Tagged: Las Vegas

Summit Reveals 2014 Slate

Summit Entertainment has released details on their 2014 slate of films including some that appeal to our readers. Check out the details:

THE LEGEND OF HERCULESTHE LEGEND OF HERCULES – January 10

In the epic origin story THE LEGEND OF HERCULES, Kellan Lutz stars as the mythical Greek hero – the son of Zeus, a half-god, half-man blessed with extraordinary strength.  Betrayed by his stepfather, the King, and exiled and sold into slavery because of a forbidden love, Hercules must use his formidable powers to fight his way back to his rightful kingdom.  Through harrowing battles and gladiator-arena death matches, Hercules embarks on a legendary odyssey to overthrow the King and restore peace to the land.

DIVERGENTDIVERGENT – March 21

In a future world where people are divided into distinct factions based on their personalities, Tris Prior is warned she is Divergent and will never fit into any one group.  When she discovers a conspiracy to destroy all Divergents, she must find out what makes being Divergent so dangerous before it’s too late.
DRAFT DAYDRAFT DAY – April 11

On the day of the NFL Draft, general manager Sonny Weaver (Costner) has the opportunity to save football in Cleveland when he trades for the number one pick. He must quickly decide what he’s willing to sacrifice in pursuit of perfection as the lines between his personal and professional life become blurred on a life-changing day for a few hundred young men with dreams of playing in the NFL.

STEP UP: ALL IN

STEP UP ALL IN – July 25

In the next exciting chapter of the international phenomenon STEP UP, all-stars from previous installments come together in glittering Las Vegas, battling for a victory that could define their dreams and their careers.

CHILD 44CHILD 44 – Fall 2014

Based on the first novel in author Tom Rob Smith’s best-selling trilogy, CHILD 44 tells the story of a man fighting to reclaim his humanity from a system that requires him to sacrifice it in order to survive.

Martha Thomases: Las Vegas vs. San Diego

While the rest of the pop culture community prepares for Comic-Con International in San Diego, I’m in Las Vegas. Since I don’t gamble, it has been an interesting sociological experience for me. And also, the spa at my hotel is awesome.

I have been to Vegas four times now, and to SDCC about fifteen times. The two share more than one might think. Both are really crowded at all hours. Both mostly take place indoors, but if you need to go outside, you probably won’t get rained on. There’s a lot of noise about every little thing, so that you lose all sense of proportion.

And both count on dazzling you with enough glitz and glamor that you won’t notice how much you’re being hustled.

Still, I’m having a great time on The Strip, and I never need to go to Comic-Con again. What’s the difference?

Although things have improved somewhat in recent years, the city of San Diego doesn’t feel welcoming to me. I went once for a library convention, and that was much more pleasant. As a Comic-Con visitor, I feel like the city regards me as a pig, a beast to tolerate because I spend money. The convention brings in celebrities, whom I’m sure are treated well (if only because they have people on the payroll to guarantee it), but me? I’m the rube paying $4 for a bottle of water.

The water in my Vegas hotel room mini-bar is $8. And I don’t drink it. But you know what? A lovely woman comes by twice a day to ask if I want anything. She is thrilled when I have a request for her, even if it’s just for more free shampoo.

At Comic-Con, I have to stand in line for hours to see a panel, which I may not get to see because thousands of other people want to see the same panel. In Vegas, if the hot new Batman slot machine is being used, there are more around the corner, or down the street.

At Comic-Con, if I don’t make a dinner reservation by five, I can forget about eating anyplace where I can sit down. In Vegas, there are world-class restaurants (many outposts of places I love in New York) stacked up on top of each other.

I was a little afraid to come to Vegas as an older, single woman, afraid I would feel unattractive and unworthy. The hotel at which I’m staying, the Cosmopolitan, goes out of its way to make women feel welcome. Everyone who works there is super-friendly and helpful. In San Diego, there are, instead, lots of jokes about how unsexy geeks can be. True, lots of those jokes come from us geeks. I don’t think that kind of self-hatred would be funny anyplace else.

My friend Pennie used to live here, back in the days when the Mob were the new guys in town. She says that there is a tradition of service here because the populace knows that’s how they keep their jobs. San Diego, on the other hand, is a city with more than just a hospitality industry. I don’t mean to say that San Diego is rude (because, as a New Yorker, how would I know?), but they don’t make me feel like my needs are a priority.

There has been talk for years of moving Comic-Con to Las Vegas. I don’t think it would work. This city is too expensive. It would be a lovely idea, however, to move Las Vegas to Comic-Con.

SATURDAY: Marc Alan Fishman

 

 

Bridesmaids

It was inevitable that after numerous guy-centric raunchfests, the women needed their turn to be gross, disgusting, and funny. With Judd Apatow, the current master of the form, aboard, one of the summer’s brightest hits turned out to be the fresh Bridesmaids. Out now on DVD from Universal Home Entertainment, the film comes in two forms: the theatrical release and an unrated version that packs in six more minutes of stuff.

Often, the film felt like it took the guys’ template and followed it so if there was barfing and pooping, then the women had to do it, too. Interestingly, though, despite the numerous sex scenes, there was scarcely any nudity, male or female, which tends to be a must for this genre. Clearly written by women, Wiig and Annie Mumolo, it shows women at their very best and very worst. Unlike the boy-centric offerings, this film lets its scenes play out, giving Wiig and the others a chance to really work each moment.

What this film has over the boys’ fare, is a story with true emotional core even though it is often stretched beyond credulity. Annie (Kristen Wiig) has been having it tough. Her cake business failed and she’s stuck in a dead-end job, with no boyfriend, and is deeply depressed. Despite having a circle of friends, none seem aware of how badly off Annie is. When her best friend Lillian (Maya Rudolph) gets engaged, Annie is asked to be the Maid of Honor and the rest of the film follows her pathetic attempts to plan the festivities while trying to bond with her fellow bridesmaids. All the while, the cattiness that marks female relationships is amplified, notably the rivalry between Annie and the pretty but cold Helen (Rose Byrne).

Annie’s life spirals down and then out of control so she is totally blind to the one good thing to enter her life, a friendly, romantically interested state trooper (Chris O’Dowd). The set pieces such as the failed airplane trip to Las Vegas or the over-the-top bridal shower let the ensemble have free reign and most make the most of it, notably Melissa McCarthy as the rude, crude, overweight and undersexed pal.

Obviously, true love and true friendship will win out in the end and getting there is certainly entertaining but the film is not without its faults. Several of the women are little more than two-dimensional types to round things out without adding much in the way of depth. Everyone’s blindness to Annie’s precarious financial situation is annoying (even if it results in the gross-out moments early on). Still, the bonds between real-life friends Wiig and Rudolph shine through and happily ground the film in a satisfying way.

The leads are well supported by the cast and it’s great to have one more opportunity to see the late, great Jill Clayburgh play Annie’s mother.

The film’s transfer is sharp and having both versions is a nice treat. The rest of the extras consist of the usually hodgepodge of Featurettes. The gag reel is nowhere near as funny as you would expect and the deleted, extended and alternate scenes show the value of having an editor. Noteworthy is a disastrous date between Annie and a guy (Paul Rudd) who gives men a bad name. The commentary from the filmmakers and cast isn’t bad with some interesting insights tossed in. (The Blu-ray, not reviewed, comes with additional features.)

One can hope that this  doesn’t inspire bad knockoffs with women doing even grosser things to one another but does allow filmmakers to take more chances with all-female ensembles and comedies.

Scarface Comes to Blu-ray in Style

Coming in September is the Blu-ray debut of the classic Al Pacino film Scarface on September 6. Universal Home Entertainment is sparing nothing to make certain this becomes quite the event. There have been art contests and now there’s the imminent arrival of the Scarface-themed humidor.

For the ultimate collector and cigar enthusiast, an elegantly hand-crafted Scarface-themed humidor will be made available in an exclusive, never-before-available, limited edition, along with the new Scarface Special Limited Edition Blu-ray.

Created by the renowned Daniel Marshall, the humidor’s exterior is hand painted and polished with the Marshall’s trademark “1000 coat brilliant finish.”  The interior – made with untreated Spanish cedar – will properly condition and age approximately 100 cigars at optimal humidity levels. Limited to 1,000 worldwide, each individually numbered humidor comes embellished with custom medallions inspired by the iconic film and includes a certificate of authenticity.

As seen in the photo above, The Scarface Special Limited Edition Blu-ray also includes art cards from the “Scarface Kingpins of Design” fan art contest where fans had a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to design Scarface-inspired artwork using classic Tony Montana images from the film. (more…)

You can buy a piece of ‘Star Trek: The Experience’ this Saturday

You can buy a piece of ‘Star Trek: The Experience’ this Saturday

If you were looking for that little special something for your own bridge recreation, here’s your chance.

The Las Vegas Sun reports that unneeded, unwanted and/or unnecessary items and effects from the old “Star Trek Experience” at the Las Vegas Hilton are being put up for sale this Saturday from 10 a.m.-3 p.m. at a storage facility at 66 Spectrum Blvd. in Las Vegas

High on the list are chairs, stools and tables from the city’s greatest outer-galaxy tavern, Quark’s. Also being made available are segments of bridges, the transporter room and halls from the replica Enterprise, and seats from the Klingon Encounter ride. Prices are set between $50 and $500. Propworx, which specializes in selling assets of movie and film productions, is handling the sale.

Alison Bechdel on ‘State by State’

Alison Bechdel, who’s probably best known for her memoir Fun Home, has an essay and art in the upcoming State by State: A Panoramic Portrait of America.

She has a note about the project on her blog, and then there’s a new review of it in Publishers Weekly.

From the (pretty brief) review:

Alison Bechdel’s illustrated story about her life after moving to Vermont brilliantly combines personal history with historical fact, as does Charles Bock’s essay on growing up and working in his parent’s Las Vegas pawnshop.

L.A. and Vegas Vying for Comic-Con

L.A. and Vegas Vying for Comic-Con

As all interested parties get ready for this week’s Comic-Con International, a couple other municipalities are preparing to try to wrest the massive convention away from its historic home in San Diego.

Both Los Angeles and Las Vegas have their eye on Comic-Con, according to Variety. The event’s extreme growth has been a boon, but San Diego can’t handle the demand anymore, Comic-Con marketing director David Glanzer said.

That means Comic-Con may have to embrace the marketing mayhem that became a fixture of E3 before it downsized a year ago. So, even with the convention locked into San Diego for the next four years, cities such as Las Vegas and Los Angeles are actively trying to lure Comic-Con away.

"We don’t like to go in and infringe on other people’s leases when they are in the middle of doing business," says Chris Meyer, VP of convention sales for the Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Bureau. Nevertheless, he admits, "We will be down in Comic-Con 2008 to have some discussions."

The way he sees it, Las Vegas has some dramatic advantages, including twice the floor space and a surplus of competitively priced hotel rooms. Meyers notes, "I’ve got more rooms on my corners than they do in most of their downtown area."

Thoughts on the Celibate Superhero

Thoughts on the Celibate Superhero

With Incredible Hulk hitting theaters this weekend, the crazy cats over at io9 recently posted a list of popular comic book characters whose talents might allow them to save the universe — but cause problems when they start to feel a little frisky.

It’s a great read, but it also reveals a plot point from at least one upcoming film, so be warned.

Oh, and if you’ve ever wondered about the ol’ Green Goliath’s sex life, Charlie Jane has you covered:

Since I’ve read almost every Hulk comic ever published (except I admit Bruce Jones lost me after a while) I should stick in a little dissertation about the Hulk’s sexual history. Can the comics version of the Hulk really never have sex? We know that the Hulk is Incredibly, perhaps Unfeasibly, well-hung, because the Hulk gets naked in Incredible Hulk #400 and his arch-enemy The Leader remarks on how well-endowed he is. But it’s strongly implied, during the "gray Hulk" period, that the gray Hulk — who’s working as a Las Vegas leg-breaker — is getting laid on a fairly regular basis.

Well, that settles it, I guess. Head over to io9 for the full rundown of under-sexed superheroes.

NYCC: A Post-Game Analysis

NYCC: A Post-Game Analysis

Fifty-nine weeks ago I slammed the first two New York Comic-Cons pretty hard, so it’s only appropriate that I comment on this year’s jamboree. The previous shows were held in February, so the mere fact that people waiting in line this year didn’t have to suffer in below-freezing wind chills is, in and of itself, a vast improvement.

The show was better organized, crowd flow on Friday and Sunday was almost manageable, and the convention staff from Reed Communications (not the volunteers, who were great) drifted more towards being hospitable and informed. In fact, they were neither hospitable nor informed but you could tell that this year somebody suggested being so might be a good idea.

Saturday was pretty much the same premise as last year: “What if you tried to squeeze the entire population of Manhattan into a phone booth?” They claim attendance records were broken and that would be nice to believe, but it would be even nicer if they were at a venue where they could actually obtain enough space so that people could walk down the aisles without getting bashed in the face by an endless number of backpacks and tripped by an equal number of light sabers.

I can’t help but wonder what the show would have been like if god hadn’t helped out. Passover started Saturday and the New York metropolitan area contains a lot of religious Jews. And the pope was in for the weekend, so a lot of Catholics were attending one or another event. In fact, it looked like he was on Frank Miller’s Dark Knight panel.

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Jeff Smith’s ‘RASL’ Sells Out

Jeff Smith’s ‘RASL’ Sells Out

 

Good news for Jeff Smith, as RASL #1 is going back to press.

Smith mentioned that the first issue has sold out in a blog post about his trip to Las Vegas for ComicsPro, the second annual meeting of direct-market comics retailers.

We immediately learned that most retailers were sold out of RASL #1, and had been for weeks! During the Cartoon Books presentation I announced that RASL #1 would be going back to press. The new printing, which will sport a new color logo (and a price on the cover of the book!) will be offered through Diamond soon. Our intitial orders for #1 were 20,000 and we printed an extra 4,000 which we blew through the first weekend.

If you haven’t yet read RASL and want to hear a little more about it before picking up a copy of the second printing, my review is right here.

For those who care about things like first editions, good luck finding a copy. The stores are cleaned out and there are hardly any copies on eBay.