New ‘Man of Steel’ Trailer Fuels Comparisons to ‘Batman Begins’

The second trailer hit for Superman: Man of Steel and this one has a lot more meat to it and may give us more confidence in it going in. Watch it below.

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KVu3gS7iJu4[/youtube]

The initial set of teasers were cryptic, starting with iconic imagery of Henry Cavill who is playing Superman/Kal-El/Clark. Making it even more mysterious were scenes of laundry hung, drying in the wind, a bearded Clark Kent working on a fishing boat, and later hitchhiking. Initial reactions were spread across the board ranging from confusion to guarded excitement. One of the teasers featured a voice over from Russell Crowe (as Jor-El)  inspired from Grant Morrisson’s award-winning story, All-Star Superman (a 12-part stand-alone story that covered all of the wonderful eras and aspects of Superman perfectly–every Superman fan should read it). Despite mixed reviews, the teaser created mystery surrounding the reboot, especially with the imagery. If there was a hopeful impression to take away from that first trailer, it was that All-Star Superman reminded readers how great Superman could still be in the proper treatment.

man of steel chest emblem

Many fans view this as Zack Snyder’s (300, Watchmen) version of Superman, but I choose to see this being more about a script by David S. Goyer, who co-wrote the entire Dark Knight trilogy with filmmaker Christopher Nolan (Inception, Memento). The two of them have teamed up once again for Man of Steel and it is their screenplay from which Snyder is working from. And regardless of what you think about Snyder, Nolan has never put his name on a subpar film.

When the second trailer hit this morning, there was much more to gather about what the film will be about. We see a contrast of his birthparents from the planet Krypton sending their child to Earth, knowing he would be something extraordinary. While the farmers who take Kal-El in, Ma and Pa Kent (Diane Lane and Kevin Costner) want him to keep his powers a secret because of how poorly our world treats things it doesn’t know.

man of steel baby clark

Toddler Clark Kent: The world’s too big, mom.
Ma Kent: Then make it small. Focus on my voice and pretend it’s an island. Can you see it?
Toddler Clark Kent: I see it.

Clark Kent in therapy? A farmer raising an alien has to come up with some coping devices. Next a clip shows an older Clark saving a bus crashing into a lake. The ramifications of using his powers are endangering because the parents of the children on the bus come forward to the Kents that their children were witnesses to this superhuman act.

man of steel pa kent

Pa Kent: You have to keep this side of yourself a secret.
Teenage Clark Kent: What was I supposed to do? Let them die?
Pa Kent: Maybe.

That’s a pretty grim response by Pa and here’s where we get that grounding in the real world that Goyer and Nolan did with Batman. They found that the heart of Batman Begins was connecting a young Bruce Wayne with his father, falling down a well, and living in the shadow of his father’s work and philanthropy. Wayne is crushed, trying to live up to these expectations and instead wastes his opportunity until he is saved by the League of Shadows. Goyer and Nolan used several comic stories as inspiration for Batman Begins, including The Man Who Falls by Denny O’Neil and Dick Giordano, Batman: The Long Halloween and its sequel, Batman: Dark Victory by Jeph Loeb and Tim Sale, and Batman: Year One by Frank Miller and David Mazzuchelli.

Nolan once stated that his approach for Batman Begins was to construct an origin story no one had seen before while Goyer said that they wanted the audience to care for the duality of Wayne and Batman. There was some serious apprehension at this approach early on by audiences, but once viewers saw this new take, the majority embraced it and quickly put any older Batman film safely out of their mind. This writing due looks to be doing the exact same thing with Superman: Man of Steel.

man of steel arctic

Man of Steel looks to root Superman in being internally tormented with what Jor-El wanted for him and the Kents trying to protect him and raise him with their values. They aim for us to care about Superman and Clark Kent, and the reasons which drive him to the point at which he becomes public is where Nolan and Goyer has taken the biggest liberty to construct. Like Jesus in the bible, there is a large gap of time unaccounted for in the comics, where Clark leaves Smallville and we see him become an adult in Metropolis and has taken on the Superman mantle, slowly revealing himself. Man of Steel looks to investigate that much interpreted Superboy period that’s been done in a variety of ways and find a definitive way in the films where he becomes Superman. That decision to come forth as Superman appears to be a great burden. The structure of Man of Steel could be set up a similarly to Batman Begins where it may take a good two-thirds of the movie passing before we finally see Superman don the new (and controversial) threads and take that momentous leap, hurtling into space.

Smallville fans are familiar with Pa Kent being suppressive of Clark’s birthright to agonizing levels, never fully learning how to fly until the end of the final season of the CW TV drama. That type of parenting we see a glimpse of in the new trailer at least explains why Clark would isolate himself in what looks like scenes from the Deadliest Catch. If he is in the Arctic waters, that puts him geographically closer to where the Fortress of Solitude has been known to be located where we presume he’s at when he goes for that high jump record into outer space.

man of steel solitude

So it looks like we get an identity crisis of a man wrestling with wanting to be truthful to what he is versus the fear of his Earth guardians telling him to restrain himself. Maybe we’ll see Pa Kent tell Clark he can’t date until he’s 21 too. In all seriousness, the trailer winds down with a handful of scenes including the destruction of Krypton, the first scene with Zod (Michael Shannon), Lois Lane (Amy Adams), Superman arrested and then him saving people.

Superman: My father believed if the world found out who I really was, they’d reject me. He was convinced that the world wasn’t ready. What do you think?

man of steel lois and clark

Is this to make Superman’s introduction to the world as more of a vigilante? The arrest of Superman implies that. It may be short-lived scene and all the buzz about that theatrical poster of Superman handcuffed is more of a red herring. If Nolan and Goyer cared enough to reference comics for their take on Batman, I don’t doubt they will do the same for Superman. And perhaps this is where we get some of the greater Zod or Lois Lane stories from the comics to be used as inspiration. Maybe even Kingdom Come, by Mark Waid and Alex Ross, where Superman questions coming out into the world again. I would imagine that Zod’s reason for being on Earth and seeking out Superman would be at least half the film too, so even though we don’t see him much in these trailers, he will a grand entrance.

If you’re still wondering about where the new Superman is going, I would look to how Nolan and Goyer approached Batman Begins and believe that they’d use that as a blueprint to ground Superman: Man of Steel in our world. Whatever it is they’re doing, it’s working–so far.

What did you think?

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‘The Dark Knight Rises’ Review: Nolan Completes a Well-Rounded Trilogy

The Dark Knight Rises

Christopher Nolan’s Batman Begins successfully rebooted the Batman movie franchise, attracting a new generation of Caped Crusader fans to the big screen. While the Dark Knight’s detective skills were modestly glossed over, Nolan reminded us that Gotham City – Batman and Bruce Wayne’s hometown, was a gritty cesspool of crime and corruption. This tone had been lost when Joel Schumacher took over the directorial mantle from Tim Burton in the 90s.

Nolan’s second film, The Dark Knight, gave us arguably the best Batman movie of all time. Heath Ledger gave us a Joker that was to be feared, rivaling Christian Bale’s “swear to me” Batman. Viewers forgot they were watching a comic book adapted film, and became engrossed in one of the best crime thrillers of the decade. Nolan’s final Bat movie, The Dark Knight Rises, is less crime thriller and more action-adventure. The terrorist plot doesn’t pack the same punch as the second film, but the final forty minutes will leave you overwhelmingly satisfied with the franchise as a whole.

The Dark Knight gave us one of the best opening sequences of all time. The intensity of watching several Jokers rob a bank, while killing each other before the real Joker showed up, was an inspired and suspenseful feat of cinematic storytelling. Going into the third and final movie, it was easy to expect the same. Government agents are attempting to extradite Bane (Tom Hardy) for crimes against humanity. The trailers spoiled a lot with regard to the airplane scene and Bane’s inevitable escape. Bane’s airplane escape is more on the fantastical side of wild spy and terrorist film. The beauty of the Joker’s opening was in its simplicity. Utilizing the more mundane and landlocked act of a bank robbery did more to set the tone for movie two than the aerial confusion that takes place in The Dark Knight Rises. You get the feeling that the writers were trying to do too much – too soon.

The final movie takes place approximately eight years after Harvey Dent, aka Two Face, was pronounced dead. Commissioner Gordon (Gary Oldman) utilized his death to galvanize the police force and help institute new laws with tougher penalties on criminals. Gotham’s streets have been cleaned up and Bruce Wayne has become a hermit without any villains to fight. Wayne has also effectively diminished all the cartilage in his knees. Joseph Gordon-Levitt plays John Blake, an officer during the Gotham peace, who looks up to Gordon.

The Dark Knight Rises functions primarily as a fight between good and evil. It’s Batman and his allies versus Bane and his army. The film wants to have a psychological component, but it doesn’t come to fruition. Most of the time, we’re focused on Batman’s new gadgets. There are low-level EMPs, transforming batcycles and a wicked-powerful prototype batwing. Also the use of time jumps throughout the movie take away from the momentum. Between the first half of the movie and the climax there are several time jumps that will leave you questioning why certain things are the way they are and how come certain things aren’t happening.

Bane as a villain definitely lives up to the role of Batman’s greatest physical threat. However, a lot is lost in the use of the mask. In an interview, Nolan mentioned Hardy’s brilliance in communicating a lot with just his eyes. Because I had heard this interview, I was fixated on the eyes throughout the film. Hardy delivers an excellent performance with the mask on. However, the mask’s limiting factors hurt the viewer from feeling the full threat of Bane’s words. You’ll see his eyes, hear his words, and then wish he didn’t have the mask on so you could see everything that was going on his face.

Catwoman The Dark Knight Rises Anne HathawayAnne Hathaway does a great job as Catwoman. We don’t get any origin story and we don’t need one. Hathaway is able to switch between timid girl and the domineering Catwoman in a blink of the eye. She pulls off sexy and deadly to perfection. The story does a fantastic job of integrating the subtle attraction between Batman and Catwoman without making it a major romantic plot thread.

Flashbacks to the first two films are peppered throughout the movie, without being overbearing. It eases the story along and helps everything to come full circle. By the last half hour, you will be fully invested in the movie, despite some of the earlier lulls. The final payoff is great, making this movie franchise one of the most well-rounded trilogies yet.

Special accolades should be given to Michael Caine as Alfred. Although he only has a few scenes in the movie, each one scene is delivered to perfection. It’s also great to see Morgan Freeman as Lucius Fox. As Fox, Freeman always has a way of giving Bruce Wayne a knowing look that is always resonant.

By the way, this film gives us another “swear to me” / “where are the drugs” moment, where Bale does his angry Batman voice – so be prepared.

The Dark Knight Rises
Starring: Christian Bale, Tom Hardy, Michael Caine, Anne Hathaway, Joseph Gordon-Levitt and Gary Oldman
Directed by: Christopher Nolan
Screenplay by: Jonathan Nolan, Christopher Nolan; David S. Goyer (story)
Studio: Warner Bros.
Release Date: July 20, 2012

Rating:

8.0 / 10

Dark Knight Rises’ Star Joseph Gordon-Levitt Blasts ‘GQ’ Mag for ‘Irresponsible Claim’

When actors get to cover magazines like GQ, Billboard, People, and US Weekly, the goal is usually to promote upcoming projects and their own careers. However, sometimes lines are blurred in getting out the story.

Joseph Gordon-Levitt

This month, actor Joseph Gordon-Levitt is the cover star for GQ magazine, timed to the release of Christopher Nolan’s The Dark Knight Rises. While the actor was grateful for the cover spot, he was quite upset with the actual story within GQ’s pages.

The writer mentioned Joseph’s brother, Dan, who died in 2010. The article stated: “…the elder Gordon-Levitt died of an alleged drug overdose in 2010. “It was an accident” is all Joe will say about that.”

By using the word “alleged”, the publication strongly hinted that there was evidence to corroborate a potential overdose. Joseph and his family found the statement to be harmful and “irresponsible.”

On his Tumblr page, Gordon-Levitt stated that: “My parents and I are disappointed with what the article chose to focus on regarding this sensitive subject.”

Joseph went on to point out that the coroner’s report did not state that drugs were the cause of his brother’s death. He also stated that he chooses not to speak “publicly” about Dan’s death, but has made an exception due to the article in GQ.

Using the word “alleged” technically allows the writer to say whatever she wants. The “allegations” to which she must be referring were made by a handful of gossip websites. They are factually incorrect according to the coroner’s office and the police department. I don’t like publicly speaking about my brother’s death, but I’m making an exception to correct this irresponsible claim.

Watch the Trailer for The Dark Knight Rises

The cover of this month’s issue of GQ, calling Joseph Gordon-Levitt the “Boy Wonder.”

Preview ‘The Dark Knight Rises’ with this 13-minute Behind-The-Scenes Featurette

dark knight rises batman

Take all of the trailers, the principal photography footage that’s been leaked or flip-cammed, and there’s still a surprising shroud of mystery surrounding The Dark Knight Rises. Warner Bros. released a 13-minute behind-the-scenes type featurette that serves as a good starting point for Christopher Nolan’s final Batman (Christian Bale) film as told by the film’s cast and crew. It feels like it’s a typical electronic press kit extra you’d find on a DVD extra, but it does serve as a nice preview, introducing all the new players in the story and all of the big action sets–and no, it doesn’t spoil anything that hasn’t been already shown in the trailers.

“Everything seems fine on the surface,” producer Emma Thomas teases. “But it’s all built on this lie.” The lie that Thomas speaks of is that Harvey Dent never became Two-Face and his demise was kept secret to the public so that they could preserve his legacy, while demonizing Batman into hiding.

dark knight rises batcave

And as Gotham laid quiet in harmony for an extended amount of time–about eight years to be exact–The Dark Knight Rises looks at that false peace crumbling underneath at the hands of something more threatening than before. Commissioner Gordon lies on a hospital bed, telling someone, “The Batman has to come back.”

Alfred (Michael Caine) looks like he’ll play a big part in getting Batman back in action and even though there’s been speculation about Joseph Gordon Levitt’s role, John Blake looks like he will represent the point of view of Batman through the eyes of a Gotham City cop who still believes he has a purpose in this world. And Catwoman (Anne Hathaway)? She’s not necessarily a pure villain as much as she is a lone wolf with her own code of ethics, as she’s portrayed in the comics. There’s still a mystery surrounding Bruce Wayne in a prison and what leads to a big sequence at Wall Street.

dark knight rises christopher nolan

The threat in this film is Bane, played by Thomas Hardy (Inception) who describes The Dark Knight Rises as “a multi-layered story with massive amounts of action.” The video takes a closer look at a few of those action pieces and there’s a cool time lapse video of how the production hanger is built up and created into two of the film’s bigger sets. Plus, seeing Hardy yucking it up about seeing Bale next to him in the makeup chair is good for a laugh or two.

“What we’re constructing here is a very, very elemental conflict between good and evil,” Nolan previews. Watch the video below and start making your plans for July 20, when The Dark Knight Rises hits theaters and IMAX.

Gary Oldman Joins ‘Robocop’ Reboot

In this current day and age of movie reboots, you won’t find more hesitation towards one than MGM’s modernization of Robocop starring The Killing’s Joel Kinnaman as Alex Murphy. But the latest casting news has softened the news of reboot. THR reported that Gary Oldman (The Dark Knight, Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy) will play Norton, the scientist who takes the mangled mess of Murphy, who is nearly killed in the line of duty, and creates a cyborg cop. It sounds like they are going to play up Norton’s role as someone who struggles to find a balance between creating a corporate machine and the idealistic vision he had in creating a blend of man and machine.

gary oldman dark knight

Oldman is one of those few actors who rarely disappoints, always playing within his part, never trying to be more than what’s asked, as seen in Christopher Nolan’s Batman trilogy as Commissioner Gordon. He also carries a film with ease like in Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy. And we still can’t forget him in Leon: The Professional and The Fifth Element.

As for Kinnaman, there is a big weight on his shoulders to give a performance that for at least two hours, make us forget about Peter Weller’s in the original Robocop trilogy. I recently saw Kinnaman in the indy relationship charmer, Lola Versus, and I’ve got to admit, it was hard seeing him cleaned up and playing the perfect-boyfriend-but-confused-fiancée but he’s the one thing I keep watching The Killing for each week.

joel kinnaman

Part of the challenge of a Robocop reboot is that the original film was so perfectly done. It was a hard R, the Detroit setting was perfect, and Weller reinvented his acting career, which was already nearly 15 years old when he did Robocop. Everything came together quite nicely, and even though the quality of the sequels are debatable, there’s not much that’s wrong with the first Robocop. Why reboot it? The film is already 25 years old (!) and any film that old, about the future, is seen as fair game in today’s Hollywood probably because it’s rental cycle has reached a low.

José Padilha is a lesser-known choice for director who began his career making documentaries. James Vanderbilt however, is a more interesting choice for screenwriter. He adapted Robert Graysmith’s book for Zodiac, and he’s one of the three writers credited (with Alvin Sargent and Steve Kloves) for Amazing Spider-Man. He also adapted The Losers from Andy Diggle and Jock’s Vertigo comic. I’ll be interested in what Vanderbilt does to set this apart from the original.

Filming for Robocop is set to start in the fall, with a summer release in 2013.

Must Watch: The Dark Knight Rises Trailer 3

“I’m Gotham’s reckoning.” -Bane

The summer movie season may kick into full gear this weekend with The Avengers, but don’t forget a little Warner Bros. tentpole called The Dark Knight Rises.

Behold, the third (and possibly final?) trailer for the upcoming final installment of director Christopher Nolan’s take on the Batman franchise.

What’s great about this trailer is the gradual crescendo it reaches, going from essentially no music with muted action to the full-on Hans Zimmer score with titillating action sequences. However, for a Batman movie trailer, it doesn’t focus as much on the film’ titular character, instead giving us more of a glimpse into the terror that supervillain Bane is going to cause and showing Selina Kyle as more of an ally to the caped crusader than a foe. We also get a generous number of looks at Joseph Gordon-Levitt’s John Blake character. And for the cherry on top, Batman exclaims to Catwoman, “This isn’t a car” just as what looks like the Batmobile runs up the side of a Gotham skyscraper and takes flight.

This trailer sets the stage for what will arguably be the summer’s darkest superhero blockbuster. Now more than ever, it seems possible that Nolan can top the amazingness of 2008’s The Dark Knight.

It’s also worth noting that this trailer is the first TDKR trailer to also feature the new DC Comics logo.

Enjoy and don’t forget to tell us what you think of the trailer!

‘The Dark Knight Rises’ Miniatures Revealed as Part of New DC Universe Toy Line

At Toy Fair, Jakks Pacific revealed new miniatures for the upcoming film The Dark Knight Rises. The non-posable figures include Bane (Tom Hardy), Catwoman (Anne Hathaway) and Batman (Christian Bale). The lineup also includes a miniature batmobile with the original military design. If you’ve seen any of the leaked footage from the production set in Pittsburgh, you probably saw these vehicles along with Catwoman’s motorcycle and the Batwing.

The toy maker also showed off a new line of plush buddies for the DC Universe as well as miniatures for some of the core Justice League heroes and villains. These included the Joker, Batman, Superman, Aquaman, Green Lantern (Hal Jordan), The Flash, Cyborg, Blue Beetle and Robin. The Blue Beetle has become even more popular in the past few years thanks to the Batman: The Brave and the Bold cartoon.

Bane is posed with him arms up in the air as well as one of his legs. He looks like he is either doing a celebratory touchdown dance or as if he were about to step on someone.

Catwoman is posed with a gun, instead of her trademark whip which has become a staple of TV and Film versions of Catwoman.

Batman is shown with his line launcher, one of the popular tools used in the Batman: Arkham City video game to solve Riddler puzzles.

There is also a miniature batmobile with the original military design.

Here, you can see all of the DC Universe miniatures. Batman and Superman seem to be inspired by Jim Lee’s drawings.
dc universe miniatures

However, The Joker is more of a throwback to his older, cartoony self. The Joker comes with a giant mallet.

This picture shows you the scale difference between Jakks’ biggest Superman and Batman plush buddies and the smaller miniatures.

Check out the full gallery from Jakks’ new DC Universe lineup below.

Click thumbnails to enlarge and browse the gallery.

DC Comics and DC Entertainment Reveal Secret New Identity

Following up our discussion on DC Comics registration for a new trademarked logo and brand identity, FastCoCreate.com posted this feature article with DC Entertainment’s executive vice president of sales, John Hood and senior vice president of franchise management, Amit Desai where they explained and revealed how the relatively lackluster logo design will be applied in a variety of ways based on the product it is licensed on or the comic it’s placed on or the movie it’s stamped on.

dc logo applied on iphone

In the article the executives explained that they didn’t want one static logo but a whimsical logo that could “Mold to the properties, characters and media, especially in the digital space, were it becomes interactive.” Desai said specifically, “What is special about DC content is the notion of a dual identity. When you think about our DC Comics superheroes, there’s a secret identity. When you think about Vertigo, it’s this notion of good vs. evil in many of the stories. And so, in addition to flexibility, the new logo communicates this idea of dual identity. There’s more than meets the eye. You have to take a closer look to understand the richness of our characters and stories.”

dc logo on comics

Hmm. Isn’t “more than meets the eye,” Transformers? And while there’s good vs. evil in some Vertigo comics, that’s the furthest thing that comes to mind when I think of that imprint. It’s more like, provocative stories and ideas where good and evil aren’t so easily defined and they’re written and drawn by kick-ass creators. I’m not very satisfied by their classification of Vertigo books to be frank, especially when the characters and stories don’t wear identifiable logos or costumes. How do you customize the logo for Scalped, Unwritten, or Spaceman?

dc logo on spine

For the DC Superheroes, the logo works better. Some of them are very identifiable by a simple treatment on a blank logo. I understand the approach, but it waters down a simplified, stronger single identity in my opinion. All of these quirky design elements are great for web pages and glossy coated paper, but until you have to simplify it for news print ads or applications that require stripping away those gradients and special effects, you’re left with the simple, dull logo with flat colors.

The peeling D is further explained as a way to “tie storytelling content or character we’re showcasing, and leverage those colors” whereas the C can be a “vessel to showcase stories and character.” Desai continues that “it’s unexpected, requires a little thinking and some storytelling behind that mark.” Rood and Desai was in charge of the new branding and became partners with global branders Landor Associates and continues the face lift of DC Comics and DC Entertainment as it reinvents itself as something much bigger than a comic book company.

DC’s new logo will start appearing on comics and graphic novels in March, and a new website will be developed, product packaging, and consumer products. Also expect to see it on The Dark Knight Rises and Justice League Doom, crafted especially for those properties.

So instead of one logo and brand, there are hundreds and potentially thousands of logos that will be used. The logo is more of a mark that morphs and I still say that it’s a weaker approach than one strong identity. We’re dabbling in a lot of graphic design speak here and branding theory but I’m still not fond at what we’re being told as the reasons behind the drastic change. In the six examples below the most recognizable ones are Flash and Green Lantern because of the colors and light treatments on the C. Then the next one that clicks is the Watchmen in the lower right.

dc logo designed for six characters

Then you look at the other three, and that’s where it gets messy. The top center logo I’m guessing is Catwoman with a whip, but the logo almost disappears against a dark background as they’ve conveniently shown. The top left I’m going to take a stab at Superman for Man of Steel. And in the sourced article, the bottom right with the mist coming out at the bottom is supposed to be Batman, because billowing smoke screams Batman. Maybe giving the C the texture of a penny would have been too obscure.

Given that this new identity is spearheaded by two passionate execs and has been developed for what sounds like at least a year (imagine the money that’s been spent on this change), look for the new logos to stick around for long time–love’em or hate’em. It’s still feels gimmicky to me, like someone who gets their hands on Photoshop for the first time and uses all of the special effects and filters on one image. Just because you can do it, doesn’t mean you should do it.

dc logo arkham asylum

Ultimately this all boils down to making money. Do we as consumers, comic buying customers feel better about a book because the logo matches the character I’m reading about? No. Will it make me drop the book? No. But for some reason, they want you to believe that they’re being more innovative, more creative than their competition (Marvel) and that’s part of their story. So are the subpar film efforts outside of Christopher Nolan Batman films. This would have been a strong extension of the entertainment arm of the company had Green Lantern been a home run instead of a fielder’s choice single. That film was mired by too many cooks in the kitchen. Does this whole identity change have a familiar scent? Hopefully it produces different results this time.

This identity is supposed to communicate creativity, and beneath the surface storytelling. I just wish they’d be as creative to make Green Lantern and Superman work as movies. I wish they’d continue to take the positive vibes from the first five months of DC’s 52 monthly titles and make that their reliable staple so that they can win back the market share in the comics industry for a long time and be competitive with Marvel, because that’s where it all starts.

And quickly back to the design, does anyone else find it ironic that they are pushing this entry to the electronic age of the comic when you actually swipe the screen, not flip pages or “peel” them back as you would a printed comic / graphic novel or I don’t know a sticker? Here’s hoping that people warm to this identity, because it’s not changing anytime soon. If they’re as creative as the logo intends to show, then they’ll find ways to make this work or go back to the drawing board.

See more applications of the new identity, brand/logo on DC’s Blog: The Source and share your thoughts below.

25 Films We Want To See in 2012

Happy New Year BuzzFocus readers! 2012 looks like it will be a great year of films, big and small. We’ve compiled 25 films we’re excited to see that we currently know of (there are always several festival films that come out of nowhere and become darlings later in the year). Many of them you’ll expect, some not so much. There are a few appearances by Chris Hemsworth, Leonardo DiCaprio, Channing Tatum(!) and two films by Tim Burton. The Governator, Sacha Baron Cohen, Chuck Norris are some of the familiar names making a return to the big screen. Superheroes dominate the list once again, but don’t overpopulate it like last year. Adventure is a common theme as well as wonder women. Quentin Tarantino is back on the radar, so is Ridley Scott and yes, Ben Affleck. Think you know what our #1 film is? Click through each of the five pages and see for yourself.

dark shadows

25. Tim Burton’s Dark Shadows – this is the first of two Burton entries in our Top 25, and it’s a supernatural period piece starring Johnny Depp (of course) as Barnabas Collins, a rich and powerful playboy who breaks the heart of Angelique Bouchard (Eva Green) who turns out to be a witch. Instead of killing him, Angelique turns him into a vampire and buries him alive. Over 200 years later, Barnabas is set free in 1972 and discovers Collinwood Manor is no longer the estate he remembered, filled with odd characters. See what comes out of the shadows on May 11.

bourne legacy

24. The Bourne Legacy – We’re not quite sure what a Bourne film will be without Matt Damon, but we’re going to find out on August 3. Jeremy Renner is the new CIA operative to play in Robert Ludlum’s world and Tony Gilroy will work his magic once again to see if the franchise can be recharged and keep Renner’s star rising.

ghost rider 2

23. Ghost Rider: Spirit of Vengeance – Oh, Nicholas Cage, how we’ll never be rid of you. But you have to respect his passion for the Johnny Blaze character and his persistence in making a great comic book movie. He’ll try again on February 17 when he tries to wash our taste buds of the first Ghost Rider film and we have to admit, that our interest is piqued after that pissing fire gag in the trailer. Game on, Nic Cage; game is on.

Magic Mike

22. Magic Mike – Will Hollywood let Steven Soderbergh shoot a film about male stripper how it should be? Or will they make him edit it enough to leave the viewers there to see male nudity angry? This is not just the male version of Showgirls, this story is based on Channing Tatum’s actual days as a male stripper and features Hollywood Hunks like Alex Pettyfer, Matt Bomer, and Matthew McConaughey but will audiences get to see the full monty? Pull off the quick-release chaps on June 29.

the dictator

21. The Dictator – A week after The Avengers drops, Sacha Baron Cohen comes out with his next comedic film as the dictator of fictitious Middle-East country who fights with all of strength to keep democracy out of his country. If you liked Borat and Bruno, this should not disappoint. It does however appear to be more scripted and less guerilla-styled filmmaking that was used on Cohen’s last two films. We know the Bible Belt can be oblivious but we can’t imagine him fooling anyone with that beard. Oppressing everyone on May 11.

Click Here For Films 20 – 16…

See Catwoman and Bane in ‘The Dark Knight Rises’ Trailer #2

dark knight rises batman

Here it is, the new Dark Knight Rises trailer. Please do check it out here and tell your friends about it. C’mon, you know you want to. My reactions are below the video.

What you saw
The trailer opens in Heinz Field where the Pittsburgh Steelers play and we see multiple shots as to how it was used, especially for the big wow factor when Bane (Tom Hardy) detonates the field from under a live football game. A boy is singing the “Star-Spangled Banner” while Alfred (Michael Caine) talks to Bruce Wayne (Christian Bale) about failing to take care of him. Gotham City is in that transition period of when Batman was declared an outlaw (as we recall how The Dark Knight ended) and the political unrest in the city is mounting.

the dark knight rises bane

Selina Kyle (Anne Hathaway) is seen sharing a dance with Wayne where she whispers and warns him in his ear to “You think this going to last. There’s a storm coming, Mr. Wayne. You and your friends better batten down the hatches,” because he has lived so large and left so little for the rest of Gotham. Meanwhile, Bane is leading a revolution, a prison breakout, and an act of terrorism. Standing over Wayne, Bane tells him, “When Gotham is ashes, you have my permission to die.”

dark knight rises selina

Then we see a quick montage of clips that include seeing Miranda Tate (Marion Cotillard), Gotham City Cop John Blake (Joseph Gordon-Levitt) and we see the Tumbler, Tumbler-Tanks and the Bat-Wing/Bat-Plane. GCPD looks as it their moving in on some type of operative mission but are walking into a big trap. Some of them are repelling into a giant well that reminds one of the well Bruce fell down as a child in Batman Begins and eventually became the Bat Cave. The camera pans up skyscrapers and the image of the bat is seen in the open sky, mirroring the first official theatrical poster for The Dark Knight Rises.

You can also view The Dark Knight Rises Trailer #1 here:

First Reaction
What’s keen is to see how all of that leaked footage and raw footage that made its way to the internet the last six months, looks when it’s in its final edit. So my first reaction is that Hathaway looks as if she made to look like a Tim Sale (Batman: The Long Halloween) drawing, down to the big shiny lipstick! She’s also wearing a mask while dancing with Bruce but it it just one of many for Catwoman, or is she at a Wayne-sponsored masquerade ball? In case you haven’t heard it, that isn’t Bane on auto-tuned, that is Bane speaking through his mouthpiece. It is a bit hard to make out clearly what he’s saying on first pass. I wonder if he’ll have subtitles when he talks. I’m a little mixed on the choice to garble Hardy’s voice. This is the first time we’ve seen either talk in character, unless of course you caught the Dark Knight Rises prologue this past week.

As the inmates chant, Wayne comes out of a cell that appears to be Arkham Asylum where a fellow inmate tells him that the chant means “rise.” I’m not sure if Wayne was admitted into the Asylum or if he’s undercover, but Arkham looks like something out of an M.C. Escher illustration. In other words, it’s cool.

The colors and palettes all look like trademark Christopher Nolan warm ambers and cold greens that he used in Inception. There are several shots that are shot wide, look at the screen shots we’ve included here. The picture is shot real wide and that should look magnificent on a massive IMAX screen, Nolan’s preferred method of viewing the film since much of the film have been shot on IMAX film. Share your thoughts below!

dark knight rises cotillard