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hail HYDRA | by maryann johanson

my week at the movies: ‘Fanboys,’ ‘Inkheart,’ ‘Two Lovers,’ ‘The Class’

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Oh boy: Fanboys (opens in the U.S. on February 6; no U.K. release date has yet been announced) is about a buncha geeks who, a decade ago, made a pilgrimage to Skywalker Ranch to steal an early copy of The Phantom Menace. It’s sort of adorable, now, how much we all thought that movie wasn’t gonna suck. This film stars the wildly unappealing Dan Fogler and has traveled a rocky road itself, which is often a bad sign. But it does feature William Shater and Kevin Smith as themselves, and Carrie Fisher and Billy Dee Williams as not themselves. So it could be fun.

Tomorrow as Barack Obama is getting sworn in as our new president, I’ll be about halfway through Inkheart (now playing in the U.K.; opens in the U.S. on January 23). I’m just saying, is all. The trailer looks okay, and anyway, I’ll be DVRing the inauguration to watch later…

Did you see this terrifying picture of Joaquin Phoenix that was at the Daily News site yesterday? What a shame that he’s given up his acting career, because I hear they’re casting for The Grizzly Adams Story. Man, I hope he doesn’t look like this in Two Lovers (now playing on HDnet Ultra VOD; opens theatrically in limited releases in the U.S. on February 13, and in the U.K. on February 27). I mean, he looks like his usual quirkily handsome self in the trailer, but maybe they left the horrifying stuff out so as not to scare us off…

The Class (opens in limited release in the U.S. on January 30, and in the U.K. on February 27) won the Palme d’Or at Cannes last year and is on the short list for Oscar consideration for Best Foreign Language Film. (We’ll know on Thursday morning if it’s one of the five nominees.) It’s the based-on-fact story of an inner-city Parisian schoolteacher. I hear they thought of calling it Le Stand et Deliver.


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  • Patrick

    I’ll give “Fanboys” the benefit of the doubt when it comes to my town, but I must say I’m totally burned-out on “Star Wars” references and allusions in EVERY FRIGGIN’ ASPECT OF POPULAR CULTURE (LIKE THERE’S NEVER BEEN ANOTHER MOVIE SERIES IN THE HISTORY OF CINEMA).

    I don’t want to go off on a tangent here, but the nineties are very much over and it is no longer hip or cutting edge to make “Star Wars” references. It’s downright banal 30+ years into the phenomenon. Can this trend be toned down a smidge say, just 10%-20%? Oh wait…

    …sorry, I’m ranting. (Sorry dyed-in-the-wool Trek Fan here. Again, I’ll give it a look.)

  • JoshDM

    Trailer for InkHeart makes me think Stardust. Maybe I just get that vibe because I just saw Stardust, but still…

  • bitchen frizzy

    I had a similar impression of the Inkheart trailer. I swear I saw Dorothy’s house fall from the sky toward the end of the trailer.

    Is it intentionally derivative – like as in the characters are experiencing scenes from favorite stories of theirs or something?

  • MaryAnn

    *Inkheart* is about people who can read stories outloud into reality. So, yes, there are references to classic stories you will have heard of.

  • JoshDM

    Didn’t Adam Sandler just do a movie like that?

  • JoshDM

    Didn’t Adam Sandler just do a movie like that?

    This is like Armageddon and Deep Impact all over again.

  • http://toniokruger.blogspot.com Tonio Kruger

    I’ll give “Fanboys” the benefit of the doubt when it comes to my town, but I must say I’m totally burned-out on “Star Wars” references and allusions in EVERY FRIGGIN’ ASPECT OF POPULAR CULTURE (LIKE THERE’S NEVER BEEN ANOTHER MOVIE SERIES IN THE HISTORY OF CINEMA).

    I don’t want to go off on a tangent here, but the nineties are very much over and it is no longer hip or cutting edge to make “Star Wars” references. It’s downright banal 30+ years into the phenomenon. Can this trend be toned down a smidge say, just 10%-20%? Oh wait…

    Yes, what we really need is more elements of pop culture with shameless Dr. Who references. For exampe, at least one use of the phrase “timey wimey” in everything–even Westerns and Shakespearean adaptions. Or else an use of the phrase of “Sorry. I’m so sorry” in everything from the next piece of Oscarbait to the annual State of the Union address…

    Seriously, I’m so glad someone else hates all the Star Wars references we’ve been getting lately. But Star Wars is not the only movie that has provoked people to go overboard with film references. Consider, if you will, such past contenders for the title of “source of most irritating amount of film references” as Gone with the Wind, The Wizard of Oz, Casablanca, Psycho, The Graduate, James Bond films, Deliverance, The Godfather and E.T..

    That said, I have to admit that the one reason I wish to see this movie is that its star Kristen Bell looks really really cute in some of the publicity shots.

    Plus, it’s not like she’s likely to be appearing in Heroes anymore…

  • MaryAnn

    *Inkheart* bears next to no resemblance to *Bedtime Stories.*

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