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Beta Test, 2015.
Directed by Nicholas Gyeney.
Super-gamer Max Troy (Larenz Tate) is beta testing what’s promised to be a fully immersive interactive experience by Sentinel Entertainment. He quickly discovers that his in-game actions are being mirrored in the real world by the mind-controlled Orson Creed (Manu Bennett), a mega-tough disgruntled ex-employee of Sentinel. After completing various ‘game’ missions with the help of his real-world avatar, Max decides to take down the Sentinel corporation and diffuse their evil scheme.
Nicholas Gyeney co-writes, co-produces and directs a fun and simple throwback to the action movies of the 80’s with a fun high concept. Gyeney has pitched his film as a cross between Die Hard and The Firm, but its low-budget future-shock setting of a corporation-ruled city conjures both Vehoeven’s Robocop and Cameron’s original Terminator.
It begins promisingly, with »
- Mark Bartlett
Conspiracy theorists obsessed with spinning false-flag scenarios may appreciate the stoking of their paranoia during “Beta Test,” a weirdly retro and energetically preposterous thriller about a video-game mogul’s plot to seriously restrict the right to bear arms. But the only other conceivable audience for this low-budget, high-concept sci-fi action-thriller would be B-movie fanatics with a deep-rooted fondness for the sort of ’80s direct-to-video concoctions that once littered shelves at Blockbuster outlets. At one point, a character here pointedly asks for soda and popcorn as he watches action unfold on big-screen monitors. In real-life, however, viewers more likely will be consuming brewskies and microwaved burritos as the absurdities proceed apace.
The plot has something to do with a video-game developer who’s been implanted with a device that more or less turns him into a real-world first-person shooter, and has something else to do with an agoraphobic beta-tester forced to »
- Joe Leydon
To help sift through the increasing number of new releases (independent or otherwise), the Weekly Film Guide is here! Below you’ll find basic plot, personnel and cinema information for all of this week’s fresh offerings.
For July, we’ve also put together a list for the entire month. We’ve included this week’s list below, complete with information on screening locations for films in limited release.
See More: Here Are All the Upcoming Movies in Theaters for July 2016
Here are the films opening theatrically in the U.S. the week of Friday, July 22. All synopses provided by distributor unless listed otherwise.
Director: Galen T. Chu, Mike Thermeier
Synopsis: Scrat’s epic pursuit of his elusive acorn catapults him outside of Earth, where he accidentally sets off a series of cosmic events that transform and threaten the planet. »
- Steve Greene
Production for Arrow: Season 5 recently began with the series returning to the CW on Wednesday, October 5th at 8 pm. Many individuals, including myself, were disappointed with the Season 4 Finale, let alone the entirety of Season 4. I have always tried to find the best in Arrow, and have continuously watched the series trying to give it the benefit of the doubt. At the conclusion of Season 4 I began to compare all of the seasons. Obviously seasons 1 and 2 were the best, but I began to think what it was that attracted me to the series during those seasons.
Season 1 was great because it was the “origin”. I looked forward to the island scenes wondering how they would escape, and would then be eager to see how the flashback scenes meshed with the current timeline, which they did. There were two story lines, but each one gave the audience pieces to the overall plot. »
- Mark Cook
The idea of games-play merging with reality is nothing new, but it's always yielded mixed results. From Gamer to upcoming The Call, the idea is ripe for compelling stories.
About the film:
Beta Test revolves around Max Troy, a Seattle-based video game champion and game tester who is about to test the latest game sensation from global video game juggernaut, Sentinel. As Max begins his procedural dissection of the game, he begins to realize this new game is not like any other. As Max completes new tasks, events in the real world begin to mirror them. Soon, Max [Continued ...] »
There’s an upside to getting killed off Chicago P.D.
Arrow has tapped Josh Segarra — who recurred on the NBC drama as Justin Voight before meeting his demise in last month’s finale — to play the series-regular role of Star City’s new district attorney, Adrian Chase, our sister site Deadline reports.
The character serves as an ally to Mayor Oliver Queen and aims to clean up the streets through the legal system.
As TVLine first reported, Chase is described as an “irrepressibly »
During this time he also reconnects with his parents Christopher (Chris Noth), a successful novelist who’s as recognized for his Page Six worthy antics as he is for his writing, and Diane (Mary-Louise Parker), a sophisticated woman, who has a new appreciation of controlled substances and is at a crossroads in her marriage and her life.
Read More: ‘Quitters’ Exclusive Trailer & Poster: A Smart-Aleck Teen Escapes His Troubled Home For a New Family
“Chronically Metropolitan” was written by Nick Shutt and will have its world premiere at the Nantucket Film Festival that runs June 22-27.
Watch the trailer by clicking here.
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- Liz Calvario
“Beta Test” follows Seattle-based video game champion Max Troy (Larenz Tate) who is about to test the latest release from global juggernaut Sentinel, but he quickly realizes that the game isn’t like any other: Whenever he completes a new task, real world events mirror them. Soon, Max discovers that Sentinel is at the center of a global conspiracy and realizes the game’s protagonist Orson Creed (Manu Bennett) is actually a real person. Max and Creed team up to uncover the conspiracy and stop the violence from overtaking their city. Watch the exclusive trailer for the film above.
Read More: Why The CW Deserves Your Attention
“Beta Test” is written and directed by Nicholas Gyeney. His previous credits include “The Falling,” about a police officer forced to decide the fate of the entire world by battling forces of good and evil, and “The Penitent Man,” about a psychologist who wants to change the course of his future. “Beta Test” stars Manu Bennett, best known for playing Deathstroke on the CW’s superhero TV series “Arrow,” Gallic gladiator Crixus in the Starz series “Spartacus,” and orc commander Azog the Defiler in Peter Jackson’s “Hobbit” trilogy. Co-star Larenz Tate has previously appeared in Best Picture-winner “Crash,” “Meance II Society,” “Ray,” and a recurring role on the FX series “Rescue Me.”
“Beta Test” will be released in the following theaters via AMC on July 22nd:
Los Angeles (Orange 30 AMC + Atlantic AMC)
Seattle ( Woodinville AMC, Kent Station AMC, Siff Uptown)
Atlanta (North Dekalb Mall 16)
Chicago (South Barrington AMC)
New York (Empire 25, Jersey 20 AMC’s)
Washington D.C. (Loudon 11 AMC)
Houston (Studio 30 AMC)
Tampa (Veterans Expressway 24 AMC)
San Francisco/Oakland (Theaters Tbd)
Phoenix (Arizona Center AMC)
Philadelphia (Neshaminy 24 AMC)
Read More: Does the CW Have a Season Two Problem?
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Related storiesThe CW Upfronts Preview: 'Supergirl' Leads Its Comic Book DominationWhat 'Batman V Superman' Gets Wrong That 'The Flash' Gets So Right'Batman v Superman': 11 TV Series To Help You Dig Deeper In the DC Universe After 'Dawn' »
- Vikram Murthi
On the heels of the news that Jen Lilley is leaving her Days of Our Lives role of scheme queen Theresa Donovan comes word that the also-exiting Kate Mansi has been recast as troubled ingénue Abigail Dimera: Marci Miller will make her debut as Chad’s bride this fall, Soap Opera Digest reports.
Though a soap rookie, the actress has appeared in a bunch of short films and stars in the upcoming Children of the Corn: Runaway and Death Race 2050, Roger Corman’s upgrade of his 1975 cult classic, »
The producers of Arrow have teased some big changes in season four of their CW show. The series has always done very well for the network in the ratings but how will these changes affect the numbers? Will viewership rise or fall? Could Arrow TV show be cancelled or is it almost guaranteed to be renewed for a fifth season? Stay tuned!
On Arrow, billionaire playboy Oliver Queen (Stephen Amell) was ship-wrecked on a remote island in the South China Sea and presumed dead for five years. He returned home a changed man, bent on righting the wrongs of his family and fighting injustice. The cast also includes Katie Cassidy, David Ramsey, Willa Holland, Paul Blackthorne, Emily Bett Rickards, Manu Bennett, and John Barrowman.
The ratings are typically the best indication of a show's likelihood of staying on the air. The higher the ratings (particularly the 18-49 demo), the better »
After watching last night’s episode of The Flash I don’t know how to really feel about it. It felt a little more or less like I have already watched this episode before. If you were to compare the timeline of this season of The Flash and the second season of Arrow they are almost identical. From the overconfident hero thinking he has everything under control, to the army of minions destroying a city, to the tragic death of a parental figure at the end of the show. Last week’s episode gave the audience such a high that following it with “Invincible” was a major let down.
The confidence of Barry had grown from last week’s episode since traveling inside the speedforce. He kept referencing the speedforce being on his side like he was a Jedi going up against a Sith Lord. Barry’s confidence prove to »
- Michael Connally
If all the good guys are evil over on Earth-2, does that mean that all the bad guys are heroes? Is there are a version of Manu Bennett's Deathstroke that saves cats from trees and pulls people from burning buildings? Likewise, is there a version of Malcolm Merlyn that's actually protecting Star City instead of trying to destroy it? We saw a version of this with Michael Rowe's Floyd Lawton, who was a Central City police officer on Earth-2. Perhaps the key to defeating Zoom will be gathering the heroic versions of the Rogues? So many questions but with only two episodes, we'll probably not have a lot of answers, at least not this season. Update: 2nd Clip added via The CW. Katie Cassidy Guest Stars As Black Siren – After Zoom (guest star Teddy Sears) unleashes an army of Earth-2 meta-humans on Central City, Barry (Grant Gustin) is »
Set in the fantasy realm of the Four Lands, decades after Earth as we know it destroyed itself, The Shannara Chronicles season one told a story of magic, elves, demons, druids (well, a druid) and important blue stones. There was also quite a lot of gratuitous showering involving its nubile young castmembers, if we recall.
Here's a link to our spoiler-filled reviews of the series, and an interview with Elf King himself, Mr John Rhys-Davies.
Norman Reedus is set to attend Wizard World’s first-ever cruise! The cruise sets sail this December. Also: Death Race 2050 behind-the-scenes photos released in honor of Roger Corman’s 90th birthday, Cavity Colors’ Leatherface pin and Machete Zombie patch, The Curse of Sleeping Beauty trailer and stills, and Sherwood Horror Kickstarter details.
Norman Reedus on Wizard World Cruise: Press Release: “El Segundo, Calif., April 5, 2016 – Wizard World, Inc. (Otcbb: Wizd) and Rose Tours today announced its first Wizard World Cruise, a pop-culture, comic con-themed, three-night journey on the Norwegian Sky, December 2-5, from Miami to Nassau, Bahamas. The event will feature celebrities including Norman Reedus as well as an Artist Alley with noted comics creators, cosplay contests, exhibitors, parties, video game tournaments and more.
- Tamika Jones
New York – Called “the best looking fantasy series on TV” (IGN) and “damn fine television” (Collider), MTV’s hit show The Shannara Chronicles Season One arrives on DVD June 7, 2016. Executive produced and written for television by Alfred Gough & Miles Millar (Smallville) and executive produced by Jon Favreau (Iron Man), the lavish fantasy series is based on the 26-volume book series by Terry Brooks. The Shannara Chronicles premiere on MTV was viewed 14.6 million times across linear and digital platforms and delivered the best single-week performance on iTunes ever for an MTV series.
Set thousands of years in the future, The Shannara Chronicles follows three heroes, Elf-Human hybrid Wil (Austin Butler, Arrow), Elvin Princess Amberle (Poppy Drayton, Downton Abbey), and Human Rover Eretria (Ivana Baquero, Pan’s Labryinth), as they embark on a quest to stop an evil Demon army from destroying the world. The show also features Manu Bennett (The »
- ComicMix Staff
This review contains spoilers.
1.6 Star City 2046
Set in a futuristic Star(ling) City with new versions of the Green Arrow and Deathstroke duking it out across an almost-totally-destroyed cityscape, this week’s Legends Of Tomorrow had a lot going for it. Unlike most of the prior episodes, Star City 2046 wasn’t shackled to the ongoing quest to defeat Vandal Savage and instead allowed the Waverider crew to cover all-new ground.
And, when they were out exploring this catastrophically-ruined locale, a lot of fun was had by all. For one, we got to see Dominic Purcell’s Heat Wave and Wentworth Miller’s Captain Cold showcasing how different they’ve become, as the former wished to stay in this criminal’s paradise while the latter wanted to get back to saving the world. »
As revealed in the closing moments of last week’s “Legends,” when our team accidentally crashes in Star City, 2046, Oliver is Mia, and a new Green Arrow has taken his place — Connor Hawke (Joseph David-Jones). DC Comics fans know Connor as the illegitimate child of Oliver and Sandra “Moonday” Hawke, but the “Legends” iteration of the character is unrelated to the “Arrow” hero (perhaps because Oliver already has plenty of paternal drama to deal with on “Arrow” without adding another estranged son to the mix).
In this desolate potential future, the Legends discover that they never stop Vandal Savage (Casper Crump) and never return home. Star City is in ruins and overrun by criminals, »
- Laura Prudom
Will Stallone return as Machine Gun Joe?!?
An outrageous action-packed film and reboot of the original Death Race 2000, Roger Corman’s Death Race 2050 began filming February 8 in Peru. Filled with the full-throttle mayhem and black-hearted humor, this all-new film drops the flag on a phalanx of automotive gladiators who earn points for killing pedestrians — and their fellow drivers. Roger Corman’s Death Race 2050is an original release from Universal 1440 Entertainment, a production entity of Universal Pictures Home Entertainment. The film will be available exclusively on Blu-ray™, DVD and Digital HD in 2016.
In the decades since well-known independent film pioneer and Academy Award® winner Roger Corman first put the iconic anti-hero Frankenstein into the driver’s seat in Death Race 2000, this over-the-top cult classic has hurtled headlong toward cinematic immortality. Among the most enduring of the prolific producer’s legion of memorable films, Death Race 2000 has inspired a »
- Tom Stockman
Fans of superhero TV have much to look forward to next week when DC’s Legends of Tomorrow leaps thirty years into the future in the episode “Star City 2046.” The extended promo video, which can be viewed at the top, is evidence of comic book fantasies turned reality.
Not only will we see the team meet the Green Arrow of the future, Connor Hawke, but a grizzled Oliver Queen as well. Apparently Deathstroke is also wandering the post-apocalyptic streets, although it has yet to be confirmed what actor is under the mask. Manu Bennett has been wrapped up in other projects lately and no announcement was made concerning his reprisal of the role, so don’t be too surprised if the world’s deadliest assassin doesn’t shed his mask.
Speaking of two Green Arrows, producer Marc Guggenheim recently said the following (via Collider):
“We’re not only introducing »
- Eric Joseph
Well this came out of nowhere. It seems as though an official sequel to the cult film Death Race 2000 is now currently in production under the watchful eye of original producer Roger Corman. Details of Death Race 2050 are scarce, but it is said to have a similar plot to the original but will incorporate virtual reality.
“This is an amazing opportunity for me and millions of Death Race 2000 fans to experience the intensity, thrills and dark humor of the original, fueled by a terrific young cast, spectacular vehicles and side-splitting action, literally,” says Corman in the official press release. “Roger Corman’s Death Race 2050 puts the pedal to the metal to bring this enduring franchise to a whole new level.”
- Luke Owen
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