4 Modern Movies That Were So Good … Until These Scenes

The world is garbage right now, but at least movies are still great. Right? It Comes At Night was heartbreaking and dark, and Power Rangers was cheerful and juvenile. There’s something for everyone! There’s something for both types of people.

Even me, the proverbial third type of person: a guy who likes to ruin things by pointing out how stupid they are. Which is what I’m going to do right now: Ruin a thing you probably enjoyed recently. I’m sorry to do this to you but I have to. It’s the only way I know how to be.


Beauty and the Beast’s Stupid Faces

I hadn’t watched the original Beauty And The Beast since I was a small child but I watched it again recently and, hey, it’s pretty great. I know this isn’t a surprise to our nostalgia-fetishizing culture where everything that we considered good as children is not only great but worth fist-fighting about. But I actually never cared about this particular Disney movie as a kid. I’m not even sure I had ever seen it until I watched it a couple months ago at whatever-age-I-am. But no, seriously, I really enjoyed it: tight script, funny jokes, and great character design. And I’m not referring to how badly I want to fuck that feather duster, I mean the characters are iconic and memorable. I know exactly who Lumiere is just by the way he cocks his eyebrow.

Walt Disney Pictures

In the cartoon, that is. In the live-action remake all those amazing and whimsical characters look more like this:

Walt Disney Pictures

Soulless eyes. Twitching, insectoid mouthparts. Tiny Ewan McGregor face. A photo-realistic talking candelabra is, it turns out, just a bad idea, and not just because of the ensuing nightmares: They just functionally didn’t work. Most of the time I couldn’t tell what expressions they were making, or what they were feeling, or what I was supposed to be feeling about it. At one point, Mrs. Potts gets thrown right up in the screen and winks and I haven’t been able to get the image out of my head for five months. Sometimes I wake up in the middle of the night, convinced Mrs. Potts is hiding somewhere in my apartment, silently twitching her horrific eye at me in the dark, and I can’t sleep until I search my entire home top to bottom. That’s not true, I made it up for dramatic purposes, but I hope it communicates my issue with this character’s horrible face.

Alright. Fine. I admit that this might just be the ravages of old age catching up with me. Maybe when Snow White was released in 1627, grumpy hipsters in their late 20s/early 30s were complaining that animation was a stupid medium that no one would ever enjoy. Maybe the next generation will be fine with these horrifying, uncanny valley-dwelling abortions. Maybe I’ll hate the next generation as much as every generation has ever hated every subsequent generation.


Kurt Russell Did Not Need To Recite The Lyrics Of “Brandy”

After the double-dose of mediocrity that was Dr. Strange and Ant-Man, Guardians Of The Galaxy Vol. 2 and Spider-Man: Homecoming single-handedly restored my faith in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Yes, two things can single-handedly do something. That’s a fine thing for me to say because language is always evolving and nothing means anything.

But the scene where Kurt Russell recites the lyrics to “Brandy” on screen was garbage.

The role the scene plays in the movie is pretty straight forward. Russell plays Ego, a living planet and “god with a lower-case ‘g'” that is also Peter Quill’s father, okay, maybe it’s not super straightforward. He’s explaining that he thinks of Quill’s mother as being like the Brandy in the song. This is foreshadowing that he (spoiler!) is an evil character, because “Brandy” is a sad story about a bartender who gets neglected by a sailor who leaves her a gift but never returns. If Ego sees Quill’s mother as Brandy, then he must be the sailor, and therefore he’s kind of a jerk without realizing it. That’s a neat bit of foreshadowing… until Ego just says the lyrics of the song to the camera. In case anyone missed it.

This drives me crazy because cleverly hidden foreshadowing is one of my favorite things movies do. Edgar Wright and Simon Pegg are the masters of this stuff because you can watch Shaun Of The Dead and Hot Fuzz, not pick up on a single case of the foreshadowing, and still really enjoy the movie. It’s extra. It’s subtle. Having RJ MaCready deadpan the thesis of the scene isn’t either of those things.

Is it dumb of me to expect subtlety from a movie with a talking raccoon and sentient kill-tree? Maybe, but fuck you, I like my dumb things smart. Guardians is perfect in every other way and this would’ve been a fantastic easter egg instead of the hardest I’ve cringed in a movie theater all year. Even my mom didn’t like the scene, and my mom likes everything. My mom thinks I’m a snob for not wanting to watch Lost In Space (I am a snob, but not because of my Lost In Space opinions).


John Wick: Chapter 2 Makes John Wick Pretty Dumb

Oh my, what to say about the John Wick series? It’s one of the rare action movies that remembers to show us the action. It’s one of the rare movies with an outrageous premise that is still confident enough to not wink at the audience about how silly it is. And it’s the only movie where, like, I keep submitting it to Cracked editorial as my monthly column, and in response John Cheese is just like “No, Sarge, this is not a column, this is just a pirated MP4 of John Wick 2. Stop doing that. Please just write your column and also if you love this movie so much buy it for real.” And then I say “I did buy it for real, 15 times, but I can’t email you my Blu-ray” and he says “Well why not buy it on iTunes or something and send me that” and then I say “Because you wouldn’t be able to watch it because of DRM” and then he says “How do you always manage to suck me into these conversations?” I like these movies a lot.

Aside from that part in John Wick: Chapter 2 where we reveal that Wick has been a huge dumbass this entire time. I can’t find it on YouTube anywhere so I’ll just transcribe the scene:

Winston: What are you doing, Jonathan?

Wick (dumbly): He burned my house down.

Winston: You rejected his marker. You’re lucky he stopped there. What the hell were you thinking, giving a marker to a man like Santino D’Antonio?

Wick (incredulously): It’s the only way I could get out.

Winston: Oh, you call this out? What did you think would happen? What did you expect? Did you really think this day would never come? What does he want you to do?

Wick (stupidly): I didn’t ask. I just said “no.”

Winston (shaking head): Two rules that cannot be broken, Jonathan. No blood can be spilled at the Continental, and every marker must be honored.

Wick (confused): I have no choice?

That’s mostly secret-assassin gibberish but it still should be pretty clear what’s going on here: There are only two rules in this society, and John Wick broke one. The idea that there are only two rules in this society (along with the fact that apparently everything costs exactly one gold coin) stretches my disbelief, but I can accept it. I can even accept that professional assassin work comes to you in an app like Uber (another plot point). But the idea that these two rules are too much for Wick to remember? The guy who’s an expert in every gun, every form of hand-to-hand combat, who can speak Italian and Russian and remembers the favorite drink of an old colleague (Common, we learn, drinks gin) can’t remember that you have to honor blood contracts?

Summit Entertainment
“Which one of these drinks is mine again?”

In fact, he seems to be struggling with basic cognitive function the entire movie. Like 90 percent of his lines are incredulous questions asking more articulate characters to explain the situation he’s found himself in. I’ve actually come up with a fan theory that John Wick is just a really really stupid man who scrapes through life purely based on his ability to murder. But that makes the movie less interesting so I don’t think about it very often.


Wonder Woman Has The Worst Sailing Scene Of Any Movie

Apparently DC movies can be good, which was absolutely shocking to me even though it happened as recently as 2008 (I have a very short memory). And though much ado has been made about the fact that it’s the first female-led superhero movie, it was also just a good adventure movie where a woman kills people with her whip. I haven’t seen someone get killed with a whip since, oh, before you were born.

Which is a shame because that sailing scene, man — it was pretty bad.

I’m quickly developing a reputation for being the Cracked Sailing guy, which is fine because it’s good for my career to have a brand. So go ahead and call me that. I don’t get a lot of opportunities to talk about sailing because most movies don’t include any sailing and when they do there’s not that much to say. “The boat would be moving more than that,” I might mutter to my date, but only if I want to make sure I don’t get another date. “That’s not really how the water would look from the shore of a Caribbean island” are some words that have actually come out of my mouth. I can be picky about anything, but listen: Wonder Woman got things exceptionally wrong. The scene where Steve Trevor and Wonder Woman sail from Themyscira to London is, bar none, the worst sailing I’ve ever seen in a movie. They literally don’t get a single detail right.

First, there’s no indication of how the sails are trimmed. They’re just hanging there, like Chris Pine and Gal Gadot’s hair, indicating that there is no wind. Sailboats need wind to move, and you adjust the sail depending on what direction the wind is coming from. The wind’s pressure on the sail, as well as the daggerboard, centerboard or keel’s pressure against the water, guides the boat in the direction it needs to go. If the sail is limp, the boat can’t be moving.

Let’s pretend this is forgivable (even though it’s fucking not). I get that most people won’t notice, and if we had simulated rough seas and high winds they probably wouldn’t have been able to improvise the funniest scene in the movie. Maybe Amazonian boats are made out of bullshit fucking magic or whatever. I wouldn’t have even mentioned this if things hadn’t gotten ten times crazier the next second when both characters go to sleep.

Who’s making sure they stay on course? What if they get run down by some steam ship? They don’t even have running lights, for Christ’s sake. Not even a candle stuck in the spreaders. Normally, on overnight passages, you want at least one person awake at all times “on watch.” And since this is a one-night journey, there’s zero reason for both characters to be asleep at the same time. I can’t stress enough how little sense this makes. It’s more implausible than anything else in the movie, including the lasso of truth or the idea that anyone could find David Thewlis intimidating.

To me, anyway. I totally understand why nobody else cares.

JF Sargent is a Senior Editor and columnist for Cracked and needlessly iconoclastic about all kinds of stuff. You can follow him on Twitter and Facebook.

Read more: http://www.cracked.com/blog/4-infuriatingly-bad-scenes-in-recent-great-movies/


Thats probably Superman at the end of that Justice League Comic-Con trailer, right?

The Justice League Comic-Con trailer makes a big deal out of uniting the DC superheroes. But it doesn’t take a Batman-level intellect to figure out that one’s still missing.

Superman’s nowhere to be seen in the latest Justice League footage reel and since Henry Cavill was also MIA at the Warner Bros. Hall H panel, no one got a chance to ask him about it. But that latest trailer may have given us a little clue as to how the Man of Steel will figure into all of this.

At the very end of the video, Jeremy Irons’ Alfred addresses an unseen figure. “He said you’d come. Now let’s hope you’re not too late.” That line is prefaced by Alfred noticing that his whiskey glass is starting to shake, Jurassic Park-style. Whoever or whatever it is, it’s creating a lot of commotion.

Kind of like what happened to the dirt over Clark Kent’s grave.

In theory, this unseen figure could be just about anyone. But in context … it’s gotta be Superman, right?

During the panel, Jason Momoa played dumb when a young fan asked about Superman’s whereabouts. “I’m not sure if you’re parents showed you the last movie, but Superman’s dead,” he responded.

However, the cast and crew have generally been very clear that Superman will return in some form or fashion, despite his untimely demise at the end of Batman v Superman. Heck, Momoa’s comment was followed by Gal Gadot reassuring the kid that Superman fans would be “very happy” to see how he factors in.

So now we know that Alfred, somehow, becomes the one to greet him when he returns. Which raises more questions than it really answers how did “he” (presumably Batman) know Supes would return? Is Superman too late? Does Martha know about all of this? What about the other Martha?

But it feels like a promise for fans of the Man of Steel. Just be patient, guys. The red cape is coming.

Justice League is in theaters November 17.

Read more: http://mashable.com/2017/07/22/justice-league-comic-con-trailer-superman/


Marvel is bringing its superheroes to VR with a new Oculus-exclusive game

The Incredible Hulk and some of his other box office money-grabbing super pals will be coming to the world of virtual reality.

Marvel Powers United VR, announced at Disneys D23 event on Saturday, will allow players a chance to step into the shoes of some familiar heroes as they destroy lots of stuff in VR.

Powers United VR, an Oculus-exclusive,looks pretty similar to existing VR wave shooters like Robo Recall, though its multiplayer could spice things up a bit. The main highlight will obviously be having IP from Marvel; players will be able to choose from 12 different Marvel characters as they exact righteous mayhem.

The title is being developed by Sanzaru Games, which has already done a couple VR titles for the Rift, including VR Sports Challenge and Ripcoil.

Facebook and Oculus have devoted $500 million to funding made-for-VR content. Oculus has been doing so largely with the hopes of attracting exclusives and interest from top AAA game publishers who have been reticent to invest significant cash into a space with so few users relative to console and PC audiences.

With Marvel, Oculus has found a partnership that allows it another big name exclusive to show off its highest-end Rift and Touch controller hardware, which it has heavily discounted in recent months as Facebook looks to sell units and keep up with competition in the niche VR space.

Building a hefty library of exclusives is even more important to the company following E3, where Oculus was largely overlooked as the highly influential ZeniMax-owned Bethesda announced a number of titles from blockbuster series, including DOOM, Fallout and The Elder Scrolls, that it will be porting to competing virtual reality systems like HTCs Vive and Sonys Playstation VR. This comes as Facebook fights an injunction from the Oculus/ZeniMax lawsuit, for which it has already been ordered to pay up a half-billion dollars.

Marvel Powers United VR is bring slated for a 2018 release.

Read more: https://techcrunch.com/2017/07/16/marvel-is-bringing-its-superheroes-to-vr-with-a-new-oculus-exclusive-game/


Spider-Man: Homecoming and the Problem With Marvels Movie Formula

Spider-Man: Homecoming is the breezy tween-oriented Marvel movie promised by its numerous trailers, commercials, posters and other assorted PR campaign spots. Its star, Tom Hollandwho took over official web-slinging duties last year, when he cameoed in Captain America: Civil Waris as good a Peter Parker as his predecessors, Toby Maguire and Andrew Garfield, bringing an aw-shucks adolescent excitement to the part that helps energize its coming-of-age drama. Its boasts the usual CGI set pieces, sprinkled amidst its Disney Channel-grade high-school hijinks (replete with Shake It Ups Zendaya as an Ally Sheedy-esque classmate). It has a villain (Michael Keatons Vulture) who acts menacing and winds up posing little genuine threat to our hero. Its colorful and snappy, moves along at a reasonable clip, and features appearances by a few other comic-book luminaries, including Robert Downey Jr.s Iron Man and Chris Evans Captain America.

It is, almost to a tee, the definition of fine.

So it goes for Marvel, which has pioneered a nontoxic house style thats now mandatory for each entry in its ever-expanding Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU)the designation for the countless franchises existing under the studios world-building umbrella (overseen by head honcho Kevin Feige). Spider-Man: Homecoming is merely the latest example of Marvels adherence to its formula: bright primary hues; brisk banter; rise-fall-rise narrative arcs; predictable dramatic and comedic beats; and special-effects sequences that substitute coherence for zippiness and flash. The result is that, whether its Spidey, Iron Man, Thor, Star-Lord or another wisecracking comic-book icon at the center of the action, a Marvel movie looks and sounds more or less the same.

For better and worse, Marvel has now become the leading proponent of what we might call Risk Aversion Cinemaan approach to 21st century blockbusterdom thats lucrative precisely because of its unadventurousness.

To be fair, some personality does occasionally sneak into the mixbe it Joss Whedons conversational volleys in The Avengers, Shane Blacks Christmastime fixation in Iron Man 3, or James Gunns smartass, soundtrack-centric humor in Guardians of the Galaxy. Even then, though, such distinctive touches are relatively minor, and often confined to the jokey writing side of things (a state of affairs probably also true of Novembers Taika Waititi-helmed Thor: Ragnarok). As with Jon Watts and Spider-Man: Homecoming (and Jon Favreau and Iron Man, and Kenneth Branagh and Thor, and Peyton Reed and Ant-Man, and also Anna Boden and Ryan Fleck and 2019s Captain Marvel), Marvel hires directors who boast scant auteurist signatures so that all MCU installments will fit together neatly in its larger patchwork quilt. Stylistic anonymity is preferred; assembly-line competence is prized above all else.

This is undoubtedly why the idiosyncratic Edgar Wright (Baby Driver) departed Ant-Man, and why the studios biggest tentpolesthe upcoming two Avengers: Infinity War movies, set to feature more than 60 superheroesare being entrusted to Captain America: Civil War craftsmen Joe and Anthony Russo. As Watts told us last year, Marvel has industry leading technicians and artists manning every available aspect of production. Consequently, the studio not only sees no benefit in enlisting a highly eccentric artist to adapt a beloved characterwhich could lead to creative conflicts, as well as potential audience backlashbut it also has no need to hire a director with action-blockbuster experience. In fact, its probably better if they dont; that way, they save money on filmmakers who are happy to toe the company line in return for a career-making opportunity, and everyone else involved makes sure the finished product is cookie-cutter uniform.

On the one hand, complaining about Marvels strategy seems mildly misplaced, given that its summer spectaculars are by and large passably entertaining, and never god-awful. And to be sure, the flip-side paradigm doesnt necessarily inspire more confidence, as evidenced by the lukewarm (to put it mildly) responses to Man of Steel and Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justiceboth helmed by Zack Snyder, whos built an entire career on the back of his atmospheric visual flairas well as Suicide Squad (from Furys David Ayer). In light of the tremendous success of Christopher Nolans Dark Knight trilogy, Warner Bros. and DC Comics likely assumed that the best way to differentiate their offerings from their Marvel counterparts was to go full-auteur. That such a tack hasnt fully panned out yet is proof of the enormous pitfalls of making daring decisions with immensely costly properties that have long histories and zealous fanbases.

On the other hand, however, this years two best superhero films do exactly that. Logan(a Marvel hero, but from Twentieth Century Fox) andWonder Woman(a DC heroine, from Warner Bros.) took bold chances with famous characters, to refreshingly novel, winning effect. With the former, director James Mangold and star Hugh Jackman threw the playbook out the window by presenting the clawed Wolverine as a post-mutant-apocalypse loner on one last Western-tinged mission; with the latter, filmmaker Patty Jenkins and headliner Gal Gadot reinvigorated tired genre tropes by giving them a feminist twist, all while wholeheartedly embracing the cornball optimism that had so far been absent from DCs god-like movie-verse. Following in the tradition of atypical precursors such as Tim BurtonsBatman, Sam RaimisSpider-Man, Guillermo Del TorosHellboy,and even last yearsDeadpool, they both delivered a potent thrill precisely because they went out on a ledge to give us something we hadnt seen beforeand, just as importantly, to infuse their material with a unique pop-mythology majesty.

Thats, ultimately, whats lacking from the competent, diverting Spider-Man: Homecominga sense of grandeur, of brashness, of peculiarity. Playing it safe is, of course, a precaution against franchise defection, the one thing that (considering the investment required to build and sustain these cinematic monoliths) Hollywood studios fear most. And its a tried-and-true approach that will no doubt reap further riches in the case of Homecoming, which is on track to earn upwards of $100 million this weekend. Still, by relegating its movies to functional puzzle pieces to be incorporated into a larger whole, Marvel has made its every release feel smaller and more mundane than the last. Its the perfection of proficiency, which guarantees that no one will leave the theater furious, but also that no one will leave amazed.

And in the case of Spider-Man, isnt amazing the entire point?

Read more: http://www.thedailybeast.com/spider-man-homecoming-and-the-problem-with-marvels-movie-formula


After making $3.5 million on Indiegogo, this palm-sized micro drone can be yours

Image: extreme toys

Just to let you know, if you buy something featured here, Mashable might earn an affiliate commission.

While smartphone-based VR is still in the early stages, there are some drones that prove the technology is coming along quicker than we think.

Smart, fast, and able to fit in the palms of your hands, the Micro Drone 3.0 is what weve all been waiting for.

With the power to stream 720p HD video directly to your device, you get a first-person view of the drones flight path as it cruises along at speeds up to 45 mph.

This kit comes with everything you need to fly, including a cardboard headset and inverted blades for belly-up orientation. For more tactile control than a capacitive touch screen, there’s also a 2.4 GHz handset that can extend your flight range up to 500 feet.

The Micro Drone 3.0 is also completely customizable with maneuverability settings that can be tweaked with the Extreme Flyers free phone app plus, its constructed from 3D printable modular components, allowing for some truly unique body shapes.

Usually $215, you can grab the Micro Drone 3.0 Combo Pack from our store for just $145.

Read more: http://mashable.com/2017/07/01/micro-drone-with-live-video-feed/