Tuesday, May 27, 2008


Probably one of the best online game reviewers around. If he did film - he'd be banned from any and all screenings...

Here's a few of his reviews. Not only are they scathingly funny - I think they're fairly well written...




And a MAILBAG SHOWDOWN for good measure

Monday, May 26, 2008

Indiana Jones Thoughts

Like many of the movie going public between the ages of 20 & 40, I have a special place in my nostalgia department for the Indiana Jones Trilogy. It doesn't reach Star Wars levels, or even Back to The Future magnitude, but I've always thought it was one of the best adventure series in memory. Though, it should be said that I probably fall in line with most people who found the second and third installments diminish the strength and name of the first, but still they held up within their own genre world.

So when it comes to Crystal Skull, the fourth feature some 20 years after the fact, it's hard not to enter the movie with some trepidation among the enthousiasm. Steven Speilberg said that the biggest inspiration to do the fourth was "to get the original family back together'. And that's what it feels like, really, it feels like the gangs all there.

And aged.

Kingdom of the Crystal Skull never approaches Phantom Menace type of cut down, but it's a shockingly poor effort that seems ill planned and even apathetically executed. There's a couple of good quips from the hero sprung about, but they don't have the same bite and while the chemistry seems to be there with the leads the same notion holds true.

I can't really tell if it's the script that deserves the blame, or if it's the creative higher-ups that should. Jones films have always had a massive gorge of suspended disbelief needed to accept the high production values of essentially b-movie material. But they always delivered within the universe they created. This one doesn't, not even close. I don't want to spoil anything, so I won't really delve into the finale, but it's akin to picking up the ball and running it to the endzone...and continuing until you find a whole new stadium, that houses an ice rink.

There's some asinine decisions made that could have been so easily corrected without even falling into the expository realm of clunky dialog and display. Why not teach the kid to use a whip before he starts swinging with monkeys? That would have bridge the generational gap and reinforced the obvious goal of setting up Shia Lebouf as the successor to the series. And the kid is never the problem either, he equips himself well and does everything that's needed. Harrison as well, plays with his side-kick more than admirably and you can tell they got on just fine. But it's all in the way the story unfolds.

Indy always found himself in circumstances of life and death, discovering ways to court himself out of danger - usually ending with him getting blindsided by an awaiting team of baddies. Well, in Kingdom of the Crystal Skull, he more or less finds himself in endless predicaments with baddies, but they just let him walk around - do as he pleases before plotting an escape. The environmental danger seems to have been forgotten, and in the past it always presented the best character and film set-pieces. Here, all we get is tediously repetitive scenarios that seem to suck the fun out of the character.

So whose to blame? Not the actors, they delivered what was expected. Spielberg? He seems to have tried to emulate as much of the original as possible, and I'm not sure that was as wise as it might seem. Lucas & co. for the script and story? I think so, I really think they just went to far without holding onto what made the series somewhat believable in films gone by. Especially considering Crystal Skulls are some of the Earths most interesting artifacts, much can be derived of their lore and mythic appeal. Instead, they seemed to say "no, not good enough. It needs to be the biggest one yet!"

Bigger isn't better.

And the next time you want to get the gang together, have a god damned bbq. 20 years we waited, we coulda waited 1 more for you to get it right.

Saturday, May 24, 2008

Is this thing still on?


What's that statute of limitations on a blog? It's been one past year of complete neglect, and yet here it is.

I'll save words for when they're more appropriate - but I'm going to try and shift a little more writing time to this thing again. Brett said I should, albeit something he mentioned sometime last year. But writing is writing, and though I've been doing it - I've never found the need to discuss much here...but why not start.

If you want to see what I've been doing beyond Screenwriting (I think that's what I've been doing) - you can check it out HERE. They gave me my own corner and everything. That site's still in pre-Beta...but it'll be properly published sometime this year.

Until next time (or year)