When Crunch does a collaboration we never know what to expect, beside a good time. They are infamous for creating a judgment free environment while keeping guest entertained and toned! This new and electrifying collaboration is nothing short of that.
Yes New York, it’s that time of year where people start planning for the next holiday, Labor Day. Every year you do the same humdrum thing, a family BBQ or a day at the beach. Don’t get me wrong we love a good BBQ along with a nice beach day however it may be time to spice things up a bit. [Read more…] about Get out of Manhattan and Spend Your Labor Day with Mohegan Sun!
There, I said it. We’re all thinking it. Or perhaps, when in fact studying the craft that is designing a film trailer nowadays, in all their ostentatious glory – perhaps movie trailer teasers are in fact the new black. And then all the young boys and girls of a certain sort stand proudly and truculently in their not-so-common Storm Trooper costumes and meticulously crafted Elven ears and say Nay! – it is not the teasers of said trailers which are the new shade of popular, oh no. It is in fact the teasers of teasers which are just the greatest thing ever!
A long time ago, in a Hollywood now far, far away, the only hint of a plot to upcoming films was a poster. And it was usually hand-drawn. Imagine a let down of that magnitude in today’s viral campaign-mongering and hashtag-driven world of foreshadowing wonder. It would be madness, I tell you, madness!
Here is where one would cue the brass-heavy rousing film score.
While dramatic to an extent, there is in fact an aspect of truth to the idea that movie trailers can sell or destroy today’s major motion pictures. Along with the special-effects and the plot twists and the acting techniques which have adapted and grown to a higher standard as the years have gone by, the previews to our films have also significantly risen in quality. It’s very easy to compare the compelling appeal of movie trailers today to those of yesteryear, thanks heavily in part to the accessibility of YouTube and modern-day archive resources at a whim.
Case and point, here’s the official trailer from the original 1954 version of GODZILLA:
And then watch this one, from the 2014 film reboot:
And lastly, just for the overall nerdy fuck of it, check out this mashup of the old with the new. The style alone brings a new element to the old trailer which makes it appealing, even today.
So why do we love movie previews so damn much? Well, part of it has to do with the fact that we are able to spread them like wildfire. Back when films were a thing of luxury, in black and white glory and magnificent faux sets, the only group of people who saw the previews to the next big film were the ones in the theater. Jump-cut to today when movie trailers are premiered on the internet before they even make their debuts in theaters.
This past Thanksgiving two very large movie trailers made an appearance in theaters. How do I know? Well because they first landed on YouTube, before they appeared anywhere else. Was this effective? You be the judge: The film trailer for Jurassic World was posted on YouTube on November 25th. As of the time of the publishing of this article, it has been viewed 41,077,141 times. Yes, that’s forty-one million. And counting. On November 28th, the trailer for Star Wars: The Force Awakens was posted on YouTube. Today it has 42,193,847 views.
Have you seen these trailers? If not, check them out here:
And with all this being said and watched, how many times do we fall victim to the ever-present masterpiece trailer, only to be followed by the monumentally disappointing actual film? We’re looking at you, Superman Returns. It’s true, the foreplay does not always result in a fantastic finish.
So what’s next? If movie trailer teaser teasers are the rage, what could possibly top them?
Easy. Movie trailer teaser teaser parodies for the win.
Which film trailers are your favorite? Which ones were better than the actual film?
It’s early December, and that means that many of our favorites are either wrapping up for the year, or in the case of our longer running broadcast shows, taking some time off so that people can go forth and enjoy their holiday parties, kids can watch some old favorites with their parents, and reviewers like myself can write best-of lists in November and completely mail in the last two weeks of the year.
This inter-season has become the six weeks on the schedule that become the most volatile. NBC loves to sneak a patch series or two in there (this year it’s the return of The Sing Off), some cable networks might try to sneak in an event series to keep it’s scheduling even while series slowly go into reruns (TNT’s Mob City is a great example), but generally it’s about the return of some of your fondest childhood memories (I personally will watch the Charlie Brown special somewhere in the ballpark of 20 times between now and Christmas, and will likely watch A Christmas Story at least twice when it airs during it’s annual marathon on Christmas Eve on TBS).
It’s also a time of year where one can find a ton of sports programming if you’re into that sort of thing. College bowl season roars into full blown frenzy by the middle of the month, there’s typically an all day basketball smorgasbord over the course of Christmas Day. If you’re a hockey fan, the last week of the calendar year never fails to provide juicy match-ups, as local rivals face off in the NHL’s attempt to keep teams as close to home as possible for the holidays.
As for me? I’ll be catching up on Netflix with the shows I’ve wanted to get into but missed due to focusing on whatever Bravo or E! dreck happens to be on the air. I view it as a Christmas gift to myself to catch up on as much Bob’s Burgers and It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia as humanly possible while trying to figure out exactly what the appeal of egg nog is anyway.
So enjoy your holidays, a nice time to slow down and catch up with friends and family, because this year mid-season is going to start surprisingly early with the return of NBC’s Community and it’s old showrunner Dan Harmon for it’s fifth season (mid-season needs to start a little early for the peacock as it loses two weeks of schedule to the Sochi Olympics).
Next Time: We start looking back at 2013 over the next couple of weeks, whether it’s the best or the worst, the biggest stories, and the shows that we can stuff in a time capsule as the best representation of the year in pop culture. In the meantime, we all here at Manhattan Digest wish you a happy, healthy, holiday season!
Let me get something out of the way before I get into the meat of this article:
I have not played Pokemon X or Y yet.
I know, I know, it’s sacrilege for me to say that. However, my retail job and general lack of hours there prevent me from getting a 3DS or 2DS and the game. Simply not enough money to go around. Anyway, having talked to friends and family members about the recent installments in the Pokemon franchise it’s obvious to me that the buzz that surrounded the games way back in 1998 has finally returned 15 years later.
Everything I’ve heard about the general storyline of X and Y seems like typical Pokemon fare; you’re a new trainer embarking on your journey to become a Pokemon master, there’s an evil team wanting to change the world in some form for their benefit, you take on gym leaders and the Elite Four, and there are many legendary Pokemon, whether related to the story or not, to capture. The standard endgame is there, with more challenging battles to take on and side quests to complete. However, that’s where the similarities to the last three generations end.
The features that Gamefreak has added to X and Y are things that match the spirit of the game perfectly. Gamefreak has finally added full character customization, allowing you to buy outfits and change your trainer’s hair with in-game currency. You can now use the game’s Wonder Trade function to instantly send one of your Pokemon to another trainer anywhere in the world. While you have no control over the Pokemon you receive in return, it’s perfect for those who don’t have friends to play and trade with. You can also use the Player Search System to battle other trainers worldwide. For the hardcore gamers, you can now “Super Train” your Pokemon to max their EVs (effort values) quicker, gaining bigger stat boosts in a short period of time. The new Pokemon-Amie (pictured below) allows you to develop stronger bonds with your Pokemon, using the bottom touchscreen to pet, feed, and play with them. You can benefit in battle by raising your Pokemon’s affection, as another new feature involves your Pokemon trying harder in battle for you. They can gain a higher critical-hit ratio, dodge attacks, and gain more experience. Gamefreak even added a chance that your Pokemon will shake off status ailments or endure attacks that would otherwise knock them out because they don’t want to disappoint you. As someone who always ends up developing emotional bonds with his team, I can say that for me, these features are very much welcome.
These changes are a breath of fresh air that has been sorely needed as the last few generations of games have felt flat, in my opinion. I recently played through Pokemon Black 2 and felt that there was no challenge to the game at all; I played from start to finish without losing a single battle. Also, the new Pokemon introduced ranged from somewhat refreshing to completely moronic in terms of design. There were new Pokemon in that generation based on ice cream and piles of garbage; the mark of a company that had run out of ideas. This time around, I’m glad that the lion’s share of the effort went to adding cogs and gears as opposed to flashy new Pokemon. Pokemon X and Y marks the fewest additions to the series in terms of number of Pokemon, with only 69 newbies bringing the overall total to 718 species of catchable allies.
I’m sure that come Christmas time, I’ll be able to get my hands on this game, and I can safely say that this is the first time I’ve badly wanted a Pokemon game since Pokemon Crystal came out in 2001. Until then, I’ll be forced to listen to my friends proclaim that this new batch of Pokemon games is the best in a long time, and wind up jealous of them as a result. However, one thing is clear: this franchise is back, and it’s back in a big way. Gamefreak has proven that you can indeed catch lightning in a bottle twice with the same IP.
The Tribeca Film Festival is back to grace us with some awesome movie selections for everyone to check out from April 17th – 28th. This is the 12th year the film festival will return to lower Manhattan and if you can snag some tickets to any films make sure you do so ASAP because screenings are selling out as we speak. Some of the highly anticipated films this year are Julie Delpy’s Before Midnight (The sequeal to her films Before Sunrise and Before Sunset), Adult World (starring Emma Roberts and directed by Scott Coffey), Flex is Kings (a doc focusing on Brooklyn’s “Flex” dance movement directed by Diedre Schoo and Michael Beach Nichols), and Big Bad Wolves (an Israeli serial killer flick where the killer may be the one killed directed by Navot Papushado and Aharon Keshales). The festival opens on Wednesday, April 17th, with the screening of Mistaken for Strangers which focuses on an indie band, The National, from Brooklyn.
If your cash is tight, or if you’d rather just chill out at home and avoid the crowds the Tribeca Film Festival has options for you to still take advantage of this New York tradition. People across the country will be allowed to access the Tribeca Online Festival and Tribeca Film’s on-demand offerings throughout the festival’s run this year. The Tribeca Online Festival will provide free streaming of the following seven films: Alias Ruby Blade: A Story of Love and Revolution, Lil Bug & Friendz ( For the cat lover in you!), Farah Goes Bang, and short films like RPG OKC, Delicacy, The Exit Room, and A Short Film About Guns. These films will all be accessible via tribecaonlinefestival.com and audiences can vote for their favorites with the winners receiving $16K in prize money. So all is not lost if you prefer to chill in the house and you’re sick of Netflix! You can easily check out the Tribeca Online Festival.
If you happen to be in the New York area, but are suffering from a lack of funds (aka ain’t nothing going on but the rent!) and want to get out and enjoy the recently arrived spring weather, the Tribeca Film Festival will be screening the following films for FREE for your enjoyment:
|Friday||4/19||8:00 PM||Tribeca Drive-In (World Financial CenterPlaza)||FREE|
|And The Band Played OnSaturday||4/27||3:30 PM||SVA Theater 1 Silas||FREE W/ TICKET|
Alberi (Short Film)
|Saturday||4/20||5:00 PM||MoMa PS1’s VW Dome||FREE|
|Thursday||4/18||8:00 PM||Tribeca Drive-In (World Financial CenterPlaza)||FREE|
Stand Clear of the Closing Doors
|Saturday||4/27||7:00 PM||MoMA PS1 Rockaway||FREE|
Lil Bub & Friendz
|Saturday||4/20||8:00 PM||Tribeca Drive-In (World Financial CenterPlaza)||FREE|
Hey, even if you do have cash why not save it for drinks at the bar after watching any of these free screenings! To check out the synopses for any of the films, buy tickets, and find directions to theaters or box offices please hit up Tribecafilm.com/festival.
Vatican Shadow: Ornamented Walls
Similar artists – Pete Swanson, Demdike Stare, Andy Stott, Ital
Genre – Noise Techno, Hipster House, Dark Ambient
Dominick Fernow has been a lead contributor to the highly prolific noise scene through his many aliases (most notably “Prurient”). As opposed to his peers in the genre, such as Wolf Eyes or Black Dice, Dominick’s music has always been more harsh, more disorienting, and certainly more damaging to the eardrums. This is an artist who is not kidding around. His music is relentless and unforgiving, and many of his tracks have featured high pitched alarms and sirens that scrape and gnaw at your mind for dozens of minutes on end. This most likely does not sound pleasant, and it certainly isn’t, but there is also a not-so-easy-to-write-down aspect of his music that is rewarding and addicting; mark my words, after you have listened to one of his releases you will want more.
His newest release compiles nine highlights from a new military inspired alias. These tracks were previously released as singles/EP’s on his own “Hospital Productions” label, but in this collection they are being put out through the much-loved, and very modern “Modern Love” label. If you haven’t heard of this label, dark might be one word to describe its output, but a more apt phrase would be suffocatingly bleak.
This release’s sound fits right alongside label mates “Andy Stott”, and to an even greater degree – Manchester’s, “Demdike Stare”. Both acts craft harrowing soundscapes out of buzz-saws and dozens of other non-musical entities, as well as embracing influences from various cultures. These sounds are conjoined to create a morphed, and entirely un-danceable form of ambient-leaning techno/house. The difference is that Vatican Shadow does this at higher on average, bpm than Demdike Stare. Still, many of Dominick Fernow’s previous releases have seemed to exist in a category all their own, and this one seems easy to corner in comparison.
One could also lump this into the newly cited “Hipster House” tag (meaning no disrespect), which speaks of techno/house music being created by artists pertaining to non-house backgrounds. Fellow noise brethren “Pete Swanson” recently made his first foray into the techno scene with the fantastic “Man with Potential”, and his results were similarly un-danceable. For these reasons, Ornamented Walls is somewhat more accessible and predictable when compared to his earlier material – although clearly not in the traditional sense of these words.
As I’ve stated before, this is a compilation, not an album. I mean this in the truest sense, as this release has no discernible flow, and the highlights are all front loaded. Here lies the release’s main flaw, as this leaves for a very uneven listening experience. Despite this complaint, Ornamented Walls remains a successful and well done direction for the artist. When the project gets a proper, fully developed full length it will be much more deserving of our attention.
1.) Operation Neptune Spear Part 1 (Live Rehearsal Mix)*
2.) Operation Neptune Spear Part 2 (Live Rehearsal Mix)*
3.) Operation Neptune Spear Part 3 (Live Rehearsal Mix)*
4.) Cairo is a Haunted City (Mythic Chords)
5.) Nightforce Scopes
6.) Yemeni Telephone Number
7.) India has just Tested a Nuclear Device
8.) Church of All Images (Church of the NSA)
9.) Boxes Were Wired to Batteries then Loaded into a Brown Toyota Cargo Truck
*- Album Highlight