The Filmlosophers, Eddie Villanueva and Chad Riley, dabble in a bit of spycraft with this week’s overview of the thrilling genre of spy movies. From some of Hitchcock’s greatest works to prominent franchises featuring marquee characters like James Bond, Jason Bourne and even Dom Torreto, we’re taking a look at the compelling and secretive world of espionage on film.
In movie news, we celebrate Warners making it official by signing Wonder Woman director Patty Jenkins to a record setting contract for the sequel.
The Filmlosophers, Eddie Villanueva and Chad Riley, face their fears with a review of It (2017), a new adaptation of Stephen King’s killer clown novel. Coming on the heels of the lackluster adaptation of another Stephen King novel, The Dark Tower (2017), does this outing prove to be more engaging? Also, how does it compare to the 1990 television mini-series starring Tim Curry as Pennywise?
The Filmlosophers discuss the hilarity of vulgarity in The Hitman’s Bodyguard (2017), the bromantic action comedy you’ve heard so much about starring Samuel L. Jackson and Ryan Reynolds. The profanity-laden film follows two highly trained specialists—one an assassin, the other a private bodyguard—trying to overcome an aggressive team of mercenaries and reach the international criminal court at The Hague...and bickering all along the way.
In movie news, we pay tribute to the late Jerry Lewis, who passed away on Sunday at the age of 91 after a storied career in Hollywood that spanned more than 70 years.
The Filmlosophers, Eddie Villanueva and Chad Riley, welcome guest commentator Wendy Day for a reflective review of Detroit (2017), directed by Kathryn Bigelow and starring John Boyega, Will Poulter, Algee Smith, Jacob Latimore, Anthony Mackie and many more. The film recounts the horrifying events that transpired at the Algiers Motel in the midst of the summer of 1967, when racial tensions boiled over in America’s fifth largest city and led to violence between citizens and law enforcement officers.
In movie news, we discuss Samuel L. Jackson’s recent comments about whether or not Nick Fury will make an appearance in Avengers: Infinity War (2018).
The Filmlosophers, Eddie Villanueva and Chad Riley, venture into the realm of modern myth-making with their review of the much anticipated film adaptation of Stephen King’s The Dark Tower (2017), starring Idris Elba as Roland Deschain, the Gunslinger, and Matthew McConaughey as Walter O’Dim, the Man in Black. After spending many years stuck in development hell, was the new film from director Nikolaj Arcel worth the wait?
In movie news, we discuss breaking news from Disney Studios about the projected launch of an all-Disney streaming service in 2019.
The Filmlosophers, Eddie Villanueva and Chad Riley, welcome frequent guest and outspoken advocate Laura Sirikul for a timely conversation about the growing influence of women in film, both on and behind the screen. As the number of female-led stories continues to expand and roles open up for women in prominent leadership roles behind the camera, what are some indicators of meaningful progress...and how far does the industry still need to go to break down the “celluloid ceiling” for good?
The Filmlosophers, Eddie Villanueva and Chad Riley, share thoughts on Christopher Nolan’s taut, tense new film, Dunkirk (2017), which interweaves multiple narratives to depict one of World War II’s most intense stories of struggle and triumph. After nearly two hours spent in near-constant suspense, what impact did the tight shots, resonant sounds and epic aerial dogfights have on our delicate psyches?
In movie news, we also reflect on Comic-Con 2017 with feedback on new announcements from Warner Bros./DC, Marvel Studios and more. Panels and trailers from Justice League (2017), Ready Player One (2018), Thor: Ragnarok (2017), Black Panther (2018) and Avengers: Infinity War (2018) were among this year’s hottest topics.
The Filmlosophers, Eddie Villanueva and Chad Riley, head deep into the motion capture wilderness of Matt Reeve’s War for the Planet of the Apes (2017) starring Andy Serkis, Woody Harrelson and Steve Zahn. As the Simian Flu continues to transform the planet, how will that impact the tense interactions between sentient apes and humans who fear being supplanted as the dominant species on the planet?
In movie news, we discuss all of the news and developments from D23 Expo, including footage from Avengers: Infinity War (2018) the live action The Lion King (2019) and the Mary Poppins sequel, casting announcements for the live action Aladdin film (2018), a trailer for A Wrinkle in Time (2018) and behind the scenes footage from Star Wars; The Last Jedi (2017).
The Filmlosophers, Eddie Villanueva and Chad Riley, embrace their darker side with a review of Despicable Me 3 (2017), wherein reformed villain Gru, voiced by Steve Carell, considers going back to his dastardly evil days after parting ways with most of his Minions and meeting his twin brother Dru, also voiced by Steve Carell, for the first time. This third installment marks a turning point for the franchise, but is it for the better or for the worse?
In movie news, we discuss new details from MCU architect Kevin Feige that Zendaya’s character in Spider-man: Homecoming (2017) may not have been exactly who we thought she was.
The Filmlosophers, Eddie Villanueva and Chad Riley, join with Sacramento's best cosplayer, Trenton Brewer, to relive the hormone-infused days of high school with a spoiler-filled recap of Spider-man: Homecoming (2017) starring Tom Holland, Michael Keaton and Robert Downey Jr. With a flurry of nods to the other films of the Marvel Cinematic Universe, this latest take on the friendly neighborhood webslinger brings the humor and heart of Marvel’s “everyman,” Peter Parker, into the fold with a little help from a variety of familiar faces.
The Filmlosophers, Eddie Villanueva and Chad Riley, test drive Edgar Wright’s critical darling, Baby Driver (2017). Starring Ansel Elgort, Kevin Spacey, Lily James, Jon Hamm and Jamie Foxx, the film centers on a young wheelman named Baby as he navigates his roles as criminal, foster son and boyfriend. The inventive film showcases much more than a series of car stunts, with a distinctive soundtrack that proves to be as much a focus as any of the characters involved.
In movie news, we discuss Spider-Man Tom Holland’s confirmation that Peter Parker showed up in the MCU long before Captain America: Civil War (2016).
The Filmlosophers, Eddie Villanueva and Chad Riley, don’t need to dive very deep for this review of Transformers: The Last Knight (2017). Allegedly the final directorial turn for Michael Bay in this franchise, the film stars Mark Wahlberg, Sir Anthony Hopkins and a host of characters that blur together in the latest bit of Bayhem.
In industry news, the team relays news of directorial changes on the Han Solo spinoff film from Disney and Lucasfilm.
The Filmlosophers, Eddie Villanueva and Chad Riley, take a crash course in child prodigy psychology for Colin Trevorrow’s latest project, The Book of Henry (2017). Starring Naomi Watts, Dean Norris, Sarah Silverman and newcomer Jaeden Lieberher, the tale offers a unique take on the mentality and influence of a young genius while asking serious questions about the responsibilities of parents and citizens in a modern society.
In industry news, the team also discusses the recent passing of television icon Adam West, most famously known for playing the lead role on the influential 1960s Batman show.
The Filmlosophers, Eddie Villanueva and Chad Riley, take to the seven seas for six pieces of eight and a shanty song for the Pirates of the Caribbean film saga from Walt Disney Studios and Bruckheimer Films. From The Curse of the Black Pearl (2003) to Dead Men Tell No Tales (2017), the franchise has at turns entertained, disappointed, delighted and confused moviegoers while reinvigorating the career of lead actor Johnny Depp and introducing whole new generations to one of the oldest rides in the Disney theme parks.
The Filmlosophers, Eddie Villanueva and Chad Riley, journey back to the days of World War I for a review of the highly anticipated new DCEU film Wonder Woman (2017) from Patty Jenkins. Starring Gal Gadot, Chris Pine, Robin Wright, Connie Nielsen, David Thewlis and more, the film marks the second appearance - and first solo outing - of the most popular female superhero in comics.
The Filmlosophers, Eddie Villanueva and Chad Riley, head to the stars for a review of Ridley Scott’s newest film, Alien: Covenant (2017). Starring Michael Fassbender in a dual role and new characters played by Katherine Waterston, Danny McBride and Billy Crudup, among others, the latest installment is a successor to Prometheus (2014) - but does it do its job in terms of leading into the original Alien franchise?
In movie news, we discuss Joss Wedon’s new role in overseeing the final Justice League film for its November release date following a personal tragedy in director Zach Snyder’s family.
The Filmlosophers, Eddie Villanueva and Chad Riley, pull sword from stone and rack up some hit points in this week’s review of Guy Ritchie’s mythbusting King Arthur: Legend of the Sword (2017), starring Charlie Hunnam, Jude Law, Djimon Hounsou and Eric Bana. With a new, streetwise take on one of Western literature’s most recognizable figures, and a series of sequences that seem plucked straight out of a video game, how does the modernized Arthurian tale compare to the more faithful interpretations of the past?
In movie news, the team discusses the latest trailer from War for the Planet of the Apes (2017), due out on July 14th, and the latest trailer from Denis Villenueve’s sci-fi sequel, Blade Runner 2049 (2017), due out in October 6th.
The Filmlosophers, Eddie Villanueva and Chad Riley, welcome back Trenton Brewer and Sacramento cosplayer Marquis Sweat-Keaton to turn on the Walkman and get in the groove on all things Guardians of the Galaxy Volume 2 (2017). With five mid- and post-credit scenes and the presence of both Tango and Cash (Sylvester Stallone and Kurt Russell), there’s a lot to love in this sophomore outing from James Gunn, Chris Pratt, Zoe Saldana, Dave Bautista, Bradley Cooper and Vin Diesel - to the tune of more than $400 million worldwide within its first week of release.
The Filmlosophers, Eddie Villanueva and Chad Riley, welcome back frequent guest Hannah Porter to prep for this week’s Marvel Studios release with a fun, feisty review and dissection of Guardians of the Galaxy (2014), the MCU gambit that paid big dividends. With the sequel set to make a Milano-sized haul at the box office this weekend, what were the elements of the first film’s success?
The Filmlosophers, Eddie Villanueva and Chad Riley, play mad scientist and try to dissect the anatomy of a summer blockbuster while also diving deep into the economics of moviemaking in this special edition report. What traits make a film predisposed for box office success, and how has the influence of foreign markets impacted the moviemaking practices of Hollywood executives?
In movie news, we discuss the return of Jeff Goldblum to the Jurassic World franchise, and all the release information put out by Twentieth Century Fox and Disney Studios.
The Filmlosophers, Eddie Villanueva and Chad Riley, blow it up (like the record-setting global box office haul) with this week’s review of The Fate of the Furious (2017), starring Vin Diesel, Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson, Charlize Theron, Tyrese, Ludacris, Jason Statham, Kurt Russell and several others. How did the crew fare without Paul Walker, and what did/didn’t work about Dom Torreto’s double-cross?
In movie news, we discuss the long-awaited reveal of Josh Brolin as Cable in Deadpool 2 (2018).
The Filmlosophers, Eddie Villanueva and Chad Riley, welcome long time fan and movie enthusiast Marcus Hunter and Sacramento’s own cosplay extraordinaire Trenton Brewer for this week’s review of Power Rangers (2017). The film reboots the prolific children’s television show from the 1990s with a new take on Jason, Billy, Kimberly, Zach and Trini, and how they come to acquire their powers. Featuring Bryan Cranston as Zordon and Elizabeth Banks as Rita Repulsa, the film was directed by Dean Israelite.
The team also discusses the new Thor: Ragnarok trailer, featuring Cate Blanchett as Hela and the makings of a rowdy intergalactic buddy comedy between Chris Hemsworth’s Thor and Mark Ruffalo’s “Planet Hulk” inspired green goliath.
The Filmlosophers, Eddie Villanueva and Chad Riley, welcome back Val Complex and Nerd Reactor’s Laura Sirikul back to the round table for week’s review of Ghost in the Shell (2017), the controversy-laden anime adaptation directed by Rupert Sanders and starring Scarlett Johansson in the role of an Asian woman who has been transformed into a cyborg and is working for a paramilitary arm of the government.
To what extent does the film exemplify the whitewashing of Asian roles in big-budget Hollywood films, and what kind of an effect did the casting decisions have on the film’s reception?
The Filmlosophers, Eddie Villanueva and Chad Riley, head for stars with this week’s review of Life (2017), the creature feature set aboard the international space station and starring Jake Gyllenhaal, Ryan Reynolds and Rebecca Ferguson. Does the film represent an evolution of the sci-fi monster genre, or does it leave you floating in space awaiting something more?
In movie news, we discuss news about the new Spiderman: Homecoming (2017) trailer and a possible end to the Marvel-Sony character collaboration before 2020, as well as the first details of Alicia Vikander’s upcoming Tomb Raider reboot (2018).
The Filmlosophers, Eddie Villanueva and Chad Riley, jump from animation to live action adaptation for this week’s review of Beauty and the Beast (2017), the long-anticipated film starring Emma Watson, Dan Stevens, Luke Evans, Josh Gad and Kevin Kline. With a robust cast of VFX characters voiced by Ewan McGregor, Ian McKellen, Stanley Tucci, Audra McDonald, Emma Thompson and Gugu Mbatha-Raw, the film easily cracked the list of the top 10 highest grossing debuts of all time with a bow of more than $170 million in its first weekend.
In movie news, we discuss a Mission Impossible 6 (2018) stunt for Tom Cruise that has involved more than one year of training and an update on the future of the Terminator movie franchise (Hint: He might not be back).