James Cameron’s Story Of Science Fiction is a solid, albeit navel-gazing, primer

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When AMC announced its new pop culture docuseries, Visionaries, at the Television Critics Association 2017 summer press tour, the network made it clear that these explorations of genres and media would be informative, but informal—expansive, but specific to whatever prominent filmmaker or producer was at the helm of a…

Bear with us: Arnold from Predator and Arnold from The Terminator are the same guy

In the cinematic lore of the Terminator franchise, it’s never made explicitly clear why the Skynet supercomputer decided to make the T-800 Model 101 look the way he looks. Was it simply the computer’s approximation of the ideal human form? Did Arnold Schwarzenegger, the actor-governor, exist in the world of the…

A slayer’s lineage: 9 pop cultural precursors to Buffy

When Buffy The Vampire Slayer debuted on The WB in 1997, it signaled a new direction for the fledgling netlet, a pivot toward audiences who could see themselves reflected in Buffy Summers and her Sunnydale High classmates. Of course, it’s the distinctions between Buffy and all previous TV teens that made all the…

How killing baby Hitler became a staple of time-travel stories

It’s a standard conversation starter at dinner parties everywhere: “What would you do if you had a time machine?” With “kill baby Hitler” being a frequently offered response. Overused as it is, the scenario still raises some moral, ethical, and practical issues. But how, exactly, did this particular baby-killing…

The Terminator makes Arnold a star—and changes action cinema forever

The 37-year-old Arnold Schwarzenegger was a human special effect. His physique was obviously just this side of inhuman, but it wasn’t just that. His face was hard and planar, all flat surfaces and sharp angles. He had a way of mangling English words, but his voice was authoritative and mysterious, and it seemed…

Enjoy this terrible fireworks packaging while it’s still technically legal

Backyard fireworks are simultaneously one of America’s greatest and worst traditions. Certainly, they’re an odd way to display patriotic pride. And, predictably, amateur fireworks displays send thousands of hapless Americans to the emergency room every July 4. As such, more communities are banning or severely limiting…

Innovative cheater uses augmented reality to solve a Rubik’s Cube

In retrospect, Arnold Schwarzenegger’s homicidal cyborg from The Terminator would have been great at solving Rubik’s Cubes, which were cresting in popularity at the time of his first movie. Not that he would have wasted his time on it, the killing of “Sar-uh Conn-uh” being his top priority, but he could easily have…

Stop-motion Batman vs. Terminator is better than Ben Affleck Batman vs. Superman

In his time, Batman has taken on a lot of different foes in various mediums. Whether it’s his eccentric rogue’s gallery, the Predator, or even some of his own allies. He’s even fought his own share of robots in the comics and animated series. But in comics, film, or TV, he’s probably never taken on as relentless an…

The Terminator-based “Hungry Like The Wolf” parody you seek has arrived

Everybody’s into two great ’80s tastes that taste great together, right? That’s the pitch behind this parody of Duran Duran’s “Hungry Like The Wolf” that has been re-made to center on the adventures of T-800 across the first two Terminator films. (Yes, Terminator 2: Judgment Day didn’t come out until 1991, but the…

Since reading’s for squares, here are some audiobooks of movie novelizations

Earlier this week, The A.V. Club reported on Wes Craven’s original draft for A Nightmare On Elm Street 3: Dream Warriors. It was of note that the novelization, released in 1987, was actually based on Craven’s draft, not the final script. This kind of thing happened all the time when tie-in novels of films were a…

Arnold Schwarzenegger made a video of every explosion from his films

It’s a fact: Arnold Schwarzenegger likes to blow shit up. Or at least, likes shit blowing up around him in his movies. Maybe it’s because he so often works with James Cameron, a man who also loves the spectacle of exploding destruction. But Schwarzenegger loves blowing stuff up so much that he’s doing it for charity,…

Montage of James Cameron’s films finds a man enamored of spectacle, destruction

Some people just want to watch the world burn, and then beautifully capture it on film. Before helming some of the biggest films of all time, James Cameron came up through the Roger Corman system working on models and art design for such films as Galaxy Of Terror and directing Piranha Part 2: The Spawning. He then…

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