Archives for posts with tag: film

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The Empire Strikes Back is the most beloved film in the Star Wars saga. It’s a masterpiece on several levels, and that’s all thanks to some much needed changes from the original scripts.

The first draft was written by Leigh Brackett, who turned in her script to George Lucas just before dying of cancer in March 1978. Lucas didn’t like the direction of her treatment, wrote a new draft of his own, and then hired Lawrence Kasdan to finish the job. The original drafts for the film contain some pretty interesting bits of information, and would have drastically changed the course of the Star Wars universe.

Though there are several great ideas present in the earlier treatments, there are a few puzzling ones as well. I’ve compiled a list of 5 things they thankfully changed, that would have drastically altered, and probably ruined, the final film…

5. Vader Had Pet Gargoyles

Gargoyles

In the original script, Vader lived in a castle, complete with a lava moat, and would have had pet gargoyles. There’s nothing more to say about that, other than… “WHAT?”

Luckily, this idea was quickly thrown away and instead, Vader resides mainly on the Super Star Destroyer called The Executor, his personal flagship.

The post The Empire Strikes Back: 5 Things In The Original Script That Would Have Ruined The Movie appeared first on WhatCulture!.

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We’re in a world where sequels are both the best and worst thing in cinema. As the year moves towards summer audiences are quick to bemoan the high number of films based already existing successes, but mere months later they’re eagerly anticipating the latest Iron Man, Star Trek or X-Men. Talk about flippant.

Even though we crave originality, a sequel is dependable and have in recent years proven to be as strong as the original; The Godfather: Part II and The Empire Strikes Back are no longer the only good sequels. And as time goes by, more money is put into the follow ups the the original and it’s really showing on screen.

Well, in most cases. Sometimes the money won’t make it on screen and you’re left with a damp squib. Nowhere is this better shown than with the special effects. Typically here quality directly correlates to budget, but as with any rule it ends up broken. Here are ten follow ups that for some bizarre reason ended up with visual effects worse than the original.

As you’ll see this isn’t just reserved to CGI. I’mtsha going to be looking at all sorts of effects across the past fifty years. There’s budget cuts and technology misuse galore in this article, as well as some very light spoilers.

Honourable Mention – Indiana Jones And The Kingdom Of The Crystal Skull

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The sequel that immediately comes to mind when you think of shocking special effects has to be the fourth Indiana Jones. Forsaking the original trilogy’s focus on traditional effects, this is CGI overkill in the worst possible manner; there’s painfully enough real sets to hint at a promise of a realistic film.

The thing is, the effects in Raiders, Doom and Crusade were equally as outlandish and unbelievable; extravagant face melting and poor compositing are rife. But while the effects aren’t perfect, the film was just so interesting you didn’t care. The real crime of Crystal Skull was that it was so mundane all you could do was focus on the special effects. Which is much, much worse.

The post 10 Sequels With Visual Effects Inexcusably Worse Than The Original appeared first on WhatCulture!.

Empire Contre Attaque 80 33 G

The Empire. Queue the sweetest theme song in the galaxy, as millions of Stormtroopers, AT-AT Walkers, TIE Fighters, Star Destroyers, and Sith Lords come marching down from the skies to ruin your planet’s day. Don’t even try fighting back. Resistance is futile.

Unless you happen to have a fighting squad of Force-sensitive teenagers lying around with names that begin with “L,” such as Luke, Leia, and, uh, Lando. In that case, strap in and get ready to fly down those Death Star trenches as you attempt to bring down the single most terrifying fascist regime ever witnessed by fictional history, with little more than luck on your side.

Seriously, how could the Empire lose? As a kid, you watch Star Wars and just accept that Skywalker saves the day. At the end of Return of the Jedi, the second Death Star is blown up, the evil Emperor Palpatine is dead, and a redeemed Lord Vader is down and out. All is right in the galaxy again as the multitudes of still-functioning Star Destroyers facing the tiny Rebel Alliance just… go away? As you grow up, cinematic magic begins to sway for logic and you come to the realise that in reality, the Empire would never have been beaten.

In fact, here are 10 incredibly simple ways they could have conquered the galaxy indefinitely…

The post Star Wars: 10 Simple Ways The Empire Could Have Won appeared first on WhatCulture!.

Riddick 3

Science fiction is one of those genres where the potential is only limited by scale and focus. It’s easy to get lost in a sci-fi world full of detail when following a story or character arc (multiple ones, for that matter). But it’s also easy to embroil people in a world or universe that has been around for quite some time, preferably the Riddick franchise.

In February of 2000, Pitch Black was released and was met with positive responses, with some even calling it one of the most wildly entertaining and inventive science fiction films of the generation. The scale was simple on film, but massive in possibilities, and the focus was set squarely on the setting, the character’s struggles, and the enigmatic badass himself, Riddick. Four years later saw the release of The Chronicles of Riddick, which increased the scale but took away some of the focus, becoming a lesser favorite than that of Pitch Black. And ever since the bitter responses, fans have been waiting for nearly ten years for a sequel that brought back the epicness and surreal universe that is the Riddick franchise.

The year of 2013 has seen some wildly entertaining films during the summer quarter, some sequels, others origin stories, and some that were standalone releases that raised the heat to an already hot year for action films. The fourth quarter of 2013 saw the release of the aptly named Riddick, the third entry in the Riddick franchise that fans have been milling over for the past decade. Met with positive responses that haven’t been high for the franchise since Pitch Black, Riddick has been selling the fans exactly what they asked for: the return of one of science fiction’s most hard-nosed badasses.

As a fan of the series (and even a supporter of Chronicles), I was impressed with what David Twohy and Vin Diesel brought to the screen. Riddick was a return of not just Riddick himself, but of the style and attitude of both films prior. It carried over the survival aspect of Pitch Black and the tenacity of Chronicles. In all ways, it was a return to form for the series.

I walked out praising the film for a lot of reasons, and I was pleased with what I saw as a fan. There were things that caught my eye that had me going “Wow, now THAT’s nice”, and “Very clever reference.” For devoted fans, it’s an easter egg hunt for nearly the entire running time, but at the same time something new and fresh to digest.

But, in the end, there was something that also caught my attention that drug the experience down a few notches. It’s forgivable, but still needs to be pointed out in the grand scheme of things.

In this article I will be stating 5 reasons why Riddick lived up to the expectations the fans and I had going for it. Each reason really gave the film its legs and strength, and each one made the overall experience one of the most of thrilling films of 2013 so far, even at the fourth quarter. But I will also be pointing out the 1 problem that stuck itself out like a sore thumb; let it be known that it doesn’t ruin the film, but it does add a blemish that is in desperate need of explanation.

There is a SPOILER warning from this point forward, which gives away some important plot points that will shatter your enjoyment of the film, so skip forward with some discretion. Now, starting off with the 5 reasons why Riddick is great…..

The post Riddick: 5 Elements They Nailed And 1 That Failed appeared first on WhatCulture!.

Tom Hooper Les Mis

Whether we like it or not, the sequel to Man of Steel has been rushed into production with added Batman. For this writer, the first 40-odd minutes of Man of Steel- at least up to the point that our boy learns to fly- were on a level with Richard’s Donner definitive original. But after so much promise, this intriguing reinvention turned into a generic, humourless, boring mess. Still, Henry Cavill was perfectly decent and the recent casting of Ben Affleck as the new Batman was a masterstroke- an opinion not shared by most of the internet.

Of course I’ll give whatever-the-hell-this-Batman/Superman-film-is-called the benefit of the doubt, because let’s face it, what fanboy isn’t excited to finally see The Dark Knight and The Man of Steel on screen together for the first time, Snyder or no Snyder? But this is obviously the first step towards a Justice League movie. The rumours are flying that Affleck may direct that once it comes to fruition, but I don’t think this will be the case. The obvious choice would be Zack Snyder, and I hope this isn’t the case. Man of Steel was certainly his best film, but that isn’t saying much.

DC’s answer to The Avengers will inevitably be huge and make quite a profit whoever directs it. But one of the reasons that Marvel’s huge gamble paid off, apart from the fanboy hype and 3D ticket prices, was the critical acclaim and word-of-mouth that encourages repeat viewings. This was down to a visionary like Joss Whedon and his witty script that clearly understood the potential of this unlikely team and took the whole concept seriously.

If Warner Brothers want their Justice League movie to actually be good as well as successful, they should take a risk- because let’s face it, they can afford to with as sure-fire a hit as Justice League- and hire someone different, someone left-field. And ladies and gentlemen, I propose Tom Hooper, director of Les Miserables and The King’s Speech, is that man. He’s not the kind of director you’d expect to take on a comic-book property, especially one of this scale- but then, everyone said the same when it came to Kenneth Branagh, Bryan Singer, Christopher Nolan, Shane Black and Joss Whedon, and look how their films turned out!

Unfortunately, this seems one-hundred percent unlikely to happen, but one can dream. It seems inevitable it will be Snyder or Affleck directing off of a David Goyer script, but there’s always a chance! So, read on for my explanation as to why Hooper is the perfect choice to helm what will likely be one of the biggest superhero team-ups of all time…

The post 6 Reasons Why Tom Hooper Should Direct The Justice League Movie appeared first on WhatCulture!.

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The post WhatCulture Jobs – Content Producer Vacancy At Newcastle Office appeared first on WhatCulture!.

0 Wicked Witch Of The West

Hollywood, the most powerful film industry in the world, has produced so many female characters with such great potential. Princess Leia. Kathy Selden. Roslyn Taber. Janine Melnitz. Trinity. owyn. April O’Neil. Sylvia Landry. Dr. Zira. The entire leading cast of Bridesmaids. Characters like these have so many excellent qualities.

But through the necessities of mainstream narrative film structure, those characters were given the fate of so many other female characters, even though it wasn’t the primary purpose of their stories-romance.

It is a purpose that so many female characters have to fulfill by the end of movies, even when the characters are kids.

It’s even worse when you almost get to the end of a movie with actual hope that it could be otherwise, but then comes the kiss-I for one was hopeful for Wai Lin the first time I saw Tomorrow Never Dies. To the movie’s credit though, I was more na ve at the time, and although my ability to read women was better then than it is now (wow-on my final revision of this article I just realized the supreme irony of that), it still wasn’t any good.

This kind of thing happens to male characters as well, but it more often perfunctorily happens to female characters. Even when a story isn’t about romance, women are so much more tied in movies to their relationships. Some of these stories are very significant, such as Angela Bassett’s Tina Turner in What’s Love Got to Do with It or Annette Bening’s Carolyn Burnham in American Beauty. But regardless of how good, significant, or even accurate these movies are-and some of them really are great-when there isn’t a variety of other kinds of stories to balance those stories out, there is a problem. Women should just be people with the same amounts of representations available to them as men.

I’m not saying that relationships or other romantic encounters diminish anyone, but there is so much more to female humans than what they go through while dealing with romance. That’s just one category of the human experience. In the case of women, even being “badass” is often just a precursor to romance, a wall that the character puts up only to be eventually taken down by the leading man. Even if the wall isn’t removed, such as with the Black Widow in The Avengers, that character is still arguably in a relationship with some of the eyes in the audience.

I know others have written about many of the things I’ll be addressing in this article and with more complexity, but I think it’s good to remind ourselves what characters we’re cheering for, especially when it comes to our daily interactions with Hollywood, the largest media industry on the planet.

So click “next” for 13 great female characters who are tremendously interesting on their own in many different ways, and don’t need to end up in a romantic encounter by the end of the movie. Not to say that all unromantic female characters are interesting by default, but these characters really are characters to revere.

NOTE:

Margaret Hamilton’s Wicked Witch of the West gets an honorable mention here. Her viciousness and indignation are just awesome, refreshing, and mesmerizing to watch.

The post 13 Great Female Characters In Hollywood Who Weren’t Relegated To Romance appeared first on WhatCulture!.

Troy Sean Bean

Yes, here we are again. After writing the first article, I began thinking about other great actors that I had left out of the list for one reason or another. After a while I realised that there was actually a few. It seems that we sometimes forget how fallible great actors are and are prepared to forget their bad roles.

So here’s another list, but with a condition this time around- no actors from the first list can end up in this list. I know that some on the first list have plenty more that could be set on a pedestal to demonstrate as a bad movie, but this is going to look further afield.

And with that in mind, and a spoiler warning, let us commence!

In no particular order…

7. Judi Dench As Aereon In The Chronicles Of Riddick

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The Chronicles of Riddick is what often happens when you make a sequel from a relatively simple original movie. Pitch Black was a very clever horror movie concept and it worked extremely well. The trouble was that a sequel couldn’t be the same thing all over again, nor could it have the same intimate chemistry the first one enjoyed. So the sequel decided to introduce all sorts of new concepts, including a whole new plethora of races- many of which had names that were, frankly laughable (seriously Furyan? Or Necromongers? Are these truly the best that the writers could think up?) as well as new worlds and a frankly bizarre aesthetic.

For all this exposition to be thrown at the film, the writing would have had to be good for it to seem like a compelling movie. Alas, it is anything but as the movie seems to lurch forward with really slow talking sections between action scenes.

Judi Dench in the movie is not so much good or bad as just plain confusing. I genuinely think that though she puts in an ok performance she is a minus for the movie simply because she doesn’t feel like she belongs there. The Chronicles of Riddick was never going to be a A-grade action film and having someone like Dench in it somehow stops your belief from being suspended. Instead she just reminds you of what dross you are actually watching.

The post 7 More Great Actors That Starred In Awful Movies appeared first on WhatCulture!.

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If you have even the slightest knowledge of the film industry, it’s increasingly apparent that a plethora of upcoming films are remakes of classics. The reasoning is a combination of multiple things too, but mostly stems from our economy which is not improving despite what the media says. We live in age where seeing just one movie at a theater can feel like some luxurious experience after factoring in how damn high prices have skyrocketed. And with your limited funds comes picking and choosing; sequels or remakes of classics you love, or something that you have never heard of that while it may be good, you can’t justify dropping $12 a ticket on.

This has unfortunately resulted in an ongoing death rattle for creativity in mainstream Hollywood. No movie, no matter how high on a pedestal it sits is untouchable from the grubby dollar sighted clutches of a modern facelift. Sometimes they’re admittedly awesome (David Fincher’s The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo) while most are disappointing garbage (cough Total Recall).

They rake in the cash though and aren’t going away, especially considering how many amazing movies there are left currently untouched. This list will detail 10 movies that you just know Hollywood will piss all over, and my highly educated, sometimes humorous predictions on how they’ll be desecrated. Remember, these are about 100 more films out there that should just be left alone too, so this list obviously doesn’t touch upon everything.

The post 10 Horribly Inevitable Remakes That Will Ruin The Originals (And How They’ll Be Ruined) appeared first on WhatCulture!.

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The last few years have seen the return of science fiction cinema in a big way. Not since the early 80 s have there seemingly been so many sci-fi movies released in such a short time. Movies like Avatar have set box office records, and visionary directors such as Christopher Nolan, Alfonso Cuaron, and Guillermo Del Toro have turned to the genre as a way to tell their stories.

Although not as prevalent before about 2009, science fiction has been fairly well represented at the movies ever since the turn of the century, with the Star Wars prequels and The Matrix bringing more attention to the genre.

Even though many of the sci-fi movies released this year have been disappointing either critically or financially, there are many potentially fascinating examples of the genre left to come in the next few months and years.

Alfonso Cuaron’s Gravity has received significant pre-release buzz, celebrated cinematographer Wally Pfister’s directorial debut Transcendence comes out early next year with one of the most interesting plot ideas in quite a while, and Christopher Nolan’s potentially groundbreaking Interstellar looms over almost every movie coming out in 2014. Many other projects are sure to come out over the next few years, hopefully continuing sci-fi’s second golden age.

What constitutes science fiction is up for debate but generally, I would list the prerequisites as being something that either depicts a future society, advanced technology, or uses a technical or scientific idea as a springboard to tell a story.

For this list, movies that contained elements of science fiction, but primarily belonged to a different genre were not considered, which is why no superhero movies appear and great films such as The Prestige, Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind, and The Fountain are not listed even though they are better than many of the movies on here.

20. Pitch Black

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It’s cheap, derivative, uninspired, and certainly did not need an overblown sequel, but Pitch Black is one of the more underrated sci-fi films of the millennium so far.

When a cargo ship carrying the notorious criminal Riddick crashes on an uninhabited world, Vin Diesel’s hulking criminal escapes, much to the chagrin of the crew. However, after the dark secret of the planet is revealed, Riddick must join forces with the other survivors to have a chance at escaping the planet alive.

Pitch Black, while hardly a masterpiece, is a surprisingly clever film that has an unexpected number of ideas for what is essentially a B-movie. Vin Diesel plays the role he was born to as Riddick, a killer who shows no fear, empathy, or emotion, and the bleak landscape of the film sets just the right tone.

Sure, the special effects are pretty poor and there’s nothing particularly original about any aspect of it, but Pitch Black is a well executed, above average horror/action/sci-fi film that is just good enough to crack this list.

The post 20 Greatest Sci-Fi Films Of The 21st Century appeared first on WhatCulture!.

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