8 items from 2014
Tom Jolliffe on the must-see straight-to-video action films of 2014...
If you’re a little fed up of the never ending stream of remakes, kid friendly PG13 (12A or 15 here) CGI heavy theatrics and Marvel/DC action films that fill up the multiplexes, or you’re no stranger to the unrepentant, simple delights of a bit of straight to video (or Netflix) action, then here is a list of the best to look out for this year.
As big screen action caters more and more for younger audiences, straight to video still largely offers a bit more adult entertainment. What it might lack in big budget thrills it makes up for with F-bombs and gallons of blood (if that’s your thing). As for myself, alongside a steady upbringing of Arnold Schwarzenegger, Sly Stallone and Bruce Willis in the late 80’s and 90’s, I’ve also had more than my share »
- Gary Collinson
Gal Gadot wasn’t everyone’s first choice for the role of Wonder Woman in the upcoming Batman Vs. Superman (we’re sticking with that title for now). However, as with any superhero character, it’s hard to come up with everybody’s idea of the ‘perfect’ actress for such a role. Obviously the filmmakers want someone feminine, strong, and also looks like they could be an Amazonian warrior. The last time I checked, not too many actresses that fill every criteria as well as being able to act. Gal Gadot isn’t letting any negativity get her down though, and has taken to Facebook to post a pic of the muscle she’s gradually gaining.
The results are pretty good, but some people wont be happy until she’s bordering on Lou Ferrigno levels of muscularness. Most important to me is the performance though, and in a cast that »
- Luke Ryan Baldock
I just discovered (via io9) the fan-produced series Star Trek Continues, which intends to follow the crew of the USS Enterprise across the fourth and fifth years of its five-year mission. But to call it “fan-produced” is misleading. That makes it sound smaller and less incredible than it is. This isn’t a reflection of or an homage to something greater — this is Star Trek. This is so pitch-perfect a re-creation that it gave me chills, then it made me cry tears of geek joy, and then I forgot I was watching anything other than Star Trek. The sets and the costumes and the props are perfect. The lighting and the direction and the pacing is perfect. It’s even shot in the old-fashioned TV aspect ratio of 4:3. I felt like I was watching episodes from the 60s that I had somehow missed.
Two episodes of Continues have been released so far, »
- MaryAnn Johanson
Bodybuilding documentary “Generation Iron” was expected to have a short life in theaters before being released to streaming service Hulu, where much of its audience was expected to be found.
But the film, narrated by Mickey Rourke, has become a hit for director Vlad Yudin and his production shingle, which released the documentary on Sept. 20. Pic is produced with fitness magazine publisher American Media Inc.
New documentary has earned nearly $850,000 in the U.S., and it’s expected to pass the $1 million mark overseas. The film’s currently playing in theaters around the U.K., with screenings in Russia and other countries to follow. Overseas rights to the film have been sold to Ksm Film, in Germany; Madman Entertainment, for Australia and New Zealand; and Brazil’s Probiotica. »
- Marc Graser
New How I Met Your Mother season 9,episode 16 official spoilers,plotline revealed by CBS. Recently,CBS revealed the new,official,synopsis/spoilers for their upcoming "How I Met Your Mother" episode 16 of season 9. The episode is entitled, "How Your Mother Met Me," and it sounds like it'll be pretty interesting as the Mother revisits the memory of how she met Ted, and more. In the new,16th episode press release: On the show's 200th episode, the mother is going to recount how she met Ted. Press release number 2: On the 200th episode, The Mother will recount how she met Ted and what she’s been up to for the past eight years. The beautiful Rachel Bilson is going to return as Cindy. Cheat Tweet: Find out how The Mother met Ted! Was it love @ 1st sight? #HaveyoumetTed @SRachelBilson returns #Himym 1/27 @8pm Et/Pt http://bit.ly/1aaYYJW. Guest stars »
Kellan Lutz ‘The Legend of Hercules’: New Summit release has 0% Rotten Tomatoes approval rating (photo: Gaia Weiss and shirtless Kellan Lutz in ‘The Legend of Hercules’) Starring Kellan Lutz, best known as the hunky and likable vampire Emmett in the Twilight movies, The Legend of Hercules opens today, January 10, 2014, in North America. That’s the good news for Kellan Lutz fans. Now, the bad news: The Legend of Hercules isn’t about to become the next Spartacus — or even the next Gladiator. “The only thing epic about The Legend of Hercules is what a failure it is,” writes Stephanie Merry in the Washington Post, while Newsday‘s Rafer Guzman’s complains that “this painfully feeble version of the strongman story fails on every level, from Lutz’s wooden acting to the styrofoam special effects.” In fact, out of 35 reviews, the Summit Entertainment / Lionsgate Pictures release has a 0% approval rating »
- Zac Gille
Review of The Legend of Hercules starring Kellan Lutz. Kellan Lutz has the muscle but lacks heroic charisma to lift the film above mediocrity. Veteran action director Renny Harlin (Die Hard 2, Cliffhanger) delivers the first of two Hercules movies planned for 2014 with The Legend of Hercules (originally titled Hercules: The Legend Begins) and probably squashes chances for a blood-and-sandals revival in the process. Maybe, just maybe, the 54-year-old Harlin is a fan of the silly Sons of Hercules movies and its ‘60s TV spinoff (like me!) or the ‘80s movies with Lou Ferrigno and aims for a modern-day, 3D version of family-friendly, intentionally silly B-moviemaking. Sadly, action fans in search of pulpy thrills leave the swift-paced adventure wondering how a veteran action director like Harlin botches such an audience-friendly action hero like Hercules. The laughs unfold with abandon throughout the movie although many of them felt unintentional to me. »
A towering figure of Greek mythology, the half-human, half-god strong man Hercules has always been something of a schlock icon where movies are concerned, from the wave of Italian-made, sword-and-sandal cheapies that broke upon these shores in the 1950s and ‘60s to their 1980s Cannon Films derivants starring Lou Ferrigno. The song remains very much the same for “The Legend of Hercules,” the first of two dueling 2014 tentpoles to reach theaters, and every inch the one that might have been commissioned by the late impresario Alexander Salkind in his “Santa Claus: The Movie” period. Costly in price ($75 million) but totally kitsch in execution, from its wooden dialogue to its low-rent international cast and its very CG-looking CGI, “Legend” is ideal fodder for undiscriminating 12-year-old boys on a lazy weekend afternoon, though even they may opt to wait for the Rock in MGM/Paramount’s Brett Ratner-directed “Hercules,” due in July. »
- Scott Foundas
8 items from 2014
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