Check out the latest video mashup “premake” by Ivan Guerrero – a trailer for a 1952 version of The Avengers movie, based on Marvel’s “Secret Invasion” storyline, spliced together from over 50 different sources of footage:
And then, to get a real sense of the buckets of attention to detail, skill, love, and sheer nerdiness that went into this, watch it again with Ivan’s annotations (below). He calls out all of the character and location cameos that you might have missed, and even breaks down the typographical references in the title cards! (Pause the video each time a note box pops up.) Read the rest of this entry »
My wife and I went and saw Winter’s Bone last night. It is a small release film concerning the Meth trade in Southern Missouri.
I was raised in a family that was pretty much evenly split between Evangelical Christians and a meth cartel in the Saint Francois Mountains, on the Missouri side of the Ozarks. In the county where I was born, they discovered 76 Meth labs in 2004. In the county just north they found 259. This does not mean that Saint Francois is any better than Madison, but rather that Madison is on the Ozark Plateau and is mostly wide open space, where as my people are in the mountains where you aren’t going to find anything that means to be hidden. At any rate, in the same statistical year, Missouri had more known labs than any other state by more than a thousand, the runner up being Iowa (2,788 vs. 1,300)
I write on this subject a lot, having lost three siblings to the trade in one way or another, and watched a great portion of my family turn into rabid animals who act as if they always have one leg in a trap. But there is something about seeing it as written by someone else. Something so intimate and invasive. It is like being stolen from and awarded something all at the same time. Like having a stranger on the subway tell you that you have the most beautiful scars. Walking out, I teared up for dead people whose funerals I skipped at the time.
All of this emotional catharsis in the sushi place after the show means, of course, that the film is brilliantly executed. I am ashamed to say that it captures it quite well. There are other sides it does not capture, like the inherent comedy of some of the redneck antics, but it is a movie, not a TV series, and it has two hours to tell a story.
Just to have it said, my solo show Monsters In The Wood and the forthcoming book based on the show does cover those other bases. Just to have it said.
Anyway, see this movie. It is ugly and beautiful and it made an Ozark refugee get a little weepy on the Lower East Side last night.
Back in the 1970′s someone talked George Lucas and the poor actors of Star Wars into doing a The Star Wars Holiday Special. I saw this on a cold December Friday night, I was 12, I was mortified to tears. What had they done!
Years later George Lucas was said to have made this statement “If I had the time and a hammer, I would smash every copy of the Holiday Special.”
Doug Karo and the Late Night Explosion have watched the full two hour show, bless them, and they have then edited the worst 5 minutes together for our enjoyment, bless them again.
Meet Chewbacca’s family, listen to Carrie Fisher Sing lyrics to the Star Wars theme, and don’t forget special guest stars Art Carney, Bea Arthur and The Jefferson Star Ship!
And if you really want to geek out, did you know that there are lyrics to the Buck Rogers Theme song? in 1979 the tv-series pilot had a theatrical release which included this epic intro… and I mean epic. When I was 13 I loved this song so much I bought the sound track album – which I still have. I also wanted all of the silver-space-babe outfits. Especially the bikini. *note to self, make silver space bikini.
BTW: The people at www.livevideo.com won’t let me embed this video so click to link below – enjoy!
I talked to a bunch of folks about it ahead of time, none of whom could make it out. Fair enough. Zach’s a nice young man, and was kind enough/self-promotional enough to post the video on Vimeo. Here it is, see for yourselves:
I just stumbled across this awesome dub job done a couple of years ago by the guy(s) over at AKJAK, who replaced Darth Vader’s lines in Star Wars with James Earl Jones dialogue from other movies:
(The intro is a little awkward, and the song at the end is just puzzling… so I’ve set it to skip ahead to 0:44 when the absolute gold kicks in, and as far as I’m concerned, you can stop at 8:40. But it’s your life.)
As I type this, zero hour for the US general election is drawing ridiculously close. By now, most voters have made their choices… even if they’re claiming to be “undecided” just so people will pay attention to them. Jeff and I are solid on who we’re not voting for, and I was pretty much a lock on who would be getting my (at this point purely symbolic) little slice of the New York popular vote… until I saw these:
Long after humans succumb to self-induced extinction, alien anthropologists are going to visit Earth and come to an obvious conclusion: Spider-Man was our God. Even if you discount the unholy rotten truckloads of Slurpee cups and action figures used to market the films, Spider-Man’s so much a part of our collective consciousness that he may as well be a God — we use the story to tell moral fables and … forget it. Just forget it.
I was trying to put an intellectual spin on everything here, but the fact is that I’m a nerd and way more stoked about Spider-Man 3 than an adult should be. The whole point of life is to be excited about stuff, as excited as you can be, and I’m trying my damnedest to access the passion I felt for Spider-Man as a kid. It’s working pretty well, too. So instead of inflating this post with a bunch of pseudo-intellectual nonsense, I’ll get to the nerdy fun.
Here’s ten incarnations of Spider-Man that will never, ever make it into a movie:
Japanese Spider Man
The Japanese Spider-Man TV show aired in the late 70′s and did what Japanese culture does best: took a pre-existing idea and made it completely insane. Check out the opening credits:
In the following clip, several samurai led by a man with a beer can for a face have captured Spider-man and are menacing him with their swords. A Japanese mariachi appears on the hillside, strums a few chords and hoses the bad guys down with a stream of bullets emanating from his guitar, which naturally doubles as a machine gun. Spider-man escapes to thrilling music, using his spider-like abilities to strike some poses and rapidly climb a large dirt pile. Our hero bests several bad guys with a few well-timed kicks and calls for his sports car over his wrist radio. The man with the beer can face grows to Godzilla size and since this is 70′s Japan, low-budget Voltron shows up to save the day.
It’s not really Christianity that’s so bad, it’s just that Pat Robertson and Ned Flanders have pretty much given it a bad rap. I found a couple folks on Flickr that are using Spider-Man to tell Bible stories. One of them’s definitely making fun of Ned Flanders Christians … the other guy isn’t.
Why is it weak when Christians co-opt Spider-Man to tell Bible stories, but when Hindu folks make a Spider-Man Ganesh it’s cool? I’m not 100 percent on this, but I think it’s because white people are just kinda lame.
Bollywood Spider-Woman, Superman
In this clip from a Bollywood classic, Superman and a woman in a Spider-Man costume fly over the city kissing, pausing to break funky dance moves in a city park, fight bad guys and celebrate their victory with more funky dance moves and in-flight smooching.
Spider-Man’s fought alongside some pretty colorful people in his day, but none quite so colorful as WWE Superstar Lou Albano. In this Indian comic, Spidey teams up with Lou Albano, Superman, Batman and large wizard who looks like Moses to save the day. Unfortunately, an evil wizard turns Lou Albano into an violent giant and an Indian superhero is forced to kill him by force-feeding him some deadly snakes.
My Son Sean, on his 7th Birthday, with “Spiderman”
I met up with lady who use to work in the costume department at whichever movie studio did Spiderman stuff. She was able to get hold of some Spiderman films and made a costume for her son to wear. It was pretty good, except his glasses showed underneath the eye cut outs … As a single mom at the time, a spiderman Birthday Party for that many kids was a big deal for my wallet, and I was so hoping Sean would like it.
Loosely translated to “3 Mighty Men,” this Turkish film delivers the stange, alright. El Santo and Captain America team up against a villainous Spider-man with glasses and giant fluffy eyebrows. He instructs some gangsters to bury a woman up to her neck in sand, puts rodents into a tube aimed at some guy’s face (a la 1984) and has a neglected physique that makes your IT guy look like Hercules.