Theater or Renter: January 2009
Theater or Renter: January includes 5 SF movies The Unborn, My Bloody Valentine 3-D, Inkheart, Underworld: Rise of the Lycans, The Uninvited. Will we watch? Will we rent? or do we even care? Rules of the Game: Watch the trailers. Rate the Trailer. Then share with us your comments: does the movie, it’s trailer and buzz make you want to watch it in the theater, rent it, or not interested at all, and why?
Release Date: JANUARY 9th 2009
Listed as: Horror, supernatural Thriller
Studio: Rogue Pictures
Director: David S. Goyer
Produced by: Michael Bay, Andrew Form, Brad Fuller
Written by: David S. Goyer
Stars: Gary Oldman, Odette Yustman, Cam Gigandet, Meagan Good, Jane Alexander, Idris Elba, Rhys Coiro, Carla Gugino
The Plot / Story: Sometimes the soul of a dead person has been so tainted with evil that it is denied entrance to heaven. It must endlessly wander the borderlands between worlds, desperately searching for a new body to inhabit. And sometimes it actually succeeds. A young woman pulled into a world of nightmares when a demonic spirit haunts her and threatens everyone she loves. The source of a family curse dating back to Nazi Germany - a creature with the ability to inhabit anyone or anything that is getting stronger with each possession. With the curse unleashed, her only chance at survival is to shut a doorway from beyond our world that has been pried open by someone who was never born. (Wikipedia) (The Official Site)
My Bloody Valentine 3-D:
Release Date: JANUARY 16th 2009
Listed as: Horror, Thriller
Director: Patrick Lussier
Produced by: John Dunning, Andre Link, Jack L. Murray, Mike Paseornek, John Sacchi
Written by: Original story: Stephen Miller, Screenplay: zane Smith, Todd Farmer
Stars: Jensen Ackles, Jaime King, Kerr Smith, Tom Atkins
The Plot / Story: Ten years later, Tom Hanniger returns to Harmony on Valentine's Day, still haunted by the deaths he caused. Struggling to make amends with his past, he grapples with unresolved feelings for his ex-girlfriend, Sarah, who is now married to his best friend, Axel, the town sheriff. But tonight, after years of peace, something from Harmony's dark past has returned. Wearing a miner's mask and armed with a pickaxe, an unstoppable killer is on the loose. And as his footsteps come ever closer, Tom, Sarah and Axel realize in terror that it just might be Harry Warden who's come back to claim them. A 3-D movie. (Wikipedia)
Release Date: JANUARY 23rd 2009
Listed as: Adventure, Family, Fantasy
Studio: New Line Cinema
Director: Iain Softley
Produced by: Cornelia Funke, Ileen Maisel, Barry Mendel
Written by: David Lindsay-Abaire (screenplay) Cornelia Funke (novel) Gary David Goldberg
Stars: Brendan Fraser, Eliza Bennett, Paul Bettany, Helen Mirren, Andy Serkis, Jim Broadbent
The Plot / Story: Based on a German Novel called Inkheart. When Mo reads aloud from books, he has the ability to make the characters come out of the book, into real life. Mo discovered his power when his daughter Meggie, was just a baby. Mo read aloud from the book Inkheart, which caused several of the book's wicked characters, including Capricorn, to literally come to life. But while he read them out of the book, he accidentally read Meggie’s mother, Teresa into the story. (Wikipedia) (The Official Site)U
Underworld: Rise of the Lycans:
Release Date: JANUARY 23rd 2009
Listed as: Action, Fantasy, Horror, Thriller
Studio: Screen Gems
Director: Patrick Tatopoulos
Produced by: Len Wiseman, Tom Rosenberg, Gary Lucchesi, Skip Williamson
Written by: Len Wiseman, Danny McBride
Stars: Rhona Mitra, Bill Nighy, Michael Sheen, Kevin Grevioux, Shane Brolly
The Plot / Story: The prequel will trace the origins of the centuries-old blood feud between the aristocratic vampires and their onetime slaves, the Lycans. In the Dark Ages, a young Lycan named Lucian emerges as a powerful leader who rallies the werewolves to rise up against Viktor, the cruel vampire king who has enslaved them. Lucian is joined by his secret lover, Viktor's daughter Sonja, in his battle against the Death Dealer army and his struggle for Lycan freedom. (Wikipedia) (The Official Site)
Release Date: JANUARY 30th 2009
Listed as: Drama, Horror, Thriller
Studio: DreamWorks, Paramount Pictures
Director: Charles Guard, Thomas Guard
Produced by: Michael Grillo, Ivan Reitman, Tom Pollock, Walter F. Parkes, Laurie MacDonald, Riyoko Tanaka
Written by: Screenplay: Craig Rosenberg, Doug Miro, Carlo Bernard Original Screenplay: Kim Jee-Woon
Stars: Emily Browning, Arielle Kebbelm, Elizabeth Banks, David Strathairn, Maya Massar
The Plot / Story: Anna Rydell returns home to her father and sister, Alex, after spending time in hospital following the tragic death of her mother. Her recovery suffers a setback when she discovers her father has become engaged to her mother's former nurse, Rachael. That night, Anna is visited by the ghost of her mother, who warns her of Rachael's intentions. Together, Anna and Alex try to convince their father that his current fiancée is not who she pretends to be, and what should have been a happy family reunion becomes a lethal battle of wills between stepdaughters and stepmother. Based on the Korean move A Tale of Two Sisters (Wikipedia) (The Official Site)
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Manga Review: The Tarot Cafe'
The Tarot Café is a manga written and illustrated by Sang-Sun Park. In these books, you meet Pamela, a shop owner who reads tarot cards. Not too unusual of a story. However, her clients are very unusual. After midnight, she receives visits from many patrons of the supernatural world. Vampires, fairies, dragons, magical cats, and other mystical creatures come to Pamela for a reading, some tea, and advice. There is also an underlying plot about Pamela, and how each one of these supernatural guests is to pay her in pearls from a necklace. Once she gets all the pieces, it will lead her to find out the truth about her past. You will not be disappointed by the art which is a mix of goth loli, punk, and fantasy. Each volume has its distinct style. The first volume mixes art-deco art reminiscent of Erte’ with punk images. Now anyone who can do that successfully has to be on the right track. Every character also has a very distinct and original style. Whatever story the character is telling pulls you in so that when their reading is done, you’re wondering if they could be their very own manga star.
Volumes 1-5 are excellent. Reading these, you will meet many of Pamela’s interesting guests as well as learn about the café staff and some loiterers that always hang out there. Volume 6 threw me for a loop. Pamela leaves the café in search of some deep dark secret of her past. Because it is so different than the other books, I didn’t like it at first. Judged on its own, it is an interesting story, but pulls you out of the café into unknown, sometimes confusing territory. Volume 7 reined me back in with an excellent end to the tale, taking you through the underworld and a resolution to Pamela’s secret. The art in Volume 7 is amazing. You will see the underworld and all the creatures that thrive there including pits of bodies in pain, demons, and the pretty evil ones too. Each chapter is introduced with Gustav Klimt-style art work.
The Tarot Café series is very enjoyable as a story and a must for any artist. This full series is available at Amazon.com
Review: Death Note
Death Note is an intelligent tale about a Japanese student, Light, who finds a notebook dropped by a shinigami (demon). According to the rules, whoever holds the notebook is given the power to cause the death of anyone who is written in it as long as he/she can picture the face of the victim. If circumstances are not written in the book, the victim will simply pass away from a heart attack. If the circumstances of the death are written in, the victim will die exactly how it is written. Just like all magical tools of the underworld, Light learns to be careful what he wishes for. When Light writes his first circumstances in, he is not specific enough and causes injury to innocents involved in the accident. Things get tricky when special agent “L” is assigned to figure out who is mysteriously killing criminals. How is the culprit sneaking into jail cells without detection? Is someone drugging the criminal’s food?
Light, who starts as a superhero trying to rid the world of the worst criminals in jail, begins to turn evil as he kills people who may find him out and begins calling himself by the name “Kira” who is some kind of savior in the minds of Japanese citizens. It appears, though I haven’t read the other volumes yet, that the book is slowly eating away at his soul. Perhaps it’s the act of killing that is destroying his good nature or maybe the power of killing is turning him into a monster. Whatever the cause, Light—or Kira, allows the lines of justice to be blurred when he feels he may be found out.
His conversations with the shinigami, the demon who lost the death note, are entertaining. The demon in this story pretty much sits back and watches the destruction caused to this noble teen by his greed for justice. The shinigami’s explanation of hell and how the demons are all bored of using the Death Note is interesting.
I found this manga appealing and though the art is not traditional Goth-Lolita with the big dresses and curls, I found it beautiful nonetheless. The shinigami’s and their world are done in intricate drawings opposed to the straight lines of the human world. Excellent concept and I look forward to reading the other volumes that are out.
I’ve just recently heard of a Death Note movie. I haven’t been able to find too much about it except that there were two Death Note movies released in 2006 in Japan. The posters for these films are very exciting. Per Wikipedia, North American release for Death Note: The Last Name is slated for release in American theaters for two nights only, October 15th and 16th, 2008. A DVD release will soon follow. I also saw at imdb.com a Death Note movie quoting a release date of 2010. Perhaps an american remake?
Get your copy of the Manga here
For more information on the Death Note manga, anime, and live action movie, visit these sites:
Official Death Note Website http://deathnote.viz.com/
Death Note Movie at Wikipedia http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Death_Note_(film)
Death Note Anime TV http://www.deathnote.tv/
Death Note Movie Trailer (In Japanese) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tpnX9GEh4VM
Death Note 2: The Last Name Trailer (with English subtitles) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wwcLh94laeo
Harry Potter the Exhibition World Tour
Yes, you heard right they will be setting up an touring exhibit featuring the Harry Potter films. Why not include the books, I don't know. The project is in it's earliest development stages so they may go back and include in book stuff latter.
Harry Potter the Exhibition will be a 10,000 square foot exhibit featuring all kinds of stuff from the films. They are planning on premiering it in the spring of 2009 and running it for a 5 year tour appearing in over 10 cities around the world. That is not a lot of places especially for a world tour so hopefully they will add more cities to the schedule. For me that definitely means a road trip.
The exhibit is to feature authentic costumes, props and as worded in the press release "props and artifacts from environments." They do clarify that and it means stuff from the set like the Gryffindor common room and Hagrid's hut.
This sounds like a really neat exhibit to see, I can only hope that they would include in some book stuff, like maybe a display of the different cover art or some of the other books like The Tales of Beedle the Bard.
They do have plans to update the exhibit to include new materials introduced in the last two films.
Amazon Producing Movies
Amazon, a well known name as a store and a distribution source for entertainment: books, movies, and music will now produce a movie based on the fantasy novel The Stolen Child.
They have not decided whether this will be a direct to DVD project or if it will go out to the theaters but they are working with Fox to on the project.
Fox is financing the production, with Amazon agreeing to heavily push the film across its stable of Web sites (which include film database IMDb)
I wonder... if successful will Amazon take up the mantel / stay in the arena of making books into movies?
I am hopeful that this project will be better at maintaining the spirit and feel of the original book. It is not easy to translate between the two mediums since movies are mainly a visual and books allow for more time to really get into the causes and reasons. Maybe this passion will allow for better translation giving them a greater chance at hiring better script writers who can not only make compelling movie scripts but also keep the spirit of the book and the feel of the original text.