Conan and J.J. Abrams discuss a deleted scene from Star Trek Into Darkness starring Benedict Cumberbatch’s torso. Aiiieeee we’re used to thinking of Cumberbatch as a disembodied voice. Now the voice has pecs.
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Photo from Pelikula, Atbp.
Bella Flores, the archetypal villainess of Filipino cinema, has died.
So now we’re stuck with inferior copies.
We never had the pleasure of meeting Bella Flores, but we think of her every time our phone rings. Literally, because she is our ringtone.
Noel worked with her on an ad a few years ago, and he asked her to record this.
Suddenly we feel like wearing a beehive hairdo, carrying an extra-long cigarette holder, and walking around arms akimbo. Well half-akimbo, since we’d need one hand for the cigarette holder.
With the original gone, we’ll have to make do with our inner Bella Flores.
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Mark McCullie, who recorded Bella Flores, is sharing the sound file with everyone. Thank you!
If you download it, do say thanks to Mark.
We had to turn to our friend, an original Leo fan club member gone apostate, and whisper, “Break na kayo ni Channing Tatum, ano?” Photo from the Hollywood Reporter
Not gaudily sublime or sublimely gaudy, but gaudy and sublime.
In the first half-hour we didn’t know whether to stay or go. Then Leonardo DiCaprio appeared in the most ridiculous movie star introduction in memory, and the movie was on.
Of course the 21st century soundtrack produced by Jay-Z is entirely appropriate: his music is about climbing, money and power. Don’t forget that Gatsby is the story of a very successful social climber.
We couldn’t wait to review the movie so we wrote this over dinner.
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Those extravagant character introductions follow Scott Fitzgerald’s explicit stage directions.
We walked through a high hallway into a bright rosy-colored space, fragilely bound into the house by French windows at either end. The windows were ajar and gleaming white against the fresh grass outside that seemed to grow a little way into the house. A breeze blew threw the room, blew curtains in at one end and out the other like pale flags, twisting them up toward the frosted wedding cake of the ceiling—and then rippled over the wine-colored rug, making a shadow on it as wind does on the sea.
The only completely stationary object in the room was an enormous couch on which two young women were buoyed up as though upon an anchored balloon. They were both in white and their dresses were rippling and fluttering as it they had just been blown back in after a short flight around the house. I must have stood for a few moments listening to the whip and snap of the curtains and the groan of a picture on the wall. Then there was a boom as Tom Buchanan shut the rear windows and the caught wind died out about the room and the curtains and the rugs and the two young women ballooned slowly to the floor.
He smiled understandingly—much more than understandingly. It was one of those rare smiles with a quality of eternal reassurance in it, that you may come across four or five times in life. It faced—or seemed to face—the whole external world for an instant, and the concentrated on you with an irresistible prejudice in your favor. It understood you just as far as you wanted to be understood, believed in you as you would like to believe in yourself and assured you that it had precisely the impression of you that, at your best, you hoped to convey. Precisely at that point it vanished—and I was looking at an elegant young rough-neck, a year or two over thirty, whose elaborate formality of speech just missed being absurd.
from Business Insider
Our review of Star Trek Into Darkness is coming up. First feed cats (If the kibble dish is not full they consider it empty. They’re glass full/empty types.), then very late lunch, then movie, then review.
Based on the trailers we expect Star Trek: The Wrath of the Cumberbatch. British thespian rays on kill. He flattens everyone with his basso profundo.
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IN CASE THE TITLE DOES NOT GIVE SUFFICIENT WARNING, THIS POST CONTAINS A SPOILER.
We do not understand the producers’ coyness over the identity of the villain in the new Star Trek movie. When the cast was announced and everyone said, “A-ha! It’s Khan,” the producers said, “Oh no, no spoilers.” When the trailers appeared and everyone said, “A-ha! It IS Khan,” they were still going, “Oh no, no, no spoilers”, even if the movie’s IMDB page stated that the Cumberbatch was playing Khan.
And now that the movie’s out and the villain is (AVERT YOUR EYES NOW if your enjoyment of a movie would be seriously hampered by knowing the identity of the enemy because ours certainly wasn’t) Khan, will the producers deny denying it? Your viewing may actually be enhanced by re-viewing Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan (the only good Star Trek movie with the classic cast), in which the crew of the Enterprise is up against a super-intelligent being played by Ricardo Montalban. We haven’t seen Wrath of Khan (WOK) in ages, but we shudder at the memory of earworms yiiiiiiii and weep over this.
Directed by J.J. Abrams, who apparently has first dibs on the mega-franchises, Star Trek Into Darkness is both a prequel and a response to WOK. Retrofitting creates certain problems, like how does the Brit-est of Brits wake up in the future as a Latin lovah in an open shirt? Worry about that later. Into Darkness (ID) is big, loud and messy, with a life-threatening situation every ten minutes, huge explosions and a high body count. (And lens flares!)
Captain Kirk (Chris Pine), Mr. Spock (Zachary Quinto), comic relief Scotty (Simon Pegg), resident nag Dr. McCoy (Karl Urban, who comes very very close to saying, “He’s dead, Jim”), Mr. Sulu (John Cho), Lt. Uhura (Zoe Saldana), Mr. Chekhov (Anton Yelchin is aging backwards so he looks like he cut high school gym class) are sent off in pursuit of terrorist John Harrison (Benedict Cumberbatch, who looks fabulous and more Spock than Spock), a Starfleet officer who inexplicably attacks Starfleet installations. They are joined by a new weapons officer (Alice Eve), whose chief weapon is a gratuitous underwear scene. They chase Harrison into Klingon territory, where they risk starting a war with the Klingons.
The plot is daft and the storytelling needlessly complicated by the attempt to ratchet up the suspense. ID is not that suspenseful (Oh. He’s Khan.), but it is highly entertaining. It’s as if Abrams and his writers assembled a bunch of Trekkies and asked them to complete the sentence: Wouldn’t it be cool if the Enterprise ____________________?
We had a blast and will see it again. (There was some confusion over the exact opening date in Manila—some ads said May 15, some 16.) Our apologies to the people sitting near us: we could not help going “Uuuyyyyyyy” whenever Kirk and Spock had a moment. In our defense, we were Trekkies before we saw Star Wars or read Tolkien, so those two are practically our Mom and Dad.
Speaking of Spocks: the nerdiest commercial in the history of man.
Cross-nerd reference: The Ballad of Bilbo Baggins. (Does William Shatner feel bad about never being invited to these things?)
In Trance, the new film by Danny Boyle, thieves led by the scarily elegant Vincent Cassel arrive at an auction house to steal Goya’s Witches in the Air.
An employee of the auction house (the lovely James McAvoy) attempts to foil the robbery, but he gets conked on the head and loses all memory of the event.
But the thieves didn’t make off with the Goya. And McAvoy’s character wasn’t really trying to foil them. He’s the only guy who knows where the painting is, but he can’t remember the exact location. So he consults a hypnotherapist (Rosario Dawson) to recover his memory. She puts him in a trance to help him clear up the muddle, and that’s when things get really confusing. Are we seeing his memories, or are those events that are actually unfolding, or are they the contents of his unconscious?
In short, Trance is a mindfuck, and it’s compelling as long as you don’t demand absolute clarity. Also, the soundtrack’s good. Recommended for viewers who like movies about art, heists, alternate realities and attractive people in states of undress. (We’re pleased that the MTRCB gave it an R-16 rating instead of demanding cuts.) Not recommended for viewers who need to know exactly what’s going on at all times.
This is the second art-centered movie we’ve seen this year; the first was Gambit, in which fuddy-duddy curator Colin Firth and cowgirl Cameron Diaz try to sell nudist jillionaire Alan Rickman a forged Monet. Written by the Coen Brothers, Gambit features characters so stupid, they trip themselves up at every turn. True, this is the plot of many movies directed by the Coens, but we believe those movies. Okay, most of them. Gambit is so implausible, it quickly becomes an exercise in eyeball-rolling. Alan Rickman is funny, though.
Number of times we’ve seen Iron Man 3: Two. Read our spoiler-free first-day review at InterAksyon: It’s not the suit, it’s the man.
On opening day we caught it at Power Plant Mall Cinema 1. Our ticket was for the 3pm show. We arrived at 2:55pm, only to find that the movie had started early. We missed the entire prologue set in 1999.
Yesterday we saw it at Shangri-La Mall Cinema 3. The screen was so dark, the night scenes were barely visible. Hey, projection room!
Tsk, tsk. We may have to watch it again for the optimal viewing experience.
Where did you watch Iron Man 3? How was the theatre?
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Aha, we weren’t imagining things! Shangri-La Cinemas, madilim talaga ang projector ninyo.
Thanks for the reports, readers. Fire away.