May 15, 2013 | 7:35 p.m.
The highly anticipated sequel to J.J. Abrams’ 2009 reboot “Star Trek” opens in theaters tonight, but Chris Pine, Zoe Saldana, Leonard Nimoy and more “Star Trek Into Darkness” stars walked the silver carpet Tuesday evening for the film’s Hollywood premiere. The film follows Capt. James T. Kirk (Pine) and his Enterprise crew as they embark on a revenge-fueled manhunt to capture the man behind a terrorist attack on Starfleet. The search takes them to a war-zone world, putting the ship and the lives within it in danger and causing Kirk to question his abilities as captain. “I think a lot of maturing happens in this film for Kirk, for a man who thinks he knows everything and leads with his gut and leads with his heart, and is all kind of passion and heart,” Pine said during the film’s presentation […]
May 13, 2013 | 12:38 p.m.
It’s been 20 years since “The X-Files” opened to viewers’ wanting-to-believe eyes, and the hit paranormal investigation drama’s creator, Chris Carter, doesn’t quite know what to make of that phenomenon. “It’s surreal,” he told a sold-out crowd Sunday at the Hero Complex Film Festival shortly after entering to a standing ovation. “It’s like an X-File…. Twenty years’ missing time.” Asked what he might do differently if he made the show now, he said, “It was of its time…. You probably could make the show today, but, I don’t know why, it just feels like it was made exactly when it should have been made.” The festival’s closing night was devoted to the acclaimed Fox series, and included screenings of three fan-picked episodes – the pilot, which he wrote, “Jose Chung’s From Outer Space” and “Clyde Bruckman’s Final Repose.” Carter said […]
May 12, 2013 | 8:35 p.m.
Earth’s victory over alien invaders in “Independence Day” may have been but the first battle in a war. The film’s co-writers — director Roland Emmerich and producer Dean Devlin – told the Hero Complex Film Festival audience at a matinee screening of the 1996 blockbuster Sunday that they have ideas for a sequel (and maybe more) but, as Devlin put it, “things have to align … the planets have to get together.” And planets getting together is a thrilling prospect for fans of these spectacle specialists. Emmerich said he and Devlin have discussed why the aliens came in the first place, what the bigger story is. The director called the aliens a “swarm intelligence, and we are individual intelligence – and even if we kill each other … we have something very special, we have this indomitable human spirit.” So, […]
May 12, 2013 | 12:13 p.m.
Any public appearance by Guillermo del Toro is a buffet of goodies for fans of monsters, robots and things that go bump in the night. The director’s visit Saturday night to the Hero Complex Film Festival was no exception, with Del Toro sharing a new trailer for his upcoming sci-fi monster movie “Pacific Rim” and dropping details on future projects “Justice League Dark” and “Monster” in between screenings of two of his most personal films, “The Devil’s Backbone” and “Pan’s Labyrinth.” Del Toro said “Pacific Rim,” which opens July 12 and pits massive robots against invading monsters in a near-future world, was inspired by his childhood love of Japanese pop culture. He talked about reading manga series like “Astro Boy,” watching films by Toho, the Japanese production company behind Godzilla, and fancifully sketching giant robots — an obsession he has […]
May 12, 2013 | 7:53 a.m.
Taking his chair after the intense, haunting ending and solemn credits of “The Mist,” its star, Thomas Jane, seemed newly rattled by it. “I just slipped in and caught the last 10 minutes or so because I got here a little early,” the actor, a surprise guest at the Hero Complex Film Festival, told the crowd Saturday afternoon. “I kind of wish that I hadn’t. … That was really hard. That’s powerful, man.” “You know this movie came out on Thanksgiving weekend?” he asked, to audience laughter. “Nothing says the holidays like flesh-eating tentacles,” added the film’s writer-director, Frank Darabont. The 2007 horror film follows a group of people trapped in a shopping market after a mist envelopes their town. As they learn of the presence of deadly, unearthly creatures outside, debate over what to do splinters the survivors, with […]
May 11, 2013 | 1:14 p.m.
The Hero Complex Film Festival kicked off Friday evening with a 25th anniversary screening of “They Live,” a 35th anniversary screening of “Halloween” and an onstage conversation with the filmmaker behind both movies, John Carpenter. Carpenter discussed his motivation in making “They Live,” a campy but subversive sci-fi flick that starred professional wrestler “Rowdy” Roddy Piper as the film’s blue-collar hero Nada, who discovers an alien conspiracy to mind-control the people of Earth using invisible messages. Carpenter called “They Live” his most political film and said it was his response to consumerism and class disparity in the 1980s. “By the end of the ’70s there was a backlash against everything in the ’60s, and that’s what the ’80s were, and Ronald Reagan became president, and Reagonomics came in,” Carpenter told the sold-out theater at the Chinese 6 Theatres in Hollywood. […]
March 28, 2013 | 8:17 a.m.
There may be more costumed characters across the street from the Happiest Place on Earth than in it this weekend as thousands of sci-fi, fantasy and comics enthusiasts arrive for WonderCon 2013, which kicks off Friday at the Anaheim Convention Center. Run by the organizers of Comic-Con International, WonderCon is in many ways a junior sibling to that massive pop-culture expo in San Diego, featuring panel discussions for blockbuster films, popular television shows and comics creators, not to mention portfolio review for aspiring professionals, book signings, a cosplay masquerade and plenty of geek-friendly shopping on the convention floor. This year’s WonderCon programming lineup includes panels for Guillermo del Toro’s robots vs. kaiju film “Pacific Rim,” the Sam Raimi- and Bruce Campbell-produced “Evil Dead” remake and Joss Whedon’s ”Much Ado About Nothing,” among others. Click through the gallery above for Hero Complex’s top picks for WonderCon this year. It’s […]
March 27, 2013 | 2:00 p.m.
With “The Dark Knight Rises,” “The Avengers” and this summer’s “Man of Steel” dominating the big screen, isn’t it time Wonder Woman got her own feature film? That’s one of many questions asked by “Wonder Women! The Untold Story of American Superheroines,” a documentary exploring the Amazon goddess’ history in comics and status as an empowering symbol for girls and women. The documentary, which premieres April 15 on the PBS “Independent Lens” series, will be screened Thursday evening at KPCC’s Crawford Family Forum in Pasadena, followed by a panel discussion co-hosted by Community Cinema. Panelists at the event include Madeline Di Nonno, executive director at the Geena Davis Institute on Gender in Media; Mike Madrid, author of “The Supergirls: Fashion, Feminism, Fantasy, and the History of Comic Book Heroines“; Zoe Chevat, comic artist and contributing writer to the Mary Sue; and […]
March 18, 2013 | 6:00 a.m.
“Trance,” the latest film from Oscar-winning director Danny Boyle (“Slumdog Millionaire”), doesn’t open in theaters until April 5, but Hero Complex readers will be able to see the art world-set thriller early — and free — at a special screening March 30. Boyle will be on hand for a Q&A moderated by Hero Complex contributor John Horn following the film. The first feature from Boyle since the 2010 drama “127 Hours,” “Trance” stars James McAvoy as Simon, a fine art auctioneer who becomes mixed up with a criminal (Vincent Cassel) and seeks the help of a hypnotist (Rosario Dawson). There was a sneak preview of the film earlier this month at Austin, Texas’ South by Southwest Film Festival, where Boyle and his longtime musical collaborator Rick Smith from the English techno duo Underworld partnered on a DJ set at a […]
Feb. 03, 2013 | 10:55 a.m.
Is Super Bowl Sunday the least busy day to visit the Happiest Place on Earth? According to persistent online chatter and practically anyone with a Disney annual pass that doesn’t black out on weekends (sorry Southern California passholders, this doesn’t include you), the day of the Big Game is regarded by many Mickey-ophiles as an all-day extension of magic morning hours — shorter lines for marquee rides. (Magic morning hours are a perk for Disney hotel guests who on certain days are permitted into the parks early, usually an hour before the public.) Of course, as anyone who has ever covered Disney can tell you, the gatekeepers of information at the Magic Kingdom are about as likely to disclose daily attendance figures as they are to sponsor a mixed-martial arts fight between Cinderella and Goofy. (Actually, that sounds more entertaining than […]