Monthly Archives: November 2012

Pacific Rim Viral Marketing!

Just like Cloverfield Pacific Rim, also a movie featuring giant monsters, is beginning their viral marketing. I love giant monster movuies, Kaiju, is the correct term, and I am really looking forward to this movie!!! The movie is directed by  Guillermo del Toro the movie stomps into theaters on July 12, 2013.

No worries, the movie is not a found footage or shaky camera movie!

http://blogs.wsj.com/speakeasy/2012/11/28/pacific-rim-or-cloverfield-2-you-decide/

 

Man of Steel and Justice League? …and Some Star Trek too! And GODZILLA news!!!

http://screencrush.com/justice-league-superman-man-of-steel/

With the new trailer for the Man of Steel about to be deliverd next month and with the Justice League movie in the development phase roumours are flying around the internet. Will Henry Cavill and the Man of Steel movie be connected to the  Justice League movie? Will Joseph Gordon-Levitt Play Batman in Justice League? Can Christian Bale be persuaded to don the Bat-Cowl for the Justice League movie? So many unanswered questions!

I have some ambilance about some of the questions. I actually wouldn’t mind either way if Christian Bale were to play Batman in this new movie. I think he did an excellent job playing the Caped Crusader even though I was not completely happy with the tone established in the movies. I wopuldn’t mind if Warner Brothers casts someone else to play Batman/Bruce Wayne. I do have a hard time seeing Joseph Gordon-Levitt in the role though. He seems too small and too thin in my opinion. I do however, want to see Henry Cavill as Superman in the Justice Leauge movie. He just screams Superman to me. Even though I have not seen him as Superman I have seen him in the trailer and othe rroles and I think he will be the best Superman since Christopher Reeves. I also wouldn’t mind seeing Ryan Reynolds return as the Green Lantern in the Justice Leauge movie. I thought he did a fine job in the role and I think the movie was not as bad as the critics claimed.

I think other than those two movies, I would rather have the Justice League movie be a starting point for other solo movies such as more Batman, Green Lanter and new Wonder Woman and The Flash. Warner Brothers does not have to follow the exact path laid out by Marvel. I do think it woukld be hard to have a trilogy of Superman movies (Man of Steel is supposed to be the first of three Superman movies) while another actor was playing Superman in the Justice League movie. It would open the door to critcism and comparison. You know how people like to compare and critisize things! Also, there are many fans of such movies that do like their continuity so having both Cavil and Reynolds…and maybe even Bale..reprise their roles would give the fans some continuity.

2015 is far away and many things can happen by then. I will keep the speculations alive and as news becomes available you will find it here!

This is also new! Here is the approved synopsis for the new Star Trek movie!

STAR TREK INTO DARKNESS – Approved Synopsis 11/26/12

In Summer 2013, pioneering director J.J. Abrams will deliver an explosive action thriller that takes Star Trek Into Darkness.

 When the crew of the Enterprise is called back home, they find an unstoppable force of terror from within their own organization has detonated the fleet and everything it stands for, leaving our world in a state of crisis. With a personal score to settle, Captain Kirk leads a manhunt to a war-zone world to capture a one man weapon of mass destruction. As our heroes are propelled into an epic chess game of life and death, love will be challenged, friendships will be torn apart, and sacrifices must be made for the only family Kirk has left: his crew.

This sounds good…Very Good!

GODZILLA NEWS!!!

It is being reported that the script for the movie is completed and that filming begins in March of next year!! I have not heard much as far as casting goes!!

http://www.comicbookmovie.com/fansites/monstroushotzone/news/?a=70454

One more…The Trailer for Pacific Rim is due in Decemer also and the viral marketing for that movie is stepping up.

http://www.comingsoon.net/news/movienews.php?id=97464&utm_campaign=facebookfan&utm_source=facebookfan&utm_medium=referral

Batman Forever

http://i123.photobucket.com/albums/o306/WmHohenzollern/batman-forever1.jpg

The Dark Knight Rising comes out on DVD in a couple of weeks. I have not seen it yet. I will get it I am just not sure when. Last night I was in a Batman mood and I watched the 1995 Batman Movie, Batman Forever,  produced by Tim Burton and directed by Joel Schumacher. The movie stars Val Kilmer as Batman/Bruce Wayne, Chris O’Donnell as Dick Grayson/Robin, Tommy Lee Jones as Harvey Dent/Two-Face, Jim Carrey as Edward Nigma/The Riddler, Nicole Kidman as Dr. Chase Meridian: A psychologist and love interest of Bruce Wayne.

This may be blasphemy to many but this is my favorite Batman movie. After I watch The Dark Knight Rises I will review that movie and the entire Nolan Batman franchise. Right now Nolan’s Batman trilogy is being hailed by fans as the best. While I do enjoy the Nolan Batman movies I do have my complaints about it. I will not go into detail here by my major complain is that they lack joy and fun. I must say that the recent string of Marvel movies really struck the right balance for me between seriousness, realism and fun and adventure. While I do appreciate Nolan’s realistic approach I do think it needs to be kept in mind that these are comic book characters after all.

This blog post is in defence of Batman Forever and why I like it. I really like Kilmer’s portrayal of Bruce Wayne/Batman. Some critics called his perfomance as Wayne wooden. I think he is mysteriously aloof with a dark secret to hide. His story arc of coming to terms with his past so he can be Batman not out of a compulsion because of guilt but because it is his choice. The movie see Bruce Wayne returning to his Locus of Control and taking responsibility for who he has become instead of blaming the death of his parents. I find that to be good character development.

I also like the fact that the coming together of Dick Grayson and Bruce Wayne as Batman and Robin is also filled with tension and good character development. They could easily have had the story be where Bruce Wayne naturally adopts DickGrayson as his partner…after all that is his destiny…but instead they take a more realistic approach where Wayne resists taking on Grayson as a partner who is also angry and wanting to avenge the death of his family.

Although Tommy Lee Jones  and Jim Carrey, who play Two-Face and the Riddler respectively, do a fine job in their roles I just wished they were a bit more serious at times. At times they are so comical and over the top that it gives the film an uneven tone and that would be my only complaint.

I find this movie a lot of fun to watch. The 1989 Batman with Michael Keaton is also good but the sequel, was too dark in tone for me but Michelle Pfeiffer as Selina Kyle / Catwoman does help redeem that movie. I find Batman Forever to be the most enjoyable movie for the reasons I stated. Plus I do like the charcter of Robin and this movie depicts his origin well and I like Chris O’Donell’s protrayal of Grayson/Robin. His Robin costume is pretty cool too.

Computer Troubles

http://i123.photobucket.com/albums/o306/WmHohenzollern/1wkAwwgyMEgjkvErIbpFfuq7mpB.jpg

I have a computer problem so I will not be able to do my usual post today. I cannot access my documents. Starting back Monday I will resume regular posting once more. I hope all in the US have had a Happy Thanksgiving!

 

 

 

The Host 2 Featurette

The Host (괴물, Goemul – “Monster”) was  a 2006 South Korean monster film, directed by Bong Joon-ho. This movie is a combination of a blockbuster plot and political commentary. Members of the cast are Song Kang-ho, Byeon Hee-bong, Park Hae-il, Bae Doona and Ko Ah-seong. The film sometimes deals with the implications of the American military presence in Korea.

The original is a very good South Korean made monster movie. This clip looks real good and can’t wait to see the sequel. I do not have a release date for the sequel yet.

 

 

 

 

 

New Man of Steel Trailer coming soon!

http://www.comingsoon.net/news/movienews.php?id=97270

 

 Zack Snyder confirms there will be a new trailer for the new Superman movie, Man of Steel, attached to Peter Jackson’s The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey due in theaters December 2012. 

Oh, and a trailer for Star Trek Into Darkness will be coming next month along with the previously reported first 9 minutes of the film in IMAX theaters. 

Secret Identities

This is a fun topic for me. What I want to examine is the contrasts of how the issue of secret identities are handled between Marvel Characters and the DC Characters. At first this was going to be a criticism of how Marvel handles the issue of secret identities in their comics and films but after growing more familiar with these characters I see them as being just different and my criticism is more toward the DC characters.

In the Marvel Universe the keeping dual identity of the superhero a secret doesn’t seem to be a significant issue. In the film Iron Man Tony Stark reveals himself to be Iron Man and in the next few movies everyone knows he is Iron Man and it doesn’t seem to be a big deal. Contrast this to a similar character, Batman. Both Batman and Iron Man are Billionaire playboys who wear a costume to fight crime. With Batman these are only a few souls that know Bruce Wayne is the caped crusader. In both Marvel and DC the secret identity is supposed to protect those who are close to the superhero so a villain will not harm their friends and loved ones. But since there friends and loved ones are the ones constantly in trouble and in need of rescue the point is moot. 

Spider-Man seems to be the only super-hero who tried to keep his identity secret in a similar manner to the DC Characters. He wore a mask that completely covered his face and very few people knew that Peter Parker was Spider-Man. I have actually come to appreciate the way Marvel approaches the secret identity issue. Both methods are fun and enjoyable. On the plus side of it Marvel is more realistic in its approach. I think it would be truly implausible for a person to actually be able to hide their superhero identity.

A good example of this is in the new Green Lantern movie. Carol Farris recognizes Hal Jordan as the Green Lantern despite Hal wearing the mask. I laughed at that part and was pleased to see it. The older I get the more difficult it seems for me to suspend my disbelief about secret identities. I am sure if I showed up at a friends house wearing Batman’s Cowl I am 100% sure I would be recognized and laughed at. I think that is why I like Iron Man and Spider-Man’s masks the best. They cover the entire face leaving no features of the real person exposed.

Don’t get me wrong I still like the idea of a secret identity. It is enjoyable knowing that people do not know who these superheroes are..even though at times it is implausible.

I want to close with a little rant. The Secret Identity that I struggle with the most is that of Clark Kent/Superman. It is just so implausible! I think Christopher Reeve was excellent in pulling off the dual role. In Superman II when Clark Kent reveals to Lois he is Superman and Christopher Reeve takes of his glasses and stand up straight you can see the physical changes! Now that is subtle but excellent acting! But it is still implausible. I am 100% sure if I showed up at my friends house in a Superman Costume while not wearing my glasses I would be recognized and laughed at. Superman is my favorite Superhero by far. But I wouldn’t mind if they redesigned the costume to include a mask similar to Spider-Man’s.

See you on Friday everyone and to those readers in the US…HAPPY THANKSGIVING tomorrow!!

 

The Amazing Spider-Man

I really liked the first two Spider-Man movies starring Tobey McGuire and directed by Sam Rami. The third Spider-Man movie?…not so much. I was not surprised to have heard that Spider-Man 4 was not going to be made given how poorly received Spider-Man 3 had been. What did surprise me was that Sony Pictures Entertainment was going to reboot the franchise and start all over. I really didn’t think that was necessary. Just make a better Spider-Man 4 were my thoughts. Plus, I really don’t care for origin movies (I must interrupt myself here and say that my love for Batman Begins, Iron Man 1, Green Lantern, Thor, Captain America, X-Men First Class is having me rethink that statement). The film stars Andrew Garfield in the title role, with Emma Stone as Gwen Stacy and Rhys Ifans as Dr. Curt Connors.

I followed the making of the movie and I had no clue who Andrew Garfield was, the actor tapped to play Spidey/Peter Parker, and when I saw the picture of him I thought he didn’t look right for the part. Can anyone say prejudiced? I was also not happy when it was reported how they were going portrayed his web slinging ability. The comics had his web slinging ability come from a device that Peter, the boy genius himself had made. The Sam Rami movies changed that to where the ability to sling webs was a natural part of his powers. I liked that better so I was disappointed to learn that this movie would return to the concept that was depicted in the comic books. Many fans were upset over the concept of the lizard, the main villain in the movie, because he didn’t have a snout. I had no such problem. Some fans hated the costume. I didn’t have a problem with that either. Watching the trailers did give me hope because they looked so good.

I generally try not to buy DVDs without seeing the movie first but since I love Spider-Man (my favorite Marvel character) I decided to give it a try. I Loved It! This is the best Spider-Man movie. In many ways it is a Peter Parker movie even though we do get to see Spidey a lot through the film. We see Peter Parker go from an abandoned teen who gets kicked around to somebody who, thanks to a radioactive spider bite, discovers who he is. He also discovers his past and what happen to his parents, especially his father, a brilliant scientists who leaves one night to never return.

This is actually a very character driven movie. Peter explores the relationship he has with himself, the bullies that pick on him, the girl he has a crush on, her father, his surrogate parents (Uncle Ben and Aunt May) and his father’s partner, who becomes the villain he must face. These relationships are all balanced with the type of action and adventure we come to expect from such movies. They all help shape Peter into who he is to become and likewise they are impacted by him.

Andrew Garfield did a wonderful job in both roles. He was excellent as Peter the shy awkward genius who has to navigate the minefield that is adolescence. He also does a great Spider-Man who can be a cocky superhero and Garfield delivers his lines to make Spidey funny without being an annoying character. The other performance I have to mention is Martin Sheen as Uncle Ben. Sheen has such a wide range in his acting skills. He can play a tough individual with an authoritative presence. He plays Uncle Ben as a simple minded, strong, yet warm and friendly. I really liked his portrayal. Sally Field played Aunt May and she did a fine job, really no complaint about her performance, my complaint is that they didn’t really give her too much to do. After the death of Uncle Ben all she is given to do is worry about Peter. It would have been preferable for an actress of such caliber to have been given more to do by the third act of the movie.

The special effects are top notch. In the Rami movies Spider-Man was depicted a lot with CGI. Although I am sure there were some scenes of Spidey rendered with CGI many of them were live action and I found them to be more realistic. If I am in the mood for a Spider-Man movie I know this will be the movie I grab. I think Sony Pictures did the right thing with this reboot and I really look forward to the next installment with anticipation.

 

Star Trek Into Darkness 9 minutes of movie to be released!!!!!

 

Paramount Pictures will release the first 9-minutes from J.J. Abrams’ Star Trek Into Darkness on 500 IMAX 3D screens beginning December 14 on runs of the Peter Jackson-directed The Hobbit. That’s way before the film’s release next May. It is the first time exclusive footage has played in IMAX 3D and only the third time a first-look will be released in IMAX.

 

 

Godzilla 2000 (1999)

After the failure of Godzilla 98 at the box office Toho returned to making Godzilla movies. Godzilla 98 had a $130 million budget but only made $136 million domestically. Godzilla did make another $242 million overseas for a total of $379 million. These numbers were not solid enough for Tri-Star to make the two squeals originally planned so the right for Godzilla reverted back to Toho Studios.

This new movie and the 4 Godzilla movies that came afterward are known as the Millennium Series and for continuity buffs only two of these movies would be related to one another. They all pretty much ignore the continuity of both the Shōwa and Heisei Series. In today’s parlance it is as if each movie of the Millennium series was a re-boot. I will say more on that with each of the Millennium Series movie I review.

Before I move on to the review of Godzilla 2000, I want to add that even though I grew up on the Shōwa Series the Millennium Series is my favorite series and I look forward to reviewing these movies.

Here is a synopsis of the plot. There exists the Godzilla Prediction Network (GPN) which is a network of individuals that independently study Godzilla and try to predict his landfalls. A reporter is following a small father-daughter unit that has predicted Godzilla’s next attack on Japan. While Godzilla’s whereabouts are being predicted scientists from Crisis Control Intelligence (CCI) have discovered a 60 million year old UFO at the bottom of the ocean. Unbeknownst to the scientists the light they used to find the UFO has woken it up. Just as the UFO begins to fly around Japan Godzilla arrives in Tokyo Bay where it is greeted by the Japanese military. Godzilla fights the UFO to a draw but not before the UFO copies the DNA of Godzilla. Yuji Shinoda, the GPN scientist discovers that Godzilla DNA contains Re-generator G-1 which enables him to heal quickly. Yuji also has a conflict with the head of the CCI who beleives Godzilla should be destroyed while Yuji believes that Godzilla needs to be studied. When the UFO returns it uses the Re-generator G-1 cells and morphs into a giant monster which confronts Godzilla in an epic battle with Godzilla triumphant in the end.

Other than the original 1954/56 version of Godzilla, this is one of my all time favorite Godzilla movies. First of all this movie introduces us to a redesigned Godzilla. Although many people often mistakenly refer to Godzilla as a giant green lizard, in this movie he actually is depicted green in color. He has been reduced in size from 100 meters in thigh to around 50 to 55 meters depending on which source is correct. He also has giant irregular sharp dorsal fins that are silvery and purple in color. Now if you would have told me that Godzilla was going to be depicted green with purple dorsal fins for this movie I wounded have said the designers are crazy! But this design works.

Actually it is my favorite Godzilla design out of all of them. This exact design would be used for the next movie, Godzilla Against Megaguirus. In 2001’s, Godzilla, Mothra and King Ghidorah: Giant Monsters All-Out Attack , an entirely new design would used. The Godzilla 2000 design would be utilized once again for the next two movies except with a more traditional color scheme. The last Godzilla film, Godzilla: Final Wars, which came out in 2004, would do a more retro re-imagining of the Shōwa Series design. A unique and creative development that began with this movie is the way Godzilla’s atomic breath begins to fire. We have the traditional illumination of the dorsal fins but what is new is that as the dorsal fins are lighting up we see the plasma beam building up in his mouth as energy from the air gets sucked in. That is an awesome effect! It is orange in color which I don’t care for but it would return to the more familiar bluish white in later movies. 

I also like the story. I do find it odd to pair Godzilla with aliens but since these are two of my favorite subjects in science fiction it can be enjoyable when done well. The Godzilla franchise has a hit and miss reputation with these types of films and I find this one to be one of the best enjoyable hits of this kind of movie. I still have a few unanswered questions though. Unlike other Godzilla vs Aliens movies we never get to see the aliens in this film, we only see the ship morph. So I am not sure if there are aliens in the space ship or is the ship itself the alien?

I like the actors and the main character, Yuji Shinoda is very likable. So are the reporter and Yuji’s daughter. However, the way his daughter and the reporter bicker does get old after a while, thank God it doesn’t last. I really enjoy the special effects with this movie. The scenes in the early part of the movie where Godzilla is attacking the city against a red sky is very moving. I like the final morphing of the alien into Orga, although the name of the monster never is mentioned in the movie, and Godzilla’s creative manner in which he defeats his nemesis. Though the morphing a creature or alien into different stages has been done before, and will be done again, I don’t mind as long as it works within the movie and this one works quite well.

This is one of the movies that also balances the concept of the good Godzilla against the bad Godzilla. In the later 60s and 70s Godzilla became the hero. The Heisei Series, for the most part, returned Godzilla to the original malevolent role. He is a malevolent monster in this movie and his role as the hero is circumstantial and not intentional. He is acting in self-defense and if it happens to help humanity while he is protecting himself that is just a side benefit. The movie is fun and entertaining. It is not somber and foreboding like the original, but it is lighthearted thoroughly enjoyable with an interesting story with fascinating alien concepts about along with likable characters that makes me want to watch to see what happens to them all.

 I rate this movie: A+