Eight Films In Development That No One Wants To See

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Building franchises and shared universes have become a big staple in Hollywood. Every studio is looking for the next big thing that could make them a billion dollars. It seems as if the days of original films are coming to an end. One would think some studios would see the signs and stop trying to push films that just capitalize on existing brands. Below, I have a few examples of such films that have no business being in any form of production.

Transformers Universe: Bumblebee

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It’s sad that this film has already started filming. I love Hailee Steinfeld and think she is a terrific young actress, but this film may tarnish her career. The plot of the film revolves around a teenage girl who finds Bumblebee in the 1980s. No other details are known at this time, but the little bit we do know further confuses the timeline of the Transformers films. We know that the Transformers have been on Earth for a long time, but Bumblebee and the other Autobots did not arrive until the early 2000s. With Megatron frozen during this time period, who could the villain even be? This film may have worked if other films in this franchise had not screwed up the history of the Transformers on Earth. Everything about this film screams, “cash grab!”

Gotham City Sirens

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This is a great example of how reactionary Warner Bros. is with the DCEU. Just because people loved Harley Quinn in Suicide Squad does not mean she should get her own full length feature. Villains getting their own film worked for Suicide Squad because they were being forced by the government to fight a greater evil. What would the plot of this film be? Who would this trio of villainesses even fight and why? There are only two ways this could work well for Warner Bros. The first one being that if the film was Suicide Squad: Gotham City Sirens, then it would make sense. I could imagine that Amanda Waller could need an all-female team to go on a specific mission. Toss in Katana and a few more DC characters and you could have a great film. The second way this could work is if it was similar to a Marvel One-Shot. This would be a great bonus feature to add to a Blu Ray while also expanding the DCEU.

Venom

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It makes no sense for Sony to make a Spider-Man film universe without Spider-Man. Venom is a classic Spider-Man villain. Sure, sometimes he can be seen as an anti-hero when battling Carnage, but that does not make a great franchise. The casting of Tom Hardy as Eddie Brock/Venom is a phenomenal choice. However, we live in an age where great actors no longer sell movie tickets. Sony should work with Marvel and incorporate this film into the untitled Spider-Man: Homecoming sequel. The possibility of Peter battling both Venom and Scorpion would be great. He’s already going to space in Avengers: Infinity War. That would be a great time for him to become bonded with the symbiote and bring it back to Earth.

Batgirl

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Joss Whedon is a great writer, director, and producer. However, just because he is taking over pick-ups on Justice League, does not mean that Warner Bros. should beckon to his every whim. We all love Batgirl and want to see her on the silver screen, but a solo film is not what we want. Batgirl is a sidekick of Batman and her villains are Batman’s villains. Starring in a live action film on her own would not translate well for the audience. However, I think having her as a main character in Matt Reeves’ The Batman is a stellar idea.

Harley Quinn vs The Joker

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This is just a big solid NO. I don’t know why this idea was ever taken seriously. Once again, maybe a one-shot of them having a friendly or deadly competition, but no feature film. Otherwise, save the next Joker appearance for The Batman.

Nightwing

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Just like Batgirl, Nightwing does not need his own film. Seeing Dick Grayson on-screen would be fantastic, but only if it is in a supporting role. It would be great if he appeared in The Batman as Bruce’s original Robin. I would enjoy seeing their on-screen dynamic. It would be good to see how he was affected by the murder of Jason Todd. We know that this incident led Bruce to become a more mean and grizzled vigilante who started branding criminals. Also, it would be nice to see him interact with Barbara/Batgirl since she dated Dick and Bruce in the comics.

Silver & Black

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Again, it makes no sense for Sony to make a Spider-Man film universe without Spider-Man. However, unlike Venom Silver Sable and Black Cat can work without Spider-Man. The issue is that we would rather see them in a universe where they can interact with the web-slinger and other Marvel characters. I could actually see this working well as a Netflix series more so than a feature film. This would allow the writers to establish more backstory for both leading ladies. Then, they could possibly cameo in future Marvel films and other Marvel Netflix series.

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‘Dunkirk’ Review

 

dunkirk-poster-600x889I am a big fan of Christopher Nolan. The films that he writes and directs are usually different and amazing. When I found out he wanted to make his passion project, Dunkirk, I was excited. We had never seen him do a war film before and I wanted to know what kind of expertise and gravitas he would bring to a film of this nature. After seeing the first trailer, I was not very impressed but hoped the film would be more interesting. I have now seen the film, and while it’s not a terrible film, I do not think it is up to par with Christopher Nolan’s previous films. Nor do I think it is the greatest war film of all time. The film is about the evacuation of the Allied soldiers that were trapped on the beaches of Dunkirk, France during World War II. The film is also told from three perspectives and in a non-linear fashion. From the land, we follow a young British private named Tommy as he tries to escape the beaches of Dunkirk. From the air, we follow two RAF pilots, Farrier and Collins, as they take down enemy planes. And from the sea, we follow Mr. Dawson, his son Peter, and Peter’s friend George as they sail to Dunkirk to ferry soldiers home to safety. The non-linear aspect of this film was a tad confusing as you are not told when you are switching from one perspective to the next. Therefore it is hard to grasp a sense of time. I feel if it were clearer when we were switching perspectives, or if each perspective were told separately, the film would have made more sense throughout. The cinematography and use of practical effects did add a realism to this film that most war films lack. The acting was fine and there were great moments of suspense, however, there was little dialogue. I understand that aspect of the film was by design, as Nolan wanted fans to focus on the situations that the characters were in, instead of what they were saying. Yet, I felt that it backfired as I hardly cared about the characters in the film because I didn’t really get to know any of them. Towards the end some light gets shed on the motivations of a few of the characters, but nothing more. Christopher Nolan cast great actors such as Tom Hardy, Kenneth Branagh, and Cillian Murphy to play the roles in this film. Yet, every actor I recognized felt like a glorified cameo. Another setback for me was the film’s score. I was expecting an exciting sound from the composer, Hans Zimmer, but the music was rather dull and bleak. It did appropriately reflect the situation the soldiers were in, but it didn’t really change during the heroic moments. I give Dunkirk a Normal 6/10. I’m happy Christopher Nolan tried something different, but now its time for him to get back into filming something exhilarating and fun. Perhaps something like Bond 25.

‘Lawless’ Review

 

Who doesn’t love a good period film? I know I sure do. Lawless is a good period film set in the times of the United States prohibition era. The film, based on the 2008 novel The Wettest County in the World, is about the three Bondurant brothers selling moonshine in Franklin County, Virginia. The brothers Forrest, Howard, and Jack are played by Tom Hardy, Jason Clarke, and Shia LaBeouf respectively.  Their business is running itself very well. Nobody challenges the brothers due to the rumor that they are immortal. Things start changing for their business when the new Special Detective Charlie Rakes, played by Guy Pearce, comes into town and warns the bootleggers that they all must kick in with his boss or there will be trouble. The film played very well with each actors delivering very different and intriguing performances. Hardy and Clarke play the elder Bondurant brothers as strong introverts while LaBeouf plays the youngest as a  weak extrovert. Throughout the movie you see Forrest and Howard whoopin’ ass and Jack getting his ass whooped. You watch the movie waiting for jack to man up and become like his brothers, but in the end, it never really happens. Still, the story is really good and watching Jack try to be like his brothers is interesting to follow. This film also does a great job in establishing its setting. From the time period to the season this film looked great. It felt as if I were looking through a time portal as everything from the vehicles to the speech was on point with the 1930s. This was a great movie that I would definitely recommend for people to watch. It was a great ride to watch with good acting throughout. The story was pretty good and the characters, especially Forrest, were fun to watch. I do recommend that the audience listen hard because some of the characters accents are a little heavy.  This is a type of movie that I see popping back up during awards season next year. After watching this film I had to look up the Bondurant brothers to find out how much of this film was true. It’s always good to  watch a movie that you are still interested in after you leave the theater. I give Lawless a Decent 8.5/10.

‘The Dark Knight Rises’ Review

 

When you have something that is way better than ordinary, blows everything out of the water, is a real game-changer, then you have something extraordinary! Now, The Dark Knight for me was epic. It was a great masterpiece that changed the game for moviegoers everywhere. Nothing was thought to ever surpass it. That was until The Dark Knight Rises hit theaters. It went so far beyond what The Dark Knight did that I could only think of one word to describe it and I had to make it up. The Dark Knight Rises was extraepic™! It blew my mind away at every turn. Christopher Nolan has done a great job in creating one of the best trilogies to ever exist in cinema. The film tells the story of Bruce Wayne eight years after the events of The Dark Knight. He has become a recluse, caging himself up in Wayne Manor and refusing to go out into the world. Gotham has become a relatively crime-free place since the incorporation of the Dent Act. This peace obviously does not last much longer as the city hopefully expects. As it turns out a mercenary called Bane, who has taken over The League of Shadows after Ra’s al Ghul’s death, comes with a plan to destroy Gotham once and for all. Bruce also becomes entangled with a mysterious cat burglar named Selina Kyle who in a way helps him out of his reclusiveness. To save Gotham Bruce must put back on his cape and cowl and become Batman once again. The film brings back stars Christian Bale, Michael Caine, Morgan Freeman, and Gary Oldman along with newcomers Marion Cotillard, Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Tom Hardy, and Anne Hathaway. Christian Bale was absolutely great this time around as Bruce Wayne/Batman. His acting was superb; flowing with the feeling and commitment that I thought was lacking in the previous installments. Michael Cain had a little less screen time this time around with Gary Oldman and Morgan Freeman getting about the same amount of screen time as in the previous films.  Like with Nolan’s previous casting of his villains I was a little hesitant of Tom Hardy as Bane and Anne Hathaway as Catwoman. Though after watching I was blown away by their performances. Anne Hathaway did a great job playing Selina Kyle/Catwoman (although she is never actually called Catwoman). Nolan using a less crazy cat lady approach to the character and more of a realistic cat burglar feel. Also Tom Hardy is just great as Bane. I had to see the film twice so I could fully enjoy his acting. With the mask covering most of his face he had to do a great job in showing his emotion; which is seen when looking into his eyes. For me, this was the perfect end to the perfect series. It had great acting, great action, and a great story as well. Here’s to hoping they don’t reboot the series for a very long time. I give The Dark Knight Rises an Excellent 10/10!