Soapbox: 15 ‘Tough’ Movie Characters Who Always Get Defeated

Wolverine-Hugh-Jackman
Turns out Logan might not be the best there is at what he does after all…

Everybody loves a movie tough guy or gal – powerful characters with a reputation for being able to win virtually any fight. Yet a surprising number of these iconic fighters have actually lost almost as many battles as they’ve won (at least based on what we see on screen).

Of course, a large part of this is down to the way that films work. In order for a story to be compelling, our heroes need to struggle – and even occasionally lose! – despite their incredible martial prowess. Similarly, in most instances, villains need to be defeated before the credits roll – which means that they are predestined to be second best, no matter how many times they’ve beaten the hero throughout the story.

That’s why most movie powerhouses earn their street cred by mowing down unfortunate redshirts, only to end up on the wrong end of a brutal beatdown when faced by an opponent at least as skilled as they are: because they’re really only as good at fighting as the story needs them to be at any given moment.

But even taking into account the mechanics of storytelling, you’d be amazed by just how patchy the win-loss record for some of cinema’s most well-known heavy hitters really is.

Don’t believe us? Then check out this list of 15 ‘Tough’ Movie Characters Who Always Get Defeated – we promise you: you won’t believe who made the cut!

This post was written exclusively for Screen Rant – click here to read the full article

Advertisements
Soapbox: 15 ‘Tough’ Movie Characters Who Always Get Defeated

Review: Blade Runner 2049

Blade-Runner-2049
This vision of the future remains as bleakly beautiful as ever

So much has already been said about Blade Runner 2049 – director Denis Villeneuve’s follow up to Ridley Scott’s 1982 cult sci-fi classic – that it’s hard to know where to begin.

The film – which, like its predecessor, draws upon Philip K. Dick’s novel Do Androids Dream Of Electric Sheep – has received near universal acclaim from critics, which is nothing short of remarkable for a sequel weighed down by 35 years worth of expectations!

But amid reports of underwhelming box office returns, casual moviegoers might be left wondering if Blade Runner 2049 lives up the massive amount of hype cinema buffs have built up around it.

The honest answer is no, probably not. However if Villeneuve’s film isn’t quite the masterpiece it’s being hailed as, it’s always good and often brilliant, and most importantly, serves as a worthy continuation of the Blade Runner story.

Continue reading “Review: Blade Runner 2049”

Review: Blade Runner 2049

Noticeboard: October 2017

Bilbo-Birthday-Sign
Everyone needs to hang this sign outside their house at least once in their life

Pop the champagne and break out the party hats – it’s The Pop Culture Studio’s third birthday this October!

To celebrate, several exciting Soapbox posts having already landed and other great articles – including a Review of Blade Runner 2049 – are on the way!

As always, I’d like to say a massive “thank you” to everyone who has supported The Studio over the last 12 months.

2017 has been the site’s biggest ever year – the ongoing freelance work for Screen Rant representing a major milestone – and it wouldn’t have been possible without such a great bunch of readers, so here’s to you!

Noticeboard: October 2017

Soapbox: Mortal Kombat – Every Ninja Ranked From Worst To Best

Mortal-Kombat-Ninjas
Let’s be honest: the question isn’t “Who got the top two spots?” but rather “In what order?”

Ninjas have been a mainstay of the Mortal Kombat universe ever since the introduction of iconic characters Sub-Zero and Scorpion in the first game in the series. From these humble beginnings, the number of ostensibly stealthy – yet inexplicably brightly-attired – warriors taking part in the franchise’s various tournaments has ballooned dramatically.

At first, the rationale for the rapid increase in ninjas featured in Mortal Kombat was purely a technical concern. Thanks to the limited amount of memory space available on video game cartridges (remember those?), the easiest way to add more fighters was to swap the colour palette of a masked character.

But even as technological advancements rendered storage space effectively a non-issue, the ninja aesthetic had become so ingrained in the Mortal Kombat mythology that more continued to be added. After all, who doesn’t love ninjas?

As you’d expect with this many shadowy assassins all populating the same fictional world, some stand out more than others – and the cream of the Mortal Kombat ninja crop all boast the best fighting moves, most gruesome finishing moves, coolest visuals and deepest backstories.

In a tip of the hat to Mortal Kombat’s spirit of (brutal) competition, here is Every Mortal Kombat Ninja Ranked From Best To Worst.

This post was written exclusively for Screen Rant – click here to read the full article

Soapbox: Mortal Kombat – Every Ninja Ranked From Worst To Best

Soapbox: 20 Confusing Movie Endings (And What Happened Next) Explained

The-Matrix-Revolutions
Not even these guys knew what they were fighting about by the end…

If you’re a movie fan – and we’re guessing you are, given you’ve visited Screen Rant – you’ve come across your fair share of confusing endings. While some films are downright baffling from start to finish, in a lot of cases, things only start to take an unexpected (and often inexplicable) turn during the closing moments.

Sometimes, we can tease out the meaning behind a finale with bit of extra thought (not to mention a cheeky repeated viewing or two). But just as often, even after considerable mental effort and umpteen re-watchings, viewers can still be left scratching their heads.

This can be further aggravated in instances where films end on an ambiguous, open-ended note. Here, the director deliberately refuses to serve up an easy answer to audiences, leaving us to wonder not only how the story ended, but inviting us to speculate over what happened next.

Fortunately, thanks to the wonders of the Internet age, we have a jaw-dropping wealth of information at our finger tips – whether it’s actual commentary by the filmmakers or well-researched theories by fans and critics.

As such, we’ve mined this online knowledge bank to create this list, which covers 20 Insanely Confusing Movie Endings (And What Happened Next) – try to keep up!

This post was written exclusively for Screen Rant  click here to read the full article

Soapbox: 20 Confusing Movie Endings (And What Happened Next) Explained

Review: IT: Chapter One

It-2017
Seriously: Clowns really are the worst

It’s no secret that clowns creep me out. It’s also a well-established fact that I’m a pretty huge fan of the works of Stephen King – despite being a total scaredy cat when it comes to horror!

So it’s fair to say that It: Chapter Onedirector Andy Muschietti’s big screen adaptation of King’s seminal novel about a demonic clown who preys on children – presented something of a challenge for me.

On the one hand, I’ve been terrified of It – otherwise known as “Pennywise the Dancing Clown” – since I first encountered the 1990 TV adaptation of the book at the too-young age of six.

And yet on the other hand, not only is the book is a favourite of mine, but the remake has also received largely glowing reviews and is currently raking in some serious cash at the box office.

What to do, what to do?

In the end, my curiosity outweighed my fear. I plucked up my courage and went to see It, entering the theatre with a level of trepidation matched only by my high expectations for the film.

I’m happy to report that not only did I survive the screening, but my expectations were also largely met – although interestingly, It is strongest when it plays as a “coming of age” story, and far weaker when it tries to be an actual horror film.

Continue reading “Review: IT: Chapter One”

Review: IT: Chapter One

Soapbox: 10 Best (And 10 Worst) Comic Book Plot Twists, Ranked

Comic-Plot-Twists-Header-scaled
I like to picture these guys at opposite ends of the same chessboard right now…

Given comics is a largely serialized medium, it’s not surprising that its history is filled with brilliant – and not-so-brilliant! – plot twists. After all, what better way to entice readers to read the next chapter than with an earth-shattering last page cliffhanger that leaves them thinking “How are they ever gonna resolve this?!”

There’s also few things more rewarding as a fan than seeing a meticulously crafted – and cleverly hidden – plot twist come to fruition. It’s the thrill of being surprised, combined with the satisfaction of knowing that the writer involved has played fair by providing ample little hints in the lead up to the big reveal.

Of course, some comic book plot twists are better executed than others. Indeed, more than a few have fallen flat, often because they either made no sense, or actively damaged decades worth of stories that proceeded them.

In instances like these, it sometimes seems like the twist was designed more from a shock value point of view, rather than as a payoff designed to enrich past and future adventures. Still, regardless of whether a major comic book reveal was outstanding or underwhelming, they’re almost always memorable.

With this in mind, we’ve taken a look back at 20 of comic’s biggest narrative surprises, in order to round up this list of the 10 Best (And 10 Worst) Comic Book Plot Twists of all time.

This post was written exclusively for Screen Rant – click here to read the full article

Soapbox: 10 Best (And 10 Worst) Comic Book Plot Twists, Ranked