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Michael Clarke Duncan dead at age 54

Actor Michael Clarke Duncan has passed away at the age of 54, from complications suffered from a heart attack he had in July.

Known for his big build and deep voice, Duncan was in the prime of his life. His first movie role was in 1995's Friday, and he had several small parts playing bouncers and muscle men. It wasn't until 1997's Armageddon that he had a meatier role with more lines, playing one of the rough-and-tumble drilling crew drafted into blowing up an approaching asteroid.

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Thursday, November 7, 2013

4 Marvel TV shows coming to Netflix

We knew that Marvel had been shopping around a mega-sized TV package to prospective networks but until today the details weren't known. Well, the deal has been struck and it'll be on Netflix where we'll see the next wave of Marvel TV shows. And based on the news that the House of Ideas issued today about their deal, the plan is to build a Television Marvel Universe to serve as a companion to the Cinematic Marvel Universe we've already got.

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Sunday, November 3, 2013

DVD Review: Monsters University

One of my absolute favorite Pixar films is Monsters Inc. When I first watched it back in 2001, the movie's charm and charisma swept me away. I loved how Team Pixar was able to assemble a story that explained (in a childlike fantasy way) how the world of monsters intersected with the world of human children and also include a strong emotional connection between the film's two main characters, Mike and Sully, and their little ward Boo. After Finding Nemo it's my favorite Pixar movie of all-time.

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Sunday, October 27, 2013

Star Wars Episode VII changes writers

Lucasfilm has made its official announcement and issued a statement addressing that writer Michael Arndt is no longer working on the Episode VII screenplay. That word processing task is now on the desktops of director J.J. Abrams (who's original 9-to-5 job was as a screenwriter) and grizzled veteran writer/director Lawrence Kasdan.

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Sunday, October 6, 2013

Why did Gravity earn $55 million in its opening weekend?

Gravity opened in theaters this weekend, and the box office ticket sales for the movie are estimated to come in somewhere around $55-and-a-half million dollars. Alfonso Cuarón's latest work now has the distinction of being the highest-ever movie to open in the month of October. As well, at least 20% of the ticket sales for Gravity came from IMAX screenings, and 50% from 3D showings. In the year 2013, when box office returns for 3D films have lost much of their luster from the age of 2007's Avatar, Gravity is evidence that cinema-goers made the distinct choice to see the film in an enhanced screen format.

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Sunday, August 18, 2013

Book Review: Elysium: The Art of the Film

Books about the art design of mainstream movies can be lavish tomes filled with conceptual drawings and paintings, but the better ones devote a decent amount of space on their pages to the artists that thought up these fantastic worlds. This approach was done for Titan Books most recent coffee table release, Elysium: The Art of the Film, which details the creation of director Neill Blomkamp's dystopic world of 2154. At 176 pages, Titan's Elysium tome covers the art design from the film in a good way that won't leave you regretting your purchasing decision, if you crave to know more about the influences and reasoning that went into the Elysium universe.

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Sunday, August 4, 2013

Peter Capaldi is the Twelfth Doctor Who

Moments ago the BBC revealed the identity of the twelfth incarnation of Doctor Who: 55-year-old Peter Capaldi, a man who's had a solid run of supporting and guest roles on many British shows. The hiring of Capaldi is a bit of a shocker to the new Who series, as it breaks away from the trend of casting younger actors as The Doctor.

For example, outgoing Eleventh Doctor Matt Smith was cast as the character when he was then 26 years of age. Before Smith, David Tennant got the role at the age of 34.

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Monday, July 1, 2013

Star Trek Continues is worth watching

In the same summer that we got a new big-budget Star Trek feature film, it strikes me as ironic that the more enjoyable new story featuring Capt. Kirk and his Enterprise shipmates came from the internet. If you've found yourself agreeing with the criticism about Star Trek Into Darkness and its story faults, silly plot logistics and its nearly line-by-line remake of Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan, then let me direct your attention to a new Star Trek story that may satisfy your craving for good 23rd century adventure. It's called Star Trek Continues, and you can watch it right on YouTube.

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Game of Thrones review: Season 3, Episode 10

Based largely off of the first half of George R.R. Martin’s behemoth of a book, A Storm of Swords (which is longer than the entirety of J.R.R. Tolkien’s Lord of the Rings trilogy!), the third season of HBO’s Game of Thrones brings all of the plot lines, character beats, and thematic developments from the first two years to a climatic head.

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Monday, June 24, 2013

Man of Steel Facebook roundtable

I see movies.  I’m also on Facebook.  Sometimes, the two worlds collide, and I end up shooting the shit about movies with others on Facebook.

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Thursday, June 20, 2013

Review: World War Z

I didn’t think that World War Z would turn out to be an enjoyable movie. The signs of a troubled film production were there: substantial changes in the screen story from the source material; extensive reshoots of the movie’s ending; big budgetary overruns; and rumors of the director and the star clashing to the point that they had stopped speaking to each other.

But the final product works. World War Z is a decent movie.

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Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Game of Thrones review: Season 3 Episode 9

Based largely off of the first half of George R.R. Martin’s behemoth of a book, A Storm of Swords (which is longer than the entirety of J.R.R. Tolkien’s Lord of the Rings trilogy!), the third season of HBO’s Game of Thrones brings all of the plot lines, character beats, and thematic developments from the first two years to a climatic head.

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Game of Thrones: Season 3, Episode 10 Deconstructed

Welcome to “It Is Known – Season 3 Deconstructed”! Every week, you will find my extensive review of the week’s episode of Game of Thrones

I will explore the narrative that the show weaves. And what a narrative indeed! The story is complex, the characters are manifold, the twists and turns unexpected. I will deconstruct the episodes piece by piece, moving from character to character. This is an unusual approach, I admit, and a bit cumbersome at times, but the show basically does the same. The episodes are just parts of one, epic story, and as parts we have to examine them if we hope to get everything that happens.

 

This Week's Episode: "Mhysa"

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Sunday, June 9, 2013

Game of Thrones: Season 3, Episode 9 Deconstructed

Welcome to “It Is Known – Season 3 Deconstructed”! Every week, you will find my extensive review of the week’s episode of Game of Thrones

I will explore the narrative that the show weaves. And what a narrative indeed! The story is complex, the characters are manifold, the twists and turns unexpected. I will deconstruct the episodes piece by piece, moving from character to character. This is an unusual approach, I admit, and a bit cumbersome at times, but the show basically does the same. The episodes are just parts of one, epic story, and as parts we have to examine them if we hope to get everything that happens. 

 

This Week's Episode: "The Rains of Castamere"

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Game of Thrones review: Season 3, Episode 8

Based largely off of the first half of George R.R. Martin’s behemoth of a book, A Storm of Swords (which is longer than the entirety of J.R.R. Tolkien’s Lord of the Rings trilogy!), the third season of HBO’s Game of Thrones brings all of the plot lines, character beats, and thematic developments from the first two years to a climatic head.

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Saturday, June 1, 2013

Matt Smith departing Doctor Who

The Eleventh Doctor will bring his run as Doctor Who to a finale this December. Today the BBC announced that Matt Smith, the actor presently playing the near-immortal Time Lord in the show, will be departing the series after the airing of the 2013 Christmas Special.

"Doctor Who has been the most brilliant experience for me as an actor and a bloke, and that largely is down to the cast, crew and fans of the show," said Smith in an official release originating from the BBC. "I'm incredibly grateful to all the cast and crew who work tirelessly every day, to realise all the elements of the show and deliver Doctor Who to the audience."

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