Category Archives: Fantasy

Another brilliant Bad Lip Reading for Game of Thrones

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I can’t breath…BLR for president! BLR for President! BLR for President!!

Watch The Green Ruby Pumpkin and know what Halloween is!

It is because films like this that I love Halloween! Directed by CGI animators Miguel Ortega (Jack The Giant Killer, THOR) and Tran Ma (Alice In Wonderland, G.I. Joe) The Ruby Green Pumpkin is a delight in that way that years from now you’ll be asking yourself “remember that one Halloween story…yeah that one. Wasn’t it awesome!” The story is a cleverly woven limerick about a woman/witch who lives in this wondrous world and gives candy to all who come to her door, dressed mind you. She dispenses these goodies from her ruby green pumpkin year after year. The story goes on to show all sorts of folks coming to her door for goodies and dressed in their Halloween best. It’s all pretty cheery until the three boys arrive, now I won’t spoil it for you, but that’s where the Tim Burton light heartedness kinda wanes, but still stays beautiful. My hopes is that every kid in the world gets a chance to see films like this, cause they are just plain good and filled with that level of simple story telling that’s hard to find nowadays.

The Green Ruby Pumpkin is a magical and fun short film that captures the enchantment of Halloween. It was a passion project that was created by two Senior visual effects artists. Miguel Ortega and Tran Ma. This Entire project was shot in the living room. watch the making of HERE

Currently Miguel Ortega and Tran Ma are working on a Lovecraft-esque feature called The Ningyo.

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Description

A 1909 period film about cryptozoology. The search for mythological or unproven creatures. A Faustian tale about loosing oneself in the process of achieving our goals.

A Ponce De Leon type adventure involving deep sea diving and underwater caverns.

Dr. Marlowe, a paleontologist and professor, finds a piece of a map pointing to the place where the Ningyo, the mythical Japanese creature, could be found. The legend claims whomever consumes its flesh will attain remarkable longevity. He presents the project to his peers, who mock and dismiss him as a fraud. He decides to risk everything and go after the Ningyo on his own in hopes to bring to light what could be one of the greatest contributions to science. What he could not anticipate is that, in his search, he is confronted with a choice that puts the very foundations of his morality to the test.

For more information on The Ningyo checkout their facebook website for the latest.

You can see our other visual effects work MONSTER SCULPTER


The Making of The Green Ruby Pumpkin from miguel ortega on Vimeo.

The Green Ruby Pumpkin from miguel ortega on Vimeo.

Will 2014 be the new Season of the Witch

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The answer is yes.. If you’ve been watching any of the new tv shows like Sleepy Hollow, American Horror Story or have heard news of Maleficent or Into The Woods, than you know that Witches are the new Vampires, but how did it get to this point? We were burning them two hundred years ago. How has something so steeped in mystery and misunderstanding become the new face of Hollywood?

This is when I tell you that we at MITNG, in our relentless need to get this kind of information to you, spoke to one of the leading experts in the field of the Occult and Demonology, SORRY….I had promised Craig and them…wait, what? What I meant to say is, that I did some web surfing, in a vague effort, to help you understand these purveyors of magic, just a little bit better and how they have and always will be, ripe for the picking in Hollywood.

As far back as I can remember, the world has always been fascinated by witches. The female witches in particular, represent a level of independence, that most men found threatening and alluring, although they would never admit it. The first record of a witch goes as far back as the Old Testament. Although what I’m about to tell you was supposedly omitted from the Bible years ago, it still stands as one of the first records. The story goes like this…in the beginning when G-d had already created man and he was lonely, he created a woman. Most of us know this woman to be Eve, but did you know there was a prototype? According to Jewish myth, the first woman was a very strong and independent succubus/witch, named Lilith and unlike Eve, Lilith wasn’t created from the rib of Adam, but was made from dirt, filth and sediment and not pure dust, to be exact, but for all intents and purposes, she was the physical manifestation of “his equal”. So when G-d said she had to obey Adam and have kids for him and yadda yadda yadda…Lilith wasn’t having any of it and ran away.

(Via. Gnosis.org)

Adam complained to God: ‘I have been deserted by my helpmeet’ God at once sent the angels Senoy, Sansenoy and Semangelof tolilith-by-DonatelloDrago3 fetch Lilith back. They found her beside the Red Sea, a region abounding in lascivious demons, to whom she bore lilim at the rate of more than one hundred a day. ‘Return to Adam without delay,’ the angels said, `or we will drown you!’ Lilith asked: `How can I return to Adam and live like an honest housewife, after my stay beside the Red Sea?? ‘It will be death to refuse!’ they answered. `How can I die,’ Lilith asked again, `when God has ordered me to take charge of all newborn children: boys up to the eighth day of life, that of circumcision; girls up to the twentieth day. None the less, if ever I see your three names or likenesses displayed in an amulet above a newborn child, I promise to spare it.’ To this they agreed; but God punished Lilith by making one hundred of her demon children perish daily; [5] and if she could not destroy a human infant, because of the angelic amulet, she would spitefully turn against her own. [6]

Whether fact or fiction, it’s a pretty ballsy move, to place a woman in direct defiance of G-d, especially in those days. I like to think the scribes were living vicariously through Lilith, thus they were able to anonymously speak out about their feelings toward the church by making her the embodiment of evil. This incarnation laid the ground work for women to look to her for guidance

Moving on.

For the true historians…forgive me if I jump around a bit. I’m not an expert.

The witch would undergo several manifestations before becoming the “wack-job on a broom stick” version, we know today. I think it’s pretty safe to say that that image of her came along when witch hysteria was taking hold of England. A lot of that had to do with the Black Death (1348-1350). That sickness wiped out millions, so when people began questioning why, many began providing their own answers. This and the Spanish Inquisition of 1478, created fertile ground for the persecution of practices deemed to be Satanic. There were even some who worshiped the same God, who were being persecuted, and had to flee. Whether true witchcraft was even being practiced during those times, I don’t know, but there are reports.

One such report comes from Ireland, Kilkenny to be exact. Dame Alice Kyteler (1280 – later than 1325) was the earliest known person to ever be formerly accused of witchcraft. Her, so called crime, predated the Black Death and the Inquisition, so perhaps she was legit. We may never know, because she skipped town before she could be formally tried, but her gimp…oh that poor bastard, was tortured until he confessed he was a witch and served under Alice. He was burned at the stake. She was also accused of money lending , adultery and murder so there’s a lot going on in this saucy tale. Behold.

The case was brought in 1324 before the then Bishop of Ossory, Richard de Ledrede, an English Franciscan friar. The bishop wrote to the Chancellor of Ireland, Roger Utlagh ( Outlaw ), to have her arrested but this rebounded on him, the Chancellor being her first brother-in-law. In fact de Ledrede himself was jailed by Sir Arnold le Poer, the Seneschal of Kilkenny, her fourth brother-in-law. John Darcy, the Lord Chief Justice traveled to Kilkenny to investigate the events and vindicated the Bishop, who again attempted to have Dame Alice arrested.

After some months of stalemate, one of her servants, Petronella de Meath, was tortured, and confessed to witchcraft, implicating Kyteler. After this, Kyteler was condemned. She fled the country, presumably to the Kingdom of England. She appears no further in contemporary records. The Bishop continued to pursue her lower-class followers, bringing charges of witchcraft against them. Petronella de Meath was flogged and burned at the stake on November 3, 1324. Her daughter apparently joined Kyteler in England. Kyteler’s son William Outlaw was also accused inter alia, of heresy, usury, perjury, adultery, and clericide. After “recanting”, William escaped relatively lightly, being ordered to hear three masses a day for a year and to feed the poor.

This was one of the first European witchcraft cases and followed closely on the election of Pope John XXII (1316–1334), to the Papacy. In 1320, he had witchcraft added to the list of heresies.

Then of course there were the Salem Witch trials of (1692-1693) and we all know how that went down, but I think Salem is  where most American’s formulated their opinions about what witches were and unfortunately, most of those opinions were wrong. With all religion comes paranoia, the Puritans having fled England to practice their faith in the new lands, were all alone in this strange world, so new ideas had to be formed to keep the flock from straying and when anyone is given something precious, especially a child, and that thing promises power, sometimes it’s too good to pass up. Things like knowing the future or beguiling an infatuation, is a time honored tradition and is primarily what witches were used for. This dates back to the Oracles at the Temple of Delphi. Course they didn’t call them witches then, in fact they became useful in swaying political decisions…you see where I’m going? We all see what we want to see, but what the fuck does all this have to do with witches in Hollywood. Nothing…I just thought you might like to know a little history and now for the good stuff.

There are two men, I ordain, for being solely responsible for ushering in the era of the witch into Hollywood and the effects can be felt to this walt-disneyday. Walt Disney (pictured left) and Victor Fleming (lower right). Walt Disney, as you all know, gave animation a new face with films like Snow White,Cinderella and Sleeping Beauty and Victor Fleming directed the one film that canonized the broom and pointy hat, The Wizard of Oz. Of course you can’t mention these artist without mentioning the source material Oz (L.Frank Baum) and…well pretty much every Disney film produced in the late thirties and early forties, The Brother’s Grimm.

Victor Fleming, circa 1933. Courtesy Photofest.  These two “single-handedly”, made witches cool. They gave them a face, some likable some, not so much, but they were always memorable and seemed to be what audiences wanted. Course, no witch film was ever complete back in the days, without a song or two in the film, but films with music in them was what Hollywood was serving up for a very very long time. The witches on film today tend to be a bit more serious. They’ve gotten rid of the striped socks and replaced them with fishnet stockings in most cases and tube socks and sneakers, in others.

In 1964 television brought the cauldron to tv with Bewitched starring Elizabeth Montgomery and Dick York, until March 25, 1972, when the show was cancelled. In the seventies directors touched, ever so lightly, on the witch genre, but at a time when horror was all anyone wanted to see. So we got films like Dario Argento’s “Suspiria” and Daughter’s of Satan (1972). This new look on the craft was exploitative to say the least. Most of these films back then contained young women dancing around a fire naked or being tortured sexually by church inquisitors. No more song and dance and no more yellow brick roads, the witch had a new look or at least appeared to have a new look and it wasn’t all good. That is, until the eighties.

To keep up with the magic, film directors like Ridley Scott and Steven Spielberg, were throwing down, directors needed to reinvent this genre again. Offer up some magic, but with a real story and real consequences. The 80′s saw witch films such as The Witches of Eastwick, Warlock (1989), Spellbinder (1988), The Little Mermaid (1989) and Teen Witch (1989).

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It’s important for you to notice that because these films most certainly involved women, these films could easily be referenced as the state of women at the time the film was made. Witches of Eastwick found three powerful witches (Susan Surandon, CHER and Michelle Pfeiffer) set upon by this demon played by Jack Nicholson. During this time you had films like Working Girl…get it? I don’t know, I was trying to make a connection, but failed miserably. However, the witches in the 80′s are getting sexy again, well…there was never a time when witches weren’t sexy, but you get my meaning. What’s also funny, but obvious, is that most of these films are watched by women.

You see I’ve always said women are the Earth Mother’s. Their ability to create life, connects them “like no other” with the spirit world. Divination, clairvoyance, astrology, incantation, are mostly practiced by women. Sure, there are a few warlocks out there, but most of the problems that are called upon by a witch to cure, usually entails that of a feminine nature. Mind you, this is neither good nor bad, but something I noticed hanging with Wiccan’s ( a pagan religion introduced in 1954) and working at a mineral store, in Orlando Florida. We all want to connect with something higher, it just so happens that higher seems too high at times and sometimes it’s easier to connect with something tangible, that’s not to say witchcraft doesn’t have it’s share of the fantastic, but so does the Bible. We do what works.

So let’s fast forward the chronometer pass the 90′s, past movies like  Hocus Pocus (1993) , Witches (1990, a brilliant film I must say)  and The Craft (1996) to the 2000′,s where we see the rise of the vampire. Stick with me, I am going somewhere with this.

If there was ever a period in time when the witch in Hollywood most certainly saw it’s imminent defeat, it was in the early 2000′s. Films like Queen of the Damned (2002), Day Watch (2006), Let the Right One In (2008), Twilight series, Underworld and True Blood, were all the rage and virtually wiped out any memory that witches even existed. Sure you’d could still find books being written about them, but for the most part Hollywood wasn’t having it, the vampires were too strong. It seemed adult and tween novelist, were doing any and everything to make these bloodsuckers more likeable or sexy. But in 2005-2010ish, a strange thing started to happen on shows like True Blood, the story took a  turn for the whimsy. It began incorporating/crossingover, by having the vampires battling witches. Around that same time the Bill Willingham book FABLES was being considered for adaptation by ABC. A hugely popular book that chronicles the lives of real life fable character’s who had been exiled from their home world. The story’s central character’s are witches from children’s story, given a modern twist of course. So now, nearly a decade later, A shift starts to occur and the witches are slowly coming back.  ABC, unable to secure the rights to FABLES, creates their own version of the story and calls it Once Upon A Time (not to be confused with Once Upon a Time: In Wonderland, but kinda sorta the same) also due out this fall. That show is followed by another fairly-like show Grimm and just like that…they are back…and now, in the year of our Lord 2013, we have shows like American Horror Story: Coven, Sleepy Hollow, Witches of East End, Oz the Great and Powerful, Hansel and Gretel, Disney’s Maleficent (based on the character from Sleeping Beauty), Snow White and The Huntsman, PIXAR’S Frozen, Into the Woods (based on the Broadway musical) so on and so forth.

In hindsight they only took a break for about ten years before reemerging, but this emergence happens to be with great fervor. It’s like something snapped, cause people are loving themselves some witches right now, and that’s fine, they do have a history of doing well in the cinema, but will they be portrayed in the right light? I’m optimistic, especially with the level of writing coming out of the studios these days and rightfully so. They do exist and have existed for thousands of years. They even live near you. No, they aren’t wearing anything special, outside of a five star pendant of quartz wand around their neck, but they are today’s practicing modern witches. I don’t know enough about them to really go depth about what their lifestyle entails, but there’s enough of them in the U.S. alone, to warrant a certain level of respect when portraying them on screen. I’ve visited places like Salem, Mass, Cassadega, Fla and Sedona, Az and I’ve seen the covens and they are good people and are respectable followers of Earth magic.

Alright some of the shows like AHS and Sleepy Hollow do tend to do a good job of not making them completely cheesy and let’s be honest, I don’t think America’s gonna buy into that any more, but there are still some movies/tv shows, that shouldn’t be made, but we will have to wait and see if I’m right. Nevertheless, expect to see a lot of them in the near future cause something tells me they aren’t going away anytime soon.



 

New trailer and banners for The Hobbit ups the visual ante

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It’s interesting when you can base the closing of the year around the release of The Hobbit or, used to be, Harry Potter. Maybe it’s the elves…no I’m positive, it’s the elves or it could be the Celtic/ Druid myths surrounding dragons and wizards. Either way…pale face white people with pointy ears are a shoe in during the holidays. I wonder if the same would work for a Chinese man with pointy ears? Hmmmm…I digress, this will probably be the last trailer before the release of The Hobbit on December 13 2013, a day after my birthday so it makes sense that they, they being Peter Jackson, has crammed so many new images from the film into this trailer, that it almost comes off desperate…especially at the end. That aside, the trailer delves deeper into Legolas’s (Orlando Bloom) and Tauriel’s (Evangeline Lilly) relationship which, quite honestly, I don’t remember any off in the books, but it has been twenty plus years since I’ve read it. The two seem to be in the same lovers conundrum as Eragon and Arwen in The Lord of the Rings. Legolas wants Dat-Ass and Tauriel’s father forbids it…I’m sure there’s more to it than that, but that’s what I gathered from the trailer. The trialer get’s a bit lenghty towards the end, as I mentioned, with this long drawn out semi-reveal of Smaug. We do get to hear Smaug’s voice for the first time which sounds a bit like KHAAAAAAN!!!, but that makes sense considering Benedict Cumberbatch (Star Trek Into Darkness) is voicing the character. Take a look at the trailer below, along with some new banners featuring characters from the film.

The Hobbit stars Martin Freeman, Ian McKellan, John Bell, Jed Brophy, Adam Brown, John Callen, Stephen Fry, Ryan Gage, Mark Hadlow, Peter Hambleton, Stephen Hunter, William Kircher, Sylvester McCoy, Graham McTavish, Michael Mizrahi, James Nesbitt, Dean O’Gorman, Mikael Persbrandt, Ken Stott, and Aidan Turner. The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug opens in 2D, 3D, and HFR 3D on December 13th.

Relativity Media adapting the graphic novel Anomaly for a feature film

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Weeks ago MITNG did a review on this amazing, augmented reality graphic novel, called Anomaly created by software designer Skip Brittenham and comic book writer and illustrator Brian Haberlin, well today we received word that this epic story is being made into a feature length film.

Of course, not everything about this venture is clear yet, but this is what we do know …

Relativity Media (Immortals, The Social Network, Skyline) will be developing and producing a movie based off Anomaly. Joe Roth (Snow White and the Huntsman, Oz: The Great and Powerful) will produce the film and Ed Ricourt (Now You See Me) has signed on to write the script.

If any of you have read this story, you know how well it’s pages translates to film, so for the most part, this should be seamless and because of the augmented reality aspects of the book, I’m guessing 3D Imax may be on the menu for this science fiction masterpiece. We will see. As a fan of the film and book, I’m wishing these guys the best. This will be an excellent film.

Synopsis:

Dishonorably discharged from the Conglomerate’s elite Enforcer Corps, Jon is doing a job too lowly for a robot. He leaps at the chance to go on a peaceful, first contact mission to an untainted world. Playing armed babysitter to Samantha, the daughter of a powerful Conglomerate executive shouldn’t be too hard. What could go wrong?

Everything…

For Jon, it’s a relief to get away – on an easy assignment protecting a couple of do-gooders visiting a peaceful new planet. For Samantha, it’s a mission to change the world. For Jasson, it’s a chance to put his theories to the test.

Being marooned on Anomaly where technology doesn’t work, the terrain is lethal and the creatures even more so, Jon quickly learns he’s not the man he once was. Dark secrets surround the various species that call this world home. Jon’s actions here have the potential to ripple across the void of space, and touch everything in it… Maybe even the Conglomerate…

But when Anomaly sprouts synthetics-eating viruses, flesh-eating mutants and deadly magic, it becomes a race against which form of death will come first. Who will survive? Who will return?

For More info about the film click HERE

ANOMALY Official Website

 

 

Absolutely gorgeous and moving tribute to the cosplayers of Dragon Con 2013

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So I know you’ve seen a lot of cosplay videos from conventions as well as smart ass geek-youtubers interviewing/hurling insults at cosplayers and groping women, for the sake of their ignorant fans…well this is not what this is. This is an outstanding tribute to those who dream of other worlds and once, twice or three times a year, they become the physical manifestation of that idea. I know because I used to cosplay…quite frankly I don’t know why I quite, but watching this video makes me want to do it again.

The footage in the following video comes from the annual Dragon Con held in Atlanta Georgia. In recent years Dragon Con has grown to epic proportions and shows no signs of slowing up.

I won’t say to much more cause you really need to see this…and for those who mock their friends and family for doing what they love….schools in bitches and the cosplay is here to stay!!

Beatdown Boogie’s YouTube Channel

 

Dark Horse’s THE STAR WARS #1 brings to life George Lucas’s first draft

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The premise of George Lucas’sThe Star Wars“, written by J.W Rinzler and illustrated by Mike Mayhew, pretty much follows what we now know as Star Wars, but with a little something different…no force, or at least not in this first issue of the Dark Horse Comic’s release. The “Force”, however, is mentioned in a tongue and cheeky way, take for instance Princess Leia, whom in TSW, is on her way to study abroad on another planet, is told by her father (King Kayos) before she leaves “May the force of others be with you”. This isn’t nitpicking, just interesting.

In this precursor, a man/Jedi by the name Kane Starkiller along with his two sons, Annikan and Deak, have been hiding from the Empire on a distant planet when trouble arrives in the form a Sith (basically the Empires hired guns set upon the remaining Jedi). Kane’s youngest is lost in the scrimmage with the Sith which forces Kane to leave the planet to save his remaining son Annikan. His journey leads him back to his home planet Aquilea.

Meanwhile the Empire is growing in power and guess who’s their leader…Darth Vader. But not the masked Sith you and I have grown to love, but a hulking Ray Fiennes in Schindler’s List on steroids, looking cat. The Empire is nothing like the Nazi inspired group we saw in Star Wars, but more like a republic and less dictator-ish. Course we do get a glimpse of Storm Troopers, but this issue gives us no clue as to whether they are Mandalorian clones. It’s in a particular scene, where the Empire is addressing a crowd of people, that we meet Whitsun, a smuggler, for the first time. Whitesun is figuratively Luke in The New Hope, at least for a few pages…why? Cause in this scene the Empire has grounded all ships as part of their new agenda, all but those reckless pirate vessels that are his only means off the planet. Do the math.

Midway into the comic book we meet our hero, General Luke Skywalker (The Legend), who looks like a heroic cartoon version of George Lucas, I don’t know whether that was on purpose, but it’s definitely obvious. He, as well as other remaining Jedi, live on Aquilea with King Kayos his daughter Leia and wife.

I don’t want to give away everything, but what I’m gathering is that The Star Wars was clearly a more serious story than Star Wars. No Jawas, no Sand People, no crazy cantina scene, just pure politics and hint’s towards this mystical power. The force, in TSW, plays out more like Han Solo‘s “I Know” in Empire, just before being frozen in carbonite. It’s there, but it isn’t, at the same time. I must say, I kinda like it…it’s refreshing in a way that lends itself well to the underground mysticism, that pervaded The New Hope. It wasn’t until everybody and their brother had the force that things just got cheap and kitschy. Although I know it won’t happen, someone need to take this project under their wing and shoot it. Sure it might confuse the fuck out of you at first, but for those of us who can see beyond the Hollywood gloss, it’s worth a shot. The franchise couldn’t get any worse.

Has the Jedi mysticism in Star Wars been lost over the years

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The years have not been kind to the Jedi, a once benevolent group of mystics who occasionally had to do battle with the forces of evil to create balance in the universe. Remember when Star Wars was just about Luke Skywalker, Obi Wan Kenobi, Yoda and Darth Vader? It’s been a very long time since I’ve been able to say those names and actually feel that same level of honor, one might feel, being inducted into a secret society.

This was another one of my random thoughts, I had while slinging hash at my job and thought “hey…maybe there’s others out there who feel the same way”…so I decided to expound on it.

Call me crazy, but when you watch Star Wars: A New Hope, didn’t you get the sense that the Jedi’s were still a bit aloof, even when they were accepted by the Republic. They still seemed nomadic in their ways and very hard to understand at times and like searching for a new Dalai Lama, a Jedi seemed to me to be very…very hard to come by even before the slaughter, but not anymore.

How many Jedi’s does this Star Wars really need?

For me, the answers simple, but for those hellbent on making JEDI-star-wars-jedi-23833947-1024-768money off this franchise, the answers “there can never be too many”. Now with the Star Wars :The Old Republic MMORPG, everyone and their uncle can be a  Jedi, as if in Ben’s time, they were just handing out lightsaber’s  like government cheese.

Perhaps it’s because I haven’t read any of the spin off novels and comic books, except Timothy Zahn’s “Heir To The Empire”, but hasn’t this always been about the movies and not the books?

Sure, I too envision a world of yet unheard of Jedi, all with new and fascinating force skills, and belonging to interesting new races, but one must draw a line between recklessness and tangibility…yes, even in fantasy, this is what makes fantasy great. Isn’t it?

I didn’t need to see the Jedi Council in “The Phantom Menace”. Why couldn’t it have been just another level of the myth, one that we all subscribed to, but didn’t literally have to see? I mean can anyone, outside of the hardcore, name the members of the council or the race they belonged too? I know I can’t.

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This wasn’t the only thing that bothered me, assuming the Jedi were the Templar’s of their time, there was nothing to suggest a monk lifestyle other than the robes they wore, which brings me back to Ben, in the first film. He was unlike any of the so-called Jedi we saw in Episodes I, II and III. He was like the “Oracle” in The Matrix. Simple, careful, always aware of his emotions and above all…humble. Certainly not the order we saw in the prequels with their spacious penthouse view of Coruscant. There’s nothing about the Jedi’s in the new movies that says ancient or mystic. In that way, I could see why something like the Sith would want to destroy them, but I highly doubt George was thinking about this when he embarked upon creating that reheated piece of fodder known as ‘the prequels”. He was just going for flash, forgoing any of the mysticism we became fond of in “A New Hope” and “The Empire Strikes Back” and replacing it with smoke and mirrors. Now everyone has the force, Leia, Han Solo, their kids and all the while, the ones who’ve remained more benevolent, clandestine, and shrouded in secrecy is the Sith.

I will even go as far as saying that “the “Sith” is the last bit of true Star Wars left, ironically enough”.

They are the one’s Hollywood unknowingly have made an “anomaly” in all this mess. We got bit’s and pieces of who they are in every film, but no visit to their planet or meeting with the council or glimpses into what it takes to become one. Again, if you’ve read any of the Dark Horse comics you already know a lot about the Sith, but for the majority of moviegoers, there’s nothing. This is the model the Jedi’s/George Lucas, should’ve followed before he decided to blanket the screen with so many meaningless characters and colorful light sabers. This over saturation made the loss of their kind even more unceremonious than it already was. Not only were thousands of Jedi slain, we only knew the names of only a handful of them.

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What’s real important to understand is that when George Lucas wrote A New Hope, back in the seventies he, as a film student, was deeply into Akira Kurosawa films like “Rashomon”, “Seven Samurai” and “Ran”. He peppered “A New Hope” with all sorts of Japanese inspired aesthetics like Luke and Ben’s Hakama garb and even replaced Samurai katanas with light sabers. The colors white and black, used in the Tao symbol for balance, are also represented throughout the film, demonstrating duality and then there’s Yoda, who was essentially a small green version of Pat Morita from The Karate Kid. Course there’s the blatant Nazi symbolism embraced by the Empire, but I  want to get into that.

What I’m saying is it took Luke Skywalker three films to become a full fledged Jedi. He had to learn how to control his emotions and discipline himself, a fact that was done away with with the introduction of Medichlorian’s in the prequels. The images of Luke doing the handstand in the swamps with Yoda and him taking the shots from his impromptu blast-shield training on the Falcon, are still etched in my mind. Now, no longer is this rigorous training necessary when your born with this ability. Really? Could they have made the Jedi anymore elitists?

Look, for every short coming the Star Wars franchise has faced in the last decade, there are a million more yet to come, but can we at least agree that the franchise has lost that bit (I use that term lightly) of magic that made the original great? No artist, I know, has ever finished a song, painting or script without stepping back several times to look at what he or she has done and asking themselves “It this still me?”, “Is this still inspired?” These are questions, I’m afraid, George never asked himself, instead, as if he had no idea what he’d created two decades ago, he proceeded to go more west with the storyline than east, like he originally intended.

I won’t even ask you if whether approaching Star Wars from A New Hope point of view, is even worth it anymore, but it would be nice if the reigning science fiction/fantasy mutilator J.J. Abrams, would take this into consideration as he begins work on Star Wars Episode VII, but given his track record with Star Trek, I ‘d say don’t count on it and with that I leave you with the immortal words of C3PO…”We’re doomed.”

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Clive Barker’s NIGHTBREED:The Cabal Cut get’s a release date.

nightbreed-cabal-cut

There are several reasons this needed to happen. First, if you never read the Clive Barker book that Nightbreed is based on, Cabal, then you might have been a little perplexed by some of the scenes in the original film. Like when the lead “Boone” (Craig Sheffer) , makes the deal with the huge demon thing beneath Median or at the end when Dr. Decker is resurrected by the priest or what was that one scene about when Boone’s girlfriend is given that sneak peak into where the Nightbreed had came from and the tortures they faced at the hands of man….that was insane. These are some of the questions, I hope, will get answered, cause I’m too damn lazy to read the book at the moment…don’t be sore at me.

The news of the directors cut entitled The Cabal Cut came down from the distributors of the film Scream Factory, but already several people, including Clive Barker are praising the revival.

Via. (More Nightbreed)

“I want to officially announce that the Cabal Cut of Nightbreed is going on to DVD.
“I have no details as yet of the timing of this release, or of the status of extras on the DVD. The company that will be releasing Nightbreed is Scream Factory.
“What I can tell you is that we at Seraphim have been invited to work with Scream Factory to make this release the best possible event. It’s been a long journey to bring Nightbreed to this moment, and I want to make sure that the release is the best document of the movie and its adventures. I will obviously be updating you through facebook on all the developments as they come through to me from Scream Factory, but as it stands I think the Tribes of the Moon should rejoice. This is a triumph for all of your voices, your support and your love. Clive.”

Clive also had this to say about the directors cut…

(Via. Indiewire)

In a statement, Clive Barker said, with all the floweriness of a Clive Barker novel, “I had a dream about the tribes of the moon. They would live in a city called Midian and, though they were monsters of every shape and size, they would be the heroes of a movie called “Nightbreed.”  However, when I made the movie, the studio was not comfortable with this inversion of the classic structure. They wanted the monsters to be simple-minded scare machines, while I wanted them to be the dark side of all of us, mysterious and misunderstood.  Finally, with this new version of “Nightbreed,” which contains over forty five minutes of previously unseen material, my original vision has been realized. Come with me to Midian, the city of monsters. The tribes of the moon await us.”

My hopes and dreams are that director Peter Jackson will grab this dvd and say to himself, “Damn… can you imagine what we could do to a film like this now!!!!”  Something tells me this is just the beginning.

The film is set to release on dvd in 2014

 

The iconic science fiction magazine OMNI is getting a reboot

omni

There were many factors that contributed to my imaginative growth as a child, one of them was my dads monthly subscription to OMNI magazine. The magazine, started by PENTHOUSE magazine mogul Bob Guccione and partner Kathy Keeton in 1978, was so ahead of it’s time that a kid like me could barely get past their, amazing and sometimes sexual cover art, much less the actual stories contained therein.

Years later, I only now realize that, for my dad, it sparked his imagination. He is a skilled artist and would always draw things like space ships and what not, some he copied from that magazine and some he created on his own, but he chose the pulpit instead of art, which when I think back, were actually quite good.

I know for a fact this magazine was a muse for him as well as for millions of American‘s in the early eighties. I lump OMNI magazine in the same category as Heavy Metal magazine, Cracked or National Lampoons, when it comes to cutting edge art and writing. Those books did what some websites have been, unsuccessfully trying to do, with the internet for years…spark a cult following.

I say it was a seventies thing, but what’s to account for so many musician’s and authors nowadays sprinkling bits and pieces of what OMNI started years ago, on album covers or in lyrics or videos? Why now, this undying need to connect with the writings of Arthur C. Clark or Carl Sagen? Is it just nostalgia or is there something missing in our lives? A promise of the future perhaps? A future that fate has yet to deliver on? Well according to The Verge we are about to see.

OMNI is getting a reboot and is bringing on some of the heavy hitters that were responsible for the magazines success. The magazine is also bringing in some new heads like writer/actor Ken Baumann. This is going to be amazing! Read on.

(Via.The VERGE)

Omni’s resurrection comes courtesy of Jeremy Frommer, a collector and businessman who acquired Guccione’s archives earlier this year. Inside a warehouse full of production assets lie thousands of Omni photos, illustrations, and original editions, which Frommer plans to release as prints, books, or collector’s items. But he wasn’t content with mining the past. Instead, he hired longtime science writer Claire Evans as editor of a new online project, described as an “Omni reboot.”

So how did Claire Evans become the captain of this interstellar ship we call the Omni reboot?

Despite being chosen to take the reins of a nigh-canonized publication, Evans’ hiring as editor was largely a happy Claire Evansaccident. The chain of events began in April, when she wrote an effusive piece on Omni for Motherboard. A few weeks later, her editor approached her about investigating the recently resurfaced Omni archives. “As I was interviewing my current employer, Jeremy Frommer, about the collection, he essentially just offered me the job,” she says. “That was a little bit over a month ago.”

Unlike the original publication, OMNI will be a completely digital magazine, living solely in cyberspace, but as to the question that I’m sure is on everybody’s mind…”what about the art?”

Like the original magazine in its final years, the new Omni will live on the web, with weekly updates. It will publish a mixture of new fiction and nonfiction, but it’s also bringing back the art that helped define Omni, publishing old illustrations alongside the stories. That’s partly a pragmatic decision and partly a promotional effort by Frommer, who hopes to introduce his new art collection to a wide audience.

For the first issue, she’s assembled a mix of classic authors from Omni’s heyday with people who regret missing out on its golden era.

If this works and I’m sure it will, it’ll definitely give many science fiction sites a run for it’s money or maybe not, I still think the readers of OMNI were always the late thirty, forty somethings a.k.a people who like to read, but will that be the niche market Claire will target and will it just become another geek site, to keep up with pop culture? These will be questions that Claire will have to think about when considering the time that has passed from the seventies til now. We will just have to see, hopefully the fans and fans of fans, will restore this forward thinking magazine to it’s former grace.

To read the whole article click the jump

THE VERGE

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