The Bloody Hero Film Festival

I know I had mentioned it before but the Bloody Hero film festival is coming February 8th, 9th, and 10th. It will be held at the Phoenix Center For The Arts. We are looking forward to it. We would have liked to have something in competition but we promised to premiere our short film at Phoenix Comicon. What we will be doing is our podcast, The Gorram Nerd Hour, from the festival. We will also be doing at least one panel or more and we were just asked to sit on the jury form the film festival. It is certainly an exciting time for us.

We don’t have all the details yet on how everything will be set up at the film fest but anyone who is local should try and come out for it. It’s really exciting to see more stuff like this popping up. I can’t wait to go check it out. 



The Barbarian Returns! Schwarzenegger Returns To Conan

Anyone who saw the Marcus Nispel directed mess that was the remake of Conan The Barbarian can agree that the movie was a lame duck. Jason Momoa was not right for the role. He just seemed too nice. He was supposed to be a barbarian after all. Now the good news. They’re not going to make a sequel starring Momoa and they’re not going the straight-to-video Scorpion King route either. Instead they went back to the man who made Conan a household name – Mr. Arnold Schwarzenegger. 

Rumor has it that they will be ignoring the events of Conan The Destroyer all together. This will be a direct sequel to Conan The Barbarian instead. Warner Brothers tried that when Bryan Singer took on Superman Returns. That didn’t work out well. But, then again, they didn’t have Christopher Reeve coming back for the movie. 

According to the producers this will be like a giant fantasy version of Unforgiven. I don’t know. Maybe the franchise is better off left dead. Should it be revived only to out the final nail in its coffin? Or could this be a sword and sorcery version of Unforgiven? I will reserve judgement until the time comes when the movie happens and is seen by the public. As we all know, there are plenty of times where actors sign on the dotted line and the movie still never happens. Thank God that happens sometimes. I don’t think any of us wanted to see Nicolas Cage as Superman!

Ghostbusters 3 Back On?

Rumor has it that Ghostbusters 3 is now going to happen by summer. I don’t want to say I am opposed to the idea. I’m not. I just don’t like that Bill Murray doesn’t want to come back and they still plan to move ahead with or without him. If they can’t get the main four guys there’s no point.

Ivan Reitman, the director of the first two films, had another movie in pre-production at Paramount that just got put into turnaround. Supposedly the reason Paramount did this was to allow him to make Ghostbusters 3. I don’t see Paramount and Sony working so well together to allow Reitman to bail on them for a higher profile project. I have a feeling they didn’t have enough faith in him or the script and that’s why it happened. I think Paramount and Reitman are just trying to save face. In the last 15 years Reitman has been floundering as a director making bad movies like Evolution and My Super Ex-Girlfriend. That’s greatly diminished his clout. He needs Ghostbusters to get back on top. Dan Aykroyd has been pushing to make this happen for years. That’s not a good thing either. He did the sequel to The Blues Brothers, sullying the memory of John Bulushi, and now is considering making an third Ghostbusters without Bill Murray. I say no.

Sure, I have faith in Etan Cohen as a writer but without all the pieces this could very easily fall apart. I would rather have no new Ghostbusters than an inferior sequel too many years after the fact. Let’s just hope it all comes together right or not at all. We don’t need another Star Wars or Indiana Jones type screw up. If it could be like Rocky or Rambo I would be okay with it.

At this point I guess it’s just a wait and see kind of thing.

Thank You, Richard Linklater

I remember being amazed when I was younger and saw Slackers for the first time. I became a lifelong fan of Richard Linklater right then. Even when the man works inside mainstream Hollywood he does well. But nothing beats his smaller, more personal films.

I know a lot of you would probably cite Dazed And Confused as his best movie. Not me, although I love that film. My personal favorite is actually a tie – Before Sunrise and Before Sunset. Those films starred Ethanol Hawk and Julie Delpy and were a beautiful take on a love story that doesn’t quite work out. In the first film they meet and fall in love. He goes back to the states and promises to come back to Europe in a few short months. The movie ends there without telling us what happened to them.

It’s a hard thing to make a sequel. It’s even harder to make one that was a love story nine years later. Before Sunset does it and does it well. Hawk’s character wrote a book and was on a tour through Europe. Delpy meets him at the bookstore and they spend the day together. You get the answers to the questions of the first film but Sunset ends with a whole crop of new ones to ask. What happens? Do they finally get together? Does he leave again? Do they just remain friends?

It had been teased after the second film that Linklater wanted to revisit the characters again in nine years. Well, nine years have passed and it would seem that the trio got together in secret and filmed Before Midnight. Personally, I am very excited about seeing these characters again. Being just a little bit younger than they are I always related to them. For romantic films I have only ever seen one I like more. That was Somewhere In Time. Sunrise, Sunset, and now Midnight are movies you can watch and feel like you are visiting old friends and catching up with them.

If this rumor is true I will seek this movie out and be first in line. I’ve only not liked one movie Linklater did and that was The Bad News Bears. I can’t imagine being disappointed here.

More Killer Prequel TV News

Just so we’re clear I mean killer as in people killing not killer as in awesome. I don’t like the idea of these prequel television shows depicting a young Hannibal Lecter or Norman Bates at all. I’m trying to be open minded about them as they have some talented people running these shows but it just seems like a bad idea.

First of all we have the first casting news for the Psycho prequel in the works over at A&E. Vera Farmiga, an actress I like very much, is playing Norman Bates’s mother. The show is being run by Carlton Cuse who was one of the masterminds behind Lost. I still don’t like the idea but I like Farmiga and Cuse. I may have to see what happens with this show.

As far as Hannibal is concerned I don’t know how I feel about any of the casting choices on that one. Bryan Fuller is a talented writer but I have issues with exploring this character further.

When it comes to evil the more it is explained the less scary it becomes. Silence Of The Lambs worked so well because we knew very little about Hannibal. The sequels and prequels all diluted that to a point where he sort of lost his edge. Same with Norman Bates. The original Psycho was amazing. Psycho II was fun and had a great ending. Parts 3 and 4 were terrible. Then there was the God Awful made for TV movie The Bates Motel which was supposed to serve as a backdoor pilot for a television series back in the 80’s. That didn’t happen thankfully. It was bad enough we had to sit through Manimal.

The reason other shows about serial killers work is because they focus on the good guys. Even Dexter is technically a good guy. Criminal Minds is about the team taking down the killers. The same goes for any other paint-by-numbers procedural cop show. When the focus is clearly on the bad people then who do you root for on a weekly basis? You can’t really root for anyone. That’s the problem.

I could be totally wrong about both these shows. Only time will tell. But I was right in the 90’s when I said that I didn’t like Independence Day because I saw clearly in my mind that the filmmakers were gonna get lazy and then everyone finally agreed with me when they saw Godzilla. I was right when everyone else was singing the praises of Batman Forever and I said the director was ruining the franchise. I felt vindicated and disgusted when I was proved right after Batman & Robin was released.

I always hope I’m wrong and I do truly hope that’s the case here. Only time will tell.

The Wachowskis For Justice League? Here’s My Opinion

Larry Lana & Andy Wachowshi made two really great movies as writers and directors. Maybe Cloud Atlas will make three. Bound and The Matrix were great films. There’s no question about that. The next two Matrix films were not great. Some would argue they were not even good, that the movies lost their way and fell apart. Let us not forget that they also made the God awful Speed Racer movie.

When not directing they still write. One thing they wrote was an adaptation of the amazing Alan Moore comic V For Vendetta. The best thing about the comic was that you understood V was a terrorist, someone not to be emulated. You understood him and why he was doing what he did but you didn’t ever make him out to be a hero. I can understand why Alan Moore didn’t want his name attached in any way to the film. They turned V into a hero. They justified his actions and him out to be a man who should be worshiped and admired as opposed to making the audience sympathize with him while at the same time being disgusted by his actions. It was a poor choice and a little lazy if you ask me.

Now the rumor mill is going strong with reports that the Wachowskis are in talks to make Justice League. I personally would rather see Ben Affleck. Unfortunatly, Affleck himself has already said he was never offered the chance nor had he even considered the possibility.

Even after people saw Matrix Reloaded and Revolutions they were still willing to believe the Wachowskis were good filmmakers. And maybe they are. But when they followed up their trilogy with the laughably bad Speed Racer most people wrote them off wondering if the brothers siblings had lost it. With Larry becoming Lana and the piss poor Speed Racer film it almost seems like they had gone off the deep end. I’m trying to reserve judgement until after seeing what Cloud Atlas has to offer. Honestly, I thought the movie looked beautiful but also kinda boring.

As far as Justice League I would rather see just about any other sibling team make the movie – the Hughes brothers would be great. As far as my list of directors I would like to see take on the film I would go with Edgar Wright, George Miller (who was once attached years ago), Ernest Dickerson, Guillermo del Toro or Joe Carnahan. I think any of them would be a better fit. I would still put the Hughes brothers at the top of my list. After seeing Menace II Society, From Hell and The Book Of Eli I would love to see what they could do with a Justice League movie.

That’s my opinion. Take it for it’s worth.

R.I.P. Tony Scott

It’s a sad day for movie fans. Tony Scott apparently took his own life today. It isn’t known what caused him to do so but he will be missed.

When a man has a famous family member it can be difficult to etch out a place for yourself without constant comparison. Tony Scott did just that. While Ridley Scott was off making movies that were less commercial Tony jumped into creating such big commercial action films as Top Gun and Beverly Hills Cop 2. He continued to move his career forward by creating visually stunning work that redefined what we expected from action cinema.

Scott had a long cinematic relationship with Denzel Washington. They collaborated on several projects that proved to be some of Scott’s best work – Crimson Tide, Man On Fire, Unstoppable being amongst them. My personal favorite is True Romance, written by relative unknown Quentin Tarantino, and starred Christian Slater, Patricia Arquette, Brad Pitt, Val Kilmer, Dennis Hopper, Christopher Walken, and a host of others. This movie showed what Scott was capable of in terms of action and story. The scene between Hopper and Walken was one of the best scenes I have ever watched. The action scene at the end was like a pre-America John Woo. He really elevated his game with that one.

He followed True Romance with Crimson Tide, another great piece of cinema. Washington and Gene Hackman were both perfect in this film. This is my favorite submarine movie after Das Boot.

He took a different career path than his brother and showed the world what he could do. I’m both sad and angry that he is gone. I’m angry because I always felt that suicide and drug overdoses by celebrities are not deserving of our sadness. I also understand that he has family and I am sad for them. I know what it is like to lose someone close. I also know what it’s like to witness a person who is suicidal try to end their own life.

My heart goes out to his family. He will be missed.

Possible Guardians Of The Galaxy News

It is being rumored that Marvel may have settled on a director for their upcoming adaptation of the Guardians Of The Galaxy comics. Ever since Marvel has been making movies they have made bold choices in who directs their movies. Even with their missteps you can’t help but respect the thought behind it. As much as I loved the idea of Ang Lee making a Hulk movie it didn’t turn out well. That doesn’t mean I won’t give Marvel a large heaping of respect for thinking outside the box.

They are continuing the trend of making bold choices if this rumor is correct. James Gunn, the man behind such films as Tromeo & Juliet and Dawn Of The Dead as a writer and Slither and Super as a director, is reportedly in talks to make the film. This is great news. The man has a wonderful sense of humor and can also go very dark. He is very skilled as a writer and director. It seems strange that a man who’s films have barely registered as a blip at the box office would be the director of choice for such a film unless you consider his relationship with Avengers director Joss Whedon. They have been friends for years. Whedon even named the character of Gunn on Angel after him. Given that Marvel is very happy with Whedon after what he did with Avengers and even helping Kenneth Branagh find his Thor in Chris Hemsworth I would imagine that his word is gold around the Marvel offices right now.

If you haven’t seen Slither or Super you owe it to yourself to seek them out. They are both very good movies. Gunn also recently created a video game called Lollipop Chainsaw that I hear is quite fun. The only thing I haven’t really liked that he wrote was the first two Scooby Doo movies. I don’t really blame him for that though. I saw glints of Gunn’s sensibilities there but they seemed to be watered down in favor of keeping the films more family friendly. It was Scooby Doo after all.

If James Gunn is involved with Guardians this just jumped up on my must see list. The other good thing is that he and Whedon are both good friends with Nathan Fillion who is the fan favorite to play Ant Man. With two directors pushing for Fillion to be a part of the Marvel Universe we may actually get to see this happen.

Ben Affleck For Justice League?

I know people have issues with Ben Affleck, myself included. It’s not because he’s a poor actor. I think it primarily has to do with some very poor choices the actor made. As a director he’s been amazing. Both Gone Baby Gone and The Town were expertly directed and Argo looks like a lot of fun. Warner Brothers is looking at him for his skills as a director for Justice League. This is something I would not have thought of myself but I am perfectly fine with the choice should the studio and Affleck strike a deal.

What remains to be seen is whether this movie will get off the ground. At one point both Wolfgang Peterson and Mad Max director George Miller were attached. Miller got as far as beginning the casting process (Armie Hammer as Superman) and doing screen tests before Warner decided to pull the plug.

It still remains to be seen what will happen with Justice League but if they move forward with Affleck I have no problem with that. The only problem I may have is if he chooses to play a Superhero in the film. As a fan of Justice League I can’t see Affleck fitting any role for the founding members. Maybe the Elongated Man but that would even be a stretch (see what I did there?).

What I would not mind seeing is his brother Casey playing someone like The Atom. That could be fun, especially if they used the Identity Crisis storyline for a sequel.

Sequel News – Prometheus 2 Set For 2014 or 15

I guess it seems that worldwide box office was good enough for Fox to say yes to direct sequel to Prometheus. Michael Fassbender and Noomi Repace are signed and Ridley Scott wants to do it. Damon Lindelof may be too busy to script the film bit everything else seems to he falling into place.

This is a sequel I can get behind. I thought Prometheus was a great film. I liked the tone and thought the story was entertaining and thought provoking. The ending left it open to continuing the story. And if Scott wants to do it then I say go for it.

I just hope that this doesn’t become the mess that the Alien films fell into, where they let them just become progressively worse eventually killing the franchise. Given this is set in the same universe it seems like a valid concern. Let’s hope Ridley Scott sticks around to help guide this series to keep it from following in the footsteps of the Alien films.