Ron Perlman

Ron Perlman in 13 SINS

Elliot Brindle (Mark Webber) is having a bad day. His hope for a promotion at work has instead resulted in being fired, and that doesn’t bode well for a man with a pregnant wife and a learning-impaired brother at home. A single phone call changes all of that by offering a chance at financial freedom. The catch? Complete a series of thirteen challenges without fail and without telling anyone else what’s happening. What could possibly go wrong? It starts with a deceptively innocuous challenge. The game show-friendly voice on the phone tells him to kill the fly currently buzzing around his head for $1000. Concerns over exactly how the man on the phone knows there’s a fly are brushed aside, and soon Elliot’s a grand richer. Then swallow the fly. Then make a little girl cry. Then do something involving a homeless man and an ostrich. It’s not too long before he’s moved beyond moral grey areas and started committing felonies, and the deeper he goes down the rabbit hole the harder it becomes to climb back out again. 13 Sins is a mix of dark comedy and vicious thrills, but while there are moments that surprise and sing far too much of it feels overly familiar. It’s a lesser sin to be sure, but it would surprise no one if there was a special place in hell for makers of unnecessary remakes.

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Depending on where you look, Pacific Rim is either in 2nd or 3rd place at the box office this weekend. But it should make enough money to warrant a sequel, especially with international business. And those of us who are into this new original property from Guillermo del Toro are really, really into it. There’s certainly franchise potential, what with its whole background mythology (and back story, which you can find in graphic novel form). Plus it’s going to at least gross more than del Toro’s first Hellboy film, and that spawned a part II. There’s also the fact that Legendary Pictures began moving ahead on developing Pacific Rim 2 way back in December, hiring the first film’s screenwriter, Travis Beacham, to start penning another installment. In the months since, he and del Toro have been sharing some bare bits and pieces and possible ideas for what happens next. The details are thin but these teases about the direction part 2 would go in allow for some educated guessing and speculation as to what we’d see as far as more monster and robot battles. Below I highlight some of what’s been officially said, some of what’s been drawn from those reports and some of what we’re simply hoping for with Pacific Rim 2. If you haven’t yet seen Pacific Rim, there are spoilers to be found ahead. So get off the computer, go see it and then come back to read further.

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Guillermo del Toro

Guillermo del Toro abides by zero perceived distinctions between high and low culture. Whether working with Hollywood popcorn properties like Blade II or Hellboy, or creating imaginative, dark arthouse fare like The Devil’s Backbone and Pan’s Labyrinth, del Toro has demonstrated a singular creative vision that stands out against an unimaginative Hollywood. That’s why this weekend’s Pacific Rim, despite being marketed as Transformers 4, promises to be a gloriously geeky respite in a summer of largely unsatisfactory blockbusters. Coupled with the recent news that del Toro might be directing a Charlie Kaufman-scripted adaptation of Kurt Vonnegut’s Slaughterhouse Five, there are many reasons to celebrate the fact that the restlessly imaginative man who introduced himself with Cronos bounced from the streamlined Hobbit adaptations. Equal parts Jim Henson, Brothers Quay, and Terry Gilliam, del Toro is a visionary who also happens to be a bankable name. That’s a pretty rare commodity these days. So here’s some free film school (for fans and filmmakers alike) from the guy who we’ve forgiven for making Mimic.

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Pacific Rim Robots

Another trailer for Guillermo Del Toro‘s Pacific Rim has been released, just in case you’re not already on board. The thing is, there’s not a whole lot that’s different about this new spot and the WonderConone we saw at the end of last month. You’ve got giant monsters battling giant robots in the sea and on land. You’ve got Idris Elba doing his best audition for the next rousing speeches supercut. You’ve got the tagline telling us to “Go Big or Go Extinct.” And you’ve got little bits (littler this time) of the likely comic relief characters played by Charlie Day and Ron Perlman. Honestly, I’d like to see more of the character stuff. Or something else besides big creatures and the kind of action that could just as easily sell a Michael Bay movie. At least the previous trailer hinted at some themes involving the humanity inside the robots. That which make them different from the monsters in spite of them initially being noted for their equal measure — big bad weapons of defense to go up against big bad weapons of offense. Knowing Del Toro, the big ideas are probably there, but of course that stuff doesn’t sell a movie to most people the way explosions and fighting behemoths do.

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Any time director Guillermo del Toro has been asked if he’s planning on making a third installment in his Hellboy franchise over the last few years, his responses have not been encouraging. His general feeling is that there are just too many new and exciting things to do out there to go back to the Hellboy well for a third time. Seeing as Hellboy 2 has earned a lot of fans over the years, and there’s a great big, world-ending prophecy storyline that could be tackled in Hellboy 3, a lot of people have taken these comments as being a huge disappointment. But news coming out of Comic-Con sees del Toro’s tune changed quite a bit in regards to another go-around with the red-skinned one. Entertainment Weekly got the director and Ron Perlman together to talk about their latest project, Pacific Rim, and he dropped this bomb on them, “I can say publicly that now we are together in trying (to do Hellboy 3).” This was something of a shocking statement, that Perlman fleshed out by adding, “The [first] two movies were really set up to have this unbelievable resolve. Everything that was done in both movies was leading up to this destiny, written in stone, of what Hellboy has been summoned to Earth to do. To not do it, particularly in light of the scope that Guillermo is thinking of for the resolve, would be in my mind a little bit of a shame.”

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Why should you go see Frankie Go Boom this October 12? If not to support a burgeoning talent in newcomer writer/director Jordan Roberts, do it because it stars names like Charlie Hunnam (who you might know from Undeclared or Sons of Anarchy), Lizzy Caplan (who is awesome in everything she does), Whitney Cummings (who has a lot to make up for after making us sit through her sitcom) and Chris O’Dowd (who charmed the world as the love interest in Bridesmaids and most likely has big things ahead of him). And, if all of those names aren’t enough to convince you to buy a ticket, see Frankie Go Boom in order to take in just how beautiful Ron Perlman looks when he’s dressed up as a woman.

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What is Movie News After Dark? The title seems pretty self explanatory, at least where the topic of conversation and timing are concerned. You should also note that it happens every night of the week and is read all around the world. Thanks for joining in on the fun. We begin tonight’s rundown with an image of Ron Perlman visiting Zachary. Who is Zachary? You might ask. He’s a six-year old boy currently undergoing treatment for leukemia, whose Make-a-Wish desire was to “meet and become Hellboy.” The folks at Spectral Motion, the creature effects shop of Guillermo Del Toro, and Perlman were more than happy to oblige. And here’s a tissue…

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The Mayans, the wise race of ancients who created hot cocoa, set December 21st, 2012 as the end date of their Calendar, which the intelligent and logical amongst us know signifies the day the world will end, presumably at 12:21:12am, Mountain Time. From now until zero date, we will explore the 50 films you need to watch before the entire world perishes. We don’t have much time, so be content, be prepared, be entertained. The Film: Quest For Fire (1981) The Plot: 80,000 years ago in the time of the neanderthal one of the most precious commodities was fire. It served to cook food, keep warm, and ownership of fire by a tribe of human ancestors was a sign of power – because at that time it was not understood as to how it could be manufactured. When one such tribe gets brutally attacked by another group they lose their flame in the aftermath. Three of the group’s males (Nicholas Kadi, Everett McGill, and Ron Perlman in his first film role) break from the tribe and trek the land in search of another flame, and on their journey encounter groups of similar beings; some of which are as brutal as the creatures that attacked them earlier, and others more ‘strange’ to their current level of understanding.

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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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Anytime you can’t tell whether a trailer is for a real movie or a parodic lark, it reaffirms the need to give it a second or third look. That’s priceless for a lower budget movie based off an internet meme. Bad Ass, a totally real, actual movie, stars Danny Trejo as a bearded man riding a bus who is set upon by local street toughs. When video of him taking their asses out to the curb goes viral, he becomes a crime fighter. It’s based, of course, on Epic Beard Man – an Oakland bus rider who encountered the exact situation (including delivering a whooping and becoming a viral video star). So, why not watch the trailer and the original viral video together? Check it out for yourself, and start growing a beard for justice.

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Everyone’s complained about misleading and overly spoilerific trailers at one point or another. They’re all annoying, but they’re trailers. We deal with them. Well, at least that used to be the case. Now one member of society who’s so fed up with studios selling their movies in a “bait-and-switch” fashion is taking this very, very serious matter to where it belongs: the justice system! What film provoked her to take such an action? None other than FilmDistrict’s critical and fanboy darling, Drive. Sarah Deming has filed a lawsuit — which will soon be a class action lawsuit, apparently — against FilmDistrict and the theater she viewed the film at, Emagine Novi. To her great disappointment, the movie wasn’t Fast and Furious enough.

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The world has descended into chaos. An artsy, color coordinated chaos to be sure, but still, society has taken a turn for the worse. To combat it the world’s government bans all firearms in an effort to quell the escalating violence. The result is a fusion of the Old West and the Far East as disagreements and feuds are handled solely through fisticuffs, swordplay, and a strict code of honor. Two strangers ride into town, not on a horse, but on a train. The Drifter (Josh Hartnett) is looking for a card game and Yoshi (Gackt) is here at his dead father’s request, but both men also have a secret purpose involving the town’s big boss, Nicola the Woodcutter (Ron Perlman). Their dueling quests will bring them in contact with each other, but it also finds them crossing paths with The Bartender (Woody Harrelson), Yoshi’s hot cousin Momoko (Emily Kaiho), the mysterious Alexandra (Demi Moore), and Nicola’s red-suited army led by Killer #2 (Kevin McKidd). What follows is a storybook tale with an arresting visual style that brings comic book pages to life on a stage-like setting. It’s theater for a new age that works as often as it doesn’t depending on who and/or what is onscreen, but even when it fails as an engaging narrative it often manages to delight the senses with a barrage of imagery both broad and specific. It’s a genre movie in cotton candy trappings, and while it runs a bit too long it’s a […]

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This week, on a very special episode of Reject Radio, we speak with legendary actor Ron Perlman about his white dreadlocks in Bunraku, we’ll chat with The Dark Knight Rises executive producer Michael Uslan about his incredible journey to bringing Batman to the screen, and we’ll talk with Brian Salisbury and Luke Mullen about favorite films from Fantastic Fests past to get excited for the debauchery of this week. Plus, Screenrant editors/Screenrant Underground Podcast hosts Ben Kendrick and Rob Keyes fight to the pain in our Movie News Pop Quiz. Is it any wonder we end up talking about Qwikster? Download This Episode

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Culture Warrior

Masculinity has always been the major topic of concern in the work of Danish filmmaker Nicolas Winding Refn. Just look at the series he made his name with, the Pusher trilogy, which in three installments provide three very different but equally compelling stories of occasionally brazen, often buffoonish masculinity within various facets of the Copenhagen illegal drug trade. So it is no surprise that the directors latest work (his ‘breakthrough’ years, if you will) are continuously concerned with the turbulent lives of men, culminating this weekend with his most ‘mainstream’ entry, Drive (in purely box-office terms, as Drive in its opening weekend made more than 84x what his previous two films made together, yet the film is still ripe with Refn’s eccentric signature). Refn’s thematic and narrative preoccupation with masculinity has produced three fascinating portraits in as many years. The temporal and social contexts of Bronson, Valhalla Rising, and Drive couldn’t be more disparate, but between them he’s produced an unofficial trilogy of sorts connected not only through his deliberate pacing and striking, almost invasive visual style, but more importantly through their shared concerns as portrayals of three aggressive men who wander their respective environments in solitude.

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This week, Fat Guy Kevin Carr feels the weight of the fall movie season. It’s September, and while the kids are heading back to school, he’s playing hooky with Sarah Jessica Parker chick flicks and yet another not-quite-70s-video-nasty remake. Kevin is consoled by the release of Drive, however, because Albert Brooks as a crime boss makes him chuckle. And his love for 3D and Disney meet head-on in a collision of awesomeness.

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A getaway driver (Ryan Gosling) waits as his temporary partners in crime pile in with their unspecified haul, and as the police close in behind them the driver does what he does best. Straight-faced, calm, and in control, he eludes capture through precision and restraint, and when the job’s over he walks away. But what happens when walking away is no longer an option? Driver (as he’s listed in the credits) meets, befriends, and falls for a young woman (Carey Mulligan) and her son who may just be the only real innocents left in Los Angeles. When her husband is released from jail and forcibly tasked to commit one last robbery to pay off a debt, Driver steps in to assist and spare mother and son any further anguish. Things do not go as planned. If the bare mechanics of Drive‘s plot seem overly familiar it’s because they are. The character of Driver could easily be imagined in any number of westerns, samurai epics, or Clint Eastwood films as the nameless stranger who appears to skirt both sides of the law but who shows his true colors when it comes to protecting or avenging the innocent. His past is unclear but we know those gaps are most likely filled with violence, loss and more violence. And the idea of “one last job that goes wrong” has become so ubiquitous that it’s a wonder Friedberg & Seltzer haven’t spoofed it by now (in a film destined to be creatively titled One […]

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Director Nicolas Winding Refn‘s first Hollywood outing, Drive, is a successful and propulsive dive into the world of commercialism. Instead of tackling a work-for-hire type of gig, the semi-auteur has stuck to his unrelenting, darkly comedic, and playful style. The director took a simple premise and storyline, and made an 80s-inspired, pop music-fueled western about a lone samurai. Does that sound like the atypical Hollywood picture? It delivers the unexpected, similar to how Refn does in person. This is the second time I’ve interviewed the on-the-rise filmmaker, and he’s the type of interviewee that keeps you on your feet. Most of the time his responses are brief, to the point, and often odd. Sometimes that’s for the better, especially since the Danish filmmaker is never at a loss for something interesting to say. Here’s what the self-described fetish filmmaker had to say about Pretty Woman, treating actors as human beings, embracing his feminine side, and the ending of Drive:

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Guy Moshe‘s live-action cartoon, Bunraku, lives or dies by its cast. The poppy world Moshe created calls for a specific type of acting, and not an easy one. The film requires a sense of unrealistic cool. Josh Hartnett plays a silent, but suave cowboy, and he has to spout out some dialog you would never hear a normal human being say. With Lucky Number Slevin, The Black Dahlia, and his brief scene in Sin City, Hartnett’s done that style of acting before. Here, he went about it differently. Instead of worrying about finding a grounding, as Hartnett says below, he wanted to embrace the odder tonal aspects. It bridges on cheesiness. But when one’s acting against Woody Harrelson cracking jokes or Ron Perlman looking the way he does in the film, it’s understandable that Hartnett would want to fit in with that scenery-chewing gang.

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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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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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