Paramount Pictures via Everett Collection
Summer blockbuster season is officially upon us, and you can't have a summer blockbuster without a proper action hero. After all, someone needs to stare into the distance with grim determination, crack jokes in the middle of a tense fight, run in slow motion away from an explosion, and make audiences everywhere swoon over the silhouette of their perfect profile in the sunset. 2014 has its own crop of actors competing for our affections and wallets, all of them hoping to be the next big movie star. But which one is truly the most heroic? Who stands triumphant over his fallen comrades as the best action hero of the year?
The Ones We've Seen:
Mark Wahlberg, Transformers: Age of Extinction Who He’s Playing: Cade Yaeger, a struggling inventor who stumbles across and injure Optimus Prime and restores him to health. Strengths: No matter what he’s in, Wahlberg gives off an intimidating vibe – he seems like the kind of guy who would punch a giant robot in the face without thinking twice about it – but he’s also able to give whichever tough guy he’s playing this time some charm. Wahlberg isn’t afraid of anything, especially not the rules of logic that state a born and bred Texan shouldn’t speak like he grew up in Boston. Weaknesses: It’s a Transformers film, so ultimately, character is less important than robots punching each other. Wahlberg doesn’t get a lot to work with here, but he doesn’t seem to put in enough work to make Cade anything other than a generic tough guy. He could be giving this same performance in basically any action movie.
Tom Cruise, Edge of Tomorrow Who He’s Playing: Major William Cage, a solider in the United Defense Forces who goes back in time to one day in particular every time he dies. Strengths: Everyone knows that Cruise can perform impressive stunts or drive alien spaceships with ease, but Edge of Tomorrow brought back a side of the actor that we haven’t seen in a while, something that was dearly missed in many of his recent blockbusters. We are, of course, talking about his ability to play a complete jackass better than almost anyone in Hollywood. As Cage, Cruise was sarcastic, rude, obnoxious and more charming than he’s been in years, and it felt like a proper return to his former action hero glory. Weaknesses: Once he stops being so obnoxious, we like him less, and the movie suffers for it. Plus, all of the charm in the world isn’t able to distract us from how awkward Cruise looks in the battle skeleton, which seems uncomfortable and unwieldy.
James McAvoy and Michael Fassbender, X-Men: Days of Future Past Who They’re Playing: Professor X and Magneto, of course. Strengths: One of the things that make the X-Men movies so great is the chemistry between Professor X and Magneto, and McAvoy and Fassbender have it in spades. Every time these two are onscreen together it’s exciting, which makes them one of the best action hero teams around. They also bring a sense of gravitas and depth to their characters, rather than just letting the stunts and effects carry the film, which makes their characters and relationship even more compelling, and the X-Men films as a whole more enjoyable. McAvoy’s drunk, depressed Charles is a tour de force performance that you’re unlikely to see in most summer blockbusters. Weaknesses: As interesting as they are together, their performances can easily get lost in the complicated plot and cast of thousands. Sure, McAvoy and Fassbender are brilliant together, but when you left the theater, the only person you were still talking about was Quicksilver.
Chris Evans, Captain America: The Winter Soldier Who He’s Playing: Captain America, duh. Strengths: A lot of the time, people seem to think that Cap is a dull, by-the-book, overly-serious character who’s focused on nothing but rules and easily confused by technology. But Evans gives him dimension, charm and the kind of biting wit that is normally associated with Tony Stark. He easily carries the film with his performance, which is by turns sympathetic, intense, and incredibly hilarious, and he managed to make the most impressive, complicated stunts look simple and graceful. Plus, he has the best profile of anyone on this list, and everyone knows an action hero is nothing without a strong jawline. Weaknesses: As charismatic as Evans is, Cap often gets overlooked in favor of the more dramatic or hilarious characters, like the Winter Soldier or Falcon, since they’re a bit flashier.
Aaron Taylor-Johnson, Godzilla Who He’s Playing: Ford Brody, a US soldier specializing in EODs. Strengths: Like Wahlberg, Taylor-Johnson looks like an action hero. He’s got the steely gaze, the clenched jaw and the trademark action hero biceps, all of which help him come across as a tough, capable soldier. He’s best in the quieter moments when Ford is reuniting with his family or connecting with his father or comforting a lost child on the train, which gives him a bit more depth and charm than the average hero. Weaknesses: Unfortunately, that’s the only thing that Ford Brody has going for him. He’s rather generic, staring out at monsters with a blank face and getting little to do other than running from disaster to disaster. If only Godzilla had realized that Ken Watanabe was the real protagonist of the film; maybe then Ford wouldn’t seem so bland.
The Ones We Haven’t:
Chris Pratt, Guardians of the Galaxy Who He’s Playing: Peter Quill a.k.a. Star Lord, a pilot and thief who teams up with a band of misfits in order to protect the galaxy. Strengths: As anyone who has ever seen a single episode of Parks and Recreation can attest, Pratt basically radiates charm. He’s funny, he’s warm, he’s likable and if the trailer is any indication, he can kick some serious butt as well. A goofy action comedy is the perfect vehicle for Pratt, and the combination of his comedic chops and his natural gift with stunts (he does every single one of Andy Dwyer’s pratfalls himself) should be enough to turn him into a proper movie star. Weaknesses: Pratt might be just a touch too goofy to be taken seriously as an action hero. Sure, he’s tall and buff, but he seems more likely to hug your than punch you, which might make it difficult for audiences to see him as a tough, intimidating superhero.
Andy Serkis, Dawn of the Planet of the Apes Who He’s Playing: Caesar, the Simian ruler of the new nation of Apes that has taken over the planet. Strengths: We might have to wait until July 11 to see Serkis in action, but we did manage to get a good impression of the character in Rise of the Planet of the Apes. Serkis is wonderful at communicating Caesar’s thoughts and ideas even without words, which gives him the advantage of not having to deal with the typical cheesy action movie dialogue, and his performance is intense and intimidating. Weaknesses: It might be a challenge for universal audiences to connect with an ape the same way that they would a human, but Serkis proved in Rise that he can instill Caesar with plenty of empathy. Now able to speak, we imagine he'll top even himself.
Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson, Hercules Who He’s Playing: Hercules. Who else would The Rock play? Strengths: Despite his intimidating size, Johnson is an incredibly goofy, charismatic guy, and he’s generally very good a bringing that to the characters he plays. An ideal Hercules would blend the action and heroics with enough charm to make us care about him and root for him, and if there’s one thing that Johnson is good at, it’s winning over an audience. Weaknesses: Hercules has to follow the dismal Legend of Hercules and Pompeii, so Johnson is under a lot of pressure to create a charming, likable, interesting character in order to avoid being lumped in with the rest of them. That’s a big challenge for his first proper action hero role, and the trailer seems to give off a dismal, serious vibe, so he’ll have a lot working against him.
Scarlett Johansson, Lucy Who She’s Playing: Lucy, a woman with the ability to access and control her brain’s full potential, which gives her the ability to control the world around her. Strengths: With experience as both a leading lady and a superhero, Johansson should have no trouble blending both to create an exciting, original character. As Lucy, she gives off a strong, independent vibe that’s at once intimidating and compelling. And we already know that Johansson’s able to inject a healthy dose of charm into whoever she’s playing, so it seems like Lucy might just beat the boys at their own game. Weaknesses: She’s got a complex, convoluted plot to contend with, which means she’ll need to spend a lot of time rattling off exposition. That takes away from the time the audience spends getting to know the character, and if Johansson doesn’t make it interesting enough, it could keep them from connecting with Lucy.
Alan Ritchson, Noel Fisher, Jeremy Howard, and Pete Plozek, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Who They’re Playing: Ritchson is Raphael, Fisher is Michelangelo, Howard is Donatello and Plozek will be playing Leonardo, although his voice will be dubbed over by Johnny Knoxville. Strengths: They’re all practically unknown, which means that audiences don’t quite know what to expect from them – a fact which the Turtles themselves would no doubt use to their advantage. The most recognizable of the bunch is Fisher, whose role as Mickey Milkovich on Shameless has proven that he’s a talented actor who brings a lot of depth and layers to his characters. He turned one of the show’s bullies into one of its heroes, which bodes well for his ability to connect with an audience. Weaknesses: The Turtles themselves are CGI, and since the trailer promises weird, slightly freaky-looking creatures, it’s going to be a challenge for them to give a compelling performance through all of the effects. Since they themselves will be unrecognizable, it’s going to be harder for them to win over the audience and get them to root for these characters.
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.
Follow @Michael Arbeiter
| Follow @Hollywood_com
Give Martin Freeman an empty room and he'll give you comedy. The best parts of The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey — an admittedly mishandled movie in large — involved his subdued grimaces, his Chaplinian waddling, and the way he carried himself with equal parts neurosis and snark in every scene. If there is one primary misstep of An Unexpected Journey's terrifically improved sequel, The Desolation of Smaug, it is the spiritual absence of Bilbo Baggins.
Freeman's good-natured but disgruntled Hobbit takes a backseat to the Dwarf team in this chapter of Peter Jackon's three-part saga, distributing the heavy lifting among the front lines of the bearded mooks. Thankfully, we're not shafted with too much "Thorin's destiny" backstory, instead focusing on the trek forward, through far more interesting terrain than we got last time around. The Dwarves voyage through a trippy woodland that'll conjur fond memories of The Legend of Zelda's unnavigable forest levels and inside the borders of Lake-town, a man-occupied working class monarchy that is more vivid and living than any place we have seen yet in the series. And while Unexpected Journey's goblin caverns might have been cool to look at, none of the quests in Desolation feel nearly as close to a tangential detour. Every step the Dwarves take is one that beckons us closer to the central, increasingly engaging story.
Desolation is not entirely without its curiosities. While Gandalf's mission to meet the Necromancer serves to connect the Hobbit trilogy to the Lord of the Rings movies, the occasional cuts over to the wizard's pursuits are primarily distracting and just a bit dull. Although we're happy to welcome the Elf race back into our Middle-earth adventures, it's easy to imagine a version of this story that didn't involve side characters like Legolas and Kate... I mean, Tauriel... and still felt whole (perhaps even more cohesive). The latter's love affair with hot Dwarf Kili seems like a last minute addition to the canon, and one not built on anything beyond the cinematic rule that two sexually compatible attractive people should probably have something brewing alongside all the action.
But the most egregious of crimes committed by Desolation is, unquestionably, the shafting of Bilbo Baggins to secondary status. Yes, he proves himself a savior to his fellow travelers four times in the film, but long stretches of action go by without so much as a word from the wide-eyed burglar. When he finally takes center stage in his theatrical face-off with Smaug — an exercise in double-talk reminiscent of Oedipus outsmarting the Sphinx — the film picks up with a new, cool energy, with a chilling fun laced around the impending doom of their back-and-forth. We've been waiting since the first frames of Unexpected to see how the dragon material will pay off, and it does in spades... albeit in the final third of Desolation, but with equal parts gravitas and fun, to reunite us with our Tolkien passions once more.
Benedict Cumberbatch's dragon doesn't do much to subvert expectation — he's slithering, sadistic, vain, manipulative, and vaguely Londonian. But tradition feels good here. Smaug's half hour spent toying with the mousey Bilbo (who does get a chance to showcase his aptitude at small-scale physical comedy here) is terrific in every way.
Its Hobbit problem aside, Desolation proves itself worthy of Bilbo's past proclamation. "I'm going on an adventure!" more than pays off here, in the form of mystifying boat rides, edge-of-your-seat efforts in dragon slaying, and the most joyful action set piece we've seen in years. Twelve Dwarves, twelve barrels, and one roaring river amounts for enough fun to warrant your trip to the theater for this latest outing into Middle-earth.
Follow @Michael Arbeiter
| Follow @Hollywood_com
Lions Gate via Everett Collection
When we last left our heroes, they had conquered all opponents in the 74th Annual Hunger Games, returned home to their newly refurbished living quarters in District 12, and fallen haplessly to the cannibalism of PTSD. And now we're back! Hitching our wagons once again to laconic Katniss Everdeen and her sweet-natured, just-for-the-camera boyfriend Peeta Mellark as they gear up for a second go at the Capitol's killing fields.
But hold your horses — there's a good hour and a half before we step back into the arena. However, the time spent with Katniss and Peeta before the announcement that they'll be competing again for the ceremonial Quarter Quell does not drag. In fact, it's got some of the film franchise's most interesting commentary about celebrity, reality television, and the media so far, well outweighing the merit of The Hunger Games' satire on the subject matter by having Katniss struggle with her responsibilities as Panem's idol. Does she abide by the command of status quo, delighting in the public's applause for her and keeping them complacently saturated with her smiles and curtsies? Or does Katniss hold three fingers high in opposition to the machine into which she has been thrown? It's a quarrel that the real Jennifer Lawrence would handle with a castigation of the media and a joke about sandwiches, or something... but her stakes are, admittedly, much lower. Harvey Weinstein isn't threatening to kill her secret boyfriend.
Through this chapter, Katniss also grapples with a more personal warfare: her devotion to Gale (despite her inability to commit to the idea of love) and her family, her complicated, moralistic affection for Peeta, her remorse over losing Rue, and her agonizing desire to flee the eye of the public and the Capitol. Oftentimes, Katniss' depression and guilty conscience transcends the bounds of sappy. Her soap opera scenes with a soot-covered Gale really push the limits, saved if only by the undeniable grace and charisma of star Lawrence at every step along the way of this film. So it's sappy, but never too sappy.
In fact, Catching Fire is a masterpiece of pushing limits as far as they'll extend before the point of diminishing returns. Director Francis Lawrence maintains an ambiance that lends to emotional investment but never imposes too much realism as to drip into territories of grit. All of Catching Fire lives in a dreamlike state, a stark contrast to Hunger Games' guttural, grimacing quality that robbed it of the life force Suzanne Collins pumped into her first novel.
Once we get to the thunderdome, our engines are effectively revved for the "fun part." Katniss, Peeta, and their array of allies and enemies traverse a nightmare course that seems perfectly suited for a videogame spin-off. At this point, we've spent just enough time with the secondary characters to grow a bit fond of them — deliberately obnoxious Finnick, jarringly provocative Johanna, offbeat geeks Beedee and Wiress — but not quite enough to dissolve the mystery surrounding any of them or their true intentions (which become more and more enigmatic as the film progresses). We only need adhere to Katniss and Peeta once tossed in the pit of doom that is the 75th Hunger Games arena, but finding real characters in the other tributes makes for a far more fun round of extreme manhunt.
But Catching Fire doesn't vie for anything particularly grand. It entertains and engages, having fun with and anchoring weight to its characters and circumstances, but stays within the expected confines of what a Hunger Games movie can be. It's a good one, but without shooting for succinctly interesting or surprising work with Katniss and her relationships or taking a stab at anything but the obvious in terms of sending up the militant tyrannical autocracy, it never even closes in on the possibility of being a great one.
Follow @Michael Arbeiter
| Follow @Hollywood_com
In watching The Hangover movies, as you're laughing at the memorable one-liners and assorted twists of debauchery, you're likely to come to a very disturbing realization. These three men, the proverbial Wolf Pack, for whom you are meant to root and cheer through their tireless follies, are actually horrible, horrible people. You've got Bradley Cooper as a mean-spirited, duplicitous schoolteacher who steals money from his students. You've got Ed Helms as a pompous married man who had every intention of keeping his romantic past, and drunken indiscretions, from his new wife. And worst of all, Zach Galifianakis' self-absorbed, nearly sociopathic adult child Alan. They're hardly the three Musketeers. But for some reason, we're expected to stand firmly in their corner.
The Hangover series is not an outlier in this effect — plenty of movies headline their stories with less-than-upstanding citizens, hoping that audiences will look past their dwindling morality and just focus on the funny. To change your mind about a few favorite characters, check out our gallery of the most horrible movie heroes, and catch The Hangover Part III in theaters now.
The 10 Worst Heroes in Movie History
Follow Michael Arbeiter on Twitter @MichaelArbeiter
More:Ken Jeong's 'Hangover' Spinoff?'Hangover 3' May Abandon the Formula'Hangover 3' Calamity Continues in New Clips, Posters
From Our PartnersStars Pose Naked for 'Allure' (Celebuzz)Which Game of Thrones Actor Looks Least Like His Character? (Vulture)
The Hangover had a pretty ingenious conceit: take the nightmarish scenario of blacking out and waking up with no memories and fit it into the beats of a film noir. Recalling the events of the prior night became a mystery with hints of Raymond Chandler, with the added hurdle of nasty, roofie-induced headaches.
The sequel replicated the format of the first movie, but writer/director Todd Phillips seems to be going a bit more straightforward for his third adventure with the Wolf Pack. Judging from the latest trailer, Phil (Bradley Cooper), Alan (Zach Galifianakis), and Stu (Ed Helms) don't suffer any foggy memories. Instead, they're strong-armed into using their detective skills to solve an actual mystery.
This time, the trio is enlisted by a vicious mobster (John Goodman) to track down the franchise sidekick Mr. Chow (Ken Jeong). Which means The Hangover: Part III has a lot more Ken Jeong than either of its predecessors. Depending on comedic tastes and tolerance of high screechy voices, that could make or break the movie.
While the trailer has a severe lack of Jessica Fletcher, it does seem to go back to the basics of what made the first movie work, with the insanity of Vegas once again playing home to the bumbling trio's antics. Has The Hangover worn out its welcome, or is stripping down the concept refreshing?
The Hangover Part III arrives May 24. Check out a new poster for the movie, which showcases the three stars with new and improved eyewear, below:
Follow Matt Patches on Twitter @misterpatches
[Photo Credit: Warner Bros. Pictures]
More: 'The Hangover Part III' Calamity Continues in Two New Clips, PostersThe Wolf Pack Return to Vegas for 'Hangover 3''Hangover 3' Gets a 'Harry Potter' Makeover
From Our Partners:Eva Longoria Bikinis on Spring Break (Celebuzz)33 Child Stars: Where Are They Now? (Celebuzz)
Hey, guys: look! Did your afternoon feel lacking and without a nice little sight gag involving a giraffe hurtling towards death on the freeway? Look no further, my friends, because, oh man, the chuckle brigade has reunited one last time to bring us the third iteration of The Hangover films, and the studio behind the comedy clusterf**k has released a few new clips for the hee-haw raucous romp of rehashed proportions.
RELATED: 'Hangover 3' Gets a 'Harry Potter' Makeover
The Hangover Part III shows the Wolf Pack reunited at long, long, long last (you've all been waiting with breath that is bated for so eons — how have you managed to survive?!) to tackle one last shenanigansy-filled trip to Vegas: where things all began for Stu (Ed Helms), Phil (Bradley Cooper), Alan (Zach Galifinakis), and Doug (Justin Bartha). And — dear lord — hopefully where they will end.
RELATED: The Wolf Pack Return to Vegas for 'Hangover 3'
Do we really need to rehash what is likely to be the plot of this film? A seemingly inocuous trip turns into a vacation from h-e-double-hockey-sticks, and John Goodman is there. As is Ken Jeong. Oh, and look! Melissa McCarthy! If The Hangover II taught us anything, this will be another lesson in groan-worthy mediocrity. Because what isn't funny about making the same movie over and over again, amirite? Hollywood at its best!
Check out the new international trailer and TV spot, below:
Follow @alicialutes on Twitter
[Photo Credit: Warner Brothers]
From Our Partners:40 Most Revealing See-Through Red Carpet Looks (Vh1)33 Child Stars: Where Are They Now? (Celebuzz)
The wolf pack is... oh jeez, you get the idea already.
While the first trailer for The Hangover: Part III doesn't give away too much about the plot of the final chapter in Todd Phillips' drunken debauchery saga, how much could there actually be to give away, really? It's a safe bet the third installment will follow a similar formula as they first two Hangover movies: the guys will get drunk, do something terrible, forget about what happened, piece it back together, get away scot free, hilarity will ensure, and it will make buckets upon buckets of money.
RELATED: Bradley Cooper Beats the S**t Out of Zach Galifianakis on 'Between Two Ferns'
Still, there are some other things we picked up on from the trailer (which comes a day after those inspired Harry Potter-like posters were released), other than the fact that Phil, Alan, Stu (played by Bradley Cooper, Zach Galifianakis, and Ed Helms, respectively), Jade (Heather Graham) and unfortunately, the grating one-note Mr. Chow (Ken Jeong) are all back for more shenanigans at the original scene of the crime(s), Las Vegas. Just as Justin Bartha recently revealed to Hollywood.com, "You’ll get a lot of the characters that have been in the first two movies back in the third one.”
RELATED:'The Hangover Part III' Poster Gets a 'Harry Potter' Makeover
It appears as though Doug's father-in-law Sid (Jeffrey Tambor) bites the big one, the fellas have gotten into trouble with mask-wearing gangsters (who John Goodman seems to be in charge of), a lollipop enthusiast (Melissa McCarthy) swaps spit with Alan, there's a prison outbreak, and Alan has an unexpectedly beautiful singing voice. Oh, and he buys a giraffe. Those wacky grown men!
RELATED:Zach Galifianakis Says 'The Hangover 3' Will Be Different
When will they ever learn?! Ah, right, never... but technically on May 24, when The Hangover: Part III hits theaters. Watch the preview here:
Additional reporting by Leanne Aguilera
[Photo credit: Warner Bros. Pictures]
From Our Partners:40 Most Revealing See-Through Red Carpet Looks (Vh1)15 Stars Share Secrets of their Sex Lives (Celebuzz)
‘It All Ends.’ That was the tagline for 2011’s Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows—Part 2, but Potter studio Warner Bros. is already cannibalizing it as the slogan for the epic conclusion to another blockbuster film series. A film series that’s also about friendship, even in the midst of unthinkable chaos, dreaded foes, and shattered cityscapes: The Hangover.
RELATED: ‘The Hangover Part III’: Will. Someone. Die?
The Hangover Part III's new poster reimagines the epic final showdown poster of Harry Potter and Voldemort as a square off between Zach Galifianakis’ Alan and Ken Jeong’s Mr. Chow. In place of a burning Hogwarts is Las Vegas in flames. And if you think about it, both franchises really do have a lot of similarities. The friendship between animagus Sirius Black and werewolf Remus Lupin could be designated a “Wolf Pack,” if you are so inclined. Certainly the characters played by Bradley Cooper, Ed Helms, and Galifianakis need desperately, like Harry Potter, to master the art of occlumency so as to prevent blackouts. And the characters in both series really like to imbibe questionable beverages, though something tells us butterbeer and pumpkin juice wouldn’t be strong enough for the Hangover gang. Now if we can just get a cast member from The Hangover Part III to say pompously that the trilogy-capper is a “war film,” the two franchises will truly have merged.
Check out the poster.
Does it bring back sweet nostalgia for the heady days of 2011?
Follow Christian Blauvelt on Twitter @Ctblauvelt
[Photo Credit: Warner Bros. Pictures]
From Our Partners:40 Most Revealing See-Through Red Carpet Looks (Vh1)15 Stars Share Secrets of their Sex Lives (Celebuzz)
Nothing was hotter in 2012 than '90s nostalgia. From the Clueless cast getting back together to the revival of Boy Meets World, this was the year of reminiscing. But while the trend is veering dangerously into overkill, there is nothing — and I mean absolutely nothing — bad or wrong about Vanity Fair's photo shoot of the entire cast of the beloved, short-run cult darling Freaks and Geeks.
It's not just the obvious players like James Franco (Daniel), Jason Segel (Nick), Seth Rogen (Ken), Linda Cardellini (Lindsay, a.k.a. Lady L), Busy Philipps (Kim), and Martin Starr (Bill), but everybody was there. Millie! Mr. Weir! Cindy Sanders! Guidance counselor Mr. Rosso! The original McKinley High gang (that's right, Glee, deal with it) is all here. Okay, you can argue that it's not technically everybody (Bill's Seven Minutes in Heaven partner Vicki, played by Joanna Garcia Swisher and relentless bully Alan, played by Chauncey Leopardi, are among some of the MIA) but it's still a joyous blast from the past to see the cast and creative team — including Judd Apatow and Paul Feig — from this brilliant comedy/drama back together.
Sure, they're a little bit older (except for John Francis Daley and Samm Levine, who appear not to have aged a single day since Freaks and Geeks unjustly went off the air after one perfect season back in 2000) but the chemistry is still completely there. As a fan of the series, it's hard not to get a little bit choked up looking at the sweet VF photos, but then again, Freaks and Geeks is like seeing an old reliable friend who conjures up some seriously wonderful memories. You can see the entire slideshow here, but check out the amazing class photo below and see if you can spot all the familiar faces:
The Freaks and Geeks reunion spread appears in Vanity Fair's Comedy Issue, on newsstands now.
[Photo credit: Mark Seliger/Vanity Fair]
Apt. 23 Recap: Dawson Leery's Funeral
Lost Reunions: Hurley & Shannon on Californication
Cory and Topanga Are In! Girl Meets World Pilot Nabs Danielle Fishel, Ben Savage
From Our Partners:
25 Things You Didn’t Know About ‘Aladdin’ (Moviefone)
Best Hit Men Movies Ever (Moviefone)