Posted in Media/Pop Culture

Spider-Man (2002)

I have finally gotten to the point in my Marvel watch-through that most everybody knows and loves. The first Tobey Maguire Spider-Man. This movie I feel is very important not only to Marvel or Spider-Man but also to the idea of what a Marvel movie is today.

This is one of the better representations of how old Spidey should be and it includes the webs shooting directly out of his wrists, unlike all the other movies and unfortunately the comics too (until he fights the Spider Queen, but you’ll just have to read the comics for that).

The major downside of this movie is that it eliminates the original Green Goblin. The Green Goblin is supposed to be one of Spidey’s most notorious villains and they killed him in the first movie so it didn’t leave much room to expand.

Other than that it includes some major highlights such as the best portrayal I’ve seen of J. Jonah Jameson (the newspaper boss) and his famous “Get me pictures of Spider-Man!” this movie is also host to the ‘famous’ upside-down Spider-Man kiss. This is also parodied in Weird Al’s song Ode to A Superhero.

The most important part of this movie is the very short and very easily missed Stan Lee cameo where he pulls a kid to safety when the Goblin is attacking downtown during the big festival. It is the first appearance of Stan Lee in a Marvel movie.

Still no post credits scene though…

Posted in Media/Pop Culture

Blade II (2002)

The first sequel in my Marvel watch-through is Blade II, made only 4 years after the first one. This movie went like the first one in the sense that he’s not really a superhero, just more of a half-Vampire with a good alignment. However, this movie makes him team up with the Vampire council in order to eliminate a new breed of Vampire that is threatening Humans and Vampires alike.

So far I’m going to say that they’re not ‘good’ but definitely fall into the ‘ok’ category of movies; however they shouldn’t have been forgotten like they are because they are still enjoyable. This one having a little humor (and a lot of swearing).

The main problem I have here is how the movie begins. During the first film, Blade’s “sidekick”, Whistler, kills himself in order to not turn into a Vampire. However the beginning of this movie is Blade rescuing him from the Vampires because he did turn and then was kidnapped. I realize that he is an enjoyable character and definitely needed for the plot, but if you killed him you killed him. Bringing him back this way doesn’t make sense. They tried to connect it to the end of the first movie (which ends where he is hunting Vampires in Russia) by saying how Blade searched Russia and Romania and all over the globe looking for him, nice try, but I’m not buying it.

Now this may be something else that I overlooked, but I don’t think it was ever revealed how Blade became so good at well, using a sword. Like ok, he’s a half-Vampire which could explain heightened senses, but not that skill with a blade.

Overall I feel like this movie is underrated but wild. A pretty ok watch for sure- just don’t have your kids watch it with you.

Posted in Media/Pop Culture

X-Men (2000)

Finally I have reached the year 2000 on my Marvel watch-through. However, this is where the bulk of the movies are.

X-Men is a movie that I have seen a decent amount of times and I find it very enjoyable. The first dilemma I noticed is that when Rouge ran away from home and met up with Wolverine, nobody reported her missing? When Professor X is giving Wolverine a tour he says that most of the students there are run-aways, now wouldn’t that raise several red flags in the legal world?

Speaking of the legal world; X-Men is great but it doesn’t fit in with the rest of the Marvel universe that it supposedly is a part of because there is constantly legislation being passed that monitor and harm mutants but yet other superheros like Spider-Man or Captain America are perfectly ok? That doesn’t really make sense.

After that, when they are trying to find out more about Wolverine and they point out his skeleton and the healing factor but yet they don’t say anything about the fucking claws that come out of his hands being one of his mutations. Speaking of claws, Sabertooth is a joke of a villain in this movie but in X-Men Origins: Wolverine it clearly shows us that he is supposed to be Wolverine’s brother. I understand with a lack of memory how Wolverine wouldn’t have noticed but that doesn’t say why Sabertooth didn’t.

Following that when Mystique puts the (what I assume to be) poison in Cerebro, that conveniently renders Professor X unconscious for the entire battle; I’m assuming that that was a poison of the mind, since it only activated when he put on the helmet, I’m not sure and it definitely wasn’t clear at all.

The biggest problem that I had with it however was that at the end, Mystique was able to disguise herself as a guard so that she wouldn’t go to jail except that she was stabbed in the stomach by Wolverine and layed there for who knows how long. She is then able to disguise herself as the dead senator, and openly speak against the bill that he proposed, and nobody found that fishy? Doesn’t this man have a family or anything?

I am still yet to see one of the famous Marvel post-credits scenes as well. This is a must watch for any X-Men or superhero fan and a decent movie for anybody else.

Posted in Media/Pop Culture

Generation One (2017)

I just finished reading the first book of the new Lorien Legacies Reborn series. For those of you who don’t know this is a continuation of the Lorien Legacies series- also known as the I Am Number Four books. If you haven’t read any of them I highly recommend that you do and if you saw the movie I apologize greatly because the film was absolutely terrible. The I Am Number Four series was one that I accidentally stumbled upon (by a classmate recommendation) in 10th grade and I instantly fell  in love with the series and no matter how I have changed as a person I still love the series.

BELOW HERE CONTAINS SPOILERS

Continue reading “Generation One (2017)”

Posted in Media/Pop Culture

Blade (1998)

Continuing on my movies based on Marvel Comics characters watch-through brings me to the first one that I didn’t know anything about before watching. This movie is not actually about a superhero (ok, I guess that depends on your definition of what a superhero is, but I digress) but instead it’s about a Vampire hunter.

Blade is born while is mother is dying from a Vampire bite; this grants him the benefits of being part Vampire and part Human, as well as all the downsides. This makes for a great story-line not only between good and bad but also including personal dilemmas.

Since I’ve never read a Blade comic, I don’t have any outside influence to reference how I feel about this movie. I think that Wesley Snipes was an excellent choice to play Blade. I also would say that even though I would consider this a good movie over all, it is rather gory and that was quite uncomfortable (but it is a Vampire movie so I guess I should’ve expected it, right?). There is also a scene where he shares what I can only describe as a sensual moment with his mother.

The ending obviously shows that there is a continuation- which there was, 4 years later- and I will be interested to see how that one is. The comments on my Facebook post were positive about this movie. If you are an action or vampire fan I recommend it, if you are the standard movie or superhero fan it’s nothing to go out of your way for but it’s also not something that I would avoid if you saw it on TV one day.

Posted in Media/Pop Culture

The Fantastic Four (1994)

There was a reason this film was never released. The quality of the camera was so bad that you could barley tell what was going on, the acting was awkward at best and the story-line was confusing.

The seemed to be not only Doctor Doom, but also a different villain whose name I don’t think was ever released. Additionally The Thing’s blind girlfriend is kidnapped without even establishing her role as girlfriend. Also they portrayed Reed Richards and Susan Storm to be close to 10 years apart which is not the same story that we all know and love.

The powers of Johnny, Susan, and Reed all come into the story at about half-way but they are shown in a way that I would think a film from the 60s maybe should’ve shown them, not the 90s.

I gave up about half-way through because I was unable to keep my attention on it any longer. I highly do not recommend this movie to anybody and I’m very glad that it was never officially released (but is available on YouTube) and has been forgotten.

Posted in Media/Pop Culture

Captain America (1990)

The third movie on my Marvel watch through is yet another direct-to-video forgotten Marvel film.

1990s Captain America needed to be forgotten in order for the modern version of this character to actually thrive. For starters, the origin is very different. He volunteers for the project without actually signing up, he smokes, and he has polio. Additionally, the scientist that transformed him transformed the Red Skull which is an interesting plot point.

Early in the film he also gets shot at point blank range and barely flinches, which is not within the realm of Captain America (unless maybe he’s wearing armor) and during the transformation they refer to him as becoming more like Superman, which just like I said in my original Punisher review, I don’t understand why Marvel would give positive shout outs to their competition in their own movies.

From there it goes downhill though. He goes to Germany instantly getting a suit and his shield from essentially an unknown source and has a show down with Red Skull in which he loses, cuts off Red Skulls arm, and gets strapped to a rocket aimed at the White House.

After a variety of other strange story developments he has to go to the castle where Red Skull is hiding to save the President and his old girlfriend’s daughter (who is now his girlfriend).

During the credits, I realized that the movie was geared as propaganda. The President is set to give a very important speech on climate and the environment at the end of the movie and during the credits it blatantly states “PLEASE SUPPORT THE ENVIRONMENT ACT OF 1990”.

Once again, a definite movie to skip for film fans and superhero fans alike.

Posted in Media/Pop Culture

The Punisher (1989)

Now I’m not sure if I pointed this out in my Howard the Duck review, but I plan on watching through all of the Marvel movies ever made. This will not count TV movies and it will only count animated movies if they went to theater (in the USA). I will also count subsidiaries of Marvel comics (which will include movies like Kick-Ass and Men in Black).

A few weeks ago I watched another forgotten Marvel movie, the first Punisher movie. This was a direct-to-video and understandably the first Marvel movie to receive a reboot.

The movie basically throws you into the middle of a series. The Punisher is already established as a vigilante, the crime bosses are being picked off one by one. There was very little explanation of how the Punisher got to this point (or why- they did show a scene with his family being killed in a car bomb, but little further explanation was provided).

Additionally, he lives in the sewer and gets his information from a failed drunk actor. I haven’t read too many older Punisher comics but at least recently, his life as a superhero is not that shitty.

The main storyline focuses on two rival gangs fighting with the Punisher getting involved only to save the children.

In one scene he is captured by the Japanese gang and when they ask who he is he tells them Batman. Now I’m not sure what was going on in Marvel in the 1980s but traditionally I don’t think you’re supposed to glorify your competition in your own movies.

If you haven’t watched it, I don’t recommend it, you’re not missing much. It is the type of action movie you would watch if you were bored on a weekend and it was on TV.

Posted in Media/Pop Culture

Howard the Duck

So as I fall more and more behind as movies are being released to theaters I have decided to try and watch all of the Marvel movies from the beginning.

The first one takes us to Howard the Duck (1986). This movie was an absolute bomb in the box office, and for quite an obvious reason.

This movie focuses around an anthropomorphic talking duck who is transported from Duck World to Earth and then meets a younger singer. The majority of the movie is spend with him attempting to figure out how to get home and also rescuing his new Human girlfriend from space demons.

Now even though this movie did have its funny moments, most of the time you would feel awkward watching this movie; almost like a “geez I hope nobody walks in and sees me watching this”. There are a variety of scenes showing nude humanoid ducks and there’s even a scene where there was some borderline bestiality.

With all of the Marvel heros available by 1986 you have to ask yourself what was going through their heads when they decided their first movie should be of an obscure character that is inappropriate for children?

I have never read a Howard the Duck comic, because they never interested me (and now I doubt I ever will) however it seems as though Marvel is attempting to bring him back into the spotlight. Howard has been spotted in a post-credit scene in the first Guardians of the Galaxy movie and he has a short cameo in the second GotG film. Interesting to say the least.

Now one would have to wonder firstly how Howard would be on these different planets (or how he became part of the Collectors collection), and if that means that he exists in a separate universe than that of the Avengers (even though many theories suggest that we will be seeing these universes merge in the near future).

Finally, I’m not sure if his cameos are hinting to a future reboot of his character or if it’s just a fun look back at some C list (or lower) characters, or maybe even just a look at where they’ve come from; one thing is for sure: I will not be excited for another Howard the Duck movie, if that is the case.

If you haven’t seen this movie, don’t fret. It doesn’t connect with anything else in the Marvel universe and would just be for if you were more interested in the origin of one of their forgotten characters.

We’re just all glad that Marvel movies have significantly improved since then.

Posted in Language Learning/Travel, Media/Pop Culture

French TV Show Change- Again

Yes I know, it was only a few days ago that I posted that I had decided to switch the TV show I was watching in French, but I have decided to do it again.

I have changed it to Friends.

I don’t know why I didn’t originally chose Friends for this because I love that show and I’ve seen every episode (however it could be because it took me forever to finish it the first time that I watched all the way through it). This time around I’m watching it entirely in French with no subtitles.

This was actually a recommended TV show to watch from the Fluent in 3 Months program because it has been seen so many times so you don’t have to panic if you miss something or when you first start out and you don’t know what they are saying and you know it was supposed to be funny because there was the background laughter. (One thing that is really throwing me off).

Other than that the only other problem I’ve had so far is that I am expecting it to be in the original actors voices, but I’m sure that’s something I will get over soon.