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The Real Reason The Meg Feasted at the Box Office

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“Late last week, it seemed as though the very expensive, very Stathamy underwater thriller The Meg was on its way to becoming a dead shark. Even though the film—an adaptation of the 1997 novel by Steve Alten—had an online fanbase more than 20 years old, most predictions pointed toward a relatively low opening weekend at the box office. For a movie with a megalodon-sized $150 million estimated budget, this was ominous news. So were the The Meg‘s mostly meh reviews.

By Sunday night, however, the movie had become one of the year’s few Hollywood surprise stories, making $45 million in one of the highest debuts of the year. That turnout helped obliterate the weekend’s other long-in-the-works thriller: Slender Man, the adaptation(?) of a nearly 10-year-old meme that originated in the world of web-borne urban legends known as “creepypasta.” Slender Man earned far less than The Meg, making about $10 million. That was better than expected for a barely marketed schlock thriller. But it will likely disappear from theaters soon, considering its damning D– grade on audience-reaction tracker CinemaScore. To get an idea of how uniquely calamitous that is, consider that 2015’s Fantastic Four—a movie that actually ends with this scene—wound up a mere C– score.

Both The Meg and Slender Man are, in their own ways, “internet movies,” a hazy descriptor that can be applied to any film with a uniquely nutty prerelease relationship with the web. Internet movies tend to fall within two categories: The majority are like The Meg, which was embraced online in the weeks or months (or even decades) before its arrival. A film like Slender Man is far rarer, as it works in reverse…………….”

Read more: https://www.wired.com/story/the-meg-slender-man-internet-movies/

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Why the dance numbers in the new ‘Aladdin’ are so disappointing

Charmaine Blake

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‘Remember the steps. Remember your training. Do not embarrass us.’

Image: Daniel Smith/disney

“Disney’s highly anticipated Aladdin is here, but we know better than to expect anything groundbreaking from another needless live-action adaptation. While remake has pleasantly surprised most critics with colorful costumes and charismatic leads, Aladdin‘s signature songs are its biggest disappointment.

From Mashable’s own Angie Han: “Guy Ritchie and his team seem to have no idea how to stage and shoot a musical number,” which is precisely the opposite of what you want to hear about the director of a movie musical (much less one who was married to Madonna).

So, where and how did Aladdin botch its opportunities for movie musical greatness? Let us count the ways.

Image: giphy

Aladdin is tricky to negotiate from a representational standpoint because it was never based on one specific culture. The animated film was an amalgam of Middle Eastern and South Asian visual inspirations, and the live-action takes this at face value, doing the same and adding literally nothing to it. This piece references Bollywood dance numbers a few times, not because of any confusion about where Aladdin takes place, but because India has a booming film industry that thrives on movie musicals that Disney would’ve done well to study…………………………………………………”

Read more: https://mashable.com/article/aladdin-dancing/

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How The Blair Witch Project changed horror for ever

Charmaine Blake

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The movie’s marketing took advantage of trust in the early internet, but fake news isn’t what it used to be

“We will never get a movie like The Blair Witch Project again. Having said that, weve had dozens of movies like The Blair Witch Project. In the 20 years since its release, it has transformed the horror landscape, and more besides. Found footage is now a sub-genre in itself thanks to it. How many horror movies have we seen claiming: This all really happened, honest? How many occult symbols and folk myths have crossed our screens? How many gung-ho teens have set off on an adventure, never to return? And how many times has a gimmicky horror reaped rewards for virtually no outlay? Blair Witch did not invent all these tricks but it put them together to create a phenomenon. It is the 21st centurys Exorcist………………………………………………….”

Read more: https://www.theguardian.com/film/2019/apr/08/how-the-blair-witch-project-changed-horror-for-ever

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Yes, ‘New Mutants’ is still coming, Probably.

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Jean Grey comes into her powers in ‘Dark Phoenix’.

Image: 20th Century Fox

“The X-Men are part of the Disney family now, and never has that felt clearer than at the studio’s CinemaCon presentation Wednesday.

Disney touted both Dark Phoenix and New Mutants as part of its upcoming slate, alongside the usual Avengers and Star Wars and Pixa

What exactly the X-Men’s future looks like at the Mouse House, though, remains unclear.

Deadpool clearly isn’t going anywhere. “You’ll be seeing more of Deadpool in the years ahead,” promised studio chairman Alan Horn, after sharing Ryan Reynolds’ cheeky tweet about Fox joining Disney.

And New Mutants, despite delayed release dates, reports of reshoots, and rumors of a straight-to-streaming distribution plan, does seem to be headed to cinemas — it was included on a slide of Disney’s 2019 theatrical releases.

But the core X-Men franchise led by James McAvoy, Michael Fassbender, Jennifer Lawrence, and Sophie Turner is evidently coming to a conclusion. Dark Phoenix, out this summer, was described by 20th Century Fox’s Emma Watts as “the perfect sendoff” to the X-Men series……………………………………………………….”

Read more: https://mashable.com/article/dark-phoenix-deadpool-xmen-disney-cinemacon/

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