[i meant to take a photograph but i forgot, hurf]

I'm generally not a big fan of Transformers combiners, both from a toy and fiction point of view. As toys, it means having a bunch of potentially crummy individual figures solely to make one big guy that takes up way too much space; in fiction, it means you're given a team of five to six unique characters which, at least on their toy packaging, are said to have fun and interesting personalities, but on screen they get a few token lines each and their main role is just to form the big dumb brute. The comics have had better luck giving them more personality, but they also deal with like a million other characters at the same time, so they can't really win. Revenge of the Fallen gets around this by literally making the Constructicons non-entities. Yeah, their robot modes show up, but not as the dudes who form Devastator, they're just other unrelated guys with construction vehicle modes. It's... complicated! But, in summary, Devastator is just a big dumb brute with literally no personality and he's got big honkin' balls. Yeah. Michael Bay really emphasises characterisation in his movies.

There's a big toy of the dude which has separate vehicles that combine into the big guy, but they don't even have individual robot modes. It is literally a set of some construction vehicles that bang together into the big dude, and that's all they do. And it retails for one hundred of the Queen's English fucking pounds. It's a good thing there's this small set retailing for a fifth of the price! The individual characters are all cute and dinky with some strangely adorable vehicle modes. Revenge is full of all kinds of weird robot modes, so the robots are a bit hit and miss - there's Rampage, the dude who's a friggin' pogo stick bulldozer; Hightower, the weird frog-like crane thing, and Scavenger, who's basically a big giant unicycle. With claws. They're all more unique than the rather drab G1 dudes, who all had the same basic body shape and were only really identifiable by their heads and the colour of their chests, but given the limited articulation and detail some of them are a bit worse than others. Scrapper, Long Haul and Scavenger are nice looking, while Mixmaster and Rampage are a bit eh, their odd proportions being rather impractical.

The combined mode is... interesting. It's a complete, bloody nightmare to put together and it seems impossible to actually get it to recreate the reasonably comprehensible shape of the promotional photography, but heck if it isn't a quirky monstrosity! I'm surprised it's taken Hasbro this long to get making a combiner in a small-scale manner like this; the Legends and Scout size classes are perfect for it, as they've just been recolouring the combiners from the Energon line since then. I'd be hesitant to say it's a good combiner, what with how there's very little proper articulation and the damn thing can barely stand properly, but given the limitations, it's not too shabby.



I watched A Nightmare on Elm Street. I have been meaning to watch the series for years. Like, non the kind of years I've been waiting to see Bomberman Jetters (it wasn't until I got the Shrine Place up and running that I realised it was going to be a necessity to slog through it), but I'm talking years. Like, ever since I started reading X-Entertainment. That's the long kind of years.

Of course, I only know about the series and Freddy Krueger because of the internet; I've never even seen the DVDs in stores or any kind of merchandise even back in the 90s, so I guess it just isn't big over here. But, basically, I'm familiar with Freddy as a character who's wisecracking and imaginative in his killings, and basically the murderous burned-alive human version of Bugs Bunny, I guess. In the first instalment he's just his monster dude without much personality. But, boy, what a monster! Nightmare on Elm Street has always tickled my fancy simply because the concept is interesting - the dude attacks you in your dreams! Yes, Jason has his incredible horror movie magic of just teleporting in front of you once the camera has him off-screen, but the basic fact is that it's still feasible to escape, y'know. Get a friggin' boat or something. Unless you really know the ins and outs of your dreams and psychology, you're more or less at an automatic disadvantage if you meet Freddy. Though I guess, again, you just need to move to a different state. I've no idea if the sequels try and rectify that, but the whole thing could easily have been pussed out of if the characters could have gotten the permission to move far away and get a hotel room or something. But that makes avoiding the threat easy, and you can't have that in a horror movie!

I love the exploration of dreams in media, but as I've said before in my review of Night Warriors, sometimes the definition and structure of dreams feels very cut and dry. There was really only one bit in that book that seemed to acknowledge that the theme and narrative of a dream can be irregular and loosely defined, and the rest seemed to stay stable enough for everyone to plot out their grand epic battles with ease. I'm doubtful the sequels will keep it up, but for the first half of the movie, Elm Street made the nightmares very real and very nightmarish. The outlandish environments, the frightening body transformation (I don't care if the effect probably looks silly and outdated by now, Freddy's elongated arms in the first scene are friggin' creepy), the general atmosphere... it's all captured very nicely, and Nancy's feet treading through the stairs as if they were a swamp is just brilliantly freaky. It did seem to lose that appeal after a while, where it just seemed to drop them back into the same boiler room repeatedly and with no real gimmicks taking place, but, hey, for a teen thrill kill flick, it did pretty good in that aspect.

My dad bought all seven DVDs off eBay, so watching the rest of them will be interesting, though it sounds like they get just a bit batshit insane after a while. I've generally a fondness for stuff that breaks the fourth wall, but New Nightmare sounds just a little bit ridiculous.



I have only now just discovered that there was, in fact, a sequel to Predator. All my friggin' life I have been under the belief that it was simply a one-off that actually managed to avoid having a crappy sequel, and that was the  reason everybody loved it and wanted to pair it up with Alien and make it produce mediocre offspring. My life has been reproduced in an upside-down manner, my friend.



Once upon a time, doors in shopping centres would beep and blare if someone was trying to steal something. Nowadays, doors seem to beep of their own accord for positively no reason. Most doors I see just beep for people entering or leaving; and not a simple beep that's the equivalent of "hello there" or something that otherwise just seems like a confirmation that, yep, yet another person entered the store. These are long, loud, klaxon alarms that would not be out of place in the Hall of Justice alerting them to Brainiac beating up a giant mechanical spider... or something. I am very out of touch with the DC Universe.
But the fact remains that these doors just beep for no reason at all. They beep if someone enters, if someone leaves, if someone steals, if someone gives, if the door is lonely and wants attention... they just friggin' beep. Maybe they act as metal detectors nowadays and are supposedly going to warn us if someone's carrying a gun, but really, would anyone notice? You can fit your car with a very loud car alarm, but I don't know anyone who hears those and thinks "oh no, someone's car is being stolen, I'D BETTER HELP!" Everyone just thinks "nobody likes you and I hope that car is your grave." It's a sad truth, and the only winning move is to not have a car.

It also doesn't help that automatic doors just seem to have died a death. Half of the ones I come across are either painstakingly slow or are totally non-functional, and they just put a sign up telling people to use the other door. We're not going to reach the age of The Jetsons with technology like that, fellas.



I watched Moon. Once again, no lead-up to it or anything, just "someone lent us Moon. Want to watch it?" "Sure." I'd heard of the movie before, but I knew nothing substantial about it.

Given how the movie is all story and it doesn't try to cover that by throwing big action sequences at you or anything, it's a bit difficult to summarise it without spoiling every little thing about its plot. The first twenty/thirty minutes are, basically, this guy called Sam is on the moon harvesting fuel, his only companion being creepy robot GERTY, and he's not too chuffed about that. Stuff gets psychological when he starts hallucinating that his wife on the base, and one of those hallucinations causes him to crash while out in a moon buggy, which is when the robot starts acting a little weird. And then I can't really say anymore without spoiling everything. This isn't a movie review where I inevitably end with "it's not bad, but you won't miss anything by not seeing it" or "stick around for the action scenes," because the story and themes are really what carry the movie, and it's a very interesting one.

Okay, there's clones.

Even before that showed up, I was intrigued - space and science fiction interest me, but I admit what intrigues me more is our current view of space as a cold and lonely place, unsuited for any life and certainly not a fun place to hang out. The story of Laika still brings a tear to my eye, as even if it hadn't died quickly and the shuttle hadn't gone bust, there wouldn't have been much of a future for the little pup. I mean, the concept of prison is pretty bad, but at least you're still on Earth. Sam's work takes place entirely on the moon and has only the eventual hope of returning home to keep him going, and has only a few video messages and his assistant robot to keep him company - but then the issue arises of how does he know he's not being lied to? What if the messages are just false reassurances to keep his morale up? The first thirty minutes are interesting on their own, like a slice-of-life story in space, though I guess it'd be hard to fill ninety minutes with that kind of content. The twists keep things lively, though even for ninety minutes the film is rather slow-going. In a good way, mind you...

... because of the beautiful model shots. If anyone actually reads my Red Dwarf reviews (I hope so :{ ) then you're no doubt familiar with how much I lost my friggin' model shots. Moon has an actual movie budget to work with, not to mention some fantastic CGI elements and a beautiful musical score to accompany it, and the frequent slow-pans and long shots are mesmerising. It's part of why I admire space. It's lonely and dark and frightening, but I'd be lying if I said it wasn't beautiful because of that. The theme of the film strikes a chord with how I'm currently vegetating indoors while dying of the flu, but the music, the visuals, the mellow pacing... there's an almost serene feeling about the movie, despite the fact the story is about how corrupt businesses disregard human rights in favour of getting easy labour. I appear to enjoy throwing inappropriate adjectives around.



Today's observation: I haven't vomited in at least a decade. In that long interim I'd come to expect vomiting to be something that could be at least mildly comfortable (at least, as comfortable as shitting through your mouth can be). Boy, was I wrong! Thanks a lot, flu, you sneaky ninja bastard.



I still keep listing the year as 2009. It -- it feels so nice typing it. :{


I was roped into watching Avatar. In 3D! The movie is hyped to all hell and opinions range from best movie ever to not really that fantastic, and I wasn't really that fussed on seeing it. I'm sorry, but calling something the best [fill in the blank] ever is a sure-fire way to make me not interested! I usually end up trying it and liking it later (sorry about the delay, Elfen Lied and Half-Life 2!) and I wouldn't have minded watching it, but I wasn't really in a rush, y'know. Someone at the workplace had been cracking gags about the film, suggesting the film would be nothing but James Cameron popping on-screen and reminding the audience, "I directed Titanic!" I share a workplace with comedy masterminds.

The movie is, without a doubt, a spectacle. It's hard to really praise CGI nowadays since it's become such a natural part of the moviemaking process, but the film creates a truly engaging environment. The world of Pandora is a sight to behold; it's lush, colourful, and bristling with activity. It's one thing to have an alien landscape and outlandish creatures, but what really brings the film to life are the Na'vi. Star Wars is bristling with all kinds of colourful life forms and civilisations, but you never really get acquainted with their customs or culture (obviously because there's a friggin' war going on), but you can't help but get the impression they're no different from humans except for having funny heads.

The Na'vi, really, are just a jumble of basically every tribe, civilisation and culture that were screwed over by Western warfare, except with the addition of alien wildlife, a more blatant philosophical connection to their deity, and the fact they're like two metres taller than we are. But the movie, rather than just basically stating that in an obvious manner after thirty minutes of screen time with them, it dedicates a long, long portion of the film to Jake first meeting them in his avatar body, slowly learning the ropes of their culture, bonding with them, until he is considered an honorary Na'vi and holds them closer to his heart than the organisation he's supposedly working with. It takes up at least an hour of screen time, but it's well-deserved; it enriches the bond with the landscape and presents the "aliens" as a fleshed-out species bristling with history and an intriguing way of life.

The visuals are quite remarkable. The animals are pretty shallow modifications of creatures we're familiar with (so there's no Eldritch abominations, I'm afraid), but they move realistically and smoothly and are full of life, and the unimportant creatures have bizarre easily-triggered defence techniques that act as interesting means of colourfully decorating the jungle. Even the environment is full of life; light pulses through the ground, the vines of the trees appear to have a life of their own, colourful foliage drift through the air - it makes for some truly outstanding scenery.

The plot? Well, uh...

Let's say it's pretty shallow. Bum Reviews was pretty accurate when it was compared to Ferngully (which, to go on a tangent, seems to be a popular subject for hating these days on the internet, but I can barely remember the movie! That bugged me for years, as I definitely saw it once and an ad for it was included on several videos I had years and years ago, but I still haven't seen the movie since), but the plot is kinda taking the backseat ride throughout the film. I mean, the movie is billed as spectacle first and story second. That's partially why I wasn't interested, as, yes, although I will invariably be wowed by some really neat visuals, I've mostly just been looking for good stories in movies these days. I'm... not trying very hard. The movie's more a visual experience than any real story, and that's why I think it's perfect for a video game. Like, the futuristic immerse-yourself-for-reals kind and not our press-some-buttons-to-replicate-the-feeling-of-bonding-with-some-whacked-out-pteradactyl-thing variety.

As for the 3D, it was pretty humdrum and I don't see why everyone's harping about it. It's distracting at first, then you get used to it, but by that point it's become pointless. It felt like they did the first hour in 3D, then after that it was only a select few scenes. It's not bad, but if it's abandoned and the technology is lost forever I can't say I'll be mourning it. Those 3D glasses are uncomfortable.

It's a pretty immersive three hour visual story with a pretty kickass action scene at the end, but as I've no doubt said countless times, anyone with more taste than me probably won't be too impressed.



I think I'm surprised at just how non-passionate I can be. Maybe I'm just comparing myself to the frighteningly obsessive crowd, but I stumbled across a few LiveJournals lately which contained some crazily rabid responses to the likes of Peach not being in New Super Mario Bros. Wii, Banjo being in that Sonic karting game, Mega Man 10 still being 8-bit, and other such comparatively hot button issues. I mean, I guess I could consider them worthy of some discussion, but I think at the same time I just ponder to myself... do I care?

Like, yeah, I won't deny that I was looking forward to New Super Mario Bros. Wii, and was shitting myself just a little bit to get my hands on it. I was aware that there's no possible way it could live up to my expectations, and let's face it, there's no chance of Nintendo ever actually making the perfect Mario Bros. game because then I'd have no reason to buy any more instalments (because my perfect game would have a friggin' level editor, man), but at the very least, having a few new levels and gimmicks to tide me over for a while sounded pretty neat. Having Toads fill the extra slots rather than characters with actual worth was a nitpick, yes, but it's not like it really effected me because you can't play as anyone but Mario in single-player, and I don't know anyone else who'd play the game with me that would be concerned by such an omission. The "her skirt would require too much code" excuse was pretty crummy, mind you, but...

I think I've realised I can't continue this argument without basically saying, "boo hoo, your precious widdle game doesn't have all of the things you want?" I'm kind of surprised at what a patronizing cockbag I can be. But although I would try and word it a bit more politely, that's what my thoughts basically come down to - NSMB Wii was a big ol' cocktease and they know they can make a sequel for it in five years with some extraneous extras and people will shit themselves all over again because people get worked up about things like that. I'm just interested in a good level editor, for the love of god. The simple tile-based levels have been around for 25 years now, guys, how bloody hard can it be to include one in an official product?!


The journal also nagged about Mega Man 10 and how it could very well have used better graphics this time, using the style of Mega Man 8 or something high-quality, and the writer chose that as a reason to give up on the Mega Man series. I've ripped sprites for nearly ten years (oh my god i am under the belief that i am old) and I thought I was a graphics whore! I liked Mega Man 9's graphics. It would be nice to see some new sprites made under the limitations of the SNES, but I think the problem is after the 8-bit graphics the style became very hit-and-miss; Mega Man 7's style, in concept, isn't that bad, but I never liked the stiff animations and I HATE MEGA MAN'S FACE SO MUCH (thank you so much, unimaginative sprite comic artists!); Mega Man 8 is certainly detailed, smooth and colourful but it lacks the practical gameplay precision of the 8-bit sprites. Personally, I thought the style of Wily Wars was the way to go - ever-so-slightly upscaled and shaded, but still with the same amount of stuff on screen, though it certainly wasn't perfect, as I felt a lot of things in it were darker than they needed to be, and the shading kinda drowned the charm of the line art underneath. So, yeah, I think staying 8-bit is the safest way to go. It helps that Mega Man was among the nicest looking games on the NES, so it's not like we're getting brand new sprites in the shitty-looking style of The Adventures of Dino Riki.


It's kind of ironic me arguing about this person's entries essentially behind their back without so much as a mention of who they are or any means of actually debating with me or anything, which is something I was particularly miffed about back when I had my kerfuffle with the Sonic sprite site. On one hand it's because I'm in no mood to argue with such zealous individuals, and on the other it's because I forgot the URL. But I don't like arguing, I just like sharing opinions, y'know.



I got orange juice on my wrist, and now it's sticky. You would not believe how uncomfortable that is.



I've been playing a bit of Batman: Arkham Asylum lately and it's gotten my dad and I interested in comic discussions, which inevitably leads to discussions about movies based off comics, which cannot be discussed without mentioning how a majority of comic book movies are kinda terrible. But he's a compulsive DVD buyer and I'm willing to sit through any old schlock, so, yeah, an opportunity to experience these movies firsthand!

We watched Daredevil. My only real knowledge of the character is through Spider-Man but I've always loved the look, plus, dude, he's a blind guy with radar vision. And in the very first issue he kills the villain just by making him run, as the narration box explains that the villain is a fatty fatty fat-fat and the poor sap promptly gets a cholesterol related heart attack. I am not kidding. Daredevil killed a guy through weight awareness before it was considered hip! But, yeah, the movie - I only really knew about it because from what I'd heard it was basically a springboard for the Elektra movie, which I have heard is rather terrible, but we can decide that for ourselves sometime.

Matt Murdock accidentally blinds himself via radioactive waste (okay, it's not exactly stated, but what other liquid is going to live inside a big red biohazard barrel?) but gains crazy super versions of his other senses so he sees everything in fancy CGI radar sound/smell vision and when his dad is killed by an assassin after a boxing match, he decides to stand up for justice and dress himself in a wild costume with belts ahoy. There's some dude called the Kingpin who's running all the crime in the city, and he goes out to stop him, getting into scraps with the sniper-like Bullseye and being roped into a romance sub-plot with Elektra, who gets killed off before the climax. Whoops! Daredevil then knocks the shit out of Kingpin and accepts the fact that he hasn't really achieved much because the guy's just going to bust himself out of jail anyway, but he'll stick around to take care of that. He's also a lawyer!

Superhero movies tend to have some kind of moral lesson attached to them underneath all the acrobatics and face punching; Spider-Man constantly reminds us "with great power comes great responsibility," the X-Men is all about treating people with respect and equality even if they have frickin' laser beams coming out of their nipples, and I'm pretty sure Batman had something but I think Arkham Asylum made me forget any of that in favour of dangling people from stone gargoyles. Daredevil doesn't quite have an easily recognisable message behind it, probably because half an hour of sub-plot was axed from the film, but what I got was him going around shouting about "justice." Not... anything applying that word to a sentence, just "justice." Batman fights for justice, generally, but he also has a code of honour regarding not killing dudes so you at least know he's not just saying words and not obeying them. Daredevil just throws the word around yet has no qualms leaving a guy to be cut in half by a train or chucking another guy through the highest window of a church.

I was surprised to see Ben Affleck in the starring role - I seem to recall him being a big name around the time this came out, but then after Gigli (that didn't even reach UK shores, did it?) all news of him just seemed to disappear, and I'd forgotten he still existed. Apparently he still does movies! I think this was the first time I'd ever actually seen him in a movie, as I've somehow never seen Armageddon and I only watched the first five minutes of Shakespeare In Love so I could see Spudgun from Bottom in period dress. Michael Clarke Duncan is an awesome Kingpin - he's got the perfect physique, he's got the fitting gravelly voice, and the man looks damn smart in a zoot suit. I don't know Bullseye and I don't know Colin Farrell, but the man overacts like hell and I love him for it - it's a rather silly power, certainly up there with the likes of Plant Man, but his Irish accent and the fact he kills Frank Miller by throwing a pen at his face is enough to make me love him to bits. Farrell and Duncan totally steal the show.

It's not a bad movie, but it's not outstanding either; it might be the lack of a real super storyline (Spider-Man's got these crazy egomaniacs wanting to dominate the world, and Daredevil... just wants to stop the crime lord of one city. Give the Kingpin some robots, then we're talkin'!) or how a less well-known-to-people-who-don't-read-comics character likely struggles to maintain its original flavour when being made into a movie for mass consumption, but it's kinda unremarkable, for lack of a better term. You could certainly watch worse things, and as a person with a mild interest in the character I enjoyed it, but you probably shouldn't go out of your way to see it.



I've realised I don't know how to make blog entries that aren't about film reviews anymore. That saddens me.



I watched Fear And Loathing In Las Vegas. I've heard plenty about Hunter S. Thompson and been meaning to get more acquainted with his works, but it was one of those things that I was in no immediate hurry to do. The final clincher to get me watching it was Bomberman, of all bloody things. Seriously. There's a costume based off his appearance in Bomberman Live and the description to the casino-themed level is just oozing with references to the source material, so I thought, "if Bomberman can't convince me to get watching this, nothing will." It's a good thing we bought the DVD in August last year!

It's an experience. It's not so much a movie or a tangible storyline full of deep concern for the characters or for an enlightening meaning behind it, it's just literally an experience. They're frightening and erratic individuals working on an insane train of thought on a quest for the American dream disguised under a series of reporting jobs, acting up at bars, violating hitchhikers and drugging pre-teen girls, but goddamn, there's something to admire about the batshit antics they get up to. Terry Gilliam's incredible penchant for mastering completely oddball shooting and scenery really captures the imagery you need; it's one thing for Raoul to wake up with a microphone wrapped around his face, a tape recorder stuck to his shirt and no trousers, but when he's also wearing a long foam lizard's tail and the apartment is slowly flooding with some indescribable liquid while he listens to the previous night's escapades on the tape, it crafts a beautifully absurd atmos'. If I have one complaint about it, it's that Gary Busey doesn't make a second appearance. With that one unscripted line he completely steals the show.



It's amusing how a day of work where absolutely nothing happens can completely drain me of life.


I read The Space Vampires, the book that was the film Lifeforce was adapted from. I've had a curiosity lately to read books that were made into movies, as the "art" of adapting a story into another media always interests me; from what I've heard, Jaws was a vaguely droll page-turner in its original format, but was made into a masterpiece of cinema when Steven Spielberg got his hands on it, though having never seen either version (seriously! I've missed out on so damn much!) I can't really judge.

The Space Vampires is about vampires from spaaaaaace!!, but they're actually these metaphysical beings that are aliens and occupy human bodies and can give or take energy as they will, and there's a threat of the alien vampires taking over Earth, but unlike the movie, it's almost like a B-plot in favour of Colin Wilson waxing poetic on psychology, vampirism and other such topics. I'd struggle to actually retell the book's story, as personally, it didn't quite have the clean-cut narrative of the film, but had the alien ship being found, three aliens being taken to Earth, them escaping, and then after that the astronaut and his psychologist buddy go to various places and learn about topics relevant to the vampires' powers. It is very interesting, mind you - I admit I'm of the pop culture belief of vampire = tall, pale dudes with pointy teeth, capes, coffin beds and broad European accents with tastes for blood, but the idea of vampirism being a positive and natural thing, more about sharing energy between people with affections for each other is pretty nifty and intriguing.

Probably because I was comparing it to the film, but I was almost expecting something to go dreadfully wrong in their plans - after all, they'd acknowledged that the Prime Minister was the host of an alien, but didn't appear to be in a rush to do anything about it, surely something like that would come around to bite them in the ass? The same scene with the head of the mental asylum becoming a host took place, pumping him full of knock-out drugs while the alien dumped exposition on them, but it didn't result in a frightening (if random) moment of that guy vomiting up blood to create a frightening, levitating alien image before it splashed on the floor on the dude expiring; no, the alien just told them a seriously extensive amount of back-story regarding their motives and their race and that's that. The climax is a lot more downscaled, with no actual true threat taking place, just three people with alien hosts trapping our heroes and threatening to do nasty things to them, but another alien shows up, they all talk philosophically, and then the aliens voluntarily explode, leaving their hosts unharmed. As always with my sum-ups, it's not quite as dry and anti-climatic as that - the original text is truly engaging and I'd say the ending is almost touching, if it does seem more like an excuse to talk about science and philosophy more than alien threat on our planet, but it's an entertaining read. It's definitely a totally different animal than the movie, though.

The book is set near the end of the 21st century and the movie is meant to follow suit, but the film has an intriguing contrast in settings, as the film begins in the remarkably dream-like environments of the human shuttle and the extensive alien vessel, but then the rest of the film takes place in quaint 1980s Britain - yes, it's not meant to be the 1980s, but look at the detective's polo neck and you tell me if it's any other period. The film retains the same kind of low-key feel as the book for the majority of it; the characters are aware that there's aliens on the run but they can't do an awful lot about it, though the book spends an extraordinary amount of time at the two heroes' visit to Sweden to see an expert on vampirism, whereas the film has a more pessimistic air about it, giving the impression that they can't really loiter even if they have nothing they can do. By the time they exit the mental asylum, the film takes a serious time for the worse by having the whole world go to a shambles; the alien ditches the body, the Prime Minister is possessed, and then the whole of London is set ablaze as people are stripped of their life by rampaging vampires. In contrast, the book has them visiting the Prime Minister mostly to intimidate him, things take a mild turn for the worse, but then it's all sorted out with a bit of arguing with the aliens, then they all have some whiskey. There was loss of human life throughout but nothing to any startling extent, and the entire alien population basically chooses to kill itself or try and reform its old ways, and everyone agrees to keep their mouths shut about the whole thing. It's an event worth reading, but in the world it takes place only a scant few actually know about it, and there's almost the impression of, well, what have we learnt from this? The movie, meanwhile, has an entire compost heap dumped on the fan and the movie doesn't stick around to tell us of what happens after the threat is implied to be stopped.

As I said, it's an interesting book and quite philosophical, but I think I've got a soft spot for the movie. Its cynical ideals appeal to me more, and there's a certain raw charm about it - the old-timey quaintness, the knowledge that so much was cut but we're unlikely to ever see it, and dude, Patrick Stewart vomiting blood until he dies. It don't get more badass than that.



Let's kick off the new year with a movie review, because nothing screams "forgettable blog entry" like one of those!

I saw the new Sherlock Holmes movie. I also had a nice pizza and went to a meeting about a production of Incident At Vichy, but I'm of the impression nobody really cares about those. I'm mildly saddened by that fact. =(

So, Sherlock Holmes! He's the man with super deducing skills and he's got this guy called Watson who hangs out with them and they're totally gay for each other. Don't friggin' deny it, man. There's this chap who dabbles in black magic and he's going to take over the world by weeding out all the dudes he doesn't like, but then it turns out that he just pulled some serious science fraud. Spoilers! Also, Moriarty is mentioned like five times at the end to make for a very obvious sequel hook.

I don't think you can have a person who's aware of pop culture not be aware of Sherlock Holmes, though I admit, of all bloody things, my only true experience with the guy is that episode of The Real Ghostbusters where Sherlock and Moriarty come back as ghosts. Despite that, I was still a bit worried that the movie would be like the new Star Trek - an enjoyable flick, but it felt like you could just replace it with different characters and the movie would barely even change, lacking much resemblance to the original source material (though I was still a bit iffy regarding that; see the Star Trek review for more details on that!). I obviously have no in-depth knowledge of the Holmes lore, but I can definitely say it's a good movie! A healthy mix of action, antics, ambiguity and answers; Robert Downey Jr. makes a very fun Sherlock Holmes. I was a little worried he would just be Tony Stark in a deerstalker hat, but he does a great job of developing Holmes as a unique character. Indeed, the movie definitely looks like it wants to be a franchise, and given the very entertaining interaction between Holmes and Watson and the rich environment it takes place in, I'd dare say it would work very nicely.

I also saw the trailer for Iron Man 2. Hell yeah!