Friday, 30 September 2011


It's a horror movie about a creature in the back woods of inbred country... but you know exactly what sort of movie it is when the movie shows you full frontal female nudity within a minute!

Oh, and the "creature" isn't actually shown in the same frame as the characters. Makes for easier editing. (And it's better than having to shoot an obvious puppet being manipulated by the person 'attacking' it.)

As is standard for these movies, the main group are a bunch of young men and women on their way to somewhere else, and they decide to stop here for the night. (And there's the scenes of character 'development' and more nudity and sex.) And then the creature takes them out, of course not quickly enough (although, to be fair, the creature does very little of the actual killing). And the inbred community has more relevance than usual, and actually makes the movie some what interesting with how that is played out. But as this is a monster movie, that plotline isn't kept around long enough.

Have to say that the creature outfit itself isn't terrible. It's mostly shot in darkness, which only helps it, but it looks like it had some budget behind it.

This is one of those movies that tries the "but who's the real creature?" lines, but didn't decide to sustain it, and just comes off as another entry in the "forgeddaboutit" horror genre...


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Thursday, 29 September 2011

Episodically 50

Reminding me of another movie I can't remember the name of nor find a review of it if I did one, this movie is part of a series. By which I mean, this is presented as part of a "reality" paranormal series, and something actually real happens to make everything go wrong.

In this case, "Paranormal Investigators" is coming up to episode 50, and gets a chance to do some debunking at a mental hospital I think. Or maybe a criminal asylum. Some wacked out place anyway. They are joined (reluctantly) by a group of religious believers who are here to prove that there is life after death, just as the P.I.s are trying to prove otherwise.

But, of course, there really are spooks. And this movie works well for the first half of it. It builds up a good atmosphere, and I realised during this movie why that worked, and why it worked for Japanese movies, but why it failed miserably for other "reality" movies, such as Paranormal Activity 2 and the like: the audience was scared by being shown the horror while the characters weren't. We get to see the ghosts and the nurse get up and wander around, so we know these things are going on, while the characters are peering at electronic devices and spouting off crap physics to explain everything. That gets the atmosphere going. (In PA2, the characters saw the eerie when the audience did, so the build up wasn't the same.)

However, the movie goes off the rails in the second half, where they suddenly start explaining the supernatural of it all, the movie really seems like it was a longer movie with scenes cut out, as it jumps around a lot. Not that it didn't always have a problem in that arena, with scenes changing tone from one shot to the next.

A lot budget piece that probably would have worked had they shot and compiled a complete movie.


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Wednesday, 28 September 2011

Vigil the Huntering

Can't say the club Travesty was my scene, seemed more like a place for tragic youngsters to hang out. However, we were there to meet the woman that started all this, so we trooped in and found ourselves a table. And over there was the woman we wanted to talk to. That was easy.

We head over (we are a subtle bunch) and the doctor hands her the amulet. No asking questions or anything first, just bam, on the table. She takes it happily, and then seems content to doll out a few tidbits of information. Looking around, I see the lead guy from the train with a mook enter the place and start looking around. It's amazing how quickly our groups breaks up, and myself, I blend back into a set of nearby shadows.

The woman we came for saunters off and disappears into the toilets, before leader and mook start their circuit of the place. They pass us all by without seeing us, and seem confused by this. A few of us take the opportunity to sneak out, but I wait until they leave before I do so as well. Although a little too quickly and encounter them in the lobby. However, I manage to sidle pass without comment from them as they are busy explaining why they were not planning on perv the women's toilets.

[Then it seems that JB, the punk with the tagging fetish, gets it into his head to infiltrate the top the club and set off a molotov cocktail. It gives the others a distraction whereby they can leave, and doesn't seem to have made the papers.]

We head back to the doctor's place, and the woman is waiting for us in darkness. We give her a preplanned fake amulet, but she isn't amused. She leaves, and the light comes on... at least, the light comes on and there's no sign of her, so we can only presume she's some kind of ninja.

After researching some of more about the items and finding out not a lot, we head out to a motel 6 to get some sleep where people don't know where we are. The next day, I'm not sure what the others are up to, but I got to open my store, even on a Sunday. It's not like anything bad will happen there.


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Tuesday, 27 September 2011

Lucky 7/11

I found out about the movie with the funny name due to LoadingReadyRun. Damn you!

So in this movie, Slevin is this guy that gets mistaken for some other guy, and gets kidnapped by two bad guys and told to kill someone/pay some money. And he gets hit in the stomach. A lot. Also in the nose, but more in the stomach. And there's this other guy who's playing a deep background game to turn all tables his way.

The problem is that this movie wants to be a comedy, but can't pull it off. And then the last half hour is too serious to pretend to be comedic any more. There's also lots of reveals and stuff, and I don't know if I've just reached my limit or something, but I just couldn't bring myself to be surprised by any of it. No, I didn't see it coming, but when it arrived it completely failed to overturn any expectations I had, and the movie was "yeah... there you go... how about that game, huh?" like it didn't really know what it was doing at that point either.

Yet, big names. Bruce Willis, Morgan Freeman, Sir Ben Kingsley. It should have worked better, and Josh Hartnett is also a guy that's in it.

A lot of a fizzle to this movie, and one that can be missed outside of hearing the weird title.


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Monday, 26 September 2011

DW: 6.12

So, how long before the toys are available? Not on Amazon yet. And again another instance, methinks, of Moffat script at the end.

So Gareth again turns in the comedy script with, do I detect, even more author insertion than before? Still... it is a funny script, so I'm not going to complain. And finally the Cybermat make their new series debut, along with more tatty Cybermen. (Are they doing this on purpose? Are they completely avoiding any kind of renewal for them due to the Dalek feedback?) Were the Cybermats designed by the marketing department? The Doctor already has a remote control ready, so even that's not going to be out of place in the packaging. All they need to finish it off would be a button to open and close the mouth with teeth nashing action! (Yeah, 'you have to be strong to fend it off', as if. Credibility fail.)

Then there's a baby thing. Oh, the wonderful laughs afforded by people thinking they are a couple with a baby. That's so fresh and innovative and never been done before... oh wait. Still, flash back to the Doctor speaking baby. And, let's face it, Matt Smith does a great turn in this episode. It may be more wacky, but he is more than willing to go there to help make the episode real.

If anything in this episode is to really draw criticism, I'm looking at the end sequence with River. Yes, need to set up the last episode, but it is really out of place in this episode. Why not make it a special item on its own? Or have it after the credits? Or something to keep it from breaking the flow of the episode.

Otherwise, a decent episode before the finale!

Next week: Oh the images flashing up on screen. Moffat, you better have a damn good pay off for all this!


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Sunday, 25 September 2011

The Guard

This was shown during the Film Festival, missed it then, but it came to the theatres afterwards. So, yay, I managed to watch The Guard.

An odd movie, this is about Sergeant Boyle, an Irish Garda (guardian / policeman), who's locale is selected as the place to do a drug trafficking deal. However, Boyle isn't a standard policeman, and for a while it's a toss up as to which side he would fall on (consider the first time we see him, trying drugs, and later selling guns). He also has to deal with FBI agent Wendell Everett, who is far more competent, but unliked in his dealings with the community. All that, and the drug dealers have no concerns about offing those in their way...

This isn't trying to be a likeable movie, it has some charm, but it does become an effort to continue watching. Boyle, played by Brendan Gleeson, does not present qualities that make him a hero, and Everett, played by Don Cheadle, gets undercut far too often to maintain credibility. By the time the ending rolls around, it's more the movie getting back to the typical scene than really playing out the characters as previously presented.

It's a movie worth watching, but one you have to be in the mood for.


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Friday, 23 September 2011

TW: Long Time Dead

As prequels to Miracle Day, there are three Torchwood novels which came out during Miracle Day, and I didn't start reading until after Miracle Day. Meh.

First up we have Long Time Dead by Sarah Pinborough, and it is filled with B- and C-stringers.

The "big name" in this book is the return (this isn't a spoiler, she's on the cover) of Suzie Costello. Yeah, that Suzie Costello who's died twice already. (Hey, she's pulled a Buffy!) And the other name is Tom Cutler. You remember, from Sarah's other novel Into the Silence. 'Cos everyone wanted to see them back... I guess?

Anyway, Suzie's back and people are dying. (Actually, considering this is Torchwood, that last part is redundant.) She got woken up after the events of Children of Earth, and is causing havoc by causing people to remember encountering Torchwood. Which seems to have happened a lot. So Sarah gets to spend a lot of time recounting wee vignettes of past scenes, and so the story progresses really slowly. Not that there is that much of it. Action switches around quite a few people, but not a lot actually happens.

Not a great start to this set.


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Thursday, 22 September 2011

You Can't Always House What You Want

I've just finished rewatching season 7 of House, so what better time to take in the start of season 8! (it was... um... on youtube... yeah... that's where I saw it... it's been taken down now, of course, don't try to look for it, but it was definitely there...)

Anyway, it has begun, and after the ending of season 7, with House having crashed the car into Cuddy's house, you got to wonder where they'll go, how will they come back from that... (Or they could just restart again from scratch with an entirely different hospital, or turn the series into one where House wanders from town to town, helping those he comes across, and turning into a huge green man when angered... although I might be thinking of something else...)

Anyway, again, we have the season opener, and it's a bit different, like the start of season 6. It doesn't answer where the series is going (aside from being a complete reboot, which I'd doubt they'd do), but it does show that House is, to some degree, taking responsibility for his actions, and not trying to be too big of an ass. (He is still an ass though, some character traits are constant.) There are some character moments that you see coming (still cheer them anyway), and, for a while, it is Lupus.

As I'm implied, I don't know where the series is going... but I'm here to go along with it!


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Tuesday, 20 September 2011

Mysterious Island

...isn't that brilliant.

This is a Japanese movie, and usually I a big fan of Japanese horror. Typically it has great atmosphere and really ups the creep factor. But this movie seems to be more is the style of "amateur filmmaker" than serious production. [Then again, I did also see Horny House of Horror and that was terrible too.]

In MI, a group of people head to an island as part of a Survivor-style TV show, but something goes wrong when they are attacked by tatami, and then are spooked by really bad filmed shots of a stuff boar model filmed from low angles. Things don't get much better when the actual horror/killing starts as it just seems random when attacks happen or not, and I did find it hard to keep track of who was killed, who wasn't, who was supposed to be paired with whom, who was tied up, etc., etc. And then...

The movie had a little trouble deciding if it was supernatural or the killer was simply skilled. Some 'natural' explanations are presented, but there are plenty of supernatural moments that make that hard to believe. That, combined with the low budget filming (a cat is represented by quick pans of a camera and a yowling noise), makes this a mess of a movie.

Which is a shame, as if it could have been straightened out a little more in terms of matching the result to the set up, it could have been very effective. As it is, not quite.


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Monday, 19 September 2011

Of Steam, Steel and Murder

On Storm Haven island (appearantly also known as Savage Island), we sit and plot and work out what is going on. Some of the prisoners make a break for it, and a journalist wants to know our life stories. But, after a month, we have something that might approximate a plan (or at least an intention), so off we go!

Bit of a plotting session. We had definite ideas about what to do, but needed time to sit down and work them out. (It's not like we have a board we could discuss them on or anything... presume people actually post.) All that for a new player to encounter. Not much for them to do, but them's the breaks.

Listen to Game 42. Only not through me. This time I did remember to start the recorder, but it partly crashed. It seemed to be recording, but this was a lie. Sigh. Maybe next time. (Perhaps I should use PowerGramo and Skype Recorder?)


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DW: 6.11

Wow, 90% filler, 10% actual series related. I'm going to go out on a limb and guess that Moffat wrote/rewrote a lot of the end of that episode.

How about that animatronic head, eh? At no point was there ever any doubt that that was an animitronic head. To be honest, the close up on the eye opening more than gave it away, and it didn't get any better from then on out. Yes, the director tried to disguise it in the salon(?) room, but it was always clearly motors under a rubber skin, with someone twiddling a remote control in an attempt to convey an expression. About as obvious as the fact that the minatour wasn't talking about himself.

But it's all about faith. Which can be destroyed by clowns, appearantly. (You know, I never had any problems with clowns.) And yay, Caitlin Blackwood returns! As for what the Doctor saw... I'm guessing himself. I remember Amy's Choice. And speaking of past episodes, I see someone pulled a Curse of Fenric here. That title was echoing through my head during the entire scene.

So that's it for Rory and Amy... and she's finally refered to as Amy Williams... yeah, right. That's about as believable as the Doctor regenerating mid series. Okay, that did happen in the old series, and I wouldn't entirely put it past Moffat to pull something like that to mix it up... but I just don't see it happening. Especially when I know what the last episode is called.

With most of the episode being filler, it just didn't inspire interest until the end. Mildly decent, will only be remembered for how it wrapped up.

Next week: Craig! I was wondering what episode he was in. Although this does indicate that this series is not ending with a two-parter (or it's a really surprising two parter). [Note: If you know about this, please do not tell me "oh, everyone knows that *X* will be occuring". I don't know, and prefer to be surprised by the episode.]


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Sunday, 18 September 2011

Team Xero #012

What's a man to do when only the G.O.D.S have F.I.R.E.?

Okay, the myth source is not exactly a subtle one, but it's the one that came to mind when thinking about this...


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Saturday, 17 September 2011

Walking the Warehouse

Here's a video I shot on my new Flip camera of the local Warehouse store. Now, for the international viewers, this is not a large store. For Wellington, where there isn't huge tracts of land to build large stores on, this is the largest Warehouse I've been in. (The one in Petone is also large. And some supermarket stores get up there as well.)

But the interesting point is that... no-one said: you can't film here! I'm holding up a camera, giving occasional commentary, and yet the most I get is a few odd looks. Huh.

Anyway, I intend to grab more video stuff, which will involve me getting out and about, because... I can. Although I do want to capture parts of Wellington you won't see on Google Street View. However, until it gets nicer weather:

(Viewable in glorious 720p!)


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Friday, 16 September 2011

Te Terminal

Ah, that's a great Billy T James movie, where he's stuck at the airport, but helps his cuzzies to... no, hang on, I saw the other one, with the Belgian Tom Hanks (he's identified as speaking Belgian in the subtitles).

In this version, Tom is at the airport, and can't leave due to his country going away, and the American in charge is a dick. He befriends everyone, and then the movie ends. Yeah, they spend a long time just dealing with his life at the airport. Which still makes for great viewing. In this movie, we celebrate the little victories with him. "He's worked out the quarters." There's a 'yay' moment (followed up by the American in charge being a dick). And there's the love story... there's another version made where it goes the other way, but it's nice to have a real moment preserved in the version that was kept.

Tom Hanks carries this movie, and does a great job of being likeable, which is largely his role in most of the movies where it is basically him. Catherine Zeta-Jones underplays her part, which works better than her usual over the top roles. And the rest of the cast doesn't get that much fleshed out either, but their roles again work well against Tom's performance.

So, yes, a 'feel good' movie. But sometimes you need those, and this is a good one.


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Thursday, 15 September 2011

The Carpet People

I've now read one of Terry Pratchett's oldest novels. And one he did recently. And they were the same novel! The Carpet People is a revision by an older Pratchett of something he wrote when younger. (Got it from Mighty Ape and I think it's even cheaper now than when I picked it up!)

He says in the introduction that his focus of fantasy has now changed, and so he's rewritten parts of it... and I have to say that this version of the novel is, well, rather generic Pratchett.

The set up of people living in the carpet is a good one, and Pratchett certainly plays it up, with different variations of people and creatures with strange names, and mixing in things we recognise from our world. The basic story is about a people forced to move and ending up changing the balance of peoples versus nominal monsters (the mouls are presented as monsters, but I never really got a good sense of what they were besides being presented as the monsters of the story).

And, as I said, it's rather generic. There isn't a huge arc here that will surprise anyone and even the story points can be ticked off a standard list. Clearly young Pratchett got a lot better (and who am I, unpublished schmuck, to say what should be going on), however aside from the setup of the People of the Carpet, there's isn't a lot here to recommend it.

I'm glad I got this, as a completest (although I will never have his sci-fi novels), but feel free to skip this, unless you really like anything Pratchett does.


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Wednesday, 14 September 2011

Duke Nukeming Forever

Yes, I'm slowly playing my way through Duke Nukem Forever. Some questions and answers....

You're playing a shooter?
Yes, I'm playing a shooter. I'm not a shooter fan, however I have this game, so...

You're playing this shooter?
Yeah... I gave into nostalgia. This is 'no brain, just kill things' like Doom. Well, that was the idea...

Ah, but I'm guessing you're not doing well then?
I'm a little more trouble with 'where to next?' Some of the pathway isn't entirely obvious. And I have died quite a few times, even being on Easy.

Are you resorting to cheating?
The really annoying aspect of DNF is that... cheats are built in, but they have to be activated. However, they are activated by completing the game on at least Normal, if not Hard. Hey, if I could complete it on Hard, I wouldn't need cheats!

Where are you up to?
As of writing, I'm about a third in, down in the Hive. However... I'm now considering, do I start over on Normal so I can activate the cheats? I really doubt I'll have the interest to play more than once completely through without said cheating...

How are you liking it?
To be honest... don't buy this game. There are a few moments that remind me of the original games to be fun (found an RPG? Oh yes!), but... I should have saved my money. (Got it cheaper through CDWOW, so not full price, but I pre-ordered it instead of waiting for reviews. Too much nostalgia...)

But would you play it again?
Having a hard enough time playing it once. Unless I start over on Normal to get the cheats, I doubt it. Pity, as with the cheats I probably would go through this multiple times. Mindless killing computer sprites is nice stress release...

(EDIT: That all said... found a way to activate the console so I can cheat whenever I want, so will probably complete the game in Easy to get whatever achievements before running around in God mode with all weapons...)


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Tuesday, 13 September 2011

Half-Lifening 2

Yes, I'm slowly playing my way through Half-Life 2. Some questions and answers....

You're playing a shooter?
Yes, I'm playing a shooter. I'm not a shooter fan, however I have this game, so...

You're playing this shooter?
I saw it on Spoiler Warning, and since I prefer a taster before I get into a game, especially a shooter, after seeing this, hearing the rave, and this is Valve, so decided to give it a go.

Ah, but I'm guessing you're not doing well then?
I am doing better than I expected. Only died a few times, have been on low health more often. Wasn't sure what level I was playing it at, turns out Easy. That'll help explain it.

Are you resorting to cheating?
I definitely have the option. However, I'm not there yet. Since I prefer the story to shooting, the temptation is certainly there, but haven't activated anything. Yet. When I go for the Developer Commentary, definitely will be activating it then.

Where are you up to?
As of time of writing, just entering Ravenholm. So roughly a third into it. Hey, I said I was going slowly. Sunk about three hours into it so far.

How are you liking it?
Valve definitely know what they are doing. I'm not sure I would be picking up on all the atmospheric details without the Spoiler Warning crew alerting me to them. That I haven't flipped the cheat switch to on says a lot about me willing to let this unfold and be a part of that.

But would you play it again?
Aside from for the Developer Commentary... probably not. I've got a lot of other games, and this isn't clamouring for me to revisit it. (But I might have changed my mind by the end.)


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Monday, 12 September 2011

DW: 6.10

Huh... um... wow... need some time to digest that. Quite the powerful story. And shows quite effectively you don't need a big roaring killing monster to tell a Doctor Who story. (Although I'm glad they don't do this sort of show every week.)

The Moffat series has always been more willing to experiment with story telling and time, and this is no different. We've seen occasional glimpses into the future before with them, but this confronts us with the reality of actually living full time with the consequences. And with only the core three cast members, and even then the Doctor is largely sidelined, this becomes a very poignant moment. "You're Amy. And he's Rory." That's a line that sticks with you.

Karen Gillan finally gets a decent acting gig, having to give a far more realised portrayal of someone who, up to now, has largely been "feisty" and "with her boys". And this works. Not perfectly, still some uncertainty there, but if young Amy could have this as well, she would work so much better. And Arthur Darvill delivers a great Rory too. It would be amazing to see how the actors prepared for the final through-the-TARDIS-door moment, but I'm sure the actual filming was long and tedious and full of stops and starts for technical reasons.

This is a story more for the adults than the kiddies. I'd like to think it gives some real depth to the TARDIS companions, but I know about the realities of TV scripting. Still, damn fine show.

Next week: Lots like filler with a big roaring killing monster.


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Sunday, 11 September 2011

Torchwood: Miracle Day Ten

It still manages to take its time, right up to the end! Gaargh!

At least they had Gwen acknowledge the full impact of what they were doing, ie bringing death to everyone. And, at the end, it was slap bang Torchwood's act that brought it back. Although I'm not sure why everyone hung around and let them do it. There's a difference between "don't shoot him" and "restrain him by some other method than shooting him". Yes, picky to the end, me.

(Speaking of picky, RTD, as expected, completely fails to explain anything, including why the Blessing made Jack mortal/immortal.)

Anyway, this is it, the full she-bang... and... I just can't bring myself to say 'yay' about the arc. Although they go world spanning and impact on all of humanity... at the end, just like in Children of Earth, come to think of it, they bring it back to a small room in which a couple of people make a sacrifice, and the whole world impact side of things is completely forgotten. Indeed, the next scene is Esther's funeral, and the killing of the 'traitor' and predictable reveal of the nature of Rex (and if that actor doesn't want to come back, oops...).

The ending just doesn't match the reach the rest of the series was trying to attain.

...and I don't even want to start on the 'it was just a trial run' scene...

Next time: We can only hope not, at this point.


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Saturday, 10 September 2011

Block the Attack

It's a UK movie, not a US one, so it's already got a head start there. It's that movie about some crazy kids who come together to overcome adversity...

Only, in this case, the kids are a bunch of hoodlums that start the movie attacking a woman (who later forgives them), and the adversity is an alien invasion. Although it's all all right because in the end the kids learn a valuable life lesson about being themselves (the lead character/kid is called Moses, gee, laying the metaphor on too thin?).

While the aliens are just a conduit for the kids to learn to like themselves, I preferred the aliens over the kids. Indeed, given the beginning, I'm not the only one rooting for the aliens to kick their asses. And the aliens are pretty cool. Completely black with glowing mouths, nice! (Now we need a movie where the aliens are invisible... oh, wait.)

A lot of people did like this movie, and, as I mention, the effects are great, but the story just doesn't work, and not even a minor role by Nick Frost can save it for me.


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Friday, 9 September 2011

Of Steam, Steel and Murder

We're still on board the airship... and, because of certain activities, we are plunging towards our doom, but not in the way you'd expect. Craziness continues as the fight with Harris comes to a head with Bishop vs Harris...

...and the players are without chips. We didn't refresh between sessions, so we are running low and many of us run out. Good skill and lucky dice rolls are needed to stop from dying, and in many cases it's "spend to live" as opposed to "spend to do well". Fortunately, a chip spend between sessions from me created a very useful resource to call upon.

Hear all about it in Game 41. Although not from me. I completely forgot to record it. On the other hand, my connection dropped a few times which probably would have crashed the recorder anyway... as of writing, Bert has part 1 up, and will put up part 2 within the week.


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When you have a plot that is "father trains 16 year old daughter to be an assassin", there are some immediate plot points you think of. First, that she'll end up interacting with the real world, and thus want to choose life over death, taking this as an affirming movie. There seem to be less of those with that set up these days. Alternatively, she'll assassinate and have "closure" as the movie decides it should be evaluated. Certainly, that's the basic ideas...

But then this is a basic movie. Hanna is let loose to assassinate, and goes out into the world, and the plot is entirely about people tracking her down. No real sub plots (although there are "twists" and revelations that, again, you could guess from the opening set up of the movie). And when the end fight started, completely saw where it would end. (I will agree with some others that could easily be more in this "universe", although there doesn't need to be...)

Saoirse Ronan does a lot of work in this movie, being in almost every scene and doing a lot of physical stunts. Eric Bana also gets a few scenes to show off his physical skills, but I'm recalling his Hulk days (not to mention his comedy beginnings) so don't buy this too much. Cate Blanchett has... an odd accent that appears and disappears. I've seen her too tougher.

Overall, I'd rate this movie... "meh". Could be better, could be worse.


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Thursday, 8 September 2011

Jiro Dreams of Sushi

He does indeed. In fact, the film begins with him telling you about the sushi ideas he gets in his dreams.

Jiro Dreams of Sushi is about, strangely enough, Jiro, and his unusual sushi restaurant. This is one of those places that is at the high end of the craft, and that comes through with the care with which Jiro makes sushi, but also the entire process of buying the fresh fish, cooking the rice right, and cutting the food in just the right amount.

We also meet the others in the restaurant, his family members, and a food critic, and find out that not all of his success is independent of the others (and indeed his son might be the reason he is highly regarded). This also shows off aspects of the Japanese culture which are just fascinating to me (if anyone knows of a good series that explains modern Japanese culture, I'd like to read it in the comments).

Good movie, although could potentially be tightened in a few places.


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Wednesday, 7 September 2011

Vigil the Huntering

The next day, looking in the paper [Craig, the GM, has actual props! Woo!], there's an item about the attack on the subway, where they say there were four dead bodies. I know of only one, but you know how those reporters are.

(Others go about their jobs. Dr Cottage finds a Nazca pendent, stolen from the museum, in his pocket. Jane and Robert go on the run in some rather effective disguises. JB goes boxing and continues tagging.

Robert and Jane try to find the priest they met, but have no luck. Cottage manages to clean up the image of the South American woman on the train, but has no idea who she is.)

The museum curator, Heinrich Koenig, turns up in my shop, asking about the attack. When I mention the woman, he seems interested in her, and thinks her responsible for taking the item from the museum. As I can't help him further, he leaves his card with me.

(Cottage joins up with Robert and Jane, and convinces them that there is something dangerous going on, and they need to stick together. They ring me and we agree to meet.) While heading out, I spy the kid tagging in an alley, and chase him down, although my sense of justice takes a blow when he bashes into me with a baton. He needs a turn in the army to knock some sense into him. [Ah, the joys of getting PCs together.]

Joining forces, we go to Cottage's and pool our information. Robert proves knowledgeable, and tells us more about the amulet and that Heinrich belongs to Ashwood Abbey, a thoroughly disreputable lot. Cottage gets a phone call from a woman (the woman from the train?) who tells him to meet her at Travesti, a night club. He grabs all of us, and after getting suitable clothing, we head there...


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Tuesday, 6 September 2011

The Fifth Destination

It's the movie that keeps on dying. While there are slasher fics with higher body count, this is the movie franchise that keeps you hanging with the build up of 'how will they die?'

The most amazing thing about this movie is how fragile everything is. Bridges are made of cardboard, windows of soap bubbles and people of dry twigs. Physics has always had a rocky relationship with this series, and here we have screws that manage to stay point up, a statue completely severs a head, and one person with weak glasses immediately goes into hands-out-blind mode when she loses them (despite being fine without them earlier on). Yeah, no problems there...

But the point of the movie is that people die... no wait, it's that you need to kill someone else so that you die. And these are the bunches of douche bags to go and do that. Seriously, you hope they all die in the beginning, they do, but then they are alive, and you get to see them all die again by the end. Yay!

And there's a special recap of the series moment at the end... I don't know if I should say this, but I laughed. And throughout the movie too. When I see special effects that give up on physics so, what other reaction is there?

In my opinion, the best FD was 2, but this one isn't terrible, considering it is the fifth retread of the formula...


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Monday, 5 September 2011

DW: 6.9

So, what ghosts was Mark Gatiss trying to exorcise? Of course, I spent a lot of time thinking "hey, it's that guy from Ashes to Ashes."

Confirm something for me: it is immediately obvious they are in a doll house, right? I jumped straight there when I saw them wake up, so were they trying to make it a surprise? We all saw the doll house in there when the cupboard was opened, and the Doctor is quick to elucidate the point as a throw away moment, but... was it something that was designed to confuse people? Was anyone confused? Other reviews will tell...

As spooky stories go, it was quite good. Nice direction meant that some moments, such as the build-up to the first doll reveal, worked really well, creating a nice tense atmosphere. However, I completely gave up on any worries as soon as Amy became a doll (to give Karen more time to film the next episode?), because we all know the companion will be safe, thus everyone will be brought back to normal. It's getting so it's rare that everybody doesn't live, and even these kid focused episodes could do with a decent killing or two.

And how about that kid, huh? I've yet to watch Confidential, but I'm guessing they'll gush over how good he was. Certainly didn't have to bother with a lot of lines to learn, but again the director did a good job of getting a good performance out of him. [Hmm... google... Richard Clark! Well done that man, hire him again!]

Of course, having a kid, one is reminded of Fear Her, only this was far better. I'm not going to rate this the best episode of the series, but... it's up high on the list.

Next time: Doctor-less?


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Sunday, 4 September 2011

Torchwood: Miracle Day Nine

Wow, even in episode nine... they are still padding things out!

Huh, looks like I should have gone for the obvious of Danes joining Torchwood, 'cos that's what the writers did. Of course they have to team up, why wouldn't they? Not like that couldn't have done some plot line that would actually not be expected! And, at the end, Danes will probably be the one to switch the Miracle off (as someone will have to sacrifice themselves). Either that or betray them. Or betray them and then sacrifice himself. Sigh.

And the father gets taken after a lot of screen time is spent on that plot line. Although, it seems that no-one has considered the important point that as soon as the Miracle is switched off, he's going to die anyway. Not as poignant when you realise the good guys are going to be the one to kill him. (Now not taking bets on them saving the day right before he gets burnt.)

Hey, evil women wear red. That's a lesson of this episode. With Jenny^H^H^HLisa being a redhead and wearing red, we also have CIA woman wearing red too. How much of an obvious signifier are they trying for here? Just as well no-one's noticed her acting over the top suspicious or anything. (I have a big problem with how bad guys in general are portrayed, which can be a blog post on its own.)

Anyway, we finally have everything set up for the last episode, and the Blessing revealed... a big wound or something... the hell? Oh, they better pay off this brilliantly, with a wonderful explanation and not some hand-waving crap spouted off by someone who doesn't actually care about the story when he can have two guys kissing... oh, shit...

Next week: we get an entire series in one episode as they finally have to say something about what's going on. Oh, and I'm guessing RTD will write the final episode?


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Saturday, 3 September 2011


This movie sounds like it could be quite hokey. Good ol' boy, works with horses, imparts wisdom to the people who own then... but Buck is just an incredibly nice person, and this is a very watchable film about him and his life.

He works with horses and with people who have horses, and it's amazing just how good with horses he is. And we get to see him work with the horses, and we get to find out about his (rather harsh to begin with) home life. This film has a good balance between the two aspects, unlike some I've seen, and by the end of it you just think Buck would be a great person to know as a friend.

I enjoy a good movie with passion, and Buck certainly has that. Definitely worth checking out.


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Friday, 2 September 2011


I didn't intend to talk about this. The basic idea looked like yet another generic 'couple gets stalked by killer' set up, so I thought to watch it, then move on. However, there is one aspect of it that makes me decide to blog, and another aspect that demands attention in that (this) blog post...

First point... Australia, back the frick away from this movie. Seriously, completely disown it. Currently, it has Australia plastered all over the opening credits, and it's set in the Great Barrier Reef, and...

It is a complete crap fest. The first third is a couple getting away to a lonely island and there they are... for the first part of the movie... a few things get moved about, but otherwise we are watching them wander around the island... the hell? If it weren't for fast forward, I would have stopped there. But then, in part two, they meet some smugglers, and get pwned by them. If it wasn't for the """horror""", that'd be that, but no, something happens off screen, and then we move onto part three. The couple break up and are against each other, then die stupidly. Seriously, really stupidly. If you look at the poster on IMDB, the girl screaming in the water with blood, and then when you get to that moment... a) everyone knew that was going to happen to someone, b) what the freak? That death is this """""""horror"""""" movie???

Gah! It is not worth watching, even on fast forward. I don't care if I spoiled anything for you, 'cos you shouldn't be watching it in the first place!

Australia, as a New Zealander I have to rag on you... but you don't deserve that...


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Thursday, 1 September 2011


Footnote is an... unusual father v son story. In the world of academic achievement, what does it mean when the son and father are in the same field, and yet one is far more popular than the other? Will the son backstab the father, will the father condemn the son?

Not that this film is as serious as the above makes out. Although purported to be a comedy, it is a light piece, with some humourous moments, but it's more 'light drama' than hilarity. It's in yiddish with subtitles, so, as ever, you're looking at the pictures and reading the text, trying to get everything in... however... I do wonder if I missed something. Either in the translation, or something wasn't translated, or it's a cultural thing... when the ending came, I wasn't sure what to read into it. Fine, movies shouldn't handhold people, but... what exactly was the outcome there? Good? Bad? Did the right thing happen? Are secrets buried never to be spoken of again? I don't know.

Anyway, yes, good film, worth seeing. Although it might help to have another interpreter standing by.


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