Wednesday, June 4, 2014

TRAILER: Hercules, Transformers & News

UPDATE: It has just been confirmed today that Penny Dreadful has been renewed for a second, even longer season. Instead of just 8 episodes, Showtime has ordered 10 episodes to air during 2015.
So some friends went out of town for the week and it just so happens they have Showtime On Demand and guess who got caught up on all the episodes of Penny Dreadful? I won't be able to see all the episodes, which concludes at the end of June, however, I will post on the episodes I have seen; Showtime wrote me and said that after the episodes all air, they will be available for download, so we will finish up the season then. It does appear that the film makers want us to start thinking of Ethan Chandler (Josh Hartnett) as a werewolf; that doesn't mean that is what his secret is, but I am confident that is how film makers are planting the evidence. Permit me to make a definite, yet subtle demarcation in the homosexuality debate.
What exactly sparked the rumors to catch fire across the internet that this character is a werewolf? In Episode 3, Resurrection, Sir Malcolm's group has gone to the London Zoo in search of Mina and they encounter a pack of wolves who are not in cages (it's unclear if, as some as suggested, the wolves are vampires in dog form, or are werewolves in a pack). Ethan holds out his hand and one wolf puts Ethan's hand in his mouth, then the pack leaves. Seeing Ethan at the site of the murder of the mother and daughter which opened the series, could have been a coincidence, like Ethan and Brona meeting Frankenstein and Proteus on the street, or Vanessa at the theater; however, we glimpse an important flashback in Ethan's mind of a prostitute sitting on a bench in the London fog, taking a green apple from a newspaper, and then she's mysteriously attacked and her arm is severed from the body. Ethan was nowhere in that scene to be capable of having that flashback, unless he was in that scene and we just didn't see him because he was the attacker. He wakes up on the shoreline the next morning and goes to have a drink. Ethan takes Brona to the theater and we see a werewolf on the stage to insure we are thinking about werewolves and then, Dorian Grey takes Ethan to a dog-killing-rats spectacle and Ethan becomes sick. The film makers cut a bar brawl with clips of the dog killing rats, so, in the audience's mind, we correlate Ethan and the dog (there is also the way Brona pronounces Ethan's name outside of the theater as "eat-tin," like "eating" rather than Ethan; yes, she does have a thick accent, but Ethan points it out, not to Brona, but to the audience, so we won't think it's just her accent, we will know she actually calls him "eating," or, even, as in "Eton," because she senses that he is of a higher class than she is). Another curious event involving Ethan is the blood transfusion and Victor's request for Ethan to role up his sleeve and Ethan's denial of such a simple request. He's been sleeping with Brona, so anything there to see on Ethan's arm, she has seen but it hasn't been mentioned. It was probably the idea of the stress of the needle, and possibly him turning into his "other self," which caused him to so resolutely refuse to participate in the transfusion, rather than a tattoo or branding on his arm.
I was very upset this weekend with the lesbian overtones of Maleficent, but I am not with Penny Dreadful or SALEM; why? In Maleficent, like the TV show Modern Family, homosexuality is being promoted as "normal" or desirable because of the characters and the audience's sympathy for them; in Penny Dreadful and SALEM, the characters being shown in acts of homosexuality are evil and we therefore correlate the sexuality with witches or demons, vampires or werewolves. Both TV series mention "sins," a word we rarely hear nowadays, and its clear to me that it wants us to know exactly what those sins are and why they lead to damnation.
I think that Brona will become Victor's choice for Caliban's "bride." Either she is a very shallow, unnecessary character for the series, or she is very complex and one more deep realm to be explored. For example, if she were to become Caliban's bride, because she is all ready dying, we can not over look that she is Irish and poor, that she has been "screwed over" many times and that Caliban sees himself as the "modern man" representative of the Industrial Age, all matters playing heavily into the history of Ireland. If this happens, Brona's innocent meeting of Proteus offering her chestnuts, might be a wishful thing of the past if she has to marry the more brutal Caliban--like the man she had been engaged to but left--rather than Proteus who was kind and gentle. Even though she is dying, Brona is listed with the "main cast" of the show, rather than the supporting cast, so we will be seeing much more of her, the question is, in what role?
Likewise, I am caught up on all the episodes of SALEM (I have to tell you, those last two were pretty intense!). SALEM has been renewed for a second season, so we will go through that. While I am perfectly confident that the show seeks to expose liberalism for the satanism that it truly is because of all the vices it embraces, we are going to focus more on the literary devices because we can use those in all our encounters with art and employing them makes for a much richer artistic experience.
Now, onto the trailers,...
It has also just been announced that Cody Walker will be a permanent fixture in future Fast and Furious films. Cody is stepping in for his late brother, Paul Walker, who died before the filming was finished for F & F 7 (a detail that has caused the film to run $50 million over budget). Cody is both standing in for additional scenes of Paul that needed to be filmed, as well as coming on board as his own character, the younger brother of Brian, who will join in the adventures.
I hate to admit this, but I had completely forgotten all about Dwayne Johnson's Hercules coming out (July 25); the second trailer for the action-adventure film has been released today, as well as a
Without a doubt whatsoever, we can say that, as usual, Hercules, a middle-aged man, symbolizes the economy; his desire to just be a good husband and father is noble, however, as we saw in The Cold Light Of Day with Will (Henry Cavill) that's not enough, more is expected out of America and when there is a void left by America's absence, it will be filled by evil. Something I would like to point out--which we have been doing, but not particularly from this angle--is that art generally reflects the politics of the time during which it is created.
This film looks absolutely horrible. Jupiter Ascending, directed by the males once known as the Wachowski Brothers, who brought us The Matrix, they are now the Wachowski siblings because one of them has had a sex change. Yes, there is no way I am looking forward to this film at all, but I have been given a break because--even though the film was slated to open in seven weeks--they have moved that to February 2015 due to extensive special effects that were not going to be ready in time for this summer. I think it hasn't received any real activity and they are hoping they can generate more interest in it by then. Anyway, that's one bad film I don't have to watch this year.
We know, because I am constantly beating this drum, that films have been holding debates about socialism and capitalism, however, since 2008, we have also been seeing a far greater number of films discussing the end of the world (it can be argued that someone is always threatening to destroy the world, however, films--and TV shows--have been making a far more dire, "age of extinction" and the "curse to end mankind" kind of end-of-the-world scenario than previously seen). Here is the international trailer which has some additional footage:
I know this might be difficult to watch, but--speaking of "the age of extinction"--here is the Russian trailer for Transformers IV, which I am very much looking forward to! The scene with Stanley Tucci demonstrates that you don't always need words to understand what's going on:
Also, if you are a Sleepy Hollow fan, the new series will premiere September 22! I am forcing myself to get the Maleficent post up before I start on Penny Dreadful, so that should be up soon because I want to be done with it, but also because there are some important things going on that I know we will, regrettably, be seeing again. Eat Your Art Out, The Fine Art Diner