Murder on the Orient Express casting / Daisy Ridley as Rey in Star Wars The Force Awakens

Director Kenneth Branagh seemed to have his work cut out for him when it came to casting his Murder on the Orient Express remake. Sidney Lumet’s 1974 version was a star-studded affair, featuring Albert Finney, Lauren Bacall, Ingrid Bergman, Jacqueline Bisset, Sean Connery, Anthony Perkins, and Vanessa Redgrave. Could any new cast in 2016 possibly compare?

Well, we won’t know for sure until the new film opens in theaters, but it does seem to be off to a great start in terms of star power. Branagh himself is leading the Agatha Christie adaptation as detective Hercule Poirot, and yesterday we learned Johnny Depp and Michelle Pfeiffer had also hopped on board. Today, a new report adds several more big names to the passenger list including Daisy RidleyJudi DenchMichael Peña, and Hamilton star Leslie Odom Jr. Find out who’s playing whom below. Read More »

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Inferno

With next month’s Inferno, Ron Howard and Tom Hanks will have adapted three of the four existing novels in Dan Brown‘s Robert Langdon series, which hit peak popularity 2003’s The Da Vinci Code. But lest you worry they’ll run out of material, Brown has another Robert Langdon book is on the way. Origin, his fifth novel about Harvard symbologist Langdon, will hit shelves in fall 2017.  Read More »

Alfred Hitchcock Anthology TV Series in the Works

Alfred Hitchcock

Why settle for remaking one movie by Alfred Hitchcock when you can borrow from the Master of Suspense for seasons upon end? Universal Cable Productions has just struck a deal with the Hitchcock estate to develop Welcome to Hitchcock, an anthology series that will be “in the spirit of the classic Hitchcock style and legacy.”  Read More »

Mr. Robot Python Part 1 Recap

“You are standing in an open field west of a white house, with a boarded front door. There is a small mailbox here.”

So begins one of the most important, influential video games ever made. Infocom’s Zork was birthed in an MIT lab in the late 1970s. It was released to the public as a series of text-based adventure games in the early ’80s, and went on to shape much of the structure present in modern adventure and exploration games. Its enigmatic opening remains, perhaps, the greatest beginning to a video game ever made. Poor grammar aside, Zork’s opening lines invite the player into a new universe built almost entirely by the player’s own imagination. Where modern games max out on polygons and rendering detail and atmospheric effects to present a cinematic vision for gamers, Zork stands as a testament to the power of simple text on a screen, as well as to the underlying structures that make games work. Give the play a place to explore; set boundaries; create obstacles; leverage frustration. As you progress and fail and progress some more in search of a path to the end, the biggest question the game leave you with is, “what am I not seeing?”

It’s fitting that Elliot asks himself the same thing near the end of “Python Part 1,” the penultimate episode of Mr. Robot’s similarly enigmatic, confounding, sometimes frustrating second season. Elliot—and not just Elliot—is searching through a dark, unknowable space, the boundaries of which keep expanding and expanding as the search carries on. At some point there might be an end, or an escape, or even just a door to some better place of the imagination. Our “hero” is caught in the second stages of an adventure. He’s left the field, entered the house, found the door to a mysterious cellar, venture down and discovered the Great Underground Empire.

But what are we not seeing?  Read More »

NOCTURNAL ANIMALS review

There’s a lot to admire about Nocturnal Animals, the second feature from Tom Ford. The narrative is actually two narratives, beautifully braided together by Ford and brought to life by Amy Adams and Jake Gyllenhaal. It’s pretentious pulp, in a good way — engaging to watch and pretty to behold. But Nocturnal Animals seems to be aiming for profundity, and there it falls short. It’s trying to say something, but what isn’t exactly clear.  Read More »

Disney Almost Created A ‘Myst’ Theme Park

myst theme park

If you played computer games in the 1990’s, then you probably remember Myst, the best-selling adventure puzzle game which took players around a magical island filled with mysterious secrets. Myst was responsible for accelerating the sales of CD-ROM drives and remained the bestselling PC game throughout the 1990s until The Sims exceeded its sales in 2002.

There has been this long-running rumor that Walt Disney Imagineering once considered turning Disney World’s Discovery Island into a Myst theme park. Myst creators, brothers Robyn and Rand Miller, have now confirmed they did work with Disney on a Myst attraction.

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2016 fall movie preview

This 2016 fall movie preview was written by Jacob Hall and Jack Giroux.

The summer is over and the days are getting shorter and the weather is getting milder and (fingers crossed) the movies are going to start getting better. The next four months offer an embarrassment of cinematic riches, with new films from Martin Scorsese, Damien Chazelle, Tim Burton, Gareth Edwards, Paul Verhoeven, Mel Gibson, Robert Zemeckis, Park Chan-Wook, Terrence Malick, J.A. Bayona, Jeff Nichols, Ang Lee, Denis Villeneuve, Kenneth Lonergan, and other filmmakers of note waiting in the wings.

We’ve narrowed down the list of must-see movies to 32 titles and have ranked them from “We really want to see this!” to “We will push you out of the way at a sprint to see this!”

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2016 summer movie recap

The summer movie season is over and you know what that means – it’s time to hand out pointless imaginary awards to the best, worst, and weirdest films of the past four months!

Welcome to the 2016 Summer Blockbuster Awards, which is like the Oscars if the Oscars only covered a specific release window, were decided by one person, and were also really dumb. Here’s how this works: I have created 24 categories, from “Best Performance” to “Movie Most in Need of a Hug” and have awarded one winner and one runner-up. At the name of these awards imply, the focus here is on wide releases that arrived between May and August of this year. So while you really should go out of your way to see indie gems like Swiss Army Man and Don’t Think Twice, they won’t be the focus here. Got it? Good. Let’s just dive right in.

Be warned there are spoilers ahead for some of this summer’s films.

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‘Stranger Things’ Officially Renewed for Season 2

Stranger Things season 2 renewal

To date, one of the strangest things about Stranger Things has been the lack of a renewal. Netflix has been known to renew just about everything, sometimes even before the season one premiere, and Stranger Things is believed to be one of the most-watched Netflix original series of all time. It seemed just plain odd that, a full month after Stranger Things‘ debut, the service hadn’t gotten around to re-upping it.

Well, today they finally have. Netflix has officially announced that Stranger Things season 2 will be coming in 2017, and they’ve even shared the first little teaser trailer. Get all the Stranger Things season 2 details below.  Read More »