Where Did The Week Go…
Disney can be a little pretentious sometimes. Hey, when you own companies like ABC, ESPN, Pixar, Marvel and now Lucasfilm, you can pretty much do whatever you want. Like Apple, Disney has a tendency to either not put their products on sale (And when they do, it’s only a dollar) or lock them “in the vault” after a while. They’re very precious about their movies and by threatening to take away some of them, demand goes up and you suddenly become more willing to pay full price.
That’s why it was so surprising that on Tuesday, Disney struck a deal with Netflix to stream their titles. Beginning in 2016, films theatrically released from Disney, Pixar and Marvel, both live-action and animated, will stream exclusively on Netflix’s streaming service.
If you’re like me and you feel like 2016 is a long ways away, the two companies also struck a separate multi-year deal that will make catalog Disney titles available on Netflix immediately. Movies like Dumbo, Pocahontas and Alice in Wonderland are available to watch right now. Of course when you type in other titles like The Lion King, Aladdin and Beauty and the Beast, they aren’t available to stream. Hopefully these titles will also be available at some point.
But in the mean time, this is great news for Netflix. It’s been a rough couple of years for the company as they have lost not only subscribers following the price hike in 2011, but also license deals with companies like Starz. Teaming up with a giant like Disney ensures that Netflix not only will become a leader in kid-friendly content, but also ensure that the company will remain one of the leaders in the streaming business.
Netflix Instant Pick: Headhunters
Roger Brown appears to be a stuffy, successful businessman on the surface. He lives in a nice home, has a beautiful wife and seemingly lives a comfortable life. But as he says in the opening of the film to another person, your reputation is everything.
In reality, Brown is struggling to keep the facade of a successful life going. In his spare time he steals expensive art and swaps it out for a fake. Up to this point, he’s been successful at stealing (mostly because he hasn’t been caught), but he’s still buried in a mountain of debt.
Then he meets Clas Greve, a successful businessman himself who just happens to have a piece of art worth millions. After yet another successful heist, Brown believes he’s finally scored the ultimate prize. But like Brown, Greve has a secret of his own that causes Brown to wish he’d never stolen from him.
Headhunters is a Norwegian film and you can tell the filmmakers were influenced by the Coen Brothers. The main character gets in way over his head and before long, he’s involved in a dangerous game that could affect him personally. Like a Coen Brothers film, Headhunters mixes scenes of intense violence with a strange and dark side of humor. In one scene a character gets his head blown off and in another, two characters engage in playful gun battle while in the nude.
The best thing about the film is that it’s constantly unpredictable. Because it has a twisted edge about it, you never quite know Mr. Brown’s motivations. Flawed protagonists are always more fun and Brown certainly fits the bill. He lies, cheats and of course steals, but by the end you still find yourself rooting for him.
The film could have used a little more humor, especially in the second half when things go absolutely crazy, but it’s still entertaining throughout.
‘The Hobbit’ Might Cause Motion Sickness
Movies are becoming more and more interactive these days. With the advent of 3D, IMAX and full high definition picture and sound, movies have never looked or sounded better. The theater experience has become so immersive, it’s hard to imagine what they’ll come up with next. But it sounds like they already have and it might be going a little too far.
The highly anticipated film, The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey, doesn’t come out for another week in the states, but for those who have already seen it, the film might be a little too real.
Films have always been shot at 24 frames per second. But director Peter Jackson felt his new Hobbit movie needed something more so he filmed it at 48 frames per second. The higher the frame rate, the sharper, more real the image.
But now that select audiences and film critics are seeing the film, they’ve complained that certain scenes may cause ‘motion sickness’ during action scenes. Over the summer, footage of the film was shown at CinemaCon and the response then was that the 48fps made it feel like you where on set with the actors as opposed to sitting in your seat marveling at everything on the screen.
Now that the entire film is done, the 48fps might be a little too immersive for some. Warner Bros. released a statement on Wednesday saying that none of the thousands who have seen the film projected in the new format expressed any issues.
The film is reportedly available in the traditional viewing format of 24 frames per second too so any viewers worried about leaving the theater sick can still choose the format they’ve grown accustomed to seeing.
I’m all for innovative technology when it comes to movies (Digital VS. Film, IMAX, 3D), but as much as I want to feel immersed in the experience, I don’t want to get to a point where I’m uncomfortable. I can recall a few times where I’ve had a headache after seeing a movie on the big screen (every Michael Bay movie), but if it goes beyond that, then we might want to slow down a little bit with the immersion and focus more on just telling a great story.
My experience going to a theater should in no way feel similar to flying in an airplane. Let’s hope we don’t get to a point where every theater is not only passing out 3D glasses, but also vomit bags.