Tag Archives: sci-fi

Review: Tomorrowland – Great, Big, Beautiful









Tomorrowland is about a place that only a select few are allowed to go to, Frank Walker (George Clooney) went and was kicked out, now Casey Newton (Britt Robertson) gets her chance to go there. In Tomorrowland, events affect our world and vice-versa, but as to the extent… that’s up to our main characters. The film is co-written and directed by Brad Bird.

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Review: Chappie – Johnny 5 for a new generation

Finally got around to seeing Chappie. After the critics panned it, and those great trailers, and the poor opening weekend, I waited and I waited, and waited…
Chappie is about a robotic police force in South Africa, but one of these robots gains sentience. Throw in a pair of rap/pop artists who play gangsters and Wolverine as the antagonist and that’s what you get.

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Review: Interstellar – to infinity and beyond!











Interstellar is Christopher Nolan’s latest film. It’s a science fiction adventure about a team of NASA astronauts who travel through a wormhole in search of an inhabitable planet, because Earth is dying.
Directed by Nolan, written by Nolan and Jonathan Nolan.

The good; I love the robots. As I’ve mentioned, it’s robot season. In the film there are two main robots, TARS and CASE, they’re reminiscent of the monoliths from 2001: A Space Odyssey, but they’re move-able with separating joints to make limbs and other shapes, it’s like a big shapes puzzle. The AI that makes these robots have a personality also reminds me of B.O.B. and V.I.N.C.E.N.T. from The Black Hole. I just love that the designs are practical versus form and elegance.

The portrayal of the worm hole was stunning. The visuals in this movie are amazing, you have to go see it on the big screen.

For an adventure movie there sure are a lot of emotional moments. The actors do a great job with these scenes.

The bad; the sound design was a little much in some areas, meaning that the score and the sound effects over powered the dialog. It was hard to hear at times.

For a science based movie, they used “love” as a factor. When the scientists have to make a choice of where to go next, one of them uses love to convince the others… that only hurt her argument. It felt out of place, perhaps a little more set up could’ve made that flow better?

There’s a “plot twist” in the second act, don’t want to say too much, but it felt a bit forced.

People are just dumb, it’s getting increasingly harder to watch a movie in a theatre and enjoy it. Here’s a line from one such “patron”… “I didn’t pay $15 to have a squeaky chair.” To which my reply was, “I didn’t pay $15 to have you fidgeting in your chair the whole movie.”

Overall, I had a good time, I don’t want to say too much about the plot for fear of spoiling it. After seeing the film it elicits conversations, and that’s good here.
The premise reminds me of The Black Hole, the robots remind me of 2001: A Space Odyssey, the music reminds me of Philip Glass, space travel and the video messaging is very much like Alien and Aliens, the special effects remind me of Tree of Life, the second act reminds me of Sunshine, the third act’s reveal reminds me of Gundamand so on… If you were to do a double feature, I would pair Interstellar with Big Hero 6, strictly for the visuals.



Doctor Who: The Day of The Doctor 50th anniversary











Doctor Who is the longest running sci fi show in history.  It first went on the air in November 23, 1963, a year before Star Trek hit the airwaves.

This year celebrates its 50th anniversary, and below are some videos of how that celebration will be… well, celebrated.

Not only will the special be broadcasted on television, but it’ll be in theatres and then released on DVD two weeks after.

We get to see the current Doctor, Smith, join forces with the fan favorite 10th Doctor, Tennant.  Fun will certainly be had by all.

I have a couple thoughts as to what this special will be about, but they might be spoilers.

Review: Elysium – where Matt Damon shoots things, not as Jason Bourne











Elysium made it’s way to number one at the box office this weekend, it was a close call.  The short of it… Earth is ravaged, the wealthy move off world and on to Elysium.  The poor working class dream of getting up to Elysium, while the privileged class there work on keeping them out.

The good; Neill Blomkamp’s new film after District 9 keeps in the sci-fi genre.  He’s again created a world in which the sci-fi genre is a social metaphor.

The film looks amazing, it’s shot beautifully, the special effects are top notch.  The world is populated with droids that do the law enforcing, to security detail, to medical assessment/aide, you name it they do it.  Limiting the human jobs to manufacture of these droids, keeping the poor… well, poor.
Insert Matt Damon, I really like this social commentary, Damon plays Max, the film’s protagonist, he’s an orphan who grew up with some nuns and fell in to the wrong crowd, he’s got a bad record and now working at a factor which makes the droids that keep him on parole.

Much like District 9, the action and violence is both graphic and well executed (pun intended).  Seeing a man eviscerated as he flees has never looked so good.

The bad; Jodie Foster’s in this movie, why?  She’s under utilized.  The pacing of the film is much faster than Blomkamp’s previous one, I don’t think that’s a good thing here.  We didn’t get enough time to live in this world that he’s created, it’s very well thought out and has a system of its own, I wanted more learning how this world works.
I wonder if the script could’ve benefited from another draft or two.

Overall I had fun, the ending is much happier than District 9, a little too happy actually.  And there are a lot of logic flaws that are usually reserved for horror movies and why characters are making these seemingly bad decisions.  The ending is basically in favor of universal health care.   Hopefully Blomkamp’s next team up with Copley will be more “on track.”

Review: Europa Report – no not how the euro is doing


The Europa Report is about a manned space mission to Europa, for those of you who don’t know, Europa is a moon of Jupiter.  These astronauts go there in hopes of finding life, in the form of bacteria and stuff, and not the little green men type.

The good; I love sci fi, and I love this hard sci fi stuff.  Europa Report reminds me of these other movies; Moon, Silent Running, Sunshine and 2001.  And to a certain extent Mission to Mars, everything before they actually get to Mars.  There’s something about man facing the elements, or lack of, in space.  Europa Report follows in that tradition.

The science fiction of this movie makes me believe that a mission to Europa could actually happen.  Adding to the science of it is the way the movie was filmed.  We’re watching an uploaded report, inter-cut with talking heads from the team on Earth and other things.  There isn’t much that feels staged, it’s as if we’re just watching the surveillance footage from their mission, just edited together.  It’s using the tricks found in Paranormal Activity but in a sci fi world, and for that I love it.

The bad; it’s predictable.

The story is told in a non-linear fashion… I don’t think that added anything to the experience.  It makes me wonder how the film would be if it were edited chronologically?  I’d like to think that the impact of certain scenes would still hold up, if not more so.  Oh well.

*SPOILERS* When the first victim (Sharlto Copley) bites it, the moment is simple and not an action scene with huge explosions.  Very similar to Tim Robbins’ death in Mission To Mars.  Really liked how they covered that scene.
The end… like with the director’s cut of Close Encounters Of The Third Kind we’re shown too much.  I would rather the film footage be consumed by a bright light than to be shown a glimpse of an alien… *END SPOILERS*

Overall I had fun going on this journey, but was left very in the middle when the credits came up.  The music is done by the great Bear McCreary.  If you like hard science fiction, I would recommend Europa Report, but look past it’s flaws.
But it feels like there was a missed opportunity for a great movie here.

Review: Pacific Rim – giant robots and monsters, oh myyyyyy…..

Pacific Rim is about a near future where monstrous aliens have come from the pacific ocean, and the only way to combat this threat?  Giant robots, that’s right, THE ONLY way is with giant robots.

The good; everything looks great.  The closest thing I can remember to live action giant robots is Robot Jox, and that was a hot mess of a movie.  Here we get massive machines and they’re all CG, but there’s a weight to the way they move, with every punch and step I could feel all that metal moving.  The ILM peeps did a great job.

The action is clear and in focus!  I can actually see what’s going on, it’s clear that a robot is throwing a punch and hitting a monster.  Every other movie today, please take note of how to cover action sequences here…

Hong Kong looks amazing in this movie, so much color, like a more vivid version of Blade Runner’s Los Angeles.

Not really a spoiler, but there’s a little girl in this movie (you see this from the trailer), and she is amazing.  George Lucas needs to take a page from del Toro on how to direct actors in a green screen environment.  Bravo little girl!

The bad; what bad?  If anything, I only have minor things, so here goes.

The film doesn’t feel like a del Toro movie to me, I mean yes, it does have Ron Perlman.  But there are story points that I would’ve liked to be fleshed out a little more.  I won’t go into them, they’d be spoilers for those who haven’t seen the movie.

More robots, I wanted more Jaegers fighting, they covered the action so well that it felt like a breath of fresh air and I wanted more and more.

*SEMI-SPOILER* the ending was too happy for a del Toro movie, there’s some logic reasoning that I thought of afterwards.  Mainly, why did those pilots have to die?  When in the next scene we see that there’s an ejection pod system? *END SEMI-SPOILERS*

Overall, go see this marvel in the theatre.  Cloverfield was supposed to be the new monster movie, nope, it’s Pacific Rim by far.  This film knows what it is and goes with it.  People complain that most of the action takes place at night, in the rain, or underwater… so?  Despite all of that, I can see what’s going on, the shots are in focus and on a tri-pod.  What novelty these ideas are.  I’ll take an underwater fight scene where I can clearly see everything over a Michael Bay sunset silhouetted shot that’s hand held and in extreme closeup.  As soon as Pacific Rim ended, I wanted it to start all over again!

Elvira, Mistress of the Dark, No More! Comikaze Expo is Her Final Convention Appearance

That’s right, after November 6th, Elvira, the Mistress of the Dark, will no longer be making convention appearances. Comikaze Expo, at the Los Angeles Convention Center, will mark the last convention appearance of Elvira, Mistress of the Dark. As the official “spooksperson” of Comikaze Expo, Elvira (aka Cassandra Peterson) will sign autographs, pose for photos with fans and take part in various events throughout the Expo.

Elvira became a household name as the host of Elvira’s Movie Macabre, the first nationally syndicated horror movie show. The weekly series featured the sexy, outrageous movie hostess’ sharp wit and clever banter throughout her tongue-in-cheek commentary of B-movie classics. Her reign as ‘Queen of Halloween’ spans three decades and includes two feature films, her long-running series and two motion control rides. Her appearance at Comikaze Expo solidifies the event’s commitment to horror fans and promises to be a memorable experience for all.

Comikaze Expo is the largest multimedia pop culture convention in Los Angeles. This unique event brings together the best in comics, gaming, horror, sci-fi, fantasy, anime and all other cult programming. Comikaze takes place November 5-6 at the Los Angeles Convention Center, and offers a slate of innovative programming, panels, contests and other activities that provide fans access to their favorite artists and creators in this adventure-packed weekend. The event will kick off with an appearance by the father of modern comics, Stan Lee, at the event’s ribbon-cutting ceremony.


Tickets are already on sale for an awesome price of $12 and kids under 12 get in for free. Please go to the official Comikaze Expo page for additional information and a full list of scheduled guests and events.


Twelve bucks for a convention ticket isn’t gonna break the bank. Heck, parking usually costs that much. I’m quite excited to see what this convention will offer and how fun it will be. Come back for more information as the con draws near.

Comikaze Expo is Coming to Los Angeles on November 5 and 6.

Comikaze Expo is Los Angeles’ first and only large-scale, multi-media pop culture convention. Guests of honor include legendary comic book created Stan Lee, and Elvira, Mistress of the Dark. Additionally, there will be star-studded panels with artists, writers and creators and cast reunions from Nickelodeon’s All That and the Police Academy movies.

Comikaze also boasts independent film screenings, live shows, celebrity appearances, fan contests, games, portfolio reviews and even a masquerade ball. Expect this expo to be a bit different than your regular comic convention, as Comikaze seems to focus more on the community and culture.

Find more information on their website.

Tickets are only $12, but if you want discounted tickets, you can purchase them off of Goldstar.

Where’s Wall-E?

Where’s Wall-E?

I don’t know who the artist is of this beautiful image, but somewhere in the mix of classic to modern robots is Disney’s Wall-E. I haven’t found him yet, but I recognize a bunch of famous robots from all decades of television, movies, cartoons, and even reality (find the Sony original bi-pedal walking robot QRIO).

I’ve found Cylons from Battlestar Galactica, the Lost in Space robot, that robot from the old 80s movie “Millennium”, Scooter from GoBots, Dotty from Spaceballs, even the Humping Robot from Robot Chicken! The artist even put robot Bill and Ted from “Bill and Ted’s Bogus Journey.” The list just goes on…

It makes me feel nostalgic.

But… I still haven’t found Wall-E. Can you?

What other characters can you all name/find?



(Update: I have found Wall-E)