Archive for the ‘TV’ Category

Short People Will Rule the World

chibi After a kick in the pants from Graphic Content’s Graphic Comic Week I decided it was about time I learn how to draw manga. I’d been meaning to for weeks, inspired by the anime Miles and I watch (mostly by School Rumble) but just was downright lazy. So I checked out four books from the library to assist me in this endeavor and got started. I did a step-by-step of a chibi (cutesy short person!) to start off. She’s just so cuuuuuute! But, again, it was step-by-step so it’s hard to screw up. Though, I did use some artistic liberties in the fact that I gave her a headband. Go me!

I had supergrand ideas that I know many of you would have loved. I was going to create a scene from LOST using¬† season one characters in the chibi style. I quickly realized that it would not happen (over the weekend, at least.) Have you noticed…nothing really defines the characters in their wardrobe? There are a couple I could do things with, like Claire (pregnant) but she wasn’t in the scene I wanted to draw and Charlie (hoodie, guitar). Nothing really defines anyone else and so in my head, I figured it would just look like a bunch of short people standing around and one person has a guitar. Nothing too grand there. So for now, that’s on hold, but I might pick it up again in the future and give it a real go. Before I decided it was a flop, I drew two characters (actually three, but Hurley was a FAILure).

sawyer kate

Sawyer – angry, and in chibi style. And Kate, not angry, but in handcuffs and human person style. See what I mean? If I didn’t tell you who they were, or that they were from LOST, you wouldn’t have been able to guess it yourself.

I guess I’ve got my work cut out for me.

And hey! I see Graphic Content has posted my submission to them while I have been writing this post!

The Other Boleyn Girl

The Movie Club tried to use Video On Demand to watch The Other Boleyn Girl, but since it wasn’t a part of the list, we rented it on Blu-Ray. I was highly disappointed by this movie. I was expecting it to be comparable to The Tudors (of which, I’ve only seen the first few episodes). Miles thinks it was mostly the direction. He’s probably right.

There were so many times where I thought, “What? That doesn’t even make sense!” If you’re pulled out of the movie in this way, it’s never a good sign – and it happened multiple times. So many things unexplained and characters would do things that just didn’t make sense for the way they had set them up. Even though you probably know how it all ends, I don’t want to go into specifics of this because of spoilers.

I couldn’t hear anything that was said because everything was spoken in a whisper, no matter how loud the TV was.

Ever since this SNL digital short, (offensive language/suggestion used) I can’t help but thoroughly enjoy Natalie Portman – even though I didn’t enjoy the way her character was portrayed in certain parts of the movie (again, probably a reflection of the direction). Eric Bana and Scarlett Johansson did probably as best as they could. But the intensity of the passion and scandals weren’t as intense as I felt it should have been and when any of the characters were convicted wrongly at trial, or at even if convicted justly, I didn’t feel bad for them. The whole movie left me feeling … *blah*. Miles asked me, three hours later, what I thought of it and it took several moments to even remember what we had seen. It left no impression.

I *did* enjoy one thing from the movie. The exterior establishing shots. They were of buildings and villages in a style I tend to fall in love with – high contrast with a hint of a goldish hue. If the rest of the movie had been in this same style, I would have had something to be interested in.

It was a movie based on historical events and it could have been better. I have such a bland feeling toward it that I don’t know how to rate it, but just for the sake of rating, I give The Other Boleyn Girl a 2 out of 5 stars.

Watch The Tudors instead – it’s about most of the same characters.

Edit 07/11/08, 8:45PM: Miles has reminded me the reason why we didn’t continue watching The Tudors was because what we saw contained a surprising amount of partial nudity; it is rated Mature.¬† The Other Boleyn Girl did not have nudity; it is rated PG-13.

Charlie Wilson’s War

I need to start this off by saying, “I heart Aaron Sorkin’s TV shows” and I’ve seen every episode of all of them. Because I’ve only seen two of his movies, I can only say, “I heart one of Aaron Sorkin’s movies”. And that one movie I heart, does not share its title with this post.

Maybe I was expecting too much. Maybe I wanted the fast-paced, witty exchanges between characters. Or maybe it was too fast that I missed everything important. Maybe I wanted more character development. Or maybe I had enough character development and didn’t care for the characters. Luckily, the characters were based upon real people. So it’s not like he came up with their personalities on his own and made them boring. In fact, I’d be willing to bet that maybe any interesting thing about these characters I viewed, Sorkin developed and the events didn’t really happen. Maybe I wanted less lingering shots of women’s butts. Maybe I’m just jealous.

Maybe I expected the war scenes’ visual effects to at least not look like helicopters were shooting lasers instead of bullets – maybe I should have expected it to look like Star Wars instead. Maybe I should be less critical and not expect great effects from a movie that isn’t focused on the action. Maybe the story should have been more interesting and I wouldn’t care about the useless visual effects being sub-par. Maybe I *am* glad that there were a few funny Sorkin-esque moments between characters. Maybe I wish there were more. Maybe I’m longing for Bradley Whitford to show up and save the movie. Maybe he never comes. Maybe no “Sorkin normals” show up to save the movie. Maybe I’m still pissed that Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip got canceled. That’s probably it.

Maybe I could have witnessed Philip Seymour Hoffman’s great performance, I kept hearing about – if only I could understand a word he was saying. Maybe I still liked him even though he was talking gibberish. Maybe Julia Roberts could have finally won me over. Probably not. Maybe Tom Hanks did a pretty decent job.

Maybe I felt lost throughout the whole movie. Maybe I didn’t *want* to understand. Maybe I needed subtitles on.

Or maybe I’ll just give this movie 3 out of 5 stars.

Maybe I should wait to post this until morning. Maybe I should sleep on it. Maybe I’ll get rid of some maybes if I wait until tomorrow. But maybe I’d add more. Maybe, I’ll do what I want. It’s my blog, after all.

The Incredible Hulk

The Movie Club decided to see The Hulk on Friday. (This does not replace TMC’s Tuesday meeting.) We were invited, via Twitter , by a former L&S intern and friend of Miles’s (internet friend of mine), Mike Billeter . Since The Movie Club was going to see it anyway, we decided to attend. It’s probably best we saw it with him (and another L&S coworker, Wade) because he’s way into comics. At least, he has been since I’ve known him. (That’s a joke, he has been a comic nerd for much longer.) And he explained a lot of things and kind of gave the movie a bit more depth – though it really didn’t need it. We intended to see it at the Carmike because it has DLP and we’ve decided DLP is the best thing since sliced bread. Unfortunately, they were having technical problems with the hard drive (in the projector?) so we went to the more expensive (and cleaner) Century. We ended up standing in a line while waiting for the previous showing to clear out and have the theater clean. The only other movie I’ve had to wait in a line for was Pirates of the Caribbean 2 . Nice. Turns out, DLP is a lot better than I thought. You probably wouldn’t notice unless you have something to compare it to, but if you ever go to see a movie, especially action, and you have the choice to see it in a DLP theater (and the showtimes are similar) then always always ALWAYS choose the DLP theater. That’s my blurb on that.

Ticket Stub The opening titles is a very vague sequence that I assume is intended to give back story and catch people up as to where we’re at in the story. For me, it was uber-confusing. Luckily, my questions from what was going on in the sequence were each answered at some point in the movie. I think it’s safe to say that overall, I would have been better off if I knew anything about the comics. In any case, it wasn’t what I would call an action movie. While there *was* "violence", it certainly wasn’t focused on that and that’s what makes these movies interesting. The plot, was really good – which I didn’t expect to be the case, and I was often pleasantly surprised by the turn of events throughout the story. Marvel Studios has their finger on something here and I know Miles and I plan to attend all future Marvel Studios productions. They’ve done a really great job of setting up for future movies and future characters.

The acting was excellent. Edward Norton (playing Bruce Banner/Hulk) was an excellent choice. He seemed so perfect, to a non-comic enthusiast, because he was this small unassuming man, who looks like he can’t hurt a fly. Even to the point right before he transforms, he’s in this very calm state and it was really great to watch him work. Such a different front-man from the former Hulk, Lou Ferrigno who made a special appearance in this movie. (I was proud of myself for recognizing him before Miles. I give thanks to King of Queens for that catch.) While looking up how to spell his name on IMDB , I found he also played the voice of the Hulk. Which reminds me, I wish the Hulks were entirely non-verbal, though Miles did convince me as to why they might conceivably have the dialogue going. I also was a fan of the segmented flashbacks Bruce experiences after transforming back to his normal self.

Liv Tyler did a great job with her character, Betty Ross. I don’t know if this is what she always looks like, but it she often looked like she was on the verge of tears and had chapped lips. I’m not complaining, I liked it, whether intended or not. It gave her sort of a innocence that most 30-something people don’t have. Also, the romance between Ross and Banner was cute, not "sexy" as portrayed in the trailers, which I found to be very refreshing. I enjoyed several scenes between the two characters.

The visual effects could have been better in my opinion. My biggest complaint is that when any of the animated objects (non-human and non-Hulk) were on screen, it looked like video game quality. The Hulks were probably as realistic looking as technology allows right now, but I *know* photo realistic animated helicopters exist in other movies and so I wish they had been better quality. Part of the movie is set in a city in Brazil, which was especially neat, not just because visually the shots of the city were amazing, but because
my sister will be going there in a month and so it made me all jealous inside. I hope she gets to run on rooftops like Edward Norton.

Even though some commercials for the movie are saying "Just as good as Iron Man ", but don’t be fooled, this movie is not "just as good" – see my star rating on both posts for proof! But it’s at a similar level. You can’t compare the two fairly, because the characters are so different, resulting in movies that are entirely different. Tony Stark chooses to become a superhero. And he’s got cool hardware because he’s rich so there’s a lot more things going on that really wouldn’t make sense to do similar things in this movie. Plus Tony Stark’s personality is just fun to observe. Bruce Banner is a different character with different struggles and his flashiness is very minimal if at all, right down to his laptop computer. But his story is just as interesting. He’s more in torment than enjoying himself because what he’s experiencing he didn’t choose.

Overall, if you saw Iron Man , you’ll want to see The Incredible Hulk . If you want to see any future Marvel Studios movies ever made, you’ll want to see both.

I give The Incredible Hulk a 4.5 out of 5 stars.

No Country for Old Men

Because of no great movies coming out last weekend, and wanting to save a little on money, we “rented” No Country for Old Men via Video On Demand. I was president and if you’re thinking “That seems like an odd movie for Holli to choose”, then you’re mostly right. But it’s a movie that got great reviews and I figured I could make it through it. I didn’t dislike it, but it wasn’t as great as I was hoping for. When it ended it was just like “OK, I’m over” and I was like “this is how they’re ending it?” It wasn’t as bad as the ending to Cast Away (remember that?) but it was on the same level. The rest of the movie I enjoyed, for lack of a better word.

The character Anton Chigurh was very interesting. Miles said it best when he said Chigurh was logical about who he chose to kill. The first good shot we have of him, and his first real dialogue, I just said “Woah, he’s creepy!” He’s the kind of psychopathic killer I’d expect you’d compare to Hannibal, but with the disguise of a character like Keyser Soze. (Though, after watching The Usual Suspects, I was afraid of Soze for like weeks. Still am, in fact.) Sometimes Chigurh looked slightly comical, which took away from the scare factor a little for me. Most of his killings were hard to see making it easier to watch – either not in shot or the shot was far away or his method of killing left little mess.

The plot was suspenseful, often not giving you the answer to your questions clearly, but making you assume beyond a doubt that what you thought might happen probably did. I’m going to keep this short because I don’t want to give any spoilers, but it’s definitely worth seeing – probably not worth buying. I’d give this 4 stars out of 5. (I’m going to go back into past posts and give them a rating out of 5 stars as well, to help those wondering if they should watch it. Sometimes my reviews are inconclusive.)