Movies

Movies

Tue
28
Jul

The Best Sports Movies of All Time

Greatest Sports Movies

With the exception of a few sports like WWE, sporting events are unscripted. It’s this unpredictability that leaves people at the edge of their seats until the last seconds of a game. Additionally, the success of underdogs can be a big plot twist that no one sees coming.

For example, the Toronto Raptors won the NBA Championship in 2019, even though no one even considered them a contender at the start of the year. In Formula 1, the 2009 championships were won by Brawn GP and Jenson Button, and yet the team had no sponsors and almost didn’t make it to the first race of the year.

These factors make sports a great subject for movies. Some are complete works of fiction, while others are based on real events. Here are some of the greatest examples of these films.

Rounders

Thu
16
Jul

Russian SF Flick Attraction 2: Invasion Visually Fun -- So Watch Muted

Attraction 2 Invasion

ATTRACTION 2 is a visually stunning work of science fiction, and the trailers for it certainly communicated that fact, drawing in new fans as well as those who had already seen the 2017 ATTRACTION to which this is the sequel. It's shots of outer space satellite action, the scenes of flying through the city in a miniatur pod craft -- in fact, the entire cinematography is a thing to be admired from beginning to end.

And if visuals were all it took to make a great film, then this one would be a success. But there's also story and dialogue to be considered, and that's where this Blu-ray release just fails to capture me. To be fair, I am watching an American dub; the dialogue in the original Russian, were I able to do more than say 'good morning' and 'let's get coffee', might make more sense.

Mon
13
Jul

From Depp, Heard Libel Case Arises Heist Story of Staggering $750 Million!

Depp Robbed of 750 million

Celebrity divorces have seldom been as replete with salacious details as has been that of Johnny Depp and Amber Heard, with each side throwing accusations ranging from physical abuse to purposeful defecation on the marital bed.

However, testimony on Monday, July 12, went into a reason for one of the altercations, in which Depp claimed that Heard had thrown a "haymaker" at him on her birthday (a reference to which was later captured on one of the many secret recordings Heard made of Depp prior to their divorce).

Fri
12
Jun

Blumhouse Hunt a Swiftian Satire Through Modern Lens

The Hunt Blu-ray

When THE HUNT was first publicized, it was received with a tremendous amount of online criticism. The elevator pitch was that it was going to be a riff on "The Most Dangerous Game" except that those hunted would be kidnapped Trump supporters released into the wilds of a private estate, to be chased down and killed in gruesome fashion by powerful elites. It was seen as further persecution of conservatives in some corners, and as the seal of approval or an open season on GOP voters by others. Paranoia, as the bards put it so eloquently, runs deep.

In truth, the film is actually a riff on "The Most Dangerous Game" except that those hunted would be... oh. Okay, so maybe the elevator pitch plot was actually spot on in that regard -- but it was hardly the whole story.

Wed
27
May

After 30 Years, Top Gun on Blu-Ray Will Still Take Your Breath Away

Top Gun 4K Blu-ray

In 1986, TOP GUN put audiences in the cockpit for the visual ride of their lives. The story of hotshot Navy pilot, Maverick (Tom Cruise), captured the imaginations of men and women, young and old, with its thrilling camera work with fighter planes and its smoldering romance scenes between Cruise and Navy pilot instructor Charlie (Kelly McGillis).

Maverick and his partner Goose (Anthony Edwards) are sent to Top Gun, the elite fighting academy, to learn combat flight maneuvers so they rely less on their missiles and more on their dogfighting tecniques. But it's more than just a class -- it's a competition among the best the Navy has to offer, and Maverick finds himself in a heated race with Iceman (Val Kilmer) for the top spot.

Wed
13
May

Spirit Reckoning: How the Wild West is Still in Fashion

Wild Wild West

While superheroes and intergalactic mercenaries take over popular entertainment, some old-school themes still linger. They may be less in demand than in the past, but cowboys pop up now and then in movies, video games and even comics to take us back to the grit of the wild west. Not only that, but current projects under development, like Spirit Reckoning, enjoy mixing up old and modern trends to create unique stories that will resonate with today’s audiences. You can find such originality throughout the entertainment industry, each sector often inspiring others. But, first, a bit more detail on this upcoming horror western.

Spirit Reckoning Update

Wed
08
Apr

Mortal Kombat Legends: Scorpion's Revenge Hits Like a Hard "R" G.I. Joe

Mortal Kombat Legends: Scorpion's Revenge

MORTAL KOMBAT LEGENDS: SCORPION'S REVENGE opens, as one would expect, by presenting itself as the origin of Hanzo Hasashi (voiced by Patrick Seitz), a great warrior who returns to his village to find it completely eradicated, including his wife. His final vision before his death is the brutal murder of his young son.

Hasashi awakens in the Netherrealm, where he is about to be tortured for all eternity by a demon. But Hasashi's will is indomitable, and he manages to fight his way through an army of demons, to the door of Quan Chi (Darin De Paul), who offers Hasashi an opportunity to get his life and family back -- by obtaining the key to unlock Quan Chi's imprisoned master through a competition held between the many realms. The competition comes with an opportunity for revenge against the man who killed Hasashi's family. And so Scorpion is born.

Sun
22
Mar

Uncut Gems Unsettling Cinema

Uncut Gems Adam Sandler

Howard Ratner (Adam Sandler) is a jeweler living the high life at a high cost. He maintains a home with his wife and children, as well as an apartment with his girlfriend, Julia (Julia Fox), but it takes more than selling high-end jewelry to a select clientele. Howard has so many shady irons in the fire that he has to become an expert juggler and proficient liar just to keep his head above water.

Sun
15
Mar

What if Superman Landed in Soviet Russia? Superman: Red Son Releases on Blu-ray and Digital

Superman: Red Son

The Mark Millar Elseworld's tale gets an animated adaptation as DC Entertainment releases SUPERMAN: RED SON on Blu-ray this week.

The premise of the Elseworld's graphic novels was a genius concept, wherein all the elements of an event in the DC Universe would remain fairly the same save for one change that altered the course. With SUPERMAN: RED SON, that change was a half-day; twelve hours, in which the Earth's rotation made it so that Superman's rocket did not land in a Kansas wheat field, but in a wheat field within Stalin's Russia. This gave Millar the playground to test the ages-old argument of nature versus nurture, as Kal-El is raised to support the State and believe in the ideals of communism, while still having within him the innate desire to help people.

Mon
09
Mar

Charlie's Angels (2019) an Object Lesson in Killing Franchises

Charlie's Angels 2019

It's not uncommon that a film have a theme. In fact, it's expected. You watch the film, you digest the plot, and you come away with the idea that, "This was a metaphor for this particular idea."

With CHARLIE'S ANGELS (2019), the theme is explicitly stated up front, and then slowly moves on from there to hammer that idea home. And that idea is this: Men are bad.

In this Elizabeth Banks take on the CHARLIE'S ANGELS franchise, the Townsend Agency has been taken international, just as John Bosley (Patrick Stewart) is retiring. As a tribute of sorts, every agency's lieutenant is given the rank of "Bosley," which doesn't get confusing at all. So Elizabeth Banks' character in this film is called Bosley as she directs the activities of her Angels while also directing the actors playing them.

Sat
07
Mar

The Quest for Family Connection Drives Disney Pixar's Latest Film Onward

Onward

Tom Holland and Chris Pratt lead this charming Disney Pixar road-trip / buddy movie in a literal quest for magic.

ONWARD presents a world that was initially sword-and-sorcery, and allows it to evolve into one of modern convenience while retaining its culture and creatures. Unicorns are nusance animals, small dragons are kept as pets, and the ways of magic have been long forgotten for smart phones.

Fri
06
Mar

Best Film of 2019 Awarded to Iconic Villain: Joker

Joker Critical Blast Best of 2019 Film Award

In the category of Best Film of 2019, we had, perhaps, the most competition of any other category in terms of the number of nominations each vying for the vote of our readers. But there were only three films that cracked the barrier into double-digit percentages of the prize pie.

Coming in for the third place position was the Quentin Tarantino blockbuster with Brad Pitt and Leonardo DiCaprio, ONCE UPON A TIME... IN HOLLYWOOD, and its fictionalized account of actors who fell into the orbit of Roman Polanski and Sharon Tate, just before the Manson family murders.

Wed
04
Mar

No Joke: Joaquin Phoenix Nabs Best Film Actor for 2019

Joaquin Phoenix best actor 2019 joker

We've written before how so many of our Best of 2019 contests were nail-biters, close calls, and photo finishes.

That certainly wasn't an issue when it came to the readers selecting who they thought the Best Film Actor of 2019 was. In fact, the field quickly narrowed so that the only significantly reportable actors became a club of five.

Rosa Salazar and Brie Larson made up the superhero contingent of the pack, for their roles in ALITA: BATTLE ANGEL and CAPTAIN MARVEL, but both were overtaken by Taron Edgerton for his exuberant performance in the Elton John musical-biopic, ROCKETMAN. 

Thu
13
Feb

Super Sonic: Sega's Hedgehog Hero Comes Out a Winner

Sonic the Hedgehog Movie

The face of Sega gaming races into theaters this weekend, and the studio execs have got to be crossing their fingers that they hit a home run with the fans. After early images of the CGI-rendered Sonic the Hedgehog were released to the public and met with universal scorn, production went back to the drawing board to get a redesign that was closer to the original version of the character.

They succeeded.

Sonic the Hedgehog came from another dimension, fleeing to this one as a hiding place when evil beings on his home wanted to take his power from him. It's a power he doesn't fully understand himself, but it manifests itself in super-speed. (Warner Brothers may want to push back THE FLASH another year after this.) He's been here for a while, living among the people in a small town, hiding from them. He knows them intimately, even though they don't know he's around.

Thu
13
Feb

DOWNHILL Is An Unfunny Waste Of Great Comedy Talent

DOWNHILL opens 2/14/2020, and the best part will be the trailers  before it starts.

Will Ferrell and Julia Louis-Dreyfus are two living legends in comedy. Both are Saturday Night Live alumni who revel in the absurd. Ferrell graduated to the big screen with Old School and never looked back. Elf, Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy, Talladega Nights: the Ballad of Ricky Bobby, Step Brothers, The Lego Movie 1 & 2, Get Hard, and my personal favorite of his impressive resume, Stranger Than Fiction -- It seemed like the funny man would never bomb. The same holds true for Louis-Dreyfus,, the only woman in history to have won Emmy Awards for three different comedy series. Seinfeld put her on the map, and The New Adventures of Old Christine and Veep proved that she belonged to be considered among the heavyweights like Carol Burnett and Betty White. 

Tue
11
Feb

An Inept Con Run Against Gullible Rich: This is Parasite

Parasite on Blu-ray

More than a few people expected PARASITE, the film from director Bong Joon Ho, to take the Oscar for Best Foreign Film. But far more were taken aback when the film swept out of that niche and into the broader part of the ceremony, nabbing the coveted Best Picture award.

Is it a good movie? It's okay. It's a bit of a slog in places, and for American audiences it is clogged with cultural references that won't strike any chords. Add to that the fact that the entire thing is subtitled throughout, and you end up with a recipe for Decidedly Not a Blockbuster.

Tue
11
Feb

Bird Flu: Femme-Flick Box Office Latest Victim of Coronavirus

Birds of Prey Sick

It cost 84.5 million to make.

It grossed about $81 million in its opening weekend.

Which has executives at Warner Brothers scratching their heads and wondering: Why is BIRDS OF PREY AND THE FANTABULOUS EMANCIPATION OF ONE HARLEY QUINN not making money?

It couldn't be the wordy title. It couldn't be that the movie posters had all the mass appeal of a 14-year-old girl's scrapbook project inspired by Botticelli. It couldn't be that the few ads that were shown revealed the well-known intellectual property characters to be even less like their historical counterparts than any prior DC Extended Universe or televised Arrowverse character. It couldn't be that the R rating shut out a large segment of a target audience that could be remotely interested in a superhero property (if, indeed, BIRDS OF PREY was intended to be one).

Sun
26
Jan

Tim Miller Leads Terminator Franchise to Dark Fate

Terminator Dark Fate

So here's the gist of the TERMINATOR franchise: In the future, an artificial intelligence called Skynet decides humanity needs to be purged, and creates killer robots called Terminators. But John Connor would mount a successful resistance, forcing Skynet to invent time travel so it could send a robot into the past to prevent him from growing up. It fails, and only succeeds in ensuring John Connor is born. His mother Sarah Connor then fights Terminators who keep coming back trying to kill him, so that the future would be changed.

Only we see in the beginning of TERMINATOR: DARK FATE that a Terminator arrives and does successfully shoot the young John Connor in the head, leaving a grieving and embittered Sarah Connor behind to mourn.

So Skynet's future is assured, right?

Wrong.

Sat
11
Jan

When the Special Effect is the Plot, Gemini Man is What You Get

It's WILL SMITH vs WILL SMITH when the classic "nature versus nurture" debate gets tested in the world of highly-skilled assassins.

Smith plays Henry, a superior marksman with a number of kills to his credit all of whom were bad guys looking to do harm to America. Until this last job. When he misses his kill shot by a few inches (still killing the man), he decides it's time to hang it up and retire. After all, an inch in the wrong direction can mean the difference between a righteous kill and an innocent victim.

However, Henry's last target wasn't what Henry was led to believe: he was the loose end in a secret government program called "Gemini." And now the last dangling thread is Henry himself. He manages to fight off an attack of several men, picking up a partner in Agent Dani Zakarweski (BIRDS OF PREY's MARY ELIZABETH WINSTEAD) by accident. And when the men behind his kill order realize Henry escaped, they send in their best man.

Junior.

Thu
02
Jan

Voting Open for Best of 2019 Awards

Nominations for Best of 2019

Holy cow, is it 2020 already? 2019 seems to have gone by in a blur, with so much happening in the world of movies, television, and comics. It's hard to believe we've reached the point where we now have the unenviable task of deciding which was the best in every category to recognize the producers of entertainment for their efforts.

So below you will find the voting form, featuring our nominations for the best film, film actor, television series (which includes streaming until we come up with a word to replace television), series actor, comic book storyline, comics writer, comics artist, and -- last but certainly not least -- the selection of our Critical Blast Bombshell of the Year from the list of 2019's Bombshell of the Month candidates.

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