From deep in the heart of London’s Soho, thoughts from the manager. Plex has worked in the industry for a decade and if you can stand the occasional rant, you might find an occasional interesting angle. And get involved, he’ll answer back.
Venture capitalist Hunter Walk has an idea that he thinks will change the theatrical experience forever. Walk, a graduate of Vassar College, has noticed that a lot of people can't sit still for five minutes without checking their phone. He has also noticed that people like to see the latest big releases in a theatrical setting.
He realises that the two concepts are not conducive with one another, so he has devised a new approach to the movie-going experience; turning it into a giant living room. One you have to share with total strangers.
By now you have probably encountered the debate surrounding Star Trek Into Darkness, namely the Alice Eve nude scene. Some see it as sexist and reductive, others don't see the big deal.
Damon Lindelof took ownership of the issue and apologised. That probably would have been enough, the issue could then die out with everyone chalking it down to an error in judgment.
Until, that is, JJ Abrams appeared on The Conan O'Brien Show to address the issue personally. Initially joking, he revealed there was a similar nude scene in the film featuring Benedict Cumberbatch's "John Harrison" having a shower. If this was an attempt to redress the balance, it was a huge miscalculation. If anything it only draws further attention to the wrong-headed nature of the scene.
WARNING: MASSIVE SPOILERS FOR THE END OF STAR TREK INTO DARKNESS
I’m going to preface this by stating that, for the record I am a modest Star Trek fan. That is not an obsessive Trekker but enough to know that ‘Trekkie’ is a pejorative term (at least until progressive, third wave Trekkies reclaim it). I’ve seen pretty much every show and watched all the films. When I was ten I even went to a Star Trek convention and listened to William Shatner burble on about English Muffins for an hour.
I've loved going to the cinema (what's that woman doing with that plastic bag) ever since I was kid (is that a tube of Pringles I can hear being tipped into someone's mouth?). There's something so magical about being in the dark (people really should close their mouths when they eat) and bathed in the light from another world (is that person texting?). It is totally immersive (seriously, why did you come here if you wanted to talk?) and few things can take you away from your own life for a few hours as successfully (I'm certain that man at the back is doing origami with several newspapers).
But, I'm increasingly coming to believe that many people find it hard to just sit and watch a film. Perhaps you've noticed too? It really seems that there are few people capable of being in a quiet room and paying attention to a single screen without the need to bring the content of their fridges to load up on carbs or find some other way to break up the experience.
I used to remember the run up to summer cinema being something I found extremely exciting.
The next big Hollywood blockbuster (or four) was due for release and, in my state of child-like wonder, I couldn't wait to be blown away by a special effects-laden spectacle that was low on intellect but high in action.
Unfortunately, there has been a change a-comin' and I now find myself no longer excited at the prospect of the blockbuster season - The Dark Knight Rises apart.
Have I grown out of this? Doubtless. I still love mindless action films. Are the tentpole releases no longer inspiring? Probably. More importantly, am I the only one to feel this way?
After recently watching the disappointing Friends With Kids, a rather irritating thought occurred to me: Chris O’Dowd, one of the finest comedic actors to come out of Ireland, stars in a supporting role alongside his fellow Bridemaids’ chums. O’Dowd has one of the most noticeable accents in recent years. His Irish charm captivated audiences worldwide last year and anyone who has watched The IT Crowd knows that this man is Irish through and through.
So why, then, does he play an American in Friends With Kids?
By now a whole bunch has been written about Prometheus and its many faults and plus points have been analyzed within an inch of their lives. While it’s clearly nowhere close to perfect it had moments of awe. Pure awe. Therefore I can’t condemn it too vociferously – in today’s cinema there is so much spectacle and so little awe that we should hang on to all the awe we can. I do, however, want to highlight one of the elements that was sorely lacking; the monsters.
Beware: spoilers ahoy after the jump.
Helen Cox edits New Empress Magazine, and she’s got something to say.
Don’t know if you’d heard, but last week Ridley Scott released his first sci-fi film since the 1982 genre breakthrough: Blade Runner. You may also have heard that a lot of people came out after seeing this film feeling disappointed, disgruntled and confused. The probable problem? They believed the hype.