DARKMATTERS - The Mind of Matt

You met me at a very strange time in my life...

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Darkmatters Review: Sucker Punch

"hot stuff"

Sucker Punch (12a)


Dir. Zack Snyder

Starring: Emily Browning, Oscar Isaac, Carla Gugino, Jena Malone, Abbie Cornish, Jamie Chung, Vanessa Hudgens

Reviewed by Matt Adcock (This review can also be read over at FRANK THE MONKEY)

You will be unprepared…

See that cutie dressed as a schoolgirl? The one with the cherry red lips, blonde hair, short skirt and samurai sword? That’s Babydoll and she’s going to take you on a wild ride which will redefine how you experience action films from now on.

"Beauty and the metalic minigun toting beast!"

Zack ‘now working on Superman: Man of steel’ Snyder is a master of visual spectacle mixed with crunching comic book action – as proved in his 300 and Watchmen flicks. With Sucker Punch he is writing and directing and it feels like he is downloading everything he thinks is awesome in one massive brain dump. The cutting edge visuals are still there swirling iconic elements fused from Manga, Sci-fi and Horror – making something unique and breathtaking.


Let’s not mess about here, Sucker Punch is possibly the best visual action thrill ride ever, it will break your heart, raise your pulse and melt your cinematic pleasure receptors. Nothing can fully prepare you for this insanely delicious eye-popping overload of smokin’ hot babes and megaton action.
It hits like a true sucker punch to the frontal lobes and left me reeling.

Plot wise Sucker Punch sees Baby Doll (Emily ‘Uninvited’ Browning) put in a Shutter Island alike mental institution by her wicked, incestuous stepfather after the double tragedy of death of mother and sister. The asylum is full of damaged young women and run by the slimy Blue Jones (Oscar ‘Prince John in Robin Hood’ Isaac) and Dr. Gorski (Carla ‘Watchmen’ Gugino).

In this dank nut house which is a front for a high class brothel, Baby Doll meets and bonds with some of the other girls - Rocket (Jena Malone), her sister Sweet Pea (Abbie Cornish), Amber (Jamie Chung) and Blondie (Vanessa Hudgens).

"Trench warfare - catwalk style"

The girls are forced to ‘dance’ for male clients who visit the facility and that is where reality gets fractured in that when Babydoll dances – she can escape into a fantasy world. The fantasy sections are where Sucker Punch really comes alive – channelling the very best CGI effects and a videogame vibe (kind of like a darker Scott Pilgrim). You’ll never see quite so many ‘oh man that’s awesome’ moments as you will watching Babydoll and her crew of babes taking on the forces of evil which include giant red eyed shoguns, fire breathing dragons, steam powered zombie Nazis or slick battle droids that look like they’ve escaped from i-Robot.

Sucker Punch is an amazing achievement, standing toe-to-toe with Inception in creating spectacular worlds within worlds. If the fantasies write large here are directly from the inside of Snyder’s mind then he may need psychiatric help before too long…

The whole cast go about the crazy proceedings with gusto and deliver a fantastic freak show of memorable characters including Scott Glenn as ‘Wiseman’ who is a the mystical ‘man with a plan’ leader of the girls in their fantasy battles. But the main attraction is Emily Browning's Babydoll who earns her place in the all time coolest cinematic heroine club, rubbing shoulders with Trinity from The Matrix, The Bride from Kill Bill and Hit Girl from Kick Ass...

If there is a problem to highlight with Sucker Punch it’s that the videogame level format seems lacking a proper ‘end boss finale’ but maybe the sucker punch here for viewers is not to presume that the film can be understood in a single viewing?
As the Wiseman says: “If you don't stand for something, you'll fall for anything” – Sucker Punch is a film worth falling for and action film fans, geeks and lovers of skimpily clad hot women kick butt should book their tickets now.

Good job Mr Snyder – now please just make sure that Superman has the plot to back up the visual spectacle and it just might be the best film of all time!?

Out of a potential 5 you have to go with a Darkmatters:


ööööö

(5 - open your mind!)...

Awesomeness ööööö – best. action. scenes. ever?

Laughs öö – patchy acting might raise a smile

Horror ööö – freaky in areas, nasty too

Babes ööööö – Browning is delicious but all the girls are hot

Spiritual Enlightenment ööö – dancing can free your mind...

- - -

Second opinion - try Artist Direct who say "Baby Doll usually begins dancing and singing for some nefarious character and then the girls are either battling a breathtakingly brutal fire-breathing dragon or trying to stop a futuristic train from exploding. They're locked and loaded with a bevy of machine guns, and Snyder blends John Woo-style bullet ballet with old school Kung Fu movements for a style of action that's often been tried but never executed this perfectly."

"nice outfits"

Emily Browning appreciation.

Monday, March 28, 2011

Darkmatters Review: Limitless


Limitless (15)
Dir. Neil Burger

Reviewed by Matt Adcock

I’m told that the average movie goer only uses 20% of their brain when experiencing a film.

‘Limitless’ however brings experimental drug NZT to the table - a drug that allows people to use the full 100 percent of their mind for films or absolutely anything. Recorded side effects however include scorching of the pleasure receptors as a result of witnessing such a delirious action thriller head-trip.

Imagine the possibilities if your whole brain was yours to command? How about being able to remember in detail everything you had ever seen or heard… and be able to implement that knowledge effectively at will. E.g. If you need to know how to fight – the moves from every action film and computer game you’ve experienced will be yours. Want to learn a new language? It’ll take you about a day. Looking to write a novel? Four days maximum for a masterpiece…

"Don't do drugs kids!"
This is the world of Limitless from director Neil ‘The Illusionist’ Burger. It is the tale of struggling writer Eddie Morra (Bradley ‘The Hangover’ Cooper) who gets dumped by his girlfriend Lindy (Abbie ‘Sucker Punch’ Cornish) for being a chronic loser.

Everything changes however when Eddie is offered NZT - a designer pharmaceutical that makes him laser focused and more confident than any man alive thanks to it freeing up 100% of his brainpower. Within days he has shot to the top of the financial world, making millions on the markets and his new high profile draws the attention of business mogul Carl Van Loon (Robert De Niro).

Things get out of hand when the brutal side effects of NZT kick in and jeopardise Eddie’s new untouchable ‘limitless’ lifestyle. Then he discovers that people will do anything to get their hands on the drug and that his life is in danger.

Limitless brings a delicious dark vibe that echoes David Fincher's zeitgeist riffing Fight Club. The idiom from Spiderman that ‘with great power comes great responsibility’ is lost on Eddie as he recklessly parties with his new found powers.

The cinematography is excellent – all blue-grays when Eddie is pre NZT (or when he comes down) and lovely golden glow when the drug is in effect. If there is a weak point it is probably De Niro who sleepwalks through his part but Limitless blasts along at such an agreeable rate that you’ll be tripping too much to be brought down by one poor performance.

Limitless is an awesome thrill ride that you should seek out and get a hit of ASAP!

Out of a potential 5 you have to go with a Darkmatters:
ööööö

(5 - open your mind!)...

Awesomeness öööö – take the blue pill

Laughs ööö – dark humour
Horror ööö – some violence and blood ingestion!

Babes ööö – fancy a Cornish pastie?

Spiritual Enlightenment ööö – if God gave us brains, why not use em?

- - -

Second opinion - try Hollywood Reporter who said: "He’s a mega-brain on steroids, a Superman for the Information Age. He is also a comic reflection of a cultural shift in American perceptions of masculinity that is beginning to value a Bill Gates or Steve Jobs more than a Kobe Bryant or LeBron James."

"Miss Cornish - smart man's g/f"

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Yoostar 2 Review




YOOSTAR 2

Reviewed by Matt Adcock

YooStar 2 is something a bit special – a game that brings the magic, danger, emotion and fun of Hollywood to your living room. Using the excellent PS3 Move Controller and PlayStation Eye Camera, you can insert yourself into famous movie and TV scenes, star alongside or in place of your favourite actors.

Think ‘SingStar’ with films... READ THE REST OF THIS REVIEW ON FRANK THE MONKEY
Check the trailer HERE

Sunday, March 20, 2011

Darkmatters Review: ANUVAHOOD


ANUVAHOOD (15)

Dir. Adam Deacon, Daniel Toland

Reviewed by Matt ‘Badman’ Adcock

This is a Hype Review Ting for ANUVAHOOD.

Step to this urban comedy people cos ANUVAHOOD is on the streets of the UK innit and it be the debut movie from Adam ‘KIdulthood’ Deacon who like wrote, directed and acted this sucker.

ANUVAHOOD is a new youth-em-up take on the gritty existence of urban teens on London’s mean streets – this time though, along with the requisite gangsta posturing, violence, drugs and yoof speak, it is mainly played for laughs.

Featuring the so called life of young Kenneth (Deacon), a wannbe MC who likes to be called ‘K’ and thinks that he’s a ‘Badman’ but in fact is a smalltime loser working at ‘Laimsbury’s. He can’t get a woman, his seven year old sister disrespects him and his mix tape CD has made him just £3 to date.

K hangs with a ‘wasteman’ crew that include hyperactive T.J. (Jazzie Zonzolo), straight talking Bookie (Femi Oyeniran), PlayStation loving Lesoi (Michael Vu who co-wrote this with Adam Deacon) and Spanish exchange tripper Enrique (Ollie Barbieri). This misfit crew live in fear of local psycho Tyrone (Richie Campbell) who compared to K is a proper Vex Badman and who takes every opportunity to jack those he meets on the estate.

If K ever going to make his dreams of musical tings come true he’s going to need to find a way to help his parents pay their rent, get some links and avoid getting shanked by the rival crews.

"The sex scenes are all that and more..."

We’ve seen youth council estate hardship a lot recently with the excellent Fish Tank and Harry Brown but whilst nothing in ANUVAHOOD is overly original (which is what comes of riffing so strongly on Noel Clarke’s Kidult and Adulthood films – look out for cameo from Jaime Winston) it does manage to be fresh and funny in places.

In fact Deacon delivers a ‘jokes’ film on a small budget – and handles the film’s transition from initial slapstick humour to a much darker gun crime and crunchingly violent climax well.

ANUVAHOOD has been attracting love and hate in equal measure – it seems to split along an age divide but if you ‘accept it’ then there’s much amusement to be had. The screening I caught this at was completely sold out which shows that there is an appetite for street level laughs.

Bad taste, big fun and totally hip, here’s to anuva ANUVAHOOD sometime soon!?

Out of a potential 5 you have to go with a Darkmatters:


öööö

(4 - it's jokes)...


Awesomeness ööö – get down in the hood

Laughs öööö – it's Jokes all the way

Horror ööö – bloody beating included

Babes ööö – toe licking good?

Spiritual Enlightenment ööö – it's a Hype Ting
- - -

Second opinion - try MTV who gave it 4/5 and said: "If you’re looking to escape the harsh realities of the gritty hood movies of the past and don’t mind a bit of cheesy, over-the-top cheeky banter - then ‘Anuvahood’ will be right up your street (pun intended)."

"Jaime Winston - adds some sizzle"

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Are You Smooth Enough to Play Jacques D'Azur

"Jacques d’Azur, the legendary ‘King Of Cannes’"

You Want To Star in a Film Premiering at Cannes 2011?

Matt Adcock for Darkmatters

Top brew makers Stella Artois have launched a competition to find someone smooth enough to star in a film that will premiere at the 2011 Cannes Film Festival.

In what could be the ultimate film fan’s competition, would-be stars are being given the chance to play Jacques d’Azur, the legendary ‘King Of Cannes’, in the highly anticipated biopic of his life. In addition to playing the leading role in the film, the lucky winner will also attend the prestigious Cannes Film Festival where the movie will premiere, and will receive movie star treatment throughout their trip.
Following Jacques d’Azur’s mysterious disappearance in 2010, Stella Artois launched a search for his rightful heir who was treated to Jacques’ week at the Cannes Film Festival.
Having been missing for over a year, Jacques is presumed dead, and all of Hollywood eagerly anticipates the movie of his life. But the greatest challenge still lies ahead - no actor can be found to play the leading role.

Stella Artois is now kicking off the search for the perfect leading man, using the latest in digital technology to ensure would-be Jacques’ from far and wide have the chance to audition.

The winner of this once in a lifetime opportunity will jet off to Cannes to film their part, and will then be treated to a five star experience befitting their newfound celebrity. The glamour and excitement of the Cannes Film Festival awaits this rising star who will travel in style to the jewel of the French Riviera and will literally be the star of the show from start to finish.

In true film star style, the premiere will be followed by a star studded party at Chez Jacques’, Stella Artois’ luxury, invitation-only lounge at the Carlton Hotel’s exclusive beachfront property in Cannes.
This amazing competition launches on March 1st when entrants can visit www.stellaartois.com to film their audition tape alongside their beautiful leading lady using the latest in webcam and video editing techniques. To enter, budding movie stars will film their scenes on their webcam and this footage will then be seamlessly morphed with the leading lady’s scenes to produce a casting film which would-be Jacques’ can share with their friends and family online. On April 1st, all submitted casting tapes will be put before our panel of distinguished judges who will select a short list of 200 Jacques’ hopefuls, to be announced on April 5, 2011. The star of the film will be chosen from this short list.
Alexander Lambrecht, Global Marketing Manager at Stella Artois, says “To celebrate our Cannes Film Festival sponsorship and the ‘King of Cannes’, Jacques d’Azur, we’re offering one lucky fan the experience of a lifetime. Now, Stella Artois fans around the world will have the chance to see their own creation online, and one fan will appear on the big screen at the home of the world’s most prestigious event in the film industry calendar, the 64th annual Cannes Film Festival. This truly is a once in a lifetime opportunity and we can’t wait to meet our new leading man.”

Would-be leading ladies need not miss out on all the fun – the online casting call also offers the opportunity to audition for a starring role playing opposite the legendary Jacques d’Azur.

Visit http://www.stellaartois.com/ this month for details and to apply.


"Could this be you?"


About Stella Artois & Film

Stella Artois has had a long association with film and sponsors 50 international film festivals each year. In the UK, Stella Artois has organised a range of events as well as TV sponsorship of Channel 4 films and a website. Stella Artois is a primary sponsor of the film festivals of Cannes, Melbourne and Sundance.

About Anheuser-Busch InBev


Anheuser-Busch InBev is a publicly traded company (Euronext: ABI) based in Leuven, Belgium, with an American Depository Receipt secondary listing on the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE: BUD). It is the leading global brewer and one of the world's top five consumer products companies. A true consumer-centric, sales driven organization, Anheuser-Busch InBev manages a portfolio of well over 200 beer brands that includes global flagship brands Budweiser, Stella Artois and Beck’s, fast growing multi-country brands like Leffe and Hoegaarden, and strong "local champions" such as Bud Light, Skol, Brahma, Quilmes, Michelob, Harbin, Sedrin, Klinskoye, Sibirskaya Korona, Chernigivske, and Jupiler, among others. In addition, the company owns a 50 percent equity interest in the operating subsidiary of Grupo Modelo, Mexico's leading brewer and owner of the global Corona brand. Anheuser- Busch InBev’s dedication to heritage and quality is rooted in brewing traditions that originate from the Den Hoorn brewery in Leuven, Belgium, dating back to 1366 and the pioneering spirit of the Anheuser-Busch brewery, which traces its origins back to 1852 in St. Louis, USA. Geographically diversified with a balanced exposure to developed and developing markets, Anheuser-Busch InBev leverages the collective strengths of its approximately 116,000 employees based in operations in 23 countries across the world. The company strives to be the Best Beer Company in a Better World. In 2009, the company realized revenue of 36.8 billion USD. For more information, please visit: www.ab-inbev.com


SUCKER PUNCH anticipation


"Can't wait!!"


Only a few days now until SUCKET PUNCH hits the UK...

If  you haven't already checked the excellent retro style posters (as above) click HERE

To watch the trailer and see the all babe cast on Darkmatters click HERE

More Emily Browning love click HERE

Game Baftas: PS3 brings the Heavy Rain


Sony's PS3 was the big winner at the 2011 Baftas

Matt Adcock for Darkmattters

Last night the Video Game Baftas were awarded and for the second year running, the PS3 was the console which had the most wins. Last year Uncharted 2 took home 4 Baftas, this year it was Heavy Rain which won 3 and was the only game to win multiple awards.

There was a good selection of winners but the only Xbox 360 exclusive to win was the kiddie friendly Kinect Sports - surprisingly Sony's Move enabled Heavy Rain beat Kinect to the Technical Innovation award. Microsoft had put Alan Wake up against Heavy Rain in two catagories but the PS3 title beat it both times.
"Multiple Baftas for the MOVE controlled game"

And the winner is:

Best Game - Mass Effect 2 

Artistic Achievement - God of War III

Action - Assassin’s Creed Brotherhood

Multiplayer - Need for Speed: Hot Pursuit

Original Music - Heavy Rain

Sports - F1 2010

Story - Heavy Rain

Technical Innovation - Heavy Rain

Best use of audio - Battlefield: Bad Company: 2

Game Award 2010 (Voted by the Public) - Call of Duty: Black Ops


Family - Kinect Sports


Gameplay - Super Mario Galaxy 2

Strategy - Civilization V

Social Network Game - My Empire

One to Watch - Twang

Handheld - Cut the Rope


Well done to all the winners - here's to another great year of gaming which has already kicked off in style with LittleBigPlanet2, KILLZONE 3, DC UNIVERSE ONLINE and YOOSTAR 2.

"Heavy Rain - the game to beat in 2010"
Darkmatters review of HEAVY RAIN

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Darkmatters Review: Battle Los Angeles


Battle: Los Angeles (12a)


Dir. Jonathan Liebesman

Reviewed by Matt Adcock

“Retreat?”


“Hell no!”

If there is one thing that Hollywood teaches us it’s that when tooled up alien invaders turn up and begin systematically wiping us out – the people you really want in your corner are U.S. Marines. Battle: Los Angeles is all about man vs aliens – told from the point of view of a bunch of Marines who risk everything to save some civilians trapped behind enemy lines.

Splashing impressive special effects, Battle: Los Angeles paints a pretty bleak picture as to earth’s capacity to repel invaders and packs in a huge amount of peril and threat for a 12a rated film. This is basically a cinematic hybrid version of two classic shoot-em-up PlayStation games namely Call of Duty crossed with Resistance: Fall of Man (look out for the massive billboard for Sony’s Resistance 3 which arrives later this year in one scene).

We join Staff Sgt. Michael Nantz (Aaron ‘Dark Knight’ Eckhat), a soldier whose last mission didn’t go so well, leading to most of his men getting killed. He is tasked with leadings a small team of Marines into the occupied area of Santa Monica – an area that has been devastated by the evil alien exterminators.

Think ‘Black Hawk Down’ just with angry armoured extra-terrestrials instead of Somali soldiers and you’ll have some idea of the non-stop against the odds action that makes up most of the screen time. The deafening interplay of large caliber guns being answered by the sonic booms of the advance alien weaponry is the constant backdrop to the macho goings on. Who, if anyone, will survive is the only variable factor as the team battle valiantly to save some cute civilian kids and token multicultural clichéd characters.

Battle: Los Angeles is a pure boys own movie – a fact backed up by my eldest son who turned to me as the end credits rolled and said “I could happily watch another two hours of that!” Don’t be expecting any real character development or deep exploration of meaningful issues – just sit back and enjoy the alien carnage and untold battle mayhem.

The effects team has created some of the best alien special effects to grace the screen since AVATAR (even though Colin and Greg Strause jumped ship midway to direct the lesser sci-fi work ‘Skyline’).

Battle: Los Angeles is loud, dumb and action packed, so if that’s what you’re in the mood for – step up and join the fight!
Out of a potential 5 you have to go with a Darkmatters:
öööö

(4 - Big bangs, little brains, Woo Haa)...

Awesomeness öööö – LA gets trashed in style
Laughs öö – unitentional laughs only
Horror ööö – some convincing death and destruction
Babes öö – Michelle Rodriguez looks good kick ass
Spiritual Enlightenment ööö – LA is worth fighting for!

- - -
Second opinion - try Sci-Fi-Cool who said: "“Battle: Los Angeles” is one hell of an alien invasion kick-off for 2011. For now, at least, it’s the film to beat."

Rodriguez looks good out of combat gear too"

BLOODED: coming soon


BLOODED

Matt Adcock

Imagine if protest groups who disagreed with what people do took the law into their own hands?

Well, in October 2005, five young people were kidnapped in the Highlands of Scotland.


Stripped and abandoned in the the wilderness, they were forced into a deadly game where the hunters became the hunted. Their ordeal was filmed by an extreme animal rights group as a warning to others: if you hunt...you're fair game.

Combining dramatic reconstruction and compelling interviews with the survivors, BLOODED finally tells the full story behind one of the most extreme internet virals of modern times.
 
Check out the trailer for this interesting flick HERE

Darkmatters Review: MARCHLANDS

Marchlands (15)

Dir. James Kent

Starring: Alex Kingston, Dean Andrews, Shelley Conn, Jodie Whittaker, Tessa Peake-Jones, Jamie Thomas King, Elliot Cowan, Ethan Griffin, Sydney Wade, Elizabeth Rider, Sophie Stone, Anne Reid

Reviewed by Matt Adcock (A version of this review is also available on FRANK THE MONKEY - which Matt Adcock also writes for) Click here to read

Thank you for your interest in this lovely large Yorkshire house. As I’m sure you’ll agree, ‘Marchlands’ has a lot of character – unfortunately it’s seen a fair share of unhappiness but let’s not dwell on that.

If you do feel a chilling supernatural presence or see a spooky little girl that isn’t actually there – please don’t worry, I’m sure it’s nothing to worry about… Unless…

Marchlands is a classy ghost story about a little girl named Alice who haunts the big house that is home of three families who live in it across three time periods (1968, 1988, 2010). The one thing that links them all is Alice and her untimely death.

What follows is a gripping drama follows the events as the various repercussions of the unsolved mystery of Alice's death and why her spirit is still freaking people out in Marchlands.

"Residents of Marchlands through the years"

The production values are excellent (which I’m sure isat least partly thanks to Warner Brothers investing for the first time in British TV). ITV have surpassed the normally untouchable BCC with Marchlands – a mystery thriller that delivers more frightful thrills than any number of Paranormal Activities and features a fantastic cast including Alex Kingston (Moll Flanders), Denis Lawson (Bleak House), Jodie Whittaker (St Trinian's), Anne Reid (Ladies of Letters), Shelly Con (Mistresses) and Tessa Peake-Jones (Only Fools and Horses).

The enthralling story of the three families linked across three decades as they live in the remote house is very well put together. The plot jumps in time effectively but never confusingly and builds up a delicious slow burn which pays off in a satisfying climax.

It is better to go into Marchlands not knowing all the ins and outs of the characters in each generation, so for maximum viewing pleasure don’t go reading up on the plot beforehand. Credit must go to the makers for reinvigorating the haunted house genre without relying on too many clichés.

Special props should go to the young Sydney Wade who plays ‘Amy’ – another 8 year old girl who comes to live in Marchlands and who becomes ‘friends’ with the dead Alice. Hers is a key role and Wade marks herself out as a child actor with a big future thanks to a gripping depiction of a troubled child.

Alice isn’t the only ‘ghost’ in Marchlands as the skeletons and demons of past actions tumble from the closets of various characters… Who will survive emotionally and what will the dark secret behind Alice’s death mean to those across the generations?

Marchlands sets the new high benchmark for TV horror-lite. It carries the torch of the old Hammer Horror shows and delivers an unsettling miniseries that will suck you in and chill your bones. Highly recommended for those who like it when things go ‘bump’ in the night…

Out of a potential 5 you have to go with a Darkmatters:

öööö

(4 - just the right balance of spook-em-up and mystery thriller)...

Friday, March 11, 2011

Darkmatters Review: Altitude

Altitude (15)


Dir. Kaare Andrews

Reviewed by Matt Adcock

“Keep an eye out…”

“For what?”

“For ANYTHING!”

Ladies and gentlemen please fasten your seat belts and prepare for some rough air – thing are going to get a little hairy for the next hour and a half…

Altitude - the debut feature from award-winning comic book writer and illustrator Kaare Andews (The Incredible Hulk; Ultimate X-Men; Amazing Spider-Man), is a supernatural thriller that puts several hot teens in some serious aerial danger. Altitude features "90210" star Jessica Lowndes (The Haunting Of Molly Hartley) who heads the cast of up-and-coming young talent that includes Julianna Guill (Friday The 13th), Ryan Donowho (The O.C.), Landon Liboiron (Life Unexpected) and Jake Weary (As The World Turns).

"Boldly going where no teens have gone before..."
It’s hard to sum Altitude up in mere words – maybe you should watch the UK trailer before reading on:

http://onlinemoviepromo.com/newplayer.php?id=3905

The plot sees rookie pilot Sara (Lowndes) taking to the sky with some pals, only to lose control of the plane as they hit some freak weather. And when I say ‘freak’ I mean a diabolic storm that is home to a strange, angry and homicidal malevolent creature. It’s a clever play on the fear of flying mixed with a huge Lovecraft-esq tentacle spouting beastie.

For maximum enjoyment, don’t try to think too much about the plot – just sit back and lap up the teenagers in peril suspense which is nicely worked. Altitude has been likened to Donnie Darko or Twilight Zone which isn’t entirely unfair – it’s a movie that takes the themes of fear and the power of the imagination to terrifying new ‘heights’.

"The plane hits some WTF is that turbulence"

The DVD comes packing some decent Special Features too which include: audio commentary by director Kaare Andrews; Altitude: Behind The Scenes; Green Storm featurette; original concept gallery; trailer; 2.0 Stereo and 5.1 Dolby audio options.

Overall Altitude is a confirmed cult classic B-movie horror that delights whist you watch it and is forgotten the seconds the credits roll.

Out of a potential 5 you have to go with a Darkmatters:


ööö

(3 - solid airborne horror hokum)...


PlayStation®Move does Lily Allen’s Lucy In Disguise


PlayStation®Move announces second collaboration with Lily Allen’s fashion concep Lucy In Disguise.

What do you get if you cross a pop sensation, scanty underware and PlayStation Move?

...Lucy in Disguise

Darkmatters are happy to announce that a new collaboration between PlayStation®Move and Lucy In Disguise to celebrate London Fashion Week. The collaboration see’s Lucy in Disguise founders Lily Allen and Sarah Owen produce a new three minute short film and a special new window installation inspired by movement.

PlayStation Move is the funkiest way to play games on PlayStation 3, users just need to pick up the Move controller and interact with the game on a whole new level! As part of the relationship, Lucy in Disguise was one of the first places in the UK to showcase the new games available with PlayStation Move.

Lucy In Disguise is a unique concept store from sisters Lily Allen & Sarah Owen. Visitors are able to delve into Lucy’s wardrobe and hire or purchase beautifully selected vintage clothing from the 20’s all the way through to the 90’s, along with Lucy In Disguise branded products such as T-Shirts, candles and screen prints. There are two Sony PlayStation installations in store, one for the boys and one for the girls.

The short film explores the theme of time travel - produced and styled by Lily Allen and Sarah Owen and directed by Marie Kristiansen.

The short sees Lucy getting ready for a night out and being drawn into her closet and taken on a magical fashion time tour through different fashion era’s from the 1980’s back to the 1920’s. Part of the inspiration for the short has come from Lily and Sarah’s favourite PlayStation Move game Buzz! The Ultimate Music Quiz.

Watch the film here:


In the behind the scenes making of, Lily and Sarah are transformed into Buzz! quiz contestants, scanning their face into the game and choosing their 80’s inspired outfits before battling it out to see who will be named Buzz! Ultimate Music Quiz champion. Lily and Sarah have also created a Lucy in Disguise PlayStation Buzz quiz to go with the short.

You can view the video and Lucy’s new blog and fashion tips at http://www.lucyindisguiselondon.com/

‘For our second Lucy in Disguise film project we wanted to explore fashion through the ages - the film like the store is about girls living it up in a fantasy world, where we rule and are let loose. Out of all the PlayStation Move games we play, Buzz: The Ultimate Music Quiz felt like the perfect accompaniment! ’ Lily Allen and Sarah Owen

Alongside the film will be a special motion sensitive light window at the Covent Garden Store commissioned by PlayStation Move and inspired by the idea of movement in fashion.

The installation has been designed by Deniz Kurtel so if you're in the area, why not drop on by to check it out?

Here's the earlier film:



About PlayStation Move




PlayStation® Move launched worldwide on the 17th September 2010, offering a motion-based, high definition gaming experience unlike anything currently on the market. Unlike existing motion controllers, the PlayStation® Move controller delivers unmatched accuracy through its advanced sensors as well as a colour changing sphere which is tracked by the PlayStation Eye camera. Through the PlayStation Move system, both fast and subtle motion can be detected and users can provide direct input through action buttons and analogue triggers as well as capturing their own voice or image through the PlayStation Eye.

About Sony Computer Entertainment Europe Ltd

Sony Computer Entertainment Europe (SCEE), based in London, is responsible for the distribution, marketing and sales of PlayStation®3, PlayStation®2, PSP™ (PlayStation®Portable) and PlayStation®Network software and hardware in 99 territories across Europe, the Middle East, Africa and Oceania. SCEE also develops, publishes, markets and distributes entertainment software for these formats, and manages the third party licensing programs for the formats in these territories. Since the launch of PlayStation 3 in November 2006, 47.9 million units have been sold globally and continue to be sold at a record level. Maintaining its position as one of the most successful consumer electronic products in history, PlayStation 2 has sold over 149.8 million systems worldwide. Since its launch at the end of 2004, over 67.8 million PSPs have been sold globally, highlighting the importance of the portable entertainment market. With the huge increase in interest and accessibility of network applications and network gaming, more than 69 million accounts have registered to PlayStation Network, the free-to-access interactive environment, and over 1.43 billion items have been downloaded.

More information about PlayStation products can be found at http://www.playstation.com/ 

PlayStation, the PlayStation logo are registered trademarks of Sony Computer Entertainment Inc. PS3 and PSP are trademarks of Sony Computer Entertainment Inc. All other trademarks are property of their respective owners.

Thursday, March 10, 2011

PS3 'saves' Hallelujah!!



"Cloud saving - not even Final Fantasy 7 related"

PlayStation Plus takes gamers far beyond competition

Matt Adcock for Darkmatters

It's a terrifying thought for any gamer who has sunk many hours into a game... Data loss!?
If you've invested in leveling up, getting to the final boss, working towards a Platinum trophy - the one thing you really don't need would be for your save data to be lost.

Many of my Xbox playing friends have openly wept as their machines went the way of the infamous Red Ring of Death or new improved Red Light of Death with the slim model... It wasn't so much the repair bill or replacement cost of the hardware but more the pain of lost game saves. PS3 users too have complained that buying a new PS3 or upgrading the hard drive can mean saying goodbye to some copyrighted game save data.

But while Xbox 360 players will still have that worry - and will need to keep some sort of external disc to hand for backups, now PlayStation 3 owners need never fear losing their save games ever again. All that's required is to sign up for the Sony's PlayStation Plus service - an excellent way to get free games, Beta access and exclusive treats from Sony anyway.

Because Sony know how to treat their gamers and have introduced 'cloud storage' for game saves.

This feature allows gamers to upload 150MB of save game data to the big Sony game save bank in the sky (online), so that you can not only easily transfer game saves between PlayStation 3 systems - should you own more than one, but also access your game save from a mate's PS3 by logging in on their machine.

So if someone should steal your beloved PS3 or heaven forbid, it die from years of hard service - your game saves are protected. Even copy-protected data can still be stored online, which will make the transition between PS3s or Hard Disc Drive upgrading that much more easy.

Nice move Sony, we gamers salute you!!

The Cloud Storage comes with the 3.60 system update and is accessed through the XMB's Saved Data Utility menu.
"Sony's PS3 Angels - waiting to look after your game save data"

Recent cool PS3 games to check:

KILLZONE 3

DC Universe Online

Monday, March 07, 2011

Darkmatters Review: Catfish


Catfish (12)


Dir. Ariel Schulman and Henry Joost

Reviewed by Matt ‘Rachel’ Adcock

My name is Rachel, I’m a sexy young babe with a hot body and naughty mind… I’d love to be your facebook friend and send you some great pictures of myself!? Tell me what you’re into, where you live, maybe we could meet up, I know you want to at least ‘poke’ me, surely it would be rude not to?

"'Rachel' - who looks a lot like Emma Stone"

Of course none of the above is actually true (apart from the hot body bit LOL) but thanks to facebook there’s nothing stopping me pretending to be ‘Rachel’ if I choose to and you might well have become my facebook ‘friend’… In fact I could have created a whole raft of alternate personalities on facebook – all linked to each other and interacting across the virtual social network.

Catfish is a thought provoking documentary which follows Nev Schulman - a New York photographer who strikes up an unlikely facebook friendship with an eight year old girl named Abby who has some artistic talent and likes to paint paintings of Nev’s photographs.

Nev’s brother Ariel Schulma and his friend Henry Joost are the filmmakers here and their documentary records how the virtual friendship between Nev and Abby grows. Nev gets talking to Abby’s mum Angela and comes across her sexy sister Megan – with whom he strikes up a long distance – social network enabled flirtation.

What at first starts off as a seemingly harmless and interesting set of new contacts for Nev, spirals into something a bit more worrying when cracks and inconsistencies begin to raise doubts in Nev’s mind as to who he is actually in contact with.

Catfish is a brilliant and compulsively watchable cautionary tale – which leaves viewers asking “just how well do you know your facebook friends?” Nev makes a good everyman hero – and his Scooby Doo style investigation with his pals into who or what he is virtually involved with in Abby, Megan, Angela and their increasingly diverse circle of facebook ‘friends’ makes for good viewing.

Needless to say that all is not quite what it seems but I won’t spoil the rest of the plot for you as it works best when you don’t know what to expect. The cinematography is of the shaky cam Cloverfield style – recently employed so well in The Last Exorcism. The filmmakers keep the narrative of their documentary ticking along so that you don’t have chance to get bored during the slow build up as you’ll really want to see how it ends.

There are some places where the film could be accused of exploiting real people’s lives (if in fact this is a ‘true’ as they’d have you believe) but the fact is that you’re likely to come away from Catfish having been moved and challenged – which are reactions that only the best films really accomplish.

Catfish is the perfect flip side to the big budget The Social Network, it seems that Mark Zuckerberg has a lot to answer for, not least empowering people to lead virtual lives that may not actually be rooted in reality. Recommended viewing for every facebook user in your life!

Out of a potential 5 you have to go with a Darkmatters:
öööö
(4 – a carcrash spectacle of eyewatering social interaction)...


Sunday, March 06, 2011

Darkmatters Review: Unknown


Unknown (12a)

Dir. Jaume Collet-Serra

Reviewed by Matt Adcock

Do you know what it feels like to become insane? It's a war between being told who you are and knowing who you are... Which do you think wins?

My name is Doctor Martin Harris, you’ll never guess what happened to me when I went to Berlin for a biotechnology convention… I’d left my briefcase at the Airport and I had to grab a taxi back – only en-route we were involved in an accident and I was knocked unconscious.

Four days later when I awoke from my coma I found that I wasn’t the man I thought I was. My lovely wife Elizabeth (January Jones) no longer recognised me and to make matters worse some other guy (Aidan Quinn) is claiming to be Doctor Martin Harris!? My only hope of proving that I am not crazy and that sinister things are afoot is to track down the taxi driver Gina (Diane Kruger) whose cab I was in.

Or am I mad? Maybe there never was a Martin Harris? Or perhaps this is all an evil plot and I’m going to have to fight to prove myself.

What would you do to try and take back your life? Surely there’s nothing more worth fighting for… And fortunately fighting back is what this Martin Harris (Liam Neeson) does well. Adopting his ‘Taken’ hard man persona Neeson kicks copious amount of butt in his quest to get to the bottom of what exactly is going on. Car chases, gunfights, beatings and danger lie around every Berlin corner… Director Juame ‘Orphan’ Collet-Serra wants to deliver a Bourne meets Bond actioner but is hamstrung by having to keep the material with the boundaries of a 12a rating. So what could have been a wham-bang crunching cinematic adventure becomes a watchable but unremarkable lightweight dose of low level mystery and thrills.

Unknown doesn’t bring enough new or anything remotely shocking once you get on board with the plot. You can tick the boxes of cinematic ‘tried and tested’ elements including the plucky friend of the hero’s saviour with a short life expectancy, an old-school spy ally, a sinister agent that might not be all they seem – BINGO you’ve got a by-the-numbers action thriller.

As I left the cinema having watched Unknown with my lovely wife, we overheard several people saying the same thing… “It was ok, just not as good a ‘Taken’” and that’s a fair summation.

Out of a potential 5 you have to go with a Darkmatters:

ööö

(3 - single serving of mystery action thrills)...

Awesomeness ööö – nice in places

Laughs ö – no funny business

Horror öö – not very grim at all

Babes öööö – January Jones is hot (see below)

Spiritual Enlightenment ööö – your life is worth fighting for!
- - -

Second opinion - try Geeksyndicate

"Miss January... Jones"

Friday, March 04, 2011

Darkmatters: Killzone 3 Review

Killzone 3 (18) PS3 Exclusive

Developed by Guerrilla Games

Published by SCEE

Reviewed by Matt Adcock

We brave PS3 gamers have fought the Helghast and using the ISA marines pushed into their homeworld thanks to Killzone 2…

Now even with their evil leader ‘Visari’ taken down, we find that the war is far from over…

The Helghast forces are not beaten and are mounting a devastating counter-attack, the few remaining ISA are being pushed back to the point we must evacuate the planet of Helghan.

But if we have to go… let’s go in fine style and take as many of the enemy as possible with us – lock and load soldier!!


"don't shoot until you see the reds of their eyes"

Ok, so there isn’t exactly a shortage of fine First Person Shooter games, Call of Duty and Modern Warfare are mass selling master-classes of the genre, Battlefield Bad Company 2 brought tasty destruction of the environment into play. Medal of Honor got revamped with extra beards, Halo Reach continued its classy sci-fi warfare and newcomer Bulletstorm raised the level of insanity with ‘skill kills’. But as we wait for the promising looking Crysis 2 and the potential game of the year Battlefield 3 ...

There is only one game you need…

Just what can Killzone 3 bring to this overcrowded orgy of destruction then? Well, how about the best and most satisfying online multiplayer frag fest to date, a unique and brilliant motion control method through the Move and by far the richest FPS graphics to grace any console… That’s what I’m talking about… Bring it!!

Killzone 2 was graphically superb but Killzone 3 surpasses it on every level – the levels range from article snowfields which boast the best incidental ‘snow effects’ of any game available through to steamy alien jungles. The industrial Helgan cities and bases return and have been brought to even more vivid life than in the previous games. Both the orange eye Helghast and the macho jock ISA characters are excellent with gorgeous detailing (the feeling of satisfaction when you shoot a Helghast’s helmet off and he turn round to frantically try and find it is immense).

Killzone 3 packs a mighty surround sound punch too – the fear inducing explosions rip from all directions, the screams of the injured and the barked orders of friends and foes echo convincingly around the beautiful battlefields. This game has quality voice casting also with screen legend Malcolm McDowell voicing evil Jordan Stahl and British legend Ray Winstone voicing Helghast Admiral Orlock. Having actors of this magnitude lends the cinematic cut scenes massive watchability and it is a joy to watch the baddie commanders squabbling amongst themselves in the power vacuum left by Visari.

I mentioned that Killzone 3 can be played in two ways – the trusty Dualshock 3 can be used with a Call of Duty button set up which will please fans of those shooters. The new way to play though is through the funky Playstation Move – this uses the glowing light ended controller to ‘look around / fire’ and the nav controller to move. For the most realistic control system out there you’ll want to invest in the sharpshooter peripheral which fits both the two Move controllers into a shotgun / rifle style rig (complete with pump action reloading). It’s just beautiful… Once you acclimatise to set up many have reported getting much better kill / death ratios with the Move controls!?

The main game campaign can be played in either single player mode or through co-op – very satisfying it is too working with a human pal to take down the enemy. It’s good but the campaign is only part of the Killzone 3 package and it’s not even the best part. The online multiplayer mode is where the real fun is to be had – refined and polished from the Killzone 2 online there are a decent choice of game modes including Guerrilla (Team Deathmatch), Warzone (which cycles through different objective based games) and a brilliant ‘Bot Zone’ where you can hone you skills against the A.I. opponents.

Kills and feats will give you points to spend on new abilities and weapons – and the upgrades are very very tasty so it is worth going for them as the gameplay just gets better with each new weapon or skill e.g. the sniper ‘Marksman’ can unlock a powerful Machine Pistol as a secondary weapon which has a ferocious rate of fire…

Overall Killzone 3 is delicious, addictive multiplayer deathmatch perfection… And if you have a 3D TV, this game will show it off like nothing else around. Every gamer on planet earth who has ever enjoyed a shooting game should witness the sheer brilliant carnage that Killzone 3 delivers – there is no substitute!!

"David Cameron's recreation mask"

Out of a potential 5 you have to go with a Darkmatters:

ööööö

(5 - Awesome shock and awe)...

Previous love for Killzone 3 on Darkmatters:
 
Trailer
 
Kevin Butler Advert
 
Emma Watson hot sexy legs
"If Killzone 3 was a woman in would be Emma Watson"

You can also read this review over at funky Irish site FRANK THE MONKEY

Jameson Empire Awards: vote KICK ASS


Film Awards season rolls on...

Matt Adcock gives his picks for the 2011 Jameson Empire Awards.


The shortlist of finalists has been announced - there are only a few days now to get your votes in!

Click here to VOTE

Voting ends 9th March.


Best Newcomer: Darkmatters picks - Chloe Moretz (Kick-Ass / Let Me In)

Best Thriller: Darkmatters picks - The Town click here for review

Best Horror: Darkmatters picks - Let Me In click here for review

Best Comedy: Darkmatters picks - Four Lions click here for review

Best Sci-Fi / Fantasy: Darkmatters picks - KICK-ASS click here for review

Best Actor: Darkmatters picks - Colin Firth (The King's Speech) click here for review

Best Actress: Darkmatters picks - Natalie Portman (Black Swan) click here for review

Best Director: Darkmatters picks - Matthew Vaughn (Kick-Ass) click here for review

Best British Film: Darkmatters picks - KICK-ASS click here for review

Best Film: Darkmatters picks - KICK-ASS click here for review

chloe moretz hot
"Chloe Moretz FTW"




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