If any company ever needed to quit the doom diet, it’s AMC. We realize time’s are challenging and they need to tell shareholders something, but does it have to be that they have “substantial doubt” their business can continue to stay afloat? I mean,
Negative prophetic hypotheticals aren’t even remotely encouraging for businesses.
Sure, AMC are burning cash while closed and if they open and don’t do enough business they’ll burn reserves even faster. The problem is the longer they stay closed, I’d argue, the worse it all gets.
The theater chain, which closed its theaters earlier this year, expects to have lost between $2.1 billion and $2.4 billion in the first quarter.
I’ve been saying all along that they should reopen as soon as it’s safe to do so. More and more businesses are being allowed to reopen. We’re in June now, and while there are no new wide release movies available, it seems prudent to me that they should get the theaters open — again, if it’s safe to do so — then start showing movies.
Or are they literally going to wait until the week of Tenet on July 17? I’ve heard they may reopen in July, but not seen any actual date on the AMC website. Has anybody else?
I’ve watched the opening episode of SPACE FORCE several times. Tried watching part of episode two and keep bailing. I’m lost. It seems from several articles I’m coming across, maybe this emptiness of space and comprehension is shared?
If only the same could be said of SPACE FORCE, Daniels’ second new TV comedy to hit screens in the past month. Indeed, smartly interrogating its concept, adding depth and doing more than cycling through easy gags aren’t the Netflix series’ priorities, or even close to them, at least based on its just-released debut season. And let’s be clear: SPACE FORCE isn’t just the lesser of Daniels’ two new shows; it’s simply not great in general. THE OFFICE, but about an amusing true new offshoot of the US military, this definitely isn’t
Would like to think that I get all forms of comedy, because I’ve been around the block awhile, but don’t understand — seriously, this isn’t bashing, and this isn’t a review — what the heck is Daniels trying to do with this series?
There are talented actors involved. Lisa Phoebe Buffay Kudrow, Steve Carrell, who worked with Daniels on The Office. Kudrow looks too old in SPACE FORCE and Carrell is criminally unfunny.
I’ve never been a huge Carrell fan — he’s just too dry to be funny to me (sort of like a poor man’s David Spade, without Spade’s innate charm) — but at least I can appreciate what he’s trying to do from a comedic standpoint. Kudrow, on the other hand, is a very funny actress and I’m hardpressed to think of anything I’ve seen her do that was intended to be funny that wasn’t funny.
So, let’s assume it’s not the actors, it must be the story, the script, the overall idea. What exactly is funny about establishing this race to a space station? Or is that even what this is about?
Alas, this is not a review. I don’t review TV or movies that I can’t get into, because the reality is not everybody is into everything. I haven’t seen The Office or Parks & Recreation — both are acclaimed series from Greg Daniels. After Upload, I’m more interested in watching both of those workplace shows. SPACE FORCE is a workplace show, so it stands to reason maybe it’s the setting that’s throwing me off.
Definitely couldn’t get into SPACE FORCE. Would like somebody to explain it to me, however, because I feel like I’m really missing something. Maybe, and not afraid to admit, it’s just smarter than I.
Don’t you just hate being on the side of a joke you don’t understand? Embarrassing? Not really. More like disappointing.
Anybody else watched this? What’s going on? What makes this funny? Is it the irony? Is it political satire? What is it?
Just don’t think this method is a business wise or most effective way to monetize by disrupting your website readers and potential subscribers. In my detailed comment reply I stated there were other creative ways to drive more subscribers to their site.
Enter virtual events.
“With the huge success we’ve had with virtual events — over a quarter of a million attendees have tuned in from over 110 countries — we’ve realized that a significant portion of our attendees were not current NYT subscribers,” said Jessica Flood, managing director, NYTLive. “We are working to engage that group over the long term in a variety of ways, including a new suite of subscriber-only virtual events launching in the coming weeks.”
By holding special subscriber-only virtual events, it drives more paid subscribers.
When we choose to monetize this site someday, virtual events will be on the menu. I’d love to watch movies with the most engaged and energetic readers and it ties into what we do on YouTube with our “just left the theater” movie reviews. One way to scale these virtual events is to do it behind a paywall.
The New York Times isn’t having movie watching sessions, no, but there are all different types of virtual events and, as the article states above, they are attractive to paid subscribers as an added benefit.
And it continues to bother me that movie theater chains feel like they can’t make any money while they’re closed in the pandemic. Ideas exist, but they’d rather just say “we’re waiting for the new movies to launch in July” — what happens if Tenet and Mulan are delayed? Does that mean they’d hold out on reopening in August?
Summer is going to come and go. Movie theaters need to reopen during the summer. At least one some sort of scale. Open your best performing theaters in major markets first, fine, whatever, just start reopening the locked doors.
Currently, you can’t access HBO Max on Roku or Amazon Fire TV devices, and if you’ve subscribed to HBO through Roku Channels or Prime Video Channels you’re also out of luck. That’s frustrating for customers who use those platforms, and it obviously will inhibit HBO Max’s initial uptake. Talks between WarnerMedia and the two companies continue, but there’s no indication when the parties may come to any agreements.
The Variety article quoting 80 million people not able to access HBO Max that are on Roku and Amazon Fire is a half-truth, at best. If every one of those 80 million people didn’t find another way to access HBO Max than that would be true.
Of course it’s not.
I think many are finding other ways, sure there are a lot who aren’t, but still, let’s be intellectually honest with the numbers. We’ve used a Roku 3 since 2013 when it came out. When I realized that HBO Max and Roku were arguing over the finer details, I had already planned to access HBO Max through my Android phone. The article fails to mention there are other ways to watch HBO Max on your TV, even if you are a Roku or Amazon Fire user.
Fact check alert, here are more stupid quotes from the article:
Amazon, for its part, said in a statement: “AT&T is choosing to deny these loyal HBO customers access to the expanded catalog. We believe that if you’re paying for HBO, you’re entitled to the new programming through the method you’re already using. That’s just good customer service and that’s a priority for us.”
HBO isn’t choosing to deny access to HBO Max through Amazon. They offer a standalone app, not include as an added channel like they have done previously. Those who pay for HBO as an add-on channel aren’t getting the extra HBO Max content, but that was already stated in advance that these subscribers wouldn’t. The sheer amount of content HBO Max have added makes them more than some add-on premium channel. Amazon doesn’t currently offer a way to watch Netflix, Disney+ or Hulu through their service either, so who’s fault is that?
Verdict: Amazon is factually correct with their statement, but disingenuous because HBO Max as designed and rolled out doesn’t fit in Amazon Prime Video channel’s ecosystem. HBO Max as a standalone service won’t work any more than Netflix, Disney+, Peacock, DC Universe will.
Now, let’s tackle Roku.
In a statement about HBO Max, a Roku spokesman told Variety, “We are focused on mutually positive distribution agreements with all new OTT services that will deliver a quality user experience to viewers in the more than 40 million households that choose Roku to access their favorite programs and discover new content. Unfortunately we haven’t reached agreement yet with HBO Max.
To parse these words: HBO Max doesn’t want to share as much of their subscription revenue with Roku.
So, here we are, Amazon and Roku entrenched on one side, WarnerMedia on the other. In the middle? As always, us, customers in the tug of war middle. We suffer because both sides think they have leverage over the other.
The saddest thing? HBO Max has some amazing content. They’ve got Saturday morning cartoon fodder galore with Looney Tunes, The Flintstones, The Jetsons and Scooby Doo: Where Are You? (Popeye, too, coming soon). The classic movie sector is covered with TCM, anime is covered with Ghibley and Crunchyroll and Adult Swim sections. Iconic TV shows like all seasons of the best ensemble group comedy ever, Friends, not to mention all the other award-winning HBO content.
HBO Max is worth $14.99/month
I don’t understand why some people are complaining about the price. HBO without the Max-added content as a premium add-on through Amazon was $14.99/month. If I signed up through HBO Now, it was, yes, $14.99/month. Now, it’s essentially the same price, only with about three times the content. They didn’t raise or lower the price, they kept it the same.
How is this not worth it? When 80 million people were subscribed to HBO already, most of these people should be able to figure out how to get HBO through their cable companies or however for about the same price, yes/no? I realize there were subscription deals depending on how and where you received HBO. That’s the complicated part of this and maybe some (or many?) were receiving HBO for less than $14.99/month. Those of us who were on the outside, cord cutters as we’re known, didn’t get HBO for some screaming low price deal. Whenever we wanted to sign up — and we have in the past, binged what we wanted to watch, and left — we paid $14.99/month.
Will take much longer than a month to binge everything good at HBO Max
We’re going to be subscribed to HBO Max for much longer than a month or two, that’s for sure. Our watchlist is overflowing with movies and TV shows. Neither of us have seen The Big Bang Theory or Rick and Morty, two popular shows with many seasons.
HBO Max has the strongest overall library of existing movies and TV for any streaming service at the moment. Their only weakness is originals and brand new content. Netflix is far and away the leader there, followed by Amazon and Hulu and then maybe even Quibi or AppleTV+ … HBO Max is at the bottom with Peacock for lack of originals right now. But they are working on them and I suspect that will change.
Yes, it’s a stronger existing library than Disney+ of stuff we haven’t seen on streaming services (who hasn’t seen the Pixar movies, classic Disney movies and Star Wars?), IMO. Disney’s content is top notch, no doubt, and they had the best launch possible for Disney+ based on their IP but their only original bet was The Mandalorian, amazing as it was, and here we are almost a year later, waiting for what? A second season of The Mandalorian. Sure, they offered us a final season of The Clone Wars in between, but pretty much everything else interesting and new happens at their more adult streaming service, Hulu, not Disney+.
HBO Max – a good streaming service with huge potential that needs to get this Roku and Amazon Fire device issue resolved soon, which I do believe will happen. Both sides need each other, and time and stubbornness plus customers being irritated and complaining will wear them down.
In the meantime, however you’re accessing HBO Max, they’ve given us a ton of great stuff to watch. Enjoy!
2020 Spring Viewing Challenge: 30+ Action/Thriller/Suspense Movies Viewed March 1 – May 30, 2020 (completed: 54 movies watched, rated & reviewed)
2020 Summer+ Viewing Challenge: 100+ Any Movie or TV Episode Viewed June 1 – September 30, 2020 (ongoing, results pending)
Summer+ 2020 Challenge: Watch/Rewatch 100+ ANY Movies or TV Episodes June 1 – September 30, 2020
For the first time, TV show episodes are being included in our viewing challenge, which means any movie (streaming or in the theaters, whenever they reopen) or TV show you want to watch or rewatch from now until our 2nd annual Halloween horror challenge in October counts toward the challenge.
This is also our longest and biggest viewing challenge spanning 4+ months and 100+ movies or TV shows, which breaks down to 25+ movies or TV show episodes per month, a little less than one per day on average. September is typically back to school, but this year nothing is normal, so including that month, too, as a bonus.
Can you complete this viewing challenge?
With at least some of this time involving people staying at home due to the pandemic, getting a jump on this challenge should not only be possible but realistic.
TV series binge-watchers rejoice, this should give you a chance to participate as well.
What are viewing challenges?
It’s where we try and watch a minimum number of movies — or in this challenge case, TV show episodes count, too — of certain type(s). They are usually themed based on the month(s) or seasonal. For example, around Halloween, horror movies and holiday movies during the holidays.
Any movie watcher is welcome to participate. You do not need a blog or website, but do need some way to track the movies you’ve watched during the challenge. Fortunately, there are several free services available including Letterboxd (movies only), Google Docs Spreadsheet (FREE) and others.
How To Participate
Just keep track of all movies and TV episodes, regardless of genre, you’ve watched or rewatched from June 1, 2020 until midnight September 30, 2020. Sites like Letterboxd make it easy to do.
Tag movies watched with #summer2020challenge. EXAMPLE. here are movies tagged #feb2020challenge. You do not need to write reviews or rate any movies to use the Letterboxd service, you can simply use to mark as watched.
It’s free and fun to participate. Be sure to comment below if you’re in the challenge and/or those with movie/TV blogs link in so I get pinged and can add you to the participation list. Hope to see others joining in too!
If you have a movie/TV-related blog
Again, this is optional to participate, but for those who do have a blog or movie/TV review site, here’s an additional recommendation.
Having something to write about on your blog can be a challenge sometimes. This gives you something you can write about with updates on your progress over the next four months. Tie your updates into monthly recaps about the progress and encourage your readers to get involved, if you want. You might even schedule live viewing events with your subscribers.
Social movie and TV watching in 2020, good luck to all taking the challenge!
If you told me a movie about Jean Seberg, who died young under somewhat mysterious circumstances, that acted in some great films including the disaster film Airport, was hounded by the FBI for her involvement in the civil rights movement — was and would be a mediocre film, I’d have a hard time believing.
How did the filmmaker’s screw this one up? I’ll break it down momentarily, but think the script is largely to blame.
These kind of movies are among the hardest for me to process from a reviewer’s standpoint. I mean, all the ingredients should be there and the execution is to blame.
Come on, Seberg’s life is very, very interesting and yet this is all delivered flat and by the numbers, except and — thankfully — for Kristen Stewart.
Heck, you’ll be more excited reading articles about Jean Seberg.
Seberg told the NY Times in 1974 that she had once been very committed to the Panthers, but had “officially broke with them…I’ve analyzed the fact that I’m not equipped to participate absolutely and totally. I had a very, very bad mental breakdown, and now I realize I wouldn’t want a person like me in a group I was a member of, as Groucho Marx would put it.”
A miscarriage, overdoses and a death under strange circumstances — these are the ingredients that make for a good film and yet they’re barely explored!
Before going further, there are spoilers ahead. If you haven’t watched Seberg yet — it’s available for streaming on Amazon Prime Video — then you might want to come back after watching (if you want to watch, that is), because I have some spoiler-heavy stuff to say about this movie, including breaking down the ending, which I hated.
… you’ve been warned, SPOILERS ahead …
Let’s start with the best part of this movie — by far — Kristen Stewart.
Without Stewart’s acting, this movie would have been 1-star for me
And yet, I did feel like Stewart was strong in this film. She gave some real passion to the mostly limp noodle lines she was given. Even saw her cry a few times, get mad and some semi-nude sex scenes took me by surprise. A bare breasted Kristen Stewart in this film? Didn’t expect that.
So, I give Kristen Stewart’s performance with the material given a sold 3.5 out of 5 stars. It’s hard to do what she did, and commend her for that. I wish she’d have been as stellar with subpar material with Charlie’s Angels and Underwater.
The Real Jean Seberg was an activist locally too
Teenagers Against Polio was just one of Seberg’s causes. The historical film below shows Jean was all about great causes throughout her life, including her home town of Marshalltown, Iowa.
As you watch some (or all) of this Jean Seberg interview, check out her hair. That’s the hair that I wish Kristen Stewart had in at least some of the movie.
Kristen Stewart sports the Breathless Seberg hairdo throughout most the movie.
Why didn’t the hair and makeup people change Stewart’s short, pixie hairdo? Look at the video above. Seberg didn’t always have short hair. Yes, she had it during the movie Breathless (1960, shown below) and she helped make this a trendy style for women. I just wish other eras of her hair had been on display.
Also, Stewart doesn’t make any attempt to capture the voice of Seberg. She’s Kristen Stewart’s voice as Jean Sebert, not Sebert’s more mousy voice.
I know, you’re probably thinking? Her hair, so what? This has little to do with the movie itself, but I don’t find women in short hair very attractive, including Kristen Stewart, and thus this creates a (very) small negative bias against short-haired women characters.
Jean Seberg in the first video looks way more attractive to me. As a viewer, we can’t help but being at least a little biased by how a character’s appearance. It’s the reason Danny Trejo is so often cast as a bad guy because his weathered face, tats and the like just make him look like the stereotypical bad guy. Love Trejo as Machete, by the way!
I’m not saying just because a woman’s hair is short she can’t have an amazing performance. Far from it, I’m saying that it is distracting to me. Somewhat shallow? Yes, I’ll at least admit it.
The exposition text ending sucks
Very rarely the “and then this happened” text endings explaining the actual ending and/or death for the character work. Sure, it’s effective as an epilogue for characters with lives more electric and interesting than their death, but to tell us that Sebring died at a mere 40 years old when that’s more interesting than the movie we just sat through for 90+ minutes? Lame. Flashbacks are tough, but it might have made more sense in this story. Cut the scenes in more present with investigation around her murder back to the movie roles she starred in and the black panther involvement.
Instead, we’re treated to a mostly dry, boring FBI surveillance film. Why? Can’t help wondering what Greta Gerwig would have done if she was behind Seberg? No doubt a much better film.
The text at the end instead of being enlightening and “wow, that’s too bad” moment becomes an irritation for the viewer wanting to see that film instead.
I’m always curious what others think of films after I’ve written and shared my own review. The reason why not during or before is I don’t want to be influenced. Sometimes, I’m way off in my reaction to a film than others, which I’ll always find fascinating. Let’s see how this one fares.
Reviews by Others
What do other reviewers think about Seberg?
Ben Rolph / DiscussingFilm (4/5): “…has depth and underlying intrigue to the reasoning’s and the portrayal of the story, it doesn’t hold up to the standard of spectatorial mastery of The Conversation. However, that isn’t the core of the film, that is the outer rim of intrigue. The real centre piece is Stewart, Jean is the beating heart of the film”
James Kleinmann / The Queer Review: “In my opinion, Judy is a mediocre film with a good performance, whereas Seberg is a great movie, with a remarkable performance. Yet somehow, Judy got Renée Zellweger another Academy Award for a showy role, while Seberg failed to get Kristen Stewart an overdue first Oscar nod.”
miquewatson / In Their Own League (4/5): “This is a tale so absolutely horrifying in just how current it all feels; power corrupts the corruptible, and people are the collateral damage.”
After Misery (1.5/5): ” time is wasted on FBI agent Jack Solomon (Jack O’Connell) and his weird family life. Why is this so much about him when we don’t know anything about him and movie’s name is Seberg? Seberg the film is a blended drink and the maker has no idea about its ingredients.”
Candid Cinema: “I feel as if he focused too much on the surveillance aspect of the Jean Seberg case, rather than have it be a character study on this icon. This also proves that Kristen Stewart can tackle anything because this was her BEST performance, all she needs is a great script and she will eventually get the recognition she deserves.”
CJ / Film Mafia: “Seberg’s story is a great one, and Kristen Stewart, a truly magnetic actor, is a great Seberg. But the dialogue is excruciating, and it makes the actors saying it look bad: you can’t act this stuff properly.”
David Ferguson / Movie Reviews From The Dark: “The film would have been best served by focusing on either Seberg or Solomon. The two stories dilute the effectiveness, and beyond that, the Black Panther story line fades, as does the whole celebrity-as-an-activist subplot.”
filmreviews12 / The Reviews (2/4): “…when so much of the rest of the proceedings are marred down by such meandering scripting and plodding direction, the movie takes a distant approach to a real-life story and comes off lacking and unfocused.”
Graham / Scannain: “…is a relatively harmless affair. Even with two compelling leads, the film cannot be elevated above average.”
hoops2448 / The Sardonic Romantic: “The story of Jean Seberg is a tragic one that people should know about, especially today when disinformation is becoming the norm yet again, but I don’t think Seberg the film does justice to her undoing or the story of a country willing to let it happen.”
M.N Miller / Ready Steady Cut: “there is very little tension filled paranoia created here nor a well-designed narrative on the assault on her mental health that the makers of Seberg are selling.”
MrJabbatron / Jason “Jabba” Davis: “In what should be a fascinating true story about race, power, and state surveillance, the script just isn’t there, and fails to delve below a skin deep level. Despite some classy art direction and costumes that beautifully recreate an authentic late 60s ethos, Seberg is a painfully slow and frustrating movie that ultimately takes us nowhere.”
Reddy’s Reviews (5.5/10): “…has value in many important areas, but Andrews just can’t get these elements to work together in a way that makes this movie as impactful as intended. Stewart will find a role that fits her skill set and gets her some major nominations, but unfortunately this attempt didn’t quite work out for her.”
RogerInOrlando / Movie Nation (1.5/4): “And director Benedict Andrews underscores just how deeply he doesn’t “get it” by finishing the film with a long closeup of Stewart/Seberg, failing to wring emotions out of her, her failing to wring them out of us. Maybe that’s his way of throwing her under the bus”
Trailer Trashed: “I have seen a whole lot of ‘based on true events’ stories this January already, and this one falls way behind the pack. “
Virginia DeBolt / Old Ain’t Dead: “Kristen Stewart did an outstanding job with the rather poor script she was given. With the right hair and costumes, she evoked the real woman admirably.”
Linked above and wondering what would be the cool thing to do next? Commenting once in awhile is always good (I like reader and other blogger interaction). If you have the trackback/pingback come to your site then just approve it because after people read your review then they can come here and follow links and read someone else’s review. What comes around goes around and sharing is the ultimate “thank you!” on the internet.
Did I miss your review? Use the comments to tell me about your movie-related/review blog and I’ll follow. I like following movie-related blogs and pull quoting from my reading list as well as other new blogs shared, liked and discovered.
Season 1 DC Universe / CW May 31, 2020 @ 9:00pm PT (GMT-8)
Episode 2 – Icicle
Starts with Icicle backstory. His wife is dying of cancer and has him make a promise to hold others responsible that did this to her. He will spend his time tracking down those behind chemical plants and punishing them.
Present day and Icicle wants to know who took out Brainwave. He meets with an politician with a magician son and learns about the young girl who carried the magic staff.
Courtney and Pat talking about what happened to Brainwave and rooting out more of the Injustice Society. Pat wants Court to lay low, but she has another idea:
“I have a three point plan. Find them, surprise them, kick their asses!”
Courtney goes to school and notices a girl being slut-shamed. She tries to help her from a mean girls group. The magician boy shows her a card trick.
Icicle leaves a star in ice and Courtney comes across it when walking home. Court convinces Pat to fire up S.T.R.I.P.E and they head into an icy battle with Icicle.
Little do they know that a school bus is going to caught up in the action (top most picture). But there’s more than saving the bus, it’s the kids on board, too.
So, what exactly is Icicle up to? What is the deal with the magician and his politician dad side story and how does that fit? Barbara, Courtney’s mom, encounters Icicle’s non-villain regular persona disguise and seems to be buddying up to him. What’s the deal with that?
Icicle is the leader of the Injustice League. For those who are up on the Stargirl comics, which I mentioned in the episode 2 review, you may have a bit of an advantage, according to Geoff Johns, the creator. There are also easter eggs galore being planted:
I mean, you should pay attention to everybody. There’s characters in there that are that will seem minor that aren’t. And there’s items! People are like, “There’s so many Easter eggs,” and I was like, “Absolutely,” because this is being made by people who are neck-deep in the lore. Like, we love the JSA and Stargirl, and everyone working on it really delved in, from production to writers — everybody.
This was a good, not great, episode. Seems like we’re still in setup mode and characters being introduced. Icicle’s backstory makes him not all bad, which is a nice touch. Not sure why we needed the brainwave hospital bed scene or Mike, Pat’s son getting into trouble and being assigned a paper route. That has … what to deal with the story? Maybe later on it does. I liked the magician part, although something more magical with that could have been done.
All in all, entertaining, interesting and recommended.