Tag archives for Sci-fi
There’s a substantial amount of TV news to cover this week lead by the new trailer for the series Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. FOX also has a new scifi show from JJ Abrams and there’s a Sleepy Hollow thing happening and a Dracula series too. We check out the shows and trailers and break them down for you. We hit on the new issue of Ultimate Comics Spider-man, talk about Gatsby and we have an early review of Fast and Furious 6!!
Directed by Carl Upsdell
Starring Eli Gabay, Brian Drummond, Alex Zahara, Trevor Devall
Created by Paul Jenkins and Jae Lee
The Inhumans, a lesser-known yet intriguing aspect of Marvel Comics, breaks out into the video market with the motion comic of Paul Jenkins and Jae Lee’s award-winning miniseries. Does award-winning comic writing still translate into motion?
The Inhumans are a secretive culture of ancient genetically-modified people who have avoided contact with the rest of mankind for their entire existence. That avoidance is tested as their home city of Attilan, located on the recently-resurfaced island of Atlantis, has become a target for greedy politicians and warmongers wanting access to the Inhumans’ advanced technology. The Inhumans, lead by their King Black Bolt whose voice destroys mountains, must defend against an invading force and an unknown threat from within.
This motion comic collects the 1998-1999 12-issue miniseries by Paul Jenkins and Jae Lee, winning the pair an Eisner Award for best new series. (Eisners are basically the Academy Awards for comics) It splits focus between Black Bolt and his royal family, a young generation of Inhumans just getting their powers, the submissive Neanderthal-like Alpha Primitive race, and the humans outside.
The Inhumans are a lesser-known franchise in the Marvel universe, probably better known for their occasional run ins with the Fantastic Four. While there are small cameos by a couple of more notable Marvel characters, this is entirely their show. It does a good job catching the viewer up with the characters and the society, even the disturbing prejudice that runs through the Inhumans.
The Inhumans in the spotlight are well developed as characters, seeing their pros and cons and a wide range of emotions from frustration to elation and more. The human antagonists don’t fare as well, with shallow personalities and generic motivations.
As with every Marvel motion comic DVD/Blu-Ray release I’ve watched, this one also divides each part – all 12 of them – into its own short episodes, annoyingly playing credits between each one. With these interruptions every 10 minutes, it’s hard to stay engaged. Worse yet, the theme music used each time – an overly serious and somber tune that takes you out of the mood to watch the story.
Making the engagement matter worse is the heavy-handed third-person narration following the entire story. The dull, existentialist-wannabe narrator continually pulls you away from the actions on screen, making this work feel less like an event unfolding onscreen and more like the boring dribble you find yourself drifting off to in English class.
Perhaps because the narration and constant interruptions seem to draw this out, but the overall film feels far too long than it needs to be. Several parts in the middle could have been further compressed. What takes moments to read on a page takes considerably longer to watch play out, particularly with the aforementioned bloated narration.
With all of these hurdles, if you manage to stick with it, you do find yourself invested in the climatic payoff, only to be hampered by a weak resolution that leaves the audience unfulfilled.
I enjoy the Inhuman characters, their culture, and their culture clash with humanity. This conflict does a good job exploring all of that. The execution though, particularly in this motion comic form, is lacking.
The Video and Audio
The art drops quality from paper to motion video, not nearly as clean as Jae Lee’s original work. This is painfully obvious when you look at the cover adorned in art from the books. The animation itself is often jerky, laughably so at times.
The audio is workable. Some of the voices start sounding alike, and you start to not notice who is talking. (Also a fault of the poor animation) It doesn’t help that several of the voice cast perform multiple characters.
The Packaging and Bonus Features
This one disc set in a flimsy cardboard case comes with a half-hour documentary on the making of the Inhumans comic mini-series that became this motion comic. The documentary features heavily on writer Paul Jenkins coming into the Inhumans franchise he wasn’t familiar with and working with artist Jae Lee. Also interviewed is Marvel’s Chief Creative Officer Joe Quesada – who helped create the “Marvel Knights” label of outside creatives breathing new life into characters falling to the wayside, which included the Inhumans.
It’s usually enlightening to hear about the creative process of renowned comics, and this doc measures up. It’s honestly a more entertaining and easier watch than the motion comic itself.
With that said, the bonuses are otherwise slim pickings. Given the relative obscurity of the Inhumans over some of Marvel’s other properties, this really could have benefitted from character bios or a history recap.
Overall (Not an Average)
I read this story some number of years ago in the trade book. While I don’t remember too much from then, I know I didn’t feel like this work was as long and dull as this viewing. It’s the weakness of motion comics. Instead of properly adapting a story into a new medium in a way that better fits it, motion comics often just scan the comic and animate a character here and there. Things that work fine in print, like the narration, don’t play as well in video and audio.
I also understand that these parts, episodes, issues, or whatever were originally made to be released one at a time online, but on home video, they should be compiled for a single viewing experience without interruptions by the credits every 10 minutes. Think of trade collections versus single issues.
Until Marvel learns to adapt these comics for a video medium properly and change the storytelling aspects that don’t translate well from print to video, these home releases of Marvel’s motion comics suffer a steep handicap.
The Film 5/10
The Video and Audio 4/10
The Packaging and Bonus Features 6/10
Overall (Not an Average) 4/10
Directed by: James Tucker
Starring: Matt Bomer, Stana Katic, John Noble, Molly C. Quinn
DC/Warner Brothers has a group of collaborators to craft these direct to DVD/blu-ray/VOD films that previously crafted some of the best animated super hero television shows of all time. As great as Marvel’s films are their animated movies have been failures. DC on the other hand has released a string of great animated feature films based on their classic super hero characters. Superman Unbound is the latest release featuring this familiar craftsman.
Superman has a shortlist of classic villains including Doomsday, Lex Luthor, and Brainiac. These three baddies in particular are the only ones that have found ways to take out the Man of Steel in spite of him being nearly unbeatable. So, it’s inevitable that DC would eventually bring us a Brainiac film considering there has already been a Doomsday film and Luthor has permeated Superman’s animated life from the beginning. Brainiac is similar to a Borg from Star Trek; he’s mostly made of machine but there’s just enough bio matter to piece him together. He travels the universe taking the knowledge bio life forms and then destroying them in an attempt to better the universe. Along the way he takes samples of the most interesting life forms and stores them in bottles. Most notably, and a classic story in the DC comics, he took a single city from Superman’s home world of Krypton Via a probe Brainiac discovers the existence of Earth and of course the existence of Superman, so the battle begins.
On top of Superman vs. Brainiac there are a few subplots happening; Supergirl’s struggle to find her place on a world where she only has one other of her species and Lois and Clark finding their way in their relationship. Brainiac should be a truly scary character and for the first time in a Superman animated film the villain is horrifying. He’s cold, uncaring, and unstoppable. As powerful as Supergirl is she is frozen in fear at just the thought of Brainiac because she was on Krypton when he came, when she and no one else on her planet had any power to stop him. The film is edgy featuring a good bit of murder and bloodletting and that sense of fear is buffered by a much more adult atmosphere featuring strong language and even some hand gestures not common in animated films.
Superman faces off against Brainiac with no previous knowledge of the villain and of course he underestimates Brainiac leading to even bigger and more dangerous battles. The sad thing about the film is the story does such a good job of building the atmosphere of feat that the failings of the artwork are painfully apparent. It’s not that the art is completely horrible but it just doesn’t always match the adult vibe of the story. Brainiac definitely has a much better design in this film than the character originally had in comics when he was first introduced but in later years he actually comes off scarier than he does in this film. Overall though this film is a solid success, the directing, acting, and story execution is outstanding. This is an adult story and the characters are complex and multilayered, Supergirl in particular. The action does devolve at a few points to Superman’s basic punch punch heat vision and punch again but the final act action works well. DC comics are much more sci-fi than Marvel’s more grounded stories and that trend continues here with some on the nose science fiction themes wrapping up the story. While this thematic choice does soften the horror elements of the film it does fit with the overall DC universe. The biggest failing of this film is the name. Superman Unbound is just a dumb name and it doesn’t really have any impact on the story.
The film is presented in widescreen in 1080p HD and colors and lines look great with no major aliasing issues, something that often plagues animated films. The artwork is just bizarre though. DC’s animated films have always gone for a retro sort of 50’s art deco approach and while that does continue here it’s augmented with some bad choices. Some scenes with Clark Kent in particular feature him having and enormous body and a tiny little pin head, it just looks dumb. There are also a couple of human characters that are just Daily Planet employees that are built identical to Superman. That just doesn’t make any sense. When in full on Superman mode the character looks a little like an old character from videogames called Vector Man. The important thing to know about the character is that he’s just sort of a stack of balls that make up his shape, Superman is the same.
The Surround sound audio is fairly basic in design. The overall dynamics of the audio are almost flat lined, no explosive bass or ringing score here. On the upside dialogue is crisp and clean and special FX are distortion free and they sound exactly as they are meant to sound, not a spectacular presentation but it gets the job done.
The Packaging and Bonus Features
The Blu-ray is presented in a standard amaray case along with a digital copy and DVD of the film. The holographic slipcover featuring some action from the movie is quite eye catching and it feels much more special than the case itself actually is. There are a few good supplements on the blu-ray that actually enhance the movie watching experience. The best featurette is one that covers who Brainiac is and what impact he has had on the DC universe. The featurette has interviews with some of DC’s pros as well as those involved in the film. It’s a simple talking head affair but it features some great archival images from the comics. Speaking of archive there’s another featurette called “From the DC Archives” which sort of follows Brainiac’s timeline. On top of all that there’s actually an audio commentary that also features some great behind the scenes information. What we have here isn’t very deep but it’s so much better than we’d expect from a direct to home video animated film.
Superman Unbound is another solid entry in DC Entertainment’s stable of well executed super hero animated films. If you’re a fan then this one is a must see. It’s not as good as Superman/Batman Public Enemies but it’s better than Superman/Doomsday. Also thank you DC for avoiding the celebrity name dropping and just bringing back the voice actors that originally made these characters great.
Overall (Not an Average) 8/10
The Movie 8/10
The Video 7/10
The Audio 7/10
The Packaging and Bonus Features 8/10
Overall (Not an Average) 8/10
This week we talk videogame announcements, fantasy film ball, and dildos but that’s all a distant second to the in depth Iron Man 3 analysis!
Written by Corey Taylor
Art by Richard Clark
A man wakes up in a strange land with no idea who or where he is, suddenly chased by ghostly mobs and a doppelganger. Sounds intriguing enough, but does the book go anywhere with it?
This first issue follows an unnamed human male around a dreamlike field. The character is unnamed except for the label “Zero” on his jumpsuit, almost like a prison suit. He also doesn’t know who he is, so don’t expect any answers from him anytime soon.
During his escapade, he meets a ghost-like creature who takes his likeness and calls himself Allen. He warns the human of an unknown event called “The Conflagration.” Allen tells the human and us that the key to leaving this crazy world is at the House of Gold and Bones, but can the human get there before Black Jack’s ghastly gang catches up to him?
If this sounds particularly surreal, it is. We readers are as unaware of what’s going on as the human, so we become just as frustrated as he is at this confusing predicament. Why is he being chased? Where is he and where is he going? What is going on? Who is this guy? No idea to any of these.
Yes, it’s the first issue, so it’s supposed to set up the general mystery of the story. It’s also supposed to introduce us to the characters and the world so that we have a starting point we can grasp. I’m not the biggest fan of overdone exposition, but it’s better than none.
The human himself is a bland character. He’s confused and angry about this strange situation he’s in, as anyone would, but he doesn’t do anything to gain our favor as an interesting protagonist. I don’t care what happens to him and would much rather explore the world, which doesn’t get done much in this first issue. It reminds me of the 2009 The Prisoner remake with Jim Caviezel and Ian McKellen, except without anyone as charismatic as Jim Caviezel or Ian McKellen.
There’s no foundation set to hook us into this world, and there’s no character we feel drawn to, so there’s no real investment to keep us readers wanting to know the mystery of this world and this book.
The artwork is serviceable for the story. Unfortunately, as the story isn’t really exciting as you can tell from the above, the art follows suit and feels bland. Several of the panels and the character blocking are bland. Some of the facial expressions are off-putting and unnatural.
The key scene for the art to make its mark – the scene where the human and we readers get a look at this strange new world – is a letdown by how unremarkable it is. This is supposed to be a strange, disorienting world, and we just see a plain valley and some mountains with a sunset.
One of the variant covers, a red and black portrait of the man screaming, is a neat artistic take with the title in white with some splattering effects and a definition of “overture” (the title of the issue). It’s a good cover, but the inside just doesn’t measure up.
Overall (Not an Average)
First issues are hard, especially for brand new series without any established characters or tie-ins. You have to hook readers right away, or else they won’t stick around for issue two. I won’t be sticking around for issue two of this one. I hope the story develops more quickly for those who do.
Overall (Not an Average) 4/10
The world premiere of the first teaser trailer for ENDER’S GAME will debut during a Google+ Hangout on Tuesday, May 7 @ 1:00 PM PT / 4:00 PM ET. The event will also feature a live conversation with director Gavin Hood (X-MEN ORIGINS: WOLVERINE), producer Bob Orci (STAR TREK INTO DARKNESS) and star Asa Butterfield (HUGO).
Stars Harrison Ford and Asa Butterfield want to say hello and show you a sneak peek of the first footage ever released of the highly anticipated epic adventure:
You can tune in to the live Google+ Hangout at YouTube.com/EndersGameMovie and Google.com/+EndersGame. Fans are invited to submit their questions for a chance to have them answered in the Hangout. Join in the conversation online using #EndersGame.
Join the event here: https://plus.google.com/events/cuito512urg0a64r6bc2ocuakuc
It’s time for the summer block of film ball bidding! With 40 films this promises to be an “epic” fight to get to the good stuff! We have two games going, a listener bracket (listeners/viewers of the weekly podcast) and of course the site’s contributors. Bill won the last listener game so he will be joining the contributors game this block with Jonathan returning to try and dominate the listeners once again. This season we will be posting everyone’s movie lists after the bidding is complete so that you can pick a player to follow and join their team! Which list will have that winning mix of movies to take the game? It all starts Wednesday night when the bidding begins live on the webcast on Ustream at 6:30 central time. To view the show live just go here (6pm central Wednesday preshow, 6:30 main show begins and bidding!)
The movie list!
- The Heat
This week we got it all, new Man of Steel trailer, new Star Trek trailer, Star Wars news and more! We also have an extensive list of the most important television shows of all time and Doctor Who, Lost, and 24 are nowhere to be found on it! Scroll on down to download or stream the episode or better yet stream it from the Stitcher Radio app on your mobile device or from the widget on the left of this page. To see the trailers that we are talking about then just look down!
Written by Tim Siedell
Art by Stephen Thompson
Darth Vader is not a particularly nice dude. He’s racked up his share of enemies throughout the galaxy, even when you don’t count the Hayden Christensen haters. Now, will one man’s vengeance finally catch up to the Sith lord?
Darth Vader is one difficult S.O.B. to kill. A grieving father has hired eight assassins to take out the Sith lord who killed his child, and all have failed. Desperate, a ninth assassin with a “bloody” high cost and a high opinion of his chances is hired to face Vader for maybe the last time.
This first issue features very little of Vader and of this as-of-yet unnamed assassin character. It instead follows this grieving father – whose son seems to be a foolhardy and dimwitted prick not entirely undeserving of his fate – searching out the assassin to exact his revenge. It’s all set up, showing the world(s) the story takes place in, rife with corporate corruption conflicting with political corruption. Also a lot of wading through a steamy swamp planet. I wouldn’t be surprised if it were Dagobah, but sadly there are no Yoda cameos.
The substance of this issue is lacking. Most of the characters who get lengthy story time are either cannon fodder or don’t matter to the upcoming drama. With so little of Vader himself or of the assassin, who seems pretty formidable in his own right, it’s hard to get hooked on the title by this issue alone. The only thing it has going for it is the hope for a Vader throw down in the future, which is whittled away with each issue that doesn’t feature that.
I want to see Vader being badass and fighting a sword-wielding, shadowy killer, and that’s what this book should be. Any actual suspense will be cut down, as we all know Vader survives this to die another day. Yet surprisingly, this issue is number one of an ongoing title instead of a mini-series. I don’t know how much even great fights can sustain an ongoing title with a forgone conclusion of failure and imperial continuance. If it continues to show little of the actual action the premise hopes for, it has an even less certain future.
To its benefit, the book has a good twist at the end to show how sadistic the assassin is when exacting his price for slaying Vader. Perhaps this is a good sign of how drastic the coming battles will be.
Before getting to the quality of the art, I want to point out that the cover of this first issue features neither Vader nor the assassin. It’s really just the grieving father meeting the assassin’s booking agent, who is simply sitting – albeit menacingly enough – on a throne. No combat. No lightsaber duals. No Vader, who by all rights is the selling point of this book. I guess Dark Horse is hoping the “Darth Vader” name will be enough to sell issues, but I’d wager the Darth Vader image would help even more.
The art is serviceable. The penciler/inker/colorer team went through a lot of work detailing the characters, their costuming, and the backgrounds. Everything looks fine. The lack of compelling story or action though makes everything feel bland though, despite the effort of the artists.
What little bit of Vader there is in this book, he looks impressive and menacing. His suit is well detailed, and with his lightsaber held up high, he looks like a silent force of death. As he should.
At first glance, I thought the title said “Darth Vader and the NINJA Assassin.” With what little moments we see of the assassin itself, that may not be too far off. That’s a missed opportunity on Dark Horse’s part. Darth Vader versus ninjas? That’s a license to print money. This book as is? It needs to work a lot harder to bring in any audience or cash.
Overall (Not an Average) 6/10
OK it’s not much and yeah it’s mostly a marketing trick but hey any look at what’s coming from Marvel is something hat we have to latch onto right? Right? Have a look:
Ok so here’s something cool, an announcement for a new series of Mimobots! If you are uninformed Mimobots are super cool usb flash drives. These sorts of drives are a near necessity these days with CD/DVD drives in computers quickly going the way of the dodo bird. This time Mimoco brings us one of the most hated characters in science fiction history: Jar Jar Binx! Yeah he’s hated but come on these little drives are just too funny not to appreciate. Maybe it’s becoming ironic to actually like Jar Jar? From the company:
Jar Jar Binks MIMOBOT – Yes, Mimoco turned the character with the worst memory in the Star Wars universe into a memory storage device! It’s in Jar Jar’s nature to blaze trails, just as he was the first of his kind to sit and serve on the Galactic senate, Binks, a member of the Gungan race – those amphibious humanoid-frog creatures, now joins esteemed Star WarsTM characters like Darth Vader, R2-D2, C-3PO, and a Stormtrooper in MIMOBOT form and function. Jar Jar finally takes his place in the MIMOBOT collection as an ultra limited edition one year after Mimoco announced him as an April Fool’s joke in a run of just 500 hand-numbered units.
That’s right we did one too. Editor Stephen Lackey and contributing writer Nicholas Qualls unbox Marvel’s epic Marvel Cinematic Universe Phase 1 briefcase. The box set was delayed for 5 months due to a lawsuit involving the original design of the case. Well now it’s redesigned and finally here! Check out our first look at all the goodies inside!
This week we have a film ball showdown, Niko says cock, JJ Abrams talks trash about Trek, HBO Goes, and much more!
Want the video? Here ya go! We stream on Stitcher Radio also if that’s your thing. Get it in the app or check the sidebar of this very website!
Video streaming by Ustream
This week we hit on the big news of how Veronica Mars is being revived from cancellation Hell by Kickstarter and how other cancelled cult classics might not be far behind! We also cover Harrison Ford’s Star Wars comments, Red Box streaming live, new blu-rays, Spider-man, The Avengers, Firefly and more!
Directed by: Rich Moore
Starring: John C. Reilly, Sarah Silverman, Jack McBrayer, Jane Lynch, Adam Carolla
Pixar has proven that if you can craft an animated film built on nostalgia that can bring the adult audience in right alongside the kiddos. The Toy Story franchise is all about growing up and letting loose of those childish things, but still remembering how wonderful those things truly were. The sense of magic and wonder is something that we often lose as adults and those movies brought it all back.
Wreck-It-Ralph in many ways hopes to do something similar with videogames. When the movie was first announced and teased on the web it gained a lot of buzz in the geek community but unfortunately that was the only community that truly locked onto the film. Ralph’s production budget was north of $165 million and by the end of its domestic run the film had only made $187 million. While this is profit you can hardly call it a hit. With that said the film did make a nice sum when you include the global take which totals the movie at just over $435 million. It’s unknown how much more money was put into the film for that foreign distribution and marketing though. We’ve said it before and we’ll say it over and over; a box office success or failure doesn’t always define the quality of the film. Some great fikms just don’t get the attention they deserve.
Wreck-It-Ralph is an 8 bit style arcade cabinet game where Ralph gets his home replaced by a new apartment building. He obviously gets mad and starts wrecking the building. The player plays Fix it Felix, the superintendent of the building, and he uses a magic hammer given to him by his father to fix what Ralph wrecks. After the arcade closes all of the game characters live in their own world via the power cables to the games. Everything changes when Ralph decides he’s tired of always being a bad guy and living alone. He decides the only way he can get in with the good guys is to win a medal. The only way he can accomplish this is by entering another game. And so from here, the story begins.
The first act of the movie worried me a bit because there are some really funny riffs on videogames with lots of cameo’s by popular game characters but the story meandered a bit. All of my worries were assuaged once Ralph made it into a game that is a cross between Mario Kart and a really hardcore anime style videogame. The real story starts here and from this point on the movie is just incredibly endearing. This is an all age’s film so there is a message, and a good one for youngsters. The message deals with people trying to figure out who they really are and how they fit in the world and moreover not letting others tell you what you are. This is an evergreen sort of message that fits every generation of youth. It’s not heavy handed at all though. The story is delivered with plenty of winks at videogame fans new and old and the characters are fairly well drawn and well-acted.
There are tons to laughs and the 3-D is also so well executed you might even forget that the movie is 3-D. You just literally become a part of this world. Oh, along with the videogame jokes there is a myriad of riffs on snack foods that all of us, regardless of age are quite familiar with. Wreck-It-Ralph is the closest any animated film has come to that magical formula so perfectly crafted by Pixar. Those not in the know may even think this is a Pixar film. It’s heartwarming, really funny, action packed, and a joy to look at. Had the first 15 minutes had a little more focus on story and a little less on videogame winks Wreck-It-Ralph would have scored right up there with a film like Toy Story.
The human side of the film is focused on a videogame arcade. Now, it appears to be modern times because some of the games riffed are similar to Gears of War or Halo so we all know that there really aren’t any “arcades” left in most towns. Sure if you look around you might find one but they just aren’t prevalent in the modern pop culture zeitgeist anymore. The director misses an opportunity here to tell a secondary story about the sad loss of these truly special social gathering places that were popular in the 80’s for the youth, and they were the place to find the hot games. Without the arcade though a core arc in the story doesn’t work so this story is sort of in an alternative universe. It’s not a huge complaint but it is a little wonky. The film is pointed at kids as much as or more so than adults and how many kids have actually seen the inside of an arcade like the one portrayed in this film?
Don’t be led to believe that you won’t enjoy the Wreck-It-Ralph film if you aren’t a videogame fan because that’s absolutely not the case. The core story is a classic and very well executed. John C. Reilly brings so much character to Ralph that you can nearly feel him in Ralph’s body language. Sarah Silverman is more perfectly cast in this film than in any film she’s done to date and Jack McBrayer (30 Rock) absolutely is Fix it Felix. Jane Lynch is someone I usually don’t like but nearly every line she delivers cracked me up.Also, stay through the credits because the videogame songs are absolutely a riot and the closing seconds are a true nod to fans of 80’s 8 bit videogames. That joke actually may be lost on youngsters but they’ll still think its cool looking. Even with its flaws Wreck-It-Ralph is still the best animated film of the year (at least so far).
Wreck-it-Ralph is wholly a digital production so handled carefully a film like this one should look flawless on blu-ray, and this film was handled with care. To get technical the theatrical release of Ralph was a standard 2.35;1 and the home release has been expanded to 2.39;1.Why? Well it goes a little beyond me to answer that question. What I can tell you is all of the lines are hard with no aliasing or “jaggies”, colors are vibrant when they’re supposed to be and blacks are inky and still detailed. This is as flawless a CGI film presentation as I’ve seen, well since a Pixar film. The 3-D here is also magnificent featuring a mix of some waggle vision and tons of fine details and subtle uses too. The video in the 3-D version of the film is brightened enough that when you put on the glasses the colors are still vibrant and the diversity of color palette is still well represented even though those glasses can often wash out colors. You might even find with a home viewing of the film in 3-D that you’ll notice things you missed in the theater. I did. For instance the exhaust of the vehicles isn’t just generic dust, take a close look. There are some instances where the film is purposefully in 2-D and then changes to 3-D to show a difference in two different worlds and the effect is fantastic. The film in 2-D or 3-D is utterly beautiful but it is obviously meant to be enojoyed in 3-D and the execution is perfect.
The film is presented in a DTS HD Master 7.1 track. There are a few other options I was expecting but this presentation is action packed and immersive. Ralph travels through several different game worlds and each game has a variety of audio changes as well as those visual ones. The 8-bit music and sound effects of Ralphs’ world play in heavy contrast to those of the Medal of Honor/Halo style game he fights through and finally the cart racing world where the majority of the film takes place.
From fireworks to the kid friendly vroom of the carts to the dangerous weapons of Heroes Duty the audible experience of this film is spot on. Dialogue is crisp and clean throughout the film and use of special audio is handled perfectly. Trains whiz by in the game central world and fireworks get a chunky hit of bass when they explode. This film is just a joy to listen too.
The Packaging and Bonus Features
The multi-disc set comes packaged in a standard amaray case with a slipcover. The art on the slipcover is the same as on the actual cover except that it’s a 3-D presentation. It’s a fun character group shot that works well but I do wish there was a version that featured some 8-bit style of art. Also, why is it these days the slip covers look cooler than the actual covers?
The now Oscar Winning Paperman digital short film is included here and I couldn’t be happier.The film is pretty predictable story wise but it’s cute and very well executed. This is the only bonus feature that’s available both on standard DVD and blu-ray. The remaining bonus features are blu-ray only.
Disney has crafted a fun feature for pausing the film called “Disney Intermission”. Have you ever gotten annoyed pausing a movie while someone gets a sandwich or has to go to the bathroom? You won’t with this film because when you pause the film special little snippets appear that delve into all of the Easter eggs hidden in the film including but definitely not limited too little Walking Dead goodies. While there’s no depth here it’s still a lot of fun.
There’s an all too brief featurette about creating the worlds of the movie and some of the technology used, some deleted scenes, and some fun videogame commercials. That’s really all we get here. A film of this quality deserves much more attention in the bonus features department and hopefully we’ll get a better set of documentaries on the inevitable re-issue that will come when the sequel hits theaters. There needed to be a director’s commentary and definitely some more making of stuff.
Wreck-it-Ralph has a few flaws in its storytelling but for the most part the film is just plain fun, kids can enjoy it and so can adults. What I love here is that Disney isn’t just resting on its iconic character laurels. With Ralph the studio has created a new IP that should bring more movies, games, probably TV shows and everything else that Disney has done so well with their classic characters.
Overall (Not an Average) 8/10
The Movie 8.5/10
The Video 10/10
The Audio 10/10
The Packaging and Bonus Features
Overall (Not an average) 8/10
Written by Brian Clevinger
Drawn by Scott Wegener
It’s the future year of 2010 and Dr. Atomic Robo Tesla, PhD is looking to buy an old sugar factory to open a research facility when he is suddenly attacked by a villain from his past. The evil-doer is revealed to be Tyrantula, a crazy ex-girlfriend of Robo’s who has built cybernetic legs and is trying to prove how not crazy she is. The battle ensues and Atomic Robo soon realizes he is outmatched. But that does not mean he is giving up the fight.
I love a comic that doesn’t need a lot of back story to understand. Here we get a full story that is self contained and has a satisfactory resolution. We don’t need to know where Atomic Robo came from or where he is going. Tyrantula tells us everything we need to know with her crazy evil monologues. And Robo fills in with some great one-liners about superheroes and the tropes we have come to associate with them.
I like art that has its own look. Too many times in the comic book world art either gets pushed into the background or looks generic and bland. Here Scott Wegener draws very crisp and clean lines that do not make the reader have to guess what is going on in the panel.
Speaking of panels, that brings me to the use of the comiXology app to tell this story. Each panel appears with dialogue as you click through so no more spoiling big reveals or accidentally reading the wrong panels. I really like this approach and can’t wait to see how
Overall I had a good time reading this book. If you want to read a fun and fast paced book go to comiXology and buy Atomic Robo: Two-Fisted Tales: Along Came a Tyrantula.
The Story 8/10
The Art 9/10
Overall (Not an Average) 8.5/10