Tagged: Kevin Hageman

[FILM REVIEW] THE CROODS: A NEW AGE Review (2020)

Summary: The Croods better the Betterman family but is their way of living really as good as what they believe it is.

Year: 2020

Cinema Release Dates: 16th December 2020 (Australia), 26th November (Thailand), 25th November (USA), 5th February 2021 (UK)

VOD Release Dates: TBA

Country: USA

Director: Joel Crawford

Screenwriter: Paul Fisher, Dan Hageman, Kevin Hageman, Bob Logan

Cast: Nicolas Cage (Grug), Kailey Crawford (Sandy (voice)), Peter Dinklage (Phil Betterman (voice)), Clark Duke (Thunk (voice)), Gabriel Jack (Young Guy (voice)), Catherine Keener (Ugga (voice)), Cloris Leechman (Gran (voice)), Leslie Mann (Hope Betterman (voice)), Ryan Reynolds (Guy (voice)), James Ryan (Sash (voice)), Chris Sanders (Belt (voice)), Emma Stone (Eep (voice)), Kelly Marie Tran (Dawn Betterman (voice))

Running Time: 95 mins

Classification: PG (Australia), G (Thailand), PG (USA)

OUR THE CROODS: A NEW AGE REVIEWS

David Griffiths’ The Croods: A New Age Review:

The Croods! Easily the best family to come out of prehistoric times since The Flintstones and they are back in the new animated family film The Croods: A New Age. It is hard to believe that it has been seven years since the first film in the franchise was released – but then as a film itself The Croods did some pretty unbelievable things in its time.

Remember back to 2013 – The Croods was never expected to become the Oscar-nominated hit that it was. Realistically it was supposed to be an alternative to the all conquering animated series of the day – films like Toy Story and Ice Age. Those films were filled with star power, The Croods was not. This cave-dwelling family was being voiced by star on the rise Emma Stone, the man who had become a B-Grade-straight-to-video guy – Nicolas Cage – and Ryan Reynolds who was licking his wounds after the flop that was Green Lantern.

Somehow though The Croods not only became a successful film but it gained a legion of fans, received a Best Animated Film Oscar nomination and managed to make a tidy $187 million at the Box Office. A sequel was always going to arrive it was just a matter of when the three leads would find time to find work on it.

Well now the sequel has landed in cinemas and picks up pretty much straight after the events of the first film. Grug (Cage – Gone In Sixty Seconds) is still protecting his family from all matter of creatures while disapproving of the relationship that he can see developing between his teenage daughter Eep (Stone – La, La Land) and the new comer to their ‘family’ the adventurous Guy (Reynolds – Deadpool).

But the entire family’s lives changes forever when on Guy’s search for tomorrow they suddenly come across a farm being run by the more sophisticated Bettermans. And while the father, Phil (Peter Dinklage – Game Of Thrones) is eager to learn more about The Croods and his daughter, Dawn (Kelly Marie TranStars Wars: The Rise Of Skywalker), quickly becomes friends with Eep, the mother, Hope (Leslie Mann – Knocked Up) wants all of The Croods, bar Guy, gone as fast as possible.

Yes, the plot of The Croods: A New Age is pretty thin. It is a story that has been done so many times on screen that most audience members will see where it is heading pretty early on. A family from the wrong side of the tracks meets a family who believes they have it all figured out – if you’ve watched shows like Keeping Up Appearances or Married With Children you will have seen this play out a million times before.

What keeps the film interesting though is the work of the screenwriting team that is led by Kevin and Dan Hageman (the guys behind the highly successful The Lego Movie franchise) who have delivered an absolutely hilarious script that keeps the audience laughing throughout. To their credit they don’t just deliver one or two funny lines every now and then they keep the humour coming at a fast pace and that helps the audience forget that the storyline is very, very predictable.

Likewise director Joel Crawford (Trolls Holiday) appears to have learnt from his time spent in the Trolls universe as he brings bright and flashy colours to this film – a stark difference to the first film which used a much duller palate as it strove to capture the greys and browns of prehistoric times. Crawfords take on The Croods sees a lot of musical numbers and quick moving montages that move the story along nicely without ever over-staying there welcome. In a year where cinema has been all over the place it is quite refreshing to be able to once again visit the world of The Croods. While The Croods: A New Age does take the original story in a whole new direction it also reminds us all just how fun this family is and is the perfect film for people of all ages this holiday season.

Dave’s Rating Out Of 5:

Average Subculture Rating:

IMDB Rating:

The Croods: A New Age (2020) on IMDb

Other Subculture The Croods: A New Age Reviews:

You can find our review of The Croods: A New Age that appeared in The Phuet News right here – https://www.thephuketnews.com/the-croods-make-a-comeback-78289.php

Trailer:

 

Summary: It’s 1968 in America. Change is blowing in the wind…but seemingly far removed from the unrest in the cities is the small town of Mill Valley where for generations, the shadow of the Bellows family has loomed large. It is in their mansion on the edge of town that Sarah, a young girl with horrible secrets, turned her tortured life into a series of scary stories, written in a book that has transcended time-stories that have a way of becoming all too real for a group of teenagers who discover Sarah’s terrifying tomb.

Year: 2019

Australian Cinema Release Date: 26th September 2019

Thailand Cinema Release Date: TBA

Australian DVD Release Date: 12th February 2020

Country: United States, Canada, Hong Kong

Director: Andre Ovredal

Screenwriter: Dan Hageman, Kevin Hageman, Guillermo del Toro (story), Patrick Melton (story), Marcus Dunstan (story), Alvin Schwartz (novels)

Cast: Austin Abrams (Tommy Milner), Hume Baugh (Deodat Bellows), Gil Bellows (Chief Turner), Javier Botet (Big Toe Corpse), Will Carr (Ephraim Bellows), Zoe Margaret Colletti (Stella Nicholls), Victoria Fodor (Mrs. Milner), Natalie Ganzhorn (Ruth Steinberg), Michael Garza (Ramon Morales), Karen Glave (Claire Baptiste), Troy James (Jangly Man), Brandon Knox (Harold Bellows), Kyle Labine (Deputy Hobbs), Jane Moffat (Delanie Bellows), Dean Norris (Roy Nicholls), Kathleen Pollard (Sarah Bellows), Deborah Pollitt (Mrs. Steinberg), Gabriel Rush (Auggie Hilderbrandt), Amanda Smith (Gertrude Bellows), Matt Smith (Mr. Steinberg), Mark Stegar (Harold The Scarecrow/Pale Lady), Ajanae Stephenson (Lou Lou – 8yrs), Lorraine Toussaint (Lou Lou), Marie Ward (Mrs. Hilderbrandt), Austin Zajur (Chuck Steinberg)

Running Time: 108 mins

Classification: M (Australia) 13 (Thailand)

 

 

OUR SCARY STORIES TO TELL IN THE DARK REVIEWS & RATINGS:

 

Dave Griffiths’ Our Scary Stories To Tell In The Dark Review:

After the disappointment that was It Chapter Two it is with a sense of relief that I am able to say that Scary Stories To Tell In The Dark was a film that surprised me a lot more than I thought it would. The film feels like it should be described as Goosebumps for teenagers but there seems to be something a little darker to this film that will mean that horror fans of all ages will be drawn to the film.

Based on the novel by Alvin Schwartz the film follows a group of young friends – the horror-obsessed Stella Nicholls (Zoe Margaret Colletti – Annie, Wildlife), the very mature Auggie Hilderbrandt (Gabriel Rush – Moonrise Kingdom, No Letting Go), the fun-loving Chuck Steinberg (Austin Zajur – Fist Fight, Kidding) and the outsider that nobody knows anything about Ramon Morales (Michael Garza – Wayward Pines, Timeless)who find themselves in a world of paranormal trouble after trying to out-run the town’s resident bully – Tommy (Austin Abrams – Paper Towns, Gangster Squad) after a Halloween prank goes badly wrong.

While trying to hide, and in a bid to impress Ramon, Stella leads the group into the ‘haunted house’ the house where it is alleged that Sarah Bellows (Kathleen Pollard – The Shape Of Water, The Handmaid’s Tale) killed a number of the town’s children a few years earlier. Sadly for the friends and Chuck’s sister Ruth (Natalie Ganzhorn – Make It Pop, Wet Bum) visiting the house makes them part of a series of stories that could cost them their lives.

The most intriguing part of the film is that while it is supposed to be a film aimed for teenagers director Andre Ovredal (Trollhunter, The Autopsy Of Jane Doe) gives the film a darker edge that makes a lot more interesting for an older audience as well. Where the film works well though is that it doesn’t fall into any of the mistakes that It Chapter Two did. The team of screenwriters which includes the legendary Guillermo del Toro (Pan’s Labyrinth, Hellboy) have made the key central characters likeable which instantly means the audience are barracking for them to live when the horror starts. The team have also carefully chosen which stories from the original novels to use and the result is an interesting collection of ‘horrors’ that in no way feel like a group of short stories put together to make a larger story. The only weakness is at times that the ‘horrors’ at hand don’t always seem to mirror the fear or nightmare that the character it relates to has as well as it could have done.

Given the creative minds of Del Toro and Ovredal coming together for this film there is little wonder that the horror and fantasy aspects of this film look so good. The ‘creatures’ and horrors that are seen throughout the film do have a real Pan’s Labyrinth feel and look to them. It’s these horrors that also seem more ‘scary’ than what you would expect in a film aimed at teenagers. The end result though is a film that will also be enjoyed by adults rather than films like Goosebumps that are more suited to teenagers. It also means that sequences like the Scarecrow sequence and the scenes in the mental hospital and Police Station are going to stick in the minds of the audience a lot longer than many of them would have expected them to.

The young cast also put in great performances. Zoe Margaret Colletti leads the way with a performance that is much more mature than her years would suggest. In a challenging role Colletti is a real stand-out and it is obvious that she has a great career ahead of her. Her character goes through a range of emotions from sheer fear to worry about the relationship that she has with her father and the young actress doesn’t skip a beat no matter what situation her character is put in. She is well supported by Michael Garza who really announces himself as an actor to watch while veteran actor Gil Bellows (The Shawshank Redemption, Patriot) also brings his A-Game to the film.

Creepily spectacular Scary Stories To Tell In The Dark is a throwback to films like Jeepers Creepers and Gremlins, films that were aimed for teenagers but had more of a horror side than most films aimed at that age-group. On reflection we should have expected something special when the minds of del Toro and Ovredal came together but I don’t think any of us expected something as enjoyable as this.

 

 

 

 

Average Subculture Rating:

 

 

IMDB Rating:  Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark (2019) on IMDb

 

Other Subculture Entertainment Scary Stories To Tell In The Dark Reviews:

Nil.

 

Trailer:

Hotel Transylvania

Summary: Dracula, who operates a high-end resort away from the human world, goes into overprotective mode when a boy discovers the resort and falls for the count s teen-aged daughter.

Year: 2012

Australian Cinema Release Date: 20th September, 2012

Australian DVD Release Date: 17th January, 2013

Country: USA

Director: Genndy Tartaovsky

Screenwriter: Peter Baynham, Todd Durham (story), Dan Hageman (story), Kevin Hageman (story), Robert Smigel

Cast: Steve Buscemi (Wayne (voice)), Fran Drescher (Eunice (voice)), Selena Gomez (Mavis (voice)), CeeLo Green (Murray (voice)), Kevin James (Frankenstein (voice)), Jon Lovitz (Quasimodo (voice)), Andy Samberg (Jonathan (voice)), Adam Sandler (Dracula (voice)), Jackie Sandler (Martha (voice)), Sadie Sandler (Winnie/Young Mavis (voice)), Molly Shannon (Wanda (voice)), Robert Smigel (Fake Dracula/Marty (voice)), David Spade (Griffin (voice))

Runtime: 91 mins

Classification:PG

Dave Griffiths’s ‘Hotel Transylvania’ Review: 

To read Dave’s review of ‘Hotel Transylvania’ review please check the Helium Entertainment Channel

Other Subculture Media Reviews of ‘Hotel Transylvania′: Nil.

Rating: 2.5/5

IMDB Rating: Hotel Transylvania (2012) on IMDb