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tv   Talking Movies  BBC News  July 27, 2019 1:30pm-2:01pm BST

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lightning often triggers fires in the region but this year, they are lasting longer. this fire at grouse creek in alaska has been burning since the 10th ofjuly. so far, over two million acres of forest land have been scorched in the state. the temperature was much higher than the average, and also things like the soil moisture and the amount of precipitation is much lower than the average. what this means is it's much drier, much warmer, so when there is an ignition, then the fires have been able to persist and spread quite quickly, and endure. arctic fires are common between may and october, but higher temperatures, blamed on climate change, have meant the fires this year have been more intense. global satellites are now tracking a swathe of new and ongoing wildfires within the arctic circle. smoke is affecting large areas, engulfing some places completely. cities in eastern russia have noted a significant
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fall in air quality, with many people seeking medical help. translation: smoke is a horror. you're choking and feel dizzy because the smell of the smoke is very strong. the fires are releasing copious volumes of carbon dioxide, which scientists say will make our planet even warmer. that means wildfires like these will become even more common. ramzan karmali, bbc news. now it's time for a look at the weather with susan powell. good afternoon. i probably don't need to tell you about the heat way for us has now broken and we have for us has now broken and we have for sure weather for the rest of the weekend and into next week too. quite a showery weather to come. for some this weekend, a bit of a wash—out. that is if setting out to
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the north of scotland defeated you're the south—east. if it is weight with you now, that is the way it will stay. temperatures much lower than before. sunshine to the south—west and to the north—east. overnight, the front slot a little so overnight, the front slot a little $03 overnight, the front slot a little so a wetter data, for sunday 4 malvern island. still a muggy night, those in the mid teens, fresher than it has been. island, the best of the sunshine and the south—west, scotla nd sunshine and the south—west, scotland is looking drier but there could be thunderstorms around, hopefully we will see something drierfor hopefully we will see something drier for the hopefully we will see something drierfor the england. hopefully we will see something drier for the england. top temperatures at 22 or 23 celsius. hello, this is bbc. the headlines: prime minister borisjohnson pledges to fund a new high—speed rail route between manchester and leeds.
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president trump praises borisjohnson — and says talks on what he calls a "very substantial" us—uk trade deal are under way. the uk's biggest charitable funder of scientific research, the wellcome trust, says a no—deal brexit threatens the uk science industry. riot police fire tear gas at protesters in hong kong after tens of thousands march through the area where gangs attacked pro—democracy activists last weekend. gareth bale looks set to leave real madrid to join chinese club jiangsu suning, where the player will reportedly earn £1 millon a week. now on bbc news, talking movies reviews this year's blockbuster season — the highs and the lows. hello and welcome to talking movies. i'm tom brook.
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and today's programme we look back on blockbuster season, the hits and the misses, plus a special report on ageism in the movies. on my way, woody! the season's top three blockbuster heavy hitters have been a toy story sequel called toy story 4, and live action adaptation of aladdin, and a new spider—man film, spider—man: far from home. those films have been doing fantastic business around the world. of course, that doesn't mean each represents brilliant cinema. to explore blockbuster season in more detail, i'm joined by a panel of experts. tell me, if you look at the top films at the box office right now they're either remakes or sequels, has hollywood lost originality? i think they're desperate to make money so they're trying to fill seats. and we know that nostalgia is what drives people in, which is why i think really haven't
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gambled on anything too new right now. # prince ali. # mighty is he! # ali ababwa! it is significant to me that a lot of this summer's sequels and remakes are all rooted in... nostalgia. ..nostalgia from about 25 years ago, which is when most millennials were kids. so now millennials have their own kids and so there's an aspect ofjust bringing your kids to a movie you loved just feeling like a kid again. that's something we like to do in the summertime. i think all those things are how disney, in particular, and disney's properties are trying to capitalise on what they already are. but i do think it'll be a problem eventually. hello! hi! when you look at one of the films that's done really well, toy story, why has that held up as a sequel, do you think? you know, what i liked about the new story is that it was horrifying. it was a very disturbing vision of mortality, getting older, ceding your space and there was a generation,
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which i found incredibly dark and disturbing, which i found quite refreshing in a children's film. hi there, my name is gabby gabby! we can't stay. yes you can! there are a large number of films that haven't done well in blockbuster season, men in black, dark phoenix, godzilla: king of the monsters. what has gone wrong? are the films being poorly made? some of the ones you mentioned were poorly made. that certainly doesn't help. i do wonder how much of this year is the result of avengers: endgame coming out technically before blockbuster season or at the very beginning of it and when you start a season that's devoted to big movies with the biggest movie ever made it's really hard for anything else to compete with that. are you a queen? indeed she is. i pledge loyalty eternal to you! no, no, no, i'm not interested. too late. it's done. i already pledged the loyalty. i wish you'd said "no, no, no" before. by all accounts, men in black isn't that bad. do you think that audience tastes have changed that maybe two years ago that film
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would have done better? i think it would have. and i think pairing tessa and chris together was a really great idea and their charisma really sparkles on the screen. but for some reason this script did not hold together. and i think men in black is a quintessential will smith vehicle and without him there, without even a cameo, it was kind of like they could have really turned over the franchise in a way and it fell a little bit flat. it does sometimes feel like sequels come out because people think that the brand loyalty is there rather than the film loyalty. so some of the aspects of the film making a half baked. and there are people not really that loyal to the brand. they liked the movie but they can go home and watch the original. and they know this. so spending the money on a movie ticket is not valuable to them if the movie's not that good. can you tell me what your favourite film blockbuster season has been smacked i loved the lion king. i loved the lion king. i know i will get a lot of hate for that. because people absolutely hated it.
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but i love nostalgia and i think because disney didn't really do anything different — they switched out a couple of songs, gave us a few different voice actors to carry it. itjust made me feel really comfortable and like i was a child again so i loved it. an underrated or underappreciated movie i enjoyed the season was this little movie, this little horror movie called brightburn. which was kind of a fun play on superhero movies which are so prevalent now. and a horror movie as well. sort of imagining what if superman turned out to be basically a slasher villain. and i thought it was very creative and used the mythos of those characters and those creations in a very unique way. and i had a lot of fun, dark fun with that movie. some of my favourite films of you have come out in the last few months. the souvenir was one. the farewell. but i would say the one a keep thinking about is midsommar.
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which is a sort of terrifying, existential, two and a half hour dread—fest about, like, why you should never go to sweden with hippies or something like that. it is quite terrifying but also one that i've thought about a lot and have really enjoyed writing about it. i would second what you're saying about the farewell. that, to my mind, was a brilliant film. i mean, it's a film about a grandmother dying in china. it's one of the most inspirational films i have ever seen. it deals with chinese—american relationships, it's got beautiful acting, awkwafina is in it. you really get a good feel for it. anyway, i want to thank all of you for your very great contributions and it's been a pleasure to talk to you. thank you. blockbuster season used to offer movie—goers a fairly varied mix of movie fare. but no longer. many genres get pushed to the sidelines and finding a home and streaming services like netflix. noah has been looking
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at the migration. netflix has drawn attention away from the multiplexes this blockbuster season with a slate of films that represent genres hollywood studios used to love but have recently discarded. just leave my books alone. ok, just let me read. timber... this year, netflix‘s biggest movies are murder mystery, a comedy starring adam sandler and jennifer aniston and set in the french riviera. and the buzz—worthy always be my maybe, a rom—com starring and written by comic actors ali wong and randall park. both are in genres nowhere to be found at the multiplex. remind me why you never got together? there's way too much history there. so why do studios no longer make these type of movies? the top reason probably is because people don't watch them the way they used to. you know, they'll pay to go see something like avengers: endgame because they want to see it on the big screen.
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but nowadays people just aren't willing to pay for a comedy or something in that genre that they don't need to go to the theatre for. i need you to know that i... come on, marcus, no, no, no... the romantic comedy is definitely high on the list of genres viewers don't feel like they need to see in theatres. murder mystery and always be my maybe may have high entertainment value and big laughs, but the way they're shot makes them feel more like a tv sitcom than a movie. this is the sweet spot in which netflix operates. netflix is also discovering opportunities in other areas traditional hollywood has abandoned. while the movement for stronger representation for marginalised groups continues to grow, the major studios are only inching towards equality. netflix is leading the charge. i think you should branch out. make some new friends. nope. you never know what could happen. in the last year, netflix has produced two prominent rom—coms, both released during blockbuster season that feature asian—american talent.
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last year's to all the boys i've loved before and now always be my maybe. the latter is set in a city, san francisco, whose vibrant asian population has traditionally been left out of hollywood's offerings. the fact that they're all asian isn't necessarily the selling point or something that they have to keep hammering home. like that's not why specifically they made this movie, just happens to the fact, which is how it should be. it should be normalised. for many viewers, netflix‘s disruption of the studio's stranglehold on the blockbuster viewing season is long overdue. several tent pole movies flopped badly this season. but only time will tell whether netflix‘s new offerings are the future of blockbuster season orjust a welcome alternative to the blockbuster scene. i love the way you move onstage. one of the biggest film hits was the freddie mercury film bohemian rhapsody with rami malek playing the frontman. blockbuster season 2019 has seen
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a handful of music films. how do they compare with rami malek‘s efforts? well, tristan daly has been finding out. # and i think it's gonna be a long, long time. # ‘till touch down brings me round again to find... a few films this blockbuster season are leaning on the greatest hits of some iconic musicians, including rocket man, which centred on the peaks and valleys of eltonjohn‘s career, using his music is the soundtrack to his life. somehow i'm the only one that remembers the beatles. yesterday teased a fanciful premise, following the journey of a hapless musician who, after a bike accident, wakes up to find he is the only one in the wild remembers the beatles. since the world—famous english band never existed in this reality, he is able to pass their songs off as his own and finally become a star. have music films been a safe bet for the film industry this blockbuster season? i think music films have been an overly safe bet this season.
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yesterday, especially, given the excitement that greeted that trailer back in the first part of the year. it's not a movie that set audiences on fire. and i think there was something too complacent about it. i mean, if you're going to make a movie about the beatles now you really have to find an audacious angle. and i think yesterday is too much of a phoned in, feel—good movie. neither yesterday nor rocketman were able to come close to bohemian rhapsody‘s $900 million earnings. rocketman eschewed straightforward chronological storytelling and accuracy for a musical fantasy element and was generally well—received by critics. so why wasn't it able to replicate bohemian rha psody‘s success? eltonjohn has a different appeal. and rocketman was a different type of film. i think it required a certain cinematic palette to digest and to like. bohemian rhapsody was way more digestible in terms of the formatting and what we're used to seeing.
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while public opinion and even moreso numbers are important to studios during the season, not everything is measured in commercial terms. are these movies attempts at rebranding these iconic artists for today's audiences? yeah, i think these movies are very conscious of rebranding these artists, maybe almost in a market share way, but certainly for audiences who did not grow up with them. i think that's a big mistake. the movies need them more than they need the movies. hey dude? are you sure? # hey dude, dudey—dudey—dudey! though some might see this rebranding as unnecessary, others find it to be an insult to intelligence. critics have called out yesterday, asserting that the film's conceit that the beatles‘ songs would be instant hits in 2019 is absurd. it could be perceived as a stretch, because we've been seeing a lot of criticism of the beatles from a newer generation. there is a hot take that the beatles were trash. the most beloved band, people think they are just overhyped,
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received too much praise for what other artists, particularly black artists, have done in the past. i don‘t know if the beatles‘ entire catalogue would do as well in 2019, and i would pose the question... why would that question even be asked? # na, na na nananana... the beatles and eltonjohn won‘t be the last icons to have their work rehashed on the silver screen this blockbuster season. next month, blinded by the light will come to theatres, featuring the story of a teen in the 19805 in the uk featuring a deep connection with the work of bruce springsteen. as long as there is a collective memory and celebration of these musicians, film studios will continue to pull from their life and work to make an impact — and loads of money at the box office. it‘s like bruce knows everything i have everfelt, everything i‘ve ever wanted. when you review the box office
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takings of the studios during blockbuster season, you will see that disney has triumphed big—time. all the major box office hits — from aladdin to toy story 4 — are disney pictures. we thought it prudent to ask, is disney becoming too big in the land of the blockbuster? disney is now a true colossus. it recently acquired 21st century fox, this blockbuster season the company has about 35% of the market share of the domestic box office. what disney owns is just mind—boggling. they own marvel studios, they own lucasfilm, they own pixar, they now own fox, they own all the marvel movies, the star wars movies, indiana jones, toy story, anything under pixar, with fox they have the x—men and deadpool, it is a conglomerate that hollywood has never seen before. having such a large slice of the movie—making business in one pair of hands can stifle competition. other voices without the financial
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heft of disney can get shut out. disney carved out significant control over the release schedule. other studios can‘t and don‘t want to compete with a disney blockbuster, so as soon as disney stakes out a claim to a specific weekend, all the other studios flee, and that has really compressed the schedule and made it a lot more difficult for other franchises to get off the ground. in every decade, there has always been concern about a few select companies consolidating power, to the fear of everybody. but every so often an innovation comes along, and upends the status quo. so for now i think disney is doing its best to capitalise on the market as currently constructed. and i don‘t think that makes disney a bogeyman, whether it be real or perceived threats that we might be attaching to their success. bogeyman or not, many critics feel uneasy over disney‘s growing penetration of the movie industry. disney does tell many different stories, but its films often paint
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the world in the same way. the commonality of disney storytelling has a lot to do with how we see society in a positive light, how resilience, fighting for a common cause can lead to change, how individuality can really make a difference, it is almost like the more they tell the same story, the more they are reinforcing stories and values that have been taken for granted for generations. that‘s not a bad thing, is it? i wouldn‘t say disney is necessarily a bad thing in terms of the stories that it pushes on us, but i do think that disney doesn‘t encourage us to see the risks in life, and to understand the world in a more nuanced way, and that is where the value of art that isn‘t disneyfied really comes into play. but such subtleties are not the concerns of the average movie—goer. this blockbuster season, disney films will generate a worldwide gross of some $5 billion
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at the box office. the audience of blockbusters is relatively young, since they fill up auditoriums, what happens to older people seeking alternative entertainment? well, they get pushed to the margins. but perhaps for not much longer, because older people are asserting their cinema rights. emma jones reports. it‘s no country for old men or women. hollywood belongs to the beautiful and the glamorous, and traditionally age has been ruled as neither. even george clooney, halfway through his 50s, said he would do less on camera as he got older because of audience expectations. i think nobody really wants to see anybody really age. it is a very unforgiving thing, the camera, so ageing becomes something that you, you know, you try to do less and less on—screen, you try to pick the films that work best for you, and as you age,
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they become less and less. the idea that getting older is unattractive filters down into what audiences get to see. in the biggest blockbusters of the year, actors in their 40s and 50s do get to take part in action heroism, but the constant refrain, especially in the case of one tom cruise, age 57, is that they look 20 years younger. an analysis from 2016 of 2,000 hollywood blockbuster scripts discovered that only 3% of dialogue was spoken by women over the age of 65, 5% by men. studio movies can make the elderly seem like a special interest category, even when they are financially successful. ah, there you are! good as new. really? no, of course not. the best exotic marigold hotel from 2011, and 2013‘s last vegas, where the cast had a combined age of 281, made more than $100 million each at the box office.
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picture house in the uk runs on something called silver screen where older people get together and watch films together, at a reduced price. but why has cinema for his age group been considered niche? because we know that studios are run, and have been run by men of a certain age, who think that the only audiences that want to see films are 15—year—old boys, or older men. i mean, we as a distribution company released the wife with glenn close, which was a perfect example of an older woman at front and centre of a story, and when we bought that film we know that certain studios had passed on buying that film, because they thought it was a niche audience. women traditionally have it even tougher than men when it comes to getting representation on screen at any age. french actressjuliette binoche, herself in her 50s, recently starred
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in who you think i am, as a woman who creates a false identity on facebook of a twentysomething because of a fear of ageing. binoche thinks the media focuses far too much on numbers. in an article, usually the presentation of the journalists would be to give the age of the person. so the mindset of people, the way they read the magazines, it is a way of putting age in the first kind of thing in their head. i think it is a mindset that the society is giving us. you are fired, you're fired obviously. you must be mccreary? oh wow. you're fired. however emma thompson, who in late night plays an abrasive talk show host threatened with job loss due to her age, says her experience has been different. no, 40s actually was a bit bald as an era, 50s and 60s has been great.
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so it depends who you are and whether you can support yourself in other ways during a bald patch, and so i will say to women, there is always going to be bald patches because this is how it is, so get writing, or do something else, if you are an actor you can probably do other things too. or of course actors could go to tv, which is, according to diana rigg, doing much better. the actress who played the only womanjames bond ever married in on her majesty‘s secret service, recently had the role of a lifetime as olenna tyrell in hbo‘s game of thrones when she was in her mid—70s. in terms of ageism, would you say television has given you opportunities maybe more recently in your career? oh, undoubtedly. film is terribly ageist. television doesn‘t care, whatever age you are, as long as you are right for the part. and there are a lot of old ladies, thank goodness, on television.
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yeah. the reality is as ideas about ageing transform across society, the film industry will have to change too. after all no—one is going to tell brad pitt, age 55, that he‘s now done. and if christopher plummer can get an oscar nomination in his late 805, for all the money in the world, then surely it signals for the industry that everyone‘s best work can come in the final act. well, that brings this special blockbuster edition of talking movies to a close. we hope you‘ve enjoyed the show. please remember you can always reach us online at, and you can find us on facebook too. so from me, tom brook, and the rest of the talking movies production crew here in new york city, it is goodbye, as we leave you with some music from that blockbuster the lion king. # it‘s the circle of life... # and it moves us all...
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# to despair and hope... # through faith and love # till we find our place # on the path unwinding # it‘s the circle...# good afternoon. our heatwave has outlawed its way out and do we kane is looking much fresher. we have a weather front currently parked up stretching from north to south across the uk which will not move
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anywhere and any great hurry. thursday looks like it could be the hottest day ever recorded in the uk, waiting for that record to be verified now with a high of —— 30 8.7 degrees in the botanic gardens at cambridge university. looking different this afternoon, that is thanks to this weather front. it is stretching up the entire length of the uk but some spots are winning out towards the worse, northern ireland, south—west and join some afternoon sunshine. nothing. in doing well with shetland. quite breezy across the uk. it is probably going to rain for much of the day as it is raining now. temperatures capped at 19 or 20 celsius, perhaps 23 in the best of the sunshine. watch the front carefully and you
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might notice it is slumping into northern ireland through the course of the night, some with her weather arriving for sunday where scotland will become somewhat drier. still quite a muggy night, temperatures in the mid—teams and quite misty for parts of scotland as the rain pulls away. for sunday, the prospect of brighter conditions for parts of scotla nd brighter conditions for parts of scotland but look out for thundery showers later in the afternoon. the south—west could still see some sunshine, still got some rain across parts of northern england, the midlands and into the south—east. top temperatures for sunday afternoon, perhaps 23 or 2a celsius. looking into next week, low—pressure feeding in from the atlantic, quite a deep feature running in three monday and tuesday. it will be quite windy, especially to the south and some of the coasts, not great for some of the coasts, not great for some of the holiday resorts here. pretty showery conditions on tuesday
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and wednesday. things could come down by thursday and friday as that pleasure tries to build in a somewhat. cooler add more showery than we have had of late.
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this is bbc news. the headlines at 2:00pm. prime minister borisjohnson pledges to fund a new high—speed rail route between manchester and leeds. it‘s time we put some real substance into the idea of the northern powerhouse rail. that‘s why we‘re here this morning. we want to inject some pace into this so that we can unlock jobs and boost growth. president trump praises borisjohnson — and says talks on what he calls a "very substantial" us—uk trade deal are under way. the uk‘s biggest charitable funder of scientific research, the wellcome trust, says a no—deal brexit threatens the uk science industry. riot police fire tear gas at protesters in hong kong after tens of thousands march through the town where gangs attacked pro—democracy activists last weekend. gareth bale looks set to leave real madrid to join chinese


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