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Welcome to The Water Cooler, a weekly feature where the /Film staff is free to go off-topic and talk about everything except the movies and TV shows they normally write about. In this edition: Peter Sciretta adopts a new puppy, Ben Pearson sees Hamilton, Hoai-Tran Bui checks out a relaxing Japanese reality show, Chris Evangelista searches for spooky fun, and Jacob Hall buys some irresponsible Anchorman art.

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Stranger Things season 2 clips

Stranger Things season 2 is a week away from arriving on Netflix, and the promotional machine is going into overdrive. As fans anxiously wait to return to Hawkins, Indiana, two new promotional looks at Stranger Things 2 have arrived to tease what’s to come. If you’re worried about spoilers, fret not – as has been the tradition with previous Stranger Things promos, these are vague enough to keep you in suspense. See the Stranger Things season 2 clips below.

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no-country-anton-chigurh

It has been almost a decade since No Country for Old Men, the seismic film adaptation of Cormac McCarthy’s novel, first went into limited release in the United States. Directed by Joel and Ethan Coen, the winner of the Best Picture Oscar for 2007 is simultaneously steeped in genre tropes and highly unconventional. I still remember hearing the lady in front of me at the local indie theater jeer “That’s it? Boo!” as the closing credits rolled.

In a way, the film’s plot acts as a Trojan Horse, lowering the viewer’s defenses against all things arthouse with an exciting genre premise. A Vietnam vet hunting in the desert comes across the site of a drug deal gone bad. Absconding with a satchel full of drug money, he finds himself on the run from an eccentric hitman who uses an air-powered captive bolt gun to dispatch roadside Good Samaritans and other unwitting marks like human cattle.

If that is all there was to the film, however, we might not still be talking about it ten years later. What gives No Country for Old Men such resonance is what happens when the belly of its Trojan-Horse plot springs open. Then the film reveals itself to be a haunting, literate rumination on mortality, something richer and far more meaningful than the simple chase thriller you thought you were watching. (If you have somehow managed to not see this movie, spoilers do lie ahead.)

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pacific rim crossover

The movie franchise that started as a love letter to the kaiju monster genre may end up battling some of the OG kaiju in future crossover movies, if Pacific Rim Uprising director Steven S. DeKnight gets his wish.

The sequel to Guillermo del Toro’s affectionate homage to the mecha anime and monster movie genres that sprung out of Japan, Pacific Rim Uprising also happens to hail from the same studio that is currently spearheading Godzilla and King Kong’s cinematic MonsterVerse, Legendary Pictures. So it would not be too difficult for a crossover between the three properties to take place. Because all we’re really missing from the Godzilla and Kong films are giant robots beating them up.

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Thor Ragnarok Art

Last night, /Film’s Peter Sciretta and I attended a pre-opening night reception for Marvel Studios’ Thor: Ragnarok art showcase at Hero Complex Gallery in Los Angeles. There were more than 40 pieces of art on display, and I’ve put together a selection of 10 of my favorites for you to check out now, just in case you can’t make it over to the gallery in person.
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the Shape of Water poster

The Shape of the Water looks like nothing we’ve seen on the big screen this year, and every stunning image and poster from Guillermo del Toro‘s dark fantasy only serves to highlight its lush visuals and wistful romance.

The newest The Shape of Water poster is no exception, bringing into one-sheet glory one of the most beautiful shots of the film.

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avengers puerto rico

Real-life heroes do exist. And they look a lot like our fictional ones.

Scarlett Johansson has rallied her fellow Avengers (you might even say assembled) to participate in an event from which the proceeds would go toward relief efforts in Puerto Rico. The U.S. territory is still reeling from the destruction inflicted by Hurricane Maria, which hit Puerto Rico a month ago.

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Stranger Things Season 2 soundtrack

Want some mood music to play while you tinker with your Halloween costume or carve your last pumpkin? Never fear, the Stranger Things season 2 soundtrack is here. And on Spotify!

The brooding, synth-heavy score debuted one of its main themes earlier this month, but the soundtrack was, until now, only available for purchase digitally on Invada and Lakeshore. But it looks like that veil of exclusivity has been dropped, and every Stranger Things fan can stream the season 2 soundtrack.

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hellboy cast

While superhero movie casting news can be flooded with Marvel and DC, let’s not forget the heroes fighting crime on the fringe.

Lionsgate’s Hellboy and Sony’s Venom continue fleshing out their impressive cast lists, with the former casting three key roles, and the latter keeping their newest cast member in a haze of mystery. Both movies are expected to be released in 2018.

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Cool Posts From Around the Web:

12 Strong Trailer

Warner Bros. Pictures has a new war drama called 12: Strong: The Declassified True Story of the Horse Soldiers coming to theaters in January of 2018. Formerly known as Horse Soldiers, the film follows a team of U.S. Special Forces soldiers sent into Afghanistan almost immediately after the attacks of 9/11 on a mission to track down a network of terrorists. But in order to get the job done, they must form a surprising alliance during a difficult time, one that is more relevant than ever during today’s times of political and cultural strife.

On February 7, 2017, /Film was invited to visit the set of 12 Strong during production in Albuquerque, New Mexico. We talked to stars Chris Hemsworth, Michael Pena, Trevante Rhodes and Navid Negahban about their work on the movie, which included riding horses into battle on a small mountainside while flaming debris and gunfire surrounded them. Find out what we learned about the film and the true story at the center of it in our full 12 Strong movie set visit report below. Read More »