Trailer: The Avengers (2nd Official)

We’re just a little over two months away from the release one of this summer’s most-anticipated films. It’s a film that’s been 4 years in the making. The first pieces that set it up were 2008’s Iron Man and The Incredible Hulk. This was followed up by 2010’s Iron Man 2 then finished up by the double-shot of 2011’s Thor and Captain America: The First Avenger.

It’s now 2012 and those five films will finally see it’s culmination with Joss Whedon’s The Avengers. It’s a superhero ensemble film starring each lead from all the aforementioned films with only Mark Ruffalo replacing Edward Norton in the role of Dr. Bruce Banner and his Hulk persona.

This latest official trailer from Marvel Studios gives a bit more insight as to the meat of The Avengers story. Where the previous teasers and trailer just showed the Avengers team in action with explosions happening around them this new one shows some of the initial dysfunctions which will plague the team when it first goes into action against a resurgent Loki and his invading alien army. We also get more scenes with Mark Ruffalo as the Hulk not to mention some action sequences involving Captain America, Iron Man and Thor.

To say that the release of this trailer elicited a global geekgasm would be an understatement. Even now the interwebz is rife with theories as to what is the huge serpent-looking machine that chases Iron Man before the trailer ends.

The Avengers is set for a release date of May 4, 2012.

Prometheus: Peter Weyland TED 2023 (Video Clip)

The video above was released today by 20th Century Fox as part of their marketing machine to help create buzz for their upcoming summer blockbuster scifi film Prometheus.

It’s a clip of a fictional keynote speech by one Peter Weyland at the TED 2023 conference. Guy Pearce plays the role of Peter Weyland and talks about how technology’s influence in human history from the beginning with fire (he mentions the Greek myth of Prometheus stealing the technology of fire from the gods and giving it to man) all the way to artificial intelligence and realistic cybernetic constructs.

Anyone who has been a fan of the Alien franchise will recognize the name Weyland. It’s the fictional transnational corporation which has become a major part of the films in the franchise and, to a degree, even to the Predator franchise. They’re the corporation which sends Ripley and the crew of the ore mining hauler Nostromo to the desolate planet of LV-426 where they encounter the very lifeform that would become one of film’s iconic monsters. It is also the corporation which 70+ years later would send a terraforming colony to the very same planet which would become a major part of the plot for Aliens. Even the David Fincherdirected third film, Alien 3, would use the corporation as the monolithic badguy behind-the-scenes.

Weyland is just part of the corporation’s name as through the years it would combine with another corporation to become Weyland-Yutani. While the aliens in the franchise have been the immediate threat in all the films in the franchise it would be Weyland-Yutani who became the face of the corporate evil that continues to try to get samples of the very alien the franchise is known for.

It’s going to be interesting how this viral video ties into the upcoming Ridley Scott “prequel” to Alien and whether Weyland-Yutani will play a major role in the film’s plot. One thing I’m sure is that Pearce definitely plays a convincing corporate visionary with a God-complex that’s part Steve Jobs and part Richard Branson (if both iconic businessmen channeled their inner-darkside).

Prometheus is set  for a June 8, 2012 release date.

AMV of the Day: Fairytale of Lies

The latest AMV of the Day comes courtesy of AMV creator Rider4Z. Outside of Chiikaboom, his amv creations have become some of the best I’ve seen and have earned a place on my favorite list.

This time around his latest anime music video takes a song from one of my favorite metal bands and uses it to score a well-edited selection of scenes from the romance-fantasy anime series, Romeo x Juliet. While some fans of the video has nitpicked and pointed out that it spoils the ending to the anime I just laugh at such fools. Fools I say! I mean how can an anime series adapting Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet be spoiling anything.

I like the song choice of Within Temptation’s track “Faster” from their 2011 concept album, The Unforgiving. This is not the first time Rider4Z has used this band’s symphonic metal sound to score one of his videos. Each and everytime he uses this band’s music it just makes those videos very epic in tone and scope. This video has already won some early year accolades. It recently won Best Drama in the Katsucon 2012 AMV contest. I have a feeling this video will be making the rounds at this year’s anime conventions and should pick up a few more awards.

Anime: Romeo x Juliet

Song: “Faster” by Within Temptation

Creator: Rider4Z

What Lisa Watched Last Night: The 84th Annual Academy Awards

Last night, me and my BFF Evelyn watched the 84th Annual Academy Awards.

Lisa and Evelyn at the Oscars

Why Was I Watching It?

As if you had to ask.

What Was It About?

It was about honoring some good films and making a lot of catty comments about rich people who don’t know how to dress themselves.

What Worked?

You know who is adorable?  Bret McKenzie, who all good people as a member of The Flight of the Conchords.  He won an Oscar last night for best original song for Man or Muppet and he gave exactly the type of wonderfully sincere acceptance speech that you would expect from Bret McKenzie.

You know who else is adorable?  Jim Rash.  The script he co-wrote for The Descendants is overrated but it was still good to see Community’s Dean up there accepting an Oscar.

And you know who is really, really adorable?  The little Emma Stone.  Loved her dress and loved her whole little skit with Ben Stiller.

Jean Dujardin, Christopher Plummer, and Octavia Spencer all gave wonderful acceptance speeches and Uggie got to go on stage when The Artist won best picture!  That was so cute!

What Didn’t Work?

Much like the Golden Globes last month, the Academy Awards were a rather somber affair,  It was as if everyone couldn’t get over the fact that they had actually nominated Incredibly Loud and Extremely Close and everyone was muttering under their breath, “Let’s get this over with before anyone remembers that we nominated a film that not even those people at the Golden Globes were impressed by!”

As much as I enjoyed two of the nominees for best picture (The Artist and Hugo), respected one of them (The Tree of Life), and enjoyed another almost despite myself (The Help), the majority of the nominations this year went to movies that we will probably never watch again and to performers who will probably never have a year as good as this one.  Perhaps that is why the various Academy montages all seemed to feature scenes taken from films that received not a single Oscar nomination.  (More time was devoted to the latest Mission Impossible than to Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close.)  It just gave the whole ceremony a rather odd feel.  It reminded me of when I was in high school and the drama club would give out little trophies and certificates at the end of the year.  I received a little trophy for being the Best Actress in Advanced Theatre during my junior year.  I also got a certificate for “Biggest Flirt.”  (My acceptance speech, by the way, was: “Couldn’t it have been for best lay?”  Ahhh, High School.)

As host, Bill Crystal was pretty bleh and he kinda looked like Robert Blake from Lost Highway.

Whenever Rooney Mara popped up on screen, me and Evelyn would yell, “You need boobs to wear that dress, honey!”

Meryl Streep’s acceptance speech was long-winded and she came across as being a bit full of herself, I think.  Now I know that you’re saying, “Well, gee, Lisa, she’s the greatest actress ever so she’s earned the right to be full of herself!”  Actually, if you really pay attention to Streep’s performances, you’ll see that the main reason she has a reputation for being a great actress is because she never allows you to forget that she’s acting.

I missed James Franco.

“OMG! Just like me!” Moments

As I mentioned on twitter, Evelyn and I have decided that we were the Jennifer Lopez and Cameron Diaz of my living room.  We’re still debating on just who exactly was Cameron and who was J.Lo. 

Lessons Learned

Everything is better with James Franco!

84th Annual Academy Awards: The Winners

Here’s what won earlier at the 84th Annual Academy Awards:

Best Picture: The Artist

Best Director: Michel Hazanavicius for The Artist

Best Actor: Jean Dujardin in The Artist

Best Actress: Meryl Streep in The Iron Lady

Best Supporting Actor: Christopher Plummer in Beginners

Best Supporting Actress: Octavia Spencer in The Help

Best Adapted Screenplay: The Descendants

Best Original Screenplay: Midnight in Paris

Best Original Score: The Artist

Best Original Song: “Man or Muppet” from The Muppets

Best Art Direction: Hugo

Best Cinematography: Hugo

Best Costume Design: Hugo

Best Editing: The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo

Best Makeup: The Iron Lady

Best Sound Editing: Hugo

Best Sound Mixing: Hugo

Best Visual Effects: Hugo

Best Animated Short Subject: La Luna

Best Live Action Short: The Shore

Best Documentary Short Subject: Saving Face

Best Documentary Feature: Undefeated

Best Foreign Language Film: A Separation

Best Animated Film: Rango

As far as how my predictions stacked up against the actual Oscars, I came out of tonight with a score of — ahem — 11 for 24.

Trailer: Mass Effect 3 “Take Earth Back” (Live-Action Trailer)

Last week we saw the cinematic “Take Earth Back” trailer for the upcoming Mass Effect 3 rpg title from BioWare and EA. During tonight’s latest episode of AMC’s The Walking Dead we got to see another trailer for this upcoming game. This time around we get a live-action trailer about Earth being visited upon by the main antagonists of the series and that’s the giant, extragalactic biomechanical alien race who call themselves “The Reapers”.

For a live-action trailer this one does a great job at emphasizing the fact that Earth is royally screwed and that the player in the guise of Cmdr. Shepard must lead an army to take it back from the brink of destruction. I like how even in this future Earth once the proverbial crap hits the fan everyone will begin to riot instead of actually trying to band together to fight the invaders.

Mass Effect 3 is set for a March 6, 2012 North American release date.