Thursday, January 31, 2008

Mega G.I.Joe News #2: Quaid is Hawk

I'm thrilled to announce that the legendary Dennis Quaid as General Clayton M. Abernathy, better known to the world as Hawk.

Hawk is my favourite G.I.Joe character who has gone through some pretty extraordinary evolutions in the past 25 years; beginning as a Colonel and field - commander of the Joes under General Flagg before being promoted to full commander of the unit, eventually achieving the grade of Lieutenant General before being crippled and confined to a wheelchair several years ago.

I've even adopted one of Hawk's mottos as one of my own; "Never ask of your men something you're not willing to do yourself," it's something that has served both me and my own men well as I'm sure they'll tell you.

Dennis Quaid is a remarkable actor that brings a wealth of acting talent to the role of Hawk. As someone said to me: "he's definitely got the quals", as Quaid has played soldiers, military officers, politicians, teachers, mentors and heroes; these experiences will all serve him well as Hawk.

I've also learned that the wonderful type-cast baddie Arnold Vosloo (left) will be the mysterious Zartan, master of disguise!

Quaid and Vosloo join Channing Tatum as Duke, David Murray as Destro, Sienna Miller as The Baroness, Ray Park as Snake Eyes, Rachel Nichols (right) as Scarlett, Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje as Heavy Duty, Said Taghmaoui as Breaker, Marlon Wayans as Ripcord and Byung-hun Lee as Storm Shadow.

Watch out for more news soon!

Wednesday, January 30, 2008

Mega G.I.Joe News #1: Larry Hama joins G.I.Joe

The creator of practically all the backgrounds for the G.I.Joe characters the one and only Larry Hama has joined the G.I.Joe movie as a creative consultant. Hama was a Vietnam war veteran and martial artist who wrote the legendary Marvel run of the G.I.Joe comic book from 1982 to 1995. He also wrote most of the File Cards found on the rear of G.I.Joe figures packaging which listed the character's Name, Rank, Serial Number, Speciality and a brief yet concise biography.

Hama has kept on top of all things G.I.Joe and most recently worked as a character consultant for the CGI animated movies and has written a number of comic books in the G.I.Joe universe in the past few years years.

This is the greatest endorsement that the production could get and I think that even though some of the casting choices for the movie won't completely thrill everyone, it will be easier to rest at night from now until the movie is released knowing that everything is happening under the watchful eye of the great Larry Hama.

Aliens vs Predator: Requiem "People are dying... we need guns!"

Thankfully the first "proper" movie of the year was not a let down. The sequel to the not-extremely-brilliant Alien Vs Predator directed by Paul W.S. Anderson, this movie picks up pretty much right where the last one left off and supersedes it magnificently.

Instead of being secluded away in some remote area of the antarctic, the action in this movie takes place in a quiet little Colorado mountain town, with all sorts of fodder for both the Aliens and the Predator to hack, slash, maul, skewer, eviscerate, dismember or disembowel. Please be warned that this movie has received a somewhat restricted rating mainly due to what happens to a hospital ward full of helpless pregnant women. Even children horrifically fall victim to the directorial majesty of The Brothers Strauss.

There's nothing better that I can say about this movie other than that there's enough Aliens Vs. Predator action on screen to satisfy any Aliens or Predator fan. There are many nods to graphic novel material which spawned the series, much more so than in the previous installment but it's not essential to have digested it to appreciated this balls-out combat movie. The role of the Predator here is fleshed out as we see a different side to their society and understand what's happening even though they have no dialog. The AvP action coupled with the humans unloading plenty of ammo at both menaces and the "satisfactory" explosions makes this an A-List flick in my book: The only one that really matters.

I will say the human characters are as lame as the previous installment with the exception of Reiko "24" Aylesworth's Kelly O'Brien, an Airborne soldier just returned home from deployment (complete with handy plot device #1: Night Vision Goggles) in time for the living nightmare to begin. We have a bad-boy gone legit (after time in prison) in the form of Dallas played by Steven Rescue-Me Pasquale who is far more clued in and more intelligent than John Ortiz' inept Sheriff character. Rounding out a cast of predictable sci-fi characters we also have Dallas' hot-headed teenaged brother who has a crush on a thoroughly unlikeable Barbie-whore who's only saving grace in the movie is that she strips off to almost nothing. This time there is no Gary Busey type character who has been tracking the Predators and knows something about them and none of the characters played by Danny Glover or Sanaa Lathan who "bond" with the beast and earn the respect of the Predator Elders - this is just sheer WAR and it's survival of the fittest!

A couple of major issues with costuming with this movie prevented it from getting the coveted "5-Star Plus" rating. A scene depicts Aylesworth's character returning home to her husband and daughter. Her uniform is clearly the USMC MCCUU (desert) but has US Army patches with most notably the 101st Airborne, sewn on it. It's not like the production didn't have access to the US Army's ACU as we saw the gloriously ineffective National Guard wearing them later in the movie. Also at the end of the movie we see an unnamed "Special Forces" type unit wearing the woodland variation of the MCCUU but had subdued US flag patches on their left shoulders, something the US Army doesn't even wear when stateside let alone Marines whatsoever. While these inexcusable errors didn't ruin the movie, it can't be called a masterpiece because of them.

Final Verdict: Excellent continuation to the Aliens and Predator sagas that changes some perceptions of the movies that have preceded this. It will satisfy any sci-fi action-junkies craving for what they desire most: This shit!

Colonel Creedon Rating: *****

Thursday, January 24, 2008

Star Trek Teaser Trailer Here!

The aforementioned Star Trek Teaser Trailer is now available. It was seen first by moviegoers to the great J.J. Abrams' Cloverfield on Friday; upon which many have said that the Trek teaser was the best thing about the movie - ouch! I shall reserve judgment until I see the movie for myself but before that: gasp in wonder at the trailer.

The Highest resolution I found is available at Movieweb here.

Bond 22: Quantum of Solace

Details of the new James Bond adventure were revealed today at Pinewood studios in London. Quantum of Solace sees 007 out for revenge on a mission that takes him to Austria, Italy and South America. Blonde Bond Daniel Craig will return after both harsh critics and indifferent cinema-goers hailed Casino Royale in 2006.

Craig said the cryptic title referenced how Bond's heart had been broken at the end of Casino Royale. "Ian Fleming had written about relationships," he explained. "When they go wrong, when there's nothing left, when the spark has gone, when the fire's gone out, there's no quantum of solace. And at the end of the last movie, Bond has the love of his life taken away from him and he never got that quantum of solace. So he's looking for revenge, you know, to make himself happy with the world again."

Michael G Wilson Bond Co-producer said the title was taken from a short story by Ian Fleming. "We thought it was an intriguing title and referenced what is happening to Bond and what happens in the film. But it the title also alludes to something else in the film," he added.

According to the synopsis, Bond girl Camille, played by Hitman's hot piece of ass Olga Kurylenko, leads the secret agent to Dominic Greene (Mathieu Amalric), member of a mysterious organization and a ruthless businessman, seeking to control huge natural resources. The plot follows on directly from Casino Royale, as Bond aims to uncover the truth about Vesper, the beauty who betrayed him. "James Bond is after revenge, and Camille is after revenge & They have slightly different goals, but in the end they are going to have to collaborate," Kurylenko told reporters.

Wilson said Quantum contained about twice as many action sequences as Casino Royale which was praised for relying less on gadgets and special effects and making Bond more realistic and vulnerable.

Quantum of Solace is due for release in theatres on November 7 this year.

Source: Yahoo, BBC News and my bud Barry!

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Obituary: Heath Ledger

Heath Ledger was found dead at a Manhattan apartment this afternoon in what appeared to be a possible drug-related death. The actor was discovered in one of the SoHo apartment's bedrooms at 15:31 p.m. An initial police report also cited by the New York Times said that foul play was not suspected and that pills had been found near Ledger's body.

A native of Australia, Ledger shot to fame as a teen heartthrob in 10 Things I Hate About You before graduating to more adult roles, most notably his Oscar-nominated turn in cowboy fag-fest Brokeback Mountain. Engaged to Dawson's Creek's Michelle Williams, the two had a kid before a split in recently.

I first noticed Ledger in The Patriot where he played Mel Gibson's character's eldest son Gabriel who joins the American forces fighting the British in the Revolutionary War and helps his father fight a guerrilla war after serving time as a British prisoner prisoner. He was later most adequate in a starkly contrasted role as William Thatcher in the slightly ridiculous lighthearted adaptation Geoffrey Chaucer's A Knight's Tale.

However it is only this year that he has completed the movie which he will be now be remembered for all time. In August 2006 I broke the news here that Ledger was to play The Joker in the Batman Begins sequel film The Dark Knight. His progress in the role was reported on 2IGTV in a number of episodes in 2007. It does appear that that he had finished filming on that and the movie is currently set for release this summer so there is no fear for a need for a "Brandon Lee" or worse an "Oliver Reed" substitute situation.

It's a true tragedy that such a promising career has been cut short so early. I'll leave the wild speculation and unsubstantiated theories as to why in the more than capable hands of the bottom-feeding "press".


Saturday, January 19, 2008

2IGTV Episode 54

In this, the first episode of 2008 we open with a high tech discussion about Apple, The Hi-Def format war and DRM.

We update you on the WGA strike, Wesley Snipes in court, South Korean pirates, Cruise and Scientology, the years upcoming movies and the US Presidential Election.

We also have exciting news on Star Trek and The A-Team and update you on some happenings in the 2IGTV forums.

All this and much more here.

Friday, January 18, 2008

First Picture of the new ENTERPRISE for J.J.'s STAR TREK!

This is it! It looks like they're building it on Earth which would be pretty dumb, but it still looks cool eh? Trailer coming soon.

Source: AICN

Wednesday, January 16, 2008

Who Will Play Boba Fett in the Star Wars TV Series?

Rick McCallum has said that the most fearsome bounty hunter Boba Fett will be a star of the Star Wars live action TV series and has speculated about who will play him. McCallum would apparently desire Daniel Logan who played the young Boba in Episode II to don the infamous Mandalorian armour.

Obviously there's no casting news yet on the most anticipated Television event of the decade as production won't actually begin for more than a year.

In an interview with Star Wars Insider, McCallum says: "The series will be about brand new characters, a group of people we haven't seen yet, except Boba Fett, who will be an instrumental part of it. The series will also showcase other bounty hunters." He says the series is about "what happens to an empire. It's a much darker, much more character-based thing. It's not as plot-driven [as the movies]." McCallum notes that the challenge they're facing at Lucasfilm is making the show "look like a feature on a television budget, with all new characters, new environments, new planets, and trying to keep the storyline alive for a lot of people."

God is planning on at least 100 episodes but McCallum is hopeful that it can extend to almost 400 episodes and may feature some of the more well known Expanded Universe characters like Mara Jade, Admiral Thrawn or Kyle Katarn.

The live-action series is expected to premiere by the end of 2009, following this year's debut of the new animated Clone Wars series.

Source: IGN, ISEB

Saturday, January 12, 2008

I Am Legend: Not Legendary.

I'm usually impressed with movies that paint a picture of reality that is vastly different to our own even if it's a somewhat bleaker setting such as this "virus has killed most of humanity" scenario but not with this movie. The idea here is that Will Smith is Dr. Robert Neville alone in NYC having an immunity to the virus and his only friends are his dog, some shop window mannequins and his M4 Carbine. He spends his days hunting what the surviving members of the human race became upon being infected; Vampire-Zombies (for want of a better term), capturing them and experimenting on them in the hopes of finding a cure.

Smith is a competent actor, there's no evidence of the Fresh Prince or Wikki Wah-Wah West here as he pro trays a man who has been without human interaction for three years and is going a little bit loco. Even though his performance is excellent; Smith's character is badly written. A point is made that he's sure there is no God and he is portrayed of being devoid of spirituality or even at this stage, hope itself. Yet he speaks of Bob Marley in such a way that it reveals an allegiance that transcends mere religion, this paradox is just one example of how badly written this movie is- the culprit: one Akiva Goldsman responsible for I, Robot, The DaVinci Code and the greatest celluloid travesty of all time: Batman And Robin.

There isn't much in the way of supporting characters, these are mainly relegated to scenes of life before and during the outbreak which is expertly produced generating a real sense of fear and interpretation and just enough to set the tone of the movie. While the virus infects humans and turns them into "Vampbies" they attack and kill others before they are infected thus explaining why everyone is gone. The creatures are created entirely by CGI and that unfortunately heavily detracts from the movie's impact and indeed it's rating as the CGI is surprisingly poor for 2007 and somewhat unnecessary too as the "Vampbies" are basically human and would have been far more realistic as humans in make up.

This is one of those movies that I'm fairly apathetic towards. It was neither brilliant or shite. It fits nicely into that middle ground of movies where you would watch it if it was on TV, but you could be doing something else at the time as well.

Final Verdict: Will Smith is excellent. There are some good action sequences but ultimately this movie should greatly fail to make too much of an impression on anyone. Overall, a poor start to what looks like a promising year.

Colonel Creedon Rating: ***

Monday, January 07, 2008

Hitman was not a hit, man!

I'm a little behind in my reviews I know. I'm trying to assimilate all the material I missed from 2007 before I do the 2007 Whopper Awards (which may actually replace the Oscars this year due to the WGA strike). Chronologically, the final movie released in 2007 and thus elegable for consideration is Hitman.

This was a movie that was followed both on the 2IGTV website and on the 2IGTV show itself. I expect nothing from a video game franchise to a movie no matter what the budget nor who the producer, director or the cast is. And this movie won't change my opinion of that whatsoever. It's shit, but by God it's truly magnificent shit and has earned a place in my DVD collection.

In Hitman, Timothy Olyphant takes on the role of Agent 47 a character butchered for his big screen outing. Somehow Olyphant (39) looks about fifteen with the shaved head. How an accomplished actor from Deadwood (or even his performance in Die Hard 4.0) could somehow loose almost all his acting talent for this movie, I do not know. I don't blame him entirely however as the movie had an idiotic first-time* clueless director in the form of Xavier Gens, yes, a frog!

The story was a load of hogwash and I'm not even going to try to explain it here as that would dignify it. The plot has more holes than my assault rifle target after a day on the range and if you were paying attention to it (and I'm not saying you should) you'll be left with a few questions once the end credits begin to scroll. "What the fuck happened to the guy in the bath?" is a biggie! Poor Skip Swordfish Woods probably didn't have a lot of material to work with as the 47 character by definition is an emotionless single-minded killing machine far better suited to the gaming world than on a movie screen where he essentially has to get ideas, form relationships and be "human". I hope Mr. Woods will be more faithful to the G.I.Joe characters he's written for the movie of that franchise.

I hear people asking now: "But Creedon, why are you going to add this to your DVD collection?" Well it's quite simple really, for all it's many faults. I thoroughly enjoyed this movie. As I said; I don't expect much from video game translations, so with that in mind when you do get some serious action, no matter how uncohesive it may be, with fantastic explosions, juicy on-screen death, a healthy use of automatic weapons and of course when a hot piece of ass like Olga Kurylenko gets her kit off for an unnecessary amount of time, then you just have to say: "I wanna see that again!"

Final verdict: A dumb movie aimed at dumber people who don't know that London is in England (you'll get that joke if you see the movie), it should have had more heavy-metal tunes instead of dialog, yet it will satisfy "longings for tough-guy posturing, sadistic violence, blatant misogyny and incoherent plotting"**, bring it on!

Colonel Creedon Rating: ****1/2

* He only directed French shit which doesn't count in the real world.
** Quoted from Jeffrey Westhoff, Northwest Herald (Crystal Lake, IL).

Thursday, January 03, 2008

Iron Man Game

I so designate 2008 as THE YEAR OF IRON MAN!!!

Sega has unleashed the first trailer for the Iron Man video game based on Jon Favreau’s IRON MAN movie coming this year from Paramount!

See the different Iron Man suits in action including a glimpse of the infamous "Stealth Armour" which is apparently a "feature" of the MKIII suit. The detail of the graphics is amazing!

Sadly, traditionally, tie-in games of major movies usually turn out to be complete shit so while I'm not expecting much in the way of gameplay, it certainly looks like the most spectacular-looking movie-tie-in game ever.

Source: ISEB