I hope you boys aren’t too disappointed by the fact that Megan Fox will not be Shia LaBeouf’s sultry love interest in Transformers 3. She has been dropped (to put it bluntly).
The report comes from Paramount Pictures. The studio decided not to pick up Fox’s option for part three in the Michael Bay series. There is no word as to why they made the decision or who would replace the 24-year-old actress.
I bet not optioning her had something to do with that green stuff called money.
The last thing I heard before this report from Paramount was on Michael Bay’s blog, where he wrote “P.S. Megan Fox, welcome back. I promise no alien robots will harm you in any way during the production of this motion picture.”
Sometimes, this is not the easy gig that most would think it is. Today, for example, we’re tackling the Nightmare On Elm Street remake, and the problem here is is that the remake is better than many would expect…but not by all that much.
Nightmare on Elm Street is the terribly familiar (but still pretty fundamentally altered) story of a gardener by the name of Fred Krueger, who worked at a preschool and loved playing with children. As it turns out, he loved playing with children in pretty much every sense of the phrase, even in the more disgusting senses. Following a spectacular vigilante killing staged by Lex Luthor himself (seriously, it’s Clancy Brown, like the voice of Lex Luthor from the Justice League cartoons), somehow, Krueger has come back from the dead and is killing the young stoolies who spilled the beans about the extracurricular sex ed program going on at Badham Preschool.
It’s hard not to spoiler when it comes to a remake, because after all, you know what’s going on here because you’ve probably already seen the movie several times before it was actually released. I just reviewed it not too long ago on Blu-ray right here, but I tackled the original as opposed to the remake. In fact, just in case the FCC wants to get squirrely on me, I saw this one via a free ticket offered with every copy of the Blu-ray.
This one brought a lot of surprises with it, as they did a really nice job building tension, and then releasing it on a fairly regular basis with some good jump scares throughout. It’s actually possible to think of this as a little scarier than the original for a while. The upgraded effects lend a little extra punch to the parts that were merely kind of surrealist in the original–for example, the infamous “bedroom ceiling” killing, which started out as an odd sort of upside-down action is now a wild, hyperkinetic romp of gymnastic murder.
Nightmare on Elm Street is actually a pretty good horror flick, for a while, which was a whole lot more than many were expecting. But then, the truest Elm Street curse reared its ugly head and shot the remake right in the foot.
See, Nightmare on Elm Street has never really been known for its attention to canon. Seemed like every couple movies or so we were getting a new explanation for Freddy’s powers–from being the living embodiment of a bad dream gate guardian to being the recipient of dream demon powers to just being the expression of our collective unconscious. But you could always at least count on the movie to stick with the canon it established through that movie.
The last ten minutes of this installment will actually manage to violate ITS OWN CANON. Sure, I understand they’re just setting up a sequel, but for crying out loud, at LEAST stick with the plot you set up for this movie! I won’t give away the ending, but rest assured, they won’t be playing by the same rules in the end that they started by in the beginning.
So, yes–Platinum Dunes managed to not too badly bungle this remake, as opposed to the total hatchet job they pulled on Friday the 13th. The end result is at least occasionally scary, and Jackie Earle Haley is a worthy successor to Robert Englund. But there are still too many problems with this one to make anything much better than mediocre, thus the Screenhead Ten Scale hands it a passable six out of ten.
It’s something of a truism that art inevitably takes on the appearance of life itself. It’s a reflection of the things we see and hear every day. But life also has a way of imitating art, too, with its often more simplistic view. The simulacrum is almost never as complex as the thing it imitates, so people long for a life that is as simple as art.
And if you’re confused by the above statement, then I’ve done my job. Wonder why? Read on.
Green Zone features an American soldier (played by Matt Damon, and considering the guy just recently castigated the Democratic Party for not being PROGRESSIVE ENOUGH, this casting move makes a LOT of sense here) who’s off searching for those gosh-darned weapons of mass destruction that, to this day, no one can really seem to find in Iraq. Thus, our soldier will embark on a long and winding quest to try and find those gosh-darned weapons once and for all.
The problem here, of course, is that the White House and the CIA are at odds over long term strategy in Iraq, and part of that strategy apparently involves keeping everybody in the dark about the fact that we still can’t find those gosh-darned weapons thus we’re going to have a whole lot of back-and-forth cat-and-mouse loads-of-hyphenated-terms that add up to one thing:
Whoever wrote this movie didn’t have one single clue in his head about where he was going with it.
Seriously, this movie spends so much time on interdepartmental turf wars and associated backbiting (since when do Special Forces guys get in fist fights with regular Army? Any veterans out there want to ring in on that?) that it fails to realize how ABSURD its own existence is! Look, folks, the Iraq War really hasn’t even STOPPED yet. And we’re making movies about an event that’s still going on?
Worse, the movie itself is so confused that, by the time I got to the end, I was baffled at how the movie could end. Admittedly, there’s a lot of action going on in Green Zone, but they actually managed to take a shot of two guys talking at a table and film it like they were shooting at each other. Exposition here is catch-as-catch-can and often done in the middle of firefights and explosions, as if saying to its target audience: “We know you have the attention span of goldfish so here’s a lot of explosions. Plot? Who cares? All you need to know is that Bush lied about Iraq and only progressive heroes like Matt Damon can tell you the truth!”.
Politics aside, this movie is a poorly-realized sludge heap with virtually no coherent plot framework to hold it together. This still-steaming pantload of a movie will baffle, confuse, and waste your ticket price like no tomorrow.
However, explosions and gunfire, as we’ve discovered from Michael Bay’s entire career, will at least entertain. So if you find yourself seeing this, chances are you won’t be too disappointed if you don’t look at it very closely.
Otherwise, you’ll realize how stupid this entire movie is, and agree with the Screenhead Ten Scale which hands Green Zone, this gelid lump of a film, a three out of ten for being simple and explosively happy.
Being as I am FROM Michigan let me just pause for a moment here and express the complexity of emotions I feel at this moment. One, I’m happy to see that somebody’s planning to do something with that burnt-out section of death Michigan lovingly calls Detroit–seriously, if you’d seen it lately, you’d know that it’s seen better days. For crying out loud, Bay could take maybe five percent of his shooting budget for Transformers 3 and BUY large sections of Detroit outright.
Two, I’m a bit concerned. Detroit is…well…dangerous these days. Large sections of it are abandoned. There was talk about bulldozing sections and converting it to farm ground.
Maybe that’s the plan. A few hundred abandoned buildings would make great set pieces for Michael Bay to blow up, and this would probably accomplish something the city would want done anyway.
And considering that Bay’s already described Transformers 3 as being “very different from the other two”, who KNOWS what he’s going to do?
One thing’s for sure, though, he definitely got my interest.
Somewhere, the prince of darkness is wondering why he has to drag his mittens out of storage. It’s because Michael Bay, up here on earth, has just exhibited a startling amount of rational sense.
Why? He just started talking about Transformers 3, and he said there would be fewer explosions in it. And fewer robots. It’d be focused more on, get this, the CHARACTERS. He also said this:
“There will be a nice crescendo ending.” He added, “It gets much more into the robot character. The last time you kind of met a few of the robots; this time you’re gonna get a much cooler landscape.”
This makes perfect sense, actually. With all this in mind, let’s give the man the benefit of the doubt and forget he actually talked about getting an Oscar for Transformers 3.
Even this actually made some sense–no, put away the torches and pitchforks; it was for EFFECTS. Or possibly sound editing. Folks, there’s only one horrifying conclusion I can reach from this: did Hollywood’s leading hubris cloud actually LEARN FROM HIS MISTAKES??
What’s next? An eclipse? A rash of two headed calf births? Either way, I’m downright horrified, because now, I’m kind of looking forward to Transformers 3.
Well that’s an interesting bit, now isn’t it, folks? Seems that Michael Bay and the crew at Platinum Dunes aren’t letting grass grow under their feet since their impending release of Nightmare on Elm Street. In fact, by all accounts so far, they’re going to be ready to start shooting Transformers 3 by the end of May.
The word comes from Shia LaBeouf’s agent, CAA, that had this to say:
“He’ll likely start work in May on Transformers 3.”
Granted, that’s not a whole lot of support–he’ll LIKELY start work in May, about the same wait that Sam Raimi was LIKELY to start shooting Spider Man 4 by now. Five months is an eternity in movie circles and absolutely anything can happen between now and then.
While it may not be an absolute certainty that shooting will start in May, it’s safe enough to call it a fair bet. This makes it an even fairer bet that we should see this in time for summer 2011.
This is not exactly good news, folks, especially for anyone who was hoping the Nightmare on Elm Street movie would go off smoothly and without a hitch.
After the announcement that the test screenings for Nightmare on Elm Street flopped, it’s not a huge surprise to find that reshoots have been planned, for an admittedly minor part involving a funeral scene that required some extras to be brought in to serve as mourners.
Now, by itself, this means little. In fact, it means next to nothing…by itself. In isolation. The problem, of course, will emerge if this becomes a pattern. If this is only where it starts as opposed to where it finishes, we may have a serious problem on our hands. So we’ll keep our eyes on it for now, because this may be a temporary glitch or the beginning of something nasty.
But the current release date of April 30th appears to be well in hand, and hopefully we’ll get to see how this all comes out then.
And the news gets worse, folks, as we discover, much to everyone’s alarm yet not really surprise so much that the test screener for Nightmare on Elm Street was, well…not QUITE a complete disaster but really close.
The problem apparently was not so much Jackie Earle Haley, who by all reports kicked more ass than Chuck Norris on crystal meth, but most everybody else. And as we all know, you can’t stiffen a bucket of spit with a handful of buckshot.
So word further says that some reshoots are being staged, and there may be some improvements. The question of the day is will they be sufficient improvements to save the film from a similar fate as Friday the 13th?
I–indeed, we all–will have to remember that in this case at least they’re trying. Seriously, they’re running this through tests and doing reshoots…they’re not specifically going for a failure this time around, and they’re not going to drop the ball horribly or anything like that. And even if they do…they weren’t planning to. And that gives me just a little grudging respect for Michael Bay and company at Platinum Dunes.
Well, even if you’re not terribly fond of the remake scene, the idea that Nightmare On Elm Street is going to get a fresh coat of paint is a fairly exciting one. Leave aside the fact that Michael Bay and his gang of vultures over at Platinum Dunes is the one handling said remake–there’s still at least some chance it may be good.
The new image, which you can see at right, features the gloved one sparking some sparks on some industrial pipework, which is the kind of thing that he was wont to do at most any opportunity. Not exactly a mindblower or an earth-shaker, I know, but still pretty cool.
We can all rest fairly confident that, if nothing else, this sucker will at least LOOK good, and in Hollywood that counts for more than you might think. Hopefully, the script won’t be a complete disaster like Friday the 13th’s was (I’m STILL stewing over that wreck), and hopefully, we’ll manage to get something entertaining out of it.
That’s about the best we can hope for at this point.