Justice League Is Served!

Ice! Mr. Freeze! Captain Cold! Killer Frost! Icicle! Ice Maiden! Blue Snowman! Minister Blizzard! Together they are The Just Ice League! And none of them appear in the Justice League movie!

I’m pleased to say that Justice League doesn’t suck! That doesn’t necessarily mean it’s spectacular. Do not go in expecting a Marvel Studios film. It’s a good movie but not a great movie. Much of what holds it back is having to clean up after Batman v. Superman: Dawn Of Justice. Fortunately the Justice League itself is a charismatic team instead of the maudlin worst case scenario we’d feared. The action is kinetic, the jokes are funny, & the story is coherent. So says The Wages of Cinema!

Fans of Eureka please send them feedback! Then read onward for THE SPOILERS OF JUSTICE! (They’re like the Hammers of Justice, except you can’t make bookshelves with ’em.)

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Thor Ragnarok (& Roll) Is Hela Good!

You ever go to a barbecue joint you haven’t been to in a while & decide you might as well splurge on a full rack of baby back  ribs? Then when they bring out your food, it looks like almost too much food? But then you start on the first rib & it’s even more delicious than you remembered. So you quickly strip the flesh from a second rib. Then a haze sweeps over you. Once it passes you see your glass of sangria is empty, your plate of ribs contains naught but a heap of bones, the other patrons have expired with large chunks missing, & your hands are covered in red goo of assorted viscosity. Then you declare that it was really yummy! Luckily the kitchen staff appears intact so you may return. That’s what Thor Ragnarok is like!

The Wages of Cinema invited me back to collaboreview it with them. I agreed since they had nice things to say about me in their retrospective podcast of favorite episodes. Verily doth SPOILERS roam free onward!

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Do Androids Dream Of Blade Runner 2049?

Can you believe we’re already up to the 2,048th Blade Runner sequel? The original is both a great movie & a bad adaptation of Philip K. Dick’s Do Androids Dream Of Electric Sheep? (It was refreshingly humanistic to see a dystopian future on a dying world where people get along through a Jain-like religion based on empathy & animal reverence. ) I got to chat about the latest one on The Wages of Cinema because its usual co-host was unavailable again. When you can’t get Andrew, settle for second best! Ofjack Korey is there too!

Pretty much anything I type about this film is a spoiler, so let’s drive right into Blade Runner 2049! Uh, you should probably watch the one of the cuts of the first flick beforehand as well.

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The Introvert’s Nightmare Is Aronofsky’s Mother!

Darren Aronofsky’s latest motion picture is sure to launch a thousand film school theses, so allow this to become one of your citations! Mother! is a tricky film to talk about because, much like FILLER!, every sentence will look wrong unless you manage to place the title at the end. Then it just looks like you’re shouting, which is preferable to not knowing where punctuation goes. After the The Wages Of Cinema podcast collaboreview (They let me discuss a movie that’s not based on a comic book or sci-fi!), it’ll be all SPOILERS. The story is fairly simple, but it’s stuffed to the gills with so many metaphors & ambiguous themes. The most nonspoilery synopsis I can give is “Renowned poet Javier Bardem invites creepy strangers into his giant house much to the chagrin of his devoted yet neglected wife, Jennifer Lawrence.” The characters are credited with descriptions, so I can just refer to the cast by their real names with impunity. It’s a movie that transcends its pretension by going all out.

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Spider-Man: Homecoming Is Fun Yet Not Definitive

And we’re back! I don’t always appear in photographs, but when I do I make the the front page of the July 3rd Chronicle Herald metro edition.

Oh, they made another Spider-Man reboot movie? Andrew from The Wages of Cinema told me I was required to see it with them for color commentary podcasting. He has a very menacing stare!

Websling on down for a SPOILER spectacular! THWIP!

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How Wondrous Was Wonder Woman?

It used to be a recurring joke that any comic book character would get a movie before Wonder Woman. At a 2013 NYCC afterparty hosted by The Mary Sue, one of the cocktail specials was called Wonder Woman Movie so guests could demand “Give me a Wonder Woman Movie!” This would’ve been effective more promptly if the bartenders were WB executives. (I slightly preferred the Strong Female Protagonist cocktail because it was green like She-Hulk.) A Wonder Woman movie has even been a recurring part of her comics mythos since the 1940’s, so it’s about time Hollywood caught up. Now it’s finally her turn!  I was concerned by all the positive press the movie was receiving because I feared I’d be the lone weirdo that didn’t love it. Fortunately it lived up to the hype, even incorporating some of my ranty demands!  That’ll teach Marvel Studios to cheap out on bribing me! I’m collaboreviewing Wonder Woman with The Wages of Cinema! (They’ve just done a podcast where they responded to my comments!) It’s a wonderful film!

Although she was still as wooden as the surrounding film, Gal Gadot was the best part of Batman v. Superman: Yawn Dawn of Justice because she was a cedar in a forest of larches. Here Ms. Gadot shows she can actually act! Her expressive face conveys childlike wonder at the world outside of Themyscira. She’s a DC protagonist allowed to smile without being a baddie! She’s violent without being dour! They convey her strength through compassion perfectly!

WW1

Americans offended by the lack of white stars on her skirt should take solace in WB nixing the red star on her tiara to alienate her Communist fans too.

Hereafter come the SPOILERS. If you’ve yet to purchase a ticket to see this film, please stop reading here & watch this Nerdist medley featuring Ciara “Hawkgirl” Renee!

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Guardians Of The Galaxy 2: Cosmic Boogaloo!

After my off-brand (?) foray into limited edition food, & Zack Snyder’s reclusive axes, I’m back with a much more mainstream collaboreview of Guardians of the Galaxy vol. 2! The Wages of Cinema had me back to remember names & tell me I’ve been pronouncing esoteric wrong my whole life!

The first Guardians of the Galaxy may be my favorite MCU movie. This may be because it felt like a Farscape relaunch, the clearest parallel being Star-Lord retooled to be more like John Crichton. (Ben Browder has a cameo in this one!) It’s one of the rare adaptations that change almost everything from the source material while managing to be wonderful. (Meanwhile the 2017 Free Comic Book Day issue of GOTG has Marvel rejigger the team to be even closer to the movie.) It even works as a stand alone space opera without needing to worry about the other Marvel movies. Fortunately this sequel maintains the magic of the first installment without falling into the trap of just rehashing it. Even the credits are fun! The trailers did a great job not spoiling the movie so I would have something to do here!

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