Grunting at the Screen (233)

17 Jun

The information age isn’t finished with us.


Biopunk snuck past me, it has already got a trailer before I knew it was in production.

What we know: well it not cyberpunk obviously. We have a summary. The world has been devastated by a virus, leaving some people as Altered (capital letter),

this new underclass has been relegated to the ghettos, when an Altered named Resha discovers her brother kidnapped she must venture beyond the city to find him before he is turned into a weapon (oh, that kind of Altered).

Here is the trailer;


The reason this slipped beneath my radar was likely that it was Kickstarted and so many of those projects end up languishing. What we don’t know is if this just the Kickstarter concept trailer or if they have actually done some principle photography.

It is directed by Liam Garvo.

No release information.


WTF? Filming has wrapped on Terry Gilliam’s The Man Who Killed Don Quixote. Yes, Seventeen years in the making the film that would not die and yet struggled to live is in the can

I didn’t report on it because, well like many other people, I had totally lost faith. I never thought he’d finish it.

Adam Driver and Jonathan Pryce are starring, screenplay is by Gilliam and Tony Grisoni. And they got some of that sweet, sweet streaming cash from Amazon Studios.

No word on the release date.


What’s Neill Blomkamp doing? Update

Blomkamp has given an interview with the Verge and he is clarifying his future plans…

He is indeed proceeding with Oats Studio, his personal production facility, it is an all-service studio developing scripts, creating physical effects, digital effects, casting and filming.

Interesting thing is that it is not focussed on features, or even necessarily on traditional short films. He wants to produce sketches; visual ideas which may form the basis for future shorts or features. Yes there will be short films, in fact Oats studio will launch with at least one, but it will publish fragments of footage and even digital files for fans to recut, re-render and turn into their own versions. This explains why Blomkamp chose to release Oats through Steam.

The second Oats trailer is more interesting:



In the meantime he has not given up on making feature films, he is still working on adapting Thomas Sweterlitsch’s novel The Gone World. Sweterlitsch is writing the screenplay and Fox is apparently still interested in making it.


Of course the world is still interested in a sequel to his debut feature District 9, and yes, he is interest in making one; just not right now.



Breaking news.

Neill Blomkamp’s Oats Studios has released its first product.

Rakka, an alien invasion short.

I have had a little peek, it is set in Blomkamp’s usual “scuzzyverse”: you know the same location as District 9, Elysium and Chappie; decaying housing, dust, and detritus.

I have to apologise if I suggested that it might be a rip-off…er loving homage to Alien. No, it’s a Terminator rip off, with tarry lizard aliens instead of unstoppable killer robots. I have some strong evocations of the future war sequences of the first Terminator; humans living in squalor while learning to fight an implacable enemy who outguns them.

Oats Studios is supposed to be the place where Blomkamp explores the more experimental side. I have to say Rakka is on the less experimental end of “experimental”, it’s a new-ish take on the Alien Invasion trope.

That’s OK, even pioneers need to make money.




We’ve been covering Tommy Wirkola’s Seven Sisters for some time.

Some are calling it cyberpunk. Hme, not according to its summary.

Maybe the poster is giving people ideas,

Anyway it has a release date… in France!

In the rest of the world it is anyone’s guess.

Seven Sisters will open in France in August.

What the heck, here’s a trailer.

Looks like a generic near-future setting to me.



We are hearing about South Korean science-fiction film “A Day”; a man becomes stuck in a time-loop while trying to save his daughter.

Director is Cho Sun-ho.

It gets a Korean release on June 15.

No international release information as of yet.




Now here’s an interesting thing; Happy Death Day. It’s labelled horror but is actually something very familiar to us.

A college student relives the day of her death noticing every detail until she can identify her killer.

Yes, it is another time–loop thriller and these come in all flavours and budgets. The sub-genre has most recently been identified with Edge of Tomorrow and Source Code.

Director is Christopher Landon who co-wrote it with Scott Lobdell, Oh yes, it is a Blumhouse film.

Due for release October 13, 2017


We’ve been covering Wesley Snipes’ Final Recall ever since Grunting (204), of course back then it was called The Recall; it is the standard ‘cabin by the lake’ scenario: five young people go to a cabin by the lake (now why would they do that?) of course this does not go too well for them.

In this case it is not a blade-wielding maniac that does for them but an alien invasion.

Well we now have a release it will be available for digital download from August 14th, and then on disk from the 21st.



Something interesting is happening with Bong Joon-ho’s Okja. Korean cinema chains are banning it.

Because Netflix plans to release the film simultaneously on streaming and theatrical formats, distributors are afraid it will not make much in the way of box office.

This is a problem Netflix have come up against before with Beast of No nation. But this time it is with one of Korea’s biggest and most respected film makers.

It bodes ill for future Netflix theatrical ventures.



Do you watch web video? I don’t watch web video. You know anyone who does? Actually I don’t really want to know. But I was looking at my file with the web series documents in it and I couldn’t remember anything about them, I certainly hadn’t seen any of them. OK, there is web video I go after aggressively and it is Adam Savage’s Tested clips on YouTube. I’ve linked a couple of them on Grunt, but I actually watch many more, I like to watch him making things. Anyway my point is, if you are a film maker who wanted to transition into Television or a theatrical release the last place you would go is a Web series. Heck even those short film guess have better luck. Hell, even if you make video games you have a better chance of making a feature film…









I’m Jack Eris and if you know me, you know Jack.






And if you want some real movie news you know what to do.


And if you want to walk the wild side of genre video, try Starburst’s review section


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