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The Week in Geek: Kingdoms get hearts, birds prey, Dune gets a giant cast, and more
Another week, another collection of freezing, wintry conditions that everyone loves. Winter squalls rule! Just kidding — I want to die.
Anyway, let's talk about the news in the hopes that it'll help heat us back up in this, the literal winter of our discontent. Here they are, the five biggest stories from... The Week in Geek!
YOU CAN ACTUALLY PLAY KINGDOM HEARTS III
It is a truth universally acknowledged that a Disney fan in need of a new Kingdom Hearts game is s**t out of luck. It's been about 13 years since the second game in the series was released. And, yes, sure, fine, there have been ReMIXes and re-releases galore, but Kingdom Hearts III? That's never gonna happen.
Just kidding. It's out now. 2019 is the year that sets us back on the path of righteousness. Although, yes, it is true, that new Disney RPG from SquareEnix does jokingly call itself Kingdom Hearts II.9 in its opening title.
But, yes, Sora and his two dads, Donald Duck and Goofy (who is not a duck), are off on a new adventure in which you look for Mickey Mouse symbols and also fight evil. Kingdom Hearts is as frenetic and simultaneously easy and impossible as you remember.
And if you never played Kingdom Hearts before and hears the plot is incomprehensible so you feel like you can't play it? Don't worry! There's a "Kingdom Hearts Memory Archive" that's available both in-game and on YouTube. So if you don't know what a keyblade is, you'll probably be fine.
Anyway, now we can go back to making "when will the remake Final Fantasy VII game come out" comments.
THE BIRDS OF PREY ARE SUCH TEASES
Usually, a movie requires an actual trailer to get people excited, even if said movie is part of a storied franchise. Yet, oddly, the Bird of Prey movie, which will introduce characters we haven't ever seen movie live-action versions of before, has got people frothing at the mouth.
Mostly, I'd like to think the excitement is due to Margot Robbie wearing a costume made from what appear to be mylar balloon strings, but who knows! As the DCEU continues its "we're fun now" tour after the release of Aquaman, it kind of makes sense that Harley Quinn's latest outing makes her look like a '90s party girl who does super cool murders.
If you do not blink at all while watching the teaser, you will also see Elizabeth Winstead as Huntress, Jurnee Smollett-Bell as Black Canary, Rosie Perez as Renee Montoya, and a ton of others, too.
Yes, it looks like the first couple of seconds of a late 2000s music video. Yes, Birds of Prey is still a year away. But, gosh darn it all, it just feels good that the DCEU has shared another glimpse at a movie that doesn't star Superman's CGI upper lip.
DUNE IS GONNA STAR EVERYONE, I GUESS
Frank Herbert's Dune is one of those book series that everyone knows about even though most of those same people have not read a single word. You probably have watched at least one cut of the bizarre movie adaptation. The phrase "the spice must flow" has probably passed through your very sarcastic lips. You probably wistfully think about what Alejandro Jodorowsky would've done with Dune.
We are, culturally, wrapped up in that dang spice flow. Is it the effortless combination of Sting and Sir Patrick Stewart that make this obsession possible? Who can say for sure? But we do care about Dune, even when we don't.
People definitely care about Dune this week, though, because some casting announcements have been made and some rumors are also out there. Timothée Chalamet will play sweet-baby-boy-who-has-to-save-the-universe-probably Paul Atreides. Oscar Isaac is playing Duke Leto Atreides, which basically guarantees that I will see this new movie. But also there's Dave Bautista, Stellan Skarsgård, and Rebecca Ferguson.
And also Zendaya. Maybe. The rumor is that she will play Chani. And that's fairly exciting. People like Zendaya. She can be both a Mary Jane Watson-type and a lady who flies around on ropes in weird musicals about P.T. Barnum type. She's got layers! And she appeals to the youths. Imagine a Dune that the youths will watch! Amazing. 2019 is a wild year.
THE DARK UNIVERSE GOES INVISIBLE
Hi. Remember that time our parent company, NBC Universal, decided to announce "Dark Universe?" Do you remember this? Tom Cruise was about to star in a new The Mummy movie and so there was a big photo shoot put together with him and Javier Bardem and Johnny Depp and others to introduce a shared-universe of monster movies. What a huge deal! What a bold move! What trendsetters!
Just kidding, The Mummy flopped and it was eventually announced that The Dark Universe is no more. C'est la vie.
The good news is that abandoning the idea of making a bunch of horror movies intersect (without the aide of Abbott or Costello, which is the real reason the whole enterprise was doomed from the start, frankly) means that, instead, we're just going to get regular horror movies. And that is fine and good.
The first movie we're getting will be a new take on The Invisible Man. Leigh Whannell, who co-created both the Saw and Insidious franchises, is set to direct. So that also means Jason Blum from Blumhouse will produce. And it also means that Johnny Depp won't be the star anymore.
So, good news all around, basically. It's been a little while since a good Invisible Man movie came out. There have certainly been interesting ones, including Hollow Man and Chevy Chase's magnum opus, Confessions of an Invisible Man, but a good one? Nah.
And yet, suddenly being invisible does seem fantastic but also harrowing. It's a kind of body horror that really does deserve some exploration. And considering Bird Box was successful despite having monsters we never see, it feels like there's fertile ground in telling that story from the vantage point of the invisible person/monster themselves. We'll see!
JAMES GUNN IS DIRECTING THE SUICIDE SQUAD SEQUEL
Well, well, well. 2019. You keep outdoing yourself. This week it was announced that, in addition to scripting a reboot (after only one movie) of the Suicide Squad franchise, James Gunn will also be taking a seat in the director's chair. Is that a surprise? A little. Is it vindication after being fired from Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 over some old tweets? Maybe.;
It is, however, 100 percent a continuation of the DCEU reinvention machine. We already know (insofar as we can know something about a movie that hasn't been cast yet) that this new Suicide Squad movie will be a departure from the 2016 entry. Most of the actors/characters will probably not return. And that's... fine, honestly? The 2016 Suicide Squad movie is one of those films that technically made a lot of money but also has an absolutely horrific word of mouth. Most people you'll talk to despise it even if they've never seen it! There are legendary take-downs of its shoddy editing.
Also Margot Robbie complained a lot about those uncomfortable looking hotpants (not sure who thought those were a good idea), and that's why we're getting mylar balloon tops instead and also a new movie directed by the guy who made an old, blue space pirate calling himself Mary Poppins the funniest and most beautiful thing in the history of recorded cinema.
And that's it. Your week in geek is finished. Go in peace. Let us know what stories got you all hot and bothered under the collar in the comments and we'll see you back here again next week.