Saturday, June 10, 2017
This one hurts.
Adam West has passed at the age of 88.
Literally my earliest memories include watching Batman starring Adam West as Batman and Burt Ward as Robin. Steans-family lore states that my first words were "Batman" as I ran around our home with my security blanket around my neck.
The story is that I was toddler-ish and Jason was two years older, and my mom, The Karebear, had to make us dinner before my Dad got home from work (dude worked hard and late). In order to wrangle me, her ADD wunderkind, she figured out that I'd sit perfectly still for Batman, which happened to be on in syndication right when she needed to fire up the stove.
When the Michael Keaton-starring "serious" Batman was released, in 1989, when I was 14, the show came back on cable, and I totally got what they were up to. Somehow, inbetween, like many of my generation, there'd been some confusion about the show being a drama that was kind of stupid and something you grew out of. But, nope, the show had been winking to the older crowd all along.
Thursday, June 8, 2017
It's no secret I'm not a fan of the three prior entries in the shared DC filmic universe (which the kids are calling the DCEU, of DC Extended Universe, which makes no sense, but this train left the station without me).
If you want to extrapolate how much I was dreading the possibility of another weak entry from DC in the current superhero movie bonanza, you can check out my recent post on my love for Wonder Woman as a character and then, based on how I felt about Batman v Superman and Suicide Squad, try to figure out how another movie as weak as the prior DC films was going to settle with me.
Of course, as the cinematic debut of The Amazing Amazon (despite 75 years in print and a well-known commodity), Wonder Woman (2017) carried an unreasonable set of both expectations and penalties for movies far beyond this single picture. If it failed, who knew what this meant for Wonder Woman as a franchise, yes,* but, if it failed: what would happen to female-starring superhero movies in general?
With much of the same crew responsible for prior efforts involved in this venture, there was no reason to believe much had changed from the disappointing first three DC filmic installments. And, no, I couldn't trust the trailers. Man of Steel had a phenomenal trailer, and I actually went to see Suicide Squad in part because it had a different director than Snyder and had a fun trailer.
Whatever changed at DCEU's offices (Geoff Johns' rise to power, I'm guessing), I am ecstatic to say: Wonder Woman has made it to the big screen, and I was absolutely thrilled with the movie.
Saturday, June 3, 2017
Like most kids of my generation, I grew up with Wonder Woman as the default "superhero for girls". Sure, DC had a wide array of female characters, but a lot of "team" concepts aimed at boys included 1 or maybe 2 girls on the team no matter how big the roster got (see: GI Joe). And on Super Friends, Wonder Woman was the all-purpose female character who was not Jayna of The Wonder Twins of Wendy of Super Marv and Wendy (ahhh, the 70's).
|but at least they gave WW two villains from her rogues gallery|
Wednesday, May 10, 2017
We had a request from our Kansas City branch to get back into the Live-Tweet Business.
It's been a long time, and Stuart pitched one of one of the best movies ever produced by humankind.
The Movie: Escape From New York
Available streaming at: Netflix or for $2.99 at Amazon
Time: 9:00 PM Central
My handle: @melbotis
Our hashtag: #snakescape
If you've not seen this movie - it's directed by John Carpenter (Halloween, The Thing, They Live), in his 80's heyday, telling a tale of the dark future of 1997 (the movie was released in '81).
It stars Kurt Russell! Lee Van Cleef! Ernest "I'll be in anything" Borgnine! Donald Pleasence as the POTUS! Isaac Hayes as Post-Apocalyptic Isaac Hayes! Harry Dean Stanton! and Adrienne Barbeau (and all that that entails)! Tom Atkins (you'll totally recognize him from the 1980's)! And Frank Doubleday in my favorite performance of it's type, anywhere!!!!!
It's 1997, and the world is not going so well. The President's plane is infiltrated by terrorists, and POTUS must make good his escape en route to a peace conference and prevent the escalation of an international conflict. Unfortunately, POTUS' escape capsule lands him in the middle of New York City, which - in the context of the last 1970's was kind of a hellhole, and so by '81 it made some sorta-logical sense it would be walled off and turned into a maximum security penal colony.
Luckily for the US Government, they recently captured super-criminal Snake Plissken (who is NOT dead, thank you), so they send him in to retrieve our two-legged MacGuffin.
It. Is. Amazing.
Friday night! 9:00 Central! Be there!
Wednesday, April 12, 2017
by David Lynch, Angelo Badalamenti and Little Jimmy Scott
I got idea man
You take me for a walk
Under the sycamore trees
The dark trees that blow baby
In the dark trees that blow
And I'll see you
And you'll see me
And I'll see you in the branches that blow
In the breeze,
I'll see you in the trees
Under the sycamore trees
Monday, April 10, 2017
Look, I go and see every single Marvel Studios movie in the theater. I just dig what they're up to, in general. Point being - there was never any question whether or not they were getting my $12 for a ticket.
Things I knew before the trailer came out:
- Thor would get a haircut
- Jeff Goldblum would play a major part
- the movie would have the Hulk in it somewhere
That's about it. Nobody told me it ALSO had Cate Blanchett.
I don't know how many of you saw Ghostbusters (2016), but one thing that was absolutely true was that Chris Hemsworth absolutely held his own with four of the funniest people working in TV and film, and, in fact, got the biggest laugh of the film from me. So letting him do more of that here - that's welcome.
Thor was never my favorite comics character - and I've tried. But I have enjoyed the Marvel Studios version a great deal and pretty much everything about the movies, even though they're generally considered less than the best in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Sure, the second one is most forgettable, but it does have some good stuff in it, but I couldn't tell you the plot now if I tried.
Anyway, this looks fun, right? High stakes. Big, big story. Guest stars. Cate Blanchett.
This could be more than okay.
Saturday, April 8, 2017
Thursday night we had nothing queued on the DVR, the Cubs weren't playing and I was pondering what we might put on the tube when Jamie said "Why don't we watch Commando?"
I immediately ran over and began trying to remove the Jamie-disguise from whomever was pretending to be my wife, but eventually it was revealed that, no, it was her, and she didn't care what we watched. She had seen my recently purchased Commando BluRay collecting dust on the shelf for months, earnestly waiting a viewing, and - as she loves me, some times she takes pity on me.
Now, if you know me, you know of my ironic/ totally not-at-all ironic love for Commando (1985), an early-ish Arnie picture that was part of what catapulted him to superstar status that would reach peak popularity around 1992.
In the harsh light of reviewing this movie in 2017, the movie probably seems positively camp. While it certainly has some gags and Arnie-isms, it was never intended as a yuck fest - but Arnie was part of a wave of a certain kind of action movie that wasn't afraid of a sense of humor. And I can easily watch it as a straight action movie of workmanlike success, just as I can enjoy the movie for the truly bizarre specimen and reflection of a certain mentality in mid-80's actioners that it is. OR I can enjoy it as the Platonic Ideal of 80's Action Movies/ Movies in General.
Thursday, April 6, 2017
What can you say? Don Rickles was one of the five funniest people I can think of, and he was a pro and working right up til recent years, still himself and sharp as hell the last time I saw him on video.
Some people's comedy doesn't age well - I'm not sure how a lot of comedians from the first thirty years of TV would play today. But Rickles was always in a class of his own, decade after decade, and no one could do what he did and still be beloved by multiple generations. I think we all knew - that wicked tongue? It was the act. You never saw people who actually knew Rickles say a word against him, and if you doubt that, please do watch the doc, Mr. Warmth.
I mean, I can think of few things that would have filled me with more joy in this life than had the man ever called me a hockey puck.
Here's the NY Times obit.
He's truly going to be missed, and I hope all the media coverage he gets tells the younger kids he was more than a Mr. Potato - although that was sort of perfect, too.
Happy 80th Birthday to the guy who gave me very specific ideas of what a cool guy was supposed to be like when I was about 5.
Mom never did let me wear that cape.
Just noticed - Finn has Lando's blaster in The Force Awakens.