Thursday, June 30, 2016

My Tops of 2016 - June

THE CONJURING 2 was a very blah horror flick that greatly failed in the scare department and has a chore of a sequel story.

THE NICE GUYS is absolutely perfect for what it wants to be: a rollicking funny and bloody crime comedy.

Halftime Report: My overall movie count is 18. That's three more than last year's mid-year count! Hooray! I'm not so worried about the low amount right now as I do expect to step up my film watching game.

As you can see, I have two new additions to my "Worst Films of 2016" list. I still currently stand by my "2 out of 5" reviews for those two but whenever I think or talk about them, the more my distaste for them grows. There may be plenty of bad movies in the future to knock them off my Bottom 20 but like the NY Lottery, you may never know.

Best Films of 2016

1. The Witch

2. Zootopia

3. The Nice Guys

4. Green Room

5. Captain America: Civil War

6. Deadpool

7. Midnight Special

Worst Films of 2016

1. Batman v. Superman: Dawn of Justice

2. The Boss

3. Ratchet & Clank

Sunday, June 26, 2016

Bill Cunningham - RIP

Bill Cunningham died yesterday after suffering from a stroke. He was 87 years old.

Cunningham was a tireless fashion photographer for the New York Times, where he crafted a color photo collage in the Style section every week revolving around a trend he personally picked out. He would roam all around New York with his camera and bicycle, spending most of the day on the streets snapping away at the passerby's, developing his artistry on the fly until he head back to the office and perfected his collages with the photo editors.

Cunningham will forever be remembered in the fantastic 2010 documentary Bill Cunningham New York, where his charming personality, unbreakable work ethic, and love for fashion was projected widely.

He will be missed.

Sunday, June 19, 2016

Anton Yelchin - RIP

It has shockingly been announced today that Anton Yelchin has died from a freak car accident at his home. He was only 27 years old.

The son of two Russian figure skaters who took refuge in the States when he was still a baby, Yelchin got started in Hollywood as a child actor. His most notable early role was in Hearts of Atlantis, playing the younger version of the main character, who befriends his possibly psychic neighbor Anthony Hopkins.

Yelchin's first big breaks came with Alpha Dog, where he played a slightly fictionalized version of murder victim Nicholas Markowitz, and Charlie Bartlett, staring as the Ferris Bueller like titular character. However, his true breakthrough came in 2009 with two big time blockbusters. The first was the generally unsatisfactory Terminator Salvation, where he was one of the few bright spots as a teenage Kyle Reese. But the one that made him shine with the public was as the more handsome and humorous version of Ensign Pavel Chekov in J.J. Abrams' Star Trek.

Since then, he has quickly made a name for himself in both Hollywood and indie productions as a more than capable actor portraying young adults. His good looks, ability to play a likable hero, and a desire to experiment allowed him to star in cult horror titles such as the remake of Fright Night and the Dean Koontz' adaptation of Odd Thomas. His quirky voice also gave him plenty of voice-over work, with his biggest role being as Clumsy Smurf in The Smurfs films and specials.

2016 looked to be another great year for Yelchin, as his performance in Green Room saw raves and he's set to reprise Chekov in Star Trek Beyond. He had a lot more on his plate into becoming a better young star but sadly we will never see it.

He will sorely be missed.

Thursday, June 9, 2016

Batman: The Killing Joke Coming To Theaters!

Great news, Batman fans!

It has been announced that Batman: The Killing Joke will be premiering on the big screen all over the nation a week before its expected direct-to-video release. Thanks to Fathom Events, the film adaptation of the controversial comic book story will have an one night only screening on July 25. This will be the first time since Batman: Mask of the Phantasm in 1993 where a DC Comics animated film will be in theaters.

Tickets will be made available starting on June 17.

Tuesday, June 7, 2016

Kimbo Slice - RIP

Days after losing the greatest fighting legend, we sadly have another shocking death of a popular pugilist. It has been reported that MMA fighter Kimbo Slice suddenly died last night from heart failure. He was 42 years old.

Real name Kevin Ferguson, Kimbo broke out in the fighting world thanks to several viral videos of him engaging in street fights. His fierce look matched up with his sheer knockout power and helped earn him a contract with EliteXC.

Though he was etched into history by being in the main event of the first ever primetime MMA special, his prowess in the ring was extremely less than stellar. His punches were deadly but his technique was poor and his cardio was atrocious. He squeaked by with a few controversial wins until infamously losing to replacement fighter Seth Petruzelli 14 seconds into the fight. The promotion would soon fold soon after.

Dana White and UFC signed Slice to a contract to participate in the latest season of The Ultimate Fighter. Focused squarely on heavyweights and partially intended to make him an even bigger star, the show immediately saw its money burn right up, as Kimbo was unceremoniously defeated in the very first contest. He showed some improvement at the finale, beating Houston Alexander by unanimous decision and making the highlight reel thanks to a vicious back suplex, but after losing in PPV debut match against Matt Mitrione, he was released by the promotion.

Despite his professional setbacks as a MMA fighter, his friendly demeanor and great exterior presence still made him a popular commodity. His post-UFC career saw him participating in several direct-to-video films and nearly saw him enter into professional wrestling. He started to compete in boxing, where he earned his record of 7-0.

At the start of 2015, Kimbo was announced as signing with new rival MMA promotion Bellator. His first match was against legend Ken Shamrock and saw him winning due to TKO. Unfortunately, the match itself was lambasted by viewers and critics as being fixed. His second fight was against fellow street fighter Dada 5000. Despite much fanfare and promotion, the fight was unequivocally a disaster. Both quickly blew up and spent the entire time resting on each other or whiffing their punches. After two arduous rounds, Kimbo was able to get Dada to flop on the canvas and be defeated by his own exhaustion. Kimbo's victory was short-lived as his drug test revealed that he took anabolic steroids and was subsequently reprimanded.

Kimbo Slice was intended to fight Josh Thompson in July for Bellator but his sudden demise has made the upcoming event moot. Kimbo was not a good pound-for-pound fighter but he was a bonafide star, able to create his own niche in the sport of MMA and bring in the casual crowd.

He will be missed.