People's Republic of Desire

If you’re anything like me and the thought that you’ve accidentally Instagram Live-d your makeup routine induces sudden nausea, than making a living by live-streaming is probably not one of your career goals. But for the subjects of Hao Wu‘s documentary People’s Republic of Desire, live-streaming isn’t just how they make their living, it’s how they make up their sense of self. Though I am unable to get past my inhibitions, I will gladly watch other people sit on their couch and answer the questions that roll in on the screen. It’s become increasingly easier to check out of your life for a moment and check in to someone else’s. But the line between voyeurism and escapism is a thin one that is barely toed by the subjects in Wu’s documentary. Read More »

(Welcome to The Dark Knight Legacy, a series of articles that explore Christopher Nolan’s superhero masterpiece in celebration of its 10th anniversary.)

There has always been a strange appeal to Heath Ledger’s The Joker in The Dark Knight, a playful yet formidable villain capable of making you laugh uncomfortably just as easily as he could throw you off a roof and skip away without so much of a second glance. It’s a fascination propelled by the fact that he not only walks around in a wrinkled purple suit and a face caked with melted clown makeup, but he has a long jagged red scar where his smile is supposed to be. Because as absurd as his maquillage and attire are, The Joker’s scars hide something far more sinister and tell a story about him that, until The Dark Knight, we hadn’t heard before.

But The Joker doesn’t simply recall a haunting tale from his past to appease his curious victims. Rather, he captivates them with the comforting sense that his maniacal behavior is not ungrounded — right before he turns that on its head in the most brutal way.

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Nightmare Cinema - Mickey Rourke

Just as countless horror anthologies of past years have been defined by their own grab bag results, Nightmare Cinema is a mixed collection of eerie crescendos and deflating downswings. Joe Dante. Mick Garris. Alejandro Brugués. Ryûhei Kitamura. David Slade. These directors would fill the roster of any movie lover’s Murderers’ Row, and their collective worth skews towards positive reactions with an emphasis on differentiation. Their segments take ambitious swings and rarely skimp on absurdity, to a degree where the highest peaks overshadow the shallowest valleys.

Could this be thanks to Mr. “Projectionist,” Mickey Rourke’s wraparound purveyor of nasty delights whose old-school theatrical torture ushers in each story with opening night menace? Maybe not entirely, but boy does Nightmare Cinema introduce one maliciously memorable mascot. Read More »

(Welcome to The Dark Knight Legacy, a series of articles that explore Christopher Nolan’s superhero masterpiece in celebration of its 10th anniversary.)

Christian Bale’s “Batman voice” was one of the most divisive components of his iconic portrayal of the Dark Knight. Deep and raspy, like a lifelong smoker who just thrashed Marilyn Manson at karaoke, it was intended in-universe as an auditory disguise and intimidation tool – but many audience members found it silly. Regardless of your view on Bale’s bold acting choice, it not only helped define his take on the character, it made his ordinarily intense acting all the more so.

Among the most-imitated aspects of the voice is the way Batman yells. That bellow probably necessitated some kind of insurance policy specifically for Bale’s vocal cords, but it resulted in a wide array of memorable moments. In honour of The Dark Knight‘s tenth anniversary, we hereby present the complete, ranked collection of Batman bellows – 20 of them, across three films, not including anything delivered in a whispered, growled, or “ordinary” speaking voice. Grab a mug of honey lemon ginger tea, and let’s begin.

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San Diego Comic-Con 2018 most anticipated

San Diego Comic-Con International 2018 begins this week, which means it’s once again time to list our 15 most anticipated panels at the convention. In years past, television has taken over the big presentation slots as Hollywood studios like Disney have decided to forgo the trip to San Diego. This year, even fewer studios are in attendance, and even on the television side, HBO is absent. So it’s a much different year at the annual gathering of pop culture and comic geeks. What made our list of the most anticipated panels for Comic-Con 2018? Which films should be at Comic-Con this year but aren’t? Hit the jump to find out.

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Cool Posts From Around the Web:

the Equalizer 2 review

It’s fairly cold comfort that The Equalizer 2 is an improvement on its 2014 predecessor. That film’s director and star, Antoine Fuqua and Denzel Washington, have returned for this follow-up, which is largely more of the same. The first film was exceedingly dour, grim and gratuitously violent, with Washington’s Robert McCall laying waste to all sorts of faceless baddies. This time around, while the reasons why McCall has to fend off bad guys hit closer to home, much of the story is predictable and Fuqua’s unable to rein in the film to a more manageable length. All told, this manages to be a bit better simply by not being that excessive.

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Glass - Bruce Willis

Learn when we will see the new trailers for upcoming films in our continuously updated movie trailer release date calendar.

Fans have been eagerly anticipating the first trailer for M. Night Shyamalan‘s long-awaited comic book movie sequel Glass. The film is going to be the subject of a panel at Comic-Con later this week, and now a new teaser is here ahead of the full trailer on Friday. Check it out below.

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San Diego Comic Con

As we prepare for another year at San Diego Comic Con International, I wanted to take a look back at the best moments in Comic Con history. What are the coolest and most eventful things to happen over the last decade while sitting in Hall H? What makes a great Comic Con moment? Lets take a look back at the best comic-con moments of all time.

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The Last Temptation of Skywalker

(Welcome to The Movies That Made Star Wars, a series where we explore the films that inspired or help us better understand George Lucas’s iconic universe. In this edition: The Last Temptation of Christ.)

Roger Ebert famously called movies machines of empathy. He said that you can watch a film and walk in the shoes of another person and see what their plight was like and feel it for yourself. In some cases, with some audiences, that effect backfires and it’s a curious thing. Some audiences don’t want to feel those things or walk in the shoes of that particular character in that particular way. They don’t like how the character reacts to the situations before them because it’s not how they would react, or maybe they find them inconsistent with the character.

I think this is a phenomenon we’ve seen with Star Wars: The Last Jedi, thanks to its intriguing and complex treatment of Luke Skywalker. As I watch The Last Jedi and the strident backlash behind the character, I looked back into film history and found an example that I think is instructive to helping understand some of the rejections of the film. That film is Martin Scorsese’s The Last Temptation of Christ.

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Nathan Fillion Uncharted

Yesterday morning, director Allan Ungar (Gridlocked) unveiled an Uncharted fan film that gave fans something they’ve been wanting to see for ten years: a live-action Uncharted story that starred actor Nathan Fillion as treasure hunter and video game protagonist Nathan Drake. I spoke with both Fillion and Ungar on the phone about filming their adaptation, Fillion’s history with the franchise, if a sequel is in the works, and more. Read our full Nathan Fillion Uncharted interview below. Read More »