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Sunday, July 27, 2008

WHAT MICHAEL BAY SHOULD TELL SHIA LABEOUF the next time they're on the set of Transformers 2, in regards to LaBeouf's car accident and DUI arrest earlier today:

"Listen to me you little piece of f*ck turd. This movie will make you f*cking rich. Now, The Dark Knight is making Heath Ledger f*cking rich. Do you think he's enjoying it? Get it straight bitch!"

I found this on a message board. That quote is pretty tactless, but still...


Just another excuse to post up a pic with The Foxy One in it.

Saturday, July 26, 2008

SO ANYWAYS, I’m trying to decide whether or not I should create a separate Blog devoted primarily to very-personal journal entries. Seeing as how I’m getting lots of visits to this page right now (thanks in part to Transformers 2?), it seems awkward—for those of you who actually read my posts, that is—to mix talks of big summer blockbuster movies with me expressing my, um, feelings for girls I have the hots for right now (see the two entries before this one for examples). Or maybe you guys enjoy reading my pathetic ramblings about girls I could never be with? And how crappy being infatuated can be? Hahaha. Well... I’m still thinking about it.

I was gonna watch The Dark Knight again today, but it’s still a special engagement right now...meaning the free silver pass I have for AMC theatres cannot yet be used. Darn. One more week...

The Joker poses as a nurse in THE DARK KNIGHT.

Friday, July 25, 2008

TRANSFORMERS: REVENGE OF THE FALLEN Official Logo.

STEVE JABLONSKY BACK FOR TRANSFORMERS 2... For those of you who’ve been visiting this Blog since at least last summer, you probably saw a couple of journal entries where I expressed my frustration over the fact the Transformers orchestral music score wasn’t released around the same time as the movie. The score was eventually released on October 9 of last year, and it did not disappoint. The music for Transformers is one of my favorite all-time movie scores...if NOT my most favorite film score, ever. Yes, you heard right. Sorry to say that, John Williams, James Horner, Don Davis, Danny Elfman and Hans Zimmer (though Jablonsky is a protégé of Zimmer... By the way, gotta remind myself to buy The Dark Knight score sometime this week).

Anyways, to finally get to the point of this entry, The Knight Shift mentioned that Jablonsky will return to conduct the music for Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen. Can’t wait to see what awesome new tracks he’ll conjure up. The Decepticon theme in the first film was cool, but I’m wondering if Jablonsky will come up with a more sinister theme for the bad guys that rivals the majestic-sounding piece he did with the Autobot Arrival scene. Let’s wait and see. And here’s hoping the music for Revenge of the Fallen actually comes out around the same time as the film! It would be kinda whack if fans had to resort to filling out a petition just like they (or we) did for the first score last year. With the exception of Linkin Park’s "What I’ve Done", screw the Transformers soundtrack (not score. There’s a difference)!! Half the songs on that CD weren’t even in the movie, anyway...

By the way, Jablonsky is also scoring the music for the XBox video game, Gears of Wars 2. The first game kicked ass! Must I actually buy an XBox to hear what Jablonsky will come up with for the sequel? Naaah...

On a different note, here’s a photo of Megan Fox from the set of Revenge of the Fallen on Tuesday. Filming was done at Venice Beach in California. Too bad the production wasn't at Huntington Beach instead. I live a lot closer to that area.

Megan Fox on the Venice Beach film set of TRANSFORMERS: REVENGE OF THE FALLEN.
Damn lucky Asian guy...

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Capt. John Miller (Tom Hanks), Sgt. Mike Horvath (Tom Sizemore) and their fellow soldiers prepare to storm the beach at Normandy in SAVING PRIVATE RYAN.

SAVING PRIVATE RYAN... Ten years ago today, Steven Spielberg’s critically-acclaimed World War II epic about a group of soldiers who venture across battle-torn Europe to look for a lone paratrooper following the D-Day landings came out in theaters nationwide. Saving Private Ryan would revolutionize war movies...as well as change the way battles were filmed (the hand-held camera shots and fast-shutter technique that Spielberg used during the opening D-Day sequence as well as the climactic battle in that French village would be employed by Ridley Scott in such movies as Gladiator and Black Hawk Down). Saving Private Ryan would go on to earn a Best Picture Oscar nomination the following year—only to be upset by the romantic comedy Shakespeare in Love.

A German gunner (out of frame) fires away at Allied soldiers who land on a beach at Normandy in SAVING PRIVATE RYAN.

On a personal note, Saving Private Ryan was released in the summer that followed my graduation from high school and preceded me starting college at Cal State Long Beach. Even without the nostalgia, Private Ryan is an intense movie (though one wonders if Spielberg could’ve done without the fluffy modern-day scenes at the Normandy American Cemetery that open and close the flick)...with John Williams poignant music score adding to the power of this remarkable film.

Captain Miller and his troops prepare to confront an approaching German garrison in SAVING PRIVATE RYAN.

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

BATMAN BEGINS 3... Much like what I did for the plot of Transformers 2 last year, here’s my own take on how the story for a third Christopher Nolan-directed film would be like...if AZRAEL and BANE were the main villains. A lot of folks online are suggesting that Catwoman and the Riddler be in the second Batman Begins sequel, but seeing as how we already saw them in Batman Returns and Batman Forever, respectively (Bane was in Batman and Robin, but that film doesn’t count since it was a complete piece of crap), that would be lame. Of course, there are basically no other bad guys left (except for maybe the Mad Hatter) who could be handled with the kind of realism that Nolan is obviously trying to convey in his films.

Azrael.

A way to have Azrael and Bane in the third film would be to have the society that Azrael worked for in the comic books, The Sacred Order of Saint Dumas, be the rival to the League of Shadows depicted in Batman Begins. Both are a secret society of assassins out to bring justice to the world, no matter how destructive the method.

Azrael.

After the death of Ra's al Ghul in Begins, Bane took charge of the last remnants of the League, and goes back to Gotham City to finish what Ghul couldn't do...bringing the city to its knees. It just so happened that Bane murdered Azrael's father (who actually got killed in the comic books) as a result of the rivalry between The Sacred Order and the League, and Azrael now wants revenge.

Bane.

To give Bane the kind of realistic look that’s portrayed in Nolan’s films, have him wear the kind of black ninja suit Ra’s al Ghul’s goons wore as they fought Batman on that rooftop at the end of Batman Begins (oh, and have him wear a gas mask instead of that pro wrestler/gimp mask too, haha). The only difference for Bane is that the suit is a lot bigger to fit his pro wrestler-like physique, and has tubes extending from the back of his mask to his body. And Nolan can convey some kind of non-preachy, moralistic message with the "Venom = Steroids" thing. (For those of you who don't know what I'm talking about, Bane injects himself with a liquid called ‘Venom’ whenever he wants to increase the size of his body before beating the crap out of someone...or breaking the back of a certain masked vigilante.)

Azrael-Batman soars over Gotham.

(SPOILERS AHEAD, for those of you who haven’t seen The Dark Knight yet...) Batman is still a fugitive, and the man behind Azrael, Jean-Paul Valley, tries to get hold of Lucius Fox and Coleman Reese (who discovered Batman’s true identity in The Dark Knight) to obtain the armor necessary to defeat Bane. With Batman out of the picture, Azrael succeeds in doing so, and finishes off the rest of the League of Shadows. In the process, however, Azrael becomes even more dangerous and power-crazed as he continues dishing out vigilante justice. (It's obviously too bad for Heath Ledger's passing. Since the Joker survived at the end of The Dark Knight, he could've returned in the third film...only to get impaled by one of those flaming blades that shoot out from Azrael's gauntlets.) Azrael becomes convinced that he is the new Batman, prompting him to build the golden armor made famous in the Knightfall and Knightquest comic book series (shown above and below)...prompting a final showdown with the real Batman.

Azrael-Batman.

Of course, if Nolan wanted to remain true to Knightfall and have his trilogy (IF he directs a third film) end on a surprising note (for the movie-going public who have never read a Batman comic book before, that is), have Bane break Batman’s back like he did in the comics...with Azrael defeating Bane after that. The final shot of the film could show a golden-clad Batman, with Jean-Paul Valley under the mask, gliding away from a skyscraper the same way Bruce Wayne’s Caped Crusader soared off that building at the end of Batman Begins.

That's all. No wait— One more thing. Who should play Azrael and Bane in Batman Begins 3? I have an idea:

Clive Owen as Azrael.

CLIVE OWEN as AZRAEL

Michael Chicklis as Bane.

MICHAEL CHIKLIS as BANE

Sunday, July 20, 2008

Christian Bale as Bruce Wayne and the Batman.

BEST SUMMER MOVIE OF 2008... Or hell, THE best movie of 2008, so far. I watched The Dark Knight in IMAX today, and I don’t think anything will top this film until the actual Oscar movie season starts this Fall. Heath Ledger’s performance as the Joker was TRULY phenomenal, and if The Departed (which I enjoyed) could be nominated (and win) the Best Picture for 2006, then why not The Dark Knight for '08? Both dealt with the gray line that separates good guys from criminals...though one of my friends who I saw The Dark Knight with today said Chris Nolan did a better job with this topic than Martin Scorsese did with The Departed. A science fantasy like Star Wars got nominated in 1978, an action-adventure serial like Raiders of the Lost Ark got nominated in ’82, and all three films in the Lord of the Rings trilogy got nominated in 2002, ’03 and ’04, respectively (with Return of the King actually winning Best Picture in ’04), so why not The Dark Knight as the first Oscar-worthy comic book flick? If you disagree, then you’re either a hater, or you haven’t seen the film yet. Or you thought Mamma Mia! was a better film to see this weekend than the newest Batman flick. I’ll hunt you down if that last one was the case.

Heath Ledger as the Joker.

So why did the Joker kick ass in this film? So many moments to use for examples... That "magic trick" he did with that pencil... His many stories about where he got those scars near his mouth from... The different weapons he used, ranging from an Uzi to a bazooka, to take out that armored police van that had Harvey Dent in it... Or the very scene in that hospital where he successfully converted Harvey Dent from the "White Knight" District Attorney into the vengeful Harvey "Two-Face". Or maybe it was the two conversations (the first one in that police interrogation room, and the second one as the Joker was hanging upside-down from that ledge atop the skyscraper in the movie’s climax) that the Joker had with Batman. "You won’t kill me because you’re incorruptible, Batman. And I won’t kill you ‘cause, well, you’re just too much fun." Awesome.

The Joker, sans makeup.

Everyone in The Dark Knight gave great performances. Christian Bale once again did an awesome job playing Batman and his alter ego, Bruce Wayne. Morgan Freeman gave an amusing performance as Batman’s gadget supplier, Lucius Fox. Michael Caine, as Alfred, had a couple of witty conversations with Bruce Wayne [ALFRED (on Bruce Wayne turning himself in as Batman): "Are you gonna turn me in as your accomplice?" WAYNE: "Are you kidding? I’m gonna tell them this whole thing was your idea."]. Gary Oldman’s Commissioner Gordon was just as heroic as Batman. Aaron Eckhart did a cool job as Harvey Dent and Two-Face (the prosthetics/CGI on his face looked totally awesome! Truly gruesome in a positive way). Maggie Gyllenhaal did a nice job taking Katie Holmes' spot as Rachel Dawes...though unlike Ms. Holmes (I will NOT call her Mrs. Cruise), the camera wasn’t exactly friendly to Maggie’s face during those extreme close-ups. Or is it the other way around? Sorry for sounding like a jerk, haha. And the Bat Pod was totally freakin’ awesome! Though I’ll miss the Tumbler. Such a cool ride.

Maggie Gyllenhaal as Rachel Dawes.

So all in all, The Dark Knight rocked! Ledger should at least get nominated a posthumous Oscar for Best Supporting Actor. And the movie itself should get noms for tons of technical categories (namely— Best Cinematography, Best Make-up and Best Film Editing. And maybe even Best Original Score...though new Academy rules prevent that from happening since we already heard most of the tunes in Batman Begins). So who should the villains in the next Batman Begins sequel be? Two names come to mind: BANE and AZRAEL. More on that in a future Blog...

THE DARK KNIGHT Rating: 5 out of 5 stars. *****

Aaron Eckhart as Harvey 'Two-Face'.

Friday, July 18, 2008

THE DARK KNIGHT... Um, do I really need to remind you that it’s now out in theaters? Didn’t think so.

THE DARK KNIGHT Poster.

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Megan Fox and Shia LaBeouf being filmed for TRANSFORMERS: REVENGE OF THE FALLEN at the Eastern State Penitentiary in Pennsylvania last month.
Courtesy of EasternState.org

TRANSFORMERS 2 Filming Resumes... Apparently, one good thing that came out of the Screen Actors Guild (SAG) situation is that Michael Bay was able to resume production for Revenge of the Fallen in secrecy (till now)...after the movie went on a supposed hiatus in preparation for a potential SAG strike (which hopefully seems less likely now that its sister union, AFTRA, ratified a deal with the movie studios on July 8...taking away some of SAG's negotiating leverage). One of the movie’s scriptwriters, Roberto Orci, and Bay himself mentioned that filming has been going on since last week. The crew was at Edwards Air Force Base in California last weekend, while filming will take place in Los Angeles (about 100 miles south of Edwards) for the next couple of weeks.

Below are photos provided by Vamphite, which shows three of the four surviving Autobots from the previous film (Optimus Prime, Ratchet and Ironhide... Bumblebee’s nowhere to be seen), as well as a couple of new vehicles that will transform into robotic allies, whose names we don’t know yet.

Even though SAG is still in talks with the studios (the union has till August 15 to accept the studios’ new deal, making all payment owed to the actors under the new contract retroactive to July 1...a day after the previous contract expired), here’s hoping things have calmed down to the point where production for Transformers 2 can stay uninterrupted. Principal photography is scheduled to end in October, while we will hopefully see the first teaser trailer for Transformers 2 in November. Hopefully.

Photos of the TRANSFORMERS 2 hero vehicles at Edwards AFB in California.
Courtesy of Vamphite

Sunday, July 13, 2008

WHAT IF THE BATMOBILE WAS AN AUTOBOT? In celebration of The Dark Knight coming out in movie theaters this Friday, Jester posted up this terrific artwork showing how Batman’s ride, the Tumbler, looked if it transformed into a giant alien robot. All we need to see now is an image of the Bat Pod as a Decepticon. Or the Joker as a Pretender.

If you were a die-hard Transformers fan, you would be cursing me to high hell for suggesting that last one.


Fan art depicting the Tumbler, from BATMAN BEGINS and THE DARK KNIGHT, as a Transformer.
Courtesy of JesterPictures.com

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

DAMN IT, just when I thought I’d try not to annoy all of you by posting yet another journal entry on that movie about robots in disguise, Tim Flattery had to display a bunch of kick-ass artwork that he did for last year’s Transformers. The highlight of these concepts are the illustrations he made of a transforming aircraft carrier...which was suppose to be in the first film but was dropped due to budgetary reasons. The carrier was then rumored to be in the sequel, but producer Lorenzo di Bonaventura said it was just a rumor, and that they never intended to have a giant carrier ‘bot in Transformers 2. Damn you, again! Well— There’s always the third film, right? Right?

Oh well.

TRANSFORMERS concept artwork.

TRANSFORMERS concept artwork #2.

Both images courtesy of Tim Flattery

Monday, July 7, 2008

IT IS ARCEE! Or maybe not. Overlooking the fact she’d get a severe windburn if she actually drove a cycle in that outfit (well, it’s either that or receiving a mad carpet-burn...which Ms. Fox must’ve gotten a couple of times ‘cause she’s crazy like that. Do I really need to elaborate?), Megan Fox somewhat fulfills what some Transformers fanboys (and...girls?) are hoping to see in the sequel: Mikaela riding through the streets of some fictional city on a bad-ass motorbike during a big action scene in Revenge of the Fallen. This photo, which was shot prior to the production entering a temporary hiatus on June 26 to prepare for a potential SAG strike—which hopefully won’t happen if AFTRA’s new deal with the studios receives a "yes" vote tomorrow—shows Sam Witwicky kissing his girl goodbye on the Princeton University campus. Rumors go that this scene will take place at the end of the film. That goes with Michael Bay’s remarks that TF2 is a stand-alone sequel (with everything being all fine and dandy in the finale if the photo below is any indication), and won’t have a "bullshit" cliffhanger that paves the way for a third film. But there will be a third film, right? Right?

Shia LaBeouf kisses Megan Fox during the filming of TRANSFORMERS 2 at Princeton University on June 25, 2008.

The original photo shows Mikaela straddling—I mean, sitting—atop an orange Aprilia RS125 motorcycle. Arcee, on the other hand, is supposed to be a custom-made pink or purple bike made by the company RetroSBK. So why is the cycle in this image pink, you ask? ‘Cause Photoshop rules.

Arcee.

Sunday, July 6, 2008

The Foxy One and the Tumbler.

MICHAEL BAY’S THE DARK KNIGHT... Spill.com posted up this fake screenplay depicting how the upcoming Batman Begins sequel would be like if it was directed by the Bayster himself (Wait— Did anyone else actually give Bay that nickname? Whatever). Instead of casting a hot blonde as Rachel Dawes, why not just get Megan Fox to put on a business suit and eyeglasses? Or just eyeglasses? She's a brunette like Katie Holmes and Maggie Gyllenhaal... Anyways— Below is a scan of one of the script pages:

Excerpt from MICHAEL BAY'S THE DARK KNIGHT script.
Spill.com

Thursday, July 3, 2008

TRANSFORMERS 2 fan-made poster.

TWO COOL (BUT FAKE) POSTERS for Transformers 2... For the past week or so, fans online have been speculating about whether or not the poster seen above was legit. Well, it turns out it obviously is not. Someone on Don Murphy’s message board came out and confessed that he was the perpetrator (albeit a very talented one) behind the phony image, which—along with another version—is seen in its clear and larger glory below. Note to "Tormentor": You should’ve kept the charade going a bit longer...at least till production resumes on Revenge of the Fallen so fans have something else (and real) to talk about. Curse you and your deceptive hide. Awesome posters, though.

TRANSFORMERS 2 fan-made posters.
Tormentor, a.k.a. Marobot