Possibly? Not sure really. I think it’s kind of the flip side of the Truman Show. Rather than being unaware that he’s in a show that everyone watches, he watches a show that he’s unaware is only for him.
I saw an interesting review that pointed out that it only flopped domestically and if you look at how it was scripted it seems to have been aimed at non-English speakers.
All of these “why they failed” post mortems are interesting, but they tend to concentrate on the things the person writing them was annoyed by.
You can get the same level on insight… well here!
For the record, I think 'The Mummy’s problems are probably down to it being made by a committee, far more than even other films out there this year.
A movie like this, intended to launch, not just one franchise, but a franchise of franchises, and starring two very expensive actors, is going to be subject to enormous amounts of “help” from everyone at Universal with an office and a job title to protect.
We all know that a lot of the big movies are not made in the traditional “write - shoot - edit” order necessary for lower budgeted films. Instead they design and storyboard, THEN write, shoot, rewrite while shooting, reshoot, rewrite some more, reshoot some more, edit and reshoot, create VFX and reshoot and re-edit and rewrite some more and reshoot and loop and redo some VFX and then finally assemble the pieces as best they can and release the end result.
It’s a miracle any of these movies work.
They’ve essentially industrialised the cut-up method of writing!
It’s not even new, really, we’ve just been fed a myth for decades about what the filmmaking process is.
Classic films like ‘Casablanca’ went through dozens of writers, well into production and post production, all of it documented, with notes, memos and (of course) invoices for the work.
The longer I’ve been involved in all this stuff, even on the TV and lower budgeted film end, the more annoyed I’ve become with the bullshit. Not the bullshit in the job (well, some of that too) but the bullshit about the job.
The PR machine tells a lot of porkies to help sell the movies and some of them are more about tradition than really any need these days.
Even something that’s seen as an auteur work, like Star Wars does the same. There’s a website out there with a good dozen earlier drafts of Lucas’ script, and notes about changes to the story of Return of the Jedi, and other bits that basically prove he was being less than honest with his narrative about how it was all planned out.
Similarly, if you’re not aware of it the production of Star Trek: The Motion Picture is fraught with drama and is a fascinating look into how dysfunctional a movie production can be.
Yes exactly. I think I’m pretty safe in saying the low box office wasn’t due to fans of the 1932 original.
Mark Kermode’s review was close to your reading of it. He felt it was like bits of other movies stitched together and not done as well.
Now there’s a remake nobody needed.
Say what you will about the original movie (and I feel like rewatching it now), but it did star three of the most recognisable actors of its time (and William Baldwin).
This one has Ellen Page and, uh, apparently that guy was on an episode of Black Mirror or something.
Diego Luna was in Star Wars, Kiersey Clemons is going to be in The Flash/Justice League, Nina Dobrev was the lead in The Vampire Diaries for six years, and James Norton is in Grantchester and Happy Valley in the UK.
Not huge stars, but I recognised them all.
The original got lucky with Julia Roberts having Pretty Woman come out right before it.
Yeah that’s how I remembered it, Roberts wasn’t big when it was made. Then Pretty Woman was massive.
Sure. But Bacon and Sutherland both were huge, as representatives of their generation of actors, at the time.
The important thing being that Flatliners worked precisely because it had those actors and because it was an interesting time to tread the territory between mainstream and horror movie. It was a good movie for what it was back then, but it’s not exactly a concept that cries out to be re-made - the idea itself was also of its time, and not one that being remade will treat kindly, I think. Especially not with actors that nobody gives a crap about.
The trailer also just doesn’t look very interesting, but I still might be marginally interesting if it wasn’t contrasted in my mind with what made Flatliners work back then.
The Guardian has a nice summary of the films coming out this Summer:
On another page they gave Okja a 5 star review so having not heard of it before I’m looking forward to it on Netflix (who are funding it and it only has a very limited cinema release, most probably to qualify for any awards).
Okja’s the new Bong Joon-ho movie. His last one, Snowpiercer, got no release in the UK/Ireland (and is only available on DVD/BR via import), so a limited release is an improvement.
Okja was co-written by Jon Ronson, which is a curious match of sensibilities.
Yeah I saw the Ronson article, I’m a big fan and have read all his books, he says he was hired to give the English speaking characters some depth and better dialogue as Bong couldn’t manage it with English as his second language.
Have you seen it recently? I haven’t, but a quick google search shows it be a very stylized, 90’s pop video looking film.
I’m not that impressed by this trailer, I think the CGI afterlife imagery isn’t very engaging and the film will depend utterly on it’s cast but… I’m also fine with its cast.
So “nobody gives a crap about” may be exagerating a bit.