With well over a decade under the belt of the world’s favorite wall crawler in cinema, what direction does Marvel take him next? With the casting of Tom Holland and confirmed rumors by Marvel, we do know they will be following a young high school Peter Parker through his struggles and his transition into one of the worlds greatest heroes.
But, before you can assume where you are going, you should look back at where you came from. Let’s take a look back at how Spider-Man set the table for comic book movies in cinema.
Spider-Man was released May 3rd 2002. It Starred Tobey Maguire, Kirsten Dunst, James Franco and Willem Dafoe. This movie was one that set the table for modern day hero movies. Directed by Sam Raimi and coupled with an amazing score by Danny Elfman, Spider-Man soared into theaters. It followed closely to the comics and the story of Peter Parker as an awkward nerdy teenager bitten by a genetically altered super spider, while dealing with his insecurities and balancing great power with great responsibility. With an $821 million world wide gross, Spider-Man proved that this was the new path of cinema.
Spider-Man 2 was released June 30th 2004. It pitted Peter Parker against his idol and Spidey against one of his deadliest foes, Doctor Octopus. Following close to the same formula as its predecessor, we followed a slightly more confident Spider-Man trying to balance his life as one of the worlds greatest heroes and his fear of what being that hero may cost him as Peter Parker.
Though critics bashed Spider-Man 3, it has a worldwide gross over $890 million. I believe most of its criticism came via the lack of back story for one of the worlds most beloved spidey villains, Venom. Fans also believed Topher Grace was a poor choice for the role. Spider-Man 3 was released May 4th 2007 and explored the dark side of having great power and vengeance in your heart.
The Amazing Spider-Man 1 & 2
The Amazing Spider-Man was released July 3rd 2012. It was an attempt to re-boot the Spidey franchise without straying too far from the source content. Director Marc Webb decided that he would skimp on some details, assuming the audience wouldn’t want to revisit Peter’s brief stint in wresting or showing in detail how Spidey sense looked through the eyes of Parker.
In his second attempt, The Amazing Spider-Man 2, Director Marc Webb attempted to improve upon where he fell short in his 2012 Spidey debut, by bringing in a A list cast that included Jamie Foxx, Emma Stone, paul Giamatti, Dane DeHaan. He also decided to take the movie over the top with bigger explosions and more over the top action, while having Spider-Man realize his true strength. Webb seemed to abandoned his idea of the darker more down to earth Spider-Man and venture back closer to source material. Even going as far as to make his suite lighter and more like the original.
Tom Holland’s New Ultimate Spider-Man Haircut
Which brings us to the present. Of course we know very little about the exact direction Jon Watts will be taking our new Spider-Man. But let’s talk about what we do know. We know we will get our first glimpse of Spidey in Captain America Civil War, we know that Tom Holland will be playing a young high school aged Peter Parker. He will be as conflicted as ever and learning to deal with his new found powers. His costume will we be closer to the origins of Spider-Man.
What we don’t know about this incarnation is how he will fit into the already well established Avengers universe on screen. It’s the only variable that could make this Spidey significantly different from previous versions on screen.
Sex Education Season 3- Review
This review doesn’t contain any plot spoilers but if you want to go in totally blind, don’t read more than the first and last paragraphs!
Yesterday, Netflix dropped the trailer for the third season of its hit show Sex Education. The raunchy TV show first premiered in pandemic-less 2019, and after COVID disrupted the filming of the third season, Season 3 is finally here. And it soars. Netflix gives us more of the same in the best way possible. Check out the new trailer below.
The opening scene of the newest series sets the tone we are familiar with at Moordale; a sex-filled romp full of comedy, intimacy, and a great soundtrack! And that’s about right. The newest season is more of everything we love about Netflix’s one-of-a-kind show picks up with a time-jump, Jean is heavily pregnant (and still hasn’t told Jakob), the summer is over and it’s back to school for our impressive ensemble with the worry of university looming over everyone. After being heartbroken by Maeve ignoring his voicemail confessing his love for her, Asa Butterfield’s Otis is secretly having casual sex with one of the most popular girls in school.
Emma Mackey’s Maeve, having never heard the voicemail after Isaac (George Robinson) deleted it is focusing more on herself and her friendship with Aimee and Isaac after the devastating end of season two which saw Elsie, Maeve’s little sister, being taken into care after Maeve called the police on her mum, which has also led to Maeve being shut out completely by her mum. The two leads of the show spend a lot of the season sharing tension-filled scenes as Otis is upset with Maeve for ignoring his message, and Maeve is upset with Otis, thinking that he hasn’t spoken to her all summer, and you’re just screaming at the TV hoping Otis tells Maeve about the voicemail and when the truth finally does come out, it’s cathartic.
A big change in Season 3 is of course that, after the explosive end to the last season, Mr Groff is no longer the Headmaster at Moordale. He is unemployed and living with his brother, played by Jason Isaacs, and pretending to go to work. This obviously leaves a vacuum in Moordale which is quickly filled by new headteacher; Hope Haddon, played by Jemima Kirke. Kirke is the villain you will love to hate as she brings a totally new and incredibly strict leadership to Moordale. She really is one of the most brilliantly unlikeable villains in a long time. Hope’s main aim is to rebuild the reputation of Moordale after the events of the previous two seasons have left Moordale with the nickname “The Sex School” in the press. Hope goes above and beyond to fix this and makes more than a few enemies along the way. You will love watching and rooting for everything she does to fail!
Sex Education has always been impressive with its inclusion and this season takes a big step with the introduction of Dua Saleh’s Cal, the show’s first (though not only) openly non-binary character and so the writers must deal with what it’s like to be non-binary in school. Saleh’s performance is fantastic in this regard bringing xyr real-life experience as a non-binary person to the role. They have to deal with gendered school uniforms and being told to wear a skirt or stand in the girls’ line outside a lesson (yes, Headmistress Hope really is that contemptible), and while the writing around this sensitive topic can feel a little ham-fisted at times, it’s all well-intentioned and is handled well. Cal is strong and funny and stands up for themself and makes a great, compelling addition to the already impressive and busy cast of the show. Cal begins an unlikely friendship with Head Boy Jackson Marchetti as they both decide to take on the tyrannical new Headmistress.
My biggest issue with Sex Education, though, is Adam Groff (Connor Swindells). Specifically, his relationship with Ncuti Gatwa’s Eric. His performance is great but the ‘homophobic bully turns out to be queer’ trope is overused and harmful. It’s harmful enough on its own, but Sex Education takes it to the next level by having Eric and his bully fall in love. It’s as though Eric has Stockholm syndrome and has fallen for his abuser. And season 3 doubles down on this trope, having the two begin the series in a relationship and much more openly. Adam admits to being “a bit of a puff” in school, but still can’t tell his mother. Adam could have had a great redemption arc across the show if he’d have just realised that homophobia is bad and trying to make amends with those he has hurt rather. I also think exploring Adam’s bisexuality a little more would’ve been beneficial. It’s as though any interest he had in women in seasons 1 and 2 is totally gone here, which was a little disappointing. The writers do their best to redeem Adam and show us that he’s changed, particularly when he’s stuck next to Raheem on a coach trip to France which ends with the show trying to replicate the classic and iconic “it’s my vagina” moment from its first season, but it never quite feels like Adam deserves Eric.
All of the performances this season are brilliant. Ncuti Gatwa’s performance dealing with the complexities of his relationship with Swindells’ Adam is done very well, the two have an intimate personal relationship and Swindell does a wonderful job of opening up as Adam for us more and more each episode. As Eric Effiong, Otis’ best friend, Gatwa balances the comedy and the very serious issues perfectly in a charming performance. In one episode, Eric goes to Nigeria for a family wedding, and it is a fantastic exploration being queer and black in a religious Nigerian family in a country where it is illegal to be gay and Gatwa does it flawlessly. Mimi Keene is given much more to do as Ruby and she becomes much more than the ‘untouchable’ she has been limited to thus far. BAFTA winner Aimee Lee Wood returns as everyone’s favourite Aimee and is back to her usual charming and hilarious self, who now drives, although not very well. Butterfield and Mackey make compelling characters who are growing as people as each episode passes. While sometimes the comedy does seem a little lazier than previously; a lot seems to be relying on toilet humour and fart jokes, Sex Education still knows how to make us laugh. A lot. And I’m elated to report: there is MUCH more of Madam Groff!
So, strap in and get ready to dive into the hilarious and heart-warming world of Sex Education once more with its third season which is a conclusive hit! No show is tackling real social issues as well as this, it handles the most sensitive topics seemingly with ease. It’s a funny, NSFW, unique, inclusive look at love, sex, and being a British teenager.
Make sure to stream Sex Education, exclusively on Netflix from September 17th.
Grand Theft Auto Trilogy (may be delayed)
Rumors surfaced just last week of a Grand Theft Auto Trilogy (remastered) coming to multiple platforms. The rumors even suggested a release window as early as this winter. These rumors were put to rest recently according to an “inside leaker.”
The story of the rumors first came to light in a story from Kotaku, which were the first to run the story. A November window was originally planned for the ‘unconfirmed’ trilogy which would be available for multiple platforms. The trilogy was said to come as a remaster with a mixture of old and newer graphics.
The trilogy would feature three titles in the collection – the collection would include Grand Theft Auto III, Grand Theft Auto: Vice City and Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas. With such a clamor for GTA VI, it makes since for Rockstar to release this trilogy as it has not released a new Grand Theft Auto title since 2013 with GTA V.
Rockstar has not released a game since 2018’s Red Dead Redemption 2. The company which is known for a slew of major titles; has been rather quiet over the last few years. Rumors have run rampant over a new GTA title being announced, but for the near future it seems the newest title from the company we will receive, will indeed be technically older titles.
We will update with further developments on the story.
2021 OSCARS- What They Got Right, And What They Got Wrong
Chloé Zhao and Nomadland make history and win top prizes at the Oscars.
Last night was the long-awaited 93rd Academy Awards, after a very uniquely long (due to COVID) awards season, it was finally time to find out who would be taking home the golden statuettes. We knew from the get-go that things would be a little bit different than usual; Steven Soderbergh was directing it and wanted to make it feel like a film rather than an awards show. But we underestimated just how much Soderbergh would switch up the conventions and traditions we’ve come to know at the Oscars every year…
The Oscars switched things up a lot, and most people were unhappy with the changes; there were no performances of the nominated Original songs during the ceremony itself, there were virtually no clips from the films nominated that played throughout the ceremony, when Trent Reznor, Atticus Ross, and Jon Batiste won Best Original Score for Soul, they didn’t play any of the Oscar-winning music, instead the winners awkwardly approached the stage with no sound other than applause. Another change that upset people was the in-memoriam section, which was accompanied by an usually upbeat song, and each person barely got a second of time on the screen. These were minor changed that most people didn’t like, but could look past, the biggest change that many say ruined the whole evening, though, came when the Academy announced that they would present Best Picture third from last. This decision was met with apprehension from most.
Although most thought that maybe the Academy placed Best Actor last so the final award could be a tribute to the late Chadwick Boseman, who was posthumously nominated for his performance in Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom. The Academy had invited his family, gave him an extra-long tribute during the in-memoriam segment, and a piece of artwork inspired by Boseman was given to all the nominees. It’s clear that the academy expected him to win. But then Joaquin Phoenix, who clearly would have rather been anywhere else, half-heartedly read out Anthony Hopkins’ name (who wasn’t able to attend as an 83-year-old during a pandemic), the Academy accepted on his behalf and the show ended. Not only did the academy take advantage of Boseman’s passing by restructuring the age-old tradition of Best Picture being the final award, but it backfired because the person who won the final award wasn’t there and was denied permission to join via Zoom. Because of this, Nomadland’s historic Best Picture sweep was not given the final celebration it deserved. It won Best Picture, and two more awards were left, one of which was Best Actor, and the winner wasn’t even able to attend. This left a bitter taste in most people’s mouths; not only did Boseman deserve to be honoured, or at least not taken advantage of, but Nomadland and Chloé Zhao deserved to have their big moment accepting the biggest award in the industry to close the most prestigious awards show in the industry. All in all, it was a very anti-climactic ending and left most people feeling disappointed; more people will remember the horrifically handled ending than will speak about Nomadland’s big win. That’s enough about the negative stuff now, after all, the Oscars are a celebration of the year’s films.
While the ceremony itself was questionable, the results and winners were great all around, and putting personal preferences aside, I don’t think anyone can say that any of this year’s winners weren’t deserving and as a celebration of cinema and film over the past year, the films honoured finally got their deserving awards. It was a historic evening; Emerald Fennel picked up the Oscar for Best Original Screenplay for Promising Young Woman, making her the first woman in 13 years to win a screenplay award, Mia Neal and Jamika Wilson became the first black women to win for Best Hair and Makeup for their work on Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom, Yuh-Jung Youn became the first ever Korean Actress to win an Oscar, Frances McDormand joined the elite club of actors with three wins in the leading category and tied with Katheryn Hepburn as the actor with the most Academy Awards with 4 (although one of McDormand’s is for producing), Chloé Zhao became the first woman of colour and only the second woman ever to win Best Director (after Katheryn Bigelow won for The Hurt Locker in 2010), and Nomadland became the first ever Best Picture winner directed by a woman of colour, Nomadland became the first film to sweep Best Picture at all the major award shows since 12 Years a Slave in 2012 (CCA, DGA, PGA, Golden Globe, BAFTA, and Oscar), it also swept director at all of those for Chloé Zhao. Nomadland is also a rarity because it is a Best Picture winner about a woman, very few Best Picture winners are about women. After winning Best Director, Actress, and Picture, Nomadland’s performance at this year’s Oscars is a triumph for women.
Some other big wins include Daniel Kaluuya winning Best Supporting Actor for his role as Fred Hampton in Judas and the Black Messiah, Eric Messerschmidt’s work on Mank upset in the Best Cinematography category, beating the frontrunner Joshua James Richards’ Nomadland. The Father saw some love by taking home Best Adapted Screenplay and Best Actor in a leading role for Anthony Hopkins. While everyone will be a little sad that Boseman never got his moment at the Oscars, Boseman left an impact most actors only dream of through his role as Black Panther in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, and while it would’ve been nice to see him win an Oscar, Hopkins gave a stunningly devastating, career-best performance many are calling one of the top Best Actor winning performances ever, and he is more than worthy of the award. Most of the outrage about Boseman losing is not because Hopkins didn’t deserve it, but because of how the Academy handled it.
Personally, I am ecstatic about the winners; as a champion of Chloé Zhao’s work and her intimate character study of a woman in her sixties who loses everything after the 2008 financial crash, I was very happy to see Nomadland take home to top prize. I was also elated to see Yuh-Jung Youn win for her masterful performance in Minari, and while any of the fantastic actresses nominated in the leading category could’ve won, I liked seeing Frances McDormand’s more understated subtle, nuanced performance get the recognition it deserved. However, while the number of good things outweigh the number of bad things, the final 20 minutes of the ceremony will always be tainted by how badly the Academy executed this year’s awards. The winners were fantastic and all deserving, the butchered ending of this ceremony has cemented the 93rd Academy Awards as one of the worst executed ceremonies in Oscars history.
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