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Spider-Man 2 (2004) – Review

3 1/2 Stars

Director Sam Raimi’s visual touchstones are in greater abundance in this deeper, darker sequel that further complicates the life of young Peter Parker. The exuberance of discovery that made the first film an instant classic is missing here, but in exchange the special effects have been ramped up and the characters given emotional depth.
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Oz the Great and Powerful (2013) – Review

3 Stars

The majestic world of L. Frank Baum’s Oz is visited with mixed results in the prequel film helmed by Spiderman director Sam Raimi. The story begins in Kansas in 1905 where struggling illusionist Oz (James Franco) is working the dust bowl circuit with a roving troupe of carnies. Oz’s half-hearted magic tricks are barely able to conceive the fact he is a sub par performer whose interest are more inclined to womanizing than onstage professionalism. Fleeing from an enraged jilted husband, Ozwald boards a hot air balloon that sails right into a whirling tornado. Things brighten visually and from a narrative standpoint from here on.
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Podcast EP194: Oz The Great and Powerful, Dead Man Down Predictions, News, Trailer

Episode one-hundred and ninety-four. Join hosts Trevor and Jason as they discuss the latest in movie news, box office numbers and trailers.

Box Office Predictions: Dead Man Down
Oz The Great and Powerful

News: Sam Raimi Offers an Evil Dead IV Update
Christopher Nolan to Produce Justice League
Christian Bale to Return as Batman?
Craig Brewer to Direct The Gangster Princess of Beverly Hills
Antoine Fuqua Interested in Ryan Gosling, Bradley Cooper and Jeremy Renner For Boxing Drama Southpaw
Sinister 2’s Coming at Us

TrailerAddict: Disconnect

Box Office Breakdown: March 1-3, 2013

Plus much more, tune in now!

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New Evil Dead Red Band Trailer – So Gory You’ll Blow Chunks

I had my reservations about the remake of this classic, but the more I see the more I’m willing to give it a chance. When I head Diablo Cody was writing on this I was sure it would be a dud, and I do see a little bit of Jennifer’s Body in here, but Cody stunned me with Young Adult. She tends to have great ideas that are badly executed. This doesn’t look so with this new red band trailer, which is chock full of gore and seems to find a good line between the fun of the original and updating a 30 year old low budget horror flick to the slickness of today’s standard. See Evil Dead in theaters April 12, 2013.
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Oz, the Great and Powerful: Expectations after Seeing the Trailer

More than 50 years ago, the technicolor wonder of “The Wizard of Oz” enchanted kids everywhere. Each new generation got to see it anew, with pretty much the same effect. In the ’80s “Return to Oz” reminded everyone of Frank L. Baum’s beloved book, and the interest in Oz renewed.

Will Disney’s release of Sam Raimi’s prequel next spring do the same?

What to Expect

The prequel centers on the Wizard and his unfortunate adventure to OZ. Certainly we would expect to see amazing special effects the same caliber as those that created Dorothy’s tornado in 1939. The trailer hints at it a little, but until moviegoers can see the whole thing for themselves, the jury is still out. Meanwhile, the sets are beautiful to behold, matching Victor Fleming’s original version. But the music and magical creatures leave much to be desired as they’re all quite menacing.

The costumes, as always, are fascinating, which is expected in a fantasy-filled movie. And like “The Avengers” release in 2012, there is no doubt demand for OZ costumes will spike during the 2013 Halloween. Even though the classic movie characters aren’t in the prequel, many may feel inclined to pay them homage. If you want to dress up as your favorite character, Halloween costumes at buycostumes.com are realistic, theatrical-level character costumes.

As with All Prequels

One final item on the list of expectations for this movie is that it stands up to the main requirements of the prequel. It should do an interesting job of explaining all the characters’ origins, right down to how the wicked witch of the west came to be wicked. Disney seems to borrow a little from the book and theatrical production, so there’s not going to be too much of a surprise here beyond the exact nature of what turns her skin green. Anyone wanting to imitate this dramatic transformation will have to consult stage-makeup in the Halloween costumes section at buycostumes.com for the appropriate material.

What this movie is lacking is explaining how the classic characters came to be. The Baum book “The Wizard of OZ” explains the Scarecrow and the Cowardly Lion and, to a certain extent, the Tin Man, but no movie has ever tried to approach this. Truly a disappointment, but Disney has a way of turning every movie they do into a trilogy franchise — maybe that’s in the works for the next round.

Pass on the Cliches, but Go See the Movie

Fans of this fantasy, which has outlived several generations, will no doubt be spouting many cliched phrases while dressing up in costumes and sitting outside movie theaters for a midnight showing of this movie. Despite the cliches and for the fun of the costumes, you should go all the same. It looks like it’s going to be a lot of fun, no matter what.

Author: Bethany Ortiz
Bethany studied culinary arts and later received a Master’s Degree in English Literature. She loves blogging about her adventures in food, and is quick to correct both your tablespoon measurement and your grammar.

Miller’s Crossing (1990) – Review

2 1/2 Stars

There is a word that bests describes the Coen brother’s irish mafia tale, brooding. This beautiful looking film is all style and little substance. There is an awful lot of commotion in Miller’s Crossing, but very little emotion. Set in an unnamed city during the 1920s, a war is about to breakout between the Irish and Italian families. All can be forgiven if a man named Bernie (Tuttoro) is killed. The trouble is Leo (Finney), plans on marrying Bernie’s sister. This doesn’t sit well with Casper (Polito), the bullish Italian leader, who is still smarting from a series of boxing fixes gone awry. Adding to the complicated matter is the fact that Leo’s right-hand man, Tom (Byrne) is sleeping with his fiancee.
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Podcast EP103: The Avengers Predictions Plus Van Helsing, Mummy, Daredevil Reboots

Episode one-hundred and three. Join hosts Jason and Trevor as they discuss the box office weekend of April 27-29, 2012. We give our opening box office weekend predictions for The Avengers and talk movie news Kurtzman and Orci to Reimagine Van Helsing and The Mummy, David James Kelly Rewriting Daredevil Reboot, Sam Raimi to Produce Poltergeist Remake, Universal sues Asylum Over American Battleship, Josh Gad Up for Steve Wozniak Role in Jobs and the Dark Knight Rises trailer. Tune in now!

MP3 Direct Link - Click to play; right click to download.

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Please rate and review us in iTunes, Stitcher, or whatever you use to subscribe and listen with. We need your support and help in getting the word out about this great movie podcast - thanks to all our fans!

‘The Amazing Spiderman’ Launches New Viral Website

The Amazing Spiderman has been walking a thin line between one of the most anticipated and most dreaded summer release, trying to prove itself worthy not only over other summer comic-book blockbusters (The Dark Knight Rises, The Avengers) but also its predecessor. With Sam Raimi’s saga of the famous teenage web-slinger still fresh in everyone’s mind, Sony has gotten creative with its marketing strategy for this summer’s reboot.

WebbedMenace.com hit the internet following the The Amazing Spiderman panel at WonderCon this past weekend. The most prominent feature is a video featuring the film’s Dennis Leary as Capt. Stacy speaking to a cable news team, apparently owned by The Daily Bugle, about the importance of taking down Spiderman. As comic-book fans know The Daily Bugle is run by J. Jonah Jameson, one of Spidey’s most devout haters. “We have a masked criminal roaming our streets, posing as a hero,” Cpt. Stacy reports, “but I ask you, what kind of hero wears a mask?” Judging by the full-trailer released last month, Cpt. Stacy will be Peter Parker’s most vigilant protestor.

The coolest part of the interactive website may be that it also allows fans to report any sightings of the red and blue masked vigilante. The most creative entries are featured in the Spiderman sightings list where site visitors can “view the menace in action.” The accompanying Spiderman “Wanted” poster also comes with a reachable phone number, though it only re-directs you to the website. So keep your eyes peeled for any spandex wearing wall-crawlers in your area.

The Amazing Spiderman starring Andrew Garfield, Emma Stone, and Rhys Ifans, hits theaters July 3.

What do you think of the new Spidey site? Does it make the movie more or less anticipated? Leave your comments below!

The Amazing Spider-Man Web Spinning Trailer

I’ll have to admit that the thought of rehashing Spider-Man from the beginning again is daunting and too soon. This trailer does look good in spite of that. It proves to me that this may be worth another look, and although not spine tingling, it does serve up some excitement. Setting the time frame back before the Raimi films was a smart move, this film seems to shed that world with ease and allow for a similar, but slightly mutated view instead. I also suspected that Andrew Garfield was a bad choice, after viewing this those suspicions have been put to rest. With a voice that fits the character, and the gangly body of a teenage boy that could easily adapt to the gymnastic requirements of being Spider-Man, Garfield seems to play right into the role. Action, suspense, drama and web spinning, what more could you ask for? Emma Stone? She’s in there too.

‘Premium Rush’ Trailer Tries Too Hard – Accidental Sequel to ‘Gleaming the Cube’?

When the Premium Rush trailer first starts it seems very inspired by the look and feel of Sam Raimi’s Spider-Man movies (David Koepp, the writer/director, did write the first Spider-Man). Then we get into the meat of the film and what we have here is an accidental (or maybe Koepp is a big fan) sequel to Gleaming the Cube. Seriously, replace Christian Slater on his skateboard with Joseph Gordon-Levitt on his fixed gear bicycle and they’re almost the same movie. As a matter of fact both trailers go way too over the top in the representation of the films as I’m sure Premium Rush is in noway as exciting as this extremely cut up trailer wants to be. Check ‘em both out below and let us know what you think. Premium Rush releases into theaters January 13, 2012.

iPhone App Users – Premium Rush trailer might no play, sorry.

Top Five Best Superhero Movies

This best superhero movies list features the top superhero films of all time, including only titles that have already released. In order to be included in this top 5 superhero movies list the superhero must have played a prominent role. Author discretion is the final criteria used to distinguish these best superhero films.

5. The Shadow (1994)

Box Office Gross: $32,063,435     Adjusted for 2011: $55,075,469

null Alec Baldwin’s turn in the role of a superhero is one of the best albeit forgotten films in the genera. Surfacing in the summer of 1994 with little fanfare; presumably from audience fatigue after two Batman films, The Rocketeer and a legion of wannabe blockbuster arrived in less than five years. The Shadow separates itself from others in the pack through it’s exquisite production and art design and a detailed period setting in the art-deco friendly 1930’s. The character of Cranston Lamont/ The Shadow originated on radio series almost 80 years ago. Apparently 1990’s audiences weren’t interested in their grandparent’s superhero and left this little seen film to die a quick death at the box-office. In hindsight it’s a entertaining piece of escapist fun with slick direction from Highlander vet Russell Mulcahy, a self deprecating script and a polished look that provides as many visual thrills as the stunning special effects.
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Top 10 Baseball Movies

null10. THE SANDLOT (1993) – This unlikely box-office hit is fondly remembered by children of the nineties and their baby boomer parents. The film is set in the early 60’s and tells the story of a new kid to the neighborhood and his need for acceptance. This eventually comes through his experiences on the sandlot baseball field. Anyone familiar with the plight of retrieving a ball from a neighbor’s backyard will recognize the authenticity director David Evans infuses into this great film. →']);" class="more-link">Continue reading