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The long-awaited first teaser trailer for Star Wars: The Last Jedi has arrived and ready for mass consumption. Continue reading
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Known for such films as Coraline, ParaNorman, and last year’s The Boxtrolls, the stop-motion animation studio, LAIKA, returns in 2016 to bring audiences Kubo and the Two Strings. The first, stunning teaser is wildly different from anything we’ve seen from the Oscar nominated animators before. Taking a more Eastern approach to their art direction, influenced by Japanese culture, this could be LAIKA’s boldest film to date.
Upon watching the first seconds of this teaser I was blown away. According to the official production announcement from 2014, Kubo and the Two Strings “is being brought to life at LAIKA via the company’s innovative 3D stop-motion and CG hybrid technique.” The opening sequence in the ocean is breathtakingly impressive and the environments are stunning. The way the movie positions itself with its art style, action, and visual queues, it almost feels like a video game.
Kubo and the Two Strings hosts a bevy of big name actors to voice its characters. Game of Thrones‘ Art Parkinson, who plays Rickon Stark, voices the titular Kubo. At his side are George Takei as Hosato, Cary-Hiroyuki Tagawa as Hashi, Brenda Vaccaro as Kamekichi, Rooney Mara as the evil twin Sisters, Charlize Theron as Monkey, Matthew McConaughey as Beetle, and Ralph Fiennes as the Moon King.
I like Coraline, but ParaNorman didn’t impress me beyond its ending and The Boxtrolls didn’t work for me at all. The mix of Japanese culture and stop-motion animation is something I can’t say I’ve seen before, and it truly interests me. I can safely say Kubo and the Two Strings is high up on my list of most anticipated films of 2016.
- From the origami birds to the underwater eyeball creatures, I’m amazed by everything.
- The music perfectly sets up the tone of this film.
- Making photo realistic water in film and video games is wonderful, but the ocean animation here looks beautiful.
- Some of the animation reminds me of James and the Giant Peach.
- Before reading the plot synopsis, I had thought Kubo was a girl. I think it would be more interesting story if Kubo was a girl and not a boy.
- It would also be awesome if LAIKA intended this film to be voiced over in Japanese first then dubbed in English.
Click on the teaser poster below to enlarge:
Here’s the official plot synopsis for Kubo and the Two Strings, courtesy of Focus Features:
Kubo and the Two Strings is an epic action-adventure set in a fantastical Japan from acclaimed animation studio LAIKA. Clever, kindhearted Kubo ekes out a humble living, telling stories to the people of his seaside town including Hosato, Hashi and Kamekichi. But his relatively quiet existence is shattered when he accidentally summons a spirit from his past which storms down from the heavens to enforce an age-old vendetta. Now on the run, Kubo joins forces with Monkey and Beetle, and sets out on a thrilling quest to save his family and solve the mystery of his fallen father, the greatest samurai warrior the world has ever known. With the help of his shamisen – a magical musical instrument – Kubo must battle gods and monsters, including the vengeful Moon King and the evil twin Sisters to unlock the secret of his legacy, reunite his family and fulfill his heroic destiny.
Directed by Travis Knight, Kubo and the Two Strings is set for release on August 19, 2016.
Source: Focus Features
The final chapter of the X-Men: First Class saga is coming to a close with the first trailer for X-Men: Apocalypse. As it has been foretold by writer/producer Simon Kinberg, this will supposedly be the last time we may see the recent portrayals of Magneto (Michael Fassbender), Mystique (Jennifer Lawrence), Beast (Nicholas Hoult), and Professor X (James McAvoy) in action. But fear not, because this teaser is packed full of classic mutants that could potentially take over the franchise.
It may be hard to believe a mutant world without Charles Xavier, but the X-Men franchise has survived without the professor before – in the comics and the ’90s animated series. With how unstable the franchise had become after X-Men: The Last Stand and X-Men Origins: Wolverine, First Class and Days of Future Past have done an incredible job bringing the franchise back into the forefront of superhero films.
X-Men: Apocalypse hosts a slew of new faces playing familiar characters, including Scott Summers aka Cyclops (Tye Sheridan), Jean Grey (Sophie Turner), Ororo Munro aka Storm (Alexandra Shipp), Warren Worthington III aka Angel (Ben Hardy), and Kurt Wagner aka Nightcrawler (Kodi Smit-McPhee); all of whom could take on the mantle of the next group of mutants to hold down the franchise. There are also two new additions Marvel fans will be pleased to see join the X-Men Cinematic Universe such as Jubilation Lee aka Jubilee (Lana Condor) and Elizabeth “Betsy” Braddock aka Psylocke (Olivia Munn). Evan Peters will also be returning as Pietro Maximoff aka Quicksilver.
As for the trailer itself, Apocalypse has always been one of the greatest threats to the X-Men and I am mostly excited by everything I have seen here. I’m curious to see how his world domination plans will affect our graduating First Class heroes and how their chapter will come to a close. Oscar Isaac (Ex Machina; Star Wars: The Force Awakens; Inside Llewyn Davis) is one of the best, working actors right now, but something has me worried about his role as Apocalypse. The makeup and outfit looks goofy as hell and super villain portrayals in film have never been that well regarded. I am keeping an open mind and I trust Bryan Singer with his direction.
- I’m concerned Sophie Turner’s American accent will be awkward since we know her best from Game of Thrones.
- Tye Sheridan looks like the perfect Scott Summers.
- Speaking of which, I wonder how they’ll address his relationship to his brother, Alex Summers aka Havok (Lucas Till).
- The new X-Men uniforms look pretty neat. It’s kind of funny how they’re more of an upgrade and sleeker than Singer’s first X-Men movie.
- Magneto looks like a wandering lumberjack. So angsty.
- Nightcrawler looks far better than his first look reveal in Entertainment Weekly.
- It will be interesting to see how they bring Moira MacTaggert (Rose Byrne) back after Xavier wiped her mind.
- What are the odds that Wolverine appears?
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Here’s the motion poster that was released yesterday to tease the trailer:
Here’s the official plot synopsis for X-Men: Apocalypse, courtesy of 20th Century Fox:
Since the dawn of civilization, he was worshiped as a god. Apocalypse, the first and most powerful mutant from Marvel’s X-Men universe, amassed the powers of many other mutants, becoming immortal and invincible. Upon awakening after thousands of years, he is disillusioned with the world as he finds it and recruits a team of powerful mutants, including a disheartened Magneto, to cleanse mankind and create a new world order, over which he will reign. As the fate of the Earth hangs in the balance, Raven with the help of Professor X must lead a team of young X-Men to stop their greatest nemesis and save mankind from complete destruction.
Directed by Bryan Singer, X-Men: Apocalypse. The film is set to release on May 27, 2016.
Source: 20th Century Fox
If there is one thing I could have done without in my life it would be the continuation of the Michael Bay produced TMNT reboot. I would have been completely happy. That was until I saw the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Out of the Shadows teaser trailer. While 2014’s Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles reboot had a grittier edge that lacked any kind of resemblance to the franchise, the Out of the Shadows teaser has the exact opposite feel to it.
TMNT is suppose to be the tubular adventures of four turtle brothers and their parental rat sensei who battle bizarre creature villains while navigating adolescence. Although the writers are the same, perhaps we can give thanks to the new director Dave Green (Earth to Echo). The Out of the Shadows teaser is spastic and drops very few hints about the plot, but it delivers more of that beloved TMNT personality in just 140 seconds than what the entire run time of the reboot did.
Here we find the Shredder (now played by Brian Tee) acting his revenge on the turtles by recruiting two thugs Bebop (Gary Anthony Williams) and Rocksteady (Stephen Farrelly aka Sheamus from WWE) that become mutants of their own thanks to Baxter Stockman (Tyler Perry), who fans know will become a mutant himself later on. Per usual, Channel 4 news reporter April O’Neil (Megan Fox) finds herself in trouble and a new hero hockey stick wielding hero, Casey Jones (Stephen Amell), arrives on the scene to save day.
There’s also flashes of alien spaceships coming from out of the sky near the end of the teaser. It has been rumored that Out of the Shadows could delve into Dimension X territory, which is the homeworld to Krang, the little anthropomorphic brain that sits inside the stomach of a mech suit he built while residing in the fearsome Technodrome – I can’t make this stuff up if I tried.
Now all of this may sound completely bonkers and stuffed to the brim like Spider-Man 3, but for some reason I find this to be a welcome change compared to that pile of garbage reboot – the only notable scene in the movie is the elevator beatbox session.
I grew up watching the Saturday morning Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles cartoon in the ’90s, owning all of the licensed toys, bed sheets, and more. The first two films were also wildly enjoyable to me as a young lad – less so as an adult, but the nostalgia remains. And of course, Turtles in Time is arguably one of the best arcade side-scrollers ever created. All of this wackiness in the teaser gives me hope that the franchise can rise up from the ashes in which director Jonathan Liebesman helped lay the foundation for.
- Bebop and Rocksteady look a little rough, but I’m sure the effects will be touched up before the film’s release.
- There seems to be some kind of macguffin the turtles are protecting before they begin their fight against Bebop and Rocksteady.
- Stephen Amell looks kind of out of place since the character Casey Jones most notably has long brown hair. Running away on rollerblades doesn’t help his case either.
- Those alien spaceships look like rejected Transformers since Paramount distributes that property too.
- I think Will Arnett is hilarious, but I am not a fan of his character in these movies.
- Where is Whoopi??
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Directed by Dave Green, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Out of the Shadows stars Megan Fox, Stephen Amell, Will Arnett, William Fichtner, Brian Tee, Tyler Perry, Brittany Ishibashi, Laura Linney, Alan Ritchson, Noel Fisher, Jeremy Howard, Johnny Knoxville, Pete Ploszek, Tony Shalhoub, Danny Woodburn, Gary Anthony Williams, and Stephen Farrelly. This film is set to arrive in theaters on June 3, 2016.
Source: TMNT Official YouTube Channel
I’ll give you a second to clean yourself off after watching the new Star Wars: The Force Awakens trailer a few dozen times. Thankfully, after it’s premiere during the San Francisco Giants vs. Philadelphia Eagles game during Monday Night Football, the trailer arrived online in beautiful HD before any rebel scum could leak a lesser quality version.
Who are you? What are you fighting for? Is following in the footsteps of a Sith Lord whom I’ve never met a solid life plan? Star Wars: The Force Awakens is asking the big existential questions. While the original Star Wars trilogy told a tale of good versus evil, and the prequel trilogy a more politically driven love story, it would appear that our heroes in the start of this new chapter of the most epic space opera are seeking purpose in a galaxy thrown into chaos.
This new Star Wars: The Force Awakens trailer doesn’t give away many details about the plot, but rather the film sells itself on the direction of its main characters. Rey (Daisy Ridley) and Finn (John Boyega) come across as folks who have lost their way, seeking something greater than themselves. And it seems as though they’ll find what they’re looking for after they meet an aged Han Solo (Harrison Ford).
I’m loving the shades of depth emitted from our protagonists, the aerial battle sequences look phenomenal, and the sweeping score by John Williams is immensely emotional, but somehow I remain cautiously optimistic. I think this trailer does everything right to bring Star Wars back into the good graces of every fanboy and girl who was burned by the prequels, I just can’t put my guard down quite yet.
We’re led to believe that Kylo Ren (Adam Driver) is hoping to carry out Darth Vader’s wishes, but something tells me the editing in the trailer is misleading and he may be talking to someone else – not the extra crispy helmet of the once great Sith Lord. We also have no idea where Luke Skywalker (Mark Hamill) is in all of this. And then there’s a ton of cast members who have yet to be revealed, such as Domhnall Gleeson or Andy Serkis.
The pace at which they are rolling out details is fantastic. The less the better, but just enough to appease my interest. I’ve already bought my ticket for a true IMAX 3D experience, which went on sale earlier today. Now all that’s left is the waiting game.
What’s interesting about the promotion of this trailer leading up to its release is that the teasers had footage not shown in the final cut. In the first teaser below there is a stoic shot of Oscar Isaac’s Poe and in the second is Daisy Ridley’s Rey looking up at fighters flying across the sky.
Here’s the official theatrical movie poster that released yesterday with the teasers (click on the image to enlarge):
That’s no moon. Would The First Order really attempt a third time to make a planet killer after two failed goes at it? Perhaps J.J. Abrams is obsessed with spacecrafts that can blow up planets? Maybe The Rebel Alliance built this one and are giving The First Order a taste of their own medicine? Where’s Luke in the poster? What’s that little creature standing in between R2-D2 and BB-8? Is it symbolic that Kylo Ren and Rey’s weapons mirror each other? Are they brother and sister?
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Directed by J.J. Abrams from a screenplay by Lawrence Kasdan and Abrams, Star Wars: The Force Awakens stars John Boyega, Daisy Ridley, Oscar Isaac, Adam Driver, Andy Serkis, Lupita Nyong’o, Gwendoline Christie, Crystal Clarke, Pip Andersen, Domhnall Gleeson, and Max von Sydow. They will join the original stars of the saga, Harrison Ford as Han Solo, Carrie Fisher as Leia Organa [Solo?] Mark Hamill as Luke Skywalker, Anthony Daniels as C-3PO, Peter Mayhew as Chewbacca, and Kenny Baker as R2-D2. The film is set to release on December 18, 2015.
Source: StarWars YouTube
Whether you’re a fan of The Hunger Games series or not, you have to admit that the mockingjay symbol will forever be engrained in the annals of pop culture for generations to come. Capitalizing on this opportunity, the marketing team behind The Hunger Games: Mockingjay – Part 2 have utilized its full potential in the latest revolutionary stand against President Snow and The Capitol.
Bearing similarities to Mockingjay – Part 1’s teaser trailer, we now see the porcelain white statue of President Snow blown to bits with the mockingjay symbol painted on the wall behind it. In the corner a little URL is displayed, revolution.pn, which asks you to “Take a Stand” against the Capitol. Here’s the official Tweet where the poster originated:
And here’s a larger picture that you can click to enlarge:
Earlier this March, the first teaser trailer for Mockingjay – Part 2 was unleashed. Also taking advantage of the iconic mockingjay symbol, we watch it evolve through its many forms from the franchise. It’s a pretty well conceived teaser as it takes lines of dialogue from each previous entry to build anticipation for the explosive final form. Check it out:
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And of course, here are two previous teaser posters that have been released:
Here is the official plot synopsis for The Hunger Games: Mockingjay – Part 2, courtesy of Lionsgate:
With the nation of Panem in a full scale war, Katniss confronts President Snow [Donald Sutherland] in the final showdown. Teamed with a group of her closest friends – including Gale [Liam Hemsworth], Finnick [Sam Claflin] and Peeta [Josh Hutcherson] – Katniss goes off on a mission with the unit from District 13 as they risk their lives to liberate the citizens of Panem, and stage an assassination attempt on President Snow who has become increasingly obsessed with destroying her. The mortal traps, enemies, and moral choices that await Katniss will challenge her more than any arena she faced in The Hunger Games.
Directed by Francis Lawrence, from a screenplay by Peter Craig and Danny Strong, The Hunger Games: Mockingjay – Part 2 stars Jennifer Lawrence, Josh Hutcherson, Liam Hemsworth, Woody Harrelson, Elizabeth Banks, Philip Seymour Hoffman, Jeffrey Wright, Willow Shields, Sam Claflin, Jena Malone, Stanley Tucci, Donald Sutherland, Julianne Moore, Mahershala Ali, Natalie Dormer, Wes Chatham, Elden Henson, and Evan Ross. The film is set to arrive in theaters on November 20, 2015.
Source: The Hunger Games Twitter