I lament the size of my online footprint, complete my collection of Star Trek on DVD, and geek out over Pokemon 10.
Directed by Jon Favreau
Starring Robert Downey Jr., Terrance Howard, Jeff Bridges, Gwyneth Paltrow, Leslie Bibb, Shaun Taub, Faran Tahir and Clark Gregg.
I love how the Internet has become invaluable for movie geeks. Websites are created now chronicling the entire development of a movie from script to screen. I’ve been following the development of Iron Man since its early days, and ever since Jon Favreau signed on as the director, everything about it just seemed right. So, I was one of the many who flocked to it on opening weekend. Was it going to be as right as I hoped?
Tony Stark, hard drinkin’, hard partyin’ billionaire industrialist, is off to the front lines in Afghanistan to demonstrate his latest weapons system. However, terrorists soon kidnap Stark and force him to build weapons for them. Stark, however, soon builds for himself a suit of power armor which he uses to escape. This leaves Stark a changed man. He shuts down his company’s weapons division, and seeks out to refine his power armor. Becoming the hero Iron Man, he then sets out to disarm those who use his weapons. But this doesn’t sit too well with his business partner Obidiah Stane. With the help of his friends, Jim Rhodes and Pepper Potts, can Stark disarm the evil doers and stop Stane’s evil plot?
What I Liked
As I’ve been mentioning, everything about this film walking into it was right. What you’ve heard is true, Robert Downey Jr. is spot-on perfect as Tony Stark. It was even fun seeing Jeff Bridges all slimy and villainous for a change. There were numerous in-jokes and references to the comics that were nice little touches, and the special effects bringing the armor to life are fantastic.
What I Didn’t Like
I don’t know…this film left me feeling kind of hollow. There weren’t a lot of moments that made me stand up and cheer in the theatre. I blame the fact that I’ve been following this so closely online that there were no surprises left. It felt like I’d seen it a dozen times already.
This can stand along Spider-Man and X-Men as a perfect Marvel comics adaptation.
Directed by the Wachowski Brothers
Starring Emile Hirsch, Christina Ricci, John Goodman, Susan Sarandon, Scott Porter, Matthew Fox, Roger Allam, Rain, and Paulie Litt.
In the grand realm of anime, Speed Racer is one that I was always vaguely aware of. Outside of a very catchy theme song, didn’t really know much about it. However, I was aware that a live-action movie was in development for a long time. And then when I heard that the Wachowski Brothers, those responsible for The Matrix, signed on to do it, I was hooked. With its unusual trailers that had people going WTF, I was more and more intrigued. I knew I had to see this film.
The Racer family had long been a proud, independent team in the world of racing. And their son and star driver, Speed Racer, is on the verge of dominating the sport. After turning down a sponsorship offer from the powerful Royalton corporation, young Speed learns a horrible truth. The world of racing is fixed, with the most powerful sponsors forming a cartel that determines the outcome of the races. Rocked to his very core, Speed sets out to blow the lid off this conspiracy. A fellow driver, Taejo, has gathered enough evidence to implicate Royalton and shut down the cartel. And he will turn over the evidence if Speed and the mysterious government agent Racer X help him win the Crucible, a devastating rally that claimed the life of Speed’s older brother. Can Speed win the big race, clear his family name, and help bring honour back to the sport of racing?
What I Liked
When The Matrix first came out, some of my more cynical friends said “Yeah, well, if you liked The Matrix, you just haven’t watched enough anime.” With Speed Racer, the Wachowskis have truly made a live-action anime. From the colour pallet to the editing to the pacing of the story…all the techniques used in Japanese animation are here in full force. The acting is honest and sincere, the races are spectacular and exciting, and the musical score knocked my socks off. Oh, and Christina Ricci is just so darn purty.
What I Didn’t Like
Wow…not much. Subtle it ain’t. I mean, one of the villains is named “Snake Oiler.” The heroes and the villains are clearly defined, and the plot is rather thin.
Fun, exciting, spectacular summer entertainment.
I gush about Speed Racer, tell you about one of the funniest websites ever, and go poking around online for hard-to-find film scores.
I lament the loss of Lex Luthor on Smallville, figure out what’s next for Marvel movies, and give a review of Iron Man.