movies

Review: ‘Transformers: The Last Knight’ is dense and dumb

Director: Michael Bay

Starring: Mark Wahlberg, Anthony Hopkins, Josh Duhamel, Laura Haddock, Stanley Tucci

Synopsis: Humans and Transformers are at war, Optimus Prime is gone. The key to saving our future lies buried in the secrets of the past, in the hidden history of Transformers on Earth (IMDb).             

Rating: PG-13

Year: 2017

Thankfully, Hollywood averted a looming writers’ strike back in May. So can somebody please explain why it still feels like nobody bothered showing up to the writer’s room for Transformers: The Last Knight?

I get gruff for it, but I actually enjoy the first live-action Transformers movie from a decade ago. It has a good understanding of itself and never takes itself too seriously. Like its animated source material, it whole-heartedly embraces the ridiculousness of giant, alien robots turning into cars and fighting each other. Most importantly, though, it features a coherent story with somewhat relatable characters, which is something the other films seriously lack.

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It’s sad then to see that Bay seems uninterested in addressing this long-standing critique of the series in ‘The Last Knight’ (that or he’s completely oblivious). Again the emphasis for Bay is on beautifully framed action set pieces and not the cartoonishly dull characters who occupy them.

If you care about Mark Wahlberg’s Cade Yeager at all during this movie, chances are it’s because you saw the previous film. Here Cade’s a shell of his former self. Instead of organically developing through character decisions, it feels like he is being artificially manipulated through an indecipherable narrative via convenient, clunky dialogue. It’s obvious by Wahlberg’s undying deer in the headlights look that even he’s not sure what’s going on. That’s no mark against Marky Mark; rather, it speaks to how dense and dumb the script is.

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Adding insult to injury, Bay has miraculously managed to annoy me with Sir Anthony Hopkins, one of my all-time favorite actors. He plays the head of a mysterious organization in charge of keeping safe the secret history of the Transformers, although I couldn’t tell you why or how that’s done. Whatever their techniques, it seems the cat is out of the bag and Hopkins is out of his mind, or at least his character is: constantly babbling on and ceaselessly insulting everyone around him. Eventually, shaking my head became a reflex each time he opened his mouth.

Wahlberg and Hopkins may be the sexy names atop the marquee, but Transformers has always been about Optimus Prime and the best stories always pit the Autobot leader against his nemesis Megatron. One of the more exciting additions to the cast is Frank Welker, who returns to voice the dominate Decepticon for the first time in this live-action run (with no explanation for the character’s apparent resurrection). Alongside Peter Cullen, there is novelty in hearing the two original voices together again but neither one gets significant screen time.

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Like everyone else in this movie, the pair are unfortunate victims of an over-bloated script that doesn’t much bother itself with what makes the most sense story-wise. Major characters move around the world with no explanation as to how, major damage from epic fight scenes just disappear, and looming conflicts are easily explained away as if they never happened. After a numbing while of exposure, I began to question my own competency.

Despite his blatant disregard for these characters or their story, Bay knows how to shoot action. This is readily apparent throughout these films, ‘The Last Knight’ included. The problem is that most of it becomes digital noise because we’re not invested in the outcome and we’re not invested in the outcome because either we don’t care about the characters or we don’t spend much time with the ones we do care about.

Grade: F

What did you all think of Transformers: The Last Knight? Or did you give up on the franchise a long time ago? Let us know in the comments below!

 

THANK YOU!!!

Since Movie Minutes moved to WordPress, our new blog has garnered over 20 followers and our YouTube channel has reached over 40 subscribers! That sounds like a small feat, but we couldn’t be more thankful to you all for helping us reach these milestones!

To celebrate the occasion, we will be giving away FREE digital codes for some movies, including the old Brendan Fraser The Mummy movies, the first two John Wick flicks, and more! We will be uploading a video to our YouTube channel (link below) later today with more details on how you can win, so make sure you subscribe and leave your notifications on!

Again, thank you all so much for the support! We hope you will continue to be a part of the Movie Minutes family for many years to come!

YouTube channel: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCbaZxRiJYYCFJNfdu2rfhFQ

Review: Hollow script can’t keep ’47 Meters Down’ afloat

Director: Johannes Roberts

Starring: Mandy Moore, Claire Holt, Matthew Modine

Synopsis: Two sisters vacationing in Mexico are trapped in a shark cage at the bottom of the ocean. With less than an hour of oxygen left and great white sharks circling nearby, they must fight to survive (IMDb).

Rating: PG-13

Year: 2017

It seems every year or so we get a shark-based survival thriller. Last year Blake Lively was stranded just off shore by a Great White in The Shallows. This year Mandy Moore and Claire Holt are stranded at the bottom of the ocean. 47 Meters Down to be precise. Though despite the titular depth, this film’s script feels rather shallow.

Moore and Holt play sisters vacationing in Mexico after Moore’s boyfriend apparently left her for being “boring.” It’s here that younger sister Holt gets the bright idea that the two should go cage diving with total strangers whom they met the night before at a party as a way to make Stuart (that’s Moore’s ex-boyfriend) jealous. Take that, Stuart!

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It’s become a rule at this point: B-list thrillers must feature stupid people making stupid decisions. 47 Meters Down happily obliges. Actually, it’s borderline offensive how idiotic these ladies are. Neither of them point out how dangerous the whole situation is, even after something like, oh I don’t know, blatantly acknowledging the poor condition of the diving cage as well as the illegal chumming of the water that the men of the “Sea Esta” engage in.

When Moore does eventually begin to have second thoughts, Holt snaps her back to party girl mode simply by reminding her how totally jealous Stuart will be once he sees the pictures of them underwater with real sharks. That’s how shallow and cliché the catalyst that sets this plot into motion is. Ugh.

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As for the two handsome strangers who entice the ladies out to sea, they are not given names up to this point. They are only referred to as “the guys” by one of the sisters as a part of a throwaway comment. Even the captain of the ship (Matthew Modine) is introduced as “Captain.” Not Captain Taylor or Taylor, just “Captain.”

We learn so little about this trio of men during the course of the film that I was under the assumption that the filmmakers were intentionally withholding information for the purpose of revealing some shady intentions during an obligatory third act twist. Nope. The script simply did not call for any background development.

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The problem with not maturing your characters, especially in a thriller like this, is that your audience will be emotionally detached once the true horror starts biting down. Unfortunately, this was my experience with 47 Meters Down. There was so little to these characters that I felt isolated from and uninterested in what was happening to them.

In the end, that’s the true horror of 47 Meters Down. The script is so light on development that the venture feels like a waste of time in a world of films like The Shallows. Even sitting at the bottom of the ocean whilst consumed by darkness and running dangerously low on oxygen, Moore and Holt still find time to discuss Stuart. It’s script details (or lack there of) like that which had me rooting for the sharks.

Grade: D

What did you all think of 47 Meters Down? Are you looking forward to seeing it during your Fourth of July break? Let us know in the comments down below!

John Wick: Chapter 2– Steelbook Unboxing

John Wick: Chapter 2 is as much fun as the original and one of our favorite movies of the year so far! Thankfully, as is the case with the first film, Best Buy has delivered a sleek, new Steelbook! Check it out in our short unboxing video!

What do you all think of this steelbook and/or the John Wick franchise so far? Hit us up in the comments below with your thoughts!

Review: ‘It Comes at Night’ leaves everything to the imagination

Director: Trey Edward Shults

Starring: Joel Edgerton, Kelvin Harrison Jr, Christopher Abbott, Carmen Ejogo, Riley Keough

Synopsis: Secure within a desolate home as an unnatural threat terrorizes the world, a man has established a tenuous domestic order with his wife and son, but this will soon be put to test when a desperate young family arrives seeking refuge (IMDb).    

Rating: R

Year: 2017

Writer-Director Trey Edward Shults is a true filmmaker. He knows how to effectively manipulate the technical aspects of the art form in such a way that compels viewers deep inside the minds and lives of his conflicted characters. The young artist proved so with his debut feature Krisha, which was one of the most engrossing dramas of last year.

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Shults now gives us his take on the popular post-apocalyptic subgenre, employing much the same approach. His latest film is slow burning moral tale that’s more interested in exploring the small scale, psychological toll of a deadly virus outbreak and less so the mass repercussions of one.

It Comes at Night takes place deep within the wilderness where Paul (Joel Edgerton) and his small family live an isolated life inside a boarded up home. Their intrinsic existence goes mostly uninterrupted until Will (Christopher Abbott) and his desperate family stumble upon them in search of sanctuary. The encounter leaves both families questioning each other’s intentions as well as their own judgment.

Shults takes unsettling advantage of the mounting paranoia. Slow, lingering shots stack the anticipation while faint, undiscerning sounds coupled with the unrelenting blackness of night keep you questioning what’s really going on just off screen. At times It Comes at Night plays more like a haunted house flick than anything else, but it’s Shults’s way of helping moviegoers access the inner turmoil of his characters. He is keenly aware that it’s our imaginations, not witches or bored teenagers, that conjure the most frightening scenarios.

 

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The strength of the film’s tone is matched by its equally impressive performances. Joel Edgerton is an expressive actor capable of conveying a multitude of complex feelings in a single expression. As Paul he’s simultaneously courageous and fearful, angry and heartbroken. It’s an intricate performance that seems rather simplistic because of how believable it is. Kelvin Harrison Jr. also deserves praise for his convincing portrayal of Travis, Paul’s teenage son, who acutely conveys the inner struggle of an innocent youth coming to grips with the harsh realities of his new nightmare.

Despite the film’s technical achievements and resonate performances, It Comes at Night would have benefited from further developing a couple ideas that it plants earlier on. As it stands, the film is so strong overall that nothing is lost by not following through on some of those thoughts. It’s just unfortunate that Shults didn’t see them through as they could have added to the characters’ psychoses.

It Comes at Night is another enthralling effort from Trey Edward Shults.

Grade: A-

What did you all think of It Comes at Night? Did you dig the psychological thriller aspect? Or would you have preferred a more straight forward horror film? Let us know in the comments below!

20 Movies to get hyped for down the back half of 2017

Believe it or not, we are already halfway through 2017! So far we’ve seen some truly great flicks and though the summer movie season has been off to a sluggish start, things will definitely pick up down the back half of the year. To help mentally prepare you for the coming greatness, we’ve assembled a brief look forward to our most anticipated movies of these last six months!

JULY

1.) Spider-Man: Homecoming

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Totes obvi, right? Not only will Spider-Man: Homecoming be one of the biggest films of the summer (if not, the biggest), but it’s also one of our most anticipated and for some good reasons. First off, it’s the third cinematic interpretation we’ve had of the character since Sam Raimi’s original back in 2002 and after the bump in the road that was The Amazing Spider-Man films, it’ll be interesting to see how audiences respond to yet another reboot. Then there’s the casting of Tom Holland. We got a taste of his take on the Web Head in Captain America: Civil War and, needless to say, we want more. Plus who doesn’t want to see Spidey swinging around with Ironman on the big screen?!

Spider-Man: Homecoming swings into theaters July 7th.

2.) War for the Planet of the Apes

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Rise of the Planet of the Apes took audiences and critics by surprise with how good it actually turned out and then Dawn of the Planet of the Apes was even better. These films somehow have us rooting against our own race! Motion capture guru Andy Serkis owns the role of Cesar and gives arguably his best performances in these films. ‘Dawn’ Director Matt Reeves returns to helm this third entry in the reboot and if it’s anywhere near as good as the previous film, this trilogy belongs in the discussion as one of the all-time great movie trilogies ever.

War for the Planet of the Apes will ravage a theater near you July 14th.

3.) Atomic Blonde

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Before Deadpool 2, Director David Leitch (also co-director of the first John Wick) is taking on another comic book property: Atomic Blonde. Leitch shoots some of the most exciting action today and his choreography is brutal so casting is important. So when you don’t have someone as hard working as Keanu Reeves in front of the lens, it’s important to secure equally committed talent. Charlize Theron fits that bill perfectly, having completely changed her model appearance (and winning an Oscar) for Monster (directed by Wonder Woman’s Patty Jenkins). Slap some supporting talent like James McAvoy and Sofia Boutella on the side and we’ve got one of our most anticipated movies remaining.

Atomic Blonde busts into theaters July 28th.

AUGUST

1.) Detroit

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Kathryn Bigelow is the only female to ever win Best Director at the Academy Awards. She did so back in 2008 with The Hurt Locker (which went on to win Best Picture that year). Her subsequent film, Zero Dark Thirty, was also nominated for Best Picture in 2012. Bigelow continues her streak of hard-hitting reenactments with Detroit, based on the city’s infamous string of tragic protests in the late 60s. A powerful true story with immense talent behind the camera deserves equal talent in front of the camera and that’s just what we’re getting. John Krasinski, Will Poulter, John Boyega, Anthony Mackie, and Jason Mitchell all headline this tremendous cast.

Detroit hits theaters August 4th.

2.) Logan Lucky

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Steven Soderbergh  (Traffic, Ocean’s Eleven, Erin Brockovich) hasn’t made a movie since 2013’s Side Effects. After mid-ranged film budgets seemingly went extinct in Hollywood, Soderbergh declared his retirement from directing. Naturally, his resurgence alone is reason enough to include his next project on this list. Imagine our excitement then when we found out who’s in it: Daniel Craig, Channing Tatum, Adam Driver, Seth MacFarlane, and Hilary Swank. As if that weren’t enough, they’re going to try robbing $14 million from the Charlotte Motor Speedway during a race! You don’t have to steal from me, Soderbergh. Just take my money now.

Logan Lucky steals into theaters August 18th.

3.) Death Note

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Thanks to Ghost in the Shell, moviegoers shudder when “anime” and “live-action” are used in the same sentence. Couple that with the fact that, outside Beasts of No Nation, Netflix hasn’t exactly been hitting it out of the park as far as their original films are concerned (their television on the other hand… So good!). Those two things considered, we understand if you’re not high on Adam Wingard’s upcoming Death Note reimagining. We, however, maintain optimism that the man who brought us You’re Next, The Guest, and the underappreciated Blair Witch sequel, will do the hit anime justice. Because, if he doesn’t, that’ll put a damper on Kong vs. Godzilla.

Death Note falls into your Netflix queue August 25th.

SEPTEMBER

1.) IT

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In the 90’s, Stephen King’s cherished novel was made into a television miniseries starring Tim Curry as the iconic killer clown. Now, over twenty years later, the scaring source material is finally receiving its big screen dues, only this time Bill Skarsgard is dawning the red and white makeup. And while Mama wasn’t one of our favorite horror movies of 2013, it’s a solid step above par. As long as Director Andrés Muschietti can nail the tone and let his young, talented cast take care of the rest, IT could become a Halloween staple. Not to mention the first trailer broke the YouTube record for most views in a single day. Clearly we’re not the only ones hyped.

IT crawls into a theater near you September 8th.

2.) Kingsman: The Golden Circle

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Director Matthew Vaughn first sent up the superhero genre with Kickass, based on the little-known comic centered around a group of kids who come together dressed as superheroes to fight crime. After making more of a traditional superhero flick in X-Men: First Class, Vaughn set his sights on similarly small ‘Kingsman. Now we’re getting the sequel. Not only is Kingsman: The Golden Circle reuniting Vaughn with beloved cast members from the first film, but it’s also introducing the likes of Halle Berry, Jeff Bridges, Channing Tatum, and Julianne Moore as the villain. If those names alone don’t get your blood pumping, nothing will.

Kingsman: The Golden Circle explodes into theaters September 22nd.

3.) American Made

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American Made has intrigued us ever since we learned that Tom Cruise was attached to star as real life U.S. commercial pilot-turned-drug-smuggler-turned-DEA-informant Barry Seal. It’s an insane story and one definitely worthy of the silver screen treatment and Cruise’s talents. Not long after, Doug Liman joined to direct. Liman previously directed Cruise in the understated sci-fi thriller Edge of Tomorrow and also directed The Bourne Identity as well as Mr. & Mrs. Smith. So something like American Made seems right in his wheelhouse. Adding to the hype was the equally bonkers trailer that dropped today which perfectly encapsulates the insanity of this high-stakes dramedy.

American Made flies into theaters September 29th.

OCTOBER

1.) Blade Runner 2049

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For sheer quantity, October is our most anticipated month remaining and it starts off with the much-desired sequel to the sci-fi classic Blade Runner. Imaginatively titled, Blade Runner 2049 brings back Ridley Scott (Alien, Blade Runner) as executive producer and Hampton Fancher as screenwriter. The the main attractions, however, are Ryan Gosling as the star and Director Denis Villeneuve, who is currently blazing one of the hottest streaks in Hollywood with Prisoners, Sicario, and Arrival. Then there’s the cinematography. Blade Runner has a specific visual style so it only makes sense to once again pair Villeneuve with legendary cinematographer Roger Deakins (The Shawshank Redeption, No Country for Old Men), who was previously lit both Prisoners and Sicario. This film is bringing back all the right people and tossing in some of the freshest talent around. We can’t wait to see the result.

Blade Runner 2049 hits theaters October 6th.

2.) Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri

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Martin McDonagh is one of the most talented storytellers in Hollywood today. The writer-director’s films, much like Quentin Tarantino’s, bear a distinctive, auteurist style that similarly infuses hyper violence with dark, edgy humor and center on quirky, crime-based narratives. McDonagh also casts his films well. In the case of ‘Three Billboards,’ Frances McDormand stars as a mother who wages an all-out war against the local police after months of failing to make any headway in the case of her daughter’s murder. The equally charismatic Woody Harrelson co-stars as the chief of the aforementioned police force and Sam Rockwell as his second-in-command. In a market saturated by established IP’s, McDonagh is a force of originality and a breath of fresh air.

Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri starts playing in theaters October 13th.

3.) Mother!

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The Hollywood marketing machine has a tendency to overshare footage from upcoming films. Whether through multiple trailers, television spots, posters, prologues, early behind the scenes, studios want to make sure you know exactly what you’re in for ahead of time. This has become so much the norm that films like Mother! almost seem revolutionary. We know almost nothing about it (although the film is still a few months out so there’s still plenty of time to ruin it). All we have to go off are a few tasty nuggets of info. The first comes in the form of the darkly alluring poster (see right). Next is that the film will tell the story of a couple whose “relationship is tested” after “uninvited guests” arrive, “disrupting their tranquil existence” and that it stars Jennifer Lawrence and Javier Bardem. We also know that it’s directed by Darren Aronofsky (Requiem for a Dream, Black Swan) who intends for his film to be a psychological thriller, a genre he has proven skilled in. It’s not a lot to go off but if you ask us, it’s more than enough to secure our tickets.

Mother! makes birth in theaters October 13th.

4.) God Particle

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Last year saw the release of 10 Cloverfield Lane, the surprise second film in the Cloverfield universe which re-ignited the franchise. Originally, a third film was scheduled for release less than a year later in February of this year. It was pushed back, however, to October and has found its way onto our list. 10 Cloverfield Lane, though taking place in the universe of the first film, distinguished itself by taking the approach of a slow-burning psychological thriller. Some deft direction as well as an unnerving performance by John Goodman elevated it above our expectations. J.J. Abrams returns to produce God Particle, which also sets its self a part by taking place aboard a space station while the live-in astronauts fight for survival with reality warping around them. The fresh faced Julius Onah will direct the established talents of Gugu Mbatha-Raw, Daniel Bruhl, and David Oyelowo. We’re can’t wait to see if and how Onah takes advantage of this hard-core science fiction idea.

God Particle lands in theaters October 17th.

5.) Saw: Legacy

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We know how dopey this looks. Saw is (no pun indented) a dead franchise that hasn’t put out a good film in a very long time. But we still have nightmares about Billy the puppet and deep down we’ve been yearning for the days where Halloween meant another Saw movie! Maybe we’re just suckers for the genre. Or, maybe, we’re just excited to see brothers Peter and Michael Spierig (Daybreakers, Predestination) take a shot at the series. Their films don’t always hit like they’re supposed to but the duo always bring their A game in terms of creativity and originality. Hopefully they’re the spark that revives R-rated slashers at the box office!

Saw: Legacy starts playing games October 27th.

NOVEMBER

1.) Thor: Ragnarok

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Thor: Ragnarok is not only our most anticipated movie down the back half of 2017 but it’s our most anticipated movie of the year, period. It looks to be taking galactic elements from the establish MCU mythos and mixing them in with bits and pieces of Planet Hulk, which is some of the most fun you can have reading a comic book. Then you get a guy like Taika Waititi (What We Do in the Shadows, Hunt for the Wilderpeople) to direct and spin it with his unique brand of humor. The addition of Jeff Goldblum and Cate Blanchett as the villain are two brilliant cherries on top. We haven’t even mentioned the fact we’re going to see Doctor Strange interact with Thor and Hulk on the big screen! It’s as if though rock n roll itself materialized into a deliciously kickass comic book romp!

Thor: Ragnarok rocks into theaters November 3rd.

2.) Justice League

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Admittedly, we were not fans of Man of Steel, Batman v. Superman: Dawn of Justice, or Suicide Squad (see our in-depth thoughts and ranking of the DCEU films here). But Wonder Woman blew past our expectations (catch our review here). In light of recent success, we’re more willing to give Justice League a chance. Besides, the casting of our main heroes thus far has been pitch perfect and we can’t wait to see Jason Momoa’s take on Aquaman. Hopefully this film does well and the DC Extended Universe expands further into some of their deeper-cut mythology so we can see some of it come to life on the silver screen. Isn’t that every geek’s dream?

Justice League swoops into theaters November 17th.

3.) Coco

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In Pixar we trust. It’s that simple. Their films eventually wind up on everybody’s “most anticipated movies” list of whatever year. They’re that good. And even after taking a dump with Cars 2, the studio has consistently proven they know how to effectively tell an emotionally compelling story capable of reaching the hearts of viewers of all ages (who among us hasn’t cried watching a Pixar film?). And despite the increase in sequels the studio has put out over the last few years, they’ve still shown with films as recent as Inside Out that they want to expands viewers’ imaginations with creative, original material. Such is the case with Coco and we can’t wait to have our minds blown.

Coco starts playing its tune November 22nd.

DECEMBER

1.) The Shape of Water

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Guillermo del Toro is a filmmaker who isn’t afraid of taking risks and as a powerhouse of imagination, he’s made a career out of doing just that. Of course risk opens the door to potential missteps as much as it does to success. Del Toro has had his fair share of both. However, from what we know so far, The Shape of Water is (pun intended) shaping up to be one of the filmmaker’s most exciting endeavors yet. Star Doug Jones (who is also featured prominently in del Toro’s two Hellboy flicks) described the film as a Cold War-era romance between the last creature of a near-extinct [aquatic?] race (Jones) and a woman (Sally Hawkins) who discovers him held captive inside a secret, American laboratory. Also featuring one of our favorites in Michael Shannon, The Shape of Water could be the throwback to del Toro’s days of Pan’s Labyrinth that, I think we can all agree, we’ve been waiting for.

The Shape of Water takes shape December 8th.

2.) The Disaster Artist

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Tommy Wiseau’s The Room is widely considered the worst movie ever made (if you’ve been fortunate or misfortunate enough to see it, then you probably understand why). A decade after its release, Actor Greg Sestero wrote a book chronicling both Wiseau’s embarrassing failure through the system as well as Sestero’s own experiences on set.  From all accounts, it’s a hilarious, riveting read. Thankfully, Director and Star James Franco knows we don’t like to read, so he’s turning the book into a movie and we can’t imagine a more perfect fit for this material. And get a load of the cast: James Franco, Zac Efron, Zoey Deutch, Alison Brie, Bryan Cranston, Kristen Bell, Dave Franco, Sharon Stone, Adam Scott, and Seth Rogen. Need we say more?

The Disaster Artist will attempt to be a movie December 8th.

3.) Star Wars Episode VIII: The Last Jedi

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We started this list with an obvious pick and that’s how we’re going to end it too. Let’s be honest, the next episode in the Star Wars saga would make this list no matter who was behind the camera. That said, we feel especially safe knowing that it’s Rian Johnson. The man has proven he knows good storytelling, having written and directed films like Brick and Looper. He’s also directed some of the best episodes that Breaking Bad had to offer. Then of course there’s the stress-inducing levels of anticipation moviegoers have for finding out about Ray’s lineage. And let’s not forget we’ll finally get to hear Luke Skywalker talk for the first time in nearly 35 years. What’s he been up to, I wonder?

Star Wars Episode VIII: The Last Jedi sparks its saber December 15th.

That’s our list of the most anticipated movies remaining this year! What do you all think? And what movies are you most looking forward to? Drop into the comments section below and let us know!

The storied histories of the ‘Wonder Woman’ movie

comicsIt’s just beginning its theatrical release and already there is a lot of history behind the new Wonder Woman movie. For starters, there’s the story behind the titular heroine herself. Diana Prince of Themyscira first debuted back in 1942 as the creation of one William Marston, an American psychologist and inventor of the polygraph machine (think Wonder Woman’s Lasso of Truth).

That was 75 years ago. Since then, Wonder Woman has become one of the most iconic and influential superheroes of all time (joining Superman and Batman as a founding member of the Justice League and one-third of DC Comics’ so-called “Holy Trinity”). She even had her own television show starring Lynda Carter back in the late 1970s. Though despite these successes, the Amazon Princess hasn’t been able to break into the movie business until now.

It is fortuitous then that the responsibility of lyndabringing Wonder Woman to life on the big screen should fall to Patty Jenkins, who’s had difficulties of her own trying to make it in Hollywood. And though Jenkis directed Charlize Theron to her first Academy Award in Monster (Jenkins’ first film), the director has not made a movie since. That was fourteen years ago.

Now flash forward a decade. Though Wonder Woman is still a few years out, Hollywood is proliferated by superheroes. Marvel has struck box office gold by bringing their comic book characters together on the silver screen. They’re experiencing so much success, in fact, that now every studio is grasping at straws for some semblance of a cinematic universe and Marvel’s “Distinguished Competition” over at DC and Warner Bros. is no exception.

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Enter Zack Snyder, who at this point has established himself as a visionary filmmaker with films like the Dawn of the Dead remake, 300, and Watchmen. WB has brought Snyder on to direct the Superman reboot Man of Steel and to establish what he would later deem the “DC Extended Universe” (or DCEU for short).

Man of Steel ultimately crushed at the box office, but Snyder’s film was divisive among fans and critics. Over the next few years Warner Bros. continued to build their universe with Batman v. Superman: Dawn of Justice and Suicide Squad. Though financial successes, neither film put up the boffo numbers that Warner Bros. executives were hoping for and both films were critically panned. To make matters worse, a myriad of potential writers and directors were signing onto then leaving future DCEU projects. Suddenly, the skies were not so blue for the House of the Big Blue Boy Scout.

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Now, standing at the edge of oblivion, a hero emerges. Not only is Patty Jenkins’ second film the first DCEU entry to earn a fresh rating on the Tomatometer (60%), but it’s blown past expectations earning a 93%. Critics and early audiences obviously love Wonder Woman but will this be a case of too little, too late?

It’s a story 75 years in the making and it’s still not over. How will Wonder Woman fare at the box office after three disappointing DCEU outings? Will the combined popularity of the storied Amazon and the underutilized talent of a neglected superstar be enough to accomplish what no man has yet to achieve? Only time will tell.

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Wonder Woman hits theaters today. You can catch our video review here!