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Bye Netflix

By Paul Anthony

Who doesn’t have Netflix these days, right? I know I love Netflix, their online content may be small compared to their DVD collection, now many have noticed that there are more Disney owned films showed up on Netflix. I remember when I saw Captain America: Civil War on there, little did I know, 2016 was the first year Disney and Netflix began an awesome partnership. However, we all know that all good things must end and sure enough this partnership might be ending as fast as it begun because last week Disney dropped a Bombshell and they announced they are pulling their films at the end of 2019.

When they announced that which was only the beginning, they announced from that point on that they would have their own streaming service, of course it comes with a monthly fee just like Netflix has. Now at this point we are to believe it’s just their movies but then it was reported that Netflix was trying to keep the Disney owned shows, now at this point we don’t know what will happen to the marvel Netflix shows, I assume those are safe since Netflix help co-produce them and has been a big hit for both parties.

If the shows go to this will be a big blow to Netflix, if you just think about all that Disney owns, the classic movies, the new movies, the hits from Pixar and Marvel and even Star Wars are just few things Disney owns and makes billions from. This could be the start of more film studios doing the same and that would pretty doom Netflix the same way they doomed video stores.

If Netflix manages to keeps Disney owned shows, the hit wouldn’t be such a death blow, for now that is. This partnership was short lived one, total of three years to be an exact.

I doubt there is anything Netflix can say or to do to bargain with Disney because they hold all the chips, they know that with starting their streaming service people will buy into and that is a fact, Netflix has nothing to change Disney’s mind about doing this.

We still have a few more years left to see all our favorite movies and T.V shows. Pricing has yet to be determined but my best guess is it will be around 9.99 for the basic package and more for the better plans, so for now enjoy your Disney stuff that is on Netflix.

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Star Wars Movie Debate

By Paul Anthony

Last week Disney announced a new Star Wars film and much to my disappointment it wasn’t the film I was expecting. They announced Obi-Wan Kenobi story, yes let’s watch a movie about a jedi whose greatest battle and victory came when he defeated a young Darth Vader and basically put him in his black suit that he is now famous for.

Now it may seem like I am hating on this famous character but the truth is I am not, I adore the character but the truth is the character’s story ends basically after his battle with Darth Vader and he basically does nothing until the events of New Hope takes place, so why give him a full movie? I was asking myself that question and sure he’s a popular character but there are more popular characters that have better stories to tell, just look no further then Darth Vader himself.

Vader, not Anakin story begins with the lost to Obi-Wan, a good movie would be seeing how he had to learn to rebuild himself and he’s fighting and lightsaber styles and his missions that he was sent on. I do believe we will get this film or films one day, but instead they announced this film.

I can deal with a Han Solo film because we know there are stories to and adventures to go on, we know Han wasn’t a kid in New Hope. Obi-Wan a different case though, he’s adventures basically end once Luke is born.

I am sure they will give him something to do before the film comes out, to justify this film. If the story makes sense, no doubt I will support it, after all I am a big fan of Star Wars, I Just believe a Darth Vader film should come first.

The best part of Rogue One was the scenes where Darth Vader was in them. From him in his healing tank which is where he was at his weakest to him killing those rebels and showing us why people feared him.

We know the rumors are there about there being a Boba Fett film and even a Yoda film. I am okay with a Yoda movie but not a Boba fett film, he had what like twenty minutes of total screen time in all the films. I get it we all want spin-offs but the truth is not every character needs or deserves one, this does go for Obi-Wan.

I know this won’t change Disney’s mind, they are going to keep making films with all the properties they own. At this point we really don’t know much about this film except that it is coming, this film could be years away, we will just have to wait and see.

The Defender’s Review  

By: Justin Hopkins 

 The time has finally come.  How great the shows were and all the hype.  The Defenders  have officially debuted on Netflix. Uniting the team of Daredevil, Jessica Jones, Luke Cage, and Iron Fist to save New York. Facing a bit of pressure after some mixed reviews from season 1 of Iron Fist,  but with almost no surprise, The Defenders was absolutely worth the wait. Blowing away all of my expectations, and creating an epic team up show. 

 The story came together in the absolute best way.  Show each character where their shows left off. Matt Murdoch trying to create a new normal life after he revealed his secret to Karen,  but having trouble putting it out of mind.  Torn apart by the loss of Electra. Jessica Jones struggling to get past her encounter with Kilgrave. Luke returning home from prison,  and wondering what he’ll do next. Danny and Colleen serching the world for The Hand, and his guilt for failing Ku Long. What they really did right,  was have all four stories naturally collide together. Not rush or have it feel forced.  All of them staying true to who they are the entire time.  Each of them having their own goals,  on top of a coming together story. Their chemistry was apparent.  Seeing the friendship forming between Danny and Cage. The hints of romance that Cage and Jessica have in the comics and anytime Jessica and Murdoch were together was guaranteed entertainment. 

 Krysten Ritter showed why she is the gold standard in the Netflix universe.  Jessica Jones steals almost every scene she is in, her smart mouthed, powerhouse ways,  may seem out matched at times,  but always brings it, displays a reluctant,  larger then persona, but Charlie Cox and Mike Colter keep pace right with her. While Fin Jones got an unfair shake in his first go around as the Immortal Iron Fist. He did a splendid job,  showing his growth throughout,  and after the seismic finale,  has a big future ahead as the Cities newest Hero. 

 The villain side of the card was stacked, as it should be for a show of this caliber.  Sigourney Weaver was every bit the bona fide star she is, played Alexandria,  the leader of The Hand. Elodie Yung played a riveting and emotional reborn Electra,  now The Hand’s weapon,  know as the Black Sky, especially since she has to pull off emotional turmoil,  with no dialogue. The real winner was Wing Ching Ho playing Madame Gao. Her third around as the powerful member of The Hand. Improving each time she’s played the roll. Her presence alone puts all the spotlight on her. Great communicator and having you wonder what she has planned at all times.  Can’t say enough good things about her performance. 

 By the end,  they not only tell a great Defenders story,  but 4 separate stories on top of it. Ending with plenty of growth for all their heroes, and future is  looking bright. 

The Movie Pass controversy 

By: Justin Hopkins 

 In 2011, a subscription service known as Movie Pass debuted, with the CEO Mitch Lowe. For packages ranging up to fifty dollars,  they send a subscriber a MasterCard,  and using their smartphone can go to any 2D movie, one time a day.  Six years later,  they made a massive move to increase numbers by offering their service’s for $9.95 a month.  A move that has drawn the wrath of the largest movie theater chain, AMC. Their reasons go from bad for movie business, hurting traffic, and has even talked down on movie passes business plan. Going as far as seeking legal way to ban Movie passes from working in their chains. None of which are close to an actuality.

 For starters, movie pass works with MasterCard. They’d end up having to ban MasterCard users,  which would cost them way more then just allowing the service.

 Movie pass isn’t going to be for everyone.  Since they only work on 2D movies. People who want to see the major hits and blockbusters in 3d or IMAX, will still pay to see them that way. Even card users will still play for IMAX movies like, Marvel and DC, and kids will want to see their movies in 3D.

 Die hard movie buffs will look at this like a god send. Instead of being picky about which movies to see or skip we’ll go more.  Instead of 2 movies,  can become 4 or more. Each time, we’ll spend more money at the concession stand, where theaters make most of their money,   because we saved for the price of the ticket,and the casual fans who but into it. Will go more as well, like in January where for traffic is dead at the movies.

 With more and more complaints over foot traffic at theaters dropping. Movie pass is giving die hard and the casual fans a real break here.  Since the price of a movie ticket can range up to fifteen dollars or more in some areas. It could be a huge boost to it,  even if some don’t want to see it that way.  

Hayes gets the ax!

By Paul Anthony

CBS seems to have hit after hit when it comes to their T.V. shows and this past year they once again had a hit show in Kevin Can Wait which stars Kevin James as Kevin Gable, who after twenty years on the police force retires to see his family more. Now his wife which Erinn Hayes plays as Donna Gable, the show a hit but as crazy as it sounds Hayes will no longer be a part of the show when it returns in the fall for their second full season, and it has nothing to do with Hayes wanting to leave but more with Kevin former T.V. wife from King of Queens Leah Remini who played Carrie.

During the two-part season finale, Remini guest starred as Kevin former partner of sorts the audience loved the magic that they brought, revealing after so many years, they still had chemistry on screen. Sure, we loved the reunion and so did the studio executives, in fact they loved it so much that they decided for season two, that she would become a full-time cast member, sweet, right? Sure, but it came with a cost, a cost that doesn’t make sense. For Remini to become full-time, Erinn Hayes must go.

Hayes character will be killed off, which will happen off screen during the season breaks, which means she doesn’t even get a farewell episode, nope she is gone. Now we don’t know if Kevin falls in love with Remini character or anything like that. At this point, all we really know is that she is a full-time cast member. When I heard the news, I had to wonder how much screen time is Remini really getting to the point where someone else had to leave? Not to mention this a big Gamble on CBS part to jump the gun so fast.

They did this without thinking about a few things, for starters, how will the audience react? Sure, they loved it but they also waited many years to see this happen and it finally did, but what worked many years ago may not work again. I am curious to see the ratings after many of realize we are just now watching The King of Queens all over again.

As I mention before, this makes no sense, great you have her but did you really need to cut ties with Erinn Hayes to do so? The show returns in late September, from that point we will see what they plan on doing with these characters.

 

Studios vs Directors

By: Justin Hopkins 

 Making a movie is tough business. Finding a director who can work on scripts, perfect cast selection,  places to film,  make up stunts, CGI, music, editing and so much more to make sure they are on time and on budget. Then you got on a set and making sure that things runs smooth. Would think that they would get more help from the studio, but as it seems. Alot of movies that seem to be sure fire successes. End up being due to constant arguments between studio and director.  With the studos going as far as cutting away allot of the movie that would have made it better or gave it a better shot in the least.  With the internet connecting us more and more.  These disputes are often enough to scare an audience away before the movie even debuts. 

 The 2015 Fantastic Four comes to mind pretty quickly. Went big on the return of Marvels First Family, and having found financial success behind two subpar ones. Hard not seeing this one doing so as well, but weeks before it was due out.  The finger pointing had begun.  Josh Tran accusing them of gutting his work and making life dismal behind the scenes. Never know how things could have turned out if they’d left him alone to make his movie,  but safe to assume it would have been better then what we got. 

 Even when they do manage to get lucky,  can’t be considered a good thing.  Suicide Squad managed to pull in a lot of money, but is easily one of the most divisive. It was rushed from the start,  heavily edited, script was heavily alerted. At one point,  there was multiple versions competed. Suicide Squad should have been so much better, and was gutted by studio involvement. 

 On the flip side, there are times that studio involvement does work. People panicked over them getting involved with Rogue One,  but ended up being loved by fans. Sometimes there is a grander plan behind it all. Such as the problems between Edgar Wright and Marvel. Yet if the studio wants it done a certain way; why not make it known up front. To avoid these issues and find someone who shares the same vision. 

 The Director is going to be the one who catches heat when a movie goes wrong. When a studio hires them, they are saying they trust them to treat the movie the way it needs to be done. Instead of forcing them change their vision or editing their work to nothing.  Let them make the movie they hired them to do.

 

The Dark Tower review

By: Justin Hopkins 

 Steven King is viewed as one of the best authors of all time.  His books have been adapted to celebrated movies for over thirty years. Which is a surprise that it took till now to see one of his best creations come to the movies; that being The Dark Tower. Eight stories that tells of a Gunslinger, Roland, chasing down the man in black AKA Walter. The Dark Tower being the center of the entire universe. Webbing together old school western,  fantasy,  and adventure that has screamed out to be made into a film.  That finally debuted on Friday, staring Idris Elba as The Gunslinger, Matthew McConaughey taking on The man in black,  and youngster Thomas Taylor playing Jake Chambers. These three being the only good part of a movie that was a shell of what could have been.

 Instead of going for a straight adaption of the stories.  They chose to go with a sequel. That made somewhat sense. Last book ending right where it began,  but this time Ronald has the Horn of Eld. Meaning this time around would be different.  A fact that would be lost on those who didn’t read the book,  but for those who did read it. May be disappointed by too much being changed. Instead of going for a unique story.  They went with clich tropes we’ve seen numerous times over dressed in The Dark Tower. Making everything feeling shallow.

 They made a great casting decisions. Idris Elba was fantastic as Roland.  Tired and rundown after years of defending the Tower. All he longed for was vengeance,  and cared about little less. Matthew McConaughey was terrifyingly compelling as The Man in Black. He was smooth and pure evil. Sole purpose to tear down the Tower made you long for the confrontation between him and the Gunslinger. The chemistry between him and Idris made their scenes pop. Even Thomas Taylor put in a great performance, as Jake Chambers. Being the glue that brought the story together.  They made this movie fun to watch and better then what it was.

 This movie didn’t feel like the start of a franchise or the start of anything good. Felt like a movie the studio threw together to bank off name value alone.  Cared little about the story they were trying to tell. Whether because of fear of something new,  or not wanting to interfere with the TV Series in the works, or just another Steven King book being twisted and contorted for the movie, which is far from the first time. The movie is just a shell of what could have been.  

 Personally, would suggest watching it on DVD or on demand cause the cast was excellent. Put their A Games in, but in my opinion, walked out feeling like this movie missed the mark, of what Dark Tower should have been. 

Bartman, gets his ring!

By Paul Anthony

On October 14th,2003 an event occurred that changed the lives of so many people, sure this wasn’t a world changing event but it was an event nonetheless, I am talking about the Steve Bartman foul ball incident. Now in case you don’t know the story or even forgot I’ll remind you. The Chicago Cubs were playing against the Florida Marlins in game six of the National League championship series, the Cubs had a 3-2 series advantage and were leading in the game 3-0, Luis Castillo of the Marlins hit a foul ball which appeared to be a catch able ball for Moises Alou who was running towards it on the third base side of the field, the ball from replay appeared to be slightly in crowd, some fans moved realizing this ball could be caught, others though still went for it and of those fans the made contact with one hand, the hand of Steve Bartman, whose hand slightly disrupted the ball path and ruining Alou chance at catching it, Bartman did what any fan would do in that moment, no doubt it was a simply mistake. Bartman was a lifelong Cub fan and to this day he still is.

The Cubs would have had a second out in that inning but after that, the floodgates open and would give up 8 runs and lose the game 8-3. The loss forced a game seven which they lost also and Marlins would end up heading to the World Series and winning it.

Bartman, was safe for a short time since there were no jumbotrons at Wrigley field at the time no one knew what exactly happen, but Fox couldn’t let it go, which many people at home saw and began calling their friends and family at the game, the word spread quickly and people began to point at him and throwing stuff at him and chanting at him forcing security to get him out of there for his own safety, at one point the threats were so bad many thought he would go into witness protection because of this.

Bartman will disappear from the public turning down endorsements and everything that would have made him a very rich guy, but his love and loyalty and heart break for what happen, he didn’t take a single dime. The funny thing is Alou would later come out and say he didn’t thing he could catch that ball though he would later say he doesn’t remember saying that.

As we know the Cubs would win it all in 2016, with fans even trying to get Bartman to throw the first pitch in one of those games. But in good spirit the Cubs did something special, they gave him his own championship ring to show good faith and settle this for good. Though Bartman didn’t he was worthy of it he felt honored to receive it and it will be something he will cherish forever. Maybe one day Bartman will return to Wrigley but we will just have to wait and see.

I am glad this is over to be honest, I thought the fans blew this out of the water, to want to cause harm to someone because of a game is just down right sad, but I am glad they are over it.

 

Five Batman villains who should be in the new trilogy

By: Justin Hopkins 

 I’m tired of the Joker. There I said it. He’s over used and played out. Seen him shine in the dark knight, rebooted for Suicide Squad,  and will more then likely carry on into the Harley spin-off. Meaning he should not be apart of The Batman Trilogy. Take nothing away from the Joker. He’s Batman’s arch villain, but Batman has the best list of villains, in the entire D.C. Universe. To continue to use him is redundant, and growing stale. In my opinion, these five would be perfect to appear in the trilogy. 

 Note: since Deathstroke has already been cast. I’m excluding him from the list, since at this moment. Appears he is going to be a part of them.

 THE RIDDLER 

Intellectual Mastermind,  Edward Nigma, is long due for his return to the silver screen.  Especially, since many hoped he would have returned in Dark Knight Rises. His genius level at times capable of surpassing even Batmans. His involvement would allow them to build off the Detective moments shown in Batman vs Superman. Creating a thrilling mystery that would engage the audience into trying to solve the Riddles. If they dont want him to be a full blown villain. Can include him as the Private Investigator Batman can turn to for help.

 POISON IVY  

 When a movie can draw on real life, it tends to make for that much more better of a story.  With people wanting to see more female involvement, and Global Warming being as prevalent as ever; almost surprising that Pamela Isley hasn’t been brought up sooner. Around fifty one years, alot of her stories, protraies her as a villain, because of her actions, but her motivations makes her come across as almost an anti hero in away.  Fighting to protect the earth, or fiercely defending orphans in another. It allows the viewers to almost get behind her in ways other villains can’t.  The emotional roller coaster they can tell could make for a great Batman film. With her already set to appear in Gotham City Sirens. Would be easy to segway her from one to another.

 BLACK MASK

 With Matt Reeves claiming to want to use a method similar to what Nolan used. What better way then to go back to his fight against the mob, and enter Roman Sionis. An under utilized villain, whose uber violence and methodical torture can force Batman to another level, to deal with a dangerous fighter, marksman, and masterful tactician. A movie featuring Black Mask would keep the audience on the edge of their seats till the end. 

 THE RED HOOD

 They almost have to use him.  After the teaser in Batman vs Superman. Seeing Jason Todd’s Robin Costume would be the worst what if moment ever if they didn’t. Honestly,  they should anyways.  The fan base is rabid to see him, the story is fantastic, and made for the big screen.  The return of Jason Todd as a villain arguably struck more of a cord with Bruce then his death. Emotional story and thrilling climax is some of the best story telling, only really behind the next option.

 HUSH

 This could be the trilogy alone. Often held as one of the all time greatest Batman Comic Runs of all time.  Would open the door for every Batman villain, the whole Bat Family, and Superman. The psychological torment that Thomas Elliot inflicts on Bruce Wayne almost screams to be seen in theaters, and blow away everything before it. 

  There are so many others that can be substituted into the list,  and please feel free to comment who you would like to see. Batman has such a vast world.  Why see what we have already seen. When another can step up have their turn for a change. 

 




 

MLB Trade Deadline 

By: Justin Hopkins 

 The trade deadline came to an end today.  While it was a little less dramatic, then I was expecting, had one asked a month ago. Still packed plenty of surprising moves. Five teams sought ought, not only to win their Division Races, but drastically improve their odds of taking home a ring.  Let’s jump right in with the National League East, Washington Nationals.

 Coming into this year,  the National’s were a top favorite to contend, and carrying the second best record in the National League. There biggest weakness being in the bullpen. They weren’t content with picking up the two relievers they had gotten. They added the third best closer in MLB, Brandon Klintzer. Sporting a 2.38 ERA, and 28 saves. This is going to go a long way to build confidence with a lead late in the game now.

 The lack of movement in the National League Central,  was actually really surprising. (particularly my hometown Pirates) Outside of the Cincinnati Reds, four teams are all within 4.5 Games of first. That is except the leader, Chicago Cubs. Having already added Ace Jose  Quintana. In controversial move,  traded two top ten prospects to Detroit, for reliever Justin Wilson and Alex Alivia. It might seem strange, but it was a move they had to make. Having won their first World Series in over a Century.  This team was being herald as a potential Dynasty has had a rocky first half.  They need to be successful this year, to prove to their fans and the media, that last year was not a flash in the pan.

 Onto the National League West, where the Los Angeles Dodgers have been a juggernaut. Unstoppable force putting up 74-31 and they just got better.  Picking up Tony Watson and Tony Cingrani, from the Pirates and Reds. At the final minutes to the Deadline,  picked up Ace Yu Darvish from the Texas Rangers. Who may be a little off this year, 4.01 ERA. Fully expect this move to rejuvenate him, and with the team they now possess. Even their toughest critics will be hard pressed to not say they are World Series favorites. 

 The Houston Astros, have stolen the show on the American League side.  Not only taking control over their Division, but the league itself.  They are young and versatile.  Proven their dominance and resilience time in and time out.  Adding veteran Francisco Liriano is just a smart move. May have lost a step, but has simply stifled lefties at the bag, making him extremely useful in the pen, but his veteran status and playoff experience.  Can be a club house leader for the younger guys to work with. 

 The New York Yankees have been throwing out feelers since the All-star break. Seeking help to fend off the Boston Red Sox. Landing just that,  with Oakland Athletics, Right Hander, Sonny Gray. Adding instant star power pitching to an already talented rotation and powerful hitters.  They may have dealt three players for him, but two of them are injured.  They got him for a steal. Which may not only have won them the division,  but punched their ticket to the big game. 

 Trade Deadline has past. May have been less exciting then what I was thinking it would be. These teams have made drastic moves that may have been the difference between watching from home, to playing in the World Series.