Last time on 21 Jump Street:

Captain Dickson: Enough, already. Enough. New assignment. Since you two cowboys love to drink booze, smoke weed with kids and f**k anything with a big ass in jeans with low self-esteem, I’m a send you to a place where all that s**t is allowed.
Jenko: Oh, I love Disneyland.
Captain Dickson: You two sons of bitches are goin’ to college!
Schmidt: Yes!
Jenko: No!

I wanted to believe that ending to 21 Jump Street would be good open ending to one of the biggest surprises of 2012.  Two years later, Schmidt and Jenko are back in 22 Jump Street. Equally surprising is the sequel being as good as the original. The Phil Lord and Christopher Miller film has the same quick wit, bromantic tendencies and over the top ridiculousness as the first. Even Deputy Chief Hardy (Nick Offerman) is pretty clear when he says with a deadpan delivery: “You’re doing the same thing. The thing you did the first time; you’re doing it again, because it was successful”. There are a few moments like that where the cast doesn’t tear down the 4th wall, but they do give it a swift knock. Poignantly self-aware, even mocking its very existence; 22 Jump Street is smart, crude, crass, raunchy and as surprisingly good as the first.

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In a expo that continues to grow year by year, it appears that (via a press release) the event known as the Long Beach Comics Expo will be upping the ante for its upcoming show.  Find out the extent of the expo’s expansion in the press release below: (more…)

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Major Bill Cage: Marketing Guru of the Military went from this…

‘Tom Cruise Saves The World’ seems like a common theme in his movies since 2003′s The Last Samurai. Cruise always finds himself in an impossible situation where he is the only, and I mean ONLY person alive that can defeat the enemy. It happened in War of the Worlds, Oblivion, Jack Reacher, Valkyrie, The Last Samurai and all four Mission: Impossible movies. With the exception of Oblivion, the films mentioned before are pretty entertaining, despite  Cruise’s infallibility. Edge of Tomorrow isn’t any different. Tom Cruise saves the world, because he’s Tom flippin’ Cruise. Luckily for Cruise, the marriage of ‘Groundhog Day’ and ‘Starship Troopers’ proves to be instering and engaging throughout. It’s the first time in a while where Tom Cruise saves the world; and I’d actually like to see him try.

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(left to right) Brienne of Tarth (Gwendoline Christie) & Podrick Payne (Daniel Portman) look on in Season 4 of HBO’s GAME OF THRONES

With two episodes remaining in the fourth season of Game Of Thrones, the show has now become the most popular series in HBO’s history. Episodes of the show, which debut Sunday nights (9:00-10:00 p.m. ET/PT), have an average gross audience of 18.4 million viewers, surpassing the previous record set by the 2002 season of The Sopranos, which had an average gross audience of 18.2 million viewers per episode. Season three of Game Of Thrones had an average gross audience of 14.4 million viewers per episode. (more…)

walker stalker convention

If you follow some of the events (SDCC, Awesome Con, C2E2, etc.) that I attend, you’ll know that I am frequent visitor of Cons (especially those that I have yet to experience). So with that said, this recent press release from the Walker Stalker Convention (released today) has definitely sparked my interest.  Created by The Walker Stalkers Podcasters James & Eric, the idea for the convention came from the podcasters’ desire to recreate their unforgettable experience traveling to Senoia, GA to view the set of The Walking Dead and meeting the incredible actors from the show.  However, in addition to featuring cast members of the show, the convention also includes (of course) other talented actors and artists from other zombie shows, movies and art.  As stated before, the event will indeed boast many of the stars from AMC’s The Walking Dead; however, the press release (below) promises many more guests will be stopping by as well! Check it out… (more…)

 

LONE SURVIVOR actor/writer Marcus Luttrell and            director Peter Berg on the “Heroes Then & Now” Red        Carpet at the 2014 GI Film Festival. Photo Credit: Vithaya Phongsavan

As you well know, last week I was fortunate to be on hand again at this year’s GI Film Festival. With such a variety of film selections available to its attendees, there was a lot to choose from in the way of films depicting the subject of war and the military. Therefore to cap off my coverage of the festival, I attended the “Heroes Then and Now” event last Saturday (Day 6 of the festival, if you’re still keeping track). As luck would have it, that night not only included the festival’s Best Of Festival Awards, it also included a dedication to the film, LONE SURVIVOR. (more…)

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World Premieres aside, the GI Film Festival saw each of its festival days focus on specific themes related to military life and/or ideals.  Friday (or Day 5), for example, was devoted to honoring Hollywood Patriots as well as the late actor, James Gandolfini.  To further highlight these themes, festival selections, THE FIRST MOTION PICTURE UNIT: WHEN HOLLYWOOD WENT TO WAR and TRAVIS: A SOLDIER’S STORY, took center stage as the films featured for that night.  In addition, actor Gary Sinise was also on hand as a keynote speaker and presenter for the event. (more…)

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Earlier this week, the 8th Annual GI Film Festival saw the war feature, FIELD OF LOST SHOES, make its world premiere at the Old Town Theater in Alexandria.  Directed by Sean McNamara, the film tells the true story of a group of young cadets in the Confederacy who are ordered into battle to protect Shenandoah Valley (the breadbasket of the South) from the Northern forces during the Civil War.  While at the premiere, I caught with up with one of the film’s stars, actor David Arquette, to discuss the film.  (more…)

Sandler and his Happy Madison Productions have had their share of successes. It’s the third movie together with Adam Sandler and Drew Barrymore; the duo last worked together in the likable ’50 First Dates’. In ‘Blended’, directed by long time Sandler collaborator, Frank Coraci; we get an uneven mess of warmth and chemistry between Sandler and Barrymore, peppered with crass humour and fornicating wildlife. 

BLENDED

 

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X-Men: Days of Future Past is ambitious, maybe even too ambitious. The direct sequel to X-Men: First Class, Days of Future Past also ties into the original X-Men trilogy from the early 2000′s. For some of you comes the harsh realization that X Men: The Last Stand (2006) actually happened. Deal with it. On paper the dual story line, time traveling double sequel for two series six years apart, will confound the unfamiliar. For the X fanboy and fangirl, Days of Future Past is the movie fans have been longing to see.

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As was the case last May, tomorrow the DC Metropolitan area will play host to the 8th Annual GI Film Festival!  Created in 2007, this festival (as stated by the Founders) was made with one simple purpose in mind: to let artists tell the story of our troops, their successes and their sacrifices.  Though the festival has yet to reach its ten-year mark, it has accomplished a great deal since its creation, bringing the subject matter of war and the brave troops who fight them to the forefront.  (more…)

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Christopher Nolan has directed and produced a multitude of blockbusters in the past decade, from INCEPTION to his DARK KNIGHT trilogy, and even more recently with his involvement in the MAN OF STEEL film.  Now, after being seemingly “quiet” in the sense of helming blockbusters the past few years, the director/producer appears to be back with his latest likely blockbuster, INTERSTELLAR.  Starring the likes of Matthew McConaughey and Anne Hathaway, the film touches on the subject of space travel; however, as is the case with other Nolan films, from the looks of the new trailer (below), it appears that there will be more to the story than initially suspected.      (more…)

Movie Review – Chef

May 17, 2014

Jon Favreau may be most memorable for his involvement in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Favreau triumphantly returns to his indie roots in Chef. It’s been a while since Favreau has given us a smaller, story driven narrative. Before this it was a couple of Iron Man movies then, unfortunately Cowboys & Aliens. For now i’m glad to see him in this role before, Avengers: The Age of Ultron releases next year.

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A slick, witty comedy about Chef Carl Casper, who quit his job as executive chef in a high end Los Angeles restaurant. Touted as the next big thing, Carl’s innovative menu gets condensed into a boring array of comfort foods, that are as uninspiring as they are popular. When a top L.A. food critic is in for a review, Riva, the restaurant’s owner wants to stick with the same menu, while Carl is looking to do something new.Torn between his job and his passion for food, Carl quits and the ensuing review wasn’t kind.

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It has been 60 year since the release of Gojira, the original Japanese version of Godzilla. For better or worse; Godzilla is back. Please excuse my trepidation, as I have much cause for concern. The last American Godzilla (1998) was a terrible mess that could have been a fatal blow for the franchise on this side of the Pacific Rim (Ha!). Neither Mothra nor King Kong could kill Godzilla; but Ferris freaking Bueller nearly slayed the giant.

November 3rd, 1954 Gojira is released in Japan. Less than 10 years removed from the events of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, Godzilla is born a radioactive giant dinosaur like creature that terrorizes Tokyo. A strong metaphor for destructive nature of nuclear weaponry; Godzilla was nature’s response to the incalculable damage caused by man. The series took a turn toward ridiculousness over the next 30 years, until the 1984 film The Return of Godzilla.

Though the plot was virtually impossible, it wasn’t completely implausible. Given its period in history and in culture, Godzilla remains a relevant metaphor as the counterbalance of nature against a climate change. Indeed, there has been a climate change since 1954; director Gareth Edwards has the daunting task of reviving a franchise that has been dormant for 16 years in the US.

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BvS Dark Knight Tease

Back in August, Warner Bros. generated major buzz when they revealed that actor/director Ben Affleck would take on the role of Bruce Wayne aka Batman in their tentatively titled MAN OF STEEL sequel, BATMAN VS. SUPERMAN.  In the time since that announcement, there has been much speculation and discussion on not only if the Mr. Affleck would be a good fit as the superhero, but also how the actor would look as The Dark Knight.  Now, the latter is longer a concern as a photo has surfaced of the superhero via social media.   (more…)

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The common trend (as of late) of seeing established franchises receive prequels and/or reboots have been met with mixed reactions, and with good reason.  While some of these prequels and/or reboots films have provided a fresh new take on recognized franchises, others have completely fallen short and have come across as a simple “cash grab.”   As a result, the trend has created two factions of movie-goers: a) Purists-who don’t want their beloved, revered franchises tampered with & b) Folks who are open-minded to the idea of seeing an established franchise re-visited or re-imagined.  While on most occasions, I ‘d say that I fall in the former category, one movie (released in 2011) provided an example of why the later stance needs to occasionally be embraced.  This surprisingly awesome 2011 film that I speak of was RISE OF THE PLANET OF APES (more…)

AGE OF ULTRON Coming To SDCC 2014

Well Reel Filmers, it appears that you will need to get your camping supplies ready as news breaks that one of the most anticipated sequels of 2015 will indeed make an appearance at “The Con” come July.  The sequel that I speak of is none other than AVENGERS: AGE OF ULTRON (more…)

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STARZ has announced today that its original series, Da Vinci’s Demons, will return for a third season.  Developed from the mind that brought us MAN OF STEEL, the series follows the exploits of a young Leonardo Da Vinci during the Renaissance era.  Check out the official press release below: (more…)

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Back in 2005 (yes, almost 10 years ago), movie audiences were treated to the film adaptation of Frank Miller’s noir style comic book, SIN CITY.  Now, the same team (director Robert Rodriguez and writer Frank Miller) who brought that film to life are back with its sequel, A DAME TO KILL FOR.  Continuing the story threads introduced from the first film, the sequel sees the return of many of the original film’s stars, such as Jessica Alba as Nancy Callahan, Mickey Rourke as Marv, Rosario Dawson as Gail, Jaime King as Goldie, and Bruce Willis as John Hartigan.  (more…)

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If anyone was The Fifth Beatle, it was Brian.

-Paul McCartney

 

As iconic as The Beatles are now,  it is hard to believe that there once a time when even they struggled to secure a record deal.  However, with the help of a gentlemen named Brian Epstein,  who discovered them in a cellar in Liverpool, The Beatles (as we well know) exploded into international stardom.  So who was this Brian Epstein?  (more…)

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As stated before, there was much to see this past weekend at C2E2; however, with so much to see, there were only a few stops that I made sure that I made.  One of these priorities included taking the time to chat with actor, Kristian Nairn.  Hailing from Northern Ireland, the actor (other times musician & DJ) is an ensemble member of the one of my favorite shows on television, known only as Game of Thrones (more…)

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In terms of “Cons,” my only exposure to such events has been the “little one” in San Diego (perhaps you’ve heard of it?) and the relatively new one that recently commenced last week here in DC (for its second year).  Therefore this past weekend I took the opportunity to branch out to Chicago to check out another such Con that has quickly been picking up steam.  This convention that I speak of is the Chicago Comics & Entertainment Expo (also known as C2E2). (more…)

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As stated before, Awesome Con had much to offer this year for those who attended. Boasting a variety of film & television guests this year, the choices were endless in terms of the special guests one could cross paths with.  Therefore (action stars aside) I took the opportunity to sit down with Awesome Con special guest, Ernie Hudson.  Though he is most likely recognized as Winston Zeddemore (more…)

One of the many characters that made up the costume contest for Saturday.

Rai, one of the many characters in the costume contest for Saturday.

Among the many scheduled events to see at this years Awesome Con, the biggest mystery is, who’s going to be in the best costume. Cosplay, short for costume play, is the art of dressing up as characters from all areas of fiction. These aren’t K-Mart brands plastic and cloth children’s Halloween costumes. Cosplayers go through great lengths to achieve the most authentic look possible.  The participants of the Costume Contest for Saturday came in all shapes and sizes. One of my

He bleached his hair and torched his jacket for that authentic half acid burn look.

He bleached his hair and torched his jacket for that authentic half acid burn look.

favourite costumes was of The Shredder from Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. One of the keys to successful cosplaying is not breaking character. When the moderator of the contest asked The Shredder who he was; the voice behind the mask sweaked, “I’m The Shredder.” The room erupted in cheers for the little kid who’s costume rivaled the pros. That may be the best thing about cosplaying; there’s no wrong way to do it and, everyone everywhere  has a chance to involved.

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This weekend, as you well know by now, I was in attendance at this year’s Awesome Con.  Similar to last year (its first year), the convention had a great deal to offer (and then some) to its attendees.  With that said, one of the stand-out features of this year’s event was its wide variety of special guests from the movie and tv realm.  One example of this would be action star, Kevin Sorbo.  Perhaps best know (more…)

True Blood Season 7

This summer Bon Temps will never be the same as the new trailer unveils for Season 7 (the final season) of HBO‘s popular True Blood series.  Though the trailer is not even a minute long, it sets a dire tone for many of the series’ characters.  After watching the trailer, (more…)

kevin sorbo the expendable

This August THE EXPENDABLES franchise will return with its third installment aptly titled THE EXPENDABLES 3, complete its all-star team of action stars.  However, according to one actor, the franchise would have included another action star, had the casting played out (more…)

Bigger and better, Awesome Con impresses.

Bigger and better, 2nd Awesome Con impresses

One year ago, geeks, dweebs, nerds, bronies and cosplayers descended upon the Walter Washington Convention Center; here in my sleepy hamlet of Washington D.C. There are other conventions in the area throughout the year; from videogames to My Little Pony. However, there weren’t any conventions that combined all aspects of pop culture. Such an event would be (…wait for it…) awesome!

Saturday: Noon, close to the front of the line.

Saturday: Noon, close to the front of the line.

Last year’s Awesome Con, though it was considered a success; was a smaller 2 day event. The 2014 edition is bigger in every way. More space, more vendors, more events, movie screenings and more. Awesome Con 2014 is evolving before our eyes and Reel Film News was there in force to cover it all.

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Awesome Con DC

Well, it’s that time of year again!  This weekend will see the return of DC’s very own comic book convention known only as Awesome Con!  Started by Ben Penrod and Steve Anderson in 2013,  the event was created as a celebration of popular culture; more specifically,  as a comic-con that embraces all aspects of geekdom and pop culture, which includes comic books, collectibles, toys, games, original art, cosplay, and (more…)

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Back at San Diego Comic Con last July, Warner Bros. dropped the bomb that Superman would be going head-to-head with Batman in its as yet untitled MAN OF STEEL sequel.  Though the studio has remained relatively tight lipped about the film’s plot as well as its characters’ motivations, it has released (in the months since this announcement) a steady stream of information regarding the sequel’s casting and its official release date (which will no longer happen in 2015, but in 2016 instead).  Continuing their trend of carefully placed announcements, there is now word of who will be scoring the blockbuster sequel… (more…)

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