Films

by Dan Kampling | Thursday, July 17 | Posted in Film

Three years ago, 20th Century Fox surprised audiences and fans alike with their reboot of the Planet of the Apes saga, which utilized highly realistic CGI effects to portray the ape characters, as opposed to make-up effects. This helped it to be more acceptable to modern audiences, whom feel that the original material is heavily outdated with its effects, along with the nuclear war subtext portraying just what could happen if human beings slumped into the simian state.

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by Jeremy Webster | Thursday, July 17 | Posted in Film

When it comes to demon possession and exorcism films, William Friedkin's seminal 1973 offering The Exorcist casts a long, long shadow. Outside of the usual exploitation markets, it's a wonder these types of films still turn up at all.

Deliver Us from Evil is a film squarely in that post-Exorcist vein and, while it doesn't completely to escape that shadow, and has some curious issues of its own, it at least manages to hit the notes it needs to in mostly effective ways.

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William Friedkin's 1977 masterpiece to play July 14 and 15.

by Jeremy Webster | Thursday, July 10 | Posted in Film

On Monday, July 14, Wichita will not only get an opportunity to watch a rarely screened classic of a film, but will also get a chance to chat with its Academy Award winning director via Skype as Leif Jonker's Wichita Big Screen Initiative brings William Friedkin's Sorcerer to the Warren Oldtown Theatre and Grille.

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by Dan Kampling | Thursday, July 10 | Posted in Film

I know there have been cases of asking Oscar winners to give up their awards due to bad performances, but has there ever been a case where we wanted a revoked Oscar nomination? If there hasn't, I'm putting out a call to have Melissa McCarthy's nomination for Bridesmaids to be rendered null and void so that she can never have the title of "Oscar nominated actress." What is the cause of this sentencing? Why it's Tammy, McCarthy's recent attempt at being comedic by relying solely on her weight and ability to be unlikeable and unfunny all at the same time.

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by Dan Kampling | Thursday, July 10 | Posted in Film

I know there have been cases of asking Oscar winners to give up their awards due to bad performances, but has there ever been a case where we wanted a revoked Oscar nomination? If there hasn't, I'm putting out a call to have Melissa McCarthy's nomination for Bridesmaids to be rendered null and void so that she can never have the title of "Oscar nominated actress." What is the cause of this sentencing? Why it's Tammy, McCarthy's recent attempt at being comedic by relying solely on her weight and ability to be unlikeable and unfunny all at the same time.

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William Friedkin's 1977 masterpiece to play July 14 and 15.

by Jeremy Webster | Thursday, July 10 | Posted in Film

On Monday, July 14, Wichita will not only get an opportunity to watch a rarely screened classic of a film, but will also get a chance to chat with its Academy Award winning director via Skype as Leif Jonker's Wichita Big Screen Initiative brings William Friedkin's Sorcerer to the Warren Oldtown Theatre and Grille.

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by Jeremy Webster | Thursday, July 3 | Posted in Film

Better and more capable critics than myself have been saying Transformers: Age of Extinction is terrible for, as of when this review will appear, about two weeks now. Many of the reviews are colorfully derogatory and are, honestly, more entertaining than the two hour, 45 minute spectacle itself.

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by Jeremy Webster | Friday, June 27 | Posted in Film

Jon Favreau is an extremely talented guy who's received accolades for his acting, directing and writing over the years. Viewers would recognize him as Tony Stark's driver and bodyguard Happy Hogan in the Iron Man series, but he was also working behind the camera as director of the first two entries in that franchise, the first of which was the film that put Marvel Studios on the map in the first place.

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by Dan Kampling | Friday, June 27 | Posted in Film

For nearly a decade, the Tony Award winning jukebox musical Jersey Boys, chronicling the music career of Frankie Valli and the Four Seasons, has enchanted audiences worldwide. And now, the musical will be able to reach a wider audience with the release of its film adaptation helmed by Hollywood legend Clint Eastwood.

As with many musical adaptations, Jersey Boys isn't making as of an big impression at the box office as it did on Broadway, but don't let that detail scare you away from something that is the feel-good experience of the summer.

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by Dan Kampling | Thursday, June 19 | Posted in Film

Two years ago, it must have been great to be Seth MacFarlane. After establishing his brand of humor on the animated series Family Guy, he managed to make his feature film debut with Ted, a premise so ridiculous to make some believe the trailers had to have been a joke, but the joke was on them when the film managed to gross over $500 million at the box office. Of course, when you make a film of that stature, the studio allows a filmmaker free reign on whatever their next project shall be.

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by Jeremy Webster | Thursday, June 19 | Posted in Film

How to Train Your Dragon 2 is a rare film in the animated family fare genre — one that has elements that are not only included for everyone in the family, but will connect and resonate with them as well.

This sequel to Dreamworks' 2010 hit finds inventor Hiccup (Jay Baruchel) and his Viking clan at peace with dragons, the two species coexisting and cooperating in their community.

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by Dan Kampling | Thursday, June 12 | Posted in Film

Well, there comes a time in every critic's career that he has to review a Tom Cruise movie. It can a bit of a conflict, since Cruise has a reputation built up by the media by how he acts, along with being one of the highest paid actors in Hollywood. Thankfully, for my first Cruise review, it's actually something decent that is a cut above another Mission Impossible type of action film.

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by Jeremy Webster | Thursday, June 12 | Posted in Film

The Fault in our Stars, adapted from the popular novel by John Green, seems to point to a quieter wave of "young adult" genre adaptations on the horizon. Given the continual strike-outs of all the sci-fi and fantasy nonsense that isn't The Hunger Games or Twilight, that's just as well.

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by Dan Kampling | Thursday, June 5 | Posted in Film

The latest film from acclaimed writer-director James Gray taps into the risk, idealism and struggle of coming to the strange new Land of Opportunity with the release of The Immigrant, which premiered over a year ago at the Cannes Film Festival and has been in wide release for about a half a month now.

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by Jeremy Webster | Thursday, June 5 | Posted in Film

Disney's Maleficent, essentially a live action re-imagining of the studio's 1959 animated classic Sleeping Beauty, goes with a dark, moody oppressiveness rare and unusual in the studio's recent history, eschewing the studio's normally polar opposite conceptualizations of good and evil to something that, by their standards, is far more nuanced. The result is a modern fairy tale well worth the effort to experience.

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by Dan Kampling | Thursday, May 29 | Posted in Film

Is it really two wrongs that make a right? It's a phrase that seems to be hardly proven right in the film business, as you're truly only as good as your last film. In this case, we have director Bryan Singer, who's made two critically panned films, Superman Returns and Jack the Giant Slayer, and, when word got back that he was limping his way back to the franchise he helped initiate over a decade ago, it was a plea of desperation to have a hit film under his belt.

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by Jeremy Webster | Thursday, May 29 | Posted in Film

There aren't really enough words to relate how shitty this film is.

In my time as a film critic and essayist, I have frequently encountered the curious fan base of Adam Sandler. I am often gentle-voiced with them and adopt an attitude of sympathetic understanding.

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by Dan Kampling | Thursday, May 22 | Posted in Film

"For most of us, the dream of becoming a champion remains a fantasy. But for a special few, it is very much a reality. We cheer them. We live through them. Athletes are our last warriors. My job is to make their dreams come true. My name is Arliss Michaels. I represent athletes. These are my stories." Cue Dusty Springfield's "I Only Want to Be with You." Week after week, Robert Whul made this statement on the HBO comedy series Arliss.

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by Jeremy Webster | Thursday, May 22 | Posted in Film

With 50 years and over 30 films under his belt, the titular monstrosity of director Gareth Edwards' reboot Godzilla has, throughout his career, been subject to the highs and lows of the Japanese Kaiju subgenre. In 1954's Gojira he was a metaphor for the horror and destructive potential of war and nuclear weaponry. Subsequent years saw him become a sort of representative of Japanese national pride, fighting off threats from other monsters and the occasional alien in defense of his adopted homeland.

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by Dan Kampling | Thursday, May 15 | Posted in Film

It's really tough to get older, especially when you're in the movies, and particularly if you're an actor like Seth Rogen. What we have here is a prototypical typecast actor who always has to have the word "stoner" in his character's description, even when playing a beloved character like the Green Hornet, who had no business being played by an actor with that resume.

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