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items tagged with Sean Bean

A Goodman Is Hard to Find: "10 Cloverfield Lane," "The Young Messiah," and "The Brothers Grimsby"
Written By: Mike Schulz
Section: Movies

Category: Reviews

2016-03-12 20:28:11

John Gallagher Jr., Mary Elizabeth Winstead, and John Goodman in 10 Cloverfield Lane10 CLOVERFIELD LANE

If your biggest complaint about a movie lies with its title, that movie is probably pretty great, and director Dan Trachtenberg’s 10 Cloverfield Lane is pretty great – a splendidly acted, hugely entertaining nail-biter that continually surprises despite its claustrophobic setting and cast of characters that can be counted on the fingers of one hand. But while it may lure fans of 2008’s astoundingly irritating “found footage” monster mash Cloverfield, did that title really need to be baked into this one, effectively establishing Trachtenberg’s outing as some kind of sequel or prequel? Theoretically, the thrill of 10 Cloverfield Lane lies in our not knowing where its true threat lies. It’s a measure of the film’s success that it works despite a title implying exactly where that threat lies.


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Ridley’s Believe It or Not: "The Martian" and "Sicario"
Written By: Mike Schulz
Section: Movies

Category: Reviews

2015-10-03 22:01:02

Matt Damon in The MartianTHE MARTIAN

If you, too, are a devotee of Ridley Scott’s Alien, you’ll no doubt remember how its title came into view during the opening credits: as a series of vertical, diagonal, and horizontal white lines that slowly appeared, beginning with the “I,” one or two at a time until the capitalized “ALIEN” was wholly spelled out. Thirty-six years later, the title for Scott’s sci-fi tale The Martian is revealed in the exact opposite manner: as a full, capitalized “THE MARTIAN” that gradually fades away, one portion at a time, until only the “I” remains.

Obviously, that disappearing act is a decidedly minor touch, especially in a film that runs just shy of two-and-a-half hours. But it might also be Scott’s most quietly clever touch, and not merely because The Martian’s chief narrative concerns an “I” that winds up left all alone. By offering a literal reverse of his 1979 achievement’s opener, Scott seems to be suggesting, with an wink, that his new endeavor will be 180 degrees removed from the claustrophobic, stomach-bursting horror of Alien, and that proves decidedly to be the case. While this adaptation of Andy Weir’s bestseller (with its script by Drew Goddard) does share some of Alien’s themes, principally the life-and-death imperatives behind deep-space problem-solving, Scott’s latest is expansive instead of spare, chatty instead of terse, heartening instead of nihilistic. It’s also, far and away, and from beginning to end, the most sheerly likable movie Ridley Scott has yet made – an exciting, moving, and altogether glorious sci-fi bear hug that leaves you feeling almost ridiculously happy. Given a career that’s found him exploring every conceivable shade of dark, it turns out that Scott looks pretty great in the light.
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Blow It Out Uranus: "Jupiter Ascending," "Seventh Son," "The SpongeBob Movie: Sponge Out of Water," and "Two Days, One Night"
Written By: Mike Schulz
Section: Movies

Category: Reviews

2015-02-09 00:20:05

Mila Kunis in Jupiter AscendingJUPITER ASCENDING

After months of previews in the wake of its delayed release, the big-budget sci-fi spectacle Jupiter Ascending – originally scheduled for summer 2014 – finally landed this past weekend. And with its opening, a question can now be asked: Was there any point at which Warner Bros. executives seriously considered pulling the plug on writers/directors/siblings Andy and Lana Wachowski’s epic stinker? Maybe when Channing Tatum was cast as a human/wolf hybrid with a blond goatee and pointy ears? Or when an incensed Russian beat the hell out of his son with a throw pillow? Or when, for the performer’s first scene, the Wachowskis handed Mila Kunis an all-too-symbolic toilet brush?


Read More About Blow It Out Uranus: "Jupiter Ascending," "Seventh Son," "The SpongeBob Movie: Sponge Out Of Water," And "Two Days, One Night"...


A Map of the World: "Cloud Atlas," "Chasing Mavericks," and "Silent Hill: Revelation"
Written By: Mike Schulz
Section: Movies

Category: Reviews

2012-10-29 12:50:52

Tom Hanks and Halle Berry in Cloud AtlasCLOUD ATLAS

I’ve seen plenty of movies in which a number of excellent passages can’t seem to blend into a satisfying whole. But prior to the release of Cloud Atlas, the film version of David Mitchell’s sprawling 2004 novel, I don’t think I’d ever seen a movie in which so many merely adequate sequences combine to form a whole that’s not only satisfying but downright exhilarating. Directed by Tom Tykwer and siblings Andy and Lana Wachowski and running just shy of three hours, this genre fantasia should be a mess, and it oftentimes is. It’s also, however, a hypnotic, glorious, grandly entertaining mess, one that’s probably far more enjoyable than a more presentationally faithful adaptation would’ve been.


Read More About A Map Of The World: "Cloud Atlas," "Chasing Mavericks," And "Silent Hill: Revelation"...


Demigods and an Acting God: “Percy Jackson & the Olympians: The Lightning Thief” and “A Single Man”
Written By: Mike Schulz
Section: Movies

Category: Reviews

2010-02-22 14:42:42

Brandon T. Jackson, Logan Lerman, and Alexandra Daddario in Percy Jackson & the Olympians: The Lightning ThiefPERCY JACKSON & THE OLYMPIANS: THE LIGHTNING THIEF

Just because the title is rather unwieldy, and the film is about an adolescent with otherworldly abilities, and this kid has male and female tag-along pals with powers of their own, and there are a lot of CGI effects on display, and the director is Harry Potter & the Sorcerer's Stone and Harry Potter & the Chamber of Secrets helmer Chris Columbus, don't think that Percy Jackson & the Olympians: The Lightning Thief is necessarily indebted to J.K. Rowling. The latest Harry Potter movie, after all, found its hero contending with a Half-Blood Prince. This adventure, on the other hand, finds its son-of-Poseidon protagonist attending Camp Half-Blood. See? They're not even remotely similar.


Read More About Demigods And An Acting God: “Percy Jackson & The Olympians: The Lightning Thief” And “A Single Man”...





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