Happy Holidays from VOH

The holidays are finally upon us!  VOH wishes you and yours a joyful holiday season, filled with happiness, good health and of course, fabulous moviegoing experiences.

As we reflect upon the joys of the season, we’d like to share our favorite holiday treats with you.

Late Night goes rogue with the modern classic, Children of Men, while Mr. Ridley stays traditional and reminisces about the British children’s animated short, The Snowman.
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Trailer Tracking: Star Trek Into Darkness

JJ Abrams
JJ Abrams

Fans of JJ Abrams’ 2009 reboot of the classic Star Trek universe were excited to finally see the first trailer for Abrams’ sequel, Star Trek Into Darkness.

For his first Trek film, Abrams carefully balanced the need to respect the Star Trek canon, while establishing the world of Kirk, Spock and Bones for a new generation of audiences.

But will Abrams have the vision to forge new ground with his Trek films?

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Trailer Tracking: Man of Steel

Director Zack Snyder

Director Zack Snyder

This week, the first trailer for one of DC Comics most iconic characters was released.

Man of Steel, which hopes to re-establish the Superman story on film, does not open until next June. However, the buzz following so much debate about the character’s new direction, as well as the ongoing legal wrangling between Warner Bros. and Jerry Siegel’s family, has been underway for some time.

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Ridley Scott’s Prometheus

Ridley Scott

This past summer, Scott returned to the Alien universe that he so skillfully established with the highly anticipated film, Prometheus.  Or did he?

For months leading up to Prometheus’ release, Scott played coyly with fans, hinting that “Once you start into the evolution of the story, it moves so far away from Alien that there’s only the mere DNA of the original in Prometheus.”


In addition to Scott’s tantalizing comments, Prometheus’ promotional campaign included viral videos, trailers to announce trailers, as well as the return of familiar creative forces, such as renowned Swiss surrealist, HR Giger (his grotesque, yet beautiful, design work is at the core of the Alien look). All of this fanned the flames of anticipation.

So is Prometheus the creator’s return to one of his most beloved creations?

It turns out that Scott wants to have his cake and eat it too – a decision that serves to effectively inhibit Prometheus from ultimately delivering on its glorious promise. Read More

Prometheus… A Return to Form for Sir Ridley?

Ridley Scott

A king has his reign, and then he dies – it’s inevitable. ~ Prometheus

After months of teasing and taunting, Ridley Scott’s latest film, Prometheus, lands in theaters this week.  The legendary filmmaker has been directing features for over 30 years, but his recent output has been less than stellar. 

Is Prometheus a return to form for Sir Ridley?

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David Cronenberg: The Return of the King (of Venereal Horror)?

David Cronenberg

He’s been called the “King of Venereal Horror” and the “Baron of Blood.”  And while his films have not always been understood upon their initial theatrical release, he has stayed his course, building an oeuvre of artistic integrity and visionary endeavors, until audiences finally realized the error of their ways.

Due to his marked departure from the explicit horror genre in more recent fare, some purists believe that Cronenberg has wandered off the ranch and betrayed his earlier successes in the horror genre.

Next month at the 2012 Cannes Film Festival, all eyes will be watching for critical reaction to Cronenberg’s latest – his adaption of Don DeLillo’s 2003 novel Cosmopolis.  Is this a return to horror for Cronenberg or an intriguing new direction in his ever-expanding artistic capacity?


No matter – regardless of the reception for Cosmopolis, Cronenberg is a true visionary.

This is part one of a four-part series on the oeuvre of visionary filmmaker David Cronenberg.

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Stephen Daldry’s Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close… Manipulation or Emotion?

Stephen Daldry

Stephen Daldry’s film adaption of Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close was both renowned and reviled upon its theatrical release last December.  The 2005 novel of the same name by Jonathan Safran Foer also met with mixed reception upon its reception.  Britain’s Spectator magazine stated that “the book is a heartbreaker: tragic, funny, intensely moving.”  But Michiko Kakutani of the NY Times was critical of Safran Foer’s book, describing the story as “cloying” and the main character as “unsympathetic.”

Of course, critics are only one limited reference for understanding a film’s (or book’s) merits.  Ultimately, we all need to decide for ourselves.  But why would there be such divisive opinions on the book and Stephen Daldry’s film adaption?

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Roman Polanski’s Chinatown, a Perfect Film

Roman Polanski

This week, Roman Polanski’s classic film, Chinatown, returns triumphantly for new audiences when it is released for the first time on Blu-ray.

Chinatown (1974) rightfully shares company with some of the most highly regarded films of the American cinema.  The film delivers on all fronts – from writing, directing, photography, production design and editing, to a fabulous cast of actors.  Chinatown’s creative forces integrate effortlessly to create a timeless film, which transcends genre.  In this respect, it is a perfect film.

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