Ever wanted a soup-to-nuts list of all the crime films coming out next year? Lord knows I’ve lost sleep over the lack of one. Well, you’re in luck. We’ve stepped up to the plate and produced this shamelessly long list of The 20 Most Anticipated Crime Films of 2012.
The following lists are for the increasingly ballyhooed network television midseason, which has somehow become a part of the average American’s everyday lexicon. Criminal Complex-style, of course. So you know, guns and feds and spies and all that…
If you wander around a second hand book shop and start leafing through old history textbooks you will rapidly notice that history used to be nothing but stories about men with beards and top hats. Looking back on this state of affairs, we can now see that one of the reasons for this is that… Continue reading Kaoru Mori’s A Bride’s Story… Stripp’d
The beginning of the end as the spawn of Dream enters the game in these Matt Cheney essays on The Kindly Ones.
Last time, we had a look at a few of the 8-bit Japanese role-playing games that, due to the cruel realities of the 1980s video game market, never made it to America. Sadly, the dawning of the 16-bit age did not change this state of affairs.
It struck me as I was watching J. Edgar that as much as I enjoy James Ellroy’s work and how funny I find his depiction of Hoover in his Blood’s a Rover, it actually is a really cartoony version of the guy. Ellroy kinda does that a lot, and that’s fine, as not only do I like cartoons… Continue reading J. EDGAR Is Leo’s Show, All The Way
“Oishi sausage des!” –Sion Sono, Guilty of Romance Okay, hands up if you know what a love hotel is? Yeah, right, feel free to skip ahead. For those who don’t: A love hotel is basically a venue that you pay for by the hour to go and have sex with someone. They are frequently themed and… Continue reading Murder, Sex, and True Fake Crime in Sion Sono’s Guilty of Romance
A little Canterbury Tales in Dreaming for Matthew Cheney to analyze for us.
There are top-rated crime shows every season these days, with something illegal to appeal to anybody somewhere on the airwaves. Whether it’s the tone, the characters or the narrative, the diverse range of crime storytelling hits chords with all kinds of viewing markets. It’s our contention that some of these chords must intertwine, and make… Continue reading 5 TV Crime Show Crossovers That Must Happen
I walked away from watching The Rum Diary with feelings as dichotomous as the two halves of the film. The first half is what the film appears to be in the trailers, while the second is a fairly serious take on corruption and the censorship of news by those who control what is printed. Neither part… Continue reading Johnny Depp’s THE RUM DIARY Is Like Two Movies in One – REVIEW
I did not go into this newest version of The Three Musketeers with high expectations. In point of fact, I expected the film to be kind of bad. I find myself forced to confess a reluctant admiration for just how bad it turned out to be. What I expected was a historically inaccurate melodrama, with… Continue reading THE THREE MUSKETEERS Is a Hot, Delicious Mess | review
Um…yeah. So, the thought came to me that it might be appropriate to have a section of the site devoted to the “gangsta” movies that began in the early nineties with flicks like Boyz N The Hood. Then I sat down to type it out.
I’m a natural skeptic. Not an unusual or profound thing for my generation, but that’s what I am. In growing older, I find my tastes funneling down into increasingly ordered grooves from which I rarely stray.
In crime TV, there’s another major push underway from NBC, Prime Suspect, that is bringing A-list talent to bear in an effort to seize some of those sweet, sweet CBS crime junky ratings. In Prime Suspect, Maria Bello, seen in such edgy theater releases as A History of Violence, plays a tough NYPD cop that… Continue reading 5 Ways the US PRIME SUSPECT Is Better Than the UK
There are myriad reasons why people become artists—creative drive, fame/notoriety, money. Actually, that’s about it. But one reason not discussed all that often is simple boredom. The non-creative life can be a real drag, working a regular job, marrying a regular spouse in order to birth regular kids. Artistic endeavors, especially in this modern western… Continue reading Crime Imitates Life: Danny Ocean Gets More Chicks than Terry Benedict
It’s a role of intense emotional shifts frequently conveyed internally. It’s a portrayal of severe emotional and psychological damage created with such subtlety and intelligence it’s hard to imagine any healthy twenty-two year old pulling it off, let alone one related to seemingly vapid child star/fashion designer twins. Yet, here we are. I have a… Continue reading Whatever Her Name Is, She’s Brilliant: The MARTHA MARCY MAY MARLENE | Review
Despite his most recent snag with the law, Tom Sizemore has turned over a new leaf, one not grown from the coca plant. His guest role this season on CBS’s Hawaii Five-O as straight-laced IAB cop, Captain Vince Fryer, fits nicely with Sizemore’s new-found path of cleanliness and sobriety. We here at Criminal Complex truly hope this… Continue reading What Are the Odds Tom Sizemore Is Gonna Get Killed on Hawaii Five-O?
The Mortician is almost impossible to classify. I saw it described as “post-apocalyptic,” but it’s not really SF; a fair number of people in line with me for the screening thought it was horror because the main character is a mortician, but it’s not horror; technically I guess it’s a drama, but it’s not what… Continue reading The Mortician | New Orleans Film Fest movie review
Speaking simply in terms of narrative possibility, Batman is the writer’s best friend. A skillful wordsmith armed with this brooding pulp titan could spin an infinite number of genre-spliced yarns and never would the plot-well run dry.
96 Minutes is a festival gem. With the films screening in competition, you never really walk in sure of what you’ll get; like Forest Gump’s box of chocolate, sometimes the film’s a truffle and other times it’s a coconut macaroon (and you hate coconut). I went into 96 Minutes almost blind—I read the blurb but… Continue reading 96 MINUTES | movie review via New Orleans Film Festival
The Thing (2011) both exceeded my expectations and proved a massive disappointment, and while that statement may seem paradoxical it is nonetheless true.
In a story entitled “The Human Chair,” an anonymous, physically repulsive furniture maker builds a large, beautiful chair that he can climb in and out of to enjoy the sensuous delights of having woman of all physical types sit on him. When the chair—with him inside it, of course—is moved to a luxurious hotel, he… Continue reading Edogawa Rampo: The Godfather of Japanese Crime Fiction
Sam “Ace” Rothstein is the number one gambler in the country. He is so good at betting on sporting events that by merely betting on a team, he increases the odds for that team on a national scale. A talent like this is not inherent; Ace may be something of a natural at gambling, but… Continue reading Crime Imitates Life: CASINO’s Ace Rothstein Is an Artist of Chance
Ben Thompson is back to show you all the street and cosmic cred Doctor Doom has.
One of the less appreciated benefits of the ubiquitous online connections in the current generation of consoles is that it has helped to resuscitate some types of classic gameplay that had all but vanished over the prior two console generations.
0. The Challenge of Escapism Like Tim Robbins in The Shawshank Redemption (1994), we live our lives obsessed by thoughts of escape. Escape from our jobs, escape from our relationships, escape from our friends and escape from a life dominated by work, travel and a raging torrent of TV dinners and talent shows that carries… Continue reading Ludwig II… Stripp’d
South by Southwest favorite Bellflower finally made it to New Orleans this week. The movie’s description placed it well inside my sweet zone for films, so I made a point to go to one of its two screenings. Overall I liked the film. It had some beautiful and creative filming, the acting was solid—rare in… Continue reading ‘Bellflower’ is Long on Art, Short on Ultra-violence
Get Low is one of those movies that really should have been better than it is. The film has an interesting premise and the cast to pull that premise off, and yet somehow it simply falls flat. I would like to know the intent behind the film, because intention is the difference between a failure… Continue reading ‘Get Low’ Should Have Been Better | review
Lo was a movie I went into with no expectations. The description said it was about a man who summons a demon to find his girlfriend, who has been dragged to hell. That was enough for me.
Drive just might be my favorite movie of 2011. Certainly it is my favorite movie of the year so far. I loved it. Hands down. It is one of those rare movies that I wouldn’t change a thing about, and I say that after going in with high hopes based on Valhalla Rising(director Refn’s previous… Continue reading Ryan Gosling Steers DRIVE Past Good to Awesome
Boomtron recently got the chance to interview up and coming actress, Michelle Page. At age 24, she has gotten many great performances under her belt with more on the way. She talked about being an actress in different medians and working with other actors.
Okay, so here’s the thing… I started in on the sixth volume of Ooku: The Inner Chambers without bothering to re-read either the previous volumes in the series or my thoughts on those five books. As a result, I spent most of my reading time trying to remember who the various characters were and what… Continue reading Ooku: The Inner Chambers – Volume 6
Hal Duncan discusses the media reaction to Sarah Thornton’s successful libel suit of Lynn Barber.
Hal Duncan is guest blogging and has genre on his mind.
We recently interviewed Hannah Marks, the young star currently portraying Lindsay Santino on the new USA show Necessary Roughness. We talked about her previous acting gigs and new starring role.
Simone on the beat meeting the Game of Thrones cast… and towering over them?
It’s…over? After 10 years, eight films, and 1179 minutes (not to mention the books!), the Harry Potter series has finally come to its end. To be honest, I feel a lingering disbelief, an unwillingness to recognize that after such a span—literally years of anticipation—the last credits have finally rolled.
Delirium & Destruction reign in this series of essays by Matthew Cheney continuing his journey into the dreaming.
DC’s rich playboy mortal detective gets the badass treatment from Ben Thompson. Are you prepared?
The Autobots aren’t here for the good of humanity; they’re here for the good of America. We catch up with them attacking a nuclear weapons facility in an unknown Middle Eastern country (probably Iran). Luckily, the Transformers’ political ideology closely mirrors our own, with Optimus Prime regularly spouting off declarations of freedom. Absurdities aside (and… Continue reading Transformers 3: Dark of the Moon – movie review
Though not billed as such, this book is the last part of an unofficial trilogy. Battle of the Fang effectively bridges the story begun in McNeill’s A Thousand Sons and Abnett’s Prospero Burns to the ‘present’ of the 40K universe. A thousand years has passed since the bloody end of the Horus Heresy, and the… Continue reading Battle of the Fang by Chris Wraight Review
Constantine returns and we enter the land of stories in these collected essays on Fables & Reflections by Matthew Cheney.
The extremely talented author James Rollin is with me today to talk about his latest Sigma Force novel, the 7th in the series, The Devil Colony. Was America originally supposed to have 14 instead of 13 colonies? Who is a largely forgotten Founding Father whom you probably have never heard about in school? Did the… Continue reading The Devil Colony | James Rollins Interview
The ever evolving, the reborn, and death of Science Fiction? Hal Duncan contemplates SF.
After what seemed two clunky beginning issues, Cerebus hit its early stride with the introduction of Red Sophia, and it built from there. Over the course of the next ten issues, Sim’s ability to see to the heart of whatever subject he was skewering served him well. And it was a skewer, make no mistake;… Continue reading Return to Cerebus, cried the Earth-Pig Born! Part the Second
I’ve occasionally suggested to those who know me best, and subsequently to those who know me to be a terrible human being with few redeeming factors past my ability to imitate Hugo Weaving, that the only part about being an author I truly regret is the fact that I can’t enjoy internet meltdowns like I once could.
Sucker Punch is possibly the most spectacular failure I’ve seen in a while. It’s certainly ambitious, it’s got lots to praise, but there are far too many efforts falling flat or possibly offending for it to be considered a success. Aside from its merits or lack thereof, I want to look into what this movie… Continue reading Sucker Punch – A Study On The State Of Comics
Enuka Okuma is a young actress and now a director. She will be back on ABC June 16th for season 2 of the summer series Rookie Blue “as the tough talking rookie cop, Traci Nash, that has a secret past and a killer right hook.” She can also be seen on the big screen starting July 1,… Continue reading Enuka Okuma – “Cookie” – Interview
I recently had the pleasure of putting some questions to Canadian actress Ali Liebert, who I (and my long-time Boomtron followers) know best as “Nikki the bartender” from Harper’s Island. We talk about what her current projects are–hint: she has a lot!–and what it’s like working with people who have household name recognition. Read on to… Continue reading Have a Drink on Ali Liebert on Harper’s Island – Interview
The Black Death is about what you think it is. Set near the beginning of the era of the bubonic plague, it follows a young monk out of his abbey while he serves as guide for a group of knights on an errand from their bishop: to find a remote village said to be free… Continue reading The Black Death Tries Avoiding the Plague Like Cliches
Comics are all about beautiful people. Find me a leading character who isn’t physically desirable and I’ll find you a comic I either don’t know or it isn’t selling. This is an aesthetic medium and the main players need to catch our eye. This is why I find it so interesting the lead character in… Continue reading Square Jawed Heroes – The Aesthetics of Who Is Jake Ellis?
Fast Five is great, superb summer entertainment, and a fitting commemoration for the 10th anniversary of the original The Fast and the Furious. Justin Lin has fashioned himself into a groundbreaking action director in the vein of Michael Bay, and delivers one of the most original action films in recent memory. Considering the Fast and Furious… Continue reading Fast Five Quits Reality, Goes Full Spectacle – Review
Like Nietzsche with God, last fall Disney declared that the fairy tale was dead. In this case, that is, Disney would no longer be making animated features out of the old stories. As a child of the golden years of Disney fairy tales in the early 90’s, I found this news unutterably depressing. Forget that… Continue reading Tangled and the Death of the Disney Fairy Tale
Marvel Studios have had a lot of success at the box office lately, especially with the Iron Man movies, and they obviously plan to have a lot more success in the coming years with a busy slate of production. The latest offering is Thor. Is it going to be a success? Damn straight, and for… Continue reading Thor – Movie Review: A Study In Universe Expansion
Aaron Dembski-Bowden bringing his cannons to canon. Also his warhammer.
The Christian conception of redemption is an oddly commercial one. Grounded in Old Testament talk of ransoming the slaves, redemption is presented as a transaction through which Christians pay off their debt to God and buy back their freedom from sin. Indeed, Christ is said to have redeemed mankind by suffering on the cross, thereby… Continue reading Universal War One… Stripp’d
“The count’s frozen face was petrified and ashen and the blood still poured down the parallel cuts. His eyes bulged wide, full of horror and pain. It was glorious. If you like that kind of thing.” –William Goldman, The Princess Bride If you like that kind of thing, then I Saw the Devil really might… Continue reading I Saw the Devil: Feel Good Movie of the Year – review
Part the First Dave Sim is not dead.
I Sell the Dead is proof that not every IFC production is golden. It’s from a couple years ago now—2008, I think—and showed up on my Netflix recommendations page and sounded interesting enough to try. And that was the movie’s entire problem: it sounded interesting, but somehow wasn’t. It’s about a pair of grave robbers… Continue reading I Sell the Dead | movie review
Hal Duncan on Exoticism in Literature, representation, cultural appropriation, and needed suspicion.
Mozart originally ended his opera Don Giovanni with Don Giovanni descending into Hell, his soul claimed by the devil, and later added a final ensemble to bring the performance away from the bleakness of that end, which was considered too dark. For me, the opera is stronger with the final ensemble omitted, because it allows… Continue reading Source Code | movie review
Matthew McConaughey is one of those actors that you just love even though they don’t really do that many good movies. He’s done a handful over the years, maybe three or four, and he’s a man who makes a lot of movies. Thus I’ve joked for years that, with the amount of roles he takes,… Continue reading The Lincoln Lawyer – review
Embedded is Abnett’s second independent novel for Angry Robot Books and one of the most original and compelling SF stories I’ve read in quite some time. In fact, I’m drawn to a grossly overused cliché to describe my experience because it happens to be, well, true: I couldn’t put the damn thing down!
When a movie could have been good, but wasn’t, it becomes an even worse movie experience than if there had been no expectation, no potential, for anything better. So it was with The Adjustment Bureau. This movie was like 30 Days of Night: it had everything going for it—unique premise, great cast, decent if not… Continue reading Adjusting the Adjustment Bureau
George R. R. Martin has us in Bran dreams in our reread this week and we are talking the heart of winter and other things We know nothing about.
Matthew Cheney meets Barbie Adventures as he continues his Sandman Meditations in A Game of You.
I’ve been meaning to review this little beauty for a while, so, straight to business. Iron Company was Chris Wraight’s first Black Library novel and yet somehow managed to tick almost all the boxes for Warhammer fantasy writing. As my first review for Boomtron made clear, this isn’t something to be taken for granted. Iron… Continue reading Iron Company by Chris Wraight – Review
At the end of volume one of Fumi Yoshinaga’s Ooku: The Inner Chambers, the Shogun Yoshimune asks an elderly monk to explain to her “the logic of the present custom” of using male honorifics and titles to refer to female nobles. After all, if women run the country while men are expected to do little… Continue reading Ooku: The Inner Chambers – Volume 5
Hal Duncan examines science fiction and fantasy as genre and literature and speculative fiction’s place in culture.
With the opening volumes of Ooku: The Inner Chambers, Fumi Yoshinaga attempts to answer the question of why it is that a culture’s values do not automatically keep step with its demographics. For example, why would a version of Edo-period Japan in which 75% of the male population had been wiped out by a terrible… Continue reading Ooku: The Inner Chambers – Volume 4
My burgeoning affiliation with the All New! All Different! Boomtron, with its Ooku reviews and its Sandman Meditations and its other various lovingly crafted commentaries, comes with the knowledge that I am lacking in … well, knowledge. And it isn’t even the sort of knowledge your average Jim-Bob on the street would see as significant. Unfortunately, it’s… Continue reading Show Me Your Lightning Bolt!
Even in a fantasy world we join forces in our Game of Thrones reread to hate anyone who kills our puppies.
Volume One of Fumi Yoshinaga’s Ooku: The Inner Chambers posed a question of both its world and ours. That question was why there is such a thing as gender inequality when gender inequality is so manifestly absurd. Yoshinaga asks this question by having her characters delve into the past of a fictional Edo-period Japan in… Continue reading Ooku: The Inner Chambers – Volume 3
Animal Kingdom is not a movie about the jungle but simply the law of the jungle: it’s kill or be killed, and only the strong survive. As the poster tagline claims, it is a crime story, about a crime family–the Cody’s–and what happens when their anchor, their leader, is killed. The main character is teenager… Continue reading Animal Kingdom | movie review
The notion of the sidekick has been a popular one in story-telling since time out of mind, yet it has most likely been brought to its highest prominence in superhero comics. The majority of these sidekicks, like Batman’s Robin, have been cheeky teenagers, created in order to act not only as foil for the hero,… Continue reading Run, Micro, Run
Sansa Stark sees the world of Westeros in a much different way as her siblings and we dive into her first POV of this reread of A Song of Ice and Fire.
The First Volume of Ooku: The Inner Chambers ends with the newly installed Shogun asking a question of an elderly monk. This question, though apparently simple, cuts straight to the heart of her kingdom, her culture, her history and her identity:
There’s an old Chinese curse that a lot of hacky writers use to set up the premises of their articles, and it is as follows: May you live in interesting times. And for stand-up comedy, these are very interesting times, indeed. This is not to say that stand-up is cursed. At least, it isn’t any… Continue reading A Glorious Waste of Time: Jordan Brady’s I Am Comic
The first Phonogram mini landed and people weren’t sure what to believe. Here was a comic about music that talked about lyrics and music instead of writing and art. It didn’t feature a cape in sight and it was black and white. It sat as almost the definition of an independent comic on the stands.… Continue reading Phonogram: Singles Club 4 – Konichiwa Bitches | Top Single Issues
0. A Statement of Subject and Method Fumi Yoshinaga’s Eisner Award-nominated and James Tiptree Jr. Award-winning series Ooku: The Inner Chambers is a multi-volume manga series set in an alternative version of Medieval Edo Period Japan in which a terrifying plague has wiped out 75% of the male population. Using this fictional event as a… Continue reading Ooku: The Inner Chambers – Volume 1 (2009)
Catelyn Stark does Catelyn Stark things and me and Elena just can’t in this chapter of our Game of Thrones reread.
Like Dante, I wasn’t even supposed to be there that day. The focus of all the attention was familiar: small waves of television and movie stars, wide-smiling studio execs, nervous-looking producers and show-runners, all surrounded by the usual mad gaggle of protectors, buffers, yes-men and desperate-eyed hangers-ons. Cameras flashed, smilers smiled, and the air was… Continue reading Too Cool (Or, how a moron ended up at the TCA’s)
Matthew Cheney visits Hell and Ragnarok following Gaiman in Season of Mists.
Hal Duncan on how strange Gareth Edwards is.
Blue Valentine screened here at the NO Film Fest the same week Welcome to the Rileys, Black Swan, and 127 Hours did. I did not end up seeing it due to a prior engagement the night it screened, and so I watched the controversy about its rating–should it be NC17 or R, and if the… Continue reading Blue Valentine | movie review
The King’s Speech is a problematic movie for me. On the one hand, it’s a really great underdog story, the acting jobs were fabulous, and it’s a movie about hope in a time of darkness…but on the other hand is the history buff I know pointing out that he was hardly the only heroic figure… Continue reading The King’s Speech | movie review
Erin M. Evans takes a break from Forgotten Realms to bring you this.
I love them when they are dead I want some cold-blooded women lying in my bed I love you when you are dead – Batmobile, “Dead (I Want Them When They Are Dead)” At first you have to look closely to see her, but once you spot her, she’s hard to miss. In a field… Continue reading Dead Supermodels: The Photography Of Kaoru Izima | The Nail That Sticks Out
I almost didn’t go see this movie for three reasons: it was getting panned by Rotten Tomatoes (somewhere in the 20 percent’s when I checked, which is just shy of worst movie of the year numbers); acting opposite my boy Vince Vaughn was not Jon Favreau as I had thought from a half-watched preview but… Continue reading The Dilemma | movie review
At last, the holy grail of Warhammer 40k fans the world over has arrived–a 40k movie! Penned by the master himself, Dan Abnett, produced by Codex Pictures and directed by Martyn Pick, it tells a quintessential 40k tale from the perspective of the Space Marine golden boys, the Ultramarines. Special mention must go the voice… Continue reading Ultramarines: A Warhammer 40,000 Movie | Review
True Grit is the latest movie from the Coen brothers, and their best since No Country for Old Men. It convinces me that they should stick to movies that are not comedic in structure but simply in tone; this is a revenge story layered with dark humor, but the characters and the situations are always,… Continue reading True Grit | movie review