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Make a Date With Mortal Kombat: Legacy II; New Trailer

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Make a Date With Mortal Kombat: Legacy IILoved the web series Mortal Kombat: Legacy but hated waiting to see what happened from week to week? Well, get out your bibs, kids, as for Part II the entire enchilada is hitting at once for your binge-viewing pleasure.

From The Press Release
All of the second season of “Mortal Kombat: Legacy II” will debut worldwide at once September 26, 2013, exclusively on Machinima, the number one video entertainment network for young males around the world. “Mortal Kombat: Legacy II,” produced by Warner Bros. Digital Distribution, is the hit live action web series based on the legendary Mortal Kombat video game franchise, co-created by Ed Boon, developed by NetherRealm Studios and published by Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment. “Mortal Kombat: Legacy II” is directed by Kevin Tancharoen (“Mortal Kombat: Legacy”) and co-written by Josh Baizer and Marshall Johnson (“Dead Loss”).

The first season of “Mortal Kombat: Legacy” was one of 2011’s most-viewed web series and has generated more than 70 million views to date on Machinima. In the highly anticipated second season, the saga continues as Liu Kang and Ermac join the ranks of fighters introduced in the series’ first season, including Kenshi, Kung Lao, Kuai Lang, Stryker, Kitana, Mileena, Johnny Cage, Scorpion and Sub-Zero. This new season uncovers the rivalries and histories of these fierce warriors as Raiden and his recruits clash against the dark forces of Outworld. Chronicling the tournament and the interweaving storylines of the most beloved Kombatants, fans also will learn of the complex relationship between Liu Kang and Kung Lao and revisit the complicated family dynamic of Kitana and Mileena. The epic battle for EarthRealm has finally begun!

“Machinima has a passionate and engaged global audience. Our audience isn’t shy. They tell us what content they want and how they want to watch and interact with it,” said Chairman, Co-Founder, and CEO of Machinima Allen DeBevoise. “This is why we decided to deliver all of ‘Mortal Kombat: Legacy II’ at once. There is no need to wait to see what happens next; they can enjoy everything back to back. With companies like Amazon, Hulu, Netflix, and HBO GO as destinations where consumers can watch multiple episodes consecutively, binge-viewing is a major movement in online video. We’re a part of this movement, and we expect this to make for an amazing and extremely engaging user experience.”

“There has been so much anticipation around ‘Mortal Kombat: Legacy II,’” said director and co-writer Kevin Tancharoen. “I’m excited to deliver this season to fans. There’s more action, fights, special effects, and overall more of what fans want.”

“‘Mortal Kombat: Legacy II’ follows the record-breaking first season of the series and treats fans to an even higher caliber of online filmmaking,” said Lance Sloane, Producer, Warner Bros.

“Mortal Kombat Komplete Edition” was recently released on Steam and is also available for purchase on major gaming consoles. The latest chapter of Mortal Kombat was released in 2011 by Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment, marking a triumphant return to the series’ roots. Selling nearly five million units worldwide, the reinvention of the franchise became the highest-selling fighting game of the year and won numerous “Best Fighting Game” awards, including Spike TV’s 2011 Video Game Awards, 2012 Academy of Interactive Arts & Sciences Interactive Achievement Awards, and recognition from Game Informer, Official Xbox Magazine and GameTrailers.com.

Tancharoen (“Mortal Kombat: Legacy”) returns as director and co-writer of “Mortal Kombat: Legacy II” alongside writers Josh Baizer and Marshall Johnson (“Dead Loss”). The cast includes Harry Shum, Jr. (“Glee”) as the warlord adviser “Kuai Liang,” Casper Van Dien (“Starship Troopers”) as martial arts film actor “Johnny Cage,” Brian Tee (“The Wolverine”) as Shaolin Monk “Liu Kang,” and Mark Dacascos (“Cradle 2 the Grave “) as “Kung Lao” – a close friend of “Liu Kang.” Additionally, Ian Anthony Dale (“Hawaii Five-O”) returns as the resurrected ninja “Scorpion,” and Cary Tagawa reprises the role he made famous in the “Mortal Kombat” theatrical release as the powerful, arrogant sorcerer “Shang Tsung.” “Mortal Kombat: Legacy II” is produced by Lance Sloane (“Act of Valor”) and Tancharoen.

Mortal Kombat: II

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The Open House Review – Abandon Hope All Ye Who Enter Here

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Starring Dylan Minnette, Piercey Dalton, Patricia Bethune, Sharif Atkins

Written by Matt Angel and Suzanne Coote

Directed by Matt Angel and Suzanne Coote


Mere weeks, even days, after effusively beating Netflix’s original horror content drum (The Babysitter, Before I Wake, Creep 2), I’m here to confirm that The Open House is emptier than an vacant bomb shelter. Cold, unappealing and thoughtlessly plotted to the point where “generic” would have been an improvement. From the moment we’re welcomed into Matt Angel and Suzanne Coote’s scripted imprisonment, it’s nothing but loose floorboards and busted plumbing. The home invasion genre has rarely been navigated with such little attention to detail, asking for our suspension of coherent storytelling early, often, and without earning the right to be deemed mindless genre fun. Not even Ty Pennington could save this extreme renovation disaster.

Dylan Minnette plays Logan Wallace, a track star and student who must find closure after watching his father fall victim to a fatal car accident. It is his mother Naomi’s (Piercey Dalton) idea to spend a little time away from their suburban home – escape those painful memories – so they retreat to her sister’s luxurious mountain getaway. The catch? It’s in the process of being sold and open houses are on the regular, so Naomi and Logan must vacate their temporary premises on certain days. It’s after one of these very showings that Logan begins to notice slight changes around the house, and he fears that an unwanted visitor may be in their midst. Guess what? He’s right.

To understand how little The Open House cares about conscious blueprinting, just read the poster’s tagline. “You can’t lock out what’s already inside” – right, but you could have prevented them from coming in, or checked the house to make sure they weren’t squatting, or explored numerous other possibilities to avoid this scenario. The mansion’s realtor allows prospective buyers to come and go but it’s not her job to make sure no one’s hiding in the basement? Naomi can’t even keep track of the *single* visitor she lets look around the house? It’s infuriating to see so many people neglect safety out of forced coincidence because the script couldn’t rationalize the killer’s entry any other way – a confounding strike one.

This is also a film that admits no reasoning for why its own murderer has targeted the Wallaces, or why he stokes a violent fetish when it comes to open houses. We never actually see his face, just his imposing handyman-looking attire, nor do we savor any kind of tangible backstory (his family died during their own open house and he suffered a psychotic breakdown – just give me *something*). His undefined form never demands curiosity like John Carpenter’s “The Shape” once did, because scripting is nothing more than bullet notes for basic horror movie necessities. Here he is, your bad guy – too bad he’s introduced without fear, handled without originality and unable to characterize beyond torturous kidnapper dotted lines. He’s just, you know, a guy who sneaks into open houses and kills – COMPLETE WITH A FINAL PAN-IN ON AN OPEN HOUSE SIGN WHEN HE MOVES TO HIS NEXT TARGET [eye roll into infinity].

Every scene in The Open House feels like an afterthought. “Ah, we need a way to build tension – how about a senile local woman who lives down the street and wanders aimlessly into frame?” Overplayed and in no way suitable to most her inclusions, but sure. “Oh, and we need inner conflict – what about if the breaker-iner steals Logan’s phone and frames him for later acts?” I mean, didn’t Logan canonically lose his phone even before Naomi’s mid-shower water heater issues – but sure, instant fake tension. “How are people going to believe the killer is always around and never blows his cover – think they’ll just buy it?” No, we don’t. Worse off, his cat-and-mouse game is dully repetitive until a finale that skyrockets intensity with jarring tonal imbalance. This closing, dreadful end without any sort of redemptive quality. More abusive than it is fulfilling.

If there’s anything positive worth conveying, it’s that Minnette does a fine job shuffling around as a character with severe sight impairment. The killer makes a point to remove his contacts as a final “FUCK YOU,” just to toy around a bit more, and Minnette frantically slips or stumbles with nothing more than foggy vision. Otherwise, dialogue finds itself ripped form a billion other straight-to-TV Logo dramas about broken families, no moment ever utilizing horror past a few shadowy forms standing in doorways after oblivious characters turn away. You can’t just take an overused subgenre and sleepwalk through homogenized beats…case and god-forsaken point.

Even as a streamable Netflix watch, The Open House is irredeemable beyond fault. The walls are caving in on this dilapidated excuse for home invasion horror, benefiting not from the star power of a temperamental Dylan Minnette. I have seen most involved players here in far better projects (Minnette’s stock has rightfully been skyrocketing, Matt Angel in The Funhouse Massacre, etc), but this is bargain bin theatrics without a fully formed idea. A nameless villain, doomed nice guy (Sharif Atkins), woefully unaware plot advancement – all the worst cliches found in one rage-quit worthy effort. Anyone who makes it through deserves an award…or a dunce cap.

  • The Open House
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Summary

Unless you’re irrationally afraid of cold showers, The Open House fails to deliver on a premise that can be summed up by no more than two lines of text.

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Michael C. Hall Buried in Stephen King’s Pet Sematary

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Now here’s an audio book we can REALLY get behind! Entertainment Weekly is reporting that former “Dexter” star Michael C. Hall will be narrating the first ever unabridged recording of Stephen King’s Pet Sematary. Sometime’s audio is better!

Readers have been asking for this audiobook for a very long time,” Stephen King said in a statement. “I know the listening experience will be worth the wait with Michael as narrator.

We’re thrilled to finally bring Pet Sematary to King’s audiobook fans,” Simon & Schuster Audio president and publisher Chris Lynch added. “Michael C. Hall is a perfect match for this timeless story, which has long deserved an unabridged production.

The unabridged audiobook of Pet Sematary will be released by Simon & Schuster Audio on March 27. Speaking of Hall… you know he would make a pretty friggin’ good casting choice to play Victor Pascow in the upcoming Pet Sematary remake. Just sayin’.

BUY IT NOW!

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Saw-inspired Game Play With Me Sets a Trap on Steam

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Saw fans have a lot to be happy about right now. In addition to Jigsaw being teased for Dead by Daylight, a new Saw-themed game called Play With Me has launched on Steam, and although it’s not officially connected with the franchise in any way, developer Airem promised that they created a videogame which looks and plays as though it were made by Jigsaw himself. As you can tell from the trailer and screenshots, the production values and overall quality of Play With Me appear to be considerably higher than most other indie horror games released on Steam, and you’ll probably be very happy to see that Airem took the time and effort to create stylized hand drawn environments rather than using purchased assets from the Unity Store.

The killer behind the sinister traps in Play With Me is known as the Illusion, with the player taking control of investigative journalist Robert Hawk as he tries to fight his way through a series of sick and twisted obstacles created by the lunatic. The voice acting in the trailer was a little cheesy, although we see at 1:09 that the player will be tasked with using a kitchen knife to cut open a dead body (presumably to retrieve an item hidden in the cadaver’s stomach), which is not an image you’ll be forgetting anytime soon.

IQ Publishing are offering a 15% discount off Play With Me for those who purchase the game before January 24, so Saw fans might want to mark that deadline in their calendars and purchase it from Steam before the time is up. After all, it can’t be worse than Konami’s awful official Saw videogames.

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