Archive for the ‘movies’ Category

Harlan Ellison, time troll

Harlan Ellison is the patent troll of sci-fi stories about time. I mean that in a good way. I respect Ellison’s tough-minded approach to idea theft, particularly towards Hollywood, where ten people in a room can come up short when looking for one original idea.

I previously wrote about episodes of Outer Limits that Ellison successfully claimed were the idea for the movie Terminator. (Successful in that he has a credit on the movie now and a sealed court settlement.) The Hollywood Reporter reports on his newest effort to protect his intellectual property, this time against “In Time,” a film set to release on Oct. 28:

Science fiction legend Harlan Ellison is attempting to kill a high-profile movie that is scheduled to come out in theaters next month. The Hugo award-winning writer has filed a lawsuit against New Regency and director Andrew Niccol over the 20th Century Fox-distributed film, In Time, starring Justin Timberlake, Amanda Seyfried and Cillian Murphy.

via Harlan Ellison Sues Claiming Fox’s ‘In Time’ Rips Off Sci-Fi Story (Exclusive) – Hollywood Reporter.

The story he alleges was infringed features one of his all-time great titles: “Repent, Harlequin! Said The Ticktockman.”

Tinker, tailor, soldier, spy

“Tinker, Tailor, Solider, Spy” is one of the great twisty spy thrillers, about thinking and betrayal rather than booms and bangs. I was worried a new version would pale in comparison to the British mini-series, or die on the vine of period-piece dustiness. Not so, says this first review, from THR. I can’t wait to see it.

Huge on period atmosphere and as murkily plotted as its source material, this big-scale European adaptation of John le Carré’s 1974 Cold War novel Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy shows a faithfulness that should fully meet the expectations of the writer’s fans. At the same time, with Swedish director Tomas Alfredson at the helm of his first English language film, one might be pardoned for hoping for a bit of the spookiness of his Let the Right One In or the political passion of le Carré’s The Constant Gardener. Instead this good, old-fashioned square-off between spymasters Karla and George Smiley demonstrates a lot more loyalty than most of its characters. It is one of the few films so visually absorbing, felicitous shot after shot, that its emotional coldness is noticed only at the end, when all the plot twists are unraveled in a solid piece of thinking-man’s entertainment for upmarket thriller audiences.

via Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy: Venice Film Review – The Hollywood Reporter.