Cinecast Episode 214 – I Hate that I Know That

We start things off simple. No Kurt. Just some Pirates and Priests. With unpleasantness out of the way, Kurt jumps in with both feet for a indie post-apocalyptic film out of Toronto, a re-evaluation of Inglorious Basterds and Tarantino’s career. Trains and Toni Collette keep the conversation chugging along and with Gamble here, “Game of Thrones” is sort of unavoidable. We all revel in the love for Rip Torn and South Korea before rounding everything out with a talk about sequels that are crazier than a rat in a tin shithouse (ala Caddyshack II and Gremilns II). Nobody dies.

As always, please join the conversation by leaving your own thoughts in the comment section below and again, thanks for listening!



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Review: Legion

Legion One Sheet

Director: Scott Stewart
Screenplay: Peter Schink, Scott Stewart
Producer: David Lancaster,
Starring: Paul Bettany, Dennis Quaid, Tyrese Gibson, Doug Jones, Jon Tenney, Charles S. Dutton, Lucas Black, Kate Walsh, Adrianne Palicki, Kevin Durand, Willa Holland
MPAA Rating: R
Running time: 100 min.

There were a number of good reasons to be excited for Scott Stewart’s directorial debut, a film of biblical apocalypse titled Legion. The trailers for the film suggested some serious awesomeness and with Paul Bettany on board as the protector (and perhaps savior) of mankind, there was no way to avoid seeing this. Sadly, Stewart creates a dull, mindless film that doesn’t even manage to be entertaining.

Legion Movie StillGod is angry. He’s not even really angry, he’s just pissed off and tired at the dumbassery of humanity and so he decides to wield his mighty power and set the apocalypse upon the human asses. Rather than simply exterminating us with some doom and gloom that will kill us off instantly, he decides to take his time, letting loose evil and in an Agent-body-take-over way right out of The Matrix, much of the world is taken over and controlled by some sort of evil entity. To the rescue comes Michael (yes, as in the Archangel) who has decided that God isn’t right this time around and needs some help seeing the light. Disobeying a direct order, he removes himself from heaven and falls to earth to yield guns and swords against the possessed in an attempt to save humanity’s only salvation: an unborn child getting ready to pop in the middle of bum-fuck-nowhere.

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VIFF 09 Review: The Young Victoria


The Young Victoria

Though it wasn’t his first film, Candian director Jean-Marc Vallée emerged as a sort of Canadian superstar with C.R.A.Z.Y., his depiction of coming of age in the 1970s. For his follow up, Vallée hasn’t strayed far from the tree and has chosen another coming of age tale, this one a tale of a young woman in 19th century Britain.

The fictionalized account of Queen Victoria’s early years, The Young Victoria quickly sets up the Princess’ childhood before settling into her teen years. The real life story of Victoria is an interesting one but the film, written by Oscar winner Julian Fellowes, is more interested in the Queen’s personal life than any of the political goings on. This is the story of a woman thrust into a seat of power and how she copes with the pressure of not simply growing up in public but also having everyone around her, including the country itself, pressuring her to make choices she was unwilling to make.

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Legion Trailer Starring Paul Bettany

Legion Movie Promo

The only selling point required to get me excited about seeing Legion was to tell me the movie stars Paul Bettany. I could watch Bettany sit in a chair for an hour, there’s a magnetism to him that always draws my attention and makes even the worse films bearable (I’m looking at you The Da Vinci Code).

An original story by Peter Schink and director Scott Stewart, Priest is a Christian-themed action thriller which stars Bettany as the Archangel Michael who leads a group of strangers in protecting a woman who is pregnant with Christ for the second coming (I can already see the protesters gearing up for action). Aside from Bettany, the film also stars Dennis Quaid, Kevin Durand, Doug Jones and Lucas Black.

The visuals here, and in part the story, remind me a little of Constantine, a movie which doesn’t get a whole lot of love but which I enjoy, and if this is in the save vein (which it certainly appears to be), it’s all the more reason for my excitement. The trailer is also very long and very much on the spoiler side of things. I recommend turning it off at the halfway mark if you’re worried about spoilers.

This is Stewart’s first full length feature though he has an extended list of visual effects work behind him. Granted that doesn’t say much but I am curious to see how this turns out, especially considering that Stewart is also directing Priest which also happens to star Bettany in the lead.

Legion opens on January 22, 2010.

Thanks to QE for the hookup, you can check out the trailer tucked under the seat!.

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Paul Bettany as a Vampire Fighting Priest? Hell Yes!

Paul BettanyThe western/supernatural mashup may be a new developing trend. First there’s the yet to be released Gallowwalker (which we previously discussed) and now it looks like another entry into the genre fusion is right around the corner.

News today is that the ridiculously talented Paul Bettany is in talks to star in the big screen adaptation of Hyung Min-woo’s popular Korean manga “Priest”. It’s the story of Ivan Isaacs, the title character of Priest, who basically has to save the world by fighting off evil beings, including vampires. It’s an extended and somewhat convoluted plot featuring fallen angels, God, demons and all sorts of other nasties which, if you’re looking for more detail, is well documented here.

There is speculation that the film adaptation will not look at either the fallen angels or zombies but will focus specifically on the vampires and having yet to read the material, I can’t comment on what the omission means for the film but I will say this: Paul Bettany in talks to save the world against bad guys in a western themed world certainly has my attention.

It looks like this isn’t the first time Bettany and director Scott Charles Stewart have worked together. The duo recently finished filming Legion, an interesting sounding horror thriller which is now in post production.

I’m interested. The story of “Priest” sounds like something I should be reading and with Bettany slated to star in the adaptation, I’m definitely curious about the production.

Finally, A Proper Inkheart Trailer and Release Information

Inkheart Movie StillI‘m a very big fan of children’s author Cornelia Funke and my love of her work has migrated from the page to the screen. It seems like I’ve been tracking the adaption Inkheart for years but it looks like the film will finally be coming to the big screen.

I first posted a trailer in December of last year and then an update when the film’s release was pushed into 2009 and with January quickly approaching, New Line has released a beautiful new trailer for Iain Softley’s adaptation.

The film stars Brendan Fraser (who actually stands a chance of breaking his run of appearing in shitty movies) as a man with a secret: he can bring books to life by reading them aloud but when the brings a villain to life, he must team up with his daughter, played by Eliza Bennett, and a makeshift group of heroes to stop the evil man from destroying the world. Along with Fraser and Bennett, the film’s cast rounds out quite nicely with the inclusion of the brilliant Paul Bettany, Helen Mirren, Jim Broadbent and Andy Serkis playing the evil Capricorn.

I love the look and feel of this trailer, the mix of reality and fantasy is gorgeous, and to boot, it looks like it could be a lot of fun. I’m mildly concerned about Serkis who seems to be hamming up the evil villain role but other than that, I’m completely on board.

Inkheart is now scheduled to open on January 9th and yes, I’m counting down the months. It may be time to revisit my twice read copy of the novel.

Trailer is tucked under the seat!

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