Tuesday, June 27, 2017

'Resident Evil: Vendetta' Relies on Exciting Action to Save an Otherwise Cliched Zombie Plot

The Resident Evil live-action movies range from passable to terrible (though I admit that I was entertained by the first four movies when I first watched them).  The direct-to-video animated movies, on the other hand, are sensibly enjoyable for what they are.  It’s probably because, unlike the Milla Jovovich movies, they are set within the games’ universe.

Now, I’m not really a big fan of the franchise, and I only played some of the earlier games a few times.  But I’ve gotten familiar and somewhat fond of its most popular characters – namely Leon S. Kennedy, Jill Valentine, Albert Wesker, Chris Redfield, Claire Redfield, and Ada Wong (seeing them interact with Alice is one of the few things I liked about the live-action movies) – because, though I don’t play modern video game consoles, I do watch plenty of video game cutscene compilations and gameplays in Youtube.  Hence, because they feature the games’ characters and the narrative is tied up with the games’ continuity, I appreciate the animated movies more.

The third and latest one, which is released this year, could be my favorite of the three so far.

Monday, June 26, 2017

'My Life as a Zucchini' Further Increases the Tally of Stop-Motion Movie Masterpieces

My Life as a Zucchini – alternatively titled as My Life as a Courgette; also Ma vie de Courgette, per its original, native language – is a French stop-motion animated film based on the novel Autobiographie d'une Courgette.  It’s about a nine-year-old boy named Icare who gets sent to a children’s home after accidentally killing his abusive, alcoholic mother.  He prefers to be called “Zucchini”, as it’s what his mother calls him, and keeps a beer can and a kite as mementos of his parents.  In the children’s home, he becomes friends with other abandoned children who have their own particular quirks and tragic backstories.

Sunday, June 25, 2017

'Blame!' Is Brilliant!

This latest anime film I’ve watched, Blame!, has been an exceptional  experience for me.  I think it’s the first CGI, non-video-game-adaptation feature-length anime film I’ve ever seen.  And I surprisingly found it to be as visually pleasing as if it had hand-drawn aesthetics.  On top of that, it’s genuinely one of the greatest science fiction works I’ve ever encountered, thanks to its brilliant premise/setting and appealing main protagonist.

Photo Biography Update (06-25-17)

Some notable photos taken during the period of January 12 to June 25, 2017...

Wednesday, June 21, 2017

How Is My 2017 TV Watching So Far

Once again, for the 4th straight time, I made a mid-year list of what TV shows I’ve watched and been watching so far, arranged from best to worst, per my personal taste…

Rick and Morty
Technically, the season 3 premier has been the only Rick and Morty episode out this year.  But since it was only this year that I got to watch this series, I will be considering the weight of its entirety (which includes seasons one and two).  Hence, it’s the best TV I’ve watched this year so far.  CLICK HERE for more of my thoughts on it.

Doctor Who Season 10
Excited to know who would be the next Doctor.  But for now, I’m relishing Peter Capaldi’s final season.  The first six episodes are among the best Twelfth Doctor episodes ever.  It started getting a bit hackneyed by episode seven though.

Tuesday, June 20, 2017

'American Gods' Is a Solid TV Adaptation of Neil Gaiman's Brilliant Fantasy Novel

In American Gods, the gods of mythology and ancient civilizations had come to and settled in America via the immigrants that believed in them.  However, in the present, since they are no longer worshiped as much as in old times, or have been forgotten, these Old Gods have become weak.  Instead, embodiments of media, technology, and globalization are the New Gods that dominate modern-day America.  A con artist named Mr. Wednesday (Ian McShane), who used to be a very powerful Old God, aims to regain the glory of his kind by rallying them against the New Gods.  And caught between this looming war between Old and New Gods are ex-con Shadow Moon (Ricky Whittle), whom Wednesday hired as his bodyguard, and his recently deceased wife Laura (Emily Browning), who has been inadvertently reanimated by the lucky golden coin of the leprechaun Mad Sweeney (Pablo Shreiber).

Sunday, June 18, 2017

'Lucid Dream' Works as a Mystery Thriller, Fails as Science Fiction

Lucid Dream is a South Korean science fiction mystery thriller film about a journalist named Dae-ho (Go Soo) who turns to his psychiatrist friend So-hyun (Kang Hye-jung) and her lucid dreaming technology in order to access his subconscious memory of his son’s abduction three years ago.  With the help of Bang-seop (Sol Kyung-gu), the police detective assigned to the case who vowed to find his son, and Seong-pil (Park In-hwan), a grizzled private investigator, Dae-ho begins to track down the kidnappers from the clues he obtains from his lucid dream of the event, bringing him closer to finding out what happened to his son and who is ultimately behind his abduction.

Saturday, June 17, 2017

Top 10 Moments of the 2017 NBA Finals

My other favorite moments of the 2016-2017 NBA season:
My Finals recaps:

The 2017 NBA Finals certainly didn’t lack unforgettable moments.  But, just like before, I only have room for ten of them.

10.) The Dubs Winning the Championship
Let’s get the most obvious one out of the way: the moment the Warriors became champions again.

Friday, June 16, 2017

Holy Mackerel, the Ludicrous Mayweather-McGregor Fight Is Actually Happening!

For a long time, semi-retired boxing legend Floyd “Money” Mayweather, Jr. and MMA star Connor “The Notorious” McGregor have engaged in upping each other’s arrogance and jawing – each claiming that the he could easily beat up the other.  As early as last year, there has been buzz that a crossover fight was under negotiations.  But I really thought that such a match wouldn’t come into fruition because, seriously, the idea is simply ridiculous.  Thus, I’m genuinely stunned that it actually pushed through, scheduled on August 26 at Las Vegas.  I guess nothing is too dumb and absurd when huge piles of money are involved.

Wednesday, June 14, 2017

Monday, June 12, 2017

'A Dark Song' Engrosses, as It Takes Things Slow

Usually in movies, when a magical or occult ritual (or the like) is required to be performed, it’s just done through a quick sequence or montage.  In the Irish indie film A Dark Song, the ritual’s the entire movie.  (The next paragraph is my attempt of a non-spoiler synopsis, but I think the movie will turn out being more enjoyable if one has zero knowledge of the character motivations and clues of its reveals, so it’s fine if you skip reading that.)

Top 10 Moments of the 2017 NBA Playoffs

As I mentioned in my list for notable regular season moments, I originally intended to make a list for playoffs moments once the playoffs ends – that means after the Finals.  But since a lot of fun stuff has been going on the Finals, I think its notable moments deserve a list of their own.  Hence, this “notable playoffs moments” list just covers the first three rounds of the 2017 NBA playoffs.

10.) When John Wall Hit a Gutsy Gamewinning 3-pointer, Forcing Game 7 in the East Semis
John Wall only shot 9-of-25 that game, but he was able to nail the shot that mattered most.  Down by two and facing elimination, Wall received the ball for the Wizards’ last possession.  With Avery Bradley – probably the Celtics’ best defender – on him, Wall hit a trey with 3.5 seconds remaining, which turned out being the gamewinner.

Sunday, June 11, 2017

'The Belko Experiment' Is Decently Interesting and Thrilling, but It Doesn't Live Up to Its Potential

The Belko Experiment has this intriguing setup: 80 Belko Industries employees go to work in a remote company building in Bogota, Columbia, thinking it’s just going to be another ordinary day at the office.  Suddenly, steel shutters envelop the building, trapping them inside, and a voice in the intercom forces them to participate in a kill-or-be-killed, survival-of-the-fittest game.   If instructions aren’t met, they are going to be remotely killed – as each employee apparently had a nano-bomb implanted at the base of his or her skull when he or she was hired under the pretense that it’s supposed to be a tracking device in case he or she was kidnapped.  So alliances are made, friends become enemies, and chaos and slaughter ensues.

Saturday, June 10, 2017

The Cavs Are a Team With Nothing to Lose, and They Played as Such in Game 4

After earning a 3-0 lead in impressive fashion going into Game 4, the question is no longer whether the Warriors will win the championship or not, but when will they win it.  Regardless of the result of the game, nothing would really change – the Golden State Warriors are going to be the 2016-2017 champions.  Hence, the Cavaliers had nothing to lose in Game 4.  Might as well go supernova in the first quarter without concerning themselves about reserving energy for the home stretch.  And their attitude paid off.  They scored a Finals-record 49 points in the first quarter – resulting into 86 at the half, another Finals record.  The resulting lead was insurmountable enough for the Dubs to catch up to.

Friday, June 09, 2017

For the Cavs, Game 3 Was Game Over

For the first time this Finals, the Golden State Warriors didn’t rout the Cleveland Cavaliers.  But they still got the Game 3 win though.  Up 3-0, it’s now all but certain that they are going to win their second championship in three years.