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BYO Keanu


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92 Responses to “BYO Keanu”

  1. leahnz says:

    random keanu factoid: river died during the LA production of ‘speed’ and they just shut the works for a bit (de bont said keanu was in shock and sandy b was also a good friend, de bont said he wasn’t sure how they’d go on but they were a great comfort to one another going forward), so whenever i watch ‘speed’ i can’t help but think of this and wonder when during the filming it happened, which of course i can’t tell. at this rate keanu will still be around in 2056 making movies and look largely the same.

  2. Triple Option says:

    I was planning on watching Speed in the next few weeks. It’s been a quite a long time since I watched it cover to cover but since 1994 — aka The Best Year of Cinema EVAR!! — was [GASP!] 25 years ago, I wanted to break it and a few other from its class out to re-watch. I wouldn’t have associated the two together but I shouldn’t be so surprised. I also wouldn’t have guessed River and Natalie Merchant were buds but her tribute is one of my favorite songs by her.

  3. leahnz says:

    fwiw river and keanu became fast friends on the set of ‘parenthood’, because river was an old mother hen and went to the set a lot to look after joaquin, and was also going out with martha p at the time. r and k went on to make ‘i love you to death’ and ‘private idaho’ together (keanu has some really weird and hilarious stories about little adventures he and riv went on in italy on the idaho shoot, i think they were kindred spirits in many ways. when he talks about river now its like this hush comes over him, this reverence, like talking about a most beloved and sacred ghost or something).

    re speed, i so miss those solid, actually-somewhat-plausible real-world mid-level action movies (apart from the freeway overpass jump thing which is just OTT silly but i give it my one too silly pass). in hindsight de bont probably should have stuck to photography but he did make one good’un that’ll probably stand the test of time.

    (this is kind of hilarious: i was wondering what yost, the speed writer – pretty nice job too, nowadays i suspect the writing for speed would be rubbish – was up to and i see he’s been writing episodes of SNEAKY PETE haha. there you go)

    ETA merchant’s song for riv is really lovely

  4. movieman says:

    I just rewatched “My Own Private Idaho” which I hadn’t seen since 1991.
    Remember appreciating it without quite making the sort of intense emotional connection I did with, say, another River Phoenix movie that year (Nancy Savoca’s wondrous “Dogfight”).

    Maybe I wasn’t quite ready.

    It now feels like the Queer Cinema classic its most ardent supporters (mostly working out of Village Voice publications) claimed at the time.

    And River? I think it’s one of the greatest screen performances in the history of cinema: Brando in “Last Tango;” DeNiro in “Taxi Driver;” Rowlands in “A Woman Under the Influence;” etc.

    Have always loved and defended Keanu. Never thought he’d grow up to become one of the most iconic male action stars of the modern era. So bow.

  5. leahnz says:

    river’s perf as narcoleptic mike waters is simply magnificent and devastating, aching pathos and vulnerability, tragedy and comedy, heartbreak and hope, and ethereal beauty (keanu’s aloof scott favor is a good foil for mike as gentle protector then eventual betrayer/villain of the piece, their chemistry together is intense)

    movieman i’ve been meaning to ask you for ages if you ever managed to see ‘my own private river’ – the ‘alternative cut’ of sorts that van sant allowed franco to edit together from all the unused alternate takes/outtakes and unused footage from the MOPI shoot, of which there was a lot, apparently.

    i’m not sure if it was ever publicly released in some form or leaked online, if so def check it out, it’s narratively scattershot but basically just an extended ride-along with mike waters, and river’s utterly mesmerising. i was living in LA briefly some years back and decided to take a guitar class near where i was staying just for the hell of it – my playing sucks – and i happened to strike up a friendship with this lovely woman also taking the class; we got to know each other a bit and were talking one night about family and it turns out she’s river’s cousin, which was just so bizarre. anyway ‘my own private river’ was really hard to get and i ended up being able to copy hers, so that was sweet, but it’s frustrating how hard this stuff is to get – i did manage to get a dvd of sluizer’s ‘dark blood’ when he first sold some special edition copies online so that was lucky, fascinating movie. i don’t think it was ever even released because of distribution issues.

    keanu’s keanu — at this point he’s just kind of an icon, really, no point in debating about his acting chops, which some people like to do, he’s a thoroughly decent fellow and i’m just glad he’s still out there doing the bidness

  6. Hcat says:

    TO, I’m actually a little torn on the summer of 94. There was some great stuff but everything was soooooooo slick. Its like everything was firing on all cylinders but that made everything feel slightly mechanic. Speed, True Lies, Lion King, Gump, and the incredible Clear and Present Danger all seemed like after all those years everyone had finally figured out the formula on how to make a modern studio film. They were all great (though I have some problems with Lies and Gump), but I always think that Pulp Fiction hit like it did because it was able to provide such a Gonzo alternative to all the familiar packages that immediately preceded it.

    I just went back and looked at the grosses for that summer, and I remember Wyatt Earp tanking (for all the ire that Waterworld got, Earp was really the first and more egregious crack in the armor) but I didn’t know it was outgrossed by In The Army Now. Ouch.

  7. Stella's Boy says:

    Not much that Wyatt Earp wasn’t outgrossed by that summer. That was some star power though. Getting a $65 million, three-hour-plus Western greenlit.

    Lifelong member of the Keanu Fan Club. Always surprised when someone says they don’t like him or that he can’t act. Sure he’s made some stinkers but who hasn’t. Thrilled by how well the JW movies have done and looking forward to seeing the third.

  8. movieman says:

    Nope, have not seen that alternative “Idaho” cut, Leah. It sounds fascinating, though.
    Admire the hell out of Van Sant for marching to the beat of his own drummer for three decades now.

  9. Hcat says:

    “Getting a $65 million, three-hour-plus Western greenlit.”

    IIRC it was originally conceived as a two parter filmed back to back (BTTF sequels had just proven that a possibility) but they got cold feet (or just saw the dailies) and decided to scrunch into one big epic. Costner was the biggest star in the world at the time, Kasden was one of big potential talents to come out of the eighties, Wolves and Unforgiven had brought back the western, on paper Earp was a pretty good idea.

  10. Stella's Boy says:

    Didn’t know Wyatt Earp was originally going to be two parts. Also didn’t know that Costner was originally attached to Tombstone. Yes at that time because of Costner and Unforgiven I can see how only with hindsight does it seem like a bad idea.

  11. Hcat says:

    Actually I would say it was still a good idea, just really dreadfully executed. For all the legit ‘what were they thinking?’ releases, a Landis directed Beverly Hills Cop, The Shadow, a City Slickers sequel, Baby’s Day Out, a Front Pageish romantic comedy starring Julia Roberts and Nick Nolte?, Earp was actually on pretty solid ground.

    Sidenote on the Nolte mention, the OTHER soft focus male romantic lead slowly falling in awkward love while a soft saxophone wails in the background for that summer was Nic Cage. That is how clean and pressed that summer was, the throwback ‘don’t make them like that anymore’ attempts at screwball romance starred starched and respectable versions of Cage, of Wild At Heart and Vampire’s Kiss, and Nolte, who if you saw on the street in the ’80s you would ask yourself two questions A) who shaved that bear and B) why did they do such a poor job of it.

  12. Hcat says:

    So about a week ago someone mentioned terrible predictions, I remember thinking at different times, No one is going to accept the goof from Bill and Ted as an action star, and also that Keanu was completely done after 47 Ronin. Usually I don’t mind being wrong, but in both those cases I could not be more happy that I was mistaken. Glad that star vehicles like this still exist.

  13. Sideshow Bill says:

    Saw JW3 last night and had a blast. The first 45 minutes are masterful, and it isn’t quite able to keep that pace but it still hits some crazy ass highs before the ending. A few gripes. Not enough Jason Mantzoukus. I thought his roll was bigger.

    I’ve loved Keanu forever. Put him in the right roll and he is wonderful to watch. The audience last night, packed theater, ate this thing up. There were more cheers and laughs and gasps than I heard at Endgame.

    Fun movie experience. No spoilers from me but I’m eager for more.

  14. Hcat says:

    Is there room to continue or did they seem to give it a sense of finality?

  15. sam says:

    I’m going to wrangle this back because everyone pretty much got off topic (de blont, river, wyatt earp???) as only a smart queen can do.

    My biggest Keanu moment was in Something’s Gotta Give. He was just so gorgeous that I felt like a teenager watching him. I couldn’t figure out why Erica (Keaton) would even want to look at Nicholson when she could’ve had the ultimate trophy wife – a hot guy AND a doctor!

  16. BO Sock Puppet says:

    So now we know that Endgame tops out around $825-850m for a comfortable #2 all-time domestic. SW: Episode 9 will have to have major redemptive qualities to even top the last chapter, much less look to place on the big board. That leaves it to JC to try for king of the world one more time with AVATAR episodes 2-17. After that, I suppose movies as we think of them are likely over. Good times.

  17. Hcat says:

    Or Jason Blum makes a some $20 million dollar movie with an original idea that catches on in just such a way it tops them all and changes the dynamic……

    But that is probably too much to hope for. A realization that 5 movies that cost 50 and bring in a billion is a superior business plan to a 250 million blockbuster that brings in the same.

  18. Serg says:

    Sock Puppet- at least when Avatar broke out and became the biggest of all time, it was an original picture. Not the 20th+ film in a 12 year old saga. But yeah franchises have pretty much ruined the theatrical experience.

    Though, to Hcat’s point.. the answer is simple, much easier to hit one home run than five. Yeah when you miss, you miss big, but on the whole, moneyball studio filmmaking, makes sense to bank on known IP with 9 figure WW P&A and a host of ancillary and sequel/spin off opportunities. If you were trying to run a successful enterprise, that makes absolute sense.
    Kind of like how in basketball you score the same amount of points hitting 1/3 of threes versus half your regular shots, yet it is much harder to make half your regular baskets.

  19. movieman says:

    “See You Yesterday” is terrific.
    If you have Netflix, try to find the time and watch it this weekend.

  20. Triple Option says:

    @Hcat, Not just the summer but the whole of ’94. I’m so lucky, around the Oscars time of ’93, someone challenged me about see all the nominated films if I wanted to work in entertainment. So from that time forward I was going to make the effort to see EVERYTHING. Three of the biggest films of that year that turned out to be pretty iconic, Lion King, Pulp Fiction and Gump, I thought were fine but didn’t really resonate with me. I don’t think there was big budget action fatigue but Pulp Fiction was definitely the right film for the time. I think, too, that Reservoir Dogs, and to a lesser extent, True Romance, built up a lot of good will and anticipation for Tarantino’s next project.

    There was so much variety and so many times I was blown away. Clear and Present Danger was just excellent. I normally stay away from horror but I saw New Nightmare, from the Nightmare on Elm St series and was surprised at how solid of a film that was. I lucked into seeing Three Colors: Blue on video, cuz I may’ve been on a Juliette Binoche kick. I rented Blue, liked the music, but thought it was OK but not great. The person at the video store said White was better. I had no idea there was more than one. I just loved White. So funny and tragic. You never see emotions like that in American films. Then I lucked out cuz it was right before Red came out and that I was able to see in a theater. Talk about unseen emotions. Wow!

    Surprise of surprises for me was Quiz Show. I just sucked it one Saturday morning cuz I felt obligated to see it and even that blew me away. Something family familiar about the Van Doren family. I kinda went back and forth, still do, over what should’ve won best screenplay. Hearing it described, I thought Quiz Show shoulda been in best original, not adapted. I woulda put Shawshank over Gump. Red was just as high if not higher for me than Pulp Fiction. I did think moving the ending to the beginning was sort of the equivalent to moving the fullback up a yard in creating the wishbone offense out of the T formation, whereby revolutionizing the game with the advent of the triple option, so how could I not make Pulp #1?? Haha!

    What’s crazy to me is that Death and the Maiden got shut out of nomination contention. That’s right, Death and the freckin’ Maiden isn’t even a footnote to the magnificent year in film that was 1994. Maybe it needed more than time than the end of the year award platform. I don’t remember any Polanksi backlash then. I do remember talk of Linda Fiorentino possibly getting an Oscar nom for The Last Seduction, yes, ’94 as well, but I think it was shown first on cable or ppv for a hot second before going into theaters but it was still DQ’d from Academy consideration.

    But this year, what do we got? I feel like we should be waist deep in creative work inspired by such a wide range of quality and originality from the hey day of dependents, independents and studio films that launched during their formative years but the best we can do are remakes, sequels and franchise installments. Not to say Marvel films aren’t good or that John Wick 3 may be all that, I did in fact mention an installment earlier in this post but it’s not like we’ve got Shallow Grave and Once Were Warriors waiting in the wings to be released cuz the calendar’s so filled they have to sit on the tarmac for 6 months waiting for their turn to take off.

    That’s part of what makes me feel so defeated by AT&T and Disney. Deepest pockets and widest potential release mechanism at their disposal but they just choose to fire their workforce then shrink back production as a means of cutting costs and minimizing risk. I wonder could they make a film about a Hollywood studio exec who develops agoraphobia and is too afraid to leave his mansion to even walk to the mailbox to pick up $10 million dollar bonus, much less make a movie, out of fear that they’ll not longer get that $10 million dollar bonus. I doubt most people would find it at all believable that leaders of such huge corporations could be so spineless. How sad that you could actually shoot the film as a documentary.

  21. Triple Option says:

    leahnz wrote:

    re speed, i so miss those solid, actually-somewhat-plausible real-world mid-level action movies”

    When I first heard about Speed, it sounded so dumb and implausible. I’d ridden buses in LA and wondered if one would explode if it went OVER 50 mph, cuz those drivers never approached that. But there was zero effort suspending disbelief, bridge jumping aside. Although as unnecessary as it was in terms of excitement, it did call for something OTT cuz otherwise it may’ve seemed too easy, in a way.

    Is there anything fun like that on the horizon??

  22. Sideshow Bill says:

    Hcat says:
    May 17, 2019 at 8:55 am
    Is there room to continue or did they seem to give it a sense of finality?


    Ends on another cliffhanger. Count on part 4


  23. movieman says:


    3,850 $22,670,000

    — / $5,888
    $22,670,000 / 1

    Buena Vista

    4,220 $7,371,000

    +115.7% / $1,747
    $748,765,870 / 22

    Warner Bros.

    4,248 $6,260,000

    +130.1% / $1,474
    $75,446,846 / 8


    3,267 $2,520,000

    — / $771
    $2,520,000 / 1

    United Artists Releasing

    3,077 $1,813,050

    +127.7% / $589
    $18,877,774 / 8

  24. Hcat says:

    TO, loved that post. And I fully concede the second half of the year was an embarrassment of riches, i has forgot the colors trilogy was that year. Also I would rank Bullets over Broadway as Allen’s best film of that decade, and the next and the two after that. And 94 had my two favorite comfort films with Nobofys Fool and Little Women.

    Serg, you make some good points about the business model (though I think Dumbo, Lone Ranger, and that last fantastic Beasts movie undercut what you are saying). And I was simply putting my personal preferences as logic. But staring down the next few weekends isn’t Rocketman and Wick more exciting prospects than Alladin and Dark Phoenix?

  25. movieman says:

    May 17-19, 2019

    1 N John Wick: Chapter 3 – Parabellum LG/S $57,025,000 – 3,850 – $14,812 $57,025,000 – 1

    2 1 Avengers: Endgame BV $29,411,000 -53.5% 4,220 -442 $6,969 $770,805,870 $356 4

    3 2 Pokemon Detective Pikachu WB $24,815,000 -54.4% 4,248 +46 $5,842 $94,001,846 $150 2

    4 N A Dog’s Journey Uni. $8,000,000 – 3,267 – $2,449 $8,000,000 – 1

    5 3 The Hustle UAR $6,080,788 -53.3% 3,077 +70 $1,976 $23,145,512 – 2

  26. palmtree says:

    Never saw a John Wick movie until recently. But I love it now. They did this the right way, believing in a franchise and a star and now they have a legit hit on their hands. Well done.

  27. Glamourboy says:

    I tried the first John Wick but gave up after the first 30 seemed to wallow in every cheap action film cliche and as much as I’d love me some Keanu Reeves on the side, he is a big black movie void..always seeming to try and do his best impression of being a human….It is distressing to me that everyone is forgetting what a horrible actor he is.

  28. Amblinman says:

    “It is distressing to me that everyone is forgetting what a horrible actor he is.”

    He is one of the best physical performers of his generation. He can’t say words but Reeves has a movie star physicality that’s perfect for this stuff.

  29. Pete B. says:

    “It is distressing to me that everyone is forgetting what a horrible actor he is.”

    Yep, he sucks. That’s why he’s had a 35 year career so far and been in almost a hundred films.

    John Wick 3 was great. I didn’t think 2 was as good as the 1st, but 3 recaptured the magic. I was wincing from some of those stunts. And the world of The Continental continues to expand.

  30. palmtree says:

    Keanu has done it all including respectable things like an acclaimed performance as Hamlet on stage. He may not be your cup of tea, but he’s not horrible. And on top of that, he’s a really decent guy, almost the Platonic ideal of movie stars.

  31. movieman says:

    I thought “John Wick” was pretty good (remember saying that it was a movie I would have loved when I was 25).
    But thought “JW 2” was pretty f****ing awesome.
    Maybe my expectations were too high, but I was a trifle let down by #3.
    The first half hour is fantastic, but then it seemed like I was watching the same (beautifully choreographed/gorgeously shot) fight scene ad infinitum.
    Copious grace notes (Anjelica Huston; bow) scattered throughout, though, and I’ll always love Keanu.

    P.S.= The openings for “Dog’s Journey” and “Sun is Also a Star” were pathetic.
    “Journey” opened $10-million below the original (2 1/2 years ago)?
    And “Sun”–even w/ WB marketing muscle–opened (a lot) lower than (gasp) “After.”
    For shame.
    Have a feeling that “Booksmart” will do 90% of its biz in “major markets,” and zilch in flyover states like mine.
    “Aladdin” will do well enough (better than “Dumbo;” considerably less than previous Disney live-action do-overs of their animated classics), but I have no idea how big (or not) “Brightburn” will perform.
    Am I the only one who thinks that May 31st’s releases (“Rocketman,” “Ma,” “Godzilla 2”) should have been swapped places with the Memorial Day weekend releases?

  32. leahnz says:

    ‘booksmart’ is so awesome i’m so excited to see it again but i don’t think it’s released here for like another month, trying to keep my powder dry.

    ETA fixed like 6 typos in the above i was so excited whilst typing i fucked it up

  33. Glamourboy says:

    Pete B….being in a hundred films and being in the business for 35 years is no measure of quality. Hell, Lindsay Lohan has been in the business for over 20 years and it doesn’t make it Jessica Tandy. He has been nominated for zero oscars (out of a hundred films), but has been nominated for 6 Razzies…one more than Paris Hilton. Plus…rewatch Dracula.

  34. Amblinman says:

    Star Wars fans can sleep tight tonight.

    They still have a couple of years before those two dorks ruin that dopey franchise.

  35. Pete B. says:

    GB, I watch the 1992 Dracula every Halloween.

  36. Glamourboy says:

    Pete B…then you know. I met an actor who regularly screens Dracula at his house just to laugh at Keanu’s performance. Then again, his performance in Little Buddha is a howler too.

  37. Pete B. says:

    Sounds like you have a bug up your ass regarding Mr. Reeves.

  38. Glamourboy says:

    Pete B….the dude has won 6 Razzie Awards, six years of giving the worst male performance of that year. One year it was for two of his movies. I’m clearly not the only one that feels this way.

  39. Glamourboy says:

    Palmtree….you mentioned his ‘acclaimed’ performance as Hamlet. Here’s the first review I found….

    “Hamlet is, quite simply, one of the most ballyhooed stage events in Winnipeg history. And during the play’s five-week rehearsal period, the star (Reeves) who fell to earth in the Manitoba capital seemed to charm everyone, from crew members to people on the street. They said he is friendly, humble, accessible, hardworking. And, above all, brave to take on Hamlet. They worried about him, as if he were attempting a daredevil stunt. How on earth would he do it? How would he remember all those lines? Well, he did remember his lines. In fact, at times he recited them. Very quickly, like a schoolboy dying to get to the end. Perhaps it was just opening-night nerves, but Reeves raced through some lines at such a clip that the sense was almost unintelligible. He whipped through the soliloquies, the signature tunes of Hamlet, as if they were air-guitar solos. Locked into Shakespeare’s iambic pentameter, he surfed from one consonant to the next, faster and faster. He rode the play as if it were wired to blow up below a certain speed.”

  40. Amblinman says:

    “I’m not the only one who feels this way.”


  41. Stella's Boy says:

    Do we take the Razzies seriously now? I thought they were basically a dude in his basement. “But the Razzies” is an interesting defense of your argument. Sure not everyone is a Keanu fan, but I can’t imagine hating him so much, and he is perfectly cast as John Wick. Perfect match of actor and role. I’ve always liked Keanu. He has a goofy charm and he is also a convincing badass and easy to root for. But hey different strokes.

    My sisters and I see one or two movies a year, and they picked The Intruder. Honestly I kind of liked it. It’s not a good movie per se, but it reminded me of some of the sleazy thrillers of the ’80s and ’90s. Quaid seems to be enjoying himself and is fun. And while it’s half-baked there’s an interesting kernel of an idea in it about old white people lashing out when they believe what is rightfully there’s is taken from them by younger, non-white people.

    The series finale certainly did nothing to redeem the final season of GoT. I didn’t really like any of it. SPOILERS follow. Captured after battle and you are shown no mercy, your throat slit for backing Cersei. But kill the queen and your throat stays un-slit? The dragon finds his dead master and leaves Jon alone to burn the iron throne? Pacing issues and so much boring talk and so many rehashed arguments. Too much time with dull nitwit Jon Snow. Bran the Broken? OK then. Women get hosed again. Arya is Columbus? Disappointing finale to a disappointing season. So I guess that’s fitting.

  42. Hcat says:

    I’m fine with someone not liking Keanu and agree that watching Dracula probably led to Sofia Coppola saying “Dad, you really need to take more care when it comes to casting.” But am not really accepting the Razzies as a legitimate point of reference. Nor the comparision to Lindsay Lohan or Hilton. There is now way you can claim that Lohan was in the film business for 20 years, she clearly washed out after ten with only a hit or two in that whole time, since then its been cameo’s where she is the punchline. Hilton, c’mon has she ever even been in a studio film?

    Keanu is great at what he does, and is a commanding screen presence. Sure, Oscars seem to be out of his grasp but they are hardly the only measure of a movie star.

    Plus he gets point in my book for not simply taking the easy way and snapping up an NCIS or 24 type television series after The Day the Earth Stood Still made clear any A-list stardom had passed.

  43. amblinman says:


    Mostly enjoyed, loved a couple of bits.

    First: I DID NOT KNOW THAT WAS MARC DECASCOS UNTIL AFTER THE MOVIE. Motherfucker this better get him some work. The Halle Berry portion is a complete mystery to me. It added so much nothing to the proceedings other than cool attack dog stuff. I like these films but their story arc is bizarre to me. Case in point: it feels like this chapter should have been the middle movie, and the next movie should have been the 3rd. I have no clue why John Wick 2 exists now. I’m going to see chapter 4 when it releases but I’m a little disappointed in the filmmakers. They seemed to grasp that running a tight, efficient ship was the way to go. Now most of the 2nd and 3rd movie feel like filler. Also, the films have become increasingly meta as they’ve needed bigger, more ridiculous action set piecees. I hope the next film isn’t just a Three Stooges movie with gunshots to the head.

  44. Sideshow Bill says:

    This Keanu bashing WILL NOT STAND!!!!

    I love the guy. Have since I saw River’s Edge in high school. He is a bad actor…IN THE WRONG ROLES. Coppola never should have cast him in Dracula. But would you turn that role down? Still a great movie though.

    Keanu is an actor with, yea, limited range and when he’s matched with the right material he’s wonderful. He’s made a lot of bad movies and been in roles that he didn’t succeed at but the man needs to work, for one thing. And two, he’s tried to stretch. I give him points for being ambitious.

    And yea, the Razzies are fucking trash. Mean-spirited, pompous shit and I fucking hate them. They think they’re cute and precocious but they are just shit.

    I’m not saying anything about GOT other than I liked it. I’m out of energy for that fight. It’s over. Let’s move on to the next thing we live then hate.

  45. Stella's Boy says:

    But you said more than that. I for one never loved then hated GoT so not sure about all that or the idea that people can’t like a show overall but dislike the final season.

  46. Hcat says:

    “Let’s move on to the next thing we love then hate.”

    Hey, look over there. A Deadwood Finale!

  47. Stella's Boy says:

    Pfft no way the Deadwood movie is going to be great. I mean, it has to be great. Right?

  48. amblinman says:

    Anyone who watched all 3 seasons of Deadwood that has a specific idea of what its “proper” ending should look like didn’t pay attention to a single minute of those three seasons. Milch is NUTS. Just enjoy the profanity and personalities.

    Only thing that could possibly happen to make me hate the Deadwood movie is if they kill Swearengen within the first 5 minutes.

  49. Hcat says:

    I don’t think they will kill Hearst, how could they possibly, I mean I would love to see him die, even just seeing him in the trailer brought waves of revulsion back to me, and I watched the show a decade ago, but that would be a little too perfect and happy?

    I mean they certainly can’t because he was a real person and it didn’t happen that way but I can’t remember a television character I more wanted to see die. Well maybe Urkel.

  50. amblinman says:

    I’d rather see Hearst defeated. Humiliated. He wins, ultimately, but I’ll take one small moment of grace.

  51. Hcat says:

    I suppose he can live. But I would like a scene where he buys a sled for his son.

  52. palmtree says:

    Glamour…that’s it? Well if you can find one negative review, I can certainly find positive ones to counter. How about this one:

    Keanu Reeves I’m Sorry I Doubted You from The Telegraph

    And for the record, it was noted that Keanu turned down Speed 2 and its $11 million payday to do Hamlet. Maybe you hate the results, but damn, that’s a solid actor right there in my book.

  53. Sideshow Bill says:

    Stella, you can like a show but hate the finale but most of the complaints I’m seeing aren’t fair: GRRM failed the show runners just as much as they made some poor decisions. They were written into a corner, told how it ended and then had to figure out to get there. I mostly enjoyed it but it would have been hard for anyone. D & D didn’t just become bad writers overnight.

    And if GRRM did tell them how he planned to end it then logically he decided who won the throne. Why is he being let off the hook? It just irks me.

    I thought the ending was fine. I think most characters ended up where they deserved to be (no spoilers). I disagree that it was overtly sexist but I also don’t see it from a female perspective so my opinion there is surely open to persuasion.

    I’m satisfied. It’s over. I’m in the minority but whatever. Art would be incredibly dull if it always ended exactly how we each wanted.

  54. Stella's Boy says:

    Oh I know the GoT discourse is pretty toxic. Remake the entire final season! Quit complaining you dumb entitled whiner! And yeah endings are hard. Never going to please everyone. I’m with you I’m glad it’s over (though I’m sure the think pieces are far from finished).

  55. palmtree says:

    I don’t blame D&D for bad writing so much as not letting others into the writer’s room. They continued to control the writing even when their enthusiasm and commitment to the show was waning. That’s why they wanted to end the show in truncated seasons, so they could move and do Star Wars or whatever else they perceived was better.

    They could have given the mantle to someone who would have furthered the show into 2 full seasons or even 3 or 4 and given us an ending the show deserved and that HBO wanted. Instead, they selfishly held it close and ruined it.

  56. palmtree says:

    And to be clear, by “others in the writer’s room” I mean new showrunners.

    And also, I mean women. If you’re gonna have a major female character undergo a major late series 180, wouldn’t it be nice to have a woman in the room to help with making that arc work?

  57. Pete B. says:

    I agree with Amblinman, Mark Decascos stole the show in Parabellum. It was fun seeing him on the big screen again, since most of his stuff has been TV or direct to DVD. Last time I can recall him kicking butt in a theater was back in 2001’s Brotherhood of the Wolf.

  58. Hcat says:

    I was rewatching the first John Wick this weekend and thought I could totally watch a directors cut of this where Keanu just plays with the puppy and heals.

  59. Triple Option says:

    Thanks, Hcat.


    I thought I had seen John Wick 2 on cable/video/vod whatever a while back but in watching Wick 3 I realized I had not.

    I thought the first one was fine but I can’t remember too much of it. I knew it was violent but holy crap #3 was Vi-Lent! I’m really not complaining but I’m a little surprised it didn’t get flagged w/an NC-17 or what would’ve been an X back in the day. In one sense, there wasn’t one death that was beyond slasher film heinous but would it really have ruined the integrity of the film if say in one particular scene there was only 40 heads getting blown off instead of the 4 dozen they showed?

    It was excessive by design which made it in some sense a bit more digestible but I shouldn’t sit watching a movie feeling the same thing when the dentist leaves the room trying to X-Ray my molars for the 3rd time to get the right angle…”This can’t be good for me.”

    When Keanu is fighting those carbon copy dudes in the 2nd Matrix, I think they were trying to show how relentless the attack was. Though it didn’t take long before it got pretty boring. Wick 3 I thought did a better job of showing the impossible nature of what he or they were up against but it was more like a video game, so then it got to a point where it didn’t seem that difficult but more like watching someone who’s learned a pattern.

    I don’t know where or how to draw the line. It’s not like it started out fine and then went on to become excessive. The “gah!” shots to the dome clicked in pretty quick. I remember the first one being violent and it’s not like I wanted to tap out at any point but even before Halle Barry hit the screen I wondered what I had signed up for. There was another ultra violent film I saw this year, Hotel Mumbai, where the heads were being blown off like dandelion chafe. Being based on real events made it even harder to watch. Which, undoubtedly was part of the filmmakers’ intention. What I wonder is every film coming out gonna have to justify graphic loss of life to stay competitive?

    Again, I’m not complaining but wondering aloud if anyone else is wondering if we’re headed for a new kind of arms race in film? I get that movies have always been violent, at least the past 50 years since Bonnie & Clyde and Death Wish and cop Clint Eastwood came on the scene, but should there be any cause for concern? I get a lot of people, probably most, of Gen X, Y and late Boomers can say, “I watched violent films as a kid, didn’t bother me.” But this was when we still had Saturday morning cartoons, Mr Rogers and little league games without pro scouts showing up.
    I remember Ebert giving The Raid a scathing review, at least cursing the violence of the film and finding it unnecessary. I actually loved The Raid but couldn’t argue that it wasn’t exceedingly violent. But every once in a while you’d have a Robocop and then there was a Rambo installment with an uncountable body pile up and then The Raid. I’m a little concerned how we’re going from only seeing these types of films maybe every 5-6 years to seeing one of these every other month.

  60. movieman says:

    John Wick will be back in exactly two years and a day.

    Lionsgate announced Monday that it has scheduled “John Wick 4” for May 21, 2021. The studio made the announcement via a text message to fans: “You have served. You will be of service. John Wick: Chapter 4 is coming – May 21, 2021.”

    “John Wick 4” is the second title to land on May 21, 2021. It joins Warner Bros.’ “DC Super Pets” on the date.

  61. Stella's Boy says:

    Interesting post Triple Option. The other day I came across a somewhat heated but mostly respectful and intriguing back-and-forth about gun violence in movies in general and specifically the John Wick movies and whether or not they are gun porn. Defenders (who vastly outnumbered the other side) said hey they are just movies and they aren’t in any way realistic and movies don’t cause violence, and some said you could read the movies as being pro-gun control. The main detractor said he worried about how gun violence and guns are portrayed in JW and other Hollywood movies and if that’s at odds with gun control arguments that many on the left and in the industry support. I found it to be a compelling discussion though it was incredibly one-sided. I definitely have concerns about Hollywood glamorizing gun violence. Sometimes I do see a movie and think wow that’s nothing but gun porn and that makes me feel a little icky but I also don’t think violent movies cause violent behavior.

  62. Hcat says:

    TO, I’ve been thinking about that as well, the brain splatter has certainly gotten more common (though I don’t know about every other month unless I am missing a lot of movies). I’m not one for escalating gore just for the sake of it, does it really add to the aesthetic of the scene that instead of just a simple head shot every thing results in a Jackson Pollock splatter of viscera on the wall with every kill?

    I look at a future project like Mel Gibson’s remake of The Wild Bunch with apprehension. Peckinpah used the blood and guts to show the gruesomeness of the violence, it wasn’t fun or cathartic, it was dangerous. Gibson has always seemed a little more gleeful in his depictions of slaughter, almost a mad scientist interest in how to show a body can be unraveled.

  63. Stella's Boy says:

    Agreed. Gibson is a little sadistic. Very apprehensive about him directing The Wild Bunch.

    JW3 is fine. No spoilers. I enjoyed myself for the most part. I love Keanu in the role and the supporting cast is strong. Mark Dacascos is great. There are some really inventive and thrilling set pieces. It has a healthy sense of humor. It was definitely worth the $5 Tuesday price. But it’s also a little stale. There are only so many ways to shoot dudes in the head. The knife play was refreshing. Whereas I initially felt exhilaration and awe, after some of the gunplay in part 3 I just felt weary. Some of the shine has worn off. And there is a whole lot of gun fetishization. Wick and some of those other guys are more turned on by guns than people. I’m curious where they go from here. Hope they have a few fresh ideas up their sleeve.

  64. Hcat says:

    Just a thought but it would not be outside the realm of possibility for Ms. Wick to have been drugged and kidnapped in an elaborate plot to blackmail John into a job only to have it interrupted by the Rampage? They can be reunited at the end of part 6?

  65. Stella's Boy says:

    Sure why not. And we need the backstory on Halle Berry and her dogs (her role was smaller than I expected). More on Under the Table and Over the Table. Plus the Adjudicators. That could be its own spinoff. Hey isn’t there a TV series happening? When is that supposed to air?

  66. Bulldog68 says:

    Wick 4: While bringing a criminal to justice, Denzel’s Equalizer character inadvertently causes the death of Liam Neeson’s Taken’s daughter. Fed with misinformation Neeson seeks revenge and in his quest for justice, during a car chase he runs over Wick’s new French bulldog.

  67. Hcat says:

    Add Jack Reacher and I’m there.

    I just finished watching Equilizer 2 last night. Pretty ho hum but sap that I am I teared up white the last scene with Sammy the old man. If They continue it I am on board though. Will follow Washington anywhere.

  68. palmtree says:

    Oh man, Taken + Wick + Reacher + Equalizer = new cinematic universe…the Revengers.

    Those reviews of Once Upon a Time in Hollywood are pretty bonkers. I’m way more intrigued than I was before, even if it sounds…not great.

  69. movieman says:

    I was already onboard for “Once Upon a Time…,” Palm.
    The reviews–even the mixed ones–practically had me weeping in joyful anticipation.
    It sounds like “The Movie” I’ve been dreaming about since, well, 1969.
    (Late) July can’t come soon enough.

  70. palmtree says:

    Funny, I felt pretty indifferent even after that first trailer, and I consider myself a QT fan. But now, I can’t wait to see what so many people seem to hate and what he so desperately wants to prevent spoilers from.

  71. Bulldog68 says:

    The Revengers. Love it. Add in Jodi Foster’s The Brave One character, Uma Thurman’s Kill Bill, the Dragon Tattoo femme fatale, hell, Charlize Theron’s Atomic Blonde, and you got yourself a bloodbath.

  72. palmtree says:

    “and you got yourself a bloodbath.”

    LOL, was that a Carl Weathers reference?

  73. Bulldog68 says:

    Not familiar with the Weathers reference Palmtree.

  74. amblinman says:

    GREAT post, Triple Option!

    My own take:

    – The precision and extremism of the violence is what places Wick apart from the field. It’s the series own version of branding. I don’t know that this would lend itself to other films. Wick looks different from all other popular genre fare now because it *looks* different.

    – I noticed the filmmakers tried to address the unspoken audience fatigue by having the characters hint at how exhausting the whole thing was, and by setting up the final act as a video game; with levels and bosses. I don’t know that they were totally successful, but I’ll say this: I”m more interested in 4 out of finishing the series than I am in pure anticipation. Like, I went NUTS looking forward to 3.

  75. palmtree says:

    Bull, he had a catchphrase on Arrested Development where he would list a bunch of ingredients and then say that if you added them up, “you got a stew going.” Not funny when I explain it out of context, but hilarious in context.

  76. Hcat says:

    Weathers was perfect on AD. I never understood why he wasn’t a bigger star (other than the color of his skin), he was handsome, charismatic, really he could do everything that The Rock is doing now. Shame nobody realized the potential.

    I always think back to his small role in Semi-Tough where he argues that his team was going to win the game because his new age nonsense was superior to Reynolds new age nonsense “you think your gonna come at us with that triangle shit?” It always brings a smile to my face.

  77. Stella's Boy says:

    Agreed Weathers is so wonderful on AD. The catchphrase is hilarious and isn’t he always hungry and angling for free food?

    Can’t say I care much about Once Upon a Time in Hollywood save for seeing two of my favorite actors, Timothy Olyphant and Michael Madsen, on the big screen. Far more interested in Parasite and The Lighthouse and some of the other Cannes titles.

    Thrilled that The Last Drive-In got renewed. It has been a total blast. I’ve seen many movies for the first time and Joe Bob is a fountain of knowledge. Great show.

    I think we feel much the same way amblinman. I was incredibly excited about seeing JW3 and now it’s like OK I need to see them all so I might as well see JW4 (and really how likely is that the end of the series?).

  78. Hcat says:

    Racking my brain, while I can find numerous instances of sequels being better I can’t think of a series where the third entry was the best (maybe the original Apes? I know people will bring up Potter but I find the first much more magical).

  79. Stella's Boy says:

    Someday we’ll be saying Angel Has Fallen is the best entry in that series. For serious though, Thor: Ragnarok? I looked at a list of the best part threes and I didn’t see much if anything that I’d label the best in the series. Some horror fans claim they like Friday the 13th Part 3 and Nightmare on Elm Street 3 the best.

  80. Mostly Lurking says:

    Off the top of my head the third movie that many think of as the best in a series is Goldfinger.

  81. Bulldog68 says:

    I’d argue for Azkaban, Thor:Ragnarok, Return of the King, and Toy Story just had that emotional wallop in the end that made it my favourite of the series. Oh, almost forgot, Logan.

  82. Mostly Lurking says:

    Isn’t the third Bourne movie held in pretty high regard (I think it’s Ultimatum but can’t recall for sure? Also, although I still prefer the original there are alot of Christmas Vacation fans out there.

  83. Stella's Boy says:

    Before Midnight? I’ve seen and love the first two and am embarrassed to admit I still haven’t seen it.

  84. Hcat says:

    Yup, would agree with Logan and Ragnarok, though I had problems with both given that the earlier films were so lackluster they sort of win by default.

    I prefer the second Bourne and the first Rings, but could certainly be in the minority.

    And speaking of thirds, and I suppose this counts?, I just saw the new Terminator trailer, and it really did nothing for me. Was pumped to have Hamilton back, but it didn’t send the same shiver as seeing Jamie Lee Curtis in the Halloween trailer last year. Still have high hopes for the entry.

  85. Mostly Lurking says:

    Although it’s a stretch to call it the third in a series, Infinity War is officially the third Avengers movie and gets alot of love as the best of the bunch (I personally prefer Endgame).

    Also, are we limited to just third in a series or third and beyond? If anything beyond the second entry qualifies, I’d put any of MI:4-6 as superior to the first three.

  86. Sideshow Bill says:

    Thor: Ragnarok might be my favorite MCU movie overall

    Friday the 13th part 3, minus the crappy 3D ruining how it looks, is one of the best pure slasher movies ever I think. But I rank 2 and 4 above it. As if it matters lol

    And I prefer Fellowship over TTY and ROTK by a LOT.

  87. Hcat says:

    Not limited by anything, just trying to make conversation. And while I am excited to see Wick3, I often find a pattern where the third is often a victory lap or feels like a greatest hits album. That was certainly the case with Bourne, liked the third one but it wasn’t the surprising jolt the first one was, or the twirling rollercoaster of the second. The third was an effective thriller but all the beats it hit had already been done.

    and while no one else might agree but Tokyo Drift was better than the first two entries. I prefer Black to Walker any day of the week.

  88. Mostly Lurking says:

    On Bourne I think I mixed up the third and the second (not the names but the story and how they were received). I agree with Toy Story 3 and am still miffed that they couldn’t leave well enough alone and keep to one of the most fitting endings of all time.

  89. Hcat says:

    I’m with you on Fellowship Bill, I absolutely love the chase on horseback through the woods. It is shot and cut so perfectly, even though I have seen it multiple times I never think they are going to make it.

  90. Sideshow Bill says:

    I remembering feeling rapturous joy while seeing Fellowship. It’s not something that happens often. The other 2 films are great but they can’t capture that first thrill of finally seeing this stuff brought to life.

    And the fall of Boromir gets me every time.

  91. Hcat says:

    ‘And the fall of Boromir gets me every time.’

    Sure, when the Boromiral leaves change its just magnificent!

  92. palmtree says:

    LOL, I love a good pun, and bad puns are even better.

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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