READY PLAYER ONE gets its first trailer and teases Spielberg’s anticipated adaptation

ready player one movie trailer spielberg 2018

Spielberg’s Ready Player One adaptation gets a crazy trailer

Ready Player One made a big splash as a novel in 2011 and found a home in the hearts of ’80s nostalgia enthusiasts the world over. Steven Spielberg, the ’80s nostalgia auteur himself, decided the book was perfect source material for a live-action, big screen adaptation, and the first trailer for his movie proves there will be plenty of in-book references for the director to play with. Personally, I wasn’t smitten by the book, and I felt the ’80s pop culture references were a bit heavy handed at times, but I can imagine a movie adaptation in the hands of Spielberg (and backed by the cast this movie has) being a ton of fun. The trailer teases plenty of recognizable characters and creatures, and the book was packed with enough references to fill a few Spielberg toy boxes, so it’ll be cool to see what makes the cut and what gets left out.

Not sure what Ready Player One is? Check out the trailer for the movie after the jump.



JUMANJI: WELCOME TO THE JUNGLE trailer replaces the board with a Nintendo

jumanji movie 2017 rock gillan black hart

Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle trailer takes a Tron turn

The first trailer for Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle, the upcoming remake/reboot no one really wants but we’re all curious about, was released a while ago but is worth checking out if you haven’t seen it yet. I’m late to the party, and I remember cocking an eyebrow and filing this trailer away in June when I first gave it a watch. The remake/reboot/sequel(?) sees the iconic board game turned into a Nintendo-like video game and updated for a new generation. Instead of wooden pieces and real-world wildlife, it looks like this time around we’re being immersed in a virtual reality-type, body transfer…thing. Check out the trailer and you’ll see what’s going on.

Watch the first trailer for 2017’s Jumanji, read a plot synopsis, and glimpse a poster for the movie after the jump.



DENVER COMIC CON 2017: Celebrity Guest Panel Spotlight

denver comic con 2017 celebrity spotlight

Forget Fillion, check out these celebrity guests from Denver Comic Con 2017

Let’s face it, the biggest draws to any convention are the celebrity guest appearances, and who shows up can even determine whether a fan attends or not any given year. Denver Comic Con and the folks of Pop Culture Classroom have always tried to fill their celebrity guest roster with familiar faces, exciting industry innovators, and A-list entertainers. Even when big names cancel last minute, surprise announcements often appease attendees who’ve sworn off the convention after their celebrity of choice pulled the plug, so I respect DCC for always bringing their A game.

Denver Comic Con 2017 saw a few cancellations and late guest announcements just like any other year, adjustments were made, and cosplayers and celebrity guests alike seemed to have a great time. Arguably, this year’s biggest attractions were Nathan Fillion (Firefly, Castle), Weird Al, Catherine Tate (The Office, Doctor Who), and those mentioned below, but I think everyone was surprised when John Cusack seemingly came out of nowhere as a last-minute addition.

This year was my first covering the convention as media, so no matter how ambitious my itinerary was I knew I wouldn’t be able to see all the DCC celebrity guests on my list. Add in expected line time (which can be hours), and trying to catch more than one or two of the biggest names at the convention was near impossible (I missed Fillion, Weird Al, the Stranger Things kids, and the Weasley twins to name a few). I juggled panel slots, vendor and artist spotlights, and cosplay photography and had to weigh my opportunity options more than a few times, but in the end I was able to get up close and semi-personal with a handful of fantastic film and television folks.

Read my recalled-from-memory rundown of panels featuring Garrett Wang, Khary Payton, Dee Bradley Baker, Phil LaMarr, Famke Janssen, Jon Heder, Michael Rossenbaum, and Wallace Shawn after the jump.



ANTI MATTER trailer teases a mind bending low budget movie like Pi, Primer, or Memento

anti matter movie trailer 2017

Anti Matter looks like a low key gem of a movie

Stumbled across the trailer for the movie Anti Matter recently, and the movie looks interesting enough to sink some time into (you’ll get it once you watch the trailer). Cerebral mind benders are tough to sell in a the span of a trailer, so don’t get your hopes up too high, but Anti Matter dropped in the UK last year (with a US release scheduled for this fall) and has been compared to cult favorites like Pi, Primer, and Memento. That’s some deep water to be wading around in as a debut feature film, and comparisons like that are bound to turn a few heads. The monkey mask got my attention, and the high praise kept me around for the length of the trailer. Here’s hoping Anti Matter finds a respectable audience when it hits US theaters in September.

Watch the trailer, read a plot synopsis, and check out a few movie posters for Anti Matter after the jump.



DCC2017: Artist spotlight with Mike Maydak, the Atomic Pixies, and Keith P. Rein

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Three great Denver Comic Con artists with three distinct styles

It’s easy to forget that the comic con aesthetic originally found footing atop comic books and the artists and authors who brought the books to life. Now, the conventions are a melting pot of everything pop culture, with films and television often taking center stage. Fortunately, most comic cons still dedicate floor space and panel time to artists, authors, and the in-betweens, and Denver Comic Con 2017 had them all in spades. Artist Valley and Author Alley overflowed with local and non-local sketchers, scribblers, painters, printers, and aspiring/established professionals of all ilks, and I took a step away from the panel halls to talk to a few artists that caught my eye at DCC this year.

I won’t sugar coat the offerings and say there weren’t handfuls of copy-and-paste pop culture prints on display, booths full of iconic characters barely given enough glossy shine or a metallic finish to sell, but hidden between the metal prints and the 16×20 staples were a few gems. I was particularly drawn to the work of Mike Maydak, the Atomic Pixies, and Keith P. Rein (whose work is a bit NSFW, so consider yourself warned).

Read some back and forth and take a look at artwork from these three artists spotlighted by Midroad Movie Review at Denver Comic Con 2017 after the jump.



DCC2017: Cosplay photography spotlight from Denver Comic Con

DCC2017 Denver Comic Con Cosplay

Denver Comic Con 2017 Cosplay Kicked Ass

Denver Comic Con 2017 (#DCC2017) came and went last weekend, and with it hordes of fans fit and fashioned costumes from all corners of the pop culture spectrum. For a convention that’s overcome its growing pains, and hurdled last-minute celebrity guest cancellations year after year, DCC 2017 was a rousing success. It had been five years since I’d walked the halls of the Colorado Convention Center in downtown Denver for the annual event, and 2017 was the first time I was fortunate enough to attend as media, so memories of comic con were hazy going in at best. Camera in hand, heavy bag slung over my shoulder (which I ditched after Day 1), I hit the floor last Friday determined to shoot awesome cosplayers, establish my bearings for the long weekend ahead, and make the most of Denver Comic con as both media and maniac. I’m convinced that’s what every single one of you crazy cosplay enthusiasts and comic con attendees were (especially after watching the entry line shuffle through each day)–maniacs of the highest order! I put together a fun DCC 2017 time lapse video as proof.

Whether you attended this year’s Denver Comic Con and are looking for photos of yourself or weren’t able to attend and want to vicariously live the experience through kick ass cosplay photos, you’ll enjoy the cosplay photography spotlight gallery shot by Midroad Movie Review during the 2017 convention! Check it out after the jump.