X-Force Movie Line-Up: Who Makes Up The Roster?

x-force

With the San Diego Comic Con next week, the net is buzzing about an announcement for a X-Force movie. Bleeding Cool has been speculating about it all week, and X-Force co-creator Rob Liefeld has been tweeting up a storm. That said who gets to be in the movie?

I would assume that it would be the original era, as opposed to the X-Force as Wolverine’s covert hit squad. That said, it would be safe to assume that Cable would be in this and would be front and center with the team. I would assume that the movie would branch off from X-Men: The Last Stand, with a group of mutant students from the Xavier Institute going on their own under his leadership.

You would need someone to be a more direct counterpoint to Cable, and I think that is where Cannonball comes in. But as far as the rest of who should (or shouldn’t) be in the movie is pretty up in the air.

Domino makes sense, as she kind of serves as a second to Cable. Warpath brings a unique choice, as they haven’t really had any Native American characters in a super hero movie before. Having Rictor and Sunspot, who are Mexican and Brazillian respectively, might help make the movie easier to market in Latin America. But would they make Rictor be openly gay in the movie as he is in the comics? The same question could be raised if they bring in his boyfriend Shatterstar into the film. That would be another first, too, with having a gay super hero in a mainstream movie.

Sadly, I don’t think anyone would notice or miss Feral and Boom Boom if they weren’t included in the film other than me. So what do you think?

 

Some Costuming Fun In Captain America: The Winter Soldier

captain-amerca-the-winterIt might be well over a year away, but that doesn’t mean that we can’t start speculating and talking about what we do know. The last couple of weeks have revealed some new information about Captain America: The Winter Soldier.

I guess the most dramatic is that Cap has a new look. Actor Chris Evans will be sporting a new Captain America uniform that borrows most of its design and inspiration from the Steve Rogers: Super Soldier era when James “Bucky” Barnes had adopted the Captain America mantle. It’s also another neat tie between the Marvel Cinematic Universe, the Ultimate Universe and Marvel proper, as Nick Fury Jr. sports this same outfit. And that character is based on Samuel L.Jackson’s portrayal of Nick Fury in The Avengers, which is based on the Ultimate Universe Nick Fury.

captain-amerca-the-winter-s

Speaking of Bucky, the Winter Soldier-ized version of the character looks to play a big role in the film. The way they have Sebastian Stan dressed up and wigged (is that even a word?) looks exactly the way the character was designed by Steve Epting and Butch Guice, right down to the cybernetic arm.

As much as I’m interested to see how Anthony Mackie looks as the Falcon, I’m more intrigued to see what Batroc the Leaper is going to look like. I think it’s awesome that UFC champ Georges St-Pierre is playing him, but his real-life no-nonsense-ness (I know that is not a word) really contrasts how cartoony the character is. I guess we’ll find out when the movie is released on April 4, 2014.

Iron Man 3: Tony Stark’s Last Stand

iron-man-3

This weekend I saw Iron Man 3 which finishes probably the best trilogy in super hero movies. Tony Stark is back and he is a bit of a mess.

Since the events of The Avengers, he has been suffering from severe bouts of anxiety as to his role in being a self-appointed protector of mankind. Things get even more complicated for Stark as he has to fight off a new global terrorist known as the Mandarin, who has struck at him first by attempting to murder Stark’s longtime driver/bodyguard/assistant Happy Hogan and then launching an aerial attack on Stark’s Malibu home.

It turns out that this latest threat to Stark and the world at large is tied to Aldrich Killian and his quasi research company/terrorist group Advanced Idea Mechanics. Unfortunately, no one in the movie version of AIM wears the beloved yellow bee keeper’s suits. Killian is upset that Stark blew him off at a millennial New Year’s Eve event and has spent the last thirteen years perfecting a regenerative healing technology (kind of like Wolverine) that was coincidentally developed by a scientist that Stark had a one night stand with that same night. Unfortunately, this bio-tech called Extremis is extremely volatile and can be used to make explosive soldiers. Not to mention, Killian has kidnapped Stark’s love interest Pepper Potts.

This all leads Stark to face the biggest challenge of his life, stopping both Killian and the Mandarin and rescuing Pepper while not having access to his usual arsenal. Our hero is able to save the day with more than a little help from his friends James Rhodes (sans his War Machine armor) and Pepper (who has gained some extraordinary abilities of her own after becoming infected with Extremis). But the battle that Stark had with himself in overcoming his own fears was much more important than his struggle with Killian and AIM.

I loved how they made the hero seem so vulnerable, but only in his own mind. Yes, he’s Tony Stark, one of the smartest and most successful men on the planet. But in his own mind he was done for. He pulls himself together at the right time to protect what is most important to him. The resulting story is very compelling and isn’t overshadowed by robotic armor and a billion explosions.

Plot aside, there were a lot of other details that I liked. Here they are in no particular order.

  • The movie borrows a lot of concepts from Warren Ellis’ “Extremis” storyline. This gets acknowledged by the filmmakers in a roundabout way, as the movie’s president shares a last name with the writer. 
  • Don Cheadle was awesome as War Machine and I liked how they were able to tie the Iron Patriot armor into the Marvel Cinematic Universe, especially since they don’t have access to the Norman Osborn character.
  • The scenes with Stark hiding out in Tennessee and befriending the kid inventor Harley were really funny and sweet at the same time, with the younger one being more optimistic of Stark’s skills.
  • The Ben Kingsley Mandarin character had an unbelievable plot swerve and was acted so well. If you haven’t seen the film yet or have no interest in it,

What I also liked was how they tied up the loose ends of the movie series. For now it seems like another Robert Downey Jr. Iron Man film may be unlikely, but they smartly found a way that satisfactorily ends the trilogy that can allow Downey to revisit the character or relaunch the franchise with someone else. But until that happens, Iron Man 3 finishes the greatest super hero movie trilogy of all time.

Spawn: The Movie

Did you know that this summer is the fifteenth anniversary of Spawn? Todd McFarlane’s devilish vigilante made his movie debut on August 1, 1997 and I’ve finally gotten around to seeing the movie. So what did I think?

It’s kind of hard to judge this movie. The plot is pretty straight forward; military operative Al Simmons is killed by his corrupt commander Jason Wynn and makes a deal with the devil to lead the forces of the underworld in exchange to be able to be able to see his fiancée (who happened to have had his child and married his best friend). There’s another deal that the devil made with Wynn, one that will pretty much start the apocalypse (there is a cardiac device that will trigger a series of explosions and release a plague if his heart stops) and allow the devil to rule what’s left of mankind.

Simmons’ conflict comes from his struggle with avenging his death. If he takes the advice of the demonic clown the Violator, Simmons will kill Wynn and bring on the end of the world. But if he follows Cagliostro, a former agent of the devil who was able to break free, he can save not only the world–but his former lover Wanda, his child and his best friend–from Wynn. And because deep down Simmons cares for these people, he follows the fallen angel to become an embodiment of justice. It makes sense to me.

Unfortunately, the special effects in this film were really distracting. By 1997′s standards, I guess they were groundbreaking. But watching it today, a lot of the CGI animation (like Spawn’s cape, the Violator’s demon form, and any of the scenes in hell with the devil’s legions) just reminded me too much of the Playstation games I enjoyed from that era. After doing some research about the film’s director and co-writer Mark A.Z. Dippé, it’s not surprising that the film was so visual effects heavy; he used to be an animator for Industrial Light and Magic.

The makeup and costuming effects were very well done. John Leguizamo looked utterly disgusting as the Violator’s clown form (and his one-liners were both cheesy and well played). Michael Jai White looked convincing in his Spawn makeup/armor, even though it did remind me of the Guyver. But it worked, except for one scene where Spawn was riding a motorcycle and his head was clearly painted onto a motorcycle helmet.

So why should you watch this film? Ultimately Spawn is a period piece, not in the sense that it shows off trends or what it was like to live in the 1990s.It’s a look back on what was considered cutting edge at that time. And in 1997 this film was cutting edge. Unfortunately, viewing this film in 2012, the film doesn’t hold up too well due to its over-reliance on special effects. On a positive, the movie is a fairly faithful adaptation of McFarlane’s comics, and Spawn was considered a modest box office success that started the comics movie boom of the late 90s early 00s. Without this, there wouldn’t have been Blade or X-Men which really got the comics film ball rolling. To sum it up, this is an average film that was important in the context of its era.

I Wish We Were Getting Joe Carnahan’s Daredevil

Did you know that director Joe Carnahan almost was in charge of a new Daredevil adaptation? The mastermind behind the recent A-Team movie and Smoking Aces (one of my favorite movies of the last decade or so) put together this sizzle/teaser to Fox for a reboot of the Daredevil franchise. So how did he do it?

Combining classic comic art with seventies crime/gang films like The Warriors and Serpico, this is amazing. It’s the gritty, sleazy New York that was just as much a character as it was a setting in Frank MIller’s Daredevil comics.

Unfortunately, Fox has to start filming the movie by October 10. If they do not start by then, the rights to the character revert back to Marvel. It looks that this film will be relegated to what could have been status.

After seeing this, I have to say that this is the Daredevil movie that I want to see. Or a Power Man and Iron Fist picture. It’s gritty, it’s dark but at the same time cartoonish, just like those great urban martial arts films of the seventies.

As a fan, I’m really glad that this pitch was made public. You can follow Joe on Twitter.

Let’s Talk About The Man of Steel Trailer Teaser

Viewers of The Dark Knight Rises were treated to a trailer for next year’s Zack Snyder Superman film Man of Steel. It really is a teaser, as it doesn’t necessarily tell you anything about the film. It does look like the film is more in line with the Christopher Nolan Batman films then the Marvel Avengers series.

Snyder has been charged with rebooting the character’s film franchise, which has been pretty dormant for about twenty-five years. Let’s face it, the less that is said about Superman Returns is the better. And that wasn’t even a bad film; it just came across as a love letter to Richard Donner’s take on the character.

Man of Steel has to be a good; the fate of the character depends on in. His non-comics reader popularity is at an all time low; Batman, Spider-Man and the Avengers have all surpassed him. But after seeing this, I don’t know I’m excited. The whole point of a trailer–let alone a teaser–is to get the audience on board. Unfortunately, there was nothing really super about this. I’m not sure why, but this just seems kind of bland. Superman literally needed to come back with a bang and not a whimper.

Is it just me?

The Dark Knight Rises Review

Can you think of a better way to spend your birthday then seeing the final chapter of the Christopher Nolan Batman series of films? I couldn’t think of one either and spent this morning going out to see The Dark Knight Rises. Be warned; there are plenty of spoilers ahead.

The movie starts roughly eight years after The Dark Knight. Batman is still a wanted fugitive after accepting responsibility for Harvey Dent’s death, and Bruce Wayne hasn’t been seen since. The debut of a new terrorist/mercenary force lead by a new villain named Bane causes Bruce to take up the mantle of Batman for one last ride.

The result was a story that combined elements of the Knightfall, Cataclysm and No Man’s Land storylines, with Batman having to recover from a crippling defeat at the hands of Bane only to save Gotham City from certain doom after it has been cut off from the rest of civilization.

That said, I think I enjoyed this film the most. I liked how intertwined all of the characters were and pretty much everyone knew that Bruce Wayne and Batman were one and the same. At the key of this film was the complex relationships all of the characters had with each other and issues of trust. Sometimes Bruce’s trust was violated (in the case of Bruce and Miranda Tate, who turned out to be none other than Ra’s Al Ghul’s daughter Tate and was seeking to avenger her father’s death from back in Batman Begins); other times it was earned (as was the case with Batman and Catwoman).

The other theme in The Dark Knight Rises is moving on. Alfred urged to Bruce that someday he would have to give up being Batman and have a chance to have a normal life. Bruce somehow manages to do that at the end of the film; saving the city and seemingly dying in an explosion. It’s a fitting end for the Batman persona, as he not only saves the city he so dearly cares about but finally sees the impact that he had on its citizens, as they openly mourned the loss of their dark protector. This allows him to resurface in Europe with Catwoman, who was also searching for a chance to start over, and start a normal life.

Although this is the end of the film series, they leave an opening for a new Batman to guard the city. Detective Blake (played by Joseph Gordon-Levitt) knew that Batman and Bruce Wayne were one in the same, and did everything in his power to help the vigilante come back to save the city from Bane. At the end of the film, he gets given access to Batman’s arsenal of crime fighting equipment.

There’s a whole bunch more I can talk about on this film but I need some time to digest. So what did you think about this?

Man of Steel Movie Poster And Thoughts On New Superman Movie

Big Blue is back!

San Diego Comic Con attendees were able to pick up a poster to promote Zack Snyder’s Superman movie reboot Man of Steel last week. Not only that, but Snyder announced that there was going to be a teaser trailer attached to The Dark Knight Rises.

Color me excited.

Superman’s last big screen adventure was in 2006′s Superman Returns, which was a frustrating affair. I do give credit for director Bryan Singer trying to tie it in with the previous films. The result was unfortunate; the film was glacially paced (no pun intended, even though much of the film took place in the Fortress of Solitude).

Snyder’s over-the-top style will make for a make for a fun film. You can follow the production over at http://www.manofsteel.com. Man of Steel hit the big screen on June 14, 2013.

Check Out The Latest The Dark Knight Rises Trailer

Electronics company Nokia of all places posted this new trailer for The Dark Knight Rises. Christopher Nolan’s final Batman film looks epic. I really like how it doesn’t look like a typical super hero or comic book movie. But there is one thing that doesn’t make me happy.

Bane’s mask looks ridiculous. I have a bad feeling that when I see the movie that my hatred for it is going to distract me the whole time. They better explain why it is so cheasy looking.

Anyway, the movie comes out on July 20. You can all celebrate my birthday by going out and seeing it.

Why You Should Care About Iron Patriot In Iron Man 3?

Comingsoon.net posted this picture from Iron Man 3 of a red, white and blue Iron Man armored person who has to be Iron Patriot. So what does this mean?

For those of you who aren’t up on their comics, Iron Patriot is an Iron Man armor set up that Norman Osborn (you know, the Green Goblin) had convinced the world that he wasn’t a criminal and masquerading around with his own team of Avengers.

Unfortunately, Norman can’t appear in the Iron Man films, since Sony has them as part of the deal that allows the company to make Spider-Man films. They could be creating a new character to stand in for Norman, building something based on the Dark Reign/Siege storyline, leading to a blockbuster Avengers sequel down the road pitting the Avengers against Norman’s crew.

Or it could just be an easter egg; a nod to the comics. We find out on May 13 when Iron Man 3 hits theaters.

Avengers: Earth’s Mightiest Movie Review

I finally got to see Avengers and I was completely blown away. I can’t remember the last time I saw a movie like this and was so happy leaving the film. So why was I so impressed with the film?

The film’s director/scriptwriter Joss Whedon did an incredible job tying together five films worth of plot lines and characterizations. The end result is one of the best super hero/comic book adaptation films ever.

The plot is very straight forward; Loki has returned to Earth, allying himself with the alien army the Chitauri in an attempt for him to rule the planet and giving the aliens the Tesseract (cosmic cube) for their help. SHIELD commander Nick Fury has to pull together the best super heroes alongside the top SHIELD agents to stop this. Along the way, Iron Man and company learn that they have to coexist. Can they save the day? Spoilers after the jump…

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Ghost Rider: Spirit of Vengeance

Crank masterminds Mark Neveldine and Brian Taylor had their chance to reboot the Ghost Rider franchise with Ghost Rider: Spirit of Vengeance. To no surprise, the film was in the style of Crank, and it was a fun mess.

The story this time is around. Nicolas Cage–I mean Johnny Blaze is hiding out in Eastern Europe, because that is where you would go if you were possessed by a vengeful spirit. Cold weather, great food, nice people…

Anyway, Blaze encounters wino/biker/monk Moreau (Idris Elba) who offers to remove the Ghost Rider curse in exchange for protecting a child who just happens to be the son of the Devil. Apparently the evil lord of the underworld wants to transfer himself into the boy’s body and thus becoming the Anti-Christ, bringing on the apocalypse. Things get weird along the way, as there is a Blaze/son of the devil/his hot mom Nadya relationship, kind of like the Arnold Terminator/Connors relationship in Terminator 2: Judgement Day. To make things worse, they’re all being chased by the Devil worshiper’s army of mercenaries and Nadya’s ex-boyfriend, who has been turned into the supernatural decaying super villain Blackout. And you thought you were having a bad day.

The movie is shot across Romania and Turkey, and visually its awesome. It looks really remote in foreign. The special effects were awesome. Idris Elba was amazing, and the rest of the cast was decent. But the film could have been better.

I liked what Neveldine and Taylor were doing stylistically, with all the weird cut scenes. But what they really needed to do was go completely insane full tilt. Maybe it was a decision so they could keep the film PG-13, but I would have loved the film to be a little more absurd. Maybe they cut some scenes out of it. Who knows. It would be interesting to see the director’s cut.

Since Ghost Rider passes judgement on people, let me pass a final judgement on this film. I would give it a solid B. The concept made sense, but there were a few parts that could be tightened and tweaked. It’s a fun super hero film that doesn’t take itself seriously.

Let’s Talk About The First Ghost Rider Movie

You know, the first Ghost Rider film really wasn’t that bad. I recently re-watched Nick Cage’s debut as the Spirit of Vengeance. I won’t say that this was a classic, but I was certainly entertained by it. Here are five things I really enjoyed about this film.

  1. Peter Fonda’s Mephisto was taken in a completely different direction than the Marvel comics version. By not making him a big red devil, Fonda made the lord of the underworld a lot more creepy and a subtle character. In line with that, I liked how the rest of the supernatural characters were more human than monster in appearance.
  2. The visual effects were awesome.
  3. Sam Elliott’s Carter Slade (the original Ghost Rider) was a great addition to the story, as it gave Blaze a mentor, something that is at times lacking in the comics.
  4. Cage enjoyed this…a lot. It’s a pretty well-known fact how much the actor loves comic books, and this was his first comic book movie. He lobbied long and hard to get the title role, battling Johnny Depp for the spot. This translated very well for all the  publicity he did for the film. You could tell that he was legitimately excited about the movie in all of his promotional appearances. I know that is part of the job, but you could tell he genuine about it.
  5. It gave us this Jackson Hewitt commercial:

Do I need to say any more?

Captain America: The First Avenger Movie Review..FINALLY!`

This Sunday I finally saw Captain America: The First Avenger. So what did I think?

I really enjoyed the film. It reminded me a lot of The Rocketeer, as both films may have been set in the 1940s but felt modern. This comparison makes a lot of sense, as both films were directed by Joe Johnston. What carried this film was Chris Evans, who made Steve Rogers super likable in the way that Christopher Reeve and Robert Downey Jr. respectively made Superman and Iron Man compelling characters. You really wanted to see Rogers succeed.

This version of Cap really hit home how much he loved America, whether it be him getting denied entrance into the army, or him being upset that he was created to be a super soldier and all he wad doing to help the war effort was being a fundraising mascot. And in the final scene of the movie, as he put aside his own life to make sure that Red Skull’s doom machine wound up crashing into the ocean around Newfoundland then destroying Manhattan.

I really like how they made Captain America show that you can be patriotic and selfless, without having to be an overbearing, flag waiving caricature of the American spirit. I’m sure this will help the movie be a success overseas.

Getting to the casting and characters, I enjoyed everyone else in the film. Hugo Weaving was a very maniacal Red Skull, and I love how they toyed with the big reveal of his disfigured face through the first half of the movie. Sebastian Stan’s Bucky was a great supporting character. Johnston did a good job showing the dynamic change between Steve and Bucky, as at first Bucky was the protector to the weaker Steve, and how that changed thanks to the Super Solier Serum. With Bucky’s off camera death, I wonder if he may return as Winter Soldier in a later film. Hayley Atwell and Tommy Lee Jones were also fun characters.

There was even a nice nod to fans of Timely Comics era Marvel, you can spot an android Human Torch Jim Hammond in the Stark Expo.

Anyway, the movie was fun, and it was a great way to connect-the-dots on how we get to the Avengers film. That hidden clip at the end officially starts my countdown. Check out Andrew over at ComicBookMarks and Todd Lyden who had some interesting opinions on the film.

Captain America: Movie Review


So it’s the time that everyone has been waiting for, time for a review of the Captain America movie. And we’re not talking about the one from the early 1990s.

Surprise!

I still haven’t seen the film yet, but I’m planning on very soon, so just be patient. Until I see the movie (and probably until I get bored with it), we’ll still be talking about all things Captain America.

Cap made his big screen debut way back in 1943, in a 15 part serial from Republic Pictures. It has little, if anything, to do with the comics of the time. Captain America is the secret identity of district attorney Grant Gardner who dons the star-spangled costume one more time in an attempt to stop the villainous Scarab.

The film is what you would expect; it’s a lot like many of the other action/adventure serials of the time. I might even say that its better than the 1990 Cap film, as far as the storytelling aspects are concerned.

One interesting but morbid bit of trivia from this film is that Dick Purcell–who played Captain America–died of what was assumed to be a heartache shortly after the filming of the movie wrapped up.

It looks like this incarnation of Captain America has lapsed into public domain, and you can view it over at Archive.org

The one where we talk about the 1990 Captain America movie

I spent part of my birthday digging through boxes in the basement, to find a working VCR and my copy of the 1990 Captain America film. The things I do for you readers! So how did the first Cap movie hold up?

I first remember seeing it on a tape I borrowed from my local public library, and eventually a couple of times on some random cable networks. Seeing it again reminded me of something…this is a really disjointed film.

It starts out with a re-imagining of the Red Skull, who as a child was abducted by the Italian Fascists and forced into the Super Soldier Program before World War II. The same scientist responsible for that fled to that, and created Captain America (who’s played by JD Salinger’s song Matt Salinger).

Things go on back and forth with Red Skull’s fascist regime being used by the American industrial military complex to take out anyone who is deemed a threat to them, basically anyone with a peaceful national agenda like MLK and JFK. Eventually Cap gets unfrozen in the modern-day and has to save the President from Red Skull’s forces.

So why was the movie so awkward? Well first, it had a really tight budget. That can ruin any film, let alone something that is supposed to be an action/adventure flick.

The other part is that the movie studio didn’t necessarily like the original version of the film. Director Albert Pyum said this about studio 21st Century Film Corporation’s involvement in the project in a recent Las Vegas Weekly interview:

I was disappointed in the version they released, because [the studio] had no interest in the movie I made or the character of Steve Rogers. They wanted it to be strictly a costumed-hero action-fest with no depth or pathos. The movie I made had a melancholy feel to it. There was sadness at its heart for what can happen to our lives when a government steps in and uses individuals for their own questionable purposes. My Captain America was more about the loss and lies these “heroes” experience, similar in a way to what the U.S. government recently did to Pat Tillman and his family.

Well that explains a lot. The film was critically panned; it became a direct-to-video release in the United States and was a limited release abroad. If you find any reviews of this movie, people are quick to pull out their torches and pitchforks.

So was it that bad?

Let’s look at the positives. Salinger did a fine job as Cap in spite of all the drama, which you can read about over here.  The film would have been an awesome made-for-tv movie. It’s become a cult film, because its pretty silly. After watching it, I was perfectly content with the experience. It’s not great by any stretch but its watchable. It was a great way to kill some time and makes me look forward to tomorrow’s release of The First Avenger.

Review Time–Transformers: Dark of the Moon

 

On the morning of July 4, I did my patriotic duty and went to the movies. I saw Transformers: Dark of the Moon. So how did the final part of Michael Bay’s trilogy do?

Well I enjoyed it. It wasn’t a great movie that makes you think. There were no higher themes and messages really, nor did it intend to be. It was just the good robots fighting to save the planet from the bad ones. And there were a whole lot of awesome special effects.

This reminded me a lot of Independence Day, possibly because of its similar holiday marketing and promotion, but as an epic high stakes battle against aliens. The plot was fairly simple, with the Autobots, Sam Witwicky and some US soldiers saving the day from the Decepticons. There were a couple of plot twists, and some p(l)ot holes along the way, but they got the audience where they needed to be. Transformers also had a lot of silliness and jokes along the ride.

This movie was a lot like watching fireworks for two and a half hours. At the point when you started to get bored, they turned up the explosion factor to 11. If you like seeing stuff blow up, then this is your movie. If not, then sorry you had to see it.

So this is what I liked about the film:

  • Ken Jeong was hysterical for his brief role as Sam’s (Shia Labeouf) conspiracy obsessed coworker.
  • Laserbeak was an awesome villain in the film, serving as the Decepticon’s stealth assassin.
  • They did a really good job in distinguishing the color difference between the robots during fight scenes, which helped make things more sensible.
  • How they tied the Chernobyl disaster into the Transformers history, with the reactor being built by incorporating Cybertronian technology incorrectly.
  • Peter Cullen made Optimus Prime into a super bad-ass, who was ready to go all Punisher on the Decepticons and Sentinel Prime for their teachery and willingness to destroy mankind.

And what I didn’t like:

  • Rosie Huntington-Whitely was really flat as an actor, but she was no different than Megan Fox in the last two films.
  • The jarring switch in tone of the film…one minute its “OMG! LOL” and then the next minute it’s “OMG! :( OMG :*(“
  • There were a bunch of new Autobots introduced in the film and they really didn’t get identified or explained to well.

So in a nutshell, I had fun and it looked good in 3D. I’m not going to rank it in compared to the rest of the comic/super hero films this summer until Captain America comes out.

Basically, it was entertaining if you like loud action films and Transformers. It’s a great way to kill some time.

Green Lantern: After

So about this Green Lantern movie….

Last night (or should I say early this morning) I went and saw it. The movie was pretty much how I expected it to be…not great, but no terrible.

It was average. Out of this summer’s super hero films, Thor is still the best, but this is a strong second, tied with X-Men: First Class.

What I liked:

Ryan Reynolds did a decent job as Hal Jordan. Hal was a smart ass, which worked well for Reynolds, especially when you consider the roles he usually plays. They hit home the fact that although he is a bit of a screw up, his heart is in the right place.

The special effects (especially the 3D heavy scenes) were amazing on the big screen. The aliens and energy constructs are visually stunning. I can see why the film was so expensive, reportedly costing in the ballpark of $300 million.

Speaking of visuals, Parallax wasn’t a bug but more of a giant evil amoeba type thing. The revision of him being a former Guardian (who was corrupted by trying to absorbing the power of fear from the yellow power battery) that went rogue made much more sense.

They also did a good job of tying Hal in with Carol Ferris and Hector Hammond, with the three of them having been childhood friends (how convenient!) due to their family’s involvement with military aviation. Hector was jealous of Hal being popular, being involved with Carol, and that his father liked Hal. When Hector gets infected by Parallax, it only made sense that he went after Hal.

Amanda Waller! It was great to see that a minor character in the DCU was given a fair amount of screen time. Angela Bassett played the underground government operative who was responsible for the secret alien research facility. I wonder if she is going to play a role in the DC films like how Nick Fury and Agent Coulson have been tying the Avengers films together.

What I didn’t like:

The movie felt like it had scenes missing. Early on, Hal goes to his nephew’s birthday where they introduce his family briefly, but it really doesn’t do much to advance the plot. The Hal/Carol relationship was never explored. By the end of the film, it wasn’t clear if they were dating or just friends (another Reynolds reference!) Hal’s Green Lantern combat training was brief, making you wonder how he was able to defeat Parallax, the biggest threat the Green Lanterns ever faced. It makes me wonder if scenes were cut from the theatrical version, like what happened to Daredevil. The extended version of that film is significantly better, and I wonder if Green Lantern has suffered from bad editing.

Hal’s Green Lantern uniform looked ridiculous on screen, with the sinewy-Photoshopped look. And the mask…well, even they made jokes about how lame it was during the film.

The most offensive part of the film to me was the lack of acknowledging the creators of Green Lantern. No mention of Martin Nodell and Bill Finger, who started the whole shebang with Alan Scott. The same goes for John Broom and Gil Kane, who created Hal Jordan, the lead character of the movie, as well as many of the concepts of the movie (Sinestro, the Guardians, TOMAR RE!)

This movie felt a lot like Star Wars, with the whole struggle between will and fear seeming to rehash a lot of the Force and dark side themes. The Guardians’ citadel really reminded me of the Jedi council scenes in Phantom Menace and Revenge of the Sith, down to Hal pulling an Anakin and saying that they need to follow his plans.

So as I was getting ready to leave the theater, content with the film I saw. What it lacked in story, it made up for in visuals. My brother reminded me that there is a bonus scene during the credits. Then I saw something that made me shake my head in anger.

At one point in the film, Sinestro suggested creating a yellow fear-powered ring to user against Parallax. In this bonus clip, it has Sinestro replacing his green ring with a yellow one, with his costume transforming in to the yellow/black one from the recent comics. The switch from Sinestro from green to yellow made no sense.

In the comics, Sinestro’s turn came from a hatred/jealousy of Hal. This film addressed that, as Sinestro was not keen on him joining the corps and disagreed with his plan to handle the Parallax situation. But at the end of the film, you would assume that Sinestro had grown to respect Hal.

Not only did he save Hal at the end of the film, but Sinestro praised him in front of the whole corps. If they were buddy-buddy by the end, why would he do something like that?

WHY?

And in an unintentional bit of comedy, Bleeding Cool reported that the brief slide at the end of the film that directed the audience to pick up Green Lantern comics at your local comics shop, they had the wrong web address. Hearing about this gave me a slight chuckle, but I can empathize with them, since I’ve made that mistake before.

Should you see it?

Well, the film was not as bad as it could have been. It certainly could have been better. It’s a decent enough film to warrant going out to the theater, so I’ll say yes.

Hopefully, if there’s a sequel it will be better.