The Comic-Con major trailers so far: Top Gun, Jay and Silent Bob, Cats and His Dark Materials.

As one of my friends put it, Comic-Con is like Christmas in the summer time, and this year is shaping up to be no different.

Of course the big news was Tom Cruise showing up and delivering what must be one of the most anticipated trailers of all time: Top Gun: Maverick.  From the moment the trailer begins and we hear that iconic bell sound which signifies the Top Gun anthem, the trailer holds you and doesn’t let go.  From the looks of it Maverick is the old guard of fighter pilot in a world which is quickly moving towards drone flight.  We are treated to some fantastic aerial shots (all of which are real and not CGI), and of course a shot of Maverick taking off wearing his iconic helmet, and yes, there is a volleyball scene as well.  Cruise described this movie as a love letter to flying, which, let’s be honest the first one was as well.  Frankly, that’s all I need to hear to be in.

 

The second film, which I have been waiting for for at least 10 or 12 years returns us to the world of two of my favorite characters of all time: Jay and Silent Bob.  For those of you unfamiliar with the View Askew universe (Clerks, Chasing Amy, Mallrats, Dogma, Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back, and Clerks 2) do yourself a favor and go see all of those films (in that order).  Kevin Smith is one of those filmmakers that inspires me to create.  This time around Jay and Silent Bob are on a journey to stop a reboot of a film that is being made of the film they tried to stop getting made in Jay and Silent Bob strike back.  Along the way they meet old an new friends.  This film is going to be loaded with cameos; from the trailer alone we see Craig Robinson, Val Kilmer, Rosario Dawson, Chris Hemsworth, Tommy Chong, Shannon Elizabeth, Jason Lee, Harley-Quinn Smith,  Joe Manganiello, Justin Long and of course Matt Damon and Ben Affleck.  Just a quick warning, this trailer is definitely NSFW (Not safe for work)

 

And for all of us theater geeks, the good people and Universal bring us the film version of Cats, which boasts an incredible cast and one of the most interesting looks of a musical film adaptation that I have seen.  It will be interesting to see how this film does considering that most I know either love it or hate it.  The cast includes Sir Ian McKellen, Dame Judi Dench, Jason Derulo, Jennifer Hudson, James Cordon, Idris Elba, Rebel Wilson, newcomer Francesca Hayward and Taylor Swift.  The trailer, though, is set to one of the greatest songs ever written, sung by one of the greatest singers ever.  Enjoy!

 

The final trailer released today is the much anticipated HBO series adaptation of His Dark Materials, which, yes, they tried before to adapt with The Golden Compass.  This adaptation looks a lot darker and a lot more faithful to the book series.  And yes, before you even say it, I know there are shots in here which look much like Harry Potter, but believe me, this ain’t Harry Potter.  The series will air this fall on HBO who is desperately looking for something to fill the void left by Game of Thrones.  This also boasts an impressive cast featuring James McAvoy, Dafne Keen (X-23 from Logan) and Lin Manuel Miranda.

 

 

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Mulan: Disney first remake action film?

This weekend, the good people over at Disney released the first teaser/trailer for their live action of Mulan.  Unlike many of their other remakes, the tone of this trailer was more serious with no hint of any musical numbers (which saddens me a bit because I will not get to hear “Let’s get down to business…”).  Another item which stands out from the trailer is the action.  This seems to be heavy on well choreographed action sequences with the lead (newcomer to American audiences, Yifei Liu) showing some impressive sword skills.

If Disney can continue to change the tone of each of their live action remakes, so that they do not become stale or just unnecessary shot for shot versions of their animated films, then they might have found a successful formula for years to come.  View the trailer for yourself below:

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Indie Game Review Sunday feat Brothers: A tale of two sons & Hue

Because I have spent so much time playing mainstream games, I have that I am going to dedicate Sundays to playing and talking about indie games.  The first two up are are one that interested me from the first time I saw the trailer and the other a game that my kid wanted me to try.

The first game is Brothers: A Tale of Two Sons.  A game which is interesting because one, it uses a made up language (based off of real language, if I understand correctly) and secondly because of the fact that you have to use each of the control joysticks to control each brother, which believe me can get confusing, especially if your characters are one the opposite side of the screen from the joystick you are using to control them (just watch the video below if you do not understand what I mean.

Each brother has their strengths and their weaknesses, and often times the two must work together to solve problems (once again, see the video below).  The game is beautifully drawn and it ends up being both difficult and enjoyable at the same time.  Hint: if you are ambidextrous the game might be a little easier.  Check out some gameplay below:

 

The other game that I played was Hue, a visually appealing and incredibly fun platformer that uses color as an element of gameplay.  The game, which is very much story driven and philosophical, is about a young man by the name of Hue, who is searching for his mother while at the same time discovering color in a world full of darkness and grey.  As the game goes on Hue must change the colors of the world to pass certain areas and move on, thus getting closer to solving the main mystery.  The game controls are quite responsive, and it ends up being quite engaging.  I could attempt to explain the gameplay as much as  I wanted, but one really has to see it played to understand it.  So, enjoy the video below:

 

 

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The Hunger Games returns

It seems that the world will be returning to Panem, albeit 60-some years before the events of The Hunger Games trilogy that the most have come to know.  Suzanne Collins has announced that she will be writing a prequel to her famous Hunger Games novel set  years before the events of The Hunger Games, but after an uprising was quelled by the Capitol.  Beyond this, not much is known about the story, but we do know that it will be released May 19th 2020 ,and Lionsgate is already in talks for the film rights.  the public will have to wait to find out what lies in store for Panem until then.

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Doctor Sleep (the sequel to The Shinning)

This sequel to The Shinning brings us back into the life of a now grown Dan Torrance (the young boy from The Shinning who we see now in the throws of alcoholism much like his father.  But unlike his father, he still has the gift of “the shinning” which is a psychic ability of sorts.

While Dan may not care much for his own life now,  the entrance of a young girl in his who has the same abilities as he does will give him something to care about, and more importantly to protect.

View the trailer for yourself below:

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Elite: Dangerous

Years ago, my father came home with a game for me and my Commodore 64 called Elite.  It was a space simulation, but instead of just flying and shooting (which you also did in the game), you could also trade elements and items between different star bases or you could rescue people in space.  For my young mind, the sky was the limit with this game which you can see below.

But alas, there was one problem: no matter how hard I tried, I could not land back inside of a base to trade.  Time after time again, I tried to no avail, and eventually simply gave up, somewhat sad that I would never be able to experience the game in full.

Until… one day when I was wandering around the Xbox store and found a game called Elite: Dangerous.  Could this be a sequel to the game a had tried and failed at so many years ago?  Spoiler alert: it was.  I quickly downloaded the game and found myself immersed in a world worthy of the Elite name.  They had managed to keep many of the features which I had fallen in love with as a young person, while updating the political, and economic features of the game.  Now you could easily visit different space ports and with one of the later updates actually land on planetary bases and move around the planet to complete missions or collect valuable materials to trade.  The game is now rich in different ways to play: you can be a mercenary, a trader, a miner, or even a tour guide for rich passengers who will pay you to see the galaxy.

All in all, the game now satisfied both the child in me looking to explore and the adult in me looking for redemption.  See you in the stars!

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There’s a sequel to Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild coming

Not to be outdone by the presentations of Cyberpunk 2077 or Fallout 76, the good people at Nintendo ended their E3 presentation with a glimpse at the sequel to one of the greatest games ever made (and I don’t say that lightly).  They seem to be opting for a direct sequel this time, using the same animation style that brought them such acclaim for BOTW, as of this article, a release date has not been announced, but don’t let that distract you from enjoying the trailer below.

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