1-20 of 29 items from 2017 « Prev | Next »
Speed is one of the great ’90s action movies, a clean post-Die Hard action flick that elevated a preposterous (but compelling) premise with Keanu Reeves’ physical showmanship and Sandra Bullock’s considerable charisma. But that almost wasn’t the case. Stephen Baldwin actually turned down the role before it went to Reeves, and Bullock’s part was almost occupied by Ellen DeGeneres. Thank god they didn’t, though. As a new video from Art Of The Scene details, the likability of Reeves and Bullock helped sell viewers on the film’s gonzo centerpiece scene, in which a bus leaps over a missing chunk of interstate.
The video goes into great detail on how director Jan De Bont pulled the scene off, filming it from five different angles to stretch a .49-second jump into 11 seconds of screen-time. That might make the actual stunt seem somewhat puny, but seeing the »
- Clayton Purdom
Padraig Cotter Jun 20, 2017
Just what's in the never-to-be-seen director's cut of Event Horizon? We take a look at what we know...
Big spoilers lie ahead for Event Horizon
See related Broken episode 3 review Broken episode 2 review Broken episode 1 review
Paul W S Anderson wouldn’t be considered one of the all-time great auteurs. He’s a director heavily inspired by the genre output of John Carpenter, James Cameron, George Miller, Walter Hill and many others, but while those directors often infuse their work with recurring themes or subtext, Anderson is often just about B-movie thrills. His work is filled with exciting action and pretty visuals, but when the characters start talking it’s usually just to motivate the next setpiece.
That said, there’s something kind of pure about how ruthlessly he strips his movies to the bone. Take Resident Evil: Retribution, for example, the fifth entry in the movie franchise. It’s got arguably the best setpieces, the most creative production design and an assortment of pretty people firing machine guns, but it’s virtually plot-free and calling the characters one note would suggest they had a note to start with. If you surrender to his cinematic sensory overloads you’ll (usually) have a good time; if you stop and question anything that happens, you probably won’t.
Even filmmakers with a less than stellar reputation usually have one movie even their distracters will give them a pass for. Michael Bay has The Rock, Jan De Bont has Speed and Paul has Event Horizon, his nightmarish sci-fi horror movie. Like most of his output the plot is relatively straight forward; an experiential spaceship returns from a black hole after disappearing seven years earlier, and a rescue team are sent to investigate.
Hell literally breaks loose.
It’s not a perfect movie and has telltale signs of re-editing - more on this in a moment – but it remains a disturbing, visceral chiller loaded with a suffocating atmosphere of dread. It’s the rare big budget horror flick that actually gets under the skin and has a quality cast to boot, including Laurence Fishburne, Sam Neill and Hello to Jason Isaacs. Despite being considered Anderson’s best work it was a bomb back in 1997, making back less than half its budget and receiving mediocre reviews.
While it didn’t bother the accounting department of Paramount on release, the cult of Event Horizon steadily grew over the years, and it started doing tidy business on DVD. Soon stories of the troubled post-production grew among the fanbase, including the near-legendary screening of a hastily edited rough cut that had executives running for the door. Due to the movie’s tight production schedule, Anderson was only left with four weeks to assemble the first cut, instead of the usual ten. This resulted in an edit that ran just over two hours, but the lack of time to finesse it resulted in slack pacing, unfinished effects sequences and a terrible sound edit.
Then there was the gore. Oh yes, the gore.
While Paramount had looked in on the production early on, they mostly left Anderson to his own devices during the shoot in England, so they weren’t expecting the high level of viscera he unleashed. This rough cut was loaded with stomach churning scenes and imagery, which apparently caused some of the test audience to faint. Needless to say, Paramount were not happy with their young director, demanding a sweeping re-edit to dial back the nastiness and the runtime be cut to around ninety minutes. While Anderson knew Event Horizon needed tightening, he felt the released version was too short and could have benefited from more character building scenes and reinserting some of the gore.
Sadly he probably won’t get the chance to release a director’s cut, since the film came out prior to the rise in special edition DVDs. The unused footage was packaged off to a Transylvanian salt mine for storage, so when he came looking for the footage it was in such poor shape it was no longer usable. Anderson himself has recently reaffirmed this, seemingly dashing any hope of the lost footage re-emerging from a black hole, like the titular ship itself.
So what hit the editing room floor? To start with, there were a few more scenes centred on the supporting characters and examining their fears. We learned Cooper’s biggest fear is losing someone he cares about, which is why he’s so upset when his chum Justin nearly kills himself. There was a backstory for DJ’s (Jason Isaacs) body scar, which was the result of childhood operations, and he would have revealed his big fear is being dissected alive; sadly, that one doesn’t work out well for him. There was also an extension of the scene where Peters hallucinates her son with horrible wounds on his legs, where she would have also seen maggots crawling all over them.
Justin featured prominently in a deleted jump scare too, where the crew are gathered around his cryo-pod after his suicide attempt. While the others discuss what happened, Sam Neill’s Dr Weir briefly hallucinated Justin turning into his late wife, who stares at him despite her notable lack of eyes. The flashback to her suicide was also bloodier and more harrowing, but it’s reduced to quick flashes in the final cut.
The special edition DVD managed to find a couple of deleted moments, including a briefing scene establishing the re-emergence of the Event Horizon. There was a disconcerting moment where Captain Miller initially explores the ship and finds a strange object floating around. He snatches it out of the air to finds it’s a tooth with bits of gum still attached.
The creepiest deletion comes from the finale, during the scene where a cryo-tank fills with blood and unleashes a torrent towards Joely Richardson’s Starck. A brief extension has Dr Weir – who has now gone full-blown demonic - crawling down the ladder like a spider, smiling at the fleeing crew members. It doesn’t add much, but the sight of a naked, blood-soaked Sam Neill is one that lingers in the mind. Neill’s body make-up in the finale was also quite elaborate and detailed, but in the final edit he’s mostly only seen in tight close-ups on his face.
The scene that haunts the nightmares of anyone who’s seen Event Horizon is the video revealing the fate of the original crew, who literally tear each other to pieces. The crew log is edited in quick cuts showcasing all manners of mutilation, with one chap pulling his own guts out through his mouth. Despite only running for twenty seconds a lot more footage was shot, which would have earned an Nc-17 without breaking a sweat.
Effects supervisor Dave Bonneywell has described his time shooting the sequence and some of the gruesome details that didn’t make it. Deleted shots include a female crew member who had her mouth held open by clamps, while a crazed guy performs amateur dentistry by drilling screws into her teeth. Another unlucky chap has his legs smashed apart by steel bars and crawls away leaving parts of them behind, while another crew member had her breasts torn off. The scene also included more cannibalism and sex, with adult performers being hired to simulate the errr, intensity of the scene. The director realised most of it probably wouldn't be used, but he filmed it regardless.
While it’s sad a director's cut likely won't happen, Event Horizon remains a solid big budget horror film with some memorable sequences, and its reputation is only likely to grow in the years ahead. Maybe hope isn’t entirely lost though. While chatting with the San Diego Reader about Resident Evil: The Final Chapter, Anderson mentioned Event Horizon’s producer Lloyd Levin recovered an old VHS tape that possibly contained his original cut. Despite this the two men haven’t been in the same place at the same time to have a look, so neither of them know what’s on the tape.
Mr Levin, if you ever read this, maybe break out the old video machine and have a quick peek. »
Image Source: Maggie Boyd It's hard not to greet David Lascher and Kelly Brown with a "Heeeeeey Duuuuude," but somehow I resist. It's been 28 years since Hey Dude debuted, and Lascher is now 45; Brown is a tad older, a fact that she reiterates a bit in our interview (her exact age isn't on the internet, and I know better than to ask her). They both look great, and while their faces haven't been onscreen much lately, they're so instantly recognizable to me that it's like seeing old friends. As a rabid Hey Dude watcher as a kid, this interview feels very special. They're in Austin for Atx, the TV festival that specializes in huge TV fandoms and nostalgia. Though the whole cast, save for Brown, reunited a few years ago at the same event, it's just these two this time, and if you watched, you know them better as Ted and Brad. »
- Shannon Vestal Robson
“I spent a lot of time reviewing the silent films for crowd scenes –the way extras move, evolve, how the space is staged and how the cameras capture it, the views used,” Nolan said earlier this year when it came to the creation of his WWII epic Dunkirk, referencing films such as Intolerance, Sunrise: A Song of Two Humans, and Greed, as well as the films of Robert Bresson.
Throughout the entire month of July, if you’re in the U.K., you are lucky enough to witness a selection of these influences in a program at BFI Southbank. Featuring all screenings in 35mm or 70mm — including a preview of Dunkirk over a week before it hits theaters — there’s classics such as Greed, Sunrise, and The Wages of Fear, as well as Alien, Speed, and even Tony Scott’s final film.
Check out Nolan’s introduction below, followed by »
- Jordan Raup
Running from 1-31 July, BFI Southbank are delighted to present a season of films which have inspired director Christopher Nolan’s new feature Dunkirk (2017), released in cinemas across the UK on Friday 21 July.
Christopher Nolan Presents has been personally curated by the award-winning director and will offer audiences unique insight into the films which influenced his hotly anticipated take on one of the key moments of WWII.
The season will include a special preview screening of Dunkirk on Thursday 13 July, which will be presented in 70mm and include an introduction from the director himself.
Christopher Nolan is a passionate advocate for the importance of seeing films projected on film, and as one of the few cinemas in the UK that still shows a vast amount of celluloid film, BFI Southbank will screen all the films in the season on 35mm or 70mm.
In 2015 Nolan appeared on stage alongside visual artist »
- Michelle Hannett
Simon Brew May 12, 2017
For the first time, Sylvester Stallone and Jackie Chan are set to share the screen together, as the pair have signed up for the new action thriller, Ex-Baghdad. The movie is being produced by Sr Media, Chan's company, and Stallone is reported to have picked up this film as a consequence of his decision to quit The Expendables movie series.
The movie centres on a Chinese-run oil refinery that’s based in Iraq. When it gets attacked, its owners call in Jackie Chan to help free its workers. He in turn needs a bit of help from a former Us Marine – that’d be Stallone – and action ensues. It's being directed by Scott Waugh, who helmed the Need For Speed film. Waugh also worked as a »
Liam Neeson has yet another action thriller on the horizon for one of his upcoming projects. According to Deadline, he will be starring in a remake of the Spanish film Retribution, which will be co-produced by Studiocanal, The Picture Company and Ombra Films with Chris Salmanpour and Andrew Baldwin providing the screenplay.
Retribution will see Neeson as “a successful Wall Street executive who discovers on his way to work that a bomb has been planted in his car by an unknown assailant. He is forced to follow a series of orders throughout the day or else the bomb will be detonated. The situation is more dire because the man’s family is in the car with him.”
The original film was released in 2015 and directed by Dani da le Torre. It was compared to the 1994 Keanu Reeves thriller Speed upon release. No director or release window has been chosen for the remake, »
- Ricky Church
He’s unraveled mind-bending conspiracies and tackled terrorism on a transatlantic flight, but for his latest StudioCanal shindig, Hollywood’s favorite action veteran Liam Neeson is headed to Wall Street.
Deadline has the scoop, revealing that the Irish actor has come aboard StudioCanal’s Retribution, the English-language remake of Spanish action-thriller El Desconocido. Filming is due to commence in the fall, and we understand Chris Salmanpour and Andrew Baldwin are the brains behind the script. No word on who will get behind the lens to direct, but Deadline is quick to point out that it won’t be Jaume Collet-Serra.
If that name rings a bell, it should; for the past six years, the Spanish filmmaker has ensured Liam Neeson’s particular set of skills extended far beyond the Taken franchise, after recruiting the 64-year-old to headline Unknown, Non-Stop and 2018’s action vehicle, The Commuter.
As for Retribution, it’ll »
- Michael Briers
Mike Fisher is opening up about family.
The NHL star penned a new blog for Derek Jeter's The Players' Tribune, getting candid about being traded from the Ottawa Senators to the Nashville Predators in 2011 and what it meant for his marriage to Carrie Underwood.
Fisher describes being "crushed" to get the news that he was being traded after more than a decade of playing for the Sens -- until he learned that the team owner had consciously chosen to send him to Nashville to be with Underwood. The couple had tied the knot less than one year earlier.
"Talk about some life-changing words," he writes. "I could have been going to 28 other cities, but I was actually going to Nashville, where I could finally be with my wife full-time."
The pair's newlywed year was spent splitting time between Ottawa and Nashville »
Carrie Underwood is all about family.
The "Church Bells" singer opened up to Et about celebrating son Isaiah's second birthday and what this means for expanding her family with husband Mike Fisher.
"We're on God's good timing or whatever you might call it," she said on Tuesday. "I'm just trying to figure out where life's going to take me next."
Underwood said that Isaiah hasn't been asking for a little brother or sister quite yet. "As a matter of fact," she added, "if a dog climbs up on my lap, I feel like he gets a little jealous of the dog!"
Et sat down with the 32-year-old superstar on Catalina Island in California, where she was in town to perform for military families aboard the Carnival Imagination cruise ship. The American Idol alum delivered a 90-minute set of her biggest hits as »
Simon Brew Apr 3, 2017
Why the writers credited on a movie are rarely the only ones who put the screenplay together....
The Wizard Of Oz, since its initial release in 1939, has richly deserved its long-cemented status as an all-time classic. A regular resident in the IMDb top 250 films of all time, and a part of many people’s DVD collection, it’s a film that I’d wager more and more people fall in love with each year. Long may that continue.
Lots of brilliant people were involved in bringing The Wizard Of Oz to the big screen. Some terrific writers, too, who came up with a quotable and cherished script. The film’s screenplay is credited to Noel Langley, »
Kirsten Howard Mar 31, 2017
From The Shining to I Origins, these are just some of the worst offenders when it comes to moving between floors...
This article contains spoilers for just about every film on its list.
I don’t know when it started exactly.
When I was very young, it was fine. I maybe even enjoyed getting on an elevator and being whisked off, but somewhere in the timeline of my life, something changed. I began to dread stepping onto one. My heart would pound, a cold sweat would creep down my neck and my breath would quicken.
“What’s wrong?” a bemused acquaintance would ask as we were about to embark.
“Oh! Nothing, really,” I’d respond as casually as I could for someone suddenly about to lose control of their bowels. “I just thought I might take the stairs. Bit of exercise, you know.”
“But it…it’s 18 flights, »
Warner Bros. takes some more red pills and wants to bring the franchise back.
Warner Bros. really wants to see how deep the rabbit hole goes. According to THR, the idea to reboot The Matrix is now being tossed around. I know what you are thinking; how could they possibly do this! Apparently, there has been some talk with screenwriter Zak Penn about writing a treatment, so this could still very much fall apart. There are even rumors that Michael B. Jordan is being considered for the lead. What was once a groundbreaking Sci-Fi film that defied expectations, will now be mined for new entries and destroyed.
What was it about The Matrix that made it so fresh? Specifically you could point towards the stunning special-effects that were imitated for years afterwards. Inspired from Hong Kong martial arts features, The Matrix used a technique known as Wire Fu in order to capture its most thrilling action sequences »
- Max Covill
“Well, there's nobody who didn't have a horrible high school experience except for, like, one guy I met once,” Joss Whedon said while sitting down with Et on the set of Buffy the Vampire Slayer in 1997.
At the time, the show was in production on its second season, with everyone -- including stars Sarah Michelle Gellar (Buffy), David Boreanaz (Angel) and Alyson Hannigan (Willow) -- returning to work on a bona fide hit for The WB. Whedon summed up his own high school experience as “constant humiliation and rejection,” an apt time period for a TV horror series. (Note: This was probably before they ever met, but I still like to believe the “one guy” he was referring to is Nathan Fillion.)
“I thought it would make a good show,” Whedon said. “I thought, I'll make a show about high school that's a horror movie just as my high school was, and that's »
John Wick was a surprise hit in 2014, bringing Keanu Reeves (The Matrix, Speed) back to his most successful roots in action films of the 90s. Starring as the titular character as a retired hitman lured back to his old lifestyle in a blood soaked, head shot filled journey of revenge, Keanu stepped back into the action star role effortlessly, and an acclaimed sequel John Wick: Chapter Two was just released.... Read More »
- Luke Ryan
In this edition of The Week in Spandex, we look at The Batman, Nightwing, The Lego Batman Movie, Wonder Woman, Justice League, Aquaman, Black Adam, Supergirl, The Flash, DC’s Legends of Tomorrow, Arrow, Black Lightning, Vixen, Powerless, Logan, X-Men: Supernova, Deadpool 2, X-Men: The New Mutants, Gambit, Fantastic Four 2, Legion, Avengers: Infinity War, Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2, Thor: Ragnarok, Black Panther, Doctor Strange 2, Spider-Man: Homecoming, Captain Marvel, Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., Inhumans, Iron Fist and more…
We’ll start things off with the DC Extended Universe this week, and this week saw another twist in the saga of The Batman with Warner Bros. officially announced that Matt Reeves (Cloverfield, Dawn of the Planet of the Apes) has signed on to replace Ben Affleck as director of the Dark Knight solo movie, after Reeves has previously broken off talks the previous week. “I have loved the Batman story since I was a child, »
- Gary Collinson
Disney’s Moana hit Digital HD this week and we have some special bonus clips to share with you.
Helmed by Clements and Musker, the directing team behind The Little Mermaid, Aladdin and The Princess and the Frog, and co-directed by Chris Williams & Don Hall (Oscar®-winning Big Hero 6 -Best Animated Feature Film in 2015), Moana” is produced by Osnat Shurer (Lifted, One Man Band), and executive produced by John Lasseter. Jared Bush (Zootopia) wrote the screenplay. Moana features original songs from a diverse and dynamic team that includes Tony®-, Emmy®- and Grammy®-winning lyricist/composer Lin-Manuel Miranda (Broadway’s Pulitzer Prize-winning and multiple Tony-winning Hamilton, Tony-winning In the Heights), Mark Mancina (Speed, Tarzan The Lion King) and Opetaia Foaʻi (founder and lead singer of the award-winning world music band Te Vaka). Mancina composed the original score.
Writing “We Know the Way”
Moana stars Auli‘i »
- ComicMix Staff
Simon Brew Feb 21, 2017
Rumours of belated sequels to Keanu Reeves movies seem to be on a bit of a rota. Bill & Ted 3 is the one that he seems most keen to make, given that he continues to maintain that the story is pretty much in place for a new film. But every now and then, some story pops up about a possible Speed 3, or The Matrix 4. More than latter than the former.
See related Alien: Covenant - its new title's meaning & other questions
Reeves was in the UK doing promotional work for John Wick: Chapter 2, and he came face to face with Yahoo UK as part of that. And the folks there quizzed him about returning to The Matrix at some point. His answer? Possibly.
“The Wachowskis [writers/directors of the trilogy] would have to be involved”, he insisted. »
With John Wick: Chapter 2 in cinemas now, it seems a good time to take a look back over Keanu Reeves’ forays into the action genre. Over the years Reeves has dipped his toes into just about every genre. He broke out of course in comedy, becoming forever identified as Ted Theodore Logan in the two Bill and Ted films. He’s done dramas, thrillers, romance and horror films. He’s even done Shakespeare (not that the world, or indeed Reeves himself needs reminding of that). However, Ted Logan aside, his most iconic work has been in the action genre.
The ageless Reeves took his first foray into the genre back in 1991 with the cult classic, Point Break. Whilst undoubtedly he was overshadowed by Patrick Swayze in the film, what was apparent was that Reeves, while still actively trying to shake »
- Amie Cranswick
February 14th, a day to celebrate love and togetherness, a day to remember the beheaded Saint Vincent, who defied the orders of Emperor Claudius II in the third century and married young lovers in secret. Or, a day to dip the strips of sacrificed goat skin in blood and bless the town’s women with fertility with a “gentle” lashing. Red hearts, thorny roses, proclamations of undying love and sacrifice—indeed, it seems Valentine's Day is full of subtle (and not so subtle) cues leading us to horror, one drop of blood at a time. These cues are likely just one reason why people always ask me, “Is it really a good idea to bring a date to a scary movie?” And the answer, much to their frustration, is “it depends.”
Sex and horror have a long history, and the connection goes beyond filmmakers banking on viewers turning out to »
- Margee Kerr
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