Tag Archives: Idris Elba

“Pacific Rim” viral ad and mech blueprints online

Giant. Fracking, Robots.

Deliciously bonkers fantasy auteur Guillermo Del Toro‘s giant Mechs versus alien monsters pic, Pacific Rim won’t be with us until next summer but the advance marketing has begun.

Only attractive people get to ride these rigs…

Ahead of the first proper trailer, scheduled to hit in front of “The Hobbit” in a matter of days, comes a blitz of Mech blueprints for the giant Jaeger robots defending us from certain annihilation at the tendrils and claws of the alien menace laying siege to Earth.  There’s also a fancy-schmancy faux-news clip available to look at – if you like quick cuts and disorienting, blink-and-you’ll-miss-them images, go ahead and fill your boots.

Loving the scale in the blueprint above – that’s a wee human pilot standing at the foot of his/her ride.  Wonder what kind of fuel efficiency those things get?

Advertisements

Leave a comment

Filed under Films, Geekery, Movie Trailer

Giant Fracking Robots – first “Pacific Rim” poster online

Image via NeoGaf.com

Yes, the Summer movies of 2012 haven’t finished unspooling yet – we still have “The Dark Knight Rises“, “The Bourne Legacy“, “The Expendables 2” and, if the weather gets warm enough and I really need some air conditioning in a hurry, the “Total Recall” remake to look forward to – but it’s never too early to look forward to next summer.

To the likes of “Iron Man 3”, “Star Trek 2”, the next “Fast & Furious” and Superman reboot, “Man of Steel“, many a discerning nerd will be anxious to see Guillermo Del Toro‘s deeply artistic and emotionally resonant take on the Giant, Ass-Kicking Mech Robots genre, “Pacific Rim”.

Idris Elba, looking absolutely bad ass in “Pacific Rim”. Not that this is news, frankly…

I’m hoping for this to give one of the best living film makers out there a huge platform and the blockbuster hit which he really deserves – if the notion of the director of “Pan’s Labyrinth” and “Hellboy” doing a massive summer sci-fi pic and bringing his unique level of strange and beautiful vision to it isn’t exciting on several levels to you, there may be no hope for you.

 

 

1 Comment

Filed under Films, Geekery

Prometheus Shrugged, and you will, too.

Image

Quick version?  Ridley Scott‘s return to the Alien mythos is a mess.  I can’t think of a bigger disappointment that I’ve had at the cinema in years.

“Prometheus” isn’t a total wash-out but as a companion piece to Scott’s series-opening movie in 1979, it so completely fails to live up that movie’s enduring excellence that its existence can be owed mostly to Fox wanting a sci-fi summer blockbuster and Scott feeling that it was time to dip his toes back into xenomorphic murky waters.

The good parts?  Production design is amazing – the clean sleekness of the “Prometheus” ship is the reverse of the lived-in, grotty, ‘haulage vessel-in-space’ environment’ created by Scott and his craftsmen in the first movie but is no less convincing and eye-catching.  Similarly, the alien structures echo the past but somehow manage to be new and different enough to convince you that you’re not just checking out Giger off-cuts from 1979.

Effects are excellent for the most part – there’s a particular make-up job which I had some reservations about – and the sound mixing is amongst the best that I’ve heard in a theatre since, ooh, “Black Hawk Down“.  Yeah, Scott and his sound team know how to make your ears sit up and pay attention.

The acting’s pretty decent – with a single caveat.  Noomi Rapace‘s heroine, Dr Elizabeth Shaw is an excellent character study to join Sigourney Weaver‘s iconic Warrant Officer Ellen Ripley.  She’s a person of faith thrown into a conundrum which challenges her assumptions and sends her on a ride through a very demanding, quite personal Hell.  Rapace is captivating in every thing that I’ve seen her in, but she’s perhaps the single-best thing about this opening visit to the “Alien” universe.

Similarly, Idris Elba convinces as stoic ship captain Janek, as is Charlize Theron, who plays the traditional role of buttoned-up corporate weasel, Vickers and gets to add colours and tones of underpinning decency and humanity which previous emissaries of the Weyland company haven’t been allowed to show.  Michael Fassbender is also superb as the creepy, box-fresh, Peter O’ Toole channelling android, David.

On the debit side, Logan Marshall-Green didn’t do anything for me – his scientist character doesn’t really register next to Rapace and brought to mind the dreaded Matthew McConaghey during his frequent moments of shirtless pouting.  He may be a very fine actor in different material – but in this, he’s a set of abs with no discernible personality to distinguish himself from A.N. Other young male actor.

The biggest problem with the film is the screenplay – it just doesn’t have a very interesting story until the proverbial last gasp of the film.  The core theme – were we created by a divine being or by extra-terrestrial engineers engaging in inter-stellar DNA experiments? – isn’t dealt with particularly well and the exploratory tone of the first half of the film soon gets jettisoned in favour of the body horror and revulsion at human physical decay which we encounter in a lot of the series.

When the gloop starts to hit the screen my interest waned, particularly as the gore and grue isn’t as inventive or well-realised as it was in “Alien”.  There’s one particular scene – I’ll say the words ‘non-elective surgery’ and leave it at that – which was a trial to sit through.  In some ways, it may become the classic scene of this film but I found it messy and gross, if adhering closely to some of the memorable moments of the “Alien” sequence.

The ending is…okay, actually.  It promises a much more interesting entry in the series than this film delivers.  I’d rather that we skipped this movie entirely and cut-and-pasted the best bits of this film into a pre-credit sequence for that hypothetical sequel.

Oh, Ridley, what are we to say of this film.  If you’re an “Alien” fan, you would be daft to miss it, particularly on the big screen.  If the series means nothing to you, there’s every chance that you might see this film and wonder what all the fan boys have been wittering on about all these years.

5 Comments

Filed under Films, Geekery, Spoiled!

“Prometheus” reviews erupting from critic’s chests. Or something like that.

Yep, that looks a bit familiar…

The Guardian’s Peter Bradshaw has had his say.  And various French critics – via the shimmering space voodoo of Google Translate – have spoken forth, too.

The initial word on Ridley Scott‘s quasi-return to the “Alien” universe, “Prometheus”,  seems to be distinctly divergent, varying between mixed acceptance, exultant delight and grumpy disillusion.   Which is as it should be, surely?  I find myself never quite trusting films which arrive with uniform critical assent – no film can possibly appeal to all people, so why should we expect to see reviews which follow the same tone and cite identical positive factors and then expect those views to offer us an accurate picture of what we’re going to see?

Can a sci-fi hater treat this film fairly?  Should we listen to the views of paid-up members of the Ridley Scott fan club (I think I’m still entertainments secretary of that happy group)?  Or should we just be happy with the fact that Scott’s back in the SF zone and resolutely doing his own thing?

Leave a comment

Filed under Films, Geekery

New “Prometheus” international trailer is spoileriffic!

Image

Don’t watch the new international (i.e. British) trailer for Ridley Scott‘sPrometheus“.

If you don’t want things spoiled before it’s June release, if you want to go in cold, if you don’t want certain plot aspects which you might have had a hunch about pretty much confirmed, be sure to avoid the trailer that I’ve linked to above – it’s got so much awesome sauce inside that it could melt your nerdy brain as much as it did for me.

No explicit statements of content but some pretty tangy hints that the sufficiently motivated could draw some conclusions from.

Just so as you know.

Leave a comment

Filed under Films, Movie Trailer, Spoiled!

“Prometheus” – new trailer, new terror, new Idris Elba accent.

I think it’s fair to say that we have a winner.

This week we’ve seen a teaser for the trailer, an IMAX teaser and yesterday we finally got a round of Q & A promo for Ridley Scott’s eagerly anticipated “Prometheus” which culminated in the release of a frankly awesome trailer.

Expertly crafted shocks, classical allusions (the title, friends, may yet reveal all) and an ominous sense that all is really not going to end well pervade in these two and a half minutes.  Of course, the finished film may very well present us with a lot of not very much, but with Scott at the helm it’s difficult to see how this innately promising source material, the legacy of the “Alien” series and the quality of the cast will end up resulting in anything other than a supremely compelling movie.

I’ve grabbed some stuff from the trailer – but I hope you’ll agree that it’s pretty non-spoiler fare (the trailer is a veritable overgrown garden of speculation-inducing imagery, so I’ll advise you to proceed with caution if you really don’t want to know/see anything in advance).

 

“Prometheus” opens in the UK on 1st June, in the US on 8th June and international dates are here.

 

Leave a comment

Filed under Films, Geekery, Movie Trailer, Spoiled!

Trailered: “Ghost Rider 2: Spirit of Vengeance”

Hands up – who wanted a second “Ghost Rider” film?

Insert your favourite, Raimi-esque, 'Farewell to Arms' gag here.

If you answered “Nicolas Cage’s accountant”, then full points for snarking.  Being a contrary old sort, I have to say that I actually quite liked the first one, imperfect and absurd as it was – Nicolas Cage and Eva Mendes were childhood sweeties?   Okie Dokie – that makes a whole bunch of sense…

The sequel opens in February and has been directed by Taylor and Neveldine, the deranged hacks who previously brought you the “Crank” series and the odious, half-witted, time-wasting pox on celluloid which was Gerard Butler vehicle, “Gamer” (a film made by people whose revelatory take on games is to mutter something about online gamers being fat nerds and then gawp at some hapless starlet’s breasts for two hours).

You want to get that looked at, mate...

This sequel is set in Eastern Europe and sees Johnny Blaze off riding the earth and trying to get rid of his ‘Ghost Rider’ curse once and for all.  This leads to him intervening in weird, demonic cult shenanigans to save a child – sentimentality alert! – and locking horns with Ciaran Hinds, who appears to have a slight eye infection.

Hey up, it's Dumbledore's brother!

Eye infection/demonic possession – you can understand my confusion.

Anyhow, as with all superhero movie trailers latterly, lots of things proceed to blow up, jump out at you and generally try and EXCITE THE VERY FILLINGS FROM YOUR TEETH WITH AWESOME SAUCE!  

Ghost Rider gets new wheels.

I’m not sure that they’ve entirely succeeded on that front.   The action looks to be as gonzo and OTT as it usually is in a Neveldine/Taylor film, but I’m not entirely sold on the ‘kid-in-peril’ angle.  There’s no need for a kid to be in a movie like this, with a character like this, unless it’s to roll out the old schtick about redemption, saving an innocent child from evil’s outriders – that’s stuff we’ve all seen 10,000 times before and it’s genuinely of no interest to me.

So that's where Christophe Lambert's been all these years...

I quite like the Eastern European vistas seen in the trailer – it’s nice to see a superhero movie venturing outside the US for a change (I can only think of “Captain America – The First Avenger”, the “Fantastic Four” sequel and “X-Men: First Class” doing this) and acknowledging that other countries in the world might quite like to have merry hell visited upon them in the name of truth, justice and flaming skulls.

They've redesigned the skull, apparently. Can't say that I noticed.

I guess that I’m cautiously optimistic that this will offer decent, B-movie chuckles come the early part of next year – the track record of the directors doesn’t fill me with joy, but it’s hard to see how directors who usually aim fast, dirty and low can really mess up material that’s essentially goofy, harmless and drawn from similar storytelling cloth to the TV series “Supernatural”, which I’m really quite fond of.

I've got no idea how you film a bloody stunt like this. I assume the poor fella's still alive...

On the down side?  This is yet another PG 13-rated, post-converted 3D effort, the latter aspect of which still indicates that movie studios regard the format as an after-thought gimmick and solely a thing to check off on your marketing plan.  I’ve always said that if a studio can’t be bothered to stump up the cash to do 3D properly, I can’t be bothered to dip my hand into my pocket and throw any cash at them.

I hope he's got third party car insurance...

“Ghost Rider” opens in the US, UK and most European territories on the 17th February 2012.

Leave a comment

Filed under Films, Geekery, Movie Trailer