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Posts Tagged ‘Sahara’

This year saw sequels to John Wick and Kingsman.  Writer, director Matthew Vaughn has already suggested that he intends Kingsman to be a trilogy.  Director David Leitch has explained that he always intended Atomic Blonde to have a sequel, something that is clear from the ending of the first film. Below are five films that were either intended to be part of a series, a sequel was muted but never made, or like Atomic Blonde, finished in a way that teased a follow-up.  As yet the all stand alone without a sequel or franchise. 

Sahara (2005)

We have seen Dirk Pitt before, that was a commercial disaster too.  The Clive Cussler character was played by Richard Jordan in Raise the Titanic (1980).  Unlike Raise the Titanic, which is terrible, Sahara is brilliant.  An underrated and fun action adventure, the closest anyone has ever come to emulating Indiana Jones. The right blend of hero and comedian Matthew McConaughey was perfectly cast and had great chemistry with co-stars Penélope Cruz and Steve Zahn. Sadly the film “underperformed” at the box-office and was beset with legal issues mainly involving author Clive Cussler making a sequel unlikely, the character is sure to be resurrected in future.

Why does it deserve a franchise?

The character is a great, the film is fun and Matthew McConaughey was perfectly cast.  Too much time has passed to make a sequel likely but I have no doubt the charater will make it to the big screen again.  Chris Pratt is the obvious choice of current actors to play the part.  Sahara was based on the eleventh of twenty-four novels to date, so there is plenty of material to go at.Sahara

Miami Vice (2006)

The idea for a film version of Miami Vice came from Jamie Foxx whist filming Ali. The story he tells is of him pitching the idea of a really slick and cool undercover team, he did so describing scenes.  Although Michael Mann has confirmed the idea of making a film based on the 80’s TV show (produced by Mann) came from Foxx his ideas didn’t make it into the final film.  Foxx however did get to play Ricardo Tubbs one of the lead roles.  The other Sonny Crockett is played by Colin Farrell on the recommendation of original Crockett, Don Johnson.  The role of Castillo went to Barry Shabaka Henley after Edward James Olmos who played the part on TV turned it down.  The film really delivers on the ultra slick, ultra stylish film just like the main characters.  A truly underrated gem that didn’t find an audience when released, but is starting to develop a loyal following.

Why does it deserve a franchise?

Firstly because it is brilliant.  Foxx and Farrell are great together and the plots their characters could be placed in are endless. Miami Vice

Mr. Brooks (2007)

Kevin Costner plays the eponymous Mr. Brooks, a successful businessman who also happens to be a serial killer. Brooks wants to give up killing but is encouraged by his alter ego, portrayed on screen by William Hurt. His life becomes more complicated when he has to deal with family issues involving his daughter (Danielle Panabaker) and when a careless action forces him to take on a protégé (Dane Cook). A the time trying to stay one step ahead of an unusually driven detctive (Demi Moore)

Why does it deserve a franchise?

First and foremost, it was intended as a the first of a trilogy. It performed well enough at the box-office. There is also mileage in the premise: Despite the somewhat macabre nature of the film the scenes between Costner and Hurt are a blast. There are also interesting places the farther daughter relationship could go.Mr Brooks

Doomsday (2008)

Nobody makes high quality genre B movies like Neil Marshall, Doomsday is a perfect example of this type of film.   Rhona Mitra plays Eden Sinclair, a cynical and wisecracking, hardcore but emotionally detached soldier. Essentially she is a female Snake Plissken.  The plot owes a debt to  Snake Plissken as it sees Sinclair enter a walled off Scotland to find a cure for a plague threatening to wipe out the population of England.  The film is bonkers but total fun.

Why does it deserve a franchise?

The film ended in a interesting place that could be further explored.  The character could also be used in many different scenarios.  Had a follow-up been made within a year or two, a prequel would have been a good idea. Rhona Mitra Doomsday

Wanted (2008)

Loosely based on the comic book miniseries of the same name by Mark Millar and J. G. Jones, Wanted is the story of Wesley (James McAvoy), an ordinary guy in a dead end job until Fox (Angelina Jolie) tells him that his farther was a professional assassin and the people who killed him are after Wesley.  Directed with great visual flair by Timur Bekmambetov (The man responsible for Night Watch (2004) and Day Watch (2006)), in a time before John Wick, it was a groundbreaking action film, made all the better by the unlikely casting of McAvoy.

Why does it deserve a franchise?

The idea of a sequel keeps cropping up but never happens. It has been suggested that McAvoy and Bekmambetov have been interested in a returning.  Other actors are less likely to return and would need new characters to drive the plot.  It could work. Wanted

Between 9 and 12 years old, it is unlikely any of these films will ever have a sequel.  Some of them by be remade or rebooted.  Some may even have the same fate as The Mortal Instruments: City of Bones (2013).  Part of a hugely successful YA book series, it underperformed on the big screen but found a new home on TV as Shadowhunters: The Mortal Instruments (2016) that will be going into its third season next spring. 

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The cinema has been awash with sequels in recent years some good, many bad! But are there any characters you would like to see again? Here are a few I would like to see:

Eden Sinclair – Played by Rhona Mitra – Doomsday (2008): A cynical and wisecracking, hardcore but emotionally detached soldier. Essentially she is a female Snake Plissken, when she says “if he touches me one more time, I will kill him where he stands” you know its true. With the character left open at the end of Doomsday, a sequel could follow, but only if written and directed by Neil Marshall, anything would be a mistake.Eden Sinclair Rhona Mitra

Dirk Pitt – Played by Matthew McConaughey – Sahara (2005): We have seen Dirk Pitt before, played by Richard Jordan in Raise the Titanic (1980), but that’s best forgotten. Sahara is an underrated and fun action adventure, the closest anyone has ever come to emulating Indiana Jones. The right blend of hero and comedian Matthew McConaughey was perfectly cast and had great chemistry with co-stars Penélope Cruz and Steve Zahn. Sadly the film “underperformed” at the box-office and was beset with legal issues mainly involving author Clive Cussler making a sequel unlikely but we can hope.Dirk Pitt Matthew McConaughey

The Bride – Played by Uma Thurman – Kill Bill: Vol. 1 (2003) & Vol. 2 (2004): The Bride aka Beatrix Kiddo codename Black Mamba is the character created by Thurman and writer/director Quentin Tarantino. A member of the Deadly Viper Assassination Squad, a group of female assassins with a striking resemblance to “Fox Force Five” the group that Mia Wallace (played by Uma Thurman) describes in Pulp Fiction when talking about the TV pilot that she was in. There has been a lot of speculation about a Kill Bill 3, but who knows what Tarantino is thinking. Will we see a grownup Nikki Bell (Ambrosia Kelley) tracking down the bride?The Bride Uma Thurman

Wesley – Played by James McAvoy – Wanted (2008): When Russian director Timur Bekmambetov (The man responsible for Night Watch (2004) and Day Watch (2006)) made Wanted, James McAvoy was an unlikely action stat , but he really pulls it off. There has been talk of a sequel since before the release of the original film, but it has never happened. Their have been reports that both McAvoy and Bekmambetov are interested so it could happen.

Wesley James McAvoy

Nikita – Played by Anne Parillaud – Nikita (1990): We have already seen a lot of Nikita, there has been an American remake and two TV series, but what I would really like to see is a new movie written and directed by Luc Besson and starring Anne Parillaud. The plot possibilities are endless but one thing that could be interesting, Parillaud and Besson have a daughter, Juliette Besson who is in her mid twenties.

Anne Parillaud as Nikita and her daughter Juliette Besson

Anne Parillaud as Nikita and her daughter Juliette Besson

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Matthew McConaughey is a second-rate actor who appears in crappy rom-com’s with posters that feature him leaning against his co-star a stupid grin on his face. It would be easy to believe this based on some of the terrible movies he has appeared in, but look a little deeper and you will se some great performances in interesting movies.

As with many people he first came to my attention in 1993’s Dazed and Confused. Looking back now Richard Linklater’s ensemble cast looks impressive, however, the truly impressive thing is that they were unknowns at the time. The funniest and most charismatic of these, despite his reprehensible attitude towards high school girls was McConaughey’s David Wooderson. A Time to Kill is still my favourite movie based on a John Grisham novel, it is even more impressive when you consider it was directed by Joel Schumacher around the same time as he was fucking up the Batman franchise. McConaughey is perfectly cast as Jake Brigance, an easygoing but honourable southern lawyer who more than holds his own against an impressive cast including: Samuel L. Jackson, Kevin Spacey, Brenda Fricker, Donald Sutherland and Patrick McGoohan.

He followed this up with impressive performances in Lone Star (1996), Amistad (1997), Contact (1997) and a reunion with Richard Linklater in the true story of The Newton Boys (1998). Edtv (1999) was a sublime satire that is remarkably prophetic given the rise of reality TV in the decade that followed its release. It was sadly overshadowed by the previous years The Truman Show. Like his character Ed Pekurny in the show he stars in McConaughey’s is the reason to watch the movie, he is as perfect for the part as Jim Carrey was for Truman.

U-571 (2000) is a routine action, adventure, thriller, it has its issues but is largely enjoyable and gives us a first look at McConaughey in a more action orientated movie. Two films that best exemplify his action credentials are: the man v dragon movie Reign of Fire (2002) where he makes the future Batman and King Leonidas (Christian Bale and Gerard Butler) look like average Joe’s. It isn’t a great movie, but it is great fun. The same can be said for the underrated Sahara (2005). Based on a Clive Cussler novel, and featuring the character Dirk Pitt in his second movie outing (the first was played by Richard Jordan in the rubbish Raise the Titanic, 1980). A fun action adventure that is as close as anyone has ever come to emulating Indiana Jones. McConaughey has the right blend of hero and comedian and has great chemistry with co-stars Penélope Cruz and Steve Zahn. Sadly the film “underperformed” at the box-office and was beset with legal issues mainly involving author Clive Cussler making a sequel unlikely.

After a slew of the aforementioned crappy rom-com’s last year saw a return to form with an adaptation of the Michael Connelly novel The Lincoln Lawyer. Mick Haller is a sleazy defence attorney, radically different from the honourable boy scout Jake Brigance in A Time to Kill but no less charismatic. This year sees McConaughey take on three radically different roles: A cop with a sideline in murder for hire in William Friedkin’s Killer Joe, a male stripper in Steven Soderbergh’s Magic Mike and a journalist trying to exonerate a man on death row in The Paperboy.

So next time you see a picture of Matthew McConaughey leaning against his co-star on a movie poster of a film like Ghosts of Girlfriends Past or The Wedding Planner, give the guy a break and remind yourself that he has made some more interesting movies.

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