Kristy Puchko is a film critic/movie blogger who has written for Cinema Blend, Next Movie, Jezebel, The Film Stage, and Critical Mob. You can read her movie reviews here, or follow her on Twitter @KristyPuchko
Often felt in the hormone-fueled heydays of youth, first love can be a frenzy of overwhelming passion and dizzying lust. So of course it's a sensational jumping off point for drama. Add in a dash of deep parental disapproval, and you've got the stuff of Shakespeare. Sadly, while the new movie 'Endless Love' has the premise for great romantic drama, it lacks the conviction and execution, coming up boring where it should be bold.
Few things scream "cash grab" as loudly as a movie about a popular children's toy, as these productions rely highly on the brand recognition of children and nostalgia of adults. Making a good movie inspired by pre-existing playthings is such a rare thing that it almost seems impossible. Thankfully, Phil Lord and Chris Miller -- the directing duo behind the charming 'Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs' and the hilarious '21 Jump Street' reboot -- are known for turning terrible-sounding projects into spectacularly entertaining adventures. And they've done the impossible with 'The LEGO Movie', creating a wonderful narrative that perfectly captures the wonder and joy of playing with the iconic building blocks.
After New Line's live-action 'Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles' movie grossed more than $200 million worldwide, the heroes in a half-shell were guaranteed a sequel. That came just a year later in 1991 in the form of 'Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles II: The Secret of the Ooze.' This turtle-powered action movie didn't fare as well at the box office, but was nonetheless beloved by kids that couldn't get enough of these pizza-loving crime fighters.
Last week saw the release of Vanessa Hudgens' brave dramatic turn in 'Gimme Shelter.' This week, her 'High School Musical' co-star Zac Efron tries his hand at R-rated comedy with the rom-com for dudes and by dudes, 'That Awkward Moment.' So, has he made his next step from child star to accomplished adult actor as powerfully as she did? In a word: no.
After former Disney kid Vanessa Hudgens scored the spotlight with a string of family-friendly 'High School Musical' movies, she began the tricky trek from child star to respected ingénue. Her first step was to shake up her image with steamy roles in controversial features like 'Sucker Punch' and 'Spring Breakers.' Now with the coming-of-age indie 'Gimme Shelter,' Hudgens strives to show how committed she is to her craft, by casting vanity out the door and digging deep into drama.
In 2012, 'The Hunger Games' was not only critically acclaimed; it was also the third highest grossing blockbuster of the year, coming in behind 'The Avengers' and 'The Dark Knight Rises.' This meant Francis Lawrence, who took over directing duties for the film series after Gary Ross bowed out, has an incredibly high bar to meet with the adaptation of Suzanne Collins' second novel in her trilogy, 'The Hunger Games: Catching Fire.' We're elated to report that he's created a sequel that is bigger, bolder and all around better than its solid predecessor, helped in part by an extraordinary cast and a lusher budget.
Everybody's always picking on Michael Bay. You know, because of 'Transformers, 'Transformers 2' and pretty much every other film he's directed. But give the guy a chance, maybe get to know him a little bit and then go watch 'Pain and Gain' not with the burning humiliation that this is a movie from the 'Armageddon' guy, but that you're watching a film made by the man who directed your favorite milk commercial. Yes, that milk commercial. Here are 10 things you didn't know about Michael Bay.
If Hollywood teaches us anything, it's that nothing is sacred. No matter how distinctive or beloved a movie might be, it could well be subject to a remake. Just this year we'll be seeing reboots of 'Evil Dead,' 'Carrie' and 'Old Boy.' And in the works are revamps of 'RoboCop,' 'The Naked Gun' and 'Escape From New York.'
It's the movie that taught us the phrase "Carpe Diem." It's the film that forged our long-lasting crush on Robert Sean Leonard and Ethan Hawke. It is the Oscar-winning coming-of-age drama that made boarding schools seem dreamy yet nightmarish. It is 'Dead Poets Society.'
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