Happy Birthday David and many more !!!!
Adam “Batman” West posted a photo of himself with the cast of WWE Legends House on his Facebook page, noting that he had the chance to work with them recently. So, expect West to appear on the series:
Of course, West is no stranger to dealing with wrestling legends:
We stand a little over four months away from the conclusion of Christopher Nolan‘s Batman trilogy, “The Dark Knight Rises.” The pressure on Nolan to deliver in an incredible experience compounds with “Rises” because, not only is he making a film about one of the most iconic heroes of all time, but he’s following up one of the most successful movies ever.
“The Dark Knight” changed the game. It was a complex, gritty and heady superhero ensemble piece, the likes of which had never been seen before in the genre. Following an act like “The Dark Knight” requires an equally if not more confident move by Nolan and his team, one that’s as ambitious yet still satisfying.
With the last film, Nolan cracked the code of the Batman movie, so here are some of the lessons he’ll need to carry over to make “The Dark Knight Rises” just as memorable.
Keep it dark
Joker smashed a pencil into some guy’s face. Then, he burned a guy alive on top of a pile of money. Rachel Dawes blew up mid-sentence. “The Dark Knight” went, well, dark and never made a big fuss about it. How bleak did any of the Marvel Universe films ever get? Sure, Bucky fake died. That was sad … kinda. Nolan’s world distinguishes itself by going there and making it feel natural. With only the close left, now is not the time to pull punches.
Don’t have too many villains
It isn’t necessarily my position that “The Dark Knight” featured too many villains. That was a general complaint made about adding Two-Face near the end; many said he didn’t get his due respect. While I mostly disagree, there’s something to that. If the villain in “Rises” turns out to be a surprise — as many predict it will be — the twist can take a lot of the impact out of the ending. We won’t be as invested in that character’s fate if he or she was revealed as an antagonist just 10 minutes before. If Nolan wants to surprise us with a villain, he should do it early and not put so much weight on the reveal.
Don’t dumb it down
“Dark Knight” had a lot going on. Batman was hunting the Joker. Harvey and Rachel were pursuing Gotham’s crime syndicate and citing conspiracy law. Gordon dealt with balancing his professional responsibilities with his wife’s requests to not fake his own death. Even Lucius Fox struggled with the complex morality of helping Batman spy on everyone in the city of Gotham. It all seems like a lot, but the ensemble structure of the story added a complexity that has yet to be replicated in a superhero movie. Nolan never pandered to the audience or held its hand. He told a multi-layered story and let you figure out how the pieces fit.
Make it about something
Part of what made “The Dark Knight” complex was that its characters and their arcs presented ideas for the audience to mull over. It wasn’t exactly “The Tree of Life,” but Nolan managed to inject some philosophy into a movie about a guy who dresses up like a bat. The moralistic crux of the movie rested on Harvey Dent and his conversion to the dark side. All it took was a little push for the supposed incorruptible Dent to kidnap Gordon’s wife and child. If Dent could go bad, what’s Batman fighting for? “The Dark Knight” asked questions about its characters, which surprisingly enough, doesn’t happen in many movies.
Make it about Batman
If “The Dark Knight Rises” is going to be the last we see of Nolan’s Batman, we better get a lot of him. With “The Dark Knight,” Nolan made the choice to also focus on all the people around Bruce Wayne, but for the conclusion, he’ll have to narrow the iris and keep the camera locked on the Caped Crusader. For his final bow, something must be said about Batman, what he does and why he exists. Gary Oldman has said repeatedly that Nolan would never make a movie without having something to say. The director clearly has a deep respect for the hero and has made two movies trying to earn ours. “The Dark Knight Rises” will be his closing arguments.
What other rules should Christopher Nolan follow in making “The Dark Knight Rises”? Leave your comment below!
The 109th annual American International Toy Fair kicks off next Monday in New York, so you can expect to see a lot of movie-related paraphernalia here. Right off the bat we’ve got some images of a “skill & strategy” game tie-in for The Avengers. It features four of our favorite heroes battling against a familiar enemy (hint: not Tom Hiddleston’s Loki). To see just who that enemy is, you’ll have to hit the jump. While it may not prove anything as far as Joss Whedon’s The Avengers plot line is concerned, this merchandise coupled with last weekend’s Super Bowl ad makes for a compelling case. The film stars Robert Downey Jr., Chris Hemsworth, Chris Evans, Samuel L. Jackson, Scarlett Johansson, Mark Ruffalo and Jeremy Renner. The Avengers opens in IMAX 3D on May 4th. Hit the jump to check out the toys.
[POSSIBLE SPOILER] For the uninitiated, it looks like the little pink baddies are none other than the shape-shifting Skrulls. The alien race had a nasty habit of mimicking superheroes and causing all sorts of havoc. Could be a nice plot addition to an assembled team of heroes who are already a bit wary of each other. Then again, the presence of the Skrulls in these images could be as baseless as the absence of Nick Fury, Hawkeye and Black Widow from the box. Make of it what you will. Check out previous toy posts for The Avengers here and here.You can check out all the shots of the The Avengers board game below (via Idle Hands and MTV):
Here’s the official synopsis for The Avengers:
Marvel Studios presents in association with Paramount Pictures “Marvel’s The Avengers”–the Super Hero team up of a lifetime, featuring iconic Marvel Super Heroes Iron Man, The Incredible Hulk, Thor, Captain America, Hawkeye and Black Widow. When an unexpected enemy emerges that threatens global safety and security, Nick Fury, Director of the international peacekeeping agency known as S.H.I.E.L.D., finds himself in need of a team to pull the world back from the brink of disaster. Spanning the globe, a daring recruitment effort begins. Starring Robert Downey Jr., Chris Evans, Mark Ruffalo, Chris Hemsworth, Scarlett Johansson, Jeremy Renner and Samuel L. Jackson, and directed by Joss Whedon, “Marvel’s The Avengers” is based on the ever-popular Marvel comic book series “The Avengers,” first published in 1963 and a comics institution ever since. Prepare yourself for an exciting event movie, packed with action and spectacular special effects, when “Marvel’s The Avengers” assemble in summer 2012. In “Marvel’s The Avengers,” superheroes team up to pull the
world back from the brink of disaster when an unexpected enemy threatens global security.
We’ve finally been given a look at Loki’s forces in the new, extended trailer for The Avengers, as premiered online just after a cut-down version graced the Superbowl.
Here are four screen grabs from the single shot in which they appear with any degree of clarity:
So it’s not the Skrull or the Kree – despite the silhouette almost matching, that’s down to their funky headwear.
These figures do look quite a bit like the Frost Giants as seen in Thor…
…but not exactly.
I don’t think these strange invaders are complete strangers, however. Or, at least, I reckon we’ve seen a scene with lots of similarities.
Here are some pages from Thor, during Walt Simonson’s run, the famous Surtur Saga storyline — which at one point brings in both the Fantastic Four and The Avengers in an attempt to help save the day against attack by an overwhelming force in New York.
What you see here are the sons of Muspell, creatures from Muspellheim, dropping into the streets of Manhattan to wreak havok. In both Norse myth and Simonson’s comics, this storyline also involves the breaking of the Bifröst bridge, but as some of that has been played out in last year’s Thor, Joss Whedon’s script for The Avengers probably won’t be going beat-for-beat with what we’ve already read in the comics.
In Simonson’s storyline, the sons of Muspell come to New York via a portal near the top of the Empire State Building. Here’s a page:
This too is echoed in these scenes from The Avengers. In that first trailer screencap at the top of this post, note a glimpse of some sort of large arch structure with the warriors dropping down from it (Or out of it. Edited to add — looking even more closely at that top image, the shadowed part of the arch seems to be actually composed of the figures emerging from it. That would match the concept of the comic page here almost exactly), and also note the Chrysler building here:
Some sort of energy burst around the spire of the building here, as per the comics. The edit makes it seem that Thor causes the lightning, but we don’t know if that’s really the case – and even if it is, there’s no reason to discount the association. Re-watch the trailer after you’ve taken a good look at these pages. Panic in the streets with warriors dropping down or out of an arched mass or structure, the focus on the building top, and the general look of the creatures… it’s all a pretty decent look-and-feel fit with the visual of the comic storyline, even if the details are remixed to fit the film.
So, Loki’s army would seem to be something like the sons of Muspell, from somewhere like Muspellheim. The names might change – that won’t be important – but if I were a betting man, I’d say that they won’t. I’d say the original Norse handles are going to hang around.
There’s a long history of comic book movies taking bits and pieces of imagery and plot mechanics from here and there in the strips that inspired them. I’m sure that Whedon has done just the same. And I’m also pretty sure he’ll have put them altogether into something fresh and cogent…
But to know about that for sure, there’s still a little waiting to get through. The Avengers reaches US screens on May 4th, and UK screens a week early on April 27th.
Doctor Who are giving away a 32-inch HD TV together with a blu-ray player and a copy of Doctor Who: The Complete 6th Series – Limited Edition and Christmas Special 2011 blu-ray. The competition can be entered by ‘liking’ the Facebook page at http://www.facebook.com/doctorwho and entering details at http://www.facebook.com/DoctorWho?sk=app_111113792337055
About the 2011 Christmas Special
Evacuated to a house in Dorset from war-torn London, Madge Arwell and her two children, Lily and Cyril, are greeted by a madcap caretaker whose mysterious Christmas gift leads them into a magical wintry world.
About The 6th Series
A Christmas Carol, The Impossible Astronaut, Day Of The Moon, The Curse Of The Black Spot, The Doctor’s Wife, The Rebel Flesh, The Almost People, A Good Man Goes To War, Let’s Kill Hitler, Night Terrors, The Girl Who Waited, The God Complex, Closing Time, The Wedding of River Song.