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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.

Continue Reading...
Movie Reviews

Movie Reviews

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AUGUST: OSAGE COUNTY (2013) starring Meryl Streep, Dermot Mulroney, and Julia Roberts was conveniently released to coincide with the annual award season, but I'm not sure why they even bothered as it pales in comparison to many of the year's features. Sitting through AUGUST: OSAGE COUNTY was a lot like having a tooth pulled. You realize it might be...
 
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Ensemble casts with this much collected star power do not come along very often, so when LAST VEGAS (2013) starring Robert De Niro, Michael Douglas, Kevin Kline, and Morgan Freeman was released, I jumped at the chance to view this picture. With personal film credits a mile long, these four veterans of stage and screen exhibit some serious talent...
 
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Some movies we watch for entertainment, others we view out of passing curiosity. 12 YEARS A SLAVE (2013) starring Chiwetel Ejiofar, Michael K. Williams, and Michael Fassbender offers a glimpse into humanity's past that we must watch for our own education. This extraordinary film is an adaptation of the autobiography of Solomon Northup, painfully revealing the inhumane treatment of...
 
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SAVING MR. BANKS (2013) starring Emma Thompson, Tom Hanks, and Colin Farrell is a lavish Disney production that brings us just the right balance of whimsy and historical reverence for the iconic figures of Walt Disney and P.L. Travers, the writer of perennial favorite MARY POPPINS (1964). With only a glimpse of the dancing penguins and nary a whiff...
 
5
Whenever a director tackles a historical drama with such profound turning points as the abolishment of slavery, the civil rights movement, and the end of apartheid, you can bet that there is going to be dissention among viewing audiences. LEE DANIELS' THE BUTLER (2013) starring Forest Whitaker, Oprah Winfrey, and John Cusack has not been exempt from the waves...
 
3
Tempered with the slightest hint of science fiction, HER (2013) starring Joaquin Phoenix, Amy Adams, and Scarlett Johansson was a surprise from the opening credits. On paper, the story of a man falling for his female-voiced operating system didn't exactly pull me to the theatre. However, once I was settled in for the movie, I was surprised how quickly...
 
4
Only last year, we watched Academy Award winner Jennifer Lawrence walk away with the Oscar for best actress in a leading role with her co-star Bradley Cooper also earning rave reviews for SILVER LININGS PLAYBOOK (2012). Fast forward one year later, and AMERICAN HUSTLE (2013) starring Christian Bale, Amy Adams, Bradley Cooper, and Jennifer Lawrence is once again rising...
 
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Choosing roles for many actors can be as unpredictable as a crapshoot, gambling on what will eventually materialize into a megahit or a box office flop. DALLAS BUYERS CLUB (2013) starring Mathew McConaughey, Jennifer Garner, and Jared Leto may turn out to be the pivotal roles that all three actors are remembered for long after they have retired from...
 
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The Academy Awards are just around the corner, and we're finally blessed with the release of the year's big boys. THE WOLF OF WALL STREET (2013) starring Leonardo DiCaprio, Jonah Hill, and Margo Robbie is based on the personal memoirs of Jordan Belfort, written at the urging of Tommy Chong as both celebrities served time together in federal prison....
 
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Movie Categories

Whether choosing the word re-imagination or remake to describe the latest version of CARRIE (2013) starring Chloe Grace Moretz, Julainne Moore, or Gabriella Wilde, let's hope that new audience members take a moment to recognize that they're treading over the hallowed ground of a Stephen King and Brian De Palma masterpiece from the 70's. This latest remake...
193 results - showing 51 - 60
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