Jake’s Cosmos Aller’s Movies Watched During 2019.
Like my book list, I have been keeping a list of movies and TV shows watched during the year. Here is my list of movies watched during 2019.
I saw movies/TV shows during the year. Many of them I saw while flying to and from Asia four times this year – I almost always watch five movies enroute as I can’t sleep very well on planes.
cosmos’s 2019 play listWould love to see what my friends have watched. For the first time I tried to grade the movie/show. I have been binge watching a lot of shows as well as movies of course. Most were English movies, but I did see some Korean movies as well.
For 2019 I hope to see a lot more movies as a megabox theater opened about one mile from my house. It has a great shabu shabu restaurant, will soon have a sauna and a bowling ally. I can see spending a lot of time there! saw Bohemian Rhapsody there on Christmas day.
hope to hear from you regarding your own favorite movies of the year.
Purpose: Movie List
Keep daily track of all movies watched, including title, main actors, and plot synopsis and mini review, include in daily journal and copy to Movie list. Use in conjunction with book read list to keep track of books and movies read and watched. Also plays attended and TV movie events.
Also note when something is well written or produced and lesions I can learn for my own writing projects, and continue to write fan boy stories and alternative endings.. This year watch more Korean movies and TV and occasional Spanish or Bollywood movies as well as usual mix of SF, Thrillers, and comedies. Diversity the list a bit.
best movies of the year for me were
Godzilla Kings of the Monsters
Avengers End Game
Avengers infinity End
SPider Man Coming Home
A Wrinkle in Time 2018 version
best series for me were
Night flyer series b
War of the Worlds
Kim’s connivence Netflix Korean drama
another life Netflix drama
stranger things season three
discover season two
Enterprise -finished series
rim of the world Netflix original drama
I Island Netflix
A series of unfortunate Events (Nextfix)
Aquarman (theater) B
49 Days Korean Movie B
Dr Who Shada YS B
Alien Code YS B
Doomsday Device YS B
Genesis YS D
Point B YS B
Memories of Alhambra Korean SF series B
Glass in theater C
Winter Kills YS C -disappointing despite great cast
Heist 2001 version YS B
Curse of the Golden Flower YS
HG Wells Men in The Moon YS A-1
The Rift YS
Narnia Voyage of the Dawn Treader YS B
Operation Chromite YS B
The Assassin YS C did not finish
Chuyang YS B
The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo YS A
The Snows of Kilimanjaraco c
Justice League b
The Ghost and the Darkness b
The A Team b
Jack Reacher, Never Go Back b
Night flyer series b
War of the Worlds
Agatha Christie – And then there were None
Kim’s connivence Netflix Korean drama
another life Netflix drama
stranger things season three
discover season two
Enterprise -finished series
rim of the world Netflix original drama
I Island Netflix
Better Call Saul
Godzilla Kings of the Monsters
Avengers End Game
Avengers infinity End
SPider Man Coming Home
BatMan First Knight Arises
Sense Netflix Series
A Wrinkle in Time 2018 version
A wrinkle in time 2003 version (earlier)
A wrinkle in Time OSF 2016
Lost In Space season two
Jurasic Park Lost Lost World
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Joker (2019 film) poster.jpg
Theatrical release poster
Directed by Todd Phillips
Emma Tillinger Koskoff
Based on Characters
by DC Comics
Starring Joaquin Phoenix
Music by Hildur Guðnadóttir
Cinematography Lawrence Sher
Edited by Jeff Groth
Warner Bros. Pictures
Village Roadshow Pictures
Distributed by Warner Bros. Pictures
August 31, 2019 (Venice)
October 4, 2019 (United States)
Country United States
Budget $55–70 million
Box office $1.063 billion
Joker is a 2019 American psychological thriller film directed and produced by Todd Phillips, who co-wrote the screenplay with Scott Silver. The film, based on DC Comics characters, stars Joaquin Phoenix as the Joker. Joker provides a possible origin story for the character; set in 1981, it follows Arthur Fleck, a failed stand-up comedian whose descent into insanity and nihilism inspires a violent counter-cultural revolution against the wealthy in a decaying Gotham City. Robert De Niro, Zazie Beetz, Frances Conroy, Brett Cullen, Glenn Fleshler, Bill Camp, Shea Whigham, and Marc Maron appear in supporting roles. Joker was produced by Warner Bros. Pictures, DC Films, and Joint Effort, in association with Bron Creative and Village Roadshow Pictures, and distributed by Warner Bros.Phillips conceived Joker in 2016 and wrote the script with Silver throughout 2017. The two were inspired by 1970s character studies and the films of Martin Scorsese (particularly Taxi Driver and The King of Comedy), who was initially attached to the project as a producer. The graphic novel Batman: The Killing Joke (1988) was the basis for the premise, but Phillips and Silver otherwise did not look to specific comics for inspiration. Phoenix became attached in February 2018 and was cast that July, while the majority of the cast signed on by August. Principal photography took place in New York City, Jersey City, and Newark, from September to December 2018. Joker is the first live-action theatrical Batman film to receive an R-rating from the Motion Picture Association of America, due to its violent and disturbing content.
Joker premiered at the 76th Venice International Film Festival on August 31, 2019, where it won the Golden Lion, and was released in the United States on October 4, 2019. The film polarized critics; while Phoenix’s performance, Phillips’ direction, musical score, cinematography and production values were praised, the dark tone, portrayal of mental illness, and handling of violence divided responses. Joker also generated concerns of inspiring real-world violence; the movie theater where the 2012 Aurora, Colorado mass shooting occurred during a screening of The Dark Knight Rises refused to show it. Despite this, the film became a major box office success, setting records for an October release. Joker has grossed over $1 billion, making it the first R-rated film to pass the billion-dollar mark at the worldwide box office, the seventh-highest-grossing film of 2019, and the 33rd-highest-grossing film of all time. At the 77th Golden Globe Awards, the film received four nominations, including Best Motion Picture – Drama.
5.1.1 Security concerns
5.2 Home media
6.1 Box office
6.2 Critical response
6.3 Industry response
6.4 Social commentary
10 External links
In 1981, party clown, social outsider and aspiring stand-up comedian Arthur Fleck lives with his mother, Penny, in Gotham City. Gotham’s class society is rife with crime and unemployment, leaving segments of the population disenfranchised and impoverished. Arthur suffers from a medical disorder that causes him to laugh at inappropriate times, and depends on social services for medication. After a gang of delinquents attacks Arthur in an alley, his co-worker, Randall, gives him a gun for protection. Arthur meets his neighbor, single mother Sophie Dumond, and invites her to his upcoming stand-up comedy show at a nightclub.
While entertaining at a children’s hospital, Arthur’s gun falls out of his pocket. Randall lies that Arthur bought the gun himself and Arthur is fired by his agent. On the subway, still in his clown makeup, Arthur is beaten by three drunken Wayne Enterprises businessmen who were harassing a female passenger; he shoots two in self-defense and executes the third. The murders are condemned by billionaire mayoral candidate Thomas Wayne, who labels those envious of more successful people as “clowns”. Demonstrations against Gotham’s rich begin, with protesters donning clown masks in Arthur’s image. Funding cuts shutter the social service program, leaving Arthur without medication.
Arthur has difficulty delivering jokes for his comedy routine, but nevertheless, receives a standing ovation from the audience. After a date with Sophie, Arthur returns home and intercepts a letter written by Penny to Thomas Wayne, alleging that he is Thomas’s illegitimate son, and immediately berates his mother for hiding the truth. At Wayne Manor, Arthur talks to Thomas’s young son, Bruce, but flees after a scuffle with butler Alfred Pennyworth. Following a visit from two Gotham City Police Department detectives investigating Arthur’s involvement in the train murders, Penny suffers a stroke and is hospitalized. While Arthur stays with his mother in an emergency room, his childhood idol, talk show host Murray Franklin, mocks Arthur on TV by showing clips from the comedy routine on his show.
At a public event, Arthur confronts Thomas, who tells him that Penny is delusional and not his biological mother, and Arthur begins to laugh before getting punched by Thomas. In denial, Arthur visits Arkham State Hospital and steals Penny’s case file; the file says Penny adopted Arthur as a baby and allowed her abusive boyfriend to harm them both. However, Penny alleged that Thomas used his influence to fabricate the adoption and commit her to the asylum to hide their affair. Distraught, Arthur returns home and enters Sophie’s apartment unannounced. Frightened, Sophie tells him to leave; their previous encounters were apparently delusions. The following day, Arthur goes to the hospital and kills Penny, suffocating her with a pillow.
Arthur is invited to appear on Murray’s show due to the unexpected popularity of his comedy routine’s clips. As he prepares, Arthur is visited by Randall and fellow ex-colleague Gary. Arthur murders Randall for revenge, but leaves Gary unharmed for treating him well in the past. En route to the studio, Arthur is pursued by the two detectives onto a train filled with some of the clown protesters. One detective accidentally shoots a protester and incites a riot, allowing Arthur to escape.
Before the show goes live, Arthur requests that Murray introduce him as Joker, a reference to Murray’s previous mockery. Arthur walks out to applause, but the mood quickly changes when he tells morbid jokes, confesses to be the killer from the train murders, and rants about how society abandons and harasses the disenfranchised. Arthur then fatally shoots Murray and is arrested as riots break out across all of Gotham. One rioter corners the Wayne family in an alley and murders Thomas and his wife Martha, sparing Bruce.[a] Arthur watches the city go up in chaos from the window of the police car and laughs in satisfaction. Rioters in an ambulance crash into the police car and free Arthur; he dances before the crowd and smears the blood on his face into a smile. At Arkham, Arthur laughs to himself about a joke and tells his psychiatrist she would not understand it. He runs from orderlies, leaving a trail of bloodied footprints.
Joaquin Phoenix as Arthur Fleck / Joker:
A mentally ill, impoverished stand-up comedian disregarded by society, whose history of abuse causes him to become a nihilistic criminal. Phoenix had been interested in a low-budget “character study” of a comic book character, and said the film “feels unique, it is its own world in some ways, and maybe […] It might as well be the thing that scares you the most.” Phoenix lost 52 pounds (24 kg) in preparation, and based his laugh on “videos of people suffering from pathological laughter.” He also sought to portray a character who audiences could not identify with and did not look to previous Joker actors for inspiration; instead, he read a book about political assassinations so he could understand killers and motivations. Phoenix believes that Fleck is the actual Joker; however, director Todd Phillips said that he intentionally left it ambiguous as to whether Arthur becomes the actual Joker as seen in traditional Batman stories or inspires a separate character.
Robert De Niro as Murray Franklin:
A talk show host who plays a role in Arthur’s downfall. De Niro said his role in Joker pays homage to his character from The King of Comedy (1983), Rupert Pupkin, who is a comedian obsessed with a talk-show host.
Zazie Beetz as Sophie Dumond:
A cynical single mother and Arthur’s love interest. Beetz, a “huge fan” of Phoenix, said that it was “an honor” to co-star with him, and that she learned a lot working with him on set.
Frances Conroy as Penny Fleck: Arthur’s mentally and physically ill mother, who formerly worked for Thomas Wayne. Hannah Gross portrays a young Penny.
Additionally, Brett Cullen plays Thomas Wayne, a billionaire philanthropist running for mayor of Gotham. Unlike in the comics, Thomas plays a role in the Joker’s origins and is less sympathetic than traditional incarnations. Alec Baldwin was initially cast in the role but dropped out due to scheduling conflicts. Douglas Hodge plays Alfred Pennyworth, the butler and caretaker of the Wayne family, and Dante Pereira-Olson plays Bruce Wayne, Thomas’s son, who becomes the Joker’s archenemy Batman as an adult.
Additional cast members include: Glenn Fleshler and Leigh Gill as Randall and Gary, Arthur’s clown co-workers; Bill Camp and Shea Whigham as two detectives in the Gotham City Police Department; Marc Maron as Gene Ufland, a producer on Franklin’s show; Josh Pais as Hoyt Vaughn, Arthur’s agent; Brian Tyree Henry as a clerk at Arkham State Hospital; Ben Warheit as a Wall Street banker who gets murdered by Arthur on a subway platform; Gary Gulman as a comedian who performs his act at the restaurant before Arthur does; and Bryan Callen as Javier, a co-worker of Arthur. Justin Theroux has an uncredited cameo as a celebrity guest on Franklin’s show.
Joker director Todd Phillips in 2016
Between 2014 and 2015, Joaquin Phoenix expressed interest in acting in a low-budget “character study” type of film about a comic book villain, like the DC Comics character Joker. Phoenix had previously declined to act in the Marvel Cinematic Universe because he would have been required to play the roles, such as the Hulk and Doctor Strange, in multiple films. He did not believe his idea for a film should cover the Joker, as he thought the character had been depicted in a similar way before, and tried to think of a different one. Phoenix’s agent suggested setting up a meeting with Warner Bros., but he declined. Similarly, Todd Phillips had been offered to direct comic-based films a number of times, but declined because he thought they were “loud” and did not interest him. According to Phillips, Joker was created from his idea to create a different, more grounded comic book film. He was attracted to the Joker because he did not think there was a definitive portrayal of the character, which he knew would provide considerable creative freedom.
Phillips pitched the idea for Joker to Warner Bros. after his film War Dogs premiered in August 2016. Prior to War Dogs, Phillips was mostly known for his comedy films, such as Road Trip (2000), Old School (2003), and The Hangover (2009); War Dogs marked a venture into more unsettling territory. During the premiere, Phillips realized “War Dogs wasn’t going to set the world on fire and I was thinking, ‘What do people really want to see?'” He proposed that DC Films differentiate its slate from the competing Marvel Studios’ by producing low-budget, standalone films. After the successful release of Wonder Woman (2017), DC Films decided to deemphasize the shared nature of its DC-based film franchise, the DC Extended Universe (DCEU). In August 2017, Warner Bros. and DC Films revealed plans for the film, with Phillips directing and co-writing with Scott Silver, and Martin Scorsese set to co-produce with Phillips.
According to Kim Masters and Borys Kit of The Hollywood Reporter, Jared Leto, who portrayed the Joker in the DCEU, was displeased by the existence of a project separate from his interpretation. In October 2019, Masters reported that Leto “felt ‘alienated and upset'” when he learned that Warner Bros.—which had promised him a standalone DCEU Joker film—let Phillips proceed with Joker, going as far as to ask his music manager Irving Azoff to get the project canceled. Masters added that Leto’s irritation was what caused him to end his association with Creative Artists Agency (CAA), as he believed “his agents should have told him about the Phillips project earlier and fought harder for his version of Joker.” However, sources associated with Leto deny that he attempted to get Joker canceled and left CAA because of it.
Warner Bros. pushed for Phillips to cast Leonardo DiCaprio as the Joker, hoping to use his frequent collaborator Scorsese’s involvement to attract him. However, Phillips said that Phoenix was the only actor he considered, and that he and Silver wrote the script with Phoenix in mind, “The goal was never to introduce Joaquin Phoenix into the comic book movie universe. The goal was to introduce comic book movies into the Joaquin Phoenix universe.” Phoenix said when he learned of the film, he became excited because it was the kind he was looking to make, describing it as unique and stating it did not feel like a typical “studio movie.” It took him some time to commit to the role, as it intimidated him and he said “oftentimes, in these movies, we have these simplified, reductive archetypes, and that allows for the audience to be distant from the character, just like we would do in real life, where it’s easy to label somebody as evil, and therefore say, ‘Well, I’m not that.'”
It was a yearlong process from when we finished the script just to get the new people on board with this vision, because I pitched it to an entirely different team than made it. There were emails about: ‘You realize we sell Joker pajamas at Target.’ There were a zillion hurdles, and you just sort of had to navigate those one at a time […] At the time, I would curse them in my head every day. But then I have to put it in perspective and go, ‘They’re pretty bold that they did this.’
– Todd Phillips
Phillips and Silver wrote Joker throughout 2017, and the writing process took about a year. According to producer Emma Tillinger Koskoff, it took some time to get approval for the script from Warner Bros., partly because of concerns over the content. Similarly, Phillips commented that there were “a zillion hurdles” during the year-long writing process due to the visibility of the character. Phillips said that while the script’s themes may reflect modern society, the film was not intended to be political. While the Joker had appeared in several films before, Phillips thought it was possible to produce a new story featuring the character. “It’s just another interpretation, like people do interpretations of Macbeth,” he told The New York Times.
The script draws inspiration from Scorsese films such as Taxi Driver (1976), Raging Bull (1980), and The King of Comedy (1983), as well as Phillips’ Hangover Trilogy. Other films Phillips has cited as inspiration include character studies released in the 1970s—such as Serpico (1973) and One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest (1975)—the silent film The Man Who Laughs (1928), and several musicals. Phillips said that aside from the tone, he did not consider Joker that different from his previous work, such as his Hangover films. While the film’s premise was inspired by Alan Moore and Brian Bolland’s graphic novel Batman: The Killing Joke (1988), which depicts the Joker as a failed stand-up comedian, Phillips said it does not “follow anything from the comic books… That’s what was interesting to me. We’re not even doing Joker, but the story of becoming Joker.” Phillips later clarified that he meant they did not look to a specific comic for inspiration, but rather “picked and chose what we liked” from the character’s history.
Phillips and Silver found the most common Joker origin story, in which the character is disfigured after falling into a vat of acid, too unrealistic. Instead, they used certain elements of the Joker lore to produce an original story, which Phillips wanted to feel as authentic as possible. Because the Joker does not have a definitive origin story in the comics, Phillips and Silver were given considerable creative freedom and “pushed each other every day to come up with something totally insane.” However, they did try to retain the ambiguous “multiple choice” nature of the Joker’s past by positioning the character as an unreliable narrator—with entire storylines simply being his delusions—and left what mental illnesses he suffers from unclear. As such, Phillips said the entire film is open to interpretation. One segment that has been confirmed to be real, according to Phillips in an interview, was Arthur’s appearance on Murray Franklin’s show, as the original intention was to cut to Sophie who is watching him on her TV just to show the audience she is still alive, but it was decided it would disrupt the narrative which was to see everything from Arthur’s point of view.
Following the disappointing critical and financial performance of Justice League (2017), in January 2018 Walter Hamada replaced Jon Berg as the head of DC-based film production at Warner Bros. Hamada sorted through the various DC films in development, canceling some while advancing work on others; the Joker film was set to begin filming in late 2018 with a small budget of $55 million. Masters reported that Warner Bros. was reluctant to let Joker move forward, and gave it a small budget in an effort to dissuade Phillips. By June, Robert De Niro was under consideration for a supporting role in the film. The deal with Phoenix was finalized in July 2018, after four months of persuasion from Phillips. Immediately afterwards, Warner Bros. officially green-lit the film, titled it Joker, and gave it an October 4, 2019, release date. Warner Bros. described the film as “an exploration of a man disregarded by society [that] is not only a gritty character study, but also a broader cautionary tale.”
Scorsese’s longtime associate Koskoff joined to produce, although Scorsese left his producing duties due to other obligations. Scorsese considered serving as an executive producer, but was preoccupied with his film The Irishman. It was also confirmed that the film would have no effect on Leto’s Joker and would be the first in a new series of DC films unrelated to the DCEU. In July, Zazie Beetz was cast in a supporting role, and De Niro entered negotiations in August. Frances McDormand declined an offer to portray the mother of the Joker, and Frances Conroy was cast. At the end of July, Marc Maron, who had recently finished filming the third season of the web television series GLOW, and Bryan Callen joined the cast. Alec Baldwin was cast as Thomas Wayne on August 27, but dropped out two days later due to scheduling conflicts.
A corrugated silver metal subway train sits with its doors open in a station. Its rollsign reads “0 Local / To Old Gotham all times / Downtown & Tricorner”.
A New York City Subway C train with a rollsign for the fictional 0 train left over from filming for Joker
Principal photography commenced in September 2018 in New York City,[b] under the working title Romeo. Shortly after filming began, De Niro, Brett Cullen, Shea Whigham, Glenn Fleshler, Bill Camp, Josh Pais, and Douglas Hodge were announced to have joined the film, with Cullen replacing Baldwin. Bradley Cooper joined the film as a producer, and the director of photography was Lawrence Sher, both of whom Phillips had previously collaborated with. On September 22, a scene depicting a violent protest filmed at the Church Avenue station in Kensington, Brooklyn, although the station was modified to look like the Bedford Park Boulevard station in the Bronx. Filming of violent scenes also took place at the abandoned lower platform of the Ninth Avenue station in Sunset Park, Brooklyn.
According to Beetz, Phillips rewrote the entire script during production; because Phoenix lost so much weight for the film, there would not be an opportunity for reshoots. She recalled, “we would go into Todd’s trailer and write the scene for the night and then do it. During hair and makeup we’d memorize those lines and then do them and then we’d reshoot that three weeks later.” Phillips recalled Phoenix sometimes walked off-set during filming because he lost self-control and needed to compose himself—to the confusion of other actors, who felt they had done something wrong. De Niro was one of the few Phoenix never walked out on, and De Niro said he was “very intense in what he was doing, as it should be, as he should be.”
Filming in Jersey City started on September 30 and shut down Newark Avenue, while filming in November, starting on November 9, shut down Kennedy Boulevard. Filming in Newark began on October 13 and lasted until October 16. Shortly before the Newark filming, SAG-AFTRA received a complaint that extras were locked in subway cars for more than three hours during filming in Brooklyn, a break violation. However, the issue was quickly resolved after a representative visited the set. That month, Dante Pereira-Olson joined the cast as a young Bruce Wayne. Whigham said towards the end of October the film was in “the middle” of production, adding that it was an “intense” and “incredible” experience. By mid-November, filming had moved back to New York. Filming wrapped on December 3, 2018, with Phillips posting a picture on his Instagram feed later in the month to commemorate the occasion.
Phillips confirmed he was in the process of editing Joker in March 2019. At CinemaCon the following month, he stated the film was “still taking shape” and was difficult to discuss, as he hoped to maintain secrecy. Phillips also stated that most reports surrounding the film were inaccurate, which he felt was because it is “an origin story about a character that doesn’t have a definitive origin.” Brian Tyree Henry was also confirmed to have a role in the film. The visual effects were provided by Scanline VFX and Shade VFX and supervised by Matthew Giampa and Bryan Godwin, with Erwin Rivera serving as the overall supervisor.
In August 2018, Hildur Guðnadóttir was hired to compose the film’s score. Guðnadóttir began writing music after reading the script and meeting with Phillips, who “had a lot of strong ideas” about how he thought the score should sound. She worked on the Joker score alongside the score for the drama miniseries Chernobyl; Guðnadóttir said switching between the two was challenging because the scores were so different. Additionally, the film features the songs “That’s Life”, “Send In the Clowns”, and “Rock and Roll Part 2”. The use of “Rock and Roll Part 2” generated controversy when it was reported that its singer Gary Glitter (a convicted sex offender) would receive royalties, but it was later confirmed he would not. The score was released on October 2, 2019 by WaterTower Music.
The film’s final budget was $55–70 million, considered by The Hollywood Reporter “a fraction” of the cost of a typical comic book-based film. In comparison, the previous villain-centric DC film, Suicide Squad (2016), cost $175 million. $25 million of Joker’s budget was covered by the Toronto-based financing company Creative Wealth Media, while Village Roadshow Pictures and Bron Studios each contributed to 25% of it. Joker was also the first live-action theatrical film in the Batman film franchise to receive an R-rating from the Motion Picture Association of America, due to “strong bloody violence, disturbing behavior, language, and brief sexual images.” In the United Kingdom, the BBFC gave the film a 15 certificate.
Phillips has promoted the film by posting set photos on his Instagram feed. On September 21, 2018, he released test footage of Phoenix in-costume as the Joker, with “Laughing” by The Guess Who accompanying the footage. At CinemaCon on April 2, 2019, Phillips unveiled the first trailer for the film, which was released online the following day. The trailer, prominently featuring the song “Smile” performed by Jimmy Durante, generated positive responses, with some commentators comparing it to Taxi Driver and Requiem for a Dream and praising Phoenix’s performance. Writers described the trailer as dark and gritty, with ComicBook.com’s Jenna Anderson feeling it appeared more like a psychological thriller than a comic book film. Mark Hamill, who has voiced the Joker since the 1992 cartoon Batman: The Animated Series, expressed enthusiasm in a Twitter post. Conversely, io9’s Germain Lussier said the trailer revealed too little and that it was too similar to photos Phillips posted on Instagram. While he still believed it exhibited potential, Lussier overall thought the trailer was not “a home run.” The trailer received over eight million views in the first few hours of release.
On August 25, 2019, Phillips released six brief teasers that contained flashes of writing, revealing the second trailer would be released on August 28. Filmmaker Kevin Smith commended the trailer, stating he thought the film “would still work even if [DC Comics] didn’t exist” and praising its uniqueness. Overall, Deadline Hollywood estimated that Warner Bros. spent $120 million on promotion and advertisements.
Joaquin Phoenix (left) at the 76th Venice International Film Festival, where Joker premiered.
Joker premiered at the 76th Venice International Film Festival on August 31, 2019, where it received an eight-minute standing ovation and won the Golden Lion award. It also screened at the Toronto International Film Festival on September 9, 2019. The film was released theatrically by Warner Bros. Pictures on October 4, 2019 in the United States, and a day earlier in Australia and several other international markets.
On September 18, 2019, the United States Army distributed an email warning service members of potential violence at theaters screening the film and noting the Joker character’s popularity among the incel community. A separate memo revealed the Army received “credible” information from Texas law enforcement “regarding the targeting of an unknown movie theater during the release.” However, according to Deadline Hollywood, the FBI and the United States Department of Homeland Security found no credible threats surrounding the release of the film.
In an interview with TheWrap, Phillips expressed surprise at the backlash, stating he thought “it’s because outrage is a commodity” and calling critics of the film “far-left”. Phoenix walked out of an interview by The Telegraph when asked if the film could inspire mass shooters. He later returned to finish the interview, but did not answer the question. Following this, journalists were disinvited from the premiere at TCL Chinese Theatre, with only photographers being allowed to interact with the filmmakers and cast on the carpet. In a statement to Variety, Warner Bros. said that “A lot has been said about Joker, and we just feel it’s time for people to see the film.”
The film did not play at the Aurora, Colorado movie theater where the 2012 mass shooting occurred during a screening of The Dark Knight Rises. Three families of victims, as well as the mother of a witness, signed a letter to Warner Bros. with the request. Additionally, Landmark Theaters has prohibited moviegoers from wearing Joker costumes during its run, while the Los Angeles and New York City Police Departments increased police visibility at area theaters, though they did not receive “any specific threat.”
Joker was released on Digital HD on December 17, 2019, and will be released on DVD, Blu-ray and Ultra HD Blu-ray on January 7, 2020. It will be available on HBO Max when it launches in 2020.
As of December 23, 2019, Joker has grossed $333.5 million in the United States and Canada, and $729.5 million in other territories, for a worldwide total of $1.063 billion. It is the seventh-highest-grossing film of 2019 and the highest-grossing R-rated film of all time, as well as the first R-rated film to pass the billion-dollar mark. In terms of budget-to-gross ratio, Joker is also the most profitable film based on a comic book, due to its small budget and little decline in week-to-week grosses during its theatrical run. Deadline Hollywood estimated it would turn a profit of about $464 million when factoring together all expenses and revenues.
In August 2019, BoxOffice magazine analyst Shawn Robbins wrote that he expected Joker to gross $60–90 million during its opening weekend in North America. Following the film’s premiere, BoxOffice predicted Joker could open to $70–95 million domestically. Later updating to $85–105 million, Robbins suggested it could become the first October release to open to over $100 million, and surpass the record set by Venom in 2018. However, Comscore’s senior media analyst Paul Dergarabedian thought the film would open closer to $50 million because it is not a “typical comic-book movie.” Three weeks prior to its release, official industry tracking projected the film would debut to $65–80 million, with some estimates going as high as $90 million. The week of its release, Atom Tickets announced pre-sale totals for the film were outpacing those of Venom and It Chapter Two ($91.1 million debut), and that Joker was its second-bestselling R-rated film of 2019 behind John Wick: Chapter 3 – Parabellum.
Joker opened in 4,374 theaters in North America and made $39.9 million on its first day, including $13.3 million from Thursday night previews, besting Venom’s respective October records. It went on to break Venom’s record for the biggest October opening, finishing the weekend with a domestic total of $96.2 million. The film set career records for Phoenix, Phillips, and De Niro, and was the fourth-largest debut for an R-rated film of all-time. It was also Warner Bros.’ biggest domestic opening in two years. In its second weekend the film fell just 41.8% to $55.9 million, remaining in first and marking the best second-weekend October total (besting Gravity’s $43.1 million in 2013). It made $29.2 million in its third weekend and $19.2 million in its fourth, finishing second behind Maleficent: Mistress of Evil both times.
Worldwide, the film was projected to debut to around $155 million, including $75 million from 73 overseas territories. It made $5.4 million from four countries on its first day and $18.7 million from 47 in its second, for a two-day total of $24.6 million. It went on to greatly exceed expectations, making $140.5 million from overseas territories and a total $234 million worldwide. Its largest markets were South Korea (a Warner Bros. record $16.3 million), the United Kingdom ($14.8 million), Mexico ($13.1 million) and Japan ($7 million). With this, it became the biggest worldwide opening for an October film. During its second weekend, the film made an additional $125.7 million worldwide, and $77.9 million in its third. By this point, industry analysts expected Joker to become the highest-grossing R-rated film of all time, with some suggesting that it could finish its run with over $1 billion. The film became the highest-grossing R-rated film in its fourth weekend, during which it grossed $47.8 million overseas, and passed the billion-dollar mark about a month into its theatrical release.
Joaquin Phoenix (pictured in 2018) received universal critical acclaim for his performance as the Joker, a performance cited as one of the best of his career.
On review aggregator website Rotten Tomatoes, the film holds an approval rating of 69% based on 526 reviews, with an average rating of 7.26/10. The site’s critical consensus reads, “Joker gives its infamous central character a chillingly plausible origin story that serves as a brilliant showcase for its star – and a dark evolution for comics-inspired cinema.” Metacritic, which uses a weighted average, assigned the film a score of 59 out of 100 based on 58 critics, indicating “mixed or average reviews.” Audiences polled by CinemaScore gave the film an average grade of “B+” on an A+ to F scale, while those at PostTrak gave it an overall positive score of 84% (with an average 4 out of 5 stars) and a 60% “definite recommend.”
Mark Kermode of The Observer rated the film 4 out of 5 stars, stating that, “Joker has an ace card in the form of Joaquin Phoenix’s mesmerisingly physical portrayal of a man who would be king.” Writing for IGN, Jim Vejvoda gave Joker a perfect score, writing the film “would work just as well as an engrossing character study without any of its DC Comics trappings; that it just so happens to be a brilliant Batman-universe movie is icing on the Batfan cake.” He found it a powerful and unsettling allegory of contemporary neglect and violence, and described Phoenix’s performance as the Joker as engrossing and “Oscar-worthy.” Similarly, Xan Brooks of The Observer—who also gave the film a perfect score—called it “gloriously daring and explosive” and appreciated how Phillips used elements from Scorsese films to create an original story. Variety’s Owen Gleiberman wrote, “Phoenix is astonishing as a mentally ill geek who becomes the killer-clown Joker in Todd Phillips’ neo-Taxi Driver knockout: the rare comic-book movie that expresses what’s happening in the real world.”
ComicBook.com’s Brandon Davis acclaimed Joker as a groundbreaking comic book adaptation that he found scarier than most 2019 horror films. Davis compared it favorably to the 2008 Batman film The Dark Knight, praised the cinematography and performances, and called it a film that needed to be seen to be believed. Deadline Hollywood’s Pete Hammond believes the film redefines the Joker and is “impossible to shake off.” Hammond also praised the story and performances, and summarized the film as “a bravura piece of filmmaking that speaks to the world we are actually living in today in ways that few movies do.” Peter Travers of Rolling Stone said he was lost for words in describing Phoenix’s performance, calling the film “gut-wrenching” and “simply stupendous.”
However, David Ehrlich of IndieWire was more mixed and gave the film a “C+.” He felt that while “Joker is the boldest and most exciting superhero movie since The Dark Knight,” it was “also incendiary, confused, and potentially toxic.” Ehrlich thought that the film would make DC fans happy and praised Phoenix’s performance, but criticized Phillips’ direction and the lack of originality. A more critical review came from Glenn Kenny of RogerEbert.com, who gave the film two stars out of four. Though he praised the performances and thought the story worked, Kenny criticized the social commentary and Phillips’ direction, finding the film too derivative and believing its focus was “less in entertainment than in generating self-importance.” In an analysis of the character Joker, Onmanorama’s Sajesh Mohan wrote that the movie was cliché-ridden—the only original part being Joaquin Phoenix’s acting. “The movie, with great pain and in detail, explains how Arthur Fleck turns into Joker dejected by the way the world treats him. Thanks to Phillips and Silver, Phoenix was able to bring out the king among the Jokers,” the analysis read.
Time magazine’s Stephanie Zacharek, in a negative review, labeled Phoenix’s performance as over-the-top and felt that while Phillips tried to “[give] us a movie all about the emptiness of our culture… he’s just offering a prime example of it.” She argued the plot was nonexistent, “dark only in a stupidly adolescent way,” and “stuffed with phony philosophy.” Meanwhile, NPR’s Glen Weldon thought the film lacked innovation and said its sympathetic take on the Joker was “wildly unconvincing and mundanely uninteresting.” Weldon also described Joker as trying too hard to deviate from the comics and, as a result, coming off as an imitation of films like Taxi Driver. Peter Bradshaw of The Guardian called it “the most disappointing film of the year.” While praising Phoenix’s performance and the first act, he criticized the film’s political plot developments and overall found it too derivative of various Scorsese films.
Joker generated positive responses from industry figures. DC Comics chief creative officer Jim Lee praised it as “intense, raw and soulful,” and said that it remained true to the character despite deviating from the source material. Actor Mark Hamill, who has voiced the Joker in animation and video games, thought the film “brilliantly” reinvented the character and gave it “[two] thumbs up.” Documentary filmmaker Michael Moore called Joker a “cinematic masterpiece” and said it was a “danger to society” if people did not see it. Josh Brolin, who portrays Thanos in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, found the film powerful: “To appreciate Joker I believe you have to have either gone through something traumatic in your lifetime (and I believe most of us have) or understand somewhere in your psyche what true compassion is.” Actor Vincent D’Onofrio vocally praised Phoenix’s performance in the film on Twitter, stating that he “deserves recognition for this performance,” while actress Jessica Chastain agreed, replying, “it’s one of the greatest pieces of acting I’ve ever seen.” Actress and writer Phoebe Waller-Bridge also praised the film, stating: “I think the reason people got so uncomfortable is because it feels too true, too raw. I was watching it and thinking to myself, God, if this came out a year into Obama’s time in office, I don’t think we’d be feeling as worried about it”.
Further information: Mental healthcare in the United States
Joker deals with the themes of mental illness and its effects. Its depiction of the Joker has been described as reminiscent of those who commit mass shootings in the United States as well as members of the online incel community. Vejvoda, Hammond, and The Guardian’s Christina Newland interpreted the film as a cautionary tale—society’s ignorance of those who are less fortunate will create a person like the Joker. Stephen Kent, writing for The Washington Examiner, described Arthur Fleck as blending shared aspects of mass shooters, and interpreted its message as a reminder that society is riddled with men like the Joker. Writing in People’s World, Chauncey K. Robinson said the film “walks a fine line between exploration and validation” of Joker’s character, and is “ultimately an in-your-face examination of a broken system that creates its own monsters.”
Some writers have expressed concern that Joker’s sympathetic portrayal of a homicidal maniac could inspire real-world violence. Richard Lawson of Vanity Fair found the film was too sympathetic towards “white men who commit heinous crimes;” and that the social-politics ideologies represented in the film are “evils that are far more easily identifiable” to people “who shoot up schools and concerts and churches, who gun down the women and men they covet and envy, who let loose some spirit of anarchic animus upon the world—there’s almost a woebegone mythos placed on them in the search for answers.” Jim Geraghty of National Review wrote he was “worried that a certain segment of America’s angry, paranoid, emotionally unstable young men will watch Joaquin Phoenix descending into madness and a desire to get back at society by hurting as many people as possible and exclaim, ‘finally, somebody understands me!'” Contrarily, Michael Shindler, reviewing the film in Mere Orthodoxy, while agreeing that Joker depicts a sympathetic wish fulfillment fantasy, contends (drawing on insights from Sigmund Freud and Jacques Lacan) that it is for precisely that reason that the film will, if anything, preemptively quell real-world violence by rendering “the Flecks of the world into meek somnambulists.”
British neurocriminologist Adrian Raine commented on Joker’s depiction: “For 42 years, I’ve studied the cause of crime and violence. And while watching this film, I thought, ‘Wow, what a revelation this was’. I need to buy this movie down the road, make excerpt clips of it to illustrate […] It is a great educational tool about the making of the murderer. That threw me.” Psychiatrist Kamran Ahmed highlighted the factors in Arthur’s childhood such as parental abuse and loss, and family history of mental illness in the genesis of his condition. American psychiatrist Imani Walker, who is known for her Bravo television series Married to Medicine Los Angeles and working with violent criminals with mental disorders, analyzed the Joker’s apparent mental disorders and circumstances, but also notes that Arthur was trying to get help before his downfall. She says of Arthur and others in poverty who have mental illness: “We as a society don’t even pretend that they’re real people. And that’s what this movie is about. He never had a chance.”
During a Five Star Movement event in October 2019, Italian comedian and politician Beppe Grillo gave a speech wearing the Joker’s makeup. References to the character were also found in anti-government protests worldwide. During the 2019 Lebanese protests, a group of graffiti artists called Ashekm painted a mural of the Joker holding a Molotov cocktail, and it was also reported that there was a Joker facepaint station at the protests in Beirut. In Los Ángeles, Chile, during the 2019 Chilean protests, the phrase “We are all clowns”, which is adopted by Gotham City protesters in the movie, was written at the foot of a statue. In Hong Kong, protesters challenged an emergency decree prohibiting the wearing of masks by wearing those of fictional characters such as the Joker.
Micah Uetricht, managing director of Jacobin, opined in a review published by The Guardian that he was shocked that the media did not understand the movie’s message: “we got a fairly straightforward condemnation of American austerity: how it leaves the vulnerable to suffer without the resources they need, and the horrific consequences for the rest of society that can result.” Ahmed also highlights the lack of funding for already-stretched mental health services worldwide being alluded to.
Main article: List of accolades received by Joker (2019 film)
Joker won the Golden Lion at the 76th Venice International Film Festival. The film received four nominations at the 77th Golden Globe Awards, including Best Motion Picture – Drama, Best Director for Todd Phillips, and Best Actor – Motion Picture Drama for Joaquin Phoenix. It received seven nominations at the 25th Critics’ Choice Awards, including Best Picture, Best Actor for Phoenix, and Best Adapted Screenplay. The American Film Institute included Joker as one of the top 10 films of 2019.
Joker was intended to be a standalone film with no sequels, although Warner Bros. intends for it to launch DC Black, a line of DC Comics-based films unrelated to the DCEU with darker, more experimental material. While Phillips said in August 2019 that he would be interested in making a sequel, depending on the film’s performance and if Phoenix is interested, he later clarified that “the movie’s not set up to [have] a sequel. We always pitched it as one movie, and that’s it.” In October 2019, Phoenix spoke to Peter Travers of possibly reprising the role of Arthur, centering around Travers’ asking of Phoenix if he considers Joker to be his “dream role.” Phoenix stated, “I can’t stop thinking about it … if there’s something else we can do with Joker that might be interesting,” and concluded, “It’s nothing that I really wanted to do prior to working on this movie. I don’t know that there is [more to do] … Because it seemed endless, the possibilities of where we can go with the character.”
On November 20, 2019, The Hollywood Reporter announced that a sequel was in development, with Phillips, Silver, and Phoenix expected to reprise their duties; however, Deadline Hollywood reported the same day that The Hollywood Reporter’s story was false and that negotiations had not even begun. Phillips responded to the reports by saying that he had discussed a sequel with Warner Bros. and it remained a possibility, but it was not in development.
Lost in Space Season 2 is now streaming on Netflix, just in time for the Christmas celebrations. The second season of Netflix’s sci-fi space adventure continues the story of Robinsons and their robot companion who are stranded on an alien planet, trying to survive against all odds, and planning a way to somehow reach the Resolute spacecraft. Just like season 1, the second season of Lost in Space also has ten episodes, and starts with the group trying to power up the Jupiter 2 spacecraft and ensure survival by reaching their destination – the Alpha Centauri star system.
Here’s Netflix’s official synopsis of Lost in Space Season 2:
There’s more danger — and adventure — ahead for the Robinson family! With the Jupiter 2 stranded on a mysterious ocean planet without their beloved Robot, the Robinsons must work together, alongside the mischievous and manipulative Dr. Smith and the always charming Don West, to make it back to the Resolute and reunite with the other colonists. But they quickly find all is not as it seems. A series of incredible new threats and unexpected discoveries emerge as they look for the key to finding Robot and safe passage to Alpha Centauri. They will stop at nothing to keep their family safe… survival is a Robinson specialty after all.
Developed by Matt Sazama and Burk Sharpless, the second season of Lost in Space brings JJ Field on board who plays the recurring guest role of Ben Adler, an expert on AI and advanced spaceship systems. Molly Parker and Toby Stephens return as parents Maureen and John respectively, alongside Taylor Russell, Maxwell Jenkins, and Mina Sundwall portraying the siblings Judy, Will, and Penny. The showrunners have trimmed down the average length of episodes in season 2, most of which are now below the 50-minute mark.
The second season of Lost in Space is spread across 10 episodes and is now streaming on Netflix.
- A Wrinkle in Time is a 2018 American science fantasy adventure film directed by Ava DuVernay and written by Jennifer Lee and Jeff Stockwell, based on Madeleine L’Engle’s 1962 novel of the same name. Produced by Walt Disney Pictures and Whitaker Entertainment, the story follows a young girl who, with the help of three astral travelers, sets off on a quest to find her missing father. The film stars Oprah Winfrey, Reese Witherspoon, Mindy Kaling, Storm Reid, Gugu Mbatha-Raw, Michael Peña, Zach Galifianakis, and Chris Pine.
It is Disney’s second film adaptation of L’Engle’s novel, following a 2003 television film. Development began in 2010, with DuVernay signing on to direct in February 2016. Principal photography began on November 2, 2016 in Los Angeles, California. Near the end of filming, production moved to New Zealand, where photography ended on February 25, 2017. With an estimated production budget of $103 million, the film became the first live-action film with a nine-digit budget to be directed by a black woman.
With a total production and marketing budget of around $150 million, the film was one of the biggest box office bombs in history, with losses of up to $131 million. It was the second least successful film of the year, behind Mortal Engines. The film received mixed reviews, with critics taking issue “with the film’s heavy use of CGI and numerous plot holes”, while others “celebrated its message of female empowerment and diversity”.
Thirteen-year-old middle school student Meg Murry struggles to adjust to her school and home life since her father Alex, a renowned scientist, mysteriously disappeared while studying astrophysics when she was very young. Both Meg and her mother Kate believed he solved the question of humanity’s existence and theorized that he was teleported to another world.
One evening, Meg’s younger brother Charles Wallace welcomes Mrs. Whatsit, a red-haired stranger in an extravagant white dress, into the Murry family house. Mrs. Whatsit claims that the tesseract, a type of space-travel Alex was working on, is real. The next day, while walking their dog, they meet one of Meg’s classmates, Calvin O’Keefe. He joins them to go to the house of Mrs. Who, a friend of Charles Wallace’s and a strange woman who speaks only in quotations.
Meg and Charles Wallace invite Calvin to dinner. Afterwards Meg and Calvin go into her backyard where Mrs. Whatsit appears with Mrs. Who and another woman, Mrs. Which. The three reveal themselves as astral travelers and lead Meg, Calvin, and Charles Wallace through a tesseract, taking them to a distant planet named Uriel, third planet from the star Malak in Messier 101.
After learning from the flowers that Alex has been to Uriel and since departed, Mrs. Whatsit transforms into a beautiful green flying creature and flies the children into the atmosphere where they see a dark shadow known as The IT. After gaining the women’s trust, Meg and the others tesser to another planet called Orion in the ‘belt’ of the name sake constellation to meet with a seer called Happy Medium to seek his help to find Alex.
Happy Medium shows them that Meg’s father tessered to Uriel, then Ixchel and got trapped when he tessered to Camazotz, The IT’s homeworld. After Mrs. Which explains that The IT represents all the greed, anger, pride, selfishness, and low self-esteem in the world, she shows the children personal examples of these characteristics, including an elderly friend and neighbor of Charles Wallace’s getting mugged at a bus stop, Meg’s school bully Veronica Kiley’s extreme self-consciousness about her weight, and that Calvin, despite being popular at school, is forced and abused by his father to be a perfectionist. Given the news that Alex is on dangerous and evil Camazotz, the three Mrs. insist that they all travel back to Earth to regroup and make a plan, but Meg’s strong will to not leave without her father overrides the tesseract, and she unintentionally redirects them to Camazotz.
Upon arriving in a field on Camazotz, Mrs. Which, Mrs. Whatsit, and Mrs. Who find they are unable to stay because Camazotz’s evil is stronger than their light. Before they depart, they bestow gifts: Mrs. Who gives Meg her glasses, Mrs. Whatsit gives Meg the knowledge of her faults, and Mrs. Which gives the command to never separate.
After the Mrs. leave, trees sprout up out of the ground and a forest appears. Meg and Calvin get separated from Charles Wallace by the wild forest. They desperately race to get to the wall to prevent a tornado-earthquake storm called the Land Monster that is destroying the forest. Once creatively getting past the wall, they reunite with Charles Wallace and stumble across an neighborhood where all the children are bouncing balls in perfect sync. After calling their children inside, a lady invites them to come inside her house for a meal, Meg declines the offer and reminds Calvin and Charles Wallace to not trust anyone in Camazotz.
Next, the surroundings change and the three children find themselves on a beach where they meet The IT in its bodyguard form, Red. He offers the starving children food and tells them that Alex is safe and happy. He says there is nothing to worry about, but Calvin and Meg realize something is wrong when Charles Wallace proclaims that the food tastes like sand. When Red starts repeating the times tables, Charles Wallace is hypnotized by the rhythm, enabling The IT to take control of his mind.
As Meg and Calvin pursue Red and Charles Wallace, they find themselves in a seemingly empty, white, spherical room after Meg pushes umbrellas out of her way, the “CENTRAL Central Intelligence.” Charles Wallace’s personality is different and he insults Meg and Calvin, while Red shuts down and disappears. Using Mrs. Who’s glasses, Meg discovers and then climbs an invisible staircase to a room where her father is imprisoned. After a tearful reunion, Meg brings Alex out of captivity, but Charles Wallace, under the influence of The IT’s power, forcefully drags them to meet his master. As Calvin and Meg fall under The IT’s power, Alex opens another tesser and prepares to escape with the children, abandoning Charles Wallace. Meg refuses and projects out of the tesser herself, leaving her alone. When she confronts Charles Wallace, she realizes The IT uses deception and hatred to fuel his power. Expressing her love for her brother and using the knowledge that she is imperfect, Meg frees Charles Wallace and let The IT free the control on Camazotz. The three Mrs. reappeared and congratulate Meg’s victory and Mrs. Which says that she and Charles Wallace became true warriors and they tesser back home.
After returning home, Meg, Charles Wallace reunited with her dad and mom and they assure each other that they love each other. Calvin leaves Meg to talk to his father after saying a few words to Meg and she stares at the sky, thanking the Mrs.
Oprah Winfrey as Mrs. Which, an astral being as old as the universe
Reese Witherspoon as Mrs. Whatsit, an astral being from the planet Uriel
Mindy Kaling as Mrs. Who, an astral being from the planet Ixchel
Storm Reid as Meg Murry, a gifted young girl
Lyric Wilson as a young Meg
Levi Miller as Calvin O’Keefe, Meg’s classmate and friend
Deric McCabe as Charles Wallace Murry, Meg’s precocious adopted six-year-old brother
Chris Pine as Dr. Alexander Murry, Meg and Charles Wallace’s long-lost father and Kate’s husband
Gugu Mbatha-Raw as Dr. Kate Murry, Meg and Charles Wallace’s mother and Alex’s wife
Zach Galifianakis as Happy Medium, a seer from the planet Orion.
Michael Peña as Red, a form of the IT
David Oyelowo as The IT, Red’s true diabolical form
Andre Holland as James Jenkins, the principal of Meg, Calvin and Charles Wallace’s school
Rowan Blanchard as Veronica Kiley, a student who bullies Meg
Bellamy Young as Camazotz Woman, a mother from the Camazotz neighbourhood
Conrad Roberts as Elegant Man, an elder neighbour and friend of Charles Wallace.
Yvette Cason as Teacher, a gossipy, jealous, teacher
Will McCormack as Teacher, another gossipy, jealous teacher
Daniel MacPherson as Mr. O’Keefe, Calvin’s abusive father
In October 2010, Walt Disney Pictures retained the film rights for the 1962 novel A Wrinkle in Time, by Madeleine L’Engle, which had previously been made as a 2003 television film. Following the financial success of Tim Burton’s Alice in Wonderland (2010), Disney hired Jeff Stockwell to write the screenplay for Cary Granat and his new Bedrock Studios. Granat had previously worked with Disney on the Chronicles of Narnia and Bridge to Terabithia films. The project’s budget was slated to be $35 million, which the company compared to “District 9” and “Bridge to Terabithia,” both of which were made for less than $30 million.
However, A Wrinkle in Time was part of a new California Film Commission tax credit program, which offset production costs considerably. On August 5, 2014, Jennifer Lee was announced as the screenwriter, taking over from Stockwell, who wrote the first draft.
On February 8, 2016, it was reported that Ava DuVernay had been offered the job of directing the film, and she was confirmed to direct later that same month. She became the first non white woman to direct a live-action film with a production budget of more than $100 million. The decision received positive sentiments in the media industry. Oprah Winfrey was happy to see this because DuVernay herself broke barriers for non white people in the film industry. “So I do imagine, to be a brown-skinned girl of any race throughout the world, looking up on that screen and seeing Storm, I think that is a capital A, capital W, E, some, AWESOME, experience.”
Irene Monroe of The Cambridge Day expressed her feelings that Ava DuVernay was a superb choice of a director, due to the fact that she was able to correctly highlight and expose the struggles experienced by young African-American girls.
On July 26, 2016, Variety reported that Oprah Winfrey began final negotiations to join the film to play Mrs. Which, the eldest of the three Mrs. Ws, celestial beings who guide the children along their journey. On September 7, 2016, Reese Witherspoon and Mindy Kaling were in talks to join the film, with Witherspoon to play Mrs. Whatsit, a chatty, grandmotherly sprite, and Kaling to play the quotation-reciting Mrs. Who. On September 13, 2016, Storm Reid was cast in the lead role of Meg Murry, a young girl traumatized by the disappearance of her scientist father years before.
In October 2016, Gugu Mbatha-Raw and Chris Pine were cast as Meg’s parents, Drs. Kate and Alex Murry.On November 1, 2016, additional cast announcements included Zach Galifianakis as Happy Medium, André Holland as Principal Jenkins, Levi Miller as Calvin, and Deric McCabe as Charles Wallace, along with Bellamy Young, Rowan Blanchard and Will McCormack. Later, Michael Peña joined the cast to play Red. The film producers are James Whitaker and Catherine Hand.
Principal photography on the film began November 2, 2016, in Los Angeles, California. Tobias A. Schliessler was the film’s cinematographer, Naomi Shohan as production designer, Paco Delgado as costume designer, and Rich McBride as the film’s visual effects supervisor. During production, DuVernay asked McBride to be as flexible as possible on visual effects sequences to enable her to make changes and incorporate new ideas during shooting.
Filming for A Wrinkle in Time took place in multiple locations including Eureka, California, in Humboldt County, starting November 29, 2016.
After Los Angeles, production moved to New Zealand for two weeks. During the last two weeks of February 2017, filming locations for A Wrinkle in Time were in Central Otago, New Zealand. Actors and crew were in New Zealand for two weeks to shoot scenes in the Southern Alps, including at Hunter Valley Station near Lake Hāwea, with cast and crew treated to a traditional Māori powhiri and karakia. Filming wrapped in New Zealand’s South Island after two weeks, and DuVernay declared the cast and crew’s love for New Zealand in an Instagram post.
Main article: A Wrinkle in Time (soundtrack)
On September 28, 2017, Ramin Djawadi was announced as the composer for the film, replacing Jonny Greenwood, who was initially chosen to compose, and scored the film. On February 20, 2018, it was announced that the soundtrack would feature appearances from Sade, Sia, Kehlani, Chloe x Halle, Freestyle Fellowship, DJ Khaled, and Demi Lovato.
A Wrinkle in Time premiered at the El Capitan Theatre on February 26, 2018, with its theatrical release on March 9, 2018. This was a month ahead of its initial release date of April 6, 2018.
A Wrinkle in Time was released by Walt Disney Studios Home Entertainment on 4K UHD Blu-Ray, Blu-Ray, and DVD on June 5, 2018.
A Wrinkle in Time grossed $100.5 million in the U.S. and Canada, and $32.2 million in other territories, for a worldwide total of $132.7 million. A combined $250 million was spent on production and advertisement. Following Disney’s Q2 earnings report in May 2018, Yahoo! Finance deduced the film would lose the studio $86–186 million, and in April 2019, Deadline Hollywood calculated the film lost $130.6 million, when factoring together all expenses and revenues. The film’s financial failure meant that Ava DuVernay became the first African-American woman to direct a film that earned and lost at least $100 million domestically.
In the U.S. and Canada, A Wrinkle in Time was released alongside The Hurricane Heist, Gringo, and The Strangers: Prey at Night, and was projected to gross $30–38 million from 3,980 theaters in its opening weekend. It made $10.2 million on its first day, including $1.3 million from Thursday night previews. It went on to debut to $33.3 million, finishing second behind Disney’s own Black Panther ($41.1 million in its fourth weekend). In its second weekend, the film made $16.6 million, dropping 50% to fourth place. On June 15, in its 15th week of release, the film returned to a total of 285 theaters, often as part of a double-feature with Incredibles 2. It ended up making $1.7 million (a 1,600% increase from the previous weekend), pushing the total U.S. gross to $100 million.
Internationally, the film opened in six countries alongside the U.S. and grossed $6.3 million in its opening weekend, Russia being the largest market with $4.1 million.
On review aggregator website Rotten Tomatoes, the film has an approval rating of 42% based on 306 reviews, and an average rating of 5.26/10. The website’s critical consensus reads, “A Wrinkle in Time is visually gorgeous, big-hearted, and occasionally quite moving; unfortunately, it’s also wildly ambitious to a fault, and often less than the sum of its classic parts.” On Metacritic, the film earned a weighted average score of 53 out of 100, based on 52 critics, indicating “mixed or average reviews.” Audiences polled by CinemaScore gave the film an average grade of “B” on an A+ to F scale, while PostTrak reported filmgoers gave it a 75% overall positive score; audience members under age 18 gave it an average grade of “A–” and a positive score of 89%.
Alonso Duralde of TheWrap praised the film’s visuals and performances, writing, “Awash in bold colors, bright patterns and ebullient kids, director Ava DuVernay’s new take on ‘A Wrinkle in Time’ dazzles its way across time and space even if it doesn’t quite stick the landing.” David Ehrlich of IndieWire gave the film a “C+” and praised what he described as its ambition, saying: “It almost doesn’t matter that the movie is too emotionally prescriptive to have any real power, or too high on imagination to leave any room for wonder; DuVernay evinces such faith in who she is and what she’s doing that ‘A Wrinkle in Time’ remains true to itself even when everything on screen reads false.” Jamie Broadnax, a freelance writer and member of the Critic’s Choice Awards,tweeted that after seeing the film for the second time, she still was unable to conceptualize and take in the visuals displayed throughout the film and the numerous performances from various characters. Kat Candler, an American independent filmmaker, stated that the film was a “gorgeous love letter to the warriors of the next generation”. Mercedes Howze of the New Pittsburgh Courier stated that the visuals were extraordinary and that the film “continues to make lasting impressions on innocent minds to change what it looks like to be a young black woman”.
Vince Mancini of Uproxx gave the film a negative review, saying, “…if anything, the trouble with ‘Wrinkle’ is that you never really get a sense of DuVernay’s personal touch. In fact, it feels a lot like Brad Bird’s big budget, equally smarmy 2015 Disney film Tomorrowland. Both attempt to be so broad and universal that they feel disconnected from anything human. But universality doesn’t work that way, no matter how much you tell everyone to think like a kid.” Conner Schwerdtfeger, former entertainment journalist for CinemaBlend, stated that the movie was “all over the place and underperformed,” but that DuVernay deserves some praise for the attempt at filming the seemingly unfilmable. Sean Mulvihill, actor in “Living Luminaries: On the Serious Business of Happiness,” stated that the film had no flow, and although some moments “come alive” in the film, it could not save it. Todd McCarthy of The Hollywood Reporter felt that the film was “unable to charm or disarm” the audience. Wenlei Ma, film and TV critic of news.com.au, stated that, following the halfway mark in the film, movie-goers find themselves “not caring about the other characters besides Meg” and that it seemed to “drag” in the latter half. She highlighted the film’s disappointment, regardless of the value parents find in the messages for children via quotations from Gandhi and Nelson Mandela.
First-generation (Murry series):
A Wrinkle in Time (1962; Newbery Award Winner) ISBN 0-374-38613-7
A Wind in the Door (1973) ISBN 0-374-38443-62.5. Intergalactic P.S. 3 (1970) ISBN 0-525-63405-3
A Swiftly Tilting Planet (1978) ISBN 0-374-37362-0 —National Book Award in category Children’s Books (paperback).[c]
Many Waters (1986) ISBN 0-374-34796-4
Second-generation (O’Keefe Family series):
The Arm of the Starfish (1965) ISBN 0-374-30396-7
Dragons in the Waters (1976) ISBN 0-374-31868-9
A House Like a Lotus (1984) ISBN 0-374-33385-8
An Acceptable Time (1989) ISBN 0-374-30027-5
Time Quintet series (Murry series #1-4, O’Keefe Family series #4):
A Wrinkle in Time (1962)
A Wind in the Door (1973)
A Swiftly Tilting Planet (1978)
Many Waters (1986)
An Acceptable Time (1989)
bird Box (film)
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Bird Box is a 2018 American post-apocalyptic thriller film directed by Susanne Bier from a screenplay written by Eric Heisserer, and based on the 2014 novel of the same name by Josh Malerman. The film follows a woman, played by Sandra Bullock, as she tries to protect herself and two children from malevolent supernatural entities that make people who look at them go insane and commit suicide.
Bird Box had its world premiere at the AFI Fest on November 12, 2018, and began a limited release on December 14, before streaming worldwide on Netflix on December 21, 2018.
In a post-apocalyptic world, Malorie Hayes advises two young, unnamed children that they will be going downstream on a river in a rowing boat. She strictly instructs them to not remove their blindfolds, or else they will die. From this point, the film alternates between two stages of Malorie’s story, separated by five years, until they conjoin: her attempt to navigate the river and the events that led to it.
Five years earlier, a pregnant Malorie is visited by her sister, Jessica. A news report is being shown on television about unexplained mass suicides in Romania that are quickly spreading across Europe. Malorie has a routine pregnancy checkup with Jessica accompanying her to the hospital. When leaving the hospital, Malorie sees a woman bashing her head into a glass panel followed by others panicking as chaos quickly erupts throughout the town. Malorie realizes the “violence” that was spreading across Europe had already reached North America. Malorie and Jessica attempt to drive away from the violence, but Jessica witnesses the phenomenon affecting the masses and sees the entity, loses control of herself as she drives, and the car ends up overturning. An injured Malorie then witnesses Jessica walk into the path of an oncoming garbage truck, killing herself.
Malorie attempts to flee on foot through the mass chaos on the streets. A woman, Lydia, invites Malorie over to a house for safety, even though her husband, Douglas, disagrees. However, right before she reaches Malorie, she goes into a trance, begins talking to her dead mother, and casually climbs into a burning car, which subsequently explodes. Malorie is rescued and brought into their house by Tom, a fleeing passerby. While recovering at their base, Charlie, one of the survivors who seems to have somewhat comprehensive knowledge of what could be happening, theorizes that demonic entities have invaded Earth, taking the form of their victims’ worst fears and driving them insane before causing them to die by suicide. At the insistence of Tom, they cover all windows in the house and blindfold themselves whenever they must venture outside. Later, Greg volunteers to tie himself to a chair while monitoring the surveillance cameras to see the entity on TV as it approaches but ends up killing himself by rocking his chair violently and slamming his head into a hearthstone after seeing it.
As the supply of food decreases (and with the arrival of a new survivor, Olympia, who is also pregnant), most of the group go to a supermarket close by to restock. Malorie finds pet birds and decides to take them along with their supplies. The group attempts to help a coworker of Charlie’s who is locked outside the supermarket begging for help, and whom Charlie describes as “a little crazy.” As they contemplate the risks of opening the door, the birds that Malorie was saving go into a hysterical fury. The group is attacked by the infected coworker, who was not killed by the entities but is instead used to infect others. Charlie sacrifices himself to save the others, who are able to make it back safely to the house.
Sometime after, Felix (a survivor) and Lucy steal the car and drive away. Soon thereafter, Olympia lets Gary, a stranger and apparent lone survivor of another group, into the house, against Douglas’ objections. Douglas gets extremely upset and starts threatening the others with a shotgun and is knocked unconscious by Cheryl (an elderly survivor). Douglas is subsequently imprisoned in the garage. Later, Olympia and Malorie go into labor, and Cheryl helps with the births. Gary starts to take out various drawings of the entity and seems to undergo a trance, indicating that he could have already been partially overtaken by the entity when he arrived. He opens the garage door to kill Douglas. He peeks outside and is completely taken over; he then knocks out Tom and proceeds to remove all the coverings from all the windows. Despite Malorie’s warnings, Olympia fails to look away from the windows and jumps out of the window. Gary forces Cheryl to look and as a result, Cheryl repeatedly stabs herself in the neck with a pair of scissors she is carrying. Douglas blindly attempts to kill Gary with a shotgun but fails, which results in Gary being able to kill Douglas with the scissors. While Malorie tries to protect the newborn babies (Malorie’s boy and Olympia’s girl), Tom recovers consciousness in time to overpower and kill Gary.
Five years later, Tom and Malorie are living together with the children, whose only names are “Boy” and “Girl.” They receive a transmission from Rick, a survivor stating that they are well and safe at a community hidden in the forest. The four decide to go to the community but are ambushed by a group of infected survivors along the way. Without hesitation, Tom runs out to distract the group while Malorie and the children attempt to make an escape. When the group notices Malorie and the children escaping, Tom decides to open his eyes and shoot the group dead. He is overtaken by one of the entities, but he manages to shoot the last member of the group before shooting himself.
Malorie, the children, and their pet birds, which are being carried in a box to provide a warning against the entity, make their way blindfolded down the river on a boat. They fight off an infected survivor and survive raging rapids.
The boat flips in the rapids, but Malorie, Boy, and Girl manage to all find each other. Soon after, all three are separated when Malorie accidentally slides down a hill. The entities attempt to convince Boy and Girl to remove their blindfolds using Malorie’s voice. Malorie is able to tell them to fight the urge. Once they are all together again, they are chased by the entity, which is implied by camera movement and wind.
The three eventually reach the community, a former school for the blind. Malorie releases the pet birds from the box to the other birds up on the ceiling and finally gives the children names: Tom and Olympia.
Sandra Bullock as Malorie
Trevante Rhodes as Tom
Jacki Weaver as Cheryl
John Malkovich as Douglas
Sarah Paulson as Jessica
Rosa Salazar as Lucy
Danielle Macdonald as Olympia
Lil Rel Howery as Charlie
Tom Hollander as Gary
Machine Gun Kelly as Felix (credited as Colson Baker)
BD Wong as Greg
Pruitt Taylor Vince as Rick
Vivien Lyra Blair as Girl/Olympia
Julian Edwards as Boy/Tom
Parminder Nagra as Dr. Lapham
Rebecca Pidgeon as Lydia
Amy Gumenick as Samantha
Taylor Handley as Jason
Happy Anderson as River Man
The film rights to Bird Box were optioned by Universal Pictures in 2013, prior to the book’s release. Scott Stuber and Chris Morgan were set to produce the film, with It and Mama director Andy Muschietti attached as director. Screenwriter Eric Heisserer was in negotiations to pen the script. In July 2017, after Stuber became head of the feature film division of Netflix, it was announced that Netflix had acquired the rights to the book and would develop the film, with Sandra Bullock and John Malkovich starring. Susanne Bier was announced as the director.
In July 2017, Sandra Bullock and John Malkovich were cast in the film as Malorie Hayes and Douglas. In October 2017, Danielle Macdonald, Trevante Rhodes, Jacki Weaver, Sarah Paulson, Rosa Salazar, Lil Rel Howery, and Amy Gumenickjoined the cast. In November 2017, Machine Gun Kelly and David Dastmalchian were also added.
Principal photography began in California in October 2017. Wilderness scenes were shot on the Smith River in the far northern part of the state. The house exterior is from a place in Monrovia. Cinematography partially took place in Santa Cruz, and the final scene was shot at Scripps College.
The production used real-life birds during filming as much as possible, replacing them with digital birds for sequences when the birds became “agitated.”
The film uses footage of the Lac-Mégantic rail disaster, which caused the death of 47 people in the town of Lac-Mégantic, Quebec on July 6, 2013. The stock-footage was purchased from a vendor and Netflix stated it would stay in the movie even after a request to remove it from survivors of the disaster. Netflix later removed the footage and replaced with an outtake from a canceled U.S. TV series. The same footage was also used in another Netflix production, Travelers, but has since been removed.
The visual effects were created by Industrial Light & Magic and supervised by Marcus Taormina.
Oscar winners Trent Reznor & Atticus Ross (Nine Inch Nails) were hired to score the film. The soundtrack album itself was released about two weeks after the release of the film, on January 1, 2019. It was first released for sale only on Nine Inch Nails’s website, and later on iTunes, Apple Music, Spotify and other platforms. The version that was released was an “Abridged” album, containing an hour and 6 minutes of music; 10 tracks. In a statement on the Nine Inch Nails website, Trent Reznor said:
“Like all soundtrack records we release, we aim for these to play like albums that take you on a journey and can exist as companion pieces to the films and as their own separate works. We created a significant amount of music and conceptual sound for bird box, a lot of which never made it to your ears in the final version of the film. We’ve decided to present you with this version of the soundtrack record that represents what bird box is to us. We hope you enjoy. For those interested, we will be releasing a more expansive (read: more self-indulgent) physical-only offering this spring that will contain an additional hour of music and artwork that colors further outside the lines…”
The full version of the soundtrack was released on November 22, 2019, exclusively on a special edition vinyl box set (with a digital download at purchase). The full version contains 13 more tracks and an extra hour of music, resulting in a 2 hours and 6 minute, 23 track album.
The film had its world premiere at the AFI Fest on November 12, 2018. However, due to the Woolsey Fire that hit California and out of respect for the victims of the Thousand Oaks shooting, Netflix cancelled AFI Fest’s red carpet coverage scheduled for the premiere. The film began a limited theatrical run on December 14, 2018, before streaming on Netflix on December 21, 2018.
On review aggregator Rotten Tomatoes, the film holds an approval rating of 63% based on 156 reviews, with an average rating of 5.73/10. The website’s critical consensus reads, “Bird Box never quite reaches its intriguing potential, but strong acting and an effectively chilly mood offer intermittently creepy compensation.” On Metacritic, the film has a weighted average score of 51 out of 100, based on 26 critics, indicating “mixed or average reviews”.
Brian Tallerico from RogerEbert.com stated that “Most of the problems with Bird Box come back to a thin screenplay, one that too often gives its characters flat, expository dialogue and then writes itself into a corner with a climax that’s just silly when it needs to be tense.” Amy Nicholson, in a review for British newspaper The Guardian, gave a negative appraisal, awarding the film 2 out of 5 stars and concluding that “as the film staggers on in its quest to give us entertainment satisfaction or death, we’re tempted to identity [sic] with the movie’s first victim, a woman in a tracksuit banging her head against the glass, ready to get this painful sight over with.” Writing for Forbes, Sarah Aswell described the movie as one “that embraces everything about the (horror genre) formula, both good and bad – this movie has moments of true, delightful, fright, but it also has some of the corniness and shallowness that many horror movies can’t shake.” New York Times found the film occasionally riveting and disappointing.
According to Nielsen, Bird Box was watched by nearly 26 million viewers in its first seven days of release in the United States. It also revealed that a significant part of its audience were young aged 18 to 34 (36%), female (57%), and either African American (24%) or Latino (22%). Netflix also released its own viewing figure that gave a worldwide audience of over 45 million in seven days, with views defined by the company as the film streaming for over 70 percent of its time. The viewing figure was claimed to be the best ever for a Netflix film. This audience figure released by Netflix was met with skepticism from some analysts, who cited a lack of independent verification of the view count. According to Netflix, the film was viewed by 80 million households in the first 4 weeks following its release. A Barclays study deduced that had the film received a traditional theatrical release, it would have grossed about $98 million worldwide.
Bird Box blindfold challenge
In Australia, Netflix originally partnered with four Twitch streamers in performing what they called a Bird Box challenge, in which they would play some popular video games while blindfolded. However, the challenge became widely mimicked on the Internet by individuals wearing blindfolds while trying to do ordinary activities, causing injuries to some. In response, Netflix released several messages over social media advising people not to undertake the challenge or hurt themselves.Nevertheless, in January 2019, a 17-year-old girl in a blindfold taking part in the craze drove into oncoming traffic in Utah and crashed her car, prompting the police in the state to issue the same warning as Netflix.
|Country of origin||United States|
|No. of seasons||2|
|No. of episodes||24 (list of episodes)|
|Running time||46–151 minutes|
|Picture format||4K (Ultra HD)|
|Audio format||5.1 (Surround) with optional Descriptive Video Servicetrack|
|Original release||June 5, 2015 –
June 8, 2018
Sense8 (a play on the word sensate /ˈsɛnseɪt/) is an American science fiction drama web television series created by Lana and Lilly Wachowski and J. Michael Straczynski for Netflix. The production companies behind Sense8 include the Wachowskis’ Anarchos Productions (replaced by Lana and her wife’s Venus Castina Productions in the second season), Straczynski’s Studio JMS, and Georgeville Television, with Unpronounceable Productions having been set up specifically for this show.
The show’s first season introduced a multinational ensemble cast, with Aml Ameen, Doona Bae, Jamie Clayton, Tina Desai, Tuppence Middleton, Max Riemelt, Miguel Ángel Silvestre, and Brian J. Smithportraying eight strangers from different parts of the world who suddenly discover that they are “sensates”: human beings who are mentally and emotionally linked. Freema Agyeman, Terrence Mann, Anupam Kher, Naveen Andrews, and Daryl Hannah also star. In the second season Toby Onwumere replaces Ameen. The show explores subjects that its creators feel have not been emphasized in many science fiction shows to date, such as politics, identity, sexuality, gender, and religion.
All episodes of the first season of Sense8 were written by the Wachowskis and Straczynski; in the second season, Lilly Wachowski took a break from the show, and the episodes were written by just Lana Wachowski and Straczynski, with the exception of the series finale which was written by Lana, David Mitchell, and Aleksandar Hemon. Most episodes were directed by the Wachowskis (or just Lana, in the second season), with the remainder being divided between their frequent collaboratorsJames McTeigue, Tom Tykwer, and Dan Glass. Sense8 was filmed almost entirely on location in a multitude of cities around the world.
The first season, consisting of 12 episodes, became available for streaming on Netflix on June 5, 2015, and was met with generally favorable critical reception. It was praised for its representation of LGBTQ characters and themes, winning the GLAAD Media Awardfor Outstanding Drama Series. It was also recognized with a Location Managers Guild award for its use of locations as an integral part of the story, and a Primetime Emmy Award nomination for Outstanding Original Main Title Theme Music.
The second season began with a two-hour Christmas special in December 2016, with the remaining 10 episodes released in May 2017. However the following month Netflix announced that they had cancelled the series, which had ended with a cliffhanger in expectation of a third season, then under negotiation. In response to criticism of the cancellation, especially with an unresolved story, Netflix produced a two-and-a-half-hour series finale, which was released on June 8, 2018. The season was overall met with positive critical reception and received a Primetime Emmy Award nomination for Outstanding Cinematography for a Single-Camera Series (One Hour), and two nominations by the GLAAD Media Awards for Outstanding Drama Series and Outstanding TV Movie or Limited Series for the season proper and series finale, respectively.
- 9Further reading
- 10External links
The story of Sense8 begins when the psychic connection of eight strangers from different cultures and parts of the world is “birthed” by a woman called Angelica, who kills herself to avoid capture by a man named “Whispers”. The eight eventually discover they now form a cluster of “sensates”: human beings who are mentally and emotionally linked, can sense and communicate with each other, and can share their knowledge, language, and skills.
In the first season, the eight—Capheus, Sun, Nomi, Kala, Riley, Wolfgang, Lito, and Will—are shown trying both to live their everyday lives and to figure how and why they are connected. Meanwhile, a sensate named Jonas, who was involved with Angelica, comes to their aid, while the Biologic Preservation Organization (BPO) and Whispers, a high-ranking sensate inside BPO, attempt to hunt them down.
In the second season, the eight have grown accustomed to their connection and help each other on a daily basis. They learn more about Homo sensorium (the scientific name of sensates), the history and goals of BPO, the role of Angelica in it, and their powers and how to temporarily suspend them. They also meet other sensates, not all of whom are friendly. At the same time, Jonas attempts to both aid them and look after himself after being captured by Whispers, who is now involved in a cat-and-mouse game with Will, each of them trying to outsmart the other.
In the series finale, the cluster and the people closest to them meet up in person to save Wolfgang who has been captured by BPO. To that end, the cluster has kidnapped Whispers and Jonas to use them as a bargaining chip and source of information, respectively. The heroes discover the two men’s and Angelica’s personal motivations, meet potential allies from both sapiens and sensorium, and deal with the Chairman of BPO, who launches a global attack against sensates and their allies.
The eight sensates
- Aml Ameen (season 1) / Toby Onwumere (season 2) as Capheus “Van Damn” Onyango, a matatu driver in Nairobi who is trying to earn money to buy HIV/AIDS medication for his mother. Capheus’ matatu is called the “Van Damn” and sports drawings of Jean-Claude Van Damme as he is a passionate fan of his movies. This, along with his bravery to protect his matatu and its passengers from bandits, earned him his widely used Van Damn nickname (sometimes also called Van Damme).
- Doona Bae as Sun Bak, daughter of a powerful Seoul businessman and a burgeoning star in the underground kickboxing world.
- Jamie Clayton as Nomi Marks, a trans woman hacktivist and blogger living in San Francisco with her girlfriend Amanita. She chose the name Nomi to stand for “Know Me”.
- Tina Desai as Kala Dandekar, a university-educated pharmacist and devout Hindu in Mumbai who is engaged to marry a man she does not love.
- Tuppence Middleton as Riley “Blue” Gunnarsdóttir, an Icelandic DJ living in London who is trying to escape a tragic past.
- Max Riemelt as Wolfgang Bogdanow, a Berlin locksmith and safe-cracker who has unresolved conflicts with his late father and participates in organized crime.
- Miguel Ángel Silvestre as Lito Rodriguez, a closeted actor of Spanish background living in Mexico City with his boyfriend Hernando.
- Brian J. Smith as Will Gorski, a Chicago police officer haunted by an unsolved murder from his childhood. Speaking about the Wachowskis picking names that carry a significance for their characters, Smith said about “Will”: “The whole idea of Will Gorski, the idea of someone who’s got this drive to act and to do, not just to be done to. It’s very central to Will’s character.”
- Freema Agyeman as Amanita “Neets” Caplan, Nomi’s girlfriend, who later becomes an ally for the new sensates.
- Terrence Mann as Milton Bailey “Whispers” Brandt, a sensate who turned against his own kind and who is a high-ranking member of an organization determined to neutralize sensates, known as the Biologic Preservation Organization (BPO). Whispers uses many fake names, such as Dr. Matheson or Gibbons,and is commonly known among sensates as “The Cannibal” for devouring his own cluster. Angelica and the people she’s been involved with call him Whispers, after she likened him to the voice in ones’ head that beckons them to commit suicide; “That voice never shouts. It only whispers.”
- Anupam Kher as Sanyam Dandekar, Kala’s loving father, a chef and restaurant owner.
- Naveen Andrews as Jonas Maliki, a sensate from a different cluster who wants to help the newly-born cluster of sensates.
- Daryl Hannah as Angelica “Angel” Turing, a sensate from the same cluster as Jonas, who becomes the “mother” of the new sensates’ cluster as she activates their psychic connection.
|1||12||June 5, 2015|
|2||12||1||December 23, 2016|
|10||May 5, 2017|
|1||June 8, 2018|
Season 1 (2015)
|Title||Directed by||Written by||Original release date|
|1||1||“Limbic Resonance”||The Wachowskis||The Wachowskis & J. Michael Straczynski||June 5, 2015|
|2||2||“I Am Also a We”||The Wachowskis||The Wachowskis & J. Michael Straczynski||June 5, 2015|
|3||3||“Smart Money Is on the Skinny Bitch”||The Wachowskis||The Wachowskis & J. Michael Straczynski||June 5, 2015|
|4||4||“What’s Going On?”||Tom Tykwer||The Wachowskis & J. Michael Straczynski||June 5, 2015|
|5||5||“Art Is Like Religion”||James McTeigue||The Wachowskis & J. Michael Straczynski||June 5, 2015|
|6||6||“Demons”||The Wachowskis||The Wachowskis & J. Michael Straczynski||June 5, 2015|
|7||7||“W. W. N. Double D?”||James McTeigue||The Wachowskis & J. Michael Straczynski||June 5, 2015|
|8||8||“We Will All Be Judged by the Courage of Our Hearts”||Dan Glass||The Wachowskis & J. Michael Straczynski||June 5, 2015|
|9||9||“Death Doesn’t Let You Say Goodbye”||The Wachowskis||The Wachowskis & J. Michael Straczynski||June 5, 2015|
|10||10||“What Is Human?”||The Wachowskis||The Wachowskis & J. Michael Straczynski||June 5, 2015|
|11||11||“Just Turn the Wheel and the Future Changes”||Tom Tykwer||The Wachowskis & J. Michael Straczynski||June 5, 2015|
|12||12||“I Can’t Leave Her”||The Wachowskis||The Wachowskis & J. Michael Straczynski||June 5, 2015|
Season 2 (2016–18)
|Title||Directed by||Written by||Original release date|
|13||1||“Happy F*cking New Year.”
“A Christmas Special”[a]
|Lana Wachowski||Lana Wachowski & J. Michael Straczynski||December 23, 2016|
|14||2||“Who Am I?”||Lana Wachowski||Lana Wachowski & J. Michael Straczynski||May 5, 2017|
|15||3||“Obligate Mutualisms”||Lana Wachowski||Lana Wachowski & J. Michael Straczynski||May 5, 2017|
|16||4||“Polyphony”||James McTeigue||Lana Wachowski & J. Michael Straczynski||May 5, 2017|
|17||5||“Fear Never Fixed Anything”||James McTeigue||Lana Wachowski & J. Michael Straczynski||May 5, 2017|
|18||6||“Isolated Above, Connected Below”||Lana Wachowski||Lana Wachowski & J. Michael Straczynski||May 5, 2017|
|19||7||“I Have No Room In My Heart For Hate”||James McTeigue||Lana Wachowski & J. Michael Straczynski||May 5, 2017|
|20||8||“All I Want Right Now Is One More Bullet”||Dan Glass||Lana Wachowski & J. Michael Straczynski||May 5, 2017|
|21||9||“What Family Actually Means”||Lana Wachowski||Lana Wachowski & J. Michael Straczynski||May 5, 2017|
|22||10||“If All the World’s a Stage, Identity Is Nothing But a Costume”||Tom Tykwer||Lana Wachowski & J. Michael Straczynski||May 5, 2017|
|23||11||“You Want a War?”||Lana Wachowski||Lana Wachowski & J. Michael Straczynski||May 5, 2017|
|24||12||“Amor Vincit Omnia”[b]||Lana Wachowski||Lana Wachowski &
David Mitchell & Aleksandar Hemon
|June 8, 2018|
Conception and development
According to the Wachowskis, the origins of Sense8 date back several years before the announcement of the show to “a late-night conversation about the ways technology simultaneously unites and divides us”. When deciding to create a television series, Lana chose to brainstorm ideas with Straczynski because of his extensive experience working with the format, by inviting him to her house in San Francisco. After several days of discussion, they decided on creating a show that would explore the relationship between empathy and evolutionin the human race, necessitating filming on location in several countries over the world. The title of the show was thought up by Lana on their second day of brainstorming, as a play on the word sensate and the notion of eight main characters.
On October 2, 2012, Variety first reported the existence of the show. The Wachowskis and Straczynski had written three hour-long spec scripts, and were attempting to shop them around. Their first meeting with potential buyers was with Netflix. The Wachowskis and Straczynski talked to them about subjects such as gender, identity, secrecy, and privacy. Netflix announced that they had ordered a 10-episode first season for the series on March 27, 2013, which during filming was extended to 12. Straczynski and the Wachowskis mapped out five seasons worth of stories for the series from the beginning, including the series’ final episode. Lilly Wachowski, after completing her gender transition, decided to take some time off and did not return as writer or director for the second season, although she remained active as co-creator.
Initial writing for the first season was split between the Wachowskis and Straczynski. The show was transformed when they decided to limit the storytelling, with the exception of the opening scene of the first episode, to the perspective of the eight characters. Lana Wachowski, a trans woman, has written her first transgender character in her career in the series: Nomi Marks. For that she partly used her own experiences.Jamie Clayton, who plays Nomi, has provided the example of a scene where a young Nomi is bullied by boys in a gym shower, as a scene that was based on experiences from Lana’s life. Freema Agyeman, who plays Nomi’s girlfriend Amanita, has shared that her character was based heavily on Lana’s wife, Karin Winslow.
Unlike the first season, where the Wachowskis and Straczynski split the number of scripts in half and worked remotely from each other, writing for the second season was performed by Lana and Straczynski by collaborating inside a shared writers’ room. David Mitchell and Aleksandar Hemon worked as additional writers on the second season and were credited as “consultants”. They spent a week in September 2015 with Lana, Straczynski, and script supervisor Julie Brown, proposing to them situations to be further developed by Lana and Straczynski. Later, once filming began, Lana did a lot of rewrites on a daily basis as she got inspired by the locations, actors, and so on, even on the set. When the series finale special was announced, Lana, Mitchell, and Hemon returned as writers.
On June 20, 2014, Deadline Hollywood announced the cast of the eight lead characters, along with Freema Agyeman, Naveen Andrews, Daryl Hannah, Alfonso Herrera, Eréndira Ibarra, and Terence Mann. For the roles of those characters living outside of America, the filmmakers wanted to assemble a cast of international actors that matched the nationality of their respective characters, if possible. For example, Doona Bae, Tina Desai, and Max Riemelt are from Seoul, Mumbai, and Berlin like their respective characters. Jamie Clayton is a trans woman like the character she plays. In November, Deadline Hollywood wrote than Christian Oliver had joined the cast as a recurring villain.
On April 26, 2016, Deadline Hollywood reported that Aml Ameen abruptly left production a couple of episodes into filming of the second season over a conflict with Lana Wachowski that started during the table read for the season and progressively got worse. Subsequent to Ameen’s departure, the role of Capheus was recast to Toby Onwumere after a seven-day auditioning process. Earlier in April, Kick Gurry revealed he had been cast in the second season. In May, Deadline Hollywood reported Ben Cole had been cast as Todd, a sensate who would rather be “normal”. In September, Sylvester McCoy reportedly revealed he filmed three or four episodes of the second season.
Filming and cinematography
To properly tell the international aspects of the story, filming for Sense8 took place almost entirely on location around the globe. In the first season, filming took place in nine cities located in eight countries: Berlin, Chicago, London, Mexico City, Mumbai, Nairobi, Reykjavík, San Francisco, and Seoul. Production began on June 18, 2014, in San Francisco. The writers wanted to feature an event in each city. They were able to schedule the Pride scenes with its Dykes on Bikes on the Dyke March in San Francisco, the Fourth of July fireworks celebration in Chicago, and the Ganesha Chaturthi Hindu festival in Mumbai. Filming wrapped in Iceland on January 21, 2015. By the end of the shooting, the filmmakers had completed 100,000 miles (160,000 km) of flight time, or four times around the globe.
For the second season, production credited 16 cities located in 11 countries for having been part of the filming.The major locations they filmed in include all of the first season’s except Reykjavík, and the following new ones: Amsterdam, Argyll, Chippenham, Los Angeles, Malta, Positano, Redwoods, and São Paulo. Production start for the main unit of the second season was given an expected date of March 2016, but a separate shoot involving the principal actors began on December 30, 2015, in Berlin, to capture footage during the Christmas holidays. Main unit filming resumed in Berlin in the middle of March 2016. In São Paulo, they filmed unrehearsed in front of a crowd of millions in its 20th Gay Pride Parade. In Amsterdam, they were the first production to film in the Rijksmuseum. On September 19, 2016, with the completion of the Malta shoot, filming for the second season came to an end. Overall, the cast and crew flew in excess of 250,000 miles (400,000 km) to complete the season. Filming for the series finale took place in Berlin, Brussels, Naples, and Paris. Production began in Berlin on October 2, 2017. In Paris, they filmed a four-minute fireworks show near the Eiffel Tower. Filming wrapped in Berlin on November 12, 2017.
Netflix required the production to shoot with 4K resolution cameras to make the look of the show future-proof.During the first season, cinematographer John Toll, once again collaborating with the Wachowskis after Cloud Atlas and Jupiter Ascending, personally handled the cinematography in San Francisco, Chicago, London, Iceland, and Seoul. In the second season he handled the majority of the locations. Additional cinematographers worked with the rest of the directors in the remaining locations. James McTeigue worked with Danny Ruhlman, and Tom Tykwer worked with Frank Griebe and Christian Almesberger. Toll returned as cinematographer for the series finale, teaming up again with Lana.
Toll’s cinematography in the third episode of the second season was recognized with a nomination for Outstanding Cinematography for a Single-Camera Series (One Hour) during the 69th Primetime Creative Arts Emmy Awards.
The show’s directors were attached to locations instead of episodes and with several countries appearing in every episode, in reality none of them has a singular director. During the first season, the Wachowskis were responsible for directorial duties in scenes shot in Chicago, San Francisco, London, and Iceland.McTeigue worked on the Mexico City and Mumbai parts along with some in Reykjavík, and Tykwer helmed Berlin and Nairobi. Dan Glass made his directorial debut in the Seoul part of the story. In total, the Wachowskis were credited for directing seven episodes, McTeigue and Tykwer two each, and Glass one.
In the second season, Lana Wachowski took over many of the filmmaking aspects of the show. Production sound mixer Stevie Haywood recounted Lana’s directing style was to use two cameras as the default setup, and develop the shot over “enormously long takes” which could last up to fifteen to twenty minutes. McTeigue returned as director for Mexico City, and Tykwer for the Nairobi parts. According to Glass, in the second season he directed the second unit in Seoul, and he also did some directing in Berlin. Overall, six episodes of the second season, including the Christmas special and series finale, credit Lana as director, three credit McTeigue, and Tykwer and Glass get credited each in one.
Effects and post-production
Seoul unit director Dan Glass and Jim Mitchell were the visual effects supervisors of the first season. The season had a total VFX shot count of about 1200. An in-house VFX team was established in Chicago which completed over 700 shots. The major external VFX vendors were Locktix VFX (160–180 shots), Technicolor VFX(over 100 shots), and Encore VFX. Because of the series’ tight budget and timeline the production made the decision to do most of the effects, including the telepathy scenes, in-camera and only enhance them digitally where appropriate. Technicolor provided dailies and worked with cinematographer John Toll and the Wachowskis to color grade the show. Technicolor finished the show in 4K and delivered both 2K and 4K masters.
In the second season, the visual effects supervisors were Dan Glass and Ryan Urban. Technicolor were again responsible for managing dailies and color grading the show, while their VFX department delivered over 600 shots for the first 11 episodes, and an additional 109 for the series finale. Sense8 was edited in the Wachowskis’ headquarters in Chicago, Kinowerks, by Joe Hobeck and Joseph Jett Sally in the first season and by Sally and Fiona Colbeck in the second.
Music and title sequence
The score of Sense8 was composed by Johnny Klimek and Tom Tykwer, with additional contributions by Gabriel Isaac Mounsey, and recorded by the MDR Leipzig Radio Symphony Orchestra. Each season’s score was written up to a year and a half before filming began, enabling the production to play it back to the actors before shooting a scene. A soundtrack album for the first season was released digitally by WaterTower Musicon May 5, 2017. It includes 10 tracks by Klimek and Tykwer. For the second season, Klimek and Tykwer provided to the editorial about 10 “mother” themes, each with a length of over five minutes, before filming began. In the Christmas special episode “Happy F*cking New Year”, a cover of Leonard Cohen‘s “Hallelujah” is featured, which was arranged by Gary Fry and recorded by the Apollo Chorus of Chicago, with the lead vocalistbeing Daniel Martin Moore.
The theme music of Sense8 was picked by the Wachowskis from the two hours of original music Tykwer and Klimek had written. The show received a nomination for Outstanding Original Main Title Theme Music during the 68th Primetime Creative Arts Emmy Awards. For the series almost two-minute long title sequence, Karin Winslow rented a car and with the help of a camera assistant traveled in the eight featured countries of the first season and captured over a hundred shots. “My directive from Lana was to go out and describe each country by what you see; find the nuances, find the food, find what people are doing, get a feel for the place,” said Winslow. For the second season, and again for the finale, some of the footage was replaced by new shots.
Cancellation, revival, and future
On June 1, 2017, Netflix announced they had cancelled the series after two seasons. Later that month, Chief Content Officer of Netflix Ted Sarandos during his talk on Produced By Conference, commented that the show was cancelled because its audience, despite being very passionate, was not large enough to support the high production costs. As a response to the cancellation, fans created online petitions, called Netflix, and tweeted #RenewSense8 and other hashtags, in an attempt to bring back the show. On June 29, 2017, the official social media accounts of the show posted a letter by Lana Wachowski which announced the release of a two-hour special targeting 2018. A release date of June 8, 2018 and a final running time of 151 minutes were reported later.
Netflix billed the second special in their announcement as the series finale, but Lana left open the future of Sense8 past the special’s release. On August 5, 2017, during a Facebook Live with Lana and the cast about the show’s revival, Lana joked that because she believed that the fans of the show would go and create more fans, she was writing the entire third season. A few days later, Brian J. Smith said during an interview that he believed if “a truly eyebrow-raising amount of people” watched the special, they would make more.Conversely, shortly after the special’s release, executive producer Grant Hill said that they followed Netflix’s directive to design it as the series finale, and that there have not been any talks about the possibility of another revival.
Critical reception, popularity, and impact
Critical reception of the first season of Sense8 has been generally favorable. Rotten Tomatoes, a review aggregator website, reported a 71% critical approval rating with an average rating of 6.25/10 based on 62 reviews. The website’s critical consensus reads, “Some of the scenarios border on illogical, but the diverse characters and the creative intersections between their stories keep the Wachowskis’ Sense8 compelling.”On Metacritic, which uses a weighted average, the season is assigned a score of 64 out of 100, based on 24 critics, indicating “generally favorable reviews”.
Sense8 continued to be positively received in its second season. Rotten Tomatoes indexed 15 reviews for the early released Christmas special, and reported an 87% critical approval rating for it, with an average rating of 6.88/10. The website assigned the following consensus to the special: “Sense8 serves up a heaping helping of yuletide queerness and sci-fi slyness in this narratively messy but richly felt special.” Based on 28 reviews, Rotten Tomatoes assigned the 10 episodes that followed the special a critical approval rating of 93%, with an average rating of 7.57/10. The critical consensus reads, “Sense8 maintains its stunning visuals, Wachowski wackiness, and great heart — though its individual characters deserve more development.” On Metacritic, the season was assigned a score of 73 out of 100, based on 8 critics, indicating “generally favorable reviews”.Rotten Tomatoes also collected 28 reviews for the series finale, and calculated a 93% critical approval rating, and an average rating of 7.15/10. The finale’s critical consensus reads, “A hard fought coda to a beloved series, Sense8′s epilogue exemplifies its strange, sensual, somewhat silly delights.”
In a report released by Netflix, it was discovered that at least 70% of the viewers that watched up to the third episode ended up watching the entire first season, and Straczynski was told there are people that watch it “straight through – three, four, six times.” In another report released by Netflix, Sense8 was listed among the shows whose viewers tend to heavily binge-watch their first seasons, rather than savoring their episodes by watching them at a slower pace. Netflix’s Chief Content Officer Ted Sarandos praised the success of Sense8in the up-and-coming French and German markets but also globally. Vice president of international series for Netflix Erik Barmack has named Sense8 one of the most popular Netflix series in the Brazilian market.Less than three days after the premiere of the first season, Variety reported that it had been pirated more than half a million times, regardless of the series’ digital distribution. Netflix also placed the second season of Sense8 at fifth place on their list for the year 2017 about couples where one of the two cannot resist the urge to wait, and ends up watching episodes ahead of their significant other.
Former Colombian President and 2016 Nobel Peace Prize recipient Juan Manuel Santos heavily referenced Sense8 in a speech he made in April 2019 during the graduation ceremony of students of the University of Los Andes who participated in the Ser Pilo Paga program. Santos recited the basic premise of the show about the fictional species Homo sensorium who can feel empathy for one another, and expressed his wish and belief that one day humanity will be the same, “united in diversity and tolerance”.
|2015||Camerimage||First Look – TV Pilots Competition||Lana Wachowski and Lilly Wachowski (directors), Christian Almesberger, Frank Griebe, Danny Ruhlmann and John Toll(cinematographers) (for: “Limbic Resonance”)||Nominated|
|2016||Dorian Awards||LGBTQ TV Show of the Year||Sense8||Nominated|
|Campy TV Show of the Year||Sense8||Nominated|
|GLAAD Media Awards||Outstanding Drama Series||Sense8||Won|
|HPA Awards||Outstanding Color Grading – Television||Tony Dustin (for: “What’s Going On?”)||Nominated|
|Location Managers Guild Awards||Outstanding Locations in a Contemporary Television Series||Marco Giacalone and Bill Bowling||Won|
|Saturn Awards||Best New Media Television Series||Sense8||Nominated|
|Emmy Awards||Outstanding Original Main Title Theme Music||Johnny Klimek and Tom Tykwer||Nominated|
|2017||Emmy Awards||Outstanding Cinematography for a Single-Camera Series (One Hour)||John Toll (for: “Obligate Mutualisms”)||Nominated|
|2018||Dorian Awards||LGBTQ TV Show of the Year||Sense8||Nominated|
|GLAAD Media Awards||Outstanding Drama Series||Sense8||Nominated|
|2019||Producers Guild of America Awards||Outstanding Producer of Streamed or Televised Motion Pictures||Marcus Loges, Alex Boden, Roberto Malerba, Terry Needham, John Toll, Lana Wachowski, J. Michael Straczynski, and Grant Hill (for: “Together Until the End”)[c]||Nominated|
|GLAAD Media Awards||Outstanding TV Movie or Limited Series||Sense8||Nominated|
The red carpet premiere of Sense8 took place on May 27, 2015, in San Francisco’s AMC Metreon, where the first three episodes were previewed. Starting in the middle of July 2015, Netflix Brazil released a series of documentary shorts called Sense8: Decoded. Inspired by Sense8 and directed by João Wainer, the shorts briefly touch upon subjects such as psychiatry, feminism, being transgender and Buddhism. Later in the month, Netflix released a music track titled Brainwave Symphony on Spotify. To produce it they subjected eight strangers to a series of various stimuli and they recorded their individual brainwaves using EEG sensors. After extracting a melody from each of them they arranged them in a way to produce a track which mirrors the escalating action of the season. In early August 2015, Netflix made available Sense8: Creating the World, a half-hour web television documentary, shot around the world, about the making of the first season of the series.
On May 3, 2016, publicity stills of the ongoing production of the second season were posted online, accompanied by a short message by Lana Wachowski introducing the #Road2Sense8 hashtag under which new pictures would be posted. On December 3, 2016, the Christmas special episode was screened at São Paulo’s Comic Con Experience, in advance of its Netflix premiere on December 23. The second episode of the second season was screened out of competition during the Series Mania festival in Paris, on April 18, 2017. On April 23, a screening of the second and third episodes took place in Chicago’s Music Box Theatre, in a benefit for the American Civil Liberties Union, followed by Lana Wachowski taking questions from the audience, and again on April 26, in the red carpet premiere of the second season, at New York City’s AMC Lincoln Square.
Several screenings of the series finale took place prior to its release on Netflix, on June 8, 2018. The first screening took place in The Music Box Theatre in Chicago, on May 25, as a benefit for EMILY’s List, followed by a Q&A session with Lana and select cast members. The second screening took place in the Latin America Memorial in São Paulo, on June 1, with several cast members attending. The red carpet premiere followed in ArcLight Hollywood, in Los Angeles, on June 7. Linda Perry made a guest appearance to perform “What’s Up?”. Netflix organized an event for the fans on the day of the special’s release, June 8, in Posillipo, in Naples, where a big portion of the special was filmed. Among other things, fans could try a slice of a special “Sense8” pizza that was created by famous pizza maker Gino Sorbillo with the help of the cast.
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
This article is about the television series. For the peninsula in Scotland, see The Oa. For other uses of the letters OA, see OA (disambiguation).
The OA is an American mystery drama web television series with science fiction, supernatural and fantasy elements. The OA debuted on Netflix on December 16, 2016. Created and executive produced by Brit Marling and Zal Batmanglij, the series is their third collaboration. The series consists of two seasons of eight episodes each, nearly all directed by Batmanglij, and is produced by Plan B Entertainment and Anonymous Content. In the series, Marling stars as a young woman named Prairie Johnson who resurfaces after having been missing for seven years. Prairie now calls herself “The OA” and can see, despite having been blind before her disappearance.
On February 8, 2017, Netflix renewed the series for a second season, dubbed “Part II”, that was released on March 22, 2019. Although the OA was planned by its creators to be a five-part story told in five seasons, on August 5, 2019, Netflix canceled the series after two seasons. The OA received generally favorable critical reception, averaging 77% on Part I and 92% on Part II on Rotten Tomatoes. The series’ directing, visuals and acting were often singled out, as was its social impact.
The series centers around Prairie Johnson, an adopted young woman who resurfaces after having been missing for seven years. Upon her return, Prairie calls herself “The OA” (for “Original Angel”), exhibits scars on her back, and can see, despite having been blind when she disappeared. The OA refuses to tell the FBI and her adoptive parents where she has been and how her eyesight was restored, and instead quickly assembles a team of five locals (four high school students and a teacher) to whom she reveals that information, also explaining her life story. Finally, she asks for their help to save the other missing people whom she claims she can rescue by opening a portal to another dimension.
The second season follows the OA as she traverses to another dimension and ends up in San Francisco to continue her search for her former captor Hap and her fellow captives, as Prairie crosses paths with private eye Karim Washington to assist in his investigation of the surreal disappearance of a missing girl that involves an abandoned house with a supernatural history and an online puzzle game. Meanwhile, in the original dimension, a series of unfortunate events propels the OA’s five companions to embark on a road trip across America to assist the OA on her journey.
The following actors appear in the series:
Brit Marling as Prairie Johnson / the OA / Nina Azarova / “Brit”
Emory Cohen as Homer Roberts
Scott Wilson as Abel Johnson, Prairie’s adoptive father (season 1, guest season 2)
Phyllis Smith as Betty “BBA” Broderick-Allen
Alice Krige as Nancy Johnson, Prairie’s adoptive mother (season 1, guest season 2)
Patrick Gibson as Steve Winchell / “Patrick Gibson”
Brendan Meyer as Jesse
Brandon Perea as Alfonso “French” Sosa
Ian Alexander as Buck/Michelle Vu
Jason Isaacs as Hunter Aloysius “Hap” Percy / Dr. Percy / “Jason Isaacs”
Kingsley Ben-Adir as Karim Washington (season 2)
Will Brill as Scott Brown (season 2, recurring season 1)
Sharon Van Etten as Rachel DeGrasso (season 2, recurring season 1)
Paz Vega as Renata Duarte (season 2, recurring season 1)
Chloe Levine as Angie (season 2, recurring season 1)
Hiam Abbass as Khatun (season 1)
Zoey Todorovsky as Nina Azarova, a young Prairie Johnson
Marcus Choi as Mr. Vu
Robert Eli as Ellis Gilchrist, a high school principal (season 1)
Nikolai Nikolaeff as Roman Azarov, Nina’s father
Sean Grandillo as Miles Brekov (season 1)
Zachary Gemino as Carlos Sosa, Alfonso’s brother
Riz Ahmed as Elias Rahim, an FBI trauma counselor
Robert Morgan as Stan Markham, a sheriff (season 1)
Michael Cumpsty as Leon Citro (season 1)
Bria Vinaite as Darmi (season 2)
Zendaya as Fola Uzaki (season 2)
Zoë Chao as Mo (season 2)
Irène Jacob as Élodie (season 2)
Eijiro Ozaki as Azrael / Old Night, a giant octopus (voice) (season 2)
Vincent Kartheiser as Pierre Ruskin (season 2)
Liz Carr as Marlow Rhodes (season 2)
Part I (2016)
Part II (2019)
The series was conceived by Brit Marling and Zal Batmanglij and they began working on the concept in December 2012. They spent two years working on The OA on their own, before pitching to studios. From the early stages of development onward, they were telling the story out loud and noting one another’s reactions to the story to refine it accordingly. They found it difficult to summarize the series in a written story, so they developed it aurally. When executives read the script of the first hour, they asked if the story “really [went] somewhere”. Marling and Batmanglij then began to tell the story from beginning to end, playing all the characters and acting out the big moments through many hours. They worked with Brad Pitt’s Plan B Entertainment, which connected with the story and shared notes before it went to networks and studios. Following a multiple-network bidding war, the series was first announced on March 5, 2015, when Netflix ordered eight one-hour long episodes with Plan B and Anonymous Content also on board. The announcement revealed that Marling would star, Batmanglij would direct, and both would write and executive produce. Marling and Batmanglij held similar positions in their previous two collaborations, Sound of My Voice and The East.
Rostam Batmanglij, Zal’s brother, worked as one of the composers on the series, and he also wrote its theme music. He previously composed for both Sound of My Voice and The East. Choreographer Ryan Heffington created The Movements, which are inspired by interpretive dance. Heffington first professionally worked with them on The East, and had been an acquaintance of both from earlier than that.
The final chapter of Part I includes a dedication to Allison Wilke. Wilke, also known professionally as A.W. Gryphon, was a producer on the series who died of breast cancer three days after the series was finished and a month before its release.
Cancellation and fan response
On August 5, 2019, Netflix canceled the series after two seasons, leaving the show with a cliffhanger ending. Marling wrote that she and Batmanglij were “deeply sad” that they would not be able to finish the show. Fans responded with a #SaveTheOA and #TheOAisReal campaign on Twitter, a Change.org petition, and by posting video of themselves performing The Movements from the show. Additionally, the OA fan base raised funds for a digital billboard in Times Square. Marling wrote that she was moved by the fan support. One fan went on a hunger strike to protest for the show’s return; Marling and Batmanglij visited her and offered her food and water. Some fans online have put forward a theory that the cancellation announcement was just a meta publicity stunt.
The first season of The OA garnered a polarized but generally positive response from critics. Rotten Tomatoes assigned the first season a 77% critical approval rating and an average rating of 7.59/10 based on 66 reviews, writing that “The OA is more than OK.” Metacritic, based on 17 reviews, assigned the series a rating of 61 out of 100, indicating “generally favorable reviews”. Most reviewers acknowledged the series’ ambition and praised its mystery and direction. Reviewers made both favorable and unfavorable comparisons to another Netflix Original, Stranger Things.
John Doyle of The Globe and Mail wrote, “The OA is Netflix’s strongest and strangest original production since Stranger Things. In terms of substantive, original drama, it transcends it. Mind you, it is unclassifiable in the context of drama, mystery, science-fiction and fantasy, since it is straddling all sorts of lines and blurring them. It is outright astounding and brilliant, too.” Tim Surette at TV Guide said that “the final moments of Episode 5 – probably the best episode of the first season – was some of the most reaffirming television I’ve ever seen, not just for the show but for life itself. I’ve never really had this kind of a relationship with a series while watching it, but it’s that experience that makes it well worth viewing.” New York Magazine’s review was entitled “Netflix’s The OA Is an Extraordinary, Binge-Worthy December Surprise”.
Tristram Fane Saunders of The Daily Telegraph gave a mixed review of 3 out of 5 stars and noted the series’ potential but criticized its similarity to fellow Netflix Original Stranger Things, claiming that the series was attempting to be “stranger than Stranger Things” but “on the basis of the first four episodes, the answer is a resounding no”. Saunders’s review also highlighted the series’ lack of originality and characterization, and derided the dialogue as “portentous [and] self-consciously literary”. It also criticized the slow pace as “glacial”. However, Saunders also acknowledged the series told an interesting and compelling story, writing that “The OA may be utter hokum, but you’ll still be hooked.” Daniel Fienberg of The Hollywood Reporter gave a negative review, stating that the series was “a failed, but not wholly worthless, experiment in TV auteurism”. Fienberg added “the problem, of course, is that telling you what The OA is vaguely like is just another tease and telling you what it actually is is a recipe for disappointment, because after an enticing and somewhat infuriating build-up, The OAbecomes something quite ludicrous as it stumbles toward a climax that is, if I’m generous, merely unearned and if I’m not being generous, a series of offensive overreaches.”
Variety published diverging opinions about the series: its TV critic at the time, Sonia Saraiya, gave the show a mixed-to-negative review that praised the direction and acting but opined that overall “it is hard to take The OA seriously”, detailing that “none of it makes any sense”, and concluded that “[a]s an exercise in vision, The OA is exciting. As that other thing — a television show — it’s an especially cryptic attempt to say very little of consequence.”. A few days later, on the other hand, the magazine’s chief film critic Peter Debruge wrote an extremely positive column with the headline “Why The OA is One of the Year’s Most Important Films”, stating that the show’s first season had “the most effective ending [he had] ever seen in a TV series”, and that its “final twist […] left [him] crying uncontrollably for nearly half an hour”.
The second season received very positive reviews upon its release. On Rotten Tomatoes, the second season has an approval rating of 92% based on 36 reviews, with an average rating of 7.7/10. The website’s critical consensus reads, “The OA’s second season provides satisfying answers to its predecessors’ most maddening enigmas, all while maintaining the singular ambience that fans have come to crave.” On Metacritic, it has a weighted average score of 70 out of 100, based on 6 critics, indicating “generally favorable reviews”. Critics acknowledged the second season’s vast improvements on its narrative and characterization, particularly praising its surrealism, directing and acting.
Empire Magazine crowned The OA the best TV show of 2019 (so far) in September of 2019. The Playlist stated in their review that: “The OA: Part II packs each frame so dense with detail, that not one second of the new season’s more-than-eight-hour runtime seems wasted, expositional, cheap, or unearned.” Jesse Scheden of IGN gave The OA: Part II a score of 8.8 out of 10, saying the season is “bigger, more ambitious and much weirder than its predecessor”. Rachel Syme of The New Republic praised the season, labeling the show as “the best, most inaccessible show on television”, saying that “[she wishes] more television was this unafraid to leave its audiences fumbling for understanding.”
Daniel Fienberg of The Hollywood Reporter wrote: “The only thing I’m sure of when it comes to The OA is that the process of watching and experiencing an episode is unlike the viewing of any other show on TV and, good or bad, there’s value in that.” Alex McLevy of The A.V. Club echoed that sentiment, saying “sacrificing your expectations of plausibility feels like a worthwhile price of admission.” Jen Chaney of New York Magazine called the season a mind-bender and praised the way it depicted the aftermath of a school shooting.
Ed Power of The Daily Telegraph, gave it 4 out of 5 stars, and wrote that the show “truly comes into its own when you stop attempting to piece together the storyline and instead submit to Marling and Batmanglij’s vision.” Emily Todd VanDerWerff of Vox, initially critical of the first season, wrote of the series: “over time, I kept thinking about it. And thinking about it. And thinking about it. Until I convinced myself that The OA is kind of genius, while simultaneously being incredibly silly.”Haleigh Foutch of Collider said, “Netflix has carved out a space for itself as a home for innovative genre storytelling, and The OA might just be their crowning achievement in that regard.”
Better Call Saul
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
This article is about the television series. For the Breaking Bad episode, see Better Call Saul (Breaking Bad). For the Homeland episode, see Better Call Saul (Homeland).
Better Call Saul is an American television crime drama series created by Vince Gilligan and Peter Gould. It is a spin-off prequel of Gilligan’s prior series Breaking Bad. Set in the early 2000s, Better Call Saul follows the story of con-man turned small-time lawyer, Jimmy McGill (Bob Odenkirk), beginning six years before the events of Breaking Bad, showing his transformation into the persona of criminal-for-hire Saul Goodman. Jimmy becomes the lawyer for former beat cop Mike Ehrmantraut (Jonathan Banks), whose relevant skill set allows him to enter the criminal underworld of drug trafficking in Albuquerque, New Mexico. The show premiered on AMC on February 8, 2015. The 10-episode fourth season aired between August and October 2018. The show has been renewed for a fifth season, which is scheduled to premiere on February 23, 2020.
Jimmy is initially working as a low-paid sole practitioner, with the back room of a nail salon as his home and office. His friend and romantic interest, Kim Wexler(Rhea Seehorn) works as a lawyer at the firm of Hamlin, Hamlin & McGill (HHM), where Jimmy and she were once employed in the mailroom. Partners at HHM include Jimmy’s nemesis, Howard Hamlin (Patrick Fabian), and brother, Chuck McGill (Michael McKean). Mike conducts illegal drug-related activity with Nacho Varga (Michael Mando) in addition to becoming right-hand man for drug lord Gus Fring (Giancarlo Esposito) who runs a fast food restaurant as a business front. Odenkirk, Banks, and Esposito are all reprising their roles from Breaking Bad.
Like its predecessor, Better Call Saul has received critical acclaim, with particular praise for its acting, characters, and cinematography; many critics have called it a worthy successor to Breaking Bad and one of the best prequels ever made. Some have also deemed it superior to its predecessor. It has garnered many nominations, including a Peabody Award, 23 Primetime Emmy Awards, seven Writers Guild of America Awards, five Critics’ Choice Television Awards, a Screen Actors Guild Award, and two Golden Globe Awards. The series premiere held the record for the highest-rated scripted series premiere in basic cable history at the time of its airing. Despite the initial popularity, Better Call Saul has not attained the same viewership numbers as Breaking Bad did at its highest.
Better Call Saul follows the life of the character Saul Goodman beginning about six years prior to the events of Breaking Bad. In 2002, Goodman, born as James “Jimmy” McGill, is a former con artist trying to follow a legitimate career as an aspiring lawyer in Albuquerque, New Mexico. After secretly completing law school and attaining admission to the bar, he unsuccessfully seeks to become an associate in the law firm in which his older brother Charles “Chuck” McGill is a senior partner. However, Jimmy’s work is frequently overshadowed by Chuck’s, and he struggles to find a way to prove himself, even with the help of an associate in the firm, Kim Wexler, with whom he also becomes romantically involved. At the same time, Jimmy takes care of Chuck, who claims to have electromagnetic hypersensitivity, a condition that makes him physically ill in the presence of anything with an electrical component and has caused him to take an extended leave from his firm and regular law work. Interspersed among Jimmy’s activities are the prior histories of other Breaking Bad characters, including Mike Ehrmantraut, a former police officer who becomes involved in illegal drug trafficking schemes, and drug kingpins Hector Salamanca and Gus Fring, who help distribute drugs illegally brought to the area from Mexico.
The series also provides brief glimpses of Saul’s fate after the events of “Granite State”, the penultimate episode of Breaking Bad, in which Saul fears for his own safety and takes on a new identity in Omaha, Nebraska as Gene, the manager of a Cinnabon store. In Better Call Saul flash forwards, “Gene” reminisces about his past, but remains paranoid that someone might discover his true identity.
The fourth season features scenes taking place closer to the time of events in Breaking Bad, which was set in 2008; the story, as described by co-creator Vince Gilligan, “brings us into the world—or at least points us on a path toward the world of Walter White and the territory of Walter White”. In “Quite a Ride”, the cold open takes place concurrent to events near the end of Breaking Bad, with Jimmy as Saul destroying documents and taking money from the Saul Goodman office made memorable in that series.
Vince Gilligan and Peter Gould began planning a television spinoff of Breaking Bad as early as 2009. While filming “Full Measure”, Gilligan asked Bob Odenkirk, the actor of series character Saul Goodman, what he thought of a spinoff of the show. In July 2012 Gilligan hinted at a possible Goodman spinoff, stating that he liked “the idea of a lawyer show in which the main lawyer will do anything it takes to stay out of a court of law”, including settling on the courthouse steps.Gilligan noted that over the course of Breaking Bad, there were a lot of “what if”s their team considered, such as if the show won a Primetime Emmy Award, or if people would buy “Los Pollos Hermanos” T-shirts. The staff did not expect these events to come to fruition, but after they did, they started considering a spin-off featuring Saul as a thought experiment. Further, Saul’s character on Breaking Bad became much more developed than the staff had originally planned, as he was originally slated to appear in only three episodes; with the growth of Saul’s character, Gilligan saw ways to explore Saul’s backstory.
In April 2013, Better Call Saul was confirmed to be in development by Gilligan and Gould; the latter wrote the Breaking Badepisode that introduced the character.
Bob Odenkirk stars as lawyer Jimmy McGill (known as Saul Goodman in Breaking Bad). In January 2014, it was announced that Jonathan Banks would reprise his Breaking Bad role as Mike Ehrmantraut and be a series regular.
New cast members include Michael McKean as McGill’s elder brother Chuck. McKean previously guest-starred in an episode of Odenkirk’s Mr. Show and Gilligan’s X-Files episode “Dreamland”. The cast also includes Patrick Fabian as Howard Hamlin, Rhea Seehorn as Kimberly “Kim” Wexler, and Michael Mando as Ignacio “Nacho” Varga. In October 2014, Kerry Condon was cast as Stacey Ehrmantraut, Mike’s daughter-in-law. In November 2014, it was announced that Julie Ann Emery and Jeremy Shamos had been cast as Betsy and Craig Kettleman, described as “the world’s squarest outlaws.”
Going into Season 3, it was announced that Giancarlo Esposito would return to play Gus Fring.
The showrunners have teased that “familiar faces” from Breaking Bad will make appearances during Season 4. They will also cast an actor for the character “Lalo”, mentioned only by name in the episode “Better Call Saul” episode of Breaking Bad.Both Bryan Cranston and Aaron Paul said, as of Season 3, they are both open to reappearing on the show as Walter Whiteand Jesse Pinkman, respectively, if asked, believing that Gilligan would have a sufficiently good reason to bring them in.Paul had previously mentioned the possibility of a cameo during Season 1 but this fell through. Anna Gunn also mentioned a “talk” with Gilligan over possible guest appearances as Skyler White. Dean Norris, another Breaking Badalumnus, stated he could not be part of the earlier seasons, partly due to his involvement in the CBS series Under the Dome. Gilligan said that by Season 3 that show had been on long enough that any reuse of Breaking Bad characters would be more than “just a cameo or an Alfred Hitchcock walkthrough”, and that their appearances would be necessary for the story.
As of July 2013, the series had yet to be greenlighted. Netflix was one of many interested distributors, but ultimately a deal was made between AMC and Breaking Bad production company Sony Pictures Television. Gilligan and Gould serve as co-showrunners and Gilligan directed the pilot. Former Breaking Bad writers Thomas Schnauz and Gennifer Hutchison joined the writing staff, with Schnauz serving as co-executive producer and Hutchison as supervising producer. Also on the writing staff are Bradley Paul, and Gordon Smith, who was a writer’s assistant on Breaking Bad.
In developing the series, the producers considered making the show a half-hour comedy, but ultimately chose an hour-long format more typical of a drama. In October 2014, Odenkirk called the show “85 percent drama, 15 percent comedy.”During his appearance on Talking Bad, Odenkirk noted that Saul was one of the most popular characters on the show, speculating that the audience likes the character because he is the program’s least hypocritical figure, and is good at his job. Better Call Saul also employs Breaking Bad’s signature time jumps.
As filming began on June 2, 2014, Gilligan expressed some concern regarding the possible disappointment from the series’ turnout, in terms of audience reception.
The first teaser trailer debuted on AMC on August 10, 2014, and confirmed its premiere date of February 2015. In November 2014, AMC announced the series would have a two-night premiere; the first episode aired on Sunday, February 8, 2015, at 10:00 pm (ET), and then moved into its regular time slot the following night, airing Mondays at 10:00 pm. In May 2015, Gilligan confirmed that more of the prominent characters from Breaking Bad would be making guest appearances in season 2, but remained vague on which characters were likely to be seen.
In June 2014, prior to the series’ launch, AMC had renewed the series for a second season of 13 episodes to premiere in early 2016; however, it was later reduced to 10 episodes. The second season premiered on February 15, 2016.
In March 2016, AMC announced that Better Call Saul was renewed for a 10-episode third season which premiered April 10, 2017. AMC renewed the series for a 10-episode fourth season in June 2017 which premiered on August 6, 2018.The series was renewed for a fifth season on July 28, 2018, just prior to the airing of the fourth season. The fifth season is not expected to air until 2020; according to AMC’s Sarah Barnett, the delay was “driven by talent needs”. Filming for the fifth season started in April 2019, and finished in September 2019. AMC later affirmed the ten-episode fifth season will start airing with a special Sunday broadcast on February 23, 2020, with following episodes to air on Mondays.
Like its predecessor, Better Call Saul is set and filmed primarily in and around Albuquerque, New Mexico. The production used sets at Albuquerque Studios.
Cast and characters
Bob Odenkirk (Jimmy McGill)
Jonathan Banks(Mike Ehrmantraut)
Rhea Seehorn (Kim Wexler)
Patrick Fabian(Howard Hamlin)
Michael Mando(Nacho Varga)
Michael McKean(Chuck McGill)
Giancarlo Esposito(Gus Fring)
Tony Dalton (Lalo Salamanca)
Main article: List of Breaking Bad and Better Call Saul characters
Bob Odenkirk as Saul Goodman/Jimmy McGill/Gene Takovic, a lawyer and a former scam artist, who becomes involved with the criminal world.
Jonathan Banks as Mike Ehrmantraut, a former Philadelphia police officer working as a parking lot attendant at the Albuquerque court house, and later a private investigator, bodyguard and “cleaner”.
Rhea Seehorn as Kim Wexler, a lawyer formerly working at the Hamlin, Hamlin & McGill (HHM) law firm, now running her own practice, who is Jimmy’s girlfriend and confidante.
Patrick Fabian as Howard Hamlin, the managing partner at Hamlin, Hamlin & McGill, first appearing as Jimmy’s nemesis, until it becomes clear that he acts under Charles McGill’s orders.
Michael Mando as Nacho Varga, who works in his father’s upholstery shop and is also an intelligent, ambitious member of Hector Salamanca’s gang.
Michael McKean as Chuck McGill, Jimmy’s elder brother and a founding partner of HHM who is confined to his home by electromagnetic hypersensitivity and expresses disdain for his brother’s legal abilities. (seasons 1–3, recurring season 4)
Giancarlo Esposito as Gus Fring, a methamphetamine distributor who uses his fast foodrestaurant chain Los Pollos Hermanos as a front. (seasons 3–present)
Tony Dalton as Lalo Salamanca, nephew of Hector and cousin of Tuco, Leonel, and Marco, who helps run the family drug business after Hector’s stroke. (season 5, recurring season 4)
Introduced in season 1
Kerry Condon as Stacey Ehrmantraut, Mike’s widowed daughter-in-law and the mother of Kaylee Ehrmantraut.
Faith Healey (season 1) and Abigail Zoe Lewis (season 2–present) as Kaylee Ehrmantraut, Mike’s granddaughter.
Eileen Fogarty as Mrs. Nguyen, owner of a nail salon which houses Jimmy’s law office (and sometime home) in its back room.
Peter Diseth as Bill Oakley, a deputy district attorney.
Joe DeRosa as Dr. Caldera, a veterinarian with ties to the criminal underworld.
Dennis Boutsikaris as Rich Schweikart, the attorney for Sandpiper Crossing.
Mark Proksch as Daniel “Pryce” Wormald, a drug company employee who begins supplying Nacho and hires Mike as security.
Brandon K. Hampton as Ernesto, Chuck’s assistant who works at HHM.
Josh Fadem as Camera Guy, or Joey Dixon, one of the three UNM film students who help Jimmy film various projects.
Julian Bonfiglio as Sound Guy, one of the three UNM film students Jimmy hires for various film projects.
Hayley Holmes as Drama Girl, one of the three UNM film students Jimmy hires for various projects.
Jeremy Shamos and Julie Ann Emery as Craig and Betsy Kettleman, a county treasurer and his wife, accused of embezzlement.
Steven Levine and Daniel Spenser Levine as Lars and Cal Lindholm, twin skateboarders and small-time scam artists.
Míriam Colón as Abuelita, Tuco’s grandmother and Hector’s mother.
Barry Shabaka Henley as Detective Sanders, a Philadelphia cop who was formerly partnered with Mike on the force.
Mel Rodriguez as Marco Pasternak, Jimmy’s best friend and partner-in-crime in Cicero, Illinois.
Clea DuVall as Dr. Cruz, a doctor who treats Chuck and suspects his condition is psychosomatic.
Jean Effron as Irene Landry, an elderly client of Jimmy McGill overcharged by the Sandpiper Crossing elder care home.
Introduced in season 2
Ed Begley Jr. as Clifford Main, managing partner at Davis & Main.
Omar Maskati as Omar, Jimmy’s assistant at Davis & Main.
Jessie Ennis as Erin Brill, a lawyer at Davis & Main who is ordered to shadow Jimmy.
Juan Carlos Cantu as Manuel Varga, Nacho’s father who owns an upholstery shop.
Vincent Fuentes as Arturo Colon, a criminal associate of Hector Salamanca (seasons 2–4).
Rex Linn as Kevin Wachtell, chairman of Mesa Verde Bank and Trust and a client of HHM and Kim.
Cara Pifko as Paige Novick, senior legal counsel for Mesa Verde Bank and Trust and a friend of Kim.
Ann Cusack as Rebecca Bois, Chuck’s ex-wife.
Manuel Uriza as Ximenez Lecerda, an associate of Hector Salamanca.
Introduced in season 3
Bonnie Bartlett as Helen, Irene’s friend and member of the affected class in the Sandpiper lawsuit.
Kimberly Hebert Gregory as ADA Kyra Hay.
Tamara Tunie as Anita, a member of Mike and Stacey’s support group.
Introduced in season 4
Rainer Bock as Werner Ziegler, an engineer hired by Gus to plan and oversee construction of his meth “superlab”.
Ben Bela Böhm as Kai, a rebellious member of the crew Werner Ziegler assembles for the construction of Gus’s meth “superlab”.
Stefan Kapičić as Casper, a member of Werner Ziegler’s team.
Poorna Jagannathan as Maureen Bruckner, a specialist from Johns Hopkins who flew to Albuquerque to treat Hector after Gus arranged for a “generous grant.”
Breaking Bad characters
Raymond Cruz as Tuco Salamanca, a ruthless, psychopathic drug distributor in the South Valley. (seasons 1–2)
Cesar García as No-Doze, Tuco’s henchman. (season 1)
Jesús Payán Jr. as Gonzo, Tuco’s henchman. (season 1)
T.C. Warner as Nurse (season 1)
Kyle Bornheimer as Ken, an arrogant, self-absorbed stockbroker (season 2)
Stoney Westmoreland as Officer Saxton, an Albuquerque Police Department officer (season 2)
Jim Beaver as Lawson, a black market weapons dealer in Albuquerque (season 2)
Maximino Arciniega as Domingo “Krazy-8” Molina, one of Tuco’s distributors (seasons 2–present)
Mark Margolis as Hector Salamanca, Tuco’s uncle and high-ranking member of the cartel (seasons 2–present)
Debrianna Mansini as Fran, a waitress at Loyola’s Diner (seasons 2, 4)
Daniel and Luis Moncada as Leonel and Marco Salamanca, Tuco’s cousins and Hector’s nephews who are hitmen for the cartel (seasons 2, 4)
Jennifer Hasty as Stephanie Doswell, a real estate agent (season 2)
Tina Parker as Francesca Liddy, Jimmy’s receptionist (seasons 3-present)
Jeremiah Bitsui as Victor, Gus’s henchman (seasons 3–present)
Ray Campbell as Tyrus Kitt, a henchman on Gus Fring’s payroll (seasons 3–present)
JB Blanc as Dr. Barry Goodman, a doctor on Gus Fring’s payroll (seasons 3–present)
Steven Bauer as Don Eladio Vuente, the head of the Juarez drug cartel (season 3)
Javier Grajeda as Juan Bolsa, a high-level member of the Juárez drug cartel (seasons 3–present)
Lavell Crawford as Huell Babineaux, a professional pickpocket hired by Jimmy (seasons 3–present)
Laura Fraser as Lydia Rodarte-Quayle, a Madrigal Electromotive executive and associate of Gus Fring (seasons 3–present)
Eric Steining as Nick, a member of Gus’s security team, later managed by Mike. (season 4)
Franc Ross as Ira, a burglar Jimmy hires; in Breaking Bad, he is the owner of Vamonos Pest who appears in “Hazard Pay”. (season 4)
David Costabile as Gale Boetticher, a chemist who is consulted by Gus (season 4)
Main article: List of Better Call Saul episodes
Season 1 (2015)
Main article: Better Call Saul (season 1)
Tired of public defender work, Jimmy works to represent the Kettlemans, who are accused of embezzlement. Jimmy cares for his brother Chuck, who is housebound without electricity because he believes he has electromagnetic hypersensitivity. While pursuing an elder law career, Jimmy discovers clients being defrauded by the Sandpiper retirement home and begins a class action lawsuit with Chuck. When the case grows, Chuck suggests giving it to HHM, but secretly arranges with Howard to cut Jimmy out. The case continues growing and HHM brings on Davis & Main. Unhappy at Howard’s treatment of him, Kim recommends Jimmy to D&M.
Season 2 (2016)
Main article: Better Call Saul (season 2)
Jimmy works at D&M but quits after being reprimanded for his client outreach methods. Kim is demoted because of Jimmy’s actions. To reclaim her status, she secures Mesa Verde Bank as a client for HHM but Howard denies her credit. Kim and Jimmy practice in a shared office. Jimmy secretly causes Chuck to make an error that delays new branch construction, so Mesa Verde drops HHM to hire Kim. Nacho hires Mike to remove Tuco from the Salamanca organization. Mike goads Tuco into fighting and Tuco is imprisoned. Hector is suspicious so Mike prepares to assassinate him but is interrupted.
Season 3 (2017)
Main article: Better Call Saul (season 3)
Chuck discovers Jimmy’s fraud and tricks him into confessing, leading to suspension of Jimmy’s law license. Chuck’s ouster at HHM leads to his suicide. Gus stops Mike from killing Hector. Mike attacks Hector’s trucks and steals $250,000 from one. Mike asks for help laundering the money. Gus arranges for Mike’s hire as a contracted security expert at Madrigal and payment of monthly consulting fees. Hector plans to take over Manuel’s business so Nacho attempts to kill Hector by changing his angina medication for a placebo. Hector suffers a stroke and Gus’ first aid saves him, though he remains comatose.
Season 4 (2018)
Main article: Better Call Saul (season 4)
Jimmy regains his outgoing demeanor after Howard shoulders blame for Chuck’s death. Jimmy manages a cell phone store but makes more reselling prepaid phones. His reinstatement request is denied over lack of remorse for Chuck. After faking mourning, he successfully appeals, but reveals he’s going to practice as Saul Goodman. Gus learns Nacho attempted to kill Hector and blackmails him into undermining the Salamancas. Mike escorts engineers who evaluate the laundry’s potential as a meth lab and Gus hires Werner to oversee construction. Hector recovers mentally and can move his right index finger. Lalo Salamanca arrives to run Hector’s business.
Talking Saul is a live aftershow hosted by Chris Hardwick, which features guests discussing episodes of Better Call Saul. The show uses the same format as Talking Dead, Talking Bad, and other similar aftershows also hosted by Hardwick. AMC announced that Talking Saul would air after the second season Better Call Saul premiere on February 15, 2016, and again after the second-season finale on April 18, 2016. It returned following the season 3 premiere and finale.
Season 1 (2016)
These episodes discuss season two of Better Call Saul.
Season 2 (2017)
These episodes discuss season three of Better Call Saul.
In December 2013, Netflix announced that the entire first season would be available for streaming in the U.S. after the airing of the first-season finale, and in Latin America and Europe each episode would be available a few days after the episode airs in the U.S. However, the first season was not released on Netflix in the U.S. until February 1, 2016. Internationally, episodes of the second season became available the day after they aired in the U.S.
Netflix is the exclusive video-on-demand provider for the series and makes the content available in all its territories, except for Australia and New Zealand. In Australia, Better Call Saul premiered on the streaming service Stan on February 9, 2015, acting as the service’s flagship program. In New Zealand, the show is exclusive to the New Zealand-based subscription video-on-demand service, Lightbox. The episodes were available for viewing within three days of broadcast in the U.S.
In the United Kingdom and Ireland, the series was acquired by Netflix on December 16, 2013, and the first episode premiered on February 9, 2015, with the second episode released the following day. Every subsequent episode was released each week thereafter. In India, the series is broadcast on Colors Infinity within 24 hours of the U.S. broadcast.
The series premiere drew in 4.4 million and 4 million in the 18–49 and 25–54 demographics, respectively, and received an overall viewership of 6.9 million. This was the record for the highest-rated scripted series premiere in basic cable history, until it was surpassed later the same year by another AMC series, Fear the Walking Dead.
Better Call Saul has received widespread critical acclaim.
Main article: Better Call Saul (season 1) § Reception
The first season of Better Call Saul received critical acclaim, particularly for its acting, writing, and directing with many critics calling it a worthy successor to Breaking Bad. On Rotten Tomatoes, the first season has a rating of 98%, based on 66 reviews, with an average rating of 8.16/10. The site’s critical consensus reads, “Better Call Saul is a quirky, dark character study that manages to stand on its own without being overshadowed by the series that spawned it.” On the review aggregator website Metacritic, the first season has a score of 78 out of 100, based on 43 critics, indicating “generally favorable reviews”.
Main article: Better Call Saul (season 2) § Reception
The second season, much like the previous, received critical acclaim. On Rotten Tomatoes, the second season has a score of 97%, based on 31 reviews, with an average rating of 8.7/10. The site’s critical consensus reads, “Better Call Saul continues to tighten its hold on viewers with a batch of episodes that inject a surge of dramatic energy while showcasing the charms of its talented lead.” On Metacritic, the second season has a score of 85 out of 100, based on 18 critics, indicating “universal acclaim”.
Main article: Better Call Saul (season 3) § Reception
The third season, much like the previous two, received critical acclaim, particularly for the character development of Jimmy McGill. On Rotten Tomatoes, the third season has an approval rating of 97% based on 38 reviews, with an average rating of 8.78/10. The site’s critical consensus is, “Better Call Saul shows no signs of slipping in season 3, as the introduction of more familiar faces causes the inevitable transformation of its lead to pick up exciting speed.” On Metacritic, the season has a score of 87 out of 100, based on 18 critics, indicating “universal acclaim”.
Main article: Better Call Saul (season 4) § Reception
The fourth season has also received critical acclaim. On Rotten Tomatoes, the season has a 99% approval rating with an average score of 8.93 out of 10 based on 36 reviews. The site’s critical consensus states, “Well-crafted and compelling as ever, Better Call Saul deftly balances the show it was and the one it will inevitably become.” On Metacritic, the season has a score of 87 out of 100, based on 16 reviews, indicating “universal acclaim”.
Awards and accolades
The first season was released on Blu-ray and DVD in region 1 on November 10, 2015; bonus features include audio commentaries for every episode, uncensored episodes, deleted scenes, gag reel, and several behind-the-scenes featurettes. A limited edition Blu-ray set was also released with 3D packaging and a postcard vinyl of the Better Call Saul theme song by Junior Brown. The second season was released on Blu-ray and DVD in region 1 on November 15, 2016; bonus features include audio commentaries for every episode and several behind-the-scenes featurettes. The third season was released on Blu-ray and DVD in region 1 on January 16, 2018; bonus features include audio commentaries for every episode and several behind-the-scenes featurettes. The fourth season was released on Blu-ray and DVD in region 1 on May 7, 2019; bonus features include audio commentary for every episode and several behind-the-scenes featurettes.
AMC has released two digital comic books for Better Call Saul. The first, titled Better Call Saul: Client Development, released in February 2015, in advance of the series premiere, details the history of Saul and Mike, acting as a spin-off of the Breaking Bad episode that introduced Saul. In February 2016, in advance of the second-season premiere, AMC released Better Call Saul: Saul Goodman and the Justice Consortium in the Clutches of the Judgernaut![141
Colony (TV series)
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
This article is about the 2016 American TV series. For other uses, see Colony (disambiguation).
Colony is an American science fiction drama television series created by Carlton Cuse and Ryan J. Condal, starring Josh Holloway and Sarah Wayne Callies. A ten-episode first season premiered with an online preview release of the first episode on USA Network’s website on December 15, 2015, following the launch of a game-like website to promote the show. The series had its broadcast premiere on USA Network on January 14, 2016. In April 2017, Colony was renewed for a third season which premiered on May 2, 2018. On July 21, 2018, USA announced they had cancelled the series after three seasons.
In a dystopian near-future Los Angeles, residents live under a regime of military occupation by an organization known as the Transitional Authority. The Authority serves an extraterrestrial group referred to as the “Hosts”, about whom little is known. The symbol of the collaborating forces features stylized birds of prey, or raptors, which gives rise to their nickname, the “Raps”. The Authority enforces Host policy via militarized police called Homeland Security and nicknamed the “Redhats”.
The Hosts took control on a day known simply as the “Arrival”. Late that day, massive rectangular blocks descended from the sky, linking together to build walls dividing the city. One of these walls, 20 to 30 stories tall, many meters thick, and many miles in length, surrounds the central part of Los Angeles, where the series is set. Other similar walls have been constructed around neighbouring urban areas, called “blocs”, with the whole referred to as a “colony”. Traffic passes through the walls at heavily secured checkpoints, called “gateways”, which allow the Authority to strictly control the movement of people and the distribution of consumables, such as food and fuel, which are rationed. The geographical extent of the alien invasion is unclear, but it is presumably worldwide.
A privileged class of elites, drawn by the Hosts from the local population, are denigrated by some bloc residents as collaborators. The ruling forces maintain control through the separation of loved ones, shoot-on-sight curfews, forced disappearances, random checkpoints, frequent electronic identity checks, limitation of motor vehicle usage (most people walk or ride bicycles), pervasive visual propaganda, slave labor in a place called the “Factory” (later revealed to be located on the Earth’s moon to mine radioactive materials), and electronic surveillance with Host-provided drone aircraft that launch from the wall. Some medical problems, such as diabetes, have been “deemed unworthy for treatment” by the Hosts, to cull the population.
A resistance movement is referred to as both the “Resistance” and the “Insurgency”. An informal barter-based black market has also sprung up, trading in surplus materials and home-produced goods.
Allusion to historical events
In a May 21, 2015, interview with Collider, executive producer Carlton Cuse stated that the show was “conceived as a metaphor for France during the Nazi occupation”. In a separate interview with Entertainment Weekly, co-creator Ryan Condal detailed that the original concept behind Colony was that they “were actually inspired by Nazi-occupied Paris during WWII, where people went on living their lives, having coffee in street-side cafes while Nazi officers marched along the roads”.
The series begins less than a year after the arrival of aliens who occupy Earth. It follows the Bowmans and their extended family in Los Angeles. Their son, Charlie, was on a school sports trip and was separated from them when alien walls sectioned off part of the city. The father, Will Bowman, is a former FBI agent and retired Army Ranger who reluctantly joins the Redhats (humans collaborating with the aliens) and is tasked with tracking down members of the resistance, after being threatened that he and his family would be sent to “the Factory” if he did not comply. Unbeknownst to Will, his wife, Katie, is an operative in the resistance. She later reveals this, and they begin to trade information. Their son, Bram, discovers a way under the wall, and later joins a rival resistance group.
Cast and characters
The cast at Camp Conival presentation for Colony offsite at Petco Park during San Diego Comic-Con 2016. From left: Adrian Pasdar, Tory Kittles, Sarah Wayne-Callies, Ryan Condal, Peter Jacobson, Amanda Righetti and Josh Holloway
Josh Holloway as Will Bowman: A former U.S. Army Ranger and FBI Special Agent initially working under the alias Billy “Sully” Sullivan as a truck driver and mechanic. To protect his family from being sent to the Factory, and to find his missing son Charlie, Will starts working for the Redhats hunting down Resistance members.
Sarah Wayne Callies as Katie Bowman: Will’s wife and a secret Resistance operative. She owns and operates “The Yonk”, a New Orleans-themed bar.
Peter Jacobson as Alan Snyder: The Proxy Governor of the Los Angeles Bloc and an unrepentant Collaborator. Snyder claims to be a former Stanford University provost but is later revealed to be the corrupt purchasing manager of a small community college. Snyder is removed as Proxy and made warden of a labor camp outside the bloc.
Amanda Righetti as Madeline “Maddie” Kenner (seasons 1–2): Katie’s younger sister
Tory Kittles as Eric Broussard: A former U.S. Marine Corps Force Recon, CIA assassin, and private military contractor. Now a resistance operative, he infiltrates the Redhats and is Katie’s main Resistance contact.
Alex Neustaedter as Bram Bowman: Will and Katie’s teenaged son
Isabella Crovetti as Grace Kathryn “Gracie” Bowman: Will and Katie’s young daughter
Jacob Buster as Charlie Bowman (guest season 1; season 2–3): Will and Katie’s younger son, who was separated from the rest of his family a year before the start of the series, when the wall went up. He is found by Will at the beginning of season 2 and reunited with his family.
Kim Rhodes as Rachel (season 1): A doctor and Resistance cell member
Paul Guilfoyle as Alexander Quayle (season 1): A former CIA Berlin station chief and Defense Intelligence Agency officer turned Los Angeles Resistance leader
Cooper J. Friedman as Hudson (seasons 1–2): Madeline’s diabetic son
Carl Weathers as Bolton “Beau” Miller (season 1): A former San Francisco Police Department officer turned Homeland Security officer and Will Bowman’s partner
Ally Walker as Helena Goldwyn: Chief of staff and later Governor-General of the Los Angeles Colony of which the Bloc is a part
Kathy Baker as Phyllis (season 1): Will’s boss at Homeland Security whom he suspects (and she implies) is a former CIA agent
Kathleen Rose Perkins as Jennifer McMahon (seasons 1–2): A former online dating service database administrator turned Homeland Security agent, below Phyllis and above Will and Beau
Gonzalo Menendez as Captain Lagarza (season 1): A Redhat officer
Erin Way as Lindsey (seasons 1–2): The Proxy government-provided tutor for Gracie Bowman
Kathryn Morris as Charlotte Burgess (season 1): A cultural director in the Green Zone who becomes Maddie’s boss
Adrian Pasdar as Nolan Burgess (seasons 1–2): Charlotte’s husband and an important player in the politics of the occupational government
Bethany Joy Lenz as Morgan (season 2):[a] A software engineer and Los Angeles Resistance member
Charlie Bewley as Eckhart (seasons 1–2): A resistance cell member
Mac Brandt as Sgt. Jenkins (season 2): A labour camp guard
Christian Clemenson as Dan Bennett (season 2): The new head of Homeland Security
Toby Huss as Bob Burke (season 2): Homeland Security Investigator and Will Bowman’s new partner
William Russ as Hennessey (season 2): An ex-spy
Keiko Agena as Betsy (season 2): A co-worker of Will Bowman and Jennifer at Homeland Security
Meta Golding as Noa (season 2): A member of a resistance cell from outside the walls
John Hoogenakker as Scott Garland (season 3): A former FBI Agent and a Greyhat Lieutenant with the charge of hunting the resistance in the California Woodlands
Wayne Brady as Everett Kynes (season 3): Head of the autonomous Seattle colony
Peyton List as Amy Leonard (season 3): A doctor and Resistance dispatcher who works with Broussard but distrusts Will
^ Guest star Thora Birch played Morgan in season 1
Season 1 (2016)
^ The pilot episode was released online on December 15, 2015.
Season 2 (2017)
Season 3 (2018)
The show has received generally positive reviews. On Metacritic it holds a score of 69/100, based on 22 reviews, indicating “generally favorable reviews.” On Rotten Tomatoes, it holds a score of 80%, based on 24 reviews with an average rating of 6.4/10. The critics’ consensus reads: “Colony offers an engaging enough narrative, a few scares, and an overall good time, even if none of it is particularly original.”
Stephen King praised the series saying: “In a year of remarkable TV, Colony is really something special: smart, suspenseful, subversive… thought-provoking.”
The I-Land is an American science fiction thriller web television miniseries created by Anthony Salter. The series is executive produced by Neil LaBute, Chad Oakes and Mike Frislev. The series stars Kate Bosworth, Natalie Martinez, Ronald Peet, Kyle Schmid, Gilles Geary, Sibylla Deen, Anthony Lee Medina, Kota Eberhardt, Michelle Veintimilla and Alex Pettyfer. It was released on September 12, 2019 on Netflix.
2Cast and characters
The I-Land begins when “ten people wake up on a treacherous island with no memory of who they are or how they got there, they set off on a trek to try to get back home. They soon discover this world is not as it seems. Faced with the island’s extreme psychological and physical challenges, they must rise to their better selves — or die as their worst ones.”
Cast and characters
Kate Bosworth as KC
Natalie Martinez as Chase
Ronald Peet as Cooper
Kyle Schmid as Moses
Gilles Geary as Mason
Sibylla Deen as Blair
Anthony Lee Medina as Donovan
Kota Eberhardt as Taylor
Michelle Veintimilla as Hayden
Alex Pettyfer as Brody
Clara Wong as Carol
Keilyn Durrel Jones as Carter
Bruce McGill as Warden Wells
María Conchita Alonso
On September 28, 2018, it was announced that Netflix had given the production a series order for a seven-episode first season. Neil LaBute was set to serve as co-director, writer and showrunner for the miniseries along with directorial credits from Jonathan Scarfe and writing credits from Lucy Teitler. Executive producers were expected to include LaBute, Chad Oakes, and Mike Frislev with Lucy Teitler and Jonathan Scarfe serving as co-executive producers and Kate Bosworth acting as a producer. Production companies involved with the miniseries were slated to consist of Nomadic Pictures Entertainment. The production company reportedly spent a budget of $14 million for the first season, with each episode costing $2 million. On August 20, 2019, it was reported that the miniseries was set to be released on September 12, 2019.
Alongside the series order announcement, it was confirmed that Kate Bosworth, Natalie Martinez, and Alex Pettyfer would star in the miniseries. In October 2018, it was announced that Kyle Schmid had been cast in a starring role. In December 2018, it was reported that Clara Wong had joined the cast in a recurring capacity. In August 2019, Gilles Geary joined the main cast in the role of Mason. In the same month, it was confirmed that Michelle Veintimilla, Kota Eberhardt, Sibylla Deen, Ronald Peet and Anthony Lee Medina will star in the miniseries.
Filming for the first season took place in Pinewood Indomina Studios, Dominican Republic, San Pedro De Macoris and Las Terrenas, Samaná, Dominican Republic from October 15, 2018 to December 19, 2018.
On August 20, 2019, the teaser trailer for the miniseries was released. On August 29, 2019, the official trailer for the miniseries was released.
Rim of the World
is a 2019 American science fiction adventure film directed by McG from a screenplay by Zack Stentz. It stars Jack Gore, Miya Cech, Benjamin Flores Jr. and Alessio Scalzotto. The film, which was Stentz’ modern take on the kid-centered film of the 1980s, was streamed on Netflix on May 24, 2019. It was the most watched content in the SVOD service in the U.K. the week it was released, overtaking the series Dead to Me and Riverdale.
Three young teens, ZhenZhen, Alex, and Dariush, attend a summer camp in Southern California called Rim of the World. ZhenZhen is from China who runs away from her hated father. Dariush is the funny African American that is the son of a millionaire that has gone bankrupt, and Alex is the timid and scared son to a single widowed mother because his father died from a house fire. During a canoeing trip the three wander off in the woods and find another young teen, Gabriel, that is an escaped juvenile delinquent. While deep in the woods, the group sees the sky turning orange, hears explosions and receive alerts on their phones to avoid the metropolitan area. The group of four return to camp to find that the camp has evacuated except for Conrad, a drunk counselor that they cannot seem to wake. Overhead, US aircraft are fighting alien ships. An escape pod from the International Space Station crashes to Earth with a dying astronaut inside. She gives Alex a key which she says needs to get to a NASA station, JPL, in order for the aliens to be stopped. The alien kills the astronaut and then attacks the group along with its alien dog. The group manages to kill the alien dog with fire from the escape pod, which only seems to anger the alien. The alien is then shot by aircraft, but not before killing Conrad.
With the key in hand, the group escapes the camp while the alien is seemingly dead. They make their way to the Sheriffs Office where they discover that Asia and Europe have been destroyed and the use of nuclear weapons in the Los Angeles Basin has been approved. While at the Sheriffs Office they discover an inmate, Lou, that has been left behind. Alex and ZhenZhen decide to release him before the group continues on their way to JPL. After leaving the Sheriffs Office the group is found by some Marines who take the key and put the children on a bus to take them to safety. Aliens attack the convoy, killing the soldiers. The group takes the key back and continues on their way to JPL. After stopping to rest for the night, they are attacked by a gang of masked individuals led by Lou from the Sheriff’s Office. He agrees to let the teens go if Alex gives him the key. Alex refuses and right before Lou attacks him, the alien that died at the camp but has regenerated itself ambushes the group, killing Lou and allowing the teens to escape.
The teens finally make it to JPL only to find that the doctor who needs the key is dead. The teens are able to make radio contact with a general who explains that the key can be used to destroy the alien mothership in orbit via a Cold War defense project name Excalibur. ZhenZhen goes into the basement to start the generators while Alex goes on the roof to the communication tower. Dariush and Gabriel stay in the command center of JPL to insert the key into the systems. Alex is attacked on the roof by the alien and ZhenZhen is attacked in the basement by an alien dog but manages to lock it in the basement and get back to the command room to help Gabriel insert the launch key since Dariush has passed out from blood loss due to an injury.
After successfully inserting the launch keys, the General warns ZhenZhen, Dariush, and Gabriel to get out of the building because JPL is not safe and there are two units on the way to get them. In the meantime, Alex has managed to lure the alien into a highly flammable engine test room and burns the alien to a crisp. With the building crumbling around him, Alex manages to escape and reunite with his friends. The group of teens watch from the ground as the mothership is blown up in the atmosphere above them. ZhenZhen rewards Alex for his bravery with a big kiss. Alex is reunited with his mother and the children are deemed heroes who have saved the world. Pictures show the teens being knighted by the Queen of England, being awarded crowns and sashes, and riding in parades throughout America.
Jack Gore as Alex, a timid, smart 13-year-old
Miya Cech as ZhenZhen, a girl that runaways from China because her father wanted a boy.
Benjamin Flores Jr. as Dariush, a spoiled rich boy teenager
Alessio Scalzotto as Gabriel, a teenager with Dyscalculia who escaped from a juvenile detention center
Andrew Bachelor as Logan, a camp counselor
Annabeth Gish as Grace, Alex’s mother
Scott MacArthur as Lou
Dean Jagger as Captain Hawking
Michael Beach as General Khoury
Lynn Collins as Major Collins
David Theune as Head Counselor
Tony Cavalero as Conrad
Carl McDowell as Carl
Punam Patel as Angeline
Jason Rogel as Customs Official
Chris Wylde as Uncle Chris
Rudy Mancuso as Wes
Amanda Cerny as Lucy/”Hot Counselor”
Allan Graf as Taxi Driver
Cameron Fuller as Young Soldier
Richard Gore as Alex’s dad
Peter Parros as Dariush’s dad
Annie Cavalero as Zip Line Counselor
In March 2018, it was reported that McG would direct Rim of the World for Netflix from a screenplay by Zack Stentz. In an interview, Stentz revealed that he started working on the script as early as 2017 and the deal with Netflix was closed a year later. Principal production commenced in May 2018 in Los Angeles, California. In June 2018, the cast was announced.
Principal photography began in June 2018 and reportedly lasted 40 days.
On the review aggregator website, Rotten Tomatoes, the film holds an approval rating of 25% based on 12 reviews, with a weighted average of 3.8/10.
Another Life TV series
Another Life (2019 TV series)
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Another Life is an American science fiction drama web television series created by Aaron Martin that premiered on Netflix on July 25, 2019. The series stars Katee Sackhoff, Selma Blair, Tyler Hoechlin, Justin Chatwin, Samuel Anderson, Elizabeth Ludlow, Blu Hunt, A.J. Rivera, Alexander Eling, Alex Ozerov, Jake Abel, JayR Tinaco, Jessica Camacho, Greg Hovanessian, Barbara Williams and Lina Renna.
Another Life opens with the arrival on Earth of Möbius strip-shaped flying objects, which when they land, crystal-encrusted menhirs seem to self-construct or “grow” from them. Erik Wallace (Justin Chatwin) is a scientist employed by the United States Interstellar Command who is tasked with figuring out how to communicate with the alien monolith that has landed in the United States. However, this task proves difficult and so far unsuccessful. Wallace’s wife, Captain Niko Breckinridge (Katee Sackhoff), is tasked with taking the spaceship Salvare and its crew to find the origin of this sophisticated alien object.
Cast and characters
Katee Sackhoff as Niko Breckinridge, an astronaut who commands a crew on a mission to explore the genesis of an alien artifact.
Justin Chatwin as Erik Wallace, a scientist of the United States Interstellar Command, dedicated to finding intelligent life out in the universe. He is also the husband of Niko.
Samuel Anderson as William, a holographic interface of a sentient AI onboard The Salvare.
Blu Hunt as August Catawnee, the lead engineer and youngest member of the crew aboard The Salvare.
A.J. Rivera as Bernie Martinez, the Salvare’s microbiologist and part-time chef.
Jake Abel as Sasha Harrison, the son of the U.S. Secretary of Defense, serving as the government’s representative and diplomatic liaison aboard The Salvare.
Alex Ozerov as Oliver Sokolov, one of The Salvare’s engineers.
Alexander Eling as Javier Almanzar, a former hacker who is onboard The Salvare as an expert in computer engineering.
JayR Tinaco as Zayn Petrossian, the Salvare’s medic.
Lina Renna as Jana Breckinridge-Wallace, the daughter of Niko and Erik.
Selma Blair as Harper Glass, a media influencer who attempts to break one of the biggest stories in human history.
Elizabeth Ludlow as Cas Isakovic, Niko’s second-in-command and pilot of The Salvare. She is awakened in episode 2.
Jessica Camacho as Michelle Vargas, the Salvare’s communications expert.
Barbara Williams as General Blair Dubois, General of United States Interstellar Command, in charge of United States’ response to the Artifact.
Greg Hovanessian as Beauchamp McCarry, Niko’s third-in-command and pilot of The Salvare. He is awakened in episode 7.
Parveen Dosanjh as Dr. Nani Singh, a scientist who is Erik’s friend and coworker.
Chanelle Peloso as Petra Smith, a crew member of the Salvare.
Tyler Hoechlin as Ian Yerxa, an astronaut and the former commander of The Salvare space explorations ship, who loses the position to Niko.
Martin Donovan as Egan Harrison, a politician and Sasha’s father.
Leifennie as Azami Ouchi, a computer engineer.
On April 26, 2018, Netflix announced that it had given the production a series order for a ten-episode first season. The series is created by Aaron Martin who is credited as an executive producer alongside Noreen Halpern. On June 19, 2019, it was confirmed that the series would premiere on July 25, 2019.
On April 26, 2018, it was announced that Katee Sackhoff had been cast as a series regular. On August 21, 2018, it was reported that Selma Blair had joined the cast in a recurring role. On August 28, 2018, it was announced that Tyler Hoechlin, Justin Chatwin, Samuel Anderson, and Elizabeth Ludlow had joined the cast. The following day, Blu Hunt joined the cast. In September 2018, the rest of the main cast was revealed.
Filming for the first season took place on location in Vancouver, British Columbia from August 20, 2018 to November 20, 2018.
Review aggregator website Rotten Tomatoes reports that 6% of 17 critic ratings are positive for the series, with an average rating of 4.54/10. The website’s consensus reads, “A hodgepodge of science fiction homage, Another Life lacks the distinctive spark necessary to set it apart from the array of stories it aspires to be.” Metacritic calculated an average score of 33 out of 100, based on 8 reviews, citing “generally unfavourable reviews”.
Nightflyers is an American horror science fiction television series on Syfy that premiered in the United States on December 2, 2018 and on Netflix, internationally on February 1, 2019. The series is based on the novella and series of short stories of the same name by George R. R. Martin. The first season consisted of ten episodes, which concluded on December 13, 2018. On February 19, 2019, it was reported that Syfy had canceled the series.
In 2093, a team of scientists embarks on a journey into space aboard an advanced ship called the Nightflyer to make first contact with alien life-forms. However, when terrifying and violent events occur, the team begins to question each other and to realize there is something on-board the Nightflyer with them. It’s up to the crew to save the ship and themselves. 
Eoin Macken as Karl D’Branin, an astrophysicist and leader of the Nightflyer expedition
David Ajala as Roy Eris, the reclusive captain of the Nightflyer
Jodie Turner-Smith as Melantha Jhirl
Angus Sampson as Rowan, a xenobiologist
Sam Strike as Thale, an L-1 telepath
Maya Eshet as Lommie Thorne, a cyberneticist, who communicates with the Nightflyer’s computers via a neuro-port surgically implanted in her arm
Brían F. O’Byrne as Auggie, chief engineer of the Nightflyer
Gretchen Mol as Agatha Matheson, a psychiatrist who specializes in working with telepaths
Phillip Rhys as Murphy
Gwynne McElveen as Tobis
Zoë Tapper as Joy D’Branin
Miranda Raison as Tessia
In 2016, it was announced that Syfy would be developing a series based on Martin’s novella. Later in 2017, it was announced that the series would rather be based on the film adaptation from 1987. George R. R. Martin will not be involved directly with the series due to his exclusive contract with HBO, but will be credited as an executive producer.
The series started its production in early 2018 on location in Limerick, Ireland, and also at the Limerick-based Troy Studios, with Daniel Cerone serving as the showrunner. Cerone also serves as a series executive producer, alongside Gene Klein, David Bartis, and Doug Liman of Hypnotic, Alison Rosenzweig and Michael Gaeta of Gaeta Rosenzweig Films, and Lloyd Ivan Miller and Alice P. Neuhauser of Lloyd Ivan Miller Productions.[better source needed]
For the visual effects, Spin VFX is the main vendor with Territory Studio supplying user interfaces, and Switch Visual Effects providing additional support. The visual effects have to work seamlessly with the huge practical set built for the ship.
Promotional poster for the series.
Netflix has joined the series as a co-producer, and holds international airing rights in addition to secondary airing rights in the United States.Nightflyers premiered on Syfy on December 2, 2018. The first season consisted of ten episodes. The first season became available to stream on Netflix worldwide on February 1, 2019. On February 19, 2019, it was reported that Syfy had canceled the series.
On review aggregation website Rotten Tomatoes, the series has an approval rating of 33% based on 27 reviews, with an average rating of 5.41/10. The website’s critical consensus reads: “Unsettling without being particularly scary, Nightflyers’s low-budget aesthetics and over-reliance on homage betray its intriguing philosophical pondering and impressive creative pedigree.” Metacritic, which uses a weighted average, assigned a score of 47 out of 100 based on 14 critics, indicating “mixed or average reviews”.
Alex McLevy of The A.V. Club is disappointed that the show doesn’t do more to upend genre conventions the way Game of Thrones successfully did, saying “showrunner Jeff Buhler doesn’t quite know how to make it feel new again”. McLevy praises the show for its “appealing visual style” despite budgetary limitations, and of the acting cast he singles out Maya Eshet “who elevates every scene in which she appears”. He compares the show to the film Event Horizon and calls the show engaging but lacking depth and suggests the show may appeal more to those who already enjoy the sci-fi horror genre.
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Cold Pursuit is a 2019 American black comedy action film directed by Hans Petter Moland (in his Hollywood debut) from a screenplay by Frank Baldwin. The film stars Liam Neeson, Laura Dern, Emmy Rossum, William Forsythe, and Tom Bateman. It is a remake of the 2014 Norwegian vigilante film In Order of Disappearance (Kraftidioten), also directed by Moland, and follows a snowplow driver who sets out for revenge on a local drug lord following the murder of his son.
The film was released in the United States on February 8, 2019, by Summit Entertainment. It has grossed over $32 million worldwide and received generally positive reviews from critics, who praised the action sequences and the dark humor.
Nelson Coxman’s quiet life as a snowplow driver in the glitzy Colorado ski resort of Kehoe, where he was just awarded “Citizen of the Year”, is disrupted when his son dies from a forced heroin overdose. Nels’ wife Grace has a psychotic breakdown over her son’s death and leaves her husband in grief.
A depressed Coxman is about to commit suicide when he learns that his son was murdered by a drug cartel. This causes him to craft a custom sniper rifle, become a vigilante and kill three members of the cartel, sinking their bodies in a nearby river. The cartel’s leader, Trevor “Viking” Calcote, suspects that these deaths are the work of Native American drug lord White Bull, with whom he has earlier avoided conflict. Viking abducts and murders White Bull’s only son, which sparks a gang war between the two factions.
Viking eventually learns that Coxman has killed his men, and tries in vain to call off the gang war, not realizing White Bull intends to exact revenge through a blood debt, “a son for a son”. Meanwhile, Coxman kidnaps Viking’s son from his prep school in an attempt to draw the drug lord into an ambush. Despite abducting the boy, Coxman treats him well and avoids putting his life in jeopardy.
Viking’s gang arrive at Coxman’s ambush, which is unsuccessful, and he is captured alive. White Bull’s gang arrives shortly thereafter with the intention of vengeance. During the ensuing shootout, most of the gangsters are killed and Viking is trapped after Coxman drops a shorn tree on his car, and is shot in the chest by White Bull.
Viking dies later when found by Kehoe police Detectives Kimberly Dash and her partner Gip. As Coxman leaves the property in his snowplow to continue his work, White Bull jumps into the cab and the two men drive away together. The last remaining enforcer for White Bull’s cartel accidentally paraglides into the snowplow and is chopped to bits.
Liam Neeson as Nelson “Nels” Coxman
Laura Dern as Grace Coxman, Nels’ wife
Emmy Rossum as Kimberly “Kim” Dash, a local detective
Tom Bateman as Trevor “Viking” Calcote, a psychopathic drug lord based in Denver, Colorado
William Forsythe as Brock “Wingman” Coxman, a former hitman for Viking’s father and Nels Coxman’s brother
Julia Jones as Aya, a member of the Ute people, Viking’s ex-wife, and the mother of his son
Domenick Lombardozzi as Mustang, a closeted homosexual and senior enforcer for Viking
Raoul Trujillo as Thorpe, a member of the Ute people and enforcer for White Bull
Benjamin Hollingsworth as Dexter, an enforcer to Viking and Mustang’s secret lover
John Doman as Gip, Kim’s partner and a corrupt cop working for White Bull
David O’Hara as Sly, an enforcer to Viking
Aleks Paunovic as Detective Osgard
Christopher Logan as Shiv
Nathaniel Arcand as Smoke
Ben Cotton as Windex
Tom Jackson as White Bull, a member of the Ute people and rival drug lord to Viking
Micheál Richardson as Kyle Coxman, Nels’s son.
Mitchell Saddleback as Avalanche
Manna Nichols as Minya, a secretary at White Bull’s headquarters
The participation of actor Liam Neeson, director Hans Petter Moland and producers Michael Shamberg and StudioCanal in making Cold Pursuit was announced in January 2017. In March 2017, Domenick Lombardozzi, Emmy Rossum, Benjamin Hollingsworth, Laura Dern, William Forsythe, Julia Jones, and John Doman joined the cast of the film. The next month, Aleks Paunovic joined.
Principal photography began in March 2017, in Alberta, Canada. Filming also took place in Fernie, British Columbia. While Moland had hoped to shoot in the Banff and Jasper national parks, the permit was denied by Parks Canada, who cited concerns about the film’s environmental impact, and over the depiction of the First Nations gangsters led by Tom Jackson’s character. Jackson provided a letter in support of the project.
In November 2017, Summit Entertainment acquired U.S. distribution rights to the film. It was released on February 8 in the United States, and is scheduled for February 22 in the United Kingdom.
The film’s February 5, 2019 red carpet premiere was cancelled because of comments made by Neeson the previous day, regarding a past incident in his life, which some interpreted as racist.
As of February 21, 2019, Cold Pursuit has grossed $23.8 million in the United States and Canada, and $8.4 million in other territories, for a worldwide total of $32.2 million, against a production budget of $60 million.
In the United States and Canada, Cold Pursuit was released alongside What Men Want, The Lego Movie 2: The Second Part and The Prodigy, and was projected to gross $7–10 million from 2,630 theaters in its opening weekend. It made $3.6 million on its first day, including $540,000 from Thursday night previews. It went on to debut to $11 million, finishing third, behind The Lego Movie 2 and What Men Want. In its second weekend the film fell 45% to $6 million, finishing sixth.
On review aggregator Rotten Tomatoes, the film holds an approval rating of 74% based on 118 reviews, with an average rating of 6.5/10. The website’s critical consensus reads, “Cold Pursuit delivers the action audiences expect from a Liam Neeson thriller — along with humor and a sophisticated streak that make this an uncommonly effective remake.” On Metacritic, which assigns a normalized rating to reviews, the film has a weighted average score of 58 out of 100, based on 35 critics, indicating “mixed or average reviews”. Audiences polled by CinemaScore gave the film an average grade of “B-” on an A+ to F scale, while those at PostTrak gave it an average 3 out of 5 stars and a 42% “definite recommend”.
Chris Nashawaty, writing for Entertainment Weekly, delivered a positive review, grading it a “B+” and saying: “If [Cold Pursuit] sounds like murder-by-numbers Liam Neeson Mad Libs, well, it kind of is. But what sets Cold Pursuit apart from its predecessors is its tone. It has the jokey, self-amused vibe of an Elmore Leonard novel or one of those arch, wannabe Tarantino knock-offs that sprouted up like toadstools in the wake of Reservoir Dogs and Pulp Fiction and were quickly forgotten. It knows exactly what kind of movie it is, but that doesn’t stand in the way of it goosing its bloodbath set pieces with irreverent, off-kilter gallows humor.” Richard Roeper, writing for the Chicago Sun-Times, praised the film, awarding it 3.5 out of 4 stars, and saying, “As characters with nicknames such as Sly and Mustang and Smoke and War Dog and Shiv and Drayno enter and often quickly exit the picture, Cold Pursuit moves forward with the assured and deliberate force of Nels’ massive snowplow. And with Neeson/Nels at the wheel, Cold Pursuit is one fantastically hot mess of a movie.”
Liam Neeson was accused of racism after an interview with The Independent at a press junket for the film, published in February 2019. Neeson explained his character’s “primal” anger to the interviewer by recounting an experience he had many years ago. A woman close to him said she had been raped by a stranger, and Neeson asked what color skin the attacker had; after learning the attacker was black, Neeson said that for about a week, he “went up and down areas with a cosh … hoping some ‘black bastard’ would come out of a pub and have a go” so that Neeson “could kill him”. In the interview, Neeson also said he was “ashamed” to recount the experience and that it was “horrible” that he did what he did. “It’s awful … but I did learn a lesson from it, when I eventually thought, ‘What the fuck are you doing?'”
In an appearance on Good Morning America, Neeson elaborated on his experience while denying being a racist, saying the incident occurred nearly 40 years ago, that he asked for physical attributes of the rapist other than race, that he would have done the same if the rapist was “a Scot or a Brit or a Lithuanian”, that he had purposely gone into “black areas of the city”, and that he “did seek help” from a priest after coming to his senses. Neeson said that the lesson of his experience was “to open up, to talk about these things”, as there was still underlying “racism and bigotry” in both the United States and Northern Ireland. The controversy Neeson’s comments caused led to the cancellation of the red carpet event for the premiere of Cold Pursuit.
Jack Reacher – Never Go Back B+Jack Reacher poster – Jack Reacher (film) – Wikipedia
Jack Reacher: Never Go Back is a 2016 American action thriller film, directed by Edward Zwick and written by Zwick, Richard Wenk and Marshall Herskovitz, and based on the novel Never Go Back by Lee Child. A standalone sequel to the 2012 film Jack Reacher, the film stars Tom Cruise, Cobie Smulders, Patrick Heusinger, Aldis Hodge, Danika Yarosh, Holt McCallany and Robert Knepper. The plot follows Reacher going on the run with an Army Major who has been framed for espionage, as the two reveal a dark conspiracy.
Principal photography began on October 20, 2015, in New Orleans, and the film was released on October 21, 2016, in IMAX and conventional formats. It grossed $162 million worldwide and received mixed reviews from critics.
4.1 Box office
4.2 Critical response
4.3 Home media
6 External links
After busting a human trafficking ring, former military investigator turned vigilante drifter Jack Reacher returns to his old military headquarters to meet Major Susan Turner, whom he has been working with during his travels and has become his closest friend – only to learn from Colonel Sam Morgan that Turner has been accused of espionage and detained.
Turner’s attorney, Colonel Bob Moorcroft, reveals that there is evidence that Turner is involved in the murders of two soldiers in Afghanistan, but Reacher believes she is being framed. Moorcroft also reveals an old acquaintance of Reacher, Candice Dutton, has filed a paternity suit against him, claiming he is the biological father of her 15-year-old daughter, Samantha Dutton. Reacher tries to reach out to Samantha, but she rebuffs him, believing he is after her biological mother due to her past as a prostitute.
Moorcroft is later killed by an unknown assassin known as the Hunter. Reacher is framed for Moorcroft’s murder and arrested and transported to the prison where Turner is being detained. Two hitmen arrive to kill her, but Reacher neutralizes them, rescues her and they escape to Morgan’s house, having deduced he is involved in the conspiracy, to extract information. After they leave, the Hunter, revealed to be working with Morgan, kills Morgan and frames Reacher which he learns about from a friend, Sergeant Leach, when he asks her to investigate a military contractor.
Reacher and Turner uncover surveillance pictures of Samantha and surmise she is in danger, arriving at her home to find her foster parents dead and Samantha hiding in the kitchen. Reacher and Turner decide to escort Samantha to Turner’s old private school for protection, but discover that she has her mobile phone with her and that the enemy probably knows exactly where they are. They discard the phone and make a quick exit, during which Samantha steals a backpack from one of the students to use the credit cards.
Reacher, Turner and Samantha travel to New Orleans in search of Daniel Prudhomme, the only eyewitness to the murders for which Turner has been framed. They find him in a derelict warehouse filled with drug addicts and learn that Prudhomme is connected to Parasource, a private military organization that is trying to cover up the murders. Reacher contacts Turner’s friend, Captain Anthony Espin, to move Prudhomme into custody, but they are ambushed by assassins and Prudhomme is killed, while Reacher rescues a wounded Espin and finds out that the assassins are Parasource contractors. Parasource’s CEO, General James Harkness, then sends the Hunter to capture Samantha after she uses a credit card from the backpack she stole to order room service.
Reacher and Turner, along with Espin, acting on information provided by Prudhomme, intercept a flight of weapons due to enter the country, where they confront Harkness and his men and accuse them of corruption. Upon opening the crates, however, Espin finds weapons as declared in the flight manifest. Before Turner can be re-arrested, Reacher opens up one of the weapons and discovers that they are filled with opium. They learn that Harkness framed Turner, who had been investigating his activities, for the murders of two soldiers who discovered that Harkness was selling weapons to insurgents and smuggling drugs into the United States. Espin and his men then arrest Harkness, clearing Reacher’s and Turner’s names.
The Hunter and his men locate and chase Samantha through the streets to lure Reacher into a confrontation. Turner kills one of the assassins, whilst Reacher takes out another one on the rooftop. The Hunter captures Samantha and threatens to kill her, but she manages to escape and steal his gun. Reacher then tackles the Hunter onto another rooftop, briefly incapacitating both of them, and they have a vicious fight that culminates with Reacher breaking the Hunter’s arm, leg and neck, before dropping him off the rooftop. Reacher then admits to Samantha he might be her father.
Following Harkness’ arrest, Turner is reinstated in her old position and goes back to her office, where her colleagues and a recovering Captain Espin all welcome her back. Reacher promises to keep in touch before meeting Samantha at a diner to meet Candice, Samantha’s mother, whom Reacher surmises he will recognize, as he remembers every woman he has slept with. Samantha reveals that the waitress that had been serving him is in fact Candice, and that Reacher cannot be her father, as neither had recognized each other. Reacher and Samantha then reluctantly part.
A short time later, while Reacher is walking along a road, he is surprised when a phone Samantha had slipped into his pocket rings. He finds a text message from her reading, “Miss me yet?”. Reacher smiles as he sticks out his thumb to hitch a ride.
Tom Cruise as Jack Reacher
Cobie Smulders as Major Susan Turner
Aldis Hodge as Captain Anthony Espin, Turner’s friend
Danika Yarosh as Samantha Dutton, the girl Jack Reacher protects
Patrick Heusinger as the Hunter
Holt McCallany as Colonel Sam Morgan
Austin Hebert as Daniel Prudhomme
Robert Catrini as Colonel Bob Moorcroft, Turner’s attorney
Robert Knepper as General James Harkness
Jessica Stroup as Lieutenant Sullivan
Madalyn Horcher as Sergeant Leach
Teri Wyble as Mrs. Prudhomme
Lee Child as TSA Agent
While Jack Reacher was intended to be a tent-pole for a film series, it was initially reported that a sequel would be unlikely due to its lackluster run at the North American box office. However, in February 2013, a sequel became more likely after the film surpassed a gross of $200 million worldwide. On December 9, 2013, it was announced that Paramount Pictures and Skydance Media were moving forward with the development of a second film, reportedly based on the 2013 Jack Reacher novel Never Go Back.
On May 14, 2014, it was reported that Tom Cruise would reprise his role as Jack Reacher.
On May 19, 2015, Deadline reported that Edward Zwick would re-team with Cruise, and direct the film. Zwick wrote the script along with Marshall Herskovitz, and also Richard Wenk. Zwick and Cruise had previously worked together on The Last Samurai. On August 14, 2015, Cobie Smulders was added to the cast to play the female lead. On September 15, Danika Yarosh signed on to star in the film, on September 17, Aldis Hodge was added to the cast, and on September 22, Patrick Heusinger was cast in the villain role. On October 20, Holt McCallany joined the film, as did Austin Hebert. On November 12, 2015, Robert Catrini joined, and on January 20, 2016, Robert Knepper was cast as General Harkness, a retired general, and CEO of a private military firm.
Principal photography on the film began on October 20, 2015, in New Orleans, Louisiana. On November 23, 2015, filming took place in Baton Rouge, and in January 2016, filming also took place in St. Francisville.
Henry Jackman composed the film’s music, making this Zwick’s first film since Blood Diamond (2006) not to be scored by James Newton Howard.
On June 14, 2016, Entertainment Weekly premiered a preview of the first trailer, with Cobie Smulders introducing the footage. The official Jack Reacher Twitter account announced that a full trailer would be released on June 22, 2016. A browser game, titled Jack Reacher: Never Stop Punching, was also released to promote the film.
In September 2015, Paramount set Jack Reacher: Never Go Back a release date of October 21, 2016.
Jack Reacher: Never Go Back grossed $58.7 million in the United States and Canada, and $103.4 million in other countries, for a worldwide total of $162.1 million, against a production budget of $96 million.
In the United States and Canada, the film opened alongside Ouija: Origin of Evil, Keeping Up with the Joneses and Boo! A Madea Halloween, and was projected to gross around $20 million from 3,780 theaters in its opening weekend, with the studio expecting a debut of about $17 million. It earned $1.3 million in midnight showings at 1,850 theaters, slightly above Oblivion’s $1.1 million and under Edge of Tomorrow’s $1.8 million. For the weekend, the film opened to $23 million, finishing in second place, behind Boo! A Madea Halloween. In its second weekend, the film dropped by 58.2%, grossing $9.6 million, and finishing third at the box office, behind A Madea Halloween ($16.7 million) and newcomer Inferno ($15 million).
Outside North America, the film was released in 42 countries in conjunction with its United States and Canada debut, representing about 75% of the film’s total marketplace internationally.
In 30 markets, the film posted the biggest opening in the series. Outside of the United States and China, the United Kingdom and Ireland ($3.3 million), France ($2.8 million), Australia ($2 million), Russia ($2 million), Indonesia ($1.9 million), Taiwan ($1.6 million) and the UAE ($1.3 million) posted the top openings.
On Rotten Tomatoes, the film has an approval rating of 37%, based on 219 reviews, with an average rating of 5.2/10. The website’s critical consensus reads, “Monotonously formulaic, Jack Reacher: Never Go Back is one action-thriller sequel whose title also serves as a warning.” On Metacritic, the film has a weighted average score 47 out of 100, based on 43 critics, indicating “mixed or average reviews”. Audiences polled by CinemaScore gave the film an average grade of “B+” on an A+ to F scale, while the first film received an “A−”.
Jack Reacher: Never Go Back was released on Digital HD on January 17, 2017, and on Blu-ray, Ultra HD Blu-ray and DVD on January 31, 2017.
By May 2018, the film had made $14.5 million in domestic region video sales.[35
The A-Team (film)
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
The A-Team is a 2010 American action comedy film based on the 1980s television series of the same name created by Frank Lupoand Stephen J. Cannell. Co-written (with Brian Bloom and Skip Woods) and directed by Joe Carnahan, the film stars Liam Neeson, Bradley Cooper, Quinton Jackson, Sharlto Copley, Jessica Biel, Patrick Wilson and Brian Bloom. The film tells the story of “The A-Team”, a Special Forces team imprisoned for a crime they did not commit, who escape and set out to clear their names. The film was produced by Stephen J. Cannell, Ridley Scott and Tony Scott. The film was theatrically released on June 11, 2010 by 20th Century Fox.
The film had been in development since the mid-1990s having gone through a number of writers and story ideas and being put on hold a number of times. Upon its release, the film received mixed reviews from critics and was an average performer at the box office making $177 million on a $110 million budget.
3.1Locations and filming
6.2Comments by original cast
John “Hannibal” Smith is held captive in Mexico by two Federal Police officers working for renegade General Javier Tuco. Hannibal escapes and sets out to rescue Templeton “Face” Peck, who is held captive at Tuco’s ranch. Hannibal saves Face after enlisting fellow Ranger, B.A. Baracus, driving to the rescue in BA’s modified GMC Vandura. Pursued by Tuco, they stop at a nearby Army Hospitalto recruit the services of eccentric pilot Howling Mad Murdock. They flee in a medical helicopter, chased by Tuco, in a dogfight that leaves BA with a fear of flying. The battle ends when they lure Tuco’s helicopter into American airspace, where it is shot down by an F-22 Raptor for trespassing.
Eight years later in Iraq, Hannibal is contacted by CIA Special Activities Division operative Lynch, who assigns them a black operationto recover U.S. Treasury plates and over $1 billion in cash slated to move out of Baghdad in an armored convoy. Hannibal’s commanding officer, General Morrison, consents to the operation but Face’s former girlfriend, Defense Criminal Investigative ServiceCapt. Charissa Sosa, tries to discourage the team against getting the plates. The mission is successful and when the team returns to base, the money and Morrison’s vehicle are destroyed by Brock Pike and his men from the private security firm Black Forest. Without Morrison (the only proof that they were authorized to act), Hannibal, Face, Murdock, and BA are court-martialled, sentenced to ten years in separate prisons, and dishonorably discharged. Sosa also ended up court-martialled and is demoted to lieutenant.
Six months later, Lynch visits Hannibal in prison and tells him that Pike may be trying to sell the plates with the help of an Arab backer. Hannibal, who has been tracking Pike on his own, makes a deal with Lynch: full reinstatement and clean records for his team in return for the plates. Lynch agrees and Hannibal escapes, breaking out Face, BA, and Murdock in the process. The team hijacks a C-130, which is later shot down by Reaper UCAVs, but not before the team parachutes away in a tank stashed aboard and make it to the ground safely. The team moves to reclaim the plates and kidnap Pike’s backer. It is revealed that the backer is actually General Morrison, who plotted with Lynch and Pike to steal the plates but teamed up with Pike to double-cross Lynch and fake his death. Lynch orders an airstrike to kill the team and Morrison, but the team manages to escape whilst Morrison is killed.
Hannibal arranges to meet Sosa on board a container ship at the Los Angeles Port, saying he will hand over Morrison and the plates. Face then calls Sosa on a drop phone he planted on her at the train station, and conspires a different plan with her. It all unfolds according to plan until Pike, who is now working with Lynch, blows up the container ship and chases Face to near death. BA (having converted to Buddhism while in prison) finally gives up his pacifist ways and kills Pike, saving Face. Hannibal leads Lynch into a container with Murdock, who, wearing a covered bullet-proof helmet, is portraying Morrison. Lynch shoots at Murdock’s head, believing that he kills Morrison, and is later tricked into admitting that he stole the plates, and is subsequently arrested by Sosa.
The CIA agents led by a separate “Lynch” comes and claims custody of the original one. Despite their success and proving themselves innocent, the military still arrests the team for escaping from prison, also a crime; they and Sosa are angered by this, since it is only being done so Sosa’s boss does not have to fill out paperwork. Sosa is reinstated to captain, but she promises to do all she can to set the team free and kisses Face as everybody is led into a prison van. In the van, everyone starts saying that the system has burned them again, but Hannibal tells them that there is always a way out of any situation, and turns towards Face, who smiles and says “I don’t want to steal your line, boss, but… I love it when a plan comes together” and opens his mouth and reveals a handcuff key, given to him by Sosa through the kiss. The final scene includes a narration (spoken by Corey Burton) similar to the show’s opening narration.
In a post-credits scene, Murdock and Face of The A-Team’s original cast are seen.
Liam Neeson as John “Hannibal” Smith
Bradley Cooper as Templeton “Face” Peck
Quinton “Rampage” Jackson as B.A. Baracus
Sharlto Copley as Howling Mad Murdock
Jessica Biel as Charissa Sosa 
Patrick Wilson as Vance Burress/Agent Lynch
Jon Hamm as Other Lynch (uncredited)
Brian Bloom as Brock Pike. Bloom was also a writer on the film.
Gerald McRaney as General Morrison
Terry Chen as Ravech
C. Ernst Harth as Crematorium Attendant
Corey Burton as Narrator
In a post credits scene, original series actors Dirk Benedict (Face) and Dwight Schultz (Murdock) have cameos with their film equivalents Bradley Cooper and Sharlto Copley. Benedict plays Face’s fellow tanning bed client, credited as “Pensacola Prisoner Milt,” and Schultz plays the German neurologist who examines Murdock.
Locations and filming
The entire film was shot at various locations in Canada including Kamloops, Vancouver, Cache Creek and Ashcroft, British Columbia, with much of the studio works being done at Mammoth Studios. Other footage was included as well, such as aerial shots of the Cologne train station (though erroneously referred to as Frankfurt Central Station in the movie) as well as an aerial shot of the Frankfurt skyline. Canadian Forces Base Cold Lake is also featured in the German escape scene where a number of base buildings and landmarks are clearly visible, as is the false canopy painted under the CF-18s. The Royal Canadian Air Force along with some USMC squadrons are the only Hornet users to have the false canopy painted on the bottom. American markings were digitally added later. The Hawaii Mars Martin Mars water bomber, based at Sproat Lake, British Columbia, is also used in one scene of the movie to cross the Atlantic.
Joe Carnahan at the film’s premiere.
The film had been in development since the mid-1990s, going through a number of writers and story ideas, and being put on hold a number of times. Producer Stephen J. Cannell hoped to update the setting, perhaps using the Gulf War as part of the backstory. John Singleton was initially assigned to direct, but in October 2008 he pulled out of the project. When Singleton was still attached to the project as director, Ice Cube was approached for the role of B.A. Baracus.
The production budget for the film was $110 million, but the cost came in at $100 million after tax credits.
In June 2009, Variety revealed that Liam Neeson was in negotiations with 20th Century Fox to star as Hannibal Smith, and Bradley Cooperannounced to MTV News that he would be playing the role of Templeton Peck after he first denied the rumors saying that he was not involved and insisted that he had not seen any script.
On August 26, 2009, MMAjunkie.com reported that mixed martial arts fighter Quinton Jackson would play the role of B.A. Baracus in the upcoming film, but this was later denied by a representative for Jackson. In September 2009, The Vancouver Sun suggested that Jackson has been attached to the role and was postponing his fight at UFC 107 with Rashad Evans due to filming for The A-Team. Filming started in Vancouver in late 2009, and Jackson’s involvement was then confirmed.
On September 15, 2009, Variety confirmed the casting of Neeson, Cooper and Jackson. They additionally reported that Sharlto Copley and Jessica Biel were in final negotiations to join the cast. Copley would be playing the role of H.M. Murdock and Biel would be playing the ex-lover of Face who is a disillusioned and ruthless Army officer in charge of pursuing the team. 20th Century Fox later confirmed that Copley and Biel were cast in the film.
On September 30, 2009, Liam Neeson and the rest of the cast were seen filming scenes in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada, as shooting got under way. The first official pictures of Neeson, Cooper, Copley and Jackson in character were soon released, including one which features the iconic van in the background.
On October 30, 2009, Dwight Schultz confirmed that he had filmed a cameo scene for the movie. This news was followed on the November 23, 2009, that Dirk Benedict would also make a cameo. Schultz and Benedict played Howling Mad Murdock and Templeton Peck respectively in the original series. Mr. T, the original BA Baracus, did not appear in the film. In an interview with Wendy Williams, he said he did not like doing a cameo appearance in a film based on the original series he once did.
In February 2010, it was announced a series of comics for the movie would be released beginning in March. Written by Carnahan and Chuck Dixon, the series, The A-Team: War Stories is a prequel to the film, featuring one-shots focusing each on Hannibal, Face, BA, and Murdock. A second series, The A-Team: Shotgun Wedding, is a tie-in to the film by showing an all-new adventure set after the quartet escaped. Film director Joe Carnahan and Tom Waltz collaborated to pen the series.
Jazwares released a line of action figures featuring the four main characters, plus the GMC Vandura.
An application for the iPhone was released as part of the marketing blitz for the film. The A-Team application is a side-scrolling, third person, action shooter game. Produced by RealNetworks the game includes voice-overs from B.A. Baracus.
The film’s first trailer was released January 8, 2010. The film’s second trailer was released April 1, 2010. The film premiered in Los Angeles on Thursday June 3, 2010, at Grauman’s Chinese Theatre on Hollywood Boulevard. Liam Neeson arrived in The A-Team custom Chevrolet G20 van; Bradley Cooper and Sharlto Copley rode in on a real U.S. Army tank. The film opened nationwide on June 11, 2010.
The film premiered in the United Kingdom on July 27, before going on general release the next day. The event was attended by the four team members along with Jessica Biel, and the A-Team van.
The film was released on December 14, 2010 on DVD and Blu-ray. It was released on DVD and Blu-ray on October 27 in Australia and on November 29, 2010 in the UK. An extended cut was also released, pushing the running time to 133 minutes. Two of the most noteworthy additions in the extended cut were the two cameo scenes of the original Face and Murdock, which were pushed back after the end credits in the original cut due to pacing.
The A-Team received mixed reviews from critics. On Rotten Tomatoes, the film has an approval rating of 48% based on 208 reviews with an average rating of 5.4/10. The site’s critical consensus reads, “For better and for worse, Joe Carnahan’s big-screen version of The A-Team captures the superficial, noisy spirit of the TV series.” On Metacritic, the film has a score of 47 out of 100 based on 37 critics, indicating “mixed or average reviews”. Audiences polled by CinemaScore gave the film an average grade of “B+” on an A+ to F scale.
Owen Gleiberman of Entertainment Weekly says of the film: “It’s trash so compacted it glows”. Richard Corliss of Time magazine calls the film “the best in a mediocre line-up of summer-action flicks”. He goes on to say the film lacks “a coherent plot and complex characterization”, though he does note that these qualities “are irrelevant to the genre”. Peter Travers of Rolling Stone magazine calls the film, “big, loud, ludicrous and edited into visual incomprehension”, but “pity the fool who lets that stand in the way of enjoying The A-Team”. In contrast, Lou Lumenick of the New York Post, who titled his piece “Pity the fool who sees ‘The A-Team'”, is among the most critical, calling the film “overlong, overblown and utterly forgettable.” The Hollywood Reporter criticizes the film’s story, character development and logic, calling it “nearly writer-free”, while the St. Petersburg Times was far more positive, calling the film “literally a blast” from start to finish, and praises it for “containing more thrills than the average shoot-em-up”.
Film critic Roger Ebert of the Chicago Sun-Times said The A-Team is an incomprehensible mess, criticizing the film for being as shallow as the television series, which he describes as “punishment” when drawn out to a two-hour-long film. Stephen Whitty of The Star-Ledger complains the film makers remembered little more from the television series than a Dirty Dozen gimmick and compares the film to the “awful” Smokin’ Aces by the same director.
Comments by original cast
Dirk Benedict, who played Templeton Peck in the TV series, spoke of regretting his cameo, stating “You’ll miss me if you blink. I kind of regret doing it because it’s a non-part. They wanted to be able to say, ‘Oh yeah, the original cast are in it,’ but we’re not. It is three seconds. It’s kind of insulting.”
Mr. T, the original B. A. Baracus, was offered a cameo, but turned it down, feeling it would not be right for him to appear in the film if he did not play Barracus. In a 2010 interview with Script magazine director Joe Carnahan claimed that Mr. T, after viewing scenes from the film, thought the final product was “the greatest thing in the world”. After the premiere of the film Mr. T allegedly stated that he had become disillusioned and felt the story emphasized sex and violence, and that it was unfaithful to the original series. An attorney for Mr. T later stated that the actor had not yet seen the film and could not comment on it.
Dwight Schultz, who played the TV series’ “Howling Mad” Murdock, issued a statement to his official fansite that the film “pays homage to the series while it eschews its essential working premise: a band of capable military brothers for hire determined to save underdog and usually poor civilians from scum. … The team characters are sufficiently different and, with so many roles reversed from the original, one could say they are not really derivative, save for their names.” He also noted that Sharlto Copley’s Murdock “is faithful to the original, but at the same time is big screen twisted and right at home with the new team.”
In the psychiatric hospital scene, Reginald Barclay, Schultz’s character from Star Trek: The Next Generation, is credited during the opening title of a film, as is G.F. Starbuck, referencing Lieutenant Starbuck, Benedict’s character from the original Battlestar Galactica.
The film fell slightly short of expectations for its opening weekend, earning $26 million, as opposed to the initially predicted $30–35 million. The film opened behind The Karate Kid, which took in $56 million. The film opened in the UK/Ireland on July 28, 2010, and came at No. 3 in at the box office with a first weekend haul of $5.6 million. As of August 26, 2010, The A-Team had taken over $77.2 million at the U.S. box office, and $100 million internationally, for a worldwide total of over $177.2 million.
The soundtrack album of The A-Team was released on June 21, 2010, by Varèse Sarabande. On December 1, 2009, it was announced that Alan Silvestri would compose the film score. Silvestri recorded his score with a 90-piece ensemble of the Hollywood Studio Symphony at the Newman Scoring Stage at 20th Century Fox.
All music composed by Alan Silvestri unless stated otherwise.
Songs used in the film are:
“House of Pain” by The Game
“Shut Up” by Trick Daddy
“Trio Para Enamorados (Trio for Lovers)” by Jorge Calandrelli
“You Spin Me Round (Like a Record)” (Sung onscreen by Sharlto Copley)
“A-Team Blastoff Suite” by Tom Morello
“I Got Mine” by The Black Keys
“I’ve Been Lonely for So Long” by Frederick Knight
“The Washington Post” by John Phillip Sousa
“I Don’t Want to Change Your Mind” by Wildlife
“My Girl Has Rosenmand” written by Johannes Brahms and performed by Peter Schreier and Konrad Ragossnig
“The Little Drummer Boy” written by Harry Simeone, Katherine K. Davis and Henry Onorati
“Anarchy in the U.K.” by Sex Pistols
“I Ran 6 Miles” by Gary Sredzienski
“Reelin’ In the Years” written by Steely Dan
Neeson, Cooper, Copley and Jackson originally expressed interest in doing a sequel. Joe Carnahan has expressed interest in directing a sequel and said it will depend on DVD and Blu-ray sales and rentals. On March 10, 2011, Cooper stated that the film had not generated enough revenue for there to be a sequel. This was confirmed by Liam Neeson in a webchat. Neeson later commented in early 2012 that he understood why the film was not successful: “I watched it about two months ago and I found it a little confusing and I was in the thing. I just couldn’t figure out who was who and what’s been done to him and why, a little bit.” Later in 2013 Carnahan said on his Twitter account “For the record guys and as much as I appreciate all the A-TEAM love. There will NOT be a sequel. It didn’t make enough $$$ and that’s that
Snows of Kilimanjaro
The Snows of Kilimanjaro (1952 film)
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The Snows of Kilimanjaro
The Snows of Kilimanjaro is a 1952 American Technicolor film based on the short story of the same name by Ernest Hemingway. The film version of the short story was directed by Henry King, written by Casey Robinson, and starred Gregory Peck as Harry, Susan Hayward as Helen, and Ava Gardner as Cynthia Green (a character invented for the film). The film’s ending does not mirror the story’s ending.
Considered by Hemingway to be one of his finest stories, “The Snows of Kilimanjaro” was first published in Esquire magazine in 1936 and then republished in The Fifth Column and the First Forty-Nine Stories (1938).
The film was nominated for two Oscars at the 25th Academy Awards, for Best Cinematography, Color and Best Art Direction, Color(Lyle R. Wheeler, John DeCuir, Thomas Little, Paul S. Fox).
The film has entered the public domain.
Peck recalls his memories from what he thinks is his deathbed in Africa
The film begins with the opening words of Hemingway’s story: “Kilimanjaro is a snow-covered mountain 19,710 feet high, and is said to be the highest mountain in Africa. Its western summit is called the Masai ‘Ngje Ngi,’ the House of God. Close to the western summit there is the dried and frozen carcass of a leopard. No one has explained what the leopard was seeking at that altitude.”
The story centers on the memories of disillusioned writer, Harry Street, who is on safari in Africa. He has a severely infected wound from a thorn prick, and lies outside his tent awaiting a slow death, though in the film it is pointed out he may have acquired the infection from leaping into a muddy river to rescue one of the safari’s porters from a hippo after he falls in the river. His female companion, Helen, nurses Harry and hunts game for the larder.
The loss of mobility brings self-reflection. In an often delirious state he remembers his past relationship with Cynthia Green, whom he met in Paris as members of the “Lost Generation.” Upon the sale of Harry’s first novel, rather than rent a nicer home, Harry wishes to go on safari to Africa. There he has his happiest moments, including bagging a rhino. Cynthia is pregnant, but worries about sharing this news with Harry, who is passionate about his travels and work as a journalist and author. Harry only learns about the pregnancy after her miscarriage. Suffering depression and sinking into alcoholism, she eventually leaves Harry for a flamenco dancerwhen she believes Harry is off for a job as a war correspondent.
Harry later becomes engaged to the wealthy and socially connected Countess Elizabeth, whom he meets on the Cote d’Azur; however, he still remains loyal to the memory of Cynthia. On the eve of their wedding, a drunken Elizabeth confronts Harry with a letter to Harry sent from Cynthia, who is now in Madrid. Elizabeth destroys the letter in front of Harry who stalks off to go to Spain. Unable to find Cynthia at the Madrid address on the envelope, he enlists to fight in the Spanish Civil War. During a battle he meets Cynthia, who is now an ambulance driver. Cynthia is mortally wounded, and Harry is shot and wounded when he deserts the battle to try to bring the dying Cynthia to a doctor.
Harry returns to Paris. While he is standing on the bridge watching the river, he meets Helen, who reminds him of Cynthia. After the death of his beloved mentor Uncle Bill, Harry receives as a bequest a letter from his uncle that gives him the riddle of the leopard. Harry’s bartender suggests that the leopard ended up there as he was on a false scent and became lost, but Harry takes Helen on a safari to Kenya to learn the answer of the riddle. He is injured and develops an infection. As Harry nears death, the protective Helen fights off a witch doctor. Following the directions in an emergency first aid manual, she opens Harry’s wound to release the infection. At the dawn a medical party arrives by airplane. The vultures and hyena who have been awaiting Harry’s death leave and never return. Harry realizes his love for Helen.
Gregory Peck and Ava Gardner meet
Gregory Peck as Harry Street
Susan Hayward as Helen
Ava Gardner as Cynthia Green
Hildegard Knef as Countess Elizabeth
Emmett Smith as Molo
Leo G. Carroll as Uncle Bill
Torin Thatcher as Mr. Johnson
Marcel Dalio as Emile
Leonard Carey as Dr. Simmons
Paul Thompson as Witch Doctor
Ava Norring as Beatrice
Helene Stanley as Connie
Vicente Gómez as Guitarist (as Vicente Gomez)
Richard Allan as Spanish Dancer
Charles Bates as Harry Street (17 years)
Lisa Ferraday as Vendeuse
Peck and Susan Hayward
Twentieth Century-Fox bought the rights to the story in June 1948, paying $125,000.
Humphrey Bogart, Richard Conte and Marlon Brando were all reported to be under consideration for the male lead, as was Dale Robertson.
The film was shot on location in Nairobi, Kenya, Cairo, Egypt, and the French Riviera, and studio work was done at Stage 14 in 20th Century Fox Studios. During production, on April 8, 1952, when Peck was carrying Gardner for a scene in the film, Peck wrenched his knee and production had to be postponed for 10 days while he recovered in his Pacific Palisades home, and Hildegard Knef came down with influenza in the studios. She was able though to sing two Cole Porter tunes in the film. Jazz musician Benny Carter performs early on in the film.
The bullfight sequences were archive footage, taken from Fox’s 1941 film Blood and Sand.
On location in Kenya
Helped by a star-studded cast, the film was one of the most successful films of the early 1950s and earned $12.5 million at the box office, very high for that period. The film was much acclaimed by critics, although some vary in their opinion of it, ranging from “simply plodding” to “much-maligned”. The cinematography was highly acclaimed in particular, and even the sophisticated interiors were praised.Bosley Crowther of The New York Times described the cinematography as “magnificent and exciting” and said that the “overall production in wonderful color is full of brilliant detail and surprise and the mood of nostalgia and wistful sadness that is built up in the story has its spell.”He praised Peck’s character for his “burning temper and melancholy moods”, although he said that Ava Gardner was “pliant and impulsive” in a role “as soggy and ambiguous as any in the film”. Variety praised the film as “an often engrossing dramatic mixture of high adventure, romance and symbolism,” adding that “the color coating used to display the story’s varied locales is beautiful,” and “Miss Gardner has never been better.” Harrison’s Reports called it “at once absorbing, exciting, and fascinating.” The Monthly Film Bulletin, however, wrote that Hemingway’s dialogue sounded “stilted and a little dated” on the screen, and that “any real seriousness that the film might have retained is nullified by the ending. Letting Harry survive makes of the film a naive kind of spiritual success story with a conventional boy-meets-lots-of-girls plot.” A more recent appraisal in Bowker’s Directory described it as having “plenty of action & romance” and stated that it was “the popular ‘celebrity film’ of its time”.Hemingway, who disliked the typical Hollywood happy ending, accepted the money for the film, but he could not bring himself to view it, according to one report. However, in a 1954 article for Look magazine, Hemingway said a hyena was the best performer in the picture, which the writer called The Snows of Zanuck.
The film was nominated for two Academy Awards; for Best Cinematography and Best Art Direction (Lyle R. Wheeler, John DeCuir, Thomas Little, Paul S. Fox).
Justice League (film)
Justice League is a 2017 American superhero film based on the DC Comics superhero team of the same name, distributed by Warner Bros. Pictures. It is the follow-up to 2016’s Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice and the fifth installment in the DC Extended Universe (DCEU). The film is directed by Zack Snyder, written by Chris Terrio and Joss Whedon, and features an ensemble castthat includes Ben Affleck, Henry Cavill, Gal Gadot, Ezra Miller, Jason Momoa, Ray Fisher, Amy Adams, Jeremy Irons, Diane Lane, Connie Nielsen, and J. K. Simmons. In the film, Batman and Wonder Woman recruit The Flash, Aquaman, and Cyborg after Superman’s death to save the world from the catastrophic threat of Steppenwolf and his army of Parademons.
The film was announced in October 2014, with Snyder on board to direct and Terrio attached to write the script. Initially titled Justice League Part One, with a second part to follow in 2019, the second film was indefinitely delayed to accommodate a standalone Batman film with Affleck. Principal photography commenced in April 2016 and ended in October 2016. After Snyder stepped down to deal with the death of his daughter, Joss Whedon was hired to oversee the remainder of post-production, including directing additional scenes written by himself; Snyder retained sole directorial credit, while Whedon received a screenwriting credit. Justice League premiered in Beijing on October 26, 2017, and was released in the United States in 2D, Real D 3D, and IMAX on November 17, 2017.
With an estimated production budget of $300 million, Justice League is one of the most expensive films ever made. The film grossed $657 million worldwide against a break-even point of $750 million, becoming a box office bomb and losing the studio around $60 million, while also making it the lowest overall gross of the DCEU. The film received mixed reviews from critics; although the action sequences and performances (particularly Gadot and Miller) were praised, the plot, writing, pacing, villain, and overuse of CGI were criticized. The film’s tone was met with a polarized reception, with some appreciating the lighter tone compared to the previous DCEU films, and others finding it inconsistent.
Thousands of years ago, Steppenwolf and his legions of Parademons attempted to take over Earth with the combined energies of three Mother Boxes. They were foiled by a unified army that includes the Olympian Gods, Amazons, Atlanteans, mankind, and a Green Lantern. After repelling Steppenwolf’s army, the Mother Boxes were separated and hidden in locations on the planet. In the present, mankind is in mourning over Superman for two years, whose death triggers the Mother Boxes to reactivate and Steppenwolf’s return to Earth. In an effort to regain favor with his master Darkseid, Steppenwolf aims to gather the boxes to form “The Unity”, which will destroy Earth’s ecology and terraform it in the image of Steppenwolf’s homeworld.
Steppenwolf retrieves the Mother Box from Themyscira, prompting Queen Hippolyta to warn her daughter Diana of Steppenwolf’s return. Diana joins Bruce Wayne in his attempt to unite other metahumans to their cause, with Wayne going after Arthur Curry and Barry Allen, while Diana tries to locate Victor Stone. Wayne fails to persuade Curry, but manages to recruit an enthusiastic Allen onto the team. Although Diana fails to convince Stone to join, he agrees to help them locate the threat if he discovers their location. Stone later joins the team after his father Silas and several other S.T.A.R. Labs employees are kidnapped by Steppenwolf seeking to acquire the Mother Box from mankind.
Steppenwolf attacks an Atlantean outpost to retrieve the next Mother Box, forcing Curry into action. The team receives intel from Commissioner James Gordon leading them to Steppenwolf’s army, based in an abandoned facility under Gotham Harbor. Although the group manages to rescue the kidnapped employees, the facility is flooded during combat, which traps the team until Curry helps delay the flood so they can escape. Stone retrieves the last Mother Box, which he had hidden, for the group to analyze. Stone reveals that his father used the Mother Box to rebuild Stone’s body after an accident almost cost him his life. Wayne decides to use the Mother Box to resurrect Superman, not only to help them fight off Steppenwolf’s invasion, but also to restore hope to mankind. Diana and Curry are hesitant about the idea, but Wayne forms a secret contingency plan in case Superman returns as hostile.
Clark Kent’s body is exhumed and placed in the amniotic fluid of the genesis chamber of the Kryptonian scout ship alongside the Mother Box, which in turn activates and successfully resurrects Superman. However, Superman’s memories have not returned, and he attacks the group after Stone accidentally launches a projectile at him. On the verge of being killed by Superman, Batman enacts his contingency plan: Lois Lane. Superman calms down and leaves with Lane to his family home in Smallville, where he reflects and his memories slowly come back. In the turmoil, the last Mother Box is left unguarded and Steppenwolf retrieves it with ease. Without Superman to aid them, the five heroes travel to a village in Russia where Steppenwolf aims to unite the Mother Boxes once again to remake Earth. The team fights their way through the Parademons to reach Steppenwolf, although they are unable to distract him enough for Stone to separate the Mother Boxes. Superman arrives and assists Allen in evacuating the city, as well as Stone in separating the Mother Boxes. The team defeats Steppenwolf, who, overcome with fear, is attacked by his own Parademons before they all teleport away.
After the battle, Bruce and Diana agree to set up a base of operations for the team, with room for more members. As the team is now established, Diana steps back into the public spotlight as a heroine; Barry acquires a job in Central City’s police department, impressing his father; Victor continues to explore and enhance his abilities with his father in S.T.A.R. Labs; Arthur embraces his Atlantean heritage and continues protecting people on the seas; and Superman resumes his life as reporter Clark Kent and as protector of Earth as well.
In a post-credits scene, Lex Luthor has escaped from Arkham Asylum and then recruits Slade Wilson to form their own league.
Ben Affleck, Ezra Miller, Gal Gadot, Ray Fisher and Jason Momoa at the 2017 San Diego Comic-Con.
Ben Affleck as Bruce Wayne / Batman: A wealthy socialite, and the owner of Wayne Enterprises. He dedicates himself to protecting Gotham City from its criminal underworld as a highly trained, masked vigilante equipped with various tools and weapons. Affleck noted on how the film gave him an opportunity to reinvent Batman and portray a more classic take on the character. He described that in the film, audiences will see Batman as more heroic, and more of a leader. “Batman is by nature, [while] not necessarily anti-social, pretty private, pretty a loner,” Affleck says. “And then in this movie he’s thrust into the role of having to not only work with people, but bring them together and convince them to come in and try to … somehow with Wonder Woman hold all that community effort together. That was a really interesting thing to play for me, and it also does take us to a more traditional role for Batman in the Justice League comics, and his role with the Justice League versus the sort of less typical version we saw in Batman v Superman, where he was blinded by rage and wanted to take on Superman.”
Henry Cavill as Kal-El / Clark Kent / Superman: A member of, and inspiration for, the Justice League. He is a Kryptonian survivor, and a journalist for the Daily Planet based in Metropolis. In Justice League, Superman was portrayed as more optimistic and hopeful. The character was intentionally excluded from all Justice League marketing materials to emphasize his death as depicted on Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice.
Gal Gadot as Diana Prince / Wonder Woman: An antiquities dealer, acquaintance of Wayne, and an immortal Amazonian warrior, who is the crown princess of Themyscira and daughter of Hippolyta and Zeus. She is endowed with metahuman attributes and abilities inherited from her parents.
Ezra Miller as Barry Allen / The Flash: A Central City University student, who can move at superhuman speeds with his ability to tap into the Speed Force.
Jason Momoa as Arthur Curry / Aquaman: The heir to the throne of the undersea nation of Atlantis. His metahuman aquatic abilities and physical attributes originate from his Atlantean physiology. Momoa was cast as Aquaman in October 2014, and made a cameo role in Batman v. Superman: Dawn of Justice. Momoa stated that the Justice League film would be released first, before the release of the solo Aquaman film, which may be about the hero’s origin story.
Ray Fisher as Victor Stone / Cyborg: A former college athlete who, after being cybernetically reconstructed after a nearly fatal car accident, is turned into a techno-organic being enhanced by reactive, adaptive biomimetic alien technology. His enhancements include the abilities of flight, variable weaponry and technopathy. Fisher portrays the character through the use of motion capturefor the cybernetic portion of his body. Fisher was cast as Cyborg in April 2014, and made a cameo in Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice.
Amy Adams as Lois Lane: An undaunted and compassionate award-winning journalist for the Daily Planet and the love interest for Kent. Adams confirmed that she would reprise her role as Lois Lane in Justice League and its untitled sequel.
Jeremy Irons as Alfred Pennyworth: Wayne’s butler, chief of security, and trusted confidant.
Diane Lane as Martha Kent: Kent’s adoptive mother.
Connie Nielsen as Hippolyta: Diana’s mother and Queen of the Amazons.
J. K. Simmons as James Gordon: The Commissioner of the Gotham City Police Department, and close ally of Batman.
Ciarán Hinds as Steppenwolf: An alien military officer from Apokolips who leads an army of Parademons and is searching for the three Mother Boxes held on Earth. The character is described as “old, tired” and trying to find a way to escape his role of servitude under Darkseid. Hinds portrayed the villain through use of motion capture and received some advice in the process from Liam Neeson, who had recently done similar work in A Monster Calls. After the release of the film, Hinds was reportedly unhappy with the final cut of the film, which trimmed down the backstory and characterization of Steppenwolf.
The Olympian Old Gods Zeus, Ares and Artemis are portrayed by fitness model Sergi Constance, stuntman Nick McKinless, and MMA fighter Aurore Lauzeral, respectively. All three were required to reach a specific degree of physicality, with Snyder instructing McKinless to sport “veins like worms and paper thin skin”. In the finished film, McKinless’ face was replaced with David Thewlis’ face, and Thewlis received the credit as Ares. Robin Wright reprises her role as Antiope during a flashback sequence. Amber Heard portrays the Atlantean Mera. Two ancient kings of Earth appear during a scene depicting Steppenwolf’s first invasion, including King Atlan of Atlantis and Arthur Pendragon of ancient England; portrayed by Julian Lewis Jones and Francis Magee, respectively. Joe Morton reprises his role as Silas Stone, Victor Stone’s father and S.T.A.R. Labs’ head while Billy Crudup appears, uncredited, as Henry Allen, Barry Allen’s father. Joe Manganiello and Jesse Eisenberg appear uncredited in a post-credits scene as Slade Wilson / Deathstrokeand Lex Luthor, respectively. Michael McElhatton appears as the leader of a group of terrorists who clash with Wonder Woman early in the film, while Holt McCallanymakes an uncredited appearance as a burglar. Marc McClure, who portrayed Jimmy Olsen in the Christopher Reeve Superman film series, has a cameo as a police officer. An unidentified Green Lantern appears at the beginning of the film, created by use of CGI and embodied by an uncredited actor. Willem Dafoe and Kiersey Clemons filmed scenes as Nuidis Vulko and Iris West, although their roles were cut from the final film. Both actors are signed for multiple films and set to appear in the future installments of the franchise.Dafoe appears in Aquaman and it was reported in November 2017 that the studio wanted to recast Clemons in a different role. Laurence Fishburne, who portrays Perry White in the DC Extended Universe (DCEU), said he declined to reprise his role in the film due to scheduling conflicts.
Early in production, a scene depicting Green Lanterns Kilowog and Tomar-Re visiting Batman was filmed as another post-credits scene, further teasing the upcoming Green Lantern Corps, but the scene was later scrapped. In March 2016, producer Charles Roven said that Green Lantern would not appear in any film before Justice League Part Two, and stated that they “could put Green Lantern in some introduction in Justice League 2, or barring that, a movie after.” Later, Snyder revealed that Ryan Zheng was cast to portray Ryan Choi in the film, setting up the character’s future as The Atom. These scenes were cut from the theatrical film.
We’re going to make a Justice League movie, whether it’s now or 10 years from now. But we’re not going to do it and Warners is not going to do it until we know it’s right.
—Producer Gregory Noveck, on whether Warner Bros. is going to do a Justice League film, 2008.
In February 2007, it was announced that Warner Bros. had hired husband and wife duo Michele and Kieran Mulroney to write a script for a Justice League film. The news came around the same time that Joss Whedon’s long-developed Wonder Woman film was cancelled, as well as The Flash, written and directed by David S. Goyer. Reportedly titled Justice League: Mortal, the script by Michele and Kiernan Mulroney was submitted to Warner Bros. in June 2007, receiving positive feedback, which prompted the studio to immediately fast track production in the hope of beginning filming before the 2007–08 Writers Guild of America strike. Warner Bros. was less willing to proceed with development of a sequel to Superman Returns, having been disappointed with its box office. Brandon Routh was not approached to reprise the role of Superman in Justice League: Mortal, nor was Christian Bale from Batman Begins. Warner Bros. intended for Justice League: Mortal to be the start of a new film franchise, and to branch out into separate sequels and spin-offs. Shortly after filming The Dark Knight, Bale stated in an interview that “It’d be better if it doesn’t tread on the toes of what our Batman series is doing,” and felt it would make more sense for Warner Bros. to release the film after The Dark Knight Rises. Jason Reitman was the original choice to direct Justice League, but he turned it down, as he considers himself an independent filmmaker and prefers to stay out of big budget superhero films. George Millersigned to direct in September 2007, with Barrie Osbourne producing on a projected $220 million budget.
The following month, roughly 40 actors and actresses auditioned for the ensemble superhero roles, among them Joseph Cross, Michael Angarano, Max Thieriot, Minka Kelly, Adrianne Palicki and Scott Porter. Miller had intended to cast younger actors, as he wanted them to “grow” into their roles over the course of several films. D. J. Cotrona was cast as Superman, along with Armie Hammer as Batman. Jessica Biel reportedly declined to play Wonder Woman role after negotiations. The character was also linked to actresses Teresa Palmer and Shannyn Sossamon, along with Mary Elizabeth Winstead, who confirmed that she had auditioned. Ultimately, Megan Gale was cast as Wonder Woman, while Palmer was cast as Talia al Ghul, whom Miller had in mind to act with a Russian accent. The script for Justice League: Mortal would have featured John Stewartas Green Lantern, a role originally offered to Columbus Short. Hip hop recording artist and rapper Common was cast, with Adam Brody as Barry Allen / Flash, and Jay Baruchel as the lead villain, Maxwell Lord. Longtime Miller collaborator Hugh Keays-Byrne had been cast in an unnamed role, rumored to be Martian Manhunter. Santiago Cabrera was eventually revealed to be Aquaman after the film was cancelled. Marit Allen was hired as the original costume designer before her untimely death in November 2007, and the responsibilities were assumed by Weta Workshop.
However, the writers strike began that same month and placed the film on hold. Warner Bros. had to let the options lapse for the cast, but development was fast tracked once more in February 2008 when the strike ended. Warner Bros. and Miller wanted to start filming immediately, but production was pushed back three months. Originally, the majority of Justice League: Mortal was to be shot at Fox Studios Australia in Sydney, with other locations scouted nearby at local colleges, and Sydney Heads doubling for Happy Harbor. The Australian Film Commission had a say with casting choices, giving way for George Miller to cast Gale, Palmer and Keays-Bryne, all Australian natives. The production crew was composed entirely of Australians, but the Australian government denied Warner Bros. a 40 percent tax rebate as they felt they had not hired enough Australian actors. Miller was frustrated, stating that “A once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for the Australian film industry is being frittered away because of very lazy thinking. They’re throwing away hundreds of millions of dollars of investment that the rest of the world is competing for and, much more significantly, highly skilled creative jobs.” Production offices were then moved to Vancouver Film Studios in Canada. Filming was pushed back to July 2008, while Warner Bros was still confident they could produce the film for a summer 2009 release.
Zack Snyder, the director of Man of Steel, Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justiceand Justice League.
With production delays continuing, and the success of The Dark Knight in July 2008, Warner Bros. decided to focus on the development of individual films featuring the main heroes, allowing director Christopher Nolan to separately complete his Batman trilogy with The Dark Knight Risesin 2012. Warner Bros. relaunched development for a solo Green Lantern film, released in 2011 as a critical and financial disappointment. Meanwhile, film adaptations for The Flash and Wonder Woman continued to languish in development, while filming for a Superman reboot commenced in 2011 with Man of Steel, produced by Nolan and written by Batman screenwriter David S. Goyer. In October 2012, following its legal victory over Joe Shuster’s estate for the rights to Superman, Warner Bros. announced that it planned to move ahead with the Justice League film. Shortly after filming on Man of Steel was complete, Warner Bros hired Will Beall to write the script for a new Justice League film. Warner Bros. president Jeff Robinov explained that Man of Steel would be “setting the tone for what the movies are going to be like going forward. In that, it’s definitely a first step.” The film included references to the existence of other superheroes in the DC Universe, and set the tone for a shared fictional universe of DC Comics characters on film. Goyer stated that should Green Lantern appear in a future installment, it would be a rebooted version of the character, unconnected to the 2011 film.
With the release of Man of Steel in June 2013, Goyer was hired to write a sequel, as well as a new Justice League, with the Beall draft being scrapped. The sequel was later revealed to be Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice, a team-up film featuring Henry Cavill as Superman, Ben Affleck as Batman, Gal Gadot as Wonder Woman, Ezra Miller as The Flash, Jason Momoa as Aquaman, and Ray Fisher as Victor Stone / Cyborg, the latter three in minor roles that became more significant in the Justice League film. The universe is separate from Nolan and Goyer’s work on The Dark Knight trilogy, although Nolan was still involved as an executive producer for Batman v Superman. In April 2014, it was announced that Zack Snyder would also direct Goyer’s Justice League script. Warner Bros. was reportedly courting Chris Terrio to rewrite Justice League the following July, after having been impressed with his rewrite of Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice. On October 15, 2014, Warner Bros. announced the film would be released in two parts, with Part One on November 17, 2017, and Part Two on June 14, 2019. Snyder was set to direct both films. In early July 2015, EW revealed that the script for Justice League Part One had been completed by Terrio. Zack Snyder stated that the film would be inspired by the New Gods comic series by Jack Kirby. Although Justice League was initially announced as a two-part film, with the second part set for release two years after the first, Snyder stated in June 2016 that they would be two distinct, separate films and not one film split into two parts, both being stand-alone stories.
Principal photography commenced on April 11, 2016, with shooting taking place at Warner Bros. Studios, Leavesden, as well as various locations around London and Scotland. Additional filming took place in Chicago, Illinois, Los Angeles, and Djúpavík, in the Westfjords of Iceland. Snyder’s longtime cinematographer Larry Fong was replaced by Fabian Wagner due to scheduling conflicts. Ben Affleck served as executive producer. In May 2016, it was revealed that Geoff Johns and Jon Berg would produce the Justice League films, and would also be in charge of the DC Extended Universe, after the largely negative critical reception of Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice. The same month, Irons stated that the Justice League storyline would be more linear and simple, compared to the theatrical version of Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice. Johns confirmed on June 3, 2016 that the title of the film is Justice League, and later stated that the film would be “hopeful and optimistic” in comparison to previous DC Extended Universe (DCEU) films.
Justice League had a troubled production. During filming, it was reported that the rewrites by Geoff Johns caused issues with Chris Terrio and Warner Bros. executives. Warner Bros. was unsatisfied with how the film was shaping up under Snyder, because of the negative feedback that Batman v Superman received. It was reported that Warner Bros. held a footage summit for writers that include Joss Whedon, Wonder Woman writer Allan Heinberg, Seth Grahame-Smith, and Andrea Berloff. This caused numerous rewrites as Justice League was filming. Whedon was eventually hired by Warner Bros. after Snyder stepped down for directorial duties during the post-production. Filming wrapped in October 2016.
Joss Whedon took over the post-production of Justice League after Snyder stepped down.
In May 2017, Snyder stepped down from directorial duties during post-production of the film to properly deal with the death of his daughter, Autumn Snyder. Joss Whedon, whom Snyder had previously brought on to rewrite some additional scenes, took over to handle post-production duties in Snyder’s place. In July 2017, it was announced the film was undergoing two months of reshoots in London and Los Angeles, with Warner Bros. putting about $25 million into them, more than the typical $6–10 million additional filming costs, which brought the budget of the film up to $300 million. The reshoots coincided with Cavill’s schedule for Mission: Impossible – Fallout, for which he had grown a mustache which he was contracted to keep while filming. While Fallout director Christopher McQuarrie initially gave the producers of Justice League permission to have Cavill shave the mustache in exchange for the $3 million it would cost to shut down production on Fallout and then digitally fill the mustache in, executives from Paramount Pictures rejected the idea. Justice League’s VFX team was then forced to used special effects to digitally remove the mustache in post-production.
In an interview, producer Charles Roven said: “Let’s just say 80, 85 percent of the movie is what was originally shot. There’s only so much you can do with other 15, 20 percent of the movie”. Whedon received a screenwriting credit on the film alongside Chris Terrio, while Snyder received sole director’s credit.
Warner Bros. CEO Kevin Tsujihara mandated the film to be under two hours. The company also did not opt to delay of the film’s release despite the fact that there had been numerous problems in post-production, so that the executives will receive their cash bonuses before the company’s merger with AT&T. In February 2018, it was reported that Snyder was fired from directorial duties from Justice League, after his cut was deemed “unwatchable” according to Collider’s Matt Goldberg. “I’d heard similar things from separate sources over the last year as well, I also heard that Snyder’s rough-cut of the movie was ‘unwatchable’ (a word that jumped out at me because it’s rare you hear two separate sources use exactly the same adjective). Of course, even if that’s true, there’s obviously more to the story since rough cuts can be fixed up with reshoots, rewrites, etc.”, Goldberg wrote. According to DC Comics publisher, comic book artist Jim Lee, Snyder was not fired. Speaking at the Calgary Comic and Entertainment Expo, Lee stated “that he (Snyder) was not fired at all and that he stepped down from the production due to a family matter”, as far as he knew.
Main article: Justice League (soundtrack)
In March 2016, Hans Zimmer, who co-composed the score for Man of Steel and Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice, stated that he had officially retired from the “superhero business”. Junkie XL, who wrote and composed the soundtrack of Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice with Zimmer, was originally scoring the film. In June 2017, Danny Elfman was announced to have controversially replaced Junkie XL. Elfman had previously composed the films Batman and Batman Returns, and the theme music for Batman: The Animated Series. Elfman used the Batman theme music from the 1989 film Batman. The John Williams’ Superman theme was used during “a dark, twisted moment” in the film, the time when a resurrected Superman fights the Justice League. The film features a cover of Leonard Cohen’s “Everybody Knows” performed by Sigrid, “Icky Thump” performed by the White Stripes, and a cover of the Beatles’ “Come Together” performed by Gary Clark Jr. and Junkie XL. WaterTower Music released the soundtrack album digitally on November 10, 2017, with a release of the physical format on December 8.
The film held its world premiere in Beijing on October 26, 2017, and was theatrically released in North America and elsewhere around the world in standard, RealD 3D and IMAX on November 17, 2017. Its Japan premiere took place on November 20, 2017 in Tokyo, with only Ezra Miller and Ray Fisher from the main cast attending. In the United States, the film opened to 4,051 theaters in its widest release. Justice League was shown in cinemas for 119 days (17 weeks).
Superman was intentionally left out on all early Justice League marketing materials, including trailers, clips and posters, which actor Cavill commented as “ridiculous”. Despite his character being hidden from promotional materials, Cavill still joined the rest of the cast on the film’s press tour. Clark Kent was revealed in a final trailer before the release of the film, but edited in a way that writers felt Lois Lane was dreaming about Clark. Sponsorship and marketing partners of the film included AT&T, Gillette, Mercedes-Benz, and TCL.
Justice League was released on digital download on February 13, 2018, and was released on Blu-ray Disc, Blu-ray 3D, 4K Ultra-HD Blu-ray and DVD on March 13, 2018 in various international markets. The Blu-ray features two deleted scenes titled Return of Superman. As of January 18, 2019, it has made $15.2 million in DVD sales and $38.7 million in Blu-ray sales, totaling an estimated of $53.9 million.
Justice League grossed $229 million in the United States and Canada, and $428.9 million in other territories, for a worldwide total of $657.9 million, against a production budget of $300 million. It had a worldwide opening of $278.8 million, the 24th biggest of all-time. Up against an estimated break-even point of as much as $750 million, Deadline Hollywood reported that the film lost the studio around $60 million. Due to the film losing the studio money, the movie was deemed a “box office bomb” or “flop”.
In the United States and Canada, industry tracking initially forecast the film debuting to $110–120 million from 4,051 theaters (including 400 IMAX screens). It made $13 million from Thursday night previews, up from the $11 million made by Wonder Woman the previous June. However, after making $38.8 million on its first day (including Thursday previews), weekend projections were lowered to $95 million. It ended up debuting to $93.8 million, down 45% from Batman v Superman’s opening of $166 million, and being the first film of the DCEU to open under $100 million. Deadline attributed the low figure to lukewarm audience reaction to the film and most of its predecessors, as well as poor critical reception, and film review aggregation website Rotten Tomatoes not posting their aggregated score until the day before release, causing speculation and doubt from filmgoers. In its second weekend, the film dropped 56% to $41.1 million, finishing second at the box office, behind newcomer Coco. It was the second-best second weekend hold of the DCEU, behind Wonder Woman’s 43%, but the lowest overall gross. In its third week it again finished second behind Coco, grossing $16.7 million. It made $9.7 million in its fourth week and $4.3 million in its fifth, finishing a respective second and fifth at the box office. In 2018, Forbes compared the drastic uncohesive shift from Snyder’s darker films Man of Steel and Batman v Superman to the lighter Justice League (co-written by Whedon), to the similarly drastic and uncohesive change in tone experienced from the older 1989 and 1992 Tim Burton’s Batman films to the direct light-hearted sequels directed by Schumacher, although noting the former shift in tone was better received than the one in Justice League, affecting box office, due to going against the expectations of Snyder fans in its attempt to reach a higher demographic, while alienating its own established core audience.
Internationally, the film was projected to debut to $215–235 million for a worldwide opening of $325–355 million. It made $8.5 million on its first day from nine countries, including South Korea, France and Brazil. It ended up having a $185 million international debut from 65 countries, including $57.1 million from China, $9.8 million from the United Kingdom, $9.6 million from Mexico and $8.8 million from South Korea. The film broke a record in the Philippines with a debut of $1.12M (PHP 57.3M), making it the biggest industry opening day for a film there in 2017. In Brazil, the film opened to $14.2 million, the biggest opening in the country’s history. Outside North America, the films largest markets were China ($106 million), Brazil ($41 million), Mexico ($24.8 million), and United Kingdom ($24 million).
The performances of Gal Gadot (left) and Ezra Miller were widely praised by critics.
Justice League received mixed reviews. It was praised for its action sequences and acting (primarily by Gadot and Miller) but criticized for the screenplay, pacing and CGI, as well as its thin plot, and the underdeveloped villain. On review aggregatorwebsite Rotten Tomatoes, the film has an approval rating of 40%, based on 326 reviews, with an average rating of 5.3/10. The website’s critical consensus reads, “Justice League leaps over a number of DC movies, but its single bound isn’t enough to shed the murky aesthetic, thin characters, and chaotic action that continue to dog the franchise.” Metacritic, which uses a weighted average, assigned the film a score of 45 out of 100, based on 52 critics, indicating “mixed or average reviews”. Audiences polled by CinemaScore gave the film an average grade of “B+” on an A+ to F scale, while PostTrak reported filmgoers gave it an 85% overall positive score (average 4 out of 5 stars) and a 69% “definite recommend”.
Richard Roeper of the Chicago Sun-Times gave the film 3.5 out of 4 stars, praising the cast, especially Gadot, and saying “It’s a putting-the-band-together origins movie, executed with great fun and energy.” Owen Gleiberman of Variety gave the film a positive review and wrote, “Justice League … has been conceived, in each and every frame, to correct the sins of Batman v Superman. It’s not just a sequel—it’s an act of franchise penance. The movie … is never messy or bombastic. It’s light and clean and simple (at times almost too simple), with razory repartee and combat duels that make a point of not going on for too long.”
Bilge Ebiri of the Village Voice similarly gave it a positive review: “… action scenes start and stop and then start again, then go in different directions, and it was a few moments into the Big Climactic Face-Off before I realized we’d arrived at the Big Climactic Face-Off. But these off-kilter rhythms actually lend the film a pleasant unpredictability. As does the humor, which often sits uneasily next to the moodiness, but is somehow fast and witty enough to work.” 
Writing for Rolling Stone, Peter Travers gave the film 2.5 out of 4 stars, praising the cast but criticizing the action sequences and writing, saying: “The scenes of the League members together, bickering and bonding, spike the film with humor and genuine feeling, creating a rooting interest in the audience. Without it, the film would crumble.” Conversely, Todd McCarthy of The Hollywood Reporter, while praising Gadot and Miller, called the film visually ugly and boring, saying, “Fatigue, repetition and a laborious approach to exposition are the keynotes of this affair, which is also notable for how Ben Affleck, donning the bat suit for the second time, looks like he’d rather be almost anywhere else but here.”
Sara Stewart of the New York Post gave the film 1.5 out of 4 stars: “Justice League is a pointless flail of expensive (yet somehow cheap-looking) CGI that no amount of tacked-on quips, or even Gadot’s luminescent star power, can rescue. Like Cyborg (Ray Fisher), one of its ostensible heroes, Justice League is patched together from disparate elements. Original director Zack Snyder left partway through due to a death in the family, leaving Joss Whedon to finish up. The result? All the plodding, gray, generic action of a Snyder film with stabs of Whedonian humor that almost never feel organic. There’s no sense of purpose here, not even a sense of place.”
Writing for The Washington Post, Alyssa Rosenberg also returned with a negative review: “… if Justice League is a symbol of just how entrenched superhero movies have become in the Hollywood ecosystem, it’s also a potent illustration that success hasn’t necessarily artistically elevated the genre. It’s not just that, beat by beat, Justice League feels nearly identical to so many of the superhero movies that have come before, or that it features some of the ugliest, most pointless special effects I’ve seen at the movies in a long time. It’s that the darn thing feels depressingly haphazard and thoughtless, and that it’s guaranteed to make a ton of money anyway. Superhero fans are a ridiculously powerful market; they deserve better than this.”
James Berardinelli gave it 2 out of 4 stars: “When Marvel mapped out the trajectory for their Cinematic Universe, they were sometimes criticized for overthinking and overplanning. Nearly every major hero – Iron Man, Hulk, Captain America, Thor – had his own movie. Many of the secondary characters (including the villain) boasted significant screen time in one or more of the first five films. Only once all these things had been accomplished were the characters brought together for The Avengers. The formula worked. The Avengers was popcorn bliss, a superhero nirvana. DC, however, came late to the party. Riding the critical and popular success of Christopher Nolan’s Batman trilogy and smarting from the disappointing performance of Bryan Singer’s Superman Returns, they dithered and dallied and didn’t begin planning out the post-Dark Knight campaign until the MCU movie count was past the half-dozen mark and rising. The late start resulted in a rushed and ununified approach. Justice League arrives with three major characters who haven’t previously been introduced. As a result, this film has a lot of heavy background lifting to do – too much, in fact, for it to be able to tell a worthwhile story. 70% of the movie is set-up for future tales. The rest is an overlong smack-down between our heroes and possibly the worst villain ever to appear in a comic book picture.”
Writing for the Film Ireland Magazine, Ellen Murray found the characters interesting, but their setting unworthy: “… there is something undeniably thrilling in seeing these iconic characters work together on the big screen. It’s just a shame that their current incarnation, moulded in Zack Snyder’s vision, lacks a strong framework to allow them to better shine. The characters save the film from being a complete and utter disaster, but they alone can’t save it from being a mild disaster. While undoubtedly Snyder is genuinely passionate about these characters, he seems to suffer from a fundamental misunderstanding of what they represent and, most importantly, what cinema-goers expect from a story involving them. Justice League understands that a character like Superman means something to people; it just can’t show us convincingly why”.
Justice League was short-listed as a potential candidate for the 90th Academy Award for Best Visual Effects, along with another DC Extended Universe (DCEU) film, Wonder Woman. However, neither film made it to the final list of nominations.
The divisive reaction towards the final highlighted cut of the film, with Zack Snyder leaving directorial duties and the final cut of the film in the hands of Joss Whedon, has led to an argument comparing the situation to the one experienced by the film Superman II. Both Justice League and Superman II feature a director that was replaced, for different reasons, before completion of a film, which lead to a second director coming in and making substantial changes to the tone of each film. Although the reasoning behind each director’s departure differs, Richard Donner was able to complete his Superman II cut in 2005. In the belief that Snyder had shot enough material for a finished film, a campaign for a “Snyder Cut” was started to allow Snyder to receive a similar treatment to Donner. Arguments are made that Snyder’s vision would be more cohesive to the previous films than the actual theatrical cut, which Snyder has refused to see. Ultimately, Warner Bros has denied any intention of making a “Snyder Cut”.
A sequel was scheduled to be released in June 2019 but has since been delayed to accommodate the release for a standalone Batman film. By March 2017, producer Charles Roven announced that Zack Snyder would return as director. In October 2017, J. K. Simmons stated that the studio is working on the script of the sequel, alongside The Batman. Shortly after the release of Justice League, Henry Cavill stated that he is under contract with Warner Bros. to play Superman for one more film. In December 2017, it was reported that there were “no immediate plans” for Zack Snyder to direct a Justice League sequel, or any other DC films, with Snyder instead being relegated to an executive producer position. This comes after a reshuffling of film production staff at Warner Bros. due to the film’s mixed critical reception and disappointing financial performance.[
The Ghost and the Darkness
The Ghost and the Darkness is a 1996 American historical adventure film directed by Stephen Hopkins and starring Val Kilmer and Michael Douglas. The screenplay was written by William Goldman. The story is a fictionalized account of the Tsavo Man-Eaters, two Tsavo lions that attacked and killed workers at Tsavo, Kenya, during the building of the Uganda-Mombasa Railway in East Africa in 1898.
The film received a mixed critical response upon release and later won the Academy Award for Best Sound Editing for supervising sound editor Bruce Stambler.
In 1898, Sir Robert Beaumont, the primary financier of a railroad project in Tsavo, Kenya, is furious because the project is running behind schedule. He seeks out the expertise of Lt. Colonel John Henry Patterson, a British military engineer, to get the project back on track. Patterson travels from England to Tsavo, telling his wife, Helena, he will complete the project and be back in London for the birth of their son. He meets British supervisor Angus Starling, Kenyan foreperson Samuel, and Doctor David Hawthorne. Hawthorne tells Patterson of a recent lion attack that has affected the project.
That night, Patterson kills an approaching lion with one shot, earning the respect of the workers and bringing the project back on schedule. However, not long afterwards, Mahina, the construction foreman, is dragged from his tent in the middle of the night. His half-eaten body is found the next morning. Patterson then attempts a second night-time lion hunt, but the following morning, another worker is found dead at the opposite end of the camp from Patterson’s position.
Patterson’s only comfort now is the letters he receives from his wife. Soon, while the workers are gathering wood and building fire pits around the tents, a lion attacks the camp in the middle of the day, killing another worker. While Patterson, Starling and Samuel are tracking it to one end of the camp, another lion leaps upon them from the roof of a building, killing Starling with a slash to the throat and slashes Patterson on the left arm. Despite the latter’s efforts to kill them, both lions escape. Samuel states that there has never been a pair of man-eaters; they have always been solitary hunters.
The workers, led by Abdullah, begin to turn on Patterson. Work on the bridge comes to a halt. Patterson requests soldiers from England to protect the workers, but is denied. During a visit to the camp, Beaumont tells Patterson that he will ruin his reputation if the bridge is not finished on time and that he will contact the famous hunter Charles Remington to help because Patterson has been unable to kill the animals.
Remington arrives with skilled Maasai warriors to help kill the lions. They dub the lions “the Ghost” and “the Darkness” because of their notorious methods of attack. The initial attempt fails when Patterson’s borrowed gun misfires. The warriors decide to leave, but Remington stays behind. He constructs a new hospital for sick and injured workers and tempts the lions to the abandoned building with animal parts and blood. When the lions fall for the trap, Remington and Patterson shoot at them; they flee and attack the new hospital, killing many patients and Hawthorne.
Abdullah and the construction men leave, and only Patterson, Remington, and Samuel remain behind. Patterson and Remington locate the animals’ lair, discovering the bones of dozens of the lions’ victims. That night, Remington kills one of the pair by using Patterson and a baboon as bait. Patterson discovers that the remaining lion has dragged Remington from his tent and killed him; Patterson and Samuel cremate Remington’s corpse on a pyre at the spot where he died. Grief-stricken and desperate to end the carnage, the two men burn the tall grass surrounding the camp, driving the surviving lion toward the camp (and the ambush that they set there). The lion attacks them on the partially constructed bridge and after a lengthy fight, Patterson finally kills it. Abdullah and the construction workers return, and the bridge is completed on time.
Val Kilmer as Col. John Henry Patterson
Michael Douglas as Charles Remington
John Kani as Samuel
Brian McCardie as Angus Starling
Bernard Hill as Doctor David Hawthorne
Tom Wilkinson as Sir Robert Beaumont
Emily Mortimer as Helena Patterson
Om Puri as Abdullah
Henry Cele as Mahina
The film is based upon The Man-Eaters of Tsavo by Lieutenant Colonel John Henry Patterson, the man who actually killed both real lions.
William Goldman first heard about the story when travelling in Africa in 1984, and thought it would make a good script. In 1989 he pitched the story to Paramount as a cross between Lawrence of Arabia and Jaws, and they commissioned him to write a screenplay which he delivered in 1990.
“My particular feeling is that they were evil,” said Goldman of the lions. “I believe that for nine months, evil popped out of the ground at Tsavo.”
The script fictionalises Patterson’s account, introducing an American big game hunter called Charles Remington. The character was based on Anglo-Indian big game hunter Charles H. Ryall, superintendent of the Railway Police. In original drafts the character was called Redbeard, and Goldman says his purpose in the story was to create an imposing character who could be killed by the lions and make Patterson seem more brave; Goldman says his ideal casting for the role would have been Burt Lancaster.
According to Goldman, Kevin Costner expressed interest in playing Patterson, but Paramount wanted to use Tom Cruise who ultimately declined. Work on the film slowed until Michael Douglas moved his producing unit with partner Steven Reuther, Constellation Films, to Paramount. Douglas read the script and loved it, calling it “an incredible thriller about events that actually took place.” Douglas decided to produce and Stephen Hopkins was hired to direct.
Val Kilmer, who had just made Batman Forever and was a frequent visitor to Africa then expressed enthusiasm for the script, which enabled the project to be financed.
The part of Remington was originally offered to Sean Connery and Anthony Hopkins but both declined; the producers were considering asking Gérard Depardieu when Douglas decided to play the role himself. Stephen Hopkins later said he was unhappy about this.
In early drafts of the script, Remington was originally going to be an enigmatic figure but when Douglas chose to play him, the character’s role was expanded and was given a history. In Goldman’s book Which Lie Did I Tell?, the screenwriter argues that Douglas’ decision ruined the mystery of the character, making him a “wimp” and a “loser”.
The film was shot mainly on location at Songimvelo Game Reserve in South Africa, rather than Kenya, due to tax laws. Many Maasai characters in the film were actually portrayed by South African actors, although the Maasai depicted during the hunt were portrayed by real Maasai warriors who were hired for the movie.
While the real man-eaters were, like all lions from the Tsavo region, a more aggressive, maneless variety, those used for filming were actually the least aggressive available, for both safety and aesthetic reasons. The film’s lions were two male lions with manes. They were brothers named Caesar and Bongo, who were residents of the Bowmanville Zoo in Bowmanville, Ontario, Canada, both of whom were also featured in George of the Jungle. The film also featured three other lions: two from France and one from the USA.
Director Stephen Hopkins later said of the shoot:
We had snake bites, scorpion bites, tick bite fever, people getting hit by lightning, floods, torrential rains and lightning storms, hippos chasing people through the water, cars getting swept into the water, and several deaths of crew members, including two drownings…. Val came to the set under the worst conditions imaginable. He was completely exhausted from doing The Island of Dr. Moreau; he was dealing with the unfavorable publicity from that set; he was going through a divorce; he barely had time to get his teeth into this role before we started; and he is in nearly every scene in this movie. But I worked him six or seven days a week for four months under really adverse conditions, and he really came through. He had a passion for this film.
The film won the Academy Award for Best Sound Editing (Bruce Stambler) at the 69th Academy Awards. However, Val Kilmer was nominated for the Razzie Award for Worst Supporting Actor. Reviews were mixed, with Rotten Tomatoes giving it a 52% rating based on 46 reviews. Roger Ebert said the film was so awful it “lacked the usual charm of being so bad it’s funny” adding it was “an African adventure that makes the Tarzan movies look subtle and realistic”. Ebert would put the film on his list of the worst movies of 1997. Conversely, the late David R. Ellis listed this film at #8 on his “Top 10 Animal Horror Movies” countdown, a list he made to promote the release of Shark Night 3D.
Hopkins said in a 1998 interview that the film “was a mess… I haven’t been able to watch it.”
In India, the film was remade in Telugu as Mrugaraju and released in 2001.
The Ghost and the Darkness was released by Paramount Home Video on VHS on April 1, 1997. Later on, the film is available as a one-disc DVD. There are no special features besides a theatrical trailer for the film. The film was released on LaserDisc in 1997 as a one-disc, double-sided release featuring a Dolby Digital audio track.
The Tsavo Man-Eaters on display in the Field Museum of Natural History in Chicago
Although Patterson claimed the lions were responsible for up to 135 deaths, the definitive peer-reviewed paper on man-eating lions and the circumstances surrounding this notorious event states that only about 28–31 killings can be verified (Kerbis Peterhans & Gnoske, 2001). (This figure does not take into account any people who may have been killed but not eaten by the animals.)
Patterson’s 1907 book itself states that “between them (the lions) no less than 28 Indian coolies, in addition to scores of unfortunate African natives of whom no official record was kept” were killed. This lesser number was confirmed in the definitive paper on man-eating behavior and the Tsavo lions by Kerbis Peterhans and Gnoske (2001) and soon thereafter in Dr. Bruce Patterson’s definitive book The Lions of Tsavo: Exploring the Legacy of Africa’s Notorious Man-Eaters published by McGraw-Hill in 2004. Patterson wrote the book at the Field Museum in Chicago, where the lions are on display. Kerbis Peterhans & Gnoske showed that the greater toll attributed to the lions resulted from a pamphlet written by Col. Patterson in 1925, stating “these two ferocious brutes killed and devoured, under the most appalling circumstances, 135 Indian and African artisans and laborers employed in the construction of the Uganda Railway.”
The location where the bridge was built is now called Man-Eater’s Camp. It is in Tsavo East National Park, Kenya, about 125 kilometres (78 mi) east of Mount Kilimanjaro and 260 kilometres (160 mi) southeast of Nairobi, at 2.993558°S 38.461458°E
Eraser is a 1996 American action thriller film directed by Chuck Russell and starring Arnold Schwarzenegger, James Caan, James Coburn, Robert Pastorelli and Vanessa L. Williams. The film follows a U.S Marshal of WITSEC who protects a senior operative testifying about an illegal arms deal and is forced to fight his former allies when one of the players is revealed to be a mole inside WITSEC.
The film was a commercial success, grossing over $242 million against a budget of $100 million. It received mixed reviews from critics, but they praised Schwarzenegger’s performance, the action sequences and the visual effects. It was released in the United States on June 21, 1996 and was nominated for an Academy Award for Best Sound Effects Editing in 1997.
3.1Development and casting
John Kruger – a top U.S. Marshal for the Witness Security Protection Program (WITSEC) – specializes in “erasing” high-profile witnesses: faking their deaths to protect them from anyone that might silence them. After erasing mob witness Johnny Casteleone, Kruger is given a new assignment by his boss, Chief Arthur Beller, to protect Lee Cullen, a senior executive at Cyrez Corporation, a defense contractor. Lee warned the FBI that top-level Cyrez executives covered up the creation of a top secret electromagnetic pulse rifle and plan to sell the weapon on the black market.
In an FBI sting operation, Lee accesses the Cyrez mainframe and downloads data on the EM rifle onto two discs: one for the FBI and one for her own protection. Vice President William Donohue, her boss, detects Lee’s intrusion and orders her into his office. After finding Lee’s hidden camera and threatening her with a pistol, Donohue commits suicide in front of her. Lee delivers the disc to the FBI but, disillusioned by their broken promise to guarantee her safety, refuses Kruger’s protection offer. The FBI’s disc is replaced with a fake by a mole working for Undersecretary of Defense Daniel Harper, the conspiracy’s mastermind.
That night, Lee’s house is attacked by a mercenary team led by J. Scar sent by Cyrez’ corrupt CEO, Morehart. Kruger rescues Lee and hides her in New York City, keeping her location secret even from WITSEC. Kruger learns from his mentor, Marshal Robert DeGuerin, that several witnesses have been murdered because a mole in WITSEC is leaking information and they must relocate their witnesses. Along with Agents Calderon and Schiff and newcomer Deputy Monroe, they raid a remote cabin and kill mercenaries holding DeGuerin’s witness hostage, but DeGuerin discreetly kills her when the mercenary leader reveals DeGuerin as the mole. Flying back to DC, Kruger, now suspicious of DeGuerin, warns Lee to relocate. DeGuerin drugs Kruger long enough to trace the warning call to NYC and kill Monroe using Kruger’s gun, framing him as the mole. Revealing he, Calderon, and Schiff are corrupt, DeGuerin explains he is the go-between for the black market buyer, and Kruger escapes from the plane to rescue Lee from DeGuerin’s mercenaries. Kruger saves Cullen from Scar at Central Park Zoo, who pursues them; Kruger releases several alligators that devour Scar. DeGuerin has Kruger and Lee branded as fugitives.
Kruger and Lee enlist Casteleone’s help and penetrate the Cyrez building. Using a mainframe backdoor in Donohue’s terminal, they decrypt Lee’s second disc. It reveals that a huge shipment of EM rifles is at the Baltimore docks and will be delivered to Russian Mafia boss Sergei Ivanovich Petrofsky, who plans to sell the weapons overseas to terrorists. A Cyrez operative pinpoints their whereabouts and remotely destroys the disc; DeGuerin kidnaps Lee and takes her to the docks as the shipment is being loaded onto Petrofsky’s Russian freighter.
Casteleone contacts his mobster cousin Tony Two-Toes and his two associates to help Kruger raid the docks. They kill Petrovsky, his henchmen, and DeGuerin’s mercenaries. In a struggle atop a shipping container, DeGuerin holds Lee hostage, but Kruger frees her and destroys the lock on the container crane, dropping DeGuerin and the container to the ground and exposing the presence of the EM rifles. Kruger rescues the critically wounded DeGuerin, leaving him to be detained by Beller and the authorities and proving his and Lee’s innocence.
Weeks later, Kruger brings Lee to a hearing for DeGuerin, Harper, and Morehart, who are indicted for treason. With little confidence that her testimony could secure their convictions, Kruger and Lee publicly fake their deaths in a car explosion. In the back of a limo, DeGuerin congratulates Harper on their deaths and says that they should go back into black-market business as soon as possible, but looks astonished when Harper says that he assumed DeGuerin had killed them. The men are confused, then shocked as their limo stops on a train track and the driver – actually Casteleone – locks the doors and exits the vehicle. Kruger calls DeGuerin and tells him, “You’ve just been erased” as they see a train heading right for them. They can’t escape before the train slams into the limo, killing all three. Kruger waves goodbye to Casteleone and walks over to Lee in a waiting car, telling her “they caught a train.”
Arnold Schwarzenegger as US Marshal John Kruger
James Caan as US Marshal Robert DeGuerin
Vanessa L. Williams as Lee Cullen
James Coburn as WITSEC Chief Arthur Beller
Robert Pastorelli as Johnny Casteleone
James Cromwell as William Donohue, Vice President of International Division at Cyrez and Cullen’s supervisor
Danny Nucci as WITSEC Deputy Monroe
Andy Romano as Undersecretary of Defense Daniel Harper
Joe Viterelli as Tony Two-Toes
Olek Krupa as Sergei Ivanovich Petrovsky
Gerry Becker as Morehart
Nick Chinlund as Agent Calderon
Michael Papajohn as Agent Schiff
K. Todd Freeman as Agent Dutton
Mark Rolston as J. Scar
John Slattery as Agent Corman
Robert Miranda as Frediano
Roma Maffia as Claire Isaacs
Tony Longo as Little Mike
John Snyder as Sal
Rick Batalla as Kevin, the Bartender
Skipp Sudduth as Watch Commander
Sven-Ole Thorsen as one of Petrofsky’s guards
Denis Forest as Cyrez’s system administrator
Patrick Kilpatrick as James Haggerty, Head of Cyrez Security
Development and casting
Director Chuck Russell and star Arnold Schwarzenegger were originally working on another project together when Eraser was brought to their attention. Russell was excited about the possibilities the film could bring between actor and the character: “I see Arnold the way a lot of people do — as a mythic, bigger-than-life character — and that’s who Kruger is. The character and the scenario are based firmly in reality, but I liked the mythic proportions of this man with a strong sense of duty, a strong sense of honor, who will literally do anything to protect a noble witness. I was excited about doing a film that had heroic proportions.” Producer Arnold Kopelson was also keen to cast Schwarzenegger in the role of “The Eraser”, having talked with the actor about working on projects before. Vanessa Williams would be cast as the lead female character, Lee Cullen, the key witness Eraser must protect. Williams came to the attention of the Kopelsons when Maria Shriver, the wife of Arnold Schwarzenegger, suggested her for the role. To play the character of DeGuerin (Kruger’s mentor and the main sociopathic antagonist), the filmmakers wanted an actor who could “convey intelligence, skill and magnetism – a more mature version of the Kruger character”, they would cast James Caan in this role. Before Caan was officially cast, Jonathan Pryce was also considered for the role. The screenplay was initially the work of Tony Puryear, who had a background in advertising and rap videos. Writers Walon Green and Michael S. Chernuchin had previously worked together on the television drama Law & Order. Extensive, uncredit rewrites were made by Frank Darabont and William Wisher Jr. (Terminator 2: Judgment Day). Additional rewrites were made by John Milius as a favor to Schwarzenegger.
The “rail-gun” featured in the film as a key plot device, Schwarzenegger talks on the subject: “We paid a lot of attention to making the audience feel the danger of this weapon, that anyone can be outside of your house, looking right through the walls. It really leaves you nowhere to hide,” he explains. “But, on top of that, we show the sophistication of the weapon in a lot of fun ways: you not only see through a building, you see a person’s skeleton and even their heart beating inside. There are some great visual effects there.”
Eraser began principal photography in New York City, locations would include The Harlem Rail Yard in the South Bronx, Central Park’s Sheep Meadow and Chinatown. Following shooting in New York production moved to Washington D.C. For the action sequence which takes place in the Reptile House of New York City Zoo, interiors were built on the soundstages of the Warner Bros. Studios in Burbank, California. The screenplay went through numerous drafts with some of the most prominent screenwriters in the business, with a great deal of uncredited script-doctoring work being done by Graham Yost and William Wisher.
One of the most demanding action sequences in the film featured the character of Kruger forced to flee from a jet speeding through the skies at 250 miles per hour. Speaking about this scene, director Russell says: “These things are jigsaw puzzle pieces not only within shooting sequence but within each shot. You had elements that were live action, elements that were miniature, sometimes computer-generated, and they’re all married together in the final processing.” Some of the physical stunts were performed by Schwarzenegger himself. For the “aerial” stunt Arnold was required to fall 65 feet in vertical descent and perform a back flip in mid-flight. The shot took seven takes to get right. In the final film, Kruger appears to drop along the length of the fuselage and past the flaming engine of the Jet thanks to inventive camera angles and special effects.
The original name of the Cyrez corporations was “Cyrex”. However, Cyrix, a microprocessor corporation and rival of Intel, protested. The name was then changed digitally in any scenes where the name appeared in a fairly costly process for the time, and dialogue redubbed. Some instances of the “Cyrex” logo are still visible in the finished film.
Eraser had an opening weekend of $24.5 million in the US during the summer season of 1996. The final US gross was $101.2 million and final worldwide gross was $242.3 million.
Based on 48 reviews collected by Rotten Tomatoes, the film has an overall approval rating from critics of 35% and an average score of 5/10.
Audiences polled by CinemaScore gave the film an average grade of “A-” on an A+ to F scale.
A more positive review came from Roger Ebert, who gave the film 3 stars out of a possible 4. He wrote that there were so many plot holes that “it helps to have a short attention span”, but that Eraser is nonetheless “actually good action fun, with spectacular stunts and special effects” and a spirited performance from Williams “running and jumping and fighting and shooting and kicking and screaming and being tied to chairs and smuggling computer discs and looking great.”
The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo (2011 film)
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
This article is about the English-language film. For the Swedish-language film based on the same novel, see The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo (2009 film).
The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo is a 2011 psychological crime thriller film based on the 2005 novel of the same name by Stieg Larsson. This film adaptation was directed by David Fincher and written by Steven Zaillian. Starring Daniel Craig as journalist Mikael Blomkvist and Rooney Mara as Lisbeth Salander, it tells the story of Blomkvist’s investigation to find out what happened to a woman from a wealthy family who disappeared 40 years prior. He recruits the help of Salander, a computer hacker.
Sony Pictures Entertainment began development on the film in 2009. It took the company a few months to obtain the rights to the novel, while recruiting Zaillian and David Fincher. The casting process for the lead roles was exhaustive and intense; Craig faced scheduling conflicts, and a number of actresses were sought for the role of Lisbeth Salander. The script took over six months to write, which included three months of analyzing the novel.
Critics gave the film favorable reviews, praising its bleak tone and lauding Craig and Mara’s performances. With a production budget of $90 million the film grossed $232.6 million worldwide. The film was chosen by National Board of Review as one of the top ten films of 2011 and was a candidate for numerous awards, winning, among others, the Academy Award for Best Film Editing, while Mara’s performance earned her an Academy Award nomination for Best Actress.
3.1Conception and writing
In Stockholm, disgraced journalist Mikael Blomkvist is recovering from the legal and professional fallout of a libel suit brought by the businessman Hans-Erik Wennerström, straining Blomkvist’s relationship with his business partner and lover, Erika Berger. Lisbeth Salander, a brilliant but antisocial investigator and hacker, compiles an extensive background check on Blomkvist for the wealthy Henrik Vanger, who offers Blomkvist evidence against Wennerström in exchange for an unusual task: to investigate the 40-year-old disappearance and presumed murder of Henrik’s grandniece, Harriet. Blomkvist agrees, and moves onto the Vanger family estate on the island of Hedestad.
Salander’s legal guardian, Holger Palmgren, suffers a stroke, and is replaced by Nils Bjurman, a sadist who controls Salander’s finances and extorts sexual favors from her. Unaware she is secretly recording their meeting, Bjurman brutally rapes her. At their next meeting, Salander incapacitates Bjurman with a stun gun, binds him to his bed, rapes him with a metallic dildo, brands him a “rapist pig” with a tattoo across his stomach, and blackmails him into securing her independence.
Blomkvist explores the island and interviews members of the Vanger family, and uncovers a notebook containing a list of names and numbers. His daughter Pernilla visits and explains the list of Bible references. In need of a skilled researcher, Blomkvist hires Salander. She uncovers a connection between the list and a series of murders of young women from 1947 to 1967, indicating a serial killer still at large. One morning, Blomkvist finds the mutilated corpse of a cat at his doorstep. Another night he is shot at and narrowly escapes; Salander tends to his wounds, and they have sex. Blomkvist begins to suspect Martin, Harriet’s brother and operational head of the Vanger empire. Salander’s research uncovers evidence that Martin and his late father, Gottfried, committed the murders.
Blomkvist breaks into Martin’s house to find more proof, but is caught by Martin and brought to his specially prepared basement. While torturing Blomkvist, Martin reveals his abusive indoctrination by his father, and brags of having killed women for decades but denies killing Harriet. As Martin prepares to kill Blomkvist, Salander arrives, forcing Martin to flee. Salander, on her motorcycle, pursues Martin in his SUV, who runs off the road and is killed when the car explodes. Salander nurses Blomkvist back to health and begins to open up to him. They deduce that Harriet is still alive; they travel to London and confront Harriet’s cousin, Anita, and realize she is Harriet herself. Harriet explains that her father and brother sexually abused her for years, and that Martin saw her kill their father in self-defense. Her cousin, Anita, smuggled her off the island and let her live under her identity in London. Finally free of her brother, she returns to Sweden and tearfully reunites with Henrik.
As promised, Henrik gives Blomkvist information against Wennerström, but it proves worthless; Salander then hacks Wennerström’s accounts, finds Blomkvist the evidence he needs and, traveling to Switzerland in disguise, steals two billion euros of secret funds. She reveals to Palmgren that she has made a friend and is happy. On her way to give Blomkvist a Christmas present, Salander sees him together with Erika. Heartbroken, Salander discards the gift and rides away.
Daniel Craig as Mikael Blomkvist:
A co-owner for Swedish lifestyle magazine Millennium, Blomkvist is devoted to exposing the corruptions and malfeasance of government, attracting infamy for his tendency to “go too far”. Craig competed with Brad Pitt, George Clooney, Viggo Mortensen, and Johnny Depp as candidates for the role. Initial concerns over schedule conflicts with the production of Cowboys & Aliens (2011) and Skyfall (2012) prompted Craig to postpone the casting process. Given the uncertainty surrounding Skyfall following Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer’s bankruptcy, Sony Pictures Entertainment and DreamWorks worked out a schedule and Craig agreed to take the part. The British actor was required to gain weight and adopted a neutral accent to befit Stockholm’s worldly cultural fabric. Having read the book amid its “initial craze”, Craig commented, “It’s one of those books you just don’t put down” […] There’s just this immediate feeling that bad things are going to happen and I think that’s part of why they’ve been so readable for people.”
Rooney Mara as Lisbeth Salander:
Salander is a computer hacker who has survived severe emotional and sexual abuse. The character was a “vulnerable victim-turned-vigilante with the “take-no-prisoners” attitude of Lara Croft and the “cool, unsentimental intellect” of Spock. Fincher felt that Salander’s eccentric persona was enthralling, and stated, “there’s a kind of wish fulfillment to her in the way that she takes care of things, the way she will only put up with so much, but there are other sides to her as well.” Casting was complicated by the raft of prominent candidates such as Natalie Portman, Ellen Page, Kristen Stewart, Emily Browning, Jennifer Lawrence, Keira Knightley, Anne Hathaway, Olivia Thirlby, Scarlett Johansson, Yolandi Visser, and Emma Watson. Despite the hype, some eventually withdrew from consideration due to the time commitment and low pay. Mara had worked with Fincher in his 2010 film The Social Network. Fincher, while fond of the actress’ youthful appearance, found it difficult at first to mold her to match Salander’s antisocial demeanor, which was a vast contrast from her earlier role as the submissive Erica. Mara went through multiple changes in her appearance to become Salander. Her hair was dyed black and cut into various jagged points, giving the appearance that she cut it herself. In addition to her transgressive appearance, which was described as a “mash-up of brazen Seventies punk and spooky Eighties goth with a dash of S&M temptress” by Lynn Hirschberg of W, Mara participated in a formal screening and was filmed by Fincher on a subway in Los Angeles in an effort to persuade the executives of Sony Pictures that she was a credible choice.
Christopher Plummer as Henrik Vanger:
Vanger is a wealthy businessman who launches an extensive investigation into his family’s affairs. Despite calling the Vanger family “dysfunctional”, Plummer said of the character: “I love the character of the old man, and I sympathize with him. He’s really the nicest old guy in the whole book. Everybody is a bit suspect, and still are at the end. Old Vanger has a nice straight line, and he gets his wish.” Plummer wanted to imbue the character with irony, an element he found to be absent from the novel’s Henrik. “I think that the old man would have it,” he opined, “because he’s a very sophisticated old guy […] used to a great deal of power. So in dealing with people, he would be very good […] he would be quite jokey, and know how to seduce them.”
Stellan Skarsgård as Martin Vanger:
Martin is the current CEO of Vanger Industries. Skarsgård was allured by the character’s dual nature, and was fascinated that he got to portray him in “two totally different ways”. In regards to Martin’s “very complex” and “complicated” personality, the Swedish actor said, “He can be extremely charming, but he also can seem to be a completely different person at different points in the film.” While consulting with Fincher, the director wanted Skarsgård to play Martin without reference to the book.
Steven Berkoff as Dirch Frode, Head Legal Counsel for Vanger Industries
Robin Wright as Erika Berger: Blomkvist’s business partner and editor-in-chief of Millennium magazine. She’s also Blomkvist’s occasional lover.
Yorick van Wageningen as Nils Bjurman:
As Salander’s legal guardian, he uses his position to sexually abuse and eventually rape her. Salander turns the tables on him, torturing him and branding him across the torso with the words I AM A RAPIST. Fincher wanted the character to be worse than a typical antagonist, although he did not want to emulate the stereotypical “mustache-twirling pervert”. The director considered Van Wageningen to be the embodiment of a versatile actor—one who was a “full-fledged human being” and a “brilliant” actor. “He was able to bring his performance from a logical place in Bjurman’s mind and find the seething morass of darkness inside,” Fincher stated. Bjurman’s multifaceted psyche was the main reason Van Wageningen wanted to play the role. The Dutch actor said, “This character goes through a lot and I wasn’t quite sure I wanted to go through all that. I started out half way between the elation of getting to work with David Fincher and the dread of this character, but I was able to use both of those things. We both thought the most interesting route would be for Bjurman to seem half affable. The challenge was not in finding the freak violence in the guy but finding the humanity of him.”
Joely Richardson as Harriet Vanger:
Henrik’s long-lost grandniece who went into hiding posing as her cousin Anita. In performing her “tricky” character, Richardson recalled that Fincher wanted her to embrace a “darker, edgier” persona, without sugarcoating, and not “resolved or healed”. “Even if you were starting to move towards the direction of resolved or healed, he still wanted it edgy and dark. There are no straightforward emotions in the world of this film.”
Goran Višnjić as Dragan Armansky, head of Milton Security, Salander’s employer
Donald Sumpter as Detective Morell
Ulf Friberg as Hans-Erik Wennerström, CEO of the Wennerström Group
Geraldine James as Cecilia Vanger
Embeth Davidtz as Annika Giannini, Mikael’s sister and a lawyer
Josefin Asplund as Pernilla Blomkvist, Mikael’s daughter
Per Myrberg as Harald Vanger
Tony Way as Plague, Salander’s hacker friend
Fredrik Dolk as Bertil Camnermarker, Counsel for the Wennerström Group
Alan Dale as Detective Isaksson
Julian Sands as Young Henrik Vanger
David Dencik as Young Morell
Gustaf Hammarsten as Young Harald
Leo Bill as Trinity, another of Salander’s hacker friends
Élodie Yung as Miriam Wu, Salander’s occasional lover
Joel Kinnaman as Christer Malm
Conception and writing
The success of Stieg Larsson’s novel created Hollywood interest in adapting the book, as became apparent in 2009, when Lynton and Pascal pursued the idea of developing an “American” version unrelated to the Swedish film adaptation released that year. By December, two major developments occurred for the project: Steven Zaillian, who had recently completed the script for Moneyball (2011), became the screenwriter, while producer Scott Rudin finalized a partnership allocating full copyrights to Sony. Zaillian, who was unfamiliar with the novel, got a copy from Rudin. The screenwriter recalled, “They sent it to me and said, ‘We want to do this. We will think of it as one thing for now. It’s possible that it can be two and three, but let’s concentrate on this one.'” After reading the book, the screenwriter did no research on the subject. Fincher, who was requested with partner Cean Chaffin by Sony executives to read the novel, was astounded by the series’ size and success. As they began to read, the duo noticed that it had a tendency to take “readers on a lot of side trips”—”from detailed explanations of surveillance techniques to angry attacks on corrupt Swedish industrialists,” professed The Hollywood Reporter’s Gregg Kilday. Fincher recalled of the encounter: “The ballistic, ripping-yarn thriller aspect of it is kind of a red herring in a weird way. It is the thing that throws Salander and Blomkvist together, but it is their relationship you keep coming back to. I was just wondering what 350 pages Zaillian would get rid of.” Because Zaillian was already cultivating the screenplay, the director avoided interfering. After a conversation, Fincher was comfortable “they were headed in the same direction”.
“I imagined someone who could move through the streets of Stockholm almost invisibly even though she looks the way she looks … it’s almost like a forcefield”
The writing process consumed approximately six months, including three months creating notes and analyzing the novel. Zaillian noted that as time progressed, the writing accelerated. “As soon as you start making decisions,” he explained, “you start cutting off all of the other possibilities of things that could happen. So with every decision that you make you are removing a whole bunch of other possibilities of where that story can go or what that character can do.” Given the book’s sizable length, Zaillian deleted elements to match Fincher’s desired running time. Even so, Zaillan took significant departures from the book. To Zaillian, there was always a “low-grade” anxiety, “but I was never doing anything specifically to please or displease,” he continued. “I was simply trying to tell the story the best way I could, and push that out of my mind. I didn’t change anything just for the sake of changing it. There’s a lot right about the book, but that part, I thought we could do it a different way, and it could be a nice surprise for the people that have read it.”
Zaillian discussed many of the themes in Larsson’s Millennium series with Fincher, taking the pair deeper into the novel’s darker subjects, such as the psychological dissimilarities between rapists and murderers. Fincher was familiar with the concept, from projects such as Seven (1995) and Zodiac (2007). Zaillian commented, “A rapist, or at least our rapist, is about exercising his power over somebody. A serial killer is about destruction; they get off on destroying something. It’s not about having power over something, it’s about eliminating it. What thrills them is slightly different.” The duo wanted to expose the novels’ pivotal themes, particularly misogyny. “We were committed to the tack that this is a movie about violence against women about specific kinds of degradation, and you can’t shy away from that. But at the same time you have to walk a razor thin line so that the audience can viscerally feel the need for revenge but also see the power of the ideas being expressed.” Instead of the typical three-act structure, they reluctantly chose a five-act structure, which Fincher pointed out is “very similar to a lot of TV cop dramas.”
Stockholm, Sweden provided for much of the setting of The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo.
Fincher and Zaillian’s central objective was to maintain the novel’s setting. To portray Larsson’s vision of Sweden, and the interaction of light on its landscape, Fincher cooperated with an artistic team that included cinematographer Jeff Cronenweth and production designer Donald Graham Burt. The film was wholly shot using Red Digital Cinema Camera Company’s RED MX digital camera, chosen to help evoke Larsson’s tone. The idea, according to Cronenweth, was to employ unorthodox light sources and maintain a realistic perspective. “So there may be shadows, there may be flaws, but it’s reality. You allow silhouettes and darkness, but at the same time we also wanted shots to counter that, so it would not all be one continuous dramatic image.” Sweden’s climate was a crucial element in enhancing the mood. Cronenweth commented, “It’s always an element in the background and it was very important that you feel it as an audience member. The winter becomes like a silent character in the film giving everything a low, cool-colored light that is super soft and non-direct.” To get acquainted with Swedish culture, Burt set out on a month-long expedition across the country. He said of the process, “It takes time to start really taking in the nuances of a culture, to start seeing the themes that recur in the architecture, the landscape, the layouts of the cities and the habits of the people. I felt I had to really integrate myself into this world to develop a true sense of place for the film. It was not just about understanding the physicality of the locations, but the metaphysics of them, and how the way people live comes out through design.”
Principal photography began in Stockholm, Sweden in September 2010. Production mostly took place at multiple locations in the city’s central business district, including at the Stockholm Court House. One challenge was realizing the Vanger estate. They picked an eighteenth-century French architecture mansion Hofsta located approximately 60 miles (97 km) southwest of Stockholm. Filmmakers wanted to use a typical “manor from Småland” that was solemn, formal, and “very Old Money”. “The Swedish are very good at the modern and the minimal but they also have these wonderful country homes that can be juxtaposed against the modern city—yet both speak to money.” Principal photography relocated in October to Uppsala. On Queen Street, the facade of the area was renovated to mimic the Hotel Alder, after an old photograph of a building obtained by Fincher. From December onward, production moved to Zurich, Switzerland, where locations were established at Dolder Grand Hotel and the Zurich Airport. Because of the “beautiful” environment of the city, Fincher found it difficult to film in the area. Principal photography concluded in Oslo, Norway, where production took place at Oslo Airport, Gardermoen. Recorded for over fifteen hours, twelve extras were sought for background roles. Filming also took place in the United Kingdom and the United States.
In one sequence the character Martin Vanger plays the song “Orinoco Flow” by Enya before beginning his torture of Mikael Blomkvist. David Fincher, the director, said that he believed that Martin “doesn’t like to kill, he doesn’t like to hear the screams, without hearing his favorite music” so therefore the character should play a song during the scene.Daniel Craig, the actor who played Blomkvist, selected “Orinoco Flow” on his iPod as a candidate song. Fincher said “And we all almost pissed ourselves, we were laughing so hard. No, actually, it’s worse than that. He said, ‘Orinoco Flow!’ Everybody looked at each other, like, what is he talking about? And he said, ‘You know, “Sail away, sail away…”’ And I thought, this guy is going to make Blomkvist as metro as we need.”
In the “Hot Hands” vignette, the rough, gnarled hands caressing Salander’s face represents all that is bad in men.
Tim Miller, creative director for the title sequence, wanted to develop an abstract narrative that reflected the pivotal moments in the novel, as well as the character development of Lisbeth Salander. It was arduous for Miller to conceptualize the sequence abstractly, given that Salander’s occupation was a distinctive part of her personality. His initial ideas were modeled after a keyboard. “We were going to treat the keyboard like this giant city with massive fingers pressing down on the keys,” Miller explained, “Then we transitioned to the liquid going through the giant obelisks of the keys.” Among Miller’s many vignettes was “The Hacker Inside”, which revealed the character’s inner disposition and melted them away. The futuristic qualities in the original designs provided for a much more cyberpunk appearance than the final product. In creating the “cyber” look for Salander, Miller said, “Every time I would show David a design he would say, ‘More Tandy!’ It’s the shitty little computers from Radio Shack, the Tandy computers. They probably had vacuum tubes in them, really old technology. And David would go ‘More Tandy’, until we ended up with something that looked like we glued a bunch of computer parts found at a junkyard together.”
Fincher wanted the vignette to be a “personal nightmare” for Salander, replaying her darkest moments. “Early on, we knew it was supposed to feel like a nightmare,” Miller professed, who commented that early on in the process, Fincher wanted to use an artwork as a template for the sequence. After browsing through various paintings to no avail, Fincher chose a painting that depicted the artist, covered in black paint, standing in the middle of a gallery. Many of Miller’s sketches contained a liquid-like component, and were rewritten to produce the “gooey” element that was so desired. “David said let’s just put liquid in all of them and it will be this primordial dream ooze that’s a part of every vignette,” Miller recalled. “It ties everything together other than the black on black.”
The title sequence includes abundant references to the novel, and exposes several political themes. Salander’s tattoos, such as her phoenix and dragon tattoos, were incorporated. The multiple flower representations signified the biological life cycle, as well as Henrik, who received a pressed flower each year on his birthday. “One had flowers coming out of this black ooze,” said Fincher, “it blossoms, and then it dies. And then a different flower, as that one is dying is rising from the middle of it. It was supposed to represent this cycle of the killer sending flowers.” Ultimately, the vignette becomes very conceptual because Miller and his team took “a whole thought, and cut it up into multiple different shots that are mixed in with other shots”. In one instance, Blomkvist is strangled by strips of newspaper, a metaphor for the establishment squelching his exposes.
In the “Hot Hands” vignette, a pair of rough, distorted hands that embrace Salander’s face and melt it represent all that’s bad in men. The hands that embrace Blomkvist’s face and shatter it, represent wealth and power. Themes of domestic violence become apparent as a woman’s face shatters after a merciless beating; this also ties in the brutal beating of Salander’s mother by her father, an event revealed in the sequel, The Girl Who Played with Fire (2006).
A cover of Led Zeppelin’s “Immigrant Song” (1970) plays throughout the title sequence. The rendition was produced by soundtrack composers Atticus Ross and Nine Inch Nailsmember Trent Reznor, and features vocals from Yeah Yeah Yeahs lead singer Karen O. Fincher suggested the song, but Reznor agreed only at his request. Led Zeppelin licensed the song only for use in the film’s trailer and title sequence. Fincher stated that he sees title sequences as an opportunity to set the stage for the film, or to get an audience to let go of its preconceptions.
Software packages that were primarily used are 3ds Max (for modeling, lighting, rendering), Softimage (for rigging and animation), Digital Fusion (for compositing), Real Flow (for fluid dynamics), Sony Vegas (for editorial), Zbrush and Mudbox (for organic modeling), and VRAY (for rendering).
Main article: The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo (soundtrack)
“[The instrumental sounds are] processed and stretched and manipulated into a setting where it may sound harmonically familiar, but if you tune into it, it’s not behaving in a way that you’re accustomed to that type of sound behaving. I find experimenting around in that is an interesting place to work.”
Fincher recruited Reznor and Ross to produce the score; aside from their successful collaboration on The Social Network, the duo had worked together on albums from Nine Inch Nails’ later discography. They dedicated much of the year to work on the film, as they felt it would appeal to a broad audience. Akin to his efforts in The Social Network, Reznor experiments with acoustics and blends them with elements of electronic music, resulting in a forbidding atmosphere. “We wanted to create the sound of coldness—emotionally and also physically,” he asserted, “We wanted to take lots of acoustic instruments […] and transplant them into a very inorganic setting, and dress the set around them with electronics.”
Even before viewing the script, Reznor and Ross opted to use a redolent approach to creating the film’s score. After discussing with Fincher the varying soundscapes and emotions, the duo spent six weeks composing. “We composed music we felt might belong,” stated the Nine Inch Nails lead vocalist, “and then we’d run it by Fincher, to see where his head’s at and he responded positively. He was filming at this time last year and assembling rough edits of scenes to see what it feels like, and he was inserting our music at that point, rather than using temp music, which is how it usually takes place, apparently.” Finding a structure for the soundtrack was arguably the most strenuous task. “We weren’t working on a finished thing, so everything keeps moving around, scenes are changing in length, and even the order of things are shuffled around, and that can get pretty frustrating when you get precious about your work. It was a lesson we learned pretty quickly of, ‘Everything is in flux, and approach it as such. Hopefully it’ll work out in the end.'”
Mara, Craig, and Fincher at the French premiere of The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo in Paris.
A screening for The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo took place on November 28, 2011, as part of a critics-only event hosted by the New York Film Critics Circle. Commentators at the event predicted that while the film would become a contender for several accolades, it would likely not become a forerunner in the pursuit for Academy Award nominations. A promotional campaign commenced thereafter, including a Lisbeth Salander-inspired collection, designed by Trish Summerville for H&M. The worldwide premiere was at the Odeon Leicester Square in London on December 12, 2011, followed by the American opening at the Ziegfeld Theatre in New York City on December 14 and Stockholm the next day. Sony’s target demographics were men and women over the age of 25 and 17–34. The film went into general release in North America on December 21, at 2,700 theaters, expanding to 2,974 theaters on its second day. The United Kingdom release was on December 26, Russia on January 1, 2012, and Japan on February 13. India and Vietnam releases were abandoned due to censorship concerns. A press statement from the Central Board of Film Certification stated: “Sony Pictures will not be releasing The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo in India. The censor board has judged the film unsuitable for public viewing in its unaltered form and, while we are committed to maintaining and protecting the vision of the director, we will, as always, respect the guidelines set by the board.” In contrast, the National Film Board of Vietnam insisted that the film’s withdrawal had no relation to rigid censorship guidelines, as it had not been reviewed by the committee.
Sony Pictures Home Entertainment released the film in a DVD and Blu-ray disc combo pack in the United States on March 20, 2012. Bonus features include a commentary from Fincher, featurettes on Blomkvist, Salander, the sets and locations, etc. The disc artwork for the DVD version of the film resembles a Sony brand DVD-R, a reference to the hacker Lisbeth Salander. This caused a bit of confusion in the marketplace with consumers thinking they had obtained a bootleg copy. The release sold 644,000 copies in its first week, in third place behind The Muppets and Hop. The following week, the film sold an additional 144,000 copies generating $2.59 million in gross revenue. As of January 2014, 1,478,230 units had been sold, grossing $22,195,069.
Fincher’s film grossed $232.6 million during its theatrical run. The film’s American release grossed $1.6 million from its Tuesday night screenings, a figure that increased to $3.5 million by the end of its first day of general release. It maintained momentum into its opening weekend, accumulating $13 million for a total of $21 million in domestic revenue.The film’s debut figures fell below media expectations. Aided by positive word of mouth, its commercial performance remained steady into the second week, posting $19 million from 2,914 theaters. The third week saw box office drop 24% to $11.3 million, totaling $76.8 million. The number of theaters slightly increased to 2,950. By the fifth week, the number of theaters shrank to 1,907, and grosses to $3.7 million, though it remained within the national top ten. The film completed its North American theatrical run on March 22, 2012, earning over $102.5 million.
The international debut was in six Scandinavian markets on December 19–25, 2011, securing $1.6 million from 480 venues. In Sweden the film opened in 194 theaters to strong results, accounting for more than half of international revenue at the time ($950,000). The first full week in the United Kingdom collected $6.7 million from 920 theaters. By the weekend of January 6–8, 2012, the film grossed $12.2 million for a total of $29 million; this included its expansion into Hong Kong, where it topped the box office, earning $470,000 from thirty-six establishments. The film similarly led the field in South Africa. It accumulated $6.6 million from an estimated 600 theaters over a seven-day period in Russia, placing fifth. The expansion continued into the following week, opening in nine markets. The week of January 13–15 saw the film yield $16.1 million from 3,910 locations in over forty-three territories, thus propelling the international gross to $49.3 million. It debuted at second place in Austria and Germany, where in the latter, it pulled $2.9 million from 525 locations. Similar results were achieved in Australia, where it reached 252 theaters. The film’s momentum continued throughout the month, and by January 22, it had hit ten additional markets, including France and Mexico, from which it drew $3.25 million from 540 venues and $1.25 million from 540 theaters, respectively. In its second week in France it descended to number three, with a total gross of $5.8 million.
The next major international release came in Japan on February 13, where it opened in first place with $3.68 million (¥288 million) in 431 theaters. By the weekend of February 17–19, the film had scooped up $119.5 million from international markets. The total international gross for The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo was $130.1 million. MGM, one of the studios involved in the production, posted a “modest loss” and declared that they had expected the film to gross at least 10% more.
Mara’s portrayal of Lisbeth Salander attracted critical acclaim from commentators.
The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo received positive reviews from critics, with particular note to the cast, tone, score and cinematography. Review aggregation website Rotten Tomatoes gives the film a rating of 86%, based on 236 reviews, with an average rating of 7.6/10. The site’s consensus states, “Brutal yet captivating, The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo is the result of David Fincher working at his lurid best with total role commitment from star Rooney Mara.” At Metacritic, which assigns a normalized score, the film received an average score of 71 out of 100, based on 41 critics, indicating “generally favorable reviews”.
David Denby of The New Yorker asserted that the austere, but captivating installment presented a “glancing, chilled view” of a world where succinct moments of loyalty coexisted with constant trials of betrayal. To USA Today columnist Claudia Puig, Fincher captures the “menace and grim despair in the frosty Scandinavian landscape” by carefully approaching its most gruesome features. Puig noted a surfeit of “stylistic flourishes” and “intriguing” changes in the narrative, compared to the original film. In his three-and-a-half star review, Chris Knight of the National Post argued that it epitomized a so-called “paradoxical position” that was both “immensely enjoyable and completely unnecessary”. Rene Rodriguez of The Miami Herald said that the “fabulously sinister entertainment” surpassed the original film “in every way”. The film took two and a half stars from Rolling Stone commentator Peter Travers, who concluded: “Fincher’s Girl is gloriously rendered but too impersonal to leave a mark.” A. O. Scott, writing for The New York Times, admired the moments of “brilliantly orchestrated” anxiety and confusion, but felt that The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo was vulnerable to the “lumbering proceduralism” that he saw in its literary counterpart, as evident with the “long stretches of drab, hackneyed exposition that flatten the atmosphere”. The Wall Street Journal’s Joe Morgenstern praised Cronenweth’s cinematography, which he thought provided for glossy alterations in the film’s darkness; “Stockholm glitters in nighttime exteriors, and its subway shines in a spectacular spasm of action involving a backpack.” Rex Reed of The New York Observer professed that despite its occasional incomprehensibility, the movie was “technically superb” and “superbly acted”. In contrast, Kyle Smith of New York Post censured the film, calling it “rubbish” and further commenting that it “demonstrates merely that masses will thrill to an unaffecting, badly written, psychologically shallow and deeply unlikely pulp story so long as you allow them to feel sanctified by the occasional meaningless reference to feminism or Nazis.”
The performances were a frequent topic in the critiques. Mara’s performance, in particular, was admired by commentators. A revelation in the eyes of Entertainment Weekly’s Owen Gleiberman, he proclaimed that her character was more important than “her ability to solve a crime”. Her “hypnotic” portrayal was noted by Justin Chang of Variety, as well as Salon critic Andrew O’Hehir, who wrote, “Rooney Mara is a revelation as Lisbeth Salander, the damaged, aggressive computer geek and feminist revenge angel, playing the character as far more feral and vulnerable than Noomi Rapace’s borderline-stereotype sexpot Goth girl.” Scott Tobias of The A.V. Club enjoyed the chemistry between Mara and Craig, as did David Germain of the Associated Press; “Mara and Craig make an indomitable screen pair, he nominally leading their intense search into decades-old serial killings, she surging ahead, plowing through obstacles with flashes of phenomenal intellect and eruptions of physical fury.” Although Puig found Mara inferior to Rapace in playing Salander, with regard to Craig’s performance, he said that the actor shone. This was supported by Morgenstern, who avouched that Craig “nonetheless finds welcome humor in Mikael’s impassive affect”. In his 2016 assessment of Craig’s career for Taste of Cinema, Eoghan Lyng ranked this portrayal as one of his best. Roger Ebert of the Chicago Sun-Times said the film was given a more assured quality than the original because of Fincher’s direction and the lead performances, although he believed this did not always work to the film’s advantage, preferring the original version’s “less confident surface” where “emotions were closer to the surface.”
In addition to numerous awards, The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo was included on several year-end lists by film commentators and publications. It was named the best film of 2011 by MTV and James Berardinelli of ReelViews. The former wrote, “The director follows up the excellent Social Network with another tour de force, injecting the murder mystery that introduces us to outcast hacker Lisbeth Salander […] and embattled journalist […] with style, intensity and relentless suspense. Mara is a revelation, and the film’s daunting 160-minute runtime breezes by thanks to one heart-racing scene after the next. Dark and tough to watch at times, but a triumph all around.” The film came second in indieWire’s list of “Drew Taylor’s Favorite Films Of 2011”, while reaching the top ten of seven other publications, including the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, San Francisco Chronicle, and the New Orleans Times-Picayune. The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo was declared one of the best films of the year by the American Film Institute, as well as the National Board of Review of Motion Pictures.
Main article: The Girl in the Spider’s Web (film)
In December 2011, Fincher stated that the creative team involved planned to film the sequels The Girl Who Played with Fire and The Girl Who Kicked the Hornets’ Nest, “back to back.” There was an announced release date of 2013 for a film version of The Girl Who Played with Fire, although by August 2012 it was delayed due to changes being being done to the script, being written by Steven Zaillian. By July 2013, Andrew Kevin Walker was hired to re-write the script. The following year, Fincher stated that a script for The Girl that Played with Fire had been written and that it was “extremely different from the book,” and that despite the long delay, he was confident that the film would be made given that the studio had “already has spent millions of dollars on the rights and the script”. Mara was less optimistic about the production of the sequels, though she stated that she was still contractually signed on to reprise the lead role.
By November 2015, it was announced that Sony was considering rebooting the franchise, before settling on continuing the film series with an adaptation of The Girl in the Spider’s Web. The story is based on a 2015 novel by David Lagercrantz that was a continuation of the original Millennium trilogy after series creator Stieg Larsson died in 2004. Looking for a new lead in the series, Alicia Vikander was considered by the studio. The following year, Fede Álvarez was announced by Sony as director, as well as co-screenwriter with Steven Knight and Jay Basu. The Girl in the Spider’s Web was notably the first adaptation of an installment in the book series to be produced into an English-language film upon its initial release. By March 2017, Álvarez announced that the film would have an entirely new cast, as he wanted the entire film to be his interpretation of the story.
In September of the same year, Claire Foy was cast as Lisbeth Salander, replacing Mara. The film released in the U.S. on November 9, 2018.
Look for Girl who Played with Fire, Girl who Kicked the Hornets Nest, Girl in the Spiders Web,
Chunhyang (2000 film)
Chunhyang (Hangul: 춘향뎐; RR: Chunhyangjeon) is a Korean Pansori film directed by Im Kwon-taek, with a screenplay by Kang Hye-yeon and Kim Myung-gon. Distributed by CJ Entertainment, the film was released on January 29, 2000 in South Korea. Lee Hyo-jeong and Cho Seung-woo played Chunhyang and Mongryong, respectively.
To date, there have been more than sixteen works based on this narrative, including three North Korean films. Im Kwon-taek’s Chunhyang presents a new interpretation of this oral tradition but it is created for a more global audience.” It is the first Chunhyang movie that lyrics of Pansori became part of the screenplay. Therefore, the contents of the Pansori reappear as scenes in the movie. The film uses the framing device of a present-day narrator who, accompanied by a drummer, sings the story of Chunhyang in front of a responsive audience. The film flashes back and forth between the singer’s presentation and scenes of Mongryong.
It was entered into the 2000 Cannes Film Festival. The film is the first Korean film which was presented at the 2000 Telluride Film Festival. At the 2000 Asia Pacific Film Festival, it won a Special Jury Award. It also won an award for Best Narrative at the Hawaii International Film Festival in 2000.
4Awards and nominations
The film is told through pansori, a traditional Korean form of storytelling that seeks to narrate through song. It is based on Chunhyangga, a traditional Korean folktale and is set in 18th century Korea.
Lee Mongryong, a governor’s son, falls in love and marries a beautiful girl Chunhyang Sung, the daughter of a courtesan. Their marriage is kept a secret from the governor who would immediately disown Lee if he found that his son married beneath him. The governor gets posted to Seoul and Mongryong is forced to leave his young wife behind, promising to come back for her when he passes the official exam.
After Mongryong leaves Namwon where Mongryong and Chunhyang first meets, new governor, Byun Hakdo, comes and wants Chunhyang for himself. When she refuses, stating that she already has a husband and will forever remain faithful to her beloved, the governor punishes her by flogging. Meanwhile, back in Seoul, Lee passes the test with the highest score and becomes an officer. Three years have passed and Lee Mongryong returns to the town on the King’s mission. There, he finds out that his wife is to be beaten to death on the governor’s birthday as a punishment for disobeying his lust. The governor, very corrupted and greedy, is arrested by Mongryong. The two lovers are finally united.
Lee Hyo-jeong – Chunhyang
Cho Seung-woo – Mongryong
Kim Sung-nyeo – Wolmae
Lee Jung-hun – Governor Byun
Kim Hak-yong – Bangja
Choi Jin-young – Governor Lee
Hong Kyung-yeun – kisaeng leader
Cho Sang-hyun – pansori singer
Kim Myung-hwan – pansori drummer
Lee Hae-ryong – Lord of Soonchun
Gok Jun-hwam – Lord of Okgwa
Yoon Keun-mo – Lord of Goksung
Lee Hye-eun – Hyangdan
According to Elvis Mitchell of The New York Times, “Instead the story is freshened through the use of a Korean singing storyteller, a pansori singer, to provide a narration, belting out the song from a stage in front of an audience. The pansori, or song, is performed under a proscenium arch to highlight the ritual elements of folk tales. Even though much of what the pansori tells us unfolds before the cameras at the same moment, the forcefulness of the performance lends another layer of feeling to the picture.”
Awards and nominations
The Assassin (2015 film)
For the British film directed by J. K. Amalou, see Assassin (2015 film).
The Assassin (Chinese: 刺客聶隱娘; pinyin: Cìkè Niè Yǐnniáng; or: The Assassin Niè Yǐnniáng) is a 2015 wuxia film directed by Taiwanese director Hou Hsiao-hsien. A Taiwan/Mainland China/Hong Kong co-production, it was an official selection in the main competition section at the 2015 Cannes Film Festival. At Cannes, Hou won the award for Best Director. It was released in Mainland and Hong Kong, China on 27 August, and a day later in Taiwan on 28 August 2015. It was selected as the Taiwanese entry for the Best Foreign Language Film at the 88th Academy Awards but it was not nominated.
The Assassin is loosely based on the late ninth-century martial arts story “Nie Yinniang” by Pei Xing, a core text in Chinese swordsmanship and wuxia fiction.
The film is set in ninth-century China during last years of the Tang Dynasty. The film centers on Nie Yinniang (played by Shu Qi), an assassin who is directed to slay corrupt government officials by her master, Jiaxin, a nun who raised her from the age of ten. When Yinniang displays mercy by failing to kill during her duties, Jiaxin punishes her with a ruthless assignment designed to test Yinniang’s resolve: she is sent to the distant province/circuit of Weibo in northern China to kill its military governor, her cousin Tian Ji’an. Eventually, Yinniang concludes that killing Tian while his sons are young would plunge Weibo into chaos and instead protects him on the journey where she was supposed to kill him. The film concludes with Yinniang leaving behind the strictures of Jiaxin and the high politics of Weibo, instead joining a young mirror-polisher on a journey as his guardian.
Shu Qi (Lin Li-Hui) as Nie Yinniang (聶隱娘), the eponymous assassin
Chang Chen as Tian Ji’an (田季安), cousin to Nie Yinniang, formerly betrothed to her, and military governor (Jiedushi), ruling Weibo Circuit.
Zhou Yun as Lady Tian, Tian Ji’an’s wife (田元氏/精精兒).
Satoshi Tsumabuki as the mirror polisher (磨鏡少年)
Ethan Juan as Xia Jing (夏靖), Tian Ji’an’s bodyguard
Hsieh Hsin-Ying as Huji (瑚姬), Tian Ji’an’s concubine and a dancer
Ni Dahong as Nie Feng (聶鋒), Nie Yinniang’s father and Tian Ji’an’s provost
Yong Mei as Nie Tian (聶田氏)
Fang-Yi Sheu as Princess Jiacheng and her twin sister, the princess Jiaxin turned Taoist nun (嘉誠公主/道姑/嘉信公主)
Lei Zhenyu as Tian Xing (田興)
Jacques Picoux as Kong Kong (空空兒)
“I haven’t shot a movie in six or seven years. It’s really a whole new world for me because the market is now so big, because of China. So the scale is much bigger, and that makes every detail different, so now even I have to adjust my scale.”
The film received several subsidies from the Taiwanese government: in 2005 of NT$15 million (US$501,000), in 2008 of NT$80 million (US$2.67 million) and in 2010 of NT$20 million (US$668,000). However, over the production, Hou encountered various budget problems; thus more than half of the film’s final budget came from China, a first for Hou. As of September 2012, its budget was CN¥90 million (US$14.9 million).
The film was filmed in several places in China, mainly in Hubei province, Inner Mongolia and north-eastern China. Hou recalled that he was “blown away” when he saw “those silver birch forests and lakes: it was like being transported into a Chinese classical painting.”
The first press conference of The Assassin since its Cannes premiere was held in Shanghai on 16 June 2015, where Hou and the film’s cast discussed their Cannes experience and their upcoming promotional activities for the film.
The film premiered in Beijing on 23 August 2015, ahead of its nationwide release on 27 August 2015. For its American release, the film’s distribution rights were acquired by independent distribution company Well Go USA Entertainment on 11 May 2015, and the film was released on 16 October 2015.
The Assassin was released on Blu-ray and DVD in Hong Kong on 20 December 2015. The North American release was 26 January 2016 and included four behind-the-scenes featurettes regarding the film.
The film earned CN¥61.385 million at the Chinese box office. Worldwide box office is around U.S. $12 million.
Shu Qi promoting the film at the 2015 Cannes Film Festival
The Assassin opened to critical acclaim. On review aggregator website Rotten Tomatoes, the film holds an 80% “Certified Fresh” rating, based on 102 reviews, with an average rating of 7.5/10. The site’s consensus states: “The Assassin’s thrilling visuals mark a fresh highlight for director Hsiao-hsien Hou, even if its glacial pace may keep some viewers at arm’s length.” Metacritic reports an 80 out of 100 rating, based on 28 critics, indicating “generally favorable reviews”. Sight & Sound magazine ranked The Assassin as the best film of 2015 based on a poll of 168 critics from around the world. The Online Film Critics Society awarded the film as the best foreign language film of 2015. It also ranked 50th in a 2016 BBC poll of the 21st century’s greatest films.
New York Times co-chief film critic Manohla Dargis called the film “staggeringly lovely” at Cannes, describing it as having “held the Wednesday-night audience in rapturous silence until the closing credits, when thunderous applause and booming bravos swept through the auditorium like a wave.” Variety’s chief film critic Justin Chang highly praises the film, saying “The sheer depth of its formal artistry places The Assassin in a rather more rarefied realm…. Hou implicitly grasps the expressive power of stillness and reserve, the ways in which silence can build tension and heighten interest. Above all, he never loses sight of the fact that the bodies he moves so fluidly and intuitively through space are human, and remain so even in death. … Hou Hsiao-hsien proves himself to be not just the creator of this assassin but an unmistakably kindred spirit.” On Film Business Asia, Derek Elley gave it a 9 out of 10, saying that “Hou Hsiao-hsien’s first wuxiamasterfully blends the genre’s essence and his own style”. Deborah Young of The Hollywood Reporter said: “Hou Hsiao-hsien brings a pure, idiosyncratic vision to the martial arts genre”. Ignatiy Vishnevetsky of The A.V. Club describes the “enigmatic and often mesmerizing” Assassin as “one of the most flat-out beautiful movies of the last decade, and also one of the most puzzling.” He states, “Mood is key here…[the film is] all muted and subsumed by a poetic atmosphere that’s radical even by Hou’s standards…It’s a movie most will be intoxicated by, but few will be able to confidently say that they understand—which may be the point, part and parcel with its conception of a world of gestures and values so absolute as to be nearly unknowable.”
John Esther of UR Chicago gave the film a more mixed review, saying “the real strength (and strain) of The Assassin is the mise-en-scène by Hou and director of photographer Mark Lee Ping Bing (In the Mood for Love; Renoir)” but criticized the film’s glossy depiction of the environment, “The costumes, the people, the woods, the art, and the interiors are relentlessly pretty. Other than human nature, The Assassin suggests there was nothing ugly to witness during this period in time.”
Sarah Cronin of the British magazine Electric Sheep writes “The intricacies of the story are bewildering, with the ‘who’ and the ‘why’ only obliquely revealed as the film lingers on. But rather than lending The Assassin an air of intrigue, these mysteries seem pointlessly and frustratingly obtuse, with the most potent symbolism left to be teased out of a broken piece of jade, while not enough is done to bring the characters to life, to make them whole. Hou Hsiao-hsien deliberately avoids giving its audience any of the pleasures of wuxia, but its take on the genre offers little, and feels like a pale shadow of fellow auteur Wong Kar Wai’s Ashes of Time. It looks gorgeous, but there’s a shallowness to its beauty. The Assassin, unfortunately, is more still life than cinema.”
Operation Chromite (film)
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Operation Chromite (Hangul: 인천상륙작전; Hanja: 仁川上陸作戰; RR: Incheon Sangryuk Jakjeon) is a 2016 South Korean wardrama film directed by John H. Lee and based on the real-life events of the Battle of Inchon, although it presents a fictionalized version of the historical CIA/US military intelligence operation “Trudy Jackson”, conducted before the actual landing operation. It was released on 27 July 2016 in South Korea.
5Awards and nominations
In 1950, just a few months after North Korean forces have overrun most of South Korea, an American-led UN coalition is deployed to Korea to aid the struggling South Koreans. General Douglas MacArthur devises a secret plan to attack behind enemy lines at the port city of Incheon. The risky strategy is opposed by leaders of the other military branches, forcing MacArthur to devise a clandestine operation to gather essential information from within occupied Incheon by coordinating a weeklong South Korean intelligence operation known as “X-Ray”.
The linchpin of this top-secret incursion, Captain Jang Hak-Soo of the South Korean navy Intelligence Unit (a former North Korean army officer who defected to South Korea after seeing his father executed in front of him by his fellow communist officers), and seven members of the X-Ray unit disguise themselves as a North Korean inspection unit and infiltrate the North Korean army command center in Incheon, coordinated by Soviet-trained Commander Lim Gye-Jin, a protégé of the North Korean leader, Kim Il-Sung. Their prime objective is to determine the placement of North Korean defenses (such as mines and artillery) and the tactical characteristics of the Incheon harbor, notorious for swift currents and major tidal surges and secure a lighthouse crucial to the landing’s success.
Immediately suspicious of Jang’s “inspection mission”, Lim attempts to impede his comrade’s investigation and orders his staff to monitor the new arrivals closely. The U.S. command relays MacArthur’s orders to obtain navigation charts showing naval mine placements in the harbor and prepare a strategy to assist the coalition forces with landing an amphibious assault in a narrow two-hour window between tides. When contacts within the South Korean military intelligence unit known as KLO (Korean Liaison Office, predecessor to current day South Korean Headquarters of Intelligence Detachment, or HID) warn Jang that time is running out to successfully complete the mission, he pushes his group to extremes. Meanwhile in Tokyo, MacArthur prepares Operation Chromite, an invasion force of 75,000 UN troops and over 200 warships to imminently depart for the Korean Peninsula. 
Lee Jung-jae as Jang Hak-soo
Lee Beom-soo as Lim Gye-jin
Liam Neeson as General Douglas MacArthur
Jin Se-yeon as Han Chae-seon
Jung Joon-ho as Seo Jin-chul
Kim Byeong-ok as Choi Suk-joong
Park Chul-min as Nam Ki-sung
Jon Gries as Hoyt Vandenberg
Gil Geum-sung as Chun Dal-joong
Shin Soo-hang as Kang Bong-po
Kim Hee-jin as Ryu Jang-choon
Jung Min-ji as Ok Gil-ryun
Naya as Yeo Ga-soo
Lee Choong-goo as Hwa-gyoon
Sung Hyuk as Song Sang-deuk
Go Yoon as commando
Jang Joon-hak as Yang Pan-dong
Sean Richard Dulake as Lt. Col. Edward L. Rowny
Justin Rupple as Alexander Haig
Jin Yong-ok as Jo In-gook
Park Jung-won as Ri Kyung-shik
Yang Bum as Ham Kwang-suk
Lee Hae-joon as Ji Jin-pyo
Josie Bissett as Jean MacArthur
Yoon Suk-jin as Do Hong-gyoo
Kim Joong-hee as Joo Hyun-pil
Yun Da-yeong as Gye Eun-sook
Kim Se-jung as Uhm Gi-soon
Park Sung-woong as Park Nam-chul (cameo)
Kim Sun-a as Kim Hwa-young (cameo)
Kim Young-ae as Na Jung-nim (cameo)
Choo Sung-hoon as Baek San (cameo)
Lee Won-jong as Kim Il-sung (cameo)
Jung Kyung-soon as Jung Sun-sil (cameo)
The film was number-one on its opening at the South Korean box office, grossing US$18.47 million. with around seven million tickets sold as of 5 December 2016. It grossed US$50 million worldwide.
It received 33% approval with an average rating of 49 percent from 18 reviews on movie review aggregator Rotten Tomatoes.
A second installment of the film, The Battle of Jangsari 9.15 set to be released in 2019. The film has already entered pre-production stage, with Megan Fox and Kim Myung-minhas confirmed joining the cast. The film will be following the a similar plot-line as its predecessor.
Awards and nominations
The Rite (2011 film)
The Rite is a 2011 supernatural horror film directed by Mikael Håfström and written by Michael Petroni. It is loosely based on Matt Baglio’s book The Rite: The Making of a Modern Exorcist, which itself is based on real events as witnessed and recounted by American then-exorcist-in-training Father Gary Thomas and his experiences from being sent to Rome to be trained and work daily with veteran clergy of the practice.
The film stars Anthony Hopkins, Colin O’Donoghue, Alice Braga, Ciarán Hinds, and Rutger Hauer. Shot in Rome, Budapest, and Blue Island, it was released on January 28, 2011 and grossed $32 million domestically.
Michael Kovak (Colin O’Donoghue) is the son of a successful funeral home owner and businessman, Istvan (Rutger Hauer). Disillusioned with his past job as a mortician, Michael decides to enter a seminary school and renounce his vows upon completion, thereby getting a free college degree. Four years have passed, and Michael is being ordained to the rank of deacon at the seminary. After his ordination, he writes a letter of resignation to his superior, Father Matthew, citing a lack of faith. Father Matthew (Toby Jones), apparently wanting to talk to Michael, attempts to catch up to him on the street. He trips as he steps over a curb, causing a cyclist to swerve into the path of an oncoming van. The young cyclist, Sandra (Marija Karan), is critically injured. Seeing Michael’s clerical garb, she asks him for absolution before her last breath. Initially hesitant, Michael is unable to refuse, comforting her and performing a blessing ritual to absolve her of her sins. Seeing how calmly Michael handled the situation, Father Matthew tells Michael that he is called to be a priest despite his resignation. He also tells Michael that with the rise in demonic possessions every year, the Church needs more exorcists and says that he has the potential to become one. Father Matthew decides to send him to the Vatican in Rome, so he can attend an exorcism class taught by his friend Father Xavier (Ciarán Hinds). Michael finally accepts after Father Matthew tells him that the Church might convert his scholarship into a student loan that would cost $100,000 if his immediate resignation stood. If Michael attends the exorcism class and still wants to resign afterwards, then they will discuss matters (hinting that he may be free to leave).
During classes, he meets a young woman, Angelina (Alice Braga), who is also taking the course. He soon learns that she is a reporter who has been asked to cover the course for an article in a newspaper. Dominican Father Xavier, realizing Michael is a skeptic and very tentative in his faith, asks Michael to see a friend of his, a renowned Welsh Jesuit exorcist named Father Lucas (Anthony Hopkins). Michael agrees and meets Father Lucas at his home, where he also meets one of the priest’s patients: a pregnant sixteen-year-old girl named Rosaria. It is later revealed that she had been raped by her father, which led to her possession. However, Michael remains skeptical, even after witnessing several preternatural events, such as the girl coughing up three long nails, acting unnaturally, and speaking English fluently. She pointedly reminds Michael of the last patient he anointed and of his loathing for his own father. He later speaks again with Angelina, who asks him to relay any information he gets from Father Lucas to her, as she has tried for an interview with him many times but has been refused. Michael declines. Meanwhile, Rosaria’s condition worsens, to the extent that she tries to drown herself, prompting Father Lucas and Michael to have her hospitalized for further care. In the hospital, Father Lucas performs another exorcism on her while Michael observes. Still in doubt Michael leaves while Father Lucas stays overnight outside the girl’s room. Late that night, she miscarries; the baby dies from cardiac arrest, and the mother from blood loss from major hemorrhaging. Disheartened, Father Lucas feels he has failed her. When Michael sees this he decides to confer with Angelina.
After the young woman’s death, Father Lucas begins behaving strangely, exhibiting signs of demonic possession, like slapping a child, looking confused, and restless. Michael and Angelina later find him sitting outside his house in the rain. Father Lucas takes them into his house and, knowing himself to be possessed, requests that Michael find Father Xavier to perform the exorcism. Angelina and Michael try desperately to contact and find Father Xavier; they learn, however, that he is out of contact for three days. Learning this, Michael decides to perform the exorcism himself, with Angelina present. After constant rebuking by the demon and a long, drawn-out fight, Michael regains his lost faith and is able to force the demon to reveal its name, Baal. He completes the exorcism, saying that he believes the demon and he believes God as well. The powerful demon leaves Father Lucas. Successful, Michael leaves Rome, returning to the United States and to his life.
The final scene of the film shows Michael, now Father Michael Kovak, entering a confessional and beginning to hear a girl’s confession.
Anthony Hopkins as Father Lucas Trevant
Colin O’Donoghue as Michael Kovak
Alice Braga as Angelina Vargas
Ciarán Hinds as Father Xavier
Rutger Hauer as Istvan Kovak
Marta Gastini as Rosaria
Maria Grazia Cucinotta as Aunt Andria
Toby Jones as Father Matthew
Chris Marquette as Eddie
Marija Karan as Sandra
Torrey DeVitto as Nina
Mikael Håfström began working on the exorcism thriller in February 2010. Håfström began casting in March for the lead roles of Father Lucas and Michael Kovak, deciding on Anthony Hopkins and Colin O’Donoghue. The film was produced by Beau Flynn and Tripp Vinson (The Exorcism of Emily Rose) under their Contrafilm Studios company.
The film is based on the book The Making of a Modern Exorcist by Rome-based Matt Baglio, which was published in 2009. To research the book, Baglio participated in a seminaron exorcism by the Vatican-sponsored Pontifical Athenaeum Regina Apostolorum where he met Father Gary Thomas, a parish priest from Sacred Heart Church in Saratoga, California, who was tasked by the local bishop in San Jose, California to become an exorcist for the diocese. Initially skeptical and reluctant, Father Gary becomes an “apprentice” to a Rome-based exorcist and his skepticism is soon replaced by the cold reality of evil and the ways it sometimes takes the form of demonic possession. The book traces Father Gary’s life prior to and subsequent to their acquaintance in 2005 which involved Baglio observing over twenty exorcisms performed by Father Gary. Baglio indicates that the experience in writing the book “was just a very spiritual process and in a lot of ways, it helped me reconnect to the Church and understand the value of faith. This isn’t something that is silly and prayer, it’s very important.”
While Baglio was still researching his book, producers Tripp Vinson and Beau Flynn (who had already produced The Exorcism of Emily Rose) learned about Baglio’s book proposal and decided to purchase the movie rights. The producers contacted Michael Petroni (who was one of the writers for The Chronicles of Narnia: The Voyage of the Dawn Treader) to write the screenplay. Petroni, a practicing Catholic, coordinated the development of his screenplay with Baglio, who was now writing the book at about the same time.
Director Håfström was invited to direct the film “intrigued by the fact that he would be working from facts, not just someone’s imagination.” While the film is focused on demonic possession and exorcism, Håfström also believes that “this story is about a young man finding himself and finding his way.” In preparation for the film, Håfström attended some exorcisms in Rome although never being present in the actual room, he could hear what was taking place. Father Gary Thomas served as a consultant on the set of “The Rite” and indicated that the exorcisms in the film were “very accurate” with some “expected licenses” taken.
Further information: Exorcism in Christianity
Warner Bros. released the film on January 28, 2011.
The film was generally well received within the Catholic community although questioning its classification as “horror”. The United States Conference of Catholic Bishops noted: “Though shaky on a few details, director Mikael Håfström’s conversion tale resoundingly affirms faith and the value of priestly ministry. Yet the effort to showcase the main character’s spiritual journey as an old-fashioned chillfest weakens its ultimate impact.”
It received negative reviews from mainstream critics, where it has a 21% rating on Rotten Tomatoes based on 158 reviews stating that while “Anthony Hopkins is as excellent as ever, but he is no match for The Rite’s dawdling pace and lack of chills, as well as Colin O’Donoghue’s tentative performance in the leading role.”
Roger Ebert of the Chicago Sun-Times gave the film 3 out of 4 stars and said, “I admire The Rite because while it delivers what I suppose should be called horror, it is atmospheric, its cinematography is eerie and evocative, and the actors enrich it.”
First Men in the Moon (1964 film)
See also: Le voyage dans la lune, The First Men in the Moon (1919 film), and The First Men in the Moon (2010 film)
First Men in the Moon is a 1964 British Technicolor science fiction film produced by Charles H. Schneer, directed by Nathan Juran, starring Edward Judd, Martha Hyer and Lionel Jeffries. It is an adaptation by science fiction scriptwriter Nigel Kneale of H. G. Wells’ 1901 novel The First Men in the Moon. Ray Harryhausen provided the stop-motion animation effects, which include the Selenites, giant caterpillar-like “Moon Cows”, and the big-brained Prime Lunar.
5Comic book adaptation
In 1964, the United Nations (UN) has launched a rocket flight to the Moon. A multi-national group of astronauts in the UN spacecraft land on the Moon, believing themselves to be the first lunar explorers. However, they discover a Union Jack flag on the surface and a note mentioning Katherine Callender, which claims the Moon for Queen Victoria. Attempting to trace Callender, UN authorities find she has died but that her husband Arnold Bedford is still living, and resides in an old people’s home. The nursing home staff do not let him watch television reports of the expedition because, according to the matron, it “excites him”, and dismiss his claims to have been on the Moon as an insane delusion. The UN representatives question him about the Moon and he tells them his story. The rest of the film, as a flashback, shows what Bedford and Professor Cavor did in the 1890s.
In 1899, Arnold Bedford and his fiancée Katherine Callender – known as Kate – meet an inventor, Joseph Cavor, who has invented Cavorite, a substance that will let anything it is applied to or made of deflect the force of gravity and which he plans to use to travel to the Moon. Cavor has already built a spherical spaceship for this purpose, taking Arnold and (accidentally) Kate with him. While exploring the Moon, Bedford and Cavor fall down a vertical shaft and discover to their amazement an insectoid population, the Selenites, living beneath the surface. (Cavor coins this name for the creatures after the Greek goddess of the moon, Selene). Bedford attacks a group of Selenites in fear — killing several, despite Cavor’s horrified protests. After escaping from the Selenites back to the surface, they discover that their ship, still containing Kate (who stayed behind because Cavor had brought only two spacesuits), has been dragged into their underground city.
The two, following the drag trail, find and enter the city. The city holds a breathable atmosphere, so they remove and leave their spacesuit helmets. Upon finding the living quarters, they are attacked by a giant caterpillar-like “moon bull” which pursues them until the Selenites find out and are able to kill it with their tesla coil-like electrical stun ray gun. Cavor and Bedford see the city’s power station, powered by sunlight. In the end, they reach their ship underground. The Selenites quickly learn English and interrogate Cavor, who believes they wish to exchange scientific knowledge; this also leads up to Cavor having a discussion with the “Grand Lunar”, the ruling entity of the Selenites. Bedford, however, upon entering the chamber just as the Grand Lunar voices his concerns over human aggressiveness, makes the assumption that Cavor, and presumably all humanity, is on trial, attempts to kill the Grand Lunar with an elephant gun — failing due to Cavor’s attempts to stop him. Running for their lives, Bedford manages to find the sphere and escape, but Cavor stays voluntarily on the Moon.
Bedford, along with Kate, flies the ship up a vertical shaft, shattering the window cover at the top, and back to Earth. The aged Bedford concludes his story by mentioning that the ship came down in the sea off Zanzibar, and sank, but he and Kate managed to swim ashore. Cavor’s ultimate fate remained unknown.
Back in the present day, Bedford, the UN party and newspaper reporters watch on television the latest events on the Moon, where the UN astronauts have broken into the Selenite city and find it deserted and decaying. Moments later, the ruined city starts to crumble and collapse, forcing the landing crew to retreat hastily, and seconds later the city — and all of its history — is completely destroyed. Bedford realizes that the Selenites must have been killed off by Cavor’s common cold viruses to which they had no immunity.
The 1890s expedition claim the Moon for Queen Victoria
The 1960s astronauts find Cavor’s party’s flag
Edward Judd as Bedford
Martha Hyer as Kate
Lionel Jeffries as Cavor
Miles Malleson as Dymchurch registrar
Norman Bird as Stuart
Gladys Henson as nursing home matron
Hugh McDermott as Richard Challis, UN Space Agency
Betty McDowall as Margaret Hoy, UN Space Agency
Huw Thomas* as announcer
Erik Chitty* as Gibbs
Peter Finch* as bailiff’s man
Marne Maitland* as Dr. Tok, UN Space Agency
* Not credited on-screen.
See also: Spacesuits in fiction
Two types of space suits are featured. During the main events of the story, which take place in the 1890s, the film’s Victorian-era astronauts are outfitted in standard diving dresses (each fitted with a 1960s-type aqualung cylinder worn as a backpack), as spacesuits. Their suits are neither pressurised nor heated or cooled, and they do not wear protective gloves despite the vacuum of space and extreme cold and heat of the lunar surface. There are other technical issues confronting the Victorian explorerers: even with heating and cooling provided, using rubber-lined diving suits on the Moon is impractical. Even before the space age began, the 1948 science fiction short story, “Gentlemen, Be Seated!” by Robert A. Heinlein, deftly describes the brittleness of rubber once it is exposed to the vacuum of space.
Cavor and Bedford have no radio and must make their helmets touch each other to talk in the vacuum (although the filmmakers violate this rule several times). It is not clear whether the Selenites have radio. The history of radio was only just starting when the 1890s events were set. Wireless communication from Cavor in the Moon appears in H. G. Wells’s novel.
The spacesuit worn by the UN Astronauts is actually the Windak high-altitude pressure suit, developed for the Royal Air Force (here each fitted with a 1960s-type aqualung cylinder worn backpack). These pressure suits would also be used in two Doctor Who stories: William Hartnell’s final story “The Tenth Planet” and the Patrick Troughton-era “The Wheel in Space”. They also appear in the original Star Wars trilogy as the costumes for Bossk and Bo Shek.
Among contemporary reviews, Variety wrote, “Ray Harryhausen and his special effects men have another high old time in this piece of science-fiction hokum filmed in Dynamation,” adding that “Wells’ novel and has been neatly updated,” and concluding that “The three principals play second fiddle to the special effects and art work, which are impressive in color, construction and animation”; however, The New York Times wrote, “Only the most indulgent youngsters should derive much stimulation – let alone fun – from the tedious, heavyhanded science-fiction vehicle that arrived yesterday from England”; but more recently, TV Guide called it “An enjoyable science fiction film.” and Blu-ray.com highly recommended “a fun and exciting viewing experience.”
Curse of the Golden Flower
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For the Jay Chou extended play album, see Curse of the Golden Flower (EP).
Movie Review: Indie Sci-Fi Thriller ‘Alien Code’ Talky but Engaging
MOVIE REVIEWS, ★★½
In the opening scene of the new indie thriller Alien Code, Kyle Gallner’s Alex walks into his suburban home to find an unsettling sight: a dead body on his living room floor.
But Alex is even more disturbed when he flips over the body to find… (queue Twilight Zone music)… yes, himself dead on the floor in front of him. He’s holding a note that says ‘watch me’ and an envelope with a flash drive containing a recorded message.
That startling sequence, which unfolds over Alien Code’s opening credits, immediately hooks us in and creates a lot of good will: piecing together exactly what is going on here accounts for most of the interest in the early scenes of Alien Code.
In the video on the USB, a gaunt-looking Alex who claims to be from the future is sending the past version of himself a message. He narrates the film we are about to watch, which begins with a knock at the door and a surprising job offer.
It’s from the mysterious Rebecca (Mary McCormack), who claims to be working with a NSA-supported organization called ARIST and arrives at Alex’s door with a pair of MiB heavies. She needs the help of Alex – an expert cryptographer down on his luck – to work on a project she can’t give any details about until he signs a non-disclosure agreement.
Alex is incredulous but intrigued – especially with the $50,000 immediately transferred into his account just for signing the NDA. Soon he’s sedated and driven to a remote facility, where he wakes up the lone decoder on a top-secret project.
The project: a satellite retrieved from orbit and purportedly sent… from the future! It contains a message than cannot be decoded, which is where Alex comes in. And for the next five weeks, he works on it in isolation.
We’re merely twenty minutes through Alien Code, and things only get nuttier from there at a fever dream-like pitch: mysterious blueprints, brain tumors, and visions of strange, featureless Slenderman-like creatures, including a giant that visits Alex by his bedroom window.
This is fun for awhile, but Alien Code can’t quite sustain itself during a second half that sags under the weight of exposition and a script that tries to explain itself out of a rich sci-fi scenario. Alex eventually meets up with prior decoders Beth (Azura Skye) and later Miles Driscoll (Richard Schiff), who both suffer from the same hallucinations. But are they really hallucinations? Or visitors from another dimension?
The answers to these questions lay not in on-screen action, but in mounds of dialogue and lengthy exposition that explains this world and events not unlike the much-derided climactic scenes of The Matrix Reloaded.
For a low budget indie production, however, Alien Code deserves a lot of credit. Interest wanes as more and more gets explained, but for a good while this is an intriguing ride that keeps you glued to the screen to figure out the intricate puzzle that lies at the heart of the movie. Only in climactic scenes do budget constraints become apparent; sets and costumes could have used an upgrade in an otherworldly finale.
Written and directed by Michael G. Cooney (though the on-screen director is credited as Sam Havenhurst), Alien Code isn’t quite Primer but it is fun and diverting and even has a nice sense of humor about itself. Gallner, alone on the screen for much of the movie, is especially impressive as the progressively freaked-out protagonist.
Michael G. Cooney, Kyle Gallner, Mary McCormack, Azura Skye, Richard Schiff, Aaron Behr, Graham Hamilton, Noah .
Point B (II) (2013)
Full Cast & Crew
Writing Credits (in alphabetical order)
Cast (in credits order)
Film Editing by
Production Design by
Art Direction by
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
Visual Effects by
Camera and Electrical Department
Freddie Hutton-Mills, Bart Ruspoli
Freddie Hutton-Mills, Bart Ruspoli
Olivia Grant, Chiké Okonkwo, John Hannah | See full cast & crew
Freddie Hutton-Mills, Bart Ruspoli
Freddie Hutton-Mills, Bart Ruspoli
Olivia Grant, Chiké Okonkwo, John Hannah | See full cast & crew
In a post-apocalyptic society, living underground as protection from pollution, the main concern is getting enough food and finding other survivors. A pollution-resistant android with A.I. is developed to help obtain this.
‘Genesis’ is the third feature from British writing and directing duo Bart Ruspoli & Freddie Hutton-Mills. The first in a sci-fi trilogy, ‘Genesis’ explores the nature of free will and what it means to be human, against a post apocalyptic backdrop where the remnants of mankind attempt to create A.I. to save them from extinction. The film stars John Hannah (The Mummy trilogy, Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D), Olivia Grant (Stardust, Indian Summers), Warren Brown (Strike Back, Luther) and Chike Okonkwo (The Birth of a Nation, Being Mary Jane).
Shada (Doctor Who)
This article is about the Doctor Who serial. For the United States Navy ship, see USS Shada (SP-580). For the Arabic emphasis sign, see Shadda. For the village in Azerbaijan, see Şada.
Shada is an unaired serial of the British science fiction television series Doctor Who. It was intended as the final serial of the 1979–80 season (season 17) but was never completed, owing to strike action at the BBC during filming.
The BBC released a completed version of Shada in 2017, with missing dialogue newly recorded by the original cast, using the same audio equipment employed in the initial shoot, and animated by the team that undertook the animated version of the 1966 serial The Power of the Daleks.
Previous attempts to present the story include a narrated reconstruction for BBC Video; a re-imagined audio play by Big Finish Productions, also offered with basic Flash imagery on BBCi and the BBC Doctor Who website; and a novelisation by Gareth Roberts, based on the latest shooting scripts, with the author’s own additions.
3.11992 VHS reconstruction
3.22017 animated restoration
4.1Big Finish audio play and web animation (2003)
4.2Ian Levine animated version (2011)
4.3Novelisation and audio book (2012)
The Doctor answers a distress signal from Professor Chronotis, a Time Lord posing as a professor at St. Cedd’s College, Cambridgewho loaned a Gallifreyan tome to his student Chris Parsons. The Doctor retrieves the book while Chronotis dies after his mind was extracted by the sphere of a mad scientist named Skagra, living long enough to warn Romana, Parsons, and K9 of them and Shada. The Doctor locates Skagra’s cloaked spacecraft, only for his companions to be captured while Skagra has his sphere extract the Doctor’s mind to decode the book before taking Romana in the TARDIS to his carrier ship and Krarg creations. But the Doctor survived his ordeal with his mind intact and has ship’s computer release Chris and K9 and take them to a space station Skagra previously occupied. The group find Skagra’s discarded colleagues and learn he is after a Time Lord named Salyavin.
Back on Earth, Clare Keightley accidentally revives Chronotis whose chambers are revealed as a TARDIS, the Professor explaining the book is a key to the prison planet Shada where Salyavin is held. Chronotis and Clare repair the TARDIS to reach Skagra’s carrier, saving the Doctor and Chris after Skagra decoded the book and reveals his intent to absorb Salyavin’s mind and use its telepathy to unite all life into a single Universal Mind. The group reach Shada as Skagra releases the prisoners, Chronotis revealed as Salyavin with Skagra extracting his mind and turning the prisoners and Chris into his thralls. Reminded that the Universal Mind contains a copy of his brain, the Doctor builds a telepathy helmet to wrestle control from Skagra while the Krarg are destroyed. Skagra ends up a prisoner in his own ship while the Doctor returns the restored prisoners to Shada and parts ways with Chronotis, musing over Chronotis’ exploits being exaggerated while expecting a similar treatment within two centuries.
Originally, writer Douglas Adams presented a wholly different idea for the season’s six-part finale, involving the Doctor’s retirement from adventuring. Facing resistance from producer Graham Williams, Adams chose to avoid work on a replacement, under the expectation that time pressures would eventually force the producer’s hand and allow his idea to be used. Ultimately, however, Williams forced Adams to conceive a new story as a last-minute replacement, which became Shada.
Under its original remit, Graham Williams intended the story as a discussion about the death penalty, specifically how a civilisation like the Time Lords would deal with the issue, and treat its prisoners.
As composed by Adams, the story was scheduled to span six 25-minute episodes. Location filming in Cambridge and the first of three studio sessions at BBC Television Centre were completed as scheduled; however, when the scheduled second studio block was due to start, it fell foul of a long-running technicians’ dispute at the BBC. The strike was over by the onset of rehearsals for the third recording session, but ultimately the studio time was redirected to other higher-priority Christmas programming, leaving the serial incomplete.
Following the departure of Graham Williams from the producer role, attempts were made by new producer John Nathan-Turner to remount the story; for various reasons, however, this never transpired. Consequently, in June 1980, the production was formally dropped. It is estimated that only 50% of the story was filmed.
After the production halt, Adams expressed a low opinion of the script and was content to let it remain obscure, turning down offers to adapt the story in various forms. He once claimed that when he had signed the contract allowing the script’s 1992 release (accompanying the serial’s VHS reconstruction), it had been amongst a pile of papers sent over by his agent, and that he was unaware of what he was agreeing to.
In 1983, clips from Shada were used in The Five Doctors, the 20th-anniversary special. Tom Baker, the fourth actor to play the Doctor, had declined to appear in the special, and the plot was reworked to explain the events in the clips.
Denis Carey was subsequently cast as the eponymous Keeper in Tom Baker’s penultimate story, The Keeper of Traken (1981), and also appeared as the Borad’s avatar in Timelash(1985).
1992 VHS reconstruction
A decade after the serial’s abandonment, John Nathan-Turner set out to complete the story in a fashion, by commissioning new effects shots and a score, and having Tom Baker record linking material to cover the missing scenes. The resulting shortened episodes (of between 14 and 22 minutes each) received a 111-minute VHS release in 1992. In its UK edition, the VHS was accompanied by a facsimile of a version of Douglas Adams’s script. The release was discontinued in the UK in 1996.
This VHS reconstruction, the 2003 BBCi/Big Finish adaptation and the 1994 documentary More Than Thirty Years in the TARDIS,, were re-released together on DVD on 7 January 2013, as The Legacy Collection (UK) or simply Shada (North America).
2017 animated restoration
On 24 November 2017, an effort to complete the serial officially, using newly recorded dialogue from the original cast (using the serial’s original recording engineer and audio equipment), and new animated footage to complete the missing segments, was released as a digital download; DVD and Blu-ray releases followed on 4 December 2017 in Region 2. The new sequences were animated by the same team that undertook the 2016 animated edition of the 1966 serial The Power of the Daleks, including director Charles Norton, with lead character art by Martin Geraghty, character shading by Adrian Salmon, props by Mike Collins, and background art by Daryl Joyce.
A 2-disc region 1 DVD release was originally set to be made available on 9 January 2018; this was later postponed in the U.S. and Canada to 4 September 2018. The serial was released on 10 January 2018 in Region 4.
This version received its U.S. broadcast debut 19 July 2018, on BBC America, with guide data giving the episode title as “The Lost Episode” rather than “Shada”.
Big Finish audio play and web animation (2003)
In 2003, the BBC commissioned Big Finish Productions to remake Shada as an audio play which was then webcast in six episodic segments, accompanied by limited Flash animation, on the BBC website using illustrations provided by comic strip artist Lee Sullivan. The play starred Paul McGann as the Eighth Doctor and Lalla Ward as Romana. The audio play was also broadcast on digital radio station BBC7, on 10 December 2005 (as a 21⁄2-hour omnibus), and was repeated in six parts as the opening story to the Eighth Doctor’s summer season, which began on 16 July 2006.
The webcast version (originally broadcast via BBCi’s “Red Button”) remains available from the BBC Doctor Who “classic series” website, and an expanded audio-only version is available for purchase on CD from Big Finish. This expanded version was the one broadcast on BBC7.
Tom Baker was originally approached to reprise the role of the Doctor, but declined. The Eighth Doctor was then substituted and the story reworked accordingly.
Portions of the Big Finish version were reworked by Gary Russell to make the story fit into Doctor Who continuity. This included a new introduction, and a new explanation for the Fourth Doctor and Romana being “taken out of time” during the events of The Five Doctors; the Eighth Doctor has come to collect Romana and K9 because he has begun to have a feeling that there was something they should have done at that time.
When Skagra is investigating the Doctor, clips from three other Big Finish productions can be heard, exclusively on the CD version – The Fires of Vulcan, The Marian Conspiracy and Phantasmagoria. The original serial was to have used clips from The Pirate Planet(1978), The Power of Kroll (1978–79), The Creature from the Pit (1979), The Androids of Tara (1978), Destiny of the Daleks (1979), and City of Death (1979).
In Episode 2 of the webcast version, when Chris is in his lab showing Clare the book, a vending machine-like object in the background is labelled “Nutrimat”, a reference to a similar device in Adams’ The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy. Two other references are a sequence where Skagra steals a Ford Prefect and when images of Hitchhiker’s Guide characters appear as inmates on Shada itself.
Ian Levine animated version (2011)
In 2010, Ian Levine funded an unofficial project to complete the original Shada story using animation and the original voice actors, minus Tom Baker and David Brierley, to complete the parts of the story that were never filmed. John Leeson would replace Brierley as the voice of K9, and Paul Jones (better known as a studio carpenter) would replace Tom Baker as the Doctor. The completed story was finished in late 2011 and announced by Levine, via his Twitter account, on 8 September 2011. J. R. Southall, writer for the science fiction magazine Starburst, reviewed Levine’s completed version and scored it 10 out of 10 in an article published on 15 September 2011. The completed Levine version appeared on torrent sites over two years later, on 12 October 2013.
Novelisation and audio book (2012)
Elements of the story were reused by Douglas Adams for his novel Dirk Gently’s Holistic Detective Agency, in particular the character of Professor Chronotis who possesses a time machine. Adams did not allow Shada, or any of his other Doctor Who stories, to be novelised by Target Books. It is, therefore, one of only five serials from the 1963–1989 series not to be novelised by Target – along with Adams’ other stories The Pirate Planet and City of Death, plus Eric Saward’s two Dalek stories (Resurrection of the Daleks and Revelation of the Daleks).
A six-part adaptation of the story by Jonathan V Way appeared in issues 13–18 of Cosmic Masque, the Doctor Who Appreciation Society’s fiction magazine. Adams granted permission for the adaptation on condition that it was never published in collected form.
BBC Books published a novelisation of this serial on 15 March 2012, written by Gareth Roberts. Roberts drew on the latest versions of the scripts available, as well as adding new material of his own to “fix” various plotholes and unanswered questions. Nicholas Pegg, in his review of the book for Doctor Who Magazine heartily praised it, calling it a “successful duet”.
Lalla Ward delivered an 11hr 30min unabridged reading of the Gareth Roberts novelisation for AudioGo; joining her, voicing K9, was John Leeson. The audio recording was released on 15 March 2012, and is available for download or on 10 CDs (CD ISBN 978-1-4458-6763-2, Download ISBN 9781445867656). Vanessa Bishop reviewed it favourably for Doctor Who Magazine, singling out Simon E Power’s sound design for special praise.
Paul Cornell, Martin Day, and Keith Topping gave the serial (at the time in the form of the 1992 VHS reconstruction) a mixed review in The Discontinuity Guide (1995), saying;
Patrick Mulkern reviewed the 2017 partially reconstructed version for Radio Times. Mulkern thought that despite “pockets of magic to enjoy” it was a “sprawling but far-from-epic serial.” The humour was repetitive and fell flat and the action pedestrian. Mulkern recommended Gareth Roberts’ novelisation as a superior alternative.
Glass (2019 film)
Glass is a 2019 American superhero thriller film written, produced, and directed by M. Night Shyamalan. The film is a sequel to Shyamalan’s previous films Unbreakable (2000) and Split (2016), cumulatively forming the Eastrail 177 Trilogy. Bruce Willis, Samuel L. Jackson, Spencer Treat Clark, and Charlayne Woodard reprise their Unbreakable roles, while James McAvoy and Anya Taylor-Joyreturn as their Split characters, with Sarah Paulson, Adam David Thompson, and Luke Kirby joining the cast. In the film, David Dunngets locked in a mental hospital alongside his once-rival Mr. Glass, as well as the multi-personality “The Horde,” and must escape from a psychiatrist who is out to prove the trio do not actually possess super-human abilities.
While there was interest in creating a sequel to Unbreakable following its release, Touchstone Pictures opted not to finance one at that time despite the film’s solid box office performance. Shyamalan set out to write Split using a character he had written for Unbreakablebut pulled from the script due to balance issues. Shyamalan realized the opportunity he had to create a trilogy of works, and adapted the ending of Split to establish the film as within the Unbreakable narrative. This included securing the rights to use Willis’s Unbreakable character from Walt Disney Studios, with the promise of including them within the production and distribution of this third film alongside Universal Pictures, should it be made. Split was a financial and critical success, and by April 2017, Shyamalan announced that he had started the production process for Glass.
The film was released on January 18, 2019, by Universal Pictures in the United States and by Buena Vista International in international territories. The film received mixed reviews from critics, with some finding it underwhelming and lamenting the climax, although the performances and the entertainment value of the first half were praised.
Three weeks after the events of Split, David Dunn, working with his now-adult son Joseph, is using his superhuman abilities to protect people from criminals under a new alias known as “The Overseer”. David learns from Joseph that Kevin Wendell Crumb, who suffers from dissociative identity disorder which provides his moniker “The Horde”, has a group of cheerleaders held hostage in a warehouse. David goes to free them but encounters one of Kevin’s personalities known as “The Beast,” and the ensuing fight spills out into the streets, leading to the eventual capture of both David and Kevin by the authorities. The two are sent to a mental institution where Elijah Price, David’s sworn enemy known as “Mr. Glass”, is being held.
Dr. Ellie Staple, the head doctor of the mental institution, works with patients who claim to have special powers. In order to have them suppress those thoughts, Staple tries to persuade them that there is no such thing as superhuman powers and that they actually have mental illness. Meanwhile, Elijah is secretly working with Kevin to unleash “The Beast” and expose the world to the existence of superheroes. With the help of “The Beast,” Elijah escapes but he is soon pursued by David, who again battles Kevin on the institution’s grounds.
Staple arrives with armed men and explains that she has spent the majority of her career preventing superheroes from exposing themselves to the world and it turns out both Ellie and the armed men are part of a secret anti-superhuman society. The men capture David and kill him by drowning him in a pothole, while Kevin kills Elijah after he learns that Elijah orchestrated the train crash that killed his father, the same train wreck that Elijah caused to find David. After his father died, his abusive mother began torturing him, thus leading to the creation of Kevin’s multiple personalities. Eventually, Kevin is also killed by Staple’s men after Casey Cooke, a former hostage of his, puts Kevin himself back to the light, destroying the Horde and making him vulnerable to gunfire.
Unbeknownst to Staple, the cameras around the mental institution had previously been hacked by Elijah, and the footage is released to the world, exposing the existence of those with superhuman abilities. Staple is shocked and furious that the public is now aware of superheroes and villains, which she fought to hide, and her plans and those of the secret society are destroyed.
Meanwhile, while overseeing Philadelphia, Mrs. Price tells Joseph and Casey that it is “the beginning of a universe” as people and possibly other “superhumans” now know of their co-existence.
James McAvoy as Kevin Wendell Crumb / The Horde: A former Philadelphia Zoo employee with 23 different personalities whose body chemistry changes with each personality, resulting in a 24th personality known as “The Beast.” Kevin’s personalities include Jade (a foul-mouthed teenage girl), Orwell (an introverted man), Barry (the original dominant personality), Patricia (an orderly, sophisticated woman), Hedwig (a nine-year-old boy), Mary Reynolds (a spoiled English girl), Dennis (a perverted man with OCD), Norma, B.T. (a hyperactive surfer), Mr. Pritchard (a posh-talking man), Jelin, and Samuel (a Spanish-speaking individual).
Bruce Willis as David Dunn / The Overseer: A security guard with superhuman strength, stamina, and invulnerability as well as an extrasensory ability to see the crimes people have committed by touching them. In the film, Dunn goes by a new alias named “The Overseer.”
Samuel L. Jackson as Elijah Price / Mr. Glass: A highly intelligent mass murderer and comic book theorist with Type I osteogenesis imperfecta who was institutionalized after Dunn discovered the extent of his crimes.
Sarah Paulson as Dr. Ellie Staple: A psychiatrist specializing in delusions of grandeur who treats patients convinced they are superhuman beings.
Anya Taylor-Joy as Casey Cooke: A teenage girl with a history of self-harm who was kidnapped by one of Kevin’s personalities as a potential sacrifice to “The Beast” but managed to survive.
Spencer Treat Clark as Joseph Dunn: David’s son who has believed in his father’s abilities since he was a child and sees him as a real-life superhero.
Charlayne Woodard as Mrs. Price: Elijah’s mother who took great care of her son and always told him he was special no matter what others said.
Adam David Thompson as Daryl, an employee at the psych ward.
Luke Kirby as Pierce, one of Mr. Glass’ caretakers at the facility.
M. Night Shyamalan reprises his cameo role of Jai, the security guard from Dr. Fletcher’s apartment building in Split who hints to David Dunn that he was the same man he confronted about selling drugs at the university stadium in Unbreakable.
After Unbreakable’s release in 2000, rumors of possible sequels began circulating in different interviews and in film fansites. In 2000, Bruce Willis was quoted as hoping for an Unbreakable trilogy. In December 2000, director/writer M. Night Shyamalan denied rumors he wrote Unbreakable as the first installment of a trilogy, saying he was not even thinking about it. In August 2001, Shyamalan stated that, because of successful DVD sales, he had approached Touchstone Pictures about an Unbreakable sequel, an idea Shyamalan said the studio originally turned down because of the film’s disappointing box office performance. In a September 2008 article, Shyamalan and Samuel L. Jackson said there was some discussion of a sequel when the film was being made, but that it mostly died with the disappointing box office. Jackson said he was still interested in a sequel but Shyamalan was non-committal. In February 2010, Willis said that Shyamalan was “still thinking about doing the fight movie between me and Sam that we were going to do”, and stated that as long as Jackson was able to participate he would be “up for it.”
Shyamalan continued to work on other films following Unbreakable, and in 2016 he released Split. Split’s principal antagonist is Kevin Wendell Crumb, played by James McAvoy, a person suffering from dissociative identity disorder which affects his body chemistry, adapting the mannerisms of each of the separate personas. One of these personalities is “The Beast,” which causes Crumb’s body to transform into a feral superhuman state, with the desire to consume those that have not had a traumatic situation in their lives – those it does not consider “broken.” Crumb had been written in the script for Unbreakable, but Shyamalan felt there were balancing issues with his inclusion, and removed him from the story; Splitwas effectively rewritten from some of the scenes he had planned for Crumb expanded out into a standalone picture.
The final scene for Split includes the appearance of David Dunn, played by Willis. Shyamalan included Dunn here to connect Split to Unbreakable, with Dunn on learning about the escape of “The Beast,” realizing that there are other superhumans in the world, as predicted by Mr. Glass (Jackson). By including this scene, he realized there may be a possibility of completing a trilogy of films. Shyamalan stated “I hope [a third Unbreakable film happens]. The answer is yes. I’m just such a wimp sometimes. I don’t know what’s going to happen when I go off in my room, a week after this film opens, to write the script. But I’m going to start writing. [I have] a really robust outline, which is pretty intricate. But now the standards for my outlines are higher. I need to know I’ve won already. I’m almost there but I’m not quite there.” Unbreakable had been produced under Touchstone, a subsidiary of Walt Disney Studios, while Split was produced through Universal Pictures. Shyamalan had to get permission from Disney to reuse Dunn. Shyamalan met with Sean Bailey, President of the Walt Disney Studios, about the use of the character; they came to a gentlemen’s agreement where Bailey agreed to allow the use of the character in the film without a fee and Shyamalan promised that Disney would be involved in a sequel, if developed.
Split was met with critical and financial success, and in February 2017, Shyamalan affirmed his next film would be the third work in the Eastrail 177 Trilogy. Shyamalan finished the script by April 2017, announcing that it would be called Glass and with a target release date of January 18, 2019. Universal will distribute the film in the United States and Disney will distribute the film internationally through its Buena Vista International label.
The cast will include returning actors from both films: Bruce Willis, Samuel L. Jackson, Spencer Treat Clark, and Charlayne Woodard from Unbreakable and James McAvoy and Anya Taylor-Joy from Split will all reprise their respective roles in Glass. Sarah Paulson has also joined the cast as a new character. In November 2017, Adam David Thompson joined the cast in an undisclosed role.
Principal photography on the film began on October 2, 2017 in Philadelphia, following a week of rehearsals. Shyamalan planned for a 39-day shoot in this period. On October 31, 2017 it was reported that Shyamalan was filming at the Allentown State Hospital for the film and would be filming there for a few weeks. On December 12, Shyamalan revealed that 4 scenes are being planned to be shot in January 2018, stating he’d have to travel for those. On February 16, 2018, a scene was filmed at Bryn Mawr College in the athletic center. On July 12, 2018, the first official photographs from production were released, including shots of Samuel L. Jackson, Sarah Paulson, and James McAvoy. Deleted scenes from Unbreakable were also used as flashback sequences in the film.
West Dylan Thordson returned to score the film after his collaboration with the director on Split. He used themes from the score of Unbreakable by James Newton Howard, alongside those of Split, into this score. The score will be distributed digitally by Back Lot Music on January 18, 2019.
On April 25, 2018, the film was featured at CinemaCon, with Shyamalan in attendance. He presented footage from the film, along with the first official image, featuring Willis, Jackson and McAvoy in character. He also expressed his intention with the film saying, “The worlds of Unbreakable and Split finally collide in Glass. What if these real life superheroes and super-villains are somehow locked up together? What could go wrong?” He considered it to be the “first truly grounded comic book movie”.
On July 12, 2018, the first official photographs from production were released, including shots of Samuel L. Jackson, Sarah Paulson, and James McAvoy. On July 20, 2018, the film was promoted at San Diego Comic-Con, with Shyamalan, Willis, Jackson, Taylor-Joy and Paulson attending a panel, where the film’s first trailer premiered.
Glass was theatrically released on January 18, 2019 in the United States by Universal Pictures and in international territories by Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures through the Buena Vista International label. The first screening for Glass occured on January 12, 2019, at 25 Alamo Drafthouse Cinema locations.
In the United States and Canada, Glass is projected to make $50–75 million from 3,841 theaters over its four-day MLK Day opening weekend. It made $16 million on its first day, including $3.7 million from Thursday night previews, marking the best amount of Shyamalan’s career.
Internationally the film is expected to gross $45–50 million in its first weekend, for a total of global opening of $105–120 million.
On review aggregator Rotten Tomatoes, the film holds an approval rating of 35% based on 235 reviews, with an average rating of 5/10. The website’s critical consensus reads, “Glass displays a few glimmers of M. Night Shyamalan at his twisty world-building best, but ultimately disappoints as the conclusion to the writer-director’s long-gestating trilogy.”On Metacritic, which assigns normalized ratings to reviews, the film has a weighted average score of 42 out of 100, based on 47 critics, indicating “mixed or average reviews”.Audiences polled by CinemaScore gave the film an average grade of “B” on an A+ to F scale, down from Split’s “B+” but up from Unbreakable’s “C”, while those at PostTrak gave it an average 3.5 out of 5 stars and a “definite recommend” of 49%.
David Ehrlich of IndieWire gave the film a “C–” and called it the biggest disappointment of Shyamalan’s career, writing: “The trouble with Glass isn’t that its creator sees his own reflection at every turn, or that he goes so far out of his way to contort the film into a clear parable for the many stages of his turbulent career; the trouble with Glass is that its mildly intriguing meta-textual narrative is so much richer and more compelling than the asinine story that Shyamalan tells on its surface.” Writing for Rolling Stone, David Fear gave the film 3/5 stars, writing: “Glass is not the flaming flop some folks have already suggested it is, nor is it the movie you want in terms of tying ambitious, highfalutin notions together about how we process our pulp mythos. In a world in which all movies are now either genocide or ice cream, it’s a grand gesture characterized by a sense of ambivalence about what you’ve just seen—which may in and of itself be a sign of failure.” Laura Di Girolamo of Exclaim! scored the film 6/10, writing, “by virtue of being a followup to two films that have very little to do with each other, Glass struggles the most when it tries to be an effective finale to a trilogy we never realized was one”
Owen Gleiberman of Variety said: “It’s good to see Shyamalan back (to a degree) in form, to the extent that he’s recovered his basic mojo as a yarn spinner. But Glass occupies us without haunting us; it’s more busy than it is stirring or exciting. Maybe that’s because revisiting this material feels a touch opportunistic, and maybe it’s because the deluge of comic-book movies that now threatens to engulf us on a daily basis has leeched what’s left of the mystery out of comics.”
Richard Roeper of the Chicago Sun-Times called the film “an underwhelming, half-baked, slightly sour and even off-putting finale.”  while Joshua Rivera of GQ said that “The timeline is barely comprehensible, with twists so openly telegraphed they’d have saved the Titanic.” 
Aquaman is a 2018 American superhero film based on the DC Comics character of the same name, and distributed by Warner Bros. Pictures. It is the sixth installment in the DC Extended Universe (DCEU). Directed by James Wan, with a screenplay by David Leslie Johnson-McGoldrick and Will Beall, from a story by Geoff Johns, Wan and Beall, it stars Jason Momoa as the title character, with Amber Heard, Willem Dafoe, Patrick Wilson, Dolph Lundgren, Yahya Abdul-Mateen II, and Nicole Kidman in supporting roles. It is the third live-action theatrical film featuring Aquaman, following Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice (2016) and Justice League (2017), and the first full-length feature film centered around the character. In Aquaman, Arthur Curry, the heir to the underwater kingdom of Atlantis, must step forward to lead his people against his half-brother, Orm, who seeks to unite the seven underwater kingdoms against the surface world.
Development of an Aquaman film began in 2004, with several plans falling through over the years. In August 2014, Beall and Kurt Johnstad were hired to write two competing scripts and the film was officially announced in October 2014. Wan signed on as director in April 2015 and in July 2016 it was announced the film would move forward with Beall’s screenplay, although Wan, Johnstad, Johns and Johnson-McGoldrick all performed various rewrites. The main cast was confirmed throughout 2016 and early 2017. Principal photography began in Australia on May 2, 2017. Most of the film was shot at Village Roadshow Studios in Gold Coast, Queensland, with production also held in Canada, Italy and Morocco. Filming wrapped on October 21, 2017.
Aquaman had its world premiere in London on November 26, 2018, and was released in the United States by Warner Bros. Pictures in Real D 3D, Dolby Cinema, IMAX and IMAX 3D on December 21, 2018. The film has grossed over $1 billion worldwide; it is the highest-grossing installment of the DCEU and the fifth highest-grossing film of 2018, as well as the 29th highest-grossing film of all-time. It received praise for its tone, direction, and cinematography, but criticism for the plot, dialogue, and runtime.
In 1985 Maine, lighthouse keeper Thomas Curry rescues Atlanna, the princess of the underwater nation of Atlantis, during a storm. They eventually fall in love and have a son named Arthur, who is born with the power to communicate with marine lifeforms. Atlanna is forced to abandon her family and return to Atlantis, entrusting to her advisor, Nuidis Vulko, the mission of training Arthur. Under Vulko’s guidance, Arthur becomes a skilled warrior but rejects Atlantis upon learning that Atlanna was executed for having a half-breed son.
In the present, one year after Steppenwolf’s invasion,[N 1] Arthur confronts a group of pirates attempting to hijack a Russian Navalnuclear submarine. Their leader, Jesse Kane, dies during the confrontation while his son, David, vows revenge. David later targets Atlantis at the behest of Orm, Arthur’s younger half-brother and Atlantis’ incumbent monarch who uses the attack as a pretext to declare war on the surface world. King Nereus of Xebel swears allegiance to Orm’s cause, but his daughter Mera, who has been betrothed to Orm, refuses to aid them and journeys to the surface to ask Arthur for help, earning his trust by saving Thomas from a tidal wave sent by Orm. Arthur reluctantly accompanies Mera to a rendezvous with Vulko, who urges Arthur to find the Trident of Atlan, a magic artifact that once belonged to Atlantis’ first ruler in order to reclaim his rightful place as king. They are ambushed by Orm’s men and Mera and Vulko escape without having been seen, while Arthur is captured.
Orm visits Arthur in captivity and blames him and the surface for Atlanna’s death. He offers Arthur an opportunity to leave forever, but Arthur instead challenges him to a duel in a ring of underwater lava. Orm gains the upper hand and nearly kills Arthur before Mera rescues him. Together, Arthur and Mera journey to the Sahara desert where the trident was forged and unlock a holographic message that leads them to Sicily, Italy, where they retrieve the trident’s coordinates. Meanwhile, Orm provides David with a prototype Atlantean battle suit to kill Arthur, imprisons Vulko upon learning of his betrayal, and coerces the remaining kingdoms of Atlantis to pledge their allegiance to him and his campaign against the surface.
After modifying Orm’s technology, a fully armored David rechristens himself as Black Manta and ambushes Arthur and Mera in Sicily, injuring Arthur before being thrown off a cliff to his apparent death. Mera nurses Arthur’s wounds as they journey to the trident’s whereabouts, and encourages him to embrace his destiny as a hero. Arriving at their destination, Arthur and Mera are attacked by a legion of amphibious monsters known as The Trench, but manage to fend them off and reach a wormhole that transports them to an uncharted sea located at the center of the Earth. There, they are unexpectedly reunited with Atlanna, who was sacrificed to the Trench for her crimes but managed to escape and reach the uncharted sea, where she has been stranded ever since.
Arthur faces Karathen, the mythical leviathan that guards the trident, and voices his determination to protect both Atlantis and the surface, proving his worth and reclaiming the trident, which grants him control over the seven seas. Orm and his allies lead an army against the crustacean forces of the Kingdom of the Brine with the intent of completing Orm’s surface battle preparations. As Orm declares himself Ocean Master, Arthur, and Mera, with the assistance of Karathen and the Trench, intervene and lead an army of marine creatures in a battle against him. Orm’s followers renounce their obedience to him and embrace Arthur as the true king upon learning he wields the trident. Arthur defeats Orm in combat but chooses to spare his life and Orm accepts his fate after discovering Arthur has found and rescued Atlanna. Atlanna returns to the surface to reunite with Thomas while Arthur ascends to the throne with Mera by his side.
In a mid-credits scene, David is rescued by Dr. Stephen Shin, a scientist obsessed with finding Atlantis, and agrees to lead Shin there in exchange for his help in his revenge on Arthur.
Jason Momoa as Arthur Curry / Aquaman:
A half-Atlantean/half-human who is reluctant to be king of the undersea nation of Atlantis. He has the ability to manipulate the tides of the ocean, communicate with other aquatic life, and swim at supersonic speeds, and possesses superhuman strength. A younger Arthur Curry is portrayed by various actors including an uncredited infant, Tainu and Tamor Kirkwood at age 3, Kaan Guldur at age 9, Otis Dhanji at age 13, and Kekoa Kekumano at age 16.
Amber Heard as Mera:
Arthur Curry’s love interest, a warrior and daughter of King Nereus. She was raised by Queen Atlanna and groomed to become queen. Mera possesses hydrokinetic and telepathic powers that allow her to control her aquatic environment and communicate with other Atlanteans.
Willem Dafoe as Nuidis Vulko:
Atlantis’ counselor, who was a mentor of Arthur Curry when he was young. He trained him to fight as well.
Patrick Wilson as Orm Marius / Ocean Master:
Arthur Curry’s Atlantean half-brother and ruler of Atlantis, who seeks to unite the seven underwater kingdoms to declare war on the surface world out of the belief that humanity polluted the seas.
Dolph Lundgren as Nereus:
The king of the Atlantean tribe of Xebel and Mera’s father, who allies with Orm.
Yahya Abdul-Mateen II as David Kane / Black Manta:
A ruthless pirate and a high-seas mercenary with a flair for creating deadly technological innovations.
Nicole Kidman as Atlanna:
The Queen of Atlantis, mother of Arthur Curry and Orm.
Additionally, Temuera Morrison portrays Thomas Curry, a lighthouse keeper who is Arthur Curry’s father; Ludi Lin portrays Murk, the Captain of the Men-of-War, the frontline army of Atlantis; Randall Park portrays Dr. Stephen Shin, a marine biologist obsessed with finding the lost city of Atlantis; Graham McTavish portrays Atlan, the first king of Atlantis and the ancestor of Atlanna, Orm, and Arthur; and Michael Beach portrays Jesse Kane, a member of a group of pirates and David Kane’s father.
Djimon Hounsou, Natalia Safran, and Sophia Forrest play the Fisherman King Nicou, the Fisherman Queen, and the Fisherman Princess respectively, whom Orm creates an alliance with as part of his plan to unite the seven kingdoms of the sea where the former provided the voice of King Nicou. Julie Andrews provides the voice of Karathen, a mythical leviathan that allies with Aquaman. While Andrew Crawford provides the motion-capture of King Nicou, he also provides the motion-capture of the Brine King, who is voiced by John Rhys-Davies. Leigh Whannell, Wan’s long time collaborator, appears in the film as a plane pilot.
In 2004, FilmJerk.com reported that Sunrise Entertainment’s Alan and Peter Riche planned to bring Aquaman to the big screen for Warner Bros., with Robert Ben Garant writing the screenplay. However, the film fell through. In July 2009, it was reported that Aquaman was in development at Leonardo DiCaprio’s Appian Way, and Warner chairman and CEO Barry Meyer said that the Aquaman film was in development. After Man of Steel’s release in 2013, a source from Warner Bros. told The Wrap that they were discussing future films, with the mention of more Man of Steel movies as well as a Superman/Batman film, a Wonder Woman film, and an Aquaman film. Geoff Johns told Variety that Aquaman is a priority character for the company. It was announced on August 12, 2014, that Warner Bros. had hired screenwriters Will Beall and Kurt Johnstad to pen two separate scripts for an Aquaman film. The film was being developed on dual tracks, meaning that one script was being by Beall and one by Johnstad, but only the better version would move forward.
On April 10, 2015, The Hollywood Reporter reported that James Wan was the frontrunner to direct the film. In June 2015, Wan was confirmed to direct, and overlook the screenplay by Johnstad. On November 12, 2015, David Leslie Johnson-McGoldrick was hired to write the script, however it was unclear whether he would be writing a separate script or working with Wan. It was then revealed that previous script plans had been scrapped and that both Wan and Johns planned to move forward with a new script written by Beall. Later, Johnson-McGoldrick was brought back to the project to work on a rewrite of Beall’s script.
On March 2016, it was announced that the events of Aquaman will be set after Justice League. Wan confirmed later on Twitter that cinematographer Don Burgess, who had previously worked with Wan on The Conjuring 2, would serve as cinematographer for Aquaman. Pre-production began in Australia in late November 2016.
Jason Momoa at 2017 San Diego Comic-Con International
In October 2014, Warner Bros. announced Aquaman as a part of the DC Extended Universe, with Jason Momoa starring. On October 20, 2014, in an interview with ComicBook.com, Momoa revealed that he was preparing for a Justice League film, and that he did not know if a solo Aquaman film would come before or after Justice League. He thought it might be an origin story of where Aquaman came from. In December 2014, it was revealed that Momoa had signed a four-picture deal with the studio and DC, and he wanted Zack Snyder to direct the solo Aquaman film.
On January 13, 2016, The Hollywood Reporter announced that Amber Heard had entered negotiations to play the female lead role of Mera, Aquaman’s love interest; her casting was confirmed two months later. In April 2016, Willem Dafoe was cast in an undisclosed role, later revealed to be Nuidis Vulko. On December 12, 2016 it was confirmed that Patrick Wilson would play the villainous Ocean Master, the half-brother of Aquaman. On January 31, 2017, Yahya Abdul-Mateen II was added to the cast as Black Manta, Aquaman’s archenemy in the comics. That same day, press reports noted that Nicole Kidman had entered talks to play Queen Atlanna. Two months later, Kidman confirmed her participation in the film.
By February 2017, New Zealand actor Temuera Morrison had entered talks to play Thomas Curry, Aquaman’s human father. On April 12, Dolph Lundgren was cast to play Nereus, king of Xebel. Ludi Lin was cast in the film on May 15, 2017. Almost two weeks later, Michael Beach, who voiced Devil Ray, a character loosely based on Black Manta in Justice League Unlimited, was cast as Black Manta’s father. In October 2017, Graham McTavish revealed that he has a role in the film. In April 2018, Randall Park was cast as Dr. Stephen Shin, and in July, Djimon Hounsou, Natalia Safran and Sophia Forrest were cast as the Fisherman King, Fisherman Queen and the Fisherman Princess, respectively. In November 2018, it was revealed that Julie Andrews has a voice role in the film.
Principal photography began in Australia on May 2, 2017, under the working title Ahab. A majority of the film was shot at Village Roadshow Studios in Gold Coast, Queensland, with production also held in Newfoundland, Canada, as well as in Sicily and Morocco. Between May and August 2017, production also took place on location around a number of places on the Australian Gold Coast, including Main Beach, Coomera, Southport and Amity Point in North Stradbroke Island, Queensland, as well as Hastings Point in New South Wales. On filming underwater sequences, Wan stated that “the underwater world is super complicated” and “it’s not an easy shoot.”
Filming began on the Arthur Curry Lighthouse set at Hastings Point on August 11, 2017, and ended later that month. In September, during an interview with Kiss Radio, actor Ludi Lin described Wan’s vision for the film as “Star Wars underwater.” That same month, filming took place in Newfoundland and Labrador. Willem Dafoe finished up his part by late September. On October 13, James Wan announced that Patrick Wilson wrapped on the film. Filming on location took place in the deserts of Morocco by mid-October, which included the cities of Merzouga and Erfoud. Principal photography wrapped on October 21, 2017.
James Wan’s five-time collaborator Kirk Morri served as the editor for Aquaman. Two-time Academy Award winner Charles Gibson (Babe and Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man’s Chest), and Kelvin McIlwain (The Fast and the Furious franchise), served as overall visual effects supervisors.
Altogether there are 2,300 visual effects shots in the movie completed by Industrial Light & Magic (ILM), Rodeo FX, Scanline VFX, DNEG, Moving Picture Company (MPC), Method Studios, and Digital Domain On November 3, 2018, Wan announced that post-production on the film was complete.
Industrial Light & Magic (ILM)
ILM was the lead VFX vendor and worked on creating Atlantis and all its CG animals, the Karathen and the final battle of the film. Jeff White served as the VFX supervisor for ILM on Aquaman.For the underwater sequences the actors were shot dry for wet on special tuning fork rigs designed by the FX team and later the bodies of the actors were replaced with digital boubles in post production.For creating Atlantis the team relied on the designs provided by the art department. ILM’s environment team created over 200 buildings, including the signature jellyfish buildings and laid over 7000 buildings in districts covering almost 600 sq miles for the action to travel through.The underwater ships were modeled off organic creatures and designed to move that way. For the entrance to Atlantis sequence the team built over 150,000 ships to fill the traffic lanes leading into Atlantis . All the animals including the Karathen were built by ILM and animated using keyframe animation
Approximately 700 shots in the film required high detail hair simulaions. ILM had to significantly improve their hair simulation software due to the unique aspects of hair flowing underwater. Normally hair simulations use guide strands to define or influence the movement of groups of hair strands. This did not provide a satisfying look for underwater simulation, so ultimately ILM simulated strands individually, which resulted in heavy computations. Additionally, Wan wanted to be able to direct the hair when the physically accurate simulation resulted in undesirable results.ILM delivered 670 shots for the film
Additionally,DNEG worked on digitally de-ageing Willem Dafoe for the scene where his character Nudris Vulko trains the young Arthur Curry.
Jay Barton served as the VFX supervisor for Digital Domain. They worked on creating the Dead King’s Island environment.For the sequence the actors were shot in a pool of water against blue screen backgrounds with Digital Domain adding CG extentions,waterfalls, mountains and dinosaurs in post production.Most of the waterfalls that appear in the scene were created using Houdini while some were created using practical elements of things such as pouring salt and glass beads.They also built an extensive library of shot FX elements. The dinosaurs were animated using keyframe animation. Digital Domain delivered 19-20 shots for the movie.
David Nelson and Craig Wentworth served as VFX supervisors for Method Studios.Method handled the Sicily fight sequence between Arthur, Mera and Black Manta;Arthur’s encounter with the Karathen in the Well of the Souls and his acquisition of Atlan’s Trident. For the Sicily fight sequence the team built the main square of the Italian village and terracotta tiled roof set pieces that were backed with blue screen. A completely CG village was also created based on scans and documentation of the real village. For the Well of the Souls sequence Momoa was filmed dry-for-wet and captured on set in rigs that simulated underwater movements but they ultimately felt restrictive so artists replaced the majority of his performance with a digital body double and added the CG environment, Karathen and Arthur’s free-flowing locks. A specially designed 700 fps shot was used in the scene where the camera travels through Arthur’s eyes.
Rodeo FX worked on two key sequences for the film, with Sebastien Moreau leading as VFX Supervisor for the film. For the aquarium that young Arthur Curry visits near the beginning of the film, Rodeo FX made used a large volume of simulations as well as algorithms for the fish behavior. They created hard and soft corals by developing a colonization growth system, along with procedural stem and tentacle generation tools. They also created the environments for the Atlantis ruins below the desert.Artists used a lego-type approach to layer the environment with a large amount of sand, dust and rocks, all of which would realistically give way to the characters’ interactions. From there, they sculpted ruined buildings, bridges, towers, statues and temples, which textured and shaded to add depth to the ruined city.
Scanline VFX delivered 450 shots for the movie.Bryan Hirota served as VFX supervisor for scanline.The main sequences produced by them are: The lighthouse and it’s surround environment, the “Aquaman” title card that follows the Boston aquarium, Aquaman pushing the submarine to the surface and rescuing the sailors inside, Orm’s tidal wave that sweeps away Arthur and Tom including the rescue and aftermath, Black Manta being paid by Orm for the submarine’s delivery and Arthur and Mera’s visit to the Kingdom of the Trench. For the creation of the film’s title card the team relied on Rodeo’s work on the aquarium sequence and simulated up to 60,000 fish. The tidal wave sequence was realized with a large-scale simulated wave, which was integrated with a combination of day for night footage, blue screen shots for the actors in truck interiors, a truck on a rotisserie rig, an interior cabin in a water tank, and VFX simulations for debris.For creating the lighthouse a full-size house with the base of the lighthouse tower constructed by the FX team.Additional house and dock sets were built on sound stages. A digital build-out was done to complete the lighthouse tower and extend the dock fully out to sea. For the sequence where the camera pushes into a toy snowglobe with a tiny lighthouse inside a CG transition was created from the lighthouse’s living room set to a fully CG winter coastline.For creating the trench creatures motion capture was done on set by stunt performers.
Main article: Aquaman (soundtrack)
On March 7, 2018, Rupert Gregson-Williams was announced as the composer for Aquaman. Gregson-Williams previously wrote the score for Wonder Woman, the fourth film in the DC Extended Universe. The soundtrack was released by WaterTower Music on December 14, 2018. The album features an original song by American musician Skylar Greyentitled “Everything I Need”, written by Grey and Elliott Taylor. The second trailer featured a piece called “Sidewinder” from composer Phil Lober of Ghostwriter Music.
In March 2017, prior to filming, a first look at Aquaman was shown during the CinemaCon convention in Las Vegas, Nevada, with Momoa introducing a video of director James Wan displaying a concept art sizzle reel for the film. Later, on July 22, the film’s first footage made its debut at San Diego Comic-Con (SDCC) 2017 with a teaser presented by Momoa during the Warner Bros. panel at Hall H; director Wan presented the footage, stating that “in a lot of ways, this is an origin story,” referring to the film. In April 2018, another teaser, with new rough footage, was shown by Wan and Momoa at CinemaCon, joined by Amber Heard, Patrick Wilson and Yahya Abdul-Mateen II on stage. In an interview with Entertainment Weekly during the event, Wan teased the conflict between Arthur Curry and his half-brother and main antagonist in the film, Orm / Ocean Master, stating that “it’s almost a very classic Shakespearean story about brother from another world vs. brother from another world. And it really is a classic story of sibling rivalry.”
Cast and director of Aquaman at the 2018 San Diego Comic-Con. From left to right: Jason Momoa, Amber Heard, Nicole Kidman, Patrick Wilson, Yahya Abdul-Mateen II and James Wan
On June 11, 2018, the film’s first trailer was previewed at the European exhibitors’ conference CineEurope in Barcelona, Spain. A first look at Black Manta, Ocean Master, Queen Atlanna and Nuidis Vulko was revealed by Entertainment Weekly on June 14, 2018. On July 16, 2018, an official teaser poster was released. On July 21, 2018, the first trailer was released at the SDCC 2018, being considered the best received trailer during the international convention; it was later attached to theatrical showings of Teen Titans Go! To the Movies, Mission: Impossible – Fallout, The Meg, The Predator, and Venom. The cast also appeared as guests on the late-night talk show Conan with Conan O’Brien during SDCC, on Sunday, July 22. By late August of the same year, the studio held early test screenings, with mixed to positive reactions shared in social media, describing the film as good but not great. On October 5, 2018, a 5-minute Extended Video was released by Warner Bros. It received positive reactions from audiences, with praise directed towards the special effects, action, cinematography, and faithfulness to the comic book. The first official TV spot for the film was released by the studio on October 16, 2018, followed by a second on November 1, 2018.The same month, character posters were released for Aquaman, Mera, Black Manta, Ocean Master, King Nereus, Queen Atlanna and Nuidis Vulko.
On November 7, 2018, the studio announced the schedule for the worldwide promotion tour, taking place during the months of November and December, with fan events, screenings and premieres in major cities around the globe, including Beijing, London, New York City, Manila, Los Angeles, Miami, Gold Coast, Sydney, and Hawaii. Additionally, it was announced that the film would be screened on December 7, 2018, during Brazil Comic Con (CCXP) in São Paulo. The following week, an official behind the scenes featurette was released, which included footage not seen before in the mainstream trailers. Two days later, the film’s two main posters were released, with Aquaman and Mera showing off their comic-accurate suits. On November 19, 2018, the final trailer for the film was released, alongside the announcement of the beginning of ticket sales. The same day, 30 minutes of footage was shown in China during the first stop of the film’s promotion tour, generating rave reactions among attendees.
The financial success of the film has been attributed to the studio’s marketing plan, attracting a wide range of demographics (particularly women) through advertising, social media and promotional partners worldwide.
Aquaman had its world premiere at the Empire, Leicester Square in London on November 26, 2018. It was released in the United States by Warner Bros. Pictures in RealD 3D, Dolby Cinema, IMAX and IMAX 3D on December 21, 2018. It had previously been set for July 27, 2018, and was then moved to October 5, 2018, before settling on its December release date. On November 19, 2018, Atom Tickets announced that Amazon Prime members in the United States would have early access to tickets for a December 15 screening of the film at select Regal, National Amusements, ArcLight Cinemas, and AMC theaters.
Internationally, the film was released in China on December 7, 2018, in the United Kingdom on December 12, 2018, in Argentina, Brazil and Russia on December 13, 2018, and in India on December 14, 2018.
As of January 18, 2019, Aquaman has grossed $296.5 million in the United States and Canada, and $743.9 million in other territories, for a total worldwide gross of $1.040 billion.
The day after announcing the early Amazon screenings, Aquaman’s first 24-hour pre-sale totals became the highest in the history of Atom Tickets, beating out Avengers: Infinity War, as well as outpacing Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle, another film Amazon Prime offered early to subscribers, the previous December. The film made $2.9 million from the Amazon preview screenings at 1,225 theaters, higher than the $1.86 million made by Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle. In the United States and Canada, Aquaman was released alongside Bumblebee, Second Act, and Welcome to Marwen, and was projected to gross $65–70 million in its opening weekend, and $120 million over its first five days (with some tracking figures going as high as $150 million). The film made $28 million on its first day, including $9 million from Thursday night previews (a total of $13.7 million including the Amazon screenings and a Wednesday preview). It went on to debut to $67.9 million ($73.2 million including all early showings), topping the box office but marking the lowest opening of the DCEU. It then made $11 million on Monday and $22.1 million on Christmas Day, one of six films to ever gross over $20 million on the holiday; its five-day total opening was $105.7 million. The film made $52.1 million in its second weekend, a drop of 23%, as well as $10.1 million on New Year’s Eve and $16.8 million on New Year’s Day. The film then remained in first for a third consecutive weekend, grossing $31 million. The film made $17.4 million in its fourth weekend of release but was upset by The Upside, which exceeded expectations to debut to $20.4 million and dethrone Aquaman atop the box office.
In China, where the film was released two weeks prior to its US debut, the film made $24.6 million (¥169.5 million) on its first day, representing 86% of the market share and setting a Warner Bros. opening day record in the country. It went on to debut to $93.6 million (¥644.8 million), marking the best-ever opening for the DCEU, Warner Bros. and a December release in the country. It also overtook the entire lifetime gross of Wonder Woman there in just three days. The film grossed $12.99 million on Monday, thus crossing $100 million ($107.7 million). By Thursday, its fifth day of release, the film had made $135.3 million, surpassing the lifetime totals of every solo Marvel Cinematic Universe film. As of January 14, 2019, the film has grossed $293.70 million in China.
On review aggregator Rotten Tomatoes, the film holds an approval rating of 64% based on 316 reviews, with an average rating of 6/10. The website’s critical consensus reads, “Aquaman swims with its entertainingly ludicrous tide, offering up CGI superhero spectacle that delivers energetic action with an emphasis on good old-fashioned fun.” Metacriticsurveyed 49 critics’ reviews and assessed 22 as positive, 21 as mixed and 6 as negative; the website assigned an aggregate score of 55 out of 100, indicating “mixed or average reviews”. Audiences polled by CinemaScore gave the film an average grade of “A−” on an A+ to F scale, while those at PostTrak gave it an 82% overall positive score and a 69% “definite recommend”.
Peter Debruge of Variety criticized the dialogue but praised Wan’s direction, the production design, and the final act, writing, “The biggest surprise here is how, after the running time of a standard-length film has elapsed, Aquaman suddenly kicks the movie up a level for the finale. At just the moment this critic’s eyes tend to glaze over in superhero movies—typically, as the villain goes nuclear and a portal to another dimension opens, threatening to destroy the planet—Wan unleashes a massive deep-sea battle on par with The Lord of the Rings.” Germain Lussier of io9 wrote “Aquaman is all about spectacle. It’s filled with ambition. It’s always about trying to put the coolest, most imaginative sequence on screen at every single turn of the story, no matter what the cost.” Writing for TheWrap, William Bibbiani called the film “a weird and wonderful superhero adventure that strives—and almost succeeds—to be the most epic superhero movie ever made.”
Writing for Rolling Stone, Peter Travers gave the film 2.5/5 stars, praising Wan’s ambition and Momoa’s performance but criticizing the plot and dialogue, writing: “Aquaman is a mess of clashing tones and shameless silliness, but a relief after all the franchise’s recent superhero gloom.” Chris Nashawaty of Entertainment Weekly graded the film a C−, writing, “It can’t decide if it wants to be silly or serious—a superhero movie or a parody of one…Unfortunately, the bloated, waterlogged film is loaded with crummy CGI, cheesy costumes, and groaner dialogue delivered by actors who are too good to traffic in such nonsense”. For the Chicago Tribune, Michael Phillips gave the film 1.5 stars out of 4, criticizing the film’s script and Wan’s direction, saying, “Watching this movie is like spending two hours and 27 minutes staring at a gigantic aquarium full of digital sea creatures and actors on wires, pretending to swim.”
In December 2018, The Hollywood Reporter announced via Warner Brothers Pictures chairman Toby Emmerich that the studio is developing a sequel. Discussions of a followup film began during post-production, when director James Wan stated to TotalFilm that the first film leaves room for further stories. Jason Momoa told SyfyWire that he has the beginning for a sequel written, and that after he pitched it to the studio through Emmerich and Safran, they were receptive and enthusiastic about his ideas.
Memories of the Alhambra
This article is about the South Korean TV series. For the guitar composition whose name is rendered in English as Memories of the Alhambra, see Recuerdos de la Alhambra.
Memories of the Alhambra (Hangul: 알함브라 궁전의 추억; RR: Alhambeura Goongjeonui Chooeok) is an ongoing 2018 South Korean television series starring Hyun Bin, Park Shin-hye and Park Hoon. The series premiered on cable network tvN on December 1, 2018. The series is also aired via Netflix.
The drama is one of the highest rated Korean dramas in cable television history.
2.2.1J One Holdings
2.2.2People around Hee-joo
2.2.3People around Hyung-seok
After receiving an email regarding a groundbreaking AR game about medieval battles in Alhambra, Yoo Jin-woo (Hyun Bin), CEO of an investment company that specializes in optical devices, travels to Granada, Spain to meet the creator of the game, Jung Se-joo (Park Chan-yeol). However, Se-joo is missing and there, he meets his sister Jung Hee-joo (Park Shin-hye), owner of the hostel he stays in and a former guitarist. Both get entangled in a mysterious incident, and the border between the real world and the AR world built by Se-joo begins to blur.
Hyun Bin as Yoo Jin-woo
Chief executive officer of investment company J One Holdings; Doctor of Engineering who is talented at developing games. He is fearless, adventurous and cynical.
Park Shin-hye as Jung Hee-joo / Emma
Lee Chae-yoon as young Jee Hee-joo
Jung Hee-joo: Owner of Bonita hostel. A former classic guitarist who came to Spain for further studies, but took on several jobs there to sustain livelihood following the death of her parents. She has artistic sensibility but zero financial sense.
Emma: An NPC character in the AR game created by Se-joo.
Park Hoon as Cha Hyung-seok
CEO of IT company Neword; Doctor of Engineering. Jin-woo’s college friend and co-founder of J One Holdings; who later betrayed him and became his biggest rival. He is proud and competitive.
J One Holdings
Lee Seung-joon as Park Son-ho
Business Strategy Director of J One Holdings. Jin-woo’s college senior.
Min Jin-woong as Seo Jung-hoon
Jo Hyun-chul as Choi Yang-joo
Head of R&D Center Research Team of J One Holdings.
People around Hee-joo
Kim Yong-rim as Oh Young-shim
Park Chan-yeol as Jung Se-joo
Kim Jun-eui as young Jung Se-joo
Hee-joo’s younger brother. A genius reclusive programmer who develops an intricate augmented reality game.
Lee Re as Jung Min-joo
Hee-joo’s younger sister. She dreams of becoming a girl group member.
Lee Hak-joo as Kim Sang-bum
A classic guitarist and international student at Spain. He is close to Hee-joo and cares for her, but often oversteps his boundaries.
People around Hyung-seok
Lee Si-won as Lee Soo-jin
Jin-woo’s first ex-wife; Hyung-seok’s current wife. A pediatrician.
Kim Eui-sung as Cha Byung-jun
Hyung-seok’s father. Professor of Business Administration at Korea University. A selfish and ambitious man.
Ryu Abel as Lee Soo-kyung
Soo-jin’s sister. A florist.
Han Bo-reum as Ko Yoo-ra
Jin-woo’s second ex-wife. A celebrity who is vain and impulsive.
Lee Jae-wook as Marco Han
A programmer and hacker who is affiliated to Se-joo.
Park Jin-woo as Noh Yong-jun
Yoo-ra’s manager and ex-boyfriend.
A medical student that stays at Hee-joo’s hostel.
Jung Min-sung as Hee-joo’s father
Choi Yoo-song as Hee-joo’s mother
Kim Hyun-mook as Game company employee
Park Hae-soo as A
A detective who collects intelligence for Jin-woo.
Park Seul-gi as Entertainment News Reporter
Park Jong-jin as News Reporter
Anh Sung-sup as News Reporter
The series is helmed by director Ahn Gil-ho, who directed Stranger and writer Song Jae-jung whose previous works include W and Queen In-hyun’s Man.
Touted as Korea’s first augmented reality-gaming drama, Memories of the Alhambra was revealed to be inspired by tech mogul Elon Musk and the Pokemon Go game.
The first script reading took place in May 2018.
Overseas filming took place in several cities in Spain, such as Granada, Barcelona (Terrassa) and Girona from late May to June. In early August, the cast started filming in Budapest, Hungary and Slovenia. The script for the last episode was completed on December 19, 2018 and filming wrapped up on December 29, 2018.
A preview screening event was held at CGV theaters on November 28, 2018 prior to the airing of the first episode.
Memories of the Alhambra was a commercial success, consistently topping the cable television viewership ratings in its timeslot. Its 14th episode recorded a 10.025% nationwide audience share according to Nielsen paid platform, making it as one of the highest rated in Korean cable television history.
The drama has attracted attention for its unique theme of augmented reality; and earned praise for as its high-end computer graphics, cinematography and fast-paced storytelling.Critic Jeong Seok-hee praised the drama for its mysterious and captivating plot that held viewers’ attention until the very end, and that it “has the potential to become one of the very best TV dramas we have seen in years”. However later on, it received criticism for its confusing development and slow development of plot, and its excessive product placement.
According to the Korean Foundation for International Cultural Exchange, the series is receiving favorable reviews and popularity in China for its actors’ performance, cinematography and fresh story.
In this table, the blue numbers represent the lowest ratings and the red numbers represent the highest ratings.
N/A denotes that the rating is not known.
This drama airs on a cable channel/pay TV which normally has a relatively smaller audience compared to free-to-air TV/public broadcasters (KBS, SBS, MBC and EBS).
Memories of the Alhambra will be broadcast on Netflix in Asia and English-speaking territories an hour after its broadcast in Korea. In Japan, the drama will broadcast on December 2, while in Europe, South America and the rest of the world, it will be launch starting December 11.
Directed by: Joel and Ethan Coen
Nominations: (3) Best Adapted Screenplay, Best Costume Design, Best Original Song
Would this have worked as a Netflix series? Did packaging it as an anthology movie give Scruggs the jolt of mystique necessary to let viewers overlook the long, boring stretches, or the ending that doesn’t go anywhere (uh, literally), or the very loose theme of “death … in the Old West”? Scruggs has its moments, and it certainly has its fans, but I ain’t one of ’em.
Stream The Ballad of Buster Scruggs on Netflix.
30. Avengers: Infinity War
Directed by: Joe and Anthony Russo Nominations: (1) Best Visual Effects
The films of the Marvel Cinematic Universe have always been more self-contained than they’ve been given credit for, telling complete stories that one could plausibly enjoy without having consumed the entire epic series. Not so with Infinity War, which plays less like a story and more like that thing where you’re a kid and you smash all your action figures together. Not that that doesn’t make for the kinds of wonderful character crossovers fans have been waiting years for (I was particularly partial to the trio of Black Widow, Scarlet Witch, and Okoye wrecking shit on the battlefield), but it’s definitely the first MCU movie that felt purely like a cog.
3. Can You Ever Forgive Me?
Directed by: Marielle Heller
Nominations: (3) Best Actress, Best Supporting Actor, Best Adapted Screenplay
To call Lee Israel, as played to utter perfection by Melissa McCarthy, abrasive would be an insult to Brillo Pads. The semi-unsuccessful celebrity biographer stalks the New York City of the early ’90s, hopping from daytime bar to bookstore to nighttime bar to her crappy apartment, leaving a trail of invective in her wake. And then one day, she stumbles upon the idea to start forging original correspondence from the notable figures she’s been writing about. Can You Ever Forgive Me? is a scammer’s movie, yes, but it’s also a movie about dealing with failure in New York; about the value of queer friendships (enter the sublime Richard E. Grant); and about feeling like less of a fraud, even when you’re being fraudulent, because at least you’re using your talents. One of the true, pure pleasures of awards season.
50 top movies of the 21st Century so Far
50. Mystic River (2003)
The performances of Sean Penn and Tim Robbins loom large over Clint Eastwood’s powerful “Mystic River.” They dig into the shattered souls of men who take different paths from childhood to adulthood. But regardless of who got in that car, their lives can’t help but intersect.
(Photo: Columbia Pictures)
49. Spider-Man 2 (2004)
With “Black Panther” scoring big with critics and audiences, it reminds us of the movie that previously held the title of best film based on a Marvel character. The blueprint for the modern, mainstream superhero movie film lies with “Spider-Man 2,” from the strong female lead to the flawed superhero we see ourselves in. There may never be a better Spider-Man than Toby Maguire in terms of portraying a young man struggling with accepting the burden of greatness.
(Photo: Universal Pictures)
48. Bridesmaids (2011)
The past 10 years have featured an abundance of raunchy bro comedies. But Kristen Wiig topped them all in terms of showmanship with “Bridesmaids” by crafting an amazing script and assembling one of the best female-driven casts of all time.
Photo Credit: Universal Pictures
47. Get Out (2017)
Jordan Peele’s original ending for “Get Out” had the main character getting arrested for the murder of the white family that intended to steal his brain. The change gives humor to a film with several twist and turns that prove haunting. Could it really happen? Probably not. Probably.
(Photo: Newmarket Films)
46. Donnie Darko (2001)
“Donnie Darko” is a weird movie that’s hard to classify. But that’s why it continues to resonate. It’s a science fiction film filled with teenage troubles and battles with moralities. “Donnie Darko” accomplishes with an immense amount of tension driven by the first great performance of Jake Gyllenhaal’s career.
45. Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy (2004)
Will Ferrell created one of the most iconic film characters of the past two decades in Ron Burgundy. It’s an over the top, laugh out loud performance aided by several supporting turns, the best of which is Steve Carell’s Brick, who “loves lamp.”
(Photo: Universal PIctures)
44. The Bourne Ultimatum (2007)
During the mid-2000s, every studio wanted a “Bourne” style film. Most tried, but few succeeded in even coming close to measuring up to Matt Damon led franchise, whose peak comes with “The Bourne Ultimatum,” an absolute thrill ride that never stops.
(Photo: Warner Bros.)
43. Her (2013)
“Her” is a movie that may always be ahead of its time. Spike Jonze’s story redefines the concept of love, as a lovable man (Joaquin Phoenix) falls in love with his operating system. It sounds nuts. But Jonze, along with Phoenix and Scarlett Johansson’s voice, pieces together a perfect love story of the future.
(Photo: Fox Searchlight)
42. Slumdog Millionaire (2008)
Danny Boyle is been great at taking films focused on certain cultures and giving them a mainstream, international appeal. The best example of that is “Slumdog Millionaire,” an exciting and heartfelt film with a satisfying ending Oscar voters couldn’t help but embrace.
41. Apocalypto (2006)
Even after the controversial release of “Passion of the Christ” and his own personal problems, there was no denying Mel Gibson’s “Apocalypto” as the epic piece of filmmaking that it was. With very few words uttered, he tells a story of survival and family that keeps you on the edge of your seat.
40. The Artist (2011)
There’s an understating beauty and brilliance that comes with Best Picture winner “The Artist.” Thus is the case for a silent movie that serves as a lover letter for old-school Hollywood. But don’t let the cheesiness fool you. This is pure art with performances worthy of the awards they received.
(Photo: Universal Pictures)
39. The 40 Year-Old Virgin (2005)
“40 Year-Old Virgin” takes what would become director Judd Apatow’s go-to premise – a down on his luck loser looking to land a hot girl – and rides it to perfection. Steve Carell is the most endearing of Apatow’s leading men, surrounded by the hilarious trio of Paul Rudd, Romany Malco and Seth Rogen.
(Photo: Fox Searchlight)
38. 28 Days Later (2002)
The most riveting horror film of the past 15 years, “28 Days Later” defies the rules of the zombie apocalypse. The “infected” are fast and menacing. But it gives Danny Boyle’s picture bite (pun intended), while examining the social and political dismay that’s bound to come when the world falls apart.
(Photo: Universal Pictures)
37. Traffic (2000)
“Traffic” was a bit too dark and real for Academy voters in 2001, earning four awards, but somehow not Best Picture. Looking back, “Traffic” plays like the best ensemble piece of its era with precise editing that ties together harsh stories about the drug trade and mesmerizing performances from Benecio Del Toro, Don Cheadle and Catherine Zeta- Jones.
36. Munich (2005)
It was easy to gloss over Steven Spielberg’s “Munich” when it was released for two reasons. 1) In some ways, it felt more like an action film than an examination of the 1972 Olympics tragedy. 2) That sex scene at the film’s end is cringe-worthy. In retrospect this is a movie that moves you through intensity and thrilling scenes, only to realize that vengeance or even justice can’t cloud the fact that violence brings about more violence.
(Photo: Open Road)
35. Spotlight (2015)
The 2016 Best Picture winner accomplishes a small movie miracle. Thanks to restraint and brilliant performances, “Spotlight” takes a subject few want to rehash – the sexual abuse of children in the Catholic Church – and makes a stunning, moving and watchable film out of it.
(Photo: Summit Entertainment)
34. The Hurt Locker (2008)
There’s more to making a war film than brutal action. “The Hurt Locker” has some of that, but focuses more on the psychology of an adrenaline junkie (the fantastic Jeremy Renner) who finds his only sense of purpose in what most would consider a death wish.
33. Kill Bill: Vol. 1 and 2 (2003-2004)
It’s hard to choose between Quentin Tarantino’s two-part martial arts epic. It’s also hard to separate them. “Kill Bill” is a revenge piece dressed up in style, creating a mesmerizing art piece with a high replay factor. It’s also the last time Tarantino’s vision seemed as precise as his 1990s classics.
32. Whiplash (2014)
There’s a fine line between genius and psychopath, something magnified in the student/teacher relationship showcased in “Whiplash.” The performances of Miles Teller and J.K. Simmons are top-notch in a movie with one of the best end scenes you will ever see.
31. Black Panther (2018)
You had a feeling “Black Panther” would be good. But not THIS good. The film rates as one of the best superhero movies of all time and one that served as a game-changer for Marvel. The amazing cast, story and larger worldview is one of the best winning combinations in cinema of the past few years.
(Photo: New Line Productions)
30. A History of Violence (2005)
Based on a graphic novel of the same name, David Cronenberg’s thrilling “A History of Violence” plays out like a coiled spring that explodes. It’s smart and powerful with performances that delight, from the mysterious Viggo Mortensen to the stunning wit of William Hurt.
29. Toy Story 3 (2010)
Pixar’s greatest film brings not only a story to its proper evolution, but also showcases how far the studio has come. “Toy Story” is Pixar’s richest film in terms of storytelling and packs the biggest emotional punch, as the lovable toys realize, like their owner, that childhood and innocence can’t last forever.
28. Drive (2011)
Ryan Gosling’s character never gets an actual name in “Drive.” That’s on purpose, as he’s supposed to function like an unemotional vehicle. But that changes when he meets Carey Mulligan’s Irene and their chemistry radiates off the screen. “Drive” is a modish film that has a tremendous cool factor. You’ll want to watch it again and again.
(Photo: The Weinstein Co.)
27. The Master (2012)
You can’t watch “The Master” just once. That wouldn’t do Paul Thomas Anderson’s epic justice. Nor would it allow you to fully grasp this dark and cunning story of Scientology (though that word is never uttered). The performances of an overpowering Philip Seymour Hoffman and a completely vulnerable Joaquin Phoenix serve as a master class in acting.
(Photo: Universal Pictures)
26. Mulholland Drive (2001)
A film as unique as they come, David Lynch’s neo-noir masterpiece keeps you on the edge of your seat while it slowly ties together various storylines into one thrilling end game. “Mulholland Drive” is strange, sexual, stylish and engaging in the best ways possible.
(Photo: Sony Pictures Classics)
25. Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon (2000)
It shouldn’t surprise anyone that, 16 years later, we’re finally getting a sequel to Ang Lee’s gorgeous martial arts film. It’s a visual masterwork that easily stands the test of time, elevating its genre into something that equals cinematic art.
24. Memento (2000)
It wasn’t enough for Christopher Nolan to play with the way in which a film reveals its story. He had to give us the shocking ending as well. By the time “Memento,” one of the best psychological thrillers ever made, gets to its conclusion, you realize the unthinkable – you’ve been rooting for the wrong man all along.
23. Pan’s Labyrinth (2006)
There’s a reason people get excited when they see Guillermo del Toro’s name attached to a project. He has a few stellar films to his credit, but “Pan’s Labyrinth” is the one that will leave you in awe. It’s a monster movie with immense beauty; a creepy version of “Alice in Wonderland;” a poetic masterpiece.
(Photo: Warner Bros.)
22. Mad Max: Fury Road (2015)
In a world of CGI and special effects, George Miller decided it was time to go old school. He spent months upon months building vehicles and choreographing stunts that would make “Mad Max: Fury Road” seem unlike any other film of today. Mission accomplished.
(Photo: Fox Searchlight)
21. The Wrestler (2008)
“The Wrestler” is the simplest move of stylish director Darren Aronofsky’s career. It’s also his most sincere. Mickey Rourke gives the performance of a lifetime, both physically and emotionally, as a professional wrestler who can only find happiness abusing his body in the ring. Your heart breaks for him.
20. Almost Famous (2000)
Director Cameron Crowe puts his love of music on full display in “Almost Famous,” one of the easiest movies to fall for. Everyone brings his or her A-game, in an ensemble movie where the chemistry is through the roof. It’s a touching love letter to the joy of music that will hit you right in the heart.
19. Wall-E (2008)
Pixar’s most visually impressive film operates, for the most part, without the need for words. The most impressive thing “Wall-E” accomplishes is making you fall in love with a trash compactor with a heart of gold. Perhaps no film showcases the magic of Pixar more.
(Photo: Focus Features)
18. Lost in Translation (2003)
Even with all his fantastic comedies, “Lost in Translation” is Bill Murray’s greatest performance. Sure, there’s humor. But Sofia Coppola’s film paints a portrait of loneliness in a crowded world. And Murray scores with it, bringing a worthy Scarlett Johansson up to his level of poignant acting.
(Photo: Focus Features)
17. Far from Heaven (2002)
Todd Haynes’ “Far from Heaven” is a period piece that carries a timeless vibe. The cinematography is fantastic and the performances are dead on. It’s a film that examines the societal restraints of race, gender, sex and classism in ways that they still resonate today.
(Photo: Fox Searchlight)
16. Sideways (2004)
Crafting a brilliantly written dramedy around the concept of wine, Alexander Payne scored a tasty result with “Sideways.” The film is as hilarious as it is touching, anchored by Paul Giamatti’s character, who brings an unprecedented level of humanity to his role.
15. There Will Be Blood (2007)
The first part of Paul Thomas Anderson’s “There Will Be Blood” functions, in a way, as a silent film. But the magnitude of what you’re watching never escapes you. The cinematography is out of this world, while Daniel Day Lewis gives an acting performance that’s beyond staggering. Altogether, “There Will Be Blood” functions like Anderson’s own modern day “Citizen Kane.”
(Photo: Artisan Entertainment)
14. Requiem for a Dream (2000)
The power of Darren Aronofsky’s “Requiem for a Dream” makes itself known in so many different ways. There’s the acting (led by an Oscar-nominated Ellen Burstyn). There are the visuals, as Aronofsky puts his full mind-bending arsenal on display. There’s the haunting score and the overall ambition of a director to make a drug film that will scare the living daylights out of you.
13. The Wolf of Wall Street (2013)
Upon its release, Martin Scorsese’s “The Wolf of Wall Street” felt like a bloated body of work that could have been trimmed. Upon repeat viewings, you don’t want to miss a second. It’s a film about the American economy and greed that’s as entertaining as it is eye-popping. And it’s all anchored by Leonardo DiCaprio in what might be the greatest performance of his career.
(Photo: Fox Searchlight)
12. 12 Years a Slave (2013)
“12 Years a Slave” is an agonizing movie, whose pain can be felt even after its antagonist escapes captivity. The performances of Michael Fassbender and Lupita Nyong’o are of the highest caliber. But the true power of the film lies in Chiwetel Ejiofor’s unrelenting eyes. It’s a movie of hope and heartache coexisting in a cruel world.
(Photo: Focus Features)
11. Brokeback Mountain (2005)
The backbone of “Brokeback Mountain” isn’t the stunning cinematography or its groundbreaking status as a romantic drama featuring two of Hollywood’s biggest male stars. It’s the performance of its cast, led by Heath Ledger, who holds his face like a tightly clenched fist, until its heartbreaking ending that stays with you.
(Photo: Columbia Pictures)
10. The Social Network (2010)
It’s probably the ultimate movie for Millennials – a sensationalized story about the creation of Facebook. David Fincher’s “The Social Network,” written by Aaron Sorkin, isn’t just about new technology. It’s about how struggles with loneliness and longing for friendship can drive people to the fine line that exists between genius and self-destruction.
(Photo: Warner Bros.)
9. Inception (2010)
Christopher Nolan’s “Inception” is one of the most intricate films you’ll see, centered on the idea that you can alter someone’s reality while inside their dreams. It comes with a mesmerizing score, solid performances and amazing visuals in a film that seems to never stop moving.
8. City of God (2002)
If you’ve never “City of God,” brace yourself for a crime drama of epic proportions. The film takes on the journey of a group of young people trying to survive and, for some, thrive in the drug land of Rio de Janeiro. It’s a well-polished film that at times, feels almost too real to believe.
(Photo: Warner Bros.)
7. The Departed (2006)
Martin Scorsese finally earned his Academy Award for Best Picture with “The Departed,” an acting showcase where many of the actors deliver career best performances. “The Departed” is a remake of the Hong Kong film “Infernal Affairs” (which could have easily be on this list), but gives the story a charismatic vibe that redefines the concept of good and bad.
(Photo: Focus Features)
6. Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind (2004)
Love is something that can’t be controlled. That’s the message writer Charlie Kaufman delivers with “Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind,” a mesmerizing love story for the ages. Director Michel Gondry’s surrounds Kaufman’s story with visuals to marvel at, while Jim Carrey (never better) and Kate Winslet make you feel every ounce of their angst. Love isn’t meant to be perfect and battling it is futile. I can’t think of anything about this film I don’t like about it.
(Photo: Universial Pictures)
5. Children of Men (2006)
Generally, films that touch on the end of the world tend to be sensationalized. But Alfonso Cuaron’s amazing “Children of Men” accomplished something far more daring. He crafted a movie and a scenario (where babies have become extinct) that could terrifyingly happen. It’s about the struggle for humanity to live on, a battle you find yourself swept up in.
4. No Country for Old Men (2007)
Based on a great novel by Cormac McCarthy, “No Country for Old Men” is the Coen Brothers’ take on man’s desire to overcome his destiny. Set in 1980 Texas, the movie’s structural simplicities make way for thrilling performances, the best of which comes from Javier Bardem who basically plays the devil.
(Photo: New Line Cinema)
3. The Lord of the Rings Trilogy (2001-2003)
Take your pick as to which is the best “The Lord of the Rings” film. Separate, each film would make its way onto this list. But together, they make for one of the greatest film epics in history. The story was already timeless before Peter Jackson got his hands on it. But the ambition visual production added an oomph that would create an escape for millions of moviegoers.
(Photo: Warner Bros.)
2. The Dark Knight (2008)
The centerpiece of Christopher Nolan’s “Dark Knight Trilogy” is more than just a superhero movie. In its most basic sense, “The Dark Knight” is about good versus evil. But it’s also about one man reaching his limits and being forced to trust in the people he’s chosen to protect. Mixed within that is arguably the best acting performance in two decades with Heath Ledger’s incomparable Joker.
1. Moonlight (2016)
Sometimes movies can catch you off guard and be so subtly powerful they leave you sitting there for minutes after trying to comprehend the emotions you’re feeling. “Moonlight” is one of those movies. The performances are flawless. But what stands out most about the coming of age tale that examines sexual identity and cultural understanding is that it’s a stunning piece of African American filmmaking where racism isn’t the centerpiece. It’s a all-time great and critically acclaimed movie that just so happens to be about black characters.