Monday, December 30, 2013

Southland Tales - Directors cut?

SPOILER WARNING!!! This post spoils movie Southland Tales (2006).

Southland Tales seems to becoming new Blade Runner with new different cuts. Blade Runner has been released on three different cuts and there is dvd release, that has all three and one extra one. When I started watching Southland Tales from blu ray, I realized quite quickly, that this cut is quite different from one on my dvd. I have no idea, if this version is director's cut or Cannes cut or something else. Blu ray's covers doesn't say this is different cut. I don't remember my dvd telling, it is anything else than regular version. Wikipedia doesn't say for sure, that director's cut was released. If it was, I am pretty sure, one on my blu ray is director's cut.

Because this wasn't the cut I expected and I bought prequel comics, I will change my plans. Yes, this had prequel comics, that told, what happened before the movie and probably will explain, what happens in movie. I will do several Southland Tales posts in near future. I will go through the comics and version on my blu ray. Southland Tales is one of my favourite movies and I think it deserves that kind of treatment. I might do something similar for Blade Runner in more distant future. Both movies deserve that.

Dvd cut was weird and didn't explain many things. Blu ray cut starts with better explanation of the world and what has happened. I don't remember USIDent explained from dvd cut. They were there, but I don't remember their name. Proposition 69 was probably cut away, because I don't remember that either. I may have forgotten something from dvd cut, because I watched it last time some time ago. But I have watched it few times, so I should remember those things.

Blu ray cut had longer versions of scenes and new scenes. I don't remember anything missing from dvd cut. Now everything made more sense, because concepts were introduced better at the beginning. You could concentrate on what is happening, when you didn't have to figure out what everything is. At the moment I can't say which version is better. Not knowing everything made movie more mysterious. Blu ray cut is still mysterious, when we get to ending. Comics may explain that.

Next thursday will be something different. Next Southland Tales post will come after I have finished comics. I am not sure, if I will do post for every part. Comics are first three parts and movie has last three parts. Sorry for those, who expected Southland Tales explained in this post. Those posts will come later.


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Thursday, December 26, 2013

Silent Night Deadly Night Part 2 (1987)

SPOILER WARNING!!! This post spoils movie Silent Night Deadly Night Part 2 (1987).

This movie is known for two things. Half of the movie is footage from first movie and this has the garbage day scene. First 38 minutes are mostly footage from first movie, showing every kill and little character building. I missed in first movie, that Ricky was the kid, that was about to shake hand of Santa before police shot Santa at orphanage. This movie may have cut that scene differently to show that. This is Ricky's story, but first 38 minutes focus on Billy. Ricky just tells events of first movie from his point of view.

After that movie becomes interesting. Ricky is in mental hospital telling his story to Doctor Bloom. He got adopted after Billy was killed. He had fears of nuns and red things. When he grew older, he started killing, when he saw red things and someone doing bad things. Ricky started his serial killer career after seeing man trying to rape his girlfriend. Ricky doesn't kill victim. Victim thanks Ricky and both walk away. Dr Bloom start to feel unease, when Ricky tells killings Dr Bloom didn't know about.

Doctor Bloom wants to know about events that led Ricky to mental hospital. Ricky tells about his only true love Jennifer. This is where movie becomes surreal and has it's best scenes. "Garbage day" clip showed what kind of actor Eric Freeman is. Jennifer scenes take advantage of his over acting and make it work for improving the movie. There is movie theatre scene, which is genius. Ricky and Jennifer are in movie theatre watching movie of event of the first movie. They see trailer for extremely violent movie Chaos. We don't see trailer, but based on what we hear about it, someone should make that movie. When Ricky realizes, the movie tells first movie's story, he goes crazy and leaves. There is loud jerk complaining movie. Ricky kills him and comes back to Jennifer. Jennifer wants to leave, but Ricky wants to stay, because he starts to enjoy the movie.

Next scene. Ricky and Jennifer meets Jennifer's ex-boyfriend, who acts like jerk. Ricky loses his mind and kills the ex. When Jennifer is not happy about that, he kills her too and starts killing spree at neighborhood. Police catches him. He tries to kill himself, but doesn't have any bullets left. We come back to mental hospital and see Ricky has killed doctor Bloom. He escapes the hospital and goes after Mother Superior, who he blames for everything.

Eric Freeman's over acting has made this cult classic. First movie was serious movie. With Eric Freeman, this could not be serious. It feels like original plan was to make serious sequel. If you forget over acting, mental hospital scenes were quite serious and interesting. Movie theatre and killing spree were far from serious. Freeman is not only one over acting. There is one debt collector trying to get Eric Freeman's level and Jennifer's ex tries to compete with the master. This movie is worth watching, if you are into unintentional comedy. Script how ever deserved better execution. Hollywood is doing lot of remakes these days. This could be a good movie to do remake. Original is not that good and story could work in serious movie with good actors.

Monday, December 23, 2013

Silent Night Deadly Night (1984)

SPOILER WARNING!!! This post spoils movie Silent Night Deadly Night (1984).

This movie is infamous for showing Santa Clause killing people. But that is not real reason, why this is infamous. I think, real reason is this movie showing, how Santa myth combined with really bad timing and streight religious mentality, can make kid go crazy. This became one of my favourite horror movies, because this shows, how killer is made and some blame could go to ones, who made him what he became. Movie is quite hard to find. My copy is dutch version, I bought couple years ago. It was only one I could find. It is shame that this has become obscure movie, when this is one of more though provoking slasher movies. It is not just killer killing people creative ways as most other movies in this genre are.

Billy is a normal kid. It is christmas eve and Billy's family is visiting grandpa at mental hospital. When Billy is alone with grandpa, he tells, how Santa Clause punishes everyone, who hasn't been nice all year. You can't do any naughty things. Billy's family's trip is running late. They are driving past bed time. Being up past bed time on christmas eve is naughty thing. Family is stopped by Santa Clause, how just robber store and killed clerk for 31 bucks. Santa kills Billy's parents in front of his eyes.

Billy and his brother is taken to orphanage run by nuns and Mother Superior. Mother Superior believes punishing for everything and teaches Billy, nothing goes unpunished and punishment is absolute. Christmas times are worst for Billy, because he remember, how Santa killed his parents. Billy can't control his actions and is punished for everything. Mother Superior doesn't listen other nuns, who think her way is not the best possible. In orphanage Billy learns, sex is bad thing and anyone having sex should be punished.

When Billy turns 18, he goes working for toy store. Everything goes well until christmas. Christmas decorations make him remember the night Santa killed his parents. Boss tells Billy, he has to be Santa Clause, because regular Santa injured his knee. Billy's view of Santa is little bit different than others. He tells kids, they have to be nice or Santa will punish them. Parents doesn't see anything strange and people think Billy is good Santa. After toy store is closed, owner and employees are having their christmas party. Drunken owner tells Billy he should be doing what Santa does on christmas eve.

When Billy see one of his co-worker trying to rape other co-worker, he turns into what he thinks Santa is. He hangs raping co-worker with christmas lights. When rape victim freaks out, he kills her too and continue to kill every one at store. This is where movie turns into regular slasher movie. There is one scene I like to mention. Billy has just killed two teens for having sex, when young girl sees him. She thinks he is real Santa. Billy asks her, if she has been nice all year. When she replies she has been, Billy gives bloody knife to her. Girl doesn't know what to think, but Billy feels good for himself, because he has acted like Santa. He has punished bad people and given gifts to good people.

Police knows Billy is the killer and he is going to Orphanage. Police shoots wrong Santa at orphanage in front of the kids. Billy comes there later. Kids let him in, because they think he is Santa. He comes to kill Mother Superior. He is shot before he could do that. Billy's younger brother is among kids. He start to call Mother Superior naughty. I am sure, he will turn out to be good kid after seeing police kill two Santas one day, other one of those being his brother.

I planned to make this movie my christmas tradition. This year I had to watch this early to write this post. Maybe next year. This year I could watch heart warming story of what happened to Billy's brother.

Thursday, December 19, 2013

The 12 Disasters of Christmas (2012)

SPOILER WARNING!!! This post spoils movie The 12 Disasters of Christmas (2012).

This is Syfy original. So it is kind of stupid to complain, how stupid this movies is, because that is kind of their trademark. There is audience for this kind of movies. Popularity of Sharknado showed that. I will do Sharknado as soon as I see it. It is still not available here. This genre makes me kind of sad, because all this money and time of everyone involved could have resulted better movie. Sometimes it feels like they are trying to do serious movie. This is not all stupid. Just majority of it is stupid.

Movie cashes on last year's mayan apocalypse. Still remember that? Jayce is having her 18th birthday on 21.12.2012. I live in Europe, so I use european date format. There have been couple signs of apocalypse and after 12th sign it is end of the world. Jayce's grandma realizes, apocalypse is coming after tap water turns red. She gives ring to Jayce. The ring gives marking to Jayce's arm. Grandma is speared by ice spear before, she can tell anything more. After couple other disasters Jayce and her father seek Grandma's old man Grant, who has told Jayce is chosen one, who can save the world. Grant tells them, they have to find five rings around town and then Jayce will know what to do.

There were 12 disasters:

  1. Heatwave

  2. Bird deaths

  3. Red tap water

  4. Raining ice spears. These killed Grandma and at least one other person

  5. Tornado out of nowhere, which killed Jayce's friend

  6. Dome over town preventing anyone from leaving or entering

  7. Freezing mist that freezes everything it touches. It kills Grant and Kane's brother

  8. Earthquakes

  9. Red mist, that makes humans fall into pieces

  10. Strange electricity on metal objects

  11. Geysers. I am not sure, if this is actually one or part of next one. I count it as one to get all 12.

  12. Volcanos erupting

I mentioned Kane's brother. Kane is big man of town, who has connections and want to build shopping mall or something like that. Jayce's father is against Kane and his plans. Kane start to lose his mind after his brother dies. He start to think they have to kill Jayce to prevent end of the world. Kane is best written character in this movie. Better director and better actor would have made him more memorable character. Writer did good job with him. I guess, he had to add all stupidity, because this is Syfy original and everyone expects that.

Mayor was another well written character. He tried to balance between Kane and Jayce's father. After dome covered town, there was potential for some interesting story telling. Only Kane and Mayor reacted to situation on their own ways. Others continued as nothing had happened.

The dog returning at the end. That is so bad cliché, it makes viewers angry. At that point, we had forgotten the dog. The dog could have been left from the movie. Yes, there was build up for dog returning. We saw dog few second before it run away. Characters even wonder, where did it go. That happened same time as Grandma had dramatic moment with Jayce and right before Grandma was impaled by ice spear. There might be reasons why audience don't remember dog being missing, when it comes back at the end. I don't blame writer. Director didn't use material correctly and buried dog running away in middle of more interesting events. I checked what else writer has done. Is resume contains other Syfy original and he teaches writing. That explains why movie stays together as well as it does.

Maybe this wasn't real christmas movie, but it had christmas decorations all over the place and had one christmas song in center of it. How lyrics of that song were connected to events, were never really explained. This isn't the worst Syfy original. It has some good things, but in the end it is Syfy original.

Monday, December 16, 2013

LEGO Batman: The Movie (2013)

SPOILER WARNING!!! This post spoils movie LEGO Batman: The Movie (2013).

This is 200th post of this blog. It is fitting that this post is about Batman movie. I didn't plan to do Batman movie or anything special for 200th post. I just wanted short movie and later realized this will be 200th post.

I didn't expect much from this movie. I am not sure, if this was supposed to make money or was this just Lego advertisement. This was written by someone, who didn't have much respect for characters and who didn't care, if this story continues. There is little build up for sequel, but I don't think it will be Batman movie.

During this movie, Batman and Robin beats Riddler, Catwoman, Bane, Penguin, Harley Quinn, Two-Face, Poison Ivy and few henchmen inside Arkham asylum without breaking sweat. Replace Bane and Poison Ivy with Joker and you get group Batman single handedly beat without breaking sweat. No Lego Batman sequel is planned. Joker and Lex Luthor find and destroy Batcave. No Lego Batman sequel is planned.

Lex Luthor is running for president. When he loses Man of the Year title to Bruce Wayne, he asks Joker for help. Joker needs chemicals for his Joker gas. Because Lex and Joker are criminal, they just can't buy those chemicals. They have to steal them. Probably Lex Corp manufactures those chemical. But no, they have to break into chemical plant and steal those chemicals. I know this was made for kids, but this doesn't have to be stupid.

Because there is Lex Luthor, Superman also has to be there. Superman is guy, who has to always tell how good and great he is and how he always saves the day. That annoys Batman to no end. Batman's only character trait is that he doesn't want any help, especially from Superman. Robin is young boy, who Batman doesn't let do things he want to do.

Movie has too much stuff in it. It is only 70 minutes, but has all the villains I mentioned and whole Justice League. Many of the characters are there only for a little while. Movie doesn't need all these characters. It wastes them. There can't be LEGO Batman movie with only Bane as villain, because this movie made him look so weak. Same goes with most of the villains.

Movie steals lot from other Batman movies. Opening scene is from Tim Burton's Batman. Music is same. Movie also uses legendary Superman theme, which is also elevator music in Lex Luthor's office. There are tons of references to other Batman movies. If you have to watch this for some reason, only entertaining thing to do, is trying to find all of those. Movie tries to be funny. It is funny, if you don't care about Superman or Batman. If Batman and Superman using bus to get to final fight is funny to you, you might find other jokes funny too. Skeleton in chemical plant was kind of funny, but movie didn't have other moments like that.

I don't understand, why this was made and how DC let someone using their characters in this movie. This is such a waste of characters. At beginning of the movie, we see Lex Luthor and Joker killing Batman and Superman. Then we go two days ago and see events leading to this. After movie shows death of Batman and Superman again, we learn that they changed the clothes. Kryptonite didn't kill Batman and Superman wasn't crushed. How Lex Luthor and Joker didn't see that they enemies looked little different from before? That tells everything about the movie. Even characters doesn't know each others.

Scariest thing is that upcoming Superman movie, with Batman and other Justice league members, could be worse than this. At least we will be reading that on message boards, if it is not good enough.

Thursday, December 12, 2013

Moon (2009)

SPOILER WARNING!!! This post spoils movie Moon (2009). This is one of those movies better seen unspoiled. So, if you like scifi and haven't seen this movie, you should watch it before reading this post.

This is quite extreme example of employer not caring for its employers. They make three year contracts to send workers into solitude of far side of the moon. Worker is there alone to maintain machinery, that collects fuel to be sent to earth. What is even more profitable is to use clones. You don't have to pay clone, if you kill him, when contract ends. No-one will blame you for anything, if no-one knows and no-one knows you are using clones.

Clones are programmed to think they are real people working on three year contract. Their body is planned to fail when three-year contract ends. Then they get into hibernation chamber which kills them. After killing, next clone is waken and he starts his scripted life with Earth. To make everything realistic, they have created wife and daughter storyline based on original person's wife and kid. It is told, that clones have implanted memories. Why give clone memories, where he has wife and kid and make him want to get back home? It is like torture. Why they didn't give him memories, which make him happy to on far side of the moon, cut away from rest of the humanity. Or even better, make him think he is part of different kind of society, where his work is honourable thing and make him proud of what he does.

It is not clear to me, why clone even has to be there. During the movie, he didn't do anything machines couldn't do. There was separate team, that fixed the machines, when they malfunctioned. There was intelligent robot, which could manage the communication. Even if they didn't have to pay the clone, they had to provide him with food and stuff. It is interesting, that intelligent robot is only one that thinks clones more that just usable tool. Robot is capable to make its own decisions, when he helps clones instead of reporting clones know they are clones.

This movie missed opportunity to show, what it does to world's economy, when employers want to do things with as little employees as possible. We are currently seeing that tested in western counties. They outsource their work to cheaper countries. I don't remember seeing scifi movies, which studies that. That is kind of missed opportunity in scifi movie genre as whole.

Movie happens on moon. There are only clones and intelligent robot. We don't see much of outside world. Everything we see, we see on monitors, that show pre-recorded videos. This is mainly Sam Rockwell movie with Kevin Spacey voice acting to support him. Sam Rockwell plays the clones, while Kevin Spacey is monotonic voice of intelligent robot. Everyone else has really small roles and we see them only on monitors or in spacesuits. Intelligent robot doesn't look like human and has only small monitor, which shows robot's emotions as smiley faces.

This post may give too negative picture of the movie. It is because movie is not that rewatchable. You get everything interesting first two times. After that you start to spot missed opportunities. I watched this third time now. First two times this is a great movie. After that only good.

Monday, December 9, 2013

Pumping Iron (1977)

SPOILER WARNING!!! This post spoils documentary Pumping Iron (1977).

This is first documentary I have written about. I didn't plan to do this post, but when I watched the movie, I had to write about it. This was shot before Arnold Schwarzenegger became movie star and has gained cult movie status after he starred Terminator (1982) and Conan the Barbarian (1984). Without Arnold's success in movies, this would have been obscure bodybuilding documentary. Another main player in this documentary is Lou Ferrigno, who is best known from 70's Hulk tv-series.

Documentary follows Arnold, Lou and few another bodybuilders as they train and compete in 1975 Mr. Olympia and Mr. Universe. Arnold has won five Mr. Olympia titles and is going for his sixth title before retiring. Lou is young challenger, who has won Mr. Universe twice and is now going for big price. Arnold is shown as cold calculating guy, who is ready to do anything to win. He brags, how he could give bad advises for his friend and tells, how he didn't let his father's death affect his training. It mattered as much as someone stealing his car would matter. Nothing.

Lou is regular family boy, who is trained by his father. Lou is not that much into mind games. He just trains to be the best and believes that it is enough. If you want to see good vs evil battle here, Lou is the good guy and Arnold is villain. I think this is Arnold's best villain role. Main part of movie is build around Lou and Arnold. But reality didn't co-operate with film makers. Lou and Arnold didn't finnish first and second. During competition we see briefly Serge Nubret, who became second in competition. He also had film career.

Best part of movie is Arnold telling his philosophy. It is something he wouldn't say today. Probably he has changed his philosophy since. Here he is young bodybuilding superstar living in the world, where everyone around him thinks he is greatest thing ever existed. During competition we see how Arnold plays mind games with another competitors. He is mentally above the rest of the competitors. He is biggest bodybuilding star ever and he knows that. And others know that too. That is why he wins this competition.

Movie begins with Mr. Universe competitors. That is not as interesting as parts with Lou and Arnold. This part follows amateur body builder Mike Katz, who becomes fourth in competition. Competition is won by Ken Weller, who movie shows as jerk, who makes pranks to others to make them lose their concentration. Mr. Universe part end into emotional scene in which Mike Katz goes to congratulate Ken, who hide his shirt during the competition. We don't see them meeting. We see Mike waiting  Ken to come from stage. Good guys don't win in this movie, because this is documentary.

This is good documentary, but only reason we still know it, is that Arnold Schwarzenegger is in it.

Thursday, December 5, 2013

Solaris (2002)

I bought this movie right after I returned rented version. I watched movie four times during first two days and have watched it many times after that. I own original score soundtrack and it is one of my favourite soundtracks. I have watched movie few times with commentary. So this might be fan boy post.

When I bought this I had more time and often watched movies with commentary on. Lately I haven't done that as much. This movie had one of the best commentaries. Director Steven Soderbergh and producer James Cameron talk about choices Steven did and movie making as whole. It is like lecture about movie making from two big name directors. I recommend to check that out, if you have  dvd.

Big problem is, there is no blu ray version of this movie. Movie is one of the most beautiful movies ever made, but it doesn't have blu ray release. Every shot is carefully planned. You could take any frame of the movie and put it on the wall. Movie moves slowly and have lot of silent moments. It is almost like watching moving painting. Music increases alien otherworldly feeling. This is all about emotion and mood.

"I could tell you what's happening, but I don't know if it would really tell you what's happening." That quote describes this movie perfectly. Movie doesn't give explanations and doesn't tell you, how you should interpret what happened. It begins as mystery of what happened on space station orbiting around mysterious planet Solaris. We see what happened, but we still don't know what actually happened. But what happened doesn't matter at that point. What matter is how our characters react to what happened. Crew of space station acts crazy. When we see what happened to them, their actions doesn't seem so crazy. It is like slow trip into craziness.

Whole story could be told in few sentences. But that would leave so much away. This movie uses so much images and sounds in story telling, that the story is hard to put into words. Movie has two stories. First is mystery of what happened on space station. Second is difficult love story between our hero and his wife. For some there is too much of first. For some there is too much of second. For others this is perfect mix of scifi and drama. You need to be in right state of mind to fully appreciate this movie. It is slow, sad and beautiful. You need to be in mood for that kind of movie.

This is rather another movie adoption of Stanislaw Lem's Solaris, than remake of Tarkovsky's Solaris (1972). I haven't read the book. I like both movies. It is bit strange that Tarkovsky's version has blu ray release and this doesn't have. Tarkovsky's version deserves it, but so does this.

I will revisit this movie later. Then there will be spoilers. That could be anniversary post or celebration of blu ray release. I hope it will be the blu ray. This time I just wanted to tell you this movie exists.

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

"Star Trek" (2009) - nitpicking and stuff

SPOILER WARNING!!! This post spoils movie “Star Trek” (2009).

I wanted to keep original post inside reasonable length. I had to drop lot of random stuff from it, but I wanted to write about that too. So here is more from "Star Trek". This goes more into nerdy territory.

Using shuttles to go to Enterprise didn't make much sense. There is no point using them, when you can transport people from one place to another. They used shuttles in Star Trek The Motion Picture. In that movie, they had real reason to do that. Enterprise's transporters malfunctioned and they didn't have time to fix them. In this movie, there was no reason given, why they used shuttles to go to Enterprise. Shuttles were used for getting similar scene that was in Star Trek The Motion Picture. In Star Trek The Motion Picture Doctor McCoy told how he didn't like transporters. In "Star Trek" Fake McCoy tells how he doesn't like shuttles. Why he doesn't use transport, if he is afraid of shuttles?

Captain Pike was Captain of Enterprise in pilot of original Star Trek. He made return into Star Trek in two-part episode The Menagerie. In that episode he was in wheelchair. At the end of "Star Trek" he is in wheelchair, but movie doesn't give any reasons, why he was in wheelchair. Nero used similar parasites that Khan used in Wrath of Khan. Maybe these parasites hurt victims more, but movie doesn't explain it. So no real explanation was not given why Pike was in wheelchair.

Movie showed how Vulcans didn't think humans as their equals. Fake Spock's human mother being with Vulcan High Council didn't make much sense. Spock's father was part of council. Spock got high council from their cave. I don't remember other high council members having their families with them. So why Spock's mother was with Vulcan High Council?

How Nero knew he killed Fake Kirk's father? He knows Kirk from his future, but there was no reason, why he should know, he killed Fake Kirk's father. Kobayashi Maru scene was told in Wrath of Khan. What this movie added, was to make Kirk look like total jerk. In Wrath of Khan cadet didn't know Kobayashi Maru was no win situation. In this movie every one seem to know it was no win situation. If they didn't know it before, Fake Kirk's hearing made that sure. Knowing that test is no win situation makes the test kind of useless, because you know you are going to lose anyway and don't put too much effort into it.

Monday, December 2, 2013

"Star Trek" (2009)

SPOILER WARNING!!! This post spoils movie "Star Trek" (2009).

I didn't realize, how much Star Wars this movies has first time I saw it. Now it looks more like Star Wars than Star Trek. What is annoying, is that, this is actually good scifi action movie. But this is not Star Trek. This is almost everything, that is not Star Trek and nothing that is Star Trek. J.J. Abrams told, he didn't like original Star Trek and that shows. Movie doesn't get spirit of Star Trek. This is more like application to get to direct Star Wars. As we now know, that worked for J.J. Abrams. He left Star Trek as soon as he got to do Star Wars.

Star Trek is intellectual science fiction. It is not about action. Problems are solved by coming up with good ideas, not with muscles and fire power. Stories show interesting concepts. Original Star Trek, my second favourite tv series, had interesting dynamics between main characters. Doctor McCoy was all about emotion. Spock was for cold logic without emotion. Kirk was somewhere in the middle, using both emotion and logic. McCoy and Spock were friendly rivals. Spock was there to show, how illogical human activities some times are. His role was given to Data in Next Generation and Seven of Nine in Voyager. Those are best characters in Star Trek franchise.

In "Star Trek", Fake Kirk is born, when his mother escapes from spaceship, that his father flies in to enemy ship. Then we see how young Fake Kirk escapes police and destroys sport car in process. Fake Spock in introduced fighting vulcan kids. Then Fake Kirk get into bar fight with four cadets. Fake Spock shows his rebellious side in Vulcan by choosing Star Fleet instead of Vulcan science academy. Fake Kirk is someone, who always gets into trouble and wastes his talent. Fake Spock can't control his temper. Fake McCoy is divorced drunk, who bends rules and use medicine unsafely. Our three heroes aren't same characters, that made them so good in original series. They don't have same chemistry. Now Fake Kirk and Fake Spock are rivals and McCoy is there by Kirk's side. They are rivals because they have different opinions on how they should act in different situations. They don't represent different world views like McCoy and Spock did in original series. If there is main difference between them it is, that Fake Spock wants to go by the rules, when for Fake Kirk end justifies the means.

Story doesn't have any interesting points. It is just angry romulan getting his revenge. He has planet destroying weapon. He uses that to destroy one of main characters home planet. Our heroes barely escape first encounter with villains. There is ice planet, where our heroes have to fight strange monsters. Villains go to destroy another planet. This time our heroes are prepared. Two of them go inside enemy ship. Final battle is fought inside and outside of enemy ship. During final battle Enterprise comes out of nowhere to save one of our heroes' ship, just before villains are destroying it. Enemy ship is destroyed and our hero gets medal for his actions in final battle.

Does that sound familial? Inside enemy ship, there are platforms, that make no sense. Final battle is fought on those platforms. One of main characters uses his sword in fight on platform high above planet. I don't know how to describe Fake Scott's assistant, other than saying he could be in Star Wars and you would not notice anything strange. He would be more at home in Star Wars than in Star Trek. Half of elements are from Star Wars and other half from Star Trek. Designs and names are from Star Trek, story and tone from Star Wars. Every character is made to look stupid at one point and they don't act like they should. There is too much pointless action for action's sake.

Star Trek was thinking man's science fiction. This movie turned it into generic stupid action science fiction. All things good in Star Trek were stripped in this movie.  This was made for average stupid movie goer. Intellectual stuff is over their head. Explosions and action is what sells the tickets. Star Trek is not like that but "Star Trek" is. I wish good science fiction would sell better. Great science fiction movies are still made, but they are hard to find, because these kind of movies get all the publicity.

Why I hate this movie? I hate this, because it took Star Trek away from us, who like intellectual science fiction and made it generic action fantasy. When I say I am a fan of Star Trek, I have to mention that I mean original Star Trek, not this J.J. Abrams version. This is good action movie, but I hate what it does to franchise I like. I haven't seen Star Trek Into Darkness. I don't want to support latest Hollywood trend of using popular titles' names and turning them into something other than original material was. That is why I haven't seen World War Z. I will write about both movies, when I can see them without paying extra to see them.

Thursday, November 28, 2013

Bitch Slap (2009) revisited

SPOILER WARNING!!! This post spoils movie Bitch Slap (2009).

Bitch Slap was first movie I wrote about. That post is quite terrible. I didn't have routine and couldn't write that well. Not to say I can do that now. It felt like good idea to revisit the movie for one year anniversary. It was not. I couldn't watch it with one sitting. I had to have a break at half way point. This movie doesn't deserve revisit, but because I watched it again, here it is.

This movie has Kevin Sorbo, Lucy Lawless and Renée O'Connor. You know, Hercules, Xena and Gabrielle from Hercules' and Xena's tv shows. Kevin Sorbo has little screen time. Lucy Lawless and Renée O'Connor have blink-and-you-miss them roles. I didn't see Lucy Lawless or Renée O'Connor first time I watched this. It would have been interesting to see these three together. It would have made this movie better.

I didn't have to have break first time, because I wanted to see how the story goes on. It has too much stupid plot twists. Those are only thing, that can make you watch this. You may want to see, where this goes to. But it is not worth the time. This time I knew, where this goes and there was nothing interesting. Women are hot and slow motions have some entertainment value. But if I want to see something like that, I can watch something, where women have even less clothes. Those movies have same level of acting than this and less violence. There are better movies, If I want to see violence.

This is like exploitation movie without exploitation. Cheap movie with cheap effect. Bad acting, bad dialog and stupid story. Exploitation movies try to hide that, with showing something, you don't see in normal movies. This movie doesn't dare to show anything. This has slow motion scenes, where exploitation movies have exploitation. Best word to describe slow motion scenes is naughty.

When you have story with major twists, you give clues during movie. When people watch movie again knowing the twist, they can see the clues and that makes movie even better. Does this movie do that? No. There are nearly no clues of any plot twists before twist is revealed. When you watch this movie again, characters' actions doesn't make sense. You can see main plot twist from miles away, if you have seen one certain movie. There were some clues for that, but character's actions don't make any sense, when you know the truth.

I have to think something else for next year. Maybe something I actually like.

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

One Year Anniversary

One year ago I started this blog. I had one movie blog before this, but it didn't live past first few posts. This is first that got going. One reason is that Netflix finally came to Finland and now I have enough movies to write about. Before I only had my movie collection and rented movies. Before starting this, I started writing reviews to Netflix and IMDB. Then one of my colleagues told about her blog and I got idea to start blog, where I don't have to worry about spoiling. I try not to spoil too much. Sometime I succeed in that. Sometimes I spoil too much without giving new point of view or anything else. Sometimes I just have to spoil the whole movie to make my point. I try to leave something unspoiled, if I can say what I wanted without telling everything.

One reason, why this blog is this way, is that I miss Finnish Babylon 5 community. There was Finnish Babylon 5 community containing message board and few web sites living on schedule Babylon 5 was shown in Finnish television. After episodes, they were analysed episodes and community members speculated, what will happen in future episodes. There was policy of not talking about  episodes not yet shown in Finland. Episodes shown in Finland were totally spoiled in community. This community is one reason, why I think Babylon 5 is the best tv series ever. I have watched it few times without community and it is still works.

I try to balance analyzing and not spoiling too much. Obviously, I can't go as much analyzing as Babylon 5 community did. Those using the sites and message board knew what the deal was. Someone coming to this blog is may want spoiler free material or at least doesn't want to be totally spoiled. With Doctor Who's 50th anniversary, I got some of that Babylon 5 community feeling again. I could follow international discussions without spoiling. I won't be able to see chirstmas special when it is aired first time. So that was only for that one time.

My HBO Nordic rants have been most popular posts of this blog. Last week I saw news, how it is getting only fraction of subscribers and daily users of that of Netflix or ViaPlay in Sweden. I assume situation is similar in Finland. I think we have same streaming services in Finland as they have in Sweden. HBO Nordic messed they launch and they still haven't catched others. HBO Nordic have their advantage that they show their episodes same time all around the world, but that doesn't seem to matter to customers. Or they gave so bad first impression that customers doesn't want to give them second change.

I have more than enough to watch in Netflix and ViaPlay. I checked HBO Nordic site for this this post. Selection of movies is quite limited. Series selection is much better. But for me there were only few series that I want to watch and few that I may want to watch, if I gave them change. HBO Nordic feels like good additional streaming service, when you could do fine with only Netfilx or ViaPlay. From this perspective it is strange that HBO Nordic is most expencive of the three. I might give HBO Nordic change in future. If their movie selection doesn't change much, one or two months could be enough to watch everything interesting and then you can cancel your subscription.

After HBO Nordic rants comes my Ninth Legion posts. For those posts I had to do some studies, because movies were based on real history. Roman army had ninth legion, that just disappeared from historical references. First it was there, then it wasn't and there was never ninth legion again. Historians today don't know what happened to them. I think my ninth legion posts get people, who are interested in history, rather than people, who are interested in movies. I didn't start to do other movies based on history, because I am not into that kind of movies. I might do other similar posts, if I find correct movies. The 300 Spartans and 300 could be suitable movies. No promises yet. Those kind of post take more time than my regular posts, but they tend to get more hits too.

Some people celebrate number of posts or episodes. I chose to celebrate years for two reasons. This is blog that have regular schedule and I don't want to count trailers as posts. This post is 188th post. This blog has gone past 100 posts even, if you take trailers out of that number. Counting years is easier and better in this situation.

I have no big plans for future. There will be themes. Even theme months, if I got enough material. Around christmas there will be few christmas themed movies. No other themes are planned at the moment. I try to do Star Trek episodes I promised some time in future. Now that I ended Doctor Who Thursdays, I may start Star Trek Thursdays. Before that I want to do some movies.

On my Green Lantern post, I told, how movie made me want to check the comics. I did check them. I started from first issue of New 52. New 52 is relaunch of every DC comics, that happened two years ago. Now I have read every Green Lantern comic of New 52. Until latest issue, those have been best DC material I have read excluding special releases like Dark Knight returns and Red Son. Latest issue is first one after Lights Out event and may suffer from start of new story lines. I bought the Spider-man comic, which have that Gwen Stacy story. I had to buy physical copy, because I couldn't buy electronic version. When Amazing Spider-Man sequels come, I can check how faithful they are to original story.

I talked earlier how I wanted to watch Stargate. I got to half way of first season and then it started to feel like work. I didn't like the politics of Stargate unit and rest of the army. The world of Stargate is interesting enough. I don't want to watch, how people on earth argue, who will control the stargate. I may give it a second try and try to watch it on slower pace until it feels interesting again.

Doctor Who's 50th anniversary episode was first tv program in years, I watched, when it was aired. Live sport programs excluded. I also recorded it and have seen it three times already. I still think it is best Doctor Who story. It had so much little presents for whovians, that it is amazing how good the story was. There were dozens of little things, like lines of dialog from older episodes, but it all worked in a way, it didn't feel forced.

I think that was all for this post. Thanks for reading my blog and I hope you continue to enjoy it in future too.

Monday, November 25, 2013

Doctor Who - The Day of the Doctor (2013)

"Hello sweetie, spoilers..."

Wow! Just wow! This was made for Doctor Who fans. Others won't understand, why this episode is so cool. In Doctor Who time is a big ball of wibbly wobbly timey wimey stuff. It doesn't move linear from cause to effect. That is why all The Doctors could have made calculations for saving Gallifrey and never remember doing so. And that is why we whovians can like this episode, even when there are such a continuity errors in this episode. There was convenient memory loss explained, but to do the calculation, they had to know, what they were doing before the memory loss.

That could have been left out of the episode. It was there to give something for fans of classic Doctor Who. Three Doctors could have done that like they did with sonic screwdrivers earlier. Or it could have been four Doctors with 12th coming from the future. We did see few seconds of Peter Capaldi's Doctor. Another present for whovians. A little teaser of things to come, but not actually showing, what he will be looking like.  There was rumour that Peter Capaldi would be in this episode. That turned out to be true.

Presents didn't end there. There was rumor that one of the classic Doctors would appear. All of them were there in archive footage and in CGI. But most liked classic Doctor Who actor Tom Baker had role in this episode. Another wibbly wobbly timey wimey thing in big picture, but this was 50th anniversary episode and party full of presents for whovians, rather than episode which takes itself too seriously. It was serious, if you don't count presents to whovians. I don't want to rant about presents. They were cool and I can live with fact, that they didn't make much sense in big picture. I think Tom Baker was coolest thing in the episode. He was longest running Doctor and most popular one with David Tennant. There were presents too numerous to mention in this post. And it was cool.

I feared, I couldn't enjoy this episode fullest, because I haven't seen last season and this would be filled with action. Latter fear was because of trailers. Neither thing happened. This episode didn't require knowledge of last season and I think, you could enjoy this without knowing Doctor Who. You would miss all the stuff I told earlier, but you could enjoy the episode. Action was at regular Doctor Who level and mood didn't went too dark even during time war scenes.

Episode happened during the last day of Time War. The day when Doctor destroyed both Daleks and Time lords. Doctor is starting ultimate weapon, when interface of weapon shows, what are the consequences of his actions. He will meet tenth and eleventh Doctor. This meeting and their adventure together doesn't change mind of Doctor. But it makes tenth and eleventh Doctor to realize, Doctor didn't have any other change. Tenth and eleventh Doctor came to share the burden of Doctor and press the button.

Clara talks eleventh Doctor out of it. Eleventh has had longest time to think about this and he has idea, how they could save the Gallifrey and time lords, if they change time. They will freeze Gallifrey in time and that would make Daleks firing each others when they try to destroy it. Doctors have made calculations to freeze Gallifrey from first Doctor to 12th Doctor. When 12th Doctor comes, their plan succeed. I think, it will be 12th Doctor, who saved the Gallifrey since he had latest calculations. I think, all this will be explained during 12th Doctor's run. There is only christmas special left for 11th Doctors run. So all this was set up for 12th Doctors run. As christmas special will probably be too.

This episode changed the playing field. Since relaunch, Time War and Doctor killing Daleks and Time Lords, was defining factor of Doctor's run. Time War is still there, but now it has ended differently. What happened to time lock and how things have changed because ending is different now? How many Daleks survive and what they do now? This builded hype for christmas special and 12th Doctor's run. I am again excited about Doctor Who. That wasn't always the case during eleventh Doctor's run.

There was no Captain Jack Harkness, ninth Doctor or Timothy Dalton.There were rumors of Captain Jack being there, but we only got mention of him and saw one of his devices. It was informed earlier that ninth Doctor wouldn't be there. He would have fitted the story, but he would have changed the dynamics. As Captain Jack would have done. Tennant and Smith had great dynamics. This was best performance from Matt Smith I have seen. I waited Timothy Dalton, because he was leading Time Lords during the Time War. He was in one special episode, where Time Lords tried to break free from time lock.

This is now my favourite Doctor Who story. It is worthy of 50th anniversary episode. I have to find analyzes of this episodes. I want to know, why one character had fourth Doctor's scarf. Is the actress related to Tom Baker? Episode had so much presents for whovians that I definitely have missed some of them.

Spoiler warning is stolen from Geeks of Doom. It was so clever, I had to use it myself too.

Thursday, November 21, 2013

Doctor Who - The Beast Below (2010)

SPOILER WARNING!!! This Post spoils Doctor Who episode The Beast Below (2010)

I am not biggest fan of 11th Doctor's run. It goes too weird for me at times. It has great episodes like this one and then something you could call fever dreams. Matt Smith is not the problem. Stories are. This is the second episode with 11th Doctor and his new companion Amy Pond. Doctor came to meet Amy night before her wedding and they left to adventure time and space.

On their first adventure, they enter to Starship UK. Starship UK contains population of Great Britain. They have escaped deadly solar flames. On ship Doctor sees something is wrong. There is girl crying and everyone ignores her. There are Smilers everywhere. Smilers are smiling robots, who sit in booths and follow what is going around them. When they see something they don't like, they change their face to unhappy face. If that doesn't help, they change their face to angry face. If that doesn't help, they rise from booth and stop what they don't like.

Amy is taken into voting booth. There she is told the truth about Starship UK. After knowing the truth she has to choose either to forget or protest. Doctor finds Amy watching video, where she ask herself to take Doctor away from Starship UK and not to investigate Starship. Doctor has realized earlier, that Starship UK doesn't have any engines and it shouldn't be moving. Doctor wants to learn the truth and he hits Protest button. Floor below them opens and they are dropped into large creature's mouth. Every five years everyone has to vote. Those who choose Forget, can continue their lives. Those who protest are fed to large creature.

During their escape Amy and Doctor meet Liz 10, the queen of Starship UK. Liz doesn't have to vote and the truth is not told to her. She has tried to find that out. Liz, Amy and Doctor go to The Tower, where truth is revealed to them. Whole Starship UK is build on top of the last star whale and  whale is steered by torturing it. They learn that queen has to vote too. Her choices are forget and abdicate. Doctor loses his cool. He understands why Amy choose to forget. Amy didn't want to make Doctor to choose between humans and space whale. Doctor's choise is to make star whale brain-dead so it can't feel pain. Amy put pieces together and realizes star whale wanted to help all along. She forces the queen to press Abdicate. For moment that seems like end of Starship UK but soon everything comes back to normal with exception. that they are now moving faster than before. People realize, that they don't have to torture star whale. It helps them because it wants to help.

11th Doctor makes decisions without listening others. Sometimes his decisions are bad ones and there are consequences he didn't meant or doesn't like. Sometimes his friends help and stop Doctor before it is too late. Sometimes they are not able to do that. I like that Doctor is fallible. This may be build up for 50th anniversary where he has to face his biggest choice, which killed both Daleks and Timelords.

This will be last Doctor Who post for some time. I wanted to introduce Doctor Who before 50th anniversary and I have now done that. Doctor Who Thursdays will return later. I will do my 50th Anniversary episode post next monday. Next week is one year anniversary of this blog and I have something special for  Wednesday and Thursday. That is why Doctor Who gets monday next week. Doctor Who's 50th Anniversary episode is shown next saturday at same time all around the world. I don't know how it is in other countries. In Finland it shown on public channel. I recommend watching it if you have a change.

Monday, November 18, 2013

The Amazing Spider-Man (2012)

SPOILER WARNING!!! This post spoils movie The Amazing Spider-Man (2012).

I liked Sam Raimi's Spider-man trilogy. Even the third film. I hoped it would get sequels. I was very disappointed to learn that Spider-man would be rebooted. Spider-man 3 was released 2007. This came 2012, which felt too soon. I know superhero movies are selling well at the moment and Spider-man 4 wasn't at top of the list for Sam Raimi or Tobey Maguire. At least that is the rumor I hear last. Even when Spider-man 4 was not coming, this came too soon after Spider-man 3. It is hard for me to say, this is better than Sam Raimi's Spider-man movies. Only thing worth complaining is, that Peter takes his mask off too easily and too many people know he is Spider-man. Even Aunt May seems to know, he is Spider-man.

Movie tells origin story of Spider-man once again. But this time it doesn't follow comics too faithfully. That was good choise. Death of uncle Ben makes more sense now. First it felt, we have to wait for Spider-man too long. But that was to make us feel for these characters. Peter is not yet Spider-man. He have just got his powers and tries to figure out what to do with them. Ben and Peter had fight and Ben was looking for Peter, when robber shoots him. Peter could have stopped the robber earlier, but let him go because he didn't like shop owner. Nothing larger than life like in Sam Raimi's Spider-man. This is more realistic and down to earth.

Villain of this movie is The Lizard. Lizard was rumoured to be in Spider-man 4. That would have been downgrade in villains. Lizard is good villain for origin story. He is not one of Spider-man's iconic villains and doesn't take too much focus from origin story. I guess writers took lesson from Batman Begins and didn't put any of big guns in first movie. Like in Batman Begins, we are hinted that iconic villain will make appearance in next movie.

This time love interest is Gwen Stacy, who was Peter's one true love before Mary Jane. I don't know how faithfully movies follow Gwen Stacy's story from comics. If they do, build up for the thing she is remembered most, started in this movie. And that made me wait for next movie more than anything else in this movie. Yes, there was mystery surrounding Peter's parents. Peter's father worked with Dr Connors for Oscorp. Then one night they had to go away and leave Peter to May and Ben. Dr Connors continued to work on their project and is later turned into The Lizard because of it. But Gwen Stacy, if they follow the comic story, it will be really big thing in blockbuster movie. As it was in comics when it happened.

I started to watch this movie to write post on why this movie shouldn't have been made and now I am building hype for sequels. It was that good, but I think it suffers from coming so soon after Sam Raimi's Spider-man trilogy which was quite popular.

Saturday, November 16, 2013

The Night of the Doctor

Doctor Who 50th anniversary prequel/teaser/call-what-ever-you-want. The Doctor in this is eight Doctor. We never saw him transforming into ninth Doctor. This mini episode explains why.

Thursday, November 14, 2013

Doctor Who - The Fires of Pompeii (2008)

SPOILER WARNING!!! This Post spoils Doctor Who episode The Fires of Pompeii (2008).

This was regular Doctor Who episode, until it was announced that Peter Capaldi will be 12th Doctor. After that I promised to do this episode. Now I will do that. Peter Capaldi is not only actor, who became regular Doctor Who actor. Karen Gillan, who will later be Amy Pond, companion of 11th Doctor, has also role in this episode. She uses so much face paint and has so small part, that you miss her, if you don't know she is in this. This episode could be written into 12th Doctor story, if writers want to do that. I don't think that was planned, but some times writers get lucky.

Doctor Who and his companion Donna Noble travel to Pompeii one day before the volcano day. When they realize that, they decide to leave, because this is fixed point in time and there is nothing they can do about it. Street merchant has sold Tardis to 12th Doctor and they have to stay little bit longer. Peter Capaldi's character is not called 12th Doctor. It is totally different character. Or is it? You could make that character into 12th Doctor, who has totally lost his memory and started to live regular life in Pompeii. For that reason I call him 12th Doctor. I want to be able to say "I told you so", if they really make Peter Capaldi's character in this episode to 12th Doctor. Him buying Tardis is only hint about tha,t if you don't count, that Doctor saves him in the end and one shot, where Doctor holds hands with 12th Doctor.

Doctor and Donna start to realize something is wrong. Every oracle can tell the truth, but none of them can tell something will happen next day. Oracles tell who Doctor and Donna really are, but they don't know anything about volcano day. Arms of oracles have started to turn into stone. One oracle has started to make alien technology from marbles. Donna tries to tell people that volcano will erupt next day. This annoys Sisters of Sibylla enough to make them kidnap her. Doctor follows them and they meet high priestess of sisterhood. She has completely turned into living stone. She tells that the Pyroviles control the citizens.

Doctor and Donna escape into Mount Vesuvius. There they find out that the Pyroviles plan to turn earth into their new home planet. This would mean end of the world for humans. Then they realize why oracles can't see volcano erupting. The Pyroviles use volcano's energy and that prevents volcano erupting. Doctor has to make hard decision. He has to make the volcano to erupt and destroy Pompeii to save the rest of the world. Oracles see how future changes when Doctor pulls the lever. When they escape the eruption, Donna talks Doctor into saving someone. Doctor comes back and saves 12th Doctor and his family. While watching the destruction 12th Doctor invents word volcano.

If Peter Capaldi's character is 12th Doctor, why oracles didn't say anything about that? Oracles told things that will happen in season finale. There is way to explain that. If the Pyroviles thought 12th Doctor was not threat to them, they may want to keep it that way by not telling him he is 12th Doctor.

This was 4th season episode as was Midnight. Both had hints for season finale. Makes me wonder, should I watch whole season to find all hints I have missed earlier. Next week however is time for 11th Doctor. If I counted correctly, week after that I could write about 50th anniversary. I should be able to see it same time as it is aired around the world.

Monday, November 11, 2013

The One (2001)

SPOILER WARNING!!! This post spoils movies Timecop (1994) and The One (2001).

The One is Jet Li's Timecop. Both movies have highly regulated technology and someone wants to use it for their own advantage. Both movies have policing agency, whose agents travel between version of worlds. In both movies hero's wife is killer in their bedroom, while hero is outside watching it happen. In both movies hero ends up into world, where the wife is still alive. And most of all both are scifi movies with martial arts actionmovie star in leading role. Plus in both movies, there are two versions of hero. Who ever wrote the script, have seen Timecop. You can find my Timecop posts following Timecop tag.

In Timecop technology was time travelling. In this it is travelling between different universes. There are 125 different universes in multiverse and in everyone, there is different version of you. When one version of you is killed in one universe, his energy is given to other versions of you. There are different hypothesis on what happens, when there is only one version of you. Yulaw is determined to find out the truth. He has killed 123 different versions of him and got extraordinary abilities. There is still one to go, Gabe in universe much like ours. I say much like ours, because in that universe George W. Bush talks about universal healthcare like it is a good thing.

Unlike in Timecop, our hero is not working in agency, that travels between world. This time he is Gabe, regular police officer, who doesn't know anything about multiverse. That role is given to Jason Statham. This is first movie, where Jet Li and Jason Statham are together. Jason Statham is rookie multiversecop hunting Yulaw with his mentor. If multiversecops have to kill Yulaw, they have to kill Gabe too. There can't be only one version of person. How this haven't happen before is quite strange. Are every version of person dying same time, if they are dying on old age? Does the life style change anything? Or is the energy so low at old age, that it doesn't make big change? Movie doesn't bother to explain these questions. It is like same matter can't occupy same space stupidity in Timecop.

Movie doesn't use multiverse as much as it could have used it. It begins in universe where Al Gore won the election. Most of the movie happens in universe where George W. Bush won the election and then there is multiversecop's universe, that is like future world. Some actors play different roles in different universes. But that is almost all we got from multiverse. It is good thing that this technology is made hard to use. You have to be in certain place at certain time, if you want to travel to different universe. Unless you are in multiversecop's universe, where only the time matters.

Ending doesn't make much sense. It was told that there are different hypothesis what happens, when there is only on version of person, The One. Destruction on universe was mentioned and The One becoming god was mentioned. If there are these kinds of possibilities, then why multiversecops sent Yulaw to prison planet, where other inmates wanted to kill him or at least hurt him. They were ready to send Gabe to his universe, where he could have been given life in prison or death sentence for crimes Yulaw did. Multiversecops wanted to sent them to great danger. If other dies, other would become The One. It doesn't make sense that multiversecops sent them to universes where they can't be followed and other one killed when other one dies.

Thursday, November 7, 2013

Doctor Who - Midnight (2008)

SPOILER WARNING!!! This Post spoils Doctor Who episode Midnight.

As I told earlier, this is my favourite Doctor Who episode. This is clearly filler episode. Small, simple set and few actors. Probably didn't take much time to shoot. This came just before season finale. Being filler in Doctor Who doesn't mean a bad episode. This episode shows what good director can do with good script and good actors. You don't have to spend lots of money to make good tv or movie. I planned to do this during october, because this is one of my favourite horror stories. It still works after I have seen this several times.

Midnight is leisure planet, where light makes outside lethal to any life forms. People has to be protected from light all the time. Doctor takes shuttle to see sapphire water wall. His companion Donna doesn't want to take four hour shuttle ride to there and another four hour back. Regular route to waterfall is blocked and shuttle has to take detour. Passengers get to know each others. Everything is fun and games until shuttle stops. This should never happen. Passengers start to freak out. Doctor, Hostess and Dee Dee, one of the passengers, try to calm others down.

When passengers calm down, something starts to knock walls of shuttle. Sky, one other passengers start to scream that something is coming after her. Something attacks the shuttle. Electronics malfunction. Cockpit with pilots is gone. Shuttle has stopped in middle of nowhere. Passengers has to stay inside waiting for rescuers. They can't go out side because it is deadly outside. Sky starts to act strangely. She repeats everything anyone says. This freaks out the passengers. They start to argue what they should do with Sky. Majority wants to throw her outside. Doctor want to keep her alive. Some passengers think they should throw the Doctor outside too.

Then Sky starts to repeat everything they say at same time person speaks. Then she stop repeating everyone else than Doctor. This goes on until she says things before the Doctor says them. Slowly Doctor start to repeat what Sky says and other passengers see Doctor as problem. This is one of few times, when Doctor is alone and no-one in shuttle knows who he is. He doesn't help his situation by not telling who he really is.

I don't want to spoil the episode any more. There are no weak links in this episode. Every character acts realistically and we see how different kind of people act in this kind of situation. Group doesn't always do best choices, if wrong people are too loud and people who see what actually happens are not loud enough. This shows how dysfunctional groups work. I like how passengers justify their actions at the end. I think you could do academic work based on this episode.

Monday, November 4, 2013

Green Lantern (2011)

SPOILER WARNING!!! This post spoils movie Green Lantern (2011).

I have never read any Green Lantern comics. My only exposure to Green Lantern are random event comics and few JLA comics. What I remember from them, is that Green Lantern was one of those jerks with no personality. Superman, Batman, Wonder Woman and Martian Manhunter act like adults while rest act like spoiled kids. I have always been more of a Marvel guy than DC guy. When I was younger and read comics there were only Superman and Batman available. Rest of DC is quite unknown to me. This movie has reputation of being bad superhero movie. Is it that bad?

It is not good movie, but I don't think, it is as bad as it is said to be. I don't know how faithful it is to source material. For someone, who doesn't know the source material, it is little below average superhero movie. It looks good. Story telling is off the mark. Things are not explained enough and there is too much stuff that is not needed. I didn't like that all the main characters were connected to each others. Everyone knew each others and had history. It didn't work for this movie. It felt like bad Spiderman story, where everyone Peter Parker knows is some sort of supercriminal. There was no need for Hector to have crush on Carol Ferris and be part of extended family. He was introduced as random scientist. Later we learn that he knows everyone else because he and his father are part of extended family. Movie didn't give reason why there were this extended family.

Hal Jordan is irresponsible test pilot, who is always running away from responsibility and commitment. He gets power ring from dying green lantern. Power ring allows him to make solid constructs with his willpower. Hal Jordan storyline is him thinking, is he really up to task of being Green Lantern. In that storyline we see his extended family. I think this storyline is worst part of movie. Hector storyline links to this storyline. Hector is scientist and loser son of senator. Hector gets called to look at dead alien. He gets infected by Parallax. Infection disfigures him and gives him superpowers. He uses his new powers to revenge those who see him as loser.

There are two villains in this movie. Hector has more screen time but main villains is strange energy or something like that creature called Parallax. Movie starts when Parallax get away from his prison. Parallax is part of Green Lantern Corp story line. Hal jumps between Hal Jordan and Green Lantern Corp storylines. Green Lantern Corp storyline is better of these. Green Lantern Corp storyline is given less time than Hal Jordan storyline. Hal Jordan story line is down to earth and Green Lantern story line is cosmic. Movie should have chosen one and go with that. Now main storylines are in so on different levels that it hurts both storylines.

Green Lantern Corp storyline doesn't explain almost anything for first half hour or so. Things just happen and it feels like anything can happen. We learn almost everything important by the end of the movie. It feels  like movie was made for those who know Green Lantern. I wanted to know more about Guardians. Maybe that was saved for sequel, which may never come.

Movie has some good ideas, but can't make all of them work. Extended family is good idea to give more meat for characters. Problem is that it doesn't work. it makes movie longer than it should be and take us away from Green Lantern Corp storyline. Two villains with different power levels didn't work. Parallax was just too powerful for the rest of the movie. Hal had enough trouble with Hector, who only had telepathic and telekinetic powers. For final battle he gets Parallax, who has eaten worlds and beaten group of best green lanterns.

Friends don't get fooled by Green Lantern mask. Movie almost jokes to movies, where hero's friends don't recognize the hero, when he is in his hero outfit. Hector storyline is good. Too bad that Parallax spoils it. If it was up to me Parallax and Green Lantern Corp storyline were saved for sequel. In this movie they ate credibility and time from Hal Jordan and Hector storylines. Those storylines would have been enough for this movie.

This is like Fantastic Four movies and Ang Lee's Hulk. You can watch them once, but there is no need to watch them again. You don't go telling people how great they were and you soon forget they existed. However this movie made me want to check Green Lantern comics.

Thursday, October 31, 2013

Doctor Who - The Long Game and Bad Wolf (2005)

SPOILER WARNING!!! This Post spoils Doctor Who episodes The Long Game and Bad Wolf.

What would make reality tv much better? Oh, wait. I did that on The Cabin in the Woods post. Well, this came years before that movie. You can't blame this for coping.

These are two separate stories that happen in same place and have same theme. The Long Game is mid-season episode, that came after Dalek. Bad Wolf is first part of season finale. I won't go into last episode of the season finale, because it doesn't have same theme than these episodes.

Year is 200 000. It is age of The Fourth Great Human Empire. Place is Satellite 5. Last best hope for... Sorry. I couldn't resist. Satellite 5 sends news broadcasts to earth. Doctor brings his companions to Satellite 5 to show greatest moment of human civilisation. But there is something wrong. There are no aliens on station and technology is 90 years from where it should be. When they investigate further, they learn about mysterious floor 500. Only selected few can enter to floor 500. On floor 500 they meet The Editor. Editor tells Doctor, his employers control humanity by sending false news. False news have turned humans against aliens and have stopped development to time when Satellite 5 started broadcasting news. Editor's employers see that they just let humans live on earth. Doctor and companions manage to stop Editor and his employers. Doctor expects everything to turn to normal and leaves.

If you are interested how news can affect people, you should search internet with terms "Fox effect" or "Fox news effect". There are studies how watching Fox News changes your view of the world and your opinions.

Bad Wolf happens 100 years after The Long Game. Events of The Long Game stopped news broadcasts and started age called 100 years of hell. When news broadcasts ended, humans become confused and everything went worse. Satellite 5 has been turned into Gamestation, which sends reality tv shows. Anyone can be kidnapped into reality tv show. Unlike today, in these shows losers are killed. Doctor and companions finds themselves in different reality tv shows. First they find this funny and strange. Then they learn about killing losing competitors thing. They escape from their shows. Rose is killed during the escape. Later we learn that competitors are not killed but send to different location. Different location turns out to be Dalek fleet when Daleks are building their army. Whole Satellite 5 thing was Daleks' smokescreen to build new fleet and army. Satellite 5 kept human controlled and they could do their thing peacefully and collect humans they wanted.

It is bold move from BBC show to have these episodes, which show tv something as harming that it could interrupt development. They even got actors from current tv shows to do their future counterparts. BBC is public service broadcasting company. These episode may indicate that private media companies may have more sinister agendas. Current development is that media is ending up into fewer hands. In these stories Satellite 5 was only news station. That is why they could have their control on humanity. Writers may have wanted to show that public media companies may have need even in these times.

Daleks in Bad Wolf survived The Last Great Time War and they are not only Daleks that did so.  Doctor will meet other surviving Daleks later. Doctor is not last Time Lord either. Later we learn that Master survived too and Time Lords have plan to return. But those are another stories. Next week it will be my favourite Doctor Who story. It may not be one you expect.

Monday, October 28, 2013

The Cabin in the Woods (2012)

SPOILER WARNING!!! This post spoils movie The Cabin in the Woods (2012). This is one of the best horror movies I have ever seen. This has to be seen unspoiled. I am not sure, if I should even write about this movie like this, because this spoils the movie. However here this post is. You should watch this movie before going any further.

What would make reality tv better? Yes. Contestants dying horribly. We get that in this movie, where Ancient Ones are the audience and we have to make reality tv for them. If we don't, they will destroy all of us. Ancient Ones want to have at least one sacrifice every year. Sacrifices are built like reality tv shows. Sacrifice stages are around the world and at least one must do the sacrifice each year.

This is story of american sacrifice stage. It is the cabin in woods. Cellar of the cabin has all kinds of items. There victims choose which horror monster will kill them. They don't know they are choosing anything. Production staff makes bets which monster gets chosen. Sacrifice and deaths are just part of the game for them. Production staff controls everything that happens around the cabin. When victims try to escape, they block the way out. They try to make the sacrifice go as planned. Every sacrifice stage has different sacrifice planned. This year every other sacrifice has failed. Cabin sacrifice is last hope to please Ancient Ones.

Victims are students, who are going to cabin for weekend or something. There are two athletic men, two girls for them and one stoner. They choose zombie family for their killers. Sacrifice has to follow horror movie clichés. When victims are not ready do what the are supposed to do, production staff uses gas and chemicals to change their minds. Stoner is only one, who seems realize, that there is something wrong. Others follow their roles. Zombie family starts to kill victims one by one. Every kill is part of sacrifice.

Production staff start to celebrate, when only the virgin girl is alive. She isn't actually virgin, but that doesn't seem to matter. Virgin can survive from sacrifice. Problem is that Stoner is still alive too. He saves Virgin and takes her to backstage of sacrifice stage. There they find all kinds of nightmarish monsters there. They realize what all of this was.

Production staff has improvise. They have to kill Stoner before Virgin. This helps Stoner and Virgin escape. They release all the monsters to backstage. Production staff gets their share of horror and death, when monsters start to kill them. Stoner and Virgin enter to sacrifice altar, where they are told, they had to die in correct order and Stoner has to die before sunrise or it will be end of the world. Monsters interrupt discussion. Stoner and Virgin decide not to complete sacrifice. This causes Ancient Ones to rise from below.

At first, this may look like commentary of reality tv. I see this as commentary of battle between generations. Production staff is older generation, who demands younger generation to sacrifice themselves, to let older generation enjoy their benefits of life. Modern day youth doesn't have similar future ahead of them that their parents had, when they were the young generation. They could have jobs for life. Today no-one can expect to have one job to last for life. Younger generation is living in totally different world than older generation. Older generation controls everything and tries to make everything to work for their benefit. Some members of younger generation has seen this and they have dropped out of the system. Stoner represents them. Production staff's methods didn't work on him and he finally took the system down. Younger generation may not like their role and may take the system down like Stoner and Virgin did in this movie. That would hurt older generation.

Thursday, October 24, 2013

Doctor Who - Dalek (2005)

SPOILER WARNING!!! This Post spoils Doctor Who episode Dalek.

Fourth Doctor was most popular Doctor. Following Doctors weren't as popular and executives didn't trust the show. Series had delays and problems. It all ended 1989 with seventh Doctor. Next try was year 1996 with eighth Doctor, who only got one tv movie. Doctor continued his adventures in other media. Doctors from first to eighth are called classic Doctors. I don't know what Doctors from ninth onwards are called. We got our ninth Doctor year 2005. I am not sure was this new launch meant to be reboot or relaunch. You can't be sure watching the series and I didn't follow creative teams comment during that time. It was later established that new Doctor Who is same continuity as classic Doctor Who. If I don't remember totally wrong that happened first time in special episode after fourth season.

In story continuity lot had happened after eighth Doctor. There was The Last Great Time War between Daleks and Time Lords. The Doctor was only survivor of the both races. Or that is what we are told. Series drops more and more information about The Last Great Time War as it goes on. This is one of those episode that tells about it. Probably the 50th anniversary episode is another one.

This is episode that showed, what ninth Doctor's run could have been. Ninth's problem was that creative team didn't use Christopher Eccleston correctly. They tried to make him what they perfected with tenth Doctor, when they should have made ninth tougher man, who is trying to figure out that he had killed his race and Daleks to end The Last Great Time War. Man, who first takes a new companion to see destruction of companion's planet is not nice guy. When series progressed, creative started to change the tone of character into nice guy. Nice guy worked with next actor, but Christopher Eccleston wasn't like that.

Doctor enters to bunker, which contains the collection of alien artifact collector. Collection's crown jewel is living Dalek, who survived from The Last Great Time War. Doctor and Dalek meet as enemies but change during episode. Dalek makes Doctor to realize that they are both alone, because Doctor killed both races to end the war. Doctor reacts to this with anger and tries to kill Dalek. He blames Dalek for death of his people. Dalek is contaminated and starts to question what he is doing. Doctor comes more willing to kill than changed Dalek does.  Doctor's companion, Rose Tyler, stops Doctor killing Dalek. Dalek, who is used to following orders, finds his new freedom and questions too hard to bear. He ask Rose to order him to kill himself. Rose does that and Doctor wins The Last Great Time War, because is last one alive. I liked how two mortal enemies realized that they are last of their kind and how they reacted to that realization.

The scene I put as trailer showed how good Eccleston was at his best. It also shows the tone ninth Doctor should have had. Someone with power saw Doctor Who as kid's show and that tone is too dark for kid's show. Ninth's run was only one season long. Change between ninth and tenth wasn't as big as changes before. Tenth is almost what ninth was in last episodes. Now they had right actor for the role and Doctor Who started to have success of fourth Doctor's Doctor Who. Eccleston is good actor, but he wasn't used correctly. When he was, we got episodes like this one.

I am not sure, if I go to tenth Doctor next week. Ninth Doctor has episode that has same theme as next monday's movie. I might do that episode before going to tenth Doctor.

Monday, October 21, 2013

Drag Me to Hell (2009)

SPOILER WARNING!!! This Post spoils movie Drag Me to Hell (2009).

If you have any plans to see this movie, please watch it before reading this. I have to spoil most interesting parts of this movie to make my point. When I watched this first time, I didn't have any intentions to write about this movie. Then I started to consider, if I should write about this. Now that I have horror theme month, I can do this and other horror movie, I have considered doing. Both are much better unspoiled and I will spoil both of them.

Our hero is Christine Brown, loan officer, who is looking for promotion. Her co-worker is also looking for that same promotion. Co-worker seems to spend more time to look good for their boss than actually doing his job. Older gipsy woman is late on her payments. Christine asks her boss, what she should do. Boss tells her, she has to do tough decisions, if she wants to have promotion. Gipsy woman loses her mind, when Christine tells her, she loses her house. She tells Christine that she will beg her later.

Christine has made preparations for big deal. If they can close that deal, Christine will have promotion. After Christine leave work, gipsy woman attacks her and puts curse on her. Demons will play with her, until after three days, they will come for her. Things start to go wrong. They lose the big deal, Christine starts to see things and things don't work out with boyfriend's parents.

Christine does everything to be saved. She tries to contact gipsy woman, only to find out she is dead. She goes to medio, but medio dies during session. Curse is for owner button. Her last change is to give button to someone else and demons will take that someone else to hell instead of her. The button is put into envelope and Christine goes looking for victim. She can't give envelope to anyone and time starts to run out. She can't even give it to her co-worked, who caused them to lose the big deal.

She realizes, she can give curse back to dead gipsy woman. She digs the gipsy woman out of her grave and ceremoniously gives the envelope to her. Next morning everything is better again. Her boss has found that co-worker caused them to lose the big deal. Weather is better. Christine and boyfriend are going to vacation. Boyfriend has envelope which has the button. We learn, Christine gave wrong envelope to gipsy woman. Demons come out of the ground and drag Christine to hell.

Now to the reason why I wanted to write about this movie. What is the message of this movie? Our heroine is woman, who wants to survive in tough banking world and be promoted to position she deserves. She always wants to do the right thing. She wants to help the gipsy woman, but her boss made her do the decision she doesn't want to do. She is damned to hell for doing her job. Then she fights backs and saves herself.

This is what we are told until Christine and boyfriend meet again in the end. There Christine is new woman, who doesn't let things just happen to her, tells boyfriend, she could have given the gipsy woman extension. Right after that demons drag her to hell. Does that mean, she should have given her hopes for promotion to help others? Was her role to be just stepping stone for less qualified others and she shouldn't have wanted better for herself?

I like movies that doesn't have happy ending. There are too many movies with happy ending. But in this case I would have liked happy ending much more. Movie told interesting growing story and in the end it didn't mean anything. Christine's life wasn't perfect at the beginning. She worked to improve her situation and as a reward she was taken to hell. What a nice uplifting story we got here.

Thursday, October 17, 2013

Doctor Who - Terror of the Autons (1971)

SPOILER WARNING!!! This Post spoils Doctor Who episode Terror of the Autons (1971).

Third Doctor brought two major changes to series. It was shot on color. Previous two Doctor were shot black and white. Another change was that everything happened on current day Earth. Doctor was punished his actions in last story of second Doctor by disabling Tardis and exiling him to earth. Doctor started to working for UNIT, that was introduced in The Invasion story.

Writers of Doctor Who felt that Doctor needed his Professor Moriarty. They created The Master, evil time lord with hypnotic powers. This is episode that introduced Master to series. Horse-box appears inside circus. Man dressed in suit comes out of it. With goatee and sinister look, you know he is evil. He introduces himself as Master and hypnotizes owner of the circus. This is all introduction you need for character like Master.

In this story Master uses Autons, animated plastic dolls to kill human race. I wasn't sure what his actual plan was. He created almost unstoppable Autons and when The Nestene, power that animates Autons, arrives to earth, Doctor talks him out of his plan. Did he think he could control The Nestene and Autons? If he wanted to rule earth, why kill all humans? Master is like someone, who wants to do evil things, but in the end he finds out that he doesn't like the things he has done. Or then he is so excited being evil, he forgets something that let good guys win. Usually his goals are something that doesn't make much sense in long run. Doctor and Master are both outcast time lords. This gives them special bond. There are even times when they work together and when Master helps Doctor. hHen Master has change to kill Doctor, he hesitates, because he really doesn't want to kill Doctor.

Master can regenerate like Doctor and we have seen few incarnations of him. His personality hasn't changed as much as Doctor's has. Master had used all his degenerations during classic series, but managed to get more by taking control of a another body. Doctor is almost out of his degenerations. We might see something similar happening to him or they have to invent something else for him, if they want the series to continue.

I know I haven't talked much about Terror of the Autons. Story is not that interesting. Most of the story is used for establishing Master's character. Roger Delgado has such presence, that he makes all scenes he is in interesting even when story is not that interesting. I honestly don't understand why he wanted to kill humans with Autons and plastic based weapons. This is almost like The Invasion redone badly. So many things happen same way. In Invasion things made more sense than in this. Invasion was whole story. This is first act that introduces main villain.

This is all from classic Doctors this time. I might return to other stories from first three Doctors later. I already wrote about only story I have from fourth Doctor and others I don't have anything. I saw those stories from tv and didn't want to buy them on dvd. Next time it is time to see what happened to Doctor between classic Doctor Who and relaunched Doctor Who.

Monday, October 14, 2013

Resident Evil: Retribution (2012)

SPOILER WARNING!!! This Post spoils movie Resident Evil: Retribution (2012).

I really liked first Resident Evil movie. It had interesting story. Interesting characters. Phasing worked. Every movie after that has been worse than previous. This is fifth Resident Evil movie. I have hard time understanding why these are so popular. I am one to blame, because I have these on blu ray. But I am movie collector who liked the first movie. Lousy hobby. You have to buy things you don't like to have complete collection. Problem of this series is that every movie tries to be more extreme that previous. Story has gone quite stupid by now. I haven't played the games, so I don't know how much of this stupidity is from games and how much of it is original to this movie series. I might do theme month or something when sixth and final movie is released. I already have done Dark Knight twice. I think I can do this twice too. Even when this is not as good as The Dark Knight.

Remember the cliffhanger at end of Afterlife. No? Well, that doesn't matter, because Alice is captured and everyone else is killed in few minutes. After that there is nothing from Afterlife. Alice wakes up as different person in normal life, but that doesn't last long because of zombie apocalypse. Alice and her husband are killed. Her daughter survives. Then we cut to real Alice, who is in high-tech cell. From this point on this feels more like watching someone playing video game than watching real movie. This movie series is based on video games, but I rather watch movie that someone else playing video game.

Someone boots the computers and Alice is released from cell. Like in video game, she doesn't know what is going on. On first level she witnesses zombie outbreak in Tokio. She barely escapes that and enter controlling room. There she meet Ada Wong with Wesker on monitors. Wesker has now changed sides and is on side of good guys. I have to watch Afterlife, if I wanted to rant how little this make sense in context of the movie series. So I leave that to when I do the series. I really don't want to watch Afterlife, if I don't have to.

Ada and Wesker tell Alice that they are on Umbrella testing facility. There are various testing rooms modelled after big cities and one for suburban. They tell that this all is controlled by Red Queen, who doesn't want to let Alice out alive. Ada and Alice have to go through testing rooms to meet rescue team. Needles to say that every room is like level on video game with different kind of enemies. All enemies are something that they shouldn't have any change against. Fight scenes are more posing and slow motion than anything realistic. We see many characters from past movies or their clones. I leave ranting, how little it makes sense of having clones of some characters from previous movies, to time when I revisit this movie. To be honest I am not sure that every old character made it out of previous movies. But to check that out I have to watch those movies again and I don't want to do it this time.

On one level we meet fake Alice's daughter, who thinks Alice is her mother. She is deaf. Without any explanation Alice can speak sign language. I don't remember she had done that before. But now she can do that like it is not a big deal. That was just stupid, because daughter didn't have to be deaf. If she was deaf for some reason, little explanation, why Alice knew sign language, would have been nice. Or was this hint that Alice was clone herself. Nothing else indicated that. And that would have made this movie much more interesting.

What should I tell you about final fight? It is kind of annoying, when movie shows with CGI, how our heroes break their bones and next second they fight like nothing happened. Because of that, I am not sure, if one of our heroes died during the fight or not. He is not in following scenes, but no-one acted like he died. I guess they were too busy posing unrealistically. After our heroes win final fight there is time to build up next movie. Heroes are flown to White House or what is left of it. There Alice meet Wesker, who injects T-Virus to Alice. Then he takes Alice and other to roof where he tells that this is last stand for humans. Then we see how White house is surrounded by zombies and dragons and other monsters. Our heroes pose like they didn't see this when they came to White House.

Every movie in this series has been worse than previous and I expect next to follow this trend. Where they can go from this? We have seen Red Queen capable of mass-produce clones and turn them into zombies and other monsters. Last humans are inside remains of White House. Does it sound like humans have change? Next movie is scheduled for 2014. Only one year and we know how stupid this will get.

Thursday, October 10, 2013

Doctor Who - The Invasion (1969)

SPOILER WARNING!!! This Post spoils Doctor Who episode The Invasion (1969).

I chose this story to introduce Cybermen for several reasons. In this story we meet UNIT first time. This is one of those stories that have missing episodes and this is story from second Doctor. I considered doing alternative universe Cybermen origin story, but I already have two stories from tenth Doctor waiting. So it will be this one.

I always felt Cybermen were analogy of communism and Soviet Union. When I tried to confirm this, I could not find anything. I found Cybermen are based on question, how much cybernetic implants you can have, before you turn out to be something else than human. Cybermen are race of cyborgs. They were humanoids earlier. They started to use more and more cybernetic implants, until they were more machines than humanoids. They don't have emotions. Emotions are their weakness. They lose their minds and malfunction when they are exposed to emotions. All regular Cybermen look like each other. There are few special units, which look different and have different functions. Cybermen convert compatible humans into Cybermen.

This is first story including United Nations Intelligence Taskforce UNIT. They are led by The Brigadier. Brigadier and UNIT were reoccurring characters during classic Doctors' era. They were the officials Doctor dealt with while he was on current day earth.

Doctor and companions come to earth to fix circuits. They find International Electromatics has become most important electronic circuit manufacturer. Leader of IE, Vaughn has made deal with Cybermen. He help Cybermen to invade the Earth and after that Vaughn will lead Earth, Vaughn have other plans. Because he doesn't trust Cybermen, he tries to build weapon against Cybermen. He wants to destroy Cybermen after they have invaded earth and rule all by himself.

IE has added their electronic devices circuit that amplifies Cyber control signal. The signal makes people pass out. When the signal is transmitted, Cybermen rise from sewers. Doctor has managed to make protection devices for UNIT members and they can fight back. They can event stop first attack. Cybermen think Vaughn have betrayed them. They decide to kill all life on earth with Cyber megatron bomb. Yes. It is called that.

Doctor persuades Vaughn to help him to destroy Cyber transmitter. These names sound like 60's Batman. Doctor manages to destroy transmitter with help of UNIT, but Vaughn dies in process. Without Cyber transmitter, Cybermen has to come so close to earth, that UNIT can destroy them.

I mentioned missing episodes. BBC has lost several Doctor Who episodes due poor archiving policies. Wikipedia says that currently there are 106 episodes missing. From time to time some episodes are told to be found, but those are often just rumors. BBC has soundtracks for all episodes and some stills. The Invasion is eight episode long story with episodes one and four missing. For dvd release those episodes are animated using original soundtrack. This has been done for some other stories that miss some episodes. There are also other restoration methods used to bring those episodes back. Some use original soundtrack and still shots. Most missing episodes are from first two Doctors' era. Third Doctor also have couple missing episodes.

Next thursday it is time to obey your Master, when we meet third of top 3 Doctor Who villains.

Monday, October 7, 2013

Event Horizon (1997)

SPOILER WARNING!!! This Post spoils movies The Black Hole (1979) and Event Horizon (1997).

Event Horizon is only movie I hate. There are much worse movies, but I don't care about them to hate them. Event Horizon has much that I like. First hour is mostly very good. It is like serious science fiction. All strange things could have serious science fiction explanation. But the explanation is anything but serious science fiction. In many ways this is like The Black Hole. This is the movie that took the worst thing of The Black Hole and made it main plot point.

Event Horizon is experimental space ship build for faster than light travel. It uses some kind of worm hole technology with artificial black holes. It goes through another dimension from one point in our universe to another point in our universe. Event Horizon disappeared on maiden voyage and reappeared seven years later. Movie starts when search and rescue ship Lewis and Clark go to search for Event Horizon. Like in serious science fiction travelling in our solar system takes long time. Like in serious science fiction there are no guns aboard and everything is like in real world, where they don't fight aliens. Crew has only rescue workers, not solders. Sets and models look good and realistic. Story telling is competent and everything makes sense. During first hour there are few hints that this could end up being terrible. But most problems they have are realistic, like breaking hulls and broken filters. Those hints could be explained realistically.

But they are not explained realistically. In ending of The Black Hole everyone goes through black hole. This sequence is strange dream like. Heroes managed to get though black hole safely. But villain is trapped inside robot and lands to hell. This sequence is short and strange. It doesn't change the movie too much. In this movie the hell is rubbed in our faces. The another dimension is literally the hell with torture, demons and fire. Hell is not science fiction concept and not realistic in anyway. Hell and demons work in fantasy, not in science fiction, where things should be realistic. For first hour this movie does everything to be serious science fiction movie. Even after another dimension is revealed to be hell, crew of Lewis and Clark acts like in serious science fiction movie.

It is not enough that another dimension was hell, that turned crew of Event Horizon instantly self-mutilating cannibals. Passenger of Lewis and Clark, doctor Weir is turned into demon. Weir is the one who designed Event Horizon. He is there to figure out what went wrong. He had visions of his dead wife and then he plugs his eyes out and become some sort of demon. He can see without his eyes and is stronger than normal human. There is no build up for becoming demon. He just suddenly loses his mind while having visions and then he is demon, that doesn't need eyes to see. Other members of crew have visions too, but they can still act normally. After Weir took his eyes out, he is sucked into space. We assume that he died. But he returns with more demonic powers and now he has his eyes back. He can shapeshift and do all kind of supernatural things. This was a movie that started like serious science fiction movie. Everyone except Weir still want to be in serious science fiction movie, but Weir and ship, with blood running in its pipes, make that impossible.

I hate this movie, because it is serious science fiction movie, that is turned into supernatural horror, that makes no sense. Star Trek episode The Naked Time showed, how you can do story where crew loses their minds in science fiction. Star Trek The Next Generation made it again in episode The Naked Now. You don't have to add hell and supernatural powers to make this kind of story interesting. I hade liked this better, if explanation was chemicals or microscopic life forms, that made crew crazy. But it was hell and demonic power.

I don't know, if ending was genius or stupid. More you get screen time in this movie, more likely you are to die before the end. Movie does this so far, that I had forgotten people, that survive at one point. They are so much off the screen, that you forget them. It is horror and action movie cliché, that once you tell something about yourself, you are going to die. This movie takes it further by killing all main characters. Only minor characters, that are mostly off-screen, survive. I like the idea, but execution didn't work that well. Survivors had too little screen time, that you care about them. For the guy who went insane first, it made sense he wasn't on screen after that, because he was in such bad shape. Other too survivors were sent to do something off-screen. Movie told what they were doing, but it was shown while something more interesting was going on.

I could rant about couple other things in this movie, but this is already quite long. This movie really makes me angry. It could have been great serious science fiction movie. Parts of it still are. But why add hell with torture and demons when it doesn't make any sense in science fiction story? Almost everything in this movie could have been explained with science fiction concepts. Weir's demonic powers were just stupid. Dropping them and hell, this could have been better movie.