Archive for April, 2008

Another Hulk trailer!

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , on April 30, 2008 by Brandon

Yup, you heard that right. After months and months of no trailer, the Hulk is giving us overload with yet another trailer in less than two months. I’ll gladly take it.

Mean, green, smashing machine!

It looks like the movie might pick up immediately after the end of the last Hulk. He’s in South America, where we last left Eric Bana at the end of Ang Lee’s hulk. We shall see. Only about a month and a half left.

Mario Galaxy? Psh. Give me Sonic Xtreme any day.

Posted in Video Game Buzz with tags , , , , , , on April 26, 2008 by Brandon

Ten years before the mustachioed plumber wowed the pants off video gamers everywhere with his high-flying multi-galaxial game, Sonic was far ahead as usual, laughing his ass off because while Mario was wasting his time collecting the same coins in the same castles over and over again, Sonic had dashed far ahead was was way ahead of his time.

Here’s the article, as well as some early pitch videos.

And just for the hell of it, an old school Sonic level – Ice Cap Zone. 🙂

I suppose this isn’t news to many of Sonic’s die-hard fans, but I thought I’d post something on it anyways. Apparently back in the mid-90’s Sonic Team was working on a next-gen title that was gonna take Sonic into entirely new territory. If you watch those videos, you’ll notice something very similar between Sonic Team and Mario Galaxy – yeah, that’s right, the same planetary-kinds of models. The same massive and detailed colorful environments to explore. And remember, all of the above are from uncompleted models of the game. Imagine how a finished game would have looked. That, and the music as actually still really really good, vintage Sonic with just the tiniest hint of new.

Reading the story, it’s really sad how plain old bureaucracy and video gaming politics killed the once great Hedgehog. I mean, look at those videos. Those are amazingly fantastic for their time, and not only that, but way ahead of everything. People simply weren’t thinking like that back then, but Sonic Team was, and as changed as Sonic Team is since then, this puts more strength in my faith that Sonic Unleashed will be a fantastic game.

It also only makes me love Sonic that much more. Long before Mario looked to the stars, Sonic was already up there, smiling and collecting rings and invincibility stars and kicking Robotnik’s (NOT Eggman, dammit) ass. When Mario finally got up there Sonic was long gone, and here’s hoping that Sonic Unleashed is where he’s been while all these travesty games in his great name have come out.

Gah, just LOOK at those videos! Look how amazing they look, and even more impressively, the graphics kick Mario 64’s ass. No wonder Sonic Team sucks now – this massive fumble only shows how much their poor politics made them stick their own feet up their butts. Ah well. You can’t have it all….:-(

“He’s changed the rules.”

Posted in TV Buzz with tags , , , , on April 25, 2008 by Brandon

I’m a regular watcher of “Lost” and I have to commend the show for every so often throwing a completely unexpected wrench into the series, and this past week they did it.

WARNING! SPOILERS!

If you haven’t seen this past week’s Lost, don’t read this next little bit. You have been fairly warned. Anyways, moving on, in the episode, Ben has his daughter killed, and as he sits in the middle of the house in shock, he mutters to himself, “He’s changed the rules,” then goes off and does something that seems inexplicable and downright confusing. I also sat in stunned silence, digesting what had just been uttered. “Who, who changed the rules?” “There are rules here?” “What are the rules?” “Is it a game between Charles Widmore?” “Is this entire island merely a grand chess board between these two titans?”

As the episode progressed, I got more and more excited to find out more and more about these rules. Then the man-eating mysterious gray cloud finally came back, and I realized that Lost had hit its solid stride the first time since the second episode. No more of this sit-around pretentious “what the hell do we do” crap. Now something is actually happening. It’s back to its truly supernatural and near-mythological roots, and what a grand return it is.

This episode throws so many questions into the mix and yet answers so many as well. And I finally figured out for the first time why Jack was pressing Kate to go back to the island at the end of Season 3. Perhaps I’m a little late on the ball with this, but they need to go back TO GET WHO WAS LEFT BEHIND. There are still people on the island. Said asks Ben in this episode, in a flash-forward, “How did you get off the island?” Which means that Ben did not leave with the Oceanic Six – he came by after, and tricked Said into working as an assassin for him. So if Ben is on the island, he can’t be on the island all by himself, there must be other people there.

This episode was absolutely packed with everything that has made Lost great, and everything that Lost has been glaringly lacking for the past several weeks. Broken loyalties, questionable ties, answers to long-sought-after-questions, tantalizingly brief hints of new questions, new people being thrown into the mix, a competent execution of a flash-forward/back. And more than this, Ben has finally changed from a frustratingly inscrutable figure who’s always being told he can’t be trusted and then of course people trust him, to someone with a real past, a daughter, a true pain at his center, and this entirely new secret that it’s all just some kind of game with “rules” and all that. I’m not longer constantly frustrated that the show’s writers seem to be unable to use Ben for anything but a cheap ploy to divide loyalties between the islanders. More often than not, this season he has seemed like the typical “master-villain” who knows absolutely everything but doesn’t tell a soul and only enjoys telling people small bits so they’ll get pissed more. For this season, Ben was no kind of serious character until this episode, and that more than anything marks this episode as a success. We finally know for near-sure that Ben can control the smoke monster, we’re getting more and more indications of the future-time difference between the island and the outside world, and Jack is finally breaking down and showing more than “I’m a tough guy who gets pissed at Ben” side.

The islanders are finally making the outsiders tell them the answers to their questions, people are getting up and moving, and it’s not stagnant anymore. There’s events happening, real events, not just simplistic vignettes into the lives of the people that often have nothing to do with the story (I appreciated the Jin/Sun episode but it didn’t have much relevance to the story at large), there’s no more wasting time by going to a power station to shut it down (woop-dee-doo), and we finally may find out more about Jacob.

I don’t love this show as much as I love The Office or Heroes, but damn, they really do hit the big time now and then. If only every episode could be like this.

On a side note, y’all should check out this video. It’s a youtube video that’s a four minute recap of the first three seasons, and it’s actually pretty funny to hear some of the simple summaries of all the characters. That’s about all for now, later, everybody.

Someone should expel these reviewers

Posted in Movie Buzz with tags , , , , , on April 23, 2008 by Brandon

Here you go. It’s the reviews for Ben Stein’s new movie, and they’re absolutely horrid. But here’s what I find interesting. Remember a little movie called Fahrenheit 9/11? Remember how it liberally distorted facts, used war victims for its own purposes, and showed a pompous parading jackass as the center of it all claiming he was making a fair and balanced documentary? It received something like 89% on rottentomatoes, something which it really did not deserve.

So far, all the mini-blurbs that rottentomatoes has about Expelled could easily be lifted up and stuck onto Fahrenheit 9/11. Isn’t it interesting how when a liberal movie attacks authority, everyone finds it groundbreaking, controversial, and wonderful, but when a conservative movie does the same, people find it close-minded and manipulative. Admittedly, I haven’t seen Expelled (I am planning on it, though), so I can’t fully speak to that, but I’m betting I’ll like it a whole lot more than most of the liberal media will.

I just hate how double standards so glaringly appear when movies with clear biases one way or the other pop up. Right now, if any documentary popped up defending the war in Iraq, no matter how balanced and fair it aimed to be, or maybe how satirical it was of movies attacking the war in Iraq (and as I understand it the format of Stein’s movie is intended as a Satire against Michael Moore “documentaries”), critics would still pan it no matter what. It’s stupid. When I end up being a movie reviewer, I’m not going to let my political bias get in the way of my reviewing things. If Expelled is indeed poorly made I’ll freely admit that, regardless of my conservative ties.

Anyways, that’s about it for now. Later, all.

“Haha! They have accents, and I’m so original for commenting on it!! Aren’t I funny?!?”

Posted in Movie Buzz with tags , on April 20, 2008 by Brandon

I am sick and tired of critics thinking they’re the cleverest thing in the world when they comment on a foreign star’s ability to speak on an English language film. Here are a two excerpts from reviews of The Forbidden Kingdom, a movie that I loved and the review of which will be published on Wednesday in The Falcon. Anyways, moving along:

“…from a local pawn shop run by Old Hop, played by Jackie Chan in old-age prosthetics (apparently Hop is a third-generation American who still struggles with English).”
-Liam Lacey
Globe and Mail

“…English line readings: 75 percent intelligible…”
-Nick Pinkerton
Village Voice

It’s sickening. And it’s always uttered with most glib self-assured tone, as if they’re the smartest person in the world and they’re smirking at themselves for how smart they are for having noticed Li’s or Chan’s broken English. I saw the same problem with Rush Hour 3 reviews, where a LOT more critics talked about it because they didn’t have the legendary Chan/Li team-up to focus on.  If you’re going to write a review of the film, don’t act all cocky just because you can speak perfect English because you’ve grown up with it. Chan has made very few American movies compared with the wide array of Asian films he’s made, so there’s not real reason his accent should have improved, and when you learn English after a certain age, accents don’t really leave without intensive training to make them leave. Stop bitching about something that doesn’t really matter.

In addition to that, I’m sick and tired of how they always reference “wire-fu” and think they’re being incredibly sophisticated or something. Wire-Fu is an art, just as much as normal kung fu is an art. Okay, maybe not just as much, but still. Everyone always acts like it’s a sub-par form of filmmaking, but it’s been part of the martial arts tradition for well over ten years now. They also talk about Yuen Wo-Ping as if he’s merely a “wire-fu” artist, which pisses me off, because they obviously have never seen Young Master, Drunken Master, Drunken Master II, Black Dragon, and dozens of Chan and Li’s old movies to show little to no wire-fu was ever used in those scenes.

It just makes me mad when critics diss something or babble on like they have a clue in the world what they’re talking about, when they really don’t. It only makes them seem more stupid. There was even one reviewer who dissed the idea of the “Monkey King” as some idiotic American fantasy invention, obviously not even having done a morsel of research to realize that this so-called idiotic Monkey King is a long-standing tradition of Hong Kong lore. On top of that, many reviews talk of the Forbidden Kingdom like its storyline is some of travesty to the genre, when anyone who knows the genre well at all knows that it’s a loving homage, through and through, and Rob Minkoff’s direction is outstanding considering he’s never worked on a film like this before.

Anyways, that’s about it for my rant. Moving along.

Is the real Sonic coming back to us…?

Posted in Video Game News with tags , , , on April 14, 2008 by Brandon

This gives me jitters all over when I watch it, I don’t want to hope but I want to hope so so so so so bad. It’s a video of a game that’s set for Q4 2008 release, and that video looks to be like SONIC THE HEDGEHOG BLAZING IN WITH A GAME TO EQUAL THE GREATNESS OF THE ORIGINAL.

Yeah, you heard that right. Ever since the promising beginnings of Sonic Adventure that combined the supersonic speed with the emerging 3D platformer genre, we have not really had anything that came even close to the original. This trailer looks to change all that. They pessimistic side of me tells me to keep my hopes down, bu I’m having a really hard time with that. Like all Sonic fans out there, I want to believe in a new beginning, I really do.

I’m crossing my fingers and hoping that this 2.5D platformer, as they’re calling it, will actually deliver on its huge bucketload of promises. If they don’t, they’ll have a world of Sonic gamers with a hit on their asses.

COME ON, SONIC!

My Brawl review

Posted in Video Game Reviews with tags on April 10, 2008 by Brandon

As promised, here’s the link to my review of Brawl. I loved it. And that’s all I have time for right now.