Popcorn Time is finally out for iOS, giving iPad and iPhone users direct access to “The Netflix of Pirated Movies” service for the first time ever. There’s just one catch: it requires a jailbreak.
Over 50% of iPhone and iPad users have already upgraded to iOS 8 and a jailbreak isn’t coming out anyday soon, but if you want to stream movies to your iOS device you’re still in luck. A competing service called MovieBox does pretty much the exact same thing as Popcorn Time, and you can get it on your iPhone 6 and 6 Plus 8 without needing to jailbreaking.
Can Jupiter save the Earth? Screengrab: Cult of Mac
This new trailer has flying robots, stunningly massive spaceships, and baroque alien societies galore. It’s a heart-pounding glimpse into the new film, Jupiter Ascending, which comes out in February of 2015.
It’s also got some Channing Tatum with pointy ears (a sci-fi staple!) and Mila Kunis looking badass in pleather. Also, some delightful moments with Sean Bean, and he doesn’t even die in this trailer. The trailer is stunning, and you can see hints of The Matrix and Cloud Atlas all over this thing, which makes sense — it’s a Wachowski film, thorough and through.
There are few feelings better in the world than sitting down in front of your latest shiny gadget to watch a great sci-fi movie. With the iPhone 6 launching tomorrow, your choice of shiny gadget has likely already been made. That leaves just one conundrum then: what to watch on it.
Scroll through our gallery for Cult of Mac’s picks of the 6 best modern sci-fi movies to test your new super-sized iPhone in style.
From recognizing music that’s playing nearby using Shazam to leaping into action just by saying “Hey Siri,” Apple’s virtual assistant has upped the ante for iOS 8 and iPhone 6. What better movie to celebrate, then, than last year’s tremendous sci-fi rom-com Her?
Written, directed and produced by the prodigiously talented Spike Jonze (Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind), Her tells the story of a lonely Los Angeles resident, played by Joaquin Phoenix, who develops a relationship with his Siri-style A.I., voiced by none other than Scarlett Johansson.
It’s an immensely touching, and oddly human, film about relationships — and its smart, soulful look at the meeting point between tech and humanity is straight out of Apple’s playbook.
The iPhone 6’s higher resolution display allows 720p high-definition video, which Apple has labelled “Retina HD Display.” So what’s the best movie to pick then to show off its impressive 4.7- or 5.5-inch display to yourself, or else make non-iPhone owning friends green with envy?
As good an answer as any is Edge of Tomorrow, the 2014 Tom Cruise-starring blockbuster given the slightly lame home video re-title Live Die Repeat. It’s a Groundhog Day-inspired sci-fi romp about an average Joe who gets wrapped up in a war with aliens. It’s all great fun, and well worth checking out if you missed it in theaters. Which most people seem to have.
Okay, so HealthKit’s last-minute problems mean that it was unceremoniously pulled from iOS 8’s launch lineup, but with the “quantified self” ethos at the heart of tech’s current obsession with mobile health and lifestyle tracking, who can blame me for going back and revisiting 1997’s Gattaca?
Sure, a bio-punk story about genetic modification and the perils of a perfect society is a far cry from an iPhone that helps you workout in the gym, but this is still a tremendous sci-fi movie that is more relevant than ever as time goes on. Its dystopian future’s not a world away from the one depicted in Apple’s famous "1984” Macintosh ad, either.
Gravity picked up a ton of awards at this year’s Oscars — including (but not limited to) Best Original Score, Best Sound Editing and Best Sound Mixing. Those three prizes more than qualify this movie for being a great one to try out your new iPhone 6’s speaker quality on. The fact that it is a constantly tense, fantastically performed, and always beautiful movie unlike any other is just icing on an already deliciously weightless cake.
With its gorgeously rounded form factor, the iPhone 6 is a big, beautiful beast. Which is a bit like the mecha in Guillermo del Toro’s epic 2013 movie Pacific Rim in fact. (Fine, I’m stretching the simile a bit — but don’t let that put you off a fantastic film.) Set just a few years in the future, Pacific Rim tells the story of an Earth at war with giant monsters from a portal on the bottom of the Pacific Ocean. To fight them, mankind unites to build giant fighting robots.
The rest, as they say, is history. Or rather future.
I tried to come up with a way of tying Looper into the iPhone 6, but aside from a strained metaphor about planned obsolescence, I really couldn’t. But if you’re after a sci-fi film to leave you feeling as awestruck as Apple’s September 9 unveiling of the iPhone 6 (there we go!) this is absolutely it.
Directed by the talented Rian Johnson and starring Bruce Willis, Joseph Gordon-Levitt and Emily Blunt, Looper tells the story of how time travel is used by future criminals who send people back in time to be killed by so-called “loopers.”
It’s way more fun than that garbled description makes it sound, and will go down in history as a sci-fi cult classic. Until it’s killed by its future self, that is.
The 8 Sci-Fi and Fantasy Novels We'd Love To See As Movies
With franchises like The Hobbit and The Hunger Games continuing to tear it up at the box office, the sci-fi and fantasy genres are booming. But while the movies don’t show any signs of slowing down in terms of their impending arrivals, there are still a veritable ton of classics waiting to be given the big screen treatment.
Different movie versions of Brian Jacques’ series of children's fantasy novels have been touted going back 20 years, but nothing has happened yet. Taking place in a fantasy world called Redwall, the series can best be described as a cross between The Lord of the Rings and Watership Down.
While Pixar could do great things in the CGI realm, a Studio Ghibli animated movie would be a dream come true.
If I could pick one title from this list to be made into a movie, it would be this one. Released in 1984, the same year as the original Macintosh, William Gibson’s debut novel kickstarted the Sprawl trilogy and helped shape the Cyberpunk genre. A tech-noir story about a down-and-out computer hacker hired to pull off the hack of a lifetime, it's got the brains to be a compelling piece of filmmaking and, in the right hands, could be as visually stunning as Chris Nolan’s Inception.
Unfortunately it’s been in development hell for years. Apparently there’s a script co-written by Gibson, while offers have been made to Liam Neeson and Mark Wahlberg. Still, nothing’s materialized yet.
We’ve seen plenty of Philip K. Dick stories adapted for the big screen, but never this one. Set in an alternate history where the Axis won World War II and now control the U.S.A., The Man In The High Castle is a weird thriller that has all the makings of a classic. Recently it was announced that this is set to become an Amazon TV pilot, but a movie would be equally awesome. Give it to Paul Verhoeven as a comeback vehicle.
Seriously, why isn’t this a movie yet? The Young Adult book category has birthed some of the most inventive, groundbreaking and, yes, lucrative franchise properties of the past few years. Telling the story of young people protecting the world from undead dangers, the Abhorsen Trilogy manages to be both massively entertaining, whip smart, and surprisingly affecting. Producers, whip out your checkbooks now.
With 41 Discworld novels, there’s no shortage of source materials for movie producers to play with: either for chopping it up and remixing the pieces like the James Bond novels, or doing straightforward novel adaptations — or as straightforward as such a complex and interconnected world can be.
While there have been numerous TV Discworld adaptations, a movie has so far eluded us, although Terry Gilliam did come reasonably close with a Good Omens adaptation.
Mixing surreal Monty Python-esque humour with an incredibly detailed, fleshed-out world that would cost millions to bring to screen, a Discworld movie unfortunately has mainstream flop/cult hit written all over. But what a cult hit it could be.
It’s a cliche to say it, but approaching 75 years after it was originally published, Aldous Huxley’s Brave New World is more relevant than it’s ever been. Skipping over the typical dystopias shown in the majority of sci-fi movies, in Brave New World the population aren’t sold into slavery, or murdered at the age of 30, but are rather living together in a scientifically-managed society, with control being exerted via pleasure through the drug soma.
In an age of digital addiction and Google’s data-driven philosophy to the world, this could be an amazingly relevant movie.
The Hugo and Nebula Award-winning novel by Neil Gaiman, American Gods looks like it’s well on its way to becoming a TV series. Not yet, though. In the meantime, the story of ex-con Shadow getting caught up in a feud between gods would have the makings of a great film. Factor in the amount of consumerist-skewing social commentary and this could be the perfect vehicle for David “Fight Club” Fincher to get his teeth into.
Presenting a future American society in which all books are outlawed, Ray Bradbury’s Fahrenheit 451 is another novel that could be worthy of an update for the Internet age, in which publishers have the ability to rewrite or even delete entire e-books as they see fit. In fact, Fahrenheit 451 is an anomaly on the list since it was actually the recipient of a 1966 movie adaptation by François Truffaut.
Given that close to a half-century has passed since then, though, and social media tools like Snapchat and Yo are routinely subject to many of the same criticisms that interactive television show The Family is in Fahrenheit 451, this could be another chillingly relevant sci-fi movie. Give it to Nolan to direct and watch the plaudits roll in.
With Guardians of the Galaxy, Marvel Studios is spinning its movie empire forward into the future. Images courtesy Marvel Studios
A comic book movie about misfit space superheroes might not seem to have much in common with Apple’s long-rumored entry into wearable computing. However, for a handful of reasons, Guardians of the Galaxy is to Marvel Studios what the iWatch is to Apple –- a high-profile release that’s critical to the company’s future success.
“I could probably track my interest in toys via Star Wars,” Larner says. “When I was a kid in the early ’80s, I was completely swept up by the original Kenner 3.75-inch range. Then, in the ’90s, the remastered movies came out along with whispers of the prequels so the Star Wars toy range was reintroduced, so that caught my interest again. However, it was when Lego had the bright idea of making Star Wars Lego sets in 1999 that I really got sucked in and I haven’t looked back since!”
Deleted scenes, director’s commentary and more, now come with every iTunes HD movie Photo: Buster Hein
Buying movies on iTunes just got a lot more like purchasing a Blu-ray from Best Buy, thanks to the addition of an all-new iTunes Extras features for HD movies. The new feature is part of the iTunes 11.3 update Apple released this morning, that brings new content to movies played on your Mac and Apple TV.
A brilliant computer programmer living in a future dystopian totalitarian state must prove the Zero Theorem, in which 100 percent equals 0, or all is nothing. He’s got a touch of social anxiety (“We do not like to be touched!”), a seriously bald head, and a variety of future-weird outfits that he wears in each scene. Sound like fun?
If you’ve seen any of Terry Gilliam’s similar work, like 12 Monkeys or Brazil (or even if you just dig Apple’s similarly themed 1984-esque commercial by Ridley Scott) you’re going to want to check this one out. The gloriously wacky and edgy trailer is below.
Hollywood is reboot-mad, with some movies (like Chis Nolan's Dark Knight trilogy) coming up trumps and others (like this year's Godzilla) falling short of fan expectations.
We've opined about concepts we wish Apple would revisit, but tech isn't the only area where good ideas get forgotten. There are plenty of series we'd love to see dusted off, either because the original was so good or because the subject proved just a bit too ambitious for its time. With that in mind, here's our gallery of eight movie franchises we'd love to see back on screen in the near future.
Which ones made the cut? Click through the gallery above to find out.
Pixar movies are all well and good (well, great), but I can’t help but miss the kind of kid’s movies that did the rounds in the 1980s. Of these, The Last Starfighter was a favorite -- and it’s definitely prime material for a reboot.
The movie tells the story of Alex Rogan, an average teen boy who’s recruited by an alien defense force to help fight in an interstellar war, all because of his skill at the Starfighter arcade game. It was essentially a Star Wars ripoff, but it was one of the best ones, and among the first films to feature CGI graphics.
Three decades after the movie’s 1984 release, video games have moved on a lot, but The Last Starfighter's key ingredients would be great in a refresh for the Oculus Rift generation. Today’s photo-realistic graphics and immersive VR environments would also open the doors for a blurring between fantasy and reality, making this a cross between The Last Starfighter and Total Recall.
I’m a Stargate geek, plain and simple. From the original 1994 Roland Emmerich movie to SG-1, Atlantis, Infinity and even Stargate Universe, I’ve watched pretty much everything related to this military space-hopping sci-fi series.
As much as I love the concept, though, there’s little doubt that the idea of present-day military men and women who travel across the universe and find themselves in an alien version of ancient Egypt could benefit from modern special effects. The original movie feels oddly small these days, and imagining what could be done in post-Avatar Hollywood is pretty mind-boggling. Original co-creator Emmerich has pretty much disavowed most of the spinoffs, but that doesn’t mean he couldn't borrow the odd idea here and there.
Speaking of sandy epics ... Frank Herbert’s 1965 sci-fi novel Dune has, to date, spawned one movie and two TV miniseries. Herbert himself wrote six novels, but thanks to his son Brian and co-author Kevin J. Anderson, Dune has now expanded to a series of 20 novels's worth of potential movie source material — with various prequels and tangential side notes that all manage to connect into a single, sprawling storyline.
If you’ve never read one, trying to explain the plot is a bit like trying to fill in a newbie on Game of Thrones during the opening credits of an episode midway through Season 4. Set more than 20,000 years in the future, Dune takes place in a world in which royal houses battle for control of the desert planet Arrakis and its precious resource, the spice melange. Being every bit as deep as the Star Wars and Lord of the Rings universes, it’s got plenty of mileage to kick-start a new franchise.
Unlike every other movie on this list, Reign of Fire never really delivered in its original incarnation. A movie about military fighting dragons should have been superb, brainless fun rather than an uninspired mess. A reboot could take the high-concept brilliance of the original, add a bit more Godzilla-style destruction, and wind up with a movie that could be well worth a look.
Note to would-be rebooters: Good luck getting the original cast of Christian Bale, Matthew McConaughey and Gerard Butler for anything close to 2002's price.
It’s only been a few years since the last entry in Chris Nolan’s fantastic Dark Knight trilogy, but what can I say — I’m a Batman fan! The great thing about a hero whose exploits have been published every month for 75 years is that there are dozens of distinctive takes on the character that could form the basis of a reboot.
Tim Burton’s movies were vintage goth Batman; Nolan’s flicks brought the character into the real world; Zack Snyder’s upcoming Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice will seemingly borrow heavily from Frank Miller’s The Dark Knight Returns. So what’s left for another solo series? How about a movie that embraces Batman’s comic book persona as it exists today? Scott Snyder and Greg Capullo have been setting the world on fire with their kick-ass interpretation of Batman in DC Comics' New 52, while the Arkham video games introduced a new generation to Batman’s rogues gallery.
Is there a single solitary person who wouldn’t want to see Snyder and Capullo’s Batman go one-on-one with, say, Deadshot? There have been some very good movies in Batman's history, but none that have ever felt quite like the comic. And let’s finally have a proper version of Robin while we’re at it.
Remake Alien? Sacrilege! Remind moviegoers of why it's one of the best and most terrifying franchises around with a reboot? Absolutely.
Even as someone who dearly loves the Alien franchise and quotes James Cameron’s Aliens on an almost daily basis, I readily admit there hasn’t been a great entry in the series since the '80s -- or a passable one since 1997.
Like so many of the movies mentioned here, the real advance that would bring Alien up-to-date is the leap forward in special effects. Modern CGI would make possible some of the grand-scale battle scenes that simply weren’t feasible back when the franchise was in its prime. An even better idea: Borrow from the cinematic revelation that was Gravity to take this film back to its scary roots.
This is another movie nobody should ever think about remaking, but which could have the makings of a fantastic sequel. Quentin Tarantino has created a lot of memorable characters in his career, but perhaps none more so than Vincent Vega, Jules Winnfield, Marsellus Wallace and gang.
While the original tied up each plot line neatly within the confines of the movie, there are still plenty of questions left over about what happened next. Tarantino’s talked about revisiting some of Pulp Fiction's characters, but to date he never has. We’re there in a shot the moment he does.
Buffy, one of the best shows of the late '90s, rose to prominence thanks to the same winning mix of kick-ass fantasy action, soap opera plotting and snappy one-liners that would go on to make The Avengers a comic book movie classic. Taking the core concept of a teenage vampire hunter -- which got turned into a comedy/horror film in 1992 -- and adding some Walking Dead-level grit would be the perfect way to reclaim vampire movies from the ignominy of Twilight.
What did we miss?
Got your own favorite movie or TV franchise that’s just begging for a reboot? Let us know in the comments below.
Hunger Games: Mockingjay, Part 1 is coming to theaters this November, and the propaganda public relations machinery is getting in its first swing.
In a new trailer posted on YouTube Wednesday and embedded below, you’ll get to see Donald Sutherland as President Snow, the creepy dictator-like leader of Panem, the totalitarian state that runs the teens-killing-teens Hunger Games as a way to control the means of production via fear and sweeping promises of security.
It’s a creepy trailer that looks like a propaganda film, with President Snow mouthing platitudes and a brainwashed Peeta Mellark, played by Josh Hutcherson, standing at Snow’s right hand, staring up into the sky (or ceiling).