28 February 2007

Ooh-da-lolly! (Movie Review 2)

Visited my father today, who had surgery. He won't be up and around for a while still, and hopefully he will recover. In the evening, we did have a family activity planned, coincidentally a movie night at the local library.

Being the library and especially being "family movie night", they won't show anything overly offensive or action-oriented to the kids, and they did deliver on that. Tonight's entertainment was a copy of the Disney animated film "Robin Hood".

This movie was a favorite of mine when I was growing up, and I really don't know too many kids (or even adults) who are unfamiliar with the movie. So therefore, instead of a summary, I'll just pick a few parts. And especially to say that the age of the movie is showing more than a bit. Pat Buttram (as the Sheriff) has one of the most distinctive voices for voice-work, and it is especially suited to this role. And Phil Harris' voice (Little John) is also highly suited to the character it was applied. I noticed in both the "train" sequence when the fair breaks down into chasing as well as the song that Little John speaks, the use of more than a couple twangers which also date the movie rather aggressively.

I also forgot exactly how much of a deus ex machina the movie ended with. But on the other hand, while I may cringe at it in my late-20s, it really does come at the perfect time in the movie, as my children now were just about ready for the movie to end anyway... and when I was younger, this ending was fine too.

In complete summation, Disney's "Robin Hood" is what movies nowadays fail to be. It is unabashedly tied to its late-60s to early-70s era, and is also unabashedly mostly a children's movie.

Disney, Dreamworks, and other animation studios have really forgotten a key fact about the child demographic that they purportedly try to court... that these children really do not have the attention span for the movies they produce. "Robin Hood" clocks in at about 80 minutes, whereas most recent films usually pass an hour and a half and can drag for small children.

Though of course, the major downside is the fact that this film really doesn't have much to recommend to the adults other than possibly a huge dose of nostalgia, and possibly to try to figure out which bear Phil Harris played better, Baloo or Little John.

27 February 2007

Movie Review: "The Brothers Grimm"

Already a new topic. My wife and I obtained a membership to another video rental place this weekend, and we finally had a chance to view one of the movies she rented: "The Brothers Grimm".

It stars Matt Damon and Heath Ledger as the titular brothers. The beginning of the movie reminded me rather much of "Dragonheart", with the same scams-for-money plans I saw in the former film. As the movie goes on, the brothers get roped into a scheme to help a village, whose girls are being kidnapped. Already kidnapped: Little Red Riding Hood and Gretel of "Hansel and Gretel" fame. No word on if the monster responsible also stole Britney Spear's sanity.

Anyway, the brothers get to this village. There they find a "Jungle Girl"-type knockoff somewhere near the village, who decides to help because her own sisters had been kidnapped by some strange thing in the forest. She agrees to guide them into the woods, coincidentally to the correct place. While Damon and Ledger flail about a few times, the mysterious spirit captures more children... we had more time to kill, of course. The captures are at least interesting... one was a horse who essentially swallowed one girl, and another was a girl who was consumed by a mud ball which ended up becoming the Gingerbread Man.

Anyway, the Grimm brothers continue to flail about in the woods, but now they're being chased by a wolf who turns into a man (decent effects there). They roughly figure out the secret of the place that Jungle Girl takes them, that a witch is trying to get back her beauty. Then there's French soldiers, some more decent effects with trees, and a [SPOILER SPACE] false alarm as we thought that Matt Damon FINALLY bit the big one... to no avail. Of course, the Grimm brothers live to fight and pronounce new linguistic tendencies for at least the next couple decades.

The film was earnest enough, and was directed by Terry Gilliam... however, I would not be surprised if it would make a decent MSTing (or Rifftrack.)

If this thing was about thirty minutes shorter (putting the length closer to 90 minutes rather than 120), it would probably have been decent. My attention definitely wandered a couple times though. YMMV.

Stay tuned for our next installment, as the Grimm brothers attempt to find tail on a few more fairies.

First Post:


We shall see if this will be a good idea in the future, but now AMFAS has a blog! In here, you will probably hear about fifty to seventy-five excuses as to why we don't have new content, more than a bit of complaining, and writing on a range of topics from the worlds of MSTing, anime and Japanese culture, fanfiction, and also real-world things such as politics, sports, news items, and even a few personal posts about my family.

I really have no idea how many people will even care about this attempt at blogging, but I have at least noticed one thing. I've noticed that when I tend to write things down, I end up remembering them. That's one of the magic parts of MST3k, I've always thought, that good and funny heckles can actually be documented for future generations. This way, I get to remember more of my life, hopefully not repeat some of my most major mistakes, and really learn how to use my time in a way that's better for me. And anyone that cares to read my long-winded and pedantic writing, please feel free to yell a few things my way... after all, heckling has been my fanfiction trade for the past seven years now.

And because I wouldn't mind a baseline, I'll put down the following.

Currently working on:
Two MSTings, a Xeno/NGE MSTing and a Sailor Moon original MSTing.
One fanfic, a Ranma/Sailor Moon crossover.
Actual real-life job.
A family, my wife and three children.
And of course, my goals and dreams.

So, to sum up this first post, what you will find in this blog is mostly random and unconnected thoughts on a wide range of topics. Even if this is nothing more than a personal diary, that is still a noble goal and anyone who would like to read along (and/or comment) is more than welcome.