Do you wanna build a snowman... again? Disney sure hopes so, as they announced in a new press release today that their mega-successful Frozen would gain a sort of mini-sequel in an upcoming short to be bundled with Coco. But Olaf’s Frozen Adventure is no ordinary lead-in to the main event; it sounds like quite a bit has gone into the short that Disney repeatedly refers to as a “featurette,” running at 21 minutes and including four new songs, as well as returning cast members Josh Gad, Kristen Bell, Idina Menzel, and Jonathan Groff. Parents, batten down the hatches, for a new ‘Let It Go’ is close at hand.
The suit makes the man, and that’s seldom more true than for the superhero set. Batman would be another joe-schmo billionaire industrialist without the arsenal of weaponry built into his armor, Iron Man would literally die without his hardware, and now we can add Peter Parker to the list of superheroes whose own clothes act as unofficial sidekick. In the latest trailer for upcoming threeboot Spider-Man: Homecoming, we get a glimpse of some nifty new modifications (courtesy of Stark Industries) to Spidey’s trademark red-and-blue spandex. A new generation’s Spider-Man needs some modern upgrades, and the latest iteration of the suit includes a detachable mini-drone and what I can only describe as “skintight suction technology.”
Mildred Hayes has had it. It’s been weeks since her daughter was brutally raped and murdered, and the local police force in Ebbing, Missouri don’t have a single perp to show for all their efforts. Feeling disrespected and unheard, Mildred does the only thing an ordinary citizen at the end of their rope can do: she clarifies which cursewords you can put on a billboard and puts a message right where area sheriff Willoughby will see it. Them’s fightin’ words on her billboards, reading “RAPED WHILE DYING. STILL NO ARRESTS. HOW COME, CHIEF WILLOUGHBY?” And in the newly released red-band trailer begins a long, farcical, spiteful conflict between one-woman army MIldred and the local cops.
When noted British actor and confirmed Caucasian male Joseph Fiennes announced last year that he’d play Michael Jackson for an upcoming TV series called Urban Myths, the public had an understandably adverse reaction. Though Fiennes confirmed that he’d portray the King of Pop after he got his controversial skin-whitening procedure, the fact remains that a white man would be playing an African-American man in a confusing sort of blackface without a literal black face. The Fiennes’ credit, he’s confessed to The Hollywood Reporter that he understands “why people are up in arms,” but hopes that audiences will be a little more understanding when they see that the show takes all sorts of liberties with the personal lives of historical figures.
It’s not uncommon for movie studios to recycle their sets between productions, or for different crews to make use of the same locations. For sharp-eyed viewers, this can create the surreal effect of fictional universes overlapping and coexisting with one another. Take Hogan’s Heroes, for instance: the company behind the popular POW camp-set sitcom put the compound on which they shot most of their episodes up for sale after they had wrapped. It was later used for numerous other shoots, most notably in the pornographic Nazi-exploitation film Ilsa, She-Wolf of the S.S.
It’s the Friday before Christmas. Those of us who aren’t currently concealing the fact that we’ve slumped over at our desks in a eggnog-hangover-induced nap have glued our eyes to the clock, counting down the minutes to a leisurely holiday break. Everyone just wants to get home, gather with family or other loved ones around a crackling fire, put on the musical stylings of Burl Ives or Bing Crosby, and have a nice mug of hot cocoa. Time slows to a crawl on the Friday before a long weekend, and we both know you’re not getting any work done today, so why not kick back with the soothing sounds of Chewbacca moaning out a classic Christmas standard?
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