JUMPCUT’s Top 10 Films Of 2018

As our 2018 movie window closes, and another one for 2019 is ready to burst open.

Taking a look back over the last 12 months of film and remembering all those big blockbusters, indie treasures and specialist cinema debuts are one thing, but narrowing them all down to just ten of the best is something else.

The staff at JumpCut Online locked themselves away from social media to draw up their own personal ‘Top 1O’. From that, each nominated film was awarded points (1st = 10, 2nd = 9 etc) until a definitive list was formed.

Ladies and gentlemen, for your debating pleasure, here is that list of the JumpCut Online Top 10 of 2018 in ascending order, based on UK release dates.


1

#10 – A Star Is Born
[dir. Bradley Cooper]

Jack (Bradley Cooper), a washed-up, alcoholic musician helps young singer Ally (Lady GaGa) find fame with her natural talent. But his demons threaten to send his career and even his life into a into a downward spiral from which there may be no return…

“The first half of the movie may hit some beats you’ll likely expect, but the second half will knock you for six, diving deep into the aftermath of lovesick decisions, all before reaching a devastating conclusion. Despite the pain and the many, many tears, this is a film that demands an immediate revisit as soon as the credits roll. Cooper has landed a masterpiece on his first go. You could say, a star is born.” – Cameron Frew

 

 

1

#9- You Were Never Really Here
[dir. Lynne Ramsay]

Joe (Joaquin Phoenix) is a traumatized gun-for-hire who is unafraid of violence. When a job spins out of control, Joe’s nightmares overtake him as a conspiracy is uncovered leading to what may be his death trip or his awakening…

“Truly edge of your seat stuff, and whilst the comparisons with ‘Taxi Driver’ kind of write themselves, it is still amazing on its own merit. Joaquin Phoenix gives an electric, and possibly career-best performance…this is one of the most genuinely thrilling films in a long time, and one which packs a mean punch into a relatively short space. An explosive, and unmissable film.”Sarah Buddery

 

 

1

#8 – Avengers: Infinity War
[dirs. Joe & Anthony Russo]

Earth’s mightiest heroes, The Avengers, must reach out to their allies in order to unite and stop Thanos (Josh Brolin), a powerful warlord intent on acquiring the Infinity Stones and using them to wipe out half of all beings in the galaxy and change things forever…

“At its best is epic, emotional and very, very shocking. It has impressive set pieces and of course it’s very funny. The few faults it does have are going to be down purely to the viewer. A knowledge of all that has happened before is essential. This is not the film for newbies….overall this was worth the wait.”Dave Curtis

 

 

1

#7 – Spider-Man: Into The Spider-Verse
[dirs. Bob Persichetti, Peter Ramsey]

Young teenager Miles Morales is involved in a freak accident and becomes Spider-Man. When the evil Kingpin creates a powerful machine that blends alternate dimensions, he crosses paths with five Spider-People from other dimensions who must work together and save all of their worlds…

“It’s a universal story that can be loved by everyone, filled with beautifully touching moments for both comic book and non-comic book fans alike, great laughs, and some pretty great music. This movie really showcases what minds like Steve Ditko and Stan Lee saw in these characters and what they wanted to express; a mask is a mask, but what really matters is who is underneath it – and that could be anyone.”Fernando Andrade

 

1

#6 – The Shape Of Water
[dir. Guillermo del Toro]

At a top secret research facility in 1960s America, Elisa, (Sally Hawkins) a lonely janitor, forms a unique relationship with an amphibious creature (Doug Jones) that is being held in captivity by the brutal Richard Strickland (Michael Shannon) who wants to unlock super-human secrets to use against America’s enemies…

“Utterly magical in every sense of the word, and “more” than what you could wish for in all conceivable ways….with incredible performances, absolutely stunning visuals (special nod to the underwater scenes which are totally breathtaking), masterful direction, and a unique and memorable story, ‘The Shape of Water’ deserves to be looked back on with the same fondness and reverence that ‘Pan’s Labyrinth’ is. A modern masterpiece, and a truly spectacular film.”Sarah Buddery

 

 

1

#5 – First Man
[dir. Damien Chazelle]

American astronaut Neil Armstrong (Ryan Gosling) and his wife Janet (Claire Foy) must deal with pressure at work and at home when he is offered a historic NASA space mission; to become the first man to walk on the Moon. But pre-flight tests and training don’t come easy, with many highs and lows that push Neil, and the mission, almost to breaking point…

“Stunning. It’s an astounding achievement for a young director on the winning streak of his life; it has two award-worthy leading performances; it’s gorgeous to look at; it’s amazing to listen to; and it’s an utterly overwhelming experience. See it on the biggest, loudest screen you can. Chazelle, you’ve done it again.”Rhys Bowen-Jones

 

 

1

#4 – Phantom Thread
[dir. Paul Thomas Anderson]

Set in 1950s London, Reynolds Woodcock (Daniel Day-Lewis) is a renowned dressmaker whose fastidious life is disrupted by a young, strong-willed woman, Alma (Vicky Krieps), who becomes his muse and lover and who turns his view on life, and himself, upside down…

“When it comes down to it, ‘Phantom Thread’ is surprisingly quotable, cinematically very pleasing and a joy to watch. The cast all share strong chemistry and with a little help from Johnny Greenwood, Paul Thomas Anderson has created another excellent film which sits very nicely with his back catalogue. If this is Daniel Day-Lewis’ last ever film, then I will happily watch his old films with a smile on my face…but I do hope he changes his mind. He is just too good. He has loads left in the tank.”Dave Curtis

 

 

1

#3 – Hereditary
[dir. Ari Aster]

After the family matriarch passes away, a grieving family is haunted by tragic and disturbing occurrences, and begin to unravel dark secrets. The mother, Annie (Toni Collette), begins to see her family slow fall apart, and while she is the only one who can hold them together, the supernatural powers surrounding them become too strong to contain…

“There are clear inspirations from classics such as Rosemary’s Baby and The Omen (and even 2011’s much underrated Kill List). And like those fondly remembered shockers, Aster’s film isn’t perfect – it’s a little overlong, occasionally fumbling around the good stuff towards the end… An outstandingly horrifying achievement from a debut filmmaker, Hereditary is a classic in the making, built on rock-solid, terrifying, atmospheric terror.”Cameron Frew

 

 

1

#2 – Roma
[dir. Alfonso Cuarón]

Set in the early 1970s in Mexico City, we follows the life of live-in housekeeper Cleodegaria “Cleo” (Yalitza Aparicio) to an upper-class family. It tells the story of situations; the life Cleo and her family face in and around Mexico City at a time when living and providing was nothing but a struggle for most…

“Visually striking, aurally immersive and emotionally captivating, ‘Roma’ is undoubtedly one of the finest films of the year and arguably Cuarón’s best film. It is certainly his most personal film, and the labour of love that this film represents permeates through every single frame. With exceptional performances, beautiful imagery, and the finest sound design in recent years, ‘Roma’ isn’t just a film which deserves to be seen on the big screen, it is one which deserves to be heard on the big screen. It bears repeating: ‘Roma’ is a masterpiece.” – Sarah Buddery

 

 

1

#1 – Mission: Impossible – Fallout
[dir. Christopher McQuarrie]

IMF agent Ethan Hunt (Tom Cruise) and his allies must race against time to find a deadly crime syndicate intent on throwing the world into chaos. CIA agent August Walker (Henry Cavill) is also on hand to make sure IMF can do the job in hand when it becomes clear there is a mole within their ranks…

“Not only is ‘Fallout’ fun to watch, but it is also technically brilliant. From the score to the cinematography and the stunt work, it’s amazing to think about the hours of hard work the crew have had to put in to make a movie like this. They are the real MVP’s. I salute them…It is a proper popcorn flick which only has a few minor flaws. To think this franchise has been going for 22 years and it still feels this fresh and new is a testament to the director and star. I can’t imagine what they have in store for Mission Impossible 7. Surely only outer space beckons now.” – Dave Curtis


So there we have it. Agree or not, that’s the consensus for the Top 10 best films of 2018 from a team who, between them, have probably watched all that has been on offer.

Films that narrowly missed out a spot include ‘Beast’, ‘Black Panther’, ‘Isle Of Dogs’, ‘A Prayer Before Dawn’ and ‘Bohemian Rhapsody’.

We can’t wait to do it all again next year for the barnstorming 2019 offerings ahead!

JUMPCUT’s Top 10 Most Anticipated Films of 2019

2018 was, by most people’s standards, a solid year for cinema. From Blockbuster titans such as Avengers: Infinity War and Black Panther to silent, independent treasures like Roma and Leave No Trace; this was the year that appeased to the tastes of casual filmgoers and avid cinephiles alike. Thankfully, 2019 is shaping up to be just as good a year, perhaps even stronger; boasting a collection of projects destined for greatness.

We at JUMPCUT have come together to collect our most anticipated films that 2019 has to offer, and boy, are we excited. So without further ado, here are our top 10 most eagerly anticipated movies of 2019.

This piece will also include a special addition from Fiona Underhill covering her most anticipated films that will premiere at Sundance in 2019…


JC-ARTICLE-IMAGE

#10 – Us [dir. Jordan Peele]

In 2017, directorial debutant Jordan Peele, known by many as one of the members of comedy genius duo Key and Peele, stunned the cinematic world with Get Out – a harrowing, satirical tale of racial discrimination in its most barbaric form.

2 years later he is set to return to our screens with Us, a horror-thriller promised to be a spiritual sequel to Peele’s predecessor. Boasting a diverse cast including the likes of Elisabeth Moss, Lupita Nyong’o and Winston Duke, we can expect another chilling tale dealing with similar societal issues as seen in Get Out. Although plot details about his new project are being kept under wraps, a new trailer is set to be released on Christmas day – and what better way to spend your festive season than to be terrified stiff by the genius of Jordan Peele?

Written by Corey Hughes

JC-ARTICLE-IMAGE 

#9 – Captain Marvel [dir. Anna Boden; Ryan Fleck]

When Thanos snapped his herculean fingers at the end of Avengers: Infinity War, all seemed lost. Half of the universe’s population was eradicated at the sound of the snap; our beloved heroes dissolving to dust in the wind. But there could be a way out. A way to defeat Thanos once and for all. Enter Captain Marvel.

Hailed by many as Marvel’s most powerful superhero, Captain Marvel makes her long-awaited feature debut in her titular origin story set to release early next year. Stepping into the esteemed boots of Marvel’s heroine is Brie Larson, a name alone worthy of generating great excitement. The Oscar-winning actress is joined by MCU newcomers Jude Law, Ben Mendelsohn and Gemma Chan, and also by regulars Samuel L. Jackson as (now two-eyed) Nick Fury and Lee Pace as the villainous Ronan – a cast not to be missed.

There’s a lot to be excited for here, least of all its contribution to fuelling the excitement for Avengers Endgame; another eagerly anticipated release in 2019 that will undoubtedly be featured later on in this list…

Written by Corey Hughes

JC-ARTICLE-IMAGE

#8 – IT: Chapter 2 [dir. Andy Muschietti] 

2017 was a big year for the franchise and, as you would expect, the worldwide box office was dominated by Marvel, Star Wars, Wonder Woman and Fast and Furious. One of the unexpected hits of the year came in the form of a child-eating clown in Andres Mushcietti’s IT. Loved by critics and audiences alike, IT stormed to a worldwide box office of $700m and proved that there is still a place in the market for blockbuster horror, despite the surge in excellent indie horror films in recent years.

It is no surprise then, that a sequel will hit our screens in September 2019. The film will see Jessica Chastain team up with Muschietti again after working together on Mama. Bill Skarsgard will reprise his role as Pennywise and James McAvoy is the other standout name signed on to star alongside the returning kids. Exact plot details are still being kept quiet, but if we use Stephen King’s novel and the 1990 mini-series as a template, we can expect to see Pennywise return to Derry 27 years on from the events of IT and what’s left of the Losers Club reunite in an attempt to rid their hometown of this evil once and for all.

Written by Nick Deal

JC-ARTICLE-IMAGE

#7 – Once Upon a Time in Hollywood [dir. Quentin Tarantino]

Only Quentin Tarantino, known for his provocatively visual style of filmmaking, could make a movie based loosely on the Charles Manson killings and cast such a charming ensemble of actors. With the likes of Leonardo DiCpario (returning from his Oscar win in The Revenant), Margot Robbie, Kurt Russell and Brad Pitt among the selection, Once Upon a Time in Hollywood seems too good to miss, but when Tarantino himself describes DiCaprio and Pitt as “the most exciting star dynamic duo since Robert Redford and Paul Newman”, this is a cinematic experience that will go down in history.

But for many, the return of Tarantino is enough to get butts in seats. Since his initial declaration that he will not be making more than ten feature films, Once Upon a Time in Hollywood marks his ninth; destined to be another milestone in his illustrious career thus far. Has he really only got one more film left in him after this? We sure hope not.

Written by Corey Hughes

JC-ARTICLE-IMAGE

#6 – Glass [dir. M. Night Shyamalan]

It’s fair to say that M. Night Shyamalan, deemed by many as the master of the plot twist (sometimes at the expense of plausibility), has had a bit of a topsy-turvy career. With undeniable classics under his belt like The Sixth Sense and Signs, he’s also got some stinkers tucked away too; The Happening and The Last Airbender, yes, I’m looking at you. But with the warm critical and audience receptions for his last outing, Split, it seems that the inconsistent director is back on the right track.

Since Bruce Willis’ shock cameo in the final moments of Split, Shyamalan teased a joint-universe within his own films – the fact that the events of his last project co-exist within the same universe of Unbreakable; a trademark twist. The upcoming Glass is the sequel of all sequels, bringing together James McAvoy, Bruce Willis and Samuel L. Jackson’s characters into one explosive feature. You can see why it’s featured on our list.

Written by Corey Hughes

JC-ARTICLE-IMAGE

#5 – Godzilla: King of the Monsters [dir. Michael Dougherty]

Gareth Edwards’ Godzilla left some people wanting more. It focused more on the human element, it showed the action from a human perspective, looking up at the kaiju as they wrecked skyscrapers. At one point, Godzilla is shown in full for the first time, and the film cuts away to show the ensuing fight on a small news broadcast in the background. I get the problems people have with it. But, with that said, when Edwards shows us the action, it is epic. In every possible way, it is fantastic, it’s weighty, it’s brutal, it’s how you’d expect three 300ft tall monsters fighting would look. We want more of that. Less human, more monster.

Enter Godzilla: King of the Monsters. Everything about this long-awaited sequel (5 years on from its predecessor) points to it being bigger. It will reintroduce classic monsters from the Godzilla canon in Mothra, Rodan, and King Ghidorah, and pit them all against each other and Godzilla in a winner-takes-the-Earth battle of the millennium. Add in some exciting new actors to the cast like Millie Bobby Brown, Vera Farmiga, Charles Dance, and Bradley Whitford, you have a film that’s worth your attention beyond just the kaiju fights.

If you haven’t had the chance yet, the newest trailer is essential viewing as it shows these 3 in mind-blowing action, and it shows the beginnings of a mammoth clash between Godzilla and King Ghidorah, Godzilla’s giant 3-headed arch-nemesis. It is going to be a film that needs to be seen on the biggest, loudest screen you can find. I’ll be there opening night.

Written by Rhys Bowen Jones

JC-ARTICLE-IMAGE

#4 – Joker [dir. Todd Phillips]

Not since Christopher Nolan’s Dark Knight trilogy – without being remotely persuaded by Wonder Woman’s origin – has DC zapped me enough to rival the enthusiasm I have for the mega Marvel universe. Nor did Jared Leto come close to re-establishing the Joker as his own like Mark Hamill and Heath Ledger did before. But a new circus is in town to pave the way for a fresh batch of DC origins led by The Hangover director Todd Phillips, who’s ready to unravel the mind of a serious, but not so serious clown.

Joaquin Phoenix – who we’ve already seen sprinting through Manhattan in full retro-clown costume – is Arthur Fleck, portrayed as a failing comedian who turns criminal amidst his misfortune. Set in the 1980s, this vision will follow the storyline of Alan Moore’s The Killing Joke that should be flawless material for a raw and grounding backstory that’s set to be a stand-alone project. With promising support from Robert de Niro and confirmed appearances from Thomas Wayne, a young Bruce, trusty butler Alfred, and even Arkham Asylum, Phillips will keep Joker connected to Batman treasures in vintage, indie style.

Rumoured to be titled DC Dark or DC Black, Joker will be crucial in reinvigorating a distinct line of DC movies that show promise of being purely character driven – hinted by its low budget of $55 million and a likely R rating – that will combat the franchise’s CGI heavy past. The Joker’s history is ambiguous – put clearly in his Killing Joke quote “If I’m going to have a past, I prefer it to be multiple choice” – putting creative freedom at an all-time high when building his foundation. 2019 should confidently host an intriguing version of his dark and twisted making.

Written by Jo Craig

JC-ARTICLE-IMAGE

#3 – John Wick: Chapter 3 [dir. Chad Stahelski]

 There are three certainties in life: death, taxes, and not to piss off John Wick.

Keanu Reeve’s John Wick has become somewhat of a contemporary action hero to match the likes of Jason Bourne and James Bond, a darkened, hardened and relentless figure whose reputation strikes fear into anyone who knows his name. Chapter 3 sees the culmination of Chad Stahelski’s John Wick trilogy, its two predecessors setting the benchmark for the modern action flick with its reliance on long-shots and exuberant fight sequences to demonstrate Wick’s fearless physicality.

The Wick films also lay the foundations for an interesting mythological backdrop, particularly its realm of assassins who roam mysterious Continental hotels across the globe. It will be interesting to see how these mysteries play out in the forthcoming film, but I think I speak for everyone when I say that we’re all here just to see Keanu Reeves annihilate his enemies in the most stylistic and aesthetically stimulating way possible. Especially from horseback. Orgasmic…

Written by Corey Hughes

JC-ARTICLE-IMAGE

#2 – Avengers: Endgame [dir. The Russo Brothers] 

“Oh god” uttered Captain America, only to be followed by a hauntingly melancholic suite and a mightily satisfied smile from the Great Titan. When that shot cut to black, certainly in my screening, you could feel an unparalleled devastation in the air. Comic book filmgoers have been treated to darkness before, but this was new. Sudden, harsh, genocidal; this was the good guy’s worst primal fear – the bad guy winning. Some say it’s cheap, some say it’s inconsequential, I say it’s genius. How else are we fully to believe the universe-spanning power of Thanos than if he doesn’t get the chance to click those gold-plated, stone-garnished fingers?

Fitting then that the trailer for the climatic Avengers film, Endgame, is ruthlessly sombre. The loss, the agony, the powerlessness; this is a different kind of superhero movie. More urgent, more emotional. “Thanos did exactly what he said he was going to do. He wiped out 50% of all living creatures.”

It’s a modern cinema wonder the Russo’s pulled off Infinity War, but Endgame is different. Endgame is in the purest sense of the word, an event. The decade-spanning culmination of the world-building, victories and losses we as viewers have invested in.

How is it all going to pan out? How will Tony Stark survive? Will he and Cap see each other again? How did Ant-Man make it out the Quantum Realm? How will they save the day? The inevitability of heroes returning doesn’t dampen the tension, it elicits further compassion. We want to push our arms through the screen to give our remaining Avengers a pat on the back, just to say, “It’ll be okay”. But there’s more than every chance it won’t be – The Russo’s aren’t chumps. The question that’s leaving everyone’s trembling lips is, “Who’s going to (actually) die?”.

Depending on your age growing up, your ‘big series’ varies. For some, it’ll be Star Wars, or Indiana Jones, or for later generations, Harry Potter. But in terms of scope, consistency and vision, the Marvel Cinematic Universe is the grand-daddy of the blockbuster franchises. Make no qualms; Endgame is, arguably, the biggest movie of all time. My excitement couldn’t be contained within any Infinity Stone – many, many, many tears will be shed on April 26, 2019. See you there.

Written by Cameron Frew

JC-ARTICLE-IMAGE

#1Star Wars – Episode IX [dir. JJ. Abrams]

Topping our list is the as of yet untitled Star Wars Episode IX, a film with perhaps larger expectations on its shoulders than it probably deserves. It’s no secret that preceding instalment The Last Jedi split audiences down the middle, meaning Episode IX is the rare blockbuster that, to leave the legacy it hopes to, needs to both satisfy those still on board with the saga and revitalise the interests of those who fell off over the past year. It’ll be a gargantuan feat, so here’s hoping JJ Abrams is up for the task.

What can we expect from Episode IX itself, though? Well, that’s hard to say. The film is being kept a secret as you’d expect for a trilogy-concluding blockbuster of this magnitude, and if there’s one thing absolutely no one can deny about The Last Jedi, it’s that it shook the saga up to such an extent that predicting what comes next is entirely impossible. Will Rey complete her Jedi training and fulfil her destiny? Will the Resistance rise up and defeat the First Order? What state with the currently unstable First Order even be in when we rejoin the story? And, number one on my mind, what fate awaits Kylo Ren as his journey of self-discovery reaches its big conclusion? The one thing we do know, though? None of us are going to want to miss this one.

Written by Ryan Morris

What films are you most excited for in 2019? Be sure to keep in touch and let us know!

The Highly Anticipated First Trailer For ‘Avengers: ENDGAME’ Has Arrived!

Directed by: Joe & Anthony Russo
Starring: Robert Downey Jr, Chris Evans, Mark Ruffalo, Scarlett Johannson, Elizabeth Olsen, Paul Bettany, Chris Hemsworth, Tom Hiddleston, Chadwick Boseman, Letitia Wright, Danai Gurira, Sebastian Stan, Winston Duke, Josh Brolin, Chris Pratt, Zoe Saldana, Tom Holland, Paul Rudd, Benedict Cumberbatch, Vi Diesel, Pom Klementieff, Jeremy Renner, Jon Favreau, Benedict Wong, Sean Gunn, Anthony Mackie, Don Cheadle, Dave Bautista, Bradley Cooper

‘Marvel: Ultimate Alliance 3’ Announced As Switch Exclusive

Over the last few days there’d been rumours that we were finally going to get some details on the Untitled Avengers Project that Marvel announced some time ago now. However, what we’ve received instead is our first look at Marvel: Ultimate Alliance 3: The Black Order – which will release exclusively on Nintendo Switch.

The first trailer offers us a look at just some of the playable characters, which includes Iron Man, Spider-Man, Wolverine, the Guardians fo the Galaxy and lots more.

The game is being developed by Team Ninja and is set to release next year.

 

Ant-Man & The Wasp

Year: 2018
Directed by: Peyton Reed
Starring: Paul Rudd, Evangeline Lilly, Michael Douglas, Michelle Pfeiffer, Michael Peña, Walton Goggins, Laurence Fishburne, Hannah John-Kamen, Abby Ryder Forston

WRITTEN BY CHRIS GELDERD

This 2018 American superhero film is the sequel to 2015’s ‘Ant-Man’ and the twentieth film in the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU). It is directed by Peyton Reed and stars Paul Rudd, Evangeline Lilly, Michael Peña, Michael Douglas, Hannah John-Kamen, Walton Goggins, Laurence Fishburne, Abby Ryder Fortson, Randall Park and Michelle Pfeiffer.

One of the most under-rated Marvel superheroes launched in 2015 with his big-screen debut, bringing together a solid cast and adding more pieces to the MCU puzzle. In ‘Captain America: Civil War’, Ant-Man stole the show by becoming Giant-Man in an all to brief but highly entertaining appearance. Now it’s time for the inevitable sequel; one that not only surpasses the original, but lets core Marvel values shine brightly in a franchise currently clouded by recent doom and gloom.

Grab your popcorn and kick back. It’s time to have some fun once again.

This film belongs to Paul Rudd and Evangeline Lilly – it’s a film about partnership, about family, friendship and being. It’s ‘Ant-Man & The Wasp‘; equal heading, equal footing on marketing and everything in-between. Rudd doesn’t need to try too hard to be humorous, but he still manages to do it in a very heartfelt and endearing way, making Scott Lang stand out as one of the Marvel heroes simply wearing a super suit and uses his heart, head, and honour to fight evil, rather than gifted God-like superpowers.

On the other side of this duo, Evangeline Lilly holds her own across the whole film. She is ballsy, brainy and badass.  She’s a real humane hero who doesn’t become a damsel in distress. She clearly takes care of herself when the heat is turned up and, along with Rudd, shows some real heart and emotion that pushes the core themes forward. Rudd and Lily are equal, neither have greater ability than the other when it comes down to fighting the good fight, and none of them are there as a spare tool. It’s equality, and then some, and so much more enjoyable for it with them being together. The trailer used lyrics It takes two to make a thing go right. It takes two to make it outta’ sight.” Never a truer phrase in this case.

With a stellar supporting cast including veterans Michael Douglas (who has even more to do this time around thankfully) and the amusing guilty-pleasure comedy of Michael Peña who all add to the story rather than be expendable, new faces also add to the overall quality. Laurence Fishburne helps expand character relations and morals, Walton Goggins as our charming black market bad guy for hire and Michelle Pfeiffer as the original Wasp and wife of Hank.

Young Abby Ryder Forston as Cassie, Lang’s daughter, shines with as much warmth and wit as Rudd in her scenes and is a joy to see on screen. But it is Hannah John-Kamen who strikes a chord as Ava Starr – our ‘Ghost’ – who has a molecular instability thanks to reasons left to be discovered. She’s pushed as the villain of the piece, but is she? Director Peyton Reed tiptoes towards MCU cliché in her goals and actions, but each time pulls back from the brink to give us something a little different and unexpected. Her story is a sad one and while she is highly dangerous in what she does and why, it’s the journey she takes mirroring the heroes that add some great moments and thrills, thrills that come thick and fast, and help define “popcorn entertainment”.

We have a brilliantly choreographed car chase that involve trucks, motorbikes, Pez dispensers and Hot Wheels racers. We have a hotel lobby and kitchen fight, once more perfectly choreographed, that showcases Lily in full force. We also have eye-popping ‘Doctor Strange’-esque quantum realm travel and bone-crunching hand to hand combat. The whole pace of the movie is perfect, and the action compliments each development and progresses everything and everyone without being pointless.

There isn’t the need for city-wide destruction and mass genocide here. It’s a family-friendly film, but one that harkens a little more to classic Marvel themes before the stakes were as high as they could be and it felt things had peaked. ‘Ant-Man & The Wasp’ takes the threat of Thanos out of the equation for a couple of hours and reduces all pointless cameos and Avenger interaction to give Ant-Man both a fair stand-alone sequel but also presenting new ideas for the future of the franchise.

The humour is on top form where you will find yourself chuckling along a lot of the time without even knowing it thanks to the snappy character exchanges. Yet, fear not, the movie isn’t stupid nor does it rely on infantile humour to get the laughs. There is a lot of heart to this film – the narrative is more about family and faith over Infinity Stones and nuclear wars – so you will certainly be able to invest in the characters, what they do and why.

Another strong reason this film seems to make great leaps forward to Marvel is the visual effects that stand amongst the best in the current franchise. There is no need for constant green screen and masses of CGI locations thanks to keeping things Earth based with practical sets and effects. The stand-out moments are the shrinking and enlarging of Ant-Man and Wasp. Split second transformations in the middle of breakneck fights are seamless and fluid, with the environment and characters reacting accordingly. Nothing feels jarred or loose. It’s tight, imaginative, entertaining and exciting. And when Ant-Man loses control of his suit’s regulator, there’s just more good fun to be had.

Ant-Man & The Wasp’ doesn’t try to compete with the juggernaut of ‘Infinity War’, it instead does the wise thing and distances itself far from it. If the bar to judge all MCU films hinges on ‘IW’, then you’ll find you miss out on these smaller gems that expand the forgotten heroes and their own stories.

However, for the ones who are worried, then don’t be. Events of ‘Infinity War’ are referenced in the film. How? When? You’ll have to find out for yourself and watch that Marvel cloud of doom and gloom smother the care-free fun you just had.

CHRIS’ RATING:

5

Weekend BO Report: A Blistering June Weekend Sees ‘Fallen Kingdom’ In A World Of Its Own

Written by Dapo Olowu

On the biggest June Box Office weekend in domestic history, it was ‘Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom’ that snatched first place with a remarkable $148m 3-day haul. Early tracking, like with ‘Jurassic World’ in 2015, saw a much more conservative $130m figure being touted by industry analysts, as well as yours truly. But, it’s becoming increasingly clear that the franchise relies heavily on on-the-day walk-ups – pre-orders and heavy anticipation just isn’t the audience preference here. This means that the duo of films, led by Chris Pratt and Bryce Dallas Howard, have become Universal’s first and second highest openings of all time (with the former pulling in a then-record $208.8m), showing that audiences in the U.S. still have a mighty appetite for the Dinosaur franchise. The same can be said for International viewers, as ‘Fallen Kingdom’ now boasts a mighty $715m global gross and is looking at finishing in the region of $1.2bn worldwide.

Flying in for a second place finish this weekend is ‘Incredibles 2’, Pixar’s record-breaking sequel. Unfortunately, it cut our dreams of a $100m 1-2 in the Box Office short, bringing in a smaller but still solid, $80.3m. The interesting bit here is the similarities in its weekend drop to both ‘Infinity War’ and ‘Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2’, whose 55.5% falls almost mirror ‘Incredibles 2’s 56%, indicating that the Brad Bird-directed hit may end up performing more like an archetypal superhero movie than a family-oriented Pixar animation. A box office run like ‘Infinity War’ would earn ‘Incredibles 2’ a domestic finish of $475m, while a run like ‘GotG2’ leaves the film at $485.9m. Disney and Pixar will be optimistic for a stronger performance, though, as the summer period should see it beat ‘Finding Dory’s record of $486.3m. Internationally, ‘Incredibles 2’ fared especially well in China, earning a Pixar-record $21.2m in the region.

A gross of $11.5m leaves Sandra Bullock’s ‘Ocean’s 8’ on a domestic total of $100.3m, and a worldwide gross of $171.6m – a fantastic return after just 3 weeks. As the film closes in on $200m, and critical reaction stands to be mostly positive, a possible sequel is looking more and more likely. True-story comedy ‘Tag’ has managed to take in $8.3m to bring its domestic total up to $30.4m – on-track with last month’s Melissa McCarthy comedy ‘Life of the Party’. The former will hope to better the $52.1m domestic total that the latter ended up on, as ‘Tag’s inflated $28m production cost requires a leggier Box Office run.

Deadpool 2’ triumphed over ‘Solo’ this weekend, earning $5.3m compared to the latter’s $4.5m, moving past ‘It’ as the 3rd biggest R-rated global hit (behind ‘The Matrix Reloaded’ and ‘Deadpool’). ‘Solo’ was hit a little hard by ‘Fallen Kingdom’, dropping 55% from last week’s gross. On the other hand, ‘Hereditary’ held steady after losing 1,000 cinemas, earning $3.6m  and leaving it just $2m short of $50m globally. The A24 film will be confident at landing somewhere close to $60m worldwide; a fantastic return for the studio with a patchy Box Office record to date.

Sony action film, ‘Superfly’, dropped by 50% from last weekend to gross $3.4m – a figure similar to Tyrese Gibson thriller, ‘Waist Deep’, from 2006, which also saw a $3.4m second weekend. While the latter’s $21.3m domestic total looks reachable for ‘Superfly’, it’ll be a disappointing run for the film that cost $16m. Finally, ‘Infinity War’ earned $2.6m in its final weekend in the top 10, while limited-release documentary ‘Won’t You Be My Neighbour’ brought in $1.8m for 10th spot.

As worldwide audiences can’t seem to get enough of the ‘Jurassic’ franchise, where do you the current film ending up? Will it break into the top ten biggest of all time? Let us know your thoughts – we’re on Instagram and Twitter at @JUMPCUT_ONLINE.

Untitled

Weekend BO Predictions: On A Potentially Record-Breaking Weekend, Will ‘Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom’ Open With A Roar?

Written by Dapo Olowu

It’s sequel season in the Box Office sphere, with ‘Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom’ following in the footsteps of ‘Ocean’s 8’ and record-breaking ‘Incredibles 2’ in its attempt to top the charts this weekend, in a live-action record 4,475 cinemas. The follow-up to Colin Trevorrow’s 2015 continuation of the ‘Jurassic Park’ franchise (which surprisingly broke the then-opening weekend record with $208.8m) looks to follow in the footsteps of last week’s ‘Incredibles 2’ and provide mass appeal. The problem is, Pixar sequel completely smashed expectations and performed brilliantly across the four main audience quadrants, providing men, women, alongside over and under-25s alike worth quality viewing. This then led to an animated record-breaking $187.2m opening for the film, practically ensuring it’s future Box Office profits. ‘Jurassic World 2’, on the other hand, has a 53% rotten rating on the Tomatometer, and is the sequel not many Americans seemingly asked for, much like ‘Solo’ some weeks ago.

Fears of this being another ‘Solo’ are quite extreme however; ‘Jurassic World 2’ has already made $450m in International markets without the film even reaching U.S. cinemas, and crossed over the $100m mark in China in its first 3 days. It aims to see a drop akin to ‘The Last Jedi’, which fell 13% from ‘The Force Awakens’ for a $220m opening. The same for ‘Jurassic World 2’ would give it a massive $181.7m domestic start, but without such a dedicated fanbase as ‘Star Wars’, even the most optimistic of analysts would roll their eyes at such a prediction. Therefore, I’m looking at ‘Rogue One’, which dropped by 37% from ‘The Force Awakens’. A similar fall from ‘Jurassic World’ would leave its sequel opening to $131m, and taking into account ‘Incredibles 2’s performance, we’re thinking ‘Jurassic World 2’ will hit $125m in its first 3 days. Fun fact: this is to be only the second time ever that a $100m opener has immediately followed another $100m opener in the next week, after ‘Pirates of the Caribbean 3’ followed ‘Shrek 3’ in 2007.

Looking to take advantage of ‘Jurassic World’s disappointing opening is ‘Incredibles 2’, which aims to make history by being the first film to ever make $100m or more in the same weekend as another. No two films have ever simultaneously achieved the feat on the same weekend; the closest this ever came was in 2015, when in a curious case of reverse fortune, Disney favourite ‘Inside Out’ opened to $90.4m during ‘Jurassic World’s second weekend (where it itself grossed $106.6m). ‘Incredibles 2’ would have to drop by 45.3% to reach $100m, and that’s where we’re hoping it reaches.

Next, is ‘Ocean’s 8’, and this continues to emulate ‘Ghostbusters’ with around a $10m 3rd weekend. Comedy ‘Tag’ would love to mirror ‘Game Night’s second weekend performance with a 38.8% drop, but will probably perform closer to ‘Neighbors 2’ and fall somewhere in the 50% region. A gross of $7.5m will be enough for fourth place, ahead of ‘Solo’, who will finally pass the $200m domestic total this weekend, for a gross of $6m, in-line with the performance of ‘Days of Future Past’. Closely trailing is ‘Deadpool 2’ with $5.6m, now reaching $700m worldwide and $300m domestically.

A24 horror ‘Hereditary’ continues its impressive run, and looks to earn $4.3m in the U.S. this weekend, leaving the film just $19m away from being A24’s biggest domestic hit, and close to making $50m globally. ‘Infinity War’ should come 8th with a gross of $3.8m, and finally ‘Superfly’ and ‘Adrift’ round off the top ten with $3.2m and $1.1m each.

Will ‘Jurassic World 2’ and ‘Incredibles 2’ make Box Office history, or will the latter fall just short of the $100m target? Let us know your thoughts on Instagram and Twitter – we’re at @JUMPCUT_ONLINE.

 

Untitled

Weekend BO Report: ‘Solo’ Continues To Crash But ‘Action Point’ Is The Real Catastrophe

 

Written by Dapo Olowu

A second weekend at the top of the Box Office charts was a certainty, barring a freak collapse, but ‘Solo’ still only crawled to the finish line with a total of $29.4m, a major 65% drop from 7 days ago. It fared a little better internationally, where it fell by only 47%, but brought in just $30.3m here for a global total of $264.4m. Remember, ‘Solo’ comes from the same family of films as ‘The Force Awakens’, that opened in the U.S. alone to $248m in 2015 – a number that ‘Solo’ won’t reach in its entire domestic run. The gross it will finally end on is up for debate. Its second weekend drop mirrored 2014s ‘X-Men: Days of Future Past’s 64% fall, but while the latter was able to nab a 2.58x opening weekend multiplier, the upcoming ‘Incredibles 2’ and ‘Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom’ will surely cut ‘Solo’s Box Office legs short. Could we see ‘Solo’ crash and burn at under $200m domestically? It’s looking more and more like reality as each day passes.

Deadpool 2’ is now just $2m away from a global gross of $600m, with still enough left in the tank to close in on $700m. The duo has confirmed themselves as the biggest R-rated franchise of all time, overtaking the ‘Fifty Shades’ trilogy’s $1.32bn worldwide gross, with $1.38bn. It’s a little difficult to ignore the diminishing returns here; ‘Deadpool 2’ is currently 11% behind its predecessor at the same point in its run, but with bucketloads of profit already assured, Fox won’t be too displeased. Its third weekend showed an interesting similarity to MCU films ‘Thor: Ragnarok’ and ‘Iron Man 2’; all three by the third weekend had/have domestic totals in the region of $250m. A finish nearing $310m for ‘Deadpool 2’ is thus likely, a fantastic return for the merc with the mouth, and for the studio willing to take the risk on the comic book hero.

The biggest new release of the weekend went to ‘Adrift’, which sailed steadily to an $11.6m total, in-line with our below-teen prediction on Friday. Its solid 70% on Rotten Tomatoes, and B on Cinemascore should give it the legs it needs to reach the shores of profitability, and it gets a further boost from the lack of any meaningful competition in the coming weeks. Still, the production cost of $35m, and heavily-skewed audience (69% of viewers were over 25), lands it in choppy waters with little room to grow. It’s a mixed-year for STX Entertainment thus far; ‘Gringo’ flopped with a $5m gross, whilst ‘I Feel Pretty’ and ‘Den of Thieves’ both performed decently, with over $70m each from $30m budgets. Its upcoming Mark Wahlberg shoot-em-up, ‘Mile 22’, and Melissa McCarthy comedy, ‘The Happytime Murders’, probably won’t buck the trend either.

Infinity War held on strong this weekend to bring in $10.5m, but the real story this comes from China, as it dropped only 25% this weekend for a total of $356.2m – the 3rd biggest Hollywood film in Chinese history. Its current global total is $1.97bn, and although $2bn is guaranteed, reaching ‘The Force Awakens’ $2.07bn total seems like a step too far. Fifth spot goes to ‘Book Club’, which again boasted the lowest drop of the weekend, by only falling by 30% to take home $7m. Even with potential competition in ‘Adrift’, the rom-com is comfortably over $50m globally at the moment with a clear schedule ahead.

Now for one of the biggest surprises of the weekend, ‘Upgrade’ smashed expectations by grossing $4.7m in its first three days – enough to be BH Tilt’s second biggest opener ever, and needing just a multiplier of 2.3x to become their biggest ever domestic hit. The sci-fi horror opened in under 1,500 cinemas but was able to boast the 4th best per-cinema average of the weekend, with $3,206. Both ‘Life of the Party’ andBreaking In’ continued their similar runs by bringing in $3.5m and $2.8m each, with domestic totals reaching $46.4m and $41.3m respectively.

No words can really describe just how badly Johnny Knoxville’s ‘Action Point’ did this weekend. It bombed, bringing in just $2.4m of a $19m budget. Far away from our hopeful $9m start, ‘Action Point’ suffered from the lack of advertising, 19% on Rotten Tomatoes (and C+ on Cinemascore), and no tie-in with the ‘Jackass’ franchise that launched Knoxville’s career. Paramount likely knew this would flop from a while back, and thus limited their exposure by spending as little as possible on promotion, which only raises the question: did they attempt to sell this to Netflix? Like they did with ‘Annihilation’ & ‘The Cloverfield Paradox’? The final film rounding off our top ten list was ‘Overboard’, which brought in $1.9m, just $170k off of ‘A Quiet Place’ in 11th.

Next weekend sees the horror ‘Hereditary’, crime thriller ‘Hotel Artemis’, and star-studded heist comedy ‘Oceans 8’ enter the picture. How will they get on against our current top ten? Let us know your thoughts on Twitter and Instagram – we’re at @JUMPCUT_ONLINE.

 

Rank Last Week Rank Film Total U.S. Gross Weekend Gross Weekend drop Jumpcut’s prediction Difference Week number
1 1 Solo: A Star Wars Story $149m $29.4m -65.2% $33m $3.6m 2
2 2 Deadpool 2 $254.5m $23.2m -46.7% $22m $1.2m 3
3 Adrift $11.6m $11.6m $12.5m $0.9m 1
4 3 Avengers: Infinity War $643m $10.5m -39.2% $9.4m $1.1m 6
5 4 Book Club $47.6m $7m -30.1% $7.3m $0.3m 3
6 Upgrade $4.7m $4.7m $3.8m $0.9m 1
7 5 Life of the Party $46.4m $3.5m -34.9% $3.6m $0.1m 4
8 6 Breaking In $41.3m $2.8m -34.4% $2.5m $0.3m 4
9 Action Point $2.4m $2.4m $9m $6.6m 1
10 8 Overboard $45.5m $1.9m -37.8% 5

 

 

 

Weekend BO Results: ‘Solo’ is DOA As ‘Infinity War’ Closes In On $2 Billion

Written by Dapo Olowu

If there was a lesson to be learned from ‘Solo’ bombing at the Box Office this weekend (and trust me, there are lessons), it’s that no franchise or property, however popular, is fully immune to disappointing returns. The late promotion, effects of a polarising ‘The Last Jedi’, mediocre reviews, poor release date, and a story that audiences never really asked for in the first place took its toll on the ‘Star Wars’ franchise – giving solo a 3-day opening of just $84.4m. The poor opening is further cemented by an International gross of just $68.2m; to put this into perspective, even March’s ‘Pacific Rim: Uprising’ opened abroad to $122.4m.

But what do these numbers mean? How can we already tell that ‘Solo’ is a Box Office bomb? Let’s have a look at its budget. We already know it’s the most expensive ‘Star Wars’ film of all time, but with Deadline recently reporting its production cost (before advertising charges, mind you) at well over $300m, ‘Solo’ is officially one of the most expensive films ever, and will thus need around $700m+ to break-even. From this, we can determine that a global opening of just over $150m does not cut it. We’re looking at ‘Solo’ finishing below $500m worldwide, losing well over $200m, making it one of the biggest Box Office flops of all time. It’s incredible. Just 2 and a half years ago, Disney released the biggest domestic film ever, and have now dropped a film in the same franchise that won’t even be the biggest film of the month.

We don’t want to revel in Disney’s failure here, but, there lingers a belief that Disney keeping its December release for ‘Solo’ would’ve at least ensured better Box Office legs, as well as causing potential competition to move their own release dates away. Instead, we have legitimised fears of ‘Star Wars’ fatigue, and serious questions over the future spinoffs (yes, including you Boba Fett) planned for the franchise. This, of course, comes after the $100m-budget ‘A Wrinkle In Time’ brought in just $129m worldwide recently, enough for losses well over $100m. A small consolation? Disney and Lucasfilm now have 1.5 years until ‘Episode 9’ to steer their wayward ship, and ensure profits continue for a potentially troubled franchise.

Solo’ wasn’t the only story of the Memorial Day weekend however, as ‘Deadpool 2’ dropped by 65% to pull in just $43.5m. We warned about the front-loaded sequel curse in our predictions on Friday, but this was a full $10m under our expectations. Still, its 4-day weekend total of $53.8m pushes its domestic grossing up to $218.5m, and globally it sits just a shade under the $500m mark. From a budget of $110m, Marvel are proving that R-rated franchises can also be money-makers if done well.

Next, we have ‘Infinity War’ which really benefited from ‘Solo’s weak performance, dropping by just 41% from last weekend. Now just $86m away from becoming the 4th film to ever reach $2bn, it passed ‘The Avengers’ domestically this weekend to claim 6th spot in the U.S. all-time charts. Although it won’t reach ‘Black Panther’ (which is still struggling to hit the $700m mark), Disney & Marvel studios will likely end the year with 2 of their 2018 releases in the domestic top 5 of all time.

One of the best performances of the weekend, Paramount’s ‘Book Club’, brought in a solid $10.1m in its 2nd week of release. It’s domestic total of $35.3m already gives it an opening weekend multiplier of 2.6x, putting it on track to be the one of the leggiest films of the year. ‘I Can Only Imagine’, the Christian biopic from mid-March, currently leads the pack with a 4.9x multiplier, but by the same point in its Box Office run as ‘Book Club’, it had a 2.2x multiplier. Paramount will be hoping that their rom-com continues this trend, and with the summer finally here, it’s looking likely to do so.

Life of the Party’ and ‘Breaking In’ both exceeded expectations by bringing in $5.4m and $4.3m each – their best drops yet. The Memorial Day weekend boosted this, as the big tentpole release this weekend had no impact on their audiences. Although the $30m budget may prove to be too costly for the Melissa McCarthy comedy (which is currently at $48.5m globally), the Will Packer-produced ‘Breaking In’, starring Gabrielle Union, is potentially looking at breaking-even soon, as it’s made $40m from just a $6m investment.

Show Dogs’ is performing eerily similarly to 2016s ‘Nine Lives’ (both had 2nd weekend % drops in their mid-40s), showing that the kids are pretty consistent with the whole talking-animals-in-a-poorly-reviewed-family-comedy thing (well, that isn’t ‘Alvin & The Chipmunks’). With only $12m in the bank domestically, this can officially be classed a Box Office bomb. That can’t be said for the comedy ‘Overboard’, which only dropped 32% for a $43m domestic haul, even after losing over 600 cinemas. Similarly, ‘A Quiet Place’ lost 800 and is officially coming to the end of its domestic run, pulling in $2.4m. Its worldwide gross of $312.5m has surely exceeded expectations, and from just a $17m budget, it sits alongside ‘Black Panther’ and ‘Solo’ as 2018s biggest Box Office shock. Finally, ‘RBG’ (still in limited release) grossed $1.3m for the 10th and final spot.

There we have it. ‘Solo’ bombs, ‘Infinity War’ continues its ascent, and ‘Book Club’ begins to really impress. What will happen next week, when 3 new releases enter the picture? Let us know your thoughts on Twitter and Instagram – we’re at @JUMPCUT_ONLINE.

 

Rank Last Week Rank Film Total U.S. Gross Weekend Gross

(4-day weekend)

Weekend drop

(4-day weekend)

Jumpcut’s prediction

(4-day weekend)

Difference (4-day weekend) Week number
1 Solo: A Star Wars Story $103m $84.4m

($103m)

$85m

($103.7m)

$0.6m

($0.7m)

1
2 1 Deadpool 2 $218.5m $43.5m

($53.8m)

-65.4%

(-57.1%)

$53m $9.5m 2
3 2 Avengers: Infinity War $627.6m $17.3m

(22.4m)

-41.3%

(-23.8%)

$14.7m $2.6m 5
4 3 Book Club $35.3m $10.1m

($13.1m)

-25.8%

(-3.4%)

$9m $1.1m 2
5 4 Life of the Party $40.9m $5.4m

($6.9m)

-29.3%

(-9.6%)

$3.8m $1.6m 3
6 5 Breaking In $37.1m $4.3m

($5.5m)

-37.2%

(-19.4%)

$2.7m $1.6m 3
7 6 Show Dogs $11.9m $3.3m

($4.3m)

-45.8%

(-28.1%)

$2.8m $0.5m 2
8 7 Overboard $42.6m $3.1m

($4.1m)

-32.3%

(-10.5%)

$2.4m $0.7m 4
9 8 A Quiet Place $180.8m $2.4m

($3.1m)

-38.3%

(-20.6%)

$2.6m $0.2m 8
10 12 RBG $6.2m $1.3m

($1.7m)

+2.8%

(+37.8%)

$1m $0.3m 4