Logan

To start with, the teaser trailer of Logan with its use of Johnny Cash’s “Hurt” is one of the greatest trailers I ever watched.

The song really set the tone of the film and also set as ever, my expectations with my soft spot to comic book adaptations. Although critically panned, I really liked Mark Millar’s vision for Old Man Logan, because who could resist a post-apocalyptic world with now disfunctional superhero lore? These are my favorite two things ever!

Before that Hugh Jackman teased Old Man Logan in Comic-Con 2015:

Yeah, I watched this in 2015.

I was already in the mood for Mad Max in X-Men Universe. (Dear non-nerds, please be reminded that Fox have X-Men, Marvel Studios have everything else, so direct adaptation of Old Man Logan would not be actually possible for another fucking century).

I always, always love dark and gritty imaginations of things. So much more realistic and gritty movie which barely contains superhero motif will never be problem for me. You are going to make Last of Us with claws? You are remaking Mad Max with a really two 100 year old dudes along with a preteen girl as a road liability?

Yup! Logan in its second half decides to turn into Mad Max Fury Road with a sad road trip, as Logan and the gang drives to the Canada to find Eden, a place where X-23 (Laura) kind can live as free mutants. Y’know, that serene and perfect land Furiosa remembers from her childhood. The Green Place. Then the film immediately turns into another Mad Max movie. Beyond Thunderdome. Because little kids and their reluctant crazy protector.

In addition the entire Anti-Trump propaganda shoehorned in Mexica Texas border and uber driver Logan (instead of a horse, yeah this is a western, blink blink. Real MEN mounts on top of bigger things, blink blink.) We do not get any other themes other than being old sucks and being 130+ years old gets boring after everyone you ever met is dead. We know being old sucks. Well, being 30 years old sucks, let alone to be born in 1886.

I can cynically refer to Stephen Spielberg: “We were around when the Western died and there will be a time when the superhero movie goes the way of the Western.” Now comic book films are mimicking Sergio Leone’s nihilistic westerns which most of us has no nostalgia connection and a quick reminder for they are not going to slow down at least until 2030. I even think we are going to get a Hugh Jackman in yellow spandex for the next Deadpool movie despite all the denials. Make people go to the theatre to make them bid their farewells and later make Hugh Jackman to piss it on with a parody while making them happy with the yellow spandex. What a lovely twist!

Logan is simply not one of the greatest comic-book movies of all time in my opinion, despite the overwhelmingly positive buzz. I can accept that it is a forcefully melancholic but a proper send-off for a dude I am watching on screen from the age of 12 but it is not really that much of a masterpiece.

Then again even when vaguely adapting Old Man Logan how can you miss the suspense to not have him snikt for 2/3’s of the movie? The film immediately starts with Logan slicing and dicing people for fuck’s sake.

JUST HOW..

..YOU CAN..

..MISS THIS?

The setting, bleak no-hope apocalyptic attitude and the R-rated grittiness (fights were really awesome though) was deserving something to end on a higher note than on the nose metaphor for his on his prime beast of a youth vs. his old potato current self. Wolverine vs. Wolverine Clone finale could vastly be improved with a mere inclusion of Sabretooth instead of a boring and gimmicky CGI clone. Please stop comparing this to the Dark Knight. Even Max Payne 3 tried to do this old and weary thing in Rio.

La La Land

Our generation is only aware of some of the MGM Classics though we always hear about all of them, all the time. Did you ever actually tried to watch one of them?

Their slow paces, non-existent CGI technology and old weird colors? Awww, you really have to at least watch some of them because they are milestones of the world heritage, right? Old movies are important! So, the regular folks cannot pass 30 minutes of Lawrance of Arabia and only being forced to watch Citizen Kane because someone is discreetly patronizing them to show how much they are better than them (or actually like that old movie but they are like the privileged ones, one percenters.)

So, when you are hearing out how La La Land is a love letter to the old time classics, you are probably ashamedly nodding your head like yeah they better be like this while having no idea what a classical film actually is supposed to be.

La La Land is what it says on itself as “How are you gonna be a revolutionary if you’re such a traditionalist? You hold onto the past, but jazz is about the future.” This film is by no means revolutionary but while it is not claiming that, the entire mixing jazz with modern stuff directly applies to itself. A classic film with cell phones! Modern problems! Relatively more updated storytelling!

I asked to myself is this a periodical piece within ten minutes of this film. It sure started like a 60’s film but all the contents are about modern life. This is why a romantic musical ended up very intriguing for me. Emma Stone, as gorgeous as ever, is not a classical lead. Yes, she has the largest, best eyes in entire Hollywood and she has screen presence and charisma of a goddess but her raspy voice, her weird mannerisms are not typical, especially considering when Ryan Gosling was floating like a handsome swan and I pretty much guess this is the point. (Then again, as soon as I started to read reviews, no one actually mentioned this.) Welcome to late 2010’s, the lead girl awkwardly laughs like a boy during the best song in the musical and it is counted as a heart warming moment, the chain-smoking wife-beating leading men are extinct. Weird mannerisms and stupid reactions are hot and just like how you do it. Yeah, I cannot imagine I would love this film this much if Emma Watson was in the lead. She would be another cold, mandatory-feminist, obligatory-environmentalist, soulless robot for this role. Did I mention I love every little gesture of Emma Stone and declared she would be best Holywood star to play video games with in 2007? It is so easy to imagine her to curse around and kick your ass on some PS4 game. That feels genuine.

Okay, the theme of the film was entirely classical. Easily, it’s like Nolan films, what you do is more important than what you feel. Remember Batman Begins’ “It’s not who you are underneath, it’s what you do that defines you” quote or entire plot of Inception yelling at you distractions are (mostly women) distracting you from what is holy, thy name is WORK? (and you can argue he did nothing wrong, he supported her from scratch and he could not watch her performance because of work, so work is the greatest excuse ever and she was not keen on her work or you can take side with her and talk about importance of that one woman play.)

While there are not too much songs that you can memorize as you would in a typical musical, (Sweeney Todd’s Epiphany, Nine’s Guido, Be Italian, Les Misérables’ pretty much entire first half, whatever Moulin Rouge covered, etc.) I am currently having City of Stars as my ring  tone like every other oh-so-romantic girl and still humming that earworm of a melody.

This works, because you get to question their love, would they be poor (while they both still struggling to open a bar or become an actress) and happy or if achieving all of their goals would make them eternally happy in the end. When they are not happily singing songs together, no one ever dances around and I love this film because of it.

It feels more romantic and genuine with all its character flaws than every stupid rom-com I have ever watched in my entire life.

Rogue One: A Star Wars Story

I never wanted to say anything about Force Awakens because by the time I could even write one word; every single comment and every single joke imaginable was already on the internet and your opinion would not matter at all. Call it a nostalgia factor for generations or sheer excitement after waiting to see a lightsaber on screen for the last ten years; everyone was satisfied when they finally get to see it again, even if it is essentially a remake of the old one.

No one is really excited for Rogue One merely one year later of this. Not to mention bad press regarding reshoots and the feel that we will be watching a lot of these for the next decade.

It is the first time ever that I think annualized series are killing the excitement of a brand name. Sure, I like my annual Saw series and Assassin’s Creed video game series but they do not have first class worldwide social and cultural event vibe like the title Star Wars. When you are playing with the ultimate golden standard of nerd culture which is pretty much popular culture now, it should make us feel something.

I felt nothing. Zero immersion. From the opening with child Jyn Erso, save for the last five minutes which I actually cheered happily, I blankly stared at the screen while this structured mess unfolding its events in the most boring linear way possible while hating the darkness of 3D, hating where I was watching it, hating the other viewers making stupid comments throughout the film while being completely aware of my surroundings.

This is quite saddening because I always like the idea of dark and gritty versions things we already like. The idea of ground level dirty Star Wars “war” movie with a clear goal is still appealing to me even if I hated this one. However, this does not feel like a war movie or a team-up movie where the team is not really a solid team and you cannot make any emotional connection with any of the cast. I still have no idea who the turncoat imperial pilot was.

In addition, we do not have any background information on our lead for thirteen years and we do not know her character at all as she automatically executes her tasks to the new check point. Her romantic interest only targets a gun at her father at some point and his entire act is done after that scene, he becomes a background extra. Chinese guys lack the presence and charisma and both of them are extremely one dimensional: one tank with a big gun and one blind magic guy with a stick. Even the robot that should be the highlight of the film and fan favorite for all ages feels forced. (We saw the toys of him in everywhere for the last two months.)

Jyn’s heroic speech before third act felt so obligatory that even she looked like she does not belive in what she is saying. I continued to stare blankly at the screen without feeling anything while wondering about Kyle Katarn whether if I could play Star Wars: Dark Forces, a video game that is 21 years old also depicts Katarn single-handedly stealing the plans for the first Death Star in the first act of the game, at this weekend.

Darth Vader was misused in this film. His half assed opening scene with rehash of his choke powers was again a merely note to hit and though I liked his slaughter of rebel scums in the last five minutes, screaming loudly about how badass the world’s respectively biggest villain in the film history (American Film Institute says Hannibal Lecter and Norman Bates are better than him but pffffs.) is like boasting to elementary school students who are struggling to learn reading to how you have read a book that is 1500 pages one time in your life. Darth Vader was already menacing when he was slowly touching sabers with Obi-Wan.

The best idea of this film is the retcon of the Death Star that took two decades to complete to have a major fault as an exhaust pipe that leads directly into the main power generator because the creator was a good guy and the entire film is only good for retconning a stupid plot hole.

I do not think I can be excited for “A Star Wars Story” MEGA FRANCHISE series if the upcoming Han Solo prequel will be as soulless as this in 2018. That being said, I am still genuinely excited for Rian Johnson’s Episode VIII.

#Update What about Mary-Jane Watson?

1402838651_974444530Blah blah I have not been posting since forever, I have mixed feelings regarding both Batman v. Superman and Suicide Squad, 2016 was a mixed year for the films and I have watched only 16 films in entire year and ugh, whatevs. I need to geek out for a moment.

How about a black girl being cast as the whitest redheaded supermodel in upcoming Spider-Man: Homecoming film? Ugh, this is racist. No, I am not against black people getting the roles of comic book characters that are traditionally white because back in 60’s even showing a white man kissing a black woman was subject of controversy (Star Trek did it first) and all important people are talking about how if the character is not defined by race, the race does not matter if you are showing the traits of the characters well. (Which roughly translates to Luke Cage being black is mandatory, Black Panther being black is mandatory. Useless sidekicks can be of any race. If you could have cast someone yellow and go with someone white people will get angry [Some kung-fu chick in Dr. Strange is being played by Tilda Swinton, the whitest scariest woman ever] and basically you cannot recast minorities and cast white people as anything) I mean, who cares Deadshot being a black guy or a white guy. He is a dude who is shooting very good. the great, late Michael Duncan Clarke was perfect as Kingpin and I remember his mannerisms today as a definitive Kingpin (Well because I might not seen Kingpin since 2003.  Does Marvel prints anything that is small scaled anymore? I think all they do nowadays. Do not get me started with Civil War II)

Back to point.

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Not bitchy and super-model looking enough.

Since Raimi’s and Webb’s Spider-Man movies are relics of past and while Raimi’s trilogy is somewhat being held like a gold classics (again because we were the targeted audience back when it was fucking 2002.) and Webb’s two films were something we pity now. 2017’s Spider-Man: Homecoming (Gawd, I love the name! Even the name is stating what I am about to say) should be the best Spider-Man film ever produced. If it is not poisoned with all the future Marvel film adverts, obligatory Tony Stark extended cameo, look here’s one of the gems of infinity stones bullshit and “here’s Captain Marvel in regular street clothes, please watch our film!” type of even more extended brand advertising and being somewhat of a stand alone film, I thought Spider-Man films coming back to home (GET IT? GET IT NOW?) and what is the first thing that gathers public attention? A black girl being Mary-Jane Watson. Who is a fap material of pimply nerds since 1965. Now when you could make the perfect Spider-Man movie (which in my mind closely resembles 1994’s Spider-Man Animated Series because these kinds of things only the world’s greatest thing when you are a fucking child and no amount of Peter Pan syndrome will bring the good memories of your childhood back but we do not dwell on the past and like updated things with a hint of nostalgia anyway. Pokémon Go anyone?)

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Bitchy looking enough. However, not the Mary Jane we deserve.

This is new Mary Jane. (Also this is an old picture, she is not a redhead now.) Okay, I said updating shit is cool. I always like a new spin on classical things I usually I end up loving covers of songs more then the originals but why the heck we get a ghetto urban girl as Mary Jane?

Okay, just leave her out and actually include a new character called Michele. We would like that. Then incorporate that character to comics (Only to give her superpowers much later which would not stick) and everyone will be happy.

You want to troll the audience and have that counted as fan service? Add a real redhead called Mary Jane and only have 20 seconds of screen time to show how the times change. I mean, new Iron-Man is a 16 year old black girl who is written by a white dude and this is progression. Captain America is ex-Captain America sidekick who is written by a white dude and this is progression. New Thor is a girl who is written by a white dud– let me fact check for a second. Hurm, some dude and the writer is called Jason Aaron, yass– eee and this is progression. Stuff like this makes me want to grow up.

#film American Ultra

 

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People hate the fuck out of Max Landis.  (He also knows this very well; look at this direct quote from his personal blog: “but there’s another side to me that I don’t quite understand yet, and that’s that, for my entire life, people have really hated me. and if it helps look at the comments at jezebel (click here: http://jezebel.com/screenwriter-bro-just-might-be-hollywoods-biggest-fuck-1440597536) and I, for numerous reasons love him. I first encountered his Death and Return of Superman video (it’s pretty much my favorite internet video with fuckload of celebrity cameos to this date, maybe except Jimmy Kimmel’s I’m fucking Ben Affleck one)

Watch this:

I also love Chronicle, which is also written by Max Landis. (It’s kinda sad that Josh Trank kicked out of his Star Wars project and his Fantastic Four is worst fucking comic book adaption ever) and all his casual movie pitches usually sounds amazing. His take on Supes, his take on FF and so on. Listening him talking about a pitch for an hour is fun. American Ultra? All I knew about this film was Max Landis wrote it. I never bothered to check its trailers, all I know about this film was Jessie Eisenberg is playing it while having Max Landis’ haircut.

So what is American Ultra? It is Bourne meets Chuck. Some stoner idiot is together with some gorgeous babe (Kristen Stewart) he smokes weed and panic attacks the fuck out of everything. Then CIA activates his powers and he beats the fuck out of everything. This is what you’re going to get.

But why did I like it? Because you can almost see Max Landis is explaining the shit to you like; “LOOK AT THIS NOW HE’S GOING TO USE SHOVE THIS SPOON TO THIS GUY’S THROAT AND CLICK HE BROKE THE OTHER GUY’S NECK” while watching the film. All the cool scenes exactly plays out like some overly excited teenage guy is pitching you the idea of their cool sleeper agent film.  Like just as what I was praising him for before. Also, Kristen Stewart looks gorgeous as a fucked up stoner babe. I find joy watching universally disliked pretty girl in a script written by universally disliked smart guy. So I am more than sure not everyone will like this or even bother to watch it. For that matter, our theatre was pretty much empty while it was its first day of showing. Eh, I liked it.

#Film Avengers: Age of Ultron

landscape-1429550012-avengers-2-age-of-ultronIs it not weird that we are taking everything for granted, in a blink of an eye? 4 years ago we could not even imagine to see one of the two most popular super-heroes kicking each other’s ass as mainstream entertainment; now we’re watching a promotional Iron Man and Hulk punch out contest on our tiny little phones (it was only a little bit extended in the film) and bicker about Batman and Superman cynically. Yeah, we are sooo taking everything for granted that Avengers: Age of Ultron feels… We already have watched the entire damn thing at least a dozen times.

This was my first criticism as soon as the post credits began to roll and my friends were like “you really should not have watched every promotion, every trailer and read every news”. But what I am trying to say is that the genre fatigue is setting in; comic book adaptations are on a 4-films-a-year basis and this, as the admiral ship, should have offered something more different.

This is an action movie which I had more fun with dialogues. Joss Whedon’s uncanny ability to write an ensemble shines so well that when they are in a room talking about stuff it is far more enjoyable than anything in Michael Bay territory of blowing CGI shit up everywhere. The one-liners and banters are priceless. However, they make you feel like there are not any stakes because even if a fucking moon sized meteor was coming to earth in a rush, you are sure first one who sees it is going to make a joke about it. Then again I am not bashing the film because of the less risk they have taken this time around. Ultron is a good villain and his sarcastic tone throughout the film really makes you want to hear him more even if you were baffled like “waitaminute, why is he a bad robot now?” since he was rushing to become Terminator just mere seconds after he was born. Dealing with raw emotions is harder for this generation’s robots I guess.

Uh, and I was expecting something less systematic. Comic book nerds know where Wakanda is, nerds also knew Gollum is playing the Klaw and Black Panther’s main baddie is revealed as a plot point in this film but we already knew everything and showing the gems in a dream sequence at this point is not throwing us a bone here. Heroes trying to do heroic thing and trying to save all civilians in this godforsaken Russian city is a neat thing to watch but all internets are trying to win upper hand with “we Marvel love our citizens and try to save them from harm. Superman did not in Man of Steel. Hehe.” Come on. It is easier when there is a dozen of you to save civilians while Thor or Vision is in punching contest with Ultron.

Nothing was ever surprising, except Hawkeye has a family and he does not want to bang Scarlett’s Black Widow. Were they not flirting in the first film, so much that there was a speculation of a Black Widow & Hawkeye film? Nope, this is not the case from now on, because Black Widow is AUNTIE NAT. Hawkeye’s poor little pregnant wife with two children does not bat an eye when he stops by at the house to get some more arrows because there are ten more robots (out of two thousand) that he can kill. She’s not jealous of the hottest Russian girl hanging around too. Best wife ever!

As for other heroes; poor Captain America is a side character who is throwing his bike to people and generally being sad about his forever-alone status. Also, Black Widow was flirting with him in his last solo film but now he has to give advice to Hulk because no one wants to bang Black Widow. HULK FLY AWAY NOT TO BANG BLACK WIDOW!! REDHEAD RUSSIAN MAKES HULK UNCOMFORTABLE! Better Olsen was hot even with a horrible Russian accent. Quicksilver was just there to run around without any real impact. (Also, we have seen before our eyes that X-Men: Days of Future Past Quicksilver scene cannot be improved. If you wanna see it (again?) here’s the link). By the way, did not Iron Man quit being Iron Man at the end of Iron Man 3? When did he build a very shiny (but very same) armor for the 43rd time? (This is not a joke, the suit is literally called Mark XLIII)

The sad thing is, now Whedon is tapped out and the following Avengers films will end up with even more CGI and action and space fighting and more characters from every single film ever and the glue, the heart and basically ERRYYTHING, especially the good dialogue and characterizations will not be there. Eh, maybe one or two real Avengers will die next time to prove the next villain is somewhat a threat.

#Update The Joker

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Oh guess what? Something DC posted again caused so much stir. Again. To celebrate the 75th anniversary of The Joker, Suicide Squad director David Ayer has revealed the first official image of Jared Leto as The Joker. Who does not look like neither Batman The Animated Series Joker nor The Batman Joker.

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Also not The Killing Joke Joker, Not beating the hell out of Jason Todd Joker or current New 52 Joker (his face was cut off for a while)

KillingJoke1417784_orig (1) v9sjDtfbyktEA6Oh noes, new Joker also does not look like The Man who Laughs (Victor Hugo’s novel adaptation from 1928 that inspired the character. DID YOU KNOW VICTOR HUGO WAS INDIRECTLY INVOLVED IN CREATING THE JOKER?)

The_Man_Who_Laughs_1928_3-600x450Do you get what i am trying to get at now? Every incarnation of Joker is different. Sure we all would rather see stories and exact characters of Batman The Animated Series over and over again because it was our childhood but some kids knew Joker from Batman: The Brave and The Bold (who has a look and feel akin to his silver age incarnation from 1970’s).

RivalSo, when we are getting Die Antwoord Ninja/Riff Raff/Alien from Spring Breakers Joker in a promo pic, this is fine. we are going to see him in a suit, we are going to see him doing what Joker usually does. He looks even more menacing than Heath Ledger’s Joker already.

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I am on board with this Joker and if how he looks does not throw you off, something is wrong, something is not crazy enough and Leto’s Joker is already crazy and unsettling enough. Stop bickering.

 

#Update #Films Watch all the trailers!

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Since it’s been forever since I have posted, here’s all the internet lately and my sincere opinions of them. (Sincere: we bought a customized lightsaber on my birthday after careful examination and I am still only out of meh -level of excitement for the new Star Wars film.) Also while I am in somewhat negative tone for all the trailers below (except Mad Max and that damn awesome Avengers clip) they all are obvious FIRST DAY- FIRST IN THE LINE viewings for me, bitter cynical tone is a side effect of growing up I guess.

Number 8 – Terminator Genisys

I remember watching Terminator Salvation twice back in 2009 (because I was a little bit intoxicated at first time, also Christian Bale.) Not really exciting even with the plot twist (spoiled in the trailer above) actually looks really risky and daring.  Poor franchise. Can James Cameron get the rights back at some point?

Number 7 – Fantastic Four

Chronicle was the most surprisingly accomplished comic book film of the 2012 in competition with Batman, Avengers, Spider-Man and Ghost Rider (lol) despite its indie, hipster extravaganza while not being an actual comic book adaptation.  For this reason only, I am giving Fantastic Four more chance than it actually deserve. First trailer was really looking like Interstellar sequel and this one feels kind of odd, but Kate Mara is gorgeous, I love the Whiplash dude and yeah.. Let’s see if this is going to suck or not.

Number  6 – Ant Man

Not that there is anything wrong with it but this one looks a little bit generic, silly but fun action flick. Even the trailer is looking like every superhero cliche ever is crammed into one film but we are talking about Ant-Man in a world we never saw comic-book accurate Aquaman. (and will not for the next six to ten years)

Number  5 – Jurassic World

I really want to like this. Call it nostalgia (when I saw the trailer on screen with my friends none of them were amused or excited) or my early fascination with dinosaurs like every other normal seven year old kid, somehow I want this not to be a total disaster. Also, I do not want to see people get bored from Chris Pratt this quickly. (You may want to burn Jennifer Lawrance on a stick and I am totally okay with that)

Number 4 – Star Wars: The Force Awakens

A few years ago, we made it through a six film Star Wars marathon in numbers order. By the time film six, we were feeling we had enough Star Wars for a life time. Now we are going to get yearly Star Wars releases and the first big one really does not do the trick for me. I am more excited for Rian Johnson’s (Looper, anyone?) Episode VIII.

Number 3 – Avengers: Age of Ultron clip

This looks awesome. Only ten days left.

Number 2 – Mad Max: Fury Road

Whenever I get the chance I praise how I love post-apocalyptic stuff  or Fallout games. This is the granddaddy of everything post-apocalypse. The trailer looks perfect. Tom Hardy is a great choice. George Miller’s vision is finally on screen without EVERYTHING CGI. For 2015, this is my most anticipated film.

Number 1 – Batman v. Superman: Dawn of Justice

Shut up. It’s Batman. I know how depressing is the trailer. I know we, DC is trying to separate our films from Marvel by doing them dark dark dark brooding brooding brooding and SAD. It’s the greatest comic book accurate Batman we ever going to see. Justice League is coming. Tell me, do you bleed?

#Film Exodus: Gods and Kings

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When the Pharaoh saw all these Israelites living in Egypt, he thought, “Holy shit! We’ve got an illegal alien problem.”

So the Pharaoh enslaved God’s chosen people and put them to work picking green beans, framing houses and things like that. Not wanting her son to grow up as a slave, one lady put her baby in straw basket and released it into the Nile River. The Pharaoh’s daughter stumbled upon the basket while she was out swimming. She later adopted the boy and named him Moses. 

As Moses grew up, he went to the best schools, ate the best food, played with the best dogs, and generally lived the good life. All of which was built upon the misery of an army of slaves. But then one day he learned the awful truth: he wasn’t a blue-blooded Egyptian at all. In fact, he was the son of illegal aliens. Having learned of how he came to be in the Pharaoh’s family, it occurred to Moses that the only thing that separated him from the slaves being whipped outside the palace was a basket ride. This realization caused an existential crisis in Moses. He turned his back on his adopted family, his country club and all his yuppie friends, and went into the desert to sort things out. 

While in the desert, God appeared to Moses in the form of a burning bush and told him to go free his fellow Israelites from slavery. When a flaming shrub tells you to do something, you do it. 

Moses returned to Egypt, demanding the release of all the Israelite slaves. The Pharaoh thought his radicalized grandson was just going through a phase. That if he just held out long enough, Moses would shave off his beard and the Che Guevara poster would come down off the wall, and everything would go back to normal. But Moses was serious, and so was God, a point he drove home by turning the Nile River into blood, creating swarms of frogs and giving everyone skin boils. In light of these horrors, the Pharaoh offered to let the Israelites go, but only if they left their cattle and sheep behind. This wasn’t good enough for Moses, as he knew this meant a future without jerky or leather furniture. So to raise the stakes, Moses summoned the Angel of Death. 

That night, the Israelites covered their door frames with lamb’s blood, so the Angel of Death would know to pass over their house and to move on to the neighbors, where he would kill their first-born son. This where the Jewish Feast of Passover comes from.

The Israelites got to keep their sheep and cattle. And they got to leave Egypt. God told Moses to take his people into the desert and await further instructions.

The Egyptians had made running a government look easy, but Moses quickly learned that it’s actually kind of a grind, especially when you’re leading a nation of people on what is going to be a 40-year nature hike. 

There was simply no way Moses could be everywhere to make sure nobody killed anyone else, stole their food, screwed their wife, or ate something that made them sick. And even when he could catch someone in the act, there wasn’t much he could do about it. You can’t exactly put someone in jail when you’re marching ten miles a day.

Moses did his best to keep order, but people kept getting sick, fights would break out and people were so fed up with the situation that they threatened to leave and go back to Egypt. For a while, it looked as if in the midst of all this crime and chaos that the tribes of Israel might simply dissolve and everyone would go their separate ways. 

Moses wracked his brain for ways to keep his nation of hikers together. Finally, God decided to help Moses out. He called him up to the top of Mount Sinai and gave him a bunch of stone tablets. “Be sure to tell everyone that these are coming from me.” God told him. “If they follow these laws, I’ll always be there to watch over them,” God said. “That’s the deal.” To commemorate his deal with the people of Israel, God told Moses to build the Ark of the Covenant, a gold trunk decorated with angels. Inside the trunk, they kept the Ten Commandments and some other mementos. They also built a Mercy Seat, a little seat on top of the ark so that when he came down from Heaven, God could ride around on top and kill people as they carried the ark with them. 

After a few days, Moses came back down the mountain with a bunch of laws, and unlike the rules he’d tried to lay down, these laws, he told them, were given to him personally by God. A gasp went up from the crowd. This was serious poker. People were far more worried about disobeying God who, unlike  Moses, actually could be everywhere at once. So they cut down on cheating, robbing, and killing each other and generally cleaned up their act.

The nation of hikers was saved.

This fine little story (aside from Torah of course) is from God Is Disappointed in You by Mark Russell & Shannon Wheeler which  is for people who would like to read the Bible…if it would just cut to the chase. So, for a film quite literally depicts how the actual holy book is written with minor to no changes, anything I am going to say about the script shall make me impious. (You know, I reeeeeallly care about that stuff) Well, god is indeed an angry dude, in this case. A child. What did I think about a film almost everyone scowls at?

Pacing is pretty much all over the place. Semi-realism is kinda fun to aim at but also kills the epic feeling. Christian Bale is badass as usual but you wonder why the heck he is both Jesus and Moses now. Can he take a shot at Mohammad too? Would Arman be satisfied if jihadjihadmohammadjihadallahackbar ISIS dudes kills Bale of? (Editor’s note: No. But he should quit acting. OR ELSE!…)

Seriously, the only thing left to be said is how unmemorable the film was. I loved how they cared about hairstyles and accessorizes of Egyptian masses but I really would like to watch another real Egyptian themed film instead of this. That triangle haired chick was hot.

(Final words: Assassin’s Creed lore states that Moses’ staff was, in reality, a Staff of Eden, which he used to free the Israelites from the Egyptian rule and to part the Red Sea. Moses was also the first known member of humanity to possess a Staff of Eden. This film did not have any staff. I can only think by Assassin’s Creed terms. My “testament” on Unity is coming after I finish Paris Stories.)

#Film Interstellar

-98caac85-f5ed-419a-8a2e-672a10473ea3As I try to go and watch films weekly, I’m actually not picky at all. You know what I needed to know to watch Fury? Brad Pitt and a tank. Why am I going to watch John Wick? Because Keanu Reeves is shooting people. So, I usually have the expectation of a 45 year old single dad in terms of hype. But then I get excited for some films. Quite a few ones are actually personal, like a form of religious service.

We’re talking about Christopher Nolan here. If I’m invested in a film like I’m actually a part of it, he’s the most divine one. So, I was hyped. I remember when I left the theatre after seeing Inception in 2010, all I ever wanted was to watch it again. So, I left nothing to chance. I arranged to see two screenings on the first Saturday (Friday was not available for the reasons I don’t want to discuss).

Uhm, what happened? “Once you’re a parent, you’re the ghost of your children’s future.” Once you were a kid, you thought space was the coolest. (Watch this animation and be sad for how much you’re getting old). I was expecting the ultimate space film to end all space films. I was expecting the coldest, meanest, smartest film yet. I love how you feel smart when you “get” Nolan’s plot points. I can argue how on Prestige Hugh Jackman lied about being cloned and that you’re a fucking idiot if you disagree with it. I wanted some ambiguity and some spectacular new planets; because I would kill to be able to create something like Inception’s limbo. I wanted this to be the coldest. Because space should be huge, soulless and cold, right? Yeah, even the Time article stated that Nolan is emotionally cold. He is a guy who is never seen without a suit and a tie. He shoots his films all buttoned-up. Well, he says “it’s a habit he adopted out of respect for the crew” but he also doesn’t use a cell phone, you can’t just e-mail him about stuff. Just to read; Jessica Chastain got her script watermarked with her name. She wasn’t allowed to keep the script after she read it.

Then again, what we have here is an essentially a Steven Spielberg film. You know, to quote moviebob, Nolan films are all about hyper-masculine view on emotion versus reason. Rigid stoic professionalism is the highest possible virtue and heroes who embody that virtue are brought down by the interference of emotional response. It was the plot of Inception. It was the Dark Knight trilogy. It’s not the point here. It’s like someone dared Nolan to feel something and make a movie about parenthood and cute hipster stuff; and Nolan, ever the robot and one of the greatest geniuses of our time, accepted the dare and made a film about love. I sarcastically laughed at every single “love conquers all” reference.

At the hands of Spielberg it would be so much different. (Again, do not presume that the reason of my bitterness for this film is because it was weak. It just wasn’t what I expected. My eyes were almost teary on the 23 year gap stuff. Arman actually DID cry.) But there are fifteen differences:-Instead of Dr. Mann showing up and yelling MATT DAMON! MATT DAMON! MATT DAMON! and MATT DAMON! (I thought he was Mark Wahlberg first and was immediately puzzled, also, do you need a link for this reference?) at us, there are aliens and bad robots. I’m quite serious. Cooper finds a dusty Chinese base camp on the planet so the Chinese had already discovered the ice planet 30 years prior with a 4 man crew & 15 robots. Nolan probably hates every depiction of aliens (except for the Alien series) and the last Indy film anyway. The original story loses the emotional connection between the father & daughter and instead it explores much more fully the relationship of Cooper & Brand as it grows. So, I don’t know what to say, Nolan can’t handle that yuck girl and boy relationship stuff but tries something even more fundamentally about love itself? I’m confused. They also find a laboratory containing a machine, which when turned on reverses the gravity inside the room and we’re relieved from Half Life 3 confirmed jokes.

We have a well-settled and dignified space drama. I don’t think it can get any smarter than this without being a documentary. Even the dust bowl survivors at the beginning were real. They weren’t actors at all. They lived through the real dust bowl of 1930’s. Nolan actually said “We could not in the film make it as bad as it really was or people wouldn’t believe it”. (Here’s hoping for a post-apocalyptic Nolan film. Something darker than Mad Max.) So in terms of realism, we know he worked with a cosmologist. I liked all glamorous space shots (more than that overrated Quick Time Events the Movie) and we did all our homework about space ye’ dimwits! expositions but nevertheless I was expecting Inception: Space Boogaloo. Also, six dudes leaving the theater claimed the film was not realistic because Cooper never ate or drink something in space and never visited a bathroom. I wasn’t this enraged at probable low points of human mental capacity in quite a while.

I’m adding this just to be sure we’re at the same page: I watched Inception five times, The Dark Knight Rises five times and The Dark Knight six times at the theatre. (Not counting watching at home).

Interstellar will only have three viewings and sometimes, you can’t make a Nolan film with Nolan.