Her Name Is Jessica Jones


Jessica Jones

The Daredevil series on Netflix was a hit with both critics and audiences. It helped lay the foundation in the street-level corner of the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Now, we have the second of four planned original series with the upcoming Jessica Jones which looks to continue the mature themes and tone of Daredevil.

The series will star Krysten Ritter in the title role with Mike Colter appearing for the first time as the Marvel superhero Luke Cage aka Power Man. It also stars David Tennant in the role of main antagonist and just all-around creepy villain Zebediah Kilgrave aka The Purple Man.

Where Daredevil only scratched the surface of superpowers in the more down-to-earth, street-level part of the MCU, it looks like Jessica Jones will introduce a wider variety of abilities (superhuman strength and endurance, unbreakable skin, mind-control just to name a few) and an even more mature series than Daredevil with it’s depiction of psychological damage and trauma to it’s treatment of Jessica Jones’ sexuality throughout the series.

While the Avengers fight gods, alien invasions, sentient killer A.I. and terrorist groups bent on world-domination, the Matt Murdock’s and Jessica Jones’ look to keep the street-level safe for the people of Hell’s Kitchen.

Jessica Jones is set to premiere and release all 13-episodes on Netflix this November 20, 2015. Time to set that date for another Netflix binge watch.

The Things You Find On Netflix: The Loft (dir by Erik Van Looy)


The_Loft_film_poster

The Loft‘s journey to Neftlix was a long one.

A remake of a Belgian film, The Loft was originally filmed in 2011 and was meant to come out in that year.  It was due to be released by Joel Silver’s Dark Castle Entertainment and Warner Bros.  However, when Silver had a falling out with Warner Bros and moved his operations over to Universal, he took The Loft with him.  And it turned out that Universal was in no hurry to distribute The Loft.  After sitting on the film for three years, Universal announced that they would release it in August of 2014 but, at the last minute, they changed their mind and instead released the horror film As Above, So Below in the spot that was originally set aside for The Loft.  Dark Castle then dropped the film, leaving The Loft in limbo until Open Road Pictures picked up the distribution rights and gave it a limited release in January of 2015.  The critics hated it, audiences were indifferent, and The Loft quickly vanished from theaters.  It’s now available on Netflix.

And, having watched the film, I can understand why the studios weren’t exactly enthused about it.  It’s not the type of film that works on the big screen.  The characters are too unlikable.  The plot is an unstable combination of silliness and melodrama.  The big twists are more likely to inspire groans than cheers.  It’s just not the type of film that you want to spend too much money on.

And yet, it’s the perfect film for Netflix.  What may seem over-the-top and annoying when viewed in a public theater becomes a lot more entertaining when viewed in the privacy on your own home.  The Loft is a film that works best if you don’t spend too much time thinking about how little sense it all makes.  It’s the perfect film to watch while you’re doing something else.

And if that sounds like faint praise, it’s not.  I thoroughly enjoyed The Loft without once mistaking it for being a “good” film.  Instead, it’s an over-the-top melodrama, with all that entails.  It’s ludicrous, it’s silly, and — when taken on its own terms — it’s also a lot of fun.

The film is about five friends and the loft to which they all have a key.  All five of the friends are married and all five of them have secrets.  Vincent (Karl Urban) is the unofficial leader of this group of friends, an architect who is also a compulsive cheater.  Luke (Wentworth Miller) is a nervous guy who appears to worship Vincent.  Marty (Eric Stonestreet) is an alcoholic who always manages to say the wrong thing.  Chris (James Marsden) is a psychiatrist who often seems to feel that he’s morally superior to his other friends.  And Phillip (Mattias Schoenarts) is Chris’s half-brother, a mentally unstable and violent guy who snorts cocaine and may have incestuous feelings towards his younger sister.

The five men use the loft to cheat on their wives.  The men are all confident that only they know about the existence of the loft and that they are the only ones who have a key.  So, naturally enough, they are all a little shocked when a woman turns up dead in the loft.  As the men gather in the loft, they debate who killed her and we get numerous flashbacks to how this all came to be.

Of course, it all leads to many secrets being revealed.  This is one of those films that simply cannot stop with one plot twist.  Instead, every twist leads to another twist until eventually, it becomes nearly impossible to keep up with who knows what.  In fact, the film features so many twists that it all quickly gets a bit silly.  But, at the same time, it’s also undeniably entertaining.  Strangely enough, the fact that it doesn’t make much sense only add to the film’s melodramatic charm.

As for the five men — well, none of them are particularly likable but at least they’re all interesting to watch.  Wentworth Miller is properly strange, Matthias Schoenarts is properly sleazy, and Eric Stonestreet is properly pathetic.  James Marsden often seems wasted in mainstream films (like Straw Dogs and The Butler) but he’s actually very charming when he appears in B-movies like this one and Walk of Shame.  And finally, you’ve got Karl Urban, doing great work and turning Vincent into the epitome of every middle-aged guy who has ever tried to flirt with me while I was waiting at a red light.

The Loft may not have got much respect when it was released into theaters but it’s entertaining enough for Netflix.

Trailer: The Darkest Hour (Official)


Timur Bekmambetov is not the director of this upcoming alien invasion film The Darkest Hour. The director is actually one Chris Gorak, but the trailer is definitely pushing Bekmambetov’s name as if he is the director. Then again I think the film does seem to have Bekmambetov’s stylistic flourishes written all over it.

The Darkest Hour looks to be set in Russia from beginning to end as we follow a group of young Americans on vacation and hitting up all the party night spots in Moscow. This makes for an interesting premise in that we see an alien invasion from a wholly different perspective. It’s an alien invasion seen through the Russian perspective even if half the cast are American tourists.

I hadn’t heard much about this film until now, but after seeing the trailer I’m definitely going to run out and see it when it comes out.

The Darkest Hour is set for a December 23, 2011 release date.