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Infinite Crisis: Villains United (Review)

This month I’m taking a look at DC’s massive “Infinite Crisis” Event. Although it was all published in one massive omnibus, I’ll be breaking down the lead-in to the series to tackle each thread individually, culminating in a review of the event itself. Check back for more.

I have to admit that, as a rule, I have a great deal of respect for DC’s massive event-related tie-ins. Rather than typically offering expanded or deleted scenes from the main crossover, the tie-ins to their gigantic crossovers will frequently serve as prologues or epilogues to new concepts and relaunches. With Final Crisis, for example, Legion of Three Worlds served as prelude to a rebooted Legion of Superheroes and Rogues’ Revenge offered something of a hint of Geoff Johns’ return to The Flash. Infinite Crisis: Villains United is no different. While nominally the story of evil Alexander Luthor Jr.’s evil Secret Society, it’s actually something of a stealth pilot for Gail Simone’s Secret Six, introducing the characters and the concepts that would define the series.

Just an average day at the House of Secrets…

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Batman and the Monster Men (Review)

To celebrate the release of The Dark Knight Rises, July is “Batman month” here at the m0vie blog. Check back daily for comics, movies and television reviews and discussion of the Caped Crusader.

I really liked both of Matt Wagner’s Dark Moon Rising miniseries, offering a modern retelling of two classic Golden Age Batman stories, fit within the context of the Caped Crusader’s early career. I honestly don’t think that we get enough Golden Age nostalgia within DC comics – the focus of the recent wave of revisionism seems to have been the decidedly wacky and zany Silver Age. Still, between this and Grant Morrison’s Action Comics, perhaps we can start a trend. This is a story transitioning between Frank Miller’s iconic Batman: Year One and Jeph Loeb’s slightly more colourful The Long Halloween, built on the idea that Batman inhabits a comic book world – too much “realism” or too heavy a focus on “gritty urban crime” might rob the character of some of his appeal.

He sure knows how to make an entrance…

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Ten Most Anticipated Movies of 2012

Enough with the best of 2011! That was so last year. Let’s instead reflect on some of the films I am most anticipating in the year ahead. As noted elsewhere, this is all just my opinion, so it’s bound to be a bit crazy and off-the-wall, but hopefully it’s interesting enough.

Hopefully, 2012 isn't a cinematic disaster...

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The Dark Knight Rises Trailer…

It’s officially on-line. The trailer of The Dark Knight Rises has, after a weekend of bootlegging, been officially released. It looks impressive, and gives us our first sense of anne Hathaway as Selina Kyle. If the theme is to reflect the recession (as much as The Dark Knight could have been said to reflect the war on terror), I imagine Selina will be quite important to the story. We’ve seen a lot of Bane, and there’s relatively little of him here. And, is that a bearded younger Bruce (back in his League of Shadows days) being told that the chant means “rise?” But enough crazy theories for now. I’ll have more of them later in the week.

In the mean time, enjoy. For more analysis, click here.

The Caped Social Crusader: The Dark Knight Rises and Batman’s History of Class Warfare…

With the leaked second trailer for The Dark Knight Rises, showing in theatres in front of Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows, it seems like we have a theme for the movie, something to connect Nolan’s final Batman film to the terrorism and liberty metaphor that underscored The Dark Knight. Giving our first real look at Selina Kyle, who I sense might be far more important to the film than Bane himself, despite her relative lack of exposure, it seems that the film will play into the sort of resentment and class divide forming in global society – the type of movement spawning the “Occupy Wall Street” and the “We are the 99%” campaigns. “You think this’ll last,” Selina taunts Bruce, in a scene that conjures Tim Burton’s underrated Batman Returns. “There’s a storm coming Mr. Wayne. You and your friends better batten down the hatches. Cause when it hits the city you are all gonna wonder how you could live so large and leave so little for the rest of us.”

It seems like a fascinating avenue for Nolan to explore, especially given that Batman is one of the “1%”himself. Still, it’s an angle rich for exploitation and with considerable history behind it.

The Bane of the upper classes?

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Five More Creative Ways to Make Green Lantern 2 A Better Film (Rather Than Just “Darker and Edgier”)…

Green Lantern was a disappointment. Along with Marvel’s Daredevil, the Green Lantern series has been perhaps the strongest mainstream superhero title published in the past decade, and Warner Brothers couldn’t manage to produce a decent film. This was supposed to be the company’s first superhero franchise outside of the tried-and-tested Batman and Superman properties, and it fell flat. Nevertheless, Warners have vowed to press on with the sequel, daring to produce a “darker and edgier” follow-up to the film. Ignoring the fact that not all superheroes need to be “darker and edgier”, it still ignores the fact that the problems with Martin Campbell’s would-be franchise launcher had very little to do with being too light or soft. Here are five pieces of advice that the executive would do well to take on board, before deciding to simply “go darker.”

The sequel... Dark Green Lantern...

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First look at Anne Hathaway’s Catwoman In The Dark Knight Rises! (And Thoughts…)

The first images of Catwoman from The Dark Knight Rises have been revealed, and – as with everything about the movie – they’re stirring a considerable amount of controversy. There’s an official still below and a photo of a stunt double in action below. I have to admit though, I genuinely love it.

Click to enlarge...

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