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The Avengers 2 – Age of Ultron italian trailer and slideshow

avengers-age-of-ultronThe official italian trailer of Avengers – Age of Ultron, the long-awaited sequel of the highly-acclaimed 2012 movie. is finally available. The main plot this time centers around Ultron, who speaks and threats with the voice of the actor James Spader (Stargate, The Watcher, Crash): an evil Artificial Intelligence originally created (in the comic books) by Dr. Hank “Ant-Man” Pym, which in the theatrical version of the story will be the unexpected result of an experiment led by Tony Stark.

As far as we know the director Joss Whedon definitely wants to alter the mood of the project, and anyone who watched the trailer would hardly disagree: it really seems that this chapter’s gonna be a lot more darker than its predecessor.

The movie will make its debut in the italian theaters by April 22, 2015, one week earlier than United States where the premiere is set for May, 1.

Here’s the official synopsis from Marvel Studios and Walt Disney Pictures:

Marvel Studios presents Avengers: Age of Ultron, the epic follow-up to the biggest Super Hero movie of all time. When Tony Stark tries to jumpstart a dormant peacekeeping program, things go awry and Earth’s Mightiest Heroes, including Iron Man, Captain America, Thor, The Incredible Hulk, Black Widow and Hawkeye, are put to the ultimate test as the fate of the planet hangs in the balance. As the villainous Ultron emerges, it is up to The Avengers to stop him from enacting his terrible plans, and soon uneasy alliances and unexpected action pave the way for an epic and unique global adventure.

Marvel’s Avengers: Age of Ultron stars Robert Downey Jr., who returns as Iron Man, along with Chris Evans as Captain America, Chris Hemsworth as Thor and Mark Ruffalo as The Hulk. Together with Scarlett Johansson as Black Widow and Jeremy Renner as Hawkeye, and with the additional support of Samuel L. Jackson as Nick Fury and Cobie Smulders as Agent Maria Hill, the team must reassemble to defeat James Spader as Ultron, a terrifying technological villain hell – bent on human extinction. Along the way, they confront two mysterious and powerful newcomers, Wanda Maximoff, played by Elizabeth Olsen, and Pietro Maximoff, played by Aaron Taylor-Johnson, and meet an old friend in a new form when Paul Bettany becomes Vision.


FX puts an end to The Bridge

81jfR9OY2QL._SL1500_It seems like FX shutdown scythe will reap another victim by the end of the year. This time the short stick has been drawn by detectives Sonya Cross and Marco Ruiz, the two officers who brought to the US screens the adaptation of the Scandinavian crime-drama TV series The Bridge. The decision can be easily explained by watching the bad figures drawn by  the latest viewers and ratings reports.

We’re talking about a million of total viewers and a constantly decreasing rating who ultimately reached a tiny 0.3 in the 18-49 adults range. Sad numbers to say the least, even considering the modest competitors featured by other networks during the same timeframe: the show isn’t exactly healty, no doubt about it.

Those who liked the show style, mood and pace could always try to switch to the original series, which is still quite lively in the Scandinavian countries and also has a third season on its way. On the other hand, those who watched it only for the beautiful Diane Kruger will most likely have to move on.


Moana, the 2016 Disney movie project


There are only few weeks left before Big Hero 6 will hit the scenes, yet the Walt Disney Animation Studios are already looking ahead to their upcoming project Moana, which we’ll probably see in the late 2016. The Studios describes the movie as “a sweeping, CG-animated comedy-adventure about a spirited teenager on an impossible mission to fulfill her ancestors’ quest.” The filming will be held by two notable and very-well known Disney crafters, the Oscar-nominated duo of Ron Clements and John Musker , previously known for The Little MermaidAladdin, Hercules and The Princess and the FrogMoana will be their first attempt in a Computer Graphic animation project.

Official concept art. Click to enlarge. All images are © of Walt Disney Pictures.

The images you can see in this article are taken from the very first concept art available to the public. Here’s the movie official synopsis:

“In the ancient South Pacific world of Oceania, Moana, a born navigator, sets sail in search of a fabled island. During her incredible journey, she teams up with her hero, the legendary demi-god Maui, to traverse the open ocean on an action-packed voyage, encountering enormous sea creatures, breathtaking underworlds and ancient folklore.”


Ron Clements: “John and I have partnered on so many films—from The Little Mermaid to Aladdin to The Princess and the Frog,” said Clements in a statement. “Creating Moana is one of the great thrills of our career. It’s a big adventure set in this beautiful world of Oceania.”

John Musker“Moana is indomitable, passionate and a dreamer with a unique connection to the ocean itself. She’s the kind of character we all root for, and we can’t wait to introduce her to audiences.”


 NOTE: Images featured on this post are © of Walt Disney Pictures.

Sin City 2: A dame to kill for

Sin-City2-ALBA-poster-610x903It’s kinda hard to ignore movies like Sin City. The first chapter, almost ten years ago, found an effective way to capture the harsh and heavy visual language of the Frank Miller most effective work with ambitious, yet undoubtely brilliant, green screen techniques capable to charm the newcomers as much as the old school graphic-novel fans. Nonetheless the adaptation had its fair pack of issues, from the wayward, sometimes inconsistant filmmaking and storytelling (easily Rodriguez biggest flaw as a director) to the misleading overall mood, often jeopardized by the exact same comic-strip lines & dialogues which used to work so well before leaving their original form. Movies and comics ain’t working the same and Miller’s masterpiece, with all its heavy cinematographic roots, would’ve deserved a deeper approach: something much closer to the hard-boiled, old-fashioned noir movies than the action-packed, trope-driven yet enjoyable flick put togheter by the texas (chainsaw) director.


Ten years passed and Rodriguez isn’t showing any major change of route, filming a movie which ends up being very similar to its ancestor: a massive, stunning visual experience partially clouded by the continuous overflow of dialogues, monologues and jokes forced on screen by a literal adaptation who blatantly chases any single quote featured by the comic. As a viewer, I often felt the frustration of watching amazing scenes (Dwight and Marv breaking in Lord mansion and the epic clash between the latter and Manute, just to mention one) and having them ruined by an excessive usage of useless, pace-killing spoken sentences. But the graphic novel had them all, someone might say: that might be true for the most part, but the fine, hard-boiled loosening feeling crafted by the few words written on paper can’t be translated on screen by simply reading them out, neither assembling them into badass-like statements. To quote Raymond Chandler, “the technical basis of the Black Mask type of story […] was that the scene outranked the plot, in the sense that a good plot was one which made good scenes”. A lesson well learned by Miller paper works as well as by talented directors such as Quentin Tarantino: too bad Rodriguez isn’t quite there yet.


The gap between the movie and its comic-book counterparts is widened out by the presence of two original short-stories (The Long Bad Night and The Fat Loss) which, altough for different reasons, happen to blend quite poorly with the series and also don’t fit so nicely into the Sin City story arc. I personally liked the first one (featuring a great Joseph Gordon-Levitt) but I definitely couldn’t stand the latter, which is easily the worst part of the whole movie.


None of the many differences between the graphic-novel and its screen adaptation have anything to do with the overall movie quality, which is perfectly fine: the sequel is fun and enjoyable to its full extent (almost) as much as the first one. If anything, the exploitation moods and tones imposed by Rodriguez are able to “compensate” the lackness of high-impact, dramatic stories such as The Hard Goodbye and That Yellow Bastard in favor of the exceeding performances of  Josh Brolin, Eva Green and a no less than top notch cast. The final verdict is treatened, today like 10 years ago, by some inconsistencies in the filmmaking process and their major impact on the overall movie flow, less noticeable in the first part (featuring an excellent start with the short-story Just Another Saturday Night and the first scenes of ADTKF) but quickly escalating towards the end.

In a nutshell: go see it if you liked the first chapter: you probably won’t love it as much, but it will still be worthwile.


Configure MySQL to handle camel case (or case sensitive) table names

The default settings provided with the Win32 and Win64 builds of MySQL enforce a strict lowercase conversion for all the table and database names. This feature can be annoying for those working with auto-generated code tools (such as Entity Framework) because all the entities will be created in lower case as well. To overcome that we can use a useful, yet not widely known MySQL system variable who allows us to change the default behavior: lower_case_table_names. It can easily be added to the MySQL my.cfg file, usually found in the following folder:
C:\Program Files (x86)\MySQL\MySQL Server 5.6\
The system variable must be placed under the [mysqld] section, just like that:
Possible values are:

  • 0: Table and database names are stored on disk using the lettercase specified in the CREATE TABLE or  CREATE DATABASE statement. Name comparisons are case sensitive. It’s not advisable to set this variable to 0 if you are running MySQL on a system that has case-insensitive file names (such as Windows or Mac OS X): the official documentation discourages that because there could be issues with MyISAM indexes files.
  • 1: Table names are stored in lowercase on disk and name comparisons are not case sensitive. MySQL converts all table names to lowercase on storage and lookup. This behavior also applies to database names and table aliases. This means that all queries will be case-insensitive regarding db and/or table names (SELECT * FROM STUDENTS e SELECT * FROM students will give the exact same result); on the other side we won’t be able to use uppercase characters at all, which bring us back to our main issue.
  • 2: Table and database names are stored on disk using the lettercase specified in the CREATE TABLE or  CREATE DATABASE statement, but MySQL converts them to lowercase on lookup. Name comparisons are not case sensitive. This works only on file systems that are not case sensitive! InnoDB table names are stored in lowercase, as for lower_case_table_names=1.
For an extensive overview of the lower_case_table_names system variables we suggest to check out the official MySQL documentation: