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Smolemon Links...Comics & Blog
Smolemon likes...Riot Not Diet
In the technological world that I see around me, I am amazed by what the human race has achieved. We are truly in a digital age that was unimaginable just 20 years ago. I look forward to what the future will bring; if all the possible inventors in the world don't waste too much time on angry birds (I swear it will be the downfall of man).
But sometimes I think some things should have been invented already ... they seem semi realistic, just get on with it, come on.
-The new tooth-
Tooth ache due to a rotten tooth? No worries ... just rip out the old one and put in a new tooth seed. A few weeks later ... brand new tooth. It may hurt at first but the new tooth would have a ten year guarantee. Sorted.
And you say you want shark teeth? Fine ... go for it, you nutter.
Chances of it happening in your lifetime: Surprisingly realistic according to current research, but will probably just be created in a lab and never made commercial.
-The no hassle car-
You want a personal vehicle that can get you from point A to B without having to worry about keeping it maintained. You want a car that doesn't cause any hassle, just fill it up with petrol (or electricity if you are eco-conscious) when it requires.
I don't care if it's a flat packed vehicle I have to go to the shop to buy a new one once a year rather than having an MOT, service, and all that other rubbish.
Cars are a lot of hassle to say that they are just glorified meat sack transporters.
Chances of it happening in your lifetime: Hell no, that would be too easy.
-The dream recorder-
"I had a dream last night, it was like a film, it was amazing"
"Ohh sounds interesting, tell me about it"
"ok, well, I went to the shops and my girlfriend was there, only she was a walrus ... then Jessica Alba turned up and said she loved me but there was a zombie Justin Bieber chasing her and spitting on his fans as he went ..."
"Stop there ... it doesn't sound interesting at all, it just sounds weird"
"Oh? Let me show you on my dream recorder..."
... *play* ...
"OMG! THAT WAS AMAZING!!!"
Chances of it happening in your lifetime: Highly doubtful. Though they can pick up brain waves and try to decipher them ... our brains are just too damned complicated for us (or our computers) to understand. Dreams are just loose ends of memory connections to the hippocampus that are being filed away and attempted to be understood or deleted. Until we truly understand the brain, we won't be getting a HD dream recorder ... sorry.
But who knows ... there may be a massive breakthrough any day now for any of these inventions!
One day you may be splitting up with your significant other because they looked through your dreams and caught you banging their friend from work in the city of Atlantis.
Anyway, stop reading this article, and get inventing...
Do you have any inventions that you can't believe hasn't been invented yet?
One film that stands out to me as a game changing piece of science fiction over the last decade is 'District 9'. So when I heard that the writer and director of 'District 9', Neill Blomkamp, had another science fiction film coming to the cinemas ... I got a little excited.
To get me even more tantalised ... the trailer looked fantastic and the story sounded like it would be delving into some truly interesting territories.
The film follows Max DeCosta (Matt Damon) in a dystopian future where the earth is overpopulated and Mexican (for some reason) ... meanwhile, a Utopian satellite for the super wealthy elite (the titular Elysium) floats above, out of reach of the poor. When Max is involved in an accident (with a radioactive oven for robots?) he has nothing left to fear ... and decides he's going to live the high life (literally).
Visually; the film doesn't disappoint. It looks glorious! The rotating 'Halo' style ring that is Elysium looks magnificent. The robots that inhabit this world are amazing ... I have no idea how the graphics could be so good, I'm still unsure if they were real or computer generated. Wonderful.
Unfortunately, the visuals were the only thing I could find amazing about this film.
The story of Elysium in muddled and ... well ... it's pretty dull. I found myself wondering when something exciting would happen, and when something exciting did happen it was poorly done and over quickly. The 109 minute run time felt like 3 hours.
The script is convoluted and preachy, with no clear direction on what the message is. There are some interesting moments that appear sporadically but they are quickly rushed off in favour of talks about Meerkats or some nonsensical political dribble.
I felt nothing for the Matt Damon's character, I didn't dislike or like him ... he was just ... there, I guess. Much like the other characters in 'Elysium' ... they are all a bit naff, with no real motivation.
Sharlto Copley did a great turn as 'Agent Turner', but what starts as a fantastic character that gets more brutal and interesting as time goes on; reaches a peak and the descends into pantomime bad guy before the end of the film.
Wagner Moura as 'Spider' was the only stand out supporting character that grows and feels natural, but he is not given enough screen time.
Speaking of screen time ... William Fichtner (a favourite of mine) seems like he is set to be a big ol' baddie (what he does best) but he is quickly pushed to one side in the first act and never given a chance to shine (the only action scene he is involved in has him strapped in a chair looking bemused for the duration).
Jodie Foster ... I can't even be bothered to finish a sentence abou
'Elysium' is visual treat but all style and no substance ... a dull as dishwater, disappointing follow up to 'District 9' and a missed opportunity. Worth a watch for the graphics but worth avoiding for the script.
Every little part of a movie can make or break a great bit of entertainment ... but some things get higher recognition than the rest.
The humans that made the film get loads of attention, even the made up monsters and creatures get people raving about how awesome they are. I was even nattering on about how good the sounds were in 'Kick-Ass 2' last week.
Other things don't get as much recognition ...
The catering company filled up the actors stomachs with quality food and not once do you hear a mention of how full the actors looked. We don't give recognition to the humble napkin that must have wiped the mouth of many performers before the camera rolled. Have you seen how many films have desks with paperweights on them? I never ever see paperweights in the credits and they did a perfectly good job (of, erm, weighting paper?).
These are only a few examples! Without these things ... the movie industry would be in total anarchy!
Well I thought it was time one thing that has been overlooked for many years came forward and took some credit for making movies a little bit better ... the humble gate.
So, without further ado (because I know for a fact you are just desperate to know) I give you ...
... My Top 5 movie gates (with some possible movie spoilers)...
Gate #5: The Exorcist
I'm not even sure this gate makes an appearance in the final film or not ... but if you look closely at the iconic poster for the film ... the gate is in the spotlight, and some pesky priest turned up and got in the way. It is obvious that the gate is in fact the titular Exorcist in this poster ... which leads me to believe that the film was changed in post-production to have a human priest perform the exorcism. When will the film industry realise that audiences will accept a gate as their lead protagonist?!
Gate #4: King Kong
This gate adds an extra layer of mystery to a movie classic. Why does a giant ape, that can climb the empire state building (whilst holding a screaming woman in one hand) with ease, not just climb the wall surrounding the gate? Does he enjoy using the gate or something? I always see this gate as a type of 'blind date' reveal for Kong and his blonde sacrifice (and I bet they don't meet again after that first date).
Gate #3: Labyrinth
After going the wrong way for most of the films running time (don't take navigation advice from a worm in future, or you'd have gone straight to that castle) Sarah finally reaches a massive gate that will take her into the Goblin kingdom ... and the gate turns into a f*cking kick ass muppet Goblin controlled robot gate and attacks her whole gang, slowly, with a ginormous weapon (and I'm not even talking about David Bowie's codpiece)!
Gate #2: Stargate
More of a stable wormhole generator than a gate ... but it's called Stargate so I get to add it to this list. I don't know if a garden gate would have had the same effect as a sideways, glowy, water wall anyway. It can take you to another planet where you can get licked by a spacecow (an item on more bucket lists than you would imagine, probably).
Gate #1: Jurassic park
Yep, of course it's Jurassic Park!
Just look at that majestic gate ... it holds the dreams of every child (and child at heart) behind its massive wooden frame ... it screams out "I've got dinosaurs ... come on in" ... and my god, I would, as this would be the gate to my own personal heaven. Welcome to Jurassic Park!!!
I wonder how long they leave those flames on for ... the gas bill must be massive (spared no expense).
Do you agree or disagree with my list? Can you think of anything else that deserves a bit of recognition? Leave me a message!
When I decided to start reviewing something to be uploaded every Thursday (so far just new films, but when the summer blockbuster period is over I will be finding other things) I thought that I would hit a lemon soon enough.
I reviewed 'The Wolverine' and loved it, then I reviewed 'Alan Partridge: Alpha Papa' and loved that too ... and now it's time to review 'Kick-Ass 2' ...
Seriously, I really don't love every film I watch ... but I really loved this film too!!!
I'm even going to (controversially) go as far as saying ... I liked it more than the first film.
The story follows Kick-Ass as he joins forces in a super team of wannabe heroes, meanwhile, Hit girl is struggling to become the "Normal girl" that society expects her to be. Little do they know that things will get serious when an old enemy comes looking for revenge.
The jokes were hilarious, the action was (how it should be) exciting, and the story was decent ... it had a moral to it and everything ... though I can't remember what that moral was exactly as I can't stop thinking about Lindy Booth as Night B*tch (A Harley Quinn type character who I am now madly in lust with).
Even though 'Kick-Ass 2' is a sequel, it still feels fresh and new ... there are some great little touches that make it stand out (the coolest subtitles ever is an example) ... and you get a feeling that anyone could die at any time (something you don't see in blockbusters often, which keeps the tension high).
Sound effects and the music in the film need an honourable mention ... from the cracking of a neck to the beautifully epic score ... everything sounded fantastic!
No film is completely perfect, so here are my minor niggles ...
- Jim Carrey needed more screen time (he is a legend)
- There is a (much too long) scene including the "music" of 'Union J' ... nobody should be put through that, it's inhumane!
- I want to see 'Kick-Ass 3' ... right NOW!
You can see 'Kick-Ass 2' at cinemas across the UK now ... it is awesome!
... oh, and stick around at the end as there is a short post credits scene!
Alan Partridge is like Marmite ... no wait ... Mustard, Colman's Mustard ... You either love him or hate him (and he's based in Norwich).
Personally, I love Alan Partridge ... he is the king of cringe in my eyes (so this review may be slightly biased), and if you are not a fan of the tv show ... this film will not win you over; it is pure fan service (but may still appeal to the casual cinema goer).
Whenever a film comes out based on a tv show, the inevitable question will be "is it like a long episode". In the case of Alpha Papa ... yes it is, but that is the wonderful part about this film. They don't do completely outrageous things with the character, they just give Alan Partridge the chance to talk a lot and have a bit of the lime light he has craved for so long ... and it is hilarious!
The story follows Alan as he deals with a corporate takeover of the radio station he works for (North Norfolk Digital). When Alan's aged DJ colleague is sacked to appeal to younger radio listeners ... a hostage situation takes place, and only Alan can save the day (oh no!).
The funniest parts aren't in the trailer (thank god!). Once the laughs started coming, the whole cinema was loudly laughing ... Other than two teenagers who were sat near me and snogging each other's faces off. They left before the end of the film, but I don't think they really cared what they were watching (ahh to be young and in love ... disgusting).
Alpha Papa will sit nicely on the end of the whole Alan Partridge DVD collection ... it is full of laughs, (destined to be classic) quotes, and it feels like a natural progression for the character. It was great to see some familiar faces too. I laughed the whole way through and I am certain I missed a few jokes ... I can see this film getting better with time on repeat viewings.
A welcome return for Norwich's finest ... Back of the net!
'Alan Partridge: Alpha Papa' is in Cinemas now!