Tuesday, February 28, 2012

On Fire.

Ghost Rider sucks.

Not just Ghost Rider: Spirit of Vengeance or 2007's Ghost Rider but the comics too. The character sucks. It's a tough realization to come to. Ghost Rider, like many heroes (usually antiheroes actually) created in the 70's and the 90's were pretty one dimensional. There was a reason I feel that the first series run of the comic ran from '72 to '83 and then a new series started in '90. The 80's was this little oasis between two (mostly) barren wastelands of decades. The '80 were dark for comics but darkness with depth. That was not Ghost Rider. In my opinion, He was born out of late/post Vietnam War motorcycle gang image and worship. The idea of a biker superhero sounds pretty good but other than the image (along with a half hearted origin and motive) there wasn't much else to the character. It's no better today. Even popular and gritty writers of the present such as Garth Ennis, Daniel Way and Jason Aaron have taken a crack at making Ghost Rider relevant again. None of them succeeded even though their stories were pretty interesting. The bottom line is, once you spend 3 seconds saying to yourself "oh cool, he's got a flaming skull and chains" there isn't anything deeper to hit on.
So why does Ghost Rider: Spirit of Vengeance suck? Well, first we'll start with Nicholas Cage, who's strategy for the past several years seems to have been "I'll just act crazy on camera and they'll think it's good right?". Wrong. Then there are the directors Mark Neveldine and Brian Taylor who have previously been the writer/directors of the Crank films as well as Gamer. When it was first announced they were directing, many were excited about them bringing their manic style action to the franchise. Instead, the film is for lack of better word, boring. There are so many shots within action scenes that are held and focused on for way too long, almost as if they were trying to fill space.
The two things this movie has going for it are the bleak but beautiful stretches of Eastern European highway that are featured in an action sequence or two. Also Idris Elba's portrayal of Moreau, a heavy drinking french monk who convinces Cage's Johnny Blaze to help protect a young boy from evil forces. Yes, that small bit of plot I described there is exactly as recycled and bullshit as it sounds.

So to sum up: Ghost Rider: Spirit of Vengeance sucks.

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Dollar Day Double Feature 2/7/12

Went to Movie Magic and caught a double feature of Sherlock Holmes 2 and The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn Part 1. Not much to say here so i'll be quick.

Sherlock Holmes 2: I really enjoyed the first one. Cast was great, Richie's manic directing created an incredibly fun atmosphere and it all didn't come off too gimmicky. Second time around however, it kinda comes off gimmicky. Especially the beginning. I am happy to say that it does finish stronger than it starts. Refreshing, considering how many movies like this go the opposite way. It wasn't at all bad. I just think that maybe the formula only works once.

The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn Part 1: Ok, i'm kinda pissed at myself for not having more to say here, or at least to rant about. It's just bad and there aren't a lot of ways to say it. All of the Twilight movies have been the same. Capable films made using horrendous source material. It's that simple. When I saw it, I thought Eclipse was the best so far and was therefor hoping the last two would continue the trend upward. Breaking Dawn part 1 however is the worst yet, mostly thanks to it being one half of what should have been one whole movie. The ONLY action scene in the whole movie is in the last 20 minutes. Not that the series has been known for the quality of it's action beats but that is just rediculess. The first half is some kind of bizarre interior design wet dream (which to be fair, all the Twilight films have been), the second half is a David Cronenberg movie. If David Cronenberg sucked, which he does not. It's all pretty awful.