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In The Fellowship of the Ring, there is a moment prior to Bilbo’s birthday party and disappearance when he tries to justify his imminent departure to Gandalf. “I feel thin, sort of stretched, like butter scraped over too much bread,” he muses. Naturally, when Peter Jackson turned his attentions to adapting J.R.R. Tolkien's other masterwork, The Hobbit, and announced that one novel would be fleshed out further and turned into an entire trilogy of movies, people turned around and thrust Bilbo’s words back at the filmmaker. “I feel thin, sort of stretched, like one novel adapted into three movies,” they joked. Well, the third movie is finally here, and while as entertaining and aesthetically pleasing as one might expect from Jackson and his talented team (including recently deceased cinematographer Andrew Lesnie), it does indeed suffer from that long-predicted flaw: it feels very stretched.
- Lee Jutton
The making of threequels can be a thorny business, especially when it comes to the most beloved of franchises, but that hasn't held back the creation of some truly phenomenal third films.
With the recent arrival of the The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies in Sky Store, we're celebrating some of the best threequels out there:
The Harry Potter series gave us a unique chance to watch a group of young actors growing up over more than a decade from cute little kids to major stars with some serious blockbusters under their belts.
As with Jk Rowling's original novels, The Prisoner of Azkaban revealed the full potential of the series. It is darker and scarier, sure, but also richer and more complex with some great character moments from its young cast.
Director Alfonso Cuarón brings a touch of magic to »
Peter Jackson's "The Lord of the Rings: Return of the King" was beloved by fans, critically praised, won 11 Oscars and featured some truly stunning battlefield sequences, but I'll always remember it for being a butt-numbing 3 hours and 21 minutes long. There's no excuse for that! I was crying by the end of that movie. Crying because I never thought it would end. Let's face it: blockbuster movies are getting too long, and the worst offenders in this regard include such A-list directors as Christopher Nolan ("The Dark Knight Rises" at 165 minutes), Michael Bay ("Transformers: Age of Extinction" at 165 minutes) and James Cameron ("Avatar" at 161 minutes and can you imagine how long those sequels are going to be?). Thankfully, we have a high-profile savior in "Star Wars: The Force Awakens" screenwriter Lawrence Kasdan, who promises that the J.J. Abrams-directed sequel won't represent a cinematic endurance test in a new interview »
- Chris Eggertsen
With The Hobbit trilogy now concluded and Peter Jackson having theoretically said goodbye to Middle-earth forever, Monaghan's post got us thinking about the rest of the Fellowship. Below, we take a look at all nine members of the Fellowship and what they're up to today.
Elijah Wood (Frodo)
After Frodo said his goodbyes and departed for the Undying Lands (don't pretend you're not tearing up at the mere memory), Elijah Wood veered away from blockbuster lead roles in favour of an eclectic mix of indie movies comprising the great (Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind), the good (Everything Is Illuminated) and the ugly (Green Street).
His most memorable post-Frodo role has to be mute, cannibalistic serial killer Kevin in Frank Miller's Sin City, »
Several years ago Peter Jackson attempted to test public reaction to higher frame rates with special screenings of the first "The Hobbit" film. Running at a higher 48 frames-per-second as compared to the usual 24, the effect solved some of the problems of 3D but resulted in a Very mixed reaction from audiences.
Outside of Jackson's trilogy though, not many other filmmakers have dared to try it. James Cameron intends to use 48Fps for the "Avatar" sequels, whilst Ang Lee is currently filming his drama "Billy Lynn's Long Halftime Walk" which will run at a whopping 120Fps.
Now, "Drive" and "Only God Forgives" filmmaker Nicolas Winding Refn is having a go with word that his new film "The Neon Demon" will be at least partly shot at 60Fps. The news comes from a photo that landed on Instagram this week (via Final Reel):
- Garth Franklin
Here we go again. Peter Jackson was the first filmmaker to test the waters of higher frame rates on a major scale with "The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey." And the response wasn't great, with many complaining the super high resolution had the alternate effect of making the detailed special effects extravaganza look distractingly cheap, having the opposite effect of taking viewers out of the movie, rather than immersing them in it. But filmmakers are tickled by the possibilities. James Cameron is promising to with 48 fps for his "Avatar" sequels, Ang Lee is currently shooting his drama "Billy Lynn's Long Halftime Walk" in 120 fps and 3D, and now it would appear Nicolas Winding Refn is getting in the game. The film's co-star Jena Malone hit Instagram this past week with a clapperboard from "The Neon Demon." A pretty normal thing, right? However, as she notes with hashtag #improbablygonnagetintroubleforthis? a quick glimpse reveals that the. »
- Kevin Jagernauth
Shared universes are big business right now, and here are seven franchises that could, and should be expanded...
It's likely that by the time you finish reading this sentence a new cinematic universe will have been born. In fact, it may be one of the cinematic universes I propose later in this article. If that's the case, I apologise for my obsolescence. Furthermore, if you're reading this in the future and any of my proposed cinematic universes have come to pass and turned out awful, I also apologise.
Just know that I'm sorry, and I've a feeling that many of us are going to be sorry and that the film industry could be in a sorry and confusing mess in five years time thanks to 'Cinematic Universe Fever' (a real affliction, and currently a very common complaint on the casebooks of doctors and private physicians in Hollywood). Right now, really »
Three hobbits and an elf walk into a bar… The Lord of the Rings cast have had a mini reunion.
Dominic Monaghan, who played Merry in Peter Jackson's film series, posted a picture of himself with Billy Boyd (Pippin), Elijah Wood (Frodo) and Orlando Bloom (Legolas) to Twitter earlier today (May 13).
3 hobbits and an elf spent a few hours laughing. Precious moments. My precious moments. #Lotr #becurious pic.twitter.com/waCipbmAlX
— Dominic Monaghan (@DomsWildThings) May 13, 2015
He added the caption: "3 hobbits and an elf spent a few hours laughing. Precious moments. My precious moments. #Lotr"
Lord of the Rings cinematographer Andrew Lesnie tragically passed away at the age of 59 recently. »
The Tuesday episode was delayed a day as Laremy was caught in Dallas over the weekend, but don't fret, we're still here and we have another 67 minute of ear hole glory to deliver including our usual look at the new DVDs and Blu-rays coming out, a rube submission, a new trailer to explore, a couple of your questions, Laremy on TV and a big ol' batch of games. Hope you enjoy. For those that may be wondering, we didn't intend to skip games today, it just happened that way as we started running out of time, but we'll be getting to them all on Friday so get your submissions in! If you are on Twitter, we have a Twitter account dedicated to the podcast at @bnlpod. Give us a follow won'tchac I want to remind you that you can call in and leave us your comments, thoughts, questions, etc. directly on our Google Voice account, »
- Brad Brevet
From anime to pitch-black thrillers, here's our pick of the underappreciated movies of 1987...
Sometimes, the challenge with these lists isn't just what to put in, but what to leave out. We loved Princess Bride, but with a decent showing at the box office and a huge cult following, isn't it a bit too popular to be described as underappreciated? Likewise Joe Dante's Innerspace, a fabulously geeky, comic reworking of the 60s sci-fi flick, Fantastic Voyage.
What we've gone for instead is a mix of genre fare, dramas and animated films that may have garnered a cult following since, but didn't do well either critically or financially at the time of release. Some of the movies on our list just about made their money back, but none made anything close to the sort of returns enjoyed by the likes of 1987's biggest films - Three Men And A Baby, Fatal Attraction »
The road from script to screen is often a tortured one. There will be numerous rewrites, actor changes, problems with the budget or location and a million other issues. Making any movie, even a terrible one, is punishing work.
So it’s no wonder that movies can morph into something almost unrecognisable from their original concept. A script written as a serious drama can turn into a wacky comedy, or an action vehicle written for Tom Cruise can be retooled for Angelina Jolie instead (check out Salt for more information).
Case in point: Edgar Wright had been planning Ant-Man for a decade, getting as far as pre-production and casting before “creative differences” with Marvel boiled up. His script was hastily rewritten and a new director brought on-board, and it seems little if any of Wright’s input will remain. Likewise The Hobbit was originally planned as two movies with Guillermo del Toro helming. »
- Padraig Cotter
Agents Of S.H.I.E.L.D.’s two-part finale offered gigantic scale, future teases and a satisfying end to season 2…
This review contains spoilers.
2.21 & 2.22 S.O.S
Since I took over reviewing Agents Of S.H.I.E.L.D. a couple of months ago, analysing it more than I ever did as a just-for-fun viewer, I’ve realised one thing: this show really has improved. Even the episodes I’ve complained about seem like necessary evils when considering the big ballsy finale they were building to.
Indeed, it's with great relief that I can sit here and report that S.O.S. is a satisfying end to the season. It hasn’t always been the case, but S.O.S. truly felt like a Marvel Studios product. It was stuffed to the brim with interesting powers, engaging action and quip-happy characters, who even got some development. If you like Marvel movies, you’ll probably like this. It »
Who doesn’t love a good action movie? They’re among the most fun that Hollywood has to offer, particularly when they’re of a high quality. Later on this week, a reportedly amazing new one in Mad Max: Fury Road is hitting theaters, so to prep us all for that experience (I see it later on today, so yay for that), I wanted to do a countdown of the recent best that the genre has to offer. Essentially, every action flick since 2000 was eligible, and I whittled that down to a top ten list. It’s hardly the definitely “new millennium action movie” list, but I think it’s a pretty solid one, to say the least. You’ll be able to see the list below, which could very well be amended once Mad Max: Fury Road comes to town… Here now are my picks for the ten best »
- Joey Magidson
There’s a link worth investigating as to the outward kindness of directors like George Miller and Peter Jackson after him, and the storm of insanity brewing in their minds waiting to be thrown up onscreen. As you’ll discover this Friday, Miller’s “Mad Max: Fury Road” (our review) is essentially a two-hour chase scene that ups the ante of practical effects and narrative economy, while at the same time diving further into Miller’s deranged universe. And, of course, there’s the killer duo of Tom Hardy and Charlize Theron in the lead as Mad Max and Furiosa, alongside a supporting cast of Nicholas Hoult, Zoë Kravitz, and Rosie Huntington-Whiteley. Only occasionally do you get a glimmer of that gleeful, anarchic vibe when talking to Miller, who was the picture of kind and amiable when we met him recently in Los Angeles to talk about the long-delayed fourth »
- Charlie Schmidlin
Wyrmwood: Road of the Dead, 2015.
Directed by Kiah Roache-Turner.
During the outbreak of the zombie apocalypse a mechanic goes in search of his sister, who has been kidnapped by a group of psychotic soldiers who want to experiment on her.
It may seem like sacrilege to say it but the zombie genre is dying on its arse. Horror movies have always been notoriously cheap to produce and in this day of CGI effects replacing practical squibs and latex flesh it has never been easier to knock something together quickly and for very little physical effort, hence why the zombie movie has become so prevalent over the past few years. And with the increasing quantity comes the decreasing quality, meaning that studios putting out any old mean-spirited guff with the words “…of the Dead” in the title is supposed to »
- Gary Collinson
Mark Wahlberg and wife Rhea Durham on the Oscars' Red Carpet Mark Wahlberg and wife Rhea Durham at the Academy Awards Mark Wahlberg and wife Rhea Durham in a red-and-golden outfit are pictured above on the 2011 Academy Awards' Red Carpet, just outside the Kodak Theatre in Hollywood. The Oscar ceremony was held on Sunday, Feb. 27. Wahlberg, decades ago known as underwear model Marky Mark, was an Oscar nominee as one of the producers of Best Picture contender The Fighter – which ultimately lost to odds-on favorite The King's Speech. Mark Wahlberg was the only major player in the David O. Russell-directed boxing drama who failed to be nominated for an Academy Award in the acting categories. Co-stars Amy Adams, Melissa Leo, and Christian Bale were all shortlisted; Leo and Bale ended up winning in their respective supporting categories. Wahlberg, however, was a Best Supporting Actor nominee four years ago: for »
- D. Zhea
King Kong will rule at Universal Orlando Resort next year in the groundbreaking attraction, “Skull Island: Reign of Kong.”
The new attraction will open in the summer of 2016 at Universal’s Islands of Adventure – and will be an intense, all-new adventure brought to life in a dramatically themed environment. Skull Island: Reign of Kong will pull guests into a powerfully told story where they become part of the next generation of the Kong legend.
It begins as guests are transported deep into a wild and mysterious world, where their mission is to discover creatures of unknown origin – but where they are soon fighting for their own survival. Their journey will take them through an ancient temple inhabited by hostile natives, a perilous jungle ruled by prehistoric creatures, a foreboding underworld of caves concealing unspeakable terrors – and face-to-face with the colossal Kong himself.
Universal Creative is working closely with Peter Jackson, »
- Melissa Thompson
King Kong will rule at Universal Orlando Resort next year in the groundbreaking attraction, Skull Island: Reign of Kong. The new attraction will open in the summer of 2016 at Universal's Islands of Adventure - and will be an intense, all-new adventure brought to life in a dramatically themed environment. Skull Island: Reign of Kong will pull guests into a powerfully told story where they become part of the next generation of the Kong legend.
It begins as guests are transported deep into a wild and mysterious world, where their mission is to discover creatures of unknown origin - but where they are soon fighting for their own survival. Their journey will take them through an ancient temple inhabited by hostile natives, a perilous jungle ruled by prehistoric creatures, a foreboding underworld of caves concealing unspeakable terrors - and face-to-face with the colossal Kong himself.
Universal Creative is working closely with Peter Jackson, »
Halloween is coming to Montreal this summer, as the star-studded (both in front of and behind the camera) anthology horror film, Tales of Halloween, is scheduled to make its world premiere at the festival. JeruZalem, Turbo Kid, Deathgasm, and many more movies are also slated to screen:
Press Release -- "Montreal, May 6, 2015 – The 19th annual Fantasia International Film Festival is gearing up to rush Montreal with three weeks of cinematic inspiration and fantastical visions from across the world from July 14 until August 4, 2015.
Our complete lineup of programming and special events will be revealed in the coming weeks, but in the meantime, here’s an early First Wave Announcement of selected highlights and info to whet your appetite for the exciting things to come!
Unveiling Our 2015 Poster Art: Fantasia Continues Its Celebration Of Regional Folklore With The Wendigo
In recent editions, Fantasia has showcased poster art informed by various regional legends and myths, »
- Derek Anderson
The Fantasia International Film Festival in Montreal, now in its 19th year, is one of our favorite festivals around and a fan favorite for Sound on Sight readers for several years now. This year’s festival runs July 14 to August 4, and the first wave of films on the lineup has just been revealed.
Marvel’s highly anticipated Ant-Man, with Paul Rudd, will be the opening night film, along with the Japanese animated film Miss Hokusai. Miss Hokusai comes from Production I.G., known for its other classics including A Letter to Momo and Giovanni’s Island.
Fantasia ’15 will also be home to several World Premieres, including Tales of Halloween, a collection of 10 short horror stories, and Jeruzalem, a horror film from Israeli directors and Tiff honorees Yoav and Doron Paz (Phobidilia).
The Canadian indie Turbo Kid, which we first caught up with at Sundance this year, will also be having its »
- Brian Welk
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