Podcast: 'Brave,' 'Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter' and 'Newsroom' Reviews

Plus an epic #GoodComments

Rope of Silicon PodcastI don't like to be egotistical, but I am feeling I have hit #GoodComments gold with this episode in which we also tackle reviews of Brave, Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter, Seeking a Friend for the End of the World and HBO's "The Newsroom" along with answering your questions, discussing the latest news and offering over/unders and all the other randomness we explore in each and every episode.

As always, I have broken down this episode on a minute-by-minute basis if you would like to skip ahead and below I have featured the information on how to download the podcast, find us on iTunes or merely just listen in your browser.

  • 00:00-2:42 - Introduction and NBA Finals talk
  • 2:43-5:02 - Brief show notes and addressing some listener comments
  • 5:03-14:29 - Thoughts on The Great Gatsby future prospects and Box Office Challenge update (chart at bottom of the post)
  • 14:30-19:52 - Talking about a few new television shows coming up -- "Nashville", "Last Resort", etc.
  • 19:53-22:48 - Rise of the Planet of the Apes screenwriters Rick Jaffa and Amanda Silver writing Jurassic Park IV
  • 22:49-24:35 - [Listener Question] What has been your most awkward movie experience with your parents? [Harry Fuertes]
  • 24:36-26:56 - [Listener Question] What is most excruciating movie scene you have ever endured that made you actually close your eyes or look away from the screen? And why did you do that? [Quickslay]
  • 26:57-29:07 - [Listener Question] I'm becoming very interested in Paul Thomas Anderson's work and I've only seen Magnolia and There Will Be Blood. What do you recommend I see next? [Harry Fuertes]
  • 29:08-31:41 - [Listener Question] Will another truly controversial and provocative film ever be made by a major studio? [Criterion10]
  • 31:42-35:23 - [Listener Question] Why is it that studios are spending huge amounts of money on big budget adaptions of comics and old tv shows (Speed Racer, Green Lantern, John Carter and The Lone Ranger for example) when it's known they're taking a huge risk with such material that people aren't familiar with. And should they have used a different media to promote the project before giving $200 million budgets to them? What are your thoughts? [Grissom]
  • 35:24-39:35 - [Listener Question] Have either of you every tried to create anything film-related, be it a short film, a screenplay, or what have you? Would you ever say you had the ability to create a good film if you had the necessary power and finances, or is film merely something you judge but could never successfully take part in yourself? [Mason Williamson]
  • 39:36-40:08 - [Listener Question] Can knowing just the premise spoil a movie? [Marlon Wallace]
  • 40:09-44:58 - [Listener Question] As a follow-up to Brad's piece on premium ticket prices for midnight screenings, will movie theaters eventually move to a model where they charge more for movies opening weekend and then subsequently charge less per ticket each week that has passed since a title has been released? [G-Man]
  • 44:59-46:47 - Random aside dealing with ads and the Internet and television
  • 46:48-54:50 - Over / Under
    • 75 percent for The Amazing Spider-Man on RottenTomatoes [Harry Fuertes]
    • 4 years until this podcast becomes widely known and is in the Top 30 in iTunes [Harry Fuertes]
    • .5 chance Dreamworks' Rise of the Guardians wins Best Animated Feature Oscar [Frank]
    • 3 more podcasts in a row Laremy casually mentions Evan Glodell or Bellflower (Which I am all for though since that is my favorite film from 2011) [Brian]
    • .5 chances Vince from Film Drunk is on the podcast this year? [kyle coley]
    • .5 chances prizes come back? [kyle coley]
    • .5 Chances that Inception is the best film Nolan will ever make [Sorkinfan]
    • 1.5 – number of times Laremy held Brad's hand during their screening of Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter (IMDB classifies it as "horror" with "violence throughout"). [G-Man]
  • 54:51-58:01 - #GoodComments (click here for the inspiration)
  • 58:02-1:00:23 - #GoodTweets - Laremy's egotistical Twitter thing
  • 1:00:24-1:05:26 - "The Newsroom" review (read my review here)
  • 1:05:27-1:06:04 - Seeking a Friend for the End of the World review (read my review here)
  • 1:06:05-1:11:13 - Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter review (read my review here)
  • 1:11:14-1:15:46 - Brave review (read my review here)
  • 1:15:47-1:24:42 - Brave Spoilers
  • 1:24:43-1:26:01 - Brief Prometheus spoiler conversation
  • 1:26:02-1:29:00 - Closing

Finally, I do have one quick request. If you could give us a review on iTunes it would be greatly appreciated.

You can listen below, on Stitcher, download the audio by right-clicking here and saving it to your computer or subscribe to the podcast on iTunes. It's up to you.

NOTE: Apple's iTunes randomly checks for updated episodes, so sometimes the latest episode may not be immediately available in iTunes.

You can find Laremy's writing here on RopeofSilicon.com and also at Film.com and on Twitter at @Laremy.

Summer Movie Box-Office Draft
Brad vs. Laremy

Laremy's Picks
MovieDateBudgetBox-OfficeCurrent Total
The AvengersMay 4$220m [*]$1.42 billion$873.2m
BattleshipMay 18$209m [*]$298.1m-$224.3m
Men in Black IIIMay 25$225m [*]$548.1m-$14.3m
Madagascar 3: Europe's Most WantedJun 8$145m [*]$309.5m-$52.9m
Rock of AgesJun 15$75m [*]$23.4m-$164m
Abraham Lincoln: Vampire HunterJun 22$69m [*] 
The Amazing Spider-ManJul 3  
The Bourne LegacyAug 3$90m [*] 
Total RecallAug 3$200m [*] 
The CampaignAug 10  
  $417.6 million
Brad's Picks
MovieDateBudgetBox-OfficeCurrent Total
The DictatorMay 16$65m [*]$134.8m-$27.6m
What to Expect When You're ExpectingMay 18$40m [*]$49.1m-$50.8m
Snow White and the HuntsmanJun 1$170m [*]$252m-$172.9m
PrometheusJun 8$130m [*]$239.1m-$85.8m
That's My BoyJun 15$70m [*]$20.3m-154.6m
BraveJun 22$185m [*] 
Ice Age: Continental DriftJul 13 
The Dark Knight RisesJul 20$250m [*] 
Step Up RevolutionJun 27  
The Expendables 2Aug 17$100m [*] 
  -$491.9 million

The Summer Movie Box-Office Draft competition involved both Brad and Laremy "drafting" ten films each in hopes of scoring the largest net total by taking a film's worldwide gross subtracting two-and-a-half-times the reported budget. The film must be released between the months of May-August 2012. The draft took place on May 4 during the RopeofSilicon Podcast which you can listen to right here.

Listed above is all the most recent data as of this post. Budgetary information is not necessarily accurate and will most likely not be accurate until closer to each film's release. I have include links to the source for eachbudget report and all box-office numbers come courtesy of Box-Office Mojo.


Who do you think will win the 2012 Summer Movie Box-Office Draft?

View Results

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  • Jonathan

    over/under .5 chances Monsters University sets a new low for Pixar films.

  • Racer X

    I'm sorry to hear about the passing of your father.

    It's great that The Heat came through for you and your pops (even though they beat my beloved Celtics in that last round).

    Nice job on the show.


  • Mikey Sylwer

    Do you guys use Google Chrome? And if so, have you installed "AdBlock"?

    • http://www.ropeofsilicon.com/ Brad Brevet

      Nah, I know businesses count on advertising to survive (I know I do) so I deal with it... I just like to complain.

      • Mikey Sylwer

        Mhm, gotcha.

  • Travis

    Here is Laremy's reference. I burst out laughing when he first did it:


    • raieven

      PS If you need someone to help out by editing the comments, over/unders, etc I'm happy to volunteer my time. :)

  • Rod

    When are you going to publish the William Freidkin piece?

    • http://www.ropeofsilicon.com/ Brad Brevet

      Closer to the film's release... though I may start releasing little bits here and there beforehand.

  • Snicket

    Brad I'm curious to know your thoughts on Anna Karenina. As a fan of Joe Wright myself I think he is one of the more talented directors out there (I would have died if he would have joined Hunger Games, but what respectable director would have?).

    However I can't help but feel disappointed to see him doing another period drama. Especially after doing something as different as Hanna I would love for him to explore those types of films a bit more. After Atonement and Pride & Prejudice I almost think he is wasting his potential revisiting this particular sub genre.

  • AS

    A couple of things:

    On the subject of Gatsby vs. Unchained, Gatsby will probably open bigger but Unchained will have better legs. In the end, Unchained will be the winner. I mean come on Brad, can you really see mainstream audiences coming out for a film set in the 20's (which also happens to be an adaptation of a literary classic)? That doesn't spell box office success. I really don't think the DiCaprio factor will matter that much (*cough* J. Edgar). Also, the visual flair of Gatsby isn't enough to bring the youth in. QT, on the other hand, is hipp with the youth. It's violent, which works in its favor, and it will probably score more Oscar noms than Gatsby.

    Could the film involving the killing of a pig be Michael Haneke's Benny's Video (1992)? It's the only movie I can think of in which a pig gets killed on screen.

    As far as The Girl Who Played with Fire is concerned, a couple months back Sony said that provided they could "achieve better economics" they would green-light the sequel. Although it's unlikely that Fincher would return to direct. The last news I heard about the film was that Sony was waiting to see how Dragon Tattoo performed on Blu Ray/DVD before making a decision.

    Finally, nobody buy's blu ray's at Barnes and Noble. They always sell they're stuff at retail price and the cost is ridiculous. I remember back in the day you had to pay as much as $30 for a non-special edition DVD! Amazon is where it's at. The average new release blu ray goes for around $19.99.

    • http://hypethemovies.wordpress.com Jordan B.

      Correct me if I'm wrong, but Django hypothetically is set even further back than the 1920's, if it is supposed to deal with slave plantations and such. So the setting/time argument is pretty much moot.

      As far as your point on the moviegoing crowd perhaps not caring for Gatsby because it is an adaptation of an iconic piece of American literature, I see what you are getting at, but this is where I think the Christmas release window helps Gatsby far more than Django: Gatsby is a movie that the family can see together during the holiday season. And while Django may be more "hip", I don't think it's violence will help it. Very few people care to see violence during the holidays. I brought up the example of Dragon Tattoo in the comments of Tuesday's podcast, and I think it's a pretty relevant comparison.

      Add to that the fact that quite a bit of the "hip" young crowd technically won't be allowed into Django because of it's R-rating, and that's why I think it'll be close but why Gatsby will ultimately triumph, in terms of box office.

      • AS

        I don't think the period setting will effect Django in a negative way because it's being marketed as a bloody and violent revenge thriller. That will appeal to the youth whereas Gatsby is a romantic drama. Sorry, but I just don't see a period piece about two aristocratic lovers scoring big.

        I agree with you that the families will go to see Gatsby over the Christmas holiday, but after that the 18-40 demographic is going to see Django (multiple times I predict). As far as the violence is concerned, I don't feel Dragon Tattoo is comparable. It all has to do with tone. The violence in a Tarantino film is supposed to fun and exciting. The violence in Dragon Tattoo (rape, torture) is supposed to be dark and disturbing. Both films are going for two entirely different tones and I think the box office will reflect this.

        As far as the hip crowed is concerned, by hip I should probably have said between the ages of 18-40. Kids below the age of 17 won't get into see Django, but I seriously doubt that they'll opt to see Gatsby instead.


  • http://djkai.tumblr.com/ Kai Sacco

    I've posted this a few podcasts ago but I figured it would be more relevant now since you guys talked about it today (Jurassic Park IV).

    [Listener Question]

    Brad, you mentioned that you think "Jurassic IV" should just be a reboot unless they can come up with an interesting idea for a sequel. What do you think of this hypothetical synopsis:

    History attempts to rewrite itself when a deadly prehistoric disease carried by the dinosaurs of Isla Nublar threatens to wipe out the entire human race.

    • http://kaisaccofilm.tumblr.com/ Kai Sacco

      Commenting again because I hyperlinked the wrong URL to my name. This is the correct one.

  • Chad

    Bradley! You guys got off topic rather quickly on the Great Gatsby. Do you think you can try to get into the topic of its translation from book to film again on a future episode?

  • raieven

    Jurassic Park IV? Hold onto your butts! (anyone? anyone?)

  • Drew

    Regarding best animated feature, what about The Pirates! Band of Misfits. Wallace and Gromit: The Curse of the Were-Rabbit won in 2005, where like The Pirates, it's competition included A Tim Burton directed claymation film, a Studio Ghibli film, and a Madagascar film.

  • Kristen K.


    We all know that studios like awards cause they are basically free publicity & proof that someone liked their movie. Which type of award do you think studios appreciate more: critical awards or fan-voted awards?

  • http://www.twitter.com/marlonwallace Marlon Wallace

    in response to G-Man's question about premium ticket prices, I was confused about Brad and Laremy's discussion. Both Brad and Laremy brought up video-on-demand and the business being better if studios made their movies available sooner but at higher prices perhaps, but didn't they try this with "Tower Heist"?

    Aren't there essentially two players: the studios (Disney, Warner, Sony, Universal and Fox) and the exhibitors (Regal, AMC, Carmike and Cinemark)? The studios tried to put out "Tower Heist" via VOD and the exhibitors were the assholes who blocked it, thus preventing any movie from being available via VOD immediately after or heaven-forbid during a movie's theatrical run.

    2929 Entertainment, which is both a studio (Magnolia Pictures) and an exhibitor (Landmark Theatres), is the only movie company that can release a movie via VOD and in theaters at the same time and have it not be a problem.

    Aren't the complaints about ticket prices and quicker VOD or DVD availability of movies traceable back to the battles between studios and exhibitors? Who are the bad guys between the two?

  • http://hypethemovies.wordpress.com Jordan B.


    50 - percent of high school English students who will go see The Great Gatsby over Christmas break as part of a school assignment

  • adu

    As far as the draft goes, you guys should automatically get Django (Leremy) and Gatsby (Brad). Considering your view on their respective success I think at least that part of the draft would be quite interesting.

  • the colleague

    Thanks for the Django love, AS. Now we're three. ;-)

    - CinemaScore Wars! Laremy's CinemaScore gives a higher rating to Magic Mike than the actual CinemaScore
    - C-Tates' abs beat Ted at the box-office
    - Ted underperforms and eventually ends up being the beginning of Seth MacFarlane's fall from grace

    It may seem like I'm hating on the guy, but I still enjoy Family Guy, even though it's not as good as the first few seasons. It just seems to me MacFarlane's shtick works quite good in a half-hour format, but could get tiresome in a full-length feature. I hope to be proven wrong, though.

  • Dj

    Hey brad don't sweat Brave Tangled had a 260 million dollar budget and made its money back.How about this for an awkward movie to watch with a parent, my dad rented the girl with the dragon tattoo (swedish one)and neither him or I knew about that graphic rape scene at least we were better prepared the second time around.

    • Lenano

      Talking about awkward experiences with Dragon Tattoo, when I went to see the American Dragon Tattoo, some couple in the theatre brought their little girl who was no older than 10 years old, because I guess a movie called "Girl With the Dragon Tattoo" sounded like a great family film for them. I was surprised that she didn't make a single peep throughout the entire movie, must have been too scared by the anal rape and violence.

      • Winchester

        I guess my bigger question would be how in the hell they missed the fact it was R rated.

  • Lukas Mix


    @ Laremy
    Now that you have opened the lid on your "movie career", you have to tell us more!

    1) Why didn't it come together? What happened?
    2) What was the story about (come on, I'm sure you copyrighted it ages ago so no one can steal it;-)
    3) What must happen that you pick it up again?

    Stay golden, boys

  • Lukas Mix

    One mo' thing:

    Regarding your "Biodome" experiment, could you put the movies you chose to review to a vote, Brad (maybe with a checkbox-system on the site?)

    And maybe you could supply a list of movies you haven't seen yet, but always wanted to.
    I love the interaction with you two and it would be cool if the listeners could choose.

    Thre more words: ONE EYED JACKS

    Stay golden, boys

  • D’Artagnan

    My friend and I realised that we tend to choose an entertaining film to watch over an 'artsy' film. So, inspired by what you are doing with films like Biodome, we choose a couple of films to watch, rate and discuss.

    But we had a big debate on what to use for rating: A,B...F v/s out of 10 v/s out of 5 stars.

    Listener Questions:
    - Is there any reason you chose A,B,C... for rating films?
    - Are there film adaptations that you think are better than the respective books
    - What movies that you love, would you prefer NOT spawning sequels?

    - 3 times on average Brad says "But that's the thing though" per podcast.

    I realised you say it a lot when I started saying it too. You ruined my LIFE! Thet's the TRUTH! :) I love Good comments!

  • Ben, formerly known as Bmac


    Many websites and "experts" including yourselves don't seem to think that Django is going to be big with the academy this year. Even though there are many potential great(Oscar) films coming out this year and Tarantino has his particular style of film making, Tarantino is still one of the top directors working today. Along with a great cast and crew, and the fact that his films have accounted for 16 nominations I feel that Django is a front runner along withe Lincoln, Les Mes., The Master and Argo.

  • G-Man

    Nice show, guys. Preliminary comments:

    - Laremy, so sorry to hear about your loss. Thoughts are with you and your family

    - Listener questions and over/unders are my favorite segments of the show and what draws me to look forward to every Tuesday and Friday. I think people enjoying feeling like they're part of the show and it would detract from the podcast if you guys cut down on them.

  • Nsf

    Cars 2 WAS crap, and its story was sure as hell no better than Brave's. Merida, at the very least, seemed to learn from her mistakes. You didn't get that at all with Mater's idiocy.

    Personally, I'd put Brave up there with the best of Pixar. Yes, its story is not as deep as that of Wall-E or Up's, but I never found it slow and I never found it tedious and I loved how even though it was obviously based in fairy tale myth Pixar still found a way to put their own little spin on it. It's also incredibly violent and intense in such a realistic way that you're really not sure if everyone's going to be ok at the end, which certainly makes this a lot more of a risk than everyone's giving Pixar credit for. I think they accomplished exactly what they set out to do with this film and I hope it's remembered as the ambitious, enjoyable effort it is. As far as I'm concerned, they're back with a vengeance now and the Cars franchise isn't fit to lick the boots of Brave.

  • Elijah

    I'm really glad you guys mentioned student films you made, screenplays, etc. I just graduated college and hope to get into cinematography/editing at some point, would you guys mind watching a couple and giving some input?

    Anyway got a couple questions:

    - Favorite/least favorite movie you've seen so far this year?

    - Opinions on video game narratives compared to film? Will interactive narratives become more popular than cinema in the next decade or two?

    - I know Drive was #1 on both of your Top 10 lists last year (myself included), but I have to admit I think it's a case of style over substance. I don't necessarily think it's always a bad thing to have a great aesthetic with a weak story, but any thoughts on films that are bashed for those reasons? Other examples I'd throw in: Avatar, The Artist, Kill Bill, etc.

    - I think the combination of 3D and IMAX can perfect first-person perspective in cinema and might be the best venue for 3D, what do you think?

    -Just finished Wrath of the Titans recently and my boyfriend noticed someone's dental crown in a close-up screaming shot that lasted a good 3-seconds (1:11:18 in case you desperately want to revisit that film). I know I shouldn't be looking for quality here and this is just a rhetorical question, but what the hell? Seriously Brad, seriously what the hell is this.

    Lastly go watch Princess Mononoke because it's fabulous.

  • Lenano

    I think Jurassic Park's effects have aged INCREDIBLY well, and really don't look too dated. I find those effects infinitely more believable than even some films made as recently as a few years ago.

  • Sorkinfan


    How do modern top-tier directors compare to classic top-tier directors in terms of power/quality/style?

    Who are some of the most underrated people currently working in the business?


    .5 Oscar Wins for Leonardo DiCaprio this year.

    5 Years until Joss Whedon becomes a major player.

    .5 career Oscar nominations for Sacha Baron Cohen(given that he seems to be trying to move to drama)

    .8 Chance that "The Bling Ring" is big for both Emma Watson's and Sofia Coppola's career.

  • G-Man


    Thanks for the book recommendations the other episode. As a follow-up, do you guys have any "must-read" movie books (by directors, overall about the industry, etc.) for someone looking to learn more?

    Buy / Sell:

    No new film will beat Gone With The Wind's adjusted for inflation domestic box office record (currently $1.6 billion), ever.

    Over / Under:

    5 - Number of major film studios that still independently exist in 2025. Currently 6 exist per Wikipedia's definition - WB, Paramount, Universal, Disney, Sony, Fox.