Freeze Frame: The “Locked Shots” of Guy Ritchie

By H. Perry Horton

A supercut of all the moments the director pauses to let us catch our breath.

Every action director has his or her trademark: Tony Scott likes color, Michael Bay likes explosions, James Cameron pushes the effects envelope, John Woo loves a good Mexican standoff gone haywire (and doves, many many doves), Kathryn Bigelow likes to use slow-motion in action sequences, and Guy Ritchie likes to freeze the action entirely in what video essayist Semih Okmen refers to as “locked shots.”

The purpose of such shots, besides a flourish of style, is to accentuate the action by pausing it, giving us in the audience an opportunity to catch our breath and process, even for just a moment, the hyperactivity we’ve witnessed before being flung right back into it. read more

Short of the Day: Sandman Gets Another Fan-Film Treatment in ‘Black Sand’

By H. Perry Horton

Finders aren’t keepers.

At the beginning of this month I brought you a fan-made Sandman movie called 24-Hour Diner; it wasn’t official but it was canon, and it had a stamp of approval from Neil Gaiman himself, Sandman’s creator, so it was a close to official as we’ve ever gotten. You guys loved it, so when I found the following in my inbox, I knew I had to pass it along as well.

It’s called Black Sand and it comes from writer-director Bernhard Pucher, who’s adapted his story from issue #3 of the Sandman Vertigo series, “Dream a Little Dream of Me.” In it, our hero Morpheus (Dream) is on a quest to regain his pilferer pouch of magical sand. Like the previous film, Pucher’s manages to capture the exact feel and aesthetic of Gaiman’s realm without the aid of extravagant effects, just good old-fashioned storytelling prowess. read more

Starz Developing Action Drama Black Samurai with Common and RZA

Starz Developing Action Drama Black Samurai with Common and RZA

Starz developing action drama Black Samurai with Common and RZA

Starz has announced today it is developing an action-drama series under the working title Black Samurai, starring Academy Award winner Common (John Wick 2, Suicide Squad, Selma) in the title role. The actor will also executive produce under his Freedom Road Productions banner with Wu-Tang Clan’s RZA (Kill Bill 1 & 2, American Gangster) and Mitchell Diggs will also executive produce for Wu Films. Jerry Bruckheimer Television will also executive produce the series.

Based on the Black Samurai novels written by Marc Olden, the series will follow the character of Robert Sand (Common), a highly-trained American Army Ranger whose life is transformed when he meets a legendary Japanese master who invites him to train as a samurai. After his beloved sensei and samurai brothers are killed by mercenaries, Sand is thrust on a worldwide journey of both revenge and self-discovery. read more

The Full American Horror Story: Cult Trailer is Here!

The Full American Horror Story: Cult Trailer is Here!

The full American Horror Story: Cult trailer is here!

FX has debuted the full American Horror Story: Cult trailer, which you can check out below before the new season debuts in September!

American Horror Story: Cult characters include Billy Eichner as Harrison Wilton, Alison Pill as Ivy Mayfair-Richards, Billie Lourd as Winter Anderson, Cheyenne Jackson as Dr. Rudy Vincent, and Colton Haynes as Detective Samuels. The season will also star Sarah Paulson, Evan Peters, Emma Roberts, and Adina Porter. Ryan Murphy previously revealed that Twisty the Clown from American Horror Story: Freak Show will return, and that Lena Dunham will have a role in one episode of the season. read more

Game of Thrones Explained: Arya vs. Sansa vs. Logic

By Neil Miller

Plus, three important details to remember as Game of Thrones goes forward.

Game of Thrones season 7 has us trapped in a struggle and we can’t break free. Sure, there’s a great war coming between the living and the dead. But for now, that’s just a smattering of terrible ideas (like “let’s go catch a zombie!”) The struggle in which we, the audience, are being held captive is the one that’s breaking apart sisterly bonds in Winterfell. Sisterly bonds that, from what we could tell previously, really weren’t there.

Yes, everyone is traumatized by what happened up North in “Beyond the Wall,” but I’ve already covered that. So I’d like to use this week’s column to talk about Sansa, Arya, and their befuddling war of words. As we’ve seen over the course of the season, their reunion was first tense, then warm, and now it’s become the show’s only viable political maneuvering plot. Littlefinger led Arya right to evidence that Sansa was once coerced into writing nice things about Joffrey, which means the two sisters must now be at odds. Or do they? read more

Preacher Episode 2.10 Annotations: Everyone’s Got Dirty Little Secrets

Preacher Episode 2.10 Annotations: Everyone's Got Dirty Little Secrets

Preacher episode 2.10 annotations: Everyone’s got dirty little secrets

Welcome back brothers and sisters to our weekly feature, the Preacher Book Club, where we talk about the latest episode of AMC‘s Preacher, dissecting the episode at hand, annotating the changes made from the Garth Ennis/Steve Dillon comic book series and attempting to predict about what will be coming next. So let’s dive right into our thoughts and annotations on Preacher Episode 2.09!

Yep, that’s Jesus

As previously mentioned, in the context of Preacher, Jesus fathered a child before he died (or rather, after in the comics) and the opening sex scene does a great job of hiding the fact that it’s the man himself until the end of the scene. This exact sequence was never shown in the source but it’s a good way to expand on the material for the series and offers a great opportunity for later… read more

Xena: Warrior Princess Reboot Is No Longer Happening at NBC

The Xena: Warrior Princess reboot is off the table at NBC

The Xena: Warrior Princess reboot is off the table at NBC

NBC is no longer going forward its planned Xena: Warrior Princess reboot, according to THR. The show was originally to have been written by Javier Grillo-Marxuach (Lost). Today NBC Entertainment president Jennifer Salke told the site that the reboot in its current form is no longer happening. “Nothing is happening on that right now. We looked at some material; we decided at that point that it didn’t warrant the reboot. I’d never say never on that one because it’s such a beloved title, but the current incarnation of it is dead.” Xena: Warrior Princess starred Lucy Lawless and aired in syndication from September 4, 1995, until June 18, 2001. read more

Short of the Day: ‘Time & Again’ Invokes an Amblin-like Air of Childhood

By H. Perry Horton

Go back in time with this marvelous film.

ummers when you’re a kid are full of boundless possibilities. I remember one summer when I was six or so, me and some friends dug up the front yard of my parents’ house looking for Leprechauns. Another summer, we tried to build the world’s coolest BMX dirt track. Another summer it was a village of treehouses a la Endor. None of these things, of course, ever came to full fruition, but that wasn’t necessarily the point. Summers when you’re a kid are for a different kind of education than you get the rest of the year, they’re a time for the imagination to learn itself, its limits and reaches. read more

Food, Glorious Food: The Movies’ Best-Looking Meals

By H. Perry Horton

A supercut guaranteed to make you salivate.

When I was a little kid, I was convinced that carrots were delicious before I ever even had one. Thus, I was disappointed, because carrots are not delicious, at least not in the way my little-kid mind was expecting. I was expecting something sweet, something chewy, like a bubble-gum candy bar or some other such silly and sugary concoction. The reason I thought this? Looney Tunes, Bugs Bunny specifically, who always had a cartoon carrot in hand and always seemed to be blown away by every bite. My mind created a flavor profile based on the smooth, soft, bright vegetable I saw on TV, and that was kind of the point. It’s the same way Popeye hoodwinked kids into thinking canned spinach was awesome, which, again, it is not. read more

Downton Abbey Season 6 to Lead Into Movie

Downton Abbey Season 6 to Lead Into Movie

Downton Abbey Season 6 to lead into movie

It’s been over a year since Downton Abbey‘s last season came to its conclusion. All of the show’s story lines came to a tidy end and it reached what the Dowager Countess called a “happy enough” conclusion. But, what happened to the residents of Downton Abbey after the final episode? We’ll soon find out. Downton Abbey Season 6 will lead into a movie, planned to start filming soon.

WHERE WE LEFT OFF IN DOWNTON ABBEY SEASON 6

Downton Abbey’s last season saw a lot of changes, with fresh beginnings for several of the characters. Lady Mary found a second great love in Henry Talbot and has a new baby on the way. Henry and Tom opened up a car shop. Carson and Mrs. Hughes got married. Anna and Mr. Bates welcomed a baby boy. read more

Where is the Seinfeld Cast Now?

Where is the Seinfeld Cast Now?

Where is the Seinfeld cast now?

Since the show ended in May of 1998 on NBC, the Seinfeld cast has all gone on to extended, separate careers, mostly with great success. Some Seinfeld cast members have gone on to movies, while others have had new series of their own. Some have even had multiple shows, each with varying levels of popularity. However, each of them has remained in the public eye, even if in a not-so-great light.

Jerry Seinfeld was part of the Seinfeld cast

JERRY SEINFELD

The lead, Jerry Seinfeld, has focused primarily on reviving his stand-up career, though only part-time. He has also created a web show, Comedians in Cars Getting Coffee, where he interviews his many comedian friends while they go out for coffee in one of Seinfeld’s many classic vehicles. It has met with tremendous success, and some of the biggest names in comedy, business, and politics have ridden with him on the show, including former president Barack Obama. With the addition of residuals from Seinfeld on Hulu, his income seems to be doing fine. read more

Game of Thrones: Who Died ‘Beyond the Wall’ and What It Means

By Neil Miller

In ‘Beyond The Wall,’ Game of Thrones dispatched with at least two characters that will have massive consequences.

Warning: This article contains spoilers for everything through Game of Thrones season 7, episode 6, “Beyond The Wall” and a little bit of speculation.

We love the spectacle of it. How can you not, right? “Beyond The Wall,” as directed by Alan Taylor, was one of Game of Thrones‘ most massive battle episodes. It was the first time we’ve seen Daenerys and her dragons take on The Night King and the army of the dead. That’s a huge moment in the context of the show and the meta context of what fans have been waiting to see for years. And even though it took a horrifying turn, it was well worth the wait. Plus, it sets up some very large stakes to come. Now we know that Daenerys’ dragons aren’t completely invincible against The Night King. Cersei doesn’t stand a chance, but he’s got a few magical spear-chucking tricks up his sleeve. read more

Game of Thrones: Daenerys Just Learned A Powerful Lesson About Her Dragons

By Neil Miller

Today’s tragedy may be the key to tomorrow’s strategy for Daenerys Targaryen.

Warning: This article contains spoilers for everything through Game of Thrones season 7, episode 6, “Beyond The Wall” and a little bit of speculation.

With the penultimate episode of Game of Thrones season 7 in the books, it’s okay to take a moment and allow yourself to be traumatized. That was, to say that least, a lot.

But once you’ve reckoned with the fact that we just watched everyone’s favorite dragon queen lose one of her “children” in the most horrific way possible (seriously, his neck exploded), we should dig into why this happened and what Daenerys Targaryen may ultimately learn from this tragedy.

First, let’s talk about the dragon who didn’t die. The one Daenerys and her crew rode to safety, narrowly evading the Night King’s second ice javelin throw. Dragon narrowly misses being impaled because he’s got Daenerys keeping an eye on his back. He has a rider. read more

Game of Thrones Season 7 Finale Preview and a Look Inside Episode 6

Game of Thrones Season 7 Finale Preview and a Look Inside Episode 6

Game of Thrones Season 7 finale preview and a look inside Episode 6

Following the sixth episode of Game of Thrones Season 7, HBO has revealed a preview for the final episode of the season. You can watch the Game of Thrones Season 7 finale preview using the player below! Underneath, you’ll find an inside look at the sixth episode.

At the end of last season, Daenerys’ (Emilia Clarke) dragons and her immense army were finally on the way to Westeros, where Cersei (Lena Headey) has now become Queen after the death of her children. The Night King’s (Vladimir Furdik in season 6) army is heading south, and a battle appears to be imminent. read more

Xbox One X Project Scorpio Edition Pre-Orders and the gamescom Trailers!

Xbox One X Project Scorpio Edition Pre-Orders and the gamescom Trailers!

Xbox One X Project Scorpio Edition pre-orders and the gamescom Trailers!

Today, Xbox unveiled the Xbox One X Project Scorpio Edition designed for fans who want to be the first to experience the console – and it’s available for pre-order now for $499 USD until supplies run out! There will only be a limited number of Xbox One X Project Scorpio Edition consoles, and they will only be available as part of this pre-order.

The Xbox One X Project Scorpio Edition features a custom design with the words “Project Scorpio” printed on the console and the controller and they’ve incorporated a sophisticated and dynamic graphic pattern across the exterior. The Project Scorpio Edition also comes with an exclusive vertical stand so you can choose how to display it in your home. read more

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