New ‘Justice League’ Image Totally Fails to Impress

justiceleague-ughWarner Brother released this image to USA Today for its promotional package on “must-see” movies in 2017, and I must say, the gambit totally backfired: This doesn’t make me want to see Justice League. It makes me want to laugh and then feel sorry for DC Comics.

The photo depicts most of the Justice League, DC’s team of superheroes meant to compete on the silver screen with Marvel’s Avengers. Included here are Batman (Ben Affleck), Wonder Woman (Gal Gadot), Cyborg (Ray Fisher), the Flash (Ezra Miller) and Aquaman (Jason Momoa) — but the team’s final member, Superman (Henry Cavill), is nowhere to be seen.

That could be because Supes was killed in the abominable Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice and producers are trying to keep his resurrection a scret. But I think he’s just hiding because he doesn’t want to be associated with another bloated, self-important turkey that collapses under its own weight.

“[Filming Justice League] was all about the filling-out of this massive comic-book pantheon with the biggest and coolest heroes we could,” director Zack Snyder told the newspaper.
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Look! A ‘Thor: Ragnarok’ Synopsis at Last!

Disney has finally released a synopsis for Thor: Ragnarok that at least hints at how the movie will tie together the dangling plot threads from Thor: The Dark World, the “Planet Hulk” comic book story and the “Twilight of the Gods” tale from Norse mythology not to mention a guest appearance by Doctor Strange, the villainous plotting of Hela, queen of the underworld, and, of course, Loki.

Fans have known for some time that these story elements would be involved on the third Thor solo (or “solo”) movie, but not how. Check this out to see if it helps:

In Marvel Studios’ Thor: Ragnarok, Thor is imprisoned on the other side of the universe without his mighty hammer and finds himself in a race against time to get back to Asgard to stop Ragnarok — the destruction of his homeworld and the end of Asgardian civilization — at the hands of an all-powerful new threat, the ruthless Hela. But first he must survive a deadly gladiatorial contest that pits him against his former ally and fellow Avenger — the Incredible Hulk!
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Doug Jones Reveals Secret of Guillermo del Toro’s Next Movie

doug-jonesDoug Jones is one of those actors everyone have seen in big-budget hit movies, but no one has any idea what he looks like. That’s because Jones specializes in full-body creature costumes and motion-capture work. If anyone can be said to rival the great Andy Serkis at portraying animated characters, it’s Jones.

Jones has played everything from the Silver Surfer in Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer to Abe Sapien in the Hellboy movies to the horned faun in Pan’s Labyrinth. He often features in movies for director Guillermo del Toro, and that is once again the case with The Shape of Water.

Since it’s a del Toro-Jones collaboration, you don’t even need to be told the flick will be weird; but Jones told Collider what it’s about:

It’s not a sci-fi [film], it’s not a genre film, but I am a creature in it. I’m a fish man that’s kind of a one-off. I’m an enigma, nobody knows where I came from; I’m the last of my species so I’m like a natural anomaly. And I’m being studied and tested in a U.S. government facility in 1963, so the Russian Cold War is on, the race for space is on, so there’s all that backdrop and that undercurrent. I’m being tested for how can they use me for advantages in military or space travel, or my technology—can we make this usable for humans? So they’re trying to keep me a secret from the Russians.
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This Live Giant Squid in Japan is Not a Kaiju!

Ladies and gentlemen in the Land of the Rising Sun, there is no reason to activate the Kaiju Emergency Alert System!

Sure, this monstrous squid was spotted swimming just offshore last week, but it is a perfectly normal animal. Yet appearances are extremely rare because it lives so deep in the ocean, making the creature practically mythical! And this one’s appearance would be rare if it happened anywhere except Toyama Bay, because giant squids have been confirmed to have visited those waters no less than 16 times! However, this latest sighting and recording is by far the clearest footage on record!

Get this: Scientists who have examined this footage have declared this specimen of the genus Architeuthis to be just a juvenile!

Seeing the beastie live and up close, it’s not hard to sympathize with the sailors of old who were inspired by this terrifying creature to trade stories of the legendary kraken!

Speaking of which, has anyone read the 2010 novel Kraken by the brilliant China Miéville? It prominently features an Architeuthis. It’s a wonderfully layed fantasy mystery that is equal parts a study of gods and human(?) monsters and also questions which particular religion’s apocalypse will end the world.

Read it! Architeuthis would be proud of you.

What If WESTWORLD Had Been Made in the 1980s?

HBO’s WESTWORLD has one of my favorite opening credits of any show out there (which is not unusual for the cabler), and while the series sadly will not return until 2018, a creator on YouTube mocked up an opening credits sequence for the science-fiction show as it might have looked if the original 1973 movie had become a broadcast TV series in the early 1980s.

From the electronic score to the wireframe animation, this fan video is right on target!

Watch the R-rated Trailer for ‘Alien: Covenant’

I thought I would start 2017 with this terrific trailer for one of the movies I am most looking forward to seeing this year: Alien: Covenant, directed by Ridley Scott, who helmed the original Alien.

This is a red-band trailer, meaning it features grown-up language and some blood and body horror.

This is how the studio describes the story: The crew of the colony ship Covenant, bound for a remote planet on the far side of the galaxy, discovers what they think is an uncharted paradise, but is actually a dark, dangerous world. When they uncover a threat beyond their imagination, they must attempt a harrowing escape.

The movie stars: Michael Fassbender, Katherine Waterston, Billy Crudup, Danny McBride, Demián Bichir, Carmen Ejogo, Amy Seimetz, Jussie Smollett, Callie Hernandez, Nathaniel Dean, Alexander England, Benjamin Rigby.

Alien: Covenant opens on May 19.

Wonder Woman Draws (Steals) a Special Sword

WONDER WOMAN (2017) Gal Gadot as Wonder Woman

Director Patty JenkinsWonder Woman is one of the most anticipated movies of the upcoming summer season, so every sliver of information about it is worth examining.

In this photo, courtesy of Entertainment Weekly, the future Wonder Woman, Diana of Themyscira (Gal Gadot), is stealing a magical Amazonian sword known as the “god killer,” which she intends to take to Man’s World. The theft angers her mother, Queen Hippolyta (Connie Nielsen).

Jenkins described the import of the scene to the magazine: “This is her moment. She’s heard all the terrible things about man’s land. But she’s also heard that mankind is in need and under duress. This is her great moment to make the decision to be the one to try and save them.”

Let’s look at the pulse-pounding trailers for the action flick (both spliced together):

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