Archive for the ‘reviews’ Category

Holland

SLeepy HollowSo…Ichabod Crane chops off a Redcoat’s head during the Revolutionary War, is buried by his witch wife, wakes up 250-odd years later after the Headless Horseman arises in Sleepy Hollow (and chops off a few heads), teams up with a resourceful deputy and together they learn they’re about to enter into a vast conspiracy of biblical prophecies and historical oddities encoded in George Washington’s secret bible.

That’s the in and out of SLEEPY HOLLOW, a show I simply assumed would be too stupid to enjoy as anything other than “Ohh, these pilots keep getting sillier, don’t they?” tongue-clucking. But no. Through an irritating combination of decent-enough acting, competent direction, a solid-enough budget to keep this from looking like a backdoor pilot from an episode of SUPERNATURAL, and dialogue that suggests the showrunners know just how silly all this is – and also the brief  presence of Clancy Brown, who, like sea salt, makes everything just slightly better – this was actually a fairly enjoyable hour of pilot.

Unfortunately, it’s also next to impossible to say what this show will be like on a week-to-week basis.  (more…)

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braak

the_wolverine_digital_exclusiveHere’s the thing.  I actually don’t know if I’m in the tank for Wolverine or not.  As I have written, Wolverine is one of my favorite characters.  But am I the kind of fan who is going to like his favorite character no matter what, or the kind of fan who is never going to be satisfied with a particular interpretation because it doesn’t live up to the one in my head?  I never watched Constantine (or, to be honest, Wolverine Origins X-Men or whatever the fuck the actual title was) because I had a suspicion it would make me want to put my foot through a wall.

On the other hand, I happily forgave Hugh Jackman for being too tall after he wrecked all those guys in the mansion in X2.

As it turns out, The Wolverine is actually pretty good, which means I may never know the answer for sure.

(more…)

Anyway, for this brief moment, I thought: What if right now, just before these bros could get into their giant robot, the monster struck, and it ate every single one of them? And it turned out the whole film was actually about an entirely different set of characters?

Holland

Hi, Battlestar Galactica robots, it’s me again.

HU-MAN NOISE GENERATOR, WELCOME

old-cylon-new-cylonOK, look, so, I’ve finished up season 2 now, and I feel a little stupid.

IT IS EXPECTED

…Dick. Anyway, remember during my write-up of season 1, where I made fun of your sekrit plan being “Get Boomer knocked up”?

YES, WE LAUGHED AT YOUR LACK OF FOREKNOWLEDGE.

Great.

OUR LAUGHTER IS DEEPLY UNPLEASANT!

Fine. Look, I didn’t realize your plan was actually dictated to you by your god.

OUR ONE GOD TOLD US TO HAVE BABIES, YES. NOW WHO FEELS LIKE THE BIGOT?  (more…)

braak

World’s Edge
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From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

This article is about the film. For other uses, see World’s Edge (disambiguation).

World’s Edge
 
Directed by Neil Blomkamp
Produced by Michael G. Wilson
Barbara Broccoli
Screenplay by Neil Blomkamp
Mark Boal
Based on James Bond 
by Ian Fleming
Starring Idris Elba
Archie Panjabi
Tom Hardy
Sharlto Copley
Aishwarya Rai Bachchan
Don Cheadle
Ralph Fiennes
Music by Trent Reznor
Atticus Ross
Cinematography Emmanuel Lubezki
Editing by Stuart Baird
Kate Baird
Studio Eon Productions
Distributed by MGM/UA Communications Company
Release date(s)
  • 29 June 2015 (London, premiere)
Running time 131 minutes
Country United Kingdom
Language English
Budget $75 million
Box office $2.2 billion
Idris Elba as James Bond in World's Edge

Idris Elba as James Bond in World’s Edge

World’s Edge (2015) is the twenty-fifth entry in the James Bond film series and the first to star Idris Elba as the fictional MI6 agent James Bond.  The film is the first to allude to the fan-theory that James Bond is a cover identity.  The theory would be stated explicitly in the twenty-sixth entry.
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Holland

So it’s been a few hours, and now I feel I can talk about Man of Steel without simply writing the word “Fuck” one thousand times.

Man of SteelBut guys…that is really the only rational feeling one can have at the end of that movie.

After my initial sense that the movie may not be spectacular, but would certainly be, y’know, Superman-esque, in a way that, say, letting another man raise his wheezing bastard child might not, I have to admit…this one may be worse.

Because as much as I can complain about how wrong-headed Superman Returns was, at the end of that movie, at least Smallville and Metropolis aren’t largely smoking, death-filled craters. Man of Steel can boast no such claims.

I’m going to start asking a lot of questions very shortly – which means I am going to tell you a lot of spoilers but that is because I GENUINELY THINK YOU SHOULD NOT WATCH THIS MOVIE, so trust me, I am ol’ Public Service Holland from here on out.

But first I suppose I should tell you all about the things I didn’t hate about this movie, in a brief list format:

  1. The casting – Honestly, everyone here does a bang-up job with what they’ve got, starting with Henry Cavill, whom I look forward to seeing in a good Superman movie, should one ever come about. Looking the part’s one thing, but he has that calm, assured voice when speaking to authority that sounds just right, and there’s that little smile he gives every now and again, works great. Amy Adams as Lois Lane was more plucky than flinty, but still, it worked. Laurence Fishburne, nice stuff. The Kents, okey-doke. Even all the secondaries are filled out with dependable character actors.
  2. Pa Kent – This was one of the more controversial choices called out early in the trailers, Jonathan Kent advising his son against saving people if it means revealing himself. And, in fact, allowing himself to die rather than have his son save him in front of a crowd. It’s hardly the inspirational Pa Kent we’ve come to expect, but it’s an interesting idea. Jonathan Kent as a guy who is himself totally upended by what Clark might mean to the world, and is just trying to get the kid to adulthood so he can figure that out, without scaring the shit out of everyone first. I can appreciate that interpretation. Not my PREFERRED idea of Pa Kent (in that this version is more like Uncle Ben, and Superman is not Spider-Man), but…sure, let’s try something new.
  3. The…action? In that I appreciate that there was some action, after that last movie was mostly about a guy who lifted heavy things? There’s punching, and I do like a Superman who punches and flies fast. So…hooray.
  4. Faora – OK, that woman was pretty rad. Not a lot to her, but of all the Kryptonian Murder People in this movie, I think I liked her most.
  5. The costume, I guess, works okay. At the end of the day, you don’t really give a shit about the trunks not being there, is what I’m saying.
  6. OK, that last line. “Welcome to The Planet, Clark.” That’s pretty good, even though it screams of “Line of dialogue David Goyer’s been sitting on for a dozen years now.”

AND NOW, SOME QUESTIONS:

1. Who the hell was in charge of this thing? I mean honestly? (more…)

Holland

ImageLook, I won’t lie: I came to DC’s new Superman comic, Superman Unchained (a title that really should be Superman Unchained! but then I am in charge of nothing) with a bit of dread.

On the one hand, Scott Snyder’s been doing astounding stuff on Batman, managing to craft these big, epic stories that still feel very personal, with plot points that matter beyond any initial shocks (seriously, go read volumes one and two, “Court of Owls” and “City of Owls“, for some of the best Batman comics produced in the last 20 years). Add to that his fantastic creator-owned series American Vampire, an honest-to-god fresh take on a tired-ass genre, and I can comfortably say the guy’s earned a fair bit of trust.

Then there’s Jim Lee on the art. And when Lee is on, he concocts some really exciting visuals and Platonic ideal levels of Superhero Art. He is also one of the only people who can draw Superman’s new costume as though all those extra lines make any kind of sense (they don’t, and the boots are stupid and the sleeve cuffs are too long and there’s not enough yellow and jesus what is with that hair? but the point is, Lee’s the guy who designed the stupid thing so he’d better be able to draw it well).

On the other hand…. (more…)