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Review: ‘Absolutely Fabulous: The Movie’ is Still Bubbly, If Not a Little Flat

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Absolutely Fabulous Review MovieSpoon.com

[dropcap]J[/dropcap]ennifer Saunders and Joanna Lumley stumble back into the roles of Edina and Patsy in Absolutely Fabulous: The Movie as though they’d been awakened from a drunken coma (this is a compliment). Still dabbling in the world of fashion and PR, they appear to have barely aged since their TV series from the 1990s. What’s their secret of youth? Chances are they might have stumbled onto the perfect chemical mixture amid the dozens of pills they’ve swallowed. The Botox injections probably help too.

Absolutely Fabulous Review MovieSpoon.com

Looking good forever isn’t easy, but someone’s gotta do it.

What’s more pleasing to witness is how the humor of Absolutely Fabulous remains as fast-paced and bitingly bombastic as it ever was. The satirical jabs at the world fashion, beauty, decadence, progressivism and fame come more than welcome in the 21st century where such commentary feels missing. The fearless and quick pacing of the slurring, boozing and ridiculous displays of clothing never let up. If one joke doesn’t work, the next one is sure to be either clever or laugh-worthy.

Okay, so our characters are back and the tone is firmly reestablished, but there is still one big hurdle the movie has to conquer. It is the issue of any TV series being adapted into a movie, even one that’s been dormant for many years: Is there a story here that deserves a movie?

For the first half of this picture, there appears to be one worth telling on the big screen. Edina is struggling to find some meaning in her life as a PR agent just barely hanging in there. Age and family begin to creep into her concerning mind, but only as briefly as her go-go lifestyle of publicity will allow. When presented with an opportunity to land Kate Moss as a client, she jumps at the prospect to save her career. She jumps so forcefully, in fact, that she ends up knocking Kate Moss into the river where she is presumed dead.

Absolutely Fabulous Review Kate Moss MovieSpoon.com

In true supermodel fashion, Kate Moss manages to keep her champagne glass and cigarette afloat.

This inciting incident doesn’t so much drive a story as it does act as a platform for more of the female duo’s antics. Accused of murder, Edina and Patsy flee the United Kingdom to hide out in France. It’s around this third act that the movie begins to lose sight of any arc and just sets up basic sitcom-level premises for comedy. To land some money in France, Patsy dresses up as a man to woo the world’s wealthiest woman into marrying her. She even completes her disguise with the old stick-on mustache. Not exactly the height of this series for premises.

This is the very definition of a TV-to-movie translation in how it assembles all the familiar characters and struggles to fit them all in somewhere. Even more crowding is a lengthy roster of celebrity cameos playing either themselves (Jon Hamm as an old love of Patsy) or bit roles (Rebel Wilson as a flight attendant). Certain arcs are lost along the way as the movie continuously searches for funny moments to exploit rather character traits to develop. It’s rather disappointing how the movie never really brings the show to a close and just acts as four more episodes of the TV series.

Read more to watch the trailer for Absolutely Fabulous:

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Izzy

Movie Magic: The De-Aging Technique of The Irishman

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Have you read Izzy yet? If so, you know that Izzy makes the apples that give the Gods their youth and immortality. It also seems Robert De Niro discovered one of Izzy’s apples too… In Martin Scorsese’s upcoming biographical film, he stars as Frank “The Irishman” Sheeran, a labor union leader and alleged hitman for the Bufalino crime family. The trailer for the movie, which will premieres NEXT WEEK (!), also features a “de-aged” De Niro. “We’re so used to watching them as the older faces,” Scorsese said in an interview on the A24 podcast. “Does it change the eyes at all? …If that’s the case, what was in the eyes that I liked? Was it intensity? Was it gravitas? Was it threat?…How do we get that? I don’t know.” Some might consider this magic and I for one can’t wait to see the impact of Izzy’s apples on screen for myself. 😉

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“Captain Marvel” Retains Top Slot at the Box Office

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It’s no surprise that in its second weekend, the first Marvel Cinematic Universe of 2019 is still riding high. Captain Marvel, the latest in the MCU with Brie Larson starring as the lead, generated another $69 million over the weekend, placing its domestic total at $266 million. Tallying up the international box office, the film’s global total to date is $760 million. Despite the online controversy, the film is looking to be another strong box office smash for Disney and Marvel.

As for the premieres for the weekend, and there were plenty, they were all over the map. Just below Captain Marvel was the animated adventure Wonder Park, bringing in $16 million, another film with controversy when the director’s name was removed from the picture after sexual harassment charges. Five Feet Apart, the dying teen drama about a romance amid cystic fibrosis, only came in at #3 with a weekend gross of $13 million. And debuting the lowest in the top 10 for debuts was Captive State, a sci-fi dystopian tale, only making $3 million. The film debuted so low the little film No Manches Frida 2 was able to sneak about it at #6 with a gross of $3.8 million.

Drops were fairly low all around for the returning films, mostly because Captain Marvel was dominating the previous weekend. The only milestone worth noting is that The LEGO Movie 2, after six weeks at the box office, finally cracked $100 million. And the sun is now setting on Green Book’s post-Oscar run by coming in at #10 for the final weekend of its top 10 run over the past few weeks.

View the full top ten weekend box office results below:

Captain Marvel ($69,318,000)

Wonder Park ($16,000,000)

Five Feet Apart ($13,150,000)

How to Train Your Dragon: The Hidden World ($9,345,000)

Tyler Perry’s A Madea Family Funeral ($8,085,000)

No Manches Frida 2 ($3,894,000)

Captive State ($3,163,000)

The LEGO Movie 2: The Second Part ($2,135,000)

Alita: Battle Angel ($1,900,000)

Green Book ($1,277,000)

Next weekend, Captain Marvel may very well have some competition when Jordan Peele’s new horror film Us hits over 3,600 theaters.

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“Dragon” Continues To Soar, “Funeral” Close Behind, “Green Book” Back

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With little competition for the weekend, How to Train Your Dragon: The Hidden World, the third in the animated fantasy saga, was able to secure the box office once more. In its second weekend, the animated epic made $30 million to push its domestic total to $97 million. So far the film has done about the same as the previous film and is on track to stay in the top 10 for a few more weeks in March.

Debuts this weekend were small with one big exception. Tyler Perry’s latest Madea film, A Madea Family Funeral, naturally made a relatively big splash with its dedicated audience. Starting at #2, the film made $27 million for its first weekend. No word on the budget yet but it’s most likely on a budget as most Tyler Perry productions are, so it’s safe to call this a success, especially for debuting with a box office so close to Dragon.

The rest of the premieres were not as strong at all. Greta, the new thriller starring Chloe Moretz, debuted all the way down at #8 with $4.5 million box office. To be fair, however, the film was in a constant battle for its spot as three other films also reported earnings around $4 million for the weekend. Of note, Green Book, fresh off winning the Academy Award for Best Picture one weekend ago, splashed back into more theaters to arise even higher in the top 10 with its domestic total now sitting at $73 million. Don’t count on it remaining there long as bigger blockbusters will be swooping as we plow through the last remnants of winter movies.

Check out the full listing of the top 10 box office weekend results below:

How to Train Your Dragon: The Hidden World ($30,046,000)

Tyler Perry’s A Madea Family Funeral ($27,050,000)

Alita: Battle Angel ($7,000,000)

The LEGO Movie 2: The Second Part ($6,615,000)

Green Book ($4,711,000)

Fighting With My Family ($4,691,284)

Isn’t it Romantic ($4,645,000)

Greta ($4,585,000)

What Men Want ($2,700,000)

Happy Death Day 2U ($2,516,000)

Next weekend is once again all about Marvel as their latest superhero solo film, Captain Marvel, will be appearing in 4,100 theaters.

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