Weekend Watch: End of the Year Edition

Welcome to the Weekend Watch: End of the Year Edition. There’s not much new out there, but there’s definitely stuff worth seeing, whether it’s out this week or the last few weeks.


Live By Night (Opened 12/25, expands 1/13)

Loren: I love the time period and actiony fare set within, but early reviews are not favorable (34% on Rotten Tomatoes) and though I enjoy Murder Batman as a director he’s not my favorite actor. I’m pretty sure I’m waiting on this one.

RDT: I saw it a couple weeks ago. It felt…not finished. There’s a lot going on (and a lot of the “a lot going on” is really good), but it lacks focus. I think it was originally supposed to come out March of next year, but they jumped the gun and pushed it for awards qualifications. I think had they had another month or two to work on the edit, we would’ve gotten a much stronger film.

Rick: Like Loren, I think Ben Affleck is a talented director and a middling actor. I like the aesthetic and the story, but I’m not in a super rush to see this. If I catch it in theaters it’ll be on the cheap.

Jen: Man, Affleck sure can wear a suit. The costumes and production design look fantastic. The rest of it looks like… a gangster movie. I’ve seen a gangster movie before so not sure if I need to rush out and see another one.

Hidden Figures (Opened 12/25)

Loren: I kinda hate that I knew nothing about this story before this trailer (and the episode of Timeless from a few weeks ago) but I am really interested in it now. I know a few people that have already seen it and I’ve heard nothing but praise. The only thing I will say is that this trailer is not my favorite. It’s a little all over the place tonally and does that thing where it tells you the whole story.

RDT: I agree with Loren. Hopefully, this movie gets these women the notice they’ve long deserved. As for seeing it, I definitely will, maybe not in theaters though.

Rick: Yeah, the trailer isn’t strong, but I watched this recently and the film is definitely praiseworthy. There are a couple of moments that feel like they stretch the truth a bit, but not enough to detract from the story. It is shameful that these hyper-intelligent women are just now getting the credit for the landmark work they accomplished, but at least now they can help inspire new generations to achieve.

Jen: I think, and hope, that this trailer strongly undersells this movie. I will absolutely see it, but the trailer is a little too cheesy for the story they’re telling. Costner’s “I need someone who can look beyond the numbers” is a an eye-roller for sure.

20th Century Women (Opened 12/28)

Loren: Sometimes I wonder, “Is Billy Crudup from the 70’s?” (The answer is yes.)

RDT: Ok, I enjoyed the hell out of that trailer. Shockingly, it did what a trailer is supposed to do, made me want to see the movie, not tell the whole story of the movie. Great cast, too. In.

Rick: I can’t recommend this highly enough. It takes an unusual path to relate the experiences of three generations of women; both through their own lenses and through that of the young men in their lives. It’s rife with humor, love, and a touch of sadness. Well worth your time.

Jen: Annette Bening looks off-the-charts awesome in this. I loved Beginners and this is sort of a companion piece to that story so I think I will be checking it out when it pops up streaming.

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Episode #47 – Year End Holiday Spectacular Jamboree

It’s the end of the year so the guys brought in co-contributors Rick and Jen to cover all things 2016.

The gang talks their biggest surprises of the year in Movies and Tv as well as their biggest disappointments. They also give their top and bottom three movies from 2016. You could go as far as to call it a romp.

Everyone here at the Hollywood Picture News thanks you for spending the year with us and wishes you all a very happy and healthy holiday season. We’ll see you next week in 2017!

As always, please check us out on Facebook and Twitter.

Don’t forget to rate/review on iTunes and now Stitcher, too. We’d really appreciate it!

Weekend Watch: Holiday Edition

Welcome to the Weekend Watch: Holiday Edition. There’s a lot out there this time of year. So hopefully we can point you towards the best ways to spend your viewing time (or, at least, steer you clear of the garbage) this holiday season.


Passengers (Opened 12/21)

Loren: Yay scifi stuff! Boo precociousness! I don’t know, the first time I saw the trailer this looked pretty cool but every other time it’s been more of a, I don’t know, slog to get through. That can’t be good right?

RDT: Despite the reviews and early “buzz,” or lack thereof, I like these two actors. So, given how cheap tickets are where I am right now, and the amount of downtime I have, I’m pretty sure I’m going to see this.

Rick: I enjoy that there’s more notable sci-fi coming out, but early reviews of this have not been favorable. Must have been a lot of studio meddling because this script was one of the most highly regarded entries on the Black List. I may catch this at a matinee or on Netflix down the line.

Jen: A week ago I was a mark for this film. It only took one review to ruin it for me and, while I still may see it eventually on some streaming outlet, I’m not spending my money on this one.

Sing (Opened 12/21)

Loren: Illumination does not make very good animated movies. I’m sorry.

RDT: I’ve been told I’m taking my niece to see this or Moana. Fingers crossed she picks Moana.

Rick: I’m sure this is fun, but it’s just not for me.

Jen: I think my 6 year-old niece is going to love it. I’ll be seeing something else.

Assassin’s Creed (Opened 12/21)

Loren: I want this to be good to break the curse but, *sigh*, it’s tracking at 33% on Rotten Tomatoes. Oh well. Maybe the next video game movie will get it.

RDT: Sadly, it looks like this will not be the video game movie to “reverse the curse.”

Rick: I mean, the stunts will be good, right?

Jen: What’s the over/under on those blind trust fall things? I’m thinking it will be a high number.

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Episode #46 – We’re Heading Back Up The Uncanny Valley

This week the guys are talking a little known SciFi movie that hit the cinemas a few of you may have seen… Rogue One (Spoilers from 01:17:00 – 01:24:45). Also all the news bits from last week like:

  • F8 of the Furious Tr4il3r.
  • Pacific Rim and Godzilla sequels get lacklustre title changes.
  • King’s Revival gets a Crowe.
  • The next Pirates movie gets Knight(ley)ed.
  • Incredibles 2 starts recording so we talk for too long about other Pixar movies.
  • The most TV reboots imaginable. Single White Female, Taken, Star Trek, The Honeymooners, How I Met Your Father, Riverdale, Foxy Brown, Ducktales etc.
  • Marco….Polo….Marco…Polo… I can’t find the $200m you lost. You’re Cancelled.
  • Amazon gets Sneaky with Pete.
  • Julia Roberts heads to TV while Taran Killam heads to Broadway.
  • F*ck this F*cking Universe gets an Ocean Master, Batflick News, and Gotham City Sirens might happen
  • Hugh Jackman gets paid less to make something more for Logan.

All of that plus the Weekend Watched and all of the usual tangents.

As always, please check us out on Facebook and Twitter.

Don’t forget to rate/review on iTunes and now Stitcher, too. We’d really appreciate it!

Weekend Watch – 12/16/16

Welcome to the Weekend Watch. Where we try to point you towards the best ways to spend your viewing time (or, at least, steer you clear of the garbage).


Rogue One: A Star Wars Story 

Loren:!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Etc.

RDT: Yeah, I guess I’ll see it.

Rick: Now that I’ve fallen ill (*grumbles*), I’ll have to wait and see this when I’m healthy. So, I guess I won’t be on the internet for like a week…

Jen: DUH!

Collateral Beauty 

Loren: I’m good. It’s like one of those holiday movies (Love Actually, New Years Eve) but with Tragic Circumstances being the holiday.

RDT: I saw this and Jen and Rick are both 100% right with what they said below. It’s cloying, manipulative, Oscar bait. It’s also predictable as hell (as I said on Facebook “It’s the moviest movie that ever movied”). And I desperately wanted to hate it. But the cast and the performances really elevate the writing (which is not good). What we got is not good, but there is a good movie in there somewhere.

Rick: Is it “Will Smith Wants An Oscar” season already? Pass.

Jen: Can we have an adult drama that doesn’t deal with someone’s kid dying? It seems the in thing, of late, to define your protagonist by the loss of their child. I find it cheap, manipulative, and, yes, painful. Move on Hollywood. Continue reading

Episode #45 – Mean Green Mother from Outer Space

As we head towards the end of the year, let’s break down some pop culture news.

All that, the usual tangents, and what we’re watching in the Weekend Watched.

As always, please check us out on Facebook and Twitter.

Don’t forget to rate/review on iTunes and now Stitcher, too. We’d really appreciate it!


Let’s Talk About The First Spider-Man: Homecoming Trailer

I’ve said it on the podcast, much like RDT’s favorite Superhero is The Flash, mine’s Spider-Man. Ever since I was a little kid Spider-Man is what got me into comics as a whole. He’s that guy that most people reading comics at the time felt was totally relatable (you know except for the incredible super powers thing). But Peter Parker had the same problems that you did, plus added threats of the The Green Goblin, Doctor Octopus, or The Vulture. He was easily the most accessible superhero.

Over the years Spider-Man movies have ranged in their quality. We got two pretty great stories in the first two movies, though a lackluster Peter Parker in Tobey Maguire. Then we got a terrible hodge-podge of a Spider-Man/Venom/Sandman/Green Goblin story that reeked of studio interference in the abysmal Spider-Man 3. Sony rebooted the franchise just 5 years later with The Amazing Spider-Man. In that we got another origin story, a too cool for school Peter Parker, an incredible Gwen Stacy from Emma Stone, and (I had to look this up because I couldn’t actually remember who it was) the Lizard as the villain. Followed by and even more lazy sequel with another Green Goblin (sort of) and Electro as the villains.

This brings us to Marvel Studios deal with Sony to re-acquire the use of Spider-Man. Long story short years ago Marvel was going bankrupt and sold off the film rights to a lot of their characters. Spider-Man went to Sony, The X-Men and Fantastic Four went to Fox, Hulk went to Universal etc. Some of those properties reverted to Marvel after they weren’t used (Daredevil). Some have been churning out whatever they can to keep the property (Fantastic Four) but Sony realized that they were losing money on the Spider-Man franchise and couldn’t get the right version of the character out there. Marvel had wanted to use Peter Parker/Spider-Man (and presumably, many of their other characters) so they struck a deal adding a new Spider-Man to the already existing MCU. Still basically owned by Sony, this Spider-Man could show up and interact with MCU heroes like Iron Man and Captain America. Cue Captain America: Civil War where we got our first glimpse of this Spider-Man and the rest is history. Now Marvel, in co-production with Sony is releasing the first stand alone movie featuring Tom Holland as Peter Parker/Spider-Man. But enough history, let’s talk about the first Spider-Man: Homecoming trailer: Continue reading

Weekend Watch – 12/9/16

Welcome to the Weekend Watch. Where we try to point you towards the best ways to spend your viewing time (or, at least, steer you clear of the garbage).


La La Land (Limited)

Loren: Look, this city is a nightmarish hellhole but this makes even that look beautiful. And the fact that it harkens back to old movie musicals with a modern update has me pretty sold. This is a solid yes from me.

RDT: If you listen to the podcast, and I don’t know why you wouldn’t, you know I already saw this (in one of the craziest screenings I’ve ever been to). The movie is phenomenal, definitely one of the best of the year.

Rick: I’ve been anxious to see this for months. I plan on seeing it the first chance I get.

Jen: Shut up and take my money!

Office Christmas Party

Loren: Like, I kinda want to see this but I will in no way pay actual money to do so.

RDT: I enjoy most of the people in this cast. Yet I have no desire to see this at all.

Rick: Why does every comedy feel like it’s just filled with people yelling anymore? Do they not think we’ll get the joke otherwise? It’s a shame, really. I like most of these people. They’re talented comedians, but I’m more than okay not seeing this.

Jen: I do love 90% of this cast. Also, Olivia Munn is in this. It’s no Elf or Christmas Vacation, but I might eventually seek it out on a quiet December night when I want to remember my partying days.

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Episode #44 – A Crossover Of Like 2.52 Shows

This week we’re talking the big CW DC Crossover event where the heroes from Supergirl, Flash, Arrow, and Legends of Tomorrow take on invading aliens. Also we’ve got news like:

  • There most likely won’t be a Rogue Two
  • Escape for New York gets a PreBootQuel
  • There’s a teaser for the Mummy trailer
  • Alpha 5 looks creepy AF (see below)
  • Female 21 Jumpstreet and MIB23 still in the works
  • Jon Favreau is going all animated for the foreseeable future
  • Star Trek: Discovery adds Doug Jones and Anthony Rapp but loses Bryan Fuller
  • Riverdale FINALLY gets a teaser trailer
  • TVLine tells us why people aren’t as into The Walking Dead as they used to be
  • Netflix adds download functionality for offline viewing of some of their media
  • DC gets a new LEGO Batman poster and a release date for Aquaman
  • Guardians Vol 2 hits us with a fantastic teaser trailer
  • Luke Cage gets it’s official season two
  • We get a release/airdate for Inhumans in IMAX and on ABC

All of that plus the Weekend Watched and all of the usual tangents.

As always, please check us out on Facebook and Twitter.

Don’t forget to rate/review on iTunes and now Stitcher, too. We’d really appreciate it!

Weekend Watch – 12/2/16

Welcome to the Weekend Watch. Where we try to point you towards the best ways to spend your viewing time (or, at least, steer you clear of the garbage).



Loren: This isn’t for me. I want to like Natalie Portman but I haven’t really since she was a kid. Unless I hear that this ends up being a “must see”, I think I’ll pass.

RDT: I’m hearing the quality of her performance outweighs the quality of the film overall. Unless I get access to a screening/screener (yay for industry connections!), I doubt I’ll rush out to see it. But I’ll give it a view eventually.

Rick: I know I’ll wind up seeing this, and I have a feeling it’ll be worth it. However, I’m anticipating an on-again, off-again accent from Natalie Portman. It (hopefully) won’t be enough to distract from the rest of her performance.

Jen: This is right up my alley, a mid-century, female-led historical drama. I have no strong feelings on Natalie Portman (which surprises me) but I can’t imagine I won’t be seeing this.


Loren: Look I’m a wrestling fan, but this is co-produced through WWE studios. That should tell you about the quality of this flick. Pass-a-jawea.

RDT: If you read this column with regularity then you know I’m not gonna see this movie (unless Rick deems it Whitsett Theater worthy at some point in the future).

Rick: Exorcism movies are REALLY hard to do well. They all, on some level, wind up being clones of The Exorcist. There are very few in the genre that are worth your time. This flick does have a clever conceit, but it’s still borrowing bits of Insidious. I may catch this at a second run theater just out of curiosity or on Netflix down the line.

Jen: This feels like Hackers meets The Exorcist. I’m sure there is an audience for that. I’m not part of it though.

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