Saturday, October 22, 2011
So I finally got around to seeing “Green Lantern” since I missed it when it was in theaters…
…and I really wish I didn’t.
Despite all the critical disdain that this big budget, big screen adaptation of the DC Comics character had gotten, my overall reaction is that it isn’t nearly as bad as so many have said it is (in all honesty, I found it way better than say, “X-Men: First Class”, which I still feel only received positive reviews because it wasn’t the shit-fest that so many had anticipated it to be), but what really pissed me off to no extent was the fuck-stickery that happened with the character and the source material in general.
Hal Jordan, played here by a miscast Ryan Reynolds (who I was never that fond of in the first fucking place), is a fearful pilot in this movie. Yes folks, Hal Jordan is a bit of a sissy. Anyone who has read their share of Green Lantern comics with Hal as the main character knows that if it’s one thing Hal isn’t, it’s fearful. That’s the whole point of being a Green Lantern, is having NO fear. I understand how this is changed here for the film’s script to tell an origin story and make Hal look like an underdog, but for fuck’s sake did they have to make so pussified here?
As far as the mythology goes, it was hit and miss. Having Tomar explain the ideas of willpower and the history of the Guardians was cool and relatively faithful, but the fact that there is so little included of Oa, the other Lanterns, and that there is little to no explanation or reasoning of Sinestro’s intentions, that most of the story comes off as being plain old fucking retarded. Oh yeah, and Hector Hammond annoyed the living fucking shit out of me too, and the alterations to the story of Parallax make me want to shit myself in frustration.
All those flaws aside, what I did enjoy about the film was the designs of alien Lanterns Sinestro, Abin Sur, Kilowog, and Tomar; while Oa looked spectacular and the ring-powered constructs designs and effects were really cool to see animated in live-action. The action scenes themselves were mostly well-done, but there’s just this emptiness about the film as a whole that just makes the whole thing come off as being little more than a missed opportunity.
It’s a shame too, because out of all of DC’s characters that aren’t Batman, the Green Lantern mythos is not only the most interesting, but it features one of the most well-crafted characters and heroes in Hal Jordan. Like I said before though, most of this nerd-rage of mine is coming from the fact that I’m a diehard Green Lantern fan, and seeing a mega-budget adaptation of my beloved GL has always been a dream of mine to see. It’s just such a shame that the end result is such a mammoth disappointment.
But hey, it’s still better than any X-Men film since 2003, or “Superman Returns”, so I guess there’s that.
Tuesday, October 18, 2011
Wow. It’s really hard to believe that is my 100th blog. Where did the time go exactly? Fuck if I know.
So what will I be discussing for my 100th blog spectacular? Comic book bitching? Movie bitching? Comic book movie bitching? Hockey? Horror? Nope, none of that this time around. For my 100th blog, I will be discussing something very near and dear to me, I will be discussing my dick.
Yes folks…my dick.
We’ve been together a long time, often hand in hand, with one usually acting as the singular brain between the both of us. More often than not though, we’ve found ourselves in trouble and some relatively dire straits, usually because my dick acts like an asshole. So, in a retrospect of sorts, I’m going to sort through a list of things I solely blame my dick for getting me into, only in an effort to illustrate to you, the reader that has a dick of your own, when you shouldn’t let your dick act as your dictator.
Things not to let your dick tell you to do, or do with your dick:
Go door to door asking bored & unhappy housewives if they require hot beef injections
Attempt to conduct a symphony orchestra with your dick (though it is fun)
Showing up to a Comic-con cosplaying as a toilet with your dick made up to look like Mr. Hankey
Trying to work the Xbox Kinect by swinging it around…doesn’t work at all
Make shadow puppets with it by the campfire…parents don’t find it all that funny
Try to prove that “Puppetry of the Penis” is a sham by using rubber bands…it’s difficult
Banging the hot neighbor even though you can smell the Chlamydia a mile away
Banging the neighbor’s hot babysitter even though you can smell the “jailbait” charge a mile away
Banging your best friend’s girlfriend because she gave you a sympathy blowjob back in the day and she’s currently unhappy and you’d like to return the favor
Tell yourself that 20 bucks for a half & half is a good, safe deal
Tell yourself that you only watch re-runs of “Charmed” for the interesting story elements, not the fact that it’s an hour-long jerk-off fest for pre-teen boys
Literally try to put a hole in the wall with it because you’re impressed with its hardness…it never works
Write a blog discussing your dick at length (or in short)
Hell of a 100th blog huh? Hope you at least got a laugh or two out of it. See ya soon folks! My dick waves hello to you all (and goodbye to some others).
Thursday, October 6, 2011
Do you remember "The Ooze"? It was a surprisingly good Genesis game released pretty late in the life of the console, but it garnered a bit of a cult following due to the game's originality and punishing difficulty. You should check it out if you want a fun exercise in pulling your fucking hair out. Here's the uncensored review of the game I wrote for Sega-16:
THE OOZE (1995)
Published by Sega
Developed by Sega Technical Institute
Ah yes, Sega Technical Institute. At one time probably the best development team within Sega (along with Sonic Team naturally), Sega Technical Institute was responsible for awesome Genesis games like Kid Chameleon and Comix Zone, while varying members of the team also had their hands in games like Sonic Spinball and Dr. Robotnik’s Mean Bean Machine. They were also behind The Ooze, an inventive and surprisingly original action/puzzle game that was released in the waning days of the Genesis’ lifecycle.
The story of The Ooze goes something like this: Dr. Caine is a scientist that discovers his employers are going to release the toxic gases he himself created on the population, in an effort to get filthy rich since they hold the cure (i.e., they’re practically the American government). Upon being discovered, Caine is seemingly killed by said toxic waste, only to be reborn as a moving, functioning puddle of puke green slime (yes, you read that right). Now he’s on a mission to get revenge on his former employers, as well as try to find a way to bring himself back to his human form in the process. He’s not Swamp Thing, he’s THE OOZE THING MOTHERFUCKERS!
You control Caine as this sentient puddle of green slime and traverse some dangerous areas and solve some puzzles. You can attack enemies by either stretching a slimy limb to attack, or spit little slime pellets which decreases your size. The size of your Caine-puddle also depletes as you get hit or otherwise take damage, which will happen quite a bit on your journey. Yes folks, The Ooze is one challenging game to be sure. In all the years I’ve played this game off and on, I have only ever beaten it once, and I didn’t get the good ending either. And once again, yes folks, there is a good ending, and a bad ending to this game. To get the good ending you must collect all 50 strands of DNA sprinkled throughout the game’s stages if you have any hope of being returned to your normal self. I didn’t get that ending because I just didn’t pay enough attention to what all was going on around me. That’s the key to getting far in this game, you have to pay attention to everything going on around you, and if you don’t, you may as well just pop the cartridge out because you’re not going to get very far. Environmental hazards pop up aplenty, from falling off the edge of a ledge or getting sucked down a drain, you must constantly be aware of your surroundings, this game is no joke, and can be frustrating as fuck to boot.
Graphically speaking The Ooze looks good. A number of late in life Genesis games featured some great graphics that surprised many, ranging from Comix Zone, The Lost World, and more besides. The Ooze is one of these games as well, offering colorful characters and sharply defined environments throughout. The game also features some great music and sound effects as well, which was really a staple of the games that came out of Sega Technical Institute at the time. In fact, a lot of what The Ooze has to offer are staples of what made Sega Technical Institute such a beloved inner-division of Sega at the time. Games that featured quality graphics and even more quality gameplay that kept gamers coming back again and again. It was because of games like The Ooze and the aforementioned Comix Zone and other Sega Technical Institute gems that helped extend the life of the Genesis probably longer than it should have gone on for.
While The Ooze isn’t quite a classic of the Genesis/Mega Drive library, it is one of those not-so-well-known little gems that can be found if you look hard enough. The game is easily found enough on eBay and other places online to warrant checking it out for yourself, which you should wholeheartedly do. Keep in mind however that this is one challenging, and occasionally frustrating, game that really does deliver the goods in terms of what we all look for in classic 16-bit Genesis gaming. It’s a shame that Sega Technical Institute as we all knew it didn’t stick together for too long as the years after the release of The Ooze crept along (I for one would have loved a sequel), but this game alone is just a sample of the impact that they had not only on the Genesis, but on Sega’s legacy as a whole.
Tuesday, October 4, 2011
Ah yes, it’s that time of year again…it’s fucking Halloween time folks! And what does Halloween time mean exactly? Horror movies folks, and if you know me well at all, you know no one loves this time of year and everything included with it more than me. One thing I don’t necessarily like about horror flicks in general however, is that we have horror movies remakes. Just closing my eyes and letting my mind drift, I see flickers of the ridiculously shitty remakes of classic (and even not so classic) horror remakes to have been unleashed upon us in the past decade or so. “The Wickerman” (“NOT THE BEES!!!”), “The Fog”, “A Nightmare on Elm Street”, “Texas Chainsaw Massacre”, Rob Zombie’s abortion that was “Halloween 2”, and so on and so forth. However, every now and then, we get a horror remake that isn’t only surprisingly good, but in some cases even outdoes the original it was based upon. So I’ve listed my top five of the best horror movie remakes to have seen the light of day. You may not agree necessarily, but regardless, these are the best horror remakes available that you could ever hope to see. And here…we…go!
THE THING (1982)
Director: John Carpenter
Starring: Kurt Russell, Keith David, Wilford Brimley
Remade from the classic “The Thing From Another World” and owing more to the story that that film was based upon (“Who Goes There”), John Carpenter’s “The Thing” featured masterful suspense, genuine shocks, and legendary effects makeup that not only still holds up today, but helped revolutionize the makeup special effects world in the process. A group of researchers in Antarctica comes across a crash-landed alien that can assimilate and duplicate other life forms it comes into contact with, resulting in a gore-fest of suspense and the crew playing an increasingly desperate game of cat and mouse trying to figure out who’s human and who isn’t. Everything about “The Thing” is nearly pitch perfect, from the superb acting to the grim and nihilistic conclusion, this remains one of my all time favorite films of any genre, and in my opinion Carpenter’s best film ever. There’s an upcoming remake of this remake (you read that right) that supposedly serves as a prequel, and features a young cast with CGI effects aplenty. I can already guarantee how THAT flick will turn out. No matter what though, you must see “The Thing”, it’s a horror classic.
THE FLY (1986)
Director: David Cronenberg
Starring: Jeff Goldblum, Geena Davis, John Getz
Remade from the Vincent Price classic, David Cronenberg’s “The Fly” is a gory tale of science gone mad. Jeff Goldblum stars as a brilliant scientist that accidentally crosses his genes with that of a fly during a teleportation experiment, and what results is a nightmarish examination of “The Metamorphosis”, with hefty amounts of blood and guts tossed in for good measure. At the heart of the film however is a surprisingly deep and even more surprisingly emotional examination of human nature and subtle metaphors for disease and the transformation one goes through during a relationship; topics that you very rarely see taken on in any remake, 99% of which are done as quick cash-ins. A box-office hit and Oscar winner for makeup special effects, “The Fly” spawned a relatively lame sequel a few years later, but apparently David Cronenberg himself has scripted a purposed sequel to this film that he claims will probably never see the light of day. If said sequel would even only be half as good as this film, it would be a crime were it to never be completed.
NIGHT OF THE LIVING DEAD (1990)
Director: Tom Savini
Starring: Tony Todd, Patricia Tallman, Tom Towles
George Romero produced this remake to his legendary shocker, which was directed by legendary makeup effects guru Tom Savini, and unlike most remakes that change things around in the script for the sake of changing things around, this remake doesn’t come off as being the worse for it. This take on “Night of the Living Dead” transforms Barbara from a terrified, screaming shell of a woman into a tough, hard-nosed survivor as she and a group of others board themselves up in an old farmhouse as ravenous zombies surround them. For what it lacks in gore, the “Night of the Living Dead” remake offers some great acting and inventive takes on the classic shocking scenes of the original. Some fans actually consider this remake better than the original, and while I myself am not in that camp, I can see why they may feel that way. You’ll rarely find a remake as good as this one.
LET ME IN (2010)
Director: Matt Reeves
Starring: Kodi Smit-McPhee, Chloe Moretz, Richard Jenkins
An Americanized remake of the modern classic “Let the Right One In”; “Let Me In” is an unexpected treat. When news of the remake first broke, I had a shit-fit and was adamant in the fact that it would be pure and absolute shit and never measure up to the original. Well, I was completely wrong in every regard. “Let Me In” tells the story of a bullied, neglected young boy that learns the girl that just moved in is actually a vampire, and the two develop a bond as everything around them starts to go completely to shit. While “Let Me In” doesn’t quite have the same amount of heart and soul as the beloved original film, it still manages to stand on its own and pay wonderful homage to the original while keeping its spirit and message intact.
THE BLOB (1988)
Director: Chuck Russell
Starring: Kevin Dillon, Shawnee Smith, Jeffrey DeMunn
There are plenty of people that didn’t like this film for whatever reasons, but I personally love this remake of “The Blob”. Dated as hell but loaded with some eye-popping effects and deliberately tongue-in-cheek moments, I even prefer this remake over the Steve McQueen-starring classic original in some regards. Mostly because it’s just a fun, over-the-top gorefest that takes no prisoners and makes no apologies for what it is, and that’s the kind of filmmaking you’ve just got to appreciate. Plus, it has Kevin Dillon with a mullet, and that chick from all the “Saw” flicks as a cheerleader; what’s not to love?
“And Soon the Darkness”
“Dawn of the Dead”
“Don’t Be Afraid of the Dark”
“The Hills Have Eyes”
“Invasion of the Body Snatchers” (1978)
“Piranha 3-D” (fuck you I dug it)