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In a world far grittier and dangerous than our own, Frank Miller’s Sin City: A Dame To Kill For breathes new life into the force of reckoning that is Miller’s graphic novel of the same name.
This is not a sequel in the traditional movie sequel sense.
And that is a great thing.
Like The Godfather Part II, one of the greatest films ever made, the second installment in the Sin City series from directors Robert Rodriguez and Frank Miller is an innovative and independent masterpiece all its own.
Roughly two thirds of A Dame To Kill For goes back in time to events before the storylines in Sin City and depicts, often panel for panel, one of Frank Miller’s legendary graphic novel stories, as it was written and drawn by himself.
Each story taking place in and around Sin City’s shadowy towns are Frank Miller’s babies, his love.
Often considered one of Sin City’s deepest storylines, A Dame To Kill For depicts Ava, played perfectly by Eva Green, one of the all-time earth-shatteringly brilliant, ruthless, transcendent heroines ever crafted as a character in a fictitious work, and it also has a fierce monster of an anti-hero in Dwight McCarthy (played by Josh Brolin).
Make no mistake this is one of Miller’s best stories and that is saying something.
It is no wonder that many critics have glossed over this movie without praising it, because what goes on between Dwight and Ava alone is far beyond the normal cookie-cutter stereotypes that Hollywood revels in understanding in just two minutes of seeing them on-screen.
This is a smart movie with depth, fun, and gore.
Some reviewers have even commented that the flick might have been great if the overwhelming violence toward women did not completely turn them off.
The violence of striking women is actually far less than it was in the first movie (that the same critics loved once flocks of readers brought millions into the box office).
Domestic violence is nothing to consider lightly, but the world in which Sin City resides is a magnified look into our world’s ugliest and most beautiful intricacies, and with that, in Sin City women are treated more equally than they are in the misogynistic western society of the real world, and so they are actually kicking ass themselves, as strong people.
In Sin City, strife seems to find everyone, just as it does in the books.
Though the hooker with the heart of gold, Gail (reprised by Rosario Dawson), comes from a long line of western movie character types, in Sin City she is a smart, active leader that thoroughly fights for what she believes in, decimating those standing in her way.
Gail blows the mold to smithereens.
For those that loved the first movie and wanted new material to follow-up certain events, Miller and Rodriguez intertwine a new storyline of “the lucky guy” Johnny, played by Joseph Gordon-Levitt, and this crosses back and forth between Katie’s Bar where Nancy Callahan, depicted by the stunning Jessica Alba, is seeing Hartigan’s ghost after his untimely death in the first film.
What happens to the girl who only ever loved one man and lost him abruptly?
HINT: It is not good.
The remaining Roarke is at the heart of her troubles and after losing big poker hands to Johnny, the good senator is his thorn as well.
The new writing from Miller is every bit of Sin City that any of the graphic novels or the first movie was, and it does not disappoint.
Many great new characters are brought to the screen, such as a demented Dr. Kroenig played aptly by Christopher Lloyd and crime boss/living rock formation Wallenquist played by Stacy Keach.
But often stealing the show is one of Miller’s favorites, Marv!
The character Marv, reprised by the living embodiment of the graphic novel drawing Mickey Rourke, is back in all of his short quips, coat-wearing do-good-through-bashing-badguys glory.
How is this possible?
Well if the storyline of Marv in the first film took place after all of the others, than he would still be cracking heads and helping out his pals, as he does so damn well.
Impulsive Review Grade: A+
By R.J. Huneke
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The latest news involving Pentian’s US launch publication Cyberwar involves the thriller’s tremendous buzz and Hollywood knocking on the novel’s door.
Will the book be optioned?
In a recent talk with Pentian CEO Enrique Parrilla, Rune Works has learned that the buzz surrounding Pentian’s first major US release on the book market is leading to a whirlwind of Hollywood fervor.
In fact, “an unnamed studio in L.A. has already expressed interest in optioning the rights [for Cyberwar],” said Mr. Parrilla.
The commercial fiction thriller has a visual flair that the author, R.J. Huneke, believes would “translate well to film.”
Cyberwar will be released at the very start of Fall 2014, though the date the book will be in stores has not yet been announced.
In the description of the suspense work a grim present or possible future is laid out under the guise of a new regime . . .
It all went to hell when the world’s greatest cyber warriors chose to wage war for themselves and not on behalf of the politicians that hired them. Hackers, they used to be called.
To Xera, William Waltz was a broken spy and a fugitive, manipulated by the Cyber Elite that ruled from Canada to Peru. If she helped him, the Cyberwar could be avoided . . . but the assassin named “Sheetrock” tracked them to use his bio-hacked body to delete them both.
The research on cyber warfare and political protest, as well as a strong female protagonist set this riveting story apart.
The target audience for this book is the readers of commercial thrillers. Cyberwar resembles a cross between Miller’s Sin City and Fleming’s James Bond novels.
The book has been finished and is now a series.
For a limited time, Pentian is still crowdfunding for investors, and readers have the opportunity to have their names immortalized as a character in the Cyberwar Series. See it here: http://pentian.com/book/fund/601
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It seems the character Sheetrock wants to speak his mind, despite the book not being out yet. Well I have too much respect for the man to deny his simple request, so here is an exclusive excerpt from Cyberwar where the humble miner nicknamed "Sheetrock" gets to loose his mind.
I hope you enjoy it.
Some people have a song constantly playing in their head. Sheetrock was one of these, and he knew it. The young drill captain figured the smart people fed their soul with music every day, because one: Jesus loved music, and two: rolling down the river of audio helped keep the record from skipping. Whereas those that despised the music echoing in their brains, scoffed openly of it, and resisted it to the extreme, those people often got jarred into the realms of insanity. They beat on the player Jesus had given them and as a result their records did, on occasion, skip.
No matter the near-death run, the loss of his colleague and lover, or the freezing cold downpour, the David Byrne horns in his head blared on, and he welcomed the beauty of the earth, grimy as he was treading the soaked wooden dock. He whistled while his cargo unloaded, weighed, and purchased. It had taken all of an hour; it was the reason Sheetrock chose to land in Port Jeff in the first place: easy access to the scales and the buyers. Within another hour a quick sale had commenced.
With the payment transferred instantaneously upon completion of the cache transaction, Sheetrock walked swiftly with a slight limp toward the town’s bank (his knee had blown out in a ten kilometer benefit run and the rain’s moisture did it in). He had already handed each of his crew a payroll check that they knew would come into fruition once they had finished emptying the ship’s cargo hold, but he wanted to confirm with his own dark eyes that his personal account totaled twenty-eight million and change. He could finally afford to spend it all.
There was a slow methodical scraping as his muddy miner’s boots found the doormat outside the federal bank on the corner of Main Street. The heavy footwear were sealed, along with the black leathery jumpsuit that was made for rigorous activity in the oxygen deprived canals of space. He had not bothered changing. He was too eager.
At least the rain’s washed the dust off my ass, thought Sheetrock as he walked into the bright lights of the taupe room. The large man could not have looked more out of place. A mile or two up the road was the derelict sidewalks of the Station, where none of the black market shufflers would ever have looked at his unshaven face and his stained and patched up space suit and given it a second glance. In the bank, he was almost two feet taller than the shortest tellers, and they stared open mouthed as though he was the second coming of the Messiah.
There was no one in line, but Sheetrock was a slave to ritual so he entered the velvet rope lane and followed it in three snaking switchbacks before a prim, older woman with the biggest eyeglasses he had ever seen waved him over.
“Hello. I’d like to make a withdrawal-“
“Fill out the pad, sir,” she said before he could complete his sentence. He reluctantly bent and wrote sloppily on the screen with a pen that was tied to the counter and did not allow his long arms to lift it far enough to be comfortable writing in the lines.
“As for the amount . . . Rosemary,” said Sheetrock noting her nametag, “I put in for it two weeks ago, but I don’t know exactly how much is in there. I want all of it.”
“Very well, sir.”
She tilted her round head back to look him over and confirm his face with the scan she had on the screen in front of her. It was a feat that seemed a difficult one without there being any visible sign of a neck on her, and the blue eyes behind her enormous glasses bulged in the magnification as she took all of him in.
A frantic clacking of keys was heard, as she composed herself. Rosemary, the banker, seemed to be in a perpetual hurry.
“That’s the amount you have there, sir.” She pointed down toward his screen. “The supervisor’s already verified your request and approved it. Do you have a suitcase or some kind of carrier for the withdrawal?” she asked querulously.
“Jesus please be with me today,” his whisper to himself was a growl that she heard quite plainly. “I’m soaking wet and fresh off the ship. Does it look like I have a suitcase with me, Rosemary?”
“No, I don’t think so.”
“Do you have some kind of transportation case?” he asked impatiently. The round face tilted a little, like a bird’s.
“Deposit cases are available for two hundred dollars each. Are you sure you don’t want to go-”
“Listen, little lady, lord knows that twenty-eight million’s not going to fit into the envelopes you normally give me my cash in, now is it?”
* * *
Two large gray storage containers were brought in front of the counter, where Sheetrock paced. He signed for them hurriedly, and a resonant tone crackled and cut off the elevator music that had been playing. Everyone looked up, startled. A booming electronic voice took over the loudspeakers:
“THIS IS A CYBER ALERT: A 7 P.M. CURFEW IS NOW IN EFFECT UNTIL FURTHER NOTICE. PLEASE RETURN TO YOUR HOMES NOW.”
If you would like to invest in Cyberwar, get a signed hardcover, or even become a character in the series, please go to Pentian Publishing's site here.
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Well the CYBERWAR Book Trailer is making a huge splash! It follows one of the main characters in his first depicted mission.
The R.J. Huneke thriller will soon to be released by Pentian Publishing here and you can preorder it or even become a character in the book!
Read the CYBERWAR excerpt here:
It all went to hell when the world’s greatest cyber warriors chose to wage war for themselves and not on behalf of the politicians that hired them. Hackers, they used to be called. Somehow the term for “one who hacks a computer” was deemed offensive during the Occupancy War and subsequently placed on the Banned Vocabulary List.
Many decades earlier, at the end of the twentieth century, cyber warriors were defined simply:
1. Cyber-warrior is a person who engages in cyberwarfare for personal reasons or out of political or religious belief.
2. A spy that can infiltrate the highest levels of security
3. Cyber-warriors wage war using information technology and may attack computers or information systems through hacking or defending them from their counterparts.
There was an overlong shadow just outside of the Devil’s Shed. The facility’s alias was local folklore; the graying storage container’s door had what looked like two demonic horns of rust near the top. No one in town knew its real purpose.
William Waltz squatted just below the enormous demonization and waited patiently. His face was covered in grease to eliminate any glare that the rain might make on his skin; this was nothing unfamiliar to him, as his father had a career as a bike mechanic and in his short life had shown ‘skinny William’ the value of getting dirty when it served a purpose. Thirty years of grit had made him a world-class locksmith.
The code magnet had to pull enough of a reusable ocular scan from memory to fool the door’s access scanner. The lock’s subterfuge, a functioning power switch box, hung open from hinges. The box’s red handle remained in the “Off” position as a decoy.
Waltz held the B9 scatter pistol as though it was glued to his right hand, and he stood utterly still. In the sweeping rain, the only streetlamp was a good fifty yards away, and though the glint of its light could be seen in the drops that clung to the silenced black barrel, he was effectively invisible if he did not move.
Twenty minutes had already passed this way. The customized code magnet would infiltrate the scanner’s memory sometime within twenty-five. Come on already. I really have to take a leak, he thought wryly. Sitting still was not one of his favorite tasks...