A few weeks ago before the release of The Angry Birds Movie, I wrote about the lack of success video game adaptations have had on the big screen. Now, although I would not call The Angry Birds Movie a massive success, it has grossed over $280 million worldwide and will be profitable.
This weekend, the big budget special effect extravaganza Warcraft comes out and a lot of gamers will have to put down their controllers and come out to see it to make it profitable.
If you are unfamiliar with the video game series, it was created by Blizzard Entertainment and started as a fantasy real-time strategy game and then became a massive multiplayer online role-playing game (MMORPG), where many players have lost themselves in a virtual world.
Warcraft has also been turned into novels and other media. The movie portrays the initial encounters between humans and orcs in a fantasy realm known as Azeroth established by the videogame series. Because the videogame is inspired by The Lord of the Rings, expect a lot of similarity with the look and feel of the movies. And while it is not getting the same critical notices as its inspiration, expect a visual treat from its director Duncan Jones, who is not only the son of the late David Bowie, but also the vision behind movies like Source Code and Moon.
Three years ago, Now You See Me became a minor hit with the help of The Four Horsemen, a super team of the world’s greatest illusionists played by Jesse Eisenberg, Dave Franco, Mark Ruffalo, Woody Harrelson and Isla Fisher. Fisher has been replaced by Lizzy Caplan in the sequel and Daniel Radcliffe is also new to the cast but Morgan Freeman and Michael Caine are returning. Now You See Me 2 has the Four Horsemen forced out of hiding by a technology wizard (Radcliffe) who forces them to use all their skills to steal a priceless item. Like the first outing, it is getting middling reviews, but fans of the original should like another fast-pace story featuring twists and turns.
In The Conjuring 2, Patrick Wilson and Vera Farmiga are back as paranormal investigators Ed and Lorraine Warren. In this one, they travel to the north of London to help a single mother raising four children in a house plagued by malicious spirits. The first movie was a hit with both critics and audiences and this sequel is getting good reviews so if you are looking for a good scare this weekend, this if for you.
Fans of Jane Austin will want to check out Love & Friendship. Based upon her novella Lady Susan, it stars Kate Beckinsale as young widow Lady Susan Vernon who, along with her daughter, sets up temporary residence at her in-laws’ estate to wait out the colourful rumours of her dalliances. While there, she decides to secure a husband for herself and becomes matchmaker for her daughter as well. Look for it at the Grand 10 this weekend.