The Watchmen

So now is a good time to discuss this, because I happen to be reading the graphic novel The Watchmen right now.  Written by Alan Moore between 1986 and 1987, it was originally published as twelve issues.  I decided to get all of them at once, because I happen to be an instant-gratification-loving American.  Compared to the movie, it’s actually very similar, and if you’ve seen the movie fifty times like I have, you can see some of the instances where they will take a line from one scene of the novel and make it stick out in a significant way in a different way.  I also hear that the ending is different, but nobody tell me what happens.

The movie, however, is probably just as good, if not better, for those who don’t naturally get sucked into something like I and other fanboys do.  There is so much more info, only sort-of implied or left out of the movie, in the comics that I don’t want it to end.  I already know the story, but not the whole story, it appears.  Reading the graphic novel for me is like hearing a story from someone who gets the basic idea and some kool details, and then hearing it retold by someone that knows the whole thing.

Whatever it is about The Watchmen that has drawn so many fans can probably not be discussed all at once, so maybe somebody can lend an opinion.  For me, I’m a big fan of history, and the interesting take on the altering of the twentieth century as a result of superheroes, especially Dr. Manhattan, is what has really drawn me in.  Plus, it takes an interesting trip through the minds of people living in a time of imminent nuclear war, but I’m an English Major, so maybe I’m in a minority that looks for that kind of stuff.  From that perspective, every character in the novel has something to offer in terms of personal experience, strife, struggle, and all of that fun psychological stuff.  If you haven’t seen The Watchmen yet, or better yet read it, then get off the internet and go watch it.  Comment first.  Then go.

Just in case you were trying to think of a way the movie could have been terrible.

Published in: on April 7, 2011 at 8:56 pm  Leave a Comment  
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Zack Snyder’s Sucker Punch

Due to the recent release of the new film Sucker Punch, currently in theatres as of April 1, 2011, I am excited to once again dive into the study of what makes the films director successful in his craft.  If you haven’t heard of him by name yet, most nerds like me will be lying if they say they haven’t seen Zack Snyder’s previous work, (300, Watchmen, 2004 Remake of Dawn of the Dead) which, frankly, has reached a new level of action-based film.  To start, the visual work he utilizes is something seldom seen in other films.  The slow-motion fight scenes and random clips suggesting change in speed are no doubt helpful in adding to the excitement of the film, but the concept is running its course, especially in this era, where everybody is so jaded when it comes to entertainment.  When all of your viewers have seen it all, what can you do next?

Zack Snyder stepped up (after Dawn of the Dead, of course) and devised a style all his own.  The result is almost like a mixture of comic book artistry, video game action, and the most action-packed dream you’ve ever had.  Any given shot in 300, for example, can still impress me in some way.  The second thing to note is that his style makes it perfect (or perhaps it is the other way around) to make films based on graphic novels.  Fanboys of this genre of literature no-doubt had mixed feelings when their beloved epic comics started to show up in film, but the accurate portrayal and even, in the sense of adding sound and controlled flow, improvement of these comics is no trouble for Snyder’s style.  I will most likely open new discussions for each of these films, because further discussion is needed to do them any justice.  Or better yet, go watch the movies, and you’ll see what I’m talking about.

I haven’t seen Sucker Punch yet, but it’s on my to-do list.  Hopefully it will live up to expectations, at least on a cinematography level.

Pretty ladies with automatic weapons. Together, who cares about the plot? Right guys? I mean, right? Haha... Where you goin'?

Published in: on April 7, 2011 at 7:38 pm  Comments (2)  
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Scurrilous; The Discovery; Celestial Completion; Hypersleep Dialogues; Yes

Ok, I know it seems like all I’ve done so far is complaining about new music, I figured I would go over several recent releases altogether so perhaps I’ll have some good things to say as well.

First new release that I personally have been waiting for is the new album Scurrilous by the Canadian Progressive Metal Band Protest The Hero.  I love this band and couldn’t wait for this to come out, and then I think I didn’t really like it.  They have a signature style in their first two releases that are based around playing off-tempo, sometimes confusing musical pieces, but in Scurrilous, I found little of this.  It’s still a fantastic album, don’t get me wrong, but I think they should have kept that chaotic writing style, especially because that’s what their true fans like.  Other than that, it’s still a beautiful album and you should probably just listen for yourself.

The second album I was waiting for was The Discovery by Illinois’ Born of Osiris.  They, too, have a crazy style about them, and on this, its been taken to the next level.  Their mathcore deathcore blend thing they had been using in the past has been blended with more progressive elements to make a pretty awesome sound.  I recommend it if you like the heavier sort of progressive.  I should probably save my rant about their label Sumerian for a later post, because, seriously, wow.

The third, if you like the sort of thing, is the new release from Georgia-based ‘super-religious but still awesome’ metal band Becoming The Archetype.  The album Celestial Completion is the closest thing I could ever have imagined the perfect union of massive breathtaking Gospel Choir and bone-crushing Death Metal to be.  Also pretty progressive, it’s worth it straight listen-through, but that’s just me.

Hmm let’s see, Emmure released another album.  Yay.  Speaker of the Dead is just more of the same tough-guy nonsense that you can expect from these guys.  No, I haven’t listened to it all the way though, I’ve just had enough of this band, and they released an album just last year.  I don’t see how they, no offense, can have made an entire decent album in a year.  Take it or leave it.

In a feeble attempt to capitalize in some way from the loss of arguably their best band, super-amazing progressive metal outfit Between The Buried And Me, Victory Records has decided to release a ‘greatest-hits’ for the band, who has released maybe four or five albums.  They may be amazing, but the two disc plus DVD set almost includes all of their work.  These albums were meant to be heard in the order the artist put them, so why not just get the whole things in order to hear what was meant to be heard?  This ‘greatest-hits’ scam seems helpful, but if you like Between The Buried And Me, you’re probably have experience with the music world, like me, and you know better.  Get their albums (especially Colors) and have your mind blown up.  Also, under their new label Metal Blade, they release their new e.p. The Parallax:  Hypersleep Dialogues later in April. I know it’s an e.p. but it’s still new original music, so it’s probably good.


Releases April 12

Slayer’s Jeff Hanneman contracts rare and deadly disease

Jeff Hanneman

Hanneman, alongside bandmate Kerry King

The guitarist of the multi-gold (which is good for metal) Thrash Metal band Slayer is reported to have a flesh-eating disease, known as necrotizing fasciitis, threatening to eat his body.  Hanneman had surgery a while back to try to combat it before it got out of control.  He is expected to recover, and who knows, they can probably use ‘necrotizing fasciitis’ for a song title.   They’ll need some song ideas after their last album.  Which wasn’t good.  Their last album.  Wasn’t good.  You get it.  World Painted Blood is even a dumb album title.  I wanna see a comeback, and maybe near-death experience will be the key.  You never know.  Good luck, Jeff.