He now runs California…

20 October, 2009

Yes, I have completely stolen this from Empire, but sometimes the world needs to see something incredible.

Ten points go to whoever can tell me what the hell is so funny

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ATTENTION WORLD – There is an Expendables trailer.

15 October, 2009

In the past I may have sounded over-excited about the impending release of The Expendables next year. But now the evidence is here, in three-minutes of pure, ball kicking glory. And it’s awesome.

There is always a place in my heart for mindless, shallow, thrill-seeking action films and from the looks of it The Expendables ticks all the boxes.

Make no mistake, there is more testosterone here than gym full of rhinos. But I think we should all take a gleeful delight in the fact that the majority of this trailer involves watching things get blown up, shot at, or beaten up.

The trailer first emerged last night at the movie blog and shows Stallone et al getting stuck in to a hefty glimpse of the final film. The banter between the cast looks good (Statham’s ‘I’m getting a text’ line and Jet Li’s small man complex stand-out here, as well as his ‘I would have winned’ line) and harks back to the glory days of muscle bound action one-liners that made the original 80s action films so amazing.

There’s a few interesting plot teases as well, why are Jet Li and Dolph Lundgren fighting at the end? Aren’t they both on the same side? Mickey Rourke looks ace as the group’s leader. The Stath and Li look great in the high kicking roles. Also interesting is Danny Trejo, conspicuous here by his absence, who many assumed would be the bad guy head honcho – we can just hope that the world’s baddest Mexican will be getting all the screen time he deserves.

Colour me excited.

Stallone’s new Death Wish

1 October, 2009

Hollywood iron man Sylvester Stallone is all over the place at the moment. If he’s not drawing together the world’s most amazing cast of arse-kicking hard-as-nails I-drink-beer-while-I’m-smashing-things-to-pieces action stars for upcoming super-actioner The Expendables, or working out how to be the meanest looking 63-year-old on the planet in the next Rambo film, he’s deciding whether or not remake 1974 Charles Bronson classic, Death Wish.

The Italian Stallion has been speaking to Empire about how he hopes to put together a remake of the brutal exploitation flick, but at least he seems fairly grounded about the whole idea and is fully aware of just how much he could mess up, and just how much Charles Bronson would come back from the dead just to kick his arse if he did.

“It’s a classic morality tale, where you take a civilised man and take away everything that matters to him so he becomes primitive again,” he said, speaking in the interview.  “The story’s been done many times, and when it’s done well, it’s an emotionally engaging film. The trouble with remakes is that people fall in love with the original. It’s like peanut butter. If you try to change the taste of peanut butter, you’re in trouble.”

The more I hear from the Slyster these days the more I like him. At least he’s fully aware of how carefully he would have to tread about such a loved piece of cinema. Not only does he blatently know what he’s good at and what people want from him (ie smashing people’s heads in and killing generic South Americans with a machine gun the size of a cow) – but he does it exceptionally well. And how could you not love a man who can make peanut butter analogies and bring together Bruce Willis, Mickey Rourke, Jason Statham, Jet Li, Dolph Lundgren, Steve Austin, Sly himself and Arnold Schwarzenegger for at least an hour and a half of gun fights and explosions?

But I digress, here is a chance to see Bronson in all of his Death Wish, no-nonsense ass-kickery. If there’s a better way to get a seat on the subway I don’t know about it.

A new depth to Hollywood…

1 September, 2009

James Cameron’s hype machine has been whirring frenetically for what seems like several decades in anticipation of his upcoming film Avatar, which – according to Cameron at least – will revolutionise cinema and the way we watch films.

For those not in the know, Avatar is Cameron’s come-back superhit (his first feature film since 1997’s record destroying Titanic) and is set to change all of our lives forever on its release this Christmas.

The trick here is the new 3d cameras Cameron has spent the past decade developing, promising an unparallelled depth of field and a type of 3D which is not possible using current techniques.

Unfortunately for Cameron decades of developments and around 12 months worth of clever marketing may have worked on Hollywood’s production gurus  – with production firms including Disney and Pixar, as well as directors like Guillermo Del Toro pledging their allegiance to his new system – but the fans seem yet to be convinced.

After the release of the first official teaser trailer for the film – which came initially at the cringingly titled ‘Avatar Day’ where selected cinemas around the world screened 15 minutes of 3D tit-bits for the film – floodgates opened, and the torrent of hate for Cameron’s latest began – with many claiming the promised 3D revolution was nothing more than a mediocre, video-game like cut-scene.

The problem Cameron now faces is to find a way to win back his fickle fans. And with the internet churning out more and more hate propaganda like this by the day, it’s hard to see how that will turn around.

Luckily for Cameron his ‘future of cinema’ idea which was such a hit with panicky studio bosses also happens to be a rather superb business model. Despite the resentment of fans, Cameron has the luxury of insisting he is right, and that his new 3D system, unlike the one currently being utilised by an increasingly large number of new releases, is as breathtaking as he claims. The problem here for the haters is that, for the time being at least, no one can prove him wrong. Slating Avatar for it’s video-game like look on a computer screen is easy, and can be just as easily defended by claiming the true image is only revealed in the cinema.

I’m also certain that the only victor of this stand-off will be curiosity. Fans who berate the trailer will be the first in line come the film’s release, just to be certain that they were right. And anyone who wants to decide for themselves will have  to fork out at the big screen.

And here we come back to those panicky studio bosses. The Hollywood big cheeses have been fighting a losing battle against piracy for years now. And with films now commonly leaking out and spreading almost instantly through internet in higher and higher quality before they even hit the cinemas, the studios are running out of options to stamp the problem out. Cameron’s vision of the future is, therefore, particularly appetising to the powerful people – his revolutionary technique is one which can only be leaked in an inferior quality, and one which punters will have to fork out for to see properly.

The money recouped from salvaging hollywood’s nose-diving box office receipts would more than outweigh the cost of Cameron’s Avatar (rumoured to have smashed its $200m budget way back) flopping. So a 3D film future is more appealing than ever to those who hold the purse strings tightly, making Avatar’s popular and critical success all but irrelevant to the impact of Cameron’s jazzy technology.

So no wonder Cameron is confident, the future of cinema looks all but decided already.

But enough with these nonsense conspiracy theories, it might be alright. Take a look and tell me what you think…

Trailer Treats!

14 July, 2009

There has been a string of particularly good looking trailers since my last post, spilling over the internet like shiny goodies, showering down from a  beautiful celluloid pinata.  I would like to think of myself as the agitated, dangerous, bat wielding 10-year-old in this blossoming metaphor, and so – itching to share these e-number riddled, cinematic treats with you all – let the swinging begin…

Shutter Island

I wasn’t sure about Martin Scorsese wandering down the eerie road of horror, but trailer for his upcoming psycho-thriller has dispelled most all of the doubts in my mind. If it was ever going to work it would have to incorporate the taught, tense atmosphere the eye-browed one built in the superbly paced The Departed (although it still angers me to see the lack of recognition for the incredible Infernal Affairs on which the film was based/ripped off). Scorsese has clearly found his kindred spirit in Di Caprio, who looks to be putting in another fine performance after an overly long dry spell, while Ben Kingsley does the honours on creepy Brit duty.

Giallo

Sticking to the horror vibe, Italian horror aficionado Dario Argento will be making his return to the genre that made him when Giallo gets its release later this year. The film follows Adrien Brody as a detective prowling the streets of milan for an unknown killer, picking of models one by one. This may sound very same old, same old but Argento is THE man to turn to for innovative horror cinema. Tenebrae is still, in my opinion, one of the greatest horror films ever to be made and with any luck this old hand will be back to the tricks we all know and love when Giallo hits the big screens.

Dead Snow

Dead Snow was a huge hit when it arrived at Sundance earlier this year. This sophisticated documentary focuses on a group of Norwegian holidaymakers who encounter an army of undead Nazi zombies in the wilderness and are forced to fight for their survival. Quite what more you would need to know to be sold on this is beyond me.

District 9

This Peter Jackson produced sci-fi is out to grab attention. Ok the effects aren’t amazing, and the handicam filmography has been done to death a hundred times now, but put aside the budget constraints clamped on this South African offering and there’s the promise for a very interesting, innovative looking story behind it all. Say what you want about Peter Jackson, but he’s an ambitious director who goes 100 per cent into all of his projects, and I highly doubt he would have tagged his name onto this without it showing signs of something special.

Flame and Citron

Flame and Citron has slipped in under the radar this year and has all the makings of becoming the most acclaimed foreign language film of 2009. The film follows two infamous resistance leaders in this relentless espionage thriller set in nazi Germany. Based on true events, the film stars Casino Royale’s Mads  Mikkelsen and has been written and directed by Ole Christian Madsen with ‘Award Winner’ written all over it.

Inglourious Basterds

After the first trailer emerged for Quentin Tarantino’s latest snippet of madness I was utterly opposed to the idea of a Dirty Dozen style, star-driven, ultra-violent WW2 adventure, but this second trailer has reinstated a little of the hope I always hold for a Tarantino film. Although the outspoken one may well be on his last chance to shine after a slurry of abysmally disappointing films.

The Informant!

Following on from the hugely popular, if much maligned, Ocean’s 11 trilogy, and his ambitious two part Che Guevara biopic, Che, Steven Soderbergh returns to top form with the utterly brilliant looking The Informant! Not only is it exciting because it has an exclamation in the title, but it also has Matt Damon in his funniest form since this Youtube gem.

New Robin Hood details out

9 June, 2009

More news has emerged on Russel Crowe and Ridley Scott’s much troubled Robin Hood Film.

After being known as Nottingham since day one angry Aussie Crowe has revealed in a radio interview that the film will now be released under the startlingly innovative moniker of Robin Hood. Quite how they came up at that off-the-wall idea I doubt we will ever know.

Director Scott has also binned his original idea of focussing the story on the Sheriff of Nottingham as the hero, and having Robin Hood as the film’s villain. Clearly this was interesting, so Scott has decided to ditch the plan in favor of a more familiar platform – with Robin Hood stealing from the rich and giving to the poor.

Last month a few more photos were leaked of angry men in armour running about in fields after this shot of Crowe in action, so it would seem that hugely delayed production is now up and running.

robin-hood-russell-crowe

You can listen to the ten minute interview with Crowe on the film’s set courtesy of livenews.com.au here.

Let me know what you think of Robin Hood by leaving a comment below, is this project back on target or just far wide of the mark?

In film Production, no one can hear you scream

4 June, 2009

NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO…

Seemingly not satisfied with smashing a train wreck of remakes through some of cinemas most treasured franchises, the powers that be in Hollywood have now decided to bastardise the Alien films furthermore with that dirtiest of words – a prequel.

News broke out last weekthat Ridley Scott’s 1979 horror classic, Alien, will be stained with a prequel – supposedly focusing this time on the crashed space ship which landed John Hurt with a severe abdominal blight in the first film. Although this time around the plot will feature a different kind of alien to the Aliens we know and love.

Now, to me, that sounds like cack, and a complete mar on the franchise – especially if the alien in the new Alien film isn’t an Alien but an alien, because this is a franchise built around H R Giger’s Alien, and fans will be expecting Aliens not aliens. The concept of an alien in an Alien film is, well, just alien. You heard.

Tony Scott will be producing, while advert director Carl Rinsch will take up the directors chair. Slashfilm have put together a compilation of Rinsch’s work here. Call me cynic but as pretty and clever as these ads all are, time has proved that plenty of  shiny effects and flashing lights definitely do not make certain of a good film.

The news comes shortly after Robert Rodriguez announced he would be taking on the Predator franchise, and is currently stuck in to writing Predators – a project I also have my ample share of reservations about.

I’m rapidly running out of patience with vacuous, dull Hollywood remakes and prequels. People with pockets of cash don’t seem to realise that the reason these classic films are still loved so much today is because creative ideas and innovation doesn’t get boring over time – remodelling a great idea and trying to force it into a money making mould does. Very quickly. Sadly, detritus like X-men Origins: Wolverine is looking increasingly safe for guaranteeing box office cash so there doesn’t seem to be any quick road out on the horizon. But really now, Hollywood if you’re listening – start making good films again.

Film news fun

24 April, 2009

It’s been a while since there has been a round-up of what’s in production on this fine film blog. And with an abundance of sequels, prequels and sequel prequel prequels on the horizon, I’ve decided to focus on the more interesting and innovative offerings currently in development – just to remind Hollywood that people actually CAN cope with a new story/character/franchise every now and again without weeping uncontrollably for hours and shaking in a corner, afraid and lonely.

First is news that filming of the latest Martin Scorsese/Leonardo Di Caprio shindig, Shutter Island, is well under way, with Empire unveiling a gripping set shot of the great man and his cast shooting away merrily. The film’s premise follows Di Caprio and fellow US Marshall Mark Ruffalo as they travel to the eponymous location in search of a vanished murderess who has recently escaped from a psychiatric hospital. By all accounts the plot is truly mental and twists and turns in just about every direction imaginable. Scorsese is apparently going all out with this one, following on from the Departed’s Oscar success and going for all kinds of weird, crazy-man techniques to get this made. The film is due for release early October over here.

Hot on the heels of Napoleon Dynamite comes the equally exlposive Black Dynamite. Offensive, rude, crude and brutal, this spoof blaxploitation flick looks like it could sneak in under the radar to become this year’s hit cult comedy. You can check out the fully-offensive red band trailer here, but it contains naughty words and rude bits, so it’s brilliant.

Neil Marshall is an excellent director. Dog Soldiers was fun, The Descent was the first horror film to really blow me away for a good five years and his upcoming historical-thriller-come-creepy-cool film, Centurion, looks just as promising. The premise is ace: Michael Fassbender (300, Hunger) stars as part of the mysterious Roman Ninth Legion, who ventured over Hadrian’s Wall into Scotland to fight the Scots and vanished forever… Although Wikipedia (where I do none of my research) laughs in the face of this historical nonsense it still makes for a cool pitch, with Marshall going down the line of the Romans being picked off by a mysterious presence in the woods. I’ve got faith in Marshall, keep your eye on this one

More historical tomfoolery is also in the pipeline with Outlander, a sci-fi Viking story starring Jesus. The film, directed by newcomer American, Howard McCain, will stand back and watch the madness as a humanoid from the future played by James Caviezel (the guy with the beard from The Passion of The Christ) falls from space and is taken prisoner by Vikings. According to the Guardian, McCain is a big Beowulf fan and you can expect plenty of mythical undertones as our misplaced alien attempts to warn his captors of a monster called Moorwen and all the terrible things that lie in wait for them. Interestingly though, there’s promise of a back story in which the alien’s race have a long, bitter history of persecuting the monster and it really has good reason to be annoyed. I promise none of that was made up.

Finally there’s Zombieland, a horror-comedy starring Woody Harrelson as a zombie fighter named Albuquerque fighting for survival in a world overrun by the pesky living dead. Harrelson makes up one half of a pair of mismatched survivors in this tale of friendship and redemption. There’s some cool set pictures on Flickr here which look pretty interesting. I like Woody Harrelson, mainly because he is absolutely mental. My fondness of him has increased ten fold after reading this story of him attacking a photographer who he claimed he mistook for a zombie. The good folk at filmjunk have it all here along with the most fantastic PR statement ever released and the following video of the whole affair. Enjoy.

Pictures, robots, Sly, just kill me now

16 April, 2009

Readers, rejoice! For this post features a feast of magnificent pictorial pleasures for you to soak up.

First up is new concept art for Christian Bale led robot kicking flick, Terminator Salvation. Avid readers (both of them) will be well aware of my deeply unhealthy love for the Terminator series. Yes, yes, we all know that only the first two films were any good, but despite being bloody awful both the third film and the Sarah Connor Chronicles spin-off had some pretty interesting ideas and the latest outing looks promising, although I’m still very dubious of McG’s directing prowess. These new pictures, courtesy of SarahConnorSociety.net, show some pretty awesome looking concept art for the film, which is now due for release on 3rd June.

terminatorsondermotivbig1 

Terminator Salvation: The Future Begins

Also for those who havn’t seen the latest trailer yet, take a look at it here:

In other amazing news, Empire has unveiled a huge, manly handful of pictures from filming of my new favourite film of all time, The Expendables. For more details on how unbelievably awesome this film is likely to be, check out my last post. Needless to say that this is awesome and if you want to see more just click the picture below.

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So what do you think? Excited about any of these? Leave me a comment and let me know what you think. And for those techno-gurus that are way ahead of me, why not follow me on Twitter: AdamChad

I’ll be back… and more excited!

31 March, 2009

Speaking of comebacks… News has reached the technoweb that cinema’s greatest auteur, Sylvester Stallone, has talked the single most incredible action hero of all time  back to the silver screen – Arnold Schwarzenegger!

The Governator has officially signed on the dotted line to take part in Sly’s upcoming testo-frenzy, The Expendables. The film follows a group of nations (led by America, obviously) team up to send an elite squad of their finest soldiers into a generic South American nation to assasinate a corrupt, murderous, evil leader, who has been making people sad, miserable and dead for almost 20 years.

It hasn’t been made clear yet what role Arnie will be playing, and whether it will be a character role or just a cameo (which is probably far more likely, if a little upsetting), but we can be sure that he will join an action fan’s wet-dream of a cast including Sly himself, Jason Statham, Mickey Rourke, Dolph Lungdren, Jet Li and Eric Roberts– as well as some fairly solid rumours of 50 Cent, WWE wrestler Steve ‘Stone Cold’ Austin, token pretty lady Charisma Carpenter and the outstandingly brilliant Danny Trejo (with the smart money on him as the bad guy to beat).

Needless to say that this looks absolutely fantastic. If ever there was a pitch that ticked every action film box in the book, added about 20 more, ticked them,  machine gunnned the list, blew it up, delivered a witty one liner and ran off with a pretty girl, then this is it.

In an ode to the Austrian Oak himself, here is the trailer to the 1985 action classic Commando. If you haven’t seen this film, you are not worth knowing.

Somewhere, somehow, someone’s gonna pay…