Spawn

90s superhero teamup

Superhero cinema is experiencing a boom, a resurgence that began right around the turn of the new century. Cape-and-cowl movies haven’t just been legitimized, they are now parlaying their popularity into expanding their mythologies and crafting interconnected on-screen universes. Suffice to say, their foothold on multiplex prominence is sturdy. But it was not always so. Prior to Sam Raimi‘s Spider-Man, unless your hero moniker rhymed with Scatcan or Schmooperman, it was unlikely you would get your own theatrical franchise. And even those two tentpole heroes experienced a falling-off and an eventual total lack of quality. Superman was forced to fight Nuclear Man and Joel Schumacher did his very best to further The Dearth Plight. Pursuant to a 1990s kick that which we inexplicably find ourselves on here at Junkfood Cinema (and seriously if any of you happen to know the cure for a bad case of the blands, let us know), we thought we’d take a look at some of the smaller, darker heroes that cropped up like weeds during this strange filmic era. More specifically, we’re going to be examining an important moment in made-up film history. Long before Joss Whedon put together his blockbuster adaptation of The Avengers, an attempt was made by some of the characters from ’90s superhero films to form their own team. According to the New England Journal of Shut-Up-and-Use-Your-Imagination, this attempt failed…miserably. Luckily, we’re bored enough to envision a stenographer on hand for this momentous occasion that unfolded entirely in our heads. Here […]

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This Week in Blu-ray

Brits running for the glory of the Empire, a fourth helping of Pie, an insanely brilliant racing hero and a few absolute bummers. That’s the company we keep This Week in Blu-ray as we take a look through the likes of American Reunion, The Flowers of War, Cherry Bomb, Spawn and Senna making their Blu debuts. It all begins, of course, with our pick of the week. Chariots of Fire Warner Bros. was able to kill two birds with one remaster this year. Not only are we getting this classic story of faith and fitness in a glorious Blu-ray release, but they’re also giving it a renewed theatrical showing in the UK in honor of the 2012 London Olympics. It’s all perfectly timed, as Chariots does tell the story of two Olympians, a Jewish man who runs to battle prejudice and a devoutly Catholic Scottish man who runs despite his dedication to his faith and its missions. Together, they brought glory to Britain in the 1924 Olympics. The result is a timeless convergence of sportsmanship and cinema showmanship, a well-acted, thoroughly emotional experience at the hand of director Hugh Hudson. The score, most notably the synthesizer heavy opening theme, is the stuff of pop culture legend. It will live on long beyond the memory of those who know where it originates, from the Academy Award winning score of Vangelis. The choice to go 80s synth instead of big, sweeping orchestral work for a triumphant story of national heroism in the 1920s was a bold one, […]

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In theory, CGI should never break your suspension of disbelief (unless you’re watching a Syfy Original or Birdemic, in which case it was never there in the first place).  In practice, budgets get tight, time gets short, and even mega-blockbusters like Lords of the Rings or Harry Potter will have a couple of crappy looking scenes. But sometimes movies that don’t even really need much CGI will toss it in for a short sequence, whether it’s just to show off,  save money, or even to mask Bill the microphone guy’s fuck up. Inevitably, though, at least one of those scenes ends up looking like the production company outsourced the job to someone’s Nintendo 64. When big budget movies have bargain basement special effects, everyone wins. And by “everyone,” I mean “no one,” and by “wins,” I mean “is paying attention to the movie anymore because they’re too busy laughing.” I’ve taken the liberty of considering this part 1 of a multi-part series, because I know that this is an endless well from which I can perpetually draw. In related news, I am lazy and uncreative.

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spawn_1

Apparently we’re buzzing again with news that Spawn 2 might actually, finally be made. Todd McFarlane sounds optimistic, but should we?

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published: 12.19.2014
A-
published: 12.18.2014
C-
published: 12.17.2014
B+


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