Odds and Ends 

5 Upcoming Movies That Look Good And Crazy

It’s hard to keep up with every upcoming movie. The 27 superhero movies being released in 2018 alone are enough to tax anyone’s attention span to its limit, and since their collective advertising budget is larger than the GDP of most nations, you don’t even have to go out of your way to learn about them. So to help you stay in touch with contemporary culture, especially the parts that involve Nicolas Cage wielding a chainsaw, we’ve picked out five upcoming movies that could be worth your precious time.

5

The Ranger Is A Park Safety PSA Turned Into A Horror Movie

You know those hokey old low-budget after-school specials in which Smokey Bear told you that only you could prevent forest fires — which was technically true, if only in the sense that you had no intention of ever stepping foot in a forest? Well, what if you watched a bunch of those in a row while having a bad acid trip? The director and co-writer of The Ranger admitted to being inspired by the former, and we can only assume that the latter was involved as well.

Hood River EntertainmentWes Anderson’s Saw

The premise is that a bunch of punk kids on the run from the police decide to lay low in a national park while doing a ton of drugs — a plan we fully endorse, because that’s also how we spend our summers. But one of them has a secret dark past, and all of them find themselves pissing off “an unhinged park ranger with an axe to grind.” It’s a safe bet that the axe isn’t metaphorical.

Hood River EntertainmentIs this movie 3D or just shot with an atrocious lens? You decide!

So if you miss the days when teenagers were slaughtered in forests, unlike all these lazy Millennial horror victims who get haunted by paranormal activity without having to even leave their own homes, or if you want what could be the closest we’ll ever get to an adaptation of our R-rated Yogi Bear fanfiction, this could be one for you.

4

Animal World Is A Chinese Movie About A Clown Fighting Monsters That Co-Stars Michael Douglas

Do you love stylish action movies about cool ninjas fighting monsters, but find yourself wishing that the ninjas were also dressed as clowns? Then China has inexplicably made a movie for you.

Enlight PicturesTWIST: The clown isn’t the evil monster.

Plot details are scarce, but it appears to be about some sort of secret society that fights monsters in subway cars, and one of their warriors dresses as the love child of Ronald McDonald and Naruto. Also, Michael Douglas is in it as the possibly evil apparent head of the possible secret society that is possibly running some sort of monster-killing contest.

Enlight Pictures“You guys remember The Game? Check it out, it really doesn’t get the credit it deserves.”

It all looks like a script written by a teenage Juggalo, right down to the slow-mo stunts that are played so straight they swing back around to comedy. The one thing we’ve definitely ascertained so far is that this looks so ridiculous that we have to see it, if only so we can get a stronger read on whether Douglas is being held hostage or is just trying to make some quick yacht money. Either way, if you check it out, you’ll be able to tell people that you were into Asian clown martial arts sci-fi before everyone started ripping it off.

3

In Mandy, Nicolas Cage Uses A Chainsaw To Fight Cultist Bikers

Nicolas Cage is a complicated actor whose filmography defies description, at least until humanity comes up with a more elegant form of communication than mere words. In his latest artistic exercise / effort to pay off his extraordinary debt, Cage plays a logger who lives a simple, secluded existence with the love of his life, an artist named Mandy. But then a failed folk singer turned cult leader falls in love with Mandy and kidnaps her with the help of an occult biker gang. When Mandy rejects him, he burns her alive in front of Nicolas Cage. If you know anything about Nicolas Cage movies, you would understand that this is a mistake.

XYZ FilmsHe’s basically remaking Raising Arizona, only as the villain this time.

What follows is a Nicolas Cage revenge rampage that looks to equal his greatest rampages to date. He arms himself with a crossbow and a ridiculous giant axe, and according to the movie’s poster, he also gets into a chainsaw battle that’s lit like a lightsaber duel. Meanwhile, the biker cultists are using drugs to give themselves incredible powers. Now is a good time to remind you that Nicolas Cage won an Oscar for his sensitive and nuanced performance in Leaving Las Vegas.

XYZ FilmsThough that was also around the time we thought M. Night Shyamalan was the next Hitchcock, so maybe we were all drunk.

There’s a lot that could be said about Mandy, but whether or not it’s for you could be summed up entirely by your reaction to the following quote: “At one point Cage simply pours a bottle of liquor on his wounds and down his throat while screaming.” Do with that knowledge what you will.

Important: Please note that this movie has nothing to do with Mom And Dad, wherein Cage plays a father in a world where a mysterious television transmission compels all parents to obsessively try to murder their own children. That is a completely different 2018 movie in which Cage wields a chainsaw. Thank you.

2

In Moose, Fred Durst Directs John Travolta In A Movie About Stalking

Limp Bizkit shouting man Fred Durst and John Travolta go together like peanut butter and asteroids — seemingly never, unless in the ramblings of a madman. But since the sanity of Durst, famous lover of nookie and getting banned from Ukraine, has always seemed a little tenuous, maybe we shouldn’t be surprised that he is somehow directing John Travolta.

VarietyYou can stare at those words all you want, but they’re not suddenly going to start being logical.

This dream (of a very specific kind of person) team is working on a movie in which Travolta plays a man who’s stalking and trying to destroy the life of an action star. The script was co-written by Durst and inspired by a fan who stalked him, and we’re admittedly struggling to think of a villain more terrifying than one based on a man who looked at the pantheon of celebrities and decided that Fred Durst was the one worth obsessing over. It is not yet clear why the movie is called Moose, although we’re holding out hope that the stalker is a literal moose voiced by Travolta.

“There certainly is no shortage of amazing Fred Durst stories to tell, but this one in particular is unequivocally cinematic in how it plays out,” reads a press release that may one day be reexamined as proof that aliens are trying to communicate with us while not quite grasping human thoughts and feelings. “John’s range as an actor will once again be shown off as he steps into a character that Fred is all too familiar with — making this pairing so exciting,” it continues. While we are indeed extremely excited about this film, it may not be for the reasons they hope. The release concludes with “We couldn’t be happier,” because sometimes the greatest lies are the ones we tell ourselves.

To be fair, this isn’t entirely out of the blue, as Durst, whose greatest hits were about breaking stuff and encouraging his ex-girlfriend to shove a cookie up her ass, previously directed two movies a decade ago. And naturally, they were, uh, a coming-of-age drama and a feel-good movie about the first girl to play quarterback in a children’s football tournament.

Anchor Bay Entertainment, Metro-Goldwyn-MayerCasting Travolta (presumably?) ends his streak of leading men rocking afros.

Oh, and he also directed an eHarmony commercial. What is your career, Fred?

1

Profile Is The Mostly True Story Of A Journalist Who Catfished ISIS, As Told Via Skype By The Director Of The Ben-Hur Remake

No, you’re not having a stoke, that header will make sense once we explain it. In 2015, a French journalist created a fake Facebook profile and made contact with a high-ranking ISIS recruiter to investigate the methods they use to lure lonely, disaffected women to their cause.

Bazelevs CompanyFun fact: Even brutal killers use emojis in conversation.

Her story is bonkers, and there’s a lot of interesting ideas to explore regarding how people are pulled into extreme situations, so it’s not surprising that her book is being given the movie treatment. What is surprising is that the movie takes place entirely on computer screens, that it invents conflicted emotions over “real romantic feelings” (the real journalist called the ISIS guy she talked to “someone without humanity,” which would imply that she did not harbor a hidden desire to bone him), and that it’s directed by Timur Bekmambetov, whose most recent efforts include Ben-Hur But With That Cool Boardwalk Empire Guy and Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter. Bekmambetov was also the producer of Unfriended, a movie about a haunted Skype conversation, so maybe he has an obsession with films about weird shit going down online?

Depending on which early review you read, Profile is either brilliant (and more effective on your laptop than in a theater) or gimmicky and borderline offensive. Judge for yourself the next time you’re in the mood to see the world’s most awkward flirting.

Mark is on Twitter and has a relatively normal book.

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