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Popcorn & Prejudice: A Movie Blog

Seattle Times writer Moira Macdonald muses on moviegoing. Email Moira: mmacdonald@seattletimes.com.

January 13, 2011 at 10:57 AM

A “Dynasty” movie, a “One Day” date, and a digression

(First, the digression, which I’m marking as such by putting it into parenthesis, so you can skip it if you want. Sometimes, life hands you a metaphor that’s perfect for the movie you’re about to see. Last night, I was strolling in Pacific Place before the “Green Hornet” screening — one little-known hazard of being a movie critic, along with all the popcorn, is that you spend way too much time in shopping malls, where cinemas are often located — and wandered into a store with big “Semi-Annual Sale” signs everywhere. I went to a rack of dresses and, noticing that the price tags weren’t altered, asked a saleswoman what the sale price was. “Those aren’t on sale,” she said promptly. I pointed out, trying not to get irritated by the Alice-in-Wonderland quality of the moment, that they were on a rack that was marked “Sale,” and that there was nothing else on the rack. “Oh, she said, “the company told us to do that.” In other words, an expectation was set, and then not met, rather brazenly. Just as the words “a Michel Gondry film” set up certain expectations, which “The Green Hornet” doesn’t meet. You expect something imaginative and interesting and weird — and what you get is a rather ordinary dress that isn’t marked down, and wouldn’t even look good without a belt, which would cost more anyway. Go figure. “The Green Hornet,” metaphorically, needs a belt.)
Anyway. I get a lot of strange press releases via email, and most of them just get a cursory glance before going to the Great Email Garbage Bin in the Sky, but here’s one that raised my eyebrows yesterday: Coming from a publicist representing Richard and Esther Shapiro (co-creators of the ’80s TV series “Dynasty”), it announced that the couple were “following the trend set by the big screen remakes of series like Sex and the City, The A-Team, Charlie’s Angels, Starsky & Hutch and the planned 21 Jump Street film by rebooting Dynasty as a new film franchise.” Apparently the movie will be a prequel, set in the “Mad Men” era of the ’60s (what did we all call the ’60s before “Mad Men”?) when Blake first met Alexis. This sounds like such a truly terrible idea that I can’t wait to see it. I mean, who could play the young Joan Collins, other than the young Joan Collins? Talk about raising expectations. No dates are set for the project, but the Shapiros say they are working on the script and hope to begin shooting the movie this year. I’ll keep an eye on it.
And Focus Features sent an announcement today that “One Day,” the romantic comedy starring Anne Hathaway and Jim Sturgess and directed by Lone Scherfig (“An Education”) has a release date: July 8, 2011. David Nicholls, author of the novel, has written the screenplay. I bring this up because you may want to read this book. Let me rephrase that: You do want to read this book. It’s pretty great. (Then again, if you read the book you won’t be surprised by what happens in the movie. But you’ll be in the same boat as me.) Let’s hope the movie does it justice.

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