Wednesday, February 29, 2012

"Prometheus" goes viral, "Frankenweenie" rises + more "Avengers"

Prometheus, TED Talk Viral Video:

Aside from the fact that I'll watch just about anything with Guy Pearce, this new piece of viral marketing from Ridley Scott's Prometheus has sent my interest skyrocketing. Granted, this sort of set up - the overly ambitious corporation that stumbles upon something dangerous - has been used in plenty of sci-fi films before. Still, those other sci-fi films didn't have Alien helmer Ridley Scott sitting in the director's chair. According to Scott, Prometheus is not an official prequel to the Alien film series, though other interviews have suggested loose ties in the film's final act. Either way, Scott's return to sci-fi is reason for plenty of excitement. In the aftermath of the Transformers films, it will be nice to have a (hopefully) adult and intelligent slice of sci-fi horror/thriller to liven up the summer.

Grade: B+


For Tim Burton, 2012 is 2005 all over again. In addition to a star-studded live action effort (May's Dark Shadows), the director also has another stop motion film ready for release that instantly evokes the style he first exhibited in The Nightmare Before Christmas. The premise is simple, but if anyone can deliver on the execution, it's Burton (love that Bride of Frankenstein gag with the poodle). In a year where Pixar will likely return to dominance (Brave), Frankenweenie, a full length adaptation of an old Burton short film, could provide a quirky rival, and possibly earn the director an Oscar (at last). If only they could cut that mention of Alice in Wonderland from the trailer. Burton has directed so many wonderful films, and it's a shame that the marketing team is trying to lure audiences in by name-dropping his worst (as well as his most profitable) film.

Grade: B

The Avengers (#2):

Come May 4th, the buildup to The Avengers (which began with 2008's Iron Man) will finally be complete. While I haven't been crazy about some of the individual films leading up to this Joss Whedon-directed effort (Thor in particular), this looks like it will deliver the fun, glitzy popcorn goods in spades. The only thing that's worrisome at this point is whether or not all of the different stars involved will click as an ensemble. Considering the big four (Iron Man, Thor, the Hulk, and Captain America) are all leads in their respective franchises, The Avengers' biggest hurdle will be whether or not it can balance the various personalities without shortchanging one (or more). And even though Joss Whedon's name inspires confidence, that metal behemoth at the end is eerily close to something out of Michael Bay's Transformers universe.

Grade: B

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