Friday, April 30, 2010

Freddie Vs. Jason Simply Bad

TRASH IN MY EYE No. 128 (of 2003) by Leroy Douresseaux

Freddy Vs. Jason (2003)
Running time: 97 minutes (1 hour, 37 minutes)
MPAA – R for pervasive strong horror violence/gore, gruesome images, sexuality, drug use and language
WRITERS: Damian Shannon and Mark Swift (based upon characters created by Wes Craven and Victor Miller)
PRODUCER: Sean S. Cunningham
EDITOR: Mark Stevens
COMPOSER: Graeme Revell


Starring: Robert Englund, Monica Keena, Ken Kirzinger, Kelly Rowland, Jason Ritter, James Callahan, Brendan Fletcher, and Lochlyn Munro

There’s little reason to say a whole lot about the long-awaited film showdown between two venerable movie maniacs, Freddy Krueger of the A Nightmare on Elm Street films and Jason Voorhees of the Friday the 13th films. It’s not simply a question of loving or hating it; when you get down to the bare bones, Freddy Vs. Jason is a truly awful film.

Freddy (Robert Englund) is in hell, fuming because he can’t get at the children of Elm Street in the town of Springwood. The parents and town leaders have found a few ways of keeping Freddy from the minds and dreams of their children. Thus, Freddy resurrects Jason (Ken Kirzinger) in hopes that Jason will scare up memories of Freddy. Of course, a plot, even a silly one, between two undead, homicidal maniacs is bound to fall apart. Jason gets out of hand, taking all the kills for himself, so Freddy decides to take him out of the equation.

Ronny Yu, who breathed new life into the Child’s Play series with Bride of Chucky, can’t do a damn thing for Freddy Vs. Jason, and I totally blame the manically lame script. Whereas Bride was perverse, funny, and perversely funny, Freddy is clunky, dull, and painfully dry. I think the writers, Damian Shannon and Mark Swift, instead of telling a good story, used too much of their script to shoehorn into this new film all the continuity and characteristics of the two original series. Because of this, more than half of Freddy Vs. Jason is without a story beyond what amounts to preflight commentary. There are quite a few good moments in the film, but everything else is, to speak plainly and crudely, crap.

Although the film as some imaginative effects, it’s not nearly as imaginative as the original Nightmare films, which all surely had smaller budgets than this film. Oh, it does have its moments, but it’s cursed by all the things that typically make horror movies bad: poor acting, weak plot and script, and lack of imagination. As far as horror films goes, most fans are willing to overlook all those problems if the damn thing is scary, and Freddy Vs. Jason isn’t, not even close. It’s just vile and violent, mostly a self-parody that exudes an air of cynicism about itself and the audience.

We, who loved the originals, were programmed to come, despite the misgivings we had from the moment we first heard of that “they” were making a Freddy Vs. Jason movie. Some of us just can’t resist, so we deserve the occasional cow patty thrown squarely in our mugs. The real tale will be told when we see how many of us come back for more, because in the end we deserve a much better film than this.

2 of 10

Thursday, April 29, 2010

New "Madea" Film Due April 2011

Press release from Lionsgate:


11TH Title in Hit Franchise is Planned For Easter 2011 Release

SANTA MONICA, CA, April 28, 2010 – LIONSGATE® (NYSE: LGF), the leading next generation studio, today announced that it has acquired the rights to the next film by writer/director/actor/producer Tyler Perry, TYLER PERRY’S MADEA’S BIG HAPPY FAMILY. The film will be the eleventh title in the studio’s hit Perry franchise. Perry will reprise his signature role as the straight-shooting Madea in the film, adapted from his new stage play “Madea’s Happy Family,” which is currently on tour in the U.S. The announcement was jointly made by Joe Drake, Lionsgate Chief Operating Office and Motion Picture Group President, and Mike Paseornek, Lionsgate President of Motion Picture Production

Lionsgate plans to release TYLER PERRY’S MADEA’S BIG HAPPY FAMILY on April 22, 2011.

Said Paseornek, “No one makes a big-screen entrance like Madea, and we’re very excited to welcome her back with TYLER PERRY’S MADEA’S BIG HAPPY FAMILY. To us, the title of the film couldn’t be more apt. Not only is Tyler a cherished member of the Lionsgate family; his unique brand of storytelling, humor, music and uplift has created a big happy family of moviegoers.”

Said Perry, “It’s very important to me to make movies that audiences can relate to, and I can’t think of a more relatable subject than family. I’m looking forward to bringing back Madea and the gang, and I’m glad to have Lionsgate with me for the journey.”

Perry’s tenth film for Lionsgate, FOR COLORED GIRLS WHO HAVE CONSIDERED SUICIDE WHEN THE RAINBOW IS ENUF, is scheduled to begin principal photography on June 1 in Atlanta. Perry directs his screen adaptation of the Obie Award-winning play by Ntozake Shange, and produces alongside Paul Hall. The film’s all-star cast includes Janet Jackson, Mariah Carey, Whoopi Goldberg, Phylicia Rashad, Jurnee Smollett, Kimberly Elise, Kerry Washington, Loretta Devine, Anika Noni Rose and Macy Gray. FOR COLORED GIRLS WHO HAVE CONSIDERED SUICIDE WHEN THE RAINBOW IS ENUF is scheduled for nationwide release on January 14, 2011.

Lionsgate (NYSE: LGF - News) is the leading next generation studio with a strong and diversified presence in the production and distribution of motion pictures, television programming, home entertainment, family entertainment, video-on-demand and digitally delivered content. The Company has built a strong television presence in production of prime time cable and broadcast network series, distribution and syndication of programming through Debmar-Mercury and an array of channel assets. Lionsgate currently has nearly 20 shows on 10 different networks spanning its prime time production, distribution and syndication businesses, including such critically-acclaimed hits as "Mad Men," "Weeds" and "Nurse Jackie" along with new series such as "Blue Mountain State" and the syndication successes "Tyler Perry's House of Payne," its spinoff "Meet The Browns" and "The Wendy Williams Show."

Its feature film business has generated such recent hits as TYLER PERRY’S WHY DID I GET MARRIED TOO?, the action film KICK-ASS, which opened at #1 at the North American box office and the critically-acclaimed PRECIOUS, which has garnered nearly $50 million at the North American box office and won two Academy Awards®. The Company’s home entertainment business has grown to more than 7% market share and is an industry leader in box office-to-DVD revenue conversion rate. Lionsgate handles a prestigious and prolific library of approximately 12,000 motion picture and television titles that is an important source of recurring revenue and serves as the foundation for the growth of the Company’s core businesses. The Lionsgate brand remains synonymous with original, daring, quality entertainment in markets around the world.

"The Rookie" is a Warm Family Sports Drama

TRASH IN MY EYE No. 37 (of 2002) by Leroy Douresseaux

The Rookie (2002)
Running time: 127 minutes (2 hours, 7 minutes)
DIRECTOR: John Lee Hancock
WRITER: Mike Rich
PRODUCERS: Mark Ciardi, Gordon Gray, and Mark Johnson
CINEMATOGRAPHER: John Schwartzman (director of photography)
EDITOR: Eric L. Beason
COMPOSER: Carter Burwell


Starring: Dennis Quaid, Rachel Griffiths, Jay Hernandez, Beth Grant, Angus T. Jones, and Brian Cox

Jimmy Morris’s (Dennis Quaid) perennially losing baseball team made a bet with him. If they won district, he would give his dream of being a Major League Baseball player another shot. Of course they won, and he did try again.

Director John Lee Hancock, a television director and screenwriter (A Perfect World), and writer Mike Rich (Finding Forrester) take the ideas of dreams and wish fulfillment and force them into the harsh light of day in the film, The Rookie. They remind the viewer that getting what you want isn’t always easy, but they have a bigger surprise in store for the viewer. It’s how this film deals with what happens when you get what you want.

In the case of Morris, he does make it to the big leagues (no big spoiler), and the majors is what he expected it to be. It’s just that he had a life and responsibilities before he got his dream job, and now the two conflict. He also discovers that being a big leaguer is a little more complicated than just “playing ball.” Director and screenwriter weave a story and create characters that seem real, because, not only is the story based on real events, the Morris struggle is universal – the desire to do what you want to do and the need to do what you have to do. This is the most intense and heaviest G-rated film in history. The creators still manage to make it fun and uplifting because they encourage us to identify with Morris’s quest.

Quaid gives a very good performance as man navigating his life, between the responsibilities and the dreams. It’s the performance that endears us to him, and Quaid sells us on a story that could have been very down beat. His every gesture, each look into his eyes and his face sells us that the reward at the end is worth the struggle along the way. In Quaid’s Morris, we see that there are rarely ever any pat resolutions to the problems we face in life.

The movie does seem a bit long, and some of the other characters (Morris’s wife and father) should have had more screen time, as they are obviously important to the growth of the character. There’s also a religious element in the film that’s clumsily underplayed. However, The Rookie does deliver both a message and fine entertainment. One other nice thing that it is subtly played throughout the film – regardless of how tough it is to achieve a dream and no matter how lonely one might feel, there are a lot of people around the dreamer supporting him along the way.

6 of 10

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

The Real "Brazil" Still Dazzles the Imagination

TRASH IN MY EYE No. 209 (of 2006) by Leroy Douresseaux

Brazil (1985) – Director’s Cut
Running time: 144 minutes (2 hours, 24 minutes)
DIRECTOR: Terry Gilliam
WRITERS: Terry Gilliam, Tom Stoppard, and Charles McKeown
PRODUCERS: Arnon Milchan
EDITOR: Julian Doyle
Academy Award nominee

SCI-FI/FANTASY/COMEDY with element of romance

Starring: Jonathan Pryce, Robert De Niro, Katherine Helmond, Ian Holm, Bob Hoskins, Michael Palin, Peter Vaughan, Kim Greist, Barbara Hicks, Charles McKeown, Kathryn Pogson, Shelia Reid, and Holly Gilliam

In a dystopian future, an inefficient bureaucracy controls society. Sam Lowry (Jonathan Pryce) is a daydreaming civil servant in the Department of Records (part of the Ministry of Information) who spots an error in a sea of paperwork – an innocent man was arrested and apparently killed because that error mistakenly identified him as a terrorist. In this future, the government expects citizens to pay fines and monetary penalties for their offences against society (the government) simply because even the most minor offenses generate so much paperwork. So the family of the innocent, now-deceased man is owed a refund for the money charged them for his “crimes.” While attempting to deliver the refund, Sam encounters Jill Layton (Kim Greist), and she looks exactly like the woman who is in all his daydreams. In the course of trying to catch up with Jill, Sam incorrectly becomes the object of government’s (via the Ministry) ire, as they assume him to be the mysterious, illegal serviceman and terrorist, Harry Tuttle (Robert De Niro).

Part social commentary, part outrageous fantasy, and black comedy, Terry Gilliam’s Brazil is one of the most dead-on socio-political satires in film history. It so accurately portrays both bureaucratic excess and negligence that it is both uncanny and uncannily timely, especially in light of recent events involving individual citizens being mistaken for terrorists because of their names, nationalities, and/or ethnicities. In fact, the Ministry of Information’s slogan, “Suspicion Breeds Confidence” defines the mentality of post-9/11 America.

The things that make this film excellent are the script and the actors’ ability to interpret its subtleties, while performing amidst the director’s indulgences. Terry Gilliam’s (Time Bandits) direction is obtuse, and he often seems more enamored with the dressings of his scenario rather than the narrative and allegorical aspects of it. Meanwhile, the cast seems better at bringing Gilliam’s vision to the screen that the director himself. This includes a brilliant performance by Jonathan Pryce as an exasperated everyman who doesn’t realize that he truly is different from everyone one else (kind, considerate, intelligent) and how much that endangers his life. The text (writing) is what makes Brazil a superb social commentary and an exceptional black comic satire, and luckily the cast acted as midwife to bring the script’s best aspects to screen even when Gilliam meanders.

8 of 10

1986 Academy Awards: 2 nominations: “Best Writing, Screenplay Written Directly for the Screen” (Terry Gilliam, Tom Stoppard, and Charles McKeown) and “Best Art Direction-Set Decoration” (Norman Garwood and Maggie Gray)

1986 BAFTA Awards: 2 wins” “Best Production Design (Norman Garwood) and “Best Special Visual Effects” (George Gibbs and Richard Conway)

Sunday, October 8, 2006

TokyoScope 3 is "War of the Giant Monsters"



VIZ Cinema Hosts Kaiju Shakedown! Godzillathon! And TokyoScope Talk Vol. 3 Features War Of The Giant Monsters Discussion And Prize Raffle Of New Gamera DVD

NEW PEOPLE and VIZ Cinema welcome the 3rd and latest installment of TokyoScope Talk – War of the Giant Monsters – on Friday, May 7th at 7:00pm. Join Otaku USA Editor-in-Chief Patrick Macias, Eiji Tsuburaya: Master of Monsters author August Ragone, and Japanese film critic Tomohiro Machiyama at the Bay Area’s hottest film venue for a fun and lively discussion on the “kaiju” (monster) movies featuring rare images and clips of Godzilla, Mothra, Gamera and other iconic creatures from classic Japanese sci-fi cinema. General admission tickets are $10.00.

VIZ Cinema invites Bay Area monster fans to a 5-day Kaiju Shakedown: Godzillathon!, running Saturday, May 8th thru Thursday, May 13th. Featured will be rare screenings of the Big G’s 4 most-loved films including Godzilla vs. Hedora (1971), Godzilla vs. Gigan (1972), Godzilla vs. Megalon (1973), and Godzilla vs. Mechagodzilla (1974). Details and screening times at:

Don’t miss a rare chance to see the beauty and enormity of Godzilla in stunning 35mm prints with English subtitles and a premium THX®-certified sound system! These events may sell-out. Ticket prices: General Admission: $10.00; Senior & Child: $8.00. Advance tickets on sale at:

TokyoScope Talk – War of the Giant Monsters will feature a special raffle giveaway of premium monster collectables including the brand new DVD release from Shout! Factory of Gamera: The Giant Monster (1965). The revered classic features the original Japanese version of the film presented with fresh English subtitles and anamorphic widescreen produced from an all-new HD master created from original vault elements.

VIZ Cinema is the nation’s first movie theatre devoted exclusively to Japanese film and anime. The 143-seat subterranean theatre is located in the basement of the NEW PEOPLE building and features plush seating, digital as well as 35mm projection, and a THX®-certified sound system.

NEW PEOPLE offers the latest films, art, fashion and retail brands from Japan and is the creative vision of the J-Pop Center Project and VIZ Pictures, a distributor and producer of Japanese live action film. Located at 1746 Post Street, the 20,000 square foot structure features a striking 3-floor transparent glass fa├žade that frames a fun and exotic new environment to engage the imagination into the 21st Century. A dedicated web site is also now available at:

Monday, April 26, 2010

Review: Date Night

TRASH IN MY EYE No. 26 (of 2010) by Leroy Douresseaux

Date Night (2010)
Running time: 88 minutes (1 hour, 28 minutes)
MPAA – PG-13 for sexual and crude content throughout, language, some violence and a drug reference
DIRECTOR: Shawn Levy
WRITER: Josh Klausner
PRODUCERS: Shawn Levy and Tom McNulty
EDITOR: Dean Zimmerman


Starring: Steve Carell, Tina Fey, Mark Wahlberg, Taraji P. Henson, Jimmi Simpson, Common, Bill Burr, William Fichtner, Kristen Wiig, Mark Ruffalo, James Franco, Mila Kunis, Ray Liotta, and J.B. Smoove

Steve Carell and Emmy-winner Tina Fey, two masters of some of the funniest and smartest television comedies in recent memory, come together for Date Night. Directed by Shawn Levy, Date Night follows a suburban New Jersey couple that comes to Manhattan for an out-of-the-ordinary night of fun and get the extraordinary night of their lives. This movie may not be Fey’s “30 Rock” or Carell’s “The Office” (their NBC television series), but it’s them and that’s enough.

They are sensible people Phil (Steve Carell) and Claire Foster (Tina Fey). This loving couple has two kids and a house in suburban New Jersey. Phil and Claire even have their weekly “date night,” a special night, in which they attempt to their dating years, as they dine on fish and potato wedges. Exhausted from their jobs and children, Phil and Claire rarely end their date nights with romance, or even sex. Then, they learn that a couple with whom they are friends is divorcing because the husband and wife started to feel like they were roommates and not really husband and wife.

On a whim, Phil decides a change of their regular date night plans in order to take Claire into Manhattan to the city’s hottest new restaurant, Claw. The Fosters, however, don't have reservations, and, once again on a whim, Phil decides to steal a no-show couple’s reservations. The Fosters are now the Tripplehorns, but the real Tripplehorns live dangerous lives, which the Fosters discover when two thugs, Armstrong (Jimmi Simpson) and Collins (Common), accost them over a flash drive the Tripplehorns apparently have. Soon, Phil and Claire are on the run, and their date night becomes a series of crazy adventures. Never mind saving their marriage; they have to save their lives.

Moviegoers who like Carell and Fey and want everything to turn out good for the Fosters will enjoy Date Night. Obviously, these acclaimed comic actors are the be-all, end-all of this movie. The material, however, is actually good, better than to be expected of Hollywood star vehicle. Screenwriter Josh Klausner has actually presented a rather snappy little scenario of a crime caper, although the way this caper ends is a bit clumsy and too pat. Director Shawn Levy, so adept at finding edge-of-the-seat thrills from practically any concept (see Night at the Museum), has made a film in Date Night that is funnier than most cop/buddy action comedies with action that is just as thrilling and fun to watch.

Steve Carell and Tina Fey don’t deliver their best work, but not for lack of effort. Carell’s wide-eyed mania, double-takes, and babbling are always just in time to strike the right note. Fey’s breezy performance is practically pitch-perfect for this film, an effortless turn from a comic actress flirting with genius. Date Night will likely make much of its audience want another date night with the team of Carell and Fey, but, in the meantime, we can enjoy this night again and again.

7 of 10

Monday, April 26, 2010

Sunday, April 25, 2010

Spike Lee's "Thriller" Movie Set to Go (A Negromancer Bits and Bites Blast)

According to Perez, Spike Lee will release a film entitled, "Brooklyn Loves You, Michael Jackson."  The movie is about Brooklyn residents who throw a concert as a tribute to Michael Jackson, he of Off the Wall, Thriller, Bad, Dangerous, Invincible, etc. The movie is apparently loosely based on a party Lee threw in Brooklyn last summer as a tribute to the late King of Pop. Samuel L. Jackson, who has starred in several of Lee's early films, has signed on to star in the movie.  The most recent film about Michael Jackson, This is It, was hit mere months after the singer's passing last summer.

Saturday, April 24, 2010

Review: "WATCHMEN" Movie is Too Big to Fail, But Fails Anyway

TRASH IN MY EYE No. 25 (of 2010) by Leroy Douresseaux

Watchmen (2009)
Running time: 162 minutes (2 hours, 42 minutes)
MPAA – R for strong graphic violence, sexuality, nudity and language
DIRECTOR: Zack Snyder
WRITERS: David Hayter and Alex Tse (based upon the comic book series by Alan Moore and Dave Gibbons)
PRODUCERS: Lawrence Gordon, Lloyd Levin, and Deborah Snyder
CINEMATOGRAPHER: Larry Fong (director of photography)
EDITOR: William Hoy


Starring: Malin Ackerman, Billy Crudup, Matthew Goode, Jackie Earle Haley, Jeffrey Dean Morgan, Patrick Wilson, Carla Gugino, Matt Frewer, Stephen McHattie, Laura Mennell, and William Taylor

Watchmen was a 12-issue limited comic book series written by Alan Moore (V for Vendetta) and drawn by Dave Gibbons. Published over 1986 and 1987, DC Comics eventually collected the series into a single volume trade paperback. Afterwards, Watchmen came to be known as a “graphic novel,” eventually being included in TIME magazine’s 2005 list, “ALL TIME 100 Greatest Novels.”

Various Hollywood figures had been plotting since 1986, the year of the comic book’s release, to turn Watchmen into a film. People previously involved with this project include such names as Joel Silver, Terry Gilliam, Darren Aronofsky, and Paul Greengrass. After numerous starts and stops, Watchmen, the movie, finally debuted in March 2009 and amounted to a large, expensive fart. Warner Bros. Pictures called the film’s director, Zack Snyder (300), a visionary, which must be Hollywood parlance for hack.

Watchmen is set in 1985 in an alternate version of the United States. The “Doomsday Clock,” which charts American’s tension with the Soviet Union, is permanently set at five minutes to midnight. Tensions between the two superpowers has escalated to the point that they are on the brink nuclear war. Costumed superheroes are also part of this alternate world. In fact, because of a superhero named Doctor Manhattan (Billy Crudup), the U.S. won the Vietnam War. This allowed Richard Nixon (Robert Wisden) to repeal term limits laws and win a third term as President of the United States. By the 1980s, however, the outpouring of anti-vigilante sentiment caused Congress to outlaw superheroes.

The most famous superheroes are the Watchmen. When one of them, the Comedian (Jeffrey Dean Morgan), is murdered, a colleague, the masked vigilante Rorschach (Jackie Earle Haley), sets out to uncover what he believes is a plot by an unknown “mask killer” to kill former superheroes. What Rorschach uncovers is a wide-ranging conspiracy linked to the other Watchmen: Adrian Veidt/Ozymandias (Matthew Goode), the smartest man in the world who is also self-made super rich; the godlike Dr. Manhattan; his girlfriend, the ass-kicking Laurie Jupiter/Silk Spectre (Malin Ackerman); and Daniel Dreiberg, the Batman-like Nite Owl (Patrick Wilson). It is a conspiracy that could destroy or save the world.

Watchmen is mostly a failure as a drama because it lacks emotional resonance. Except for a few moments of the film – the relationship between Dan Dreiberg and Laurie Jupiter and Laurie’s relationship with her mother Sally Jupiter (Carla Gugino), among them – Watchmen is flat. The characters come across as if they were lead figures being slide across a board game. They are poorly developed and bloated rather than lively.

As an action film, Watchmen lacks the high energy of an action flick because the few action scenes that this movie has feel as if they were dropped in to punch up this contrived screen story. However, such scenes as Nite Owl and Silk Spectre’s rescue at the burning tenement and their mission to free Rorschach from prison are quite good.

Watchmen pretends to have something to say about the human condition, the state of the world, the manifestation of the superhuman in society, the threat of annihilation, etc., but the film lacks any sociological context. In spite of its references to real world events, the film feels empty, as if its references are more about image than substance. Characters meant to have significance – such as Watchmen’s version of Richard Nixon (played by an actor wearing a ridiculous prosthetic nose) and Henry Kissinger – are just stick figures and caricatures occupying the screen until the main Watchmen characters come back. The filmmakers use songs and famous recordings by Nat King Cole, Bob Dylan, Simon & Garfunkel, and the Jimi Hendrix Experience, to convey the appropriate socio-political themes and messages, because the script is too retarded to do that.

Watchmen feels empty. It is like a giant art or creative project that is impressive because of the materials and technical expertise used to make it, but is ultimately devoid of meaning or substance. It is confounding in its emptiness and shallowness and is actually the opposite of cerebral. When it tries to be compelling – especially during the big reveal in the final act – it is laughable. Where Alan Moore and Dave Gibbons original comic book was daring, Watchmen the film is often boring and sadly, disappointingly staged and stuffy. The great original is now an embalmed big budget Hollywood misfire. The few moments of genuine goodness that Watchmen has are not worth watching a movie that is almost three hours long.

3 of 10

Friday, April 23, 2010


Amazon wants me to inform you that the affiliate link below is a PAID AD, but I technically only get paid (eventually) if you click on the affiliate link below AND buy something(s).

Friday, April 23, 2010

AMC Presents "Breaking Bad" Interactive Comic

AMC has created a brand new interactive comic based on the plot of their critically acclaimed series, Breaking Bad. The new game The Interrogation follows the series character DEA Agent Hank Schrader as he tries to uncover the motives behind a crime. You choose the questions that Hank asks his suspect.

There's an art to interrogation -- an art that DEA Agent Hank Schrader, for one, has mastered. But how about you? Here's your chance to find out, assuming the role of Hank in this original Breaking Bad Interactive Comic called “The Interrogation:"

Breaking Bad, Sundays 10pm/9C on AMC:
Breaking Bad follows protagonist Walter White (Bryan Cranston), a chemistry teacher who lives in New Mexico with his wife (Anna Gunn) and teenage son (RJ Mitte) who has cerebral palsy.  White is diagnosed with Stage III cancer and given a prognosis of two years left to live. With a new sense of fearlessness based on his medical prognosis, and a desire to secure his family's financial security, White chooses to enter a dangerous world of drugs and crime and ascends to power in this world.

The series explores how a fatal diagnosis such as White's releases a typical man from the daily concerns and constraintsof normal society and follows his transformation from mild family man to a kingpin of the drug trade.

John Singleton to Adapt Kevin Grevioux Graphic Novel for Television

The following Negro movie news comes from an article at AOL Black Voices "BV on Movies" blog:

John Singleton is reportedly going to direct a television miniseries for EPIX TV, a premium movie channel owned by Studio 3 Partners, a joint venture between Paramount Pictures, MGM and Lionsgate.  The series is called "The Gray Men" and is based on a new graphic novel by actor Kevin Grevioux.

Grevioux wrote the original screenplay for the 2003 film, Underworld, although Grevioux was excluded from contributing to the screenplays for the Underworld sequels.  Grevioux played the werewolf, Raze, in the original film.  Grevioux also writes comic books for his own line of comics and also for Marvel Comics, including the series, New Warriors and Adam: Legend of the Blue Marvel.  As of this writing, "The Gray Men" has not been published.
"The Gray Man" is apparently a period piece set in the 1960s, and looks at a time when the government was recruiting young African-American college students to infiltrate radicals groups, including the Black Panthers.

Grevioux reportedly has another film, "I, Frankenstein," in pre-production.  Scheduled to start shooting this summer, "I, Frankenstein" is based on the comic book series from Darkstorm Comics and features Frankenstein's monster, Dracula, Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, among others.  Patrick Tatopoulos, who directed Underworld: Rise of the Lycans, will helm this live-action feature with Grevioux, Robert Sanchez, and Lakeshore Entertainment (which produced Underworld) serving as producers.

Final DVD Collecting 1990s X-Men Cartoon Arrvies Soon

X-MEN: Volume 5 2-Disc DVD FACT SHEET


Studio: Buena Vista Home Entertainment

Synopsis: The original tales of Marvel comic books come to life in Volume 5 of the X-men collection. Relive the action of the popular animated series in this collectible compilation of the X-men adventures. The X-men must turn to their arch-nemesis, Magneto, in an effort to save the life of Professor Xavier! Watch the action unfold in the final episode, “Graduation Day, “ and don’t miss a moment of X-men excitement in this 2-disc set, complete with 14 riveting episodes. Complete your X-men collection with this must-own final installment of this great animated series.

X-men stars voice talents Iona Morris (Law and Order, Spider-man, Fantastic Four, The Wayans Bros), Lenore Zann (Law and Order, Dragon Tales) and Alison Seasly-Smith (Honey, Degrassi: The Next Generation, M.V.P: The Secret Lives of Hockey Wives) and is executive produced by Stan Lee (Spider-Man, Iron Man, The Fantastic Four, The Ultimate Avengers II), Scott Thomas (Gargoyles: The Goliath Chronicles) and Will Meugniot (Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, X-Men: Evolution, Silver Surfer).


Disc 1
Episode 63 The Phalanx Covenant (Part 1)
Episode 64 The Phalanx Covenant (Part 2)
Episode 65 A Deal With The Devil
Episode 66 No Mutant Is An Island
Episode 67 Longshot
Episode 68 Bloodlines

Disc 2
Episode 69 Storm Front (Part 1)
Episode 70 Storm Front (Part 2)
Episode 71 Jubilee's Fairy Tale Theatre
Episode 72 The Fifth Horseman
Episode 73 Old Soldiers
Episode 74 Descent
Episode 75 Hidden Agendas
Episode 76 Graduation Day

STREET DATE: May 4, 2010
Suggested retail price: $23.99 US; $29.99 Canada
Rated: TV – Y7
Run time: 308 minutes
DVD aspect ratio: 4:3
Sound: Dolby Digital Surround Sound, Spanish and French Language
Tracks & Subtitles

© MARVEL, X-MEN, and all related characters and their distinctive likenesses thereof are trademarks of Marvel Entertainment, Inc. and its subsidiaries and are used with permission. © 2010 Marvel Entertainment, Inc. and its subsidiaries. © Buena Vista Home Entertainment, Inc.

Review: "The Return of Jafar" a Nice Follow-up to Walt Disney's "Aladdin"

TRASH IN MY EYE No. 191 (of 2006) by Leroy Douresseaux

The Return of Jafar (1994) – straight to video – animation
Running time:  69 minutes (1 hour, 9 minutes)
DIRECTORS: Toby Shelton, Tad Stones, and Alan Zaslove
WRITERS: Kevin Campbell, Mirith JS Colao, Bill Motz, Steve Roberts, Dev Ross, Bob Roth, Jan Strnad, and Brian Swenlin; from a story by Duane Capizzi, Douglas Langdale, Mark McCorkle, Robert Schooley, and Tad Stones
PRODUCERS: Tad Stones and Alan Zaslove
EDITOR: Elen Orson


Starring: (voices) Scott Weinger, Gilbert Gottfried, Linda Lavin, Dan Castellaneta, Jonathan Freeman, Jason Alexander, Val Bettin, Frank Welker, and Jim Cummings, Brad Kane, and Liz Callaway

The heroes and villains of Walt Disney’s Oscar-winning Aladdin (1992) return in the straight-to-video feature, The Return of Jafar – produced mostly by the now-defunct Walt Disney Television Animation based in Australia (DisneyToon Studios).

Aladdin (Scott Weinger) and Jasmine (Linda Lavin) are ready to begin their life as a royal couple, especially now that the Sultan of Agrabah (Val Bettin), Jasmine’s father, has a big announcement to make concerning Aladdin. However, Iago (Gilbert Gottfried), the parrot sidekick of Aladdin’s nemesis in the original film, Jafar (Jonathan Freeman) reappears. Iago, ever an opportunist, wants to be on the winning side and return to the life of luxury at the Sultan’s palace, so he attempts to make nice with Aladdin. Iago is succeeding in earning Aladdin’s trust on a provisional basis when Jafar, now the powerful Red Genie, returns to Agrabah with the help of Abis Mal (Jason Alexander), the chief of a local band of thieves. Both Jafar and Abis Mal want their revenge against Aladdin, and Jafar coerces Iago into helping him. The scene-stealing (blue) Genie (Dan Castellaneta) also returns, but can he help Aladdin stop Jafar’s diabolical plans and get rid of him for good?

The animation in The Return of Jafar isn’t nearly as good or as pretty as it is Aladdin. The colors aren’t as rich, and the shading on characters and objects isn’t there. The character animation is good, but not up to the standards of Disney feature animation. At the time of release, however, this was better than most of the animation produced domestically or overseas for American television, and The Return of Jafar is a nice second serving of the characters and situations from the original film. The last 20 minutes of this movie is riveting, thrilling stuff – as good as that in many live action, action flicks.

The characters are still themselves with the cast giving good voice acting performances, for the most part. Here, Genie is voiced by Dan Castellaneta, the voice of “Homer Simpson” (and numerous others) on “The Simpsons,” but he’s so-so as Genie. The absence of Robin Williams, who refused to reprise the role because of a dispute over merchandising money with Disney, is painfully obvious. Luckily, the dispute was resolved and Williams returned for a second direct-to-video sequel to Aladdin.

6 of 10

Saturday, September 02, 2006


Thursday, April 22, 2010

1994 Iron Man Animated TV Series on DVD in May

IRON MAN: The Complete 1994 Animated Television Series


Studio: Buena Vista Home Entertainment

Story: From Stan Lee comes Marvel’s complete 1994 animated television series, Iron Man. Experience every thrilling moment – from the very first episode, to the final climactic battle – in this 3-disc collector’s edition. Witness the action-packed adventure from the very beginning as billionaire inventor Tony Stark dons his invincible suit of iron to battle the villainous Mandarin and the power of his ten deadly rings.

With fellow super heroes Nick Fury, War Machine, Scarlet Witch, Spider Woman and Hawkeye at his side, Iron Man faces off against a band of evil foes, including Whiplash…and confronts his own demons, as well.

Go behind the armor and get to know the man under the powered suit. This complete Iron Man collection is a must-have for fans of all ages !

“Iron Man” stars voice talent Robert Hays (Superhero Movie), John Reilly (TV’s “General Hospital: Night Shift”), Jennifer Hale (Ariel’s Beginning – Voice) and is executive produced by Stan Lee (Spider-Man, Iron Man, The Fantastic Four, The Ultimate Avengers II), Avi Arad (Spider-Man 4, Fantastic Four, X-Men: The Last Stand) and Larry Leiber (Iron Man, Iron Man 2).


Disc 1:
1. And The Sea Shall Give Up It's Dead
2. Rejoice! I Am Ultimo Thy Deliverer
3. Data In - Chaos Out
4. Silence My Companion, Death My Destination
5. The Grim Reaper Wears A Teflon Coat
6. Enemy Within, Enemy Without
7. Origin Of The Mandarin
8. Defection Of The Hawkeye

Disc 2:
9. Iron Man To The Second Power (Part 1)
10. Iron Man To The Second Power (Part 2)
11. Origin Of Iron Man (Part 1)
12. Origin Of Iron Man (Part 2)
13. Wedding Of Iron Man!
14. The Beast Within
15. Fire And Rain
16. Cell Of Iron
17. Not Far From The Tree

Disc 3:
18. Beauty Knows No Pain
19. On The Inside
20. Distant Boundaries
21. The Armor Wars (Part 1)
22. The Armor Wars (Part 2)
23. Hulkbuster
24. Empowered
25. Hands Of The Mandarin (Part 1)
26. Hands Of The Mandarin (Part 2)

STREET DATE: May 4, 2010
Suggested retail price: $29.99 US; $35.99 Canada
Rated: TV – Y7
Run time: 572 minutes
DVD aspect ratio: 4:3
Sound: Dolby Digital Surround Sound, Spanish and French Language Tracks & Subtitles

© MARVEL, IRON-MAN and all related characters and their distinctive likenesses thereof are trademarks of Marvel Entertainment, Inc. and its subsidiaries and are used with permission. © 2010 Marvel Entertainment, Inc. and its subsidiaries. © Buena Vista Home Entertainment, Inc.