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Everything wrong with Star Trek

Posted May 9, 2013 into Movies by John Birmingham

The first reboot. No the latest one. Which we'll probably see here before Rhino gets a chance.

25 Responses to ‘Everything wrong with Star Trek’

yankeedog swirls their brandy and claims...

Posted May 9, 2013

It was still a good enough romp. Yeah, it had plot holes one could pilot the Death Star through, let alone the Enterprise. Lose the 'brewery' engine room and I'm good with most of the rest of it.

Actually, one 'sin' isn't a sin, really. As most of us know, when coming on board a ship, it is practice in most navies to say 'Permission to come aboard', even though, yes, the person is technically 'on board' at that point.

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Dan would have you know...

Posted May 9, 2013

Just saw it.

I'm a firm believer in just letting go when walking into a cinema. I did just that and very much enjoyed the show. Plot holes - who cares? Entertainment - by the bucket. If you want to get all thinky(tm)* I don't believe pulp fictional scifi is the place to do it.

My opinion - a great reboot, with nods to the past but looking forward to a new future.

Go enjoy and as they say... stay calm and trek on!

* I gives a trademark where it's due Birmo

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tqft mumbles...

Posted May 9, 2013

As Dan said "nods to the past". Great ride. Much fun.

I am sure there is an army massing to rip it apart. Glad I saw it before that.

Dick swirls their brandy and claims...

Posted May 9, 2013

Not exactly ripping it apart, but hardly flattering.

Barnesm asserts...

Posted May 9, 2013

I don't think the reviewer has a long history with Star Trek, unless his coment 'is a steady pair of hands' is a coded reference to something I saw in the trailer which any fan of Star Trek will be moved to see.

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Lobes mutters...

Posted May 9, 2013

I'm going to see it tonight.

Yous can all wait outside with Rhino and the riff raff

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Therbs reckons...

Posted May 9, 2013

There's just as many things wrong with the vid which shows everything wrong with Star Trek. The major one is that the boring hobbit nerds who made the vid are the very model of 15 y.o. basement dwellers with an oversupply of wanksocks. Ahem, its a science fiction fillum. Suspend disbelief.

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Barnesm ducks in to say...

Posted May 9, 2013

The_weapon and I are booked into IMAX 3D this sunday for the double feature Star Trek and Star Trek into Darkness. Already washed the long sleeved reshirt and black pants in rediness. (REDiness, see what I did there, thats why this blog didn't win).

I think a more interesting discussion is around the question is it Star Trek rather than just a good solid summer blockbuster?

tqft asserts...

Posted May 9, 2013

I would answer that, but too many spoilers.

Mind you not that many at Sunnybank Hoyts this morning had the row almost too myself. But not a big theatre anyway and at 10.15am on a weekday.

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beeso asserts...

Posted May 9, 2013

They forgot to mention it is one of the most boring action movies of all time.

w from brisbane ducks in to say...

Posted May 9, 2013

Oh Beeso!
Set phasers to shut the fk up, you big meanie.
You can stick with your favourites, Catwoman and Highlander 2.
We choose instead to go where no man has gone before and straddle the universe in our snug action wear.

Brian reckons...

Posted May 9, 2013

W. You know our Beeso only too well. probably got them on videotape.

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MickH asserts...

Posted May 9, 2013

I loved the new Sat Trek.

But that was funny as hell and spot on.

(you should see what he does to Prometheus!)

MickH puts forth...

Posted May 9, 2013

Hmmm Sat Trek? I can't work out the Friedien slip

Of course thats supposed to be Star Trek (if we had a spell checker, that wouldn't have happened and I would probably spell Friedian right)

:D

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beeso swirls their brandy and claims...

Posted May 9, 2013

Never seen cat woman. But a shite as Highlander 2 is it still has Sean Connery, which is more interesting than the whole of Lens Flare One.

w from brisbane puts forth...

Posted May 9, 2013

Oh well, I also quite liked 'Battlefield Earth', so I am not one who can judge.

MickH would have you know...

Posted May 10, 2013

I quite liked the book. I've been warned off the movie though. You should read the book

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Blarkon has opinions thus...

Posted May 10, 2013

I'm a trekkie and while I enjoyed the movie, I did have to stop myself thinking "holy plot hole" fairly frequently during this one. There is suspension of disbelief and then there is bashing it over the head, pissing on it, and burying it under several tons of concrete.

The more I pull on the different threads in my mind, the more I wonder 'what the fuck were they thinking'.

I'd like to have a spoilery discussion about this - but I think my last spoilery post might have been sinbinned for being too spoilery.

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Brad reckons...

Posted May 11, 2013

The kill blades were awesome—they had to have a shout-out to Galaxy Quest; and compared to the whole red matter shtick, everything else in the movie is completely plausible.

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drej asserts...

Posted May 11, 2013

I'd second Blarkons call. Thought the new one was really good, biggest problem, wouldn't be Trek without a few plotholes. Biggest issue I have (carried over from the first) is the whole trans-warp transporter idea. Kind of does away with the need for starships...

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TheWah asserts...

Posted May 12, 2013

I also enjoyed the new movie. I only had one gripe... If you are floating at a deadstop next to the Moon you can't be falling towards the Earth seconds later caught in its gravity. The two bodies are a very very long distance apart.

I was actually impressed when Mr Sulu announced they were 380000 km from Earth and there was the Moon off the starboard bow. They got the distance right! In a movie! Miracles! Unlike Prometheus where Charlize Theron intones the alien planet they are standing on is half a billion miles from Earth. Really? Half a billion miles is just past Jupiter.

These things are easily checked and do matter... well they matter to me, dammit.

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Rhino ducks in to say...

Posted May 12, 2013

::Ahem::

We have to leave something for the rabble to get first so that it makes you feel all important and distracts you from revisiting the purchases of F35's.

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Brian reckons...

Posted May 12, 2013

Saw it last night. Not giving anything away here . . .we've seen the promo's. The thought at the end for me was, 'So this is what a seriously pissed off Sherlock looks like'. Exploring that theme alone would be fascinating. IIRC Sherlock did say he was a sociopath in the first episode. Are all world class villains sociopaths?

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damian has opinions thus...

Posted May 15, 2013

This is probably the right thread to post this for reference and stuff...

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Meme of the moment, 'splodey White House

Posted May 6, 2013 into Movies by John Birmingham

I suppose if we have anything for which to thank the Tea Party and Fox News, it's for amplifying the very particular anxieties which made Hollywood think that this was the summer to make some stupidly 'splodey actions movies set in the White House. I was intrigued enough by the posters for Olympus Has Fallen to check out the trailer on YouTube, but not enough to find time in my day to go check it out on the big screen.

There's even less chance I'd part with twelve hard earned dollars to watch the abysmal dog's breakfast of generic derp and cheeze whizz that constitutes White House Down.

I will, however, watch both, at home almost certainly drunk, one night while Jane is away for work in June. Until then I'm wondering how two studios came to the conclusion that dropping a hundred million or so on these turkeys was a good bet. I sort of understand the reasoning behind WHD. They've simply repackaged the best ideas of much better films like Die Hard and Air Force One, with more cgi and less acting.

Olympus, on the other hand, seems to be a movie made especially for middle aged white men feeling the ebb of their power and wishing they could be just a little bit as awesome as they once imagined themselves to be.

But none of this explains why the producers and writers chose the setting and story arcs they did. What is it about American political culture and, presumably it's failures, that has given rise to the anxieties being 'released' by a couple of hours of gunfire in the West Wing? I'm too far removed to really understand it, because I suspect some of it is embedded within America's culture of violence, a culture turned more in on itself than out on the world, inspite what the rest of the world might think. But teasing out the appeal to an US audience isn't enough. With overseas markets even more important to Hollywood than the domestic dollar (how are you enjoying seeing Ironman after the rest of us?) what the fuck line of reasoning led them to this. I'm genuinely fascinated.

It puts me in mind of Steven Soderbergh, the Oscar winning director of thinky stuff like Erin Brockovich, and my favorite action movie, Haywire, who spoke recently of sitting in a plane, in bizoid class, next to some guy, white, middle aged, who pulled out his iPad at the start of the flight.

"I’m curious as to what he’s going to watch... and what he’s done is he’s loaded in half a dozen, sort of, “action extravaganzas” and he’s watching each of the action sequences. He’s skipping over all the dialogue and the narrative. So this guy’s flight is just going to be five and a half hours of mayhem. I had this wave of, not panic, it’s not like my heart started fluttering, but I had this sense of “Am I going insane?” or “Is the world going insane?” or both."

31 Responses to ‘Meme of the moment, 'splodey White House’

Brian ducks in to say...

Posted May 6, 2013

Yep. Went and saw it.

Must be the middle age, Australian male syndrome of just wanting someone to shoot the White House up. Otherwise? Leave your critical faculties at home - but good for a no thinky nite out. Got 2 chuckles . . Got my monies worth.

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w from brisbane swirls their brandy and claims...

Posted May 6, 2013

Release dates - They did the same with Iron Man 1, USA was about last. It is very common to have a UK release prior to the U.S. I assume they do it to build anticipation with the media of glittering premieres elsewhere.

I reckon the bloke sitting next to Soderbergh was a bit of a nut, or maybe he is a second unit director.

Murphy mutters...

Posted May 6, 2013

I know a military research guy who does that with the action scenes of movies. However, on those rare instances when he is actually on a plane, he tends to read a book.

So they can't be the same guy. :)

Respects,

Murph

On the Outer Marches

w from brisbane mutters...

Posted May 6, 2013

Military research: He could have been a game designer.

Back to release dates, maybe they also wanted the word to get out that it was better than Iron Man 2.

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Barnesm ducks in to say...

Posted May 6, 2013

I liked the promo for 'Olympus has Fallen' after all it seems to star King Leonidas from 300. Interested to see what the US burgers thought of it. Otherwise have to wait till its on the TV and JB can review it..

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Murphy asserts...

Posted May 6, 2013

Olympus was best viewed by checking your brain at the door, which is what Cindy and I did when we went to see it. I saw the story more as one of the redemption of a Fallen Hero than I did the need to shoot up the White House. However, my suspense of disbelief was shattered multiple times in ways which I could spend time relating but I'm not going to for fear of spoilers.

White House Down came and went near as I can tell without even a whimper.

Per the action scene iPad guy, here is my take on it.

Most folks do not watch movies to see their own lives replayed before them, at least I don't. I guess those folks watch sit-coms. For myself, I watch those scenes because I am trying to pick apart how they work. The other reason is that whether it be the Big Battle of NYC in The Avengers or the cave escape scene in Iron Man, I want to see heroes in action.

Hell, if I wanted dialogue and character study, I'd crack open a novel.

Respects,

Murph

On the Outer Marches

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Nocturnalist mutters...

Posted May 6, 2013

A sub-question on the same lines: it's interesting to look at the role of the President in these flicks, compared to their equivalents fifteen-odd years ago. Back then President Whitmore was the literal war leader who gave the speech, issued executive orders and then climbed into a cockpit to lead the assault on the alien mothership personally. President HarrisonFordGuyDunnoTheName in Air Force One not only told the terrorists to get off his plane, he beat them up and threw them off it personally (apparently, I didn't see that one).

These days, the day-saving is all about the Services guy (armed or Secret) and the President seems to be a prop to be dragged about, if not actual comic relief, dropping rocket launchers and whatnot.

Is that part of the Rorschach blot too, or am I overthinking a couple of underthought YouTube trailers?

John Birmingham has opinions thus...

Posted May 6, 2013

No, I did think back to Independence Day when writing this entry, and once I've wasted a couple dollars and the better part of a six pack catching up with these ones I'll probably have some thoughts on that.

I was surprised to see Jamie Foxx doing this after Django. He seems to be playing Obama as Doofus in Chief. But then the actor is not the character.

Nocturnalist reckons...

Posted May 6, 2013

My thought is that at the time of the last couple of flicks there was still a lot of positive mythologising about Presidents, to the point where it was a natural fit to make a two-fisted Commander In Chief the hero that Murph talks about wanting to see in action.

Since then there has been a hell of a lot of work put into reversing that whole perception - no matter which side of politics you're on in the US, you've got a recent President you can declare to be a disgrace to the office. A logical end point to all that cultural rewiring would be that it's not possible to present an actual heroic President any more.

That's an outsider's perspective, of course, so I'll be interested to hear Stateside burgers chime in with an insider's one.

It's an interesting exercise trying to work out who you'd use as a protagonist in an Australian action flick - a number of possibilities spring to mind but none as an instant unthinking default.

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ShaneAlpha would have you know...

Posted May 6, 2013

Seriosusly, can any Oz resident imagine a heroic action flic where parliment house gets all shot up, and we actually gave a crap?

John Birmingham reckons...

Posted May 6, 2013

Mmm... No.

w from brisbane swirls their brandy and claims...

Posted May 6, 2013

That made me think: what stories does Australia have about a cultural icon under threat that has resonated with the public at large?

All I can come up with is, "Pub with no beer"

Mothy puts forth...

Posted May 9, 2013

Parliament getting blown up? Not a heroic action flic, more a "Shaun of the Dead" style continuation of the same existence despite obvious signs of something going wrong in the background (i.e. smoke, a distinct lack of politicians on the news).

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Lulu has opinions thus...

Posted May 6, 2013

The Castle, if you consider home ownership to eb a cultural icon - which I suppose it is, in an abstract sense.

MIght have been interesting to see Michael Caton defending the poolroom with a flamethrower and grenades.

w from brisbane would have you know...

Posted May 6, 2013

Yep, the Castle. Good one. Definitely a cultural icon under threat. That was the heart of the film

Nocturnalist mumbles...

Posted May 6, 2013

Yeah, I'd pay that. The cultural icon being "the little battler" as a character/archetype rather than a physical thing.

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Anthony swirls their brandy and claims...

Posted May 6, 2013

I can't think of any of our curent crop of pollies who could manage to be an action hero, although a friend who used to work with Penny Wong tells me she's pretty scary when she gets riled.

Nocturnalist mumbles...

Posted May 6, 2013

This is why we need Gareth Evans back. He could take out the bad guys by going all Bullseye and throwing staplers at them.

(I did notice that the night that Four Corners aired with Bob Carr saying there was a dent in the wall of the Premier's office from when he got so pissed off with Eddie Obeid that he threw a paperweight or something at him, there was a tweet from Fake Penny Wong saying "No dents in the walls of my office. I don't miss my targets.")

TheWah mumbles...

Posted May 8, 2013

I always a vibe from Kevin Rudd, I don't know why. But I can see him him waiting for the armed enemy to look away and then stab him in the neck with a letter opener he scooped up from the desk... and then watch the dying guy in the eyes until he croaks.

I don't know if this says more about Kevin Rudd or about me

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beeso puts forth...

Posted May 6, 2013

?I've been crawling back through a few older action movies, Lethal Weapon last weekend and its amazing how much better the dialogue and pacing is.

Michael fucking Bay has a lot to answer for.

tqft ducks in to say...

Posted May 8, 2013

Michael Bay

http://io9.com/will-adam-baldwin-steal-michael-bays-post-apocalyptic-494240859

"The Last Ship was originally a novel by William Brinkley about a single vessel surviving after a nuclear apocalypse — but io9 was the first site to report that Michael Bay's version was ditching pretty much the entire premise of the book, and replacing it with a "deadly virus apocalypse" storyline instea"

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yankeedog mumbles...

Posted May 6, 2013

Instead of ''splodey White House'-maybe a remake of this. A very good movie in 1964, and a great novel. 'Seven Days In May'.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yfA3TdLoOIk

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HAVOCK21 mutters...

Posted May 6, 2013

5 hours of Chaos and mayhem and sheeeeeeer FKN HAVOCK!!!!!!!!!!!! yeah, wahts NOT to fkn love about that and ffsakes, its got a C!#) SPOOKY in it, go the fkn gunship!....BRING THE RAIN!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! YEAH BABY!!

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Bunyip mumbles...

Posted May 7, 2013

Yankee Dog, just noticed the original screen play was by one Rod Serling.

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yankeedog puts forth...

Posted May 7, 2013

Yep, Bunyip. I think about everything Rod Serling had a hand in was good quality watching.

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Dino not to be confused with mutters...

Posted May 7, 2013

JB,

Haven't watched them but have thought about it.

American Dream vs Empire failing.

The notion of the common man(person) saving the Union.

Oh and we hired Haywire last night and thanks for the heads up.

Great movie 'cept I fell asleep(I was fking tired man) and will finish watching it now.

More/better comment tomorrow.

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Mark Hayes is gonna tell you...

Posted May 8, 2013

Sounds like a re-boot of two movies from the Regan era - Red Dawn (1984), recently re-made with North Koreans replacing Cubans and Nicuagarans as the bad guys, and Invasion USA (1985), starring the always wonderful Chuck Norris. Both movies were oozing the then necessary ideologies, brain candy for conspiracy theorists, and suitably violent. Good for laughs if you're into this kind of thing but some people mistook them for documentaries. Same seems to be the case with the two flicks under consideration here. Sure; they're movies, but with Obama in the White House trying to take our guns off us and doing nothing to whack those Commie Slopes in Korea who could nuke LA or Vegas... You follow the thoughts... :( I'll watch them on DVD eventually, for laughs...

Mothy mumbles...

Posted May 9, 2013

My wife saw the preview for the Red Dawn reboot and was highly offended on behalf of John Marsden and the "Tomorrow When the War Began" franchise. I had to quietly explain about the Cubans having well and truly covered that ground before him.

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Mothy asserts...

Posted May 8, 2013

18 year old (fem) boarder in my house went, alone, to movies and watched Olympus Has Fallen.

Now, my wife and I have a tempremental 2 year old and an 8 month old in the house, so escapism and spending time out of the house I can understand.

But on expressing my incredulity at the choice of movie on her return, she gave two defences:

1 - I've seen everything else. Fair Enough.

2 - "It was about North Korea attacking the White House. It could happen you know." Not a hint of irony. I checked.

Excuse me while I go walk into the ocean.

John Birmingham is gonna tell you...

Posted May 8, 2013

Wow. Just wow.

Bunyip puts forth...

Posted May 8, 2013

Hey, you can scoff, but remember a crazy Dutchman set light to the Reichstag. Oh, wait... never mind.

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The completely disappointing I, Ron Man 2

Posted May 3, 2013 into Movies by John Birmingham

Lobes was wr... wro.... wr... less right than usual when he said I, Ron Man 3 wasn't a patch on '2'.

Here is proof.

From the internet.

The. Internet.

7 Responses to ‘The completely disappointing I, Ron Man 2’

Barnesm would have you know...

Posted May 3, 2013

praise the internet. Though I prefered everything wrong with iron man 2 in six minutes click here

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Darth Greybeard ducks in to say...

Posted May 3, 2013

Bah. Just made me want to watch it again. Obviously slept through some bits.

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drej ducks in to say...

Posted May 3, 2013

That was pretty good. Accurate too.

I thought Lobes said IM1 was the better film, not 2.

Its a shame they can't come up with better villains/showdowns for the franchise than just more and/or bigger versions of IM himself. So many better villains to choose from in the Marvel 'verse...

Lobes asserts...

Posted May 4, 2013

Been loading it for an hour but I still cant watch the youtube because, I dunno, bandwidth or some shit. But Drej is right, I didnt comment on Ironman 2, just IM1 and IM3.

But to elaborate I will now rank all the Ironman movies in a hierarchy of awesome.

Ironman 1

Avengers

Ironman 3

Ironman 2

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w from brisbane puts forth...

Posted May 3, 2013

For me, the best comic book movie by a fair distance in recent times was Hellboy 2.

The first Helboy was OK.
Hellboy 2 is very good. Written and directed by Guillarmo del Toro.

w from brisbane has opinions thus...

Posted May 3, 2013

* Guillermo del Toro

pi is gonna tell you...

Posted May 6, 2013

Really? I didn't like that at all. Well... not 'at all', but i found it difficult to engage. I ended up putting it on foxtel one night and realized I'd watched the movie before, and that hardly ever happens to me.

Best comic-book ever? hmmm... X-Men - First Class was pretty bloody good. And it has to be said, the newest incarnation of Dredd was teh awsum. And Sin City? Jeepers... how do you write off that one?

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I Ron Man

Posted May 3, 2013 into Movies by John Birmingham

I recall a drunken conversation with a friend from university, Dave Waddington, who was wetting himself with glee and too much cider, at a terrible late night movie he'd seen late the previous night, many, many moons ago.

It had the words Iron and Man in the title but because of poor scanning, when reduced from wide screen to teev screen, it had rendered as 'Ron Man'.

Dave found this vastly amusing.

I've never been able to find the B- or possibly C-grade flick which amused him so much. It appears nowhere on IMDB. Maybe it was some Italian-Japanese co-pro? It's been bugging me all week after having watched and enjoyed the most recent of the Marvel comix franchise movies on the weekend. (I enjoyed it even more when I heard it hadn't even been released in the US. Oh, how the mighty hegemon has fallen.)

Anyway, it's US release is imminent, and the terrible page view churn of pop cultural analysis is beginning. Esquire has a bit that I won't link to and wont recommend googling or binging up because it sports some terrible spoilers, but it caught my eye cos it investigated the deeper cultural psychology of the third iteration of the Ron Man series.

I am sucker for the deeper cultural psychology of mass market genre product.

Apparently its all about the luddite anxiety.

With the release of Iron Man 3 this Friday, summer movies begin arriving in earnest, which is the time the spiritual state of the American public is revealed. During the rest of the year, even the most mainstream Hollywood movies are made for niches. But summer movies are made for everybody. They have to be, to compete in the race to 350 million domestic. Their broadness makes summer movies incredibly useful as guides to the psychology of the American public. And if this year's crop of blockbusters is anything to go by, the American public is both obsessed with technology and absolutely terrified of it. They want to see supercool machines do incredible things and then blow up and go away.

This I found to be a startling hypothesis, and one which I really didn't take away from my viewing. Esky tied it in to a couple of other titles, but poorly. What is Pacific Rim, for instance, if not the triumph of machine over monster? And Star Trek Into Darkness hasn't even been released yet, so it's a bit of stretch to be citing it in support of your unsupportable thesis when nobody's seen the fucking thing yet.

I don't want to get into the end of I, Ron Man 3 because, you know, spoilers. But I fully epxect him to be there, kicking alien ass in the next of The Avengers installments.

Any US Burgers who haven't... snigger... seen it yet... go wild. And if you get the chance, check out the Chinese release. It has an extra four minutes of footage which make absolutely no fucking sense at all. New characters who have no thing to do with the storlyine but who throw out some great lines like, "Please let China help you, Ron Man."

You won't be disappointed.

19 Responses to ‘I Ron Man’

DrYobbo asserts...

Posted May 3, 2013

Maybe it was Irian Man, the story of early Australopithicines found in west Papua.

...

...

Shoulda known geography/evolution mashup jokes were wasted on you philistines

Dave W has opinions thus...

Posted May 3, 2013

Irony man was a great hipster flick, I thought. Pop culture v pop culture mash-up?

Brian mumbles...

Posted May 3, 2013

No, no got that. But we're talking about movies and not sharing with our US friends. Peking Man seems appropriate.

BWS swirls their brandy and claims...

Posted May 3, 2013

* Reads Dr Yobbo's first sentence *

* Tumbleweeds *

* Reads Dr Yobbo's second sentence *

Yes, you should have.

Murphy has opinions thus...

Posted May 3, 2013

Is cool, Doc. I got it.

I feel ya.

Respects,

Murph

On the Outer Marches

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Paul_Nicholas_Boylan is gonna tell you...

Posted May 3, 2013

I deeply resent the fact that y'all can see it and I have to wait another day. "America" used to stand for something.

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w from brisbane reckons...

Posted May 3, 2013

It could have been the 1931 film, IRON MAN, starring the wonderful Jean Harlow, the versatile Robert Montgomery, and a young Lew Ayres. Some of you older fans might remember Lew Ayres from his later starring role in the nine Dr Kildare movies.

This interesting film, which has nothing to do with a silly man in metal pyjamas, is another rather harsh Hollywood presentation of the world of professional boxing.

If you wish to enjoy a clip from the film, you could click on this link.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=V_cfPIequIk

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skink1984 ducks in to say...

Posted May 3, 2013

I thought Australia had its very own Iron Man?

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pi reckons...

Posted May 3, 2013

Terrible thing that happened to that actor that played iron man.

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0277941/

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BigWillieStyle reckons...

Posted May 3, 2013

Could be an anagram. "No Marin", the true story of Tommy Chong striving to make it in Hollywood on his own. Or "Roma Inn", a road movie set in western Queensland.

BigWillieStyle swirls their brandy and claims...

Posted May 3, 2013

Or "Rain Mon", the heartwarming story of a Jamaican savant with a head for numbers.

insomniac mumbles...

Posted May 3, 2013

"Rain Mon" is brilliant.

15 and a half stars out of 17

Lulu asserts...

Posted May 3, 2013

I'm PMSL at Rain Mon.

Brother PorkChop ducks in to say...

Posted May 3, 2013

I think I saw it advertised on the interwebz thingy - I, Ron Jeremy, Man. Something about getting a bigger tadger. Dunno, could that be it?

insomniac ducks in to say...

Posted May 3, 2013

how about "Mr Anion", who seems like an ideal candidate for an archenemy, but as its cations that cause iron to rust he'd have to be some sort of nerdy sidekick protecting Iron Man, unless there is one of those already, which I wouldn't know because I haven't seen any of the movies because I have, you know, a life.

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Bunyip ducks in to say...

Posted May 3, 2013

You're not confusing it with Ironning Man, the tale of the adventures of a stay-at-home dad?

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Lobes swirls their brandy and claims...

Posted May 3, 2013

Saw it the other day. Avengers and Iron Man 1 shit all over it. Worth a torrent but not much else. Robert Downey Jr is now just phoning in the wisecracks with very little depth or spontaneity. The level of action is high but rivals Transformers for its incoherence.

2 stars out of 4.

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tqft reckons...

Posted May 3, 2013

Enjoyed the flick. I can see a visit in a flyover location in a future movie.

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YB swirls their brandy and claims...

Posted May 3, 2013

If you could have done this well a week ago, we coulda been a contender. No, let's bring the lols too late. JB weeps for what might have been.

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The Spoiler Convention

Posted April 23, 2013 into Movies by John Birmingham

I did a little of recce of some of the other finalists in the Best Blog Comp, not because I give a fuck, because I totally don't – see, this is me not giving a fuck – but because I'm always on the lookout for new ways to waste time.

I particularly enjoyed wasting my time at Thomas Caldwell's film crit blog, Cinema Autopsy. Unfortunately it's not a blog purely about films about autopsies. But it's still pretty cool. He had a write up of Warm Bodies, which I read, even though I have an iron law; never read the review first. More of why, later.

But his Warm Bodies review I read because having just finished Walking Dead S3, I find myself hungering for a discussion of zombie tropes like Zombie Principal Skinner hungers for the delicious honor student brains of Martin Prince. Caldwell's writing is clear and informed but unburdened by wank. He knows his mass culture.

The problem with zombies is there is only so much that can be done with them before audiences develop zombie-fatigue, no longer content to simply see how many creative ways zombies can be dismembered; Peter Jackson pretty much pushed that as far as possible in Braindead (1992). Instead, filmmakers in recent times have had to find other novel ideas to present zombie narratives. In [Rec] (2007) Jaume Balagueró and Paco Plaza experimented with film form to present a ‘found footage’ zombie film. Romero did the same, although less successfully, in the same year with Diary of the Dead. In 28 Days Later… (Danny Boyle, 2003) and the television series The Walking Dead (originally developed by Frank Darabont, 2010-ongoing) the zombie presence is secondary to the human drama, their threat serving almost as a McGuffin to allow for an exploration of how humans behave under intense duress.

I dunno that I'd drop the walkers and biters of TWD into the McGuffin box. They're a lot more than that, but the wider point is otherwise reasonable. I didn't so much suffer zombie fatigue by the end of Seaon 3; I still love a good zombie kill, especially as practised by Michone. But the visceral horror the undead first elicited was gone, and now it's all about the tension. Will Andrea get out of the dentists chair in time? Will Hershel be to slow to escape the feed lot in front of the prison?

Caldwell made me want to see Warm Bodies, mostly by referencing Buffy when introducing the film's female lead. But the thing I really, really appreciated about this write up?

It didn't lay out the fucking plot.

I said earlier that I have a rule about reading reviews. I don't. Read 'em that is. Not until I've seen the film for myself. And then more often than not to disagree with the reviewer. Mostly the dumb arse films I love to watch get such poor reviews that I dont want my enjoyment ruined by having to filter the experience through the puckered sphincter of some uptight cinema wankiste.

But mostly I refuse to read reviews because so many of these clowns can't write a review without recounting all the major plot points. Hands up anyone who remembers failing a high school film review assignment for simply recounting the plot?

Havoc, you can keep your hands down. We take your failure as a given.

I have no idea what actually happens in Warm Bodies, beyond the broadest brush strokes of outline, but I do feel like I understand what sort of film I'm likely to see, and that is how it should be.

This all comes from having Unforgiven ruined for me by the rightfully defunct Times on Sunday's film reviewer. I read her review in the days when I still reviews because, you know... Clint! And cowboys!

She gave away the ending of the film in about the third or four paragraph. I dont even want to talk about it on the off chance there's somebody here who has foolishly never seen this movie. If you haven't, leave now. Go away and place this fine piece of cinema into your possession. You are in for a treat.

But my treat was ruined by that review. As great as the story of Unforgiven was, I couldn't enjoy it because I went in knowing what came of the showdown between Eastwood's character and Gene Hackman's hard, brutal lawman. You knew that showdown was coming from moment Hackman walked onto the screen, but Eastwood confirmed it when, in the character of Will Munny he finds out that sheriff Little Bill, like most men, knows him by reputation.

"But that didn't scare Little Bill at all, did it," he says to one of his henchmen. (Or words to that effect.

A perfect set up. Ruined by a hamfisted reviewer.

I have never recovered.

Which is why I appreciated Caldwell's so much.

22 Responses to ‘The Spoiler Convention’

Therbs ducks in to say...

Posted April 23, 2013

Aside from hating the entitled spoilerism so well flaunted by reviewers, a lot of the time I either don't rate their intellect or want to wait to compare notes with them post popcorn munching. Also sometimes I just can't be arsed with bothering to check them out. Laziness can be a virtue.

John Birmingham mumbles...

Posted April 23, 2013

In this case, laziness is totes a virtue

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Barnesm asserts...

Posted April 23, 2013

I am so sorry that Unforgiven was ruined for you for it was certainly a magnificent film, not a movie as I have heard some make the distinction, not me becuase I think its a wanky thing to say, ... what was I saying - yeah Unforgiven fraking fabulous film and the showdown a highlight.

"deserve got nothing to do with it"

Oh and I would suggest you should include in the variation on the zombie films, Shaun of Dead, as the first RomComZom. I am looking forward to Warm Bodies, surprising I know. Especially how he wake up at the end and realises that the kid was only talking to him because he was actually dead, oh and that the aliens can be killed by water.

DrYobbo puts forth...

Posted April 24, 2013

SPOILER ALERT

Seriously, what kind of abject fucking miserablist wankbadger gives away the ending to Unforgiven in a review of Unforgiven??

On par with the review of The Usual Suspects I once read which said 'Kevin Spacey is brilliant in the role of Keyser Soze'... yeah thanks for that arsebag

Barnesm ducks in to say...

Posted April 24, 2013

Can add Enterainment News in the US as waking spoliers when they gave away Cumberbatch's identity in the new Star Trek film on their font cover a few months back.

BigWillieStyle has opinions thus...

Posted April 24, 2013

Yobbo, I recall driving to work one morning years ago listening to Triple J. This was when The Usual Suspects was in the cinemas, and I hadn't yet seen it. Anyhoo, Mikey Robbins is going on about what a great film it is, and Helen Farking Razer suddenly yelps, "Kevin Spacey is Keyser Soze! Kevin Spacey is Keyser Soze!" I've pretty much hated her ever since.

DrYobbo has opinions thus...

Posted April 24, 2013

As good a reason as any.

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Dino not to be confused with puts forth...

Posted April 23, 2013

Unforgiven

Have to watch that one again. Shit is it 20+years? Really?

Reviews should embellish/complement the anticipation and experience.

I loved TWD and will watch Season Three when it arrives at the video shop.

Oh and chickybabes with brains is hot, gonna put ma' teeth in and eat some brains, look out 'purple'.

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NBlob swirls their brandy and claims...

Posted April 23, 2013

The title may have been a hint, but Fck me Birmo, when you drop spoilers they need a pilot vehicle, a cop escort with flashing lights and orange and fcking red flags.

Denist chair. Arse. What's next, they all turn into vampires in a bar?

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w from brisbane asserts...

Posted April 23, 2013

Years ago, during the Brisbane Film Festival, I was at a retrospective showing of Stanley Kubrick's 'Paths of Glory'. I was with some mates who hadn't seen it.

Before the film, for some godawful reason, they got film cineaste John Baxter (I like your alternate description, JB) to introduce the film. As we were sitting in the theatre waiting to view this classic, Baxter (and he was wearing a black skivvy) laid out the plot and gave his interpretation of the film's denouement. Faaaaarrrrkkk!! My mate beside me had his fingers in his ears going 'Mi, mi, mi, mi, mi'. I could hear other theatre goers saying variations of 'Could someone get this fkn clown to shut up!!!' Baxter droned on, oblivious. It was like some ridiculous skit.

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Paul_Nicholas_Boylan asserts...

Posted April 24, 2013

I enjoyed Warm Bodies, and recommend it even though all of it is predicatable, spoilers notwithstanding.

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Lulu ducks in to say...

Posted April 24, 2013

I think the biggest spoiler spoil of the Unforgiven era was The Crying Game. The Unforgiven ending was at least a 50/50 choice between two possible, known outcomes. Crying Game was like being told in advance that an unexpected meteorite will hit you from outer space.

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TC puts forth...

Posted April 24, 2013

So... spoilers. I'm up to about Ep 10 or 11 in TWD, so after avoiding your other blog and not realising I was getting in so deep in this one, I nearly screamed at you for fucking it all up for me. Then I realised that you hadn't. Phew.

I must say, Cinema Autopsy is the only other blog on the honour roll I bothered checking, and I have to agree that it's pretty awesome. I used to enjoy Cinematopia because Jim whatsisface looked at every movie through the lens of who it was created for and judged it with that context in mind. And he didn't spoil any of them them, adding a warning for when he came close, so I knew I could read his reviews prior to seeing the movie (as long as I didn't read the munters adding their inane fucking comments about the final scene underneath). Anyway, that site is dead and buried and I've been looking for a cinema site since. And if anyone says David and Margaret they can go fuck themselves.

Lulu reckons...

Posted April 24, 2013

Jim *might* be writing for the Herald Sun now, but I don't read the Evil Empire's papers so I might be wrong on that.

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Barnesm reckons...

Posted April 24, 2013

I was amused at a screen of the Cameron's 'Titanic' when one of the viewers complained that a review had revealed the ship sank at the end of the movie.

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Barnesm puts forth...

Posted April 24, 2013

I was amused at a screen of the Cameron's 'Titanic' when one of the viewers complained that a review had revealed the ship sank at the end of the movie.

Paul_Nicholas_Boylan has opinions thus...

Posted April 25, 2013

When the first (awful) remake of King Kong screened in Hollywood back in the 1970's, at the end of the film the lobby was filled with people with microphones who wanted statements from people who just saw the film. One approached me and asked me how I liked the movie and I said "This movie had a gorilla in it. I hate movies with gorillas in them." I will always treasure the memory of the look on his face.

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TC is gonna tell you...

Posted April 24, 2013

So... I just went back to Cinema Autopsy hoping for the same kind of spoiler-less but nonetheless thought provoking review that was seen for Warm Bodies.

I read the Iron Man 3 review and now don't need to see it. Plus I now know more about the subtle undertones of the movie than the writer, the director and all the cast members. Might remove CineAut bookmark.

Dino not to be confused with puts forth...

Posted April 24, 2013

Yeah TC,

I read a very different interpretation.

The use of cinema as a mirror.

The current batch is big budget high tech and entertaining.

Multi layered narratives with ROI. Nothing wrong with that in my book.

Better than lots of 60 second long, up close frames in B&W with atonal music in the background but each to his own.

TC mutters...

Posted April 24, 2013

Don't get me wrong, Dino - IM3 sounds fucking awesome, as would be expected after 1 & 2.

***** SPOLIER ALERT *****

And I was exaggerating a bit in my 'subtle undertones' quip, but not about the spoilers. I now know how the whole movie will pan out and I even know that I'll be pissed off at the end because of a big fuck off deus ex machina. That's just goddamn annoying.

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Dino not to be confused with is gonna tell you...

Posted April 24, 2013

TC

Just saw the IM3.

Loved it. As good as IM1 except no akadaca.

Of note everyone looks younger than IM1 etc except the 'therapist'.Of note, brace yourself Burgers, someone in the audience had not seen RC Avengers,I kid you not!

PS: Also the card formulae are interesting. Incorrect but interesting.

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w from brisbane asserts...

Posted April 25, 2013

Re: Plot detail in reviews.
The alternative view is below. i.e. we are writing art criticism and plot detail is relevant and it is intended to be read by people who have seen the film.

That is crap, of course, because, if the review is intended to be read by people who have seen the film, then why is there the push to publish the review before most people have seen the movie?

http://www.film.com/movies/oblivion-spoilers

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Star Trek into Awesomeness

Posted April 18, 2013 into Movies by John Birmingham

Blarkon gave us a shout out, but not a link to this bad boy yesterday. And if the Space Lizard approves. It must be good.

26 Responses to ‘Star Trek into Awesomeness’

Quokka is gonna tell you...

Posted April 18, 2013

Yes, and goody.

Anyone know when it's released here in Oz?

Quokka has opinions thus...

Posted April 19, 2013

thanks, Barnesm.

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Barnesm puts forth...

Posted April 18, 2013

I am off to the IMAX 3d Extravaganza on Sunday 12 May, bought tickets for the weapon and I yesterday. It will include the 2009 Abrams Star Trek followed by Trek into Darkness. So its on at least as soon as May 12 here in Auz maybe earlier (May 12 is before the UK and US are showing it I think).

Of all the speculation of the character being played by Cumberbach...

All I can say about that

They certainly decided to take Harry Mudd in a dark direction for this one.

Darth Greybeard puts forth...

Posted April 18, 2013

The Tribbles are back - and this time they want your BLOOD.

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Murphy is gonna tell you...

Posted April 18, 2013

Man, can not even J.J. Abrams break away from "The U.S.S. Enterprise Versus Big Dumb Object. Round One, FIGHT!" cliche?

Just wondering.

Respects,

Murph

On the Outer Marches

Shifty Tourst has opinions thus...

Posted April 18, 2013

Its a step up from the Enterpise vs Big Dumb Alien Societal Complication days of the original series and Next Gen years.

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John Birmingham puts forth...

Posted April 18, 2013

But if the 'prise won't take on all the big dumb objects, who will?

Well, Murphy? Who will??!!?

Murphy mutters...

Posted April 18, 2013

The Death Star can handle it.

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Barnesm has opinions thus...

Posted April 18, 2013

I smell an Oscar best use of big dumb object.

Murphy reckons...

Posted April 18, 2013

Barnes, if that was the case, any random porno film with a vibrator could win the Oscar.

Respects,

Murph

On the Outer Marches

Barnesm has opinions thus...

Posted April 18, 2013

and are you saying that some p0rno films are less deserving of an Oscar than some film that get them.

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HAVOCK21 swirls their brandy and claims...

Posted April 18, 2013

pretty fkn awesome, watched it last week too, ITS HAVOCKNESS in SPACE!, kicking the shit outta fkn space muppets and hopefully some fkn lizardoe's as well!

OH and WHERE THE FK IS BLUNTY?

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yankeedog asserts...

Posted April 18, 2013

Far better Trek action:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4hnBp7x2QAE

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MarkM mutters...

Posted April 18, 2013

My wife, in her capacity as an entertainment writer, is interviewing JJ, Chris Pine and Karl Urban next week. Then she is going to a sneak preview of the movie.

In the middle of the day.

While I'm at work.

Bitch!

tqft has opinions thus...

Posted April 18, 2013

I am available to take your spot

MarkM swirls their brandy and claims...

Posted April 22, 2013

TQFT - so sorry I didn't see this sooner. Well, kinda sorry...

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TC would have you know...

Posted April 18, 2013

I know I shouldn't say it here, but I was never a big fan of the Trek until JJ Abrams came along and modernised it all (hmm... even I can see the irony there). I really enjoyed the 2009 movie and am looking forward to seeing this. Big Dumb Object and all.

Barnesm reckons...

Posted April 18, 2013

also there has been an effort to tone down the lens flare.

The bridge still looks like and apple store though

John Birmingham asserts...

Posted April 18, 2013

Your point being?

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Blarkon has opinions thus...

Posted April 18, 2013

The thing that the Enterprise is fighting there is another Federation Starship, piloted by Sherlock.

And given that the Apple Store Enterprise is bigger than the 1701-D (according to the specs - I'm not sure I buy the official specs as the scale seems off) - Sherlock's ship may be as big as a Star Destroyer.

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Murphy is gonna tell you...

Posted April 18, 2013

Yeah . . . sorta figured that out on my own, thanks.

I'm going to scream, "BULLSHIT," in the movie theatre if it is called, "Reliant."

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Barnesm mumbles...

Posted April 18, 2013

Current thinking on the geekweb suggests it might be a secret federation battleship, constructed in contravention of the federations peaceful exploration mandate and that Cumberbatch is its captain who stole it. Saying it out loud sounds a bit Hunt for Red October doesn't it?

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dzt! mutters...

Posted April 18, 2013

Oh man, this looks awful!

Barnesm ducks in to say...

Posted April 18, 2013

awfully GREAT.

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Dino not to be confused with ducks in to say...

Posted April 20, 2013

Best awesomeness trailer.

Much better than the first one.

I love that they kept the 'claxson' scream scene.

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