Interview with John Wick director Chad Stahelski – from stunt double to director

Remember the 1990s movie The Crow, staring Brandon Lee who was tragically shot on set during filming? In order to finish the movie, a young Chad Stahelski went from stunt double to actor double. Now here he is, decades later, as one of the brightest new directors in Hollywood.

Read the full interview at Yahoo.com.

Movie Review – John Wick Chapter 3 – Parabellum (Not as good as the first two)

RIP Star Wars Hero Chewbacca – Peter Mayhew is Dead

I was born in 1978.  I have never known a world without Peter Mayhew.  Until now.  I have never met the man.  I know very little about him personally.  What I do know is the joy he brought me throughout my life via his portrayal of the beloved Star Wars character Chewbacca.

I read an essay once about a writer taking her young daughter to an art exhibit and the little girl asking, “Who made this?  I have to talk to her.”  The author was pleased her daughter had made the connection between magic in the art and magic in the artist.  And so one must assume that Mayhew had a spark of magic, playfulness, joy, and creativity to be able to embody Han Solo’s furry buddy.

Some actors try to distance themselves from their most popular role (*ahem* Shatner), but from all the pictures I’ve seen on social media in the past day or so, Peter Mayhew truly enjoyed and embraced his association with/as the world’s most famous wookie.  As Luke reminds us in the trailer for episode IX, “No one’s ever really gone.”  We will always have Mayhew’s iconic performances to remember him by.

Yet it’s hard not to feel like the universe is a little less magic now.

Avengers Cameo – That random kid in Endgame is someone we’ve seen before

Ty Simpkins as Harley Keener from iron man 3

Who is that teenager from Avengers Endgame standing there at the end with our heroes — but a little apart —  looking vaguely familiar? With no explanation given? It’s like Broom Boy from The Last Jedi, all over again. Who is that kid?

Want to try to guess where you’ve seen him before in the Marvel Cinematic Universe? Shave off a few years. Make him around ten. Do you remember which movie he had a MAJOR role in?

It’s okay if you can’t remember, because his movie came out in the early days of the MCU, and his character was promptly forgotten. The MCU has a literal cast of thousands by now, especially if you include everyone in the Wakandan army from Avengers Infinity War. If you’re not a real die-hard MCU fan, it can be hard to keep all those faces and names straight.

So, who’s the kid in Endgame?

It’s 17-year-old actor Ty Simpkins, reprising his role of Harley Keener: the kid from Iron Man 3 who gave Tony Stark a little sanctuary — and a lot of geeky help — when Stark needed it.  The two made a good connection, and the kid character was enjoyable to watch, instead of precociously irritating. (Although I think Robert Downey Jr could have chemistry with a mailbox if the role called for it.)

Harley is a forgotten hero in the MCU, but that doesn’t mean he won’t come back for Phase 4. He made one half of a great team with Stark, and has a bright scientific mind of his own. And don’t forget, Stark left him some goodies to play with that he might have put to good use by now.

Stark seems to slip effortlessly into mentor roles. Just look at his relationship with Spider-Man. It might be because of the way Stark begins his journey as an overgrown kid, and naturally doesn’t want to see bright young people make the mistakes he did. Stark has come a long way after 11 years in the hero profession. Remember the days when he amused himself onstage by peeing in his Iron Man suit?

Will Harley make another appearance after Avengers Endgame?

Harley’s old enough to help our heroes in a meaningful way now, should they choose to take him on for the new generation of Avengers.  Get that boy a shield! Or maybe his own Mark V Iron Man special.

There’s no reason not to see this kid again after Endgame, since we know Phase 4 of the MCU begins next. Also, now that Earth knows a gazillion intergalactic beings exist, you can’t have too many heroes to help keep them safe.

Iron Man 3 – movie review

Avenger Superhero Powers, by Category

The entire MCU Movie Order – Several Options for your pre-Avengers Endgame Watch or Rewatch

Endgame Pee Planning from Rudd, Ruffalo & RunPee

Paul rudd and mark ruffalo talk endgame
With all due respect to Ant-Man and The Hulk, RunPee has a  better pee strategy for Avengers: Endgame.

Avengers: Endgame is a looooong film. Even the MCU actors are perplexed by fan questions about peeing during their three-hour movie extravaganza. Producer Kevin Feige just claims you can’t leave your seat ever, not at all, and must stay to watch Every. Single. Scene.

Thanks, Feige. This isn’t like some Jedi Mind Trick that works best on the feeble-minded. Marvel fans tend to be more savvy.  But there are ways around this unrealistic edict.

Two Endgame actors came forward to be “helpful”

  • Paul Rudd – Ant-Man – says to pee in your popcorn bucket under the seat.
  • Mark Ruffalo – The Hulk – suggests sitting in your excrement for three hours wearing adult diapers. Which maybe the Big Green Guy would consider, but we doubt Bruce Banner would do it.

I kid you not. Rudd and Ruffalo offered these tidbits on Jimmy Kimmel when asked when to ‘go’ during the three-hour bladder-busting runtime of Avengers: Endgame.

That’s not including the half hour of surely the best trailers to come out this year before the film even starts. So…plan on 3&1/2 hours of butt-time.

More unpleasant pee options for Endgame and your bladder

Besides the clear indication these actors are joking — and besides knowing from personal experience that no adult diaper can contain a FULL BLADDER’s worth of contents (don’t ask) — I wouldn’t try either option. I guess you could insert a catheter and attach a bag to your leg….but…come on. I dare anyone to go that route.

This leaves you either suffering/squirming, or going in absolutely dehydrated, or dementedly sprinting off at what will undoubtedly be the worst moment ever in Endgame’s monumental epic.

How about something easier, more sanitary, with less chance of getting you arrested for public exposure? (Sorry, Paul.)

With respect to Rudd and Ruffalo: may we suggest a third option to the pee bucket and a cold, wet pair of Depends?

RunPee: Because movie theaters don't have pause buttons.Try using the RunPee app instead. Seriously.

RunPee has one mission: to help every bladder on Earth during the movies.  The RunPee Family watches every wide release film on or before opening night, and curates a handful of Peetimes where you can slip out out to the loo, read the brief synopsis of what you missed, and sit back down without ever being confused or missing something crucial.  The app also tells you what happens in the 1st three minutes if  you’re running late, and covers the Extra Scene details, all without spoiling a thing. You’ll know when to go, as the app silently vibrates in your lap. Just grab your cellphone and go.

This is the RunPee app’s 10th Anniversary, so back when Iron Man first woke up in a cave in Afghanistan, RunPee’s been steadily building a library of thousands of Peetimes and movies….including, of course, each film in the Marvel Cinematic Universe.

Avengers Endgame Peetimes will be posted before opening might, with  — in a film this long — several Peetimes to choose from, stretched across the movie.

RunPee is the only realistic option if you want to be comfortable in any long epic movie. Kudos if you can hold it that long with no discomfort, but now you don’t have to. And you can get all the sodas and beer you want, run out to the concession stand for food, or just stretch your legs a minute. All without getting arrested from indecent exposure by peeing in a popcorn bucket…

Learn more about the RunPee App and try it for free. 

Once More, with Ant Man. Why him, and why now?

Mark Ruffalo Sneaks in a Hulk Movie

The 59 Hour MCU Rewatch Marathon Means the RunPee App is a MUST Have for Your Bladder

Learn More About The RunPee App

Agent Coulson Quiz – Clark Gregg – Actor, writer, director and the ‘Nicest Guy in Hollywood’

With Captain Marvel taking us back to Agent Coulson’s younger days, I made this quiz, including questions about Clark Gregg’s mostly Avengers-oriented movie career, and trivia concerning his private life, in 10 fun multiple choice questions. Good luck!

Quiz – Clark Gregg: Actor, director, writer and ‘Nicest Guy in Hollywood’.

Hope you had as much fun taking this Clark Gregg quiz as I had making it. You seem like a nice person…so maybe you could share this quiz with 42 of your best friends, and perhaps my boss/son will give me a (well-deserved) raise.

Enjoy Some More Avenger Actor Quizzes and Articles:

Quiz – Brie Larson – The New Captain Marvel and Beyond

Quiz – Samuel L. Jackson and his Mother “Frakking” Movies

Why You Need to Care About Carol Danvers – Captain Marvel Facts and Film Updates

The Four Films You Need To Watch To Understand Captain Marvel (Speculation, Pre-Movie Release)

The RunPee Family Chats Pre-Event on the 2019 Oscars

oscars statue for the awards ceremony
The big one: this year’s Oscar Awards Ceremony

Here’s a list of every Oscar movie nominee for 2019, and the RunPee Family‘s thoughts about who might and should win, and who we think will be snubbed this year. All links go to RunPee’s reviews if we have one, and the (post-Oscar) winners are listed in bold.

Best Picture

Black Panther: RunPee Mom  – Excellent Oscar-worthy movie. RunPee Jilly – I just want to see Black Panther win, because I’m a die hard geek and I don’t think anything has won Best Picture in my genres since The Return of the King. This winning would make me deeply happy.

BlacKkKlansman: Mom –  Haven’t seen this one, but I’ve read excellent reviews. I’m sure it’s Oscar-worthy. Jilly – I remember RunPee Dan really liking this one, but I haven’t seen it.

Bohemian Rhapsody: Mom – Nor have I seen this movie, but according to second-hand information, it’s also Oscar-worthy. Jilly – I know this is the big one, but I found it more sad than I was ready for. It’s not enjoyable to watch people be sad and suffer that much.

The Favourite: Mom –  It would make me happy for Queen Anne of Brittany if a movie made about her won an Oscar. Anne was one of the more colorful monarchs of the past, and should have her own movie.

Green Book:  Mom –  Nope, haven’t seen this one either, but this is my daughter’s number one pick and that’s good enough for me. I’ll see it soon. RunPee Sis – This is the best film ever and you feel really good after seeing it.

Roma: Mom –  Good grief, why oh why, was this nominated for Best movie and Best Foreign Film? One or the other Academy, not both.  Also, this isn’t really a movie I could even finish watching when I downloaded it last night.

A Star is Born: Mom – My favorite, my very, very favorite. This is why I want Roma taken out of the mix. If my movie doesn’t win, then I’m pretty sure my anger, along with millions of other fans, will cause a polar shift. Jilly – Like Bohemian Rhapsody, too sad for me. I prefer pulse-pounding excitement in a fantastical story. Why are Dramas always selected for Best Picture?

Vice: Mom – A great movie, but I question if it’s Oscar-worthy. Granted, Christian Bale did an outstanding job of capturing the essence of Dick Cheney, but I don’t think Dick’s essence made for an outstanding movie.

 

Best Actor in A Leading Role

Christian Bale: Mom –  It was no great stretch for Bale to play Dick Cheney. He doesn’t deserve an Oscar for simply looking like Dick Cheney. That award should go to the makeup department.

Bradley Cooper: Mom – My favorite. Brad went way out of his comfort zone to not only act and sing in this movie, but direct it as well. Jilly – Brad did a great job, but I don’t think it was better than other movies he’s acted in. I’d call his role here ‘regular good’, not “blow-my-mind good.”

Willem Dafoe: Mom – A multi-talented actor for sure, but he’s up against some stiff competition.

Rami Malek: Mom –  He just may walk away with the Oscar, and even though Bradley is my favorite, my money is on Rami for the win. Jilly – Rami became Freddie in my eyes. I think this is the clear winner.

Viggo Mortenson: Mom –  Again, the competition is stiff and I don’t see the Academy recognizing him with an Oscar. Jilly – Viggo has a reputation for becoming the role he’s tasked with.  Green Book really shows off his skills.

 

Best Actress in a Leading Role

Yalitza Aparicio: Mom –  Okay Academy, are you really going to award the Oscar to an actress with only one movie in her filmography, and snub seven-time nominee Glenn Close?

Glenn Close: Mom –  My favorite. This lovely lady has given us some of the best movies we’ve seen, and that’s validated by the fact that she’s been nominated seven times for an Oscar, but never taken one home. The time is now Academy, to right that wrong.

Olivia Colman: Mom –  A superior actress, but I don’t think the Academy will find her performance as great as her fans did.

Lady Gaga: Mom –  I think this amazing woman will take home the gold, and even though I’d like to see Glenn finally become a winner if only for sentimental reasons, Lady Gaga deserves every eight and a half pounds of the Best Actress award. Jilly – I think Gaga and her movie, along with Bohemian Rhapsody, will sweep the awards.  Regardless, the Lady did a truly fine job in her big role debut.

Melissa McCarthy: Mom – The Academy will snub Melissa; it’s just what they do. It doesn’t matter that this funny lady cranked out some great drama for the movie, the Academy will not award her gravitas. Jilly – I’d be shocked if Melissa won this.  She’s not be taken seriously as an actor before, and this film never went to wide release, so the support might not be there for ‘comic’ actor.

Best Actor in a Supporting Role

Mahershala Ali: Mom – I think Ali will walk away a winner.

Adam Driver: Jilly – A promising young actor. He’s worth watching.

Sam Elliot: Mom – Probably won’t take home the gold, but it’s great the Academy gave him a small pat on the back. Jilly – This was a relatively small role in a big film, and his arc wasn’t very satisfying, so this nom surprised me.

Richard E. Grant:  We’ll add something if we think of it. 🙂  No thoughts yet (hereafter to be called NTY).

Sam Rockwell: Mom – Sam did the best job portraying George W Bush than any other actor in Hollywood, however his role was so small it would be hard to screw it up. On the other hand, where the hell is Steve Carell‘s nomination? Jilly – I agree with Mom: this should have gone to Steve Carell.

 

Best Actress in a Supporting Role

Amy Adams: Mom – She played the wife of Dick Cheney; how hard could that be for an actress of her caliber?

Marina de Tavira: Mom – Most likely she’ll take home the gold.

Regina King: NTY

Emma Stone: Jilly – A versatile young actress who gets better every year.

Rachael Weisz: NTY

 

Best Animated Feature Film

Incredibles 2: Jilly – If Into the Spider-Verse hadn’t come out this year, Incredibles 2 would clearly take the win. It was as good, and in some ways better than the first Incredibles film, was funny, completely enjoyable, and a sure crowd-pleaser.  Pixar usually pulls out the win, but in this case I’m going with the Sony Spiderman nominee.

Isle of Dogs: Mom – I loved everything about this movie, but it won’t take home the gold. Jilly – I very much enjoyed this film, but I think it’s a little too quirky, and a bit unrelatable for the Academy. It’s a small film, compared to Incredibles 2, Ralph Breaks the Internet, and the best one: Into the Spider-Verse.

Mirai: Jilly – A small movie, and I’m not sure how this could compete with the others.

Ralph Breaks The Internet: Jilly – I very much enjoyed this film, and I hadn’t even seen the original. Like Incredibles 2, it’s a big crowd-pleaser that still won’t take the win from Into the Spider-Verse.

Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse: Mom – Even though my favorite is Isle of Dogs, the Spidey movie is the clear winner. Jilly – The hands-down Oscar win. This is nothing short of an amazing achievement in animated film. The look, the story, the voice acting, the plot, the EVERYTHING. I don’t have enough pluses to give to this A+ film.

Best Cinematography

Cold War:  Not seen.

The Favorite: NTY

Never Look Away:  Not seen.

Roma: NTY

A Star Is Born: Mom – With Bradley Cooper and Lady Gaga in the ‘photograph’, why are we even talking about this? Jilly – Most of the shooting was very straightforward, so I’m not sure why this was nominated.  It’s not a fantasy, it’s not a period piece, and most of the big scenes were two people on a stage. There were so many other interestingly filmed movies this year, so what gives?

Best Costume Design

The Ballad of Buster Scruggs: Mom – This quirky little movie probably won’t take Oscar home, but it was great fun watching it anyway.

Black Panther: Mom – The obvious winner. Jilly – Now we’re talking.  This epic film created an entire futurist nation’s worth of fabulous garments and sparked an entire design movement. I don’t think a lot of films in the history of ever can boast this. (Read more: Dress like a Wakandan from Black Panther.)

The Favourite: Jilly – A period piece with many gorgeous dresses. The Academy likes this kind of thing.

Mary Poppins Returns: Jilly – The costumes were okay, as this is a period piece that seamlessly picks up a generation after the first Mary Poppins leaves off. It looked good. But the costumes weren’t exactly

Mary Queen of Scots: Mom – This is my favorite movie of the category, however, it can’t win against Black Panther. Jilly –  Another great-looking period piece; this is worth having on the list. But Black Panther should leave this category in the dust.

Best Director

BlacKkKansman: Mom – Spike Lee is the obvious choice here. The other five can stay home. Jilly – The Academy likes Spike Lee, and the movie’s a meaty one. This should be the winner.

Cold War:  Not seen.

The Favourite: NTY

Roma: NTY

Vice: NTY

Best Documentary

Free Solo: Jilly – I’m the rock climber in the family, so I should have seen this. However, we don’t tend to cover documentaries, so unfortunately I have no option on Free Solo. I’ve heard good things, though, and look forward to seeing movie snippits  at the Oscars.

Hale County This Morning, This Evening: Not seen.

Minding the Gap: Not seen.

Of Fathers and Sons: Not seen.

RBG: Mom – My choice. Jilly – Agreed.

Documentary (Short Subject)

Black Sheep: Not seen.

End Game: Not seen.

Lifeboat: Not seen. (Jilly – I’d like to see this one.)

A Night at The Garden: Not seen.

Period. End of Sentence: Not seen.

Film Editing

BlacKkKlansman: NTY

Bohemian Rhapsody: Mom –  My choice, this could not have been an easy film to edit.

The Favourite: NTY

Green Book: NTY

Vice: NTY

Foreign Language Film

Capernaum: Not seen (Jilly – we don’t see many foreign films.)

Cold War:  Not seen.

Never Look Away: Not seen.

Roma: Mom – Not my choice, but it’ll win anyway.

Shoplifters: Not seen.

Makeup and Hair Styling

Border: Not seen.

Mary Queen of Scots: Mom – Definitely the clear choice. Jilly – Of the three listed, this one is the shoe-in. Good period work.

Vice: Mom – Turning Christian Bale into Dick Cheney was nothing short of a miracle, but is it enough to take home the gold? Jilly – Yes, Christian was converted into an older, heavier man, but where is Black Panther for this category? One actor in heavy makeup shouldn’t take the gold, no matter how well acted it was. Have you SEEN the amazing hair and makeup in Black Panther?

Music (Original Score)

Black Panther: Mom – The obvious winner. Jilly – There should be no competition  with the fabulousness of this score. It paints a magical picture and carries the view along the story with finesse.

BlacKkKlansman: NTY

If Beale Street Could Talk: NTY

Isle of Dogs: Jilly – Honestly, I really enjoyed this film, but I cannot remember the score. It was a little bombastic, I think. Kind of out there? That kind of thing can be noticed by the academy, but I doubt it will win, compared to Black Panther.

Mary Poppins Returns: Jilly – like the costuming, the music fits on perfectly as a sequel to the original. It’s not my favorite choice, however.

Music (Original Song)

‘All The Stars’ from Black Panther: Jilly – I do enjoy this song, but I don’t think it’s good enough to win, and certainly not against Shallow. I wish this song was going to be playing live during the Oscars, like the others.

‘I’ll Fight’ from RBG:  Jilly – This will be playing during the night of the Oscars, like all the other nominated songs except for Black Panther.

‘The Place Where Lost Things Go’ from Mary Poppins Returns: Jilly – This is a sad and sweet lullaby, but nothing I find outstanding. If I had to pick a song from Mary Poppins Returns it would  be the “Light Fantastic” song with the Lamp Lighters, as a callback to the showstopping Chimney Sweep passage from the original Mary Poppins.

Shallow‘ from A Star Is Born: Mom – I can assure you that if this song doesn’t win, there will be blood. Jilly – The best part of A Star is Born  is this song. It should bring down the house when they perform it live at the Oscars, even though Brad Cooper will not perform it as himself and not his character.

‘When A Cowboy Trades his Spurs For Wings’ from The Ballad of Buster: Scruggs – NTY

Production Design

Black Panther: Mom – Why is anyone else nominated? Jilly – The win, I’m sure.

The Favourite: NTY

First Man: Jilly – Except for the brief moon scene, everything was just set on  1950s and 60s Earth. I see this movie has several noms, but it was so understated and underwhelming that I’m not sure why.

Mary Poppins Returns: Jilly – Nice, but not outstanding. It could have been a stage play for the production quality evident here. I don’t think a single scene looked like it was filmed on location.

Roma: NTY

Short Film (Animated)

Animal Behaviour: Not seen. Jilly – We don’t see a lot of shorts, since they don’t need Peetimes.  😉 

Bao: Jilly – This is the only one I watched, coming as it did before The Incredibles 2.  I found it creepy. I know it means a  lot to some cultures and it’s probably the only one most people have seen. It will probably win.

Late Afternoon: Not seen.

One Small Step: Not seen.

Weekends: Not seen.

Short Film (Live Action)

Detainment: Not seen. Jilly – We don’t see a lot of shorts, since they don’t need Peetimes.  😉 

Fauve: Not seen.

Marguerite: Not seen.

Mother: Not seen.

Skin: Not seen.

Sound Editing

Black Panther: NTY

Bohemian Rhapsody: Mom – A clear winner.

First Man: NTY.

A Quiet Place: Jilly – Although I love this movie, I was struck by the seeming irony of this movie about silence getting nominated for sound. Then I thought about it, and looked a few things about A Quiet Place up, and I’d like to see this take the win. It’s a great lesson in less being more and I can’t wait to see the clips for this during the Oscars.

Roma: NTY.

Sound Mixing

Black Panther: Jilly – If Black Panther doesn’t get the bigger awards, like Best Picture, then I expect it to sweep the smaller Oscars like this one.

Bohemian Rhapsody: Jilly – Great as the Queen songs are in Bohemian Rhapsody, I’m not sure this film has significant sound mixing effects.

First Man:  Jilly – Besides playing period-appropriate golden oldies tunes, I don’t remember much sound in First Man. I suppose the mixing from the experimental jets and rockets is what they have in mind for amazing award-worthy sounds. We will see during the Oscar night clips.

Roma: NTY

A Star Is Born: Mom – My favorite and it better win.

Visual Effects

Avengers: Infinity War: Mom – Oh for god’s (no pun intended) sake, how can you even put more than one film in this category. Jilly – WIN WIN WIN, in my book. I don’t think it gets any better than this.

Christopher Robin: Jilly – Christopher Robin was lovely, but I don’t expect it to win.

First Man: Jilly – I only thought the few moments on the moon looked interesting, but it wasn’t all that and a bag of chips.

Ready Player One: Jilly – This was certainly a visual feast, but the movie underwhelmed and really has no chance to win this.

Solo: A Star Wars Story: Jilly – I enjoyed Solo a lot, and it looked as good as a Star Wars film can but it can’t win against the well-deserved Avengers: Infinity War.

Writing (Adapted Screenplay)

The Ballad of Buster Scruggs: NTY

BlacKkKlansman: Mom – Brilliant writing; should take home the gold.

Can You Ever Forgive Me?: Not seen.

If Beale Street Could Talk: NTY

A Star Is Born: Mom – An incredible story, but not an entirely new story.

Writing (Original Screenplay)

The Favorite: NTY

First Reformed: Not seen.

Green Book: NTY

Roma: Mom – Of course it’ll win.

Vice: Mom – There were some really great lines in this movie, but not enough to skate past Roma.

Quiz – Brie Larson – The New Captain Marvel and Beyond

Oscar winner Brie Larson lights up the screen in her new movie Captain Marvel, propelling us forward to Avengers – End Game. Here’s a quiz on this amazing actress, covering her star-studded career. 

Quiz – Brie Larson: The New Captain Marvel

I hope you enjoyed my quiz — feel free to share it with all your friends. It doesn’t cost anything, and it makes me look good to my boss, who’s withholding my hard earned raise until my Social Sharing numbers increase. 😉

More Posts on Captain Marvel, and Getting Up To Date Before Avengers: Endgame:

Why You Need to Care About Carol Danvers – Captain Marvel Facts and Film Updates

1st Captain Marvel Trailer Finally Drops – Comments and Speculation

 

The 5 Movies You Need To Watch Before Infinity War

Avengers Infinity War – Characters Missing in Action, Whereabouts Unknown

Quiz – Rebel Wilson – The Newest Funny Gal in Show Business

In this 10-question quiz, I’ll give you the plot — courtesy of the IMDb — and you give me the movie. Hope you have fun, and maybe learn something new about Rebel Wilson. Good luck. 

Quiz: Rebel Wilson – The Funniest Woman in Hollywood

Thanks for stopping by! And if you enjoyed this quiz, maybe you can check out my quiz on Melissa McCarthy (the other really funny gal I love). If you enjoy that one, maybe you can share my other quizzes with your bestest best buddies.

Movie Review – The Hustle – Rewatch Dirty Rotten Scoundrels Instead

Quiz – Melissa McCarthy – The Funniest Woman in Hollywood

Movie Review – Perfect Pitch

Movie Review – Pitch Perfect 2

Melissa McCarthy on College Days, Life of the Party

Movie Review – Life of the Party

Movie Review – The Happytime Murders

Main Song from A Star Is Born – Video and Lyrics from Shallow – by Lady Gaga and Bradley Cooper

lady gaga and bradley cooper in a star is born
Not a shallow song.

One of the top movie hits from 2018 is A Star is Born, starring Lady Gaga and Bradley Cooper, and their best film song is Shallow, a duet that slays everyone who hears it. It’s almost a perfect song, and it won the awards to prove it:

  • Golden Globe Award for Best Original Song
  • Grammy Award for Best Song Written for Visual Media
  • Grammy Award for Best Pop Duo/Group Performance
  • Critics’ Choice Movie Award for Best Song
    Shallow also got an Oscar nod for Best Original Song, and the movie itself, A Star is Born, is nominated for seven other different Oscars: Best Picture, Best Actor, Best Actress, Best Supporting Actor, Best Cinematography, Best Adapted Screenplay, and Best Sound Mixing

It was also announced by the Oscars Academy (via Twitter) that Lady Gaga & Bradley Cooper will perform Shallow at the 2019 Oscars. All the news sources say Copper will perform in a tuxedo as himself, and not as his character Jackson Maine. IndieWire says “Cooper doesn’t intend to bring back Jackson’s deep voice either as he said he has fully retired the character.” No matter. Lady Gaga will probably do her big extravagantly costumed persona as herself. Expect the song to bring down the house!

Here’s the movie video of their on-stage duet of Shallow, followed by the lyrics for you to learn, and sing along to in the privacy of your shower:


Shallow

(Sung by  Bradley Cooper and Lady Gaga) 

Tell me somethin’, girl
Are you happy in this modern world?
Or do you need more?
Is there somethin’ else you’re searchin’ for?

I’m falling
In all the good times I find myself
Longin’ for change
And in the bad times I fear myself

Tell me something, boy
Aren’t you tired tryin’ to fill that void?
Or do you need more?
Ain’t it hard keeping it so hardcore?

I’m falling
In all the good times I find myself
Longing for change
And in the bad times I fear myself
I’m off the deep end, watch as I dive in
I’ll never meet the ground
Crash through the surface, where they can’t hurt us
We’re far from the shallow now

In the shallow, shallow
In the shallow, shallow
In the shallow, shallow
We’re far from the shallow now

Oh, oh, oh, oh
Whoah!

I’m off the deep end, watch as I dive in
I’ll never meet the ground
Crash through the surface, where they can’t hurt us
We’re far from the shallow now

In the shallow, shallow
In the shallow, shallow
In the shallow, shallow
We’re far from the shallow now…

(Songwriters: Andrew Wyatt / Anthony Rossomando / Mark Ronson / Stefani Germanotta. Shallow lyrics © 2018 Sony/ATV Music Publishing LLC, Downtown Music Publishing, Universal Music Publishing Group, Concord Music Publishing LLC.)


Movie Review – A Star Is Born

Quiz – The Movie and Musical World of Lady Gaga

Quiz – Bradley Cooper – Actor, Director, Musician

Full List (and comments) for the 2019 76th Annual Golden Globes Nominees & Winners

RunPee and the 2019 Oscars – Predictions for the 2018 Movie Awards

Highlights from the 2019 Sundance Film Festival

This year’s Sundance Film Festival recently concluded.  [pullquote]The celebration of independent cinema has been going strong for 41 years[/pullquote].  Even though the Oscars for 2019 haven’t been handed out yet, the Oscar race for 2020 has officially begun.  Past Oscar nominees and winners Little Miss Sunshine, Manchester By the Sea, and The Big Sick, among others, have premiered at Sundance.  This year, 121 films were screened over ten days in Park City and Salt Lake City, Utah.

Here are some of the highlights from this year’s Sundance Film Festival:  

The festival opened with After the Wedding, director Bart Freundlich’s adaptation of the 2006 foreign film of the same name.  The drama starring Julianne Moore and Michelle Moore got disappointing reviews.

Chinonye Chukwu became the first black woman to win the Grand Jury Prize for her film Clemency.  In the movie, Alfre Woodard plays a prison warden haunted by all the death row executions she’s carried out.    

The Souvenir won the World Cinema Grand Jury Prize.  The movie is about a film student finding her voice, while dealing with a complicated relationship that threatens her future.  Written and directed by Joanna Hogg, the movie stars Tilda Swinton and her daughter Honor Swinton Byrne. A sequel is already planned that will add Twilight star Robert Pattinson.    

One Child Nation, directed by Zhang Lynn and Nanfu Wang, won the U.S. Grand Jury Prize for Documentary.  The movie focuses on China’s one-child policy and the effect it had on generations of families.

Honeyland (not to be confused with the drama Honey Boy) won the World Cinema Grand Jury Prize for Documentary.  It focuses on the last female bee hunter in Europe who must save the bees and restore natural balance when something goes wrong.   The movie was directed by Tamara Kotevska and Ljubomir Stefanov.

Brittany Runs a Marathon won the Audience Award for U.S. Dramatic film.  The inspirational comedy, written and directed by Paul Downs Colaizzo, stars Jillian Bell as a woman trying to take control of her life by running.  

 Queen of Hearts, directed by May el-Toukhy, won the Audience Award for World Cinema Dramatic film.  The movie is a tragedy about a woman who seduces her stepson.

Knock Down the House, directed by Rachel Lears, won the Audience Award for U.S. Documentary.  The movie follows four young women, most notably Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, who dare to challenge incumbent candidates for their seats in Congress.  Rep. Ocasio-Cortez was not able to attend the screening of Knock Down the House due to complications with the government reopening.  However, she surprised the audience by joining a Q & A after the film, via web conference.  The movie provoked an emotional response from the audience and received a standing ovation. 

 Sea of Shadows, directed by Richard Ladkani,  won the Audience Award for World Documentary. The film is about efforts to save the vaquita, the world’s smallest whale, and end criminal practices that are damaging its habitat.  

The most anticipated film going into the festival was Joe Berlinger’s Extremely Wicked, Shockingly Evil, and Vile, a biopic of serial killer Ted Bundy starring Zac Efron and told from the POV of Bundy’s girlfriend.  Although the movie received mixed reviews, Netflix purchased it for $9 million dollars after the festival.

Blinded by the Light was this year’s most expensive acquisition.  It was sold to New Line for $15 million and set a new festival record for the most money spent on a film.  The movie is about a teenage Pakistani boy in England in the ‘80s who’s obsessed with Bruce Springsteen. The film was directed by Gurinder Chadha, who directed the feel-good hit Bend It Like Beckham.    

Amazon spent the most money, setting a record with $46 million dollars total.  Amazon bought one of the movies with the most buzz going into the festival, The Report, for $14 million.  The Report is about an investigation into the CIA’s torture practices following 9/11. It stars Adam Driver, Jon Hamm, and Annette Bening, and was written and directed by Scott Z. Burns.  

Amazon also bought two of the biggest comedies at the fest: Brittany Runs a Marathon, acquired for $14 million, and Late Night, acquired for $13 million. Late Night, directed by Nisha Ganatra,  stars Emma Thompson as a TV talk show host who clashes with a new writer, played by actual writer-producer of the film, Mindy Kaling.

In addition, Amazon paid around $5 million for the Shia LaBeouf film Honey Boy, directed by Alma Ha’rel.  LaBeouf wrote the autobiographical film, in which he plays his own father, as a way of exorcising his demons.  The movie got a standing ovation at its premiere.

The most controversial film at the festival was the documentary Leaving Neverland, a four-hour two-part documentary about two men who claim to have been sexually abused by the late pop star Michael Jackson, as children.  After death threats and talks of protest, extra security and police presence were added to the screening. There were also counselors available at the screening. The premiere only attracted two protesters.  A premiere in Salt Lake City the next day attracted eight.  In early January, Jackson’s family decried the film as “just another rehash of dated and discredited allegations.”  After the screenings, they released an official statement speaking out against the film.  Leaving Neverland, directed by Dan Reed, will air on HBO this spring.  

The dramedy The Farewell, written and directed by Lulu Wang, was one of the most popular films at the festival.  It was acquired by A24 for an amount rumored to be around six or seven million dollars. The movie stars Awkwafina from Crazy Rich Asians.  It’s about a family that decides to keep a matriarch’s cancer diagnosis from her, to lessen the sting of death. The movie will probably get a theatrical release this summer.

Documentaries did well at the festival, too.  

Ava DuVernay’s company ARRAY acquired the documentary MERATA, about the Maori filmmaker Merata Mita, who was the first indigenous woman to direct her own movie.  Hulu acquired The Untitled Amazing Johnathan Documentary from director Ben Berman. The film focuses on the stand-up comic/magician of the title.

Sony Pictures Classics acquired the documentary “David Crosby: Remember My Name.”  A.J. Eaton is the director. Cameron Crowe, director of Almost Famous and Singles, known for his love of rock and roll, is a producer.  Crosby is best known for his work with the band Crosby, Stills, and Nash.

Hail Satan? was acquired by Magnolia Pictures in November and is planning a spring release in the U.S.  The humorous documentary follows The Satanic Temple as they try to uphold religious pluralism.

Magnolia Pictures is also the distributor for the documentary Ask Dr. Ruth.  Ask Dr. Ruth may not have made as big a splash as expected.  I could not find much reporting on it from the festival.  We will have to wait and see if it becomes as popular as RBG and Won’t You Be My Neighbor? 

Liza Mandelup won a special Jury Award for Emerging Filmmaker for Jawline, a documentary about social media fame.

Mads Brügger won  the Directing Award for World Cinema Documentary for Cold Case Hammarskjöld.  The twisty documentary focuses on the investigation of the death of Dag Hammarskjöld, Secretary-General of the United Nations.

Warning: This trailer is a little bit graphic.

Jacqueline Olive was presented with a U.S. Documentary Special Jury Award for Moral Urgency for her film Always in Season.  The film deals with the subject of lynching.

Warning: disturbing content.

Luke Lorentzen received a U.S. Documentary Special Jury Award for Cinematography for Midnight Family.  The documentary follows a Mexican family who run a private ambulance service, as they struggle to make ends meet in a competitive market.  

Netflix acquired American Factory for $3 million dollars.  The documentary is about a Chinese company that opens a factory in a shuttered General Motors plant.  The movie follows the culture clash of Chinese and American workers working together, as well as the American workers trying to adapt to newer technology.  

Ursula Macfarlane’s documentary Untouchable, which chronicles Harvey Weinstein’s years of alleged sexual abuse of women, also debuted at Sundance.  The festival is where Weinstein picked up many of Miramax’s hits including Clerks, Reservoir Dogs, and Sex, Lies, and Videotape. However, he is now no longer welcome there.    

Todd Douglas Miller’s documentary Apollo 11 got a Special Jury Award for Editing.  The film recreates the space mission, including audio and video the public has never experienced before.  

 

Alexandre O. Phillipe screened his film Memory: The Origin of Alien which examined Ridley Scott’s horror classic.   I couldn’t find any information on whether this film has a distributor or not. However, Phillipe is an established director who made 78/52: Hitchcock’s Shower Scene about Psycho a few years ago.  I predict this movie will be playing on the big or small screen by the end of the year.

Showtime acquired the four-part documentary Wu-Tang: Of Mics and Men ahead of the festival.  

Directed by Sacha Jenkins, the docu-series tells the history of the rap group Wu-Tang Clan.  The first two parts of the series premiered at the fest. The living members of the group were in attendance.  

Warning: adult language.

Netflix premiered The Great Hack as a work-in-progress. The documentary from directors Jehane Noujaim and Karim Amer focuses on the Cambridge Analytica/Facebook data breach.  

Sony Picture Classics acquired the documentary Where Is My Roy Cohn? about the lawyer whose clients included Joseph McCarthy and even Donald Trump.  The movie was directed by Matt Tyrnauer.

Halston, a documentary about the American fashion designer, and sold to the company formerly known as The Orchard Film Group, has yet to be renamed.  The film will get a theatrical release this spring, be broadcast on CNN in the third quarter of the year, and later stream on Amazon.  The movie was directed by Frédéric Tcheng.  

Other notable Sundance films include:

Patrick Brice premiered the horror movie Corporate Animals, starring Demi Moore and Ed Helms. Polygon described it as “The Office, but gory.”  It does not appear to have a distributor yet.

Neon and Topic Films went in together to acquire the film Luce.  Luce was directed by Julius Onah and adapted from JC Lee’s play. The psychological thriller stars Naomi Watts and Tim Roth, as parents whose adopted child’s identity is called into question.  

Netflix premiered the new Dan Gilroy film Velvet Buzzsaw.  Like his critically acclaimed movie Nightcrawler, it stars Jake Gyllenhaal.  It’s a horror movie set in the art world. It got mixed reviews at the festival, but now that it’s available on Netflix, Twitter is having fun with it.  

Warning: graphic images and disturbing content.

Apple bought its first film, writer-director Minhal Baig’s Hala.  It is unclear whether the movie is going straight to iTunes or will have a theatrical release.  The film is a coming of age story about a teenage girl trying to reconcile her Muslim faith with her love of skateboarding, and her crush on the boy next door.  

Harmony Korine’s latest film, the much-anticipated Beach Bum starring Matthew McConaughey as a Florida poet who seems too busy drinking and doing drugs to write, screened at the festival.  It has a cool lineup of a supporting cast, including Snoop Dogg and Jimmy Buffett. I could not find any reviews of the film, however. It entered the festival with a distributor already (Neon), and will hit theaters in March.  That’s when we’ll find out if the McConaissance continues.

Warning: contains language, drug use, and naked McConaughey butt.

Pete Davidson of Saturday Night Live fame got rave reviews for his performance in Big Time Adolescence, written and directed by Jason Orley.  Unfortunately, the film has not been picked up for distribution.

HBO bought the movie Native Son ahead of its premiere at Sundance.  The movie was directed by visual artist Rashid Johnson, and adapted from Richard Wright’s classic novel by playwright Susan Lori-Parks (best known for her Broadway play Topdog/Underdog).  It updates the tragic story of Bigger Thomas to a modern setting.  Native Son will play on HBO sometime later this year.  

A24 premiered Joe Talbot’s film The Last Black Man in San Francisco.  The movie stars Talbot’s friend Jimmie Fails. The two of them wrote the film together, loosely basing it on Fails’ attempt to move back into and restore his childhood home.  The movie deals with the theme of gentrification. It received a standing ovation at its premiere and won the Directing Award for U.S. Dramatic film.

Neon acquired the horror film The Lodge for around $2 million.  It is the English language debut for directors Severin Fiala and Veronika Franz.  The pair previously made the movie Goodnight Mommy (which is creepy as hell and one of the best horror movies I’ve ever seen).  The movie stars Riley Keough from American Honey and will be released later this year.  The movie is about two children trapped in a cabin with their future stepmother, the survivor of a religious cult.  

Neon and Hulu acquired Abe Forsythe’s Little Monsters in a mid-seven-figure deal.  The horror comedy stars Lupita Nyong’o as a kindergarten teacher defending her class against zombies.  

Neon also acquired the U.S. rights for Monos,  a thriller about a group of Latin American rebels and their American hostage.  The movie was directed by Alejandro Landes and stars Julianne Nicholson.  It received a World Cinema Dramatic Special Jury Award.  

HBO acquired Share, for seven figures.  It was written and directed by Pippa Bianco, who received the Waldo Salt Screenwriting Award.  The film is about a cellphone video that appears to show a sexual assault, which gets widely shared.  The movie was also honored with a U.S. Dramatic Special Jury Award for Achievement in Acting.

IFC Films bought the drama Official Secrets, directed by Gavin Hood.  The movie stars Keira Knightley and Ralph Fiennes, and is based on British secret service officer/whistle blower Katherine Gunn, who tried to stop the 2003 invasion of Iraq.  

Babak Anvari premiered his new horror film Wounds, starring Armie Hammer and Dakota Johnson.  It’s about a bartender who starts to suffer from supernatural phenomena once he picks up a stranger’s cellphone.  Some reviewers hate it. Some hate the ending, but like the mood of it. All agree it is deeply weird. So was Hammer’s way of promoting the film: dropping fake dead cockroaches on the floor at parties around the festival.    

Amazon premiered crowd-pleaser Troop Zero starring Viola Davis, Allison Janney, and Jim Gaffigan.  Directed by Bert & Bertie, the movie is an underdog story about a girl who wants to win a national competition to get her voice on NASA’s golden record, and rallies her scout troop to help her.  

Paradise Hills might be the most surreal movie to come out of the festival.  It sounds like pure eye candy.  Vulture called it this year’s “most bonkers” Sundance movie.  It stars Emma Roberts, and features Awkwafina in a dystopian world.  

Which of these films will make it to next year’s Oscars ceremony?  

Check this blog to find out. We’ll have more news and reviews of 2019’s hottest films.  In the meantime, you can check out our coverage of this year’s Golden Globes and see how well I did at predicting the Oscar nominees.  And always remember to use the RunPee app to get Peetimes for the latest movies.

RunPee and the 2019 Oscars – Predictions for the 2018 Movie Awards

Highlights, Comments, and Acceptance Videos for the 76th Annual Golden Globes

Full List (and comments) for the 2019 76th Annual Golden Globes Nominees & Winners

Golden Man’s Top Ten Films List for 2018