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Watch! New Star Trek: Into Darkness International Trailer!

The release of Star Trek: Into Darkness is getting closer and closer. So Paramount have released a new international trailer for the highly anticipated sequel. It has everything. Hints about the character played by Benedict Cumberbatch… who might actually be an original character, or at least not a notable pre-existing one! Peter Weller being all stern and awesome! (Although it does make me worry about the absence of Bruce Greenwood.) Anger! Explosions! Uniforms that look like affectionate nods to the decidedly seventies design seen only in Star Trek: The Motion Picture! Cumberbatch being ominously evil! Gratuitous shots of Alice Eve in her underwear, for some reason! Truly something for everyone.

We’ll be doing a whole month of Star Trek related fun to celebrate the release in May, so check back then for more!

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Non-Review Review: The Dark Knight Returns, Part I

Frank Miller’s The Dark Knight Returns might just be the most influential Batman comic ever written. It offers a glimpse an alternate future where Batman has retired as Gotham’s protector, and where a new wave of violence brings him back out of that retirement. It is also, and perhaps more notably, a study of the character’s psychology. It’s notable for suggesting that Bruce Wayne’s obsessions might be ultimately self-destructive and that there’s a primal conflict between the “Batman” part of his persona and Bruce Wayne. Like Watchmen, it’s generally recognised as one of the comics that represented a maturity in the medium.

Warner Brothers have produced an animated adaptation of Frank Miller’s classic, and I can’t help but admire it a great deal. While Alan Moore’s Watchmen was a novel that never really lent itself to film, Miller’s The Dark Knight Returns always had a cinematic quality that I think director Jay Oliva captures remarkably well.

A dark and stormy knight…

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Animated Dark Knight Returns Trailer

This seems an appropriate note on which to close out a month of Batman coverage to celebrate The Dark Knight Rises.

Warner Brothers’ superb animated department are doing an animated adaptation of Frank Miller’s The Dark Knight Returns, one of the truly iconic Batman stories. Really, it’s great. And they’ve assembled a pretty neat cast, including Peter Weller (Robocop) as the Dark Knight himself. They are, unfortunately, splitting the movie into two seventy-minute chunks (rather than one one-hundred-and-twenty-minute film), but it looks like they’ve done a good job capturing the look and feel.

The Batman themed adaptations have (generally) been the strongest entries in the series, so I’m cautiously optimistic.

Non-Review Review: Robo-Cop

I think Robocop might be on the shortlist of most influential B-movies ever made. Certainly, coming out of the eighties, I think that Robocop defined what an audience expected from an incorporated future – the notion that big business would eventually replace local government in the lives of citizens. It’s not a novel theme, it’s one that science-fiction has been throwing out for decades, but I think that Robocop almost redefined that argument. It’s hard not to detect the influence of the film in a lot of movies that followed, so effortless and all-consuming was the “not too distant future” presented by Verhoeven.

I wonder if that's a manual or an automatic...

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