Over on my personal Facebook page, we’re neck-deep in a discussion of Spike Lee’s latest offering ("Da Sweet Blood of Jesus"), which I saw last night at the ABFF. But the conversation has moved beyond that film, and into consideration of what some of us perceive as an ideological and artistic shift in Spike’s approach to filmmaking, and more.
A question that some have is, essentially, whether Spike’s still got *it*?
I recently read an article or two on whether The Wachowskis still have *it*, given the lackluster critical and commercial performances of the films they’ve made since the groundbreaking hit that was "The Matrix," which inspired a trilogy. Namely, "Speed Racer," and "Cloud Atlas" most recently; and with news 2 weeks ago that the release date for their next feature, "Jupiter Ascending" (initially set for July 25, 2014), has been moved to February 6, 2015, as well as a trailer that didn’t inspire as much excitement as one would expect a Wachowski project to, some are wondering whether this doesn’t bode well for the film.
Time will tell. I’m still an appreciative fan, although I can’t speak for everyone.
The duo has cast what sounds like another trippy project (based on the just-released official description of it below) – a new Netflix series titled "Sense8."
Deadline reports that the series’ international ensemble cast includes Naveen Andrews, Daryl Hannah, Brian J. Smith, Tuppence Middleton, Aml Ameen, Freema Agyeman, Tena Desae, Doona Bae, Max Riemelt, Alfonso Herrera, Erendira Ibarra, Jamie Clayton, Miguel Silvestre and Terrence Mann.
Meanwhile, co-showrunner J. Michael Straczynski shared a description of "Sense8," which reads: "Eight characters around the world who, in the aftermath of a tragic death, find themselves linked to each other mentally and emotionally… They can not only see and talk to each other as though they were in the same place, they have access to each other’s deepest secrets… Not only must they figure out what happened and why and what it means for the future of humanity, they must do so while being hunted by an organization out to capture, kill or vivisect them.”
So it’s like The Borg from "Star Trek TNG" meet "The Matrix"… or something like that. How does it read to you?
The production will span nine locations on four continents – Chicago, San Francisco, London, Iceland, Seoul, Mumbai, Berlin, Mexico City and Nairobi – and is expected to debut in 2015.
As an aside, Netflix certainly isn’t shy about spending a lot of cash on original content. This one certainly won’t be cheap. But I dig their attempt at diversifying their offerings to attract consumers. Either move forward or die in this business.