Tag Archives: Mark Strong

Low Winter Sun: New Cop Drama Coming to AMC

Some of us are still mourning the loss of SouthLAnd and others are completely wrapped up in The Killing, but starting this weekend, there will be a new cop drama to fill our times with. Adapted from the mini-series of the same name, Low Winter Sun, is the story of a cop who made a decision and the fallout that followed.

In a somewhat unusual move, the AMC version of Low Winter Sun stars the same actor who played the lead role in the British version. Mark Strong plays homicide detective Frank Agnew who, with his partner, Joe Geddes (Lennie James), kills a fellow cop. Of course if it was the perfect crime, there wouldn’t be much of a show so the slain officer is found and the show focuses on the onion like repercussions.

Low Winter Sun is set and filmed in a city dealing with its own demons of late, Detroit. While Detroit isn’t a listed character in the shows credits, it’s not hard to imagine that the city will lend its own flavor to the action much like NYC does to Law and Order and Baltimore did to The Wire. In fact the show’s creator, Chris Mundy, hearkened back to The Wire when talking to The Washington Post.

[box_light]I don’t mean to presume that we’re doing things as well as them, you can draw parallels between Detroit and Baltimore, and Baltimore was a character in that, in such a good way. Let’s try to be that good, but let’s make sure we’re not doing something simply because it’s familiar and somebody … already did it.[/box_light]

Of course it would be difficult to top the brilliance that was The Wire, but not too shabby of a goal to shoot for.

Low Winter Sun premieres this Sunday, August 11th, after the final season premiere of Breaking Bad.

Low Winter Sun cast




Low Winter Sun poster

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Trailer Roundup: Prof. X, Sinestro, and the Governor Made a Movie, Plus Hangover 3…

This is Grizzly Bomb’s Trailer Round for April the 12th in the year of 2013…

[tabgroup][tab title=”The Hangover Part III”]

When you saw the first Hangover film, did you think it would make a great trilogy?  Someone did.  So here it is.  The triumphant conclusion to the story that doesn’t appear to have an ending.  You know it will be good when it returns back to where the first film has already been.  Here we go again, again.

The Wolf Pack returns to Vegas on what appears to be a mission fulfilling the wishes of deceased father in law Sid Garner.  Or, at least, that is what I believe the plot to be.  The only thing confirmed from the trailer is that giraffe dismemberment is hilarious.

Director:  Todd Phillips

Stars:  Bradley Cooper, Melissa McCarthy, Zach Galifianakis, Jamie Chung, Justin Bartha, John Goodman, Heather Graham, Ken Jeong, and Ed Helms.

Release Date:  May 24, 2013

[/tab][tab title=”Welcome To The Punch”]

Jacob Sternwood (Mark Strong) is an ex-criminal.  But like father, like son.  Go figure?  His son ends up in the hospital after a heist gone wrong, and Sternwood has to get him out.  So this should be the perfect opportunity for Max Lewinsky (James McAvoy) to put Sternwood behind bars for good.  Wait, no.  That would be too simple.They grab my interest when they attach the name Ridley Scott in the opening sequence.  Does this mean it will be a great film?  No.  It just means they have my attention.

Director: Eran Creevy

Stars: James McAvoy, David Morrissey, Mark Strong, Andrea Riseborough, Jason Flemyng, Peter Mullan, Johnny Harris, and Elyes Gabel.

Release Date:  March 15, 2013 UK

[/tab][tab title=”Somebody Up There Likes Me”]

This seems to be one of those dry indie comedies that I find difficult to relate to.  Though it is considered a comedy, it has evident dark tones.  That being the case, I wouldn’t expect our presented “protagonist” to advance or become any better by the films end.  Therefore, with no relatable characters, I would fail to have my usual cathartic experience.  This is often the case with dark comedies.

Why should you see it?  Well, heck.  It’s got Ron Swanson in it, now doesn’t it?  Not really, but Nick Offerman is in his typical form which I am sure is quite entertaining.  The more screen time he gets, the better this movie will be.

Director:  Bob Byington

Stars:  Nick Offerman, Keith Poulson, Jess Weixler, Stephanie Hunt, Marshall Bell, Kate Lyn Sheil, and Kevin Corrigan.

Release Date:  March 8, 2013

[/tab][tab title=”Stuck In Love”]

This seems like an endearing little piece with a large cast that I very much enjoy.  The trailer shows what appears to be a great representation of modern love in a divorced society.  Selfishness motivates most of our decisions, and because of it, we let things go that we shouldn’t, and we give up on things that deserve our attention.Sometimes, it’s tragic how dependable we can be on other human beings.  Love is the overpowering emotion that convinces us many times that the unreasonable is reasonable.  I know this description seems complex, but it is all invoked from this trailer.  So it seems like a pretty interesting movie.

Director:  Josh Boone

Stars:  Logan Lerman, Lily Collins, Jennifer Connelly, Kristen Bell, Stephen King, Greg Kinnear, Liana Liberato, Nat Wolff, Spencer Breslin, and Patrick Schwarzenegger.

Release Date:  June 14, 2013

[/tab][tab title=”White House Down”]

I feel like this movie will succeed.  Hear me out.  Everyone was a bit disappointed with the flat, explosion friendly Die Hard 5.  They felt a little bit better when Olympus Has Fallen came out.  They felt that their Die Hard void had been filled.  So people will enter into the summer movie madness remembering that they enjoyed a film where the White House was under attack from foreign invaders.

So enter White House Down.  It is very Red Dawn ish.  Which, I love.  It cannot be determined if the invaders are foreign or domestic, but judging upon the Lincoln quote, probably domestic.  It’s like Red Dawn meets Die Hard 4.

Director:  Roland Emmerich

Stars:  Channing Tatum, Jamie Foxx, Jason Clarke, Joey King, Maggie Gyllenhaal, James Woods, Richard Jenkins, Rachelle Lefevre, and Jimmi Simpson.

Release Date:  June 28, 2013

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Grizzly Review: John Carter

After all of the buzz surrounding the budget of John Carter, the aggressive marketing campaign leading up to it’s release and the many clips released by Disney, was it all worth it? In my opinion, yes. John Carter was a fully realized world filled with a group of characters brought to life by a very well rounded out cast of actors. I had thought the movie would appeal to a much wider audience, but after watching the movie it’s obvious that a lot of kids would be lost upon many of the story points. Or they would just not care and want to see more of the four armed Thark aliens and John Carter’s faithful pet Woola.

On the planet Mars, known to it’s inhabitants as Barsoom, the residents of the mobile city Zodanga threaten to overrun and conquer the world after gifted with the use of an ultimate weapon provided by the mysterious Therns. The only people left to oppose them on Barsoom are the noble people of Helium (Not the stuff you put in balloons.) led by Jeddak Tardos Mors (Ciarin Hinds), the father of the beautiful princess of Helium known as Dejah Thoris. That’s the first piece of the story, while the seconds lies in the form of former Confederate cavalry man John Carter. After practically stumbling upon a Thern in a cave, John Carter is transported via the Thern’s medallion to the world of Barsoom where he will play an integral part in it’s fate and that of the princess Dejah Thoris.

The first 15-20 minutes of the movie introduce us to the character of John Carter and the life he now leads on Earth. He is obviously a bit of a haunted man, which is alluded to throughout the movie and at one point shown to us in a spectacular battle scene where John Carter takes on a horde of green martians that is interspersed with flashbacks to his past on Earth. As I said before, the movie was a bit bigger on story than I thought but still had a great mix of action in between all of that. The story was a bit more intricate than just a marriage between the Princess and the Zodangan leader Sab Than (Played by Dominic West) but involves the Therns as the main threat, and not only limited to Barsoom. I won’t spoil anything in the review, so just go see the movie!

The special effects and motion capture were of course beautifully done in the film. The Tharks and John Carter’s initial interactions with them were interesting and actually pretty damn funny. Willem Dafoe’s Tars Tharkas mistakenly thinking John Carter’s name is Virginia had me laughing more than once. The world of Barsoom was beautifully realized on screen even in the scenes in the desert wastelands. Helium and Zodanga were both unique in their own way and I can’t wait to see more of the planet’s many locales explored if they do indeed have a sequel to the movie. It’s definitely left open to one by the movie’s end, but done so in a way where if they don’t have one there is still some closure.

I found Taylor Kitsch to be reasonably likeable in the film. He showed that he could definitely be a decent leading man in a movie, and he’ll have a shot to do it once again in Battleship this summer. Almost overshadowing him in my opinion was Lynn Collins, who played the role of Dejah Thoris perfectly. I was thankful she wasn’t going to play the princess who is constantly kidnapped and held hostage. Though not invincible, Dejah can definitely hold her own with a sword. I really think that the warrior woman thing is overdone in film, but I didn’t have a problem with it in this movie. John Carter, though seemingly invincible in the movie also had his moments of weakness as he was immobilized at one point by the Thern Matai Shang, played by Mark Strong. The chemistry between Kitsch and Collins was working in the movie as well, which makes me hope we can see it develop more in a sequel. This goes without even mentioning how hot Lynn Collins looked in the film… give me a martian girl anytime. (Not a Thark though.) Also give me Lynn Collins in more movies besides another Wolverine movie.

Overall I give the movie 4 out of 5 Tharks. The movie kept me interested but did have a bit of a lull towards the middle part. Even though Dominic West and Mark Strong did a fine job of playing the villains of the story, I’d have preferred they were in it just a little more in scenes directly with John Carter. I truly hope the movie makes enough to justify a sequel, because now that they’ve got the story and many characters pretty much established the sequel could jump right into things instead of spending any time on Earth. (Pay attention Green Lantern sequel.) The movie is totally worth the price of a theater ticket, though you may as well stay away from the 3D like I did. No movie is truly worth a 15 dollar ticket.

“Ohhhh baby – Youu, you got what I neeeeed, but you say he’s just a friend. Wait, what are we doing?”

10 Minutes of Disney’s ‘John Carter’!

Disney is not messing around with it’s final big marketing push for their blockbuster hopeful John Carter, because now they’ve made what appears to be the first ten minutes of the sci-fi action flick available for all to see! Just don’t be expecting to see anything taking place on Mars or even a glimpse of any type of alien. But I have to say the creepy voice over at the end is worth it at the end. He made me very uncomfortable:

Not too shabby in my opinion. I think after seeing almost 20 minutes of the movie via various clips that have been released and all of the positive reviews thus far that John Carter is almost guaranteed to be a damn good movie not only for fans of the sci-fi genre, but even the casual movie goer as well. Disney is banking a lot on this high budget flick to spawn into a franchise and it definitely has a shot if it can draw out the moviegoers even with current box office champ The Lorax only going into it’s second weekend. The Lorax made $70 Million plus this weekend and is sure to still snag the family audiences away from John Carter and it’s PG 13 rating. Best of luck to him and all those four armed green fellas though!

John Carter Sequel Already in the Works: Too Soo

As it goes with many of Hollywood’s potential blockbuster films, Disney hopes to make John Carter (of Mars) a very successful trilogy that will fill up their coffers even more. After the success of the Pirates of the Caribbean franchise took off and started murdering box office records, Disney began developing new movies to add similar success to their name as Pirates and even National Treasure. Tron: Legacy was one of those movies, which despite underperforming for Disney is still on it’s way to sequel-dom. Prince of Persia didn’t fair so well and will more than likely not garner a sequel.

Continue reading John Carter Sequel Already in the Works: Too Soo

Grizzly Review: Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy

The world of espionage, spies, secrets, and traitors isn’t necessarily what the James Bond movies make it out to be, quite the contrary actually. The car chases, gunfights, sexy sidekicks, and dry martinis aren’t the job. Instead, the world of a spy consists of endless amounts of research, chain smoking, and a lot of talking. The conversations, though, can be as heated, if not even more so, than your run-in-the-mill gun battle.

Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy, which is based on the novel of the same name by John Le Carre, follows retired agent George Smiley (Gary Oldman), who must come back to work to find a Soviet spy that is hidden in MI6, nicknamed the Circus. The man in charge, Control (John Hurt), is convinced that a mole is hidden within the Circus after he does some intensive research and studying with information that he’s been given from a reliable source.

The possibilities, according to Control, are “Tinker” who is Percy Alleline (Toby Jones), “Tailor” who is Bill Haydon (Colin Firth), “Soldier” who is Roy Bland (Ciaran Hinds), “Poor Man” who is Toby Esterhase (David Dencik), and “Beggar Man” who is Smiley himself. The beginning of the film reveals that there’s a Hungarian general who knows the identity of the mole. Jim Prideaux (Mark Strong) is sent to retrieve the information, but the mission goes bad, alerting the Soviets of MI6’s suspicion.


This leads Smiley to be forced into retirement by Control, who soon after passes away. Smiley is then brought back and given some very valuable information by a man named Ricki Tarr (Tom Hardy), a rogue agent who travels around the world searching for information that may benefit the MI6 during the Cold War. Smiley listens to his story, and considering the failed Hungarian mission, as well as a successful Soviet operation named Operation Witchcraft, he pursues it further, enlisting the help of fellow agent and apprentice, Peter Guillam (Benedict Cumberbatch).

Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy is a beautiful, intense, and sometimes extremely confusing spy film that trades in the usual action for something much more effective; edge-of-your-seat dialogue. The constant interaction between the characters keep things more than exciting, and the sometimes puzzling narrative is both saved and clarified by the use of conversation that literally had my heart racing. Gary Oldman’s flawless performance as George Smiley is a cinematic revelation. His calm and collected manner is sometimes eerie considering the situation, and the one time that he does raise his voice, it’s almost enough to frighten the viewer, especially considering the context.

Tom Hardy and Colin Firth are also absolutely amazing as spies who know things that everyone else wants to, but Mark Strong is surprisingly strong in his rather short but extremely necessary role. Personally, I’m a huge fan of his. I think he’s able to adapt to his environment extremely well, with enough diversity to successfully play both a bad guy and a good guy, sometimes in the same movie. It’s Tom Hardy though, that has probably the most screen time in the entire film besides Oldman, which is surprising considering how little he is shown in the trailer, and how far down he is in the opening credits. I’m not here to complain though, after his performances in Inception, Warrior and RockNRolla, he’s most definitely solidified himself a spot in being one of the best young actors in Hollywood today.

The direction by Tomas Alfredson is gorgeously mundane, and I mean that in the absolute best way possible. He recreates the 70s film style so well here that I felt as if I was doing a double feature with Marathon Man. You might recognize his name as being the director of the equally as fantastic vampire love story, Let The Right One In. Alfredson seems to have a knack for creating films with little action that are almost as exciting as a Transformers movie.

The film also plays as a retrospective, taking snippets of certain scenes and placing them in other scenes, which then leads them to go back to that original scene, but instead it moves forward a little bit. This allows the film to literally be a puzzle, with pieces being filled in left and right until the finale where everything is in place and the universal “aha!” moment is reached. Instead of me trying to explain it, think of it as an episode of How I Met Your Mother, how they flip back and forth between the present and other important times that relate to the story being told. You all know what I’m talking about, let’s just move on.

Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy is brutally violent when it needs to be, dryly funny at times, but it’s also a fantastically plotted film that requires quite a bit of attention from the viewer. I’ll be honest, this and Warrior were the only two films of the year where I didn’t look at my watch once to see how much time there was left. For a two hour film consisting mostly of dialogue, that’s pretty damn good if you ask me.

5/5 Grizzly’s

‘John Carter’: Trailers, Pics, Banners and 100 Years of History

Originally created by Edgar Rice Burroughs, John Carter is a character with a long and rich history dating back to 1911. First premiering in A Princess of Mars, John Carter served as a Confederate captain in the Civil War, before dying and being transported by ‘astral projection’ into an exact duplicate of his body on Mars, where he lived a life full of adventure, love, and war.

… and scantily clad Martian chicks

The Barsoom Series featured 11 books in which John Carter was either a major or supporting character. He’s been referenced in a number of sci-fi epics and influenced tons of authors in his century long history. So basically that means his movie trilogy potential is there.

Continue reading ‘John Carter’: Trailers, Pics, Banners and 100 Years of History