From hobbits to mutants to mockingjays: 2014 movie preview

By Ashley Bergner
Box Office Buzz

The year 2015 is already getting a lot of buzz for a multitude of high-profile films — the next Avengers movie, Jurassic Park 4, Batman vs. Superman, the return of James Bond, and (finally!) a new Star Wars movie. However, there are a number of exciting films opening this year too. Here are some of the movies I’m most looking forward to in 2014:

Divergent (March 21)

DIVERGENTBased on a best-selling young adult dystopian sci-fi novel, “Divergent” takes place in a futuristic Chicago where society is divided into five “factions” that each represent a character trait (selflessness, honesty, etc.). Teenagers are required to take an aptitude test supposedly designed to show them which faction they are best suited for. The main character, Beatrice Prior, is born into the selfless faction but learns the results from her aptitude test are inconclusive. She is labeled as “Divergent” — having the traits of several factions — but is warned this label is dangerous, and she is instructed to never tell anyone about her results. Continue reading

Beyond ‘The Avengers': Marvel prepares for ‘Phase 2′ of superhero franchise

By Ashley Bergner
Box Office Buzz

Iron-Man-3-IMAX-posterBefore 2008, many people weren’t familiar with the Marvel comic book superhero Iron Man. DC Comics characters Superman and Batman had long been the two most famous superheroes, and no one was expecting a movie based on Tony Stark — a snarky narcissist in a metal suit — to be a mega-hit.

However, Robert Downey Jr.’s great performance not only rebooted the actor’s own career, it also helped launch an impressive theatrical run for a line-up of Marvel superheroes, culminating in last summer’s epic mash-up “The Avengers.” Earning more than $1.5 billion worldwide, “The Avengers” established Marvel’s dominance in the cinematic superhero universe, and now DC Comics is the one struggling to catch up.

Still, Marvel is hoping this is just the beginning. “The Avengers” completed the first stage of the film franchise, and now Marvel is preparing to launch what the company is calling “Phase 2,” which features new movies about Iron Man, Thor and Captain America; an Avengers sequel; and a science fiction film about an Avengers-style team called “Guardians of the Galaxy.” Personally, I’m very much looking forward to Marvel’s new line-up of films, though I do have a few possible concerns. Continue reading

ASSEMBLED AGAIN!

ASSEMBLED! 2: EARTH’S MIGHTIEST HEROES AND VILLAINS has now joined

Vol. 1 on Kindle, also for $2.99 at http://www.amazon.com/ASSEMBLED-Earths-Mightiest-Villains-ebook/dp/B0082PXQH4

This volume focuses on “The Big Three” of Iron Man, Cap, and Thor, along with top villains Ultron and Kang. Includes opinion, analysis, humor, and special features covering the history and relationships of these major characters.

Written by the Jarvis Heads of AvengersAssemble.net.
Edited by Van Allen Plexico.
Introduction by Marvel Comics Exec. Editor Tom Brevoort.
Profits go to the HERO Initiative charity, as chosen for us by George Perez.

Learn more about White Rocket Books and Assembled at http://www.whiterocketbooks.com

 

Review: ‘The Avengers’ is one epic ride

By Ashley Bergner, Box Office Buzz

After months of hype and media coverage, and years of build-up in previous Marvel superhero films, “The Avengers” is finally here. And it’s one heck of an epic ride. The film was absolutely worth the wait, and director Joss Whedon’s combination of non-stop action, humor and heart adds up to what is arguably one of the best superhero movies ever made.

The film features an impressive line-up of superheroes, including Iron Man, Captain America, Thor and Hulk. Although I enjoyed all the individual films featuring these characters leading up to “The Avengers,” the superheroes are even better together. Here, they are forced to team up to take on Loki, Thor’s vengeful brother, who has stolen the “Tesseract” (the glowing blue energy cube used by HYDRA Nazis in last summer’s “Captain America: The First Avenger”). Loki plans to unleash an army and take over the Earth, and also get revenge on his brother for denying him the throne of Asgard. Continue reading

“Captain America” Sequel Set For 2014

Captain America 2 is on it's wayBy: Steve Sunu, Source CBR

Walt Disney Studios has released a new image of Chris Evans as Captain America from “The Avengers” and announced a release date of April 4, 2014 for Marvel Studios’ sequel to “Captain America: The First Avenger.” The sequel will pick up where “The Avengers” leaves off, continuing Steve Rogers’ partnership with Nick Fury and S.H.I.E.L.D. as the star-spangled Avenger struggles to acclimate to his role as a hero in the modern era. Continue reading

Captain America co-creator and comics legend Joe Simon dead at 98

Joe Simon passes at the age of 98By Matthew Jackson, Source: Blastr.com

Legendary comics writer, artist, editor and publisher Joe Simon, whose work included the co-creation of Captain America and other Golden Age icons, passed away Thursday at the age of 98.

A New York native who worked as an editorial cartoonist and art director from an early age, Simon landed in the comics industry in the 1930s and quickly became a prominent figure. It wasn’t long before he met another young comics upstart, Jack Kirby, and began one of the most prolific and influential collaborations in comics history. Continue reading

MARVEL COMICS LAUNCHES WINTER SOLDIER


Marvel Comics has announced an ongoing Winter Soldier series by Ed Brubaker and Butch Guice to launch in February with covers by Lee Bermejo.

“I knew 90 percent of the angry ‘You killed Bucky’ fans were fans who were upset that I brought him back in the first place who I had won over,” Brubaker said. “Hopefully I will be able to win them back again.”

The series will touch on Bucky’s history from the Cold War and will feature Black Widow, and, to a lesser degree, Nick Fury.

Earth Station One Episode 70: Kicking Hydra’s butt across Europe, Here comes Captain America

Earth Station One Episode 70, It's time for Captain AmericaHowdy and welcome to an extra large episode of the Earth Station One Podcast. It’s time to travel back to World War II and help fight the evil forces of Hydra, and also for truth, justice and all thing American, when we review the new movie Captain America, the first Avenger, but wait that’s not all we also take a peek at the 3rd episode of Torchwood: Miracle Day. And after that will be chatting with Mike about his adventures at San Diego Comic Con, and the folks he met out there, and Bobby will talk about Fandom Fest in Louisville, KY

Join us for yet another episode of The Earth Station One Podcast we like to call: – Kicking Hydra’s butt across Europe, Here comes Captain America Continue reading

Building a Better Sequel

Is Hollywood out of ideas? Lets examine the evidence. In the past few years, sequels, prequels, and remakes have dominated the box office. We’ve seen the proliferation of strangely specific genre films filled with superheroes, vampires and zombies. They are adapting adaptations of adaptations. It seems that any recognizable properties, from theme park rides to board games, are preferable to new ideas.

I know I’m not the first to person to complain about this. I am also unoriginal. The question we should be asking is: are these sequels any good? Good sequels propel the franchise further while bad sequels end them. It is very Darwinian. In fact, it seems that the sequel as a concept is beginning to evolve.


Continue reading

9 new superhero toys that may be better than the movies

Look at all these toys!!!

Come this May, superheroes are going to be stepping all over each other on the big screen as Thor, Green Lantern, Captain America: The First Avenger and X-Men: First Class are all released in the brief span of three months. We’ve all seen their trailers and movie posters, and while some are more successful than others, let’s face it—so far none have generated the kind of heat that comes with a new installment of The Dark Knight or even the Iron Man movie.

See the Blastr’s List Here