It seems that every single year around Christmas we are inundated with cutesy family friendly films. While many of these movies can be quite entertaining, sometimes we need something a little more grown up and serious. Well let me tell you, shit doesn’t get much more serious than the Dark Ages. That was back when the average life expectancy was the ripe old age of 30, peasants worked their hands to the bone in return for what can only be described as meager compensation, and there was this thing called the bubonic plague. The bubonic plague, also known as the Black Death, took out over 30% of the population in Europe. So, yeah, all those feel good depictions of knights rescuing damsels in distress don’t really match up to the truth of history. Christopher Smith’s upcoming movie Black Death doesn’t pull any punches in its portrayal of those bleak times. Now I’m not saying that it is historically accurate, I don’t know how many villages actually made deals with demons in exchange for protection from the plague, but Black Death is definitely not a feel good movie. It will have death, most likely in some brutal and cringe inducing ways, and that offers a nice change from all this “everything is great” holiday nonsense. Hopefully Sean Bean will have a higher kill tally in Black Death than he did as Boromir in The Lord of the Rings. I donated to Toys for Tots, now I just want to see something from Santa’s naughty list. Check out the trailer for Black Death below.
Archive for December, 2010
Simon Pegg has cemented himself as one of the best funny men in Hollywood. He is not only hilarious as an actor, but has had success as a writer as well. It seems that Simon Pegg is at his best when he works with writer Edgar Wright and writer/actor Nick Frost. The next Simon Pegg movie, Paul, is actually written by Pegg and Nick Frost, so it already sounds like it will be hilarious. The plot of two nerds finding a smart ass alien voiced by Seth Rogen seems to confirm that assessment. When you watch this trailer, it is confirmed without a doubt.
Yes, Paul looks like it will be great. Now let’s take a look back at some other great moments in Simon Pegg’s career.
Shaun of the Dead
Shaun of the Dead was Simon Pegg’s breakout role. It was an extremely well written movie that perfectly blended humor, zombies, and even some romance. The bromance between Simon Pegg and Nick Frost is what brought Shaun of the Dead together. They were both great, and Nick Frost delivered some big laughs as the dimwitted friend. Simon Pegg proved to the world that he was a funny man for the first time and launched his now successful career of making us laugh.
Nick Frost is very good at playing the dimwitted friend, and he ramped it up a notch from Shaun in the Dead in Hot Fuzz. That is to say Nick Frost’s character Danny Butterman is extremely dimwitted, and it leads to some great comedic moments. Simon Pegg is also great as the gruff no nonsense cop, and the two team up to make one of the best buddy cop movies that pokes fun at buddy cop movies of all time. While there are some definite satirical overtones in Hot Fuzz, it also has some pretty awesome action scenes and showed that Simon Pegg can go from the straight man to funny all on his own with ease.
Run, Fatboy, Run
Run, Fatboy, Run was the first big role Simon Pegg had that didn’t involve him working with Edgar Wright and Nick Frost. While it had already been proven that Simon Pegg fit in perfectly with that creative team, it was his role in Run, Fatboy, Run that showed he could be funny all on his own. It also showed that Simon Pegg could write a hilarious movie with somebody other than Edgar Wright, and this time it was with Michael Ian Black.
How to Lose Friends & Alienate People
How to Lose Friends & Alienate people was not Simon Pegg’s best movie, but it was an important one in his career. This movie came out when Megan Fox was at the peak of her popularity, but Simon Pegg’s performance was not overshadowed by her at all. This could be due to Megan Fox’s actual acting talent, but it proved that Simon Pegg was officially a star in his own right.
Simon Pegg didn’t have the biggest role in Star Trek, but he fit in seamlessly and brought new life to a fan favorite character. He had some great comedic moments as Scotty, and was very believable as an unorthodox genius. More importantly, he showed that he could be part of an amazing cast in what was the definition of a successful blockbuster movie. Only time will tell, but the smart money is on Simon Pegg starring in many more great movies in the future.
It seems like the Pirates of the Caribbean franchise is going to be one of those movie franchises that will be milked for every last cent the studio can get out of it, despite the fact the movies have gone downhill since the first one. The one constant that Disney is counting on is Johnny Depp being entertaining as hell as Captain Jack Sparrow. The upcoming movie, Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides, will be the first installment in the franchise without Keira Knightley as Elizabeth Swann or Orlando Bloom as Will Turner. I’m not too upset by the loss of Orlando Bloom, but losing Keira Knightley is a little upsetting. She was by far the most attractive member of the cast. Filling in for Orlando Bloom will be nobody, that way Keira Knightley’s replacement, the smoking hot Penelope Cruz, and Captain Jack Sparrow can have an onscreen romance unhampered by girly men. I think Keira Knightley and Penelope Cruz are both fine looking female leads, go ahead and tell me you wouldn’t be happy watching either one of them:
For those of you still interested in trivial details such as the plot of the movie, On Stranger Tides focuses on Captain Jack Sparrow’s hunt for the fountain of youth and facing off against the infamous pirate Blackbeard. I am assuming the he will succeed so Disney has an excuse to use him in movies from now until he becomes a marauding space pirate kidnapping Martian ladies. I am sure you would much rather watch the trailer than hear me describe it to you, so here it is. One thing is for sure, Johnny Depp is still great as Jack Sparrow.
Marvel has been putting out quite a few superhero movies in preparation for their big Avengers movie event, where all their heroes will be brought together. The next installment by the Marvel movie men will be Thor, Marvel’s take on the Norse god of thunder. The basic take on Thor here is that Asgard is a realm outside of earth with technology so advanced that it is basically indistinguishable from magic. Since the Asgardians visited earth and appeared so advanced, they were worshipped as gods by the Norse. Parts of the movie will take place in Asgard as Thor has the Norse god equivalent of teenage rebellion and part of the movie will take place on earth when Thor’s dad Odin puts him in Norse god timeout. Wherever Thor is taking place, it looks great, especially the scenes with Natalie Portman. Chris Hemsworth is also a suitably large Thor, I can totally see a man of his size kicking wholesale ass.
If you were not blown away by that trailer then I don’t think we can be friends. It has Anthony Hopkins as a firm but fair Odin, Chris Hemsworth as a petulant/heroic/awesome Thor, and Natalie Portman as the hot nurse. The scenes all look great visually, especially the shots of Asgard. All in all, it looks like Thor has everything it needs to be Marvel’s next big hit and to cause even more excitement for the upcoming Captain America and Avengers movies.
Dr. Drew has become one of the most well known doctors on television, and he might be the most famous guy on tv that actually has a license to practice medicine with the possible exception of Ken Jeong. He hosts shows such as Celebrity Rehab, Sex Rehab, and probably every other show you have heard of that ends in Rehab. He also hosts the radio program Loveline and has done guest appearances on numerous talk shows and less serious shows like Crank Yankers. Mainly Dr. Drew is known for helping people, and I think we can all applaud that, except for the people who think he is simply after fame. Wherever you stand on that, Jimmy Kimmel had a great Dr. Drew themed video during his talk show. If you like dubbed over cartoons you will love this.
The Dr. Seuss/Dr. Drew connection is pretty funny, although I can’t really picture the Cat in the Hat helping to stop chaotic behavior. Having the Grinch involved was a nice little touch for the holiday season. Jimmy Kimmel Live has cemented itself as one of the highlights of late night television with skits like this. We can only hope they keep on producing skits like this.
Do you love seeing movies as soon as they come out? Do you hate sitting with strangers to watch movies and having your feet stick to the floor? Most importantly, do you have at least $20,000 burning a hole in your comically large pockets? If you answered yes to all three of these questions, Prima Cinema has something for you. For a mere $20,000 installation fee and for $500 per movie, you can get movies streaming to your television on the same day that they come out in theaters. Now you can truly enjoy having your own home movie theater!
While it would be nice to enjoy new movies from the comfort of your own home, the price of this service severely limits the potential customer base. I mean sure, handsome internet writers can afford something like this, but for most people that price is outrageous. I suppose you could invite people over and charge them to watch movies at your place, but soon enough your floors will be as sticky as a regular movie theater unless you want to spend that extra money on a cleaning staff. While it is a very cool idea, it is definitely aimed at a high income market. Maybe if it catches on there will be more affordable options, but for now I will have to wait for all the super rich readers of HumorDistrict to try this service out and report back how well it works.
Mel Gibson will be starring in an upcoming movie hilariously titled The Beaver. The Beaver has Mel Gibson as a cripplingly depressed man estranged from his family who will only talk to people through a beaver puppet. I personally thought that the first jokes about this movie would be about Mel Gibson being elbow deep in a beaver, but I guess I am just crude. It seems the folks over at Funny or Die have decided to take a different approach. Before we look at the altered trailer, look over the original.
I guess if you have a pretty morbid sense of humor, the original trailer is pretty funny. Similarly funny in a messed up way were Mel Gibson’s rants against the mother of his child, Oksana Grigorieva. What better way to create hilarity than mixing the two together? Be warned, the following trailer contains a lot of offensive language and references to oral sex. If you aren’t into that kind of thing, here is a website you might enjoy more. For those of you who like to laugh, Funny or Die presents The Beaver.
As you have probably noticed, Thanksgiving has come and gone. That of course means we have been inundated with everything Christmas related. From television to the radio to our showoff neighbor’s front yard, there is no escaping the holiday season. Television specials might be the guiltiest party, whether it is Christmas themed specials of shows or the same Christmas movies played over and over starting the day after Thanksgiving. Now don’t get me wrong, I’m no Grinch. Some of these Christmas Specials are true holiday classics that can be enjoyed each and every year. Others are abominations that make me want to tell children everywhere there is no Santa so that we stop celebrating Christmas and never have to see these terrible Christmas themed movies ever again. Here are some of the worst.
The Star Wars Holiday Special
Do you speak Wookie? if you answered that question with a yes, please contact me, because I would really like to know what was said during the long conversations the Wookies have in The Star Wars Holiday Special that didn’t even have subtitles. I would also like to know what Bea Arthur was doing there and why Han Solo feels like hugging everything instead of being the gruff rebel who shoots first that we have come to know and love. The only thing The Star Wars Holiday Special does is leave me with questions, the biggest one being why this was ever allowed to be made. It makes Jar Jar Binks seem like a good idea by comparison.
A Chipmunk Christmas
A Chipmunk Christmas started off like a pretty generic Christmas special. Alvin and the chipmunks sing a myriad of joyful Christmas songs, Dave yells a lot, people get hugs and presents, pretty standard Christmas fare. The twist here is how Alvin learns that he shouldn’t be so greedy during the Christmas season. A child dying of cholera teaches Alvin the true meaning of Christmas. That is just messed up, kids dying, especially kids dying of freaking cholera, should not be portrayed in Christmas specials which are obviously aimed towards kids. I guess we should be happy the chipmunks didn’t burst into song about the debilitating effects of cholera.
The Smurfs Christmas Special
First off, The Smurfs were terrible already. Why they are making a Smurfs movie is beyond me, but back to the point. You remember how the Chipmunks Christmas Special had a kid with cholera in it? Well the Smurfs start their bit of holiday cheer off by killing a kid’s grandfather in a sleigh crash. Merry Christmas! I could probably get past that, we can just assume the grandfather had lived a long and fulfilled life. What I can’t forgive is how the Smurfs constantly sing songs that are just four poorly written lines repeated over and over and over. I wish Gargamel had eaten every single one of those blue idiots.
He-Man and She-Ra: A Christmas Special
He-Man and She-Ra had cartoons for the sole purpose of selling their action figures. It comes as no surprise that He-Man and She-Ra would try to collect on the holiday season and do some cross promoting. What does come as a surprise is the fact that instead of beating Skeletor to a bloody pulp, He-Man and She-Ra teach him the importance of caring about others. He is Skeletor! He doesn’t care about anything except conquering Eternia! I call shenanigans right now. I guess the real weird part of this Christmas special is the two kids from earth hanging out with a muscular guy who obviously waxes his chest and wears nothing but a speedo at all times, but we won’t get into that right now.
The Walking Dead on AMC has been wildly successful through its first five episodes, and it looks like its popularity is only growing as the sixth episode and season finale draw closer. Obviously people have enjoyed the episodes which have been written so far, as The Walking Dead was approved for a second season around the same time the second episode came out. That fact makes the announcement that Executive Producer Frank Darabont has released the entire writing staff for season 2 quite interesting. The obvious question here is why Darabont feels he needs to make such a drastic change on a show that has been so well received? On the surface it seems like a drastic and unnecessary move, but I have a feeling that Darabont knows exactly what he is doing.
The first thing to realize here is how involved Frank Darabont is in the creation of the scripts. Darabont has either written or rewritten almost all of the scripts for season 1, with the exception of an episode written by the creator of The Walking Dead comic book, Robert Kirkman. This lets us know that Darabont knows his way around a zombie script, but he won’t be the only writing even with the entire writing crew gone. Darabont’s plan is to have freelancers write the scripts that he doesn’t, so we could see some more Robert Kirkman episodes. It doesn’t seem like the loss of the writing staff will have too much of an impact on future episodes of The Walking Dead, and as of right now Frank Darabont can do no wrong with this series.