WEEK 4 of Worlds Best Media’s SPRING 2021 Movie & TV Preview begins with this installment of TRAILERS OF THE WEEK! We have the sick new trailers for F9:The Fast & Furious Saga, with the talented Justin Lin returning to direct, and Army of The Dead, directed by Zack Snyder! Let’s start with Army of The Dead starring Dave Bautista. Now, I know what some of you are thinking, probably that you’re a little sick of Zack Snyder after so much coverage of his Justice League film last month. However, I LOVE zombie movies, Snyder directed one of the best zombie movies of all time with Dawn of The Dead, and this trailer looks fucking sick! Take a look below…
Army of The Dead premieres on Netflix and Select Theaters 5/21/21
Next up, we have F9: The Fast Saga or The Fast and The Furious9 or who gives a shit? We all now why we show up for this absurdly entertaining series of films. Out of the 2 trailers we’re highlighting this week,the one with zombies is the MUCH MORE realistic of the two. After a year long delay due to COVID, F9: The Fast Saga finally hits theaters this June. I make no apologies, I fucking LOVE these movies and you can’t bet your ass that this is one of my MUST WATCH movies this summer!
F9: The Fast Saga hit theaters 6/25/21
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Two years ago when Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle was about to come out, I was one of the only people I knew that was actually excited to see it. I even wrote an article about it here on World’s Best Media, what I wanted to see. One of the things that I talked about wanting, was world building. Welcome to the Jungle brought us into the world of Jumanji in a way that they weren’t able to do in 1995 when the Robin Williams version was made. It was awesome, and I genuinely loved the film.
The latest entry in the series, Jumanji: The Next Level delivers on the world building aspects. We’re no longer confined to just a traditional jungle environment, but get to see the desert, and a snow covered jungle, and with new levels, we get different animals than the previous film. This is now fully realized, and I suspect I know how the next film is going to go, but we’ll get to that in a little bit.
* SPOILER ALERT! For The Rest Of This Article*
One of the cool things of Welcome to the Jungle, was that our four main characters, are avatars of teenagers, and it allows for some strong character moments, as well as comedic fodder. Jack Black was a teenage girl, Dwayne Johnson was a skittish nerdy kid, Karen Gillan was a nerdy girl, and Kevin Hart was a black jock. In this film, in order to keep everything fresh, they scramble the characters and introduce some new ones. This time, Johnson is playing Danny Devito, Kevin Hart is Danny Glover, Jack Black is now the jock, and Spencer , who had the Dwayne Johnson avatar in the last game, is now Awkwafina who is a new playable character.
Eventually once they’ve done the necessary character work, they find a way to switch all the characters back into the previous avatars, with Danny Glover becoming a horse, and Danny Devito transferring into Awkwafina.
Since the avatar actors playing multiple characters (mostly) is such a big part of the film let’s talk about it. Personally, I think Welcome to the Jungle’s character assignments were perfect, but I understand that they wanted to do some work with it this time. Kevin Hart is great as both of his characters, handling Danny Glover’s character just as well as the jock character. Also Awkwafina is amazing as both characters; she handles being a nerdy teenage boy with perfection, and I think her Danny Devito is great. That brings us to Dwayne Johnson, I don’t love his Danny Devito; he has moments that are great, but there’s a lot of moments when the ‘Rock’ persona and Devito persona aren’t blended well; he doesn’t fully get the cadence and accent right, and it’s a bit cartoony. Jack Black as the athlete doesn’t work well for me, it’s not terrible, but Jack Black as the jock handles the character stuff well, but his ‘black voice’ borders on uncomfortable, it’s less about racial issues for me, and more about his voice falling into the uncanny valley, of being close enough to not be offensive, but far enough where it’s awkward.
I think that the character work, and set pieces really overcome all of the shortcomings in the performances. I won’t tell you much about the actual plot, I wouldn’t do it much justice, but the film is well paced, and really enjoyable. I’ll just say, as you should already know, is that our characters win, and escape Jumanji. So let’s talk about easter eggs, and where I think the next installment is going.
In the previous film, the characters find tree a house with a carving that says: “Alan Parrish was here”. Which is an homage to Robin Williams and the first Jumanji movie. And I amThe Next Level, talks about a restaurant called Nora’s several times throughout the film, and eventually once everything is back to normal we discover that Nora was the Bebe Neuwirth character from the original, and in the end we see her hiring Danny Devito. I suspect that she’ll have some part to play in the next film, and will not just be a cameo.
As our heroes, recently returned to their own bodies outside of the game go to Nora’s to grab a meal and celebrate their victory, we cut back to the video game console, in the teenage boy’s basement as a heating repairman goes to touch it, and we hear the drumbeats that signal the game is coming, and cut to the main street where Nora’s is, and a pack of Ostriches comes rampaging down the street, the characters see them, and we cut to the credits.
Now, when I say I think I know where this is going, it’s probably pretty obvious, and I’m not making any bold predictions, but I think we’re going to get to see a setting more similar to the original film, (although I suspect the effects and scale will be drastically expanded), and we’ll have to see the characters working with the avatars who have stepped out of the game into their world. This will allow for a third set of avatar characters, the ones that the game originally intends for them, and by bringing them into our world, they keep the ‘fish out of water’ theme. I also suspect we may see something of a “Last Action Hero”/Buzz Lightyear style identity crisis within the characters in which they realize their reality isn’t actual reality.
Personally, after the previous two films, I’m 100% down for whatever comes next.
The pinnacle of modern filmmaking? Very likely. After watching this trailer I did a set of sick squats, blasted my pecs, drank 5 pints of Guinness, and ate a 42 ounce steak. This trailer is so MANLY, it made ME more manly.
When Jumanji came out in 1995, I was eleven years old, and my Aunt Amy and Uncle Mike brought me and my little sister to see it, and it was awesome. This was possibly the most intense action movie we had seen at that time, and we hadn’t even broken any rules watching it, it was for us!
At the end of the movie, there was a very clear lead in to a sequel, with the board game being found on a beach, and so as it fades to black the whole audience thinks “oh here we go again!”
But this was before it was obligatory that all blockbusters became franchises, and perhaps it wasn’t the box office behemoth I assumed it was, so we never got a sequel. …Until now!
Now, you’ve probably seen the trailer for Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle, starring Jack Black, Karen Gillan, Kevin Hart, and Dwayne Johnson. From what I have gathered, I am the only one excited for this film, but that’s because I’m the only one who is right.
Here’s the deal, the original Jumanji, was about a board game which pulled one character into it, and eventually spit all of the world of the game out of it into the real world. It was pretty cool, but ultimately it was grounded in the real world, and personally I always wanted to see the world of Jumanji. Then we got the cartoon, and in that we saw the characters of the film go into the game, and it didn’t quite make sense with the continuity but it was still cool.
Welcome to the Jungle!
Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle, is a video game that sucks four teenagers in, putting them into the bodies of the game’s avatars. The fact that it’s a video game and not the original board game seems to be a major point of contention for people, but honestly we have Monopoly video games, and Lego video games, and all kinds of video games that might seem redundant or unnecessary, so why not magically possessed adventure games in both formats?
There have been reports that Robin Williams’ character will have left an imprint on the game, which means it falls into the same continuity, and I have to be honest, I’m psyched. Jumanji is a great concept, and I don’t think they fully actualized it in the first film, in fact I even liked Zathura, which was just space Jumanji.
One of the cool things about this concept, is that it opens up what they can do with Jumanji. We could see all manners of jungle beasts imagined and real, in a human killing rampage of nature. There are many different terrains the world of Jumanji can inhabit, and so maybe in this movie it’s just Amazonian style jungle, but there are going to be sequels (if it makes enough money, and it has The Rock, so lets face it, it will). That’s the great part about the video game avatars, is that we could have the cast for a full trilogy, but not necessarily have the characters be the same throughout.
In addition to wanting a lot of world building, and exploration of that world, I want cameos. I want Bonnie Hunt, or Kirsten Dunst, or that other kid. I want this film to be the clear baton passing, and then after that, we get to the new Jumanji franchise. Kill off Han Solo in the first film, and move on. That’s what I want to see!