The annoying trend of studios predeterming MPAA ratings to stir hype

“An R-rated movie from the Jim Henson company!? I’m in!”

That was me a few years ago when “The Happytime Murders” was announced. I love The Muppets and all the work the Jim Henson Company has done.

This… does not look good.

There’s been a trend lately that I hope dies: Production companies determine their MPAA rating before pre-production in order to stir up hype.

However, the script and resulting film should determine its rating. Articles talk about Tarantino’s “R-rated Star Trek,” yet it hasn’t been written.

The story should dictate the MPAA rating and this trend is a blatant example of studios having too much control in the creative process.

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Last Man on Earth fan theory: Tandy is the last man on Earth

It was announced yesterday that, in an attempt to be less humorous and all-around good, Fox has cancelled “Last Man on Earth,” “Brooklyn Nine-Nine,” and “The Mick.”

“Brooklyn Nine-Nine” is a fan favorite and the fanbase has been shouting. It’s all but guranteed that the cop show will return, maybe on Hulu.

Then there’s “Last Man on Earth,” a show with a strong first season that delves into low-budget slapstick and giddiness as it moves on through its four seasons.

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The Rise of Donald Glover

“Atlanta” is Donald Glover’s dream project.

The show has steadily evolved from surreal comedy to straight-up surreal. I’ve never seen such anxiety-inducing television than I have with the last five episodes. The previous episode “FUBU” showed me that I may have some PTSD leftover from my middle school years.

Anyway, it’s easily the most ambitious show on television right now. I’m happy to see Glover’s vision realized here because so much has culminated to this point in his career.

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Modern Cult Classics: Selma

Ava DuVernay’s “Selma” had a completely botched Oscar campaign. With a late, limited release date accompanied by poor advertising the film only managed to receive 2 Oscar nominations – Best Picture and Original Song.

Even though it’d win the ladder, the lack of nominations for it and “Beasts of No Nation” contributed to the “OscarsSoWhite” backlash when all four acting categories failed to nominate a person of color.

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Handmaid’s Tale and Westworld in danger of becoming repetitive

Take “Game of Thrones” as a quality example. Yes, last season sucked, but the show has always done its own thing – been a commentary on the unpredictability of chaos of war.

“Handmaid’s Tale” has given itself the burden of political commentary. In a sense, it needs to become effective art. The unfortunate side effect to commentary is that serial art (like television) needs to change – it must be broad.

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Rockstar and the value of a $60 game

Gamers hate DLC, plain and simple. At least that use to be the consensus. We alreadypaid $60; we deserve our game.

Over time arguments were made and having a system that adds content for the gamer and increases revenue for the developer could be a win-win situation.

You pay $60 for an amount of content worth $60, then it’s not that big of deal to drop more money once more content becomes available.

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Loot Boxes illegal in Belgium. Publishers could face a fine or prison sentence.

EuroGamer.net has the story that broke earlier this week:

The Belgian Gaming Commission looked at Star Wars Battlefront 2, FIFA 18, Overwatch and Counter-Strike: Global Offensive and found only Star Wars was not in violation of the country’s gambling legislation – and that’s only because EA stripped out the game’s loot boxes after its launch debacle.

It determined FIFA 18, Overwatch and CS:GO’s loot boxes are a game of chance and so are subject to Belgian gambling law. Battlefront 2, at the time the investigation was conducted, did not have loot boxes, so escapes unscathed.

A statement from Minister of Justice Koen Geens said FIFA 18, Overwatch and CS:GO were therefore illegal and demanded their loot boxes removed. If they’re not, the publishers “risk a prison sentence of up to five years and a fine of up to 800,000 euros”. When minors are involved, those punishments can be doubled, Geens added.

The article goes on to provide a statement from EA, a devilish corporation, that only produces DLC and devises ways to profit from it.

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Modern Cult Classics: “Life is Strange”

This one is easily a cult classic. Since the term “cult” derives here from “culture,” then “Life is Strange” has the title pegged.

One glance at the “Life is Strange” subreddit shows you that the game has left behind a sizeable fanbase producing artwork and fan-fiction around the clock.

Although the game received mostly positive reviews upon release, there were a few holdouts. Critics expressed that this may be one of the strongest games of the Choose-Your-Own-Adventure format, however stated that the dialogue and variety of choices were lackluster.

The fans pay no mind to the detractors though and happily express their love for this strong, poignant story.