Monday, August 18, 2014

The heat continues!!!  What is worse is the heat is here, the nights are still cool but our drought has gotten so much worse.  With the rain levels so far this year being dismal, remember our past Winter was basically a light Summer??  The showers we did get only lasted hours to minutes, nothing really lasted more than a day and our reserves are nearly empty.  We need water desperately in the So Cali region but we can't just make rain happen.  I don't have two-bits to spend on a rainmaker to get the party started and I don't think their rain seeds work ... oh but how I wish they did!  I think just about every city in the the South land would invest in them, buy them, build them ... use them!!  But then we would also become a swamp or something with too much moisture and water ... oh the irony.

Weekly Update:
This week was a bit more calm after last week filled with sadness.  Not saying it was all good or bad, just saying it was a bit better.  But aside from that ... yet another boring week in general.  I did manage to do a bunch of errands but that was about it ... drove all over town, dropped this off, picked this up, delivered this. I felt like a combo taxi and delivery service at times.  Was just missing the little horn (meep meep) and the reverse beep beep beeping noise!

At the movies:
The heroes in the half-shell were able to defend the crown this weekend as "Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles" earns another 28.4 million and gets past the 100 mil cume mark.  Look for a pretty quick burn after this weekend though as we wrap up Summer.  Also holding ground at #2 is "Guardians of the Galaxy" bringing in another 24.7 mil for its third weekend as it pushes its way past 200 mil!  New at #3 is the comedy "Let's Be Cops" as it debuts at 17.7 mil for the weekend (26.1 mil total with a Wednesday opening) and word-of-mouth isn't strong on this film.  In at #4 is the big budgeted action film "The Expendables 3" earning 16.2 mil which is on the low-end of the prediction range.  Talks are already on for a 4th installment, this film must be big overseas to warrant it.  Rounding off the top 5 is "The Giver" with a respectable 12.8 mil and could see a little longevity at the box office before the Summer is over.

Quote of the week:
"There is no sadder sight than a young pessimist." - Mark Twain

Facts & Tips:
You can tell which day a loaf of bread was baked by the color of its plastic twist tag.

"I must break you." - Dolph Lundgren as Ivan Drago in "Rocky IV." 

Monday, August 11, 2014

Summer time ... it here.  A bit more humidity but not terrible but still very warm.  Still the nights remain cold, thank goodness, but it doesn't really hit till after 9 or 10PM.  Well, I guess it could be worst but now that I said that, I hope I didn't just jinx it all!!!  I guess as long as we don't have humidity, we will survive!  Humidity is just down right nasty and so very uncomfortable.

Weekly Update:
This was a very sad week not by just me but the world.  On Monday Hollywood (and the world) lost a big chunk of laughter as legendary and acclaimed comedian, Robin Williams, passed away.  From initial reports it looks like it was an apparent suicide.  It was no hidden secret he suffered from depression but he never let it slow him down or stop him from making everyone around him happy.  He would fight and claw to get someone to laugh or smile ... I wish we could have done the same for him.  His list of films credits is very expansive but I remember when I first saw him on TV, the show "Happy Days" when he played a visiting alien named Mork.  That character later went on to his own show and there I enjoyed watching him again once a week for half an hour.  He later went on to movies and one that stands out the most for me right now is "Good Morning Vietnam!" where he portrayed a real shock jock in the military during the Vietnam War. The world lost a big chuckle and like in "Dead Poet's Society" I say to you sir, "Oh Captain My Captain."  Robin was 63.

Then just a couple days later we lost another Hollywood icon from the silver screen as Lauren Bacall passes away.  She was a big part of the Golden Age of movies starring in films with John Wayne and Humphrey Bogart.  Her sultry voice was distinct and she can be seen alongside other Hollywood legends such as Marilyn Monroe and Betty Grable in "How to Marry a Millionaire."  She had a haunting yet beautiful stare that was almost a siren's call or a Medusa's gaze ... seemed wrong yet you felt right gazing upon her.  Other amazing credits include "The Big Sleep," "Murder on the Orient Express" and "Dogville."  One of her most iconic and famous lines, not just her but in all movie history, was to Humphrey Bogart in "To Have and Have Not" as she was leaving the room ... "You do know how to whistle, don't you Steve? You just put your lips together and blow." She was 89.

At the movies:
Just when we thought Summer may be over and the box office was down, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles (shell) shocks us all!!  Hitting a big #1 as it overshoots all estimations with a nice 65 million for its debut.  Still going strong but dipping to the #2 spot is "Guardians of the Galaxy" with an extra 41.5 mil as it makes it way to the 200 mil cume mark.  New at #3 is Into the Storm and some last minute adjustments brought its estimation way down ... I am not sure where those initial numbers came from but it only hit 18 mil for the weekend.  Also new at #4 is The Hundred-Foot Journey which hit well within expectations at 11.1 mil.  Rounding off the top 5 is "Lucy" earning another 9.3 mil as it is so close to 100 mil cume and should hit that by the end of this coming week.

New movies that did not make the top 5:
Just one this week as the Step Up All In franchise comes in at #6 with 6.6 mil, a bit below expectations but it was a busy weekend otherwise!

Quote of the week:
"America has given the Negro people a bad check which has come back marked "insufficient funds." But we refuse to believe that the bank of justice is bankrupt. We refuse to believe that there are insufficient funds in the great vaults of opportunity of this nation. So we have come to cash this check -- a check that will give us upon demand the riches of freedom and the security of justice. We have also come to this hallowed spot to remind America of the fierce urgency of now. This is no time to engage in the luxury of cooling off or to take the tranquilizing drug of gradualism." - Martin Luther King, Jr.

Facts & Tips:
Ferret comes from the Latin word for little thief.

"When I think about everything we've been through together, maybe it's not the destination that matters, maybe it's the journey, and if that journey takes a little longer, so we can do something we all believe in, I can't think of any place I'd rather be or any people I'd rather be with." - Garrett Wang as Harry Kim in the TV series "Star Trek: Voyager."

Monday, August 04, 2014

And the heat continues on!  It even brought some rain with it which was really nice but very little, we need some major t-storms and down pours for days please!  I don't want to run the AC because that uses so much electricity plus the fact it feels odd to have it running all day and then turn it off at night, open the windows and let all that created cold air go out the window.  Is it just me or does that seem odd to anyone else?  Anyone?  Anyone?  But I will say this, the humidity has been bringing some crazy clouds like it should be cold and going to rain soon ... but no cold.  Just rain ... would like a lot more of both please, we can really use it!

Weekly Update:
So this was a little interesting of a week.  Went to visit an old friend and in that course, we ended up staying to watch the Chelsea Lately show which, I have to say, runs like a well-oiled machine in just under 25 minutes flat but watching her do a monologue, she is completely dead-pan boring.  The round table of guests were over doing it for the most part and the main guest was Kelsey Grammer who seemed nice but alas, did not get to met him.  I just realized that is the third time he has eluded me but this particular time was the closest I have gotten to him, oh well, perhaps another time and place.  But other than that, the week was for the most part quiet as usual ... boring and quiet.

At the movies:
And the winner is .... no surprise at all as Guardians of the Galaxy hits BIG with a solid 94 million to open.  Way above all expectations and Disney/Marvel continues to steamroll all the competition in this film genre!  Holding ground at #2 is "Lucy" with another 18.3 mil as it gets closer to that 100 mil cume and should reach it in the next couple of weeks.  New at #3 is the bio-pic Get On Up with 14 mil, almost on point for opening expectations and should do well overall.  Drop to #4 is "Hercules" with 10.7 mil extra and just no more muscle in this film to carry it further.  Rounding off the top 5 is "Dawn of the Planet of the Apes" with another 8.7 mil as it struggles to reach 200 mil cume but should hit it sooner than later.

Quote of the week:
"Get your criminal attorney now.  Should something go south, you won't have the luxury of shopping around." - Paula Poundstone

Facts & Tips:
Louisiana is home to over 80% of the world's crayfish.

"*Him*? You fell in love with a boy?" - Abigail Breslin as Olive Hoover in "Little Miss Sunshine."

Monday, July 28, 2014

What is this, Florida?!  The weather this past week has been so humid, it was like I am in Florida again.  I am not sure what is going on but we do not have this kind of weather.  Our heat is dry!  The air is so heavy and feels like I can scoop it with a spoon.  Most nights the heat breaks but humidity can last all day and night.  I am not sure when this desert turned into a tropical zone but stop it!  I don't even know if it is bringing any moisture except to my armpits and back!  Seriously though, can we make this stop??

Weekly Update:
Not a whole lot this past week ... it was quiet ... to quiet in fact.  I don't know, I am just so bored I guess.  I didn't go to San Diego Comic-Con this year but that is a good thing.  After last year's craziness, it was nice to take a week off plus I heard the lines, crowds and weather were all awful!  But aside from all of that ... I guess this is new news ... I've started writing for an online contribution site for what I write here about the weekly box office recap.  They reached out to my local comic book store and that store reached out to me because I guess I can write a little better than they can so now my recap is seen by hundreds of people (so far), the site has a potential 40 million viewers.  Along with that I have done two interview exclusives that including Doug Jones for "Falling Skies" and Guillermo del Toro for his new show "The Strain."  Next up, Stan Lee for just cool stuff in general.  Now, if I can just figure out a way to get paid for doing all of this, that would be nice.

At the movies:

No major surprises at the box office but despite San Diego Comic-Con going on, the box office was fairly healthy this past weekend.  Debuting at #1 is the action-thriller Lucy with a nice 44 million opening, pretty on par with estimations.  Also new at #2 is Hercules with a good 29 mil and also well on par with estimations, like I said, it was healthy week.  Dropping down to #3 is "Dawn of the Planet of the Apes" earning an extra 16.4 mil as it slowly makes its way to 200 mil cum and should hit that in a few more weeks.  Big drop to #4 is "Purge: The Anarchy" with another 9.9 mil as it will soon lose all its steam.  Rounding off the top 5 is "Planes: Fire & Rescue" with another 9.3 mil as this animated film does a little crash and burn of its own.
New movies that did not make the top 5:
Just one this week as And So It Goes earns only 4.5 mil which is just a little short of expectations for this semi-wide release (about 1700 screens).  This one will probably fade away really fast ... and so it goes and so it went.

Quote of the week:
"We can forgive the Arabs for killing our children. We cannot forgive them for forcing us to kill their children.  We will only have peace with the Arabs when they love their children more than they hate us." - Golda Meir

Facts & Tips:
Snoopy is the most common dog name beginning with the letter S.

"Grandpa said you use to live in a closet." - Nolan Gould as Luke Dunphy in the TV series "Modern Family."

Monday, July 21, 2014

Cooooool ... yep, the weather cooled down nicely this week overall and even got pretty cold at night I had to get under the covers, close up some windows, it is nice.  I wish the Winter was like this but this is only one week of nice weather.  The days were breezy but cool, it was just cool.  Breezes are very important and I wish we could make some kind of huge breeze generator but then it would take a lot of electricity for something of that magnitude I would imagine.  Even if you used its own power (wind), probably wouldn't be enough.  Wonder if you took thousands of wind generators to power one breeze machine!!  But yeah, I am sure that would cost billions of dollars for something that probably wouldn't work ... but it's a funny dream.

Weekly Update:
The week was pretty standard for me except for Wednesday.  It was our 4th Annual Variety Poker Tournament at the Paramount Studio Lot.  The day started off warm during set-up but the breeze was good and so was the AC inside the theatre.  But as night came, it got pretty chilly but not too bad and the event started to get underway.  Most of my invited guests showed up but a few didn't, but that happens in this business.  I was very thankful for my friend Katrina who brought a bunch of extra talent from a show she did a couple years ago called "Spartacus" on the Starz movie channel.  But aside from that, got a few pics to add to the collection:

*James Kyson - best known for the show "Heroes" and a pretty nice guy.
*Ellen Hollman - from "Spartacus" and amazing!
*Anna Hutchison - also from "Spartacus" and very sweet.
*Nawal Bengholam - various small projects but very sweet.

At the movies:
The apes continue to dominate the box office as "Dawn of the Planet of the Apes" earns another 36 million this weekend and has completely surpassed the 100 mil cume mark as expected (139 mil).  New at #2 is Purge: The Anarchy earning 28.4 mil which surpassed all expectations.  Flying in at #3 is Planes: Fire & Rescue with 18 mil which is slightly below expectations for this animated sequel but could sustain a decent number for a couple more weeks.  Also new at #4 is Sex Tape earning 15 mil which is very below predictions, could be the R-Rated comedies are all played out for the Summer.  Rounding off the top 5 is "Transformers: Age of Extinction" with another 10 mil as it hits 227 mil cume and should end off around 250+ when it is all said and done.

Quote of the week:
Wise men don't need advice; fools don't take it." - Benjamin Franklin

Facts & Tips:
The Statue of Liberty's nose is four feet six inches long.

"Listen. Can you hear it? The music. I can hear it everywhere. In the wind... in the air... in the light. It's all around us. All you have to do is open yourself up. All you have to do... is listen." - Freddie Highmore as August Rush in "August Rush."