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


Westworld Season 2 – Teasers

As we near the start of Westworld Season 2, the marketing machine has clicked into gear, teasing with a new teaser , revised new website HERE and cool poster with hidden binary code. Producers Jonathan Nolan spoke to EW today:

“We don’t like to endlessly build mystery; we like to settle our debts by the end of the season,” Nolan said. “We want to feel like the show is rocketing ahead. The first season was a journey inward; this is a journey outward. It’s a search for what else is in the park, and what else is beyond the park.”


As this show attempts to question our understanding of reality, we still haven’t explored outside the confines of this manufactured theme park.

“If we were to describe the show as one camera angle, it would be a steady pull out revealing more and more context,” Nolan says. “So as the hosts learn more about their world—and other worlds, and the real world—the audience is doing the same thing.”

While the creators were hesitant to say if they’d be spending much time in Shogun World, they do confirm that it will take place outside of Westworld.

“This year is much more of a road show—Sweetwater isn’t home anymore,” Nolan tells EW, teasing that leaving behind Westworld is only the beggining into where and when the real world begins. “These hosts don’t live on the same time frame we do and don’t have the four-year life span of replicants [like in Blade Runner]. If left to their own devices, they could live forever. So our story has some real scope to it.”

Certainly they’ve left it open for the inevitable Seasons 3-7, but for now, I can’t wait to see where Season 2 takes us next month.

Making Apes: The Artists Who Changed Film – Indiegogo Campaign

A fantastic Indiegogo campaign for all fans of Planet of the Apes. For over a century, Makeup Artists have dazzled audiences by creating extraordinary characters and creatures on screen. They make the impossible seem possible. 50 years ago, a group of ambitious artists led by JOHN CHAMBERS and TOM BURMAN ushered in a new era in cinema with their ground-breaking work on PLANET OF THE APES.
Now… MAKING APES: THE ARTISTS WHO CHANGED FILM is telling that incredible story!

Back the project HERE

MAKING APES: THE ARTISTS WHO CHANGED FILM is an upcoming feature length documentary about the Hollywood makeup artists who created the iconic makeups seen in the original 1968 classic Planet of the Apes and their impact on cinema.

Featuring interviews with makeup artists and actors from the original film franchise, modern makeup artists and filmmakers who were deeply influenced by the franchise and film historians who recognize Planet of the Apes as a breakthrough moment in cinema, this is a story 50 years in the making.

Many regard Planet of the Apes as a breakthrough moment for the motion picture industry. It is the film that proved anything could be done on screen. The impact was so great that makeup artist John Chambers was presented an Honorary Academy Award for Excellence in Makeup almost 12 years before The Oscars created a yearly category for the craft.

BLADE RUNNER 2049 – “Black Out 2022” Anime Short

In 2022, an EMP detonation has caused a global blackout that has massive, destructive implications all over the world. Directed by Cowboy Bebop and Samurai Champloo’s Shinichiro Watanabe, Blade Runner Black Out 2022 is a new and highly-anticipated animated short which serves as a prologue for the upcoming feature film Blade Runner 2049. — Thirty years after the events of the first film, a new blade runner, LAPD Officer K (Ryan Gosling), unearths a long-buried secret that has the potential to plunge what’s left of society into chaos. K’s discovery leads him on a quest to find Rick Deckard (Harrison Ford), a former LAPD blade runner who has been missing for 30 years.
This is the 3rd and final Blade Runner 2049 prequel short.


BLADE RUNNER 2049 – “2048: Nowhere to Run” Short

Journey into the world 2049 with a replicant on the run. Dave Bautista is Sapper Morton.

Thirty years after the events of the first film, a new blade runner, LAPD Officer K (Ryan Gosling), unearths a long-buried secret that has the potential to plunge what’s left of society into chaos. K’s discovery leads him on a quest to find Rick Deckard (Harrison Ford), a former LAPD blade runner who has been missing for 30 years.

The second of 3 Blade Runner 2049 short films.

BLADE RUNNER 2049 – “2036: Nexus Dawn” Short

Welcome to 2036. Niander Wallace introduces his new line of replicants.

Thirty years after the events of the first film, a new blade runner, LAPD Officer K (Ryan Gosling), unearths a long-buried secret that has the potential to plunge what’s left of society into chaos. K’s discovery leads him on a quest to find Rick Deckard (Harrison Ford), a former LAPD blade runner who has been missing for 30 years.

The first of 3 Blade Runner 2049 Short Films.

IT Easter Eggs…

Courtesy of Hilary Busis at Vanity Fair: At one point in the new adaptation of It, poor Ben Hanscom (played by Jeremy Ray Taylor) goes on a literal Easter egg hunt. His search, naturally, ends with a horrifying discovery—but what the character may not realize is that he’s surrounded by Easter eggs all the time, sly little references to both the Stephen King novel on which It is based and the TV miniseries adaptation that scarred a generation of children in 1990.

Below, find the eight hidden callbacks found while watching the film for the first time (and know that given the obsessive nature of both King fans and the modern blockbuster industry, there are most likely more where these came from). It may go without saying, but, spoilers for both the movie and King’s novel follow.

Hero in a Half Shell

The real hero in It the book turns out to be a mystical turtle god, creator of all life and eternal enemy of It itself. (His name is Maturin, and he has a long and complicated role in the Stephen King multiverse.) While there may be no direct callout to the celestial terrapin in the new movie, there are at least two turtle references. The first comes when the Losers are swimming and one mentions seeing a turtle in the water; the second comes when Bill (Jaeden Lieberher) finds a turtle made of Legos in his dead younger brother’s untouched room. The creation, alas, ends up being another casualty of It; Bill drops it when he’s surprised by a manifestation of the evil spirit.

Hello, Tim Curry!

Bill Skarsgård’s dandified Pennywise is a far cry from the sinister Ronald McDonald that Tim Curry played in the original It miniseries—but if you look closely at the roomful of clowns that Richie (Finn Wolfhard) stares down while trapped in that terrifying house on Neibolt Street, you’ll notice that one of the jokers is actually styled to look just like Curry in his original clown get up. He’s on the left side of the screen, and visible in this trailer around the 2:10 mark.

Derry History 101

Weighing in at a hefty 1,163 pages, King’s novel takes plenty of detours into the strange and violent history of Derry, Maine, a place that has been plagued by unusual disasters basically since the dawn of time. Though the movie doesn’t spend much time enumerating the various catastrophes King delves into, it does make mention of several of them. Ben comes across archival newspaper stories that mention a few while doing research in the library. The kids also reference the Black Spot, a nightclub that catered to Derry’s black population and was “burned down years ago by that racist cult,” while Mike (Chosen Jacobs) makes a delivery to a butcher located next to a mural featuring a painting of the infamous Bradley Gang shoot-out. Both the Black Spot and the Bradley Gang get their own dedicated chapters in the novel version of It.

“He Thrusts His Fists Against the Posts . . .”

In the movie, Bill absently tries to recite this phrase: “he thrusts his fists against the posts, and still insists he sees the ghosts” in order to rid himself of his stutter. He never makes it all the way through, but those who have read the book know that the phrase will play a key role in his ultimate defeat of It. (Interestingly enough, the original tongue twister is something of an Easter egg itself; King lifted it from the 1942 sci-fi novel Donovan’s Brain, where the hero recites it in order to help him resist the [hypnotic power] of the titular evil.

Monster Mash

King’s It often takes the form of old Universal movie monsters the Mummy, the Wolfman, Frankenstein’s Monster, when he terrorizes the children of Derry. Because the flashback action in the movie has been shifted from the 50s to the 80s, those dated monsters were largely nixed from the film, though, during the Losers’ final battle with It, the creature does briefly attack Ben in the form of the Mummy, a throwback to its manifestations in the novel.

Love, Derry Style

Before he’s brutally slaughtered by It, wicked bully Patrick Hockstetter (Owen Teague) is confronted with a red balloon that slowly turns, revealing a message: “I Heart Derry.” That should be familiar to book readers, who will remember that the novel’s second chapter concerns the murder of a gay man named Adrian Mellon, who’s killed in an It-inspired hate crime at the annual Derry carnival—where “I Heart Derry” merch is everywhere. Mellon even dies wearing an “I Heart Derry” hat. (His brutal death was based on a real murder committed in the summer of 1984.)

Tall Paul

An aerial shot of the Derry town square in the film reveals a hideous, colorful Paul Bunyan statue, which, in the book, comes to life to terrorize Richie. Both statues are based on this actual fiberglass monstrosity, which towers over Bass Park in Bangor, Maine.

The Last Losers

Pay attention to the order in which the Losers leave their circle at the end of the movie, after swearing to return to Derry as adults should Pennywise ever resurface. The first one to depart is Stan; the next is Eddie. In the book, this is the order in which the Losers die: Stan slits his own wrists to avoid having to face It again, while Eddie is killed during their final skirmish with the creature. (That’s good news, perhaps, for Bill and Beverly (Sophia Lillis in the movie), the last two to leave.)

IT rakes in $117 million !

it-pennywiseWhile Hollywood has suffered one of the worst summers in years, the horror genre is laughing all the way to the bank. Universal kicked the year off with massive successes, including Jordan Peele’s Get Out and M. Night Shyamalan’s Split, both topping $250 million worldwide. Even David F. Sandberg’s Annabelle: Creation could topple $300m. While we’re all celebrating these successes none are as important as Warner Bros./New Line Cinema’s IT, which has shattered September records by topping $100 million during its opening weekend.

That $117 million is just in the States, with early international reports just coming in adding $62m to the total. Early Sunday morning estimates have the worldwide gross at $179 million. A $500+ million worldwide total would be some accomplishment, at this stage that looks likely and something no one was saying before last Thursday!

IT could initiate a revival in bigger budget horror…