Highlighting interviewees, guest posters, my standard weekly posts, and whatever else I can think of, going into the next week.
All October I’ll be contributing to the 31 Days blog challenge. It may or not interfere with my regularly scheduled posts.
So, here what’s happening next week:
Sunday | Sample Sunday: EC: Giovanni’s Angel
Monday | Columbus Day observed followed by Top 5- D.C. Heroes. Over on You Tube I’ll post ToiBox Movie Reviews.
Tuesday | Character Files: Lilly’s opinion of the Eternal Curse.
Wednesday | A Post from the Past: Significance of places.
Thursday | Tea and Conversation: Journals.
Friday | Friday Forecast followed by a review of Mr. Churchill’s Secretary.
Saturday |Weekly Recap.
Later today | I’m writing and working to clean up a manuscript 🙂
Tomorrow |I’m posting an episode of Vinyl on My Mind on my You Tube channel.
Unbreakable Review – Mock Squid Soup #3
This review will consist of me asking myself 10 questions and answering them to the best of my ability.
1. What is this film about?
In case you didn’t know, I’m a geek and proud. As geeks go, we are a passionate bunch. Very rarely are we indifferent about geek related matters; we either love something or hate it. As far as this film goes, it seems that on a large scale many people I know hate this movie (although it did very well at the box office), but I love it. It has, now at least, developed quite a cult following. I personally think people just weren’t ready for it yet, and also feel that much of the current success of Marvel and D.C. films now have, began with seeds planted by of this film.
In this story of what comic books might really be in a world where people love their fantasy and fiction, only because they truly believe it’s not real, security guard David Dun starts to learn that he well above average and seeks the knowledge of, Comic/Graphic Art collector, Elijah Price for guidance.
2. What did I think of the title, poster, and or trailer?
I’m going to go ahead and let you know that I will be geeking out throughout this review. For this review, I decided to go the extra mile. I went back and watched the original trailer for this movie and tried to remember what about it made me really want to see this film the first time around.
As movie trailers go, most of them irritate me. They either give too much away, are filled with shock value, are too long, and or completely mislead you. This trailer doesn’t do that. This trailer is probably one of the last few I watch for a movie I’d heard of and was interested in seeing. Today, I don’t watch movie trailers for movies I’m anxious to see and have been thoroughly appreciating my movie going experience because of it.
This trailer, however, was just what I needed at the time this film came out. It wasn’t too long and there wasn’t a whole lot of shock value. There was plenty of intensity and mystery to draw you in, but the whole movie, or all the high points, weren’t given away. I like that fact that Samuel L. Jackson’s character is clearly depicted at being a major role, but not much as is explained about him.
When I saw this trailer, I remember thinking, “This is going to be a cool movie about a real-life superhuman. I hope people don’t write it off as comic bookish.” At the time I really didn’t know this film was about comic books; nothing indicated it in the trailer and other marketing. Now, I’m so glad that I was both right and wrong about this. I think this film helped change some people’s minds about comic books and I’m glad.
3. What did I think of the main character(s) and how the actors performed them?
I thought Bruce Willis was more believable as a superhuman in this film than any smart-a** cop from the Die Hard series, and that’s saying a lot because I actually like the Die Hard series, minus the last one. David Dunn is an average Joe in every sense of the term; he may even be a bit below average, and yet, he has something special within him that makes him above average and just right for the role of hero.
David Dunn is unlike most superheroes for three main reasons.
A. Unlike Superman, David isn’t born knowing he’s different and doesn’t have to pretend to be normal. For him, his greatest struggle will be learning how to be a hero and keep his normality.
B. Unlike Batman, David isn’t trying to fulfill a void, to right a wrong, or seek vengeance/justice. He just likes helping people and he doesn’t even know why. It’s just something within him.
C. Unlike, say Spider-man, but more like say a Mutant, David is born with his abilities but they remain dormant until he’s ready to test them and use them. Unlike the Mutants, he doesn’t have a chance to accept the reality of his abilities in his youth or while going through puberty; it all hits him at middle age. All in all, David Dun is more of Luke Cage “Powerman” type character. He can’t fly or control elements, but can blend in seamlessly into average human society, which is both a blessing and a curse.
I don’t think Dunn’s alter ego is ever given a name, but I think it should be “Security” and like many other heroes, his “green” work poncho will serve as his cape… Now here’s where I geek out and sum up this hero. “Security, the green light of hope through the darkness.”
Samuel L. Jackson was wonderful as both friend and foe, believer and skeptic, mentor and archenemy. Sam Jackson isn’t known for playing vulnerable roles. Even in his portrayal of grief-stricken and angered father in A Time to Kill, Sam exudes a level of pride in his character that shows strength. Elijah Price, however, is a new twist to the pride that exudes from this man’s talent. This character is smart and witty, but desperate and vulnerable in a scary way. Before you even understand what exactly Elijah’s role is in the scheme of things, you get a sense that something is just not right about him. Too much of his life’s hope is wrapped up in David being “the one” he’s been seeking.
Mr. Glass reminds of other passionate and misunderstood dark characters, who under the right circumstances could be good guys, but there’s just too much pain and desperation in their lives to make it so. I think of Mr. Freeze, the version where all he wants to do is save his wife and turns himself into “a monster” so he can preserve himself and work to save them both. I like that Mr. Glass wears black and purple; it’s bold and noble, but can also be menacing. Oh, and his glass cane is awesome.
Young, Spencer Treat Clark, does a phenomenal job playing the role of troubled-child coping with the break-up of his parents while rediscovering his father as the hero all young boys think their dads to be.
4. What did I think of the direction and cinematography?
It seems like the whole movie was shot in a weird kind of sepia tone that alternated between: green, purple, and sometimes gray scale. There were little splashes of brightness and color from time to time to highlight certain things; I liked that effect.
The director seemed to use a lot of long angles in short spaces and vice versa. It could be wrong, but it seems to give the appearance of paneling sometimes. Unlike the 2003 Hulk film, which actually used rectangular panels in scenes (in case you didn’t know you were watching a comic book movie) these angles feel more natural.
In one scene it seems as though the camera is focusing on the character ear and whole scene seems to be in a box and in another a faceless teacher tells David the story of the drowning boy, and the close up feels like a comic panel zooming it…But I could just be over-thinking things.
5. What did I think of the soundtrack and score?
This movie didn’t have a soundtrack, but the score is difficult to describe. For me, a fan who’s watched the film several times, it’s very distinguishable. I know when I’m hearing music from this movie, but I have trouble finding words to describe it. It’s almost sad, but not. It sounds like silence, but again I realize that doesn’t make sense, so let’s just say that the score is original and makes an impact. Now, what that impact is may be a little unclear.
6. What did I like about the story as a whole?
As a whole, I loved this story. I mean, I really liked it to the point where I actually argue with people over it. Whenever someone tells me they didn’t get it, I want to slap them, then hug them, tell them it’s going to be okay, and then watch the film with them while offering my scene by scene commentary.
I love the fact that Elijah’s gallery is called Limited Edition and the first comic book he received was a limited edition of an “Active Comics” not to be confused with “Action Comics” 😉
7. What did I not like about the story?
Here’s where the geek in me gets angry, but it’s all in love for the art…I will try to keep it brief.
First, how is David Dunn able to fake an injury that keeps him from playing football without anyone asking any questions? It seems to me that a parent, a coach, heck even a fan might want to know the details of why this star athlete is no longer playing football “due to an injury.” Shouldn’t there have been some x-rays or something?
In Shyamalan’s cameo, David is using his clairvoyance to see if anything is wrong at the stadium. He gets a clear image of a man in a red and blue jacket smuggling drugs, but when he confronts the man, his jacket is different and there are no drugs. I want to know why. Is Shyamalan messing with his audience? Was there part of a scene removed and I need to check the special features of the DVD? What happened in that scene that went wrong?
I wonder who did it first, Shayamalan or Stan Lee? Stan Lee has always done cameos in his comic books and in TV programming, but I wonder when he did his first big screen cameo.
The last thing I will say, because I’m starting to become flooded with new things to questions, is about David’s ability to be a good hero. Once it’s established just what exactly are David’s strengths and weaknesses, it would have been nice to see him at least start an improvement plan, even though I’m sure that would have dragged the movie. However, it was irritating to see David use his ability to take a hit as a means to wait out his foe. David needs to learn how to fight, strategize, and swim.
8. Would I recommend this movie to others?
I would most definitely recommend this movie and do quite a bit.
9. If yes, who? What would I rate this movie?
I think this is a movie for the whole family, but there are some intense themes and scenes. Really young children may not get it or be able to keep up with its slow and suspenseful pace.
On a scale of 1 to 5 movie reels, I give this film 5 reels.
10. Was there anything in this movie that could be related to me or anything I have written?
There’s a motif in the comic industry that’s been popularized in TV and film as of late, the birth of a hero at the hand of their greatest villain. In Batman 1989, Batman is created by Jack Napier when he kills young Bruce’s parents only to become The Joker at the hand of Batman later.
In my story Eternal Curse, readers see a similar dynamic between the characters of Giovanni, Bletsian, and Marcos, but I won’t go on about that. Obviously, I’ve been heavily influenced by things I’ve read and seen in the area of superheroes and comic books.
Watch, rent, or buy this movie here.
Mock Squid Soup – Film Society
MOCK! and The Armchair Squid are proud to introduce Mock Squid Soup: A Film Society. Each month, on the second Friday, we shall host a bloghop devoted to a particular movie. We invite others to watch the same film and post their own reviews…Don’t be shy; come join the fun! 😀
Thank you for taking the time to read this post. If you like it let me know and share it with others. See you next time, Toi Thomas. #thetoiboxofwords