Weekly Round Up: Benicio Del Toro, IMDb, Bird Box

Bird Box

Okay, no joke but the live-action Dora the Explorer reboot is quickly becoming my most anticipated movie of next year. Not because it sounds any good, and not even because I’m looking forward to it all that much – in fact I’m not, and I’m definitely not a fan of the show… promise – but because the entire concept just seems so insanely bat-shit crazy that I’m still struggling to wrap my head around the fact that this isn’t even actually a joke.

This is happening, a Dora the Explorer movie is real. I still need to time to process it.

And, as if the mere thought of it existing wasn’t confusingly stupendous and brilliant enough, news hit this week that none other than Academy Award winner Benicio Del Toro has joined the cast. Apparently he’ll be voicing Swiper the Fox, because of course he is, why wouldn’t he?

In other ridiculous news James Wan’s entry into the tragic DCEU, Aquaman, is currently holding tight to the number 1 spot in the global box office. I’m not sure if this suggests the movie is actually really good than the rest of the options are really bad, but here we are. Truly this is the darkest timeline.

The film, about a man-fish-man, stars everyone’s favourite Dothraki Jason Momoa on his quest to be recognised as anything other than Kahl Drogo… a quest that so far has led him to roles similar to Drogo in one way or another, through appearance, attitude, genre or whatnot. Maybe he needs to grab a starring role in Equus and strip naked on stage… anyone get that reference?

A movie I actually enjoyed appears to be getting decent numbers as well, albeit not at the cinema. The Netflix released thriller Bird Box, starring Sandra Bullok and John Malkovitch, was reportedly watched by an incredible 45 million member accounts in the first week of streaming

Whether or not that means 45 million people would have gone to see it at the cinema is debatable (and truth be told they probably wouldn’t have, sadly films like Bird Box don’t tend to do well upon cinema release anymore, probably because tickets are so bloody expensive), but the fact that Netflix have a viewership reaching that far is really impressive and just goes to show how far the streaming service has become since its humble beginnings.

Cinema is changing, whether you see that as good or bad, the simple fact is that with the rise of streaming services like Netflix, Amazon Prime etc., things are going to be very different from now on, and our concepts of what marks a successful film may need to be altered to accommodate films like Bird Box.

Okay, so anyway, I’d like to round-off this last round-up of 2018 with a look forward to the movies we’ll be seeing over the next year.

IMDB ran a survey to see what movies were the most anticipated in 2019, and it should be of little to surprise to anyone that coming out in the top spot was Avengers: Endgame. The culmination of the last ten years of the Marvel’s grandiose cinematic experiment, Endgame marks a genuine moment in cinematic history. Speaking as someone who is officially fed up with Marvel and their ever-changing continuity (seriously, they rarely stick to a set-up, do they) I can honestly say Endgame is probably my most anticipated movie too.

Yes, I know it’s hypocritical of me, and yes, I know I claimed Dora the Explorer was at the start of this round-up, but that was a lie, okay, and this isn’t. Deal with it.

Anyway, what may surprise you to discover is the fact that Star Wars Episode IX, the grand finale to Disney’s new Star Wars trilogy, doesn’t actually appear on the list at all. While on a similar poll run by ticketing service Fandango it appears in the number three spot. What does this mean for the future of Star Wars at Disney? Truthfully probably not an awful lot, as Disney continue their insidious world take over, I don’t think they care much what online surveys have to say.

Tarantino’s Once Upon A Time In Hollywood made the top four on IMDB, while Scorsese’s Netflix movie The Irishman, which seems him reunite with Robert De Niro for the first time in years, came in a number five, thus given me slight hope that humanity is entirely doomed to fall into the hellish mediocre landscape of boring blockbuster after boring blockbuster as we enter into the new year.

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Alex Secker is a writer/director/editor. His debut feature film, the micro-budget thriller Follow the Crows, won Best Independent Film at the Global Film Festival Awards, while his stage-play, The Door, won the People’s Choice Award at the 2017 Swinge Festival.


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