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Why the Battle of Winterfell on ‘GoT’ was a disappointment



The Battle of Winterfell should have been the battle to end all battles. Instead, it was just… meh.

Don’t get me wrong: I enjoyed the White Walker v. Winterfell face-off just fine. The aerial shots were stunning, the pacing was heart-wrenching, the scope was unbelievable, and the episode was overall very entertaining. If this were any other franchise, I’m sure I would have been blown away.

But, this is Game of Thrones.

With high-stakes conflicts like the Battle of the Blackwater and the Battle of the Bastards (and the major losses that came with them) in recent memory, the surprisingly cheery Battle of Winterfell failed to deliver much of what makes Thrones so typically phenomenal.

And with only three episodes left in the series, that letdown couldn’t come at a worse time.

The stakes were surprisingly low
From the Red Wedding to the Destruction of the Great Sept of Baelor, Game of Thrones has made its name on devastating plot developments amid ruthlessly high stakes. As a result, every major character walking away from the one battle we’ve been preparing eight years for largely unscathed wasn’t a victory, so much as a disappointment.

Sure, I’m sad about Theon, Lyanna, Beric, Jorah, Melisandre, and Edd as much as the next fan. They were all very cool B-characters whom I will remember fondly and miss in Thrones’ final three episodes. But their deaths were hardly surprising — let alone impactful enough to carry the entire episode.

The fact that not one of the perilously-positioned main cast members faced their demise in the most highly-anticipated conflict of the series feels markedly un-Thrones.

Daenerys, Jon, Drogon, and Rhaegal escaped a never-ending sequence of close calls. Sam, Gilly, and little Sam shockingly survived the White Walker horde. The Stark siblings remain strong. Even Ghost made it out alive.

Of course, I didn’t want to lose any of these characters — but I did want to feel something during that 90-minute fight to the finish.

Thrones is notorious for serving up ugly cries on a Valyrian steel platter. Unfortunately, the low-stakes of the Battle of Winterfell made me care about it (and the remainder of the series) a whole lot less.

The White Walkers turned out to be super easy to beat 
Perhaps the genuinely astonishing death of the Night King could have made up for the Battle of Winterfell’s dissatisfying body count — if only his and his army’s demise hadn’t been so anticlimactic.

Yes, I was thrilled that Arya was the one to save The Seven Kingdoms. But her attack on the Night King played out more like a Mortal Kombat takedown than the ultimate bombshell in a world-renowned, eight-season series.

For all the “dragon glass this” and “Valyrian steel that,” the many hours of strategizing around the Battle of Winterfell came down to a character leaping onto screen out of nowhere, knife in hand at the exact right time.

Following the seven seasons it took to get all of these incredible fighters into one castle, the big battle didn’t end up meaning all that much. A single stab and the series’ biggest bad turned into snowglobe filling, while the rest of his army daisy-chained through a hyper-convenient self-destruct sequence.

It was a badass victory, but not exactly worthy of all the hype that led up to it.

So, uh… what now?
All that being said, the finale of Game of Thrones cannot be adequately assessed until we are at the bitter end. With three episodes to go and an intense Cersei confrontation coming into sight, Thrones still has plenty of time to offer diehard fans the epic finale they’ve been hoping for — devastating deaths and all.

Here’s hoping that when those final credits roll, fans will be satisfied and the stakes restored.

Source: Mashable

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Review – Hellboy (2019)



Reboots are a strange thing. Hated and reviled, there are certainly more instances of them NOT working as opposed to winning what should be a built-in audience over. Horror, in particular, is a hard sell. We’ve had our major franchises get the treatment and there are plenty more in the works (Child’s Play). While a vast majority of them stalled and sunk (2010’s A Nightmare on Elm Street, anyone?) a few soared (2017’s IT). 

The Hellboy property straddles a line that has often left it languishing with moviegoers. It’s a superhero film that has far less emphasis on the chiseled chin and cheekbones of the superman archetype and more focus on the idea of purpose, destiny and ultimately what to do with a power that defines you, yet betrays everything you thought you knew.  For superhero fans it falls mighty far left of most conventions and is hard to pigeonhole into the tight vinyl and playboy-come-philanthropist roles that have become the staple of the industry. For horror fans, again, it represents a dark fantasy with a moral compass and heart that truly belongs in the pages of a panel-to-panel graphs novel, even if the themes are decidedly those of monster movies with fangs, and ones devoid of capes.

The Del Toro Hellboy films, although not financial successes per se’ were character-defining action set-pieces that proved Del Toro’s visions could adeptly be overlaid on an existing property.. and WORK. Those two films are as rewatchable for me as most of the MCU is for a lot of fans. They have heart and soul and hint at a larger world that is both terrifying and fascinating.

2019’s Hellboy suffered the critical and financial deathblow it did, I believe, based not on it trying to emulate the Del Toro films, OR even trying to distance itself. Quite simply, 2019’s Hellboy was its own vision, and although it it might have landed sour on the lips and eyes of the masses, was, in this reviewers opinion, a whole sloppy, stinky ham-fisted SHIT-TON OF FUN.

Harbour dissolves completely into the role and much like Perlman when he donned the red makeup and horns, there is never a moment when you are watching the actor and not the character. There is as much heart and ultimately, self loathing present here as in the original iteration and it goes a long way to endearing ourselves to the titular character once the primary story arc gets under way.

This story arc, like most superhero faire, both time tested and decidedly conventional, is about the end of the world as we know it, both metaphorically and literally. An ancient Queen (Mia Jovovich) is resurrected to exact her vengeance on the humans that put her into the ground prematurely… in several pieces. This plot, like so many that has come before it is not altogether new OR, in most cases nowadays, all that engaging…WHICH…interestingly brings me to the crux of why I enjoyed Hellboy as much as I did: Sometimes, you gotta enjoy the destination, in spite of the journey.

Hellboy hits the ground running and not only do we see a number of different locations but we see so much in the span of 2 hours that if I did have a complaint, it is also one that falls squarely on the shoulders of its main strength; Hellboy rarely takes time to stop and breathe, moving at such a pace that the 2 hours seldom takes a moment to linger with our characters. It is, however a small price to pay to see a Hellboy film that includes Hellboy fighting a masked vampire wrestler in Tijuana, a free-for-all throwdown with bloodthristy giants and BUCKETS of blood as London sees an apocalyptic hell-on-earth complete with monstrous hell-beasts literally wearing dead humans as leg-warmers (do I shit you? No, indeed I shit you not)

Harbour, McShane and company give us a very different vision of the character and his world, let’s just hope they’re given a chance to expand upon it.

0 recommendationsPublished in Exclusives, Featured, Movie Reviews, News, Reviews

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Behind the Scenes

They’ll Steal Your Skin! New Clip and Stills from ‘Shed’



You had your chance to be you. Their turn.
SHED is an independent horror movie with skin-stealing monsters. But really, it’s about love.

A tiny crew of lunatics made SHED in Columbia, South Carolina in late 2018 … during a hurricane. SHED is bloody, sexy, weird and transgressive. Teaser attached!

This is definitely a movie for gorehounds not to miss.”
— Without Your Head

There is a feeling of otherworldliness here, a dreamlike feel that is immediate.”
— The Rotting Zombie

The film doesn’t shy away from skin.”
— Voices From the Balcony

Written, directed, produced & edited by David Axe, writer & producer of The Theta Girl. Starring Mike Amason & Sanethia Dresch. Effects by Lisa Ashworth & Brandon McIver. Music by Matt Akers.

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Game of Thrones petition: Over 700, 000 fans demand season 8 remake



Over 700, 000 fans of the popular television show, ‘Game of Thrones’ have called for a remake of what they termed “a disappointing last season”.

News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the fans are signing a petition titled ‘Remake Game of Thrones Season 8 with competent writers’.

The petition had garnered 736, 080 signatures at the time of this report on Friday, and was gaining more supporters by the second.

The petition read, “David Benioff and D.B. Weiss have proven themselves to be woefully incompetent writers when they have no, source material to fall back on. This series deserves a final season that makes sense.”

HBO’s ‘Game of Thrones’, which was adapted from George R.R. Martin’s ‘A song of fire and ice’, started outpacing the series of novels in season six.

After the show was on hiatus for all of 2018, the premiere of season eight in April was the most-watched one-day event in HBO’s more than four-decade history.

A lot of fans have described the season as underwhelming and a poor finale to a great show. Among the numerous issues, fans complained about the poorly lit ‘Battle of Winterfell’ in episode three.

They also complained about the inconsistent storylines, poor character arcs and were outraged when the otherwise carefully shot series accidentally left a paper coffee cup in episode four.

HBO acknowledged that the presence of the disposable cup in the scene was a mistake, and later edited it out of the episode.

In the penultimate episode of the series, which aired May 12, Daenerys executed Lord Varys before wiping out King’s Landing and most of its population, even after the bells of surrender sounded.

NAN reports that many thought the massacre was completely out-of-character for Daenerys — or at the very least needed more of a build-up.

‘Game of Thrones’ has had an average of 43 million viewers per episode which is expected to rise as the final episode airs on Sunday.

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