Posts Tagged ‘alien’

Ridley Scott On Board for “Blade Runner” Follow-Up

August 18, 2011 Leave a comment

With all of the sequels, remakes and reboots getting repeatedly funded by Hollywood these days, its very easy to say that movie-making has shifted into an unprecedented realm of unoriginality. In 99% of all cases I would whole-heartedly agree. The exception would be seeing one man’s name attached to the project and that name is Ridley Scott.

It’s been widely known for some time that Scott has chosen to direct a pseudo-prequel to his original sci fi classic “Alien” entitled: “Prometheus.” Now that said film is well into production, Scott has chosen to up the ante by announcing his involvement with a continuation of the original “Blade Runner” franchise, the film that more or less turned the director into a god for science fiction fans around the world.

The new film will be directed by Ridley for Alcon Entertainment (“Insomnia,” “The Book of Eli,” “The Blind Side,”). While no plot details have been released (or possibly even exist at all, at this point), the main word being tossed around the campfire is “follow-up,” which leaves this project quite mysterious. It could be a sequel, a prequel or some other form of tie-in that we can’t even imagine. One detail that has been confirmed is the non-involvement of Harrison Ford’s character of Rick Deckard. According to the producers, the film will not be a continuation of the original character’s story.

Some might argue Scott’s decision to mess around with his own work, which has since become a classic on many different levels. However, for me, there are several filmmakers with whom I have no problem placing my complete trust in. Sir Ridley is definitely one of them. Despite his obvious flops, his successes have made him one of the true film visionaries of the last half century. With him behind the controls, I fervently anticipate every step of this production and look forward to it’s completion, which according to sources, may not be for at least three years. Stay tuned for more info.

In the meantime, enjoy one of the greatest openings in film history:

NEW “Super 8” Trailer

March 12, 2011 Leave a comment

I know I’m a couple of days behind the curve on posting this, but better late than never. J.J. Abrams’ new film “Super 8” has got to be one of the most highly anticipated and secretive projects of the year. This new trailer has given the greatest amount of information and clues into the film’s plot, characters and events.

J.J. Abrams has always been kind of a question mark for me. I’ve always thought that “Mission Impossible III” was a ridiculous piece of garbage. “Lost” was a great show, but I’m not sure how much credit I actually want to give Abrams, himself, for it. “Star Trek” was definitely an exciting and satisfying piece of cinema, so that has definitely improved his image, in my mind. However, I can remember all of the talk referring to this young hotshot as the next Steven Spielberg, and I’m not sure anything could convince me of that.

Until now. Not gonna lie, this movie has me stoked. If Abrams can successfully pull off this venture, than he will in no doubt be placed in the cream of the crop of young directors working to change the face of cinema for the better. With the threads of nostalgia that I’ve felt sewn into all of the spectacular action and suspense, I wouldn’t doubt it if this film becomes the “Inception” of the year, and ending up with a Best Picture nomination from the Oscars come January.

But we’re getting ahead of ourselves. With this trailer, the film has a LOT to live up to. We shall find out if it, and Abrams, are all they’re cracked up to be come July. In the meantime, watch the trailer, below. There are no HD versions available on Youtube, yet. Therefore, if you’re hungry for higher resolution, click the Twitter link below the embed.

One more note: how cool is it to see Spielberg producing under the Amblin Entertainment logo, again? This trailer is the mayor of nostalgia city.


HD Version from Twitter

NEW – Battle: Lost Angeles Trailer

January 17, 2011 Leave a comment

When will this movie’s publicity campaign stop impressing me? I really want to know. While this trailer is not quite as mysterious and fatefully originally crafted as the teaser. However, it still has my attention absolutely stoked. Several more elements have been introduced here that certainly bring a little more to the table. The visual effects still look incredible and the tension and mood still seem legit. With a little luck, this could be an darker version of “Independence Day” for a new generation.

All in all, I can imagine anything except being completely disappointed. And yet, for now, I am going to enjoy this.

Check out the new trailer below:

“Robin Hood” Review

November 18, 2010 Leave a comment

I’ve been a long time devoted fan of Ridley Scott, and after viewing one of his most recent films “American Gangster,” I thought that he was up among the likes of Martin Scorsese as being one of the best depicters of violence, its causes and consequences, in American cinema, maybe the best, as well as just being an all-around cinematic visionary. After viewing his latest, the adaptation of the old Robin Hood fantasy, it’s my humble opinion that he needs to reevaluate his craft.

Everyone knows the story of “Robin Hood,” even if the gist of many people’s knowledge comes from a fox in a green outfit or God forbid, Kevin Costner. A freedom fighter who resided in the woods with his merry men that steals from the richer classes of a brutal medieval king and redistributes among the poor. This telling of the famous character is actually more of a prequel, showing how the hero began his escapades. Sad to say, the backstory is just not as interesting as the tale, itself.

Russell Crowe plays the title character, obviously, and tries his absolute damnedest not make it appear that he’s playing General Maximus all over again, though has a tough time succeeding. I’ll tell you that if Crowe’s character in this had a fraction of the amount of depth or inner angst as that which he portrayed in “Gladiator” (and won an Oscar for), his performance might have blossomed more. The other roles, however, are filled quite well. Scott Grimes and William Hurt shine as Will Scarlet and Marshall Bell. Kevin Durand, who almost always finds himself in the part of a villain or proverbial asshole, plays the Little John sidekick role perfectly. I would have preferred someone more attractive to play Maid Marion, but Cate Blanchett still pulls her weight in the acting department. Eileen Atkins and Mark Strong are both fantastic. Yet, while Danny Huston is superb in the role of King Richard, someone with a bit more experience and clout could have been better cast as Prince John over Oscar Isaac.

The script isn’t a terrible thing. The story is a valiant effort with a decently concocted structure. The characters, however, are really quite shallow in their quality and value. They seem to exist merely for the sake of the role they play in the story, rather than thrive in their own right. Those backstories and motives that are actually touched on are done so briefly and vaguely. Little John, Friar Tuck and Eleanor of Aquitane are all stupendous character concepts, and yet in the film, their bones are bare of much substantial story meat. This is all very disappointing for a scribe like Brian Helgeland who has produced some of the most layered and complex characters in film history in previous efforts like “Mystic River” and the incomparable “L.A. Confidential.” The story also suffers from a climax that is utterly anticlimactic and unsatisfying.

Scott has most of his usual stylists on line for this production, including cinematographer John Mathieson and editor Pietro Scalia. Sadly, Oscar-winning costume designer Janty Yates, whose stunning work is evident in “Gladiator,” “Kingdom of Heaven” and “American Gangster,” is absent, and that absense is evident. Overall, much of the production value that I would expect of a Scott film is surprisingly not up to par. I miss the creative angles and gritty texture of the camerawork and the rapid fire cuts turned into rhythmically golden editing. I wanted a thunderstorm of a visual experience and got calm seas instead.

Not to be too much of a pragmatist, because this issue shouldn’t bare that much weight in the grand scheme, but the film is really lacking with a PG-13 rating. These are medieval times, when weapons were anatomically destructive enough to make a grown man cringe. When people would behead each other practically for sport. Ridley Scott simply does not perform as well when constrained, but rather superb when he is turned loose. The violent nature of Scott’s mind should be allowed to roam free and let the blood flow and thus would the story, the style and the viewer’s satisfaction.

Overall, Robin Hood is a disappointment. It’s not a bad movie by any means, but simply an average one. Scott, it appears, just didn’t take it seriously enough to really add his signature touch. It lacks the sense of grim tonality in both artistic texture and value of story. Instead, it feels like live action Disney adaptation, unwilling to delve into the more stark and foreboding aspects that could have been brought out of such a story. Hopefully Ridley will regain his touch for the upcoming “Alien” prequels or we may begin to miss his unique contributions to the world of cinema.

GRADES:           C+           * * 1/2 / * * * * *           5.4 / 10.0


“Battle: Los Angeles” Trailer

November 14, 2010 Leave a comment

Even though I don’t hold “District 9” up to be the masterpiece that so many think it is, there is one thing that I really have to thank it for. It has created such a new resurgence in alien movies. There’s “Skyline” (which I actually won’t be thanking anyone for) as well as “Monsters,” which I will finally be screening next weekend. Now, Columbia Pictures has finally released the trailer for the much anticipated “Battle: Los Angeles.”

Now, I’m aware that this is one of the most horribly pedestrian titles that they could have possibly chosen, and I have no real dreams of high art coming out of this. However, the kid inside me is just hopping mad with excitement. This film looks old school; a hardcore, all-out war between the human military and a horde of feisty aliens, while throwing in some nice elements of realistic, subjective filmmaking. That is a smorgasbord of greatness for this particular moviegoer.

On top of all that, this is a very well-cut trailer. The intro is fantastic. That song is absolutely haunting. The pacing is perfect. The mood is disturbing, emotional and exciting as hell. Hopefully the feature can live up to the stakes this trailer has set.

You can watch it on youtube below:


OR take a few minutes and download the HD Quicktime from Apple trailers (it’s better).



My Top Ten Movie Monsters

October 28, 2010 1 comment

Everyone knows that I do love my lists. Therefore, along with the usual reviews and banter that I post, I will also be featuring the occasional list, either of an individual facet of films, the best work by a filmmaker, the best performances, films by genre, or whatever else I think up. It should be a pretty good time.

So I thought hard about what my first of these additions would be, and I figured it fitting that with the upcoming release of Gareth Edwards’ extremely low-budget flick, the aptly titled “Monsters,” I shall make a list of the greatest monsters that I’ve ever seen displayed on the big screen. Obviously, as with any list that I might compose, I have not seen all of the potential candidates for ranking. Yet, hopefully, I will be able to put together a competent showing.

Some guidelines for this list. Animals, unless outrageously oversized, are not counted as monsters by me. I can’t stand it when people refer to the birds in Alfred Hitchcock’s “The Birds” or the shark in Steven Spielberg’s “Jaws” as monsters. It’s just the reality that those creatures are not monsters, but rather normal animals, that add to the terror that those films present. Also, there shall be no metaphorical monsters. Neither global warming rearing its head in “An Inconvenient Truth” or the evil, psychotic forces driving Anton Chigurh in “No Country for Old Men” will make the cut.

Also, no vampires, no ghosts and no zombies. Mostly because I consider them to still be human, living or dead, and portraying humans as monsters kind of negates the point.

Before we get to the finalists, here are the five runners-up after the jump:


Read more…