Planes and Planes: Fire and Rescue

So, I recently watched both of these films since they were on TV. I found cars adorable. Who knew living cars with eyes for windshields could be that cute? The larger eyes really work wonders for their design and conveniently hide what’s actually inside the vehicles.

Anyway, Planes is set in the same world, but now about planes, a crop duster named Dusty, specifically. He wants to be a racing plane and joins the race around the world after some training from an older, experienced and not flying anymore plane.

The plot is pretty standard. You can most likely guess what happens just when each character is introduced. But those planes are cute, especially the Mexican racer. Still, there’s the bad guy racer that’s arrogant and wants to win at all costs. The initial dislike towards Dusty since he’s not an actual racing plane. Him gaining respect of his peers.

There’s also the fallout between Dusty and his mentor. All of the stuff is here. But I still think the world of cars is just really interesting. I’m pretty sure I saw stairs somewhere even though everyone has wheels! What’s up with that?

Of course at the end, Dusty wins. It’s a fun, simple film.

Planes: Fire and Rescue, I enjoyed this one much more. It’s the first movie of this world not based around racing. And it covers a pretty cool subject of fighting forest fires and the strategies involved. Mostly contain first and then work on putting it out later.

The characters are all so designed around archtypes, though. Not that I find that’s a bad thing, especially in kid’s films. They can learn and get used to certain types of characters while having a lot of fun watching firefighting action with planes.

The locations are not as exotic since Dusty’s just staying in one national park. The fire effects are pretty good, though. Really intense. The world of Cars always seems to get away with some pretty horrifying injuries based on the fact that the objects are cars and planes. In Fire and Rescue, someone gets burned badly enough that their paint starts to boil. Can you imagine if that was skin? It really makes situations feel more serious and dire when stuff like that happens.

Planes and Planes: Fire and Rescue are nice diversions that build on the world of cars. I just really like seeing Cars version of all popular cities and landmarks. Its pretty cool seeing everything adapted for use with vehicles.

Fun, if standard, movies.

Mad Max, Fury Road

I have wanted to see this for a while, and I finally did! It really reminds me of John Wick. A simple, but poignant plot and a lot of great action, only Mad Max is with cars and insane people.

I really enjoy just how little they tell in the movie. There’s no bantering. Every line of dialogue is meant to explain something. Max, particularly, tends to just grunt in the beginning instead of talking. It really takes him a lot of time to open up, and he’s arguably not the main character of the film. He’s just the wanderer that goes to a place, witnesses their struggle and maybe helps out a bit.

Furiousa is the one that really has past connections to the main bad guy, Immortan Joe. She’s also the one actively trying to defy him  and causes the whole movie. She’s driving a truck full of things Immortan Joe wants. They are on a road. Everyone is furious.

This movie is just hich octane ridiculousness all the way, with a few quiet and creepy scenes along the way. But really, just the culture of the Warboys is really fun to watch. They are brainwashed deathseekers of the most awesome caliber. Quite a few of them get great scenes too, and are shown to be pretty badass. The pole guys are really cool.

This movie is just cool fun action at its core. Driving through badlands with cobbled together cars leaving a trail of death and destruction. Who doesn’t like that? I sure enjoyed it greatly.

If they do do a sequel, I wonder if they’ll just stick with Max in a new place and not have any of the old characters. Might be for the best.

The Shadow Hunters, Premiere

The Shadow Hunters, an urban fantasy where monsters and magic are tangled up with the normal world, and the namesake shadow hunters stop them from hurting humans. Still have not read the book, but I have seen the movie. So I will do some comparisons just because it’s impossible to get out of my mind.

As far as the actors are concerned, I don’t have a preference of one over the other. I liked Clary’s acting in the show, though, especially her panicked searching of her apartment. Effects wise, of course the movie is going to be better. The CGI monsters, though, I wonder if, since they are so humanoid in shape, could be better served by having suits and costumes. And I’m saying that after watching some Face Off, so I know there can be really great-looking stuff.

I am alright with sparkles instead of blood in the fight scenes. I’m glad there/s something spraying out. It makes the combat feel more impactful, even if the swords acted like laser blades that just passed through people.

I am really starting to harp on fight scenes full of quick cuts and jerky camera movement. I know why they are used (to hide them not actually wanting to hurt actors and actors that don’t have great martial arts ability), but it’s just unfortunate that it looks so unclear. This show isn’t bad, but it’s not good about it either. Just sort of in the middle.

One thing I liked more in the show than the movie is Luke telling Valentine’s men that he doesn’t care about Clary. In the show, it’s much more believable when he’s not tied up to a chair at a massive disadvantage in the whole situation.

What I thought was unnecessary was the flashback to young Clary. I think Magnus would be fine introduced just as a mysterious guy without knowing if he was friend or foe. And already a gratuitous chest shot. I’m not sure of the book, but movie Simon was a more adorkable type. The show also seems to follow that same type, but when the adorkable character has the shirtless scene and abs, just dang.

As for the other changes from the original book stories? (Which I’m assuming that the movie version was more faithful) I don’t mind it at all. Don’t know the original book so changes like that don’t bother me. It might upset fans, though, since a lot of stuff has changed. The institue is all high tech and full of people now, which does kinda sap the atmosphere of the show.

Well, let’s see how the rest of the series shapes up. Seems to be about par with the movie right now.

The Chronicles of Shannara, Premiere

You know, I realized I haven’t done a premiere video in a while when I was typgin in my tags and the premiere option popped up as one of my previous entries. So let’s start it up again with the Chronicles of Shannara, a fantasy show based on the Shannara series by Terry Brooks. The second (or is it third since the first episode was a double episode?) will be out by the time this is up, but I haven’t seen it as of writing this.

This show appears to be based on a post-apocalyptic future. This isn’t really a spoiler since they show Earth in the opening title and several old modern (our modern, not their modern) structures overgrown with plants. Dunno how that’s going to play in if at all. Otherwise, this show is fantasy with druids, elves, mad-max trolls and more.

I have not read the books so I won’t be doing any comparisons. In general, I find I enjoy the film/television adaptations more if I don’t know the source material. Usually, I’ll go check out the books afterwards.

Anyway, Chronicles of Shannara starts of feeling kind of teen drama-y. It’s not what I’m particularly looking for in my fantasy. Still, the other parts were interesting. Will and Allanon traveling together was nice, getting to see that old druid keep. The tree, Ellcrys, looks really nice and it was just nasty when it starts getting sick.

What I am hoping for are good fights with the demons. So far, there hasn’t been any huge action showings, just the horror of finding the aftermath. After playing a lot of Dark Souls, I kinda hope for those kind of deliberate slow slashes as giant demons chase after them. With some magic thrown in, maybe.

Still, the concept is really interesting. Tree locking away all of the monsters, and now they’re all coming back? Time to race to save the world. The first episode was mostly setup mixed with teen drama. I am hoping Allanon isn’t the mentor type that eventually dies. He’s great. I’ll need to see the other characters in action more before I pass judgment on them.

Still, this is a pure (post-apocalyptic) fantasy show, so I’m going to watch it since I really enjoy the genre. Sy-fy is pumping out a lot of great sci-fi shows. I hope someone pushes out a lot of pure fantasy shows. An alright start that’s going to keep me watching for a while more at least. Let’s see how future episodes go!

The Librarians, Season Finale

Yes, the magical artifact show is back! The first season was great, and I was really happy to hear a second. And I think there’s going to be a third, too. Fantastic!

The first season finale was one of my favorite things ever in just how every other episode from the season became important. The second season finale wasn’t quite that way, though it was still fun and magical. While I thought it was a bit confusing and probably could have used a two-parter, the rest of the season was great.

There were episodes that focused on each character, and apparently Cassandra has math vision just as a normal ability now.

I did want the theme of fictionals to carry on more through the episodes. They were really only in the opening. It would have been cool for the librarians to face off against so many other characters, especially those that have been changed by modern movies. I liked original Frankenstein’s monster a lot. Moriarty was a fun character. He has that sort of you don’t know whether to trust him or not feel. It was cool how his attempts to help came with pre-judgment by the Librarians just because of the book character of Moriarty.

My favorite episode would have to be the one where they were trapped in a time loop. It was just really tough to watch and shows that even a time loop can be really damaging to the one person that remembers it. That episode was really great all around from everyone.

As for the main villain, I wanted him in more episodes. In the first season, DuLoch was around more being a pain. In this season, it’s mostly Moriarty engaging the heroes rather than Prospero. Noah Wyle is in the show more, I think. I wonder if he’ll become a main cast member in the third season? I don’t know if that would be good or bad since we have an established team and he has repeatedly shown to be more comfortable working alone. I’m fine having him around for the big happenings, though.

The show is still a fun mixture of mythology, original ideas and character interaction. The Librarians team is just great from their banter with each other to their reactions to all of the weird thing happening around them. They panic is a badass way if such a thing is possible. The individual cases are just as fun and interesting as the first season with some high dramatic points thrown in.

I can’t wait for more Librarians.

iZombie, Winter Finale

Super late, but here it is.

Aww yeah, iZombie. This will somewhat be spoiler free. I really enjoyed iZombie in the first season and the second season is doing great. It follows Liv as she continues to struggle with the problems of being a zombie, especially now that both her best friend and her boyfriend knows about it. There is plenty of drama in between the characters, some that come from the new enemy of the season, Max Rager. Blaine is still kicking around, too.

So this has everything from the first season turned up. The fun part of each episode is still Liv on various brain personalities. This time, though, the brains seem to have a much greater effect. It might seem like just taking things a step too far, but it is also a source of a lot of problems that Liv now gets lost more in the brains she eats.

Clive is still fun to watch and just how much he avoids any of the strangeness happening around, especially how he rolls with whatever Liv is doing at the time. They are some of my favorite parts of the show.

One complaint I do have is how Liv’s family just drops off again after a scene in the beginning. Sure, the season is only half over, but the still only come in when it’s convenient. It’s the same complaint I had about the brother in the first movie. His going to work at Meat Cute happens at the speed of plot, especially assuming Liv’s cases happen at once per week.

Still, Liv and the other main characters are all great, and the overall plot going on is fun, too. iZombie is still fun to watch. They can throw as many ridiculous brains to live as they got.

BBC’s Sherlock, And Sherlock in general

The Abominable Bride is out, and it is a scenario that takes the modern show of Sherlock back to it’s roots in old London. I thought it was just going to be a fun little what-if kind of thing, but it turned out to have all the dramatics and flair of the regular show while tying in to the main plot. And it’s also a fun romp back in the past, though the characters didn’t feel all that different other than John’s thoughts on women’s role and the lack of technology.

This episode was stuch a mind trip. What I liked best was the creepy feeling as you figured out something was wrong with the old London world. It started with just small terms slipping in there, but it was enough. That spinning transition shot, though. *Shakes head* At least spin it clockwise to show time passing  forwards.

What I really liked was them pointing out the perception Watson gives out with his stories versus the actual Sherlock that Watson knows. And how Watson insists that Sherlock dresses like what people expect of him. This show still has those sharp, wit jabs to break up the dramatic parts.

But on to the main reason for me to post this. I’ve been wanting to do this for a while now, and since Sherlock is back at the forefront, I think this is a good time. I wanted to compare the more recent versions of Sherlock from the show, Sherlock, Elementary and the movie, Sherlock Holmes. I will not be doing Mister Holmes as I haven’t seen it.

But as for the three above, I’m just going to talk about what I enjoy about each and which versions of the characters I prefer.

Let’s start with the shows and movie overall. The great thing about BBC’s Sherlock is their length. They are practically TV movies, and with so few episodes, each one has a lot of kick to it. They pull off some great shots and scenes, and I like the word swirl that shows Sherlock’s thoughts.

Elementary, having the most time out of the three, gives me a lot better look at their version of the characters. Also, I enjoy the frequency and their twists on the character. I particularly liked the Kitty arc. It’s a shame that Natalie Dormer is so popular now. I think the show wanted to use her more but couldn’t.

The movie Sherlock Holmes has a more action packed Holmes. It’s not that the other two can’t take care of themselves, but this Holmes does that awesome play out the fight in his mind thing and then make that happen. And then they pull out an Oh Crap when Moriarty starts doing the same. The old londol stylings are also great to watch.

Now for individual character comparions.

I like the RDJ Sherlock the best. He feels like he can function in the world around him if he puts in the effort. Of course John helps a lot, but he’s a British gentleman through and through. JLM Sherlock is my second favorite just because he seems the most human out of the three. He has major flaws, admits them and is actively trying to work on them. BC Sherlock is a huge asshole and shows no signs of wanting to change, though he is arguably the most efficient.

As for Watson, I have a tie between Jude Law and Lucy Liu. Jude Law is a Watson after many years of working with Sherlock. He feels equal to Sherlock in that if he put in the same effort, he could get the same results. Lucy Liu actually is shaping up to be a detective! Sure, she’s not a badass soldier like the other Watson’s, but she’s shown to be capable in solving her own cases. And it’s shown just how much Sherlock appreciates her. Martin Freeman, though, his John seems to be forever going to be the sidekick that does all the talking so no one punches Sherlock.

For Moriarity, I liked the movie version the best. He feels like he has his own stuff going on and Sherlock is just a nuisance. And they made him a capable boxer, plus I just like that bearded look. It makes him a more distinguished professor. BBC’s Moriarity is next. He’s creepy in the best villainous way. He feels like he turns into Sherlock’s personal nemesis. Rather than doing things for his own sake, he’s doing it to get to Sherlock. Elementary’s wasn’t on enough, really, but I enjoyed it when Moriarty was on.

I think, and don’t quote me on this, that Elementary’s Moriarity might be most similar to the original works in that Moriarity is not a huge part of Sherlock’s story. He’s just there for that one story and not everything relates to him. The world of Elementary goes on even without the threat or drive of Moriarity.

For Mycroft, I like BBC’s better, maybe because he’s pretty much a main character. Sherlock doesn’t appreciate him enough. He also feels really important and does things behind the shadow. It’s a toss up between the movie’s Mycroft and Elementary’s Mycroft. The movie version was the funnest of them all, and I just enjoyed him. And I liked the brothers not being outright antagonistic to each other. Elementary’s Mycroft was cool in that (and this is spoilers) they tricked us into thinking he’s just a restauranteur. Then bam. He’s just as smart as Sherlock and has been working with British intelligence so they wouldn’t take Sherlock instead.

Miss Hudson? BBC’s version is the only one that stands out, so that wins. Mary Watson? BBC version, of course! Lestrade/Elementary’s replacement, Gregson? Gregson. BBC Lestrade. Movie Lestrade. I like Gregson because Sherlock actually respects him unlike in the other two where Sherlock merely tolerates Lestrade as being not as bad as the rest.

Whew. This one got long. I’ll stop with the comparisons. I will end by saying I enjoy all three and am looking forward to the third Sherlock Holmes movie if it ever comes out.