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Welcome back to the Weekend Warrior, your weekly look at the new movies hitting theaters this weekend, as well as other cool events and things to check out.
This Past Weekend:
While the new movies reigned at the box office this past weekend, both Antoine Fuqua’s The Magnificent Seven (Sony) and the animated Storks (Warner Bros.) didn’t fare nearly as well as our projections, both falling short by about $10 million. The Magnificent Seven, starring Denzel Washington and Chris Pratt, fared decently with $34.7million, which is about the average for Washington’s films, but the fourth highest opening for a Western after last year’s The Revenant, the animated Rango, and Cowboys and Aliens. Storks’ $21.3 million opening wasn’t great compared to other animated September releases with Sony still holding the September opening record with Hotel Transylvania 2, but it should continue to do well with no other animated movies opening for another month. »
- Edward Douglas
MaryAnn’s quick take…
Immensely intense and suspenseful. Disaster filmmaking at its most gripping, yet there is nothing in the least bit exploitive or sensationalized about it. I’m “biast” (pro): nothing
I’m “biast” (con): nothing
I have not read the source material
(what is this about? see my critic’s minifesto)
Wait, what? “Based on a true story of real life heroes”? Wasn’t the Deepwater Horizon that total cluster-you-know-what of incompetence and corporate greed that killed 11 people and spilled an ungodly amount of oil all over the Gulf of Mexico, oil that is still killing seabirds and fish and cute baby dolphins to this day, six years later? Yes, it is. But this is not that story, at least not anymore than it can make some Bp executives look wolfish and blundering (which they well deserve). This movie doesn’t even get into the oil »
- MaryAnn Johanson
Deepwater Horizon review, Tiff ’16.
Deepwater Horizon review
Filmmaker Peter Berg reunites with his Lone Survivor star Mark Wahlberg for another motion picture action/drama based on fact, this time the tradgedy that was the Bp oil disaster in the Gulf Of Mexico back in 2010.
Deepwater Horizon was an oil rig assembled by the company Transocean back in 2001, but leased to British oil company Bp, who were running the rig at the time of the disaster . 126 people were on board the rig when the eruption of drilling mud, methane gas, and water occurred, shortly after 9.45pm local time on 20th April, 2010. Amongst them is Mike Williams (Wahlberg), the key character in this film adaptation of the story, who is joined by a solid ensemble cast including Kurt Russell, »
- Paul Heath
At the end of “Diamonds Are Forever,” audiences cheer when James Bond succeeds in blowing up the giant oil platform the evil Blofeld uses as his base. It’s a spectacular finale, to be sure, though nowhere near as impressive as the real-life destruction wrought in “Deepwater Horizon,” a stunning Hollywood restaging of the explosion that consumed the Transocean deepwater drilling rig on April 20, 2010. Needless to say, no one cheers this time around: We all know that 11 men lost their lives in the accident, and that the ensuing oil spill became the country’s all-time worst ecological disaster. And yet, despite the fact that director Peter Berg presents the action as if everyone in the audience is an engineer, the excitement is undeniable. For a movie in which you can’t follow what’s going on for 75% of the time, “Deepwater Horizon” proves remarkably thrilling — and could well become one »
- Peter Debruge
Peter Berg likes stories about regular people — the kind of people who work on oil rigs and and don’t necessarily relate to on-screen smoothies like James Bond — and for the self-professed “second half” of his directing career, including films like “Lone Survivor,” Berg has started focusing on just that. For his latest film, the fact-based “Deepwater Horizon,” Berg turns his attention to the 2010 oil rig disaster on the eponymous Louisiana drilling platform, with thrilling — and often heart-wrenching — results.
The film follows the rig on its last viable day, as the so-called “bad well” starts collapsing after a series of terrible decisions, systematic breakdowns and just plain old pressure slowly render it not only inoperable, but hugely dangerous. Berg’s frequent star Mark Wahlberg stars as electrician Mike Williams, who leads the film alongside Kurt Russell as the rig’s head honcho, Gina Rodriquez as a whipsmart member of the »
- Kate Erbland
The actor is a believable everyman engineer in a harrowing, courageous account of the 2010 oil rig tragedy – and the corporate greed that caused it
In the safe, sanitised world of the multiplex, where product placement and brand partnerships reign supreme, it’s rare to see a mainstream film with the guts to double as a takedown of a multi-billion dollar company. But, after watching Peter Berg’s surprisingly yet deservedly angry restaging of the 2010 Deepwater Horizon disaster, which caused 11 deaths and the biggest oil spill in history, it’ll take a minor PR miracle to restore the average moviegoer’s faith in Bp.
On paper, Berg is a poor choice for the material. His last film at sea was Battleship, a soulless, swaggering Transformers knock-off based on a board game, and his last with star Mark Wahlberg was the viscerally effective but heavy-handed Navy Seals drama Lone Survivor. He also »
- Benjamin Lee
After all, 1959’s “Ben-Hur” was an Oscar-winning smash that remains beloved. Posters for the Charlton Heston epic proclaimed that the film offered “An entertainment experience of a lifetime,” and its chariot races are still considered to be a high-point in action choreography.
In contrast, the new “Ben-Hur” wasn’t even the “entertainment experience of the third weekend of August.” After debuting to a paltry $11.4 million, it is certain to go down as one of the summer’s biggest flops. “The Bfg” just breathed a huge sigh of relief.
It’s not for lack of trying. When it came to “Ben-Hur,” Paramount and Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer didn’t stint on spectacle. The partners shelled out $100 million to recreate the arena and bring viewers back in time to »
- Brent Lang
Up until recently, when a movie turned out to be a major bomb — not just a financial failure but a symbol of waste, a legend, a stink bomb — there was usually a movie star’s name imprinted on it. The star became part of the movie’s infamy, and he also took on some of the blame. Just think of a folly like “Ishtar” (1987), in which the combined star wallop of Dustin Hoffman and Warren Beatty couldn’t add up to a hill of beans in the desert, or “Battlefield Earth” (2000), which proved that John Travolta in the middle of the Travoltassance couldn’t sell a sci-fi epic that was really an obsequious vanity project. “Heaven’s Gate,” the movie that brought down a movie studio, was the exception that proved the rule: No one really thought of it as a Kris Kristofferson film, but that’s because there was »
- Owen Gleiberman
An adaptation of Vince Flynn’s novel of the same name, American Assassin has entered pre-production at CBS Films and Lionsgate, with Michael Keaton and Dylan O’Brien – who is, thankfully, nearing a full recovery after the severe injury suffered while filming The Maze Runner – already on board.
Stephen Schiff is the scribe attached to adapt Flynn’s source material, chronicling the rise and rise of O’Brien’s Mitch Rapp, an “Arab linguistics who joins the CIA as an assassin after his girlfriend is killed in a terrorist attack. Keaton is playing his reluctant mentor, a Cold War veteran. When the two are enlisted by the CIA to investigate a wave of apparently random attacks on both military and civilian targets, the tracks lead to a mysterious operative intent »
- Michael Briers
All this week, IndieWire will be rolling out our annual Fall Preview, including offerings that span genres, a close examination of some of the year’s biggest breakouts, all the awards contenders you need to know about now and special attention to all the new movies you need to get through a jam-packed fall movie-going season. Check back every day for a new look at the best the season has to offer, and clear your schedule, because we’re going to fill it right up.
“Morgan,” September 2
Stepping out of your father’s shadow is never easy when said father is beloved and successful, but it’s got to be especially difficult when it’s Ridley Scott. Sitting in the director’s chair for his very first feature, Luke Scott looks to bring the kind of white-knuckle tension and mysterious head games to the sci-fi genre as his father has done time and time again. »
- Kate Erbland, Zack Sharf, Steve Greene, David Ehrlich, Graham Winfrey and William Earl
If you count “Battleship” among your favorite movies of the last few years and are inordinately excited for the upcoming “Ouija” sequel, prepare for good news. The Tracking Board is reporting that 20th Century Fox is remaking “Clue” along with Hasbro, most likely to the dismay of fans of the 1985 adaptation — a cult classic that, whatever its flaws, was certainly ahead of the board-game-adaptation curve.
Read More: ‘Ouija: Origin of Evil’ Trailer: Something Tells Me This 1965-Set Horror Prequel Isn’t Into Something Good
Josh Feldman will produce from Hasbro’s end, with Daria Cercek of Fox also onboard; Ryan Jones is serving as executive producer. TB further reports “a desire to move the story out of the parlor and make it a game of ‘worldwide mystery’ with action-adventure elements, potentially setting up a possible franchise that could play well internationally.” Because when you think “Clue,” the phrase that first »
- Michael Nordine
Eric Bay-Andersen on trends and the lack of originality in Hollywood…
At the beginning of this year I went to the cinema and saw a preview of all the big films coming out in 2016, and it really depressed me because almost every upcoming ‘event’ film was a sequel, a re-boot, or a prequel to the re-imagined spin-off of a TV show adaptation! It’s gotten to the point where I even get disheartened by book adaptations, which is silly I know because there are so many great published stories out there that are worthy of being adapted for the big-screen. I guess I just find it sad that most film-makers these days seem to look to the best-sellers list for their inspiration, rather than their own imagination. I mean, if a new book comes out and is a big success, then of course someone will make it into a film at some point, »
- Amie Cranswick
Warner Bros. says the female-led Ocean's 8 will start filming in October, and they've lined up an interesting cast. But could they not find three more actors? Directed by Gary Ross (The Hunger Games), the film is being produced by Ocean’s Eleven director Steven Soderbergh with a script from Ross and Olivia Milch. We actually don't know much at this point how the film itself will play out but Deadline reports on the latest casting news: Aside from the previously identified Sandra Bullock and Cate Blanchett, deals are close with Anne Hathaway, Rihanna, Helena Bonham Carter, Mindy Kaling and Awkwafina. The latter is the hip hop moniker of Asian American rapper and actress Nora Lum, who most recently had a role in Neighbors 2. And yes, you didn't miscount, that's only seven actors. They'd still need one more to make their title true unless George Clooney is going to jump back in. »
- Jill Pantozzi
Word comes by way of San Diego Comic-Con, where the show’s producers confirmed that Rihanna – who has flirted with acting via Battleship, Annie, This is the End and, soon, Luc Besson’s Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets – will play the highly-anticipated part of Marion Crane, the hapless visitor originally portrayed by Janet Leigh in Alfred Hitchcock’s seminal classic.
Have a gander at Rihanna’s official announcement, below.
.@rihanna to check into #BatesMotel as Marion Crane in the 5th and final season!https://t.co/7t2pRL43cf
— Bates Motel on A&E (@InsideBates) July 22, 2016
- Michael Briers
Rihanna becomes a mystical being in the new music video for her single “Sledgehammer.” The song, written by Sia, is featured on the “Star Trek Beyond” soundtrack and was first heard on the latest trailer for the latest installment of the sci-fi franchise.
Wearing alien-esque makeup and an orange ensemble, the singer is seen in a desert-type location on another planet. She uses her supernatural powers to move boulders and create an orb full of energy, until finally becoming one with space. The Starship Enterprise also makes a special appearance at the end.
According to Rihanna, this is the first-ever music video filmed entirely in IMAX.
Read More: Kanye West’s ‘Famous’ Video: Watch The Realist Art-Inspired, Nude Celebrity Short Film
- Liz Calvario
With Independence Day: Resurgence hitting theaters this week, we take a look at the last time aliens invaded earth in a big summer blockbuster. Battleship (2012) Director: Peter Berg Stars: Taylor Kitsch, Alexander Skarsgard, Brooklyn Decker Aliens travel millions of miles to Earth and use their advanced technology to force humanity to play a large scale Milton Bradley game. ... Read More »
- Jason Adams
It's been "years and years" since Taylor Kitsch reunited with his Friday Night Lights costars, and he can't wait to spend time with his former castmates this weekend. Thanks to Marriott Rewards, Kitsch is teaming up with Zach Gilford, Minka Kelly, and Aimee Teegarden to compete in Saturday's Spartan Race in Chicago, where the group will be tackling obstacles and, as Kitsch joked, possibly calling Kyle Chandler for a prerace pep talk, Coach Taylor style. Over the past few years, the 35-year-old actor has starred in movies like John Carter, Battleship, and Lone Survivor, and last year he was back on the small screen with True Detective. It was his breakout role as Fnl's Tim Riggins, though, that made him a household name, and to talk to Kitsch is to remember why his popular character is such a fan favorite. Like Riggins, Kitsch is charming and quick with the one-liners - which makes sense, »
- Laura Marie Meyers
"We a big company, millions of moving parts... We all work very hard to ensure those moving parts are functioning..." Lionsgate has debuted a second trailer for Peter Berg's Deepwater Horizon, the disaster movie profiling the explosion on the Deepwater Horizon oil rig in the Gulf of Mexico. The main focus is on Mark Wahlberg as one of the workers on the rig, along with his girlfriend played by Kate Hudson. The ensemble cast also includes Dylan O'Brien, Gina Rodriguez, John Malkovich, Kurt Russell, Ethan Suplee, and others. This certainly looks like a very patriotic, heroic Peter Berg movie, for better or worse. Here's the second official trailer for Peter Berg's Deepwater Horizon, direct from Lionsgate's YouTube: On April 20, 2010, the world’s largest man-made disaster occurred on the Deepwater Horizon in the Gulf of Mexico. Directed by Peter Berg (The Rundown, Friday Night Lights, The Kingdom, Hancock, Battleship and Lone Survivor previously. »
- Alex Billington
On April 20th, 2010, one of the world’s largest man-made disasters occurred on the offshore drilling rig Deepwater Horizon in the Gulf of Mexico. Directed by Peter Berg (Lone Survivor, Battleship) and starring Kurt Russell and Mark Wahlberg, Horizon looks to bring some real heart-pumping action sequences our way, which you can get a glimpse of with the new trailer! Peter Berg is... Read More »
- Sean Wist
The doc will be one of the first from Berg's new non-scripted production company, Film 45 (the logical offshoot of his film/TV company, Film 44). Berg described the as-yet-untitled movie as an "unfiltered look into Rihanna's life and how she's ascended to become a global icon."
Berg added that he was interested in exploring "a young artist at the top of her professional field »
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