Thursday, January 15, 2015

I'm Dreaming of a White Oscars

What does Stephen Hawking, the godfather of computer science, a hotel manager breaking out from prison during the first World War, a young boy and his family growing up through 12 years and the battle of wills between a aspiring musician and his near-abusive professor have in common? On the surface, these are different films ranging in different subjects. But when you look at the people who stared, wrote and directed these various movies, A few patterns begin to emerge:

1. The cast is predominately white.

2. The story mostly centers on a male protagonist.

3. The filmmakers behind the project are white and male.

And all of those films I've mentioned: The Theory of Everything, The Imitation Game, The Grand Budapest Hotel, Boyhood and Whiplash - have all been nominated for Best Picture for this year's 87th annual Academy Awards.

Before I go any further, I just want to say that this is not an attack on the films themselves. Most of the films mentioned I really enjoyed and deeply admired. My frustrations are being laid out to on the Academy members themselves, who simply didn't include any persons of color or gender to this year's nomination ceremony.

Let's start with the most egregious snub of all, Best Director:

Wes Anderson - The Grand Budapest Hotel
Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu - Birdman or (The Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance)
Richard Linklater - Boyhood
Bennett Miller - Foxcatcher
Morten Tyldum - The Imitation Game

In the 87 year-history of the Academy, there has never been a woman of color nominated for Best Director Oscar. There have only been four female directors to have been nominated for the honor: Lina Wertmuller in 1978 for Seven Beauties; Jane Campion in 1993 for The Piano; Sofia Coppola in 2003 for Lost in Translation; and Kathryn Bigelow in 2009 for The Hurt Locker; the latter of which finally broke over and won the prize. Simply put: a black woman has never been nominated for the prize, and the Acadey could have made history by nominating Ava DuVernay's brilliant, urgent, angry and hopeful civil rights drama Selma. I say this, not because she is a woman of color and therefore, should be included, but because her direction was more than worthy to be nominated for the award. Yes, she took some historical liberties detailing the relationship between Dr. King and President Lyndon Baines Johnson when it came to the Voting Rights Act of 1965, but then again, all directors have to take certain liberties to fit a dramatic narrative. Without conflict, there is no drama, period. Spielberg took liberties with Schindler's List, and he wasn't brutally attacked people people who outright said that the film should be banned from awards season. Hell, if any one of the four directors had done what DuVernay had done, the outrage wouldn't be as bad or as loud as it was. I'm happy for Bennett Miller getting in, but if the choice came to Tyldum and DuVernay, the clear choice would be DuVernay. Extremely disappointing Oscar couldn't see it.

Now, onto Best Actor:

Steve Carrell - Foxcatcher
Bradley Cooper - American Sniper
Benedict Cumberbatch - The Imitation Game
Michael Keaton - Birdman or(The Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance)
Eddie Redmayne - The Theory of Everything

I get this has been another competitive race for five slots, but again, I feel Oscar fucked up. Did they not see David Oyelowo's transformative and magnetic performance as Dr. King and not think "this one's a no-brainer - lock him up for Best Actor!"? It might have been an uphill battle to knock off Keaton, but hell, it would have been an excellent inclusion. And let's just ignore Chadwick Boesman's terrific performance as the Godfather of Soul in the musical biopic Get on Up, because, sadly, not enough people bothered to watch it. I like Bradley Cooper, but are you fucking kidding me??? Same with Redmayne, but that's just I feel Theory is the most overrated movie to come out of Awards season, and it sucks even more that Jake Gyllenhaal got snubbed for his career-best performance as creepy sociopath Lou Bloom in Nightcralwer. 

Best Actress:

Marion Cotillard - Two Days, One Night
Felicity Jones - The Theory of Everything
Julianne Moore - Still Alice
Rosamund Pike - Gone Girl
Reese Witherspoon - Wild

All I'm going to say on the matter is this - Gugu. Mbatha. Raw. They probably haven't heard of her, despite having a huge breakout year with two excellent films in Belle and Beyond the Lights.

In fact, if you go down the list of Supporting Actor and Actress, you'll notice one disturbing pattern: there isn't a person of color anywhere. In fact, it hasn't been this whitewashed since 1995. Despite living in 21st century America, where minorities are making strides, having more serious conversations about domestic violence, feminism and gender equality, etc, it's troubling that the Academy simply doesn't reflect what's going on in our society, due to being stuck in what they like as films and as art, or because they simply have their collective heads shoved up their ass.

Wednesday, January 7, 2015

Don't Be Like This Guy.

It's a new year for yours truly, and what better way to kick things off...than to bring up Hollywood Elsewhere, again. This time I'm not talking about Jeff Wells or whatever dick head-ish thing that came out of his mouth, but rather an experience I've just encountered on the HE site.

I make it no secret that I'm a bit of a fanboy. I love what Kevin Feige has done with Marvel superhero properties like Iron Man, Thor, Captain America, S.H.I.E.L.D. and have them connect in various ways in their movies, creating a shared universe. I'll be the first to see the latest endeavor by Martin Scorsese, Quentin Tarantino, Paul Thomas Anderson, and David Fincher, among other respected and celebrated filmmakers because I love their work. I'm always excited for Oscar season as much as I'm excited to see the summer's slate of popcorn blockbusters. I have my individual tastes, and I hate it when a judgmental snob tells me that my taste sucks, or in this case, I'm less of a man for it.

AvatarAnd the stupification of America continues. What adult man with reproductive abilities and a full set of responsibilities would even bother to go to a theater to watch this?
And no, Devin Faraci does not count as a man just because he's covered in hair.
AvatarI don't know why I find this hilarious, but I do.
You're seriously questioning the masculinity of someone who's into superhero flicks and/or geek culture? Holy faux outrage Batman; the self-righteous hyperbolic outrage is off the charts!
And if you can't stand the superhero trend now? Just wait until Hollywood figures out how to make a decent adaptation of a popular Manga or Anime...
AvatarYeah, I am questioning the masculinity of men who are excited for a live action film about a miniature superhero who can speak to ANTS. No matter what psychological/emotional subplots you graft onto the story, it's still fucking STUPID.
AvatarOh, tell me, Mr. Manly-Man, how do I regain my masculinity from daring to have individual taste in films and popular culture that obviously doesn't jive with your standards on how a REAL MAN enjoys movies and entertainment!!! Come on, good sir; throw this lowly emasculated peasant a bone!
Fuck you, and the high horse you rode in on, you condescending prick.

I simply have zero tolerance for film snobs like "Anonymous By Force" who look down on other folks simply because they enjoy something you don't care for, or outright hate. I think Michael Bay is a shitty filmmaker, but I'm not going to call out someone if they enjoyed Armageddon or the Transformers movies. I think Terrence Malick and Baz Luhrman are hacks, but the same thing applies: if you like something, fine. You like it. I'm not going to attack you for your tastes simply because I don't like it. I'm certainty not  going to lower myself by calling out one's masculinity like this douchebag. We have enough judgmental folks out there who are so insecure with themselves that they have to define or re-define what it means to be "a man" or determine one's place gender-wise because it makes themselves feel at peace.

Wednesday, December 31, 2014

So This Is the New Year...

Tonight, as the seconds tick by until the arrival of 2015 (Or maybe it's already arrived wherever you are reading this), I'd like to share my favorite song that has to deal with, well...the beginning of the new year. 

It's by Indie rock group Death Cab for Cutie, and they've been one of my favorite groups since Senior year of high school when I bought Narrow Stairs on iTunes, and I've been a fan since. I love that it's a melancholic song about the biggest non-even of the year and how Ben Gibbard wants to pretend "that we are wealthy, for just this once," on this one night. The song "The New Year" is the opening track off the band's third record, Transantlanticism, which is an incredible record in of itself, including "Sound of Settling," "Title and Registration," and the title track itself, so definitely seek this song out, as well as the rest of the record, because it's worth the listen.

I also want to take the time and thank the following people:

First, a big thank you to my mother, for installing a love of the cinema in me when I was a young kid. From drive-ins, to watching Turner Classic Movies on weekends, I am a lover of the medium because of you.

Second, a huge thank you to the people who inspired me for even starting this blog: Sasha Stone and Ryan Adams of Awards; Anne Thompson of Thompson on Hollywood; Kristopher Tapley of Hitflix; Mathew Buck, Brad Jones, Lindsay Ellis and Doug Walker of Channel Awesome. I wouldn't have the courage to start writing if it wasn't for your inspiration. 

Third, to Craig Kennedy of Awards Daily TV. It was a shot-lived gig, contributing to your realm, but it was well-worth taking, even if it was for a moment. I got to talk to some amazing writers, Joey Moser, Clarence Moyer and Megan "Spitfire" McLaclan, and I feel I've gotten better since my departure. You, good sir, are awesome.

Fourth, to the new people I've talked to on social media about the movies: Al Robinson, Robin Write, Ian, Tina K., and Steve S. Again, you guys rock.

Lastly: I'd like to thank you. 

Yes, you.

Thank you for reading, commenting, and simply hearing what I had to say. Sure, it wasn't much, but thank you nonetheless, and I assure you I plan to talk more about the movies in 2015.

Happy New Year, and thanks again for reading.

Wednesday, December 17, 2014


I was looking forward to watching the James Franco/Seth Rogen comedy The Interview on Christmas Day, even more so than Angelina Jolie's WWII drama Unbroken, or Rob Marshall's Into the Woods. I like what the writing and directing duo of Rogen and his pal Evan Goldberg have done with comedies like Superbad, Pineapple Express and their debut feature, This Is the End. In light of Sony being hacked (which now appears to be North Korea's doing) and threats of attacking theaters that carry the comedy, three things happened today:

1.) Every major theater chain - AMC, Regal, Cinemark, Arclight, etc, had decided to pull out from showing The Interview on its scheduled release date.

2.) This prompted Sony Pictures to basically cancel the release date of the film amid threats of blowing up theaters.

3.) Both Sony and the theater chains basically caved into the demands of cyber terrorism from North Korea.

Are you fucking kidding me?

We just caved into terrorist demands from a country that can't feed its own people, let alone firing off missiles without crapping out mid launch? I hate sounding like some right-winger, but come on! A major studio gave into the demands of a crackpot dictator and wannabe megalomaniac, with their tails tucked between their collective legs. And I'm certain Lil' Kim is just having a laugh about this right now. Unbelievable.

Tuesday, December 16, 2014


There is a fantastic scene in The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies that has nothing to do with the battle itself. We see Thoirn Oakenshield (Richard Armitage) walking across the halls of Erabor, the halls itself covered in solid gold. He has a vision of himself sinking to the abyss of the halls that have melted down to liquid, screaming and crying out for help, but only sinking faster. The last time we left his company, they had driven the dragon Smaug out from under the Lonley Mountain, but let him loose on the people of Lake Town. The son of Thrain, son of Thorn has his home again, but has gone mad with greed over the treasure. The pissed off former residents of the town, led by Bard (Luke Evans), along with King Thranduil (Lee Pace) demand he honor his promise to share in the wealth of the Mountain, or else they'll reign Elvish arrows down on his ass. Blinded by his greed, his own company begins to turn on him, including Bilbo Baggins (Martin Freeman) who tries to make a deal with the leaders of the Men and King of Mirkwood  in order to get him to listen to some sense. The scene in question is simple, but well-acted by Armitage, because we're allowed to see just how much his greed and stubbornness has affected all those around him. I also think it's an excellent metaphor for what's become of director, co-writer and producer Peter Jackson.

The original Lord of the Rings trilogy was a spectacle in its own right, but the original trilogy never forgot what made the journey of the Fellowship so compelling: the individual stories of the members themselves. Jackson paid as much attention to how much of a mental and emotional toll the burden Frodo Baggins was carrying as he and Samwise Gamgee made their way to the darkness of Mordor to destroy the One Ring, as he did to the practical and visual effects. He remembered that Aragon's story of how he has to come to grips with being the rightful King of Gondor and being a leader of Men was just as important as staging the Battle of Helm's Deep. Simply put: he never forgot that the story, the character's personal dramas and arcs were just as important as wowing the audience at the sheer size, scope and clear vision of bringing J.R.R. Tolkien's world to vivid life. And it's painfully, abundantly clear that he's forgotten that crucial aspect in his prequel trilogy; none more so in the final chapter to his Middle-Earth saga, and in his films following the conclusion of Return of the King.

The titular battle between Elves, Men, Dwarves, Orcs and Goblins, as promised, is a 45-minute spectacle of CG carnage, swords clashing, shields smashing and well-executed choreography.And believe me: you feel every last minute of it, to the point where you just stare at the effects and wonder to yourself, 'when does it end?' Sure there are breaks in the action, but they feel few and far between. And even-though it runs at 2 hours and 24 minutes - the shortest of the Middle-Earth saga, it still feels like we've been in the theater for longer than that. The battle itself isn't even that impressive, because the wow factor he had when we saw an army of Uruk-hai march on the Hornburg, or seeing King Theoden march his Riders of Rohan to the fields of Pelennor at the point is long gone.

Walking away from tonight's 7:00 p.m. showing of The Battle of the Five Armies made me feel something that I've never felt before with the other Lord of the Rings movies: that I was glad that it ended.

** stars out of ****

Monday, December 15, 2014

Everything Isn't Awesome: The Top 10 Worst Films of 2014

It's that time of year again! The time where critics, amateurs and everyone in between start compiling and evaluating the year that was in film and come up with lists that say whether this was a great year at the multiplex, or one we can and should delete from our collective memory banks. For me, the year was when I personally avoided crap that I knew would be dreck, like the Adam Sandler/Drew Barrymore reunion from The Wedding Singer/50 First Dates days romantic flick Blended, or sequels I hated the first time and wanted no part in again with The Purge: Anarchy. That still doesn't mean I could escape bad or uninspired filmmaking, because eventually, when you're a movie junkie like myself, you do eventually run into some really awful crap. Today, I'm taking it to the movies that made me suffer; the ones I only have to re-visit because they're on TV and there's no other option available to me.

10. The Giver - This half-baked film adaptation based on the award-wining novel of the same name y Lois Lowry isn't the worst movie I've seen in the slew of young-adult books/turned films craze, but speaking as a fan of the original source material, it does hold the (dis)honor of being the most disappointing, because it really could, and should, have been more that what was assembled. Lowry's tale of a young boy being forced to grow up quickly when he is selected to become the Community's next Receiver of Memory was a thought-provoking meditation on identity and conformity. Phillip Noyce (along with The Weinstien Company) take the themes and injects them with Sameness in this adaptation, making it as generic as possible. Brenton Thwaites as Jonas and Odeya Rush as Fiona are miscast in their roles, while Oscar-winners Jeff Bridges (who served as one of the producers on this film) and Meryl Streep mail in their performances, no doubt waiting for something better to come along.

9.  The Amazing Spider-Man 2 - This sequel to 2012's reboot of the wall-crawling crimefighter was supposed to kickoff a shared film universe where Peter Parker (played once again by Andrew Garfield) squares off against the Sinister Six (which consisted of Electro, the Green Goblin, Vulture, Doc Ock, Rihno and Kraven the Hunter); even including spinoffs where we meet members of the villainous group wreaking havoc around New York City. All Marc Webb did was suffer from Tim Burton Syndrome, where the most interesting characters - Jamie Foxx as a superfan of Spider-Man before Oscorp turned him into a vengeful ball of electricity, and Dane DeHann as Harry Osborn, Pete's childhood friend who needs him to get Spider-Man to give him his blood to counteract a genetic disease that will kill him - are the film's antagonists, and where the the hero is the least interesting thing about the whole thing. This bloated and overstuffed superhero film only serves to prove that Spider-Man would have been in better hands with Marvel Studios and Kevin Feige than with Sony and Avi Avid.

8. Into The Storm - "Hey; you loved disaster movies like Twister, The Day After Tomorrow and 2012, and you went out and made the found-footage sub-genre a hit with the the Paranormal Activity series; so let's combine both styles and watch the money roll in!" I wasn't sitting in on the pitch meetings when screenwriter John Swetnam was selling the project to Warner Bros. and New Line Cinema, but I wouldn't be shocked if that's how the film was sold. Either way, he and the studios were wrong: It tries to be Jan De Bont's 1996 cult hit for the You Tube age, but it lacks the genuine thrills, excitement and overall star power & charisma that disaster thriller had. The visuals are absolutely top-notch, but there's not much else going for it: the acting is so one-dimensional that calling the performances by Richard Armitage, Nathan Kress and Sarah Wayne Callies wooden doesn't do it justice; the script is just a jumble of tired cliches; and the direction is extremely haphazard, as the camera switches back and forth between the POV-centered narrative to the third-person one, until the former is nearly abandoned in the third act. Instead of a whirlwind of a good time, we're left with one big mess.

7. A Million Ways to Die in the West - Personally, I didn't want to put this comedy on my list, but upon watching it a second time, director and co-writer Seth MacFarlene left me with no alternative. This second-rate Blazing Saddles knockoff just wasn't that funny the second go-around, and it's a shame because I generally like the man's comedic style. Speaking of, the jokes round back to the the theme that living out in the Old West sucks, and it got annoying to hear the same joke being repeated again and again, albeit in different forms. The only time the humor really kicked in is when Charlize Theron rolls into the small Arizona town as a woman escaping from her ruthless, gunslinger hubby (played by Liam Nesson) and begins to hang out with MacFarlene's character, mostly because the pair have decent comedic chemistry, making the jokes more palpable. Oh, and Neil Patrick Harris's involvement as a mustache-obsessed dick is a downright embarrassment, considering that he gives his best performance of his career in Gone Girl, and the fact he defecates in several hats for the sake of a gross-out gag.

6. Divergent - Shaileen Woodley tries her best to be a Katniss Everdeen-type heroine in this knockoff Hunger Games series opener (the sequel, Insurgent, is slated to come out in March of next year), and Kate Winslet does good work as the villain who wants to control the five factions that have been set up after human civilization goes tits up, but the script is too dull and borrows heavily from the former, along with threads from the "Harry Potter" series and Lois Lowry's "The Giver" to the point where one can spot the points where originality ends and where the near-plagiarism begins.

5. About Last Night - I'll be frank here: I cannot stand Kevin Hart. I don't find him funny, I can't, for the life of me, see his appeal as a comedic actor or as a stand-up comedian, and in a year that brought us breakout stars like Gugu Mbatha-Raw and Chris Pratt, I find it depressing this unfunny hack found his way through. I could pick anything from his catalog of movies this year (Ride Along, Think Like a Man Too), but I'm going with the terrible remake of the 1976 David Mamet play, Sexual Perversity in Chicago and retelling of the 1986 film of the same name. About Last Night is supposed to be a funny and introspective look at how men and women perceive relationships, but it doesn't have anything new or interesting to say. Worse yet, the couplings are either extremely dull or endlessly irritating to watch onscreen for more than 2 minutes. Michael Early and Joy Bryant are attractive leads, but he script doesn't give them anything to do except be madly in love or glum when they go through a rough patch; whereas Hart and Regina Hall are simply insufferable as comic relief and two stuck in a love-hate relationship. Making this even worse is that this was produced by Will Packer, the producer who, to his credit, casts predominately black actors in his films, but can't manage to get good scrips for his actors to work with, and this film was no exception. Unfortunately, he wasn't done yet this year...

4. No Good Deed - What happens when you combine the talents of British actor Idris Elba and Oscar nominee Taraji P. Henson, & put them in the home invasion thriller setting? You end up with a terrible and thrill-less movie that wastes both of Elba's and Henson's time and acting abilities. Yet another Will Packer production, this one reminds me of the last time he and Elba collaborated on a thriller, the equally stupid 2009 flick, Obsessed, except that movie had a fun showdown between Beyonce Knowles and Ali Larter. Sure, Elba uses his charms and plays them against type as a sociopath murder, but that's really the only thing it does right.The rest of the film is so hopelessly cliched - from the dark and stormy night atmosphere, to the cat-and-mouse chase between he and Henson - that is simply removes any and all suspense, because we know where this film is heading almost 15 minutes in. I support folks like Packer and Tyler Perry making projects that include mostly black actors, but I wish these films had better scrips and gave the actors more to do than just rehash situations and set pieces we've seen in better movies.

3. God's Not Dead - Not since the misguided and one-sided religious schlock fest that was 2011's Last Ounce of Courage have I seen a more blatant Christian propaganda film about how the faith is under attack from atheists and liberals; but at least with the former, it was poorly-made and often unintentionally hilarious. It would be one thing if just stuck to the already ludicrous premise of a freshmen college student (Shane Harper) going up against the big, bad atheist meanie (TV's Kevin Sorbro) about the existence of God, but it also goes the extra distance of painting everyone else - liberals, atheists, even Muslims - as jerks who need a come-to-Jesus moment and accept God into their hearts, while borrowing the interconnected characters and subplots scenario from P.T. Anderson's Magnolia. It's not just bad filmmaking, it's insulting to the audience.

2. Transformers: Age of Extinction - Sure, there's a new cast - Mark Walhberg as a down on his luck inventor who takes in a battered Optimus Prime, Stanley Tucci as a Steve Jobs-like tycoon who's building Transformers using "transformium" for the government, and Kelsey Grammar as the bureaucratic CIA man who's double-dealing with the Decepticons, but it's still Michael Bay at the helm and Ethan Kruger screenwriting at the end of the day. This latest update to the Transformers series is just the same ting we've paid to see the first three times - just louder, longer, dumber, more incomprehensible and crammed in with more product placement than before. I take that back: It's now shamelessly reaching out to the Asian market to boost it's international gross!

My pick for the worst of the year has been inspired by Channel Awesome's resident music critic, Todd in the Shadows. See, he defines the worst song of the year by it being the absence of good, and this year, I'm taking a page from his book. I'm picking the film that rewards the least; the one that I got nothing from, except for how Hollywood can treat young moviegoers, like myself, as idiots, and make a shitload of money passing off shallow and pretentious crap off as depth.

1. The Fault In Our Stars - If you listen carefully, you can hear William Shakespeare turning furiously in his grave (the title is taken from a line from his play, The Tragedy of Julius Caesar), and the Hollywood Suits laughing rancorously at us to the bank. I know this movie has an 80% rating on Rotten Tomatoes, a metascore of 69 on Metacritic, and millions of teen girls flocked to this film and cried near the end. And I could care less. I hated this film. I hated how pretentious it felt and sounded when Augustus Waters (Ansel Egort) spouted off about how he never lights up a cigarette because he has power over something that kills people, and how Hazel Grace (Shaileen Woodley) talks about infinities as a metaphor for their romance. I hated how Augustus comes off as a skeezy, smooth-talker who's just trying to dip his cock into Hazel's pants. I hated that the film uses the Anne Frank museum and uses it as a makeout session during the couple's trip to Amsterdam, but not before it uses the words from her diary as a metaphor for, you guessed it, Hazel's romance with Augustus. I hated how calculated and pin-point cliche the films 126-minute runtitme it is - from the chance meeting, to the trip to Germany to meet a recluse author (Willem Dafoe), to the third act where one of our lovebirds dies. I hated how the script and the source material by John Greene comes off as second-rate Nicholas Sparks drama. But most of all: I hated how this film, with a $12 million budget, made over $300 million worldwide, where as interesting films like Edge of Tomorrow and Beyond the Lights struggle to find an audience. It's Hollywood cynicism at it's most shamelessly blatant; that they can take something as empty and shallow as this piece of shit, put attractive leads in the movie and sit back and let the money roll in. 

Thursday, December 4, 2014

You Have Been Terminated

Every boy growing up in the 80's or 90's has an action hero we latch onto, or action movies we loved. These movies were rated R, of course, because we loved seeing violence, corny one-liners, and bewbies! There's a thrill we all got by watching something we're not supposed to be watching, like John Rambo mowing down dozens of bad guys in the Rambo series, or John McClain taking out terrorists in the Die Hard movies. For me, it was Arnold Schwarzenegger and the Terminator movies. James Cameron's The Terminator and his sequel, Terminator 2: Judgement Day are classic sci-fi action pictures in my book, and personal favorites of mine, and anytime they were on TV, my butt was parked on the sofa to watch the future Governator kick ever manner of ass. 

Today, Paramount Pictures told me, the fans of the first two movies, and Jim Cameron, that we can go fuck ourselves, in the form of Terminator: Genisys (due out May 2015).

Yes, it is nice to see Schwarzenegger back as the T-800, the role that made him into, arguably, the most beloved and well-know action star of his day, and John Cho as the T-1000 is actually inspired casting, because he does resemble the Robert Patrick character from the 1991 sequel. Having said all that: this movie is blending both the first and the second films and hitting the reset button, when the first two movies were fine as is. There is no fucking reason to do a reboot on the franchise that ended when the T-1000 was destroyed, Skynet eliminated, and the T-800 sacrificing himself to make sure that his technology could never be duplicated by anyone else. As a fan of the original movies, this just comes off as Hollywood, once again insulting us by making an unnecessary sequel that was wrapped up with Judgement Day.