Bleh with Barry

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Archive for the ‘Comics’ Category

If I Formed My League of Extraordinary Gentlemen

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So, a friend just posted on my facebook wall asking me if I made my own League of Extraordinary Gentlemen using only characters from books (not the comics or movies). Immediately, I asked the question “Can I use villains and they play well with others?” because this is important in forming my group. This simple face can change the usefulness of some characters drastically. So, I suppose I will try to make my group considering that the villains have to work with the heroes for some reason or other…so with that in mind, here I go.

* Sherlock Holmes– With his powerful deductive mind, Holmes would make a good addition to any group’s intelligence

By Sidney Paget(1860-1908) [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

factor. He would be able to break down analytical problems and move through them with a speed that others might not have.  He would also be good in a pinch when in a situation where he was fighting because he can break down the most effective route for dealing with people (no, I’m not thinking about the movie here…even though, he does it to an almost preternatural degree).

* Frankenstein’s Monster– I would be making this choice for two reasons. First, the monster would begin to round out the muscle of the group. He is preternaturally strong, agile, and durable, which would make him a good asset. Second, he has a knack for learning and appears to be pretty intelligent himself. So, he could serve a two-fold  position as both the brawn and, potentially, the brains.

* Merlin– Scary powerful sorcerer…need I say more. He can do a lot and help in a tight situation in many ways. Brains and power…

* Muldumarec– A shape-shifting knight from the medieval lai of “Yonec.” His ability to morph into other things would make him the perfect person to infiltration and espionage. He would probably be okay in a fight because of his abilities and his skills as a knight…I’m also talking about him without being killed by his lover’s jealous husband…

By Edward Reginald Frampton (1872-1923) (Démons et Merveilles (E.Brasey)) [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

* Titania– Another magic user and fae to boot, she would round out the group. Her femininity would help balance out the group of men and would allow her to seduce the opposing forces. Her magical abilities would also be handy in tight situations because she is the queen of the fae. Moreover, she can be quite frightening depending upon the folk tales / literature that she appears in. Her near immortality and invulnerability would also be handy in a lot of situations…

* Pandora– No, I’m not talking about the figure from Greek myth that unleashed pestilence upon the world. Rather, I am referring to the 2000 year old vampire from Anne Rice’s vampire chronicles (this is my guilty pleasure add). Pandora is sexy, provocative, intelligent, and powerful (she waxes philosophical but also rips out a man’s heart to drain it). With her telepathy, she could be the communicator of the group talking to the others mentally. Her pyrokinesis and telekinesis would also make her deadly from afar, and her other vampiric abilities such as immortality, super strength and speed, and near invulnerability would make her quite a force to be reckoned with… she would also play well with the other members of the group (unlike some of Anne Rice’s other characters).

So, there you go…I think that this would be a fairly balanced team of hard-core literary characters. I’ve tried to balance brains and brawn; moreover, I’ve also tried to create a middle ground of characters that can go either way. Overall, I think they would make an interesting group with a diverse array of powers.

Sci-Fi / Fantasy Movies of the Summer that I’ve Watched: Good, Bad or Mediocre

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So, it’s been a while since I have blogged…I’ve been a little tied up with things including watching the movies :). Anyway, here’s my opinion of the movies that I’ve watched over the course of this summer in only a few words or more…yeah…

Thor- 7/10: I thought that it was well done and fun. Good acting, solid script, interesting comic book characters, and mythology (even though it was a little skewed).

X-Men First Class- 8.5/10: Good look at the X-Men’s leaders before the main conflict of the first two films. James McAvoy, Michael Fassbender, and Keving Bacon were amazing. Good story.

Green Lantern- 5.5/10: I enjoy the Green Lantern storyline…however, it could have done with some updating…the script sounded like it might have been written in the 70’s…I enjoy some of the casting choices…but yeah…also, the pacing of the film was off (partially because it felt like it was just a setup for the next film).

Transformers: The Dark Side of the Moon- 6.5/10: I’m not a huge fan of Michael Bay…with that said, the movie was better than the second one (Giant angel robots…all I”m saying…), but this movie was fun and action-tastic, even though it could have been shortened by 30 minutes (it was 2 and a half hours…). Moreover, I think that the movie should be about the giant robots, but they tried to make it about the human drama…I don’t have to see the humans triumph, not what I came for…

Harry Potter 7 Part 2- 6/10: It was a solid movie…there were just sooooo many things that I would have done differently…yeah…and I feel that it was over-hyped for the end result of the film.

Captain America The First Avenger- 7/10: Enjoyable ride…however, we know that Chris Evans really can’t act because most of the scenes he was truly in were action-tastic (maybe I should coin a word…I’ve used it twice already)…he was serviceable as Steve Rogers…I did like Tommy Lee Jones and Hugo Weaving (best casting choices of the movie). I’m excited to see the Avengers movie in 2012…

So yeah, there’s my recap…I might expand upon them at some point. So, there you go. 🙂

X-Men First Class: What I Thought (Possible Spoilers for Some People)

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So, as most X-Men fans out there,  I went to a midnight showing of the new movie and now want to share with you what I thought. To start, I thought that the movie was pretty fantastic overall. I enjoyed the plot of the movie and thought that for the most part the acting was pretty wonderful too. I thought that it brought back the heart of the first two movies and blended in perfectly with what they set up to be the conflict of the mutants in the world that they lived in. I think that a lot of this has to be due with Bryan Singer being brought back on board as a writer and story creator. Honestly, I believe that he is the reason the first two films were as true to the comics as they were and feel that he had a real sense of what the true feelings of the story was.

Positives:

James McAvoy and Michael Fassbender are amazing and fill the shoes that Patrick Stewart and Ian McKellan left for them. They play the younger version of Charles Xavier and Erik Lensherr in such a way that make them a lot more down to earth and human than the figures that we see as Professor X and Magneto. They flesh out the characters in a way that their older counterparts could because they allow us to see the men before the leaders.

 

The villains were a good choice. Bringing the Hellfire Club into an X-Men movie is no easy task especially since they are quite a scary bunch of villains. However, I believe that Kevin Bacon does a good job of breathing life into Sebastian Shaw the Black King of the Club. He is a formidable foe and even with him being a bit overpowered (i.e. manipulating energy to be put back out in the form of explosive energy…which is not his original powers). He was especially great with all the different languages and other things that were required of him.

The integration of the movie into actual historical events makes me quite happy. I like how they spun the Cuban missile crisis to make it a moment for the X-Men / Brotherhood to start to develop as groups and individuals. I like how they used this as a point of origin for the groups and for the rivalry that springs up between the friends of Xavier and Magneto.

 

The music was fantastic as well. Thanks to Henry Jackman. The score punctuated the movie quite well and made it more enjoyable.

Weak Points

January Jones as Emma Frost left something to be desired for me. Emma is supposed to be one bad-ass, devil-may-care uber bitch. However, Jones comes off as a very flat portrayal of this most of the time. Now, I’m not blaming this entirely upon her. Matter-of-factly, she does have a few moments when she pulls of the character quite well. For instance, when she is in the CIA interrogation room and cuts a hole in the glass with her diamond finger, she gave me a bit of the chills that the real Emma Frost. There were also a few other of the more minor characters that I feel like could have given more.

I could have used the real original group of X-Men. I liked most of the characters that they used for the movie. However, I wanted there to be at least Jean and Scott…those are the real heart of the team, and I feel that they should have been there…other than that the characters were fine. (Except for the Wolverine cameo…I could have really done without that…that’s all I’m saying).

No extra scene at the end. I’m disappointed in Marvel for having them in every other movie but not in this one. Really Marvel? That was what I thought when I saw this…or didn’t see it rather.

Parting Thoughts:

Overall, I think that the movie works well especially with the first and second X-Men movies (I complete discount the 3 or any of the Wolverine Origin movies). I think that they chose a good place to fit them into the real world. I think that they chose a good cast to portray the characters. And they did the ideals that the X-Men stood for justice. I enjoyed it very thoroughly (as one can tell from me seeing it twice on the opening day) and hope that it might mean something for the X-Men franchise in the future.

Marvel Comic Movies of the Summer: X-Men First Class

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So, with the huge success of Thor (I totally loved it…I recommend seeing it if you haven’t), I am beginning to wonder what will happen with the new X-Men movie that will be coming to theaters next month (June 3 to be exact). Honestly, I’m remaining hopeful for the movie because it has two really good actors play Xavier (James McAvoy) and Magneto (Michael Fassbender) and others that look equally promising. However, I am also apprehensive about what story arch they may be following in order to produce the movie.

My biggest reason for my apprehensions lies in the world that the filmmakers have created if the other four films are taken into account… Honestly, I’m hoping that this movie marks the reboot of the X-Men movie franchise. If not, I am irritated by the manipulation of character ages that seems to exist within the film. For example, Mystique is way older in the grand scheme of all the comics…and it appears that she would be in the movies…However, my biggest example of this would be Emma Frost. In X-Men Origins: Wolverine, she is a teenager; yet, in this movie she is a thirty something year-old who is a full-fledged member of the Hellfire Club…Yeah….I don’t like when things like this happen. Moreover, I am already skeptical about the “First Class” idea because this isn’t the first class (this group includes Jean Grey, Scott Summers, Angel, Iceman, and Beast).

So, yeah, I’m anxiously awaiting the release and keeping up with new trailers and such. My biggest hope is that the movie is over two hours long…to me, this is an indicator of whether or not I should be hyped before I go into the theater (I will regardless….the X-Men is my comic book baby…). If it is over two hours, I can expect something at least because let’s face it a comic that has been around for 40+ years will not be adequately represented in less than two hours….So, I hope that you all are as excited / apprehensive as I am…Here’s hoping for the best. I also hope you enjoy the teaser trailers looking at a few of the mutants in the film.

X-Men: The First Class…A Good Thing or Not?

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As all of my readers out there know, I am a huge X-Men fan. As some of you may know as well, the new movie X-Men: First Class is coming out June 3, and we as the viewing audience just got our true first peek at what the movie is going to be like. Honestly, I am excited about this new edition to the X-Men movies…however, I also have some other questions that surround the movie and the overall placement of it in terms of the others.

Honestly, I guess the biggest question that I have about the movie is this: will it fit into the canon that the Bryan Singer and, sadly, Brett Radner films have created or will it start a new timeline for the X-Men entirely. I know that it is being billed as a prequel; yet, some of the stuff that they appear to be doing does not fit in with the continuity of the movies or of the comic series entirely. First and foremost, Jean Grey is Charles Xavier’s first student. In this film, I have not seen or heard of any reference to Jean, which kinda makes me sad because she is an interesting character. Secondly, if we take the Wolverine Origins movie into the continuity ( I have serious doubts about whether it  should be or not since it is just a mess of characters and action…much like the third movie), characters like Emma Frost and Havok (as juxtaposed to Cyclops who actually appears in the Wolverine movie) are significantly younger within this framework compared to the older Professor X (he arrives at the end of the movie). However, in the new movie, Emma Frost is the more familiar face that we reading the comics are accustomed to while Havok is still a young man. Also, Mystique, who appears in the later movies, is young in this one…yet, we all know that she does not age like normal people or mutants and is as old or older than Wolverine.

 

Finally, I’m curious as to which origin story they are actually using…there are a couple (all of which involve practically the same mutant team). Still, knowing which one they were using would make me feel a little better about what may or may not be the main plot of the movie. So, yeah….I have high hopes for this movie. They have actors that are good actors in all the right parts. They have a director who knows comic movies (Matthew Vaughn from Kick Ass). The story was also conceived by Bryan Singer (someone who knows the X-Men). Does it mark a new beginning for the X-Men franchise? Or is it truly a prequel? I will keep my eyes and ears out for more info on the movie as time goes on.

Year of the Geek: Comic Book Movies of 2011

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I saw somewhere on the internet the other day (maybe it was my homepage…I’m not completely sure which is one of the pitfalls of reading news and such on the internet the majority of the time…but any way) that a lot of people are terming this year the year of the geek due to the excessive number of comic book movies coming out in the theaters this year. Honestly, I am excited about this year…does that mean I am a geek myself. I believe so because I am looking forward to watching several of the movies that will be coming out over the course of the year, and here are the few that I’m most interested in (and alright, I am a Marvel snob to some degree…so forgive me if a lot of the DC or Darkhorse stuff is missing from my assessment).

Thor–Directed by Kenneth Branagh and starring Chris Hemsworth, Anthony Hopkins and Natalie Portman. This movie is promising to be one of the must see movies of the summer months. Following the storyline of one of the most prominent Marvel characters (which all of them are prominent in their own right), this movie is bringing us all one step closer to the promised Avengers movie that will be in theaters in 2012. What I am most interested in in this movie is how they are going to meld the scientific and the magical worlds that Marvel are known for. I know that in the movie trailer they are saying that science and magic are practically the same thing just us dumb humans using another name for something mystical. Yet, I’m still intrigued to see how far they go with this concept.

X-Men: First Class–As most of you know who read my blog on a regular basis, X-Men are the comic book heroes that are near and dear to my heart, so it probably doesn’t surprise you that I am anxious about this upcoming movie.  It does have a few good things going for it though. First, Matthew Vaughn is directing the movie and overall his other movies (Kick Ass, Stardust, and Layer Cake…all good movies). Then, you have Bryan Singer (the man who co-wrote and directed for the first two good X-Men movies) responsible for the story. Finally, you have several actors that are pretty good in the roles of some of our memorable characters (James McAvoy is Professor X, Kevin Bacon is Sebastian Shaw, and many more). I’m still holding my breath on the this one because we all know the debacle of the third movie. However, I’m trying to remain hopeful that this movie might help redeem the series from X3 and the Wolverine movie. Also, another side note, Wolverine will not be in this one unless it is a small cameo (Hooray! I don’t like him that much anyway).

Green Lantern–Okay, so, this is one of the few (if only) DC comic movie adaptation that appears here. I’m interested in this one because let’s face it Green Lantern is a pretty cool super hero. His powers are limited by the strength of his mind…so, yeah, he seems like he would be any intellectual’s go to super hero. Being played by Ryan Reynolds, I think this movie has potential if it is done right because like any other super hero movie it also has the potential to be sooooooo bad too.

Captain America: The First Avenger–Okay, so, I’m not a huge fan of Capt. However, I’m pretty excited about this movie because its release will be the last piece of the puzzle for the afore-mentioned Avengers movie. Chris Evans will be an okay Capt. (I’m not completely thrilled by his casting choice partially because he has already been a character in the Marvel-verse of movies), but I am really excited to see Hugo Weaving as the Red Skull. I think that he is going to be amazing at that. Why? Because he plays evil and off-beat characters well (look at Mr. Smith in the Matrix, V in V for Vendetta, etc)…I’m just excited overall.

So, these are just a sampling of the top things that I”m looking forward to. I’m also excited about Harry Potter and other things of that nature (not excited about Twilight). Looking forward to seeing Paul Bettany in Priest. Yet, I’m also not excited to see some others (like the Green Hornet for instance…I find Seth Rogen insufferable). However, there will be more to come of these other things in following days. Till then, adieu.

X3: The Last Stand

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Today, I was rewatching the third movie in the X-Men Trilogy and had some of the same thoughts that I had originally when watching it. To put it into perspective for you, at the end of the movie on opening night, I stood up when the credits began and said “What the hell!” (There may have been more choice words…I’m not entirely sure), and I ranted like this for a few moments until the surprise tag at the end of the credits came on…I was silent for a little while to watch…then, the ranting began again. Why you might ask was I so distraught? It was and is because the X-Men are my favorite superheroes. I have like them ever since I was a child because they are imperfect and varied. So, why did the movie rub me the wrong way? It’s because of several things.

1) The storyline was rushed and manipulated to suit weird intentions. I didn’t like their take on the Phoenix saga. It was okay, but honestly, they can’t undertake such a huge story arc in one movie. It is a story that stretches across many, many issues and decades of comic books…and they dealt with it in an hour and a half movie…yeah…

 

2) Magneto would have died trying to save Charles Xavier. In the comics, they are good friends even though they do have their different view points of the mutant crisis. Magneto would not have stood idly by while the Phoenix tore him apart. He would have been killed because he tried to save Charles…it’s just one of those things.

3) Halle Berry is not Storm. While several of the people cast were wonderful, she doesn’t act like Storm should act. With the power of the weather at her finger tips, she should not get too angry because storms will happen; however, she is angry and emotional all the time…nothing happens…it’s one of those things that is odd to me.

4) Brett Radner didn’t seem to understand the world like Bryan Singer did. The first two movies were good. They seemed to use the characters well and give the storylines that were appropriate for a movie format. While I know that he didn’t write the script for the movie, I know that his direction played up Halle Berry’s angst and some other equally annoying aspects of the movie…and let’s face it, his movies are really that great…(think Rush Hour 3)..

Some honorable mentions for the good qualities of the movie, I thought that Jean Grey’s costuming choices were nice. I liked that they matched her hair to her costume color…I also appreciate John Powell’s musical score. It is a bright spot in the dimness of the movie. “The Dark Phoenix Tragedy” is one of the best songs in the movie. However, these bright spots are not able to redeem the movie…they just make it suck a little less.

Written by uncannynerdyguy

September 12, 2010 at 8:55 pm