First Look at Bane: The Dark Knight Rises

By Garth Franklin of

The viral campaign for Chris Nolan’s “The Dark Knight Rises” has begun with the official site having opened and only revealed a blank screen with some strange chanting. A visual analysis of the file revealed the Twitter hashtag #TheFireRises which lead to a pixel by pixel assemblage of an image.

Of course viral campaigns are fun games for those who have the time, for the rest of us they’re annoying roadblocks to the good stuff. Thankfully there’s others around to do the work so you don’t have to – the result is the below photo which is the first official image of Tom Hardy as Bane in the third and final film of Chris Nolan’s Batman trilogy.

The release comes considerably earlier than expected, leading to speculation that their might be some location shooting with the character soon – making this a better unveiling than some distant blurry paparazzi shots.

The design itself, from what we can see at this angle, is what you’d expect. They’ve thankfully ditched the Mexican wrestler outfit of the comic in favor of a hi-tech gimp mask on a big, muscular man. Think a more sinister version of the bouncer down at your local leather bar.

Thor: A Movie Review

Just about anyone who knows me well knows that I am a collector of Batman memorabilia and have been a fan of DC Comics for more than 20 years. Sure, I knew about Marvel Comics, and even was an avid reader of the X-Men titles, but I’ve always been a die-hard DC fan at heart. I might be willing to change my mind considering how well Marvel has been producing such incredible movies, TV shows and their comic lines. I bring this up as a lead in to my thoughts on the new Thor film. This is the penultimate movie released before seeing all of the recent Marvel characters brought together in next year’s Avengers movie. This movie is proof positive that Marvel is currently doing everything right and is setting us up for the biggest superhero collaboration of all time and I can’t wait. DC, maybe you should start taking some lessons from Marvel and try the same formula with your films.
I’ll admit that I was incredibly worried about how a Thor film was going to turn out. Of all of the members of the Avengers, Thor is probably the least known and I was worried that it would be campy and Thor would look ridiculous in his over the top costume and helmet. As filming began to start, I started seeing glimmers of hope. Kenneth Branagh was hired as the director and Chris Hemsworth had been hired to play the God of thunder. Everything that I saw or heard since they were hired, gave me hope that we would indeed see a great telling of Thor and his origin and indeed they did not let me down.
I mention Kenneth and Chris primarily because it is because of them that this movie works as well as it does. Just about anyone could have been hired for the supporting cast, however I think if anyone other than Chris had been hired, it wouldn’t have been the same film. He brought charisma, sincerity, strength, charm and honesty to the character that most people would have not captured. It also doesn’t hurt that he is damn fine and complete eye candy for the audience. Then we have the incredible work of the director Kenneth Branagh. This film was tailor made for this actor turned director. Practically everything that Mr. Branagh has directed have been movies about Shakespeare plays. What does that matter you may ask? Well, considering that Thor, Odin, Loki and other characters in this story actually are a part of Norse mythology, the parallels between them and the tales of Shakespeare are countless. This film deals greatly with the power struggle between Odin and Thor, much like the plays of Shakespeare that deal with the English royal family. Thanks to the director we really get to delve into the characters of this father, son and brother to truly see what makes a hero and how a king should govern his people and land.
I honestly couldn’t be happier with this film. What could have been extremely cheesy and worthy of eye-rolling has been turned into a film about legend, royalty, determining your own self-worth, and humility. I can’t wait to see this again and only have two more months left before we see Captain America: The First Avenger and the last film before we get The Avengers on screen next year. Marvel, keep up the good work because I’m really enjoying what you’re doing!

J.Chandler – A-

The International TINTIN Poster!

Empire Onlinehas the first look at THE ADVENTURES OF TINTIN: THE SECRET OF THE UNICORN. I can’t wait – the collaborators in this project are Steven Spielberg, Peter Jackson, and Joe Cornish. Lots of great voices including Daniel Craig, Simon Pegg, Nick Frost, Jamie Bell… and it’s Spielberg’s first CGI directed film. So what if I’m not very familiar with the subject matter? I know enough that this is a can’t-miss for me. Here’s the poster:

So… first off – TINTIN is the boy, not the dog. The dog is known as Snowy, btw Snowy likes Whiskey! TinTin is an investigative journalist that winds up on a neverending series of adventures the likes of which… no redheaded boy could ever pass up. These are humorous, outlandish and magical adventures. The international poster that went up by Nordling earlier is a bright and fun poster, but I prefer the mood and the tone of this poster.
Look at that Screenplay credit! I believe this film is going to be amazing and will finally bring TINTIN to the United States, the way he is known world wide! This is nothing but great coming. With a cast of Jamie Bell, Simon Pegg, Daniel Craig, Cary Elwes, Andy Serkis, Nick Frost, Mackenzie Crook, Toby Jones and others… It will flat out own I believe.

Conan: The Barbarian Official Full Trailer 2011

Our first full trailer for Marcus Nispel’s CONAN: THE BARBARIAN movie, starring Jason Momoa (STARGATE ATLANTIS and GAME OF THRONES) in the title role.

X-Men: First Class – Character sneak peaks! recently posted three character videos for X-MEN: FIRST CLASS – and I must say everything I’m seeing on this film bolsters my confidence in Matthew Vaughn, who has kicked ass with each and every film he’s put out there. I’ve heard that everyone on this film is working and burning the midnight oil – but then – that’s kind of the story for every big film due out this summer.

Hear we’re getting a look at Hank McCoy aka THE BEAST – the only original X-MEN being treated as an original X-MEN and I love in his short character piece seeing how he’s being played. There’s a part of me that always twitches with the changes to the original origins – but at the same time, I’d be lying if I didn’t say I’m intrigued by how these changes are being handled and portrayed.

Then there’s Alex Summers, HAVOK, Cyclops’ older brother. He is a great character in the comics. Having him there with BEAST also feels great. Because he did feature about mid-run of the original X-MEN series.

Probably the most appropriate X-MEN for this notion of doing a pre-Classic X-MEN team is BANSHEE. In the original Silver-Age stories he was far older than Scott, Bobby, Warren, Hank & Jean. But I loved him for being a Redhead – and kudos on all involved for keeping his lockes that color and keeping him Irish. Anyway – here’s the features: