The Space Between Us Preview

It’s been a strange year for the Romance film. While there is a major ongoing BMT saga in the Fifty Shades series, with Fifty Shades Darker coming in as a BMT Live! this year, there wasn’t much besides that. Even Nicholas Sparks seems to have taken himself out of the game. We basically found ourselves choosing between the Reese Witherspoon RomCom vehicle Home Again and the SciFi/Romance The Space Between Us. I think you know which one won that battle. That’s right! We’re watching the very rare SciFi/Romance film in The Space Between Us. This film is about a boy born on Mars who yearns only about experiencing Earth, but is denied that opportunity because his body wouldn’t handle our gravity… until he takes the matter into his own brittle-boned hands. I would have loved to save this film for a Set in the Future cycle (as romances are hard to come by), but alas. Guess we’ll just have to go with Heartbeeps instead. Let’s go!

The Space Between Us (2017) – BMeTric: 19.3

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(The number of votes is a bit surprising and the rating is very surprising. Who watched this film? How does it end up being one of the worst opening of all time and then gets 30K votes on IMDb and decent enough (average at least) ratings. It makes no sense! This could be a mystery, but I think I have to watch the movie first to see if it is worth an investigation.)

RogerEbert.com – 2 stars –  Butterfield and Robertson (who’s about 10 years too old to be playing a high-school student at this point) don’t exactly get sparkling dialogue with which to convince us of their burgeoning love. Neither does the score, which works overtime to make us feel all the feels. But hey, at least there’s an exploding barn. That’s something you don’t see on Mars every day.

(The score! I love when a score is all up in your face, it is the best. I think this film is going to be boring, but there is an outside shot it’ll be just silly and self-serious enough to keep me interested.)

Trailer – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=x73-573aWfs

(That … kind of looks interesting. Uh oh … this movie is going to be crazy boring isn’t it? How long is this? Two hours?! Goddamnit.)

Directors – Peter Chelsom – (Known For: Hannah Montana: The Movie; Serendipity; Shall We Dance; The Mighty; Funny Bones; Hear My Song; Future BMT: Town & Country; BMT: The Space Between Us; Razzie Notes: Nominated for Worst Director for Town & Country in 2002; Notes: British, his long career has seen him nominated for BAFTAs and Razzies. A classically trained actor originally he played alongside Patrick Stewart and Anthony Hopkins among the Royal Shakespeare company.)

Writers – Allan Loeb (screenplay by & story by) – (Known For: Wall Street: Money Never Sleeps; Rock of Ages; The Switch; Things We Lost in the Fire; Future BMT: So Undercover; Here Comes the Boom; 21; Collateral Beauty; The Only Living Boy in New York; BMT: The Dilemma; Just Go with It; The Space Between Us; Notes: His story seems very inspiring. He was struggling and almost bankrupt when he moved to New York, joined Gambler’s Anonymous, and developed the script for The Only Living Boy in New York. This sparked his career despite only just having being produced this year.)

Stewart Schill (story by) – (BMT: The Space Between Us; Notes: Almost exclusively a television editor of all things. He’s managed to earn just about one writing credit every ten years. I assume him and Lewis punch up in their spare time.)

Richard Barton Lewis (story by) – (BMT: The Space Between Us; Notes: Almost exclusively a producer (including being the Executive Producer of The Outer Limits), it is interesting he’s a writer here as this is his first writing credit it nearly twenty years.)

Actors – Gary Oldman – (Known For: Darkest Hour; The Dark Knight; Dracula; Léon: The Professional; The Dark Knight Rises; Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 2; Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire; True Romance; Batman Begins; Dawn of the Planet of the Apes; The Fifth Element; Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix; Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban; The Book of Eli; Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy; A Christmas Carol; Lawless; JFK; RoboCop; Air Force One; Future BMT: The Unborn; Lost in Space; Paranoia; Planet 51; Man Down; Criminal; Criminal Law; Quest for Camelot; Child 44; Hannibal; Romeo Is Bleeding; BMT: Red Riding Hood; The Scarlet Letter; Tiptoes; The Space Between Us; Razzie Notes: Nominated for Worst Screen Couple for The Scarlet Letter in 1996; Notes: Most of the recent news concerning him is about the Oscar buzz for Darkest Hour where he plays Winston Churchill. He also just got married for a fifth time.)

Asa Butterfield – (Known For: Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children; Hugo; The Boy in the Striped Pajamas; Ender’s Game; Journey’s End; Nanny McPhee Returns; A Brilliant Young Mind; 10,000 Saints; Son of Rambow; Future BMT: The Wolfman; BMT: The Space Between Us; Notes: He broke onto the scene in Son of Rambow, but Hugo was his biggest role in his young career. Born on April Fool’s Day and a supporter of Arsenal (booooo).)

Carla Gugino – (Known For: Man of Steel; Gerald’s Game; Watchmen; San Andreas; Sin City; American Gangster; Spy Kids; Night at the Museum; This Boy’s Life; Spy Kids 3: Game Over; Faster; Race to Witch Mountain; Spy Kids 2: Island of Lost Dreams; Snake Eyes; Welcome Home, Roxy Carmichael; Mr. Popper’s Penguins; The Lookout; Homeward Bound II: Lost in San Francisco; Miami Rhapsody; Match; Future BMT: The Unborn; Rise: Blood Hunter; Michael; Elektra Luxx; The One; Son in Law; Righteous Kill; Troop Beverly Hills; The Singing Detective; Women in Trouble; Every Day; I Melt with You; The Center of the World; Even Money; Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice; Hotel Noir; BMT: New Year’s Eve; Sucker Punch; The Space Between Us; Notes: Was turned on to acting by her aunt Carol Merrill, who, oddly I think, was really only a model on Let’s Make a Deal where she made $77 an episode.)

Budget/Gross – $30 million / Domestic: $7,885,294 (Worldwide: $14,793,385)

(A catastrophe. It is rare that what amounts to a YA romance is so reviled and gets released so widely when it looks to be a disaster.)

#87 for the Sci-Fi – Adventure genre

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(The genre is a-boomin’ and making a ton of cash. But what I’m interested in is the boom period in the early 2000s where the genre was still not making much money. 2002 in particular is crazy: Star Trek: Nemesis; Treasure Planet; The Adventures of Pluto Nash; Star Wars Episode II – Attack of the Clones; The Time Machine. Woof.)

#12 on the Worst Openings – Saturated chart

(This chart is quite interesting. We’ve only seen three of the films above this one, although we’ll hit three or four of the others in the future for sure. Sometimes these films are just not even on the radar though. Like Won’t Back Down. Ludicrous trailer, but I doubt we ever bother with it.)

Rotten Tomatoes – 16% (19/118): The Space Between Us strands its star-crossed young lovers in a mind-numbingly vast expanse of shameless cheese that will send all but the most forgiving viewers eye-rolling for the exits.

(I had to read this consensus twice. Am I going crazy or does it not make a lick of sense? I think “mind-numbingly vast expanse” just rubs me the wrong way. Seems like it could be fun though. Like Safe Haven maybe? A boy can dream.)

Poster – The Sklog Between Us (B-)

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(Nice artistic poster here with the moon as part of the text and an astronaut standing in a field of flowers. Not super cohesive otherwise.)

Tagline(s) – What’s Your Favorite Thing About Earth? (D)

(Ha! I guess I never thought about it. Maybe the air. Probably the air. It’s nice to breath and it makes the sky and sunsets and maybe gives you a nice breeze on a sweaty summer day. Certainly my favorite thing about Earth does not include this tagline. I could do without this nonsense.)

Keyword(s) – mars; Top Ten by BMeTric: 66.9 Ghosts of Mars (2001); 46.1 The Last Days on Mars (2013); 46.0 Mission to Mars (2000); 45.5 Mars Needs Moms (2011); 44.6 Approaching the Unknown (2016); 41.7 Red Planet (2000); 40.8 Ice Age: Collision Course (2016); 30.6 Avalanche Sharks (2014); 24.8 RocketMan (1997); 21.6 Stranded (2001);

(Wow, at least we hit up the number one. Mission to Mars, Red Planet, and maaaaybe RocketMan are on the docket I would say. Mars Needs Moms … we’ll probably have to figure out a way to choke that pile of garbage down at some point, but I don’t want to. Kind of like this weird list, just wonky.)

Notes – The original title of The Space Between Us was Out of This World.

In the scene where Gardner arrive on Earth, the space suit masks, worn by some of the scientists, are actually a brand of full face snorkel masks. (Not a surprise, I feel like I know exactly what these look like)

Highland High school in Albuquerque was used in some scenes, during school hours which caused a hassle between school administrators and the State Film commission (Oh that sounds awful)

Spaceport America in New Mexico hosted their first movie shoot. There were over 400 crew, actors and extras at the spaceport during the shoot.

With less than a month to go before its debut, STX Entertainment has changed “The Space Between Us” release date from December 16, 2016 to February 3, 2017. This will take the sci-fi drama out of the competitive holiday movie season into the less crowded mid-winter timetable where it will open against the horror sequel “Rings”. (What what)

The Space Between Us is the second space-related movie Asa Butterfield has started in, Ender’s Game being the first.

Just after the video call with Tulsa, Gardner is watching a movie left by one of the German scientists. That movie is “Wings of Desire.”

Cameo appearances by YouTube stars Joey Graceffa and Lele Pons during the classroom scene (boooooooooooo)

The Space Between Us stars Britt Robertson, who had also starred in a major role in Tomorrowland. Both movies involve futurology and “illegal” adventures.

Both Asa Butterfield and Janet Montgomery were in BBC’s Merlin as Mordred and Mithian. (Yeah, I didn’t realize Butterfield was in Merlin … my dog has watched every episode twice if that is worth anything (spoiler: it isn’t)).

Britt Robertson also plays a role in the 2-season TV show “Life Unexpected”. In both roles, she plays a foster child who is seeking emancipation.

In Ender’s Game, Asa Butterfield played Ender who had a second in command named Bean. From the Ender’s Game novels, Bean was a baby who was born as part of an illegal experiment, was highly intelligent, was reunited with his biological family, grew to extreme proportions with an over sized heart that would eventually kill him in Earth gravity, left behind the woman he loved, and went into space to prolong his life. This mirrors much of the story of The Space Between Us. (Whaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaat I’ve read Ender’s Game but I didn’t know the backstory to Bean. Thanks random IMDb note, spoiler alert).

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Rumor Has It… Preview

I can’t pretend like we’ve been looking forward to watching this film for years because we haven’t. We are simply watching it because it is one of the few examples of a film that employs the rare “…” in the actual title. And since we are trying to hit up nine different punctuation marks in titles we definitely need an ellipsis. That’s right! We’re watching Rumor Has It…! This is of course the sequel to The Graduate… kinda. Not the real sequel (because there actually was a book called Home School that was a sequel to the novel The Graduate), but just a film that suggests that certain characters are the “real” life inspirations for the characters in the original novel that then got adapted into the film. That’s basically the entirety of the plot and it sounds like the worst. Let’s go!

Rumor Has It… (2005) – BMeTric: 43.3

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(Huh. I declare this a popular below-average film. But look at how it sustains itself at 5.5 … very interesting, kind of like it is a truly terrible movie, no regression to the mean. But I’m not sure I’ve seen such a profile for a slightly below average film yet. It really shot out to a pretty impressive 40 BMeTric as well. All around a pleasant surprise.)

Leonard Maltin – 1.5 stars –  While home for her sister’s wedding, Aniston becomes convinced that her late mother, grandmother MacLaine, and future techno-magnate Costner inspired the Charles Webb novel that became The Graduate. Premise is icky (Aniston goes on a fling with a guy she initially thought was her father!) without being pointed. MacLaine gives it a shot with acerbic but unfunny rejoinders. If The Graduate didn’t still “live,” this would be pretty close to grave robbing.

(Now this is a movie Leonard watched. I could kind of predict his attitude: hates it for playing off a far more more interesting and successful film, but probably likes MacLaine in general and so resists writing the whole thing off. From what I remember that ickiness comes through even in the trailer, so I’m not really sure what they were thinking there.)

Trailer – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hMmamhnHZo4

(Oooof. Let’s just pour out a little bit in recognition that Adele’s song Rumor Has It would have been ALL OVER this trailer if this came out now. Also, Ruffalo playing the shy kind of weird guy … I forgot that used to kind of be this thing. He’s been the Hulk for so long it is hard to even process. The trailer is a throwback for a movie whose ultimate crime was that it feels like it should have come out in 1995)

Directors – Rob Reiner – (Known For: The Princess Bride; Stand by Me; This Is Spinal Tap; A Few Good Men; Misery; The Bucket List; Flipped; When Harry Met Sally…; The American President; LBJ; BMT: North (BMT); Rumor Has It…; Alex & Emma; The Story of Us; And So It Goes; Notes:  Nominated for the Razzie Award in 1995 for Worst Director for North; I like Reiner, primarily because I could watch the first five movies on that list any day of the week, almost the epitome of the movies I started watching just as I was “getting into” film and starting to look to the immediate past. His next film has to do with journalists investigating the claim the Saddam Hussein had weapons of mass destruction in the lead up to the Iraq War … yeah, he’s somewhat of a political activist.)

Writers – Ted Griffin (written by) (as T.M. Griffin) – (Known For: Ocean’s Eleven; Tower Heist; Matchstick Men; Ravenous; Best Laid Plans; BMT: Killers (BMT); Rumor Has It…; Solace; Notes:  Not in the trivia: Reiner replaced Ted Griffin twelve days into principal photography. Can’t tell why, but Griffin never really directed a feature, so perhaps he realized he was in over his head.)

Actors – Jennifer Aniston – (Known For: Office Christmas Party; Storks; Office Space; We’re the Millers; The Iron Giant; Horrible Bosses; He’s Just Not That Into You; Marley & Me; Bruce Almighty; Cake; Wanderlust; The Switch; She’s Funny That Way; Life of Crime; Rock Star; The Good Girl; She’s the One; BMT: Leprechaun (BMT); Mac and Me (BMT); The Bounty Hunter (BMT); Rumor Has It…; Love Happens; The Break-Up; Mother’s Day (BMT); Along Came Polly; ‘Til There Was You; Horrible Bosses 2; Just Go with It (BMT); Notes:  Nominated for the Razzie Award in 2011 for Worst Actress for The Switch, and The Bounty Hunter; Nominated for the Razzie Award in 2012 for Worst Screen Couple for Just Go with It, and in 2011 for The Bounty Hunter; Nominated for the Razzie Award in 1997 for Worst New Star; Obviously most well known for Friends. Her father, John Aniston, has been on Days of Our Lives since 1986 and has appeared in nearly 2500 episodes.)

Mark Ruffalo – (Known For: Avengers: Age of Ultron; Spotlight; Avengers Assemble; Shutter Island; Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind; Zodiac; Now You See Me; Iron Man Three; Begin Again; Collateral; Foxcatcher; 13 Going on 30; The Last Castle; Where the Wild Things Are; Date Night; Margaret; You Can Count on Me; The Kids Are All Right; Just Like Heaven; Thanks for Sharing; The Brothers Bloom; Infinitely Polar Bear; Blindness; BMT: View from the Top; Rumor Has It…; In the Cut; The Dentist; 54; Windtalkers; All the King’s Men; Now You See Me 2; Notes:  Was to appear in Signs instead of Joaquin Phoenix, but he was diagnosed with a brain tumor and had to drop out. It was benign and after brain surgery he was fine.)

Shirley MacLaine – (Known For: The Secret Life of Walter Mitty; Steel Magnolias; Being There; Terms of Endearment; The Apartment; Ocean’s Eleven; Bernie; In Her Shoes; Postcards from the Edge; Artists and Models; Around the World in Eighty Days; Two Mules for Sister Sara; The Trouble with Harry; Defending Your Life; The Children’s Hour; Irma la Douce; The Turning Point; Some Came Running; Guarding Tess; BMT: Bewitched; Cannonball Run II; Rumor Has It…; Valentine’s Day (BMT); A Smile Like Yours; The Evening Star; Notes:  Nominated for the Razzie Award in 1985 for Worst Actress for Cannonball Run II; Brother of Warren Beatty. Too much about her to even figure out what to say, but we’ll see her in Cannonball Run II for sure.)

Budget/Gross – $70 million / Domestic: $43,000,262 (Worldwide: $88,933,562)

#6 on the Worst Openings – Saturated chart

(Pretty rough stuff. Number six worst opening is nuts, just a little better than Hoot! … HOOT! We’ve seen the number 9 and 10 on the list, and Victor Frankenstein will be in the mix soon enough.)

#99 for the Romantic Comedy genre

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(right above Mannequin. Norbit was the most recent one I’ve (re)watched at a dominating 29th. Romantic comedy really hit a peak from 2000-2010, and since then it has kind of dropped off the map. Perhaps previously it was the be-all-end-all of movies geared towards women? And now with the surge in alternatives romantic comedies are the first to get relegated to VOD? Plausible.)

Rotten Tomatoes – 20% (22/111): This riff on The Graduate has a solid cast, but is too lightweight to fully register.

(Solid cast, so not just Leonard seems to think so. The number of reviews is impressive. This was a big release on the year and it just crashed and burned. I suppose the note about changing directors at the last minute makes it all make a bit of sense though.)

Poster – Rumor Sklogs It … (D-)

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(No bueno. Why is there sky in the background? Why is there so much white? Why is the spacing so weird? Why is any of this like this? Only good thing is that they at least tried a little bit on the font… otherwise this is a masterclass on what not to do.)

Tagline(s) – Based on a true rumor. (D)

(Hahaha. Rumor Has It… Based on a true rumor. It really has a nice ring to it. Amateur hour up in here. At least it’s short.)

Keyword(s) – biological father; Top Ten by BMeTric: 48.6 The Ten (2007); 43.3 Rumor Has It… (2005); 25.1 Daddy’s Home (2015); 19.9 The Fifth Estate (2013); 18.7 Dance with Me (1998); 18.2 Duets (2000); 17.9 Mamma Mia! (2008); 16.6 Delivery Man (2013); 10.9 Potiche (2010); 9.6 Dirty Girl (2010);

(None! None of the keywords were particularly good. At least this one had Mama Mia! This keyword should just be called Mama Mia!-esque.)

Notes – Early in the film’s pre-production stages, Dustin Hoffman and Anne Bancroft were strongly considered for the roles of Beau Burroughs and Katherine Richelieu. But when Bancroft died and Hoffman had filming commitments for several other projects, the roles were given to Kevin Costner and Shirley MacLaine. (Oh shit, that would have actually have been cool … for ten minutes and then once the novelty wore off the movie would be just as big of a disaster)

Shirley MacLaine was originally offered the role of Elaine in The Graduate (1967), but turned it down.

Along with President Bill Clinton and Fidel Castro, the picture on the far left is Beau (Kevin Costner) with Rob Reiner (the director). Hugh M. Hefner was originally supposed to be pictured, but Hefner objected at the last minute; Reiner was added in digitally. (Ha)

The Huttinger family house is the same house from Father of the Bride (1991). (fun fact)

The film takes place in 1997. (A period piece!!!! Yes. I hope this is incredibly obvious for no reason)

With only a 35-year age difference between them, Shirley MacLaine was really too young to be playing the grandmother of Jennifer Aniston. (True, Aniston’s father is roughly the same age as MacLaine)