October 2008

A Halloween message from Molly Hartley

The Haunting of Molly Hartley is a tale of spell binding suspense in which something evil lurks just beneath the lush surfaces of teenaged girl’s private school world - and it holds the rights to her very soul

Happy Halloween

Voting for change

With only days left until the Presidential election, street artist Shepard Fairey and director Melissa Balin have teamed up to try and create their own grass-roots movement in support og the Obama campaign by launching the Vote for Change Video Postcards. Truth be told, though, its less a grass-roots movement and more a series of sixty second celebrity endorsements, but some of them are pretty good and worth watching.

So heres John C. Reilly on being white

and there are many more on the Vote for Change website.

A musical interlude

Set in the 2056, Repo! The Genetic Opera tells the story of an epidemic of organ failures that devastates the planet, killing tens of millions. Out of the tragedy, a savior emerges: GeneCo, a biotech company that offers organ transplants… for a price.

Its a film that seemed destined to become a cult hit, with curiosity and fan interest running high pretty much from day one. Unfortunately, the film fell victim to a change of management at Lionsgate and – as is often the case – the new guy tries to make himself look good by under-marketing the previous incumbents projects.

In the case of Lionsgate, this has let to a pitiful opening for Clive Barkers Midnight Meat Train and JT Pettys The Burrowers is receiving practically no marketing at all. Similarly, Repo! Has received a whole lot of nothing in terms of marketing but – in this case – director Darren Lynn Bousman is not prepared to see his film sink without trace and has been doggedly mounting his own campaign which has so far seen him release the soundtrack and pound the festival circuit for all its worth.

And now Twitch has managed to score a full musical number that captures the unique aesthetic of this odd little film. Watch it, watch the trailer, demand the DVD.

Justice is coming to all of us. No matter what we do

While Im still far from convinced that Zack Snyder is going to be able to bring Alan Moores classic comic to the big screen successfully, I do have to admit that the first proper teaser poster to be released does set the tone just about perfectly.

You can see a larger version over at CHUD. In the meantime, I shall live in hope but expect to be disappointed.

The Atheist Bus Campaign

The Atheist Bus Campaign launched on Tuesday October 21 2008 with the hope of raising £5,500 to run 30 buses across London for four weeks with the slogan: Theres probably no God. Now stop worrying and enjoy your life.

Professor Richard Dawkins, bestselling author of The God Delusion, is officially supporting the Atheist Bus Campaign, and has generously agreed to match all donations up to a maximum of £5,500, giving us a total of £11,000 if we reach the full amount - enough for a much bigger campaign. The British Humanist Association have kindly agreed to administer all donations.

With your help, we can brighten peoples days on the way to work, help raise awareness of atheism in the UK, and hopefully encourage more people to come out as atheists. We can also counter the religious adverts which are currently running on London buses, and help people think for themselves.

As Richard Dawkins says: This campaign to put alternative slogans on London buses will make people think - and thinking is anathema to religion.

Its already wildly exceeded its target but donations are still open. You can find out more about the idea of a reassuring God-free advert being used to counter religious advertising by clicking here.

Judge Death takes over at the Home Office

The latest wheeze in the Labour governments War Against Sanity is to decide that anyone carrying a pre-pay mobile phone must be a terrorist - or as good as - so theyre building another database of mobile phone owners. Thats all owners of mobile phones, regardless of whether they have regular contract or a pre-pay phone.

Everyone who buys a mobile telephone will be forced to register their identity on a national database under government plans to extend massively the powers of state surveillance.

Phone buyers would have to present a passport or other official form of identification at the point of purchase. Privacy campaigners fear it marks the latest government move to create a surveillance society.

It cant be long now until they realise that all crimes are comitted by living people and overreact accordingly.

The problem with DRM

Walmart, Microsoft and Yahoo have all put their customers in this position. And if you buy media encumbered with this broken solution you will - sooner or later - find yourself with a library you cant access.

Today were going to show you eight silent ways to excite a geek

Waiting for a science fiction film from Ridley Scott is a bit like waiting for a bus. Nothing for 25 years and then two turn up at once.

As Ive already mentioned, Scott is planning to bring Aldous Huxleys Brave New World to the big screen. It now seems that Brave New World will be the film he makes after he’s brought Joe Haldemans The Forever War to cinemas.

I first pursued Forever War 25 years ago, and the book has only grown more timely and relevant since, Scott told Daily Variety. It’s a science-fiction epic, a bit of The Odyssey by way of Blade Runner, built upon a brilliant, disorienting premise.

The Forever War tells the story of William Mandella, who returns from from weeks or months of active duty in the interstellar Forever War to an Earth which, after centuries of change, is no longer his home.

Its Only a Movie

Wes Cravens 1972 film, The Last House on the Left has had a chequered history on the UK, to say the least, starting with an outright ban in 1974 when the film was first submitted for a BBFC rating. With the rise of home video in the 1980s, the film made it – briefly – to UK shores until the “video nasties” moral panic started to bite and the film was banned again by the 1984 Video Recordings Act.

The film had built a reputation for itself and, as the 1980s became the 1990s, critics had started to laud the film as an important piece of work. This led, in 2000, to the film being submitted to the BBFC for certification yet again and, once again, being refused.

In 2002, Blue Underground submitted the film and were told that they had to make 16 seconds worth of cuts in order to achieve an 18 certificate. The video distributor appealed and, as part of the appeal, called in Mark Kermode to make a case for the films historical importance. Famously, the Video Appeals Committee not only upheld the original cuts, but doubled them.

Finally, on 17th March 2008, the BBFC classified the film, uncut, for video release. And now, as Twitch reports, Metrodome Distribution have uncovered a further 5 minutes and 27 seconds of previously unseen footage which is included on the 3 Disc Ultimate Edition, released on Monday 20th October.

Crack open a bottle of Krug while you watch the original trailer.

PG Porn

If, like me, you have been following James Gunns MySpace Blog, you will be aware that he has been getting rather excited recently about the idea of making PG Porn. The first episode is out so, without further ado heres Nathan Fillion Nailing Your Wife.