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Lynne Martin Talks Movies

THE AGE OF SEQUELS

As I once again stood in line at the box office, I couldn't help but notice the sequel posters adorning the theater's coveted wall space. Some highly anticipated by the viewing public, INDEPENDENCE DAY: RESURGENCE (2016) and MY BIG FAT GREEK WEDDING 2 (2016), others new releases appear to be more aptly categorized as projects propelled by the studio's bottom line. 


ICE AGE: COLLISION COURSE (2016) will open with little fanfare as Fox Studios trusts that parents will recognize the brand and fill the seats. The fifth installment in a franchise that has already earned over 920 million dollars, how can we really question this kind of financial success?


What I do question is the loss of originality in favor of the bottom line. I can only imagine how many new and inventive projects have been stalled in favor of a reboot being green lighted by the studio for little more than its financial guarantee. Are we, the viewing audience, so conditioned to pick the familiar that studios are only acting in response?


I believe that the age of sequels can be directly linked back to the struggling state of our economy. As paying customers, most are looking for a positive experience and don't like taking a risk at the box office. Organizing a movie night for a family of four, complete with parking and snacks, can be a noticeable hit to the wallet...not to mention that it only entertains the brood for roughly two hours. So with a credit card in hand, many customers are going with a product they trust vs. a new offering with no proven track record. Sad but true, and more than understandable in today's economy.


I thought it might be worth mentioning that out of all the projected 2017 new releases, eight of the movies had reached at least the third installment stage. I've included a short list for your amusement:


PITCH PERFECT 3, INSIDIIOUS: CHAPTER 4, BAD BOYS III, CARS 3, DESPICABLE ME 3, WOLVERINE 3, FAST 8, and of course, FRIDAY THE 13TH: CAMP BLOOD which will actually be the fourteenth installment in that particular slasher franchise.


As long as the viewing public continues to vote with an ever shrinking wallet, I think we had better get used to new releases being little more than sequels with familiar characters and reworked plotlines.

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Movie Reviews

Movie Reviews

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Produced by Marvel Comics and distributed by Walt Disney Pictures, audiences had to know that GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY (2014) starring Chris Pratt, Vin Diesel, and Bradley Cooper was going to be nothing short of a blockbuster. With a sequel already in the works along with countless merchandise opportunities, I guarantee that we have not seen the last of...
 
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Already touted as a film that will appeal to male audiences, INTERSTELLAR (2014) starring Mathew McConaughey, Anne Hathaway, and Jessica Chastain will definitely draw student mathematicians and amateur astrologists back to the silver screen. Although I was impressed with how the director wove huge volumes of scientific theory into a watchable storyline, I still found myself repeatedly checking the...
 
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Although HORNS (2014) starring Daniel Radcliffe, Juno Temple, and Max Minghella made its original debut at TIFF back in 2013, it didn’t receive worldwide distribution until a year later in October of 2014. A strange combination of supernatural horror, young romance, and even dark comedy, HORNS will leave most audiences stumbling for a foothold. The sight of ‘Harry Potter’...
 
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Whether you view war as a necessary evil fought by courageous soldiers protecting our freedoms…or an absolute waste of human lives and resources accomplishing little more than population control, I guarantee you that FURY (2014) starring Brad Pitt, Shia LaBeouf, and Logan Lerman will have a lasting effect on you. FURY follows the command of army...
 
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Apocalyptic thrillers have always been one of my favorite movie genres…that was until I stumbled across LEFT BEHIND (2014) starring Nicolas Cage, Lea Thompson, and Cassi Thomson. Unsure of whether it wants to be a film expounding love and Christian values, or a disaster movie with eye popping special effects, LEFT BEHIND effectively manages to alienate audiences on both...
 
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When the two lead actors deliver equally powerful performances, it’s nearly impossible to guess who’s going to garner the first Oscar nomination for THE JUDGE (2014) starring Robert Downey Jr, Robert Duvall, and Vera Farmiga. So much more than a run-of-the-mill courtroom drama, THE JUDGE explores the sometimes volatile and often painful relationships that build the framework we call...
 
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With the announcement of a sequel seven months prior to THE EQUALIZER (2014) starring Denzel Washington, Marton Csokas, and Chloe Grace Moretz even being released in theaters, you’d automatically expect something quite special from this film. Fortunately, you won’t be disappointed as long as you have a pension for cold and calculated violence, and a stomach for the gore...
 
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ANNABELLE (2014) starring Ward Horton, Annabelle Wallis, and Alfre Woodard had been touted as both a prequel and a spin-off to the wildly successful horror movie THE CONJURING (2013). Once viewing audiences realize that the movie’s director had previously filled the role of cinematographer for CHILD’S PLAY 3 back in 1992, it doesn’t take long to grasp the notion...
 
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Even the best of marriages are complicated unions, continually evolving over the passage of time. GONE GIRL (2014) starring Ben Affleck, Rosamund Pike, and Neil Patrick Harris serves to remind us through repeated twists and turns that no one truly knows what goes on behind closed doors. Based on the bestseller by Gillian Flynn, GONE GIRL will have you...
 
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AS ABOVE SO BELOW (2014) starring Perdita Weeks, Ben Feldman, and Edwin Hodge is the latest horror story to be told through the lenses of the ‘found footage’ genre. Loosely based on the young adult novel LEGION OF DWELLERS, written by Joel T. McGrath, this updated version has definitely been formatted and rewritten to appeal to a twenty-something...
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