Scott Mendelson's Blog

Open Salon's resident movie nerd and box office geek.

Scott Mendelson

Scott Mendelson
Location
Woodland Hills, California, United States
Birthday
April 02
Bio
A ten-year Salon reader, Mendelson also has a film and politics blog/column at Mendelon's Memos: located at: http://scottalanmendelson.blogspot.com/. He is also a free lance voice over artist and occasionally contributes film reviews for www.ValleySceneMagazine.com.

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Editor’s Pick
APRIL 18, 2011 10:47AM

Open Salon Review: Scream 4 (2011)

Scream 4
2011
110 minutes
rated R

by Scott Mendelson

It is rare that a film spends such a large chunk of its running time basically admonishing its own existence.  Yet Wes Craven's return to the world of Scream is not only a relatively unnecessary franchise revival,… Read full post »
Editor’s Pick
APRIL 4, 2011 6:24PM

Why the studios' Video On Demand scheme is doomed.

I know when I saw that fantastic Green Lantern footage on Saturday, my first thought was "Wow, I can't wait to watch that in my home just sixty days after theatrical opening day for just $30!".  Fox, Warner Bros, Sony, and Universal announced last week that they will begin offering… Read full post »
Sucker Punch
2011
115 minutes
rated PG-13

by Scott Mendelson

Zach Snyder's Sucker Punch is an experiment and a question: Is is possible to make a female-driven action fantasy without falling prey to certain misogynistic messaging?  Just as its difficult to make an anti-war film becaus… Read full post »
Editor’s Pick
MARCH 11, 2011 9:52AM

Open Salon Review: Battle: Los Angeles (2011)

Battle: Los Angeles
2011
116 minutes
rated PG-13

by Scott Mendelson

Rare is the movie that loses points for being too realistic.  But Jonathan Liebesman's alien invasion picture feels less like an epic and more like a genuinely plausible war picture.  This is not a bad thing,… Read full post »
Red Riding Hood
2011
100 minutes
rated PG-13

by Scott Mendelson

Catherine Hardwicke’s Red Riding Hood is a picture that works in spite of itself.  Much of the acting is overly formal and stilted, the film looks claustrophobic and stage bound, and the narrative flirts with societ… Read full post »
FEBRUARY 18, 2011 10:34AM

Blu Ray review: All-Star Superman (2011)

All-Star Superman
2011
75 minutes
rated PG (violence, action, sensuality, language, and brief innuendo)
Available from WHV on February 22nd on DVD, Blu Ray, iTunes, and OnDemand

by Scott Mendelson

If you ask most casual comic book fans to name their favorite Superman story, they are likely… Read full post »
Editor’s Pick
FEBRUARY 17, 2011 9:57AM

Justin Bieber's attempt at nuance in a soundbite era...

This is the first, and hopefully last article I'll be writing about Mr. Bieber that doesn't involve his present and future film projects. I have nothing against the kid, but I have no more business discussing Bieber's worth as a musician than I do discussing LeBron James's first year on… Read full post »
 
Today, Dennis Kucinich and the Tea Partiers were on the same side.  If Obama wants to be on the wrong side of this issue (as he seems to be on the wrong side in nearly every aspect of the 'War on Terror'), then so be it.  But the House
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Editor’s Pick
FEBRUARY 3, 2011 12:37AM

Wonder Woman comes to TV, where female superheroes thrive.

I have written a couple times about the David E. Kelly Wonder Woman reboot that is apparently scheduled for this fall on NBC.  The show will allegedly involve a somewhat 'realistic' take on the Amazon warrior, with Diana being a CEO by day and a vigilante at night.  The pilot… Read full post »
JANUARY 31, 2011 10:56AM

Open Salon Box Office Review (01/30/11)

While there were two major openers over the weekend and both of them opened within expectations, the real news was the performance of the various Oscar nominees that were in a position to capitalize on last week's nominations.  Generally speaking, the news was good all around.  Topp… Read full post »
Editor’s Pick
JANUARY 25, 2011 10:38AM

Mostly Good News: Thoughts on the Oscar nominations.

Is Chris Nolan the new Steven Spielberg?  Inception received eight nominations, including Best Picture, but Nolan failed to receive a directing nod this morning.  That is arguably the biggest surprise in the otherwise predictable batch of Oscar nominations today.  Even as someo
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Editor’s Pick
JANUARY 24, 2011 10:26AM

Open Salon Box Office Review (01/23/11)

As the lone new wide-release of the weekend, the Ivan Reitman romantic-comedy, No Strings Attached, debuted with $20.3 million.  The $25 million picture was a solid win for both Natalie Portman and Ashton Kutcher.  Portman probably deserves credit, as this was the first mainstream p… Read full post »
Collider is reporting that Summit Entertainment has hired Jon and Erich Hoeber to pen a sequel to their hit comic book adaptation Red.  As you recall, the film opened to around $22 million in mid-October and stuck around seemingly forever, ending up with $90 million in domestic grosses
Read full post »
Editor’s Pick
JANUARY 12, 2011 2:58AM

Open Salon Review: The Green Hornet (2011)

The Green Hornet
2011
119 minutes
Rated PG-13
by Scott Mendelson

There is a refreshing quaintness to Michel Gondry's The Green Hornet.  In an age where every comic book adaptation and/or superhero adventure story sets out to be the biggest, most explosive, most fx-filled, most fantastic
Read full post »
The Wolfman, Salt, Knight and Day, The A-Team, and The Town.  What do these films have in common?  Not too much, except I saw all of them in theaters, all on my own dime and (more importantly) on my own time.  I enjoyed The A-Team and kinda-sorta liked Knight andRead full post »
It's not a little sad and a lot ironic.  Say what you will about Bob and Harvey Weinsten and Miramax, but they made their fortune and glory in the 1990s by making or distributing quirky and offbeat material, original stories with often original ideas.  They gave us The Crying
Read full post »
DECEMBER 14, 2010 3:03AM

Open Salon Review: Tron: Legacy (2010)

Tron: Legacy: an IMAX 3D Experience
2010
125 minutes
rated PG
by Scott Mendelson

Tron: Legacy almost operates as a litmus test for how much we will tolerate in our tent-pole film making.  Just how much bad dialogue, poor acting, inexplicable plotting, and emotionally-vapid characteriz
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DECEMBER 13, 2010 10:17AM

Open Salon Box Office Review (12/12/10)

It was a gruesome weekend for wide releases, as two sure-fire openers underperformed, which frankly ought to make Disney very nervous for next weekend.  Debuting at a somewhat soft number one was The Chronicles of Narnia: Voyage of the Dawn Treader.  The picture is the third in the… Read full post »
DECEMBER 8, 2010 10:30AM

Open Salon review: The Fighter (2010)

The Fighter
2010
116 minutes
Rated R
Opens in select theaters on Friday, December 10th
 
By Scott Mendelson

The Fighter is a solid example of the old cliché: "It's not what it's about, but how it's about it."  The story is a relatively standard underdog
Read full post »
DECEMBER 6, 2010 12:44PM

Open Salon Box Office Review (12/05/10)

There was but a single new wide-release this weekend, as the weekend after Thanksgiving is a scary time for Hollywood.  Few studios are willing to risk dealing with the post-holiday hangover, so this weekend brings just The Warrior's Way.  But we'll get to that in a minute.  Fi… Read full post »
Editor’s Pick
DECEMBER 2, 2010 10:01AM

Open Salon Review: Black Swan (2010)

Black Swan
2010
110 minutes
Rated R
Opens December 3rd in select theaters
By Scott Mendelson

Darren Aronofsky's Black Swan is a dazzling and often intoxicating horror story.  No, it's not a body count slasher picture or a supernatural spook story, but it is every bit as unnerving
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NOVEMBER 30, 2010 9:51AM

Open Salon Review: Tangled (2010)

Tangled
2010
100 minutes
Rated PG (for 'brief mild violence' - this one really should have been a G)
 
by Scott Mendelson

The most impressive thing about Walt Disney's Tangled is that it manages to incorporate nearly every standard element of the classic Disney fairy-tale/90s cartoon w
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Editor’s Pick
NOVEMBER 24, 2010 9:43AM

Open Salon Review: The Nutcracker 3D (2010)

The Nutcracker 3D
2010
105 minutes
rated PG
Opens Wednesday, November 24th in select theaters.
 
by Scott Mendelson
 
The Nutcracker 3D is one of the strangest cocktails I've seen in a long time.  It's technically a kids adventure story, yet it eventually becomes, of all thing
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For Colored Girls
2010
130 minutes
Rated R

by Scott Mendelson
 
For the record, I have not seen the original play For Colored Girls Who Have Considered Suicide When the Rainbow is Enuf. This is my first exposure to this material and should be treated as such.… Read full post »
Editor’s Pick
OCTOBER 29, 2010 11:42AM

Open Salon review: Saw VII 3D (2010)

Saw VII
2010
91 minutes
rated R
by Scott Mendelson

Saw VII is an unnecessary epilogue to a series that already had a pretty satisfying finale.  Saw VI succeeded in returning Tobin Bell to the center stage, while devising a compelling story that brought the story full
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