Analog Thoughts on a Digital Age

Friday, June 30, 2006

The New Transformers Teaser Up

Not much to see here, but I can definitely see the direction Michael Bay is trying to go with this franchise. This looks to me a darker, more sinister Transformers. You cant really emulate the kitschy elements of the cartoon into the movie and be taken seriously. I kinda like the Mars rover angle. Obviously it was done to ground the concept in to the audience's collective consciousness that we may be invaded by giant robots that transform into trucks, camaros and F 15s.

That's a pretty tough thing to do.

Click here.

Click here for the site and to view the trailer in Quicktime.

And speaking of camaros, here's a pic I snagged from a site. It was pulled out of the site afterwards so it's special. Its a shot of a robot in earth. Shh, let this be our little secret.

Movie Review: "Superman Returns" (2006)

Where to begin....

Okay. We have all seen it by now and we have our own little comments, favorites and probably even dislikes about what came out. After so many MANY years we finaly see the Man of Steel in the flesh incarnated in a young unknown Brandon Routh with The Usual Suspects and X-Men 1 and 2 director Brian Singer at the helm and Kevin Spacey as Lex Luthor. How can this possibly go wrong?

Superman (Brandon Routh) is missing for five years. After having heard that astronomers have found remnants of his home planet Krypton, he embarks on a journey of discovery to learn more about his home, his, parents and perhaps, himself (cheese helmet...on!)

He comes back unannounced, as when he left, he makes his grand entrance by saving an airbus crash reminiscent of the mother of all plane crashes, the 9/11 tragedies. Coincidentally Clark Kent returns to the Daily Planet without much hulabaloo and discovers that his main squeeze Lois Lane (Kate Bosworth), has married and has a kid.

In the meantime, Lex Luthor hatches a plan to create another real estate venture much like the first one in Superman: The Movie. Only this time he utilizes the crystals found in Superman's Fortress of Solitude to create a new continent and bury the rest of North and South America underwater, Metropolis being in point blank range.

Superman's enormous responsibility seems great. Plus he has to deal with the whole Lois thing too. Well, being a superhero sucks sometimes.

The movie is great. But not awesome. I say this both because I expected a little more. More of everything. Dialogue, action. And maybe less of the romance, but more action against villainy. Like chasing cat burglars and boat robbers. I loved the airplane scene. It tops the Golden gate bridge scene in X Men 3, too bad I didn't even get to see it in IMAX. That would have rocked!

Superman is presented like a god in this movie. Routh is so good looking that he comes accross as iconic. What I mean is he is too good looking to be human. Which of course, Superman isn't. Bosworth, IMO, lacked the sass that Margot Kidder had. I have come to the conclusion that Spacey channelled a different Lex from Gene Hackman's. I saw the comic book Lex rather than the Hackman Lex in this one.

We all know by now why there's a kid in this movie. And what bearing he has in the story. Most people who I had sat with in the theaters knew it. Singer knew we would catch on. And it's all good. I'm still figuring out how Singer is going to handle all this in the sequels (we all know that too).

Over all my rating would be great, but not the greatest.

Rocketboy's Review: ****(4 out of 5 stars)

Friday, June 23, 2006

The Millenium Falcon Transforms!

Once more...the geek in me emerges and rears its ugly but finely combed head.

I was late for work and completely bummed when I came in early this morning. So since our online tools were down I tried to check the updates in some of my reference sites. Sure enough I come across some really bordering the outer realms of ultra-coolness that it made me forget that I was probably gonna get a warning for my schedule adherence.

Just when I thought Hasbro has made its way through my childhood, it comes pulling me back in.

"With lots of electronic lights and sounds, this is a fun toy for everybody. Remember Han Solo boasting to Obi-Wan Kenobi about how great his ship is? This robot actually talks, using Harrison Ford's voice from the trilogy with such classic quotes as "I have a bad feeling about this!" and "She's the fastest ship in the fleet." The toy also features Chewbacca's classic roar, and a number of sound effects from the engines, guns, and computers of the Millennium Falcon."

In the same site, I also get to find a Slave 1 ship that turns into...well..Boba Fett!!

An officemate told me that this was actually availabel HERE already. What? I've been frequenting the toy department almost every time I go to the mall (that statement alone cost me 4 possible future dates), and I have never seen any of these treasures anywhere. Must look harder...must resist temptation. Just one more week till salary day... must.. resist. The force is too strong......

Props to TheMovieBlog.

Saturday, June 17, 2006

Comparative Review: "The Lake House" (2006); "Il Mare" (2000)

I just saw The Lake House yesterday expecting another crappy remake of another fine Asian original. Instead I was quite impressed with what they've done.

I had also only recently seen Il Mare on DVD. I have known about the movie for years because of my obvious infatuation with Sassy Girl Jeon Ji Hyun, but never really got around to seeing it for myself. My growing interest in the American remake prompted me to get the video and actually see it. here's how the story of both movies goes...

A woman (Sandra Bullock, Jeon Ji Hyun) moves out of her rented lake House and leaves a letter for the next tenant to forward all her mail to her new address. An architect (Keanu Reeves, Lee Jung Jae) moves in and replies to the letter and sends it to the woman. Woman wonders why the date of his letter is two years late. Man says "what do you mean?" Woman says, "It's 2006 (1999 in Il Mare)". man says, "No, it's 2004(1997 in Il Mare in case you can't do math)". Man gets curious and looks for woman's address... it's still under construction. they finally realize that they live two years apart through a mailbox that knows no time. And so begins their beautiful yet futile love story.

There are too many details in the movie I want to get into but can't because I have a splitting headache. So we will have to do with just that. Anyway you get the idea.

You cant help but compare the similarities in the movie such as the dog's paw prints in the walkway. The freak winter drizzle warning and the encounter in the train station. But here are a lot of variations between this story that are explored by both movies that were not in each other's script. For example, The Lake House turned Bullock's character into a doctor, which gives her character more relevance to the story, instead of Jeon's cartoon voice talent. There is actual 'tactile' contact between the Americans but the Koreans barely shared a glance in the moments when they were in the same place and the same time period.

Generally, Il Mare is more complicated story-wise. Emphasizing on the plot's complexity which is not very favorable for every viewer. Most times, we are left to figure out most of the story without clues. The ending is akin to your typical Korean tearjerker (although do cannot conclude that it has a sad ending). The rewriters of The Lake House obviously saw to it that the story was more simplified and added a lot of romatic undertones to many of the scenes such as adding jazz music and the Classics in the soundtrack (which is excellent). The ending is a little contrived for maximum kilig factor and is not necessarily logical, given that we are also dealing with the science of the consistency of events in the movie. Yes there is a major plot hole. The story was sacrificed for the sake of a giddy sigh from the girls in the theater.

Il Mare is a bit longer, but hey, all Korean movies are almost 30 minutes longer than hollywood movies. Both may have their faults, but all in all both are very satisfying two hours in the theater.

Rocketboy's Rating: "The Lake House" (***); "Il Mare" (****)

Friday, June 16, 2006

Transformers Set Pics

Now there's not a lot, but we do see Tyrese and some other guys in it.

click on this thread for more Transformers pics that don't mean anything.

Props to TheMovieBlog

Saturday, June 10, 2006

Movie Review: "Cars" (2006)

Watching cars talk and interact with each other is probably weird but Pixar's new CGI masterpiece Cars just makes it as normal as orange juice in the morning.

The Cars concept came to director John Lasseter naturally because as hs said in an interview, Los Angeles (where the Pixar headquarters are) is a "car loving culture". Since they were exposed to vehicles both good and bad, it felt natural for them to make a movie about cars and car "issues".

Lightning McQueen (Owen Wilson) is a hotshot rookie out to win the coveted Piston Cup. He and his rivals end up in a 3-way tie in the final lap of the Piston Cup finals which resulted in a raceoff in california to determine the real winner the following week. En route to Cali Lightning's carrier truck dozes off on the road and accidentally drops Lightning off in a sleepy town called Radiator Springs on Route 66 where he causes a major road accident that damages their main road. He is sentenced by town authorities led by Doc Hudson (Paul Newman) to fix the road before going on his way to Cali. Stuck and bored, Lightning befriends the towns repairman Mater (Larry The Cable Guy) and develops feelings for the town lawyer Sally Carrera (Bonnie Hunt).

The thing about Pixar is that, compared to the other production studios out there, they are very story driven company, not 'star' driven (well considering they don't have actors yes, but animators can also be "stars" in their own right). Aside from raising the bar in CGI animation every single year, Pixar produces really good stories too. Cars may be a really simple story to tell. but it works on many different levels. The 'kid' level shows us a young hotshot rookie learning responsibility. The adult level shows us the the weathering effect of 'progress' and how it alienates us from what's important in life.

Not quite as good as The Incredibles, but a worthy addition to the modern classics that are the Pixar movies (I refuse to credit Disney, as that I believe Disney has turned into a money-grubbing corporate slimehole and is no longer the creative company that it used to be. Disney wouldn't even be in business right now if it weren't for Pixar)!

Rocketboy's Rating:****(4 out of 5 Stars)

Friday, June 09, 2006

Transformers The Movie Poster Up

Their War, Our World.

AICN has just posted the first teaser poster for the new Transformers live action movie. I have to say that I am a little underwhelmed. The eye looks cool. Looks to me like Megatron. Anyway, since it's just a teaser, it isn meant to be revealing.

Can't wait to see how this is gonna come out.

Props to TheMovieBlog and AICN.

Thursday, June 08, 2006

Stuff I've Won Over The Months

Writing reviews is a hobby of mine that I've developed in the past two years. I have always wanted people to know what I thought about movies not only because I am an attention whore, (did I just say 'whore'? tee hee) but because I feel my opinions are valid and that people should listen to what I have to say. (Awkward silence) Ok, ok, I'm sorry. I love making reviews because it gives me the chance to voice out my humble opinions about one of my favorite things in the world...MOVIES. Both good and bad.

Aside from writing reviews in my, from time to time I join contests in Sometimes, PinoyExchange holds review contests in their international movies messageboard thread and give out really cool prizes. I have had the opportunity to join a couple. And as luck would have it, I've won some pretty cool stuff.

The first thing I won was a wallet embossed with the logo of the movie Syriana. This was when I joined their Syriana movie review contest back in March. (Click the image for a larger view)

A month after that, I joined their V For Vendetta Contest where they gave out a Guy Fawkes mask replica encased in the same cardboard boxes they used in the movie the masks were delivered in to the homes of the English citizens in the movie.

Luck turns out, and it's sweet.

Sunday, June 04, 2006

Happy Blog-sary!!

To everyone who has been visiting this blog since the beginning... What are you doing with your lives?

To those who just found out about it...Go visit the archives.

To those who don't won't be reading this anyway.

Seriously. Thanks Guys.

Thursday, June 01, 2006

Transformers, The Grudge 2 and Bryce Dallas Howard

Some pics have surfaced claiming to be the first on-set photos of Michael Bay's Transformers movie. A Decepticon cop car? Apparently this was done this week, being the first week of shooting. No word yet if these are legit or which actors were on set. Bay has said that he learned a trade secret, apparently from Speilberg, that he only keeps one copy of the complete script around the his laptop. And that he gives his actors snippets of the script, apt only for the days shoot, for them to read and rehearse. Smart move. Now I can get my hands on that laptop...

I may be a big fan of Japanese cinema, but I'm not exactly ecxcited about their American remakes. I did however, stumble upon a sweet teaser poster of The Grudge 2. Click on the image to scare your kid even more.

I recently changed my header again. Looks like Bryce Dallas Howard is really busy these days. Although The Village was IMO a sub par M. Knight Shyamalan film, she had managed to keep the movie interesting till the end. She has managed to establish herself as an A class actress without resting on the laurels of her very accomplished director father Ron Howard, nor has she been overshadowed by his success.

On a talk show, Ron Howard even related that Bryce wouldnt even tell him when she went to auditions and wouldnt practice lines with him even if he insisted, he being one of the most sought after directors in Hollywood and all. She will be in Lady In The Water this summer and has been cast as Gwen Stacy in Spiderman 3.