Resin Heroes

Sean Phillips Night of the Living Dead Blu-ray cover painting






Direct Beam Comms #114



TV

Black Mirror fourth season ***/****

I recently finished up the fourth season of the excellent Netflix Black Mirror series and thought it was the strongest one yet. There were a few episodes that didn’t quite work, but overall I thought from beginning to end Black Mirror is still one of the creepiest/scariest/prescient things on TV right now.

Hang the DJ

Metalhead”: “Metalhead” isn’t the typical episode of Black Mirror. Shot in black and white, this one is a straight-up action piece that’s kind’a sort’a a British version of The Terminator, and doesn’t let up until the end. I like that series creator Charlie Brooker feels comfortable enough with the universe that is Black Mirror in that there’s no one standard episode of the show and he can stretch out with a slightly different story than usual like with “Metalhead.”

“Hang the DJ”: Honesty, half the fun for me is trying to figure out where each episode of Black Mirror is headed and I couldn’t figure out where “Hang the DJ” was going at all. Even right up to the very end of the episode I had no idea what was about to happen and that’s part of the reason I liked this episode so much so much. Four seasons in and Black Mirror can still surprise.

“Black Museum”: The “Black Museum” episode is closest to the “Black Christmas” episode of a few years ago where a few different interrelated stories are all told under the umbrella of an overall encompassing story. Here, it’s a weary traveler touring the titular Black Museum that contains all sorts of forbidden knowledge and what happens when the disgraced museum proprietor reveals one too many secrets.

USS Callister

“USS Callister”: The episode that was announced first before the series had premiered and got the most hype this season was “USS Callister.” What everyone, myself included, thought was going to be a riff on the original Star Trek series turned into something that was darker and deeper in meaning that anything I could have imagined beforehand.

“Crocodile”: Crocodile is an interesting take on what extremes people are willing to go in order to keep their lives and lifestyle intact. And, since this is all taking place in the universe of Black Mirror, there’s an interesting price to be paid for those actions.

“Arkangel”: The one episode this season of Black Mirror that I didn’t think quite worked was “Arkangel.” This episode about a mother who implants a device in her young daughter’s head so she can see out of her eyes with something akin to an iPad goes pretty much as expected as the girl gets older and doesn’t quite care for the fact that her mom can literally keep track of her wherever she goes 24/7.

Westworld second season TV spot

Movies

Venom trailer

Avengers: Infinity War TV spot

Mission Impossible: Fallout trailer

Solo: A Star Wars Story trailer

Deadpool 2 trailer

Night of the Living Dead

One of, if not the most, influential horror movies in history gets a Blu-ray release this week. While there’s been many different editions of Night of the Living Dead released to date, everything from VHS to DVD both in original black and white and colorized, this brand new 2018 edition marks the first time since the movie was originally released that viewers can see the film in all it’s gory at home.

From The Criterion Collection:

New 4K digital restoration, supervised by director George A. Romero, coscreenwriter John A. Russo, sound engineer Gary R. Streiner, and producer Russell W. Streiner

New restoration of the monaural soundtrack, supervised by Romero and Gary Streiner and presented uncompressed on the Blu-ray

Night of Anubis, a never-before-presented work-print edit of the film

Never-before-seen 16 mm dailies reel

The Movie Chain: #6: Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy (2012)

Last week: Dawn of the Planet of the Apes

The Movie Chain is a weekly, micro-movie review where each week’s film is related to the previous week’s movie in some way.

One of my favorite TV mini-series of all-time is Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy that starred Alec Guinness as George Smiley from 1979. So I was kind’a predestined to like the 2011 film of the same name that starred Gary Oldman from last week’s Dawn of the Planet of the Apes in the Smiley role.

Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy takes place in the 1970s within the “Circus,” or the code-name for British intelligence, where a Soviet mole has be discovered in their top echelon. Those in charge might know the mole’s there, but no one’s quite sure exactly who it is that’s feeding the Soviets all the British secrets they can handle. Enter Smiley who was booted out of the agency some time before and can be brought into investigate since he’s the one person everyone’s sure isn’t the traitor.

I like the Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy movie a lot, if I think it moves at probably a too fast pace to tell all its story. I think this comes after having read the novel movie was based on and having watched the six hour mini-series many times too. Scenes in the mini-series that take good chunks of hour-long episodes fly past in minutes, or seconds in the movie. However, this might not bother the casual viewer if they’re unfamiliar with the source material.

One thing I think other filmmakers can learn from Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy is that there can be a lot going on in a movie yet the material doesn’t have to be spoon fed to the audience. There’s quite a few characters and scenes in Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy, the dialog is steeped in inside jargon and the pace of the film is fast yet since the underlying story is sound and it all works.

Next week: “You can practically see it from here.”

Rumor Control

Looking at upcoming TV series premieres it seems as if things are going to be pretty light the next few weeks which I couldn’t quite understand at first. On the one hand there’s supposed to be 500 series all premiering in 2018 which would mean that right around ten shows need to debut each week to hit this number. But I figured out why things are so light — I think everyone’s trying to keep out of the way of the Olympics since any series going up against that the next few weeks is sure to be caulked in the ratings.

Then again, if you’re like me and have no interest in the Olympics, having a few series premiere against it might be some genius counter-programming to gain a few more eyeballs to your show than might normally get since there’s not really anything much going on those two weeks of the Olympics.

I’m just sayin’.

Cool Movie & TV Posters of the Week




Mondo Night of the Living Dead poster






Behind the scenes pics of Night of the Living Dead



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31 days of Night of the Living Dead #31



Night of the Living Dead