This week on the Bastardcast anti-gravity Anne joins the boys as they deal with a deansapointing porno, Keanu Reeves turning Japanese, eBay ruining slave doll profiteering, Robin Williams ruins twitter, and Maxim tells us that women prefer serial killers to toy collectors.
Also on the show: why the man who brought us Felicity may not screw up Star Wars, why Jenny Olsen is an upgrade over Jeremy Olsen, and why Adam Sandler might just “Zohan” Guardians of the Galaxy.
All that and a plethora of shitty impressions by the fat one. Wanna be our friend on twitter? It really isn’t that hard and we aren’t all that selective. Just follow us @RadioBastard and bask in the glow of intermittent genius.
The Bastardcast: An emporium of fancy dick jokes and other sparkling repartee.
The Oscar nominations were announced this morning in Hollywood by future Oscar host Seth McFarlane and sidekick Emma Stone, and surprise, surprise, there wasn’t much love for nerdy movies outside the technical categories.
One nerd came out very well though. Steven Spielberg‘s Lincoln got the most nominations with an even dozen, including Best Picture, Director, Screenplay and Actor for Daniel Day-Lewis. Following closely behind Lincoln is Ang Lee‘s Life of Pi with 11 nominations, among them Best Picture, Director, Screenplay and several technical award nominations.
For the more nerdy minded fair, two movies tied for the most nominations. The more prestigious was Quentin Tarantino‘s Django Unchained, which scored five nominations for Best Picture, Screenplay, Cinematography, Sound Editing and Best Supporting Actor for Christoph Waltz, who won the award in the same category for Inglourious Basterds three years ago. The latest James Bond film Skyfall was also nominated for five Oscars including Best Cinematography, Score, Sound Editing, Sound Mixing and Best Song for Adele‘s theme song.
The once mighty Oscar force of Middle Earth and Peter Jackson proved not to so powerful in the case of The Hobbit. The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey, which received only three nominations for Best Make-Up, Best Art Direction and Best Visual Effects, a far cry from the 11 awards that the final chapter of The Lord of the Rings, The Return of the King, won in 2004. Snow White and the Huntsman won two nominations, one for Best Costume Design and one for Best Visual Effects.
As for the biggest film of the year, box office-wise speaking, The Avengers, Marvel’s heroes received only one, singular nomination for Best Visual Effects, an award it also shares with Prometheus, which is that film’s sole nomination. And to all Dark Knight Rises haters, you’ll be pleased to know that Christopher Nolan’s final Batman received none.
In the animation categories, Brave, Frankenweenie, ParaNorman, The Pirates! Band of Misfits, and Wreck-It Ralph were nominated for Best Feature, while Adam and Dog, Fresh Guacamole, Head over Heels, Maggie Simpson in “The Longest Daycare”, and Paperman were nominated for Best Short. So, for the record, in about a month its possible that The Simpsons might have an Oscar to their credit. (Possible, not likely. But I guess we’ll see.)
The Oscars will air on ABC on Sunday February 24, 2013.
I’m not going to burn off 80 words on flowery bullshit that takes both sides of this issue into consideration before I finally err on the side of objectivity. I’d rather try an alternative approach: This shit is stupid.
Django Unchained is not going to ever air on the Hallmark Channel. It isn’t a movie that was made to be adored by everyone, and that’s why I would allow Quentin Tarantino to take me in a thrusty, masculine, and yet gentle way should his tastes suddenly take a left turn toward big-titted fanboys. Fuck appeasing the masses (and didn’t I just demonstrate my own antipathy for that?). Foot fetishists and bad ass motherfuckers. That’s who QT works for, and though there is a shocking lack of primo tootsies in Django, there is a fuck-ton (a slang term for a ton of fuck, meaning a whole lotta shit) of controversy thanks to the films slave-y subject matter, violence, and the use of the word that the “N-word” implies. (more…)
It’s an unfortunate side effect of a violent society to blame popular media for the crimes of the mentally unstable. With the release of Django Unchained, a gory spaghetti western, director Quentin Tarantino was recently questioned about his love of violence during an interview on NPR. While the interview wasn’t a total bust, when Terry Gross brings up Sandy Hook, Tarantino becomes incredibly agitated, but it seems her poor choice of words understandably triggered his response.
GROSS: So I just have to ask you, is it any less fun after like the massacre at Sandy Hook Elementary, like, do you ever go through a period where you lose your taste for movie violence? And movie violence is not real violence, I understand the difference. But still, are there times when it just is not a fun movie experience for you – either to be making it that way or to be in the audience for something like that?
TARANTINO: Not for me.
GROSS: So it’s so completely separate, that the reality of violence doesn’t affect at all your feelings about making or viewing very violent or sadistic…
TARANTINO: Sadistic? I don’t know. I do know what, I don’t know. I think, you know, you’re putting a judgment on it.
GROSS: No, no, no…
TARANTINO: You’re putting a judgment on it.
GROSS: The characters are sadistic. The characters are sadistic. I’m not talking about, you know, the filmmaker. I’m talking about the characters. I mean, the characters are undeniably sadistic.
TARANTINO: Mm-hmm. When you say after the tragedy, what do you mean by that exactly?
GROSS: Well, like…
TARANTINO: Do you mean like on that day would I watch “The Wild Bunch?” Maybe not on that day.
GROSS: Or in the next few days, like while it’s still – while it’s still really fresh in your – while the reality – yeah.
TARANTINO: Would I watch a kung fu movie three days after the Sandy Hook massacre? Would I watch a kung fu movie? Maybe, ’cause they have nothing to do with each other.
GROSS: You sound annoyed that I’m…
TARANTINO: Yeah, I am.
GROSS: I know you’ve been asked this a lot.
TARANTINO: Yeah, I’m really annoyed. I think it’s disrespectful. I think it’s disrespectful to their memory, actually.
GROSS: With whose memory?
TARANTINO: The memory of the people who died to talk about movies. I think it’s totally disrespectful to their memory. Obviously, the issue is gun control and mental health.
Django has received a lot of unfair criticism seeing as there is no way the deranged asshole involved in Sandy Hook could have seen it. Where do you stand on the debate that movies cause violence? Sound off in the comments.
Sources: CinemaBlend, Movieline
I’m not going to say or type that word. I have my reasons, namely that it isn’t an active part of my vocabulary and I recognize the legitimate causticity of it, but with that said, I firmly believe that a word’s power comes from the intent behind it’s use. Sadly though, others do not agree, and so we have a supposedly “politically correct” replacement phrase like “N-word”.
Why am I writing about “the N-word” on a movie site called Nerdbastards? Well, a few weeks ago, actor Samuel L. Jackson was being interviewed by a Houston based TV reporter named Jake “The Movie Guy” Hamilton and the term figured prominently.
The video can be seen here, but at around the 13:55 mark, Hamilton asks Jackson about the “N-word” controversy in his new film, Django Unchained. In the film, which focuses on slavery, the word that the “N-word” refers to is uttered more than 110 times according to various reports. (more…)
We like to think that it’s a nerds’ world at the movies, and certainly there’s been a lot of press in the last few years to back that up, but in 2012 it seemed especially true.
Developing a Top 10 List of the best of the nerdiest films this year was no easy feat, even with high-profile disappointments like Prometheus, John Carter, and The Amazing Spider-Man, but we were still able to do it. Some of these titles maybe obvious, but they all have one thing in common, they prove that in the genres of sci-fi, horror, fantasy and action, the year 2012 was far from the end of the world. Cinematically speaking, at least.
Here’s the Top 10 Nerdy Films of 2012.
1. The Avengers
Can we take a minute and appreciate the mere fact that this film even managed to exist, let alone be as good as it is? First of all there’s the logistical feat of getting all these characters and actors co-ordinated onto a single soundstage. Then there was the Hail Mary hiring of Joss Whedon, a man known more for his TV work and his one movie based on one of his TV shows than for blockbuster filmmaking. And finally, there was the shattering weight of expectations; billions of dollars and a decade of work all riding on The Avengers not just being done, but being done well and then doing well at the box office. The result was not just the third biggest box office hit of all time, but the closest thing a major summer tentpole flick can get to being an auteur work. Every inch of this film had Whedon’s fingerprints on it, and his voice never gets lost amongst the action and effects. So complete was Whedon’s influence on the film that Marvel bucked its own trend and hired him immediately, not just for the sequel, but to be the overseer of the entire Marvel Movie Universe on the Disney end. Forget the Whedonites! Hollywood, Joss is your master now.
It was a long time waiting for the latest Bond movie, and while I’m not sure I’d stamp Skyfall as the best Bond movie of all time, I think we can all agree that it sufficiently washed the taste of Quantum of Solace out of our collective mouths. On the occasion of the character’s 50th anniversary of his big screen adventures, the franchise’s producers, and director Sam Mendes, managed to put together a Bond flick that was strangely familiar while continuing down the bold path set by Casino Royale. Bond himself is treated to a complex arc that questions his abilities and his dedication, and M becomes the most unusual Bond girl as Her Majesty’s finest tries to keep his boss’ sins from coming back to kill her. A charismatic villain in the person of Silva played by Javier Bardem, as well as the addition of new supporting players like Ralph Fiennes, Naomie Harris and Ben Whishaw as the stalwart new Q, and you have the rare Bond movie where you’re just as engrossed by the non-action scenes as you are by the action. Even the fact that film’s climax bears a little resemblance to a more lethal Home Alone scenario does nothing to diminish the greatness of the Skyfall.
3. The Cabin in the Woods
Finally freed from bankruptcy purgatory, The Cabin in the Woods came out this past spring and gave us a new cult classic from director Drew Goddard and officially kicked-off what was to be the year of Whedon. More than that though, The Cabin in the Woods is perhaps the most effective deconstruction of the horror genre since the first Scream, and if it had been more successful at the box office, it would have been just as significant a game changer. Instead, Cabin will have to stand as a bizarre, though effective, reboot of The Evil Dead. Five pretty young people go into the woods where they awaken an ancient evil from beneath their dilapidated cabin. But the gag is there’s a second story running concurrently, a secretive group of some kind of instigators both controlling and observing the action and fate that befalls our young heroes. Or are they the heroes? Really the stars of the film are the Statler and Waldorf-esque Hadley and Sitterson played by Bradley Whitford and Richard Jenkins, and where as in different hands these two would definitely be played for villains, in Whedon and Goddard’s script they’re the unsung, under-appreciated heroes of the story. Ultimately though, Cabin may have been undone by marketing; if you went into the film cold it was a joy, but the trailers and the ads gave a lot away. And you scoff at J.J. Abrams for his secrecy…
4. Django Unchained
Yes, I will cross Spike Lee – who’s films I enjoy immensely – in order to include Django Unchained on this list, after all, if it’s a year with a Quentin Tarantino movie, it’s probably going to end up on a couple of lists like this. Continuing to cut a bloody swath of revenge and historical revisionism across cinema, Tarantino takes us to the final years of slavery in the American South prior to the Civil War, and like his previous film, Inglourious Basterds, Tarantino cares not for meandering asides, or anachronistic music selections, but is instead focused on getting us to the blood curdling – and blood spilling – finale. Of course, he makes us earn that visceral violent thrill by navigating a slew of quirky characters and silver-tongued dialogue scenes, which is all part of that QT-charm. Tarantino veterans like Christoph Waltz and Samuel L. Jackson hold up their end, while Tarantino rookies Jamie Foxx and Leonardo DiCaprio look like they’re having a ball, DiCaprio in particular seems to be relishing the role of the villainous Calvin Candie. And like most of Tarantino’s past endeavours, Django is an Easter Egg filled treasure trove of call backs, homages and cameos that require more than one viewing in order to catch them all. But of course you’re going to see this again and again because it’s Tarantino and you wish you were half the movie nerd he is.
5. Indie Game The Movie
Much has been said – and written – about independent musicians and filmmakers, but what about independent game makers. This documentary focuses on three different stories, each offering some kind of insight into the struggles, creativity and commitment of these bold few who shirk the big gaming houses to strike out on their own. One surprising aspect of the film is the way it peels back an industry that the mainstream still doesn’t really understand. The average guy on the street has at least a basic knowledge of the Hollywood studio system and the functioning of big record companies, but gaming? Well it turns out the difficulties translate across media. The other thing that translates is the passion. Even if you’re not the world’s biggest gamer, the subjects speak the language or art, whether it’s trying to maintain some semblance of artistic license, battling your former d-bag partner to be allowed to preview your game at a trade show, or simply working 16 hour days and apologizing to your wife with a promise that when you’re done it will all be worth it. It’s an inspiring tale of creative pursuit and the incredible effort to beat the competition and get your game in front of the most eyes. And they say there’s nothing artistic about video games.
It’s strange that in a year with so many big budget superhero movies in theatres that one of the best should be a low budget job starring a bunch of unknowns in a 90 minute film stylized to look like a home movies and CCTV footage. But there it is, and there is was. Chronicle, although late to the whole “food footage” trend, which this year alone included The Devil Inside, Project X, The Chernobyl Diaries, V/H/S, and Paranormal Activity 4, had the benefit of being one of the few none-horror offerings in the genre. On top of it all, it offered compelling character drama, a realistic spin on superhero archetypes, and blockbuster action on an art house budget. So complete was Chronicle’s impact on the genre that star Dane DeHaan was recently cast to play Harry Osborn in The Amazing Spider-Man sequel, and director Josh Trank was hired to direct Fox’s Fantastic Four reboot. But none of that would matter if Chronicle didn’t click on a basic level. It comes down to a question that’s plagued fanboys since the dawn of super-powers, would you use your powers for your own ends like Andrew, or would you use them to help others like Matt?
7. The Dark Knight Rises
I’ve heard a lot of people call this movie the Return of the Jedi of Christopher Nolan’s Dark Knight trilogy, and I think they meant it as an insult. I know a lot of people were disappointed that despite the hype, Rises didn’t change their world forever, but following the unprecedented heights of The Dark Knight how could it? Of course It couldn’t, and also not helping the situation is this false, Highlander-ish beef between Rises and The Avengers, as if there can only be one film to rule the nerds for all time. If you read Drew McWeeny’s two-part analysis of the film, I think it’s pretty much spot-on. What Christopher Nolan did, and I think fantastically to his credit, is take the Batman mythos and re-purpose it to be a realistic and human three-act epic. Sure, Bane and Talia’s revenge plot disguised as class warfare was perhaps overly complicated, but how often do movie crime plots revel in simplicity? Have none of you seen The Usual Suspects? So let’s focus on the positive: the film’s compelling emotional beats, all the comic book Easter Eggs worked in by the Nolans, and honestly, wasn’t Anne Hathaway the Catwoman of your dreams? In the end, what we got with Nolan’s Dark Knight trilogy was a competent, compelling, and artful cinematic telling of the Batman story with a thoroughly well-thought out beginning, middle and end. Besides, don’t we all know the alternative?
8. The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey
What was really unexpected about The Hobbit was the split between critics and fans; the former appraising the film with a collective sense of ennui (and serving it a 65 per cent “fresh” Rotten Tomato rating) and the later eagerly enjoying the return to Middle Earth after a long, 11-year wait. I concede I found myself somewhere in between while watching The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey. Any point that deviates from the main thrust of J.R.R. Tolkien’s first book is difficult to wade through, but whenever the story focuses on Bilbo and the dwarves’ journey to the Lonely Mountain is golden. So much so that I was disappointed by the time we get to the end and realizing I’d have to wait another year for part two. Technically, the film is brilliant. The photography, the effects, and the score are all amazing, and how awesome was it to have Gandalf back in grey mode (and essayed perfectly by Ian McKellen)? New players like Martin Freeman as the young Bilbo and Richard Armitage as would-be dwarf king Thorin are fine additions, and Andy Serkis owned as Gollum once again. In a case of the good far outweighing the bad, The Hobbit definitely leaves you wanting more, and Peter Jackson’s command of Middle Earth lore is indeed unquestionable. I think though there’s still a question of whether or not three movies is too much of a good thing. I guess we’ll see next Christmas.
9. Dredd 3-D and The Raid: Redemption
For me, it’s hard to separate these two movies, so they make the list together (which technically makes this a Top 11 list, and I know that, don’t bother pointing that out). Both are about cops who enter a building to bust a drug kingpin only to have it turn into a multilevel battle royale for survival. In Dredd, the cop just happens to be Judge Dredd, and in a feat of resurrection nearly impossible, director Pete Travis washed away the memory of Sylvester Stallone’s ill-fated attempt to turn the comic into a film back in 1995. As for The Raid, the Indonesia/US co-production was hardcore in a way that Hong Kong used to do best. The visceral bone-crunching fight scenes plus the various personal stakes amongst the cops and gangsters make this a bloody, claustrophobic and an all-too satisfying action flick that U.S. filmmakers are rarely capable of. As for Dredd, the 3-D makes this look like a big Hollywood effort, but it can be as rough and raw as any indie action effort. Like Chronicle, Dredd proved there’s a lot that can be done on a small budget, and certainly you don’t need a big budget to make the ultra-dystopia Mega City One a reality. Sometimes, when it comes to action movies, getting more bang for your buck gets you more bang for your buck.
Time travel is hard to pull off, but in director Rian Johnson’s first foray into genre filmmaking, he proves that he can cram a lot of ideas and inspiration into a single, two-hour film to create what maybe the best time travel thriller since 12 Monkeys. Now I’ve been a big fan of Johnson’s work for a while now, from the high school-noir Brick to the fanciful con-comedy Brothers Bloom, so maybe I can see past the logical fallacies because the filmmaker knows how to spin a good yarn. But I prefer to think it’s because Looper is a brainy, twisty and fun sci-fi film that, granted, isn’t as concerned with the snake eating its own tail minutiae of time travel as it is being a compelling character piece. For instance, some found the Bruce Willis-ish make-up worn by Joseph Gordon-Levitt to be kind of creepy, but I choose to believe that’s a compliment, like, “It’s creepy how much Joseph Gordon-Levitt looks like Bruce Willis.” But JGL’s spot on impression of Willis is just one aspect of one great performance that includes good work by Emily Blunt, Paul Dano, Jeff Daniels, Noah Segan, Garret Dillahunt, newcomer Pierce Gagnon and Willis himself. If you sat there counting the paradoxes you’re missing the point because Looper is The Terminator masquerading as Goodfellas. Or vice versa.
We survived! The genuine, accept no substitutes BastardCast crushed the Christmapocalypse and this week we’re back to talk about an Amazing Spider-Man, an Astonishing Stan Lee, and a Re-Employed Gail Simone. Following that, the boys continue their shameless public felating of Kevin Smith (He isn’t hiring any more “friends” Jeremy!), discuss the Django Unchained linguistic hullabaloo, the chances of building an actual Enterprise, asteroids, and pirates and the films that they love.
After that, Jeremy and Jason welcome back Anne Sisk and Steven Sautter to discuss the great war between digital comics and paper comics and the future of the comic industry and then we introduce the HALL OF EXCELLENCE and induct a man who ate everything on the Hobbit menu at Dennys… may he rest in peace.
All that and MOAR (Which is not a word!) on The Bastardcast!
The Bastardcast, people actually listen to this shit.
Currently enjoying critical spoils and many award nominations for his new film Django Unchained, Quentin Tarantino is now, of course, talking about his next effort. So where will Tarantino take us next? That Vega Brothers movie he’s mentioned before, or a Prohibition-era gangster flick? How about a trip back to World War II?
In typical Tarantino fashion, the filmmaker revealed in an interview with The Root that when he was penning his last film, Inglourious Basterds, he envisioned a side story featuring an equally demented squad American soldiers, an all-black squad who go AWOL and cut a bloody swath across France as they try to make it to Switzerland. The name of the film? Killer Crow. Here’s what Tarantino had to say:
“…My original idea for Inglourious Basterds way back when was that this [would be] a huge story that included the [smaller] story that you saw in the film, but also followed a bunch of black troops, and they had been f–ked over by the American military and kind of go apes–t. They basically — the way Lt. Aldo Raines (Brad Pitt) and the Basterds are having an “Apache resistance” — [the] black troops go on an Apache warpath and kill a bunch of white soldiers and white officers on a military base and are just making a warpath to Switzerland.
So that was always going to be part of it. And I was going to do it as a miniseries, and that was going to be one of the big storylines. When I decided to try to turn it into a movie, that was a section I had to take out to help tame my material. I have most of that written. It’s ready to go; I just have to write the second half of it…That would be the third of the trilogy. It would be [connected to] Inglourious Basterds, too, because Inglourious Basterds are in it, but it is about the soldiers. It would be called Killer Crow or something like that.”
Sounds like quite the Tarantino-esque project, but I think it would be nice if he’d move in a direction that has nothing to do with revenge or a period piece. Of course, I’ll be lining up to see it if it comes out though.
What do you think, Bastards? Killer Crow: yay or nay?
Every day the internet produces an astounding amount of goodies and gems. Most hilarious, some amusing, but all worth at least a few seconds of your time. We here at Nerd Bastards try to bring you the best bits of news and nerdery the webz has to offer, with a bit of snark thrown in. But sometimes not everything makes the cut. Monday through Friday we’ll be bringing you our inbox leftovers, our forgotten bookmarks, the nerdy bits that simply slipped through the cracks. You can submit items to Nerdy Bits by emailing us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
ABOVE: A Christmas Story in a galaxy far, far away… Gordon Tapley created this fantastic Star Wars twist on the lamp from A Christmas Story. [ObviousWinner]
Yet another year is coming to a close. This means we’ve got yet another Top [insert number here] list of [insert year here]. In this case, it’s the American Film Institute‘s awards for the top 10 motion pictures and the top 10 television programs of 2012.
The list includes many of the expected film titles like The Dark Knight Rises and Les Miserables. Same goes for the TV series; we’ve got Breaking Bad, Game of Thrones, Mad Men, Modern Family and The Walking Dead to drop some big names. Fun fact for y’all: Mad Men is now the most recognized AFI Awards TV honoree in history after 5 straight years on that list. I guess everybody loves themselves some Hamm, eh? Eh?
Anyway. Jump the chasm for the full list! (more…)