Category Archives: Films Based on Graphic Novels
THE DARK KNIGHT RISES-United States/United Kingdom-2012
Directed by Christopher Nolan
Story by Christopher Nolan and David S. Goyer
Screenplay by Christopher Nolan and Jonathan Nolan
Based on characters created by Bob Kane
I had no intention of even writing about “The Dark Knight Rises.” For the most part I review horror films and I leave the reviews of the mainstream films in the hands of others who are perfectly capable of the task. Does this mean I hated the film? It most certainly does not. “The Dark Knight Rises” is a superbly written, acted and directed motion picture and it is a fitting end to a trilogy that began in 2005 with “Batman Begins” and which continued with “The Dark Knight” in 2008. It is a rare film that can be viewed as an individual effort and be enjoyed and still be regarded as part of something way bigger. From the very start, Christopher Nolan, David S. Goyer and Jonathan Nolan had an epic story that they wanted to tell and they never lost sight of that vision.
I tried to pinpoint the theme of this film, but I just couldn’t quite put my finger on it. Then, as luck would have it and I was glancing over the trivia for the movie I noticed that Christopher Nolan had said that the theme of “Batman Begins” was fear, “The Dark Knight” was about chaos, and finally “The Dark Knight Rises” was about pain. When I read that, I thought back over the events of the movie and realized that that was exactly what this film is about. There is pain all through this movie; the pain of loss, physical pain and finally the pain of betrayal.
But there is a pain that overshadows this film because of one man’s cowardly actions. I am of course talking about the horrific events of the shooting that occurred in Aurora, Colorado during the midnight premiere of the film. 12 people dead and 59 injured because of the rage of one idiot. I refuse to mention this piece of shit’s name for the simple fact that he does not deserve that recognition. People work hard for the right to enjoy themselves, whether it is at a baseball game, a vacation or just going to a movie with friends and family. No one should ever have to suffer the way these people and their loved ones have suffered. For that the only thing I can do is say that I am truly sorry.
Finally, as I pulled up to the theater I expected to see a crowd lined up and waiting to see the film; but that was not the case. I asked the ticket taker if the events in Colorado had put a damper on attendance and sadly he said that they had. I also know that there have been a lot of people saying that the release of the film should have been moved to a later date. I am sorry, but I disagree. To do this would be to admit that the man responsible had won. He has won nothing and is a complete coward. Oh, and don’t try to tell me he’s crazy. His act was completely premeditated. I know there will be people who disagree with me and that is perfectly fine; but this is one moment when the show must go on.
One of the reasons why Christopher Nolan cast Tom Hardy as Bane was because of his performance in the film RocknRolla. Hardy stated that he thought he was cast because of his role in Bronson. He arrived on set only to learn that Nolan has never even seen Bronson.
Anne Hathaway, who plays Catwoman, had been cast as Black Cat (Felicia Hardy) in The Amazing Spider-Man in 2010, which at that time was under Sam Raimi’s direction as “Spider-Man 4″ and was going to feature the Vulture and Black Cat.
- Film Reviews: Movie review: The Dark Knight Rises (12A) (dailyrecord.co.uk)
- The Dark Knight Rises: Director Christopher Nolan defends fans’ anger over negative reviews (scotsman.com)
- ‘Dark Knight Rises’: 10 Things You Should Know Before Watching the Film (PHOTOS) (celebuzz.com)
- people really like ‘The Dark Knight Rises’ (wwtdd.com)
- The Dark Knight Rises (wetalkaboutmovies.com)
- Over 15 New High-Resolution Images from THE DARK KNIGHT RISES (collider.com)
- Thoughts on “The Dark Knight Rises” (kylesmithonline.com)
- Hype rises over The Dark Knight’s final installment (vancouversun.com)
- Christopher and Jonathan Nolan Talk About How Charles Dickens Shaped ‘The Dark Knight Rises’ (slashfilm.com)
- New Trailer Takes Us Through Christopher Nolan’s Entire DARK KNIGHT Trilogy (collider.com)
- Christopher Nolan insists size matters for The Dark Knight Rises (o.canada.com)
- Watch, Pass, or Rent Video Movie Review: The Dark Knight Rises (popsugar.com)
- Is ‘the Dark Knight Rises’ Immune From Criticism? (contactmusic.com)
- The Reviews Are In … (huffingtonpost.com)
- Film Review: The Dark Knight Rises (filmophilia.com)
- The Dark Knight Rises Stars Get Stylish For Their London Premiere (popsugar.com)
- ‘Dark Knight Rises’ Spoilers: David S. Goyer Talks Movie Ending (screenrant.com)
- Early Buzz: ‘The Dark Knight Rises’ Delivers On Lofty Expectations (slashfilm.com)
- Tom and Anne Prep For a Big Weekend as The Dark Knight Rises Hits Theaters (popsugar.com)
- Christopher and Jonathan Nolan Explain How A TALE OF TWO CITIES Influenced THE DARK KNIGHT RISES (collider.com)
- Christian Bale Spent ‘An Awful Long Time’ With The ‘Dark Knight Rises’ Script (splashpage.mtv.com)
- ‘Dark Knight Rises’: A guest review by Neal Adams (herocomplex.latimes.com)
- Joseph Gordon-levitt – Joseph Gordon-levitt: Fans Will See Hathaway Differently After Dark Knight Rises (contactmusic.com)
- ‘Dark Knight Rises’ premiere: Watch Hathaway, Bale live (herocomplex.latimes.com)
X-MEN:FIRST CLASS-United States-2011
Directed by Matthew Vaughn
Screenplay by Ashley Edward Miller, Zack Stentz, Jane Goldman and Matthew Vaughn
Story by Sheldon Turner and Bryan Singer
Thank God for Michael Fassbender! Okay, I know this film is about the X-men as a team. I know that it stars James McAvoy as Charles Xavier before he became a poster child for the handi-capable. I know that it stars a post-Winter’s Bone and a pre-The Hunger Games Jennifer Lawrence as the even hot when she’s blue Mystique. I know it stars the brilliant and underrated Kevin Bacon as the villain Sebastian Shaw. I know that it introduces the world to Banshee, Havok and all the other beloved X-men. I know all that and then some.
So why do I say thank God for Michael Fassbender? I say it because finally someone has the balls to step up and give us an absolutely no holds barred definitive version of the greatest villain that Marvel Comics has ever unleashed on this world. I’m talking about the man, the myth, the Master of Magnetism himself-Magneto. Fassbender does for Magneto what Ian McKellen was never able to accomplish. He shows us the man behind the name; he shows us the weaknesses and takes us on the journey that Erik Lehnsherr would take on his way to become the Malcolm X to Charles Xavier’s Martin Luther King. Fassbender’s Erik/Magneto rules with an iron fist and he is just getting started. This is no miniscule movie review, you mere mortals. This is the paving of the way for Mr. Fassbender and his magnificent performance.
So, now that I’ve lain that little bit of hyperbole on you, I’m going to close out with a little bit more. X-men: First Class is everything a superhero movie should be. It’s exciting, over the top, a little corny and last but not least it is one hell of a ride. X-men: First Class is the best superhero team movie ever made. Until May 4, 2012 and the release of The Avengers I will stand by that statement with every fiber of my being. After that day, we shall see.
Amber Heard was rumored to play Mystique before Jennifer Lawrence was cast.
The uniforms the X-Men wear are colored blue and yellow, in homage to the original blue/yellow suits the X-Men wore in the comics from 1963 (their debut) until (original artist and co-creator) Jack Kirby’s departure from the book. After several costume changes throughout the years, the costumes used in X-Men inspired new black leather uniforms seen in the Grant Morrison written 2001 New X-Men comic).
Director Matthew Vaughn cited the first two X-Films, Star Trek and the 1960s Bond films as major influences on this film.
Both Michael Fassbender and James McAvoy appeared in Band of Brothers at the start of their careers. This marks their first appearance together since then.
- Movie Review: X-Men:First Class (alexandruzai.wordpress.com)
- Jennifer Lawrence Shoots and Scores With Boyfriend Nicholas Hoult (popsugar.com)
- What’s Next For Rose Byrne’s Moira MacTaggert? (splashpage.mtv.com)
- Jennifer Lawrence Is Ready For ‘X-Men’ Sequel (splashpage.mtv.com)
- James McAvoy and Michael Fassbender Hug It Out Alongside January and Zoe (popsugar.com)
CAPTAIN AMERICA: THE FIRST AVENGER-United States-2011
But enough about the others, I’m here to tell you what I think about Captain America. I can sum it up in one word. Eh. There are some moments in the film that should have been amazing to watch, but they were just…there. I believe that Chris Evans was a good physical fit as the good Captain, but I really didn’t find his screen presence to be all that great. To be honest, I had more fun watching Hugo Weaving chew the scenery as Johann Schmidt/The Red Skull than I did Evans as Steve Rogers/Captain America. But, I digress. I don’t lay the blame squarely on Evan’s shoulders. I lay the blame solely on one person and that person is director Joe Johnston. Up to and including Captain America, I have yet to see a motion picture from Johnston that wasn’t half-ass. Jumanji-boring. Jurassic Park III-worst of the series. The Wolfman-not bad, not good, just there.
That’s the way I feel about Captain America: The First Avenger. It’s just there, that’s all.
Jon Favreau was originally chosen by Marvel Studios to direct this film (which he intended to make as a buddy comedy), but he chose to direct Iron Man. Nick Cassavetes, was also considered to direct this film, and had been set as a director forIron Man in December 2004.
Louis Leterrier viewed some of the concept art for the film, and was impressed enough to offer his services, but Marvel Studios turned him down. However, his film The Incredible Hulk features a small appearance by Captain America: a deleted scene set in the Arctic features his body hidden in a slab of ice.
Hugo Weaving based the Red Skull’s accent on renowned German filmmakers Werner Herzog and Klaus Maria Brandauer.
- No ‘Avengers’ For ‘Captain America’ Actress (splashpage.mtv.com)
- ‘Captain America’ Co-Creator Joe Simon Dies (splashpage.mtv.com)
- “The Avengers” told from the perspective of Captain America, Joss Whedon says (inquisitr.com)
This is something I don’t usually do; but it has been brought to my attention that I may have been a bit harsh in my critcism of Chris Evans in his role as Captain America. I admit that my review was based on having the film upon it’s release and was therefore based in turn on memory. I re-watched the film last night and I am not afraid to admit that I was wrong. Evans does a highly credible job in the role and should be commended. I still stand by my criticism of director Joe Johnston. My rating for the film now moves up from a 2 blood drop rating to 3.
To tell you the truth, I’ve been itching to talk about The Walking Dead for quite some time. The only thing is that I wasn’t sure how to go about it. Do I go the critical route and dryly state that the show is one of the best shows on television? What if I were to give it two big thumbs up, or is that copyright infringement or whatever? In the long run, I’m inclined to take the fanboy route and say The Walking Dead is awesome!! It’s got zombies and blood and guts, OH MY!!!
Alright, I’m calmer now. Forgive that outburst. It’s just that it’s been a long time since my inner child has experienced the excitement of a weekly TV series that gets the horror and the zombie genre so accurately correct. What’s even more amazing is that it seems like it’s hardly even trying. The best way to describe the show is that it’s about a small group of ordinary people trying to survive extraordinary odds in a world overrun by zombies, or ‘walkers’, as they are referred to on the show. The group is led by Rick Grimes, a police officer shot in the line of duty that wakes up as a stranger in a strange land. He does his best to lead the ragtag group of survivors; while at the same time hold on to the sensibilities of what he knows are right and wrong. The brilliant ensemble cast is rounded out with stunning performances from Jon Bernthal, Laurie Holden, Jeffrey DeMunn, Sarah Wayne Callies and Norman Reedus. In fact, Reedus is perfectly cast in the role of racist Daryl Dixon and is well deserving of an Emmy nomination.
What makes The Walking Dead so amazing aside from the brilliant cast and strong storyline is the make-up. Led by Gregory Nicotero, the SFX crew goes out of their way each week to bring movie quality makeup and effects to this small screen masterpiece.
So, there you have it; my complete and total praise of one of the best shows on television, The Walking Dead. But don’t take my word for it. Watch it and see for yourself.
- ‘Walking Dead’ Star Norman Reedus Talks Daryl Dixon (mtv.com)
- One of The Walking Dead Could Be … Walking? (dreadcentral.com)
- The Walking Dead’s Laurie Holden Talks Character Direction (dreadcentral.com)
- Morning After Pill Plot Device Causes Walking Dead Controversy (dreadcentral.com)
- How To Make A Monster, Baby! A Behind-the-Scenes Look at The Walking Dead Zombie Make-Up (dreadcentral.com)
SIN CITY-United States-2005
I got up from my chair and turned on the lights. My knees were weak and wobbly. My body felt like it had just gone through twelve rounds with Muhammad Ali. My head felt like Jeffrey Dahmer had taken it for a souvenir. I turned and looked at the box for the DVD I had just watched. Sin City screamed at me in red letters big enough to be seen from the moon, or at least a really high tree. But this movie didn’t need big letters to show off. It was already larger than life itself. It was a locomotive of a motion picture and I had just stood in its way for that last couple of hours. It repaid in full by hitting me head on and leaving me wanting more. When the daze finally wore off I sat there rubbing my chin and running my fingers through my hair. I came to the inevitable conclusion that I had just watched the most faithful adaptation of a graphic novel that was ever put to film.SinCity is a chew glass and gargle with acid love letter to the great Frank Miller. Miller is the literary genius behindSinCity. He has taken the comic book and elevated it to the status of literature. WithSinCity, the movie, Robert Rodriguez has taken film to the level of art.
I stopped typing and looked at the words on the page. I was satisfied with my words. This was not a review. How can I review a film that I think is nearly perfect? This is a thank you letter to Robert Rodriguez, Frank Miller and Quentin Tarantino. Thank you for makingSinCity. Thank you for staying true to the source. Thank you for making a film that is every bit as good as its source material.
I finished gushing like a schoolgirl and gathered my wits. I looked at my words and knew that I had said my piece. I got up and turned off the lights. I sat there in the darkness.SinCity. Perfection. Enough said.
- MOVIEWEB COMIC-CON 2011 ALERT: Sin City and Machete Sequels Moving Forward (businessinsider.com)
- Robert Rodriguez announces ‘Sin City,’ ‘Machete’ sequels (ctv.ca)
- Comic-Con 2011: Robert Rodriguez on ‘Sin City 2,’ ‘Machete’ sequels (one in space!) (insidemovies.ew.com)
30 DAYS OF NIGHT: DARK DAYS-United States-2010
Directed by Ben Ketai
Screenplay by Ben Ketai and Steve Niles
Based on the graphic novel by Steve Niles and Ben Templesmith
I’m at a loss of words. I just watched 30 Days of Night: Dark Days. It’s the sequel to the original film starring Josh Hartnett and Melissa George. Hartnett was killed in the first film and George is replaced by Kiele Sanchez. The film is based on the graphic novel of the same name by Steve Niles and Ben Templesmith. Niles is also the co-writer of the screenplay just as he was in the original. I’m at a loss for words because 30DoN: DD is as disappointing a sequel as you are ever likely to see. There’s a very good reason it was placed in the discount bin at Wal-Mart. This film is one of the most anemic vampire films I have ever seen.
In a plot that has been used a million times before, Stella Oleson meets a group of people who ask her to join them in ridding the world of vampires. In typical clichéd fashion she reluctantly accepts. I kept waiting for her to say something like “I work alone” or “I got my own agenda.” The group tells her they are going after the queen vampire, Lilith. The film is talk, talk, talk, talk, some action, talk, talk, talk, talk, a little more action, the end. I’ve seen better acting on WWE Monday Night Raw and better direction at a high school play.
Am I being unfair to the film? I don’t think so. I paid for this film and I have a right to express my disappointment. The DVD box has a blurb that says ‘Dark Days makes Twilight look like nursery school.’ If that’s the case then the first film makes Dark Days look like Twilight.
During publicity for the first film, Melissa George had expressed interest in reprising her role as Stella Olemaun in the sequel. According to producers, scheduling conflicts forced George to bow out and the role was recast with Kiele Sanchez.
Lilith bathing in blood is a clear reference to Elizabeth Bathory. Elizabeth Bathory was a sixteenth to seventeenth century countess, who supposedly killed numerous young women and bathed in their blood, in an attempt to retain her youth. She, along with Vlad III the Impaler, is one of the most common historical figures to be re-imagined as a vampire in popular culture.
- First look at The Darkest Hour’s shocking alien art by Ben Templesmith [Exclusive] (io9.com)
- SCREAM QUEEN of the MONTH-KATHARINE ISABELLE-August 2011 (jmountswritteninblood.com)
- New ’30 Days Of Night: Dark Days’ Images: Steve Niles Brings ‘Nasty’ Vampires To Comic-Con (splashpage.mtv.com)