Posted on Friday, February 15th, 2019 by Fred Topel
DC Universe’s second live-action show, Doom Patrol, arrives today. This superhero team consists of Robotman (Brendan Fraser), Negative Man (Matt Bomer), Elasti-Girl (April Bowlby), Cyborg (Joivan Wade) and Crazy Jane (Diane Guerrero) and a farting donkey. So it’s not the Justice League. It’s not even the Suicide Squad.
During a Television Critics Assoiation panel for Doom Patrol, series creator Jeremy Carver confirmed appearances by Danny the Street, Celsius and other characters from the Grant Morrison run Doom Patrol. Flashbacks reveal more of the characters’ backstories, like how Larry Trainor was a closeted pilot before a crash made him Negative Man and Cliff Steele was an adulterous race car driver before Chief (Timothy Dalton) put his brain inside a robot.
Carver spoke with /Film after the TCA panel further about the cinematic look of the show, overlapping Cyborg characters, and more.
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How can every episode of this season’s Star Trek: Discovery be the best episode ever? Just last week, I thought “An Obol for Charon” was at the top of the pack. But somehow, this week’s episode, “Saints of Imperfection,” is just as amazing, if not better, thanks to the writers’ amazing ability to rewrite the wrongs that occurred in the first season.
Let’s get into what went down this week.
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You seldom see a review of The Dragon Prince that doesn’t refer to its spiritual predecessor Avatar: The Last Airbender. You might recognize the name of Aaron Ehasz, the head writer of Avatar, as one of the creators of The Dragon Prince. Even Jack De Sena, the voice of our boomerang-wielding Sokka, leads as Prince Callum.
Many of the hallmarks between these two shows overlap. These two children’s animated shows are worlds apart yet close in resemblance. Let’s dive into the shared motifs of The Dragon Prince and Avatar: The Last Airbender and why they’re proof that you should watch the Netflix fantasy series, whose second season arrived today.
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As we head into the final stretch of awards season, /Film had the opportunity to speak with a number of cinematographers about their craft. These include Linus Sandgren of First Man, Lukasz Zal of Cold War, John Mathieson of Mary Queen of Scots, Michael Grady of On the Basis of Sex, and C. Kim Miles of Welcome to Marwen.
Although not all of these artists were nominated for an Oscar for their work this year, this series of interviews could not be more timely. With this year’s ceremony removing the cinematography award from the live broadcast (and airing the acceptance speeches later in the show), it is more important than ever to take notice of the craft that goes into lighting and shooting a movie.
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Alita: Battle Angel isn’t a movie set in the future that’s all about doom and gloom. Director Robert Rodriguez‘s grand spectacle tells a story with genuine warmth and kindness, thanks in no small part to the presence of actor Christoph Waltz. Playing Dr. Dyson Ido, who discovers Alita in a heap of trash and jolts her back to life, Waltz helps make Rodriguez’s adaptation of Yukito Kishiro‘s manga series more heartfelt than a typical studio movie (which Alita: Battle Angel most certainly is not).
Waltz plays a paternal role and watches Alita’s self-discovery unfold like the audience does. Another part of Waltz’s role and job: assisting in explaining the world, Alita, and the tech. The actor does plenty of heavy lifting for the story, but like Cameron’s handle for world building, Waltz does it all with a natural ease. Plus, if there’s one actor you’re going to immediately buy as a brilliant scientist and doctor, it’s the Inglorious Basterds star, who recently told us about his experience with Rodriguez, cinematographer Bill Pope (The Matrix), and producer James Cameron during a brief phone interview.
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34-year-old Ludwig Göransson made Grammy history this past weekend, becoming the first person to win both best score and song of the year with projects that have nothing to do with each other. A longtime collaborator of Donald Glover/Childish Gambino, Göransson co-wrote and produced the explosive track “This is America” and composed the score for Ryan Coogler’s Black Panther, the ninth highest-grossing movie in history and a current Best Picture contender at the Oscars.
Göransson’s Black Panther score is nominated for an Oscar as well, and I jumped on the phone with him this week to talk about crafting the music of Wakanda, his work on the upcoming Disney+ Star Wars TV show The Mandalorian, and much more. Read More »
Isn’t It Romantic? is in theaters right now. The story follows a New York architect named Natalie (Rebel Wilson) who works hard to get noticed at her job. But more often than not gets relegated to the sidelines, sent out for coffee instead of presenting her big ideas for her firm’s clients. Life takes an odd turn when Natalie gets knocked unconscious and wakes up in her own romantic comedy. It’s both an unsettling nightmare and a hilarious dream.
Director Todd Strauss-Schulson (A Very Harold & Kumar Christmas, The Final Girls) has created an vibrant romantic comedy world that emulates all of the genre’s tropes. But it’s also a love letter to romcoms, packed with a big beating heart that it wears on its sleeve. In order to bring this cinematic, romantic world to life, the filmmaker immersed himself in dozens of romcoms in the span of two weeks. In fact, he watched every romantic comedy made between 1988 and 2007, and it shows.
We sat down for an interview with Todd Strauss-Schulson where he talked about the extensive preparation for the movie that no one asked him to do. Plus, he discussed attempting to decode the genome of romantic comedies, making a meta comedy without feeling like a spoof, and bringing to life a scene that he’s dreamed about since he was 10 years old. Read More »
(Welcome to Now Stream This, a column dedicated to the best movies streaming on Netflix, Amazon, Hulu, and every other streaming service out there.)
Greetings, movie watchers. It’s time for another edition of Now Stream This, where I attempt to bring you an eclectic mix of movies streaming right this very moment. This week, we have one of Paul Thomas Anderson’s best films; a fantastic horror documentary; a Steven Soderbergh flick shot on an iPhone; a horror classic; a documentary that will make you cry; a cinematic TV series; a haunted baseball field; a dark satire of the Reagan Era; killer A.I.; and an overlooked crime drama. These are the best movies streaming right now. Let’s get streaming!
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Cool Posts From Around the Web:
Rapturous admissions of love – with all their rose-colored dressings and happiest endings – are not strictly reserved for the purest hearts. Even those most wicked, villainous souls can experience companionship in any form required (human, demigod, demonic ruler, etc). Society doesn’t normally classify these “nightmare” stories as “romantic,” but cinema operates to argue otherwise. Love stories come in all moods, genres, and methods of display – or, at the very least, double as a facade for even more unspeakable damnation than previously believed.
With St. Valentine’s influence in the February air, I thought it might be fun to ruin the mood once again with something dark and twisted. An ode to anyone who’d steal Cupid’s bow as a way of extending their ongoing murder spree. To honor those we dub our partners in crime, I’ve compiled a list of *literal* partners in crime who’ve tallied relationship goals and body counts in tandem. The most dangerous cinematic couples that prove “those who slay together, stay together” – in a matter of words. The good, the bad, and the ugly.
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Alita: Battle Angel has been a long time coming. Based on Yukito Kishiro‘s manga series Battle Angel Alita, the big and intimate Robert Rodriguez film was once going to be directed by producer James Cameron, who ended up choosing Avatar over the property. Cameron ultimately handed directorial duties over to Rodriguez, who helped whip Cameron’s epic script into a manageable length.
Even with a different director at the helm, producer Jon Landau wanted to make a James Cameron-style event film, describing the movie as “a movie with themes bigger than its genre” and “has a central relatable character, who on many levels, is an ordinary character who ends up doing extraordinary things against this epic backdrop.” Alita: Battle Angel, which the site’s own Hoai-Tran Bui rightfully praised as Hollywood’s first good manga adaptation, certainly checks those boxes.
We spoke to Landau recently and he told us a bit more about the project’s history, working with Cameron, deleted scenes, and Avatar 2.
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