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So That Happened…..

what do i do now

Ok folks. For those of you that have stuck with me for the past 4 years, you may be wondering what is going to happen now. Well for starters, I still have 3 months worth of movies that I watched from before I started the blog (April-June 2014) that I have to write reviews for. So that is what I will do for the next few months. After that, I have the new movies from this year that I had picked up and need to review. Now you may be wondering why I didn’t review them as I got them. The answer is that I have a lot of things going on IRL and decided to plan out the blog in advance in some cases, such as when I had to go out of town or would be extremely busy certain days, and it was going to be easier for me to pre-write the blogs for those days so I didn’t have to worry about them. Whenever I got a new movie, it would tend to throw off the schedule so I decided to wait until I got all of the past movies out of the way, where I would know exactly which movie would occur which day, and then do the new ones after they were all done, as my schedule would be a little more normal then. So, the old movies and new movies will carry me into October and possibly sometime into November when it is all said and done. After that, I am going to take a bit of a break till the end of the year. This blog actually takes a bit of effort to do and I need the rest to recharge so to speak. During that time, I plan on going back to some of my older posts and adding tags and links to make them easier to look up online.

Of course, the question remains; “If you have finished watching all of your movies, what are you going to do?” Well, I have been giving that some thought and my two options really are to continue with the blog, or leave it finished as is. Personally, I have had some fun doing this so I decided to continue with the blog. I will continue to buy movies but I will also review movies that I stream online off of Netflix, Hulu, and other similar sites. Now obviously I will mostly be reviewing movies that catch my interest but I will also be open to suggestions so by all means, feel free to leave a comment and suggest a movie for me to watch. Also, please feel free to leave a comment on how I could improve things, as I am always open to some constructive criticism. Now, there are going to be some changes in my life going on so I can’t guarantee that I will be able to do a review every day like I have been but I will cross that bridge when I get to it.

So I guess that’s it for the explanation. T.T.F.N.

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action, horror, kaiju movie, movie, movie review, sci-fi, Uncategorized

June 20th, 2018 Movie – Reptillian (a.k.a. Yonggary)

yonggary

As the century was coming to an end, there was a lot of buzz about the Hollywood big budget remake of Godzilla. Well, South Korea decided to reboot their own monster and bring him into the new century as well. Now I had heard about this occurring and was actually curious about seeing it. My first encounter with this movie was actually catching the last 10 minutes or so on TV one day and my initial thoughts were, “What the hell is this?” I would eventually watch the whole movie when I picked it up on DVD but I have to say I was disappointed. See, much like the original Yongary, the original Korean version was not available for me to get, but this time it was not because the print was lost, but rather that it was never released on video in any market. So I am forced to watch the American version, which was released in the U.S. as Reptilian.

The plot: In Southeast Asia, an archaeological team is exploring some caverns but when one of the leaders, Dr. Hughes, gets separated from the group, the other leader, Dr. Campbell, refuses to go look for him, wanting to claim any finds for himself. As Dr. Hughes searches for the others, he finds several fossils including that of an alien being holding a strange gem, which shocks him and causes him to stumble and cry out. One of the team members hears him and wants to go looking for him but Campbell refuses, saying they are too close. He then sees a strange glowing rock and has the workers dig there but when the worker strikes the rock, an explosion occurs that kills all of the team members except for Campbell, who had ducked behind some rocks, and Hughes as he wasn’t there. Campbell steps out from the rocks and sees a rock with some hieroglyphs on it and starts laughing. Two years later, an alien mothership approaches the Earth, hiding behind the moon to avoid detection before launching several ships and destroying a satellite and space shuttle. Meanwhile, reporter Bud Black is sent to cover the story of Dr. Campbell’s latest discovery, a giant dinosaur fossil. Later that night, Dr. Hughes confronts Campbell’s assistant and niece Holly Davis but Campbell shows up and mocks Hughes for disappearing for the past 2 years. Hughes warns Campbell about his greed and tells him that they will all be in danger if Yonggary regains life. Some time later, the alien ships fire on the Earth, causing an electrical surge near the dig site that kills two workers. The next morning, Bud is taking some pictures of the accident but Campbell grabs his camera and destroys the film. He then tells the workers to get rid of the bodies and continue their work, offering them double their salary to continue. When Holly questions him, he speaks with her privately and despite her saying that it was the third “accident” in the last week, he refuses to let anything stop the dig and says she can leave if she doesn’t like it. Later that night, another worker is killed as the fossil begins to regrow it’s teeth and bones. Bud heard the scream and takes some pictures but Campbell again destroys the film, saying bad publicity won’t do either of them any good, then gets rid of the body but another body appears in the morning. Meanwhile, the U.S. military have detected the alien spaceship and General Murdock is placed in command of the situation. Back in Asia, Holly has left the dig site after Campbell’s refusal to investigate the deaths. She is approached by Hughes, who asks her to hear him out. He explains that there were more hieroglyphs in the cavern as well as the alien fossil and what he deciphered talked about how Yonggary would be brought back to life by a beam of light. When she asks why he didn’t tell the authorities, he tells her he was a “guest” of the U.S. government but they were more interested in the alien fossil than his warnings. Holly and Hughes head back to the dig site just as the fossil is completely unearthed and Campbell gloats in his believed supremacy. When the alien craft fires another beam at the site, it revives Yonggary, who attacks the site, killing Campbell and several workers, before being teleported away by the aliens. Meanwhile, the Murdock is told of the alien attack on the dig site and sends Captain Parker to investigate and he finds Hughes and Holly and begins questioning them before having Sgt. Archie take them back to their command center. Along the way, Hughes explains some more to Holly about what happened to him the last two years, and how NSIA (National Space Investigation Agency) had classified his information that he gave them so he chose to work on finishing decoding all of the hieroglyphs before trying to stop Campbell. Suddenly, Yonggary is teleported right in front of them and as they stop the jeep, they get out and observe Yonggary, with Hughes telling them not to make any sudden movement. When a fleet of helicopters attracts his attention, they quickly get away as the helicopters begin attacking Yonggary but have no success and he destroys several of them before being teleported away again. Back in the command center, Murdock is ranting about the situation when he is alerted to the arrival of Mr. Mills, a representative from NSIA, who says he had advanced knowledge of the alien craft, which angers Murdock when Mills says they knew about it months ago. Mills explains that a paleontologist had given them information of an alien civilization had visited the Earth over 200 million years ago but he stole sensitive data and disappeared. The aliens teleport Yonggary into the nearby city and Murdock and his team are able to get a visual of it before the aliens destroy the satellite. Archie enters the command center with Holly and Hughes and Mills says that Hughes is the paleontologist that was helping them. When Hughes tells Murdock that Mills chose to ignore his warnings and says he might be able to stop Yonggary if he can finish decoding the information on the disk he has, Mills tries to grab the disk but Archie stops him. As Murdock tries to coordinate an attack on Yonggary, Mills tries to leave but Murdock refuses to let him leave the building and has Archie escort him out of the command room. As a jet squadron begin attack Yonggary with no success, Murdock is informed that he has 5 hours to try to destroy Yonggary or else the President will authorize a nuke to be dropped. When Yonggary is teleported away again, Murdock organizes an evacuation of the city in case he returns, then tries to figure out what they should do next, deciding to activate an experimental T-Force squadron to attack Yongarry with jet packs if he returns. Meanwhile, Hughes and Holly manage to finish deciphering the rest of the hieroglyphs and realize that Yonggary is being controlled by the aliens by a diamond in it’s head but they are confused when it says that another beam of light will occur if the diamond is destroyed. Yonggary is teleported next to a nuclear plant and Parker leads the T Force to stop him. Hughes and Holly tell Murdock about the diamond and Parker is ordered to target it and when the aliens realize that they are targeting the diamond, they teleport him away. Back at the command center, Murdock has Mills brought back into the room and questions him about the diamond that Hughes had and he explains that it was essentially a non carbon material. Figuring out that they can track the teleport beam with infared, they follow the beam as Yonggary is teleported back to the city. Parker leads his team to attack Yonggary again but his jet pack is damaged by debris from an exploding building, forcing him to crash. As his team is getting destroyed, he orders them to fall back but one of his troops sacrifices himself to destroy the diamond before Yonggary can teleport away again. Parker attacks Yonggary but notices that he is acting different and stops as Yonggary appears non-aggressive. When some planes attack and accidentally hit a building, Yonggary stops it from falling on people and Hughes and Holly convince Murdock that Yonggary is on their side now and he calls off the attack. Murdock contacts the President and asks for more time, when their signals are suddenly jammed. They discover that Mills is jamming them, as he wants Yonggary dead for his own reasons but they are able to stop Mills and regain communications. They discover that the aliens have sent another monster named Cyker to fight Yonggary and the two monsters fight, with Yonggary seemingly killing it when he rips off it’s head. When Cyker continues fighting, Yonggary blows a fireball down it’s open neck, causing him to explode. Hughes and Holly cheer that Cyker is destroyed but Murdock warns them that it isn’t over yet, as they rush to stop the nuke from being dropped on the city, stopping it at the last second. With Cyker killed, the aliens choose to leave, saying they need to escape before Yonggary discovers his true powers while on Earth, Yonggary is transported to a deserted island to live.

This is honestly a truly disappointing movie to watch. The acting was honestly bad, with several characters going completely over the top with their delivery. Bruce Cornwell (Mills) and Richard Livingston (Campbell) were honestly the only two that gave any sort of emotion with their performances that helped make their characters more memorable; with Campbell coming across as a real egotistical asshole while Mills came across as a true, weaselly, self-serving government stooge. The story honestly felt kind of disjointed in what they were going for. I mean, I actually thought the idea of aliens bringing the Yonggary fossil back to life to destroy the world was kind of a neat idea, but the pacing of the movie and the various cutaways just made it difficult to really follow. The special effects were honestly just terrible. Instead of suitimation, they decided to make the monsters both CGI but while the creature designs looked good, the creatures looked soo fake when they were in the cities or fighting each other. It honestly made the movie look extremely cheap, which is a knock against it as it was apparently the most expensive South Korean film produced at the time. A let down of a movie and a sad way to more or less kill a franchise.

Rating: 1 1/2 out of 5

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action, comic book, drama, movie, movie review, sci-fi, Uncategorized

June 15th, 2018 Movie – Logan

logan

Every story has it’s end, and for Hugh Jackman, his time playing Wolverine was fast approaching. Yes, the man Hugh Jackman had announced that the 3rd solo Wolverine movie was going to be his last one, though apparently he has since said that he would be willing to reprise the role if he was in the Avengers or a Deadpool crossover. Anyways, when I first the plot of this movie, I was immediately intrigued because I liked the “Old Man Logan” story line and thought that using some aspects of that for the movie would be pretty neat. Then I saw the trailers and I was even more intrigued when it was revealed that X-23 was going to be a main character as well, as I always thought it was funny that she, much like Harley Quinn, made her way into the comics after first debuting in a cartoon. So when this hit theaters, I decided to go to an early Sunday morning showing and I was not disappointed with today’s movie, Logan.

The plot: In the year 2029, an aging and weakened Wolverine, slowly dying from the adamantium in his bones poisoning his body, is resting in the limo that he drives when a gang attempts to steal his tires. When he confronts them, they shoot him and continue trying to steal the tires but he gets back up and tries again to talk them out of it. When they attack him, he is forced to defend himself, trying his best to avoid damaging his car but when it is accidentally shot, he becomes enraged and begins killing them. After slowly healing and changing his clothes, Logan begins carrying around passengers in the El Paso area. The next day, he encounters a woman in the cemetery where he is working who recognizes him and begs for his help but he tells her to leave him alone and she angrily gets in her car and drives off, with a young girl in the back of the car staring back at him as they pass. After finishing for the day, he heads to the hospital to buy some medicine off of an orderly but when he gets back into his car, he finds a man named Pierce inside. Pierce recognizes Logan and says he is looking for a woman named Gabriela but Logan tells him he doesn’t know any Gabriela. Pierce leaves him his card before leaving and when he learns that Pierce works for Alkali-Transigen, then he gets pissed. As Logan heads across the border into Mexico, he makes a call to someone about a boat he is trying to buy, urgent to get it now, but the seller raises the price when he senses Logan’s urgency. Returning to the junk yard that he lives in, Logan is greeted by Caliban, who tells him that Xavier has had a rough night and claims to be communicating with someone. Logan dismisses what Caliban said and heads into the tank where Xavier is kept, as he is suffering from a brain disease that causes him to have dangerous seizures. As Logan tries to give him his medicine, Xavier has another seizure, paralyzing Caliban in the other room and Logan is forced to struggle to inject Xavier with the medicine. When the seizure stops, Xavier speaks with Logan and chastises him for forcing him to live in the tank like he does. After getting some rest, Logan prepares to go to work and receives a fare at a motel, only to find that it is Gabriela. Gabriela pleads with him to take her and the little girl, Laura, to North Dakota, offering him $20k now and $30K when they get there, saying they have to be there by Friday in order to make their window and cross into Canada. Logan reluctantly decides to take the job and heads back to Mexico to tell Xavier and Caliban he will be gone for a few days but when he returns to the motel, he finds Gabriela dead and Laura missing. When he returns to the junk yard, Caliban discovers Laura’s bag and ball in the trunk of the limo and questions Logan about it, just as Pierce arrives. Pierce questions Logan about Laura’s whereabouts only to be knocked out by Laura, who had stowed away in Logan’s trunk. As Xavier comes out and speaks with Laura, then invites her inside to eat, Logan tells Caliban to take Pierce and dump him out in the ravine but when Caliban goes to do that, he finds Pierce has regained consciousness and his back up has arrived. Back in the junk yard, Logan is getting ready to leave with Xavier when Pierce and his men return and hold restrain Logan while Pierce sends some men to find Laura. As they wait outside, they hear screams and gunshots coming from within the building and Laura soon walks out, carrying one of the men’s head. As she approaches Pierce and the other men, Logan is shocked to see two claws extending from her hands and she attacks and kills two men, then leads the others away. As the men chase her, she manages to attack and kill some more of them but they finally capture her until Logan helps her. Seeing some men going after Xavier in the limo, Logan goes to kill them, then he gets in the limo and drives off, picking up Laura on the way. They manage to break out of the junk yard and lose their pursuers by cutting across a passing train, forcing Pierce and his men to wait until it passes to try to follow them but Pierce tortures Caliban to force him to tell him where they are. Pulling over at a gas station, Logan and Xavier watch some video that Gabriela took with her phone and learn that Laura, along with several other children, were created by Transigen to be used as mutant soldiers and Laura happened to have been created from Logan’s DNA, making him her father in a manner of speaking. When the children hit puberty, they started to rebel against Transigen’s wishes so Transigen decided to make a new weapon and dispose of the children but Gabriela and several other nurses decided to rescue as many as they could and help them get to Eden, a supposed safe haven for mutants in Canada. Charles says that they should help Laura, mentioning that she is just like Logan when he first came to the X-Men, but Logan doesn’t really want to get involved and would rather try to just disappear. Deciding to rest in Oklahoma City, Logan, Xavier, and Laura check into a casino and Logan heads out to get them a new car but as he gets rid of the limo, he discovers that Charles had hidden one of his pills in order to fool Logan into thinking he took it. As he waits for the new car to get tires put on it, he reads some of the comics Laura had brought with her and discovers that Eden was mentioned in the comic and he believes it is just a myth. Returning to the hotel, he finds Pierce’s men outside and he makes his way past them just as everyone suddenly freezes as Xavier has another seizure. Making his way towards the room, Logan sees Pierce’s men frozen in the attempt to capture Xavier and Laura and he kills them in their frozen state while Laura grabs Xavier’s medicine and hands it to Logan to give to him. They make their way out of the hotel as everyone else is still recovering from the event and leave. As they keep travelling, Logan chastises Xavier for not taking his medicine and as they argue, they are almost run off the road by a self driving truck. Seeing a truck carrying a trailer of horses also run off the road and Xavier convinces Logan to help the family, the Munsons, recapture the horses and get there truck out of the ditch and Kathryn Munson offers them dinner for their help, which Xavier accepts. Meanwhile, Dr. Zander Rice, the head of Transigen, meets up with Pierce and after chastising him for his failure in recapturing Laura, he goes to Caliban and begins talking to him to try and convince him to help them locate Laura. At the family’s house, Logan, Xavier, and Laura enjoy the meal and go to leave but Will Munson says the nearest hotel is 2 hours away and offers to put them up for the night. Suddenly, Kathryn says the water is shut off and Will goes to deal with the problem, saying it is some locals that are trying to run them off their land and Logan offers to help him. When they get there, they fix the problem only to be confronted by the major farm’s new owner, who argues with Will about the agreement Will had with the previous owner no longer being good. When he threatens Will, Logan intercedes and runs them off. Back at the house, Laura is sleeping and Xavier tells Logan to let her sleep but as the figure approaches Xavier, it is revealed to be a clone of Logan. The clone, X-24, stabs Xavier in the chest and Laura attacks him but he knocks her out and places her in restraints. The Munson’s son tries to stop 24 but he is stabbed as is Kathryn when she tries to shoot him. Will and Logan return and hear the commotion and Will is stabbed  in the chest and Logan sees 24 carrying Laura away and races upstairs to check on Xavier. In their truck, Rice and Pierce watch 24 bringing Laura back to them when he is confronted by the farmer and his men and when they shoot him, he begins attacking them. Meanwhile, Logan carries Xavier to their truck and tries to keep him alive but he ends up passing away. Rice goes out to try and get 24 to stop and bring Laura back to them only for Logan to attack 24 and try to rescue Laura. 24 is able to overpower Logan and moves to kill him when Will, who was still alive, drives his truck into 24, pinning him to a nearby tractor, then shoots him repeatedly before finally dying. Pierce goes to help get Laura but Caliban, having grabbed some grenades when nobody was looking, pulls the pins and drops them, sacrificing himself to try and stop them. Logan grabs Laura and drives off and they stop to bury Xavier by a lake but when Logan tries to start the truck again, it dies and he takes out his rage and frustration on the truck before collapsing to the ground. When he comes too, he finds himself in a doctor’s office, with the doctor saying that Laura had flagged down a motorist for help. The doctor wants Logan to check into a hospital to get treatment, saying something inside him is poisoning him, but Logan says for his own good, forget he saw them and they leave. Laura leads Logan to a jeep that she had acquired while he was passed out and as he thanks her for saving him, she says “de nada”, speaking to Logan for the first time. This causes an argument between her and Logan as she wants him to take her to North Dakota and he starts to refuse but finally relents. Logan drives as far as he can but as he starts to fall asleep at the wheel, Laura forces him to pull over and tells him to rest. When Logan wakes up, he finds that Laura had continued driving and reached a lokout station in the mountains. Logan passes out again and the kids that are there help bring him inside and treat his injuries, giving him some medicine that will help him heal if given in small doses. When Logan recovers enough to get out of bed, he tells Rictor, the kid’s leader, that they should leave before Transigen catches them and Rictor tells him that they will be leaving before dawn. He offers Logan the rest of the money he was promised but Logan refuses it, then argues with Laura again on his actions. The next morning, Logan wakes up to find the kids have all left but as he looks around the lookout station, he sees a bunch of drones flying towards the mountain border and sees some jeeps heading in that direction. Logan grabs the medicine and races towards the woods, injecting himself along the way with the medicine, which super charges his healing factor. As Transigen’s soldiers work on capturing the kids, Logan starts killing some of them, managing to rescue Laura but she notes that the medicine is wearing off as his wounds are not healing. The two sneak up to where Pierce and his remaining men are holding the captured kids and Logan tells Laura to wait for his signal to save her friends. He then approaches and Rice and Pierce move towards him, where it is revealed that Rice is the son of the doctor that helped Stryker put the adamantium into him. Pierce also tells Logan that Rice is the one that released the virus which prevented more mutants from being born, effectively wiping them out, and Logan ends up shooting Rice and injuring Pierce. Laura kills the guards, with some of the children using their powers to help but Pierce lets 24 loose to deal with Logan. As the two men fight, Laura moves to help Logan when he is overpowered and Pierce shoots Logan in the leg with a harpoon to restrain him but the kids all use their powers to kill Pierce. Logan gets free and goes to help Laura only for Rictor to use his powers to drop a truck onto 24. Logan tells Laura and the children to get out of their but 24 recovers and stabs Logan, then impales him onto a log. Laura grabs an adamantium bullet that Logan had kept, when he had contemplated killing himself, and uses it to kill 24. She then works on cutting off the branch and Logan tells her not to grow up to be a weapon like she was created to be before he dies. Laura cries out over his death, calling him daddy as she hugs him, and the kids bury him by a lake, much like Xavier was buried, and as they head to the border, Laura turns the cross they made onto it’s side to form an X, marking Logan’s passing as the last X-Man.

Logan met with high praise from the critics, holding a certified fresh rating of 93% on Rotten Tomatoes. The critical consensus on the site is, “Hugh Jackman makes the most of his final outing as Wolverine with a gritty, nuanced performance in a violent but surprisingly thoughtful superhero action film that defies genre conventions.” In the UK, the first wide release showing of this film was at the unusual time of 10:23 p.m., rather than the usual midnight showing for a major release. This is a reference to the film including the character of X-23, as X is the Roman numeral for 10. The movie was a box office hit, earning $619 million off of a $127 million budget and served as a great send off for Hugh Jackman’s final movie in this role.

This was a great movie and honestly one of the best ones in the franchise. The acting was great, with Hugh Jackman putting in an incredible performance as Logan, while Patrick Stewart was equally good as Xavier, with the dynamic between them making for some pretty funny scenes in the otherwise pretty dramatic movie. Dafne Keen was also great in her role as Laura, especially her interaction with Logan, while Boyd Holbrook and Richard E. Grant were good as Pierce and Rice respectively. The story was great, and while I knew that they couldn’t really do a full version of “Old Man Logan” due to the majority of the characters being licensed to other studios, they story they did create was very well written. Since no mutants had been born in 25 years in this movie, this seems like it is in a completely different universe from any of the other movies, though Xavier mentioning the fight on Liberty Island means it at least has some relevance to the original movie. One thing I did like was the odd family dynamic that came about during the movie, especially with Logan being forced into the father/caretaker role, which is something that he is obviously not used to doing or comfortable with. The special effects were pretty good and I liked some of the ways they used the effects to showcase Logan’s deteriorating condition, such as when one of his claws doesn’t fully extend when he is fighting the thugs. Definitely a great movie to watch and a worthy finale to the Wolverine story.

Rating: 4 1/2 out of 5

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January 25th, 2018 Movie – Teen Titans: Trouble In Tokyo

teen titans trouble in tokyo

T-E-E-N! T-I-T-A-N-S! Teen Titans! Let’s Go! One thing I am not ashamed to admit is that I do enjoy watching cartoons, even as an adult. The thing that some people don’t consider is that there are plenty of times that cartoons are written with the fact that adults watch them as well, and will have a lot of subtle humor that adults will pick up on but it will go over kids heads. Regardless, I remember watching Teen Titans when it was on Cartoon Network and thought it was one of the best written cartoons to come out in a long time. Today’s movie, Teen Titans: Trouble In Tokyo, is kind of like a series finale, coming out a couple of months after the show ended, and one that I was eager to watch.

The plot: A brightly colored ninja named Saico-Tek begins attacking Jump City in order to draw out the Teen Titans; Robin, Starfire, Cyborg, Raven, and Beast Boy. The Titans attempt to capture Saico-Tek and eventually do so, but not before Saiko-Tek damages Titans Tower. As Raven directs the others into helping clean up the damage, Robin begins interrogating Saiko-Tek to find out why he attacked their city and their home. Saiko-Tek eventually reveals he was sent there by his boss, Brushogun, then kicks the sprinkler system and disappears in the falling water. When the Titans can find no trace of Saiko-Tek in the city, Robin decides they should head to Tokyo to track down Brushogun and bring him to justice. When they arrive in Tokyo, Beast Boy starts to treat it as a vacation and wants to head to the famous comic book factory but Robin says they are heroes, not tourists, so they should find Brushogun and try to stay out of trouble. When they find themselves lost and unable to understand the language, Starfire kisses a boy (which makes Robin jealous) in order to learn Japanese and starts to lead them where they want to go when a giant reptile begins to attack the city. The Titans try to stop it but are unsuccessful and just before the reptile kills Robin, he is saved by Tokyo’s supernatural defense force, Commander Uehara Daizo and the Tokyo Troopers. Daizo greets the Titans, giving them a tour of their facility, and Robin asks if they can use it to track down Brushogun but Daizo says that Brushogun is simply an urban legend and doesn’t exist. Seemingly with nothing left for them to do, Beast Boy, Cyborg, and Raven split up to explore the city, while Starfire drags Robin along with her, unaware that a mysterious individual is observing them and creates 4 beings to follow them. Cyborg heads to an all you can eat sushi restaurant while Raven searches for something to read, with a shop keeper handing her a pack of gum. Beast Boy laments about the comic factory being closed for the day but sees a cute girl and starts following her around, eventually being led to a karaoke bar. Meanwhile, Robin and Starfire keep hanging out and eventually wind up on Tokyo Tower, where they start to express their mutual attraction to each other. Before they can kiss, Robin focuses his attention back onto Brushogun and says they are heroes and don’t have time for this, upsetting Starfire and causing her to fly away. As Robin tries to focus on the object left by Saiko-Tek at the tower, he is attacked by Saiko-Tek. Robin and Saiko-Tek begin fighting and Robin eventually catches him and pummels him into the ground but as he stands up, with Saiko-Tek’s blood on his hands, the crowd believes he killed him and Daizo and the Tokyo Troopers arrest him. Meanwhile, Raven finds a bookstore and asks the shopkeeper about Brushogun and he hands her a book about his history. Meanwhile, Beast Boy is mobbed by fan girls after his karaoke singing and he runs away, running into Cyborg, who was running from the angry chefs, and the two quickly hide from their pursuers. Starfire is feeling dejected about Robin but after talking with a little girl, feels that Robin does care for her and she wants to find him, only to see a news report about his arrest and the mayor calling for the other Titans to turn themselves in or leave Tokyo. Starfire contacts the other Titans and tells them the news and they make plans to meet up but they end up being attacked by the 4 beings; with a blue robot boy attacking Starfire, a ghost-like being attacking Raven, a yellow robot attacking Cyborg, and Beast Boy being attacked by the girl he had followed, who had turned into a pink cat-girl. Meanwhile, Robin is being transported to prison when a note with the name Brushogen slips into the van. Suddenly, the name lifts off the paper and transforms into one of Saiko-Tek’s explosive throwing stars, causing an explosion in the van. Robin drags the driver to safety and then leaves, changing clothes with a mugger, who had tried to mug him in order, in order to avoid detection. Robin then heads to a dive bar and after beating up the patrons, asks for information about Brushogun and is told that he was real but disappeared just before the new criminals showed up. When the Tokyo Troopers arrive, Robin attempts to escape and after a chase, is surrounded by the troopers but before they can arrest him, Starfire flies down and rescues him. Starfire takes Robin to a temple and hands him his uniform and the two are about to kiss when Beast Boy and the others show up. Cyborg tells Robin they reexamined the crime scene and it wasn’t blood on Robin’s costume, but ink, which was also on all of them after their encounters with their attackers. Raven then explains the history of Brushogun, who was a comic artist who used dark magic to bring his drawings to life but the spell backfired and he ended up becoming Tokyo’s first super villain. Realizing he didn’t kill anyone because Saiko-Tek wasn’t really alive, Robin dons his costume again just as they find themselves surrounded by their various pursuers. The Titans manage to escape and start working to track down Brushogun when Robin realizes where he is hiding; the comic book factory Beast Boy wanted them to visit earlier. The Titans make their way inside and find that Brushogun is actually a captive himself, trapped in a cursed printing press which uses his powers to create villains against his will. Brushogun explains that he sent the first Saiko-Tek to them as a message, knowing that they would head to Tokyo to investigate. When they ask Brushogun who is the one controlling the villains, Robin deduces that it is Daiko, who shows up and has his troops attack the Titans. When the Titans defeat his troops, Daiko uses the press to create multiple copies of Saiko-Tek and the other creations to attack them. As the Titans fight their attackers, Robin confronts Daiko, who jumps into the press and merges with Brushogun, becoming a monstrous creature made of ink. Daizo then creates more beings to fight the Titans and the Titans defends themselves against the attacks. Seeing Brushogun in Daizo’s stomach, Robin heads up to him and asks how to stop Daizo and Brushogun tells him that if he is freed from the press, Daizo will lose his powers. Robin frees Brushudo, who thanks Robin for saving him before fading away, and the spell breaks. Robin checks on Starfire and as he starts to talk about them being more than heroes, Starfire tells him to stop talking and the two kiss, with the other Titans looking on and Cyborg saying, “Well it’s about time.” The next day, the Titans are rewarded for saving the city and exposing Daizo for his crimes. Beast Boy finds himself mobbed by fan girls again, Cyborg is awarded a mountain of sushi to eat, and Raven is made the mascot for the gum she was given. Afterwards, Robin says that maybe they do deserve a vacation once in a while and Beast Boy says next time they should go to Mexico, prompting Raven to smack him.

All of the humor that was in the TV series was able to make it into this movie, making this a really funny movie to watch. The voice acting was great, with all of the original people returning to voice their respective characters. The story was well written, making for a great stand alone movie that did not need to reference anything from the TV show to carry it but able to stand on it’s own merits, and did a great job of mixing in a somewhat serious plot with some humorous moments to lighten the mood. While I did like that they gave some resolution to the Robin/Starfire drama, which was a constant running gag in the show, I will admit that it did feel like it was done as a bit of fan service and wasn’t really essential to the story. The animation was great, with the cut scene animations making me really laugh several times. Whether you were a fan of the show, a fan of comic book based cartoons in general, or just a big kid at heart, this movie will definitely entertain you.

Rating: 4 1/2 out of 5

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action, adventure, animation, movie, movie review, sci-fi, Uncategorized

December 15th, 2017 Movie – Superman: Doomsday

superman doomsday

In 1992, an announcement was made that rocked the comic book industry, and the world itself; DC comics was going to kill Superman. The event would become one of the most talked about events worldwide, with Superman (vol. 2) #75

superman 75(the actual comic where he died) becoming the highest selling comic of all time. As popular as the story was, it only makes sense that they would make a movie based on it. So to jump start their new line of animated films, DC decided to do just that. So let’s see how the animated version lives up to the hype from the comics as I watch today’s movie, Superman: Doomsday.

The plot: At the Daily Planet, Lois Lane and Perry White are arguing about her article on a LexCorp charity being a front, with Perry refusing to print it to avoid being sued for libel. As Lois storms out of his office, Perry says goodbye to Clark Kent, who is getting ready to travel to Afghanistan as a foreign correspondent, and Clark says goodbye to Lois before he leaves. Elsewhere, a secret LexCorp project is digging deep underground to tap into the Earth’s core as a new power source when the uncover an alien spaceship. As Lex Luthor watches from a video uplink, the workers accidentally pierce the spaceship, causing an inert gas to escape as a hologram of an alien being warns them about what is inside. When the gas is dispersed, a massive figure inside the ship suddenly breaks free and proceeds to kill everyone in the tunnel, as well as back up on the surface. Elsewhere, Superman and Lois are having a romantic getaway at the Fortress of Solitude but Lois’ thoughts drift back to Clark. She comments to Superman about how Clark seems to become more distant, physically and emotionally, the closer she gets to him and, getting suspicious, starts trying to find out more about Superman and gets upset that he won’t admit who he really is. Meanwhile, Doomsday continues making his way through the woods, killing everyone and everything he encounters, until he finally reaches Metropolis. At the same time, Luthor tells his assistant to make sure there is no sign his company was ever at the dig site, as he doesn’t want to be held responsible for unleashing Doomsday on the city. Back at the Fortress, Superman apologizes to Lois and starts to tell her who he really is when his robot servant informs him of the events in Metropolis. As Superman prepares to leave, the robot says it found mention of Doomsday in his father’s records and that it was created to be the perfect killing machine while being practically unkillable itself. Superman carries Lois back to Metropolis with him, setting her down on the roof of the Daily Planet while he flies off to face Doomsday. When he arrives at where the military is trying to stop Doomsday, Superman attempts to freeze the creature but it breaks free from the ice and begins to attack Superman. Lois and Jimmy use the Daily Planet’s helicopter to report on the story but Doomsday spots them and attacks the helicopter. Superman rescues them, knocking Doomsday into a building, then sets the helicopter down and tells Lois and Jimmy to run while he continues to battle Doomsday. Doomsday appears to get the upper hand, battering Superman to the point he is coughing up blood, but when Doomsday turns his attention onto a little girl who is crying nearby, Superman grabs Doomsday and flies up into space, then turns around and speeds back to Earth, pummeling Doomsday as they fall. The two crash into the street and Doomsday is finally killed while Superman staggers out of the crater they left before collapsing on the ground as Lois rushes to him. Superman asks if everyone is ok and when Lois tells him he saved everyone, Superman dies, with Lois and Jimmy both crying over him while in Smallville, Martha Kent breaks into tears as she watches the footage on TV. A funeral is held for Superman and as Perry walks Lois away, she notices Martha leaving as well. Meanwhile, Jimmy is approached by the head of a tabloid, who offers Jimmy a job which Jimmy accepts. As Perry tells Lois to take some time off and go be with family, Lois decides to travel to Smallville to see Martha. Unsure of how much she might know about her, Lois stammers her way through an introduction but Martha, suspicious at first, takes pity on her and invites her in to talk. Meanwhile, Mercy tells Luthor that everything was taken care of so there is no sign of their involvement at the dig site and Luthor kills her so she won’t become a loose end. When the Toyman kidnaps a bus full of kids, Lois heads to the rooftop he is holding them on and tries to get them to safety. She is spotted as she is saving the last girl and Toyman throws the bus off the roof but Lois, and the rest of the onlookers, are surprised when she is rescued by Superman. Superman sets the bus down and goes after Toyman, defeating his giant mechanical spider and dropping him in front of the police before flying off with Lois. Lois asks how he is back and he says he isn’t sure, just that he woke up in darkness. When he drops her off at her apartment, Lois kisses Superman but he doesn’t kiss her back and Lois gets concerned. Meanwhile, Superman heads LexCorp to confront Luthor, who tricks him into entering a room lit by red sunlight and proceeds to beat him up with Kryptonite laced gauntlets. After rendering Superman unconscious, Luthor tells him that he is doing a good job in pretending to be Superman. Luthor then heads to another room, where he has the Superman’s body kept in a stasis chamber, and reveals that he cloned Superman so that he can take the glory for his accomplishments. As time passes, Lois and Martha both get suspicious about Superman as there has been no sign or contact from Clark to either of them. At LexCorp, Luthor goes to mock Superman’s body again only to discover that it is missing. At the Fortress of Solitude, Superman awakens and finds the robot tending to him, explaining that his biology had slowed his metabolism to a crawl in order to heal. He then explains about the clone but says it is best to leave it be for now, as it is helping the people of Metropolis, and instead he should focus on healing. Back in Metropolis, the clone sees a news broadcast of the Toyman having escaped custody and killing a kid before he is recaptured. Superman heads to the police station and grabs the captured Toyman, then flies him up into the air before letting him go, where he falls to his death. As the clone starts behaving more totalitarian in his dispensing of justice, Luthor hands him a list of people that might have stolen Superman’s body and tells him to find it discreetly, warning the clone he can kill him if he gets out of line. The clone leaves LexCorp and heads to a beauty salon, where he uses a mirror to examine himself and discovers a small, lead sphere in his brain. Realizing that it must contain Kryptonite inside, the clone uses his heat vision to burn a hole in his head, then removes the sphere. Back at the Fortress, Superman is in a chamber that is accelerating his solar absorbtion as he continues to heal and regain his strength. Lois heads to LexCorp to ask Luthor how he got Superman to be his puppet and when Luthor attempts to seduce her and kisses her, she drugs him and knocks him unconscious. Lois and Jimmy then find the files and secret room, where Luthor has created dozens of clones. Luthor regains consciousness and admits he is making the clones as his own personal police force, then prepares to kill them when the clone arrives. Luthor attempts to kill the clone but when the detonator doesn’t work, he notices the scar on the clone’s forehead and realizes that he removed the safeguard. The clone proceeds to destroy all of the other clones and computers in the room, then tells Lois and Jimmy to evacuate while he goes after Luthor. Luthor heads into his red sun room and challenges the clone but the clone simply seals Luthor into the room, then pulls it free from the building before throwing it down to the ground, seemingly killing Luthor. Back at the Fortress, the robot informs Superman about what is happening and Superman says he has to go back. The robot warns that he is not at full strength and the clone could kill him again, then hands him Luthor’s Kryptonite gun to use as a way to even the playing field. Back in Metropolis, the military is called in to deal with the clone but he easily destroys all of their vehicles. Superman arrives, wearing a black solar suit to help him recharge, and he speaks with the clone first before they start fighting. Superman tries to shoot the clone with the Kryptonite gun but the clone quickly knocks it away and they begin fighting. Lois and Jimmy start to cover the action but when it seems like the clone is getting the upper hand, Lois heads off to get the Kryptonite gun. As the clone goes to kill Superman, Lois shoots the clone with the gun but before she can fire another shot, the clone destroys the gun, sending the Kryptonite cell falling into some tar. Superman renews his fight with the clone but the clone overpowers him. As the clone grabs the Superman memorial to crush Superman with, Superman sees the Kryptonite cell stuck to the clone’s chest and uses his heat vision to cause it to explode, sending a cloud of Kryptonite smoke to surround the clone. The clone falls to the ground with the memorial falling on top of him and as the clone staggers away from the smoke, he collapses in front of Superman, begging him to protect the people. Lois approaches Superman, wanting to know if he is the real Superman, and when Superman kisses her, she accepts he is the real Superman. Superman is worried that the people of Metropolis won’t be so accepting of him but when a kid approaches him and asks if he will go back to wearing his normal uniform, Lois says she isn’t worried as more people approach Superman. Back at Lois’s apartment, Superman emerges from her shower as she is writing an article. When he corrects a spelling mistake in her article, he comments about being the Smallville Elementary spelling bee champ and when she turns to face him, she sees he has put on his glasses to reveal to her that he is Clark. Lois kisses him, then tells him to call his mother as they embrace while back at LexCorp, Luthor is shown to have survived and is recuperating from his injuries while thinking of his next plan to destroy Superman.

I am of mixed opinions about this movie. I mean, the death, and return, of Superman was a months long affair in the comics and to condense it down to 77 minutes definitely means a lot of stuff out. That being said, this wasn’t that bad of a movie. The voice acting was good, with Adam Baldwin (Superman), Anne Heche (Lois) and James Marsters (Luthor) doing good jobs voicing their characters. Obviously, the story is not going to be like the comics but it wasn’t too bad. I did like that they included a brief scene of the tattered cape hanging from a pole (as seen in the cover above). I also liked that they included the clone aspect from the comics, though in this case it was a full grown copy while in the comics, it was a half Superman, half Luthor hybrid that became Superboy. My favorite part was the brief voice cameo that Kevin Smith had, where he commented about the giant mechanical spider as this was a nod to when he was working on a Superman movie in the late 90’s and the producer kept insisting that he add a giant spider to it. The animation in this was pretty good and the lighting kept the movie pretty dark and gritty, which helped keep with the rather somber tone of the movie. It is not as good as the comics, but it is a decent movie and worth watching.

Rating: 2 1/2 out of 5

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December 5th, 2017 Movie – Street Fighter II: The Animated Movie

street fighter 2

The summer after I graduated high school, I ended up renting a lot of anime movies pretty much every day. It really was a rountine for most of the summer; wake up, head to the video store to rent a couple of animes, head off to work, get home, watch said movies, go to sleep, repeat. Now this is one of the anime movies I had rented during that period and I thought it was fantastic, definitely better than the live action movie. My brothers got it on VHS and I know we watched it several times back in the day and years later, I ended up buying it on DVD. Now let’s get right into today’s movie, Street Fighter II: The Animated Movie.

The plot: On a dark, stormy night, a Japanese martial artist named Ryu is fighting Sagat, an undefeated Muay Thai champion, unaware that their fight is being observed and data is being collected on the two fighters. After a fierce battle, Ryu scars Sagat’s chest after hitting him with a Shoryuken and as an enraged Sagat charges at him, Ryu finishes the fight by hitting him with a Hadouken. A few years later, MI6 agent Cammy White attacks and kills a Justice Minister but is quickly captured by security. As they watch video of the incident, Interpol Agent Chun-Li explains that Cammy has been interrogated and has no memory of the last 3 years, leading them to believe that she had been brainwashed by Shadaloo. After showing pictures of three men (Sagat, Balrog, and Vega) who have already been recruited by Shadaloo, Chun-Li says that they are organizing a joint operation with the U.S. military in order to take down Shadaloo and it’s leader, M. Bison. Chun-Li heads to an Air Force base to speak with Captain Guile about the task force but he dismisses her, saying that he will destroy Bison on his own, angering Chun-Li. Meanwhile, Bison, Sagat, Balrog, and Vega arrive at the Shadaloo base in Thailand, Bison’s head scientist shows him their newest model of monitor cyborgs, which they use to collect fighter data. Bison asks if they have found Ryu let, as Bison wants him in his organization, but the scientist admits they haven’t, though scoffs that Ryu’s ability is really as high as their data suggests. Elsewhere, Ryu is training high in the mountains and as he trains, he thinks back to when he was first studying martial arts with his friend Ken Masters. Some time later, Ryu goes travelling to find tough martial artists to fight and ends up fighting Fei-Long in China. After beating Fei-Long, Ryu and Fei-Long are walking down the street and Fei-Long tells him that he recognizes his name now, and tells him about Sagat joining Shadaloo before the two men go their separate ways. In Seattle, Ken meets up with his girlfriend Eliza for lunch and ends up fighting T. Hawk later that evening, unaware that a monitor cyborg is observing their fight. Some time later, Ryu travels to India, where he accidentally causes a young girl to spill the milk she was taking to her mother so he gives her some money so she can buy some more milk. While there, Ryu observes a fight between a yoga master named Dahlsim and a sumo named E. Honda. A monitor cyborg is also observing the fight and Dahlsim gets the upper hand when he uses his mysticism to paralyze E. Honda but he suddenly senses Ryu’s power and gets distracted, allowing Honda to win the fight, while the monitor cyborg attempts to locate the fighter Dahlsim was talking about. After leaving the fight, Ryu sees the little girl running towards him when she is knocked down by a Shadaloo assassin, who had just killed a public speaker speaking out against Shadaloo. When security wounds the assassin, other Shadaloo agents kill the assassin and fire into the crowd to escape, causing Ryu to attack them and knock several of them out. Ryu then goes to check on the girl, who is ok and was bringing him his change but he tells her to keep it. After she is taken away in an ambulance, Honda approaches Ryu and offers him half of the money he won in his fight, saying that he would have lost if Ryu hadn’t of been there. Back at the Shadaloo base, Bison is shown video of Ken’s fight and the similarities that his fighting style has with Ryu’s. After learning that Ken and Ryu studied martial arts at the same school, he decides to go after Ken and convert him to his cause. Back in the U.S., Chun-Li again attempts to get Guile to join her, telling her that she wants Bison dead because he killed her father but she chooses to put her duty first and Guile finally agrees to help. The two travel to see Dee Jay, a fighter that Guile had heard about, and warn him about Shadaloo being after him, with Chun-Li kicking the head off of a monitor cyborg that was watching him, but they are unaware that a second cyborg was watching them from the roof of the club. Bison sees the video and decides to send Vega after Chun-Li, then calls Balrog in Las Vegas, who is promoting Bison’s interests there before watching a fight between the Russian wrestler Zangief and Blanca, the Brazilian man/beast. Vega attacks Chun-Li in her apartment and severely injures her with his blades but Chun-Li manages to beat him, kicking him through the wall of her apartment where he falls to his death. Guile arrives at the apartment and takes the injured Chun-Li to the hospital, then calls into Interpol to explain what happened. Interpol tells him of the monitor cyborg following Ken and Guile says that once he knows that Chun-Li is stable, he will head to Seattle to check on Ken. In Seattle, Ken is driving with Eliza and asks her to marry him and she tells him she will think about it. After dropping her off at her house, Ken leaves but he is soon confronted by Bison, who easily captures Ken and flies off, just as Guile arrives and finds Ken’s car. Returning to Interpol, Guile learns that they have found Ryu’s location and though there are monitor cyborgs are in the area, they don’t believe they have located him due to his constant movements so Guile heads out to find Ryu. Meanwhile, Bison begins subjecting Ken to his mind control process when he learns that Guile is heading to the Thai/Laos border and realizes that Guile has located Ryu. Bison decides to take Ken with him so that Ken and Ryu can have the battle they both want and Sagat pleads with Bison to let him face Ryu again but Bison refuses, telling Sagat that he needs to go to New York to deal with Cammy and Vega. After visiting Chun-Li, who is in a coma, Guile heads to see Ryu only to realize that Bison had followed him there. When Bison’s plane lands, Ryu is shocked to see Ken there with Bison and when he goes to confront him, Ken attacks him. Honda, who had been staying with Ryu, attempts to attack Bison but Bison dodges it and Honda ends up fighting with Balrog, and the two end up falling off the mountain. Meanwhile, Bison confronts Guile, who tries to attack him but is unable to land a single blow on Bison and Bison uses his psycho power to send Guile flying off the mountain. Ken and Ryu continue to fight, with Ken beating Ryu as he refuses to fight the brainwashed Ken and tries to free him from Bison’s control. As the fight progresses, Ken starts having flashbacks to his training and he eventually breaks free from Bison’s control, only for Bison to appear and toss Ken aside. Ryu tries to go help Ken but Bison stops him and the two begin fighting. Ken regains consciousness and finds his legs won’t support his weight. Crawling up the hill, he sees Bison’s plane and remembers what happened, then sees Bison and Ryu fighting and calls out to them but stumbles back down the hill. Ken channels his chi to heal his legs, then heads out to help Ryu fight Bison. The two work together and manage to beat Bison, using a double Hadouken to send Bison flying into his plane, causing it to explode while Honda arrives back up the mountain, carrying Balrog and Guile with him. At the same time, the U.S. and Interpol forces attack Shadaloo’s main base, destroying it. Guile returns to New York, where he receives a call from the hospital. Getting there, he finds Chun-Li covered with a sheet and, thinking that she is dead, tells her that he got their revenge but Chun-Li reveals that she was playing a trick on him and embraces him. Meanwhile, Ryu and Ken are talking to each other, saying that they have to settle their score the next time they see each other. Eliza picks Ken up and they offer Ryu a lift but he chooses to walk and heads off down the highway. As he is walking, a semi comes barreling towards him and when he turns to look, he sees Bison driving it so he leaps to attack him, unaware that a monitor cyborg is watching him.

This is a much better adaptation of the video game and definitely a fun movie to watch. The voice acting was pretty good and the dubbing matched up the lip movements pretty well, though some of the dialogue just sounded weird. The story was good, bringing up all of the various characters introduced in Street Fighter II, as well as the 4 new characters  and showcasing them much like they are in the depicted in the video game. I also liked the brief appearance of Akuma in India, as he was a hidden character in the some of the later versions of Street Fighter II. The animation was very good and some of the back ground scenery, such as the mountains, were incredibly realistic looking. Definitely a better movie rendition of the video game and I think something like this should be how most video game movies should be done.

Rating: 4 1/2 out of 5

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