Films

Batman Got On My Nerves

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Anyone who argues that Batman (1989) was anything other than a steaming turd is trying to rewrite history. It was actually a pretty shitty movie, and it was largely acknowledged to be trashy and campy on purpose:

Hollywood's obsession with Batman began thirty years ago on June 23, 1989 when Tim Burton, Michael Keaton and Jack Nicholson showed doubters that The Dark Knight was worthy of the big screen. Batmanearned a massive $411.5 million globally, but faced a tough battle to the big screen that involved rejection from nearly every studio in Hollywood and its leading lady being re-cast at the last minute.

Batman has an origin story that begins in the most unassuming of places — with a twenty-something comic book geek attending college at Indiana University in Bloomington. In 1972, Michael Uslan landed on the radar of Sol Harrison, the vice president of DC Comics in New York, because the junior in college was teaching the world’s first-ever college accredited course on comic books.

“Sol said that what I was doing at Indiana was very innovative and good for the whole comic book industry," Uslan tells The Hollywood Reporter. “Sol and DC’s then President Carmine Infantino, flew me to New York and they offered me a job.” Uslan worked in New York in summers, and he was put on retainer while he was at Indiana.

At the time, DC Comics had been acquired by Warners Communications, a division of Warner Publishing. “The Warner Publishing brass, generally speaking, were not a bunch of happy campers that they owned a comic book company,” Uslan says. “They only saw value in Superman.”

In the following years, Uslan graduated from law school and cut his teeth in the film industry at United Artists. His time there prepared Uslan to make his dream of producing a dark and serious Batman movie a reality. His first stop: getting the film rights.

“The day came when I went back to Sol Harrison and said, 'Sol, I want to buy the rights to Batman,’” Uslan recalls.  “Sol was genuinely apoplectic. He was very fond of me, which I greatly appreciated. He said 'Michael, Michael for God’s sake don't do this. I don't want to see you lose all your money. Don’t you understand that after Batman went off the air on TV the brand became as dead as a dodo? Nobody’s interested in Batman anymore’ I countered with, ‘But Sol, nobody’s ever done a dark, serious Batman feature film. This is almost going to be like almost a new form of entertainment!’”

There was nothing dark or serious about Batman because, for all intents and purposes, Tim Burton was and still is a terrible filmmaker. I mean, go back and watch this, and then watch the one with poor Danny DeVito as a human penguin, and then get back to me about how these films should have been taken seriously. You could have put Adam West in these films and no one would have said a word.

Michael Keaton is a great actor, but he was largely wasted in these films. They were not “serious” in any sense of the word. They were expensive, exploitative, and copied elements from other films, such as Die Hard. If anything, send Bruce Willis fifty bucks. And, come on. If Jack Nicholson’s obituary mentions his role as the Joker, then you know something’s wrong.

Give me a break.

Slumming With Another Star Wars Movie

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Given all of the nonsense and negativity that surrounds starring in a Star Wars movie, this is kind of a surprise:

Keri Russell is headed to a galaxy far, far away.

Sources tell Variety that the “Felicity” alum is in early talks to join J.J. Abrams’ “Star Wars: Episode IX,” which Abrams is writing and directing. Russell and Abrams last collaborated on 2006’s “Mission: Impossible III.”

The role calls for action-heavy fight scenes. Russell has shown her ability to perform tough stunts in projects like FX’s “The Americans,” “Mission: Impossible,” and “Dawn of the Planet of the Apes.”

Abrams and Lucasfilm execs met with several actresses for the role in the past two months and settled on Russell right before the Fourth of July holiday. Abrams will likely cast two more actors by the time the film begins production at the end of the month. Daisy Ridley, John Boyega, Oscar Isaac, and Adam Driver are all expected to return.

I hope they give Russell something interesting to do, and I hope it's more along the lines of what they had Laura Dern do the last time they put a female character in their little money-making thing.

Freddie Mercury

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If Rami Malek can pull this off, he deserves an Oscar. He deserves ALL the awards.

I never thought that they could make a movie about Freddie Mercury because how the hell do you portray someone so iconic? How would you make a movie about David Bowie or Prince? Who on Earth could play those guys and not pale in comparison to what we had in real life? I don't think anyone has ever done Elvis justice, either.

The trailer is great, but this seems self-serving and bitchy:

Writer and producer Bryan Fuller is accusing 20th Century Fox of “hetero-washing” the story of Queen frontman Freddie Mercury in a new trailer and marketing materials for the biopic “Bohemian Rhapsody.”

“Anyone else mildly annoyed … that the #BohemianRhapsody trailer features gay/bi superstar Freddie Mercury flirting with and twirling with a woman but no indication of his love of men?” Fuller tweeted on Tuesday after the clip hit the web.

The footage shows actress Lucy Boynton staring longingly at star Rami Malek as Mercury, also leaping into his arms. Boynton plays Mary Austin, who some credit as Mercury’s muse but is not well known in pop culture. The trailer also features a young man coming on to Malek’s Mercury in a recording studio, but it’s blink-and-miss.

You can't judge a movie based on watching the trailer, but why should that stop anyone, right? Who knows what the film really deals with? And, honestly, this could be one of the greatest performances ever if Malek can convince people he's Freddie. Enjoy it! Don't bitch at it.

Carl's Jr is a Stupid Company

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Apparently, there's no fun allowed anywhere, and whoever is running things at Carl's Jr. is an idiot:

Fast food restaurant chain Carl's Jr. is getting in on the hype for Steven Spielberg's latest movie, Ready Player One.

On Sunday, Carl's Jr. tweeted that it would be changing the name of its charbroiled sliders to "SpielBurgers," in honor of the director and his upcoming film. "Spielberg hasn’t signed off yet, but we assume he’s cool with it," the company wrote.

A Carl's Jr. representative on Tuesday told The Hollywood Reporter, "SpielBurgers are not a menu item at Carl’s Jr. locations. This was a social stunt from the brand to try and get the attention of Spielberg and his team to celebrate the launch of Ready Player One."

You don't go public with something like this unless you have a marketing deal in place. Did they think they were going to shame Steven Spielberg into doing something like this?

Morons.