Posts Tagged ‘avatar’


How To Train Your Dragon (3D)

March 31, 2010

“Animated 3d has arrived”

Final Thoughts:

The film is loosely based on the 2003 book of the same name with some changes.  It centers around a young boy, Hiccup who wants to be like all of his fellow Vikings, but always ends up causing trouble instead.  His goal in life is to kill the legendary Night Fury Dragon to prove himself to his tribe.  What ends up happening instead is that he becomes friends with the Dragon, Toothless, and teaches his tribe how to train the Dragons to work with them and for them rather than to fight them.  Or at leas thats the jist of the story without giving to away too much.

This film can be enjoyed by the entire family and the 3d is definitely used to enhance the film unlike the 2007 film Beowulf with a similar theme.  I will say that the relationship of Hiccup and Toothless is like Lilo & Stitch and even E.T. and some of the flying sequences reminded me of Avatar.   But what this film was able to do is make Dragons cute and cuddly.  I wanted to own my own Toothless after this film and take him home.  So Dragon’s can be man’s best friend after all.  The cast of voices included Gerard Butler, America Ferrera and Jonah Hill and worked perfectly for their characters, although the lead voice for Hiccup, Jay Baruchel sounded older than his character looked, but that was just a minor problem.

In the last few years, Pixar usually came out with an emotional and award-winning animated film,  but i believe Dreamworks may have just made that film.  I do expect Dragon to be nominated for best animated feature in next years Academy Awards and I also sense a sequel.

My grade: 94 (Watch It more than once)

Rotten Tomatoes: 97 (Fresh)

MetaCritic: 74  (Generally Favorable Reviews)

US Gross: 48.5m (Updated: March 31)


If you didn’t already know…

March 28, 2010

  • Ticket prices for the latest 3d epic How To Train Your Dragon when up as much as 26%!
  • Rumor has it that the evil Queen from Sleeping Beauty Maleficent will be turned into a movie possibly directed by Tim Burton and starring Angelina Jolie as the wicked fairy god mother
  • Fox cancels 24!
  • Worldwide a 3d film has occupied the top spot in the box-office charts for 12 straight weeks (Avatar – 8 weeks, Alice In Wonderland 4 weeks)
  • Lady Gaga reaches the top spot with her debut album, The Fame (Monster) for the first time in its 64th week!! on the world charts
  • Sony Music Entertainment has blocked Beyonce’s youtube page due to a copyright infringement case involving her label
  • Justin Bieber’s album, My World 2.0 is expected to top the Billboard charts this coming week to the tune of 225,000 – 250,000!
  • Gossip blogger Perez Hiton announces he will be launching a weekly music countdown to rival Ryan Seacrest’s current version.

And the Academy Award goes to…

March 7, 2010

“This is definitely going to be one of the most anticipated Oscar telecast’s in years for many reasons.  First, there are 10 best picture nominees.  The last time that happened was in the 30’s and 40’s.  Second, there are two hosts.  The last time that happened was 1987.  Third, there will be no songs sung from the best song category.  Instead, there will be a montage of the films whose songs are nominated and how the song was incorporated into the film.  Fourth, friends of nominated Actors and Actresses are supposed to be honoring them with their nominations.  Finally, the most hotly anticipated race for best picture and best director between two very different films.  This is the first time since 1997 that one of the nominees is the top grossing film of all-time (Avatar) going up against one of the smaller grossing films (The Hurt Locker) although The Hurt Locker has been a consistent guild and critics favorite, Avatar has won the popular vote hands down.  Will Kathryn Bigelow become the first woman ever to win best director?  All eyes are on these two awards and who from the two films which boast the most nominations (9) will come home with the most statuettes.  My predictions are that Avatar goes home with most if not all of the tech awards with The Hurt Locker going home with the big prizes, although secretly Avatar is my film to win them all!!”

Here are my final predictions and (alternates) for the 82nd Academy Awards:

  • Best PictureThe Hurt Locker (Avatar)
  • Best Director – Kathryn Bigelow – The Hurt Locker (James Cameron – Avatar)
  • Screenplay(Adapted) – Up In The Air (Precious)
  • Screenplay(Original) – Inglorious Basterds (The Hurt Locker)
  • Leading Actor – Jeff Bridges – Crazy Heart (Colin Firth – A Single Man)
  • Leading Actress – Sandra Bullock – The Blind Side (Meryl Streep – Julie & Julia)
  • Supporting Actor – Christoph Waltz – Inglorious Basterds
  • Supporting Actress – Monique – Precious
  • Animated Feature – Up
  • Foreign Film – Un Prophete – France (The White Ribbon – Germany)
  • Documentary Feature – The Cove (Food Inc.)
  • Documentary Short – China’s Unnatural Disaster (The Last Truck)
  • Short Film Animated – Logorama (A Matter of Loaf and Death)
  • Short Film Live Action – The Door (Miracle Fish)
  • Art Direction – Avatar
  • Cinematography – Avatar (The Hurt Locker)
  • Costume Design – The Young Victoria (Bright Star)
  • Film Editing – The Hurt Locker (Avatar)
  • Makeup – Star Trek (The Young Victoria)
  • Original Score – Up (Avatar)
  • Original Song – The Weary Kind – Crazy Heart
  • Sound Mixing – The Hurt Locker (Avatar)
  • Sound Editing – Avatar (The Hurt Locker)
  • Visual Effects – Avatar

Final Thoughts: Its going to be a tough race when Avatar and The Hurt Locker are competing against each other but all of the precursors have pointed to the success of The Hurt Locker in many categories.  And because of the preferential voting system, Inglorious Basterds has been seen as a threat for best picture as well!


Weekend Update March 5-7

March 3, 2010

“There is no doubt that the number 1 film this weekend will be one of the most talked about films of the year so far, Alice In Wonderland.  From the shortened movie theater time-frame which has caused a lot of controversy and possible boycotts to the first 3d film to show since the record-breaking Avatar, there is a lot going for the film this weekend.  With the film coming out it is obvious many films were trying to stay away from opening against it, however there are two contenders.”

Alice In Wonderland

Watch It

Brooklyn’s Finest

Netflix It (This week we get a serious cop drama.  I guess if you can’t get tickets to Alice, this could be a good second choice.  I would wait to see it in dvd)


Skip It


If you didn’t already know…

February 10, 2010

  • The delayed Spider Man 4 will now be Spider Man (in 3D) and is scheduled for a July 2012 release.  If you didn’t also know the last two installments of Harry Potter are scheduled to be shot in 3D as well.  Hopefully they will come out with reusable 3D glasses that are more comfortable and fashionable.
  • Dear John is the film that knocked of Avatar from the number 1 spot after 7 consecutive weeks!  Lost In Space was the film that knocked off Titanic after a 15 week run.  Who would have thought a romantic comedy and not a blockbuster would end Avatar’s run?
  • The rights to the Terminator franchise was sold to Pacificor for $29.5m after a battle between Lionsgate and Sony Pictures.  Pacificor?
  • Howard Stern is asking for $100m to take over the spot of Simon Cowell on next season’s American Idol.  Here’s to hoping Idol doesn’t accept it.  Even Ellen doesn’t approve.
  • Tom Cruise has signed on to Mission Impossible 4.  Really?
  • Sade’s comeback album, Soldier of Love is expected to become number 1 on the Billboard charts next week predicted to sell 375,000 – 400,000 copies.  Her last set, “Lover’s rock” debuted at number 3 in 2000.
  • MTV finally dropped the “Music Television” from its logo.  Make’s sense considering they replaced music with Jersey Shore and Teen Mom!!
  • Prior to the delay of his prison time, Lil Wayne shot 9 music videos in one week to hold over his fan’s during his year in prison.  By the way, his prison sentences was delayed because of his teeth?!?

Weekend Update February 5-7

February 3, 2010

“After a record breaking 7th weekend and stiff competition, this weeks crop of films don’t seem to have what is needed to take down the Na’vi!  With a 45% increase in ticket sales from 9 academy award nominations, Avatar should keep the top spot for an 8th weekend.  In contention is the best-selling author of The Notebook with Dear John.  In a nutshell it’s the same story with different characters and the very popular leading man, Channing Tatum.  With most of the female and tween audience, the film should open well and is the watch it film for this week.   However, all of the new films are competing with award nominated films which are expanding, so it will be a much larger field and in this case, I would advise watching one of the nominated films instead!”

Note: Due to Academy Award nominations, Precious, Up In the Air, Crazy Heart and An Education are expanding theaters.

Watch It

From Paris With Love, Frozen, District B13: Ultimatum, Terribly Happy

Netflix It

Jackie Chan in Shinjuku Incident, The Korean, Ajami

Forget It

Update: As of 4pm today (Feb 3) Dear John becomes the first film to lead Avatar on 41% to 34%, however Avatar still lead on 46% to 25%.  This gives Avatar a slight edge, although the exact numbers are unclear.  Dear John is destined for a huge opening on Friday, however Avatar most likely will take Saturday.  Sunday numbers will be low for both films because of Superbowl so it’ll be a close race.  Are we looking at another Sherlock Holmes/Book of Eli ending or will this be the film to take down Avatar?


Academy Award Nominations 2010

February 1, 2010

“And the nominees are…Avatar and The Hurt Locker both share the most nods (9) with Inglorious Basterds just behind (8).  The best picture race produced a surprise in The Blind Side, whose lead actress was also nominated.  In the acting categories, the only real surprise is in the supporting actress category where none of the Basterds girl’s made it through.  Instead Maggie Gylennhaal and Penelope Cruz take the last few spots.  Although these are minor surprises, the supporting categories are already written and Monique and Christoph Waltz should go home with the top prize after already sweeping the guilds and critics!  The Directors matched the Director’s Guild and the competition is once again on for Cameron Bigelow showdown in both the Director and Picture race.  Screenplay nominees were safe with a surprise from The Messenger whose actor was also nominated in supporting.  In the tech categories, Avatar took hold of most of the categories although The Hurt Locker wasn’t too far behind.  The Imaginarium of Dr Parnassus and Harry Potter also took some nods.  The only surprise in the sound categories is the exclusion of 2012 and District 9 over The Hurt Locker.  When you get nominated in a category that you were far from contention, you know you are a major favorite.  Avatar was excluded from the always unpredictable Best Song, so unfortunately, No Leona Lewis at the Academy Awards.  In the end, Up became the second animated film to get a best picture nod (The first was Beauty and the Beast).  Kathryn Bigelow becomes the fourth woman to be nominated for best director (And at this point, the first to win the big prize).  Meryl Streep increases her record now to 16 nominations.  Precious becomes the fifth film with a predominantly African-American cast to be nominated for best picture.  Avatar and District 9 became the 3rd and 4th sci-fi films to be nominated for best picture.  Notably snubbed for awards this year are (500) Days of Summer, The Hangover, The Road, This is It, and 2012!”

For the complete Academy Award nominations, visit



If you didn’t already know…

January 26, 2010

  • X-Factor will be debuting on American TV’s in the fall of 2011 so as not to compete against American Idol!! Paula Abdul has been signed to sit on the panel with Simon Cowell.  Tommy Motolla is currently the front-runner for a seat on X-Factor and also to replace Cowell on Idol.. the drama begins!!
  • Avatar is now the official Number 1 film in the world in less than 2 months!!
  • SAW 3d (yes) vs Paranormal Activity 2 for Halloween 2010 (Last year, Paranormal Activity beat out Saw from a 6th consecutive Halloween hit!)
  • The Hurt Locker won the Critics Choice and Producers Guild, Inglorious Basterds won the Screen Actors Guild for Ensemble, while Avatar took the Golden Globes for drama…The Oscar race is wide open for Best Picture!!
  • After Lady Gaga broke the weekly plays radio airplay record with Bad Romance pushing 10,859, Ke$ha breaks it this week with 11,224 with Tik Tok!!
  • Black Eyed Peas were wrongfully given the best international group award at the NRJ Awards in France which was supposed to go to Tokio Hotel!!

Weekend Update January 29-31

January 26, 2010

“Once again Avatar has a strong chance at a 7th straight week on top, however, Mel Gibson may actually give the film a run for it’s money.  This is the perfect Gibson vehicle, although I do sense a similarity with last years  Taken, about a father and daughter.  That film opened to 24 million and is in a similar theater count and also opened in the same time of the year.. Coincidence?   Maybe.. It will be a close race and it is possible Gibson’s action thriller will win on Friday with Avatar taking Saturday and Sunday for a photo-finish.  This is definitely the film to watch for the weekend”

Watch It

Off And Running, Falling Awake

Netflix It (Off and the movie a documentary or a movie?  either way, it seems interesting, an adopted girl trying to get in touch with her roots.  Falling Awake is also a coming of age story about a boy who has to decide whether to pursue his music career and falls in love along the way)

When In Rome, The Weathered Underground, Saint John Of Las Vegas

Forget It (The Weathered Underground is supposed to be an interactive film..don’t know how that will work out?  Saint John of Las Vegas looks sad and depressing, while the second big release of the week with Kristen Bell and Josh Duhamel, just seems like the romantic comedy that falls flat with cliche’s and corny dialogue.  I guess if you are fans of either of the two, you could watch the film, but i say forget it!!)


Weekend Update January 22-24

January 19, 2010

“Gladiators at the box-office.  Its Avatar against any new film trying to take it down from its perch.  The Book Of Eli was only 10million from the beast and held the number 1 position on Friday.  This is looking good for the latest crop of films trying to close the gap and create a new number 1 in America.  Will it be a 6th straight weekend atop the chart or will The Rock try to take down the Na’vi!  This week the strongest competition is The Tooth Fairy.  Opening in over 3000 screens and a non-thriller or horror film attracting the men and older audiences, the kids and tweens will come out to see the Rock in his latest comedy.  I may be wrong here and it flops due to its very unusual and cooky story, but it seems to be the one to watch this weekend.  Also out in theaters is Legion which is an r-rated science fiction horror film.  Another end of world film.  As we have seen in the last few weeks, Daybreakers and The Book of Eli, fell short, and this one will probably follow suit, however, its probably another strong bet for this weekend!”

The Tooth Fairy, Legion

Watch It

Extraordinary Measures, The Paranoids

Netflix It (I am definitely more used to seeing Harrison Ford and Ben Fraser in action films, so this serious drama is not what i expected.  It’s definitely not going to attract the boys and teens…maybe the ladies on date-night?  Also opening is The Paranoids, an Argentinian comedy about a loser who betrays his successful friend.  It’s very awards festival patty, but your best bet is to wait for these films to come out on dvd!)

To Save a Life

Forget It (Mean Girls meets Precious.  Its a high-school drama about girls, friendships, betrayal and suicide.  Its definitely a downer)

Update: As of this afternoon (Jan 20) Fandango is reporting that 68% of its sales for this weekend are for Avatar.  The Tooth Fairy has 3%!