timespace coordinates: 2010’s Cornwall / London / Wiltshire
The Kid Who Would Be King is a 2019 fantasy adventure film written and directed by Joe Cornish. A British-American venture, the film stars Louis Ashbourne Serkis, Tom Taylor, Rebecca Ferguson, and Patrick Stewart. The plot follows a young boy who finds King Arthur‘s legendary sword Excalibur, and must then use it to stop an ancient enchantress from destroying the world.
According to review aggregator Rotten Tomatoes, 90% of critics have given the film a positive review based on 153 reviews, and an average rating of 7.8/10. The website’s critical consensus reads, “The Kid Who Would Be King recalls classic all-ages adventures — and repurposes a timeless legend — for a thoroughly enjoyable new addition to the family movie canon.”
timespace coordinates: parallel universe – Victorian Jordan College in Oxford > retrofuturistic London > experimental station Bolvanga – far North
The Golden Compass is a 2007 fantasy adventure film based on Northern Lights, the first novel in Philip Pullman’s trilogy His Dark Materials. Written and directed by Chris Weitz, it stars Nicole Kidman, Dakota Blue Richards, Daniel Craig, Sam Elliott, Eva Green, and Ian McKellen.
The film depicts the adventures of Lyra Belacqua, an orphan living in a parallel universe where a dogmatic ruling power called the Magisterium opposes free inquiry. Children in that universe are being kidnapped by an unknown group called the Gobblers who are supported by the Magisterium. Lyra joins a tribe of sea-farers on a trip to the far North, the land of the armoured polar bears, in search of the missing children.
Before its release, the film received criticism from secularist organisations and fans of the His Dark Materials trilogy for the dilution of elements of the story which were critical of religion, as well as from some religious organisations for the source material’s anti-religious themes. The studio ordered significant changes late in post-production, which Weitz later called a “terrible” experience. Although the film’s visual effects won both a BAFTA and an Academy Award, critical reception was mixed and revenue lower than anticipated. The film trilogy has not been continued, prompting actor Sam Elliott to blame censorship and the Catholic Church. (wiki)
Video game The game was released prior to the film and features a slightly different sequence of events towards the end of the story, as well as additional footage at the end of the game not seen in the film. (playthrough)
Controversies / Cancelled sequels
imdb / His Dark Materials (TV Series 2019– )
timespace coordinates: 1977, Berlin during the height of the German Autum
Suspiria (Latin pronunciation: [sʊsˈpɪria]) is a 2018 supernatural psychological horror film directed by Luca Guadagnino with a screenplay by David Kajganich, inspired by the 1977 Italian film of the same title directed by Dario Argento. Guadagnino’s film, which is set in 1977, stars Dakota Johnson as an American woman who enrolls at a prestigious dance academy in Berlin run by a coven of witches. Tilda Swinton co-stars in three roles, including as the company’s lead choreographer and as a male psychotherapist involved in the academy. Mia Goth and Chloë Grace Moretz appear in supporting roles as students, while Angela Winkler, Renée Soutendijk, Ingrid Caven, and Sylvie Testud portray some of the academy’s matrons. The star of the original film, Jessica Harper, has a cameo appearance.
An “homage” to the original rather than a straightforward remake, the movie explores themes of generational guilt in Germany during the Cold War. The film also focuses on themes of motherhood, evil, and the dynamics of matriarchies.Unlike the original film, which used exaggerated colors, Guadagnino conceived Suspiria as visually “winterish” and bleak, absent of primary colors. The film incorporates stylized dance sequences choreographed by Damien Jalet, which form part of its representation of witchcraft. The musical score was composed by Radiohead singer Thom Yorke, who took inspiration from krautrock. (wiki)
imdb / body horror
timespace coordinates: 1970’s Freiburg, Germany
Movie Poster Design
Suspiria (Latin: [sʊsˈpɪria]) is a 1977 Italian supernatural horror film directed by Dario Argento, co-written by Argento and Daria Nicolodi, partially based on Thomas De Quincey‘s 1845 essay Suspiria de Profundis (Sighs from the Depths) and co-produced by Claudio and Salvatore Argento. The film stars Jessica Harper as an American ballet student who transfers to a prestigious dance academy in Germany but realizes, after a series of brutal murders, that the academy is a front for a supernatural conspiracy. It also features Stefania Casini, Flavio Bucci, Miguel Bosé, Alida Valli, Udo Kier and Joan Bennett, in her final film role.The film is the first of the trilogy Argento refers to as The Three Mothers, which also comprises Inferno (1980) and The Mother of Tears (2007). Suspiria has become one of Argento’s most successful feature films, receiving critical acclaim for its visual and stylistic flair, use of vibrant colors and its score by the prog-rock band Goblin.Suspiria has become a cult classic, and is recognised as an influential film in the horror genre. It served as the inspiration for a 2018 film of the same title, directed by Luca Guadagnino. (wiki)
timespace coordinates: 1810s French-occupied Germany
The Brothers Grimm is a 2005 adventure fantasy film directed by Terry Gilliam. The film stars Matt Damon, Heath Ledger, and Lena Headey in an exaggerated and fictitious portrait of the Brothers Grimm as traveling con-artists in French-occupied Germany, during the early 19th century. However, the brothers eventually encounter a genuine fairy tale curse which requires real courage instead of their usual bogus exorcisms. Supporting characters are played by Peter Stormare, Jonathan Pryce, and Monica Bellucci.
imdb / Guy Hendrix Dyas
timespace coordinates: 1990’s > 2010’s west Uintah County bordering the Ute Indian Reservation
Branded “the Area 51 of the paranormal”, the Skinwalker Ranch in Utah is thoroughly investigated both by the Pentagon and CIA. Strange lights and animal mutilations, among other various unexplained phenomena, are known to take place at the mysterious ranch.
imdb / the skin-walker of Navajo