Archive for December, 2008

I Say It’s the Best Punisher Yet!

December 20, 2008

Finally went to see Punisher: War Zone a few nights ago, and honestly, the comparisons to Uwe Boll are entirely unfair.

This is what fans wanted in the last two Punisher movies.  The Dolph Lundgren version was just a Rambo wannabe, while Thomas Jane was a little too emo (although I like that Punisher for other reasons).

Firstly, it’s rated R!  Egads, a Punisher movie that’s rated R?  How did that happen?  Oh yeah, someone finally realized that the Punisher is just a cold-blooded killer of “evil” men.

Of course, they did give Frank a little pathos by having him accidentally kill an undercover FBI agent and follow him through the breakdown that follows. Ray Stevenson did a great job as Frank Castle.  They got the character right, both in looks and characterization.

Also, finally Microchip makes an appearance!  Wayne Knight is great as Micro.  Anyone else would have probably made him too “sidekicky”, but Wayne played him just right.

It was also nice seeing Soap in a Punisher movie since he was introduced with the rest of the characters from the Thomas Jane film.  He was suspiciously missing from that one.  Dash Mihok was PERFECT.

Oh, and Jigsaw and his brother… absolute brilliant insanity.  Dominic West was great (and I didn’t think his accent was that over the top like other critics have), and Doug Hutchison is sheer genius as Loony Bin Jim (his accent was stretching it a little, but it was fine).

The makeup on Jigsaw was better than I thought it would be from the trailer as well.

One thing I really enjoyed in this was how the cops handled the Punisher.  Of course he’s a vigilante and what he does is technically illegal, so there is a task force set up to catch him (run by Soap, of course), but the police also just let him do his thing, knowing full well that he can accomplish what they can’t.

The movie is extremely violent, gory, and bloody.  WHICH IS WHAT A PUNISHER MOVIE IS SUPPOSED TO BE!!

The critics who complain about this need to do their research.  The Punisher kills people.  What the hell do you expect him to do?  Talk them to death?

Now, I’ll admit there are a few wrong steps in this picture.  The accents are a little much at times, but not as bad as some I’ve seen.  The cinematography is a little jarring at points, but I’ve seen (and done) much worse.

The main problem I had was the overuse of neon.  Forgive me if I’m wrong, but this movie does still take place in New York, right?  They didn’t move the Punisher to Vegas and not tell anyone did they?  There was even a neon cross in the church.  I see what they were going for, and it does fit with the colors of a comic book, but they took it a bit too far.

Overall, though, I’d most definitely have to say that they’ve finally figured out how to make the Punisher work on screen.

A reviewer on IMDB said that this film was for the fans, not the critics; and he’s absolutely right.

If you’re a Punisher fan, definitely check out this movie.

 

William, the Movie Nerdfighter

who almost agrees totally with his friend Jonathan when he said after the movie finished: “that was AWESOME!”

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To Boldly Go… To the Great Beyond

December 18, 2008

Sometimes, I hate it when I’m right.

The Trifecta strikes once again.  First it was the Ackermonster, then Bettie Page, and now Majel Barrett-Roddenberry has passed.

The widow of Star Trek creator Gene Roddenberry was there from the beginning.  Starting with the original series as Number One in the pilot and Nurse Chapel for the rest, Majel was the Star Trek mainstay.  As the voice of the computers she appeared in every incarnation of the Trek world.

You will be missed.

 

William, the Movie Nerdfighter

who is glad Majel had a chance to once again voice the Enterprise computers for the new Star Trek movie before she passed.

Goodnight Ms. Page

December 12, 2008

It’s unfortunate that I am writing two of these in a row, but I had a feeling it was going to happen after I heard Bettie Page was admitted to the hospital the same day Uncle Forry passed on.

Now, she too has passed.  She was 85.

She was a cult sensation, and shall remain so.  She will forever be an embodiment of beauty.

 

Goodnight Ms. Page.  May you rest in peace.

 

 

William, the Movie Nerdfighter

who is now waiting for the other shoe to drop because sadly, these things always happen in threes.

R.I.P. Uncle Forry

December 5, 2008

I never got a chance to meet him, but he was one of those men who I always looked up to.

He’s essentially the godfather of sci-fi geekdom.  Without Forrest J Ackerman, sci-fi and fantasy might still be kitschy little bits of pop culture, lost drive-in films that only the people who originally watched would ever remember.  Forry was one of the legends that put sci-fi, horror, and fantasy into the mainstream.

He helped make it cool to be a geek, and for that he has my thanks.

Uncle Forry, you will be missed.

 

William, the Movie Nerdfighter

who hopes that they will at least keep the Ackermansion open.  He would have wanted it that way.

Sarah Marshall is Hard to Forget

December 2, 2008

Kristen Bell and Mila Kunis in love with the same guy?  A geeky guy at that (he wants to write a Dracula musical with puppets)?  Egads, it’s like a fantasy.

 

Seriously though, “Forgetting Sarah Marshall” is absolutely hilarious.  Bell and Kunis, as well as being beautiful, are both extremely capable actresses who create very real characters.  Jason Segel is great as Peter, who is taking the break-up with Sarah Marshall (Bell) very hard.  There’s a lot of crying and self-loathing going on, and Segel does it brilliantly.

Also, I’ve now seen much more of Jason Segel than I EVER wanted to.  He’s very comfortable “in the raw” as it were.

Bill Hader plays Peter’s step-brother Brian, and the two actors (as well as Segel’s writing) play it like they actually are related.

Oh, and I can’t forget to mention Russell Brand.  God, he plays the stereotypical rock star to a tee, but what’s really brilliant is that he’s not really a conceited guy.  The whole time he just wants to be Peter’s friend.  Aldous (his character) is a real “bygones” kind of guy.

 

One thing that really struck me with this movie was that I know someone going through the exact same situation right now (minus the Hawaiian vacation), so it really showed that Segel wrote and performed it just like someone going through this would (especially seeing a picture or a piece that was special between the couple).  Also, the reaction of seeing that person with someone new is just dead-on.

Anyway, it’s worth checking out if you haven’t seen it yet (but based on how behind I am on my movies, I’m probably the last one).

 

William, the Movie Nerdfighter

who would have a hard time deciding between Kristen Bell and Mila Kunis (and knows it’s extremely unlikely that the choice would ever present itself).

It’s Twilight Time

December 1, 2008

Figured I’d go ahead and get this one out of the way now that I’m back to writing reviews.

Oh, and this review will contain spoilers, as most of mine do.  If you want to be surprised, stop reading and come back after you’ve seen it.

 

So, the build-up for this movie was just insane for anyone involved in the online subculture.  Especially if you spend any time on YouTube talking to young girls who loved Harry Potter.  You see, the Twilight books by Stephenie Meyer were the next step for Potter fans, so the movie has been much anticipated since it was announced.

 

Now, I have to say that I’m a huge fan of the vampire story.  I remember watching “Dracula” as a kid (and “Monster Squad” of course), then reading Bram Stoker’s novel, then seeing Francis Ford Coppola’s version (I like it actually), and of course there was Buffy and Angel.  There’s a long standing history with vampires and the “rules” regarding them.  The rules in Twilight are a little different than I was expecting.

I remember thinking at first how it was weird that vampires went to school during normal hours.  “What about sunlight,” I thought.  Well, Meyers found a clever way to get around that by setting the story in the town of Forks, Washington, where it stays overcast about 80 percent of the time.  Since indirect sunlight is just a minor annoyance for most vampires, that didn’t bother me.  Then, something weird happened when they explained what happens to vampires in direct sunlight.

Edward speeds up a mountain to get above the cloud line with Bella on his back, they find a patch of direct sunlight and Edward walks right into it saying, “this is why we can’t show ourselves in sunlight” (or something like that).  At first, I thought, “OK, so he’s gonna be all ghoulish and nasty in direct light.”  Nope, he just shimmered like his skin was made of diamonds, and even that took a moment to register.  When he first stepped into the light I remember thinking, “um… nothing?”

There were some things I did like about this version of vampires.  I thought the baseball game was a great scene.  The fact that these vampires only fed on animals, but constantly fought the craving was a nice touch.  The idea of Carlisle Cullen building a family out of his clan was interesting as well.

Something still bothers me about Robert Pattinson’s acting as Edward.  I don’t know what it is.  I hope the director told him to play it that way, but it seemed a little heavy-handed at points.  Plus, he had a tendency to look much creepier than the “mysterious boy that peaks the girl’s interest” is supposed to.  I mean, he just looked psychotic a few times.

I like Kristen Stewart as Bella.  She just seems to fit it perfectly from what I’ve heard of the character in the books.  Also, Peter Facinelli is great as Dr. Cullen.  But, I’ve been a fan of his since “Can’t Hardly Wait”, so it was just nice to see him.  I feel he’s a slightly under-appreciated actor.  Took a minute to register who it was with that blond hair he was sporting though.

 

Over all, I’d have to say that this was a good movie.  Actually, the more I think about it, the more I like it.  There are some kind of cheesy effects used, only a few work.  The first killing of the other vampire clan where you see the vampire in the shadows chasing down his prey was a nice shot.

I haven’t read any of the books, and probably will eventually, but they aren’t a priority on my reading list at the moment.  I know most of the plot of the books from discussions with fans, but I wonder if Jacob was a larger part of the book than he was the movie.  For someone who, as I understand it, becomes quite important in the series, he didn’t have much screen time.

Again, aside from a few issues with special effects (which I always seem to have with certain digital effects anyway), this was a good movie.  Definitely designed right for tween girls, but still entertaining.

 

So, go forth and see the oddest (this coming from a guy who’s seen the hopping vampires from Chinese legend) and most interesting take on the vampire mythos I’ve ever seen…

 

… my little spider-monkeys…

 

 

William, the Movie Nerdfighter

who feels bad for Jacob because he’s always in the same boat.