It's going to take a while before we make sense of this tragedy. But here's everything we know right now.
It's going to take a while before we make sense of this tragedy. But here's everything we know right now.
I'm serious. Last night's Vampire Diaries was brilliant — except that the show once again set Bonnie up as a total awesome shitkicker, and then took it away again. WTF Vampire Diaries? Spoilers ahead...
After the nuclear power plant accident at Fukushima, scientists around the world went into high gear, trying to figure out how we could respond next time. And for chemists at Berkeley Lab, that means trying to develop a pill that people could take to neutralize radioactive elements in the environment.
The stunningly animated Mean Teddies reveals what stuffed toys get up to while children sleep. When nightmares threaten to run rampant, these plush creatures come to life to fight on behalf of their children.
There's a theory that fans of time travel stories like to toss around: Time travel not only hasn't been invented yet, it won't be in the future either. Otherwise, we'd see time-travelers popping up in history. Here's an alternate — and pretty unsettling — theory.
There's no better way to celebrate Halloween than by snuggling up with this mesmerizing PBS documentary, A Murder of Crows, first aired in 2010 and now available free online. We actually get to see some of the experiments that offered solid evidence that crows are breathtakingly smart tool users.
Uh-oh, here's the first look at Peeta's pleas from the Capitol. If you've read the book, you're already aware of what's going on here. But even without deeper knowledge, one thing is certain, Josh Hutcherson is a puppy pretending to be a human and we will do anything in our power to protect him.
And they sum up all our feelings.
I laugh in the face of fear -- when that face is a wonderful product of practical effects and is leaping out at me from the dark.
Haunted house attractions are a place of joy for me. When the terror of anticipation gives way to the horror of an actor in ghoulish makeup grabbing for me, my natural reaction is to laugh. This is not a disrespectful response, as if the actors and the haunt are silly for even trying to scare me, but one of pure happiness.
And I suspect many of you out there know precisely what I’m talking about.
Psychologists tell us laughter as a fear response is a defense mechanism. It provides a release valve for the tension built up from getting scared. Additionally, that laughter serves to signal to others that we’ve got this covered; not only are we not freaked out, but we are not a target for fear stimuli.
That explanation never felt quite right for me. Maybe it would if I were in actual danger, but not when roaming through an attraction, or watching a scary movie, for that matter. It isn’t as if I don’t get startled or freaked out but, just as a kid on Christmas morning might stare wide-eyed at the loot that’s appeared under his tree, I soak in the magic of a Halloween haunt with a goofy grin and a big giggle. I encounter the fear and love it.
So every year, I try to make it a point to visit multiple haunted house attractions during Halloween season. I covered a lot of ground, though consistently my two favorites are Universal Orlando’s Halloween Horror Nights and Eastern State Penitentiary’s Terror Behind the Walls in Philadelphia.
At the beginning of its 24th season, I visited HHN to check out its take on the Halloween movie franchise, Alien vs. Predator, From Dusk Till Dawn, The Walking Dead, an evil clown factory and a “dollhouse of the damned,” among others. The incredibly high production value and attention brings favorite scary films to life while also breathing life into entirely new and surreal settings. In between the eight houses, the experience continues through scare zones scattered in the streets with themes such as The Purge or a Bayou of Blood.
Want to know what it’s like to encounter Michael Myers as he emerges to slash through promiscuous teens and unsuspecting tourists? This is the place to be. For a haunt junkie, HHN is the equivalent to getting front-row seats to the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade and riding on the float with Santa (albeit a maniac, killer Santa).
Meanwhile, Terror Behind the Walls is located at the 185-year-old penitentiary (the first ever). Famously haunted (supposedly), the fortress takes up a city block, and the historic structure does the job of creeping out most people before they enter. There is a homegrown craftsmanship to the haunt that makes it a favorite to haunt fans. I especially love the decay and at-times pitch black setting of Detritus (imagine a green house tended by the devil) and The Workshop, where I managed to get a nail gun to my hand, shoved into a crawlspace and attacked with a chainsaw (it was worth signing the waiver allowing actors to touch me).
But like other joyful moments, the scares I faced this Halloween have become a part of me. They are life experiences, much as other holidays or celebrations. And though Halloween season is winding down, there is still time to make those moments at the haunts I mentioned, and others.
With that said, this year I wanted to create a photo album of sorts of my scare memories. It is grainy at times, with poor framing and captured while moving fast, but what follows is documentation of me being chased, grabbed, shambled toward and leapt at at the precise (or close to) instance of my Halloween 2014 scares.
I laughed in the face of fear, and took a picture …
We've been looking forward to Cartoon Network's miniseries Over the Garden Wall. Everything we've seen from this tale of two brothers lost in a strange forest has looked utterly whimsical. But this first chapter, which has been released online, is also a tad creepy.
There is good news on the Gambit movie front today. According to Deadline (via Collider), 20th Century Fox has hired screenwriter Josh Zetumer (the RoboCop remake) to pen the script for the film. But the really exciting revelation is that Zetumer will be working from a treatment written by legendary Marvel Comics writer Chris Claremont, who created the Ragin' Cajun in 1990 with artist Jim Lee and first introduced him in the pages of Uncanny X-Men, near the end of Claremont's still-unbeaten 16-year run on that book.
The plot of the movie remains a secret, but Channing Tatum is officially "attached," as they say in the business, to star. Gambit's only other live-action film appearance to date was in 2009's X-Men Origins: Wolverine, in which he was played by Taylor Kitsch, but we'll just move along and not talk about that.
As for Zetumer, he had a pretty large rock to roll up the hill with that RoboCop remake -- and actually didn't do such a bad job -- so we're open to seeing what he can do with Remy LeBeau, especially since he's working with material provided by Claremont.
Tatum said earlier this summer about the movie, "We’re gonna try to change up the superhero-type movie, maybe give us something a little different. In my opinion, Gambit is an outlier in the X-Men [universe], he’s not a good guy in a way. He smokes, he drinks, he’s chasing women, he’s a thief. I’m not like an X-Men head, but I just love him.”
There is speculation that Gambit will make a cameo in 2016's X-Men: Apocalypse before leading his own movie, but that remains a rumor for now. Meanwhile, are you glad to hear that the Gambit film is becoming a reality, and that Chris Claremont is involved in some capacity?
Magic: the Gathering is a game of epic fantasy at its core — but deep within the game's dank cellars, rotting tombs, and loathsome sewers lies a slimy, rotting heart of darkness. Here are our favorite artworks of demons, zombies, and other horrors from Magic's long history.
It’s hard to believe that, 20 years ago this week, the little sci-fi flick Stargate opened and went on to bank a solid, but not spectacular, box-office haul.
Who’d have guessed all those years ago that an inaugural trip to Abydos would span more than a decade of sci-fi awesomeness and one of the most beloved franchises this side of Star Trek and Star Wars? From the flagship television series Stargate SG-1 to its spinoffs Stargate Atlantis and Stargate Universe, that shiny circle has opened the door to more sci-fi adventures than we can count.
But even if we can’t recap the entire 242+ hours of ‘gate adventures, we do have a few (or a bit more than a few) favorite moments from all those episodes, movies and spinoffs. We’ve laughed, we’ve cried, and we’ve screamed at the television when it all finally had to end.
While we wait to see what original creator Dean Devlin cooks up for the upcoming Stargate reboot, enjoy a walk down memory lane. Here’s to 20 great years of ‘gate-ing, and here’s hoping for 20 more.
Hoping to escape from Cuba to the US, a father and daughter hop a fishing boat. But in this short horror film, their immigration journey may come close to literal hell.
We’d had an inkling DC would opt for a multiverse to separate the television and movie properties, and the casting of Ezra Miller as the big-screen version of The Flash confirmed it. But Arrow star Stephen Amell has a few qualms about the plan.
Amell, who stars in The CW’s acclaimed Arrow series as Oliver Queen/Green Arrow, chatted with the Wall Street Journal about Warner Bros.' decision to opt for a different Flash on the big screen (Grant Gustin currently stars as Barry Allen in The CW’s hit series). For Amell, he feels Gustin should have gotten the nod — and he said he’s still love to bring his version of Oliver Queen to the big screen.
Though he adamantly believes their small-screen versions could go toe to toe with Batfleck and the Man of Steel, Amell added he’s still excited to see where they take the characters in Justice League and beyond, with various interpretations of the age-old heroes.
Here’s an excerpt from his comments:
“Yeah. Of course. And I feel like it should be Grant doing the movie. But the important thing to remember is just because Grant Gustin plays the part of Barry Allen doesn’t mean Ezra Miller can’t also play Barry Allen. There can be different interpretations of the character. Anyone who is a fan of the comics knows the Flash character is one of the forces that leads to parallel universes. And who knows, they might find a fantastic actor to play Oliver Queen on the feature side who has a different take on the character. I’m certainly a departure from the typical Oliver Queen from the comic books. I just think that everybody needs to be patient with the whole thing. The fact that DC and Warner have announced all these comic book features is nothing but good for business.”
We’re with Amell on this one, and many of us here at Blastr have mixed emotions on the whole thing. On the one side (as I’ve argued before), DC is giving its properties room to breathe with their own self-contained universes and continuities (i.e. Constantine, Gotham, Flash/Arrow, Justice League films, etc.). But, as Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. has shown with the stellar Winter Soldier crossover, synergy can be a good thing if it’s handled correctly.
What do you think? Would you have preferred a big ol’ crossover?
(Via Wall Street Journal)
It's Halloween, and as you've noticed if you've been hanging around the site this week, we've been a little horror-obsessed. But while we've spent years getting freaked out at the movies (and loving every second of it), every fan of slashers, ghouls and ghosts always remembers his or her first -- that flick that grabbed you by the guts and wouldn't let go. In that spirit, and the spirit of the season, we're taking a look back at the very first films that scared us senseless. Check out our entries below, and let us know your picks in the comments!
I saw Universal Monster flicks, Hammer films, The Shining and The Exorcist when I was far too young, but those made me love horror without terrifying me too much. For the stuff that left an impression, it's largely about the '80s. The Children is not a great movie, but the low-budget horror about radiated zombie tykes is burned into my brain. The little monsters with black fingernails would kill adults through hugs, and may have also killed my desire to have children. But the Stephen King-penned "They're Creeping Up on You" chapter from Creepshow, directed by George A. Romero, still churns my stomach and makes me squirm. Romero scarred me when I saw Night of the Living Dead, but I've turned zombies into part of my job and love them so. But I am reluctant to even watch this cockroach horror story that shows a horde swarming around -- and bursting out of -- a germophobe's body.
I think the first horror movie that really scared me was Evil Dead 2. Up until then, all I'd really seen were cheesy old B-movies edited down for television. But one day my mom finally let me pick from one of the glorious-looking horror VHS tapes at the rental store, and Sam Raimi's classic is what I chose. It was like a roller-coaster, but full of weirdly-colored blood, decapitated dancers, cackling deer-heads and, smack in the middle, Bruce Campbell. As an adult, I see that it's more funny than scary, but as a kid, it had me hiding under my bed at night ... until the next day, when I'd watch it again, of course.
The first horror film that really scared me was A Nightmare on Elm Street. I was a kid when I was introduced to the shocking image of Freddy Krueger. In hindsight, he looks like a pizza-face with knives, but back then, he was my worst nightmare (pun intended). Villains like Jason Vorhees and Michael Myers lived in the physical world, and I could maneuver that. With Freddy, there was nowhere to hide. He owned your subconscious, which meant he could manipulate you without your knowing. Biologically, our bodies need rest for survival. You don't sleep, you die. But in this case, you do sleep, you die. It was a lose-lose situation. That's why A Nightmare on Elm Street's a film I still can't shake.
The first movie that freaked, and I mean really freaked me out, was a zombie flick. Sadly, I don't even remember the title of this little jewel (no, it wasn't) of a horror movie since it was ages and ages ago, but I still remember how it scared the living hell out of me! And I was pretty much scared with a capital S. I was about 12 at the time, and frankly, watching a horror movie alone with your little sister while your folks are out may seem like a truly excellent idea when you're a young teenager, but really, it's not. Even in broad daylight. The movie scared us so badly we had to stop it right before the end. Me and my sister still shiver (as well as laugh our arses off) at our first traumatic experience with the wonderful world of the living dead to this day.
The movie that first petrified me was WAY back in 1972 with the horror anthology Tales From the Crypt. This excellent British production, directed by Freddie Francis (The Evil of Frankenstein, Dracula Has Risen From the Grave), had five morality stories that delivered a series of serious nerve-jangling moments for a sheltered California Catholic kid. The skeletal motorcycle rider, a psycho Santa Claus, boozy Joan Collins, the old folks home razor-blade death corridor, Peter Cushing's rotting Arthur Grimsdyke corpse and a mushy, beating heart still haunt my dreams. I remember seeing newspaper ads with that frightening one-eyed skull draped in cobwebs and wanting more than anything to go see it. When my fun-loving alcoholic aunt agreed to take me, it wasn't without a jolt of apprehension as to what horrors this insane movie would bring. The movie passed by like a startling blur, but it was the devilishly twisted ending that grabbed me by the aorta, when the gathered group realized they were in hell and the stone slab slid aside to reveal a curtain of flames. The Crypt Keeper turns to the camera and asks, "Who's next? Perhaps you?" From that day on, or at least for a few weeks, I was on my best behavior for fear of ending up in smoking eternal damnation. It would be a while until I took in another dreaded PG-rated movie.
I grew up in the country, in a house far enough away from other houses that you felt very isolated at night. Even with all the outdoor lights on, you couldn't see into the fields beyond, but you could hear things out there, grass swaying and coyotes howling and even the occasional raccoon running up to the fence and peering through. All of those night sounds just beyond my vision were easy to ignore until I saw Night of the Living Dead (1968), and watched as dozens of zombies shambled up out of the darkness into the little halo of light created by that lonesome farmhouse. I knew it was an old black-and-white zombie movie, and very clearly not real, but it was too easy to walk out on my back porch and imagine something cold and lifeless stepping out of the shadows and reaching for me. I don't live in the country anymore, but that image still lives in my imagination.
The first movie that ever scared me was 1940's The Mummy's Hand, the first sequel to the 1932 classic starring Boris Karloff. Karloff did not appear as the ancient Imhotep in this one; the mummy's name was Kharis, and he was played in all his dusty, decaying glory by a guy named Tom Tyler. I was maybe 5 or 6 when I saw it on "Creature Features," one of the nightly syndicated movie packages that would run on a local TV station (WNEW) in New York City. I don't know why my grandmother, who was babysitting me, let me watch it, but my family was pretty cool about me watching and reading that kind of stuff. All I do know is that we were sitting there taking it in when they opened the sarcophagus and we got our first full look at Kharis' bandaged, wizened, very dead visage -- and it freaked me the hell out. I asked my grandmother to turn off the TV and suggested that it was time I go to bed -- imagine a 5-year-old wanting to go to bed! I don't remember what happened after that; I assume that grandma put me to bed ... but the image of the mummy was seared into my brain for the rest of my life.
Like Krystal, my first big scare was delivered courtesy of Freddy Krueger ... but the first Nightmare on Elm Street movie I saw was the third one, Dream Warriors. On USA. With all the really awful stuff edited out. Yeah, I'm kind of a wimp when it comes to scary movies. BUT, even given the restraints of late-night basic cable, this flick still managed to freak me out, particularly scenes like the one in which some poor sap has the veins ripped out of his body and used like marionette strings by Robert Englund's deep-fried dream murderer, or the one in which Taryn, the drug addict turned dream warrior, succumbs to her demons in the form of syringe's on the ends of Freddy's fingers. Shudder. That said, as much as A Nightmare on Elm Street III messed with my head, it did give me one lasting and beautiful gift: Its theme song, performed by Dokken, which has served as a seasonal anthem for me ever since. Happy Halloween!
It sounds like a plot for an Indiana Jones or Captain America film. But, during World War II, the self-portrait of Leonardo DaVinci was secretly moved from Turin to Rome for safekeeping from the Nazis. Legend says the gaze of DaVinci is so intense, that it can imbue onlookers with preternatural strength.
Science fiction and fantasy are full of great ideas — but some works in the genre are especially mind-expanding or educational. Which science fiction or fantasy novel made you feel smarter after you read it?
Deadspin Taylor Swift's 1989 Proves That "Pop" Doesn't Mean Anything Anymore | Gizmodo Virgin Galactic's SpaceShipTwo Has Crashed, One Pilot Confirmed Dead | Jalopnik The Ten Greatest Frankenstein Cars Ever Created | Kotaku Nothing Says Halloween Like People Screaming at Horror Games | Kinja Popular Posts
Most Halloween pumpkins would be content with a nice lid and a candle, but this famous little Star Wars droid gets the full remote-contolled treatment. Greg Aronowitz of Barnyard FX concocted this most-excellent R2-D2 jack-o'-lantern for Geek and Sundry's Halloweek Pumpkin Carving, melding together the worlds of Halloween and Star Wars to create what he aptly named "OCT-3.1." Not stopping there, Aronowitz then installed a radio-control unit to grant his hybrid creation life.
Take a look at his video below to see exactly how this lonely squash went from the local pumpkin patch to candy-crusted, motorized perfection ...
(Via Geek Tyrant)
Whenever a horror movie is released, the team behind it likes to start rumors of how haunted the shooting was. But sometimes the spooky, crazy stuff get so out of hand, producers actually don't want it mentioned. It's the latter occurrence upon which we are focusing here: Horror films with a cursed streak that's just too twisted to ignore.
Disaster struck high over the Mojave Desert this morning when Virgin Galactic's SpaceShipTwo exploded at 50,000 feet during a routine test flight and crashed onto the desert floor near Koehn Lake. Two crew members were aboard the spacecraft at the time of the incident. One death has been confirmed, and the second pilot, who was able to eject via parachute from the craft, is in critical condition with severe injuries. Seconds after main engine burn SpaceShipTwo experienced an "in-flight anomaly" and burst into pieces before tumbling to the ground below.
SpaceShipTwo is part of Virgin's project to take paying passengers into sub-orbital space for the price of a $250,000 ticket and has been under scrutiny recently as issues with its engines caused the project to go on hiatus for the past nine months. Today's catastrophic flight was an important one for Virgin with the concept of space tourism gaining momentum and a major test of its new rocket engine, which recently underwent a change in its fuel mixture, switching from a rubber-based compound to a plastic-based mix.
The FAA reported that "just after 10 a.m. PST ground controllers at the Mojave Space Port lost contact with SpaceShipTwo, an experimental space flight vehicle. The incident occurred over the Mojave Desert, shortly after the space flight vehicle separated from its lift vehicle, WhiteKnightTwo." An investigation is underway and no names of the pilots have been released.
With this week's unmanned Antares rocket explosion still on our minds and multiple private commercial enterprises trying to get paying passengers into sub-orbit, this is another shocking reminder of the inherent dangers of spaceflight. How severe of a setback do you think this recent tragedy is, and how will it affect further flights and programs?
Boyd Bushman was a senior scientist at Lockheed Martin, and before he died he wanted the world to know about all the classified data he'd gathered about aliens from top-secret sources at Area 51. So he did this final interview, complete with pictures.
The latest measurements of the hole in the Ozone layer over the Antarctic put it at approximately the size of North America. Though that's certainly still a considerably-sized hole at 9 million square miles, NASA reports that the overall measurement has been holding roughly steady since 2010.
As October comes to a close and Halloween finally arrives, it's time to pay our respects to those horror movies that either never made it to the screen or did not get there in the way that was originally intended.
The basis of this is actually some good news: Horror writer/director Clive Barker's 1990 movie, Nightbreed, has finally come out on Blu-ray this week in a "director's cut" that restores some 40 minutes of material to the film. Barker spent years trying to track down nearly an hour's worth of footage that the studio demanded be removed from his original cut. It was finally rediscovered, edited back into the movie and road-tested at some festivals last year, with revisions and fine-tuning leading to the version that arrived this week. It's a much better, richer and frankly more coherent movie as a result, and an important find for both genre and Barker fans (more on it below).
But many "lost" films don't have that happy ending: They're either abandoned for good or released in some mutated form that loses sight of the original goals. Here are 12 such movies, some of which did turn out drastically different and some of which were never realized at all.
Robots are poised to eliminate millions of jobs over the coming decades. We have to address the coming epidemic of "technological unemployment" if we're to avoid crippling levels of poverty and societal collapse. Here's how a guaranteed basic income will help — and why it's absolutely inevitable.
A new supernova has been discovered in the bright Virgo galaxy M61. It was discovered Wednesday by Koichi Itagaki of Japan, and at a magnitude of 13.6, it could soon become visible in smaller telescopes. Today it was confirmed as a Type Ia-pec supernova. More to come as we learn more!
We’ve been waiting a while to find out what’s up with that reboot of genre classic The Crow, and the series’ original creator James O’Barr has a lot of new intel to share.
O’Barr, who created the original comic that Alex Proyas’ seminal 1994 film was based on, chatted with Korsgaard’s Commentary about how things are developing with the new version of the film. Instead of a remake of the first film, O’Barr says that likely director F. Javier Gutierrez is planning a “page-for-page adaptation” of the original comic, with Luke Evans (Dracula Untold) in the starring role.
O’Barr has a solid take on how they plan to redo The Crow without treading on what Proyas has done before, and it sounds like he’ll have a good bit of input on everything from the script to the soundtrack (see: Joy Division, The Cure). Check out some choice excerpts from the interview below:
“We’re not remaking the movie, we’re readapting the book. My metaphor is that there is a Bela Lugosi Dracula and there’s a Francis Ford Coppola Dracula, they use the same material, but you still got two entirely different films. This one’s going to be closer to Taxi Driver or a John Woo film, and I think there’s room for both of them – part of the appeal of the Crow comics after all is that they can tell very different stories after all …
Brandon Lee was a friend, and I’d never do anything to hurt his legacy. Eric Draven was a creation of the movie – if you read the comic, Eric and Shelley never have their last names revealed. Hopefully, this is one area the new movie being more faithful to the comic will come into play, and Eric won’t be going by Eric Draven in the new film. Luke Evans may play Eric, but Brandon Lee will forever be Eric Draven …
Javier, Luke and I went to the studio and said we won’t do this unless all three of us do it together. I said if you want me involved, this is what I need, I want control of the soundtrack, like with the first one, I want a voice on all the casting, and I want to be able to give my two cents on the script and the characters, and they agreed to everything. I think the studio understands that if they want a Crow ‘franchise’, they have to get it right. We’re hoping to begin production later this month, and start shooting in the spring.”
It’s taken a while to get to this point, but we’re glad to hear production could ramp up in a matter of weeks. Once that starts, we’re hopeful they can actually draw a bit closer to hitting that proposed spring shooting date. Do you think this sounds like a good approach?
Tom Voigt knows absolutely everything about the Zodiac Killer, the real-life murderer featured in the movie Zodiac. Neither cop nor crackpot, Voigt is certain that he's amassed almost enough evidence to solve the decades-old case very soon.
Thought you caught every single meta-reference in Drew Goddard's fantastic horror feature Cabin in the Woods? Well now is the time to double check, because this video lays it ALL out.
This is a male musk deer, knowing for growing fangs during the breeding season. A recent survey by the Wildlife Conservation Society confirmed that Kashmir musk deer, one of seven related Asian species, still live in Afghanistan's Nuristan Province, some 60 years after its last recorded sighting.
A community paralyzed with fear, not knowing when an unseen presence will claim its next victim. Are we describing an epidemic or a supernatural predator? The similarity is not a coincidence in the horror story, The Legend of Sleepy Hollow, whose author, Washington Irving, fled a yellow fever outbreak in New York.
Marvel's Cinematic Universe is getting a hell of a lot bigger in the next 5 years , with new heroes joining the likes of Captain America and Iron Man in Cinemas. Don't know your Doctor Strange from your Doctor Who? Who the heck is Blackagar Boltagon? Here's your handy guide to Marvel's latest Silver Screen Superheroes.
Virgin Galactic's SpaceShipTwo experienced an "in-flight anomaly" shortly after takeoff this morning. The suborbital space plane was conducting its first rocket- powered test-flight since January . California Highway Patrol now reports one fatality and one major injury following the accident.
Happy Halloween, people! Tonight is the night — so paint on the makeup and get out your lattes and brooms, you Basic Witch. Here are the most jaw-dropping Halloween costumes we've found posted on the Internet this year.
Halloween music is one of the greatest gifts this time of year gives us. So we've compiled 50 of our favorite scary songs — but we're fully aware we're leaving out some of the greats. If we missed your favorite, or if you have a song that must, must, must be played today, let us know!
One of the staples of time travel stories is the idea that our heroes will visit earlier geological periods in Earth's history. Of course — because they'll want to see dinosaurs with ostrich feathers and giant millipedes. But they generally forget something very important about Earth's past.
We have a winner. You may think that you've seen pictures of the most impressive Jack-O-Lanterns this Halloween season, but nothing could top this pumpkin illuminating a replica of the famed Rosetta Stone, which enabled scholars to finally translate Egyptian hieroglyphics.
Happy Halloween! There's one extra Friday in this month — just enough time to sneak in one more dark story for this dark time of year.
A pair of Russian scientists are proposing a radical new propulsion technique that would accelerate a rocket while in flight, by using a ground-based laser. Should it work, it could push aircraft to go beyond Mach 10.
Every month, Netflix removes some movies and shows from its always-popular Watch Instantly streaming service, and other movies and shows take their places. Whenever that happens, and a healthy crop of genre flicks just happens to be heading to the service, we like to give you a little heads-up, because we want you to enjoy your time on the couch.
In November, Netflix has decidedly to -- a bit puzzlingly -- add several new horror titles to the mix, including one that left the streaming service just before the Halloween season began. That's bad timing, but you might still be coasting on horror fumes, so have at them if you like. Plus, we've got one of the most underrated superhero movies ever, a celebrated new post-apocalyptic thriller, an indie drama with a surreal twist, an old Disney fantasy for the kids and more.
Check out what's coming to Netflix in November in the gallery below.
(Via Screen Crush)
Fantasy epics are full of weapons with mystical powers and strange destinies. It makes sense — everybody loves a weapon with some cool attributes. But as fantasy has grown, you see the same ideas over and over. And here are 10 story ideas about mystical weapons that have been done to death.
When you grow up in Asgard, certain Earth customs might seem perplexing. And when Thor is in the US for Halloween for the first time, it's a bit of a disaster.
Before Daniel Radcliffe's latest new movie, Horns, came out in theaters, it was already available to watch on Amazon Instant. And so were four other horror movies. So, I watched all of 'em.
Going to the movies sure is expensive. Thankfully, for those of us who are cheap shut-ins, there is an alternative in the form of Amazon Instant, which occasionally makes movies available even when they are still in theaters. It costs less than going out, especially if you split the cost with a friend, and you can get snacks for non-theater prices.
So, armed with Maple Bacon Popcorn, Sour Patch Kids and a bunch of booze, I took on the five horror movies listed under the "Catch it while it's in theaters" section of Amazon. Were any of them worth it?
Let's find out.
The (4.5-) million dollar question is: Should it be?
The Association for the Recognition of Excellence in SF & F Translation has announced it is officially being dissolved, due to the time and effort required to keep the awards going on an amateur basis. “We still very much believe in the need to promote science fiction and fantasy in translation, and hope that in due course new people will come forward and a new award be created. The Directors will continue to do whatever they can as individuals to continue the work of the Association.”
For more details on the Awards and the winding up of the Association, see the SFFT Awards Site.
A team of 17 divers from the NOAA has returned from a 33-day mission to remove marine debris from Papahānaumokuākea Marine National Monument in Hawaii, one of the largest marine conservation areas in the world. You're not going to believe the amount of crap they had to pull out.
Happy Halloween, people who aren't going to sleep tonight!
In Horns, Ig Perrish grows a pair of horns, and gains a superpower that's also a terrible curse. In Joe Hill's novel, this turns into an exploration of the darkness in human nature, including misogyny and jealousy. But the new movie version, while fun, never brings enough depth to support its misanthropic premise.
Just what are all those tiny, swirling dots swooping gracefully around the Earth? Are those pinprick points the ghosts of far away stars? Perhaps they are the gaseous remains of some far away nebula? Or, maybe, it's just a giant orbital swarm of trash.
We live in a pretty informal society these days, in which nobody sends thank-you notes or postcards anymore. But back in the day it was expected to receive correspondence on fine stationery and deluxe paper around the holidays, and Halloween was the perfect time to reconnect with lost loves or distant relatives. Nowadays we feel all warm and fuzzy if we even get a generic birthday text!
In a nod to more mannerly times, check out this kooky collection of antique postcards, greeting cards and invitations celebrating the most haunted month of the year. The talented group of long-forgotten artists and writers who created these whimsical wonders captured the eerie essences of Halloween to perfection. Some of these iconic images are etched in our superstitious brains as the artful epitome of a festive All Hallows Eve. We're not sure exactly what strange shenanigans these odd imps, crimson devils, leering moons and prancing pumpkin-people are causing, but rest assured it's all in the spirit of the season. Have a look back, and Happy Halloween!
Is Halloween complete without some mysterious lights in the sky? Learn the theory behind the Hessdalen Lights, and why the reality might be scarier than visiting UFOs.
Your first Halloween treat has arrived: J.K. Rowling has released a brand new short story all about the character you love to hate, Dolores Umbridge.
Let's plays of horror games are popular for good reason: watching someone else lose it over a jump scare can be hilarious, and, in case you're a huge coward (like me), even therapeutic. There have been lots of really good videos over the years—and what better time to take a look back than Halloween?
Watching a movie is like playing roulette: we have no idea which ending we'll be seeing. Will it be the original, or another version inspired by a failed test screening, or "creative differences"? Sometimes the change is for the better; sometimes not. Here, we rank 13 alternate horror film endings from worst to best.
For the past year, archaeologists have been working in a 2,000-year-old tunnel at the ancient Mexican city of Teotihuacan. The dig has yielded thousands of new relics and the discovery of three chambers that could hold more important finds.
Here's a tantalizing trailer for a deluxe new book published this week featuring the astonishing array of award-winning costumes worn in the original Star Wars Trilogy. From Tusken Raider tunics and Jawa robes to Vader's cape and Boba Fett's armor, Star Wars Costumes: The Original Trilogy is a $60, 226-page coffee-table volume examining the artists, designers and costumers who created the thousands of outfits seen on screen when the three films were first released from 1977-1983. Author Brandon Alinger was granted an all-access pass to the Lucasfilm Archives at Skywalker Ranch in California to photograph and research the history of these iconic costumes.
Try on this fashionable teaser for the premium, large-format book, which also includes interviews with the actual costumers, original sketches, production notes and concept art.
What would you give to rummage through the hallowed racks of these storied Star Wars threads?
(Via Geek Tyrant)
Now that they’ve finally shown off a ton of cool footage from Avengers: Age of Ultron, Marvel has let Tony Stark loose to open up about where we’ll find Iron Man in his next big-screen appearance.
As anyone who saw Iron Man 3 knows, the events of The Avengers left Stark in a very dark place that it took an entire film to work through and regain his confidence in the wake of stopping an alien invasion. Not surprisingly, Robert Downey Jr. says Age of Ultron will continue Stark’s journey as he takes the next step in his approach to save the world.
Here’s what Downey said in an in-house interview with Marvel about his character:
“I thought that the third Iron Man was about [Tony] transcending his dependence on the merits of continuing to wear your wound. That was what [director] Shane [Black] and I thought was the real win, that he throws that thing that had become a dependency away. Because that was the question I was always asking, why doesn’t he get those shards out [of his chest]? It’s dangerous.
It reminds me of all that stuff, particularly as you get a little older or if you have any existential queries whatsoever. Why aren’t I dealing with that which is going to destroy me any second anyway? The armor was kind of an extension of that. There were so many suits, but I think he realizes that making all the suits in the world, which is what he had been doing, still didn’t [help him]. His focus [now] is more on how can we make it so that there’s no problem to begin with. That there’s a bouncer at our planet’s rope. That’s the big idea.
Now I feel rather than him putting it all down, he was saying, ‘all right, job one roughly taken care of. And I think job two [is to] go back east and get people organized and do what I can. I love that Tony’s not one of those super heroes who’s ever lost his money. [laughs] Which is great. He’s never lost his dough … [Tony’s] the guy who is the technologically possible super hero, [so] Joss is leaning on me a little bit, like, ‘if this is credible to you, even if you snark about it a little bit, then other people are going to buy it.’ And I'm like, ‘that’s true.’”
We can’t wait to see where Stark goes next, and we’re glad Downey will be sticking around for at least a few more Marvel movies. Stark’s journey has been one of the greatest aspects of the Marvel Cinematic Universe, and we can’t wait to see where he ends up by the time Age of Ultron wraps up.
What do you think is coming next for Tony Stark?
The disappearance of pilot Amelia Earhart has been one of the greatest mysteries of modern history, and it turns out we likely found a piece of her plane on an island 23 years ago — but didn’t actually realize it until now.
Researchers have pretty much been trying to figure out what happened to Earhart ever since she went missing on July 2, 1937, in the Western Pacific. Many believe she might’ve crashed on the island of Nikumaroro, and in 1992 a search team found a piece of metal that seemed to be dated to the era when her Model 10 Electra plane was built.
The only problem? No one could figure out — exactly — where the 19x23-inch piece of metal would’ve fit on the plane. It was the right material, but it didn’t match up with any conceivable component from the plane. So, after years of trying to figure it out, the team finally decided they couldn’t actually prove it was from Earhart’s plane — another dead end.
But, as Wired notes, the answer finally came after taking another pass at photos of Earhart and her Electra before the infamous flight. What’d they find? A shiny metal patch covering up a specially made window specific to her plane. With that new piece of intel, the team was able to compare the recovered piece of metal to the flap on Earhart’s plane — and it was a perfect match.
Here’s how Richard Gillespie of the International Group for Historic Aircraft Recovery described the significance of the find:
“It’s like a fingerprint. This is the first time we’ve ever found something we can link directly to Earhart’s aircraft. And we’re going to treat it as a piece of her aircraft.”
The team plans to return to the island in 2015 for additional searches and research. According to Gillespie, he believes Earhart may have made an emergency landing on the island and survived for a time — but after that, no one knows what happened. Of course, theories abound on Earhart’s fate, and this latest (apparent) find only adds more mystery and questions than it does answers.
What’s your theory on Earhart’s disappearance?
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