April 19, 2014

Hollywood Movie Roundup: Total ‘Eclipse’ of ‘The Last Airbender’

Hollywoodnews.com:

THE TWILIGHT SAGA: ECLIPSE

Summit Entertainment’s “The Twilight Saga: Eclipse” is the number one film at the Independence Day weekend box office already collecting close to $93 million since bowing Wednesday.

Film is looking to beat Sony’s 2004 sequel “Spider-Man 2” as the highest Independence Day weekend opening. That film grossed over $180 million in six days, benefiting from the July 4th holiday falling on a Sunday and buying another day at the box office.

“Eclipse,” the third chapter in Stephenie Meyer’s romantic vampire-werewolf saga ups the triangle tension between human Bella (Kristen Stewart), vampire Edward (Robert Pattinson) and werewolf Jacob (Taylor Lautner). However, a rogue vampire, Victoria, is leading a horde of fresh bloodsuckers against Edward’s family, the Cullens, with her eye on taking Bella out. Who do the Cullens need in such time of crisis? Why Jacob and the werewolves and it’s up to Edward and Jacob to be friends.

Rotten Tomatoes scored the film at 52% rotten, but many top-notch critics see it as the best in the series with Richard Roeper yipping, “The first two movies were mediocre, but ‘Eclipse’ represents one of the more astonishing upgrades in movie franchise history.”

THE LAST AIRBENDER

Taking a rest from his thrillers with surprise endings, M. Night Shyamalan took a stab at brining a Nickelodeon franchise to the bigscreen, “The Last Airbender” based on the 2005 animated series. To date at the box office, the Paramount film is doing fine, grossing $16.3 million, but the film really needs to do well if it’s going to best its $280 budget and marketing cost.

“Airbender” follows a monk like boy (Noah Ringer) who can bring balance to the warring tribes of Earth, Air, Water and Fire; Fire being the bad guys. The movie is bogged down with trite kiddie dialogue and goes to great lengths to explain its mythology – but there are some kick-ass martial art scenes and the 3D does complement the action (certain powerful people in each tribe know how to manipulate and fight with their element – and that looks cool). “Slumdog Millionarie’s” Dev Patel stars as well as Nicola Peltz.

Most critics loathe the film, but most family fare is repellent to such harsh curses from the pen.

Rotten Tomatoes tracks the film at 9% rotten with Ty Burr of the Boston Globe yelling, “’The Last Airbender’ is dreadful, an incomprehensible fantasy-action epic that makes the 2007 film ‘The Golden Compass,’ a similarly botched adaptation of a beloved property from another medium, look like a four-star classic.”

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