Six Picks for the Week of October 1-7

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  • Publish Date: September 30, 2012

Resident Evil 6 X360 reviews PS3 reviews
New game in stores Tuesday

Pick 1Arriving just a few weeks after Paul W.S. Anderson's latest cinematic masterpiece (Resident Evil: Retribution 39), the newest playable installment in the long-running survival horror franchise is set in the distant future (by which we mean next year), over a decade after the Raccoon City incident. You'll get to choose among three separate but connected scenarios, each with its own protagonist (Leon, Chris, and newcomer Jake) and setting (the U.S., the fictitious Eastern European state of Edonia, and a Hong Kong-like Chinese city, all of which are the targets of bioterrorist attacks), and you can play alone or in co-op mode. The game is out for consoles Tuesday, and a Windows version is expected at a later date.

See if you can survive the official site.

Frankenweenie Read reviews
In theaters Friday

Pick 2Tim Burton’s second release of 2012, following the disappointing Dark Shadows 55, takes the classic tale of a boy and his dog and dresses it up with the director’s typical mix of morbid humor and lush visuals. The film’s source material is a live-action short directed by Burton in 1984 (check it out here) about a boy who reanimates his beloved dog Sparky. To expand it to feature length, Burton decided to re-imagine the world in black-and-white, 3D stop-motion animation and enlist the help of frequent collaborator John August (who wrote the screenplays for Big Fish 58, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory 72, and Corpse Bride 83) to add to the original’s cast of characters with new humans and pet monsters alike. Martin Short, Catherine O'Hara, Martin Landau, Charlie Tahan, and Winona Ryder provide the voice talent while Danny Elfman scores his 15th Burton film.

Get to know Sparky, Vampire Cat, and Mummy Hamster at the official website

Halo 4: Forward Unto Dawn
Web series starts Friday on YouTube

Pick 3Though Halo 4 is still over a month away, fans of the Xbox space shooter franchise (and there are many, given that the series has sold over 40 million copies) can satisfy their Master Chief needs in the interim with Forward Unto Dawn, a live-action spinoff that will stream on the web in five segments over five consecutive weeks (with the first arriving on Friday). Produced by Microsoft with a budget estimated at $5-10 million, this first-ever Halo film tells the prequel story of the original alien invasion by the Covenant as seen through the eyes of trainees at a military academy. The individual segments will then be edited together with additional footage into a feature-length film that will be included with the Limited Edition version of the new game.

Watch the series on YouTube at Machinima Prime's Forward Unto Dawn channel.

Taken 2 Read reviews
In theaters Friday

Pick 4She’s taken. He’s taken. They’re all taken, and it takes a man with a particular set of skills to get them all back together. That man is Liam Neeson, playing Bryan Mills, a combination of bad-ass and kick-ass last seen carving his way through a group of Albanians to rescue his kidnapped daughter. Now the father of one of those Albanian kidnappers (the one who got shocked till he dropped) is out to avenge his son’s death, so when Neeson, Maggie Grace and Famke Janssen arrive in Istanbul, it’s on. Unfortunately for Rade Serbedzija and his vengeful crew, they have no idea who they’re messing with. Director Olivier Megaton (Transporter 3 51, Colombiana 45), who with a name like that was required to be an action director since birth, takes the reigns from the original Taken 50 director Pierre Morel, but delivers what looks to be much of the same non-stop action.

Check out Liam Neeson’s “give me back my wife” face at the official website.

The 2nd Law by Muse Read reviews
New album in stores Tuesday

Pick 5Tuesday, bombastic English stadium rockers Muse return with their sixth studio album, a follow-up to 2009's major international hit The Resistance 72. Like that previous album, The 2nd Law is produced by the band itself, and it finds Muse diving a bit deeper into electronica (though it's not quite the full-on "dubstep album" originally feared), while retaining elements of symphonic rock (with arrangements by Beck's dad, David Campbell), prog, and classic rock. Included is the London Olympics theme "Survival" as well as recent single "Madness," the video for which is below. According to early reviews, what it lacks in continuity it makes up for with thrills.

Amuse yourself with tour dates and more info at the official band site.

Comedy Central's late night hosts branch out
New book in stores Tuesday / Pay-per-view debate webcast Saturday at 8p ET

Pick 6Stephen Colbert and Jon Stewart want your money. The former, the longest-tenured host of The Colbert Report in the show's history, returns to bookstores Tuesday with his new title, America Again: Re-becoming the Greatness We Never Weren't, a sequel to his 2007 best-seller I Am America (And So Can You!). The new book promises to include "everything from chapters, to page numbers, to fonts," and it delivers on all counts. Meanwhile, Colbert's Comedy Central tag team partner and Daily Show host Stewart will battle arch-nemesis and Fox News stalwart Bill O'Reilly in a 90-minute debate on Saturday at 8p ET. Billed as "The Rumble in the Air-Conditioned Auditorium," the event will be streamed live on the web to anyone choosing to pay a $4.95 fee (with half of the proceeds going to charities); paying customers will also be able to watch the event at a later time of their choosing if they cannot make the live stream.

Get more information on the debate at therumble2012.com, or check out Colbert's book at Amazon.

Closing the book on last week

#1 Product Most Popular Title on Metacritic
Looper 84 Week of 9/23-9/29
#1 Movie Weekend Box Office Champion (Estimated, U.S. only; source: Boxofficemojo.com)
Hotel Transylvania 46 $43.0 million; 1st week at #1
#1 Album #1 Album on Billboard 200 (Source: Billboard.com/Nielsen SoundScan)
Pink: The Truth About Love 77 1st week at #1
Top-Rated TV Show Top-Rated Primetime Broadcast Show (Source: Nielsen)
Sunday Night Football (NBC) 21.3 million viewers; week of 9/17-9/23

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