It is a nice warm and sunny Friday morning as I write this. Late last night it was announced that Ben Affleck had been cast as Batman for the upcoming sequel to the Man of Steel movie. My first reaction was one of disbelief and shock. He wasn’t even on the radar. He wasn’t even mentioned as being in the running for the role. I also honestly thought that they would select a relative unknown and not a big name such as Ben Affleck. I think that is why I am so shocked. But the more I think about it the more I do like the idea. I think he can really pull it off. Today as I write this I am watching the majority of my fellow nerdlings have a meltdown as the interweb explodes with the fallout from this news.
I actually like the guy and his work. Like most of us, I was introduced to Ben Affleck when I saw the movie, Good Will Hunting. An excellent film. He and his friend, Matt Damon, crafted a great story and both acted superbly in that movie. Sadly, Affleck’s acting career had some misses as well as hits while Damon’s acting career really took off. I am also a fan of Kevin Smith’s movies and Ben has acted in several of them, my favorite is when he teamed up with Damon once again for the movie Dogma. Ben also had a highly publicized romance with Jennifer Lopez. Ben also was the star of Marvel’s superhero movie, Daredevil, which was not well received. All of this creates too much baggage in the minds of many fans of superhero movies.
But that is not the whole story. He starred in and directed in last years Academy Award winning film Argo. He also starred and directed the critically acclaimed film The Town. He played George Reeves in the well acclaimed film Hollywoodland. Ben Affleck does have awide range as an actor. He can do comedy as well as serious drama. Not every actor can do that.
I do understand that the last Batman, played by Christian Bale, is the most popular actor to don the Batcowl. So Ben does have some awfully big shoes to fill and hopefully he will not be in Bale’s shadow during his portrayal of the character.
Another point I want to make as my fellow nerds are all upset this morning is that back in the late 80s there was a similar outcry when Tim Burton cast Michael Keaton as Batman. Even I thought that was pretty certain back then that Keaton was wrong for the part he proved all of the nay sayers wrong and did two great performances as Bruce Wayne/Batman. The other thing I find fascinating about the nerd meltdown is that they have a problem with long-term memory. When Heath Ledger was cast as The Joker for the movie, The Dark Night, many fans were all up-in-arms and outraged about that! Today he is, and for a long time will be, the standard by which any portrayal of the Joker will be measured.
I am “borrowing” some points by a blogger Robert Galvan and they are all points that I completely agree with.
Let us go back through the history of movie casting:
- When Robert Downey Jr. was cast as Iron Man, people thought he would be TERRIBLE because of his past. This actually helped his character and made him the face of Iron Man.
- When Christian Bale was cast, people still thought of him as a small actor who would be terrible.
- Heath Ledger was BASHED up and down the street because of his pretty face when he signed on to play the Joker. Now most people now consider him the greatest Joker ever portrayed.
- Daniel Craig as James Bond… people did go crazy about it which most of you should remember, since it was just a few years ago.
- Chris Evans was the Human Torch and was thought of as a terrible actor. Uhh, have you seen London? And now he IS Captain America.
- Chris Hemsworth looks like an Abercrombie and Fitch model and he was in Star Trek, but now he IS Thor.
- Hugh Jackman was a broadway star. How in the hell is he going to be the ferocious Wolverine? Go remove your foot from your mouth now.
As I said, Ben Affleck was not even on the radar as being in the running to play Batman. Many sites on the internet listed whom they believed would be a worthy successor to Christian Bale to play Batman. The favorites were: Matt Bomer (my personal choice), Richard Armitage, Josh Brolin, Armie Hammer, Ryan Gosling and others. I think Affleck as a better choice than Brolin. I just don’t think he has the looks. I now am wondering if these were true rumors, that the studio was looking at these actors, or were they just the dreams of fan boys?
I am more than willing to give Ben Affleck a chance in the role and I think he will do just fine. There are more important things to consider such as the script and the tone of the film. I am more concerned about the script than who they cast as Batman. Look at Clooney in Batman and Robin. While I may enjoy the movie as an homage to the campy 60s show, Clooney did not do a bad job acting as either Wayne or Batman. The problem was people did not want a campy Batman movie, or at least the level of camp that was in that movie. So if Clooney had been Batman in a less campy movie I think people would not be putting the blame for that movie on his shoulders. If they set the tone of this movie like they did with Iron Man then I think Afflack will do just fine.
I am sure the tone of the film will be similar or exactly like the one established in Man of Steel. If that is the case then I really have no worries about Ben Affleck being able to play Bruce Wayne and Batman. I just hope they have a good story to tell and that the script is well written.
Elysium is a new science fiction film that will be released on August 9, 2013. The film is written, co-produced and directed by Neill Blomkamp (District 9) and stars Matt Damon and Jodie Foster. Here is a synopsis of the movie courtesy of Wikipedia.
In the year 2154, the very wealthy live on Elysiuma Stanford torushigh-tech space station governed by President Patel (Faran Tahir), in a utopian setting which includes access to private medical machines that offer instant cures, while everyone else lives below on the overpopulated, disease ridden, ruined, “Third World slum”Earth has become. Those who maintain Elysium will stop at nothing to enforce anti-immigration laws and preserve their citizens’ lifestyle, even destroying ships that attempt to get there.
After an industrial accident leaves him with a cancer virus, 36-year-old factory-worker and ex-con Max DeCosta (Matt Damon) has only five days to get from Los Angeles to Elysium in order to be cured.Max straps into a powerful exoskeleton and attempts to kidnap a rich businessman (William Fichtner) in order to steal his identity and hijack his way into Elysium. This pits him against Elysium’s Secretary Delacourt (Jodie Foster) and her violent secret police forces, led by Agent Kruger (Sharlto Copley).
My Thoughts: From the director of District 9, a very original take on the traditional alien invasion movies, comes another gritty dystopian view of Earth’s future. I have said in the past that I generally do not like Science Fiction movies with too strong of a dystopian theme. I have also said there are exceptions and this looks to be one of them. I really like the premise because it does mirror things in our society. Science Fiction often takes current issues and takes a look into the future to see how this problem may get worse in the future if humanity does not address the issue.
With Elysium we have a future where those who have plenty have left the Earth where society has crumbled and poverty and disease reign. Those are concerns of mine as I see the rich getting richer and the poor have less and less opportunity to better themselves. How far will it go? In the movie Matt Damon is sick and dying and the cure for his illness is found off earth in Elysium where the healthy and the wealthy live.
The trailers look very good and I like both Matt Damon and Jodie Foster so my expectations that I will enjoy this movie are pretty high. I only had one concern with one of the trailers I saw. It was actually a featurette. Agent Kruger, who had just tossed out a bomb and yells, “It was only a Flesh wound.” Yes that does sound like dialog that could be from any popcorn munching action movie starring Bruce Willis, Arnold Schwarzenegger, Sylvester Stallone, but that wasn’t my problem. My problem with the line was that it sounded as if Sharlto Copley was channeling comedian Dana Carvey when he said it!
This movie seems to be a gritty science fiction action adventure movie with a premise I find interesting and unless it is executed in a manner that I find boring, like getting bogged down too much in politics, I don’t think I will dislike this movie.
After Earth (June 7, 2013)
This movie is directed by M. Night Shyamalan and although he doesn’t have a good track record I do like the premise of this film. I t also has Will Smith and his son Jaden starring in it and for me that is also a big plus. A spaceship crash lands on Earth a thousand years in the future, encountering a completely different environment overrun by animals and a mysterious threat. The trailers look fantastic and I’m really excited for it.
This is The End (June 12, 2013)
One of the interesting aspects of this science-fiction comedy is that the cast, James Franco, Jonah Hill, Jason Segel, Michael Cera, Danny McBride, Jay Baruchel, Craig Robinson, plus plenty of other celebrity guests, all play themselves in this end of the world romp. They are all attending a party at the house of James Franco when the end of the world happens. This R rated comedy has been directed by Seth Rogen from a script he co-wrote with Evan Goldberg. This looks to be very hilarious!
World War Z (June 21, 2013)
Lately Zombies are everywhere and now here comes a movie about a post-apocalyptic world destroyed by zombies. Now I am not really into the zombie craze but I must say, this movie, starring Brad Pitt, does look pretty good from the trailers I have seen. So I will be giving this a look. This movie is based on a book, written by Max Brooks.
Elysium (August 9, 2013)
This is from the same filmmaker who brought us District 9. Elysium is a dystopian look at a futuristic society where the poor struggle to live on Earth and the wealthy live in idyllic conditions aboard a floating space station called Elysium. This stars Matt Damon and Jodie Foster. The trailer was just released and it looks amazing. This is another of my must see movies!
Monster University (June 21, 2013)
Mike & Sully are back! This prequel to Monster’s Inc has been long overdue. There is not much done by Pixar that I do not like. Monster’s Inc has always been one of my favorites. This movie shows thew College Years of Mike and Sully, at first they are rivals, lets see them become friends. Lets hope lightning strikes twice and that this is a hit!! Billy Crystal and John Goodman return to supply the voices to Mike and Sulley
I am sure other movies will also come out that I want to see and I will post them as I become aware of them. I will be keeping track of these movies and at the end of the summer I will see how well they did at the box office.
More Robocop news. It is being reported that RoboCopis being pushed back until 2014. The movie is in production right now and its original release date was August 9, 2013. Elysium, a science fiction film starring Matt Damon, Jodie Foster, Sharlto Copley, Wagner Moura, Alice Braga and Diego Luna will take that release date instead. No news was given to why it was pushed back. Sometimes things like this are a sign of trouble with the film…but not always. Speaking of Robocop, the London Daily Mail has released pictures of Robocop on his motorcycle. I do have to say I like the look. Not much in the news today folks.
I recently did some art work so today I will share my picture of a monster/dragon I drew.
There is a new science fiction movie coming out next year (March 2013) made by the same people that brought us District 9 a few years ago. So far only the title has been know and the fact that it is a science fiction film…until today!!
In the year 2159 two classes of people exist: the very wealthy who live on a pristine man-made space station called Elysium, and the rest, who live on an overpopulated, ruined Earth. Secretary Rhodes (Jodie Foster), a hard the government ofﬁcial, will stop at nothing to enforce anti-immigration laws and preserve the luxurious lifestyle of the citizens of Elysium. That doesn’t stop the people of Earth from trying to get in, by any means they can. When unlucky Max (Matt Damon) is backed into a corner, he agrees to take on a daunting mission that if successful will not only save his life, but could bring equality to these polarized worlds.
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