Monday, May 20, 2013


WARNING! MASSIVE SPOILERS AHEAD! I love these new Star Trek re-imagining/alternate time line films!  With that being said, the newest film STAR TREK INTO DARKNESS is guilty of some lazy insulting fan service pandering.  First off, the big secret reveal of the villain  failed miserably. Benedict Cumberbatch is an amazing actor and played an awesome bad guy; however, once it's revealed he is Kahn and not “John Harrison” the character quickly becomes insulting lip service to fans. Very anti-climatic if you ask me.

For a moment after this "shocking" reveal, I thought to myself that director J.J. is better than this.  I am of the opinion that J.J. Abrams more than likely has the clout to have final cut.  This Khan business smells like it's straight from corporate if you ask me.  Paramount probably gave J.J and his writing team creative control with the exception of one thing, that the sequel must deal with Khan.  The build up and months of speculation on who exactly the villain of STAR TREK INTO DARKNESS was going to be just fell flat.

With what Cumberbatch brings to the character John Harrison could have been a interesting addition to the rogues gallery for the parallel Star Trek universe, but instead we now have a pointless re imagined Kahn. The marketing department should look at how IRON MAN 3 kept it's "big reveal" under wraps when promotion gets under way for Star Trek 3.

Trust me, I really liked this movie just let me get one other thing off my chest.

So with Kahn being the big bad of STAR TREK INTO DARKNESS one would assume the movie is going to turn into a STAR TREK II: THE WRATH OF KAHN remake right?  Sort of. You see, the new film is more of a re imaging of the episode 'Space Seed' from the original series than it is a remake of STAR TREK II: THE WRATH OF KAHN. With the exception of some similar dialogue and scenes, one scene in particular that takes advantage of the parallel universe juxtaposition by switching roles in a death. It was actually a great scene and very moving, but took it to far by giving Spock the famous Kahn yell. I'll admit this is all sounding nit picky and to be honest it is and I'm normally not that kind of movie watcher. These two issues just frustrate me as being lazy and will suffice for Johnny-come-lately geek is sheik “movie geeks”. Case in point, the audience went way too crazy excited when John Harrison revealed he was Kahn. Really? Must be the same people that think EMPIRE STRIKES BACK is the most boringest one?

  The crew of the U.S.S Enterprise return after a daring mission saving an alien race from a volcano that would wipe them out. The mission did not go as planed. They save the alien race but not without breaking the Prime Directive. Captain Kirk looses the Enterprise and ordered back to Starfleet Academy. First officer Spock is reassigned to another ship. Days later San Fransisco/Starfleet HQ falls victim to a terrorist bombing. Head Starfleet personnel hold a meeting to find out who is responsible. Their proof leads them to a member of some secret black ops squad (I'm not 100% on that) that goes by the name of John Harrison who is hiding out on the Klingon home world Kronos . Out of revenge Kirk volunteers to take the Enterprise and her crew to go get this murderous bastard. Starfleet accepts this request but are they telling Kirk and his crew everything? Will Kirk take the high road and do the right thing even if it costs him something? With a moderate recommendation I say go see STAR TREK INTO DARKNESS to find out!

Like a good sequel it jumps right into the action and doesn't stop. I forgot how much I have missed these characters so it was fun to see J.J. and his team give them another fun and exciting adventure. This alternate time line Star Trek really caters to me, the Star Wars kid.

With J.J. Abrams directing the new Star Wars movie, what is to become of STAR TREK 3? How far are they going to go with the alternate time line? Before they run it into the ground I'd be happy with one epic feature film exploring the five year mission. They could toy with time travel to correct the alternate time line? I love what Abrams has done with breathing new life into the film franchise but without going completely backwards maybe it's time to hire a director that loves Star Trek like J.J. Loves Star Wars!

Saturday, May 4, 2013


Summer movie season 2013 has officially begun with the beginning of Marvel's Phase Two with IRON MAN 3!

To kick off this “new chapter” of the Marvel cinematic universe's most popular character we welcome director Shane Black (KISS,KISS BANG,BANG). Black and Robert Downey Jr. are reunited and it's awesome. With screenwriter credits that include action classics such as LETHAL WEAPON and THE LAST BOY SCOUT, Shane Black is the exact guy you'd want on the Marvel team of film making talent. His contribution feels like whenever a comic book publisher would hire a new talented creative team for your favorite super hero.

I'm babbling on about Shane Black; to sum it up, he made a Lethal Weapon comic book movie.  That my friends is super cool! Not only that but ever since it's been known that Robert Downey Jr. may hang up the suit of armor sooner than later, I've made the comment that Iron Man is sort of like the 'James Bond' of this cinematic universe. Who will play the character next? Just like the Bond films. During the sweet looking end credits they had this 'Iron Man is a secret agent film from the 70's type vibe. I sat there and thought the movie did have a oo7 adventure vibe to it. Just another cool thought!

Tony Stark has never been the same since The Avengers saved New York City from nuclear fallout and planet Earth from alien domination.  He can't sleep and he also suffers panic attacks.  Stark is a natural born tinkerer.  Since he cannot sleep he builds Iron Man suits.  He's built a lot of them. Forty-two I think?  Innovation is also something Tony Stark is good at.  Besides crafting armor he has been trying to integrate some new technology called Extremis. Something he's been toying with every since being introduced to it by the lovely Maya Hanson back in 1999 at a Sweden science convention. This new tech has given Tony the ability to have a mental connection to his armor.

Another person Tony met at the convention was Aldrich Killian who later partnered up with Miss Maya Hanson and later perfected the Extremis virus. Fast forward to today where Aldrich makes a visit to Stark Industries selling the idea of the new and improved Extremis technology to Pepper Potts as the future in Weapons & Defense. Stark Industries is not interested in something that can easily get into the wrong hands.

Super heroes rarely have any time off. The latest threat to the world is a terrorist who calls himself The Mandarin. The Mandarin hates America and wants to destroy it with no mercy. One day the terror comes to the doorstep of Tony Stark when a terrorist attack almost takes the life of Happy Hogan, his close friend and former bodyguard.

After a personal threat from Tony. the Mandarin accepts the invitation by sending some rockets to his house via helicopter.

Presumed dead, Tony now has the low profile to find out what The Mandarin is really up to and stop him once and for all. With the armor at less the 5% power Tony must figure out how to stop the madman incognito using his wits and mechanical skills.

Will Iron Man stop The Mandarin before he kills the President of the United States of America? You'll have to see for yourself because I don't want to spoil the fun.

The way the film handles The Mandarin I'm a little unsure about. I remember an interview awhile back after the second film where director Jon Favreau said the third movie will deal with Iron Man's arch nemesis The Mandarin. Now in the comic books this character uses black arts and mystical powers. That seems odd to translate for the cinematic Iron Man. Mystical villains fit better in a Thor film one would think. But after introducing Thanos to the cinematic universe at the end of MARVEL'S THE AVENGERS all is possible in these films now.

The filmmakers of IRON MAN 3 decided not to make The Mandarin mystical which as made hard core comic geeks outraged. Not me. I liked what they did to the character just fine. Why did some people refer to him as The Master and not Mandarin? You'll have to see the movie to know what I'm talking about. Maybe we haven't seen the last of “The Mandarin” just yet?

IRON MAN 3 is the best one yet. It's also a nice complete trilogy of films. We probably don't need another one. Who am I kidding. This one is already making a killing in worldwide box office numbers!

For the next one I think they've set things up nicely for an 'Armor Wars' story arc.

Wednesday, May 1, 2013


Does IRON MAN 2 suck?  The film does have some issues but to say it sucks I think is a tad harsh.  Under close observation one can tell the film was rushed to avoid the writers strike. On second thought it might have been in production during the writers strike? Who knows? All I know is, is that I like it. What keeps me coming back to IRON MAN 2 is the films fun irreverence. Robert Downey Jr. is Tony Stark and it'll be big shoes to fill after the Avengers sequel. Early word is that IRON MAN 3 fixes all the problems with IRON MAN 2. I'm expecting the new film to be far superior, so more than likely IRON MAN 2 might become a distant memory like STAR TREK III: THE SEARCH FOR SPOCK and not the worst thing ever like STAR TREK V: THE FINAL FRONTIER.

I have a love hate relationship with the Avengers Initiative sub plot in the Phase One Marvel movies. I love the sub plot because I was a huge comic book geek back in the day and seeing this stuff unfold on the silver screen and done correctly mind you is a dream come true. What I hate is that the so called sub plot feels more like 'the plot' and these Phase One films tend to feel too much like advertisements for MARVEL'S THE AVENGERS. What if MARVEL'S THE AVENGERS had ended up sucking?

My only other problem with the movie is Micky Rourke. Great actor but in this he looks asleep half of the time. I don't think he wanted to be in the movie. I have no clue but in some scenes it really feels like he is just improvising most of the time probably because he doesn't give a crap.

My final nit pick is that the movie only has 3 or 4 action scenes in it. Isn't it movie law that a sequel must have at least twice the amount of action as the original?

Despite all that I love the humor in the movie. From the beginning at Capitol Hill till the end with Pepper Potts getting on to Tony for not telling her that he might be dying. Good Stuff.

In conclusion I think IRON MAN 2 holds up significantly well if you're a fan of the Tony Stark character and the rest of the Iron Man universe. But if you take that aspect away from it then yeah it's not that great of a movie with it's rushed production and pacing issues.

So far I love the Marvel cinematic universe and that's what's going to keep me coming back to this film. Maybe not as much as the other films in the series, but I'll likely never write it off as an epic fail.

Tomorrow I see IRON MAN 3 which kicks off Phase Two of the Marvel cinematic universe! I cannot wait!