Tag Archive: reese witherspoon


Forbes has released their figures this week of who the highest paid actors in Hollywood are… and it’s not good news for Eddie Murphy. The list piles together the salaries and profits of the films these actors and actresses have made in the last five years and the ‘overpaid’ part comes from how much their films make at the box office per every $1 the actor/actress is paid. Unfortunately for Eddie Murphy, the list does not take in to account voice acting because, according to Forbes, the star isn’t the major pull for animated films.

Here is the list in full:

Shut up and quit, Murphy.

1. Eddie Murphy

2. Katherine Heigl

3. Reese Witherspoon

4. Sandra Bullock

5. Jack Black

6. Nicolas Cage

7. Adam Sandler

8. Denzel Washington

9. Ben Stiller

10. Sarah Jessica-Parker

 

It should come as no surprise that Murphy tops the list, I mean when was the last time he really made a good live action film? He has been off the boil now for at least six years, going on 10. It’s also no surprise that Katherine Heigl appears so high up on the list; as much as I do like her as an actress she doesn’t half make some God awful films, not least One For the Money that I actually sat all the way through this year (medal please?).

The list seems to be made up of actors who have ‘lost it’. Murphy, Adam Sandler, Nicolas Cage, Jack Black, Ben Stiller and Sarah Jessica-Parker are a long time past their best but because they are big names they can still demand a high salary, despite their box office pull not being as strong as they might like to think.

Maybe those ridiculous Ghost Rider films had something to do with it.

The name I most unexpected to see on this list is Denzel Washington but I think that it makes sense he will be on here. I think that, especially in recent years, when you cast Denzel Washington you’re not casting him because you think he will bring in a large audience; you are casting him because you know you’re going to get a flawless performance in a dramatic piece: Flight and American Gangster are the best examples of this.

After the release of these statistics maybe some of these actors should think about stopping making movies… I’m looking at you Sandler!!

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Rendition (2007) Review.

Rendition is a thriller, released in 2007 to mixed reviews. It centres on a CIA analyst who begins to question his assignment after witnessing an unorthodox interrogation at a secret detention facility outside the US. The film is based on the true story of Khalid El-Masri who was mistaken for Khalid Al-Masri.

It features a cast of many big names: Jake Gyllenhaal, Reese Witherspoon, Peter Sarsgaard (who spends most of the film looking incredibly similar to Ewan McGregor), Meryl Streep and J.K. Simmons and is directed by Gavin Hood who is also responsible for ruining a fan favourite Marvel character’s origins in X-Men Origins: Wolverine. The performances of the above are not that bad and that is the highest compliment I can pay them, however the performance of Omar Metwally who plays the man mistaken for a terrorist is absolutely fantastic; he completely steals the show.

Jake Gyllenhaal’s character is very two dimensional. I like Gyllenhaal as an actor and when he turns it on he really does turn it on, but here in Rendition something is lacking. His character is poor and nothing can really bring him to life. Witherspoon’s character is just irritating from start to finish while Sarsgaard’s character seems useless. The heavyweights Simmons and Streep aren’t used nearly enough. The character development and characters in general need to be better written and are not well rounded or even that likeable.

Some of the torture scenes in which Anwar El-Ibrahimi is treated horrifically by the American government are when this film comes into its own. They are very well filmed and recreated and clearly a lot of research went into making those scenes authentic and they do, at times, become very hard to watch because we, as the audience, know that the victim is innocent.

My biggest problem with Rendition though is its genre. Thriller. Here’s a little piece of advice; you can’t call a film a thriller when it isn’t even thrilling in the slightest! A thriller, in my opinion, needs to have a mystery, it needs to have shocks and keep the audience on the edge of their seats. Rendition fails to do this majorly. There are parts of the film where it seems as though the director is trying to build up sympathy or the characters or try and give a subtle shock to the audience but it only plants the seeds for a plot twist and the seeds never really come to fruition.

When I sat down to watch the film I had read what it was about and was anticipating something very entertaining as I was impressed with the storyline and the cast but as the film grew on (from what was a very boring first half into a mediocre second) I soon came to realise that I was not watching the film I had hoped. Rendition was a let down; an anti-war film that never really takes off.

Having read around the film I know that it has its fans but I just can’t imagine myself wanting to watch it again.

My Rating: 4/10.

Jason Segel in Sex Tape

This is not the latest Hollywood scandal, but instead the How I Met Your Mother star’s upcoming movie. With Jason Segel playing the leading man, the project is currently looking for it’s director and leading lady.

Jason Segel’s co-writer on The Muppets, Nicholas Stoller, was attached to direct Sex Tape but has had to drop out due to scheduling conflicts. Stoller previously directed Segel in The Five Year Engagement but now, Jake Kasdan is favourite to get the job. Kasdan’s last film was Bad Teacher with Cameron Diaz and he has also directed a few episodes of hit TV show, New Girl, so would be a great addition to the project.

The role of leading lady in the comedy is still up for grabs, so who will be making this Sex Tape with Jason Segel? Segel, himself, mentioned Reese Witherspoon as a possible choice, but with the This Means War star recently announcing her third pregnancy she may not want to do this. Emily Blunt seems another favourite; she stars with Segel in The Five Year Engagement and actually lives next door to the actor and the two are good friends. Other rumoured choices include Rose Byrne and Jennifer Garner.

One of these actresses could be Segel's co-star.

It seems like Jason Segel is taking his assault on Hollywood comedy seriously and is quickly trying to become a leading man. With roles in Bad Teacher, I Love You Man and Forgetting Sarah Marshall under his belt, Segel really broke through with mainstream audiences with The Muppets and is looking to use that success to move his career forward.

Segel is a fantastic comedy writer and isn’t too bad as a comedy actor either so he may have what it takes to become one of Hollywood’s best comedic talents.

Sex Tape is scheduled for a 2013 release.

***MAY CONTAIN SPOILERS***

Film makers have always wondered how they could get men to go and see a rom-com without being forced by their partner, the solution they came up with? Cast Bane and Captain Kirk in the leading roles. And, luckily for them and for audiences everywhere, it is a right little treat.

Directed by McG (executive producer of hit TV shows Supernatural and Chuck; director of Terminator Salvation and the Charlie’s Angels films) This Means War is a ‘brom-com’ about two of the best CIA agents who put their friendship to the test when they discover they are dating the same woman.

Reese Witherspoon is Lauren, the woman at the centre of the exploits. When her friend signs her up to a dating website Tuck (Tom Hardy) finds her and asks her out on a date, then after the date she bumps into FDR (Chris Pine) whose persistence, after a rocky start, eventually persuades her to date him too. When the agents find out they are dating the same woman they put down ground rules, soon to be broken, and begin spying on (and sabotaging) each other’s dates with Lauren. All this whilst also trying to catch Heinrich, an international criminal.

Witherspoon’s character is important to the story but, in my opinion, was not likeable as a character. At the start I just found her to be annoying and at the end I was still annoyed by her, especially when she tried to take the moral high ground over FDR and Tuck even though she had been dating the both of them behind each other’s backs.

Tom Hardy’s performance was a calm, understated one, slightly outshone by Chris Pine, but he put in a good performance nonetheless and was believable as a character. You felt his feelings for Lauren but more importantly you felt his friendship with FDR and his love for FDR also. The friendship between the two male leads was vital for this film to work and it was believable down to every single factor.

 

Chris Pine is the real star of This Means War though. He is doing what he does best here, he plays cocky agent FDR who has a real eye for the ladies and, in his own words, is an ‘expert’ with them. Pine’s performance is also the funniest of the three and hopefully he will be in more comedy films throughout his career, if he has enough time away from captaining the USS Enterprise. FDR’s character arc is easily charted throughout the film too and he shows real growth by the end of the movie.

There are plenty of laughs and the film is thoroughly enjoyable. The character’s interactions between the two men are always pretty funny, especially the little ‘relationship-esque’ bickering and FDR constantly calling Tuck when he hasn’t heard from him for over an hour. This Means War is also clever too as one of the very first lines in the film ends up being very important as it foreshadows how they are eventually found by Heinrich.

This Means War provides a lot of enjoyment and is well worth a watch. The real love story isn’t between Lauren and the two agents, but between the two agents themselves: Tuck and FDR. Their friendship is what makes this film work and the fact that they care so much about each other allows the audience to care for them just as much. It will make you laugh a lot and give you some good fight scenes at the same time.

My Rating: 7/10.