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Tuesday, May 31, 2016

Warcraft: The Beginning (Movie Review)

By: Matt Suzara

The Orcs found their world dying and the only way to save their kind is to invade Azeroth, a place where humans, dwarves and other creatures live in peace. As a destructive war waiting to happen, one Orc, Durotan (Toby Kebbell) tries to contact the humans and help the clans unite but their ambitious leader  Gul'dan (Daniel Wu) have some other plans in mind and forces everyone to follow his orders. From two opposing sides, two heroes set to march on and lead the way to save their home and their people.

Warcraft: The Beginning is sparked with glorious CG effects that are quite a treat on the first opening sequence. However, it's tiring and cartoonish in the long run making this film hard to enjoy in the latter parts. It is rich in story, but with a lot of undeveloped characters thrown in the mix, it is really hard to appreciate everything. It comes to a point where-in you wished you have a remote control inside the cinema to fast-forward everything and move-on to the good parts.

It is quite depressing that Director Duncan Jones couldn't capitalize on this project and make it exceptionally rewarding in like what he did to one of my personal favorite film "The Source Code." I admire his passion and dedication in this film, but it can't seem to hold up as became a big disappointment for this summer Blockbuster season.

Overall, Warcraft: The Beginning has a lot to offer on the table but can't seem to hold everything in place. It can't make your trip to the cinema enjoyable as everything seems to fall apart even if you really want to appreciate the effort that is put into it.

Lakwatsera Lovers rates it 3 out of 10 stars  

Cast: Travis Fimmel, Ben Foster, Toby Kebbell

Directed by: Duncan Jones
Distributed by: UIP PH
Now Showing in cinemas nationwide 

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Mother & Daughter Haunted By Evil Spirits in “THE CONJURING 2”

Every parent’s greatest fear is seeing their child in pain. But what if that child’s source of pain is indescribable, unreachable, and may not even be real? In Warner Bros. Pictures' new horror thriller “The Conjuring 2,” it becomes clear for Peggy Hodgson, that something supremely evil has permeated her London home and infiltrated her own daughter, Janet. It’s equally clear that there seems to be absolutely nothing she can do to protect her family.

British actress Frances O’Connor, who portrays the overwhelmed Peggy, says, “She’s a single mum with four kids living in a council house, so at the start of the film, life’s already pretty tough. She’s got no money and her husband’s not paying any support, so there’s a lot of strain within the house. Pretty quickly some small, paranormal things happen and Peggy is so stressed she doesn’t even see that it’s there.”

Until slowly, things begin to escalate. “One night, she is finally confronted by it when the girls’ wardrobe just slams across the room and hits a door. And from there it just gets much worse.”

O’Connor was aware of the incidents at the real Hodgson home at the time they occurred. “I’d read the stories and seen those pictures of the girls levitating, that kind of thing, and found it quite terrifying. There was a lot of documentation. So when the script came to me, I was interested in telling that story.”

In casting the part of the haunted daughter, director James Wan admits, “I think the hardest role to cast was Janet Hodgson, to find a young actress who could really capture the vulnerability of what this 11-year-old girl went through, and I’ve got to say, we are so fortunate to have found Madison Wolfe.”

With so much of the film’s believability riding on her portrayal of a possessed young girl, he adds, “She was able to play Janet’s innocence and naiveté at the beginning, but then slowly change her as she becomes more affected—and infected—by this entity that’s living in her house.”

Wolfe says modestly of her character, “I think she’s very smart and a sweet girl, but when these things start happening to her, it affects her a lot, like it would anybody.”

Vera Farmiga easily sings her young costar’s praises. “Maddy Wolfe is very impressive, very savvy, for such a young age. She has so much stamina, and she went inward and downward into these cavernous depths of negativity, yet she’s really a lighthearted and joyful child. It was quite surprising to watch because she’d go deep in a take and then just snap out of it and talk clinically about it to James, and then go right back into it. It’s just a very finely tuned instrument that she has and in my opinion her performance is nothing short of astounding.”

Patrick Wilson had worked with Wolfe previously, though her performance—including her English accent—were so good he didn’t realize it was the same actress at the script read-through. “I kept thinking she might be a girl in my son’s school, that she was the British counterpart of this other child I’ve seen,” he recalls. “But then, at the end of the reading, she told me she’d played my daughter in another film, and out comes this Louisiana accent! Granted, we didn’t have a lot of scenes together in the earlier film and it was a few years before, but her accent for this film was so good I had no idea she wasn’t English.”

  Opening across the Philippines on Thursday, June 09, “The Conjuring 2” is a New Line Cinema presentation and will be distributed by Warner Bros. Pictures. 

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With the hit comedies “Dodgeball” and “We’re the Millers” to his credit, Rawson Marshall Thurber, director of Universal Pictures' new action comedy “Central Intelligence,” was looking to expand his filmmaking repertoire by incorporating a run of action in his next film.

I’ve loved action movies my whole life and I’ve been wanting to make one since I was about, oh, eight years old,” Thurber says. “This has been a lot of fun.”

Rawson really understands tone and timing,” Kevin Hart says. “It’s not just the rhythm of the action, it’s how everything meshes. The segues are seamless, the writing is smart, and there were small moments that we were allowed to make big moments because we had a great cast to work with and Rawson gave us the room to play.”

Opening across the Philippines on June 15, “Central Intelligence” follows a one-time bullied geek who grew up to be a lethal CIA agent (Dwayne Johnson), coming home for his high-school reunion. Claiming to be on a top-secret case, he enlists the help of the former “big man on campus” (Hart), now an accountant who misses his glory days. But before the staid numbers-cruncher realizes what he’s getting into, it’s too late to get out, as his increasingly unpredictable new friend drags him through a world of shoot-outs, double-crosses and espionage that could get them both killed in more ways than he can count.

Thurber also wrote the film’s screenplay, with Ike Barinholtz & David Stassen.

As the movie opens, Johnson’s character is introduced in flashback as a hopelessly uncool high schooler with the unfortunate moniker of Robbie Weirdicht. A supersized kid with a gentle soul, he’s easy prey to campus bullies, and is forced to drop out after the irreparable humiliation of being hurled, naked, into center court at a school pep rally.

At the same time, Hart’s character, Calvin – aka The Golden Jet – is Central High’s top athlete and all-around reigning superstar, a guy for whom the sky was the limit and everybody’s best bet for most likely to succeed.

Twenty years later, no one is cashing in on that bet. A risk-averse accountant stuck on the middle rung of the corporate ladder and commanding zero respect from his colleagues, Calvin takes harsh stock of himself as his high school reunion looms: a dead-end job, a marriage on life support and a humdrum existence that hasn’t lived up to its promise. Meanwhile, the doughy loser everyone wrote off as Weird Robbie appears to have successfully reinvented himself as Bob, a confident charmer with a rock-hard physique, the skills and instincts of a CIA operative, and an exciting life that Calvin can only imagine.

In truth, they were never really friends. But that’s how Bob remembers it, based on Calvin’s single act of kindness at that awful rally – offering his letterman jacket for Bob to cover up – and it’s a fine point that nice-guy Calvin is certainly not going to press now that they’re adults and Bob invites him for a beer a couple of days prior to the big reunion. What harm could it to do to spend an evening catching up?

Within hours, Bob’s seemingly casual request for Calvin to analyze some financial data takes a suspicious turn, leading his former classmate into a labyrinth of underground transactions, and a high-stakes plot over stolen encryption codes for the U.S. spy satellite system that could threaten global security.

While his superiors believe Bob is behind this scheme and are trying to bring him in, Bob claims to be tracking the real villain, code-named Black Badger. And despite Calvin’s vigorous denials that he has anything to do with any of this, his home and office are soon invaded by gun-wielding agents; he’s threatened, chased and shot at, and suddenly his life depends upon how fast he can move and how close he can stick to a guy he now wishes he’d never laid eyes on.

  Central Intelligence” is distributed by United International Pictures through Columbia Pictures.
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Emilia Clarke Finds Love in “ME BEFORE YOU”

British actress Emilia Clarke takes a 360-degree turn from her famous Mother of Dragons character, Daenerys, in “Game of Thrones” to portray the wide-eyed, endearing Louisa, in New Line Cinema’s heart-tugging romance, “Me Before You.”

What drew me to this movie were the words of Jojo Moyes, the book first and then the script,” explains Clarke. “I was hooked on page one and so excited to play a character with such charm and sincerity, who is so authentically and brilliantly British, and with such a lovely arc in her story.”

With no clear direction in her life, quirky and creative Lou works hard as a waitress in a small café in order to help her family make ends meet. “Louisa is a happy-go-lucky, very content girl,” observes Clarke of her character. “When we first meet her, she is working at The Buttered Bun Café, serving tea and scones. She’s very good at it, she loves the clientele, and we see she’s a sweet kind of caring girl who just wants to do well.”

But times are tough and Lou is let go. Knowing her income is as crucial as her skill set is minimal, she tells her local job placement agent that she’ll happily try anything. Her naturally cheery outlook is put to the test, however, when she faces her newest career challenge as caregiver and companion to Will Traynor. A once robust young man, he became wholly dependent on others due to an accident two years prior, and his whole world changed dramatically in the blink of an eye.

Director Thea Sharrock says, “Lou lives with her parents, her sister, her grandpa and her nephew in a very small house in a very small town. But her mum doesn’t have a job, Granddad doesn’t have a job, and Dad now doesn’t have a job, so her small income is a very big deal. Yet her outlook remains a sunny one.”

To find an actress who could play positive under pressure, the filmmakers cast a wide net. “We saw hundreds of girls, and I had Skyped with Emilia about the role, but I can honestly say that when she walked in to audition and did her first scene, it was literally like Lou was in the room,” Sharrock recalls. “There was no question. Her energy was exactly right; like Lou, she was just a breath of fresh air.”

Clarke had an easy rapport with the first-time feature director. “Thea is just the greatest, I love her. You’d never, ever, know that this was her first film,” she declares. “It’s a testimony to her intelligence, her integrity and her work ethic that working on this project, with its very tricky subject matter, felt almost effortless. She was so giving and always had a smile and a laugh to put us at ease, and that trickled down to everyone. I never felt like I was working.”

Based on the critically acclaimed, bestselling novel by Jojo Moyes, New Line Cinema’s and Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Pictures’ “Me Before You” stars Emilia Clarke (“Game of Thrones”) and Sam Claflin (“The Hunger Games” movies), under the direction of renowned theatre director Thea Sharrock, making her feature film directorial debut.

Oftentimes you find love where you least expect it. Sometimes it takes you where you never expected to go…

When Louisa Clark—Lou, as she’s known—unexpectedly loses her waitressing job she must scramble to replace the income that her tight-knit family depends upon. Desperation drives her to take a job as a caregiver to Will Traynor, a man who used to be a wealthy banker with an adventurous soul, living life to the very fullest, but for whom those days are in the past. After a tragic accident, Will lost the desire to live and now keeps everyone at a distance with his caustic, overbearing attitude. But unlike his family, Lou refuses to tiptoe around him or cater to his moods. In fact, her sparkling personality and easy nature are hard for even Will to ignore, and soon enough each becomes exactly what the other needs.

  Set for release across the Philippines on June 15, “Me Before You” is distributed by Warner Bros. Pictures, a Warner Bros. Entertainment company.

The film's Original Motion Picture Soundtrack will be available to download/stream via digital stores starting June 3. Get the CD for only Php 459.00 at Astroplus/Astrovision stores starting June 10.
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Composer Thomas New Man, Sia Provide `UNFORGETTABLE' Music For “FINDING DORY”

Disney-Pixar's “Finding Dory” welcomes back to the big screen Dory, friends Marlin and Nemo—and composer Thomas Newman. “To me, he was one of the cast members of ‘Finding Nemo,’” says director Andrew Stanton. “We formed a close relationship ever since, and now that he is behind the score for ‘Finding Dory,’ it fees like the last member of the family has arrived at the reunion.”

According to Stanton, scoring a film like “Finding Dory” with a composer like Newman takes the films to places he has yet to imagine. “It forces me to have to really explain out loud what my intentions are. It can lead to very intense conversation between the two of us. But I get so much out of it. I end up understanding my movie ten times better—it’s almost therapy for me. We just click.”

There was no way I could not do “Finding Dory,” says Newman, who was nominated for an Oscar® for his work on “Finding Nemo” and won a Grammy® (best song written for motion picture, television or other visual media) on Stanton’s “WALL•E.” “It’s ironic that a movie about fish—some in aquariums, some in open water—has such a huge range of emotive possibilities—from the hysterical to the deeply profound and primally frightening. That’s exciting to ponder musically.”

According to Newman, the score is designed to support the film’s big themes of loss and the characters’ efforts to conquer their individual shortcomings. It also showcases the deeper, less sunny side of Dory’s personality. “Dory’s theme has a certain amount of quirkiness and a certain amount of sadness built in,” says the composer.

The goal, says Newman, is to complement the story. “If there’s humor or pathos, I want to bring it out, but I don’t want to re-describe it. I just want to underline it. I want to make it more of what it already is.

I liken music to makeup on a face,” continues Newman. “At its worst, it’s garish and overdone. At its best, you don’t notice it and it brings out the best qualities.”
Singer-songwriter Sia is on board “Finding Dory,” performing the film’s end-credit song, “Unforgettable.” (Watch Sia sing “Unforgettable” for the first time below)

American songwriter Irving Gordon wrote the song in 1951, and in 1992 won a Grammy® for it when Natalie Cole included the tribute to her late father on her album of duets. “Unforgettable” remains revered worldwide today.

Five-time Grammy® nominee Sia agreed to sing the song when the voice of Dory herself made the request. “Dory's story makes me teary,” says Sia. “When Ellen asked me, I couldn't refuse!”

Director Andrew Stanton has long been a fan of the native Australian performer. “In the same way Robbie Williams did his own unique twist on a classic song for ‘Finding Nemo,’ Sia captures the soulful truth of the Nat King Cole classic ‘Unforgettable,’ and makes it all her own,” said Stanton. “They are a perfect complement to one another, just like the two films.”

Disney•Pixar's “Finding Dory” finds Dory living happily in the reef with Marlin and Nemo about a year after their life-changing adventure. When Dory suddenly remembers that she has a family out there who may be looking for her, she recruits Marlin and Nemo for a life-changing adventure across the ocean to California’s prestigious Marine Life Institute (MLI), a rehabilitation center and aquarium.

In the effort to find her mom and dad, Dory enlists the help of three of the MLI’s most intriguing residents: Hank, a cantankerous octopus who frequently gives employees the slip; Bailey, a beluga whale who is convnced his biological sonar skills are on the fritz; and Destiny, a nearsighted whale shark.

Deftly navigating the complex inner workings of the MLI, Dory and her friends discover the magic within their flaws, friendships and family.

  Finding Dory” swims into Philippine theaters on Thursday, June 16. The film is distributed by Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures International through Columbia Pictures. Follow the official social media accounts of Disney in the Philippines, namely, (FB) WaltDisneyStudiosPH, (Twitter) @disneystudiosph and (Instagram) @waltdisneystudiosph and use the hashtag #FindingDoryPH.

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“THE ACCOUNTANT” Teaser Poster Shows Affleck Gunning For Action

The teaser poster for Warner Bros. Pictures’ new suspense thriller “The Accountant” has been released, showing Oscar winner Ben Affleck (“Argo,” “Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice”) holding a rifle, but “blinded” by numerical data.

Directed by Gavin O’Connor (“Warrior”), “The Accountant” tells the story of Christian Wolff (Affleck), a math savant with more affinity for numbers than people.  Behind the cover of a small-town CPA office, he works as a freelance accountant for some of the world’s most dangerous criminal organizations.  With the Treasury Department’s Crime Enforcement Division, run by Ray King (J.K. Simmons), starting to close in, Christian takes on a legitimate client: a state-of-the-art robotics company where an accounting clerk (Anna Kendrick) has discovered a discrepancy involving millions of dollars.  But as Christian uncooks the books and gets closer to the truth, it is the body count that starts to rise.

The Accountant” also stars Oscar nominee Anna Kendrick (“Up in the Air,” “Pitch Perfect”), Oscar winner J.K. Simmons (“Whiplash,” the “Spider-Man” films), Jon Bernthal (“Fury,” “The Wolf of Wall Street”), Jean Smart (TV’s “Fargo,” “24”), and Cynthia Addai-Robinson (“Star Trek: Into Darkness”), with Jeffrey Tambor (TV’s “Transparent,” “The Hangover” films) and two-time Oscar nominee John Lithgow (“Interstellar”).

O’Connor directed the film from a screenplay by Bill Dubuque (“The Judge”). 

Opening across the Philippines on Nov. 02, “The Accountant” is distributed by Warner Bros. Pictures, a Warner Bros. Entertainment company.

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Monday, May 30, 2016

“STAR TREK BEYOND” Beams Up Five Posters

Paramount Pictures' third installment of the J.J. Abrams-produced "Star Trek” film franchise has gone above and “Beyond" for four of its characters, giving them their own individual one-sheets, in addition to a new international teaser poster. The film opens across the Philippines on July 20.

Getting the star treatment are new character Jaylah (Sofia Boutella) and returning favorites Spock (Zachary Quinto), Bones (Karl Urban) and Chekov (Anton Yelchin).

The highly anticipated next installment in the globally popular Star Trek franchise, created by Gene Roddenberry and reintroduced by J.J. Abrams in 2009, returns with director Justin Lin (“The Fast and the Furious” franchise) at the helm of this epic voyage of the U.S.S. Enterprise and her intrepid crew. In “Beyond," the Enterprise crew explores the furthest reaches of uncharted space, where they encounter a mysterious new enemy who puts them and everything the Federation stands for to the test.

"Star Trek Beyond" reunites Jon Cho, Simon Pegg, Chris Pine, Zachary Quinto, Zoe Saldana, Karl Urban and Anton Yelchin. Idris Elba, Sofia Boutella, Lydia Wilson and Joe Taslim are joining the cast. The film's writers are Roberto Orci & John D. Payne & Patrick Mckay; and Douglas Jung & Simon Pegg.

Star Trek Beyond” is distributed by United International Pictures through Columbia Pictures.
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Paramount Pictures, Nickelodeon Movies and IMAX Corporation announced recently that “TEENAGE MUTANT NINJA TURTLES: OUT OF THE SHADOWS,” the latest installment in the blockbuster franchise, will be digitally re-mastered into the immersive IMAX® format and released in all IMAX® 3D theaters across the Philippines beginning June 1st (simultaneous with its bow in 2D and 3D cinemas).  

Leonardo, Raphael, Donatello and Michelangelo return to theaters this summer in “TEENAGE MUTANT NINJA TURTLES: OUT OF THE SHADOWS” to battle bigger, badder villains alongside April O’Neil (Megan Fox), Vern Fenwick (Will Arnett), and a newcomer: the hockey-masked vigilante Casey Jones (Stephen Amell). After super villain Shredder (Brian Tee) escapes custody, he joins forces with mad scientist Baxter Stockman (Tyler Perry) and two dimwitted henchmen, Bebop (Gary Anthony Williams) and Rocksteady (WWE Superstar “Sheamus”), to unleash a diabolical plan to take over the world. As the Turtles prepare to take on Shredder and his new crew, they find themselves facing an even greater evil with similar intentions: the notorious Krang.

We are pleased to collaborate once again with our long-time friend and partner Michael Bay, as well as the entire team at Paramount, in offering international audiences the opportunity to see ‘TEENAGE MUTANT NINJA TURTLES: OUT OF THE SHADOWS’ in IMAX® 3D,” said Greg Foster, Senior Executive Vice President, IMAX Corp. and CEO of IMAX Entertainment. “This latest installment raises the bar in an already highly entertaining and imaginative franchise, and we believe the film fits right in with a robust overseas IMAX summer line-up.”

From Paramount Pictures and Nickelodeon Movies. Produced by Michael Bay, p.g.a., Andrew Form, p.g.a., Brad Fuller, p.g.a., Galen Walker and Scott Mednick. Based on the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles characters created by Peter Laird and Kevin Eastman. Written by Josh Appelbaum & André Nemec. Directed by Dave Green. Starring Megan Fox, Will Arnett, Laura Linney, Stephen Amell, Noel Fisher, Jeremy Howard, Pete Ploszek, Alan Ritchson, Brian Tee and Tyler Perry.

The IMAX® 3D release of “TEENAGE MUTANT NINJA TURTLES: OUT OF THE SHADOWS” will be digitally re-mastered into the image and sound quality of The IMAX Experience® with proprietary IMAX DMR® (Digital Re-mastering) technology. The crystal-clear images, coupled with IMAX’s customized theatre geometry and powerful digital audio, create a unique environment that will make audiences feel as if they are in the movie.

  Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Out of the Shadows” is distributed in the Philippines by United International Pictures through Columbia Pictures.

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Tom Hanks in The Face of Recession in “A HOLOGRAM FOR THE KING”

Award-winning actor and filmmaker Tom Hanks stars in “A Hologram for the King” set in recession-ravaged 2010 as an American businessman named Alan Clay adapted from the book of the same title by acclaimed author Dave Eggers.

Hanks’ role in the movie is a broke, depressed and freshly divorced man who arrives in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia to close what he hopes will be the deal of a lifetime. His mission: sell a state-ofthe-art holographic teleconferencing system to the Saudi government.  Adrift and alone in an unfamiliar land, Alan befriends taxi driver Yousef (Alexander Black), who chauffeurs him through the desert to the “King’s Metropolis of Economy and Trade,” a surreal ghost town of vacant skyscrapers and half-completed construction projects. Baffled by the bureaucratic reception he gets at the so-called “Welcome Center,” Alan struggles to figure out why his small IT support team is being forced to spend its days in a sweltering tent as it preps for the big presentation. Worse, because of the Saudi way of doing business, he’s unclear if the king will ever show up for the long-scheduled meeting.

Clay arrives in Saudi Arabia without any prior knowledge of the place, other than his own cartoonish, stereotypical concept, according to Hanks.  “Though he’s not a happy guy, when Alan tries to sell the upbeat nature of the 3-D hologram and rally his team, he becomes this other guy, the former Alan Clay, a man with energy and vibrancy. That’s where the comedy comes from.” 

In addition to emphasizing the book’s humor, Tykwer bolstered the romantic elements as he translated Eggers’ story from page to screen. “The longer I worked on the script, the more profound the love story became because it connects to this whole third-act decision where the movie becomes a more optimistic tale,” Tykwer says.  Alan is coaxed out of his funk by Zahra Hakem, an alluring, talented surgeon portrayed by London-born Sarita Choudhury. In her role as CIA Division Chief Saul Berenson’s long-suffering wife Mira on the Emmy-winning series “Homeland,” the half-Indian, half-English actress developed an avid following that included Hanks himself. “I remember seeing Sarita for the first time on ‘Homeland’ and thinking, ‘Alright, I don’t know who she is, but that  woman is riveting. I don’t know where she comes from but I can’t take my eyes off her.”

In Hollywood’s finest black-comedy tradition, “A Hologram for the King delivers laughs spiked with bittersweet undertones. “We’ve made a crisis comedy that points the finger at the fact that our economic structure is falling apart and the apocalypse seems to be looming just around the corner,” Tykwer says. “We use comedy as a tool to embrace tragedy like a balloon you stick with a needle so it explodes and the energy that comes out is cheerful. Despite all of Alan’s problems, I hope this movie cheers people up.”

For Hanks, who’s earned iconic status and five Academy Award® nominations by playing regular, good-hearted Americans who triumph overhard luck circumstances, A Hologram for the King is the story of a man who stumbles upon an emotional and spiritual oasis after wandering in the desert. “Why make a movie about a guy where nothing ever works out for him? That might work fantastically as a piece of literature but as far as the cinema goes, the story requires this other thing — for want of a better word, let’s just call it hope.”      


 “A Hologram for the King” opens June 1 in cinemas from OctoArts Films International.

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Friday, May 27, 2016

Director James Wan Terrifies Audiences Again With “THE CONJURING 2”

In 1970, demonologists Ed and Lorraine Warren battled a malevolent presence that permeated a remote farmhouse in the US—a case brought to the screen in 2013 in Wan’s hugely successful “The Conjuring.” Then came the most highly publicized case of their careers, Amityville, which would nearly destroy them.

This June, writer/director/producer James Wan seeks to terrify moviegoers once again with his depiction of another highly publicized case involving the real-life horrors experienced by paranormal investigators Ed and Lorraine Warren with “The Conjuring 2.”

It’s late 1977 when, with the effects of Amityville still haunting them, the Warrens come out of a self-imposed sabbatical and travel to northern London to take on a vile demonic entity that has taken root in the home of the Hodgson family, in the populous borough of Enfield. What is thought by many to be a hoax will become the most documented case in paranormal history.

Everything Ed and Lorraine have been through since we met them in the first film has been leading up to Enfield,” Wan states. “Out of the repertoire of cases they investigated over their lifetime, Enfield is one of the most compelling…and frightening. It’s also one of the most interesting in that in many ways it is a reflection of the Amityville haunting, so in the film we touch on that as well.”

This was the first time I’ve ever worked on a script that was based on a true story,” offers Johnson, who had been eager to work with Wan for some time. “I’ve always been a horror fan, but what was really interesting to me was that this was not only true, but there was so much publicity surrounding this case at the time, and so many witnesses. Even the police had filed reports; this wasn’t just one or two people or an isolated family saying what had happened.”

Chad Hayes states, “This was such a powerful story about a real family falling apart. The father’s gone, the mother’s doing everything to make ends meet, and then this happens. Even after all of our research, it’s just…unimaginable…but it’s true.”

We could see that even with all that Ed and Lorraine went through after Amityville, like being accused of being charlatans,” Carey Hayes observes, “seeing young Janet accused of that as well gave Lorraine something to identify with and Ed something to defend, beyond their usual compassion for families having these kinds of troubles.”

All these years later, Lorraine Warren still vividly recalls the fear she felt immediately upon arrival at the Hodgsons’ home and on first glimpsing the peril the family was experiencing. “I could see the girls were in two beds. Then they levitated, they crisscrossed in the air, and the girls screamed. I knew I needed to help them.”

  Opening across the Philippines on June 09, 2016, “The Conjuring 2” is a New Line Cinema presentation and will be distributed by Warner Bros. Pictures. 

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Ratchet and Clank: Movie Review

By: Matt Suzara

Drek (Paul Giamatti) and Dr. Nefarious (Armin Shimerman) has a villainous plan - to build a new planet with the help of their powerful weapon called as "Deplanitizer." This raised the concern of the Galactic Rangers who badly needs another member in their group to maintain peace and order to the entire galaxy. The rangers set a try out for the slot, and a Lombax mechanic Ratchet (James Arnold Taylor) was unfortunately turned down. However, when a defect robot escaped from Drek's factory, Ratchet found a new companion in Clank (David Kaye) who knows the impending plans of Drek that may cause total mass destruction to the entire galaxy. Soon, Rachet must find a way to warn the rangers and prove himself that he is indeed worthy to be a part of the team. 

Ratchet and Clank is another harmless animation that may entertain kids but might annoy their accompanied adults inside the cinema. It is based on a Playstation game that I never played before so it's really hard for me to say if it followed the material from the game. The animation was fine and the characters are solid at times, but they can't seem to deliver a promising story to make the entire thing memorable. It lacked some inspiration to make the story captivating. 

The story is also rushed as it fell short in giving lessons for kids or providing the younger audiences with something they could cheer about after leaving the cinema. It also confused on what story line to take as it jumps from different directions. The voice casts were terrific, but any of those solid actors didn't leave a great impression in their character.  

Overall, Ratchet and Clank had its moments in bringing an enjoyable animated film. However, it fails to deliver something special to make the entire thing stand out. There is life somewhere in the film, but it just can't seem to leave a meaningful impact to its viewers. 

Lakwatsera Lovers rates it 4.5 out of 10 stars

Cast: James Arnold Taylor, David Kaye, Bella Thorne

Directed by:  Kevin Munroe, Jericca Cleland
Distributed by: OctoArts Films and International
Now Showing in cinemas Nationwide  

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Thursday, May 26, 2016

Fil-Am Stunt Experts Choreograph Fight Scenes in “NINJA TURTLES 2”

Action is the operative word when it comes to the four brother Turtles, but the filmmakers of “Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Out of the Shadows” are careful to intersperse every skirmish with humor.

"Fun energy," as director Dave Green likes to call it. "It's important that the audience feels that the Turtles are always in danger," he says. "But at the most serious or scary moments, we often have a joke to punctuate that moment just to give you relief from the tension. Jojo is brilliant at that."

Green is referring to Filipino-American stunt coordinator Jonathan Eusebio, known on set as Jojo, who designed the fight scenes for the 2014 film. This time around, he brought fellow Fil-Am veteran multi-martial artist Jon Valera to help in training and articulating much of the action in the film.

Eusebio and his team begin by planning and working out the action in a warehouse, videotaping the sequences using stuntmen in place of actors, to give filmmakers and idea of what they have in mind. Once they receive notes, Eusebio and Valera refine their routine and begin working with talent to prepare them for filming.

"The biggest challenge on sequels is always to try and out do the original, whether in magnitude of the action or the complexity of the story," says Eusebio. "We tried things we didn’t get to do on the original, but at the same time preserved the fun and humor of the Turtles' camaraderie. We listened to feedback from the previous movie and fans can expect something even bigger and better this time around."

Given that Eusebio had trained the actors who played the Turtles for the first movie, Noel Fisher (Michaelangelo), Pete Ploszek (Leonardo), Jeremy Howard (Donatello) and Alan Ritchson (Raphael) had a foundation from which to begin learning new moves for the sequel.

"Even though the guys appear more often in this film, they actually trained less than they did on the previous movie," says Eusebio. "On the first movie there was a learning curve when to use the actor’s movements and when to use their stunt double’s movements. We figured out how to be more efficient and save time in terms of scheduling. Stunts and visual effects handle the bulk of the action movements for the Turtles."

Eusebio’s team had also developed a shorthand with Megan Fox from their work on the previous film. "Megan isn’t afraid to get into the thick of things and she's always willing to do as much as she can," he says.

To the film's benefit, Eusebio and Valera were able to spend a significant amount of rehearsal time with actor Stephen Amell. They credit his experience on his television series “Arrow” for his ability to learn the moves quickly.

"It was always a cognizant decision to make Stephen's version of Casey Jones handle the action differently than his Oliver Queen/Green Arrow character on Arrow," says Eusebio.  "Unlike the Green Arrow, Casey is not a proficient martial artist, his movements are bigger and not as refined. He wins fights and gets out of situations incidentally rather than by using a methodical and well-planned design."

When it came to a big stunt piece in which Casey must skate through a treacherous escape route while taunting his pursuers, Amell was determined to perform the action himself.

"One day Stephen looked at me and said, 'You know I can skate?'" recalls producer Andrew Form. "I knew he played ice hockey and I cautioned him that he would be skating through cars, chased by moving vehicles. He said, 'Get me some roller blades,' so we did. I have to say, the guy can skate. Stephen didn't want anyone doing his stuff, so pretty much every stunt, every time you see Casey, from his foot on the gas pedal, his hands on the steering wheel to fighting or zigzagging through a crowded garage, it's Stephen."

Michelangelo, Donatello, Leonardo, and Raphael return to Philippine cinemas on June 1st  in “Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Out of the Shadows” to battle bigger, badder villains, alongside April O’Neil (Megan Fox), Vern Fenwick (Will Arnett), and a newcomer: the hockey-masked vigilante Casey Jones (Stephen Amell).

After supervillain Shredder (Brian Tee) escapes custody, he joins forces with mad scientist Baxter Stockman (Tyler Perry) and two dimwitted henchmen, Bebop (Gary Anthony Williams) and Rocksteady (WWE Superstar Stephen “Sheamus” Farrelly), to unleash a diabolical plan to take over the world. As the Turtles prepare to take on Shredder and his new crew, they find themselves facing an even greater evil with similar intentions: the notorious Krang.

Earth to Echo” filmmaker Dave Green directs from a script by Josh Appelbaum & André Nemec.  The producers  are Michael Bay, Andrew Form, Brad Fuller, Galen Walker and Scott Mednick.

  Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Out of the Shadows” is distributed in the Philippines by United International Pictures through Columbia Pictures.

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