John McClane. Johnny Mc. John Wayne. Cowboy. Yippee kay yay and so forth. The Alpha Male.

Alpha Male. Or an 80s coke dealer.

Alpha Male. Or an 80s coke dealer.

Not only have you defeated both Scar and the Sheriff of Nottingham but you have made bald beautiful.

 

Pictured: Bald and beautiful.

Pictured: Bald and beautiful.

Pictured Bald Not Beautiful.

Your willingness to kick a$$ well into your mid 50s and 60s is inspiring. All that despite the fact that the last two Die Hard entries are nearly unwatchable and mere shadows of the series. They’re like paradoies of the films made by the Wayan’s Brothers. Except they star Bruce Willis. Can I be honest and tell you that I want you and Dirty Harry to have a team up movie. Or start combining team up movies. Freddy and Jason vs. Harry and Jon. Those undead supernatural freaks wouldn’t stand a chance. And if AVP l had featured you guys, the movie could have saved a ton on the budget

“Step away from my daughter you alien b*tch.”

…Because it wouldn’t of lasted through the opening credits, John McLane throws all of the Predators off the side of Nakatomi towers (and drops some witty bon mott as he does so) and Dirty Harry checks to see just how lucky the Alien is feeling. (Long story short, the alien was not lucky.) I was actually discussing the other day how I can accept those two men kicking a$$ at any age. If John McClane and Dirty Harry shot a movie that everyone died except them (and Batman and Superman) I would accept it. I will admit to not really caring for the most part for the 4th Die Hard. Or at all. (Script Free or Die Hard) But I enjoyed a lot of the movie despite this fact because of Bruce Willis’s eternal likability. I am completely against a reboot, re-imagining, retooling or anything else that starts with the prefix re-. Bruce Willis is John McClane and John McClane is Bruce Willis. There is no one else that should or can play this role. Some characters can simply and only be played by one person and this is one of them. Here are a few of them.

Brando’s Saturday Morning Tween Sitcom Contemporary.

This guy was okay too.

And this guy.

And this guy.

If you want to remake the Sixth Sense, The Whole Nine Yards or Striking Distance. No one will stop from destroying this because they think it’s a timeless classic, I assure you. Or create a terrible vs movie of the three, knock yourself out. No one cares. Side note: Talk about a director whose career morphed into the definition of suck. I know I pick on the last two Die Hards as bottomless silos of fecal matter, but if you want to see the award for hot and steamy, M. Night is your man…

This…

Also this…And it’s subsequent sequel “The What’s Happening” starring Freddy “Rerun” Stubbs

I actually went to the trouble of going to the future to see how many more terrible films he will make. Every time I tried to upload from Google, all I got was the word balls with this photo. “Error 666: Internet is full”

 

Granted, Bruce Willis has had many missteps in his career. Hudson Hawk was such a huge financial failure, it closed Tri-Star Pictures.(losing nearly 40 million dollars, without taking advertising into account.) it isn’t the worst financial failure of the 1990s (those distinctions belong to Cutthroat Island and The Postman) but I think its of note that you shut down a studio. I don’t think its nearly as bad as a lot of people will tell you it is either. The studio marketed it as an action film, even though its much closer to comedy. Think if Chronicles of Riddick were advertised as a WWII drama. (I’m convinced Vin Diesel saw Judy Dench kill someone brutally and she wanted it kept quiet. That is the only explanation of her presence in that “film”.) People wanted Die Hard II and they got Bio Dome.

There are few immutable truths in show business. And Bruce Willis as John McClane is one of them. In the age of the reboot and restart, leave this one alone. The effects of the original Die Hard can still be felt today. To call it seismic or revolutionary is to underplay its ultimate significance. Mine every inch of Joel Silver’s production filmography, but please, leave this sacred alone.

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From my sister, Sara, and her insanely talented friend, Andrew Samples. The first track from her new comedy project. Enjoy.

Geek Chic: Pokemon

May 19, 2011

If I ever sat down and played one of the stupid games I bet id like it. Which is also the reason I don’t sit down and play it. It represents something that kids do to irritate me. If I hadn’t of been the appropriate age when the Ninja Turtles were popular (or at least originally popular) I’d probably think the same thing about them.

No. I was wrong. They're just as cool as I remember them.

The kids craze stuff ended, for me at least, just when the Power Rangers had started to become popular. Pokemon was just something I had to take up at the after school program that I worked at, at the time because kids where fighting over it.I don’t have any fond nostalgic memories of it. It’s kind of like getting dumped by someone right after you saw a movie. I went to see The Ghost and The Darkness with my then girlfriend, Marie, or as I referred to her shortly thereafter the Vile Heartless Harpy of Detroit or that b*tch that ate my heart and then shat it down the latrine( on my birthday no less.)

This is the way I will always choose to remember her.

and was ignored through the entirety of the movie. I didn’t get to hold her hand. She didn’t even kiss me. I did get some lame shirt or something that I’m relatively sure she didn’t pick out ( that I probably ended up burning. Yeah, I have some inner demons.) I don’t remember much about the movie. I was probably concentrating on how I was pretty sure I was going to cry myself to sleep later that night.

I believe I cried less the first time I watched this.

or this.

or anythime I watch this commercial.

Or that no one would ever love me again or something stupid that teenagers over exaggerate and think. Anyways, I have never watched the movie again because good or bad, it represents something altogether different for me. Much in the same way that Ghostbusters represents a happy, more innocent time for me or Pokemon just being something I had to deal with at work, The Ghost and the Darkness represent a loss of innocence and my first real heart break. In a semi-unrelated story, I dated the girl again. And she dumped me. Again. On my birthday. Again. But I guess that’s what being a teenager is all about, getting hair in new places and learning that sometimes life is just a series of disappointments and hardships with the occasional cookie for good measure.

The Postman

Even though The Postman is technically in the future, it feels alot like a western.

That's probably not what I meant.

The Postman is directed by the Oscar winning Director Kevin Costner, thats right kids the man has an Oscar. For anyone who wants to dump on Kevin Costner, go ahead. It’s cool. You heard someone else do it and you thought it was neat so you did it. Way to think for yourself. Shall I remind you that he beat Martin Scorsese for the Directing Oscar…well not for Postman but he did beat him for Dances with Wolves. The Postman isn’t a flawless movie. Directors in Costner’s place tend to get alittle full of themselves and don’t like to edit their movies down as they might have earlier in their careers.

This is an excellent idea. Where is the United Artist's offices again?

The Postman ran at almost 3 hours and while an enjoyable film, in this humble cinefiles opinion, still could have some of the proverbial fat trimmed. Then again the special edition of Dances runs at over 4 hours so maybe he did cut this one down and I was just unaware. The runnning time isn’t my big complaint. I can deal with a long movie. I’ve had more than my fair share of LOTR marathons and you have to reserve an entire day for that trilogy.

Before.

After.

I think sometimes the clarity of the narrative and the overall flow of the film seems to get damaged because of some of the lack of edits. All that aside, as much as i do actually enjoy this movie it really was the begining of the end for Costner as a major hollywood heavyweight. His next several films lacked the budget or the advertising dollars that his early 90s successes had. But when you bet the farm everytime you do a movie like he seemed to in his heyday eventually it wasn’t going to come up roses. If you have a modestly budgeted, almost independant film that doesn’t work most studios will forgive you that. When you have a holiday release that had nearly and 85 million dollar budget and it doesn’t work….well it doesn’t end as well for you.

According to our research Robots kick a$$.

Waterworld still being in the recent memory for the studios at the time, that had managed to make back its stagering budget due to the overseas appeal that ole Kev-o had left let that film manage a small profit. Postman unfortunately wasn’t popular anywhere except my house, the post office and Costner’s mom’s house.

At least his mom thinks he's cool.

Costner has had several modest success since then but no where near the Prince of theives, Field of Dreams or Bull Durham’s of his past. I love the man’s work and have wondered more than once what would have happened had the Postman debacle not have crippled his clout. Ah well, a girl can always dream….

I hate to break this to you. Ben Stiller isn’t funny.

Case in point.

Not as an actor at least. I like his directorial work on The Cable Guy (A film that apparently only I and a few other find funny.) Tropic Thunder I found funny except whenever he spoke. RDJ was inspired and the waning Jack Black inspired more than a few laughs for me. I think it’s because he looks like he’s trying to hard. When Vince Vaughn hits me with a joke, it’s as natural as Clapton on a guitar or Nicolas Cage sucking a@@.

I've always assumed this was some sort of punk on Alfred Hitchcock and the memory of the original.

Ben Stiller seems like that kid that wanted to be the class clown, but just wasn’t naturally funny. Dodgeball and There’s Something About Mary are funny in spite of him but not because of him.

You've got spunk kid...

And Starsky and Hutch is just a mess. I don’t know if they’re trying to insult the series or just make a humorless comedy.(I never rewatched it to try and find out.) I have yet to watch the original Night at the Museum for fear that it will make me respect Dick Van Dyke and Robin Williams less. (Robin Williams used to be one of the funniest men alive…now…well, you saw RV didn’t you?)

This film will be going straight to video. The joke seems to be on him not from him.

And Meet the Parents just felt like exercise to me. I dig DeNiro. He was the straight man and he held his end up. Jay Roach, the director, also knows how to direct a good comedy but if you aren’t funny to begin, the sculptor does have to have some clay. As far as Meet the Little Fockers is concerned, I really couldn’t give a fock. If you like him, don’t let me get in your way. Him and Vin Diesel have to put food on their plates just the same as the rest of us. Just don’t invite me over for the DVD. I’ll pass and watch a good movie instead.

Pictured: Funny Movie.

I’m not talking about who would win in a fight, hand to hand, James Kirk will always win.

He did say she needed more scoundrels in her life...He didn't specify who.

He did say she needed more scoundrels in her life…He didn’t specify who.

“Kirk to Bridge.” “Yes, Captain?” “I’m Awesome. Kirk, Out.”

That man will, cheat. maim or cut whoever stands in his way and then have his way with their sister and not call them back. That’s apparently how you do things in the 23rd century. In a ship to ship battle, The Enterprise D or E has the distinct and clear advantage.

Though this seems to happen every time they let a woman drive.

Not only does the ship have a 75-100 technological advantage (depending on which part of the TOS era we’re talking about) Data and Worf being at the Ops and Tactical are going to give anyone a serious advantage. Worf thinks everyday is a good day to die, so there isn’t alot your going to do to scare him.

"Sir, may I remind you, it is Tuesday."

“Sir, may I remind you, it is Tuesday.”

Data is cooler than an ipad. I would love to know how many gigs worth of storage he has. (It’s actually two hundred million quadrillion bits and a processing time of one hundred thousand quadrillion bits per second. I didn’t really wonder.) And considering that my PS3 needs to update ever 4 sec. I’m also going to assume that if we have the capability to time travel and advanced quatum physics, someone has created an algorithm for data compression (No pun intended.) that would make Data even more efficient than today’s standards when you allow for the tech “inflation”. What I’m really talking about here is the quality of the television and cinematic adventures.

I am a TNG Trekker, I’ll go ahead and get that out of the way. If I seem to have a bias, it is definitely toward that era. I also prefer DS9 over the original series, which has earned me more than one evil look from a fellow Trekkie. James Kirk , especially in the TV series, belongs to an era that isn’t mine.

I’m just as confused as you, Dick.

I wasn’t alive during the 60s and I’m sure I missed more than one metaphor when watching reruns because of this. It’s like not getting an in-joke in a Kevin Smith film because you aren’t scholarly versed in Clerks, Mallrats, Chasing Amy, Dogma, and Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back when you watched Clerks II. It doesn’t really take away from the movie, but you probably would get more from it if you did. I own and have watched ever episode of Star Trek, TAS, TNG, DS9, Voyager (God help me) and Enterprise.

Pictured: Captains better than Janeway.

I also own multiple re-releases of the films (both TNG and TOS) I’m as close to being one of those Trekkers that takes it too far, but I’m not quite there yet. I don’t go to work dressed as a character from Star Trek or live by the Ferengi Rules of Acquisition (though I own a costume and have the published version of the Feringi Code as well as a Klingon Dictionary, so… make of that what you will.) I just want everyone to know that I’m qualified to speak on the subject.

If there was a way to have a degree in Trek, I would have a BA in that BS.

What the two most popular eras of Trek really come down to is that TOS really hit its stride in the films (Wrath of Khan, Voyage Home and Undiscovered Country) while TNG really ended up as a cautionary tale of what happens when you put a bunch of television actors with a television producer and television screenwriters with television directors (Though to be fair Stuart Baird did have a couple of feature films under his belt when they handed him Nemesis, they being US Marshalls and Executive Decision, one the unworthy successor to The Fugitive and the other an uninspired rip off to Die Hard. They kind of got what they deserved when Nemesis didn’t live up to expectations.)

At best TNG looks like a really good TV miniseries and at its worst (Generations, Insurrection or Nemesis, take your pick.) it looks like a really bad TV miniseries.

Two Captains. One Destiny. Three Unsatisfying Feature Films.

Generations is a gorgeously shot film. They hired Academy Award nominated John Alonzo and it really shows. Generations, from a technical stand point, is one of the best looking Star Trek films. However, that’s really where my praise stops. The film should have been overwhelmingly good. And it did, on paper at least. James Kirk and Jean-Luc Picard, together at last. The destruction of the Enterprise D. Data finally getting the emotion chip. The launch of the Enterprise B. Unfortunately for the viewer, none of these work. and it isn’t because the screenwriters don’t understand Trek. They penned both “All Good Things” and First Contact, easily two highlights in TNG television and film. It isn’t because Patrick Stewart and William Shatner aren’t vastly talented actors. I think the real problem stems from 2 words. Rick Berman.

So let’s take what’s good about TNG, throw it out the window, hire an untalented lead actress and for everyone that’s ever hated Wesley, I have an idea that will make him look like Ben Sisko, James Kirk and Picard rolled into a single entity. One word…Neelix.

I respect what he did for Trek. The seasons he more or less presided over of TNG are its best. But note that I am talking about television here. Even the Berman produced DS9 is landmark as far as syndicated television is concerned. But again, television. And even a broken clock is right twice a day. I think he utilized the same mentality he was using to produced television as when he took over the film series from Harve Bennet, who he himself had taken from Roddenberry (And anyone wanting to fuss at me for taking a shot at the Great Bird of the Galaxy, let me remind you his creative control gave us Star Trek: The Motionless Picture and Season 3 of TOS.)

This book started with someone watching Star Trek: The Motion Picture.

If the TNG movies had been movie of the weeks or mini-series, they would have stood much taller and looked very impressive. As it is, they just look like modestly budgeted Sci-Fi films released roughly two years apart. Which is what they are. TNG is at its best when it was on television. It gave us Best of Both World Part I and II, The Inner Light, Relics and Measure of a Man. These are high points the films never came close to reaching. It may have had something to do with them wanting to reach a larger audience and water down the “Trekkieness” of it all. Maybe it was hiring David Carson and Stuart Baird. In the end, it just left us with a lackluster series of films that eventually became so unprofitable and unappealing, Paramount benched Star Trek for 7 years. (and in an ironic twist, gave it to a man known for his engrossing serialized TELEVISION, JJ Abrams.) The TOS movies fared much better in terms of quality and profitability. It also had some stinkers. I will submit that the odd numbered Treks theory doesn’t always hold true (and I’m not actually picking on Nemesis again here.) Star Trek: The Motion Picture and Final Frontier can get pretty unwatchable at times. I’m not telling you that they’re good movies. The really aren’t.

"Why does God need a Starship?" Only James Kirk is arrogant enough to journey to the center of the universe and ask, presumably, the Almighty for I.D.

“Why does God need a Starship?”
Only James Kirk is arrogant enough to journey to the center of the universe and ask, presumably, the Almighty for I.D.

Star Trek III: The Search for Spock on the other hand is really only guilty of not being as good as Star Trek II, which to be fair, only Star Trek VI can boast. (I know I’m in the minority here, but I really think VI is the best of the Trek films, including the most recent singularly titled Star Trek (2009).)

You heard me, Nimoy. Go search yourself.

With Motion Picture and Final Frontier notwithstanding, The TOS films really feature their casts in a better light, and more importantly, look like films, not like expanded episodes. The original Trek series, I don’t think every hit its stride like TNG did. It has some gems within it though. Assignment: Earth (missed opportunity of  a Spin-off) City on the Edge of Forever (one of my favorite original series episodes, if not my favorite.) Mirror, Mirror, Balance of Terror and The Menagerie (the all time greatest clip show ever.) I simply think they didn’t have the resources or money that was eventually provided their successors both deservedly (TNG and DS9) and not so deservedly (Voyager and the first two seasons of Enterprise)

Being lost in the Delta Quadrant is a metaphor for what this show did for fan interest.

I understand and respect that none of them would have come about if not for the original, I’m just speaking from my overly opinionated mind here. When TOS had a shot with the films, I think they finally got provided with the talent and funding they deserved in the first place. At the end of the day, this debate isn’t one that is likely to be settled. Ever. Or at least in my lifetime.

In summation TNG was a better TV series than it was a film series, with its pentacle being Best of Both Worlds Part I and II. The orignal series, while respectable, really gained its well deserved mass popularity with the film series (and also syndicated reruns and advertisers looking at demographics) with it culminating with Star Trek VI: The Undiscovered Country a beautiful end to the continuing mission (5 year mission my a**.) Here’s hoping the new film series as well as the eventual television series go as only Trek can…boldly.

I determinded a long time ago whatever I seem to start talking about (In this case the Dark Knight avenger, which come to think about it, is how most of my conversations start.) the conversation inevitably ends up on film. The Siskel to my Ebert, Logan Myers, always has something interesting to retort. I don’t know that the two of us have ever agreed on a film in total, which I suppose is what the spice of a good film conversation is made of.
Adam Cravens via Screen Rant
Hopefully Frank Miller from 2011 will have nothing to do with this. 1987 Frank Miller, sure. I’d even accept Frank Miller, screenwriter of RoboCop 3. Unrelated fun fact, RoboCop is the coolest thing Detroit ever produced.

screenrant.com

Recent reports indicate that Frank Miller’s ‘The Dark Knight Returns’ is being developed as a DC Universe direct to DVD animated feature. Is the gritty tale of an aging Batman suited for cartoon form?

April 15 at 9:06am ·  ·  ·  · Share
  • ReuBen DeBord likes this.
    • Logan Myers Too bad Darren didn’t get to direct the robocop reboot…I guess
      wolverine had a bigger paycheck(so strange) 😦 Also, did you know that Cronernerg was going to direct robocop and total recall? I love those movies just the way they are, but Cronenberg would have just destroyed our brains.

      April 15 at 1:23pm · 
    • Adam Cravens I always thought him directing Wolverine seemed out of place, I was just kinda waiting to see the other shoe drop. I think he’s an excellent director, but I don’t know that I’d call him mainstream. Veerhoven did some excellent stuff back in the day…and then Showgirls.

      Saturday at 4:12am · 
    • Logan Myers Darren is amazing and I think he is just trying to do what Nolan did…stop making good original films and make good superhero movies.

      Saturday at 4:14am · 
    • Adam Cravens

      Someone needs to make good superhero movies Logan. As Tim Story and anyone who has directed any film with Punisher in the title knows, these films aren’t going to produce themselves. And Chris Nolan can make roughly any film he wants to right now. Did you read the synopsis for Inception? If that man didn’t have one of the few films that has made over a billion dollars under his belt (and likely the promise of make Dark Knight Rises) that film would have never gotten past the “I have an interesting idea for a movie” phase. Unusual and talented filmmakers often have difficulty in the beginning of their careers, more often than not, because what they’re doing isn’t easily categorized or predictable. Studio’s want to do things with the largest chance of succeeding, not the largest artistic merit. If they were guaranteed that Clint Eastwood doing a gritty re imagining of the Golden Girls using only the technology and sets available from the movies Mars Needs Moms and Bill and Ted’s Bogus Journey would be a hit, you would see a starting date tomorrow. I love a good independent, thought provoking film as much as you do,(maybe not as much as you do) put I also like seeing talented filmmakers (like Nolan) being given the money to do interesting, thought provoking, or just entertaining films than giving McG the authority to do anything.
      Sunday at 6:39am · 
    • Logan Myers

      I don’t have much time to discuss this right now, but I have no respect for movies that are given the green light because they will make money( I am just sick of watching mindless junk) and it’s great Nolan can give his idea’s a bigger budgets because of becoming very well none with batman, but hated inception(Nolan’s worst film in my opinion) and Nolan made much more thought provoking movies with under 500,000 dollars before Dark Night. I just don’t find superhero movies though provoking in the least and they are always just green lit because they can cross sell a thousand other items and such with them. My two cents.
      Sunday at 12:15pm · 
    • Adam Cravens

      I don’t disagree with you about films being given the greenlight because of the amount of money they will make or the amount of lunch boxes (Do kids still use lunch boxes, or has does the Ipod take care of that now?) Unfortunately, being a business, they have to make money. It’s the nature of the beast. How many King’s Speech T-shirts have you bought? Did you get the Schindler’s List action figures? What about the There will be Blood video game? If they have to make 10 Big Momma’s Houses so that I can get my art, I think it’s a fair trade. Unless you want to personally finance every movie you want to see. That would get expensive…almost immediately. Sometime’s art and profitability do match up (Lord of the Rings, off the top of my head) but for the most part it seems to be one or the other. It will either be Transformers or probably something that Miramax produced. (or used to.)
      Sunday at 2:15pm · 

Oh, Terminator: Salvation.I was really rooting for this movie to succeed. Despite the Anti-talented McG being at the helm

"Right, right...I think I see what youre going for. So guys I was thinking, instead of making a good Terminator film, what if we just put a monkeys swollen a** on the screen?"

I really wanted the Terminator to “be back”. Unfortunately all the good casting and money in the world can’t stop a poorly paced and badly written movie. I didn’t like Terminator 3:Rise of the Machines, either. (As a matter of fact, I don’t think I’ve ever liked anything with Rise in the subtitle. I’m talking to you especially un-Fantastic Four.)

Pictured: The good Fantastic Four movie. Note that Tim Story had nothing to do with it. And Fox is falls into the epic levels of stupid for assuming that someone that thinks Queen Latifah can carry a movie could somehow create a watchable FF film.

I loved the first two installments. (I didn’t hate the TV series, either.) The first two films are, and I am not overstating, some of the best science fiction ever committed to film.

"My d**k sprays gold and diamonds. That I then trade at the Cash for Gold.""

I really enjoy the first film and when you look at the budget relative to what you get on the screen, James Cameron made every dollar his b*tch. The second, and my favorite, in the series is still a sight to behold even to this day. When it was filmed it had what, at that point, was the largest budget for a feature film ever. That was later supplanted by True Lies and later Titanic (all of which are James Cameron films, and Avatar is allegedly around 300 million. Dude likes to spend some money.)

And allegedly, make it rain.

No. I mean he actually makes it rain.

This, along with RoboCop are two of the first R rates film I really remember watching. The moment you get to see the liquid metal (or poly-memetic alloy) Terminator walk out of the semi wreckage looks fantastic almost 20 years later. (I can still remember just staring at the movie screen in awe.) There are too many brilliant scenes within this movie for me to list in the limited space I have here, so I’ll just say the entire movie is a highlight reel. I COMMAND YOU TO WATCH THIS. Seriously if you haven’t GO and watch it now. (After you finish this of course.) The third installment plays like a bad high school production of the second film except with a massive budget. The script is kind of asinine, though at least some of the direction seems like someone was awake while filming. Reportedly Arnold said that he wanted nothing to do with the movie unless James Cameron was involved. Then they offered him 30 million. Understandably, he then took the role. The movie didn’t tank but didn’t inspire an immediate sequel either. Cut to the past summer’s Terminator. I don’t understand who would give McG any money to shoot anything after realizing that he shot the cinematic equivalent of a head trauma/rectal warts sandwich that is Charlie’s Angels and Charlie’s Angels II: The Suckening (or something like that. ) I would rather pleasure myself with a cheese grater.

I was going to put a picture of an exotic dancer here named cheese grater, but there are apparently no pictures of women that arent topless on the internet. Wait, why didnt I put that picture here?

Christian Bale seemed like an inspired choice as John Connor and Sam Worthington’s performance as the Terminator sleeper agent was a more than solid effort.(I did smile at Arnold’s “cameo” in the film.) Unfortunately everything else about the movie is kind of run of the mill, predictable or just uninteresting. For the reported 200 million that they paid for this (making it the most expensive independent film ever made, Warner Bros only acting as a distributor.) I would have asked them to try harder.

Still image from the DVD documentary, Making Terminator Salvation

If this is what we would have been putting up with for the planned trilogy, I’m glad they seem to have put this dog down. I think my nostalgia for the original films may have made me a harsher critic, but if you’re going to f^ck with my childhood, then you better wear a cup. At this point, I don’t care if there is another Terminator film ever…that is unless James Cameron decides he should write and direct it. And at that point I will be first in line.

X-Men Origins: Wolverine

Did we really need such an uneccesarily long name? Where people going to think it was documentary about actual wolverines with out the X-Men part?

 

 

Coming Soon, to a theater near you!!!

 

 

 

I was actually kind of stoked about this movie at one point. The first X-Men movie was great and the second is one of my all time favorite superhero films. (yeah there was a third one, but well…I’ll save that for another day, let’s just say I was disappointed and move on)

 

 

Brett Ratner's take on the X-Men.

 

 

 

There were certainly enough source material for a good Wolverine solo movie. Frank Miller and Mark Millar’s respective runs on the book come immediately to mind.

 

 

 

I mean the guy is like 3 or 4 hundred years old, there’s enough fodder in there for like, 10 Wolverine movies. He’s been around for the American Revolution, the Civil War, the Vietnam War, World War I and II, one of those would have made a good back drop. What’s that you say, they cover that in the first 10 minutes of the movie. Well who says war is a good back drop for a movie? Steven Speilberg, Robert Zemecks, George Lucas (if you count the Clone Wars)

 

 

My container of movies worse than Attack of the Clones.

 

 

 

, Oliver Stone…I really can go on. They do attempt to follow the Origin miniseries that Paul Jenkins had written but they boil that miniseries down to like 7 minutes on film. At least they act like they wanted to respect the source material. Ultimately I think when it became a franchise is when the movies started going downhill, similar to what happened to the Alien series. Fox had very little faith in either of these movies.

 

 

Yeah.

 

 

 

In the theater, no one can hear you snore.

 

 

 

They actually had only projected the 1st X-Men movie to make around 100 million so when it made 150 million domestic, I’m sure they thought it was just a fluke. Likewise to the success of the 1st Alien. The 2nd film in the series went on to be even larger success than the first and are some of the few instances when sequels are actually better that the first. This is when the studio I’m sure took all the credit for the films and started sharing ideas for the sequels. Words like spunky, hip kid side kick, with a skateboard or backwords hat(cause kids like those.) gay jive talking robot and/or anything that will translate well into a toy. Alien3 and X-Men: The Last Stand may not have been total bastardizations of their predecessors, but they certainly had been diluted by studio input. X-Men Origins: Wolverine and Alien Resurrection both made less than the previous films and cost considerably more. Does anyone really think the 4th films in these respective series where the best. If you are raising your hand please put it down at this point because you are a moron and we don’t need to talk…at all…ever.

 

 

X-Men Origins key demographic.

 

 

 

I say all this to make the point that a Wolverine movie had so much potential. The inclusion of Ryan Reynolds as Deadpool was absolute brilliant casting…unfortunately he’s in the movie for like fifteen minutes and when he shows up at the end his mouth is sewn shut. That’s right F(*&iING DEADPOOL CAN’T TALK IN THE LAST 10 MINUTES OF THE MOVIE. The Merc with a mouth, known for his witty banter and repartee, is neutered essentially. It’s like giving the Dukes of Hazard an orange Power Wheels. Sure it might vaguely resemble the General Lee but in the end it is not. Same way with the Wolverine movie. Hugh Jackman looks like the Wolverine from X2 but at the end of the day this just seems like a bad, long deleted scene with a ton of cameos. Snikit, Snikit, Snore.

 

 

 

I don’t know the things I’m supposed to love anymore. As a child I knew the things that could never let me down. The Ghostbusters, The Marvel Universe Square Enix and Rick Astley. In that order.

My first inkling that there was a crack in this armor was Blues Brothers 2000. The original is a brilliant piece of classic film-making, an uncharacteristic blend of music, comedy, Nazis and spiritual enlightenment.

The sequel is none of these things. It’s so terrible that James Belushi didn’t even appear in it. Here is James Belushi’s filmography:

Filmography

Year Film Role Notes
1978 The Fury Beach Bum Uncredited, Film debut
1979 Working Stiffs Ernie O’Rourke 9 episodes
1981 Thief Barry
1983 Trading Places Harvey
1983–1985 Saturday Night Live Various 33 episodes
1985 The Man with One Red Shoe Morris
1986 Little Shop of Horrors Patrick Martin Cameo Appearance
Salvador Doctor Rock
Jumpin’ Jack Flash Cab driver, police officer, Sperry repair man
About Last Night… Bernie Litgo
1987 The Principal Rick Latimer
Real Men Nick Pirandello
1988 Red Heat Det. Sgt. Arthur Ridzik
1989 K-9 Detective Michael Dooley
Homer and Eddie Homer Lanza
Who’s Harry Crumb? Man on Bus uncredited
1990 Taking Care of Business Jimmy Dworski
Mr. Destiny Larry Joseph Burrows
Masters of Menace Gypsy
Dimenticare Palermo Carmine Bonavia
Wedding Band Reverend
1991 Curly Sue Bill Dancer
Diary of a Hitman Shandy
Only the Lonely Salvatore Buonarte
Abraxas, Guardian of the Universe Principal Latimer
1992 Traces of Red Jack Dobson
Once Upon a Crime Neil
1993 Wild Palms Harry Wyckoff (mini-series)
Last Action Hero Himself
1994 Royce Shane Royce Television
Parallel Lives Television
Aaahh!!! Real Monsters Monster Hunter 8 Episodes
1995 Sahara Sergeant Joe Gunn Television
Canadian Bacon Charles Jackal
Separate Lives Tom Beckwith
Gargoyles Fang 3 episodes, 1995–1996
The Pebble and the Penguin Rocko Voice
Destiny Turns on the Radio Tuerto
Irving Gay Vampire #2
1996 Jingle All the Way Mall Santa
Race the Sun Frank Machi
Gold in the Streets Mario
Pinky and the Brain Additional voices 3 episodes
Mighty Ducks Phil Palmfeather 3 episodes
Hey Arnold! Coach Jack Wittenberg 4 episodes, 1996–1999
9: The Last Resort Salty Voice
1997 Gang Related Frank Divinci Alongside Tupac Shakur
Retroactive Frank Lloyd Time travel
Living in Peril Harrison/Oliver
Disney’s Bad Baby Dad Voice
Wag the Dog Himself (as Jim Belushi)
Total Security Steve Wegman 13 episodes
1998 Overnight Delivery Overnight Delivery Boss scenes deleted
1999 Angel’s Dance Stevie ‘The Rose’ Rosellini
Made Men Bill “The Mouth” Manucci
K-911 Detective Michael Dooley Video
My Neighbors the Yamadas Takashi voice: English version
The Florentine Billy Belasco
2000 Return to Me Joe Dayton
2001 Joe Somebody Chuck Scarett
According to Jim James “Jim” Orenthal 182 episodes, 2001–2009
ER Dan Harris 1 episode
2002 Snow Dogs Demon Voice (small role)
Pinocchio The Farmer (English voice)
K-9: P.I. Detective Michael Dooley
2003 Easy Six Elvis
2004 DysEnchanted Doctor (The Shrink)
Less Than Perfect Eddie Smirkoff
2005 Hoodwinked! Kirk the woodsman Voice
2006 Casper’s Scare School Alder Voice
The Wild Benny Voice
Tugger: The Jeep 4×4 Who Wanted to Fly[21] Tugger Voice
2007 Underdog Dan Unger (Father)
Once Upon a Christmas Village Santa Claus Voice
2008 Scooby-Doo and the Goblin King Goblin Voice
Snow Buddies Saint Bernie Voice
2010 The Ghost Writer John Maddox
The Defenders Nick Morelli Television
2011 Cougars, Inc. Dan Fox
New Year’s Eve Building Super
2012 The Secret Lives of Dorks Bronko
Thunderstruck Coach Amross
Doc McStuffins Glo-Bo Voice, 6 episodes
2014 Legends of Oz: Dorothy’s Return Lion Voice
North of Hell Les

 

 

That is not a man that looks like he makes discerning choices. And he LOVES uninspired sequels. (See Legends of Oz and K-9 sequels. Or don’t. No one else did.) Maybe it was defecating on the memory of his dead, more talented brother’s legacy. Maybe it was because Dan Akroyd can’t produce anything worth watching anymore. If James Belushi or Jean Claude Van Damme won’t do your movie, cancel it immediately, because these men will do anything. They are the ten dollar whores equivalent of the film industry. Whatever you can think of cinematic-ally, they will do. ANYTHING. AND the man that wrote this was the man I wanted to shepard Ghostbusters III in to fruition. NO! Sweet merciful Jesus, above us. No. Dan Akroyd has sadly passed his use by date.

But I’ve still got Stan Lee, right? The man that created virtually anything worth looking at in the Marvel Universe could never do any wrong, could he?

In comics, I mean. Obviously his fashion choices are a little on the unusual side. They announced sometime in 2000 that he would be writing a series called “Just Imagine Stan Lee creating the DC Universe” The man that was responsible for The X-Men, Spider-Man, The Avengers, Iron Man and the Incredible Hulk was going to put his stamp on the DC Universe. I was enthralled. There was no way this could end badly.

As it turned out Just Imagine Stan Lee molesting and tarnishing your memory of him would have been a more apt title, as I later learned upon reading it. I was stoked beyond stoked for this series initially. Unfortunately in the same way that Avengers/JLA and All-Star Batman and Robin the Boy Wonder failed to deliver, so did this series.

 

Fan Reaction to JLA/Avengers and Batman and Robin, The Boy Wonder

The Creator of the Marvel U was going to, for the first time in his career, take on the DC Universe, on his own terms. Stan Lee was given the mandate to recreate the DC Universe if he had been there in the 40s 50s and 60s. Sounds like a great idea so far doesn’t it? Like the plan just falls into place piece by piece. Like we love it when a plan comes together. It was like finding out that Playboy and Baskin Robbins and Laser Tag were teaming up to make a Roller Coaster with actual guns mounted on the front.

 

Early stage prototype

 

Unfortunately my mind oversold this one. Now picture ,if you will, your favorite movie. Let’s say its Braveheart or Lord of the Rings just fore the sake of this article. Now imagine that a Smurf or a retarded dolphin had written these cinematic masterpieces. Reading this graphic novel was kinda like meeting one of the nazgul or dementors. It was literally a soul sucking creature that caused joy to escape from me. It was almost as if Sauron gave Stan Lee a ring of power and made him the Enemy’s most terrible servant; darkness went with him, and made him cry with the voices of death. I really have a deep seeded respect for Stan Lee, but like Frank Miller, seems to be tarnishing his legend.

 

Frank Miller is responsible for this.

 

He is also responsible for this…so…

As a child both of these men mystified and astonished me on more than one occasion themselves or as a result or by product of what they had created. I hate that anything, especially the men themselves, could tarnish my thoughts of them, so I have largely stayed away from anything they have written as late and tried to simply stick with the classics that made me love their comics or characters in the first place. If you do have a similar feelings for Stan “The Man” Lee I would suggest doing the same. It’s like seeing a once towering and powerful Grandparent grow weaker with age.

 

This would feel better.

 

Square Enix has produced some of my favorite games. Final Fantasy III (or VI, if you want to go by it later renumbering in the US) is still a joy to play. Mario RPG was a strange and unique experience that helped further the sub-genre of Mario doing everything. Golf, baseball, kart racing, partying, whatever. Remarkably he does not have a game that features him plumbing, his chosen profession.

Kingdom Heart, more recently, combined the world of Square Enix RPGs and Disney vast reaches and expanse to create an unusual (and satisfying) experience, that I have difficulty adequately comparing it to something else with any accuracy.

A leader. An innovator.

Or are they? What have I played since Kingdom Hearts II (in 2005) that I adored? Granted, the various re-releases of the Dragon Quest series or Final Fantasy have been welcome additions to the libraries and consoles they have been made apart of. I’m not going to count those or remixes or anything that isn’t technically “original” work.

I don’t know that I have enjoyed a Final Fantasy game, I mean REALLY enjoyed since IX. I played and purchased Last Remnant. The game is beautiful. I enjoyed the combat system and game for the most part. I’m not implying that they aren’t capable of doing anything correct. I am certainly not saying that quality work isn’t still coming from the studio (the upcoming Kingdom Hearts III is likely to astound and delight me.) But I feel that alot of the love and adoration I heap upon the company is because of the past laurels. Nintendo, a staple of my youth has experienced more than a few missteps in the  ensuing years. But as the recent Mario Kart 8 is proof of, they still know how to make a quality game. I want to love the Square Enix catalogue like I used to. It wasn’t just a particular series or genre, it was everything they produced. I am in no way giving up on them. I just want to love them like I used to.