Wednesday, July 27, 2011

The All Things Fun! New Comics Vidcast for 7-27-2011

The All Things Fun! New Comics Vidcast is shot live in a real comics and gaming store in West Berlin, NJ - All Things Fun! - co-hosts Ed (schism) Evans, Allison (what's your problem) Eckel and Glenn (get off my lawn) Walker discuss the new comics out this week in two fun video segments, now in high definition, and also available on YouTube. See it here!

The first segment includes discussion of the following topics: The Flashpoint comics of the week, what is your problem, the Fear Itself comics of the week, the Defenders, Ed's leftovers, Batcave for rent, Allison's Green Lanterns, FF holding pattern, Captain America quiz and film talk, and the big Halo segueway.



The discussion continues in segment two including: Dan Slott's Amazing Spider-Man #666, Paul Cornell's Action Comics #903, Deadpool saves the comics industry, Ed's X-books, Glenn's indies, DC Retroactive 1970s Green Lantern and Justice League, Crisis on Earth-Prime, Allison's DC leftovers, Wonder Woman - not quite done yet, Ed's indies and trades, Superman Blue vs. Spider-Man Blue, and more Green Lantern toys.



In our special summer third segment with Thomas, the All Things Fun! Kids Vidcast features a kid's opinions on comics and toy-related genres. This segment includes his thoughts on: Futurama Comics #56, Richie Rich #3, Indiana Jones, pyramid theories, Young Justice #6, Simpsons, Muppets, wallets, and Captain America action figures and more movie reviews.



Be sure to check out the All Things Fun! website, and the All Things Fun! Blogs, by Allison and Glenn, and ATF! on YouTube.

And be back here every Wednesday morning at 11:30 AM EST to watch the new broadcast, and thereafter throughout the week!

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Monday, July 25, 2011

Rango

Rango ~ The first animated feature from George Lucas' Industrial Light and Magic is a disaster.

Take Don Knotts, pump him full of hallucinogenics, and have him play a computer animated lizard. Yeah, that's what Johnny Depp as Rango is like - and none of it in a good way. This is an ugly film with a bare skeleton of a plot that pretends to be much more than it is.

There are some interesting visuals done with the CGI, clever angles, different textures, but mostly a whole lot of ugly as it's about desire dwelling creatures. It's like bad scary cartoon taxidermy, and it's hard to watch.

The bat-riding hillbilly varmits arrive much too late to save this flick. The western character templates (like Eli Wallach and Clint Eastwood) and cliches, and the Chinatown comparisons and parodies can't save it. Even the Hunter Thompson cameo in the beginning can't save it. Avoid at all costs, unless you are a die-hard Depp fan, or need a nap.

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Sunday, July 24, 2011

RIP Amy Winehouse

In early 2007 friends were chattering about a stunning new voice in music called Amy Winehouse. By the summer of that same year, the single "Rehab" was everywhere and she was a superstar. And by the end of 2007, and through to the end of her life, due to her erratic and self-destructive behavior, she had become a punchline to a bad joke.

Amy Winehouse passed away yesterday, at the age of 27, due to unconfirmed circumstances. Her interesting past with various illegal substances lead many to believe it was drug or alcohol related. The singer/songwriter was a fresh new voice crossing genres and garnering multiple awards and nominations. However you see her, talent, train wreck or media target, Amy Winehouse will be missed.



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Saturday, July 23, 2011

Captain America: The First Avenger

Captain America: The First Avenger ~ This is the next in the cycle of Marvel Comics movies leading up to The Avengers next summer. This one even has the word 'Avenger' in the title. It started with Iron Man, then continued in The Incredible Hulk, Iron Man 2 and just two months ago with Thor. The Avengers are coming, and it's gonna be so cool.

Sorry, folks, I got excited. I am an old school Avengers fan, so this slow build-up to seeing one of my favorite comics on the big screen is a big big deal. But that's not happening until next year, and there's one movie left before that happens, and it's the one I saw today - Captain America: The First Avenger. Unlike Iron Man 2 which felt like an overlong ad for the upcoming Avengers, this flick does it subtly, and flawlessly ties up all the loose ends of those four previous movies.

We saw the flick on Friday afternoon (mostly to get out if the 104 degree heat) and while it was sparsely attended at first, the folks at Rave dressed one of their employees up in a makeshift closet floor Cap costume to walk around and entertain. Silly but fun, the kind of thing, in my opinion, theatres should do more often. Well, as long as he didn't shoot me with his Nerf dart-shooting shield, that is. Good, no casualties, time for the movie.

There were almost forty minutes of previews and pre-show entertainment, which was fine I suppose. We waited about an hour for the next show -and had to get it in 3D because the next 2D flick was even later- and it occurs to me that this might be the next theatre scam. It just seems too much of a coincidence that the only show within a reasonable time frame was the more expensive 3D showing at a place where the feature was showing in two different rooms in 2D and 2D had an almost hour wait in between shows.

Something is just not right. No matter, the Rave is a great theatre with terrific events and friendly staff - and even if not, anything is better than being raped by Loews again.

As it got dark and the real previews started the theatre had filled up, and filled up with more than a few young children. I had had discussions earlier in the week as to whether or not my six year old nephew should see Captain America or not, and the concensus was no. Too much gunplay, violence, the Red Skull was sure to be scary - and do you really want to have the Nazi conversation with a six year old? You know, it's true, evil is real, and all that. I was worried that maybe these parents had made a mistake, and would regret it.

As it turned out, I shouldn't have worried. Hitler, the Nazis and the Third Reich are hardly referenced in a really horrific way. It is the Red Skull (still quite scary, and props to Hugo Weaving for bringing his horror to life) and Hydra who are the true villains of the piece. the explanation for the origin and separation of Hydra from the Third Reich makes complete sense. Actually, in hindsight, it even makes the World War II sequences, sans Nazis, in Disney XD's animated "The Avengers: Earth's Mightiest Heroes" make sense as well. Other than the gunplay, the Red Skull and a few intense moments, the PG-13 rated Captain America isn't too bad for kids, and not as much to worry about as I originally thought.

This is a period film, as Captain America's story is one forged in the patriotic fires of World War II. Young Steve Rogers is too puny to serve his country, and volunteers to become a super-soldier draped in the American flag. He takes the fight to the enemy and inspires millions in the process. It's clich├ęd, and it's cheesy, but director Joe Johnston weaves together a wonderful movie that has everything. If I was to wish for the perfect Captain America movie, it could not be better than this.

They do play about with some continuity issues, but nothing that damages the character, but more fills him out. Speaking of filling out, the CGI sequences are phenomenal of title star Chris Evans as a 90 lb. weakling and as America's super-soldier. He looks great throughout the film, and unlike pretenders like Reb Brown and Matt Salinger, Evans is Captain America. Hayley Atwell's Peggy Carter is perfect and Sebastian Stan gives Bucky a wonderful spin, with the re-realized relationship between Bucky and Steve. Trust me, it's good, and quietly honestly better than seeing Bucky as a costumed sidekick. And Toby Jones is just downright creepy as Arnim Zola, and this isn't even his really creepy form from the comics. Bravo!

The action sequences are amazing, exciting and what every superhero movie should be. Comics fans of the character and those who know nothing, will be thrilled. This is important for superhero movies - to be accessible to the mainstream audience, to be true to the source material, and to be good. Yeah, this one has all three.

There are Easter eggs all over the place. Tony Stark's father Howard Stark plays a pivotal role. The Howling Commandos are here, and we're able to tell who is who without ever hearing their names. Obviously, Nick Fury's father or grandfather is in there, so as not to muddy the immortal waters. When Steve and Bucky visit the World's Fair, keep your eyes peeled for the original Human Torch - total nerdgasm for me when I saw that!

This movie has everything - humor, romance, even musical numbers, and yet, it is still one of the best superhero movies I have ever seen, and I'd venture to say I've seen most of them. Yes, better than Iron Man. And speaking of Iron Man, like all of the other Marvel movies, you need to wait through the credits for a little something extra. Actually, this time, it's not a little something - it's a big something - a sneak peek at next summer's The Avengers. DO NOT MISS. And definitely see Captain America: The First Avenger, highly recommended.

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Friday, July 22, 2011

The All Things Fun! New Comics Vidcast for 7-20-2011

The All Things Fun! New Comics Vidcast is shot live in a real comics and gaming store in West Berlin, NJ - All Things Fun! - co-hosts Ed (Mr. Evans) Evans, Allison (Squirrel Girl) Eckel and Glenn (Mr. Walker) Walker discuss the new comics out this week in two fun video segments, now in high definition, and also available on YouTube. See it here!

The first segment includes discussion of the following topics: The guide to the DC Comics new 52, the Flashpoint comics of the week, the Fear Itself comics of the week, more Marvels, including Daredevil #1, slurping sounds, the X-books, and Allison's DCU, including DC Universe Online Legends #12.



The discussion continues in segment two including: The Squirrel Girl HeroClix, DC Retroactive 1970s featuring Batman, the Flash and Wonder Woman, Ed's leftovers and indies, Glenn's indies including Butcher Baker Candlestickmaker #1, Allison needs to get out to the movies more, the Zenescope pin-up cover of the week - Grimm Fairy Tales #61, Ed's trades, the new Overstreet Price Guide and the time travelin' Batman action figures.



And our special summer third segment with Thomas is back! The All Things Fun! Kids Vidcast features a kid's opinions on comics and toy-related genres. This segment includes his thoughts on: Tiny Titans #42, Sonic Universe #30, rogues galleries, covers that don't match the insides, All-New Batman The Brave and the Bold #9, Darkwing Duck #14, Batman and Hal Jordan vs. Cyborg Superman, plush Angry Birds, Captain America HeroClix, that Mr. Walker is confused, and yes, we're still filming.



Be sure to check out the All Things Fun! website, and the All Things Fun! Blogs, by Allison and Glenn, and ATF! on YouTube.

And be back here every Wednesday morning at 11:30 AM EST to watch the new broadcast, and thereafter throughout the week!

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Thursday, July 21, 2011

The Amazing Spider-Man

Leaked to the internet unofficially, and then officially, just in time for the San Diego Comic-Con, here it is, the trailer you've been waiting for...



From all indications, it looks like we'll have to deal with the origin again, we'll have mechanical web-shooters, and perhaps they will be revealing what happened to Peter's parents. The villains might be the Green Goblin (again?) and/or the Lizard. The Amazing Spider-Man opens July 3, 2012.

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Wednesday, July 20, 2011

The Dumpsta Players Tonight - Dead 00s Revue

The Dumpsta Players are at it again with a posthumous tribute to all our fav stars who faded in the 00s! That's right -- they're all coming back for one last swan song performance in the "Dead 00's Revue"!

Expect the unexpected from all your favorites including 60s Loner Legend and outlaw Johnny Cash, the very addicted rock of Robert Palmer, jazz siren Peggy Lee, the smooth soul of Luther Vandross, the Dirty Dancing of Patrick Swayze, the 80s dance pop of Laura Branigan, the persuasive gospel according to Tammy Faye, the timeless comedy of "The Golden Girls", the very sexxxy and raunchy duo of Teena Marie and Rick James, the exquisite feline seductress Eartha Kitt, legendary punk band The Ramones, and the very King of Pop, Michael Jackson!

Many more stars are still being added!!

Come see what happens when we stir the melting pot of deathly delights in the -- "DEAD 00'S REVUE"!!!!

AT: Bob and Barbara's, 1509 South Street, Philadelphia PA, 215-545-4511, $1.99 21+
TONIGHT! Doors open at 10 PM, Showtime at 11 PM Sharp!

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Tuesday, July 19, 2011

More Coming Soon...



The Dark Knight Rises, the final installment in Christopher Nolan's Batman trilogy, starring Christian Bale, Michael Caine, Gary Oldman and Anne Hathaway, opens Summer 2012.



The remake/re-imagining of Conan the Barbarian opens in August, in 3D.



And if you just can't get enough Dark Knight, Batman: Year One is released on DVD and Blu-Ray this September.

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Monday, July 18, 2011

Coming Soon...



Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows, starring Robert Downey Jr. and Jude Law, opens December 16th, 2011.



Disney's John Carter opens March 9th, 2012.



The Muppets, with Amy Adams and Jason Segel and Chris Cooper (and the Muppets) opens Thanksgiving 2011.

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Sunday, July 17, 2011

Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Part 2

Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Part 2 ~ One of the things I like most about this movie is that it gets right down to it. There is no wasting time with introductions and what-has-gone-befores, it just jumps right in where Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Part 1 left off, and let's get real - isn't that what any movie with the words 'part 2' in its title should do?

This flick has already, before the weekend is over, broken box office records, so I think it's safe to say most of the viewing public knows the score and is there to see how it all ends up. It's a pet peeve of mine. All that's needed is a good story, we don't need every character's entire background. And don't even get me started on superhero origin stories. We don't need to know it every time.

Our hero and his two sidekicks, looking every bit of late late teens and eight movies, move the search for horcruxes and the battle with Voldemort to Hogwarts. There's a lot of bloodshed and lost friends but we knew that, at least those of us who read the book. And that's another thing, not that I mind it - there's not a lot here I remember from the book. It could be my age, and my memory, but then again, for me, when the movies have gone into non-book territory it has always worked well.

I wasn't quite sure what to make of the way white afterlife scenes. They kinda reminded me of The Matrix and PBS' The Lathe of Heaven, and not in a good way. The Harry Potter-is-dead scenes went on a bit too long for my tastes, and while subtle in the books, I thought the Harry-as-Christ analogy was hammered a bit too hard here.

All that said, I liked the movie a lot. It was everything it should have been and more. I loved Neville Longbottom in every scene he appeared in, and wished he and Luna had been in the epilogue. It's a shame it's over, for now. Highly recommended.

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Friday, July 15, 2011

The All Things Fun! New Comics Vidcast for 7-13-2011

The All Things Fun! New Comics Vidcast is shot live in a real comics and gaming store in West Berlin, NJ - All Things Fun! - co-hosts Ed (The Retailer) Evans, Allison (The Fangirl) Eckel and Glenn (The Curmudgeon) Walker discuss the new comics out this week in two fun video segments, now in high definition, and also available on YouTube. See it here!

The first segment includes discussion of the following topics: Enunciate, little head Bane has so many problems, the Flashpoint comics of the week, including Emperor Aquaman, Deathstroke, Frankenstein, Booster Gold and Citizen Cold, Scott Kolins and the guns of the Rogues, the Fear Itself comics of the week, Ed's Marvels, and a day without Deadpool is like a day without sunshine.



The discussion continues in segment two including: Lantern Corps action figures, the cloying Superman #713, Red Robin and the Black Bat, the War of the Green Lanterns - still ending, Red Wing white space, Mothra monster cop, Joss Whedon's Dollhouse, Ed's indies, Glenn's quick comic rundown, too many comics, Ed's trades, and Allison's fastest Batcave evah.



The All Things Fun! Kids Vidcast returns next week!

Be sure to check out the All Things Fun! website, and the All Things Fun! Blogs, by Allison and Glenn, and ATF! on YouTube.

And be back here every Wednesday morning at 11:30 AM EST to watch the new broadcast, and thereafter throughout the week!

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Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Sherwood Schwartz 1916-2011

Writer/producer Sherwood Schwartz passed away in Los Angeles this morning after several surgeries. He was 94. Schwartz was best known for being the creator of two of the most memorable television series of the 1960s and 1970s - "The Brady Bunch" and "Gilligan's Island."

Both shows had a huge influence on the childhoods of of several generations, and could be said to have even formed what many people considered sitcom humor. As a child myself, I don't remember a time when these two programs were not on the air in syndication, and also that they had both appeared on every UHF station in the Philadelphia area. I also remember vividly having to be home on Friday nights to see new episodes of "Brady Bunch" and coming home for lunch to see reruns as well.

Both series lived on for decades in syndication and in animation and reunions, and for the Bradys, in film as well - such is the legacy of Sherwood Schwartz.



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