Posts tagged “books

X-Men take on One Million Moms

US conservative group One Million Moms have launched a campaign against DC and Marvel asking them to stop featuring gay characters in their comic books.

Gay characters have been included in comic books for years, but later this month, in Astonishing X-Men issue 51, Northstar will marry his long term partner Kyle.  Though this won’t be the first time a same sex couple has gotten married in comic books, it will be the first time it’s happened in the Marvel universe.  This, teamed with DC’s decision to make Green Lantern gay when he is reinvented in the New 52, has sparked controversy with the conservative group One Million Moms, who think that by showing children positive representations of gay people they will grow up to think that it is okay to be gay, which the group believes ‘is a sin’.

‘Children desire to be just like superheroes. Children mimic superhero actions and even dress up in costumes to resemble these characters as much as possible. Can you imagine little boys saying, ‘I want a boyfriend or husband like X-Men?’’  A common misconception with comics is that they are for kids.  There are some aimed at children, but not all of them are and some are pretty dark and have sex scenes.  Yet somehow the group has no problem exposing their children to this, providing it’s with members of the opposite sex.  Every form of media show relationships between men and women, yet most little boys don’t say things like ‘I want a girlfriend or wife’ and that’s because they are little boys not little adults, they want the heroes superpowers not their lovers.

One Million Moms recently launched a similar campaign to stop Toys R Us stocking the issue of Archie Comics Life with Archie were Kevin Keller and his partner get marriage.  However, their plan failed and attention brought on by the groups boycott may even have helped sales as the issue sold out.  Hearing of their campaign against Marvel and DC, some comic book writers contacted the group on Twitter.  Dan Slott, author of Spider-Man, sent them a message acknowledging the effects of their previous failure ‘Dear @1milmoms, thank you for the boycotts. They increase sales as people buy extra copies to spite you. PLEASE boycott my book too. :-)’.  Kurt Busiek, another of Marvel’s writers, took it even further by questioning the group itself ‘One Million Moms: There aren’t a million of them and their board is mostly men. If they lie about who they are, they’ll lie about anything’.

In their statement, One Million Moms says that featuring gay characters in comics ‘is ridiculous! Why do adult gay men need comic superheroes as role models? They want to indoctrinate impressionable young minds by placing these gay characters on pedestals in a positive light. These companies are heavily influencing our youth by using children’s superheroes to desensitise and brainwash them into thinking that a gay lifestyle choice is normal and desirable’.  It’s clear that the group, who are a Christian group, hold a strong religious view, which seems backwards in today’s society, which, as Marvel Comics editor-in-chief Axel Alonso said in a statement to Newsarama, is what Marvel try to represent.

‘For over 70 years, Marvel’s comics have reflected the world outside your window and Astonishing X-Men #50 carries on that tradition. We’re proud to create stories that are not only relevant to the issues facing a modern audience but that also explore these nuanced subjects in a compelling manner. We’ve planned the release of this comic for over a year but the recent discussion of gay marriage, spurred by the comments of President Obama, makes the release of Astonishing X-Men #50 even more timely. The passionate discourse between our fans on both sides of this matter shows that we’ve struck a chord with our millions of fans around the world.’

Issue 51 of Astonishing X-Men will be release later this month, on the 20th of June.  While it doesn’t seem like One Million Moms will convince Marvel to ‘change and cancel all plans of homosexual superhero characters’ like their letters demand, it will be interesting to see what effect they have on sales.  Having gay characters in the media can be really positive for young gay people, so stamping them out would be a huge step backwards.  Hopefully, this issue will sell out and One Million Moms will learn that their hate is only inspiring people to go against them.

What do you think?  Are you going to pick up Astonishing X-Men issue 51?  Do you enjoy seeing representatives of various minority groups, not just gay people, in comics?  Would you prefer if comics avoided dealing with real issues?  Let me know by voting and leaving a comment below.  Also, please subscribe and, if you liked this post, click the like button.

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Psycho TV series ‘Bates Motel’ in development

For those of you that thought showering was just a time to wind down and get clean, you are about to get a rude awakening as Psycho returns for yet another instalment, but this time it’s television.

Even if you’ve never seen the 1960 film Psycho, its sequels, the prequel, its last attempt at a TV spinoff or the 1998 remake, you probably know about the infamous shower scene and that’s because the film, especially that scene, is a horror classic.  Show me one other film that had to be shot in black and white to avoid being ‘too gory’, a concept which is lost these days.

The original film is about, momma’s boy, Norman Bates who runs a motel with his mother.  Then an unsuspecting shower user comes to stay and the rest is Hollywood history.  Two sequels followed, completely unrelated to the two sequels of the book the original film was based on, then came a prequel, that looked at Bates’ teenage years, followed by a spinoff were the motel is reopened and murders start again and finally, in 1998, a nearly shot for shot remake of the original film was made.  The new TV series will be called Bates Motel, the same name used for the spinoff, and will once again examine the teenage years of Norman Bates.

Though still in the early stages of development the show is said to give a close look at how Norman became a psycho.  The story will show him from childhood and through his teenage years, providing the pilot gets picked up.  Viewers will get to see how his mother, Norma, and her lover damaged Norman, putting him on the path to become a killer.  Last time a Psycho show was proposed, the pilot wasn’t picked up and it was instead turned into a TV movie spinoff.  Hopefully this version doesn’t suffer the same fate as it will be interesting to see were, in 2012, they will take the story.  It’s no secret that movies are scarier these days than they were in the past, how will this change the story?

What do you think?  Would you like to see this show get made?  Are you a fan of the original movie?  Have you ever read the book?  Let me know by voting a leaving a comment below, also don’t forget to follow/subscribe and, if you enjoyed this post, click the like button.


Quest to Join Pottermore

Though both the film and book series of Harry Potter are over, the story lives on and not just in the memories and hearts of the fans, Harry’s hitting the web.

Pottermore is a site where fans of the series can go to rediscover the stories as well as read additional information that J.K. Rowling has never revealed before.  It will also distribute Harry Potter eBooks and audio books.  This will be the first time the series has been, legally, turned into eBooks.  To a Potter fan the website is very exciting, but it won’t be officially launched until October.  However, each day for seven days, five of which have already past, a clue has been put on the site.  The people who solve the clue will be able to go to a different page to search for the ‘magic quill’.  If they find this, they will be one of the lucky few that get to enter early and help shape the site.

Every weekday I wake up at half eight in the morning to walk my dog, but today the first thing I did was turn on the computer and check Pottermore.  The clue had not been posted yet.  I only learned how to try gain access to Pottermore last night, after the clue had already been and gone, so this was my first real try at getting in.  As I got ready to leave, I refreshed the page many times, but still no clue.  I returned from my walk, which takes about an hour, and there was still nothing.  Through some quick googling, I found out that a blog had given the exact time the clue would go up on day 3, which was two days ago.  As the day went by, it was announced that, in my time zone, the clue would be posted at some point between half four pm and eight pm.  I didn’t trust it so I continued to refresh the page, basically every few seconds, until finally, at around six o’clock, the clue pops up.

‘What is the house number of the headquarters of the Order of the Phoenix, then multiply you answer by 21’, I almost had a heart attack when I realised the clue had appeared.  Knowing that, since it was day five, the clue would be related to the Order of the Phoenix, I had the book at hand.  However, I didn’t need it as that was actually one of the questioned at suspected and even said to my friend.  Once I had the answer calculated, I struggled with my dad’s iPad trying to get the URL in, but it didn’t seem to want to work.  My friend, seeing my frustration, used her iPhone to go to the URL.  She handed me the phone which I end discarded as the iPad finally worked.  I was brought to a page to search for the quill which was in such an obvious play that I thought it was just an example of what to look out for, but I clicked it and it said I had successfully found the quill.  Also my friend, using the iPhone, which I’d so mindlessly dropped on the bed, also found the quill.

We were given usernames and a few hours later we both received e-mails to complete the process.  Now my friend, Amy, and I have joined the ranks of people who get to see Pottermore before it officially opens.  If you are trying to solve to gain access I wish you luck.  Just keep on refreshing.  In completely unrelated news, Amy got accepted to DCU today and is probably going to kill me for putting this in.

What do you think?  Will Amy be popular among her new class?  Is DCU lucky to have her?  Was getting into Pottermore a bigger achievement than DCU?  Let me know by voting and leaving a comment below.


Breaking Dawn Trailer Review

Some say that vampires shouldn’t sparkle in the sunlight; others say that they shouldn’t be overly protective, possessive and display signs of obsessive stalking, but those people should simply be happy that the series is coming to an end.  However, there are millions of Twilight fans and they’re facing the end of the series, well actually the last film was split in two so there’s still a while left.  Part one comes out on the 18th of November 2011 and part two will be released on the 16th of November 2012.

Today, fans were given a glimpse of the film as the first full length trailer was released.  The trailer really pushes the romantic side to the story, basically excluding the darker themes and focusing mainly on the wedding and the guests getting there invitations, plus Bella and Edward having sex in various locations, wonder if they’ll be able to keep a PG-13 rating, which results in Bella becoming pregnant.  I think it goes without saying that this will be one of the least ‘boyfriend friendly’ movies in the Twilight series.

If you’re familiar with the book you may be wondering where the split will be.  It has been said by both Wyck Godrey, producer, and Melissa Rosenberg, the screenwriter, that it will probably be one movie were Bella is human and one with her as a vampire, though the decision is ultimately up to Bill Condon, the director.  Godrey had the idea of shooting the second one, with vampire Bella, in 3D to differentiate between human and vampire.  Though 3D has become an annoying trend in Hollywood, it’s nice to see it being used to actually aid in the telling of a story.

Fan’s will most likely love the trailer, but it is very one sided.  The more romantic elements are shown, the wedding and the jealous Jacob love triangle, where as the darker mythological part, a woman being impregnated by a vampire, is only briefly hinted at, despite the pregnancy playing such a large role in the book.  Though the actually movie will be more balanced, it seems that the trailer was made to give the audience and over romantic view, thus drawing in the girls and striking fear into the hearts of the boyfriends.

What do you think?  Will Breaking Dawn be rated above PG-13?  Is the trailer boy friendly?  Let me know by voting and leaving a comment below.  Also don’t forget to subscribe.


Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows

In 2009 Sherlock Holmes proved that he could still draw in a crowd, but will the sequel be able to live up to the first?

Sherlock Holmes is a familiar name to most people, but how many really know him?  Do people still read the books that made him famous or watch the films that bring him to life?  Judging by the praise that Guy Richie’s 2009 adaptation got, it’s safe to say that Holmes’s fan base is as vast as ever.  The movie used elements from various Sherlock Holmes stories, even going as far as bringing in Irene Adler, who is a massive fan favourite despite only appearing in one story (A Scandal in Bohemia).  Adler will return in the sequel, but just to tie up some loose ends.

The sequel takes inspiration from Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s story The Final Problem.  It is this tale that introduces the evil Professor Moriarty.  Originally intended to be the final Sherlock Holmes story, Doyle ends it by killing off both Holmes and Moriarty.  Complaints by fans led Doyle to bring Holmes back by revealing that Holmes had defeated Moriarty and faked his own death to prevent Moriarty’s henchmen coming after him.  The plot of the movie will take elements from the story; it will not be an exact translation.  However, which parts they are keeping is still unclear.  They wouldn’t kill Holmes would they?

Mycroft Holmes, brother of the infamous Sherlock, will be played by Stephen Fry.  Mycroft was briefly mentioned in the 2009 film and has been in many of the books.  Mycroft has even better deducing skills than Sherlock, but he lacks the drive and energy to physically go out and solve a case.  His role in the movie will be to assist Sherlock and Watson in outsmarting Moriarty.  Also aiding Sherlock and Watson is a gypsy called Sim, who is played by Noomi Rapace.

This film will show off Holmes ability as a master of disguise.  Sherlock will even go as far as dressing like a woman, which was, Sherlock Holmes star, Robert Downey Jr.’s idea.  This should add to the comic relief that made the first one so entertaining.  The movie is set to hit cinemas, in America, on the 16th of December and on the 25th of December, in Europe.

What do you think?  Are you excited about the sequel?  Should they kill of Holmes?  Let me know by voting and leaving a comment below.  Also don’t forget to subscribe.


The Three Musketeers

One muska two muska three musketeers.

Originally a series of books, The Three Musketeers has since been made into a film over twenty times.  The author of the original books, Alexandre Dumas, drew inspiration from an earlier book called Mémoires de Monsieur d’Artagnan.  In this book d’Artagnan first meets the king’s musketeers; Athos Porthos and Aramis.  Also present in the book is Milady de Winter, the antagonist of the first Musketeers book.  However, her background was changed significantly.

Alexandre Dumas’s book, The Three Musketeers, was originally serialised, in France, between March on July 1844 under the name Les Trois Mousquetaires.  The plot follows d’Artagnan who travels to Paris to join the musketeers.  When he is arrested along with the three musketeers they join forces to escape.  D’Artagnan falls in love with a woman called Constance and encounters Athos ex-wife Milady de Winter, who has been paid to kill the Duke of Buckingham who is having an affair with the Queen of France.  The musketeers, and d’Artagnan, must then defeat Milady before it’s too late.

On the 14th of October the latest Three Musketeers film will arrive at cinemas in stunning, and pointless, 3D.  The basic elements of the book are there, by which I mean the characters and the role that the characters play, but the plot is not exactly the same.  Normally things like that bother me, but with this being the twenty somethingth Musketeers movie, I think changes may just be a good thing.  Then again, a loyal fan may want to see the classic tale retold in 3D.  In this version, d’Artagnan joins forces with the three musketeers, who were famous but are currently down on their luck, to stop Milady and her employer from taking over France and starting a war.  As I said, it’s not the exact same plot, but it does have a lot of similar plot points.

The three musketeers will be played by Matthew Macfadyen, Ray Stevenson and Luke Evans.  Logan Lerman plays d’Artagnan and Milla Jovovich portrays Milady de Winter.  Paul W.S. Anderson, Jovovich’s Husband, is directing the film and congratulations to them for finally making a movie that their daughter can watch, but probably won’t want to.

Though it does not follow the exact plot of the book, the movie looks good.  It mixes action with comedy, but in a way that keeps the tone fairly serious.  It has a great range of actors and then Orlando Bloom for some reason.  The delivery of the lines is also great, it’s not always easy especially with one liners, but they appear to have done it with neatly.  Like most movie goers, I can’t see the point in having the 3D, but it is still the trend in Hollywood so we’ll just have to put up with the goofy glasses.  All things considered, this movie may be entertaining for an action/adventure fan, or for someone who is familiar with the source material, but if you don’t fit those categories you probably should give it a miss.

What do you think?  Is the plot being changed a good thing or a bad thing?  Do you like the cast?  Let me know by voting and leaving a comment below.  Also don’t forget to subscribe.


Batman: The Dark Knight Rises Bane Promo Picture

A lot of movie goers will have seen Bane in the 1997 Joel Schumacher film, Batman and Robin, but way he was portrayed in the movie is far from his original comic book persona.  The bane of the film is a mindless bodyguard for Poison Ivy, in the comics, as well as strength, Bane has a keen mind.  He uses this mind to work independently to fight against Batman.  In the comics he is the only man to ever have ‘broke the bat’ which basically means he put Batman in a wheelchair.  He also once thought that he and Batman, Bruce Wayne, shared the same father, but it turned out he was wrong.

Now why am I telling you any of this?  Bane is going to be one of the villains in the final instalment of Christopher Nolan’s Batman trilogy.  From what I’ve heard, this version will be much more loyal to the source material than the previous movie was.  Tom Hardy was cast as Bane and I’m pretty confident in Nolan’s casting abilities so I’m sure he’ll be great.  The first promo picture of Bane was released.  It doesn’t really show much, but it does give an idea of the look they’re going for.  Check it out.

What do you think?  Let me know by voting and leaving a comment below.


Classic Movies, Serious Illnesses and Almost Funny Pictures

It’s a strange feeling when you realise you don’t have to apologise.  I’ve struggled and pushed myself to write on this blog everyday for over eight months.  There have been bumps, college work has gotten in the way, but it has been a really great experience and I’m hoping to continue on with it.  However, the last two days have no posts.  I know that I will most likely fix this with a trick I’ve picked up, but for now there is a two day gap.  I was sick and actually completely forgot about the outside world, but I’m not apologising.

Recently the blog has been a bit of a mess and I am putting that write, but with two deadlines left to meet and the decision about which college to go to next year, it is hard to get back on track.  Anyway enough of that, let’s get to today’s post.  Last night I saw a movie that I’d never seen before so I thought I’d talk about it today, also it fits into my neglected ‘classics’ tab.  Yeah I remember promising to watch Jaws, but really who has the time these days?

The movie I watched was Breakfast at Tiffany’s.  I’d wanted to see it for a while actually.  I had to read the book last year and I really wanted to see the differences between the mediums.  Though I wasn’t a huge fan of the novel, I’m still going to have to say it was much better.  For anyone who hasn’t read the book, or seen the movie, I’m going to explain the plot.  Writer falls in love with a crazy woman.  The plot has also been used in films like Misery.  Okay maybe it’s not the exact same thing, but Misery was also a book before it became a movie.

Naturally the book goes into more detail, but it was actually details added by the film that I found annoying.  Why make the narrator, who they’ve also named, a prostitute?  Maybe it’s just me, but it seems a little unnecessary, plus they named him Paul.  The writer in Misery is also called Paul, just saying.  I also noticed how racist the portrayal of Mr Yunioshi was, but it’s safe to say that this mistake has been pointed out many times before.  I really did think he was played by an Asian actor though, it was a very racist portrayal, but I thought it was done by an Asian man.  It was not, it was an American actor and it’s one of the biggest falls of the film.

The ending and other plot points were changed to make the film more Hollywood appropriate.  I was really disappointed by the new ending actually.  I liked the whole ‘in a bar years later wondering’ aspect of the book and I would have liked to see that in the movie.  This is the first film I’ve ever seen with actress Audrey Hepburn and I’m just going to point out that Truman Capote, the author of the book, wanted them to cast Marilyn Monroe, but she turned it down.  Monroe was probably a lot closer to Golightly in personality, but I think there is something to be said about playing a part that is so different from who you are and playing it well.  So for that reason I’m glad Hepburn got the role.

I think the book is much better and found the movie a bit boring.  Then again I am a horror movie guy at heart.  What did you think?  Did you prefer the book or the film?  Are you glad Hepburn played the lead?  Let me know by voting and leaving a comment below.


Songs That Inspire greatness

I’m really stressed out at the moment, because college is nearly over and I have millions of thinks to do.  I know that lately my blogging has been, lets just say, odd.  I don’t really have time to write a big post today, but I’m kind of obsessed with Scott Pilgrim at the moment and I found out that the whole thing was inspired by a song called Scott Pilgrim.  The song is by a band called Plumtree.  Don’t get me wrong, the comic is not just based on the song alone, but it’s just crazy to think how big an effect songs can have.  So anyway sorry about the lack or normality lately, enjoy the song and let me know if you know of any other great stories that where inspired by songs.  Also just a note if you watch the Scott Pilgrim movie or read the comic you’ll notice that Scott ocasionally wears a Plumtree t-shirt, which is a cool tribute and the song featured on the movie soundtrack.


Favourite Superheroes and Villains

 

Today I saw a list of the top 100 superheroes.  I didn’t look at which one was number, because I actually want to go down the list and see them all.  While I probably won’t know some of them, I’m still curious to see were my favourite heroes placed on the list.  I then start thinking about making my own list.  I remember how long my 100 things about me post took so I’m not going to do 100.  Instead I’m going to stick with five, but I’m also going to include my top five villains.  I’m already debating on the order so I’m just going to leave the order random. 

Anyway, let’s start with the heroes.

 

Superman; I know it sounds boring, but I’ve always been a fan.  The first comic I read was actually a Superman comic so I guess that has a lot to do with it.  Some people say he’s too powerful, but I don’t see the problem with that I don’t want to back a weak superhero, besides Krytonite seems to be readily available in the DC universe, plus he’s affected by magic.

The Flash; I just really like the character.  I have for years.  I remember my friend even recorded the movie for me when we were kids.  What’s cooler than being the faster man in the world?  Nothing, that’s what.

Nightcrawler; It all started in 2003 when the second X-Men movie came out.  He was one of the new characters and I just thought he was really cool.  Ever since he’s just been one of my favourite superheroes.  His powers and the flaws in his powers are just so well thought out.  Then again, after seeing The Fly, the remake not the original, I don’t think I’m ever going to want to teleport (no one ends up with a fly head in that version, for people who have never seen it).

Batman; You’ve got to love a spoiled rich kid that uses his money to fight crime.  Big fan of gadgets, pure and simple.  I think Batman is one of those heroes that everyone knows about whether they want to or not.  Who doesn’t know his back story?

Iron Man; I generally prefer my superheroes with superpowers, but, to avoid sounding prejudice to non-powered heroes, I’ve included another.  Also, the 2008 Iron Man film was great and I’m looking forward to seeing him in the upcoming Avengers movie.

Now on to the villains

Dark Phoenix; I was actually going to put Phoenix in the hero section, but I realised I like her better as a villain.  She wasn’t done justice in the third X-Men movie, but it wasn’t completely horrible.  Her storyline is a pretty interesting part of the X-Men comic and animated series’.

Black Cat; Forget Batman, Black Cat is the real anti-hero of the comic world.  Her philosophy is that she is the Black Cat and Felicia Hardy is just a character she plays.

Juggernaut; I just always remember him from the cartoon when I was a kid.  He just stuck with me so he made the list.  He too was not done justice in X-Men 3.

Venom; Definitely deserves to be on anyone’s list of favourite villains.  It’s kind of like Dark Phoenix when I think about it.  The idea that an external force can just sort of takeover, or at least influence you, is really interesting.  Also, both he and Phoenix have infected more than one person.

Doomsday; Though I was let down my how Smallville ended Doomsday’s storyline, the character was done very well.  However, the comic book version is very different, for one thing there is no Davis Bloome.  I do think that adding the human side worked for the show, but either way the villain that killed Superman should be on everyone’s favourite super villains list.

Do you agree/disagree?  Let me know by voting and leaving a comment below.


Thor Movie Review

Marvel’s latest pre-avengers film hit cinemas recently.  Was it all just a mindless action flick or does it also have a good plot?

The movie takes place in three worlds; Asgard (Thor’s world), Jotunheim (a land populated by ice giants) and Earth (the place where you’re computer currently is).  Thor (Chris Hemsworth) is banished to |Earth after he leads his friends into battle with the ice giants, thus breaking the peace.  Thor lands on Earth only to be run over by scientist Jane Foster (Natalie Portman) and her research team.  Knowing that she’s onto something, S.H.I.E.L.D agents confiscate Jane’s research.  They also seal off the area around Thor’s hammer, Mjolnir, which you may remember from an after the credits scene of Iron Man 2.  Back in Asgard Thor’s father Odin becomes sick and falls into a coma and Thor’s brother Loki (Tom Hiddleston) takes over, with a confusing plan that doesn’t make all that much sense.

The graphics were great, especially the weather effects.  There are plenty of explosions to satisfy action fans.  I liked how a large amount of time was given to show how Thor got banished, but after the movie was over I couldn’t help but think that time could have been better spent.  The actors were great.  Natalie Portman and Chris Hemsworth were excellently cast and the two have so much chemistry together.  Ultimately, the audience is left dissatisfied at the end.  I went with two other people and they both agreed that the end was disappointing.  This disappointment was increased when I told them the news that Portman would not be appearing in The Avengers movie.

The movie differs from the original comic series.  Portman’s character, Jane Foster, has been given a modernised role.  In the comics she is a nurse, which made sense because Thor was trapped in the body or a doctor named Donald Blake.  In the movie Thor gets to keep his own identity when he arrives on Earth.  I think this decision really paid off as much of the humour comes from his lack of knowledge of Earth customs.  The name Donald Blake is actually used in the movie briefly so keep an ear out.

While the ending wasn’t exactly fulfilling, the rest of the journey was exciting and full of action.  Some of the plot was hard to follow; it kind of felt like it was rushed or just not thought through enough.  The actors have been signed on to reprise their roles in two more Thor films, which will hopefully be made.  I’m not entirely sure how the ending will fight in with the Avengers film, but if they can find a way to bring Captain America into it, despite that fact that he should be an old man in the time period the movie is based in, I’m sure they’ll fit Thor in too.  Just a note, there is a scene after the credits, I missed it and if you do too you can read about it online.

What do you think?  Do you like the changes they’ve made to the plot?  Did you like the ending?  Let me know by voting and leaving a comment below.


Stephenie Meyer’s The Host is coming to the big screen

With the end of the Twilight saga in sight men everywhere can take a sigh of relief that their girlfriends can no longer drag them to see another film based on a Stephenie Meyer book.  Well actually it’s not over yet.

The Host, Meyer’s other book, is about to be adapted into a movie and Saoirse Ronan is going to star in it.  Twilight fans will no doubt be delighted by the news, as the last film in the Twilight saga will be hitting cinemas soon.  However, following in Harry Potter’s shoes, Breaking Dawn will be split into two movies.

The Host does not actually take part in the Twilight universe.  It has its own unique story and is completely free of vampires.  The book tells the tale of an Earth that has been invaded by a race of aliens that take over host bodies and, in time, erase everything about the person and take over the body.  Although most of the world has been taken over, there are still rebels fighting against the alien invasion.  Wanderer, one of the aliens called souls, takes over the body of a rebel named Melanie Stryder, but is overwhelmed by the human mind and quickly learns she is not fully in control.  She grows fond of Melanie’s memories and searches to discover if Melanie’s loved ones are still alive.

As with Twilight, the film will follow the same plot as the book.  Though I’m not a fan of the book, it seems to me that Ronan does not fit the character description very well.  This isn’t uncommon with book to movie adaptations, but the age difference between Ronan and the character leads me to believe that the change was made to try maintain the young girl audience that Twilight brought in.  Ronan is 17 years old and the character is 20, which would probably have made the love story aspect a little mature for a 12 or 13 year old girl to understand.

I have to admit that the plot does sound interesting.  I think it’s clever that Meyer uses the idea of aliens taking over your body to explore body image.  The characters in the book are lucky to even have a body and it is shown that people took them for granted before losing them.  The book has received much praise, not nearly as much as Twilight, but at least feminists haven’t complained about this one, like they did about Twilight.  A release date for the film has yet to be announced, but perhaps the movie will cause a sequel to the book to be written.  Right now The Host is a standalone book and the end does leave it open for a sequel.

What do you think?  Is Saoirse Ronan right for the part?  Should Stephenie Meyer write a sequel to The Host?  Let me know by voting and leaving a comment below.  Also don’t forget to subscribe.


Cowboys and Aliens

When I first put up the ‘westerns’ category, I had no idea if I’d ever get to use it again, yet here I am using it for the third time in five months.  Is this a sign that westerns are making a comeback?  I hope so.

Cowboys and Aliens will hit American cinemas on the 29th of July and then waddle its way over to Irish, and UK, cinemas on the 19th of August.  If you’re a comic fan, you might think that the name sounds familiar, and you’d be right about that.  However, the name is one of the only things that the film has in common with the 2006 graphic novel that it’s based on.  Producer, Robert Orci, has said that they didn’t want fans of the comics to feel like they’d already seen it.  Clearly this guy doesn’t know fans.  The closer it is to the source material the happier the fans are, hasn’t he ever read a Resident Evil forum.  Not even the characters names were brought over; basically they just thought that a familiar name would bring in fans.

The premise of the film is that a loner named Jake Lonergan (yeah that’s right LONERgan), who is played by Daniel Craig, wakes up with a mysterious device on his arm and no memory of his life.  He soon learns that he’s a wanted criminal and is locked up by Colonel Dolarhyde (yes the names are terrible), played by Harrison Ford.  When aliens attack, the two must put their differences aside if they want to protect the world from the invaders.

The trailer doesn’t look all that appealing and I’m pretty sure I seen a wire at one point pulling a guy off a horse.  I’m not saying that the movie won’t be good, but even the names don’t sound western to me.  To make the film more western they shot it on film rather than use digital so why couldn’t they spend a little more time thinking of names.  I hope I’m wrong, I really do, but for the time being, I have to say, I don’t see bright things in this films future.  I think it’s going to have to be really really good to avoid being rip apart by fans of the comic.  However, people might go to see it for the cast alone.  Harrison Ford, Daniel Craig and Olivia Wilde all star in the film and all have a pretty good fan base.  Only time will tell whether this film will sink or swim.

What do you think?  Are western films making a comeback?  Will comic fans tear this film to pieces?  Let me know by voting and leaving a comment below.  Also don’t forget to subscribe.


Water for Elephants

Robert Pattinson goes from an animal eating vampire to a circus veterinarian as he attempts to take his career in a more serious direction.  Will his plan work or will he always be haunted by Edward Cullen?

Water for Elephants started out as a book by Sara Gruen.  It was Gruen’s third book and was initially turned down by her publisher.  Since publication, in 2006, it has become a bestseller and can be read in 44 different languages.  The story is narrated by Jacob Jankowski, a 90 something year old man living in a nursing home.  Jacob reminisces about his life as veterinarian in a circus.  While working at the circus, he met, and fell in love with, a married woman named Marlena, as if that wasn’t bad enough, her husband is a paranoid schizophrenic.

The movie follows the same plot and stars Robert Pattinson as Jacob, Reese Witherspoon as Marlena and Christoph Waltz as August, Marlena’s Husband.  Both critics and movie goers have criticised the chemistry, or lack of chemistry, between Pattinson and Witherspoon.  It seems that the 11 year age gap may have taken a toll on their performances, which, to be honest, isn’t surprising.  Besides that there isn’t much criticism to be said, but chemistry between characters can make or break a movie.  It really makes me wonder if, when casting for the movie, they were looking for chemistry or just big names.

Though not my type of movie, I have to say that, from the trailer, the movie looks very well put together.  If you’re an animal lover you should be warned that there are some scenes of animal cruelty.  The cruelty toward animals was also present in the book, because it was very common in circuses back then, but no animals were actually hurt it’s all just Hollywood magic.

What do you think?  Does this movie help Robert Pattinson become a more serious actor?  Is the book better or worse than the movie?  Did you think there was chemistry between Reese Witherspoon and Robert Pattinson?  Let me know by voting and leaving a comment below.  Also don’t forget to subscribe.


Titan Comics to Release New Family Guy Comics

Titan Comics are releasing a comic book series based on the hit US TV show Family Guy.  The comics will feature characters from the show, including the Griffin Family, Quagmire, Joe and even Cleveland.  The return of Cleveland indicates that it will not be canon with the shows, though it will follow a similar structure.

American’s can expect to see the first issue of this comic on the 27th of July, but non-American’s will have to wait a bit longer.  How much longer is, at this moment, unclear, but Titan Comics is a big multinational company that makes tie in movie and TV comics, so it shouldn’t be too long before they have the comic on shelves worldwide.

This is not the first Family Guy comic series, in 2006 a three issue miniseries, 100 Ways to Kill Lois, was released.  The comic matched the style of the show perfectly, which includes the use of cut away sequences.  Family Guy can translate extremely well to comics, as proven by 100 Ways to Kill Lois.  Let’s just hope that this one can also maintain the good aspects of the show, while offering some fresh storylines.

The comic will be drawn by, comic book artists, SL Gallant and Anthony Williams.  No story writers have been announced yet.

What do you think?  Are you excited about the comic?  Did you like the previous Family Guy comics?  Do you like the show?


Superman: Man of Steel 2012

Is it a bird?  Is it a plane?  No, it’s a British guy in a cape.

Next year Superman will be landing in cinemas once again.  The movie is going to be a complete reboot and will be unrelated to previous Superman films.  The plot is somewhat of a mystery, but, as usual, rumours have been circling the web, some ridiculous.  At this stage all we really know is that a portion takes place in Smallville, probably a big portion as they cast Kevin Costner as Jonathan Kent.  A name has not been confirmed, but it is rumoured to be Superman: Man of Steel.

The villain hasn’t even been confirmed yet, though most believe its Zod.  We probably won’t have to wait very long before all the missing pieces are revealed, as the whole film is being rushed to avoid a payout.  The family of the original creator of Superman have won a case to regain some rights to Superman and his origin.  The judge ruled that Warner Bros did not have to pay the family for Superman movies that had already been made, but would have to start production of a new Superman movie by 2011 or the family could sue for loss of earnings.

So far four cast members have been announced.  Henry Cavill will play Superman, making him the first non American to portray the man of steel, Amy Adams was cast as Lois Lane, Diane Lane is Martha Kent and, as mentioned above, Kevin Costner’s Jonathan Kent.  The interesting thing about the casting is that there is almost ten years between each of the actors.  Henry Cavill is 27, Amy Adams is 36, Diane Lane is 46 and Kevin Costner is 56.  Maybe it’s a conspiracy.

Personally, I really like Superman and I’m looking forward to this movie, at least until I have reason not to.  Christopher Nolan is producing the movie and David S. Goyer is writing it.  Nolan became interested when he heard Goyer’s idea, so you know it’s got to be good.  Zack Snyder, director of Watchmen, is directing the film.  It’s beginning to sound like this movies going to be darker than other Superman films.  I just hope they make it serious, because comic book movies usual don’t work well unless they take themselves serious.  The movie will be released some time in December 2012.

What do you think?  What would you like to see happen?  Is the age gap a conspiracy theory?  Let me know by voting and leaving a comment below.


Rise of the Apes

Imagine a world were apes were the dominant species and humans were just pets.  Lucky for you, you don’t have to imagine, because they’ve made a film about it.  Actually they’ve made lots of films about it, but it started as a book call La Planéte des singes.  It was written by Pierre Boulle and tells the tale of a couple that find a message in a bottle floating in space.  The message explains that two men travelled from Earth to a planet that was ruled by apes.  On this planet humans were primitive servants, but when the apes find out these new arrivals intelligent they decide all humans must be killed.  One of the men escapes with a primitive woman, that he fell in love with, and the child they had together.  When he returns to Earth he finds that apes have taken over the world.

The first film came out in 1968.  In this version the apes planet is revealed to be Earth, which was not the case in the original novel.  The film was a success and has had four sequels, two TV adaptations and a re-imagining, plus the upcoming film, Rise of the Apes.

The re-imagining of the film came out in 2001 and was also a success.  It was all set to have a sequel, but Tim Burton, who directed the film, said he’d rather ‘jump out a window’ than do another one.  The end of this film was closer to the novels ending.  Leo returns to Earth and finds it is ruled by apes.  This ending confused audiences; it was not really done very well.  It kind of mixed the books ending with the ending of the original movie, he made it back to his time but it has to be the same planet because the Lincoln Memorial changed into a memorial for General Thade, the bad guy.

The plot of the upcoming film, Rise of the Apes, has not been completely revealed, but we do know that it’s a prequel (to what I don’t know).  I assume it must be a prequel to the 2001 movie, as it differs from the canon of the older films.  In the film, James Franco will play a scientist who is experimenting on apes.  One of the apes, Caesar, begins to mutate and become intelligent.  The film is said to be a warning about genetic engineering.  This will be the first Planet of the Apes film to us CGI to create the apes.  The movie is expected to hit cinemas on the 5th of August, so be on the lookout for mutated apes.

What do you think?  Do you want the Planet of the Apes franchise to continue or would you prefer if it died out?  Which is your favourite Planet of the Apes film?  Let me know by voting and leaving a comment below.


Limitless

If perfection was one pill away, would you take it?  Who wouldn’t?  What if I told you it comes with side effects and murderous hit men?  Still want it?  It may sound strange, but this is the plot of Alan Glynn’s book The Dark Fields, which has now been turned into a film called Limitless.  The book itself is being re-released under the new title Limitless.

The film stars Bradley Cooper, as Eddie Morra (Spinola in the book) an out of work writer whose girlfriend leaves him.  He is then offered an experimental drug, NZT (MDT-48 in the book), that increases his focus and confidence.  He is able to remember everything he’s ever read, heard or seen.  Eddie becomes successful and this success attracts unwanted attention, that’s where the hit men come into it.

For the trailer I can already tell I’m going to like this film.  The concept is interesting and it was executed well, I can already tell they’ve made numerous changes from the book, some that seem pointless, but I’m not going to hold it against them.  The really feels like something you won’t mind sitting down and watching for an hour and forty five minutes, which is the running time by the way.

The movie comes out, in Ireland and England, on the 23rd of March.  Be sure to see it if you’re a fan of action and/or Robert De Niro.

What do you think of the movie?  Given the chance would you take the pill?  Let me know by voting and leaving a comment below.


100th Post

While doing research on 100th posts I uncovered something that I wasn’t expecting.  Apparently for your 100th post you are supposed to write 100 things about yourself.  Since I write a post every day, I had to think of these all in one sitting and it took a while, but here it goes.

  1. I like to wear t-shirts that say things that are the opposite of me e.g. football on the brain.
  2. I take hours to eat, because I’m big into really tasting things.
  3. I mix a lot of foods together, for the same reason as above I like tastes, this means I’ll put chips on pizza, dip mars bars in tea, and millions of other things that could take up a whole post.
  4. I hate ads on TV I’ll do anything to avoid them.  I’ll change the channel or even leave the room, not just randomly I’d have something planned to do on the ad break; like next ad I’ll go put my phone on charge or let the dogs out.
  5. I have two dogs.
  6. I have a brother.
  7. I have a nephew, who is also my godson.
  8. I’m really bad with kids and babies, but my nephew likes me for some reason.
  9. I’ve never changed a nappy and hope to go a lot longer before I ever have to.

10.  I play the piano.  I thought myself when I was a kid.

11.  I love horror movies.  I used to be so afraid of them, but now I can’t get enough.

12.  I love foreign films, mainly, but not exclusively, Japanese.

13.  I don’t think that the number 13 is unlucky.

14.  I would love to write a book.

15.  I’ve been writing since I was a kid.

16.  I’m really bad at lying.

17.  I’ve had the same e-mail address since I was 17.

18.  I read really slowly, but I don’t always see that as a bad thing, because I get to live with the story longer.

19.  I’m not good at social networks sites.

20.  I’m a hoarder.  I’m not really bad, but I don’t like getting rid of things.

21.  I’m a really bad dancer.

22.  I’m not very emotional.

23.  I go on strange thought patterns, which lead to conversation skips that people can’t follow.

24.  I don’t eat fish.  I don’t even know what most fish taste like, I just don’t eat them because there fish.

25.  I’m put myself out for people, probably too much.

26.  When a family member asks for a favour I say no, then I do it.  It’s like an ongoing joke that has gone so far past funny that it’s just become a normal part of conversation, it was funny the first time I said it.

27.  I love learning about all the behind the scenes stuff, so I love watching deleted scenes and special features.

28.  I’m a fountain of useless information.

29.  I’m easily excited and when that happens my voice goes weird, it’s like I lose the ability to say some letters.

30.  I’m not afraid to talk to people.

31.  Sugar free jellies make me hyper.

32.  Breakfast is my favourite meal of the day, but only on days that I don’t have to rush it.

33.  I can’t eat breakfast first thing in the morning, if I don’t have to be in college I’ll wait until around 12 to eat it, by then I’d already have walked my dogs.

34.  I have the biggest bedroom, because my mam can’t sleep at the front of the house due to the noise of cars and my brother, who I used to share a room with, was told that if he wanted his own room he’d have to move into the spare room he couldn’t kick me out of the room.

35.  I can solve a Rubik’s cube in less than 3 minutes.

36.  I have a whiteboard in my bedroom.

37.  I have two guitars that I can’t play.

38.  As a child I had white hair, then it went blond and now it’s a weird dark blond colour.

39.  I have a PS3.

40.  I recently got a HD cable for my TV.

41.  I have a wolf mask on my wall that is lucky, but only when worn as a hat.

42.  I strongly believe that you can only open one packet of biscuits at a time, even if you want a different type.

43.  I don’t care about the inner details of celebrities lives.

44.  I’m a huge lost fan.

45.  I still haven’t stuck my communion photo into my primary school graduation book.  I promised that I’d stick it in when I got home from school, because I’d forgot to bring the picture in, then we didn’t have clue so I just put the picture in the book, not glued, and I haven’t gotten around to gluing it yet and that was in 2004.

46.  I’m dyslexic.

47.  In primary school I wrote a book, with some other dyslexic friends, about my dog and it got put in the school library, we even had a book launch.

48.  I have Ulysses, but not think I’ll be trying to read it anytime soon.

49.  I have a book that I’ve been planning on finishing reading since 2004, I think I’ll have to start from the start if I want it to make sense.

50.  I don’t like drinks with bits in them.

51.  I like Sims games (console versions mostly), but mainly for the multiplayer mode so I’m a bit iffy with Sims 3.

52.  I’ve known my best friend for about 14 years and the longest real fight we’ve ever had was about two days.

53.  I love family guy and American dad, but not the Cleveland show; I’d still watch it if nothing else was on though.

54.  I send a lot of text messages.

55.  Every year I seem to get a stalker, it’s not real psycho stalking or anything, but it’s strange.  Also every year I lose a stalker, because another one talks their place and they seem to fade into the background.

56.  I don’t like being wrong.

57.  I don’t curse a lot.

58.  My relatives used to be afraid to curse around me because I’d give out to them.

59.  I’m a bit of a control freak.

60.  My room is wired weird.  If I want better TV reception I have to put a pillow behind the headboard, if I move from one seat to the other the radio station sometimes changes, if I stand in certain places the radio gets fuzzy and one of my sockets only works in you leave the plug hanging out a bit and push up the bottom.

61.  I have a table that I made out of a drawing board and a keyboard stand.

62.  My brother and I rarely get along.

63.  I don’t drink.

64.  I love drawing and just art in general.

65.  I don’t have any tattoos.

66.  I love cold weather, rain and snow.

67.  I tan really easy and have only really gotten sun burn once, in Florida.

68.  When I was a kid I won an art contest, which I entered through my school, and forgot to tell my family.  A few weeks later my mam found the gold medal in my bag.

69.  My team came second in a school football tournament, that everyone had to take part in, and I turned down the medal out of protest because my team complained that they would have won if they had a better player instead of me.  I was made take the medal though.

70.  I have a house in France.

71.  I don’t really watch TV till midnight.

72.  I don’t sleep a lot, never have.  I stay up until about 3 and wake up at around half 7 on a day I have college at 9, or at 9 on a weekend.  There weren’t enough hours in the day so I took some from the night.

73.  I hate reality TV, with some exceptions.

74.  I’m bad at maths.

75.  I’m a learner driver.

76.  I own a Toyota Yaris, which I love.

77.  I went to New York the year before last and loved it.  Can’t wait to go again.

78.  I’ve never had a good time playing Quasar.

79.  I’m very competitive.

80.  I don’t drink fizzy drinks, I have water instead.

81.  I love milk.

82.  I hate getting my photo taken.

83.  I still have a VCR.

84.  I love languages and accents.

85.  I put a lot of thought into giving presents that people will actually want, for example; I once gave a friend a Canadian accent for Christmas and another time I made someone a giant card with a picture of them drawn on the front (I had to walk a fair distance and wait around holding this card in a really big envelope).

86.  My secondary school gave me a piano.

87.  I’m studying journalism.

88.  I’m editor of my college’s online magazine.

89.  I hate getting my hair cut.

90.  Sometimes I like movies just because they’re bad.

91.  I want to travel around the world.

92.  I love playing with Photoshop.

93.  I’m a big fan of Devil May Cry, even number two.

94.  I like to rearrange the letter of names to make new ones.

95.  I once wore odd shoes around to my friend’s house without realising it.

96.  I’m supposed to wear glasses, but rarely actually do.

97.  I have random nosebleeds.

98.  I’m not a morning person.

99.  I bake.

100. My favourite flavour ice-cream is Phish food (Ben and Jerry’s).

Thanks to everyone for reading, hope you like the list and I hope that you enjoy the blog.  Check back tomorrow for post 101.


Read it or Leave it

It happens to everyone, don’t worry about it, it has nothing to do with size or how hard it is, sometimes you just can’t finish that book.  I’ve been reading the Lord of the Flies for… a while now and the end is nowhere in sight.  Yet I can’t stop.  I’ve never been able to stop reading a book, even Portrait of the artist as a young man, before I make it to the end.

I’ve been reading books ever since I was a kid and it’s only ever happened twice.  One was the first Lord of the rings book, but I decided that since I stopped reading so early into the book, and had no idea what half of the words meant, it was okay to skip it.  The other time was Reaching the Heights.  I read most of it in school when I was twelve, loved it, but when the school year ended we hadn’t finished it and I just sort of never got around to it again.  However I still have the book and have decided to do with Desmond, from Lost did, and make the book the last one I read before I die.  It does kind of put a damper on the excitement of reading it to be honest.

I’m not a fast reader, by any stretch of the imagination, but I don’t usually take months to read a book.  I have set myself the target of finishing it before Christmas, which is pathetic because Lord of the Flies isn’t very long, but I just don’t have the drive to finish it.  There have been occasions where I thought a book was really bad until a point, then it picked up and I sped though the rest.  I hope that happens, but either way I’m in it ‘til the bitter end.

Comment and vote below to let me know what you think, but spoiler comments about any of the books mentioned will not be approved.


Books vs Movies/TV shows

Harry Potter, Twilight, True Blood, Percy Jackson and many others, all started as books.  A long before the cinema goer cared what happened to Bella Swan she was ink on a page, ink that captivated readers, and Harry Potter originally fought the Dark Lord in the imaginations of readers.

As a fan of books, movies and TV shows, it’s hard for me to say which is better.  When it comes to judging between movies and shows that started as books it’s sometimes better just to take them as entirely different entity’s that just share some names and maybe a title, because a lot of the time so much of the story has changed that there is hardly a resemblance.

By listening to people talk about this, I’ve learned that a fool will always say the book is better (even if they haven’t seen it).  No offence intended, sometimes the book is better but it’s not always.  I like the True Blood TV series better than the books.  I may change my mind but at the moment that’s how I feel, Harry Potter books will always be better than the movies, Twilight movies aren’t good but the books are, and I’ve never read Percy Jackson but I love the movie.

One downside to books is that they take so long to read (for me at least).  A movie goes on for a set amount of time and if you sit there facing the screen for that long then you’re done.  On the other hand, movies are limited in a way the books are not, special effects can only do so much.  Another thing I like about books is the thought that a character has a million faces; everyone pictures them just a little bit differently.

I’m not trying to make an overall judgement, but I want to know which you prefer.  Everyone has a preference.  Do you curl up with a book, or relax with a movie/TV show.


Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows part 1

On the 19th of November the end begins.  No it’s not another conspiracy theory, it’s the date part one of the final Harry Potter film comes out.  Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows was one of the best books in the series and it looks like it’s going to be one of the best movies too.

The trailer looks amazing.  The franchise has gotten darker and darker as the movies went on.  Now in its darkest days the wizard world has to fight against the Dark Lord Voldemort and by the looks of it they don’t stand a chance. 

If you’ve read the books then you already know who makes it to the end and who doesn’t, but for those that haven’t read the books be warned J.K. Rowling isn’t shy about brutally killing her characters.

The special effects in the film look great.  Unfortunately while filming, stunt man David Holmes injured his spine.  Initially Holmes hoped to return to work but it was later reported that he is paralyzed and is now confined to a wheelchair.

The first part will be released in 2D and IMAX, the second part is coming out in 2D, 3D and IMAX.  The films will end the series with a bang, but don’t forget you may need tissues as not all your favourite characters will make it to the end, which is why I was disappointed to see the return of a certain character, that I thought had been long forgotten by the makers of the films, in the trailer.


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