Reviews, articles, rants & ramblings on the darker side of the media fringe

Posts tagged “Violence

The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies – Comic Con Trailer

Peter Jackson’s bloated Hobbit trilogy wraps with the final chapter The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies which he gave fans a sneak peek at over the weekend at Comic-Con. Warner Bros. has now released the trailer first seen in Hall H at the convention, in which the heroes of Middle Earth must contend with the ferocious dragon Smaug and the fast-mobilizing forces of Sauron, the latter of which took center stage in The Lord Of The Rings. Here’s the new look at the December 17 release set to hit theaters in 3D, 2D, IMAX, and the awful High Frame Rate 3D.


Mad Max: Fury Road – Comic Con Trailer

Warner Bros. publicly unveiled the first footage from Mad Max: Fury Road yesterday in Hall H at Comic Con, and I wish I could have seen it on the big screen. This looks like an IMAX trip because it is staggeringly huge. Director George Miller described the film as being right in line with his three previous Max films — “a very simple allegory, almost a Western on wheels.”


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Avengers 2: The Age of Ultron – Comic Con Poster

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The Last Of Us – Sam Raimi

the-last-of-us-remasteredSam Raimi was at comic-con with Neil Druckmann, creator of the Naughty Dog game The Last Of Us, to talk about how that PlayStation 3 survival horror action game is being turned into a feature with Raimi producing and Druckmann now writing the screenplay. Screen Gems President Clint Culpepper, whose previous big videogame-to-movie transfer was Resident Evil, basically has given over big creative controls to Druckmann in the movie transfer. That includes casting, and choice of director.

At this point, Hugh Jackman and Josh Brolin have been the consensus fan favorites to play the role of Joel, and the choice most heavily favored to play Ellie is Maisie Williams, the Game Of Thrones star who’s so sparked about this prospect that she would have shown up for today’s panel were she not waylaid by being part of an Entertainment Weekly cover shoot for Game Of Thrones.

Said Raimi: “It’s gonna be a great character journey, a great love story, and great horror fiction.” Raimi also took a moment to tease the prospect of more Evil Dead: “I always loved working on that series with Bruce Campbell and Rob Tapert, and my brother and I are writing the Evil Dead TV show right now… with Bruce Campbell.” They even toyed with the idea of having Campbell be in the Last Of Us film adaptation, Campbell has been intertwined with Raimi since 1981′s The Evil Dead. That film, by the way, is a touchstone for Druckmann and the creatives behind the Naughty Dog vidgame empire.


Halo: Nightfall

I’m not usually interested in these gaming/movie crossovers as they are generally a bit shit… However, Microsoft just released this first-look trailer of Halo: Nightfall, the live-action series coming in November from Ridley Scott’s Scott Free Productions and Microsoft’s 343 Industries. The story is set between the events in the fourth and fifth Halo video games (Halo 5: Guardians is coming next year).

The live-action five-part series follows a new character,  Jameson Locke, described as “a legendary manhunter and agent with the Office of Naval Intelligence (ONI), Earth’s most powerful and secretive military branch.” After a biological attack, Locke and his unit unravel a plot and track down an ancient artifact. The series will be part of The Master Chief Collection, the remastered set of the first four Halo games that Microsoft announced during E3 last month and set to debut in November.


The Hobbit: Battle of the Five Armies

Finally, The Hobbit: Battle of the Five Armies poster was released at Comic Con… that means this bloated series will soon be over…

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The Thing – Storyboard to Film Comparison

The visuals of both the desolate Antarctic and the ever-morphing alien creatures in THE THING were envisioned long before the movie was shot. Extensive storyboards were drawn by artist Michael Ploog so that all the departments of the production were on the same page in their preparation for the shoot. This is nothing new…but the similarity between the storyboards and the final imagery shot by legendary DP Dean Cundey is staggering. Storyboards are often only a guide, but in this film they were so specifically rendered that they became gospel. The detail and artistry of Ploog’s work up front, allowed the crew to have clear and defined goals on those frigid shooting days in both Alaska and Canada.

THE THING – Storyboard to Film Comparison from Vashi Nedomansky on Vimeo.


True Detective – By Javier Vera Lainez

Madrid based graphic designer/ illustrator Javier Vera Lainez has taken his love of the hit HBO series, True Detective to the next level with some sensational prints. He has done one print per episode in a silhouette style that is reminiscent of the Star Wars series by Olly Moss (which can be seen HERE). You can purchase individual prints or as a series HERE. Click on the image to see full size individual posters.

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Snowpiercer **

snowpiercer-posterAfter a prolonged ‘disagreement’ between director Bong Joon Ho and distributor Harvey Weinstein over the length and pacing of Joon-Ho’s Snowpiercer the film was finally released in the States earlier this month and here in Australia this week. It wasn’t worth the wait. The film, which stars Chris Evans, Tilda Swinton, Octavia Spencer, Jamie Bell, John Hurt and Ed Harris has done well in Korea and France and has gotten strong reviews… and I’m perplexed as to why.

Snowpiercer is an adaptation of French graphic novel La Transperceneige by Jacques Lob and Jean-Marc Rochette. The Snowpiercer of the title is a massive train that travels around the world via a perpetual motion engine in a future frozen wasteland. The train is massive, divided into the spacious front and middle carriages in which the wealthy and privileged live in relative luxury while the lower classes are crammed into the back few carriages, living in squalor and fear for their lives. Led by Chris Evans, it’s the ‘Masses Against the Classes’ as the inhabitants from the back of the train fight their way to the front…

I had high expectations for Snowpiercer, the source material is good, and Bong Joon Ho’s previous films, The Host (2006) and Mother (2009) are exceptional examples of their relative genres. Snowpiercer starts well; is beautifully shot, it looks incredible and continues to look incredible throughout. The performances are all fine, the cast is very strong for a genre flick, Tilda Swinton is always great and I like John Hurt and Jamie Bell. It has some fantastically graphic violence and some oddly dark humour. All aspects that would generally make for an enjoyable genre flick, but for some reason it just didn’t work for me.

I think one of its main problems is it’s not sure what it wants to be. It made no sense, you can get away with stereotypical dialogue and nonsensical set-ups and reveals in graphic novels as you are generally more forgiving with the format. Transferred to film we expect more, and visuals aside Snowpiercer doesn’t provide anything else. I’m sure that fans of the film will point to its world society in microcosm, a dark satire and declare it a ‘thoughtful’ piece of work, and ‘damning world view of the future’ or some random rubbish.

Without spoiling it, I really hated the ending. When Evans finally gets to the front of the train, not a spoiler, the ‘mythical designer/operator’ reveal just made no sense and descends into nonsense rapidly. If anyone is really shocked or amazed at the ending they probably haven’t seen many good films. It’s inspired and sloppy, stylish and dumb.

To my mind, Harvey Weinstein was probably right this time around… he should have been allowed to cut it.


Herbert White by James Franco

James Franco is everywhere these days. Between acting in just about everything and directing feature after feature, it seems safe to say that he’s in the prime of his creative output. In terms of his directorial efforts, Franco definitely has an affinity for adapting tough pieces of literature, like his upcoming feature Child of God, which is based on a novel by Cormac McCarthy, plus As I Lay Dying and The Sound and the Fury, both of which are based upon William Faulkner novels previously thought to be unadaptable. The adaptations didn’t start with that recent trio of films, however, but in the late 2000′s with several short films based on poems. One of these short film adaptations comes from a Frank Bidart poem called Herbert White, and, as luck would have it, it’s is probably one of the most disturbing films that you will ever see… and it stars Michael Shannon. Click on the link below… WARNING: Some people may find subject matter disturbing.

http://www.vice.com/read/james-francos-short-film-herbert-white-450?utm_source=vicefbus#ooid=s3Zm41bjq9sxnP227Lbe5ZeH78w-VHWR

If you’re interested you can check out the original poem HERE


Snowpiercer – Reprinted by Titan

Titan Comics is a division of Titan Publishing who, as well as releasing all-new monthly comics titles, continues to restore and reprint the best classic comics, bringing back seminal titles of yesterday in deluxe volumes. They have just released a translated version of the 1982 French graphic novel “La Transperceneige“, which is the basis of the upcoming movie, Snowpiercer, starring Chris Evans.

The dystopian tale takes place after a failed global-warming experiment kills off most life on the planet. The final survivors board the SNOWPIERCER, a train that travels around the globe via a perpetual-motion engine. The train is massive, 1, 001 carriages, with the lower classes crammed into the back, living in vile neglect as the rich and privileged live towards the front of the train in luxury. When cryptic messages incite the passengers to revolt, the train thrusts full-throttle towards disaster.

The film is currently out but pick up the graphic novels to see author Jacques Lob and artist, Jean-Marc Rochette’s original vision in all its glory… it’s much better than the film. Review next week. Here is a look at the trailer for the movie that stars: Chris Evans, Song Kang Ho, Tilda Swinton, Jamie Bell, Octavia Spencer, John Hurt, and Ed Harris.


Universal Look To Relaunch Monster Franchises

universal-monstersNot sure how I feel about this, I’m still scarred from that vile Van Helsing movie… Universal Pictures most enduring legacy is its library of classic movie monsters that include Frankenstein, Dracula, The Wolf Man, Creature Of The Black Lagoon, The Invisible Man, Bride Of Frankenstein, and The Mummy. Universal is now dedicating renewed resources and an unprecedented, far-reaching commitment to revitalise its monster heritage.

The studio is in early stages of developing a substantial new production endeavor that will expand and unify a network of classic characters and stories. The architects of that narrative will be Alex Kurtzman and Chris Morgan. Kurtzman recently broke with partner Roberto Orci, but his big-scale projects have included Transformers, Star Trek and The Amazing Spider-Man. Morgan is the writer behind five installments of The Fast And The Furious, which has been Universal’s most reliably lucrative franchise. It’s not set in stone yet if either will write, but they will soon be going around town enlisting talent to bring new cinematic life to these enduring characters from lore, literature and Universal’s own library. While Universal has selectively tapped its Movie Monster library for The Mummy, Van Helsing, The Wolfman, and the upcoming Dracula Untold, this will be the first time that the studio has formalized an approach to these classic characters in a cohesive, connected way rather than as a series of stand-alone projects by disparate filmmaking teams.

They’ve begun the meetings to put together an interconnected slate of Monster films, and the first will be a reboot of The Mummy, which will be released April 22, 2016. Part of their duty will be to work closely with production, marketing, promotions and consumer product to support the revival. They will also reevaluate projects which have preexisting attachments, and bring it under one cohesive strategy.

Obviously some of those monster pictures haven’t panned out. With Marvel Studios and Disney building a billion-dollar business relying on the Marvel Comics superhero character library, Universal seems to be trawling it’s heritage and is looking to dust off and modernize the classic movie monsters that inspired many of the movie monsters we see today.

I’m just wary…


Dawn of the Planet of the Apes – Concept Art

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Check out this incredible concept art for Dawn of the Planet of the Apes by the Aaron Sims Company, you can see more of their work on the official website HERE including images and sculpt (Caesar below) from Rise of the Planet of the Apes.

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Sin City: A Dame To Kill For – Trailer 2

The latest Sin City: A Dame To Kill For trailer…. character introductions.


American Psycho on Broadway!

american-psycho_final-posterOff-Broadway powerhouse Second Stage will present the U.S. premiere of the much praised (and much debated) American Psycho, the musical adaptation of Bret Easton Ellis’ 1991 novel (and 2000 Christian Bale-starring film) about excess, murder and flashing the right labels. The show — with music by Duncan Sheik, book by Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa, staging by Rupert Goold and a starring performance by Matt “Dr. Who” Smith – opened last December at London’s Almeida Theatre and was considered a shoo-in for Broadway next season. It still may be.

That’s a challenge for the Ellis novel, which prompted furious protests from feminist and human rights groups in reaction to its explicit, play-by-play depiction of the brutal torture and murder of women at the hands of protagonist Patrick Bateman, which the book’s defenders insisted was satire of a society gone mad with material obsession and moral vacuity. The musical has inspired almost inevitable comparisons to Sweeney Todd.

54 Below Press Preview With Duncan Sheik, Sierra Boggess, Alice Ripley, Paulo Szot, Anat Cohen And Maucha Adnet,The Almeida production of American Psycho prompted mostly favorable reviews along with some dissenting voices: “Goold’s production [has] a cool wit that actually enhances the story’s satire,” wrote Michael Billington in The Guardian. “Sheik’s music also evokes Bateman’s Eighties pop icons, such as Phil Collins, and provides an ironic commentary on the action. Instead of stand-alone songs Sheik gives us music that reflects the world the characters inhabit…This is a show that confirms the mythic power of Easton Ellis’s story and leaves us all dangerously entertained.”

american-psycho_matt-smithCharles Spencer, in The Telegraph, demurred: Sheik, he wrote, had told an interviewer that he initially thought it ” ‘was the worst idea for a musical ever.’ I rather agree, but although I cordially disliked this show, I suspect it is going to be a big hit and that a transfer to either the West End or Broadway is inevitable, especially since it stars the soon to be retired Doctor Who, Matt Smith as the psychotic Patrick Bateman…You could sense the audience lapping up this empty mixture of ironic style and sudden moments of violence, and there is no doubt that Rupert Goold’s production is smart and sharp. But like the novel on which it is based, it is also glib, heartless and pretentious.”


American Horror Story: Freakshow. Promo #1

FX has released its first official teaser for American Horror Story’s upcoming fourth season, subtitled Freak Show. It features a representation of the previously revealed killer clown having forced a young girl into being mutilated into a fallen angel.


Game of Thrones Season 4 – Mackevision VFX Showreel

Mackevision is proud to be along with other world-class VFX studios part of the Game of Thrones saga. Check out their showreel from Game of Thrones, Season 4. Some SPOILER SHOTS…

Game of Thrones, Season 4 – VFX making of reel from Mackevision on Vimeo.


Indiana Jones – Poster Series

Awesome print series featuring Indiana Jones and the 3 Good Movies in the Series… Click on the poster and see larger individual posters of each movie.

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Restoration – Kickstarter Promo

RestorationRestoration is an online miniseries that follows in the tradition of the sci-fi we love : Philip K. Dick, Black Mirror, Twilight Zone, Warren Ellis & many others. We are taking a big sci-fi concept, fascinating characters, and weaving them together to tell a (hopefully) compelling and mind-bending story. It’s sci-fi with a soul. Because that is what we love and what we do.

Restoration explores what it means to be human. In what ways does the mind drive the body, and in what ways does the body drive the mind?

Many of us would’ve experienced that strange moment when you’ve driven home and you realise you can’t remember driving the car there. Now imagine being in a body that you think is yours and it drives your car somewhere else entirely – a place that is completely foreign to you.

That idea is at the heart of Restoration.

2019. A company – RESTORATION LIFE SERVICES – offers individuals the service of having their memories downloaded for backup. So, in the event of death, those memories can be uploaded into a new body, a generic host, nicknamed a “jerry”.

After a routine backup, Oliver Klein wakes up to find that his memories have been restored into a body that is not his own. Trapped in this foreign body, Oliver Klein struggles to reconnect with his family and his life, and must come face-to-face-with the truth that he is not the only Oliver Klein.

And this foreign body? It has its own “muscle memory”*. Soon, Oliver discovers that he is capable of doing things the original Oliver never could and never would.

Check out their Kickstarter page HERE


Night of the Living Dead – By Killian Eng

Awesome poster for Romero’s classic Night of the Living Dead by Killian Eng. Available online HERE from July 15th.

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The Conjuring’s Annabelle Gets Her Own Movie

Conjuring_AnnabelleFor all those fans of creepy dolls in movies, your wish has been granted. Warner Bros and New Line have made an October 3 date with Annabelle, the doll from their horror hit The Conjuring. The companies had set aside the frame for an Untitled New Line Horror Film, making the date and title official with their Conjuring spin-off. WB/New Line also have sequel The Conjuring 2 set to be released October 23, 2015. Annabelle, directed by John R. Leonetti and written by Gary Dauberman, is neither a prequel nor a sequel but centers on the doll seen in the 1970’s Rhode Island-set Conjuring, which starred Vera Farmiga and Patrick Wilson and was directed by James Wan. Peter Safran and Wan are producing Annabelle , which stars Annabelle Wallis (Peaky Blinders), Ward Horton, and Alfre Woodard.


Guardians of the Galaxy – Simon Delart

Guardians of the Galaxy print by Simon Delart. Click on the image for full size individual prints.

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At The Mountains of Madness

Ath-the-Mountains-of-Madness_Guillermo-del-ToroAs dogged as ever, Guillermo del Toro is still desperate to being us an adaptation of H.P. Lovecraft’s At the Mountains of Madness? Well, he’s willing to compromise with Universal Pictures, against his better judgement, stating that he’ll make the creature feature a PG-13 horror film.

The 3-D film originally had Tom Cruise in talks to star, but also had a ballooning budget of over $120M, which was a lot considering del Toro wanted it to be R-rated. The studio killed the movie, which resulted in us being gifted with Pacific Rim, among other great stuff like the forthcoming “The Strain.”

Del Toro now has a blooming relationship with Legendary Pictures, producers behind the project, and in an interview with the WSJ reveals that At the Mountains of Madness may be back in his cards.

I said to them, that’s the movie that I would really love to do one day, and it’s still expensive, it’s still … I think that now, with the way I’ve seen PG-13 become more and more flexible, I think I could do it PG-13 now, so I’m going to explore it with [Legendary], to be as horrifying as I can, but to not be quite as graphic. There’s basically one or two scenes in the book that people don’t remember that are pretty graphic. Namely, for example, the human autopsy that the aliens do, which is a very shocking moment. But I think I can find ways of doing it.

We’ll see. It’s certainly a possibility in the future. Legendary was very close to doing it at one point, so I know they love the screenplay. So, we’ll see. Hopefully it’ll happen. It’s certainly one of the movies I would love to do.

Guillermo-del-Toro_At-the-Mountains-of-MadnessMadness is the deliberately told and increasingly chilling recollection of an Antarctic expedition’s uncanny discoveries-and their encounter with untold menace in the ruins of a lost civilization-is a milestone of macabre literature.

In this day of studio control it’s always hard to trust the filmmakers to do what’s right for the movie, but if del Toro thinks he can pull it off with a PG-13, well, I’m he’s one of the few I’m happy to believe in.

Unfortunately, it looks like this could take a back seat to Pacific Rim 2, which he briefly talks about.

I don’t want to spoil it, but I think at the end of the second movie, people will find out that the two movies stand on their own. They’re very different from each other, although hopefully bringing the same joyful giant spectacle. But the tenor of the two movies will be quite different.

Read the full interview at the Wall Street Journal link HERE


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Rest But In Death – Berni Wrightson

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