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David Poland

By David Poland poland@moviecitynews.com

It's A Warner Bros Valentines Day

Wbvalentine

Movies are like a box of choc-o-lates…

15 Responses to “It's A Warner Bros Valentines Day”

  1. bicycle bob says:

    classy move warners

  2. Mark says:

    David, what did you get them?

  3. thedoom says:

    How do I get on that mailing list? 😀

  4. Ray Pride says:

    MGM sent out “Be Cool” hearts for that movie; Disney’s got something in the next couple of months with “photobooth” photos of Ashton Kutcher kissing a girl accompanied by an off-the-shelf pack of SweetHearts. (Cheaper dates.)

  5. Ty Smith says:

    Yup, nothing spells Klass with a Kapital K than cheap Kandies as a way to try to bribe Kritics….

  6. jon s says:

    Thanks for putting the photo up, Dave. It’s important for people to know just how much pathetic bribery goes on between the studios and “critics”/”journalists.”
    What’s so pathetic is that unlike in Washington, Hollywood critics are such whores for the cheapest kind of bribes. You’d think they’d have to do more than give out candy hearts to get full grown adults to sign their names to statements calling Legally Blond 2 “Smart, Sassy, Sophisticated!” or Bogeyman the “most terrifying thrill ride so far this year!”

  7. David Poland says:

    I hear Earl Dittman gives his quotes on the massage table and considers his own cry of “That was the best of the year!” a happy ending.

  8. Dan R% says:

    Complain all you want, but I doubt there’d be anyone here who would deny all the free swag. It may not make any film better, but it’s sure fun to look at.

  9. Sandy says:

    God bless America. Swag like this for movie promotions can’t possibly exist anywhere else.

  10. Ty Smith says:

    I’d deny the swag. My middle name’s Mortimer, not Whoreboy.

  11. Josh Massey says:

    If you’d ever seen Earl Dittman, then you’d know there was NO WAY he could get atop a massage table.

  12. Mark says:

    Anyone complaining is just jealous.

  13. lazarus says:

    Funny, I didn’t know Miss Congeniality was franchise material. It sure as hell isn’t Legally Blonde. Are these people really that convinced of Sandra Bullock’s longevity? If Julia isn’t as big as she used to be, what makes them think her junior counterpart will fare any better?
    Ain’t goin’ nowhere.

  14. Geoff says:

    Now, I am not the biggest Sandra Bullock fan. I dug her in Speed (hey, who didn’t?) and she certainly charmed in While You Were Sleeping, but since then she really grated on me.
    But when I saw a free preview of Miss Congeniality with my wife, several years ago, I laughed out loud several times. It’s a pretty funny film and her scenes with Michael Caine made me smile.
    That said, do I have high hopes for the sequel? Nope. And it’s funny that you mention Legally Blonde. I liked the first one in that franchise, too, but then the sequel was just god awful. And Regina King is in both sequels, playing the same kind of sassy antagonist/ally to the main character? Hey, she was great in Ray, but this does not bode well. Sandra should have quit while she was ahead. And no Michael Caine, Candace Bergin, or Benjamin Bratt? New cast, sillier premise, seems like Speed 2 all over again.

  15. Mark says:

    Legally Blonde 2 ruined all the good will the first one garnered up. A good little movie.

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This is probably going to sound petty, but Martin Scorsese insisting that critics see his film in theaters even though it’s going straight to Netflix and then not screening it in most American cities was a watershed moment for me in this theatrical versus streaming debate.

I completely respect when a filmmaker insists that their movie is meant to be seen in the theater, but the thing is, you got to actually make it possible to see it in the theater. Some movies may be too small for that, and that’s totally OK.

When your movie is largely financed by a streaming service and is going to appear on that streaming service instantly, I don’t really see the point of pretending that it’s a theatrical film. It just seems like we are needlessly indulging some kind of personal fantasy.

I don’t think that making a feature film length production that is going to go straight to a video platform is some sort of “step down.“ I really don’t. Theatrical exhibition as we know it is dying off anyway, for a variety of reasons.

I should clarify myself because this thread is already being misconstrued — I’m talking about how the movie is screened in advance. If it’s going straight to Netflix, why the ritual of demanding people see it in the theater?

There used to be a category that everyone recognized called “TV movie” or “made for television movie” and even though a lot of filmmakers considered that déclassé, it seems to me that probably 90% of feature films fit that description now.

Atlantis has mostly sunk into the ocean, only a few tower spires remain above the waterline, and I’m increasingly at peace with that, because it seems to be what the industry and much of the audience wants. We live in an age of convenience and information control.

Only a very elite group of filmmakers is still allowed to make movies “for theaters“ and actually have them seen and judged that way on a wide scale. Even platform releasing seems to be somewhat endangered. It can’t be fought. It has to be accepted.

9. Addendum: I’ve been informed that it wasn’t Scorsese who requested that the Bob Dylan documentary only be screened for critics in theaters, but a Netflix representative indicated the opposite to me, so I just don’t know what to believe.

It’s actually OK if your film is not eligible for an Oscar — we have a thing called the Emmys. A lot of this anxiety is just a holdover from the days when television was considered culturally inferior to theatrical feature films. Everybody needs to just get over it.

In another 10 to 20 years they’re probably going to merge the Emmys in the Oscars into one program anyway, maybe they’ll call it the Contentys.

“One of the fun things about seeing the new Quentin Tarantino film three months early in Cannes (did I mention this?) is that I know exactly why it’s going to make some people furious, and thus I have time to steel myself for the takes.

Back in July 2017, when it was revealed that Tarantino’s next project was connected to the Manson Family murders, it was condemned in some quarters as an insulting and exploitative stunt. We usually require at least a fig-leaf of compassion for the victims in true-crime adaptations, and even Tarantino partisans like myself – I don’t think he’s made a bad film yet – found ourselves wondering how he might square his more outré stylistic impulses with the depiction of a real mass murder in which five people and one unborn child lost their lives.

After all, it’s one thing to slice off with gusto a fictional policeman’s ear; it’s quite another to linger over the gory details of a massacre that took place within living memory, and which still carries a dread historical significance.

In her essay The White Album, Joan Didion wrote: “Many people I know in Los Angeles believe that the Sixties ended abruptly on August 9, 1969, ended at the exact moment when word of the murders on Cielo Drive traveled like brushfire through the community, and in a sense this is true.”

Early in Once Upon a Time in Hollywood, as Leonardo DiCaprio and Brad Pitt’s characters drive up the hill towards Leo’s bachelor pad, the camera cranes up gently to reveal a street sign: Cielo Drive. Tarantino understands how charged that name is; he can hear the Molotov cocktails clinking as he shoulders the crate.

As you may have read in the reviews from Cannes, much of the film is taken up with following DiCaprio and Pitt’s characters – a fading TV actor and his long-serving stunt double – as they amusingly go about their lives in Los Angeles, while Margot Robbie’s Sharon Tate is a relatively minor presence. But the spectre of the murders is just over the horizon, and when the night of the 9th finally arrives, you feel the mood in the cinema shift.

No spoilers whatsoever about what transpires on screen. But in the audience, as it became clear how Tarantino was going to handle this extraordinarily loaded moment, the room soured and split, like a pan of cream left too long on the hob. I craned in, amazed, but felt the person beside me recoil in either dismay or disgust.

Two weeks on, I’m convinced that the scene is the boldest and most graphically violent of Tarantino’s career – I had to shield my eyes at one point, found myself involuntarily groaning “oh no” at another – and a dead cert for the most controversial. People will be outraged by it, and with good reason. But in a strange and brilliant way, it takes Didion’s death-of-the-Sixties observation and pushes it through a hellfire-hot catharsis.

Hollywood summoned up this horror, the film seems to be saying, and now it’s Hollywood’s turn to exorcise it. I can’t wait until the release in August, when we can finally talk about why.

~ Robbie Collin