LISTEN – THE REEL REPORT WITH RIA RENOUF – APRIL 15th, 2016

Brace yourselves, friends: this week, it’s an action-packed week at the cinemas.

I’m not going to lie: the past few weeks have been mostly boring for me. I wasn’t excited for Batman vs. Superman: Dawn of Justice (in case you’ve forgotten about my displeasure, you can read about it here), and the only thing I’ve been excited for is Hardcore Henry…which is why, for me, it’s such a shame to see it at number five at the North American box office. It’s done a bit more than $6 million in its first week out. If you’re curious to know what I thought of this first-person action film, you can take a look at my review here.

If you ask me, this has been a week of oddities, courtesy of the general audiences. Movies like My Big Fat Greek Wedding 2 (massively panned by critics), and The Boss with Melissa McCarthy (also panned) put up some solid financial performances. McCarthy’s latest comedic fare managed to topple Batman vs. Superman: Dawn of Justice last weekend, bringing in a little more than $23 million between from last Friday to Sunday.

I’m not surprised, but Jake Gyllenhaal’s Demolition has scored just a little more than a million dollars. Yes. ONE million. Yikes. It doesn’t have as big of a release in Metro Vancouver, but, at its peak (when comparing day-to-day), it drew in a little more than $400,000 in one day – far below expectations for the first week.

Expect this week’s box office to see massive change, though, as the following films make their way into the theatres…

OUT IN THEATRES

Disney’s The Jungle Book

This live-action/CGI film features an all-star voice cast: Bill Murray, Neel Seethi, Ben Kingsley, Idris Elba, and Scarlett Johannsen – to name a few. This is a round of Disney’s Golden Age Era cartoons being remade – so we’ve had Cinderella, we’ve had Alice in Wonderland – and this film adds to that list.

In case you’re unfamiliar with the plot, man-cub Mowgli flees the jungle after a threat from the tiger Shere Khan.
He also meets a number of characters along the way who may – or may not – have his best interests at heart.

I was able to watch the film in its late-night release last night. You can take a look at what I thought by clicking here.


Miles Ahead

This film was not only co-written and directed by Don Cheadle – he also stars in it. It explores the life and times of Miles Davis – yes, the famous jazz musician. (Or, if you prefer, the creator of what he called ‘social music.’)

I had a chance to screen this film. My full review can be found here. This one is in limited release in Metro Vancouver.


Criminal 

This film has an all-star cast: Ryan Reynolds, Gary Oldman, Kevin Costner, Gal Gadot and Tommy Lee Jones. This crime/thriller film chronicles the experiences of an ex-con implanted with a dead CIA agent’s memories. The flacks above him hope he’ll be able to finish the dead guy’s assignment.

This trailer actually reminds me of Self/Less (that film also starred Ryan Reynolds), which did not perform well at the box office – the premise of Self/Less was similar in nature to Criminal, and seemed a little silly to me. But what about this film? Critics aren’t giving it a good time. On Rotten Tomatoes, the average rating from reviewers peg it between 18% and 20%. Not the worst so far this year, but that rating is still not good. Out on a wide release.


Barbeshop: The Next Cut

Starring Ice Cube, Cedric the Entertainer and Regina Hall, it’s been ten years since our first encounter with Calvin’s Barbershop. Present day, and Calvin’s Barbershop is dealing with a community that has taken a turn for the worse. Calvin and his crew come up with a plan to save the shop, and the neighbourhood.

The critics on Rotten Tomatoes are eating this one up! It’s getting a lot of positive feedback, with, more or less, a 70% rating. Most reviews say the film has a lot of ‘real-life truths’ in the story line, along with some fun to boot.

Also, at the Vancity Theatre Friday, April 15th: High Rise, starring Tom Hiddleston, Sienna Miller, Luke Evans and Jeremy Irons. This came out last year, but it’ll be getting a special screening. It’s based on the 1975 novel by J.G. Ballard, and follows a young doctor seduced by a residential tower block in London.

SPECIAL FEATURE: PATTERSON’S WAGER

I had the chance to sit down with Corbin Saleken, who is the director, writer, producer for locally-produced flick Patterson’s Wager. Saleken managed to make his dream a reality by financing an entire film on his own – which is admirable. This locally created film follows the story of a man who has the unpredictable ability to see two minutes into the future. It involves just one fantastical element, but aside from that, Corbin says it’s a pretty grounded story. I had the chance to catch up with him earlier this week – ahead of two screenings of his film. You can listen to the Reel Report cut of the interview below. The trailer is below.

Patterson’s Wager trailer (Canadian version) from Corbin Saleken on Vimeo.

Patterson’s Wager screens at the Vancity Theatre on Sunday, April 17th at 8:25 PM, and on Wednesday, April 20th at 5:20 PM.

TRAILERS THAT HAVE PEOPLE TALKING

The Secret Life of Pets

People are gushing over this cute cartoon from Illumination. Yes, it’s the same studio that worked on Despicable Me and Minions. This is trailer number three – with some new footage. Check it out!

Doctor Strange

The trailer debuted on The Jimmy Kimmel Show, but the good news is it’s now out for everyone to see. If you missed it, take a look below.

OUT ON BLURAY, DVD, DIGITAL DOWNLOAD

There honestly isn’t much happening this week. Fromage 2004 is out – this appears to be some material courtesy of Ed the Sock.

Next week, however, lots to look forward to: The Revenant, The Lady in the Van, and Ip Man 3 are out for your home viewing pleasure. Of course, The Revenant was the big film that gave Leonardo DiCaprio his elusive Oscar. The Lady in the Van, starring Maggie Smith, also saw the Harry Potter actress earning a number of accolades. If you haven’t seen Ip Man 3, or you aren’t familiar with the franchise, then you can get to know the series’ star, Donnie Yen, who will star in the upcoming Rogue One: A Star Wars Story in December.

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