The Deceiver. DImage: Pixar Wall-E is almost nine years old, so maybe it’s time to re-evaluate the movie. Maybe it’s not a morality tale about consumerism and the environment, with Wall-E as the example of purity. Because a new fan theory posits that the adorable robot is, in fact, Satan, and guys? It makes more sense than you’d expect. Advertisement This new theory comes courtesy of Reddit’s r/FanTheories and here it is in full: It’s ever so slightly plausible, in that, yeah, the robot is named EVE and Wall-E does give her a plant. On the other hand… it presumes that the future where humans are all lazy blobs in a spaceship where robots tend to their every need is paradise, which… huh. Advertisement Not to claim that everything needs to be interpreted the way the creators intended, but Wall-E’s meaning has been pretty thoroughly documented. EVE got her name because Wall-E’s loneliness parallels Adam’s. The Art of Wall-E revealed that part of Eve’s journey with the plant was inspired by EVE’s similarity to the dove returning to Noah’s Ark with the olive branch. Of course, READ FULL STORY AT KOTAKU!
Spring is here, but that doesn’t mean any of us want to do anything but binge watch TV. Netflix is bringing a bunch of its original TV shows back this month in the United States alongside tons of other new movies. The Highlights Netflix has been really into itself recently, dumping more and more original stuff into the queue every month. It’s no different in May. There are a couple new movies, including the French thriller, In the Shadow of Iris, Tarantino’s parody-comedy-statement war movie starring Brad Pitt, Inglorious Basterds, the 12 Monkeys-inspired southernish accent, War Machine, and the mystery-comedy Handsome. Advertisement Netflix TV shows are in the spotlight once again, with tons of stuff coming back. That includes the next seasons of House of Cards, Sense8, Master of None, Bloodline, and Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt. Documentary nerds like me will also be stoked for the variety of new documentaries coming in, like space documentary The Mars Generation, the always fun political film about a sleezeball manipulator, Get Me Roger Stone, and Netflix’s true crime series about a murdered nun, The Keepers. As for non-Netflix content, it’s a little slow this month, but we do get a few heavy-hitters, including Doctor…
GIF Paprika What are your favorite anime movies? Spirited Away? Princess Mononoke? My Neighbor Totoro? Eh, I could see that coming. These Studio Ghibli movies are masterpieces. They’re also not the only anime films out there. Crazy, right? Advertisement It’s safe to say that Ghibli corners the market for 90-minute escapist anime that makes you feel good by the end. But there are psychological heights some Ghibli movies don’t hit. Below are my top picks for non-Ghibli films. Many are pretty disturbing. All of them are genius. Perfect Blue After seeing Perfect Blue, I went outside to my porch, buried my head in my hands and smoked like five cigarettes. I sat there for nearly an hour. If you’re the kind of person who dug Requiem for a Dream, Perfect Blue is up your alley. Actually, Requiem director Darren Aronofsky bought the rights to Perfect Blue so he could replicate a scene in it. Perfect Blue is about a pop idol and her stalker. To make the leap from middling idol to noted actress, she’s offered to film a rape scene that could compromise her pure, sweet image. The more famous READ FULL STORY AT KOTAKU!
Okay, look. I need to ask something: Transformers franchise, are you okay? Because this… thing you’ve unleashed upon the world feels like you’re not. Are you entering your angsty teen years? Is that what all the swords are about? Advertisement Just watch this thing. I have no words for this movie that is apparently about how Transformers were members of King Arthur’s Round Table but now are apparently destroying Earth so that everyone from the last movie lives some weird hell that’s a combination of Batman v Superman and Mad Max Beyond Thunderdome. Which makes it sound much cooler than it actually looks to be. See for yourself: Also: this thing definitely filmed some Nazi stuff and we still haven’t seen it in the trailers. Come on, Transformers. What’s going on? You can tell us. Anyway, this… movie comes out June 23. READ FULL STORY AT KOTAKU!
Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them: A surprisingly sweet movie with a muggle who steals the show. Advertisement What it is: The latest movie in the Harry Potterverse. Fantastic Beasts was a fictional textbook the kids read in the original books, which was then turned into a “real” textbook written by Harry Potter creator J.K. Rowling. The film, written and produced by Rowling, tells the story of the textbook’s author, a “magizoologist” named Newt Scamander, as he stops off in New York City in the roaring 20s. (Also, for the record, Jason and I have a very interesting theory about Newt Scamander that COULD STILL TURN OUT TO BE TRUE.) Is it good? Sure! The plot was kind of a mess but the movie was a lot more winning than I thought it’d be. Advertisement Quick thoughts: I liked Fantastic Beasts on the whole, in large part because it provided an interesting contrast to the main Harry Potter series. I hadn’t really considered how narrow those books were in scope: The main characters were all wizard kids. All seven books were set almost entirely READ FULL STORY AT KOTAKU!
Your Name, already the world’s highest-grossing anime movie ever at the box office, is rolling out in U.S. theaters on April 7. In Japan, it was a smash hit that played sold-out theaters. It’s an instant classic that deserves a place next to Spirited Away and Princess Mononoke in the roster of anime masterpieces with mainstream appeal. Not many anime films have challenged Studio Ghibli’s western monopoly on the brand of anime that even your non-otaku friends will like. Your Name is paving the way for more. Advertisement It’s a tale of body-swapping and clumsy teenaged romance. Mitsuha splits her time between her isolating high school life and tending a shrine. She lives in a far-flung, grassy mountain town called Itomori. Unsatisfied, Mitsuha complains that she’d much prefer life as a handsome boy in Tokyo. Cue Taki: An impulsive, hard-headed Tokyo boy who works part-time in an Italian restaurant. At first, Mitsuha believes that Taki is a boy she simply dreamed of. But when she wakes up the next morning, her friends greet her with trepidation, reminding her that, the day before, she wasn’t herself: she got lost on the way READ FULL STORY AT KOTAKU!
Now that the Star Wars franchise is alive and well again, you can get caught up with the two original trilogies on Blu-ray for $30 each, complete with a bunch of special features. Place your bets on which one will sell better in the comments! $30 From amazon 3485 purchased by readersGizmodo Media Group may get a commission $30 From amazon 1174 purchased by readersGizmodo Media Group may get a commission More Deals Today’s Best Deals: Board Games, Star Wars, $18 Bidet, and MoreToday’s Best Deals: Board Games, Star Wars, $18 Bidet, and MoreToday’s Best Deals: Board Games, Star Wars, $18… A huge Amazon board game sale, Star Wars trilogies, and a $4 keychain multitool lead off…Read more Read more READ FULL STORY AT KOTAKU!
Even if your personal Miyazaki collection is comprehensive, I bet you have some friends and family members who would appreciate his films. Several of his best are down to $13 on Blu-ray on Amazon right now, which is just about as cheap as they ever get. $13 From amazon 4077 purchased by readersGizmodo Media Group may get a commission $13 From amazon 524 purchased by readersGizmodo Media Group may get a commission $13 From amazon 2494 purchased by readersGizmodo Media Group may get a commission $13 From amazon 1545 purchased by readersGizmodo Media Group may get a commission $13 From amazon 965 purchased by readersGizmodo Media Group may get a commission $13 From amazon 1521 purchased by readersGizmodo Media Group may get a commission READ FULL STORY AT KOTAKU!
Last night, Kotaku’s intrepid anime and snack reporters, me and Mike Fahey, saw the anticipated and controversial live-action adaptation of Ghost in the Shell, an anime we both love. It was, to say the least, an utter disappointment. We spent some time this morning sharing our thoughts on the film, and now we’re sharing them with you. Advertisement – Spoilers below – Cecilia D’Anastasio: All right. We’ve seen Ghost in the Shell. We’ve made our judgments. But before we detail those judgments, answer this: What were you expecting going into it? Advertisement Mike Fahey: A couple of hours sitting in a dark room looking vaguely concerned and/or upset. I like to set easy-to-hit expectations. Cecilia: Low bar, Fahey! Especially for a franchise I assume you enjoy. You didn’t have any expectations based on the [apparently infinite parade of] trailers or other live-action anime adaptations you’d seen? Just a vague foreboding? Fahey: Any excitement I may have had has been severely dampened by the casting controversy surrounding the film. I had no problem with Scarlett Johansson being cast as the Major. A lot of other READ FULL STORY AT KOTAKU!
The Star Wars “Complete Saga” Blu-ray isn’t actually complete anymore, since it doesn’t include The Force Awakens or Rogue One, but $58 is still the best price we’ve seen on the first six films. You also get audio commentary on each movie, 45 deleted scenes, and three bonus discs full of extra featurettes. $58 From amazon 311 purchased by readers Gizmodo Media Group may get a commission More Deals Sunday’s Best Deals: Star Wars Saga, WeMo Mini, Amazon Luggage Sale, and More Sunday’s Best Deals: Star Wars Saga, WeMo Mini, Amazon Luggage Sale, and More Sunday’s Best Deals: Star Wars Saga, WeMo Mini,… The complete* Star Wars Blu-ray, Belkin’s WeMo Mini Smart Plug, and discounted luggage lead off… Read more Read more READ FULL STORY AT KOTAKU!
Around this time three years ago The Lego Movie arrived in theaters and everything was awesome. No one would ever imagine that a feature-length toy commercial could actually be one of the funniest, smartest, and most imaginative movies of the year, even if it totally got robbed of an Oscar nomination. Since then, the Lego cinematic universe has only expanded. By the time I stop laughing at jokes from February’s Lego Batman Movie, it’ll be time to laugh at jokes from The Lego Ninjago Movie hitting theaters this September. But as fans of Lego in all kinds of media, we couldn’t help but notice how these films’ wild sense of humor reminded us of the long-running series of Lego video games and its wacky cutscenes. And after playing three of the most recent Lego games (Lego Worlds, Lego City Undercover, and Lego Dimensions), the movie-game connections seemed even stronger. Was it just a coincidence that these two branches of the Lego tree resembled each other? Maybe, or maybe not. So to get to the bottom of this, we went to the source and talked to employees at TT Games, the developer behind the Lego games, and Animal Logic, the animation…
Netflix is about to rain down on April with some nerd-friendly original content, but that’s coming at the cost of some of the best nerd-friendly classic TV. The Highlights Let’s get the bad news out first. Several classic series are leaving Netflix. From my probably incorrect memory, a few of these have been with Netflix since the start of streaming. Okay, here we go then, you ready? Because this is going to hurt. Here are some of the shows leaving Netflix April 1: Firefly, The X-Files, Angel, Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Dollhouse, House, Bones, Ally McBeal, and Roswell. Movies aren’t safe either, with The Princess Bride, Ferris Bueller’s Day Off, and The Usual Suspects all leaving at the beginning of the month too. I know, it doesn’t feel great. Take a second. There’s good news though. Advertisement The new Mystery Science Theater series arrives April 14 and Bill Nye’s new show, Bill Nye Saves the World arrives April 21. Also coming back are the The Get Down and Chewing Gum, alongside a handful of interesting looking new shows, like, Girlboss and Dear White People. New Netflix movies are also on READ FULL STORY AT KOTAKU!
GIF by author from footage provided by Sony Pictures. Most of the people interested in seeing Life, the astronaut thriller out on March 24, probably have certain expectations based on the movie’s familiar premise: human beings encounter extraterrestrial organism, terrifying things ensue, just as in Alien, Predator and other classics. But while that most basic plotline does describe what happens—Life is the smartest, sharpest version of man vs. ET to come along in a long while. Life happens almost entirely on the International Space Station, opening with a crew of specialists from Japan, Russia, Great Britain, and the United States preparing to receive a sample of a microscopic lifeform unearthed on Mars. One of the best plot beats comes early on in director Daniel Espinosa’s film, when a little girl from a school that won a contest names the just-discovered critter “Calvin.” That moment happens on a stage in Times Square, framing this discovery as a watershed moment in human history that’s celebrated the whole world over. Advertisement As the days stretch on aboard the ISS , Calvin evolves rapidly into a form that described as READ FULL STORY AT KOTAKU!
Image via Vibrant Mud, LLC. Near the end of Muppet Guys Talking, puppeteer Dave Goelz is asked a question about where he’s found the nobility in his life’s work. “[In] folly,” he answers. “Human folly. Celebrating the degree to which we’re all lost.” That’s just one instance of how this documentary about the world’s favorite puppets gets surprisingly deep. Advertisement Directed by Frank Oz and screened this week in Austin at SXSW, Muppet Guys Talking is a warm, unassuming film that documents a reunion of five people who worked with Jim Henson. The movie is essentially a recording of a 10-hour hang-out in 2012 that Oz had with Goelz, the man who’s brought Gonzo and Dr. Bunsen Honeydew to life for decades, Fran Brill (Prairie Dawn), Jerry Nelson (Count von Count), and Bill Barretta (Rowlf, Pepe the King Prawn). Oz, having performed as Yoda and Miss Piggy, is among the best known of the crew but the point of the film is to let audiences know about some of the more unheralded puppeteers who helped bring the Muppets to full bloom. There’s a mix of cozy reminiscing, nuts-and-bolts discussion of craft, READ FULL STORY AT KOTAKU!