Monthly Archives: August 2014

Analyzing the post credit scenes from MCU Phase 2


 

With Marvel Cinematic Universe’s phase 2 finally coming to an end with Guardians of the Galaxy and Age of Ultron on the way I decided to take a look back on the mid and post credit scenes all the movies of MCU phase 2 and how they are different than the ones in phase 1.

How are phase 2 mid and post credit sequences different from the ones in Phase 1. During phase 1, Marvel was a relatively unknown franchise, taking risk with some relatively unknown characters and was building a momentum for Avengers at the same time. Each of the post credit scenes in the phase 1 was a tease for the next movie. Until Iron Man 2 most of the fans didn’t even know about the cohesive cinematic universe that Marvel was planning to build so the post credit sequences had two roles 1 to make the audience aware about their next movie, and 2 To set foundation for their first Avengers movie. And this worked well.

From what I have observed, the after credits only come into play when Marvel is going to introduce a new character or a new movie THAT IS NOT A SEQUEL is on the way. Let me explain how.

Before reading the post you need to assume that from Phase 2 the movies are divided in two directions. The movies that take place on Earth are the only ones leading to Avengers 2 while the cosmic movies are leading directly to the final act in 3rd Avengers movie and Phase 3.

Iron Man 3 – The end credits reveal that the whole movie was running in flashback as Tony was narrating his story to his science buddy Dr. Bruce Banner, sitting in the building that once used to be Stark towers and now is The Avengers Mansion.

Implications – Tony was planning to build Avengers mansion by the time Avengers ended, now we have a fully functional building made for the members of team and Dr. Bruce Banner is already living in it. This can either mean that Dr. Banner finally found home he was looking for or may be Tony is secretly keeping a watch on him (we know that Hulkbuster is going to show up in Age of Ultron.) This scene serves as an epilogue for Avengers as well as a prologue giving a mild tease for next Avengers movie.

Thor: The Dark World – The mid credit scene of Thor’s sequel introduced us to The Collector leading directly to Guardians of the Galaxy movie. The end credit sequence of Thor: TDW shows that Thor has returned to Earth after seeking permission from Loki/Odin. This post credit sequence was a direct tease for Avengers 2 and declaring that Thor now has truly become the protector of Midgard.

Captain-America-2-spoiler-image

Captain America: The Winter Soldier – The mid credit scene introduced us to the new members of Avengers: Age of Ultron, Quicksilver and Scarlet Witch. Avengers is also going to serve as an origin story for these two characters along with a possible hint on the Inhumans movie that will be a part of MCU’s phase 3 slot. The end credit sequence however was probably setting route for Bucky’s path and Captain America 3.

Guardians of the Galaxy – This was one of the most confusing after credit sequence that many fans thought was underwhelming. Well, let’s look upon it in this way. This sequence firstly teases Avengers 3 that will probably feature The Collector who is also on a quest for infinity gems along with it what I can guess is that the Howard the Duck cameo was not about Howard the Duck but instead what was behind him. An empty cocoon inside which Adam Warlock was charging himself and is now gone. The same cocoon showed up in Thor: TDW as well. These end credits are setting stones for Guardians of the Galaxy 3 and then to Avengers 3.

warlock-cocoon

Whatever be the meaning of these scenes for one thing I am sure is that now 4 of the key members of Avengers have united on Earth under one roof. Captain America has left SHIELD and shifted to Avengers mansion, Thor will probably find home at the same place where Bruce Banner is already residing. At the same time Guardians are now on a new quest that will probably lead them to Thanos by the time phase 3 concludes.

Advertisements

Remembering Pran Kumar Sharma.


Pran Kumar Sharma, the creator of the iconic characters like Chacha Chaudhary, Billoo and Pinky passed away last Wednesday in Delhi at age of 75. The news of his demise was hit hard among the fans who grew up reading tales of Chacha Chaudhary, whose brain works faster than a computer, troublesome Billoo and cute Pinky. Large number of fans mourned the loss of the beloved artist and the comic book creator that was followed by a series of fond memories about reading and buying diamond comics on a train journey or during summer holidays.

We at Comicbookrants decided to pay him a tribute on his birthday yesterday on 15 Aug but we got loaded we list of tributes and messages from all around the internet that it took us a day finally come up with the article.

Here is a chat session with the legendary artist that will bring your memories and tears in the eyes at the same time.

The internet was abuzz with news of demise of the legend as well. From Facebook to Twitter everyone mourned his death.

Major Indian comic book companies and fans wrote about the loss Indian comics industry just went through.

 

Aditya

rashi aniruddho deepak varun

Artists paying tribute with their art works dedicated to Pran Sir.

10435840_10152360607776553_2184676996556140620_nAmul was the first one in the long list of art tributes to the legend

Kshiraj TelangBy Kshiraj Telang

ManasBy Manas

Raghupathi SringeriBy Raghupathi Sringeri

Rahul KatyayanRahul Katyayan

sumit kumar adapted from this Jim Henson tributeSumit Kumar’s adaptation from Jim Henson’s tribute to Walt Disney

sumit kumarChacha Chaudhary and Tintin mashup by Sumit Kumar

More tributes can be followed in this album on Chitrakatha’s page

Along with facebook users and pages twitterverse was a shocked by this news as well.

The Prime Minister remembers Pran Sir

Cartoonist Manjul’s tribute for the legend

Pran sir left behind a long list of admirers and fans who grew up reading his characters. He is always going to live in their memories and the legacy he left behind.

Movie review: Guardians of the Galaxy


Marvel's Guardians Of The Galaxy...Milano..Ph: Film Frame..?Marvel 2014

Before you start reading this review and the way I have gloriously described this movie and start calling me a Marvel fanboy (that I am) let me tell you this. I was really not happy when Marvel announced Guardians of the Galaxy movie was on its way. I among many of the fans wanted to see a Black Panther or a Hulk movie in the first place that was taken by Guardians of the Galaxy.

I mean who cares about bunch of misfits formed together to protect the universe, their stories looked good in comic books and they were needed to Avengers 3 to take place but I wondered why Marvel was putting money on this totally unknown franchise so soon when they have so many better options.

And then James Gunn was announced as the director and the skeptic in me kinda became hopeful.

Long story short I waited for one and a half year for this movie to come out that was obviously being ruined by pathetic run of Guardians of the Galaxy comics series that is left in the cruel hands of Brain M. Bendis and totally destroyed the series (I’ll continue this rant somewhere else in other space time). Finally the day came when I was going to watch Guardians of the Galaxy on 8th August 2014.

After the first trailer and the entire ooga chaka sequence I didn’t watch a single trailer related to this movie so I had no idea what was going to show up, not even a glimpse. I had to pay 300 bucks for this movie in my city because cinepolis is run by bunch of money hungry mongrels (another rant another time.)

What followed after were the best 120 minutes of my life.

Groot-and-Rocket-Racoon-blowing-shit-up

Soon after Peter Quill’s introduction and the music that followed after I knew that the movie is going to own. The way it introduced each character, gave them their space and character was simple incredible. The soundtrack, the references and the jokes felt like distinct characters and part of the film instead of being forced in the movie for no reason.

Words fail me when I start to describe how amazing the Marvel’s first cosmic outing was. The movie passed beyond the expectations and the benchmarks both Iron Man 3 and Captain America: The Winter Soldier created. I feel kinda bad for Joss Whedon that he is constantly facing new challenges on a regular basis to make Avengers: Age of Ultron set a new benchmark when it comes out.

The movie is about a group of misfits caught in between of an interplanetary battle and are forced to take desperate measures to take a side and save the universe from brink of destruction.

They call themselves the Guardians of the Galaxy – What a bunch of A-holes.

Guardians of the Galaxy is an origin story of the team, they are not called by their team name until by the end of the movie. This is the story of how a bunch of A-holes come together and ultimately form a team and learn to fight besides each other.

I’ll start talking about this movie with Peter Quill played by Chris Pratt. When his casting was announced I only knew him from Parks and Recreation and the amount of cheeseburger he stored inside him made me hard to believe that this guy is going to be Star Lord. In 6 months he bulked up for the movie from family pack to 6 packs. The way he walked and talked in the film reminded so much of Harrison Ford from Indiana Jones or Star Wars that right now it seems he’ll be the perfect person for the role if they decide to reboot Indiana Jones. He is someone who now seems on the levels of Robert Downey Jr. on the level of awesomeness.

Rocket guadians of the galaxy

The best part of the movie were two CGI characters Rocket and Groot voiced by Bradley Cooper and Vin Diesel. Rocket owned the movie, as said earlier he is the heart of the film, he is rude has a terrible past and loves guns. On the other hand Groot is a cute monster, who is as dangerous as he can be. I just loved the role they played in the movie. Thanks to censor board I missed a foul mouthed raccoon abuse on screen so a huge middle finger to them.

Drax guardiansDrax was a surprise package, I never knew that Batista can act so well. His role kind of grew up on me as the movie proceeded. Driven by revenge he almost drives the team on the brink of death only to revive himself later. I personally feel that Drax was underused and was not upto his full potential but I have hopes high for the sequel and Avengers 3 where we may see him pulling the heart out of Thanos’ chest with his bare hands.

Gamora Guardians of the Galaxy

Zoë Saldana plays Gamora, she comes out as another of the strong female characters in the marvel movies and has her own role and backstory developed in the film. She had the best hand to hand fight scenes in the film especially with Star Lord in the introduction of the film and later with Nebulla.

Now talking about the villains,

We finally get to meet the big bad playing behind the scenes till now come out of shadows. Yes I am talking about Thanos the Mad Titan himself. He looked simply Menacing played by Josh Brolin. For a 5 minute scene he turned out to be one of the most amazing parts of the movie because this time there was more of him rather than just a smile. BTW the way events of this film proceeded I strongly feel that Loki on Asgard throne is what Thanos planned as his actual mission to retrieve the Infinity gauntlet from Odin’s vault (discussion left for some time later :P).

tumblr_n9n511Pf8p1qd4w1no3_250

guardians-of-the-galaxy-villains

I liked how Ronan and Nebula’s role were developed in the film, Karen Gillian went from pretty Amy to menacing daughter of Mad Titan assisting Ronan with his mission. Lee Pace has changed his race from Elf to Kree and kind of looked scary. Unlike many other Marvel villains he looked like a villain but a well justified mission and came out as a threat not for the heroes but for the entire galaxy and the main major baddie himself, although I am disappointed that he had to die in the end of the film but the part where he had the holographic conversation with Thanos reminded me of Star Wars conversation between Darth Vader and the Emperor. It was amazing.

 

guardians_of_the_galaxy Thanos

One of the best part was checking out Collector’s vault that supposedly is filled with all kind of Easter eggs from Marvel universe. I saw a Chituari soldier, a Dark Elf, possibly a Karbonite horse like creature that looked like Beta Ray Bill along with Cosmo and Howard the Duck. I mean so much awesomeness in one movie that I cannot stop describing. The references, the cameos and everything that followed was simply incredible.

Also how can I forget Yondu, the original Guardian although looked nothing like his comic book counterpart and maybe he’ll evolve into a future Guardian but in this movie his role was so well written. I love Michael Rooker and though he initially wanted to voice Rocket that I feel would have been perfect for the role he did a beautiful job with Yondu. His comic timing and posing a fear factor in Quill’s life upto revealing that he was hired by Quill’s father to abduct him but he changed the deal and how can one forget the way he killed all the Skaaran soldiers with one arrow.

There is a lot to talk about this movie that I feel will take one more part if I keep going on like this. Coming to the direction James Gunn has done a tremendous job with the film. His vision simply plays off and makes the movie worth watching. The comedy and the seriousness simply blends with his style. He knows what he is doing and he proves it by placing all the Easter eggs, cameos and references throughout the movie.

The graphic sequences used to this film are better than any of the movies that I have seen this year, the 3d really supports the storyline and will look amazing on IMAX screen. The concept art for every characters and landscapes looks like the one from its comic book counterparts. The best use of the design really comes up with introduction of Knowhere and the Milano chase sequence.

awesome mix Guardians ofthe Galaxy

Talking about the soundtrack, I for one really felt old after watching this movie. Once these songs used to be the instant hit numbers that used to come on radio, today has evolved into classic pop from the 80s. 26 years later just like the time since Peter left Earth, the cassette is the reminder how awesome our childhood was. The MP3 players and the digital tracks can never define the identity the way this Sony Walkman and the cassette of awesome mix volume 1 and 2 have done. I have been continuously listening to Cherry Bomb and Jackson 5 since Friday on loop. The movie is reminded of good old days and the era that is gone by. Like metal is synonymous with Iron Man franchise, the classic pop is now synonymous with Guardians.

Anyways coming to the last part of this movie, I am overwhelmed the way Marvel and James Gunn presented this movie. I am one for sure that the this franchise will develop into Annihilation conquest saga as the finale, all I hope is that Marvel gets rights for Fantastic Four back from Fox and we will get to see Galactus and Silver Surfer in the future installments.

Now I’ll just sit around and wait for Avengers: Age of Ultron in 2015. For now here is a dancing Groot looking cute and all that.

9f78bf80-fee7-0131-075b-0eae5eefacd9

PS: No Raccoon or Tree creatures were harmed during making of this film.

Penny Dreadful: All The Facts You Need


Screen-Shot-2014-01-16-at-3_58_37-PM-726x248

The new psychosexual horror series Penny Dreadful is now premiered on Showtime for the wider public. While my previous write-up considered what we might expect from the show, here are some details we know to be true.

PRODUCTION

As far as key players go, John Logan (Gladiator, Hugo) stands above them all. As well as being series creator and showrunner, he has also penned every episode. Serving alongside him as executive producer are Sam Mendes (American Beauty) and Pippa Harris (Revolutionary Road).

penny-dreadful-eva-green-570x294

For the eight episodes that make up season one, four directors have been charged with bringing the series to life. According to IMDB, the first two episodes have been directed by Juan Antonio Bayona (The Orphanage), episodes 3 and 4 by Dearbhla Walsh (The Tudors), episodes 5 and 6 by Coky Giedroyc (The Hour), and the final two episodes by James Hawes (Mad Dogs).

In terms of casting, it appears to be a very varied assortment of film, television, and stage talent. Speaking to Collider earlier in the year, Logan described Josh Hartnett, Eva Green, Timothy Dalton, and Harry Treadaway as “the big four”, meaning supporting roles for the likes of Reeve Carney, Simon Russell Beale, Billie Piper, Helen McCrory, Danny Sapani, and Rory Kinnear.

pennydreadful

Despite the London setting, shooting actually took place at Ardmore Studios, Ireland, in addition to various other parts around Dublin. Visit the Penny Dreadful Youtube channel to watch some incredible making-of video diaries:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=C0jJ8YGfZ-M
Each episode runs at approximately 60 minutes, beginning on May 11th on Showtime for North America. However, being a US-UK co-production, I assume British Audiences should expect to see it shortly after when it airs on Sky Atlantic.

CONTENT

With regards to story and plot, not much is known, but over the last couple of weeks a few more interesting nuggets of information have begun to emerge.

We arrive in Victorian London, 1891, where characters from Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein, Oscar Wilde’s The Picture of Dorian Gray, and Bram Stoker’s Dracula all breathe life.

Amongst these famous faces are also a handful of original characters such as American sharpshooter Ethan Chandler (Hartnett), supernaturally gifted clairvoyant Vanessa Ives (Green), and African explorer Sir Malcolm Murray (Dalton).

According to USA Today, the story sees Sir Malcom employing the services of Vanessa and Ethan as he searches for his daughter who has been taken by evil forces. And, as Indiewire reports, as blood spills out onto the streets, the people of London fear that Jack the Ripper has returned.

Theme wise, Logan appears to intend to examine the concepts of alienation and humanity. Speaking to The Hollywood Reporter in January, he said that “I chose to set the show [in 1891] not because it would be cool visually but because the Victorian era reminds me of right now […] They were on the cusp of the modern world … grappling with the very elemental question of what it means to be human”.

Additionally, Showtime’s David Nevins also claimed the series to be both realistic and erotic, so it’s safe to say that between all the sex, swearing, and gore, this is not a television series to show your little ones!
Finally, having previewed as this year’s SXSW, first reactions to the first episode are in.

Indiewire writes “Based on the first episode, “Penny Dreadful” is an elegant, creepily crafted horror opus […] If “Penny Dreadful” follows in the footsteps of its first episode, it will be some shivery good fun for fans of Gothic noir, macabre period pieces and smart horror alike”

USA Today claims that the first episode “wastes no time getting bloody”.

Deadline says “Bayona’s cinematic leanings set a strong stylistic tone for the series which takes viewers into the gritty streets and tenements of Victorian England…”

And MacGuffin writes “The episode as a whole is satisfyingly dark, mysterious, bloody, and horrific”

And in this video you can see how audience members reacted to the screening: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vG3IT4olmRI
Overall, it seems to have impressed 🙂

So there you go, Penny Dreadful is coming, and from the looks of things, it’s definitely worth checking out.