Just forget the words and sing along

Thursday, May 29, 2014

Fishing in the Discount Bin - The Muppet Movie

Here we are again, Fishing in the Discount Bin.  Watching a movie I own and then blogging about it because why not?  This time out, one of my childhood favourites, The Muppet Movie.  This pops up in my notes at August 30, 2013.

The Muppet Movie movie posters

Monday, May 26, 2014

The Unofficial Journalism School

I've finally begun the long and arduous task of rebuilding my website, Chaos In a Box.com.  I mean, I still give that URL out to people as my online calling card, and I'm paying for the URL, so people should see something a little better than my early-2000s HTML-ing skills when they go there.  Besides, when I first moved servers some 8 years ago, I wound up with a lot of dead links that I've been meaning to go back and fix.  A friend of mine installed everyone's favourite web software for me, WordPress, and I'm slowly starting to transfer everything over.

But, seeing as to how I wrote every page by hand before my website had a proper back end, that's some 400+ webpages I have to reformat and copy over.  It's a lot of cutting and pasting, pretty much.

Yesterday was my first real day of copying and reformatting.  I managed to copy over and reformat the earliest pages of my website, the very genesis of my blog, and that's my opinion column, Chaos in Print, which ran in The Dagligtale, the student newspaper of Augustana.

See, back in the day, I had my radio show on the college station, but I wanted more listeners.  So, in a flash of cross-promotional genius, I started writing an opinion column for the Dagligtale to plug my radio show.  This being the late-1990s, the dot-com bubble was still blowing up, so I desired a web presence.  Following the advice of some friends, I found some free web space and started building a website.  Needing content for my website, I started posting my columns.  Then, I graduated from college.  I no longer had my radio show, or my opinion column in the newspaper.  But I still had my website, so I thought, "Why not keep writing the column, and posting it on the website?"

And thus, I started blogging.  I don't think I actually heard the term "blog" to describe what I was doing for another 2 or 3 years.

It was interesting, skimming over those old articles and reformatting them.  What happened to you, college Mark?  So full of passion and fire...  Here's some of the highlights:
  • Armageddon is the greatest movie ever made!
  • Dax from Deep Space Nine and the Pink Power Ranger are the hottest women ever!  (This was a recurring motif)
  • Physics is the last bastion of free thought.  (I was told that a philosophy professor quoted this on a final exam.)
  • Today, I visited 100.3 the Bear and acted like a total hick.  I'll never work in radio for real.  (Yes, I visited the Bear and wrote an article for the paper about how real radio stations operate.)
  • When something's this big, you can't help but get swept up in it.  (This was me describing the hype for Episode I
In fact, that last quote makes me chuckle.  That's from the final article I wrote for the Dag.  I called it The Interview.  I was laughing at how that column came to be.  It was perhaps my first lesson in the true power of radio.  For their final issue of the school year, and their final issue ever, the co-editors of the paper decided to dedicate the paper to "The 10 Most Interesting People on Campus."  The people were to submit their nominations, and whoever got the most nominations would be declared one of the most interesting, and asked to write an article.

So, when the paper came out, and nominations were open, I got behind the mic on my show and said, "Hey, everybody!  Be sure to nominate me as one of the most interesting people on campus!"  The Dag came out monthly, so on my show, for a whole month, I encouraged people to nominate me.  I was told later on that the co-editors were very unhappy with how I encouraged the listeners to vote for me, and I could tell when they called me up to inform me that I had made it and asked for my article that, yeah, I had made them grumpy.

But I knew it was the only way I would be able to get an article in the final issue, as I really offended one of the co-editors in my final months.  That guy...I did not get along with him at all.  He wanted to make the paper "edgy," and thus printed a lot of highly bizarre, surrealistic, offensive articles.    He told me once he kept trying to dump my column, considering it not "edgy" enough, but the other editor always vetoed him, because the other editor liked my stuff.  Things came to a head when that one co-editor was running unopposed for Student Union President, and thus launched his "edgy" campaign.  I countered by running an equally "edgy" campaign, encouraging people to vote no for him.  And I learned a lesson that's still true in the real world:  people who tell you to question authority really don't like it when you question them.

(Just typing those words makes me want to go back into the newsroom.)

But reading those articles and remember those struggles, I just couldn't help but laugh.  It's like finding the diary you kept when you were 8-years old in the back of your closet.  There's no doubt in my mind that, at the time, I felt THIS WAS THE MOST IMPORTANT THING EVER!   15 years later, I just can't laugh at how silly it all was...at how silly I was.

That's another reason why I've been hesitant to start rebuilding my website.  I know I'll be running into a lot of stuff like this.  How many of YOU want to make the diary you kept when you were 8-years old public?  But on the other hand, it has been public for 15 years.  If someone really wants to read it, they're going to find it regardless.

That being said, though, a few names may be changed to protect the innocent.

And while we're on the subject, all this reminiscing about my time writing for the school paper made me decide to go back in my notes and dig out this reminiscing I wrote a few years ago.  November 20, 2010 is where it appears in my notes.  I only shared it with a few friends when I wrote it, but now, I feel it's safe for public consumption.  I titled this piece The Unofficial Journalism School.  Inspired by an article I read in the Edmonton Journal celebrating the anniversary of the Gateway - the student paper of the U of A - I decided to write my remembrances of the student papers I wrote for.  In addition to the Dagligatle, I wrote for the Nugget, NAIT's student paper, when I attended NAIT. 

So here's The Unofficial Journalism School.

Saturday, May 24, 2014

Marvelous Marvel Trailers

This past week, we were lucky enough to get, not one, but two new trailers for Marvel Comics adaptations!  Let's take a look at the bigger one, shall we?  Guardians of the Galaxy.

Guardians of the Galaxy Poster

That's the poster, now here's the trailer.

I don't know what to say...I'm totally diggin' this.  Every time I hear the classic rock accompanying epic shots of spaceships, I get fond flashbacks to watching Heavy Metal late at night on basic cable in my teen years.

This is why many are saying this is the big gamble for Marvel.  First up, it's not a widely known property.  Secondly, the trailers are making it look just so darn quirky.   But, the more I see, the more I like.  I like quirky.  Things like a walking talking raccoon *ahem* adjusting himself.  What?  This just look so strange it might work.

Now, this was the bigger one of the week, so you're probably wondering what the second Marvel adaptation trailer was.

Big Hero 6 Teaser Poster

When Disney bought Marvel five years ago, the immediate question was, "Does this mean we'll be getting Disney animated movies based on Marvel Comics someday?"  Ladies and gentlemen, today is someday.

Big Hero 6, like Guardians of the Galaxy, is one of Marvel's lesser-known properties, only surviving 2 mini-series.  It follows the adventures of Japan's premiere superhero team, with each member being Marvel's take on a beloved stock character from manga and anime.  Marvel's editor Joe Quesada said he wasn't surprised when Disney gravitated towards Big Hero 6, as the relationship between between young hero Hiro Hamada and his robot Baymax did seem rather Disney-esque. 

There's a lot of rage already from the Marvel zombies that the Marvel logo isn't at the front of this trailer, but I'm not surprised.  Again, according to Quesada, Marvel's been pretty hands-off with this one and it's been Disney Animation's baby all the way.  Besides, at the end of the day, since Marvel owns Disney, does it really matter what label Disney chooses to stick at the front?

Again, I kind of like what I see.  With the "armor popping off a chubby hero" gag, they're trying to invoke memories of Pixar's The Incredibles.  I do like the gag with the soccer ball, though.  I want to see more the heroics, though!  I've always been a big fan of superheroes in animation, so let's bring on more of the heroes!

The creative talent behind this one are Don Hall, who did Disney's last venture into 2D hand-drawn animation, 2011's Winnie the Pooh, and Chris Williams, who co-directed Bolt.  The voice cast has yet to be officially announced.  It's due out this November.

And while I'm talking Marvel movies, I feel like offering up a comment on yesterday's shocking news that Edgar Wright is no longer directing Ant-Man.  This is shocking, because Wright has been attached to direct Ant-Man ever since Marvel started producing their own films in 2006.  For the past 8 years, he's been refining the script and he's been responsible for the casting of Paul Rudd and Michael Douglas.  This has been his baby for so long that, for him to be gone, it's surprising.

But then, maybe not too surprising.  I have read that, ever since Marvel decided to do their whole "build up to an Avengers movie every few years" plan, the studio has become more hands-on, and more involved in the creative process.  Jon Favreau once said that's why he turned down Iron Man 3.  He had so much freedom making Iron Man, but making Iron Man 2, the studio starting insisting on all this extra stuff to be added in to start building up to The Avengers that it became frustrating. 

Which pretty much explains why the split is being described as "differing visions" for the film in their official news release.  Wright has been pretty up-front from the beginning that he wanted it to be largely comedic in tone, which probably wouldn't mesh too well with Marvel's current plans.  While they are lighthearted, they aren't comedic. 

No word on who the new director is, but Marvel says it'll be announced shortly.  Maybe Marvel will do like Pixar does with their constant changes in directors on their films, and Wright will get a co-director credit for his efforts.  Or at least a special thanks. 

Thursday, May 22, 2014

Fishing in the Discount Bin - Daredevil

Here we are again, with Fishing in the Discount Bin, where I watch one of the many movies I own and blog about it, because I really need to get out more.  With all the Ben Affleck as Batman news, I figured it was as good a time as any to revisit Daredevil.  This shows up in my notes at August 24, 2013.

Daredevil movie poster

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Waste of a Long Weekend

Well, the Victoria Day weekend has come to a close.  As much as I enjoyed just sitting around my house, enjoying the silence, I figured I should try to get out and do something.  So, with the final day of the long weekend here, I jumped in my car (Ol' Bessie-Lou, I call her), and headed off into the city!

As I've blogged before, in order to assuage any guilt I feel about spending too much money, I always figure I should buy at least one thing I actually need.  Well, then, lucky for me, I'm in need of a new jacket.  I've had my old one for 12 years now, and I've worn holes in all the pockets.  I've grown quite tired of losing stuff into the lining.  That, and I've grown quite a bit in the past 12 years (i.e. put on weight), leaving my old one embarrassingly tight in some places.  So a new jacket was definitely in order.

First stop, then, one of the many reasonably priced department stores!  And, I found one quite quickly.  It fit, it was in a colour I liked, and there were no holes in the pockets.  I'm now ready for long walks in the rain! 

With the necessities acquired and my guilt subsided, it was now off to my beloved West Edmonton Mall.  Did some browsing at my usual haunts, and made a grand discovery.  Something has finally happened that I've been wondering about since that fateful day in the autumn of 2012. 

The Disney Store now stocks Star Wars stuff.  I didn't snatch up anything because I found it to be mostly ridiculously overpriced, however, don't be surprised if one of those exclusive talking Han Solo action figures eventually finds its way to my collection.

Then off to HMV to peruse the DVDs and Blu-Rays, because my collection isn't big enough.  I managed to finally find a copy of Father Goose, released to Blu-Ray around a year ago.  This is one of my mother's favourite movies, and I wound up watching it a few times when I was a kid.  Released in 1964, Father Goose stars bonafied Hollywood legend Cary Grant.  Grant plays Walter Eckland, a beach bum content to drift with the tides in the South Pacific.  However, it is during World War II, and one of his pals, an officer in the Australian Navy, shanghais him into becoming a spotter -- he hides out on a deserted island and reports any enemy planes that fly overhead.  Hilarity ensues when a sassy French schoolmistress and her seven students get stranded on Walter's island.  My 10-year old self enjoyed it well enough, so it'll be interesting to see if my grown-up self gets more of the jokes. 

And now, with summer blockbuster season upon us, I of course, had to go see the big movie of the weekend.

Godzilla Movie Poster

Ah, Godzilla.  16 years after the last time they tried to do an American remake, Toho granted the USA a do-over.  And may I say, this time out, they do Godzilla right.  This feels like a Godzilla movie.  The music, the acting, the pacing, the giant monster fights.  It's a Godzilla movie!

But, because it is a Godzilla movie, it suffers from the same problems inherent to the franchise.  That is, it's kind of weak when there's no giant monster fights.  But the actors do the best they can with what they're given.

And it's such a tease!  Lots of other reviews have pointed out the similarity to Jaws, and how they only tease Godzilla for most of the film, only bringing him in for the climax, and I tell ya, it gets incredibly frustrating.  But it works, as when he does appear, I had to literally bite my tongue from cheering. 

So, yeah.  It was pretty good, but dang it, I want more Godzilla in my Godzilla movies. 

I've got the complete review up at my website, for you to see.

And that was pretty much it.  Just an attempt to get out and about and enjoy some of my long weekend. 

Monday, May 19, 2014

The Week That Was

Well, we had a lot of interesting movie and TV news break last week, and here I am, just chilling out at home, alone, on a long weekend and getting bored, so I may as well take to the blog and blog about it!

First up, the big movie news of the past week, they released the first picture of Ben Affleck as Batman!

Ben Affleck as Batman.  The batsuit is heavily influenced by "The Dark Knight Returns," with short stubby ears on the cowl and an oversized bat on his chest.

He is standing next to the new Batmobile.  The new Batmobile looks like a beefed up version of the Tim Burton Batmobile....like if the Tumbler and the Tim Burton Batmobile had a baby.

So what do I think of the suit?  It's very heavily influenced by Frank Miller's The Dark Knight Returns, as evident in the gigantic bat on his chest and the short stubby bat ears on the cowl.  I don't know if Affleck actually got that ripped, or if those muscles are sculpted into the suit.  Either way, this is an iteration of the Batman suit we haven't seen on the big screen yet.

Zack Snyder, the director of Man of Steel and this currently untitled Batman vs. Superman sequel, did say that this a B&W photo, so I'm wondering what the final colour scheme is.  If they keep with the Dark Knight Returns influence, probably grey and black.

I like it.  It's a new look for Batman, at least on the big screen, but I'm still hoping to see it in motion.  And hear what voice that Affleck adopts for Batman.

What else caught my eye?  We had the season finale of Arrow, and alongside that, came this magnificent 5-minute preview for their upcoming spinoff, The Flash.

I've been enjoying Arrow in its first two seasons, and since this is from the same creative minds, I'm optimistic.  I'm liking what I'm seeing.  I've always had a soft spot for The Flash, mainly because I adored the original live-action show from 1990.  And watching this, it does feel a lot like the pilot episode for the 1990 show.

The big similarity I'm seeing between this and the 1990 pilot is the fact that, after Barry Allen's lab accident, STAR Labs swoops in to start studying Barry Allen to find out why he did not die.  And then, when his powers start manifesting, the STAR Labs scientists start becoming his support team.  On the original show, though, it was just one STAR Labs scientist, who evolved into Barry Allen's love interest.  This time, though, it looks like he does have a whole team.

The big difference, though, is right away, they're starting with the Flash's rogues gallery.  Based on the glimpses we see, the Weather Wizard is going to be the villain in the pilot.  And that is a good thing.  The main criticism of the 1990 show is they waited until about 2/3rds through their first and only season to start introducing the rogues.  Looks like they've learned their lessons.

Looks like their going with Barry Allen's New 52 origin.  Originally, Barry Allen had no defining tragedy in his past.  In the New 52, his mother was murdered by that mysterious yellow blur, and his father was framed for the murder.  SPOILER WARNING:  The murder is the Reverse-Flash, who, in his demented mind has the ultimate Flash fanboy, decided to go back in time and murder Barry's mother and make the Flash a better hero by giving him a defining tragedy. 

My one complaint:  not sold on the Flash costume.  It's kind of baggy.

Speaking of trailers, we got the new trailer for Transformers: Age of Extinction.

I don't know...I think I'm done with this franchise.  When we got our first glimpse of Dinobots in the SuperBowl spot, I geeked out.  But as I see more and more in these trailers, I'm just seeing more the same.  Big robots, big explosions.  The novelty is gone.  My childhood nostalgia is satisfied.  I'm very indifferent towards this.

And lastly, this caught my eye.  Did you know Disney is doing a new live-action movie version of Cinderella?  Kenneth Branagh is directing it, Lily James from Downton Abbey is Cinderella, Cate Blanchett is the wicked stepmother, and Helena Bonham Carter is the Fairy Godmother.

They released the first teaser and the teaser poster this week, and I really like the teaser poster.

Teser poster for Cinderella:  just a simple image of the legendary glass slipper.

I like this poster.  We usually get bad Photoshop jobs of the actors, but we don't get posters like this anymore:  just a single, iconic image from the film.  The icon here:  the glass slipper, although here, it looks more like it's carved from crystal. 

I won't bother posting the teaser, because it's pretty much just the poster, with the camera shooting some loving close-ups and whipping all around it.  But still...I just like this poster.

Cinderella comes out in March.

Sunday, May 18, 2014

We Got a Podcast!

U62: The Targ -- My podcast

It's the start of a new week, that means you need some new stuff to listen to while you do stuff!  Stuff!  That's why, for you, I've got a new episode of U62: The TargOn this week's episode, Episode 7.14: Mark Dreams of Movies, I ramble about
  • my thoughts on the season finales of Agents of SHIELD and Arrow
  • my opinion on Cineplex Odeon's plan to start charging $2 extra for the centre rows
  • I just re-watched Sam Raimi's first Spider-Man.  That is a very sad movie.  I tell you why!
All this and more on U62: The Targ!

Click here to go download it!

Head here to subscribe in iTunes!

Be a fan in Facebook! 

Thursday, May 15, 2014

Fishing in the Discount Bin - G.I. Joe: Retaliation

Welcome back to Fishing in the Discount Bin, my weekly watching of a movie I own, followed up with blogging about it.  This time, we get the sequel to one of my childhood favourites remade for the big screen, G.I. Joe: Retaliation.  This pops up in my notes at August 3, 2013.

G.I. Joe Retaliation poster

Tuesday, May 13, 2014

Son of Batman Review

Well, it's that time again.  DC and Warner Brothers have given us the latest in their series of straight-to-video animated films about some of those great DC characters!  (And by "great DC characters," I mean Batman and/or Superman, because the suits determined those are the only ones that sell well and hence the only animated films we're going to get.)  It arrived on Friday, and watched it over the weekend, so let's crack the shrink wrap and take a look at...

Son of Batman DVD cover

Son of Batman

Directed by Ethan Spaulding

Starring the voices of Jason O'Mara, Stuart Allan, Morena Baccarin, Thomas Gibson, Giancarlo Esposito, Xander Berkeley, David McCallum, and and Sean Maher.

Backstory:  So, a few years ago in the Batman comics, they figured it was time to shake things up and add a new Robin.  The latest to take upon the mantle:  Damien Wayne, the long lost son of Bruce Wayne and Talia, the daughter of Ra's Al Ghul.  Conceived during one of their romantic dalliances, young Damien was being trained from birth to be the world's greatest assassin, and eventually take leadership of Ra's Al Ghul's organization, the League of Assassins.  People weren't sure what to make of Damien at first:  brutal, violent, sadistic, and spoiled from a life of privileged, but under the guidance of his father, he did become a great hero and worthy successor to the role of Robin.  Of course, it was time to bring him to life in animation.  The latest animated offering, Son of Batman, is loosely based on Batman & Son, the storyline that originally introduced Damien. 

Plot:  Deathstroke mounts an assault on the headquarters of the League of Assassins, with the goal of taking leadership of the organization of Ra's Al Ghul.  With Ra's Al Ghul dead and the League of Assassins now at war with Deathstroke's legions, Talia knows there's only one man who can keep young Damien safe while she leads the war against Deathstroke.  It's time for Damien to meet his father:  Batman.  At first, Batman isn't sure what to make of his young son.  Spoiled, vain, arrogant, and thirsty to avenge his grandfather's death.  But, Batman realizes the young man has potential, and they soon launch their own investigation into Deathstroke's plan, which brings Batman back to his old nemesis, Dr. Kirk Langstrom, aka the Man-Bat. What is Deathstroke's ultimate plan?  Can Batman stop his son from heading down a path of vengeance? 

What I Liked:  The most pleasant surprise was Sean Maher (Simon from Firefly) popping up to do the voice of Nightwing.  He's a really good Nightwing, and I like how Nightwing and Damien instantly adopt a sibling rivalry.  There's some good fight scenes.  Jason O'Mara has the great gravelly qualities of Batman's voice perfect.  Oh, and Talia's cleavage. 

What I Didn't Like:  OK, I've seen and/or read the story of Robin's origin story many times now to know that this is pretty by-the-numbers.  Thomas Gibson is woefully miscast as Deathstroke, being unable to bring the qualities of gravelly menace to the voice that the role requires.  I'm sorry, I hear that voice, and he'll always be Greg from Dharma and Greg.  But perhaps the biggest missed opportunity is in the Bruce Wayne/Damien Wayne relationship.  There's no father/son dynamic at play.  There's no struggles on Batman's part as he deals with fatherhood.  It's all, "Oh, yes, here's another fine orphan with qualities to make him a fine Robin."  Couldn't we have had Batman struggle just a little bit with the knowledge that he's FATHERED A CHILD and attempt to be a father? 

Final Verdict:  So formulaic.  Really offered up nothing new, or anything that made Damien such a notable character in the comics.

2 Nibs

Bonus Materials:  Goodies on the Blu-Ray include a featurette on the League of Assassins, a featurette on Damien's brief history in the comics, a featurette on the character design, 4 bonus cartoons from the various Batman animated series, and a sneak peak at the next animated film, Batman:  Assault on Arkham.  Which is going to be based on the best-selling Arkham video games. 

Sunday, May 11, 2014

New Week! New Podcast!

U62: The Targ -- My podcast

I'm starting to grow sad as I pump out my podcast, U62: The Targ.  It seems like I just started doing it again, but looking at the calendar, it's getting to be that time of the  year where I'm going to be very busy in my day job, so I take the summer off from the podcast.  But, that day's not here yet, so in the meantime, I get to give you Episode 7.13:  Just Stuff.  In this one, I ramble about:
  • I don't think I ever told the tale of working on the crew of the MuchMusic VJ Search.  So I finally decide to tell that tale.
  • It's another installment of "Mark Tastes Random Things," as I sample and give my thoughts on Domino's Specialty Chicken, aka the Chicken-Crust Pizza
  • And I give the rundown on all the comic book based new TV shows we're getting this fall:  two from Marvel and FIVE! from DC.  
All this and more on U62: The Targ!

Click here to go download it!

Head here to subscribe in iTunes!

Be a fan in Facebook! 

Thursday, May 08, 2014

Fishing in the Discount Bin -- Hellboy II: The Golden Army

Welcome back to Fishing in the Discount Bin, my weekly blog about something in my movie library that I've watched recently.  We return to the cinematic saga of Hellboy with Hellboy II: The Golden Army.  This appears in my notes at July 28, 2013.

Hellboy II: The Golden Army movie poster

Monday, May 05, 2014


Not all trips to the city are full of fun and excitement and wacky misadventures.  No, sometimes their full of the mundane, the jobs that must be done, and collecting the necessities of life.

For example, on Saturday, I was in need of a kettle.

It didn't take long to figure out that the mysterious puddles being left on my stove top were coming from my old, leaky kettle.  Time to retire ol' greenie and get something new.  The housewares section of Wal-Mart had something new to boil the water for my tea, so now I was on me-time.  Because I'm an overgrown manchild, that meant heading over to the toy section to see what's new in the world of action figures.

And that's where I saw something that made me roll my eyes.  Star Trek Hot Wheels.  Not classic Hot Wheels versions of the starship Enterprise.  Hot Wheels cars done up with Star Trek graphics.

So of course I had to buy a couple for my personal collection of toys.  What really struck me as odd was the fact that it looked like they took the graphics from the old 1960s comic book.  The logo is even the logo that adorned Star Trek merch back in the 1960s.  Not pictured are the ones I actually got:  Spock and Uhura. 

Down the road to Best Buy, still one of my favourite places to browse.  Now that I finally have the HDTV I'd been longing for for several years, I find I leave the store less sad than I used to.  There's currently not much out in the way of Blu-Rays that I'm after, but I still like to look.  Because you'll never know what I'll find.  Like the Sam Raimi/Tobey Maguire Spider-Man trilogy, newly released and newly discounted to plug the new Amazing Spider-Man 2.

When I got my first DVD player all those years ago, I swore I'd only upgrade from VHS to DVD if one of two criteria was met:
  1. It's one of my favourite movies.
  2. There's enough new bonus materials to warrant the re-purchase.
Now, as I upgrade from DVD to Blu-Ray, I find I've added a third criteria:  the disc is just so cheap, you guys.

So I snatched up the Spider-Man trilogy.  $30 for the boxed set, so that's $10 per disc.  How could I say no?  And there'd been some double-dips on the Spider-Man DVDs over the years, all now compiled onto the Blu-Ray, so criteria #2 was met, too.

And with all that Spider-Man on my mind, of course I was off to see The Amazing Spider-Man 2.  I know the critics have not been kind, getting mixed reviews all around.  I, on the other hand, kind of liked it.

Don't get me wrong, I agree with the main crticism.  There's a lot of stuff in this film.  Despite what you see in the commercials, Rhino is just a glorified cameo.  Way too little time is spent developing Electro as a villain.  He just kind of gets his powers and goes nuts.  Same deal with Harry Osborn and the Green Goblin.  Near the end of the film, you realize that they only stuck Green Goblin in there to do that...infamous thing he did in that one comic one time.  Ahem.  

(Trying not to spoil it, because it did surprise me that they went there.)

There's lots of good, though.  Andrew Garfield IS Spider-Man.  He's got the quips and the wisecracks down pat.  It's nice to see Spidey's scientific side, as we see him tweaking his web shooters to Electro can't short them out.  And, just like the last film, the true heart is the Spidey/Gwen Stacy romance.  Forget the superhero stuff, put Andrew Garfield and Emma Stone in a romantic comedy, because they are THAT good together.

Ultimately, this is a transition film.  They're trying to resolve and do away with what people didn't like in the last film, and set up their whole Spidey cinematic universe, with the two sequels and the Sinister Six film and the Venom solo film in the making.  But there's lots of good in it, so if you focus on the film, you'll like it.

I give it a 3 out of 4 Nibs, and you'll see I have my full review up on the main site.  

And that was my latest day in the city.  Would you like to come over for a cup of tea?  I've got this shiny new kettle and all. 

Sunday, May 04, 2014

The Targ on a Typical Day in May

U62: The Targ -- My podcast

I'm sure you're expecting me to say it.  But I'm not going to.  As I mention in this week's podcast, I appreciate setting aside a day to celebrate a franchise I love, but to do so because of a stupid pun makes no sense.

So when you're done with your Wookie Cookies and Blue Milk, why not give a listen to Episode 7.12:  Nope.  Not Gonna Say It.  Just a brief episode this week, as I ramble my thoughts on The Amazing Spider-Man 2 and the announcement of the Episode VII cast.

So, on this Star Wars Day, may I say...live long and prosper. 

Click here to go download it!

Head here to subscribe in iTunes!

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Thursday, May 01, 2014

Fishing in the Discount Bin - Hellboy

Welcome back to Fishing in the Discount Bin, my weekly rundown of some movie I own.  I seem to be on a bit of a Guillermo del Toro kick, as today, we get to one of his pet projects, Hellboy.  This appears in my notes at July 27, 2013.  

Hellboy Movie Poster