Friday, December 31, 2010

Friday, December 24, 2010

WoW: Wrong.

Yes I'm levelling a Worgen.

Yes, it's a caster. A Priest in fact.

Yes, it definitely needs a new piece of chest "armour", if that's what you call cloth caster robes.


Friday, December 17, 2010

RftP: Tron: Legacy

Tron: Legacy is a sequel to Tron, the first of the two seminal early 80's movies with CGI Elements; the other being the far more cheesy, fun, and memorable The Last Starfighter. I'm not going to go back and watch the original movie for the purposes of this - so you'll be spared a list of all the "nods" you're "supposed" to go see this movie for - but I will recount that I recall renting it when I was.... oh... 15 or so and found myself bored by it.

While the new movie should do a better job of holding people's attention, it still suffers from a certain amount of pacing problems in the middle/last two acts much like the first film and can be a nasty violator of the "show, don't tell" anti-cocktease philosophy I tend to endorse around here in that we just don't get enough of the elements people are likely paying to see; light-cycle battles and disk fights are short and simply not intense enough. There's one time where they hide a fight entirely to try and play off someone's reaction to the sounds of it that runs too long and ends up failing to be as effective as they'd like. Part of me wonders if they were too worried about getting "too Matrix-y" and not worried enough about bringing the kick-splode.

Otherwise definitely pretty in spots - although set almost entirely against the "dark" in that way Cheap CGI fights tend to occur at night in low budget films - and sounds good, but story wise its brutally straight forward in its implementation of the son seeking lost father plot arc. Although, there are some false trails initially set up implying "villains" that either don't exist or won't be explored until someone gets around to making a sequel, if ever.

Overall, it's a decent spend of money for the holidays if you're looking to have a bit of Sci-Fi.

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Monday, December 6, 2010

Link Storage: RftP Footnote

It's articles like Johanna Schneller's "Hollywood Actresses and the art of Strategic Nudity" over at The Globe and Mail that help form the basis for the shots I take about how young actresses frequently break their "kit" out to score "adult" or "hot" points in Hollywood.

Sunday, December 5, 2010

TotD: Only in Canada...

... would you find a "Rim Rolling Tool" at checkout.

Friday, December 3, 2010

RftP: Black Swan

Darren Aronofsky's latest film is hard to describe without spoiling things but heeeeeerreee weeeeee goooooooo....


Let's just say it's worth at least one viewing and leave it at that because all you really need to know is that it's a job well done. But, wait a week until it opens wide in Toronto 'cause Varsity is one of the last of the "watch the movie through the back of someone's head" theatres left.

WoW: A Fishing Daily That Ducked the "Bad Quest" Executions...

... would be called Big Gulp

Why? Because its a reminder of the worst style of WoW quest: the double random drop. In order to complete this daily you need to catch Royal Monkfish, which float around 50% per catch based on my casts. Then, you need to gut these random catches for the necklace.... which is not a 50% drop and likely closer to 10-20%. Which means it can be quick... or really slow to get done...

So, it's not remotely hard but definitely can be an annoyingly frustrating little time sink which is oddly out of place compared to all the other dailies they've put together for cooking and fishing so far.

Bad Quest Designer! Bad!

Thursday, December 2, 2010

RftP: Tangled, Faster

Catching up on two films from the weekend, Tangled is apparently Disney's 50th animated film and, basically, a prototypical Disney flic.

Adding Rapunzel to the lineup of "Disney Princesses", Tangled is a loose adaption of the original Grim Bothers tale that shifts a lot of the elements around to service Disney's need to be both "family friendly" and "empowering" as they say in zee focus groups. Functionally this still results in a good film but also is a piss poor retelling of the tale; not that the later's ever been the primary goal out of this crew anyways.

Apparently the most expensive animated film ever made (to this point), and the second most expensive production of all time, you kinda get the idea that most of that was in startup costs for the Disney CGI Division because it doesn't really set itself apart from any of its predecessors in terms of graphical "wow-ness" though is certainly pretty enough in that regard. Story wise its pretty much what you've come to expect from Disney love stories lately (initially cold leads warm to each other over the course of a few days of forced/orchestrated co-habitation), and the songs and comedy are decent enough to make it reasonably fun.

As such, if you're in the mood for an animated flic it's not a waste of money. The only sad part is that the ~49 million opening weekend for this vs the ~24 million for last years Princess and the Frog likely further drives in the spike that says traditional animation is done with consumers; which is a bit of a shame when we could see the medium go away because of failures elsewhere.

Moving on, Faster throws Dwayne Johnson at us in the "Revenge Killer" role while slipping in homages to The Good, The Bad, and the Ugly intermittently. This film suffers from a meandering storyline that does at least manage to come together reasonably well in the final act. But, it's all the deviations on the trip that serve to kill the pace and see to it that the movie doesn't live up to its title. Its simply doesn't embrace it's theme as well as, say, Crank or Shoot 'em Up, nor manages to be interesting enough to be, say, Heat or The Town let alone something like Inception.

Existing in that middle ground of action flics where its not bad enough to dismiss outright but also not good enough to make it worth running out to see, probably it's greatest failing is in giving Johnson little to do but look resolute and one shot people as he wanders through the film as some amalgam of The Terminator and a horror movie killer's ability to ghost in and out of situations. While he's not going to be working Stratford next season, he has shown himself to have a broader toolset than that in the past.

For most people, this is gonna be a catch it on video kinda film.