MOV081: “Someday We’ll Find It”

In this 81st reel of COL Movies, the boys kick off the holiday season by bringing “The Muppet Christmas Carol” back. Conveniently, they then head to the theater to check out Jason Segal’s attempt to bring the beloved characters back into the limelight in “The Muppets”. Does it succeed? They then do a compare and contrast over the two upcoming Snow White tales, Julia Roberts’ “Mirror Mirror” and Charlize Theron’s “Snow White & The Hunstman”. Are fairy tales going to be the new “it” thing for 2012…sure looks like it! In news, we chat about Ridley Scott’s “Prometheus”, then discuss Cinemablend’s Top 25 Muppets list. It’s the 81st reel of COL Movies…”Someday We’ll Find It”

News:

The Past: The Muppet Christmas Carol
Rotten Tomatoes: 68% Fresh, 80% Audience

Director: Brian Henson

Starring: Michael Caine, The Great Gonzo, Rizzo The Rat, Kermit The Frog, Miss Piggy, Fozzie Bear, Dave Goelz, Steve Whitmire, Frank Oz, Steven Mackintosh, Jessica Fox

Trivia:

  • The first feature-length production in which Kermit’s voice was not provided by Jim Henson (who had recently died). Steve Whitmire took over the role.
  • This was the first major Muppet project after the death of creator Jim Henson. Henson had performed Kermit and the role was now being handed down to Steve Whitmire. According to Whitmire he was incredibly nervous about taking over such an iconic character. The night before he had to go record Kermit’s songs for the movie, he had a dream where he met Henson in a hotel lobby and told him how unsure he was. In the dream, Henson reassured Whitmire that the feeling would pass. After waking up, Whitmire was confident and able to do the part.
  • There is a store called “Micklewhite”. Michael Caine’s real name is Maurice Micklewhite.
  • Towards the end of the film, a tavern called “Statler & Waldorf” (named after the famous Muppet hecklers) can be spotted.
  • David Hemmings, Ron Moody, David Warner, and George Carlin were among the actors who
  • Michael Caine considers the role of Scrooge to be one of his most memorable (to him) roles.
  • SERIES TRADEMARK: At the conclusion of the song “One More Sleep”, Kermit is seen standing alone in the street and a shooting star can been seen streaking across the sky. In many (in not all) of the Muppet movies, a shooting star goes across the sky at some point when Kermit is on.
  • According to Brian Henson, the decision to use Gonzo and Rizzo to narrate the story was made because he wanted to incorporate the narration and prose of the Charles Dickens novel into the film.
  • In the film’s first scene, there is a shop sign that reads “Duncan & Kenworthy”. Producer Duncan Kenworthy was one of the creators of Jim Henson’s Fraggle Rock.
  • The movie is dedicated to the memory of Jim Henson and Richard Hunt. Henson, of course, was the creator of the Muppets. Hunt was one of the Muppet voice performers, perhaps best known as the voice of the character Scooter.
  • Jacob and Robert Marley surrounded by wailing cash boxes is a nod to Bob Marley & The Wailers.
  • Jacob and Robert Marley tell Scrooge to leave comedy to the bears. Statler and Waldorf, who play the Marley brothers, are known for constantly heckling Fozzie Bear for his poor comedy.

Talking Points:

  • Some of the muppets were CREEPY! Ghost of christmas past, kitty,
  • pacing…
  • Very classic telling of the take
  • Any fav Muppets?

What We’ve Learned:

  • December is harvest time for moneylenders.
  • Rat’s are versatile – bookkeepers, window squeege, fire bellows, chimney sweeps, Popsicles
  • Whispering = dramatic emphasis
  • Storytellers are omniscient
  • Rats don’t understand loneliness
  • Business.. its the America…er British Way
  • Never eat singing food
  • Life is made up of meetings and partings.

Trailer:

Recommendations:
Jeff: I’ve always loved this movie and many different versions of A Christmas Carol. Outside of this, I really liked the short Micky’s Christmas Carol which I’d also recommend to anyone. Both of these are Christmas Traditions to watch for me. I think this should be in everyone’s collection, something to watch with family on a cold winter evening.
Ray: It’s cute, It’s the muppets.. if your a muppets fan it should be in your collection. Best version of A Christmas Carol? not sure id go that far.. but it is good
Steve: I like it, but do find the pace a bit slow. Seems like a pretty honest telling of the story and Michael Caine is great! The ghost Muppets, especially future, are really cool. I need to show this movie to my nieces and nephew.

The Present: The Muppets
Rotten Tomatoes: 98% Fresh, 92% Audience

Director: James Bobin

Starring: Amy Adams, Jason Segel, Chris Cooper, Kermit The Frog, Miss Piggy, Fozzie Bear, The Great Gonzo, Dave Goelz, Steve Whitmire, Eric Jacobson

Trivia:

  • First theatrically-released Muppet film not to include Frank Oz
  • Of all the actors and actresses making cameos in this film, Alan Arkin is the only one to ever appear on The Muppet Show, back in 1979. Although Whoopi Goldberg appeared in an episode of the follow-up series Muppets Tonight in 1996 – a series set in a TV studio, not the classic Muppet Theater revisited in this film.
  • A picture of Jim Henson appears on a poster outside of the Muppet Theater and a picture of him with Kermit appears on the wall in Kermit’s old office.
  • A hidden Mickey Mouse appears in the fireworks at the end.
  • During the Muppet Telethon, the chickens clucked a rendition of Cee-Lo Green’s “Forget You’. At The 53rd Annual Grammy Awards, Green performed the same song wearing a feathery costume that paid homage to Sir Elton John’s 25 October 1977 appearance on Elton John.
  • In the montage where the Muppets are retrieved from their current jobs, Scooter is shown in a Google reception area. At the time of release, this is indeed an actual office; it is the reception of Google’s office in Zurich.
  • At one point in the movie, a kid asks Kermit if he’s a Ninja Turtle. The Muppets were Made by Jim Henson, who also made the Animatronics for the Live Action Ninja Turtle film and its sequel.
  • The “standard Fame and Fortune contract” referenced several times in the movie (that would cede control of Muppet Studios and the Muppet name after 30 years), would seem to be a reference to the contract first given to the Muppets by Lew Lord (Orson Welles) in the very first Muppet Movie in 1979. After an impassioned plea by Kermit, Lew asks his secretary to “Prepare the standard Rich and Famous contract for Kermit the Frog & Company”.
  • An appearance by Elmo of Sesame Street was planned for a scene where lawyers would have nixed an attempt by the Muppets to have him host their show. According to Jason Segel, the cameo itself was forbidden by lawyers. Sesame Street characters had previously made cameos in The Muppet Show, The Muppet Movie, The Great Muppet Caper, The Muppets Take Manhattan and various specials, but have not done so since the purchase of the Muppet characters by Disney in 2004.
  • This is the first time that John Krasinski has been in the same movie as his real-life wife, Emily Blunt, although they do not share any screen time together.
  • Emily Blunt reprises her role from The Devil Wears Prada as Miss Piggy’s receptionist.
  • At the end of the film as the camera tilts towards the sky showing the fireworks, you will see that three of the explosions are in the shape of Mickey Mouse’s iconic head. This is likely due to the Muppet franchise being owned by Disney. It’s also no coincidence that the Muppet Theatre was placed next to Jimmy Kimmel Live!’s theatre – a show on ABC, owned by Disney.
  • Featured some Muppets not seen since the 1980s, including the evil henchman dragon Muppet, ‘Uncle Deadly’.
  • First theatrical Muppet film in 12 years.
  • On its first 5 days it passed every Muppet film except the first in terms of box office gross.
  • In Kermit’s Office, there are many pictures of him with different special guest hosts like Steve Martin and Sandy Duncan. One of the pictures is of Kermit and Jim Henson who originally performed Kermit until his death in 1990.
  • Bret McKenzie taught Chris Cooper how to rap and use typical rapper mannerisms.
  • Rashida Jones plays an executive for the CDE television network. CDE is “ABC” (American Broadcasting Company) if you move each letter up 2 letters in the alphabet. ABC is owned by The Walt Disney Company.
  • Jim Parsons (Human Walter) is the only actor whose cameo appearance was never announced or rumored.

Talking Points:

  • Did it have the nostalgia of the originals?
  • References to other Muppet movies
  • Voices
  • Human singers – without Muppets
  • Any fav Muppets?

What We Learned:

  • Kermit is a Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle
  • Selena Gomez has no idea who the Muppets are…who’s she?
  • Kermit imagines the audience naked when he’s on stage.
  • Celebrities aren’t people
  • The Muppets aren’t bilingual
  • Neil Patrick Harris gets snotty when he doesn’t get to host
  • Ma Na Ma Na

Trailer:

Recommendations :
Jeff: I laughed, I cried, I felt like I was 6 years old again and enjoying every minute if it. I love the Muppets. Go, go see it. NOW.
Ray: I thought it was a nice re-introduction to the Muppets. I really liked seeing how the Muppets had moved on. The audience really seemed to enjoy this one. Everyone clapped at the end. I’d say if your gonna pick one family movie to see this Christmas this would be high on my list.
Steve: I am a huge fan of The Muppets and always have been. However, this one didn’t have me the whole way through. I really enjoyed when The Muppets were on screen, but there was too much human-only stuff that didn’t make i feel like it was a “Muppet” movie…just a vehicle for the actors.

The Future: Snow White & The Huntsman

Director: Rupert Sanders

Starring: Kristen Stewart, Chris Hemsworth and Charlize Theron

Summary:

In a twist to the fairy tale, the Huntsman ordered to take Snow White into the woods to be killed winds up becoming her protector and mentor in a quest to vanquish the Evil Queen.

Trivia:

  • Angelina Jolie and Winona Ryder were considered to play Ravenna, the Evil Queen.
  • Charlize Theron dropped out from J. Edgar to do this movie.
  • Johnny Depp, Tom Hardy and Michael Fassbender were considered to play Eric, The Huntsman.
  • For months, Viggo Mortensen was in talks to star as the Huntsman, but negotiations fell through and Mortensen dropped out.
  • After Viggo Mortensen passed on the movie, the role was offered to Hugh Jackman who also declined.
  • Dakota Fanning, Saoirse Ronan, Riley Keough, Alicia Vikander, Bella Heathcote, Selena Gomez, Emily Browning, Lily Collins and Felicity Jones were considered for the role of Snow White.
  • All seven dwarves are named after Roman Emperors: Caesar, Tiberius, Constantine, Claudius, Hadrian, Nero and Trajan.
  • During filming Kristen Stewart accidentally punched co-star Chris Hemsworth in the face giving him a black eye.
  • Production of the film was temporarily shut down in October 2011 after Kristen Stewart tore a ligament in her thumb during an attack scene with the dwarves. Stewart also suffered from a foot injury sustained on set.
  • Filming began in the United Kingdom in October 2011.
  • Lily Collins auditioned for the lead role but lost to Kristen Stewart. She was later cast in the other Snow White movie, Mirror Mirror.

The Future: Mirror Mirror

Director: Tarsem Singh

Starring: Lily Collins, Julia Roberts and Armie Hammer

Summary:

An evil queen steals control of a kingdom and an exiled princess enlists the help of seven resourceful rebels to win back her birthright..

Trivia:

  • Saoirse Ronan was considered for the role of Snow White, but the age difference between her and Armie Hammer was too big.
  • Alex Pettyfer, James Holzier, and James McAvoy were all considered for the part of Prince Andrew Alcott.
  • The original script included a scene between a shirtless Prince (Armie Hammer) and the Queen (Julia Roberts) in which the Queen remarks how smooth his chest is. This line had to be eliminated when Hammer refused to shave the hair off his chest for the scene.

Talking Points:

  • Antz V A Bugs Life, and Deep Impact V Amaggeddon

Trailers:

Excitement:
Jeff: Very different takes on the Snow White story. I actually kinda want to see both of them. Snow White for the action/drama, and Mirror Mirror for the comedy.
Ray: The Huntsman is the one pulling me to the theater, but I prefer a dark fantasy over a comedy.. Mirror Mirror looks a little too Shrekish to me.
Steve: The Huntsman seems more in my personal wheelhouse, whereas Mirror Mirror looks as though it is going to be a bit schitzo – fighting the family friendly Disney-fied look with a sarcastic comedy edge. For me, Nathan Lane and Julia Roberts would be the draw for Mirror Mirror, whereas the dark edge of Huntsman and Chris Hemsworth would be the draws for that one. My money’s on Huntsman – especially since it’s got Twilight power.

Coming Attractions

The Past

The Present

The Future

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MOV079: “I don’t know, he’s on everybody else’s, why shouldn’t he be on mine?”

In the 79th reel of COL Movies, the boys go back in time to solve the mystery of 1985’s “Clue”. After the FBI breaks that case, they head to the theater to watch Leonardo DiCaprio play the originator of the FBI in “J. Edgar” (or Jedgar). Since Leo looked so much like a Muppet with all of that make-up on, they decide to review the trailer for the revival of “The Muppets”. In news, they talk about the possibility of the Dr. Who movie, a live-action/CGI Lego movie, and Eddie’s out and Billy’s in for the Oscars. It’s the 79th reel of COL Movies…”I don’t know, he’s on everybody else’s, why shouldn’t he be on mine?”

News:

The Past:Clue (1985)
Rotten Tomatoes: 70% Fresh, 85% Audience

Director: Jonathan Lynn

Starring: Tim Curry, Madelin Kahn, Christopher Lloyd, Martin Mull

Trivia:

  • Prof. Plum indicates at dinner that he works for the World Health Organization, part of the United Nations Organization. This means he works for UNO WHO.
  • Three endings were shot, and a different one shown at each theater. All three are included on video. The DVD, however, aside from all three endings, also offers the option to play the movie with one randomly selected ending. In some cities, the newspaper print ads indicated which version (“Ending A”, “Ending B” or “Ending C”) was being shown at each theater.
  • The parquet floor in the Hall resembles the ‘Clue’ game board.
  • There are few departures from the original board game; in the movie the hall has been transformed into part of the playing board and has been replaced by the front doors. This was probably done so that the rooms didn’t have to stand alone.
  • Eileen Brennan also starred in the film adaptation of Murder by Death, Neil Simon’s parody of murder mysteries.
  • Differences in two weapons in the film include that the revolver in the board game is most commonly a pepperbox revolver (an early 1800s revolver with the six bullet chambers jutting out from the main gun parts). However, it is changed to a regular .38 caliber revolver to possibly keep up with the modern time period the film is set in. The lead pipe in the game was also bent at an angle, to emphasize the fact that it was (possibly) used in Mr. Boddy’s murder; the film shows it completely straight.
  • The first movie based on a board game.
  • in the movie, “Hill House”, was named after the producer of the movie, Debra Hill.
  • Madeline Kahn ad-libbed the short monologue about her hatred for Yvette the French maid.
  • The screams heard when the characters rush to the maid in the billiard room are not from the actress playing the maid. They are from the actress playing Miss Scarlett, from the scenes where the dead body of the cook and the live body of Wadsworth fall out of the meat locker.
  • There is an inscription over the fireplace which reads “Nouveau Riche Oblige”.
  • The color of each characters car is the same color as their playing piece in the game.
  • The term ‘Schtupping’ is actually a crude German/Yiddish word for the sex act; this is why Madeline Kahn’s character in Blazing Saddles is named “Lilly Von Schtupp” for rather obvious reasons.
  • The actor playing Mr. Boddy is the front man of the punk rock band Fear, and was chosen because his name is Lee Ving – Mr. Boddy will be ‘LeaVing’ soon.
  • Kellye Nakahara’s movie debut.
  • The line “And monkey’s brains, although popular in Cantonese cuisine, are not often to be found in Washington DC” appears in two of the filmed endings.
  • During the scene in the kitchen at the beginning of the movie where Wadsworth is checking on dinner, you can see the Senator McCarthy hearings playing on the television. Thus another of the movie’s references to the communist scare during the 50’s.
  • The murder scenes from the movie are an adaptation of Agatha Christie’s Ten Little Indians.
  • In the theatrical trailer, John Morris’ score is not used. In it’s place is Elmer Bernstein’s score from Airplane!.
  • The song Yvette is dancing to in the beginning of the film, “Shake, Rattle, and Roll” is the version recorded by Bill Haley & The Comets, only it is sped up with the pitch increased. This trick was also used in Airplane! in which the BeeGees song “Stayin’ Alive” is also played in a sped up version.
  • In the board game, only Professor Plum and Colonel Mustard any identifiable backgrounds given their titles. All of the other characters’ backgrounds are left ambiguous. However, on some editions of the board game, the covers show Mrs. White dressed as a maid.
  • In an interview conducted in November 2009, Jonathan Lynn stated that he had cast the film himself. He said that whilst actors were recommended to him via the casting department, it was his final decision on whom he would cast.His original choice for Wadsworth was British actor Leonard Rossiter, most famous for the role of Rigsby in Rising Damp, but he sadly passed away in 1984 just prior to pre-production, he was followed by Rowan Atkinson who was well known in England for his roles in Not the Nine O’Clock News and The Black Adder, but the studio felt he was to unknown to American audiences to be the leading actor in an American Production. Ironically Atkinson would go on to huge success with his character Mr. Bean in America some years later.Jonathan Lynn had known Tim Curry since they were teenagers, and personally asked him to be in the film.
  • The phone in the lounge lists the number as YL-7091. The corresponding number prefix (95) was reserved for radio station use in the 1950s.
  • John Cleese was considered for the role of Wadsworth.
  • According to an interview with writer Jonathan Lynn, after a screening on the 25th Anniversary of the film’s release, Carrie Fisher was originally to have been cast as Miss Scarlett, until she ended up in rehab four days before filming started. Lesley Ann Warren was a last-minute substitute.
  • Mrs. Peacock’s car is a Packard.
  • One of the photos burnt is a photo of Colonel Mustard and a soldier, both in US Army dress uniform. The soldier is likely his driver and the Motorist.
  • The film takes place in “New England,” as revealed in the opening scenes. Soon after, Miss Scarlet is picked up by Professor Plum and explains that she is on her way to Hill House, which is “off Route 41.” In real-life New England, there is a Route 41 that spans the northwestern section of Connecticut, continuing through the southwestern section of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. So, Hill House, story-wise, is located in either of these two New England states.
  • In the opening scene when Wadsworth checks on Mrs. Ho the cook, the live-televised Army-McCarthy hearings are on the kitchen’s television. One phrase spoken by Senator Joseph R. McCarthy that can be heard clearly as Wadsworth departs, is “…professors and teachers, who are getting their orders from Moscow…” This Senate hearing is also the same one in which the famous quote of ‘…Have you no sense of decency, sir, at long last? Have you left no sense of decency?’ is spoken by Head Counsel for the Army Joseph Welch. With the coverage of the hearings taking place on live television, the events of the movie take place on Wednesday June 09, 1954.
  • After the production concluded, the mansion set was bought by the producers of Dynasty, who used it as The Carlton Hotel.
  • While all the other rooms in Hill House were constructed on a sound stage, the room used for the Ballroom was actually located within the house used for the establishing matte shot, 160 S. San Rafael Avenue, Pasadena.
  • The painting behind Mr. Boddy’s chair in the dining room depicts Mr. Boddy in a butler’s uniform, foreshadowing the revelation in Ending C that Mr. Boddy was the real butler.
  • Originally, there were endings in which each character killed off everyone once, and then the ending where they all did it. However, the final cut would have made the movie over two and a half hours, and director Lynn thought it to be excessive, hence the three endings that are in the final cut.
  • When walking through the hall to the library, Col. Mustard pauses to look up at the chandelier that later in the film, almost kills him.
  • There was actually a fourth ending scripted and shot, in which Wadsworth committed all the murders out of a twisted need for perfection in his life. He reveals that he poisoned everyone with a slow-acting toxin in their drinks. It ended with Wadsworth being killed by dogs as he attempted to escape by car from the house. The rather grim nature of the ending is probably why it was never released. It was never shown because the film makers thought the ending would have been too obvious – it only survives in the novelization and the storybook, which features but a single photo from that ending (the Chief punching Wadsworth in the stomach).
  • The line, “Communism was just a red herring,” is said in all three endings (twice by Wadsworth and once by Miss Scarlet), and it is a pun. Particularly after World War II, the Russian communists were frequently called “Reds”, for example in the anti-communist slogan, “Better dead than Red.”
  • When Wadsworth cuts the power to the house during his solving of the mystery, it represents the point of divergence of the three endings.
  • We learn that Mr. Green is being blackmailed because he is a homosexual working for the government. Later on, J. Edgar Hoover calls the house. In “Ending C” where everyone is guilty, we learn that Mr. Green is really an FBI agent sent in to infiltrate the blackmailer. In a couple of ironic twists, J. Edgar Hoover has long been suspected of being a homosexual and in the 1950’s, Hoover started a case called “Operation: Babydoll” in which he gathered intelligence on possible homosexuals working in the federal government.
  • In Ending A, there is a discussion between Wadsworth, who believes the Revolver had been fired six times (he says “1 + 2 + 2 + 1”) and is empty, and Miss Scarlett who says there had been only five shots (she argues “1 + 2 + 1 + 1”). Wadsworth is proved wrong, and in the last line of Ending A he reviews his calculation: “1 plus 2 … plus 1 …” The camera cuts away as he continues speaking, so it is often unnoticed that the sum he actually utters is neither six or five, but seven.

Talking Points:

  • Didn’t do well in the box office – but received a cult following
  • Favorite ending(s)
  • The point of distributing the movie with three different endings.

What We’ve Learned:

  • Cars Get Frightened?
  • The double negative leads to proof positive
  • J Edgar Hoover is on every one’s phone.
  • Monkey Brains are a Cantonese delicacy

Trailer:

Recommendations:
Jeff: One of my favorite movies of all time, well put together, well acted and cleverly written. It hits all my buttons. Everyone should see it at least once.
Ray: Tim Curry shines in this.. but it’s hard not to shine when the rest of the movie is so dull. The Cast looks incredible on paper.. but fails in execution. Ill take “The Private Eyes” over this one any day.
Steve: I’ve always enjoyed this movie. The variety of characters are fun and I really enjoy Tim Curry’s performance. It’s campy fun.

Intermission:

The Present: J Edgar
Rotten Tomatoes: 41% Rotten, 66% Audience

Director: Clint Eastwood

Starring: Leonardo DiCaprio, Armie Hammer and Naomi Watts

Trivia:

  • Joaquin Phoenix was rumored to play Clyde Tolson, but the rumors were denied.
  • Charlize Theron was originally cast as Helen Gandy, but dropped out to do Snow White and the Huntsman. Amy Adams was then considered, but Naomi Watts was ultimately cast.
  • Armie Hammer, who plays Clyde Tolson, is the great-grandson of Occidental Petroleum tycoon Armand Hammer. In his biography of Hammer (the tycoon, not the actor) called “Dossier: The Secret History of Armand Hammer,” author Edward Jay Epstein reported that the tycoon had a multi-decade history of being scrutinized and suspected of Soviet ties by J. Edgar Hoover.
  • Shipped to theaters under the code name “Lawman”.

Talking Points:

  • Relevance to today’s political / social climate
  • Theme of secrets?
  • GLBT Theme & brief mention of cross-dressing – did you expect it?
  • audience response to kiss

What We Learned:

  • Fame if unchecked, leads to villainy
  • What determines a man’s legacy is often never seen
  • The Ladies appreciate facial hair
  • Senator McCarthy was an opportunist not a patriot
  • Sometimes you need to bend the rules a little to keep your country safe.
  • Admiration can’t fill the spot love goes, or warm your bed
  • Solid weight looks good on a man

Trailer:

Recommendations :
Jeff: This movie surprised me in how much I ended up enjoying it. Still a little iffy on Di Caprio’s vocal performance but enjoyed it overall. Also surprised on all the homosexual references and undertones. I think it’s a worth see but pretty sure will be put in the GLBT category for subject.
Ray:I found the pacing extremely slow, and the structure a little confusing. The Makeup was a huge distraction for me as well. I find the message of this movie is still relevant today… just replace the word “Radical” with “Terrorist” but ultimately I was disappointed with this because I felt if focused too much on his actions and not his motivations.
Steve: The first 45 mins to an hour were utterly boring to me. After waking up, I enjoyed the rest of it. I like biopics to a point, but would have been much more interested in seeing more about the FBI versus just all the “secrets” about him and those he held about others.

The Future: The Muppets

Director: James Bobin

Starring: Amy Adams, Jason Segel, Chris Cooper

Summary:

When 3 Muppet fans learn that Tex Richman wants to drill under the muppet theater for oil Gary, Mary and Walter set out to find the Muppet’s who have been split up for years

Trivia:

  • First theatrically-released Muppet film not to include Frank Oz or Jerry Nelson as Muppeteers.
  • Of all the actors and actresses making cameos in this film, ‘Liza Minnelli’ and Alan Arkin are the only ones to ever appear on The Muppet Show, back in 1979. Although Whoopi Goldberg appeared in an episode of the follow-up series Muppets Tonight in 1996 – a series set in a TV studio, not the classic Muppet Theater revisited in this film.
  • When not being used the Muppets got placed into a large bed so that they are simply “sleeping”. One day a group of young schoolchildren visited the set and, when the characters didn’t respond to them, they immediately began sobbing and were certain that the characters were dead.

Talking Points:

  • Will being a Disney franchise possibly change the “feel”?

Trailer #1:

Trailer #2:

Excitement:
Jeff: THE MUPPETS!!!! YEY!!!! *giggles like a 5 yo*
Ray: I wouldn’t be running out to the theater to see this if it wasn’t for this show.. but it makes me happy that the Muppet’s are still going. I hope the movie is successful if only so that they can continue and be introduced to new generations.
Steve: I’m glad that they are coming back, for sure. I have always loved the movies, although I can’t say that I’d run out to see them in the theater. Muppets have always been a fun at-home experience for me. I am interested in seeing how they update them for today’s audience, though.

Coming Attractions

The Past:

The Present:

The Future:

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MOV073: “We Love Premarital Sex!”

In this 73rd episode of COL Movies, the boys head back in time – well, technically into the future, yet back in time – to kick off Horror month and to revive Mr. Vorhees in “Jason X”. After some gore and premarital sex, they head to the theater to review the Brad Pitt film “Moneyball”. And no, it’s not a porno…get your mind out of the gutter. There are balls, but not those kind… Anyway, they close out by reviewing the trailer for “J. Edgar” or Jedgar, where Clint Eastwood will be directing Leo DiCaprio in a bio-pic about a cross-dressing Gman (or so the legend goes). In news, we introduce the new segments called “The Cutting Room Floor” or “Cuts” for short, Zack Snyder’s folks talk about “Army of the Dead”, Is Disney setting the standard for 3D, and the unfortunate loss of Steve Jobs. We also take an intermission to talk about the best scary movies of all times. It’s COL Movies…where “we love premarital sex!”

News:

The Past: Jason X

Rotten Tomatoes: 21% Rotten, 37% Audience

Director: James Isaac

Starring: Kane Hodder, Lexa Doig and Lisa Ryder

Trivia:

  • The space debris floating in space has “Cunningham Reality” written on the side. This is a reference to the name of producer Noel Cunningham, the son of executive producer and maker of the original Friday the 13th, Sean S. Cunningham.
  • Screenwriter Todd Farmer based much of the film on Alien, even naming one of the characters (whom he also played) Dallas, after Tom Skerritt’s character in the Ridley Scott film.
  • Several of the characters in the film are named after screenwriter Todd Farmer’s online friends in the PC game EverQuest.
  • It had four different U.S. release dates before it was finally released.
  • The name “Tiamat” comes from Babylonian mythology. She is a dragon/goddess of the sea, who was slain by the god Marduk who then formed the land from her carcass.
  • Brodski mentioned a gun while the soldiers were suiting up called the “BFG”. This sci-fi gun is well known to players of the PC games Doom and Quake II as the most powerful weapon. “BFG” is an acronym for “Bio Force Gun” or “Big Fucking Gun”, as some called it.
  • Jason Voorhees’ eyes never blink when they are shown.
  • The music played during Jason’s first look at the virtual reality Camp Crystal Lake is the same musical score as the one in Friday the 13th Part 2.
  • The name of the primary ship in the film is the “Grendel” which is the name of a monster in the Old English poem “Beowulf”. Grendel was a direct descendant of Cain from the Book of Genesis, a monster described as half-troll, half-ogre. Like Jason, Grendel rose from a lake in search of victims and seemingly could not be killed. Also, in their fight, Beowulf rips Grendel’s arm off, and in the movie, when Kay-Em shoots up Jason, the first thing he loses is his arm.
  • In the scene where Dallas is smashed against the wall by Jason, the stuntman who did this actually broke his nose.
  • When Stony opens the door and gets stabbed and his blood sprays in Kinsa’s face, she screams. According to the audio commentary, the effects guys weren’t supposed to spray the blood into her face. She was screaming not because she just saw her boyfriend die, but because the fake blood was burning her eyes
  • The “virtual ’80s” scene was originally meant to be much more detailed, including a number of topless women playing volleyball. One idea even included the appearance of Pamela Voorhees, Jason’s mother, and even went so far as to have Jason attack her, showing the extent of just how evil he had become. The latter idea was dropped.
  • The “sleeping bag death” scene was first done in Friday the 13th Part VII: The New Blood, and was actually ad-libbed by Kane Hodder in that film out of frustration at re-shooting the same scene over and over.
  • The character Janessa was originally named Jessica, after producer Sean Cunningham’s sister.
  • The first film in the Friday the 13th series to rely on digital effects for death and gore shots.
  • Jason murders 28 people, more than any of the other Friday the 13th movies.
  • The film only suffered a couple seconds of cuts/alterations to earn an “R” rating, making it the least censored entry in the entire ‘Friday the 13th’ series.
  • The character Adrienne is a reference to Adrienne King, who played Alice Hardy in Friday the 13th and Friday the 13th Part 2.
  • Jason X is the first Friday the 13th film to be rated ’15’ in the UK. Although Friday the 13th parts 2,3 & 6 were originally rated ’18’ they were altered to ’15’, part 6 in 2002 and parts 2 & 3 in 2008.
  • Betsy Palmer was doing a play in Toronto at the time Jason X was filming. According to Palmer, one of the producers contacted her about possibly reprising her role as Pamela Voorhees. They did not come to an agreement, and the character was not included in the film.
  • In Andromeda, Lexa Doig played the avatar of the ships artificial intelligence and Lisa Ryder played a crew member. In this movie, Ryder is an AI construct and Doig joins the crew.

Talking Points:

  • Why didn’t they try ________
  • The comedy of it –
  • Jeff – make sure you watch the trailer! 🙂
  • Love how Jason got top billing in the movie!

What We’ve Learned:

  • Never say “Every thing’s Under Control” when your dealing with Jason Voorhees
  • In the end it always comes down to money
  • Mess with an engineer and you end up with a waste hose in your bunk
  • Liquid nitrogen + your face = a bad day
  • Never let a guy with a machete thaw.
  • Never kill an indestructible killer near the medical bay with nanites
  • Always make sure your android has a complete library of bad ass kung fu movies uploaded in its head.
  • Make sure your space ship is always well lit.

Trailer:

Recommendations:
Jeff: A Terrible, terrible movie in a very good way. If you like Sci Fi bad movies and FT13, this is for you.
Ray: This is probably my favorite FT13 movie next to the first 2… this is a movie that totally doesnt take it self seriously..but like with all FT13 movies.. your gonna love it ..or hate it.
Steve: If you’re a pure fan of FT13…skip it. But it’s still gory fun.

Intermission: Scary Movies

The Present: Moneyball

Rotten Tomatoes: 95% Fresh, 91% Audience

Director: Bennett Miller

Starring: Brad Pitt, Jonah Hill, Philip Seymore Hoffman

Trivia:

  • When Steven Soderbergh was still supposed to direct, he cast Brad Pitt and Demetri Martin in the lead roles and had already shot interview scenes with baseball players Lenny Dykstra, Mookie Wilson and Darryl Strawberry to be included in the film.
  • During pre-production, director of photography Adam Kimmel was arrested in Connecticut on sexual assault and weapons and explosives possession charges. He was replaced by Wally Pfister.
  • Production of the movie was set to begin on June 22, 2009, but it was surprisingly dropped by Columbia Pictures. Studio co-chairman Amy Pascal axed the movie after objecting to changes which original director Steven Soderbergh made to Steven Zaillian’s script.
  • The “Peter Brand” character was originally going to be named Paul DePodesta, who was Billy Beane’s assistant at the time (he later served as Dodgers’ GM and was employed by the Mets at the time of the film’s release). Demetri Martin was originally cast for this role. However, DePodesta, who visited the set, objected to his portrayal as a pure stats nerd, and so the character name was changed. By the time this was done, Jonah Hill had been cast in the role.
  • In the scene with Billy and the scouts where he mentions Scott Hatteburg, the board behind his head reads “Pratt, C.” on a yellow tab. Hatteburg was played by Chris Pratt.
  • Bobby Kotick, President, CEO and a director of Activision Blizzard portrays Stephen Schott, the owner of the Oakland Athletics in the film.
  • At one point, we hear that Miguel Tejada has struck out to end a game. In the original book, Tejada’s free swinging ways and relatively high strikeout rate was something of a point of contention, with the Dominican shortstop telling Beane and other Athletics’ members that “You can’t walk your way off the island”.
  • Several of the actors playing the ballplayers have baseball experience. Casey Bond spent time in the Giants’ organization, Stephen Bishop played for three years during the ’90s (including one season where he played with David Justice, who he portrays in the film), Royce Clayton played 17 years in MLB and Derrin Ebert played five games for the Braves in 1999.
  • Of all the Oakland players from the season represented in the movie (2002), only one played for Oakland in the season that the movie premiered (2011): Mark Ellis (and he was traded away in the middle of the season).
  • Despite suggestions in the movie that Hatteberg was a bad-fielding first baseman, he ended the year with a fielding percentage (.994) higher than the league average for his position (.993).

Talking Points:

  • Billy Bean vs Billy Beane
  • Performances

What We Learned:

  • Baseball thinking is medieval
  • Anything worth doing is incredibly hard
  • When you get the answer you want, just hang up on them
  • First guy through the wall gets bloody
  • An ugly girlfriend means no confidence

Trailer:

Recommendations:
Jeff: Strangely enough this movie I actually liked this movie. it kept my attention and kept moving. Never got much of an attachment to any of the character but I liked it. It’s not for everyone though. Feel free to wait on this one.
Ray: Not a movie I could recommend or will plan on ever seeing again. I found the characters douchy, was bored to tears by the story, and annoyed by the blatant attempts at emotional manipulation.. definitely gets a skip in my book.
Steve: I was surprised that I liked it so much. I actually enjoyed it – perhaps because I play ball and could get a lot of the terms and understand it from the team dynamic standpoint. Have to say I’d written off Jonah Hill, but respected the acting job he did in this movie.

The Future: J Edgar

Director: Clint Eastwood

Starring: Leonardo DiCarprio, Armie Hammer, Naomi Watts

Summary:

As the face of law enforcement in America for almost 50 years, J. Edgar Hoover was feared and admired, reviled and revered. But behind closed doors, he held secrets that would have destroyed his image, his career and his life.

Trivia:

  • Joaquin Phoenix was rumored to play Clyde Tolson, but the rumors were denied.
  • Charlize Theron was originally cast as Helen Gandy, but dropped out to do Snow White and the Huntsman. Amy Adams was then considered, but Naomi Watts was ultimately cast.

Talking Points:

  • Anyone know how long this movie is supposed to be?
  • Sexuality is a already a controversy (AfterElton)

Trailer:

Excitement:
Jeff: DiCaprio’s vocal performance is kinda distracting. Plus I don’t feel it’s very clear what to expect. This trailer has failed to get my excitement.
Ray: Definitely a movie I’m interested in.. not thrilled about DiCaprio, but he’s been surprising me lately.
Steve: Looks interesting, but it’s not my kind of film. Only really interested in seeing what they have to say about his personal life.

Coming Attractions:

The Past

The Present

The Future

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MOV022: “Well, Ray, you appear to be dead.”

Adam Sandler in Drag! A Yellow Submarine remake? You won’t have to kneel before Zod. The Frighteners, The Social Network, and Jeff wants to kill himself (figuratively, not literally) for 127 Hours.

News:

The Past: The Frighteners

Director: Peter Jackson

Starring: Michael J. Fox, Jake Busey, Jeffery Combs, Dee Wallace, Trini Alvarado

Trivia:

  • R. Lee Ermey (Sgt. Hiles) spoofs his own role as drill sergeant in Full Metal Jacket (1987).
  • Was originally planned as a “Tales from the Crypt” (1989) feature, but producer Robert Zemeckis liked the script so much, he decided it should stand on its own and not be part of a series.
  • Michael J. Fox repeatedly blew his lines by calling John Astin’s character “Doc”

Talking Points:

  • This Movie didn’t do so hot at the Box Office
  • M.J.F’s last feature film
  • Has the CG Held up?
  • Full length behind the scenes film shot along-side the movie

What We’ve Learned:

  • Ghost’s shouldn’t have sex…ever…its creepy
  • Sometimes, people are scarier even than ghosts
  • When you die, make sure you’re not wearing something trendy, otherwise you’ll be in it forever.

Trailer:

Recommendations:
Jeff: Excellent movie, Worth a rent to determine if you want to buy it. I recommend the director’s cut Although not sure what was added.
Ray: Its an interesting movie, definitely worth a rent.
Steve: Enjoyable! I’d forgotten about this movie.

The Present: The Social Network

Director: David Fincher

Starring: Jesse Eisenberg, Rooney Mara, Justin Timberlake, Armie Hammer, Andrew Garfield

Trivia:

  • Jesse Eisenberg’s cousin actually works for Facebook, apparently near the real Mark Zuckerberg.
  • The opening breakup scene with Jesse Eisenberg and Rooney Mara ran eight script pages and took 99 takes.
  • The Winklevoss twins were both played by actor Armie Hammer. However, Ralph Lauren model Josh Pence played one of them strictly from the neck down. His face was digitally replaced with Hammer’s to make them appear identical, as the two men are unrelated and look nothing alike. The two spent 10 months in twin boot camp to match one another’s subtle movements and rapport
  • Justin Timberlake was the only actor who met his real-life character (Sean Parker) before the founding of Facebook and this film. Armie Hammer and Josh Pence met their real-life characters, the Winklevoss twins after filming. The twins enjoyed Hammer and Pence’s performance so much they attended to a couple screenings of the film.

Talking Points:

  • Trent Reznor Soundtrack
  • Do you think Zuckerberg did it for the girl?
  • Do you think he was purposely portrayed as a douche?
  • Gag order? What gag order?

What We Learned:

  • Don’t Drink and Blog
  • Sometimes you just have to take the bitter with the better
  • Girls dig cats that look like Hitler
  • As the Countess says, “Money can’t buy you class!”

Trailer:

Recommendations:
Jeff: Great movie! Just don’t think it’s a documentary. This is fictionalized.
Ray:. Who knew a movie about Facebook would be so Interesting!? go see it.
Steve: I was surprisingly interested in this movie once it got going. I went in assuming I’d hate it, but walked away liking it.

The Future: 127 Hours

Starring: James Franco, Kate Mara, Amber Tamblyn, Sean Bott

Trivia:

  • Aron Ralston filmed a daily video diary whilst he was stuck in the canyon; the footage has only been shown to close friends and family and is kept in a bank vault for safety. Before shooting began both Boyle and Franco were allowed to view the footage in order to accurately portray the events in the movie.

Talking Points:

  • What is this movie trying to be? documentary/scripted/docu-drama?

Summary:

  • A mountain climber becomes trapped under a boulder while canyoneering alone near Moab, Utah and resorts to desperate measures in order to survive.

Trailer:

Excitement:
Jeff: Kill me now.
Ray: Yikes! Dont know if im scared or intrigued by this film…
Steve: Hmm…is it a docu-drama or a high budget feature? Nothing’s drawing me to it.

Coming Attractions

The Past: Halloween
The Present: RED
The Future: Unstoppable

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