Transformers: The Last Knight – Trailer #3

So following the release of the latest trailer for the umpteenth Transformers movie which is set to be released this year, director Michael Bay claims that there are plans to produce 14 more films in the franchise…14?!

Whilst you digest that horrific news, here’s the new trailer for Transformers: The Last Knight, which features Mark Wahlberg, Anthony Hopkins, some cheesy lines and a load of robots making lots of noise. There’s 14 more of these to come…

Transformers: The Last Knight is set to be released this June in the UK

Thor: Ragnarok – Trailer

Today we were given a sneak peak into the third Thor movie, Ragnarok. But it seems to have raised a number of questions – Thor a slave warrior? Hulk and enemy? Thor with short hair? JEFF GOLDBLUM?!

Among Jeff and of course the returning Chris Hemsworth, Cate Blanchett joins the Marvel party as the villainous Hela with Benedict Cumberbatch’s Doctor Strange set to make some form of appearance.

From indie director Taika Waititi, Thor: Ragnarok is set to be the third Marvel movie of the year when it comes out this October following the summer releases of Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 and Spider-Man: Homecoming.

Check out the trailer below:

 

All 16 Disney Classics Getting the Live-Action Treatment

Following the release of ‘Beauty and the Beast’ last month and my blog entry questioning whether the live-action remake was necessary, here is a complete list of all Disney classics getting the live-action gloss:

The Lion King – Possibly the most beloved Disney movie is set to be remade by Jungle Book director, Jon Favreau. Donald Glover will voice Simba, with James Earl Jones reprising his role as Mufasa.

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Pinocchio – Daniel Hedges, who wrote the screenplay for ‘What’s Eating Gilbert Grape?’, is working on a slightly darker, live-action remake based on the 1883 novel of the wooden boy who comes to life. Guillermo Del Toro has been working on a stop-motion version of the movie, while Ron Howard has been rumoured to direct Warner Bros’ take on it, with Robert Downey Jr. playing Gepetto.

Aladdin – Guy Ritchie is in talks to direct this remake, similar to the original. There’s also suggestion there will be a separate movie titled ‘Genies’, dedicated to the background behind the Genie – a difficult role to fulfil following Robin Williams’ portrayal in the 1992 original.

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The Little Mermaid – Not much has been mentioned about this one other than Broadway legend, Lin-Manuel Miranda teaming up with original Disney songwriter Alan Menken to recreate the songs that featured in the animated version of the movie.

Dumbo – Tim Burton, who already has experience when it comes to Disney remakes following ‘Alice in Wonderland’, is set to direct with Eva Green and Danny DeVito also signed up to feature. Colin Farrell is also rumoured to feature in some capacity with ‘Transformers’ writer Ehren Kruger behind the story.

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Cruella – Emma Stone is set to portray the fur-loving villain in this origin story behind the ‘101 Dalmations’ character. ‘Mozart in the Jungle’ co-creator, Alex Timbers, will be directing this one.

Night On Bald Mountain – This one will be a little unknown to some people but it’s actually a remake of a sequence in the musical classic, ‘Fantasia’.

The Jungle Book 2 – Following the success of the 2016 live-action remake, Jon Favreau is set to direct the sequel to the Disney classic after last year’s success. Writer Justin Marks and Neel Sethi, who played Mowgli, are both also set to return with the release date considered to be sometime in 2019.

Maleficent 2 – Another successful Disney remake/adaptation was 2014’s ‘Maleficent’ and like ‘The Jungle Book’, is set for a sequel, with Angelina Jolie returning as the wicked sorceress who originated from ‘Sleeping Beauty’.

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Peter Pan – Rather conveniently, the man behind 2016’s remake of ‘Pete’s Dragon’, David Lowery, will be directing the live-action rebrand of ‘Peter Pan’. The real-life version of the boy who never grows up is set for release next year and leads us on nicely to our next entry.

Tinker Bell – Peter’s beloved fairy companion is getting her own spin-off movie, with Reese Witherspoon playing the lead role.

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Winnie the Pooh – The honey-loving bear is set to get the live-action gloss with a story based on an adult Christopher Robin, and will be directed by ‘Spotlight’ writer and director, Tom McCarthy. There is also to be a biopic based on the man behind Pooh, AA Milne, released next year starring Margot Robbie and Domhnall Gleeson.

Prince Charming – Many Disney movies’ focus is on a princess in some capacity, but this time that will be changing to the male side of things. It’s unclear however as to whether the Prince Charming in question is based on the character from ‘Cinderella’ or ‘Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs’.

Rose Red – Again, this is a take on an alternative character from a famous Disney movie. The first movie in fact – ‘Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs’. This time though, the focus is on Rose Red, the sister of Snow White who works with the dwarves to save her when she famously bites the poisonous apple.

Mulan – The live-action remake of the 1998 original is set to be released in November next year and Niki Caro is rumoured to be directing but there have been no suggestions as to who will be playing the lead role as of yet.

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Sword in the Stone – ‘Game of Thrones’ writer, Bryan Cogman is penning the script for this one. Guy Ritchie’s ‘King Arthur: Legend of the Sword’, which is released later this year, also shares a later affiliation to the story of the lead character.

It – Trailer

Are you ready to be scared shitless? Then you best check out the trailer for the new movie adaptation of Stephen King’s ‘It’, which gives us an insight into what promises to be one of the scariest movies of the year.

Cool fact – the trailer for the 2017 movie mirrors that of the 1990 mini TV series shot for shot and it’s equally as creepy, if not more so.

If you hate clowns, it’s probably best to stay indoors when ‘It’ is released 7th September – but for now, here’s a taster of what’s to come:

Spider-Man: Homecoming – Trailer

The new trailer for the latest member of the Avengers squad dropped today, giving us a better look at Michael Keaton as villain, The Vulture as well as the father/son like relationship between Peter Parker and Tony Stark.

Brit Tom Holland, who we got a brief glimpse into the background of in Captain America: Civil War, returns as schoolboy turned Avenger, Spider-Man, attempting to balance his normal life with that of a superhero, under the guidance of Iron Man (Robert Downey Jr.)

Watch the latest trailer for Spider-Man – Homecoming below, with the movie set to be released 7th July.

Justice League – Trailer

The new trailer for Justice League has dropped and has everyone scratching their head wondering where the hell Superman is?

Bruce Wayne AKA Batman (Ben Affleck) assembles his team of extraordinary beings including Aquaman (Jason Mamoa), Wonder Woman (Gal Gadot) and the Flash (Ezra Miller), in order to face the world’s latest threat.

But the latest insight into one of the year’s most anticipated movies has left a lot of fans wondering where Clark Kent/Superman (Henry Cavill) is. He is being credited with a role on IMDB and a brief shot of Lois Lane (Amy Adams) suggests that he will be making some form of appearance.

Nevertheless, enjoy the latest trailer for Justice League below:

The Problem With Disney Reboots

The release of the live-action remake of Beauty and the Beast perhaps wasn’t greeted with the most sparkling reviews it was originally anticipated. It was by no means a bad watch – it looked fantastic, the songs were beautifully performed and it held a pleasant level of charm. But it certainly lacked that special something that I was hoping for, so much so that all I wanted to do when I came out of the cinema was to go home and watch the original and fall in love with it all over again. I’m sure that was the case for a number of people and I imagine that they will also agree with the idea that no matter how good these reboots are, they will never outdo or be loved any more than their animated originals.

Beauty and the Beast of course isn’t the first Disney live-action reboot we’ve been treated to with The Jungle Book and Cinderella released within the last couple of years and we also have a whole host of remakes coming up including The Lion King, Mulan and Dumbo to name a few. In fact, there aren’t many of the iconic Disney movies that aren’t getting the live-action treatment so why are so many of these movies being remade when everyone knows they will never better the original version? Will the new adaptations of these films be rewatched over and over like their animated counterparts are now years after their original release? I don’t think so.

There’s always financial motivation behind reboots and sequels, and there’s no doubt Beauty and the Beast will absolutely rake it in, but you hope that it’s more in an attempt to bring these outdated products into the 21st century and submerge children into a more diverse movie atmosphere. That said, let’s delve deeper into Beauty and the Beast – headed by celebrated feminist actress, Emma Watson. She plays Belle, who was billed as having a job. She doesn’t – she’s an inventor, without pay, so she has a hobby. That’s fine, but what’s her proudest invention? A washing machine…I’ll just leave that there. She may also make out as if she “is not a princess” when all the supernatural furniture attempts to drape her in the finest rags, only to display the iconic yellow dress during the ballroom scene nearer the end and looking absolutely splendent, ultimately contradicting her anti-princess approach.

Now think about the story of Beauty and the Beast as well. Ultimately the message is that inside beauty carries far more power than aesthetically so is the ending of the story, in which the prince’s curse is lifted and his good looks return, truly a positive moral? Granted, these issues are particularly picky and if too much were to be changed, the story would lose a lot of its origin and we’re then talking about a different movie entirely. Nevertheless, the updating of diversity isn’t necessarily as blatant as the producers and many others affiliated with the film have made out.

Moving on to a slightly more obvious issue – live action and the use of CGI. There’s no doubt that the rereleases of Beauty and the Beast, as well as The Jungle Book and Cinderella, look visually stunning. All used CGI in the correct way, musical sequences were beautifully portrayed and generally, they were all enjoyable movies. But there’s something about animation and Disney animation in particular, that offers that something special and more appealing on a visual basis. Take Cogsworth and Lumiere in Beauty and the Beast, the beloved clock and candlestick that are brought to life. There’s a much more potent appeal for the animated version of these characters than the CGI adaptations. They’re more whimsical and slightly less sinister looking and ultimately just a lot pleasant to look at.

Again, are the CGI variations of these characters going to be remembered and treasured as much as their animated predecessors? You wouldn’t think so. In fact, think of the original animations that Disney is still making now – Tangled, Frozen, Zootopia, any Pixar creation. These will still be watched in five/ten years’ time because of the brilliant animation, the new Beauty and the Beast probably won’t. And I imagine the same will be said upon the upcoming spate of Disney live-action reboots but I suppose that’s for the new generation to decide and not an old traditionalist such as myself.

Captain Underpants: The First Epic Movie – Trailer

Here’s the new trailer for this summer’s Captain Underpants (as presented to by leading actors, Ed Helms & Kevin Hart).

Based on Dave Pilkey’s much loved children’s book series, this animation follows the story of two school kids who hypnotise their principal, turning him into their comic book creation, Captain Underpants.

The trailer looks hilarious, just like the books – so much anticipation for the release of this one!

Captain Underpants hits UK cinemas 28th July

Beauty and the Beast – Review

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Diversity is the main component that you take away from the new live action remake of ‘Beauty and the Beast’. After 26 years since the original Disney animated version was released, the reformation of one of Disney’s most beloved creations has certainly been brought into the 21st century. But like its fellow recent live action remakes, ‘Beauty and the Beast’ fails to live up to its animated predecessor.

Emma Watson plays Belle, an outcast of her village for not being a typical girl but instead she enjoys reading and has a keen eye for a new invention – a fresh trait of the character and the first indication of diversity in the movie.

When her father, Maurice (Kevin Kline), is captured on his travels and locked away by the Beast in his castle, Belle seeks to rescue him, only to take his place in the prison. Once a handsome prince, the Beast is seeking true love to overturn a spell cast on him by an enchantress for his selfish ways as well as a number of household appliances who were once bubbly human beings.

There’s no doubting the image of the film is captivating. The CGI is done magnificently and as a result, there’s a beautiful artificial look to the movie. On top of that, there are moments throughout that allude back to the original animation, whether it’s the score in the background or just something as simple as a subtle facial expression from the Beast.

The problem with the movie, and it was the same with the similar remake of Jungle Book, is that the original animated version of the movie will never be outdone or emulate just how much they were loved by audiences of all ages. Of course, a lot changes in 26 years, and there’s no disputing that creating an updated version to match today’s social approaches is a positive factor. Most notable is Josh Gad’s Le Fou, sidekick of Luke Evans’ Gaston, who has caused much of a stir for appearing to be gay, although very subtly indeed and completely blown out of proportion on a political level. The changing portrayal of a Disney princess is perhaps more important as there seems to be a lot more to Belle than just a bog standard girl with typical female attributes – she certainly has a lot more to offer on a humanitarian level this time around. Two interracial couples that are revealed towards the end of the movie are also offering an insight into the movie’s diverse awareness.

Other positive aspects of the movie are the performances with Emma Watson putting in a solid performance as Belle and a number of pleasing cameos from the likes of Emma Thompson, Ian McKellen, Ewan McGregor and Stanley Tucci. Arguably the best performance of the bunch however is Evans’ portrayal of Gaston – strong and confident, with an edge of humour about him, whilst also carrying a dark atmosphere at times. They all also perform exceedingly well during the much-loved musical numbers, which are beautifully depicted.

‘Beauty and the Beast’ is an enjoyable watch and has many promising elements to it, but it is always performing in the shadow of its original, which has become so iconic for a generation. Referring again to ‘The Jungle Book’ and also to Kenneth Branagh’s ‘Cinderella’, they were never going to out-do their predecessors so it almost begs the question as to why make them as you come out of the movie just wanting to watch the original.

Despicable Me 3 – Latest Trailer

One of this summer’s most anticipated movies is the third instalment of the Despicable Me series.

The gang return as they meet Gru’s long lost brother…Dru (also voiced by Steve Carell) who unlike Gru is still entangled in the criminal world.

Naturally, the trailer looks hilarious so check it out below:

Despicable Me 3 is set to be released on 30th June this year.