Thursday, December 30, 2010

Star Wars Holiday Special – The 5 Minute Abridged Version

2011 Movie Preview: All the upcoming films we're most excited about

From cinemablend, We’re ready to tie a bow on 2010 and start looking forward to the new year, a new year full of movies which are bound to be better than The Bounty Hunter, even if it’s only by accident. With that positive outlook on what another year of movie watching can bring, we got together and took marksman-like aim at the future, to create the definitive list of the new releases we’re most looking forward to in 2011.

You’re about to encounter that upcoming movies list with our brief attempts to explain why we hope the film might be worth our time, along with a lesser listing of movies you might be interested in, but that we don’t care enough about to bother writing anything for you. That’s alright, you don’t need us. For more detailed information on any of the upcoming movies below, including release dates full casts lists and even trailers, simply click on the movie title. Flex your movie watching muscles and start picking out what you’ll want to watch in 2011 right now.

See full list here

Moron Hit By Car Playing Real Life 'Frogger'

From geekology,

Worst player ever.

Some moron got hit by a car and sent to the hospital after attempting a game of real-life Frogger. Unsurprisingly to those of us who think people are inherently dumb as shit, this is not the first time it's happened. Game over, man!

Authorities said the 23-year-old man was taken to a hospital in Anderson after he was struck at around 9 p.m. Monday.

Before he was hit, police say the man had been discussing the game with his friends.

Chief Jimmy Dixon says the man yelled "go" and darted into oncoming traffic in the four-lane highway.

No charges are expected against the driver.

Sure there are no charges expected for the driver, but what about awards? That driver took a proactive approach to Darwinism and I demand he be rightfully compensated. Unless it was a woman, in which case PAY ATTENTION TO THE ROAD, YOU'RE GONNA KILL SOMEBODY!

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Which Avenger Will Reportedly Cameo in ‘Thor’?

From slashfilm, has established a pattern of having characters show up in small roles before playing a bigger part in later films. The obvious precedent is that Samuel L. Jackson showed up at the end of Iron Man as Nick Fury, then had a larger role in Iron Man 2, and he’ll likely be an even bigger presence in The Avengers. Now there’s word that another Avenger (not Nick Fury) is going to be seen briefly in Marvel’s upcoming Thor. We’ve kept the info after the break so those who want to be surprised don’t have to know too much up front.

The Wrap says that Jeremy Renner will appear in Thor as Hawkeye. In some ways this isn’t new, because Jeremy Renner himself mentioned last year that he expected Hawkeye to show up in Thor. But he went back on that statement not long afterward, noting that he wasn’t even cast in the role at the time. But he was then cast as Hawkeye, fulfilling his first statement, and the idea that he’d be in Thor lingered as a possibility.

So this is the first vague confirmation that the cameo will be in the movie. The Wrap quotes a source who has seen an early cut of Thor, but there isn’t any specific information about how Hawkeye will appear, or in what context.

The Most Disappointing Movies Of 2010?

From cinemablend, Disappointment is all based on perspective and expectations. The first time I tried the Baconator from Wendy’s, I was extremely disappointed. This was because I love Dave Thomas cheeseburgers, as well as bacon, and adding a lot of each of those elements seemed like it should have created the greatest fast food sandwich ever. In reality, it was just good. There was no special sauce taking it to a new level or hidden ingredient to differentiate it from any other Wendy’s cheeseburgers with bacon. Now that I’m a little more detached from the situation, I’ve realized the Baconator should continue existing. Likewise, some of the films on this list were worth making. Even if they never quite achieved what we expected, they still were good enough to at least entertain us. Then again, some of the films on this list suck. At one point or another, we thought they had something to offer, but in the end, they’ll go down merely as disasters.

See list here

Holy macaroni! How did we live without Angry Birds?

Julie and I downloaded this over the weekend and I for one am CRAZY about it. You know how when you've been playing lots of Tetris you see it happening behind your eyes? Angry Birds does that.

I saw someone playing on an iPad a few weeks ago and I thought "meh." But actually playing it is rad and totally addictive. It's totally raddictive. The kinematics of the bird ballistics and the stuff falling down is intensely satisfying, and the sound effects are hilarious. Here, watch.

As the game progresses you get different birds with strange new skills for knocking shit over (I've been ploughing through levels and seeing these red birds solo is actually kind of quaint).

Death to pigs!

The Empire Strikes Back added to National Film Registry

From iwatchstuff, Fear not that your children may never get the chance to see the beloved precursors to such modern terribles as The Phantom Menace, Scary Movie 3, and Steve Martin in The Pink Panther. The Empire Strikes Back, Airplane!, and The Pink Panther were among the films today added to the National Film Registry for preservation (in case all our Blurays, VHS tapes, and Netflix queues are ever destroyed by terrorists). In addition to those three films--all of which were clearly remembered for inclusion because of some recent deaths--the ambulance chasers over at the Library of Congress also notably selected McCabe and Mrs. Miller, The Exorcist, All the President's Men, Malcolm X, A Tree Grows in Brooklyn, Grey Gardens, George Lucas's student short Electronic Labyrinth: THX 1138 4EB, and other films they deemed "culturally, historically or aesthetically significant"--which, may I remind you, is a designation they just gave to a film with a running gag about the word "surely" being confused with the name "Shirley." Progress!

See full list here

Jon Favreau Calls Summer 2011 A Box Office ‘Bloodbath’

The summer of 2011 is absolutely loaded with massive, big budget films including huge sequels Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2, Transformers: Dark of the Moon, Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides, and The Hangover 2, new superhero films like Green Lantern, Thor and Captain America: The Last Avenger, kids fare such as Cars 2, Kung Fu Panda: The Kaboom of Doom and Smurfs 3D and don’t forget Super 8, Rise of the Apes, X-Men: First Class and more.

Read more here

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Robert De Niro Tops List of Most Movie Deaths

From worstpreviews, [possible spoilers if you haven't seen some of the films] ChaCha put together a list of actors who have died the most in their movies. Topping the list is Robert De Niro with fifteen deaths, including ones in "Cape Fear," "Frankenstein" and "Jackie Brown."

Bruce Willis also made the list and was actually killed twice by his ex-wife Demi Moore in "Mortal Thoughts" and "Charlie's Angels: Full Throttle." Brad Pitt is in top ten as well, but his deaths are a bit odd. He died in "Cool World," but returned as an animated character. He died in "Fight Club," but never actually existed. And he died in "Meet Joe Black," but came back as Death.

The list is far from perfect, since it doesn't include Leonardo DiCaprio (The Departed, Titanic, Blood Diamond), Kevin Spacey (Se7en, American Beauty, LA Confidential), Samuel L. Jackson (Deep Blue Sea, True Romance, Jurassic Park), or John Travolta (Pulp Fiction, Face/Off, The Punisher).

Plus, there are a bunch of movies missing for Gary Oldman and Sean Bean. Check out ChaCha's list below and let us know what should be added:

* Robert De Niro (15 films): Bloody Mama, Bang the Drum Slowly, Mean Streets, Brazil, The Mission, Cape Fear, This Boy's Life, Mary Shelley's Frankenstein, Heat, The Fan, Jackie Brown, Great Expectations, 15 Minutes, Hide and Seek.

See full list here

Apple Patents Holographic TV Screen Technology

From worstpreviews, Apple was just granted a patent for a new type of display screen that produces three dimensional images without the need for glasses. The technology could be used to produce new types of televisions, computer monitors and cinema screens.

The patent claims this technology would also create images that appear to be holographic. It states: "An exceptional aspect of the invention is that it can produce viewing experiences that are virtually indistinguishable from viewing a true hologram."

The system presents images taken from slightly different angles to the right and left eye, creating a stereoscopic image that the brain interprets as three-dimensional. It allows the observer to move around a virtual object and top observe multiple sides from different angles.

Some are claiming that Apple will use the technology for a 3DTV projection system, while others believe it will be used for a new 3D photo or 3D tablet.

Can you spot the 50 hidden movie titles?

Give up? Get the answers here

Monday, December 27, 2010

Best Snowmen Ever!

See the rest here.

“You Look Like Shit” – The Most Overused Line In Movies?

From slashfilm, Some of the most common phrases used in movies probably include ‘I’ve got a bad feeling about this”, “It is what it is”, “Let’s get outta here!”, “look at me, stay with me”, “Excuse me, is this seat taken?”, “What did I miss?”, “We got a situation here”, “You’re in the wrong place at the wrong time”, “You have no idea what you’re dealing with” and “you look like shit!” YouTube user Hollywoodvideoclips decided to create a video compilation of films which feature the last of those lines — “you look like shit!” The video montage is almost five minutes in length and features over 125 movies.

Sunday, December 26, 2010

Box office report: 'Little Fockers' is No. 1

Viewers wanting to spend the holidays with a dysfunctional family other than their own helped secure Little Fockers the top spot. But even a significant boost on Christmas Day couldn’t keep the comedy from under-performing, pulling in $34 million over the weekend and taking its five-day cume up to $48 million. Not terrible numbers by any means, but definitely not as high as Universal was hoping. And with a B- CinemaScore rating, it is unlikely the threequel will end up coming close to the $279.3 million total gross of its predecessor, Meet the Fockers.

The real success story of the weekend was True Grit, which took a six-shooter to expectations and landed itself a nice No. 2 spot with $25.6 million. That’s nearly double the studio’s original estimate and marks the biggest opening ever for a Coen Bros. film, trampling Burn After Reading’s $19.1 million. It is also the biggest first weekend for a Western since 1997’s Wild Wild West. (It’s undoubtedly a more respectable entry in the genre than that wild wild mess, nabbing a B+ CinemaScore grade from audiences and, surprising considering the type of film it is, an A- from those under 25.) If nothing else, this blustery Christmas weekend showed that revenge, or at least a revenge-fueled Western, is a dish best served cold.

True Grit is followed by TRON: Legacy, which has by now downloaded about $88.3 million into Disney’s coffers. The digitized sequel will have to keep going strong if it hopes to stay in the black considering its sizable budget. The Chronicles of Narnia: The Voyage of the Dawn Treader and Yogi Bear round out the Top 5, showing that families looking for wholesome entertainment had no problem choosing something a few weeks old over the stale-on-delivery Gulliver’s Travels, which debuted at No. 7 with a Lilliputian $7.2 million. And in limited release, awards-buzz films did well. The King’s Speech, which experienced its first major expansion, received a quite eloquent $4.6 million in 700 theaters, giving it a $6,511 per-screen average.

1. Little Fockers: $34 mil
2. True Grit: $25.6 mil
3. TRON: Legacy: $20.1 mil
4. The Chronicles of Narnia: The Voyage of the Dawn Treader: $10.8 mil
5. Yogi Bear: $8.8 mil

Lost ALF bloopers feature racist slurs

Holy crap! Boston, NYC face blizzard warnings as storm system barrels north

(CNN) -- Snow fell in parts of the southeast Saturday, the leading edge of a powerful storm system that has prompted blizzard warnings in New York City and Boston and threatened to cause major travel headaches at the tail end of the holiday week.
The National Weather Service has issued a blizzard warning for the New York City metropolitan area, from northeast New Jersey through Newark and New York, and including the entirety of both the Long Island and Connecticut coasts of the Long Island Sound. That warning is in effect between 6 a.m. Sunday and 6 p.m. Monday.

Forecasters predict between 11 to 16 inches of blowing snow in much of that region, bringing visibility to near zero at times. Sustained winds as strong as 30 miles per hour could hit Sunday night, with gusts up to 55 mph in parts of central and eastern Long Island.

And, starting at noon Sunday and extending through 6 p.m. Monday, a similar warning is out for all of Rhode Island and most of eastern Massachusetts. Parts of that region could see as much as 20 inches of snow, with strong winds contributing to near blinding travel conditions and likely significant power outages.

Friday, December 24, 2010

Merry Christmas, Happy Holidays etc..etc..

Love, The Mr. DCD, Jake and Maggie xoxo

Finally! 2001: A Space Odyssey action figure

Product Features

Properly proportioned to those in the movies 2001 and 2010 (1:4:9 - the squares of the first 3 integers)

Made of semisynthetic, organic, amorphous, solid materials (AKA plastic)

Zero (0) points of articulation

May cause strange magnetic fields, action figure evolution, seeing things filled with stars, and/or more (or it might just sit on your desk doing nothing)

Dimensions: .75" x 3" x 6.75"

Get yours for the Kubrick fan in your life at


While cruising around town with Whirlygirl to pick up last minute Christmas gifts, we stumbled across this crazy 80s song by "Captain Sensible", which just might be the most ridiculous song I've ever heard. I like to believe that I'm familiar with all music to come out of the New Wave decade but every once in a while my 80s station surprises me. Whirly insisted that we check You Tube to see if a video exists and sure enough one does. Enjoy!

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Laurie From ‘That 70s Show’ Looks Like This

From ew, Lisa Robin Kelly, who played Laurie, Eric Foreman's sister, on 'That '70s Show,' has been charged with drunk driving. She was arrested in North Carolina in August after being pulled over by police on suspicion of being under the influence of alcohol. According to TMZ, Kelly has pled guilty to driving while intoxicated. She was sentenced in November to 12 months of unsupervised probation. She was also ordered to pay a fine.

Kelly starred in over 50 episodes of 'That '70s Show.' She was mysteriously let go and replaced after the fifth season and hasn't done anything significant since then, according to her profile page on IMDB.

Kelly's physical appearance has changed dramatically since she was last seen on the show. The former blonde beauty had messy hair and looked bedraggled in her mugshot.

Tron Guy Forced To Wear Fashions from Outside ENCOM Mainframe in Minnesota Theater

From iwatchstuff, If you live in Minnesota, and own an elaborate homemade Tron costume you've been planning to festively wear to a showing of the new film, take note: you may be turned away. One such Minnesota resident, internet phenomenon Tron Guy (né Jay Maynard), thankfully had the foresight to call ahead to his local theater before showing up to Tron: Legacy in his signature spandex outfit, and the management was reportedly "adamant" he would not be admitted in the suit. If not then, then when IS it appropriate to wear an elaborate homemade Tron costume, huh, theater management?

According to the TMZ story, Tron Guy speculates it may be that the costume was "too distracting," which probably does have something to do with it. After all, once you let one guy in wearing a lighted suit that reveals the rough form of his genitals, where do you draw the line?

You're Getting 'The Room' in 3-D

From iwatchstuff, James Cameron isn't the only director having a love affair with 3-D. Tommy Wiseau is loving it, too! In an interview with EW, the auteur behind The Room explained that he's "obsessed about 3-D right now, if you ask me," and revealed plans to convert his cult "black comedy" into three dimensions, thus eliminating The Room's least problematic removal from reality.

Apparently unable to just merge the footage he shot with two cameras mounted side-by-side into a stereoscopic image, Wiseau went on to say the conversion process is "very detail-oriented," but that we should see the results in theaters by late 2011 or early 2012, with a Blu-Ray release to follow. Finally, visual depth between Lisa and the inexplicable spoon art! Also: Wiseau's wan, dimpled ass cheeks in 3-D, as he confirmed, "My bottom will have to be in 3-D because I’m not changing anything." Nor should you, Tommy.

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Christmas Tips

Boba Fett Got Dissed

What happens when your Star Wars themed wedding is crashed by the real Boba Fett? Apparently, if your the bride you get really pissed. Perhaps the groom should have thought on it a bit longer before popping the question.

Read the whole story at Digital Monkey Box:

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

The Lost 'Tron' Holiday Special

From iwatchstuff, Had Tron spawned a holiday-themed television special, rather than a sequel almost 30 years later, this is exactly what it would have been. Except Rip Taylor would have looked a little younger, because did I mention Rip Taylor is in this? He sure is. Who else would bring the cyberconfetti?

Monday, December 20, 2010

The Case of the Bloody Iris


Landord Andrea Barto is desperate to get tenants for his apartment building after a murder in the elevator gives the place a bad rap. In an attempt to fill the vacancies he lets an apartment at no cost to a gorgeous model hoping her presence will attract others. Unfortunately the model is also murdered almost immediately after moving in. The persistant Andrea tries again offering the apartment to yet another model, Jennifer along with her friend Marilyn. The serial killer wastes no time with an attempt on Jennifer's life but is interrupted before the deed is done. Everyone inhabiting the building along with Andrea Barto become suspects in the investigation.

Serial killer? Hah! I fart in his general direction.

I really enjoyed this one. A typical '70's giallo filled with suspicious people and unintentional humor. It also has one of the best falling death scenes. Very entertaining. Here's a montage of zoom-ins someone had the brilliance to put together.

Don't you just love how fashion conscious everyone is in these Italian flicks. Even the detectives are at the height of fashion in their terrific trench coats and fedoras.

Kill By Inches


So I have stumbled onto some seriously weird flicks this year and this one is right up there on my list. It had the same disconcerting effect that the film Pi had on me. Thomas Klamm is a young taylor aspiring to reach the level of excellence that his esteemed father held before him. He has one problem though, his measuring is inaccurate. His sister Vera, a first class seamstress discovers his weakness and berates him into madness. Thomas' madness leads him to murder.

Vera is a bitch and if you ask me the whole family is quite mad. As a matter of fact the entire tayloring industry is immersed in weirdness, at least according to this film anyway. It's no wonder Thomas is a bag of nerves, he is expected to take accurate measurements solely by eying the client. Each time he is off even the slightest bit his domineering father and raging bitch of a sister humiliate the crap out of him right in front of the client. It's no wonder why Thomas loses his squash. If you're into slow descents into madness with a large dose of strange then by all means watch this film.

Spockin' Around the Christmas Tree

From toplessrobot, Rob is off experiencing Tron: Legacy post-coital bliss, I thought I'd kickstart your day with this ad for Hallmark's Star Trek Shuttlecraft Galileo Christmas ornament from 1992. (Which I shamefully admit to have hanging on my own tree at this very minute). There's a great bit of nostalgia to be found in the above video, which brings to mind a bygone era when seemingly every commercial on TV featured Trek actors hawking shit. Sigh. And does anyone else think that Spock would probably find the notion of decorating Christmas trees to be quite illogical? Hmm...

Sunday, December 19, 2010

Watch Robocop Save Pee-Wee Herman During Oscars

From worstpreviews, Now that we're getting closer to the Oscars, it's time to look back on one of the award show's best moments, which is back in 1989 when Robocop stepped in to save Pee-Wee Herman. For some reason, Herman was flying around and Robocop fired lasers instead of bullets.

Saturday, December 18, 2010

DVD extra: Return to Moonbase Alpha with 'Space: 1999'

By Steve Jones USA TOAY

Back in 1975, the original moon landing was fresh enough in people's mind that they liked to speculate about the possibility of lunar living by the end of the 20th century. But by the time that momentous occasion actually arrived, people were either sweating the Y2K computer virus or trying to finagle an invite to wherever Prince was partying.
As it turned out, those far-off fantasies were a whole lot more fun than the ultimate reality. The seven-disc Space: 1999: The Complete Season One (2010, A&E Home Entertainment, not rated, $100), which arrives for the first time on Blu-ray this week, is a case in point. It coincides with the 35th anniversary of the cult classic by British TV producer Gerry Anderson, the man behind those 1960's marionette adventure series Fireball XL5, Thunderbirds and Captain Scarlet and the Mysterons

The 24 Space: 1999 episodes are uncut and have been digitally restored in high definition with newly recorded surround sound mixes. Oscar winner Martin Landau and three-time Emmy winner Barbara Bain star as Commander John Koenig and Dr. Helena Russell in this drama about the marooned 311-member colony of Moonbase Alpha.

They voyage across the stars on what's left of the moon after a thermonuclear explosion at a waste dump blasts the orb out of Earth's orbit. Landau and Bain, who were married from 1957-1993 had also starred together on Mission: Impossible as master of disguise Rollin Hand and femme fatale Cinnamon Carter. They also paired up in the 1981 made-for-TV film, The Harlem Globetrotters on Gilligan's Island.

Space: 1999 shared its overarching meet-the-aliens plot with other shows like Lost in Spaceand Star Trek, but it was much more serious in tone. Anderson was greatly influenced by Stanley Kubrik's 2001: A Space Odyssey and it showed in the high production values. Special effects director Brian Johnson would later do visual effects on Ridley Scott's Aliens and George Lucas's Star Wars: Episode V —The Empire Strikes Back. The show also was praised for its progressive social and metaphysical themes, though critics — including sci-fi writer Isaac Asimov, who reviewed the show in 1975 for The New York Times— questioned the scientific plausibility and possibility of some aspects of the show. Not that it really mattered much to avid followers.

What will matter to fans aside from the pristine quality of the Blu-ray set, is that it is organized sequentially, so that the story unfolds logically. When the show originally aired in syndication during the '70s and '80s, episodes often were shown sporadically or in random order. The new set's bountiful extras include commentary by Anderson on the pilot episode, Breakaway, and also Dragon's Domain, HD image galleries of rare stills, and gum and cigarette cards, an interview with his co-producer and wife, Sylvia Anderson, and alternative opening and closing titles.

17 Minutes of Lost ’2001: A Space Odyssey’ Footage Found

From slashfilm, Almost like discovering a monolith buried underground, Warner Brothers recently found 17 minutes of lost footage from Stanley Kubrick‘s masterpiece 2001: A Space Odyssey in a salt-mine vault in Kansas. But before you go and drop acid in anticipation of an extended cut of the film, consider the slippery slope this footage constitutes. One, just because the footage was found doesn’t necessarily mean it’s going to make it into the public eye. Two, Kubrick himself reportedly cut the footage from the film because he felt it created pacing issues. And three, the film is just about perfect as is, do you really want to screw it up?

Hit the jump for more details on the footage as well as what it might contain.
The Film Stage first alerted us to the news of this footage. They point us to a reports from Forgotten Silver and Blastr about an event in Toronto where Douglas Trumbull and David Larson, who were working on the now canceled documentary 2001: Beyond the Infinite: The Making of a Masterpiece, mentioned the footage had been found in perfect condition. Though they weren’t sure what the plans for the footage are, they did show images of never before seen scenes that will be in an upcoming photo book. It was unclear if these images were from the found footage or not.

According the 2001 IMDB page, when the film premiered in 1968, it ran 160 minutes. Kubrick then went in and trimmed a good 19 minutes or so. It’s assumed this would be the footage that was found in Kansas. Here’s what the IMDB says was cut:

Some shots from the “Dawn of Man” sequence and a new scene was inserted where an ape pauses with the bone it is about to use as a tool. The new scene was a low-angle shot of the monolith, done in order to portray and clarify the connection between the man-ape using the tool and the monolith.

Some shots of Frank Poole jogging in the centrifuge.

An entire sequence of several shots in which Dave Bowman searches for the replacement antenna part in storage.

A scene where HAL severs radio communication between the “Discovery” and Poole’s pod before killing him. This scene explains a line that stayed in the film in which Bowman addresses HAL on the subject.

Some shots of Poole’s space walk before he is killed.

While none of that sounds particularly exciting, new Kubrick is new Kubrick and it would be pretty cool for this footage to make its way onto some sort of epic, mega Blu-ray release one day. Still, I don’t know if I’d want to see it edited into the film. Kubrick cut it, why would anyone want to go against his wishes? But, if there is any money to be made from this footage, Warner’s will surely find a way.

Friday, December 17, 2010

Cruise Into Terror (aka Voyage into Evil)

(1978) **1/2

"They say it all started in Egypt 2000 years ago. Maybe it did. Maybe it didn't. An Egyptian tomb at the bottom of the Gulf of Mexico? Sounds ridiculous, doesn't it? But I'm recording the events as they happened... though there's no way I can record the human terror of those bizarre few days..." - Captain Andrews

JSP: When JPX told me about this shark/Mummy/Devil TV movie and his plans to use his Love Boat action figures in his review to compensate for the lack of available online pictures, I had no choice but to get in on the action. Hence this joint review. Yes, that's right - my brother has the complete set of Love Boat action figures and it's ok to be jealous. JPX, would you be so kind as to summarize the plot?

JPX: Captain Andrews is dismayed to learn that he must take 8 passengers from an overbooked cruise liner onto a crappy boat called the Obeah. His attempts at protesting this gross injustice fall on deaf ears as his boss essentially says “Take this job or shove it!” Moments later his boss is crushed by boxes, accident or harbinger of terror?

Joining Captain Andrews crew on this ship of doom is Nathan the likable African American porter (don’t get too attached) and lady-killer/first mate Simon (Dirk Benedict).

Passengers include archeologist and bible scholar, Dr. Isaac Bakkun, uptight workaholic Neil Barry and frustrated wife Sandra, hot Judy and her homely friend Debbie, the fire and brimstone Reverend Charles Mather (John Forsythe) and his sexually frustrated younger wife, Lil, and mathematician Matt Lazarus.

As the voyage commences the passengers get to know each other quickly. Apparently Dr. Bakkun is known for his research and is regarded as a bit of a kook because of his laughable theory that the Egyptians sailed to South America and founded the Mayan civilization 2000 years ago. The professor’s evidence for his theory is a chunk of ancient papyrus he found in Egypt, which suggests that Cleopatra VIII built a tomb "where the sun hits the sea". If Dr. Bakkun can find the tomb, it will prove his theory that the Mayans were really Egyptians (?). The good professor is ridiculed by the others for this hogwash.

JSP: This concept was basically a hilariously lazy way to slap a Mummy's curse storyline into the mix. It works because Dr. Bakkun sounds so damn sure of himself when he's spouting his nonsense.

JPX: Meanwhile as Simon and Judy get down to business with a lot of double entendres always-a-bridesmaid Debbie takes a walk on the deck by herself. Initially frightened by a cat and later by a pair of red glowing eyes, Debbie manages to trip over the side of the boat where she hangs and screams until Simon rescues her.

The captain dismisses Debbie’s claims of experiencing the supernatural. This won’t be the first time that Debbie Downer is summarily dismissed.

JSP: Initially I felt sorry for Debbie because no one liked her, including the cat. However I quickly joined the "I hate Debbie" bandwagon after being subjected to her incessant negativity (and her Where's Waldo t-shirt didn't help her cause). Pay close attention to the scene towards the end when Judy reaches her pressure point, loses her cool and tears Debbie a new one.

JPX: The next day the captain grants a request to allow the weary travelers a bit of fun in the sun and some much needed diving.

Lazarus and Bakkun remain behind to debate pyramidology. This love fest is soon interrupted when Captain Andrews spies a shark trolling around the passengers hoping for a snack. After ordering everyone to swim back he inexplicably grabs a knife and dives in for the fight of his life. Lazarus also jumps into the drink (without a knife). He soon realizes the stupidity of his actions and swims back. Everyone survives, for now.

JSP: There' s a lot of sunbathing and underwater padding to carry you through the first 45 minutes. The shark attack is completely random and doesn't further the plot in any way but it's still cool (it's a shark attack).

JPX: Later following some navigational errors the ship stalls exactly on the site where Bakkun believes the lost civilization lies. After convincing the captain to let them dive again (!), the gang all agree to go on an archaeological expedition, except Reverend Mather who doesn’t wish to disturb the dead. After a brief search they locate proof of the professor’s theory, a small golden sarcophagus. Apparently the sarcophagus brings bad luck as poor Nathan learns the hard way.

Soon Simon declares that the ship engine is dead and all communications have been cut off. One by one the helpless passengers experience the wrath of the curse they unleashed.

JSP: The curse story plays itself quickly and (with another half hour to kill) it is revealed that the Devil walks among the passengers. The scientist and the reverend inevitably butt heads. The crew exchanges furtive glances to convey their distrust of one another.

Revealing anything more would be a great disservice but trust me when I tell you - the climax is grossly unsatisfying. Fortunately getting there (nowhere) is more than half the fun.

Thursday, December 16, 2010

League of Extraordinary Gentlemen: 1969

I have no idea if anyone is still following this franchise. I will admit I enjoyed the earlier installments better, but I'm excited about these pictures. The current story arc is a three-issue tale that spans 100 years with some of the same characters. As is typical when dealing with a graphic novelist with a long and respected body of work, the schedule is "when we get around to it" (the first issue, 1910, came out a year an a half ago, and issue #2 here was moved from last May to next year).

Whatever. Check out the new Nautilus! Click for bigness!

They Came Back (Les Revenants)

(2004) ** 1/2

What do you do when your family, friends, and fellow townspeople come back from the dead? Normally, you kill them to prevent them from eating your brains. But what do you do if they look exactly as they did before they died and they just want to resume their lives?

In They Came Back, the town holds meetings discussing the appropriate course of action. They decide to set up buildings where the walking dead await being claimed by their loved ones; though, as you can imagine, some people don’t want to claim them because frankly it’s pretty freaky, plus, though not discussed, I’m sure there were a few bad seeds that the families would have preferred had stayed deceased. While at these facilities the undead are put through a series of tests that shows they are slower mentally, but physically restless. Those who are claimed resume their lives. They go back to their former jobs despite the fact that their slow mental capacity hinders their performance. This is certainly an issue, but as the townspeople discuss, what else should they do with them. Those who are not claimed live in the facilities but their restlessness keeps them awake most nights and sometimes the guards have to shoot them with tranquilizers.

There are a few characters and their families that emerge as the main focus. There is the married couple that had lost their young son, the middle aged woman and her husband that had passed, and the old widow who had grieved the loss of his life long relationship with his wife. On one hand, they are ecstatic to have them back, but on the other, it’s a bit unsettling. It’s quite an adjustment to grieve for someone and then have him or her suddenly return to you one day with no explanation, not to mention, they are not exactly themselves and their restlessness is a source of trouble.

What can I say about this film. Intriguing concept, raises interesting questions, and successfully explores the grieving process; however, in the end it just doesn’t do it for me. It moves a bit slower than I would like. There is not even a spot of gore. Though, I could be okay with these two aspects if it weren’t missing something really major for me, and that is an explanation. I am by no means someone who needs everything described, I actually typically prefer the abstract, but I think the construction of this film called for more information, either that or it should have had a different ending. I’m not sure which would be preferable, I just know that the movie ended and I needed more, and either an explanation for why the dead suddenly returned or a different conclusion probably would have satisfied me.

Blake Edwards, 'Pink Panther' director, dies

From ew, Director Blake Edwards, who achieved massive success for helming the Pink Panther series starring Peter Sellers, has passed away, his rep confirms. The writer-director, who also brought Victor/Victoria, Breakfast at Tiffany‘s and 10 to the big screen, was 88 years old. Edwards, however, was most revered for his slapstick work, with 1963′s The Pink Panther and its sequels — 1975′s The Return of the Pink Panther, 1976′s The Pink Panther Strikes Again, 1978′s Revenge of the Pink Panther, 1982′s Trail of the Pink Panther, 1983′s Curse of the Pink Panther, and 1993′s Son of the Pink Panther — earning him a place amongst comedy’s greatest directors. He is survived by his wife, Victor/Victoria star Julie Andrews, and children.

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Will and Disgrace

Re-Animator musical in the works and no I'm not kidding

From Shock Till You Drop:

"Still enjoying the success and critical acclaim surrounding his stage production Poe with Jeffrey Combs, director Stuart Gordon is spearheading a new stage endeavor: Re-Animator: The Musical.

Said to be Gordon's next ambitious and "terrific" new production, sources who caught an early show said William Atherton and George Wendt knocked it out of the park in their respective roles as Dr. Hill and Halsey. A newcomer filled the shoes of Herbert West.

Re-Animator, of course, isn't the first genre film to make a leap from the screen to the stage. Evil Dead: The Musical, Night of the Living Dead: The Musical and even The Silence of the Lambs: The Musical have all garnered fans. We're hearing there's good reason to be excited for a crooning Re-Animator."

Octo sez: I don't know about you, but I'd probably rather screen a Marmaduke and Alvin and the Chipmunks double feature before watching a beloved horror flick turned all Sondheim-esque. And unlike some of us I like musicals sometimes.

Oddly enough I discovered this fact in a cool way. Tony Doublin, a regular figure in a lot of the stop-motion crews I've worked on, was talking about this at lunch yesterday. That was when he mentioned he did the special effects for Re-Animator, which was a surprise because I've known Tony for a while and never knew that. (His IMDb creds mention Bride but not the original, so I'm not sure how precise he was being.) Whichever movie it was, it got him tapped to handle the effects for the musical.

Apparently the buzz is good for the Poe play with Jeffrey Combs. I may check it out if it comes back.

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

The Yogi Bear ending you will never see

A.M. Awesome: Stunning Look Back At The Films Of 2010

From cinemablend, 2010 has been a year for user generated content. Can you count how many different versions of the Inception trailer there were? Probably not. The content is out there for aspiring young editors to have their fun with, and in 2010 they did. But this latest video, however, is the definitive project that if nothing else reminds us that we haven’t seen nearly as many movies this year as we should have.

YouTuber Gen I. has put together Filmography 2010, a six and a half minute montage of clips from an extraordinary amount of movies that have either been produced or distributed this year, though there is a little bleed from 2009 and 2011. The awesome collage references 270 films, all itemized and linked out HERE, and let me tell you, that’s a ton of flicks to try to find, rip, and organize into editable pieces. Bravo, Gen.

I must warn you all though. The best time to watch this is a time when you can grab a movie and relax on your couch for two hours. Watching this at work or right before is a bad, terrible idea. Now I’m stuck facing down an eight hour work day with no motivation to do anything but pop some corn and settle in with a long list of films I’ve missed this year. DAMN YOU YOUTUBE!...Anyway, enjoy.

Saturday, December 11, 2010

Christmas Pterodactyl, bitches!

I just keep watching this again and again, and I'm so psyched by all the buzz it's getting.

So much good stuff coming together here. The animator Drew rocked the HELL out of the move, and as I said before the painter Robyn turned it from a goofy looking puff bird into the awesome thing you see here. John Oliver's line read is hilarious, as are the reactions from Donald Glover and Chevy Chase. The sound design is perfect, and the idea of inserting a freaking pterodactyl into the middle of a Christmas fantasyland is pure genius.

None of that is me, but I did crank that puppet into being in two and a half days; I sculpted the head and cut the shape of the wings and fashioned its giant talons with my little handsies. And I'm pretty proud of myself.

Such a great project to be a part of. Woot.

Friday, December 10, 2010

More LEGO STOPMOTION Goodies For Octopunk: Apple Engineer Recreating 2000-Year-Old Computer Using Lego

This is unbelievably cool! An Apple Software Engineer (big surprise) named Andrew Carol has successfully recreated "the famous Antikythera Mechanism, created by ancient Greeks in 100 B.C. as a way of predicting astronomical events like eclipses" out of LEGO (as documented in a stop-motion film, no less). The interview is very interesting; it's a discussion that would be fruitful even if it was just an intriguing hypothetical in a discussion of machines and the guy hadn't actually gone ahead and done it (Using LEGO!!!) Counting gear teeth, no less...

Koko's Earth Control

This is one of those rare artifacts that shows off the particular ideosyncracies of two decades: a sublime 1927 Max Fleischer cartoon called "Koko's Earth Control" (starring Fleischer's ubiquitous Koko, who, along with his dog, routinely climbs out of the animator's inkwell)...and, 65 years later, a Liquid Television segment that featured a re-cut version of the cartoon with a stunning techno score.

I saw the Liquid Television version first, which was pretty mind-blowing, but I think the best thing to do is watch the original and then the re-do. Both decades are well-represented.

(This is sort of a shout-out to Octopunk whom I talked to about this specific piece of Liquid Television at some point. I can't remember if Octopunk saw this or not. I didn't get to watch your show but I will very soon!)


(2009) ***1/2

There is often a fine line between horror and science fiction which makes me hesitate before picking some films for Horrorthon. Pandorum was one of those films, it almost didn't make the cut but after dozens of creepy kids, slashers and haunted houses I was itching for something different. It didn't disappoint. Much like Alien, Pandorum delivers a fine blend of scifi and horror with the bonus of trained capable military types putting up a good fight.

Two astronauts (Dennis Quaid and Ben Foster ) awaken from hypersleep with total amnesia finding themselves adrift in a large space station. They don't know who they are or why they are there. As their memories begin to slowly reengage one of the men ventures into the seemingly deserted ship to attempt to restart the main reactor while the other remains in the bridge guiding him through. They soon discover that they are not alone, along with some fellow astronauts there are some massive bad ass creatures lurking about. It doesn't take long for them to realize that they are in deep shit.

One of the things I really appreciated with Pandorum is the level of realism taken into account while they are fighting the creatures. These things are big, strong and mean! In one scene it takes three guys to take down one of the creatures and let me tell you, they got their asses kicked doing it. Once the fight is over they notice several more creatures have arrived, they look at each other and say, “run!” I've read numerous mixed reviews on this film so I'd have to say it's just a matter of personal taste. I liked it, I thought the creatures were great, the effects were awesome and the plot was tense. It was exactly the kind of film I hoped it would be.

Accolades for Octo!

Check out EW's list of Top Ten Reasons to Love the Community Christmas Special:

1) Abed’s adapted Community credits!

2) Abed fondling snowman Chang.
Abed: I thought I made you?
Chang: Yeah. You made me need to cry in a shower tonight.

3) Abed’s use of the term “Troy soldier” — as all toy soldiers will henceforth be known.

4) Jeff in the Box.

5) All the music!! The episode was touted as the stop-motion episode, but who knew it’d double as a musical? Thank you, Abed.

6) The introduction of a new Christmas mascot that will go down in history with the holiday armadillo: the Christmas pterodactyl.*WHOOT!*

7) The fact that Planet Abed’s atmosphere was 7 percent cinnamon.

8 ) The tiny reaction of happiness on Abed’s face when Teddy Pierce admitted earnestly that his Christmas was going to be a sad one, too.

9) The first meaning of Christmas being season 1 of Lost! Abed: “It represents lack of payoff.”

10) Troy and Abed in stop motion!

YAY, for Octo!! You can read the rest here.

Mill of the Stone Women (Le Moulin Des Supplices)

(1960) *1/2

While interviewing the esteemed Professor Val in his secluded mill house located on an Island not far from Amsterdam, Hans learns of a hidden family secret and the truth about the stone women that inhabit the mill. Along the way he manages to be unfaithful to his girlfriend Lisa Lotta, the love of his life.

The trailer for this film is so misleading. It spouts that the Mill of the Stone Women, and I quote, “Is the entertainment event of a lifetime.” This is fizzelwork advertising at its best. The truth, Mill of the Stone Women is pretty lame, and a rip off of superior films, most notably Eyes Without a Face. My viewing experience was also frequently disrupted as it changed several times from French with English subtitles to terribly dubbed English.

Wednesday, December 08, 2010

See The Beast That Ate My Horrorthon tonight!

Tonight the episode of NBC's Community that I worked on is airing at 8 pm. WATCH IT OR DIIIIIIEEE.

Just kidding! But it is a cool show and the buzz on the spectacle is pretty great. I worked on the puppets, and was lucky enough to have a few of the fun projects handed to me. I made this robot body and the funky hat, but not the head. (Actually, there's a good chance I did cast the head and the flexible silicone hair, but I didn't sculpt the original.) I also made the Humbug and Christmas Pterodactyl (not pictured).

Hope you like it!