I first learned about the mantis shrimp on the Oatmeal, and have been a fan ever since. As noted in the comic, the mantis shrimp is a holy underwater terror. It shoots its front leg/claw thingies at prey with the force of a gunshot. If it misses its prey, the force of that explosive motion still kills them, as it boils the water around them (emitting light in the process). Seriously, check out the videos below. These things are no joke — they can even bust the glass of an aquarium if one’s foolish enough to try and contain them. One of the most impressive characteristics of the mantis shrimp is its ability to see colors we can’t even comprehend. It can also see ultraviolet light, which we can’t. New research reveals that the mantis shrimp can see polarized light too, which essentially means that they can see cancer — an ability scientists are harnessing in new detection technologies.
A long time ago, in a galaxy far, far away…
Back to the past of the future.
Klaatu barada nikto.
In space, nothing can hear you scream. But what about explode into a huge mess of blood and guts? Can anybody hear that? That’s not necessarily the question at the heart of the upcoming thriller Debug, but it’s one I’ll ask anyway. Above is our first look at the film, directed by Stargate: Atlantis star David Hewlitt, and it eschews all the spoiler-heavy weight of theatrical trailers and just gives us the first three minutes of the film. And while not a lot happens here, it makes me far less cautious about this flick than I was before watching.
In the preview, actress Tenika Davis is seen via glitchy surveillance cameras in a small room, presumably aboard some kind of spacecraft. She somehow hacks her way out of there and enters a hallway without any clear indicators of where she’s going. (Can you imagine how much that electric bill would cost with all that hallway lighting?) She runs around in her underwear for a minute while lights begin shutting off, and it’s then she gets severely frightened of what ends up being Jason Momoa in a silver suit with a gray stripe in his hair. He says, “Let’s see what you’re made of,” and then does something bad to her.
While most sub-genres of movies see ebbs and flows as far as quality control goes, video game adaptations are almost exclusively ebbs, and some of the worst films ever made stem from such digital source material. Add the phrase “made for streaming” to the front of that description and it puts some truly heinous expectations in your mind. Luckily, Legendary Entertainment and Crackle’s upcoming feature Dead Rising: Watchtower has rounded up a solid cast to take charge against a growing zombie apocalypse, including Jesse Metcalfe (Dallas), Virginia Madsen (Witches of East End), Dennis Haysbert (The Unit), and Meghan Ory (Once Upon a Time). You’re not in good hands, zombies. (Allstate joke.)
To be expected, Dead Rising: Watchtower takes its main cues form the video game by being set in a world where zombies run amok. The outbreak was supposed to be conquered by a mandatory government-provided vaccine, but that didn’t work, and it’s up to the four lead characters to stay healthy while trying to figure out how the undead plague started.
With George Lucas having stepped away from the helm of Star Wars, the franchise finds itself in an interesting position. Like the Marvel films or the modern incarnation of Doctor Who, we now have Star Wars movies being made by people who grew up loving the material, people who are now getting to play in the same sandbox that captured their youthful imaginations. Except now it’s the real deal, and they’ve got millions of dollars to work with instead of just some action figures and an actual sandbox. But part of that new Star Wars reality is that the filmmakers returning to George Lucas’ galaxy far, far away are bound to have some strong opinions about it…and not always positive ones.
Actor Oscar Isaac is one of the lucky few, having landed a role in Episode VII that we still don’t know much of anything about. Isaac has had plenty of praise for director J.J. Abrams’ and his Episode VII castmates in recent interviews, but he was admirably candid when The Huffington Post asked how he felt about the “special edition” changes Lucas made to the original Star Wars films. He told HuffPo:
It was a big weekend for The Simpsons, a series that kicked off Season 26 with a death and had its characters imported into a crossover episode with Family Guy. (Your mileage will have varied with both episodes, though I liked them both, for better and worse.) But the greatest thing Matt Groening’s long-running series did that night was air a couch gag to end all couch gags, a creation of the Oscar-nominated animator Don Hertzfeldt that nightmarishly calls forward to the future of television’s longest-lasting family. It’s the most outside of myself I’ve ever felt watching this show.
Our love of Dredd here at GFR damn near knows no bounds, but the larger movie-going public didn’t seem to agree when the Karl Urban sci-fi/actioner opened on September 21, 2012. Up against End of Watch and the Jennifer Lawrence thriller House at the End of the Street, Dredd hit the box office with a deafening thud, landing in sixth place with a paltry $6.3 million domestic weekend total. Thankfully positive word of mouth made Dredd a hit on home video, and a cult classic that still has fans — ourselves included — clamoring for a sequel. That may be a longshot, but Dredd producer Adi Shankar recently posted a candid video where he thanks fans for rescuing the film from obscurity and changing his life in the process.
Shankar says Dredd had been a passion project of his since he was seven. Just what sparked his interest at such a young age might surprise many devoted Dredd fans, seeing as how it’s something many of those same fans have spent years deriding. We’re talking about that other Judge Dredd movie, the one with Sylvester Stallone constantly taking his helmet off and noted vaccine skeptic Rob Schneider serving as the comic relief sidekick.