by John S.
Cinema Jackpot! is a series that reviews films with uncertain origins which ultimately became popular smash hits. Everyone loves a good success story. Join us as we explore how these movies caught lightning in a bottle and triumphed.
(Cinema Jackpot! will run on alternating schedules with Movie Postmortems)
THE CONTESTANT: Casino Royale
THE ODDS: It’s one thing to reboot a franchise if it’s dying and foundering at the box-office. It’s quite another to go back to square one at the exact moment the franchise is riding high and racking up record grosses. However, that’s exactly what Barbara Broccoli, the powerful owner of the long-running and highly successful James Bond franchise, bravely did in 2004. She didn’t really have to. Die Another Day had scored the biggest opening for a Bond film in November 2002 ($47 million) before going onto gross $431 million worldwide – a franchise best. Broccoli and company could’ve easily kept on the same path.
by John S.
Movie Postmortems is a series that reviews certain films which showed promise but misfired, critically and/or commercially, upon release. Join us in our attempt to find out what the hell happened.
THE CASUALTY: Dying Young
THE CASE HISTORY: 1990 is the Year of Julia Roberts. In addition to a Golden Globes nomination for Best Supporting Actress for 1989’s Steel Magnolias, Roberts co-stars with Richard Gere in a romantic comedy titled Pretty Woman. Chronicling the unexpected romance between a Hollywood Boulevard prostitute and the business tycoon who hires her for a week, Pretty Woman becomes a massive hit – and the most successul romantic comedy up until that point in time ($178 million, domestic; $463 million, global). Summer sees the release of the supernatural sci-fi thriller Flatliners, wherein Roberts holds her own against a male-dominated cast led by Kiefer Sutherland and Kevin Bacon. Her profile is further elevated by Flatliners’ modest success ($61 million, domestic).
If you could pick one movie to show a young person so that they would fall in love with cinema, what would you choose?
One of the best film events in the city is coming right up, and with it will come dozens of opportunities for the next generation to fall in love with the movies. The Children’s Film Festival Seattle takes place January 25-February 10 at Northwest Film Forum. You can see the full lineup of feature films, amazing animation, special events that involve pancakes, guests from around the world, and much more here.