SimonM7's forum posts

#1 Posted by SimonM7 (107 posts) - - Show Bio

@ccraft:

I think concerns that Shredder won't look Shredder-y are very valid. It hasn't really occurred to me until now that they will want to contextualise this the way they did Transformers, and there are things about the Turtles characters that literally make no sense against a "realistic" backdrop.

It kinda sucks, and you can definitely head in the complete opposite direction and embrace the comic bookyness by setting an appropriate tone where that stuff flies. The default in a post Nolan-Batman world, however, is definitely to try and play down the outlandish aspects to the point where it *appears* seamless with "reality".

It's really, really, really difficult to get a feel for where this movie is positioning itself, but with this style of foot clan, yeah, you're absolutely spot on expecting Shredder's appearance to revolve around something functional. Much in the same vein Nolan's Batman looks like a commando dude first, with considerably downplayed pointy ears, batman emblem and a cape.

I am by nature a pretty optimistic person, and I can even kinda extract things to enjoy from at least the first and third Transformers movies (there's like a moment or two in RoTF I like, too, but man that's a bloated mess), so I'm interested to see how this turns out.

#2 Posted by SimonM7 (107 posts) - - Show Bio

It didn't bother me terribly, because I have no investment in the Mandarin as a character. From a story perspective, I think they made it interesting in a way that a guy with magical rings wouldn't be, and I think it made the story relevant in a modern context. The truth is that a lot of war is fought on the level of perception, in the media, and I think the idea that this would happen is pretty scary, and resonates well as a plot point. If people are truly blaming the twist for ruining the movie, I feel like they don't appreciate what the twist meant, beyond "not magic rings" - as it was integral to the theme of fame/public persona vs anonymity.

However - I will concede, gladly, to the twist being a bummer if you love the Mandarin and you were excited by the mere prospect of having him in a movie. In that sense, I think this is an interesting "error" on Marvel's part, and one they should definitely take to heart moving forward. It's different from altering, or not quite "getting" a character, when you undermine it completely like this.

#3 Posted by SimonM7 (107 posts) - - Show Bio

This art is a bit lifeless, especially compared to her Spawn appearances, but I'm sure different artists will give her more flair.

It'll also be interesting to see if she can be... interesting. Spawn characters always felt like excuses for the McFarlane toy line to me.

#4 Edited by SimonM7 (107 posts) - - Show Bio

I like a lot of things about it, some things about it I even love - but even though I'm nowhere close to "upset" by what it turned out to be, I was certainly taken off guard. I'm gonna need some time to digest it, and I fully expect to love it when I grab the Blu Ray release.

I think for me the single most interesting thing is how authored Marvel allow their movies to be. It's even more noticeable with someone with such a specific tone and voice as Shane Black - who always bounces between the lightness of charming comedy and some pretty sudden, grim stuff - and that's super exciting. I dunno that I look forward to Thor tasting like a Game of Thrones episode, but I can immensely appreciate the fact that it's allowed to.

I read somewhere, someone put this the same way I did when I came out of the theatre. This is a Shane Black movie that happens to be about Iron Man. It's impacted by its writer/director the same way the comics are, and the same way comics can take a turn for something that suddenly makes you fall in love with a character, or away to make you not care, Marvel Studios has shown that their movies have been given the same ability. That's exciting, even if you disagree with the direction of a certain entry. It's exciting because it makes these franchises so much more dynamic, exciting, and perhaps most of all; viable in the long term.

#5 Posted by SimonM7 (107 posts) - - Show Bio

I'll agree that it was somewhat confusing, but not because the narrative itself was, but because I think the art was. I'm new'ish back to comics, and when I was into them last I was too young to keep track of artists and writers and such. Now, I know there are some industry people that are considered very talented, and the last thing I want to do is be disrespectful to a beloved artist.

Humbly, however, I'll say I think the way this was drawn made matters unnecessarily vague from time to time. I had to really look at things twice sometimes to even understand what was happening. One time on the very first page, and one time when Kate's leg is touched by our new mystery murderer guy. It wasn't indecipherable by any stretch, but after Aja's punchy, organic, minimalist-but-wonderful art, I found this to be pretty messy and obtuse in comparison.

Again, I say this with all due respect to the artist and people that like this artwork. It was, however, the weakest part of this issue to me.

#6 Posted by SimonM7 (107 posts) - - Show Bio

@mister_sensational: Thank you, that's kind of you to say!

As for a solo movie, I do agree that in the ideal circumstances, it would be possible. I think the reality of how these movies get pitched and made prevents it from turning out the way it *should* though.

I think when you're dealing with an enigmatic character, you need people around him to kind of react to - and reflect on - his characteristics, in lieu of he himself doing so. The way Wolverine played out, you never really got a deeper sense of what was going on with him, and there was merely the single notion of vengeance that propelled him. A simple enough motivation to understand intellectually, but hardly enough to feel invested.

For me, Buffy/Angel is a good example to point to. I dunno if you've watched those shows, but in short: Angel - a 250 year old vampire - plays an important role in Buffy, but he can show up, say something vague, and then take off, and we still have a story and characters to follow. Buffy as a show allows Angel to emerge, be ostensibly "deep" and enigmatic, and then disappear, leaving the audience and the other characters to kinda piece him together as a character. When I watched Buffy and heard that Angel was getting his own show, I thought for sure that'd break the character. To a degree, it "did", as Angel as a show delved deeper into the character and connected what was previously just a series of vague dots, making him more than a mystery. But, more importantly I think, Angel quickly became an ensemble show. We learned more about Angel through the way the other characters prodded him, analysed him and simply reacted to him, than his sweeping action man heroics.

If a Wolverine movie is to work - solo or otherwise - he needs to interact with other people in more nuanced ways. There's more drama in the truck scene with Rogue/Logan in the first 15-ish minutes of X-Men than in the entirety of X-Men Origins: Wolverine, because we learn things about them, and they actually impact each other as characters.

In the ideal circumstances, they would allow a Wolverine movie to "slow down" to that degree, and introduce relationships that aren't just antagonistic or shallow alliances. I feel like I can identify and categorize every "player" in the trailers to this movie, though, and they all fit neatly as basic plot devices to hurl Wolverine forward. I hope I'm wrong, but in the meantime I can't really get excited. :(

#7 Edited by SimonM7 (107 posts) - - Show Bio

All the stuff they've shown so far is stuff that was in the first solo Wolverine film. It's all "badass" and whatever, but there was no lack of badass in the first one. In fact, its biggest problem was, there was little else besides badass stuff in it, making for a supremely hollow experience, regardless of whether they would've gotten Deadpool right or not.

The thing I'm missing in these trailers is evidence that there is something to genuinely care about. If all we're getting is another angry Wolverine slashing guys with little consequence (quite literally when he was stabbing Victor/Sabretooth in the first one) then I dunno what lessons they've supposedly learned.

Frankly, I don't even know if Wolverine being the lone star of a movie is even possible. I feel like a driven angry Wolverine is pretty one-note and boring to watch, unless the story is about how he gets there. The X-Men trilogy - say what you want about Last Stand - had a very compelling arc for the character. He got to be snarky, selfish and dismissive, but ultimately found himself caring about other people, the school, and even found a kind of leader position when Charles was gone. In Wolverine, he barely changes, and then the bullet undoes even that - whatever it amounted to.

I think he just plays better off other people. Hell, Hugh Jackman has range, and he's naturally sympathetic and charming. It's downright unfair to just have him grimacing and stabbing dudes for 2 hours.

#8 Posted by SimonM7 (107 posts) - - Show Bio

I picked up the 0.1 and #1 of this, and the inclusion of Iron Man has put me off more than it has drawn me in. It doesn't help that everything has this Mass Effect flavour, either, because while I understand that it has legions of fans, I was really soured on the series even before 3 came along. It all seems to play a bit too much to what they reckon people already like, plugging Iron Man in like Batman/Wolverine to boost it, when he only really serves to cripple the sense of unexplored territory. I guess it's just not half as "cosmic" as I was hoping, and as a virgin to those aspects of the Marvel universe it has severely under-delivered for me. I may check back in if it proves to get going, but I really think Iron Man is tethering it in a way that I'll continue to find it disappointingly familiar.

#9 Edited by SimonM7 (107 posts) - - Show Bio

I was initially worried when the cast grew, but now it's grown so far beyond what you're even trying to achieve with a smaller ensemble movie, into what I can only assume is a very different style of storytelling, in terms of super hero movies.

It's definitely not uncommon for movies, generally, to have casts this big, and if you treat these characters less like stories in themselves, and more as players in a larger story - who just happen to be super powered - it makes a lot more sense. I think the main worry at this point is how randomly this movie seems to have become significantly bigger than was originally planned. If it wasn't thought out properly beforehand, but rather a story that has now been stretched to accommodate a bajillion random cameos, then that's problematic to say the least.

I will say, however, that the strength of the original X-Men films was - among other things - its cavalier attitude to the powers that these characters have. There were rarely closeups of a certain power being used, and the fact that they're superhuman was almost played down to a level where it didn't seem strange or even noteworthy, because to them, the characters themselves, it wasn't. A movie like this doesn't need to give each character a Wrestling intro style setup, they can play their parts and their role in the story can be established the same way any other movie does it. It's a different climate nowadays among moviegoers, too - you don't need to sell them on the fundamental concept of super powers any more, and that means you can make less of a fuss about it.

As for Halle Berry, I don't mind her acting skills per se. Her on screen presence just isn't even remotely commanding enough to pull these roles off. Her action face makes her look confused and annoyed, and her tension face is pure deer-in-headlights. I recall Fox throwing the name Rutina Wesley around, which frankly would make absolutely zero difference. So, hey, at least we're not missing out anyway.

#10 Edited by SimonM7 (107 posts) - - Show Bio

Yeah, stand alone for sure. I have to say, if SHIELD wasn't the show they're making, I think Daredevil would've been a perfect fit for serialised storytelling. Split between super heroics/lawyer stuff and relationships would've made total sense.