Thursday, November 30, 2006

Ellroy's "White Jazz" takes shape

Having finally gotten around to seeing the disaster that was "The Black Dahlia," I've decided to consider it simply an Ellroy aberration, and I'm ready to move on, thanks to George Clooney.

While I have no opinion on whether or not, as People has declared twice now, he is the world's sexiest man, I do think he's one of the smartest. He almost always makes good movie choices, and the next two years should be no exception.

Most exciting to me is he has signed on to produce and star in an adaptation of James Ellroy's "White Jazz." It will be directed by Joe Carnahan ("Narc" and the upcoming "Smoking Aces") from a script by his brother, Michael Carnahan.

Sounds like a solid team to me, and "White Jazz" is simply a sensational novel. The final installment in Ellroy's "L.A. Quartet" of novels, it's about the commanding officer of LAPD's vice division in the 1950s who, after being asked to investigate the source of payola in his department, finds himself the scapegoat. As with any Ellroy novel, of course, it's about a lot more than that, and it's all written in the scat tone of jazz which will hopefully translate to the big screen.

A second Clooney project just announced with Warner Bros. will be one he will direct, the heist movie "Belmont Boys."

"Belmont Boys," written by "Ocean's Thirteen" writers Brian Koppelman and David Levien, is the name of a group of seven thieves who meet as railbirds at the racetrack in the old days and almost pull off the job of a lifetime. Now, 30 years later, they are thrown back together to finish what they started. Plotwise I can only say meh, but hopefully I'm wrong.

Before then, he'll reteam with the Coen brothers for "Burn After Reading," a promising-sounding comedy about a C.I.A. guy who’s writing a book and he loses the disc. Clooney’s character is not the C.I.A. guy, but a guy that goes around killing people.

Even before then, if you can keep up, he's directing "Leatherheads," described as "a romantic comedy about 1920's football," co-starring, of course, Renee Zellweger. Again, meh.

So, count me as very psyched about "Burn After Reading" and "White Jazz," and lukewarm at best about the other two. Call Clooney whatever you want to, but you can never call him boring.

Murphy back for more 'Beverly Hills Cop'

I just don't get Eddie Murphy.

After years of making easily forgettable comedies which too often involved diapers, he's been getting raves and Oscar buzz for his performance in "Dreamgirls." So what does he go and do? He puts on a fat suit for "Norbit," which wasn't terribly funny when it starred Martin Lawrence the first time.

And now he's set to return to the reliable gravy wagon, "Beverly Hills Cop." He's hooking up with Paramount again for a fourth installment, which is now seeking writers.

The first "Beverly Hills Cop," I'll concede, was hilarious, but it's been a solid downward trajectory since then, and I can't imagine things will pick up with No. 4.

About the only good thing this can bring the world is more Judge Reinhold. To that, at least, I can say bring it on.

11 comments:

Anonymous said...

as long as he hooks up with bruckheier i dont think he can go wrong...Go Eddie go Bruckheimer(who wasnt in the horrible prt 3)

Reel Fanatic said...

From what I've read couch 'tato, I'm afraid Bruckheimer is still out for this one ... The name attached to produce wasn't one I recognized, so things could already be going wrong

Anonymous said...

I have to confess to having liked the first Beverly Hills Cop, but I think the world could do without the rest. It certainly doesn't need one more sequel...

Lori said...

Oh, man...BH Cop FOUR??? Oyy...no thanks.

Anonymous said...

Glad to hear GC is working with the Coen brothers again. Seems to be a magical partnership.

Reel Fanatic said...

It really does, J. Marquis .. I even liked the very underrated Intolerable Cruelty quite a bit

Anonymous said...

Murphy has this weird ability to take three steps back when he takes one step forward. Just as 'Shrek' revived his career, he put out a series of crap movies. Now, after a potential of an Oscar with 'Dreamgirls', he's likely to do 'Beverly Hills Cop 4.'

Just don't get it...

Jack's Shack said...

I still like Murphy, I really do.

Marina said...

I'm concerned about Murphy back for Beverly Hills Cop. Maybe he'll change his mind between now and then. I just don't see how this could help his career.

Reel Fanatic said...

I think you're right, Marina, but if Dreamgirls takes off like I'm sure it will, he will be golden for at least a few years, even if this is a disaster

Anonymous said...

runescape money runescape gold tibia gold runescape accounts runescape gp buy runescape gold tibia gold tibia money buy runescape money runescape items