Archives for posts with tag: prometheus

district-9-sharlto-copley1

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

pitch-black-002

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!.

pacific-rim-idris-elba

It’s fair to say that things are going pretty… pretty… pretty… (copyright Larry David) well for Idris Elba at the moment. First, the exceptional Luther recently stormed back to our TV screens for a third gripping series and is captivating us once more. Second, Legendary/Warner Bros’ huge blockbuster Pacific Rim – directed by Pan’s Labyrinth and Hellboy visionary, Guillermo del Toro – has just noisily elbowed its way into Cineplexes worldwide and sees Elba playing a role originally slated for Tom Cruise.

Pacific Rim is set in a future where giant monsters have mysteriously risen from the depths of the ocean, and soldiers piloting giant robots are sent to do battle with them. Just read that last sentence again: this film is going to rock harder than a child with ADHD who’s missed his, or her, medication.

It’s by far Elba’s biggest movie to date, a near $200 million production that he carries on his big shoulders. But 2013 doesn’t end there for Elba… let’s not forget he’ll reprise his role as Heimdal in Marvel’s Thor: The Dark World which is released in November. Also out in November, there’s the long-awaited, Oscar tipped biopic Long Walk To Freedom, in which he’ll be stepping into the huge shoes of Nelson Mandela.

Big Driis is an exceptionally watchable actor who has more than paid his dues and is about to reap the lavish rewards. His first roles were the reconstructions on the BBC’s Crimewatch (perfectly illustrating the bigotry which still festers at the heart of both British media and society), the obligatory jobbing actor work on The Bill and an Ab Fab episode where he played a male prostitute named Hilton. Idris Elba has moved from those unremarkable beginnings to: starring in some of the biggest film and tv series, which have put him in the running to be the next 007.

Mr. Elba also has a blossoming under-the-radar music career, having released three EPs and made appearances on albums by Jay Z and Pharoahe Monch. The man is so outrageously talented, and has generated enough goodwill, that I can even forgive him for directing and starring in the video Lover Of The Light by the execrable anti-music machine Mumford And Sons (just typing the name of the band makes me feel as if I’m enunciating an evil incantation). Though his performance in the video certainly deserves an honourable mention;

He’s meticulously amassing an impressive body of work and his glittering success couldn’t happen to a nicer fella. It’s just a massive shame that he’s had to relocate to America to guarantee himself the quality roles he deserves. Clearly Idris’ best work is ahead of him, but here is an examination of 5 of his most awesome performances so far and 5 that, well, weren’t so great as Idris Elba becomes the latest subject of our Friday column…

The post Idris Elba: 5 Awesome Performances And 5 That Sucked appeared first on WhatCulture!.

Pacific Rim (2013) - Poster

Hollywood tends to churn out movie sequels like there’s no tomorrow, but in honesty, how many of these do we actually want to see? For every new Transformers or Paranormal Activity movie, what about those passion projects that absolutely deserve a sequel, but for a multitude of reasons – a poor box office showing, a pre-occupied original cast, and so on – it simply hasn’t gotten off the ground.

Many of these projects have tacitly suggested sequels, others have promised it, while for some, the future is looking rather bleak indeed. The common thread between them is that the world and/or characters created are worth exploring again in a sequel, as long as the original crew can get all of the moving parts working in unison.

It pained me not to include District 9 in this list, but alas, it just barely misses the cut-off. Nevertheless, here are 10 movies from this decade that better f***ing get sequels!

10. Prometheus

Prometheus - Michael Fassbender

The Pitch: Following the events of Prometheus, Dr. Elizabeth Shaw (Noomi Rapace) and beheaded android David (Michael Fassbender) travel to the Engineer homeworld, seeking out answers as to why they wished to wipe humanity out.

Likelihood: The movie, tentatively called “Paradise”, is in the earliest stages of production, with Jack Paglen being hired to write the script in June 2013. Prometheus scribe Damon Lindelof stated that Paradise would “tangentialize even further away from the original Alien”, and smartly, it seems that it would move away from referencing the Alien mythos too much.

Prometheus took over $400 million at the worldwide box office, and Paradise has the co-operation of director Ridley Scott and stars Rapace and Fassbender, so as far as sequels to recent movies go, this is certainly very likely indeed. 8/10

The post 10 Movies From This Decade That Better F***ing Get Sequels appeared first on WhatCulture!.

prometheus_hd_stills_milburn_and_hammerpede

There are a lot of ways that you can screw up a movie, because movies are just begging to be screwed up all the time. The road towards cinematic perfection is long and tough and near-on impossible, and there are many a poisonous element that you might leave lingering within the frames of a motion picture in order to derail it. And usually you won’t notice that it’s there until you’ve finished shooting and the movie is shipped into theatres. It could be a bad performance, some unconvincing dialogue, or it might just come down to the inclusion of a single character…

Yes, sometimes all it takes is a singular character to stop you from enjoying whatever it is you’ve decided to spend a couple of hours of your life watching. Characters so out of place, or annoying, or totally at odds with the rest of the movie, that you can’t believe that the filmmakers decided to include them – surely they noticed that they didn’t fit in properly? Didn’t they realise that they were risking the entire movie when they opted to include them? Apparently not, because tons of these ill-judged creations make it into motion pictures on a frequent basis…

Take these famous movies, for instance, all of which ultimately failed to win us over because they were derailed by the presence of a single character who would have been better left back on the drawing board (or in the incinerator, perhaps)…

The post 10 Famous Movies That Were Derailed By A Single Character appeared first on WhatCulture!.

%d bloggers like this: