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Movies, TV and Comic Books

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    We've had character posters for Russell Crowe (Man of Steel), Jennifer Connelly (Requiem for a Dream), Emma Watson (Harry Potter), Douglas Booth (Romeo and Juliet), Ray Winstone (Snow White and the Huntsman) and Logan Lerman (Percy Jackson) [see here, here and here], and now it's the turn of Anthony Hopkins (Thor: The Dark World) to grace his very own one-sheet for director Darren Aronofsky's upcoming biblical epic Noah....

    Anthony Hopkins Noah character poster

    "NOAH is a close adaptation of the Biblical story of Noah’s Ark. In a world ravaged by human sin, Noah is given a divine mission: to build an Ark to save creation from the coming flood."

    Noah is set for release on March 28th in North America and April 4th in the UK, with a cast that also includes Kevin Durand (Resident Evil: Retribution), Nick Nolte (Warrior), Frank Langella (Robot & Frank), Maddison Davenport (The Possession), Mark Margolis (Breaking Bad), Marton Csokas (Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter) and Dakota Goyo (Real Steel). Watch the trailer here.

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    With little over a fortnight to go until its release, Warner Bros. has debuted what seems like the 300th poster for its upcoming sword and sandals sequel 300: Rise of an Empire, although this one's an IMAX poster, so we'll let them off...

    300: Rise of an Empire IMAX poster

    Based on Frank Miller's latest graphic novel Xerxes, and told in the breathtaking visual style of the blockbuster 300, this new chapter of the epic saga takes the action to a fresh battlefield - on the sea - as Greek general Themistokles attempts to unite all of Greece by leading the charge that will change the course of the war. 300: Rise of an Empire pits Themistokles (Sullivan Stapleton) against the massive invading Persian forces led by mortal-turned-god Xerxes (Rodrigo Santoro), and Artemisia (Eva Green), vengeful commander of the Persian navy.

    300: Rise of an Empire opens on March 7th, with Noam Murro (Smart People) directing a cast that includes the returning Lena Headey, Rodrigo Santoro and David Wenham alongside Sullivan Stapleton (Animal Kingdom), Eva Green (Dark Shadows), Jack O'Connell (Skins), Hans Matheson (Clash of the Titans), and Callan Mulvey (Zero Dark Thirty).Watch the trailer here.

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    20th Century Fox and Chronicle director Josh Trank have finally found their roster for next year's superhero reboot The Fantastic Four, and if you've been following the casting rumours closely, there'll be little surprise in three quarters of the names.

    As rumoured, Michael B. Jordan (Chronicle, Fruitvale Station) is set to play Johnny Storm / The Human Torch, with Miles Teller (The Spectacular Now, That Awkward Moment) securing the role of Reed Richards / Mister Fantastic and Kate Mara (American Horror Story, House of Cards) as Susan Storm / The Invisible Woman. Meanwhile, British actor Jamie Bell (Billy Elliott, The Adventures of Tintin: The Secret of the Unicorn) has been offered the role of Ben Grimm, a.k.a. The Thing.

    According to The Wrap, all four are in final negotiations with Fox, although the site goes on to suggest that Teller could have scheduling issues with the Divergent sequel Insurgent, and the role of the Fantastic Four's leader may have to be recast.

    So, what do you make of our new Fantastic Four? Better than Ioan Gruffudd, Jessica Alba, Chris Evans and Michael Chiklis? Let us know in the comments below or head on over to The Flickering Myth Forum...

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    Luke Owen gives his thoughts on the trailer for Guardians of the Galaxy...

    (if you missed the trailer, view it here)

    It starts off just like any other comic book movie trailer. Dark and dramatic music matches the blue-tinted visuals of a cool-looking character slowly reaching for what he came for. But before he can enjoy his captured piece, he is stopped by armed guards who ask him to drop what he is carrying.

    This is where the trailer shifts.

    In any other comic book movie trailer, we would get a cool quip from our hero or the start of an action scene, but in James Gunn's trailer for Guardians of the Galaxy, we instead get this exchange:

    Guard: Who are you?
    Star-Lord: I'm Star-Lord
    Guard: Who?
    Star-Lord: Star-Lord! Legendary smuggler? Oh, forget it.

    This, ladies and gentleman, is our tone for Guardians of the Galaxy.

    When the film was first announced back at Comic-Con in 2012, it was met with mostly ambivalence as the Guardians of the Galaxy are hardly 'top brass' characters within the Marvel Comics landscape. The fact of the matter is, while "hardcore" comic fans can look on with a knowing shit-eating grin because they know who Rocket Raccoon is, the majority of the movie going public have no clue. The first trailer for Guardians of the Galaxy needed to not only set the tone of the movie, but also introduce the characters.

    After the production title cards, we have a quick cut montage of John C. Reilly and Peter Serafinowicz running down our anti-hero's wrap sheets in an effort to give us a better understanding of who they are. Although brief, the trailer gives us all we need to know: Drax is a meat-headed psychopath on a revenge mission, Gamora is a hired assassin, Rocket is a talking raccoon, Groot is his counter-part and Peter Quill is a belligerent buffoon who thinks it's funny to flip off the guys who have arrested you. So as an audience we're now clued in on their names, their character traits and that this is a team of misfits who are working together. For what reason we're unsure, but we know they're working together.

    As mentioned earlier, getting the movie's tone right was clearly very important for James Gunn when putting this trailer together and it's unlike any comic book movie trailer we've become accustomed to. This isn't a The Dark Knight Rises or Iron Man 3 where everything is dark, brooding and mysterious. This is a trailer where action scenes are set to Hooked on a Feeling by Blue Swede. It's taken a few people by surprise as it's not what they expected while others have embraced the wild and wacky world that Gunn is presenting. Every film blogger under the sun has called Guardians of the Galaxy Marvel's riskiest movie to date and this tone reflects that risk. It has shades of Raiders of the Lost Ark and Star Wars but it looks to have more in common with Joss Whedon's Serenity in terms of tone and presentation. That final shot of our heroes standing in a line while Star-Lord yawns over Björn Skifs belting out B.J. Thomas lyrics is a clear indication of where we're heading with this picture.

    Like any good teaser trailer, we now know enough about Guardians of the Galaxy without knowing too much. We know who the characters are and that there will be plenty of action and laughs, but that's all we know. Who are the bad guys? What's the plot? How does it tie in with the rest of the Marvel Universe? Will we see Thanos? How does Bradley Cooper sound as Rocket Raccoon? Like the teaser trailer for Godzilla, Gunn has given us all we need to know right now. The rest of the answers will come shortly.

    Guardians of the Galaxy is a risky property for Marvel, but so was Thor. Given the right team and right marketing behind it and the movie will struggle to be anything other than a financial success. With regards to entertainment and quality, the trailer has shown us that we can expect both. The cast look great in their roles, the movie's style is superb and the humorous tone will be a welcome change in a sea of broody superhero movies.

    What a bunch of a-holes.

    Be sure to read the rest of the Flickering Myth writing team's thoughts on Guardians of the Galaxy here and head over to the Flickering Myth Forum to discuss it there.

    Luke Owen is one of Flickering Myth's co-editors and the host of the Flickering Myth Podcast. You can follow him on Twitter @LukeWritesStuff.

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    Before The King of the Monsters stomps into cinemas for director Gareth Edwards' upcoming reboot, Godzilla will find himself back on the big screen courtesy of a 60th anniversary U.S. re-release for Ishirō Honda's 1954 kaiju classic Gojira, and distributor Rialto Pictures has debuted a new theatrical poster and trailer, which you can check out here...

    The Toho cut of Godzilla is set to premiere at the TCM Classic Film Festival on April 12th before expanding around the country (see cities and dates here). Meanwhile, Warner Bros. and Legendary Pictures reboot is due to arrive on May 16th with a cast that includes Aaron Taylor-Johnson (Kick-Ass 2), Bryan Cranston (Breaking Bad), Elizabeth Olsen (Red Lights), David Strathairn (Lincoln), Juliette Binoche (Cosmopolis) and Ken Watanabe (Inception). Watch the trailer here.

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    Ender’s Game is the fast paced sci-fi adventure that will wow audiences with its action packed sequences and stunning array of special effects!

    Available to download now on iTunes, blinkbox, Google Play, Xbox Video and PlayStation Store from Entertainment One, Ender's Game features an amazing cast of established talent including Harrison Ford and a standout performance from Asa Butterfield. This is a sci-fi adventure with guts and a whole lot of heart!

    Own Ender’s Game now in HD from iTunes:

    To celebrate the digital release of the film we are giving you the chance to win an official theatrical quad poster! Read on for details of how to enter the competition...

    In the near future, a hostile alien race have attacked Earth. If not for the legendary heroics of International Fleet Commander, Mazer Rackham (Ben Kingsley), all would have been lost. In preparation for the next attack, Colonel Graff (Harrison Ford) and the International Military are training only the best young children to find the future leader. Ender Wiggin (Asa Butterfield), a shy, but strategically brilliant boy is pulled out of his school to join the elite. Arriving at Battle School, Ender quickly and easily masters increasingly difficult war games, distinguishing himself and winning respect amongst his peers. Ender is soon ordained by Graff as the military's next great hope, resulting in his promotion to Command School. Once there, he's trained by Mazer Rackham, himself, to lead his fellow soldiers into an epic battle that will determine the future of Earth and save the human race. 

    To be in with a chance of winning, firstly make sure you like us on Facebook (or follow us on Twitter)...

    ...Then complete your details below, using the subject heading "ENDER'S GAME". The competition closes at midnight on Saturday, March 1st. UK entrants only please.

    By entering this competition you agree to our terms and conditions, which you can read here.

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  • 02/20/14--05:24: Fleming - Episode 2 Review
  • Gavin Logan reviews the second episode of Fleming...

    While last week's opener did a respectable job at seemingly setting the tone for the following episodes, teasing us with just the right combination of action and sexual accomplishment that we are so use to seeing from a Bond movie, Episode 2 smacks us in the face with it, but not necessarily in a good way. From now on the question of what is true and what is not shouldn't come into play. Some spoilers ahead.

    The episode started off well, once again establishing a connection between the author and the creation as Fleming nonchalantly drops a large stack of chips into the centre of the baccarat table, perfectly poised, waiting with steely eyes on his opponents next move. His opponent in question just happens to be a Nazi Officer, and with a swift flick of his wrist he turns his cards and gobbles up all of Bond's…I mean Fleming's money.

    Later that evening, while Fleming heads to the little boys room after overindulging in alcoholic beverages in the hotel lobby with his quick witted assistant Officer Monday, he come across the dead body of said Nazi Officer, hovered over by a beautiful woman who reveals herself to be a Jew. Fleming, being the kind-hearted hero that he is (and stoically British) offers her his hand and escorts her out, pretending that nothing happened. Quite an exciting first act that seemed to promise more close encounters ahead. Not exactly. Much of the rest of the episode focussed on Fleming's need to be hauled into action abroad (once again comparing himself to his brother) which comes into fruition when he is given the go ahead to visit France and destroy sensitive material incase of Nazi invasion. However while there, he takes matters into his own hands and blatantly lies to a leading French Admiral in his attempt to persuade him not to lend his fleet to the Nazi cause. It sounds like a decent plot point but in reality it doesn't really deliver. Perhaps it was just me but nothing that Fleming did while in France seemed believable or actually important. Here is this one man, who's own biographer Andrew Lycett claims "had no obvious qualification" for the role of Naval Commander, yet still seems to be pulling the strings in the office of his authority figure. Everything seemed to be moving just a little too fast. I have to think that the main purpose of most of these scenes was to show just how close Fleming came to death when a disgruntled refugee at a port in Bordeaux pulled a gun on him but is shot in the chest by Fleming's subordinate.

    Enough of the trivial nonsense, the real story takes place in those silent, intimate glances between Fleming and his future wife Ann O'Neill (Lara Pulver). The tension between the two isn't exactly anything new since the first episode spent a fair amount of time developing the flirtation, but events spiral almost out of control when Fleming returns home from France to find his girlfriend Muriel lying dead in her apartment after a raid, the very raid that Fleming and Ann had shared a bunker during just the night before. Distraught (well as distraught as he will allow himself to be) and in need of some company, Fleming visits Ann at her home but doesn't exactly get the welcome he is seeking. Conjuring all her insincerity and amplifying her manipulative sexual capabilities, the same woman who the previous night begged Fleming to comfort her, refused to show any genuine pity towards the death of a rival. The response elicited a shocking (and that's quite an understatement) reaction from Fleming which involved his belt and her behind and a little bit of hair pulling. What happened next was just plain awkward to watch since it literally came out of nowhere. Fleming held her down and raped her. We'll at least I think he did. The fact that she was smirking after the initial dose of pain might be a legitimate argument against rape and again Pulver was channelling her Irene Adler persona. I don't ever remember James Bond being quite as violent during the act of sex.

    Overall the episode felt a little flat. While I am interested in Fleming's contribution to the War effort, since it's such an obvious influence in his writing, I sense that going forward his private life behind the uniform is where the real excitement lies.

    Gavin Logan - Follow me on Twitter and A-Z Movie Challenge.

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    We've seen a few glimpses of Dane DeHaan's Harry Osborn as his alter-ego the Green Goblin in the trailers for The Amazing Spider-Man 2, but now we have a clear look at the villain as he battles Andrew Garfield's wall-crawler in a new still from the upcoming superhero sequel...

    Dane DeHaan as Green Goblin in The Amazing Spider-Man 2

    What do you make of DeHaan's Green Goblin? Let us know your thoughts below or head on over to The Flickering Myth Forum...

    We’ve always known that Spider-Man’s most important battle has been within himself: the struggle between the ordinary obligations of Peter Parker and the extraordinary responsibilities of Spider-Man. But in The Amazing Spider-Man 2, Peter Parker finds that a greater conflict lies ahead.

    It’s great to be Spider-Man. For Peter Parker, there’s no feeling quite like swinging between skyscrapers, embracing being the hero, and spending time with Gwen. But being Spider-Man comes at a price: only Spider-Man can protect his fellow New Yorkers from the formidable villains that threaten the city. With the emergence of Electro, Peter must confront a foe far more powerful than he. And as his old friend, Harry Osborn, returns, Peter comes to realize that all of his enemies have one thing in common: OsCorp.

    The Amazing Spider-Man 2 is set for release on April 18th 2014 in the UK and on May 1st 2014 in North America, with a cast that also includes returning stars Emma Stone (Gwen Stacy), Sally Field (Aunt May), Chris Zylka (Flash Thompson), Campbell Scott (Richard Parker), Embeth Davidtz (Mary Parker), Martin Sheen (Ben Parker) and Denis Leary (George Stacy) alongside new additions include Jamie Foxx (Django Unchained) as Electro, Paul Giamatti (12 Years a Slave) as The Rhino, Chris Cooper (American Beauty) as Norman Osborn, Colm Feore (Thor) as Donald Menken, Marton Csokas (The Lord of the Rings) as Dr. Kafka, B.J. Novak (The Office) as Alistair Smythe and Felicity Jones (Like Crazy) and Sarah Gadon (Cosmopolis) in as yet unrevealed roles.

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    Anthony Stokes is excited by the casting on Fox's upcoming reboot of The Fantastic Four...

    After months of rumors and tons of backlash The Fantastic Four have been cast. This isn't intentional, but it seems that movies people are excited for I don't care about (Batman vs. Superman, The Amazing Spider-Man 2) and the that are getting a lot of the backlash (X-Men: Days of Future Past) I'm excited for. I'm genuinely excited for The Fantastic Four. Fox is making very good choices with this reboot, starting with getting the guy who did the great sci-fi superhero movie Chronicle, Josh Trank, as director. Trank being tapped to direct gave me enough good faith in this project, but there are people who aren't convinced. And now that the casting has just been announced, the general consensus appears to be that it sucks. Still, I love it, and here's why people should be excited for this movie...

    The original Fantastic Four and its sequel were horrible. Those people who claim that MCU movies are for kids are mistaken. Fantastic Four movies were for kids, with juvenile humor and characters. This new Fantastic Four seems to be doing a more edgy, darker approach without going down The Dark Knight route, at least from what I can tell. And people are complaining about them changing up the origin of the heroes, while I couldn't care less. I'm not the biggest Fantastic Four fan but they already tried to tell the traditional story. If you want a close adaption of the comic book then you have the original two movies. It always seems like people would rather see a close adaptation of fictional lore, rather than a good movie. This is trying something new, which for anything else but comic book adaptions is usually a good thing...

    Now to the cast. I've already addressed this several times but it bears repeating. Johnny Storm can be black. He doesn't have the iconic look of Batman or Superman. There's nothing about his description that screams "white male". Michael B. Jordan was not cast to try to appeal to black audiences - I'm sure it was a plus, but he was probably chosen due to his relationship with Josh Trank, and his on screen persona. This guy has a crazy amount of likeability and charisma and he was completely robbed for an Oscar nomination this year for Fruitvale Station. And this whole thing about his sister being white makes me want to impale my palm into my face. It's 2014. There's a such thing as interracial couples and adoption. As a matter of fact, making them adopted would add in interesting dynamic and layers to their relationship, as well as explaining why they're so different. From a storytelling perspective it adds depth to the characters, but fanboys don't like nuance they just want an adaptation that sticks close to the source material. But there are tens of dozens of different iterations of the Fantastic Four...

    Unlike the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles reboot, all these actors are tried and tested and have all performed above expectations. The way I feel about casting is that if you get a great actor with range things will work out just fine. Jamie Bell as The Thing is an unorthodox choice, and I like it. Kate Mara as Sue Storm is also a great choice. Hopefully she'll be blowing up soon and she's absolutely terrific on American Horror Story and House of Cards. Playing Sue Storm is not outside of her skill set. The casting that's almost as controversial as Michael B. Jordan is Miles Teller as Mister Fantastic. Miles Teller will make a horrible Reed Richards because he started out as a comedian. Comedians just don't make good actors. Look at Bill Murray. And Bradley Cooper. And Jim Carrey. And Queen Latifah. And Jonah Hill. And Chris Pratt. And Will Ferrell. And John Goodman. And Mo'Nique. And Robin Williams. All successful comedians who did terribly transitioning into dramatic roles. Stay in your line Teller.

    Basically, unless the trailer is completely awful, I'm going to see this movie. People complain that all Marvel movies are the same, but when they take steps to take risks, those same people freak out. Is it unfortunate that Fantastic Four is not back with Marvel Studios? No. They have enough on their plate right now and I'd rather them do riskier projects like Guardians of the Galaxy and Inhumans. I say wait until the trailer to cast full judgement, because from where I'm standing The Fantastic Four has potential to be a surprise hit. When the first trailer comes out and everybody gets excited, I can't wait to gloat about the fact that I saw it coming.

    Anthony Stokes is a blogger and independent filmmaker who also assists with the music blog DopesterMusic and co-hosts the podcast Delusional Losers.

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    Minor X-Men: Days of Future Past spoilers to follow....

    If you've been keeping an eye on the marketing for X-Men: Days of Future Past, chances are you'll have a few questions about the upcoming X-Men sequel. Why is James McAvoy's Professor X still walking around? How has Wolverine (Hugh Jackman) got his adamantium back? And what the hell was Bryan Singer smoking when he signed off on Quicksilver's (Evan Peters) costume? Meanwhile, you've probably also noticed that Beast has been spotted in both his human and mutated form, and now we have an answer as to why, with Nicholas Hoult revealing the details during an interview with Joblo (via CBM):

    "What's happened up to this point is between the time of the last movie and this movie my character has created a serum which basically controls his mutation so his appearance is normal as long as he doesn’t get worked up. Any animal instinct or urges, that kind of brings him out. So yeah, he changes into Beast a few times throughout the story and they've done some great action sequences with him this time, particularly in the mansion flying around on these chandeliers and stuff."

    So, what do you make of that, then? Are you a fan of Hulk-Beast, or is this deviating too far from Hank's comic book character? Let us know your thoughts below, or head on over to The Flickering Myth Forum...

    X-Men: Days of Future Past is set for release on May 23rd with a cast that also includes Michael Fassbender (Magneto), Jennifer Lawrence (Mystique), Patrick Stewart (Professor X), Ian McKellen (Magneto), Lucas Till (Havok), Halle Berry (Storm), Anna Paquin (Rogue), Ellen Page (Kitty Pryde) and Shawn Ashmore (Iceman) alongside franchise newcomers Evan Peters (American Horror Story) as Quicksilver, Booboo Stewart (The Twilight Saga: Eclipse) as Warpath, Fan Binbing (Iron Man 3) as Blink, Adan Canto (The Following) as Sunspot, Josh Helman (Mad Max: Fury Road) as William Stryker, Evan Jonigkeit (Girls) as Toad and Peter Dinklage (Game of Thrones) as Bolivar Trask.

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    Meet Hera, Star Wars Rebels' Twi'lek pilotThanks to Entertainment Weekly, we've got our final character introduction featurette for Disney and Lucasfilm's animated series Star Wars Rebels, which unveils Hera, a Twi'lek who serves as the pilot for the Ghost crew of rebels and will be voiced by Vanessa Marshall.

    "She is a very strong-minded character," revealed Star Wars Rebels executive producer Dave Filoni (Star Wars: The Clone Wars. "Kind of the heart of the group, keeps everyone together when they would otherwise fall apart."

    Head on over to EW for the featurette, and be sure to check out the previous character introductions for The Inquisitor, Chopper, Kanan, Ezra Bridger, Zeb and Sabine.

    Star Wars Rebels is set to get underway on Disney XD in the Fall with a voice cast that includes voice cast that includes David Oyelowo (Lee Daniels' The Butler), Freddie Prinze Jr. (Scooby-Doo), Taylor Gray (Bucket and Skinner's Epic Adventures), Tiya Sircar (Vampire Diaries) and Steve Blum (The Avengers: Earth's Mightiest Heroes). Watch the first promos for the series here.

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    With its release nearing, Legendary and Warner Bros. have released another poster for the latest version of The King of Monsters... and he is ridiculously huge. Check it out below...

    New Godzilla poster released

    "An epic rebirth to Toho's iconic Kaiju, this spectacular adventure pits the world's most famous monster against malevolent creatures who, bolstered by humanity's scientific arrogance, threaten our very existence."

    Godzilla is set for release on May 16th with a cast that includes Aaron Taylor-Johnson (Kick-Ass 2), Bryan Cranston (Breaking Bad), Elizabeth Olsen (Red Lights), David Strathairn (Lincoln), Juliette Binoche (Cosmopolis) and Ken Watanabe (Inception). Watch the trailer here.

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    Jackson Ball reviews the sixth episode of House of Cards season 2...

    House of Cards Season 2 poster
    The ongoing battle of wits between Vice President Francis ‘Frank’ Underwood (Kevin Spacey) and billionaire industry tycoon Raymond Tusk (Gerald McRaney) begins to heat up, as both parties desperately try to sway the President’s favour in their direction.

    Spoilers Ahead – You have been warned!

    It has become clear that the real driving force behind this season’s opening half is the Underwood/Tusk saga; it had naturally intriguing origins, a shaky patch in the middle, but with this episode has now really come into its own. Sure, there’s a lot of easy-to-forget jargon that has little impact in the grand scheme of things (Subsidies, Rare earth initiatives, FERC), but the underlying feud is what has really pushed the plot from A to B.

    I’ll admit, after Episode 6’s opening scenes, I was sceptical. Frank is asked to make the ceremonial first pitch at an upcoming baseball game which, following on from a disappointing Episode 5, had me bracing myself for an endless stream of obvious sporting metaphors. Fortunately though, it seems that the writers have spared me a second bout of force-fed analogies.

    The reason the baseball plot works so well is that it gives us a rare and highly unexpected glimpse into anything inside of frank that remotely resembles vulnerability. At this point we’ve seen just about every character in the show vulnerable in some way or another (ironically it’s usually Frank making capitalising of that vulnerability). Even his equally-cunning wife Claire (Robin Wright) has had her helpless moments, particularly centred on her continuing narrative involving her sexual abuse as a teen. However, we’ve hardly ever seen this side of Frank who, even when things aren’t going his way, always seems to have a firm grip on the situation. It’s the genius of the writers to finally evoke these feelings and doubts within him, over something as mundane as throwing an adequate baseball pitch.

    Of course, the real pay-off comes at the episodes climax, as Frank is finally about to make his pitch. The build-up is sublime; him walking out in front of the capacity crowd, the brilliantly delivered speech to the fans, it all adds up to create genuine tension for the most irrelevant of events.

    And then, darkness.

    An initial shock turns into a punch-the-air realisation that Tusk has finally got one over on Underwood. That briefest of vulnerability, that minute weakness that Frank finally bared is ruthlessly pounced on by his nemesis, as the billionaire uses his resources to cut all power to the stadium, just before the pitch. It’s a brilliant piece television, and marks a return to well-written, keep-you-guessing form for House of Cards.

     Jackson Ball - follow me on Twitter

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    Marvel Studios caused quite a stir yesterday with the release of the first trailer for Guardians of the Galaxy [watch it here], and while it provided us with our first glimpse of the cosmic superheroes, one thing that was missing was dialogue from the sure-to-become-a-fan-favourite Rocket Raccoon, who's set to be voiced by Bradley Cooper. Well, Marvel has now rectified that with a new featurette introducing us to the furry little guy and letting us hear his voice for the first time; check it out...

    "From Marvel, the studio that brought you the global blockbuster franchises of Iron Man, Thor, Captain America and The Avengers, comes a new team — the Guardians of the Galaxy. An action-packed, epic space adventure, Marvel’s “Guardians of the Galaxy” expands the Marvel Cinematic Universe into the cosmos, where brash adventurer Peter Quill finds himself the object of an unrelenting bounty hunt after stealing a mysterious orb coveted by Ronan, a powerful villain with ambitions that threaten the entire universe. To evade the ever-persistent Ronan, Quill is forced into an uneasy truce with a quartet of disparate misfits — Rocket, a gun-toting raccoon, Groot, a tree-like humanoid, the deadly and enigmatic Gamora and the revenge-driven Drax the Destroyer. But when Peter discovers the true power of the orb and the menace it poses to the cosmos, he must do his best to rally his ragtag rivals for a last, desperate stand — with the galaxy’s fate in the balance."

    Update - Marvel has now released another four featurettes introducing us to the rest of the Guardians - Peter Quill / Star- Lord (Chris Pratt), Gamora (Zoe Saldana), Drax (Dave Bautista) and Groot (Vin Diesel)...

    Guardians of the Galaxy is set for release on August 1st, with James Gunn (Super) directing a cast that also includes Chris Pratt (Parks and Recreation) as Star-Lord, ZVin Diesel (Fast & Furious 6) as Groot, Dave Bautista (Riddick) as Drax the Destroyer, Benicio Del Toro (Sin City) as The Collector, Lee Pace (The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug) as Ronan the Accuser, Karen Gillan (Doctor Who) as Nebula, Djimon Hounsou (Blood Diamond) as Korath, John C. Reilly (Step Brothers) as Rhomman Dey and Glenn Close (Damages) as Nova Prime Rael.  

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    We've literally just brought you five character featurettes introducing the Guardians of the Galaxy (including the first dialogue from Rocket Raccoon), and now Marvel Studios has dropped the first poster for August's cosmic superhero adventure, which you can check out right here...

    Marvel's Guardians of the Galaxy poster

    If you missed yesterday's trailer for Guardians of the Galaxy (or you just want to watch it again), you can do so here, and be sure to check out Luke Owen's thoughts here, as well as those of our writing team in the latest Flickering Myth Reaction.

    "From Marvel, the studio that brought you the global blockbuster franchises of Iron Man, Thor, Captain America and The Avengers, comes a new team — the Guardians of the Galaxy. An action-packed, epic space adventure, Marvel’s “Guardians of the Galaxy” expands the Marvel Cinematic Universe into the cosmos, where brash adventurer Peter Quill finds himself the object of an unrelenting bounty hunt after stealing a mysterious orb coveted by Ronan, a powerful villain with ambitions that threaten the entire universe. To evade the ever-persistent Ronan, Quill is forced into an uneasy truce with a quartet of disparate misfits — Rocket, a gun-toting raccoon, Groot, a tree-like humanoid, the deadly and enigmatic Gamora and the revenge-driven Drax the Destroyer. But when Peter discovers the true power of the orb and the menace it poses to the cosmos, he must do his best to rally his ragtag rivals for a last, desperate stand — with the galaxy’s fate in the balance."

    Guardians of the Galaxy is set for release on August 1st, with James Gunn (Super) directing a cast that includesChris Pratt (Parks and Recreation) as Star-Lord, Zoe Saldana (Star Trek Into Darkness) as Gamora, Dave Bautista (Riddick) as Drax the Destroyer, Bradley Cooper (American Hustle) as Rocket Raccoon, Vin Diesel (Fast & Furious 6) as Groot, Benicio Del Toro (Sin City) as The Collector, Lee Pace (The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey) as Ronan the Accuser, Karen Gillan (Doctor Who) as Nebula, Djimon Hounsou (Blood Diamond) as Korath, John C. Reilly (Step Brothers) as Rhomman Dey, and Glenn Close (Damages) as Nova Prime Rael.

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    The Expendables 3 director Patrick Hughes to remake The Raid
    With the release of the eagerly anticipated sequel The Raid 2: Berandal just around the corner, Screen Gems and XYZ have decided to cash in on the success of Welsh filmmaker Gareth Evans' hard-hitting Indonesian action hit with a Hollywood remake.

    According to The Wrap, Patrick Hughes - director of the excellent Aussie western Red Hill and the upcoming action sequel The Expendables 3 - has signed to helm the remake of The Raid, with Brad Inglesby (Out of the Furnace) scripting and Gareth Evans remaining involved as producer.

    It's said that the remake will follow a similar plotline as the original (a S.W.A.T. team storms a heavily fortified tower block, while a young rookie attempts to rescue his drug-dealing brother), "though it may be difficult for Hollywood stars to perform the brutal hand-to-hand fight scenes and other stunts with the same intensity as the original film’s martial arts experts."

    Before he tackles The Raid, Hughes will test his action chops with The Expendables 3, which is set for release on August 15th with a cast that includes Sylvester Stallone, Arnold Schwarzenegger, Jason Statham, Dolph Lundgren, Randy Couture, Terry Crews, Jet Li, Harrison Ford, Wesley Snipes, Mel Gibson, Antonio Banderas, Kellan Lutz, Glen Powell, Ronda Rousey, Kelsey Grammer, Robert Davi, and Victor Ortiz.

    How do you feel about The Raid getting the remake treatment? Let us know in the comments below or head on over to The Flickering Myth Forum...

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    Gary Collinson tries out Morphsuits' Amazing Spider-Man costume...

    I'm Spider-Man... Okay, so maybe an aging Spider-Man carrying a few extra pounds is a more apt description, but having spent the best part of the last day dressed as Marvel's friendly neighbourhood web-slinger, I'm about ready to head out onto the streets to take out a gang of punks while cracking wise. All I'm missing is super powers. And web-shooters. Fortunately, thanks to the wonders of augmented reality, I can pretend I've got both. In the comfort of my living room, obviously.

    So, what is it that's got me feeling like The Amazing Half-Arsed Spider-Man? That would be Morphsuits' new range of Marvel costumes (more specifically, Morpsuits' Spidey costume), which are described as "the most advanced superhero costumes [which] using wearable technology and augmented reality, actually appear to bring the superhero's powers to life." Is that hyperbole? Well, possibly, but there's no doubt that the Spider-Man suit looks fantastic, and the "super powers" - in this case, the ability to fire webbing through a downloadable video app - is good for a laugh. I'd upload a video, but you'd be laughing at me, not with me. If you want to see them in action, check out a promotional video here.

    I'm no expert on costumes by any stretch, and can count on one finger the number of times I've worn a skin-tight, full-body (and head) superhero suit, so it's hard for me to judge the quality of the costume itself, having no other reference point. It seems pretty durable, and I haven't burst any seams whilst pretending to be Spidey just yet, so I'm going to stick my neck out and say it's pretty good. It's also surprisingly cool, although I'd not like to walk around in it on a hot summer's day or a convention floor for extended periods (saying that, I imagine I'd be a hell of a lot cooler than the guy walking around in a giant Wookie costume). Oh, and being skin-tight, I should probably mention that it leaves absolutely nothing to the imagination. Now, where did I leave those socks..?

    Overall, I have to say I had a blast trying out Morphsuits' Spider-Man costume, and if you fancy yourself as the wall-crawler (or Deadpool, Wolverine, Captain America or Iron Man), then I'd heartily recommend giving these a go. The Spider-Man one is great, and I think I might even have to treat myself to the Deadpool one too.

    For more information on Marvel Morphsuits, visit the official site.

    Gary Collinson is a writer and lecturer from the North East of England. He is the editor-in-chief of and the author of Holy Franchise, Batman! Bringing the Caped Crusader to the Screen.

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    Anghus Houvouras on why getting upset over The Fantastic Four casting is wasted energy....

    The internet is a fun, if often irrational place. We (and by 'we' I mean internet movie sites) spend so much time speculating wildly about everything revolving around geek movies and comic book adaptations (myself included). Then when announcement are finally made, we spend even more time complaining about those choices. I can't even fathom the amount of energy dispensed writing angry diatribes about Ben Affleck being cast as Batman or Jesse Eisenberg as Lex Luthor.

    Imagine what we could do if we could harness that energy. If there was a way to convert geek rage into energy we could no doubt solve the Earth's energy crisis in a matter of minutes. There is nothing as plentiful and renewable as fanboy indignation. Trolling could become a major power source. Thermal units could be measured in 'Afflecks'. Every time a geek movie announces the casting, fuel hits fire.

    Yesterday we learned that 20th Century Fox was making offers to the cast of their new Fantastic Four movie. Miles Teller, Jamie Bell, Kate Mara (meow), and Michael Jordan. Immediately the internet cried out making sure everyone knew how displeased they were with the casting. I was a little upset too, mainly over the casting of Michael Jordan as the Human Torch. And I think everyone knows why: Was he really that good in Space Jam? I mean, the guy is pushing 60 and hasn't done a movie in decades. Sure, he's physically fit and still a recognizable icon, but is a retired basketball player and Hanes spokesman really the right choice for The Fantastic Four?

    Wait. It's not THAT Michael Jordan? Then I suppose I have no gripes about the choices for the new Fantastic Four.

    There's part of me that understands the disappointment in casting choices for your favorite superheroes. I myself have written columns about why I'd like to see Karl Urban play Batman or Christoph Waltz play Lex Luthor. There's been some fun (albeit heated) discussions around what actor feels 'right' for the role. This makes sense when you're talking about Superman or Batman. Characters that have been well treated cinematically and have been portrayed with varying degrees of quality. When it comes to characters like Superman, Batman, or Lex Luthor we have had admirable cinematic portrayals whereas the Fantastic Four has not.

    I can't fathom why anyone is remotely concerned about the Fantastic Four casting choices. They can't possibly be worse than the Roger Corman produced snicker-fest or Tim Story's two putrid installments. Seriously guys, could the bar be any lower? There is nowhere to go but up. Even if the film is painfully average, it will still be light years ahead of what we've gotten before. The film could be a total disaster and it would probably still be more watchable than Rise of the Silver Surfer.

    I think a lot of the restlessness about the casting comes from the youth-ification of the cast. It's the same kind of knee-jerk reaction over the Eisenberg casting. "He's too young!" they say. "He doesn't fit the image of the character I have from reading comics!" It's that fanboy entitlement iIve discussed at great length. People have an idea of what the character should be. When someone is cast outside that fanboy comfort zone, the bile begins to churn and a million tweets are produced.

    All of it seems so pointless when it comes to the Fantastic Four. We've yet to have a good adaptation of these classic characters. 20th Century Fox has proven their inability or interest in adapting these characters faithfully. Your confidence has been appropriately beaten into submission after handing the franchise to Tim Story. I mean, they handed the reigns over to the guy who did Barbershop. That is a level of institutional ineptitude that few studios ever achieve.

    I find it difficult to muster any emotion into the casting announcement. It's not like we're replacing Robert Downey Jr. with Kellan Lutz. Was Jessica Alba so iconic in the role of the Invisible Woman that Kate Mara feels like a downgrade? Do you have so many fond memories of Ioan Gruffudd's awkward take on Reed Richards that Miles Teller feels like an insult? Your only two options are 'go with it' or 'rage'. Based on what history has taught me, I have absolutely zero faith that Fox is going to deliver a great Fantastic Four movie. But it can't be possibly be worse than what came before.

    That my friends is the only sliver of hope we have.

    Anghus Houvouras is a North Carolina based writer and filmmaker. His latest work, the novel My Career Suicide Note, is available from Amazon.

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    Four directors in contention for Marvel's Doctor Strange
    While this years Guardians of the Galaxy has been getting all the attention this week [see the trailer, character featurettes and first poster], it seems that Marvel Studios still has one eye on Phase Three, wioth The Hollywood Reporter revealing that four directors are under consideration to bring the Sorcerer Supreme to the screen in Doctor Strange.

    According to the site, the studio has met with Mark Andrews (Brave), Nikolaj Arcel (A Royal Affair), Dean Israelite (Welcome to Yesterday) and Jonathan Levine (Warm Bodies). Meanwhile, screenwriters Jon Aibel and Glenn Berger (Kung Fu Panda) are "in the mix" to script the film, although Marvel is apparently keen on getting a writer-director duo, or a filmmaker who can tackle both.

    It's expected that Doctor Strange will feature as part of Marvel's Phase Three line-up, alongside Ant-Man, Thor 3, Captain America 3 and The Avengers 3.

    Update: According to Bleeding Cool, one of the reasons that Nikolaj Arcel is under consideration is because A Royal Affair star Mads Mikkelsen "apparently is, or has been, somewhere in the mix for the film's early casting discussions." Of course, this should be taken as a rumour until we hear something official, but it wouldn't be the first time Marvel were after Mikkelsen, with the Hannibal star reportedly passing on the role of Malekith in Thor: The Dark World.

    What do you make of the shortlist of directors for Doctor Strange and who would you like to see taking on the job? Let us know in the comments below or head on over to The Flickering Myth Forum...

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    It was revealed back in October that Adam McKay had ambitions of releasing an alternate cut of last year's comedy sequel Anchorman 2: The Legend Continues, and now its been confirmed that Ron Burgundy and company are heading back to the big screen for Anchorman 2: The Legend Continues Continued, complete with 763* new jokes (*give or take).

    "When my editor told me we had a whole different version of the movie that was more than two hours long with nearly 800 new jokes, I was shocked. But when Paramount said they were actually going to put it in theatres, I did a 1950’s spit take. If you're a hardcore Anchorman fan, go see this. If you're not, stay very far away," said writer / director Adam McKay.  

    The new cut is heading into UK cinemas for one week only from next Friday (February 28th), with a cast that includes Will Ferrell, Christina Applegate, Steve Carrell, Paul Rudd, David Koechner, Fred Willard, Chris Parnell, Vince Vaughn, Harrison Ford, Kristen Wiig, Dylan Baker, Greg Kinnear, James Marsden and Meagan Good.

    Check out the trailer below, and be sure to head on over to our YouTube channel for exclusive interviews with Adam McKay and stars Christina Applegate, James Marsden and Meagan Good...

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