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Q. she's cute enough without it and a mouth would make the whole face off balance, causing Hello Kitty to be unable to smell or see out of one eye...the HORROR! or MAYBE her 'nose' is her 'mouth' and so in all reality she doesnt have a 'nose' or maybe her 'nose' and 'mouth' are one in the same!!!! confusing? I think so
A. Hello Kitty has no nose, but she must sneeze. That is why her head is so big. Hello Kitty has no nose, but she always stops to smell the flowers. Hello Kitty has no nose, which is why she doesn't wear glasses. Hello Kitty has no nose, but she buys Kleenex(TM) in bulk. Hello Kitty has no nose, so where has all the porridge gone? Hello Kitty has no nose, but she knows the sweet smell of victory.
Q. "Hello Kitty has no nose? How does she smell?"
Past signatures - not including special promotions :
"That'll put marzipan in your pie plate, Bingo!"
"No power in the 'verse can stop me"
"You know, finger prints are just like snow flakes - they're both very pretty." [-Chief Wiggum]
'Why are frogs called "frogs?"' - Chemzcool (on how to annoy a biology teacher)
"Those are the biggest squirrels I've ever seen" - G. (about raccoons)
"'It was the best of times, it was the blurst of times'? You stupid monkey!"
-You can't just buy superpowers.
-Oh yeah? Tell that to Batman.
gasp...this lesbian bar doesn't have a fire exit!
To those in the film industry, don't forget:
Respect screenwriters. Without them, producers would have nothing to produce, directors would have nothing to direct, and actors would have nothing to act.
One of my all-time favourites
"Inuyasha" follows Kagome, a modern Tokyo teenager who accidentally discovers a time portal to Japan's feudal era. Besides warring clans, she encounters magic and demons, including the half-demon Inuyasha of the title.
I discovered this show in my local TV listing. There was no summary or description but it was on YTV and had a Japanese title so I wondered if it were a new anime series. I went and checked YTV's website and saw one picture, a group shot of the main characters. I looked at it and said, "I will love this show" - I was right.
I don't think there's one aspect of the series that I don't like. I love Inuyasha's insensitivity and when he pretends not to care when he really does. I enjoy Kagome's boldness in the face of danger, while still keeping her modern teenage awkwardness. Miroku, a monk with a weakness for attractive women, whose "wind tunnel" (a void in his hand that sucks in anything nearby) is a powerful weapon that may some day kill him. Sango, a skilled female demon hunter with Kilala, her cat-like companion who, when needed, can grow to a sabre-toothed cat larger than a horse, breathe fire and run on air with flaming paws (if that doesn't sound interesting to you, you might have come to the wrong place!). I even like Shippo, the goofy little fox demon.
The villains have depth as well, Naraku seems only to want power but he may have other things on his mind. Sesshomaru (Inuyasha's half-brother) is one of the more suave villains I've come across. Seemingly ruthless, he's really quite honourable, with a well-hidden soft side.
I love the frequent humour, like Kagome's family making up various diseases and afflictions to explain her absence from school, Inuyasha and Kagome's fiery friendship, and Shippo's smart-aleck remarks. The music is excellent and I like the English-language voice actors. Some of the actors, newer to anime, sometimes pronounce names wrong (but it's not too bad) while anime veterans like Kirby Morrow and Kelly Sheridan do a better job. The only voice I was unsure of was Jillian Michaels as Shippo but I got over that quickly. I now love the way Shippo says "Kagome", "Inuyasha" and especially "Kilala".
If you're a fan of animation, fantasy, action-adventure and humour, you may want to give it a try.
Mean Machine (2001)
Not a bad football/soccer and prison film
Based on the 1974 American movie, The Longest Yard, Mean Machine is about an ex-pro footballer/soccer player who is sent to prison. Hated at first, he gains friends when he begins to coach an all-convict soccer team against the prison guards' already-established team.
I haven't seen the original so I can't compare them but I found Mean Machine pretty enjoyable. Vinnie Jones does a good job as Danny Meehan and it's nice to see him in a role where he's not the scary one. I liked the subtle humour as well, from Massive's ironic name to the unpredictable Monk (the crazy "Scot even the Scots are afraid of" - convincingly played by Jason Statham) to the pair of commentators, Bob and Bob at the final match.
The DVD I saw included audio tracks for both the original UK theatrical release and the "domestic" (i.e. American) release. After watching the original, I learned that the American had a few words re-dubbed to make the language easier to understand for these audiences. I then watched the second version and didn't find much of a difference between the two. There were some things that the character Nitro said that were noticeably re-dubbed (which didn't help much considering the way he shouts!) and a few slang terms were changed to more international expressions. I think some reviewers of this film may have been unaware of this and so complained about the more obvious dubbing.
The only one I actually found helpful was when a character says he's in prison "for [an abbreviation]." I didn't catch what he said and the American version replaced the letters with "assault and battery." I found one change a bit puzzling though: Mr. Sykes gives the governor of the prison tips for horse racing, writing letters next to his choices on a newspaper. After losing money on a false winner ("W"), Sykes explains to the governor that "it got smudged in the rain. It says EW: either way." This was changed to "EW: to place." I thought the original was quite clear and the new one no longer matches the letters.
Overall, it's not a bad film. I liked it enough to watch it twice and if you like football/soccer and prison films, there aren't many that combine the two to choose from.
My Family (2000)
"My Family" follows the day-to-day foibles of the Harpers, a British family of five. There's Ben (Robert Lindsay), the dentist who seems to loathe his life and family. Susan (Zoë Wanamaker), his tour-guide wife who prides herself on her open mind and is an awful cook but doesn't let it hinder her culinary style. Janey (Daniela Denby-Ashe) is the fashion magazine-reading, self-admittedly shallow teenaged daughter. (In season 4, Janey goes to college and is replaced by the vacuous Abi (Siobhan Hayes), Ben's cousin's daughter, for just as much fun). Michael (Gabriel Thomson) is the youngest son, who seems to be the brightest of the bunch. All of them are funny but the character who really shines, is the oldest son, Nick (Kris Marshall). Every scene with Nick is comic genius; from his quest to make money through various schemes and an assortment of jobs to his seeming inability to be troubled by anything.
The writing is good, with a variety of entertaining stories. I'm watching re-runs so there are many I have yet to see but I've found every episode that I have seen amusing. The actors are well-suited to their roles and all do a fantastic job. There are a few running gags as well, including Nick's quest for the perfect job, as mentioned, and some Harry Potter references that have popped up since Zoë Wanamaker appeared in the first Potter film. Since I've mentioned it, I might add that under other circumstances, Gabriel Thomson could easily have played Harry himself.
I'd highly recommend checking it out if you can. The show's episodic enough that one can start watching at any point.
Pieces of April (2003)
Charming, surprising, and at times, quite funny
The first chance I had to see Pieces of April, I passed. Knowing what it was about, I expected it to be depressing. I'm now so glad I didn't keep that attitude! I found it charming and very entertaining. Some would-be depressing scenes turned into relaxing comic relief, without seeming too contrived. I think not since American Beauty have I laughed so much at the humour in a dramatic film.
I liked the parallel stories of April's troubles in preparing her first Thanksgiving meal and that of her family's odd trip to see her. Also, (unlike Roger Ebert) I found the sub-plot about April's boyfriend, Bobby, entertaining (the mysterious Tyrone), character developing (shows how much he cares for April), and necessary to the main plot (the Burns family's first sight of him when they arrive).
The movie was shot in digital video for about $200,000 (a low figure for commercially released films) but there isn't much sign of either of those. I didn't notice much of a difference in picture compared to movies shot on film (although I saw it on DVD, not in a theatre) and the simplicity of the story doesn't require a large budget.
I'd greatly recommend Pieces of April and look forward to Peter Hedges' next film. At about an hour and a quarter, it doesn't take much time commitment to watch and you might be surprised.
Smart, action-packed, and a lot of the time, pretty hilarious!
ReBoot takes place in the city of Mainframe, representing the inside of a computer. The characters' speech reflects this with words and expressions like: random (crazy), basic (stupid), deleted or nullified (killed), and there was a time Enzo realized he should've "copied and pasted the truth"! Characters include binomes (citizens shaped like numbers, usually 1s and 0s), sprites (more human-like) and viruses (usually villains).
It features many inside jokes and references from Indiana Jones to Sailor Moon. In one episode, after the disappearance of several people, Fax Modem and Data Nully come to investigate (Fox Mulder and Dana Scully from The X-Files. Gillian Anderson actually voiced the latter). There is also a brief scene of Modem deciding between postcards for Los Angeles and Vancouver, mirroring David Duchovny's involvement in moving X-Files production from Vancouver to L.A. (ReBoot is produced by Vancouver's Mainframe Entertainment). Another local reference was a truck with "Two Small Sprites with Big CPUs" printed on the side. I'm told there is a local Vancouver moving company called "Two Small Men with Big Hearts".
An important part of the show is the games, which appear as cubes dropped from above by "the user". If characters enter these games to play against the user, losing means deletion for them and damage for the city. Genres in the games reflect the wide range of real-life video games and spoof everything from Mad Max to Evil Dead ("Malicious Corpses") to Austin Powers!
I particularly enjoyed the references to "BS'nP" that showed up a few times. This is a facetious acronym for ABC's "Broadcast Standards & Practices". Examples include Enzo firing a rocket launcher only to find it fires an inflatable raft with "BSnP approved" stamped on the side; and the Small Town Binomes (Village People) performing "Living with BSnP" ("It's fun to play in the non-violent way!"). Originally seen on ABC and YTV, it was cancelled by the former after the 2nd season. YTV continued to air the show (still does as of this writing!) and, being free from ABC's BS&P censorship, ReBoot could now deal with more mature themes. This was an improvement in the eyes of many. Following a hiatus, the 3rd season also showed a dramatic change in the graphical quality (more detail, shadows, etc.), due to advances in technology.
Another long hiatus followed the 3rd season but ReBoot came back with two feature-length movies: Daemon Rising and My Two Bobs (or 8 new episodes). The second ended with a cliff-hanger so I'm hopeful we haven't seen the last of ReBoot.
Astro Boy tetsuwan atomu (2003)
Good update, unsure about English version
Having good memories of the Astroboy series that aired in the 80's, I was excited to hear about a remake. Overall I'd say the new crew has done a fine job. There are some changes in the story line (Astro working at a circus, getting his trademark red boots, etc) but these may be revealed later. It doesn't seem to have as clear allegories for racism and segregation either, but again, there is still time for this to show up. The show retains a similar look to the original Astroboy with great visuals. The music captures the style of the show very well.
I'm not too keen on some of the voices, though. I have only seen the English-language dub so I don't have the original Japanese for comparison, but I find Astro's voice to be somewhat out of place. Another character, Dr. Tenma, is a slender Asian man and has a voice that sounds like James Earl Jones! Those two aside, the other voices are pretty good. I also especially like that Astro's rockets still have the same sound as the 80's show!
As for editing, a real problem with anime aired in the United States, I can't give definite comment, having never seen the original Japanese series. I did notice that Astro was told he was based on a real boy without mentioning what happened to that boy (he was killed in a car accident before the series takes place). A couple characters' names have been changed as well, Dr. Ocha-no-mizu (whom I knew as Prof. Peabody, others, Dr. Elefun in the last series) is now called Dr. O'Shay. I'm not sure why. If they wanted to shorten it, they could've just called him "Dr. Ocha" ("tea" in Japanese). Astro's sister, Uran (Sarah, Astrogirl), is now called Zoran. Once again, I'm not sure why. Also note, it's now called "Astro Boy" (2 words) instead of Astroboy (1 word). Maybe to distinguish between the old and new series?
Another thing I've noticed is that at least some of the episodes are being aired out of order. E.g. Astro's first day of school after we'd already seen him there, his sister appearing with no explanation as to where she came from, only to vanish again until her proper introduction several weeks later. I've learned that this is the distributor's doing and not that of the network that airs the show. I wonder why companies do this. Do they think the viewers won't notice?
Overall, "Astro Boy" seems to be a decent update of the classic show. I look forward to the new movie (slated for 2005).
Well worth a second look
Being a Simpsons fan, I first tuned into Futurama because of their common creator, Matt Groening. I quickly discovered that Futurama was quite different from the Simpsons in comedy and story.
I found it intelligent and funny, at times emotional, with a unique cast of characters. Lot's of subtle jokes and references, things only more serious fans would get. One unique back-ground joke is the "Alien" languages that appear on signs and objects. These writings actually have meaning, such as "meat truck" written backwards on an ambulance. (there is an Alien decoder at the "Can't Get Enough Futurama" website, as well as others that reveal their meanings). The show featured excellent cell-shaded computer graphics (CG made to look like hand drawn animation) that blended seamlessly, just appearing to be very smooth traditional animation.
There were also many series-wide running gags and stories as well, something you don't often see in animation outside of anime. E.g. in the first Christmas episode, it's explained to the 20th-century character Fry, that "Christmas" is an ancient pronunciation and now everyone says "X-mas", like when he says "ask" instead of "aks." Every instance of these words in the series is pronounced the latter way (it would be annoying if it weren't so entertaining!). Another example: Nibbler's shadow can be quickly seen in the first episode (1000 years of show time before we meet this character), this wasn't explained or mentioned until many seasons later (and I won't give away its meaning here). I found that impressive, it showed Matt and the others had a grand plan for the series.
There are some theories as to why Futurama was cancelled, including the Fox Network's unhappiness over not owning the show. I don't know how much truth there is to that but ratings weren't helped by its time slot: Sunday at 7:00pm. Seasons also began late and ended early and episodes were frequently preempted for football (4 short production seasons were stretched over 5 years). It seems Fox did not put much stock in the show. The return of the cancelled series "Family Guy" (due to popularity of re-runs and DVD sales) gives hope that Futurama could be brought back as well. Fans will just have to continue to support the show and see. Update: Success for Futurama fans - four direct-to-DVD features (or a new 16-episode season) released between 2007 and 2009.
Samurai Jack (2001)
One of the things that sets Jack apart from other animated action series is its use of subtlety. Though full of scenes of intense action, there are also long stretches with no dialogue, using imagery to tell the story. The art direction is excellent. Some viewers find the characters have a strange graphic style but it works well in the context of the strange world where Jack finds himself.
I especially like the use of different sizes of wide-screen to aid in the story-telling. A full-frame scene will shift to different ratios of widescreen to emphasize images such as a great distance between two characters or to focus on one's eyes. The series also includes subtle humour (note again, subtlety), such as Jack dressing up as a teenager to infiltrate a rave party or accidentally being transformed into a chicken!
Phil LaMarr is excellent as usual as Jack and Mako is the perfect voice for Aku. Those who dismiss it as an anime rip-off should consider the difference between "rip-off" and "inspired by".
Very stylish series, overlooked unfortunately
Firefly is a very unique and entertaining series, full of action, suspense, ideas and the smart humour that can be expected from creator Joss Whedon (Buffy, Angel). At first glance, it seems to be a sort of western in space, but it's really much more than that.
They present a more pessimistic, and likely realistic view of the future compared to other series such as Star Trek. Everyone's second language is Chinese (Mandarin to be precise). There are Chinese characters written on signs and the ship speaks warnings in English and Chinese. The reason for this is the main authority, known as "The Alliance" is one of the United States and China, supposedly the last two superpowers left on Earth. One great thing about this is when people get upset they curse in Chinese. In one of the interviews on the DVD set, an actor said it was sometimes hard to remember but it was cool that they could call people things like "goat-licking s-o-b" without worrying about censorship! Besides the Chinese, they use interesting slang terms such as "shiny" (great or healthy), "the sky" or "the black" (space), and "the 'verse" (the universe).
There are clear allegories for the present as well. The inner planets (close to Earth) enjoy prosperity and advanced technology (like high-income nations of today) while planets on the "outer rim" have lower technology (like low-income nations).
The photography is interesting too: they use whip pans for exterior shots (where the camera whips from one thing to another) and fast zooms followed by re-focusing. It makes you feel like you're watching through the eyes of someone spying on the action. What's especially interesting about this is they do it for the space shots too which are of course all computer graphics. So they're using special effects to make it look like old-fashioned camera work! Importantly, during shots in space, there are no sound effects, because as we all know, there really is no sound in space. This realism increases the feeling of being there.
It really is a shame this series didn't last longer than it did. This is at least partly because Fox made little effort to promote or advertise it. I've noticed most people I mention it to have never heard of it. The series is now available on DVD with some nice extras and 3 episodes never aired by Fox. There is also a movie, 'Serenity' (2005) which reveals a few mysteries left from the show (though not all of them!).