Sunday, September 30, 2012

NFL Picks 2012 Week 4

Unscripted NFL Predictions
2012 Week 4

Well, last week were my worst picks yet. I went 5-11; Ouch! Many of the losses were major upsets (ie: Vikings beating 49ers, Seahawks beating Packers, etc.), but some were really close (ie: Jets beating Dolphins, Raiders beating Steelers).

Luckily, I had a pretty strong start to the year and sinceI wasn't the only one who had a bad week, I ended the weekend looking at a 24-24 record, tied for 6th place out of 16.

But on to this week, with at least 6 hard-to-call games; Wish me luck...

3 Easist Win Predictions

* The Packers were a close 4th.
* This is the Texans 3rd week out of 4 as an "Easy Pick."

3 Toughest Win Predictions

* All NFC East teams! And the Giants are playing the 4th division team, the Eagles!
* The Lions, Chargers, and Seahawks were close behind as "Tough Picks."

Friday, September 28, 2012

Weekend Preview 9/28-30/2012

Weekend Preview 9/28-10/4/2012

There are 13 films coming out in wide and limited release this week. Starting Friday are 11 movies; Looper looks to be the best, but Hellbound?, Hotel Transylvania, and Stars in Shorts (a collection of short films) look interesting as well. Plus I'm sorta in love with Anna Kendrick, so I secretly want to see Pitch Perfect too. Later in the week we see the re-release of two classic films.

Click "Read More" for trailers of Bringing Up Bobby, Hellbound?, The Hole 3D, Hotel Transylvania, The Iran Job, Looper, The Other Dream Team, Pitch Perfect, Solomon Kane, Stars in Shorts, Won't Back Down, E.T., and Lawrence of Arabia.

Follow the Leader

Review: The Master

With prodigious ambitions and unparallelled talent, The Master is a remarkable feat of superior acting and extraordinary cinematography, which at times struggles to synchronize both voice and message.

Academy Award Nominee Joaquin Phoenix (Walk the Line, Gladiator) is Freddie, a WWII veteran struggling to cope with civilian life, intentionally disrupting the normalcy of his new environment with self-concocted chemically-altered liquors, explicit sexual fantasies, and spates of sudden rage. Freddie wanders from job to job, fired from each of them, until he meets the Master.

Academy Award Winner Philip Seymour Hoffman (Capote, Doubt) is Lancaster Dodd, the founder and charismatic leader of a faith-based organization known as "The Cause." Lancaster's influence is growing, but he takes a specific liking to Freddie and his sure-to-be poisonous drinks, much to the chagrin of some of his followers, including his wife.

Academy Award Nominee Amy Adams (The Fighter, Doubt) is Peggy Dodd, Lancaster's spouse and antagonist to Freddie. It is possible Peggy believes in The Cause more than her husband and her passion drives her as a behind-the-scenes agent of the organization.

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Tight Race on a Short Track

Weekend Recap: 9/21-23/2012

The box office may not have made much money this past weekend, but it still had movie buffs excited because the race to the top was a tight, photo-finish between End of Watch, House at the End of the Street, and Trouble with the Curve.

End of Watch finally pulled ahead to first place with $13.1 million. House at the End of the Street and Trouble with the Curve both trailed closely behind with $12.3 million and $12.2 million, respectively, for second and third place. All three movies are pretty much on par with other films in their genre.

Sunday, September 23, 2012

NFL Picks 2012 Week 3

Unscripted NFL Predictions
2012 Week 3

Wow, I did not have a great record last week. A bunch of upsets (Cardinals beat the Patriots, Seahawks beat the Cowboys, Panthers beat the Saints, Rams beat the Redskins) caused me to go 8-8.

There's a silver lining though, overall I'm still 19-13 and tied in the picks competition I'm a part of for 3rd place out of 16!!!

Unfortunately, there's another round of games that should be pretty close this week, so here goes nothin'...

3 Easiest Win Predictions

3 Toughest Win Predictions

* The Dolphins were a very close 4th.

Thursday, September 20, 2012

Weekend Preview 9/21-23/2012

Weekend Preview 9/21-23/2012

There are 13 movies coming out in wide and limited release this weekend. The 4 big ones will be Trouble with the Curve, House at the End of the Street, Dredd, and End of Watch. Out of the limited releases, I'd say About Cherry and Unconditional look the best, while How to Survive a Plague tackles a very important subject. Then there's still 6 other movies coming out!

Click "Read More" for trailers of 10 Years, 17 Girls, About Cherry, Backwards, Brooklyn Brothers Beat the Best, Diana Vreeland: The Eye Has to Travel, Dredd, End of Watch, House at the End of the Street, How to Survive a Plague, My Uncle Rafael, Trouble with the Curve, and Unconditional.

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Box Office Remains Lifeless

Weekend Recap: 9/14-16/2012

Whoever shot down the box office a couple of weeks ago must have remembered Zombieland Rule #2: The Double Tap, because even the new Resident Evil movie couldn't bring it back from the dead.

Resident Evil Retribution (review here) found itself in first place with $21 million, a lower opening than all of its predecessors, aside from the original (look for a more in-depth comparison next week). However, the international movie market continues to display its surprising growth, handing another $49.6 million to RE Retribution from 50 markets and pretty much guaranteeing a decent worldwide gross and the subsequent announcement of another sequel.

Resident Evil Starts to Decay

Review: Resident Evil Retribution

For being a film franchise based on a video game series, the Resident Evil films haven’t really been all that bad; cheesy and over-the-top, but entertaining.

The first Resident Evil recounted the birth of the zombie T-virus in a secret Umbrella facility. In Resident Evil Apocalypse, the end of times begins as the outbreak begins to spread throughout Raccoon City. Resident Evil Extinction shows us that the world has indeed been overrun with zombies and society has been exterminated. Resident Evil Afterlife introduced the rebellion against Umbrella and showed humanity might be revived.

See how each film has been a progression of an overall story? And how each title actually gave indication of that film’s theme?

Forget all of that with Resident Evil Retribution, in which the plot takes a step backward and retribution has absolutely nothing to do with it.

Sunday, September 16, 2012

NFL Picks 2012 Week 2

Unscripted NFL Predictions 2012

Last week was the first week of the season, so it is arguably a harder set of games to pick, but I was still able to go 11-5 and ended up in 3rd place out of 16 in the picks competition I'm a part of. So let's look at Week 2.

3 Easiest Win Predictions

* The Cowboys were a very close 4th.

3 Toughest Win Predictions

Friday, September 14, 2012

Weekend Preview 9/14-16/2012

Weekend Preview: 9/14-16/2012

There are 14 films out this weekend in limited and wide release. The Master, which will expand into wide release next week, will likely prove to be the best of them, but Arbitrage and The Perks of Being a Wallflower are receiving positive reviews as well and I've heard Finding Nemo looks amazing in 3D. After the midnight showing, I can already tell you that Resident Evil 5 is mindless fun, even if not as good as its predecessors. And beyond those, there's still 9 other movies out!

Click "Read More" for trailers of After, Arbitrage, Bait 3D, Bangkok Revenge, Finding Nemo 3D, Last Ounce of Courage, Liberal Arts, The Master, The Perks of Being a Wallflower, Resident Evil: Retribution, Step Up to the Plate, Stolen, The Trouble with the Truth, and The Waiting Room.

Dybbuk in a Box

Review: The Possession

It’s not Halloween or even October yet, but it’s about that time that studios begin to release scary movies at a higher frequency. (And yes, it is getting earlier and earlier, like stores putting up Christmas decorations earlier and earlier. Speaking of which, there was a Christmas movie released this past weekend; crazy!)

Anyways, leading the fall season is the PG-13 horror film, The Possession. Now, I’m usually skeptical of horror films that are not rated R. I know that there are bad R-rated scary movies, but I can think of some really good ones too. But I can’t think of any good PG-13 horror movies. Insidious? The Woman in Black (review here)? No thank you.

So, needless to say, I went into The Possession with pretty low expectations, which may be why I enjoyed the film a bit more than I thought I would. That’s not to say the movie is all that good, it’s just not all that bad.

In The Possession, a young girl buys an antique box at a yard sale, unaware that it contains a malicious ancient spirit known in Jewish folklore as a Dybbuk. The girl's estranged parents reunite as they attempt to save their daughter.

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Worst Weekend in 4 Years

Weekend Recap: 9/7-9/2012

Yep, you read that title correctly. This past weekend was the lowest grossing weekend at the box office since this same weekend in 2008. You can blame the start of school, or college football, or the NFL, but any way you slice it, this weekend was bad.

The Possession (review coming soon) came out on top for the second weekend in a row with $9.5 million for a 10-day total of $33.3 million, a decent showing for a movie of its type. This is the eighth weekend a film produced by Lionsgate (The Hunger Games, The Expendables 2) has led the box office, more than any other studio so far this year (Universal and Sony both have seven).

Monday, September 10, 2012

It's Not About The Bird?

Review: The Words

Even though everybody knows that the bird is the word, they may not know that The Words opened a few days ago in the midst one of the worst box office weekends in years (more on that in the upcoming Weekend Recap). Perhaps the film's failure to be about "the bird" contributed to its low attendance, but, Family Guy jokes aside, I'd say the film got just about the popularity it deserved.

The Words is actually three stories in one, told in concurrent layers. It's not Inception, but let me break it down for you.

The film begins with an author (Dennis Quaid, Far From Heaven) reading an excerpt from his new book. From these excerpts, and later as he discusses his book with a fan (Olivia Widle, People Like Us), we are told the story held within the book of another writer (Bradley Cooper, Limitless) who plagiarizes a novel he found in an old briefcase. His act of immorality affects his relationship with his wife (Zoe Saldana, Avatar) and leads to a confrontation with the original author, now an Old Man (Jeremy Irons, Reversal of a Fortune). The Old Man then recounts his own life as a Young Man (Ben Barnes, Prince Caspian) falling in love with a girl (Nora Arnezender, Paris 36), who accidentally leaves his debut, and apparently masterful, novel in a briefcase on a train.

Sunday, September 9, 2012

NFL Picks 2012 Week 1

Unscripted NFL Predictions 2012

* I know this post is a bit late; if this does become a regular series on the blog, I'll try to get it up before games start on Sundays.

** The first week of the NFL is always a hard one to call since preseason never really lets you know how good a team truly is, so take this first post with a grain of salt!

3 Easiest Win Predictions:


3 Toughest Win Predictions:


Friday, September 7, 2012

Weekend Preview 9/7-9/2012

There are 11 movies coming out in wide and limited release this weekend. The 2 films getting the widest release are The Words, starring Bradley Cooper, and The Cold Light of Day with Henry Cavill (the new Superman) and Bruce Willis as yet another CIA agent. But the 2 movies that are getting the most positive attention are indie films. Bachelorette tries to be more than another Bridesmaids, while it seems the underrated Melanie Lynskey is finally breaking out in Hello, I Must Be Going. And then there's still 7 other movies coming out!

Click "Read More" for trailers of Bachelorette, Branded, The Cold Light of Day, The Details, Hello I Must Be Going, The Inbetweeners, Keep the Lights On, Raiders of the Lost Ark IMAX, [REC]3: Genesis, Toys in the Attic, and The Words.

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Scary Weekend Records

Weekend Recap: 8/31-9/2/2012

While the biggest news of the holiday weekend should have been my birthday, three of the films at the box office got a bit more attention; two for setting a record to be proud of and one for setting one of the most embarrassing records imaginable (for movies at least).

In first place during what is typically a pretty slow weekend was The Possession (review coming soon), which scared up $17.7 million over its first three days and an estimated $3.6 million on Labor Day. With a four-day total of $21.3 million, The Possession has earned the title of being the second highest grossing Labor Day weekend movie ever, behind only Rob Zombie's 2007 Halloween remake ($30.6 million).

Sunday, September 2, 2012

NFL Predictions 2012

Unscripted NFL Predictions 2012

The new NFL season starts this week, but it's never too early to make Super Bowl and playoff predictions! Just to prove the blog isn't entirely about movies, this post is my guess at how the NFL football year will end. (If this ends up being a popular post, I may start a new series on the blog with my weekly picks!)

Super Bowl Champions: New England Patriots (50% confidence)
*Originally I had the Packers winning the Super Bowl with 50% confidence, but as any fan knows, the heart often leads the head, and I couldn't help but predict a NE win. So maybe it's more of a conviction than a prediction. Anyways, Go Pats!