Tag Archives: Harrison Ford

The Young Han Solo Chronicles?

"I once caught a Wamprat THIS BIG!"

“I once caught a Wamprat THIS BIG!”

Today’s piping-hot “Star Wars” rumour?  Lucasfilm are developing a young Han Solo movie.  And a Boba Fett flick.  Zoinks!

But, as ever with these things, Entertainment Weekly’s story on the matter is quick to assert that these additional “Star Wars” movies – which are being made in addition to the J.J. Abrams‘ spearheaded “Episode VII” – are in an embryonic state and that nothing is set in carbonite, yet.

That proviso noted, would you want to be the actor tasked with embodying Harrison Ford‘s devil-may-care intergalactic bounder as a younger man and living up to the burden of attention that accepting such a role might bring?  I’m pretty sure I would run a couple thousand parsecs from it and I suspect that you would too.

Early casting around on the internet has the likes of Ryan Gosling and Bradley Cooper being proposed for the role on various sites, and as good as they are, they’re not exactly in the right age range for the part.  Physically, at least, Garrett Hedlund has some of the quality of a young Ford – but I’ve not seen in anything which suggests that he has the comedic lightness of touch to embody the Corellian scoundrel fully.

As I said – wouldn’t want to be that actor…

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Whatever happened to action movies?

Image

An interesting and thought-provoking piece today over at about the unbearable heft of the latter-day action movie – as you may reasonably fear, it set me thinking…

The premise of Simon Brew’s feature is that contemporary action movies fail because they have concerns which are impossible to relate to – who, amongst us, will ever be called upon to duke it out with our giant robot buddies and face off against meaner, bigger robots in a tumultuous struggle to save our very planet?

There can be no inherent suspense or drama in a premise like that because we can’t relate to it – we can only behold it, with mouths wide and brains in idle, as one would take in a theme park ride.  As an audience, we’re hostages to which ever kitchen sinks the film maker chooses to lob at us (in 3D!).

It wasn’t always this way.

A man of thought and action in nice Tweed - that's what's missing nowadays...

Harrison Ford used to own the summer movie-going season by playing broadly plausible, fallible and identifiable action heroes who were at least as gifted with thought as talented with fists.   Indiana Jones, Jack Ryan, Dr Richard Kimble – not an indestructible, CG-assisted, weightless sketch drawing of a character amongst them.  If you wanted a moderately grumpy voice of reason who could kick your ass and fix your roof, Ford was your man.

I love a superhero movie as much as the next nerd but I have to confess that the last couple of decades have robbed the honest-to-goodness action movie of a lot of its impact – why would you pay your cash to see an actor in their thirties foil conspiracy and bust crooked cops when you can have a quippy stud in a unitard fling cars and thunderbolts at your barely believing noggin (in IMAX!)?

This isn’t a thinly veiled pitch for a return to the glory days of Shane Black penned, acerbic crime thrillers (Hell, even the Black-meister’s now writing and directing the third Iron Man for Marvel, which actually seems like a good fit), as that era had more than it’s fair share of unwatchable crap.  But it would be nice to balance out the CG juggernauts with smaller scale action fare which has a more human-sized premise to induce mayhem and reduce metropolitan property values for our entertainment.

Perhaps our collective world view is now so jaded that a nineties action movie can’t seem like anything but a quaint remainder of when film directors really had to blow things up with practical explosions as opposed to giving Chip, the ILM work experience guy a plate and letting him go nuts with his PC.  I’d like to think not – but a glance at this summer’s putative blockbusters-in-waiting is short on old school action heroes and big on funny book follies.

You’ve got your Jeremy Renner rebooted “Bourne” spin-off, soon-come Superman Henry Cavill in “Bourne”-like The Cold Light of Day and the unapologetically retro sequel to old school icon Sly Stallone‘s “The Expendables” to look forward to if you prefer to have your asses kicked by veterans rather than n00bs, but the real-world action is thin on the ground this year.

I’ll be honest with you – I love my Sci-Fi, horror and fantasy, but I miss the 80’s and 90’s lunk heads, heroes from a time when all you really needed to make it big in Hollywood was a dubious mullet, noxious reactionary politics and a million-dollar grin.

"Go on, mention 'Tooth Fairy' one more time..."

My point, and I think I do have one, is this – why the hell isn’t Dwayne Johnson doing this kind of stuff and being the biggest movie star in the world?

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“Ender’s Game” movie happening, whether you like it or not…

Don't let Keith Vaz get his paws on this book...

Empire is reporting that the long-gestating adaptation of Orson Scott Card’s “Enders Game” novel might be getting some serious star power.

Harrison Ford starry enough for you?

The film has been in proverbial development hell for a good few years now – I believe that I recall hearing talk of an adaptation back when Card’s novelization of James Cameron’s “The Abyss” was published back in 1989 – but technology seems to have caught up with the novel’s themes and can now do Card’s future world justice.

Ignoring some of Card’s predictably Conservative politics and focussing instead on the film to come – which already has a release date in March 2013 – what can we expect of this tale of small children being trained to wage war against an alien menace?

Well, the fact that Gavin Hood is directing it may give some pause for thought.  He last brought you the not especially well thought of “X Men Origins: Wolverine”.  I know, not a good outing but not entirely his fault – that film was anecdotally micro-managed to the point of absurdity (repainting bits of the set to make them brighter, anyone?) and was probably not the movie that anyone – fans or creative folks – wanted to make.  His other work – which includes “Tsotsi” and “Rendition” is better and more representative of him.

It’s a brave man who takes on a movie project like this – Card is not celebrated for his ability to keep himself to himself and the violence in the book would make this an untenable film unless it was significantly toned down – it’s a movie focussing on genocide, with predominantly child actors beating the crap out of each other in a hellish military school.  We’re talking R-rating territory here.

I’ve seen more unlikely pitches for movies, but none that were on quite this scale.  Time will tell, I suppose.

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Quick Geek News – Friday 21 October 2011

It’s far too early in the morning (5:51AM, to be precise) to write anything coherent – time for some quick geek news, wouldn’t you say?

All very well - can we have a "Gaunt's Ghosts" movie now, please?

Den of Geek reports that a fourth movie in the “Starship Troopers” universe is on the way.  Rather than going the live action route with this latest direct-to-video offering, the fourth film is going the full CG animation route, akin to the “Roughnecks” cg animated series from the late nineties.

The film is set to focus on Neil Patrick Harris’ scary nazi psychic Carl Jenkins, whose disappearance whilst on a mission spurs the action – I’m pondering whether this means that the project is aimed at an older audience than the original animated series was, as I’m not sure that alien bug mind-reading fascist Übermensch are the stuff of family fun.

Unless your family is different to mine, of course.

This fourth installment is being directed by anime veteran Shinji Aramaki, who recently directed “The Package” in the “Halo Legends” collection.

I’m a bit late to the party on this one, but the insanity is priceless – Harrison Ford has filmed a Japanese commercial for the forthcoming release of Sony and Naughty Dog’s upcoming video game “Uncharted 3”.  Topless Robot has you covered.

 

Play these games. Worth buying a PS3 for. Trust me.

Harrison Ford.  “Uncharted 3”.  There’s some kind of passing the torch thing going on, but I’m not sure how to process it.

In ‘Why is this happening?’ news, Bryan Singer’s long-gestating “Battlestar Galactica” film is back on the agenda – he intends to be moving forward with it after finishing his “Jack & The Beanstalk” movie.

It probably won't look like this.

This isn’t a ‘Johnny-come-Lately’ effort – Singer was actively developing a “Battlestar” reboot before the celebrated Ron Moore re-boot – but it does seem a little odd.  It’s a bit like developing a modern-day “Sherlock Holmes” tv series after, say, a successful British re-invention of the premise and characters…

Finally, if you’re looking forward, like me, to being traumatised by David Fincher’s upcoming remake of “The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo”, you might be interested in this piece, unearthed by SlashFilm – Super 8-style footage of the bridge accident from the film.

Keep it nerdy, peeps…

 

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