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Topics - thecolorsblend

#1
Movies / The V/H/S Thread
Sat, 8 Jul 2023, 22:08
The V/H/S in question relates to the movie series: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/V/H/S

It has nothing to do with the VHS home video format... except for the fact that VHS cassette tapes do figure rather prominently into the films.

In any case, I really enjoy this horror franchise. Each film is an anthology that features multiple stories. I'm a sucker for anthology films. So, a franchise consisting (primarily) of anthologies works just fine for me.

Some of these stories have been spun off into feature-length standalone films of their own.

SiREN is one of them, which is based on "Amateur Night" from the first V/H/S film. Honestly, I think "Amateur Night" tells a much scarier and more enjoyable story.

Kids vs. Aliens is the other, which is based on "Slumber Party Alien Abduction" from V/H/S 2. I haven't seen Kids vs. Aliens yet, however, so I can't comment on its quality.

Anyway, are there any other V/H/S fans in the house? Or am I all alone on this one?
#2
Movies / The Indiana Jones Thread
Sun, 2 Jul 2023, 22:16
I find it interesting that there are six different horror movie-related threads on page 1 of this forum but I can't find an Indiana Jones thread.

As background, I should say that I've never been a big Indy fan. I like Raiders and Last Crusade as much as the next guy, I guess. But I never hitched my fanboy wagon to Indiana Jones. That's just the truth.

As a result, Crystal Skull is far less bothersome to me than it was to (apparently) everyone else. It had Indiana Jones swinging around on things, cliffhangers, narrow escapes, everything you want in an Indy film. Crystal Skull didn't bother me back in 2008 and it doesn't bother me now.

SN derailed me with his Insidious recommendation. But originally, the four movie set went on sale and I snapped it right up and had been planning to do an Indiana Jones marathon over this four day weekend here in the US.

Then the Insidious series came along and... well, here we are.

Still, I did watch a few clips from Raiders. Lots of action and excitement and stuff catching on fire. What's not to like?

Yes, I'm aware of Peter David's critique of Raiders that the movie ends the same way whether Indy is in it or not (which The Big Bang Theory later cribbed for itself). But since my investment in the series is so minimal, fine details like that don't matter to me. I just want to enjoy the action sequences, frankly.

Also, I'd like to throw a theory out there.

Arguably even more than Star Wars, Indiana Jones is STRAIGHT from the movie serials of the Thirties and Forties. I think audiences back in the Eighties picked up on that and enjoyed Indy as an homage to those old serials. And Indy touches on a lot of different movie serial subgenres: jungle, western, war, spy, fantasy (somewhat) and maybe others.

But by the time you get into the 2000's, the generation that grew up watching movie serials was either dead or in a retirement home. So, I can't help but wonder if one reason why Crystal Skull faced a tougher reception from the critics is because they simply don't have the same familiarity with the source material that their predecessors did.
#3
So, this is happening.

https://youtu.be/DKNjOwuBDbo

And honestly, based on what's in the trailer, this looks pretty legit. I don't like equating the Legion with the Justice League since they're so different from that. But hey, if it helps normie viewers get their heads around what the Legion is all about, then I guess I'm fine with it.

I'm a Legion fan from way back. So, anything that shines the spotlight on those characters is a-okay in my book.
#4
Other comics / DC Vertigo
Sun, 13 Nov 2022, 16:20
In search of something different, I've begun reading some of the old DC Vertigo comics. Moore's Swamp Thing (which was retroactively branded Vertigo), The Books Of Magic, Neil Gaiman's Sandman and some other stuff.

It's... pretty awesome, honestly.

They exist in the DC universe. But the thing that works for me is that you don't see the mainstream DC characters a whole lot. John Constantine, Tim Hunter, the Phantom Stranger, The Endless, etc., they exist in A DC universe. But not the same DC universe where Darkseid exists, if that's how you want to interpret it. I enjoy that because it's like the magic characters have their own corner of DC where they can exist without complicating factors like how (or if) magic-based characters like Captain Marvel (or "Shazam", in our current parlance) fit in.

If you haven't read this "Magicverse" (no idea what else to call it), it's definitely worth checking out.
#5
Batman: TAS (1992 - 1995) / RIP Kevin Conroy
Fri, 11 Nov 2022, 16:58
https://gizmodo.com/kevin-conroy-dead-obituary-batman-dc-comics-rip-1849772917

QuoteKevin Conroy—the actor who became Batman for generations of fans when he voiced the Dark Knight in the iconic Batman: The Animated Series and Justice League cartoons, as well as a plethora of video games, including the Batman Arkham franchise—has died. He was 66.

First reports of Conroy's passing, after a brief battle with cancer, came from Diane Pershing, who played Poison Ivy opposite Conroy in the legendary Batman: The Animated Series, before being confirmed by Warner Bros. Animation.
#6
Misc Comics / RIP Alan Grant
Thu, 21 Jul 2022, 16:31
Noted LOBO, BATMAN and DETECTIVE COMICS writer Alan Grant has passed away.

https://bleedingcool.com/comics/alan-grant-comics-legend-behind-judge-dredd-lobo-has-died-aged-73
#7
SN got this ball rolling with:

Quote from: Silver Nemesis on Mon, 11 Apr  2022, 21:44This discussion has got me thinking about how I'd handle Superman in a self-contained movie trilogy. I've got a lot of ideas on that front, but such a discussion is probably best saved for a new thread.

So, here we go. Honestly, there are a lot of different directions I could go with this. Part of me wants to bypass SuperMAN entirely and do a Young SuperBOY franchise. But... no.

Rather, I think the best way to go for the purposes of re-reestablishing Superman on film would be SuperMAN trilogy. My basic idea would be to somewhat incorporate all major eras of Superman into my trilogy.

-- The Obvious Stuff
Krypton: This is the Flash Gordonesque World Of Tomorrow. I'd want to give it a 1930's sci-fi serial aesthetic. My basic idea is that Krypton LOOKS all advanced and utopian. But appearances are deceiving and the futuristic flash of Krypton masks a very deep social rot. So much so, that it Jor-El is risking his life in stating the obvious: "Fellow scientists, Krypton is doomed!"

Smallville: The last innocent place on Earth. The embodiment of Small Town, USA. Children respect their elders, the entire town closes at 9:00 every night and even Archie Comics aren't as wholesome as this place.

Metropolis: Imagine, if you will, a Chicago that was never swallowed up in corruption. Yeah, Metropolis has its fair share of problems. But it's not Gotham City and that needs to be apparent at a glance. I harp on Chicago since Kansas is already in the Midwest and I think Clark would naturally gravitate to a major city in the Midwest.

-- Superman
I rather like the idea of Superman being an ongoing series of transformations. The concept I'll be working with is that Superman's powers gradually change and transform his senses. In turn, these changes to his senses will alter his consciousness.

-- The Movies
Movie 01, The Golden Age: To start with, I would want the first movie to show Superman becoming Superman. But a VERY limited form of Superman. Back when Superman first debuted, his powerset was pretty limited. He had the strength of, say, 100 men. His skin was highly durable but he himself remarked that an exploding shell would've harmed him and another time he said that a runaway train would've killed him. This Superman is NOT invincible.

He also can't fly. He can jump LAMF. But he can't fly for most of the first movie. A transformation in his powers will enable him to fly near the end of the movie.

The basic plot will be that this Golden Age tier Superman has to discover his true origins while overcoming Lex Luthor (the renegade scientist operating in secret) and Metallo. I like the idea that Superman views his alien origins in a negative way while he fights villains who use radioactive pieces of his home world to poison him.

I want Superman's uniform in this movie to be very primitive. It should look recognizable as Superman. But it should still maintain a homemade look. Because this version of Superman is a social crusader. He uses Superman as a public persona to call attention to corruption and crime and so forth. But he doesn't take the "Superman" identity too seriously. He simply believes that he has a responsibility to Metropolis. Picture an all-cotton version of the Fleischer Superman outfit and that's more or less what I had in mind for the outfit in this movie.

Movie 02, Post-Crisis: Following the transformation from the last movie, this is a very John Byrne Superman. The big issue for Clark in this movie relates to his relationship with Lois (will they, won't they?) while Superman has to contend with Lex Luthor (the CEO of Lexcorp) and Bizarro.

The conflict has to be Clark's desire to lead an ordinary life considering his responsibilities as Superman. Clark is having success in his career, he and Lois have a nice little thing going and I think it makes sense that Clark would enjoy those things. But his duties as Superman are at least as important to him as Clark's stuff. His struggle comes down to finding equilibrium in those things. Basically, the same work/life balance thing that a lot of people struggle with.

A big part of this struggle is Superman's transformation in the previous film. Now, he can fly, has his vision powers, is more invulnerable than he was before, basically he's got all of the John Byrne era of Superman's abilities. He knows he CAN do more so to him, that means he SHOULD do more. But what is the price for that? What sacrifices might Clark have to make in order for Superman to be everything that he CAN be? Yes, Superman now realizes that he has a responsibility to the ENTIRE WORLD. But what responsibilities does Superman have to Clark Kent?

Superman has an object lesson in how much good he can do in comparison to Bizarro. And clearly, Lex isn't slowing down either.

Superman undergoes another transformation in this movie. After all these decades of absorbing solar radiation, Superman's body mutates in this film, radically expanding his powers, consciousness, etc. This transformation pretty much settles the Clark/Superman dichotomy once and for all.

His outfit in this movie should look a lot more polished than the last movie. He's at peace now with his alien heritage and his uniform should reflect that. But it should still have certain limitations. Superman is more powerful now following his transformation from the last movie. But he still wears a fabric outfit. I want to use the John Byrne idea of Superman's capes constantly getting destroyed while his bodysuit is unscathed because it's skin tight. But it should still have a bit of a homemade quality to it. Basically, picture Dean Cain's outfit from the first few episodes of Lois & Clark and that's what I have in mind here.

Movie 03, Silver Age: After the last movie's transformation, Superman is now SUPERMAN. His consciousness has been so radically transformed at this point that he can scarcely relate to who he was back in the beginning. He can hear a frog fart in Fiji. He sees spectrums of light that we haven't discovered yet. He can taste individual air molecules. So, at this point, let's skip this idea that there's anything even remotely human about Superman anymore.

That means there's no room in his life anymore for Lois. He loves her, yes. But with his newly expanded powers, there's virtually no limit to what Superman can achieve. And those duties are so important that it just doesn't make sense to prioritize Clark Kent's private life as even remotely as important as Superman's duties.

Superman's outfit should abandon any semblance of a homemade aesthetic in this movie. By all means, make it all look all Hollywood designy. Superman now has a 4-digit IQ and his expanded intelligence has allowed him to create an indestructible suit. Imagine a Superman suit with a texture to it similar to Cavill's outfit and that's what I had in mind here.

Superman's big struggle in this movie should be not getting so lost in the big picture that he forgets individual people. This conflict will be personified by President Luthor secretly working with Brainiac to take Superman out. Of course, that goes bad when Brainiac breaks his deal with Lex and attempts to shrink and harvest the city of Metropolis.

This leads to Superman's final transformation: the Grant Morrison Sun God. The only way Superman can defeat and turn Brainiac back is by transcending a mortal form entirely. This is where all the previous lessons he's learned come into play. Yes, he's an alien but there's nothing wrong with that (from Movie 01) and yes, his responsibilities as Superman are important (from Movie 02). But good is not an abstract ideal to be mindlessly pursued no matter the cost. Rather, good is to work for the benefit of LIFE.

And with Superman's latest transformation, he now realizes that he can preserve, protect and defend life across the entire galaxy. Possibly even into other dimensions.

This is the "death" of Superman, in a way. But in another way, it's merely the next stage of his evolution. And he's finally ready to take that next step. He "leaves" Earth, knowing that some part of his energy and consciousness will ALWAYS be here to help those in need.

But it's time now for him to take a far more galactic approach to his mission. Which will always be the same: truth, justice and the American way.
#8
Movies / Scream Franchise
Sat, 19 Mar 2022, 19:58
Poked around a bit before starting this thread. Could've sworn we had at least one thread about at least one of the Scream movies. But apparently we don't.

So, even tho I'm not fond of starting new threads (as my posting history probably demonstrates), it seems we need a Scream thread.

Why? Because I just watched Scream (2022). And... meh.

[Spoilers]
For starters, there's never been a Scream sequel that remotely approaches the original. That has been my contention since Scream 2 and nothing has changed in the intervening years. The charm and sophistication of the first movie isn't exactly a repeatable thing. Scream 2022 is part of the "proud" tradition of Scream sequels that don't measure up to the original. The glass ceiling remains unbroken.

Something else? Look at the Kill Count on this movie some time. Vince, Judy, Wes, Generic Security Guard, Dewey, Liv, Richie and Amber. Golly, what do they all have in common? They're all white! The alphabet soup characters may take their bumps and bruises. But they all pull through in the end. The whities tho? Not so lucky. Now, Liv is borderline, admittedly. She's debatable. But otherwise, the rest of the victims are all white bread.

Separately, as we all know, Scream movies are part-slasher and part-commentary. The first movie comments on slashers, the second comments on sequels, the third comments on trilogies, the fourth comments on reboots/remakes and the fifth... comments on fandom.

This is the part that bugs me the most. The "clever" Hollywood trick of putting the other side's talking points into the mouths of villains (as if that magically refutes something) is employed here.

Honestly, why? It's generally known that Scream fans adore the original but tend to have mixed opinions about the sequels. But, afaik, no significant number of Scream fans have ever gone on the warpath about it. They prefer the first movie and that's that. So, Scream 2022's attack on fandom is completely uncalled for.

I wouldn't have even posted about this. I would've just watched the movie, probably thought "Meh, not as good as the original, but still decent" and left it at that. But the swipes at fans provoked me, I guess. Hence, starting this thread.

Would Wes Craven have allowed the criticism of the fans? Maybe. But maybe not. His career was due in no small part to fan loyalty. At a minimum, I don't think he would've allowed the fans to get broadsided as badly as they did in this movie. A passing joke, maybe. Maybe. But not a go-for-the-jugular attack.

In the end, I don't recommend watching this movie if you're ANY kind of fan. Which is unfortunate because there are some pretty effective moments going on here. Dewey's death, Skeet Ulrich as "Billy Loomis", Sam going berserk on Richie, Richie and Amber's sick and twisted relationship, etc. There ARE good ideas going on here.

But the good just plain doesn't outweigh the bad.
#9
General Bat-chat / 31- Rob Zombie Movie
Sat, 5 Mar 2022, 03:54
Just watched 31, the Rob Zombie movie. Not a great movie. And it kind of serves as proof that Rob Zombie's love for The Texas Chainsaw Massacre may very well influence everything he ever does.

Still, one thing that stood out to me was the character of Doom-Head. Doom-Head is a very Joker-like character. Well, about as Joker-like as Zombie can probably manage.



Doom-Head has a bit of a whimsical side and he obviously enjoys murder beyond just the money he's getting paid. Plus, the white face paint and the bloody lips all seem like kind of obvious Joker visuals. Also, Doom-Head's opening monologue directly references clowns.

No idea if any of this was completely intentional. But between Doom-Head's lack of a civilian name and his affection for knives and blades, I'd be shocked if Ledger's Joker wasn't somewhere in Zombie's head when he created the Doom-Head character.

Anyway.
#10
Comic Film & TV / Dexter: New Blood
Sun, 10 Oct 2021, 05:41
Not seeing any other threads related to Dexter. But I didn't do a super intensive search.

Anyway, so Dexter: New Blood is set to premiere on November 07, 2021. Figured this thread could be as good of a place as any for Dexter discussion.

Also, "reboot" has a specific meaning. And it looks like someone involved with the marketing for Dexter: New Blood is well aware. Because it's pretty rare to see Dexter: New Blood being referred to as a "reboot". More frequently, it's called a revival. Because that's what it is. It's not a reboot. And it's getting a little annoying to see Boomer and Gen X media personalities misuse the word "reboot" all the time.
#11
For some reason, Bleeding Cool is the only outlet talking about this at the moment. So, unfortunately, the article is written in Rich Johnston's annoying style.

https://bleedingcool.com/comics/marvel-could-lose-copyright-over-spider-man-and-doctor-strange

Basically, it sounds a lot like the Siegel estate's shtick with the Superman copyright. That ended up falling through. But this stuff with Spider-Man and Dr. Strange might not. I'm no attorney. But the ownership of those characters has never been challenged in court. Siegel and Shuster repeatedly duked it out with DC Comics (and DC's predecessor companies) for decades so it was a pretty messy legal quagmire.

Spider-Man and Dr. Strange tho are relatively "cleaner". I'm not aware of any previous legal rulings on Spider-Man and Dr. Strange. So, Ditko's heir might have something here.

Considering how much Ditko's heir stands to gain, the results cannot be overemphasized. The materials introduced in Amazing Fantasy #15 include Spider-Man, Peter Parker, Aunt May, Uncle Ben, Flash Thompson, the burglar, Crusher Hogan and probably other stuff I'm forgetting. I'm less familiar with Dr. Strange so I can't say for sure there.

This is gigantic. And I reiterate, for some reason only Bleeding Cool is talking about it.
#12
Tales From The Crypt wasn't a show I paid a whole lot of attention to back when it was on TV. But as I matured in my comic book fandom, obviously it was only a matter of time until I tumbled onto EC Comics. Thus, Tales From The Crypt.

Imagine my surprise to discover that Tales From The Crypt isn't available on any streaming service. Not even HBO Max! Apparently, there's some complicated rights issues going on with it to where it's just not possible to make the show available on streaming, iTunes or wherever else. I bought the first season when it was (briefly) available on iTunes in January 2019. So, I guess it wasn't known to be a problem then. But I felt like watching some second season stuff and this show is nowhere to be found (legitimately) on the Internet.

Too bad, rly. Because as an anthology series, it offered a vehicle for Hollywood A-listers of that time to go outside their usual genres and do something different in a fairly creative but mostly low-risk kind of way. I'm not at all surprised that the show was able to attract such high levels of talent for its first few seasons.

Anyway. Just felt like venting a little bit.
#13
Other comics / Komics-Live RIP
Thu, 10 Jun 2021, 04:33
I've been unable to reach Komics-Live (komics-live.com) for the past few days. At this point, I guess it's safe to say the site is gone and it's never coming back.

It's hard to think of a worse indictment of the comic book industry in 2021 than the death of a website that many people used for the express purpose of pirating comics. When even the illegal market can't survive anymore because of reader apathy, that's when you know you've lost.

I tumbled onto Komics-Live probably around 2006 or 2007. Around there. At that time, fans gave a damn about comic books. There was discussion, speculation, arguments (because it's comic fans on the Internet) and, yes, links to illicit downloads.

For the record (and this is not CYA), I only downloaded stuff for which I owned paper copies. I am not a thief and I will not take something for nothing. I buy it fairly or I skip it. Period. And so, Komics-Live was pretty handy for finding digital backups of stuff. And let's not ignore the obvious, some of the discussions could get pretty fun.

But then the malaise set in. Komics-Live basically became largely inactive a few years ago. Fans finally had enough, I guess. Some hardliners tried to keep the discussions going. But it was pretty obvious that nobody's heart was in it anymore. It comes down to left wing politics, like everything else. Fans were either tired of being subjected to it or else they were tired of listening to others being tired of being subjected to it. Even the people who were probably friendly to left wing politics were sick to death of talking about it.

For me, what rly tells the tale is how relatively inactive the download section became. People just stopped scanning and posting links for downloading new comics. Or old comics. Or any comics at all. Why bother, right? This thing will either get rebooted or retconned in two years anyway. Forget about it.

Like I say, this was the dark, shady section of Komics-Live. It was a place for honest people like me to obtain backups of stuff we bought legitimately. By that same token, it was also a place for dishonest people to get a lot of free stuff.

But after a while, even unscrupulous people just stopped seeing the value proposition in comics anymore.

Guys, when your industry isn't attracting thieves anymore (esp thieves facing literally zero consequences for ripping you off), you're in deep trouble. The fact that the illegal stuff died out years ago is not a good sign, believe it or not. The fact that Komics-Live itself is now toast is an even worse sign.

Possibly worst of all is that Komics-Live has been gone for a few days now but, as far as I can tell, I'm the only person reacting to it anywhere online. The premiere comic book download site is gone and, apparently, no one besides me cares.

Anybody who thinks the comic book industry is facing a shiny, happy future is living in a dream world.
#14
General Bat-chat / Wayne Manor
Sun, 14 Feb 2021, 21:20
As a fan, one thing I've always loved about the Batman mythos is Wayne Manor. In its own weird way, I've always kind of considered Wayne Manor to be a silent member of the Wayne family.

And yet, one thing that I've kind of had my fill of is Wayne Manor as we've seen it in the live action films to date. I love English gothic architecture as much as (if not more than) the next guy. But how many times do you need to see variations on essentially the same thing?



In each of those films, Wayne Manor seems to be a foreboding, borderline haunted house. It's useful for symbolizing the darkness dominating Bruce's inner world. It's effective. But I don't think that's the only way to skin the cat.

Frankly, everything about Bruce Wayne The Public Figure is basically a lie. He's not who he pretends to be. Batman is who he is underneath all that. And when Batman pretends to be Bruce Wayne The Public Figure, he has to convey a certain image. He goes far out of his way to be underestimated.

If you ask me, Wayne Manor needs to contribute to Bruce Wayne The Public Figure's camouflage. Visitors and the public need to take one look at Wayne Manor and see a stuffed, pompous wannabe's house. A male Paris Hilton who LARPs as a corporate titan but is in fact just a vacuous, womanizing, effete dilettante.

On that basis, it's high time for the movies to give Wayne Manor a major league face lift and make it look a lot more like a modern luxury mansion.







Don't take the images above too literally. Obviously, there are no palm trees on Wayne Manor grounds and the estate is not located on a cliff face.

But still, those styles of mansions are how Wayne Manor should look these days. Superficially, there should be no reason to look at Wayne Manor and think Bruce Wayne The Public Figure has anything to hide. If anything, this guy flaunts his wealth and his status. He wears it all openly. Nothing is concealed, as far as most people are concerned.

The opulence, the gigantic pool, the glass walls, the hot cars, they should all serve a purpose: Namely, making the world think that what you see is what you get when it comes to Bruce Wayne The Public Figure.

But it's an all act. Bruce Wayne The Public Figure might host a lavish party on his estate, Bruce Wayne The Public Figure might disappear inside the house in the middle of the party, Bruce Wayne The Public Figure enters his study, Bruce Wayne The Public Figure disappears, Maskless Batman flips a switch, a panel opens in the wall, he descends some stairs and it's masked Batman down there in the Batcave, his guests above none the wiser. Batman zooms into the night, a backyard full of alibis barely even noticing that Bruce Wayne The Public Figure is nowhere around.

This isn't a knock against Burton, Schumacher, Nolan, Snyder or Reeves. I'm just saying I'm ready for a new aesthetic with Wayne Manor. I welcome your input.
#15
I'm working on a project for a client that involves, among other things, some rather unusual security features. As part of my due diligence and research, I tumbled onto this website: https://hiddenpassageway.com

The video on the main page there tells me that somebody in that company is obviously a Batman fan. Blink and you'll miss it but there's a pretty clear reference to a certain Batman property in the demo video.

If we're speaking freely here, I honestly don't know how you could handle custom home/office security without at least a passing fandom for Batman.
#16
Movies / Themes Of Joel Schumacher Films
Mon, 8 Feb 2021, 02:16
Quote from: Silver Nemesis on Thu, 14 Jan  2021, 15:50Top marks, colors. Killer Moth's an appropriately colourful choice of villain, and your storyline offers a good way of introducing Batwoman while circumventing the problem of her non-relation to the Schumacher Batgirl. You also continued the Schumacher trend of ignoring the love interest (Julie) from the preceding movie, while the subplot about Dick and Barbara flying the coop, and Alfred retiring, would continue the family themes from the previous two films.
It's rly the bolded part that stood out to me. This part of SN's post rly got me thinking about Schumacher's body of work.

Now, I've always been inclined to the belief that some filmmakers have certain themes that they find irresistible. And while I'm no expert on Schumacher's filmography, issues of family (real or adopted) seem to be ideas that he was interested in playing with. Specifically, the struggle to build (or rebuild) one's family. In Schumacher's films, the attempt to create/reconcile with family isn't always successful. But it does seem to always be meaningful.

Obviously, those are crucial elements of BF and B&R. But you even see it in some of his other films. For everything else we could say about D-FENS, he was ultimately trying to make it to his daughter's birthday part and, hopefully in the bargain, reconnect and reunite with his wife.

In The Lost Boys, Lucy moved her sons to Santa Carla from Phoenix to live with her father. For his own part, Max wanted brothers and a mother for his own adopted "boys".

In The Client, Mark Sway's relationship with his mother is rly the spine of his character. Mark doesn't make much sense unto himself if you don't understand that there's nothing he won't do for his family in general and his mother in particular. If I'm right about the theme of (re)building family, then that aspect of Grisham's novel probably greatly appealed to Schumacher.

With something like Flatliners, it gets harder because, yeah, Rachel's grief over her father's suicide is a major issue for her but it's not rly THE issue of the film. But it does motivate her to do what she does in the film. So hmm.

But with Tigerland, the family thing comes back up with Roland.

Ditto Phone Booth, where Stu has to be forced literally at gunpoint to confess his two-timing ways to his wife.

Where does this come from? Schumacher lost his father when he was 4 and then lost his mother when he was about 25 or 26, which is relatively young to be fully orphaned. Add to that, I can't find any indication that he had brothers or sisters. On that basis, it's easier to see his point of view. In the same way that a lot of Spielberg's work is characterized by the value of marriage (and the pain of divorce) or Tim Burton's earlier work is characterized by lonely outsiders who struggle with mainstream society, I think I can see where the attempt/failure to (re)build family might hit home for Schumacher.

Maybe everyone else here was well aware of Schumacher's fondness for this theme. But until SN's post, I never gave it much thought. So I figured I'd throw all this out there and see what comes back to me.
#17
https://www.liveabout.com/angry-reactions-to-the-casting-of-michael-keaton-as-batman-327068

Two surprising names popped up. One was comic book writer Beau Smith, back before he was a comic book writer.

The other? Michael Uslan!
#18
Take this with as many grains of salt as you see fit. But sources say Nolan is coming back for another Batman film.

https://www.giantfreakinrobot.com/ent/exclusive-christopher-nolan-batman.html

QuoteI've heard from one of my sources that after the huge failure of Tenet Christopher Nolan is considering returning to direct another Batman movie and Nolan wants nothing to do with Ben Affleck. So Affleck could be out as part of Warner Bros. broader plan to lure Nolan back into the world of making Batman movies.

Christopher Nolan directed three Batman movies for Warner Bros. The final two movies in his Batman trilogy. The last two, The Dark Knight and The Dark Knight Rises, are the two top grossing Warner Bros movies (domestically) of all time. Warner Bros has always wanted Christopher Nolan involved in the future of their superhero franchises, but he has always said no.

Now though, with movie theaters dying and Tenet flopping, word is that Nolan's stance on doing more Batman has softened and he's open to new ideas. My source (the same source that made Giant Freakin Robot the first outlet anywhere to break the news that Wonder Woman 1984 would release on streaming) tells me Christopher Nolan is actually considering it. In the past the auteur has flatly rejected the idea of returning to Batman, however the very public failure of Tenet apparently rocked him to the core as a director, and he's far more open to the idea of returning to the world Batman than he has ever been in the past.

Which Batman movie Christopher Nolan might direct is unknown. Christopher Nolan's grounded Batman films, unlike the more recent Zack Snyder movies, are a better fit alongside more recent successes like Joker. Joker, by the way, sits just below Christopher Nolan's Batman movies on the list of Warner Bros. top-grossing movies of all time.

For Warner Bros. this is a direction that obviously makes a lot of sense. And for Christopher Nolan, whose box office grosses have been declining steadily since he wrapped up The Dark Knight Rises, it could be just the shot in the arm his career needs.
There are many things that don't add up here.

For starters, Nolan has said again and again that TDKRises wraps up his story. Finito, no mas. Even if he was inclined to do more (I'll comment on that in a sec), he knows he'd be eating a lot of crow. He doesn't strike me as the kind of guy who would enjoy the eat-crow click-bait stories that would surely ensue if he comes back to Batman.

Related to that, TDKRises ended on a kind of ambiguous note. Me, I think Bruce Wayne died in that explosion and the stuff from Gordon, Alfred and Blake's point of view is all wish-fulfillment. "Wouldn't it be great if he was still alive somehow?" Creating a new Batman movie will probably necessarily require clarification on Bruce's fate that Nolan has always seemed content to let audiences decide for themselves.

Second, unlike before, he's got competition now. There's Affleck, probably Keaton and definitely Pattinson. His Batman won't stand alone. Word 'round the watercooler is that Nolan had a hand in cancelling Justice League: Mortal. Why? Because it included Batman. And Nolan wanted moviegoers to associate Batman with him. How true is that? We'll never know. Because everybody who does know has every conceivable reason to keep his mouth shut. But personally, I always found it easy to believe that, at a minimum, Nolan was miffed about the possibility of another big screen Batman detracting from his own work.

Third, Nolan spent most of last week telling WB off. It would be quite odd for him to follow that up by developing a new Batman movie. Esp when he knows for a fact that any new Batman movie he makes is very likely to wind up on HBO Max, which I can't imagine he'd be open to.

Maybe I'm wrong but I'd be shocked and awed if Nolan ever comes back to Batman.
#19
Movies / The Films Of David Fincher
Fri, 27 Nov 2020, 03:18
I guess maybe we can put this down to SN's Alien thread and my at best passive interest in Alien 3. But whatever the reason, I've been making my way through the films of David Fincher lately. I can't fully explain why other than I've had a bit of a yen to watch some of his movies.

As with any filmmaker, I'll say that I enjoy some of Fincher's films more than others. While I have not worked my way through his entire filmography, I have at this point taken in a fair number of his movies. And overall, I rather enjoy them.

Probably my favorite is Zodiac. I've had a passing interest in the Zodiac case for a pretty long time now because, as serial killers go, I find the whole thing strangely fascinating. To this day, it's mind boggling to think that the killer was never arrested and put on trial. But with the film Zodiac, the case itself is only part of the allure. The cast really makes this film. It is officially no longer clever to point out all the MCU connections this movie has so I won't do that.

Rather, I'll just say that each actor gives a bravura performance. For me, this is what film should be. This is the kind of movie I want to watch rn.

At this point, Fincher has directed a lot of films and there's a lot to say there. But I'm hoping some of you have a few thoughts you want to kick in.
#20
Movies / Rambo Film Series Thread
Sat, 14 Nov 2020, 04:30
This is meant to be about anything/everything to do with Rambo, either the character, the film series or whatever else. Now, I realize a certain level of political commentary is woven into the movies and so it's kind of unavoidable. But at the same time, let's try keeping things reasonable with any discussion that might ensue.

What I tell myself is that I don't know if it's possible to save the world. But if it's possible to save the world, it's not my job to save the world. But if it's my job to save the world, I won't save the world by posting a bunch of stupid political bs on the Internet. And neither will you.

Anyway, so I rewatched First Blood tonight. The reason First Blood plays for me better than any of the sequels is because John has a pretty straight forward set of issues. He was plucked up out of nowhere, taught to fight and kill and survive, sent off into a pointless war that he wasn't allowed to win, got booed when he came home and then got abandoned as he tried reentering civilian life. One day, one too many people mouth off to him and he snaps.

Everything that happens in First Blood comes from those simple facts.

John is not presented as a hero so much as the product of a sick society with a fixation on war. John lashes out against a society that would turn men into killers and killers into useless pathetic drifters. The initial fight in the police station was obviously John getting triggered by the worst case of PTSD I've ever seen. But after that episode ends, he's back in his "right" mind. He knows what he's doing and he doesn't let up.

But at the same time, John isn't above showing mercy. He could've easily killed all of the deputies who pursued him into the woods. But he lets them go to prove a point. Teasle (Brian Dennehy) is ultimately the one who escalates the situation into a full blown crisis. John offers Teasle the last miniscule sliver of mercy he has left. And he utterly wastes it.

There's a school of thought that Vietnam was such a bizarre, insane, tragic episode in America's history that Americans needed a lot of years to process the full magnitude of its horror. Things like First Blood, Apocalypse Now and other things are symptoms of America trying (and arguably failing) to make sense of the nonsensical.

Me, well, as a Millennial, Vietnam doesn't have the same truck with me that it does previous generations. For that reason, I prefer to rise above the weeds a bit and process First Blood as a more general Man Against Society conflict. A very flawed and damaged man. First Blood plays for me for generally the same reason Falling Down does; they're both dense stories about a man at the end of his rope who finally gets pushed over the edge and lashes out. These are not heroic, honorable men. And yet, it's difficult to not have some kind of sympathy for them.

All of this is a long way of saying that First Blood has a heart and a purpose that the sequels just plain lack or, hell, don't even aspire to.

The older I get, the less use I seem to have for sequels. Not for the first time I find myself thinking that First Blood is better off as a one-and-done story rather than the opening salvo of an ongoing film series.

That's not to say that the sequels don't have merit. There are some good ideas going on there. But in First Blood, the bullets and the explosions come from a place of anger, conflict, disgust and, finally, personal vengeance. Whereas, in the sequels, the carnage is meant to be part of the marketing appeal. That's not a bad thing but it's also not really what First Blood was up to in showing John basically singlehandedly take down a small town all by himself.

Anyway.