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Superhero Movie (2008)
It's actually funny.
It's getting harder and harder to sit through these parodies. However, I really enjoyed this one. Sure, you'll find a lot of the same humor here that you'll find in the Scary Movies and other dumb genre spoofs. But this time, there's at least a solid story behind it rather than being entirely non-sequitur. There's not nearly as much gross-out gags in this one, and there are solid performances from Drake Bell, Christopher MacDonald and others. The superhero genre is ripe for parody, while action films, chick flicks, and slasher movies have all been done to death. The film's score isn't bad either, but to get right down to the point, it's nice to see a comedy film that can actually make you laugh
Come on, people. It wasn't that bad.
This was actually a very good episode. My only real complaint is that Marina Sirtis and Jonathan Frakes look a little too old for their characters at this point, but it was still enjoyable to watch. It was clever of them to put Riker in the place of Enterprise's unnamed chef, allowing him to interact with the crew. I have to agree that nobody liked seeing Trip die. Nobody likes when a beloved character gets killed off, but it happens. I feel the inclusion of Riker, Troi, and the TOS and TNG Enterprises was so that we could say goodbye not only to this series, but to television Star Trek as a whole. Who knows when we'll get to see another Star Trek show on TV? All in all, it was still a great episode, giving us one last chance to boldly go where nobody has gone before.
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles (2003)
Better than you might expect.
If sending the Turtles back in time (a la the third movie) was a bad idea, sending them to the future would also be a mistake, right? Wrong. Sure, the setting and supporting character's are like nothing that's been in the Ninja Turtles franchise before. But Leonardo, Donatello, Raphael, Michelangelo, and Master Splinter are still the characters we know and love. The series has actually done a good job showing the Turtles and Splinter adapt to their new surroundings, and provide sufficient development and likability to their new supporting cast. A few of the villains could use some sprucing up, but others are still pretty cool. And the less serious atmosphere in most episodes better reflects the mood of the original 1987 series, while still maintaining a bit of the feel from the episodes preceding this time warp. Bottom line: Don't underestimate "Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Fast Forward". It's an enjoyable follow-up to the 2003 series. We don't know how long the good times will last, so just stick around and see these Turtles go.
pretty good for such an early team-up
In Power Rangers Zeo, there was a 2-part episode titled Rangers Of Two Worlds. The episode featured the Zeo Rangers teaming up with the Alien Rangers to stop King Mondo and his machines. In my later years, as I discovered Sentai, I wondered what was cut out of the episode. It seemed that there wasn't too much left out, which led to a little bit of disappointment. Unlike its succeeding team-up movies, this one doesn't use the mecha from the previous series. Only the Ohranger mecha are seen. The movie plays like an episode of Ohranger, opening and closing as such with very little special treatment given. Kakuranger doesn't even show up until the second half of the movie. Strangely enough, they're the only ones who get a true henshin sequence in the movie. Still, it was cool seeing what was cut out and what was changed, specifically the nature of the odd pink monster. Still, for something that hadn't been attempted since Goranger vs. JAKQ in the early days of Sentai, this was pretty good. Check it out if you're a Sentai or a Power Rangers fan.
Eagle Riders (1996)
Am I the only one who remembers this show?
I used to watch G-Force on Cartoon Network and loved it. Unfortunately, it disappeared off of TV for some reason. One Sunday morning, I woke up fairly early and turned on the TV and there they are...with different villains, gear, vehicles, and names? I had not yet discovered Gatchaman or Battle Of The Planets, but I quickly learned that this was not the same show. In fact, even the source material wasn't Gatchaman. This was from the sequel shows, Gatchaman II and Gatchaman Fighter. I got up early every morning to watch it whenever I could, and enjoyed every minute of it. Sadly, we only saw 15 episodes of the 65 episode series... And we never even got into the Fighter storyline. This show is definitely one of Saban's forgotten triumphs that should be revived on Jetix (ABC Family/Toon Disney).
Batman & Robin (1997)
Indeed, of all Batman movies made in the late 20th century, this was the worst. Nipples on the costume can be overlooked, but it still kinda freaks you out that they're there (except on Batgirl, heh heh). Mr. Freeze looks cool, but is he really supposed to be so clunky? Uma Thurman overacted extremely as Poison Ivy. George Clooney was an equally bad Batman. People will complain that Bane is not simply supposed to be a mindless henchman, but I didn't think too much of it, despite the fact that I agree. I liked a couple things about the movie, though. Robin's costume was great, more closely resembling the modern Nightwing than Robin ever has. And the bit part for John Glover (Riddler from Batman TAS, Lionel Luthor from Smallville) was enjoyable.
The Batman vs. Dracula (2005)
Not since Batman Beyond: Return Of The Joker...
...has there been such a solid effort to bring the Batman mythos to life through cell-shaded animation. The entire film is a work of art with beautiful animation, excellent voice acting, and the kind of edge we'd expect from a vampire movie. There's a good display of Batman's character, specifically his vow to never kill. Not only does he try to cure Dracula's victims, but he also feels guilt when he was unable to save the Joker early on. Tara Strong is no stranger to the DC animated universe, and she once again displays perfection as Vicky Vale. I hope to see more of her in the series. WARNING: If this movie was rated, I'd put it in the same line with Return Of The Joker UNCUT with a PG-13 rating. Younger viewers may not handle so much blood, and Dracula and his victims are very scary when you first see them. Ages 13 and up, watch it. You may even start watching The Batman on a regular basis.
Bakuryû sentai Abaranger (2003)
Power Rangers DinoThunder uncensored
BakuRyuu Sentai Abaranger is a task force show which was made into Power Rangers DinoThunder. While PRDT was definitely good, Abaranger was incredibly different, and in many ways, better. In this version, "Dr. Oliver" is a lone warrior from an alternate Earth. "Conner" has an adorable niece and becomes more and more of a father to her as the series goes on. "Kira" is a little more girly and somewhat of a technical expert. "Ethan" is a chiropractor who has the attitude of a typical 6th ranger. "Trent" is a power hungry yet apathetic evil doctor and stays evil for a majority of the series, his Dino Morpher set to explode and destroy Tokyo. Things are much more hardcore and/or humorous in this version. (I actually saw Connor's Tyrano Staff EAT a Triptoid! TWICE!) The music is one of my favorite parts. The show begins with a theme that gets you psyched up for the episode and ends with a bouncy upbeat singalong. Elsa and Zeltrax are the same character, yet their rivalry with the Black Ranger remains. Also, the DinoZords can talk and have personalities of their own. If you liked Power Rangers DinoThunder, you'll love this one just as much, if not more. The featured team-ups, Hurricanger vs. Abaranger and Abaranger vs. Dekaranger, are far better than their PR versions with plots somehow unworthy of Disney programming. Bottom line: This is a great Sentai series and should satisfy fans of PR and Sentai alike.
Voltron: Fleet of Doom (1986)
Interesting blend of Vehicle and Lion
Until watching this, I had never even seen a bit of Vehicle Voltron. Still, it was a crossover I wanted to see. The footage seems mostly from the Lion Voltron, so I was satisfied there. Unfortunately, you don't see much of Voltron until the last 20 minutes or so, but the action is all good. The blending of the Vehicle and Lion characters is done pretty well, with actually a few shots of both Voltrons and teams in the same place. All of the classic Voltron cast return as their specific characters. However, the only characters really given a lot of screen time are Keith and Allura. It's anyone's guess if those two really are an item. I still liked it as a guy who grew up watching Voltron whenever he could and when it comes to action, I was satisfied with what I saw. Check this out if you're a Voltron fan. Repeat viewings if you feel like it.
A great Lupin III special
Like The Fuma Consipracy (I haven't seen that one), this special centers more around Lupin's samurai partner, Goemon. A Chinese mob boss challenges Lupin III and co. to retrieve a dragon figurine from the bottom of the ocean inside the Titanic. The fact that Arsene Lupin is enough of incentive for Lupin to go get it, but without the mob boss' backing. His adversaries include Chin Chin Chou (the mob boss), the ever persistent Inspector Zenigata, and even Goemon and his long lost childhood friend. There is plenty of action and humor which you come to expect from the franchise. Now for the dubbing: Sonny Strait does a good job as Lupin, despite the fact that it's pronounced "Loo-pin" (The appropriate pronunciation, "Lu-pahn", couldn't be used because of issues with Maurice Leblanc). Christopher Sabat supplies his typical gruff "Piccolo" voice as Jigen, perhaps the closest one to resemble the TMS dubbers. Everybody else does a good job. All in all, definitely a worthwhile outing from Lupin the 3rd.