Kevin Smith: The Jump-On

I saw a question on a Facebook group earlier asking what everyone’s jump-on was to Kevin Smith.  For some it was Clerks, the one that started it all.  But, based on different generations, availability etc. everyone will have a different movie/medium that drew them in.

I figured, seeing as I hold Kev’s book “Tough Sh*t” as the reason/inspiration to start running my own business and based upon the recent news that Mallrats 2 is gonna be happening, that I will drop my 2 pence (cents as the folks over the pond would say).

Mallrats started me off.  I would have been 11 when it came out but it wasn’t until around 2003/04 (I was 19/20) when I discovered my first Kevin Smith flick.

I worked in a town called Galashiels in the local Council offices in Non-Domestic Rates. It was 9-5 Mon-Fri.  I’d get an hour for lunch but I’d only take 30 minutes – if I could take less I would have; we worked on flexi-time so I’d take shorter lunches to bank up time for days off/early finishes/late starts.

Each lunch, I would do the same thing.  I’d walk up through town to WH Smiths and Woolworths (way before they went bust and went online only).  I would spend a while browsing the movies and games sections and always leave with at least 1 purchase (5 times a week every week – expensive lunchtimes!)

I remember the cover of Mallrats caught my eye and seeing as it was only a fiver I decided to buy it along with a couple other titles (can’t remember what they were).  After my first viewing, Mallrats became my go-to; I would watch it whenever I had nothing new to watch and often I’d watch it over and over until I fell asleep.

After that, not really knowing anything about the dude that made it, I bought Dogma.  I didn’t realise the movies had any connection until I watched it and met Jay & Silent Bob again.  At this point, the View Askewniverse had me.  I bought Clerks and them bought the Clerks animated series on eBay (imported from Australia).

And since then, I have made a point of watching/buying everything he has done.

If it hadn’t been for Mallrats all those years ago, I might not have become the outspoken, filthy animal that I am.  I may never have learned to let my geek back out after he was caged back in high school.  I may never have ventured on this journey that I have embarked upon.

Then again, I may have made something sooner instead of being as close to a slacker as I was…(reference intentional 😉 )

Where did you “jump on”?

Walrus Yes (But Really, Aw Hell No…WTF?!)

Tusk.

What can I say?

I’ve been pumped ever since I heard that the movie was actually gonna get made.  Back when I was pretty up to date with my podcast library, I listened to SModcast 259 not long after it went live on iTunes.  The Gumtree ad that Kev read out made me chuckle and then when Kev and Scott discussed, elaborated and took it to the next level it really entertained me.

Since 259, every SModcast thus far that has mentioned Tusk kept me yearning to see it.  Especially when I listened to episode 308 which featured the guy who created the hoax ad, Chris Parkinson, that went on to inspire Kevin Smith.

Needless to say, once I got settled to watch Tusk in bed last night, I was pretty fecking excited!  Red State left me wanting more from Kevin Smith’s darker side.  Plus, as soon as I heard Michael Parks was involved I was stoked moreso.

I knew a lot about the movie thanks to the podcasts.  I knew that Howard Howe doesn’t just want to turn Wallace into a walrus.  He actually does do it.  I knew that this movie was all kinds of fucked up.  But even though I knew all of this, this movie still blew my mind.  I mean, c’mon, he TURNS HIM INTO A FUCKING WALRUS!  The visuals add to the effect and the flesh suit where other faces and bodies are sewn into it (you can see a rogue face on his left side later in the movie) is just astounding.  The podcasts, discussions, teases and flat out points made on Twitter and so on still didn’t prepare me for this.

My one criticism is Justin Long’s moustache.  It’s the creepiest part of the movie (in my opinion).

I truly loved this movie and, as a SMod fan (listening to the majority of the SModcast network) I felt that this movie delivered in so many unexpected areas.  Again, I knew things such as Ralph Garman‘s name being Frank Garmin (a reference to Hollywood Babble-On where Ralph gets called Frank).

As a big fan of Johnny Depp, his performance as Guy Lapointe (had to go and have those 2 sliders, though didn’t ya?) was hysterically funny and rather creepy (wouldn’t be Depp without an element of quirkiness/creepiness, eh?).

There are so many easter eggs for Kevin Smith fans – I really should sit down and do a commentary podcast (idea for the future).

I love all of Kevin Smith’s filmography (haters gon’ hate) and this is another superb addition to that collection.  Am I riding on his dick too much in this blog?  Probably.

But considering it’s because of his words in ‘Tough Shit‘ that I became inspired to create Nerdgazzum, it’s a dick worth riding.

C’mon, Mr Tusk, let’s enjoy the good ol’ times.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=60EUG-CDC_k

 

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Batmobile Full Reveal

So the interwebs has been full of sneaky pics and blurred shots on Instagram of the Batmobile on set.

Despite the lack of quality, they were still tantalising but – my good golly – this image is breathtaking.  Tumbler-esque but a bit more rough around the edges and nastier looking (as in more kick-ass).

Hot fudge holey moley, Batman! Another image of the ‘mobile!

As time goes on, more and more tidbits are coming from set and via official announcements as well as hints here and there from various folks involved or the potential folks to be involved.  DC/Warner seem to have finally found the ability to fully rival, if not surpass Marvel – all that’s to be done is release the movie and see how it fares against Marvel’s roster.

I truly hope they can finally achieve the greatness that they have enjoyed on the animated features side and bring that to the live action features.

World Of Warcraft Trailer

All I can say is “WOW”.  Pun may be intended, I’m still flabbergasted to determine my intentions.

It’s been a long long time since I last played World of Warcraft.  When I heard about a movie I was pretty excited but after seeing the trailer I’m just a puddle of fluid right now!

If you haven’t seen this glorious trailer check it out below.  If you already have, check it out again and increase the puddly-ness!

[su_youtube_advanced url=”https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TLzhlsEFcVQ”]

When You Wish Upon A Star…

NEW additions to the Disney Fairytale Designer couples line-up for 2014 just hit the interwebs.

So another five Limited Edition ‘happily ever after’ couples (they have no kids after all) have been revealed and as beautiful as Disney’s LE dolls usually are.

So here’s a sneak peek at
Tiana & Naveem
Pocahontas & John Smith
Cinderella & Prince Charming
Mulan & Li Shang
Aurora (in her Briar Rose getup) & Prince Phillip

tiana
poca
cinderlla
mulan
briar

 

Son Of Batman – Review

For  non comic readers, most don’t know of Bryce Wayne’s son.   Their knowledge of Ra’s al ghul and Talia are from the Nolan flicks at best.  They probably won’t even watch this.  Spoilers ahead.

We start off at the League of Assassins’ training ground.  Ra’s looks on with his grandson Damian and rudrly interrupted by an attack by Deathstroke who wants to run the League himself.

Ra’s is mortally we wounded, fingertips in the edge of a Lazarus Pit before Talia tells Damian it’s too late and it’s time to go to Gotham City…to meet his father.

The visuals follow on from Justice League: War.  The voiceovers seem lacking.  This is always my gripe with animated/videogame incarnations.  Perhaps I’m too firmly rooted to the voices of my childhood.  Kevin Conroy will forever be my Batman.

Talia leaves Damian in Bruce’s care due to the threat that faces the League.  After the initial surprise if having a son,  Bruce takes him home where he meets Alfred and becomes acquainted with the cave and Bruce’s much smaller venture (in comparison to the League).

The movie covers Damian’s progress into becoming the new Robin, taking some minor direction from Dick Grayson (Nightwing).  Dr. Langstrom has been put to work by Deathstroke into finishing Ra’s al ghul’s plan to create an army of man-bats to which Batman, Damian and Nightwing must foil and save Talia and the day.

The voice acting really took me out of this movie – I wanted to love it.  I wanted to enjoy seeing Damian and his father united as a reluctant duo who grow closer and bond as father and son.  Sadly, the movie left me feeling a tad deflated.  It’s a rare thing for me to not praise anything Batman related highly but, I have to be honest.  It caught a lot of great moments from the comics, added a few new twists but it just didn’t feel right.  It felt too cheesy and wooden.  Your typical ‘state the obvious’ lines you get in your typical Japanimation that has been re-dubbed for Western audiences.

The animation is great – effects-wise it kicks ass.  But, as we all (should) know, Batman isn’t just about the action and the visuals.  What maintains our interest is the story.  It felt like too much was cramped into this to try and tell the story of father and son.  This may have worked out better as a multi-part feature or even a TV series.

So, in summary – an OK film with some stand-out moments.  Some good.  Some bad.

Score: [usr 3]

 

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles TV Spot – “Brothers”

The Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles TV spot has recently been aired and, I must admit, I’m coming around to the idea.

I loved the Turtles when I was a kid – namely the animated series.  The original movie, despite the fact it doesn’t really stand the test of time, is a tough one to beat but this trailer has made me change my mind.  Let’s just hope it’s not another flick where the trailers are better than the actual movie!

Check it out below!

[su_youtube url=”https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JMaiWbVCZ0o”]

Hey (Again) You Guys!

The announcement of “The Goonies 2″ has set the interwebs ablaze with speculation, hate and potentially shattered childhoods.

The original flick was actually a late one for me – I didn’t watch it until I was a teenager (shameful, shocking and unacceptable – I know).  I think I may have seen bits of it as a kid but it was only when it came out on DVD that I can actually say I watched it.  That One-Eyed Willy, eh?

So…decades on the sequel has been announced and the original cast is set to come back.  That has to be a good thing, right?  Very rarely do you get a flick that has waited years for a sequel and original cast members return…let alone the entire cast!

My only concern is where these guys are at in their lives now – Sean Astin has carried on working and I can name movies he’s starred in since.  Corey Feldman only conjures up names of movies in my mind from the 80s and 90s (Stand By Me, Lost Boys, The ‘Burbs etc.)  Josh Brolin is the only one that I can say seems to have really done well for himself out of the lot of them in terms of memorable roles (again, my own opinion).  And, up until now, I didn’t even remember the guy who played Chunk’s real name (thanks to IMDB).

I must admit, I am pretty excited because the time between movies can add some extra depth to the flick and it could go off in so many directions.  Middle-aged guys recounting tales of ther days as Goonies and then go off on a haphazard adventure to feel young again (Wild Hogs…but much better I’m sure!)  Or add some make-up and make them tell tales to their grand kids who then go off and become the next generation of Goonies…who knows.

Nothing like this has really been done before in the sense of casting (that I can recall – correct me if I’m wrong) so it can either epically fail or it can do what all us fans want – make us Nerdgazzum all over the seats and floor in the cinema as we watch it.

What would be interesting is, as they;re grown up, we get a more adult and darker themed story…or will they keep it kid-friendly?  It would be great to think the story; just like the (hey you) guys has grown up and matured to be a swashbuckling tale of adulthood/mid-life crisis.

Hopefully more details will be leaked or hinted at soon.  I’m sure the upcoming Comic-Cons will no doubt allow some tasty little tidbits to come out at the Q&A panels etc.

Never say die.

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The Lego Movie ‘2-up’ Review (The Cheeky Second Opinion)

This movie isn’t for everyone…By that I mean it’s not for miserable folks,  idiots (the bad kind) and people prone to epilepsy (seriously, bad things will happen).

It’ll also put off a few who dismiss it as purely for kids (wrong).  It’s sheer manic, random over-the-top-ness will dissuade others (almost the movie’s downfall…ALMOST!  More on that later).

All these people are missing out on something truly wonderful, because…. It’s bloody awesome!!  What could have been a cynical, chucked together marketing exercise, turns out to be something far more…. Although you WILL want to buy more Lego!

To sum up the film in one sentence is virtually impossible, but I’ll try…It’s like being thrown into a washing machine full of Lego, on full spin cycle, while someone shouts very funny gags at you and gives you a big hug at the end!

From the moment you hear the relentlessly upbeat theme, clearly a joke in itself, that won’t leave your head for…well…ever, you’ll be in on the joke…

Amidst the barrage of crazy visuals (real Lego?  CGI?  Pleasingly you won’t be able to tell), constantly creative settings, endless slapstick gags and one liners, brilliant comedy timing, loveable characters and amazing cameos that I won’t spoil here, is a surprisingly easy to follow story.  The potential downfall I mentioned?  I’m not sure if some people won’t be able to dial out the craziness to follow what’s going on…maybe…But for most, the plucky nobody becoming hero is done fantastically here, amid all the bonkers, this movie has real hear and draws to a truly surprising, intelligent conclusion.

You’ll come away glowing with nostalgia; Benny the Spaceman, one of the funniest characters was literally directly lifted from my toy box.

You’ll wet yourself laughing, I don’t have kids but the parents in the cinema I watched it inwere laughing as hard if not more than the young ‘uns.

Ears wringing with the message that freedom to play is what keeps us young.

It appears, everything is indeed AWESOME.

SPACESHIP!!!!!

Sent by the Mighty Bear of Truth.

[usr 5]

Lego Movie Review

I wanna start this review by saying:

EVERYTHING IS AWESOME

[youtube=http://youtu.be/t6lHm-stXdM]

This movie is jam packed with fun.  Non Lego fans can get easily immersed in this movie based on the open hilarity and the fantastic voice acting from folks such as Morgan Freeman, Chris Pratt, Will Arnet, Will Ferrell, Liam Neeson and so on.

Lego fans can enjoy the references involving the part numbers appearing on screen like Matrix-style code and some of the real-life creations you can own now!

The humour is diverse – something for adults that just go straight over the kids’ heads and the kids have their own fun at the daft antics before them.  This is one of the funniest, well made and best movies I have ever seen.  The movie has depths you wouldn’t expect from a CG movie based on ‘kids’ toys’.

The voice acting is great and the characters own the screen.  Emmet, an average guy just living his life unwittingly embarks on a journey of self-discovery and heroism.  The subtle and not so subtle references to the Lego universe are great – he works in construction so there are large manuals held overhead depicting where the blocks go so Emmet and his colleagues can complete their work.

Batman is fantastic (lacks the screen time I would have liked) and is nothing like Batman (I mean, this one wrote and composed a song to play in the Batmobile…not very Dark Knight-like!) but he rocks the screen every time you see him.

There are ‘cameos’ from other Lego items such as Chewbacca, Han Solo, Lando Calrisia and even Duplo!

The plot follows Emmet, working as a regular guy in a world controlled by President Business, who is also known as the evil Lord Business voiced by Will Ferrell).  Lord Business doesn’t like change or imagination.  He has a plan to use the ‘Kragle’ to stop change for good.  In Lord Business’ chamber, he has many items that he either can’t pronounce or makes them sound posher than they are – the way he says nail polish remover is hilarious.  The ‘Kragle’ is basically ‘Krazy Glue’ with some letters missing.

Aided by Liam Neeson’s Bad Cop (who is also good cop when his face rotates), they are trying to hunt down and capture all ‘Master Builders’ to remove the radical element of change.  Bad Cop has a hard time with chairs, smashing them all over the screen at any given opportunity which is face-achingly funny alone!

Emmet’s journey culminates when he has to put the lid back on the glue.  Doesn’t sound deep orcomplex but that’s what makes this great.  In the world of people who are generally only an inch or two tall, this is a huge task to undertake spanning multiple universes within the Lego galaxy.

Now, the spoilery bit.  Skip the next bit if you don’t wanna know!

[su_spoiler title=”Spoiler!” style=”fancy”]The Lego world is a super imaginative reflection of what’s happening in, what is technically, our world.  Lord Business is based upon the real world character played by Will Ferrell – he owns the Lego set and his son is the one always making changes and “ruining it all”.  The little boy is the one driving Emmet and co to thwart his father’s idealistic views upon this Lego goodness. This makes sense as to how real world items get into the Lego realms and why, at times, it’s like the movie is being depicted from two different viewpoints – the rigid, by the book ideals of the father and the imaginative, child-like adventures of the son. /su_spoiler]

On the whole, this movie is a fantastic feat mixing adult and childish elements together to make a wholesome family movie.

Verdict: [usr 5]