Review: A Star is Born

Starring Bradley Cooper and Lady Gaga

Review: The Hate U Give

Starring Amandla Stenberg

Review: Venom

Starring Tom Hardy, Michelle Williams, and Riz Ahmed

Review: Private Life

Starring Kathryn Hahn and Paul Giamatti

Review: The Oath

Written, directed, and starring Ike Barinholtz

10/15/2018

HBO's 'Watchmen' Debuts A Mysterious Image Of A Remixed Character


Hmmm..there's something about that bright yellow.  HBO is still a long ways off from debuting Damon Lindelof's "remixed" Watchmen series, but the mystery can officially begin thanks to the show's official Instagram account, which has offered a first glimpse at one of the new characters. Or perhaps a different version of a familiar one?

There isn't much context here other than the caption "Who Watches the Watchmen?" seen in Alan Moore and Dave Gibbons' classic graphic novel. It looks to be a police officer of some kind, sporting a bright yellow mask that completely obscures the face, so it's impossible to tell which of the cast is under it. Also take note of the Instagram account's logo, which is reminiscent of the blood-spattered Comedian logo we know, but not quite.

Something tells me this character is no enforcer of the law, at least not in any official capacity. And the color scheme, so much a part of the comic, suggests this might be a different take on a character we know. We shall see.

Watchmen stars Regina King, Jeremy Irons, Tim Blake Nelson, Louis Gossett Jr., and Don Johnson, and is expected to hit HBO next year.




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'Bodyguard' Trailer: Richard Madden Leads Netflix's Political Thriller Series


This timing can't be a coincidence, can it? With Richard Madden's name on everybody's mind thanks to rumors he might be the next James Bond, suddenly there arrives a new trailer for his upcoming Netflix series, Bodyguard. I don't believe in coincidences, so somebody in the Netflix marketing department is on the freakin' ball.

Not a remake of the Kevin Costner/Whitney Houston flick your mom loved in the '80s, this Bodyguard stars Madden as David Budd, an ex-soldier and former police officer hired to protect the Home Secretary (Keeley Hawes) whose politics he opposes. The six-episode series has already aired in the U.K, and Madden has received some pretty good notices for it. This is his latest foray into the streaming service after playing the sexy DJ chased around by Gillian Anderson in Ibiza.

Bodyguard hits Netflix on October 24th.

'The Possession Of Hannah Grace' Trailer: Working In A Morgue Can Be Bad For Your Health


In horror movies it's never a good idea to be the only one in a morgue full of dead bodies, especially if you just had some fresh intake. Something awful is bound to happen, and it certainly does to Pretty Little Liars star Shay Mitchell in The Possession of Hannah Grace, a rather unusual exorcism horror movie.

Mitchell plays Megan Reed, working the unfortunate graveyard shift at the city morgue. Based on the trailer it's clear she's got some past issues she hopes to get beyond, but instead she'll have to deal with the morgue's latest arrival, a mutilated young woman named Hannah who died in the middle of an exorcism. Locked inside with the body Megan starts to believe the demon that possessed Hannah is out to get her next.

The film is directed by Diederik Van Rooijen and looks like a spiritual successor to The Autopsy of Jane Doe, but we'll have to wait and see if it achieves the same level of cult status.  The Possession of Hannah Grace hits theaters on November 30th.

'Jonathan' Trailer: Ansel Elgort Experiences A Unique Case Of Sibling Rivalry


How do you and your siblings get along? No doubt there is at least some small amount of rivalry between you, because that's just normal. But what happens when you and your rival sibling share the same body? That's the intriguing premise of the new sci-fi film Jonathan, which features twice the Ansel Elgort for one low price.

The Baby Driver star pulls double-duty as Jonathan and his brother, who lead very different lives. Very different lives that happen to be in the same body.  In the morning, one brother leads a normal, every life; in the evening the other, more exciting brother takes over. They exist in shifts, basically, but that fragile balance can't last forever. Assassination Nation's Suki Waterhouse co-stars as the love interest of the nocturnal bro, with Patricia Clarkson and Matt Bomer also on board.

Bill Oliver directed and co-wrote Jonathan, which hits theaters and VOD on November 16th.

'Game Of Thrones' Star Richard Madden Reportedly To Be The Next James Bond


How seriously should we take Bond replacement rumors at this stage? Probably not very seriously, considering there hasn't been a single frame shot of Bond 25, the last one to star Daniel Craig. But that hasn't stopped months, no years, of speculation about who might take over when he's gone. Well, now you can add one more to this list: Game of Thrones actor Richard Madden.

The report comes from the Daily Mail, who say Madden is at the top of Bond producers Barbara Broccoli's list for the 007 role.  While this isn't much, the story does say Madden will be offered the job in the coming days, so if nothing happens we know this story was for shit. Madden has been off Game of Thrones for a few seasons now (his final episode one of the show's most notorious), and while he's done a few things here and there nothing quite on that level, and certainly nothing on par with James Bond. If he gets this it would be huge.

Personally, I don't see it happening, but then I never would've predicted the guy from Layer Cake would be 007, either. So what do I know?

‘Supergirl’ Season 4 Premiere: “American Alien”




Supergirl returns for a 4th season, and it’s not hiding any of its political punches!

After Supergirl was able to stop the World Killers from destroying Earth at the end of last season, everything’s looking better for Kara.  With her cousin off-world, she’s taking on the mantle of being earth’s only Kryptonian and ergo, the protector of the planet.  After a brief montage, we see that she’s getting good at it as she goes all over the world helping solve problems only Supergirl does, but she also is managing to excel as a reporter as well.  Like she says to the audience, everything seems to be going in her way.  Of course, we know that means this blissful period won’t last long…..

Everyone else is also moving forward in their lives.  Alex is now the head of the DEO.  While she is having some problems with Brainiac 5 (as he really doesn’t have the best social skills), she’s running a tight ship now that J'onn has left and placed her in charge.  James is still the CEO of CatCo, but with him outing himself as the vigilante Guardian, it’s any day now that the National City District Attorney will charge him.  Speaking of J'onn, he seems to have found a new calling as he is a part of a support group for aliens are everyone’s favorite watering hole.  No longer fighting, he’s taking a pacifist role in trying to help out his fellow “outsiders.”


One of the aliens in J'onn’s support group happens to be a world-famous scientist.  However, when his lab gets attacked and an EMP stolen, the attackers surgically take his horns off his arm.  While it may seem like they were removed as a means of obtaining his biometrics to break into the vault containing the device, some aliens are now thinking this is a hate crime.  J'onn stresses to Kara the problem, but she blows it off as him looking for a problem that doesn’t exist.  She states that it’s just a robbery and nothing more.  This is Supergirl’s sly attempt to show white privilege (especially white female privilege) in action, and it’s no accident that the one complaining of the hate crime that falls on deaf ears is taking the form of a black man.  Kara fails to stop the attackers as they have some serious hardware that even stops her.  At the moment, she’s taking this as a robbery and not something bigger than what it is.

Lena Luthor is concerned about her boyfriend James being brought up on charges.  As a result, she pays a visit to her mother where she finds out a family secret about a money launderer.  Lena decides to pull a fast one on her mother and record her telling Lena all about it.  This is enough evidence for her to go to the District Attorney with a new big fish to catch under the notion that James will be off limits.  It shows that for all the good Lena has done to distance herself from the Luthor name, she can play dirty just like her mother and brother can.  James none the wiser, thinks everything worked out and Lena doesn’t tell him of her role in it.  However the DA sorta reneges and says that James will not be charged for past crimes, but if he continues as Guardian, he will be arrested.


At CatCo, Kara meets Nia, the newest reporter to join the company.  Even though Nia has a degree that could warrant her pretty much any job she wants, she has a passion for fashion and wants to make her mark at CatCo.  Unfortunately, she has a fear of stepping up.  When another reporter wants to take on writing about fashion and beats her to the punch, she doesn’t assert herself, much to Kara’s disappointment.  Kara then gives her a pep talk about moving past your fear.  While Nia’s role in the season premiere was short, expect more from her.  In the comics, she was known as Dreamer, an alien with precognitive abilities.  Given that the actress playing her is Nicole Maines, a transgender actress (and Supergirl doesn’t shy away from politics), expect that to also play a role in future episodes.


Speaking of Supergirl and politics, this entire episode was pretty much a ham-fisted allegory for our current political climate.  There’s now a “humans-first” type of movement going on in America.  Blaming aliens for the loss of jobs, and any other reasons, there’s a new form of toxic nationalism going on.  It pretty much mirror’s the right’s rationale against undocumented immigrants in our current world.  There are attacks on places aliens frequent and when Kara chases down the two who stole the EMP, she discovers countless internet chats that a pretty much an alt-right or 4chan wet dream.  Realizing she was wrong, she apologizes to J'onn and asks him for assistance in stopping them, something he surprisingly refuses.

Thanks to some sleuthing by Brainiac-5, it’s discovered that the culprits are going to attack President Marsdin while she is at Camp David for an alien amnesty summit with many alien leaders.  The two carry out the attack, but are foiled by Kara.  However, they manage to try and shoot the president, who we all remember is an alien in disguise and capture it on film.  This gives the group the PR win they need.  Towards the end of the episode, we get to meet our potential big bad Agent Liberty the leader of the human’s first hate group the Children of Liberty.

The episode ends in Kasnia (a DC Universes’ fictitious Russian proxy country) where under a bridge Supergirl previously saved, there’s another version of Kara punching through a mountain underground under the watchful eye of troops.  It looks like Supergirl is setting up a “Red Son” storyline.  Comic fans know that Red Son was a storyline that did a “what if” Superman was raised in Russia instead of Kansas and becomes an agent of the Soviet Empire.  Expect some sort of confrontation down the line.

Next week, Agent Liberty takes the fight to Supergirl.


'Ozark' Creator To Direct Liam Neeson In Action Thriller 'Honest Thief'


Netflix has found one of their great success stories with Ozark, the drug thriller series co-created by Mark Williams and led by Jason Bateman. The show was recently renewed for a third season, and now Williams has another reason to celebrate. He'll direct Liam Neeson and 13 Reasons Why's Kate Walsh in action thriller Honest Thief.

Directed by Williams and written by Steven Allrich (The Canyon), Honest Thief stars Neeson as a bank robber who attempts to turn himself because he's fallen in love with an employee at the storage facility where his stolen loot is stashed. Complications arise when a corrupt federal agent takes charge of his case.

Filming begins in November. Next up for Neeson is a role in Steve McQueen's Widows opposite Viola Davis, Colin Farrell, and more. [Variety]

Benedict Wong Teases 'Avengers 4' Return And 'Doctor Strange' Sequel's Start Date


Wong played a big role in the first half of Avengers: Infinity War, before taking leave before the big battles really began. However it seems he managed to not get turned into dust like Doctor Strange did, and will be around to help take on Thanos in Avengers 4.

Speaking at a fan convention in Vancouver, Benedict Wong confirmed that he's shot some scenes for the upcoming Avengers sequel. Presumably these are real scenes and not fake ones meant to confuse the hovering press.  It's also possible Wong is seen in flashback or is just somebody else needing to be saved. Marvel has really done an extraordinary job keeping so much of the story secret considering how many eyes were on every phase of the shoot.

Wong also seems to think a Doctor Strange sequel is approaching faster than previously thought. While a spring start had been talked about before, the actor says he thinks it will kick off at the end of this year. That's roughly around the time booked for Guardians of the Galaxy 3 before it got shelved, and if true this suggests Marvel is reshuffling the decks considerably.  It would also make sense to move up Doctor Strange 2 if the character is to take a more prominent future role, as many expect him to.

For now, look for Wong and Doctor Strange to appear in Avengers 4 (just give us the title already!) in May 2019.

10/14/2018

DC Readers: Attend A Free Early Screening Of 'Can You Ever Forgive Me?' Starring Melissa McCarthy


We're happy to offer our DC readers the chance to attend one of two free advance screenings of Can You Ever Forgive Me?, starring Melissa McCarthy.

SYNOPSIS: In CAN YOU EVER FORGIVE ME?, Melissa McCarthy stars as Lee Israel, the best-selling celebrity biographer (and cat lover) who made her living in the 1970’s and 80’s profiling the likes of Katharine Hepburn, Tallulah Bankhead, Estée Lauder and journalist Dorothy Kilgallen.  When Lee found herself unable to get published because she had fallen out of step with the marketplace, she turned her art form to deception, abetted by her loyal friend Jack (Richard E. Grant).

We have two screening options for you to choose from. If you'd like to attend on Tuesday, October 16th at 7:00pm at Regal Majestic in Silver Spring, go to the Fox Searchlight ticketing site here.

If you prefer the Wednesday, October 24th, 7:00pm screening at AMC Tysons Corner, go to the Fox Searchlight site here.

Please remember that having passes does not guarantee entry as all screenings are first come first served. You will need to arrive early to assure receiving a seat. Enjoy the show!

Can You Ever Forgive Me? opens October 26th.

John Carpenter's Pissed About Dwayne Johnson's 'Big Trouble In Little China' Sequel


John Carpenter's Big Trouble in Little China is a beloved cult favorite now, but when it opened in 1986 the film was a dud. Carpenter and star Kurt Russell weren't able to maximize on the success of their previous collaborations, Escape from New York and The Thing, which came as a little bit of a surprise. When I was a kid I didn't know what a flop movie was, so I think I always expected there would be a sequel to the film. That obviously never materialized back then, but we're getting one now starring Dwayne Johnson. Unfortunately, it doesn't sound like Carpenter has much to do with it, and certainly he isn't pleased.

Asked about the film by CinemaBlend, Carpenter made it clear that he's pretty angry this sequel is happening without his involvement...

“They want a movie with Dwayne Johnson. That’s what they want. So they just picked that title. They don’t give a shit about me and my movie. That movie wasn’t a success."

Clearly he's pissed, not necessarily that it's happening at all, but that it's happening in such a generic fashion. They wanted to make a movie with Dwayne Johnson and so they just dropped him into it whether he makes sense or not. To be fair, it HAS made sense financially for practically every franchise he's been added to. He didn't earn the nickname "Franchise Viagra" for nothing. So while I don't think there's a big enough audience to justify a Big Trouble in Little China sequel in general, adding Johnson to the mix should be more than worth it.