Advertisements
    Advertisements
  • Following Us

  • Categories

  • Check out the Archives









  • Awards & Nominations

  • Advertisements

Grant Morrison’s Seven Soldiers of Victory: The Guardian (Review)

December is “Grant Morrison month” here at the m0vie blog, as we take the month to consider and reflect on one of the most critically acclaimed (and polarising) authors working in the medium. We’ve got a special treat for you this week, which is “Seven Soldiers Week”, so check back each day for a review of one of the Seven Soldier miniseries that Morrison put together.

The Guardian really just gives Grant Morrison a chance to play with a whole bunch of high concept crazy ideas inside a loose superhero framework, while allowing the scribe to play with various outmoded comic book concepts. Of course, there are elements of that within the other stories (and, to be frank, within most other major superhero titles the author has ever written), but The Guardian stands out amongst these Seven Soldiers of Victory miniseries as perhaps the most “Morrison-esque” of them.

Making headlines...

Continue reading

Advertisements

Make This Movie: To The Manor Bourne…

We’re looking at the Bourne trilogy this week, with a review of The Bourne Identity today and one of the The Bourne Supremecy on Thursday, so I thought I’d post this nifty little bit of movie fun from The Guardian. They ran a competition for a Twitter pitch, pitching a movie in 150 characters or less, about a month ago. This was the winning entry:

To the Manor Bourne: Jason Bourne retires to the countryside. With violent consequences

And the poster…

Click to enlarge

I say scrap this Bourne Legacy stuff and just make this.

Super-Snobbery…

I was very interested to read a piece comparing Christopher Nolan to Stanley Kubrick in The Guardian over the weekend. Ignoring the fact that I don’t think it’s fair to attempt to seriously describe anyone as the “new” anything (it’s really only handy as a shortcut, to form a quick association, rather than forming the basis of a whole argument) and, if I had to, I’d say Nolan was “the new Hitchcock”, one piece stood out at me, when comparing Kubrick’s work to Nolan’s under “thematic daring”:

In the end, what are Nolan’s films actually about? Two of them are superhero flicks, two are cop movies and one is about a magician. Nolan isn’t exactly going to the wall for the big ideas. (Interestingly, by far the most radical film he’s made was that very first one, Following – a very creepy existential story about a stalker.) Kubrick made films about paedophilia, military justice, atomic obliteration, urban violence and the Vietnam war … Nolan is – at present, anyhow – a confirmed establishment figure; nothing he’s done has caused the smallest ripple of disquiet. This may change, but with another Batman film in the works I can’t see it happening just yet.

What immediately struck me about that paragraph was how ridiculously condescending it was to the genres that Nolan worked with – as if to say he’s “only” made two movies about a guy who dresses in formfitting rubber, two cop thrillers and one film about some blokes who do magic. How ridiculously patronising can you get?

If Batman hears one more person say "The Dark Knight isn't bad for a comic book movie..."

Continue reading

Do We Give Too Much Kudos to Established Directors?

There was (as ever) a rather interesting piece in the Guardian a few weeks back which suggested – what with Alice in Wonderland and Shutter Island coming out within weeks of each other and dominating film discussion in March – perhaps we tend to focus too much on established directors like Burton and Scorsese.

Because it’s one thing for a studio to take a project and market it with such frenzied hyperbole that for a week or two seeing it becomes all but obligatory for anyone wanting to remain a la mode. It’s quite another for film-goers to convince ourselves we need to see that same project through an increasingly forlorn belief in its director as a still-vital and relevant force. Whatever the implications of Burton’s Alice may be for exhibitors and all that newly-installed 3D technology, the nuts-and-bolts issue here is surely the length of time any once-great film-maker is given in the cinephile heart purely on the basis of dusty triumphs a decade or more in the past.

I thought it only fair to wait until I had seen bother of those big films to comment. Being entirely honest, I don’t think it’s entirely reasonable to lump Burton and Scorsese together as some sort joint proof of that assertion. In fact, I’d argue the two are very different sides to the same coin.

Is Burton picking his own creative bones dry?

Continue reading

Actors & Politics: A Dangerous Combination…

There is an interesting article in The Guardian written by Samantha Morton, which lauds Nicole Kidman’s decision to announce that Hollywood treats women as sex objects and Matt Damon’s announcement that he won’t do excessively violent films. They are both valid points for discussion, but I’m never quite sure what to make of it when an artist makes a public anouncement like that, clearly politicising their work. Anyone who neede Nicole Kidman to tell them that Hollywood treats women as objects obviously hasn’t been paying attention to any film released ever, and I doubt anyone will be particularly surprised to here Matt Damon won’t turn up as a lead in Saw. That’s not to diminish their observation, but part of me is always uncomfortable abou the increasing politicalisation of actors and celebrities in our culture.

kidman

Not kidding around...

Continue reading

Growing Old in Hollywood…

Is it possible for an actor to age gracefully? The Guardian has been very fruitful in providing food for thought this week and the article that grabbed my attention today is a discussion of Heath Ledger’s potential had his life not been cut so tragically short. I don’t intend to dwell on what could have, should have or would have been, but the article does raise some interesting assertions about the ageing of great actors:

If you want to propose Pacino, De Niro and Nicholson as the outstanding figures of the 70s and 80s, who can be resigned about what has happened to them? They have become pastiches of what they once were.

So, is that what really awaits our truly great actors at the end of their careers?

Grumpy - but cool - old men...

Grumpy - but cool - old men...

Continue reading

Is It Ever Appropriate to Slam a Movie Because of a Star’s Appearance?

Hmmm… Okay, maybe this isn’t entirely a fair example, but the thought occurred to me while reading the Guardian’s review of Couples’ Retreat and the reviewer spent his first paragraph critising Vince Vaugn’s weight. I wish I were kidding, but here’s the quote:

Favreau was always on the chunky side, to be fair, and he’s been doing fine behind the camera with the Iron Man movies, but back in Swingers, Vaughn had the requisite skinniness to persuade us he really was a half-starved young Hollywood actor. Now he has boy boobs, love handles and back fat. And all this (a lot of this) in a movie that requires him to wear a swimsuit most of the time.

The review then goes on to make a somewhat valid criticism of his current career choices (while kicking Jennifer Aniston, which is just mean – if a little bit justified), but speaks little about the offending movie in general. I know that it isn’t really fair to complain about a review criticising a guy’s appearance – I acknowledge that woman are probably more affected by our image-conscious society – but is it ever really fair to slam a movie based upon the lead actor’s appearance?

Phat or fat?

Phat or fat?

Continue reading