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Film Blog Water Cooler

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    More Reason to Hate the Ewoks? Film Blog Water Cooler 8/13/10

    Everyone knows merchandising came into play with the development of "Return of the Jedi." Sure, the official reason for the Ewoks had to do with George Lucas wanting an "Avatar"-like battle between a primitive race and the technologically advanced Empire, but many believe the fact the little creatures look exactly like Teddy bears is completely motivated by the ease of turning them into plush toys for the kids. Now via an LA Times interview with original "Star Wars" producer Gary Kurtz, who quit the franchise over plot disagreements in the early stages of "Jedi," it's also revealed that toy line concerns kept the end of the trilogy as uplifti...

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    Does Age Matter for Movie Reviewers? Film Blog Water Cooler 8/12/10

    Is the 11-year-old critic obnoxious or unwelcome? That's a big debate this week following the circulation of a clip from CBS' "The Early Show" in which Emmy-winning preteen reviewer "Lights Camera Jackson" (aka Jackson Murphy) gives his opinion on "Inception," "Ramona and Beezus" and "Salt." Many people are having issue with the kid's opinion of the Christopher Nolan pic just because it's against their own. Others seem to find it inappropriate for a little boy to be a critic. I think he's no more annoying than most TV news-based movie reviewers, though it's a little creepy how mature and lively he is. This is beyond precociousness. I honestly...

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    Is "Inception" Based On a Comic Book? Film Blog Water Cooler 8/3/10

    Did Christopher Nolan spend too much time in the comic book store researching for his Batman films and accidentally pilfer a plot from an issue of "Uncle Scrooge"? That's the question of the day, which reminds me of the time the Internet thought too much about whether the Wayans brothers movie "Litt...

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    Remake of "Deep Blue Sea" Isn't What You Think. Film Blog Water Cooler 8/2/10

    Here's one for the people who only read headlines: reports today of a remake of "The Deep Blue Sea," a 1955 Anatole Litvak drama starring Vivien Leigh, triggered a number of confused cries from fans of "Deep Blue Sea," the 1999 Renny Harlin sci-fi thriller about smart sharks who kill a team of scientists. It all began with a Daily Mail article announcing that Rachel Weisz is in "advanced talks" for the lead role in a new film adapted from the original Terence Rattigan play, upon which Litvak's film was also based (Rattigan also wrote the screenplay himself). Terence Davies ("The House of Mirth") will write and direct this version, which will ...

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    "Total Recall" Being Recalled for a Remake. Film Blog Water Cooler 7/29/2010

    "Total Recall" has a few great lines in it, but mostly I remember the less articulate things that come out of Arnold Schwarzenegger's mouth. All those grunts and arrrrrrrrghs. Could anyone else do as good a job playing that nightmare scene in which Douglas Quaid/Hauser ends up without oxygen on Mars and his eyes bulge out of his skull like a Simpson as he screams in agony? I guess we'll see when Sony releases the long-threatened remake of Paul Verhoeven's 1991 sci-fi hit. The studio has tapped "Salt" screenwriter Kurt Wimmer, who hopefully will finally bring back some of that "Gun Kata" stuff he wrote into "Equilibrium," and director Len Wise...

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    "Titanic II" is No Longer Just a Bad Joke. Film Blog Water Cooler 7/28/10

    Thanks to the Internet, we've seen plenty of fake posters and trailers for non-existent sequels to James Cameron's "Titanic" (happy belated 100th birthday to Gloria Stuart, by the way). Now thanks to the existence of The Asylum, the production company that brought us "Transmorphers," "The Da Vinci Treasure" and "Snakes on a Train," we have the chance to see an actual film called "Titanic II." Of course, it's not officially linked to the 1997 blockbuster as a sequel or otherwise. The title actually refers to the name of a new ocean liner that's been built to honor the original ship and will make its maiden voyage on the 100th anniversary of th...

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    Daniel Craig Confirmed for "The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo" Remake. Film Blog Water Cooler 7/26/10

    I totally thought Daniel Craig was already fully attached to the English-language version of "The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo." Enough that while watching the original Swedish adaptation I pictured Craig as I was looking at Michael Nyqvist. That was weeks ago. I guess he was merely in talks for the ...

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    Guillermo Del Toro Left "The Hobbit" for This? Film Blog Water Cooler 7/22/10

    The first day of Comic-Con 2010 is not yet over, but already we've heard the most shocking fanboy news of the whole event: Guillermo del Toro will remake/reboot "The Haunted Mansion." In 3D, of course. You may slightly recall the 2003 attempt at adapting the Disneyland attraction, which somehow was expected to capitalize on the success of the "Pirates of the Caribbean" franchise. Well, I guess this isn't as WTF as if Disney had hired Werner Herzog for a "Country Bears" redo, though the Tweets and bloggery out of San Diego today are treating this, justifiably, as a truly bizarre turn of events. After all, until a couple months ago Del Toro was...

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    Girls, Baptists and Hollywood Invade Comic-Con. Film Blog Water Cooler 7/21/10

    I've never been to Comic-Con, and I really shouldn't care much about it since it's just a big hype machine and there's no place at Spout for fueling that buzz and promotional junk. However, I'd be lying if I said I don't get a little bit excited this time of year. I know much of what's announced and teased at SDCC won't end up in front of my eyes for months if not years to come, but I'm nevertheless curious if Edgar Wright will reveal he's doing "Ant-Man" next and inform us who he's already cast in the lead role. And I'm also eager to see that first bootlegged clip of the surprise footage of "The Adventures of Tintin: The Secret of the Unicor...

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    "Inception" Interpretations. Film Blog Water Cooler 7/20/10

    It's been a few days since "Inception" came out, and spoiler-friendly discussions are occurring all over the film blogosphere regarding interpretations of and theories about the movie's plot. We posted our own conversation prompt, including discussion questions, when it opened on Friday. At the time I had no definite answer or belief in any single explanation about the ending or much of what gets us there. Since then I've seen "Inception" a second time, and I'm still not certain which reading I accept as either the best analysis or even a favorite possibility, though I'm especially down with the idea that for the part of Ariadne (Ellen Page),...

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