Thursday, January 31, 2019

Daphne & Velma

Well shit, that was actually really good.

I mean with the track record of live action Scooby-Doo movies, I was wary of this but at the same time I was interested to see it. A Daphne and Velma solo movie, totally original. To a fan that's something incredibly new and boy did that transfer through the entire film. It is so new and in a franchise like Scooby-Doo the bits of innovation and formula breaking are incredibly welcome. They really do fashion a whole new sort of world for these characters and make new characters. Daphne is a world trekking, intelligent girl who fully believes in the supernatural and has a penchant for aliens. Which is absolutely hilarious in some scenes! And Velma is so new yet so original, it really reminds me of the Mystery Incorporated character because she's kind of a rubbish people person and really is more of that lone wolf nerd in highschool, she's a technical genius that actually shys away from her intelligence. That's something we've never seen before. And it doesn't feel forced or a trope, you can buy that these girls would be the way they are because of their environment they live in. It's pretty great, and the movie continues being something new to the series. Daphne has just moved to California and has taken to a new highschool that borders on almost cult-y due to their love for a tech mogul who actually beta tests all his new inventions which I could argue all day due to safety of students but the visual look is something all it's own. This is the most tech savvy school in history, (not)hoverboards as a regular means of transport, drones used for cameras, interactive phones directly linked to their education placement. It's a technological wonderland which sets up the sort of out there world further pushed by the comedy. The comedy is great, I was shocked how much dialogue actually got me to laugh a touch loud, it's a joy to watch. But slowly student after student suffers from well for lack of a better word a brain drain, sending our young detectives to unravel the mystery. A weird sort of opinion I had but I swear this movie would be so at home on Netflix, like really from the credits it felt like a Netflix produced movie that possibly could even be a series. If you watch it you might catch on to what I mean, but this is seriously a movie I would have watched in highschool, enjoying a lazy fall day just watching this. And the movie is a touch ridiculous but honestly with this bizzaro world they made it didn't feel out of place, everything worked very well in this movie. Also PS. The girls are great in this and I would have no problem seeing them again in another movie or even a series, they did mighty good! And another odd note I must contribute is during just a brief brush up on the movie, it was actually compared stylistically to a movie called Ghost World yet another film I've never seen but it has my girl Scarlett so I might check it out soon. I don't know, I just absolutely loved this movie, I loved the updates and sort of a clean slate for these characters, the humor was aces for me, I liked the semi-ridiculous style they did, I just, guys this was really surprisingly good! And if I'm being embarassingly honest, I....wouldn't mind buying it. I know it's the fan deep inside me, but I digged it man, it was such a pleasant and fun surprise from a grim and skull peeling start. So trust me, I have nothing but love and respect for this film. If you got kids who really love Scooby-Doo or if you're a fan who wants something new, give this a shot. You may be surprised as I was.

Wednesday, January 30, 2019

Scooby-Doo Monsters Unleashed

Now that, was unexpected.

It's like....good? It's like pretty good? Maybe because they actually took the 2 year gap between movies to seriously re-evaluate the last movie. Like every massive bomb point from the last movie has been significantly approved on. I actually laughed! It was really funny! I was shocked at how much I was genuinely enjoying myself. Okay so they do the usual but with some good and fun twists, Coolsville has just opened a museum dedicated to the closed cases of Mystery Inc. housing the costumes of all the villains from the shows but a new villain has appeared ready to tear Mystery Incorporated's reputation to shreds and re-animate the costumes as living monsters sending our gang into action once more. I get the feeling after the, ahem, less than popular first movie they decided to kinda go back to the roots of the show, the gang look very much how they did in the show with modern updates, they showcase several well known villains of the series, and honestly looking back the show Mystery Incorporated took some elements from this and built upon it incredibly so. The characters have gotten better, Shaggy and Scooby actually kind of question their silly personalities and try to be more serious, Daphne actually has character this time and Sarah actually gets to spread her wings a bit in the part which is actually quite nice, Fred, oh Fred you actually were fun and great and to be honest and I'm probably going to kick myself in the ass for this but...I kinda got a Steve from Blue's Clues vibe from him you know kinda dopey but still likable and even funny, and of course my sun, my moon, my star lit sky Velma and ohhhh my lord she somehow got even better! And we have a new character played by Seth Green who really does give it his all and the relationship between him and Velma is adorable, and leads to interesting scene. I mean, damn. But uh, yeah serious major upgrade for the characters and the writing has also been given more time and effort and it genuinely works, you actually do get the feeling they were having more fun with this movie probably because it's simple, clean, and enjoyable. So yeah, kind of a complete flip from last movie but I don't lie, the movie works. Sure it has a more crass joke but honestly 90% of the humor is just the dialogue. And the visuals aren't bad either, again going for a more practical feel with CG used sparingly, even though some of the monsters are completely CG you can tell others where legitimate costumes that were enhanced slightly so again I must commend the filmmakers on that. I feel it's more just a movie for the fans, you get a healthy dose of fanservice (You stop that line of thinking right now!), it fits more the classic characters with a smidge of depth, actually good humor, fun escapades, and a mystery that would feel right at home in one of the animated movies. So yeah I had fun, and if you got kids who really like Scooby-Doo or if you're a hardcore fan like myself this isn't a bad movie to see again.

So what the hell, we'll do one more since I don't really have a new movie to see for a bit and I'm actually in a good mood and hopeful for the next one, so join me tomorrow for the newest excursion into live action filmmaking, Daphne & Velma.

Tuesday, January 29, 2019

Scooby-Doo (2002)

Okay this actually warrants explanation. I hadn't the faintest clue what to do this week, and as I'm living my day to day Duder life I keep seeing these damn posts from a friend of mine about this movie. And the more I thought about it the more I needed to rant about something, and in fact I've been in this mood for quite some time so let's go!

Oh God. Tis' a sad day when one has to talk about the live action Scooby-Doo movies. I gotta be honest, I ate this shit up when I was 7 years old seeing this movie in the theater and just thank your lucky stars my movie taste got better! And man did this movie age as fine as NSYNC, calling people "dog", and that weird stilted slow-mo effect that thankfully died. I have never seen a movie so dated in early 2000s (there's no better word for it) embarassment it's almost a marvel. Try and watch this movie without 1. Rolling your eyes, 2. Facepalming, 3. Drinking heavily, and PS. I've failed miserably at this game. I'm almost 1000% certain this movie was made to sell a soundtrack, and to be perfectly honest I only heard one song that was not white noise to my ears and I don't even know the name of it! Also fair warning, this might be my longest review yet due to MASSIVE retrospective viewing of the series, me, and my better ideas for the movie. So where do I truly begin? about the good stuff though brief they are. I actually gave Matthew Lillard a lot of shit for this movie but honestly looking back and giving him some real love for his voice over work recently in the series, he is a awesome Shaggy. He really does get the character down and his interactions with Scooby are easily the best part of the movie (except for that one scene that shall not be named), he's funny, gets the character incredibly well, and has the most believable and enjoyable relationship with Scooby than any other human being in the movie. I dig the use of practical sets and effects and they only really use CG if it's absolutely necessary, and I can't honestly give good grief over how Scoob looks, they adapted a 2D cartoon character who's very exaggerated and cartoony with the best CG they had at that time so they tried their best to make it work so I shall not shun the look of Scooby. However! The rest of the CGI euuuggghhh it needed more render time. Oh and that voodoo dude was absolutely great, it's like he knew what movie he was in and decided to just say whatever, and yet it's really funny and truthful at the same time, I wish we saw him more. Goodbye voodoo dude, you were a true joy in this movie! The true shining star of this whole movie from beginning to end is Linda Cardellini as Velma. Now if you'll excuse me I will shamelessly praise her for the next few longwinded sentences. Oh lord...we thank you for this actress and the outstanding potrayal of a lesser recognized and beloved character. She is glorious, she's witty and clever, she's funny and actually gives her all to this character, and oh sweet celestial beings she is ******* gorgeous!! I mean, damn Velms! Lord have mercy, someone get me a glass of ice water I'm about to overheat, mm mmm mmm. But enough about that, let's talk about the ehhhh things. Okay Mr. Screenwriter who if you look him up you will be dumbfounded as I am, I understand the changes you did for Daphne. I can even slightly appreciate it but you still done ****** it up! Okay so they get the supreme asskicking queen herself Sarah Michelle Gellar as Daphne, literally off the set of Buffy and get her to be a black belt trained Daphne who is tired of being the damsel in distress. Which I personally never got, I mean you go back to watching those shows and honestly Daphne doesn't get kidnapped that much, hell no one gets taken captive more than Shaggy and Scooby so....whoops I guess! But they ruin her character. Now let's be real here, even as a hardcore Scooby-Doo fan, there's not that much character to the gang. You have the leader, the girl next door, the brains, and the comic relief. Now granted they built on that through now literally 50 years of show (wow), but they make her this ditzy valley girl almost useless chick. She kicks a door down and beats up one guy. Move aside Ellen Ripley, Xena, Wonder Woman, there's a new sherrif in these here parts!! Good intentions but absolute garbage delivery. Fred is bland, no disrespect to the actor, he just didn't have that much going for him but I will say that little foot stamp in the woods; priceless. And now we get to the bad. Joy of joys. Story time! So we pick up on the tail end of a mystery, the gang just got another crook and the police still condone vigilante justice from sleuth detectives maybe because they were endorsed by Pamela fraking Anderson!! I am soooo not making that up, Pamela Anderson is in this movie, probably just to reassure the audience that the nails in the coffin have been properly set. She's not even playing a character, it's just Pam as Pam in a nonsensical and completely pointless cameo. Whatever. Moving on. And are you ready for some buuullshit? The gang then decide they quit. Huuuhhhh?? Wha-wha-why? There is no setup to it, they're just like, "Op I quit, peace bitch!" and you have so not even earned this you don't even get a participation trophy. So they quit for mysterious reasons that even the screenwriter couldn't solve and we flash to 3 years later. Fred has been on a book tour, Velma has been working with NASA, Daphne has been training with Ra's Al Ghul in the Himalayas or some shit, and Shag and Scoob have been well...Shag and Scoob. And they all get invited to a, let me get this straight, a theme park based on some abstract weird creepy shit that I have no idea what it is, that is run by Rowan Atkinson who is completely wasted in his part (we'll get to him later) with help from an admittedly kinda creepy and memorable right hand man, AND a luchadore wrestler.....okay. And it turns out the theme park is secretly a cult where they summon a more fake looking CG bunny from Donnie Darko who can't survive in sunlight because of the Mogwai gene in them so they possess people's bodies as like this far out new sunscreen trick, are you with me so far? Oh and they steal people's souls like Shang Tsung did I mention that? This gets complicated so fast and the payoff is so not worth it! And this is where the movie completely falls off the deep end because it is so not Scooby-Doo. Now you might be saying no shit Dude they're fighting demons, but they've done supernatural stuff before and it worked in many ways. Witch's Ghost for example, they fought the ghost of a witch with the help of my taste in women-uh, I mean Thorn and that was awesome! And I can pin it down to 2, maybe 3 big points. The threat was dangerous, and these bunny demons are so not a problem and hold no threat, they are more slapsticky and cartoonish than Scooby. Now I'm not saying comic relief can't be done, there was a Wizard Of Oz reference and them threatning to baste a giant turkey in The Witch's Ghost but here there's no menace in any respect except that tatted up dude but he doesn't really do much and the comedy is insufferable with these creatures. Second, the whole reveal is the fact that the person who wants to summon demons, take over the world, and envelop the Earth in 10,000 years of darkness, is Scrappy-Doo. Hwhat??? And guess why? Come on guess. Throw out anything. You ready? You're not but here we go. He does alllll of that to get revenge on Mystery Inc. for dumping him because he was an annoying ****. News flash! You already won 3 years before this potdream began. Mystery Inc. disbanded, they quit, they left, they were done so may I ask whyyy you're doing this?? My head hurts now. Some would call this movie a mixed bag but there's so much stupid caked on layer after layer after layer, it just fails. You get a comedic actor like Rowan Atkinson and give him nothing to do, he got one laugh out of me and that is a crime in my eyes. And do you know who they wanted to get for the part? Tim Curry! And he said no! For the reason it had Scrappy in it because he's a big fan of the series (And come on no one likes Scrappy, even Cartoon Network throws Scrappy under the eighteen wheeler.) that's why he gave it 120 beautiful percent as Ben Ravencroft, but I suspect he didn't like the script either and got out. Oh my God, I almost forgot this and you need to see it with your own eyes. Okay go to the IMDB page of this movie and click on the images tab. Not only is there essentially an appreciation volley of Linda Cardellini but the very first image is not from the movie. I dare even say what you all will think, and state it is from a porn parody because well the site name is um...what's the word? Obvious. And that is clearly not Linda in the picture soooo, yeah. That was just something I noticed and had to tell you cause that got a massive kick out of me. Wow, how did we sink this low? To me, this hurts, to others it's just another subpar/bad movie. Scooby-Doo is my favorite cartoon ever, it means the world to me, pretty much made me the person I am today, and to see it go through so many phases and most of them being good it hurts. There's material you can work with here, build on the characters, you can keep the theme park premise but drop this bullshit demon stuff cause it really does not work in any way. Keep Velma the way she is, keep Shaggy and Scooby the way they are, give Fred....anything, give Daphne more than a breaking tradition damsel trope. Keep it simple in terms of plot, and complex in terms of character. I can always love you Scooby-Doo Mystery Incorporated. But this movie.....they betray me, they didn't keep their promise. They trick me, and, I don't care anymore. And we might as well do the second movie tomorrow cause I'm not talking about this series ever again for God's sake what the fu-

Thursday, January 24, 2019

Bleeding Steel

I can't even say the title with a straight face.

Oh. My. God. This film....oh boy this film. I got nothing. This one of the most outrageous movies I have ever seen, and I loved it. Imagine if you will a really cheesy, batshit insane, full on future cop action movie that though it was made in 2017 would feel right at home in the 80s just with a budget and today's effects. I'm not even sure I can realy the plot but I will try. So Jackie Chan plays a future cop in the futuristic year of 2020, where technology has advanced to the point where a doctor has created practically a Iron Man heart, literally a robo-heart valves and all and Jackie is tasked to protect him from this Darth Malak looking dude and fails quite badly due to his cyber warriors. Oh God I can't breathe! So he has like this militia of guys in these suits that look like if you mixed real state of the art combat gear with the main character in Tron Evolution, and this lady who I swear is a mix of Eva Green and Cate Blanchette in Thor Ragnarok and is literally credited only as The Woman In Black because she wears this leather S&M-esque like clothes with a cape and it is glorious. But you know stuff goes down, 13 years pass, and Jackie has been watching over a girl that has the interest of literally every person on the street including our villains, like I swear this poor girl cannot catch a break, she is harassed by every dick on the street and then gets chased by said Woman In Black, and she meets this....guy, just this guy who is trying so hard to be a badass cool guy, and it, it doesn't work. At all. But he's really damn funny. And they fight robo-dudes and shit, and fight to save the day. I just, guys, this movie is bonkers. I mean it is really out there and it is quite possibly the most entertaining movie I will watch this year. I have never had so much unadultered pure fun like this movie. I'm not even sure it's to that so bad it's good point, it's just in it's own league. Oh sweet merciful Christ you need to watch this movie. Like you need to get a group of friends, order some pizza, have some drinks, and watch this movie. You will have the time of your life. I was expecting a fun popcorn flick and I got something infinitely better. I rented this from Redbox and it gave me the option to buy it and....I kinda want to. I would give this movie on a pure subjective view a 7 or maybe even 8/10, this movie is genius. Objectively, it's like a 6 or a 5 but honestly who even cares. Do you go into a movie called BLEEDING STEEL if you want a truly good worthwhile movie to add to the list of some of the best films you've seen? Of course not, why would you even do that? That would just be silly. If I saw this back then I would have unironicaly put it on my top 10 list, I have completely lost my damn mind. Fantastic movie, do not think about it and just watch it, see this is why Jackie is still my man! Nothing is topping this ever, I love you, goodnight!!

Wednesday, January 23, 2019

Bad Times At The El Royale

Holy shit that was a good movie!

I feel like a complete ass not seeing this earlier, Bad Times At The El Royale came out in early October of last year and I didn't hear about it. Not a trailer, or poster, maybe one little ad while scrolling through my Facebook and I kinda feel betrayed, because it was damn good! Set in the late 60s several people from different walks of life ranging from a singer on her way to Reno, a priest with a faulty memory, and a household appliance salesman all check into the El Royale, a hotel set literally on the border of California and Nevada where they all slowly learn of the hotel's less than known tendencies and everything spirals into crime, blood, and drama. And I gotta admit, it was interesting just about from the word go, the movie is actually kinda split into these vignettes that are all connected to the story and that's a storytelling format not often used, hell the last time I saw it was in Pulp Fiction so it had my attention and kept it. But the characters are what really had me invested to end credits, I mean come on we got Jeff Bridges as a priest who shares the last name of Flynn how do you expect me to say no to that? But Cynthia Erivo who plays the singer Darlene was amazing, and in fact she shares a scene with Jeff that I swear to God makes the whole movie worth watching. It's so hard to explain but they're just two very likable characters and they just sit down and talk during a stormy night and I was completely blown away by that scene. Yes, I'm a sucker for more quiet, intimate, and life discussing scenes it shows real heart and good writing. Just, ugh guys this was such a good scene! It stole the movie for me and it ends the way I wanted it which gets you 2 stars already but you add this mystery intrigue of the hotel's shady doings, and you learn about these characters, and though I have to admit this is the first thing I've ever truly seen Dakota Johnson in and trust me we'll be getting to her soon and yeah she rides a pretty screwed up line in this movie too, it didn't hinder my enjoyment. But whatever, it's damn good. It's what I like to call the Hotel Artemis Effect, a movie that you go into with no expectations but come out of incredibly happy that you saw it and will gladly see again. I'm honestly not sure if I saw this movie it would replace Hotel Artemis on my top 10 list, hell it may have even taken Solo's spot to be truthful. wowed me. So yeah, two big thumbs up, 4 stars, by all means check it out!

I'm honestly not sure what to do tomorrow, I wanted to do Venom cause honestly that is a movie worth talking about more and deserves a second viewing but I also kinda want to browse the rentals and see if there's anything of note to watch. So I guess we'll know tomorrow!

Tuesday, January 22, 2019

In Retrospect: Halloween (2018)

Like man I have no idea now how to squeeze in all 4 Halloween movies on October 31st.

Now you might say well just dump Halloween 2 and stick to the original, this one, and Season Of The Witch and that makes sense. In terms of production, acting, and overall quality this Halloween movie runs circles around Halloween 2, no nonsense sibling justification, no drugged out Laurie who doesn't do really anything, and I gotta say the soundtrack for Halloween 2 besides the main theme sucks, this music that John Carpenter created is made for the piano and not synthisizers it sounds like absolute ass. But it had Donald Pleasance, memorable kills, a nice atmosphere, Dick Warlock is awesome, and a setting that is not usually taken in the horror genre so it has good points but come on. It's shall we say outclassed now that we have this movie, with incredibly likeable and even if they're not likeable you can understand them characters, and the production is very well done and takes advantage of various locations. They got a ready and able Laurie Strode to kick ass but has deeper character than that, and her family relationship is what really impressed me. Her daughter is estranged and distrusting of Laurie but she has a strong love and understanding in her grandaughter who really quickly comes into her own as a enjoyable and relatable girl, Andi Matichak really stole the show for me when she was on screen! But what's a Halloween movie without Michael Myers, besides being underrated and actually pretty good? And they did goooood with Michael, he may be up there in his years but the guy is still a juggernaut and still holds fear in many people's hearts. One point I severely screwed up with was the complete lack of praise for the score, like how the french toast did I forget that? The score is damn good, with John Carpenter back composing with his son and making some good tracks, hands down the best being The Shape Hunts Allyson, it has that It Follows catchy but creepy vibe to it and this is how you do synthesizers right Halloween 2! It's just hit after hit in every department, I didn't even mind the humor in this one cause it never went too far and it wasn't really there, I think I can count on one hand how many times the movie actually wanted you to laugh. And thank God they got teenagers right again! No slutty cheerleaders, or geeky dudes, just kids who are good friends with each other. That is something we need to see more of! I honestly hope they leave it be after this, cause we got our ending you know, like maybe there was a possibility for another movie but I'm happy with it being the end. If this was the last Halloween movie for 10+ years, we went out on a mighty fine note I gotta say. So come next Halloween day, you got at least one double feature to cap the day off with perfectly. Though Season Of The Witch is a chilling way to really end the night.

So tomorrow, we got a new movie and somehow I missed this in theaters so join me for Bad Times At The El Royale.

Friday, January 18, 2019


Well damn it, I wasn't expecting that.

I've never felt so jaded toward a movie. Glass was really good but it pissed me off too, this was the other end of the extreme, I was getting hyped and really liked the movie but it didn't end the way I wanted it. I know that is ridiculous, but hey man when you get jaded something had to happen to your emotions. In fact, that's a great thing! This movie got me all wound up and got some blood coursing through my veins, and it has been awhile since that last happened. It really did deliver everything I wanted, so this movie takes place I don't even think 6 months after Split. David has started a sort of homebrew crime fighting career, I mean we've seen tons of super rich heroes start out but we've never really seen a realistic no budget crime fighter so that was neat, but David soon comes into contact with Kevin and they confront and are taken to a psychiatric hospital where they along with Elijah are treated to believe their superpowers are imagined. We all know they are not so that makes the head of this hospital an absolute tool who I hate with every fibre of my body, it doesn't slow the movie down because the characters are still interesting and their interactions are a joy to see. So the movie is really good and if you asked me which is the best....maybe Split but this was the culmination of it all so it probably will win out for me. Will this movie hit the top 10 of this year? We shall see but for the first new movie of the new year, we're off to a strong start.

Wednesday, January 16, 2019


Well. That was interesting.

That's the word I would describe Split, interesting. This is an interesting film, centering around 3 teenage girls who are abducted by a man with multiple personality disorder, accumulating 23 personalities that the girls must try to use in order to escape. And just like Unbreakable it has a very fascinating premise before anything even happens. A thriller based around a person with multiple personalities is a film idea that I don't think I've ever come across, at least not off the top of my head so it already won brownie points for originality. But then the movie goes and goes, and another thing I noticed in this movie like Unbreakable is this continuous mystery that builds and builds to a fantastic reveal. No discredit to the other actors in this movie, but this movie would be hard to do without James McAvoy, I mean he gets it and if he didn't win awards for this, I'm gonna be upset! He changes on a dime and it is amazing to watch, he pulls off every persona, he's a joy to watch in...several ways, it's a great performance. And I'm sure lots of praise has been given to Anya Taylor-Joy who plays the main girl Casey, but there was a lot to her character and she was so interesting to watch because she seems and is in fact a very damaged character and thus acts like an outsider even in this heavy situation, I'm not sure if we will see her again but I will be looking out for her cause she did good. It was a shock to know that Shyamalan actually got the cinematographer from It Follows, this guy just really knows how to film uncomfortable, stressful, and scary situations and make it look good while doing so so that was a treat. Just all these elements complimented an interesting and creepy story and I'm even more hyped to see what will come of Glass, just to see what they do with these characters and this world they built. So join me next time for our final(?) foray into the Unbreakable world.

Monday, January 14, 2019


My first Shyamalan movie how about that?

Strange that this is the one above all others that I decided to review first but hey, with Glass right around the corner it was time. And I'm going to be honest out of all the films this guy has directed, Unbreakable is the one I hear the least about. I'm not entirely sure why though, it's a good movie, it came right off the heels of The Sixth Sense so Shyamalan was still a golden boy, and he took an interesting turn on a superhero-esque movie never seen before. So Bruce Willis stars as David Dunn a security officer who goes through a horrific train accident that kills every single passenger yet he comes through without even a scratch on him. Now that's an interesting movie all on it's own, it presents a good mystery that slowly makes more sense as the movie progresses. He soon comes in contact with a comic book aficianado named Elijah Price played excellently by Sam Jackson, and I gotta say this really is one of his best performances! Jackson really is, to me, the reason why the movie works so well. His passion for comic books I think dives well past an obsession, and his actions and more important his conversations with David are endlessly fascinating in the context of the movie. I think it's needless to say what the twist is regarding recent events but I would be lying if the reveal wasn't spectacular. There's tons to talk about in terms of comic book archetypes, character motivation, and the formation of a basis for future films which is actually what this movie is, a foundation for things to come. We will be talking about what comes next, but I wanted to talk more about smaller details I noticed that made the movie really good in my eyes. I like how the movie was shot, there are tons of shots where you see characters move and talk strictly through a small reflection somewhere in frame, in fact the framing is quite good and it does seem off with not much camera movement or even really many cuts, now the odd thing is I read up on this movie a bit and there is actually a multitude of long takes and I barely even noticed because the shots don't drag or even reach Birdman levels of camera movement and blocking of characters but they stick around for a bit then cut, I simultaneously really like and dislike the poncho David wears because it looks awesome in shadow and silhouette yet he wears it because he doesn't like water and I'm sure I could make a case for this movie influencing Signs but whatever. I'm interested to see what happens next in this world, and I knew when I saw the Glass trailer I had to get to this movie. I feel the movie warrants more discussion, because it is a good movie, and something one of my reviewers I watched made a really good point, they said something along the lines of, when there's pressure on Shyamalan he stumbles and falls but when there's no pressure or expectations he does well. After seeing this movie, he started to stumble with Signs, then fell and fell and fell, and smashed into the pavement with After Earth, now it seems he's dusting himself off and getting back on track with our next movie of the week, Split. See you then!

Friday, January 11, 2019

Gotham: Season 4

Ugh, I gotta really learn how to shut the hell up.

It's my fault, I jinxed it. I said Gotham has been solid hit after hit and hasn't done anything to really piss me off and make me want to quit the show. That mostly changed when season 4 hit. I am gonna be real with you, if the level of writing and overall quality of this season was how the show started, Gotham would have been cancelled before I think season 1 would have even finished. I didn't really start liking this season until I think the 16th episode. Out of 22. Mainly because there really wasn't anything happening until that 16th episode, at all. None! Whatsoever! It's like every writer was just in a bad mood writing over half the season, honestly. Anyway, 3 months after Bruce meets Ra's Al Ghul and the virus has been cured, Gotham is still under control of Penguin and in a move I almost swear ripped right out of the 60s Batman show, Penguin actually issues crime licenses, you can commit any crime you want as long as you have a license and there will be no reprocussions, which is a subject I could bitch about for hours but let's move on. So Jim visits Carmine Falcone, Gotham's previous top crime lord in hopes to bring a semblance of order back to the city, where we are introduced to his daughter Sofia. I'm...still arguing which I hate more between her and Tabby. Sofia is the winner of The Biggest **** In Gotham Award, and that's really the huge fact that I hold as the reason this season fell flat for me. Say what you will about Tabitha but I had to deal with her in small bursts, and even then she wasn't supremely bitchy or being insufferably annoying to the point I wanted Victor Zsasz and Professor Pyg to spend a holiday weekend with her in a dark damp room with an assortment of...let's call them toys. You have to deal with her and see so much of her in every episode until #16, and she is a very hateful, spoiled, cunniving, egotistic, and downright unlikable person. I wished for her death more frequently and with somehow even more infuriating rage than Tabitha ever warranted. And another thing that brings it down, there's no villains! They screw the villains! They are supposed to be half of the fun of Gotham! Penguin is still Penguin but he does have sweet interactions with a young boy that are nice, poor Ed actually loses mental capacity and becomes a bit of a dolt which is an A grade way to piss me off, Barbara is boring, we actually get Solomon Grundy who is then completely wasted, yeah we get a bit of Scarecrow who actually goes through several costume changes each of them memorable and striking, and for some weird ass reason like more than half the season is dealing with trying to catch Professor Pyg. Not one, or two episodes, but 4+. Do you see why I say the writers were just in a bad mood? Nothing happens for more than half the season beyond a few cute and humorous moments that I can count on both of my hands. There was one point where even Zsasz was done with this bullshit and just said to a coworker, "Let's go grab a milkshake." and I was like, "Yes! Please Zsasz let's go get milkshakes, this is so f***ing boring!" that is not a good sign!! I have no idea if because of this season they decided to wrap it up next season or not but sweet baby Moses I wouldn't be surprised. Nothing happens, no plot points, (mostly) no character development, no interesting setups or deliveries, it becomes a total drag reeeeaaallll f***ing quick! Until, like I said the 16th episode. Then it was like the writers got their second wind and got rolling again! After the boring bullshit with Sofia Falcone, what do they do? We get Jerome, Penguin, Mr. Freeze, Firefly, The Mad Hatter, and Scarecrow teaming up to do crimes. How can I put this? THIS IS WHAT YOU SHOULD HAVE BEEN DOING SINCE THE BEGINNING OF THE SEASON YOU FU- yeah, it's pretty cool. It's great seeing these wildly different personalities clash and see what they do. It's great fun and saves the season from being absolute dumpter fire shit, and they do it all well. With, one exception. I can't divulge into it cause it might be considered bullshit-I mean spoilers, but it had me scream out betrayal to the point where I needed to take a break from the episode. I'm pretty sure non-comic fans won't even bat an eye at it, but that was just uncalled for and wrong. If you watch this season, I really don't know what to tell you to optimize your viewing pleasure. Could you skip to Episode 16 and try to keep up? I guess, but it's not too easy to keep on top of all events. Oh, I got it, inspiration has hit me! You can read the cliffnotes version on Wikipedia then hop right in. There, perfect. No bullshit, all enjoyment. But hey, maybe you see something I don't. Let's just say you enjoy the whole season, and I wish I could relate. Gotham came down to a thread from being thrown off my watchlist but it pulled through. I hope season 5 leaves on a high and strong point. But we shall see. Until next time.

Wednesday, January 9, 2019

Gotham: Season 3

So many questions, all I'm excited to have answered.

Alright, same drill as before. Good solid season that does a lot and still keeps it interesting and (mostly) done well. Now onto the review! So it's been 6 months since the Arkham incident and stuff has really gone south in Gotham. Bruce has been away all that time, Gordon for some weird reason quits being a cop and starts being a bounty hunter chasing down Strange's creations, even poor Harvey quits being a cop so it's a certainly a low point for our heroes but the changes they go through, again make the show worth watching. Bruce has changed in 6 months becoming much wiser and stronger in his decisions and actions stepping closer to his destiny, Jim goes through....a lot but comes out better for it and faces some old demons making him a better man in light of several dangerous elements. Penguin starts campaigning for mayor because it's a mark all memorable Penguin's have done over the past 70 years ever since Burgess Meredith ran for office, so why not! We even have a new arrival in the form of Jervis Tetch, The Mad Hatter who has taken a special liking to Jim and has plans for him involving a rather less than desirable virus that is soon taken by even more sinister forces that Gordon gets knee deep into stopping. So there's lots of good stuff with our villains still, I love the relationship that develops between Ed and Oswald it really is the highlight of the season for me because of how much pull it had for me. Penguin and Riddler were my favorite and still are my favorite characters in the whole show so of course I just eat their scenes up! And I take great joy in having surreal adventures with The Mad Hatter, he is such fun and poses as a good antagonist for the first half of the season on and off. It's like every season there's even more and more plot stuff to talk about, it's an involved show but if you go for it you will enjoy it. But! Slight issues like before, but I think that's down to me watching season after season all day every day, you kinda start to nitpick! Like why is it no one can ever just shoot someone and has to ramble on? Why are the murder tactics so rubbish and downright nonsensical? Perfect example, see if you can spot the flaw in this plan: two people are riding on a single motorbike, one is driving, one bears a weapon. So they need a quick hit and run (ha ha get it?) so what would you use to take out a singular target? A 9mm handgun? Perhaps an Uzi for greater spread of fire and a better chance to kill your target? Or maybe just do a quick drive by and nonchalantly drop a grenade at their feet? No, they take the true most effective way of performing an assassination by waving a Crocodile Dundee "Thas' a knoife" bowie knife at them like it's bloody jousting!! WTF??? Oh but the flippin' creme de la creme comes in a scene where Tetch has a gun and wants to shoot a love interest of James who is literally around for maybe 5 episodes or Lee his now ex, and there is a clear intention to KILL somebody, and he shoots them in the gut! In the gut! Because there is CLEARLY NO OTHER PLACE TO SHOOT when you want to kill someone!! I would already be the absolute kingpin of crime in Gotham by the 4th episode because I can actually think coherently. Fine, whatever, television show but come on! Be smart! Screw your plot convenience! Ugh, anyway. Beyond the idiotic moments which are actually very few but by God they urk me hardcore, the show does very well. It is great to see the villains form, and change, and group together while the heroes have to undergo changes of their own while trying to stay one step ahead, it's surprisingly gripping storytelling. You want to see who succeeds, who fails, who changes, who lives or dies. And I came to a bit of an epiphany late in the season. Gotham is the only show I know where you can cheer for anybody and be justified. You can cheer for Jim to face his demons, you can cheer for Bruce to better himself, you can cheer for Ed to become The Riddler, hell you can even cheer for Stabby Babs and urgh, Tabitha for reasons of revenge and standing in the underworld. You pick sides, you make a choice, you love and hate with no logical standing. It's absolutely brilliant how they do it! Great job Gotham, you got a good style of storytelling and emotionally charged viewings of characters! Because if you can't get that involved in a show, what's even the point? Very good season, can't wait to see how it all comes together, it's sad yet exciting to see Gotham come to an end. Tons to enjoy, discuss, and view in a mad city.

Monday, January 7, 2019

Gotham: Season 2

You know what the best part about my TV reviews are? I give you 2 or 3 years to watch the first season before we move on to the next.

Well Gotham has begun it's last season and I desperately wanted to talk about the other 3 seasons after all this time. And I got plenty to say, both incredibly positive and very negative about this particular season. And this is gonna be one of those long ones, so for those of you don't want to read a 10,000 word review I'll make it short and sweet, Gotham is a great show and it can be a fine introduction to the characters and setting for non-Batman fans but can also be heavily enjoyed by hardcore fans even if they don't particularly care for a young Bruce Wayne story. I urge you to see it regardless because there may be something here you can get into. And, here we go! So about 2 months after the last season finale, the mob war has ended and the dust has settled. Penguin is now the major crime lord in Gotham, Bruce has discovered a new lead in his parents deaths a lot closer to home than he would think, Gordon has been facing extreme resistance in the GCPD regarding his standards and ethics, and a new face by the name of Theo Galavan has hit town with an agenda and an eye for the mayor's office. Starting now with this season, not only was it split in half by a mid season finale but they actually named both halfs, Rise of the Villains and Wrath of the Villains which has never been more appropriate, the rogues gallery roster and time we spend with our beloved criminals of Gotham is astounding with excellent casting as always and the performances are what makes you want more. It's great to see Penguin go from umbrella boy to the king of Gotham's underworld and it doesn't stop there with his character development! There's some twists and turns that always keep you on your toes and wonder what could happen next for him. I'm pretty sure this was the season that finally made me settle my heart on Edward Nygma as my absolute favorite character, and not just because I'm a fan of The Riddler. I won't dare spoil what all happens but I will tell you this, I was so proud and impressed by his first true puzzle crime. They grow up so fast. And the hits keep coming from our fine villains including a rework of Mr. Freeze's origin, the first female Firefly, and even a fine Professor who I will talk about shortly, but with 2 ever so slight stumbles. I hate what they did to Barbara. She went from a sweet, slightly broken character to Stabby Babs with that wild look in her eye and a fixation on reuniting with Jim and she's....problematic. She just doesn't work as a psycho villain, I can't see Jim naming his daughter in loving memory or trubute to his first wife, or in this case fiancee! She doesn't really do anything in the grand scheme of things, just pops up, goes bananas, goes on a bit of a rampage and then is promptly stopped, then just kinda goes back to normal...(?). It really doesn't work. And then comes the "sidekick" of Theo Galavan, Tabitha. *RED ALERT RANT INCOMING* Holy dogshit I cannot stand this woman!! She infuriates every fiber of my being, she is the bane of my existence in this show, she cheats death more than the f***ing X-Men!!! She is nothing but a petulent child who needs to be Max Schreck-ed off the tallest skyscraper in Gotham!! I hate, hate, hate this character, with the fury of a trillion suns, she contributes nothing to the story, her character is an absolute ****, something hardwired in my DNA despises this woman, and I would rather be locked in a small cell with Mr. Zsasz and Killer Croc for 3 days and nights than ever have to see 1 minute of her on screen! Whew.......but that's okay. Cause whatever raw emotions of hate I feel for Tabitha, there is tenfold that amount of love for the best character of this season. My heart will always belong to Ed, he really comes into his own and becomes a fantastic character but my sweet beautiful stars! BD Wong as Professor Hugo Strange is perfection. I love and praise every deliciously devilish moment he is on screen, to the point where I don't think it's a performance anymore! You know how some actors fully envelop the character they are potraying to the point where you can't discern between actor and character? Like how, in The Dark Knight you don't see Heath Ledger you see The Joker, or how you don't see Chadwick Boseman you see Black Panther! Like, I am seeing Hugo Strange right in front of me, and BD Wong is a glorious choice, they got the look down to the letter, his voice is smooth pimp daddy levels of awesome (and they say...part of that in the show), ugh he is absolutely incredible. How incredible you might ask? He literally gets stuck in the middle of a flamethrower and an ice gun, and survives! He's such a glorious villain that they couldn't even kill him off! That is what I am talking about. So I can get over the bad stuff very easily when he's on screen. I get the feeling the writers know how to write villains better than heroes, not that the heroes are bad, Jim and Bruce are still likable characters, Alfred is still awesome, we even get a young Lucius Fox who's pretty great! All our main good guys are written just as well as the last time with slight issue. Nothing show breaking, but more I don't know how to explain it. Conflicting? Confusing? Schizophrenic? Give you an example, Bruce comes to a point where he says killing is crossing the line and he will never cross the line but then actually gets a gun and confronts the man who killed his parents with the intention to kill him. Do you see the issue? That happens several times, especially in Selina's case, my God she might actually be schizo cause she goes from likable, sweet, and on good terms with Bruce then at the drop of a hat she gets all angry, resentful of her friendship, and is kind of a massive jerk. Why?? It's like they can't ride that line of complicated relationships because of worldviews and ethics, so it's either she's nice and likable or mean and being ugly. That's a problem. But honestly, beyond those 3 minor problems the season is a big hit! I like what they did, giving a centuries old backstory to Theo Galavan, new characters and old favorites including Jerome, bringing a more cinematic look to it and you use those dutch angles good just sayin', and most importantly progressing the story for Bruce and Jim. There's so much to talk about, if I need to take a notepad to keep up with everything I noticed for good or for ill, then there's a lot. I knew people including myself that thought Gotham was gonna crash and burn, but I wanted to give it a shot regardless and found a fine show that gives a new look into the Batman mythos. And with such a massive season with tons of stuff that happened that I want you to see, all I can give is an opinion of what they did while trying not to give away everything because I want to talk about everything. There's tons of great stuff to be found in Gotham if you look past the bad parts, I guess it's very much like the famous city itself in that regard. So yeah, two big thumbs up from me for season 2 and season 3 is coming right up!

Tuesday, January 1, 2019

Top 10 Films Of 2018

So let it be written, so let it be done.

Whew, another year behind us and more to come but which were the best? Let's find out.

10. Hotel Artemis - The reason it got on (besides Sofia Boutella) was I expected not even good things from this movie and what I got was damn good. That credit goes a long way, but we got 9 hits even bigger and better.

9. Solo - Again, really wasn't expecting much but I enjoyed it and yes it may have caused Disney to back down a bit but that by no means is a bad thing. Another fun adventure through a more seedy view of a galaxy far far away.

8. Teen Titans Go To The Movies - Love the show, love the movie! Good animation, great sense of humor, and not feeling like a feature length episode of the show. Not many can claim such compliments.

7. The Grinch - May have enjoyed it more than anybody in the theater but hey it's always fun to see a movie about me....most of the time.

6. Ready Player One - Retro, smart, funny, and a great story to tie it all together. Truly the holy grail of geek culture.

5. Bumblebee - I never thought I would see the day. But it is that damn good.

4. Halloween - A true return to glory through such dark times and a warm welcome to hardcore fans. Michael has never been greater.

3. Isle Of Dogs - Wes Anderson does it again for me with a film full of charm, heart, great animation, with some Japanese culture as the cherry on top.

2. Ralph Breaks The Internet - It all comes down to the ending why it's so high. It really is what sets it from an already fun adventure for all but takes it to a place that few have ever dreamed of.

1. Christopher Robin - I cannot think of a better film than this. It is perfect. The characters, the overwhelming heart and charm and lovability easily makes Christopher Robin someone I wish to see time and time again.

But what were your opinions on best films of last year? I've already watched a few videos and I've been surprised by the choices. Obviously a lot of animation hit my list, a lot of nostalgia hit the list, but hey man that's what I'm partial to and I can't get enough! I've been working on some stuff so I will meet you Monday evening in Gotham. Don't be late.