The Ninjago Movie Is Spawning Some Very Cool Lego Sets 

The theatrical film based on Lego’s long-running ninja setting arrives on September 22, but we’ll be playing with the vehicles, dragons, and massive shark mechs starting in August. Check out five awesome new sets hitting stores in the coming months. In case you’re unfamiliar with Ninjago, go to a toy store or something. It’s one of Lego’s longest-running original properties. Just about everybody loves ninjas, and for those who don’t, the line also features pirates, high-tech vehicles, mystical creatures—it’s like an eight-year-old boy’s imagination threw up in the Lego aisle. It’s so good. The movie doesn’t look too shabby either. And it’s not just a funny trailer. It’s also a catalog of many of the new sets dropping on August 1. The five I’m sharing today aren’t as large and expensive as the $300 city set Io9 showed off yesterday, but combined they’ve got more than enough firepower to lay it to waste. 70618 Destiny’s Bounty – $159.99 – 2,295 Pieces Master Wu’s got a training boat, and it’s pretty massive. The Destiny’s Bounty features three modular rooms, four minifigures, a working anchor and plenty of secrets to uncover. Though I suppose if you’re READ FULL STORY AT KOTAKU!

coming and going

All the Best Movies Coming to and Leaving Netflix in July 2017

Sun’s out, guns out! While it may be time to give your TV a much-needed summer vacation, hotter temps mean you’re more likely to heat things up romantically, and Netflix is here to help you chill with some out of this world summer additions (and some unfortunate show departures). The Highlights Let’s just get this out of the way. If you haven’t seen Rogue One: A Star Wars Story, save the date for July 18 to see the galaxy’s favorite droid, K-2SO—along with its fleshy, human compatriots—take on the Empire. If space isn’t your thing, or you’re in the mood for something familiar, Titanic, Free Willy, and—oh my goodness, Spawn: The Movie?!— all drop on July 1 to straight-up overload your nostalgia meter. Get some tissues. Kids are in for a special treat with Netflix debuting interactive TV shows that function as choose-your-own-adventure programs. Its first film, Puss in Book: Trapped in an Epic Tale, is already available for streaming, while Buddy Thunderstruck: The Maybe Pile debuts July 14. Both let you choose from two options at key points during the program to change the story’s progression and ultimately reach one of many predetermined endings. Have fun READ FULL STORY…

The Mummy Is Monstrous, Just for All the Wrong Reasons

Photo: Chiabella James The Mummy is the first movie in the “Dark Universe,” a planned series of films that will intertwine the ghoulish tales of the classic Universal Monsters. But it contains zero scares and is devoid of any sense of fun. What it does have is whole lot of Tom Cruise, and a Mummy whose motivation feels very, very problematic. Cruise is a movie star for a reason. Given the right material, he can be entertaining as hell—even when he’s not playing a particularly charming character, as seen in films like Edge of Tomorrow. In Alex Kurtzman’s The Mummy, Cruise’s Nick Morton is presented as deliberately unlikeable from the start; when first we meet him, he’s shirking his military duties in Iraq with the intention of pillaging ancient treasures from a village overrun by insurgents. After an energetic gun battle, Nick’s glib partner-in-looting, Vail (Jake Johnson, saddled with the thankless role of comic relief in a consistently unfunny movie), calls in an air strike to save their butts, and the resulting bomb opens up a tomb which contains you-know-who. As if Nick weren’t already looking like the worst guy in the desert—lying point-blank to his superior officer about his…

DC Comics

It’s Way Past Time For Wonder Woman to Headline Her Own Video Game

GIF Diana of Themyscira has a big movie coming out this week. She’s also a major player in new release Injustice 2, a video game where superheroes fight each other over crossing moral boundaries. But Wonder Woman shouldn’t just be part of an ensemble; she should be the main character. With the release of the Wonder Woman movie this weekend, Diana Prince finally joins Clark Kent, Bruce Wayne, and others in the ranks of DC Comics characters who became the focal point of a major motion picture. Superman and Batman have both also anchored dozens of video games ever since the days of the Atari 2600, but Wonder Woman still hasn’t been afforded the same honor. It’s a bizarre fact because so many of the component parts of the Wonder Woman would be great fodder for a video game. I’ve written about this subject before, seven years ago to be exact, and much has changed on the video game landscape. Nowadays, thanks to the shifting fortunes of the video game publishing business, we’re lucky if a shallow mobile game accompanies a superhero movie release. It used to be that such occasions were accompanied by a big-budget READ FULL STORY AT…

kotaku core

Neill Blomkamp Is Making Short Movies For Steam

Director Neill Blomkamp, the guy behind movies like District 9 and Elysium (not to mention a very good attempt at Halo), is now heading up a studio that is going to be releasing “experimental short films” on Steam. Here’s the first trailer for the films, coming out of a company called Oats Studios: Steam has been home to movies and documentaries for a while now, many of them short indie projects, but this would be the first time someone with that kind of resume was working specifically with the platform. Ditto for the actors involved: that’s Sigourney Weaver 0:40… The only word on a release is that these are “coming soon”. READ FULL STORY AT KOTAKU!


The Art Of Alien: Covenant

Now that the movie is out, the artists who worked on Alien: Covenant are free to share their stuff. And regardless of your thoughts on the movie itself, it’s all very pretty. Note that this isn’t everything from the vault, nor is it encompassing the work of every single artist who contributed to the movie. It’s just a selection, comprising the work of both concept artists and those responsible for the models and effects you see on the screen. To see the images in their native resolution, click on the “expand” button in the top-left corner. Advertisement Fine Art is a celebration of the work of video game artists, showcasing the best of both their professional and personal portfolios. If you’re in the business and have some concept, environment, promotional or character art you’d like to share, drop us a line! READ FULL STORY AT KOTAKU!

kong skull island

Kong: Skull Island Is Full Of Cute Video Game Easter Eggs

Jordan Vogt-Roberts, director of Kong: Skull Island, hid a bunch of video game tributes and influences throughout the movie so well that nobody noticed. So he’s now pointing them out. Some of the homages made it into the finished film: And some stuff didn’t: If you were going to ask “well why isn’t this guy making a video game movie”, he is: Vogt-Roberts is the latest director attached to Metal Gear Solid, a project that let’s not forget was announced five years ago. READ FULL STORY AT KOTAKU!


Tom Holland Will Play Young Nathan Drake in the Uncharted Movie

Image: Holland as he appears in Spider-Man: Homecoming, and Nathan Drake as a child in Uncharted 4. Credit: Sony Pictures/Sony Computer Entertainment Sony’s long-in-gestation adaptation of the smash hit video game series Uncharted has apparently gone under a major reworking. It’s now a prequel series set before the events of the games, and its hero Nathan Drake will be a youngster played by Spider-Man himself. Deadline reports that Shawn Levy’s film—itself a retooling of initial plans for an adaptation of Naughty Dog’s Indiana Jones-esque action series—will now take inspiration from flashback sequences shown in the third game of the series, Uncharted 3: Drake’s Deception, which showed the young Nathan Drake meeting his future partner-in-crime Victor “Sully” Sullivan for the first time. Young Nate as he appeared in the PS3 video game Uncharted 3. The website claims the vast retooling of plans for the film came when Sony Pictures chief Tom Rothman saw a new cut of Spider-Man: Homecoming, which has lead to not only Uncharted getting a new re-write—with Sony allegedly currently hunting for a new writer to re-do Joe Carnahan’s cript—but also Homecoming star Tom Holland coming on board to play the young Drake. READ FULL STORY AT KOTAKU!

editors picks

What We Loved (And Didn't Love) About Guardians Of The Galaxy Vol. 2

There’s a new Guardians of the Galaxy movie! Let’s talk about it. Advertisement Mike Fahey and I are both avowed fans of James Gunn’s original Guardians of the Galaxy film, and both of us headed to the theater over the weekend to see his follow-up. Did the second outing capture the unlikely charm of the first one? Is it possible to truly accept the fact that this movie takes place in the same fictional universe as Hawkeye’s farm? Is Yondu merely great, or is he the greatest? Let’s break it down. Warning: Spoilers for Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 follow. Kirk Hamilton: Mr. Fahey! You saw Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 over the weekend. I also saw Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 over the weekend. Let’s talk about it. My overall take was: charming but crowded, a little overcooked but still plenty of fun. What did you think? Advertisement Mike Fahey: Well, Mr. Hamilton, I do agree that it was a completely charming movie with a whole lot going on, but I wouldn’t quite call it crowded. If fact, I think it READ FULL STORY AT KOTAKU!


A Handful of the Best Studio Ghibli Blu-rays Are Down to Great Low Prices

If you haven’t completed your personal Studio Ghibli collection yet, three of Miyazaki’s best films are down to some of the lowest prices Amazon’s ever listed today, for Prime members only. $11 From amazon 4454 purchased by readersGizmodo Media Group may get a commission $12 From amazon 2696 purchased by readersGizmodo Media Group may get a commission $12 From amazon 1794 purchased by readersGizmodo Media Group may get a commission READ FULL STORY AT KOTAKU!

blade runner

The New Blade Runner 2049 Trailer Is Here and It's Gorgeous

Ryan Gosling joins the world of Blade Runner. Image: Warner Bros The second trailer for Blade Runner 2049 is here and, as expected, it’s just undeniably beautiful. Advertisement Those visuals. That music. Holy crap, this is Blade Runner. Check out the trailer. I mean, there is a lot to unpack here and we’ll do so in a separate post. But the first thing you take away is how director Denis Villeneuve nailed this world. The reflections, the projections, this is the Los Angeles we fell in love with in the Ridley Scott original. The story is still relatively mysterious, however. Jared Leto seems to be playing a new kind of Tyrell, in his elaborate apartment making what we assume to be new Replicants. But what is Ryan Gosling’s character, K, looking for? How does Deckard fit in? Who are all those other stars playing? This trailer is genius in its ability to tease us and tell us nothing at the same time. Advertisement Blade Runner 2049 opens October 6. [YouTube] READ FULL STORY AT KOTAKU!


The Lego Batman Movie Gave My Daughter a New Way to Understand the Concept of Family

The last thing I was expecting The Lego Batman Movie to do was to show my daughter how even the Caped Crusader needs people to care about and what it means to have the people you care torn away from you. Over the weekend, another parent invited my daughter and me to join him and his kids at an afternoon showing of The Lego Batman Movie. When I sidled up to my kid on the couch in the morning, she was mainlining cartoons. Her response to me when I asked her about seeing The Lego Batman Movie was an immediate “no.” No thinking it over, just “no,” which is atypical for her. A little prodding had her spilling her guts: “I don’t like bad guys.” It’s a refrain I’ve heard a lot from her, one where she goes on to say that she doesn’t like the way that they “don’t follow the good laws, hurt people, and take things that don’t belong to them.” Advertisement To her, “bad guys” are an indistinct, fungible resource for superheroes to beat up on. Whenever we talk about superheroes, she READ FULL STORY AT KOTAKU!

adam driver

A Curious Addition to Rey and Kylo Ren's Official Bios Could Be the Key to Star Wars' Future

Warning: This could be nothing or it could be everything. Sometime in the past few months, the official Star Wars database entries for Rey and Kylo Ren were updated. Admittedly these get updated fairly regularly, adding detail as plot points slide from being considered spoilers to becoming simple facts. But these last updates are very, very curious. Advertisement Both entries have added the specific language that Rey and Kylo Ren have a “mysterious connection” and a “strange connection” to one and other. We know what you’re thinking because we thought it too. “So what?” The film makes it pretty obvious these two Force users have some sort of connection, even if it’s something as simple as a rivalry. But it’s the timing of this addition that really makes us scratch our head. Advertisement It’s difficult to find out when specifically the changes were made but, using we can look back at the most recent captures of both pages. For Rey, that last capture was in October 2016; for Kylo Ren, it was December 2016. Neither archive of the page had the phrases in READ FULL STORY AT KOTAKU!


Ghost In The Shell Movie Gets A Proper Trailer