Tuesday, June 26, 2012

No "Thin Man" remake?

It's been reported that after the disappointing returns on "Dark Shadows," Warner Bros. will not be remaking "The Thin Man" with Johnny Depp.

I'm of mixed emotions. One on hand, it's a classic! Hollywood shouldn't remake classics! On the other hand, the film is 80 years old! Perhaps the statute of limitations has run out and it's time to see what modern Hollywood can bring to the classic. (Color for starters, then Johnny Depp).

We haven't heard the end of this though. It's too good a property to leave alone, and, let's face it,   it's the only film Hollywood hasn't remade  yet.

But who....George Clooney and Rachel Weisz?

Friday, June 22, 2012

Movie review: The Avengers

Why in the world isn't DC Comics backing a truck full of money up to Joss Whedon's house to have him write/direct a Superman movie or a JLA movie? This is incomprehensible. And they didn't want him for Wonder Woman? Insane!

Great action sequences, great effects. Dialogue that made everyone distinct. And, a genuine love of comic books. This is what he would have done if each episode of Buffy had a $200 million budget.

And even with a film crowded with heroes, everyone got a chance to shine either in action or exposition sequences. The first two-thirds are the characters fighting each other, the last third they're fighting the aliens. Just like the comic books! And this is the difference between DC and Marvel. In Marvel books the characters are always at each other's throats, DC didn't start that til relatively recently.

During the climax I was thinking of the last 5 minutes of the last episode of Angel where the sky opened up and these monsters started pouring out (including a dragon). The series ended at that point, but Joss picks it up right where he left off for the last battle sequence.

Very funny, making Mark Ruffalo, the most soft-spoken actor in Hollywood play the Hulk, what a great contrast. And the Hulk looked like Ruffalo. (minor quibble, in the Hulk's first appearance he's uncontrollable, when it's time to smash the aliens, he's suddenly rational.)

I know this review is late, but if you've been on the fence, go see it in a theater while you still have the chance.

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Overdue, half-hearted DVD review: Bender's Big Score

I keep trying to watch this, and I keep not being able to get through it. I'm a big Futurama fan, but this DVD seemed like a half hour episode stuffed with 90 minutes of filler. It also reminded me of those 1960s Warner Bros. cartoons where the original artists had left, and nothing worked: the music, the timing, the characterizations. Nothing. I also kept thinking of those pathetic Green Acres, Beverly Hillbillies reunion movies in the 70s and 80s.

Look at the scamming aliens in this. I know they're not supposed to be pretty, but the design is just ugly. And where are the overbites? They look like they stepped out of different cartoon altogether, like a mid-70s Ralph Bakshi work. And they don't sound right either.

Once again, this is from someone who loves Futurama. I have not seen the new episodes since the return, I have to check them out. I'm thinking they just had a hard time getting back in gear. Or as the French say, "The first pancake goes to the dog."

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Cool new covers

My ebooks have cool new art. Clip art, it's wonderful. The trick is finding models who don't have this soulless look in their eyes.

One of the oddest pictures I saw in my search was that of a cheerleader with a big smile offering a pizza. I'm not sure who that's supposed to appeal to...except ofcourse everyone.

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

CD Review: That's Why God Made the Radio

Every professional review I've read so far has started the same way: "I really didn't expect to like this album, but..."

I must admit that despite being a big Brian Wilson fan, I felt the same way. When I heard the Beach Boys play "Do It Again," recently to promote this album I thought, "We don't need another album of the Beach Boys covering the Beach Boys."

Their live performances on talk shows also scared me a bit.

But it's all new material, they sound amazing and it's possibly the best Beach Boys album since...dare I say it..."Pet Sounds?"

I'll have to listen to it a few more times, but it's all there, the '50s harmonies, the songs of surf and sand from the early albums, the introspection from the late 60s albums. And yet is all sounds new. Brian's in top form.

This is one of those albums that are best enjoyed while bicycling through the park, or turning down the lights and putting on the head phones.

Even the critics who didn't like the CD still liked the last three songs, but the standout for me is "Strange World," a hook-laden song ready for the radio. And ironically, sounds least like a Beach Boys song. It's a cross between "Life in a Northern Town," and Depeche Mode.

The Boys did something no one expected, once again provide a soundtrack for summer.

Saturday, June 2, 2012

Gay Green Lantern first reaction

I haven't read the book yet so I probably shouldn't say anything...and I've been telling anyone who'd listen that the JSA has to leave the past behind in favor of a new start...but...

Making GL gay just seems like an act of trendiness rather than an act of good writing.

Think about 1986. The Crisis on Infinite Earths reboot. Dr. Light, Dr. Mid-Nite and Wildcat were each replaced with minority women (Asian, black, Hispanic respectively). Remember? Of course not. It seemed like a good idea for about an hour, then all three characters disappeared and were forgotten within months. No further thought was put into it than, "Hey, I have an idea, let's replace B-listers with minority women." Then the thinking stopped.

Hopefully I'm wrong.

It is hilarious reading comments from people who say putting a gay character in a comic book will turn children gay. I've been reading comics for 40 years and I still can't fly!