Posts

Elizabeth Olsen Teases 1950s Setting For WandaVision Disney+ Series

Actress Elizabeth Olsen revealed that WandaVision will be set in the ‘50s. Based on the Marvel characters Wanda Maximoff (aka Scarlet Witch) and Vision, the Disney+ limited series will begin filming in the fall and will reportedly be six hours long. Earlier this month, Disney and Marvel officially announced WandaVision.

In the MCU, Olsen made her franchise debut as Wanda Maximoff/Scarlet Witch in Captain America: The Winter Soldier. Olsen later reprised the superhero character in Avengers: Age of Ultron, Captain America: Civil War, and Avengers: Infinity War. In the new MCU film Avengers: Endgame, Olsen will once again reprise her character, along with numerous others who were previously manipulated by the big baddie Thanos. For WandaVision, Olsen will co-star with her MCU love interest Paul Bettany, who will reprise his franchise role as the android Vision. On April 16, Marvel Studios president Kevin Feige stated that WandaVision will intersect with the MCU’s Phase 2 “in a very big way.”

Related: Elizabeth Olsen’s Marvel Contract: Upcoming Scarlet Witch Movies

Per Variety, Olsen recently teased WandaVision by revealing that the Disney+ series will take place in ‘50s. This information is based on the streaming platform’s launch chat, with Olsen noting “There’s quite a few other comic books that we’re pulling from and it’s going to be Wanda and the Vision… they showed a photo of us in the ’50s.” For WandaVision, Captain Marvel co-writer Jac Schaeffer will serve as the writer, producer, and showrunner. She also co-wrote the upcoming comedy The Hustle starring Rebel Wilson and Anne Hathaway, along with the upcoming MCU film Black Widow starring Scarlett Johansson in the title role. As for Olsen’s WandaVision co-star Bettany, he previously received a Saturn Award nomination for his supporting performance in Avengers: Age of Ultron. Most recently, he portrayed Dryden Vos in Ron Howard’s space western Solo: A Star Wars Story.

Olsen is the younger sister of Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen, both of whom famously starred in the late ’80s/early ‘90s ABC sitcom Full House. After delivering an acclaimed performance in 2011’s Martha Marcy May Marlene – her feature film debut – Olsen has since appeared in films like Silent House, Godzilla, and I Saw the Light.

Based on Elizabeth Olsen’s MCU character arc, franchise fans will undoubtedly be curious to see how she’s incorporated into Avengers: Endgame. But, as the saying goes, the writing seems to be on the wall given the existence of WandaVision, and Marvel seemingly has plenty of surprises on the way. Disney+ will also produce a limited series focused on the MCU’s Loki, along with a separate series about Falcon and The Winter Soldier.

More: These Marvel Shows Are Coming After Avengers: Endgame

Source: Variety


2019-04-25 10:04:46

Q.V. Hough

Star Trek Theory: Discovery Is Setting Up A Pike/Spock Spinoff

Star Trek: Discovery may be setting up a spinoff that centers on the adventures of Captain Pike and Spock aboard the USS Enterprise. Discovery‘s versions of both classic Star Trek characters have been well received, and after getting a glimpse of the Enterprise bridge in season 2’s penultimate episode, fans are wondering if we really have to say goodbye to Pike and company so soon.

CBS All Access has made no secret of the fact that Star Trek is going to be the beating heart of the streaming service going forward. In the wake of Discovery‘s success, several other upcoming Star Trek series have been announced, including the animated comedy Lower Decks, the Michelle Yeoh starring Section 31 spinoff, and the much celebrated return of Patrick Stewart to the franchise in an as-yet-unnamed Jean-Luc Picard series.

Related: Jonathan Frakes to Direct Episodes of Patrick Stewart’s Picard Series

All of those shows certainly have potential, but the notion of a TV show taking place on the original Enterprise with Pike and Spock has a different kind of allure. But is it something CBS would want to pursue? Does it fill a hole in their longterm strategy for the franchise? Let’s break it down.

  • This Page: Captain Pike’s Popularity & Star Trek’s Presence In 23rd Century
  • Page 2: The Kelvin Movies & The Enterprise

Captain Christopher Pike is a towering figure in Star Trek lore, but he’s never really been allowed to take center stage. The character was abandoned after the first pilot for Star Trek: The Original Series, with Jeffrey Hunter’s brooding captain ditched in favor of William Shatner’s swashbuckling James T. Kirk. That pilot footage would be brilliantly repurposed in the classic two-part episode “The Menagerie,” but that was for all intents and purposes the end of Pike’s story. Bruce Greenwood played an older, more soulful version of Pike in the J.J. Abrams reboot films, serving as a father figure to Kirk who ultimately died at the hands of Khan in Star Trek Into Darkness.

Related: Every Star Trek Movie Ranked (From Worst To Best)

Anson Mount’s Pike has been a very different animal. After the crew of the Discovery were betrayed by their Mirror Universe former captain, Gabriel Lorca, Pike’s easy charm and sense of morality – as well as has implicit trust in Michael Burnham – have re-centered the show and solved many of the character problems that plagued Star Trek: Discovery season 1. Mount is dynamite in the role, and even if we know what grisly fate awaits him, he would canonically be the captain of the Enterprise for another decade or so. Petitions for Mount’s Pike to be given his own show have begun to spring up, and it would seem like a natural progression for both the character and CBS’s growing slate of Star Trek projects.

At this point, it would be a major surprise if Star Trek: Discovery season 3 didn’t take place in the future, perhaps as far as a thousand years past the 23rd century. The Picard series will take place at the twilight of the 24th century, and it’s unclear which era of Star Trek lore Lower Decks will occupy. If Discovery does leave the 23rd century behind, it will presumably have to jettison a lot of the recurring characters and subplots that are specific to that era, many of which are still unresolved.

Related: Star Trek Theory: Discovery Time Travels Into The Future For Season 3

The easiest way to pick up those threads would be throw a Pike/Spock show. Both characters are already familiar with most of the major players of the era, so there wouldn’t be much need to reintroduce concepts to the audience. It would also uphold a sort of Star Trek tradition, where one show introduces a new species or conflict, only for it to be further explored in a spinoff series. Star Trek: The Next Generation introduced the Bajorans, Cardassians, and Trill before Star Trek: Deep Space Nine went on to more fully define those species. A Pike/Spock series that stood in opposition to the creeping amorality of Section 31’s influence on the Federation would be a great way to grapple with some of the weightier questions that Discovery too often chooses to punt on.

Page 2 of 2: The Kelvin Movies Are Done & The Enterprise Is Worth Seeing Again

It’s still possible there will be more Kelvin timeline films, but the prospect seems fairly unlikely these days. Star Trek Beyond underperformed at the box office, and Chris Pine walked away from the negotiating table after Paramount attempted to lowball his salary for a proposed fourth film. The Star Trek film series is essentially mothballed at the moment, and there’s been no real indication that’s going to change anytime soon.

That could be used to CBS’s advantage. Star Trek’s film and TV rights were split by corporate reorganization about a decade ago – CBS controls the TV rights, Paramount controls the movie rights. Rumors have persisted for years that the two corporate entities have been waging something of a cold war over Star Trek, squabbling over who controls what aspects of the franchise. If Paramount isn’t even developing any Star Trek projects, any studio spats over use of iconic elements like the Enterprise and Spock would seem like a moot point.

Related: Why Star Trek 4 Has Been Cancelled

The general setup of the Enterprise’s mission of exploration also just lends itself better to television than it does films, as it’s an ongoing story. It’s been 15 years since audiences were able to tune in to a weekly show about the Enterprise exploring the galaxy – and that was the widely reviled Star Trek: Enterprise. A Pike/Spock series would give the franchise an opportunity to get back to basics, while still building on the innovations introduced by Discovery.

There are plenty of intellectual and corporate strategic reasons to pursue a series set on Captain Pike’s Enterprise, but there’s also one that is purely visceral. In the first part of the Star Trek: Discovery season 2 finale, “Such Sweet Sorrow,” we get our first look at Discovery‘s version of the iconic Enterprise bridge, and it is a sight to behold. Unlike the “Apple Store” redesign seen in the Kelvin films, the Discovery Enterprise – commanded by Rebecca Romijn’s Number One while Pike has been away – is a tasteful update of the TOS bridge. It’s much larger and with modern lighting and design elements, but also unmistakably the bridge of the NCC-1701, with red/orange railing and authentic reproductions of the old set’s knobs and lights.

Related: Star Trek Theory: [SPOILER] Is Discovery’s Final Captain

The production team did an amazing job melding the style of Discovery with the retro 60s feel of TOS, and it’s almost painful to think we’re never going to see that set used after this season of Discovery ends. But it doesn’t have to be this way. Whether they meant to or not, CBS has created the foundation for a great series that fans are dying to see. And while Mount’s Pike has been getting the lion’s share of the praise, Ethan Peck’s Spock has been nearly as remarkable, and Peck has had to play with a decidedly more famous and beloved character than Mount. Peck’s ability to maintain the core of the character established by the late Leonard Nimoy – while saddled with mental instability and a scraggly depression beard – has been a real achievement, and he deserves to take a stab at the more traditional iteration of the Vulcan science officer.

There’s no guarantee CBS will pursue a Pike/Spock series. Executive producer Alex Kurtzman seems to have a fairly good idea of where he wants to take the Star Trek franchise, and he’s yet to really acknowledge the fan desire to see a full series about Pike’s Enterprise. But the pieces are all there, and while Star Trek: Discovery has been a success, it’s been a controversial, polarizing one. If CBS wants to earn some goodwill and gift themselves a surefire hit, all they need to do is re-board the Enterprise.

Next: Discovery (Finally) Has A Proper Star Trek Crew In The Season 2 Finale


2019-04-17 07:04:46

Dusty Stowe

Supernatural Is Setting Up God’s Return In Time For The Final Season

Supernatural appears to be setting up a return for the Lord Almighty himself ahead of the show’s forthcoming conclusion. The long-running fantasy series is currently nearing the end of its fourteenth season and recently enjoyed a 300th episode special which saw the highly-anticipated return of Jeffrey Dean Morgan as John Winchester. All good things must come to an end however, and it was announced last month that Supernatural‘s next hunt would be its last, bringing the story of Sam and Dean to a close with season 15.

One character who didn’t make a surprise appearance in the 300th special was Chuck Shurley, better known to viewers as God. The omnipotent creator of all things was originally only ever mentioned in hushed enigmatic tones during Supernatural‘s earlier seasons, but was eventually revealed to be an author that Sam and Dean had encountered previously on several occasions. God was last seen at the end of season 11 walking into the unknown after an emotional reunion with his sister, Amara.

Related: 10 Things We’ll Miss About Supernatural After It Ends

“Game Night” provided the biggest hint yet that God’s return to the series could be imminent, and with Supernatural‘s end now in sight, this is unlikely to be a coincidence. The episode was split into two stories, with Dean and the gang battling against the Devil and Castiel on a separate mission, teaming up with Sister Jo in an attempt to make contact with God. This angelic duo managed to track down a former acquaintance of Joshua – the only angel known to speak directly with God. This man, a down-on-his-luck trinket store owner, seemed of little help to Castiel at first, but did confirm that Joshua used some kind of device to send God a message, and that the item was somewhere within the cavernous shop. He also revealed that God never got back to Joshua, rudely leaving him hanging on “message read.”

Eventually, Castiel finds the item he’s been looking for and sends a heartfelt plea to God to help Sam and Dean with their adopted nephilim and Lucifer’s very own spawn, Jack. Once again, God doesn’t pick up but Castiel isn’t too disappointed – admitting that, deep down, he only sought God’s help to avoid facing the reality of Jack’s soulless situation. On the surface, this short arc could be seen as nothing more than a relatively meaningless filler segment to balance out the satanic action elsewhere. However, with Castiel making a direct call to the big man himself, this episode perhaps feels more like a prelude to God’s Supernatural comeback.

Such a scenario is made even more likely due to the fact that God’s arc is one of the few unresolved stories left in Supernatural. With the show’s end in sight, there aren’t too many dangling plot threads to tie up, but God still has plenty to answer for after becoming disillusioned with both Heaven and Earth and disappearing into the aether, leaving both sides to their own devices. This has caused untold trouble, particularly for the Winchesters, who have been forced to defend Earth from a number of God’s disgruntled children and would-be successors. Although God’s return in season 11 did somewhat deal with the circumstances surrounding his disappearance, Chuck is still acting like a firmly hands-off Dad and hoping mankind will learn to stand on its own two feet (despite clear evidence to the contrary). This is surely something that will be addressed before Supernatural runs its final end credits.

Castiel’s plea may just provide a clue as to how God will find that resolution. Many of the deity’s dilemmas revolve around the disparity between angel and human, the jealousy the guardians of Heaven feel over their inferior Earth-dwellers, and God’s sadness that neither race could be what he envisioned. Since Jack is part human and part angel, he is perfectly positioned to find the balance that God sought before his disappearance and Castiel’s request to help the nephilim may prove too tempting to turn down.

Furthermore, the key question isn’t whether God received Castiel’s message (of course he did, he’s God), the issue is whether or not God feels the need to respond. The Winchesters could’ve used some divine help on literally hundreds of occasions is Supernatural‘s history and only in rare and dire situations has God actually intervened – even then usually at the very last minute. As such, it’s not at all surprising that Castiel’s message wasn’t answered immediately, but that isn’t to say that God won’t take action further down the line.

With Supernatural‘s conclusion approaching fast, it’s also highly likely that the final season will raise the paranormal stakes more than ever before. With such an ambitious finale in the offing, it’s only natural that God himself should show up. Whether to help the Winchesters in their final battle or to personally thank them for all the hard work and sacrifice they’ve been through in the name of protecting the world, a Supernatural ending without God would feel somewhat incomplete.

Next: 10 Possible Spinoffs From Supernatural

Supernatural continues with “Absence” April 11th on The CW.


2019-04-11 06:04:18

Craig Elvy

How The MCU Is Setting Up SHIELD’s Replacement For Phase 4

The Marvel Cinematic Universe seems to be setting up a S.H.I.E.L.D. replacement in Phase 4; could Nick Fury now be working for the organization known as S.W.O.R.D.? Fury vanished from the MCU in 2015’s Avengers: Age of Ultron, finally returning for a brief moment in Avengers: Infinity War. Tie-in comics have revealed that he’s been operating as an independent operative for the last few years, working with Maria Hill to deal with crises after the splintering of the Avengers in Captain America: Civil War.

And it looks as though Fury will play an important role in the future of the MCU. Captain Marvel is essentially Fury’s origin story, which will set the scene for his inevitable return in Avengers: Endgame. Both Fury and Hill will then star in Spider-Man: Far From Home, next year’s Spider-Man sequel that’s set minutes after the events of Endgame. Given this is the first MCU Phase 4 movie, it’s generally believed that the small role indicates just how significant Fury will be to the MCU going forward. There are even rumors that Fury could then star in his own TV series on Disney Plus, but that hasn’t been confirmed yet.

Related: Every Marvel TV Show Coming To The Disney Streaming Service

But what role will Nick Fury play in the MCU after the dust has settled from Avengers: Endgame? The evidence is building that he’s working with a new organization – and it’s possible that they could even be S.W.O.R.D., another one of Marvel Comics’ secretive organizations.

  • This Page: S.H.I.E.L.D. Is Over In The Movies
  • Next Page: How Nick Fury Could Be Working For S.W.O.R.D.

Nick Fury Has A New Organization In Spider-Man: Far From Home

As noted, official Captain Marvel tie-in comics have revealed that Fury and Hill have been working independently for the last few years. They’ve been acting as global troubleshooters, using resources Fury had hidden away against this eventuality while he was Director of S.H.I.E.L.D.. It looks as though he still had a lot of connections; there was a reference to Klein, a S.H.I.E.L.D. loyalist who apparently now works for a company called Transpo and has been helping cover Fury’s tracks. One scene in the comics also suggested that Fury is still in touch with James Rhodes, aka War Machine.

But Avengers: Endgame looks set to change Nick Fury’s status quo considerably. A batch of set photos from Spider-Man: From Far Home showed a fleet of S.H.I.E.L.D.-style cars pulling up to surround Jake Gyllenhaal’s Mysterio, What’s more, descriptions of Spider-Man: Far From Home’s first trailer have stressed that Fury gives Peter Parker some alternate costumes over the course of the movie (he’s left his actual Spider-Man suit back in the United States). One of these, a stealth-type Spider-Man suit, is reminiscent of a costume S.H.I.E.L.D. gave to Spider-Man in the “Secret War” event in the comics. So it looks like Nick Fury is back in a position where he’s playing with considerable resources – presumably acting as a key agent (if not leader) of an all-new organization. Their remit appears to be fairly similar to S.H.I.E.L.D.’s, given they recruit Spider-Man to help deal with the threat of mysterious elemental forces wreaking havoc in Europe.

As Far As The Movies Are Concerned, SHIELD Is Over

It’s commonly assumed that Fury’s new organization is a resurgent S.H.I.E.L.D.. In reality, though, that doesn’t currently seem to be particularly likely. It’s important to remember that Marvel Studios and Marvel Television operate independently now, and that frankly relations between the two Disney subsidiaries don’t seem to be good. As a result, Marvel Television tend to only have access to properties that Marvel Studios have no plans for. And Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. has now been renewed for two more seasons by ABC, which will air in 2019 and 2020. That strongly suggests Marvel Studios has no interest in S.H.I.E.L.D. at all; as far as the films are concerned, S.H.I.E.L.D. might as well have shut down completely in the aftermath of 2014’s Captain America: The Winter Soldier.

Related: Marvel TV Is More Successful Than You Think – And We Can Prove It

It’s possible that Marvel Studios will simply create a brand new organization from scratch, one that serves a similar purpose to S.H.I.E.L.D.. After all, the MCU is gradually moving away from its comic book roots, allowing writers to do their own thing (in addition to leaving Earth behind to go more cosmic); Avengers: Endgame has been described as an entirely original story, for example, while there’s certainly no comic book precedent for anything that’s been described in Spider-Man: Far From Home. But Marvel may not need to take that approach; instead, they could take inspiration from another organization in the comics, S.W.O.R.D..

Page 2 of 2: Could Nick Fury Be Working For S.W.O.R.D.?

S.W.O.R.D. Could Enter The MCU In Phase 4

In the comics, S.W.O.R.D. is the Sentient World Observation and Response Department. They were created by Joss Whedon in his popular Astonishing X-Men run, and were envisioned as an agency who handle “external” matters. While S.H.I.E.L.D. concern themselves with home-grown, human threats, S.W.O.R.D. is interested in aliens and – yes – elemental beings. They’re typically run by Agent Brand, a half-mutant, half-alien with a serious attitude. Under Brand’s leadership, as Whedon quipped, S.W.O.R.D. make S.H.I.E.L.D. look like the Girl Scouts. But that’s largely because they’re working on a scale even S.H.I.E.L.D. doesn’t like to dream of.

Related: Marvel After Avengers 4: Everything We Know About MCU Phase 4

The Avengers movie saw the general public learn about aliens in the universe for the first time. Since then, a number of major incidents have surely left the world terrified; the Dark Elves struck London in Thor: The Dark World, and Thanos and the Black Order attacked both New York and Wakanda in Avengers: Infinity War – which resulted in Thanos’ snap, aka the Decimation. It’s logical that humanity will seek to find a way to protect itself – and an organization like S.W.O.R.D., presumably reporting to the United Nations and thus democratically accountable after a fashion, would be ideal. What’s more, Nick Fury would probably fit in quite well with S.W.O.R.D.; he’s been at the forefront of protecting the Earth from alien threats since 1995, after all. Fury wouldn’t be trusted as Director after the fall of S.H.I.E.L.D., of course, but he would still work as a high-ranking field operative.

How S.W.O.R.D. Could Appear In Spider-Man: Far From Home

There’s just one catch; the film rights to S.W.O.R.D. are generally believed to sit with 20th Century Fox. That always seemed likely, given the organization was introduced in the X-Men comics, and has continued to play a major role in that franchise; in fact, Agent Brand even dated the Beast for several years in the comics. And this was confirmed by Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. VFX supervisor Mark Kolpack back in 2017, when rumors began to circulate that season 5 could introduce the MCU version of S.W.O.R.D.. “As cool as that would be,” Kolpack said, “that is part of the X-Men universe.” The rights will revert to Marvel upon completion of the Disney/Fox acquisition, but until that time, Marvel will be unable to use S.W.O.R.D..

There may be a way around this problem, though. The Disney/Fox purchase looks almost inevitable at this stage, and indeed there have been reports it could close by January 2019. This seems a little more unlikely at present; the deal is currently being examined by international regulators, and Brazil’s antitrust regulator Cade has raised some concerns. It has until March to recommend remedial measures, which Disney and Fox will presumably acquiesce with in order to get approval. Still, for all this will hold things up a little, the fact remains that the acquisition is still expected to be completed in early 2019 – well before July, when Spider-Man: Far From Home will be released.

Related: Disney Plus Streaming Service Is Using Fox Content In Advertising

It wouldn’t actually be too difficult for Marvel to edit S.W.O.R.D. into the film. Let’s assume, for example, that no explicit dialogue says the name of the organization Fury is working for. That would mean Marvel could edit it in pretty easily, using simple CGI to add the circular S.W.O.R.D. logo to some of the uniforms or vehicles. Attentive viewers have already noted that Spider-Man’s stealth suit has a convenient circular shoulder-panel that’s perfectly suited to adding a CGI logo on during post-production. So Marvel could edit S.W.O.R.D. into the film, leaving Fury’s organization mysterious at this point but setting the stage for them to become increasingly important.

Captain Marvel And The Future Of S.W.O.R.D.

It’s interesting to note that S.W.O.R.D. would fit well with the little we know of MCU’s Phase 4. Prior to his departure from Marvel earlier this year, James Gunn revealed that Marvel was working on a number of cosmic scripts. Those plans are no doubt in a state of flux; they were intended to be launched by Gunn’s Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3, which is currently on hiatus. Still, progress on The Eternals strongly suggests that Marvel still want to take the MCU in a cosmic direction (with The Eternals even replacing the Guardians of the Galaxy), and S.W.O.R.D. would work tremendously well in this context. Meanwhile, it’s generally assumed that Brie Larson’s Captain Marvel will be a major figure in Phase 4 and beyond. Significantly, in the comics, Captain Marvel has become closely tied to S.W.O.R.D.; in fact, she even replaced Agent Brand as Director of the organization, and runs its Alpha Flight rapid response program.

Related: Captain Marvel Could Have Some Big Black Widow Connections

All this means there’s tremendous story potential for S.W.O.R.D.. What’s more, this idea would essentially turn Nick Fury into the Agent Coulson of the MCU’s Phase 4 – the field operative who helps the heroes out and organizes them. It would explain just why Fury seems to be such a prominent figure in the post-Avengers: Endgame MCU, and even provide the potential for a Nick Fury TV series on Disney Plus to explore S.W.O.R.D.’s day-to-day operations, or perhaps even how it all came together without anyone noticing.

More: Every Upcoming Marvel Movie (2018 – 2020)



Source link
2018-12-16 03:12:37

Does Bad Times At The El Royale Have A Post-Credits Scene?

Drew Goddard’s Bad Times at the El Royale sees the writer-director try his hand at a ’60s-set noir thriller, but does it have a post-credits scene setting up a sequel or clearing up the ending? Goddard made a name for himself in Hollywood as a writer, working on TV shows like Buffy the Vampire Slayer and Alias. He made his directorial debut on 2012’s The Cabin in the Woods, a film he co-wrote with Joss Whedon. The movie became a hit with critics and well-remembered by horror fans for its handling of tropes typical to the genre. Now, Goddard returns to film directing with this year’s Bad Times at the El Royale.

The movie follows seven strangers over the course of one night in the ’60s at a motel called the El Royale, which sits on the border between California and Nevada. The star-studded cast includes Jeff Bridges, Cynthia Erivo, Jon Hamm, Dakota Johnson, Chris Hemsworth, Cailee Spaeny and Lewis Pullman as guests of the motel and the concierge working at the establishment. As the movie progresses, viewers follow the various characters throughout the night and gain insight into the backstories before arriving at the El Royale.

Related: Screen Rant’s Review of Bad Times at the El Royale

Now that the movie is in theaters, fans of Goddard – and/or those intrigued by the Bad Times at the El Royale trailers – have a chance to check it out, but they may be wondering if there’s an extra scene after the credits. Unfortunately, Bad Times at the El Royale does not have a post-credits scene, which means the movie wraps up entirely before the credits start to roll. While it’s always worth it to watch the credits of a film and get an idea of who was involved in making it, Bad Times at the El Royale doesn’t feature any extra teaser or scene at the very end.

Those who have seen Bad Times at the El Royale know the movie doesn’t quite leave room for a sequel, though there are undoubtedly ways one could be done. Still, it makes sense that the film doesn’t feature a post-credits scene setting up a follow-up. It’s relatively clear that there won’t be a sequel to the movie – just like there won’t be a sequel to Cabin in the Woods – but not all post-credits scenes are explicitly sequel teasers. Some are simply an additional scene that offer added context or insight into the main movie.

For instance, a Bad Times at the El Royale post-credits scene could have cleared up the mystery of who was on the film reel that’s discussed throughout the movie. Instead, viewers are left to ponder who might be the man on that reel (which was, no doubt, Goddard’s intention). So, while there may have been a way for Bad Times at the El Royale to incorporate a post-credits scene, it also doesn’t necessarily need one. At the end of the day, whether or not a movie includes a post-credits scene is up to the director and Goddard chose not to include one for Bad Times at the El Royale.

Next: Bad Times At The El Royale’s Ending & Big Mysteries Explained



Source link
2018-10-11 04:10:56 – Molly Freeman

20 Things Wrong With American Horror Story We All Choose To Ignore

The horror anthology hit TV show American Horror Story just might be the magnum opus of Ryan Murphy and Brad Falchuck. Scarier and more riveting than any of the duo’s other projects, the spine-tingling series features a new theme and characters every season that are all still linked to each other’s universe. From the casting announcements to the series hints, theme reveals, and each season’s unique introductory visuals, it’s riveting entertainment all around. Even so, some seasons fall further off the mark than others, with many episodes barely even registering on the “horror” radar while others left us scratching our heads wondering what the heck just happened.

The thing is, we tend to give glaring errors, plot flops, and other things wrong with the show a pass because we love it so much. From intriguing horror to irresistible characters, from unexpected plot twists to some of the best storytelling on TV, American Horror Story keeps us coming back, not because it’s flawless but because it’s still addictive despite, and sometimes because of, its many flaws.

We might love a character and conveniently forget that he or she is a monster. We’ll keep tuning in even after an entire sequence left us feeling disgusted, embarrassed for the actress who had to play out the scene, or even angry at the creators themselves. It’s just that addictive.

We love it and we’ll keep coming back for me, even with these 20 Things Wrong With American Horror Story We All Choose To Ignore.

20 Some Seasons Aren’t Scary

With a name like American Horror Story, you might expect every episode to be a scream-fest. That’s just not the case, especially in seasons four and five. While there’s no shortage of horror-inducing characters in these seasons, they didn’t really give us nightmares like previous and subsequent seasons were able to do.

Were we jaded from all the mutants, ghosts, zombies, and other creatures in previous seasons?

Both Freak Show and Hotel fell short on promises of terror, often vying for more intense drama (a calling card of Falchuck and Murphy) instead. While we still received interesting stories, Gaga’s vampire and Twisty the Clown just weren’t all that scary.

19 There’s No Reason Given For All The Hotel Vampire Kids

In season five, Hotel, Lady Gaga’s character, The Countess Elizabeth, is a little less fabulous than we expected her to be. Perhaps she couldn’t live up to the Gaga we all know and love already. One of the things that just made zero sense about the character was her propensity to collect children and turn them into little vampires. Does Elizabeth have an old woman in the shoe complex? Is she just that bored? What is the point?

Here’s the thing about kids in horror movies: they add instant scare-factor. Take a look at most scary film kids, from Village of the Damned to The Others and you’ll see the scariest moments. The fact that the vampire kid collection wasn’t even scary was a pretty big letdown.

18 Teeth Fall From The Sky For No Reason

Season six of AHS, Roanoke, was able to recover some of the lost ground from the previous two less-scary seasons but still suffered from the lack of the one and only Jessica Lang. The season saw a return to the haunted house theme, always popular in AHS history, and wove in some new elements, like the whole “based on a true story” theme.  Between Deliverance-like hillbillies and more incredible Kathy Bates, Roanake was much better-received than Hotel, but it had some weird unexplained moments, like teeth randomly falling from the sky.

Not only do the teeth inexplicably fall while Matt is at work, but they also disappear.

The reason why is never given, prompting us to chalk this one up to “random scare tactic.”

17 Queenie Tried To Hook Up With A Minotaur

While we definitely applaud Murphy and Falchuck’s use of mythology throughout American Horror Story, it often makes no sense. Gabourey Sidibe was fantastic as Queenie, the young and lonely witch who gave as well as she got, used LaLaurie as her own personal racist slave, and really deserved main credits billing. But there was that one time she tried to hook up with a grotesque Minotaur…

While the inclusion of adult content is pretty standard in AHS, getting involved with a man who has bull’s head sewed over his own is pretty far out there. It didn’t make any sense, nor did Queenie’s own survival following the incident (or anything else including the Minotaur, really), so we just move along and say that there’s nothing to see here.

16 Zoe’s Hell Is Just Life Without Kyle

Zoe Benson, portrayed by Taissa Farmiga, starts out as a compelling character in the third season of American Horror Story, Coven. She has unique powers that pay homage to classic horror and a long journey ahead.

Tossing in a love interest is a great way to derail a personal growth story.

That’s what happened to Zoe with Kyle, her resurrected boyfriend played by Evan Peters. While we’re glad that Murphy and Falchuck used Kyle to illustrate that mothers can be abusive to their sons just as much as fathers can, “life without Kyle” as Zoe’s own personal hell is really stupid and overly angst-ridden.

15 Aliens In Asylum Makes No Sense

When it comes to American Horror Story, many fans reacted to the inclusion of aliens in season two, Asylum, in the same way that fans of Indiana Jones reacted to the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull. For many horror fans, aliens don’t enter the territory without very specific rules, and you certainly don’t add aliens into an already-existing story for a scare factor.

The aliens of AHS also just weren’t scary. Sure, they made Pepper more interesting and gave convenient explanations for a few weird happenings, but at the end of the day mixing aliens in with mutants, a mean nun, demons, and war criminals just doesn’t work. It’s a hodgepodge of plot devices tossed together like a salad with too many kinds of dressing. Sometimes simpler is just better.

14 The Musical Sequences

We get that Sister Jude is losing her mind in this tenth episode of season two, Asylum, but must we lose ours as well? The episode itself was gripping, but watching Jessica Lange sashay through “The Name Game” wasn’t nearly as eerie as it should have been. It played off as more of an homage to the creators’ Glee in a way that didn’t work.

While some critics enjoyed the mind-boggling number, many of us like to pretend it never happened.

It’s not the last time the showrunners implemented a bit of music and dance, either. Season four, Freak Show, featured several ditties, including a rendition of “Come As You Are” by Evan Peters, Sarah Paulson’s “Dream a Little Dream of Me”, and Lange singing David Bowie’s “Life on Mars”.

13 What Happens To Dr. Arden’s Experiments?

The mutants created in Dr. Arden’s horrific experiments are the stuff of nightmares, and they definitely present an interesting side story among the rest of the godawful happenings at Briarwood Manor in season two of American Horror Story, Asylum. Their issue, of course, is that they disappear off the radar without much of a peep.

Once turned into a mutant and taken to a hospital, Shelley, played by Chloë Sevigny as a homage to the many women unjustly committed to asylums throughout history, seems as if she may be able to lead the authorities toward Arden, but alas, Joseph Fiennes’ conflicted yet greedy Monsignor Timothy Howard takes her out instead. We don’t hear much about them afterward. What happened to the mutants?

12 The Messed-Up Historical Figures

Anne Frank was lobotomized by the evil Dr. Arden from Briarcliff Manor in season two, Asylum. Not only does this make zero sense, but it also really does a disservice to Anne Frank’s memory. There is a lot of artistic license taken with historical figures throughout American Horror Story, from Delphine Lalaurie to James March. Even characters used as backgrounds for new characters, like Nellie Bly’s inspiration for Lana Winters, often seems a bit much, especially when the representation is so loose.

The misrepresentation or grand re-representation of historical figures is nothing new.

Our own history books present complete falsehoods about everyone from Christopher Columbus to Paul Revere. Perhaps it’s just so glaring because we acknowledge that now, particularly during an age of “fake news” awareness.

11 The Opening Sequence And Spoilers Promise More Than We Get

One of the most exciting elements of a new season of American Horror Story is always the opening sequence and the slowly-revealed spoilers. Cast announcements and cool visuals trickle in until we finally get to see that first episode with its incredible casting graphics. The creepy opening sequence does much more than announce the cast: it revs us up like the announcer for a really scary joust about to take place.

The only problem is that it often goes downhill from there. While season 1 typically delivered, the casting graphics in seasons like Freak Show were actually scarier than the episodes themselves. That’s a real problem if we are supposed to be watching a horror program.

10 We Have No Idea What Happened To The Pig Boys

They were a successful execution of “the scary children” in a way that the little vampire entourage of the previous season just couldn’t seem to manage, so maybe that’s why Murphy and Falchuck decided to never let the “pig boys” of season six be seen again.

Aside from the fact that the boys could have made for some truly scary storytelling, the problem here isn’t just that they had no deeper involvement in the story than “check out these creepy kids” but that they don’t even have a resolution. Why the kids say, “Croatoan!” and why they drink pig milk remains unknown, and we may never know what happened to the charming little tykes.

9 No Consequences for the bad things the “good guys” do

As fans of American Horror Story, we sure do forgive a lot of murderers, don’t we? When someone bad finally goes good, all of their wicked deeds don’t seem to be as problematic. Even sweet Nan takes out Joan. Misty Day, otherwise a kind hippie, offs a couple of guys with alligators.

Were these warranted attacks? Maybe, but that doesn’t erase the fact that many characters end the lives of others and we pretty much turn a blind eye toward it like we wouldn’t if they occurred in real life. Of course, from people returning from the grave to mutant attacks near an asylum, there’s really not a lot in the show that applies to real life.

8 There’s Really No War Between The Coven And The Voodoo Witches

During season three, Coven, there’s a big build up about an oncoming war between the coven and the voodoo witches of the area. Both are led by powerful women, and who wasn’t excited to see Fiona, played by Jessica Lange, and Marie Laveau, played by Angela Bassett, go up against one another?

While there was plenty of tension and a zombie attack, it pretty much stopped there, especially after the witch hunters came to town.

AHS often builds up to something we’re expecting and completely abandon it for another plot instead. While we get that they want to keep us on our toes, broken promises do leave us unsatisfied and underwhelmed.

7 Zoe And Madison Gave Their Souls To Azaezel And It Never Came Up Again

When the bus full of frat boys who assaulted Madison wrecks, taking out all of the monsters on board on Madison’s whim, it’s satisfying. Even seeing Kyle taken out doesn’t bother some of us, given that we’ve already seen Evan Peters return from the grave before and wouldn’t be surprised if he returned. He may have stopped his “brothers” but he certainly tried to help them not get caught, making him complicit in the attack.

When Zoe and Madison decide to put “boy parts” together to resurrect Kyle as the perfect Frankenstein boyfriend, they sell their souls to Azaezel in order to do so, and yet it never comes up again. Given that both girls bite the dust during the show, shouldn’t that at least be an issue?

6 Roanoke’s Reality Show Inception

It was one of the most pointless plot points to ever be inserted into a season of American Horror Story. During season six, Roanoke, we’re treated to a reality show type of setting where re-enactors help us understand what happened to the Millers in “My Roanoke Nightmare”, an obvious play on so many other popular reality-based ghost hunting and experience shows. That’s an intriguing concept that works well for much of the season, but then we’re hit with reality-ception.

Getting all of the actors and people involved in actual events together for the blood moon event is one thing, but what about the disclaimer that nobody even survived the ordeal? If that’s true (which makes sense, since this is Roanoke), how did we get the footage in the first place?

5 There’s No Point To Scathach

Scathach, the mythical warrior from the Isle of Skye in Irish folklore, is an incredible character. It’s too bad we didn’t really get to know her in season six, Roanoke.

Lady Gaga’s Scathnach has a plethora of powers, is said to be the first Supreme and yet has no real point in the series.

The witch does a few nefarious things here and there, from purchasing souls to rendering people evil and insane, but in the grand scheme of things she has no real point except to serve as one of those random elements of horror woven in to just be spooky. Given the history of the traditional character, it would be amazing to see Murphy and Falchuck to use this as a tie-in for a more myth-heavy season.

4 People Are Constantly Offed Only To Be Brought Back

Character losses in the American Horror Story realm are pretty much like those in any comic book series: you don’t ever count them as permanent. Even when an entire series ends and you believe a character to be truly gone, they may return in another season! It’s definitely not a new tactic to have characters return from the grave; it’s a strategy used in everything from Dallas to Supernatural.

It makes us feel a little more jaded and a little less invested when tragedy does strike.

Oh, Fiona is sick? Oh, Ethel’s not going to make it? It’s too often meaningless. We want to feel affected, and we can’t help but worry a bit because we do love these characters, but deep down we’re always still wondering when they’ll return.

3 Twisty’s “Resolution” Is Basically A Deus Ex Machina

Season four’s big villain, Twisty the Clown, turned out to be much more Bozo than Pennywise. Sure, he was scary-looking, and he had the tragic backstory to boot, but Twisty’s crimes felt more garden variety scary movie than the monstrous panache we’d expect from AHS.

Twisty, played by John Carroll Lynch, even had a disappointing resolution as a character. Not only was he never really sorted out by a main character or a victim bent on revenge, but he was literally yanked out of the show to join Edward Mordrake’s nightmarish troupe, collecting the clown’s soul after hearing his tale of woe.

2 Misty Day Was Unjustly Lost

One of the characters fans most resonated with in season three, Coven, was Misty Day, played by the talented Lily Rabe. Misty’s character screamed Supreme, from her unique abilities to her lack of really caring about the position.

Misty was all about fairness, being kind to animals, and protecting the vulnerable, making her a fantastic character to root for.

Unfortunately she was also a red herring. Falchuck and Murphy offed her in such a terrible way in a Hell made up of her own personal vivisection nightmare, which made zero sense given her ability to bring things back to life so easily. Misty didn’t deserve her ending, but neither did Nan and many other characters.

1 Tate Is A School Shooter

Tate Langdon is one of the most romanticized characters in the history of AHS. The season 1 character is a doting friend, devoted boyfriend who would do anything for Violet, and speaks volumes of teen angst to many a smitten heart. It doesn’t hurt that Evan Peters, who plays Tate, is easy on the eyes as well. Is that why it’s so hard to remember that Langdon is such a deplorable character?

Tate is a school shooter. He took the lives of several classmates and should represent what we most despise and do not condone in this nation right now. He also assaulted Violet’s mother, Vivian, causing her to become pregnant with his Antichrist baby. How can anyone still crush on this guy knowing what harm he’s done?

What other problems with American Horror Story do fans overlook? Let us know in the comments!



Source link
2018-10-10 08:10:37 – Sara Schmidt

Goosebumps 2: Haunted Halloween Review – A Pretty Slappy Sequel

Goosebumps 2 lacks the charm and inventiveness of its predecessor, but still has a reasonable amount of spoopy entertainment value to offer.

R.L. Stine’s beloved 1990s children’s horror book series makes its way back to the big screen in Goosebumps 2: Haunted Halloween, a sequel to the live-action film adaptation of Stine’s novels that came out in 2015. While Jack Black starred as a fictional version of Stine in that movie, Sony didn’t even confirm the actor’s return for the followup until a few weeks before its release. Similarly, neither the director, writer, nor supporting cast of the (generally well-received) first Goosebumps film worked on the second installment. While Haunted Halloween certainly suffers for it, the sequel isn’t an entirely hollow continuation of the franchise either. Goosebumps 2 lacks the charm and inventiveness of its predecessor, but still has a reasonable amount of spoopy entertainment value to offer.

Goosebumps 2 picks up in the small town of Wardenclyffe, New York, as its residents prepare for the fast-approaching Halloween Night festivities. Meanwhile, in the Quinn household, high school senior Sarah (Madison Iseman) is trying to finish her college application and her younger brother Sonny (Jeremy Ray Taylor) is struggling with his science class project – a miniature replica of an experimental wireless transmission station in Wardenclyffe that was built and designed by Nikola Tesla, but never finished (aka. the Tesla Tower). The Quinns are joined by Sonny’s best friend Sam Carter (Caleel Harris), who is staying over at their house while his parents are away for the Halloween holiday.

After some prodding from Sam, Sonny agrees to take a break from his project and clear out an abandoned local house, as part of the duo’s ongoing efforts to launch a (successful) junk cleanup business. While there, however, the pair stumble upon an incomplete manuscript for a Goosebumps novel, unaware that the building was once owned by R.L. Stine himself. Not knowing any better, Sam and Sonny unlock the book and inadvertently unleash the Goosebumps villain Slappy the Dummy back into the real world. While the living ventriloquist dummy seems (sorta) friendly at first, it’s not long before he reveals his true evil plan, with only Sam, Sonny and Sarah to stand in his way.

If the original Goosebumps movie was a throwback to the popular family-friendly spooky adventures of the 1990s (think Hocus Pocus), then Haunted Halloween is closer to being the 2018 equivalent of a direct-to cable scary movie for kids from the ’90s – that is, noticeably cheaper and more generic, yet otherwise harmless and playful in its own right. The Goosebumps 2 script by Rob Lieber (Peter Rabbit) likewise carries over the first movie’s imaginative premise and conceit (e.g. Stine’s Goosebumps novel manuscripts are really enchanted objects which contain and prevent his “demons” from entering the real world) and includes references to its story, yet never really tries to build on its concepts, much less its themes and lore. Instead, Haunted Halloween offers helpful, if unchallenging, life lessons for kids and a serviceable narrative that doesn’t exactly push the envelope for the larger Goosebumps brand.

At the same time, Goosebumps 2 is perhaps more successful than its predecessor when it comes to being genuinely menacing and scary for the juice box crowd, yet still light-hearted enough to avoid traumatizing them (hence, “spoopy”). Much of the credit for that goes to director Ari Sandel (The DUFF), who does a commendable job of combining suspenseful and creepy storytelling with comedic moments here, much like Stine did so well in his original Goosebumps novels. Haunted Halloween, as indicated earlier, feels like a lower-budgeted affair than the first Goosebumps, yet Sandel and his creative team – including, DP Barry Peterson (Game Night) and production designer Rusty Smith (Get Out) – still manage to deliver a movie that’s a proper cut above a comparable TV film, in terms of overall craftsmanship. That also goes for the CGI and creature effects in the sequel’s first half (more on the second half later).

The actual setting of Haunted Halloween is mostly populated by stock types, be they the film’s young heroes or the local bullies that Sonny and Sam have to deal with (not to mention, Sarah’s dishonest would-be boyfriend). While their characters are fairly two-dimensional in the Goosebumps sequel, Harris, Iseman and Ray nevertheless have the same affable screen presence that’s allowed them to stand out in films and TV shows past and, thus, make their protagonists all the easier to root for. That also goes for the adult supporting players here, as Wendi McLendon-Covey (The Goldbergs) and Ken Jeong (Community) mostly channel their famous small screen personas as Sarah and Sonny’s adorkable mother Kathy and their eccentric neighbor Mr. Chu, respectively. As for Black as R.L. Stine: his own role in Goosebumps 2 is pretty superfluous, which is disappointing considering the energy that he brought to the proceedings as the first Goosebumps‘ co-protagonist (not to mention, his vocal performance as Slappy, which Black didn’t reprise in the sequel).

All in all, Haunted Halloween is a passable if derivative sequel – but not because the Goosebumps books themselves are incapable of sustaining multiple films. Rather, the problem is that the sequel recycles too much from the first movie and struggles to make creative use of the fresh elements (like the real-world Tesla Tower) that it brings into the mix here. It’s too bad, seeing as Goosebumps 2 had a wealth of different monsters and horror genres in Stine’s source novels to draw from, yet elected to continue simplifying the author’s mythology by making Slappy the big bad (again) and skimping on giving the other creatures much in the way of personality. As a result, the second half of the movie plays out as a watered down version of what happened in the original Goosebumps, albeit with lower production values and emotional impact.

Still, Goosebumps 2 should go over best with its young target demographic and provide them with enough silly scares and fun adventure to keep them engaged for its brisk runtime. Moreover, much like your average comic book movie these days, Haunted Halloween delivers its fair share of Goosebumps easter eggs and nods to the real Stine’s source material (right down to a Stan Lee-esque cameo from Stine himself), to further serve the property’s youngest fans. As for those who prefer their family-friendly fantasies with Jack Black starring front and center – The House with a Clock in Its Walls is still playing in theaters and ought to fulfill your own needs for some spoopy entertainment this Halloween season.

TRAILER

Goosebumps 2: Haunted Halloween begins playing in U.S. theaters on Thursday evening, October 11. It is 90 minutes long and is rated PG for scary creature action and images, some thematic elements, rude humor and language.

Let us know what you thought of the film in the comments section!



Source link
2018-10-10 01:10:58 – Sandy Schaefer

The Disney-Fox Deal Will Close January 2019

The Walt Disney Company and 21st Century Fox’s major merger is coming together faster than anticipated and will now officially be completed on January 1, 2019. Fox has plenty of success over the years through a variety of media outlets, but determined they could not properly compete in the movie and TV space. They looked to sell these branches of the company and quickly found Disney to be their preferred buyer. Comcast attempted to pull the deal out from under Disney’s reaches, but simply made them pay them pay $71 billion for Fox’s assets instead of the initial $54 billion bid.

There has been plenty of resistance to the deal because of the monopoly Disney continues to grow and the job losses that will come from it. From Disney’s perspective, they view the Fox acquisition as a great way to enhance their library of content prior to launching their own streaming service late next year. Throughout the process, it was anticipated that summer 2019 would be when the deal would close, but it’ll actually be much sooner.

Related: What Will Happen to Fox’s R-Rated Franchises Under Disney?

Variety shared the news that 21st Century Fox president Peter Rice told Fox employees the merger will be “ready to close” on January 1, 2019. This effectively means that 2018 will be the final year for this current look of Fox and moves up the timeline for the merger as a result.

Disney and Fox shareholders officially approved the terms of the merger back in July, less than a month after the Department of Justice approved the deal on their own. The studios have since been seeking approval in various countries around the world, while also figuring out the new hierarchy of Disney in a post-merger landscape. For Rice’s part, he’s joining Disney as a top TV executive. Disney recently made several of these types of moves official, while other executives have already found jobs elsewhere for when the merger closes.

The accelerated timetable of the deal comes after reports that a late 2018 finalization could be possible. They will miss this mark by a day it appears, as both studios now hope to become one at the turn of the calendar year. This is all barring some unforeseen mishap with the deal, but considering how well the deal has gone so far, it is difficult to imagine anything coming up now that would hinder them from completing the deal on Jan 1. After all, Rice told this to all of Fox’s current employees in a town-hall setting at their Los Angeles studio, so they must be confident that this date will stick. How quickly changes, such as cancellation of some projects or Marvel Studios’ plans for the X-Men, are made from then on remain to be seen. But, we do at least now know when the merger will be completed.

MORE: Marvel Has Time To Put X-Men Into Avengers 4 (But Probably Won’t)

Source: Variety



Source link
2018-10-10 01:10:31 – Cooper Hood

22 July Review: Paul Greengrass Delivers Another Intense Docudrama

Despite some general storytelling issues, Greengrass succeeds in delivering another well-crafted and intelligent docudrama-thriller with 22 July.

In-between his efforts on the Bourne movies, journalist-turned filmmaker Paul Greengrass has spent much of his career making docudrama-thrillers about real-world events, ranging from the September 11 terrorist attacks on the U.S. (United 93) to the hijacking of the Maersk Alabama in 2009 (Captain Phillips). While there’s an inherent risk of exploiting a real-world tragedy that comes with any such project, Greengrass has long been celebrated for his ability to dramatize terrible events on the big screen in a manner that’s intense, yet sensitive and ultimately insightful in its presentation. Thankfully, that remains the case with his Netflix Original 22 July, even if it doesn’t necessarily represent the writer/director at his finest. Despite some general storytelling issues, Greengrass succeeds in delivering another well-crafted and intelligent docudrama-thriller with 22 July.

22 July picks up on July 21, 2011 in Oslo, Norway, as Anders Behring Breivik (Anders Danielsen Lie) – a self-declared right wing extremist – prepares to carry out a terrorist attack on the city the next day. He begins his assault by setting off a bomb in a van near the main office of the then-current Norwegian Prime Minister Jens Stoltenberg (Ola G. Furuseth), killing eight people in the process. Breivik then proceeds to continue his attack by gunning down 69 members of a summer camp organized by the AUF – the youth division of the Norwegian Labour Party – on the island of Utøya, before he is ultimately apprehended by the police and taken into custody.

Among the members of the summer camp is one Viljar Hanssen (Jonas Strand Gravli), who manages to survive Breivik’s attack despite being shot multiple times and left permanently maimed. As Viljar struggles to recover both physically and psychologically from what happened to him (along with everyone else who survived the Utøya shootings and their loved ones), Breivik works with his chosen lawyer Geir Lippestad (Jon Øigarden) to mount a defense and use his trial as a platform to publicly announce his political agenda (which calls for the immediate deportation of all Muslims and heavier restrictions on immigration to Norway, among other things). When it becomes clear to Viljar what Breivik intends to do, he grows increasingly determined to continue his rehabilitation and testify against him in court for not only himself, but also every other person whose lives were affected by what took place on July 22.

Adapted from the book One of Us: The Story of a Massacre in Norway — and Its Aftermath by Åsne Seierstad, Greengrass’ script for 22 July has a very clear-cut three act structure – with the first act focused on the July 22 attack, the second part set during its immediate aftermath, and the final third centered on Breivik’s trial. The film is strongest during its first and third acts in particular, as those chapters (respectively) play to Greengrass’ strengths as a suspense-thriller storyteller and provide the emotional payoff to Viljar and, thus, Norway’s overarching journey of recovery and survival. It’s the second act where things start to drag and get a little muddled, especially as 22 July splits its focus between not only Viljar’s story thread, but also Lippestad and Breivik’s trial preparation, and the investigation into Stoltenberg’s administration and its failure to prevent a terrorist attack. While there’s nothing in the second act that feels inessential, 22 July struggles to divide its attention evenly between its three plotlines and the film’s pacing suffers for it.

On the whole, however, 22 July does a nice job covering a fair amount of narrative ground, even when taking its pretty substantial runtime into consideration. It helps that Greengrass (as he’s known now for doing, as a director) never fully lifts his foot off the gas pedal and keeps the film’s proceedings feeling on-edge throughout, even during its more purely dramatic portions. The filmmaker, working this time around with DP Pål Ulvik Rokseth (The Snowman) and Oscar-winning Argo editor William Goldenberg, uses essentially the same vérité cinematography and restless editing style that he has on his previous movies, in order to fully immerse viewers in the film’s setting and action. At the same time, Greengrass slows things down a bit here and, in turn, delivers a movie that’s more visually cohesive than some of his weaker efforts in the past (see the last Bourne sequel, in particular). This serves 22 July well, allowing it to effectively work as both a grounded drama and thriller.

Given the sheer amount of information that 22 July strives to cover, though, there’s not a lot of room for the film’s actors to really shine – not in the way that Barkhad Abdi and Tom Hanks did in Captain Phillips, for example. Even so, the 22 July cast is uniformly strong across the board, with Gravli especially doing an excellent job of portraying Viljar’s struggles with his physical injuries, PTSD, and the sheer amount of emotional baggage that he’s saddled with after barely managing to escape the attack on Utøya with his own life. Actors like Thorbjørn Harr and Isak Bakli Aglen are similarly moving in their smaller roles as members of Viljar’s family, as is Seda Witt as Lara Rashid, a young woman who starts to make a romantic connection with Viljar before both of their lives are shattered by Breivik’s attack. As for Breivik himself: Lie is quite compelling in the role and portrays the terrorist as a fully-developed person – one whose rationalization of his behavior makes him chilling and pathetic in equal measure.

As with his previous films, Greengrass uses 22 July as a means for delivering larger sociopolitical commentary about the state of things in the world, specifically where it concerns the rise of xenophobic and nationalist ideologies in various countries (the U.S. included). While his scripted dialogue can start to become a bit on the nose as its strives to get these points across (especially in the third act), Greengrass largely succeeds in allowing the story here to shine a light on these issues organically, without getting up on his figurative soapbox to drive the point home. If there’s a downside to the filmmaker’s approach, though, it’s that July 22 winds up handling its subject matter in a way that’s more engaging intellectually than emotionally and, thus, lacks the emotional resonance of Greengrass’ best work to date.

All things considered, however, Greengrass does a very good job of bringing the true story behind 22 July to cinematic life. The final result is a film that makes for an enlightening and otherwise respectful documentation of a horrifying real-world event, rather than one that comes off as exploitative or manipulative. 22 July is showing in select theaters now – in order to qualify for next year’s major film awards shows – and it certainly benefits from being seen on the big screen, but can still be appreciated just as much as a Netflix Original on your home TV. While it’s obviously not a light-hearted viewing experience, 22 July is very much worth checking out if you’ve enjoyed Greengrass’ previous non-Bourne efforts and/or would like to know more about Norway’s own infamous modern terrorist attack.

TRAILER

22 July is now available for streaming on Netflix and is playing in select U.S. theaters. It is 143 minutes long and is rated R for disturbing violence, graphic images, and language.

Let us know what you thought of the film in the comments section!



Source link
2018-10-10 01:10:22 – Sandy Schaefer

Daredevil Faces Kingpin & Bullseye In Stunning Season 3 Fan Poster

Matt Murdock finds himself in the crosshairs of Bullseye and Kingpin, thanks to a new fan poster for season 3 of Daredevil. The wait for new episodes has been a long one. The first series dropped on Netflix in early 2015 to critical acclaim. A second season rapidly followed, premiering less than a year later. The Devil of Hell’s Kitchen was last seen, however, forming The Defenders with Jessica Jones, Luke Cage, and Danny Rand. The series was met with a lukewarm reaction, with even star Charlie Cox criticizing the pace. Regardless, the team-up show ended on a huge cliffhanger, setting up promising things for Daredevil season 3.

Daredevil will pick up with the world still believing Matt and Daredevil to be dead. Secretly, however, he will still be recovering from his injuries at a nunnery. Wilson Fisk’s release from prison – despite still being in FBI custody – however, will draw him back from the shadows and into conflict with a nemesis that fans have been eager to see since the show was first announced. Bullseye was teased via an Easter egg in season 1 but has officially been confirmed as a season 3 villain. A recent teaser even offered a first look at Bullseye in action.

Related: Daredevil Season 3 Villain Bullseye’s Comic Book Origins

A new fan poster created and uploaded on Twitter by artist Rico Jr plays out this dual threat in stunning fashion. The image finds Daredevil, in his full red outfit, staring down the literal bullseye of the iconic villain’s trademark symbol. The shadowy silhouette of Wilson Fisk looms large behind him, no doubt referencing his being the architect of Matt Murdock’s upcoming suffering. Check out the full image below:

The image is a striking one that fans will surely want hanging on their walls. As well as perfectly summing up the dynamics that will be on display in season 3, it looks like something itself straight from a comic.

In terms of the comic, season 3 will apparently put the more mythological elements such as The Hand on the backburner. Instead, Daredevil will serve as more of a crime thriller. This feels like as wise a choice as the brushstrokes that went into crafting the above image. The Netflix/Marvel shows were, after all, originally billed as a gritty, street-level interpretation of superheroes. While such mystical elements are, to a degree, able to work on Iron Fist, it only served to complicate the tone in past seasons of Daredevil.

Although the Netflix heroes technically exist in the world of The Avengers and alien invasions, the shows are best when exploring more character-driven stories. Rather than tackling immortal ninjas, Daredevil is better served using the concept of superheroes to explore relatable themes and issues, much like Luke Cage and Jessica Jones before it.

More: Screen Rant’s Daredevil Season 3 Set Visit Report

Daredevil season 3 releases October 19 on Netflix.

Source: Rico Jr/Twitter





Source link
2018-10-10 01:10:09 – John Atkinson