Everything Else, TGITDNMAR — December 14, 2011 at 2:48 pm

TGITDNMAR (12/14/11)


It’s that time again for TGITDNMAR, which (obviously) stands for Thank God It’s The Day New Movies Are Released.

Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows
Three wide releases this weekend, and all three sequels.  Who says Hollywood has no more original stories?  Still, I can’t get the memory of two weeks ago out of my head, when there was not a single new release given a wide distribution.  You’re  telling me that not a single one of these three couldn’t or wouldn’t have wanted to take an easy #1 at the box office that weekend, instead opting to battle it out now?

Anyway, this one.  I can’t say that I’ve done extensive research, but I don’t know a single person that is excited for the Holmes sequel.  For some reason, it feels like the first one was made 18 years ago instead of two; I feel like I should recall a whole hell of a lot more of that 2009 edition, though to be fair, I only saw it the once.  Making matters no better is the utterly ‘blah’ trailer for this one, filled with way too much action and gunplay for what’s supposed to be a detective story (right?!?) and (groan) Holmes dolled up in drag as a disguise.  Wicky wicky Wild Wild?

Still, it’s got Noomi vamping it up, and it’s not like Robert Downey, Jr. got terrible himself just because Iron Man 2 was a dud.  I have a little faith that it will be quality, just not a lot of interest either way.

Dylan’s Chance of Viewing (in the theater): 46%

Mission Impossible: Ghost Protocol
As pointed out by me on a previous LAMBcast, how many times does this Hunt guy have to prove himself to be on the right side of IMF?  Will he still be suspected of being a terrorist when MI:6 comes out (haha, as if Cruise will still be in the series by then)?

All of the hype in recent weeks for this has actually not been for this, sadly, but for the inclusion of a few minutes ofThe Dark Knight Rises that will be playing in front of it at select IMAX locations.  Never a good sign when the big event film is less an event in and of itself and more one because of the commercials leading it off.  The real story here should be the arrival of The Incredibles director Brad Bird taking the reins, though I can’t help but get the itch that this is the series where good directors make the stinkers in their resume.  Ironically, Brian DePalma has received a ton of flak in his career, yet the first one in this series was the strongest to me.  John Woo made an abortion of a “tearing off face masks” movie for the sequel (then again, he just might suck as a director overall; we’ve covered this, I believe) and J.J. Abrams made a pretty forgettable third edition.  Here’s hoping Bird rubs a little Pixar magic onto Cruise, Pegg, Renner and the gang.

Dylan’s Chance of Viewing (in the theater): 41%

Alvin and the Chipmunks: Chip-Wrecked
To steal my closing line from last week, said then about New Year’s Eve, the less said about this the better, right?

I am curious, though – how do you get to be the director known for making (mostly) shitty family-friendly movies?  Mike Mitchell’s recent resume includes Deuce Bigalow: Male Gigolo, Surviving Christmas, and Shrek Forever After – not exactly Oscar fare.  But (short of being a friend of Adam Sandler’s…coughDennisDugancough), how does one keep getting work?  And how do I specifically get this work?  Seems like it would pay well…

Dylan’s Chance of Viewing (in the theater): 0%


  • My favorite post of the week. I’m the only person eagerly awaiting more Holmes (there’s some gushing on the recent reel insight episode). And I need MI :4 to do amazingly well so my year of fantasy movie picks goes well.

    • I’ve been eagerly awaiting the Holmes sequel since it was announced shortly after the first one was released, so you’re not alone in the anticipation. The Dark Knight Rises trailer doesn’t hurt either.

    • Thanks, Jess! You do love you ‘TIGMAR,’ right? 🙂

      Aha – I’ve downloaded the RDJ episode, but not yet listened. Lots of swooning, eh? Good to see that you (along with David) aren’t alone.

      Speaking of fantasy movie picks, I need Holmes to do gangbusters. If it makes a shitload of money, I have a chance at winning. Otherwise, it’s 2nd place for me.

  • I’m actually looking forward to Sherlock Holmes although more to see the Dark Knight Rises trailer which could be shown in front of the movie (as well as the teaser for The Hobbit).

    I don’t really have any interest in shelling out $20 for an IMAX ticket for MI4 so I won’t be seeing it until it hits DVD most likely.

    • Your anticipation for movies is something I have yet to figure out, Castor. It’s a mystery, like so many things about you. 😛

      I’d like to see the Dark Knight Rises trailer as much as the next guy, but there are so many movies I need/want to see more than Sherlock (or MI4), so I’ll just have to wait the day or two that it takes for it to hit the interwebs.

  • It feels like either Holmes or MI could be some fun counter-programming for this time of year (at least for me), but I’d likely spend the whole time analyzing the art direction and sound editing, respectively. So I’ll probably go indie this week instead.

    • I can certainly see that – if we end up going to the movies with a bunch of kid relatives, there’s a really, really good chance that we’ll see Sherlock or MI4. Short of that, going indie myself as well.

  • The reaction on Sherlock is pretty mixed– it’s Fresh on RT but it has its share of detractors– but MI4 is getting enough good buzz that I’m half-tempted to see it for myself.

    • Indeed – 92% on RT for MI4 is incredibly high for it. I was not expecting that (even from Bird). Good for it.

      • Whatever, when are people gonna stop following RT blindly… RT scores are such hype builders its unhealthy.

        • Who’s following them blindly? You don’t think it’s a good tool?

          There have been plenty of “rotten” films that I’ve enjoyed and vice versa, but it’s a great gauge of the general feeling on a film.

          • I’d go on a limb and say a ton of people. It has gotten to the point where its the only reference in many reviews or boxoffice prediction articles.

            So people tend to base their hype score solely on RT and I don’t think having such a narrow playing field is very objective.

            I find the user grading on Boxoffice mojo really good and it could be a good alternate if a similar system (audience score) was implemented in pre-screenings for example.

            And yes I’m a commercial schlock that mainly sees film as a mass media entertainment market rather than individual pieces of art.

        • Apart from the fact that this comment is kind of insulting to my intelligence and to my ethics and compulsions as a film writer, it’s also sort a bit misguided.

          The only thing RT objectively does is gauge audience and critical reaction to any given film on release. That’s not really the same thing as building hype. In fact, I’d argue that it’s antithetical to that idea since “hype-building” infers an inclination toward getting people into theaters; RT’s scoring doesn’t strictly lend itself to that.

          I’m not even sure how “hype” became part of the discussion. I’m explicitly talking about how reactions to a film I’ve had little desire to see have changed my mind and may get me into a theater to watch it. Isn’t that what reading critic reviews is all about? Isn’t that what critics are for? If you want to argue that RT is just a tool for creating hype, then you have to be prepared to argue that that’s all critics are good for, too– since RT doesn’t do anything that a healthy perusal of numerous critical reactions to a film doesn’t also do. (Apart from, I admit, provide audience response as well.)

          While I’m sure some people do gauge the quality of a picture– even if they haven’t seen it– on RT’s percentage scores, I think arguing that “a ton” of people do without any data backing the claim is a misstep. RT’s a tool just like a critic review is a tool just like Metacritic is a tool– it’s just not a tool for hyping a picture.

          • Andrew: My comment was not intended to insult you. I simply challenge the fact that people tend to jump on the RT score quite blindly.

            I also think RT is one eyed in the fact that factual audience rating (grade) is not taken into account.

            For instance I’d say that 94% on Girl With the Dragon Tattoo (92% audience) is so off that I don’t get where they get those numbers from.

          • But Joel, just because marketing folks like to tout an RT score doesn’t change it’s meaning. Theoretically, a slightly-above average film could score 100% on RT…but that still doesn’t make the score invalid. All it means is that 100% of the reviewers gave it a ‘positive’ review. A 90%+ for Dragon Tattoo doesn’t validate the film as being great, just validates it as not being shitty.

          • Dylan: Whats a positive review? Its quite vague if you ask me. I’d prefer a numeric grade system to be honest.

            Your argument is what kills the credibility for me. I mean its stupid that a film with 3 stars out of 5 can get 100% (when 100% is what everyone looks at).

            To be honest I’m not that versed in RT, maybe Tom Clift (who is on it ) or someone else could break it down/explain it more thorough.

          • I think it’s safe to assume that positive means anything above a 2 on a 4-star scale or a 2.5 out of 5, etc.

            “Your argument is what kills the credibility for me. I mean its stupid that a film with 3 stars out of 5 can get 100% (when 100% is what everyone looks at).”

            See, I completely disagree – don’t get hung up on seeing 100% and thinking it means the same thing as a 5/5 review and it won’t bother you. It’s just a temperature to see (generally) what critics are saying, hence the aggregator term. It’s very broad, but it’s also brilliant in its simplicity. I guess you could look at it and say, “what is the percent chance that I’m going to like this movie?” I think that’s a wonderful tool, and just as (if not more) meaningful than seeing that a film has a 7.5/10 score at IMDb.

  • Once your daughter gets a little older, that 0% on the Chipmunks will rise to at least a 50% – I pretty much guarantee it.

    I never minded watching some children’s films – especially Disney and Pixar – but the amount of children’s films that you watch once your child reaches a certain age is amazing.

    No more 0% from you on those. And I will laugh. HAHAHA.

    • We’ll see about that, Keith. I have so many friends that were parents before me like you who are determined to see me watch crappy movies that I’m determined not to (or at least, not to watch them 1000 times). My baby girl will have great taste…or won’t go to the movies at all! 😀

      Perhaps I’ll just pawn those bad movies off on Grampy, who seems to have no problem seeing terrible movies with his other grandkids…

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