Threads that Open to a world of snark / comments tripping down the page …
The only movie news worth talking about is the opening of Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy in theaters this weekend. Adapted from one of John le Carre’s most well-received novels, it stars a female hipster’s sexual fantasy of British stars: Gary Oldman, Colin Firth, Mark Strong, Tom Hardy, Benedict Cumberbatch. It’s one Fassbender away from an estrogen bomb.
In fallen heroes news, we salute two pop culture work horses: Jerry Robinson, comic book legend and creator of The Joker; and Harry Morgan, famous for his roles on “Dragnet” and “M.A.S.H.” Keep being sardonic in heaven, you two.
Could Colonel Potter uncover the psychopathic clown hiding in his unit? Or is there something we missed? Sound off in the comments, for this is your … Open Thread.
Other movie news: did anybody see the “Dark Knight Rises” prologue that ran in advance of the new “Mission: Impossible” movie? How was it? The “Dark Knight Rises” footage, I mean. I don’t really care about the new MI movie.
And lest we forget: “New Year’s Eve” is opening this weekend too. Don’t everybody get excited at once.
I actually do care about the new MI movie, but only because I’m curious about how Brad Bird handled live actors outside of a recording studio. I’m not expecting Ratatouille though.
I do have plans to see TTSP when I return home for the holidays, as well as the other film Mr. Cumberbatch will be in this December, War Horse. Why? Because I am what certain fans of a certain celebrity call ourselves: a Cumberbitch. I also see this as doing my cinematic duty, since TTSP has such a jolly good ensemble cast*, meaning Oscar nods may happen**; and War Horse has already been declared a nominee by various movie blogs I’ve seen, and this is by people that have only seen the trailers. So yes, I’m investigating for critical purposes, of course… Ahem.
Lee, I was veritably devastated when I found out that prologue would be in front of a Tom Cruise movie, and another MI, to wit. But let’s be real- it’ll be put online sooner or later. Or probably even sooner rather than later. Mayhap not 100% legitimately for the sooner. But I highly doubt WB will not post it of their own volition somewhere at some point before the movie comes out.
This does lead to a curiosity. So all of the videos from the set, taken by onlookers and fans and passerby. Those are still up. It’s not like WB doesn’t know about them- it plays into their viral marketing strategy. But the prologue is a different type of footage- not fan-taken, but studio produced and finalized. As such, would WB stick with its previous modus operandi by seemingly turning the other cheek? Or will it be sure that all leaked clips from the prologue get taken down so it can control the inevitable explosion on the internet by releasing the prologue officially?
I’m glad you mentioned Robinson, I had an obit from The Mary Sue I was going to post in case you didn’t. Even if you’re not a fan of Batman, the cultural significance of the Joker (and to a lesser degree, Robin) is unavoidable. It’s like Justin Beiber.
Whoa… if only I could use Photoshop.
Anyway, point: Robinson’s contribution to comics and, ultimately, the popular culture as a whole (I wouldn’t go so far as to say zeitgeist, since it’s not really the mood so much as the details) will carry on. Villains in the future will inevitably be compared to the Joker, while sidekicks will be compared to Robin. And I like to hope that someday comics will be considered just another form of literature so that those comparisons won’t just be by comic readers or people using the general knowledge of the characters that has circulated, but literature classes and AP exams or what-have-you will have them as part of the syllabus/requirements/etc. When and if that happens, a contributing factor would definitely have to be some of Robinson’s characters.
ALSO! Did anyone else watch Neverland on SyFy***? And does anyone plan on watching Snowmageddon?
*I don’t know if it’s a “female hipster” thing, per se, so much as just a fascination with accents that a lot of Americans have. Don’t American men think “accents are hot” just as often as women? I don’t think being “hipster” precludes the fascination/fixation/whatever with accents, is what I’m saying.
**This very well could be because of the above note, too.
***I still die inside when typing or saying it that way.
I do enjoy Perich’s description of TTSS (hehe, that looks like TITS, hehe – TITS also happens to be the acronym for a popular restaurant/sports bar chain in Boston. We’re classy like that.)
The casting IS a female hipster’s delight in my humble opinion, but I do believe you don’t have to be a female (or gay male) hipster to enjoy good-looking men with British accents. That particular enjoyment is open to the masses, this is AMERICA, dammit.
I’m also going out on a limb and saying that Perich just mentioned female hipsters because the OTI site in general does, of course, enjoy talking about the hipster phenomenon. Who doesn’t?
But… but… doesn’t the fact that it’s open to the masses make it… well, not hipsterism? Because hipsterism is about what I guess you could call a positive otherization. Like, setting oneself apart deliberately in a self-congratulatory kind of way. “I know about that and you don’t, so neener-neener-neener.” If the masses are all doing it or should be allowed to do it (in this case, the “it” being enjoying accents), that can’t really hipsterism… can it? Maybe we have different definitions of hipsterism, then. What’s yours?
Here’s the Urban Dictionary Definition of a “Hipster”:
(I was going to post it, but the definition is WAY too long)
I identify myself as a hipster/WASP/pseudo-intellectual/Christian/bohemian prepster. So I fall into all sorts of categories. I’ve smoked a Pall Mall and indulged in the Miller High Life and PBR on occasion if you want to go into the stereotype. I’ve been to my share of hipster shows/bars/whatever. And I will continue to do so, it’s part of who I am. Hipsters are just people, really. We all can learn from each other and all throughout my life, even in elementary school, I’ve just enjoyed learning from people who are different than I am and experiencing new ideas and beliefs. I think people who truly are a bit suspicious of the “hipster” should simply hang out with whatever person they are judging and see what that person has to offer. Of course I recommend using good judgment and staying away from sociopaths/serial killers etc.
My personal definition of a hipster is just a person who’s not afraid to explore who he or she is, and the exploration generally involves music/poetry/art. There’s a danger of going into a downward spiral into drugs and alcohol, but that’s also true if you’re a doctor, lawyer or investment banker. (Or anyone who keeps up with global politics).
n.b. I’m not a hipster or “insider” but I do appreciate the culture.
My personal definition of a hipster is just a person who’s not afraid to explore who he or she is, and the exploration generally involves music/poetry/art.
I see, I see. I guess mine is more like the definitions in 1 or 2 of the link. I take hipster as deliberately rejecting the mainstream and projecting irony, being “cool” by being “uncool” instead. So by my definition, I wouldn’t even consider you a hipster, since you’re not trying to be original (just like everybody else), per se, you’re just doing what you’re doing and to hell with what everybody else thinks! So yeah, I see why there was disconnect between our interpretations.
I am sick to death of potentially good movies on limited release. The Descendants is just now opening today in my town. So it will probably be another month before TinkerTailorSoldierSpy shows up.
According to the numbers, The Descendants was raking in 2x or 3x more dollars per screen than Twilight over the past 3 weeks. Yet Twilight was showing on 6 screens in my town, while The Descendants was showing on none. Economically speaking, this doesn’t seem very smart. If you assume that Twilight is earning 1 unit/screen, and The Descendants earns 2 units/screen, then showing Twilight on 6 screens earns 6 units, but showing Twilight on 5 screens and The Descendants on 1 screen earns 7 units. That’s a no-brainer – unless there are other factors at play here. I suspect the margins of movie theaters and the politics of release are ripe for Overthinking.
I agree! While I don’t have a particular desire to see The Descendants – mainly because I cannot picture George Clooney as a family man so don’t really want to spend money watching him try to be one – I do want to see A Dangerous Method, which is only playing in New York and Los Angeles at the moment. When I lived in LA I could be all pretentious and say “Hah, I can see such and such and you can’t!” (I really didn’t say that) but now I can’t. And I can’t even find out when it will be playing in wide release, if at all. So annoying. There ARE cities in the US other than LA and NYC where you can find people wanting to see a more thought-compelling movies. **Vent completed**
To be fair, the reason for limited releases isn’t because they think there aren’t folks in flyover country who want to see certain movies. Most limited releases, especially this time of year particularly for movies to be releases wide eventually, is to get them eligible for awards. Thus, New York and Los Angeles, where most of the people who vote on said awards live, make the most sense. See, it isn’t about underestimating middle America! It’s about cynical business moves!
Are you saying that a movie is ineligible for an award if it has a wide release? That can’t be right.
No, that obviously isn’t the case. Otherwise, there would be very few movies eligible. However, sometimes they don’t feel that a movie is quite ready for a wide release, or they don’t have the finances for it or what have you. Also, limited release can be a cheaper way to build word of mouth for a movie, what with critics being in LA and New York. Plus, you get a limited release, you win an award, and then when you go to a wide release you can promote it as an award winner.
There are probably other reasons as well. I’m no industry insider.
law of diminishing returns
i’m not saying the distribution is perfect (i have no idea). you just can’t really compare returns from two different points on the curve. if there is 100 times more copies of twilight showing then the descendants and the return per screen is only one third, than that sounds pretty great (for twilight).
also, on completely unrelated note, OTI broke 20,000 fans on facebook this week. hooray?
The contents of this open thread are all fine and good, but HOLY FREAKING CRAP THERE’S A NEW TRAILER FOR THE BATTLESHIP MOVIE AND IT IS EVEN MORE RIDONCULOUS THAN THE FIRST ONE:
Why don’t they show any scenes with Sharktopus???
YOU SHOULD TOTALLY WATCH SNOMAGEDDON TOMORROW NIGHT!
Sorry, I had to. ;p
This is very simple. If at some point Liam Neeson says “You sunk my battleship,” then I will give this movie a chance. If not, it is dead to me.
That’s the same standard I had for Ang Lee’s Hulk movie. “Pete,” I said, “you saw the movie. At any point does the Hulk say ‘Hulk smash?'” “No,” he said. “I pass,” I said. Still haven’t seen it.
Is it just me, or was the music rather dubsteppy?
And more about the viral advertising:
I’d never given Mr. Le Carre much of a chance when I went through my English spy novelists phase as a teenager (because, you know, everyone goes through that, am I right?). But I’d been reading a lot of Graham Greene this year and, with the news about the TTTS movie, I decided to give the book a try. I started it Thursday and am damn near close to finishing it. Something about Le Carre’s writing in general seems worlds removed from the James Bond-style spy caper, as well should be (I read his “Spy Who Came In From the Cold” for a college class once and really enjoyed it, but I never got around to his other work). Hooray for late discoveries of popular authors who are actually popular because they write very good books, I guess.
RIP Harry Morgan, when I heard he was 96 I couldn’t help but think foul play.