Archive for July, 2007

Ultimate Hellsing Vol. 2: ****!

July 31, 2007

It's the name of the show!

Ultimate Hellsing Volume 2 is leagues better than the first.

It still looks like some frames of animation are missing and Seras Victoria is still nothing more than a goofy SD character – and still unfunny – but it’s got better action, an actual plot, better music, and way better villains than the first installment’s “AMEN!” barking lunatic. The first volume was obviously a ploy, a shortcut to this story which is odd and yes, a bit of a rip-off – again – because this volume is 15 minutes shorter and there is, AGAIN, only one single solitary episode on the disc.

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Shooter – Dick in Your Face

July 29, 2007

AIMBOT

Shooter is a political thriller action thing by Antoine Fuqua, director of the okay-ish Training Day and the shit-ish King Arthur. It stars Mark Wahlberg, who turned out to be pretty awesome in The Departed and in this he’s a whispery sniper coaxed out of hiding by the government to do… something… but ends up a patsy for the assassination of some African dude.

It’s all set up pretty well with Mark sniping f00ls alongside his doomed spotter buddy. There’s lots of nice exploding heads and, if this were a better movie that would be all there is. Lots and lots of Mark Wahlberg shooting people in the head. Snipers, by definiton, are awesome yet there is very little sniping in the movie. The middle of the flick drags on and on and on with Mark escaping the Feds, meeting up with his dead buddy’s cute widow, whom he rightfully doesn’t bed, and making friends with the one FBI guy who believes he’s innocent. There’s a chase scene and a rescue shoot-out during this long stretch that could have been may more exciting had Fuqua been interested at all in instilling EXCITEMENT rather than the heaviest left wing bitching I’ve seen in a genre movie this year yet.

Thought George Bush asking for a Ding Dong in Transformers was pushing it?

Oh man.

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The Legend of Zelda – Wind Waker: Haha, Nice Joke, Nintendo

July 20, 2007

WHEEEEEEEEEEEEEE

Are you familiar with The Legend of Zelda? If not, then I must assume you either:

  • A) are not a gamer
  • B) do not and have never owned a Nintendo console
  • C) are some kind of horrible Madden/Halo 2 sort of gamer
  • D) have no soul
  • E) some combination of the above

I mean, really. The Legend of Zelda is, uh, legendary among gamers. It’s possibly the holiest grail outside of the Mario franchise. A new Zelda game gets announced and people’s ears perk up. A new trailer is released and the Internet is deluged with opinionated superfans speculating where it might take place in the series’ timeline (don’t even start with me about that) and Tingle groupies demand to know if their favorite fairy man-child will show up.

Zelda‘s an almost instantly relatable experience among gamers. Remember the first time you pulled the Master Sword from its pedestal in the Temple of Time and became Adult Link? How about the first time you defeated Ganon? Or the first time you met the Princess Zelda? It’s in this way that I think it’s fair to liken Zelda to the Star Wars of video games. Hell, it can practically be a cult if you want it to be.

I say all this so the uninitiated among you can understand the shitstorm that was unleashed when Nintendo revealed its plans for the first Gamecube iteration of the venerated franchise. The Legend of Zelda: Wind Waker would be the first in the series to have a radical graphic departure from what the series had been known for. A switch to colorful, expressive, cel-shaded graphics made the group of Zelda fans hoping for a Zelda title more in the vein of the Gamecube tech demo released earlier nearly homicidal in their rage. Cries of “Zelda? More like Celda!” rang through the Internet for months. Even now, if you put your ear to your computer, you can hear the faint echoes of the fanboys gnashing their teeth at watching their pubescent fantasies of Link being in a “like, dark and shit” Zelda game being dashed against a rock by Nintendo. At the time.

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Harry Potter and the Test of Patience

July 15, 2007

What bugs me most about Order of the Phoenix is all the great actors that are in it, names like Gary Oldman, Alan Rickman, Brendan Gleeson, Emma Thompson, Maggie Smith, Robbie Coltrane, David Thewlis, Ralph Fiennes, all together in one movie, but no… Hagrid’s retarded CGI enhanced giant brother steals the most screentime. That alone should condemn the movie but it is an adaptation and it must adhere to the source, frustrating and bloated as it is. When those actors are onscreen the movie momentarily elevates above the pedestrian direction and bland orchestration of the soundtrack.

Enjoy Lupin while he lasts.

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Performance Review – Blue Dragon

July 15, 2007

Yeah, I just got an Xbox 360 Elite. It’s pretty sweet. I’ve been having a blast with it, playing Gays Gears of War, Lumines Live! and Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic (gamertag John Mora!). The really neat thing about the 360, though, is the thriving online marketplace, crammed with videos and games. One of the biggest recent touchdowns was a playable demo of FF refugee company Mistwalker’s hotly anticipated epic RPG, Blue Dragon. Is it worth the 1 GB of space on your hard drive and 60 minutes of your time?

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“It’s not a system. It’s a country.” – Live Free or Die Hard

July 15, 2007

Near the end of Live Free or Die Hard I noticed something peculiar. The baby-faced villain, played by Timothy Olphant, while talking of his master plan, says something about sending America “back to the Stone Age.” I pondered for a quick second, turned to a friend watching with me and asked “…Is this GoldenEye?”

He pondered for a second too, then turned to me. “Yeah… you’re right!”

Oh ho! Of course I am. |:3

Live Free or GOLDENEYE

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Grump Alert: REBUILD of Evangelion trailer

July 14, 2007

There it is. The first look at the new version of Neon Genesis Evangelion, with a new coat of lush visuals, hi-tech CG animation and warbling by Kingdom Hearts and Columbia University reject Utada Hikaru.

It looks spectacular.

It’s from the guys behind FLCL and Gunbuster 2 so spectacular animation shouldn’t be a surprise. But it is! Unit 01 and its prog knife, Tokyo-3 rising out of the ground, Shinji’s subtle new sneer, Rei’s hair moving in the wind, the 5th Angel, the sniper rifle, all in glorious new modern animation…!! It’s enough to get this old cynic excited by anime again.

Yeah, it’s yet another remake, my destiny is intertwined with them apparently, but it’s promised to be a new look at the Evangelion story, a much more accessible take on it. And it’s out soon in Japan, September 1st of this year, the first of four feature-length movies. The final one is going to be an all new conclusion.

I had to share. It’s on loop for me now. Maybe it will be for you? Be sure to spread the word – and the trailer – to all animation, sci-fi and depressing human drama fans you know!