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Tag Archive: Dominic West


Norwegian film director Roar Uthaug (Escape, The Wave) and writer Geneva Robertson-Dworet (ROM, M.A.S.K., Sherlock Holmes 3, Captain Marvel, Dungeons & Dragons, Gotham City Sirens) are returning to the core of the character designed and created by Toby Gard to become one of the world’s best-selling franchises in the new trailer released today for the reboot of the Lara Croft franchise.  Even more than the last trailer for the film, clips from today’s preview mirror some of the same kind of cliffhanger scenes found in each of the original trilogy of Indiana Jones movies–the same kind of adventure that made the original video game a success.

If you have any doubts that Vikander looks the part, just check out the comparison video discussed here earlier, which shows just how closely Vikander matches the Lara in the video game Rise of the Tomb Raider.  Lara Croft has been around since 1996, in various versions of game play, based on at least eight different real-life models, and even voiced by the likes of Ashes to Ashes star Keeley Hawes and Good Will Hunting and The Riches star Minnie Driver.

Check out today’s new trailer for Tomb Raider:

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All you need to do to tell Alicia Vikander can not only act but has star power is watch her as the dramatic yet humorous secret agent in 2015’s The Man from U.N.C.L.E.  Or you could watch her portray a reality without a soul as a borg in 2014’s critically acclaimed sci-fi film Ex Machina.  Or how about her Oscar-winning performance awarded last year for her work in The Danish Girl?  She’s in theaters right now opposite Christoph Waltz in Tulip Fever and it seems more than fitting that the critically acclaimed dramatic actress is stepping into what could be a lucrative, major action hero role for her, taking over for Angelina Jolie in the reboot of Tomb Raider.  

This week started with the first official look at Vikander as video game franchise character Lara Croft in the first teaser poster for the film.  With the first trailer for the movie now available it’s clear that Norwegian film director Roar Uthaug (Escape, The Wave) and writer Geneva Robertson-Dworet (ROM, M.A.S.K., Sherlock Holmes 3, Captain Marvel, Dungeons & Dragons, Gotham City Sirens) are returning to the core of the character designed and created by Toby Gard to become one of the world’s best-selling franchises.  Gard said he left the company he created Lara Croft for because he was opposed to the idea and marketing of Lara’s sex appeal, with ever-increasing breast size in the game sequels after he left.  The sex appeal is still there but the film in the first trailer looks to be all about the adventure, exploring environments, solving riddles, and navigating traps with villains on her tail.  Clips from the trailer mirror some of the same kind of cliffhanger scenes found in each of the original trilogy of Indiana Jones movies–the same kind of adventure that made the original video game a success.  If you have any doubts that Vikander looks the part, just check out the comparison video after the clip below, which shows just how closely Vikander matches the Lara in the video game Rise of the Tomb Raider.

Lara Croft has been around since 1996, in various versions of game play, based on at least eight different real-life models, and even voiced by the likes of Ashes to Ashes star Keeley Hawes and Good Will Hunting and The Riches star Minnie Driver.  The new film co-stars Walton Goggins, who always plays that half-cocked villain you are pleased to see get crushed under the hero’s toes, popping up in films like Predators, Cowboys and Aliens, Django Unchained, G.I. Joe: Retaliation, and The Hateful Eight.  A big surprise–one of our favorite genre actors, Nick Frost (Attack the Block, Doctor Who, Shaun of the Dead, The World’s End), is in the film, plus Hannah-John Kamen (Killjoys, Star Wars: The Force Awakens, Ready Player One, Ant-Man and the Wasp), Dominic West (The Hour, John Carter, The Wire), and Kristin Scott Thomas (Mission: Impossible, The Golden Compass, The English Patient).

So check out the first trailer for Tomb Raider:

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Pixar Finding Dory

The popular Dory voiced by Ellen DeGeneres from 2003’s animated hit Finding Nemo gets to headline her own movie, and also bring back a few friends.  Ellen previewed the latest trailer for the Disney movie on her TV show yesterday.  Finding Dory features the comic stylings of DeGeneres, Albert Brooks as Marlin, Diane Keaton as Dory’s mom Jenny, Eugene Levy as Dory’s dad Charlie, and Ty Burrell as Bailey.

Ed O’Neill, Michael Sheen, Idris Elba, and Dominic West also have roles in the film under the eye of master animator John Lasseter with music by Thomas Newman.

Finding Dory

Check out this second trailer for Finding Dory:

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Pixar Finding Dory

This next film wins the “what took them so long?” award.  Dory, voiced by Ellen DeGeneres, is currently Disney and Pixar’s most popular character, with 25 million “likes” on Facebook.  Finally she gets to headline her own movie, and also bring back a few friends.  The ten years later follow-up to Finding Nemo, next year’s Finding Dory features the comic stylings of DeGeneres, the world’s funniest guy* Albert Brooks as Marlin, Diane Keaton as Dory’s mom Jenny, Eugene Levy as Dory’s dad Charlie, and Ty Burrell as Bailey.

Ed O’Neill, Idris Elba, and Dominic West are also expected to have roles in the film under the eye of master animator John Lasseter with music by Thomas Newman.

Finding Dory

Check out this first trailer for Finding Dory:

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Orphan Black Tatiana Maslany as everyone

Well it’s been one long year, with plenty to do and see, plenty of good and not-so-good to read and watch, and we’re certain we read more and reviewed more content this year than ever before.  And that in no less way was true for TV watching.  At the same time we waded through all that Hollywood had to offer and honed in on the genre films we thought were worth examining.  We went back and looked at it all and pulled together our 25 picks for our annual Best of the Best list.  Today we reveal the best content focusing on the moving image, and tomorrow we’ll run through our picks for the best in print and other media.  We hope you agree with many of these great creations of the entertainment industries, and wish everyone a great 2014!

Year’s Best Fantasy Fix — The Wizard of Oz in Theaters.  It’s a film that has been viewed on TV so many times you might take it for granted.  It’s historically been on many movie reviewers’ Top 20 movies of all time.  But when you watch The Wizard of Oz on the big screen in the middle of a year of modern blockbusters you realize how it can stand up against anything Hollywood has to offer today, even after 70 years.  Remastering the print for a new generation to see it in theaters was a highlight for movie watchers this year.

Almost Human partners

Year’s Best Sci-Fi Fix — Almost Human, Fox.  Like Continuum last year, the new series Almost Human created a future world that is believable and full of extraordinary technologies based in today’s science and touching on social issues of any day.  And even putting aside its buddy cop and police procedural brilliance, every episode plunged us into future police grappling with incredible technologies–DNA bombs criminals use to contaminate a crime scene, identity masking technology to avoid facial recognition video monitors–it was the best dose of sci-fi in 2013.

Best TV Series — Orphan Black, BBC America.  What rose above everything on TV or film this year was BBC America’s new series, the almost indescribable Orphan Black From its initial trailers that piqued our interest, to the surprise series consisting of one actress playing multiple roles that dazzled from out of nowhere, magical special effects, and a unique story of clones and X-Files-inspired intrigue propelled Orphan Black to be our clear winner for Best TV Series of 2013.

Sleepy Hollow

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The Hour cast season 2

Review by C.J. Bunce

It was a big year for Ben Whishaw.  Not only did he appear as the newest Q in the James Bond film Skyfall, a dream job and iconic role for any actor to land, Whishaw appeared as co-star in his second season of the BBC America’s The Hour offering a performance as dramatic as anything you’d find on television in 2012.  In Wednesday night’s season finale, his character Freddie Lyon took a determined, tortured soul whose new wife left him mid-season, and fulfilled a story arc begun in the backstory of The Hour, finally leaving all aspersions aside and planting a long overdue kiss on the decades-in-the-waiting eye of his affection, Romola Garai’s Bel Rowley.  In an Emmy-worthy performance he is left to single-handedly bear the burden of the underground extremes that plagued London of 1956, pummeled and left for dead by the season’s shadowy villain outside the offices of the BBC.The Hour - Vice

Vice, celebrity, corruption, murder.  It was a season that got off to a slow start, but finished like a freight train with the last two episodes leaving viewers desperate for a third season.  Early marketing tried to distance the series from its American cousin drama Mad Men, yet the glitzy, celebrity-centric early episodes seemed to scream just that But as the intrigue picked up steam with the revelation of police corruption particularly through the character of Commander Laurence Stern (played by State of Play and The Jackal’s Peter Sullivan), and the key characters’ motivations and secrets were revealed, The Hour left Mad Men in its wake.

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Review by Elizabeth C. Bunce

BBC America’s answer to the sexy retro workplace drama turned in a solid, if all-too-brief, freshman season, leaving this viewer tantalized by the last-minute revelations and dearly hoping for more.  Soon.  The fact that I watched all six episodes in a single week (thanks to Entertainment on Demand’s lineup of primetime BBC America) should tell you something.

Set in turbulent, Cold War 1956, The Hour centers on the eponymous, 60 Minutes-style news program in its fledgling days.  Helmed by young producer Bel Rowley (Romola Garai, I Capture the Castle, Amazing Grace) and fronted by dashing pretty boy Hector Madden (Dominic West, The Wire, 300), the program and its staff of ambitious journalists face world-changing foreign crises, censorship laws that hamstring their ability to report on current events, MI6 secret service oversight, and rumors of a Soviet mole on their staff.  Subplots involve the suspicious death of a debutante, investigated by frenetic and brilliant head writer/reporter Freddy Lyon, played with earnest intensity by Ben Whishaw (Bright Star, Layer Cake); as well as the obligatory love affair–this one between Rowley and Madden.  It’s a heady time for young TV news, and The Hour captures it beautifully, from the mixture of cutting edge and slightly dingy art direction of their Lime Street studio, to the adrenaline-fueled performances of all the leads, as they chase down stories and rush to meet deadlines while pushing the boundaries of their new profession.

The fictional storylines are compelling, but it’s in dramatizing the real historical news that The Hour really shines.  Season One is brilliantly set during what must have been one of the most dramatic weeks in post-war history, late October 1956, when the Hungarian uprising and the Suez Crisis occurred back to back.  The Hour does a splendid job of dramatizing the counterpoint of those events, as well as the concurrent American presidential election (I suppose it won’t spoil anything to say that Eisenhower wins), to capture a moment in history with both endless depths to mine for story ideas, as well as casting an intriguing mirror on our evolving notion of the news media.

In a TV season that also includes embarrassing Mad Men lookalikes Pan Am and The House Bunny, what The Hour delivers best might be its focus on strong female characters.  From successful professionals Rowley and Lix Storm (Anna Chancellor, Law & Order: UK, MI-5) to doomed socialite Ruth Elms (newcomer Vanessa Kirby), the women of The Hour are complex, talented, and hold their own in the macho world of foreign correspondents and British political posturing.  But the standout performance for me was actually by Oona Chaplin (yes, that Chaplin), in the role of Marnie Madden, Hector’s long-suffering wife.  Marnie’s cool determination to maintain her upbeat composure in the face of tense international drama and humiliating personal scandal proves that her sweet mask is anything but naiveté.  Her composure wavers only once, in a deliberate confrontation with Bel, and perhaps only Bel is surprised when Marnie calmly walks out the victor.  Awards committees, take note.

I have more I’d like to say–like how nice it was to see original Torchwood co-star Burn Gorman in another role (even disappointingly cut short in episode 3 as it was!), or how the last 30 minutes of the finale took everything we thought we knew and added breathtaking layers of complexity to key characters Hector, Freddy, and… well, I won’t say.  If I have one major complaint, it’s that the season was so short!  I’m afraid it will get lost among its main competition, and that is a real shame.  Happily, it’s been reported a Series Two is on the way, though no word yet on the air date.

Catch this On Demand while it lasts, download episodes from I Tunes, or order the DVD from BBC America.

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