WonderCon 2014: Feature Film Highlights Part I

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Unlike last year, this year’s WonderCon features a number of feature films. While it may not be “exclusive”, as these movies are going to be out in theaters pretty soon; and while the panels and exhibits have lower energy in general, it’s still entertaining to see extended trailers or additional footage and chat with select cast and crew.

Here are some of the feature film highlights:

Edge of Tomorrow” (starringTom Cruise, Emily Blunt)

P1110818-400In attendance: Bill Paxton

Bill Paxton briefly discussed the action-packed movie, in which Tom Cruise’s character is a soldier battling an alien army and experiences a “groundhog day” on the day he dies. He continuously relives his experience, and in the process what he learns allows and his combat skills get better each time. Paxton commented about how heavy the exoskeleton suits were and there were times where the actors had to be suspended by chains to help relieve the weight of the suits. Paxton asserted that the movie would not just be a guy’s movie; it will appeal to the gals as well. He praised Emily Blunt, playing a fellow soldier, for being tough and terrific.

Into the Storm”

P1110831-400In attendance: director Steven Quale, stars Richard Armitage, Max Deacon, Jeremy Sumpter, Arlen Escarpia

This panel showed a goosebumps-inducing trailer, displaying the wrath of multiple tornadoes, wreaking havoc in a small town. Rain, wind, lightning, funnel cloud, fire, including a fire twister, destroying everything on its path. There’s a balance of special effects between practical and digital. The actors were blasted with a 120 MPH wind machine, sprays of cold water and dirt, and debris crashing around them. The result is natural disaster at its most powerful.


P1110843-400In attendance: director Gareth Edwards

The bulk of the trailer with the tsunami in Hawaii is already out, but it’s the closing scene that got fans raving. All the elements were expertly put together. Godzilla, rising from the sea, is only partly seen in the beginning, raising curiosity and fright. Floods sweep the tropical city. Humans are shooting at the unknown monster and their survival is hanging in the balance. [SPOILER ALERT!] But just when we thought Godzilla would appear in its all its glory, a winged bug-like alien creature comes into full view and faces off with Godzilla.

Director Gareth Edwards noted that the challenge in designing a Godzilla was that everyone had an opinion of what Godzilla should look like. And as far as the other creature, from the many monster over the last decades, he took different elements of different monsters and created something that hopefully would look original.

Photos by Nathalia Aryani.

Copyright (c) 2014. Nathalia Aryani.

Nathalia Aryani is a film columnist and has a movie blog, The MovieMaven ( Twitter: She can be reached at

Nathalia Aryani is a Rotten Tomatoes-approved film critic ( She has a movie blog, The MovieMaven ( Twitter: @the_moviemaven. She can be reached at [email protected].

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