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Entries in Visual FX (144)

Thursday
Oct172019

Over & Overs: Twister (1996)

In Over & Overs we ask Team Experience to share movies that they've seen countless times and tell us why.

by Tony Ruggio

As a kid growing up in Texas, with family in Oklahoma and Nebraska, I had a morbid fascination with tornadoes and the would-be thrill of storm chasing. My fascination was outweighed only by the sheer fear of death. The possibility of finding yourself at the mercy of mother nature was all too real in Tornado Alley, at least for a nine year-old. In the summer of 1996 in air-conditioned theaters an entire country (and myself) learned about the Fujita scale, from itty-bitty F1 tornadoes to mile-wide F5 monsters. Twister was a multiplex phenomenon and the first disaster film in decades to strike hot at the box office. With mixed reviews and Independence Day casting a big shadow, it was then somewhat forgotten...until cable came to the rescue. 

Click to read more ...

Saturday
Aug172019

Captain America vs. Captain America

Can Marvel Studio's finally win the Best Visual Effects Oscar at the Oscars via Avengers: Endgame? Or will The Lion King's photo-realism or something as yet unseen take the prize? Here's a video of the making of the Captain America vs Captain America fight.

That fight was definitely the highlight of the movie for us, especially given its perfect punchline...

Click to read more ...

Friday
Jul192019

Yes, No, Maybe So: "Cats" (and personal "Cats" histories)

by Nathaniel R

All longform discussions of the trailer to Cats must be prefaced with one's own history with the Andrew Lloyd Webber megahit. It's the law. This is why no matter how insane the movie may appear, no matter how much it be instantly mocked on the internet, it will have (at least) a gigantic box office opening. The megamusical has been a phenomenon since 1981, grossing literally billions of dollars on stage, winning awards and selling millions of albums (back when people actually bought such things) with the hit song "Memory" being covered by hundreds upon hundreds of musicians thereafter. 

Cats was my first Broadway touring show which I saw in Detroit (presumably at the Fox Theatre?) as a kid. My parents bought me the t-shirt and later for Christmas the Original Cast Recording. On my first ever trip to NYC in 1989 (?) it was then my first Broadway show. I know I know... I was once a typical tourist who saw something he'd already seen *shakes head at self* while in New York when other surely better and newer things were playing. I was so obsessed Cats that I learned "Memory" on the piano and named my next two kittens "Mistoffles" and "Rumpleteaser". How young and foolish and easily manipulated I was by splashy worldwide sensations as a child. And yet from the 1990s onward I've barely thought of it but for whenever discussions of a possible movie version would come up, most notably all the joking in Six Degrees of Separation (1993).

Okay that's my history. You must share yours (it's the law) and since Cats is such an event brand, we must do the Yes No Maybe So™ breakdown after the jump in real time screencaps rather than trifurcating with our yes, no maybe so headings. Ready?

To quote Judi Dench as "Old Deuteronomy"...

We're about to begin

Click to read more ...

Sunday
May192019

Review: Pokemon Detective Pikachu

by Tony Ruggio

I was already in high school by the time Pokemon became a worldwide phenomenon, and I was in no mood for cute, cuddly anime animals at the moody age of sixteen. For this non-fan, however, Detective Pikachu is a minor delight filled with joy, heart, and giant Pokemon doing battle. It’s a big, bubbly kids movie that grows on you until the inevitably exhausting bombast of a cartoony third act...

Click to read more ...

Sunday
May052019

Yes No Maybe So: "Gemini Man"

by Eurocheese

Let's do a Yes No Maybe So on a strangely under the radar film (given the names involved). When Nathaniel put out the call for more trailer coverage, I though I'd give the Gemini Man trailer a second look because honestly, when I saw the trailer in theaters I was completely confused. This is not what I expected as a next step for either Ang Lee or Will Smith, two names none of us might have ever thought to link. If I had predicted them working together, I would not have pictured a somber sci-fi action film. 

The YNMS breakdown is after the jump... 

Click to read more ...

Thursday
Apr042019

Open Thread & Random Buzz 

What movies are you thinking about right this very second?

I've got four movies playing in my head at the moment, two still imaginary and two just screened. The still-imaginary ones are, first, the Bill Condon / Sir Ian McKellen / Dame Helen Mirren thriller The Good Liar which got strong buzz out of the industry promo event CinemaCon. The second is the film adaptation of Cats which sounds Titanic-like (the boat not the movie) in its possibly epic high profile sinkability. Apparently the cats are not fully mocapped creatures but still look like the actors with fur digitally added but they're cat-sized (but why would they mention the cat-sized bit unless they shared scenes with humans which Nooooo).

As for the real movies that already exist in competed form, Laika has another winner with Missing Link (they've yet to make a stinker!) which we currently have in the 'most likely to be nominated' spot in the Best Animated Feature race. It opens in just one week so more on that one real soon. The other is Sebastian Schipper's Roads which we can't talk about yet because it doesn't premiere until later this month at Tribeca but let it be known that we love it. Oops. We weren't supposed to talk about it! But it's from the German director who made that exciting 'how'd he do that?' entirely continuous shot movie Victoria a couple of years back. This new film Roads could, like Victoria, be categoried in the subgenre of "Protagonist having dangerous and unexpected soul-shaking adventure whilst travelling abroad" movie but its much different so Schipper is no one-hit wonder or one-trick pony. The leads Fionn Whitehead (Dunkirk, Black Mirror: Bandersnatch) and Stéphane Bak (Elle, Farewell to the Night) have terrific chemistry. If you're planning to hit Tribeca, schedule it.

What's on your cinematic mind?