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David Poland

By David Poland

BYOB Humday 5+5=10

Iron Man 2 is coming… and he’s bringing an interesting discussion about the problems with sequels with him… but more on that later…
Here’s some room for you to be nice to each other and to over thoughtful ideas…

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32 Responses to “BYOB Humday 5+5=10”

  1. Josh Massey says:

    So what the hell is the title of the upcoming Shrek sequel?
    After initially seeing it labeled Shrek Goes Fourth, I’ve seen posters touting Shrek Forever After, but just saw a TV ad selling Shrek: The Final Chapter.

  2. aris says:

    Thin Red Line. Criterion. Blu-ray. That is all.

  3. berg says:

    ironman 2 is like the modern cinematic equivalent of comfort food, it is like ordering cheese fries with a side of a basket of fries

  4. torpid bunny says:

    Finally saw Star Trek. Was expecting another glossy, over-produced Abrams joint. And the first act was crap. But I LOVED it. The second act was one of the best second acts I’ve ever seen. Wow. Terrific stuff. I would go into detail but that would be thousands of words probably. If Abrams could cut out the gratuitous CG/action sequences and go to the Jim Cameron school of effective dramatic lulls, he could be one of the best big-time directors. Terrific ensemble acting, wonderful integration of special effects, and a great great script filled with ideas, contrary to what Poland said about it. When Zoe Saldana talks to Spock in the lift after his mother dies…I seriously wept. What an actress.

  5. jeffmcm says:

    I’ll bite – what were the ideas?

  6. Telemachos says:

    I liked ST quite a bit, but to me, it falls short of greatness because of the extremely lackluster villain (both in terms of his plan and his background, or even, at a minimum, his lack of awesome badness.) There was also a bit of dubious technobabble to conveniently jump around plot complications and the movie didn’t really seem to build towards a really cool final battle or resolution. It peaked in the second act.

  7. torpid bunny says:

    The nature of leadership. How leadership is the result of a conflict of wills. The nature of grief. The traumatic power of grief to shape a personality. The way that different personalities experience a crisis. How a crisis demands the total effort and commitment of a person, how it demands decisive action. The conflict between reason and emotion. How overwhelming emotions can be hidden and channeled into a numb excess of logicality or reasonability. The relationship between the self at different times of life. How our older selves are in a way fathers to our younger selves.
    The understated way Leonard Nimoy (who I’m a total sucker for) says, “And I can tell you, I am emotionally compromised…” Wow. The wistful way he says “Engage thrusters full” at the end. I was just blown away by the emotional depth and the powerful sadness of this movie.

  8. My guess is that Shrek 4 tested poorly, and the reviews are pretty lousy so far. And perhaps audiences found the pun-y title confusing, so to make it simpler and sell the idea of urgency for this entirely unnecessary third sequel, Dreamworks is selling it as the grand finale. We’ll see if Paramount/Dreamworks ever offers up an official explanation for the last-second title change.

  9. LexG says:

    The single worst reviewer on the Internet, also known as the single worst American in America, is hailing IM2 as the most Republican, patriotic, jingoistic, ass-kicking love letter to the military since The Green Berets.
    In other words, christian, stay home this Friday:
    Hey, I’m all pro-military and hawkish and right-leaning a lot of the time too, but I still find it hilarious that Nolte’s entire boner for this series and it’s star is based entirely on some could-go-either-way interview where Robert Downey Jr. said he’s not a liberal anymore. Which doesn’t exactly mean he’s some firebrand conservative.
    Anyway, you guys who’ve seen it– is it REALLY as hard-core conservative Republican and apple pie as this guy says?

  10. jeffmcm says:

    Thanks for answering, Torpid Bunny. I still agree with David Poland’s side of the argument (I think Star Trek was the world’s biggest, most-expensive TV pilot), but what you said was worthwhile in helping me to understand why people like it so much.

  11. Chucky in Jersey says:

    Of course the Big Hollywood blog would love it. Par is owned by Viacom (whose chairman is a neocon), Marvel is now owned by Disney (another pro-government outfit) and Breitbart is a crony of right-wing snitch Drudge.
    To get a more insightful review you have to cross the pond. “Iron Man 2” opened in Blighty last week so it will have its 4-weeks-and-out before the World Cup.

  12. jeffmcm says:

    Chucky, you do know that this movie was in production wayyyy in advance of the purchase by Disney?
    Also, since the movie name-checks the first Iron Man, it’s going to be horrible, right?

  13. torpid bunny says:

    You’re welcome jeff! Don’t get me wrong, there’s plenty of cheese and awkward franchise filmmaking, the first act is garbage and the third act is ho-hum, but for a little bit it hits a very high level. Plus I’m a total sucker for Leonard Nimoy. I hope they bring him back.

  14. Jerry Colvin says:

    Anyone who thinks Shrek 4 got a last second title change hasn’t been watching the commercials on kiddie channels for the past month or two. Which have all said Shrek: The Final Chapter, even though that’s not the actual name of the movie. Kind of like how the dragon movie weirdly got changed to Dragons even though that’s not its actual name either.

  15. Nicol D says:

    “on some could-go-either-way interview where Robert Downey Jr. said he’s not a liberal anymore. Which doesn’t exactly mean he’s some firebrand conservative.”
    Downey gave an interview with the NYT’s where he is asked about his political opinions. He says he has a very interesting opinion but it is one he does not speak of much around LA dinner parties. He says you cannot go through what he has went through and come out a liberal. Yes, he uses that word.
    He also gave an interview with Vanity Fair where the interviewer comes into his home and notes a photo of him and GW on the fridge.
    He also was at the Repub McCain convention.
    Read into that what you will.
    Personally, I am glad conseratives and libertarians do not just have Bo Derek and Tom Selleck on their side anymore.
    Downey can act circles around the best lib actors (Clooney, Penn, Hanks) and they are glad to have him aboard.
    As Batman said…things change.
    But the biggest evidence I have that Downey must be conservative/liberatarian is that other friends I have who are very left wing and conscious of who is or is not a lib in Hollywood now refer to Downey as a hack. All the proof I need.

  16. Nicol D says:

    “Of course the Big Hollywood blog would love it. Par is owned by Viacom (whose chairman is a neocon), Marvel is now owned by Disney (another pro-government outfit) and Breitbart is a crony of right-wing snitch Drudge.”
    Yes, because that’s how reviews work. How any of this links is a cryptic code.
    If this sort of rubbish is true, then please write a post on how the most “right wing fascist” Fox under “right wing fascist” Rupert Murdoch produced the most left wing wackadoodle eco blockbuster by the most left wing wackadoodle eco director out there? And remember, they invested before they knew it would be a 3D smash.
    Please…no less than 500 words.

  17. christian says:

    So liberal drug laws put Downey into prison?

  18. Krazy Eyes says:

    The mere thought of Nicol and Chucky engaging in debate is going to have me checking this blog all day.

  19. storymark says:

    Torpid – Sorry to tell you, but just a couple weeks ago, Nimoy said he would not be appearing in any more Trek films, feeling that he would be undermining Quinto, and because he is retiring from acting. He said his most recent appearance on Fringe will be his last acting job.

  20. Joe Leydon says:

    OK, I have advance-ordered tickets to see Iron Man 2 in IMAX on Saturday. (My son and I are bringing his mom as an early Mother’s Day celebration.) So I’m curious: Since I’ve already paid for the tickets, will that be counted as part of the opening day gross? Or the Saturday gross?

  21. Wrecktum says:

    Star Trek (the overrated franchise killer made by J.J. Abrams, not the sublime creation of Gene Roddenberry) came out almost a year ago and I’m just now thankfully forgetting it. Why bring up the bad memories again?

  22. Stella's Boy says:

    Same Nicol, different day. Acting quality is synonymous with political beliefs. Clearly the potentially conservative Downey, Jr. is vastly superior to the known liberals/socialists/communists/fascists. And of course he’s conservative because Nicol’s numerous liberal friends think he’s overrated. They could and would never believe that if he screamed left-wing screeds to the heavens! I mean I used to love Jon Voight until I found out he’s conservative. Now he’s a hack who’s never given a good performance in his life.
    And of course if you don’t love and worship Iron Man 2, you hate America. The lukewarm reviews coming from sources as varied as Joblo and The NJ Star-Ledger prove that any criticism at all means you are a dovish, pinko-pussy who hates America and freedom and liberty and loves terrorists and the Taliban and radical Islam.

  23. torpid bunny says:

    Chucky’s probably a bit pre-occupied with this

  24. movielocke says:

    Love that map of all the Indy theatres left in LA. That should have a Blog entry for people to give a shout out to their favorites.
    I gotta say the Moxie in Springfield MO is a godsend when I’m in the area visiting family, for months this was the only theatre within three hundred miles playing Slumdog Millionaire, but they also have great and terrific programming, often partnering with the local Missouri State University.
    Here in LA, I am a fan of The Silent Movie Theatre, though honestly, its annoying location prevents me from going most of the time. However I’ve caught many a great film there. I know that The American Cinematheque, Nuart and New Beverly are more properly repertory theatres, but then so is the Silent Movie theatre. The Nuart is not on that Map and really should me, along with the Monica 4. How great is it that in LA, our megaplexes run the Arthouse theatre. I went to the Century City AMC megaplex to see Waking Sleeping Beauty, could you do that anywhere else in the country? I don’t think so. And The arclight, with their repertory weekly programming and festivals should almost be considered art house as well, even though I don’t think they remotely are, but they’ve got more stock to claim that by than the Landmark which deliberately TRIES to give off an arty vibe, but imo, is more commercial.

  25. torpid bunny says:

    That money doesn’t count Joe because it’s IMAX. duh.

  26. jeffmcm says:

    Lex, why do you insist on putting yourself in contact with Nolte and the Big Hollywood crowd? You’re obviously stalking him, but why?
    And whatever Downey’s political beliefs are, I think we’re all better off that he’s keeping them to himself. Between Sean Penn on one side and Victoria Jackson on the other, it gets tiresome. (Although I am curious as to how being in prison would make a person more conservative – does Downey think he should have been in there longer?)
    Also, I have a really hard time believing that Nicol has ‘friends’ who are ‘very left-wing’.

  27. jeffmcm says:

    ALSO, the Bilge article linked on the MCN page is interesting, but he seems to have forgotten that Plan 9 from Outer Space and Reefer Madness, two bad movies made by bad filmmakers, were cult movies at the same time as Rocky Horror, Eraserhead, etc. (good movies made by people who knew what they were doing that happened to be non-mainstream).

  28. David Poland says:

    Actually, Movielocke, AMC announced a plan to commit two screens per plex to arthouse in most of their markets.
    NuArt is not a rep house. Nor is Amer Cinematheque. The only real, full-on rep house in LA is New Beverly and yes, Silent Movie House is, while sporadic, a mini-revival house.
    Arclight is servicing a high end audience and has the advantage of some very small screens… under 200 seats… that they can stick a small film in without much danger of failing too badly. The new Pasadena location is mostly small rooms – with big screens and sound – actually.
    Joe – How that money is counted is really up to the studio. Usually, they load all the pre-sale into opening day to get the most media bang for the buck.

  29. Cadavra says:

    A true liberal, such as myself, judges the art, not the person. My life would be a lot poorer if I arbitrarily skipped the films of Hawks, Capra, Disney, DeMille, Eastwood, John Wayne, Jimmy Stewart, Myrna Loy, Gary Cooper, Bob Hope, et al, because of their political beliefs. (Hell, some of them were anti-Semitic to boot.) If Downey is now a conservative, that’s his business, and I will continue to see almost anything he’s in.

  30. jeffmcm says:

    How are the Egyptian and Aero not rep houses when most of what they show are old films? This month they’re doing series on Kurosawa and Hitchcock among others.

  31. christian says:

    Cadavra FTW.

  32. “Also, I have a really hard time believing that Nicol has ‘friends’ who are ‘very left-wing’.”
    Nicol probably has a friend who recycles and another who only owns single shot weaponry. Oh, and one Jewish friend.

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