By Paul Anthony
It has been 12 long years since the last film in this series, castmates have gotten order and had moved on and it hasn’t been the same since Ryan Dunn passed away. Just looking at Bam who once was a star and now got kicked out of the franchise that made him a star. From time to time I think we all would decide to turn on a jackass film regardless of it being 1,2 or even 3. There were talks of part four right after three came out. Jackass 4ever had just a budget of 10 million and managed to make 80 million, which makes it the second lowest only to the very first film. This film also introduces to the new cast members or as I like to call them the next generation. Here we have new members Sean “Poopies” Mclnerney, Zach Holmes, Jasper Dolphin, Eric Manaka and Rachel Wolfson. you add them to the original stars minus Bam and of course Dunn and you think you would have something special.
Now usually here is where we usually talk about the plot but there isn’t a plot. The movie is just full of pranks and stunts and celebrities that are fans of the franchise joining for some of the stunts, that’s the simple part but how can we judge this film? Easy by the stunts themselves and the cast. It made sense to have new cast members come in since the old crew were no doubt old and moved on with their lives, But the problem was this felt way too random. I can see maybe introducing a new cast for third film and having them get the torch for this film. Or even doing the show Jackass again first to introduce them. Instead, they are thrown at us and that is it. The stunts are what makes a Jackass film basically a Jackass film but here it seemed like they took a step back with the stunts and that to me hurt the film, now I understand there will be a 4.5 film because they did say they had filmed so much material but maybe that material should have been added to this film. As for the old cast, well no doubt this film was a passing of the torch kind of deal and given their ages the stunts and pranks were weaker than before minus Johnny Knoxville’s stunt with the bull which this time around ended poorly for him because he had suffered some major injuries which pretty much ends his career. The best stunt of the film was the cup test which Danger Ehren had to perform and suffered a rupture in his right testicle.
I am not saying this film was the worse of the bunch but no doubt that this film took a step back but with a younger cast now and maybe add a few more members this franchise can move into the next generation, how do I rate this film? Well, I have to give it an C or just call it an average film in the franchise. I will say knowing that there is a younger cast makes wonder what the future will bring but we have to see what happens next. We do know now that a new Jackass series is coming, that was announced just two days ago on May 3rd and it will be on paramount+
By Paul Anthony
Earlier in the week, I got a chance to review the first film in this series after some time of wanting to watch it, so it is only natural that we talk about the sequel for this edition of Saturday Sequel. Now like many films in the early part of 2021, they were postpone since early 2020. Even now it is hard to talk about a film’s success because most studios have their own streaming services and so forth. This film was released in theaters and then 45 days later on Paramount plus. Now the film’s budget had grown a lot compared to the first one. The total budget for this film was 61 million compared to 21 million. In a pandemic box office the film still managed to be a successful film by grossing 296 million dollars. yes it was down from the first film but because of the situation, we won’t compare the numbers. The Main cast pretty much returns including Krasinski in a cameo role. The film did add a new main cast member in Cillian Murphy. Now most critics praised this film and even giving it higher remarks then the first film which is honestly rare these days but let’s check out the plot.
The film stars at day 1 where we see the Abbott family enjoying their oldest son’s baseball game, Lee arrives late though he was picking up some fruit and caught a glimpses of a news report of attack but blows it off. At the game the fans notices an explosion in the sky and soon after begins flee the ballpark and right after they do, the creatures start to attack everyone that makes a noise. Then we skip to the present and the family is on the move since their house was destroyed at the end of the first film. during their travels they break into a old abandoned steel foundry. But Marcus steps into a bear trap which he has no other choice but to scream in pain and at that point a man saves them and is to be revealed as the family’s old friend Emmett, who tells them they need to leave soon because they can’t stay here with him. Evelyn pleads with him. At the same time Regan starts to realize the song that plays on the radio is a clue and determines to find help and armed with the knowledge on how to defeat them she sneaks away and soon after Emmett goes after her to save her but in the process she explains the clues and at first Emmett seems like he is still shady and leaves Regan with no weapons or anything only to come back to their hideout and reveals he found a boat. The two travel to the dock and are basically attack by feral humans. As a last ditch effort to survive Emmett makes noise to attract the creatures. during this battle we learn as well as the characters that these creatures can’t swim and travel to this island where they see people living as if nothing ever happened. There they are told that the coast guard put out signals to tell people that and now Emmett tells Regan that she was right about him that he is nothing like Lee but She is just like her father. However the creatures manage to travel by boat and begin to attack the people but at a radio tower Regan manages to turn her hearing aid and once again kills the creatures and sends out a warning and plays the sound of her hearing aid and the film ends with the idea that the humans will get ready to fight.
I have to say that this is no doubt a great follow up and I really mean that. This film decided to built on the first and had a good story to go along with it. Everyone played a good role in this film and that was great to see. The mystery and the emotion continued to be there with the right combination of both. Them adding Cillian Murphy was a plus for sure and still manage to add Krasinski was a good touch and once again only giving the creatures a small amount of screen time was a great touch. In the end I am giving this film an A+ and label this as a must watch film. I am truly looking forward to the third film!!
By Paul Anthony
It is no secret that here at SmashWriting, we love to review movies and there are plenty of movies to review so there is always a backlog of movies and for me this A Quiet Place has been on my to watch list some time. I seen what the critics were saying and they all seem to be praising this film. The film starred real life married couple John Krasinski and wife Emily Blunt. The film wasn’t just a hit with the critics but fans alike. The film was made from a 22 million dollar budget but was able to make 350.3 million in its theater run making it a true hit. Now the concept of the film plus having a deaf character made it interesting because Krasinski didn’t want to cast a non-deaf actress to play his on screen daughter who was deaf, so they cast Millicent Dimmonds, which in my eyes was pretty cool to see. Now if you haven’t seen this film then please note that this review will contain spoilers!
The film starts with them showing that this film is taking place on day 89, here we meet the Abbott family, Wife Evelyn, Husband Lee, daughter Regan, oldest son Marcus and youngest son Beau. We learn that 89 days ago, aliens from outer space. These creatures who are blind but have hypersensitive hearing which forces the human race to live in silence, but add insult injury these creature’s skin is some type of armor that makes them immune to bullets and explosives leaving the human race defenseless. One day as the family is on the move the young son who was playing with his shuttle toy the sound is activated and before lee could save him the creature kills the young sound. We then skip ahead to a year later, the family is still struggling to survive but Evelyn is pregnant and almost to her due date, Regan who gave her brother that toy has been guilting herself over her brother’s death and feels that her father no longer loves her because of it. One day Lee takes Marcus’s on a hunting trip to learn how to take care of the family, Lee as it turns out is an engineer which he has been using his skills to learn how to fight these creatures and to restore his daughter’s hearing. Lee reveals the creatures travels in three’s and as long as there is background noise such as waterfall, and at that point Marcus tells Lee how Regan been feeling. Back at Home Evelyn goes into labor and on her way to the basement she steps on a nail and screams which alerts the creatures. at some point the family gets separated and it becomes Lee’s mission to save his kids which causes him life but not before he tells Regan that he loves her and always has. The kids return home to Evelyn and see their new baby brother. But fight is on and Regan realizes from before that her radio frequency from her hearing aid annoys the creatures and exposes a weak spot which they are able to kill it. Evelyn looks on the camera and see the other two on their way and now know their weakness the film ends with the mother-daughter team no longer afraid and prepared to fight as the film ends
Wow so where do I start? Let me say this , the film being nearly all silent was something new and refreshing and not seeing the creatures until the end really kept the suspense. The acting was on point, each death you felt it as well. You didn’t know too much about the family but you grew to love them. The one negative I had with this film was the way to defeat them made sense the whole but no one thought about it? Once the human race learned that these creatures could hear anything, making such a loud high pitch sound would have made sense once they knew. Besides that point the film was a good film in the end, I am giving this film an A for a rating and looking forward to watching the sequel.
By Paul Anthony
Welcome to a new monthly series we recently just created and this month is the first blog of its kind. Now we know what Doppelgänger means but how much do we really see it in Hollywood? The answer may surprise when we say a lot. Now in this series we will review two films that are a lot alike but are not the same, so if it is a remake or reboot, then they do not account. It is no secret that I am big into Greek mythology and of course one of my favorite heroes is Hercules, now though the name is more associated with Greek mythology that name is actually the Roman hero rather than the Greek hero Herakles, however they are the same person but for now we will continue to refer to him as Hercules. Over the years there have been plenty of movies that aren’t reboots regarding this character however for today we are taking a look at the Legend of Hercules and Hercules both came out in 2014 and honestly only 6 month apart and by two different studios, nevertheless even back then I thought this was crazy and weird all at the same time. This must have been an actually case of who can do it better, so who did it better? Let’s first talk about the Legend of Hercules.
The Legend of Hercules or also Known as Hercules: The Legend begins, was released in January of 2014 and film had a budget of 70 million and only made around 61 million. The film starred Kellan Lutz as Hercules. Though the film was a box office bomb the audience still gave it a B-. In this film, the story starts at 1200 BC where we meet a young King Amphitryon who invades Argos and takes over the kingdom after a battle, the queen Alcmene who truly hates her husbands prays to Hera to have son whose doesn’t belong to her husband, Hera grants this request and soon after gives birth to two sons Iphicles and Hercules though he is given the fake name of Alcides. Twenty years go by and both boys grow up into different men though Iphicles becomes a cold hearted coward and Alcides grow to be a warrior and respectable person, But they are both interested in HeBe who is the princess of Crete but she only wants Hercules. The King though has set up an arrange Marriage between Iphicles and Hebe and too make sure this happens the King sends Hercules off to battle, to get him out of the picture, turns out this was nothing more than set up to kill Hercules. When it is believed that Hercules did in fact die, the king believed that the plan has worked. Hercules becomes a slave and must battle for his freedom which he does and sets his sights on returning home to stop this wedding. One night the king finds out the truth regarding Hercules’s true father which he then decides to kill his wife. When Hercules returns home and begins to free people from the King and even has some of the army behind him, he decides to take on his step dad and brother with a little help from his real dad in a form of lightening strikes from a sword. In the end it is Hercules and Hebe who marry and become king and queen even have a son together. The Movie ends with Hercules watching over his Kingdom.
Now Lets jump to the one that came out 6 months later and starred Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson as Hercules, the film had a budget of 100 million and mange to gross 244 million, making it an box office success. Even the reviews turned out to be better than the other film, so all seems to be well but was it truly better? Let’s look at the plot. The film is based on the comic book series Hercules: The Thracian Wars.
In This film we meet Hercules who is a leader of a band of mercenaries which include Amphiaraus, Autolycus, Tydeus, Atalanta and his nephew Iolaus. In this film people do not believe that he is the son of Zeus even though he’s very strong. Overall the film still doesn’t make it clear if he truly is or isn’t and some even dispute his 12 labors though in the end credits we learn that his team did help him with the 12 labors. one day in 358 BC, after a mission they are approached by a princess who wants them to come to Thrace and help train their army to defeat the evil warlord Rhesus. Of Course Hercules agrees. Soon he begins to train them but the King of Thrace informs them that the army must be ready now because Rhesus is close in central Thrace where the king claims that Rhesus has used magic and turn the tribe there against them. Though Hercules and the army defeats the local tribe they also lose half the army, which once they return home Hercules and his team continue to train the army, then the war starts and Hercules does manage to defeat Rhesus and they take him a prisoner, there Hercules sees the princess show pity to Rhesus and wants to know why and there Hercules learns he has been fighting on the wrong side and demands answers from the king who does admit it and tries to have Hercules killed but fails and Hercules pretty much saves the day in the end.
Okay I will have to say both of these movies were basically on par with each other. The use of CGI for the places were cheap and honestly both would have greatly benefitted from filming on location type of thing. The stories were both wrong in their own ways with certain elements being true to the mythology and I’ll give a few examples. In The Legend Hercules is a prince and doesn’t have a good relationship with Iphicles or the king. That incorrect Though Amphitryon was once a king , he didnt die as a king nor did Hercules ever become a king in fact Hercules had a great relationship with his stepdad and half brother. Hercules did marry Hebe but not until he descended to Mount Olympus to be by his father’s side, they did have kids together, though Hercules wasn’t born in 1200 BC more like 800 years later. The Rock’s film overall story wasn’t correct but more parts were correct, They did explain that he killed his first wife and children in a fit of rage that Hera caused him thus doing the 12 labors. traveling with his nephew was another correct thing but him having his own team wasn’t true though he was a part of the Argonauts. Though in 358 Bc he would have truly been dead as a human because he would be 100 plus years old, though they did get his outfit and Weapons right. In The end its the Rock’s film that wins this mostly because of the Rock’s performance, he to me saved this film! SO the winner would be Hercules (2014) though both films were basically average.
By Paul Anthony
I guess we can call this Eddie Murphy weekend here at SmashWriting and I say that because today I am reviewing his film and on Saturday I am reviewing the sequel to this film as well which is titled Coming 2 America, creative huh? In the 1980’s Murphy was as hot as anyone with having a good stand up career and being in hit after hit, basically for the new age people he was Kevin Hart of the 80’s. The movie stars Eddie Murphy but the cast was actually stacked with talent, you had of course Arsenio Hall, James Earl Jones, Shari Headley and John Amos. The film also had Louie Anderson and a younger Samuel L Jackson. Though this film didn’t need Anderson, it should be noted that the studio which is Paramount requested that there needed to be a white person in this film, and truly no there was no need for that. The film was released in the summer of 1988, the film had a budget of just 36 million and managed to make 350 million, now this is the part where I say sequel would happen but we know that is truly the case. I have to admit its been awhile since I watched the film so I needed to watch it over again. Well let’s waste no time and check out the plot.
The plot is simple Eddie Murphy plays the prince of an African country who must get married to a princess which his father has already arranged but this is not what the prince wants and during announcement he decides that he wants to find his own bride though he does not exactly say that. He basically tells his father he wants to go to America to basically have sex. So him and his servant travel to New York to begin the process though they agree that no one should know their true identity. Instead they act like they goat keepers. After failed attempts to meet the queen to be at clubs the two attend a fundraiser where the prince finds the perfect woman for him and her name is Lisa however he must fight for her love because she is already and though he managed to win her heart, he must reveal the truth to her and tell her he is a prince. At this point his father has come to America to find him and bring back home and is shocked to find out what he has been up. Once the prince tells Lisa the truth she runs away and basically he becomes sad and returns home with his family to marry his arranged bride though he is shocked to see that it is Lisa and everything ends well.
Okay now this film is suppose to be a comedy and to be honest I did catch myself laughing at few jokes. “The royal penis is clean” was funny line as well as the good morning neighbors, I never been a fan of Murphy being different characters though they had their moments. With it being a comedy I didn’t expect much of anything else regarding the plot. In the end honestly it was a hit but I am giving it a B but still enjoyed watching it!!
By Paul Anthony
Let’s be honest here, 2020 has not been a good year to all of us. Here we are going through a world wide virus that has no cure yet and here in the states we are going through a civil unrest regarding law enforcement and African Americans. No doubt the footages, we have all seen have made feel terrible with what police get away with. For decades and that is 30 years to be exact the show Cops would air which is a reality show where cameras follow police in the line duty, the show nonetheless made us laugh more than anything but Paramount announced that due to police brutality the show would be canceled. The through the years may have had the viewers laughing at people but critics often slammed the show for airing people personal issues for basically pure fun. Cops the show has had many issues prior to leading up to this even before everything happen, the show faced many lawsuits because of the footage they were using through it’s history and that footage was the stereotypes and that is White cops and Black people being who they arrested. In reality it was the show and station that was putting the footage together and seeing what draws the crowds in and we all got brain washed into watching it. heck I didn’t even notice to be honest, it wasn’t until much later when the police would approve the footage that the show would be allowed to use. From what I could, tell that is when the issues seem to calm down. Now shortly after Paramount canceled the show. A&E and Discovery also decided to cancel their shows.
A&E hit show was called Live PD, which was basically the same as cops except they claim the footage was live and would have experts in the studio explaining the situation which I thought that was a good way to help us all understand the situation. Sadly I don’t know much about Discovery’s show which was called “Body Cam” Now I don’t know how it is different from the other shows but it is now canceled.
The main question now is will these shows return or no? Paramount has said they have no plans to bring the show back, as of right now I haven’t seen much about the other shows to give a clear answer to that question but in the back of my mind, I would have to say yes they will return and here is why. Ratings, that is the thing we have to remember, if a network sees that that they can make money trust me they will put the item out there to make money. Now we live in the age where there are so many cameras and I think these shows will help us catch the good guys and the bad guys regardless of which side of the law that the bad buys are on. I believe the studios need to have morale rights to help out when they have footage of someone being in the wrong but in the end I guess only time will tell.
By Paul Anthony
In this blog, we are starting something new for Saturdays. This blog series is called Sequel Saturday, where we review a sequel that we haven’t reviewed yet, but the catch is the movie can only be a sequel. In other words no remakes or reboots, so without waiting any longer let’s get started.
In our other series Classic 13 Justin started the series off with none other then Friday the 13th which came out on May 9th 1980, kind of funny they didn’t find an actually Friday the 13th to release the film now obviously the movie was a hit, even more to think the movie was made from a half of million and grossed nearly 60 million dollars, so it was only normal to expect a sequel.
Part 2 came out only 11 months later on April 30th 1981 and on a budget of 1.2 million and grossed 21.7 million dollars. Though it made money it made far less then the previous film. One of the reasons behind this could be Slasher fatigue, better films around the release date and let’s not mention the previous film was only 11 months ago, in such a short time can hurt the film’s gross.
Part two was on par with the first film in my eyes at least, the only difference was the killer, in the first film it was his mother, however in this film it was in fact Jason who we were to believe to be dead in 1958 in which case we learn that wasn’t true. Changing the back story wasn’t a good idea this early in the series, it was clear that they did this as they went, it would be a trend that they would continue to do throughout the series. The film begins with a recap and we learn it was only two months ago and Alice the survivor was trying to recover mentally from the events, she becomes Jason first kill ever, ending her story and pretty much the only female character to go from one film to the next. The film then skips 5 years and and we meet Ginny who the film focuses on. Paul who is her apparent boyfriend is a lead counselor and training a group of older teens. There the killings begin one by one until it becomes just Ginny and Paul where they fight off Jason for good at least that we are left to believe until Jason grabs Ginny through the window, Though she wakes up and is being put in an ambulance.
Now two things that stood out to me from this film, one Ginny explain the loop hole with Jason being alive and growing up and it actually made sense and the second thing was Killing of Alice, I felt like there could have been more of a story there but to end it right there just ruined a story. In the end I do have to give this film a B minus, it wasn’t the best slasher sequel but it wasn’t the worse either.
By Paul Anthony
I remember the hype for the film IT which came out in 2017, the people were pouring their emotions out that this “Remake” would hurt the franchise of IT. People failed to remember that IT from the early nineties was a mini series that was later converted into a movie format. So back to the story well the film came out and it blew our mind and we saw a classic in front of us. Now that film set the bar high for any Stephen King movies then it was announced Pet Sematary would be having a reboot. People were excited heck I was one of them, I saw the first trailer and it was the only trailer I ever saw and i knew I wanted to review this movie.
Well the dust has settled and I have to be honest I don’t think it was even on the same level IT and to me that is a shame. I don’t want to say this film was bad but the truth is that it could have been better and it was a roller coaster ride. It started the way it should and reached it peak and then fell hard. If you are looking for the jump scares this film which is a basic element any horror movie should have. Next I did enjoyed the quality of acting which was led by the talent of Jason Clarke which I am big fan of the talent he brings to the table. John Lithgow as Jud seemed to be slightly out-of-place but that rest more on the casting rather than himself. The Story seemed to be on the track but certain points in the story seemed to be rushed to get to the end of the movie. The run time was only one hour and forty minutes which may have explain the issues in the story usually theses problems go hand in hand. The effects were just about average though this was one scene where it did look like it was poorly done, since I don’t do spoilers I will let you figure it out. If you are a fan of the book and the 89 movie then you will see some changes in the two films which you may not like, for example the relationship between Louis and Jud is different in this film then the first. once again you can decide on which is better.
I am a fan of a good story and music for a horror both can really help sell a good scary movie in this case both seemed to be average which was just not good enough for the hype that was surrounding this film.
The Movie was made on 21 million dollar budget and based on friday night numbers made 10 million so the movie won’t be number 1 but could still make it’s budget by the end of the weekend and by the end of its run could be on the same pace as the 89 film. In All I would say if you have the time go and see it but for me I am giving it two of five stars and even label this as a miss.
By Paul Anthony
Some would say going to the movies is the thing of the past here in the States. Well 2018 are in and the numbers proves that at least last year that was not the case. The numbers also prove that if you produce a good film people will go out to the movies and not do something else. Last year was one of those years where it seems like so many good movies came out and with that being said 2018 set a new record. Last Year Hollywood made 11.9 billion dollars, so I would say business is doing just fine.
In 2018 there were 140 films that made a difference, now within those films Disney released 13 films, Warner Bros released 49 films, Sony released 28 films, Universal released 38 films and then there is Fox with 17 films and Paramount releasing 12 films. Disney may have only released 13 films but they lead the way with 3.092 billion in the Domestic box office. Universal was close with 1.959.76 billion, Warner Bros was next at 1.940.69 billion. Then Sony at 1,283.72 billion and Paramount at a low 757 Billion.
If we think these numbers are just a fluke then guess again because these studios have some big titles coming out this year and could even top 2018. Disney has films like Captain Marvel, Dumbo, Avengers: EndGame, Aladdin, Toy Story 4, The Lion King, Artemis Fowl, Frozen 2 and Star Wars 9. Warner Bros has titles like The Lego Movie 2, Shazam, Detective Pikachu, Mine Craft, Godzilla king of the Monsters, Shaft, IT 2, Joker and the gold Finch and another Conjuring film. Sony could have a great year as well with titles like Men in Black: International, Spider-Man: Far from Home, ZombieLand 2 and a third Jumanji film. Universal might have an off year with small titles like US and Happy Death Day 2U but could rebound with titles like How to Train Your Dragon three and Hobbs and Shaw as well as The Secret Life of pets part two. This could Be Fox.s last year before they join Disney and they will ride the Marvel way with Dark Phoenix and New Mutants and Alita. Paramount is banking on films like What Men What, Pet Sematary, A Terminator film, Rocket Man, Dora explorer and Sonic.
Now we know these titles sound good but could flop we can look at Alita right now though it open at number one the numbers haven’t been there just yet. But it is hard to believe with certain titles won’t do good or even great but in any case let’s sit back and enjoy the year.