Thursday, June 6, 2013

At the Movies – June 2013 – Part 3: Most Anticipated Films

Must-See of the Month:

Man of Steel (Zack Snyder) – Action Adventure – Jun 14
Summary: Clark Kent has spent his life hiding who he really is, but after Earth is invaded by members of his alien race he must rise to the occasion fully revealing his gifts – it is Superman’s origin story. Filmmakers: Director Zack Snyder has been a favorite at Warner Bros. since 300. They have been looking for a high profile film to put him on, and Man of Steel is it. The film is written by David Goyer and Christopher Nolan with Nolan and partner Emma Thomas also producing – the team that gave us The Dark Knight Trilogy. Snyder is working with wonderful composer Hans Zimmer (The Dark Knight Rises), cinematographer Amir Morki (The Salton Sea), and production designer Alex McDowell (worked on Watchman for Snyder). Cast: It stars Henry Cavill (who some will recognize from The Tudors), and features Amy Adams, Russell Crowe, Michael Shannon, Kevin Costner, Diane Lane, Laurence Fishburne, Christopher Meloni, and Michael Kelly in support. Expectations: Man of Steel looks like the best film of the summer, hands down. However, Zack Snyder directing does leave me feeling a bit anxious. He often cannot find the right balance between visual style and dramatic substance. His last film Sucker Punch is almost unwatchable, as it completely abandons all notion of efficient storytelling in favor of highly stylized visuals. Watchman and 300, while both decent films, also suffer from a favoring of visuals over narrative. Snyder’s best structured film is probably his first: Dawn of the Dead. All that said, Christopher Nolan structured Man of Steel’s story and is shepherding the project, and it looks like Man of Steel does for Superman what Batman Begins did for Batman. It seems as though Nolan has curbed Snyder’s directorial tendencies allowing him to reach his great potential (Watchman was very close to being amazing). This is a must-see for fans of big summer blockbusters. Trailer: HereReview: Here.

Worth Checking Out:

Much Ado About Nothing (Joss Whedon) – Romance Dramedy – Jun 7
Summary: Beatrice and Benedick do not like each other, but can they be coaxed into falling in love with each other? This is a modern retelling of William Shakespeare’s classic play (that still uses the Bard). Filmmakers: Writer-director Joss Whedon took a quick break from post-production on The Avengers to shoot this small film at his house with a few friends. It is his third film following Serenity and The Avengers. He also scored the film (which should makes fans of Dr. Horrible’s Sing-Along Blog and Once More with Feeling happy). He is working with cinematographer Jay Hunter and production designers Cindy Chao and Michele Yu (Save the Date). Cast: Amy Acker and Alexis Denisof star, with Reed Diamond, Nathan Fillion, Clark Gregg, Fran Kranz, Tom Lenk, Riki Lindhome, Sean Maher, and Jillian Morgese in support. Expectations: I really like Kenneth Branagh’s Much Ado About Nothing, and think of it as the definitive cinematic version. Whedon’s version looks very different, which is good. He is a master of language, which seemingly would make him a perfect person to adapt a Shakespeare play. Also, he often has Shakespeare readings at his house featuring many of the cast members. This film will work well additionally because Amy Acker and Alexis Denisof have fantastic chemistry as fans of Angel know well. The film played to critical praise during its festival screenings. It should make a good change of pace from all the blockbusters. Trailer: HereReview: Here.

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