Blog Archives

Return of ‘The Walking Dead’

AMC’s The Walking Dead returns Sunday, 12 February.  I can’t wait!  How ’bout you?  What’d you think of the mid-season finale?  Were you happy with Shane’s actions?  What will happen now?   Here’s AMC’s sneak peek at Ep 208, Nebraska. [SPOILER ALERT: Video clip contains spoilers from Episode 07 of Season 2.]

For those who have missed some episodes, don’t fret.  AMC is airing a two-day marathon beginning on Sat., Feb. 11 at 8/7c, covering the full series to date. They’ll show all six episodes of Season 1 back-to-back on Saturday starting at 8/7c. Then on Sunday, the marathon continues with Season 2 episodes starting at 1:30PM/12:30c, leading right into the Midseason Premiere, “Nebraska” at 9/8c.   You can check here for the full recap schedule.

Word is the show’s third season has been extended to 16 episodes.  While I’m thrilled I have more Walking Dead to enjoy, I hope the episodes are more intense that they have been so far in Season 2.  Is it just me or where the episodes in Season 1 just a bit more edge-of-your-seat intense?  That said, I have enjoyed Season 2’s more character-based episodes.  They have allowed us to get to know them all a bit better, even if that means we like them a little less.

I have to say, the character who surprised me the most in Season 2 is Daryl.  In season 1, he was just a background character and not one of my favorites.  In season 2, we get to see him shine.    He is quickly becoming one of my favorites.  Who’s your favorite?  Are you ready to see some changes in the group’s leadership? Or think all is as it should be?

If you’re not already a fan of the series, what are you waiting for?  Catch-up this weekend and you’ll be hooked like the rest of us!

Be sure to check out AMC’s “10 Ways to Get Ready for The Walking Dead Midseason Premiere” for more videos.  You can also take their “Which Character Are You?” quiz to see who you’d likely take after should you survive the apocalypse.

[The Walking Dead Midseason Premiere Airs Sunday, 12 Feb]

Related Posts: Get Ready for the Return of The Walking Dead, The Walking Dead Returns, and Zombie Awareness Month (ZAM).

“Cold Winds Are Rising” ~ Game of Thrones S2 Teaser

Season two teaser of Game of Thrones narrated by Stannis Baratheon, the dead King’s elder brother.

2012 Movies to Watch Out For: REMAKES

Remakes are pretty popular with the movie-makers at the moment but not necessarily with movie-goers. Some are perfectly happy with the originals and let’s be honest, most remakes suck. Here are some of the remakes coming to the big screen in 2012.

Dredd

Action | Sci-Fi
Photobucket Photobucket Photobucket

Remake of: Judge Dredd (1995)

Release month: US ~ September | UK ~ tbd

Synopsis: In a violent, futuristic city, the police have the authority to act as judge, jury and executioner.

Stars: Karl Urban (Star Trek) as Judge Dredd , Lena Headey (Game of Thrones)

Makers also worked on: I Am Number Four (2011), Never Let Me Go (2010), 28 Weeks Later (2007), Sunshine (2007)

News & Trivia: Filmed in South Africa. Currently in post-production. Estimated $45m budget.


Total Recall

Action | Sci-Fi | Adventure Photobucket

Remake of: Total Recall (1990)

Release month: US ~ August | UK ~ August

Synopsis: As the nation states Euromerica and New Shanghai vie for supremacy, a factory worker (Farrell) begins to suspect that he’s a spy, though he is unaware which side of the fight he’s on.

Stars: Colin Farrell (Phone Booth) as Doug Quaid / Hauser, Kate Beckinsale, Jessica Biel, Ethan Hawke, Bill Nighy

Makers also worked on: Fast & Furious 5 (2011), Die Hard 4.0 (2010), I Am Legend (2007), Underworld (2003)

News & Trivia: Currently in post-production. Preview of a Total Recall car.


Dark Shadows

Drama | Horror | Mystery Photobucket

Remake of: Dark Shadows (1966-71, TV show)

Release month: US ~ May | UK ~ May

Synopsis: A gothic-horror tale centering on the life of vampire Barnabas Collins and his run-ins with various monsters, witches, werewolves and ghosts. Based on the cult TV series.

In the year 1752, Joshua and Naomi Collins, with young son Barnabas, set sail from Liverpool, England to start a new life in America. But even an ocean was not enough to escape the mysterious curse that has plagued their family. Two decades pass and Barnabas (Johnny Depp) has the world at his feet-or at least the town of Collinsport, Maine. The master of Collinwood Manor, Barnabas is rich, powerful and an inveterate playboy…until he makes the grave mistake of breaking the heart of Angelique Bouchard (Eva Green). A witch, in every sense of the word, Angelique dooms him to a fate worse than death: turning him into a vampire, and then burying him alive. Two centuries later, Barnabas is inadvertently freed from his tomb and emerges into the very changed world of 1972. He returns to Collinwood Manor to find that his once-grand estate has fallen into ruin. The dysfunctional remnants of the Collins family have fared little better…

Stars: Johnny Depp as Barnabas, Helena Bonham Carter, Michelle Pfeiffer, Eva Green, Alice Cooper

Makers also worked on: Rango (2011), Inception (2010), Sleepy Hollow (1999)

News & Trivia: Directed by Tim Burton. Screenplay by Seth Grahame-Smith, author of Pride and Prejudice and Zombies and Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter, both of which are being turned into feature films. Currently in post-production.


Pick of the Lot:

DARK SHADOWS

This is the one I want to see. The infamous threesome of Tim Burton, his other half Helena Bonham-Carter and friend Johnny Depp are always up to something interesting. I loved Sleepy Hollow, it’s one of my favourites. I’ve also never seen the original TV show or any of the reincarnations since then which is perhaps why I’m looking forward to it the most. You see, I’m still quite fond of the original movies of Total Recall and Judge Dredd even though they’re not the best films and haven’t aged particularly well.

Battle of 2012: Snow White vs. Snow White

Mirror, Mirror

MARCH 2012

An evil queen steals control of a kingdom and an exiled princess enlists the help of seven resourceful rebels to win back her birthright.

Julia Roberts – Evil Queen
Lily Collins – Snow White
Sean Bean – The King
Also starring: Nathan Lane

vs.

Snow White and the Huntsman

JUNE 2012

In a twist to the fairy tale, the Huntsman ordered to take Snow White into the woods to be killed winds up becoming her protector and mentor in a quest to vanquish the Evil Queen.

Kristen Stewart – Snow White
Chris Hemsworth – The Huntsman
Charlize Theron – Queen Ravenna
Also starring: Ian McShane, Ray Winstone, Lily Cole, Bob Hoskins


The Winner?

SNOW WHITE AND THE HUNTSMAN

For me, this is the one I want to watch. Gothic, action-packed, exciting plus fantastic actors make this a must-watch movie. I can’t wait!

Game of Thrones Season Two Sneak Peek

A behind-the-scenes look at season 2 which premieres April 2012.

Review: Last Breath by Rachel Caine

There is a question Claire has long been asking: why do vampires live so far out in a sunny desert when they’re sensitive to sunlight? The reason doesn’t have to do with sunlight but water – and an ancient enemy who has finally found a way to invade the vampires’ landlocked community. Vampires aren’t the top predator on earth. There’s something worse that preys on them …something much worse. Which means if Claire, and Morganville, want to live, they will have to fight on to the last breath.

Last Breath (The Morganville Vampires #11) by Rachel Caine

Release Date: 29 October 2011
Read Date: 31 October 2011
Rating:

**Warning: This review contains SPOILERS!**

Gelatinous vampire goo. Gelatinous vampire goo. I can’t get over it. This is so…wrong. I’m hoping this new enemy is part of Caine’s endgame. We’ve had 11 books and perhaps she’s running out of ideas even though the final book, #15 is due out in November 2013. It certainly feels like the end run.

The Villains
A type of ultimate vampire, the Draug have a seductive call like sirens, need water to survive and breed, can reduce themselves to vampire goo which if you get any on you, will suck the blood/life out of you. They can remain invisible to the naked eye and easily traps their prey, human or vampire, storing them in water until they’re dead. On top of this, these guys are hard to kill.

Due to past encounters, Morganville’s vampires are so scared they plan to abandon the town and run. Of all things, I did not expect them to run from something they’d spent decades building. I understand a new foe was needed after the long awaited and much required death of Bishop but I did believe they’d learned to stand and fight rather than to submit to fear and flee. I was severely disappointed by Amelie’s response.

Amelie + Oliver
A kiss between them was to be expected though I didn’t expect Amelie to lose IQ points in the process. Killing Claire and Shane -not a good idea. I can’t believe Oliver had to step in and change her mind. Her manipulation of Myrnin when it came to this was appalling. Her actions destroyed previously strong relationships. Shane and Claire have been huge assets and her fear of this new enemy has turned her into a coward. That’s not what we’ve come to expect of her.

Oliver has always been in favour of fighting and in that respect he’s very like Shane (they wouldn’t react kindly to that comparison) but he balances out Amelie’s need to protect and retreat. They make a good ruling pair. I hope Amelie gets a magical cure for her fatal Draug bite because Oliver as sole ruler of Morganville would be terrifying.

The Wedding
Oh, the melodrama. Why do they have to get married right this minute? I understand the tenuous nature of their relationship due to Micheal’s undead status: unable to give Eve children and will most likely outlive her, remaining 18 forever but no one is stopping them from “living in sin”. I really didn’t care about the drama and political fallout from this mixed marriage between a human and a vamp. It ate up too many pages, boring me so much I kept putting the book down and avoiding picking it back up. If anything I’d have preferred someone kidnap Eve to try and turn her to end the prejudice, arguments and tears.

Main Character Death
I instantly knew this was a temporary predicament. A cheap move. A quick and quiet death with no one around to witness it. A few character’s reactions were notable though. Shane’s reaction was the most extreme but also quite understandable. He’d lost everyone he’d ever loved and he was tired of fighting when there nothing left to fight for. Claire was a reassuring presence in the Glass House, she ensured everyone kept their heads and made sound decisions, her diplomatic clout with the powers-that-be also ensured the Glass House members’ survival so her death would leave a huge hole in their lives.

It also became obvious why we get multiple POVs in this book which I think was done to better effect when it was just Claire and Shane in Bite Club. Here it added little in terms of character development but is required in order to get every side of the story.

Claire + Michael
Michael admits he once thought about Claire in a…romantic sense.

Claire + Myrnin
Claire discovers Myrnin does feel more than just friendship. It may or may not be love but he wants her as a permanent companion.

Claire + Shane
We leave them in a strong position. I can see these two marrying and spending the rest of their lives together. They have staying power. They work at their relationship, really work at it, and I think this makes them good role models for the teenage audience this is aimed at. Too many couples these days are only too willing to walk away when things get tough. However, I’m not a fan of the cringe-worthy mushiness Caine keeps shoving in our faces. They love each other, it shows. Please, don’t go overboard.

The Usual Humour, Excellent As Always
Myrnin pumping a sawed-off shotgun ‘with unsettling enthusiasm’ and calling “Let’s go hunting, shall we?”

Michael to Shane: “And you know if you screw it up with Claire, I’ll rip your throat out and drink you like a juice box.”

I admired Eve’s willingness to cut a bitch (i.e. Monica): “Micheal is missing. He may be dying. I am not in the mood for your shallow bullshit right now. If you get in my way, I will cut you, because you are nothing but a speed bump on my way to saving him. Are we clear?”

To Conclude…
Although I am a long term fan of this series this is the lowest rating I’ve given and the closest I’ve come to DNF-ing one of these books. I find this troubling considering we have four more books before the end.

I believe Caine’s heavy reliance on Bishop as a villian to bring ultimate fear to the residents of Morganville has left me distinctly unimpressed by this new foe despite their obviously lethal attributes.

For me, I think perhaps a threat from within would’ve provided more intrigue because we’ve done the “invasion by outsiders” thing with Bishop and to be honest it was done to death. Magnus appears to be Bishop with a new name.

In my opinion, Caine has taken the easy road by using predictable devices such as killing off a main character and magically reviving them, taking past situations and reusing them. If an author can’t come up with fresh stories then it’s time to stop producing them.

I still love the series. I’m determined to see it to the end but I hope Caine can inject fresh ideas into Black Dawn.

Included Short Story
In my UK edition there was a short story, “Anger Management” set between Bite Club and Last Breath from Shane’s POV, detailing Shane’s mandatory counselling with Dr. Theo Goldman, where he’s challenged to refrain from becoming angry and use non-violent methods whenever possible for 24 hours. It’s not a necessary read but it was enjoyable, especially his encounter with Monica.

____________________________________________

SNEAK PEEK


Sample chapters available HERE.

“Marriage is a big word for all guys,” Shane said. “You know that. It’s kind of an allergy. We get itchy and sweaty just trying to spell it, much less do it.”

View all my reviews

Get Ready for the Return of The Walking Dead

WooHoo, Baby!  Are You Ready for Season 2?!

 

If you just can’t wait until Sunday, there are other ways to get your zombie fix:

  • Catch the latest trailer with the Sheriff bustin’ some zombie heads like coconuts
  • Design your own zombie avatar with AMC’s ‘Spread the Dead’ application on Facebook
  • Check out their Sneak Peek (US only, unfortunately) video
  • Or the daily Webisodes
  • Pop over to HalloweenCostumes.com and find a wicked zombie getup for this year’s tricks-and-treats day
  • Try your hand at AMC’s ‘Ultimate Fan Trivia Game
  • Or crack some skulls in one of the games at ZombieGames.net
  • And, if you missed out on Season 1, don’t despair, you can catch up here
  • Finally, check out the new book!

The Walking Dead: Rise of the Governor  

In the Walking Dead universe, there is no greater villain than The Governor. The despot who runs the walled-off town of Woodbury, he has his own sick sense of justice: whether it’s forcing prisoners to battle zombies in an arena for the townspeople’s amusement, or chopping off the appendages of those who cross him. The Governor was voted “Villain of the Year” by Wizard magazine the year he debuted, and his story arc was the most controversial in the history of the Walking Dead comic book series. Now, for the first time, fans of The Walking Dead will discover how The Governor became the man he is, and what drove him to such extremes.

The Walking Dead: Rise of the Governor by Robert Kirkman, Jay Bonansinga,  Published October 11th 2011 by Thomas Dunne Books, is available for purchase at Amazon | BookDepository | B&N

Freaky Friday ~ Can Ya Dig It?!

Gotta love the slow jazzy feel of the 60’s mixed with futuristic sci-fi!

This flick looks like a splash from the past with a dash of the future.  I’m definitely diggin’ the ‘fro she’s sportin’.  This clip is for the movie, Soul Man, a CG animated sci-fi flick. The film is being developed by French director Guillaume Ivernel.  You can read more about this sci-fi-funk creator at BlacklightMovies.com or check out his IMDB page.


http://vimeo.com/29712832

(Via Blastr.com)

“The Secret Circle” Pilot Available Early @ iTunes

Watch the pilot for free @ iTunes

Cassie Blake was a happy, normal teenage girl – until her mother Amelia dies in what appears to be a tragic accidental fire. Orphaned and deeply saddened, Cassie moves in with her warm and loving grandmother Jane in the beautiful small town of Chance Harbor, Washington – the town her mother left so many years before – where the residents seem to know more about Cassie than she does about herself. As Cassie gets to know her high school classmates, including sweet-natured Diana and her handsome boyfriend Adam, brooding loner Nick, mean-girl Faye and her sidekick Melissa, strange and frightening things begin to happen. When her new friends explain that they are all descended from powerful witches, and they’ve been waiting for Cassie to join them and complete a new generation of the Secret Circle, Cassie refuses to believe them – until Adam shows her how to unlock her incredible magical powers. But it’s not until Cassie discovers a message from her mother in an old leather-bound book of spells hidden in her mother’s childhood bedroom, that she understands her true and dangerous destiny. What Cassie and the others don’t yet know is that darker powers are at play, powers that might be linked to the adults in the town, including Diana’s father and Faye’s mother – and that Cassie’s mother’s death might not have been an accident.

The Secret Circle is based on L. J. Smith‘s young adult trilogy by the same name. The show was well cast. I haven’t read the books, but the familiar (and some not so familiar) faces should prove to be a big draw. My favorite – Gale Harold, who I first fell in love with when he starred as Brian Kinney on the amazing series Queer as Folk, plays a baddie. He’s the father of Diana, who I’ve nicknamed Glenda, the good witch. Here’s a breakdown on the characters we’ve met so far.

Cassie Blake, 16 years old
— Mom, Amelia, deceased (died in fire “accident”)
— Dad, “a bad man”, deceased (died 16 yrs earlier in “accident”)
— Grandma, Jane
Nick Armstrong, “guy in the window”, Cassie’s neighbor
— Mom ?
— Dad ?
Adam Conant, Cassie’s “star mate”, but Diana’s boyfriend
— Mom, deceased (died 16 yrs earlier in “accident”)
— Dad, owns Boat House, a drunk, loved Cassie’s mom, she was his “star mate”
Diana Meade, appears to want to do the right thing
— Adam’s girlfriend
— Dad, Charles, powerful baddie
— Mom, deceased (died 16 yrs earlier in “accident”)
Faye Chamberlain, loves her the new strength of her powers, doesn’t want control
— Mom, HS principle, Dawn, working with Charles to “bring power”
— Dad, deceased (died 16 yrs earlier in “accident”)
Melissa, appears to be Faye’s follower
— Mom ?
— Dad ?

These six make up the “Secret Circle”. The five had some powers prior to Cassie’s arrival in town. But, since her arrival, their powers have increased. In the pilot, we find out that some sort of “accident” happened 16 years earlier. In that accident, each of them lost one parent. Diana tries to convince Cassie that she too is a witch. They all must bind their powers so they can learn to control them. Faye isn’t looking to control her powers, she’s reveling in them. But, her arrogance may just get the best of her. Adam’s dad tells Cassie how much he loved Amelia, “It was written in the stars …” they were meant to be together. But, her father came to town and everything changed. He also tells Cassie that she and Adam are fated to be together too. Que love triangle between Cassie – Adam – Diana. I really don’t like love triangles. But, we’ll see how this one plays out.

So, will you be watching? Have you read the trilogy? If so, let us know how the show compares to the books.

“May the odds be ever in your favor!” ~ Hunger Games Movie News

The Poster

Prepare to be wowed! Click on the poster below and it will take you to an absolutely stunning motion poster! You have to see it to believe it.

Entertainment Weekly ~ The Boys

We saw Jennifer Lawrence as Katniss in an issue of last month‘s Entertainment Weekly, this month we’ve got the boys 21-year-old Liam Hemsworth as Gale and 18-year-old Josh Hutcherson as Peeta.

[Source: Photos]

The Soundtrack

12-time Grammy winner T Bone Burnett (Cold Mountain, Walk the Line) will team up with award-winning composer Danny Elfman (have you seen a Tim Burton movie? Or any movie really, he’s done them all it seems) to produce the score and soundtrack to The Hunger Games.

A Message From Suzanne Collins (posted on Facebook)

“Now that the filming of The Hunger Games has begun, I’ve been getting a lot of questions about the script, so I thought I might share a little of my experience with you. Back in early 2010, Color Force and Lionsgate began the process of adapting the book to the screen and I wrote the first draft of the script. After that, we brought on veteran screenwriter Billy Ray to further develop the piece. Not only has he written and directed excellent films like Shattered Glass and Breach, he was a complete pleasure to work with. Amazingly talented, collaborative, and always respectful of the book. His adaptation further explored the world of Panem and its inhabitants. As though I wasn’t lucky enough, Oscar-nominated filmmaker Gary Ross, known for his wonderful works such as Seabiscuit and Pleasantville, came on board. As part of his creative process, he wrote a subsequent draft which incorporated his incredible directorial vision of the film. And then he very generously invited me in to work with him on it. We had an immediate and exhilarating creative connection that brought the script to the first day of shooting. Of course, the piece will naturally continue to evolve through the filming, as the actors bring the characters to life, as the entire crew brings their significant talents to the piece, as the editors work with Gary to best realize his vision. The final draft will be on the screen next March.

So that’s been the script process, and as an author, I’m truly grateful for the journey.

May the odds be ever in your favor!

Suzanne Collins