By Paul Anthony
Welcome to box office Monday where we run down the numbers from the weekend and see who took the top spot!! Now it has been awhile since we did this and a lot has changed with the world. We know we are in a pandemic which basically shut down Hollywood for several months and theaters closed as while. Now Hollywood started back and came up with the idea that some films might have to go to streaming as while but they will still be out in theaters as while. Usually I would give an opinion if the moving going to be a flop based on the numbers regardless if we have reviewed it or not, well this time for the moment at least that will be harder to decide until life goes back to normal with everything being at full capacity but I will try my best!! This week we had two new films join the current set of films that are out but only 1 manage to crack the top ten. Nomadland came in at number 7, well Blithe Spirit came in at number 13 now here are the rest of the top ten films over the weekend!!
- The Croods: A New Age which made $1,700,000 and has been out for 13 weeks now making 50 plus million so far
- The Little Things which made 1,200,000 and has been out for 4 weeks and made a total of 11,800,000 so far
- Judas and the Black Messiah which made 905,000 this week and has been out for 2 weeks which a gross 3,390,000 so far
- WonderWoman 1984 made 805,000 this week and has been out for for 9 weeks making 42,692,000 so far
- The Marksman which made 775,000 this week and has been out for 6 weeks making 11,450,000 so far
- Monster Hunter which made 510,000 this week and has been out for 10 weeks making a total of 13,407, 385 so far
- Nomadland which is in its opening weekend made 503,000
- Land which made 500,000 this week and has been out for two weeks making a gross of 1,626,205 so far
- News of the World which made 245,000 and has been out for 9 weeks and total gross so far is 11,706,560
- the War with grandpa which made 224,188 and has been out for 20 weeks making a gross of 20,329,117
Now we shall see next week who can stay in the top ten or join the top 10!!
By: Justin Hopkins
And here we are, at our first stop on our road to Wrestlemania, the Elimination Chamber. Which kind of shows how Bi-Polar WWE’s Booking truly is. Some of the bad is not their fault, while others is absolutely on them. Not saying that it is all bad. What they are doing right is exciting and the wrestling, at the very least, should be awesome and if you couldn’t tell with the thumbnail, super excited for one match in particularly. So, lets dive in and try to predict this whopping four.. maybe five match card.
UNITED STATES CHAMPIONSHIP – RIDDLE VS KEITH LEE(?) VS BOBBY LASHLEY(C)
Alright, so according to the rumor mill and announce team on Raw, Keith was injured and position in the match may be up in the air. Personally. think it is a work and he will be fine. Certainly hoping so, otherwise we are looking at another match between Riddle and Bobby and getting tired of the feud between Riddle and the Hurt Business. They are fully capable of having feuds with others and the sad part is, think this is going to continue. Think they are looking to change it up though, and by that, I mean Lashley will be dropping his title to one Riddle and have him chase to Wrestlemania.
Winner and new United States Champion – Riddle
RAW’S WOMEN’S CHAMPIONSHIP – ASUKA (C) VS ??? (LACEY EVANS)
Before I get to the prediction, I am very happy for Lacey Evans and her family on the pregnancy’s and hope for nothing but the best.
What am I suppose to say about this? They knew Monday that Lacey was Pregnant and instead of trying to get Asuka another opponent, they ran some stupid story that implied that Ric is the baby Daddy. Asuka is one of the best wrestlers on the roster. She gives great to memorable matches and her promos are gleaming with passion. When lockdown was happening and WWE was scrambling trying to figure out how to do this, she was paving the way and making the shows so much better and is thanked with no story. This was a title match based around Charlotte. Asuka hasn’t had her own story since she feuded with Sasha and Bayley. Which in a way, was more their story than hers. Some theories for replacement, if they don’t just drop it entirely. Rhea Ripley, which I would love to see happen, with a proper story leading to Wrestlemania. Rhea and Asuka could legit put on a five star match that would threaten to steal the show, or Charlotte and have her take the title to defend it against Rhea and get Rhea her win back. Which is only happening because they have to fix the damage they made last year when Charlotte beat Rhea. It is amazing how they have this caliber of talent and can’t book a show.
Winner – They drop the match and bring Rhea up tomorrow and start booking for a ONE-ON-ONE match between Rhea and Asuka at Mania.
WWE CHAMPIONSHIP MATCH – KOFI KINGSTON VS JEFF HARDY VS AJ STYLES VS RANDY ORTON VS SHEAMUS VS DREW MCINTYRE(C)
Alright, back to happier things. I can’t understand the reason behind the idea of Drew dropping the belt to win it back in front of the crowd at Wrestlemania. It get that it is side, but he’ll get the pop he deserves arriving as Champion and it will be just as glorious instead of trying to manufacture the moment. This match should be great. Probably see a lot of story threads occurring. Kofi losing because of Retribution and can see Orton being taken out by The Fiend. I think he will leave the pod and be instantly abducted somewhere else and Drew picking up the victory and setting up Edge to pick him for Mania and more on why later.
Winner and still WWE Champion- Drew McIntyre
ELIMINATION CHAMBER WHERE THE WINNER GETS A SHOT AT THE UNIVERSAL CHAMPIONSHIP – KING CORBIN VS SAMI ZAYN VS DANIEL BRYAN VS JEY USO VS KEVIN OWENS VS CESARO
This match is going to be incredible. These six guys are going to destroy one another in what is just going to be an amazing match where you can make a case for each of them to win this match, but.. I can’t go against it. For the first time in so long. Cesaro is finally, at long last getting his push, that he has worked so hard for, and I am fully behind it. Owens has had multiple shots. Daniel Bryan can get a title match at any time. Jey’s redemption is still cooking, and it won’t be heel vs heel, but could easily be way to turn Sami face which would be nice, but no. It’s time for the Cesaro Section to stand up and Cesaro takes this match.
Winner – Cesaro
UNVIERSAL CHAMPIONSHIP CESARO VS ROMAN REIGNS
Cesaro isn’t going to win this. Got to be realistic, but think about this. Cesaro wins a grueling Chamber Match, gets beaten down by Jey as Roman makes his way down, but Cesaro gets one big shot in before losing, and we are off from here. Cesaro making a big push to become number one contender at Fast Lane to take on Roman at Mania. Just think about the crowd reaction to finally seeing someone they have been wanting to see have his moment. Drew vs Edge would be stellar, but this could be a great match for someone who has been there all along, and seeds can be planted here.
Winner and still Universal Champion – Roman Reigns
As always, I hope you enjoyed and….
Thank You For Reading.
By: Justin Hopkins
I had to take an extended break from the B Movie Sunday Reviews. After a string of movies that were absolutely atrocious and not worth taking about. Had to go back to a well that never seems to do wrong by me, a campy shark movie. There is an overabundance of them top pick from and so rarely fail to entertain. Now, this was not my original choice. Was going for another shark movie, but when I saw the title Swamp Shark, knew it was for me. Let’s dive in and see if this managed to break a bit of a bad streak shall we.
Starting with a group of people sitting near a river getting drunk and having a good time when the sheriff arrived. Kind of scaring them off. Some drove away and the others getting on a boat and sailing away. Which was a ploy by the Sheriff to clear the area. Bringing in a shipment of some kind, which arrives in a water tanker. Bucking hard enough to break the entire tank free of the truck and killing someone as it rolled into the river and a shark gets out. Sheriff telling the guy he was meeting to keep it to himself and we jump to a restaurant called The Gator Shed, with a pen outside alligators for people to see and learn about. Place run by the Broussard Family. Jason ” Swamp Thing” Broussard, his Sister Jackie and teen sister Krystal. Along with Martin and Rachael’s Tyler. While Rachael is talking to a mystery guy who has been coming in a lot as of late, a drunken Jackson makes a scene and while Jason is throwing him out, punches him in the face and gets arrested by a Sheriff who has been nagging Rachael for dinner and she uses that to get Jason out of trouble without actually agreeing to anything. Later that night Jackson comes back, looking to do something to the gators to get even, but freezes up when he spots the shark fin. Hitting the dock and knocking him into the water and devours him before breaking into the Alligator pen and starting to eat them. In all the chaos, Rachael wakes up and grabs her gun, racing out in time to see the fin. Took a shot but it swam away. While they were surveying the damage, Tyler ridiculing her for thinking it was a shark when the Sheriff shows up. Got a call last night over the gunshot and an officer was already searching the river and finds Jackson’s hat and then his arm. He wants to take Jason in but Jason tells him to come back with a warrant. before leaving to answer a call, says he plans on talking to the Judge and having the shut down. Fueling them to go on the offensive and with the help of the tracking chips from the gators, go to hunt down what did this and save their restaurant.
The story was pretty paint by the numbers. The shark wasn’t a normal shark but one from the depths of the ocean so is stronger because of it. Which is why he can plow through everything and such, but it was a rather fun ride. Most of the characters were fun and felt like a real family. Their love of the restaurant and believed they would fight to keep this going. Had some fun moments, good kills and a fantastic scene with a rope choke to help this movie stand out a bit.
I did like the design of the CGI Shark. Being from the depth allowed some freedom to design a different looking shark, and they came up with a brown scale looking design. Know that some are turned off by CGI but doesn’t bother me. I’m actually kind of glad they gave the shark a reason for being able to do what he did. Sure it is weak and out there, but it’s kind of better than just shrugging their shoulders.
There was one scene in particularly that I want to talk about and it was with the Life Ring Buoy. The guy fell in and they threw a buoy to get him out quick. Attached to a rope, and when the shark ate him and the raft and swam away. He pulled the rope hard and caught Sarah, Natacha Itzel, around the throat. Managed to cut her free, but did a fair amount of damage and she sold it so well. Before that, I wanted everyone on the boat to die they were that annoying, but she sold that injury so well, that she shifted my opinion and wanted her to live and speaks volumes for how good she was in that moment.
It’s kind of a shame we didn’t get enough of Jason Rogel’s Martin and Jeff Chase’s Jason ” Swamp Thing” Broussard. They were so much fun in general, but when they were working together toward the end was great stuff. Jeff chase was generally especially was a fun character. Just seemed believable character who fits perfectly in the role. While Kristy Swanson did a good job as Rachael.
Alright, on to the negatives. We really didn’t need the love angles going on here. Rachael had love interests everywhere. From the Sheriff, Detective Brycen and her Boyfriend Tyler and honestly, Tyler could either be dropped or needed to be toned way, way down, because he becomes obnoxious right away and keeps going and that goes to the party going teens. Outside of Natascha they were just so bad. It wasn’t even a paint by the numbers group we see in these movies. Didn’t even want them to die, just off my screen.
While I wouldn’t rank Swamp Shark to high up on the list of B Movie Shark Films, it was still a fun movie to watch. Perfect kind of movie to kick back and have some good laughs too and when it comes to it with these movies, that is all I ask from it.
As always, I hope you enjoyed and…
Thank You For Reading.
By: Justin Hopkins
It is a shame that it has taken me this long to get around to this classic. Granted my ability to stick to a schedule is dodgy at best but still, They Live probably should have been higher up on the to do list. I grew up with this movie, even before I was a fan of the movies. Due to me being a wrestling nerd and was sold when I heard it stared Roddy Rowdy Piper, and it has remained a movie I continue to go back to, but lets dive in shall we. Discuss the good, the bad and the in between.
The movie kicks off with a man with no name (Nada) arriving to the city in search of a job. Having lost his previous one in Denver. His first day he ended up striking out at Job Placement, but on the second day he lands a job at a construction sight. Where he is spotted by a man named Frank who tells him about a Homeless camp and invites him to come along. after introducing him to Gill and showing him around, they get to talking over a meal and we learn a little bit about Frank. Has a family back home in Detroit and had to come due to the Steel Mills closing down, which left him angry over it. How badly the workers were treated and the overall harshness of life. While Nada still believes in the dream. Works hard and plays by the rules and wait for his chance. Later that night, we see a TV Program a group of people are watching is interrupted by what the one calls a hacker. Warning the people of signals coming through the transmissions and that they are out there and only safe as long as they are hidden. As that is going on, Nada spots the Preacher from the day before mouthing along to it. When the feed cuts out, Gill runs up to the Preacher and drags him to the church across the street. Getting into a visible argument with him. Next time another hack, which was much shorter and Gill again runs off to the Church, with Nada following along. Finding a make shift Lab, a lot of cardboard boxes and Choir noises are actually just a radio. Can hear bits and pieces of a conversation but is caught by the Preacher who tries to warn him, but he is quick to leaves. Seeing a suspicious helicopter flying overhead, which draws them out of the church as well, but leaves as quickly as it arrived. Collecting a pair of binoculars from one of the people at the camp and starts watching them. Much to the chagrin of Frank, who wants nothing to do with this. Not wanting to risk his job and warns Nada to do the same. That night, and still watching, the helicopter returned, with a full police unit, SWAT Team and bulldozer. Overwhelming the Church and Homeless Camp. Brutalizing anyone they could catch, including the Preacher. Nada barely makes it out. Taking shelter in a nearby house with a few others. The next morning he goes back and gets a box from the church, and to his confusion, finds it filled with black sunglasses. Throwing all but one in the trash, putting it on when he hit the street/. To find everything turning black and white. Billboards and signs saying things such as, obey, marry and reproduce and consume, but worse was when he saw and alien disguised as a human and that is where I will leave it for now.
I loved the story of they told so much. Entwining the dangers of Capitalism with aliens. Showing how distracted people are to real issues with consumer goods and the hardships of when they lose everything and are on there on. No one helping and feeling lost and forgotten, despite them trying their hardest and the temptation of betraying everything to avoid that faith vs testing who you really are, and all told so well through the eyes of Nada. A character told so well, that it can go over your head on first viewing that they never give his name, which to me, is amazing feat. Again, speaks on the world around him. Frank gives a diatribe about his problems and Holly tries to trick him later, but no one ever asks for his name.
The action and fight scenes were great. There wasn’t much in the way of gore and the fire fights were fast paced. Showing the importance of them moving quicks and of course, helping differentiate it from the fight between Nada and Frank. Over him trying to get Frank to wear the glasses and Frank wanting none of this, which kickstarts a six minute street fight which was awesome. There was nothing flashy about it. Just two guys trading punches and throwing each other around in an alley. Can see how much time Roddy and Keith David put into making the most brutal looking fight they could and it works perfectly.
Roddy “Rowdy” Piper was brilliant as Nada. Bringing a lot of his natural charisma and charm to the character. Quick witted to throw out a one liner, not all of them stuck, but majority are fantastic. Brought a gritty realism with him. Makes you feel bad for him. A guy willing to take any job and do his best and clinging on to the belief that if he stays the track, it’ll get better. Playing so well off of Keith David. A character who lives in reality. Wanting to keep his head down and not be noticed, despite the anger he has over his situation. George ” Buck” Flowers, incredible as support. Same with Peter Jason and massive praise to Jason Imada, who from what I have read about, played most of the Aliens.
I don’t really have a lot of bad things to say. Some of the jokes didn’t quite stick and Meg Foster came across as a bit to much dead pan for my liking, but none of which broke my immersion all that much so call it in between. I am stretching a lot here, this movie is fantastic is tremendous. Memorable characters, a story that could drop today and still be just a relevant and quotable as they come. If you haven’t seen it make it a must watch as it has [earned it’s title as moniker as a classic. Final Grade S
As always, I hope you enjoyed and….
Thank You For Reading.
By Paul Anthony
Here we are still in the first week of black history month and this week I have been doing some work on Denzel Washington this week, honestly it was more than timing then anything because his latest movie was just released called The little things which please check out and Justin’s reviews regarding that, then I did a actor profile o him during our podcast episode, as I was doing my research on him I came across something that I never notice before and that out of all his films, he has never done a sequel for except one film. Out of 49 films that he has been only one had a sequel in it and that film was none other than this film. With that being said you would have to guess that this film had to be a success if Washington only pick this role to come back to. The first film was released in 2014 and 7 months before that release Sony had already greenlighted a sequel. The film had a 73 million dollar budget but than grossed 192 million so Sony made the right choice, this film was released four years after the film. The budget was pretty much just a few more million dollars and basically grossed the same amount as the first film making it another hit under Washington’s belt. Washington wasn’t the only star in this film others return as well such as Melissa Leo and Bill Pullman but than you had the newcomer Pedro Pascal as well, Now did this film live up to the previous film?
The film starts with McCall (Washington) on a train traveling to Istanbul, basically he is on a mission to rescue a girl that was taken from her mother but the guy is her father nevertheless he completes his mission and returns the girl back to her mom though it appears her mom doesn’t realize this. At the same time Susan and McCall’s former partner Dave York investigates a murder. When Susan returns to her hotel she is then attacked and killed, After some time Dave is greeted by McCall who is shocked to see him since McCall faked his own death. McCall shares information to Dave that he has found and soon after that McCall who works as a Lyft Driver is attacked by assassin who pretends to be an passenger and there McCall learns the truth that Dave is the true one that killed Susan and he opens up on why he did it. McCall sees the rest of his former team is at Dave’s house as well and he tells them he is going to kill them all and the only sad thing is that he only gets to do it once. Never the less McCall keeps his word and in a epic battle kills everyone, including Dave and film ends With McCall returning to his old house.
I did enjoy this film and I did ask in the beginning of this blog if it lived up to the first film. I have to say yes it but it didn’t improve anything, we basically got the same thing and doing it twice is very risky. Don’t get me wrong Washington was great and Pedro carried his weight. The action was on par as the first however the story was lacking. The plot tries be something better than what it really was. The movie seemed like it was leading to bigger things but never did. In the end I am giving it a good B plus for a grade.
By Paul Anthony
First review of the month for me and going with black history month, I decided to review this film because it starred Denzel Washington, who is one of my favorite actors, then you also had the film star Rami Malek, who is also a great talent as well. Last when it comes to stars you also had Jared Leto, who some might think he is a great actor as well, so this film had a lot going for it. Then you had the writer and director John lee Hancock and if you haven’t heard of this name before let me refresh your memory on who this guy is, he’s the director of such films as The Rookie (2002), The Blind Side (2009), Saving Mr. Banks (2013), The Founder (2016) and The Alamo (2004). Just with those four names alone this movie should be great right? Well that’s just it, this might be the case where just maybe all the stars didn’t line up. Though there is some good news and that is Leto did receive nominations for Best supporting Actor from the Golden Globes and the Screen Actors Guild awards. Now, the film was made with a 30 million dollar budget and so far grossed 7.6 million, which was good enough to make the number 1 spot in it’s opening weekend, of course we don’t know what HBO Max’s numbers are so can’t call these films that come out during the pandemic a flop but how did this film really do?
Well let’s look at the plot, the film starts in 1990 when we see a female traveling on an highway when another vehicle starts to taunt her, she pulls over at a gas station which is closed and the driver begins to chase her which she escapes when a trucker stops for her. When then pick a few years later which I am guessing because everything seems to still be in the early 90’s though they don’t make it clear, at this point you just have to assume. Here at this point we meet Kerns County deputy Sheriff Joe Deacon (Washington) who must head to L.A County to get evidence that pertains to a murder case in his county, at this point we meet a young L.A. County homicide detective Jimmy Baxter (Malek) whose working a murder case that reminds Deacon of a case he was once working on that he never got to solve. The two strike up a partnership to solve the case. Deacon is positive that the suspect is Albert Sparma (Leto). Though very little evidence proves this, they still try to prove this guy is the killer but have no such like, until Sparma leads them on a wild goose chase and finally admits he never killed anyone in his life and turns out, he is just obsessed with crime scenes and stories, this makes Baxter mad and kills him with a shovel and Deacon collects everything in Sharma apartments and burns it and to make it seem like they had the right guy afterwards Deacon buys a red barrette and sends it to Baxter, the red barrette was an item that was worn by a murder victim.
Most critics are comparing this film to the hit film seven but basically calling it a knock off. Now I wouldn’t go that far but they do try to make this film seem like its more twisted then it really is but shows us nothing to prove that this film had a lot of twist, basically it tried to be something it’s not. Now I did enjoy the performances of the main stars and I could see why Leto was nominated for best supporting Actor. In the end the film wasn’t horrible but it felt average so I am giving it a C for a rating.
By: Justin Hopkins
Finally, a new movie for me to sink my teeth into. We got The Little Things, with a star cast of Denzel Washington and Rami Malek.. and Jared Leto is there too. While, I would have liked to saw I went in more excited, being the first new movie of 2021 and one viewing of the trailer was enough to get me interested enough. The onslaught of unskippable trailers on YouTube was a bit much, but I was determined to enjoy myself when I sat down to watch it. So, lets dive in and discuss The Little Things, shall we.
The movie kicks us off with a woman just managing to escape from an unknown stalker, by waving down a truck and we jump to one Joe Deacon, a small town deputy who is sent to L.A to pick up evident for a Preliminary Case the next day, only he can’t get the evidence without a signature from Homicide, but they won’t give it to him till tomorrow because they are running a test on it. While he doesn’t seem to be on good terms with the chief, he does have friends who are happy to see him. Once upon a time, he was a hot shot detective who had the highest clearance rate of solved cases, and when Jimmy learns who it is, brings him along to a fresh murder seen, of a Serial Killer that he is struggling to get anything on. During the search, Deacon finds the lookout spot the Killer used and with the condition was in, caused a flashback to a case he once worked that mirrored the current case. When Jimmy drops him back off, they agree to meet for breakfast if he is still there and we jump to Ruth Rathsburn jogging with someone and she goes off alone to go home and a car follows her down the road and her parents report her missing the next day. Which becomes a driving force for Jimmy, why Joe has found a suspect in Albert Sparma. A shady repairman, who is a self proclaimed Crime Buff, who they are determined is the killer and desperately try to prove it to save Ruth and that is where i will leave it for now.
Spoilers ahead. Don’t go on if you want to watch it.
This is a pretty hard movie to put into words and actually going to start with the acting, which I thought were all pretty solid, but aren’t handled well. Denzel is Denzel, he makes the smallest bits feel important and he does great as Joe Deacon. Kind of wish we got more time with Rami Malek. He does good as Jimmy, but a lot of times feels forced. Don’t feel like there is a close enough connection between him and Deacon by the end. I actually did like Jared Leto portrayal of Albert. The guy does creepy well and while it for me it tends to miss a lot, it fits well here. Just wish the story was handled a little better.
They do a good job at building tension and putting pressure on Jimmy, with him wanting to save Ruth and Joe being haunted by his memories. Telling the story of dangers of obsession, but that is kind of where my first issue arises. Yeah, it can be bad getting to focused on this work. Taking nothing away from the stress a detective goes through, but the clock is ticking on Ruth. Kind of expecting Jimmy to be wrapping his mind around it, for at least the first few days to try and save her life and while he shouldn’t be hyper focused on one suspect. The leads are pointing at Albert, who is doing nothing to take the light off him and while I could see him being more laxed on the rules to save Ruth, but not enough for what he will be okay with by the end. I get that would upend his life, but that is not his motivating factor throughout. He wants to give voices to his victims, even if it means taking responsibility for this.
Alright, lets break down the ending, because this has some glaring issues. I get that it isn’t suppose to be a good ending, but they took it from a morbid and dire one. The killer has effectively gotten away. Jimmy killed Albert, who they set up to question whether or not he did it or not. Him and Joe covered it up. Leaving the FBI to chase a ghost and at the very least, will never find Ruth and at it’s worse, murder free to continue killing. If they ended it there, it would be fine, but we didn’t. He sent Jimmy a braid to pass as Ruth’s and give him peace of mind that he did at least kill the right guy. Something that he really does not deserve and Joe once again to stall a murder case and presented in good light for doing so. We should end with a broken and lost Jimmy, because that is the dire ending. Two broken cops who know there is no fixing this. Which would at least be in line with what they are trying to say. At least end with a trapped or dead Ruth to really suck the air out of you.
If you are into crime drama’s and mysteries. You might find something enjoyable here, but this movie really didn’t do anything for me. Had a good premise, with some big name stars but that was about it. Tries way to hard to build up the ending that ends up just falling apart. Final Grade – D
As always, I hope you enjoyed and…
Thank You For Reading.