LISTED Film Previews – December 2011

This is it!! The final run down of the year, and what a year its been for films! We’ve had a lot of great films come past us this year, and a lot of terrible ones….. and a lot of ones that looked great but turned out to be terrible and ultimately disappointed me to the extent that I cried. Physically cried. Sad isn’t it? Please Hollywood, stop making disappointing films and just do good ones? Thanks, ‘preciate it…

Anyway, after that short distraction, I should probably mention that you can hear more film reviews, news and previews (and other things that rhyme) on May Contain Spoilers – the Film Review show that knew Soylent Green was People all along! You can “Like” our page on Facebook to get all the latest updates, links to our podcast and pictures of our competition prizes, or you can follow us on Twitter using @FilmSpoilers. And for a taste, you can follow this link to listen to the podcast of our show:

http://maycontainspoilers.jellycast.com/podcast/feed/2

But if you came here for Film Previews to get you in the Christmas mood then… well, there aren’t many Christmas movies out this month. Sorry. But instead, I packed this months previews full of some other awesome stuff instead. Just thinking of you, you know. Enjoy!

SHERLOCK HOLMES: A GAME OF SHADOWS (12A) (Dir. Guy Ritchie)

After the surprise break-out hit of the first film, Guy Ritchie brings back the crime-solving duo of Holmes (Robert Downey Jr) and Watson (Jude Law) for a second action-packed adventure. In A Game of Shadows, Holmes and Watson are pitted against their fiercest adversary and the only man that ever matched Holmes for intellect – Professor Moriarty (Jared Harris). Also returning is Rachel McAdams as Adler and a new addition of Noomi Rapace as Sim (which links to another release this month…) as the group go on a chase across Europe to stop Moriarty’s web of murders. If it’s as smart as the first, you can bet A Game of Shadows will be a massive hit across the board in time for the Christmas break. Released December 16th.

THE THING (15) (Dir. Matthijs van Heijningen Jr.)

Not actually the re-boot that everyone thought it might be, but instead a prequel to the John Carpenter 1982 original, The Thing stars Mary-Elizabeth Winstead as grad student Kate Lloyd working in an Antarctica research facility that has discovered an alien craft. This discovery not only leads to a confrontation between her and her research professor (Ulrich Thomsen), but a series of grizzly goings-on which explain all the events that lead right up to the opening of the original film. Expect big references to the original and plenty of thrills and flame-throwers. Released December 2nd.

PUSS IN BOOTS (PG) (Dir. Chris Miller)

A somewhat tenuous spin-off from the successful Shrek series, Antonio Banderas returns for the origin story of the scene-stealing feline as he teams up with mastermind Humpty Dumpty (Zach Galifianakis) and Kitty (Salma Hayek) to steal the famed Goose that lays Golden Eggs. If you’re a huge follower of the Shrek series or have kids then it might be worth going to see, but the rest of us might remain cautiously sceptical for now. Released December 9th.

MISSION: IMPOSSIBLE – GHOST PROTOCOL (12A) (Dir. Brad Bird)

Having to compete with the possibly more anticipated Girl With the Dragon Tattoo is no easy feat for Ethan Hunt’s (Tom Cruise) fourth outing in the series. Although the M:I series is starting to die out a bit, Ghost Protocol looks like it will be going in a new direction as Hunt’s group must go rogue in order to clear the name of their organisation. Also starring Jeremy Renner before he appears as Hawkeye in The Avengers next year, Ghost Protocol looks to have everything that made the previous films successful, but with a darker edge. Released December 26th.

THE GIRL WITH THE DRAGON TATTOO (15) (Dir. David Fincher)

Gradually becoming a slightly more acceptable American remake than others recently, this version stars Daniel Craig as the journalist Mikael Blomqvist who is aided by wanted computer hacker Lisbeth Salander (Rooney Mara) in his search for a woman who has been missing for 40 years. Although the original Swedish films were a massive hit this side of the Atlantic, the American remake is still sure to bring in crowds due to its much higher filming budget and big name cast/direction team, so it’s probably worth going to see even if it’s just to compare with the originals. Released December 26th.

As published in Listed Magazine and on http://www.listedmagazine.com.

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LISTED Film Previews – October ’11

Another month, and another lot of Film Previews for Listed Magazine. We’ve got a packed month this time round, with Halloween around the corner and the horror films coming out of the woodwork, so get on top of the film viewings in order to keep up! Also remember that you can listen to reviews of all of these films on May Contain Spoilers by listening in at 9pm every Thursday on The Bay Radio, or by listening to our podcasts by searching “May Contain Spoilers” on either Facebook or Jellycast. It’s a better investment than a chocolate teapot! That being said, have a read of these and leave some opinions:

REAL STEEL (12A) (Dir. Shawn Levy)

While it could have the unofficial title of “Rock-‘Em Sock-‘Em Robots: The Movie”, Real Steel looks like it might have something a bit more than the obvious to offer. Hugh Jackman is Charlie Kenton, a one-time famous boxing champ who is now a struggling promoter in a world where humans no longer box, but instead use 2000 pound robots. After Charlie discovers he has an 11 year old son who wants to know his father, they find a common goal training an unlikely champion in an old discarded droid. Sort of mid-way between Transformers and Rocky, it’s easy to see that Real Steel might have the typical father-and-son personal growth storyline, but throw giant boxing robots into the mix and you might just have something original that everyone can enjoy. Plus this looks like it could be the movie Transformers 3 should really have been! Released October 14th.

CONTAGION (12A) (Dir. Steven Soderbergh)

Doing his usual act of releasing two of his own films in one year – one being a big budget feature with big names and one smaller, lesser known one – Contagion is the bigger of the years releases from Mr. Soderbergh. Contagion focuses on an outbreak of an airborne virus that kills anyone infected within days. Panic and fear spread as quickly as the virus epidemic does, and a team from the Centre for Disease Control (including Matt Damon, Marion Cotillard and Laurence Fishburne) race to find a cure for the lethal virus. But the question is, are they able to find a cure before society tears itself apart? It may be more of a psychological thriller than an actual horror, but Contagion could be a surprise Halloween hit this year, so check it out if you want something different. Released October 21st.

THE ADVENTURES OF TINTIN: THE SECRET OF THE UNICORN (PG) (Dir. Steven Spielberg)

Bringing alive the adventures of the original comic books and boasting a big-time writing team of Stephen Moffat, Edgar Wright and Joe Cornish with a big name cast to boot, The Adventures of Tintin will see the intrepid reporter and his dog Snowy in a Robert Zemeckis-style motion capture 3D epic. When Tintin (Jamie Bell) discovers a map to a sunken treasure ship of Captain Haddock’s (Andy Serkis) ancestor, the two set out to find it before the nefarious Red Rackham (Daniel Craig) can get to it first. Definitely for those who aren’t into the Halloween-season films, Tintin could be the first of many treasure-hunting adventures for the boy reporter, so watch out for this one. Released October 26th.

PARANORMAL ACTIVITY 3 (15) (Dir. Henry Joost/Ariel Schulman)

Filling a very noticeable Saw-shaped hole in Halloween film releases this year, Paranormal Activity 3 returns with its trademark low-budget style with major chills. Although the plot is still mostly the stuff of rumour, it looks like the third film will be a direct sequel rather than the planned prequel, but will use “historical videos” from before the first one as part of the story. Whether you’re familiar with the series or not, with little in the way of horror film competition this year you can expect Paranormal Activity 3 to be the film fans will flock to for their frights – watch if you dare! Released October 21st.

As published in Listed Magazine and on http://www.listedmagazine.com – Reviews can be found on the May Contain Spoilers podcast.

LISTED Film Previews – July/August ’09 (Part One)

These are the previews for the latest issue of Listed Magazine, but I’ve put that this is only Part One because I’ve only just been informed that they need ANOTHER set of July/August ones for the next issue as well, and then a set of August/September ones for the one after that, so they overlap a bit. Fun times! Also, this is giving me something to do since a certain company which I order my CD’s and DVD’s from screwed up my last order, and I’m STILL waiting for them to fix it. As if I wasn’t already annoyed enough that they sent me the CD without the actual CD in the case! Anyway, here’s the previews:

HARRY POTTER 6: FINALLY getting its summer release, it’s the beginning of the end of the multi-million selling franchise that IS Harry Potter. Potentially being the penultimate film in the saga (the final one is planned as a two-parter), this is set to be the darkest film so far, as Harry learns more about Lord Voldemort’s deadly past and unravelling the mystery of who the Half-Blood Prince really is. Amongst all that world-saving, though, they’ll also have to deal with a greater danger – Girlfriend problems! If you’ve read the books (which you probably have, everyone else has!), the mysteries won’t be so enticing, but otherwise this looks to be a good addition to the franchise. Released July 15th

PUBLIC ENEMIES: Michael Mann’s latest directorial release stars Johnny Depp in his latest guise of notorious bank robber John Dillinger in this incredible true story of the 1930’s Depression-era crime wave. Also starring Christian Bale, this film captures the attitude of a nation plunged into Depression by the banks of which John Dillinger decided to rob. We also see how this made him a folk hero to much of the public in the process, and how he became J. Edgar Hoover’s (Billy Crudup) and the newly formed FBI’s First Public Enemy Number One. Definitely worth catching if you like your true story movies. Released July 3rd.

FINAL DESTINATION – DEATH TRIP 3D: Once again, Death is out to get these pesky teenagers that keep cheating him. Same old storyline, same series of events. BUT, this time, it’s in 3D. Could this mean it’s going to be any better than the previous ones? Let me phrase it this way – it’s still people getting decapitated, exploded, punctured in various manners, disembowelled and basically being splattered all over the walls, except this time it’s coming RIGHT at you off the screen! Enough said! Released August 28th.

THE TIME TRAVELER’S WIFE: Eric Bana stars in the title role of this adaptation of the highly popular book about a librarian from Chicago who is in possession of a gene that allows him to involuntarily time travel. This, however, begins to cause problems for his love affair with the beautiful artist Clare in this romantic drama that’s ultimately about the test of love and patience, capturing the two in a romantic trap. Fans of the book should definitely be front of the ticket line for this! Released August 14th.

INGLOURIOUS BASTERDS: The latest offering from writer/director Quentin Tarantino sees him broadening his material matter once more with a historical World War II thriller. Brad Pitt leads the cast as Jewish-American Lt. Aldo Raine, leader of a Nazi-hating group of violent army brats called “The Basterds”, who are chosen to spread fear through the opposing ranks by scalping and brutally killing Nazis. This is new ground being broken for Tarantino, and it looks like it may well pay off for him and if you’re a fan of his previous work, you’ll know you’re in for a gruesome thrill ride. Released August 21st.

As Published in Listed Magazine Issue 19 and on www.listedmagazine.com

LISTED Film Previews – January/February ’09

So, I’ve finally been given the Go-ahead by Listed Magazine to post up a selection of the articles and Film Previews that have been printed and put on their website! Here are the previews for films that have been released in January and February of this year:

BOLT: Canine star of Underdog-style superhero TV series, Bolt believes he really doeshave superpowers, and that everything going on is real. So when the storyline for the TV show sees his cohort get kidnapped, he goes on a crusade to get her back, not realising its all make-believe! Hilarious? Coming from Disney/Pixar Studios and boasting a cast including John Travolta and teeny pop-sensation Miley Cyrus in its ranks, you really should hope so! Any people needing to satisfy their “inner child” would do well to catch this, but for those too “mature”, this may be too Shrek-like for you!

SLUMDOG MILLIONAIRE: Danny “28 Days Later” Boyle brings us the story of orphan Jamal Malik, who grew up in the slums of Mumbai, only to appear on the Hindi version of “Who Wants to Be a Millionaire?” at the age of 18, not to win the prize money but instead to prove his love for his friend and fan of the show Latika. When he’s arrested during a break on suspicion of cheating for knowing so much, he retells the story of his life, showing that each chapter taught him the answer to the shows “impossible” quizzes.

FROST/NIXON: Director Ron Howard brings us this political insight into the post-Watergate interviews held between British talk-show host David Frost and former president Richard Nixon. This looks to have very eye-opening retellings of the events, and those studying or have interests in politics (or even the US elections!) should add this to their “must-see” list!

THE SECRET OF MOONACRE:With a fairly confusing and frankly uninteresting plotline that sees Dakota Blue Richards (The Golden Compass) starring as the main role (without an audition!) of a luxurious London-based girl whose father dies. This means she has to move to a manor house with an uncle she never knew she had, only to discover she is the last Moon Princess who has to stop a feud with another, more sinister family before the 5000thmoon rises and Moonacre gets lost to the sea forever. Needless to say, expect plot-holes!

FRIDAY THE 13TH: Horror film remakes are a very touchy subject sometimes, and horror films in general aren’t for everyone. Not me though! Remaking what was arguably one of THE greatest horror films ever is the director of the 2003 remake of Texas Chainsaw MassacreMarcus Nispel (also, a fine remake!). Early trailers for this film see it staying very true to the original, and “Jason” Vorhees being a more brutal predator of a killer than ever! My advice? Buy LARGE popcorns – they’re easier to hide behind! Fans of horrors and the originals unite – and hold on tight to the edge of that seat!

As published in Listed Magazine Issue 15 – www.listedmagazine.com

The Best Is Yet To Come!

Ok, I know its been a bit of a while since I put anything up here (even though my original plan was to put up about one post a week on here after I’d made this site, and it turns out I want to do a lot more than that!), I’ve decided to give you people that generously take some time out of your day to read this a little glimpse of the future. No, I’m not really Professor X (or am I…?), but I would like to tell you about some stuff that’s coming up soon, or later this year, that I’m looking forward to which will be going up here.

Firstly, some music demos will hopefully be posted here soon, and they’ll be easy to spot as I’m going to put them all in a page of their own! There may only be one to start with, and that’s providing that it is any good and I decide to actually put it up, and there wont be any of my guitar on there because I don’t actually know enough to play any of the songs I’ve been using to practise my vocals with! Needless to say, there will eventually be something here to drape your ears in sound with. They would be up sooner, but my vocal lesson this week had to be put aside since my tutor had a prior engagement that needed his attention, so we’re not going to be recording anything this week.

There are a few albums on the horizon that I may well be tempted by, should I find I have the money and the opportunity to buy them. Firstly, In Case Of Fire‘s debut album Align The Planets is due for release on May 11th, but its changed a lot since it’s been announced. I’ve only heard the single This Time We Stand so far, but if that’s the sound they have on this entire album, its definitely worth a listen! Madina Lake have been back in the studio recently, and have produced their second album titled Attics To Eden. If it’s anything like their sound from their debut album From Them, Through Us, To You then again, it will be worth listening to. However, Madina Lake have said that they’ve gone for a slightly different sound (hopefully one more like their cover of Caught Somewhere In Time on the Kerrang! Maiden Heaven Tribute CD – very much a heavier, bassier sound with a splash of keys to break that apart and let the melodies flow a lot more easily), and some more progressive concepts which are obvious for their somewhat “odd” new artwork by artist Vic Lee a.k.a. Lynden St Victor. If you’ve had the pleasure of seeing the artwork for Attics To Eden, you’ll probably have seen the conceptual threads that are in it – the shape of the robot implying that time is cyclical, the dichotomy of the female character… it’s all sounds like a Sci-Fi film really, but if that’s just the album art then that speaks a lot for their new direction. Attics To Eden is due for release April 27th.

Also, Paramore (*cheers*) are heading back into the studio very soon (according to their online blog) and plan to release the follow-up to 2007’s Riot! album later this year towards the end of the Summer period, so that’s definitely something I’ll be anxiously looking forward to! 30 Seconds To Mars are also in the process of recording and releasing a new album, after the success of their second album A Beatuiful Lie. Although no release date has been confirmed by the band, Jared Leto has revealed that the working title for it is rather ominously called This Is War, so keep a look ouot for that later this year! In other news, Blink-182 have announced that they will be reforming, and hopefully touring the UK eventually. This means that I’ll FINALLY be able to see the band that I was so into when I was 13-16 in a live venue!

I’ve also been told by Listed Magazine that I can put the articles I’ve written for them up on this site, as long as I credit them in the appropriate way – this means that there will be some proper Film and Music articles heading onto here very soon as well!

On that note, there are some films due for release that I’ll probably be reviewing and posting here, including X-Men Origins: Wolverine and Watchmen, and a one night only screening of My Name Is Bruce at the cinema I work at! Also, a friend of mine is in a band and they’re putting on a big show on the 6th March at a local venue called The Talking Heads. They’re called Today’s Eden, and I’ll be giving them a write up here around the time of their show, so if you’re interested in unsigned bands then keep watching for that!

Basically, a lot of stuff is going to be put up here soon, so keep on checking! I know I promised this a while ago, but I REALLY mean it this time… promise!

Until the Next Post! -Drew-