Movie News

Mr. Beaks And Director Scott Stewart Talk LEGION, PRIEST And The Hording Of Anamorphic Lenses!

Published at: Jan. 21, 2010, 8:02 p.m. CST by mrbeaks

Scott Stewart's LEGION is an apocalyptic siege tale in which the battle to save the world is waged in and around a roadside diner somewhere in the Mojave Desert - just as the Book of Revelations predicted. Sticking up for humankind against the wrath of God is one renegade, machine gun-toting archangel played by Paul Bettany; going against humankind is pretty much everything the big guy in the sky can muster. Place your bets. Though the stakes are rather high, Stewart's picture is more of a modest, intimate-in-scope homage to low-budget wonders like THE TERMINATOR or John Carpenter's original ASSAULT ON PRECINCT 13. And just as those movies begat much bigger things for their directors, Stewart's filmmaking debut is essentially the first-step up the ladder to more ambitious projects - one of which, the "retro-futuristic" man-versus-vampire yarn PRIEST (also starring Bettany), wrapped principal photography last November, and is scheduled to hit theaters this August 20th. I was on the set of PRIEST a few months ago, and the difference in scale between that film and LEGION is vast. That Sony greenlit PRIEST so soon after LEGION was finished speaks favorably to the studio's belief in Stewart's potential (obviously, most directors' fates hinge on their last picture's box office success). That said, Stewart isn't some fresh-out-of-film-school upstart; he's been a very respected name in Hollywood for the last decade thanks to his work with the now-shuttered visual f/x outfit The Orphanage (which Stewart co-founded). Given his familiarity with the gargantuan and oft-unwieldy nature of big studio filmmaking, this makes him a much safer bet than some on-the-make indie phenom whose last film cost less than seven figures. I've spoken with Stewart twice now, and while I have no idea yet as to whether or not he's the goods, I do know that he's a big-time film geek. This, admittedly, does not mean he'll be the next Cameron or Carpenter, but it sure makes it easy to root for him as he navigates the ever-trecherous studio system. In the below interview, we talk about making the shift from f/x guru to filmmaker, the "analog" nature of LEGION, and John Ford's influence on PRIEST. Enjoy!

Mr. Beaks: You're done with PRIEST now.

Stewart: We wrapped PRIEST right before Thanksgiving. We're working on the director's cut right now; the visual f/x facilities are gearing up. It's a very different movie from LEGION. Whereas LEGION has a lot of fun and tries to not take itself too seriously, PRIEST is a more somber movie. It's much more like THE SEARCHERS.

Beaks: It's also a much larger undertaking.

Stewart: It's considerably bigger. And it looks that way, too. I'm color correcting right now with my cinematographer Don Burgess in the new Sony Colorworks, the 4K DI [Digital Intermediate] suite that they have here. I shot the movie in true anamorphic with old C-series lenses from the '70s, and I'm like, "Wow. This looks so great." I'm so happy. It looks like the movies I grew up loving.

Beaks: Since we're talking anamorphic lenses, I'll go ahead and bring this up: you told us at the PRIEST set visit that you wanted to shoot LEGION true anamorphic, but couldn't. Why was that?

Stewart: There were no lenses available. Panavision was all out. They were mostly all with Mr. Bay, who was shooting TRANSFORMERS 2 - and he breaks a lot of them. At the time, they had stopped making the lenses, but I think they're making some new ones now because we had a couple of newly-created lenses on PRIEST that were really amazing, in addition to the old C Series ones that they shot CLOSE ENCOUNTERS with. But I wasn't able to have them [on LEGION], so we shot Super 35. But it's released anamorphic. There are a lot of advantages, in post, to shooting Super 35; you have a lot more image, top and bottom, to play with. But on PRIEST I said, "Screw that. It worked for so many of my heroes to not have that advantage. So what you see is what you get."

Beaks: This forces you to take greater care with your compositions.

Stewart: Yeah, and that's a big part of it for me anyway. Widescreen composition was really important to me and my cinematographer John Lindley. Giving the film an analog feel was also important. There are a lot of digital f/x in it, but wherever we could we tried to shoot things practically and augment where we needed to. Wings, on the other hand, are extremely difficult. (Laughs) I was with Paul the other night at The Tonight Show, and Tarantino was on. He came up after the show and said, "Hey, man! The angel fight looks rad! None of that computer graphics bullshit." And I said, "Actually, the wings are digital." And he was like, "Aw, really?" And I was like, "Well, we didn't want it to look like a Nora Ephron movie." It's really hard to make real wings look dynamic, so that was a concession we had to make. But Paul and Kevin are really fighting. Every aspect of the fight is real. We just had to add the wings.

Beaks: Did you work with Quentin on GRINDHOUSE?

Stewart: I did not work directly with Quentin, by the folks at my company, The Orphanage, did. We did the Yellow Bastard sequence in SIN CITY, and we also worked on GRINDHOUSE. We melted his penis. I told someone the other day that I talked to Quentin, and they said, "Did you tell him we melted his penis?" And I was like, "No. I forgot to mention that." I'm sure he would've appreciated it.

Beaks: Coming out of the visual f/x world, it seems antithetical that you would be trying to do things more "analog".

Stewart: I think that my favorite f/x are the invisible one. It's a real catch-22. I did come out of visual f/x, but before that I was a screenwriting major at NYU. Writing was my first passion in my life. Well, computers and writing - and that's sort of what led me to become a visual f/x artist. I have an unusual background in that respect. I've worked on the pre- and the post-side. It's sort of antithetical, but I also don't want to abuse the tools. Some of it is budgetary: if you have all the money in the world, you get to do what Cameron did and have almost nothing be real; you get to work it all out in a digital sphere. Did you get to visit his performance capture stages?

Beaks: No, I did not.

Stewart: It looks like NASA. You have this main floor, and then bleachers going all the way up, and they're all full of people animating or pre-vising. They're doing video game quality versions of mech suits walking around, so that when Cameron stands on the floor with people in their performance capture suits, he's holding up his monitor - which is essentially his camera - and moves around; he's seeing a pretty tricked-out version of the world with animated things in it through his monitor. If you have $350 million, you get to do that. But we were a pretty low-budget movie by studio standards. We're a pretty modest movie - especially when it comes to below-the-line spending on visual f/x. So we tried to do as much as we could practically. We built an animatronic head for the ice cream man, but when I saw Doug Jones do it for real, I said, "That is so much cooler." So, in reality, I just used Doug's face and stretched it digitally. That, in a weird way, has a more analog feel because it looks like it's really him. With Gladys [Jeanette Miller] climbing up the wall, almost all of that is a stunt person. We did it all in one shot with the stunt person running up the wall, but it looked too possible; she looked like an incredibly great athlete. And if you do it like that, suddenly your film becomes a Zucker spoof. So in order to create that EXORCIST feel, you've got to make somebody do something that just looks wrong and impossible; that's why we resorted to a digital version of her. But then we also had an eighty-six-year-old lady on an upside-down version of the set so we could make it look like she is really walking on the ceiling. I think the background of a visual f/x artist is that you always change the gag. That's why TERMINATOR 2 looks so good: sometimes it's real and sometimes it's CG. It's just great to mix it up.

Beaks: You're keeping the viewer off balance.

Stewart: That's right. Sometimes there's a digital version of Gabriel on a car, and sometimes it's a stunt guy with wings, and sometimes it's Kevin Durand up against a night sky. You're always mixing it up.

Beaks: Right. And that's when you sometimes get someone complaining about a fake-looking CG shot which is actually practical.

Stewart: Visual f/x artists who become directors, generally speaking, get a pretty bad rap. And judging from the movies, sometimes deservedly so. But for me, because I also wrote the movie, I plan everything in advance technically and creatively, and then it's all about the cast. On the day, it's about being real close to the actors and sitting by the camera, and not disappearing into the monitors with your headphones on and directing the movie from a distance. It's about mixing it up as much as possible.

Beaks: How much of LEGION was a learning experience - particularly in working with actors?

Stewart: Oh, I think every day. I think you have to assume that even James Cameron felt every day was a learning experience on AVATAR; being the brilliant, genius, precocious fellow that he is, he still has to invent and learn things. But [LEGION] being my first film... yeah, the learning curve was steep. I learned a lot, and the same was true on PRIEST. I guess that's why I love doing it: you learn every moment of every day - and, hopefully, you're learning to do it better. (Laughs) I had a very big ensemble cast [on LEGION]. I had actors with a variety of different skills and experiences, but it was really great; everyone was there and committed. I didn't experience that nightmare scenario you often hear about movie stars, and I think the reason I didn't was because I had laid out a really clear plan to everyone about where we wanted to go. And then I gave them the freedom to be able to craft their characters once I'd cast them in the movie. I made everyone feel really included, and made them feel listened to. Paul Thomas Anderson says you cast the best people you can, and then show up on the day and be their biggest fan.

Beaks: Knowing that some might need hand-holding, while others might be like, "Just leave me alone. I'll take care of it."

Stewart: Yeah. Some people need a lot of talking to because they want it, and others are like, "Don't talk to me about anything. Just let me do my thing." It was great. You just have to dial it into taste.

Beaks: Just to give people a sense of what we saw during our PRIEST set visit, because we're still embargoed... your influences stretch from Leone to BLADE RUNNER.

Stewart: And John Ford. It's major John Ford.

Beaks: But it's also kind of a vampire film. Conceptually, where did all of this come from?

Stewart: It's really a war movie. It takes place in a western setting, and it's a retro-futuristic world, but it's a war movie. Actually, it's kind of an after-the-war movie. There will be a 2-D-animated prologue to the film, and I will announce shortly who's doing that; it's very exciting... the idea of R-rated 2-D animation to show us the war between man and vampire throughout history, and how that leads us up to the beginning of our movie. I'm really excited about that. It's really exciting to show people animation like that that, which they don't normally get to see in a big movie. It's mashing up a bunch of stuff, but when you start to look at John Ford's THE SEARCHERS, and you start to say, "Okay, what if vampires were the Comanche?" They're the others; they're the ones that we war against. And I took a very contemporary sensibility to that: it's not so clear who the enemy is. I play around with that, and with the idea of a war that goes on forever, and then you come back from the war. You thought you were going to come back a hero, but society has moved on from you and cast you off. You've become something that people are afraid of, people they won't sit next to on the bus. Those are the Priests. And suddenly it becomes more like FIRST BLOOD. That's just really interesting stuff to me. I don't know that I had anything interesting to say about the vampire genre, but when I read [PRIEST] and the vampires became that for us - they're feral, they're not human, they don't speak English, they have their own culture - then all that stuff starts to become interesting.



Sounds cool. In the meantime, Scott Stewart's LEGION opens Friday, January 22nd. Faithfully submitted, Mr. Beaks

Readers Talkback

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  • Jan. 21, 2010, 8:07 p.m. CST

    Legion looks fuckin sweet

    by MacReady452

  • Jan. 21, 2010, 8:08 p.m. CST

    Pity he didn't ask about THE PROPHECY...

    by BurnHollywood

    ;-)

  • Jan. 21, 2010, 8:08 p.m. CST

    now I'll go back and read this shit

    by MacReady452

  • Jan. 21, 2010, 8:12 p.m. CST

    Why is most of this about Priest?

    by Jaka

    Color me confused. I mean, do the two movies inter-connect or something? I wanted to know more about Legion and I wanted to know what it was about, period. Basically, I know what Priest is about now.

  • Jan. 21, 2010, 8:18 p.m. CST

    Wasn't interested in LEGION until now.

    by one9deuce

    That was a great interview.

  • Jan. 21, 2010, 8:22 p.m. CST

    How was that a great interview?!

    by Jaka

    They talk about lenses, f/x, other directors and Priest. It has almost nothing to do with Legion.

  • Jan. 21, 2010, 8:22 p.m. CST

    Good interview!

    by ebonic_plague

    This guy sounds like someone to watch out for. Hopefully Legion is actually good, and the concept for Priest sounds interesting enough. But how the hell does Bay break that many lenses?

  • Jan. 21, 2010, 8:24 p.m. CST

    I dunno, Jaka...

    by ebonic_plague

    ...but I actually read the whole thing without getting bored and scrolling down halfway through. That is commendable for an AICN interview.

  • Jan. 21, 2010, 8:26 p.m. CST

    Has anyone seen 'Perfect Creature'?

    by zinc_chameleon

    a retro-futuristic vampire tale from New Zealand, that won lots of awards. The storyline: starting in the Middle Ages, male vampires-both immortal and superhumanly strong-began to be born. Very quickly they created a religious order, and policed themselves. The only blood-letting allowed was very formal, and in a Tridentine-like Mass setting. However, the best and brightest of them loses it, and fathers the first girl vampire. It is the job of the vampire priest-detective to hunt down both his brother vampire, and kill him, (which he does), but he reveres the little baby girl, and swears to give his life to protect her. All in a very pre-World-War II Battle-of-Britain atmosphere.

  • Jan. 21, 2010, 8:27 p.m. CST

    LEGION looks pretty self explanatory to me...

    by FlickaPoo

    ...I look forward to watching it with a moderate amount of wine or spirits.

  • Jan. 21, 2010, 8:29 p.m. CST

    ...and therefore I liked the interview. This guy sounds...

    by FlickaPoo

    ...like he's trying to make movies I want to watch.

  • Jan. 21, 2010, 8:30 p.m. CST

    ...I'm intrigued by this supposed PERFECT CREATURE.

    by FlickaPoo

  • Jan. 21, 2010, 8:37 p.m. CST

    Look it's Warren Worthington III

    by GayVegetarian

  • Jan. 21, 2010, 8:38 p.m. CST

    I haven't Seen Legion yet

    by D o o d

    but Paul Bettany is an awesome actor. Plus he's married to Jennifer Connely, Lucky Bastard!

  • Jan. 21, 2010, 8:41 p.m. CST

    Well I have ZERO idea what Legion is about

    by Jaka

    And didn't learn anything more by reading this interview. Nor did I learn anything that an person with a modicum of common sense doesn't already know about how f/x SHOULD be shot. I learned that this guy knows a lot of directors names, and that "Mr. Bay" breaks them, and that you more editing freedom shooting on Super 35. But I didn't learn anything about Legion. (shrug) I'm more interested in Priest, now, though.

  • Jan. 21, 2010, 8:49 p.m. CST

    Legion is shit, period, sorry

    by BillboeFett

    I saw it, total shit. </BR> Offensively shitty. </BR> It's not getting good reviews either. </BR> So far I've read 3 reviews, one gave it a 4 out of 10, one actually gave it a 1 out of 10. </BR> The concept makes no sense at all; God is evil and hates the world, so the angels HE created come down and try to destroy it, basically looking, sounding, and acting like demons. One angel revolts against them, because yeah, he's smarter and more noble than God hHimself, of course. </BR> So when the a "good" angel comes to earth and fight in the battle and then die.. where does he go? Heaven, back to be with God, the one he supposedly is rebelling against and hates. </BR> Eh.. dumb. </BR> Making angels bad, and God the villian, is really fucking dumb. </BR> What if God was evil? What if the devil was good? What if white people were black, black white, being wet means you're dry, nightime is daytime, rough really means smooth, sharp means dull, etc. Its self-defeating contradictory nonsense. </BR> And for everyone reading, its the book of Revelation, singular. Not "Revelations", period. </BR> It isn't a series of revelations, its a single revelation, a revealing, singular. An unfolding. </BR> And the bit where Doug Jones shows up as the Ice Cream man and the token horrible stereotype black character goes "oh... well, he's not so bad" and then the angel/demon makes the creaturely scream (of course), its like ZOMG!! SCARY!! </BR> No, it just kinda woke me up a bit from all the suck I was already suffering. </BR> Sorry guys, I was hoping this would rock. It just doesn't. </BR> I'm holding out for PRIEST though. </BR> The problem with LEGION isn't so much the visuals, production, fx, or even the acting (at least most of the actors), but the plot conceit itself. </BR> And yes, we're all DEAD TIRED of the 'protect the baby messiah at all costs' storyline.

  • Jan. 21, 2010, 8:55 p.m. CST

    If god exists...

    by Jaka

    ...he's the most evil mf ever.... but that's a conversation for another time.

  • Jan. 21, 2010, 8:56 p.m. CST

    ...aw, Catholic porn doesn't have to make sense...

    by FlickaPoo

    ...and it's never that good. You watch it for the atmosphere.<P>Anybody walking into LEGION expecting a good movie is going to be disappointed a lot in life.<P>Of course BillboeFett could be right...it could be unwatchable...but that's different from being bad.

  • Jan. 21, 2010, 8:57 p.m. CST

    Billboefett....

    by D o o d

    hahahahahaha, that was a brilliant rant! It was better than the article. At least you told us what Legion is like!!!!

  • Jan. 21, 2010, 8:58 p.m. CST

    ...Jaka, it's OK...

    by FlickaPoo

    ...to say motherfucker in this context...I've been watching the news about Haiti too...<P>Let it out.

  • Jan. 21, 2010, 9:01 p.m. CST

    The last 8,000 years of human history.

    by Jaka

    Evil. Mother. Fucker. Laughing maniacally about being so. "OK, how can I fuck with humanity today?"

  • Jan. 21, 2010, 9:02 p.m. CST

    Oh. And I have no idea...

    by Jaka

    ...how I managed to leave, like, six words out of that post up above. Apologies for that.

  • Jan. 21, 2010, 9:02 p.m. CST

    LEGION rips off GABRIEL!

    by james_cameron_raped_my_childhood

    Beaks, have you seen a low budget Australian movie called Gabriel? the dude from Spartacus is in it. It's been on DVD for a while. Stewart totally ripped off the "archangels with guns" concept! here's the trailer: http://tiny.cc/FxWBi

  • Jan. 21, 2010, 9:12 p.m. CST

    GABRIEL is OK

    by frank cotton

    it takes place in purgatory; purgatory looking kinda like a bad part of detroit. PERFECT CREATURE was better, but is unrelentingly dark - take your prozac before viewing. LEGION is going to be monday's matinee

  • Jan. 21, 2010, 9:14 p.m. CST

    Perfect Creature and Gabriel

    by Jaka

    Both available through NetFlix, Gabriel is available for online viewing. I think I'll check it out after the basketball tonight.

  • Jan. 21, 2010, 10:28 p.m. CST

    i['ll wait to see what rotten tomatoes says

    by Rupee88

    yes I trust the critical consensus, at least if it is low. If it high, sometimes they are off but mostly pretty close

  • Jan. 21, 2010, 11:01 p.m. CST

    It looks fucking horrible

    by RickyDMMontoya

    Only an idiot will like this film. I provide my double secret super guarantee on this matter.

  • Jan. 21, 2010, 11:21 p.m. CST

    My favorite part of this interview

    by MacReady452

    was learning that Micheal Bay smashes all the anamorphic lenses so no one can be as "cool" as him. What a fuckin dip shit.

  • Jan. 22, 2010, 12:15 a.m. CST

    That's the problem with "Legion"

    by Gozu

    Not enough fucking anamorphic lenses. Right. Too bad there isn't a lens that makes this look anything more than laughably bad. I'm sure "Priest" will be great though (fart-noise)(giggle). Are they blackmailing Paul Bettany or something? Best quote: "Visual f/x artists who become directors, generally speaking, get a pretty bad rap. And judging from the movies, sometimes deservedly so."

  • Jan. 22, 2010, 1:17 a.m. CST

    Agreed with BillboeFett

    by Chemicals

    Legion was dreadful, just awful. Nothing in the film made sense, least of all why the pregnant girl was important. And that shot of all the angels flying overhead. It lasts two seconds as part of a flashback. Movie was so weak.

  • Jan. 22, 2010, 1:24 a.m. CST

    Old Lady on Ceiling

    by Nezzer6364

    during the trailer is always great for an outburst of laughter.

  • Jan. 22, 2010, 1:36 a.m. CST

    how come in all the horror movies

    by BillboeFett

    whenever a person is possessed, they have to crawl on the walls and ceiling like an insect?? </BR> Why is that motif taken for granted? </BR> is the first thought of a demon, once it possesses a person "well, now that I'm inside this person, I'll make it crawl on the ceiling!" </BR> Ehh... whoever came up with that particularly lame mythology, which makes no sense, needs to crawl around on the bottom of a trash compactor, just as I close it, and run it through a crush cycle. </BR> And no, R2 and 3PO won't help you this time, crappy horror writers!

  • Jan. 22, 2010, 2:02 a.m. CST

    Someone make Elric with Bettany.

    by Dingbatty

    Bettany is Moorcock's choice.

  • Jan. 22, 2010, 2:05 a.m. CST

    saw it thurs night...advanced screening

    by presidentevil

    it was mediocre...wait for dvd if you dont DL, i was amazed how well they stretched the location budget, cg was half assed, i was glad i didnt pay for it...it was exactly as i expected it to be, then saw a pretty good trailer on the playstation network...it raised my hopes...those hope were dashed 30 minutes into the flick if you read this....call me "to lazy to write a review of a movie that doesn't do it for me"

  • Jan. 22, 2010, 7:35 a.m. CST

    Legion is blasphemous trash

    by alienindisguise

    This director is a fucking hack who has no "goods" Just another douche wrongly given a chance to add more shit to the film world.

  • Jan. 22, 2010, 7:52 a.m. CST

    Blasphemy! Oh No!

    by Aquatarkusman

    Still, with apologies to Cracker, what the world needs is another gritty vampire movie like I need a hole in the head.

  • Jan. 22, 2010, 8:02 a.m. CST

    Decent directing; Great photography; script is meh

    by blakindigo

    But, better than "Friday the 13th" remake and "Final Destination 4" by far.

  • Jan. 22, 2010, 8:02 a.m. CST

    tBlasphemy

    by blakindigo

  • Jan. 22, 2010, 8:03 a.m. CST

    The only Blasphemy is the movie's story logic.

    by blakindigo

  • Jan. 22, 2010, 8:15 a.m. CST

    I dig the interview Beaks.

    by blakindigo

    Super 35 vs Anamorphic is always a good topic.

  • Jan. 22, 2010, 8:52 a.m. CST

    Looking for Legion reviews

    by Knightsong

    These guys had one of the first ones I found. Doesn't sound to great, unfortunately. www.cinemaassault.com

  • Jan. 22, 2010, 12:01 p.m. CST

    Bettany as Aloysius Pendergast

    by Guy Gaduois

    in the Preston and Child Pendergast series. (Still Life With Crows could be great, though They could start by remaking the Relic and have Pendergast in it and have it not suck.) That would be nice. In my world renowned expertise at casting, Bettany is perfect. Somebody do this well, or not at all, I'd be happy. <p> Billboe Fett's post was Tremendous. Yes and more, please. Well done, sir.

  • Jan. 22, 2010, 5:19 p.m. CST

    I dunno why, but ...

    by HongKongCavalier

    ... whenever I read rants on the talk backs the same four words repeat themselves over and over: "can" "do" "can't" "critique". And, for the record, isn't hard to call someone an idiot for liking something you didn't when you paid to see it too?

  • Jan. 22, 2010, 7:36 p.m. CST

    Just saw LEGION at a preview last night...

    by mintoncard

    One of the worst movies I have seen in the last five years. Seen the trailer? Then you have seen EVERY good part in the film. One-dimensional characters, WAY too much ridiculous dialogue, no real plot or script, and sub-par special effects. I mean seriously, at one point an angel flips a switch on a mace and it starts rotating like it has a motor in a it! Really?? So, God equips his angels with motorized weapons?? Oh, also, God has his angels wear choker necklaces. Wow. Also, after Charlie (the pregnant girl) has the baby, she looks like nothing really happened about 10 minutes after the baby pops out. Hardly a bead of sweat. She hops off the table and is like, "ok, what do we do now?" with her hair all perfectly styled. It was painful to watch. Whomever green-lit this movie out to be slapped.

  • Jan. 22, 2010, 7:39 p.m. CST

    Instead...

    by mintoncard

    See Book of Eli. It was FAR superior.

  • Jan. 22, 2010, 9:51 p.m. CST

    when i saw the initial teaser...

    by Kammich

    ...attached to D9, I think... it kicked my ass. looked to have just the right blend of horror to slapstick, and the cast was all kinds of cool. but the 6.5 million tv spots since then all recycle the same exact money shots that initially caught me, so that has me concerned. looking like a rental for me. plus, i can't stand the immediate cries of "blasphemy" anytime a film paints god in a different light whatsoever. its just annoying.

  • Jan. 22, 2010, 9:52 p.m. CST

    good interview, by the way

    by Kammich

    i thought it covered Legion just fine, but its obvious that Beaks's set visit has him very excited for Priest. plus, i'm a nerd for anything pertaining to cinematography discussion, and Beaks consistently delivers the goods on here.

  • Jan. 22, 2010, 9:57 p.m. CST

    WOW - Save your money - huge dissapointment

    by Russman

    It doesn't even get close to what it could've been. I went in with some hope and faith and ... blah.

  • Jan. 22, 2010, 11:09 p.m. CST

    Gabriel

    by MrLongbaugh

    Gabriel is a pretty decent flick considering it was made for about $250,000.

  • Jan. 23, 2010, 2:19 a.m. CST

    cool as hell LOST promo

    by BillboeFett

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v =4XBtWYBPTns </BR> or http://bit.ly/m0wXT

  • Jan. 23, 2010, 2:21 a.m. CST

    LOST flight 815 crash in REAL TIME, done in 24 style!

    by BillboeFett

    Damon Lindelof tweeted this from youtube, the editing is fucking brilliant: </BR> http://www.youtube.com/watch?v =MKcKtjrL5bc </BR> or http://bit.ly/qlgxY

  • Jan. 23, 2010, 4:29 p.m. CST

    All angel apocalypse movies...

    by spud mcspud

    ...Are to be judged against the standard, which is THE PROPHECY. And the fact that it was written by Greg Widen, who wrote HIGHLANDER, just goes to show that this could have been his take on where the highlander mythos REALLY came from. Immortals = angels? Seraphim vs Nephilim?<P> But no, THE PROPHECY is the real Deal. Viggo is a fantastic Satan, all quiet menace and arrogance. Christopher Walken, a brilliantly nuanced Gabriel. Elias koteas in full effect. Virgina Madsen in full luminosity. THE PROPHECY is just great all round.<P> LEGION, IMHO, looks like shit - but in a fun, don't-take-it-at-all-seriously, six-pack-and-a-pizza Saturday night fare shit. It looks like the movie version of a 2000AD comic strip we haven't seen yet. And it COULD be fun. I mean, the last time we saw an old lady running round on a ceiling demonically possessed was in THE EXORCIST II: LEGION.<P> Ooooh. Coincidence? I see providence...

  • Jan. 23, 2010, 4:30 p.m. CST

    EXORCIST III, NOT II, obviously...

    by spud mcspud

    ...Before I get berated to death by The Pedantry.

  • Jan. 23, 2010, 4:32 p.m. CST

    PRIEST, on the other hand...

    by spud mcspud

    ...Was a great comic back in the mid-90s. Is that the PRIEST they made? And wasn't it Dark Horse who did PRIEST??<P> Hey, it was a long time ago. And I've slept since then....

  • Jan. 23, 2010, 4:36 p.m. CST

    Kammich - re blasphemy

    by spud mcspud

    I'm religious, but I enjoy movies that take a bit of Christian mythology - hell, do we REALLY think God's so humourless he'd get upset over a movie like LEGION? Fuck no! I like to think He's watching it like the rest of us, with a big grin on His face at how stupid it all is.<P> That said, if the theology doesn't work - as is the case with THE SECOND COMING TV series, or the PREACHER comic series, or obviously LEGION - then it needs rewriting and doing over. I mean, THE PROPHECY was stupid, but it made a kind of hokey sense - in a way it seems that LEGION sadly doesn't...<P> But I like a bit of blasphemy in my religious horror movies. Why the heck not?

  • Jan. 23, 2010, 5:02 p.m. CST

    lowered expectations really helped...

    by damfino_yanno

    I was hoping it would be a fun, campy flick, but those hopes were shot once I started reading the reviews about how much of a boring, ugly mess it was. But whaddya know, I actually found it to be a fun, campy movie. I mean, when there are lines like "No shark teeth, Pop!" I really don't care why angels wear shock collars. (It probably helped that I was in a theater filled with people who seemed to be sucking up the camp as much as I was.) It actually could have been a pretty decent movie if they worked it out more, and I agree with a lot of the complaints, but I had fun at it anyway. <p>And you know, I really hate not being able to recognize crap that everyone else sees, but I don't understand why all the reviewers were piling on Lucas Black so much. His character was kind of a dope, but I didn't have any problems with his acting. Certainly no worse than any of the others, who all had a lot of bad lines to deal with.

  • Jan. 23, 2010, 6:12 p.m. CST

    spud — How did "Preacher" not work?

    by blakindigo

    The sly and brutal commentary on the hypocrisy of blind religious allegiance was brilliant, IMO.

  • Jan. 23, 2010, 6:27 p.m. CST

    Sorry

    by Gidney

    But the movie is far more cool and subtle than you fanboys are making out. There's too much "let's piss on religious themes" groupthink in this commentary threat. In it's awkward way, sometimes too derivative granted, the movie did ask serious questions that, for example, Book of Eli dodged at the last minute. Think for a minute about *spoiler* that radio broadcast "there are pockets of resistance forming in..." If there is a God, that's why he loves us. Personally, I would've preferred if the baby hadn't been so important, just an example Michael chose to break the Plan's continuity and make his point to Him.

  • Jan. 24, 2010, 3:26 a.m. CST

    Legion was a total POS!!!

    by Powerring

    cartoony, unintentionally funny, idiotic biblical interpretation. This movie was a waste of time and money, it's garbage that does a piss-poor ripoff of parts of terminator and night of the living dead in a bold and unabashed level of crap.

  • Jan. 24, 2010, 6:04 a.m. CST

    LEGION is a bigger budgeted version of GABRIEL...

    by Monkey_King

    just like I AM LEGEND is a bigger budgeted version of I AM OMEGA which is a duplicate film. Question I'm asking is who's film was in the can first?

  • Jan. 24, 2010, 11:33 a.m. CST

    Legion sucked like one of Tiger Wood's Hos.

    by Stalkeye

    Great concept followed by very poor execution. One of the more memorable parts was "Gladys" and speaking of which, why would Angels turn humans into zombies?There is more plotholes than your average B-Movie. good action scenes but damn....I mean DAYUMM!<P>And don't get me started on the unborn child that will bring a balance of light to the world thus ending the angelic invasion..dumb ass writer. Me and my friend could come up with a better plot than this.fuck, my goddaughter could write a better story and she's only 3!<p>Hacks!!

  • Jan. 24, 2010, 11:35 a.m. CST

    Legion: 2 parts the prophecy,1 part Rio Bravo=Shitty rushed film

    by Stalkeye

    The VG Darksiders' story is waay better same goes for Bayonetta. Now those should get the movie treatment.

  • Jan. 24, 2010, 4:21 p.m. CST

    blakindigo - PREACHER's theology was ridiculous

    by spud mcspud

    The whole thing hinges on an entity born of an angel and a demon - both God's creation's - having more power than God due to having The Word (the power to make anyone do anything it asks, including GOD - WTF??), and then having God pussy out and leave Heaven, only to then get shot by a mortal guy who happened to have so much hatred in his soul when he died, that Hell froze over and that man - the Saint of Killers (who in any sane universe would be played by Lance Henriksen), who despite being mortal born, is somehow not only immortal now, but has a gun THAT CAN KILL GOD.<P> You can't tell me that makes sense. I too enjoyed the various satirical jabs at the Catholic Church, at blind religious allegiance, at the hypocrisy of certain churches (liked that Jesse wasn't immune to this hypocrisy - that was fair at least), and puncturing every vampire cliche they could ("Fuck no. Yeh're wankers, aren't yeh?"). There's a hell of a lot to recommend PREACHER - but like every cutting edge comics writer quivering with rage about religion (and particularly Christianity), they're too busy being righteously angry to ensure that the theology makes sense - which it doesn't. PREACHER's great, but the theology in it ain't worth shit.

  • Jan. 24, 2010, 4:52 p.m. CST

    Oh, and Beaks - HOARDING, not hording

    by spud mcspud

    Yes, I'm a Grammar Pedant. No, I am not ashamed.<P> HOARD - To gather lots of stuff together.<P> HORDE - As in a group of something; a "horde of Vikings", for example.

  • Jan. 24, 2010, 6:42 p.m. CST

    Oh, and Beaks - HOARDING, not hording

    by Powerring

    What about Whoreding? Isn't that what Tiger Woods does?

  • Jan. 24, 2010, 10:13 p.m. CST

    Avatar made more than double Legion

    by MST3KPIMP

    This is gettin scary

  • Jan. 24, 2010, 10:57 p.m. CST

    Avatar vs Legion

    by Powerring

    Avatar (controversially) has SOME flaws but it's robust entertainment. The legion has almost nothing right with it. Gabriel's uniform and hammer were about all, the rest was dogshit.

  • Feb. 4, 2010, 7:24 p.m. CST

    Was good, campy fun. Hiiiiighly enjoyable time with fave beverag

    by Wyndam Earle

    Ofoooejdjrr