You're probably aware of what Christian Mingle is and what it's about. But if somehow you haven't seen one of their cloying TV commercials, it's a dating site. And it's aimed at a specific demographic: devout Christians who are looking for a personal relationship with someone other than Jesus for awhile, with maybe a little light snake-handling on the side.
At any rate, Christian Mingle happens to also be the name of a movie that's coming out in October, and director Corbin Bernsen (yes, that Corbin Bernsen) insists that the movie is "not an ad or paid promotional piece for the dating website." But as far as we can tell, hoo boy, is that a load of bullshit. As much as Arnie Becker would like to deny the fact that this movie is one long commercial for a site that helps religious people thump one another instead of their Bibles, let's take a look at why that just might be exactly what it is.
#4. It's You've Got Mail, Only More In-Your-Face and Stupid
The 1998 movie You've Got Mail also had a title that was clearly a direct reference to an existing product: the now-quaint inbox voice alert from AOL. Sure, it was a blatant tie-in, and though there was definitely an outside corporate influence on the film, nobody left the theater feeling like they were duped. Even if it was one of the more obvious examples of brand placement at the time, AOL executives weren't exactly there in the theater singing the praises of Netscape and flinging discs out into the audience (like they did with the nation's mailboxes). The association was there, but everyone involved pretty much kept their mouths shut about it. But Christian Mingle, from all appearances, lays their message on thick.
Home Theater Films
"And lo, the Lord did say unto his flock, that to mingle is divine,
and those that mingle shall surely enter into the kingdom of Heaven."
Summer blockbusters have officially begun an agonizingly visible decline into bittersweet oblivion, like the Terminator giving a thumbs-up while being slowly dipped into a cauldron of boiling steel. Summer 2014 saw the most dismal box office turnout in eight years, which included the worst 4th of July weekend since 1987 both in terms of gross receipts and comedic remakes of old cop shows.
Universal Studios, Columbia Pictures
Pictured: 1987 (left), 2014 (right)
If you're anything like us, you spend nearly half of your day fact-checking endless digital headlines in a tireless, sometimes rage-fueled search for what's true and what is just a big wad of cyber-malarkey. If you're not like us (read: you have a life), luckily there's a place where you can easily tell the bullshit from the bulltruth. Hint: you're reading it right now.
So once again, here we are at the rocky cliffs overlooking the ocean of lies we call viral news, attempting to catch the torrent of hyperbolic stories plunging down like lemming after lemming. And yes, we're aware lemmings don't actually do that; we were being hyperbolic ourselves. And yes, we see the irony in that. Shut up.
#4. A Church Isn't Going to Stop the Next Game of Thrones Nude Scene
At its core, Game of Thrones is pretty much a grand, honorary opus to tits and blood. Reduce that, and it's just a bunch of stoic British people eating at fancy events. This is no doubt why the following news hit the Internet harder than Valyrian steel to the junk:
"Bloody murders? All good."
Back in 2008, DC Comics had massive success with The Dark Knight. And now that Marvel's space opera about a low-vocabulary tree-man is the highest-grossing movie of the year, DC is more than eager to hop back aboard the hype train, unaware that they've aimed it squarely off a cliff. Their main problems?
#4. DC's Doing the Exact Opposite of What Made Marvel Successful
DC can't just copy Marvel's film formula, so they're contrasting. Namely, DC's embracing the gritty overtones of the Christopher Nolan Bat-trilogy -- which printed a shit-ton of Bat-dollars, reactions to The Dark Knight Rises notwithstanding -- instead of Marvel's pop superheroics.
Also, DC is flip-flopping the structure of The Avengers. In that film, Marvel took an armful of superheroes -- most of whom had prior films to establish their characters -- and tossed them all into the same darn movie. If you hated Thor, it didn't matter -- you could ignore that character and instead relish Iron Man's banter, Captain America's befuddled good looks, or Hawkeye's, uh, Hawk-stuff.
This was a nice dessert after a well-made meal. Justice League is just a high dive into a swimming pool of ice-cream headache.