8 items from 2015
By Hank Reineke
My older sister had been a high-school friend of one of the author’s daughters. Though the passing of time has made the chronology of events a bit hazy, I’m guessing it was through that friendship that I was first introduced to Warren Murphy’s teenage son. It was the son who – upon learning I was a big fan of his father’s pulp-paperback novels – graciously gifted me a personally autographed copy of The Destroyer #3: Chinese Puzzle (1972). This now-tattered paperback proudly sits on my book shelf to this very day. This, I guess, would have been about 1978. I was seventeen years old. I’m fifty-four now and admit I hadn’t »
- firstname.lastname@example.org (Cinema Retro)
Directed by John Glen
With the release of Skyfall this month, critics have cited the major departures from the Bond formula taken by that film. They credit Daniel Craig for bringing a modern edge to a character that had become ridiculous in the Brosnan years. It’s easy to forget that similar claims were made about Timothy Dalton back in the late ‘80s. The classically trained actor brought grace to the role with his first appearance in 1987’s The Living Daylights. That film retained the look and feeling of the Roger Moore films while starting the shift towards a more realistic hero. The change became a lot more dramatic in Dalton’s second outing two years later. Licence to Kill pared down the excesses of the typical Bond film and crafted a more personal tale of revenge. While »
- Dan Heaton
It's not that long ago that a sequel that did 65% of the original's business was deemed a success. Tell that to Spider-Man today...
When Tim Burton's Batman Returns was released in the summer of 1992, Warner Bros had high hopes. It was the follow-up to his 1989 Batman movie, which had shattered the record for a film's opening weekend at the Us box office (marking the first $40m+ opening on record in the States).
Batman went on to gross $251m at the American box office alone, and is credited as being a major stepping stone in the invention of the modern blockbuster (after the likes of Jaws and Star Wars). Hopes were not small for the sequel.
Even as late as the early 1990s, the main indicator of a film's commercial success lay in its American box office takings. By that kind of measure, this summer's Terminator: Genisys would have been »
The closing chapter of the Lethal Weapon movie saga was a film that, tonally, was a long way away from the movie that started the series.
In the original Lethal Weapon back in 1987, the character of Martin Riggs - as played by Mel Gibson - was on the verge of suicide, working uneasily alongside Danny Glover's Roger Murtaugh. By the end of Lethal Weapon 4, as the song Why Can't We Be Friends played out, it was all happy families. With babies. Riggs had a wife and child, any hints of suicide were long gone, and the film feels a lot more like a comedy than an action thriller.
Comedy sequels, generally speaking, tend to suck. The same joke told twice is rarely as funny as the first time, after all – which is why comedic follow-ups tend to fall by the wayside, desperate to tap into those original hi-jinks, but unable to find new and creative ways of doing so. The best comedy sequels, of course, are those that manage to transfer what worked about the first film into a second whilst maintaining a sense of freshness that stops it from feeling like just a “lazy rehash” (cough: The Hangover: Part II – awful).
Truth is, there are very few comedy sequels that are actually better than the movies they were inspired by. That’s not to say there aren’t a few exceptions to that rule, but for the most part it’s one that sticks. It’s also not to say that there aren’t any worthwhile comedy sequels at all; there are, »
- Sam Hill
Our latest letters round up! Swearing at Den Of Geek, and why on earth do we talk about 50 Shades Of Grey?
Right then! A few weeks have passed, so it must be time for another Den Of Geek Letters Page (Tm). (Actually, we've not trademarked that). We're back to normal here, so we're unlikely to be found in the comments. That said, if you want to write in - the details are at the bottom of the post - then we'll try and get your missive into our next letters round up.
But enough waffle from us! On with the latest batch of correspondence...
Foul Language & Rene Russo
Shit, prick, asshole, fuck, arsehole, bastardised, shit.
Jarring isn't it. Why are DoG articles now seemingly using words such as these?
I appreciate the last 'shit' instance along with the 'fuck' are references to well-known lines in the movie but is this »
Having debuted on History in January, the exciting miniseries Sons of Liberty is now available on Google Play (clickHere) and Amazon (clickHere). We recently caught up with actor Dean Norris, who stars as Ben Franklin in this 3-part look at our rich American History. Sons of Liberty is a dramatizing of the early American Revolution events in Boston, Massachusetts, the start of the Revolutionary War, and the negotiations of the Second Continental Congress which resulted in the drafting and signing of the 1776 United States Declaration of Independence.
Directed by Kari Skogland, the series theme music was composed by Hans Zimmer. Best known as DEA Agent Schrader on Breaking Bad, Dean Norris currently stars in Under the Dome, where he plays town councilman James "Big Jim". His other credits include TV's NYPD Blue, The X-Files, The West Wing, and Lost and films such as Lethal Weapon 2, Total Recall, Terminator 2: Judgment Day, »
Finally, something to brighten up our January! Celebrity Big Brother is back tonight, and we can't wait to see who's about to go into the house. Host Emma Willis has promised a stellar lineup, so we're expecting big things.
We're just getting our popcorn ready, but join us from 9pm when the show starts on Channel 5 for all the action from the glamorous Borehamwood bungalow...
23:05Right, that really is it from us - thanks for joining us!
22:58Ooh, a snippet of live footage. Perez is speaking to Katie, which is presumably straining her ability to be nice. Although they are talking about her (and her horrible fat-shaming show) so maybe not...
22:56But for now, that's your lot! Celebrity Big Brother's Bit on the Side is coming up if you want even more house action, but we'll be saying bye on this blog for now. Thanks for joining us, »
8 items from 2015
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