17 items from 2015
An excellent complement to the novel, simplifying the science without dumbing it down yet retaining the suspense and urgency of its interplanetary stranding. I’m “biast” (pro): mostly really like the cast and the director
I’m “biast” (con): love the book (and we all know the book is always better than the movie)
I have read the source material (and I love love love it)
(what is this about? see my critic’s minifesto)
Andy Weir’s novel The Martian is one of those very rare books that I almost literally could not put down. I mostly only have time to read during my relatively brief and nondaily commute, and even books I’m enjoying the hell out of will get put aside out of necessity — because I lack the time — for days or even a week if I don’t have the opportunity of otherwise-useless (ie, »
- MaryAnn Johanson
The watchdog group, in a statement issued Thursday, said the ethnicities of key characters in the movie are significantly less Asian than their characters in the 2014 novel by Andy Weir.
Scott’s reps did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
“This feel-good movie, which has attracted Oscar buzz, shouldn’t get any awards for casting,” said Manaa founding president Guy Aoki.
Manaa noted that Weir describes Nasa’s director of Mars operations Dr. Venkat Kapoor as an Asian-Indian character who identifies religiously as being “a Hindu.” The group pointed out that in Scott’s film, his name is changed to Vincent Kapoor, and he’s played by British black actor Chiwetel Ejiofor, who says his father was “a Hindu” but that his mother was “Baptist.”
Manaa also noted that Mindy Park, »
- Dave McNary
Exclusive: Ascot Elite inks physical and Est deal for Netflix series in German-speaking Europe.
Ten episodes of the drama based on the famed explorer’s adventures in Kublai Khans’ court in 13th century China will be released in December on DVD, Blu-ray and through Est channels.
The first season of the high-end drama, produced by TWC and Electus, premiered on Netflix last December and reportedly cost $90m to make.
Ennis Hensley, president of international sales and distribution at The Weinstein Company, said: “Ascot Elite has been a trusted and long-time partner of The Weinstein Company on the feature film side so it was an easy choice to partner with them on the first season of [link »
- email@example.com (Andreas Wiseman)
After crafting the scores for Blackhat, The Town, Kingdom of Heaven, The East, and more, composer Harry Gregson-Williams reteamed with Ridley Scott for The Martian, the film adaptation of Andy Weir‘s best-selling novel. It tells the story of Astronaut Mark Watney (played brilliantly and charismatically by Matt Damon — check out our review here) as he struggles to get off the Red Planet.
We had the chance to recently speak with him about his work and the composer was quite happy with the score and eager to hear of our fondness for both the film and the music. In his words, jokingly of course, if you were to like some of the films to which he provided music, you may be in the minority. This time however, we’re willing to bet that nearly everyone on the planet will be in the majority and love The Martian.
We truly enjoyed catching up with Harry, »
- Marc Ciafardini
The Martian, 2015.
Directed by Ridley Scott.
During a manned mission to Mars, Astronaut Mark Watney is presumed dead after a fierce storm and left behind by his crew. But Watney has survived and finds himself stranded and alone on the hostile planet. With only meager supplies, he must draw upon his ingenuity, wit and spirit to subsist and find a way to signal to Earth that he is alive.
The Martian is a 142 minute movie that opens up with the above mentioned failed Nasa mission that ends up deserting team botanist Mark Watney (Matt Damon) on Mars thanks to a hailstorm. It’s a decision by director Ridley Scott (whose movies are all over the map in terms of quality lately) that pays »
- Robert Kojder
Perhaps the best that can be said for Mikael Hafstrom’s “Shanghai” is that in spite the five years it sat on the shelf before puttering into U.S. theaters this weekend, it’s far from the type of hide-the-children disaster that its release strategy would seem to suggest. The bad news: It’s nonetheless not that hard to imagine why the Weinstein Co. was in no particular hurry to get it out. Despite boasting a lush period setting and plenty of recognizable stars from five different major territories, this derivative, ploddingly plotted WWII-set thriller goes through all the motions of an old-school wartime spy pic with plenty of technical competence but zero panache, the filmic equivalent of a bar band working through one last Skynyrd cover just before last call. Released in most Asian markets back in 2010, the film seems highly unlikely to add much to its tally in belated Stateside release. »
- Andrew Barker
The Martian is Ridley Scott's best film in nearly 15 years. Part science lesson, part Robinson Crusoe drama, this is exciting and engaging filmmaking that reminds you just how good the seminal sci-fi director can be with the right script and the right story.
Helping this Matt-Damon-left-on-Mars survival thriller is a who's who of acting, producing and writing talent. From producer Simon Kinberg (X-Men: Days of Future Past, Sherlock Holmes) to screenwriter Drew Goddard (Cabin in the Woods, Daredevil), there's no weak link.
The crew that accidentally leave Damon's biologist Mark Watney on the red planet - Jessica Chastain, Michael Peña, Kate Mara, Sebastian Stan, Aksel Hennie - are good enough to warrant their own spin-off movie (though that would make absolutely no sense), while the Nasa bods back home are similarly strong, notably space programme head honcho Jeff Daniels, PR guru Kristen Wiig and Mars mission supervisor Chiwetel Ejiofor. »
If the last few years are any indication, Hollywood has a revitalized interest in turning their head towards the vastness of space. Rather than a focus on alien-occupied science-fiction, we’ve seen a string of major-budget fall releases that question our place in the universe and the boundless exploration therein. The latest in this category, Ridley Scott‘s The Martian, lacks the wall-to-wall tension of Alfonso Cuarón’s Gravity or the ambition of Christopher Nolan’s Interstellar, but for the most part, it’s a rollicking space procedural that depends on some logic, and a great deal of luck.
Adapted by Drew Goddard from Andy Weir‘s originally self-published novel, the story finds Matt Damon‘s Mark Watney as a lone astronaut/botanist on Mars, deserted after his Ares 3 crew presumed him dead when an evacuation went wrong. Despite his miraculous survival — one of the first of many fortuitous occurrences — this presumption soon reaches Earth, »
- Jordan Raup
"Out from the blackness comes something we thought we might never see again: a decent Ridley Scott movie." The announcement comes from the Guardian's Henry Barnes and more than a few reviewers agree with him. Critics are praising Drew Goddard's screenplay, based on the novel by Andy Weir, Dariusz Wolski's 3D cinematography, Matt Damon's lead performance and the diversity of the cast: Jessica Chastain, Kristen Wiig, Jeff Daniels, Michael Pena, Sean Bean, Kate Mara, Sebastian Stan, Aksel Hennie, Chiwetel Ejiofor, Mackenzie Davis, Benedict Wong, Donald Glover and Eddy Ko. We've also got the trailer and a clip. » - David Hudson »
With ideas like cryogenic sleep and warp speed, the movies have a tendency to make space travel look easy. Not Ridley Scott’s “The Martian,” an enthralling and rigorously realistic outer-space survival story in which Matt Damon plays a Nasa botanist stranded on the Red Planet after a sandstorm forces his crewmates to abort mission. Like Robinson Crusoe on Mars, Damon’s “right stuff” hero has to get by on his own wits and “science the sh–” out of his predicament. It won’t be easy, but it is possible — and that’s the exhilarating thrill of both Andy Weir’s speculative-fiction novel and screenwriter Drew Goddard’s “science fact” adaptation. Considering that the United States hasn’t launched a manned space mission since 2011, “The Martian” should do far more than just make Fox a ton of money; it could conceivably rekindle interest in the space program and inspire a new generation of future astronauts. »
- Peter Debruge
“The Martian” is being sold on Matt Damon, but as far as we’re concerned (and not to diss Damon, who we love), two of the things we’re most excited about in Ridley Scott’s latest are the potential humor — a big part of the book by Andy Weir, and reportedly maintained in Drew Goddard’s script — and the deep bench of a supporting cast. Read More: Matt Damon Steps Into A Storm In First Clip From 'The Martian' Both are firmly on display in the second clip from the movie (swiftly on the tails of the first), which debuted over at Moviefone in the run-up to the movie’s Tiff premiere tomorrow. Featuring Jeff Daniels, Kristen Wiig, Chiwetel Ejiofor, Sean Bean, Benedict Wong, a guy who looks suspiciously like Marc Maron, and, surprisingly in the most prominent role here, “Community” star Donald Glover, it sees Glover »
- Oliver Lyttelton
It’s the last weekend of August, dear readers, and the summer movie season is at an end. But there’s still plenty of cool stuff coming to our theaters this year, from James Bond to Star Wars and everything in between. This week’s installment of Trailer Trashin’ takes a look at The Martian, the upcoming sci-fi film from director Ridley Scott.
Premise: A manned mission to Mars goes awry, and astronaut Mark Watney (Matt Damon) is presumed dead and left behind on the planet by his crew. Watney fights to survive in the harsh environment and to signal to others that he is still alive. Upon discovering Watney’s signal Nasa, scientists all around Earth, and his crew members collaborate to find a way to rescue him.
My take: English filmmaker Ridley Scott has had a good relationship with science-fiction. The two films that helped put him on »
- Timothy Monforton
Netflix has been creating more and more original content over the last few months. The end of 2014 saw the show Marco Polo air on the streaming service and it has now been announced that the show has been renewed for a second season.
The second season will run for 10 episodes and will go into production later this year. Marco Polo is produced by The Weinstein Company and Electus and stars Lorenzo Richelmy as Marco Polo alongside a cast that also includes Benedict Wong, Joan Chen, Zhu Zhu, Chin Han, Olivia Cheng, Tom Wu, Remy Hii, Uli Latukefu, Mahesh Jadu, Claudia Kim and Rick Yune.
The post Netflix’s Marco Polo renewed for Season 2 appeared first on Flickering Myth. »
- Thomas Roach
The semi-annual Television Critics Association’s winter press tour is well underway, and Netflix is taking the opportunity to shed some light on its future slate of originals. It was recently revealed that Marco Polo, a historical epic that is the streaming giant’s most ambitious series to date, has been picked for a second season of 13 episodes, to premiere sometime next year.
Production on the second season of Marco Polo will commence later this year. The show received mixed reviews in its first season, but it represents a huge step for Netflix’s original programming, so the streaming giant was always sure to stand behind it for multiple seasons. The John Fusco-created drama stars Lorenzo Richelmy as Marco and features Benedict Wong, Joan Chen, Zhu Zhu, Chin Han, Olivia Cheng, Tom Wu, Remy Hii, Uli Latukefu, Mahesh Jadu, Claudia Kim and Rick Yune.
Netflix also announced premiere dates for several upcoming originals. »
- Isaac Feldberg
When Netflix released Marco Polo on December 12th, it made an ambitious foray into the historical epic genre. This attempt was met with mixed reviews from critics, but no matter the general consensus about Marco Polo, the show will get at least one more season to build up its audience. Netflix has renewed it for a second season, which will include ten more episodes.
Marco Polo follows the adventures of the famed explorer (played by Lorenzo Richelmy) as he journeys to the East and encounters the wondrous world of Mongol leader Kublai Khan (Benedict Wong). The show's first season spans ten hour-long episodes, which Netflix subscribers can stream on-demand.
Response to the show's first season was split right down the middle. Many critics offered negative reviews, and several of those critics found Marco Polo to be a pale imitation of a certain HBO program that also features graphic violence, epic scale, »
- Sam Gutelle
Netflix, the world's leading Internet TV network, today announced a new ten episode chapter in the adventures of Marco Polo and upcoming premiere dates for some of its highly anticipated new original series. Marco Polo, the sweeping adventure that follows the famed explorer's exploits in Kublai Khan's court in 13th century China, will return to delight the global Netflix audience. Creator John Fusco's tale of Marco's journey will continue for 10 all-new episodes as Marco navigates Kublai Khan's world of greed, betrayal, sexual intrigue and rivalry. Fusco serves as executive producer along with Dan Minahan. Academy-Award nominated directors Joachim Rønning and Espen Sandberg also serve as executive producers. Season 1 was shot in Malaysia, Kazakhstan and Italy. Produced by The Weinstein Company, the series stars Lorenzo Richelmy as Marco and features Benedict Wong, Joan Chen, Zhu Zhu, Chin Han, Olivia Cheng, Tom Wu, Remy Hii, Uli Latukefu, Mahesh Jadu, »
The epic historical-based exploration adventure will get 10 new episodes taking place in Kublai Khan’s 13th century China.
“Daredevil” will begin on Friday, April 10.
Here’s the full press release, more to come:
Netflix, the world’s leading Internet TV network, today announced a new ten episode chapter in the adventures of Marco Polo and upcoming premiere dates for some of its highly anticipated new original series.
- Tony Maglio
17 items from 2015
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