Just forget the words and sing along

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Mission: Impossible 4 Trailer

The trailer for Mission: Impossible -- Ghost Protocol just went online.  I've watched it several times and it made me geek out all over, so of course, I had to share.

"Now Mark," you're probably thinking.  "Why the heck would you geek out over some stupid little Tom Cruise spy movie?"  I'm getting all nuts for this one because of the director...Brad Bird.

You heard me right.  Brad Bird.  The director of the Oscar-winning Pixar films The Incredibles and Ratatouille...the director of my all-time favourite film, The Iron Giant...is making his live action debut with Mission: Impossible 4

Originally, Bird was going to make his live-action debut with the historical epic 1906, about the earthquakes and fires that destroyed San Fransisco in 1906, but the studios deemed it too big and too expensive for a first-time live-action director.  So, he got the job to do the next Mission: Impossible film.

J.J. Abrams, who directed Super 8, the Star Trek reboot, and Mission: Impossible III, is back on board as producer and co-writer.  Abrams wrote the script along with his former Alias writers Andre Nemec and Josh Appelbaum. 

Mission: Impossible -- Ghost Protocol hits theatres December 16.

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Stuff for Tuesday!

So, there's a few things that crossed my mind yesterday that I felt I should, nay, needed to share with the world.

First up, you may remember, back on Thursday, I was geeking out about the all the new information released on Pixar's epic for 2012, Brave.  Well, as expected, when Cars 2 hit theatres on Friday, the first teaser was in front.  And here it is!

As previously mentioned, it hits theatres next June.

Next up, there was a Blu-Ray announcement yesterday that had me geeking out.  Coming out on October 25, just in time for Christmas, for the first time on Blu-Ray, The Jurassic Park Trilogy.

The big boxed set contains all three films (Jurassic Park, The Lost World: Jurassic Park, and Jurassic Park III).  You get ALL of the bonus features from the previous DVDs, and brand new to this set is the all new, 6-part documentary Return to Jurassic Park, which features brand new interviews with the cast and crew, including director Steven Spielberg.  The Blu-Ray set will be available in two versions:  regular, and "box full of swag," which has a little statue of the T-Rex bursting through those legendary "Jurassic Park" front gates.

The only film I have of the trilogy on DVD is Jurassic Park, and I've been thinking about succumbing to the double-dip for quite some time.  When the DVD was first released, it was released in two versions:  the regular Dolby Sound edition, and the DTS edition.  On the DTS edition, in order to make room for the DTS soundtrack, they wound up removing pretty much all of the bonus features.  And then, they discovered an error in the DTS soundtrack, and issued a recall on the disc.

I have the DTS edition, and I didn't notice I had the pre-recall version until it was too late to get my free replacement.

So, yeah.  I think this is one worth the upgrade to Blu.

Man o man, The Lord of the Rings: Extended Editions hit Blu-Ray today, The Superman Anthology came out a month ago, The Star Wars Saga comes out this September, and now this...2011 is turning into one damn expensive year.

And speaking of Star Wars, I caught a little bit of The Phantom Menace on TV last night.  And it got me to thinking about the upcoming Blu-Ray...I wonder if the Blu-Ray will have the "digital Yoda" version of The Phantom Menace?

For those who don't care, when Lucas was making The Phantom Menace, he felt that the computer animation technology wasn't quite there yet to do a fully computer animated Yoda, so most of Yoda's scenes were done the old fashioned way:  with a puppet.  Yeah, they attempted a computer animated Yoda in some long shots, but it's pretty much all puppet Yoda in The Phantom Menace.

When production started on Attack of the Clones, making Yoda completely computer animated was a top priority.  To test out their new animation software, and to get the animators all warmed up for animating Yoda, the computer animators went back into The Phantom Menace, digitally removed puppet Yoda, and replaced it with a completely computer animated digital Yoda.

Obviously, the "digital Yoda" version of The Phantom Menace is George Lucas's preferred version, as whenever someone wants a clip of The Phantom Menace for some Star Wars retrospective, Lucas sends them a clip featuring digital Yoda.  But the entire digital Yoda version of The Phantom Menace has yet to be released.

I exchanged a few text messages with some of the more hardcore Star Wars fans I know, and it's pretty much agreed that when The Phantom Menace hits Blu-Ray, it will most likely be the digital Yoda version.

It makes me wonder what other new "Special Edition" tweaks Lucas will be making for the Blu-Rays....

Saturday, June 25, 2011

McRibbed For Your Pleasure

Well, it's that magical time.  McDonald's has decided to bring back one of their cult following sandwiches for the summer.  Folks, in case the Double Down has been stealing all the limelight, may I take a moment to remind you that the McRib is back?

That's not from my cellphone cam...I brought my real camera down to McDonald's to get a good picture

What is it about this burger-like creation?  What is it that drives people mad for it?

Because I tell you, I have one every time McDonald's brings it back, and one is usually enough.  I mean, we always rally against fast food and how it tastes so plastic and artificial and processed...no fast food creation tastes more plastic and artificial and processed than the McRib. 

For those who've never had the pleasure, the McRib is a pork (or, at the very least, pork-like) patty smothered in BBQ sauce and topped with pickles and onions on a sesame seed roll.

Introduced at McDonald's in 1981, it tested well enough that they added it to the regular menu.  However, sales were always sluggish, and it was removed from the regular menu in 1985.  It's been a seasonal item ever since.  Last time McDonald's had it here in Canada was around three years ago.  Before that...wow, I think it was the tie-in to the live-action Flintstones movie back in 1994. 

The McRib has become a pop culture icon.  Who can forget that classic Simpsons episode where Homer goes across the USA tracking down the "Ribwich."  So what is it about it that makes the McRib so beloved?

The taste sensation that people kill for

I think that, at the end of the day, it's not taste that make people crave the McRib.  It's the marketing.  It's the whole limited time ploy.  Get one now, because it'll be gone next week.  If you don't act on your impulses and get a McRib today, you'll have to repress yourself for the next five years! 

So, yeah.  Get it before it's gone.  Five little words that make me buy a lot more than I really should.

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Pixar Miscellany

You know me, I'm a big Pixar fanboy, which is why I'll probably be heading out to see Cars 2 before the summer is done...even though the trailers look a little too fart-joke-centric.

But, with the forthcoming release of Cars 2, we're getting a whole bevy of Pixar news.

First up, as is Pixar tradition, the first teaser trailer for their next film will be in front of Cars 2.  They're next one is called Brave.  It comes out next summer, and we've also got the first teaser poster.

Brave is Pixar's first stab at doing a fairy tale.  Set in medieval Scotland, it follows the adventures of Princess Merida, an accomplished archer whose young headstrong ways soon brings turmoil to her kingdom, and she has to embark on a quest to set things right.

Brave is also notable in that it'll be Pixar's first film with a female protagonist.  For a time, there, it was also going to be Pixar's first film with a female director, Brenda Chapman.  However, back in the fall, Chapman was removed from the project and replaced with Mark Andrews.  For all her hard work on the film to date, Chapman is still getting a co-director credit.  And, as she conceived the original story, she's also still getting a "written by" credit.

As for the voices, Merida will be voiced by Scottish actress Kelly Macdonald.  Her parents, King Fergus and Queen Elinor, will be voiced by Billy Connolly and Emma Thompson.  Comic relief in the film comes from the three lords of the kingdom, Lord MacGuffin, Lord Macintosh, and Lord Dingwall, to be voiced by Kevin McKidd, Craig Ferguson, and Robbie Coltrane.  Nice to see that Pixar learned the lesson from Finding Nemo and are trying to get real accents instead of people to fake them. 

(There's this bonus feature on the Finding Nemo DVD where they take the fake Australian accents that the animators used in the story reel and compared them to the real Australian accents used by the real Australian actors who voiced the characters in the final film and yeah...the difference is pretty noticable.)

Brave hits theatres on June 22, 2012.

As for the rest of the Pixar slate, Monster University, the prequel to Monsters, Inc, will be hitting theatres in Summer of 2013. 

And the one that has everyone scratching their heads right now is the mystery project coming out in November of 2013.  When Pixar made the announcement earlier this week, no title was announced, no plot information was revealed, none of the attached talent was discussed...just that they have a film scheduled for release on November 27, 2013.  Pete Docter, the director of Up, has apparently been cooking up something, and the rampant speculation says this is Docter's next project. 

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

The Coming of the Alpocalypse!

This is it!  The big day is here!  "Weird Al" Yankovic's new album, Alpocalypse, comes out today!  Stupid Canada Post strike...I pre-ordered my copy on Amazon.ca a month ago!  Who knows when the hell it's going to arrive now?

Oh, well.  At least Weird Al has me covered.  He released the video for his lead single, Perform This Way, yesterday!  As you may recall, 'tis a parody of Lady Gaga's Born This Way.

My thoughts...meh.  As I kinda blogged when he first leaked Perform This Way to the Internet, there's a whole feeling of, "I'm parodying this because I have to," to this, and as such, it just feels like it's lacking...something.  Maybe it's because Lady Gaga is too easy a target, making the jokes seem too easy.  I don't know.  It's good, but I don't think it's one of Weird Al's best.

I've watched this a few times, now, and I'm starting to wonder if Weird Al had his head digitally superimposed on a woman's body.  There's just some scenes in there where his bangs float over his forehead in a weird way, and the head just doesn't seem proportioned to the body.  

Oh, well.  I can still pass the time waiting for this Canada Post strike to end.  As previously announced, all of the songs on Weird Al's digital EP Internet Leaks were all the original songs on this new album.  Since I bought Internet Leaks when it first came out in 2009, I at least already own half of the album.  

Here's my favourite from the Internet Leaks  collection, and thus one of my favourites from Alpocalypse, and that's this little ditty called Skipper Dan:

Pathos from a Weird Al song. Whoda thunkit?

And lastly, it's just not a Weird Al album without a polka medley.  The new album has actually been streaming since last week, so the fan-made music videos are starting to pop up online.  Ladies and gents, here's Polka Face:

Now let's get this damn postal strike settled so my CD will arrive in the mail!

Monday, June 20, 2011

The Muppets Trailers

There's a new Muppet movie on the horizon!  I'm actually geeking out about this harder than I though I would.

There's a long and illustrious history as to how this new Muppet movie came to be.  Disney has been trying to buy the Muppets for quite some time.  Back in 1990, it looked like Disney and Jim Henson had finally inked a deal.  But then...the sudden and untimely passing of Jim Henson.  Disney cancelled the deal, so as not to look like graverobbers.   Disney and the Muppets still worked closely together, though, having produced the Muppet movies The Muppet Christmas Carol and Muppet Treasure Island, and the Muppet show revival Muppets Tonight.  Disney finally acquired the Muppets back in 2004, and they've been working to re-introduce the brand through TV specials and direct-to-DVD movies, such as The Muppets Wizard of Oz and the recent Christmas special, A Muppet Christmas: Letters to Santa.

Enter Jason Segel.  A few years back, Segel was the writer, producer, and star of a romantic comedy called Forgetting Sarah Marshall.  I've never seen the film, but apparently our protagonist -- Segel's character -- tries to forget Sarah Marshall by channeling his creative energy into creating a rock opera based on Dracula to be performed entirely with puppets.  When it came time to actually stage this for the film's conclusion, Segel contacted the Muppet folks.  The Muppet folks gladly obliged.  While they were filming the scene, Segel struck up a rapport with the Muppet folks, admitted his lifelong fandom for the Muppets, and before he knew it, he was in the head offices of Disney Studios pitching his idea for a new Muppet movie.  Disney gave the project the green light.  This was back in 2008 or so.  There have been many stops and starts in development, but when James Bobin, co-creator and director of the cult classic comedy Flight of the Conchords signed on to direct, and with a quick re-write of the script by the folks at Pixar, the final pieces fell into place, and filming began last fall.

The plot is thus:  our hero is Walter, a Muppet-looking fellow who is a lifelong fan of the Muppets, as they are the only people who know of who looks like him.  When Walter learns of a plan by the villainous Tex Richman to demolish the Muppet Theatre and drill for oil beneath, Walter sets out to reunite the Muppets and stage a show to raise the money to buy back the Muppet Theatre and stop Tex Richman.   Walter is joined in his quest by his best friend Gary (played by Segel) and Gary's girlfriend Mary (played by the always adorable Amy Adams).  Chris Cooper will be playing the evil Tex Richman.  It's just not a Muppet movie without celebrity cameos, and some of the known cameos include Jack Black, George Clooney, Billy Crystal, Neil Patrick Harris, and Ben Stiller.

So there's been a bunch of trailers released for The Muppets over the past few months.  The first one was a spoof of romantic comedy trailers, and was in front of Pirates of the Carribean: On Stranger Tides.

The second one was in front of The Hangover Part II, and was a spoof of the The Hangover Part II trailer. We also catch two of the celebrity cameos in this one: Wanda Sykes and Danny Trejo.

The third one rips on Green Lantern and was in front of Green Lantern:

Following the frustration of Segel's voice over in that one, we finally got a real trailer this past weekend. I'm guessing, it being a Disney production and all, it'll be in theatres in front of Cars 2 this Friday.

The Muppets hits theatres on November 23.

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Saturday, June 18, 2011

Rainy Day Blues

Summer is always a very busy time at work, and it looks like this is going to be the last weekend to myself for a while, so I decided to head on into the city for the day. Wasn't really sure why...didn't have any goals to accomplish. All I know is, sometimes, it's nice to get away for a day.

Of course, one of my first stops was Best Buy. When I finally got my Internet connection at home, I was fascinated to see that my wireless router had a USB port on the back. According to the instruction manual, this is so you can plug in a frequently shared device -- such as a printer -- or a flash drive or external hard drive so it can serve as network storage. So, naturally, I wanted to get a cheap little flash drive to try this out. I've been finding that Best Buy seems to be the best place for cheap flash drives. Picked up a 4G for $10, which will serve me well for my experiments.

But yeah. It's all plugged into the wireless router and I have network storage. The question now is what to store on it.

And of course, off to go shopping for Blu-Rays. I've been depressed that past few times I've returned from the city without any new DVDs or Blu-Rays. In the long run, that's probably good, because it means I'm saving money. But still, it's a tough habit to break.

The Superman Motion Picture Anthology: 1978 - 2006 is something that came out last week, and I would love to get it.  This contains every Superman movie made...the Christopher Reeve ones and Bryan Singer's reboot from '06.  AND for the first two, you get both the original theatrical editions and the Richard Donner cuts.  As awesome as this would be in my DVD library, I'm still a little gunshy at $110 SRP.  Amazon.ca has it for $85, but still, dude, that's a lot of money.

But I was still able to get my DVD fix.  One of the first DVDs I ever bought was the Terminator 2: Ultimate Edition, and it always felt like there was a hole in my collection without The Terminator.  However, there are no super-special editions for The Terminator.  The only one came out in 2001, was a limited edition, and is long out of print.  However, I discovered that it was released on Blu-Ray just last week, in one of those conversation piece "book editions."  That should be pretty self-explanatory...the package is actually a nice little book about the movie.  I saw that and figured it was worthy of my collection.

I also picked up Apollo 13 on Blu-Ray.  I was blogging about a month ago that I discovered that my Apollo 13 DVD had fallen victim to disc rot, and is no longer playable in my Blu-Ray player.  I snatched my Apollo 13 DVD out of a discount bin for $10, so when I saw the Apollo 13 Blu-Ray in a discount bin for $12, I figured, "Yeah...I can buy a replacement." 

And to cap things off, I snatched up Wallace and Gromit: The Complete Collection.  This contains every Wallace and Gromit short film ever made!  Again, I originally had this on DVD.  However, though, between the release of the DVD and the invention of Blu-Ray, they made a fourth Wallace and Gromit short, entitled A Matter of Loaf and Death.  I figured the release of another Wallace and Gromit short made this worthy of the double-dip.  And hey, discount bin for just $15. 

And I guess I did have a goal in mind on this trip...I wanted to see Green Lantern.  You know me, I'm a sucker for superhero films.  And Green Lantern...well, it's not as bad as most of the critics are making it out to be.  It's just...meh. 

You know, it's long been said that the difference between Marvel and DC can be summed up in the old saying, "Some are born into greatness, others have it thrust upon them."  DC heroes are born into greatness, Marvel heroes have it thrust upon then.  So with Green Lantern, they changed Hal Jordan to a guy who has it thrust upon him, and as such, he spends too much time on Earth moping about whether he should be a hero or not.  It just...didn't work for me. 

And I actually burst out laughing at the film's climax.  One of my most hated cliches of superhero films reared its ugly head, and when I saw it, especially given the cosmic powers of our hero and villain, I just couldn't help but chuckle at how absurd it was. 

So, yeah.  Ultimately Green Lantern reminded me of the Fantastic Four films...they barely scratched the surface of this very rich comic book universe, instead giving us something that seems slapped together and phoned in in order to cash in on the current superhero trends. 

Look for a complete review over on the main page in the next day or so. 

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Ghosts of Saturday Mornings Past

So, I'm spending another evening torturing myself by browsing through the Warner Archive Collection.  I think I've blogged about this in the past...it's a really neat concept.  Warner Brothers went through their archives and found a bunch of their classic films.  While they know there's a market to release these films on DVD, they know it's an incredibly small market, and really not worth it to produce the DVDs in mass quantities.  So, what they did was they converted these movies to digital files, and they make the DVDs to order.  That's right, they burn them on demand!

Granted, these DVDs have no bonus features, and they've done little to nothing in the way of digital restoration...just burned them to DVD straight from the highest quality source they could find.  But that's OK.  These are for cinephiles who wants these just because they never thought they'd see the light of DVD.

I have only one problem with the Warner Archive Collection:  THEY DON'T SHIP TO CANADA.  There's a few titles in there I'd love to get, but when it asks me for my address, it says, "Cannot ship to your location."  There's warnings all over that they only ship in the USA.  It's a very frustrating case of "look, but don't touch."  

And now, they're starting to dig through their animation archives, and starting to dig up some classic Hanna Barbera Saturday morning cartoons.

Man o man, this one was announced a few months ago, and I'd sure love to get it.  The definition of cheesy cartoon crossovers, The Jetsons Meet the Flintstones.  Thanks to Elroy Jetson's time machine gone awry, the Jetsons find themselves thrown back to prehistoric times, where they meet the Flintstones.  The Flintstones help the Jetsons adjust to the days of the caveman, and then the Flintstones are flung into the far future, where they quickly become the new mascots for Spacely's Sprockets.

It was made in the late-80s as part of this huge series of TV movies that Hanna-Barbera made, starring a bunch of their classic cartoon characters.  CBC showed them on Saturday mornings when I was a kid.  I'd watch them occasionally, as they nicely filled the void between CFRN's early morning of Masters of the Universe and The Smurfs, and ITV's afternoon of The Transformers, G.I. Joe, MASK, Visionaries, Jem, and everything else that made the 80s FREAKING AWESOME.  But yeah.  Among those movies, The Jetsons Meet the Flintstones is truly the best and most famous.

And then I start browsing some more, and I see they released The Dukes: The Complete Series.  Holy crap, they released The Dukes on DVD, better known as The Dukes of Hazzard cartoon.

At the height of The Dukes of Hazzard popularity in the early-80s, it actually spawned a Saturday morning animated spin-off known simply as The Dukes.  In grand Saturday morning cartoon style, Boss Hogg decides to end his long-standing feud with the Dukes once and for all by challenging the Dukes to a race around the world.  So Bo, Luke, and Daisy (and Coy and Vance in the early episodes, as this was made during the Coy and Vance era) hop in the General Lee and head off for Paris, London, Tokyo, and other exotic locales, with Boss Hogg and Roscoe in hot pursuit, cheating along the way to win the race.

I didn't get this cartoon on TV when I was a kid, but my grandparents did.  I have very fuzzy memories of watching it one Saturday morning when visiting my grandparents.  And I remember thinking it was incredibly cool.  I would get this purely on that fuzzy memory.

So, yeah.  Some of the things I'd be disposing my disposable income on if the Warner Archives shipped to Canada.  Those two...and Steel.  Come on!  Everyone should see the classic Shaq superhero epic!  Just to see what a train wreck it is.  

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Ninja Turtles Return...Again

So...they're doing a new Ninja Turtles cartoon.

For those just coming in, about a year or two ago, Nickelodeon swooped in and bought the entire Ninja Turtles franchise.  They own all of it now.  And, of course, they're getting ready to bring it back in a big, bad way.  A new animated series is in production, to premiere in the fall of 2012, and today they unveiled the voice cast.  The new Turtles are....

Jason Biggs is Leonardo.  That's right, still best remembered as the guy who f--ked a pie in American Pie is now the leader of the TMNT.

Sean Astin is Raphael.  Astin, big child star in the 1980s, starred in The Goonies, his most recent big role was Samwise Gamgee in The Lord of the Rings trilogy.

Greg Cipes is Michelangelo.  Cipes, of course, a veteran voice actor who was Beast Boy in the Teen Titans cartoon. 

Now here's where things get surreal for me.

Legendary voice actor Rob Paulson is Donatello.  Paulson was Yakko on Animaniacs, Pinky on Pinky and the Brain, Arthur on The Tick, and...Raphael on the original Ninja Turtles cartoon.

That's right, the original Raphael is the new Donatello.  In the interview with Entertainment Weekly where this new voice cast was announced, Astin did say that it's kind of weird having the original voice there in the recording studio, and he would frequently end takes by turning to Paulson and going, "Umm...am I doing this right?" 

It's going to be quite the thing to see when it premieres in the fall of 2012.

Monday, June 13, 2011

The Alpocalypse Parodies

Just a little over a week to go before Weird Al's new album Alpocalypse comes out!  My copy is pre-ordered on Amazon.ca, and I can hardly wait for it arrive!

Anyway, starting to get a few comments on the blog telling me what songs Weird Al parodies on his new album.  Seeing as to how it's now part of the track listing on Amazon.ca and iTunes, I may as well share.

1)  Perform this Way - As previously revealed on YouTube a couple months ago, a parody of Born This Way from Lady Gaga.

3)  TMZ - From the title, it's obviously going to be about the gossip-sharing website.  It's going to be a parody of You Belong With Me from Taylor Swift.

5)  Polka Face - The polka medley.  I won't go into the list, but some of the songs in it are Poker Face, Womanizer, I Kissed a Girl, Fireflies, Need You Now and Justin Beiber's Baby.

7)  Party in the CIA - Riffing on Party in the USA from Miley Cyrus.  Weird Al's first parody of a Disney kid!

9)  Another Tattoo - Spoofing Nothin' On You by B.o.B. featuring Bruno Mars.  Hmmm...this is the only one where I`m not familiar with the original, so let`s try to find it on YouTube:

11)  Whatever You Like - Part of the Internet Leaks collection, parodying Whatever You Like from T.I.

Sunday, June 12, 2011

Latest Targ's Up!

U62: The Targ -- My podcast

Are you ready for a new podcast?  Well, tough, because I've got one for you.

Episode 4.23: Grind Away gets back to the weekly grind of my podcast.  We're chatting about the new Nintendo system, we shine the spotlight on some lesser-known Batman villains, and Kevin Smith is getting into reality TV.

Give it a listen!

Click here to go download it!

Head here to subscribe in iTunes!

U62: The Targ on Facebook

Saturday, June 11, 2011

Movie Review -- Green Lantern: Emerald Knights

So, DC Comics and Warner Brothers Animation has unleashed the latest in their series of direct-to-video animated films upon the world.  And, as is my way, I ran out and bought it and am spending the weekend watching it.  It's time to take a look at....

Directed by Chris Berkeley, Lauren Montgomery, and Jay Olivia

Starring the voices of Nathan Fillion, Jason Isaacs, Elisabeth Moss, Kelly Hu, Arnold Vosloo, Henry Rollins, and Roddy Piper.  

Backstory:  So, Warner Brothers made the decision that, since only the Batman and Superman animated films sold huge numbers, they'd only make movies about Batman and Superman.  But hey!  There's a Green Lantern movie hitting theatres in another week!  So, they got the go ahead to make a Green Lantern animated film as part of the merchandise tie-in.  They decided to go the route of the similarly titled Batman: Gotham Knight and tell a series of short stories focusing on the wide array of heroes that populate the Green Lantern Corp.  Is this little more than another piece of merchandise, or does it rise above and become it's own film?

Plot:  The villain Krona is preparing to launch an onslaught on the Green Lantern's home planet of Oa.  The rookie Green Lantern Arisia is nervous on the eve of her first battle, so Hal Jordan calms her nerves and inspires her with tales of some of the other Green Lanterns.  The tales are:

  • The First Lantern - The saga of Avra, a lowly scribe chosen to be the first Green Lantern, and how he unlocked the true power of the power rings.
  • Killowog - The tale of the Green Lantern's drill sergeant Killowog, and how he became the hard-ass DI he's known for.
  • Laira - The warrior Lantern Laira, and her first solo mission, where she's sent to reign in an evil despot who's conquered her own planet.  And the despot turns out to be...her father.
  • Mogo Doesn't Socialize - Based on the classic Alan Moore/Dave Gibbons tale, the warrior Bolphunga the Unrelenting goes off to battle Mogo, the greatest Green Lantern of them all.  But when Bolphunga does find Mogo, it's a bit more than he bargained for.  
  • Abin Sur - One of the adventures of Abin Sur, the Lantern before Hal Jordan, as he engages in philosophical debates with Sinestro and learns the ultimate fate of the Green Lantern Corp.  
The final tale, Emerald Knights, catches up with Arisia, as she enters the battle against Krona.  Will she be able to defeat this enemy and write her own chapter in Green Lantern history?

What I Liked:  There's some great outer space action set pieces in this.  As with most of the DC/WB productions, the voice acting is top-notch.  Bolphunga is voiced by wrestling legend Roddy Piper, and the challenges he issues are pure wrestling bluster.  It was great. 

What I Didn't Like:  Well, they used all the same character designs as the other Green Lantern film, First Flight, so I don't know why they just didn't go all the way and make this an official sequel, but they didn't so there ya go. 

Final Verdict:  It's tough to put my finger on.  I wanted to like this one more, but I'm just kind of walking from it going, "Meh."  It doesn't feel like they put a lot of effort into this one.

2.5 Nibs

Bonus Features:  On the Blu-Ray, you get an interview with comic book writer Geoff Johns about how awesome Green Lantern is, a featurette on the history of the Green Lantern Corp, a running commentary with Johns and DC's editor Dan DiDio, a virtual comic, two character profiles on Abin Sur and Laira, 2 Green Lantern-centric episodes of Batman: The Brave and the Bold, and a preview of the next animated film, Batman: Year One

Monday, June 06, 2011

Revising the Blog and More Smurfs!

So, for those who might not know me personally, I've got my Internet hooked back up at home again.  Yay!

And with that done, I started looking at this blog, and thinking it might be time to re-design the layout again.

I liked the old layout, but I wanted something a little bit wider so it's I can more easily embed the movie trailers that I like to rip apart. 

So let's see if this is wide enough.  Here's the latest trailer for The Smurfs

As I was telling a colleague not too long ago, there's a great movie to be made from The Smurfs, but this isn't it.

Let's try with another trailer...here's The Adventures of Tintin: The Secret of the Unicorn

To quote The Simpsons: "I thought these comics were only available in French class!"

Steven Spielberg tries his hand at performance capture to bring this movie version of the world-famous comic book. Peter Jackson of The Lord of the Rings is on board as producer, and current Doctor Who showrunner Steven Moffet along with Shaun of the Dead and Scott Pilgrim vs. the World director Edgar Wright wrote the script. It's due out this Christmas.

But yeah. I think this new format will work just fine.

Sunday, June 05, 2011

The Targ Returns!

U62: The Targ -- My podcast

I'm back, baby cakes!  It's been two months and an episode of U62: The Targ was screaming to get out!

Episode 4.22: Yet Another Return explains where I've been...again.  We also talk about Weird Al's new album, discuss the big hockey story of the week, and try to get to the bottom of one of the best-known urban legends.

Give it a listen!

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Saturday, June 04, 2011

X-Men: First Class Review

Well, gang, I've finally got my Internet back up and running at home!  Oh, it's great to have Internet access at home again.  Not that I didn't like going down to the library to check my e-mail and paying my bills in person at the bank...I was starting to like the human contact.  Maybe I'll keep doing it.

Anyway, I wound up buying a wireless router that I didn't need, so I went into the city today to take that back.  And while I was in the city, I decided to stay in and watch....

X-Men: First Class, the latest in the X-Men franchise.  As you know, I'm a sucker for all these superhero films, and I really love the novelty of a period superhero film, so when I first heard this was set in the 1960s, I was intrigued.  When Matthew Vaughn, the director of Kick-Ass, signed on to direct, I was even more intrigued.  And the hat trick was scored by Bryan Singer, returning to the franchise in the position of co-writer and producer.

So, what did I think of this latest installment?  Well, being online at home again means my official website is back up and running, so head on over to my movie reviews page to read my review!

Oh, and with my website back up and running, you'll see I've copy-and-pasted my Thor review over there as well.