The very first Harry Potter movie opened 15 years ago next month. Fifteen years. A lot has changed in blockbuster movies over the past decade and a half – superheroes are now front and center, CG has advanced to remarkable degrees, and remakes, prequels and spin-offs are filling the movie theaters. But J.K. Rowling’s magical world was one of the most original series of its time. Before Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone opened on November 18, 2001, the only major movies for kids born in the ‘80s and ‘90s were animated films from Disney and Dreamworks. The 21st Century also brought with it the Star Wars prequels and the Lord of the Rings series, but Harry Potter introduced a whole new era of fantasy blockbusters for kids (Chronicles of Narnia, The Golden Compass, Twilight, etc.). It gave millennials the first major family franchise of their generation.
The Gremlins reboot has been in development for years now, and last we heard, the new installment in the franchise won’t be a remake, nor will it have the involvement of original director Joe Dante. That’s good and bad news, but original writer and producer Chris Columbus is quite protective of the property, and while it won’t be a remake, it will take inspiration from the biggest film of the year.
There are a lot of recognizable cameos in Adam Sandler’s Pixels, from 80s video game characters — Paperboy, Q-bert — to actual 80s personalities — Hall & Oates, Madonna. But, for all the cameos that are included in the film, equally as notable was who didn’t make the cut. We...
Adam Sandler used to make comedies. Now he makes Adam Sandler movies; bland exercises in nostalgia where he hangs out with his actor buddies, cracks a few jokes, and exerts as little effort as is humanly possible to the sounds of early ’80s rock and pop. Pixels is the latest and canniest Adam Sandler movie yet. It mines his older audience’s affection for the classic arcade games of their youth, and his younger audience’s affection for the ideas of video games coming to life. The famous gaming cameos are sure to make Pixels a huge hit, even though it’s just as unfunny as everything else Sandler produces these days.