Conan the Barbarian

Conan

Finally free from the oppressive chains of leading the great state of California, Arnold Schwarzenegger has wasted no time when it comes to lining up new project after new project. (Look! We even made a guide to all those new projects!) And yet, that just doesn’t seem to be enough for the action star. What else could he possibly want? Apparently, to be Conan the Barbarian again. Deadline Hollywood reports that Universal Pictures has lined up a deal for a brand new Schwarzenegger-starring Conan film, titled The Legend of Conan. No, you are not dreaming this. So, just what sort of Conan film are we in for, now that thirty years have passed since Schwarzenegger first played the character? Well, one that centers on a nearly-dead Conan. That sounds fun! Producer Fredrik Malmberg explains, “The original ended with Arnold on the throne as a seasoned warrior, and this is the take of the film we will make…It’s that Nordic Viking mythic guy who has played the role of king, warrior, soldier and mercenary, and who has bedded more women than anyone, nearing the last cycle of his life. He knows he’ll be going to Valhalla, and wants to go out with a good battle.”

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Let me tell you of the days of high adventure! Those days surely include Arnold Schwarzenegger providing another grand achievement in film commentary, and though we’ve already covered Total Recall, we weren’t going to let that little fact stand in our way of checking in with Arnie once again this week. The commentary the Governator recorded with director John Milius for Conan the Barbarian has gone down in history as one of the greats, a true wonder to behold. It’s the movie that made Arnold a star, and he thankfully provides a commentary as awesome as the movie itself. But, in case you aren’t ready to behold it just yet, we’ve got you covered. So here, by the will of Crom, are all 33 things we learned while listening to the Conan the Barbarian commentary – that is, besides crushing your enemies, seeing them driven before you, and hearing the lamentation of their women. That comes later.

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Junkfood Cinema - Large

Welcome back to Junkfood Cinema; the Riddle of Steel…is that Shaq should not play superheroes. You’ve entered a mythic realm of swords and sorcery, of Tangos and Cashes, of Mikes and Ikes. Every week, our hero (read: pudgy misanthrope) battles a tremendous schlock monster – as well as the sinister threat of early onset heart failure. With his sharp words, he slices the beast open, spilling its flaws upon the ground before hoisting the entrails aloft in celebration. To commemorate this all-too-violent metaphor, a feast of one tasty snack food item will be prepared and set before you. A couple weeks ago, the Alamo Drafthouse launched its Summer of 1982 series; a celebration of arguably the greatest season of the greatest year to ever…fall two years before I was born. Dozens of iconic films, both real people legit and JFC-approved, are being screened, including a certain sword and sandal epic that redefined swords, sandals, and indiscernible Austrian meat piles: Conan the Barbarian. We all remember Conan, he was the gentle oaf-beast who solved most of his problems by cleaving said problem’s head in twain while he struggled with words far less complicated than twain. He battled the Snake Cult and it’s malevolent leader Thulsa Doom (which translated into English from the ancient text means, “This is CNN”). We all remember that classic moment in which Conan is seated in the center of the banquet table, like a roided-up centerpiece, while his masters make him recite what is best in life. […]

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What is Movie News After Dark? This week it’s a series of second stringer fill-ins trying not to run things into the ground while regular columnist Neil Miller disappears for a while due to reasons both glamorous and mysterious (in true Lohan fashion, he’s cited both “exhaustion” and “being dehydrated”). And today it’s a laundry list of Internet people still crushing on Joss Whedon’s superhero extravaganza, The Avengers, because Tim Burton’s Dark Shadows shit the bed this weekend and we haven’t had anything shiny to come along to steal away our fickle attentions yet. Let’s get to it. The above image comes from an artist named Hannah, who has proven that her finger is firmly on the pulse of the Internet by paying tribute both to the death of beloved children’s author Maurice Sendak as well as the work of beloved nerd-God Joss Whedon by mashing up Sendak’s artistic style with the cast of The Avengers. Is cute, no?

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What is Movie News After Dark? It’s just as movie-obsessed as you are, which is why it continues to give you all this fun and fancy content on a nightly basis. Every weeknight at 10p Central, 11p Eastern and 6a in Istanbul (which, depending on the season, is still during a dark time of day). We begin tonight with the most adorable promotional photo for a hardline sci-fi movie ever. Prometheus stars Michael Fassbender, Charlize Theron and Noomi Rapace aren’t doing service to the seriousness of Ridley Scott’s upcoming epic, but they sure are having fun.

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Alamo Drafthouse Summer of 1982

Blade Runner. Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan. The Road Warrior. The list of incredible films released during the summer of 1982 goes on and on. From E.T. to Tron, it could very well be the greatest summer of movies in the history of nerds, geeks, lovers of cinema and eaters of popcorn. It was one of those summers that defined the term “Summer Movie.” The only sad thing about it is that 1982 came before many of us were born. An entire generation of movie geeks who grew up with these movies, but never quite got to experience them all together as they did in that one magical summer. The Alamo Drafthouse is looking to change that. To celebrate the 30th anniversary of the “greatest summer of movies ever,” our friends at the Alamo have designed a screening series unlike any other. Mirroring the release schedule — to the best of their ability — of the Summer of 1982, the Drafthouse will present 1982′s best blockbusters in 35mm, with plenty of Mondo posters, special guests and a few other surprises that — and I say this with only limited knowledge beyond what we’re telling you here — will absolutely blow your minds. They’ve asked a special group of websites — Film School Rejects included — to co-host each screening. We drew The Road Warrior. It’s basically the greatest thing to happen to us since, well, we first saw The Road Warrior. So if you’re in the area of an Alamo Drafthouse, we’ve […]

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We can complain all we want, rationalize, or hope for the best, but the easiest way to stop the remake assault that studios have foisted upon audiences is not to pay for it. The studio system still hasn’t found a silver bullet for killing the monster of low attendance, and 2011 might have been the worst wake-up call they could get. Movie attendance fell by 4.4% from 2010, down to the lowest level since 1995. The problematic silver lining is that foreign sales are higher, which could result in even more broadly-appealing (and “appealing” is used generously here) movies that are generic and treat dialogue like a second-class citizen. On the losing side of the field (the one where producers aren’t having Gatorade dumped on them), are the remakes of 2011. Remakes are thought to be attractive because they come with built-in name recognition for audiences, and development has already been partially done for a story that’s already proven itself as a money-maker. For fans, they’re also infuriating because they signal both a lack of creativity coming out of an industry built on it and the potential (likely) bastardization of something we hold dear (and, yes, of course the original is still out there; it’s the principle of the thing). So it may come as pleasant news for some to see that remakes, regardless of their quality of genre, failed spectacularly at the box office this year. It’s the kind of thing that may just deter producers from trying to […]

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Ron Perlman has been a force in television and film for three decades. He’s no stranger to fans, especially those he won as Hellboy and as Clay Morrow on Sons of Anarchy, and he’s appeared in a handful of movies every year since 1993 (with 1996 and 1999 being the only years he appeared in only one). You know him. You love him. Now, we’re ready to pronounce 2011 The Year of The Perlman because while he’s worked steadily in movies small and big alike for a long time, this was the year that he really ate his spinach and showed his face in an almost absurd amount of flicks. What’s more, his performances spanned the quality spectrum enough to earn him the Shyamalan Award For Bizarrely Up and Down Work. It’s important to note that his acting was rock steady throughout, but even with (and with the addition of his talents), he was in some terrible (and some amazing) movies. From prestige films, to independent action, to summer epics, to that one thing with Nic Cage, Ron Perlman was everywhere doing everything.

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As we all sit here at Reject HQ, gathered around an absurdly long, but incredibly imposing, table discussing what to do with the nuclear missiles we just “creatively appropriated” from a breakaway Russian republic, it occurs to us that 2011 was a great year to be bad. For every boring, dopey, goody-good hero that popped up on the silver screen, there was a brilliant, super cool, woefully misunderstood villain doing everything he/she/it could to thwart the zero hero at every turn. So when Supreme Commander #1, better known to the world (and those pesky Avengers so they’ll stop blasting our lair) as Neil Miller, issued an official order (delivered by a specially-trained, fire-breathing, gun-toting alligator who lives in the moat) to construct a supersonic death ray…that assignment went to Kate “Femme Fatale” Erbland. But then I got asked to do this list of the 20 Best Villains of 2011, a decided promotion from my usual position as sinister cocktail-fetcher and cleaner of the diabolical gutters.

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This Week in DVD

Happy Thanksgiving everyone, and welcome to a mostly turkey-free edition of This Week In DVD. Two big releases hit shelves this week that on the surface couldn’t be further apart, but in actuality share at least two things in common… both Conan the Barbarian and Super 8 are fun but incredibly flawed. Also out this week are a couple forgettable horror movies from Asia, a mediocre film with a fantastic lead performance (or two), a must own Criterion title and more. As always, if you see something you like, click on the image to buy it. The Adventures of Tintin: Season One Young Tintin is an intrepid reporter constantly on the trail of bad deeds and bad guys as he sets out to solve mysteries along with his dog Snowy and a group of oddball friends and acquaintances. This short-lived series from the early nineties is loosely based on the classic French creation (and shares some specific story elements with the upcoming movie). The adventures are entertaining and filled with action, and they feature elements that never talk down to kids including murder, drug smuggling, alcoholism and more. So yeah, it’s my kind of cartoon.

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Arrested Development is coming back

What is Movie News After Dark? It’s a nightly movie news column that never got to go to Motherboy, as it’s not human and does not, as it turns out, have a mother. It will have to take to watching old episodes of Arrested Development to fuel its disfunction. Or perhaps it can watch some new episodes… Tonight’s top story, Arrested Development is coming back. And we have Netflix to thank for it. The DVD rental service turned confused corporate buffoon turned hero to all in the kingdom of nerddom has inked a deal, along with 20th Century Fox, to bring back AD for 10 episodes that will stream exclusively to Netflix subscribers in early 2013. And there’s still a rumor about a movie, but lets not get ahead of ourselves. Editor’s Note: There’s also more news this evening, so keep reading…

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The Reject Report

They came. They stood. They weren’t afraid of a thing. And when the dust settled, they swept that up with the rest of the competition. Here in its third weekend out, The Help continues to pull in new as well as repeat audiences, and is very close to breaking the $100m barrier. Subsequent from its opening weekend, its percentage drops have been quite impressive: 23.1% down last weekend from the weekend before and 28.4% down this weekend from last. Though future weekends might see films open big enough to knock the period drama out of the top spot, its percentage downsizing doesn’t seem likely to grow, and The Help will end up being quite the success story come year end. And that’s even before the expected Oscar nominations for it are announced. Colombiana and Don’t Be Afraid of the Dark’s numbers were somewhat flip-flopped from what I anticipated. Colombiana was the only other film besides The Help to pull in double digits this weekend, but just barely. It didn’t perform too terribly worse than Olivier Megaton’s previous film’s opening weekend. Transporter 3 debuted with $12m, and ended up topping $100m worldwide. With Luc Besson’s name attached to Colombiana as well, you can expect foreign numbers to be much more favorable than domestic.

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So many headlines that got lost after this weekend’s box office totals came in. “Conan Crushes His Enemies”. “Crom Shines on Conan the Barbarian”. There were a few others, but it’s moot now. Not only was Conan the Barbarian unable to beat out the returning power of The Help or Rise of the Planet of the Apes, the 3-D boost it had was just barely enough to get it into double digits. It was an even sadder state of affairs for Fright Night, which debuted out of the top 5.

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There are few things in this world greater than the feeling one gets from taking vengeance upon the people who murdered your father. Holding a fluffy puppy fresh out of the dryer is probably one. Receiving oral pleasures on the beach definitely. And winning free movie-related paraphernalia is another. Conan the Barbarian sliced its way into theaters today, and to celebrate we’re giving away two swag-filled prize packs! Each pack contains two t-shirts (pictured to the right), one copy of the film’s score, one character poster, and one final theatrical poster. How can you win? Simple… what’s your favorite hack n slash fantasy themed film? It’s a broad category and covers pretty much any period film with swords and magic from Highlander to The Return of the King. (Please note, The Cable Guy does not count just because it features a scene set at Medieval Times.) Tell us in the comment section below what your favorite is and why. Remember, this is “favorite” not best. Because there’s only one answer for the best, and that answer is Hawk the Slayer.

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My dad took my sister and me to a Sunday afternoon double feature once as a reward for being awesome kids. Presumably. I don’t recall how we convinced him to take us, but the bigger question here is do theaters even do double features anymore? Two movies for the price of one? Am I just that old? First up was Steven Spielberg’s E.T: The Extraterrestrial, and as expected all three of us loved it. The theater was packed, and as the end credits rolled it was clear that everyone would be staying for the second film as well. That second movie, inexplicably, was Arnold Schwarzenegger’s Conan the Barbarian. The first hint that this might not be a good idea struck my dad around the thirty minute mark when Conan enters the dwelling of a loose woman… and his fears were confirmed three minutes later when Arnold starts thrusting his bare-ass between the naked witch’s legs. Reluctantly, my dad stood, gave the witch’s sweaty flesh one last glance, and then led us on a long walk of shame up the aisle to the exit. I tell you that so I can tell you this… my dad would not have felt it necessary to do the same thing during the brand new incarnation of Robert E. Howard‘s classic tale. It’s far more cartoonish than offensive. And that’s not even the most surprising thing about the new movie… Marcus Nispel‘s Conan the Barbarian is also a fairly entertaining and enjoyable romp filled with […]

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This week, Fat Guy Kevin Carr flexes his rippling muscles and sets out to live a warrior lifestyle, just like Jason Momoa in Conan the O’Barbarian. But before he can do that, he has to drive a stake through his neighbor’s heart, since he’s certain he lives next door to a vampire. What else could all those sparkles be about? Meanwhile, he sends his kids off to a dangerous 3D, Aroma-Vision mission, hoping they can make it as real spy kids so they can teach him to put on a fake British accent and woo a not-quite-British Anne Hathaway.

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It’s been a pretty hard life for John Rambo ever since he signed up to go overseas and serve his country in Vietnam. He was turned into an expert in guerrilla warfare. Made the best with guns, with knives, with his bare hands. He was trained to ignore pain, ignore weather, to live off the land. To eat things that would make a billy goat puke. In Vietnam his job was to dispose of enemy personnel, to kill, period. Win by attrition. And after a rough patch where the guy just couldn’t adjust to life after Nam, we sent him back there to slaughter hundreds more and get our POWs. Then we sent him to Afghanistan, where he killed about a thousand more people. I thought that was it for the guy, but then he ended up having to do the same in Burma. Isn’t it about time we let this guy live out his final years in peace? No. You just don’t turn it off. There’s a segment of the population out there who think that First Blood is a decent movie, but the subsequent Rambo sequels are cheesy and exploitative and lame. Those people are ridiculous. The Rambo sequels are cheesy and exploitative and awesome. Even 2008’s Rambo, where we get Rambo as an old man, is completely amazing. He tears out throats with his bare hand and explodes guys by hitting them with close range high caliber machine gun fire. What more do you want? Well, I […]

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Junkfood Cinema

Yes, we know we let suspect pictures containing very little health benefits drown us in their half-nakedness and drag us through the dirt like a barbarian here in this column, but we like it rough and prefer our movies to treat us like ragdolls from time to time because after we’ve mended the scrapes and burns we have ourselves a little snack reminding us of our experience because you should never forget when you’ve been triumphed in life.

Today we visit one of the greatest sequels ever released in June 1984 and Schwarzenegger’s best film of that year’s first 9 months. Sit back, chug some mead and let us tell you about the days of high adventure in Conan the Destroyer.

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This week, on a very special episode of Reject Radio, Jason Momoa talks Conan, director Joann Sfar talks Gainsbourg, concept designer Jerad Marantz talks rising Apes and Spidey’s costume, and action icon Renny Harlin discusses his latest film 5 Days of War. Plus, our old friend Scott Weinberg goes up against FSR’s own Gwen Reyes in a Movie News Pop Quiz that leads us to talking about sexy animated characters. Don’t judge. You know you think Ariel is the bee’s knees. Listen Here: Download This Episode

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Marcus Nispel is known as a work-for-hire type of director. The type of filmmaker that’s brought onto a project to craft a studio’s vision versus his own. Coming from the world of Platinum Dunes’ micromanagement, he’s worked on films that are not meant for auteurs. The projects he’s been a part of are calculated products, and Nispel is more than aware of it. The Friday the 13th and Texas Chainsaw Massacre remaker knows how the game goes for his franchise starter films. With Conan the Barbarian, Nispel got the chance to make a different type of blockbuster: a hard-R that features a misogynistic, barbaric lead. However, the director still was a “dog on many leashes,” as he described the process. Hopefully, Nispel still managed to create a version of Conan that lives up to the idea of an R-rated tent-pole release about a barbarian who thirsts for blood. Here’s what Nispel had to say about avoiding film school, making someone else’s vision, and how filmmaking is like raising children:

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published: 04.16.2014
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published: 04.16.2014
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published: 04.14.2014
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published: 04.14.2014
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