Monday, December 8, 2008

Quick clips for Monday December 8

A whole (brave) new world

If there's one kind of science fiction I'm totally in the tank for (that means I like it, not that I want to perform military actions because of it...I'm trying old cliches to appeal to the baby boomer generation), it's the subtle kind. Sure, I'll get all hot-to-trot for some robots and a slick intergalactic destroyer, but give me something like Children of Men, and you bet your sweet bippy I'm gonna love it. Which is why I'm smiling like a kid who didn't have the secret of Santa ruined for him by an episode of "Punky Brewster" (true story), because Mark Romanek (One Hour Photo) is going to direct the remake of Never Let Me Go, an Asian-language film about an alternate reality England set in the 1990s. Adapted by Alex Garland (The Beach, 28 Days Later), the film will be more about romance and character than it about "oh my God, in this version of the world, Huckabee is president." One of my favorite "thinking person's" sci-fi writers, Ursula LeGuin, described the genre as the practice of asking "what if," not "what if we create a time-traveling cyborg" but "what if things were just slightly different" (with no disrespect to the time-traveling cyborgs). With the original film evoking comparisons to "1984" and "Brave New World," I'm incredibly intrigued by this developing project...and isn't that nice for a change. In this, the Holiday season, I start off a Monday with a heaping plate of optimism. Mmmmm tastes like honey and snow.

Holy hubris Batman!

Re-releasing a movie after it receives an Oscar nod is just good business. Bunches of people like to see what others tell them to see (or at least that's what I'm told, I find that most people ask me what they should see and then tell me they're looking forward to Four Christmases). That said, one could possibly argue that the concrete plans from Warner Bros to re-release The Dark Knight in theaters and IMAX on January 23 are a tad bit presumptuous. I mean, yes, it's a weak year and, yes, we know that Ledger's a shoo-in, but it isn't like this is some unseen gem. This is clearly a desperate attempt to try to get the $100 million its shy of Titanic's record. I mean, we all know that's not going to happen, but still, that's clearly what this is about...and I'm going to go ahead and buy into it anyway. If I can get my wife to agree to it (she's the single remaining human capable of mobility and thought that hasn't seen it yet), I'd love to go see it in the IMAX again. From that opening sequence, I was riveted and some of that was because of the presentation on that big screen. Anyway, all of this got me thinking about what the real chances are for the Bat getting a Best Picture nom and what that would mean for a nerd like me. The very thought of a comic adaptation getting a chance at a statue is just plain bonkers (yeah, I said bonkers), but I'd say I'd put the odds of a nomination at dead even (with the odds of a win being about 1 in 100). In this case, yes, it would be an honor just to be nominated. This was a boring post, but I can't help it, nothing interesting is happening right now as everyone is piss-panting about the possible strike and preparing for the holidays. Okay, fine, funny thought of the day: I was discussing what an elf would taste like if you ate it and the answer is marshmallow peep.

Weekend box office results: It could be worse, you could have made Punisher War Zone

Let's not focus on the fact that, once again, I pooped the bed on the picks, let's focus on the fact that somewhere, someone is saying "I told you no more Punisher movies and you said 'but this one will be different.' I told you I had been through the Lundgren debacle and the Travolta disaster and you said 'oh, but this one has jigsaw in it, a guy with a patchwork face and the worst accent ever.' I knew I shouldn't have taken that meeting hopped up on Oxycontin and jelly bellys." Seriously, I know that there are few certainties in life, but let me add another to your list, there will never, ever, ever be another Punisher movie. What Dolph couldn't break, $4 million opening weekend with no competition did. Keeping with this theme, I'm going to blame Dolph Lundgren for my poor predicting this week. Just because.

1.) Four Christmases - $18 million (Accuracy of prediction - 92%)

Seriously, you do understand what has happened here, right? This totally guarantees that we're getting a sequel to this as soon as next year. Have you seen Meet the Fokkers? Four Christmases (or 8 Christmases or whatever mathematical factor they'll use to determine the next one) could make that ill-fated sequel look like Godfather II. If you eat what you're dealt you get seconds.

2.) Twilight - $13 million (Accuracy of prediction - 96%)

I am so sick of talking about this movie. Even digging on it has lost its fun. I used to like taking shots at it, but now its not like kicking a dead horse, it's like kicking a dead puppy, and there's nothing funny about (most) dead puppies.

3.) Bolt - $10 million (Accuracy of prediction - 70%)

I can't figure out this freaking dog movie. It sucks, it does okay, it sucks, it does okay. Someone tell me how the only decent (semi-decent) kids movie tanked this week. I'm going to use the economy as the excuse and theorize that you're making your kids work on the weekend. I don't mean chores, I mean cleaning theater floors for a $2 an hour.

4.) Australia - $7 million (Accuracy of prediction - 0%)

Wow. Did not see this one coming. I mean, the movie is going to lose A LOT of money, but the power of Hugh's abs compelled this to another respectable top 5 finish. Thanks a lot dreamy abs.

5.) Quantum of Solace - $6.5 million (Accuracy of prediction - 63%)

Wrapping up the worst week I've ever had in the predictions game is the fast-declining 007. Still, it will finish as the top grossing US Bond film (not adjusted for inflation...Connery inflates well).

Overall accuracy of prediction - 64%

I'm not happy with it either, but its Christmas time so I'm going to chomp down on a Candy Cane and deal with it.
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