Tag: ready player one
Steven Spielberg’s Ready Player One heads to Blu-ray and DVD next Tuesday (available on streaming/digital services now), based on Ernest Cline’s novel of the same name, and this is going to be a must-have for anyone who has grown up in the video game culture that started in the 70s with the original Atari Video Computer System (a.k.a. Atari 2600) – which, by the way, figures prominently in the movie…
Despite the era of nostalgia, the movie itself is set in the near future, after events have resulted in many locations becoming slums. To escape, almost everyone takes part in a massively multiplayer virtual reality environment called OASIS, co-created by James Halliday (Mark Rylance) and Ogden Morrow (Simon Pegg). Many take the game VERY seriously – losing in the game results in losing their in-game characters, called being “zeroed out” and leads to suicides in some cases. People spend a lot of real money to enhance their in-game experience, such as full-body feedback outfits, 360-degree treadmills, etc.
When Halliday passes away (Morrow left the company), he wills control of OASIS to be given to the one who finds an in-game Easter Egg, which can only be obtained by completing three different game quests to obtain one of three different keys. Wade Watts (Tye Sheridan, X-Men: Apocalypse), a 17-year-old orphan living with his aunt in the “Stacks”, shoddily-built vertical trailer parks, known in OASIS as Parzival, teams up with his on-line friend Aech (Lena Waithe, Master of None) to take on the first quest, a race through a city with many obstacles, to find the key before other “gunters” – easter egg hunters – find it first, including an army of players from the Innovative Online Industries (IOI), a corporation who wants to take over the OASIS and use it to sell marketing to the players, and will stop at nothing to do so. He also befriends Art3mis (Olivia Cooke, Me and Earl and the Dying Girl), a famous gunter, along with Sho (Philip Zhao) and Daito (Win Morisaki), to form the “High Five” and team up in the quests.
Also appearing (at least in voice) are T.J. Miller (Deadpool), who’s voice provides a nice counter to the apparent rugged bounty hunter person of i-R0k; Ben Mendelsohn (Animal Kingdom) as Nolan Sorrento, the CEO of IOI; and Hannah John-Kamen (Killjoys, Ant-Man and the Wasp) as F’Nale Zandor, a real-world IOI operative hunting down the High Five.
While the plot is somewhat basic and predictable, it’s the visuals and references that are really interesting. I at first thought that this was going to be too CGI-centric and a distraction, but after a bit it felt natural in a weird way. And there are some stunning recreations, like the parts from The Shining). But what really hooked me was all the little things, both overt and background, that referenced the things we grew up with. From the many characters that can be seen in the background to the appearance of the Iron Giant (although, as some point out, misused), to the various Atari games and more. There are so many it will take multiple viewings to spot many of them – finding easter eggs in a movie about finding easter eggs!!! I saw a Colecovision towards the end…and I want Halliday’s t-shirts!
If you are particularly interested in motion-capture acting as well, check out the special features to see how a lot of it was done – there is just as much live acting, if not more!
Overall, it was a very enjoyable movie with some laugh-out-loud moments and plenty of “did-you-see-that”s as well!
Join an immersive virtual universe when Ready Player One arrives on 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray 3D Combo Pack, Blu-ray Combo Pack, DVD and Digital HD. From Warner Bros. Pictures, Amblin Entertainment and Village Roadshow Pictures, along with filmmaker Steven Spielberg, comes the action adventure Ready Player One, based on Ernest Cline’s bestseller of the same name, which has become a worldwide phenomenon.
Ready Player One stars Tye Sheridan (“X-Men: Apocalypse,” “Mud”), Olivia Cooke (“Me and Earl and the Dying Girl,” TV’s “Bates Motel”) and Ben Mendelsohn (“Rogue One – A Star Wars Story,” TV’s “Bloodline”). The ensemble cast also includes Lena Waithe (TV’s “Master of None”), T.J. Miller (“Deadpool,” TV’s “Silicon Valley”), Philip Zhao, Win Morisaki, Hannah John-Kamen (“Star Wars: The Force Awakens”), Simon Pegg (the “Star Trek” and “Mission: Impossible” movies) and Oscar® winner Mark Rylance (“Bridge of Spies,” “Dunkirk”).
Three-time Oscar® winner Spielberg* directed the film from a screenplay by Zak Penn and Ernest Cline. It is based on the novel by Cline, which has now spent more than 100 weeks on The New York Times Best Sellers List, recently climbing to the No. 1 spot, as well as reaching No. 1 on Amazon’s Most Read Fiction chart. Ready Player One was produced by Donald De Line, Kristie Macosko Krieger, Steven Spielberg and Dan Farah. Adam Somner, Daniel Lupi, Chris deFaria and Bruce Berman served as executive producers.
Tidbits: Daredevil and Krypton cast; Ready Player One date; The Greatest American Hero pilot; Nightflyers boost
I am once again trying to play catch up, so here is a rundown of the last several days worth of news…
On the casting side, Syfy’s Superman prequel Krypton has signed Hannah Waddingham (How to Lose Friends & Alienate People) as Jax-Ur, once one of Kypton’s eminent scientists turned leader of the terrorist group Black Zero. An interesting choice, as the character has traditionally been portrayed as a male.
On the opposite side of the comic world, Marvel and Netflix’s Daredevil added Joanne Whalley (Willow), in an unspecified role. However, the finale of The Defenders made mention of a “Maggie” who is believed to be Sister Maggie, a character in the comic series who is in fact Matt Murdock’s mother who left her family to become a nun, and return to nurse her son back to health.
The much anticipated Ready Player One will open a day earlier than originally scheduled. Instead of opening on Good Friday, March 30th, of the Easter weekend it will now open on the Thursday, March 29th. Thursday openings for big movies is becoming more common…based on the 2011 SF novel, the story is set in a near-future dystopian society, in which teenager Wade Watts enters a virtual reality game to look for the game’s “easter egg” which could net him wealth – but there are those willing to kill to stop him.
ABC has ordered a pilot for the remake of The Greatest American Hero with a put commitment (ABC will at a minimum air the pilot as a special/TV movie, or pay a penalty). This version centers around a tequila and karaoke-loving 30-year-old Indian-American woman who becomes entrusted with a suit that gives her the power to protect the planet – but it doesn’t work out so well. Cast has yet to be named. This is the first collaboration between 20th Century Fox Studios and ABC, who are set to become siblings. Fox and ABC studios are co-producing with Fresh Off the Boat‘s Rachna Fruchbom and Nahnatchka Khan’s Fierce Baby.
Lastly, the Irish Film Board just gave a huge boost to the production of George R.R. Martin’s Nightflyers, which will be filming at Troy Studios in Limerick, Ireland. The board granted €850,000 (about $1.1 million) to the production, which is the largest such award in the current funding cycle. Syfy ordered the 10-episode series earlier this month from Universal Cable Productions, with Netflix on board for international distribution.
Director Steven Spielberg will return to film a movie for Warner Bros after a 14 year absence…he is taking the reins of Ready Player One, based on the popular novel by Ernest Cline. Spielberg’s last movie for the studio was A.I.: Artificial Intelligence
The story takes place in 2044, and Wade Watts, a young gamer, seeks to unravel the clues left within the massive game universe of Oasis, which the late creator left as a challenge to find someone worthy of of taking over his estate – including the corporation and the game itself. When Watts closes in on the first clue, he discovers that others are willing to kill for it…
Zac Penn is writing the script, after it was started by Cline and Eric Eason (A Better Life).