Jul 22 2013

Are you ready to (watch the) Rock?: New Releases Monday 22 July 2013

Tag: blinkboxblinkbox @ 9:28 am

GI Joe: Retaliation
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The Real American HeroesTM are back and this time, they recruited the one man who can revitalise ANY franchise just by appearing in it. That’s right: Dwayne ‘The Rock’ Johnson. We know that Bruce Willis and Channing Tatum are also in the film, but we really love seeing The Rock in big action roles above all else (see: this year’s Fast 6). Sure, the first GI Joe was a dopey disappointment but have we mentioned that THE ROCK IS IN THIS SEQUEL?

Trance
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Danny Boyle follows his 2012 Olympic triumph with another project set in London. This time, it’s a mind-bending thriller set in the intersecting world of crime, hypnosis and art auctioning. James McAvoy plays a junior auctioneer whose worries are only getting started when a dangerous group of armed burglars take him to a hypnotherapist in order to find out where he hid a priceless painting. The plot takes more turns than a game of Monopoly but with Boyle’s talent for amazing visuals, discomforting editing and ace soundtracking, Trance becomes one of the most experimental thrillers we’ve seen in years.

Paperboy (Early Digital Release)
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Zac Efron and Matthew McConaughey are idealistic reporters who are investigating the case of John Cusack, a convicted murderer sitting on death row. Helping (or perhaps hindering) them in their quest is Nicole Kidman, a sexy white-trash vamp who believes she is in love with Killer Cusack, despite never having met him. This films is definitely weird, totally over-the-top, and features insane Nicolas Cage-level performances from Kidman and Cusack. Check this out: you’re either going to love this film or leave it feeling icky and confused.

Small Apartments (Early Digital Release)
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Matt Lucas makes his debut as an American leading man in this strange, quirky comedy from music video guru Jonas Åkerlund (Spun). Lucas plays Franklin, an eccentric living in a building full of other eccentrics. Things can only get stranger when Franklin accidentally kills his landlord, setting off a series of weird events. We don’t want to go into too much detail about the plot, but you can be certain that any film with Dolph Lundgren as ‘Dr. Sage Mennox’ must be totally mental. A pitch-black independent comedy, it boasts a supporting cast that includes James Caan, Billy Crystal, Johnny Knoxville and Juno Temple.

In The House
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Art House darling François Ozon follows up his broad 2010 comedy Potiche with this darkly comic meditation on the art of writing. Snobbish High School literature teacher Fabrice Luchini starts taking an interest in one of his students: a prodigy with a pen who writes all about his budding friendship with classmate Rapha; a relationship entirely predicated on assimilating into his family. Luchini knows that he shouldn’t encourage Claude’s borderline sociopathic behaviour, but he’s intrigued by the boy’ talent. In turns dark, hilarious and accessibly philosophical, In The House plays like good mid-period Woody Allen film.

Jack the Giant Slayer (New to Rent)
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X-Men director Bryan Singer turns his hand to this eye-popping retelling of a tale as old as time. Skins’ Nicholas Hoult stars as a young farm boy who leads a quest to rescue a princess from a group of ugly giants who live up in the sky! Hoult is joined by a band of merry British character actors including Ewan McGregor, Ewen Bremner and Bill Nighy, all of whom are a lot of fun. It might sound like they’ve made a straightforward adaptation of the classic story but the elaborately epic action sequences are really something else!

Sammy’s Great Escape (New to Rent)
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It’s Turtle Time once more at blinkbox as we see the early digital release of Sammy’s Great Escape. A sequel to an earlier film we see our titular (or should I say… turtle-ar?) character abducted by poachers, leaving an adorable pair of newly hatched Leatherbacks with the job of rescuing him from an expensive underwater aquarium. Sure: it’s an awful lot like Finding Nemo, but are your kids seriously going to care about that?

For more of the latest movies, check out blinkbox’s New Releases department.


Jul 19 2013

Win AWESOME ‘Game of Thrones’ Licensed Merchandise!

Tag: blinkboxblinkbox @ 3:58 pm

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Our Game of Thrones week wouldn’t be complete without a great competition. So for all you GoT fans out there, we’ve got a pretty neat collection of officially-licensed swag to give away this week including:

  • A Game of Thrones: The Card Game
  • Jon Snow Pop! Figurine
  • House Lannister & House Stark Wine Glasses
  • Hand of King Pin
  • Jon Snow Poster
  • Baratheon Storm’s End T-Shirt
  • Map of Westeros mouse mat
  • House Sigil Magnet Set

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In order to win this treasure trove of cool Game of Thrones merchandise, all you have to do is answer this one simple question about our dragon skull (see this video) by 23:59 on Monday 22 July 2013:

Game of Thrones Season 3 is now available on blinkbox priced at £17.99 (SD) and £23.99 (HD).


Jul 19 2013

Maisie Williams Rocks ‘Game of Thrones’ Red Carpet Event (and Vines about it too)

Tag: blinkboxblinkbox @ 3:02 pm

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LONDON, Friday 19 July 2013: With the release of Game of Thrones’ Third Season this week at blinkbox, many fans of the epic HBO series were tucked away at home last night, bingeing on episode after episode. But for a few lucky customers, the Tower of London was the place to be as blinkbox celebrated Season Three’s launch with an exclusive red carpet event.

In attendance were celebs, fans and journalists; but the big surprise of the evening were GoT stars Maisie Williams and Joe Dempsie!

Better known to viewers as Arya and Gendry, they were kind enough to talk about their experiences working on Season 3. Maisie talked about working with Charles Dance (who apparently goes by ‘Charlie’); Joe revealed the secret behind how they shot a scene in which he looked to be covered in leeches (they just used real leeches); and both of them gave their best Hodor impressions!

Here’s a little taste of the event from our friends at ITN:

Along with celebrity guests and our blinkbox super-fans, Maisie and Joe jumped at the opportunity to get their picture taken with our 40-ft dragon skull!
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In between speaking to a packed audience and learning her lines for Season 4, The Queen of  All Social Media also took the opportunity to Vine her backstage experience:

So go ahead and obey them: Game of Thrones Season 3 is now available on blinkbox priced at £17.99 (SD) and £23.99 (HD).


Jul 18 2013

How did this Dragon Skull end up on an English beach?

Tag: blinkboxblinkbox @ 1:21 pm

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In case you hadn’t noticed Game of Thrones Season 3, the most anticipated TV event of the year, made its debut this week at blinkbox.

We’ve been excited about this release for quite some time and to mark the occasion, we commissioned a group of sculptors to create a 9-foot tall dragon’s skull, just like the ones found in the dungeons of The Red Keep in King’s Landing.

On Monday, the finished ‘artifact’ was placed at Charmouth Beach in Dorset under the cover of night to ensure tourists and locals woke up the next morning to an unbelievable sight!
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To get a better idea of how this came about, check out this short ‘making of’ clip:

Since we buried the skull on Monday, the pictures have been picked up by news sources internationally! From the Metro to USA Today, we couldn’t be more surprised at the overwhelmingly positive way people have received this sculpture!

Game of Thrones Season 3 is now available on blinkbox priced at £17.99 (SD) and £23.99 (HD).

It is not available on our rival streaming services Lovefilm Instant, Netflix or iTunes.


Jul 18 2013

Review: Eden

Tag: blinkboxblinkbox @ 12:38 pm

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Note: Eden is receiving a simultaneous release this week. It will be available both on blinkbox and at your local specialist cinema (if you live in a big city)

Hyun Jae is a Korean-American teen living in Texas who heads to a bar one night with her best friend. They’ve scored a pair of fake IDs and before they know it, they’re being hit on by the cute firefighter sitting at the bar.

Cut to: days later. Hyun Jae has been kidnapped and is being held in a storage facility in the middle of the desert. She’s surrounded by teenage girls; many of them are foreign, all of them have been forced into prostitution. Renamed ‘Eden’ by the facility’s cruel boss (Beau Bridges), she’s trucked off to frat parties and suburban homes and forced to degrade herself in any number of ways. She tries to tell people what’s happened to her but she’s met with fear, or perhaps apathy from members of the public.

Based on horrific true events, the film’s story is co-written by Chong Kim, an American girl who was kidnapped and forced into prostitution much the same way as her protagonist. This kind of subject matter wouldn’t necessarily thrive in a film with bigger production values or showier camerawork and director Megan Griffiths goes to great pains to ground the film in details. It succeeds on the merits of the minutiae: showing the captors placating the girls by handing out kittens or the creepy ways in which they’d make the girls do office work as well.

Tackling the title role is Jamie Chung, who you may remember from Sucker Punch, in which she also played a poor girl being held against her will and subjected to psycho-sexual torture. Her acting seems a little mannered in the first act, but as Eden goes through one of the worst experiences imaginable, her change from young girl to a harder, wiser and smarter woman is pretty palpable.

It’s an incredibly harrowing experience but with a 98 minute run-time, it remains a tight film that’s careful not to fetishise the abuse or become leery. It’s a serious and hefty story: and the film-makers have had the good sense of just telling it without any bells and whistles.

Eden is available at both cinemas and blinkbox from 19 July


Jul 18 2013

‘Game of Thrones’ Announces Season 4 Directors!

Tag: blinkboxblinkbox @ 9:50 am

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Game of Thrones week rolls on with a few exciting pieces of news today!

First, there was the announcement at Comic-Con that Sherlock writer and League of Gentlemen star Mark Gatiss would be joining the cast in Season 4. There was no mention of the character he would be playing but it wouldn’t be unreasonable to assume any talk of future plot points would be met by the online ire of the Spoiler-Stasi.

Taking a look behind the camera, the show’s director line-up for the coming season has also been announced. Now, even if you’re not that interested in the behind-the-scenes machinations of the show, there are a few interesting names in the list, not least of all the return of Neil Marshall. He’s the man behind the greatest horror film of the 2000s (The Descent) took the helm on season two’s epic Blackwater episode, who the producers apparently brought on for his ability to shoot large action scenes quickly and cost-effectively. Those are 2 qualities that are valued above all else in a television director.

Here’s the full list of shot-callers for Season 4:

Episode 1: David Benioff & D.B. Weiss
Episodes 2, 3, 8, 10: Alex Graves
Episodes 4, 5: Michelle MacLaren
Episodes 6, 7: Alik Sakharov
Episodes 9: Neil Marshall

Show-runners and head writers David Benioff and D.B. Weiss are making their directorial debut with the first episode, which is not unusual for television dramas. West Wing veteran Alex Graves is taking the lion’s share of the directing duties with a four episode slate but we’re also utterly excited about the return of Michelle McLaren. Having just finished shooting her very final season as directing producer of Breaking Bad, McLaren will be adding to her 2 episodes of Game of Thrones with another couple of mid-season entries.

The majority of these episodes will be written by Benioff and Weiss, with novelist George R.R. Martin contributing a single episode as he has done for the past few seasons. Although bearing in mind that Martin still has 2 novels left to publish before the show catches up, he should probably stop dicking around in Hollywood and return to his writing cave.

Game of Thrones Season 3 is now available on blinkbox priced at £17.99 (SD) and £23.99 (HD). It is not available on rival streaming services Lovefilm Instant, Netflix or iTunes.

Jul 18 2013

Comic-Con Exclusive: First Glimpse of Jamie Foxx as Electro in ‘Spider-Man 2′

Tag: blinkboxblinkbox @ 8:57 am


If there’s one thing that San Diego’s annual comic convention is known for, it’s the sheer volume of teaser trailers that premiere there every year. Just about every one of next year’s summer blockbusters will be debuting some footage this week — some a little more teaser-y than others. Example: this 40-second promo video that introduces Jamie Foxx‘s villain from next year’s Amazing Spider-Man sequel.

It’s a nifty piece of footage that will undoubtedly got the convention hall whooping, if only as a Pavlovian response.

In other Spider-Man news, British actress Felicity Jones let slip in an interview that the film will also feature a rebooted version of The Goblin. With Electro and Paul Giamatti‘s The Rhino, this brings the number of super-villains in this film up to 3.

And if there’s anything the Spider-Man producers took home from the experience of making Spider-Man 3, its the indisputable fact that mo’ villains, mo’ quality storytelling.

The Amazing Spider-Man 2 is due for an 18 April 2014 release


Jul 17 2013

RIDDICK Fills Up Red Band Trailer with (Vin) Diesel, Then Sets it On Fire

Tag: blinkboxblinkbox @ 4:07 pm


This year, Vin Diesel takes advantage of his recent career resurgence to return to the character that made him a star in the first place. Following on from The Chronicles of Riddick, we find Diesel’s glowing-eyed anti-hero back on familiar territory, smashing monsters on a planet plunged into darkness. He’s also up against a group of bounty hunters who are caught between turning Riddick in for a big payday and letting him loose so he can save their lives.

Co-starring Karl Urban and BSG‘s Katee Sackhoff, writer/director David Twohy has assembled a strong cast with serious science-fiction pedigree. And by the look of this trailer, he’s also gone back to basics and made a nuts-and-bolts horror thriller: something closer to the awesome Pitch Black than the bloated Chronicles.

Riddick hits UK cinemas on Wednesday 4th September


Jul 16 2013

Comic-Con Exclusive: Mondo Poster for ‘Godzilla’

Tag: blinkboxblinkbox @ 12:30 pm

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As we all know, July is the nerdiest month of the year and it’s all thanks to a single event in San Diego: Comic-Con.

Years ago, Comic-Con actually used to be a comic book convention. It was all about letting artists and writers meet the fans, while flogging some t-shirts that featured Namor, The Sub-Mariner. These days, mainstream culture has pretty much merged with geek culture. There are only a handful of summer blockbusters each year that aren’t based on Marvel or DC properties. But one of this year’s most anticipated events has nothing to do with comic books actually, but rather a remake of a Japanese icon. Perhaps the Japanese icon: Godzilla.

British director Gareth Edwards has been hard at work on the set of Warner Bros’ feature that conveniently ignores the 1998 Roland Emmerich joint that some of us had the poor fortune of seeing for our 13th birthday. He’ll be making a big presentation on Saturday with the promise of debuting new footage.

And to get everyone even more excited, Warner Bros and Legendary Pictures have commissioned a poster from Mondo to mark the occasion. Like their celebrated posters for Austin’s Alamo Drafthouse cinema, Mondo have pulled out the stops with this eminently collectable image. Showing a decimated building in the iconic shape of the great beast, this is the very definition of a teaser poster.

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Pretty cool, huh?

Godzilla is penciled in for a 16 May 2013 release here in the UK. I imagine we’ll be talking about it a lot more before then.


Jul 16 2013

Watch a scene from Kanye West’s unaired HBO improvised ‘comedy’

Tag: blinkboxblinkbox @ 9:28 am

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Kanye West is many things: rapper, producer, entrepreneur, The Voice of a Generation™, fish stick aficionado. But if there’s one thing he’s not known for, it’s easy charm and a facility with improv comedy — which makes it all the more befuddling that West once shot an improvised comedy pilot for HBO. Produced by Curb Your Enthusiam‘s Larry David (who recalls West first introducing himself as “the black Larry David”) the pilot never saw the light of day. That is… until this following scene was discovered on YouTube:

We could go about dissecting why this scene doesn’t work but let’s just consider one point:

In Extras, Ricky Gervais‘ characters was frustrated when a member of public didn’t recognise him, the joke was on him for being self-obsessed. When the Make-a-Wish Foundation lady in this sketch claims not to know who Kanye is, SHE is the stupid one for not recognising the single most important artist working in any medium today.

Kanye West’s Untitled Comedy Spectacular will likely never see the light of day

[via AV Club]