Saturday, January 5, 2019
Format: MST3K on Netflix
It's not often you see a movie and you think "this isn't a patch on Robot Jox". Made for... someone? by The Asylum - which raises the question about the market and outlets for movies like this in 2019.
Yes, this was a quick cash grab by The Asylum to make some coin off the dummies who think Pacific Rim and Atlantic Rim (2013) must be related, and probably honestly can't tell the different between the two, anyway. I do wonder what has to happen to you along the way to decide this is going to be what you do for money, but I also don't blame them.
In closing: I am pretty sure they made the movie up as they went along and the cast was drunk through 40-60% of the movie, and I'm not kidding. Our lead seems pickled a huge amount of this movie.
Friday, December 28, 2018
Thursday, December 27, 2018
I am not a gamer. The only console I own is one of those 2600 emulator boxes and it hasn't been out of the closet in a year. I get that people spend a lot of time on video games, and that I have no stones to throw about people wasting their time and money on non-real-things. I write on a blog that needlessly analyzes movies and occasionally comics and talks a lot about comic-based movies. Take all of the below with the necessary grain of salt.
Friday, October 26, 2018
Viewing: Unknown. Eighth?
After 20 years of avoiding watching The Thing (1982) Jamie decides it's time to watch the movie and then get in front of a microphone. We discuss a modern horror classic, and what it's like to finally see a movie you've heard so much about (and maybe built up a bit in your imagination).
Bride of Frankenstein Theme - Franz Waxman
The Thing Main Titles - Ennio Morricone
Calling Occupants of Interplanetary Craft - The Carpenters
Swan Lake - Act 2: No. 10 Scene - Tchaikovsky
Featured: Signal Watch Halloween 2018
- Amy and Ryan Watch 50 Shades!
- Bond Watch! James Bond movie discussion
- Avengers Chronological Countdown w/ Jamie and Ryan
- Disney History w/ NathanC and Ryan
- High School Movies w/ Maxwell
Get your audio episodes at:
Monday, September 3, 2018
Friday, August 24, 2018
Format: Amazon Streaming
You guys, I @#$%ing loved this movie. Get a look inside my wheelhouse and what works for me in a movie with Southland Tales (2006). And, man, we really missed so much of what there was to say - enough so that I'm ready to make covering this movie an annual event.
AmyC returns with this overlooked, underseen sci-fi satire of a post 9/11 America. We struggle to convey the plot and all of the amazing things packed into this film - from one of the most astounding casts ever assembled, to musical choices, to transdimensional travel, to porn stars with rock solid business plans. Truly an unusual film that was never given a real shot at finding an audience - Ryan watches the film for the first time and is absolutely ready to push it to his list of recommendations.
Follow The Signal Watch PodCast on a service of your choice:
Wednesday, August 22, 2018
Tuesday, June 26, 2018
Saturday, May 26, 2018
Thursday, April 12, 2018
PODCAST: NathanC and Ryan talk Disney's curious 1980s - "The Black Hole", "Something Wicked This Way Comes" and "Never Cry Wolf"
Nathan Cone joins us to discuss what the heck was going on at Disney in the 1970's and 80's that led to The Black Hole, Something Wicked This Way Comes and Never Cry Wolf. It's a fun ride full of Disney history and rife with 80's-ness!
On Google Play:
Tuesday, April 3, 2018
Saturday, March 24, 2018
Sunday, March 18, 2018
Viewing: Fifth or Sixth
Format: Alamo Drafthouse/ Village
The Adventures of Buckaroo Banzai Across the 8th Dimension
Viewing: Seventh or Eighth
Format: Shout Factory BluRay
Join SimonUK and I as we ponder some cult favorites of the 1980's! And, boy howdy, do we go all over the map on this one. But, mostly, we stay on task.
Thursday, February 8, 2018
So, Shoemaker sent me a text alerting me that today is the 50th Anniversary of the Premier of Planet of the Apes! I've found three completely different release dates, and February 8th is absolutely one of them. I wasn't born yet, so I don't know, but I expect this is the Premier date the rest were release windows across the US. Movie distribution used to be a bit different.
Sunday, January 7, 2018
Friday, December 22, 2017
If I tend to do extra-sized posts for big, monumental movies that fit into the Venn Diagram of the kinds of movies which I'll cover these days - one of the things I liked quite a bit about Star Wars: The Last Jedi is that there's so much to talk about. And, as happened with Blade Runner 2049 and a few other movies of late, I entered with zero expectations and found myself so fully immersed for the film's runtime, I know I didn't catch it all. I am glad to say that this movie bears a second viewing, something I was ready to do at the very moment I finished my Tuesday night screening.
Like a lot of folks, I was pleased when the reviews came out and pulled a mid 90th percentile on RottenTomatoes. And, when the movie then pulled a 50-something percent in audience reviews on RT, I said to Max, "well, this probably means I'm going to love it."* After all, you can kind of count on people with overly strong reactions to be the most vocal and actually take to the internets to voice their opinions (this is why Yelp! reviews are nearly useless).
And the movie is both a very, very conservative Star Wars movie and something that knows the series cannot just be retreads of the original trilogy in perpetuity.
Saturday, October 14, 2017
It's kind of funny that in this post and the last, I'm referring to movies referenced in my own title banner, but there you have it.
I checked, and it has been a while since I last watched George Pal's 1953 movie of War of the Worlds. A number of years now, in fact.
My interest was piqued by the idea of a Martian invasion in 6th or 7th grade when I learned about Orson Welles' and the Mercury Theater's 1938 War of the Worlds radio broadcast - which supposedly caused a panic (sort of, but not really). Click on the link and listen. It's a hell of a show.
Shortly after all this, around the age of 12, The Admiral found out I wanted to watch the original movie, and so he and I rented it and I think it was just the two of us who watched it.
Honestly, despite the fact it was not a gore fest or built on the tension-making trip wires of, say Ridley Scott's Alien, that movie scared the hell out of me.
Wednesday, October 11, 2017
Prior Blade Runner posts:
January 9, 2016 - film watch
September 16, 2016 - novel
January 6, 2008 - DITMTLOD
SOME SPOILERS BELOW:
Like a lot of people of my generation, Blade Runner is one of my favorite films. To expect objectivity regarding the film at this point is a difficult request as I cannot separate the film's actual merits from the impact it had upon me when I first watched the film circa 1988 and deepening appreciation over time.
In a recent comment, Fantomenos asked what the last band was that I related to on a deeply personal level, where I felt they were speaking straight to me (I dodged the question), and I think movies operate much the same way. I will simply never feel quite the same way about a movie now as I did in high school. Whatever openness I had to experience during that period of development is a maze of decades of other movies, cynicism and life experience.
At this point, I've watched Blade Runner dozens of times. I know the beats, the characters, the dialog. And so do you, most likely. I can talk about things explicit and implicit to the film's story, talk about the production of the movie and tell you about seeing a Spinner and Rachael's dress in Seattle. I'm aware it's likely part of how I became interested in cinema noir, film design, and remains the high water mark for movies about AI, in my opinion.
If Star Wars had created a totally immersive universe through design, sound, music, character and themes - a fairy tale universe in which I would have been happy to jump into, Blade Runner provided a similar experience with a dystopia in which everything seemed to fall out of the current culture, in which I could draw a line from our current lives to how we might reach this world of constant rain, stratified social classes, surreal landscapes of mega-structures and ubiquitous advertising (some of it beautiful). And, no, despite the Rachaels, I would not want to live in the world of Blade Runner. The world of this movie is the world of the end of humanity.
Wednesday, August 9, 2017
I had two failed attempts to see Shin Godzilla (2016) when it was released in October 2016 and then had a quick return to the screen around New Years 2017. The first time something at work came up and I had to cancel. The second time I went to see the movie with PaulT and Jamie and something was wrong with the film. It started and a 1K tone was laid over the soundtrack to the movie. Which was both awful and hilarious. Anyway, they stopped the movie about three minutes in, we had this weirdly informal conversation with the manager about what we should do, and I got a couple passes to come back, but couldn't attend the next screening as it was my first day back to work after the holiday break.
And the more stuff I saw about the movie, the more goggle-eyed I became. I really wanted to see this flick.
In case you don't know what Shin Godzilla is, essentially Toho Studios rebooted the Godzilla franchise from square one (it was also marketed in the US as Godzilla: Resurgence). And if you've never seen Gojira, the 1954 Godzilla that is the Japanese version and lacks Raymond Burr (a) shaaaaaaame on you, and (b) fix that immediately. It's a terrific film. And aside from Godzilla 1985, Gojira is one of the only movies that's just about Godzilla (aka: Gojira) attacking Tokyo by himself and for mysterious reasons and is not fighting, say, Anguirus*. Here, in a re-booted universe that's never heard of Godzilla, our scaly pal returns again for the first time to wreak just horrible, unthinkable havoc upon an unsuspecting Tokyo.
And it is really, really good.
Wednesday, July 19, 2017
I was skeptical when Matt Reeves and Co. relaunched the Planet of the Apes franchise a few years back. We're big fans of the original five films here at The Signal Watch - but despite a certain affection for Tim Burton and an appreciation for anything with a simian in a featured role, I've only seen that remake once. Because I kind of hated it and wound up having to apologize to several friends who agreed to go see the movie with me.
So, yet another go at the idea wasn't something I was looking forward to initially.
But, lo and behold, Rise and Dawn of the Planet of the Apes were released, and, yea, I dug them. They managed to find an astonishing line where they could break from the original narrative but still give nods enough, show respect for those movies and still be entirely their own thing. If Caesar wasn't the child of apes who'd traveled through time and space, we still found a way to make him the founder of the Ape Society that didn't need to bend time and space to get the job done. And if I always stood by the complex heart of the original slate of films, the new movies refused to be any less challenging.
I'm pleased to report that War for the Planet of the Apes is a worthy conclusion to the trilogy, an astonishing technical achievement, and - as all the apes movies have been (save the Burton one-off) a thoughtful character study and examination of morals. And, of course, a dystopian sci-fi franchise that actually earns its dim view of humanity. It isn't just ignorance or folly that leads to man's downfall, it's mankind's inability to tame our demons that drives us straight over the cliff.