Tag Archives: Paramount

How to Train Your Dragon on Double DVD & Blu-ray on October 15th!

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It’s one of the best reviewed and most enjoyed movies of 2010 – it’s How to Train Your Dragon and it’s coming to DVD and Blu-ray in packages that contain a brand new adventure – Legend of the Boneknapper Dragon, as wellas a single DVD release. Each comes with some fun extras.

Details follow the jump.

Continue reading How to Train Your Dragon on Double DVD & Blu-ray on October 15th!

MOVIE NEWS: New G.I. Joe Trailer!

The more I see of it, the more I’m strongly disliking the new G.I. Joe movie. I just can’t stand these stupid, cheesy looking Super Suits they are wearing. They look more ridiculous when they are going up against normal, non-suit wearing Cobra folks and still getting their butts handed to them. I do like the vehicles and it feels kind of right – if not for the suits, this could be really, really good. But somehow I doubt it.

MOVIE ESSAY: Back To The Future – Star Trek Returns By Scott (The Plant) Essman

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Star Trek is nothing if not a franchise—the most popular genre franchise in American pop cultural history. The original TV series ran from 1966 to 1969, encompassing 80 episodes and revolutionizing science fiction with its cult status on syndicated TV in the 1970s. Demand was so great for more Star Trek, it led to a series of 10 films and four additional spin-off TV series. But a strange thing happened to Star Trek in the new millennium. The coolest sci-fi franchise suddenly became uncool. In the era of The Matrix, Harry Potter, and Lord of the Rings, Star Trek seemed tired and old.

Enter J.J. Abrams, the creator of TV’s Felicity, Lost and Alias, and director of the third Mission: Impossible film. He was handed the Star Trek reins for a new self-titled film in the form of a prequel to the original series. With Abrams’ requisite amplitude and new imagining of the franchise, it seemed Star Trek was re-energized for a new generation. Youth and enthusiasm were injected into cast and crew, and Abrams’ high-octane style was the perfect antidote to the doldrums of an entity now over 40 years old.

Continue reading MOVIE ESSAY: Back To The Future – Star Trek Returns By Scott (The Plant) Essman

MOVIE NEWS: Ten New Star Trek Pictures!

Ah, we just got ten more tasty Star Trek movie images. I’m still not enthused about this movie, I don’t know why. But the buzz is strong with this one, everyone who has seen it has loved it. It looks like this is going to be a huge success in every way and I’m ready to jump on the bandwagon and get over this incredible, “meh” feeling that I have.      

 

Star Trek Images

STAR TREK

 

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MOVIE NEWS: New Star Trek Trailer Now on Apple

Movie News: Star Trek Gets New Trailer

This is one of those rare (sic) times when I want to complain about something. I’ve been part of the Paramount Star Trek Webmaster program for the last two years. The goal of the program is to provide a select group of webmasters exclusive access to all the news regarding the new Star Trek movie. Only problem is, those weasels at Paramount broke the entire concept of the private website by handing out exclusives to certain people. So AICN gets like a week window on all the Star Trek news before we’re even allowed to post anything, now Apple has the new 3rd trailer as an exclusive until Monday. This program is frustrating, it’s why I haven’t bothered to cover this movie. I’m not like most other journalist who feel a burning desire to have exclusives – it would be nice, I tend to go my own way with Eclipse which is why it’s rare that you’ll see the top news of the day posted here – unless I can put a spin on it. I figure why bother just regurgitating what is already on 100 different other sites especially when those sites can do it better and faster than I can. But it’s utter crap that they reached out to us because they obviously recognize our “importance,” but then to be treated so shabbily is ridiculous. I don’t even waste my time going to that site any longer. Why bother if everything that gets posted is embargoed until stupid AICN posts their stuff first? Anyhoo, enough of my mini-rant here’s a link to the new trailer http://www.apple.com/trailers/paramount/startrek/

Movie Review – Iron Man Flies, but doesn’t Quite Soar!

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After a year of speculation, spoilers, and marketing hype. The summer film season kicks off, not with a bang and not a whimper. One of my most anticipated films of 2008 – Iron Man is finally here in all it’s technicolor glory!  I liked this movie a lot, technically it’s brilliant, acting is spot on, but it was missing something that I couldn’t put my finger on what.  From the moment this movie was announced every decision by Director Jon Favreau has been spot on. Casting  Robert Downey Jr. as Tony Stark was truly inspired. This film rests squarely on Downey’s shoulders and he takes the ball and scores a touchdown.  He was born to play this part. He’s perfectly sarcastic, vapid, yet brilliant and roguish. Could not have been happier with his performance.  In the Pantheon of Marvel Characters, Iron Man was always a major player in the Marvel Universe, but he’s never been a fan favorite and recently Marvel has turned Tony into a completely unlikable, know it all dick.  The movie version of Tony is more circa 80s Stark – pre-alcoholism.

When I first watched the trailer on my computer, it was the first time where I had concerns about this film. I thought it looked way too fake. But within the context of the film, everything works perfectly. Never once do you not believe that this suit is real. Favreau spends so much time showing the construction of this armor and the entire testing process that when we finally see him take off you buy into it. Stan Winston did an incredible job designing the Mark III Armor. It’s straight out of the comic book and is exactly how I always imagined Iron Man’s Armor in a live action film to look like. It’s a brilliant mix of CGI and practical SFX. But here’s my problem with the film, I kept trying to force a connection to it and wondering why I’m not LOVING this movie. I liked it a hell of a lot but didn’t LOVE it.  I think it comes down to the lack of real tension. Everything felt slightly plastic and a little too technical. With no real peril or villains.

When Stark does his first bit of Super-Hero work it’s against some nameless terrorist group. That is not clearly defined or established enough to make us care. All of the violence is done off camera as well. This leads to several weird edit moments where Iron Man is blowing up bad guys left and right, we see the repulser blasts, stuff getting blown up, but we never really see the bad guys get what’s coming to them, it’s all done off camera. I’m not one who needs to see blood and guts, but in a film like this it lacks an edge that it sorely needs.  It’s interesting the Favreau and his writers decided to go this route instead of using Iron-Man’s signature nemesis The Mandarin. He clearly wanted to focus all the attention on telling us who Tony Stark was before worrying about the villains. Which is where most Super Hero films falter.  Now that we have a clear idea who Stark is, Favreau can use the next film to give us Mandarin.  It’s funny, as an avid Iron-Man fan from back in the day, I can’t name any of Iron’s enemies, he doesn’t have a very good Rogues Gallery. Who would be good in this movie? Stiltman? Stingray?

The cast was perfect, Terrence Howard as Jim Rhodes was done really well and Tony’s long suffering secretary Pepper Potts (Gwyneth Paltrow) was nicely done. Jeff Bridges was barely recognizable as (Obadiah Stane / Iron Monger).  The movie’s only down moment came in final fight between Iron Man and Iron Monger was disappointing at best. Turned into a really lame Transformers rip-off.  Iron-Man is a great kick off to a front loaded Summer Blockbuster season and this is a fabulous start to the Iron-Man franchise. Bring on The Mandarin.

Final Grade A-

EM Review by
Michelle Alexandria
Originally Posted 5.2.08

Iron Man: Marvel’s Right Wing Superhero Soars!

Battle-Scarred MK III

Tony Stark [Robert Downey Jr.] is a hedonistic billionaire weapons manufacturer until a trip to Afghanistan for a weapons demonstration ends with him in the hands of terrorists. He builds himself a suit of iron armor to escape and goes on to put together a more refined version to enable him to save the people who have been put in harm’s way by his company’s weapons.

Iron Man is about a lot of things: a modern knight in shining armor; crazed ambition; superheroics; even innovative CGI [check out Stark manipulating CG plans as if they were the real thing]. Oddly enough, despite its political ramifications and good old-fashioned superheroic fun, in the end, Iron Man is about a guy who goes through a kind of reverse mid-life crisis. The hedonistic, irresponsible Stark metamorphoses into a more – dare I say – mature adult by deciding to kill his company’s weapons making business in favor of some thing more planet friendly.

Downey isn’t working in a vacuum, either. It’s been a while since Gwyneth Paltrow has glowed so brightly on the big screen – here playing Stark’s right-hand person with considerable aplomb [watching her keep Stark on his toes is a delight]. Jeff Bridges makes for an affably deceptive villain and Terrence Howard makes his small role as Stark’s best friend shine.

While the action scenes aren’t as accomplished as something by Michael Bay, they come off better because director Jon Favreau understands that it’s the characters that make everything else in the film work. He keeps the pace high enough to prevent lessening of interest and knows how to make the film’s effects serve the story. This is a film with surprising wit and genuine intelligence.

Final Grade: A-

Cloverfield Stomps Onto DVD!

Liberty's Head

The innovative Cloverfield, which brought a whole new, personal style to monster movies, fares even better on DVD than it did in the theater. That’s because the film was shot as if by a guy who happened to have a camcorder with him when the monster appeared in Manhattan. Of course, even on the small screen, Cloverfield remains a truly intense experience, with its visual references to 9/11, its monster lice, and its very “old gods” looking beastie.

Cloverfield is unique as monster movies go in that it takes much more time to establish its characters than the average genre effort. This is because we have to know these people before we are plunged into the action with them. Since the only view of the action we get is from the point of view of the guy with the camera, we only catch glimpses of the monster – but are right there when one character gets mauled by one of the lice. The attempt to rescue someone we’ve seen only briefly on a bit of recording and for a few minutes at a party only makes sense if we know these people.

Overall, Cloverfield is a pretty special achievement in the monster movie genre, with its almost constant intensity and the intimacy of being right there with “The Man on the Street” as it were. The FX are amazing – and although we never quite see the whole monster at any one time, we see enough bits to be able to figure out its appearance.

Features include: Audio Commentary with Director Matt Reeves; Deleted Scenes; Document 01.18.08: The Making of Cloverfield; Cloverfield Visual effects; I Saw IT! It’s Huge! It’s Alive!; Clover Fun; Deleted Scenes; Alternate Endings, and www.cloverfieldfiles.com.

Grade: Cloverfield – A+

Grade: Features – A+

Final Grade: A+

Indiana Jones Trailer Hits Friday!

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I haven’t done much coverage of the upcoming Indiana Jones film but here’s some interesting news, the teaser trailer debuts in theaters this weekend. Paramount Pictures and Lucasfilm Ltd. announced today that the first teaser trailer for the highly anticipated Indiana Jones adventure “Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull,” directed by Steven Spielberg and starring Harrison Ford in the title role, will debut in theaters across the globe on February 14, 2008.  The trailer will air exclusively on ABC’s “Good Morning America” that morning between 8 a.m. and 9 a.m.  Immediately thereafter, the footage will be available at the film’s official site IndianaJones.com, Yahoo! Movies and in motion picture theaters.

On May 22, Indiana Jones is back in a new globe-trotting adventure, "Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull."  Directed by Steven Spielberg and starring Harrison Ford as Indy, "Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull" is a Lucasfilm Ltd. Production.  The movie features an outstanding cast, including Oscar® winner Cate Blanchett, Karen Allen, Ray Winstone, John Hurt, Oscar® winner Jim Broadbent and Shia LaBeouf.  Frank Marshall is the film’s producer.  George Lucas and Kathleen Kennedy are the executive producers. The screenplay is by David Koepp from a story by George Lucas and Jeff Nathanson.  It’s pretty interesting and ironic that Shia, David and Jeff Nathanson have all talked exclusively with Eclipse in the past and will be featured in the upcoming EM Interview book.