(169 replies, posted in Episodes)

Y'all are so mad.

"Storytelling is dead."
"This whole thing is fucked up beyond any kind of decency and respect for a story."
"There haven't been any new ideas introduced in the movies since ESB."
"I'm fully prepared for this to be a shitshow of spectacular proportions."

Just wow.
I thought I'd hung up my TFN-era defense tactics, but goshdarnit I will roll up these sleeves and punch some love back into this internet if need be. I'd do it on Facebook, but those amateur critics don't deserve this epic a monologue:


I've gotten plenty of fun entertainment for the cost of my ticket/BluRay each time. Don't get me started on the actions figures and these lively discussions.
What's holding up you guys? Too knowledgeable to enjoy things? Can't stand that someone else is doing it? Jaded by multimedia supersaturation?

It can't be the story alone cuz I watched it too, and I have watched, read, listened and written a lot of Star Wars and I still think TFA and TLJ are exceptional, respectful entries in the Saga. Perhaps a tad shallow in depth compared to the "Legends" novels they're supplanting, but I am truly disturbed that so many die hard fans don't get why these are great.
The momentum "#notmyluke" got made me physically ill. In The Last Jedi, did you see Mark Hamill turning in arguably his best Luke performance yet? Cuz I sure as hell did.

So. What's the real problem here? I'm sincerely trying to understand the hate for the sequels because I have tried and tried and I don't. Even after the critiques, complaints and CinemaSins, every time I watch them, I have fun. Are there plot points I can easily pick apart in the first viewing? Things I think could have been done better? Sure. I've got a degree in this shit.
What impresses me is that it is still following the trilogy structure Uncle George established with some new twists and turns, it's still clearly about generations and legacy, like the prequels/OT, and we've seen new and interesting Force abilities, we've gotten lovable new characters while getting some respect given to the classics, some fun, disgusting and scary creatures, endearing moments and enough sexual tension to make E.L. James blush.

And I'm not even talking about the spinoffs, which are the EU novels of my newly-obsessive preteen years brought to life.
I'm pretty happy with the Disney-built resurgence we've gotten, since when the closest thing we had to a fresh character post-Episode III was Ahsoka frakkin' Tano. To this day, whenever she calls Anakin "Skyguy"... my balls jump into my abdomen. They haven't wrecked it. They've taken 40 years of off-screen lore and started working it back towards its original medium. They've salvaged a fading franchise and blown it up to a proportion that gives countless new people the opportunity to come in and put their stamp on it. They've legitimized fanfilms, and the fans are ungrateful.

Every time I see a Star Wars fan go on an angry rant, I can't help but think they're missing the principle lesson of the OT. Everyone is smiling at the end of RotJ, you guys. And in the episodes they're not, they at least haven't given up hope. Their eyes are on the horizon, searching for it.

Alright. Got that out of my system.

I love Star Wars. I wouldn't be the man I am without it.
'Nuff said.


(10 replies, posted in Creations)

I helped!

[watches viewcount skyrocket]


I'm geeking out watching two people with whom I have 'saber dueled finding themselves in an adventure.


(57 replies, posted in Episodes)

"Oh no, I'm that guy."

That's right, The Internet. That Guy is YOU


(2,056 replies, posted in Off Topic)

See: Legend of the Guardians.

I'm going to skip over my repeat viewing of Beyond this weekend and mention last week's random decision of Ben-Hur. I've never seen much of the original, but I thought this new one was really good. A little non-traditionally structured, as in unafraid to spend more time on things it finds interesting instead of just "the main arc", but very enjoyable.

Can I offer anyone a man-crush?

My g/f informed me that the book was entitled "Ben-Hur: A Tale of the Christ" and we couldn't stop laughing at the suggestion of a Bible Cinematic Universe.
"This is a race, isn't it? I'm a racist."


(41 replies, posted in Creations)

Boter, I got your Hoth exteriors covered.

BigDamnArtist wrote:

Hell. The talent in this communiry we could write our own fight sequence and shoot it ourselves. Xwing road trip tongue

Hold on...i gotta go write a thing...

I am so down. When the road trip movie came out, I was so sad I hadn't seen it in time to participate.
Plus, the camera loves my car.

First Class isn't J-Law's best moment, she's still a little rough around the edges. Silver Linings Playbook is what really got me hooked on her, though I guess Hunger Games and First Class kinda pointed me in that direction.

IIRC she was pretty good in DofP, but she is not the part of that film that's been playing on repeat in my mind.
(Yeah, it's the ice slide. Seriously, YEARS I've been waiting to see that. Decades even, if you count pre-movie times!)

I can't, I just-- there's so many opinions and I've been talking about these movies for fourteen years...

1 - Yep.
This is always a competitor for my favorite. I love the simplicity, particularly the Logan/Rogue story and we actually get to spend time with Cyclops being Cyclops (my fave X-Man).

2 - More yep (but where did Storm's accent go?)
Everyone loves this one, I don't even have to say things.

3 - Ugh. Why did you do this to yourself? "Class five mutant"? Phoenix is a split personality now? Go home, movie. You're an idiot.
When Wolverine and Cyclops hugged at the end of X2, did they swap personalities? Is that one of their powers?

Origins - Why is the opening credits not the story you chose to tell? No, let's retcon things and do a standard betrayal/revenge plot. Do you love misc. X-Men characters? Good, because this movie likes to kill and/or use them in pointless ways!

FC - Nice. I mean, those are not the First Class characters and no one except Charles, Mystique or Magneto really matter at the end of the movie, but tying it into the Cuban Missle Crisis was good thinking (tho not the first scifi story to focus on that event. Check out SeaQuest's "Second Chance" sometime). Magneto, omg. This was originally going to be "Magneto Origins" but I'm guessing someone said it has to be about the good guys and it shows.

TW - Okay, now that's how you do Wolverine/revenge movie. This story originally happened before Wolverine met the X-Men, but whatever, good job.

DofP - Hey look, it's an X-Men movie. Like, this is how X-Men comics read. If the other movies didn't exist, this would still work, just like picking up any random issue.
It only took 14 years, but I got my iced-up Iceman doing the ice slide. Thank you, Bryan Singer. You have done alright by me (but you still have odd taste in character design).

[huddles in corner hugging Jim Lee comics]


(25 replies, posted in Movie Stuff)

"I am sick to death of superhero franchises. We need to put a stop to them, and quickly."

Well, I can't accept the premise of your review, so...  big_smile


It did feel flat, I'll give you that. The future prologue just jumps in and exists only as a reason for Wolverine to exist in the past. In the comics, Kitty 'phases' her mind back, which kind of made sense with her powers in the way that people shooting kinetic energy from their eyes makes sense, but they didn't really explain that here, or how she does it to others. From the trailer, I thought it was going to be work from Prof. X and a machine, or in conjunction with someone else's powers. Kitty just learning how to do it is pretty weak.
However, with her being able to do this, nothing in the future bore any suspense. I knew how this film was going to end back when I saw the first trailer, and that nothing that happened to anyone in the future would be permanent. Storm's death wasn't shocking, nor upsetting. It's Storm. They weren't going to let that stick, even though they didn't see fit to give her anything to do except use her powers.
The other X-Men did get some pretty gruesome deaths at the hands of the Sentinels that were a little tough to watch, but none of them carried any weight and I didn't buy into the tension the finale was trying to build. In that regard, I was disappointed.
The only difference is I assumed Wolverine would get trapped in his younger mind and he would be the reason the events of the trilogy get changed, rather than them simply playing out differently because of the events of this film. Him 'snapping to' when he reaches the future seems kind of lazy, it'd have been far more interesting if he had gotten to consciously relive his life. I am happy they un-killed Jean and Cyclops, for what it's worth, but it's a shame that this so suddenly rewrites whatever canon the previous films had. This ending just turned First Class into a reboot rather than a prequel.

However, in terms of adapting "Days of Future Past", the film did a great job. The major details are still there. As a stand-alone, this is pretty cool. It plays out much like one of the recent Marvel/DC straight-to-video animated features would. As a sequel to X3, it makes very little sense. There is a huge leap it makes from X3's ending to DofP's beginning. If you shove The Wolverine in there and kind of accept that the world started ending while Logan was in exile, it helps, but eh. You can tell there wasn't a plan.
As a sequel to First Class, it works a little better, but with all the time used explaining why Wolverine is here, we don't get the same focus on some of the characters that we did. Aside from Xavier, Magneto, Mystique and Beast, everyone else was killed off between films. Well, Havok was a cameo, which was disappointing. It's neat that he learned to control his powers and all, but showing him (and Quicksilver, for that matter) and then dumping him once his scene is over is the main problem X3 and Origins: Wolverine had.
The end of First Class shows Magneto and the Hellfire Club ready to go kick some less-evolved ass, and we get to see none of that. Skip to Magneto in jail and they're all dead? Come on. Fassbender's Magneto is still amazing, and I was left feeling like we got to see him in full form, but his actions in the past really didn't do anything that made us relate him more with McKellan's version.
"So, you were always an asshole." Pretty much.
However, I did really enjoy Xavier and Mystique's arcs. The allusion to drug addiction rocked my world, and giving Raven a time-travelling revenge intervention was pretty interesting. Her moment of discovering that Trask was responsible for the experimentation, torture and death of her friends(?) is exactly the kind of moment we needed to explain how we get from Lawrence's Mystique to Romijn's. Killing Trask was the moment that made her "evil", and seeing her standing on the edge before they pulled her back was great. Hopefully we will see some ramifications of that in Apocalypse.

Anyway, if you haven't read X-Men comics and you thought it was difficult to make room for all the characters in the films, oh boy. Outside of major events, you can have multiple plots running for issues that only peek in on what someone is doing until the one or two-parter comes where their plot is finally resolved. Even some main characters can be absent for long periods of time. Outside of the core roster, there are so many characters and most of them are boiled down to 'this guy has that powers so he can do this for them'. There's no time to flesh everyone out, but they do try to give most of them a decent story or scene when they can.
I'm amazed the films managed to show us as many characters as they did, even if the bulk of them are glorified cameos.

But hey, we got to see a proper Iceman, finally. So that was pretty cool.

X-Men needs to be a series. It's too big for this formula.
"Heroes" actually did a better X-Men than X-Men, in some ways.


(24 replies, posted in Off Topic)

Haha, Vern's paragraph about "A buddy who loves Michael Bay" hits me right at home.
I can't believe how much I've written about these films, rushing to their defense, when really, they're a phase that comes and goes, and not even in my Top 10 all time faves.
Plenty of ammunition, I guess. No one gets riled when I talk about how good A Beautiful Mind was, lol.
Oh well, it's my day off and I ain't doing much of anything else. ;-)

A review like that, I can't get into because it essentially reads at "So this happened, that was dumb. Oh, then the next scene happened and that was dumb too". I don't see an actual reason here, but negativity and a guy trying super hard to be clever and hateful. Vern has a problem with the opening scene having a location subtitle, for crying out loud.
"I can’t help but be sad that this is what we are willing to accept as entertainment."
The thing about that is, this guy says he went in expecting and wanting to hate it, and surprise, he did.

Boter wrote:

*Screw it, looking it up... okay, Blackout, a Pave Low, not Apache. Still.

"MH-53 pilot, power down now. Have your crew step out or we will kill you."
I watched that teaser more times than is probably healthy, and seven years later, here we are. lol. I knew next to nothing about the franchise prior to that freakin' teaser, it's all their fault.

Seriously though, who does the TF trailers? I need to look this up, because he/she/they is/are my hero/es.

It sounds like we're all in agreement that the robots didn't get enough focus. Boter's hit the nail on the head, the first film did a fairly good job of establishing the characters, particularly the Decepticons in their unique vehicles, without telling you much about them.
With a series like this, that has a long history in various forms of media, a large complaint I've seen is that a character is over-looked or underutilized, but that comes back to the "years of history" vs. "two hour movie" argument. Think about another action film, let's default to Die Hard... how much do we know about those villains?
Nothing. They each have their own signature look, we get a little feel for their personality, and they each play their role. For TF1, that worked out pretty well. #2 is when they started throwing tons of random characters at you and DotM was just a mess. "Wait, Barricade's still alive?" Scorponok's random 3-shot cameo into RotF was one of the biggest WTF moments aside from robo-balls and I'd swear they were just using characters they still had on file in order to save VFX time/budget.
Hence seeing 'white Blackout' in RotF as well, and all the protoform 'Cons in the sequels. The cost and time it takes to make these characters look as good as they do is undoubtedly a big reason we can't have a film just about them, but they could definitely find a way to focus the story better.

The nice thing about DotM is they killed ALL THE DECEPTICONS. Like, seriously, all of them.
Hopefully AoE remembers back to the first film on how to introduce it's antagonists. Gunface seems like a step in the right direction.

KayRule wrote:

It really says a lot about Michael Bay and the Transformers films when you can show me a giant robot riding a dinosaur wielding a sword and I still have no interest in seeing the film.

If we get a DinoRiders movie out of this, it'll be a win regardless.


(24 replies, posted in Off Topic)

Dorkman wrote:

He's got no qualms about shitting on his last film if he thinks it'll trick you into paying for his next, which he will happily lie about.

He's not wrong about the writer's strike, TF2 was not the only victim of it. I don't see anything in this article that isn't true, and the corrections he made between films seem in line with what was said here, so I don't have a problem with accepting his word as genuine. You know you don't always end up with the film you set out to make.
There's a difference between shitting on your past movies (See: Shia) and recognizing their flaws, and this article reads like the latter. (To me, anyway. It's possible I'm too nice.)

Boter wrote:

were hey ever referred to as "Transformers" up to now?

Turturro first dropped the term in TF2, can't think of another instance. Marky Mark's use of it surprised me too, though I'm glad they're not trying to dust public awareness under the rug again. That was one of 2's biggest mistakes. 

Marty J wrote:

Some parts of DotM (like Sam trying to get a job) almost worked for me. ALMOST.

lol. That's one of the parts I can't stand. You can skip over the job hunt and go straight to the Malkovich interview and the movie doesn't lose anything. The film took too long to warm up. It repeated the info from the prologue in the narrative, focused too long on characters that didn't end up mattering, things like that.
Actually, thinking about it, all 3 films are guilty of this.


(2,056 replies, posted in Off Topic)

That's surprising. I helped host a large variety of screenings during my time as a theater supervisor, but we never had orders strict as that. It was first come, first serve and we gave passes to any show for the remainder of the night to anyone who showed up too late.

As for the film itself, that's pretty much how I remember it, Marty. It was kind of cool, decent characters, but nothing overly special. Honestly, it kind of felt like a turn-of-the-century TV movie. I learned a few things about trains, so yay.


(24 replies, posted in Off Topic)

Teague wrote:

PSA: When posting a YouTube video using the handy [ video ] tag, remove the "s" from https://

90% of the time, that "s" is why the embed is failing.

Tried multiple things, Teague, including dropping the "s". I can't get a consistent fix whenever I post one, so I just said screw it.

Ewing wrote:

It's not that it isn't a high art masterpiece, it's that the action sequences are constructed like shit.

I understand peoples' viewpoint on the action for the first film, which is a style they may not like, but the ground-level and shaky was all part of showing it from the human perspective. Some people also see that perspective as a flaw, but for the first film I ate it up. It continued too strongly through the series though, as it became evident we were going to get little to no real personal story on the characters everyone showed up to see.
However, in my opinion Dark of the Moon had the best and most coherent action of the series. It's my favorite film of the trilogy, despite it's first act. On top of that, the freeway chase and Optimus vs. Sentinel were among my favorite action set-pieces of the year, but getting people to actually watch them with an open mind doesn't happen. Still, once the action starts in DotM, the camera backs up and focuses on the Transformers more than the people, which is something it's predecessors insisted against. That's what has me interested in the action this time, it has evolved and in the right direction.

I honestly do agree with the Dorkman's 'insulting garbage' standpoint, as far as the sense of humor is concerned. The Bad Boys grotesque, racist slapstick is out of place here, and the major downside I've had to tolerate with Bay being at the helm, but I've been willing to because omg, ILM. Part of what's got me interested for #4 is that Bay has said he was dialing back the humor this time around.
Then again, the guy also said he was done after 3, so grain of salt.

And then there's a giant metal dinosaur. So there's that. (I've never liked the dinobots.)
Actually, what really interests me is the "We found a Transformer!" plot. It's nice and simple, like 'a boy and his car', let's just see if they can get more than just that right. Until now, these have been playing out a lot like disaster films, with the Transformers taking the role of the twister/volcano/etc, so it'd be nice if they could make something a bit more personal on the side of the title characters. DotM got close, but it was still more about Sam & Co. than it was the Autobots. We don't know anything about Optimus' personal history, other than he's from a war-torn planet and that was rough. Even one of the humans sitting down and having a heart-to-heart with him would be great. "So how'd you end up here?", something.
The rare scenes of just Transformers talking among themselves are always a pure joy, it's a shame we can't get a whole film that way.

It's a complicated interest I have in these films, lol. Love/hate, something. Too damn cool to ignore, too ridiculous to state a serious defense. People like them or they don't, but given how much hate there is, I'm left wondering just how they're making so much freakin' money. 

Invid wrote:

There are existing stories to draw on if they really wanted to.

Actually, they have been. The first two sampled bits and pieces and took a ton of liberties, but DotM was based on the G1 arc 'The Ultimate Doom', and did a fine job of adapting it (story-wise). I was surprised when I stumbled across those episodes afterward. I've been getting into TF: Prime since the Superbowl trailer hit, and there is definitely some good stuff there that these films will likely never touch. The show didn't start getting good until the children became the backdrop rather than the focus, and I don't see that happening just yet.

Eddie wrote:

The brilliance of the design of the original cartoons was that they were blocky and chunky with no more than two primary colors and distinctive silhouettes.

Heh, until I got into the films, I actually had the same problem with the show, on the rare occasion I'd see it. "Wait, who is he again?" Aside from the main 3-4 characters, I never knew which robots were who. 
That was probably indifference more than anything though.

redxavier wrote:

I didn't much like Pacific Rim, but at least that movie did robots so much better.

Agreed. Big, chunky, simplistic slow things. The movie, ugh, but now those were some robots.
I was super fond of Real Steel's bots as well, though that only skimmed the surface of robot/human allegory. I don't think we've yet seen a live-action film that is actually about robots. Wall-E knew what's up.


(24 replies, posted in Off Topic)

Just because I love watching film enthusiasts get all mad that a series based on toy robot cars isn't a high art masterpiece.

The trailer's cool, as usual. I still say Michael Bay was the man for the job initially (if you don't believe me, take a moment to look at the other action/scifi films that came out in 07 and compare styles), though after this one I would like it if someone else took the reins and got back to basics a bit. It's starting to get weird. Like, Transformers: The Movie weird.


(100 replies, posted in Off Topic)

Aside from the Emmerich one, I don't believe I've ever seen one of the old ones in their entirety. Definitely seen parts, really, really tacky parts from the many sequels.
Looking forward to that original cut hi-def version coming out soon, I'll definitely sit down and watch that.


(216 replies, posted in Episodes)

Plus, you have to show how the human element is unable to deal with a super powered villain in order to help establish that the Avengers are actually pretty b.a.

That prologue actually feels like a straight up comic book story that'd be released prior to some title-spanning crossover. I can't not picture it in comic book art any time I watch it.


(100 replies, posted in Off Topic)

EDIT: Boy, was I on the wrong page when I clicked 'Reply'. Bear with me.

Plus, destroying a city is kind of the whole point of Godzilla. He was destroying cities before destroying cities was cool.
It was mostly cuz of wars and nukes and stuff and people didn't really enjoy that so much.

Also, let's keep in mind... it's a movie about a giant lizard destroying a city. It ain't gonna be Inception.
I'm just hoping they find something new to discuss. The bit about nuclear tests being a coverup is a good start, not bad as historical retcons go. If Godzilla had helped mankind advance their civilization or was hidden on the moon this whole time, I wouldn't even rent it.

Invid wrote:

I, for one, am tired of darker more realistic takes.

Oh come on, Resolute was awesome. Dark/gritty/realistic is cool and everybody knows it.
Besides, how else would you do a film like this nowadays? PacRim did the colorful/dark thing of the early 00's that was all *thought* was realistic (Oh, Spider-Man), but it did not go over well.


(23 replies, posted in Off Topic)

The way I see it (as I'm sure many others do), anything after T2 is just a fanfilm anyway.
I'll still go watch some silvery, red-eyed androids shoot up some stuff, why not. Salvation was pretty neat, what I saw of the Sarah Connor show was alright. (We don't talk about T3.)


(23 replies, posted in Off Topic)

The latest news I read said it's still Terminator 5.
It's all wibbly-wobbly-timey-wimey at this point, who knows what they're trying to do.


(23 replies, posted in Off Topic)

The Lego Movie's gotta be the most recent, unless I missed some detail. Dredd was another good example, the simple nature of it was what got everyone's attention in the first place.
Oh, I just watched This is The End last weekend, and have been thinking about it since. A bit sillier than the examples in this thread, but I think it meets the requirements.

Anyway, point is I think they happen somewhat often, it just depends on how strict you're being with the requirements. Unfortunately, it does seem like the ease of access to filmmaking is increasing the number of people involved but decreasing the number who fully understand how to achieve a complete story. This has been an on-going trend, particularly in scifi/action films who are determined to set themselves up for a franchise, but in doing so, skip out of actually telling a full story up front, or try to tell too much. Ender's Game was probably my biggest disappointment recently. While I liked it, they just couldn't figure out how to make the book flow into a film narrative. Though, it certainly did a better job of condensing scenes than The Last Airbender. [shudder]

I'm not sure how to factor in cultural relevance/acceptance, so I'm focusing on a film that, whether you liked it or not, delivers what the premise promises.


(169 replies, posted in Off Topic)

Doctor Submarine wrote:

To be fairer, Marvel's featured Black Widow really prominently in the past few years, she apparently has a very big role in the new Captain America, and I'd be shocked if she didn't get a solo film in Phase 3.

[crosses fingers]


(169 replies, posted in Off Topic)

That poster is going on my wall. That's how hard I laughed.


(50 replies, posted in Episodes)

bullet3 wrote:

Having stupid nonsensical computer interfaces and code scrolling by totally pulls you out of the narrative every time.

I guess I always reacted to coding the same way I do when someone says a 555 phone number. Usually it flashes by so fast, the shot is there to say "they're coding", it accomplishes it, and we move on.
If you've got a consultant on board who wants to whip some up, sure, but it's a detail I've never focused much on.
Except Hackers. Their cute little backdoor hacking apps are hilarious.
And I've often wondered just how one reads Matrix code (is a blonde a stream of symbols or just one character on the top of a stream?), but w/e.


(169 replies, posted in Off Topic)

Whoa, that is amazing. Good for him.


(169 replies, posted in Off Topic)

No, it doesn't.
And I call analogy shenanigans. For example, I highly doubt that Guardians watered down Drax so pro-wrestler Dave Bautista could play the role. They said "Hey, we need a big tough guy" and so they found one, but I'm certain he still had to audition and they picked him from any number of candidates.

Prior to that, I think everyone assumed it'd be the Rock or Vin Diesel. Funny how that worked out.