Posts Tagged ‘Kirsten Dunst’
Monday, January 31st, 2022
SPIDER-MAN 3 is Sam Raimi’s most financially successful movie to date, having raked in $894 million at the worldwide box office. That’s about 41 ARMY OF DARKNESSes. But it’s also his first (and only?) infamous movie. Looking back at the reviews surprised me – they were more positive than I remembered. But it almost immediately became one of those movies that the conventional wisdom decides is bad, and that reputation has stuck. Remember how I showed you all those articles declaring SPIDER-MAN 2 the best super hero movie ever? Well, a list on Comic Basics ranks part 3 as the #4 “Worst Superhero Movie That Hollywood has Ever Puked Up,” Goliath ranked it #5 “Most Terrible Superhero Film,” the much more thorough Comic Vine calculated it as #53 “Worst Superhero Movie,” but that means they consider it worse than GREEN LANTERN. In recent years, C-Net, Business Insider, comicbook.com, Complex and Gizmodo all included it on lists of the worst superhero/comic book movies. If it’s ever mentioned positively, it’s in the context of defending it,with the understanding that it’s an uphill battle (for example Sandy Schaefer’s 2020 Screen Rant piece “Is Spider-Man 3 Actually Bad? Why Marvel Fans Hate It So Much.”)
Of course, you know how I am. I always kinda liked it. In my review at the time I said it was “more flawed than Part 1 or Part 2. But not by much,” and concluded, “This movie is worse than the other two in some ways and better in other ways. Lots of interesting characters, great action scenes, good emotional climax, some sloppy writing and a weird tangent for the history books.“
Watching it now, I still like what I always liked, and not a single one of the things I used to dislike bothers me anymore. In fact, what seemed like its big weakness at the time – the hurried, three-villained plot – now makes it feel refreshingly different from other comic book movies, and honestly more faithful to these stories as they once existed in their original medium. (read the rest of this shit…)
Tags: Alvin Sargent, Avi Arad, Bill Nunn, Bill Pope, Bruce Campball, Bryce Dallas Howard, Christopher Young, Dan Bradley, hated sequels, Ivan Raimi, J.K. Simmons, James Cromwell, Kirsten Dunst, Marvel Comics, Sam Raimi, Thomas Haden Church, Tobey Maguire, Topher Grace
Posted in Comic strips/Super heroes, Reviews | 39 Comments »
Thursday, January 27th, 2022
Raimi started work on SPIDER-MAN 2 immediately after the first one, and had it ready to go two summers later. Since it really is about following up on the events of the first film, it starts by running the credits over some of them, as depicted in paintings by Alex Ross. (He’s celebrated for his realistic portraits of comic book super heroes, which are more impressive when they come from his imagination and not photography we’ve already seen, but still, it was cool that they got him). The end of the sequence reminds us that in SPIDER-MAN Peter chose not to be with Mary Jane, who he loves, so that he could be Spider-Man.
Which does not seem to be working out great so far. The painting of Mary Jane dissolves into a closeup of her face on a perfume billboard that Peter has to walk under every day, reminding him of his pain. Though he tries to hide it, it’s clear his world crumbles when she is not near. He’s in college now, and living on his own in a small apartment. Much like part 1’s opening about all the ways Peter can be humiliated on the way to school, this one piles it on real thick about what a shit sandwich life still hands to him every day. (read the rest of this shit…)
Tags: Alex Ross, Alfred Gough, Alfred Molina, Alvin Sargent, Bill Nunn, Bill Pope, Brent Briscoe, Bruce Campbell, Christopher Young, Dan Bradley, Daniel Gillies, Danny Elfman, David Koepp, Dion Lam, Donna Murphy, Dylan Baker, Elizabeth Banks, Emily Deschanel, J.K. Simmons, James Franco, Joel McHale, John Dykstra, Kirsten Dunst, Michael Chabon, Miles Millar, Rosemary Harris, Sam Raimi, Ted Raimi, Tobey Maguire
Posted in Comic strips/Super heroes, Reviews | 19 Comments »
Wednesday, January 26th, 2022
“He had an uneventful childhood. He played baseball with the other kids on the block, became fascinated with the antics of what later became his heroes – The Three Stooges, read Spiderman comic books, thought Jerry Lewis was hilarious and the Little Rascals even more so. What influenced Raimi to become the ‘horror meister’ of slash and gore films is not found in his past.”
—Dead Auteur: How a 20-year-old ex-college student carved out his horror niche in Hollywood by Sue Uram, Cinefantastique, August 1992
Immediately following Raimi’s very serious director period, his career changed drastically again. After so many stabs at the mainstream, he finally made the leap to genuine blockbuster filmmaking, bringing one of the most famous characters in the history of American pop culture to the big screen for the first time. This is not the use-Intro-Vision-to-stretch-the-budget-enough-to-try-to-compete-in-summer of DARKMAN and ARMY OF DARKNESS, or the work-with-huge-stars-but-scare-off-boring-people-by-doing-something-different-with-them of THE QUICK AND THE DEAD. I’m talking a super hero event movie with ten times the budget of DARKMAN, working with Sony Digital Imageworks to pioneer effects techniques that nobody was even sure would be possible, and finally sharing his talents with pretty much the widest audience possible for a movie. (read the rest of this shit…)
Tags: Alvin Sargent, Benny "The Jet" Urquidez, Bill Nunn, Bob Murawski, Bruce Campbell, Ching Siu-Tung, Cliff Robertson, Clint Cadinha, David Koepp, Elizabeth Banks, J.K. Simmons, James Franco, Joe Manganiello, Kirsten Dunst, Larry Joshua, Laura Albert, Macy Gray, Marvel Comics, Michael Papajohn, Rosemary Harris, Sam Raimi, Scott Rosenberg, Ted Raimi, Tobey Maguire, Willem Dafoe
Posted in Comic strips/Super heroes, Reviews | 51 Comments »
Thursday, July 26th, 2018
July 10, 1998
SMALL SOLDIERS is an effects-driven, Spielberg-produced, released-on-July-10th sci-fi movie. But it’s about killer toys (or at least potentially killer toys?) and the hero is a kid and it’s not a CHILD’S PLAY movie (it’s rated PG-13) so I’m not sure it was really seen as a movie for adults. To me and surely many others who saw it the exciting thing was that it was directed by Joe Dante, who hadn’t had a film since MATINEE five years earlier. And with him and Spielberg doing a movie about a young man fighting out of control small things raising a ruckus in a small town, obviously everybody had visions of Gremlins chomping on their heads.
Alan (Gregory Smith, HOBO WITH A SHOTGUN) is a maybe 14 year old kid who works at his dad (Kevin Dunn, MARKED FOR DEATH, also in GODZILLA, ALMOST HEROES and SNAKE EYES that summer)’s toy store, one of those ones that only sells wooden blocks and airplanes and shit, nothing based on cartoons or movies (so there’s not an anti-GODZILLA in-joke here). His dad actually has a specific “no war toys” policy. But one day his friend the delivery driver (Dick Miller, of course) has another store’s shipment of new high tech talking action figures called the Commando Elite. Alan thinks they would sell better than Lincoln Logs or whatever and convinces him to let him take a set. (read the rest of this shit…)
Tags: Adam Rifkin, Ann Magnuson, David Cross, Denis Leary, Dick Miller, Frank Langella, Gregory Smith, Jay Mohr, Joe Dante, Kevin Dunn, killer dolls, Kirsten Dunst, Phil Hartman, Summer of '98, Ted Elliott, Terry Rossio, Tommy Lee Jones
Posted in Reviews, Science Fiction and Space Shit | 19 Comments »
Tuesday, January 10th, 2017
HIDDEN FIGURES is an obvious, inoffensive, feel-good-movie with a noble purpose we haven’t seen before: honoring three African-American women whose mathematical genius helped NASA put people into space. Even today, women in scientific and mathematical fields are not given their just due. But these three were helping win the space race when they weren’t even allowed to use the same drinking fountain as their co-workers.
I don’t know if in real life these three drove to work together, but they did work together, and from what I’ve read the movie sounds fairly accurate. Katherine Goble (Taraji P. Henson, SMOKIN’ ACES) and Mary Jackson (Janelle Monae, MOONLIGHT) work as “Colored Computers” in a segregated department run by Dorothy Vaughan (Octavia Spencer, HALLOWEEN II). This is back when NASA was about to get their first giant room-filling IBM, so “computer” actually means a human being who calculates math. I never knew that. If a computer played chess was it called a video game?
Then Katherine gets an incredible assignment: working in the office calculating the trajectories and entry points for the first American manned space flights. Okay, I don’t know exactly what that means, to be honest, but it involves filling up chalkboards with a bunch of numbers and letters and lines and shit. Actually, it mostly involves this prick Paul Stafford (Jim Parsons from the fucking Big Bang Theory show) giving her snobby, suspicious looks and tossing giant piles of paper on her desk to go over the calculations that have already been gone over. And with a bunch of shit crossed out because he thinks it’s dangerous for her to know too much. (read the rest of this shit…)
Tags: Aldis Hodge, civil rights, Janelle Monae, Jim Parsons, Kevin Costner, Kirsten Dunst, Mahershala Ali, math, NASA, Octavia Spencer, Pharrell Williams, racism, Taraji P. Henson, Theodore Melfi, true story
Posted in Drama, Reviews | 5 Comments »
Saturday, May 5th, 2007
Okay, first off, I only seen Spidermans 1 & 2. I have not seen anything between 1.1 and 1.9 or 2.1 through 2.9, any of these weird DVD special editions. So if I’m missing any info I apologize. But based on this limited theatrical knowledge I would have to say that the conventnerdal wisdom is probaly a little correct: Part 3 is more flawed than Part 1 or Part 2. But not by much. It is the same tone, same combo of boy-girl soap opera, cornball old fashioned comic book reverance for New York City and high-flyin’ CGI action. Only thing is in this one they are telling a more ambitious story (good) which is stitched together with some ridiculous coincidences and occasional bad ideas (bad).
For example, there is a black goo that falls from space which just happens to land right in the park where Spider-man is kickin it with his girl. Okay, admittedly the space goo may have been intentionally honing in on Spider-man’s powers, we don’t really know this. So I will let that one go. But when Tom Hayden Church is running from the pigs he just happens to climb over a fence into a science facility where, at that exact moment, scientists are about to do an experiment with sand which turns him into a sand monster. Admittedly, he did say earlier that he had bad luck, so that is sort of explained why that happens. So I guess I can let that one go too. But what about this. Eddie Brock happens to be in a church praying for God to kill Peter Parker at the exact moment Pete is yanking the evil space goo off of his suit up in the bell tower right above, so the goo falls on Eddie and turns him into a monster!? I mean what are the chances of that? The only way to explain it is that God was pissed that Eddie would defile the church with such a bullshit prayer, so He went Old Testament on him. Hmmm, actually I like that. Come to think of it, never mind, there are no coincidences, it’s air tight. (read the rest of this shit…)
Tags: James Franco, Kirsten Dunst, Sam Raimi, Thomas Haden Church, Toby Maguire, Topher Grace
Posted in Action, Comic strips/Super heroes, Reviews | 70 Comments »
Friday, May 3rd, 2002
Spider-man, Spider-man. Sam Raimi, Spider-Man. Bruce Campbell cameos. Spider-man. Spider-man. That is a song I Wrote.
Anyway. This is a picture by Mr. Sam Raimi only it is based on the popular children’s comic strip, “SPIDER-MAN”. If I remember right what that was about was a nerdy kid who gets bit by a magic spider so he puts on a red and blue bodysuit and swings around on webs saving people. This works on account of he now has magic spider powers to climb up buildings, make wisecracks, etc. My internet research indicates that the webs actually did not shoot out of his wrists, as any logical person might assume, in fact they were shot by mechanical laser watches or some stupid shit that Peter Parker invented and this apparently is the building block on which all Marvel Comics are built and should never be altered if Sam Raimi doesn’t want to face a fate similar to that of Salman Rushdie (i.e. years of fear and hiding, followed by a cameo in Bridget Jones’s Diary). (read the rest of this shit…)
Tags: James Franco, Kirsten Dunst, Sam Raimi, Tobey Maguire, Willem Dafoe
Posted in Action, Comic strips/Super heroes, Reviews | 37 Comments »
Monday, February 5th, 2001
Hey, everyone. “Moriarty” here with some Rumblings From The Lab.
If you haven’t checked out VERN’s website yet, follow the link at the bottom of his story. He’s a serious sumbitch, and he deserves your attention. And, no, he didn’t threaten to shank me unless I gave him a good intro. With a pen this sharp, who needs a toothbrush with a razor melted into the tip?
Hey boys it’s me, Vern. Remember I am the ex-con who has done a couple reviews for you, etc. I Write in the vernacular and then about 75 people complain about it in talkbacks. But as an acclaimed Writer on the films of Cinema I THINK a motherfucker knows what he’s talking about. (In this case me being the motherfucker.)
So I haven’t been in touch with you boys in a while but here’s what’s up. I got hold of a copy of THE CROW: SALVATION which is part 3 for the Crow series. Miramax made this picture and dumped it off in one theater in Spokane, Washington or somewheres. Nobody and their mother saw it so they said, forget it, straight to video for this one. There was some Crow fans on the internet trying to start a petition or something but, fortunately, they failed. (read the rest of this shit…)
Tags: Bharat Nalluri, DTV, DTV sequels, Eric Mabius, Fred Ward, Kirsten Dunst
Posted in Action, AICN, Crime, Fantasy/Swords, Reviews | 12 Comments »
Tuesday, June 6th, 2000
Well hell man I know what your thinking and I can’t really blame you. But seriously man it is not what you think. I have never rented a gay porno. It is the ’90s I have nothing against gay pornos but personally just have not rented them before. Remember prison rape is not a homosexual act it is a predatory act of violence. not that I am into that either but just to clarify.
Anyway man what it is is Richard Nixon. Dan Hedaya plays Richard nixon and it is a comedy where two teenage gals get mixed up in all the watergate and everything. (read the rest of this shit…)
Tags: Kirsten Dunst, Michelle Williams
Posted in Comedy/Laffs, Reviews | 1 Comment »