In Case You Missed It! (ICYMI) August 19, 2017

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Happy Saturday MMT Fam! I’m starting a new post category called “In Case You Missed It,” or ICYMI for short, to catch you up (and condense) music and movie news bites!

Typically, this info is regularly posted at MMT on Facebook, or my Instagram¬†and Twitter pages, but I wanted to make sure the website subscribers are also “in the know.” ūüėČ

First up, ¬†is the amazing deal Groupon is having for the “ICON” Janet Jackson’s upcoming “State of The World” tour in Philly. You can click here to purchase $40 or $75 tickets – but act quick because they are selling fast!

And if you missed this concert announcement, the one and only Brandy Norwood will appear in Philly on September 23 at the Theatre of the Living Arts (TLA). Get additional information and tickets at tlaphilly.com.

Next up is the streaming event most comic lovers are discussing, the release of the long-awaited Marvel’s The Defenders on Netflix Friday, August 18! Our resident Marvel contributor Darryl King has been super busy with his first love, film making and editing, but I know for a fact that he’s binge-watching¬†the show this weekend, and I pray his schedule allows him to give us a proper review and wax poetic about Luke Cage, Daredevil, Jessica Jones and Iron Fist soon. ūüôā

For those who still don’t have a Netflix subscription, even though we’ve recommended some great watches in the MMT Netflix Picks section, you can sign up for a free month of viewing by clicking the link here!

And congrats are in order for director/producer Malcolm D. Lee, producer Will Packer, and the stars of Girls TripRegina Hall, Tiffany Haddish, Jada Pinkett Smith and Queen Latifah – which grossed 100 million dollars according to yesterday’s box office totals, making it the first film¬†starring, written, directed and produced by African-Americans to reach that mark.

Lastly, if you missed some of the blockbuster films MMT reviewed this year – including Spider-Man: Homecoming, War For the Planet of the Apes, and Girls Trip – cable channel FX will have you covered! According to Deadline Hollywood, the network has acquired several major movies titles from Fox, Universal and Sony for cable broadcasting. So stay tuned to the FX channel schedule for those release dates!

Until next thoughts family, Thomasena

PS – There are advantages to reading to the end! Congrats to subscriber Earlene Drummond, who won that copy of Phoenix Forgotten on DVD/Digital/Blu-ray! We’re giving away a copy of The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks, courtesy of our friends at HBO Films, soon! So make sure you’re not only following, but interacting with us on the MMT social media sites! I keep on eye out for those active responders ūüėČ

 

 

MMT Quick Review of GIRLS TRIP

Set amidst the Afrocentric treasure that is the Essence Festival, GIRLS TRIP is a hilarious comedic romp, filled with celebrity cameos, entertaining performances, and an intriguing story of friendship, “extreme” fun, foul play and forgiveness. Having attended the festival as a first-timer, only two weeks prior, I was drawn right back to the cadence, charm and party atmosphere of the city, nicknamed “The Big Easy, while viewing.

“Girls Trip” tells the story of four friends – veteran actresses Regina Hall (When The Bough Breaks, The Best Man Holiday), Jada Pinkett-Smith¬†(Gotham, Magic Mike XXL) and Queen Latifah (Star,Bessie), with scene stealing actress/comedian Tiffany Haddish¬†(The Carmichael Show) – who reunite after several years of ups, and major downs for part of the foursome, for a New Orl√©ans trip.

Easy comparisons of the film will be made to “Bridesmaids,” and the more recently released “Rough Night,” which highlights women reuniting for big life events. However, this film avoids the “wedding” trope, and explores universal themes through four African-American women who are reuniting to support and celebrate Hall’s character (Ryan Pierce) being selected as the keynote speaker for the aforementioned fest.¬†As the one who appears to have it all together, Ryan’s friends find out she needs support, in more ways than one, and secrets are revealed that test the boundaries and strength of the “Flossy Posse’s” friendship.

In regards to the cast, let me first say that Tiffany Haddish is a star rising towards an extremely bright path. She not only held her own along side heavyweight female leads, she often stole the show. And Regina Hall, who is adept at providing comic relief in her own right – see 2014’s “About Last Night” as an example – brought it as the straight “man” opposite the comic riot that is Haddish.

As a (gasp) middle age woman, it was also a delight to see Queen Latifah and Jada Pinkett-Smith reunited on-screen – and be sure to look out for the nod to their 1996 all female lead hit (hint, hint).

But this just isn’t a film with female star power – with actors such as Larenz Tate (Power, Deuces), Mike Colter (Luke Cage) and newcomer Kofi Siriboe (Queen Sugar) bringing the heat for the male team. The female dominated audience I viewed the film with did everything but stand, although I can’t be sure what happened behind me, with the ovation given to Siriboe when his character is first introduced.

And can Mr. Tate please share what fountain of youth he has located, because he has delayed aging significantly! As friend to the crew and touring bass player Julian, Tate also brought “go for it girl” moments for one of the posse members, and a serious heart-throb factor – especially for one of my companions, who so accurately noted that you could put stills of him from both “Love Jones” and this film side by side and he’d look the same.

All in All, “Girls Trip” was the most fun I’ve had watching a film in a while, and I have no doubt that director Malcolm D. Lee (Barbershop: The Next Cut, The¬†Best Man Holiday) and screenwriters Kenya Barris (Barbershop: The Next Cut, black*ish) & Tracy Oliver (Barbershop: The Next Cut, Survivor’s Remorse) have knocked this one out of the park, will surpass box office expectations, and create an influx of “flossy posses” at next year’s Essence Festival.

Until next thought, Thomasena

 

 

 

GIVEAWAY: advance screening of GIRLS TRIP on July 18 (Philly, PA)

Happy Tuesday MMT Fam! We’ve acquired 25 pairs of passes to the Philly advance screening of the highly anticipated comedy GIRLS TRIP – produced by Will Packer (Ride Along and Think Like a Man franchises, Almost Christmas) and directed/produced Malcolm D. Lee (The Best Man franchise, Barbershop: The Next Cut) – on next Tuesday, July 18.

In the film, four lifelong friends РRegina Hall, Tiffany Haddish, Jada Pinkett Smith and Queen Latifah Рtravel to New Orléans for the annual Essence Festival and sisterhoods are rekindled, wild sides are rediscovered, and there’s enough dancing, drinking, brawling and romancing to make the Big Easy blush.

Want to put your name in the hat to win tickets? You must be subscribed to this website (and¬†if you also follow MMT on Facebook¬†your chances are doubled!) and send an email to contests@musicmoviesthoughts.com with the subject line “Big Easy” and your full name in the body. Twenty five winners will be selected at random and notified by Sunday, July 16.

You can check out a trailer for the movie below and get additional info at the official website here. GIRLS TRIP opens in theaters nationwide on July 21.

Good Luck!

MMT Quick Review: ICE AGE COLLISION COURSE

ICE AGE: COLLISION COURSE

The sixth and final animated film in the “Ice Age” saga –¬†ICE AGE: COLLISION COURSE ¬†opened Friday and, considering the limited amount of family films currently in theaters, will probably do extremely well at the box office this weekend. But is it worth the price of theater admission and snacks for the family, or is it one to wait for home video? Simple answers: 1) if you’re an adult fan of the franchise that’s a yes, but you might not be mad if you caught it on video; and 2) if you’re a kid it’s a yes, but I believe that’s conditional.

And why conditional you ask? Well, MMT junior contributor Jayla was unavailable last Saturday to screen, but my two adorable nieces Alaya (7 yrs) and Aminah (2 yrs) filled in. The two-year-old fell asleep about 30 minutes into the movie – was a bit too weighty and scientific for her, even with the gags – but the seven-year-old was excited and engaged the entire time.

Ice AgeIn this third film, the Ice Age crew find themselves facing extinction Рthanks in part to a cosmic mistake by Scrat and his perpetual pursuit of the coveted acorn. To save themselves and their home, Sid, Manny, Diego, and the crew journey on an adventurous quest that takes them to strange lands and encounters with new characters.

With a remarkable voice-over cast – that includes Ray Romano, Queen Latifah, Wanda Sykes, Keke Palmer, Dennis Leary, Jennifer Lopez, Adam Devine, Jessie J and John Leguizamo – I found the movie both comical and entertaining. But with an 1:40 running time, I also felt it was a bit extended when the gags/laughs weren’t quite hitting the mark.

I must admit, I am new to the “Ice Age” series, but was able to follow the story and didn’t feel left out by not being familiar with the characters. I did, as mentioned, find it a bit long – and to give full disclosure, the “Ice Age” theme just isn’t my cup of tea, so take what you will from my report.

All in all, ICE AGE: COLLISION COURSE is a positive, family friendly alternative to what is sure to be a “Star Trek” high grossing weekend. Let me know what you think if you get a chance to check it out. I would love to know, especially if you were one of the MMT winners at last week’s screening!

Until next thought family, Thomasena

PS – I love this ad with Scrat doing the Running Man (new school version)!

GIVEAWAY: advance screening of MIRACLES FROM HEAVEN Thursday, March 10 (Philly, PA)

Miracles From Heaven (Sony Pictures)

Happy Saturday MMT Fam! We have a great advance screening giveaway today – but you have to be quick! ¬†We’ve partnered with Sony Pictures for the upcoming feature MIRACLES FROM HEAVEN starring Jennifer Garner,¬†Kylie Rogers, Martin Henderson, John Carroll Lynch with Eugenio Derbez and Queen Latifah.

To try your luck at an admit-two pass, click here to get to the Sony Pictures landing, and follow the “Get My Passes” prompt. All passes, like theater seating, are not guaranteed and are on a first-come, first-served basis.

You can read the film’s synopsis and watch its trailer below, and get additional info at the official website here. MIRACLES FROM HEAVEN opens in theaters on March 16.

Good luck family!

About the Film:

MIRACLES FROM HEAVEN is based on the incredible true story of the Beam family.  When Christy (Jennifer Garner) discovers her 10-year-old daughter Anna (Kylie Rogers) has a rare, incurable disease, she becomes a ferocious advocate for her daughter’s healing as she searches for a solution.  After Anna has a freak accident, an extraordinary miracle unfolds in the wake of her dramatic rescue that leaves medical specialists mystified, her family restored and their community inspired.

MMT Quick Look: THE PERFECT MATCH

perfect

Good Evening MMT Fam! Here’s a quick look at the upcoming film THE PERFECT MATCH starring Terrence J, singer/actress Cassie Ventura, and Paula Patton. ¬†It is executive produced by Queen Latifah (Bessie, Brotherly Love), who also produced and starred in one of my favorite romantic comedies, Just Wright¬†– which was beautifully cast, shot and also included one of this film’s stars Ms. Paula Patton.

Check out the trailer and synopsis below, and get additional info about the movie at Codeblack Entertainment’s Facebook page. ¬†Ooh, and for the Philly area fam, I have it on good authority that we can expect advanced screening passes for this one – so keep an eye out and stay active!

THE PERFECT MATCH opens in theaters nationwide on March 11.

Until next thought, Thomasena

Synopsis: Charlie (Terrence J) is a bachelor who’s convinced that relationships are dead even though his sister (Paula Patton), a therapist, tries to tell him otherwise. His best friends bet him that if he sticks to one woman for one month, he’s bound to fall in love. An unconvinced Charlie takes the bet because he believes that he‚Äôs immune to love‚Ķ until he crosses paths with the beautiful and mysterious Eva (Cassie Ventura). Charlie is sure that he will win the bet and prove his friends and sister wrong, so he rises to the occasion and takes on the challenge. Turning on his irresistible charm, Charlie coaxes Eva into a casual affair, but soon finds out that Eva has turned the tables on him. Unsure of what to think or how to feel, he finds himself trying to navigate in a foreign territory. Now, Charlie is left questioning whether he may actually want more than just a one-night stand.

Genre: Romantic Comedy

Directed by: Bille Woodruff

Executive Produced by: Queen Latifah

Starring: Terrence J, Paula Patton , Cassie Ventura, Lauren London, French Montana, Donald Faison, Dashcha Polanco, Joe Pantoliano, Timothy Delaghetto, Brandy Norwood, Kali Hawk, Beau Casper Smart, also with star-studded cameos by Robin Givens  and Jessica White.