Reviews

Prometheus is Pointless

We went to see Prometheus, and I am glad I will not remember this film at all in a week.  It was dull, boring, and poorly written.

So many people have tore this movie apart, I don't want to follow them.  I want to take a different tact.

The Pointlessness of Life

This movie is little more than a nihilist propaganda film that works way to hard to teach you several things:

  1. Religion is futile.
  2. Science is futile.
  3. Belief in anything is futile.
  4. The Sontarans created man before they shrank.
  5. Drugs lead to death.
  6. Sex proves you are not a robot, unless you are a Cylon.
  7. Androids don't die.
  8. Goo makes snakes.
  9. Women can walk, run, jump, fight, lift heavy objects, and repel down great heights immediately after a cicerian.
  10. Aliens are brutish and dumb, but not the ones you are thinkin of.
  11. Prequels are rarely ever good.

 

Walking Dead

Most Zombie shows are boring excuses to do terribly violent things to our neighbors.  I suppose just writing this will bring the wrath of Zombie fans down on me like a crowd of walkers after a gunshot in Atlanta, but season 1 left me with such mixed feelings.

This show was a different experience for me than most genre series. Usually, I am only moderately interested in the first episode and then with each passing episode my interest grows.

With Walking Dead I loved the first episode. It was everything I wanted in a series, and reminded me of everything I loved about Romero's Night of the Living Dead. It was suspenseful and thrilling and introduced interesting characters.  

But after the first episode, everything changed. I am not sure if the quality went down or if I was immunized to the techniques they used to engender suspense.

Don't get me wrong, there were scenes that I liked in the later episodes, but the magic of the first episode never returned. I found the plots to be overly predictable. They foreshadowed every event so well, I knew when everything was going to happen, and each event happened right on queue.

As a cord-cutter, it will be a while before I can watch season 2. Hopefully, they will focus more on the characters, which is the strength of the series, and less on the plot devices and obvious story models they did in season 1.

Review: Transformers 3

Transformers 3 is awesome movie. My expectations for a giant killer robot movie are simple. First, giant robots. Secondly, stuff blowing up. Thirdly, see the first two and do many of it lots of robots and tons of explosions. Thats it. As expected Transformers 3 had lots of giant killer robots and stuff blowing up. The pleasant surprise and bonus came in the form of a good storyline that did not seem out of place with nor detract from all of the explosions and giant robots. After the film I discovered that Orci and Kurtzman had nothing to do with the writing, a smart choice by Bay since the writing on this film is way better then the first two. Another pleasant deviation from the first two Transformers movies was being spared the bad acting of Megan Fox. In Transformers 3 we get to meet the beef's new love interest played beautifully by Rosie Huntington-Whiteley. I would even go so far as to say her screen presence helped the beef with his performance. The effects look great. This is a must see and the best of the Transformers movies not counting the 80's animated one which will be incredibly hard to beat.

New Green Lantern Not a Pooser

Ok, listen up all you poosers.

Contrary to my low expectations of and the other poorly executed comic movies that have come out this year Green Lantern is awesome!  Quite often I find myself singing the praise of the animated movies over the large budget movies but in this case both are great.

They did a great job with the story staying faithful to the comics pulling elements from even the first showcase presents Green Lantern.  In the non action parts of the movie made sense and furthered the story along.

The effects including his suit looks good in 3d and not so good in 2.  Darn them for making me praise 3d but this time it works.  

Between this movie and Green Lantern: Emerald Knights I'm looking forward to seeing the Sinestro Core War.

If you havent picked up your copy of Emerald lights get it here it's worth it!

Reclaiming the Blade

Reclaiming the Blade is a documentary about the lost European Martial Arts of the sword, and the lost appreciation for the art of swordsmithing. They do touch on Kendo, but it it is more to show what the west lost with the advent of firearms.

The film constantly denigrates fencing, and recreation societies like the SCA, insisting that they, like filmmakers have little to nothing to do with the classical art of swordplay. While I agree, the constant repetition of this point eventually made me sigh as it continued.

The last section of the film is a cry of anguish regarding how poorly true swordplay is represented in film. I had to laugh when one gentlemen took on the Zorro Z cut with so much seriousness.

They do list a few films they like, but I felt they strayed a little bit from the point of the documentary. Eventually, they do thank the high fantasy films for maintaining interest in the sword, but it felt like an afterthought.

Overall, the movie is interesting, and covers the topic well, though I did feel like they were constantly trying to convert me to their point of view. The sword is important to the history of the world. I agree. There is no reason to thank pop culture swordplay for maintaining interest in the blade, then in the next breath go after pop culture for not being realistic. After all, the point of the film is that these arts were lost and are now being resurrected. I am not sure why that bothered me so much. It is probably because I have written my share of sword fights, and felt slighted by the fair accusation of not knowing what I was talking about.

The music was the biggest problem with the film, and when that is the main critique, you know I am stretching to find one.  It was very, well, the best word I can think of is soothing, except when they break out the heavy metal guitars to prove that real swordplay is hard core. I mention it because the soundtrack did the one thing a good soundtrack should never do, it drew attention to itself. I was pulled out of the narration a couple times by the music, but it is not that big a deal.

If you are interested in the sword, than definitely check it out. It was worth the time, and I learned a few things from it. I do wish they would have spent more time with the swordsmith. He was one of the most interesting people they interviewed, and he left me wanting to know more,

Review: Predators

 

Predators arrived from Netflix  and I really enjoyed it, 8 out of 10.  This is a great Predator movie doing justice by the original movie, Predator.  Definitely an owner for Predator fans, at least a watcher for those who love action films and the  hunt.

 

I really enjoyed how Predators got into the spirit of and the philosophy behind the hunt.  It’s a franchise about hunters and hunting is the one big theme.  In this one their prey are some of the most dangerous people from earth.  The way they handle traps and trapping is also really neat.  I also liked how they dropped the idea of the hunting grounds being used as a means for the predators to evolve their hunting style, techniques, skills, and technology.

Likes

  • References to the original Predator
  • Tight action and plenty of it
  • Cool / Compelling looking aliens
  • The hunt and trapping
  • The actors do a great job
  • A crazy Laurence Fishburne:  he does crazy well!

Dislikes

  • Pacing slow
  • The big Predator’s reveal is underwhelming
  • Little predictable

The Plot / Story:

 

Royce, a mercenary who reluctantly leads a group of elite warriors who come to realize they’ve been brought together on an alien planet… as prey. With the exception of a disgraced physician, they are all cold-blooded killers mercenaries, Yakuza, convicts, death squad members human “predators” that are now being systemically hunted and eliminated by a new breed of alien Predators.  (Wikipedia) (official site)

Trailer

 

Role Models Review

 

Tech Wolf brought over Role Models this past weekend and we really enjoyed it.  I would give it a 9 out of 10.  A definite owner with plenty of rewatchability.

This is a great movie about fandom, passion and embracing that which makes you happy in life no matter what others might think.  Add in KISS to the mix and it rocks! 

It brought back fond memories of when I hung out with members of the SCA (Society for Creative Anachronism) and battled in arms with them.  It also brought back the nights of the Vampire LARP (Live Action Role Playing).

Likes

  • Acting:  including the child actors both Christopher Mintz-Plasse as Augie Farques and Bobb'e J. Thompson as Ronnie Shields did a great job
  • Funny and entertaining
  • Irreverent but not disrespectful
  • Fandom
  • KISS references

Plot / Story: 

The world's least-likely mentors, Danny (Paul Rudd) & Wheeler (Seann William Scott) must put aside their selfish, sarcastic and party-driven ways in order to give two odd, foul-mouthed kids invaluable wisdom about life, love and heavy metal.

Trailer

Battle: Los Angeles Review

Battle: Los Angeles is a bad alien invasion movie.  I give it 2.5 out of 10.  Overall this movie has some interesting ideas behind it with some nice details.  Unfortunately that is overshadowed by some major flaws in execution.  Unfortunately I wish the people who put together the amazing trailer for this movie would have been in charge of the entire film.  Don’t bother watching it save your money and time. 

What I expected to find is

  • Action lots of action
  • Explosions, I said lots of action including explosions so many to make Michael Bay proud.
  • Cool aliens, they should at lest visually be stunning.
  • Cool alien tech preferably attached to the action and mecha / giant killer robots a plus.
  • A fun movie

What I got was action teasing that promised but made me wait too long to deliver.  There are a lot of explosions but by then I was too bored to be that excited in them.  The aliens are neat and there are some cool details about them.  The alien tech was lacking and no more impressive then what we already have on this planet, they did travel across the universe to attack us.  Not a fun movie.

Battle: Los Angeles has a nice start with action and explosions promising a good alien invasion movie.  This was sadly replaced with over 15 minutes of boring, slow paced, unnecessary character development and melodrama.  After almost putting me to sleep we got back to the fight. 

The character development piece failed in bonding me to the characters and instead made me angry at the characters and more to the source with the writers for wasting time and excitement on character tropes that could just as easily been presumed.  After all the lead character could have just said “I’m getting too old for this shit” and done away with 5 minutes of the beginning plus I might have chuckled at the line.

Problems with Poor cinematography.  They tried to go for a jerky camera style to add to the tension, excitement and first person perspective.  A neat idea if pulled off well but for some reason some directors think that I’m a bobblehead doll.  In the heat of action I do not jerk my point of view around and stay out of focus in fact things tend to be more in focus and my point of view does not jostle that much even running.  Instead in this film there was a lot of jerky camera action and out of focus moments broke the immaculate reality.  They would have been better off just giving us a third person view at that point.

The roller-coaster pacing left me angry and in the end made this a boring alien invasion movie.  Bang!  Explosions with promise of action for a few minutes followed by 15 minutes of non action, that is just the beginning of the film.  There were moments of intense cool action but those were followed by major lows of boring narration and agonizing melodramatic moments. 

Likes

  • The start was exciting giving promise of action, explosions, and aliens
  • When there was action it was exciting, just unfortunately punctuated by long moments of boring narration and melodrama
  • They had some neat details like the alien anatomy and flyers

Dislikes

  • After the short beginning there was 15 minutes of slow paced narration and unnecessary character development.
  • Poor cinematography
  • Roller-coaster pacing
  • Too much melodrama:  I actually like and watch some really melodramatic shows but this crap was out of place and too much even for me.
  • Too much narration
  • Lacks tension



Seeker's Guide to Harry Potter

I didn't know exactly what to expect when I saw that the Seeker's Guide to Harry Potter was up on Netflix Instant View, but I thought would give it a try. Part of me is glad I did, but the other part wants to slap me silly.

I am a sucker for this kind of documentary, and I have watched more than my fair share, but the idea of a philosophical look at the themes of Harry Potter looking at both the Christian and Occult symbolism of the work just sounded interesting.

As I expected, the occult perspective came from a Golden Dawn angle. In fact, the host performs the Lesser Banishing Ritual of the Pentagram twice.

While there is a lot I could talk about, I can sum it up by saying that the film is Lord of the Rings unnecessary pan shots of locations around Edinborough and in a library that are often not explained. The content borders on the superficially new age, but from time to time they point out something that made me think for a moment.

It is not the best movie, and I cannot really recommend it. I rated it a 3 of 5 stars, or meh. If you find the topic interesting and have patience to endure the slow spots, check it out. But if you don't, then don't feel like you missed much.

Manhwa Review: Evil's Return

Author Jong-Kyu Lee and artist Hwan Shin bring us, Evil's Return. Every young girl thinks that something evil has taken over her body when she gets her first period but in Yumi’s case, it just happens to be true. This coming of age tale has everything a teen novel should, with a little demon mixed in. Yumi’s boyfriend, Sunwoo, is a long-haired hottie who all the girls are ga-ga over. He is obsessed with Yumi’s safety, which becomes more important when her “evil” period shows up. With it come hordes of baddies to kill her or make her their evil queen. Sunwoo gives her protection spells, but they can’t warn off the first devil woman who comes a-callin’. The ultimate big boobed baddy tries to hit on Sunwoo at first, but he banishes her with a spell. Meanwhile, a scary possessed teacher lures Yumi into a classroom and these evil spirits who look like a cross between zombies and vampires attack her.

In volume two, we learn that Yumi is pure blood. It is said that both the Virgin Mother Mary and Lilith, Satan’s wife, were pure blood. It all depends on if the woman is filled with light or darkness, and that is the way the next 1000 years will be ruled. Volume two is mostly fighting scenes, which took a little away from the story for me.

The art work and style of this series is contradicting to me because the inside features the good old Japanese style school uniforms, but the covers look like something off a 1980’s heavy metal band cover. Even the book blurb on the back sounds like a metal music video opening.

When the floodgates of Yumi’s womanhood burst open, demons rush in, clamoring to make the high school senior the mother of evil itself.

All hail Iron Maiden and all that. It’s strange to me how these two styles mix. This is definitely not a kids book with the graphic language and panty/boob shots. There aren’t any extras, but you won’t need them with these action-packed volumes.

One confusing thing about the art in this series is that sometimes they have the same character in the same frame doing two different things, so you might think… “Is that him split in two?” Or, “Who’s that new guy who looks exactly like Sunwoo? Does he have a twin?” But in battle scenes, this is a cool effect because it makes it like still shots of DBZ fights.

The Evil’s Return series is hard to find, but a few used copies can be found here and there on the web, including at Amazon.com.

Manga Review: Nightmares For Sale by Karou Ohashi

Nightmares For Sale, or Akuma no Omise: Shadow & Maria, is about a pawn shop that specializes in buying items that are evil. I thought I would like this manga for just that reason, but the devil-like pawn shop owner and his sassy doll assistant trick people into scams that they can’t possibly win, often costing them friendship or life. I found this to be a depressing book with sad stories. One story is about a beautiful woman who wants to be a model, but doesn’t photograph well. She is told that for a price she can photograph well, but that it is draining. She is soon in every magazine around the world, getting jobs left and right, but every camera that takes her picture drains life from her.  Only weeks later she is an old haggard lady and some paparazzi try to take her photo, which causes her death.

There are tales of friendship rings causing friends to be hateful to one another and an aborted son torturing his mother from the grave. Nightmares for sale is right! But don’t dare go near that pawn shop. You may come out wanting to off yourself without even buying anything!

The cover is deceivingly innocent. The art in this book is modern and the printing quality is clean and easy to read. For such a tame manga, it has a surprising use of bad language.

If you’re into tales where people taunt people to death or cause their lives to become utterly miserable just for the hell of it, this book is for you.

Exploring: Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows

Plot / Story:

Based on Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows (Book 7), part 1 begins as Harry, Ron and Hermione set out on their perilous mission to track down and destroy the secret to Voldemort's immortality and destruction—the Horcruxes. On their own, without the guidance of their professors or the protection of Professor Dumbledore, the three friends must now rely on one another more than ever. But there are Dark Forces in their midst that threaten to tear them apart.

Meanwhile, the wizarding world has become a dangerous place for all enemies of the Dark Lord. The long-feared war has begun and Voldemort's Death Eaters seize control of the Ministry of Magic and even Hogwarts, terrorizing and arresting anyone who might oppose them. But the one prize they still seek is the one most valuable to Voldemort: Harry Potter. The Chosen One has become the hunted one as the Death Eaters search for Harry with orders to bring him to Voldemort...alive.

Harry's only hope is to find the Horcruxes before Voldemort finds him. But as he searches for clues, he uncovers an old and almost forgotten tale—the legend of the Deathly Hallows. And if the legend turns out to be true, it could give Voldemort the ultimate power he seeks.

Little does Harry know that his future has already been decided by his past when, on that fateful day, he became "the Boy Who Lived." No longer just a boy, Harry Potter is drawing ever closer to the task for which he has been preparing since the day he first stepped into Hogwarts: the ultimate battle with Voldemort.

  • Release Date:   Part I: 19 November 2010   Part II:  15 July 2011
  • Listed as:   Fantasy, Adventure
  • Studio:   Warner Bros. Pictures
  • Director:   David Yates
  • Produced by:   David Heyman, David Barron
  • Written by:   Screenplay: Steve Kloves  Novel: J. K. Rowling
  • Stars:  Daniel Radcliffe, Rupert Grint, Emma Watson, Ralph Fiennes

Pictures

Harry Potter faces Voldemort

Trailer


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Exploring: The Last Airbender

Review

I really enjoyed The Last Airbender, 9 out of 10.  It is a good distillation of 22 hours of show down to just under 2 hours of movie.

Great movie for fans of the show and those who like fun, adventure, action movies.  Those who hate it will do so because either they forgot how to have fun, they don't get the choices made based on the Eastern philosophy that permeates this project or because the avatar does not give into violence.

Concerning Racebending:  After watching The Last Airbender I can let the Racebending issue slide because there is so many other good socially redeeming aspects and lessons in it.

I like some of the changes made especially the ending.  The ending in the show bothered me because the Avatar gives into rage and anger killing many as he looses control.  This does bother him in the second season and was originally done as a subplot of the avatar learning how to fight back but with non violent resistance.  In the movie he does not lash out in rage but instead brilliantly faces his justified emotions and lets them pass through him sublimating them into something constructive and also demonstrating a full mastery and understanding of Waterbending.

There are several scenes depicted in the trailers that did not appear in the movie.  Some of those scenes are the Kyoshi Island warriors, the pirates, and Bumi.  At first this confused me then Eric pointed out that we may get a longer version for the directors cut with those scenes in it.

  • Appa and Momo are great
  • They changed the ending for the better
  • Did a goog job condensing 22 hours into 2
  • Katara was well acted Nicola Peltz did a good job of capturing her sadness with out making her Emo or Mopey
  • I love the foreshadowing of General Iroh The Dragon of the West

First Impressions

Theater:  I love the series that this movie is based on.  The movie trailers looks great.  Other then the race bending possible issues I’m really looking forward to watching this movie.

Trailers

more trailers

The Plot / Story:

Based on the first season of the show The Book of Water Avatar The Last Airbender.  Air, Water, Earth, Fire. Four nations tied by destiny when the Fire Nation launches a brutal war against the others. A century has passed with no hope in sight to change the path of destruction. Caught between combat and courage, Aang discovers he is the lone Avatar with the power to manipulate all four elements. Aang teams with Katara a waterbender, and her brother, Sokka, to restore balance to their war-torn world.  (Wikipedia) (The Official Site)

  • Release Date:  JULY 1
  • Listed as:  action-adventure, fantasy, film
  • Studio:  Paramount Pictures
  • Director:  M. Night Shyamalan
  • Produced by:  M. Night Shyamalan, Frank Marshall, Kathleen Kennedy, Sam Mercer, scott Aversano
  • Written by:  M. Night Shyamalan,
  • Stars:  Noah Ringer, Nicola Peltz, Dev Patel, Jackson Rathbone, Shaun Toub, Aasif Mandvi, Cliff Curtis

Other Posts

Racebending

Photos

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  • New High Resolution Photos: The Last Airbender (via /Film)

Book Review: Dawn of the Dreadfuls

In honor of Father’s Day, I want to talk about what a good father does in times of crisis.

Does he throw caution to the wind and protect his children above all else? Yes.

Does he deny society standards to give his children the tools to defend themselves in case he is devoured by zombies? Yes.

And finally, does he take pride in a brood of his own progeny that can defeat flesh hungry adversaries at every pass? Absolutely.

Mr. Bennet was such a man and I’d like to suggest Dawn of the Dreadfuls as an example, nay, an instruction manual for the fathers of today. For the modern father faces many of the challenges that Mr. Bennet did.

In Dawn of the Dreadfuls, you will learn how to coach your offspring to greatness.

Mr. Bennett assumed the Spread Eagle Stance, scowled, and bellowed, “HAA-IEEEEEEEEEEE!” ….he asked Jane to try a cry of her own. “Haiee,” she said. “Did you hear that, girls?” Mr. Bennett cupped a hand to his right ear. “I do believe a mouse just coughed... Your battle cry does more than announce your presence… it unchains the tiger within.”

You will learn the proper thing to say when society questions your motives.

“…You mean to have her---? ...She’s but a child!” “Childhood is a luxury we can no longer afford.”

And, you will learn how to show your children the proper way to dispatch unmentionables to the fiery pits of hell.

“Run out to the tool shed and fetch along the biggest pair of shears you can.”

Dawn of the Dreadfuls is an exciting, entertaining romp through Jane Austen’s England where zombies have infected the masses. Author Steve Hockensmith has a way of making zombie attacks funny and the combat training funnier! For Austenites, you will love to see your favorite characters in a new light, before the famed Pride and Prejudice story commenced. Did you know that Jane was once courted by a plump, arrogant, coward? Have you read of Elizabeth’s infatuation with the most highly regarded martial arts master? All of this and more awaits you in the pages of Dawn of the Dreadfuls, the prequel to Pride and Prejudice and Zombies.

It is a truth universally acknowledged that a zombie in possession of brains, must be in want of more brains.

Both Dawn of the Dreadfuls and Pride and Prejudice and Zombies are available now at Amazon.com.

*Author’s note: I have not reviewed Pride and Prejudice and Zombies because although I enjoyed it, I think readers will like this book better. P&P&Z is no doubt revolutionary and entertaining, but if you are a passionate JA fan, you may become bored with the retelling, despite the gooey zombie center. If you are not a JA reader, I recommend both books, but begin with Dawn of the Dreadfuls first.

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Exploring: Alice in Wonderland 2010

Exploring: Alice in Wonderland (2010)

[reus name="Alice In Wonderland iFrame"]

The Plot / Story:

This movie is a continuation of Alice’s adventures picking up 10 years after she has left Wonderland and forgotten the earlier visit.  She returns and learns that she must help the inhabitants to slay the Jabberwocky, the dragon who terrorizes the inhabitants of Wonderland under the rule of the Red Queen. (Wikipedia) (The Official Site)

Review

6out of 10

Overall Alice in Wonderland was good but not great.  I would own it but not rush out to get it right away.  It failed to live up to the expectations for a movie with such a gifted cast and director behind it.

Where was the wonderland in this movie?  I got the feel that Tim Burton's heart was not in the movie.  After all he gave us Batman, Beetle Juice and Nightmare Before Christmas all of which brought much wonder to the settings.  Even the animated Disney film had much more wonder to it's Wonderland.  I also had the strong feeling that this movie was focused grouped and polished too much.  This one felt more like the Lion the Witch and Wonderland than and Alice in Wonderland story.

Overall Alice in Wonderland was not bad it just should have been much better.  I will watch it again and look forward to seeing if there are missing scenes on the DVD.  I  wish they could go back and redo it, maybe give us a directors cut with feeling.

Likes

  • The Music was great
  • had some beautiful scenes
  • the Cheshire cat, Jabberwocky, red and white queen, all looked good

Concerns Addressed

  • Jonny Depp’s Mad Hatter coming across more like his Captain Jack character:  Through out most of the movie he played a brilliant Mad Hatter.  Although he did seem more like captain jack in the tea party scene this may also have been the influence from the 3D effects.
  • Tim Burton's heart was not in the film, it should have been creepier, weirder and more bizarre
  • had a focused group feel, too shiny
  • Anne Hathaway seemed unrehearsed and ill prepared which was odd for the character who would have been overly rehearsed and overly prepared
  • The ending seemed like so much claptrap, have we forgotten how to end the film.  Alice came off totally unhinged why would I trust her as a business partner

Trailer

First Impressions

Under Tim Burton’s direction I expect Alice in Wonderland to be a dark and strange trip down the rabbit hole.  The music should also be very good under Danny Elfman’s direction.  The cast involved in the project is stellar though there is concern over Jonny Depp’s Mad Hatter coming across more like his Captain Jack character.  The problem I’ve had so far is how some of the characters look from the posters and trailers, especially the Cheshire Cat who is my favorite character.  I expect some of this is due to Disney’s push to make this a 3D movie.  The pros outweigh the con’s so Alice in Wonderland is still a theater for me.

The Basics

  • Studio:  Walt Disney Pictures
  • Director: Tim Burton
  • Music by:     Danny Elfman
  • Produced by:  Richard D. Zanuck, Joe Roth, Suzanne Todd, Jennifer Todd
  • Written by:  Linda Woolverton
  • Stars:  Mia Wasikowska, Johnny Depp, Anne Hathaway, Helena Bonham Carter, Crispin Glover, Michael Sheen, Stephen Fry

Get your copy here:

Iron Meh 2

Samuel L. Jackson as Nick Fury.
Image via Wikipedia

Review of Iron Man 2

Overall Rating: 6 out of 10

Iron Man 2 not as bad as Spider Man 3 but falls into same quality category as Electra and Daredevil.  It sits on the fence and was focused group to death.  If only it would have had a strong story line or just abandoned that and been all action it would have been a much better film.  This is a renter.

Likes

  1. Scarlett Johansson stole the show with Black widow she is amazing.  Her action scenes were not only great action full of fun gadgets but they bring in an erotic element.
  2. Samuel L. Jackson was brilliant as Nick fury he rocked.
  3. Mickey Rourke as Ivan Vanko has an interesting character who is worth watching.  Rourke's homework paid off I love all of the small nuances he gave to the character.
  4. Wonder twins power activate: When Iron Man and War Machine would shoot at each other at the same time I laughed and thought "wonder twins power activate

Dislikes / Concerns

  1. Intro credits were a disappointment.  Marvel is known for telling an amazing pre-story in their roll in credits and even the Loosers has an amazing intro it should have been a warning for the movie to follow.
  2. Slow Intro:  the movie was boring and horrible until the fight scene between Iron Man and War Machine at Tony Stark's party
  3. Effects were a hit and miss probably because it took 8 special effects companies.  The whole race car scene was atrocious, the physics were horribly off and many parts looked plastic like.
  4. Whiplash first fight didn't make sense why didn't the car crush him and when Tony Starks car crashes they had a piece of shrapnel's vector was off flying through his head damaging the car behind him but not effecting him at all, they even have his head hit the pavement which should have killed him but no effect.
  5. Smashing someone with a car against concrete wall should spill guts especially if repeated.  Though Tech Wolf pointed out that maybe Whiplash is actually Omega Red and then it makes sense
  6. Sam Rockwell complete disappointment
  7. Robert Downey Jr. appears to have "phoned in" his performance which is sad he is usually a brilliant  actor who did not even hold his own in the scene with Samuel L. Jackson.
  8. The final explosions in the movie looked like fireworks
  9. Rhodey was a dusche in the movie
  10. The writing is horrible:  the A plot line between Justin Hammer and Tony Stark was weak and should have been a B or C line.  Tony Stark's father and Shield should have been the A plot line
  11. I found the use of Captain American's shield offensive

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Manga, A Few Disappointments

I don’t usually like to write bad reviews because I feel like they are a waste of my time. Why would I want to waste my time writing a review on a book that I didn’t enjoy reading in the first place?  To warn you about them.  I have three mangas to warn you about with one that I was so eager to read, but fell short of my expectations.

Pantheon High by Paul Benjamin & Steven Cummings

This is a book for someone more into super heroes and mythology than I am.

They introduce too many characters in a short period of time. You don’t get enough time or information to care about any of them. Without in-depth knowledge of all the pantheons (Greek, Roman, Egyptian, etc…) you won’t get the inside jokes they make about the gods and their offspring.  There are way too many boob and butt grabs and premature boy fantasy panty shots. The slang is overly ghetto speech as if an adult is trying to mimic how “those kids today” talk. There is an annoying girl trying to speak Buffy speech with comments like, "Rude much?", "You aren't blogworthy.", and "dorks.com" but it's not working.

The art isn’t that bad and there is a cool part where they show the students report cards with grades, parents names (usually gods), achievements, and evaluations. How ever cool those snaps are, it doesn’t outweigh the annoying childish jokes and raunchy humor.

Descendants of Darkness by Yami no Matsuei

Way too much chibi in this book.

It’s supposed to be about shimigami, which we know from Death Note are scary as hell and we know from Dead Like Me, can be funny. But these shimigami are neither funny or scary.

It portrays life after death being run like a corporation, which could be kinda cool if they did it the way Beetlejuice does, but they don’t. Who wants to think life after death is in a boring office building? Snooze! To top it all off there are these strange birds who work in the office that appear to be owls in kimonos. Very strange.

The only thing that saves this tale is 3-5 pages at the end where an evil Doctor is introduced, but even this part makes no sense. I’m told the series gets better in volume two, but I’m not willing to spend time finding out.

IDOL by Dany & Dany

I am so sad that I have to write this about Dany & Dany. They are awesome Yaoi authors and I absolutely adore their manga book Anima, but for some reason I just couldn't get into Idol.

The printing is bad, which could mean it was done earlier in their career.

This is a basic man loves hooker story where the hooker kills a bad guy with the audacity to run over his favorite customer, an artist who he falls in love with.

The sneak peek in the back features a tale about an actor falling in love. I wasn’t thrilled with the art, the story or the characters… but the ad in the back for Dany & Dany’s The Lily and the Rose, has me hoping that one will restore my faith in them.

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The Camp and Fun of Planet 51

Planet 51
Image via Wikipedia

Review: Planet 51

Imagine a typical science fiction alien invasion movie from the 1950's .  Now take that tale and turn it inside out add in fun and even more camp.  That is the premise for Planet 51.  We rented it through netflix had so much fun, fell in love with the movie and bought it.

Planet 51 got really bad reviews from the critics when it came out.  Initially those reviews made me hesitant to watch the movie but I'm so glad I didn't listen to the critics.  Thank God we are not so jaded that we would miss this warm, inviting, friendly and fun movie that brought us so joy.

This is a family movie not a kiddie movie.  There are a lot of fun little bits in it for the kids but also in the traditional style of the Walt Disney movies there are a lot of stuff in it for adults to enjoy too.  The stuff for adults is well hidden mainly through referential humor to adult movies and shows so only adults would get it.  There are also a fair bit of dirty jokes for the parents that is well hidden like how they did in Aladan.

Eric said it best by describing this movie as being like hoodwinked for sci-fi.

Likes

  • the alien dog:  "In space no one can here you scream"
  • voice cast is incredible:  Dwayne Johnson, Jessica Biel, Justin Long, Seann William Scott, Gary Oldman, John Cleese
  • Great exploration of the issue of terror in media
  • rover… he loves rocks!
  • The alien deterrent to protect you from probes.

Critiques

  • It's not Shakespeare

Planet 51 is an owner, get your copy here / Rent it

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How John May Lives

V season one episode 7 "John May" is a good episode that moves the main story forward.  I give "John May" an 8 out of 10 rating.  For the audio review check out Fandom Today #451 “Who Will Help The Sane”.  Watch V streaming online below.

For those who have given up on V I challenge you to give them a try.  Stick it out past the first few episodes.  This series gets better after the characters find their voice and the main story arc picks up speed.  There is still some difficulty getting into many of the characters but some of the themes are quite interesting.

In this episode we learn more about John May the visitor who started the revolution and introduced others toward emotions.  I like some of the choices they made with how his son reacted to one of the big reveals in the episode.  They took it in a direction that was not typical but still felt natural.  I hope to see more of John May's son.

They bring up the theme of Anna's failure.  She has a ghost haunting her in the form of a meme.  When first facing this message she attacked it and killed those spreading it.  This is not the way to destroy a meme and as expected the meme merely added martyrs to its cause.  I find this reoccurring theme in V interesting and look forward to more of the exploration into propaganda and meme wars.

I liked how they air a lot of the resistance members and Anna's secrets.  By typing their hand early to the audience they will have to rely on story elements for future surprises rather than the typical gimmick of the big reveal.

What do you think happened to Ryan Nichols wife?

[reus name="Visitors"]

Free eBook Review: Ivory by Steve Merrifield

From the looks of the cover of this free eBook, you might suspect Ivory is a horror book, and it is, but in a way you could never imagine. This new book is surprisingly engaging and better than those I’ve read straight from the bookstore shelves. Ivory is a mute girl who bewitches anyone she comes into contact with. When Martin runs into her with his car, she captivates him and causes him to find the artistic creativity he thought he’d lost forever.

Stranger than her lack of injuries is Ivory’s striking physical appearance with stark white hair and skin, and jet black eyes.

Finding she is a prostitute, Martin provides her with the means to live without the dangerous profession. He encourages her to get off the streets and away from men that may harm her, abuse her, or take advantage of her.

There are hints at Ivory being special, but is she immortal or merely nature's most precious creation?  One thing is sure, there is more to Ivory than her absolute beauty. Why does she have such power over all those who see her? Does she have the power to turn burnouts into award winners? Gay men straight? Law-abiding citizens into murders? Perhaps. But at what price? The question Martin has to ask himself is… Is she worth the loss of his family, his job, and his sanity?

I enjoyed this romp through London’s underworld and felt as if I was right there in the car with Martin as he realized the world as he knew it was coming to an end. This chilling read takes you through the artistic mind of a genius, the crooked world of prostitution, and the mysterious atmosphere of voodoo ritual.

Some of you are scared to try free eBooks because they might be badly edited or riddled with typos or even be written horribly. Ivory had none of these faults. This book is awesome and I encourage all of you with a digital device, or an interest in reading online to check out Ivory. It’s free. You really have nothing to lose. If you enjoy it, please leave a review for this brilliant new talent to let other readers know.

You can find Ivory free at Smashwords.com