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Digital Spy was fortunate enough to score a sizeable amount of time in the company of acclaimed filmmaker Nicolas Winding Refn in support of the DVD release of Only God Forgives. A thematically audacious and visually stunning movie, this twisted tale of Ryan Gosling's taciturn drugs dealer becoming embroiled with a vengeance-fuelled policeman called Chang has polarised audiences. But what is it really about? We probed its maker, before delving further into his career to explore the likes of Pusher and Bronson. As for the future, Bond, Beckham and Barbarella are all on the agenda...
Since its release, Only God Forgives has inspired many different interpretations. What's the weirdest one you've encountered so far?
"My favourite one is when a German woman at Cannes came up to me and said, 'I think this movie takes place in the vagina, yes?' I was like, 'Yeah, that's pretty spot on, »
What seemed to exit theatres just as quickly as it headed into them was that of Robert Rodriguez's grindhouse styled action sequel 'Machete Kills'. So after an underwhelming box office take the follow-up will now attempt to enter homes as it gets released onto Blu-ray, DVD, Digital HD with UltraViolet and On Demand on 21 January 2014. The Blu-ray/DVD release will feature deleted and extended scenes as well as a 'Making of' feature. The release comes courtesy of Universal Studios Home Entertainment and the action filled sequel stars Danny Trejo ('Bad Ass'), Sofia Vergara ('Modern Family'), Lady Gaga, Amber Heard ('Drive Angry'), Michelle Rodriguez ('Resident Evil: Retribution'), Jessica Alba ('The Eye'), Alexa Vega ('Spy Kids'), Demian Bichir, Charlie Sheen and Mel Gibson. »
Machete Kills didn’t exactly triumph at the box office. The film opened at #4 and was quickly beaten into submission by Gravity and roughly a dozen other films, eventually admitting defeat after recouping less than three quarters of its budget. A month after its release and the film has all but vanished from theaters. Conventional logic states that this is the end for dear old Machete (although for all we know, there may be endless direct-to-dvd sequels in his future). So as we marvel at how quickly the fake-Mexploitation-grindhouse craze has fizzled and died, take a look at what may be the single most enjoyable aspect of Machete Kills: the fake threequel trailer that ran before it. Titled Machete Kills Again… in Space, it’s exactly what you think it is (and if you were one of the few to actually see Machete Kills in theaters, it’s exactly what you’ve seen already). Danny Trejo scowling »
- Adam Bellotto
Drew Barrymore shared sweet Pda with her husband, Will Kopelman, as they hit the red carpet for the Baby2Baby Gala in La on Saturday night. In her first public appearance since confirming her second pregnancy, Drew was all smiles while showing off her growing baby bump in a Tory Burch dress - it's safe to say that she's already glowing! Last week, it was announced that Drew and Will were expecting their second child together - the two are already parents to 1-year-old Olive. The actress recently spoke about her pregnancy in an interview, revealing that she and Will "wanted so bad for Olive to have a sibling" and that all she wants to eat at the moment is Chinese food. More hot Hollywood couples joined Drew and Will at the soiree for Baby2Baby, which aims to supply La families in need with gear and clothing for their young children. »
- Brittney Stephens
When did being an action hero become synonymous with winter fuel entitlement and access to cheaper public transport? It seems that you have to be in your twilight years to save the world these days, unless – by some stroke of luck – you’re in possession of superpowers. So even though I’ve been enjoying the new influx of cheesy action that have been brought on by the success of The Expendables, of course, at a certain point you need to look objectively at the genre that almost seems to revel in its casual self-mockery.
Action films aren’t supposed to be serious, but there is supposed to be some sort of threat to overcome, some kind of tension to sustain the narrative. Now all we get are tired “I’m too old for this” gags thrown at us over and over again, before our intrepid heroes shuffle off to gun »
- Johno Patterson
Is it a bird? Is it a plane? No, it's a superhero movie... and they've taken over Hollywood with their superpowers and Spandex costumes. The Guardian and Observer's critics pick the 10 best
• Top 10 action movies
• Top 10 crime movies
• Top 10 arthouse movies
• Top 10 family movies
• Top 10 war movies
• Top 10 teen movies
• More Guardian and Observer critics' top 10s
10. Iron Man 3
Shane Black's jagged-edged debut in the Marvel hotseat might easily have been a by-the-numbers "threequel", especially with star Robert Downey Jr out of contract and The Avengers' stupendous box office success a year earlier. Instead, the Kiss Kiss Bang Bang director delivered the series' best instalment so far via a perfectly-pitched twist that comes about as close as the superhero genre will ever get to its very own Crying Game moment.
Ben Kingsley's nefarious Mandarin is a preposterous, shadowy Bin Laden clone with a big bushy beard »
Following the premiere of The Green Inferno in September, Open Road Films acquired the movie for a Us theatrical release. We don’t have a trailer yet, but we do have the very first clip from the movie.
“How far would you go for a cause you believe in? In horror master Eli Roth’s terrifying new film, a group of college students take their humanitarian protest from New York to the Amazon jungle, only to get kidnapped by the native tribe they came to save: a tribe that still practices the ancient rite of cannibalism, and has a healthy appetite for intruders.”
The Green Inferno was directed by Eli Roth and written by Eli Roth & Guillermo Amoedo. The main cast includes Daryl Sabara (Spy Kids), Kirby Bliss Blanton (Project X), Lorenza Izzo (Aftershock), Ariel Levy (Aftershock), Aaron Burns, Magda Apanowicz (Caprica), and Sky Ferreira.
Review Sequel Announced »
- Jonathan James
Entertainment Geekly is a weekly column that examines contemporary pop culture through a geek lens and simultaneously examines contemporary geek culture through a pop lens. So many lenses!
In last week’s column, I offered a few ideas for improving Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., the just-okay non-superhero Marvel spinoff with tantalizingly limitless potential. Said ideas ran the gamut from reasonable (Solve the Coulson mystery) to outlandish (Make everyone evil) to the extremely unlikely (bring in the Black Knight)! In response, readers posted their own exciting Shield-reboot ideas. Let’s take a look at some of the best.
Alistaircrane: Re-focus »
- Darren Franich
"The Tomorrow People" is the kind of show that could legitimately recruit directly from the agencies of "Spy Kids." So it shouldn't be a surprise that the CW show has cast Alexa Vega -- best known for her role of Carmen Cortez in the "Spy Kids" films -- to play an Ultra rival for Stephen (Robbie Amell).
Vega's character is Hillary Cole, a new recruit brought into Ultra. She immediately becomes a rival for Stephen Jameson in training to be a supernatural agent. The catch is that Ultra only wants one of its new agents to make it to the next stage of training. Whoever loses will get stripped of his or her powers.
"The Tomorrow People" airs Wednesdays at 9 p.m. on The CW. »
Escape Plan is the first time Arnold Schwarzenegger and Sylvester Stallone have headlined a movie together. Asterisk 1: Schwarzenegger was one of Stallone’s weekend-cameo all-stars in the first two Expendables films. Asterisk 2: The two men already headlined a movie together. That movie was America, and the running time was the 1980s. The longtime rivals-turned-business partners-turned-surgery buddies rode astride the action genre’s glory days. They were the defining Hollywood duo, more popular — and more easily reduced to cliché — than contemporaries like Bruce Willis or Kurt Russell or Mel Gibson.
And yet, the question of who was the better »
- Darren Franich
A whole mess of factors goes into what projects a director takes on. A young up-and-comer might be happy just to get his first directing credit, regardless of what it might actually be about. A director who's been around the block might pick up a project way outside of their wheelhouse just for the experience. And the promise of a couple bucks doesn't hurt, either.
In other words, sometimes you just can't pin a filmmaker down. Here are some rather odd and unexpected director-movie pairings.
Between "12 Angry Men," "Network," "Dog Day Afternoon" and "Serpico," it's fair to call the late Sidney Lumet an all-time great. But considering most of Lumet's career was dedicated to crime and drama, "The Wiz," a musical "The Wizard of Oz" adaptation set in Harlem (and, later, Oz), is a definite oddball in his canon. Starring such powerhouses of African-American culture as Michael Jackson, »
- Adam D'Arpino
Robert Rodriguez is a paradox. He makes extremely violent action movies and he makes extremely saccharine kids’ movies. He doesn’t want to work in the studio system, but you could argue that his output is incredibly studio-friendly: Sequels, spin-offs, comic book adaptations. Over the last decade, Rodriguez has created an infrastructure around himself that would theoretically allow him to make any movie he wants — and in 2011, he really wanted to make Spy Kids 4.
Rodriguez was a pioneer in HD filmmaking and digital backlots and 3-D technology, which also makes him a pioneer in Things Film Lovers Despise. He is »
- Darren Franich
Continued from Part One, here's the rest of my interview with Austin filmmaker Robert Rodriguez and Machete Kills star Danny Trejo, pictured above at the Fantastic Fest red carpet with actress Alexa Vega.
Slackerwood: It seems like you enjoy revisiting your characters in multiple movies -- why do you think you want to keep bringing the characters back?
Danny Trejo: Well, they're good actors.
Robert Rodriguez: I was very much inspired by George Lucas. He wanted to do a Flash Gordon movie, but couldn't get the rights, so he wrote his version instead, which is called Star Wars. I thought, that's such a cool thing. Instead of going and doing a James Bond movie, go and make your own James Bond series, and put things in it that you love -- base it on my family, call it Spy Kids. Or do a guitar-player series of movies.
You know, »
- Jette Kernion
If you haven't seen Machete Kills yet (Don's review), the best way to see it is with a large and enthusiastic audience -- or even a small group of lively friends. It's such silly fun that audience reactions are a must. Robert Rodriguez shot the sequel to Machete in the Austin area, whether you recognize it or not, with a cast that includes Mel Gibson, Sofia Vergara, Antonio Banderas, Charlie Sheen and Lady Gaga. It even includes a fake trailer for a third Machete film ... set in outer space.
I sat down with Rodriguez and Trejo shortly before the movie opened Fantastic Fest this year -- the photo of Rodriguez, Alexa Vega and Trejo above is from its premiere that evening. Here's what they »
- Jette Kernion
Robert Rodriguez is a maverick filmmaker in every sense of the word. But thanks to his infatuation with lowbrow thrills, he often goes without the credit he deserves. With the release of Machete Kills now in the rearview mirror with less-than-stellar box office, the time has come to inventory the many reasons why Rodriguez deserves more respect than he gets. He makes great kids' films Rodriguez's violent B movies were made with the ornery child inside all of us firmly in mind. But he also makes films for actual children, some of which are cool enough to please genre fans of any age. Spy Kids 2, with its fun cast and loving homages to Ray Harryhausen, is particularly wonderful for those willing to give it a chance. He totally resists sentiment...
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It just figures. Up front... most of us here at Dread Central were not fans of the original Machete. Yet, its sequel, Machete Kills, made huge strides in getting things right, and of course nobody went to see it. In fact, it had an historically bad opening.
According to Box Office Mojo, Machete Kills opened to $3.8M, which is the 8th worst opening in history for a movie in over 2,500 theaters. It joins flicks like Firehouse Dog and Rainn Wilson's The Rocker on the list of shame. Aye carumba! Machete don't draw. This poor showing without question puts the future of the franchise in trouble unless it heads direct to video with little to no star power.
Read our Machete Kills review!
- Uncle Creepy
Now that it's landed in theatres we have to assume the asset express will be slowing down somewhat. 'Machete Kills' hit theatres on Friday and to coincide Empire Online sneaked in this new grindhouse styled UK one-sheet right under the wire featuring star Danny Trejo as the legendary Machete Cortez. Trejo stars alongside an eye-popping line-up that includes Alexa Vega ('Spy Kids'), Sofia Vergara ('Modern Family'), Lady Gaga, Amber Heard ('Drive Angry'), Michelle Rodriguez ('Resident Evil: Retribution'), Jessica Alba ('The Eye'), Demian Bichir, Charlie Sheen and Mel Gibson. The Robert Rodriguez helmed sequel is in theatres now! »
Sequels are fairly common these days, yet Machete Kills still seems unnecessary. Like the original film, it is an experimentation in the absurd, but even more so.
The original Machete film was based on a fake trailer that Robert Rodriguez had directed for the Grindhouse/Terror Planet double feature. Therefore, Rodriguez had only a few shots and a general premise with which to base his feature film on. The resulting product had a story that was able to connect the dots, but the end product as a whole wasn’t really as satisfying as its parts. For the sequel, Rodriguez doesn’t have a trailer or anything else to base his film on. Therefore, in order to heed to tradition and give his new film at least some purpose for existing, Rodriguez makes another trailer. This one is for the next Machete film. That film is supposed to take place after this one, »
- email@example.com (G.S. Perno)
The second outing for Danny Trejo's blade-wielding action hero is even worse than the first
Reading on a mobile? Click here to watch trailer
As if the nostalgic indulgence of the original Rodriguez/Tarantino Grindhouse project wasn't wearing enough, we now have this sequel to a movie that was itself a spinoff from a spoof trailer – a three-minute gag stretched out into two full-length feature films, with a third ("Machete Kills Again – In Space") most likely in the offing. Danny Trejo contorts his splendidly leathery face into that all-but-immobile sneer that has been his trademark since Spy Kids as the eponymous blade-wielding former federale, here enlisted to bring down a supercrook (Demián Bichir) whose heart has been wired to a nuclear bomb.
The usual "ironic" elements are all present and correct: rubbery limb-lopping with added digital splashes (fun); bordellos full of shotgun-brassiered hookers and a script packed with schoolboy »
- Mark Kermode
Spy Kids fans are in for a big surprise - former child star Alexa Vega isn't a little girl anymore! The 25-year-old, who's best known for playing Carmen Cortez in the family adventure series, says her latest role in Machete Kills is anything but wholesome. "It's edgy, it's kickass," the newly engaged star tells People of her provocative new role in the film, out Oct. 11. "I think every girl wants to be a badass.""I'm excited for people to see me in a new light without going over the top," she adds, noting that she's spent years slowly trying to shed her child-star image. »
- Lee Hernandez
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