Category Archives: Rants

James Gunn on Superhero movies not taken seriously

By: Marv Castillo

Why are superhero movies not taken seriously? I’m one of the people who goes to the cinema all year to watch almost every movie that is out. I love the movies, I love storytelling, but the fact that independent films get more love that blockbusters and more popular movies, is a bit uncomfortable.

Filmmakers put the same amount of love in their projects. Nobody wants a movie to be bad. Maybe the studios care about the movie, but let’s remember that people who work in the industry want to make the best possible. It doesn’t matter if the movie is serious or mainstream.

I’ve seen indie films that are just plain boring, and bad. Same happens with some of the mainstream movies out there, some of them are just stupid. Never forget Transformers.

Movies are about storytelling, not about pretending to be the smart kid at school.

The Dark Knight not being recognized as the great movie it was at the Oscars is something I will never forgive to the Academy. That was not only a good superhero movie which set the bar really high. The second Batman film directed by Christopher Nolan was a great crime drama with amazing characters.

If there a chance to win if  The Dark Knight was nominated for Best Picture? Maybe not, I believe there’s some aspects of it that didn’t work for some people, but you can’t say that it was a bad movie… unless you’re a contrarian.

2014 was a great year for cinema, and it was a great year for comic book movies. Captain America: The Winter Soldier was an amazing film. X-Men: Days of Future Past gave life to the X-Men franchise. Guardians of the Galaxy was the movie I recommended the most in 2014, I loved that movie.

They were nominated for best visual effects and that’s great, but which Marvel movie doesn’t get a nomination for best visuals? There’s always one, at least.

I was saying since August that I wouldn’t be surprised if the Academy finally gives some recognition to superhero films, since they’re in the middle of an evolution. These movies are not only about the man who saves the girl in the third act. The Winter Soldier was a spy thriller. Guardians a great movie, period.

James Gunn didn’t get a nomination for best adapted screenplay, and I believe he did an amazing job. He took his Facebook, to write something about the subject with the best of the attitudes.

Whatever the case, the truth is, popular fare in any medium has always been snubbed by the self-appointed elite. I’ve already won more awards than I ever expected for Guardians. What bothers me slightly is that many people assume because you make big films that you put less love, care, and thought into them then people do who make independent films or who make what are considered more serious Hollywood films.

I’ve made B-movies, independent films, children’s movies, horror films, and gigantic spectacles. I find there are plenty of people everywhere making movies for a buck or to feed their own vanity. And then there are people who do what they do because they love story-telling, they love cinema, and they want to add back to the world some of the same magic they’ve taken from the works of others. In all honesty, I do no find a strikingly different percentage of those with integrity and those without working within any of these fields of film.

If you think people who make superhero movies are dumb, come out and say we’re dumb. But if you, as an independent filmmaker or a “serious” filmmaker, think you put more love into your characters than the Russo Brothers do Captain America, or Joss Whedon does the Hulk, or I do a talking raccoon, you are simply mistaken.

Guardians-of-the-Galaxy-Premiere-James-Gunn-with-Fan

Source: James Gunn

About that Star Wars Episode VII huge spoiler

By: Marv Castillo

Star Wars Episode VII is my most expected movie of 2015, more than Avengers: Age of Ultron and most than many other films of that year. Having friends and some contacts that work in movie news sites is great and I get a lot of information. I don’t want to know everything. I don’t want to write about everything, especially of the news are insignificant. Yesterday news, weren’t spoilers. Like I said, they were some kind of tiny nuggets, just saying were some characters live or what kind of role an actor has in this movie. If you sit down and think about it, you still don’t know a lot about the story. Yes, you have some cool information about the plot and you know some things that you could expect in the final cut of the movie, but really, the movie-going experience is not ruined. That being said, there’s a huge leak about Star Wars and it shouldn’t be posted anywhere.

I’m not saying I’m afraid of spoilers. Everytime my friends spoil a movie or show for me, I’m not going to lose control. Most of spoilers aren’t that shocking, but there are some things that you shouldn’t tell anyone when they’re about to see a movie. Maybe the ending the of The Sixth Sense or the big reveal in Empire Strikes Back, are big spoilers… and what I read today, is probably the biggest Star Wars spoiler since Episode V.

I didn’t go to a site and read the whole story, it wasn’t my own fault. I hate to say when things are not my fault, I never do that. But seriously, it wasn’t my own fault. When you enter a movie blog or something like that, the title of the big news never reveal what the article is about if spoilers are contained in the post. There’s a lot of spoiler alerts and you read that at your own risk. What I’m trying to say is: some asshole spoiled the movie for me on Twitter, instead. He just posted it and it landed on my feed. Thanks.

After reading the reveal, I started thinking that it’s most likely to be bullshit, but I visited /Film and Badass Digest and turns out they can back that up. What I read, was the actual big reveal of the film. By the way, thanks to /Film and Badass Digest for not posting any of those stuff even if you have the information. That just make those sites better. In movie geek blogs we are here to discuss films, not to ruin them, not to get clicks in the site.

You’re excited about the new movie, we get it, don’t go and publish a big spoiler in a site that pretty much everyone visits. Don’t spoil the big reveal of a big flick for your followers. It’s not cool, you’re not cool. You’re ruining the movie. I think my movie-going experience is not entirely ruined, I can enjoy Episode VII. But still, that asshole on Twitter didn’t think twice before posting a huge spoiler that could make the film way more fun. If you read the leak, don’t post it anywhere, don’t tell your friends, don’t link it to your site or Twitter profile. Just be quiet. Maybe you can hit yourself in the head thousands of times, probably you’ll forget the big reveal if you do that.

nooooooooo

I’m done with set pictures

By: Marv Castillo

I think I might be done with set pictures. It was cool to see the Batmobile before a lot of people, but here’s why I’m not gonna post set pictures anymore, only if they are important.

You should not care about the set pictures of any movie. We are getting a lot of sequels, we already know how things are supposed to look like. The new Batmobile was a different case. Zack Snyder uploaded the very first Batmobile picture some months ago and we got to see some of its feature, but other than that, it wasn’t a very clear photograph… everything was covered in smoke. This time we had the chance to see the Batmobile from almost every angle and it was cool while it lasted and then, Snyder posted another picture – an official picture – of Affleck’s new ride. 

Early this morning some Millenium Falcon were all around the internet, and I was about to post something about them. But you know what? The Millenium Falcon looks like the Millenium Falcon and that’s great, what else should I add? They’re a making a new episode in the Star Wars franchise, of course Han’s ship has to look the same. Yes, Star Wars: Episode VII is happening and everyone knows that. I created this site as a hobby, to report news with my own opinion, even if they’re small. Posting pictures to get clicks is not my thing. 

I’m grateful with the people who frequently visit this blog, we relaunched it last month and the views are increasing, but really, what you guys are reading are actual movie news, not some that Perez Hilton may publish in his website. This paparazzi thing drives me nuts and I don’t wanna be a part of it. I will post some set pictures if it’s legal and if it’s important. We know the Millenium Falcon is in the movie, we know how that thing looks like, Disney is not working on a reboot. 

I hope you guys understand, some sites are quite good posting set pictures, you can visit them if you wanna see those things, but I’m really done posting those. I go to University, I have other work to do and I have this blog. It’s tiring to write about set pictures that actually don’t mean anything. If I find something cool, I will publish it here for sure and share my comments. 

Thanks!

Is a Godzilla vs. King Kong movie possible?

By: Marv Castillo

The last edition of San Diego Comic Con was huge. We didn’t get extreme announcements like the Batman V Superman: Dawn of Justice, called “Batman vs. Superman” back then, and the first teaser trailer of Avengers: Age of Ultron. This year we got to hear the plans that each studio has for the future, one of them was the Godzilla sequel and the other project is a Skull Island movie, so… King Kong. We will get another King Kong movie.

Legendary Pictures was recently bought by Universal and now Godzilla is their property. In this moment the Marvel Cinematic Universe is highest-grossing franchise of all time, is not a surprise that many studios are interested in building their own cinematic universe with their characters. Sony is developing the Spiderverse, Marvel will grow their cinematic universe, Warner is working in Batman V Superman and future superhero movies and Universal will reboot their monsters and then, build a universe with them.

Godzilla will be released June 8, 2018. Don’t expect to see a crossover before that date. Guillermo del Toro also said he had some interest in filming some kind of Pacific Rim vs. Godzilla crossover. But we are talking about a fantasy that seems to be possible only in the mind of a fan, a CGI fest called: Godzilla vs. King Kong.

Would I be excited if that happens? Yes, absolutely. I love the first Godzilla vs. King Kong, it is very cheesy, but I like it. Just imagine an updated version of that movie. Picture in your head a fight between these two iconic characters, with the desgin of the new Godzilla and the new King Kong, I assume we are going to have some great eye candy. That movie would look awesome. But let me ask another question, is it a good idea? Godzilla is probably the most beloved monster in movie history. Everyone knows Godzilla, they may have never seen a movie featuring him, but the design of this character is so unique and recognizable that you can’t really run away from it (heh, “run away from it). What I’m trying to say is that Godzilla film is always a guaranteed hit, this monster is almost like Batman, design-wise you would recognize his spikes anywhere and everybody knows Godzilla. This film may be inevitable now that Godzilla and King Kong fan are salivating for this crossover, but I don’t think it is possible, and here’s why:

1. The last King of the Monsters movie was starting a franchise. Yes, it has a definitive ending, but we are open for a sequel, and that sequel is happening… it will happen in a very long time, 2018, but it is going to happen. This big Godzilla story is not really over, we are going to have some kind of Destroy All Monsters thing in the sequel, that’s all I know about it. Oh, and motherfucking Mothra, Ghidorah and Rodan will show up at some point in the movie.

The appereance of these monsters open the possibilty of a whole new world filled with weird monsters out there, and that’s what some of my friends say to justify the fact that King Kong will confront Godzilla in a future movie. There’s more stuff out there.

And I disagree, it doesn’t make a lot of sense. We are talking about a world that was in Warner Bros. and Legendary Pictures hands before Universal bought Legendary. The creatures in the latest Godzilla movie were some kind of prehistorical beings and they were huge, like they were ridiculously big. Guess who’s big too? That’s my second point here.

2. Godzilla is way too big. It is ok for Godzilla to be huge, that’s part of him. He will keep growing with the buildings. King Kong, in the other hand, nope. He is tiny compared with this new Godzilla. I know they can make a new design for him, and it is obvious they will, but how big? Imagine a 150 meter King Kong, that would be dumb. As a joke, I told to a friend of mine that a realistic fight between these two beasts, would be King Kong sucking Godzilla’s dick. He is just too a small to fight that thing.

Did you see the last Godzilla movie? You should have, because I’m dropping some spoilers. He fights two MUTOs, monsters that insanely big, the female MUTO is slightly smaller than Godzilla and the male is not really that big, but still huge. The movie didn’t portray the fight as a big challenge, so just picture these overpowered Godzilla – he has the atomic breath now – fighting a King Kong, who is not really the version of the character created by Toho.

Kongtoho

Did you know that? Toho has its own King Kong, with powers and different habilities. What’s the problem here? Toho’s King Kong is not from Skull Island, he comes from a place called Faro Island. Universal new movie is called Skull Island, but of course they can change the origin. Skull Island sounds way more familiar than Faro Island, it is a better way to market the movie, but for hardcore fans it is not going to make any sense.

Godzilla-2014-Roar

3. King Kong has a good story, let’s not ruin that. Skull Island is a prequel, by the way, a prequel offered to Joe Cornish. I’m sure they shake up some of the things we know about the character, but we are not going to get a Toho-like King Kong. I assume we will are going to see something similiar to the last King Kong movie direceted by Peter Jackson.

Making this beast an overpowered god who suddenly attacks a city is not really the brightest idea. Right in this moment, I think it will be better to keep these properties separate, different stories, different universes. There’s no need to ruin King Kong’s classic story adding him into a Godzilla movie. The best move for Universal, as movie makers, as storytellers, is to leave this big guy alone and just focus in good stories, more than box office success. It is clear that Godzilla future films will make more money now that we will finally see him fighting in the movie more monsters, classic monsters. And obviously, Skull Island is going to make more that $350 million worldwide, if it’s good.

If the producers are setting up a crossover it will help this movies in a massive way. Just look at the Marvel movies, you kinda had to see Iron Man, The Incredible Hulk, Iron Man 2, Captain America: The First Avenger, and Thor before watching the Avengers. But we are talking about superheroes, not big monsters. Universal can keep the idea of making crossovers of the classic monsters – I’m talking about The Wolf Man, Dracula, Frankestein and those folks – because it is honestly a better idea. The idea of an Universal monsters crossover in the future is more… down to Earth.

Keep their own stories alone, Edwards and Borenstein were building a new world and adding King Kong into that universe seems like a rushed move. Am I going to see the movie if it comes out? Of course I am. I spend a lot of money in the movie theater. Sure, I’m going to pay the ticket and enjoy some fights, but what about general audiences? Watching monsters fighting is cool and it entertains, but let’s not forget good storytelling and well created characters. Would it be another Man of Steel where everyone dies? Is this movie going to be nothing more than a CGI fest that will ruin the Godzilla storyline that Edwards is working on? Or is it going to be a critically aclaimed box office hit? Anywaus, best of luck, Universal.

king-kong-vs-godzilla

Anime… for kids, perverts, all around weird people?

By: Wai Law

The following are my thoughts on anime, it’s what I normally think when I get into a discussion with someone who says they hate anime for whatever reason, and my own opinions on things regarding anime.

There’s a huge social stigma around watching anime, just for the fact that anime is drawn.

“That’s for little kids.” “Grow up already.” “Stop watching those weird Japanese cartoons.” “Don’t be a weeaboo.” Are things that you normally hear when you first tell them you watch anime, and it infuriates me to no end.

First of all, anime is not for kids! At least not all anime is directed to kids. Drawing is a medium, not a genre. If the artists believes that the best way to tell his/her story is through the use of manga and anime, then it’s his/her right to do so. Sure there’s anime directed to little kids, but there are also shows with very mature plots, gore, psychological dramas, and romance dramas, things that a child would never understand, or not comprehend.

Another stigma is brought on by the fact that there is R rated content in anime, most particularly in “hentai”, and people have come to believe everyone that watches anime, must be a pervert.

Not everyone that likes anime, would like to watch tentacle rapes, not everyone who watches anime would even like watching characters have sex or even like watching shows that are nothing more than fanservice, with a vague, badly written plot.

Again, there is anime for everyone, you can watch anime of any theme, category, you like, and not all anime is the same. Just as not every movie or tv show anyone ever watches is the same, except maybe anything produced by Chuck Lorre.

Lastly the last group everyone associates anime with, are the weeaboos. People who became obsessed with anime, with Japanese culture, or rather their idea of Japanese culture, and try to act as though they were Japanese. These people are considered to be annoying, maybe because of their rejection of their own culture, and the fact that they try to replicate Japanese language, dressing as though they knew any of it.

Weaboos to me seem a little ignorant, they have generalized the entire Japanese culture, as anime watchers, as people who would try to be cute and weird and quirky. They glorify Japan’s food, language, and what they think is the way all Japanese people dress, act, and do all day.

People tend to see all people who enjoy watching anime as weeaboos, because they are the most noticed group, since they tend to be loud, and dress weirdly (think cat ears, goth Lolita outfits, ninja bandanas), but I assure you that this group of people do not represent a majority, most people just enjoy watching anime, and don’t find any reason to replicate anything that they watch in the shows, nor they find a need to incorporate Japanese words, or phrases in a normal conversation, (e.g. kawaii).

Source: Deremoe.com

Please don’t hesitate to watch an anime because of a group of people, or what you’ve heard about anime, there are great shows that deserve to be recognized, and I assure people everytime they say they don’t like anime because of their plots, or for their sexual content, that there are many kinds of anime and some might be right around their alley, they can be interesting, cute, tearjerking, funny, strange, whatever you can think of.

If what you don’t like is the artstyle, the way humans, and animals tend to look in anime, though, I have no problem with that, it is much more of esthetic and looks, that you find difficult to watch, and not the story, nor is it because of a misconception.

My point in conclusion, is give anime a try, you don’t have to like it, you don’t need to watch anime, but don’t knock it till you try it, and don’t think you’ll like an anime just because everyone seems to like it, when you are looking for recommendations on what anime you should watch, a sensible person would ask you about your interests, do you like action filled shows, or do you like a laid back funny story? You may come to understand the variety that can be found in anime, and even come to like a specific genre.

Is Rotten Tomatoes changing the way we think about movies?

By: Marv Castillo

I’m at the cinema with some friends. We’re about to choose the movie that we are about to see, and one my friends say: “Hey, wait a minute. I checked Rotten Tomatoes, it says that Man of Steel is a rotten movie… and it’s a really bad movie.” What this guy said  was really weird, because I saw Man of Steel  with this guy some days ago, and he said he loved that flick.

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 Source: Warner Bros.

Did this guy just said the new Superman movie is bad just because he wants to agree the 56% score that the movie holds on Rotten Tomatoes? Is this guy pretending he is a “movie critic” or something like that? I don’t get it, because when we saw that movie he even said that Man of Steel was the best movie of 2013, so far. The next day he says it’s a bad movie because he saw that film holds a rotten score… and by that, people are not supposed to like this film or at least share positive comments about it online.

For those who don’t know, Rotten Tomatoes is a movie site that gathers the top critics reviews and give a porcentage of how accepted the movie was by the critics. The site is quite useful sometimes if you don’t want to spend your money watching bad movies, because basically this site shows which movie is good or bad, but from the critics point of view.

So, maybe this friend of mine was too excited, and he was blinded by that all the visual effects and the fact that this is a Superman movie and this dude flies, but then he realised this movie was disappointing after thinking about it in his way home… or maybe he just changed his mind to agree most of critics and some of the regular people who review who share their review on this site.

Now look, I’m not here to defend Man of Steel or many other movies that were certified rotten by the website, because I was very disappointed by Zack Snyder. I’m here because movie viewers that change their opinions because of a number are very annoying. The last Superman movie is probably the best example to adress this issue because we can agree that Man Of Steel was the most polarizing film of 2013. Some people love it, some people hate it.

After it’s opening weekend, the reviews flooded the internet and most of them were bad or average. Viewers who enjoyed the film and Superman fans started changing their mind. Man Of Steel, in that moment, was panned by both fans and movie critics, with some exceptions of course.

The world is not supposed to agree in this kind of subjects. Like John Campea, editor-in-chief of AMC Movie News and creator of The Movie Blog says, film is subjective.

Seriously, I know people who hate Star Wars, and I’m talking about the original trilogy, not the precuels. There’s people who say the Exorcist is the worst horror movie in history. Maybe you have that friend who loves Anaconda or the one who constantly says that Roland Emmerich’s version of Godzilla is not that bad. Those are rotten films on this site. People that like and hate those movies actually exist. We don’t have to agree when we talk about films, no one is going to kill you if you say Spider-Man 2 is boring or if you didn’t like the Avengers or Pulp Fiction that much. Film is subjective.

You’re not a movie critic,  journalist, or you didn’t go to film school. You’re a movie fan or an average moviegoer. I’m not trying to be mean, but maybe you don’t know a lot about films. When people talk about direction, cinematography and all those things, you’re probably not going to care, you just want to know if the movie is good or not. You know what is a good story, yes. But all the other deep aspects that critics review? Probably not, they learned that through the years.

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Some weeks ago, what happened last year when I watched Man Of Steel for the second time happened again. Same scenario, different movie. We are about to see the new Godzilla movie, and a girl says the score Godzilla holds in Rotten Tomatoes is mediocre. You gotta be kidding me. We watched Godzilla some days before that incident, and she was nerding the fuck out when Godzilla was revealed, she loved that movie very much, and she even said it was her favorite King of Monsters movie to date… but now she thinks that this film is mediocre.

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 Source: Warner Bros.

Days before Godzilla was released, the film held a 90% score on Rotten Tomatoes, so people who see that score were saying this movie was really good. Now, it has 73%, which means it is considered an average movie.

grt

Many people in the movie blogging world say that Rotten Tomatoes is your friend, and it is. If you can’t spent $14 in a bad movie, maybe you should check which film is good and you will spend your money like a smart movie fan. That’s when Rotten Tomatoes saves the day.

I don’t know if people are just making up opinions to sound like movie critics, only to look like individuals who have a great taste in films. It’s just a score, like an exam, getting the 100% is hard. It’s pretty much imposible to find a certified-mega-fresh film in Rotten Tomatoes that holds a score of 100%.

You don’t have to agree with the movie critics, liking movies that nobody likes doesn’t make you dumb. Like I said before, no one is going to kill you because you hate a movie that everybody loves. Go to the movie theaters, and worry about your experience. Enjoy the movie.

So, do you change your opinion after you should a score on Rotten Tomatoes, you don’t care and just enjoy the movie? What does the critic consensus means to you?