Tag Archives: movies

Grinning Skull at the movies: Avengers: Age of Ultron

9 May

So while I am busy on the PC today, I thought I’d have a rant about the latest Marvel Cinematic Universe‘s latest entry to it’s continuity. Avengers: Age of Ultron.

If you ask if I’m a DC or Marvel comics fan, Marvel wins hands down. That’s why I was quite excited to get to see Avengers: Age of Ultron and see if it was living up to all the hype. Don’t worry, if you aint seen it, I won’t spoil it (much…)

The Avengers was never my first choice with the comics, although Thor, Cap, and Mr Stark’s separate adventures interested me, I always preferred the west coast avengers comic! Still, the way the MCU is going, any number of other characters could pop up for a cameo, so as a marvel fan, it’d be worth the watch.

This time, there was no need for any introductions or origins, straight into the action attacking a Hydra base, all guns blazing. Very impressive. It’s a shame that overall the story felt rushed, but I guess with all the information and characters to fit into it, some of it would suffer as a result.

It’s true the action scenes are second to none and I for one can’t fault it. There’s some mad comic book chaos which is welcomed, so if your a fan of pure comic calamity, its worth seeing just for that.

I’m going to pick out a few pro’s and con’s that niggled me during, without giving any major spoilers away.

Firstly, new characters. We’ll start with the main baddie, Ultron. Ultron had always been a fave of mine, and I think he was portrayed reasonably well. I had thought it would be cool to see him on the screen for decades, and they did not disapoint. James Spader was a good choice to voice the meglomanical menace.

Vision: Again, the vision is a pretty cool character, and as far as the look is concerned, they nailed it, however, his introduction seemed squeezed and more contrived than I’d like. Also nice to see him kicking ass.

The Maximoff Twins: Pretty much hated both the acting and portrayal. Didn’t feel anything like them. A better version of quicksilver exists in the recent X-Men: Days of future past. Their costumes and look were poor. I’m glad this version of quicksilver died (oops, sorry!)

Hawkeye: This time they spent a little more effort fleshing out a role for him, making him a bigger player. Still think he needs the mask to make him feel more “proper”

On a side note, it was good to see a few faces from the other movies, Falcon, Warmachine and other bit players that’ll pop up again in the MCU (Klaw in the new Black Panther movie perhaps?)

On to the Story. it was just OK, I suppose, not great. I guess if your looking for high brow and intellectual then this isn’t it (it’s the comics after all..) I’ve heard lots of people going on about how the plot is getting convoluted now, given all the crossovers and movies, and that it’s getting harder for the casual viewer to follow. I think not, rather the opposite, too basic and bare, Whedon focuses more on the relationships between the characters and not the ins and outs. Could have been better, but I understand the constraints with the whole jigsaw.

I guess, to sum up. It’s an OK movie, but it’s just that. Nothing more. Will I watch the next installents of the MCU? Fuck yeah!, of course! (but then, I would watch any old shite…)

3 Skulls out of 5.

 

Marvel fans rejoice!! Spiderman joins the MCU (Marvel Cinematic Universe!)

11 Feb

spider-man-avengers

Good news for Marvel fans, is that finally Spidey is getting involved in the mighty MCU (Marvel Cinematic Universe)

If you remember the email leaks from the recent Sony hack, it was said that Both Marvel/Disney and Sony were in talks to get together to do a deal on using him in the same movies as the avengers and their other properties. (Which always has been a little strange since Marvel own Spiderman, yet years ago pre Disney buyout, forwent their rights to making  films about him)

It looks like his first outing will probably be in the next captain America movie: Civil War (in which he plays a big role in the comics continuity) Will this forge a way to their other characters that the rights are owned by other studios to make a crossover?, such as the X-men lot and the F4 (rights owned by Fox) Given that even Sony had a sort of agreement with Fox to show each others trailers during the recent Days of Future past and The ill fated, Amazing Spiderman 2, I think the likelyhood for this mashup will occur. (Well, again its not really a mashup if your a comic fan, Marvel characters tend to star in each others storylines on a regular basis!)

Tis’ a shame that Andrew Garfield probably won’t be reprising his role, but I’m sure it won’t matter too much (I preferred Toby anyway) and were told that there won’t be another reboot with the origins (yawn)

I, as loads of other Marvel fans welcome this news as what we’ve wanted for a long time. Spidey has fought alongside the avengers a heap of times, so it’s about time the execs from both companies have agreed on this deal, which might not have happened if the last Spidey film had done well. (Did you see the last one? piss poor!) I hope that Fox has the same good sense to follow suit and help develop a bigger and more complex MCU with all sorts of heroes and villains turning up in the features.

Even with the DC universe on screen making a debut with the Superman vs Batman movie soon, There’s no way DC will ever top this. Ever. Stick that in your pipe and smoke it batfans! (Seriously though, I actually like both batman and superman movies, so I’ll be watching all of them anyway! Quite partial to the Gotham series too…)

Nuff said true believers!

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/entertainment-arts-31356142

Fan Vs Fan, Tales of Star Wars fandom and extended universes…

14 May
English: Opening logo to the Star Wars films

English: Opening logo to the Star Wars films (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

In times gone by when I was a nipper, I remember the old crappy plastic chewbacca costume I used to own. How I’d run around the place pretending to be the famous wookie co pilot of the millenium falcon, I was nuts about Star Wars.

As luck would have it, I’m still a fan today. You know when someone asks if your choice is Trek or Wars, wars wins hands down everytime. Even though I’m not a die hard fanboy, I still enjoy the franchise, and I’m quite stoked about the news of all things episode 7. For us old school original trilogy fans, it’s what we’ve been waiting for for ages, all the old gang back to save the galaxy! Wahoo!

I like to follow the latest movie news in general, but I visit a news blog as often as I can that keeps upto date on the latest developments on the new movie  starwars7news.com, it’s a pretty good site and a good read if you like all things wars.

What does strike me as addictive reading over there, is the comments sections after each post, sometimes rather odd, sometimes funny and sometimes quite embarrassed for some of the saddo’s that post there.

You see, what really intregues me is the sheer poison and hatred that seems to be generated by the various sects of fandom over there. On one hand, you have die hard fans of the OT (original Trilogy) who think all the later additions to the wars verse is just not good, while you have PT fans (Prequel Trilogy) who talk shit about Annakin being the chosen one all the time (and darth Plagueis). Then you’ve got EU fans (Extended universe) who love all the crappy spin off novels, comics and so forth.

But guess what? They all seem to be at each others throats over there for some reason! I know that in some fans it instills a savage passion about the whole franchise, but come on, it’s a fucking film.

I’m not kidding about some of the vitriol spouted on there I’ve read, usually pretty childish and disturbing (By disturbing I mean grown ups swearing and arguing about star wars, it’s pathetic) but, I find myself visiting regularly going there, just to see what shite gets posted! It’s strangely addictive to read how these sub sections of the star wars community are willing to clash with each other, as well as all the speculative fanfic fantasists that offer their predictions of how they think the new trilogy will link back to what has been set as canon.

Funniest thing I think is now that Lucasfilm/Disney have pretty much wiped out most of the EU garbage post Return of the Jedi, this has turned the EU fans rabid at times, they simply will not let go of the mostly piss poor un-star warsy material that was generated in the time there was a star wars hiatus.

Don’t take my word for it, go and have a read your self, I find it hard to stomach myself at times, and I feel ashamed to class myself as a fan if this is the kind of no marks that make us laid back fans look like dicks!

Myself, I’m a fence sitter, there’s bits of all the star wars stuff I like and dislike, but remembering 1977 and seeing it in my local cinema, I’d class myself in the OT (as long as I can hit the rest with a lightsaber, I’m in!!)

Here’s to Episode 7 being some good!! (hopefully…)

Now did I ever tell you about the time I could have been an extra in the Phantom menace…..

May the force be with you……

 

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Dropship Horizon Blog Launches Titanium Dropship 2014 ; 15mm sci fi miniature painting comp!

17 Jan

For those of you out there into 15mm sci-fi, Dropship Horizon have launched their comp for 2014. There are loads of 15mm companies putting up stuff as prizes, so if you think your skills at painting and modelling in 15mm with a science fiction flavour are up to it, get yourself along and take part.

I might see you in the entries, (time permitting) but you never know! There’s plenty of scope in the three categories to get your brain cells into ignition, plus it’s great to see the emphasis solidly on the whole 15mm scifi wargaming genre.

Kinda makes me think we shouldn’t be doing some kind of comp, here at the Grinning Skull? what do you think?

Anyway, go check it out and get involved!

DROPSHIP HORIZON: Titanium Dropship 2014 – 15mm sci fi painting competition.

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Classic Horror: Clownhouse. (1989)

22 Nov

It’s been a while since I shared a classic horror movie with you, and I thought I’d make it relevant. Clownhouse.

The story follows Casey (Nathan Forrest Winters), a normal boy whose life is constantly influenced by his intense fear of clowns. His two older brothers, Geoffrey (Brian McHugh) and Randy (Sam Rockwell), are mostly disobliging. One night, the three boys are left alone when their mother visits relatives, so they decide to visit a local circus for a night of amusement, despite Casey’s uncontrollable coulrophobia. Meanwhile, the local state insane asylum has sent a majority of the hospital’s inmates to the carnival for therapy, but three psychotic mental patients break away from the group and kill three clowns, taking their makeup and costumes…

Enjoy (or not if you dislike clowns…)

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