It’s been seven years since Alfonso Cuarón’s mesmerizing sci-fi tale Children of Men hit theaters, and the director’s follow-up, Gravity, is equally stunning. George Clooney and Sandra Bullock star as astronauts adrift in space following a shuttle accident. The vast blackness consumes them. As our own Jason Bailey wrote, “It is a powerful visual, encompassing both the genuine awe of the setting, and the utter terror of the situation.” The space thriller toys with our fears of the unknown, just like these other frightening galaxy-spanning stories. … Read More
Following the lead of privatized-space-exploration venture SpaceX, actor Rainn Wilson has gotten on board with Planetary Resources, an “interplanetary… Read More
It’s easy to get jaded, in this season of After Earths and Hangover IIIs and Furious 6es, but let’s remember: sometimes big summer blockbusters attain that phenomenal degree of success for a reason. There’s nothing wrong with a good, old-fashioned popcorn movie, and those that do it well deserve our praise. But in researching a recent roundup of favorite summer movies, your film editor was shocked to discover how many presumably beloved modern classics were not, in fact, universally acclaimed. So, as with award winners and cult classics, it’s time for another round of “movies the critics got dead wrong.” … Read More
As we’ve discussed recently, the dearth of strong female characters in mass entertainment continues to be a source of depression, but here’s a little cheer-up: artist Spencer Salberg, who posts his work on his heymonster Tumblr, has created a series of Strong Female Character portraits, which cast the likes of Buffy Summers, Liz Lemon, Leslie Knope, and Zoe Washburn as saints. Check them out after the jump, and buy (very reasonably priced!) prints of each here. … Read More
Because it came out in the ‘90s and now people old enough to remember it are running websites, a lot of Internet ink has been spilled recently over the 20th anniversary of The Sandlot, writer/director David Mikey Evans’s 1993 remembrance of baseball, boyhood friends, and the summer of ’62. But the most interesting discovery of all of this nostalgia bathing was the unveiling of three photos (by Mr. Evans himself) of the elaborate puppets they used to create “The Beast,” the giant English mastiff that terrifies that neighborhood kids. Looking at those images (and you can check them out after the jump), we get a little nostalgic ourselves — for a time when computers weren’t the solution for scaring an audience, leaving artists and puppeteers to create the horrifying creatures of moviedom. Let’s take a look at how it used to be done. … Read More
Lynne Ramsay is a tremendously talented director, as anyone who has seen her films We Need to Talk About Kevin and Ratcatcher can tell you, which makes the latest ripple in her career quite a bummer: when production began Monday on her latest film, the Natalie Portman-fronted Western Jane Got a Gun, Ramsay was nowhere to be found. Deadline broke the story (so beware; that site is notoriously cozy with studio types who might have it in their interest to paint Ramsay as wildly — and litigiously — irresponsible), reporting trouble right up to the start date. Ramsay still hasn’t issued comment on the matter, but the film’s producers have already lined up a replacement in the form of Gavin O’Connor, director of Warrior and Tumbleweeds (and the pilot of The Americans). Deadline branded Ramsay’s departure a “SHOCKER,” but it’s not as rare as you’d think; despite the intense work of developing a picture and preparing it, filmmakers have frequently walked away from pictures before — or even during — production. We’ve got a few examples for you after the jump. … Read More
Your Flavorwire resisted the temptation to wade into the recent controversy over those collectible figures from Quentin Tarantino’s Djanjo Unchained, but we’ll say this much: it’s important to remember that those toys were aimed at adult collectors, while we can recall (or have managed to suppress our memories) of some thoroughly strange movie tie-ins from our youth that were aimed directly at kids. After the jump, stroll back to the ‘80s with us, when any movie was marketable to anyone, no matter how bizarre or inappropriate. … Read More
Ellen Ripley. River Tam. Replicant Rachel. Kara Thrace. If you’ve spent hours obsessing over these incredible female characters from science fiction’s greatest films and TV series, then you’re definitely not alone. In fact, Las Vegas-based illustrator Jska Priebe has devoted an entire series to these beloved pop culture icons, re-envisioning them as religious icons in bold, mixed media works. Click through to check out her clever visual odes to the leading ladies of sci-fi, which we spotted over on The Mary Sue, and let us know in the comments who you think is the most worship-worthy! … Read More
Our friends at Mental Floss published an article yesterday revealing a list of literary characters that almost had entirely different names. We agree that J.R.R. Tolkien’s Bladorthin the Grey wouldn’t have rolled off the tongue as nicely as Gandalf the Grey does and felt relieved that J.K. Rowling, Raymond Chandler, and other writing giants had the good sense to wise up.
The list left us wondering about the original names of film characters. The best fictional heroes and villains aren’t remembered solely for their names, but a creative and original moniker can make an otherwise forgettable figure truly stand out. It’s also a great way to shed an interesting light on a character’s backstory. Click through to find out what disastrous, cinematic names directors and screenwriters evaded throughout film history. If you know of a particular lemon we didn’t cover, drop it in the comments below. … Read More
Since new horror anthology V/H/S premiered at Sundance, fans of terror cinema and multi-story chillers have been anxious to see more of the found footage collection. Directors like The House of the Devil’s Ti West and Adam Wingard (You’re Next) are featured in the tale about a group of misfits who are hired by a mysterious client to recover a VHS tape from an abandoned house. Once there, they uncover disturbing footage amongst a massive collection of tapes, disrupting their mission in unsettling ways. Last week the movie’s creepy poster premiered, and now Slash Film has shared a red band trailer for the film that gave us some serious chills.
With nerves officially rattled, we wanted to keep the momentum going and decided to dig up a few of the all-time scariest movie trailers. Some of these films may be familiar to you, but these unnerving trailers (several of them rare) probably aren’t the clips you’ve seen dozens of times before. Other films may be new to you, and hopefully these excerpts will entice you to seek them out for a good scare. Watch them all after the break, and confess your fears below. … Read More