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What to Watch: No Escape and We Are Your Friends

Still of Owen Wilson, Lake Bell, Sterling Jerins and Claire Geare in No Escape (2015)

Still of Owen Wilson, Lake Bell, Sterling Jerins and Claire Geare in No Escape (2015)

The luster of the summer movie season is now completely gone. A few late season holdouts look to get us through Labor Day but expectations are not very high. Still, that doesn’t mean that quality should lack, as the two featured releases for this week look to make a strong impression with movie goers. No Escape and We Are Your Friends are not your typical genre films for the season. As the weather cools off, we see thrillers and dark dramas make their way out of the high-octane summer months.  Continue reading

Did You Know: John Wayne

© 1962 - Paramount Pictures. All rights reserved.

© 1962 – Paramount Pictures. All rights reserved.

There is no denying that Westerns are a long forgotten genre in the minds of moviegoers in 2015. However, there was a time when it was as popular as superhero films are today. And during that time there was no bigger star than the Duke, John Wayne. His roles in classics like The Searchers and Stagecoach introduced audiences to the kind of swagger we see from leading men today and a bravado that men and women alike found interesting.

This week we look at a few tidbits that you may not know about one of Hollywood’s most successful leading men.  Continue reading

What to Watch: American Ultra and Sinister 2

At this point we are at the end of the summer movie season, leaving us with films that did not have the same level of hype as ones a few months ago but could still pack the same punch at the box office. This week, American Ultra and Sinister 2 look to battle for a place next to last week’s smash hit Straight Outta ComptonContinue reading

Throwback Thursday: Three Kings (1999)

By 1999, the topic of the Persian Gulf War had very limited appearances in the world of cinema. In may ways, David O. Russell’s stylish viewpoint on one of America’s more interesting military encounters opened the door for later films like Jarhead. It was an honest and modern take on war where economics and class played an obvious role in the motivations of everyone involved.  Continue reading

Did You Know: Ice Cube

Photo by Michael Buckner - © 2015 Getty Images

Photo by Michael Buckner – © 2015 Getty Images

With the movie Straight Outta Compton set to give us an inside look at one of hip-hop’s most infamous and successful groups, it seems fitting for this week’s Did You Know piece to focus on the one member who has diversified himself in entertainment more than any other. Ice Cube has gone from a member of the N.W.A., to a successful solo artist and transitioned all of that into a prominent role on the big screen. With all that, here are some little known facts about Ice Cube.  Continue reading

What to Watch: The Man from U.N.C.L.E. & Straight Outta Compton

Still of Henry Cavill, Armie Hammer and Alicia Vikander in The Man from U.N.C.L.E. (2015)

Still of Henry Cavill, Armie Hammer and Alicia Vikander in The Man from U.N.C.L.E. (2015)

Despite heavy competition, Mission Impossible – Rogue Nation held firm at the box office, toppling the much anticipated superhero film Fantastic Four. This week however, the competition will become extremely stiff as another spy film joins the fray and one of the more anticipated biopics of the year finally touches down nationwide. Both have the star power and marketing dollars behind them to make a very strong run to cap off what has been a very lucrative summer for the film industry.  Continue reading

Throwback Thursday: Mission Impossible II (2000)

Film still via flickeringmyth.com

Film still via flickeringmyth.com

Last week Mission Impossible – Rogue Nation erupted onto the summer movie scene to tremendous success and even more critical acclaim. This is an amazing achievement considering where the franchise was just fifteen years ago. After mild success with the first Mission Impossible, producers attempted to take both lead actor Tom Cruise and the entire series in a more action film direction. Along with the work of famed director John Woo, Mission Impossible II will probably go down as one of the worst (yet enjoyable) action films of all time.  Continue reading

Did You Know: John Woo

Still of John Woo on the set of Red Cliff (2008)

Still of John Woo on the set of Red Cliff (2008)

If you were looking to make an action film in the 90’s or early 2000’s you had no better option to go to than famed Chinese director John Woo. His films Hard Boiled and and The Killer not only helped solidify his own place within the genre but also created a true international superstar in Yun-Fat Chow. Later on, his career took a turn to Hollywood where he worked with some of the biggest stars of the era, including Nicholas Cage, John Travolta, Christian Slater and Tom Cruise.

Here are a few facts you may not have known about one of film’s most influential directors.  Continue reading

What to Watch: Fantastic Four & The Gift

Fantastic Four Poster via IMDB

Fantastic Four Poster via IMDB

After a week of comedies and spy films we return to what summer movies have been known for during the past decade. Fantastic Four tries to bring new life to a Marvel franchise that has certainly sputtered in the past but looks for a big August splash with a young cast and hungry creative crew.

Sharing the spotlight over the weekend will be a new horror/suspense film directed, written and featuring Joel Edgerton. Leaning on the dark fantasies of bullied victims, The Gift follows a psychotic person looking to extract revenge on an old bully, played by Jason Bateman.  Continue reading

What to Watch: Mission Impossible – Rogue Nation & Vacation

Still of Rebecca Ferguson in Mission: Impossible - Rogue Nation (2015)

Still of Rebecca Ferguson in Mission: Impossible – Rogue Nation (2015)

After a bit of a calm in movie releases last weekend, we are ready to ramp up the adrenaline with more action and a bit of revival comedy. Both Mission Impossible – Rogue Nation and Vacation hope to revitalize and prolong the lifespan of their given franchises in the face of up-and-coming contenders in both genres. If previews are any indication, they both look to be sticking with what they are known for and hoping that audiences still find that interesting.  Continue reading