What Is Marvel’s Civil War? An Introduction to the Comics Storyline That Pits Iron Man vs. Captain America

by     Posted 3 days ago

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Quite the bit of news has been revealed the past week.  Not only is Robert Downey Jr. in talks to co-star in the third installment of the Captain America franchise, but this may very well usher in one of the biggest storylines in Marvel history, Civil War.  Don’t know what Civil War is and why it’s causing such a fuss?  Collider has your back as we thought it would be a great opportunity to walk you through the origins of the event, its players, its ending, and how it could possibly be orchestrated in the current Marvel movie landscape.  Hit the jump for our in-depth look at the Marvel storyline, Civil War.

The Films of Andrew Dominik: THE ASSASSINATION OF JESSE JAMES BY THE COWARD ROBERT FORD

by     Posted 4 days ago

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Andrew Dominik’s second feature film, The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford is an unmitigated masterpiece.  After testing out his prowess on the fleet, trim Chopper Dominik went for a stately sprawl for his followup and pulled it off with remarkable precision.  A slow, meditative western with a commercially unwieldly title (Brad Pitt reportedly made it part of his deal that the studio wasn’t allowed to abbreviate it)  -  the film was facing an uphill commercial battle from the beginning, despite the starpower of its lead.  Not knowing how to market such a thing, Warner Bros. released Jesse James into a scant 301 theaters in the fall of 2007 to the tune of a $3.9 million domestic gross.

A Horrifying Education: SLEEPAWAY CAMP

by     Posted 8 days ago

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I don’t avoid any genre of cinema, but horror is my blind spot.  I have favorite horror films, but the genre is so rich and diverse, and I feel like I haven’t even come close to scratching the surface.  Thankfully, I’m now lucky enough to be working alongside two horror aficionados, Evan and Perri.  Since October means Halloween and therefore horror, we decided to do a four-entry feature where they would decide on four horror films I would have to watch and then report back with my thoughts.  They would then reply with why they chose the film, their thoughts on it, and the movie’s legacy.  Hopefully, if you’re as ignorant of horror films as I am, you’ll join in on the lesson.

Hit the jump for our thoughts on the first assignment, 1983′s Sleepaway Camp. [Note: To encourage discussion, the comments section can contain spoilers.]

The Best Films of 2014 So Far Range from BOYHOOD to GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY

by     Posted 14 days ago

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2014 has been a pretty good year for film, and while there are still plenty more movies to look forward to in this final quarter, it never hurts to stop and think back on what we’ve already seen.  Groundbreaking dramas like Boyhood challenged the entire structure of filmmaking, superhero blockbusters like Guardians of the Galaxy reminded us that a good movie is a good movie no matter the genre, and comedies like 22 Jump Street simultaneously made us laugh and think about the entire idea of movie sequels as a concept.  For a brief refresher on some of the best films of 2014 thus far, check out our feature over at Pepsi Pulse.

10 Things to Know About Walt Disney’s Beloved Home at Woking Way; Plus Over 20 Images of the House Today

by     Posted 22 days ago

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Earlier in September, Collider was invited to participate in a long-lead press day for both the Maleficent Blu-ray (available on November 4th) and the Diamond Edition Blu-ray of the animated classic Sleeping Beauty (available on October 7th).  Not only did we get to view a progression of how the artwork and animation of Sleeping Beauty developed, and were able to get insight from Animation Research Library representative Doug Engalla, we also learned about what it took to finally get Maleficent on the big screen, from executive producer Don Hahn.  While we will run what each of them had to say, closer to the release dates of each Blu-ray, we did want to share the coolest part of the experience, which was to spend time in and tour the house that Walt Disney had built in 1932.  Hit the jump to learn more about the property and the time he spent in it, and you can check out some photos, both from the time that he lived there with his family and how it looks now.

Aspiring filmmaker Walt Disney made his way from Kansas City to Hollywood in 1923.  Once there, he and his brother, Roy, launched Disney Bros. Studio out of a small storefront in Downtown Los Angeles, and then built a new studio on Hyperion Avenue in the Silver Lake District, as the company expanded.  It was there that an inker named Lillian Bounds was hired and soon caught Walt’s eye, marrying him in 1925.  And once Lilly became pregnant in 1932, Walt designed his future family home on a five-acre piece of property on Woking Way in Los Feliz, where the Disney family lived until 1950.  Being inside the home, knowing that there were so many special family moments, along with hours of artistic creativity spent developing a variety of different projects, you can feel a bit of that Disney magic.

Collider Goes to Universal Orlando’s Halloween Horror Nights 24: The Five Best Mazes of 2014

by     Posted 24 days ago

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At long last it’s officially fall!  That means turning leaves, sweater weather, and pumpkin everything but for the horror-hearted it also means movie marathons, haunted houses, and of course, Universal’s Halloween Horror Nights.  I’ve spent plenty of October nights at HHN here in Hollywood, but this year I was lucky enough to check out how they do horror in Orlando, and it turns out they do it really well.  When the gates parted on opening night I was there in the torrential Floridian downpour to get a first look at this year’s mazes and scare zones (they’re back!).  But before heading into the park, my group ducked into the Pantages Theater to speak with some of the minds behind the night’s event about their creative process, inspirations, and goals.  Hit the jump to see what they had to say and check out my picks for the five best mazes of the year at Universal Orlando’s Halloween Horror Nights 2014.

Book to Screen: THE MAZE RUNNER Works But Can’t Compare to James Dashner’s Book

by     Posted 28 days ago

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First off, I enjoyed Maze Runner the movie quite a bit.  It’s got a great pace, stunning visuals and strong performances all-around, but there are some significant differences between the book and the film and, simply put, the book does it better.  One of the biggest challenges of adapting a book to film is condensing it and more so than ever when you’re working with a narrative that goes down in a brand new environment like The Glade.

Not only did director Wes Ball have to develop a Glade full of multidimensional characters, but he also had to set up a brand new world and convey the rules that govern it.  The situation is actually pretty straightforward – there are kids trapped in a maze and they have to figure out how to get out – but then you’re wondering, why are they there?  Who put them there?  What’s going on in the outside world?  It isn’t easy answering those questions in less than two hours and that’s where the movie pales in comparison to the book, but there are other elements that are strong enough to make The Maze Runner one of the more successful YA adaptations we’ve got.  Hit the jump for the ups and downs of the adaptation process.  Warning: There are major spoilers for the book and the movie in this feature. 

The Work of David Fincher: Introduction, Commercials, Music Videos, and THE BEAT OF THE LIVE DRUM

by     Posted 30 days ago

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In an age where movies are designed to appeal to the broadest demographic possible and no one wants to feel too uncomfortable, David Fincher has gone against the grain time and time again, but his work is consistently engaging.  “I don’t know how much movies should entertain. To me, I’m always interested in movies that scar,” he told The Independent in 2010.  Known for his exacting, precise, and unique approach on-set, Fincher has consistently pushed boundaries with films that are divisive, thought-provoking, biting, and yet, for all their cynicism, strangely heartfelt.

In anticipation of the release of David Fincher’s latest film, Gone Girl, I’ll be looking back at his career and filmography.  In this first installment, I’ll be examining his work in commercials, music videos, and his first movie, Rick Springfield’s concert picture The Beat of the Live Drum.

Fall 2014 Horror Preview: ANNABELLE, OUIJA, THE GUEST, ABCS OF DEATH 2, and More

by     Posted 49 days ago

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It’s been a rather rough year for horror.  So far, there hasn’t been a surprise hit like The Conjuring or very many strong films at all for that matter.  The Purge: Anarchy and The Sacrament are good enough, but if I’m tallying up the 2014 releases that I’ll probably watch again in the coming years, there’d only be three on the list – Stage Fright, Afflicted and Oculus.

But the good thing is we’ve still got four more months to go, and September and October alone have a lot to offer.  Hit the jump to find out which upcoming horror movies could be worth checking out in our Fall 2014 Horror Preview.

Oscar Beat: Which Awards Contenders Will Emerge from the Fall Film Festival Season?

by     Posted 55 days ago

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Ready or not, the awards season is about to begin.  Every year, Oscar season kicks off with the series of film festivals in late August and early September.  It’s at these festivals—Telluride, Toronto, and Venice—that a hefty number of the year’s Oscar hopefuls debut and begin what they hope will be long and prosperous campaigns.  Four out of the last five Best Picture winners screened at both Telluride and Toronto, and as the festivals are about to start later this week, now felt like a good time to preview the block of awards hopefuls that will be screening since the odds are pretty good that this year’s Best Picture winner will have debuted by mid-September.

Hit the jump for the Fall Film Festival Preview 2014 edition of Oscar Beat.

Allison and Adam Predict the 2014 Primetime Emmy Winners

by     Posted 59 days ago

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It was another fantastic year for television, and the 2014 Emmy nominations mostly captured that (…more or less). But when it comes to winners, the Emmys can be a wily beast, as seen in last year’s bevy of baffling wins (Jeff Daniels for NewsroomBobby Cannavale for Boardwalk Empire, among others).  Expect the expected with the Emmys, usually — unless they go completely off the wall.

This year, I have requested the expertise of Collider’s own Adam Chitwood to assist me with picks, not only because he closely follows the awards circuit year-round, he also has a much better track record than I do for picking awards winners in general.  Hit the jump for our guesses about how the results will play out and why in our 2014 Emmy predictions.  The 66th Primetime Emmy Awards, hosted by Seth Meyers, will air live on NBC Monday, August 25th at 8pm ET/5pm PT.

An Introduction to SHAZAM: What Is Dwayne Johnson’s Superhero Debut All About?

by     Posted 59 days ago

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SHAZAM!  With the recent word that Dwayne Johnson will most likely be playing a major role in an upcoming Warner Brothers. adaptation of the comic character Shazam aka Captain Marvel, now seems like a good time to go over what this comic involves, exactly.  Including who is “The Big Red Cheese”, his arch nemesis Black Adam, and which stories are the best “go-to’s” to learn more about both of these characters.  At present, Johnson says he has yet to decide whether he’ll be the hero or the villain of the picture, but rest assured, he’s certainly built and has the charisma to play either.  Hit the jump learn more about Shazam and the upcoming Shazam movie.

Book to Screen: Why THE GIVER Movie Is Nothing Like Lois Lowry’s Novel

by     Posted 61 days ago

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I’ve covered a lot of young adult book-to-film adaptations over the years, and I’ve always made a point of assessing the film as a standalone entity when writing a formal review – but this is not a formal review.  Initially, this piece was intended to be a rather straightforward book/film comparison, but considering Phillip Noyce’s The Giver bears almost no resemblance to Lois Lowry’s award-winning and beloved source material and suffers severely for it, all there is to discuss are differences and the problems they cause.

Hit the jump to read about what the film version of The Giver did different – or rather, did wrong.  [This article contains spoilers for both the book and the movie.] 

THE INHUMANS: An Introduction to Marvel’s Upcoming Galactic Franchise

by     Posted 67 days ago

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With our exclusive announcement that Marvel plans to move forward with an Inhumans film, now feels like the best time to explain to you who this band of misfits actually is and why they’ll be so important to the Marvel Cinematic Universe moving forward.  In a nutshell, think of Inhumans as a Game of Thrones story with superpowers.  The residents of Attilan, the Inhumans’ hidden city, live in a kingdom far away from humanity.  Ruled by the silent Black Bolt, a king whose voice can literally shatter mountains, the people aren’t so much superheroes as they are a civilization that just happens to be populated with fishmen, women who can control their own hair, and guys with hooves.  Hit the jump for more info on one of Marvel’s next big franchises.

The Films of Andrew Dominik: CHOPPER

by     Posted 67 days ago

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[Although this film is 14 years old, I recognize the possibility that many of you haven’t seen it.  Therefore, there are some slight spoilers below. ]

As promised in last week’s introduction to this brief series of articles, today I take a look at director Andrew Dominik’s debut film Chopper, which was released in 2000.  Based on From The Inside, the autobiography of Mark Brandon Read (aka “Chopper”), the film achieves something quite rare in that it manages to be unflinchingly brutal, warm, and funny in equal measure.  A lot of crime films, especially after Pulp Fiction, have aspired to meld tones like this. But most of them have failed, in large measure because of their self-consciousness.  Chopper isn’t self-conscious.  It doesn’t achieve its alchemy by laying a grouping of desired ingredients out on the table and willing them to collide.  The film is one hundred percent the result of an authentic interest in its subject.  Dominik is so true to his reading of Read’s life that the film reads as an extension of his personality, not a genre checklist.  In particular, there are three moments in the film’s first half that define it as a singular work, and those are what I’ll primarily be focusing on in this piece.

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