Daniel Lopez showcases the cascading Milky Way over desert landscapes, the foaming clouds lapping like ocean shores at the feet of mountains, and more astounding sites from one of the most beautiful places on this pale blue dot, the Canary Islands.
April 24 marks the 21st anniversary of the orbiting of the Hubble telescope, deployed by space shuttle Discovery. After some false starts and costly repairs, it proved to be one of our greatest tools for peering into the cosmos. To commemorate the landmark achievement, NASA has released this image of two galaxies in the Andromeda constellation that swirl together, seemingly in the shape of a rose. Their boring, official name is Arp 273.
So the 83rd Annual Academy Awards Ceremony was nothing like the previous 82. It was probably the worst awards event in recent memory. Just a few observations of what contributed to the scornful event that was supposed to celebrate the year in film. The many WTF moments include:
- Banksy was robbed.
- Mila Kunis’ tattoo-looking breasts/dress.
- Timberlake and Kunis making some oblique joke that absolutely no one got.
- McCounaughey and Johansen making some oblique mumble-joke that probably wasn’t a joke at all.
- James Franco in drag
- Christian Bale plugging a website for Dickie Ecklund.
- The Academy president and ABC person assuring us there will still be a relationship betwixt the two until 2020.
- Supposedly this was to be directed at the youth market, but there were an inordinate amount of walking canes involved (not that Kirk Douglas didn’t rock).
- The opening montage: it would have been better if they had actually landed in the canyon of 127 Hours, and Franco would face Franco. But apparently no one could write that hilarity.
- Celine Dion
- That weird projection screen onstage that made everything look like you’re having an acid flashback.
- That confounded microphone, which at least two winners found hard to find because it was too bloody invisible.
- The fact that I just said “bloody.”
Anyway, I think I’m not alone in calling this the dumbest Oscars ever, and aside from the fact that my favorite film of the year, Inception, won four awards, I really think these awards are for egomaniacs and future talent, like the shaggy-haired winner of best short film, Luke Matheny, who hopefully makes more movies in the future. Kudos to Sandra Bullock for keeping it real during the presentation for Best Actor, and again I gotta mention the highlight- actor/legend Kirk Douglas milking it and hitting up the ladies was true Oscar gold.
Update via Buzzfeed: Kirk Douglas arriving at the Oscars in 1954:
Variety reports that not only are the rumors true about a prequel to the 1968 original being made, but it’s due to hit theaters next summer. The apes will all be CGI, courtesy of Peter Jackson’s WETA Digital (they know monkeys; look at King Kong), and the plot sure sounds familiar.
“Rise of the Apes” is an origins story set in present-day San Francisco. The film is a reality-based cautionary tale, where man’s own experiments with genetic engineering lead to the development of intelligence in apes and the onset of a war for supremacy.
Oh yeah. If memory serves correctly, that was the basis for Conquest of the Planet of the Apes, one of many sequels that had a circular arc in a coherent series. Initially, Rise of the Apes was going to be called Caesar… the name Roddy McDowell picked from the dictionary as his new name. CotPotA was my favorite entry in those follow-up films, and if they mess this up we can forget about another attempt at this franchise for a long time.
Count me among the teeming masses that can’t wait to see Green Lantern when it comes out in 500 days. The franchise, about a race of aliens scattered among the planets (we get Greenie) and endowed with superpowers will be a fresh, and apparently artistic endeavor. So far, at least in concept stage, it looks promising.
Some movies from the past could use an update, a polishing here, a plot kink there. Some fine tuning would work to improve on them. This is not the case 99% of the time. This is because 99% of the movies worth remaking (i.e. getting asses in the seats to see them) were already good movies in the first place, and still succeed in entertaining new audiences on Blu-Ray today. One title, however, seems to fall in the 1% of necessary re-tooling, and it opens next year.
That’s Terminator Salvation‘s Sam Worthington as Perseus in the 2010 remake of Clash of the Titans. And as much as I adored the original for it’s groovy special effects, I could go for a new version, one that’s maybe a little easier to follow, plotwise. The effects are sure to be excellent, anyway, and lookie here- Liam Neeson plays Zeus, and Ralph Fiennes, Hades. Winner-potential.
Another project supposedly being hammered out is a live version of Akira, which I think could be fantastic. And thankfully some remakes I’d heard about are either dead rumors, or failed starts, like The Last Starfighter, The Evil Dead, Conan the Barbarian, and The Breakfast Club.
However, I must frown on the imDb confirmed “in production” crap-fests awaiting us. In 2010, look out for The Thing (a remake of one of the best remakes in history), & The Birds (No!!). 2011 looms with Escape From New York, and Westworld, while they plan to spit in the face of classic cinema in 2012 with The Dirty Dozen.
It’s really a tired (yet true) idiom of Hollywood running out of ideas faster than the speed of light. I’m still reeling over the new Nightmare on Elm Street camp. And I actually wouldn’t mind a remake of some old movies that could use a tune-up. Farenheit 451 comes to mind, but then again, so does Speed Racer.