Netflix’s new original series Altered Carbon is a big, bold, visually stunning sci-fi extravaganza. Unfortunately, the story the show is telling fails to live up to the jaw-dropping visuals on display, ultimately robbing the series of its power.
Minor spoilers follow.
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Disney has a solid legacy of family-friendly inspirational sports movies, and McFarland, USA looks to be the latest. Kevin Costner stars as a coach who begins work at a relatively cash-poor and predominantly Latino high school in Central Valley CA. Inspired by a true story from 1987, Costner’s coach finds himself working with a promising group of young runners, and they all eventually forge a competitive cross-country team. Whale Rider and North Country director Niki Caro calls the shots; check out the McFarland USA trailer below. Read More »
I’ll admit, I didn’t like Joe Carnahan‘s Smokin Aces as much as I was hoping to. Disappointed is probably the appropriate word. That’s not to say there isn’t things to like about the film… it just wasn’t the balls out action film that many were expecting. And the direct-to-dvd sequel, Smokin’ Aces 2: Assassin’s Ball, isn’t likely to be any better. In fact, it will probably be a lot worse, especially considering that Lost Boys: The Tribe director P.J. Pesce is at the helm.
The press release advertises that the film “features a sexy cast, whip-smart script and hyper-kinetic visuals.” The big selling point is that Lazlo Soot and the Tremor Brothers from the original theatrical film make their return. Here is the short plot synopsis (plot? do we really need a plot in a Smokin Aces direct-to-video sequel?):
Federal agents once again match wits with a cadre of creative killers in the high-octane feature-length film Smokin’ Aces 2: Assassins’ Ball. Walter Weed (Tom Berenger) is an unassuming desk jockey at the FBI when the Bureau uncovers a plot to assassinate him. A team of degenerate, psychotic assassins dispatched by mystery man Hal Leuco to win a huge bounty includes a resourceful beauty who has a unique method of killing her prey (Martha Higareda), a power-tool wielding psychopath (Vinnie Jones) and a deadly master of disguise (Tommy Flanagan). Also in the hunt is the fan-favorite Tremor family from the original film, featuring nymphomaniacal gun-nut (Autumn Reeser) and her lethal kinfolk (Maury Sterling, Michael Parks and C. Ernst Harth). Baker (Clayne Crawford), the agent in charge of the operation, puts himself and his team in the line of fire to defend Weed, but it’s not until the smoke clears on the film’s explosive climax that the surprising identity of the plot’s mastermind is revealed.
Still with me? You can watch the trailer embedded after the jump.
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