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Magnificent Sevens … myth, math and aftermath … Part 1

10 Oct

I finally went and saw The Magnificent Seven (2016) the other night.
I had initially said that I wouldn’t judge this movie by the original,
but it raises so many issues surrounding modern Film Making – and Westerns
that I couldn’t resist.

the-magnificent-7-2016“Justice has a number”
M7 (2016) tagline

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mgm-lioncolumbia-logo“Remakes? You probably shouldn’t go there.”
– My Favorite Westerns

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The CWF Film Critique System

Being a Film Critic of no renown, I have deferred my critiquing chores to my unfamous and trusted colleague Cecil W. (Wannabe) FordWannabe is not a respected Film Critic, but to make up for that by his high HO (Highly Opinionated) Rating – especially of himself. This, combined with his unique CWF Critique System (whereby each movie is subjected to Wannabe’s stringent CWF testing criteria) he arrives at a judgment. Maybe.

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Let us proceed.

The Magnificent Seven (2016) Review

by Cecil W(annabe). Ford

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 I like to think that NOTHING is impossible.
But my expectations were not high.
Why? Because a Remake of the Magnificent Seven IS pretty well impossible.
Denzel Washington says right there himself at the start of the movie:

Quote:
Denzel Washington
(Sam Chisolm):
“Took a job – looking for a some men to join us.”
Chris Pratt (Josh Farraday):
“Is it difficult?”
Denzel Washington:
“Impossible.”

This is not mere dialogue (quoted from the first movie): It’s Film director and Producer Antoine Fuqua’s open admission that there is no way he could make a movie that will equal the Original Magnificent Seven (1960).
No way.
You have to give him credit for admitting that. He knew it. And there are definite reasons for that knowledge – things that were beyond his control. I’ll get to those …

antoine-fuqua

The real question is: Why? Why make the movie? Why make movie that you know is going to be compared to the incomparable? If you know something is impossible, then Why attempt it?

the-magnificent-7-why

Antoine Fuqua’s last 9 movies have all made money – including M7 2016.
In Film Making that makes him a SuperStar.

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Time for Wannabe’s Test # One:

Test One: The CWF Charismometer
Measuring Star Power / Charisma / Casting

My first Test will employ the trusty CWF Charismometer. This will infallibly measure, Star Power, Charisma, and Casting – vital components in any movie – and the main factors that Fuqua, his Writers, and the Producers … or anybody – could not match from the Original Magnificent Seven.

We’ll start with Yul Brunner and Denzel Washington.

Charismometer says:

the-magnificent-7-2016-denzel-meter

Denzel is a Star. No doubt about it. And a good Actor.
And if he wasn’t in M7 2016, it wouldn’t hardly be worth a sniff.
But compared to Yul Brynner?
Well, it’s a good thing I tested Denzel first, because Yul blew my Charismometer  to smithereens.

the-magnificent-7-2016-yul-meterBOOOM!

This is the first reason  – and likely most important reason – M7 2016 couldn’t match the original.

I will next test the rest …

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Those Thrilling Stars of Yesteryear

Is it just me? or is the Star Power in modern Film not equal to the Star Power of yesteryear – 50’s and 60’s. 70’s???
John Wayne, Cary Grant, Charlton Heston, Kirk Douglas, Gregory Peck, James Stewart, Clark Gable, Bogart, Gary Cooper, Spencer Tracy, Fonda, Brando 
I could go on and on and on. And then start on the ladies.
Yes. we certainly have Stars and some very good actors these days … but …

Part 2 … Coming Soon

 

The Magificent Seven / 2016 The Reviews …

9 Sep


ballad of a well-known gun / elton john

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My Opinion ??
This movie will make money.THE MAGNIFICENT 7 2016 - poster 2

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The Magnificent Seven … 2016

2 Sep

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The Magnificent Seven (2016) will be released Sept. 23 in theaters across North America.  It will also premiere at the Toronto International Film Festival announced on Sept. 8 as the festival’s opening night attraction.

We won’t have to long to wait to see if this Remake is going to be Heroic – or shot down.

THE MAGNIFICENT 7 2016 - Denzel Washington

Unfortunately there are signs of trouble.

How so?

Most every Movie these days is ‘Pre-Screened’  – viewed by test audiences. The feedback from these Pre-Screening sets certain things in motion. If response from Pre-Screening is GOOD, almost nothing else needs to be done. Celebrate and release the Movie.
If NOT, other things can happen.
Certain scenes may be reshot, added, or edited.
If the response is TERRIBLE, the Movie might straight to DVD – No Distribution – and hope for some sales there while not incurring any more expenses.
That couldn’t happen to this movie – it’s a highly anticipated big production remake of a Western Classic. And it has Denzel Washington.
Yet if the Pre-Screening feedback either POOR or UNFAVORABLE – then more Promotion and Advertising might be in order – to bump interest.
This seems to be what is happening with The Magnificent Seven (2016). I have NEVER seen as many Trailers for ANY Movie that has ever existed than what we see for The Magnificent Seven (2016). I’ve almost lost count, but I’d guess there’s about 15 so far!! Including recently profile Trailers for each of the Seven characters. 

That’s a bit scary.

Not necessarily an indication, but …

Trouble in the Industry

And there’s other things to fear. The Movie Industry has been taking some major hits in general. This summer nearly every anticipated Summer Blockbuster lost money. Millions – and Multi-Millions. They were scorched. And unfortunately for Film Makers, this is not just indicative of poor economy, but of radically changing Viewing Trends by audiences. I believe Home Theatres, large TV Screens, and easy access to movies on your TV via Netflix, Shomi, and other Entertainment services are deeply cutting into the Theatre market. And this is not just a flash trend – it will continue – and become even more so. The Theatres and Film Makers had better catch on quickly. Very quickly. We are living in an age where markets can radically change and swing overnight. Volatile.

Hopes

All this being said, I hope the New Seven is great. Though we all love the original Magnificent Seven  a Classic – and I have no expectations that this will match that, that doesn’t mean I wish any evil on this Remake. I like Denzel Washington and most of Cast are pretty decent.

We’ll just have to see …

THE MAGNIFICENT 7 2016 - poster 1 THE MAGNIFICENT 7 2016 - poster 2 THE MAGNIFICENT 7 2016 - poster 3 THE MAGNIFICENT 7 2016 - poster 4 THE MAGNIFICENT 7 2016 - poster 5 THE MAGNIFICENT 7 2016 - poster 6

The Magnificent Seven … 2016

20 Apr

Unless you’ve been under a log you’ve probably heard  about this Remake of The Magnificent Seven. |
So we have our first Trailers.
(brought to my attention by Tim Neath over at https://timneath.wordpress.com/) Thanks Tim!

Have a look …

Go ahead … say something.
I dare ya.

The Magnificent Seven 2016 … UPDATE

14 Sep

Denzel Washington – the Magnificent Seven Equalizer ??

“What do you see when you look at me?”

Yul Washington

“Oh, hell. If that’s all that’s holding things up, I’ll drive the rig.”
– Yul Brynner / The Magnificent Seven

Wikipedia: September 14, 2015 “The Magnificent Seven is an upcoming American Western directed by Antoine Fuqua, a remake of the 1960 western film of the same name. The film stars Denzel Washington, Chris Pratt, Ethan Hawke, Vincent D’Onofrio, Lee Byung-hun, Luke Grimes, Wagner Moura, Haley Bennett, Matt Bomer, and Peter Sarsgaard. Principal photography began on May 18, 2015, in the north of Baton Rouge, Louisiana. The film is set to be released on September 23, 2016.”

Denzel Washington gets the lead role of Chris formerly played by Yul Brynner in the 1960 film. I consider this to be a rather smart bit of casting. In my mind it completely circumvents the main problem of the remake: who are you going to cast that has enough Star Power who can measure up to Yul Brynner??! By choosing Washington – the black Superstar – for the the part it seems to approach the role from a completely different angle that deflects such judgements. Washington also has enough Star Power and acting chops to pull it off.

Despite having made plenty of Action movies in his career, this will be Washington’s first Western movie.

No trailers as of yet …

But what about the other 6 Sevens??

Well … here they are:

mag 7 2

mag 7 3

mag 7 4

Up to you to figure out who’s playing who … if indeed the former roles have any bearing. I think they will, but …

This is all I know so far.

I’ll try to keep an eye on things and hopefully we’ll have a preview trailer soon.

I still liked my own casting better:

Yul Brynner … TOM CRUISE

Brynner - Cruise

Steve McQueen … VIGGO MORTENSEN

Steve McQueen - Viggo Mortenson

James Coburn … GUY PEARCE

James Coburn - Guy Pearce

Charles Bronson … WILLEN DAFOE

Charles Bronson - Willem Dafoe

Robert Vaughn … BENEDICT CUMBERBATCH

Vaughn - Cumberbach

 Brad Dexter BRENDAN FRASER

Brad Dexter - Brendan Fraser

Horst Buchholz AARON PAUL

Horst Buchholz - Aaron Paul

Eli Wallach … ANTONIO BANDERAS

Eli Wallach - Antonio Banderas

… onward !!

 

 

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