Wednesday, 28 April 2010

District 9 owes plenty to Bad Taste

I admit, I wasn't a fan of District 9 but I have been a fan of the films of Peter Jackson ever since Bad Taste(one of Jackson's first features) was released back in 1987. Forgetting that District 9 was produced by Jackson, I feel it's styling and some of its feel are a homage to the 23 year old comedic sci-fi.

I wouldn't have given life to this way of thinking though, until a recent friends tweet triggered me to reassess why I didn't enjoy District 9 in the way I thought I would. I can remember seeing the trailers and had an impression of a taunt and dramatic sci-fi thriller but the movie, or at least my impression of it , was darkly comic. I didn't connect with the main character, Wikus van de Merwe and found him irritating rather than endearing.

My lasting impression is that I was misled, to a degree, what to expect from District 9 by its trailers. I watched the movie feeling almost cheated and wondering aimlessly if this was honest film making, which I admit is rather harsh. But where Bad Taste showed it's honesty of intention from the outset, District 9 had its potential clouded by some PR smoke and mirrors.

Now that I know what to expect from District 9, a second viewing would be worth taking in to try and get an untainted experience and maybe appreciate other parts of the film that I may have been distracted from.

Tuesday, 27 April 2010

Can't stop the A-Train

The Boys - The Name Of The Game collects issues #1-6

Kick-Ass - Book One collects issues #1-8(9 with Director's cut issue)

    Both Kick-Ass and The Boys have renewed my belief in comic books as a unique medium that can still be a rewarding to read. I picked both up without prior knowledge of what to expect, although I had seen Darick Robertson's artwork in Transmetropolitan, but am so glad I did.

    I wouldn't hesitate in recommending both these titles to anyone that has grown tired of the standard fare that has come from Marvel & DC of late. But I'd also feel that these wonderful titles have something to offer anyone that likes their drama mixed with a wicked sense of humour. I laughed at Wee Hughie's predicament within the first few pages of The Boys first chapter, 'The Name of the Game' and I dare you not to find it absurdly funny and a very good hook into the story.

    Although both Kick-Ass & The Boys have their own pace and style, they do share a very rare commodity in comic book titles of late - there is a sense of care and warmth shown to the characters in each title and the sense of uncertainty to what will happen next is magnified by the great writing and artwork in each title. There maybe some throw-away deaths or jibs & blunt language but the stories allow the characters a breath of emotion that draws you slowly into their world and understanding of their condition.

    I will be reading the second collection of The Boys, 'Get Some' next. I suggest you get reading...

    Monday, 12 April 2010

    Week 16 in subspace-urbia

    What with a PC outage, 6 days in a cellular black spot and looking after a kitten(post-op), my last few weeks have been tough on my gaming time. I have only played We Rule on my iPhone these past few weeks, along with some recent Words with friends. The break from console gaming(and cellular blackout) has allowed me to start and finish a book and catch a so-so movie.

    I'm hoping to see the Kick-Ass movie very soon and will aim to post something about the comic book & movie then. What I will say about the graphic novel, that collects the first book, is that it has restored my faith in the comic book as a interesting medium. It has been a very long time since a comic book has drawn me in so quickly, as Kick-Ass did. Even if your not a fan of Mark Millars, I would still suggest you put those doubts aside and pick up the graphic novel - even if it's a borrow.

    To my regular readers, a quick apology for the lack of activity here of late. But until I am in receipt of my MacBook Pro, hopefully later this week or early next, I have very little access to a stable platform to blog from. Normal service will resume, soon enough.