A Movie Entry – Thoughts on Avengers: Infinity War

or, “Oh…snap!”

(also, spoiler alert)

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A Movie Entry – 10 Things I Learned from Avengers: Infinity War

So “Daddy issues is the true universal constant” isn’t on this list because I’ve already learned that from previous MCU movies, although I will say that is reinforced here.

1) Asgard has rabbits but apparently not raccoons.
2) Rocket either really likes Thor, or really likes weapons.
3) Vision is fully-functional.
4) The Hulk has never known fear, and is terrible at dealing with it.
5) Tony Stark, a noted genius, remains remarkably short-sighted when it comes to anticipating what other people will say, do, think or feel.
6) The Cloak of Levitation is a sentient being.
7) Bruce and Black Widow still apparently have some chemistry between them.
8) There is always time for quips.
9) Captain Marvel can be reached with a circa 1990s pager.
10) Dark Helmet was right – “Evil will always triumph because good is dumb.”

A Movie Entry – 10 Things I Learned From Black Panther

1) Yep, the universal constant is daddy issues.
2) Team MCU can create a well-rounded sympathetic villain not named Loki.
3) Not only is Wakanda awesome, everyone in Wakanda is totally kick-ass.
4) Princess Shuri is far and away the best Disney princess.
5) Apparently Agent Ross was the only non-Avenger paying attention to Black Panther during “Civil War.”
6) Keeping ancient traditions isn’t a bad thing, but maybe it’s not good to have a traditional physical fight actually determine rulership.
7) I like all the protagonists so much I actually can’t decide which one I like best, and that is quite the compliment.
8) Vibranium is practically magic.
9) Team MCU can still create a mostly self-contained solo movie, which I appreciate.
10) Team MCU can also create a mostly serious movie, which I also appreciate.

Other thoughts – this is one of the best movies, if not the best movie, in the MCU catalogue. It’s primarily a political and family drama with some kick-ass action sequences. There’s not a lot of levity and certainly no quips or zingers, but that would have not worked in this movie. I hope the MCU has some more of these in waiting.

A Movie Entry – To Borrow from Mel Brooks Again

“God willing we’ll all meet again in Spaceballs 2: The Search for More Money.”

Hollywood is going into franchise overload. I’m not surprised. “Avengers: Endgame” has apparently made all the money and as of this writing hasn’t technically been released to general audiences yet. But this trend is so aggressive that I am beginning to understand the frustration people who don’t like superhero movies experience when all the upcoming movies appear to be nothing but superhero movies. And yet while studios try to ride the lightning that is the success of the MCU, they are still completely missing the foundation of that success; to wit, make movies people want to see and then plan out some sequels.

Continue reading A Movie Entry – To Borrow from Mel Brooks Again

A Movie Entry – 10 Things I Learned from Spider-man: Homecoming

1) Tony Stark is the most irresponsible person in the entire MCU and is self-aware enough to know if his comrades found out he recruited an underage teen and gave him a weaponized murder-suit, they would kick his smug armored ass so hard Howard Stark would feel it.
2) Peter Parker is terrible at hiding his secret identity.
3) Adrian Toomes is more threatening without the Vulture suit than with the Vulture suit.
4) The Vulture actually can use the Z-axis to his advantage in a fight.
5) Happy Hogan is terrible at security.
6) Tony Stark isn’t much better at security.
7) Spider-man needs a lot more practice at this.
8) For all the flak critics gave Sam Raimi for a “campy” Spider-man, a Spider-man movie works much better as mostly comedy/action and some drama than a humorless action drama.
9) Other British MCU actors should take accent lessons from Tom Holland.
10) With great power may come great responsibility, but it still doesn’t grant great social skills.

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Storytelling Successes – Wonder Woman (Part 2 of 2)

Continued from Part 1 –

The Main Attraction:
1) Character – As an origin story, this success of this movie is entirely dependent  on how engaged the audience is with Diana and therefore Diana’s story. Shockingly this seemingly common sense bit of storytelling is lost on many contemporary film makers / studios (who then wonder why their big budget tent-pole blockbuster failed harder than the 2017 Cleveland Browns).

Continue reading Storytelling Successes – Wonder Woman (Part 2 of 2)

A Comic Book/Movie Entry – 10 Things I Learned from the “Wonder Woman” Movie

1) WB/DC can make a good superhero movie!
2) WB/DC can make a superhero movie in which the superhero actually wants to be a superhero!
3) Superhero movies with a female lead can be awesome! (Which I already knew, there just hadn’t been one to demonstrate that to the world and movie executives)
4) Major deviations from the source material are acceptable if those deviations serve the narrative.
5) That Zack Snyder aesthetic sense and love of CGI works better in the hands of a director who is not Zack Snyder.
6) A movie with a female lead, featuring an entirely female cast for the first act, can be shot without pandering to the male gaze.
7) Yes, a model turned actress who did a stint in the Israeli army was absolutely the right choice to embody Wonder Woman.
8) Etta Candy’s fourth-wall winking observation about Diana’s attempt to Clark Kent is spot-on.
9) I want a sequel. I have no idea how that would work with the timeline, but I don’t care.
10) Your move, Marvel. Why did I have to wait another two years for Captain Marvel? Where’s my Black Widow movie (and Atomic Blonde doesn’t count)?

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