4DX Experience & Film Review “Ready Player One”

Directed by: Steven Spielberg
Starring: Tye Sheridan, Olivia Cooke, Ben Mendelsohn, T.J. Miller, Simon Pegg, Mark Rylance
Distributed by: Warner Bros. Pictures
MPAA Rating: PG-13
Running time: 140 minutes

Film: 4.5 out of 5 stars
4DX Experience: 3.5 out of 5 stars
3D: 4 out of 5 stars

“Ready Player One” is easily my most anticipated film of the year. There was a lot riding on this film for me and a lot of anticipation. This is one of the first times that I have read the book before seeing the movie. I never read one of the “Harry Potter” or “The Lord of the Rings” books to date. Ernest Cline’s “Ready Player One” is one of the best books that I have read (not only once but multiple times). The audio book read by “Star Trek: The Next Generation” star Wil Wheaton is highly recommended. That being said, the movie is MEGA different from the book. I am honestly cool with it because I see how and why most changes were made and I am really happy with the film adaptation. In fact, I would say that is my favorite film that I have seen this year…and I say this because as of writing I have already seen the film twice, once in 2D and once in 3D with 4DX experience, which are two very different ways to experience this film. This is a film that gets better with each follow up viewing and I can’t wait to see it again!

I am just so excited and I can’t hold it in anymore, so let’s just start with how much pop culture is filled in this film. BEWARE, this paragraph ONLY has a few Easter Egg SPOILERS, but then again a few are from the trailers. There are nearly 100 Easter Eggs already that already have been found in this film. Some are super hidden and blink and you miss and some are just in your face awesome like visiting The Overlook Hotel from “The Shining” and getting to relive a few scenes with newly created CG footage. This shit was downright terrifying. “The Shining” is easily my favorite horror film of all time and this really left me saying “WOW!” A few of the brief ones that I literally almost lunged out of my chair were Battletoads, Spawn, the RV from “Spaceballs”, Jason Voorhees, the new live-action Ninja turtles, the ship from “Firefly”, Serenity and reference to “Pilotwings”. I really enjoyed the ability to watch the film and just stare in amazement as to how many amazing cameos their were. I felt the same way about “Wreck-it Ralph” when I first saw it and still to today. I am always looking for something new and I have a feeling I will be doing the same with “Ready Player One”,

Here is the film’s official premise: From filmmaker Steven Spielberg comes the action adventure “Ready Player One,” based on Ernest Cline’s bestseller of the same name, which has become a worldwide phenomenon.   In the year 2045, the real world is a harsh place.  The only time Wade Watts (Tye Sheridan) truly feels alive is when he escapes to the OASIS, an immersive virtual universe where most of humanity spends their days.  In the OASIS, you can go anywhere, do anything, be anyone—the only limits are your own imagination.  The OASIS was created by the brilliant and eccentric James Halliday (Mark Rylance), who left his immense fortune and total control of the Oasis to the winner of a three-part contest he designed to find a worthy heir.  When Wade conquers the first challenge of the reality-bending treasure hunt, he and his friends—called the High Five—are hurled into a fantastical universe of discovery and danger to save the OASIS.

Ok, so let’s talk about the different ways, I have experienced this film. First I saw it in 2D on a decent size screen. Let’s end this quick, this is NOT the way to see this movie. This needs to be experienced in IMAX or on the biggest screen possible. Second time, I saw this film it was in 4DX, which is the ultimate movie going experience with motion seats, environmental & water effects. I went with a friend who has never been to 4DX and he said that this was the perfect way to experience this film. I enjoyed the 4DX experience for “Ready Player One” but I didn’t love it. I felt like it was absolutely perfect for a few scenes like the race to the first key, which was like being in a long-ass rollercoaster ride. I enjoyed the 4DX experience for “Pacific Rim: Uprising” much more it just felt like it was always moving. With “Ready Player One” it was more every once in a while I remembered I was in a 4DX experience and I enjoyed it, don’t get me wrong. The 3D definitely added to the experience. When they dived into the Oasis, the 3D depth really kicked in and blew me away.

The cast I have to admit was an odd to me, since I am not that aware of the young stars Tye Sheridan and Olivia Cooke. I enjoyed their avatar characters and the motion capture used to achieve their performances. I also dug Ben Mendelsohn as the baddie. T.J. Miller appeared as avatar only, no real life character (probably due to harassment issues) but he was useless in the movie. Simon Pegg popped up for a minute here and there but definitely delivered the film’s heart as did Mark Rylance, who just blew it out of the park. I hated that he beat Slyvester Stallone (nominated for “Creed”) for Best Supporting Actor in 2015 for his role in “Bridge of Spies” and then even more after “The BFG” but he was simply amazing as James Halliday! Spielberg was smart for bringing he onto this film. He made me smile every time he spoke.

Let’s get on the topic of the director, Steven Spielberg. I originally thought that this film was not right for him as a director. But after seeing the film twice now, I know it was not ruined and he did a real solid job at trying to deliver the most exciting and satisfying adaption he could for the fans. He even threw in nodes to his own films like “Jurassic Park”. He really captured that nostalgic feeling for me. As we are watching the action unfold in “Ready Player One”, the score switches to cues from “Back to the Future” and you get chills up and down following by the audience screaming “Whoa!!!” That is a great feeling in a movie theater and that is how you know when you have a winner on your hands.

I know I haven’t gone into too much detail about how this is different from the book, cause honestly I really don’t care. The movie is different and I still liked it a lot. I also love the book, which is extremely detailed and dives more deep into the pop culture world. I personally learned so much from the book about tons of film, music and TV references. The film is a slimmed down working of the book. The process finding the keys and the opening of the gates are the biggest change that I recall. I know there are a few other major events that doesn’t carry through in the movie but I appreciate how they molded the world in the book into a fun and exciting popcorn flick!  Like I said, I have a feeling that I am not going to stop at two viewings of this film. It’s very likely I will be seeing this at least once more in the theaters, definitely IMAX 3D and seeking out some more Easter Eggs!

 

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4DX Experience Review “Pacific Rim: Uprising”

Directed by: Steven S. DeKnight
Starring: John Boyega, Scott Eastwood, Jing Tian, Cailee Spaeny, Rinko Kikuchi, Burn Gorman, Adria Arjona, Zhang Jin and Charlie Day
Distributed by: Universal Pictures
MPAA Rating: PG-13
Running time: 111 minutes

4DX: 4 out of 5 stars
Film: 3 out of 5 stars

Since I was a kid, I have always been a fan of the Kaiju films like “Godzilla”, “Ultraman” and even “Power Rangers”. I loved the first “Pacific Rim”, especially in 3D. The action sequences are outstanding, especially in the water. Unfortunately, my excitement for the sequel has been next to nothing. I blame it on the studio because I am not the only one either. My friend told me because I posted about seeing it, it was the first time he even knew it was coming out (and he LOVED the first film). I see that as a missed opportunity for this film. I called this one a bomb before even seeing it based on how it was being marketed and I wasn’t wrong. Listen, I want to see more films like this in theaters, so I definitely say support it otherwise films “Godzilla” and “King Kong” won’t get made but I would have just liked a little more effort in this film and less trying to setup a new “Cinematic Universe” to make a new franchise.

I was excited to find out that “Pacific Rim: Uprising” was playing in the 4DX experience in one of its ten theaters across the country in Orlando FL. This made the movie feel like a two hour rollercoaster ride. I didn’t love the movie but with the 4DX experience I like it more overall. The fog is my only complaint since it was just one machine in the front of the theater and didn’t add anything. The motion chairs were moving non-stop and I was exhausted by the end of the movie for sure! If you get a chance to see this film and have a way to see it in 4DX I would definitely recommend that experience for sure.

Here is the long winded official premise: John Boyega stars as the rebellious Jake Pentecost, a once-promising Jaeger pilot whose legendary father gave his life to secure humanity’s victory against the monstrous “Kaiju.” Jake has since abandoned his training only to become caught up in a criminal underworld. But when an even more unstoppable threat is unleashed to tear through our cities and bring the world to its knees, he is given one last chance to live up to his father’s legacy by his estranged sister, Mako Mori (Rinko Kikuchi)-who is leading a brave new generation of pilots that have grown up in the shadow of war. As they seek justice for the fallen, their only hope is to unite together in a global uprising against the forces of extinction. Jake is joined by gifted rival pilot Lambert (Scott Eastwood) and 15-year-old Jaeger hacker Amara (Cailee Spaeny), as the heroes of the PPDC become the only family he has left. Rising up to become the most powerful defense force to ever walk the earth, they will set course for a spectacular all-new adventure on a towering scale.

John Boyega gets a chance to shine outside of the “Star Wars” gang but ends up getting lost in the confusion and doesn’t really have a strong arc and no love interest, which I felt he needed. I do not understand why people like Scott Eastwood. I think he is a terrible actor and I roll my eyes every time he is on the screen trying to be tough. there are three returning talent from the first film including Rinko Kikuchi (for 10 seconds), Burn Gorman and Charlie Day. I really dug having Burn and Charlie day back! They made the film more enjoyable to watch. I didn’t like how the rest of the cast was made up with teenagers, it felt like I was watching a Nickelodeon

“Pacific Rim: Uprising” was definitely a different kind of movie from the first. The first kicked off in an epic battle and then filled you in as time went on and I dug that. The sequel starts explaining way too much in the beginning and takes a while to get going. The sequel doesn’t have the heart or the visuals to match the first film but ends up being a fun popcorn flick. Just keep your expectations low and don’t expect it to be like the first film. If their is more films, I want more Charlie Day for sure! Luckily for the 4FX experience which really enhanced my experience watching this film, I ended up leaving the theater excited for more to come. I can’t help it I am sucker for giant monsters and robots!!

4DX Theater Experience Review “Transformers: The Last Knight”

Directed by: Michael Bay
Starring: Mark Wahlberg, Josh Duhamel, Stanley Tucci, Anthony Hopkins
Distributed by: Paramount Pictures
Release date
Running time: 149 minutes

4DX Score: 4 out of 5 stars
Film Score: 3 out of 5 stars

Recently, I have been contacted to see if I wanted to review one of this Summer’s movies the brand new 4DX Theater Experience. This is not your typical movie going experience. Here is an example of the effects that you can expect going into a 4DX screening: water, air, bubbles, fog, scents, motion seats with vibration and ticklers as well as environmental effects like rain, storming, snow, wind and lightning. This seemed like the ONLY way to see a film like “Transformers”. Currently, I believe there are only a handful of these theaters across the United States, one of them luckily being in Orlando FL at the Regal Pointe Orlando Stadium. If you are in the area or are lucky enough to have one local to you, I would highly recommend checking out this experience at least once.

“Transformers: The Last Knight” is the fifth installment in the Hasbro toy inspired franchise. Honestly, each film sort of blends together. The plots in the past films have been convoluted and confused and this film is no different. Is it entertaining…YES! Will I remember it and be able to distinguish between it and the previous four films….NOPE! Just pure popcorn Summer fun. If you dig explosions and robots, then it worth checking out then for a mindless two and half hours. But let me tell you one thing, seeing this film in 4DX definitely made it a better experience for sure and if you are thinking about seeing a 4DX film, “Transformers” is a great example to test it out with.

If you have ever visited Disney World parks and went on the attractions “Honey I Shrunk the Audience”, “Captain EO” or “Mickey’s PhilharMagic”, this 4DX Theater Experience reminded me of all of those combined together and more. I have to admit though, by the end of the two and a half hour movie of “Transformers”, I was exhausted. This is definitely not for those people that just want to kick their feet up and escape into a movie. This is a workout. You are almost constantly moving the whole time, some times subtle movement and sometimes huge motion jumps, twists and turns…I definitely saw a popcorn bag get tossed during my screening. Personally, I wouldn’t want to see every new film that comes out like this but I can definitely see it being an event to do every once in a while right the right film comes out. If you are curious though about this do not wait, definitely check it out because it is definitely an experience.

Tickets on Sale Now for “Hardcore Henry: The Ultimate Fan Experience” in Select U.S. Cinemas

Hardcore Henry is one of the most unflinchingly original wild-rides to hit the big screen in a long time: You remember nothing. Mainly because you’ve just been brought back from the dead by your wife (Haley Bennett). She tells you that your name is Henry. Five minutes later, you are being shot at, your wife has been kidnapped and you should probably go get her back. Who’s got her? His name’s Akan (Danila Kozlovsky); he’s a powerful warlord with an army of mercenaries, and a plan for world domination. You’re also in an unfamiliar city of Moscow, and everyone wants you dead. Everyone except for a mysterious British fellow called Jimmy (Sharlto Copley). He may be on your side, but you aren’t sure. If you can survive the insanity, and solve the mystery, you might just discover your purpose and the truth behind your identity. Good luck, Henry. You’re likely going to need it…

Date: Thursday, April 7
Time: 7:00 p.m. (local time)
Run Time: 2 hours (approximate)

Ticketing: Tickets are available by clicking on the orange “Buy Tickets” button. If online ticketing is not available for your location, you can purchase your tickets by visiting the box office at your local participating movie theater.

Special Fathom Features: Experience an exclusive Q&A with the director and everyone who attends the event will receive a free limited edition comic book.

Fathom Events and STX Entertainment are excited to present Hardcore Henry: The Ultimate Fan Experience in select movie theatres nationwideon Thursday, April 7 for a special one-night event.

Be one of the first to see the epic thrill-ride Hardcore Henry before it’s theatrical release, experience an exclusive Q&A with the director and receive a free limited edition comic book.

As an added bonus, fans have the ability to submit questions which may be answered during the Q&A. Tweet your questions using the hashtag #HardcoreFans on or before March 13.

Told in first person point of view, from the eyes of Henry himself, this wild action adventure is one of the first of its kind. Having just been resurrected from death with no memory, Henry must discover his identity and save his wife from a warlord with a plan to bio-engineer soldiers.

Syfy and Philips Announce First Ever Transmedia Lighting Experience for Sharknado and Sharknado 2 In-home Screening

NOW SHARKNADO WILL LIGHT UP AMERICA’S HOMES!

SYFY AND PHILIPS ANNOUNCE FIRST EVER TRANSMEDIA LIGHTING EXPERIENCE FOR SHARKNADO AND SHARKNADO 2 IN-HOME SCREENING

NEW YORK – July 24 2014 – Just in time for the world premiere of Sharknado 2: The Second One, Syfy and Philips, the global leader in lighting, today announced the first ever television content-focused immersive lighting experience with the pairing of the Syfy Sync second screen app and the Philips Hue connected lighting system for the home.

Fans who pair the Syfy Sync app for iPhone and iPad and Philips Hue bulbs while watching Sharknado and Sharknado 2 on Wednesday, July 30 (at 7PM and 9PM EST, respectively) will be treated to a specially designed “light track” – a visual soundtrack – that adds a heightened layer to the movie-watching experience in addition to the existing content and social experience Syfy Sync provides. However, fans of Syfy and Hue can get warmed up starting today as the app works immediately with the original Sharknado, available on a variety of platforms.

When combined, the app will detect audio cues from the Sharknado movies and translate them to the Web-enabled Hue system. Fans will of then be enveloped in the onscreen action through ambient lighting effects as the bulbs change colors to reflect the increasingly stormy weather conditions, chainsaw-induced shark carnage and more throughout the two movies.

In making the announcement, Matthew Chiavelli, Vice President, Digital Media & Strategy, said: “With a fan base that’s always looking for new ways to interact with our content, we’re happy to give them an innovative way take it to the next level. Syfy Sync has always been a multiplatform play, and now the action makes the leap from the television and second screen to an even more immersive Sharknado viewing experience with Philips Hue.”

“We continue to look at new and innovative ways that we can create unique lighting experiences for the home and working with Syfy, we can give Sharknado viewers a whole new way to experience television,” said Arif Quraishi, Vice President of Marketing, Sales and Strategy at Philips. “Unlike other lighting offerings that are limited to proprietary systems, we can work through third-party apps like Syfy Sync, and allow the lighting to react to Sharknado content, taking a further bite out of the audience’s imagination. Together we are making television history.”

To download Syfy Sync:
http://bit.ly/1b2l7um

To purchase Philips Hue:
http://meethue.com/

About Royal Philips:
Royal Philips (NYSE: PHG, AEX: PHIA) is a diversified health and well-being company, focused on improving people’s lives through meaningful innovation in the areas of Healthcare, Consumer Lifestyle and Lighting. Headquartered in the Netherlands, Philips posted 2013 sales of EUR 23.3 billion and employs approximately 113,000 employees with sales and services in more than 100 countries. The company is a leader in cardiac care, acute care and home healthcare, energy efficient lighting solutions and new lighting applications, as well as male shaving and grooming and oral healthcare. News from Philips is located at www.philips.com/newscenter.

About Syfy:
Syfy is a media destination for imagination-based entertainment. With year round acclaimed original series, events, blockbuster movies, classic science fiction and fantasy programming, a dynamic Web site (www.Syfy.com), and a portfolio of adjacent business (Syfy Ventures), Syfy is a passport to limitless possibilities. Originally launched in 1992 as SCI FI Channel, and currently in 96 million homes, Syfy is a network of NBCUniversal, one of the world’s leading media and entertainment companies. NBCUniversal is a subsidiary of Comcast Corporation. (Syfy. Imagine Greater.)

Experience Summer Like A Local And Enjoy A Little Something Extra With Loews Hotels & Resorts

Get the most out of everyone’s favorite travel season with value-driven deals on local attractions and a special perk simply for booking early

NEW YORKMay 20, 2014 /PRNewswire/ — Summer will be here before you know it and over way too soon. This year get the most out of everyone’s favorite travel season with Experience Summer Like a Local from Loews Hotels & Resorts. Offering great rates and value-driven deals on local attractions, the new seasonal promotion makes an exciting start to a memorable getaway for couples, families and friends. And if that weren’t enough, guests can get a complimentary perk on top by booking their stay early through a One-Day Cyber Sale on May 21, 2014.

From design to decor, dining to diversions, the distinctive charms of Loews Hotels are drawn from the locations around them. Experience Summer Like a Local offers guests great deals on local attractions that just can’t be experienced elsewhere. For instance:

  • At Loews Hotel Annapolis enjoy a “Day at the Bay” on the sparkling Chesapeake with a special 20% discount from Schooner Woodwind Sailing, plus two sun visors, complimentary breakfast for two, suntan lotion and lip balm, and complimentary parking for one car.
  • At Loews Coronado Bay Resort overlooking the Pacific, get a Summer Sweet Deal with two adult tickets for a day of fun at the San Diego Zoo, Legoland or Seaworld. Don’t forget to bring the kids!
  • Linger longer at Loews Hotel Vogue, Montreal and enjoy a Summer Sweet Deal for a 3rd night at 50% off, plus an Insider Guide to Montreal and $450 worth of deals on popular attractions and restaurants. See if you can use ’em.

Take summer vacation over the top with the One-Day Cyber Sale from Loews Hotels & Resorts onWednesday, May 21, 2014. Book the Experience Summer Like a Local package or Loews Best Available Rate online at www.loewshotels.com and take your pick of a special summer perk with choice of one:

  • $25 Parking Credit
  • Two Summer Cocktails Daily
  • Complimentary Premium Plus Wi-Fi
  • Late Check Out

Summer rates at Loews Hotels from $199 per night. For more information or to arrange your stay, call 1-800-23-LOEWS or visit www.loewshotels.com.

Offer available through www.loewshotels.com and bookable at 12:01 AM EST May 21st, 2014, through3:00 AM EST May 22nd, 2014, for reservations through September 30th, 2014; subject to availability and blackout dates. Not available at Loews Portofino Bay Hotel, Loews Royal Pacific Resort, Hard Rock Hotel in Orlando or Universal’s Cabana Bay Beach Resort. Taxes and gratuities not included. Not applicable to groups, negotiated or third-party rates. Cannot be combined with any other promotional offer other than those listed below. Not applicable to existing reservations. Only one perk is available per room. Premium Plus Internet is the premium Internet option that, outside of this offer, incurs a fee. Premium Plus Internet offers the ability to connect up to 8 devices per room. The $25 parking credit is per stay (not per day or per person) and applies to valet or self-parking charges at the selected hotel only. Late checkout is defined as up to three hours past the official checkout time per the selected hotel’s policy. Must be 21 years of age or older to receive alcohol, non-alcoholic beverages may be substituted on request. Hotel follows responsible beverage service principles and reserves the right at any time to deny service of alcohol to patrons. Offer excludes premium wines and liquors. Additional terms & conditions apply to each property’s local offer. Please see specific terms that apply on the landing page for each offer.

Loews Hotels & Resorts
Headquartered in New York City, Loews Hotels & Resorts owns and/or operates 20 hotels and resorts in the U.S. and Canada, including the newly acquired Loews Madison Hotel located in the heart ofWashington at the epicenter of legendary D.C. landmarks and the Loews Boston Hotel, one of Boston’spreeminent historic buildings, situated on the corner of Berkeley and Stuart Streets. Located in major city centers and resort destinations in North America from coast to coast, the Loews portfolio features one-of-a-kind properties that go beyond Four Diamond standards to delight guests with a supremely comfortable, uniquely local and vibrant travel experience. For reservations or more information about Loews Hotels & Resorts, call 1-800-23-LOEWS or visit: www.loewshotels.com.

Like Loews Hotels & Resorts on Facebook: www.facebook.com/LoewsHotels
Follow Loews Hotels & Resorts on Twitter: www.twitter.com/loews_hotels
Watch Loews Hotels & Resorts on YouTube: www.youtube.com/LoewsHotels
Read our Wish You Were Here Blog at www.loewshotelsblog.com

SOURCE Loews Hotels & Resorts

Gene Hoglan talks about his “The Gene Hoglan Experience” shows

Gene Hoglan has been a drummer in the music business since the early 80’s performing with groups such as Dark Angel, Death and more recently Testament and the Brendon Small helmed Dethklok. When not performing with one of his my projects Gene partakes in drum clinics around the world. He newest run of performances are being billed under the name “The Gene Hoglan Experience” which combines clinic style demonstrations and impromptu question and answer sessions. Media Mikes spoke with Gene recently about the shows and all of the other cool projects he has going on.

Adam Lawton: What led to the idea of doing “The Gene Hoglan Experience” shows?
Gene Hoglan: Whenever I go out and do clinics they always end up being at drum stores and a majority of the people who attend those are drummers however, I have had people come up to me afterwards and tell me they aren’t a drummer but love my work and find me interesting. I started to think about ways to reach a larger audience and make it less drummer exclusive. I also was thinking of it as a way to revolutionize the clinic industry by taking these types of performances to larger/different venues. I wanted this to be something more than just drums or drumming. I have a lot more than drums in me so I am always open to talking about whatever and answering all the questions people may have. I tested this idea out in Canada and it went really well. From there I decided that once I had some time in my schedule I would try and do more of these. This is a way for me to get out there without having to hit up my drum companies up for crap loads of money. I’m getting to do this kind of independently which is pretty cool. I get to interact with the fans and give them a chance to have a one on one moment with me. I like to talk and play drums so this is really great.

AL: What type of feedback did you get from that first show?
GH: People were coming up to me telling me that they had never seen anything like this before. Musicians were saying this is much more different than your typical clinic. Things have been super positive. I know I am not perfect but I think I have a good enough grasp on this type of thing to make it fun an enjoyable for those who attend. Things have sort of evolved over time. I did one show where I was asked if I could play a Strapping Young Lad song however I didn’t have any of that material with me. Someone from the crowd said they had the CD in their car and could go get it. They brought it in and we did it! Things have just evolved in to this really cool interactive and engaging thing. I love people having their faces rocked off followed by smiles.

AL: Being that the show is live and unscripted is there ever any nervousness on your part?
GH: It’s a very unprepared type of scenario. There are a few prepared elements like what songs I may be performing that night but even that can change. I don’t get nervous. My fiancé was with me while I was prepping for a clinic in Vancouver and she told me that she couldn’t believe how little I prepare. She’s is a musician herself and said she would need flash cards and things like that. I just have my own thing going on and she couldn’t believe how well it ended up going. I usually have a couple points in my head that I try to get to but if it doesn’t happen I try to make sure my content is so strong that it makes up for it. I want to make sure that I and everyone else have a great time.

AL: Have there been any talks about filming these upcoming run of dates?
GH: We haven’t really talked about that part of things yet. The main reason I will be out doing these shows is that I have a new DVD coming out. I’m not sure as to which show I would actually choose to film though because each night is going to be different. I don’t think I’m really up for filming all of the shows and then putting them together into one. Mainly I don’t want to wear the same shirt every night. (Laughs)

AL: In the past few years you have begun working with Brendon Small of “Metalocalypse” and Dethklok. How did that partnership come about?
GH: Brendon is one of the best guys I have ever worked with. I mean that and am not just trying to put my lips to his butt. I will tell him that to his face. From the start Brendon has always been a really easy going and fun guy. I think that also comes across in his work ethic. Brendon is a guy that always has my back. Having never dealt with a network before he has always been there backing me. The support has just been great. How things started was one day I got a call out of the blue from Brendon asking if I would be interested in recording a soundtrack album for season one of the show. I had seen the show before but wasn’t really aware of what it was. The show has killer music and it was something I was definitely interested in. We were a two man project for quite awhile until we started touring and added Brian Beller on bass and Mike Keneally on guitar. Things have just gotten cooler with each album we work on together. I love Brendon to death.

AL: Being a guy who often has multiple projects going on at once. How do you adjust your playing/mindset to fit all the things you are working on?
GH: I suppose it has to do with the fact that I am always willing to forego the “Gene Hoglan’s Style” for what is best for the band. If I am playing with someone like Death which calls for a pretty technical, busy style while the stuff I did with Strapping Young Lad wasn’t as busy but needed to be very powerful. I am very willing to suppress my own style in an effort to do what’s best for the band. I filled in on drums with Otep for a few shows and they were already mid-tour. They were used to how there drummer did things so I had to try and fit to what was already being done. When I filled in with Anthrax I sat behind Charlie for a few shows with a video camera so I could make sure I learned exactly what he was doing. Charlie doesn’t play some of the material the way it was recorded 25 years the same now. I wanted to make sure that I was able to capture that and not just learn the album versions of the songs. I was blessed with sort of a steel trap mind when it comes to learning material and I think that has been somewhat beneficial as well.

AL: What other projects do you currently have in the works?
GH: Well the new DVD I have coming out is titled “The Atomic Clock: The Clock Strikes Two”. That is going to feature a lot of the stuff I have been doing at my clinics. For this release I was able to get the licenses for the songs I am playing. Everything from Death, Testament and Meldrum are going to be on there. The new DVD has a lot of depth to it and I have tried to improve on everything included. Testament has a show coming up in August with Iron Maiden and a bunch of other great acts. After that Testament will be out with Lamb of God and Killswitch Engage and from there have already started making tour plans for 2014. Then recently I received a text from Brendon stating he has completed the next Dethklok album so I am sure we will be getting involved with that real soon. I am hoping to do some Death To All shows which is a tribute to Death performances as well. Lastly I have been recording a ton of new stuff with my guitarist Laura Christine who is just amazing. Hopefully we will have material out this coming year. I am really stoked about all of this stuff. It’s going to be great and is something I wished for. I wanted to play drums for a living and I am getting to do that.

Keanu Reeves and Mark Mann talk about working together on “Generation Um…”

Keanu Reeves is known for his films in franchises like “The Matrix” and “Bill & Ted”. In this film “Generation Um…”, he plays a much different role within this character piece. Mark Mann is the writer and director on the film, which is his feature film debut. Media Mikes had a chance to chat with Keanu and Mark on the film and what we can expect.

Click here for our interview with Adelaide Clemens & Bojana Novakovic

Mike Gencarelli: Mark, tell us how did “Generation Um…” come about for you?
Mark Mann: Alison Palmer (Bourke), the producer on the project, gave Keanu the script to look at as a friend at first. He liked it and said he wanted to meet with me. We had a coffee and it was sort of monumental coffee. We riffed creatively for a bit and found out that we got along well. We shared visions for the characters and the story. So after that he decided to do the film, which was great. He was perfect for the role. So we went out and made a movie [laughs].

MG: Keanu, what was it that really drew you to the role of John?
Keanu Reeves: I liked so many things about the character. What stuck out for me was the writing, the structure, the humor, the humanity and the way the story was told. With John, in particular, I had a great sympathy for him. He felt like a character that was hyper-aware. He was trapped in his past, maybe with his confidence or trapped in his life.  He was seeking a connection, a friendship or something that we might think of as simple but is fundamental to life. I felt like a lot of people could relate to him. I also felt that since this took place in New York and it was more personal and I liked that.

MG: Any challenges with shooting in New York?
KR: [laughs]
MM: I had no issues whatsoever [laughs]. New York is a great place to shoot. Just because you are shooting there doesn’t mean that it is going to behave any different than New York does. It seems to add attention to the frame. We were using New York in a somewhat unorthodox fashion, with shooting in the park, running down streets, driving over bridges and staring at trains. In general, I think that New York tolerates you if you shine at the end of it all.

MG: Keanu, this is a real change from some of your past action driven films; was it a challenge taking on this character piece?
KR: I wouldn’t really say a challenge but more of an opportunity. What struck me was getting a chance to actually shoot the footage that John does in the film. That was a very unique situation for me and it was something that I really appreciated and enjoyed. The trust that Mark put into me was great. He was like “Ok Keanu…go shoot!” We shot on Super 16 with a lot of wide angle lenses and fixed perspectives. So we get to learn about John through the camera but also get to learn about the other characters from John’s perspective. For me that was very unique, fulfilling and a fun opportunity.
MM: What was interesting about that, as well, you will notice in the film that he bundles that into the character. You watch the character developing his own feelings through the camera itself.

MG: Mark, what was your biggest challenge taking on your first feature film?
MM: I would have to say just making a film. It is an impossible pursuit. Once you start getting into it there are so many things going on at the same time. It is like you are one with the inside of your head with little tentacles extending out sort of taking of the form of all these different people all handling various tasks. It is impossible…
KR: No it’s not [laughs].
MM: Yeah it was easy. It was like butter [laughs].

MG: Keanu, I loved the chemistry between you and your leading ladies, Adelaide Clemens and Bojana Novakovic. What did you do to form that bond between the three of you for this film?
KR: We started with the audition process. Mark went on search for Violet and Mia. Luckily, I was a part of that process. He asked me to videotape the actresses that came in to meet on the project. It happened with both Bojana and Addy that there was a nice simpatico between us and we got along right away. They were interesting and loved the material. As me moved forward in rehearsal and just hanging out, everyone seemed to be on the same page. We just got along really great, so that was really cool. Mark really let me in and be a part of the creative process and I really appreciated that as well.
MM: That was part of the fun though. The film ultimately is what happens between the people making the film. It was just great. Having Keanu, Adelaide and Bojana together work through it all in rehearsals and then turning on the camera and watching them do it was amazing.

MG: Mark, you also wrote the screenplay. How much did it change throughout the production?
MM: The script was god. It was bible. It didn’t change.
KR: Urgh…writers and directors, they say that the script is god. [laughs]
MM: [laughs] If you asked me the question as a director, I might have a different answer but in terms of writing you have to have a moment when you can be a writer. That is what writers do.
KR: It was just really a great script. One could think that it was improvised since the words are just so great.
MM: There are also a lot of moments of silence in the movie and I had to try to push it into direction. But there were these long moments with Keanu, Bojana and Adelaide where they are just there and they are doing what they are doing. That is not something you can write. It was very exciting to see them take the implications that I wrote and then completely bring it to this magically level where they were and just embodied these characters.
KR: Human animal footage [laughs].

Experience James Cameron’s Epic Masterpiece Like Never Before when “Titanic” Comes Home for the First Time Ever on Blu-ray 2D and 3D

EXPERIENCE JAMES CAMERON’S EPIC MASTERPIECE  LIKE NEVER BEFORE WHEN TITANIC COMES HOME FOR THE FIRST TIME EVER ON BLU-RAY™ 2D AND 3D

Spectacular Love Story Debuts On Blu-ray Worldwide September 10, 2012 With More Than 2 ½ Hours of New Special Feature Content

 LOS ANGELES, CA (May 31, 2012) – The two billion-dollar box office phenomenon and winner of 11 Academy Awards®,TITANIC, makes its highly anticipated debut on Blu-ray 2D and 3D on September 10, 2012 from Paramount Home Media Distribution and Twentieth Century Fox Home Entertainment.  Available in high definition for the first time ever, James Cameron’s timeless and unforgettable tour de force will be presented in stunning 2D and 3D, providing a cinematic in-home experience of TITANIC like never before.  Marking 101 years ago today that the RMS Titanic was launched into the Belfast Lough, film fans worldwide can now pre-order the epic love story on Blu-ray 2D or Blu-ray 3D™ with participating online retailers.

James Cameron commented, “Blu-ray extends TITANIC’s immersive 3D theatrical experience into audiences’ homes, where their living room becomes the backdrop for big spectacular environments and intense action, as well as profoundly intimate human moments, allowing generations of fans—new and old—to truly become part of the movie like never before.”

Presented in a four-disc 2D Blu-ray/DVD combo pack with Digital Copy or, for the ultimate experience in fully immersive 3D, in a four-disc Blu-ray 3D and 2D combo pack with Digital Copy, this high-definition presentation of TITANIC is a must have for film fans’ home media collections.  Both sets feature more than 2 ½ hours of new bonus footage never-before-released on disc, including a fascinating in-depth exploration of the film with James Cameron, as well as documentary footage produced by National Geographic with James Cameron that brings the world’s leading RMS Titanic experts together to solve the lingering mysteries of why and how the “unsinkable” ship sank.

The sets also boast previously released special features including 30 deleted scenes, over 60 behind-the-scenes featurettes, a look at the groundbreaking visual effects, over 2,000 photos, three commentaries and much, much more.  TITANIC will also be available in a two-disc DVD set with deleted scenes and, for the first time ever, for digital download.

Starring Leonardo DiCaprio and Kate Winslet in the roles that would make them global stars, TITANIC tells the story of the epic romance between two star-crossed lovers set against the backdrop of the legendary and ill-fated maiden voyage of the “ship of dreams.”

Four-Disc Blu-ray/DVD Combo Pack

The TITANIC Blu-ray containing the feature film is presented in 1080p high definition with English 5.1 DTS-HD Master Audio, English 2.0 Dolby Digital, French 5.1 Dolby Digital, Spanish 5.1 Dolby Digital and English Audio Description and English, English SDH, French and Spanish subtitles.  The DVDs are presented in widescreen enhanced for 16:9 televisions with English 5.1 Dolby Digital, English 2.0 Dolby Digital, French 5.1 Dolby Digital, Spanish 5.1 Dolby Digital and English Audio Description and English, French and Spanish subtitles.

The disc breakdown is as follows:

Disc 1 (Blu-ray):

  • Feature film in high definition
  • Commentary by director James Cameron
  • Cast and Crew Commentary
  • Historical Commentary by Don Lynch and Ken Marschall

Disc 2 (DVD):

  • Feature film in standard definition (Part 1)

Disc 3 (DVD):

  • Feature film in standard definition (Part 2)

Disc 4 (Blu-ray):

  • Documentaries

o   Reflections on Titanic—NEW!

o   Titanic: The Final Word with James Cameron—NEW!

  • Deleted Scenes with commentary by James Cameron
  • Behind-the-Scenes Featurettes
  • Construction Timelapse
  • Deep Dive Presentation—Narrated by James Cameron
  • $200,000,001A Ship’s Odyssey—the Titanic Crew Video
  • Videomatics
  • Visual Effects
  • Music Video—“My Heart Will Go On” by Celine Dion
  • Trailers
  • TV Spots
  • Still Galleries

o   Titanic Scriptment by James Cameron

o   Storyboard Sequences

o   Production Artwork

o   Photographs

o   Ken Marshall’s Painting Gallery

o   Concept Posters and One Sheets

o   By the Numbers

o   Bibliography

  • Titanic Parodies

o   MTV’s 1998 Movie Awards skit

o   Saturday Night Live skit

o   Titanic in 30 Seconds

Four-Disc Blu-ray 3D Combo Pack

The TITANIC Blu-ray 3D and Blu-ray containing the feature film are presented in 1080p high definition with English 5.1 DTS-HD Master Audio, English 2.0 Dolby Digital, French 5.1 Dolby Digital, Spanish 5.1 Dolby Digital and English Audio Description and English, English SDH, French and Spanish subtitles.  The disc breakdown is as follows:

Disc 1 (Blu-ray 3D):

  • Feature film in high definition and 3D (Part 1)

Disc 2 (Blu-ray 3D):

  • Feature film in high definition and 3D (Part 2)

Disc 3 (Blu-ray):

  • Feature film in high definition
  • Commentary by director James Cameron
  • Cast and Crew Commentary
  • Historical Commentary by Don Lynch and Ken Marschall

Disc 4 (Blu-ray):

  • Documentaries

o   Reflections on Titanic—NEW!

o   Titanic: The Final Word with James Cameron—NEW!

  • Deleted Scenes with commentary by James Cameron
  • Behind-the-Scenes Featurettes
  • Construction Timelapse
  • Deep Dive Presentation—Narrated by James Cameron
  • $200,000,001A Ship’s Odyssey—the Titanic Crew Video
  • Videomatics
  • Visual Effects
  • Music Video—“My Heart Will Go On” by Celine Dion
  • Trailers
  • TV Spots
  • Still Galleries

o   Titanic Scriptment by James Cameron

o   Storyboard Sequences

o   Production Artwork

o   Photographs

o   Ken Marshall’s Painting Gallery

o   Concept Posters and One Sheets

o   By the Numbers

o   Bibliography

  • Titanic Parodies

o   MTV’s 1998 Movie Awards skit

o   Saturday Night Live skit

o   Titanic in 30 Seconds

Two-Disc DVD

The TITANIC DVDs are presented in widescreen enhanced for 16:9 televisions with English 5.1 Dolby Digital, English 2.0 Dolby Digital, French 5.1 Dolby Digital, Spanish 5.1 Dolby Digital and English Audio Description and English, French and Spanish subtitles.  The disc breakdown is as follows:

Disc 1 (DVD):

  • Feature film in standard definition (Part 1)

Disc 2 (DVD):

  • Feature film in standard definition (Part 2)
  • Deleted Scenes with commentary by James Cameron

Digital Download

The digital download includes the following:

  • Feature film in standard or high definition
  • Deleted Scenes
  • Still Galleries

About Paramount Home Media Distribution

Paramount Home Media Distribution (PHMD) is part of Paramount Pictures Corporation (PPC), a global producer and distributor of filmed entertainment.  PPC is a unit of Viacom (NASDAQ: VIA, VIAB), a leading content company with prominent and respected film, television and digital entertainment brands.  The PHMD division oversees PPC’s home entertainment, digital and television distribution activities worldwide. The division is responsible for the sales, marketing and distribution of home entertainment content on behalf of Paramount Pictures, Paramount Animation, Paramount Vantage, Paramount Classics, Insurge Pictures, MTV, Nickelodeon, Comedy Central, CBS and PBS and for providing home entertainment fulfillment services for DreamWorks Animation Home Entertainment.  PHMD additionally manages global licensing of studio content and distribution across worldwide digital and television distribution platforms including online, mobile and portable devices and emerging technologies.

About Twentieth Century Fox Home Entertainment

Twentieth Century Fox Home Entertainment, LLC (TCFHE) is a recognized global industry leader and a subsidiary of Twentieth Century Fox Film Corporation, a News Corporation company. Representing 75 years of innovative and award-winning filmmaking from Twentieth Century Fox, TCFHE is the worldwide marketing, sales and distribution company for all Fox film and television programming, acquisitions and original productions on DVD, Blu-ray Disc, Digital Copy, Video On Demand and Digital Download. The company also releases all products globally for MGM Home Entertainment. Each year TCFHE introduces hundreds of new and newly enhanced products, which it services to retail outlets from mass merchants and warehouse clubs to specialty stores and e-commerce throughout the world.

 

TITANIC

Street date:                 September 10, 2012

Runtime:                      194 minutes

SRP:                             $44.99 (Four-Disc Blu-ray 3D combo pack)

$39.99 (Four-Disc Blu-ray/DVD combo pack)

$29.99 (Two-Disc DVD)

U.S. Rating:                 PG-13 for disaster related peril and violence, nudity, sensuality and brief language

Canadian Rating:         14A for frightening scenes, coarse language, violence, disturbing content