Venganza Media Gazette

Tech, TV, Movies, Games, and More

Star Wars Toy Sales Down as “Movie Fatigue” Sets In

Are you suffering from “Movie Tie-In Fatigue?”

Per a Bloomberg article, Star Wars toy sales are down. Specifically adult collectors are still buying (but, judging by some “fan” sites, they’re complaining the entire time they shop); however, kids have less interest in the Star Wars toys.

The article states: “While ‘Star Wars’ was still the top-selling toy line during the nine-week holiday period, sales fell from 2016 and the brand lost its No. 1 position for the year…This was despite “Last Jedi” being the top-grossing film released in the U.S. last year “

The most telling quotes? “Adult collectors, who grew up with the brand, are still buying a lot of merchandise when the toys come out, but demand dies down afterward… That doesn’t bode well for Hasbro, which has the main “Star Wars” toy partnership, or Jakks Pacific Inc., which has a secondary license. ”

What do you think? Is the problem fatigue? Is a new movie per year too much? Is it the types of toys offered? Why do YOU think sales are down?  Let us know in the comments!

January 19, 2018 Posted by | Comic Books, Movies, Movies & Television, News, Now Playing Podcast, Podcasts, Star Wars, Star Wars Action News | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Hellraiser – Pinhead’s JUDGMENT – A Video Interview With Paul T. Taylor

Hosted by Arnie Carvalho

In the tenth HELLRAISER film a new actor gets nailed with the starring role — Paul T. Taylor. In this video Taylor discusses his acting past, how he got the role, how the production went, and his hopes on how the new HELLRAISER: JUDGMENT is judged by fans!

Join Arnie and Paul now in this spoiler-free behind-the-scenes look at this upcoming Hellraiser film!

January 18, 2018 Posted by | Movies, Movies & Television, News, Now Playing Podcast, Podcasts | , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment

New Podcast: Now Playing — The King of Kong: A Fistful of Quarters

Hosted by Arnie Carvalho, Stuart Atkinson, and Justin Kozisek

The Now Playing Arcade is now open!  Justin, Stuart, and Arnie are reviewing every movie based on a video game in a new retrospective that kicks off with The King Of Kong. Is this 2006 documentary about the heyday of coin-op machines (and the geeks who never stopped playing them) worth your quarters? Listen now and find out!

January 16, 2018 Posted by | Movies, Movies & Television, News, Now Playing Podcast, Podcasts, Video Games | Leave a Comment

THOR: RAGNAROK Video Release: Streaming Feb 20, Disc Mar 6

Marvel’s God of Thunder will roar in your home starting next month!

One of 2017’s biggest super hero movies, and recipient of three green arrows from the Now Playing Podcast criticsThor: Ragnarok will strike digitally in HD and 4K Ultra HD on Feb. 20. The 4k Ultra HD and Blu-ray discs will follow on March 6.

The 4k Blu-ray release will include HDR as well as Dolby Atmos audio.

The movie will also be part of the digital “Movies Anywhere” program where a digital copy purchased at a participating digital retailer will be available through all of the following platforms: Amazon Video, Google Play, iTunes and Vudu

In Marvel Studios’ “Thor: Ragnarok,” Thor (Chris Hemsworth) is imprisoned on the other side of the universe without his mighty hammer and finds himself in a race against time to get back to Asgard to stop Ragnarok – the destruction of his home world and the end of Asgardian civilization – at the hands of an all-powerful new threat, the ruthless Hela (Cate Blanchett). But first he must survive a deadly gladiatorial contest that pits him against his former ally and fellow Avenger – the Incredible Hulk (Mark Ruffalo) – and grapple with his silver-tongued adopted brother Loki (Tom Hiddleston), the fierce warrior Valkyrie (Tessa Thompson) and the eccentric Grandmaster (Jeff Goldblum).

Fans who bring home the Ultimate Cinematic Universe Edition (4K Ultra HD + Blu-ray + Digital) of “Thor: Ragnarok” will experience all the thunderous action and lightning-fast wit in stunning 4K Ultra HD with next-generation high dynamic range (HDR) visuals and Dolby Atmos immersive audio. Exclusive, never-before-seen bonus features include deleted scenes; hilarious outtakes; an exclusive short: part three of the mockumentary “Team Thor,” retitled “Team Darryl” and featuring an eccentric new roommate; the evolution of MCU’s heroes culminating in “Avengers: Infinity War;” numerous making-of featurettes which explore the unique vision of director Taika Waititi; the story’s unstoppable women; the effortlessly charismatic Korg; the tyrannical leader of Sakaar, the Grandmaster; and the film’s comic-book origins;  audio commentary by Waititi; and more.

You can hear Now Playing Podcast’s review of the film now.   Stay tuned for a review of the 4k Blu-Ray set when available.

See below for further release specifications:

Bonus features may vary by retailer, but there are disc and digital exclusive videos:

  • Blu-ray:

    • Director’s Introduction
    • Deleted/Extended Scenes – Deleted Scenes: The Sorcerer Supreme, Skurge Finds Heimdall & Hulk Chases Thor Through Sakaar and Extended Scenes: Thor Meets the Grandmaster, Stupid Avenger vs. Tiny Avenger & Grandmaster and Topaz
    • Gag Reel – Watch a collection of goofs, gaffes and pratfalls starring the cast
    • Exclusive Short/Team Darryl – Fresh off being unseated as the ruler of Sakaar, the Grandmaster makes his way to Earth to start a new life. It’s been over a year since Thor left Australia and Darryl has been struggling to pay his rent. Now Darryl needs a new roommate to help make the monthly payments. Unfortunately for Darryl, the Grandmaster was the only one who answered Darryl’s “Roommate Needed” ad and with no viable options, the Grandmaster moves in.
    • Marvel Studios: The First Ten Years – The Evolution of Heroes – Marvel’s universe is vast and transcends both time and space. We’ll examine the Cinematic Universe as a whole and revisit each of our heroes’ current location and their place in the current MCU timeline, as it all leads up to the one culminating event: “Avengers: Infinity War.”
    • Getting in Touch with Your Inner Thor – “Thor: Ragnarok” director Taika Waititi has brought his unique sensibility and sense of humor to the film in a great many ways but it is the evolution of Thor’s own sense of humor, which stands out the most in the new film. This piece explores the impact Chris Hemsworth has made on the development of his widely-loved character and celebrates the mighty cast and crew who reveal the fun and hard work that went into assembling Thor’s eccentric counterparts.
    • Unstoppable Women: Hela & Valkyrie – This piece explores the strong female characters in “Thor: Ragnarok,” their importance in the MCU, their incredible casting and their epic comic origins.
    • Finding Korg – A tongue-in-cheek interview with Taika on casting Korg. He describes the difficult search for just the right evolution of the character design, and the nuances of this instantly classic character in the MCU. This conversation will also delve into all the extraordinary visual effects that brought Korg, Sakaar and the worlds of “Thor: Ragnarok” to life.
    • Sakaar: On the Edge of the Known and Unknown – Sakaar is the collection point for all lost and unloved things. This documentary will answer all known and unknown questions while also exploring the hard work and creativity that went into creating the look and feel of Sakaar. From design inspired by Jack Kirby’s classic artwork to the dedication of the visual development team to the awe-inspiring physical and digital production, you will see this distant world come alive.
    • Journey into Mystery – A deep dive story piece with the writers, director and producer Kevin Feige about the inspirations for “Thor: Ragnarok” within the comics. Most notably, the contest of champions limited series where the Grandmaster pitted our favorite heroes against one another as he does in the film. This piece also further explores Thor’s comic book origins and classic arcs through interviews with some of the most important comic creators, such as Walt Simonson and Jack Kirby.
    • 8bit Scenes – Final Bridge Battle + Sakaar Spaceship Battle. Dive into these climactic sequences presented in retro video-game format.
    • Directors Commentary

    Digital Exclusives:

    • Evolution of Thor and Hulk’s Bromance – We’ll examine this Super Hero friendship, which has spanned through several Marvel films. From their original Helicarrier fight match to the now iconic Hulk punch from Avengers 1, see how Marvel’s most powerful Super Heroes become the most extraordinary Super Hero buddies.
    • Additional Deleted Scenes – Travel to Asgard & Race To The Wormhole

 

DISC SPECIFICATIONS (applies to film content only):

  • Product SKUs:   Cinematic Universe Edition (4K UHD+Blu-ray+Digital), Multi-Screen Edition (Blu-ray+DVD+Digital), Digital HD/SD/4K UHDDVD and On-Demand
  • Feature Run Time: Approximately 130 minutes
  • Rating: PG-13
  • Aspect Ratio: 2.39:1
  • Audio:
  • UHD BD: English Dolby Atmos 7.1.4, English & Spanish 7.1 Dolby Digital Plus, French Canadian 5.1 Dolby Digital, English DVS 2.0 Dolby Digital
  • Blu-ray: English 7.1 DTS-HDMA, Spanish & French Canadian 5.1 Dolby Digital, English DVS 2.0 Dolby Digital
  • DVD: English, Spanish & French Canadian 5.1 Dolby Digital, English DVS 2.0 Dolby Digital
  • Digital UHD: English Dolby Atmos 7.1.4, English DVS 2.0 Dolby Digital
  • Digital HD: English & French Canadian 5.1 Dolby Digital, Spanish 2.0 Dolby Digital, English DVS 2.0 Dolby Digital
  • Languages/Subtitles:               UHD BD: English SDH, Spanish, French Canadian
  • Blu-ray: English SDH, Spanish, French Canadian
  • DVD: English SDH & CC, Spanish, French Canadian
  • Digital UHD: English CC, Spanish, French Canadian
  • Digital HD: English CC, Spanish, French Canadian

January 10, 2018 Posted by | Comic Books, Marvelicious Toys, Movies, Movies & Television, News, Now Playing Podcast, Podcasts | Leave a Comment

New Podcast: Now Playing — Jeepers Creepers

Hosted by Arnie Carvalho, Marjorie Carvalho, and Stuart Atkinson

Arnie, Marjorie, and Stuart have caught the scent of a new horror icon… The Creeper!  And Jeepers, the lengths this supernatural scavenger will go to get some new eyes!  Will road-tripping siblings Justin Long and Gina Phillips stay ahead of the monster truck driver and avoid a psychic’s dire vision of their future?  And can the podcasters overlook the controversy that plagues writer-director Victor Salva?  Donate Today and find out!

January 5, 2018 Posted by | Movies, Movies & Television, News, Now Playing Podcast, Podcasts | Leave a Comment

New Podcast: Star Wars Action News Episode 499: The Last Jedi Roundtable

Hosted by Arnie Carvalho, Marjorie Carvalho, Daryl Whitlow, Andrew Harrison, Justin Kozisek, Curtis Stevenson, Steve Nixon, and Chris.

Star Wars Episode VIII: The Last Jedi has earned a billion dollars, is loved by critics, but also seems to divide fans online. Now the Star Wars Action News team comes together to give their reviews–and they’re divided as well. Join them to find out where the common ground lies, and their excitement for Solo in this new Star Wars Action News podcast!

January 3, 2018 Posted by | Conventions, Movies, Movies & Television, News, Now Playing Podcast, Star Wars Action News | Leave a Comment

New Podcast: Now Playing — The Disaster Artist

Hosted by Arnie Carvalho, Stuart Atkinson, and Jakob Conkling

Cult audiences love midnight movie The Room for being crazy melodrama, but the story of how it got made might be even more nuts.  Does James Franco show his talent, or just his ass, stepping into the skin of wannabe writer/director/actor Tommy Wiseau?  And will Arnie, Jakob, and Stuart find a new appreciation for this Disaster Artist when the truth behind his bad plots is dramatized?  Listen now and find out!  

December 31, 2017 Posted by | Movies, Movies & Television, News, Now Playing Podcast, Podcasts | Leave a Comment

New Podcast: Books & Nachos — Twin Peaks: The Final Dossier by Mark Frost

Hosted by Arnie Carvalho and Stuart Atkinson

This year’s Twin Peaks: The Return revival polarized audiences and seemed to ask as many questions as it answered. With that series complete, series writer Mark Frost is free to discuss it all in Twin Peaks: The Final Dossier — the intended final book based on Twin Peaks. Join Stuart and Arnie now to find out if Peaks goes out on a high note!

December 31, 2017 Posted by | Books & Nachos, Movies & Television, News, Podcasts | Leave a Comment

Marjorie’s Top 10 Films of 2017

by Marjorie Carvalho

 

 

10. Kong: Skull Island

I expected not to like this movie and was pleasantly surprised. A nice action film with some solid acting, it’s interesting enough to keep you watching. It seems as if they played fast and loose with the historical accuracies, and some of the characters actions don’t make sense (looking at you Tom Hiddleston) but it was an enjoyable movie.

9. The Belko Experiment

An over the top gore fest written by James Gunn, The Belko Experiment is full of inventive kills, human prey and suspense. A mysterious voice tells captive office employees that 2 employees must be killed or double that will die. The audience, nor the characters, are given any clues as to why this is happening or who is responsible. Trapped inside the office, things turn chaotic and brutal. The twist ending is original and an oddly satisfying end for the movie.

8. It

If the opening scene of this movie doesn’t get you, I don’t know if you have a heart. Little Georgie’s encounter with Pennywise is terrifying, sad and had me on the edge of my seat. The children in this movie are all fantastic actors and Bill Skarsgard undeniably scary as Pennywise. While it felt a little long in places, it still delivered creepiness and I’m looking forward to part 2.

Now Playing will review It (2017)It (1990) and the It sequel upon its release September 6, 2019.

7. Baby Driver

A crime caper by Edgar Wright shines due to it’s stellar use of music as a character. From the opening scene, down to the end scene, music is as part of this movie as any human. The soundtrack is eminently playable. In addition to the music, the visuals are top notch. A coffee run early in the movie, filmed continuously is a great sequence, almost like a music video. And let’s not forget the clean cut Jon Hamm portraying a foul mouthed criminal.

Hear Now Playing’s full review of Baby Driver

6. Logan

Wolverine is by far my favorite X-Men character and until Logan, he had not had a proper movie to showcase his tortured soul. With self healing powers, he has suffered while those around him have perished and he is left caring for a demented Professor X in a strange future with self driving cars. When he meets a child with similar powers, I feared he would turn fatherly, when instead we get a meaningful redemption movie and the door left open for future X-Men.

Hear Now Playing’s full review of Logan

5. The Disaster Artist

A movie about the making of the worst movie of all time might be one of the best movies of 2017. James Franco, along with brother Dave, make you feel both pity and empathy for Tommy Wiseau and Greg Sestero. Dave really pulls off the earnest star seeking Greg while James, well, he is Tommy better than Tommy can be Tommy. Both Franco brothers really shine in this movie. You don’t need to have seen The Room to get the jokes or the movie, it’s enough itself so you never feel like you are missing anything.

Hear Now Playing’s full review of The Room now. The full The Disaster Artist review will be out 1/31!

4. Atomic Blonde

If the 80’s were a movie, this would be it. From the stellar New Wave soundtrack to the use of neon, and the Hasselhoff nod, Atomic Blonde is thoroughly 80’s. Charlize Theron is seriously badass in her role as a spy, while James McEvoy was great as a spy who has spent too much time in Berlin. Between double agents, and brutal fight scenes, you still don’t know who is double crossing who.  The cold gray and starkness of the Berlin on both sides of the wall adds a dreariness to this movie in stark contrast to the bright neon and music of the decade.

 

Hear Now Playing’s full review of Atomic Blonde

3. I, Tonya

A tongue in cheek biopic about the everyone’s favorite working class hero Tonya Harding, I, Tonya paints a brutal picture of her upbringing, as well as her tumultuous marriage to Jeff Gillooly (Sebastian Stan) leading into “The Incident” and its aftermath. Margot Robbie’s Harding is wickedly trashy and Allison Janney, playing Tonya’s mom, is a national treasure. Often breaking the 4th wall, this movie doesn’t get too serious, how can you when the actual events are crazier than any movie?

2. Ingrid Goes West

In a hard to look at portrayal of social media in our lives, Ingrid Goes West shows what happens when reality can’t be separated from social media. Ingrid moves to California because an Instagram influencer, Taylor, replied to her comment. She then works her way into Taylor’s life via kidnapping Taylor’s dog. It’s painful to watch Ingrid attempt to achieve #bestie status with Taylor, it’s so #desperate and #cringeworthy but you can’t stop watching. Aubrey Plaza is astounding as awkward Ingrid and her performance makes you feel sorry for Ingrid, even when she is making bad decisions.

1. The Big Sick

At times sweet, and at times heartbreaking, Kumail Nanjiani true story of the courtship of his wife is a great story. Not only does he stand by when his estranged girlfriend falls seriously ill, he also wins over her parents while at the same time, trying to break free from his parents and Pakistani traditions. Though a bit long, the movie is touching and sweet and that mushy stuff I usually don’t fall for.
 

Marjorie Carvalho is a movie critic on Now Playing Podcast. Read more of her reviews in the Now Playing Podcast book–Underrated Movies We Recommend. You can also follow her on Twitter.

December 31, 2017 Posted by | Movies, Movies & Television, News, Now Playing Podcast, Podcasts, Reviews | Leave a Comment

Jakob’s 10 Notable Films for 2017

by Jakob Conkling

I feel I’ve never seen an adequate number of films to declare of “best of” until at least half way into the next year. As of writing this, I haven’t seen many of the films I’ve been anticipating in 2017, such as The Shape of Water, Phantom Thread, and Baywatch. Rather, here are 10 films that stood out to me (and focusing—with one exception—on films not reviewed on the podcast) for better or for worse in 2017…

 
A Dog’s Purpose

Worst film of 2017

This story of a dog’s soul inhabiting various breeds is saccharine drudgery. Marketed as a family film, have fun dealing with your crying children, moms and dads! The movie believes reincarnation makes numerous dog death less traumatic for kids (and pet-loving adults). WRONG! Melodramatic, sappy, manipulative trash; I hope Dennis Quaid wishes finds a real life shrink ray from Inner Space so he can disappear from the public eye for staring in this. This film’s only redemption is that it can never be worse than Kevin Spacey-turned-cat in Nine Lives.

The Great Wall

Most entertaining bad movie of 2017

Matt Damon speaks in a baffling, generic European accent not heard since Kevin Costner’s in Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves. Costume design inspired by the Power Ranger’s colorful armor. Willem Defoe looks as confused as I was about why he was on set. There is a whole wing of the military dedicated to fighting monsters via bungee jumping (with inelastic rope???). And the evil creatures having a weakness so bizarre, you’ll be asking, like the Insane Clown Posse, “Magnets? How do they work?”

Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets

Best first five minutes in a 2017 movie

Luc Besson’s Valerian is a galaxy-sized mess but features an awe inspiring first five minutes. Set to David Bowie’s “Space Oddity,” various nations of Earth come together on an international space station, and then are joined by aliens across the universe. It’s full of the optimism and discovery space travel can arouse. Truly, it is a moment of genius that balances out this very uneven film from its most embarrassing moments (any scene featuring Rihanna as a shape-shifting burlesque dancer).

Batman & Bill

My favorite documentary of 2017

Liked the caped crusader, documentarian Don Argott seeks justice. While everyone knows about Batman’s credited creator, Bob Kane, there was another. Behind the scenes, Bill Finger contributed the most iconic elements to the Dark Knight. Finger died alone in poverty and, reportedly, buried in a potter’s field. Argott’s journey for an eligible heir to bring suit against DC Entertainment to have Finger’s name added to the creator byline is full of twists and reveals in this engaging journey for recognition.

The Founder

Best anti-commercial of 2017

I was expecting another (alleged) heartwarming, inspiring ad for a giant corporation the way Saving Mr. Banks tried to convince me Disney knows best and was the savior for a financially struggling artist. While Michael Keaton brings a lot of charm with his portrayal of down-on-his-luck, milkshake-mixer salesman Ray Kroc, the actor is equally capable of depicting the sinister turn Kroc takes as he steals the McDonald’s brand from the brothers who conceived the fast food restaurant. Forget about the high calorie count in its food, this dark tale of capitalistic greed preying on naive innovators should keep you away from purchasing that next Big Mac.

I Don’t Feel at Home in This World Anymore

The best Sundance film that went straight to Netflix in 2017

Having starred in violent thrillers Blue Ruin and Green Room, Macon Blair’s directorial debut reframes those movies’ violence and tension into a dark comedy. Melanie Lynskey plays Ruth who undergoes an existential crisis after her house is robbed. She befriends Tony (Elijah Wood), a religious, heavy metal loving, ninja-weapons enthusiasts. The two go about reclaiming Ruth’s stolen property; but, their attempt at vigilante justice goes horribly wrong. Funny, violent, quirky, tense, bittersweet. The film hits the right beats to balance its various tones to create a comedic thriller.

Get Out

Best 2017 film reviewed on Now Playing

Patrons have heard my thoughts (along with Arnie’s and Stuart’s). A smart and tense social commentary on race in America, Get Out isn’t only relevant but also a masterfully crafter horror-thriller. Sketch-show-comedian-turned-director Jordan Peele obviously loves horror and has studied the greats in this story that warns us about the dehumanizing effects of racism even if the stereotypes are positive. Reviewed on the podcast or not, this film deserves to be recognized on any top movie list.

Hear Now Playing’s Full Review of Get Out

A Ghost Story

Best 2017 movie based on It’s the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown

I only slightly jest. Looking at the poster of Casey Affleck dressed as a ghost—wearing a sheet with eye-holes cut out—I thought I was in for an indie comedy. Rather, this is a poetic story of the living haunting the dead. The camera holds on images until you stop asking what their narrative purpose are and, rather, focus on what you feel in each moment. Never have the folds and frayed edges of a bed sheet portrayed so much loss and sorrow. Director David Lowery channels Terrance Malick and Stanley Kubrick with this slow paced, beautifully framed journey through time and the cosmos.

 

Detroit

Best film of 2017 most have an opinion about based on their politics before even seeing it

Political. Polarizing. Inflammatory. If you’re inclined to ignore this film because you think you know what it is, I ask then to focus on the craft. Katheryn Bigelow has created one of the tensest hours in film as she retells the Algiers Motel Killings during the 1967 Detroit 12th Street Riot. I would hope that anyone could watch this film and walk away with a little more understanding of why people of color have a seemingly innate fear of police authority. Fifty years later and these real life events feel more relevant than ever.

Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri

Best acted film of 2017

There’s good reason Frances McDormand and Sam Rockwell received Golden Globe nominations for their acting in this film about horrible people trying to cope with loss and hard times in the unhealthiest of ways. Even Woody Harrelson and Caleb Landry Jones (who plays the opposite of his menacing character from Get Out) are at the top of their game. Writer-director Martin McDonagh knows how the audience expects this movie to play out and, therefore, zigs when we expect it to zag to create an unpredictable, emotional story of damaged characters.

 

Jakob Conkling is a movie critic on Now Playing Podcast. Read more of his reviews in the Now Playing Podcast book–Underrated Movies We Recommend

December 29, 2017 Posted by | Movies, Movies & Television, Now Playing Podcast, Podcasts | Leave a Comment

New Podcast: Now Playing — Hellraiser: Revelations

Hosted by Arnie Carvalho, Stuart Atkinson, and Jakob Conkling

A weekend in Tijuana goes to hell when two LA party boys open the infamous Cenobite puzzle box.  Relatives back home try to piece together their missing sons’ fate by perusing footage found on a camcorder, but the real Revelations come when fans get a good look at Stephen Smith Collins – the new face of Pinhead.  Donate today to hear Arnie, Jakob, and Stuart tear into this ninth installment of the Hellraiser retrospective series!

December 29, 2017 Posted by | Movies, Movies & Television, News, Now Playing Podcast, Podcasts | Leave a Comment

Arnie’s Top 10 Films (and Bottom 1) of ’17

by Arnie Carvalho

2017 was a bit of a rough year for blockbusters, but I did see some all-time great films.  As archived per my ratings on Letterboxd, here are the 10 best new films I saw this year.

 

10. The LEGO Batman Movie

In January this year DC superheroes seemed doomed. Other than the Christopher Nolan Batman trilogy, these heroes couldn’t catch a break. Warner Bros’ new Justice League universe of films stumbled repeatedly. But, apart from all that, the filmmakers at LEGO created the best DC superhero film since Nolan’s The Dark Knight with The LEGO Batman Movie.  Batman, voiced by Will Arnett, has an emotional character arc but the film never forgets to amuse as it teaches. The lampooning of other Batman movies, plus the inclusion of so many Batman baddies, and bad guys from surprising places, it’s a solid POW of enjoyment that bests both Wonder Woman and Justice League as best DC film of the year!

Hear Now Playing’s full review of The LEGO Batman Movie

9. Atomic Blonde

It’s a great time for kick-ass women in movies. The epitome of that seems to be Furiosa, Charlize Theron’s one-armed warrior in Mad Max: Fury Road.  Theron continues her streak with Atomic Blonde–a cold-war era period piece spy film.  Theron plays MI6 agent Lorraine Broughton. On the surface she’s “Jane Bond”, but when the fights begin she pulls out fight moves that would take Bond out with one kick. The action is balanced with great performances from Theron, James McAvoy, and Sofia Boutella, and scored to a slew of ’80s New Wave hits. The fights and the story make this the movie I wished Kingsman: The Golden Circle had been.

Hear Now Playing’s full review of Atomic Blonde

8. Logan Lucky

Stephen Soderbergh’s Ocean’s Eleven holds a special place in my heart for being the epitome of the ensemble heist movie. But I don’t need to wait for next year’s Ocean’s Eight to experience that same thrill–Soderberg recaptured that magic with Logan Lucky.  The movie follows a group of blue collar criminals who plan to rob the Charlotte Motor Speedway. The able cast keeps our allegiance with the criminals, and the plot has more turns than the Speedway itself. The script is tight and the characters fun. Forget Ocean’s Twelve or Thirteenthis is Soderbergh’s best follow-up to Ocean’s Eleven.

7. The Disaster Artist

The Room is widely considered the worst film ever made–a Rocky Horror for the 21st Century. When a film is that obviously broken, where is the fun in picking it apart? Can there be a bigger punchline than the film itself? James Franco clearly proved the answer to be “Yes.” Disaster Artist starts off like many movies of wannabe actors dreaming of becoming stars in Los Angeles–but one of these wannabes is the mysterious and strange Tommy Wiseau. In that way the first half of the movie feels like a comedy-drama. But when Tommy has the idea to write, produce, and fund the picture himself the laughs truly begin. Rarely is Tommy the butt of the jokes (pun intended), but his actions, borne of ignorance, are funny just the same.

You don’t need to have seen The Room to understand the comedy of The Disaster Artist — but it helps. Either way, the film is a sensitive and funny portrayal of perhaps the most enigmatic figures in Hollywood.

Hear Now Playing’s full review of The Room now. The full The Disaster Artist review will be out 1/31!

6. Blade Runner 2049

 Blade Runner is one of the all-time great sci-fi movies, and great noir detective films. There was great skepticism in my mind if 35 years later any follow-up could match the original.  Blade Runner 2049 doesn’t quite hit that mark, but it is close.

The plot centers around new Blade Runner K, played by Ryan Gosling. On his latest mission K uncovers a trail that may indicate he may be the first child ever born to a supposedly-sterile replicant. And not just any replicant–Rachel, the love of Rick Deckard (Harrison Ford reprising his role from the original).

With this plot 2049 takes the subtext from the original, the never answered “is Deckard a replicant” question, and makes it the plot. Is K a new messiah for replicants, or is he all-too-human?

More, 2049 deepens the series’ mythology. We learn replicants are not androids, there’s no circuitry inside those bodies, they are simply genetically engineered and constructed beings. “If you cut them, do they not bleed?” This makes the “retiring” of replicants even more cagey, for how human are they? Do they have a soul?

2049 also has a love story that mirrors the original–our protagonist in love with a machine. Only now, like in Her, it is his personal assistant. It begs the question of what love means, and is love strictly human.

With a visual style that echos the original while making it to heights of nearly-unreal color and a score that, while not being by Vangelis, is a suitably atmospheric replacement, Blade Runner 2049 is a feast for the eyes, ears, and mind…be that mind natrual-born or created.

Hear Now Playing’s full review of Blade Runner 2049

5. IT

 I’m seemingly one of the few who remembers the 1990 TV-miniseries It as being a dull, sometimes laughable, failure. Trailers for this new theatrical It had me thinking it would repeat the mistakes of the past. I simply couldn’t envision, even from trailers, how a supernatural clown played by Bill Skarsgård could be scary.

I was dead wrong.

It was a suspenseful, terrifying horror film. It’s ’80s setting did make it seem like a Stranger Things clone, but unlike that Netflix series It never pulls It’s punches. Skarsgård is indeed chilling as Pennywise the Clown, and while his screen time is minimal, his presence permeates every frame of It. Aided by solid performances by its young cast, It restored King’s cinematic legacy to glory (let’s just all forget about The Dark Tower) and has me salivating for the 2019 conclusion!

Now Playing will review It (2017)It (1990) and the It sequel upon its release September 6, 2019.

4. Ingrid Goes West

In an era of YouTube celebrities and Instagram professionals, people measure their self-worth through “likes” and retweets. Doctors have recently discovered that social media is not just a psychological addiction, these online interactions and responses trigger a dopamine high. Getting your post “liked” can chemically make you feel as good as a hug.

This idea is taken to its extreme in Ingrid Goes West, a dramatic comedy starring Aubrey Plaza as an aimless young woman obsessed with Instagram, and the perfect lifestyles portrayed in that media. We watch as she tries to shape her life as many people shape what they share online. It’s a manipulative car-wreck from which I couldn’t look away. Plaza shows a dramatic range I’d not seen in her mostly comedic filmography, and it enabled me to root for her while knowing tragedy is inevitable. It helps that most movie-goers will be able to relate to her obsessive phone-checking. It’s a film that has a message I endorse, and performances that rivet.

3. Thor: Ragnarok

Of the original Avengers‘  movies, Iron Man, Captain America, Hulk, and Thor, the Thor franchise is the one that hasn’t found a footing. It took Ragnarok — the mythic Norse view of apocalypse — to give actor Chris Hemsworth the superhero he deserves. Literally, everything about Thor is wiped away over the course of this film, including his mighty hammer and his homeworld (and these aren’t spoilers–they’re in every trailer).  Yet with all the cataclysmic events, Thor: Ragnarok finds its heart in Guardians of the Galaxy-esque humor. Of course the “He’s a friend from work” line was (over)played in the trailers, but from start to finish Ragnarok left me with a smile on my face…and a lead-in to 2018’s Avengers: Infinity War.

Though Guardians of the Galaxy Vol 2 was released this year, Ragnarok was the film that best captured the mirth and magic of 2014’s original Guardians and has become my favorite film in Phase 3 of the Marvel Cinematic Universe.

Hear Now Playing’s full review of Thor: Ragnarok

2. The Belko Experiment

Odds are you’ve seen The Belko Experiment. While the movie only grossed $11 million worldwide, you’ve still seen it. Perhaps it bore the name Battle Royale, or The Hunger Games — movies in which groups of people are trapped in an arena and forced to murder each other. Those who don’t will have their heads blown off by explosives planted on their bodies.

But Belko sets itself apart by adding in a healthy dose of humor. In this movie the setting is an office building in Columbia filled with American employees. The usual corporate alliances and rivalries are stretched to homicidal extremes, with fun results. It helps that our protagonist Mike, played by John Gallagher Jr., bears a striking resemblance in both looks and performance to John Krasinski, making this feel like the best Office series finale ever!

With a dose of Cabin in the Woods type world-building, Belko was my single biggest cinematic surprise of 2017. I walked in expecting okay horror–and walked out with a grin on my face having had a great time. That is one successful Experiment

1. Baby Driver

If for no other reason than the three-minute continuous, highly choreographed, opening credits sequence scored to “Harlem Shuffle” Baby Driver is the best made, most artistically ambitious film I saw this year.  Yet it has so much more going on than just that spotlight scene. The car chases are equally devised (and done almost entirely practically) creating a vehicular dance that is mesmerizing to behold. It’s a musical in which they only sing along to songs they’re playing, and most of the dancing is done on four wheels, but I can’t look away.

The soundtrack has been on near-constant rotation in my life since the movie’s June release. I can’t get enough of it.

More, the film has heart. Ansel Elgort’s Baby may be a criminal getaway driver, but his caring for his deaf foster father Joe, his pure love for waitress Debora, and his “one last job” mentality make him a complex, yet relatable, hero.  Add in some Edgar Wright humor (the sunglasses scene is pure gold), a stellar cast, and as many plot turns as U-turns, and Baby Driver speeds past every other movie to be my top of 2017.

 

Hear Now Playing’s full review of Baby Driver

I think that’s your franchise going down in flames

Worst of the year: Transformers – The Last Knight

And I’d like to give special mention to the absolute worst movie of the year:  Transformers: The Last Knight.

The movie was so loud, obnoxious, stupid, and incomprehensible that it makes Transformers 2 look like The Godfather Part II.  It’s complete abuse of respected and returning stars like Anthony Hopkins, Tyrese Gibson, Josh Duhamel, and Stanley Tucci is horrifying. And (other than Hopkins at Stonehenge) it’s not even funny-bad, it’s just excruciatingly painful to your ears and your mind. Don’t try to figure out the plot…this film is actually less than meets the eye.

Hear Now Playing’s full review of Transformers: The Last Knight

 

Arnie Carvalho is a movie critic on Now Playing Podcast. Read more of his reviews in the Now Playing Podcast book–Underrated Movies We Recommend. You can also follow his movie watching on Letterboxd, and his random ramblings on Twitter.

December 29, 2017 Posted by | Movies, Movies & Television, News, Reviews | 1 Comment

New Podcast: Now Playing — Lord of Illusions – Patron Exclusive Review

Hosted by Arnie Carvalho, Stuart Atkinson, and Jakob Conkling

It took a decade for Hellraiser director Clive Barker to realize the dream of bringing his cursed private eye Harry D’Amour to the big screen. Lord of Illusions was intended to launch Scott Bakula into a new hardboiled horror franchise, but box office black magic quickly shuttered Harry’s detective agency.  Will Arnie, Jakob, and Stuart join the character’s small cult of devotees when they exhume Clive’s final film for Now Playing Patrons? Sign up today and find out!

Become a Now Playing patron and you can hear this exclusive bonus review!

December 27, 2017 Posted by | Movies, Movies & Television, News, Now Playing Podcast, Podcasts | Leave a Comment

Stuart’s Top 10 Films of ’17

by Stuart Atkinson

This whole year seemed riddled with animosity, upheaval, and social breakdown – qualities reflected in most of my favorite 2017 films.    

 
10.  Downsizing – Hang the marketers for pushing this apocalyptic sci-fi story as a broad comedy.  It’s fairly short on jokes once Matt Damon gets small, and definitely leaves audiences uneasy with unanswered questions.  Still, I found Downsizing to be a thought-provoking look at a man who is never sure whether he should be living for himself or others.
09.  The Florida Project – A coming-of-age story that draws a sharp contrast between “have” and “have not” families.  A 6-year-old girl living in a fleabag motel gets into all kinds of trouble playing in trash created by neighboring Disney World.  I futilely tried to think of options available to single mom Halley that would lead to better outcomes, but ultimately left the theater just grateful I wasn’t a parent.
08.  Call Me By Your Name – Wealthy academics living in 1983 Italy might sound a world away from the dead-end squalor of Florida Project.  But both coming-of-age stories keenly demonstrate how problems in childhood can often go unspoken. Timothee Chalamet gives a remarkably intimate performance as a teenager wrestling with being gay and Jewish in a household where everyone can identify obscure artifacts, but no one dares to articulate their carnal desires.
07.  The Big Sick – Can a coma bring two cultures together?  Silicon Valley star Kumail Nanjiani wrote and starred in the best romantic comedy I’ve seen in ages (which becomes even more impressive when you find out its the true story of how this Pakistani comedian met his wife).
06.  The Disaster Artist  – Watching The Room is no longer enough.  Fans of “brown arrow” bad movies must also include a screening of behind-the-scenes tell-all The Disaster Artist.  It’s the role of a lifetime for James Franco to be able to star and direct himself as wannabe star/director Tommy Wiseau.

Hear Now Playing’s Full Review of The Room The Disaster Artist podcast will be released Sunday, 1/31!

05.  The Square – As fun and feel-good as The Disaster Artist is, I loved Swedish film The Square even more for taking a deeper dive into the tension between art and mainstream society.  It’s the story of a museum curator who desperately wants to provide context for the unexplainable nuttiness found in modern art, only to realize how little he knows about being a good man.   
04.  Good Time – I’m going to let Robert Pattinson out of movie jail after seeing how great he is as a failed bank robber going to extremes for his mentally slow brother.  The best way to enjoy Good Time is to go in knowing nothing (though I recommend putting lots of pillows on the floor to catch your dropping jaw once the crazy schemes begin).
03.  Get Out – Much has been made about this Blumhouse horror movie getting nominated for a Best Comedy Golden Globe.  But no genre label captures all the things that Get Out does so well.  From the tender romance between Daniel Kaluuya and Alison Williams, to the stinging social commentary about cultural appropriation, a climax full of blood and brain splatter, and yes the comedic stylings of scene-stealing TSA agent Rod… there’s something for every taste in this one.

Hear Now Playing’s Full Review of Get Out

02.  Detroit – I was shaking when I left Katherine Bigelow’s intense re-enactment of the 1967 Detroit race riots.  But then to come home, turn on the TV, and immediately see the fallout over Confederate statues in Charlottesville… it was like I never left the movie theater!  Detroit was too hot topic to succeed as escapist summer box office fare, but future generations will likely declare it one of the great summations of our times.
01.  Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri – Still, nobody captured small town American rage better than British writer-director Martin McDonagh.  His story of a grieving mother who takes to shaming the local police via unused billboard space held a mirror up to the world and dared us to laugh.  How WILL we ever come together if everyone thinks their pain gives them the right to lash out in whatever manner they see fit?  Watching Frances McDormand and Sam Rockwell squash their beef and head into an uncertain future together summed up everything I’ve been feeling in 2017… and advertised a sequel I desperately want to see (but assume they’ll never make).

 

Stuart Atkinson is a movie critic on Now Playing Podcast. Read more of his reviews in the Now Playing Podcast book–Underrated Movies We Recommend

December 27, 2017 Posted by | Movies, Movies & Television, News, Now Playing Podcast, Podcasts, Reviews | Leave a Comment

New Podcast: Now Playing — The Room

Hosted by Arnie Carvalho, Stuart Atkinson, and Jakob Conkling

 

Audiences have been tearing delusional actor/writer/director Tommy Wiseau apart for the last 14 years over his self-funded melodrama The Room. Can you ever really trust anyone who would recommend a movie this preposterous? Oh hi Jakob!  Three’s a crowd when the die hard Room-mate, his best friend Arnie, and manipulative bitch Stuart come together to explore this midnight movie phenomenon.

December 26, 2017 Posted by | Movies, Movies & Television, News, Now Playing Podcast, Podcasts | Leave a Comment

New Podcast: Now Playing — Hellraiser: Hellworld

Hosted by Arnie Carvalho, Stuart Atkinson, and Jakob Conkling

 

The eighth chapter of Hellraiser breaks the internet as it invites five online gamers (including Man of Steel Henry Cavill) to an all-night rave to the grave.  Party favors include roofies with Lance Henriksen, blow jobs from Butterface, and selfies with the Cenobites. Donate now and hear if Arnie, Jakob, and Stuart think Hellworld takes the franchise to the next level, or ruins Doug Bradley’s game in his final performance as Pinhea

December 22, 2017 Posted by | Movies, Movies & Television, News, Now Playing Podcast, Podcasts | Leave a Comment

New Podcast: Now Playing — Star Wars Episode VIII: The Last Jedi

Hosted by Arnie Carvalho, Stuart Atkinson, and Jakob Conkling

 

 

Episode VIII finds General Leia (Carrie Fisher), Poe Dameron (Oscar Isaac), Finn (John Boyega), and a dwindling number of Resistance fighters beating a hasty retreat from the rising armies of Supreme Leader Snoke (Andy Serkis). Their only hope lies with recently located Luke Skywalker (Mark Hamill) – The Last Jedi in the universe.  But can Master Luke trust feisty apprentice Rey (Daisy Ridley) to learn the ways of The Force without succumbing to the Dark Side like his previous pupil, the murderous tyrant Kylo Ren (Adam Driver)?  Join Arnie, Jakob, and Stuart for a deep dive into the biggest movie of 2017.

December 19, 2017 Posted by | Marvelicious Toys, Movies, Movies & Television, News, Podcasts, Star Wars, Star Wars Action News | Leave a Comment

New Podcast: Now Playing — Hellraiser: Deader

Hosted by Arnie Carvalho, Stuart Atkinson, and Jakob Conkling

Former MTV personality Kari Wuhrer’s career was Deader than the doornails in Pinhead’s face when she hopped a party train to Budapest, and signed up for the lead in a seventh Hellraiser movie.  But should the self-proclaimed crack whore put her faith in a cult leader who literally stabs his followers in the back?  Donate Today to hear if Arnie, Jakob, and Stuart’s prayers for another good entry in the franchise are answered

December 15, 2017 Posted by | Movies, Movies & Television, News, Now Playing Podcast, Podcasts | Leave a Comment

JIGSAW Coming to Blu-Ray and 4k January 9 — Bonus Features Announced

In the latest terrifying installment of the legendary SAW series, law enforcement find itself chasing the ghost of a man dead for over a decade, embroiled in a diabolical new game that’s only just begun.  Has John Kramer, the infamous Jigsaw Killer, returned from the dead to commit a series of murders and remind the world to be grateful for the gift of life?  Or is this a trap set by a different killer with designs of their own?

Immerse yourself within Jigsaw’s world with the release’s extensive Special Features, including an all-new 7-Part Documentary, an Audio Commentary with Producers Mark Burg, Oren Koules, and Peter Block, and “The Choice is Yours: Exploring the Props” featurette. The 4K Ultra HD and Blu-ray versions feature Dolby Atmos audio mixed specifically for the home, to place and move audio anywhere in the room, including overhead. The 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray also features Dolby Vision high dynamic range (HDR), growing Lionsgate’s library of titles featuring both Dolby Vision and Dolby Atmos. Dolby Vision transforms the TV experience in the home by delivering greater brightness and contrast, as well as a fuller palette of rich colors. Together with the captivating sound of Dolby Atmos, consumers will experience both cutting-edge imaging and state-of-the-art sound technology for a fully immersive entertainment experience.

The must-see Jigsaw will be available on 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray Combo Pack, Blu-ray Combo Pack, and DVD for the suggested retail price of $42.99, $39.99, and $29.95, respectively.

4K UHD / BLU-RAY SPECIAL FEATURES

  • Audio Commentary with Producers Mark Burg, Oren Koules, and Peter Block
  • “I Speak for the Dead: The Legacy of Jigsaw” 7-Part Documentary

o   “A New Game”

o   “You Know His Name”

o   “Survival of the Fittest”

o   “Death by Design”

o   “Blood Sacrifice”

o   “The Source of Fear”

o   “The Truth Will Set You Free”

  • “The Choice is Yours: Exploring the Props” Featurette

 

DIGITAL SPECIAL FEATURES

  • “I Speak for the Dead: The Legacy of Jigsaw” 7-Part Documentary

o   “A New Game”

o   “You Know His Name”

o   “Survival of the Fittest”

o   “Death by Design”

o   “Blood Sacrifice”

o   “The Source of Fear”

o   “The Truth Will Set You Free”

  • “The Choice is Yours: Exploring the Props” Featurette

 

DVD SPECIAL FEATURES

  • Audio Commentary with Producers Mark Burg, Oren Koules, and Peter Block
  • “The Choice is Yours: Exploring the Props” Featurette

 

Hear Now Playing’s review of Jigsaw then pre-order it now at Amazon!

December 15, 2017 Posted by | Movies, Movies & Television, News, Now Playing Podcast | Leave a Comment

New Podcast: Now Playing — 12 Monkeys

Hosted by Arnie Carvalho, Stuart Atkinson, and special guest Matt Wessel

In 12 Monkeys Bruce Willis plays James Cole – a man from the future who’s come to witness the start of an extinction-level pandemic. Or he’s insane, filled with a Cassandra complex. He encounters Brad Pitt’s Jeffrey Goines, who is insane, but also may know more than he’s letting on. Yet perhaps the real time traveler is nonconformist, eclectic director Terry Gilliam whose underrated 1995 film foreshadows both stars’ roles in more popular films. Now, join Arnie, Stuart, and guest host Matt as they travel back to 1995 and examine this dystopian sci-fi film.

December 12, 2017 Posted by | Movies, Movies & Television, News, Now Playing Podcast, Podcasts | Leave a Comment

New Podcast: Now Playing — Hellraiser: Hellseeker

Hosted by Arnie Carvalho, Stuart Atkinson, and Jakob Conkling

The sixth installment of Hellraiser goes searching for the series’ original Last Girl, Ashley Laurence.  But no one has seen Kirsty Cotton-Gooden since her shady husband Trevor (Dean Winters) drove their car off a bridge.  Eels and sex tapes are among the treasures that Hellseekers Arnie, Jakob, and Stuart dredge up as they mine the watery depths of the franchise.  Will they find some Green Arrows inside this DVD box too?  Donate Now and find out!

December 8, 2017 Posted by | Movies, Movies & Television, News, Now Playing Podcast, Podcasts | Leave a Comment

New Podcast: Now Playing — Death Sentence

Hosted by Arnie Carvalho, Stuart Atkinson, and Jakob Conkling

Saw director James Wan wished to leave the horror genre behind when he signed on to adapt Death Sentence – author Brian Garfield’s previously unmade sequel novel to Death Wish. A buttoned-down Kevin Bacon cuts loose, kicks off his Sunday shoes, and follows in the footsteps of Charles Bronson’s pistol packin’ Paul Kersey once a street gang targets his perfect family. Listen now and find out if Arnie, Jakob, and Stuart give this failed reboot a stay of execution.

December 5, 2017 Posted by | Movies, Movies & Television, News, Now Playing Podcast, Podcasts | Leave a Comment

New Podcast: Now Playing — Hellraiser IV: Bloodline

Hosted by Arnie Carvalho, Stuart Atkinson, and Jakob Conkling

Humble 18th Century toy maker Phillip L’Merchant put a curse on his Bloodline the day he manufactured a puzzle box that opened a portal to Hell.  Now it falls to L’Merchant’s descendants in modern day New York, as well as on a futuristic space station, to build a trap big enough to recapture demon Angelique and her Cenobite co-conspirator Pinhead. Donate now to hear Arnie, Jakob, and Stuart beam aboard this ambitious fourth installment of the Hellraiser franchise and boldly go where astro-slashers Jason Voorhees and the Leprechaun flopped before.

Jakob, and Stuart can find room in their hellbound hearts for this third installment of the Hellraiser franchise.

Now Playing is a podcast with no sponsors or advertisements. We rely solely on listener support to keep going. Our Fall 2017 Donation Drive is underway and from now through July 31, 2017, the Hellraiser Retrospective Series is available as a “thank you” to those who support Now Playing.

You can listen to this preview of the show for free now using the link above.

The full podcast series is available through a Paypal donation to Now Playing, or individual episodes are available on our Podbean page. Details can be found on our Spring 2017 Donation page.

Thank you in advance for your support of our show!

November 25, 2017 Posted by | Movies, Movies & Television, News, Now Playing Podcast, Podcasts | Leave a Comment

New Podcast: Star Wars Action News — Episode 498: Black Friday & Holiday Gift Guide 2017

Hosted by Marjorie Carvalho and Arnie Carvalho

Video by Berent Lawton and Daryl Whitlow

 

Happy Thanksgiving to all our listeners from the entire Star Wars Action News Team!

It’s time for Star Wars Action News’13th annual Black Friday sale report, and holiday gift guide!

Join Arnie & Marjorie as they tell you where the best savings are for Star Wars games, toys, and more.  Then the entire Star Wars Action News Team have gathered their ideas of the best Star Wars collectibles are this season. From books to games, figures big and small, and so much more, listen now to hear it all!

BLACK FRIDAY SALES

Toys

LEGO

Hot Toys

Books

Games

Household Items

Other

 

November 23, 2017 Posted by | Books, Comic Books, Movies, Movies & Television, News, Podcasts, Star Wars Action News | Leave a Comment

New Podcast: Now Playing — Justice League – Extended Cut for Patrons

Hosted by Jakob Conkling, Stuart Atkinson, and Arnie Carvalho

How does a DC Comics super-team come together when the Man of Steel is dead, Batman is suicidal, Wonder Woman won’t lead, and the most promising recruits are an aloof Merman, a renegade robot, and a neurotic runner who’d rather eat than fight?  It will take the Classic Rock threat of Steppenwolf, reuniting with the Mother Boxes of Invention, to unify this Justice League.  But is there any hope for Recommendations from Stuart, Jakob, and Arnie when the clashing visions of director Zack Snyder and last minute replacement Joss Whedon create such a chaotic production?  Find out who wins and loses when you listen now!

This is an special release only for Now Playing Patrons pledging $10 or more. This version of the show has over 30 minutes not included in the regular release! Sign up to be a Now Playing patron now and get this extended review as well as bonus and exclusive review podcasts! 

November 21, 2017 Posted by | Comic Books, Movies, Movies & Television, News, Now Playing Podcast, Podcasts | 1 Comment

New Podcast: Now Playing — Hellraiser III: Hell on Earth

 

Hosted by Jakob Conkling, Stuart Atkinson, and Arnie Carvalho

Pinhead is back and ready to turn New York City into a HELL ON EARTH! But first the Cenobite will need to convince a sadistic nightclub owner to free him from the carbonite confines of a modern art sculpture. Meanwhile a leggy TV journalist with daddy issues, partnering with a homeless Goth girl and the ghost of a WWI soldier, search for a way to put Pinhead back inside his box. Donate now to find out if Arnie, Jakob, and Stuart can find room in their hellbound hearts for this third installment of the Hellraiser franchise.

Now Playing is a podcast with no sponsors or advertisements. We rely solely on listener support to keep going. Our Fall 2017 Donation Drive is underway and from now through July 31, 2017, the Hellraiser Retrospective Series is available as a “thank you” to those who support Now Playing.

You can listen to this preview of the show for free now using the link above.

The full podcast series is available through a Paypal donation to Now Playing, or individual episodes are available on our Podbean page. Details can be found on our Spring 2017 Donation page.

Thank you in advance for your support of our show!

November 17, 2017 Posted by | Movies, Movies & Television, News, Now Playing Podcast, Podcasts | Leave a Comment

New Podcast — Now Playing: The LEGO Batman Movie – Patron Exclusive Review

Hosted by Arnie Carvalho, Stuart Atkinson, and Jakob Conkling

The LEGO Movie turned plastic bricks into box office gold. Now the world’s number one toy maker hopes to build upon that success with an entire LEGO Movie franchise. Its first installment took arguably the best supporting character from that first film and made him the star–Batman.  Is this comedic tale of The Dark Knight kiddie-only fare, or is there something Batfans of all ages can appreciate? Become a Now Playing Patron and you can listen and find out!

Become a Now Playing patron and you can hear this exclusive bonus review!

November 15, 2017 Posted by | Comic Books, Movies, Movies & Television, News, Now Playing Podcast | Leave a Comment

New Podcast – Star Wars Action News Episode 497: 2 Cons 1 Porg

Hosted by Marjorie Carvalho, Arnie Carvalho, Justin Kozisek, and Daryl Whitlow

This weekend is New York Comic-Con…or it might be called a mini Star Wars Celebration! There are dozens of Star Wars guests including Mark Hamill, Felicy Jones, Ashley Eckstein, plus Star Wars comic creators, artists, and more! On this Star Wars Action News, Marjorie and Arnie run down the Force-filled events at this con! Including an interview with Star Wars author Greg Stones, whose book 99 Stormtroopers Join the Empire is on sale now and he’ll be signing at the show!

Plus hear a first-hand report of Hasbro’s own HASCON convention! Arnie was there. Hear if this is a con you should plan on going to next year. Plus Arnie is joined by Steve Niven and Joe Ninivaggi from Hasbro for an exclusive interview talking more Star Wars Toys.

With an interview with Justin, owner of FigureShield protective cases, and an early report on Hasbro’s Han Solo movie figures, it’s all in this new Star Wars Action News podcast!
Source: Star Wars Action News

 

October 2, 2017 Posted by | Movies & Television, Podcasts, Star Wars Action News | | Comments Off on New Podcast – Star Wars Action News Episode 497: 2 Cons 1 Porg

New Podcast – Star Wars Action News Episode 496: Force Friday II

Hosted by Marjorie Carvalho, Arnie Carvalho, Justin Kozisek, and Daryl Whitlow

This weekend was like Black Friday for Star Wars fans. Force Friday II — the weekend where Hasbro, Sideshow, Hot Toys, and every other company unleashes their new products for the first time! New figures were found in 6-inch and 3.75-inch…plus some super-articulated figures that weren’t supposed to be out yet!

On this episode of Star Wars Action News the team comes together to report on Force Friday not just across the US but across the globe! Hear reports of store finds from California, Illinois, Florida, Nebraska, and even the UK! What were everyone’s favorite finds? Join the crew to find out!

Plus on this episode Marjorie and Arnie review some new Hasbro 3.75-inch items, including the new C-3PO, Hux, and First Order Stormtrooper figures, the Rey and Praetorian Guard 2-pack, and the new deluxe Rathtar and Imperial Probe Droid!

All this and more on the new Star Wars Action News podcast!
Source: Star Wars Action News

 

September 4, 2017 Posted by | Movies & Television, Podcasts, Star Wars Action News | | Comments Off on New Podcast – Star Wars Action News Episode 496: Force Friday II

New Podcast – Star Wars Action News Episode 495: Summer ’17 Cons: D23 & SDCC

Hosted by Marjorie Carvalho, Arnie Carvalho, Justin Kozisek, and Daryl Whitlow

Force Friday is a few short weeks away and (aside from a few leaks) Star Wars fans have little idea what to expect. But some news was had at the two big Star Wars events in July — D23 and SDCC!

On this new Star Wars Action News podcast Daryl joins Arnie and Marjorie to bring first-hand accounts from both conventions. Find out about the exclusives, the reveals, and more!
Source: Star Wars Action News

 

August 14, 2017 Posted by | Conventions, Movies & Television, Podcasts, Star Wars Action News | | Comments Off on New Podcast – Star Wars Action News Episode 495: Summer ’17 Cons: D23 & SDCC

Episode 494: Star Wars Turns 40

Forty years ago today blockbuster movies jumped to hyperspace. Science fiction was forever changed, as were the lives of millions of moviegoers. Over the four decades since Star Wars’ popularity has only grown, as have the collections of fans.

On this Star Wars Action News Marjorie and Arnie discuss the few 40th Anniversary exclusives released. And then they are joined by Justin, Brock, and Andrew to reminisce on some of their early Star Wars collecting memories.

Also on this week’s show, a wrap-up of Celebration Orlando, a review of the new Thrawn novel, and a look at HASCON — the official Hasbro con coming this September. All this and more on the new Star Wars Action News podcast!

Also, please check out Star Wars Action News’ crowdfunding campaign on Podbean! We want to make the show better and bring back the full video podcasts, but we need your help to make it happen!
Source: Star Wars Action News

May 24, 2017 Posted by | Movies & Television | | Comments Off on Episode 494: Star Wars Turns 40

Episode 493: Star Wars Celebration 2017 Prep Show

Star Wars Celebration is one week away and each day closer brings more announcements. Join Marjorie and Arnie on this podcast to run down the news. Exclusives from mainstays LEGO, Funko, Gentle Giant, Hallmark, ThinkGeek and Hasbro, plus oddballs like Nissan and WonderWorld Comics are discussed.

On this show you can also hear interviews with Celebration Art Show artists Brian Miller and Joe Corroney, discussing their exclusive artworks for the convention. And Frank Diorio is back on the show to talk about this year’s Celebration Diorama Project — the Death Star.

But what if you’re not going to Celebration? Star Wars Action News is here with reviews of things to watch and buy while at home, including Hasbro’s new Jedha Revolt action figure 4-pack, and a rundown of the Rogue One Blu-Ray exclusive releases.

Then you can follow Star Wars Action News on Facebook and Twitter for live updates and broadcasts from the convention! Whether you’re in Orlando or not, Star Wars Action News will bring the Celebration to you!

Online or at home, be sure to catch Star Wars Action News at the following Celebration Events!

Saturday 2pm ET: Meet and Greet/Patch Giveaway (W305)

Sunday: 12:30pm ET: Live Podcast on the Celebration Podcast Stage!

Also, please check out Star Wars Action News’ crowdfunding campaign on Podbean! We want to make the show better and bring back the full video podcasts, but we need your help to make it happen!
Source: Star Wars Action News

April 3, 2017 Posted by | Movies & Television | | Comments Off on Episode 493: Star Wars Celebration 2017 Prep Show

Episode 492: Celebration of Collectors

Star Wars Action News is back! And they’re preparing to Celebrate. In four weeks the largest Star Wars party in the world erupts in Orlando. Exclusives. Panels. Autographs. SWAG!

On this podcast Marjorie and Arnie run down the latest Celebration news. They also give their tips on how to make this convention the best time it can be! Whether you’re a con newbie or veteran there’s sure to be some tips here to make your Celebration even better.

Plus the Artist Alley prints have gone up for order. On this show Daryl interviews Brian DeGuire about his print “Desert Palace” and how he got his start as an official Star Wars Artist.

And on the show find out about the Star Wars Celebration Orlando Collecting Track! Marjorie & Arnie are again running the Collector’s Social Area in Room 305. Find out about some of the meet-ups there, including the always-packed Saturday Night Swap Meet. And new this year, Star Wars Re-Collections — a video diary of collectors sharing their favorite memories. All in Orlando next month!

All this, plus details on the Star Wars Action News pre-Celebration dinner, and a review of Star Wars: Aftermath – Empire’s End are in this jam-packed podcast!

Also, please check out Star Wars Action News’ crowdfunding campaign on Podbean! We want to make the show better and bring back the full video podcasts, but we need your help to make it happen!
Source: Star Wars Action News

March 16, 2017 Posted by | Movies & Television | | Comments Off on Episode 492: Celebration of Collectors

Episode 491: Death Star Light, Death Star Bright

It is the 40th Anniversary of Star Wars. Toy companies are sure to celebrate the occasion with loads of merchandise, much of which will be revealed next week at Toy Fair International.

While we wait for all that news, Marjorie & Arnie are back with a new episode of Star Wars Action News!

On this week’s show hear an in-depth review of Hasbro’s AT-ACT toy. This bluetooth enabled walker came with a high price tag but has been on deep discount since Christmas. Listen to find out how much this toy really should cost you!

Also on this show, Brock reviews the novelization of Star Wars: Rogue One. Listen to see if there are any of those cut plot threads revealed in its prose.

With a look forward to Toy Fair and a review of Uncle Milton’s USB powered Death Star Projector, it’s all in this week’s new Star Wars Action News!

Then follow Star Wars Action News on Facebook and Twitter for all the news live from Toy Fair in New York next weekend!



Also, please check out Star Wars Action News’ crowdfunding campaign on Podbean! We want to make the show better and bring back the full video podcasts, but we need your help to make it happen!
Source: Star Wars Action News

February 7, 2017 Posted by | Movies & Television | | Comments Off on Episode 491: Death Star Light, Death Star Bright

Episode 490: Star Wars Collecting 2016 Year in Review

In 2016 Star Wars collectors got 21 new Black Series 6-Inch figures, over a dozen Hot Toys figures, 3.75-inch figures, LEGO sets and more. To look back at the highlights (and lowlights) of the year Arnie and Marjorie are joined by Steve, Justin, Daryl, Andrew, and Action Figures Blues host Eddie. Relive the year that was with their two-hour retrospective!

Also on this show Brock and Nathan P Butler look at all the Star Wars books and comics that expanded the new canon.

The show ends with a look at what 2017 will bring–it is the 40th Anniversary of Star Wars! So jump to hyperspace while listening to this new Star Wars Action News podcast!

Also, please check out Star Wars Action News’ crowdfunding campaign on Podbean! We want to make the show better and bring back the full video podcasts, but we need your help to make it happen!
Source: Star Wars Action News

January 10, 2017 Posted by | Movies & Television | | Comments Off on Episode 490: Star Wars Collecting 2016 Year in Review

Episode 489: Rogue Group – A Rogue One Discussion

The very first Star Wars standalone movie has arrived. Without the Skywalkers and the Jedi, how does Rogue One stack up compared to the “saga” films?



On this show Arnie and Marjorie are joined by several members of the Star Wars Action News Team: Steve, Brock, Daryl, Andrew, and Jerry. Plus we have special guests Eddie from the Action Figure Blues podcast, and Chris and Sarah. They go through the new characters in the film, how it changes their view of the Original Trilogy, and which toys the film made them want to buy!



And also on this show Brock gives a spoiler-free, in-depth review of the Rogue One prequel novel Catalyst by James Luceno!



So join these Rogues on their mission to review the new film!



Then head to NowPlayingPodcast.com for Arnie, Stuart, and Jakob’s in-depth review of the movie!



Also, please check out Star Wars Action News’ crowdfunding campaign on Podbean! We want to make the show better and bring back the full video podcasts, but we need your help to make it happen!
Source: Star Wars Action News

December 20, 2016 Posted by | Movies & Television | | Comments Off on Episode 489: Rogue Group – A Rogue One Discussion

Episode 488: The Star Wars Holiday Sale & Gift Guide 2016

Happy Thanksgiving, Star Wars Action News listeners! And welcome to our 12th Annual Holiday Shopping Guide!In this issue Marjorie and Arnie run down all the major Black Friday toy sales. Find out where to get Black Series figures, video games, Star Wars themed glasses and gifts, and other toys with the biggest savings! Then follow us on Facebook and Twitter for the best online Black Friday and Cyber Monday deals!Then the hosts, aided by the entire Star Wars Action News team, run down the best Star Wars themed gifts for 2016. With prices from $5 to $800, there’s something for fans of all ages and interests! What are the must have collectibles this year? Join us to find out!All this and a 2016 Toys For Tots Challenge in this issue of Star Wars Action News!Also, please check out Star Wars Action News’ crowdfunding campaign on Podbean! We want to make the show better and bring back the full video podcasts, but we need your help to make it happen!
Source: Star Wars Action News

November 23, 2016 Posted by | Movies & Television | | Comments Off on Episode 488: The Star Wars Holiday Sale & Gift Guide 2016

Episode 487: Troops in Black

Stores are stocking up for holiday shoppers, and a good portion of their shelf space is devoted to Star Wars: Rogue One toys! While they have been out for a bit over a month some of the first wave of figures are still elusive.

On this episode of Star Wars Action News join Arnie, Marjorie, and Scott from Tulsa as they give in-depth reviews on the Black Series 6-Inch Rogue One figures. Plus a look at Amazon’s exclusive Shadow Trooper Helmet — all in this spooky Halloween episode!

Also, please check out Star Wars Action News’ crowdfunding campaign on Podbean! We want to make the show better and bring back the full video podcasts, but we need your help to make it happen!
Source: Star Wars Action News

October 30, 2016 Posted by | Movies & Television | | Comments Off on Episode 487: Troops in Black

Episode 486: New York Comic Con 2016!

In just a few years New York Comic Con has become one of the top three most important conventions for collectors. Each year the number of exhibitors grow, now including Sideshow and Hot Toys, Kotobukiya, Sphero, Air Hogs, Hallmark, Beast Kingdom and more! And Hasbro isn’t on the show floor, but they use the event to reveal new toys as well.



For all the Star Wars news out of NYCC join Arnie, Marjorie, and Daryl for this podcast. Watch exclusive interviews with Hasbro, Tantrum Cases, and Kotobukiya (along with their Celebration ’17 exclusives!). Plus a booth tour of Sideshow and Hot Toys, and news from so many other collectible lines!



Plus a review of the new Star Wars novel Ahsoka, it’s all in this feature-length episode of Star Wars Action News! (and available in both full video and audio versions!)



Also, please check out Star Wars Action News’ crowdfunding campaign on Podbean! We want to make the show better and bring back the full video podcasts, but we need your help to make it happen!
Source: Star Wars Action News

October 16, 2016 Posted by | Movies & Television | | Comments Off on Episode 486: New York Comic Con 2016!

Episode 485: Rogue Friday Around the World!

Last Friday the Rogue One toys were released! Well, officially any way…they had been showing up on store shelves worldwide for weeks before the official street date. But, like for The Force Awakens, these Rogue One toys were celebrated with a midnight release at Toys R Us and Walmart stores. Plus exclusive figures at Target, Walmart, K-Mart, Toys R Us, and more.

On this episode of Star Wars Action News, Arnie and Marjorie recount their Midnight Madness shopping, and are joined by collectors in California, England, and Australia to see how the experiences were in other areas as well!

Also, please check out Star Wars Action News’ crowdfunding campaign on Podbean! We want to make the show better and bring back the full video podcasts, but we need your help to make it happen!
Source: Star Wars Action News

October 2, 2016 Posted by | Movies & Television | | Comments Off on Episode 485: Rogue Friday Around the World!

Episode 484: Hasbro Star Wars Figures? There's an App for that.

Next week Star Wars will again descend upon stores across the world. Sep 30 is this year’s designated date for Rogue One toys, housewares, and more to be released. Some are hitting shelves now, but come Sep 30 everyone will have access to figures of Jyn Erso, the Deathtrooper, and more!

On this episode of Star Wars Action News the team gathers to discuss their anticipation for the toys, the new movie, and so much more. LEGO, Hot Toys, Disney Elite figures, and, of course, Hasbro Toys!



Build your anticipation for this toy release with this episode of Star Wars Action News!



Also, please check out Star Wars Action News’ crowdfunding campaign on Podbean! We want to make the show better and bring back the full video podcasts, but we need your help to make it happen!
Source: Star Wars Action News

September 18, 2016 Posted by | Movies & Television | | Comments Off on Episode 484: Hasbro Star Wars Figures? There's an App for that.

Episode 483: ICE — Collecting to the Extreme!

Over Labor Day weekend a group of Star Wars collectors from across the globe gathered in the Washington DC area for an International Collector’s Event–or ICE. Items were sold and traded, collections were put on display, and friends swapped stories. All while traveling through Virginia and Maryland visiting a dozen Star Wars collections!

Marjorie and Arnie were on-hand to see these impressive displays and talk to some of the other attendees. So kick back and enjoy this extra-cool episode of Star Wars Action News!



Also, please check out Star Wars Action News’ crowdfunding campaign on Podbean! We want to make the show better and bring back the full video podcasts, but we need your help to make it happen!
Source: Star Wars Action News

September 7, 2016 Posted by | Movies & Television | | Comments Off on Episode 483: ICE — Collecting to the Extreme!

Episode 482: SDCC Exclusives — Thumbs Up!

San Diego Comic-Con has come and gone, but the desire for exclusives lives on! Yesterday Hasbro Toy Shop put up for order their three Star Wars Black Series 6-Inch 2016 exclusives: Jyn Erso, Unmasked Kylo Ren, and A New Hope Obi-Wan Kenobi with talking holographic Leia! They were all gone in under an hour.

Are these figures worth the trouble it took to get them? Or the eBay prices? Join Arnie and Marjorie on this week’s show for in-depth reviews of all three Hasbro SDCC 2016 exclusives!

With a bonus review of Funko’s SDCC exclusive BB-8 with “Thumbs Up” lighter, and a look at the new Star Wars novel Aftermath: Life Debt, all this and much more is in this week’s new podcast!

Also, please check out Star Wars Action News’ crowdfunding campaign on Podbean! We want to make the show better and bring back the full video podcasts, but we need your help to make it happen!
Source: Star Wars Action News

August 7, 2016 Posted by | Movies & Television | | Comments Off on Episode 482: SDCC Exclusives — Thumbs Up!

Episode 481: Star Wars Collectibles at San Diego Comic-Con 2016

San Diego Comic-Con was last weekend, and Star Wars was everywhere! From announcements on books and comics to toys and collectibles, the Star Wars Action News team was there to bring you the highlights!

On this full video episode, Arnie and Marjorie are joined by Marvelicious Toys’ host Justin to talk about all the exclusives, the Hasbro reveals, and more.

Watch this episode for exclusive interviews with eFX Collectibles, Kotobukiya, Gentle Giant and Hasbro! Plus a tour of the floor and look at items by Beast Kingdom, Funko, and more!

And check out our photo galleries to see hundreds of pictures from the convention!

Also, please check out Star Wars Action News’ crowdfunding campaign on Podbean! We want to make the show better and bring back the full video podcasts, but we need your help to make it happen!
Source: Star Wars Action News

July 25, 2016 Posted by | Movies & Television | | Comments Off on Episode 481: Star Wars Collectibles at San Diego Comic-Con 2016

Episode 480: Celebrating Star Wars in Eurorpe, 2016!

Source: Star Wars Action News

July 19, 2016 Posted by | Movies & Television | | Comments Off on Episode 480: Celebrating Star Wars in Eurorpe, 2016!

Episode 479: We Collect Eternal…Shiny and Chrome!

Star Wars fans around the world — rejoice! In the next 2 weeks comes Star Wars Celebration Europe and San Diego Comic-Con! The news will be coming quickly about new toys and collectibles, as well as information on Episode VIII, Rogue One, and Rebels! And the Star Wars Action News team is going to be at both conventions covering it all.

Join the hosts this episode for the ultimate SDCC shopping guide. From exclusive Hasbro Black Series figures to Chewbacca watches to car decals–Arnie and Marjorie run down and rate the numerous Star Wars collectibles only available at the show!

And Steve “The Gingerprince” joins in to share his excitement for this weekend’s Celebration Europe 3! With an exclusive Black Series Kylo Ren figure, a bevy of Original Trilogy stars signing autographs, and more, Steve preps you for the event.

With a review of the Kotobukiya Art-FX+ Captain Phasma and a Vintage Viewpoint reviewing Topps’ new Empire Strieks Back trading card book, it’s all in this extended Star Wars Action News podcast!

And also check out Star Wars Action News’ crowdfunding campaign on Podbean! We want to make the show better and bring back the full video podcasts, but we need your help to make it happen!
Source: Star Wars Action News

July 11, 2016 Posted by | Movies & Television | | Comments Off on Episode 479: We Collect Eternal…Shiny and Chrome!

Episode 478: House of Cards

Highly detailed, highly articulated Star Wars 3.75-inch figures are the mainstay of many fans’ collections. The news that The Force Awakens would only see a handful of these Black Series figures, and that they would be Walmart exclusives, made fans worry if these new toys would be obtainable. The third wave, with versions of Han Solo, General Leia, and Captain Phasma from The Force Awakens, has been elusive and fetched north of $40 per figure on eBay. But now, finally, the dam has broken and these figures are showing up coast to coast–including in the Star Wars Action News studio! On this week’s show hear a review of these latest figures and see if they’re worth more toy runs!

Yet while the Black Series 3.75-inch figures have been elusive, the main line of figures, with five points of articulation, are available at every store. Fans were divided on these detailed, but hard-to-pose figures. Now, enter Kozy–a figure customizer who has created cardbacks that elevate these figures from average to epic! He joins the Star Wars Action News hosts to talk about these cards and his inspiration for making them.

With a look at upcoming exclusives for San Diego Comic-Con International and Celebration Europe, new online sales, and much more, it’s all in this Wampa-sized episode of Star Wars Action News!



And also check out Star Wars Action News’ crowdfunding campaign on Podbean! We want to make the show better and bring back the full video podcasts, but we need your help to make it happen!
Source: Star Wars Action News

June 27, 2016 Posted by | Movies & Television | | Comments Off on Episode 478: House of Cards

Episode 477: To the Maz

She’s the most intriguing new alien introduced in Star Wars: The Force Awakens. She somehow has the lightsaber Luke lost on Bespin. She knows of the Force. She has a crush on the galaxy’s favorite Wookiee. She’s Maz Kanata — and if you want her in action figure form you have to buy the Takodana Encounter figure 4-pack. On this episode of Star Wars Action News, hear a review of that set to see if it’s worth hunting for!

Also on this show, last week ticket sales began for the eighth Star Wars Celebration in the United States, this time back in Orlando! Listen as Arnie and Marjorie are joined by Jake Stevens from From 4-Lom to Zuckuss as they look ahead to next year’s biggest Star Wars party.

With two new premium format figures from Sideshow, a real-life Star Wars hologram, and more information about this year’s Star Wars Celebration in London, it’s all in this brand new Star Wars Action News!



And also check out Star Wars Action News’ crowdfunding campaign on Podbean! We want to make the show better and bring back the full video podcasts, but we need your help to make it happen!
Source: Star Wars Action News

May 30, 2016 Posted by | Movies & Television | | Comments Off on Episode 477: To the Maz

Episode 476: You Don't Know the Moistness of the Dark Side

May the 4th has come and gone, but for many the credit card hangover still remains. There were new releases from Disney, Sideshow, Gentle Giant, Hot Toys, plus sales at LEGO and more! Biggest of all, the next Star Wars Celebration convention was confirmed! On this week’s podcast Marjorie and Arnie are joined by Ryan and Amy from Star Wars Collecting Cosmos. The four look back on the highs, lows, and purchases of May the 4th, 2016!



Also on this week’s show, Brock reviews the new Star Wars novel BLOODLINE. Taking place between Episode VI and VII, this book had direct input from Lucasfilm to help shape the universe for Episode VIII. Join Brock to find out if this is a must read for you.



With a review of the S.H. Figuarts Captain Phasma, a Darth Vader Humidifier, and a run-down of the perks of being a Jedi Knight or Master, it’s all in this week’s new podcast!



And also check out Star Wars Action News’ crowdfunding campaign on Podbean! We want to make the show better and bring back the full video podcasts, but we need your help to make it happen!
Source: Star Wars Action News

May 16, 2016 Posted by | Movies & Television | | Comments Off on Episode 476: You Don't Know the Moistness of the Dark Side

Episode 475: May the 4th Comes Earlier Every Year

New Black Series figures are hitting shelves — but are they the last new 6-inch Star Wars toys we’ll see until fall? On this week’s Star Wars Action News, Marjorie and Arnie are joined by Marvelicious Toys podcast host Justin as they discuss the immediate future of the line. They also review the two new waves showing up in stores now, with new figures including Jango Fett, FN-2187, The Force Awakens style Han Solo, and A New Hope version of Tattooine Luke Skywalker!



Also on this week’s show, the hosts went to Indiana Comic-Con with special guests Ray Park and Ian McDiarmid. Join them, and their guest Daryl, as they discuss the convention–and the collectibles found there!



With a run-down of all the May the 4th day Star Wars specials known so far and more, it’s all in this oversized episode of Star Wars Action News!





And also check out Star Wars Action News’ crowdfunding campaign on Podbean! We want to make the show better and bring back the full video podcasts, but we need your help to make it happen!
Source: Star Wars Action News

May 2, 2016 Posted by | Movies & Television | | Comments Off on Episode 475: May the 4th Comes Earlier Every Year

Episode 474: We're Down To buy Figuarts

Star Wars action figure collectors have a wealth of options. Whereas once we had only Kenner/Hasbro action figures, these days there are options in every scale and price point. One of those new figure lines is Bandai’s S.H. Figuarts 6-inch line. The price is double that of a Hasbro 6-inch figure, but is it worth it? On this episode of Star Wars Action News Marjorie and Arnie give an in-depth review of the S.H. Figuarts First Order Stormtrooper, and tell you if it’s worth the price they paid!

And also on this week’s show, the hosts review Kotobukiya’s Art-FX+ First Order Stormtrooper statue 2-pack. Listen in to find out why this may be a statue collection you want to troop build!

With a complete run down of all US Blu-ray releases of The Force Awakens, news of an upcoming prototype Elite Series figure, and the latest rumors for 2016’s Force Friday event, it’s all on this Star Wars Action News!

And also check out Star Wars Action News’ crowdfunding campaign on Podbean! We want to make the show better and bring back the full video podcasts, but we need your help to make it happen!
Source: Star Wars Action News

April 18, 2016 Posted by | Movies & Television | | Comments Off on Episode 474: We're Down To buy Figuarts

Episode 473: Blu Rey

Tomorrow The Force Awakens arrives on Blu-Ray — the first new
live-action Star Wars home release in 11 years. There are a handful of
exclusive versions and many tie-in sales. Prep for your Tuesday shopping
by joining Arnie and Marjorie to find out which version is right for
you!



Plus tomorrow also marks the rerelease of the Disney Store
exclusive Elite figures — including a new Boba Fett! Find out how you
can score these figures that have commanded top dollar on eBay.



With
a report from Wizard World Chicago, a review of the latest Funko
Smuggler’s Bounty box, and more, it’s all in this new episode of Star
Wars Action News!



And also check out Star Wars Action News’ crowdfunding campaign on Podbean! We want to make the show better, and need your help to make it happen!
Source: Star Wars Action News

April 4, 2016 Posted by | Movies & Television | | Comments Off on Episode 473: Blu Rey

Episode 472: Having a Blaster at C2E2 2016

This past weekend was C2E2 in Chicago. Marjorie, Arnie, and Daryl were there checking out the panels and all the booths at the con. Join them on this episode as they report on their hunts for items like Bandai Movie Realization figures, S.H. Figuarts Stormtroopers, Hasbro Black Series, and more! Plus they highlight some special Artist’s Alley finds.

Also on this episode, Jerry is back with another Vintage Viewpoint. He looks at the classic Stormtrooper Blaster toy, and reveals its surprising Batman tie!

Finally Andrew is back with two new Hot Toys — A New Hope Luke and Stormtrooper Luke Skywalker. Does he like these Lukes? Join him to find out in this new Star Wars Action News!

And also check out Star Wars Action News’ crowdfunding campaign on Podbean! We want to make the show better, and need your help to make it happen!
Source: Star Wars Action News

March 21, 2016 Posted by | Movies & Television | | Comments Off on Episode 472: Having a Blaster at C2E2 2016

Episode 471: Hot Toys — Assemble the Troops!

While most of us spent Force Friday, 2015 standing outside our local toy stores, Hot Toys collectors were making tough choices. Up for pre-order that day were the first wave of figures for The Force Awakens — and there were lots of them! More pre-orders followed, and now Hot Toys fans are rewarded by a legion of figures showing up on their doorsteps. In this episode Andrew assembles his ranks of Hot Toys First Order Stormtroopers. How different are they, and were they worth the price? Join him to find out!



Also on this week’s show, Marjorie and Arnie review Wave 3 of the Star Wars Black Series 6-inch figures, with a First Order TIE Fighter Pilot and a Resistance Trooper. Plus they also run down all the news regarding The Force Awakens Blu-Ray releases!



All this and a report from Wizard World Cleveland in this latest episode of Star Wars Action News!



And also check out Star Wars Action News’ crowdfunding campaign on Podbean! We want to make the show better, and need your help to make it happen!
Source: Star Wars Action News

March 7, 2016 Posted by | Movies & Television | | Comments Off on Episode 471: Hot Toys — Assemble the Troops!

Episode 470: Toy Fair 2016 Pt 2 – Kotobukiya, Funko and More from Javitz

Toy Fair International is over, and Star Wars Action News is here to wrap-up all the news collectors care about!

In this episode Marjorie and Arnie recap their Javitz booth visits. They spoke with Dan from Kotobukiya about their upcoming Art-FX+ statues and housewares goods. Funko reveals new POPs, and hints at upcoming Hikari Sofubi characters. Revell shows off new models and teases their Rogue One offerings. Plus several others!

And also this show you can hear Hasbro’s Star Wars Brand Presentation. Our previous episode ran down the reveals, but now you can hear the full presentation straight from Hasbro’s team!

And also check out Star Wars Action News’ crowdfunding campaign on Podbean! We want to make the show better, and need your help to make it happen!
Source: Star Wars Action News

February 19, 2016 Posted by | Movies & Television | | Comments Off on Episode 470: Toy Fair 2016 Pt 2 – Kotobukiya, Funko and More from Javitz

Episode 469: Toy Fair 2016 Pt 1 – LEGO, Hasbro, Jakks Pacific, and more!

Marjorie and Arnie are in New York City to bring you the latest news from Toy Fair International 2016! And if that’s not enough — they’re also giving away a Sideshow Collectibles 12-inch Boba Fett figure!

In this first part of their coverage, join them as they discuss all the latest reveals from Hasbro’s Toy Fair presentation. Hasbro displayed two new Sabine figures from Rebels, A New Hope Luke and Leia in the 6-inch Series, and more 6-inch Black Series figures. Plus they revealed news about their upcoming summer convention exclusives, for both Celebration Europe and San Diego Comic-Con! Join in to catch up on the news!

Also in this first episode the hosts run down all the new sets revealed by LEGO, and they are Hoth! Hoth! Hoth! Arnie saw the new Ultimate Collector Set Hoth diorama first hand. Listen in to find out if it’s the best new set on display, or if the new X-Wing, Carbon Freezing Chamber, or other sets stole the show!

With a thumbs-up BB-8 from Jakks Pacific and more, it’s all in this first Toy Fair 2016 episode of Star Wars Action News!

And also check out Star Wars Action News’ crowdfunding campaign on Podbean! We want to make the show better, and need your help to make it happen!
Source: Star Wars Action News

February 13, 2016 Posted by | Movies & Television | | Comments Off on Episode 469: Toy Fair 2016 Pt 1 – LEGO, Hasbro, Jakks Pacific, and more!

Episode 468: Turning Japanese

Toy Fair International is just 5 days away! This weekend Hasbro, LEGO, Kotobukiya, and so many more companies will reveal their 2016 Star Wars line-up. But will there be much to show? On this week’s Star Wars Action News, Marjorie and Arnie prepare for the coverage and tell you what has already leaked out!

And one of the big reveals at Toy Fair last year was the Tamshii Nations Movie Realization Star Wars line featuring Darth Vader and Stormtroopers as Japanese samurai. On this show we review the newest release in that line — the Ronin Boba Fett!



With a look at new ceramic Star Wars dinnerware, a new Hot Toys figure aimed right at gamers, and much more, it’s all in this new Star Wars Action News!
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February 7, 2016 Posted by | Movies & Television | | Comments Off on Episode 468: Turning Japanese

Episode 467: In Space…No One Can Hear You Troop

Star Wars Action News is back with its first regular show of 2016, and it’s a Hot one! Marjorie and Arnie are joined by Hot Toys addict Andrew to review two of that company’s Movie Masterpiece Series Star Wars figures. First, the three look at the Star Wars Celebration Anaheim exclusive Spacetrooper figure. It’s still available on their site — should you order it?

Then Andrew talks about his biggest Hot Toys purchase, the quarter scale Boba Fett. This 18-inch Mandalorian carries a hefty bounty. Listen to find out if he’s worth a lot to Andrew!

With Brock reviewing Alan Dean Foster’s The Force Awakens novelization, a run-down on new figures hitting stores, and a cuddly Valentine’s Day bouquet, it’s all in this brand new episode of Star Wars Action News!
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January 24, 2016 Posted by | Movies & Television | | Comments Off on Episode 467: In Space…No One Can Hear You Troop

Episode 466: 2015 Star Wars Collectors' Year in Review

For Star Wars collectors 2015 started in a famine and ended in a feast — with plenty of highs and lows along the way! We look back at the Star Wars Celebration: Anaheim reveals, the convention exclusives, and all the action figures, mini-busts, import figures, and high-end collectibles. Plus the bottled water, the oranges, the cereals, and all the other tie-ins!

So listen now as Arnie and Marjorie are joined by other Star Wars Action News team members and friends and look back on the year that was…and the next year to come!

Then come to our forums to talk about The Force Awakens. We have threads for both the spoiler-filled and spoiler-free conversations!
Source: Star Wars Action News

January 10, 2016 Posted by | Movies & Television | | Comments Off on Episode 466: 2015 Star Wars Collectors' Year in Review

Episode 465: The Fans Awaken

SPOILER WARNING: This podcast has an in-depth discussion of Star Wars: The Force Awakens. The toys, the movie, the books, are all fair game.

Nothing shakes up Star Wars collecting more than a new property. Every movie and TV series brings new figure lines, vehicles, and more. In the case of The Force Awakens we even got water and produce!

Fans have been collecting Force Awakens figures on blind faith ever since Force Friday in early September. For over three months we’ve speculated — why doesn’t the Finn figure come with a lightsaber? Who is Constable Zuvvio?

But now the film has awoken fans across the globe!

And on this episode of Star Wars Action News, the first part of our 2015 year-in-review coverage, Marjorie and Arnie are joined by many friends to discuss the new film Join them to find out how the movie impacted them…and their collections!

Then come to our forums to talk about The Force Awakens. We have threads for both the spoiler-filled and spoiler-free conversations!
Source: Star Wars Action News

December 21, 2015 Posted by | Movies & Television | | Comments Off on Episode 465: The Fans Awaken

Episode 464: Rey Bans

SPOILER WARNING: There is a Force Awakens character bit revealed in this show. It has been revealed elsewhere (including the official Star Wars Twitter account) but for those who want to know nothing about The Force Awakens, one piece is revealed in this show.

There’s been an awakening…have you felt it? As The Force Awakens hits theaters, Star Wars Action News reporter Justin awakened the Disney empire with his Walmart store find — a new 3.75-inch Rey figure!

It was the figure find heard across the world! Some claimed the figure was a spoiler, others started their own hunts, and Disney and Lucasfilm started sending takedown notices. What’s all the hullabaloo about? And was the figure worth the trouble it caused? Justin joins Arnie and Marjorie on this show to tell the tale!

Also on this week’s show, Arnie, Marjorie, and Justin report on the latest store finds and online exclusives. With figure multi-pack exclusives at Toys R Us and Kohls, and a Disney exclusive Boba Fett that’s commanding a huge bounty, join the hosts for all the news.

With an in depth look at the new Star Wars Topps Trading Cards book and more, The Force Awakens on Star Wars Action News!

We want your pictures! Share your Force Awakens theater photos on the Star Wars Action News Facebook page!

Then come to our forums to talk about The Force Awakens. We have threads for both the spoiler-filled and spoiler-free conversations!
Source: Star Wars Action News

December 14, 2015 Posted by | Movies & Television | | Comments Off on Episode 464: Rey Bans

Episode 463: 2015 Holiday Gift & Black Friday Guide

Happy Thanksgiving to all the Star Wars Action News community!

While your uncle gets drunk and your sister yells about football we give you our 11th annual Holiday Gift Guide. What do you get for the Star Wars collector who has everything? Or what should those in your life buy for you? Marjorie and Arnie, along with guest host Andrew, have dozens of gift ideas here in this show. From stocking stuffers to action figures to life sized statues, the whole range is in this guide!

Plus the Black Friday sales are about to start. As early as 6 a.m. on Thanksgiving morning stores are starting their deep discounts for the holiday season. Are there any Star Wars sales worth braving the crowds? Listen to find out!

And be sure you get, and give, a Star Wars themed gift this year! Our annual Sithmas gift exhange registration is open. Sign up before Dec 2 to join in this fun Secret Santa type fun. Find out all the details and sign up now.
Source: Star Wars Action News

November 24, 2015 Posted by | Movies & Television | | Comments Off on Episode 463: 2015 Holiday Gift & Black Friday Guide