992 – Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse (2018)

MV5BMjMwNDkxMTgzOF5BMl5BanBnXkFtZTgwNTkwNTQ3NjM@._V1_Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse is a 2018 American computer-animated superhero film based on the Marvel Comics character Miles Morales / Spider-Man,

It is the first animated feature film in the Spider-Man franchise, and is set in a shared multiverse called the “Spider-Verse”, which has alternate universes. The film was directed by Bob PersichettiPeter Ramsey, and Rodney Rothman from a screenplay by Phil Lord and Rothman and a story by Lord. The film stars Shameik MooreJake JohnsonHailee SteinfeldMahershala AliBrian Tyree HenryLily TomlinLuna Lauren VelezJohn MulaneyKimiko GlennNicolas Cage, and Liev Schreiber. In Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse, Miles Morales becomes one of many Spider-Men as they team up to save New York City from Kingpin.

Lord and Miller wanted the film to feel like “you walked inside a comic book”, and were excited to tell the story in a way that the live-action films could not. Persichetti concurred, feeling that animation was the best medium with which to honor the style of the comics, allowing the production team to adapt 70-year-old techniques seen in comic artwork into the film’s visual language. Completing the animation for the film required up to 140 animators, the largest crew ever used by Sony Pictures Animation for a film to date.

l0qpctcgss911The CGI animation for the film was combined with “line work and painting and dots and all sorts of comic book techniques” to make it look like it was created by hand, which was described as “a living painting”. This was achieved by artists taking rendered frames from the CGI animators and working on top of them in 2D, with the goal of making every frame of the film “look like a comic panel”. Lord described this style of animation as “totally revolutionary”, and explained that the design combines the in-house style of Sony Pictures Animation with the “flavor” of comic artists such as Sara Pichelli (who co-created Miles Morales) and Robbi Rodriguez. To make it feel more like a comic book, it was animated without motion blur, and rather than using animation principles like squash and stretch they came up with substitute versions of them; “so that in texture and feel it felt different, but it still achieved the same goal — to either feel weight or anticipation or impact or things like that”.

The film’s directors all felt that the film would be one of the few that audiences actually “need” to watch in 3D due to the immersive nature of the animated world created, and the way that the hand-drawn animation elements created specifically for the film create a unique experience; Persichetti described this experience as a combination of the effects of an old-fashioned hand-drawn multiplane camera and a modern virtual reality environment. (read more)

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Sequel and spin-off

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953 – Saints Row IV (2013 video game)

joc-pc-deep-silver-saints-row-iv-178770Saints Row IV is an open world action-adventure video game with third-person shooter elements developed by Volition and published by Deep Silver. It is the fourth title in the Saints Row series. In the game, the playable character is the leader of the 3rd Street Saints, a street gang that has become the world’s most powerful and popular organization, and must fend off an alien invasion after becoming President of the United States and receiving superpowers.

The player is free to explore their environment while completing main and side missions at their leisure. The game incorporates elements from science fiction video games and films, and continues the series’ reputation for over-the-top parody. It was released in August 2013 for Microsoft Windows, PlayStation 3, and Xbox 360, and was later ported to PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and Linux in 2015.

The game is set in a nearly identical simulation of Steelport, the fictional city setting from Saints Row: The Third, though individual story missions have new, custom-designed levels. 

Saints Row IV‘s story parodies science fiction video games, especially Mass Effect 2, as well as films like The Matrix and Zero Dark Thirty, and other “nerd culture”. Some story missions are propelled by individual characters’ existential crises, as each Saint character is stuck in a personal simulation of their own hell, and must be rescued by the player. Other elements borrowed from video game culture include BioWare-style character romances games and a Metal Gear-style mission with an unhelpful partner.

Saints Row IV received several limited and summative edition releases, and was briefly banned in Australia.

System Requirements (Minimum) CPU: Intel Core 2 Quad Q6600 | AMD Athlon II x3. / OS: Windows Vista (x86 or x64) / VIDEO CARD: NVIDIA GTX 260 | AMD Radeon HD 5800 series. / FREE DISK SPACE: 10 GB. / DEDICATED VIDEO RAM: 896 MB.

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951 – R.I.P.D. (2013)

timespace coordinates: early 2010’s Bostonripd_ver2_xlgR.I.P.D. is a 2013 American fantasy buddy cop action comedy film starring Jeff Bridges and Ryan ReynoldsRobert Schwentke directed the film based on a screenplay adapted from the comic book Rest in Peace Department by Peter M. Lenkov. The film also stars Kevin BaconMary-Louise ParkerStéphanie Szostak, and Marisa Miller.

This movie has been compared to Men in Black (1997), in that they both deal with secret government agencies contending with otherworldly beings. Jeff Bridges is playing the same kind of character that his good friend Tommy Lee Jones played in the Men In Black trilogy.

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895 – Venom (2018)

e453aa8143adfaf6a9dd036b981ea1f5Venom is a 2018 American superhero film based on the Marvel Comics character of the same name, it is the first film in Sony’s Marvel Universe, adjunct to the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU). Directed by Ruben Fleischer, it stars Tom Hardy as Eddie Brock / Venom, alongside Michelle WilliamsRiz AhmedScott Haze, and Reid Scott. In Venom, journalist Brock gains superpowers after being bound to an alien symbiote whose species plans to invade Earth. The film released in the 30th Anniversary year of Venom’s debut in Marvel comics (May 1988).True-Believers-Venom-Dark-Origin-1-Reprints-Venom-Dark-Origin-3-2018-NM-292531863765The film was primarily inspired by the comic miniseries Venom: Lethal Protector (1993) and story arc “Planet of the Symbiotes” (1995). (wiki)

The filmmakers cite the films of horror directors John Carpenter and David Cronenberg as an influence on the film, as well as the horror comedy films An American Werewolf in London (1981) and Ghost Busters (1984).Venom_(film)_poster_012Future

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At the end of the closing credits, a preview of Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse(2018) appears.

894 – The Weird World of Blowfly (2010)

MV5BMTUwMzU4MDY2M15BMl5BanBnXkFtZTcwODE1NzM1NQ@@._V1_The Weird World of Blowfly is a 2010 documentary film about rapper and hip hop musician Clarence Reid, a/k/a Blowfly, directed by Jonathan FurmanskiIn addition to Reid, the film features collaborators Tom Bowker and Otto von Schirach along with perspectives from Chuck DIce-T, and Die Ärzte. (wiki)

Clarence Reid is a musician who wrote and produced romantic and spiritual songs for some of the greatest Southern soul and R&B acts of the 1960s and ’70s. He is also the gonzo performer Blowfly, Clarence’s freaky alter ego and the original X-rated rapper. “The Weird World of Blowfly” explores both sides of this hilarious and controversial artist, providing a rare, inside peek at the infamous linguist’s daily life. Now 69-years-old, with a gold-spangled superhero costume and a catalog of the world’s raunchiest tunes, Blowfly tours the world, still struggling for success and recognition after 50 years of making music. The film highlights both Clarence’s and Blowfly’s unique contributions to music history, including Top-10 R&B hits and what might be the world’s first rap song, recorded in 1965. Shot over the course of two years, the film follows Clarence at home and around the world, featuring dozens of classic Blowfly songs as well as new hits. A revealing portrait of an unheralded man… (imdb)

890 – Origin: Spirits of the Past (2006)

It is 300 years into the future. Earth’s environment had been devastated by mankind’s own foolish plans and humankind is beleaguered by the sentient forests which they have awoken. The world balance is tipped when a young boy named Agito stumbles across a machine that glowed in a strange blue hue inside a forbidden sanctuary. The machine, which has preserved a beautiful girl named Toola from the past, is activated. Toola has a “mission” that had been entrusted to her by the past …bf0f72f7ba2f481ee0e1cee949de8bc0Origin: Spirits of the Past, known in Japan as Silver-Haired Agito (Japanese: 銀色の髪のアギト Hepburn: Gin’iro no Kami no Agito), is a 2006 Japanese animated science fiction film directed by Keiichi Sugiyama, written by Nana Shiina and Naoko Kakimoto, and produced by Gonzo. (wiki)

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