Movies

 

DC Comics has unleashed it’s DC Universe App. Users can download the app on select devices and check out the beginnings of the service. Getting mixed reviews, the app has some kinks to work out, as fans should expect. But what’s working and what isn’t? Are there major letdowns? Fans take to social media to air grievances and give praise where it’s due. Are fans excited for the app or let down by the budding streaming service? Is it fair to judge the service in its infancy? NerdBastards presents reactions of across the web while you decide if DC Universe is worth getting.

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It doesn’t take much of a spark to set the internet on fire. News broke that Henry Cavill, Superman, was on the outs with WB. Rumors flew, vague statements were released, and still the future for Cavill as the Big Blue Boyscout is uncertain. The rumors and speculations don’t stop with Cavill and Superman, other DC properties and franchises were dragged into the conversation, as well as reports of other actors. But who said what? What can be confirmed? Who would be the most likely replacement for Cavill and/or his Superman? Spoilers: No one you would expect.

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In Hollywood, there is no try. There’s do (and fail), fail (and do) until something, anything inevitably sticks with moviegoers, breathing new life into a thirty-year-old series in desperate need of reinvention, The Predator, co-written and directed by Shane Black (The Nice Guys, Iron Man 3, Kiss Kiss Bang Bang), proves what 20th Century Fox executives should have known – or maybe they’ve known all along – the Predator series should never have been a series. It should have stopped at one. The Predator was – and continues to be – near impossible to beat, let alone match, the combo of peak Arnold, ace action-director John McTiernan (Die Hard), and a dreadlocked, crab-faced, spine-ripping alien hunter caught up in jungle-set, deadly game of hide-and-seek. Bigger, faster, and armed with super-advanced tech, the Predator bloodily dispatched well-armed (in every sense) mercs, but proved no match for the former Mr. Universe (a/k/a, the Austrian Oak). Arnold, however, smartly stayed away from every sequel or spin-off greenlit by Fox in the misguided hope they could capture the magic of the original. They couldn’t and they haven’t. (more…)

For centuries, writers have been transfixed by monster stories. The most common monsters are from the 20th Century films: Frankenstein’s Monster, Dracula, the Wolfman, King Kong. But the ancient greeks had Medusa and the Minotaur. The Nords marvelled at Fenrir and Jormungand. The Chinese spun tales of Zhulong and Juiwei Hu. Humans have always been fascinated by the terrible creatures lying around each corner and, perhaps more fascinatingly, the aspects of their humanity.

Even more of a marvel is the evolution of monsters and love stories. Often, monsters would steal young women and were seen as cruel antagonists. They even were commonly metaphors for female impurity. However, over time, the idea of monsters being romantic leads grew and has become a new trope in literature and cinema. One of the earliest, most popular examples of this is the iconic, classic tale of Beauty and The Beast.

While Beauty and The Beast is a leader in this romantic subgenre, other films such as Twilight, Warm Bodies, and The Shape of Water have also been modern staples of the “finding beauty in ugliness” love stories. Though only these few are mentioned, there are countless more tales expounding upon the topic. However, one might wonder, how does such an odd sub-genre come about?

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While Warner Bros. continues to try – and continues to fail (and flail) – to match Disney/Marvel’s cinematic (superhero) universe at the box office or in popular culture, it’s succeeded where just about everyone least expected: A shared supernatural universe created by James Wan, the filmmaker behind not one, not two, but three popular franchises (Saw, Insidious, and The Conjuring). (A fourth, Aquaman, will get its long delayed debut at multiplexes in December.) Wan’s second entry in the series, The Conjuring 2 introduced “The Nun (Bonnie Aarons),” an ancient demon, supernatural star, and expert-level cosplayer that haunted the protagonists as a pasty-faced, rotted teeth, glowing-eyed nun (because by their nature, nuns are inherently frightening creatures). Within seconds of her terrifying appearance, audiences wanted to know more, see more, and hear about the Nun. As always, though, we should be careful what we wished for. Too much explanation, too little story, and the result looks something like the 1950s-set The Nun, a slow burn, slow build horror entry that’s all burn and all build, with little in the way of a satisfying emotional payoff.

As always, spoilers!!!!

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All aboard the hype train! Destination Marvel Studios! Captain Marvel has been much anticipated since its announcement. With the end of Infinity War teasing us further, fans have been chomping at the bit to see more from Carol Danvers, played by Brie Larson. Entertainment Weekly delivered with new first look images of the superheroine in full costume, as well as some sneak peek at what else we can expect from the film. Not sure who Captain Marvel is or why you should be hyped or what she means for the MCU? Settle in, True Believers! NerdBastards has the answers you seek. Infinity War spoilers ahead. You have been warned.

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Ethan Hawke has a varied and eclectic career. He’s been in direct-to-DVD films to blockbuster hits. He has a unique view on film making as an art and as a business. After Hawke commented on superhero movies he left fans divided. Insulting one of the most well-loved superhero movies in recent years, which is saying something with the number of movies the genre has had, put a bad taste in a lot of fans mouths. Twitter lit up, both coming to Hawke’s defense and trolling him – hard. Was he right? Or is he too out of touch with the average Joe to know why they like what they like?

 

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To franchise or not to franchise. That’s the question apparently every filmmaker, producer, or studio executive has to ask him- or herself before giving a greenlight to a sci-fi or fantasy property. In the case of Jonathan and Josh Baker, brothers making their feature film debut with Kin, an ill-conceived, frustratingly executed family/crime drama mashed up with plot points and elements unashamedly borrowed from familiar sci-fi classics (and at least one non-classic), the answer should have been no (as in “hell no”) when the franchise or series question came up. Instead, Kin sets up a larger world and universe, a bigger conflict in its final moments that practically begs moviegoers to see Kin multiple times so studio executives can greenlight anther entry. Spoiler alert: They shouldn’t. The Bakers and their screenwriter, Daniel Casey (expanding their short, “Bag Man”), shouldn’t have bothered or if they had, they should concentrated all of their time, energy, and talent into telling a story that could stand on its own. (more…)

Screens. Computer screens. Phone screens. Tablet screens. Screens within screens (e.g., iChat, Messenger, etc.). We live by (and through) screens. Sometimes we even die by them. Walk onto any bus or train in a major (or minor) city. Walk down a street in a major (or minor) city. Chances are, the result will be the same: A sea of downturned, blue-lit faces, their attention fixed on a virtual space (a text, a game, a video), often listening to music or audio, closed off to the analog world, simultaneously connected and disconnected. Both a cautionary tale and anti-cautionary tale and how technology can do both bad – connect a teen girl with a potential abductor – and good – help her father find her via her social media accounts, writer-director Aneesh Chaganty’s feature-length debut, Searching, takes a shallow dive into the deep end of the social media/tech pool, but where Chaganty swipes left on the subject, he also delivers an incredibly gripping, engaging suspense thriller, a credit both to a screenplay that mines universal fears parents have about their children and the world, and John Cho’s committed, persuasive performance as an increasingly frantic father desperate to find his lost daughter. (more…)

After the firing of James Gunn for, admittedly offensive, old tweets that Gunn already apologized for 6 years ago, many have been outspoken against Disney’s knee-jerk decision. But none have been quite as outspoken as Dave Bautista, Drax from Guardians of the Galaxy. Bautista has, on frequent occasion, called Disney out for its rash and hasty decision to fire Gunn, calling for Gunn’s reinstatement and tweeting at Disney with tweets directing them to the man behind the movement to get Gunn fired, conspiracy theorist Mike Cernovich.

 

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