Category Archives: Movies

BLADE RUNNER A CUT ABOVE

BLADE RUNNER A CUT ABOVE

More spiritual successor than sequel

PHOTOS: WARNER BROS. Ryan Gosling, left, and Harrison Ford meet up in the final hour of Blade Runner 2049, and Ford’s character is crucial to the plot.

The term “sequel” has been sullied by a century of second, sixth and seventh parts. So let’s not call Blade Runner 2049 a sequel. Call it the spiritual successor to one of the greatest science-fiction stories ever told. And it lives up to that billing.

It is set not 32 years into our future, but 30 years into the future of the original Blade Runner, from 1982. That one took place in a 2019 with flying cars and robot “replicants” but without cellphones or the internet, and with a decidedly retro sense of fashion. In Blade Runner’s future, there is still a Soviet Union and Atari has an advertising budget big enough to buy the side of a skyscraper.

Some of that fictional 2049 may yet dovetail with our own. The weather continues to worsen — the omnipresent rain of Los Angeles occasionally cut with sudden snow squalls — and rising ocean levels mandate a huge seawall on the west coast.

But that’s just window dressing. The story this time involves a next-generation blade runner (Ryan Gosling) with the utilitarian name of K. Like Harrison Ford’s Rick Deckard from the original, he’s part of LAPD’s “retirement division,” tasked with killing older-model replicants that are trying to pass as humans.

The latest model, called a Nexus-9, has been created to be unswervingly obedient, although that’s a bit like saying your car’s GPS is unswervingly accurate. To err is replicant; to forgive, machine.

In the opening scene, K retires a Nexus named Sapper Morton (Dave Bautista). Before the replicant expires, it talks about having “seen a miracle.”

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Denis Villeneuve and Blade Runner 2049

Today’s Montreal Gazette has Blade Runner on the front page, and more inside.

Below, the interview with Denis Villeneuve.

Click here to read an interview with Festival du nouveau cinéma  co-founder, Claude Chamberlain speaking on how Denis Villeneuve helped get one of the two premieres of  Blade Runner 2049. It’s on Wednesday, but by  invitation only. And we weren’t invited, sigh.

ON THE CUTTING EDGE
How do you follow in the footsteps of a sci-fi masterpiece? Montreal director Denis Villeneuve says he’s ‘serene’ now that Blade Runner 2049 — perhaps the most anticipated release of the year — is done. And he’s happy its Canadian première will be at the FNC.

WARNER BROS. WENN.COM. On the set of Blade Runner 2049: “One thing that’s important, and I don’t say this lightly, is that Ridley Scott liked the film, and Harrison Ford, too,” Villeneuve said. “The two fathers (of the original) liked the film. From the moment (I heard that), I was OK.” Below: Ryan Gosling, right, in a scene from the stylish, esoterically paced noir Blade Runner 2049.

Blade Runner 2049 opens the Festival du nouveau cinéma at an invitation-only screening on Wednesday, Oct. 4 and previews in theatres on Thursday night before opening wide on Friday.

Denis Villeneuve was in a good place Thursday morning — and not just because he was home in Montreal.

He seemed remarkably calm less than a week before the world première of the biggest film of his career — the long-awaited sequel of one of his all-time favourite movies and perhaps the most anticipated release of the year: Blade Runner 2049.

“I feel serene because the movie is made,” he said, sitting on a couch on the top floor of an Old Montreal boutique hotel, clad in a smart black suit, speaking just above a whisper.

“From the beginning, I made peace with the idea that my chances of success were very small and that I couldn’t make this film expecting results or the approval or affection of the film community or the public.

“I had to make this film only as a gesture of creation.  If not, if I had put pressure on myself linked to the fact that (the original) is a masterpiece, I wouldn’t be here today. I wouldn’t have found freedom or joy.  When you make cinema, there’s a profound joy of creation, which you have to be in touch with.”

Villeneuve’s freedom is on full display in Blade Runner 2049, a visually spectacular, tonally haunting, dream-like epic that conforms only nominally to Hollywood norms. Continue reading Denis Villeneuve and Blade Runner 2049

Downsizing (2017) – Official Trailer – Paramount Pictures

Watch the new trailer for #Downsizing, directed by Alexander Payne and starring Matt Damon, Christoph Waltz, Hong Chau, and Kristen Wiig! In theatres this December.

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When scientists discover how to shrink humans to five inches tall as a solution to over-population, Paul (Matt Damon) and his wife Audrey (Kristen Wiig) decide to abandon their stressed lives in order to get small and move to a new downsized community — a choice that triggers life-changing adventures.

Local firm works on Game of Thrones

RODEO FX HEATS UP THE SCREEN

JOHN MAHONEY These 3D-printed stallions helped Sébastien Moreau’s company, Rodeo FX, create effects for the television show Game of Thrones.

The final episode of the most recent season of Game of Thrones ends with a dragon destroying a location that has played a major role in the plot of the popular TV show.

Behind the scenes, making the destruction look real, was Montreal-based Rodeo FX.

The company has been working on visual effects for Game of Thrones for four years — creating and destroying cities; making dragons breathe fire and oceans boil; and bringing thousands of extras to life through digital effects. For three years in a row, it’s won Emmy Awards for its work on the show.

While Game of Thrones isn’t in the running for any Emmys this year — the seventh season premièred too late in the year — Rodeo FX is nominated for its work on another show, Black Sails.

“Visual effects are becoming more and more important in the film industry and TV industry, the budgets are growing,” said Sébastien Moreau, the company’s founder and president.

At any given time, the company is working on between six and 10 projects, many of them major Hollywood films. The studio recently spent two years working on Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets, which came out in July. It also worked on an adaptation of Stephen King ’s It, which comes out in September, and the upcoming Blade Runner 2049, directed by Quebecer Denis Villeneuve.

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THE DARK TOWER opens Aug 4

THE DARK TOWER  Action-Adventure   August 4, 2017

There are other worlds than these. Stephen King’s The Dark Tower, the ambitious and expansive story from one of the world’s most celebrated authors, makes its launch to the big screen.  The last Gunslinger, Roland Deschain (Idris Elba), has been locked in an eternal battle with Walter O’Dim, also known as the Man in Black (Matthew McConaughey), determined to prevent him from toppling the Dark Tower, which holds the universe together. With the fate of the worlds at stake, good and evil will collide in the ultimate battle as only Roland can defend the Tower from the Man in Black.