March 31, 2011

The Hangover II Trailer

What can I say, there is no way I'm missing this movie on opening weekend.

March 30, 2011

Arnold Goes Meta The Governator (Now With Trailer)!

He always said that' he'd be back, and now he kind of is. This week's Entertainment Weekly has the scoop about Arnold's future. One of the first things revealed is Arnold's new animated series and comic called "The Governator." Supervised and produced by Stan Lee, the series will focus on Arnold post government career as a crime fighter with different power suits who battles G.I.R.L.I.E men. In case you wanted to know GIRLIE men stands for: Gangsters Imposters Racketeers Liars & Irredeemable Ex-cons. No word yet if feminists are pissed.

There is more on the series over at Entertainment Weekly, but the big news here is actually pretty interesting. Arnold is essentially going meta. The Governator persona is him, his family is in the comics and the show, the fact that he used to be Governor is a major plot point. Arnold is now playing himself on creative steroids which is crazy because he made a name for himself by using physical steroids!

Stay tuned tomorrow as I break down potential cameos in this new Arnold Universe!

March 29, 2011

Super Hero Fix: Superman, Green Lantern, Dark Knight Rises

Alright comic book movie fans, buckle up I'm about to hit you with so much information you're gonna think I'm a villain. In a span of four days there has been quantum super-nova of information both from Marvel and DC so let's throw on the costumes and kick ass.

The Dark Knight Rises: People are so excited for this film that Nolan has instituted a Bruce Wayne level security system. To read the script, each person needs to be greeted and brought through multiple locked doors, then into the Batcave, I mean, production office. Speaking of the script, it has been printed with no ending, only God, I mean Nolan knows the ending (source).

The Dark Knight Rises After He Has Already Risen: It was announced today by the head of Warner Brothers after Nolan and Bale's run with the caped crusader ends with "The Dark Knight Rises," Nolan will continue to produce the franchise. I'll go on record and say I'd rather have a new director/producer come in and put his vision on the screen. With Nolan producing, that means his vision will probably remain intact  (source)

Justice League: While I'm always been more of an Avengers (2012 son!) fan, there are many people who are fans of the DC super hero Globetrotters.  If you don't know what the Justice League is, check out the photo above. Anyway, there is going to be a Justice League movie in 2013. (source)

Green Lantern: Trailers for "Thor," "X-Men-First Class," and "Captain America" are burning up the internets and theaters but little has been heard about my Dad's favorite super-hero - "Green Lantern." The reason? The special effects in the film, particularly the 3D ones are taking longer to process and delaying the release of the new trailer and the start of the marketing campaign. Don't worry lanterns, you'll be out of the darkest day soon (Source)

Superman: Say what you will about a Brit being cast as Superman, but the supporting cast being put together for this film is looking good. Kevin Costner & Diane Lane play Superman's earthly parents, Michael Shannon is rumored  for the villain, and now Amy Adams is confirmed for Lois Lane. Whether she is singing to birds in "Enchanted" or laying down a Lowell smack down in"The Fighter," I think she's a great fit for the part.

I could hit you with some Marvel news, but I'll wait until something really juicy comes up, in the mean time keep your eyes peeled for the TPG signal in the sky. First person gets a ticket for the TPG500 in the TPG racing league!

March 28, 2011

Super Intense 3D Films? Human Flight? Yes Please

If you get nauseous during the Bourne films you probably should stop reading now. You know the type, things get crazy, the camera doesn't stop moving, people refer to it as "shaky cam." Well, according to the excellent Thompson on Hollywood Blog (phot via them as well) we will soon be getting human flight in 3D.

A partially fictional story, the film focuses on the daredevils who pursue the ultimate anti-Icarus dream: true human flight. The cameras were developing especially for the film, why did they need to be developed, cause they're gonna be moving at 150mph as they plummet to the earth......brahhhhhhh!

While I'm excited for this film, I'm more excited about the potential for the camera in the future. Perhaps this can be used for any future skydiving action flicks. Yes I'm talking about you hypothetical Point Break and Terminal Velocity remakes/reboots/sequels. After all if camera technology allows James Cameron to shoot at the bottom of the ocean, then we gotta have cameras to fall though the clouds....brah!

March 25, 2011

13 Assassins Trailer

I don't usually go for Takashi Miike films, usually they're a little too torture heavy, but this one looks pretty badass

March 24, 2011

STREAM ON: Badass Frenchman? Check out "Mesrine Killer Instinct"

The words badass and French don't usually go together, but Jacques Mesrine is the exception. A real life career criminal, he is portrayed expertly by Vincent Cassel in last year's shotgun blast of a film "Mesrine: Killer Instinct." The first of a two part series, the film is available on Netflix streaming now and if you like hyper cool, violent, criminal movies, this is your jam right heyah. Simply put it's the film that "Public Enemies" should have been.

American audiences might know Cassel as the dance instructor from "Black Swan." Feel my touch...respond to it! Yeah that dude. But "that dude" is a terrible way to describe Cassel, who proves here that he is an accomplished actor of the highest caliber. In one scene he is a soldier faced with an impossible situation, in another he's romancing chicas in Spain, and then he's a cold hearted killer in the next. Cassel brings so much authenticity to the role your feelings toward the character are constantly changing from rooting for him to despising him.

Directed by Jean Francois Richet, the film looks and feels as explosive as it's story. Colors pop off the screen and the camera work is fluid and energetic. Richet directed the remake of "Assault of Precinct 13," and while that film wasn't incredible, it cannot be denied that he has a strong grip on action filmmaking. A prison breakout scene in the later half of the film is particularly thrilling and serves as a model for how to physically stage an action scene.

I mean you know your boy TPG loves his action movies, but the film boasts some serious French actors doing work. As I said, Cassel is l'argent, aka money in French, but other French actors here including Gerard Depardieu and "Hereafter" star Cecile De France contribute with powerful performances.

The film is on Netflix streaming instant and the sequel "Public Enemy No.1" is available on Tuesday. If you like foreign films, particularly ones with lots of action and hyper cool gangsters, this is one badass, pardon me, French badass you should check out.

March 23, 2011

Captain America Trailer Drops

USA USA USA USA USA USA! This looks badass and I'm totally signed up!

THE FP Trailer

I have no idea why I was fascinated by this trailer. Seriously just what is it about end of days video game break dancing that makes me keep watching this shit?

March 22, 2011

Can Kiefer Save Me From 24 Withdrawal?

It's Tuesday March 22nd 2011 and something is missing. Just one year ago I was writing this post about my favorite TV show: the Jack Bauer Power Hour aka 24. For two years I did episode recaps and they were the wand in my magical life, here's a sample from one year ago:

2. Bad guys in 24 love a couple things: facial hair, accents, and hanging out at docks. Honestly CTU should just monitor the docks at all the major cities. Oh what's that, a whole bunch of evil looking people driving in shady vans at 3AM by a dock, wonder if they're setting up a lemonade stand or trying to kill us.
12. Jack Bauer is so damn soft these days, look I know times are different and mass killing and torture isn't the rage, but please don't make Jack all emotional in combat. Dude has killed over 300 people and now he's getting all sentimental over some SWAT team rookie who didn't follow orders.
15. I'm so sad that Hasting didn't have a good answer to the "Where do you find these people" question because that would explain a long history of terrible CTU Human Resource decisions.

Got dayum, I miss 24 seriously. No other show on TV can match it's intense yet still fun attitude. I'm watching "Breaking Bad" now and it's excellent, it's just so bleak man, whoah, cancer patients cooking meth crippling domestic drama ripping apart souls. Whatever happened to go here, fight terrorists, clock beeps, yell at Chloe, go there, bite off terrorist heads with patriotic teeth of freedom, commercial break, introduce new bad guy... It's hard out there now, Jack! Jack! You gotta help me.

Luckily Kiefer feels my pain. Just yesterday he was on "The View" (whaaaat?) and announced the "24 Movie" will be out in 2012. A couple of months ago I told you how Tony Scott was the front-runner to direct, and it looks like his name is still being mentioned, which is a semi-strong indicator there is life in the movie. And to really prove that Kiefer cares about the people in 24 withdrawal he's on twitter now. And even though he seems to tweet a lot of about what he's cooking, I have no doubt he's cooking up freedom and justice the American way.

March 18, 2011

Life The Movie: Tyra Banks Living in a Harvard Dorm

Out of all the places a person could live, no one location got better press last year than the Harvard dorms. Through the lens of "The Social Network," they came across as an ideal breeding ground for billionaires, friendships, and ornate mahogany woodwork. Beers flowed freely, equations written on windows, and human civilization changing forever Now, those dorms just got a dose human anatomy! According to this report, Tyra Banks is currently attending Harvard business school and living in the residence halls! Baaaaayum! In the words of my fellow internet personality Jay Judah---That's hot fire!

Just imagine some business nerds, fresh off winning the DECA High School championship settling into their new dorm at Harvard. They go to introduce themselves to their dorm neighbors, they're expecting a geek, but they get T Banks. Dayum! Heyah we go! Chaos in the dorms. Financial models in upheaval. Super power violent bad mama jama ultra babe next door. It's going to be a wild semester!

The fact that a Sports Illustrated model is living in the Harvard dorms is highly comedic to me. The situation above has to happen in some capacity, right? It's life as zany college comedy. Then again, isn't all life in college a comedy? Go ask DJ Stalemate if you don't know what I'm talking about.

March 17, 2011

Jennifer Lawrence is Katniss in The Hunger Games!

Today it was announced that Jennifer Lawrence, star and oscar nominated actress from "Winter's Bone" will play Katniss in "The Hunger Games." Based off the popular book series which I covered when back before Hollywood starting gassing them up, the film is slated to come out (with everything else) in 2012. After seeing the toughness and general badassery that Lawrence displayed in "Winter's Bone," I gotta say I'm pretty thrilled about this choice.

I'm still intrigued to see how they manage to make a PG-13 out of this bloodbath of a story. After all, their are many kids getting shot, exploded, and stabbed with spears, not exactly PG-13 stuff. One detail that I do think Ms. Lawrence will really bring to the table is the transformation of Katniss from rough and tumble scrapper fighter girl to international sensation. A cool part of the story is the balance between the regal capital and the games, and if you see Lawrence at the Oscars, then dayum can she be regal
Catching Fire Indeed!

March 16, 2011

A Brief History of Title Design

Excellent video here set to RJD2's legendary "Ghostwriter." Big up to thislalife reader and legendary librarian T-Maz for the tip

North Korea Is The New China (At Least In Terms of Bad Guys)

Back when I started in this blog game, one of my first posts was how much I loved John Milius's epic film "Red Dawn." The 1984 film told the extremely paranoid cold war story of the communist invasion of the United States and the young rebel fighters (including Charlie Sheen) who kick ass to defend America! When the remake was announced back in 2008, the new invaders were the then popular (in a we are scared of them way) Chinese. The film was shot, MGM's money situation got "complicated" and all we heard from the film was this casting photo. Now the film is back in the news in a big way. Why you ask? Because China isn't the villain anymore, North Korea is.

The LA TIMES broke the news that due to "financial pressures" the villains in the story would be changing, keep in mind the film has already been shot. Set photos like the one featured on the right feature Chinese logos so those will be digitally replaced. Some scenes will have to be re-shot and other's will be just be re-edited. Sounds like a lot of work just to not offend our Chinese buddies.

But it's more than diplomacy here, it's about that scrilla aka that yuan and dollas. According to the article, having the villains be Chinese would cut out a major market for the film and international distributors want no part in that. China is the fifth biggest market outside of the US for movies so having them not want any part of your film is bad for business. Regardless of what you think about the film, you cannot deny that this is fascinating peak into the world of global movie politics! The article also points out the video game "Homefront" (also written by Milius) recently changed it's villains as well. And while the world awaits word how North Korea feels about becoming the villain one must think, Damn, China really has some reach!

March 15, 2011

Cred Confessions: Dirty Harry

Is there anyone on earth cooler than Clint Eastwood? After watching "Dirty Harry" for the first time yesterday, I seriously doubt that anyone can hang with this dude, and I when I say anyone, I mean anybody in the past, present, or future. Often times the film is remembered for Eastwood's legendary performance, but I found the film appealing for other reasons as well. Think of it this way, if "Dirty Harry" was a loaded .44 magnum, half of those 6 rounds would be full of Eastwood, the others, they would be full of the other geniuses involved with the film.

Who are these geniuses? Let's start with the script, initially written by Harry Julian & Rita M Fink, and revised by John Milius and Terrence Malick, the story succeeds by keeping things simple. There's a good guy and a bad guy. The good guy is extremely good, casually saving the day on his lunch break, stopping dude's from jumping off buildings, and dominating perps, you know the drill. The bad guy is well, just really evil. He kills civilians, punches kids, and gets his face pounded for fun/cunning motives. You know there's gotta be a showdown and man, that showdown is badass!

Besides Eastwood I was struck by how "cool" the film is. The score from Argentinian Lalo Schifirin is full of 70's funk, jazz, and Latin music and enhances the mood of the film. Director Don Siegel and cinematographer Bruce Surtees take some serious risks with the film, including some really interesting shots that position the hero as tiny in the scope of the San Francisco landscape. These two elements combined give the film a certain artistic vibe that I wasn't expecting. I mean, let's be honest here, I was expecting Eastwood kicking ass and I got it, I just didn't see the groovy stuff coming brah.

Earlier in that last paragraph I talked about how risky the film was. This is a film that came out forty years ago and still feels bold. It made me wonder if Hollywood has lost some of it's risk taking mentality. If "Dirty Harry" came out today it probably would be ultra-violent and star Jason Statham. It probably would have a lot of metal on the soundtrack and would open to 15 million dollars. Hopefully one day, we'll take more risks and see more movies like "Dirty Harry" today. Now, who's feeling lucky and wants to step up?

March 14, 2011

Battle: Los Angeles Brings Alien War To My Door

"Battle: Los Angeles" delivers the goods. Now it's important to establish that if you were expecting a movie about anything besides a battle of marines vs aliens in a destroyed Los Angeles, you will be disappointed. The little character development that takes place in this film is strained at best. We identify characters not by name, but by type. This marine has a pregnant wife, this one doubts his leadership, this one is Two Face, this one has glasses, this one is Tom Brady's Baby Mama, this one was on True get the picture. Simply put the film is one long epic firefight between us....and THEM!

Let me get into two things about this film from the get go. The first is that this movie really suffers whenever anybody is talking and not fighting. Some basic military dialogue that's part of the fighting (go over there and kill that thing!) is tolerable, but everything else....yikes. Second this is very much a video game film. The structure of the film with characters getting stronger (leveling up), getting in different vehicles, exploring new environments, facing bosses, is all straight up video game status. This video game similarity isn't a knock on the film, in fact the producers boasted of it at Comic con.

But if you're gonna make the film like a video game and boast about it, you gotta go all in! Where was the "big bad" guy that Eckhart would have to face off against in final (Mortal?) combat? Where were the weapon upgrades? The sniper spree montage? Ask my boy moto, you gotta have the sniper spree! These elements were missing and damaged the film. In general though, if you're going to see a movie called "Battle: Los Angeles" you're expecting in the words of my wise uncle Ted "marines fighting aliens with a excellent special effects!" And that's pretty much all you got.

**Stay tuned on Wednesday for a deeper analysis of the film.

March 9, 2011

A Brief Word On This Madness Around The Mountains Of Madness

Graphic via /playlist blog

There was once a time in Hollywood when the biggest news were what movies were being made. Yesterday was not that time, the biggest buzzed issue was that Guillermo del Toro long planned, much hyped adaptation of H.P. Lovecraft's "At the Mountains of Madness" did not get the green light from Universal. The film had Tom Cruise attached to star and James Cameron producing, but it still was not enough. Del Toro is now directing "Pacific Rim" for Legendary Pictures, which is also about madness and monsters, no word if the mountains show up.

To hear the internet tell it, this is the worst thing that has happened in the history of movies. Universal is "chickenshit" for not making proclaims Aint it Cool. Fanboys, listen to me, relax seriously. Yeah I've read the novella and the script and they're cool. But as much as Lovecraftian neo-hippies think that this will be the greatest thing ever, I completely understand why a struggling movie studio doesn't want to invest in a 150 million dollar project about shape shifting aliens who experiment on gigantic penguins (yes, that is part of the actual story).

Del Toro is an interesting director, but I don't personally believe him to be director wunderkind many praise him to be.Sure he has interesting monsters in his films, but monsters don't make the man. And for all the people that hate the Hollywood machine, keep in mind that the Del Toro isn't the creative mastermind they think. To date he's made two comic book sequels (Hellboy II & Blade), one comic book movie (Hellboy), one movie based off a book (Mimic) and two original films that are heavily indebted to the spanish filmakers before him (The Devil's Backbone & Pan's Labyrinth). Simply put, he's good, but not the greatest. I'd take Nolan, Blomkamp, or Tarantino over him any day.

March 7, 2011

A Brief Update About Iron Man 3

In the world of geeks, nerds, and dweebs, it is now considered cool to rip on "Iron Man 2." In fact, it's generally considered cool to rip on that one that come out before the new one comes out. Translation: if you're making part 3, be like Michael Bay and go in the press and say part 2 was crap. If you're making part 2, take the internet and say "this one is gonna make the first look like a game!" And now with Iron Man 3 wayyyyy on the horizon, writer/director Shane Black is doing just that.

Lemme break it down now with some recent Hollywood history. Once upon a time there was a movie star named Robert Downey Jr. who had a problem with drugs. People didn't want to work with him, but he was ready to make a comeback. So he got together with Shane Black, an accomplished screenwriter (he wrote Lethal Weapon) and actor (he was in Predator!) and made a film called "Kiss Kiss Bang Bang." The film is a zany murder mystery taking place in LA and is a whole lot of fun. Simply put, Downey and Black were back.

And now with Black set to direct Downey again in "Iron Man 3," which doesn't come out until 2013, the machine is slowly coming to life with some details. According to Aint It Cool News Black has said he's about to start writing and his aim is to tell a "Tom Clancy thriller" with real-world villains. I've always thought the greatest part in any Iron Man film was when he rolled into Afghanistan and destroyed those terrorist dudes, which is here below with the worst soundtrack ever

I'm intrigued to see "Iron Man" in a Tom Clancy thriller. All those old school Jack Ryan films, yeah you know "Clear & Present Danger," "The Hunt for Red October," and "Patriot Games" are pretty damn badass so Iron Man in that world could be fresh. Honestly though, the film is still a long ways off, and in the mean time we got the Avengers to get pumped for, so keep this one on the backburner for now.

March 3, 2011

Red Skull in Captain America Looks Great (But where is the trailer)

Entertainment Weekly just dropped the first full look at nerd deity Hugo Weaving as the nefarious Red Skull in this summer's "Captain America." I have to say, this looks pretty damn scary, which makes it pretty damn fantastic. The nose really seals the deal for me. But yeah, it looks incredible, but seriously Marvel, where is our full length trailer? This movie is coming in in July and we only seen a brief super bowl spot. Come on Marvel!

March 2, 2011

Find Makarov Short Film Answers the Call of Duty

This fan made short film, which takes key moments and sets from the ultra-popular "Call of Duty:Modern Warfare" franchise, just dropped online and for having no official connection to Activision it's pretty impressive. Between this and the Microsoft sanctioned Halo shorts, I hope that this starts a video game short film renaissance. 

March 1, 2011

Life The Movie: Charlie Sheen

In the hit television show, Charlie Sheen plays wild party boy named "Charlie" who learns about life, love, and family when his brother and his young son move into his malibu party mansion. Let me remind you that is the plot of Charlie's TV show, not his real life saga. "Real Life" for Charlie Sheen that seems to be a subjective word. Over the past couple of weeks he has become an unhinged celebrity controversy deity, simply put he is everywhere.

As I've said before, in one of my favorite books Life The Movie: How Entertainment Conquered Reality, author Neal Gabler argues that the real life celebrity is bigger than the fictional character.  Sheen exemplifying this idea to the max, and I have a hunch that he is vaguely aware of it. He has painted himself as the hero, Chuck Lorre as bad guy, and CBS as the evil "syndicate" that is oppressing him. He even uses fantasy language, calling himself everything from a fighter jet to a warlock.

While bizarre celebrity outbursts are not anything new, I feel like the Sheen outbursts are fresh, because unlike, say Mel Gibson, they're mainly outlandish, hilarious, and pretty much not-offensive. And when I say hilarious, seriously, check out some of the highlights. (Now with real time quotes

The tragic thing here is that Sheen, whether he is on drugs or not, is definitely is not well. Something is going on and our celebrity driven culture is fascinated by him because we're expecting something bad to happen. We have a front row seat to a high speed train heading for the bridge, and the bridge might not hold. We can't look away. I hope that Charlie figures out what is going on and gets "better," but I'm not really sure what that means for him. Perhaps it just means pulling him out of his personal "narrative" and bringing him back to reality.