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WIRE Buzz: Arrow spinoff details revealed; Grudge reboot and Dracula reviews
The CW has released an official description of the backdoor pilot for its upcoming (and currently untitled) Arrow spinoff, Deadline has confirmed. Titled “Green Arrow and the Canaries," the sneaky pilot will serve as the penultimate episode of Arrow's eighth and final season on Tuesday, January 21.
Here is the synopsis:
It’s the year 2040 in Star City and Mia Queen [Katherine McNamara] has everything she could have ever wanted. However, when Laurel [Katie Cassidy] and Dinah [Juliana Harkavy] suddenly show up in her life again, things take a shocking turn and her perfect world is upended. Laurel and Dinah are tracking a kidnapping victim with direct ties to Mia and they need her help. Knowing it will change everything, Mia can’t help but be a hero and she, Laurel and Dinah suit up once again to save the city.
Tara Miele — a vet of Seasons 6 and 7 — directed the episode, which was written by Beth Schwartz, Marc Guggenheim, Jill Blankenship, and Oscar Balderrama. The description seems to confirm that current Arrow alums McNamara and Cassidy will continue to factor into the future-set pitch, as fans have already seen a lot of this world thanks to flash-forwards over the past two seasons.
Sony's highly publicized reboot of The Grudge is now in theaters, but is this updated take on the iconic Ju-On horror films from Japan worth your time? The critical consensus isn't very promising.
"Only at the very end do a couple of plot elements really click together as they're supposed to," writes John DeFore of The Hollywood Reporter. "But while these make a climactic scene work reasonably well, they don't come anywhere near making a viewer want the sequel the film's producers clearly have in mind. At the turn of the century, movies like Ju-On and Ringu felt simultaneously timely and ancient. Now, each new invocation of their names feels cheaper than the last."
The fourth Americanized Grudge film since 2004, the reboot was written and directed by Nicolas Pesce (Piercing). Produced by Sam Raimi (The Evil Dead, Spider-Man 2), the movie stars Andrea Riseborough, Demián Bichir, John Cho, Betty Gilpin, Lin Shaye, and Jacki Weaver.
"The J-horror mood, of course, is no longer new or adventurous. It long ago infiltrated the megaplex, and was more or less played out by the time the sequel to the American version of The Ring arrived in 2005," says Variety's Owen Glieberman. "The Grudge plods on as if it were something more than formula gunk, cutting back and forth among the thinly written unfortunates who’ve been touched by the curse of that house."
A 17 percent currently on Rotten Tomatoes doesn't do any favors for the new release.
The final trailer for Steven Moffat and Mark Gattis' live-action Dracula TV series is here, but you'll have to properly invite it into your own home first.
Vampire rules are vampire rules.
"Everything you need is here. A dark, unmappable, labyrinthine castle. Gnarled hands resting on balcony ledges, their unseen owner lurking in shadowy recesses. Terrified locals. Bats. Babies crying. Primal fears inescapably roused," writes Lucy Mangan of The Guardian in her five-star review of the gothic horror series.
"It feels like a passion project for the creators, especially Gatiss, who has a well-documented love of horror," says Ed Cumming of The Independent. "This rollicking enthusiasm carries Dracula along, and we ignore the odd dodgy special effect that makes it feel like a gothic Doctor Who. None of it makes sense, but there’s a reason these vampires live for such a long time."
Gattis, John Heffernan, Morfydd Clark, Dolly Wells, Sarah Niles, Matthew Beard, Chanel Cresswell, Lyndsey Marshal, Clive Russell, Joanna Scanlan, Jonathan Aris, Sacha Dhawan, Nathan Stewart-Jarrett, Catherine Schell, and Youssef Kerkour co-star on the show.
Season 1 of Dracula (really just three episodes) drops on Netflix tomorrow, Saturday, January 4.