March 08, 2013 | 8:16 a.m.
“Oz the Great and Powerful” is neither great nor powerful, if you believe the criticism being heaped upon it in the mainstream media. Nearly all of the critics agree that the film is visually stunning. But several of the nation’s top critics described “Oz the Great and Powerful” as a runaway train, with so much money poured into the special effects and pageantry of it all that the production had nothing left to spend on a compelling story. “An oppressive, bloated bore, the latest argument that CGI kills the imaginations of talented filmmakers,” said the Miami Herald. “If it only had a brain. Or a heart. Or nerve,” the New York Daily News said of “Oz the Great and Powerful.” The New York Times described the film as “a dispiriting, infuriating jumble of big money, small ideas and ugly visuals.” There […]
March 07, 2013 | 12:37 p.m.
“World War Z,” author Max Brooks’ best-selling novel about the aftermath of a worldwide zombie epidemic, has an almost supernatural ability to attract performers you wouldn’t normally associate with zombies. Brad Pitt is starring in the big-screen version, directed by Oscar nominee Marc Forster. And now an expanded version of the book on audio has added another high-brow performer: Oscar-winner Martin Scorsese. Scorsese will perform the role of Breck Scott, a corrupt pharmaceutical developer who sells the American public on a placebo he claims will cure the zombie disease. It’s a slickster role the fast-talking Scorsese surely knocks out of the park. He appears on the upcoming “World War Z: The Complete Edition” audiobook, which features five more hours of stories from the book that were previously unavailable in audiobook form. Other performers appearing in the newly recorded segments include […]
March 06, 2013 | 2:31 p.m.
Young artists looking to break into comics might want to take a page from David Marquez. Based in Austin, Texas, the illustrator is one of the industry’s fastest-rising stars, working alongside veteran writer Brian Michael Bendis on such titles as “Ultimate Spider-Man” and “All-New X-Men” and working in his second graphic novel, “The Joyners in 3D,” after arriving on the comics scene only three years ago. Soon after college, Marquez got his start as an animator for Richard Linklater’s 2006 rotoscoped film “A Scanner Darkly.” His first graphic novel “Syndrome,” co-written by Daniel Quantz and R.J. Ryan, was released by indie publisher Archaia Entertainment in 2010, soon followed by “Days Missing Vol. 2: Kestus” in 2011. His work earned him a nomination for the Russ Manning Most Promising Newcomer award, given out each year at the prestigious Eisner Awards, and […]
March 06, 2013 | 10:45 a.m.
This post has been corrected. See the note below for details. “The Avengers,” “Dark Knight Rises” and Martin Freeman are among the films and performers nominated for the MTV Movie Awards. What’s that? You thought Hollywood’s awards season was over? Well, it’s just getting started for fan-favorite movies that rarely have a shot at the shiny hardware for best-movie Oscars and Golden Globes. The MTV Movie Awards will be announced April 14 after you — yes, you! — get to vote in the online popularity contest. The coveted Golden Popcorn statuette will be handed out in such offbeat categories as best kiss, best shirtless moment and best fight, in addition to more traditional categories such as breakthrough performance and movie of the year. James Bond jilted: Mendes rejects “Skyfall” follow-up Freeman is nominated for “The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey,” in a […]
March 06, 2013 | 9:41 a.m.
Who can resist James Bond? Sam Mendes, that’s who. Mendes directed “Skyfall” — the latest in the lucrative James Bond series, and one of the most financially successful movies of all time — but he’s said no to directing the next installment in the long-running franchise. Empire scored the exclusive interview in which Mendes explained why he declined the offer by producers Barbara Broccoli and Michael Wilson to direct the next film. Iron Man 3: New trailer released “It has been a very difficult decision not to accept Michael and Barbara’s very generous offer to direct the next Bond movie,” Mendes told the British film magazine. He said directing “Skyfall” was one of the best experiences of his career, but added: “I have theater and other commitments, including productions of ‘Charlie and the Chocolate Factory’ and ‘King Lear’, that need my complete focus […]
Feb. 24, 2013 | 6:51 a.m.
Robert Pattinson and Kristen Stewart were the big “winners” — and the big losers — at the 33rd Razzie Awards as the final installment of the “Twilight” saga was deemed the worst movie of the year. “The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn — Part 2″ won seven awards in all at the Razzies, which mock Hollywood’s self-important awards season by recognizing what it deems as the worst movies and performances of the year. The “Twilight” film won the dis-”honors” for worst picture of the year, worst actress for Stewart, worst supporting actor for Taylor Lautner, worst screen couple for Lautner and 12 year-old Mackenzie Foy, worst screen ensemble, worst remake/rip-off or sequel, and worst director for Bill Condon. Oscars 2013: Complete coverage The honors make the “Twilight” film “2012′s most-RAZZed movie.” But it could have been worse. Last year, Adam Sandler’s “Jack & Jill” had […]
Feb. 22, 2013 | 1:12 p.m.
Edward Gorey, an artist who injected glee into gruesome and mirth into the macabre, is the recipient of a Google Doodle. Gorey, who would have been 88, was known for his offbeat artistry — he won a cult following with his eerie, yet droll pen-and-ink drawings, writing and illustrating dozens of his own books. Animation of his work introduced the PBS show “Mystery!” for decades, and he won a Tony for costume design in 1977 for a Broadway production of “Dracula.” Gorey was also known for his eccentricities — which began at an early age. As a 5-year-old, he read Bram Stoker’s “Dracula,” he told author Ron Miller in 1996. As a youngster, he also taught himself how to draw. From a young age, “his passion was creating his own bizarre stories and illustrating them.” Gorey was an admitted fan […]
Feb. 22, 2013 | 8:38 a.m.
Cowabunga! A ‘Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles” remake is on the way. But perhaps the bigger news is this: Actress Megan Fox and director Michael Bay are reuniting for the “TMNT” redo. The director took to his website Thursday night to announce the news: “TMNT: We Are Bringing Megan Fox Back Into the Family” Bay and Fox famously clashed while working on the first two “Transformers” movies. At one point during an interview with a British magazine, Fox compared her director to Hitler. Bay lashed back with some tart words of his own, questioning Fox’s work ethic: “I’m sorry, Megan. … I’m sorry that I’m making you show up on time.” Shia LaBeouf wages Twitter war They parted ways for the third installment in the series, “Transformers: Dark of the Moon,” with Rosie Huntington-Whiteley stepping in to play the part of […]
Feb. 20, 2013 | 2:58 p.m.
“The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey” topped the Saturn Award nominations Wednesday, with nine nods including best fantasy film, best director for Peter Jackson, best actor for Martin Freeman and best supporting actor for Ian McKellen. Other films being honored with nominations for the 39th annual Saturn Awards include “Life of Pi,” “Skyfall,” “The Avengers,” “The Dark Knight Rises,” “Looper,” “Cloud Atlas,” “Argo” and “Les Miserables.” The diversity of films underscores “the ways in which genre filmmaking has expanded beyond its roots as niche entertainment,” the Academy of Science Fiction, Fantasy & Horror Films said in its announcement. ‘Hobbit’ Blu-ray release March 19 won’t have extended edition Although much of Hollywood is focused this week on Sunday’s Oscar ceremony — considered by many to be the highlight of the awards season — the Academy of Science Fiction, Fantasy & Horror Films is just […]
Feb. 18, 2013 | 10:44 a.m.
With his latest literary endeavor, “Seduction of the Innocent,” Max Allan Collins writes a hard-boiled detective novel inspired by the 1950s witch hunt against crime and horror comic books. He took inspiration for the story from the real-life crusade of Dr. Fredric Wertham, who in 1954 published a nonfiction book also titled “Seduction of the Innocent” in which he accused comic books – especially violent ones such as those distributed by “Tales From the Crypt” publisher EC Comics – of corrupting America’s youth. Collins sets his book in 1954, though it’s fictional EF Comics that is the target of concern. Would-be censor Dr. Werner Frederick meets a gruesome demise on the way to a Senate hearing, and it’s up to private eye Jack Starr and his beautiful boss Maggie to solve the case before the crackdown comes. Collins, of course, […]