MOV067: “Scheiße”

In this 67th Reel of COL Movies, the boys head back in time for a little exercise – well, they watch someone else get exercise – in 1998’s German crime thriller, “Run Lola Run”. After working up a sweat, they head to the theater to see if Marcus Nispel’s reboot of “Conan The Barbarian” is it really as bad as all the critics say it is? In the future, they screen the trailer for the 4th installment of the Tom Cruise franchise, “Mission Impossible – Ghost Protocol”. Is this a mission they’ll choose to accept? Or will the secretary disavow all knowledge of the review. Guess you’ll have to wait until December when the movie comes out to find out! All of this and movie news about how the earthquakes in Japan are making it tough for “The Wolverine”, and the titles “Toy Story” might have had. It’s an episode you won’t soon forget…or may find yourself reliving over and over…aww…Scheiße!

News:

The Past: Lola Rennt (Run Lola Run)
Rotten Tomatoes: 92% Fresh, 88% Audience

Director: Tom Tykwer

Starring: Franka Potente, Moritz Bleibtreu and Herbert Knaup

Trivia:

  • Tom Tykwer hated the empty space on the wall and asked production designer Alexander Manasse to paint a picture of Kim Novak as she was in Vertigo. But Alexander didn’t remember what she looked like, so Tom suggested he painted her from behind. Alexander completed the picture within fifteen minutes.
  • During shooting, Franka Potente could not wash her hair for seven weeks because the red hair color was very sensitive to water and would have got lighter with every washing.
  • The two sentences at the opening (“The ball is round” and “The game lasts 90 minutes”) are famous quotes by German soccer coaching legend Sepp Herberger.
  • When Manni says Shrimp in Florida he is actually giving credit to the person who wrote the movie. It is a family nickname of this uncredited person.
  • The blind woman that Manni borrows the phone card from is Moritz Bleibtreu’s mother, Monica Bleibtreu.
  • The shot where the roulette ball lands on 20 was not a trick shot – the crew simply filmed the ball dropping into the wheel, and it hit 20 on one of their first takes.
  • Hans Paetsch, who speaks the narration at the beginning, is Germany’s most popular fairy tale narrator. His characteristic voice is easily recognized by anyone who grew up with fairy tale records in Germany.
  • The glass clock in the bank is broken using a small air rifle firing a small stone.
  • It took nearly five weeks to persuade a supermarket in Berlin to allow them to shoot the robbery sequence.
  • This film contains about 1581 transitions (edits, dissolves, fades, wipes, etc) in 71 minutes of action (i.e. excluding the credits, and pre-credits sequence). This equates to an Average Shot Length of about 2.7 seconds. Interestingly, the editing is relatively slower towards the end of the film. For most contemporary films, the opposite is the norm.
  • Lola screams for twenty seconds in the Roulette scene, she also bets to the number twenty, the only bills she had were twenties, the first story lasts twenty minutes and twenty minutes was also the time she had to get the money.
  • The money bag, stolen by a homeless man, has Russian lettering on it – “Malossol Original”. It’s actually a bag for Russian Caspian caviar under the brand “Malossol Original”.
  • In the film, Manni needs 100,000 marks. In 1998, the exchange rate for marks was 1.789 making this sum equivalent to $55,897.15 in the US. At the end, Lola winnings amount to 126,000 marks ($70,430.41).
  • The decoration on the wall of the teller is a bill from Mozambique issued by Banco Nacional Utramarino in the value of 100 Escudos.
  • During the third sequence after the head on car collision a moped rider rear ends the white car and lands on the windshields. Most viewers do not realize that this is the man who stole Lola’s moped, so he gets his comeuppance in the end.

Talking Points:

  • Different types of film used, color, animation, black and white, video.
  • English or German?
  • Flash forwards.
  • The effects of one even can affect lot of other things.
  • What does the blind lady know?
  • Did Lola Remember the previous iterations?
  • Did you have a “favorite” version?

What We’ve Learned:

  • Keep an eye on your Moped
  • Don’t run that much in flat boots. Get some sneaks! (Shin splints!!)
  • Avoid the guy standing in the stairwell with the dog – he’s a jerk.
  • Screaming at the top of your lungs makes everything better.
  • Don’t leave the bag of cash you’re supposed to deliver to criminals on the subway. Nothing good can come of it.
  • German is NOT a sexy language. (Fuzz Disagrees!)
  • Schtop

Trailer:

Recommendations:
Jeff: One of the most brilliant films of all time. I have a hard time understanding how anyone could not want this in their movie collection.
Ray: An enjoyable film… but I will say films with a breakneck non-stop pace are not for everyone.
Steve: Super cool movie…hard to decide which version of the story I like the best. Super creative…and Manni’s not hard to look at.

The Present: Conan The Barbarian
Rotten Tomatoes: 24% Rotten 46% Audience

Director: Marcus Nispel

Starring: Jason Momoa, Ron Perlman and Rose McGowan

Trivia:

  • Kellan Lutz and Jared Padalecki were considered for the lead, but the role went to Jason Momoa.
  • Dolph Lundgren, then Mickey Rourke were in talks to play Corin, Conan’s father, but Rourke turned it down to do Immortals before Ron Perlman was cast.
  • Ron Perlman, who plays Conan’s father Corin, previously voiced Conan himself in the video game Conan and the unreleased animated film Conan: Red Nails.
  • The film had spent seven years in development at Warner Bros. before the rights were shifted to Nu Image/Millennium Films in 2007, with a clause wishing for immediate start on production.
  • Lionsgate and Sony Pictures entered negotiations for distribution, with the film seeing many directors, prominently Brett Ratner, before settling on Nispel in 2009 and subsequently bringing together a cast and crew.
  • Filming began on March 15, 2010 and concluded on June 5, 2010. Filming was first hoped to be started in Spring 2008. Nothing was set until Ratner came on board. Filming had a set date for August 24, 2008, in Bulgaria. Ratner however departed in May that year, and the start-date for filming was pushed back, with South Africa being revealed as another filming destination.. Filming finally began, in Bulgaria, on March 15, 2010
  • The film was first released on August 17, 2011 in four countries: France, Belgium, Iceland and the Philippines
  • The film had a 3-D conversion in post production.
  • Early in the pre-production process Conan was a temporary title for the film, until it was changed to Conan 3D. Finally, early on December 2010, the title was definitely changed to Conan the Barbarian, as was titled the John Millius 1982 film

Talking Points:

  • Did it come off very spoofish at times? (baby, eggs, catapulting a prisoner)
  • Only performance worth noting – Rose McGowan (Steve)
  • The sand fighter guys were the coolest part.
  • The most generic bad guy ever… his daughter should have been the main antagonist

What We Learned:

  • If your wife is stabbed in battle, it just takes one quick cut to remove the baby and he comes out clean-ish.
  • Cesarean Sections were BRUTAL back in the day.
  • Before you Wield it, you must learn it.
  • If your mother names you Co-NAN, it’s annoying when everyone else calls you Co-nun.

Trailer:

Recommendations:
Jeff: It was alright. I really enjoyed myself. Okay to see in a theater, but okay to wait for DVD.
Ray: It’s Conan.. did it need to be remade? no, but I was hoping that maybe it would help get this kinda movie back into theaters
Steve: Boo…hiss. Should have gone straight to DVD. Why didn’t we see “Fright Night” this week?

The Future: Mission Impossible: Ghost Protocol

Director: Brad Bird

Starring: Tom Cruise, Jeremy Renner and Paula Patton

Summary:

When a terrorist bombing destroys the Kremlin, the United States government initiates a black ops “ghost protocol” and disavows the entire Impossible Mission Force. Ethan Hunt and his team are to be blamed for the attack, but are allowed to escape as part of a plan to enable them to operate in the dark, outside of their agency. However, Hunt is warned that if any member of his team is captured during their mission, they will be charged as terrorists planning to incite global nuclear war. Ethan is then forced to work with ex-IMF agent Brandt, who knows more about Hunt and his past than even Hunt himself.

Trivia:

  • Brad Bird’s live-action directorial debut.
  • Anthony Mackie, Christopher Egan and Kevin Zegers were considered to play Brandt.
  • Kristin Kreuk and Lauren German were considered to play Jane Carter.
  • Jacinda Barrett auditioned for a role and even revealed some information about the project’s reboot direction.
  • Jeremy Renner’s character Brandt, was specifically created as the eventual replacement for Tom Cruise’s character Ethan Hunt for when Cruise decides to step away from the franchise.
  • The film was originally announced with a working name of Mission: Impossible 4, and codenamed “Aries” during early production.
  • Rumors initially mentioned that the film might not even carry the Mission: Impossible name, though this was later discounted.
  • Principal photography began by September 30, 2010. Pictures of the set were leaked to the internet showing Cruise in a Russian officer disguise..
  • Filming took place in Dubai, Prague, Moscow, Mumbai, and Vancouver.
  • The film was partially shot with IMAX cameras.
  • The first full, official trailer was released on June 29, 2011, and attached to Transformers: Dark of the Moon.

Trailer:

Excitement:
Jeff: *giggles*
Ray: I was never impressed with the MI franchise, but this trailer has me wanting to see this. Hooray for Brad Bird!
Steve: Another “boys and their toys” movie. Slick and high tech looking, but I still haven’t seen 2 & 3.

Coming Attractions:

The Past

The Present

The Future

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MOV066: “Today’s word is……Expiation!”

Despite being listed as Reel 65 on iTunes, this is the 66th Reel of COL Movies! We recorded a whole show that was lost out there in cyberland. /cry. But moving forward, the boys head into the ethos and land in Maine where they join the people trying to survive Stephen King’s “The Mist”. Heading to the theater, they check out the excellent, yet controversial, civil rights era film “The Help”. In trailer news, they dissect Nolan’s final Batman film, “The Dark Knight Rises”. In news, they talk about a possible “Blade Runner” reboot, more “Man of Steel” news, the fate of “The Lone Ranger”, and are you ready for another “Austin Powers” movie, baby? Welcome to Reel 66…where today’s word is…expiation!

News:

The Past: The Mist
Rotten Tomatoes: 73% Fresh 64% Audience

Directors: Frank Darabont

Starring: Thomas Jane, Marcia Gay Harden, Laurie Holden

Trivia:

  • This isn’t William Sadler’s first time with The Mist. He played David Drayton in an audio version of the story.
  • To help save time on the tight schedule, the producers and director Frank Darabont hired the camera crew from The Shield, to shoot the film. This camera crew is able to move fast, due to the hectic TV production schedule. There was an “A” and a “B” unit, which cut down on production time.
  • In the opening shot of the film, David is painting in his room. The picture he’s drawing is a design from Stephen King’s Dark Tower series of the gunslinger Roland. Another design in the room is that of the poster of John Carpenter’s The Thing. John Carpenter also wrote and directed The Fog, which shares obvious themes with The Mist.
  • Besides the Gunslinger illustration at the beginning of the film, The Mist shares another direct connection to the Dark Tower series of novels, written by Stephen King. This is the line “My life for you,” spoken by Mrs. Carmody. This has been said by a number of villainous characters in the Dark Tower books, who had sworn allegiance to Walter o’Dim, one of the major antagonists. (Walter o’Dim made his first appearance in several earlier King novels, one the first being The Eyes of the Dragon, under the alias Randall Flagg, and the line is spoken there as well.) The Mist is one of the first short stories to refer to cross reference the Dark Tower. That same line, “My life for you,” is used by Trashcan in The Stand movie as well as the book. This is also a reference made to Randall Flagg although in a different book.
  • During an action scene in the film, a man runs into a wire rotating-book shelf in the grocery store. If you look carefully, you can clearly see that all the books on the shelf are written by Stephen King.
  • When the group is in the next-door pharmacy, David (Thomas Jane) can be seen taking a comic book as promised for his son – an issue of “Hellboy”. Later in real life, Jane directed the comicbook movie Dark Country which starred Ron Perlman, the star of the movie version of Hellboy
  • Frank Darabont agreed to make the film with Dimension only under the condition that no matter what, they wouldn’t change the scripted ending. They agreed.
  • Director Frank Darabont originally wanted the film shown in black and white. The 2-disc DVD release contains Darabont’s black and white version on the second disc.
  • The pharmacy next to the Food House store is called “King’s Pharmacy”, most likely a reference to author Stephen King. Coincidentally, Stephen King himself once had a cameo as a pharmacist in the film adaptation of his novel Thinner.
  • The Dark Tower poster being worked on by David Drayton was actually painted by Drew Struzan, an artist famous for his movie posters. (Star Wars, Indiana Jones franchise, Harry Potter franchise, The Thing, Blade Runner, etc.) All of the posters in the studio at the beginning of the film were painted by Struzan, as was the film poster for this film.
  • Despite the setting in Maine, the film was shot entirely in Minden, Louisiana. To Frank Darabont’s delight, Stephen King could not distinguish it from Maine when watching the film
  • Thomas Jane sat in for a better part of the editing process, since he was interested to learn about it.
  • When David grabs a comic from the rack in the pharmacy, you can clearly see an issue of “The Goon” towards the bottom. Eric Powell, the creator of this comic, is shown on the special features as a friend of Frank Darabont and crew for the day.
  • Director Frank Darabont wanted to cast Stephen King in a supporting role, but King turned his offer down. The role eventually went to Brian Libby.
  • In the pharmacy scene, when David Drayton is collecting a comic book for his son, Frank Darabont proposed to Thomas Jane that he should grab a copy “The Punisher: War Journal” since Jane played the Punisher three years earlier. Jane declined because he had a falling out with the producers of the The Punisher franchise and decided not to return for the sequel. He instead grabs an issue of “HellBoy” as a shout out to friend Ron Perlman.
  • Intially developed at Paramount.
  • Shot in the six-week hiatus of The Shield with its cinematographer, two camera operators, their editor and the script supervisor, all of whom the director has worked with when he directed episodes of the show.
  • The first film Frank Darabont has made that is set in the present, barring the opening and closing scenes in The Green Mile.
  • The third film Frank Darabont has adapted from Stephen King’s work. The other two are The Shawshank Redemption and The Green Mile.
  • Frances Sternhagen’s second appearance in a Stephen King film adaptation. The first was Misery.
  • Frank Darabont’s shortest film to date.
  • Shot in 37 days.
  • Stephen King says that he was genuinely frightened by this adaption of his novel; Frank Darabont described that as the happiest moment of his career.
  • Norm is wearing a T-Shirt from WKIT Radio in Bangor, Maine. This is one of three radio stations owned by Stephen King.
  • The partially toppled highway sign towards the end of the film is an actual sign on Interstate 295 in Falmouth, Maine, on the southbound side of the highway (a little north of the Falmouth Spur).
  • This is Thomas Jane’s second Stephen King movie. He played Henry in Dreamcatcher.
  • David calls his son “Big Bill”, a reference to the character Bill Denbrough from Stephen King’s ‘It’. Bill Denbrough’s nickname was also “Big Bill”
  • Spoilers
  • The trivia items below may give away important plot points.
  • According to Cinefex magazine, there is a favorite scene near the end of the book that was not in the script. In the scene, David Dreyton and the others with him in the vehicle, witness a giant, 6-legged behemoth walk over them. Darabont originally had excised this scene from his script. However, several of the people working with the special effects company CafeFX, convinced him to put it back into the film.
  • WILHELM SCREAM: When Cornell dies.
  • Frank Darabont originally wrote an opening scene showing the military scientist referenced to by Private Jessup accidentally opening the dimension portal that allows the creatures and the mist to enter our world. Over dinner, Andre Braugher questioned Darabont whether this scene was necessary. After thinking about it for a week, Darabont was convinced to scrap the scene, leaving the nature of the mist more ambiguous.
  • Frank Darabont’s “controversial” ending actually comes directly from Stephen King’s source material. Written in first-person, David entertains this notion in his mind as a distant possibility, noting there are three bullets and four people (Dan Miller doesn’t make it to the car in the novella), but he ends his journal and leaves it in a restaurant the survivors have sought refuge in before the car runs out of gas. Darabont felt this ending was too ambiguous and wrote the story to its finite climax, and ending that Darabont says in the DVD commentary was endorsed by King as the ending King wished he would have thought of.
  • When the hacked-off piece of tentacle is poked in the loading dock, it sizzles, turns black, and melts into a puddle of black goo. This process is exactly what happens to the bizarre creatures that appear in Stephen King’s novel “From a Buick 8”. Those creatures also were speculated to have come from another dimension, possibly the same one.
  • Amanda has an empty six-shot revolver and two full speed-loaders in her purse. This means there are twelve rounds of ammunition for the revolver. During the course of the movie, exactly twelve rounds are fired before the revolver is out of ammunition.

Talking Points:

  • People call this a “monster movie”. Is it? Or more of a “hero”/close scare/dark scare? What would you say?
  • The Post 9/11 Allegory
  • Frank Darabont – he likes things with the word The in the title.
  • Director/Writer/Producer – The Walking Dead
  • Writer/Director – The Green Mile
  • Writer/Director – The Shawshank Redemption
  • Director – The Majestic
  • Writer – The Blob
  • Writer – The Young Indiana Jones Chronicles

What We’ve Learned:

  • There’s no court of appeals in hell
  • Just because you’re a lawyer doesn’t mean you’re helpful in a disaster situation.
  • If you scare people bad enough they will turn to anyone who offers them a solution
  • Don’t use flaming mops as a defensive strategy unless you’re in the desert.
  • As a species we are fundamentally insane

Trailer:

Recommendations:
Jeff:.This movie is fine. Well put together, good story, tragic ending. Recommend a look see, but not something for my movie collection at least.
Ray: An ok Survival/Horror flick saved by an awesome ending.
Steve: Such a good movie! Does a great job mixing the odd elements with down home people/situations. The ending is another Se7en-style surprise that just wrenches you in the gut.

Intermission: Flickchart

The Present: The Help
Rotten Tomatoes: 74% Fresh 93% Audience

Director: Tate Taylor

Starring: Emma Stone, Viola Davis, Octavia Spenser

Trivia:

  • Melissa Molinaro auditioned for the role of Celia Foote.
  • Costars Emma Stone and Bryce Dallas Howard have both played Gwen Stacy in a Spider-Man movie.
  • The book store in the film, Avent & Clark Booksellers, was named after Avent Clark, a production assistant on the film from Greenwood, MS.
  • Jessica Chastain, a vegan, ate soy ice cream melted in the microwave to gain weight for the role of Celia Foote.
  • Kathryn Stockett’s book on which this film is based was rejected 60 times before it was eventually published.

Talking Points:

What We Learned:

  • You is smart
  • You is Kind
  • You is Important
  • Write about what disturbs you, particularly if it bothers no one else.
  • Crisco is the most important invention since they put mayonnaise in a jar.
  • Love and hate are two horns on the same goat.
  • Oysters are a vehicle for crackers and ketchup
  • Courage sometimes skips a generation
  • I will never ever look at chocolate pie quite the same way again.

Trailer:

Recommendations:
Jeff: Wait? 2 hours and 26 minutes? Really? I didn’t even notice. This is definitely a go see movie. I can’t recommend it enough.
Ray: There was not one part of this movie I disliked. This runs the gamut from funny, to tearjerker. Sure its filled with stereotypes, but if it gets enough people in the theaters perhaps it can get people talking about the overall message the film is trying to convey.
Steve: Just a damn good movie. Looks like a chick-flick, but is just a good look at life at that time in Mississippi. There is some funny that helps us see positive in the negative of the time. But a good inspirational story about people taking a stand toward change.

The Future: The Dark Knight Rises

Director: Christopher Nolan

Starring: Christian Bale, Tom Hardy, Anne Hathaway, Joseph Gordon-Levitt and Gary Oldman

Trivia:

  • Doug Jones, Joseph Gordon-Levitt, David Tennant, Johnny Depp, Neil Patrick Harris, Michael C. Hall, Hugh Laurie, Leonardo DiCaprio, and James Franco were all rumored to play the Riddler before it was confirmed that the character would not appear in the film.
  • In May 2010, director Christopher Nolan stated that the Joker will not return in this film. He previously stated that Mr. Freeze and the Penguin would not be in the film either. Later it was confirmed that The Riddler would not appear either.
  • The last installment in Christopher Nolan’s Batman series.
  • Christopher Nolan is the first person to direct more than two Batman feature films.
  • Christian Bale has stated that he would not play Batman if Robin appeared anywhere in the trilogy. Christopher Nolan agreed not to include Robin as it would undermine the dark tone of his series.
  • Christian Bale is the first live action actor to portray Batman/Bruce Wayne in three Batman films. Kevin Conroy has played the character in seven animated films as of 2011 (including Batman Beyond: Return of the Joker).
  • Cinematographer Wally Pfister has expressed interest in shooting the entirety of the film in the IMAX format, as both Pfister and Christopher Nolan have expressed distaste for shooting the film in 3-D.
  • Anne Hathaway, Eva Green, Blake Lively, Charlize Theron, Vera Farmiga, Jessica Biel, Natalie Portman, Gemma Arterton, Kate Mara, Charlotte Riley and Keira Knightley all auditioned for the role of Selina Kyle. After the initial audition process, Hathaway, Green, Biel and Mara all screen tested. Ultimately, Hathaway won the role.
  • Christopher Nolan is the second person to direct a trilogy of superhero movies, after Sam Raimi (Spider-Man).
  • Kate Winslet, Naomi Watts, Rachel Weisz and Marion Cotillard were considered to play the love interest of Bruce Wayne. Cotillard won the role.
  • Robin Williams was rumored to play the role of Hugo Strange.
  • There was much speculation in the press when Anne Hathaway was announced as Selina Kyle if the actress would actually portray Kyle’s costumed alter-ego, Catwoman. In an interview with Oprah Winfrey following her stint as host of the Academy Awards, Hathaway let slip that her character indeed would don the Catwoman costume.
  • It was reported by Gary Oldman that Christopher Nolan told the actors the ending of the film verbally to avoid any leaks.
  • This film contains direct references to the “Knightfall” saga in the comic books, where Bane spreads chaos in Gotham in order to lure and weaken Batman, and break him. It also references the “Legacy” and “Bane of the Demon” storylines, where Bane meets Ras Al Ghul, and both have their own visions of becoming immortal and dominant.
  • One of the reasons why Christopher Nolan cast Tom Hardy as Bane, was because of his performance in the titular role in Bronson. Hardy stated that he took up the same training regime for both roles.
  • Around 10,000 extras were used to shoot the Gotham Rogues scene in Heinz Field. Some of the Pittsburgh Steelers played football players, including Hines Ward, who played himself.

Trailer:

Excitement:
Jeff: I’m excited for this movie even without the trailer. Sad that it’ll be the last Nolanverse Batman, but hey . . . in anycase, this trailer just didn’t get me excited. It’s just a teaser, want to see the real trailer next year.
Ray: I hope they break him… for good.
Steve: Bane!! YUM. Otherwise, just looks like another Nolan Batman movie. I’m not a Christian Bale Batman guy…so I don’t get jacked to see him.

Coming Attractions:The Past
The Present
The Future

MOV065: “I Am Jill’s Nipples”

Take a trip with the boys back to 1999 as they break the first two rules of “Fight Club” and talk about the dark polarizing comedy? Does the David Fincher film knock us on our ass? Or limp away with its teeth knocked out? Next the boys swing into the present for the reboot prequel (is that a requel?) Rise of The planet of the Apes Is this monkey business better than the 2001 reboot or do those damn dirty apes do it again? Next the boys get caught in the Web of yet another studio reboot of a successful franchise… Does “The Amazing Spiderman” really look all that amazing? All that plus news about Queer Action Stars, Dragons and Zombies.. Oh My! on this new reel of COL Movies #65 – “I am Jill’s Nipples”

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News:

The Past: Fight Club
Rotten Tomatoes: 81% Fresh Critics, 95% Audience

Directors: David Fincher

Starring: Brad Pitt, Edward Norton, Helena Bohnam Carter

Trivia:

  • Director David Fincher shot over 1,500 reels of film, more than three times the usual amount for a 120 minute film.
  • Tyler Durden (Brad Pitt) was originally going to recite a workable recipe for home-made explosives (as he does in the novel). But in the interest of public safety, the filmmakers decided to substitute fictional recipes for the real ones.
  • Author Chuck Palahniuk has stated that he found the film to be an improvement on his novel.
  • Although he refused to smoke in Rounders (his character played poker for cigarettes, but did not smoke), Edward Norton agreed to smoke for this film.
  • During an exterior shoot in an urban residential area, a man in one of the apartments above the working film crew got so annoyed with the noise that he threw a 40 oz. beer bottle at them. The bottle hit director of photography Jeff Cronenweth, who, although he was cut open, was not seriously injured; the man was arrested shortly afterward.
  • The reverse-tracking shot out of the trash can, an elaborate digitally animated sequence, was the very last shot to be added to the film. It required so much processing time that it almost had to be spliced in “wet” – i.e., fresh from the lab – so that the film could be duplicated on schedule. Due to the amount of reflective surfaces in the shot, it took almost 8 hours to render a single frame. The entire shot took 3 weeks to render.
  • In the short scene when Brad Pitt and Edward Norton are drunk and hitting golf balls, they really are drunk, and the golf balls are sailing directly into the side of the catering truck
  • During rehearsals, Brad Pitt and Edward Norton found out that they both hated the new Volkswagen Beetle with a passion, and for the scene where Tyler and The Narrator are hitting cars with baseball bats, Pitt and Norton insisted that one of the cars be a Beetle. However, Pitt is quoted on the DVD commentary as saying he has since had a change of heart about the new Beetle.
  • Three detectives in the film are named Detective Andrew, Detective Kevin, and Detective Walker. Andrew Kevin Walker was the writer of the David Fincher film Se7en (also starring Brad Pitt), and did some uncredited work on this movie’s script.
  • In Tyler Durden’s house there is a Movieline magazine cover featuring Drew Barrymore, a close friend of Edward Norton. The Blu-Ray edition of the film (released in November 2009) contains another “in-joke” reference to Barrymore; a fake menu for the film Never Been Kissed, which was released the same year as this film.
  • The typeface used for the titles and logo is named “Fight This”.
  • Some of fake names used by the narrator in the self-help groups are taken from Planet of the Apes (Cornelius), as well as classic roles played by Robert De Niro (such as Rupert from The King of Comedy and Travis from Taxi Driver).
  • Much confusion exists amongst fans about the Narrator’s name. Many believe it is Jack due to his use of the phrase “I am Jack’s…”, but others argue that he only uses the moniker Jack because that was the one he saw in “Annotated Reader”. Interestingly, in the press packages released for the movie, which came in the form of an Ikea-esque catalog, the character is referred to as Jack, as he is on the back of the DVD, and in the booklet accompanying the DVD, where the Chapter list is referred to as “Jack’s Chapters”. Also, the original screenplay by Jim Uhls refers to him as Jack. On the other hand, in the closed captions for the film, he is referred to as Rupert. Edward Norton reveals that he refers to the character as Jack on the audio commentary on the DVD and Blu-ray.
  • The original “pillow talk”-scene had Marla saying “I want to have your abortion”. When this was objected to by Fox 2000 Pictures President of Production Laura Ziskin, David Fincher said he would change it on the proviso that the new line couldn’t be cut. Ziskin agreed and Fincher wrote the replacement line, “I haven’t been fucked like that since grade school”. When Ziskin saw the new line, she was even more outraged and asked for the original line to be put back, but, as per their deal, Fincher refused.
  • The movie’s line “The first rule of Fight Club is you do not talk about Fight Club” was #27 of “The 100 Greatest Movie Lines” by Premiere in 2007.
  • The ‘soap slam on dish’ shot used in the trailer took 41 takes to get right. After the 40th take, director David Fincher realized that the soap was sliding out of frame and so he settled for a fake soap prop.
  • Starbucks pulled their name from the coffee shop destruction scene. They didn’t mind the director placing their product throughout the film, but did not want their name to be destroyed in that scene. Therefore, the gold globe crashes into a shop named Gratifico Coffee.
  • Edward Norton lost 17-20 pounds for this role after having to beef up tremendously for his role as a Neo-Nazi skinhead in American History X. Norton achieved this form by running, taking vitamins and just ignoring the on-set catering.
  • Courtney Love and Winona Ryder were both initially considered for the role of Marla Singer, but in the end, it came down to Helena Bonham Carter and Reese Witherspoon. Director David Fincher wanted Bonham-Carter, but the studio wanted a bigger name and chose to go with Witherspoon. In the end however, the decision was taken out of their hands when Witherspoon turned down the role as being “too dark”, and Bonham-Carter was cast.
  • David Fincher took 12 takes of the stuntman rolling down the stairs for the fight between The Narrator and Tyler at the end of the film. The take used in the movie is the very first one.
  • Author Chuck Palahniuk first came up with the idea for the novel after being beaten up on a camping trip when he complained to some nearby campers about the noise of their radio. When he returned to work, he was fascinated to find that nobody would mention or acknowledge his injuries, instead saying such commonplace things as “How was your weekend?” Palahniuk concluded that the reason people reacted this way was because if they asked him what had happened, a degree of personal interaction would be necessary, and his workmates simply didn’t care enough to connect with him on a personal level. It was his fascination with this societal ‘blocking’ which became the foundation for the novel.
  • After the copyright warning, there is another warning on the DVD. This warning is from Tyler Durden, and is only there for a second. “If you are reading this then this warning is for you. Every word you read of this is useless fine print is another second off your life. Don’t you have other things to do? Is your life so empty that you honestly can’t think of a better way to spend these moments? Or are you so impressed with authority that you give respect and credence to all who claim it? Do you read everything you’re supposed to read? Do you think everything you’re supposed to think? Buy what you’re told you should want? Get out of your apartment. Meet a member of the opposite sex. Stop the excessive shopping and masturbation. Quit your job. Start a fight. Prove you’re alive. If you don’t claim your humanity you will become a statistic. You have been warned… Tyler”
  • David Fincher claimed in an interview in UK film magazine Empire, that there is a Starbucks coffee cup visible in every shot in the movie (see also The Game) .
  • When a Fight Club member sprays the priest with a hose, the camera briefly shakes. This happens because the cameraman couldn’t keep himself from laughing.
  • Helena Bonham Carter wore platform shoes to help close up the disparity in height between her and Edward Norton and Brad Pitt.
  • The sex scene between Tyler (Brad Pitt) and Marla (Helena Bonham Carter) was shot using the same ‘bullet-time’ technique used in The Matrix; stills cameras were set up in a circle around the bed, and each one would take a single shot in sequence. These single frames were then edited together and enhanced with CG, as both Pitt and Bonham Carter were fully clothed in motion capture suits during the shoot.
  • To prepare for their roles, Edward Norton and Brad Pitt took basic lessons in boxing, taekwondo and grappling, and also studied hours of UFC programming. Additionally, they both took soapmaking classes from boutique company Auntie Godmother. Prior to principal photography, Pitt also visited a dentist to have his front tooth chipped.
  • Voted #4 in Total Film’s 100 Greatest Movies Of All Time list (November 2005).
  • The front of the product packaging for “Avery 8293 Matte White High-Visibility Labels for Inkjet Printers” shows a sample usage of the label on a shipping package. The address on this label is, “Tyler Durden 420 Paper St. Wilmington, DE”
  • Voted #10 on Empire magazine’s 500 Greatest Movies Of All Time (September 2008).
  • When the Narrator hits Tyler Durden in the ear, Edward Norton actually did hit Brad Pitt in the ear. He was originally going to fake hit him, but before the scene, David Fincher pulled Norton aside and told him to hit him in the ear. After Norton hit him in the scene, you can see him smiling and laughing while Pitt is in pain.
  • According to author Chuck Palahniuk, much of the specific content of the novel (such as splicing single frames of pornography into family films, attending support groups for the terminally ill, erasing video tapes etc) came from stories told him by friends, and from things his friends actually did. Whilst writing the novel, Palahniuk also interviewed numerous young white males in white-collar jobs, discovering that “the longing for fathers was a theme I heard a lot about. The resentment of lifestyle standards imposed by advertising was another.”
  • Fox 2000 Pictures executive Raymond Bongiovanni, who died shortly before the project was green-lit, first discovered the book whilst still in galleys. Prior to his death, Bongiovanni worked tirelessly to get the project off the ground, and in his obituary, it said that his last wish was that the novel be made into a film.
  • Director David Fincher shot 38 takes of the scene between Tyler Durden (Brad Pitt) and The Narrator (Edward Norton) in Lou’s Bar after The Narrator’s apartment has blown up. Each take was filmed with two cameras, and for every individual take, Fincher would give the actors a rough idea of what to do, and they would improvise most of the dialogue. The scene as it exists in the finished film is made up of segments from numerous different takes and much of the dialogue, especially Tyler’s dialogue, was completely ad-libbed on set.
  • Author Chuck Palahniuk told the producers from the very start that, although he fully supported the adaptation, he wasn’t interested in writing the screenplay. Jim Uhls was ultimately chosen as the writer. Cameron Crowe, Andrew Kevin Walker, director David Fincher and actors Brad Pitt and Edward Norton also did uncredited work on the screenplay.
  • Producer Ross Grayson Bell initially wanted Russell Crowe to play Tyler Durden, but he was overruled by fellow producer Art Linson, who felt Brad Pitt was the better choice. Bell has since said that he is glad Linson stepped in, as he can’t imagine anyone being as good in the role as Pitt proved to be.
  • The producers considered both Matt Damon and Sean Penn for the role of The Narrator, but director David Fincher wanted Edward Norton,
  • During the shooting of the sex scene, actors Brad Pitt and Helena Bonham Carter posed in 10 different positions from the Kama Sutra.
  • Prior to filming, Edward Norton and Helena Bonham Carter considered visiting real support groups for the terminally ill, but they decided against it, as due to the satiric nature of the film, they didn’t feel it was appropriate.
  • Brad Pitt and Helena Bonham Carter spent three days recording orgasmic sounds for their unseen sex scenes.
  • When Tyler (Brad Pitt) catches The Narrator (Edward Norton) listening at the door as he has sex with Marla (Helena Bonham Carter), he is wearing a rubber glove. This was Brad Pitt’s idea, and caused a great deal of controversy with President of Production at Fox 2000 Pictures, Laura Ziskin. She was horrified when she saw the scene and demanded that it be removed. However at a subsequent test screening, the appearance of the glove got the biggest laugh of the whole movie, prompting Ziskin to change her mind.
  • To ensure that Bob’s (Meat Loaf) breasts and love handles hung correctly, his fat suit was filled with birdseed, so that it would ‘spill’ over his pants and give the impression of sagging flesh. Altogether, the suit plus the seed weighed over one hundred pounds.
  • Make up artist Rob Bottin had to build two different fat suits for Meat Loaf – one with nipples, one without – because the filmmakers weren’t sure if 20th Century Fox would approve the suit with the prominent nipples.
  • The cave scene early in the film where The Narrator (Edward Norton) meets a penguin was inspired by the film The Secret Life of Walter Mitty, and was intended by director David Fincher as a ‘warning’ to the audience as to how surreal the film was going to become.
  • The breath in the cave scene is recycled Leonardo DiCaprio breath from Titanic, which was composited into the shot.
  • During the shooting of the film, Helena Bonham Carter insisted that her makeup artist (Julie Pearce) apply all of her eye makeup with her left hand, because Bonham-Carter felt that Marla was not a person who would be particularly skilled at (or concerned with) correctly applying makeup.
  • According to Helena Bonham Carter, she based her performance of Marla Singer on Judy Garland in the later stages of her life. To help her get into the mindset, director David Fincher would often call her Judy on-set.
  • The scene where The Narrator’s boss (Zach Grenier) finds the rules of Fight Club in the photocopier and The Narrator points out that whoever wrote it is obviously dangerous and might one day storm through the building shooting everyone, proved to be a highly controversial scene for the filmmakers. In early test screenings, the scene got huge laughs and scored extremely highly with audiences. However, these screenings happened before the Columbine massacre. In all screenings after Columbine, the scene evoked no laughter whatsoever and scored extremely poorly, with audiences commenting that they felt it was in bad taste. This prompted the studio to ask director David Fincher to cut the scene altogether. Fincher considered doing so, but because the scene leads into the pivotal Marla breast-cancer scene, he decided that it couldn’t be cut.
  • Filming lasted 138 days, with over 300 scenes shot on 200 locations and 72 sets constructed by production designer Alex McDowell.
  • After director David Fincher was finished editing the film, the studio executives were baffled by the piece, and unsure how to market it. Fincher had wanted a highly unique marketing campaign which would mirror the film’s theme of anti-commercialism, but already worried about the possible backlash against the film, the Fox executives refused to go ahead with Fincher’s idea (two of Fincher’s trailers can be found on the DVD in the ‘Internet Spots’ section). Instead, a campaign was launched which was built largely upon the presence of Brad Pitt in the film, as well as concentrating on the fighting (which plays a minor role in the actual film itself). The campaign was highly criticized as giving the impression that the film was basically just about men beating each other up, completely ignoring the comic and satiric elements of the narrative, and for marketing the film to the wrong audience. David Fincher was particularly incensed when he saw ads for the film during WWE and UFC programming.
  • In an infamous incident, the Friday that the film was released theatrically in the United States, Rosie O’Donnell appeared on her TV show and revealed that she had seen the film earlier in the week, and had been unable to sleep ever since. She then proceeded to give away the twist ending of the film and urged all of her viewers to avoid the movie at all costs. Edward Norton, Brad Pitt and David Fincher discuss this incident on their DVD commentary track, with Pitt calling ‘O’Donnell’s actions “unforgivable”.
  • Rupert Murdoch despised the project and clashed with then-studio head Bill Mechanic over putting it into production.
  • As noted during Author Chuck Palahniuk and Screenwriter Jim Uhls’ commentary, the seminary student/priest hosed by the mechanic is ultimately the winning combatant in the fight sequence immediately following the scene in which narrator beats himself up in front of his boss.
  • In the scene where The Narrator is sitting on a toilet, with his pants down while reading an Ikea catalog, Edward Norton is actually completely nude from the waist down. Norton talks about it on the DVD commentary to which David Fincher says “really?” Norton then says “Did you notice I never had to go to the bathroom that day?”
  • Brad Pitt says he didn’t want his parents to see the movie, but he couldn’t convince them not to watch. They changed their minds after watching the chemical burn scene.
  • The Narrator and Marla are both in attendance at a Sickle-Cell Disease support group. Every other member is of an African or Latin racial background. This disease primarily infects people of African, Mediterranean, Middle Eastern or South Asian background, hence a further statement on their need to “crash” these meetings.
  • Edward Kowalczyk: Member of the band Live plays the waiter who serves the Narrator and Marla with the line, “Sir, anything you want is free of charge, sir.”

Talking Points:

  • Called a Dramatic Comedy? would you agree with that?
  • Anyone Read The Book?
  • Why do some movies only find their audience after they have run in the theaters?
  • Worth watching over and over?
  • The old adage is that the Book is always better.. The Author of Fight Club says the film was an improvement on his Novel.
  • What Celebrity would you fight and what historical figure would you fight?

What We’ve Learned:

  • With a gun barrel between your teeth, you speak only in vowels.
  • Bob… Bob had bitch tits.
  • You can’t die from insomnia
  • support groups..cheaper than a movie and there’s free coffee
  • On a long enough time-line the survival rate for everyone drops to zero
  • one can make all kinds of explosives out of simple household items
  • You can swallow a pint of blood before you get sick.
  • Self improvement is masturbation, and self destruction
  • Sticking feathers up your butt does not make you a chicken

Trailer:

Recommendations:
Jeff: I want to ask the question, “How can you NOT have this movie in your DVD collection?” I still think it should be there because of the ultimate awesomeness of this movie, but I can understand why you wouldn’t. You should see it at least once.
Ray: I’m one of the people that fell victim to the poor marketing of this film and didn’t see it until it was released on DVD, It quickly became one of my favorite, and most watched DVD’s in my collection.
Steve: Never saw this in the theater, but once I saw it on DVD I really enjoyed it. However, unlike Se7en, watching it again has never had the same impact as seeing it the first time.

The Present: Rise Of The Planet of The Apes
Rotten Tomatoes: 83% Fresh Critics , 90% Audience

Director: Rupert Wyatt

Starring: James Franco, John Lithgow, Brian Cox, Tom Fenton, Andy Serkis

Trivia:

  • This is the second film in which Andy Serkis plays an ape, having previously portrayed 2005’s version of King Kong. He was also the motion capture actor for Gollum in Lord of the Rings, where he bites off Frodo’s finger. His ape character Caesar bites off the neighbor’s finger in this role, too.
  • Caesar uses a bundle of sticks to explain to Maurice how an ape alone is weak but apes together are strong. The bundle of sticks, or fasces, was a symbol of authority in ancient Rome, the origin of Caesar’s name. Caesar’s charisma is also reminiscent of Benito Mussolini, who adopted the fasces as the symbol of his Italian Fascist party.
  • The head of the research department Steven Jacobs (David Oyelowo) is named after Arthur P. Jacobs, producer of the original “Apes” franchise. His production company, APJAC, was often referred to as “ApeJAC”.
  • This is the first “Planet of the Apes” film in which neither Charlton Heston nor Roddy McDowall, the stars of the original Planet of the Apes, appear. Heston died on April 5, 2008 at the age of 84 whereas McDowall died on October 3, 1998 at the age of 70.
  • Shipped to theaters under the code name “Salad”.
  • Kathryn Bigelow, Robert Rodriguez, Tomas Alfredson, Allen Hughes and Albert Hughes, Pierre Morel, James McTeigue, Dennis Iliadis and Scott Charles Stewart all were considered by the studio, or passed on the project before director Rupert Wyatt signed on.

Talking Points:

  • Was this what you expected it to be?
  • Yummy, yummy – Tyler Labine
  • Did the monkey suffer the “Uncanny Valley” for anyone? !
  • Did you catch all the little homage’s to the original ?
  • Bright Eyes was the name given to Heston’s character in the original
  • Tom Fenton’s Character Dodge Landon is named after Heston’s two fellow astronauts
  • The Orangutan “Maurice” is named after actor Maurice Evans who played the Orangutan Dr Zaius
  • Charlton Heston appears on screen on the TV’s in the ape sanctuary
  • There is a news item on TV about the “Icarus” mission to mars.. supposedly referring to the crashed spacecraft piloted by Heston in the first film.
  • Tom Fenton says two of Heston’s most memorable lines from the first film “It’s a madhouse! A madhouse!” and “Take your stinking paws off me you damn dirty ape!”
  • Jamie Harris plays Rodney, the sympathetic keeper in the ape sanctuary. This is a nod to legendary ape actor ‘Roddy McDowell’.
  • In one scene, Caesar is shown handling a 3D puzzle of the Statue of Liberty, in reference to the the ending of the original Planet of the Apes.
  • Was the ending clear or too vague? Do you think many audiences understood it?

What We Learned:

  • Shooting your test subject is probably not the best way to impress your board of directors.
  • Never leave your keys in the mustang
  • Draco is still an asshole.

Trailer:

Recommendations:
Jeff: I thoroughly enjoyed this movie but I didn’t really think it was that great.
Ray: Wow.. this movie i think was the most surprising for me this summer.. i expected to hate it and walked away loving it.. even with Franco’s wooden acting and creepyish CGI
Steve: I didn’t realize Franco or Labine were in this! I liked the premise and knowing the origin, but didn’t find the acting particularly inspiring. It was all about the monkeys and the CG from afar stunk.

The Future: The Amazing Spiderman

Director: Marc Web

Starring: Andrew Garfield, Irrfan Khan, Denis Leary

Trivia:

  • In early January 2010, Sony announced that they canceled their idea of making “Spider-Man 4” with director Sam Raimi and actor Tobey Maguire, who started their work together on Spider-Man, and instead decided to re-boot the Spider-Man franchise with a new crew.
  • Before Andrew Garfield was announced for the lead part, Josh Hutcherson, Logan Lerman, Jamie Bell, Michael Angarano, Alden Ehrenreich, Aaron Johnson, and Anton Yelchin were also considered to play the lead role.
  • Michael Fassbender was approached by the studio to play the lead villain in this reboot. His Inglourious Basterds co-star Christoph Waltz was later rumored to be attached to the part.
  • Andrew Garfield was announced for the lead role in early July 2010.
  • Like Tobey Maguire (the original Spider-Man), Andrew Garfield had starred in a Terry Gilliam film before nabbing the role of Peter Parker/Spider-Man. Maguire appeared in Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas and Garfield appeared in The Imaginarium of Doctor Parnassus, both films also featuring Johnny Depp.
  • On selecting Andrew Garfield to play Peter Parker/Spider-Man, director Marc Webb said, “Though his name may be new to many, those who know this young actor’s work understand his extraordinary talents. He has a rare combination of intelligence, wit, and humanity. Mark my words, you will love Andrew Garfield as Peter Parker.”
  • Although numerous characters have been named for Spider-Man 4, Wizard has reported that it may come down to less-of-a-reboot for Sony and more along the lines of a “re-do” of the series by placing it firmly in the “Modern Age” (~1980-current) setting up Venom as the main villain. This was listed in two separate issues in 2009 and 2010.
  • Mia Wasikowska, Teresa Palmer, Dianna Agron, Imogen Poots, Emma Roberts, Lily Collins, Ophelia Lovibond, Mary Elizabeth Winstead, Georgina Haig, Hilary Duff and Dominique McElligott were considered for the role of Gwen Stacy, but were beaten out by Emma Stone.
  • This film marks the first time Dr. Curt Connors becomes The Lizard on film, played by Rhys Ifans. Although the character of Dr. Curt Connors appeared in the original Sam Raimi Spider-Man films, played by Dylan Baker, the character never became The Lizard in the films despite some strong hints.
  • This marks the second time that Martin Sheen and Cliff Robertson have shared a part. They previously played John F. Kennedy in Kennedy and PT 109, respectively.
  • Emma Stone (Gwen Stacy) and Sally Field (Aunt May) share the same birthday.
  • The first “Spider-Man” film to not feature Mary Jane Watson. Mary Jane was in the original three films played by Kirsten Dunst.
  • All four Spider-Man films have filmed on the Universal Studios Hollywood back lot. Ironically symbolic of the series itself, portions of the back lot burned down on June 1, 2008, meaning that first three used the old back lot while this reboot uses the new back lot.
  • John Slattery, Sam Elliott and R. Lee Ermey were considered for the role of J. Jonah Jameson before the character was cut from the movie. J.K. Simmons even expressed interest in reprising the role.

Talking Points:

  • Supposedly this is a “Darker” reboot, compared to the Nolan reboot of the Batman Franchise, are you getting that impression from the trailers?
  • Do superhero reboots really need to spend time on Origin Stories?
  • Anyone else find the FPS perspective in the trailer hokey?

Summary:

The film will portray Peter Parker as he is developing his super powers in high school.

Trailer:

Excitement:
Jeff: I’m totally ready for another Spidey movie. Not sure if they really had to reboot it, but interested in this take.
Ray: Much like Rise of the Planet of the Apes.. I’m not very excited by the trailer for this reboot… hopefully it will surprise me as much as Apes did.
Steve: Why do we need another Spiderman movie?

Coming Attractions:

The Past

The Present

The Future

MOV064: “Me, Me, Me, Me, Me. Me Too.”

The boys go back to the future to watch Neo battle Agent Smith in “The Matrix Reloaded”, then head back to the old west to see if those cow pokes can really defend theselves in Jon Favreau’s “Cowboys & Aliens”. They also review the trailer for “The Adventures of Tintin”, Steven Spielbergs first hack at a full-length animated movie. In movie news, there’s more about “Man of Steel”, Perry White is black?, a possible reboot for “Short Circuit”, and how about Snow White and the Seven Ninjas? Welcome to a brand new reel of COL Movies #64.

News:

The Past: The Matrix Reloaded
Rotten Tomatoes: 74% Fresh, 74% Audience

Directors: Andy Wachowski, Lana Wachowski

Starring: Keanu Reeves, Laurence Fishburne and Carrie-Anne Moss

Trivia:

  • Eva Mendes, Samantha Mumba, Brandy Norwood and Tatyana Ali were all rumored to be possible replacements for the character of Zee, after the initial choice Aaliyah died in a plane crash on 25 August 2001. Nona Gaye (daughter of late Motown legend Marvin Gaye) was eventually cast in the role.
  • There are twelve hoverships in Zion’s fleet, of which ten are shown or mentioned in the films and video game, Enter the Matrix, and whose names and captains are as follows: Osiris – Thadeus; Logos – Niobe; Nebuchadnezzar (Neb) – Morpheus; Mjolnir (Hammer) – Roland; Caduceus – Ballard; Gnosis – Ice; Vigilant – Soren; Icarus – Ajax; Brahma – Kali; Novalis – Tirant. Concept artwork reveals the names of the remaining two ships: the Ganesha and the Vishnu.
  • The Matrix Revolutions, Enter the Matrix, and this film were shot back-to-back.
  • It was reported that Keanu Reeves volunteered to give up a claim to a share of ticket sales amounting to around $38 million when producers feared that the film would never recoup the cost of the special effects.
  • GM donated 300 cars for use in the production of the movie. All 300 were wrecked by the end.
  • There were several injuries on the set: Carrie-Anne Moss broke her leg training for a wire stunt, Laurence Fishburne fractured an arm in another training incident and Hugo Weaving put out a disc in his neck while being pulled back on a wire.
  • The film’s highway chase sequence took almost three months to shoot (longer than many films’ entire shooting schedule).
  • Trinity uses a genuine hack to get into the Matrix. She uses Nmap version 2.54BETA25 (an actual port scanning tool) to find a vulnerable SSH server, and then proceeds to exploit it using the SSH1 CRC32 exploit from 2001.
  • The red chair Morpheus is sitting in when he is expounding his plan to access the source is the same red chair he was sitting in when he offered Neo the red and blue pills in The Matrix and when he explained to Neo what the Matrix was.
  • Only a few of the Smith clones were actually played by Hugo Weaving. Open casting calls for males with similar body shapes and structures took place, and Weaving’s head was superimposed on them later.
  • The tractor-trailer used in the freeway chase scene has Big Endian Eggs written on it’s side. This is a reference to Jonathan Swift’s Gulliver’s Travels: The Lilliputians, being very small, had correspondingly small political problems. The Big-Endian and Little-Endian parties debated over whether soft-boiled eggs should be opened at the big end or the little end, (Big-endian has also been adopted as computer terminology.)
  • According to Oakland city officials who worked with the filmmakers on the downtown Oakland shots, all red and blue colors had to be removed, so sidewalk curbs were painted over. Also, there could be no greenery or other plant life, so filming was done over the winter before tree leaves sprouted in the spring.
  • Lambert Wilson’s French accent as The Merovingian is intentionally exaggerated at the directors’ demand. Wilson speaks English very well and said it was his only deception towards the movie.
  • It took Carrie-Anne Moss six months just to get the Scorpion Kick in the beginning of scene correctly.
  • The fight sequence of Neo versus Smith and his clones (a.k.a. The Burly Brawl) took 27 days to shoot.
  • The Matrix Reloaded promotional material was in such high demand, that distributors were extremely worried about it being stolen. To combat this, standees and banners were sent out with the code names of “Caddyshack 2” and “The Replacements”. Several cinemas thought they had not received the materials due to these names, and as such, did not display them until the last minute.
  • The Matrix Reloaded is a highest grossing film in the series.
  • The Keymaker, while explaining how Neo will reach the Architect, says they will have to knock out 27 blocks of power and they will have exactly 314 seconds before the power begins to reroute. In the Bible, the 27th book of the New Testament (Revelation) chapter 3, verse 14 speaks of being a witness to the source of creation (which in the Matrix is the Architect).
  • Total Film magazine says this film contains “the worst line ever delivered in a mainstream Hollywood film.” The line of dialogue is: “Your life is the sum of a remainder of an unbalanced equation inherent to the programming of The Matrix.”

Talking Points:

  • Wire work and fight scenes weren’t as crisp – looked fake
  • What was the point of spending 5 minutes on the rave/dance/orgy scene?
  • Was anyone expecting to be flying inside a virtual vagina?
  • The Freeway scene
  • The whole assimilation angle was cool…especially that people who went in the matrix could be.

What We’ve Learned:

  • There’s no point in old men making points
  • You do not truly know someone until you fight them (fight club?)
  • You can never see past the choices we don’t understand
  • Some things never change……and some things do.
  • Swearing in french is like wiping your ass with silk
  • Choice is an illusion created between those with power and those without
  • Denial is the most predictable of all human emotions

Trailer:

Recommendations:
Jeff: Fighting, Euphoric Orgy In A Cave, Bullet time. Love it. Good movie? Not really.
Ray: This was the one before we stepped completely out of wonderland… fortunately the philosophical babble doesn’t get ultra heavy until the last 20 minutes of the film. Contains one of the best car chase scenes ever filmed
Steve: I like the concept of this one. Definitely takes the original to the next level. Exciting and full of twists and turns.

The Present: Cowboys & Aliens
Rotten Tomatoes: 44% Fresh, 60% Audience

Director: Jon Favreau

Starring: Daniel Craig, Harrison Ford and Olivia Wilde

Trivia:

  • Robert Downey Jr. was set to play Jake Lonergan, but dropped out due to scheduling conflicts.
  • Daniel Craig was chosen because of his distinct likeness to Yul Brynner, who starred in the cowboy epic The Magnificent Seven.
  • Daniel Craig recommended Eva Green for the role of Ella after working with her in Casino Royale. However, Eva turned the role down and Olivia Wilde was cast.
  • An early draft of the screenplay was written by Thomas Dean Donnelly and Joshua Oppenheimer.
  • This is DreamWorks’s third comic-book adaptation, after Road to Perdition and Over the Hedge.
  • The filmmakers cite Alien and Predator as an influence on the look of aliens in the film.
  • Screenwriters Roberto Orci and Alex Kurtzman described the film as “Unforgiven with aliens landing.”
  • Director Jon Favreau was constantly harassed with demands to shoot/convert the film in 3-D, but he held his ground, claiming Westerns should only be shot on film.
  • Steven Spielberg screened The Searchers and Close Encounters of the Third Kind for Roberto Orci and Jon Favreau so that they could get the atmosphere of the film.
  • Roberto Orci feels that the title, humorous as it may sound, will raise interest and put people off guard about the film, which will surprise them.
  • Harrison Ford wanted to go bareheaded in the film and not wear a hat (he is most famous for his performance in Steven Spielberg’s Indiana Jones films, where Jones wore a fedora), but since it was a Western film he was convinced to wear a hat. In American Graffiti , Harrison Ford was asked to cut his hair (to go bareheaded with a period haircut) for the film. He refused, stating that his role was too short, and offered to wear a hat instead.
  • Once again, with the involvement of Steven Spielberg, Harrison Ford is cast opposite a James Bond, in this case, Daniel Craig. The last time was when he worked opposite Sean Connery in Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade. Craig has also appeared in ‘The Adventures of Young Indiana Jones: Daredevils of the Desert (1999)’.
  • In the final scene of the movie, a “Southland Ice Company” ice wagon is shown. Southland Ice Company is the predecessor company to 7-11 stores.
  • As with most films distributed by Universal Pictures, there is a brief promo after the end credits for Universal Studios. However, the promo used at the end of this movie uses the decidedly 1960s era ad to promote the Universal Studios back lot tour in Hollywood, California. This promo was replaced in 1990 when Universal Studios opened a second location in Orlando, Florida and changed its logo.

Talking Points:

  • Did you buy the combination? True Grit meets Super 8?
  • “Use the Glaive” (Film Sack Krull reference)
  • Continuity error! When Jake was riding across the plain, no cuff…when he comes up the hill on close up, cuff!
  • Point of taking the people? To learn weaknesses?
  • Harrison Ford
  • Olivia Wilde’s character
  • What did you think of Jake?
  • The aliens

What We Learned:

  • Only 2 Kinds of men get shot, Criminals and Victims
  • God Doesn’t care who you were, just who you are.
  • Kissing makes you stop thinking.

Trailer:

Recommendations:
Jeff: I quite enjoyed this movie, but I could easily just watch this movie on DVD at home. See it in the theatres if you want, but okay to wait for the DVD.
Ray: I Liked it. I’m not sure why its getting all the bad word of mouth
Steve: I liked it. Wasn’t as exciting as I thought it would be, but I enjoyed it.

The Future: The Adventures of Tin Tin

Director: Steven Spielberg

Starring: Jamie Bell, Andy Serkis and Daniel Craig

Trivia:

  • Thomas Brodie-Sangster was originally set to play the titular character, but had to drop out due to scheduling conflicts. Jamie Bell, who had worked with Peter Jackson on King Kong, then came aboard to play Tintin.
  • The first animated film directed by Steven Spielberg.
  • In the early 1980s, Steven Spielberg hired E.T.: The Extra-Terrestrial writer Melissa Mathison to write a draft of the script. Her script featured a battle in Africa between Tintin and ivory poachers.
  • After Simon Pegg had completed How to Lose Friends & Alienate People, Steven Spielberg invited him to the film’s set and offered him the role of Thomson.
  • Originally, Steven Spielberg was going to do a live-action adaptation of Tintin, and called Peter Jackson to ask if his VFX company Weta Digital would work on the film, in particular creating a CGI Snowy. Jackson, as it turned out, was a longtime fan of Tintin, and convinced Spielberg that live action would not do justice to the comic books, and that motion capture was the best way of representing Hergé’s world of Tintin. However, Snowy would still be CGI.
  • Steven Spielberg has always shot his films traditionally, but since he was going to film what he saw was an animated film he didn’t mind shooting it digitally.
  • Claude Berri and Roman Polanski were interested in directing.
  • Screenwriter Steven Moffat claims he was “love-bombed” by Steven Spielberg into writing the script for this film, with Spielberg promising to shield him from studio interference with his writing.
  • Steven Moffat finished a draft of the script, but could not polish it because of the 2007-2008 Writers Guild of America strike, and afterwards becoming executive producer of Doctor Who. Steven Spielberg and Peter Jackson amiably allowed him to leave and fulfill his duty to the series (Jackson being a fan of the Doctor), and brought in Edgar Wright and Joe Cornish to rewrite Moffat’s draft.
  • This is Steven Spielberg’s first comic-book adaptation. He had earlier been considered to do Superman.
  • Steven Spielberg has been an avid fan of ‘The Adventures of Tintin’ comic books since 1981, when a review compared Raiders of the Lost Ark to Tintin. His secretary bought him French-language editions of each book, but Spielberg did not have to understand them: he immediately fell in love with its art. Meanwhile, ‘Tintin’ creator Hergé became a fan of Spielberg (reports say he “thought Spielberg was the only person who could ever do Tintin justice.”)
  • When the film was in development in 1984, Steven Spielberg wanted Jack Nicholson to play Captain Haddock.
  • This is Andy Serkis’s third collaboration with Peter Jackson, as well as his third motion-capture role (he had earlier played the creatures Gollum and King Kong in features directed by Jackson). Sometime after being cast, Serkis joked that he was worried Peter Jackson would cast him as Tintin’s dog Snowy.
  • To prepare for his role as Captain Haddock, Andy Serkis read the majority of the “Tintin” comics. He later commented that they had a surreal quality, similar to the Monty Python films.
  • ‘Danny deVito’ was considered for the role of Senor Oliveira de Figueira, but the character was cut from the script.
  • Daniel Craig (Red Rackham) had collaborated with Toby Jones in Infamous and Jamie Bell in Defiance, and appeared in the Steven Spielberg film Munich.
  • According to Steven Spielberg, when shooting he always keeps one eye closed when framing a shot, so that he can visualize the film in 2D (“the way viewers would”). But on this film he had both of his eyes open, as it was 3D and he wanted to treat the film like live-action.
  • During filming, Guillermo del Toro, Stephen Daldry and David Fincher paid a visit to the set.
  • Steven Spielberg’s cinematographer Janusz Kaminski was brought on to act as a lighting consultant for Weta, as Jackson wanted the film to look “film noir-ish, and very atmospheric.”
  • Steven Spielberg shot his portion of the film in 32 days (taking up March 2009). Peter Jackson was present for the first week of filming, and supervised the rest of the shoot via a specially made iChat videoconferencing program. Simon Pegg said Jackson’s voice would “be coming over the Tannoy like God.”
  • Steven Spielberg enjoyed working with the virtual camera so much, he did a lot of his own camera work in the movie.
  • Michael Kahn has collaborated with Steven Spielberg as an editor for over 30 years. He has always cut his movies on a Moviola and KEM when working with Spielberg. This will be his first movie that he will cut digitally with Spielberg using Avid (though he has cut movies digitally before, such as Twister).

Talking Points:

  • Who is this film for?

Summary:

Tintin and his friends discover directions to a sunken ship commanded by Capt. Haddock’s ancestor and go off on a treasure hunt.

Trailer:

Excitement:
Jeff: The film noir nostalgic aspect of this movie is making me want to see this.
Ray: Animated… Spielberg… Jackson… nuff said for me.
Steve: Looks interesting. I don’t know anything about Tin Tin, so I suppose I would need to in order to really grow interest.

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