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Strange Magic 1
Lucasfilm
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‘Strange Magic’ Trailer: George Lucas’ Crazy Animated Fairy Tale

The trailer for ‘Strange Magic’ boasts that the film comes “from the mind of George Lucas.” That great big brain has dreamed up some of the greatest movies of all time. But it’s also produced its fair share of clunkers as well. (Apologies, ‘Radioland Murders’ devotees.) It’s unfair to write off a movie based on a 150-second trailer, but so far, ‘Strange Magic’ looks a lot closer to the latter than the former. Whoa, this looks insane.

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American Sniper cooper
Warner Bros.
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‘American Sniper’ Review: Clint Eastwood’s Aim Is Off With This Disappointing War Film

I wonder if Chris Kyle was a Clint Eastwood fan. ‘American Sniper’’s marketing materials describe Kyle as “the most lethal sniper in U.S. history,” but before his military career, Kyle was a cowboy. He wore a hat and boots, and even carried a six-shooter. Eventually, he gave up the cowboy life and decided to serve his country. He was a gifted marksman and trained to be a Navy SEAL. But even as a soldier, Kyle never lost that cowboy swagger—or that sense that someone has to venture out into the frontier and protect the American way of life. That’s what Kyle learned from his father—who raised him to be a “sheepdog,” a watchful protector in a world of sheep and wolves—and from watching violent Westerns like the ones that made Eastwood a major Hollywood star.

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The Interview Terrorist Attacks Sony Hackers
Sony Pictures
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‘The Interview’ Is Opening on Christmas After All (In Some Theaters and on VOD)

Full details are still forthcoming, but it looks like ‘The Interview’—Seth Rogen’s ultra-controversial comedy about an American assassination attempt on North Korean dictator Kim Jong-un—will open on Christmas after all. Sony initially cancelled their planned December 25 release after hackers threatened theaters that dared to show ‘The Interview’ with terrorist attacks, and many of the biggest exhibitor chains in the country (including Regal and AMC) subsequently decided not to run the film.

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Category: Entertainment, Movies Tags: ,
Team America Kim Jong-il
Paramount
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Paramount Bans ‘Team America’ Screenings in Wake of ‘The Interview’ Controversy

I know one reaction I’ve had to the (allegedly) North Korean hackers and their attack on Sony and their movie ‘The Interview’ is “Why now?” Seth Rogen and Evan Goldberg are not the first American filmmakers to make fun of North Korea, or even its real-life leaders. ‘Team America: World Police,’ for example, featured a marionette-version of late North Korean dictator Kim Jong-il, who wants to destroy Western Civilization (but is also very lonely); the 2012 ‘Red Dawn’ remake actually changed its Asian invaders from Chinese to North Koreans in post-production because at the time that seemed like the more politically and financially safe choice. That’s not going to happen again anytime soon.

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Category: Entertainment, Movies Tags:
Disney
Disney
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‘Star Wars: The Force Awakens’ Character Names Unveiled!

J.J. Abrams is famous for keeping secrets. His whole schtick as a director is the “mystery box”—finding pleasure in the unknown, and in the tease of that uncertainty. He didn’t show the monster in the trailer for ‘Cloverfield’; hell he didn’t even show the title of the movie in the trailer for ‘Cloverfield.’ If J.J. Abrams could release a movie without telling you anything about it, he probably would.

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The Battle of the Five Armies Bilbo
Warner Bros.
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‘The Hobbit: Battle of the Five Armies’ Review: Give Me Back My Precious (Time)

Having gone on an unexpected journey and endured the desolation of Smaug, Peter Jackson’s bloated adaptation of J.R.R. Tolkien’s ‘The Hobbit’ finally comes to ‘The Battle of the Five Armies,’ which is less of a climax to this trilogy than a distended epilogue. After spending two movies and 330 minutes building up the dragon Smaug (voiced by Benedict Cumberbatch) as the ultimate antagonist, he’s eliminated from the story completely in the first ten minutes. He’s literally gone before the title appears onscreen.

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maxtr
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‘Mad Max: Fury Road’ Trailer: This Post-Apocalyptic Chase Movie Looks Like a Gas

When ScreenCrush published its list of the best movie trailers of 2014, the staff consensus on the number one choice was immediate: The teaser for ‘Mad Max: Fury Road.’ Now there’s a full trailer for the film and ... it’s even better than the first one. Is it too late to have two ‘Mad Max’ clips on one list?

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San Andreas 1
Warner Bros.
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‘San Andreas’ Trailer: Dwayne Johnson Is Ready to Rumble (In a Really Big Earthquake)

This is a weird instance of art imitating life imitating art. Universal Studios Orlando’s famous old ‘Earthquake’ ride was recently updated and replaced with a similar attraction called ‘Disaster!’ where guests get to experience movie special effects, and become extras in the “ultimate” disaster movie called ‘Mutha Nature,’ which stars none other than Dwayne ‘The Rock’ Johnson. Next summer, Johnson will be seen in ‘San Andreas,’ which is basically ‘Mutha Nature’ brought to life.

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Category: Entertainment, Movies
Indiana Jones temp title screen
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This Vintage Paramount Pictures Promo Video Teases ‘Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade’ and ‘Hook’ Before They Even Had Titles

This is a fun little video curio to brighten your Monday. Tucked away in a random corner of YouTube for the last five years has been a clip titled ‘Paramount Today ... Where the Future Goes On.’ The description says it’s presumably something that was made by the studio “for Hollywood insiders [and] investors,” and it details the company’s upcoming slate for 1985 and the rest of the decade. And it’s a very entertaining, behind-the-scenes look at the movie hype machine some 30 years ago.

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Category: Entertainment, Movies
Best Movie Trailers 2014
Marvel/Warner Bros./Sony Pictures Classics/Warner Bros.
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The Best Movie Trailers of 2014

Trailers are a huge part of the fabric of movies. They play before every film shown in theaters, and on every movie website around the world. They’re commercials, obviously, but they’re also more than that; miniature works of art that utilize the core elements of cinema—image, sound, music, action, editing—at their most pure and refined. And today at ScreenCrush we’re celebrating movie trailers by saluting the best sneak previews of 2014.

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Grand Budapest Owen Wilson
Fox Searchlight
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Celebrate the Best Movies of 2014 With This Great Supercut

Every year, Little White Lies Editor-at-Large David Ehrlich celebrates the best movies with a video countdown supercut. The newly released 2014 edition is typically excellent, and covers Ehrlich’s picks for the top 25 films of the calendar year (even if I might quibble with some of his individual choices coughsomethinginmythroatnotreallyIjustdon’tlike‘Godzilla’cough).

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Category: Entertainment, Movies
TriStar
TriStar
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The T-800 Is Back in the ‘Terminator Genisys’ Motion Poster

Even as a nearly lifelong ‘Terminator’ and Arnold Schwarzenegger fan, it is tough to figure out what to expect from ‘Terminator Genisys.’ Those ultra-agro cast photos looked like a cosplay party gone wrong, the title looks like an autocorrect disaster, and the plot synopsis as we understand it right now (with Sarah Connor, played by Emilia Clarke, raised from childhood by a Terminator, played by Schwarzenegger, she calls “Pops”) sounds ... weird. Like, really weird.

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