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Pansy

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    Constanteen PG15
  1. Not for a horror/supernatural or sci-fi. They are expected to fall AT LEAST 50% in the 2nd weekend. That's why they have to open huge. And Constantine is an R. It's behaving as pundits predicted. My guess is why they're announcing a sequel is because of its overseas box office receipts, and the fact they know they will make it back already. Don't forget DVD. And they didn't pay Keanu 15% of the gross box office receipts like the Matrix movies, so there'll be more in for Warner's coffers. A movie like Hitch is supposed to have soft falls, as with the genre. The beta test for any movie star is the opening weekend. That's why Will Smith (Hitch at 43 million) and Keanu (Constantine at 33 million - rated R) are paid the salaries they are paid.....to 'open' a movie. How the movie behaves thereafter depends on the quality of the movie, the word of mouth etc....etc... Hitch got marvelous word of mouth, as did Meet the Fockers, Aviator, the first Matrix etc. I think Constantine is heading towards domestic 60 - 70 million, just as I predicted from the beginning. But its overseas box office tally will be double that, so it might make over 200 million worldwide. Overseas, this kind of movie tends play better.
  2. That's brilliant, Prudence! Dan Brown should hire you, quick! Think there will be a Constantine sequel?
  3. No, it cost $90 million without ad budget. But don't forget there's worldwide gross to consider. Most films make it back.
  4. http://www.boxofficeprophets.com/column/in...m?columnID=8823 Keanu Reeves makes a big return to action with Constantine, but looks to come up just a little bit short of Will Smith in an attempt to open in the top spot. In other news, two $30 million films in February? The hell? Constantine Keanu Reeves' comic book adaptation pulled in $11.5 million Friday, a decent start to what seems to be a well-received film among audiences. We'll give it a 2.68 internal multiplier (that being the multiplier for two of 2004's B-list comic adaptations, The Punisher and Hellboy) for the three-day weekend and a $30.8 million tally. Hitch Hitch holds quite well, dropping only 34% from last Friday. It's going to be neck and neck with Constantine, but Will Smith's romantic comedy will most likely prevail by under a million. The overall weekend decline could be as low as 25% as it becomes the date film of choice over the next several weeks. Projected Estimates for the Top Ten (Three-Day) Projected Rank Film Estimated Gross 1 Hitch 30.9 2 Constantine 30.5 3 But it must be said Constantine is R rated, and opened in 500 theatres less than Hitch, so not everything is equal. But I bet many people here would never have guessed it would have been a 30 million opener, right?
  5. Oddly, they handed out opinion cards to be filled out at the end of viewing. A bit late, that. On the "plus" side, it seemed like mostly clusters of us "fanboy" (in the gender-neutral) types that stayed to put in the effort. Telling item: the top choice under "Why did you choose to see this film?" was "I like Keanu Reeves." Urk. Warner Bros is justifying his $20 million paycheck :) They are assessing if it's worth it to pay him this much for his next film. BTW, Constantine cost $90 million to make, and $20 million of that went to Keanu's salary. I totally understand what you all are saying. I'm not a reader of Hellblazer and so I can enjoy the film on its own merits. But the good thing is (as I've read from other boards), a lot of people are now inspired to pick the comic up, so you're gonna get a jump in sales. I'm a fan of Dan Brown myself, and when they cast Tom Hanks in the role in Da Vinci Code, I was protesting vehemently. I totally saw Harrison Ford in it (and indeed, Robert Langdon was described to resemble Harrison Ford.) So I know how you all feel.
  6. Very objective review, Selkie. Just curious, everyone. How is the box office? Were the lines long? Was the cinemas full? I'm from Asia and here it has been virtually sold out for the past 2 weeks since it's been out. And I brought along my mother and my brother, and they loved it.
  7. The big reviewers are coming in. Here's TIME: http://www.time.com/time/magazine/article/...1027514,00.html Halfway through Constantine, a fully clad Keanu Reeves steps into a shallow pail of water, sits on a chair next to it and holds a cat in his lap. Any actor who can retain his charisma in this weird-silly moment--can keep us watching, and admiring his dutiful nonchalance--deserves to be called a movie star. In this adaptation of a renowned graphic novel, Reeves is an L.A. detective whose job involves casting devils out of Angelenos. (He's the detexorcist!) He has to deal with both demons and angels, who in the normal state of affairs influence humans without directly interfering. But now, with the discovery of a long-lost artifact--the spear that killed Jesus on Calvary--the familiar rules don't apply, and an Armageddon- like battle is on. Taking The Da Vinci Code's obsession with Catholic arcana a step further, Constantine is a one-of-a-kind hybrid: a theological noir action film. And until it goes irrevocably goofy at the end, it's a smart ride--and smart-looking too, with rich browns predominant. Director Francis Lawrence (from music videos, of course) shoots a scene from every possible angle--curbside, bird's-eye view--so that the cameramen have to be stuntmen. There's both eye and mind candy in this cleverly berserk spawn of Blade Runner. Surrounded by real actors (Tilda Swinton at her most immaculately decadent as the angel Gabriel, pinwheeling Peter Stormare as Satan, Rachel Weisz as The Girl), Reeves holds his own, creating a force field around his watchful entropy. In his early years, he may have been only a nerd's idea of a hip guy. Now, at 40, he has achieved a freon-cool satori, which makes him the perfect, still center of a visually agitated, intellectually restless movie. --By Richard Corliss It has a lengthier article on Keanu Reeves. http://www.time.com/time/magazine/article/...1027496,00.html
  8. Oh, and John Shirley, I thought your descriptions of the characters was also spot on, with the exception of Constantine himself. What you wrote about him had me imagining - if I hadn't seen the movie - a hard-bitten, world-weary Sam Spade type of character, pale as a ghost and unkempt as yesterday's Salvation Army rejects. In the movie, however, Keanu Reeves is sharply-dressed, slicked and wears expensively tailored clothes. I didn't think he was that pale (no paler than Neo) and he's so pretty he probably wouldn't have Angela (as you described) thinking of him as merely "vaguely appealing." Oh no, this is one visual character who would have most every woman - tough cop, half-breed demon or not - swooning at his feet. This is the best I have seen him look since 1999's Matrix.
  9. Hi John Shirley, I just finished reading your novelization, and I found it pretty good. It's so interesting that you infused each character - however minor - with a wealth of background and motivations. I like especially what you did with Gabriel's motivations in the end - and how you explained one concept that was puzzling to me in the movie (I thought he was pure archangel....I didn't know he was half-breed.) I also liked what you did with the scavenger...you gave him a name - Francisco! Great! It was really great how much you read into the script, which couldn't have offered that many clues. I would have liked to have seen Ellie in the movie - unfortunately she was cut out of every scene except for the one in the end. But pretty much of what you described did end up in the actual film. All in all, it is very superior writing. Just curious, how long did it take you to write this? Was it easy? Did you have to sift through production notes? Compare stills? Look at set drawings?
  10. And another one........all I'm saying is: Go in with an open mind. It's NOT the Constantine of the comics. But it's helluva entertaining and well-crafted film. http://www.aint-it-cool-news.com/display.cgi?id=19361 The D.C. Curse Lifted? CONSTANTINE is Cool? That's what Hunter Rose says... Hey folks, Harry here... I see this sucker tomorrow and I've got a basically positive feeling about this. The only hesitancy comes from the WB logo and the phrase... "comic book movie" - will this be their BLADE before their X-MEN? We'll see. And I'll see in less than 24... Here's hoping! A quick note after seeing a sneak preview of Constantine tonight here in Rochester, NY. Being a comic book geek of long standing, I was impressed that the filmmakers showed both craftsmanship and a respect for the source material. The simple premise is that John Constantine's life is like one horror movie after another; his burden is to spend his days kicking slimy evil asses back into the darkness, again and again, like a spiritual cop. After years of this, he has garnered a reputation both in heaven and hell, and the burden has taken its toll on him. Now, he has little time left to redeem his sins, and prevent Hell literally breaking loose on Earth. The film advances slowly but not ponderously, building like a symphony, carefully playing out each scene; neither too fast nor too slow, delivering shot after exquisite shot of artistically crafted frames -- some funny, some illustrative, and many horrific. Constantine manages to have both action and special effects, without becoming pigeonholed as an action/sfx movie. The John Constantine of the movie is somewhat more careworn and dour than the smirking, wisecracking asshole of the DC/Vertigo continuity, but Keanu Reeves and the writers managed to synthesize a new Constantine persona that does not dishonor the name. Rachel Weisz is decent, without having been given very much to work with; Tilda Swinton as an androgynous angel (of course) is a visual delight in every scene she appears in. I can quibble with some details. Like many movies that choose to play in the Revelations sandbox, the internal mythology treats Roman Catholicism as, apparently, the only religion in the world -- ignoring the myriad other flavors of Christianity, not to mention those pesky non-Xtian religions. The moral lesson that Constantine needs to learn is Sunday School stuff -- obvious even to the crudest mind. Also, watch carefully about halfway through the movie for a gigantic, screaming clue that essentially gives away the surprise reveal of the climax. Overall, a tasty urban fantasy / horror / action flick; and a good first foray for the Vertigo imprint onto the silver screen, that hopefully will pave the way for other properties that are long overdue. Hunter Rose here's Vincent Hanna, someone with zero knowledge of the book - but a wishy washy feeling on the whole thing. Actually - he pretty much likes it, but there's some intangible that doesn't work for him. Sounds like this could work... Vincent Hanna here. I know you've already used a couple Constantine reviews, but I just saw it and thought you might want to use another. Thanks. Knowing absolutely nothing about the Hellblazer comic book, I didn't know exactly what to expect with Constantine. The trailer made it look moderately intriguing and I'm fond of stories that have religious undertones and deal with faith, good and evil. So I took my seat, crossed my fingers, opened my bad of candy and hoped for the best. Constantine begins in Mexico. Two men are digging, for what I'm not sure, and one of them steps through some boards buried under the dirt and stumbles upon some sort of a dagger. Immediately prior to this, we have been told that a specific sword holds the key to controlling mankind, and that it's been missing since WWII. It's not hard to put two and two together. Then we are introduced to John Constantine. A priest (Pruitt Taylor Vince) calls him to save a young girl who is possessed by something. John performs an exorcism on her, which fails. Surprised, he asks for a mirror at least three feet tall. He chants and brings a "soldier demon" out of the girl. The demon is sucked into the mirror, which Constantine throws out the window, destroying it. Since demons are not supposed to cross over, Constantine is puzzled by what has happened. As he investigates, the audience begins to learn a little bit about him. Born with the ability to see both angels and demons on Earth, he commits suicide as a teenager and is dead for two long minutes before being brought back to life. Now attempting to save his damned soul and earn his way into heaven, Constantine uses his ability to fight the demons. As he explains to the twin sister (Rachel Weisz) of an apparent suicide victim (also Weisz), God and the devil, just for shits and giggles, have made a wager for the souls of human beings. The angels and demons, working on their behalf since they are forbidden direct contact with humans, are the intermediaries. Angela, a police officer, does not believe that her sister, Isabel, would ever kill herself due to her unwavering belief in God. When she spots something odd on the surveillance footage from the psychiatric hospital where her sister was a patient, she enlists the help of Constantine. She has heard of the circles he travels in and hopes he can point her in the right direction. Upon leaving his apartment after wishing her luck, he spots a demon following her and soon discovers that Angela is somehow tied to the strange exorcism he performed earlier. The problem with Constantine is that while it is always engaging, it never progresses into something more. It travels in a completely straight line. It starts off pretty good and ends up the exact same way. No momentum is built and the grand finale is anti-climactic. It fails to build into a satisfying whole and leaves one feeling a tad frustrated. There is a lot to admire, though. For starters, Francis Lawrence makes an impressive debut behind the camera. I feel that far too many genre efforts have been over-directed lately, everything from Saw to Boogeyman. As if knowing full well that the story isn't up to snuff, the director (along with the editor and sound department) uses excessively flashy visuals in an effort to disguise or distract from a weak screenplay. They employ quick cuts and fancy angles and loud noises and whatever else they can conjure up, though it rarely, if ever, works. Thankfully, Lawrence's direction is mostly restrained. He doesn't resort to camera tricks or pounding music or frenzied editing. He allows the story to breath and gradually reveal itself over the two-hour running time. It's a very respectable, admirable debut. Reeves, a punching bag for so long, acquits himself nicely. Though the chain smoking Constantine is your standard anti-hero, cynical and brooding and stoic, Reeves underplays the role and is convincing from beginning to end. He doesn't have to clear a space on his mantel to make room for an Oscar or anything, but it's a good performance. He is helped by an excellent supporting cast. In addition to Weisz, Tilda Swinton, Pruitt Taylor Vince, Djimon Hounsou, Peter Stormare and even Gavin Rossdale are a welcome presence. Only Shia LaBeouf disappoints as the nerdy wannabe sidekick character around only to offer comic relief, which doesn't really work. The concept of a man desperately working to earn his way into heaven after committing a mortal sin is a fascinating one. And even though the religious mumbo jumbo occasionally gets a little corny, for the most part it's handled competently and never becomes tedious or convoluted. Why, then, am I not more enthusiastic about Constantine? It isn't easy to explain. The movie is well made, entertaining and certainly worth seeing. I didn't even mind the abundant CGI (which I normally hate) because Lawrence used it to enhance the story rather than tell it for him. But once it has your attention, it seems content to hold it without ever really challenging it. It's not as dark or intense as you'd hope, and ultimately concludes in a fairly conventional manner. Close, but no cigar. Vincent
  11. Anyway, to prove I'm not a plant, there are a few other people who agree with me. And I have read some of the comics, thanks to James :) . I'm especially intrigued if they'd ever do a Wyrm Queen plotline. Now that's one lady I'd like to see on screen. This is from the Hollywood Reporter http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/thr/revie...t_id=1000790342 By Michael Rechtshaffen Bottom line: Reeves plays an effective Neo realist in this clever, funny, provocative sci-fi/horror extravaganza. "Constantine," based on characters populating the DC Comics/Vertigo "Hellblazer" graphic novels, is one of those rare pulpy page-to-screen translations that actually gets it right. An engrossing mix of atmospheric gothic horror and smart sci-fi that's cemented by intriguing mythology, terrific visual effects, a dry sense of humor and an ideally cast Keanu Reeves, the picture officially heralds the end of the New Year release doldrums. Appreciative audiences should mark the occasion by creating a sizable boxoffice splash for the Warner Bros. Pictures release. Although it's probably too dark to reach the heights of an "X-Men" or "Spider-Man," international business should be equally impressive, making a sequel definitely within the realm of possibility. Unlike so many other first-time feature directors who made their name helming music videos, Francis Lawrence -- who created eye-catching clips for Justin Timberlake, Janet Jackson and Will Smith, among others -- hasn't opted for a flashy visual style at the expense of story and character. He quickly gets down to the business of immersing the viewer in "Constantine's" intriguing environment -- one in which the otherworldly manifestations of heaven and hell are on the verge of being thrown out of their precarious balance right here on Earth. Specifically speaking, that would be Los Angeles, where Reeves' John Constantine spends his tortured days and nights ensuring that balance isn't knocked out of kilter through less-than-divine intervention. For the uninitiated, Constantine has been cursed with the lifelong ability to see the true demonic or beatific faces of the "half-breeds" living among us -- intermediaries who have been sent back to Earth to do the bidding of their respective commanders in chief. An expert in demonology, Constantine has been keeping busy dispatching a disturbing influx of evil half-breeds back to hell, but his intentions are far from being heroic. Recently diagnosed with terminal lung cancer, the chain-smoking anti-hero is really just in it for himself, hoping that with all that satanic butt-kicking, he might be able to buy his way into heaven. But his strategy is complicated with the arrival of Angela Dodson (the always welcome Rachel Weisz), a stoical police detective whose sister has committed what appears to be suicide. There's actually, refreshingly, a lot more plot to go around thanks to clever writing officially credited to Kevin Brodbin and Frank Cappello, but there's the sense that producer Akiva Goldsman also made some contributions to the script, which is filled with great characters. Among them is Tilda Swinton's gender-blurring Gabriel, Peter Stormare's self-styled Satan (in a white suit), Gavin Rossdale's slick Balthazar and Djimon Hounsou's noncommittal Midnite, whose offbeat nightclub serves as a neutral meeting ground for half-breeds of both persuasions. But it's Reeves who, outfitted with an economy of dialogue and costume designer Louise Frogley's sleek monochromatic apparel, gets the requisite film noir look and attitude down cold. He and Weisz, who once again projects a beguiling combination of beauty and intelligence, make for a classically cynical graphic novel couple. Working in perfect harmony with Lawrence's organic direction, the writing and performances are the technical contributions, particularly those of cinematographer Philippe Rousselot ("Big Fish"), production designer Naomi Shohan ("Training Day") and visual effects supervisor Michael Fink (the "X-Men" movies), who succeed in turning downtown Los Angeles into a convincingly hellish Hades on Earth.
  12. Caught a press screening of Constantine in Asia, and I'm not bound by any non disclosure contract. But here's the advanced word: if you like noirish, kind of break-the-mould movies, you'll like this. If you like 'happy,' follow-the-proven-script movies like National Treasure, then you'll definitely find this - to put it in the words of Morpheus - "a little weird." To be honest, I haven't seen a movie quite like this before. There's just nothing to compare it to - it's original, fresh....and more than a little weird. It's certainly not feel-good, it's more than a little disturbing, and it's right up my alley :) There are several plotlines running through this story, beginning with The Spear of Destiny being found by a Mexican scavenger. After acquiring it, he gains superpowers. He gets hit by a car in a spectacular opening scene, but it's the car that gets ka-pow instead. After that, he's driven to seek a destiny in Los Angeles. We then get introduced to Constantine, who's a bitter, wry-humored individual who smokes more than 30 packs of cigarettes a day. I like the way Keanu Reeves plays him, and this is certainly one of his better performances. It's far from Neo, certainly not Ted, and not even close to his character as the Devil's son in Devil's Advocate. In fact, I've never seen Keanu Reeves play such a character before. It's ....like the movie....fresh and original. Constantine is on his way to a poor tenement to exorcise a demon out of a Hispanic girl. This he does with a mirror and marvellous CGI. Only it's found it's a soldier demon, and soldier demons (from hell) are not supposed to break through to Earth. Something's happening here. Exorcism out of the way, Constantine goes to hospital, and finds out he has lung cancer. Now I've read some of the early looks, and I must say that in the finished movie, every subplotline is significant here. It all does come together nicely in the end. We're introduced to another main character, Angela - played wonderfully by Rachel Weisz. She's a police detective investigating the suicide of her twin sister. "She can't have committed suicide," she tells her parish priest, "Isabel was a staunch Catholic. She would never take her own life." The two characters meet each other in a sequence of deadpan events, designed to further Constantine's character. In the hospital where John discovers he has lung cancer, Angela is also there at the morgue to identify her sister's dead body. He goes into the elevator, and she rushes to it, saying "Hold the door please." But he presses the Close button and shuts it in her face. "Some of us are going down," he says. (Not a pleasant man, this.) And I thought it was hilarious. And I found myself wishing there were more sequences like this. After finding the link to Constantine, Angela goes to his apartment to ask him for help. I won't go deeply into the movie because it's quite complicated. There are so many subplotlines and characters running around, interspersed with attacks from demons and excursions into hell. But things I did like: 1. The character of John Constantine - one of Keanu's best roles ever! I like his deadpan humor, his brooding cynical view of the world (and beyond.) 2. Angela - she was played to a tee by Rachel 3. The excursions into hell - it's a hell of Dante's Inferno, writihing lost souls being tortured and all. I found myself wishing there were more scenes of it 4.The CGI - it's marvelous. One of the best CGI horror films I've ever seen. 5. The cinematography angles - the director has a Matrix-esque style that is not quite Wachowski, but fresh. There were moments I thought that looked very Matrix, like the slow-mo droplets of water onto the floor, or a cigarette butt falling slowly.....but it didn't detract from the overall mood of the film. Things I thought could have been done better: 1. The storyline could have been less confusing, more together 2. The crescendo to the finishing like could have been better, there could have been better build up to the climax 3. Do not expect a climax of explosions, massive fighting etc....it is a climax of dogma, of the devil and god and all that stuff. It's certainly disturbing, but one that I thought could have been done better Altogether, the scenes from the movie and the theme of it all disturbed me. It is a movie I would recommend, but with a warning label to indicate it's not for the faint hearted. And it's certainly not for those who like feel-good stuff. There's nothing feel-good about this. Over and out :)
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