The Oscar Project
Arguably the biggest opening this weekend is Disney's live-action remake of their classic animated film Dumbo. If you're like me, you're eagerly anticipating not one, not two, but three live-action remakes from the House of Mouse this year (Aladdin and The Lion King being the other two). We also have a few big names in limited releases coming this weekend. Click through to find out more.
The Beach Bum
I'm not sure what I watched when I checked out the trailer for this film, but it looks like Matthew McConaughey has taken a break from Lincoln commercials to play Moondog, a beach loving writer who is high on life (among other things). I'm somewhat surprised the creators of this film didn't push for an April 20th release date given the amount of marijuana, alcohol, and other drugs consumed in just the 2 minute trailer.
If you're looking for fine film making, this is not the place to look. This film looks like nothing more than a spring break flick, with people who may have passed the age when spring break is really a thing.
In watching the trailer down below before writing this post, I will freely admit to getting choked up when the music swelled into a fully orchestral version of Baby of Mine. The original Dumbo is probably the first Disney movie (or really movie of any kind) I remember watching. My parents taped it off television when it was on The Wonderful World of Disney in the 80s, with the classic shorts "Mickey and the Beanstalk" and "Lambert the Sheepish Lion" playing ahead of the feature. I can't tell you how many times I watched that video as a kid, knowing exactly where all the commercials landed.
Now, as a parent of four amazing children, one of whom watches over us from heaven, the animated original has taken on a new meaning. As a child I related to Dumbo himself and even to Timothy Q. Mouse, not thinking much about how Jumbo felt at being taken away from her son. Watching the film now, I have a much greater appreciation for what the mother goes through, not knowing what happened to her child, and willing to do whatever it takes to make sure he's taken care of.
The one thing I worry about a little is the much longer running time compared with the original. The animated Dumbo clocks in at just over an hour (which felt much longer watching as a child) but this version pushes things to almost a full two hours. Granted, there is much more story to be told today and the standard for films like this is in the two hour range, but I worry that some smaller kids might get bored with the longer film. That said, the story may ultimately be aimed more at the adults who grew up watching this film than their children.
With a tremendous cast including the likes of Colin Farrell, Michael Keaton, Danny DeVito, and Eva Green, along with newcomers Nico Parker and Finley Hobbins, this film looks to steal the show this weekend and become a favorite with young and old alike for years to come.
In a film that is bound to stir up controversy, a young woman begins working at a Planned Parenthood clinic and is disturbed by what she sees when asked to help during an abortion procedure. Upon seeing what happens during an abortion, she begins a crusade to fight against the company and bring an end to abortion.
It's clear from the outset that this film speaks from the conservative right and is against abortion, but I'm hopeful that it can do more, potentially sparking additional conversation about this oft debated topic in our society. Teen pregnancy and abortions are something that people need to think about and I think the subject is so polarizing at times, that it turns people off from even bringing it up.
This film provides a fictionalized account of the 2008 terrorist attacks on a number of hotels in Mumbai. It stars Dev Patel (Lion) as a worker at the Taj Mahal Hotel along the Mumbai waterfront as he and other hotel workers and guest fight for their lives with gunmen rampaging through the building.
When I saw this trailer, I had initially forgotten about the attacks but seeing the images and looking up some information online, it brought these events back to my memory. I can't imagine what the people in those hotels went through during those attacks and it is good to see a portrayal of them here several years later.
I'm just a film buff who wants to watch great movies. Where else to find the best, than the list of those nominated by the Academy each year?