For the bulk of every Rocky and Bullwinkle episode, moose and squirrel would engage in high concept escapades that satirized geopolitics, contemporary cinema, and the very fabrics of the human condition. With all of that to work with, there's no excuse for why the pair and their Soviet nemeses haven't gotten a decent movie adaptation. But the ingenious Mr. Peabody and his faithful boy Sherman are another story, intercut between Rocky and Bullwinkle segments to teach kids brief history lessons and toss in a nearly lethal dose of puns. Their stories and relationship were much simpler, which means that bringing their shtick to the big screen would entail a lot more invention — always risky when you're dealing with precious material.
For the most part, Mr. Peabody & Sherman handles the regeneration of its heroes aptly, allowing for emotionally substance in their unique father-son relationship and all the difficulties inherent therein. The story is no subtle metaphor for the difficulties surrounding gay adoption, with society decreeing that a dog, no matter how hyper-intelligent, cannot be a suitable father. The central plot has Peabody hosting a party for a disapproving child services agent and the parents of a young girl with whom 7-year-old Sherman had a schoolyard spat, all in order to prove himself a suitable dad. Of course, the WABAC comes into play when the tots take it for a spin, forcing Peabody to rush to their rescue.
Getting down to personals, we also see the left brain-heavy Peabody struggle with being father Sherman deserves. The bulk of the emotional marks are hit as we learn just how much Peabody cares for Sherman, and just how hard it has been to accept that his only family is growing up and changing.
But more successful than the new is the film's handling of the old — the material that Peabody and Sherman purists will adore. They travel back in time via the WABAC Machine to Ancient Egypt, the Renaissance, and the Trojan War, and 18th Century France, explaining the cultural backdrop and historical significance of the settings and characters they happen upon, all with that irreverent (but no longer racist) flare that the old cartoons enjoyed. And oh... the puns.
Mr. Peabody & Sherman is a f**king treasure trove of some of the most amazingly bad puns in recent cinema. This effort alone will leave you in awe.
The film does unravel in its final act, bringing the science-fiction of time travel a little too close to the forefront and dropping the ball on a good deal of its emotional groundwork. What seemed to be substantial building blocks do not pay off in the way we might, as scholars of animated family cinema, have anticipated, leaving the movie with an unfinished feeling.
But all in all, it's a bright, compassionate, reasonably educational, and occasionally funny if not altogether worthy tribute to an old favorite. And since we don't have our own WABAC machine to return to a time of regularly scheduled Peabody and Sherman cartoons, this will do okay for now.
If nothing else, it's worth your time for the puns.
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Actress Meg Ryan is set to reunite with her You've Got Mail and Sleepless In Seattle co-star Tom Hanks for her directorial debut Ithaca. The Captain Phillips star is executive producing the film, which is based on William Saroyan's 1943 novel The Human Comedy.
In addition to directing, Ryan will star in the film alongside Sam Shepard, Melanie Griffith and her son Jack Quaid.
The film chronicles the story of a teenager who sets out to become the fastest bicycle telegraph messenger in Ithaca, California during World War Two.
She says, "Ithaca is a deceptively simple story, by turns stark and lyrical. It's sometimes shockingly unsentimental and yet, by some little miracle, never cynical. I am delighted to no end to bring a tale of such vibrancy and heart to the screen."
The script will be penned by Hanks' Band of Brothers screenwriter Erik Jendresen, with production beginning in the summer (14).
Saroyan's novel was adapted for the big screen the year the book came out. The Clarence Brown film starred Mickey Rooney, Donna Reed and Marsha Hunt. Late movie mogul Louis B. Mayer once called it his favourite movie.
"I was asked to be the first one on Hunt for Red October... and I had this other commitment and I had given my word that I would make that movie and they offered me more money than I'd ever seen in my life. And the other movie I put my own money into it. It was Dances With Wolves." Kevin Costner reveals he passed on playing Jack Ryan in the first Tom Clancy film adaptation. The movie star has a supporting role in the latest Jack Ryan movie, which features Chris Pine as the action hero.
The year 2013 has been good to several actors. A number of Hollywood's best and brightest have had big roles in at least two films, some of these turns much more impressive than others. For each actor, we pit these roles against one another, and after much discussion, and break-room fisticuffs, we decided a winner. So which roles came out on top?
Katniss Everdeen (The Hunger Games) vs. Rosalyn Rosenfeld (American Hustle)
Katniss is a fierce competitor and is tasked to be the symbol of a burgening revolution, but Rosalyn is a gale force wind of pure charisma, and she could have the entire world wrapped around her little finger if she wanted. We get the feeling she could topple dictatorships and fell regimes without needing a bow and arrow. Plus, using weapons would totally mess up her clear coat and she can't have that. She just can't.
Winner: Rosalyn Rosenfeld
Barbara Sugarman (Don Jon) vs. Samantha (Her)
Barbara is a no-nonsense Jersey girl with strong opinions about how her man should conduct herself, but Johansson really flexes her acting muscles when she's limited to a voice-only role as Samantha in Her. In Spike Jonze's latest, she perfectly captures what it's like to be a person trapped in circuitry, yet yearning for real, tangible love.
Jordan Belfort (The Wolf of Wall Street) vs. Jay Gatsby (The Great Gatsby)
Both Belfort and Gatsby only saw the color green, but while Jay built his wealth in the pursuit for Daisy from accross the bay, Belfort wallowed in the depravity of extreme greed for the relentless hunt for the almighty dollar, preaching his sermon of wealth to his baptized followers. Gatsby was lavish for sure, but Belfort made being despicable look like a hell of a lot of fun before it all came crashing down around his ears.
Winner: Jordan Belfort
Special Agent Sarah Ashburn (The Heat) vs. Dr. Ryan Stone (Gravity)
Agent Ashburn was the kind of straight-laced stick in the mud that everyone loves the hate until Det. Shannon Mullins teaches her to stop being such a "Naach" and loosen up a little, but Ryan Stone's journey from depressed scientist to fierce survivor was probably the most life-affirming thing at the movies this year.
Winner: Dr. Ryan Stone
Russell Baze (Out of the Furnace) vs. Irving Rosenfeld (American Hustle)
Russell Baze is a blue collar working stiff who goes up against a terrifyingly evil version of Woody Harrelson, but there's something electric in Bale's performance as Irving Rosenfeld in American Hustle. Irving might have gotten the short shrift in terms of '70s hairdos in the movie, but he works that wispy comb-over of his like nobody's business.
Winner: Irving Rosenfeld
Ron Woodroof (Dallas Buyers Club) vs. Mark Hanna (The Wolf of Wall Street) vs. Mud (Mud)Matthew McConaughey is fun as Mark Hanna, an experienced stock broker who teaches Leo's Jordan Belfort the basic philosiphies of scheming suckers and taking barells of illicit substances in The Wolf of Wall Street. He's also hits the mark as island hobo (don't call him a bum) in the adventure story Mud. But the actor really shines as the emaciated cowboy who starts an HIV drug trafficking ring in Dallas Buyers Club.
Winner: Ron Woodroof
FBI agent Richard DiMaso (American Hustle) vs. Phil Wenneck (The Hangover Part III) vs. Avery Cross (The Place Beyond the Pines)
We've seen Cooper play the straght man opposite The Hangover's gaggle of weirdos in two movies already, so he's wasn't really breaking new ground as Phil Wenneck in the last film. In Place Beyond the Pines, Cooper is outshined by the far more charismatic Handsome Luke character, played by Ryan Gosling. But the actor is truly exciting as the manic and ambitious FBI agent Richard DiMaso, who seeks to create the bust of the century by recruiting some cornered con men.
Winner: Richard DiMaso
Chris Pine is in the role of Jack Ryan in the upcoming Shadow Recruit. Aside from the fact that I sometimes have difficulty telling the difference between Pine and either Chris or Liam Hemsworth, as someone who has enjoyed many of the books that use Ryan as the protagonist and most of the movies, I don't like that Hollywood is doing this to the character of Ryan.
The first sign that things were changing was when they made Ryan much younger than than in previous movies when they cast Ben Affleck in The Sum of All Fears. In the book chronology, the events were supposed to happen after Hunt For Red October, Patriot Games and Clear And Present Danger. They did away with the whole (BOOK SERIES SPOILERS) Ryan becoming president thing . So, they basically ret-conned Ryan then and now they've continued that trend by using him in a movie that isn't even based on a Tom Clancy book. The way that this movie played out with the action, it might as well have been a Bourne movie. Poor Alec Baldwin and Harrison Ford.
Clancy, who recently died, seemingly picked the right time to do so: before this movie came out. The thing of it is, it may be a good movie, but it could have easily involved a character whose name didn't begin and end with Jack and Ryan. Maybe the author didn't want to answer questions about why this was allowed to happen? Clancy wrote a lot about espionage and his cause of death remains undisclosed. For all we know, he could be reading this on a beach in Tahiti and laughing. Hmmmm...
I'm not faulting Pine for making this film. The man needs a pay check and Jack Ryan is a known name in the movie/literary world.. He may turn out to be a good choice, but I still don't have high hopes. In all seriousness, Clancy and the Ryan franchise deserved better.
Hit author Tom Clancy has died at the age of 66. The writer, who penned classic thrillers including Patriot Games, Rainbow Six, and The Hunt for Red October, passed away on Tuesday (01Oct13) at a hospital in his native Baltimore, Maryland.
No further details were available as WENN went to press.
Born in Baltimore in 1947, Clancy worked as an insurance agent before launching his writing career, and he went on to become one of the U.S.' most respected novel writers, known for his military and spy thrillers, many of which became Hollywood blockbusters.
Many of his books featured the fictional character of Jack Ryan, a Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) operative who was later brought to life on the big screen by actors including Harrison Ford, Ben Affleck and Alec Baldwin.
The plots of many Clancy novels were also used as the basis for hit computer games, and he also penned several non-fiction military books, including 1993's Submarine: A Guided Tour Inside a Nuclear Warship and Carrier: A Guided Tour of an Aircraft Carrier in 1999.
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All modern readers — ranging from those with a taste for the classics to the sort whose libraries are comprised entirely of the New York Times' latest recommendations — know the name Tom Clancy. The literary powerhouse behind so many titles that have taken form on the big screen, Clancy has contributed just as much to contemporary Hollywood as he has to contemporary literature. Tragically, Clancy died on Wednesday morning at age 66, with CNN reporting no known cause for the author's passing.
The Baltimore native's first work is perhaps his most famous as well: The Hunt for Red October, a 1984 novel that introduced his Jack Ryan hero and was brought to life in the form of an esteemed adventure movie six years later. But Clancy has a number of venerable pieces to his name that have also earned cinematic life: Clancy published Patriot Games in '87, Clear and Present Danger in '89, and The Sum of All Fears in '91. A fifth Jack Ryan film, Jack Ryan: Shadow One, is set to hit theaters in December.
In addition to movies, Clancy also inspired many a video game with his stories, the most famous of which being Rainbow Six, which Clancy wrote in 1998. The author showed no signs of slowing down his writing career. Since returning to the craft in 2010, Clancy penned five novels, and has another, Command Authority, due for publication in December 2013.
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After Dark Films
It seems a bit odd to take on a movie review of Courtney Solomon's Getaway, as only in the loosest terms is Getaway actually a movie. We begin without questions — other than a vague and frustrating "What the hell is going on?" — and end without answers, watching Ethan Hawke drive his car into things (and people) for the hour and a half in between. We learn very little along the way, probed to engage in the mystery of the journey. But we don't, because there's no reason to.
There's not a single reason to wonder about any of the things that happen to Hawke's former racecar driver/reformed criminal — forced to carry out a series of felonious commands by a mysterious stranger who is holding his wife hostage — because there doesn't seem to be a single ounce of thought poured into him beyond what he see. We learn, via exposition delivered by him to gun-toting computer whiz Selena Gomez, that he "did some bad things" before meeting the love of his life and deciding to put that all behind him. Then, we stop learning. We stop thinking. We start crashing into police cars and Christmas trees and power plants.
Why is Selena Gomez along for the ride? Well, the beginnings of her involvement are defensible: Hawke is carrying out his slew of vehicular crimes in a stolen car. It's her car. And she's on a rampage to get it back. But unaware of what she's getting herself into, Gomez confronts an idling Hawke with a gun, is yanked into the automobile, and forced to sit shotgun while the rest of the driver's "assignments" are carried out. But her willingness to stick by Hawke after hearing his story is ludicrous. Their immediate bickering falls closer to catty sexual tension than it does to genuine derision and fear (you know, the sort of feelings you'd have for someone who held you up or forced you into accessorizing a buffet of life-threatening crimes).
After Dark Films
The "gradual" reversal of their relationship is treated like something we should root for. But with so little meat packed into either character, the interwoven scenes of Hawke and Gomez warming up to each other and becoming a team in the quest to save the former's wife serve more than anything else as a breather from all the grotesque, impatient, deliberately unappealing scenes of city wreckage.
And as far as consolidating the mystery, the film isn't interested in that either, as evidenced by its final moments. Instead of pressing focus on the answers to whatever questions we may have, the movie's ultimate reveal is so weak, unsubstantial, and entirely disconnected to the story entirely, that it seems almost offensive to whatever semblance of a film might exist here to go out on this note. Offensive to the idea of film and story in general, as a matter of fact. But Getaway isn't concerned with these notions. Not with story, character, logic, or humanity. It just wants to show us a bunch of car crashes and explosions. So you'd think it might have at least made those look a little better.
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Singer/actress Selena Gomez is on the hunt for her first home after deciding she is ready to move out of her mother's house. The Come & Get It hitmaker recently became a big sister after her mum Mandy and step-father Brian Teefey welcomed their first child together in June (13), and although she enjoys having her family around her in Los Angeles, the 20 year old feels it's time she got her own space.
She tells U.S. radio host Ryan Seacrest, "I think it's time. I didn't ever wanna be forceful to saying, 'OK, I've made enough to get my own house and OK, let's blow it off and do whatever. I just love being with my family and I love knowing that they're there. But yeah, I think it's probably time for me to get my own house."
We knew Ryan Reynolds was one sexy fellow, but who knew his hottness would carry on post-mortem? Well, in his upcoming action-comedy R.I.P.D. alongside Jeff Bridges, Reynolds' hot bod reveals that even ghosts are quite the hunks!
In the Robert Schwentke directed film, Reynolds stars as Nick, a newly deceased cop who joins a crew of undead police officers working under the Rest in Peace Department to hunt down the man who killed him.
Before checking out Reynolds in all his ghostly glory in R.I.P.D., take a gander at the sexiest ghosts that ever haunted the screen. We rounded up a slew of the most handsome actors and actresses that spooked us from the other side, from Eva Longoria to Patrick Swayze. So, launch our gallery to take a peek at these good looking ghoulish guys and gals!
GALLERY: The 14 Sexiest Ghosts Ever
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