Jason Clarke and Michelle Monaghan Set To Star In Action-Thriller ‘Black Site’

The producers of ‘John Wick’ are ready to bring you another action-thriller flick.

Their latest adventure? Black Site. The movie will feature performances form Jason Clarke, Michelle Monaghan and Jai Courtney.

Black Site centers on a group of officers based in a labyrinthine top-secret CIA black site who must fight for their lives in a cat-and-mouse game against Hatchet, a brilliant and infamous high-value detainee. When Hatchet escapes, his mysterious and deadly agenda has far-reaching and dire consequences.

I’m finding that a little hard to follow, but that’s probably because I’m stupid.

Production on this film is expected to begin in Australia in February, which is just a week or two away now. Sophia Banks will direct the film based on a script from Jinder Ho.

The feature is the first out the gate for Asbury Park Pictures, the joint venture between Basil Iwanyk’s Thunder Road Films and Redbox Entertainment.

No word on a release date, but it’s possible it’s released later this year, or perhaps early next year if they’re going for a festival run.

‘Suicide Squad’ Star Jai Courtney Ate ‘Shrooms To Help Him Understand His Character More

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Would you like to consume some ‘shrooms, and then tell people you did it all for work? If so, all you need to do is move to Hollywood and become an actor. During an interview with Yahoo, Jai Courtney (Boomerang) explained he experimented with mushrooms, in hopes it would help him get inside the mind of the character he was playing.

And the way he worded things in the original interview made it seem like he went on this magical ride while on a phone call with director David Ayer.

That was not the case. The 30-year-old actor told Superhero Hype the following…

“The thing is, why would I take magic mushrooms and get on a phone call with David Ayer? Obviously that’s not the case. All I was saying is that I happened at one point to have taken mushrooms, and I was doing a little thinking about my character, and just investigating stuff a little further.”

Although, we don’t think Ayer would have cared if Courtney did do that. The director has a unique style, and is always pushing his cast to be as strange as possible.

And the cast for Suicide Squad was definitely strange. We can’t even begin to list all the things Jared Leto did to his poor co-stars. He was constantly pulling some pretty sick pranks on the cast. Pranks that included condoms, bullets, and even live rats.

The film will hit theaters this weekend, and it has the potential to be one of the biggest films of the summer. You can check out the trailer below…

 

Movie Review: The Water Diviner – An Unforgettable Movie Made with Skill and Focus.

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I was kind of dreading the second period drama of the week, The Water Diviner, as the first left a bad taste in my mouth. Add in the fact that I just don’t like Russel Crowe and I expected to be miserable. But really, this was actually pretty well done.

The Water Diviner stars Russel Crowe as Joshua Connor, an Australian farmer with a special skill. He’s great at being able to find water deep underground, using only a stick and his instincts. He’s living a lonely life, as his three sons went off to war in Turkey and never came home. So Connor decides to use his gift for finding things to see if he can find the remains of his sons and bring them home.

Crowe is breaking into directing with this movie and I have to say, he has a gift for it. This is a complicated movie, with multiple venues and several underlying plotlines. But Crowe has a natural gift for pacing and manages to make it all work together to tell a seamless story.

Particularly impressive is that this was filmed on a limited budget, but still manages to look epic and big budget. That might have been due to getting gifted cinematographer Andrew Lesnue, who shot “The Hobbit” and “Lord of the Rings” on board for the filming. He managed to catch the endless blue skies of Australia, all the way to the claustrophobic battle scenes of Gallipoli, with the unique ability to capture all the moving parts while presenting a full picture at the same time.

Crowe was buyable as an Australian Farmer, on a quest that defies reason. He’s particularly poignant in his scenes with Turkish Major Hasan (Yilmaz Erdogan), a Major from the opposite side who’s been tasked with identifying countless remains. The dynamic between the two of them is incredible. They are one part adversaries and one part compatriots at the same time. Both of them play their parts as multifaceted, fully realized individuals and you can hate nor like neither one. They both have their reason for behaving the ways they do.

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This is an unforgettable movie made with skill and focus. While the storyline is simple, the complexity of the scenery, direction and characters themselves make it a cut above most of the movies out there right now.

The only problem I see with this film is getting it to appeal to a wider audience. It’s a fantastic film that has been crippled with limited release. What Crowe was able to do on a limited budget is amazing, but I only wish he’d put a little money aside for marketing. This is a gem that could easily be missed because of the lack of distribution.

There’s very little I can say was poorly done in this movie. Even Crowe’s sometimes stagnant stoicism seems to work. The minor characters are all fleshed out and the war is viewed from realistic point of view, rather than as simple hell, or over the top patriotism. It’s a film that strikes the right balance and is easily worth the watch.

Official Movie Trailer and Movie Poster Below.

WE GIVE IT: 4.5 STARS!
four and a half stars

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The Water Diviner Film Poster - 06MAY2015

Movie Review: Unbroken (2014) – You’ll find yourself yawning even as the bullets fly

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Christmas week was the week of diverse releases. We had the cute and quirky musical Into the Woods, we had the gross out comedy The Interview, and now we have the epic tale of an Olympic Athlete and former POW, Louis Zamperini, in Unbroken.

Unbroken follows the life of Louis Zamperini (Jack O’Connell), who was taken captive by the Japanese Navy after surviving on a raft at sea for 47 days, following a near fatal plane crash. The former Olympic athlete is sent to a POW camp along with two other airmen. This is an epic story, based on the hugely popular book of the same name, which follows Zamperini from his childhood, all the way to his return from captivity.

I rarely accuse a movie of this, as the case is often the opposite, but this is a movie that tries way too hard. It doesn’t rest on its laurels, i.e. Zamperini’s life story. Instead, it focuses on becoming a story of redemption and triumph over adversity. That’s where the problems come in.

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The fact is, this is already a story of redemption and survival. The subject of the film lived a full 97 years and came back alive from the war. That’s why a few scenes (some of which had to be made up) come in over the top. For example, one of the film’s most iconic moments, where the emaciated and fragile star lifts a heavy beam over his head while music swells in the background, is almost worthy of an eye roll.

For a movie with so much content, it’s surprisingly sluggish. A large part of the movie is made up of the time spent on the raft. I hate to say it, but while the idea that these guys survived on a raft so long is interesting, watching them float in the water for what feels like the entire 47 days eventually wears thin. The time at the POW camp is spent mainly over the star’s trials with a seemingly one dimensionally evil guard, while ignoring the suffering and the Zamperini’s own inner thought process.

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One thing that makes the movie fail is the heavy reliance on flashbacks. It starts out at full momentum, with the clear intention of focusing on the life raft and time in the POW camp. But then flashback after flashback drags us out of the story and into Zamperini’s troubled childhood. While interesting, I feel like it would have been more interesting if told in a linear manner, rather than as an interruption.

Jolie proves herself to be a competent director, though probably not the best editor. In a 2 hour and 15 minutes run time, this movie drags in a lot of places, though those places are usually the flashback scenes. For the most part, her style of direction really does draw you into the picture. While it’s not genius, it is competent.

It’s a well made movie, based on an interesting story, but the over the top symbolism and focus on the star’s quiet strength rings false on more than one occasion. Adding in the flashbacks, this one is actually an exhausting movie to watch. At two hours, you’ll find yourself yawning even as the bullets fly.

Unbroken could have been broken up a bit, with a bit more linear storytelling and allowing the movie to rest on its own subject matter. While it’s not the best movie I’ve ever seen, I do have to give it an A for effort.

WE GAVE IT : 3 STARS!  Watch the Official Trailer and See the Official Movie Poster below

stars

 

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Will Smith Leads as Warner Bros. Announces the Official All-Star Cast of Suicide Squad.

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This is as big as it gets in terms of Super Hero Movie news. In fact movie news in general.

Warner Bros. Pictures has confirmed today that they have finalized the actors who will be portraying the Suicide Squad in the new action adventure.

The President of Warner Bros. , Greg Silverman was overjoyed to make the announcement to the press today. Silverman stated,

The Warner Bros. roots are deep on this one. David Ayer returns to the studio where he wrote ‘Training Day’ and brings his incredible ability to craft multidimensional villains to this iconic DC property with a cast of longtime Warner collaborators Will Smith and Tom Hardy, and other new and returning favorites: Margot, Jared, Jai and Cara. We look forward to seeing this terrific ensemble, under Ayer’s amazing guidance, give new meaning to what it means to be a villain and what it means to be a hero.”

I’m sure he had visions of yachts and mansions dancing in his head as he and the rest of the world know that this movie will be huge.

If you are not familiar with the story of Suicide Squad think the A-Team working for the government.  They are basically a bunch of supervillains with a pardon to work for the government. They are sent on missions that are too dangerous for people who actually value their life.  Because of their blatant disregard for life and the living, there is usually a high body count involved in any mission they complete.

Shooting for the film will start in April with the plans to wrap in September. The target release date has been set at August 5, 2016. Mark that on your calendar.

Here is the cast as confirmed – Warner Bros. is taking this very serious.

 

Will Smith As Dead Shot

Will Smith as Deadshot

Tom Hardy as Rick Flagg

Rick Flagg

Jared Leto as The Joker

Jared Leto as the joker

Margot Robbie as Harley Quinn

Margot Robbie as Harley Quinn

Jai Courtney as Captain Boomerang

Jai Courtney as Captain Boomerang

Cara Delevigne as Enchantress

Cara Delevigne as Engchantress

Movie Review: Divergent (2014)

Divergent_film_posterA terrible movie and it is going to make millions!

1 star

The current leader at the movie theaters is yet another powerhouse coming from a tween novel. Divergent is set in an alternate universe, where segregation is the hippest new trend.

The story of Divergent is this. In a rigidly structured, dystopian future, one extraordinary girl will serve either as its destroyer or its savior. Does that sound familiar? It should. It’s been the premise of every damn tween novel adapted into a movie since 2010. Why? Because teens eat this stuff up!

You have moderately attractive (though not so attractive as to be intimidating) Tris Prior, the girl next door on whom the world depends. Needless to say, she’s special in an un-special universe. The part is played by Shailene Wooley, which is a shame. She is a very talented young actress who probably would have been better served with a more original role. Unfortunately for Wooley, she’d going to get compared to Jennifer Lawrence and is going to come up lacking.

And it’s through no fault of her own. She makes the role shine, but the entire movie is grey, uninspired and unoriginal. It’s been done before and it’s been done better. Her supporting actors do nothing for her and really give no chemistry at all. Her male lead Four (Theo James) is broody and tattooed, just like the teen girls like them.DIVERGENT

In short, this is a terrible movie and it is going to make millions! It has the perfect recipe for success in the teen girl demographic. The lead is approachable and not ridiculously attractive, which makes most girls feel like they can be her. The heartthrob is suitably heart throbby. Individualism is special and the adults are keeping everyone down.

It’s straight up genius. In addition, keep costs down by doing the whole thing is sepia tone, so no one can see the obviously computer generated special effects. Toss in a lesson about drugs being bad and you’re done.

Why am I still writing movie reviews when I could just be doing that? Seriously this could be done mad-lib style.

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(Weird Girl name) is the only one who can (action) the (place). With the help of her broody male sidekick (insert name of any object that could sound like a boy’s name. Brick, Four, Spoon, whatever) she will fight to overcome (shady government organization) and (heroic action).

Using that, I could spit out about 4 of these bad boys a year! Ka-ching!

Really, Divergent is nothing new or exciting. Fans of the novels will flock. Teenage girls who like bad boys chasing average heroines will flock. Critics will pan it, but that won’t matter. Divergent is the Hollywood machine in full force and it’s rolling over the competition.

Here is the official Trailer!

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