May 2012

News and Notes

by Alan Rapp on May 31, 2012

in Film News & Trailers

news-iron-patriot-armorThe Superficial has leaked pics from the set of Iron Man 3 showing us that, yes indeed, the Iron Patriot armor will be making an appearance in the next film. No word on yet on what character will be wearing the suit in the film (as Sony still owns the movie rights to Norman Osborn)

Screenrant is reporting that a theatrical version of Fraggle Rock has new life now that Rango co-writer James Ward Bykrit and Alex Manugian have signed on to write a new script

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Batman: The Dark Knight #9

by Alan Rapp on May 31, 2012

in Comics

batman-the-dark-knight-new-52-9-coverI wasn’t a fan of this Bat-tile before the New 52 reboot and I’ve given the new volume a pretty wide berth. However, the latest issue had three points of interest to make me pick it up.

First, Judd Winick was guest-writing and although his his latest work hasn’t been his best, he’s produced good stories in the past. Two, the cover showcased Red Robin on the cover (who only appears in one panel, isn’t connected to the story at all, and doesn’t utter a word). Three, it was a Night of the Owls crossover.

The problem with this issue, as has been the trouble with almost all of the Night of the Owls crossovers, is that once again the focus here is on a villain, another Talon, instead of the comic’s main character. This issue is all about Alton Carver, the Talon sent to kill Lincoln March, and his history with the Court of Owls and Batman.

The focus is all wrong, the character teased on the cover isn’t here (I was looking forward to a Bruce/Tim team-up), and there’s just not enough here to justify picking up unless you simply want to grab all of the Night of the Owls issues. Hit-and-Miss.

[DC, $2.99]

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To help promote their upcoming movie Snow White and the Huntsman, based on the fairy tale by the Brothers Grimm, Kristen Stewart and Charlize Theron each sat down for an interview with Elvis Mitchell as well as pose for a photoshoot (which you’ll find pics of inside). In the interview Stewart discusses working with female directors, her first role in The Safety of Objects, how Twilight helped her understand the character of Snow White, and her roles in On the Road, The Runaways, and Welcome to the Rileys. Theron talks about her fear of live performance, her love of playing characters who are hard to love, working with Tom Hanks on That Thing You Do!, and her roles in Monster and Young Adult.

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The Flash #9

by Alan Rapp on May 30, 2012

in Comics

the-flash-new-52-9-coverWriter and artist Francis Manapul (along with co-writer Brian Buccellato) gives us the Flash vs. Gorilla Grodd, Round One. Honestly, given the early teases we’d seen of the New 52 versions of Grodd and Gorilla City this was better than I expected. I’m not sure I like the change from Gorilla City from an advanced scientific race of apes into a more magical religious group but this certainly wasn’t the total disaster which I feared.

The Flash shows up in Gorilla City at a loss as to how he arrived there and who he is and learns from a group of elder Gorillas that the secret tribe worship the Lightning (the Speed Force) and the prophesied appearance of the Runner (the Flash). Although awkward in places, the comic picks up after the Flash regains his memory and puts down Grodd’s rule and plans of world conquest.

The issue has several important small plotlines including Iris still stuck in limbo, the Pied Piper deciding to come out of retirement when Central City is left without a hero, Dr. Elias mounting a protest against the scarlet speedster, and a teaser for the introduction of another of the Flash’s Rogues next month – the Weather Wizard.

[DC, $2.99]

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Rampart

by Alan Rapp on May 30, 2012

in DVD Reviews 

  • Title: Rampart
  • IMDB: link

RampartWoody Harrelson stars as David Douglas Brown, a crooked cop forced to face up to his choices in the midst of the 1999 Rampart Scandal in which more than 70 Los Angeles police officers were implicated in the most widespread case of police misconduct in history.

The story is presented in the form of a character study of “Date Rape” Dave, a womanizing, bigoted bully who has daughters (Brie LarsonSammy Boyarsky) from a pair of sisters (Cynthia NixonAnne Heche) and is facing charges of police brutality and viciously beating a man who crashed into his police car on camera.

In need of help Dave recruits a retired cop (Ned Beatty) and old friend of his father’s who puts him onto a heist that only gets him in further trouble with the LAPD. His involvement also puts an investigator (Ice Cube) from the District Attorney’s office on his case.

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Batman Incorporated #1

by Alan Rapp on May 30, 2012

in Comics

batman-incorporated-new-52-1-coverPlease, for the love of God, would somebody at DC stop letting Grant Morrison write Batman stories. Morrison resurects several of his Batman Incorporated supporting players and throws them haphazardly in the New 52 for the new (but not really improved) Batman Incorporated.

The issue starts with a group in animal masks mutilating livestock to lure Batman and Robin into the crosshairs of the assassin known as Goatboy. Sigh. Goatboy, it seems, has decided to cash in on the hit Leviathan has laid on young Damian.

Morrison gives us the Dead Heroes Club (Batwing, El Gaucho, The Hood, Wingman, and Halo) almost all of whom I didn’t even know existed in the New 52 before now. He also gives us Dark Knight Returns mutants (for no more reason than he gave us Goatboy), and one hell of a bullshit ending even an newbie first-time comic book reader could call. Seriously, I can’t believe Morrison went for such an obvious sleight of hand in the first issue of a new Bat-title where we know damn well nothing bad is going to happen to the Dynamic Duo.

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Captain America #12

by Alan Rapp on May 29, 2012

in Comics

captain-america-12-coverAs S.H.I.E.L.D. doctors try to help Diamondback, who has slipped into a coma after the beatdown from the new Scourge, Captain America and Dum Dum Dugan set out to get a little revenge by attacking an underground HYDRA base and learning the secret of the S.H.I.E.L.D. leak.

We get a couple of revelations here including Sharon Carter‘s discovery of the leak within S.H.I.E.D. to be a brainwashed Henry Gyrich as well as a look at the face of the man wearing the new Scourge costume – Dennis Dunphy.

Although the inclusion of Gyrich and Dunphy does nothing to help sell me on the story, there’s certainly enough here to pick this one up including some good inner monologue from Cap during his attack on the HYDRA base and the art by Patrick Zircher whose action sequences really pop. Worth a look.

[Marvel, $3.99]

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Coriolanus

by Alan Rapp on May 29, 2012

in DVD Reviews 

  • Title: Coriolanus
  • IMDB: link

coriolanus-posterFor his directorial debut Ralph Fiennes chooses a modern adaptation of William Shakespeare‘s Coriolanus. To help, Fiennes enlisted the help of screenwriter John Logan (Hugo, The Last Samuari, Sweeney Todd, Rango, Gladiator). It’s an ambitious project to be sure but despite some solid performances the film hits some snags when adapting the story to modern day.

Fiennes stars as Caius Marcius Coriolanus, a legendary general of Rome who cares little for politics, and far less for the troubles of the common man. Despite his disinterest he agrees to run for the Senate to please his mother (Vanessa Redgrave). This action, far more than any risk ever taken on the battlefield, will prove to be his undoing.

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Top Ten Summer 2012 Preview

by Alan Rapp on May 29, 2012

in Top Tens & Lists

It’s going to be hard for any film this summer to meet the bar The Avengers set this Spring. In Hollywood terms Memorial Day has always been (more or less) the start of the summer movie season. So what do they have in store for us this year? A couple more super-hero flicks, new films by director Wes Anderson and Woody Allen, time travel, a fictional character literally brought to life, and the end of the world. Not all of these look to be box office winners, but with all do respect to that Schwarzenegger remake (which didn’t make my list), these are your best bets at finding some real movie magic this summer.

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News and Notes

by Alan Rapp on May 28, 2012

in Entertainment News 

BAFTA held it’s Television Awards over the weekend whose winners included Dominic West, Monica Dolan & Emily Watson for Appropriate Adult and Andrew Scott for Sherlock

The Independent reports that despite Harrison Ford‘s reluctance to return to the role director Ridley Scott definitely wants the actor on-board for the sequel to Blade Runner which will center around a female protagonist

The Vulture is reporting that writer/director Sean Durkin (Martha Marcy May Marlene) wants to adapt The Exorcist as a ten-episode television mini-series

Variety is reporting Austrian writer/director Michael Haneke‘s drama Amour won the coveted Palme d’Or at the 65th annual Cannes Film Festival on Sunday night

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