Saturday, 14 January 2012 Written by Ivan Radford
If you've seen David Fincher's Dragon Tattoo, the opening credits probably blew you away with their angry, sub-Bond style and loud cover of Led Zeppelin's The Immigrant Song by Trent Reznor and Karen O. At the very least, they should have made a strong impression, presuming you don't already think that it was the best title sequence of the whole year.
Now, you can watch those Dragon Tattoo opening credits online - thanks to Tim Miller and Blur Studio's superb design, it's 154 seconds of your life that you won't regret losing.
Yet to make your mind up about your favourite titles from the past 12 months? Read on for the top 5 opening credits of 2011.
Friday, 23 December 2011 Written by Ivan Radford
It doesn't seem like there's much people can do to stop movie piracy. As someone who used to work in a cinema, on the rare occasion when we did catch someone camming a film (get me all down with the kids' terminology), even when we'd removed them from the screen, we couldn't keep them on the premises.
And so piracy just keeps going. And I keep dissing it to my peeps in the street. Piracy sucks. Yeah. You suck, piracy. And your mum too. Piracy's mum sucks.
That doesn't seem to be making much of a difference, though. This year, things seems to be getting even more ridiculous, with people now pirating trailers. Actually taking video cameras into cinemas to record two-minute preview clips - a behaviour that's being encouraged by over-excited fans.
Prometheus. The Dark Knight Rises IMAX prologue. The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo. All trailers pirated in cinemas way before their release dates and then shared around the internet. Not to sell for profit or save on money (almost understandable with a full film when you consider that legal downloads are up to 50% more expensive than DVDs). These are promoted by people just to get more traffic to an internet site, which relies upon the film industry to survive in the first place.
Daft anti-piracy adverts playing up the criminal charges (in my possibly-incorrect understanding, it's often a civil offence) or making outrageous terrorist claims don't help with the debate much. Not just because they muddy the legal water, but because in most cases they simply make the anti-piracy campaign seem more laughable. Do you remember that one from the 1990s with the poker-wielding overweight demon booming "The pirates are out to get you"? Or the one that starts "You wouldn't steal a handbag"?
To quote Ed Byrne:
Other ad campaigns, where movie stars thank the audience personally for supporting the film industry, are more along the right lines. And I include in that this new short film from the National Film and Television School called The Last Cinema.
NFTS graduate Jae-ha Myung and his producer Andrew Start were commissioned by the Film Distributors Association to create this look at a "devastated near-future world in which unchecked piracy has brought about the end of cinema". It's something different, it's a bit creative and stylish and it's exactly the kind of thing the industry should be releasing instead of that demented fat man cackling into a fire. It even has John Hurt doing a voiceover.
Read on to watch it.
Competition - The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo Poster
Monday, 19 December 2011 Written by Ivan Radford
A quick last-minute Christmas competition for all you Advent Calendar openers - the chance to win this poster for The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo:
(Piano not included.)
Yes, you can win this specific poster. Partly because it's Christmas and I'm feeling generous, but mostly because I went to London's @MouthTapedShut preview screening of David Fincher's very awesome film and accidentally picked up two posters on my way out.
If you would like to win this
accidentally-acquired leftover super-amazing (probably) limited edition Dragon Tattoo poster, simply email [email protected] with the name of the Dragon Tattoo star whose name has been jumbled up to make this phrase:
Helicopters Hmm Purr
Send your answers by 22:59 Monday 19th December (that's tonight). A winner will be picked at random.
Please include your postal address (UK only, ta) and your Twitter username, and who knows? If things turn out well, Santa might well dump the poster on your doorstep before Christmas Eve.
(Note: You cannot exchange the poster for a cash prize of £2.50, or whatever the Royal Mail delivery cost for a poster is.)
6 Things to Do on Boxing Day
Thursday, 15 December 2011 Written by Ivan Radford
You're stuffed full of food. You're tired of your presents. You know Westfield is too crowded to do any shopping. What can fill that Boxing Day void? Family? You saw them all yesterday. TV? Apart from Bugsy Malone (11am) and Home Alone (7pm) on Channel 4 - and the obligatory showings of The Wizard of Oz, Singin' in the Rain and a Harry Potter movie - there isn't much to watch. Unless you're prepared to stay up till 2am for that seasonal classic Vertigo on ITV.
So here are six things you can do to make sure Boxing Day isn't boring:
1. Blow up the Kremlin
It'll take your mind off the indigestion at least.
Wednesday, 14 December 2011 Written by Ivan Radford
Director: David Fincher
Cast: Rooney Mara, Daniel Craig, Stellan Skarsgard
David Fincher’s Dragon Tattoo was always going to have a lot to live up to – because of the guy at the helm, rather than Niels Arden Oplev’s previous film version of Stieg Larsson’s popular books. But Fincher announces his intention straight away, with an explosive opening credits sequence full of black liquid, computer keyboards and shattered female silhouettes.
It screams James Bond in an angry, foreign voice, establishing the titular Girl as the franchise’s lead figure. After Benjamin Button and The Social Network, this feels like Fincher back in Se7en territory. Grizzled, haunting and beautiful.
Friday, 09 December 2011 Written by Ivan Radford
Yes, after yesterday's epic trailer, there's ANOTHER video of The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo. This time, it's a video of the Dragon Tattoo press conference in Stockholm.
And once again, it's amazing that I'm still excited about seeing more of the film - even after watching a whole 8 minutes of the ruddy thing.
Talking to media folks in Sweden, David Fincher, Rooney Mara and Stellan Skarsgard spoke about the making of Fincher's Dragon Tattoo adaptation. Here are 5 things we learned from the Dragon Tattoo press conference:
1. Rooney Mara Is a Coat Hanger
"My casting rules are simple," says Fincher. "You're looking for someone to hang a character on."
2. Lisbeth Salander Is the Next Tony Hawks
"I was thrown into it quite fast," Rooney Mara explains of her sudden casting as the novel's hacker heroine. "There was a lot of physical work... The motorcycle training. The skateboarding. The kickboxing." Skateboarding? If we get to see her pull a 50-50 grind and a heel-flip on the Stockholm streets, I am so there. (I'm also now hoping for a Tony Hawks-style video game franchise.)
3. David Fincher Does 40 Takes of Each Shot
Stellan Skarsgard explains how the shoot lasted a whole year and why it felt like it went on forever. "When I met David, he said "This is not going to be fun." He went "I do 40 takes of each set up..." But when you work with David, you feel that you try to get further in each take." 40 takes of Swedish bum rape? That's pretty hardcore workmanship.
4. Sweden Is Exotic
"For me, it was in this exotic place..." says Fincher. All that Swedish bum rape has probably gone to his head.
5. There's a Bit of Lisbeth in All of Us
"That feeling of being marginalised or held back by people in a position of power," comments Mara, "people can relate to that." I certainly can. Well, that's my excuse for my tattoo of The Moomins, anyway.
Read on to watch the full video of the Dragon Tattoo press conference.
Thursday, 08 December 2011 Written by Ivan Radford
Watch this 8 minute trailer for David Fincher's The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo.
And now marvel at the fact that you can't wait to see the rest of the 157 minutes.
For more on David Fincher's Dragon Tattoo, head this way to see the trailer - and for all the pretty new Dragon Tattoo stills.
You can now head this way to read our The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo review
Sunday, 04 December 2011 Written by Ivan Radford
It's cold outside, it's dark by 5pm and you need something to shove on the stereo to keep the family warm.
This isn't it.
These are the rather excellent tracks from The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo - everyone's favourite Boxing Day treat for 2011 - that have been released as a free sampler by Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross (much like the five track free EP for Social Network). You can read more about the pre-ordering of the soundtrack and the ridiculous number of other versions planned to hit the digital shelves over at Wired.
Anyway, back to these seven tracks. They're chilling, upsetting and have chimes in them. So in a way, they're the best Christmas music you could choose for your living room. Presuming you're a twisted parent with a penchant for traumatising small children.
What better, then, for our first Christmas playlist in our Advent Calendar? (The others are less disturbing - I promise.) Think Let the Right One In meets The Social Network. Think serious Oscar contender against Alberto Iglesias' two superb scores. Then stop thinking and listen to the damned thing.
Oh, and a special mention for track number 4, Oraculum, for its constantly wrong-footing 5/4-6/4 alternating time signature - 11 beats in a bar? Suck on that, Dave Brubeck.
Tuesday, 29 November 2011 Written by Ivan Radford
It's always good to get an email about David Fincher's The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo. Especially one with lots of pretty pictures. But what do you do with them? Gallery's get a bit boring sometimes, and I'm sure I've seen some of them before.
So I did the obvious thing - I went to Google. Straight away, I found a ton of new stills from Fincher Fanatic, Just Jared and various other places. Exciting, but not that helpful.
Then I started looking back at the last bunch of Dragon Tattoo stills on here, again featuring Daniel Craig and Rooney Mara, and remembered the amazing fact that Stieg Larsson's original novel mentions sandwiches on average once every 26 pages, and also talks about coffee on 92 separate occasions, because Mikael Blomkvist apparently likes coffee. A lot.
I'm not really sure if that explains what happened next in my head. But if you read on, you can see what I ended up doing. Hey, at least it reminds you how awesome David Fincher's version of Swedish Bum Rape: The Movie is looking. With or without the high caffeine content.
The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo is in cinemas on Boxing Day. Why not take the whole family? Or even better, just get your kids to watch David Fincher's Dragon Tattoo trailer for 30 seconds and scar them for life.
Wednesday, 16 November 2011 Written by Ivan Radford
"There’s too much anal rape" in The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo to get an Oscar nomination. I think we’re very safe," Fincher told Entertainment Weekly.
I've long been a fan of the Dragon Tattoo books, ever since I experienced that harrowing Swedish bum rape in the bath (shout to my internet homeboy Chris Blohm for helping me through that difficult time). And now Swedish Bum Rape: The Movie is returning to the big screen where it belongs, and people are suggesting it could be too much for The Academy?
I'm fairly sure that Oscar-nominated anal rape rule is incorrect (hello to Pulp Fiction) but let's reclaim the phrase for all awards contenders and get those Oscar folks used to it. For the next month, please use this hashtag on Twitter whenever you feel is appropriate:
And then feel free to check Google and see if I'm still the first result you get when you search for "Swedish bum rape". It's something I'm oddly proud of.