Welcome back to our newly revamped “Retro Reviews” column, where we explore both the movies you know and love, as well as the oft overlooked gems you should be spending more time with. Our sixth entry is Antonia Bird’s underrated cannibal Western, Ravenous (1999)…
Ravenous is an extremely potent horror picture.
Yet to only view the film through the narrow prism of a single genre ignores what truly makes it special. Like Alex Cox before her, AntoniaBird has cobbled together a singular Western whose deepest roots reach back to its “spaghetti” precursors from Spain and Italy in the 1960s and 70s. It’s an amalgamation of particular influence; pulling from deep cut directors like Joaquin Romero Marchent while also tipping its Calvary cap toward Sergio Corbucci. So while the viscera may remain in the cave of the viewer’s mind much more vividly than the vistas, Bird has undoubtedly crafted an examination of manifest destiny that ranks with Major Dundee and Heaven’s Gate as a touchstone of widescreen Western filmmaking. (more…)
I know right now everyone’s got tunnel vision for The Avengers and the other hits of summer like Prometheus and The Dark Knight Rises, but there is life at the movies after Labor Day, and one example is Quentin Tarantino‘s latest film, Django Unchained.
In the latest about the film from Entertainment Weekly, the magazine shared a couple of promo stills from the film, and a couple of words from Django star Jamie Foxx:
There’s a beautiful way [Tarantino] found for the characters to talk to each other. It’s mindblowing. You’ve never heard it this way. You’ve seen movies deal with slavery — or westerns that never dealt with slavery – do it the safe way. This way is like … wow.
Is it Sheriff Doctor or Doctor Sheriff? Yesterday we showed you the hush-hush, naughty-naughty version of the Doctor Who season/series 7 teaser trailer. There was caution tape all around it and broken glass on the floor, and you could hardly hear a thing being said — today though, we offer up the full 1 minute and 15 second long teaser trailer in glorious sound, color, and officialness.
As was evident yesterday (for those of you who had the chance to spy it), the Doctor is in the old west, because bolo ties are cool. Joining him are Rory, Amy, and some kind of evil robot cowboy with some sort of glowy gun. Oh yes, and there are guns, guns, guns, and more guns. Also, there is running and it appears that Moffat and co. took full advantage of the Spanish plains and did, indeed, bring us to the Skaro wasteland — the former home world of the Daleks.
I won’t spoil, or painstakingly detail the rest because, well, I don’t have too. You can just click the link, so go ahead then and do it.
A few days ago we reported on Doctor Who filming in Spain for a Western episode and now the pictures to prove it have surfaced. Collected here are bunch of shots from the set where they’re filming Toby Whithouse and Saul Metzstein‘s Spaghetti Western episode and you’ll notice Matt Smith, Karen Gillan and Arthur Darvill are all present. So is a horse, and horses are cool.
You also might notice a stranger in these shots. The dude you don’t recognize is Farscape‘s Ben Browder, who’s guest starring in this episode and judging from the makeup in one photo he’s playing some kind of robo-sherrif or something.
Filming is currently underway for the seventh season of Doctor Who. We’ve had a chance to see a few images that leaked showing cast members running, the usual action for any Who episode, but now thanks to Doctor Who Magazine a few rumors about upcoming episodes have been confirmed.
He’s written a Western, a genre not seen since in Doctor Who since 1966. It’s being shot in Alemria in Spain at ‘Mini-Hollywood’, which is a Tourist Attraction that was built around the sets from the Sergio Leone Spaghetti Westerns. (So expect a joke about Ponchos being cool.) As they did with Croatia a couple of years back, they’re doing location shooting for two episodes while they’re there and the rumour is that the Tabernas Desert will be standing in for the ruins of Skaro.
At the time this comment treated as complete rumor because what facts are there to go from? None. But now after perusing Doctor Who Magazine, Bleeding Cool thinks there might be something to it. First off, DWM confirms they are currently filming in Spain for what will be a Western-genre episode. This Western episode will also feature Farscape‘s Ben Browder as a guest star and Sal Metzstein will be directing. There’s no talk about an episode set on Skaro, so that bit may or may not turn out to be true.
We also learned the episode we saw them filming earlier, the one with Mark Williams, will have a Chris Chibnall-penned screenplay and more guest appearances from Rupert Graves and David Bradley. Finally, for the last bit of Who news revealed in DWM, we now know season seven will be split into two blocks and the assumption is the split will happen with the Christmas episode. Also, two episodes from this second half will have Nick Hurran for director and will be written by Steven Moffat. Place your bets now for whether or not those episodes will be a two-part finale. I’m gonna say yes.
As a reader of this blog I’m going to assume you’re excited for Cowboys & Aliens based on its title alone. You probably also enjoyed Alien vs. Predator for the mere fact that you got to watch Aliens fight Predators. If you want to see cowboys (and Indians) fightin’ aliens, then yes, this film delivers and you won’t be disappointed. But, the real surprise is when you sit down to watch these two heavyweights duke it out you’re also rewarded with a poignant, heartfelt drama.
Cowboys & Aliens is a western in the truest sense of the word, from it’s sweeping landscapes to it’s gruff characters trying to make a living in an unforgiving world. Then, you thrown in some good ‘ole fashioned alien abduction, and you’re in for fun ride.
But it sure ain’t the greatest. Priest isn’t terrible, and while I understand that is in no way a positive tone to begin this review it’s a point I want to get in your heads right away. It’s not terrible, it just is what it is, nothing new, nor ground breaking. Having said that, the film is enjoyable as long as you go in with the right mindset. What you see is what you get, nothing more. There’s no deeper meaning or subtext, the story is totally straight forward and maybe a little predictable, but not bad.
Directed by Scott Stewart (Legion), Priest clocks in at 87 minutes, really just under 80 if you don’t count the opening and ending credit sequences. Meaning the film doesn’t really allow anytime for the story to lag or meander. We move quickly between plot points and the story is delivered seamlessly. For this film it works, had they tried to flush out the story into a sweeping, 2+ hour epic I’m sure my review would be much less favorable.
SILLOF is a very talented custom action figure creator. Pictured above is his version of a western Star Wars. The concept isn’t new or exciting (Everyone these days is Steam-punking this or Samurai-ing that) but his figures are true works of art. SILLOF captures the feeling of the original characters and makes you believe. One feature I loved about his site is the action figure of himself in his “About SILLOF” page.
That is cool, if your gonna be a kick-ass action figure maker then you should have your own action figure! You can click through the jump to see each individual Western Wars figure up close but before you do that let me tell you what really got my Nerdbastard juices going. SILLOF’s other custom action figure collections. He has the sets up for sale on his site. Don’t be drinking anything hot while you check the prices though, you might burn something, but don’t get me wrong, these are one of a kind pieces of artwork and as such command such prices.
Check out the full roster below, and head over to Sillof’s site for more awesomeness.