Film Review: “The Invisible Man”

THE INVISIBLE MAN
Starring:  Elisabeth Moss, Oliver Jackson-Cohen
Directed by: Leigh Whannell
Rated:  R
Running time:  2 hrs 4 mins
Universal

There’s a great joke I first heard in the eighth grade that deals with a mishap involving Superman, Wonder Woman and the Invisible Man.  I can’t relate it hear but believe me, the punchline is killer.  So is the latest incarnation of the Invisible Man.

We open on a couple in bed.  As Adrian (Jackson-Cohen) sleeps, Cecilia (Moss) gets up, gathers some things and makes her way quietly out of the state of the art house.  Doing her best to avoid cameras and not set off alarms, she makes her way to the road, where a ride is waiting.  But she will soon find out that you can’t run away from some things, no matter how hard you try.

Genuinely terrifying, with a tour-de-force performance by Ms. Moss, “The Invisible Man” starts off slowly and clumsy.  20-minutes in I resigned myself to the fact that I was going to see a rehash of “Sleeping with the Enemy,” only with a Patrick Bergin that I couldn’t see.  But just as that thought came into my head, writer/director Whannell flipped the switch, taking the film into directions I never would have imagined.

There have been many attempts at filming H.G. Wells’ story of a man with the power of invisibility, from the 1933 Universal Horror Classic “The Invisible Man” starring Claude Rains to the 2000 Kevin Bacon-starrer “Hollow Man.”  Heck, even Kurt Russell and Chevy Chase have taken comedic shots at the story.  But here, the main theme is terror, especially to an audience who is on the edge of their seats, intently staring at the screen and looking for the slightest hint the bad guy is there.

Moss is a revelation here.  Best known for her television and streaming work (“Mad Men,” “The Handmaids Tale”) and a strong supporting turn in last year’s Jordan Peele horror masterpiece, “Us,” she has the unenviable job of basically interacting with a character that the audience never sees.  Whether arguing, pleading or physically fighting with our villain, it’s just her on the screen, yet you feel her terror, especially when she is violently struggling with an entity that she (nor the audience) can see.  Mr. Whannell, no stranger to horror thanks to his involvement in the “Saw” and “Insidious” film series, keeps the pace moving (after the first half-hour) and uses his camera as an almost additional character.  The musical score, by Benjamin Wallfisch (“IT,” “Bladerunner: 2049), helps set the mood as well.  The result is the most terrifying film since the aforementioned “Us.”  By all means, go see it…even if you can’t SEE it!

Win Passes to the Kansas City Screening of “The Invisible Man”

Media Mikes has teamed up with their friends at Universal to give readers the chance to be among the first to see the new film “The Invisible Man” at an advance Kansas City screening.

The film, starring Elizabeth Moss, will screen on Tuesday, February 25 at the AMC Studio 18 Theatre in Olathe, Kansas. The screening will begin at 7:00 pm.

All you have to do for a chance to attend is click HERE! On Monday, February 24th, random entries will be selected and will be sent their passes via email. Good Luck!

The 10 Best Films of the Past Decade (2010-2019)

This past week Media Mikes celebrated their 10th Anniversary. It seems like only yesterday when Mike Gencarelli and I, who were at the time writing for other websites, decided to start our own. We were Movie Mikes for awhile, until Mike G. had the brilliant idea of helping to promote the upcoming AMC series “The Walking Dead.” His interview series put a big spotlight on the site and convinced us that, rather than be a movie inclusive site, we would cover the entire spectrum of Pop Culture. Hello, Media Mikes.

Since that time we (Mike G, myself and our amazing staff of writers) have reviewed over 1,000 theatrically released films and almost another 2,000 films on DVD/Blu-ray. We’ve told you what we’ve liked and what we haven’t. This week, Jeremy Werner and I have compiled our lists of the Best Films of the past decade. Let us know if you agree with us or if there was a film you think we missed.

Michael A. Smith’s 10 Best Films of the Decade

1917 Might as well start with the most recent of the group. An intriguing story that takes you along with it, thanks to the brilliant direction of Sam Mendes and the amazing Oscar-winning Cinematography by Roger Deakins.

The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo David Fincher at his best. I had not (nor have I) seen the original Swedish trilogy but I walked out of this film stunned by Fincher’s handiwork.

The Birth of a Nation Due to negative publicity surrounding filmmaker Nate Parker, this film never got the true recognition it deserved. A tour-de-force for Parker who not only directed and co-wrote the film but starred in it as well.

All the Money in the World Director Ridley Scott took a huge gamble when, due to the negative publicity surrounding star Kevin Spacey, and with the film already completed and awaiting release, he recast Spacey’s role with Christopher Plummer and re-shot all of Spacey’s scenes. Plummer would go on to receive an Oscar nomination for his work.

Bohemian Rhapsody” THIS is what a bio-pic should be. The story of the greatest front man in Rock and Roll history with a brilliant, Oscar-winning performance by Rami Malik. This is the film ROCKETMAN wanted to be.

Get Out Jordan Peele re-wrote the rules on horror films with this Academy Award winning masterpiece. He continued on a roll with his follow-up film, “US.”

Les Miserables Hugh Jackman may be the Wolverine to most of the world but to me he delivered his best performance ever here.

Unbroken” An inspirational true story of heroism and faith capably directed by Angelina Jolie.

Skyfall” Sean Connery will always be the definitive James Bond, but what Daniel Craig has brought to the character is nothing short of brilliant. His final appearance as Bond is due this year. Bring on Idris Elba!

The Marvel Cinematic Universe. This 23-film series (I’m including this past year’s “Spider-man: Far From Home”) is sure to be a blueprint followed by studios until the end of time. When Robert Downey, Jr informs the smug Thanos “I am Ironman” at the end of “Avengers: End Game” the emotional roller coaster takes one more powerful dip.

Jeremy Werner’s Lists

Instead of the stereotypical Top 10, I cheated a lot on my “Best of the Decade” list. Mainly because I find it incredibly difficult to narrow down my choices to a top 10, much less a top 15. So I created three lists, and put them in no particular order, so I can share my love for these movies that still resonate with me in 2020. I also didn’t want to reveal any biases that I may have on this list, so I didn’t include any description as to why I adore these films.

Best of the Decade

“Inception”
“Spider-Man Into the Spiderverse”
“Drive”
“1917”
“Nightcrawler”
“Won’t You Be My Neighbor?”

“Silver Linings Playbook”
“The Lego Movie”
“Mad Max: Fury Road”
“Swiss Army Man”

“Eighth Grade”
“The Grand Budapest Hotel”
“Inside Out”
“Gravity”
“12 Years a Slave”
“Wolf of Wall Street”
“Inside Out”
“Zootopia”
“Get Out”
“Parasite”

Honorable Mentions:
Midsommar
“Bridesmaids”
“Edge of Tomorrow”
“Detroit”
“Hell or High Water”
“Baby Driver”
“Life of Pi”
“Scott Pilgrim vs the World”
“Blade Runner 2049”
“Sicario”
“Blackkklansman”
“Dredd”
“Under the Skin”
“The Spectacular Now”
“The Florida Project”

So Weird, Shocking, or Unexplainable, they have to be mentioned, even if they aren’t great:
“Climax”
Mandy
“Sorry to Bother You”
“Mom and Dad”
“One Cut of the Dead”
“The Neon Demon”
“The Greasy Strangler”
“mother!”
“Hobo with a Shotgun”
“We are the Flesh”

Michael D. Smith’s 10 Best Films of the Decade

Coming up with a top ten list for a year is difficult enough, but it is at least ten times more maddening to finalize the best of a decade! So, I cheated a bit and added five honorable mentions. As I looked back, I picked those that pushed the envelope in some way or left an impression with me that still reverberates to present day. Beginning with #10…

10. “Hell or High Water”
9. “Prisoners”
8. “Inception”
7. “Ex Machina”
6. “A Quiet Place”
5. “The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo”
4. “The Revenant”
3. “Get Out”
2. “Lincoln”
1. “12 Years A Slave”

Honorable Mentions:
“Snowpiercer”
“The Skin I Live In”
“Logan”
“Arrival”
“Interstellar”

Blu-ray Review: “JoJo Rabbit”

  • JOJO RABBIT
  • Starring:  Roman Griffin Davis, Thomasin McKenzie and Scarlett Johansson
  • Fox Searchlight
  • Running Time: 108 mins
  • Film: 5 out of 5 stars
  • Extras: 4 out of 5 stars

Nominated for six Academy Awards and much-deserved winner of the Oscar for Best Adapted Screenplay, “JoJo Rabbit” is unlike anything you’d ever expect to see.  Unless, of course, you were looking to see a film about a young German boy during World War II whose best (and imaginary) friend is Adolf Hitler.

10-year old JoJo (Davis) lives with his mother, Rosie (Johansson) in a small town in Germany.  It is the time of the second world war and, like a good German boy, JoJo is anticipating his upcoming trip to the Kinderlandverschickung, which was a camp designed to indoctrinate young boys and girls into the ways of the Nazi party.  Think of it as the boy/girl scouts but with grenades.  JoJo can’t wait to wear the uniform and display the dagger given to all of the Hitler Youth.  However, after declaring that he is ready to kill for the Fuhrer, he is given a rabbit to kill to prove his fierceness.  Unable to do so, he attempts to set the rabbit free, earning him the mocking laughter of his fellow campers and the nickname “JoJo Rabbit.”  Despite this shame, he is encouraged to walk the Nazi Party line by his imaginary friend, Hitler himself (played by the film’s writer/director Taika Waititi),  To make matters worse, JoJo discovers that his mother is hiding a young Jewish girl (McKenzie) in their house.  Whatever is a young Nazi to do?

Brilliantly written and skillfully directed, “JoJo Rabbit” is well deserving of its Oscar nominations, among them Best Picture.  You have to walk a fine line to be able to laugh at one of the most horrible times in our world’s history and Mr. Waititi walks it like he was a member of the Wallenda family.  The film is also carried by the amazing performances delivered.  Mr. Davis, who was eleven years old when he made the film (his first professional acting gig) received a Golden Globe nomination for Best Actor in a Comedy or Musical and, if not for the strong field this year, could have quite easily been up for an Oscar as well.  Also turning in fine work are Ms. McKenzie and Ms. Johansson, who was named the year’s Best Supporting Actress by the readers of Media Mikes earlier this year for her work here.  Strong supporting work from Sam Rockwell, Rebel Wilson, Stephen Merchant and Mr. Waititi round out a flawless cast. 

There are some great supplements included under the EXTRA tab, including three deleted scenes, Outtakes, a nice behind-the-scenes featurette and an insightful audio commentary by writer/director Taika Waititi.  Also included are the film’s teaser and theatrical trailer.

Film Review: “Downhill”

DOWNHILL
Starring:  Will Ferrell and Julia Louis-Dreyfuss
Directed by:  Nat Faxon and Jim Rash
Rated: R
Searchlight Pictures       

WARNING:  Do not be fooled by the previews for the film “Downhill” which highlight a few humorous scenes from the film.  If it’s funny you’re looking for…this aint it!

Pete and Billie (Ferrell and Louis-Dreyfuss) have arrived in Austria for a skiing vacation with their children.  On the surface things seem fine and the first night in their hotel goes swimmingly.  The next morning Pete brings out his father’s old ski hat and we learn that he is still grieving the man’s passing several months before.  While lunching on the terrace of their chalet a “planned” avalanche heads towards the chalet and buries everyone on the terrace in a pile of snow.  Except for Pete.  At the moment of truth he has hopped off his chair, grabbed his cell phone and run off, leaving Billie to try to shield her sons from the white peril.  They are fine but Billie can not understand why Pete left them.  And here is where we learn the film’s title refers not to the skiing but to Pete and Billie’s relationship.  Are you laughing yet?

Based on a French film titled “Force Majeure” – a term which is defined as  “unforeseeable circumstances that prevent someone from fulfilling a contract” – “Downhill” is more a drama than a comedy.  Pete must deal with his feelings of loss regarding his father and the look of shame in his boy’s eyes for his cowardice.  Billie must deal with her perceived loss of trust in Pete to look out for and care for the family.  A “chance” meeting with one of Pete’s co-workers and his lady friend, both of whom seem carefree compared to Pete and Billie, only make things worse.  There are some funny parts but most of them are contributed by Miranda Otto who plays “Charlotte,” a lady at the chalet looking to enjoy her life and the adventures it holds.

Not to say that Ferrell and Louis-Dreyfuss aren’t fine in their roles.  They each handle the dramatics well.  I think it’s the fact that the film took me off guard concerning it’s theme that resulted in the rating I’ve given it.  I mean, I honestly think I laughed more at “Joker.”  Co-directors Faxon and Rash also did the same thing on a film I loved called “The Way Way Back.”  They also co-wrote it, as the did here along with Jessie Armstrong.  “The Way Way Back” was also a mix of drama and comedy but it had something that “Downhill” is clearly missing.  Heart.

Win Passes to the Kansas City Screening of “The Call of the Wild”

Media Mikes has teamed up with their friends at 20th Century Studios to give (50) readers and a guest the chance to be among the first to see the new film “The Call of the Wild,” starring Harrison Ford.

The film will be shown on Thursday, February 13th at the B &B Overland Park 16 in Overland Park, Kansas and will start at 7:00 pm

All you have to do to attend is click HERE. The first (50) readers to do so will receive a pass for (2) to attend the screening. This is a first come/first serve screening. Once the allotted number of passes have been claimed,t he giveaway is ended. Enjoy the show!

“Parasite,” Bong Joon-ho Make Oscar History

“Parasite,” the South Korean thriller directed by Bong Joon-ho, made Oscar history tonight when it became the first non-English language film to win Best Picture at the 92nd Annual Academy Awards.  In doing so, it took down more heavily favored films like “1917” and “Once Upon a Time…in Hollywood.” 

Director Bong Joon-ho became the first person to take home four awards in one ceremony, winning Oscars as the director, co-producer and co-writer of the film.  He also received the award as the director of the year’s Best International Feature Film.   

Joaquin Phoenix was named Best Actor for his work in “Joker” while Renee’ Zellwegger took home the Best Actress award for her portrayal of Hollywood legend Judy Garland in “Judy.” 

Supporting Oscars went to Brad Pitt for “Once Upon a Time…in Hollywood” and Laura Dern for “Marriage Story.”  Dern paid tribute to her parents, former Oscar nominees Bruce Dern and Diane Ladd, in her acceptance speech.  

“Toy Story 4” was named the years Best Animated Feature.   Here is a complete list of tonight’s winners:  

BEST PICTURE  

“Parasite”  

BEST DIRECTOR

Bong Joon-ho – “Parasite”

ACTOR IN A LEADING ROLE

Joaquin Phoenix – “Joker”

ACTRESS IN A LEADING ROLE

Renée Zellweger – “Judy”  

ACTOR IN A SUPPORTING ROLE

Brad Pitt –  “Once Upon a Time… in Hollywood”  

ACTRESS IN A SUPPORTING ROLE

Laura Dern – “Marriage Story”  

ORIGINAL SCREENPLAY

“Parasite” – screenplay by Bong Joon-ho and Han Jin-won  

ADAPTED SCREENPLAY

“Jojo Rabbit” – screenplay by Taika Waititi

BEST ANIMATED FEATURE

“Toy Story 4”  

INTERNATIONAL FEATURE FILM

“Parasite” – South Korea

DOCUMENTARY – FEATURE

“American Factory”  

DOCUMENTARY – SHORT SUBJECT

“Learning to Skateboard in a Warzone (If You’re a Girl)”  

LIVE ACTION SHORT FILM

“The Neighbors’ Window”  

ANIMATED SHORT FILM

“Hair Love”  

ORIGINAL SCORE

“Joker” – Hildur Guðnadóttir  

ORIGINAL SONG

“(I’m Gonna) Love Me Again,” from “Rocketman” written by Elton John and Bernie Taupin  

SOUND EDITING

“Ford v Ferrari”

SOUND MIXING

“Ford v Ferrari”

PRODUCTION DESIGN

“Once Upon a Time…in Hollywood”  

CINEMATOGRAPHY

“1917”

MAKEUP AND HAIRSTYLING

“Bombshell”

COSTUME DESIGN

“Little Women”  

FILM EDITING

“Ford v Ferrari”

VISUAL EFFECTS

“1917”

Kirk Douglas dead at 103

Kirk Douglas, one of the last remaining stars from Hollywood’s Golden Age, died today at the age of 103.  He leaves behind not only an amazing legacy on screen but one off of it as well.

Born Issur Danielovitch Demsky on December 9, 1916 in Amsterdam, New York, to Russian immigrant parents, the family adopted the last name of Demsky, which was the last name taken by his uncle, who came to America before his parents.  He spent his younger years working several jobs to help support his family – he had six sisters – and did so up until he joined the United States Navy.  Prior to enlisting he legally changed his name to Kirk Douglas.  He served on a submarine during World War II and was discharged in 1944 due to injuries sustained during an accident.

He began his acting career when he was granted a scholarship to the American Academy of Dramatic Arts.  He was able to support himself, barely, by doing a lot of radio work.  He made his stage debut when he replaced Richard Widmark in “Kiss and Tell.”  He made his film debut in 1946 after a former Dramatic Academy Classmate named Lauren Bacall recommend him to a director.  That film, “The Strange Love of Martha Ivers,” co-starred Barbara Stanwyck and help launch his extraordinary career.

Always enjoying his work in the theater, Douglas made his Broadway debut three years later.  That same year he starred in the film “Champion.”  His performance earned him his first of six Academy Award nominations.

For the next six decades he starred in some of the greatest films of their eras, including “The Bad and the Beautiful” (Oscar nomination), “20,000 Leagues Under the Sea,” “Lust for Life” (Oscar nomination), “Paths of Glory,” “Spartacus,” and “Seven Days in May.”

Douglas earned an Academy Award nomination for his portrayal of artist Vincent Van Gogh in “Lust for Life”

But it was more than his film work that Douglas will be remembered for.  Despite Dalton Trumbo’s name on the Hollywood “blacklist,” Douglas, who was also the executive producer of “Spartacus” not only hired Trumbo to write the screenplay for the film but gave him screen credit.  Douglas often said that hiring and supporting Trumbo was the proudest moment of his career.

He WAS Spartacus!

Douglas bought the rights to the Ken Kesey novel “One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest” and in 1963 had it adapted into a play, in which he starred.  He tried for many years to produce a film version of the play but could never find the monetary backing.  He gave the rights to the property to his son, Michael who, with producer Saul Zaentz financed the 1975 film version.  Though Douglas had played the main character of Randle McMurphy on stage, he was deemed too old to play the role on film.  The part went to Jack Nicholson, who won his first Academy Award for his performance.  The film went on to earn nine Academy Award nominations and became the second film in history to win the top five Oscar categories (Picture, Director, Actor, Actress and Screenplay).

In 1996 he was given an honorary Academy Award in recognition of his amazing career and for being  a creative and moral force in the motion picture community.

Douglas was married twice and is survived by his wife Ann, who will amazingly turn 101 in April, and sons Michael, Joel and Peter.  His youngest son, Eric, passed away in 2004.

Win Passes to the Kansas City Screening of “Downhill”

Media Mikes has teamed up with their friends from Fox Searchlight to give (35) readers and a guest the chance to be among the first to see the new comedy “Downhill,” starring Will Farrell and Julia Louis Dreyfuss.

The film will be screened on Monday, February 10th at the AMC Town Center 20 Theatre in Leawood, Kansas and will start at 7:00 pm

If you want to attend the screening, just click HERE. The first (35) readers to do so will receive a pass for (2) to attend the screening. This is a first come/first served giveaway. Once all allotted passes have been claimed the giveaway is ended. Good luck!

Win Passes to the Kansas City Screening of “The Photograph”

Media Mikes has teamed with their friends at Universal Pictures to give their Kansas City readers the chance to be among the first to see the new romantic comedy “The Photograph,” starring Issa Rae and Lakeith Stanfield.

The film will be screened on Wednesday, February 12th at the Cinemark 20 and XD Cinemas in Merriam, Kansas and will start at 7:30 pm.

If you’d like to attend, please click HERE. Random entries will be chosen on February 10th and the winners notified. Good luck!

NO PURCHASE REQUIRED.

THE PHOTOGRAPH has been rated PG-13 (Parents Strongly Cautioned – Some Material May Be Inappropriate for Children Under 13) for sexuality and brief strong language.

Blu-ray Review: “Harriet”

Starring: Cynthia Erivo, Joe Alwyn and Vondie Curtis-Hall
Focus Features
Running Time: 125 minutes
Film: 3.5 out of 5 stars
Extras: 3.5 out of 5 stars

In 1920 the United States passed the 19th Amendment, which gave the women in America the chance to vote.  Part of the celebration planned for this year was to be the issuing of new $20 bills featuring the image of Harriet Tubman, an honor long overdue.

We find ourselves in the deep-south in the early 1850s.  “Minty” Ross is a slave on the Brodess Plantation.  She recently married John Tubman, a free man, and the couple implore Mr. Brodess to allow Minty to be free as well, even going so far as to offer a letter from a lawyer.  Needless to say, Mr. B is not keen on the idea and tells them “no.”  Minty is so upset she runs off and secretly prays for death to visit Mr. Brodess sooner rather than later.  One wish granted, another denied.

Featuring a powerful (and Oscar-nominated) performance by Cynthia Erivo, “Harriet” is a well-intentioned film that unfortunately isn’t as powerful as its star.  We learn that Minty suffers from “spells,” which she considers to be visions from God.  When she is put up for sale she runs away, with the hope of a local preacher (the always impressive Vondie Curtis-Hall) and eventually finds herself in Philadelphia.  Having left her family behind, she resolves to return to free them as well.  Soon she is caught up in what is referred to as “The Underground Railroad,” and proves herself to be a great conductor.  And that is pretty much the story in a nutshell.  We don’t really learn much about Harriet (the “freed woman” name she has taken) except that she loved her family and was instrumental in helping dozens of slaves escape their bondage.  Not a lot of insight.  It is an important and inspirational story and, in my mind, there was  lot more I wanted to learn about Harriet.

On the plus side, the performances are very strong, especially Ms. Erivo, who not only earned an Academy Award nomination for her acting here but also one for the song “Stand Up,” which she co-wrote.  The direction is strong, the pace is smoothly mapped out and John Toll’s cinematography is breathtaking.   That being said, Ms. Erivo’s performance alone is reason enough to recommend this film.

Extras include deleted scenes, an all too short look at the real Harriet Tubman and a very entertaining audio commentary by director and co-writer Kasi Lemmons.

Sadly, in typical government fashion, Harriet Tubman will NOT be honored on the $20 bill this year.  Last I read that won’t happen until 2028. 

Film Review: “Bad Boys for Life”

BAD BOYS FOR LIFE
Starring:  Will Smith, Martin Lawrence and Joe Pantoliano
Directed by: Adil and Billal
Rated:  R
Running time:  2 hrs 3 mins
Sony Pictures

Riggs and Murtaugh.  Carter and Lee.  Tango and Cash. 

The law enforcement teams above are some of the most beloved in film history.  Another powerhouse was the team of Miami-based cops named Mike Lowrey and Marcus Burnett.  Starting with 1995’s “Bad Boys” and continuing with the 2003 sequel “Bad Boys 2,” the two blazed their way across the screen with flashy cars and blazing guns.  It’s been awhile, but Lowrexy (Smith) and Burnett (Lawrence) are back…and it’s a welcome return.

It’s an ordinary day at the women’s prison.  In the laundry, the inmates do their best to fold and stack.  However, one inmate (Kate del Castillo) is motionless, staring off as if she was in a trance.  When she’s approached she suddenly springs to life.  The carnage that follows is horrific.

Meanwhile, in Miami, Detectives Lowery and Burnett are speeding through the streets in Lowery’s Porsche.  Their destination:  the local hospital, where Burnett’s daughter is about to give birth.  The new grandchild causes Burnett to rethink his future and soon he informs Lowery and their captain (the always great Joe Pantoliano) that he is going to retire.  But when you’re a “bad boy” do you ever really retire?

Moving at an almost breakneck speed, “Bad Boys for Life” plays on screen like a live action version of “Grand Theft Auto.”  The pace is fast, yet the plot never feels rushed.  Smith and Lawrence have great chemistry together and their playful banter feels natural.  They are assisted by strong supporting turns from Paola Nunez and rapper DJ Khaled, who does well in a small role.  And for fans of the original, keep your eyes open for a cameo from “Bad Boys” director Michael Bay. If you wanted a movie poster or or canvas print American Sign Letters can do it for you.  

The production values are outstanding, with all of the light and color of Miami on display.  And I don’t know what cops in Miami make but Lowery seems quite comfortable in his penthouse pad and speedy Porsche.  All in all, a fine return to the screen for Lowrey and Burnett.  Now whatcha’ gonna do ‘til they come back for you?

Win Passes to the Kansas City Screening of “The Gentlemen”

Media Mikes has teamed up with their friends at STX Entertainment to give (50) readers and a guest the chance to be among the first to see the new film from director Guy Ritchie, “The Gentlemen.”

The film will be shown on Wednesday, January 22 at the Screenland Armour Theatre in North Kansas City, Missouri. The screening will begin at 7:00 pm.

If you’d like to attend all you have to do is click HERE! The first (50) readers to do so will receive a pass for (2) to attend the screening. This is a first come/first serve giveaway. Once the allotted number of passes have been claimed the giveaway is over. Good Luck!!

It’s No Joke – “Joker” nabs 11 Academy Award nominations!

“Joker,” director Todd Phillips’ “origin” tale about Batman’s greatest foe scored a total of 11 Academy Award nominations today, leading all films this year.  The film earned nods in several major categories, including Best Picture, Best Director (for Phillips) and Best Actor for Joaquin Phoenix.  “1917” and “Once Upon a Time…in Hollywood” tied for second place with 10 nominations each.

This year saw an amazing batch of first time nominees, many who have done award-worthy work in the past and have never been recognized.  They include Antonio Bandares (“Pain and Glory”) and Jonathan Pryce (“The Two Popes”) for Best Actor and Florence Pugh (“Little Women”) for Best Supporting Actress.  Scarlett Johansson earned her first two nominations this year, scoring nods for Best Actress (“Marriage Story”) and Best Supporting Actress (“Jo Jo Rabbit”).  But no less than eight of the acting nominees have Oscars already on their mantle while others, like Brad Pitt and Phoenix, have been nominated several times in the past.   The South Korean film “Parasite” also did well, earning six nominations, including Best Picture and Best International Feature Film (formerly Best Foreign Film).

Composer John Williams received his 52nd nomination for his score the “Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker.”  Here are the nominees in the major categories:

BEST PICTURE

FORD v FERRARI

THE IRISHMAN

JOJO RABBIT

JOKER

LITTLE WOMEN

MARRIAGE STORY

1917

ONCE UPON A TIME…IN HOLLYWOOD

PARASITE

BEST DIRECTOR

Martin Scorsese – THE IRISHMAN

Todd Phillips – JOKER

Sam Mendes – 1917

Quentin Tarantino – ONCE UPON A TIME…IN HOLLYWOOD

Bong Joo Ho – PARASITE

BEST ACTOR IN A LEADING ROLE

Antonio Banderas – PAIN AND GLORY

Leonardo DiCaprio – ONCE UPON A TIME…IN HOLLYWOOD

Adam Driver – MARRIAGE STORY

Joaquin Phoenix – JOKER

Jonathan Pryce – THE TWO POPES

BEST ACTRESS IN A LEADING ROLE

Cynthia Erivo – HARRIET

Scarlett Johansson – MARRIAGE STORY

Saoirse Ronan – LITTLE WOMEN

Charlize Theron – BOMBSHELL

Renee’ Zellwegger – JUDY

BEST SUPPORTING ACTOR

Tom Hanks – A BEAUTIFUL DAY IN THE NEIGHBORHOOD

Anthony Hopkins – THE TWO POPES

Al Pacino – THE IRISHMAN

Joe Pesci – THE IRISHMAN

Brad Pitt – ONCE UPON A TIME…IN HOLLYWOOD

BEST SUPPORTING ACTRESS

Kathy Bates – RICHARD JEWELL

Laura Dern – MARRIAGE STORY

Scarlett Johansson – JOJO RABBIT

Florence Pugh – LITTLE WOMEN

Margot Robbie – BOMBSHELL

This year ushers in a few things that you may be able to use when you play Trivia in a few years.  Should Phoenix win, he would become the second actor, following the late Heath Ledger, to win an Oscar by portraying the Joker.  This achievement has only been done once before, when both Marlon Brando (“The Godfather”) and Robert DeNiro (“The Godfather Part II”) each won Academy Awards for portraying Vito Corleone.  Also, this year marks the first time that a husband and wife were both nominated separately in writing categories.  Noah Baumbach is nominated for his original screenplay for “Marriage Story” while his wife, Greta Gerwig, is nominated for her adaptation of “Little Women.”

For a complete list of nominees, click HERE.

The Academy Awards will be presented on Sunday, February 9th.

Win Passes to the Kansas City Screening of “Dolittle”

WE’VE GOT YOUR CHANCE TO WIN TICKETS TO SEE

“DOLITTLE!”

SATURDAY, JANUARY 11

10:00 A.M.

FOR YOUR CHANCE TO WIN A PAIR A TICKETS TO THE FILM, CLICK HERE

NO PURCHASE NECESSARY. 

DOLITTLE has been rated PG (Parental Guidance Suggested – Some Material May Not Be Suitable for Children) for some action, rude humor and brief language.