The Miseducation of Cameron Post Red Carpet Interviews

Desiree Ahkavan’s new film, The Miseducation of Cameron Post hits theaters this week after both winning the Grand Jury prize for drama at Sundance Film Fest and screening at the Tribeca Film Festival earlier this year. The film, an adaptation of Emily Danforth’s 2012 novel, stars Chloe Grace Moretz as Cameron Post, a high school girl who is caught making out with another girl on prom night. Cameron is subsequently sent to a religious gay “conversion therapy” camp called God’s Promise by her conservative American family. From there, Ahkavan’s touching and honest film follows Cameron as she encounters her fellow campers coping with their sexualities and the camp counselors (Jennifer Ehle and John Gallagher Jr.) who may have their own inner reservations about the work that they do. It is a challenging film for its young stars that’s deftly led by Moretz with support from Sasha Lane, and Forrest Goodluck.
I got to speak with some of this talented cast at their Tribeca red carpet premiere about how they came to be in the film and the message believers in these controversial camps could take away from Cameron’s story.

Tony winner John Gallagher Jr. plays Reverend Rick, himself a former camper turned youth counselor who outwardly is a God’s Promise “success” story but clearly deals with suppressing his true emotions.

Lauren Damon: Your character has so much going on under the surface, how did you work on playing him?

John Gallagher Jr: Yeah! A lot of it was just trusting the script and trusting Desiree. You know it was a very complicated role who’s living right on the edge of something. And I just really looked to [Desiree] to kind of be the leader and to be my guide throughout all of it. And to just try and kind of tell the truth as we had deemed it fit for the film.

LD: What was the most difficult part of working on this?

JGJ: I think, you know living on that edge…of like really preaching something that, I think you start seeing throughout the film, that the character may or may not actually even believe. And that kind of crisis of faith, and that doubt and that second guessing. And really like the guilt that comes with that…I think he’s a guy that really is struggling to do what he believes is the right thing. And I think that his awakening in the film is that he doesn’t know what the right thing is.

LD: I watched this in an admittedly liberal NYC screening room and I think the reactions to a lot of what happens in the camp was that it was ridiculous, but both in the film, and in these real places, it’s really not…

JGJ: It’s not. There is no spin on it, that is their earnest belief. And as I can’t even fathom having that kind of opinion on matters of sexuality, that’s a very real thing. And people do have those exact kind of beliefs.

LD: What would you tell someone with these kinds of beliefs if you could speak to them?

JGJ: Gosh. I would tell them to watch this film and think it over a second time, you know?

Quinn Shephard plays the small but crucial role of Coley Taylor, the girlfriend who Moretz’s Cameron is caught with before she is sent for conversion.

LD: Your role isn’t big in terms of screentime, but it’s so pivotal to the film, how was it to know that going in?

Quinn Shephard: It was great! I was very happy to be a part of the film in any way possible. I keep saying, I just wanted to be a part of the movie because I really believed in it. I think it’s one of the best scripts I’ve ever read and I wanted to be in it. And I’m excited that I got to play this role.

LD: As in actress in this film, if you could get a message to people who believe these camps are effective, what would it be?

QS: Oh man. I think it’s like…I mean, look–Some people I think have a lot of fears and they justify things like conversion camps out of fears. But I think that if you come at something from a place of love, it’s impossible to justify. I think if you’re really someone who feels love in your heart and you challenge yourself to love someone who’s gay and imagine…putting that person through that and telling them that they’re not okay, I think it’s impossible to justify. I think people get caught up in their rhetoric and they get up in religious justification. But when it’s human and it’s in front of you, it’s very hard to agree with, you know? And I think that if somebody sits through this movie who believes in it, they’ll change their mind.

LD: How did you go about preparing for the intimate scenes between Coley and Cameron?

QS: I read the book, I read about my character…I’m somebody who’s very comfortable with who I am and it was just about creating a place in myself where I was very happy for what was happening, but at the same time very ashamed of it. I think that’s who [COLEY] is, she’s that duality and that was a difficult place for me to go. It was a very sad place. But it was something that was very important to her. There was a fragility to the relationship because she is not okay with it yet. And then I think as far as the actual intimacy of the scene, we just went into it was a sense of humor. And Desiree was very accommodating and she made us very comfortable and we had fun.

The Miseducation of Cameron Post opens in New York on August 3rd and expands to LA and other cities on August 10th.

Power Trip Announce North American Tour w/ Sheer Mag, Fury, and Red Death

POWER TRIP Announces North American Tour
With Sheer Mag, Fury, And Red Death As Support

(photo by Kevin Estrada)

POWER TRIP has announced a new set of headlining North American tour dates late this spring with Sheer Mag, Fury, and Red Death. Check below for a full list of dates, and watch for more tour dates to be announced. All tickets for the new headlining dates are now on sale HERE. See a newly unleashed tour trailer HERE.

POWER TRIP’s breakthrough album, Nightmare Logic, earned an overwhelming amount of love across the board, ranging in praise from The New Yorker to a Pitchfork’s Best New Music, to countless best-of/year-end lists The band was awarded the Best Metal Album Of The Year from Loudwire and song placement in the WWE.

Find POWER TRIP’s Nightmare Logic at YouTube HERE, Spotify HERE, iTunes HERE, and at the Southern Lord US store HERE and European store HERE.

POWER TRIP Tour Dates:
1/13/2018 Phoenix Theater – Petaluma, CA
1/18/2018 Astra Kulturhaus – Berlin, DE ^
1/19/2018 Tivoli Ronda – Utrecht, NL ^
1/20/2018 Eventwerk – Dresden, DE ^
1/21/2018 Backstage – Munich, DE ^
1/22/2018 Komplex – Zurich, CH ^
1/23/2018 Schlachtof – Wiesbaden, DE ^
1/24/2018 Sono – Brno, CZ ^
1/25/2018 Stadthalle – Lichtenfels, DE ^
1/26/2018 De Mast – Torhout, BE ^
1/27/2018 Turbinenhalle – Oberhausen, DE ^
1/28/2018 02 Forum Kentish Town – London, UK ^
3/11/2018 Live Music Hall – Koln, DE #
3/12/2018 Turbinenhalle 2 – Oberhausen, DE #
3/14/2018 KB – Malmo, SE #
3/15/2018 Fryshuset Klubben – Stockholm, SE #
3/16/2018 Rockefeller – Oslo, NO #
3/17/2018 Arbis – Norrkoping, SE #
3/19/2018 Cable Factory – Helsinki, FI #
3/21/2018 Pustervik – Gothenburg, SE #
3/22/2018 Pumpehuset – Copenhagen, DK #
3/23/2018 Huxleys – Berlin, DE #
3/24/2018 Täubchenthal – Leipzig, DE #
3/25/2018 Progresja – Warsaw, PL #
3/27/2018 Roxy – Prague, CZ #
3/28/2018 Majestic – Bratislava, SK #
3/29/2018 Durer Kert – Budapest, HU #
3/30/2018 Simm City – Vienna, AU #
4/01/2018 Tvornica – Zagreb, HR #
4/02/2018 Kino Siska – Ljubljana, SI #
4/03/2018 Phenomenon – Novara, IT #
4/04/2018 Komplex – Zurich, CH #
4/06/2018 Sala Santana – Bilbao, ES #
4/07/2018 Teatro Barcelo – Madrid, ES #
4/08/2018 Sala Razzmatazz – Barcelona, ES #
4/10/2018 L’Usine – Geneva, CH #
4/11/2018 Tonhalle – Munich, DE #
4/12/2018 LKA-Longhorn – Stuttgart, DE #
4/13/2018 Bataclan – Paris, FR #
4/15/2018 Trix – Antwerp, BE #
4/16/2018 O2 Academy – Bristol, UK @
4/17/2018 O2 Academy – Birmingham, UK @
4/19/2018 O2 Academy – Glasgow, UK @
4/20/2018 Academy – London, UK @
4/21/2018 Academy Brixton – London, UK @
4/27/2018 Welcome to Rockville Festival – Jacksonville, FL [info]
4/28/2018 Fort Rock – Sunrise, FL
4/30/2018 The Masquerade – Atlanta, GA *
5/01/2018 Saturn – Birmingham, AL *
5/04/2018 Carolina Rebellion – Concord, NC
5/05/2018 Broadberry – Richmond, VA *
5/06/2018 Spirit – Pittsburgh, PA *
5/07/2018 Union Transfer – Philadelphia, PA *
5/08/2018 The Black Cat – Washington, DC *
5/10/2018 Elsewhere – Brooklyn, NY *
5/11/2018 Paradise – Boston, MA *
5/12/2018 The Lost Horizon – Syracuse, NY *
5/13/2018 Lee’s Palace – Toronto, ON *
5/15/2018 El Club – Detroit, MI *
5/16/2018 Reggie’s – Chicago, IL *
5/18-20/2018 Rock On The Range – Columbus, OH [info]
5/19/2018 The Empty Bottle – Chicago, IL *
5/20/2018 Fine Line – Minneapolis, MN *
5/21/2018 The Park Theatre – Winnipeg, MB *
5/23/2018 Louis’ – Saskatoon, SK *
5/24/2018 The Starlite Room – Edmonton, AB *
5/25/2018 Dickens Pub – Calgary, AB *
5/27/2018 Modified Ghost Festival III – Vancouver, BC [info]
5/28/2018 Neumo’s – Seattle, WA *
5/29/2018 Hawthorne Theater – Portland, OR *
5/31/2018 Great American Music Hall – San Francisco, CA *
6/01/2018 The Ritz – San Jose, CA *
6/02/2018 The Regent – Los Angeles, CA !
6/03/2018 Soma – San Diego, CA *
6/04/2018 Club Red – Mesa, AZ *
6/05/2018 Launchpad – Albuquerque, NM !
6/07/2018 The Mohawk – Austin, TX !
^ w/ Hatebreed, Madball, Terror, Broken Teeth, Insanity Alert
# w/ Trivium, Venom Prison
@ w/ Trivium, Venom Prison, Code Orange
* w/ Sheer Mag, Fury and Red Death
! w/ Sheer Mag and Red Death

CD Review: Cannibal Corpse “Red Before Black”

“Red Before Black”
Cannibal Corpse
Metal Blade Records
Producer: Erik Rutan
Tracks: 12

Our Score: 4 out of 5 stars

Cannibal Corpse returns with their 14th full-length studio album titled “Red Before Black” an album which clearly shows the soon-to-be thirty-year death metal veterans are unstoppable! The album serves to not only to reiterate this but to once more raise the stakes, making it very clear who sets the standards when it comes to compelling music this is equally brutal and complex. With 2017 seeing a slew of stunning new releases from death metal’s old guard “Red Before Black” stands strong and is a fitting statement for a band whose career spans almost three decades.

Not for the faint of heart “Red Before Black” is the latest offering from death metal heavy weights Cannibal Corpse and much like previous releases from the Buffalo, NY natives the band burst out of the gate going directly for your face! Tracks like album opener “Only One Will Die” and “Heads Shoveled Off” feature bombastic blast beats and thunderous double bass courtesy of Mr. Paul Mazurkiewicz while tracks like “Code of the Slashers” and “Shedding My Human Skin” feature some of the most guttural, demon summoning growls by George “Corpsegrinder” Fisher. With the guitars and bass acting as the proverbial cherry on top of each of the albums 12 tracks “Red Before Black” is one of the bands strongest releases in the past 5 years.

Chances are if you are already reading this then you what Cannibal Corpse is about and are familiar with their sound. If not but, you are looking for some balls to the wall death metal then do yourself a favor and grab a copy of “Red Before Black”! As a band progresses through their career often times sounds and styles change but in the case of Cannibal Corpse the band’s latest offering is equally if not more aggressive than the band’s debut, proving that just because a band gets older doesn’t mean they have to slow down or soften up.

Track Listing:
1.) Only One Will Die
2.) Red Before Black
3.) Code of the Slashers
4.) Shedding My Human Skin
5.) Remaimed
6.) Firestorm Vengeance
7.) Heads Shoveled Off
8.) Corpus Delicti
9.) Scavenger Consuming Death
10.) In The Midst of Ruin
11.) Destroyed Without a Trace
12.) Hideous Ichor

Blu-ray Review “The Red Turtle”

Directors: Michael Dudok De Wit
Rated: PG
Studio: Sony Pictures Home Entertainment
Release Date: May 2, 2017
Run Time: 81 minutes

Film: 3.5 out of 5 stars
Blu-ray: 4 out of 5 stars
Extras: 2.5 out of 5 stars

I am a huge fan of Studio Ghibli, “The Red Turtle” marks a change for the company. This is not an original film from them but instead a French film acquisition. It is also a wordless film yet also a beautiful film. Put it this way, I watched this film with my 5 year old and she was interested the whole time, even without words. The story was beautiful and the animation was gorgeous. Not your typical Ghibli film but definitely a different one and quite enjoyable.

Official Premise: Marking the much-anticipated return of Studio Ghibli, this masterfully animated fantasy film tells the story of a man shipwrecked at sea who becomes stranded on a beautiful but desolate island. He learns to live in isolation, seemingly tormented in his efforts to escape the island by a giant red turtle. Miraculously, he soon comes upon a young woman also lost at sea and they create a family together.

The 1080p transfer looks solid. The animation is well represented here and the colors are vibrant. The DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 works perfectly with the films score and sound effects, which gracefully drive the film along. The special features are a little light. There are two featurettes going behind-the-scenes including “The Birth of The Red Turtle” and “The Secrets of The Red Turtle” as well as a AFI Fest Q&A with Director Michael Dudok de Wit. This is a solid interview with a lot of great details though.

 

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2015 Tribeca Film Festival Red Carpet Interviews

The 14th annual Tribeca Film Fest was held from April 15th to 26th in lower Manhattan. Media Mikes had the opportunity to speak to many of the creative minds behind the films making their premieres over the course of the Fest. You can read my coverage by clicking on any of the posters below and check back to see more additions:

About the Tribeca Film Festival:

The Tribeca Film Festival helps filmmakers reach the broadest possible audience, enabling the international film community and general public to experience the power of cinema and promote New York City as a major filmmaking center. It is well known for being a diverse international film festival that supports emerging and established directors.

Founded by Robert De Niro, Jane Rosenthal, and Craig Hatkoff in 2001, following the attacks on the World Trade Center, to spur the economic and cultural revitalization of the lower Manhattan district through an annual celebration of film, music, and culture, the Festival brings the industry and community together around storytelling.

The Tribeca Film Festival has screened more than 1,600 films from more than 80 countries since its first edition in 2002. Since inception, it has attracted an international audience of more than 4.9 million attendees, and has generated an estimated $900 million in economic activity for New York City.

 

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RiffTrax Live! discuss “The Room” on the Tribeca Red Carpet

RiffTrax Live! took the stage at the Tribeca Film Festival for their first ever New York show on April 17th. The crew consisted of the talent behind classic TV show Mystery Science Theater 3000, Mike J. Nelson, Kevin Murphy and Bill Corbett. Although MST3K went off the air officially in 1999, their particular brand of humor, consisting of running commentary on classic terrible B-movies got a new life in the form of RiffTrax. With RiffTrax, the guys have shed their MST3K alter-egos (Bill as Crow T Robot, Kevin as Tom Servo and Mike as…Mike) and have broadened their scope to include live shows and downloadable tracks riffing on mainstream studio films. For their Tribeca audience, the guys presented Tommy Wiseau’s 2003 “disasterpiece” The Room. I caught up with the trio on their red carpet. In true RiffTrax fashion while Mike posed in front of photographers, Kevin and Bill stalled off ­to the side to riff on his technique before all heading over for a hilarious chat about what they do:

Lauren Damon: So…why The Room?

Mike Lawrence: Have you seen it?
LD: Yep
Mike: Yeah. I mean it’s the weirdest movie ever, it has to be done.
Bill Corbett: It is the Citizen Kane of bad movies.

 

LD: Have you guys ever met Tommy Wiseau, does he know what you’re up to?
Mike: Oh yes.
Bill: Yeah, he has to agree to this, believe it or not.

 

LD: Does he think the movie is good?
Kevin Murphy: I think he was confused at first. He didn’t know exactly—He thought we were stealing his film at first—
Bill: He thought we were stealing his soul!
Kevin: But then he realized we were just having fun with it and he already knows people have fun with the film.
Bill: Yeah
Kevin: He’s accepted it and he’s embraced it so—
Bill: He decided to call it a comedy.
Mike: He’s a good sport about it.
Kevin: He’s a very good sport about it.

 

LD: And you’ll be doing this again live?
Kevin: We’re doing it live, May 6th, Rifftrax.com for all the information
Bill: Across the land!

 

LD: And you’ll have new material on this same film every time?
Bill: Yeah, this will probably change, yeah. This is very different from the one we recorded before, yeah, it’ll change a lot.

 

LD: Can you also talk about how with Rifftrax you switched from Mystery Science 3000 riffing on B-movies to now these downloadable tracks for mainstream movies?
Mike: Well we’ve never had a chance to do them, since we can’t get the rights to them, and the technology allowed it was just like there’s a whole bunch of movies out there that are opened up by doing it that way.
Kevin: It helped us to get some of these big, more recent films for our live shows. Like we’re doing Sharknado 2 in July. Yeah and then what’s that big blockbuster? Santa and The Ice Cream Bunny. [laughing]
Bill: George Lucas’s, I believe?
Kevin: [laughing] I think so, yes, in December.

 

LD: I enjoy downloading your tracks on my favorite movies. I have all your Marvel universe ones, because I’ve seen them a ton of times and I like to get a ‘new take’ on them.
Kevin: Yeah [all laughing] I’m glad we can provide that for you!
Bill: If we can do NOTHING else, it’s talk about the Hulk’s schlong.

 

LD: Do you miss your Mystery Science Theatre 3000 alter-egos, your robots?
Bill: I miss being Mike. I played Mike, you realize that don’t you?
Kevin: It’s amazing.
Mike: Make up. Hours in the chair.
Kevin: And Mike was Crow but he wasn’t a puppet, it was make up. It was just all make up. No, I had the opportunity to bring one of the show puppets home after the show was over and I said I don’t want that thing around my house. It would be like Anthony Hopkins in Magic [in presumably a demon puppet voice] “Chop your head off Kevin, CHOP YOUR HEAD OFF!”
Bill: KEVIN! KEEEEEVIN!

 

 

When you started MST3K almost 30 years ago did you ever think you’d be doing anything similar all this time later?
Kevin: No
Bill: I thought I’d work as like a bus boy or a porter or be, I don’t know on the Bowery.
Mike: I was sure I’d be back at TGIFridays. I still remember all the codes for extra broccoli.
Bill: Something to fall back on.
Kevin: We kinda were in job transitions and it seemed like fun so we did it and boom, we’re still here.
Bill: Well At this point we have no other discernible skill set. So we kind of have to do it.
Kevin: Yeah we kind of boned ourselves here!

 

LD: Do you go to see ‘real movies’? Are you in MS3TK mode, how  are you about people talking during films?
All: Oh yeah.
Bill: By all means, oh yeah. I hate people who talk in the movie theater! I’m really a prig and a tight-ass when it comes to that.
Kevin: “SHUSH!!” It’s true.

 

LD: Do you think, with rights issues, there will ever be a return to the MS3TK characters or that format?
Kevin: Really not up to us because we’re not really controlling—or owners of the company in any way. So…
Bill: I think they will be resurrected on the last days of EARTH. Like…the living and the dead…
Kevin: All the immortal souls.
Bill: Definitely that!

 

LD: Because it continues to have such life with dvds…
Kevin: Well, wait for the rapture, we’ll see what happens!
Bill: And this movie [The Room] will be the thing that kicks off the rapture.
Mike: Luckily you don’t have to wait very long at all.

Fortunately, the presentation at Tribeca did not bring about the rapture–although I can’t make any promises for the May 6th nationwide broadcast–but it was a hell of a good time. Not only were audiences treated to The Room, but the gang pre-gamed with a black and white children’s safety film, “Live and Learn” that featured more lessons than you can shake a dangerous pointed stick at. My face hurt from laughing and the crowd gave the trio a standing O.

 

Tickets for the May 6th broadcast of Rifftrax Live: The Room are available via Fathom Events

Win a Blu-ray of “Dead Snow 2: Red vs. Dead” [ENDED]


To celebrate the release of “Dead Snow 2: Red vs. Dead”, we are happy to be giving away THREE Blu-rays of the film. If you want to win this great prizes, please leave us a comment below or send us an email with your favorite zombie film. This giveaway will remain open until January 2nd at Noon, Eastern Time. This is open to our readers in US and Canada only. One entry per person, per household. All other entries will be considered invalid. Media Mikes will randomly select winners. Winners will be alerted via email.

Martin (Vegar Hoel) hasn’t had the best vacation. He accidentally killed his girlfriend with an axe. He cut his own arm off with a chainsaw. And his friends STILL got devoured by a battalion of Nazi Zombies. This morning, he woke up in a hospital bed with a new arm – but it’s a super-powered Zombie arm that wants to kill him, and anything else it can reach. Martin’s PISSED. And with the help of his new Zombie Squad pals (Martin Starr, Jocelyn DeBoer, Ingrid Haas), he’s gonna deliver some payback to Colonel Herzog and his precious Nazi gold – by raising an undead army of his own.

 

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  • CD Review: Red Dragon Cartel “Red Dragon Cartel”

    Red Dragon Cartel
    “Red Dragon Cartel”
    Frontier Records
    Produced by: Ronnie Mancuso, Jake E. Lee
    Tracks: 10

    Our Score: 3 out of 5 stars

    Red Dragon Cartel is the newest rock/metal group formed by former Ozzy Osbourne/Badlands guitarist Jake E. Lee. Along with Lee the group features Ronnie Mancuso on bass, drummer Jonas Fairly and singer D.J. Smith. Together the group creates a sound that blurs the lines between progressive rock, heavy metal and industrial synth pop. The self-titled debut is being released via Frontier Records and features 10 original tracks produced by Mancuso and Lee and Executive Produced by Kevin Churko (Five Finger Death Punch, In This Moment, Ozzy Osbourne).

    Having been a subscriber of Guitar World magazine for as long as I can remember I certainly wasn’t stranger to the work Jake E. Lee. From Ozzy’s “Bark at the Moon” and “Ultimate Sin” albums to his recent appearances on VH1’s “That Metal Show” he was a player that was always on my radar. When it was announced he was going to be coming out with a new project I was certainly down for checking it out. “Red Dragon Cartel” is a unique blend of styles that cover a wide spectrum of hard rock and metal. The albums opening track “Deceived” shares a striking resemblance to “Bark at the Moon” while forging new ground both musically and vocally.

    The track “Feeder” is a catchy rocker that is the first of several tracks to feature guest appearances with this one featuring Robin Zander of Cheap Trick fame. Other guest performances on the album include Maria Brink of In This Moment, former Iron Maiden singer Paul Di’Anno and former Pantera/current Kill Devil Hill bassist Rex Brown to name just a few. Don’t let the long list of guest musicians fool you in to thinking that Red Dragon Cartel can’t stand on their own as singer D.J. Smith and the rest of the members of the band all can certainly hold their as the guest performances act more like the icing on the cake.

    Though I found portions of the album sounding a bit dated there was nothing on the album that made me want to stop listening. I think the members of Red Dragon Cartel have made a solid record that showcases a number of different styles and talents and those things alone are makes this album worth checking out.

    Track Listing:
    1.) Deceived
    2.) Shout It Out
    3.) Feeder (feat. Robin Zander)
    4.) Fall from the Sky
    5.) Wasted
    6.) Slave
    7.) Big Mouth (feat. Maria Brink)
    8.) War Machine
    9.) Redeem Me
    10.) Exquisite Tenderness

    Blu-ray Review “Red 2”

    Actors: Bruce Willis, Helen Mirren, John Malkovich, Anthony Hopkins, Mary-Louise Parker
    Directors: Dean Parisot
    Rated: PG-13 (Parental Guidance Suggested)
    Studio: Summit Inc/Lionsgate
    Release Date: November 26, 2013
    Run Time: 116 minutes

    Film: 2.5 out of 5 stars
    Extras” 2 out of 5 stars

    When “Red” came out, I thought that it was cool that they were adapting a comic book for the older folks. The cast is superb including Bruce Willis (“Die Hard”), John Malkovich (“Burn After Reading”), Mary-Louise Parker (Showtime’s “Weeds”), with Anthony Hopkins (“Thor”) and Helen Mirren (“The Queen”) but too bad, the film cannot capture that same thrill as the first. In fact “Red 2” just feels like a re-do of the first one, the fun aspect feels too old…no pun. The action/comedy is still present but lacks the sharpness of the first film. This is a sequel that no one was asking for, so unless you are a die-hard of the first film I would pass this one and just remember how cool the first film was.

    Official Premise: Retired black-ops CIA agent Frank Moses (Willis) and his team set out on a global quest to track down a missing, next-generation lethal device that can change the balance of world power. To succeed, they’ll need to survive an army of relentless assassins, ruthless terrorists and power-crazed government officials, all eager to get their hands on the technologically advanced super weapon. Outgunned and outmanned, they have only their cunning wits, old-school skills and each other to rely on as they try to save the world – and stay alive in the process.

    Despite the film itself, “Red 2” packs an amazing punch in terms of audio video. The 1080p transfer with an aspect ratio of 2.40:1 delivers the action and also showcases the very beautiful shooting locations including Paris and London. Same goes for the DTS-HD Master Audio 7.1, which is wall-shaking good and works perfect with each action sequence. In terms of special features though we are back to disappointing. “The Red 2 Experience” is a decent collection of featurettes looking behind-the-scenes. Lastly there are a few short deleted scenes and a gag reel included.

    Film Review “Red 2”

    Starring: Bruce Willis, John Malkovich and Mary-Louise Parker
    Directed by: Dean Parisot
    Rated: PG-13
    Running Time: 1 hr 56 mins
    Summit Entertainment

    Our Score: 3 out of 5 stars

    The loveable sociopaths of the CIA retirement home are back with some fresh new villains and killing machines accompanying them for the ride. This sequel to 2010’s “RED” once again showcases the elderly handing out some ass kickings, though with less charm and wit than the original.

    Frank Moses (Bruce Willis) is trying out the normal life. Shopping at CostCo and trying to find the latest gadget to put in his home. His girlfriend Sarah Ross (Mary-Louise Parker), who is still coming down from the adrenaline rush of the events in “RED”, is not as enthusiastic about settling down and making dinner. As the film starts, the paranoid Marvin Boggs (John Malkovich) springs up, trying to sway Frank back into the spy game. As much as Frank says no, he really doesn’t have much of a choice because, as in the first film, he’s a marked man. The cold war era has come back to haunt him. A recently released document shows a portable nuclear device is missing and everyone’s pointing their fingers at Frank and Marvin.

    As in “RED,” the film is peppered with both well known and B-list actors to supply the excitement. Jack Horton (Neal MacDonough) is tasked with capturing Frank, but realizes even a squad of machine gun wielding men can’t stop an unarmed Bruce Willis. Also hot on the trail of Frank is Han Jo-Bae (Lee Byung-hun), who has a personal vendetta against him. During Frank and Marvin’s journey to find out more about this lost WMD, they track down a diabolical wine connoisseur who is known simply as The Frog (David Thewlis). The trio also accidentally bump into one of Frank’s former flames, Miranda (Catherine Zeta-Jones). We’re also treated to the best character in the movie, Edward Bradley (Anthony Hopkins). He’s a delusional former scientist who might just hold the whereabouts to the weapon.

    During “RED” the characters traversed the United States. This sequel takes us first class on a wild trip around the world that touches down multiple times in three continents. It’s a visual step up, but our time in each city is short lived. Before we’re given enough time to chew on some of the scenery or digest any fresh details to the story, we’re back on the plane to another exotic location to have more exposition crammed in our gullets. When the flames die down and the guns run out of ammo, the movie hits the brakes hard.

    The returning cast lack that spark of excitement and that innate taste of chaos they seemed to bathe in with “RED”. The first was obviously an introductory piece to this fantastic world of geriatric spies and assassins. Without any graphic novel to really fall back on, the writers (the Hoeber brothers) pretty much had free range to do whatever they want. So, they opted for a bland imitation of the first script. They had a chance to scratch away at the surface and find some nuggets of fun, smiling insanity. Instead the characters act out hollow versions of their previous selves when their guns are in their holsters. You’ll find yourself re-adjusting in your seat when Frank wonders aloud if he can keep Sarah safe from this horrible predicament. Yes you can. Now give her a gun.

    Even though this isn’t a step-up from the original, it’s still great to see the trio of Frank, Martin and Sarah bicker and quip at each during a gun battle. It’s also still fun that every character introduction or entrance into a scene comes with screaming, bullet hole ridden furniture and shattered glass. It was a blast at the theater, but I couldn’t shake the feeling that these characters deserved better. So, if you’re looking for the same chuckles, violent eye candy and seeing some of your favorite aging actors embody James Bond or Rambo, give “RED 2” a look.

    Tribeca Film Festival 2013 – Red Carpet Coverage & Film Reviews

    The 12th annual Tribeca Film Festival is being held from April 17-28 in New York City. The festival’s mission is to help filmmakers reach the broadest possible audience, enable the international film community and general public to experience the power of cinema and promote New York City as a major filmmaking center. Tribeca Film Festival is well known for being a diverse international film festival that supports emerging and established directors. The Festival has screened over 1400 films from over 80 countries since its first festival in 2002. Since its founding, it has attracted an international audience of more than 4 million attendees and has generated an estimated $750 million in economic activity for New York City.

    Check out the following link for the 2013 film schedule

    A Single Shot: The writer and director join stars Sam Rockwell, Kelly Reilly and Heather Lind at the thriller’s TFF premiere. Rockwell stars as John Moon, a man caught in a tense cat-and-mouse chase after stealing money from a woman he accidentally shot while hunting in rural West Virginia. Check out our review here!

    Lil Bub and Friendz : Documents the rise of cat videos on the internet as both a subculture and in some cases, a potential goldmine. Bub and owner Mike Bridavsky joined doc directors Andy Capper and Eisner on TFF’s red carpet.

    Trust Me: Clark Gregg’s second directorial effort after 2008’s Choke finds the actor also starring as Howard Holloway a down on his luck agent to child stars. The film’s premiere at Tribeca included Gregg, newcomer Saxon Sharbino, and co-stars Felicity Huffman (“Desperate Housewives”) and Paul Sparks (“Boardwalk Empire”).

    V/H/S 2: Follow-up to last year horror film, which is an anthology film that is comprised of horror shorts by different directors strung loosely together by a framing story. Click here for our review.

    What Richard Did: Director Lenny Abrahamson joined star Jack Reynor to talk about their Irish drama which made it’s Stateside debut at Tribeca. Check out our review here!

    Click each poster below for our red carpet coverage from the following films:

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    “The Man With the Iron Fists” ROE Tickets Giveaway! [ENDED]

    THIS GIVEAWAY HAS ENDED AND WINNERS HAVE BEEN NOTIFIED VIA EMAIL. PLEASE CHECK BACK EACH WEEK FOR NEW GIVEAWAYS!

    If you would like to enter for a chance to win free passes to see THE MAN WITH THE IRON FISTS during its run of engagement (AKA ROE), please leave a comment below with your favorite martial arts film. Winners will be chosen on a RANDOM BASIS on November 2nd. ONLY ONE ENTRY PER PERSON/PER HOUSEHOLD PLEASE! OTHERWISE ALL ENTRIES WILL BE DISREGARDED. The winners will be will notified via email if chosen to win. Good luck and thanks for supporting MediaMikes.com

    Quentin Tarantino presents THE MAN WITH THE IRON FISTS, an action-adventure inspired by kung-fu classics as interpreted by his longtime collaborators RZA and Eli Roth.  Making his debut as a big-screen director, co-writer and leading man, RZA—alongside an exciting international cast led by Russell Crowe and Lucy Liu—tells the epic story of warriors, assassins and a lone outsider hero who all descend on one fabled village in China for a winner-take-all battle for a fortune in gold.

    Blending astonishing martial-arts sequences from some of the masters of this world with the signature vision he brings as the leader of the Wu-Tang Clan and as one of hip-hop’s most dominant figures of the past two decades, RZA embarks upon his most ambitious, stylized and thrilling project to date.

    Joining Crowe, RZA and Liu in the cast are Rick Yune, Jamie Chung, Cung Le, Dave Bautista, Byron Mann, Daniel Wu and Pam Grier.

    Universal Pictures will release THE MAN WITH THE IRON FISTS on Friday, November 2, 2012.

    DVD Review “Red Dust (1932)”

    Cast: Clark Gable, Jean Harlow, Gene Raymond, Mary Astor
    Director: Victor Fleming
    Distributed by: Warner Archive
    MPAA Rating: Not Rated
    Running Time: 83 minutes

    Our Score: 4 out of 5 stars

    Prior to receiving this review DVD, I have never seen this fantastic film before. But I surely know the names of Victor Fleming, Clark Gable and Jean Harlow and I would never say no to check out some of their work.  This film was originally released in 1932.  The film looks absolutely amazing for a film that..get ready…80 years old.  Wow, that is absolutely amazing.  The film is already so sharp and well done.  Films are not made like this any more and this one is such a classic.

    Thanks to Warner Archive, yet again for finally releasing this film on DVD.  It is not just a drop off on DVD either, this film is newly remastered. Boy, does it look amazing for an 80 year old film.  It is also beautiful presented in 4X3 full frame and its original aspect ratio of 1.37:1.  Warner also delivers the original mono track, which suites the film perfectly. Lastly, there is a trailer included on the disc as well. If you are looking for a classic MGM studio film on a rainy day, I highly recommend picking this up.

    Premise: From the first moment wisecracking Vantine (Harlow) takes refuge on the plantation run by Carson (Gable), he sizes her up as an easy mark for his virile charm. But when a research engineer (Gene Raymond) and his elegant wife, Barbara (Mary Astor), appear on the scene, Carson falls hard for the beautiful Barbara, discarding Vantine as nothing more than a “cute little trick.” The steamy rivalry between the women soon boils into a jealous rage – with violent consequences. Oscar®-winning Best Director Victor Fleming (Gone with the Wind, 1939) deftly orchestrates the script’s tense drama and hilarious erotic comedy, helping Gable and Harlow turn Red Dust into pure gold.

     

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    Film Review “Red Lights”

    Directed by: Rodrigo Cortés
    Starring: Robert De Niro, Sigourney Weaver, Cillian Murphy, Joely Richardson, Elizabeth Olsen, Toby Jones, Leonardo Sbaraglia
    Distributed by: Millennium Entertainment
    MPAA Rating: R
    Running time: 113 minutes

    Our Score: 4 out of 5 stars

    Hold on a sec, a paranormal thriller/horror film with Robert De Niro, Sigourney Weaver and Cillian Murphy? Where do I sign up? This little film has flown under my radar this summer with big budget superhero movies taken the spotlight. “Red Lights” deserves some major attention.  It is extremely well-done and really delivers from the moment it starts through the its shocking ending. I am a big fan of Rodrigo Cortés, especially after his film “Buried”. He is really able to do a lot in a film with not much. Cillian Murphy also gives an amazing performance and really carries this film.

    The film follows psychologist and paranormal investigator, Margaret Matheson, (Weaver), and her physicist assistant, Tom Buckley (Murphy) as they aim to disprove the paranormal experiences with science and technology. When they get involved with investigating a famous psychic, Simon Silver (De Niro) things get a little too hot and they find themselves in deeper than they expected. Is Silver a true psychic medium or just another fraud?

    “Red Lights” does a great job of blending its horror, thriller and drama aspects all together to one entertaining film. It has some good spooks but isn’t full blown horror. With the televisions and cinemas being flooded with films about paranormal activities and ghost huntings, this will probably be filed in with the rest but is actually able to stand on its own. It is not only well directed and executed but also packed with impressive performances, I highly recommend checking this film out.

    Blu-ray Review “Red Scorpion”

    Directed by: Joseph Zito
    Starring: Dolph Lundgren, M. Emmet Walsh, Al White, T.P. McKenna, Carmen Argenziano
    Distributed by: Synapse Films
    Release Date: June 12th, 2012
    MPAA Rating: Not Rated
    Running time: 106 minutes

    Blu-ray: 4 out of 5 stars
    Film: 4 out of 5 stars
    Extras: 3.5 out of 5 stars

    Synapse Films is the company behind this amazing new Blu-ray release for “Red Scorpion”, the action-packed controversial cult classic. This isn’t just your typical Blu-ray release, it is a very impressive 2K high-definition transfer featuring the uncensored version with new footage never before seen in the US. Dolph Lundgren really nails this performance along with M. Emmet Walsh, who is also great. The action in the film is so over-the-top and contains some amazing gore special effects from Tom Savini. If you are fan of 80’s action, this is a must purchase.

    Dolph Lundgren plays Nikolai, a Russian Spetznaz agent, who is assigned to murder the leader of an African rebel movement. When he is sees what is going on with the guerrilla faction, he is sympathetic to their cause and falls through on the assassination plans. Due to this he is caught by the rebels and left for dead in the desert. He survives and seeks revenge against his former employers.

    The Blu-ray presentation is incredible. Synapse has not let us down yet with their releases. The 1080p transfer is just amazing and also includes its original aspect ratio of 1.85:1. The audio tracks included are DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 and DTS-HD Master Audio 2.0, which both are very impressive. This release also comes in a two-disc set, which a Blu-ray and a DVD of the film. Also like all Synapse films, there is a great liner notes included on the Making of “Red Scorpion” by Jérémie Damoiseau. There is also a reversible cover included, I had a hard time deciding which I wanted to display.

    The special features are also very impressive. There is a fun and informative audio commentary with Director Joseph Zito and Mondo Digital’s Nathaniel Thompson. “Hath No Fury – Dolph Lundgren and the Road to Red Scorpion” is a basic behind-the-scenes featurette, which goes into the film’s production. “Assignment: Africa” is a decent video interview with Producer Jack Abramoff. “Scorpion Tales” is another video interview with Make-Up Effects Artist Tom Savini. There is also some really cool rare On-Set Behind-the-Scenes footage, great insight and trip back in time. There is an animated still gallery included. Lastly there is Theatrical Trailer and TV Spots included.