My love/hate relationship with Gotham

Gotham

Alright, so let’s get the elephant out of the room quickly. Yes, I’ve been absent and neglecting my obligation to myself to continue writing or posting things to this blog. My bad on that, but I had been feeling less and less of a drive to write, and starting a soul-crushing office job didn’t help. Although with that job now gone, I can move on and get back to writing.

As the title says, I have a love/hate relationship with this show. There are parts I am really liking, especially the way Jim Gordon is being handled, both in terms of his portrayal by Ben McKenzie, and the way he’s being written. Another good point to mention, is the storylines with the mob. Granted yes Penguin is pretty much there for fan-service, but he’s being used effectively for the most part. Harvey Bullock is being used effectively, and the way Donal Logue is playing him is awesome. What I’m being annoyed about is all (Excuse the language here) of Batman’s f***ing rogues gallery keeps showing up, and I’m sorry, but Fox knows jack and sh** about proper execution of fan service and how to properly weave beginnings. Some of the writers should be shot, not killed, just given a reminder about what proper execution of ideas looks like.

Some of the most irritating things that is annoying me about the series is Batman’s Rogues gallery showing WAY too soon in the city. I get in certain cases, like Penguin, where he’s very young and Batman doesn’t tangle with him until he’s probably 40 or so. It’s just that Edward Nygma is technically a very avid technical personality that focuses on well technology. With how young they’re making him seem, he should be in college or university working on a computer sciences degree, not doing forensic work for the GCPD. I’m sorry but there is no justification for having Nygma even in Gotham at this point. Then there’s Harvey Dent, which they’re just barely scraping together enough material to make it even work.

He’s the Assistant DA in Gotham, which to me screams “We desperately want him in the show, even though he’s technically supposed to be in another city or perhaps law school still.” As while Penguin kind of makes sense to have in the mob, the same reasoning can’t be applied to Harvey, as in most storylines for Batman, Harvey is roughly the same age as Bruce. Maybe a smidge over, but by the time Batman shows up in this continuity, Harvey would be pushing his mid to late 40’s before he becomes Two-face. Not to mention is borderline psychotic nature they’ve shown in the show, kind of makes me think they really want him to be two-face much earlier than he’s supposed to.

Another of the Rogues that really doesn’t fit, but they’re trying so hard to keep in, is Selina Kyle. She is on the right path, but she doesn’t need to be in the show. She should be growing up in a different city, as Bruce technically doesn’t meet her until he’s an adult. I really find she just doesn’t fit within the parameters of the show, but being that Fox doesn’t really fit in the picture much either, I can muddle through it as best as they can. Now with Selina mentioned, I have to talk about Ivy. Is it just me, or is Fox really pushing for her to be the kid version of Dr. Pamela Isley? They couldn’t justify putting Pamela in the show, so they called her Ivy Pepper and as a subtle hint to reinforce it, She often wears green and has the usual red hair of Pam Isley.

At least in some cases, the Rogues Gallery is working. As I mentioned with Penguin, so to with Victor Zsasz. He’s still the psychotic killer we all know, granted he prefers a gun and works as a hired hitman/bodyguard for Falcone. Another of the Rogues that I find is being handled at least somewhat well is Scarecrow. They didn’t make it Jonathan, but did tie him to the Scarecrow of this time period, since its loosely centered in the 90’s, even though the cellphones look like they’re from early 2000. Dr. Gerald Crane, Jonathan’s father is taking up the monocle of Scarecrow, and is doing so quite well, and without a fear toxin. Not to mention having being played by Julian Sands is a nice touch.

One thing about the Venom drug being introduced, I find it be a slight cop-out. Granted yes I complain about having too many of Batman’s Rogues showing up, but having Venom in the show with no Bane is kind of pointless. They would’ve been better off-putting an early form of Joker’s laughing gas to get the same if not better point across.

Now that I’ve gotten that off my chest, I can finally end off this blog/rant I have about the show. I wish they’d focus more on Gordon, his cases and the mob. Leave Batman’s rogues out of it, and the show will do fine. Not to mention they could introduce new villains that Gordon could tackle, that aren’t necessarily from Batman’s rogues gallery. It would give the show new depth and a fresh perspective. Otherwise we’ll end up with Batman when Bruce is 15 and in season 2 or 3 of the show. The whole point of said concept was to have a show without Batman. Again, its kind of why the idea was pitched to DC in the first place. Which makes Arrow and The Flash much better TV show adaptations of their characters to me.

Anyway, with that I’ll sign off. Look forward to some reviews coming of movies I’ve been watching recently, including The Hobbit Part 3.

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Sin City: A Dame To Kill For

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So I just got back from seeing Sin City: A Dame To Kill For. Good ol’ Tuesday night matinée, in a 3D screening, since the theatres here didn’t get a 2D screening. It made some of the movie that much more painful to watch. Don’t get me wrong, I like this movie, but there are moments that make it a let down from the first movie.

The first movie has 4 stories all knitted together very well, and none of the stories feel like they’re over powering the others. This one however has 3 stories interwoven and one vignette with Marv as the intro. The main focus piece being Dwight and the “A Dame To Kill For” story. The problems I had with the movie was that Dwight’s story went way too long, and it wasn’t the pacing. It was characters are not utilized well, especially in the form of Marv. He returns for this one, because all of it is before his character meets his (Spoiler) death in the first Sin City story.

Marv is fine, but he’s just a side character and gets really sort of flat lines in the movie, because we know he’s thinking them, but it doesn’t mean we need him to say them. He had a lot more character development in the first one, which made sense as he was just a mindless killing machine before he met Goldie. While it’s always nice to see Eva Green on-screen and well nude for pretty much most of her screen time. She plays what she’s written very well, and is very manipulative.

I knew she would be, the problem is we don’t see a lot of development for her, and it makes her two-dimensional as a (spoiler) villain. The 3D has its moments where it’s utilized well, like in the credit sequence, but after a while, it all blends together, so you forget you’re even watching a 3D movie.

Kind of making it rather pointless to be used, and was probably just there to make money for the studio. Though it hasn’t paid off, since the movie is doing rather poorly at the box office. I also can see why, as they put it up near Guardians of the Galaxy and Bay’s TMNT. So it was destined to flop from the get go. What they should’ve done, was released it in March, like they did with the first movie, that way they’re long before Marvel and DC’s slugfest of superhero movies.

Now onto Dwight himself, played by Josh Brolin. He’s perfect for the role of Dwight before his change. Unfortunately with his big change being in this movie, it falls flat, when they merely give him Clive Owen’s haircut from the previous movie, without Clive Owen. He’s supposed to have his face completely changed. All they did was take the scars out and change the hair. I know the movie isn’t meant to be taken too seriously, but takes you out of the story when everyone on-screen reacts to him being “completely different” when its a cleaned up Brolin with more hair. I don’t mean to nitpick, but still.

The two surprising stories were however, Johnny’s and Nancy’s stories. Johnny’s being The Long, Bad Night that didn’t feel long at all. Due to the movie focusing on Brolin as Dwight, we don’t get the sense of Johnny’s strife, only just small scenes and cameos. It made his story feel compressed and not executed well enough. I felt we could’ve done with more of Johnny’s journey through “The Long Bad Night” by giving him more exposition, and more scenes of his night getting progressively worse. Instead its just a few choice scenes of him, which in Sin City terms is a rather dull evening by comparison.

Nancy’s Revenge works out the best, as its interspersed throughout Dwight’s and it gets more building and building until she finally snaps and decides to act. It was the new material, as Nancy’s stories end after Hartigan and she just becomes a side character for the rest of the graphic novels. So seeing her character development was a nice refresher and with Bruce Willis as Hartigan trying to help her from purgatory or hell in a way. Although if you think about it, having Marv in it didn’t make much sense as she appears in the first movie’s story where Marv ends up dead and she’s completely fine. So continuity error there… Oh well.

The other nitpick I have to say is in Little Miho, as much as I loved seeing Devon Aoki in the role in the previous movie, I wasn’t a fan of the giant eye shadow that was her replacement. No to mention this one being taller than Devon, made her less “Little” in that sense. Again its a nitpick, but I felt it needed to be addressed. The 3D doesn’t help, in one sequence they make Marv seem like a cartoon character with cars buzzing around his head like flies.

Definitely a positive for the movie is the music, Robert Rodriguez returns not only to co-direct with Frank Miller, but also to compose the music with some help on the tasty track “Skin City” featuring the vocals of Steven Tyler of Aerosmith. Overall the movie seems like it could’ve done with some editing or a script re-write for more well thought out Dwight story and more of Johnny. Dwight’s story just felt padded, so it was a let down. Since I love the Big Fat Kill story in the first movie.

Final thoughts: If you want to see it and loved the first one, give it a watch, maybe you’ll find it better than I did. Or rent it later, as I doubt it’ll last in theatres much longer.

Side Note: Don’t expect a Guardians Of The Galaxy review from me. I loved it so much, I don’t want to spoil it. It’s very continuity heavy with the rest of the Marvel universe. All I can tell you is believe the hype, and go see it in the theatre. Don’t necessarily see that one in 3D, although I hear the 3D is beautiful in Guardians. So it’s up to you on that one. However, I’ll do a review on Amazing Spider-man 2, as it bothered me too. Not in the same way, but it does bother me, none the less.

Robocop 2014… Yep, it’s time.

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So, I managed to watch the remake this afternoon. Being an avid fan of the first two movies from the 80’s and the subsequent TV series and the mini series developed in Canada. So I’ve seen the entire run. I may like and even love the timeline in place, despite the events of 3, and the pacification of Robocop in the 90’s TV series. The mini series I love, despite the improbabilities of the hackers in it. Well, now that I’ve established I know the source material, at least in terms of what we’ve been shown over the years.

With the remake, they try to go into new territory, while at the same time, following the old continuity as an example. I even like some of the ideas and concepts brought up, and over the movie isn’t horrid. Although some of the new actors are kind of painful to have on-screen. Thankfully, the main actor playing Murphy/Robocop, isn’t entirely devoid of acting skill. He maybe still relatively new, but he has some skill.

Unlike the actress playing his wife or the actor playing his son. I’ll give the kid a pass, since he’s a kid and he’s still learning. Her on the other hand, it’s her inability to convince us as the audience that she is suffering, and showing some strength. The only time we see her give a damn, is right after (Spoiler) her husband is left in critical condition from a car explosion. Where she is barely in the room, when they tell her that he either will die on life support, or be turned into a cyborg to live.

This is one of the odd concepts they try to bring in, which is “How do we make a cyborg in a family setting, work with the situation?” Although as we see in the movie, they don’t even give it a chance. They give him a few minutes with his family, before he goes to be put to sleep for the night, and readied for his big reveal later on. The best acting in the movie comes from every one else, which is kind of sad if you think about it.

I personally would’ve rather had an ok ensemble cast, with an insanely brilliant lead actor. As he could carry the movie, the original had this. We had a bunch of up and coming actors as the ensemble, and we had a relatively unknown, but still very good actor in the form of Peter Weller in the original. He carried that movie, not to mention the writing helped. In this, they tried to help with the writing, unfortunately, the editing and the combination of so many concepts introduced, is where things are going awry.

We have two opposing arguments in the movie, that they put in there from both the original movie and today. Can we trust our lives to a machine? The original movie brought it to light how our lives could be controlled by corporations. It hit the core of that idea right on the head, since we kind of do live in a world dominated by corporations.

In this one, the corporation takes a back seat, and its all politics, and news coverage. Then we have the corporation wanting Robocop to be more drone-like, like the original. Before, it was a push of the button at a computer, reprogramming him. Wiping his memory and making him totally autonomous, or so they believed.

Here we see another problem with the movie, the corporation still wants him to be autonomous and machine, but the people and the politicians want him human. Where the old movie had governments as on the side of the corporation and needing a new way to handle the grueling times. This one, they say that, but we have no evidence that crime is really that bad. Aside from the one criminal character that is making weapons deals from stolen police evidence lockup.

Aside from that, which is more of a federal issue, and not a local law enforcement problem. It’s a matter of justifying the use of a robot in an urban setting. They just don’t show enough justification for having him out there in the first place. So it makes their whole argument pointless. So putting aside logic, in the sense that it is a movie.

Moving on to music, its solid and it gives us dramatic tension, while paying homage to the old movie’s theme song. Which is nice, since I enjoy the old music. Special effects are pretty solid, and very little CG is over used. At least to me, I’m sure there were several key action sequences where the CG was present, but its mixed so well with the practical, that its hard to notice. Only once fight scene showed a CG robocop that was obvious to the naked eye, that was over the top. It happens, even in the old movies they used miniatures for the big fight scenes. As it would’ve killed Peter Weller from being jostled around so much.

My only big issue with the movie, is that it tried to be too much like the original in the end. After a while, the film seems to realize that “Oh shit, we’re nearing the 2 hour mark, and we haven’t resolved anything. So the pace quickens and they mash in the last half of the original movie into the ending, by having one sequence of Robocop going against the corporation and having a crap ton more of the references from the old movie put in, with Lewis helping him escape.

Since I bring Lewis up, let’s discuss how the filmmakers decided to take the Sarge from the old movies and merge him with Lewis. No, I’m not kidding. Lewis is now a black man, instead of being a tough as nails woman. Not to mention giving him very little to do, but be there for cannon fodder.

Then there’s the police chief, cool on them for making her a woman. It’s common practise now to see a woman in a command role. Unfortunately, she’s just there to serve as a lynch pin in the movie. Nothing hugely important to being a woman in a commanding role, she’s just there to be a bureaucrat that is hiding something.

The villains in the movie, are set up to be the man whom killed Murphy. Then the movie resolves that storyline (Oops, it’s not who we think it is). Even though its more likely that he was, since the movie sets it up that way. Then the movie does that divide from being cool, modern and different to being like the original and says “Nope, he’s not the villain, Michael Keaton is.” With no justification or reason established.

I knew it was coming, since the movie was rehashing the important bits from the Original. I was onboard for most of the movie, until that divide from the murder investigation plot turns into the old plot. The thing is, in the old movie it worked better because we had set up. We have key dialogue sequences between executives talking about how they shifted police forces to have “Ideal candidates” placed in high risk situations to get what they wanted.

We knew that OCP was the bad guy in that movie. This one, we have none of it, we get everything set up to just be about Murphy’s murder and that the major criminal element in the city is his villain. I would’ve accepted that storyline as the main plot, more than them trying to pay homage to the old movie. They could’ve left the Homage to a possible sequel, and made the corporation the bad guy in that one. At least then it would’ve made more sense.

Oh, Samuel L. Jackson is in the movie. Yep, He’s black Bill O’Reilly. I kid you not, I knew that going into the movie. I saw the trailers, and his tie raid at the end of the movie felt so out-of-place, but so in character for the way he’d been playing it. The only reason he was even in that role, was to have that patented “Sam Jackson” badassery on-screen for that small bit. It just doesn’t fit with the theme of “This is the future.” With Samuel L. Jackson’s bits in the movie, that’s the present, technically.

Why do we need to be reminded of Bill O’Reilly if you’re trying to use story about the future, to illustrate how the future is progressing. Is that something to help us relate to the story. Instead of using Murphy’s Humanity like the original does? If so, you failed on that, haha.

I was planning on hating this movie, going into it. As I’d seen reviews for it, some liked it, some hated it. Me being a huge fan of the old continuity, was ready to hate it. Since modern hollywood is nothing but remakes, and small indie films that are pretty good. This is just Meh, it has moments, but overall needs to be spread out more. Hell I could see this movie’s concepts being done in a mini series and it doing better. Give it to HBO and it would be the next Game Of Thrones. I’m not kidding. If they gave it to HBO and turned it into a mini series, it would be awesome.

It’s not horrible, just it needs work. If they want to salvage it I mean. I liked some of the characters, like Gary Oldman’s character, Dr. Norton. I even liked Jackie Earle Haley’s character Mattox. They were the strongest actors in the movie, and it showed.

Even Michael Keaton, enjoyed what he was doing. Even though his character was a bit annoying at times. I consider that more of an intentional thing. Not to mention, Jay Baruchel playing the jittery, marketing guy was good. So the movie has some positives, it just needed to be fleshed out in the ending, and push the corporate enemy story to a possible sequel.

Final thoughts, if you’re curious or an action movie buff, you’ll probably like this movie. You can probably rent it or watch it on Netflix. I just happened to get a DVD copy to watch. It has issues, although it could’ve been avoided or resolved differently. It is not as good as the original, nor is it as brutal. With that, I’ll sign off. I was not hoping for much in this movie, but it was ok. I’ll see you guys on the next one.

I, Frankenstein… the Underworld clone?

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So recently, I managed to watch I, Frankenstein. It is probably the most Underworld movie I’ve seen in a while. Even though it maybe like Underworld’s movies, it’s not done by Len Wiseman or his Wife, Kate Beckinsale. It is almost a clone of the first movie, in the sense that we have 2 opposing forces that are “Hidden” from the human world, battling it out in an ancient and secret war.

Kind of sounds familiar, right? Well how about something that isn’t like either side, but isn’t human. Still sounding the same to you? Now picture Bill Nighy as the leader of one side, that isn’t quite the good guy. Now picture the featured werewolf from Underworld, the one from the trailer, yes that one. Picture him as Nighy’s number 1 henchman.

Still sounding familiar to Underworld? I kid you not, this is such an underworld clone, its silly. Frankenstein’s monster being a gift to humanity from Dr. Frankenstein as the monster possesses the ability to not die of old age, basically live forever.

Now instead of the Werewolves using his blood to make them immune to the effects of silver, there’s a book that Nighy needs to make an army that can’t be killed. Ok, seems logical. As he’s a demon Prince, working to make more indestructible vessels for his kin. The Gargoyle order is led by 2 people, Gideon; the general of the order, played by Jai Courtney from Jack Reacher and A Good Day To Die Hard.

The other is Leonore; the pseudo-queen of the order and albino Gargoyle, that doesn’t fight in the movie (Seriously, she is just there to talk and take up screen time). She is played by Miranda Otto of the Lord Of The Rings The Two Towers and Return Of The King. Seeing her in this movie makes me think “Where’d all your money go from LOTR, that you have to star in an Underworld clone?”

As Sarah Lewis of the Cinema Snob crew put it “It’s a beef cake movie.” We get to see Aaron Eckhart and a bunch of burly men brawl on-screen for an hour and a half. With a half-assed plot put together. You know what the sad thing is with this entire venture? It’s based on a graphic novel! I get that it could be an accurate representation of the comic, but if it isn’t I am still calling it an Underworld Clone. Whether that was intentional or not is another story.

There are too many similarities to Underworld, especially with a good chunk of cast members from the first movie and only 1 of them was a well-known and respected actor. The other two or three were side characters, we didn’t give a sh** about.

Not to mention the hypocritical argument of the movie. “You fought a demon in front of humans. We fight in the darkness.” Ok, let’s analyze this for a moment. Adam (Frankenstein’s monster), fights 1 demon, in an alleyway at night. Only 1 human was present, and it was a cop doing his job, and not being a complete idiot.

The funny part is coming, a few minutes after the lecture to Adam, the gargoyles go out and have a brutal battle involving numerous demons and gargoyles, in the street, outside of their giant church, with people’s apartments all around. Being loud, roaring and big spectacles of light and fire in the streets. So wait, you fight them in darkness, except when the Demons unleash a giant horde on you. What the F*** lady?

That argument bugged me, the logic just escaped me when it happened. I found the movie had decent action, and it’ll probably appeal to people who enjoy gothic art styles and those that enjoy beefcake on-screen. It’s kind of sad that the best acting in the movie is done by Aaron Eckhart, he put more effort into this movie, than everyone else. He didn’t need to, which is kind of odd.

I’m sorry this turned into a rant, but the movie so much a clone. That would’ve made more money when the 3 Underworld movies were being made, than now. Or they could’ve titled it Underworld 4: Frankenstein. No one would’ve cared, it would’ve been just as believable that way.

With that, I’ll sign off, and work on some video editing. Have a good one.

300: Rise Of An Empire

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Hey, so I forgot that this was supposed to be a Side-quell to 300. It’s a movie. Basically Rise Of An Empire explains a little more of Xerxes and his back story. After which, it is before during and after the events of 300. While we had the glorious-ness of Gerard Butler to keep us going in this movie. In this one we have Themistocles, played by Sullivan Stapleton.

Kind of interesting that the writing of the movie states that the entire war is brought about by Themistocles himself. As Xerxes and his father once attacked Athens before, and when Themistocles was merely a solider, he took aim with a bow and arrow, and killed Xerxes’ father. So the entire war is based on revenge, interesting to say the least.

I love pseudo-historical movies based on mythology. Some work, some don’t, the 300 movies work for me. Even though this one has issues. The first movie left me inspired, where as this one is a bit of a bland mess. The movie’s only saving graces are the action scenes, and well Eva Green. The action scenes are good, but sloppy, with relying on CG blood to try to “Enhance” the 3D experience. All it does is make the movie look fake and uninteresting. Although some practical effects exist, just not many.

As I said, the only saving grace is Eva Green and her delivery of a completely insane woman, hell-bent on revenge. Her character, Artemisia is a Greek woman, whom was orphaned by her fellow Greeks, and sold to a slave ship. There she was beaten and raped until she was cast out on the streets of Persia. There she met her mentor, the Persian Emissary, played by Peter Mensah. Here we get the best fight scenes in the movie.

Which show off Artemisia being trained by him to fight as the Persians do. Later on, we see Eva Green light up the screen in both her acting talents and her exhibitionist way of going topless in the movie. It’s nothing new for her, as she filmed a movie completely nude previously.

The movie does set up for a possible sequel, but I doubt it will happen as this one flopped, and rightly so. It took them so long to make this movie, that no one cared to see it. If they had released only a year or two after the first 300 and kept Gerard Butler in for some more scenes, except those from the first movie, it would’ve done better.

Then they could’ve done their pseudo-trilogy with it and made a ton of money. Overall I’d say give it a rent, or a stream on Netflix if you’re either really bored, or into the first movie. This was short I admit, but the movie isn’t that enthusiastic, aside from Eva Green.

I should point out the music is done by Junkie XL, and he does a great job of making good battle music, and he even took the main theme and blended it with the lyrics from Black Sabbath’s War Pigs. It sounds pretty cool, give it a listen on YouTube. There are plenty of videos for it.

With that I’ll sign off and work on the next review.

Godzilla 2014

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Sorry for the long delay, life kind of got in the way for the most part. As the title says, I recently saw Godzilla 2014. Brent and I were curious to see what it was like, so we went on a Tuesday matinée. We did see it in 3D, despite my usual misgivings. Nothing was huge about the 3D in the movie, in fact I barely remember wearing the glasses. The movie just didn’t fully utilize it. In terms of a classic Godzilla formula, the guys over at Legendary Pictures did a fantastic job. The movie has tension, and builds upon it. Godzilla doesn’t even make his first appearance until half way through. It’s mostly about the new monsters, and the humans affected in their wake.

We also get the see Elizabeth Olsen (A sister of the twins), flex her acting muscles with her on-screen husband and lead, Aaron Taylor-Johnson. Both of which we’ll see in Avengers 2: Age Of Ultron as Scarlett Witch and Quicksilver. They also appeared in a cameo as the twins during the credits of Captain America: The Winter Soldier. As such, the human story is rather blah for the most part. Since most people are there for the King of the Monsters himself.

The movie also features the awesome Bryan Cranston. Unfortunately his character is killed off before the end and focuses on his character’s son, Ford (Taylor-Johnson). The only reason Cranston is in the movie, is to play a character that has essentially lost everything after the new monsters, known as the M.U.T.O. (Massive Unidentified Terrestrial Organism). The Muto first appears in Japan, where Cranston’s character is working with his wife.

This just happens to be a Nuclear reactor, that the Muto wants to feed off of. The way it works, is that the Muto feed off of the radiation of the nuclear devices and grow stronger. This also comes to its primary weapon, as Godzilla has his Nuclear Firebreath, the Muto have an EMP Wave. One slam of its electric hoof into the ground, and anything within a 10 mile radius is shut down. I don’t want to completely spoil things for anyone, so I’ll leave things there for the mechanics of the movie.

Godzilla’s fight scenes are epic. When we finally get to him battling the Mutos (Spoiler: there’s 2 of them). He is an aging King Of The Monsters, and the movie does some subtle fan service to remind us of previous movies and tropes. The fights are the big pay off to his building. The trailer makes it seem like the humans are battling him; much like it is during the 1998 “Zilla” movie. I like what they did with this movie, I’ve seen my fair share of the classic movies as well as 2000, and I happen to enjoy this one as much as the old ones.

98’s zilla has its charm, albeit not Matthew Broderick. I’m thankful it got a spinoff cartoon series and his character was rewritten to be less annoying. Not to mention the show was Zilla battling other monsters including Mothra. Which was cool to see a cartoon that had actual monster battles.

I would highly recommend this movie to anyone whom is a fan of the classic Godzilla movies. Give it a rent, buy it or stream it over Netflix. You won’t be disappointed. This is one a few reviews I’ll be writing over the next day or so. I want to get caught up with my blog, so there will be a few more reviews coming. Also more gaming coverage of Left 4 Dead 2. Before I forget, there will also be E3 impressions from the 5 press conferences. With that I’ll sign off, and work on the rest.

Captain America: The Winter Soldier + Agents Of Shield Tie in Review Blog

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So with the way Agents Of Shield ties in to the Marvel universe, none other than Captain America would have a huge impact on the series, with the events of his latest movie. Thor: The Dark World did impact Agents Of Shield, but not very much. It had a guest appearance from Lady Sif. In terms of Cap 2 however, things drastically change on the show. I would suggest before you continue on, go see the movie and watch the episode in question.

The episode is called Turn, Turn, Turn, with Bill Paxton guest starring again. All I can say of the two story lines is that they are very much connected. Everything we’ve seen of the Clairvoyant storyline in Agents of Shield has been building to this moment in the series. Now to diverge from the series and talk about the movie.

Everything is solid, much of the old campy factor from The First Avenger is gone, for a more serious tone, and a more Marvel approach. There is some intrigue, some twists, and one thing I didn’t expect happens. I knew of the comic book tie in that the Winter Soldier story comes from, so that wasn’t a big shock. However, the second and much bigger half of the story to the movie, is huge! I had a chill going into one specific scene where all is revealed and the true villain is detailed.

This is a movie worth seeing, now if you are like me and not willing to pay the full price of admission, go see it in 2D with a matinée. I saw it and didn’t regret it, as the movie does have 3D, I just don’t know how good it is. I’m not a huge fan of 3D, unless a movie is filmed in it. To me post-conversion very rarely works and is distracting. This movie is a great follow-up to The First Avenger and The Avengers, mainly for Cap’s sake. At this point he’s out, and everyone knows he’s alive. So it primarily focuses on him for character development that he hasn’t gotten.

Note: I really enjoy the score, I’m listening to the main theme of the movie as I write this, ha ha.

We do see other characters develop in the movie, but I can’t really discuss them too much without spoiling the movie, so I would recommend stopping here if you haven’t seen the movie or the Agents Of Shield tie in. Alright, from here on in I have to list spoilers in order to highlight why the movie is good and how it shakes the status quo of the Marvel movie universe. This also ties into Agents Of Shield. Cap has been down on his luck, mainly with accepting that he is a man out of his time, and trying to cope with being a soldier in a time of peace.

He decided to take up Shield’s call, and work for them. Unfortunately, things have changed with how espionage and soldiers work in the modern era. Cap has always believed it to be black and white, where as nowadays its very gray. To the point where both he and Fury are worried that the current course of Shield is steeply going into the realm of fear.

Thins begin to spiral out of control of our heroes when Fury is attacked, and removed from the game at play. Cap is soon attacked himself, as the players of the opposite side want to remove him from the board. The movie is definitely a chess game, played by those in power and our Heroes. Cap is attacked and labeled a fugitive by the now corrupt Shield, so he goes on the run with Black Widow and they find allies to help them bring down the corruption.

Then at the key point in the movie, we find out that everything is connected between the Agents Of Shield tv show and the movie, when the corruption is Hydra. When this is revealed, they’re then attacked by Shield/Hydra. They go underground again and find an old friend in waiting, where Cap gives the order and it is an order, that Shield must be dissolved in order to stop Hydra from achieving a strangle hold again.

So, after a giant battle, in which Cap is wearing his old suit, and a cameo from Stan Lee of course, we see Captain America, Black Widow and Nick Fury dismantle Shield permanently right in front of Hydra’s Leader, Alexander Pierce. Played by the supremely awesome and talented, Robert Redford. Granted we see this a mile away, but still its a great flick. Now onto Agents Of Shield.
With the destruction of Shield, all that remains is the rogue agents that are in allegiance with Hydra. Within the show, no one knows whom is Shield and who is Hydra. While the movie is more clear-cut with most of them by showing us who are all Hydra people.

Including one person whom is both in the show and the movie. Agent Sitwell. The reason I divulge all of this is to show how well both work together, but while the movie works on its own, the show does suffer a little bit by leaving out some of the finer details that movie has in place. Which is fine, as the show creates intrigue and turns everyone against each other. Very much like that of The Thing from 1982.

Because Shield is Dissolved, what does that mean to the show? Well in the show we see Paxton is revealed to be Hydra and the Clairvoyant, as such he calls out to his Hydra operatives to turn the situation over on Coulson. He kills shield agents and his captured for his misdeeds. Then we have the ultimate Betrayal by someone on the show, his protegé. Agent Ward reveals that he too is a Hydra operative and kills the guards to release Paxton from custody.

All that remains of Shield is the plane in which Coulson is now on. Completely in the dark as to the dissolving of Shield, and has to keep his team going to continue their mission, despite being now Rogue agents no longer affiliated with the US government. I’m eagerly awaiting the next episode to see where things progress.

Both stories are effective at what they do, Captain America The Winter Soldier for its big scale, and Agents Of Shield for its smaller scale. Now with the title of The Winter Soldier, Bucky (Spoiler) is alive and well, as he is the Winter Soldier, and his story is effective, but not very fleshed out. He is a bigger role in the comics in this story, but plays a side role in the movie. Being the only one to go toe to toe with Cap and beat the living tar out of him. I wish we could’ve gotten more to Bucky, but they might save it for Cap 3. They’ve laid out all the pieces for it in the credits.

Credit sequence: Mid roll spoilers. Marvel must have shelled out big bucks to Fox for this one. We see the Baron known for being a Cap Villain talking to another Hydra operative discussing the future of Hydra. Then we get the atom bomb, he says “The age of heroes is done, now we live in an age of miracles. They did stop our weapons, but we still have The Twins.” Then we see Quicksilver and his twin sister Scarlet Witch. Now for those whom don’t know, the twins are the son and daughter of Magneto.

So Mutants will be entering the crossover soon. Hopefully Fox doesn’t screw it up with Days Of Future past. Although it’s not boding well with posters and behind the scenes stills for Fox’s movie. Although I do like who they got for Cap 2 and Avengers 2 for Quicksilver and Scarlet Witch. One of the Olsen Twins, and the lead actor from the Kick Ass movies. Granted the Olsen Twins’ track record isn’t exactly prestigious, the one chosen could still do a good job. She seemed fine in the cameo in the mid roll for Cap 2.

Then there’s the end cap, Bucky. He stands in the Smithsonian exhibit dedicated to Cap and his comrades. There he struggles with his memory, trying to remember who he was, by staring at the bio on the plaque next to his name. This is why I wish he was more, but I figure they’re saving it for Cap 3.

Now onto trailers: Guardians Of The Galaxy, holy hell does it look good. We see a group of misfits thrown together to make a really good movie, despite everyone crapping on it for being one of the least liked stories in the Marvel universe. Though we had set up for it in Thor 2 with Benecio Del Toro. The trailer looks good, and I’m shocked we have a big supporting role for Dave Batista from the WWE. He plays Drax, and I thought he was great in Riddick, so who knows, maybe it’ll pay off. Then the Amazing Spider-man 2 trailer I’ve seen before, and the trailer for Days Of Future Past. Not much else to remember for trailers.

With that I’ll sign off, and get things prepped for the next review and work on the podcast editing some more. See you guys next time.