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David Poland

By David Poland

Friday Estimates by Klady

Len apparently adjusted the mutt spelling, but I kinda like it like this.
Is anyone really surprised that talking dogs for girls is opening strong? It’s such a strong commercial play that Box Office Mojo offers “FAMILY – TALKING ANIMAL (LIVE ACTION)” as a genre category. And along with WB’s much (unfairly) attacked Cats & Dogs, BHC will be amongst the rare talking animal movies to open this strong while not attached to a pre-existing franchise. Kids lve penguins. Kids love the Taco Bell dog.
It’s interesting to me that anyone would see Nick & Norah’s launch as “disappointing.” Yes, it’s not a Judd Apatow launch. But here is a movie with Kat Dennings, who is recognizable to the core, but not by name, and Michael Cera, who has never been proven to open a movie.
Seems to me that this film is an indie-style film that doesn

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19 Responses to “Friday Estimates by Klady”

  1. William Goss says:

    Chihuahua and Norah are both missing h’s.

  2. William Goss says:

    And it’s Nights IN Rodanthe. (Sorry, but had to go for the hat trick.)

  3. Brett B says:

    I don’t think kids love the Taco Bell dog, considering it hasn’t been around in an ad for at least 8 years. Unless you just mean chihuahuas in general, then yes.

  4. SmilingPolitely says:

    With An American Carol’s production budget at 20 million, coupled with whatever the costs of P&A, this turd wont be making money anytime soon…

  5. LYT says:

    Why would anyone expect a Bill Maher movie to be empathetic? Snarky outrage is what he does.

  6. movieman says:

    Just got back from a matinee of “How to Lose Friends”–lot’s of catching up to do with the glut of openings this weekend!–and I’m a little stunned that the reviews (excepting Ebert’s) have been so uniformly nasty (c’mon, Manohla!) While it’s hardly 10-best-list material, I had a pleasant enough time. The level of hate that it’s generated is truly beyond comprehension.
    Not surprised by the feeble bow for “Blindness:” whatever was Focus thinking by opening it wide in the first place? Even with great reviews it would have been a tough sell, and they were hardly that (deservedly so I might add). It’s the type of self-indulgent farrago that only a very talented director can make.
    Endured–which is the kindest way to describe it–a Friday matinee of “American Carol” with about 20 other people (18 more than were at “How to Lose Friends” this afternoon), and there was barely a titter of amusement amongst them throughout the entire 83 excruciating minute running time. That struck me as odd since I’m assuming they must have been sympathetic to Zucker’s right wing bias to come out for the first performance on opening day. Or maybe they were still reeling from the “Milk” trailer that (which must have been the projectionist’s idea of a joke: and it was certainly a funnier joke than anything in the film) immediately preceded “Carol.”
    I called “Chihuahua” a few weeks back. Hardly a shocker, but it just may be the start of another Mouse House franchise.

  7. David Poland says:

    What one expects, Luke, is irrelevant to what is good or bad.
    You’re right. Watching his TV show is all about waiting for him to shut up long enough to hear his guests say something smart or challenging.
    You’ve kind of made my point.

  8. Roman says:

    “Or maybe they were still reeling from the “Milk” trailer that (which must have been the projectionist’s idea of a joke: and it was certainly a funnier joke than anything in the film)”
    That is pretty funny, actually.

  9. doug r says:

    Are you talking of Rich Lowry at the National Review? Keith Olbermann reads Rich’s “review” on the air:

  10. LYT says:

    “What one expects, Luke, is irrelevant to what is good or bad.”
    No argument there. However, then you say…
    “This movie could have actually been capital-G Great. But its insensitivity that makes it a bore”
    But I would say that given what you seem to have hoped for it, it actually never could have been capital-G great in your book, because Maher is not capable of doing the kind of film you sound like you were hoping for.
    Being disappointed in that just seems like being disappointed that Disaster Movie isn’t funny. And yes, I am agreeing with you — and making your point — that the movie is snarky and not interested in a real dialogue. I went in expecting that, and enjoyed it.
    On another topic, my first awards screener of the year came in the mail today. It’s SNOW ANGELS.

  11. David Poland says:

    SPC was out with Frozen River last week… funny that there is so much cold weather coming so early.
    I’m surprised that WB is spending money on Snow Angels. But my guess is that they hope to get some tracton for Kate or Sam with LAFCA.

  12. brack says:

    “In Religulous, if you have faith in a higher power, you are an f-ing idiot.”
    That’s a bit of a simplistic take on the film, don’t you think? Maher was completely rational and calm the whole time, I don’t get how he made anyone look foolish. The people in the movie did that all on their own.

  13. leahnz says:

    what roman said, movieman.

  14. movieman says:

    Yeah, everyone knows that the core demographic for “Milk” is the same right-wing nutjobs who would actually pay to see a movie featuring Bill O’Reilly.
    I’d like to think that it was an act of subversion on the projectionist’s part–and not just because he’s an idiot.
    (I’m wondering if the theater manager has gotten any complaints from “Carol”-ers about having to sit through an advertisement for a “ho-mo-sexual” movie.)
    Just dragged my ass in from the “Express” sneak. It’s a great movie if you really, really love football and have no working knowledge of the American civil rights movement.
    As someone who’s not a football fanatic (surprise!) and has actually done his homework on c/rights activism in the ’50s and ’60s, it felt weirdly passe and even sort of condescending in the “Obama Era.” The movie didn’t really get interesting for me until the final 20 minutes when it veers into “Brian’s Song” territory.
    And this is coming from someone who cried on cue (three times!) during “We Are Marshall.”

  15. PanTheFaun says:

    movieman, I’m with you on “How to Lose Friends…” Not quite ‘good’ but completely watchable and fairly entertaining; I’m surprised at the level of vitrol being directed towards it.
    However, I surprisingly enjoyed “The Express,” despite not giving a shit about football, and felt a lot more sincere, entertaining and well-packaged than most movies of its based-on-a-true-story ilk (much how I felt about “Flash of Genius”). If anything, I felt its coming out in an “Obama era” lent it even MORE of a resonance and emotional impact — but that’s just me.
    And I had a very similar “Carol” experience: A decent crowd who clearly agreed with the politics, but didn’t laugh once.

  16. leahnz says:

    i like the idea of a subversive projectionist!

  17. frankbooth says:

    If they agreed with the politics, Pan, I would hardly call them “decent.”

  18. The hatred towards How to Lose Friends… can probably be put to Kirsten Dunst. She elicits irrational hate out of a lot of people.

  19. movieman says:

    I just realized that I incorrectly identified Focus as the distributer of “Blindness.” Yikes; sorry about that, Miramax!
    But it definitely seems more like a Focus than a Miramax release, doesn’t it? Maybe because Meirelles’ last movie (“Constant Gardener”) went out through Focus; and possibly because Miramax hardly releases anything these days in the post-Weinstein era.

Quote Unquotesee all »

It shows how out of it I was in trying to be in it, acknowledging that I was out of it to myself, and then thinking, “Okay, how do I stop being out of it? Well, I get some legitimate illogical narrative ideas” — some novel, you know?

So I decided on three writers that I might be able to option their material and get some producer, or myself as producer, and then get some writer to do a screenplay on it, and maybe make a movie.

And so the three projects were “Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep,” “Naked Lunch” and a collection of Bukowski. Which, in 1975, forget it — I mean, that was nuts. Hollywood would not touch any of that, but I was looking for something commercial, and I thought that all of these things were coming.

There would be no Blade Runner if there was no Ray Bradbury. I couldn’t find Philip K. Dick. His agent didn’t even know where he was. And so I gave up.

I was walking down the street and I ran into Bradbury — he directed a play that I was going to do as an actor, so we know each other, but he yelled “hi” — and I’d forgot who he was.

So at my girlfriend Barbara Hershey’s urging — I was with her at that moment — she said, “Talk to him! That guy really wants to talk to you,” and I said “No, fuck him,” and keep walking.

But then I did, and then I realized who it was, and I thought, “Wait, he’s in that realm, maybe he knows Philip K. Dick.” I said, “You know a guy named—” “Yeah, sure — you want his phone number?”

My friend paid my rent for a year while I wrote, because it turned out we couldn’t get a writer. My friends kept on me about, well, if you can’t get a writer, then you write.”
~ Hampton Fancher

“That was the most disappointing thing to me in how this thing was played. Is that I’m on the phone with you now, after all that’s been said, and the fundamental distinction between what James is dealing with in these other cases is not actually brought to the fore. The fundamental difference is that James Franco didn’t seek to use his position to have sex with anyone. There’s not a case of that. He wasn’t using his position or status to try to solicit a sexual favor from anyone. If he had — if that were what the accusation involved — the show would not have gone on. We would have folded up shop and we would have not completed the show. Because then it would have been the same as Harvey Weinstein, or Les Moonves, or any of these cases that are fundamental to this new paradigm. Did you not notice that? Why did you not notice that? Is that not something notable to say, journalistically? Because nobody could find the voice to say it. I’m not just being rhetorical. Why is it that you and the other critics, none of you could find the voice to say, “You know, it’s not this, it’s that”? Because — let me go on and speak further to this. If you go back to the L.A. Times piece, that’s what it lacked. That’s what they were not able to deliver. The one example in the five that involved an issue of a sexual act was between James and a woman he was dating, who he was not working with. There was no professional dynamic in any capacity.

~ David Simon