Paul WS Anderson

Pompeii

One of the best things about Paul W.S. Anderson‘s Three Musketeers trailer was that ridiculous gatling gun, so if he was willing to bring that kind of tech to 17th century, why not offer it up to the 1st? The weapons of Pompeii are all swords and fire, but maybe he’s saving the heavy anachronistic artillery for later. We can only hope. Also curiously missing is Milla Jovovich flipping around and kicking people. It hardly looks like an Anderson movie at all. So what does it have? A bunch of people encased in ash, Emily Browning kissing Kit Harington with gusto and one pissed-off volcano. Check out the trailer for yourself:

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Pompeii

Who wants to see an overly CGI’ed version of a volcano erupting while people in gaudy non-historically accurate togas are covered in ash? If you raised your hand, you should know you’re reading the internet so no one can see you, but it’s probably also a good sign that you’ll love Paul W.S. Anderson‘s next project. According to the Hollywood Reporter, Anderson is set for Pompeii, a retelling of the infamous disaster of 79AD where Mount Vesuvius destroyed two coastal villages, tragically preserving them for archeologists. Game of Thrones co-star Kit Harington will play the lead (a slave trying to save his true love and best friend) in what’s being described as a Titantic-like take on the event, injecting a romantic plot into a story ultimately about mass death. Of course, Anderson is no James Cameron. Still, the idea of making a movie about young love blooming in the face of an ending we will all see coming is an interesting one, and it might come as a great shock to high school movie-goers who haven’t taken that history class yet. It’s just a shame that Anderson is the one at the wheel here. How long until we know which role Milla Jovovich will take?

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The Resident Evil film series has always been a directly self-aware and reflexive property, an aspect that became all the more obvious with the fourth installment, which featured the most knowingly gratuitous 3D spectacle since the format’s digital resurgence began. Part five, the newly released Resident Evil: Retribution, is similarly in your face, both with its use of screen-popping 3D and with Paul W.S. Anderson’s typical straightforward exposition and an action style that’s so clear it’s cocky. Yet there also appears to be a subtext we tend not to expect from these movies, one involving a little girl who metaphorically represents the film itself. This child, Becky (played by 11-year-old Aryana Engineer), is found by series protagonist Alice (Milla Jovovich) in a suburbia simulation within an undersea Umbrella Corp. complex used for trial exercises in mass T-virus infection. Mistaken for the girl’s mother (who was a blonder clone of Alice), the heroine feels a need to protect and save the kid, even if this holds her and the rest of the mission back. And even if it would also seem the girl is barely a legitimate human being. On a superficial level, Becky simply seems to be Anderson’s latest homage to the Alien movies, specifically to the Newt character in Aliens. But unlike Newt, Becky has no significance to any movie centered on themes of motherhood. And why is she deaf? That’s a question I don’t think can be answered solely by the fact that the actress herself is partially […]

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Resident Evil

The Resident Evil series of movies has no special place in my heart and it’s slightly confusing how many there are compared to how many games there are, which characters are which in each installment, and why some characters have developed mental powers. That being said, they’re all pretty watchable in a bad/good battle way. On Friday at San Diego Comic-Con director Paul W.S. Anderson was joined by Milla Jovovich, Mika Nakashima, Boris Kodjoe, Oded Fehr, and Michelle Rodriguez, the latter two who are both returning from the dead for the franchise. What can we expect from what might be – but probably won’t be – the last installment?

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Junkfood Cinema - Large

Welcome back to Junkfood Cinema; always out of order. Every week, we throw the book at an especially, unlawfully bad movie. But just when it seems the movie has absolutely no case, we sweep in as champion defenders and get the charges against it dismissed on a few rose-colored technicalities. We then take everybody out for ice cream…or 3lb cinnamon rolls…or whatever we can wrangle. The last few weeks, we’ve thrown the book out (seriously, we are gonna lose that damn book if we keep throwing it) and abandoned our usual format. This week is no exception…nor is it exceptional…which is also no exception. Recently, we were able to get our hands on the stenographer’s report from one of the most landmark cases in American history. No, we’re not talking about some white collar stockbroker who shorted millions from the poor, nor are we talking about some drunk driving celebrity who may or may not have gotten wasted and careened into a roadside shark tank. We are in fact talking about a heated trial in the court of public opinion against a 2004 film which melded two beloved franchises. Here now is the recap of case #LV426-PRD; The People vs. Alien vs. Predator. 

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Unfortunately for this year’s WonderCon, I was only able to spend one day at the convention. When busting your cherry, convention or otherwise, it is often best to go nice and slow. While I’d have loved to get a few more hours at the convention, which moved to Anaheim, California, this year, I did more than just get my toes wet. Because it was raining. I spent the better, longer part of Saturday sitting in the massive ballroom at the Anaheim Convention Center, just down the street from Disneyland, staring up at a gigantic screen projecting clear images of actors, actresses, writers, and directors which, to my naked eye, were tiny specks about a quarter of a mile away. The panels I managed to get into included Lockout, Battleship, The Amazing Spider-Man, and Resident Evil: Retribution, so let’s all take a look together at the joyous cinematic wonders they had to show!

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Hell is one of those things that’s up for individual interpretation. Some people believe it’s a real place full of fire and brimstone, or it’s all made up, or it’s a state of mind. Some people think it’s a Shia LaBeouf marathon from which you can never turn away. So, with Hell as a setting, Hollywood basically has a blank slate. They can go the Old Testament route, or they can get more existential with it, or something in-between. (Even Hollywood can’t do the Shia LaBeouf marathon option. No studio would fund that.) As such, here are seven films and their take on the place bad folks go when they die. (Obviously, this contains spoilers for the films listed.)

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This past weekend saw the cinematic glory of Resident Evil: Afterlife pushing past security to get into your local theater even though it was moving slower than an instant replay in a curling match. The absolute atrocity of this film raises a lot of questions, but one of the first and foremost is whether or not directors should work with their spouses in a leading role. Paul W.S. Anderson, who thinks Milla Jovovich is as big an action star as Sigourney Weaver, is also married to Milla Jovovich, and while we can’t prove causation for the low marks in her performance here – we can certainly point to correlation. We can also point to 9 more husband and wife teams in order to find out if working with your legally bound significant other is really such a great idea.

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Sometimes a movie is so special that it cannot be contained by the standard review. When that happens, we’re more than happy to write an open letter to the production in the hopes of making everyone’s day a little brighter. In the case of Resident Evil: Afterlife, it’s about as special a movie as I’ve seen in a while.

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The Reject Report

It’s an uncommon thing when a film opening in less than 20 markets is getting more notoriety than the one opening on 2,800 screens. Such is the case this weekend. Resident Evil: Afterlife is the clear winner in terms of size. It has a rather good chance of even coming out #1. However, the most talked about film of the weekend features Joaquin Phoenix, a beard, and a year in the life of secluded madness. You be the judge who the true winner is. We’re just here to talk about box office.

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Juno Temple has been getting around lately. Not like that. Weirdos. What I mean is that she’s been getting a lot of work lately. Get your heads out of the toilet.

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resident-evil-header

Screen Gems has just sent out word this evening that they’ve finalized the cast and the story for Resident Evil: Afterlife, the fourth movie in the series based on the insanely popular Resident Evil video games.

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three-musketeers-header

The Three Musketeers! In three dimensions! In two years! All for one and one for all! …Meh. Unless this version also stars Oliver Platt, count me out.

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pandorum-header

The second trailer for Christian Alvart’s upcoming sci-fi thriller Pandorum has been released today via our friends at Screenrant, and boy does it look claustrophobic.

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Mila Jovovich in Resident Evil

That gaseous sound you hear is the collective sigh of relief escaping the bellies of film connoisseurs the world over…

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