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Entries in The Avengers (76)

Saturday
May022015

Observations from the Ultimate Marvel Marathon

So, as those of you who read every post know, I attended the Ultimate Marvel Marathon from Wednesday to Thursday night. The AMC staff was very present and high energy and it was a fairly well run event. The best part was that once you were seated, you got to keep that seat for the duration so if you wanted a sleeping break, you could have it and when you came back your seat was still there for you! Magic.

The only super gross part? How filthy with popcorn and garbage the theater got by the end as their were no cleaning breaks. Here's my Age of Ultron review but if you're curious about the general marathon event. Read on.

Herewith a few casual observations from the Marathon as well as some impromptu lists

THE EVENT SCHEDULE 

6:00pm IRON MAN (2008)
Twas curious to see this again knowing what it spawned, and how confident it was that it would be spawning it since it ends with an Avengers tease (then still 4 years away). It's also alarmingly sexist which I had kind of forgotten with Leslie Bibb in an awful role as a Vanity Fair reporter.


8:25pm 
THE INCREDIBLE HULK (2008)
This was the film I had the vaguest memory of. Tim Roth makes a committed villain but once he's CGI he's no longer special. Edward Norton is like the opposite body type of Mark Ruffalo so that's an interesting casting switcheroo. It was also funny to notice that they used to paint abdominal muscles on the actors as opposed to making them workout for months prior to filming; things changed quickly as superheroes began to dominate pop culture. P.S. Liv Tyler's voice sure is breathy!

MORE AFTER THE JUMP...

Click to read more ...

Friday
May012015

Lost in Translation: Dubbing Movies Into Foreign Languages

Sebastian here with a heartfelt criticism of dubbing movies for foreign markets.

Lake Bell in "In a World…," which isn't about dubbing, but it's a great movie and I needed a picture here.

This Monday I took a four hour train ride to see a movie.

I've done crazier things in the name of cinephilia. A few years ago I coerced my friends to take a day trip to Strasbourg just so I could see Steve McQueen's Shame three months before it opened here in Germany. But this time it was't about some small independent film. This time I went to all this trouble to watch a movie called Avengers: Age of Ultron. Maybe you've heard of it?

The superhero sequel had already been playing in German cinemas for a week and it's even playing in my small town. So why go elsewhere?

Click to read more ...

Tuesday
Apr142015

Mucho Miscellania, Ya Dig?

MNPP reminds us that today is the 15th anniversary of American Psycho, Mary Harron's masterpiece. True story: I used to get her confused with Mary Lambert as if the same person made Madonna's "Like a Virgin" Hee!
WOW was Dennis Quaid losing his shit on a film set real or staged?
MTV Which Avenger deserves a solo film most? The answer is obvious and Joss Whedon knows it. Weird that Marvel doesn't 
i09 the real reason we didn't get a third solo Hulk film has been unveiled
Comics Alliance the Avengers playing Family Feud on Jimmy Kimmel.
Awards Daily Director Michelle McLaren has left the Wonder Woman picture 
Variety revisits the Sony Hack (remember that? seems so long ago) and the minefield of legal questions its opened up 

I'm sorry there's so much superhero bizness lately but that's all the news feed is ever offering up of late

Biggest Tease
Josh Gad says he can't wait for you to "Be Our Guest"... yep, it's the cast of Beauty & The Beast (2016). Or some of them at least. 

Can't wait for you to be our guest.

A photo posted by Josh Gad (@joshgad) on Apr 14, 2015 at 11:37am PDT

Is that Luke Evan with the suddenly pointy twink hair? If so he looks so different with shorter hair. No Audra McDonald (Wardrobe) or Emma Thompson (Mrs Potts) in this photo though. Grrrrr

 

Earth's Mightiest Illustration
Love this. Well done Stephen Byrne 

  

On The Political/Theatrical Stage
BuzzFeed points out the delightful Hillary Clinton 404 page
MNPP as if those of us with tickets to this summer's Little Shop of Horrors event weren't excited enough. Jake Gyllenhaal is announced as Seymour!
Dissolve Magic Mike franchise may be heading to the stage next
New Hedwig <-- this is my favorite reaction to the first image of Darren Criss as Hedwig. 

Small Screen
Must Love Movies the story of Daredevil's opening credit sequence.
The Playlist Cary Fukunaga doing The Alienist as TV miniseries. That book freaked my shit out back when it was a best seller but I am sad that we've lost Fukunaga (Sin Nombre, Jane Eyre) to the overworked land of the serial killer procedurals. Did he really need to do another after True Detective? David Fincher isn't likely to be dethroned as king of the genre so let's have some other genres for our talented rising auteurs! 
Pajiba shares the VERY welcome news that Katee Sackhoff is taking her career into her own hands by creating her own series since Hollywood is far too stupid to notice her gargantuan charisma. It's called Rain and its sci-fi.

Madonna Screen (aka Nathaniel's Brain)
The Daily Beast surveys the rampant bald ageism and sexism that's greeting Madonna's every move this past week or two. It's all become very Freudian with the world's collective fear of 'all consuming female sexuality.'
Watch What Happens Live Andy Cohen invites Sandra Bernhard to watch the latest Madonna video "Ghosttown" (previously discussed) and it is a joy... especially when she sees Terrence Howard cooking beans and hunting Madonna with a rifle.

He's going to barbecue the bitch!

...Get me a rib. Get me a meaty rib" 

LOL. Also on my 130th view I was looking around Madonna's beautifully lit apartment (with dirty mattress) and realized that we'll still have electricity after the apocalypse! Whew, that's a relief

Exit Video
This made me laugh so hard that I now feel bad about myself. Apologies world, I am terrible. (P.S. I'm really hoping Trixie Mattel is the queen that RuPaul brings back that shashayed away too early on this season of RuPaul's Drag Race)  

 

Thursday
Mar052015

The Avengers (Again). Three Grabby Shots

The Avengers: Age of Ultron is nearing Spider-Man 3 levels of giving the game away before it opens. Which worries. Why the hard sell with a third trailer when you're going to break records even if you advertised with only the illustration of a turd -- and I don't mean the shitty poster, but an actual turd. This hard sell combined with the bleak tone of all the trailers (where's the fun of the megahit original?) combined with Joss Whedon calling the production "a nightmare" has me suddenly worried. Because, true story: I want it to be great. I love The Avengers (in comic and movie form). Yes, TFE complains about the glut of superhero movies but that doesn't mean they should've have a place in the movie ecosystem. They just shouldn't dominate it is all. They're dessert, not a balanced meal.

So at the risk of obvious spoilers (hey Marvel provided them not us) here are the three moments we must discuss...

Click to read more ...

Tuesday
Feb242015

Thoughts I Had... While Looking at 'Avengers: Age of Ultron' Poster

Thoughts I had while looking at the Age of Ultron Poster as they come to me...

Wow, that's ugly! And since this movie would make a billion dollars even if they advertised with a giant stinky turd as the poster, you'd think they could be a little more creative. You can get away with anything, Marvel, so make it count. Revive the art of the movie poster... it's not like you don't know the important of a good "cover" for your comic books.

And don't make it so obvious that Samuel L Jackson is bored of his role. 

Where's Drew Struzan when you need him? His posters could assemble multiple characters, amplify their already potent iconography, be fun and beautiful all at once. If you love poster art of the 1980s, you should consider buying his coffee table book.

Who knew that the Black Widow was a fan of Tron: Legacy 

You can see The Vision floating up near the top. They let him keep that bright yellow cape though we don't know if his skin will be red and his costume green. Seems unlikely. That's a lot of primary colors for a movie! I don't know why but I now equate his relationship with The Scarlet Witch to with Doctor Manhattan & Silk Spectre so if there's not a CGI generated scene co-starring Elizabeth Olsen and Paul Bettany with a bright red penis, I'm going to be disappointed.

Thor is about to hammer Captain America [ahem]

I hope the robots made of pixels have more character than those nameless alien pixels they battled at the end of the first movie.

I miss The Leftovers (I'm not the only one who was reminded of this). Come back Carrie & Justin

OMG remember The Rapture (1991)? Mimi Rogers was so amazing in that movie and it seems like no one has seen it. My Oscar nominees that year woulda been Foster/Davis/Sarandon/Rogers/Dern with apologies to The Bening! (What? It always comes back to best actress.)

Monday
Feb092015

'Nobody's Baby,' But Everyone's Cover Girl

Another wave of Scarlett Johansson mania is nearly upon us courtesy of The Age of Ultron. Here she is very late seventies/early eighties styled for W magazine's spring issue

Photography by Mert Alas

As a child in New York, Johansson was fascinated with every aspect of show business. “I had a big imagination,” she said. “I particularly loved Judy Garland, and, to me, she did it all. For as long as I can remember, I wanted to be an actor. And I wanted to do everything. When you’re a kid, they send you on a lot of commercial auditions, and I was terrible at selling things. I never got those parts. I remember crying in the subway, and my mom said, ‘Look—let’s forget it. Do something else.’ And I replied, ‘No. You can’t take this away from me. I want to be an actor!’ Waiting for the B train, I had my come-to-Jesus moment.”

So Johansson (and her mother, who became her manager) decided she would audition only for films. In addition to a precocious mix of sexy and cute, even as a girl, Johansson had a trump card: her deep, slightly hoarse, smoky speaking voice. 

This new W magazine profile is by Lynn Hirschberg and Scarlett shares that the black hair in Under the Skin was her idea. A good one! Strangely the photos for this article aren't up despite a link saying they are.

Tuesday
Dec092014

Interview: James Chinlund's Evolutionary "Apes" Vision. (Plus a Look Back at "The Fountain")

Production Design James ChinlundThough today's film culture is as as overun with franchises as the decaying cities of Dawn of the Planet of the Apes are with unchecked vegetation, franchise movies do have a few beautiful unique pleasures all their own. Chief among those, we'd argue, is the sheer scale of imaginative spectacle they can provide when the right people are hired behind the scenes. 

James Chinlund, the award winning production designer behind the fantastic world-building in Dawn of the Planet of the Apes is one of those people.  Though his filmography was once mostly the domain of scrappy ambitious auteur indies, he's recently experienced a sort of super-size me effect. He credits Marvel's gamble in hiring him to design their biggest blockbuster The Avengers with reinvigorating his film career. This led directly to Dawn of the Apes, one of 2014's most acclaimed giant-sized hits. Though Chinlund undoubtedly has his share of film offers these days, he prefers the mix of small and large scale projects that his still-diverse career provides and opted out of superhero sequels from the time commitment. 

Apes, Avengers, and The Fountain are after the jump... 

Click to read more ...