I’ve been re-watching the original Star Wars trilogy lately (along with the prequels which are still pretty damn hard to sit through) and been thinking a lot about the latest trilogy’s aggressive backlash since ‘The Last Jedi’. It’s clearly evident there’s something that the originals had that these new movies are missing the boat on. Those first three films had a serious feeling of camaraderie along with strong totally relatable bonds between it’s diverse cast of characters, something that the latest movies seem to be struggling quite a bit with. I like the new cast but they really haven’t been given the screen time they deserve to fully develop into the tight knit unit that the original crew became so iconic as.
Let’s face it, the gang in the original had a certain chemistry among them that for some odd reason has been incredibly hard for ‘Disney’ Star Wars to replicate. In the late 70’s & 80s films were paced quite a bit differently as well and characters were given more actual story & screen time to be fleshed out, making their friendships all the more believable. We definitely got some tender moments in The Force Awakens between Finn, Rey, Poe, Leia & Han but it felt like ‘The Last Jedi’ just wasn’t able capture much real emotion amongst it’s large cast. Finn & Rose felt pretty forced, Rey and Luke lacked any chemistry, while Holdo and Leia really weren’t given the time together for their relationship to mean much of anything to the audience. Most of the main three new characters barely spent much time onscreen together at all. Think for a second about the way Luke, Han, Leia, Chewy, C3PO & R2 all felt together on an adventure onscreen, their friendships were a wonder to behold. They were all like family, I often compare them to the main characters in ‘The Wizard of Oz’. You really feel something genuine for them all that really warms the heart.
Well now we’ve got one LAST movie left of the “Skywalker saga”, Episode 9 has got a lot riding on it’s back since the huge division amongst rabid Star Wars fans. It’s got to unite all fans again and there’s really an easy way to do exactly that, however it seems for some reason Disney just can’t wrap their heads around exactly what will please both new & old fans alike. To me it’s obvious, first off avoid making this last installment a copy of ‘Return of the Jedi’. Devise a bit more of an original story, because as much as Rian Johnson thinks his movie was divisive because it was “so different than any of the previous movies” in actuality it really did borrow a ton of it’s “unique” plot points from Empire & Return of the Jedi. Secondly it’s clear, Star Wars fans STILL love the old characters-I keep hearing everyone in the movie industry saying-it’s not the old characters story anymore, it’s about the new. My question is, why can’t the story truly be about both the old and the new? Continue reading
Wow! So yesterday Mike Mignola made a stunning announcement that Hellboy will be returning to the big screen! BUT and there’s a big BUT here, without Ron Perlman & Guillermo del Toro’s involvement. This is a bit shocking to many as we’ve been waiting the third and final installment that’s been teased for years. I wish they’d have done it and I feel a bit bad for Ron Perlman as he gave the role his all and has been fighting for the fans for so long to complete the trilogy. With that being said, David Harbour, the cop from ‘Stranger Things’ will be stepping into the role of the big devil himself and he seems like an amazing choice for the role. I can already easily picture him as Hellboy just on his looks alone and the guy is a decent actor as well. So I think they’re off to a great start in terms of casting. I’m hoping that they’ll create Hellboy in the same way they did with Ron Perlman. His and the rest of the BPRD’s make up was incredible in del Toro’s movies and I’m hoping that they’re not going to simply CG Hellboy and the gang. One thing Guillermo did extremely well was the creation of incredible monsters using mainly practical fx and incorporating CGI only when truly necessary.
Also announced was director Neil Marshall, who I was immediately thrilled about, for the simple fact that he’s made easily two of the best horror movies of the last twenty years, Dog Soldiers & The Descent. Both of these movies are mind blowing-ly awesome and they’re 100% rock solid proof that this director just might bring us the best Hellboy movie possible. Heck, I go as far to put ‘Dog Soldiers’ right up there with ‘An American Werewolf in London’ and ‘The Howling’. As excited as I am at the possibility here I realized that ‘The Descent’ was released all the way back in 2005 and it got me thinking just what the hell has Neil Marshall really been up to the last twelve years? Lets find out as it may give us a better idea of exactly what we’re in store for with this new Hellboy flick.
After ‘The Descent’ Marshall went on to direct the lackluster ‘Mad Max’ influenced movie ‘Doomsday’ in 2008. The movie was a bit of a box office bomb and to me didn’t bring anything new or exciting to the table honestly in the post apocalyptic adventure genre. I guess I give him an ‘A’ for effort for giving it an honest shot but the movie was just too bland to make any real waves and has been largely forgotten for the most part.
After that he did ‘Centurion’ in 2010, with Michael Fassbender starring. It was a an ok attempt at a historical hack and slash war movie about the disappearance of the Roman empire’s ninth legion. This was also a bit of a bomb at the box office and largely went under the radar of movie goers. Once again this movie didn’t bring anything to the table that hadn’t really already been done before. One thing though I’ll say are that his movies look great and even Doomsday visually was at least effective in that area. Still ‘Centurion’ is one time viewing and it doesn’t have much to differentiate it from anything else that was being cranked out in the genre at the time.
After that Marshall disappeared from the movie scene directing 2 excellent episodes of ‘Game of Thrones’ as well as episodes of ‘Black Sails’, ‘Constantine’, ‘Hannibal’, ‘Timeless’ & ‘Westworld’. In 2015 he was one of the directors in the horror anthology movie ‘Tales of Halloween’ and directed the excellent installment “Bad Seed” about the killer GMO pumpkin! Loved it…
So what we’ve got here for Marshall is a big return to the silver screen on a big budget flick. I don’t have any reason to believe that he’s going to fuck it up, in fact with a great script which I’m certain Mignola will be part of and the supposed “R” rating the movie’s rumored to get we just might see a more true to the comic version of the character. I think it’ll be much darker, bloody and quite possibly a much bigger hit this time around. I’ve always thought cinematic Hellboy was ahead of it’s time and that the strange Mignola-verse would fare far better in today’s landscape than that of 2008 to movie goers. Hellboy & The BPRD are easily my favorites of the current comic book franchises out there, so this next movie means a lot to me.
If they lift the amazing feel of the del Toro movies and add a bit darker tone (don’t lose all the comedy though) we’ll be in for one helluva Hellboy flick. I’m also hoping that the movie might make a role for Ron Perlman, Doug Jones & Selma Blair (perhaps as villains?) because we all know how badly they wanted a third film. How cool would Ron & Doug be starring as some crazy creatures? Let’s let Neil Marshall return to his true roots and give the Hellboy movies the lethal does of horror they need today. The guy is super talented and his two incredible horror movies he made are proof that Marshall is exactly where he needs to be. I’m hoping this will begin many more Mignola-verse based movies or a BPRD tv series dammit!! So don’t fret I think Hellboy’s indeed in good hands…
Ok, so my title above is a bit misleading because as of right now there’s not currently rumors about Jonathan Ke Quan returning to the role of “Short Round” for the upcoming Indiana Jones Part 5. BUT let’s start that rumor here because maybe it will catch fire on the web and actually happen!
So this whole idea really began the other evening when I saw the amazing 1991 movie ‘Breathing Fire’ starring Ke Quan as a teenage ass kicking kung fu machine. If you haven’t seen this movie and love his roles in Indiana Jones and Goonies you best check this one out asap. Seriously. Movies rarely reach level of pure fun and some great over the top kung fu! He even faces off against the legendary Bolo Yueng and it’s just jam packed with amazingly awesome & hilarious retro action cheeze. Seek this one out asap. The full movie can be found on Youtube.com!
However I digress, Ke Quan’s acting career ended in 2002 with the Hong Kong sci fi feature film “Second Time Around” so he’s not exactly been focused on acting lately. As you can tell from the previous Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull Speilberg is heavily focused on nostalgia from the previous films as one of the key moments is the return of Marion Ravenwood. So in this next installment how amazing would it be to have Indy once again team up with his buddy Short Round on another adventure?
During filming ‘Temple Of Doom’, Quan studied Tae Kwon Do under film choreographer Phillip Tan. Something about the discipline of martial arts really appealed to him, so he began rigorously studying many different techniques. Once his acting career had become more quiet, Quan became an assistant fight choreographer to Hong Kong legend Corey Yeun on movies like ‘X-Men’ and Jet Li vehicle ‘The One’. Ke Quan now is 45 years old, has kept himself in great shape and could likely bring his seasoned martial arts exploits into the next Indy flick with pure adoration from longtime fans. He’s even been asked more recently from fans about appearing in part five answering with an enthusiastic “I don’t know!”. From what I understand he’s also down for a trip down nostalgia lane for the forever talked about Goonies sequel. So this here is all a real possibility considering Indiana Jones part 5 is indeed happening for sure.
I’ve got high hopes for the next Indy movie, I enjoyed the last one but I’ll agree it’s far from perfect and nowhere near as classic as the first three. Still this next movie is likely Harrison Ford’s last as the character so Speilberg will get one last shot to right the wrongs of the last movie. Ditch the ridiculous CG you promised you weren’t going to use and give us something that truly feels like a classic Indy movie and please leave Shia Labeouf’s Mutt Willaims at home. Let’s feel the nostalgia and let’s see Jones & Short Round team up once again, I know that fans would flip their shit if this was worked into the movie and it’d make sense that a fully able, older Short Round could help Indiana Jones kick some butt this time as our aging main character likely needs all the help he can get this time around. What do you think? Would you like to see Johnny Ke Quan return? If so share this post and let’s make it happen!
Alright so there are a bout a billion reviews up online everywhere about the Amazing Spider-man 2, so I’m not going to spend a whole lot of energy here on this one. The movie really doesn’t need another review or any more hype at this point, but what the hell it’s my blog and I shelled out a Fandango gift card on it! Ok, so first let me state that my expectations weren’t very high for this one as I wasn’t a real big fan of the first flick. As I always do though, I try my best to go into a movie with an open mind. Besides this is Spidey we’re talking here, a guy I’ve loved dearly since being a lil’ whipper snapper!
I’m thinking now, that maybe if I’d seen this one as a little kid maybe my mind would have been blown. The Amazing Spider-man 2 is a huge ass movie. Two hundred million dollar budget. It’s close to two and a half hours long. It’s loud, flashy and jam packed with intertwining story lines. That’s my first problem with it, there’s too much going on. There’s too many subplots. The movie goes on a few too many tangents and then decides to go on a few more after that. Sony is clearly trying set up more movies (ala The Avengers syndrome) from this one and honestly it didn’t have a smooth flow to what should have been a nice tight knit compelling story.
Which leads me to my second problem, the writing. Spider-man 2 suffers from some seriously terd-tastic writing. Everything from Peter Parker’s stale on again off again relationship, to Paul Giamatti’s corny ass Rhino, to the awful Jamie Foxx Electro to Harry Osborn’s overnight meltdown. They’ve really managed to create some paper thin excuses for people to turn into supervillains these days. Foxx did his best with what he was given, but his dialogue was painful to watch and his reasoning for going evil was just plain uninspired. There was nothing believable about his character, I felt absolutely nothing for him nor cared of his motivations. His entire existence in the movie was rather idiotic to say the least.
Then we have The new Green Goblin, played by Dane Dehaan. He did quite a fine job in the role and clearly he’s got the acting chops. However his character’s motivations were also pretty flimsy. His all too quick transformation from good guy into an evil raving lunatic was a bit ridiculous. The prison scene where he recruits Electro to help him break into Oscorp was one of the worst team up moments I’ve ever seen on screen or in the comics. “You need ME? You need ME?!” Also I might note that once again I wasn’t a fan of the Goblin’s look onscreen. Sorry I just can’t get behind that robotic body armor schtick. It just well…sucks!
Lastly the action scenes, which there actually really weren’t that many of, were decently executed, but really took me out of the movie. It’s like watching a live action movie suddenly turn into Toy Story 2. The CGI in this flick was great, if the whole movie had been done that way (which they maybe should consider doing) and the last final Electro battle looked straight out of an Xbox game with not a real human actor in sight for at least over five minutes. No thank you. If I wanna watch a video game I’ll go play one at home.
On a good note I have grown to kinda like Garfield as Spidey. He’s a good actor and really did put his heart and soul into what he was given to work with. He’s a more convincing Spider-man, who’s really grown into the part. If someone could get a good script for a Spider-man film it’d be golden with him as Peter Parker. However what we get once again is an even more bloated, glittery, mindless mess of a summer blockbuster. That’s not to say I hated it, but I wouldn’t want to see it again. I like seeing images of Spider-man on a screen in front of me, but at best that’s about as far as this movie appeals to me. Oh yeah and what the fuck was that lame ass mid credit X-men advertisement?! The movie was called “The Amazing Spider-man 2” not “X-men: Days of Future Past” last time I checked….that was a low blow. Don’t do that again. Can we just hurry up on that Avengers sequel already?!!
This is pretty crazy news, that by now everyone knows, but really Harrison Ford joining the Expendables 3 is quite a surprise! This clearly is going to add a different dimension to the movie and give it some serious star power. It certainly seems as if Sly is going for it again with his casting but what does this mean for Ford’s character? Is he a villain? Part of the team? I’m hoping that injecting him into the movie will perhaps bring on a more “adventurous” vibe to the movie, maybe having him play slightly off his Indiana Jones role and taking the team to some truly amazing remote places! How cool would it be if they had to hire him as a guide for the team in search of some strange artifact of some sort.
Perhaps his involvement means what Stallone mentioned, that the third film might shift genres? I for one hope Ford brings the team into new territory and that the movie does shift into maybe a more sci-fi element, or even better as was predicted, the movie may be based on the discarded “Rambo 5” script “The Savage Hunt”. The ideas for that was that Sly and his team have to hunt down a genetically modified mutant super soldier gone psycho. Now I’d pay to see that! Let’s hope this is the case and that Ford is their guide into the jungles where he or rather it is hiding! Come on Stallone make it happen!!!