Tuesday, November 14, 2017

Post-Ragnarok Rankings

1a.Captain America: Civil War
1b. Guardians of the Galaxy
1c. Captain America: The Winter Soldier
1d. Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2
5. Avengers
6. Iron Man
7. Thor: Ragnarok
8. Doctor Strange
9. Iron Man 3
10. Spider-Man: Homecoming
11. Avengers: Age of Ultron
12. Thor
13. Captain America: The First Avenger
14. Ant-Man
15. Iron Man 2
16. Thor: The Dark World
17. The Incredible Hulk

Thoughts on Thor: Ragnarok

A few thoughts on Thor: Ragnarok:

-Who would have thought the way to make a great Thor movie was to make it Guardians of the Galaxy?

-That's a bit of an exaggeration but this film obviously owes a ton to those two. It doesn't get made without them coming first.

-The movie is really colorful. It almost hurts your eyes. Also, if you're at all familiar with the late comic artist Jack Kirby his art influences the look of the movie very much.

-This movie is funny. Probably too funny, the humor undercuts some of the more dramatic moments. Like with Iron Man 3 I find myself liking the movie a lot but wondering what the darker version would be like.

-The Hulk is great in this movie, and he's in much more of the film than I expected.

-The movie takes material from multiple different comic stories and I was impressed that it came together as a cohesive whole. I'm also pretty surprised at the way it ended.

-I like the movie a lot but there are definitely a few details that bug me as a comic fan. Your mileage may vary.

-Cate Blanchett is good as Hela but the role isn't very deep. She's still a lot of fun though.

-Dr. Strange makes an appearance and part of it is right out of the post-credit scene that Thor appeared in earlier. It's a nice scene but the magic is very inconsistent with how things worked in his movie.

-Chris Hemsworth is a great comedic actor.

-The mid-credit scene is somewhat important, the post-credit scene is just fun.

Monday, October 23, 2017

Thursday, October 19, 2017


Credit Suisse is projecting lower earnings for CBS and Fox because NFL ratings are dropping. It depends on how exactly you calculate the numbers but ratings are generally down 16-18% from two years ago. You'll see a less dramatic decrease from last year to this year but that's because last year was already a record low. The bottom line is something is definitely hurting NFL ratings and anthem protests seem to be a major part of that.

As for me, I haven't watched a snap of NFL football since the Sunday night game the week the NFL was responding to Trump's tweets. I also bought Coke instead of Pepsi the last few times at the store since Pepsi is the official NFL soft drink. Not sure how long this will last but I'm definitely finding myself doing something I never would have expected.

Monday, September 25, 2017

Taking A Knee

I hadn't really followed the commentary around Trump's tweeting about NFL protests last week and I was out of town for part of Sunday so it wasn't until shortly before the Sunday night game that I was somewhat caught up on what was going on. I did turn the game on, but after seeing so many of the Raiders and a few Redskins kneeling I walked out of the room. I turned it off a few minutes later, though part of that was due to audio issues they were having with the broadcast. Still, I have to say that while I've disliked the anthem protests all along, this Sunday made a difference. The league decided to get behind these players and for the first time I find myself disliking the league as a whole, not just some of the players. I'm not sure I'm ready to quit but I'm actually finding myself thinking about it. I have to think there are other fans thinking the same, especially since NFL fans tend to skew Republican, and turn out to vote. Alejandro Villenueva, NFL lineman and U.S. Army veteran, the only Steeler to stand outside the tunnel for the anthem, has the best-selling jersey in the last 24 hours. I'd buy a shirt myself but the money would just go to the NFL. Anyway, this could turn out bad for the NFL and for once I'm rooting against them.

Friday, August 04, 2017

"Gotham needs its true hero."

Kevin Conroy is Batman. He's never wore the cape and cowl onscreen but he's still the definitive version of the character, voicing him for 25 years in animation and video games. Below, he reads Batman's speech from the end of The Dark Knight.

Saturday, July 29, 2017

Thoughts on Dunkirk

What do you need to know about Dunkirk? I think this statement from a 97-year-old veteran who was there says it all:

“I never thought I would see that again. It was just like I was there again.”

Which means it is intense. Early in the film there is an attack by a Stuka dive bomber and the volume increases to almost painful levels as the screaming plane makes its bombing run. I wanted to duck under my seat. Zimmer's score also keeps everything tense as I'm sure you can imagine if you're familiar with his work. It's not something you'd want to turn on and unwind with after a long day. I'm listening to it now (thanks Amazon Prime) and getting a little tense.

A few other thoughts:

-The movie is split into three stories each taking place over a different period of time: One week, one day, one hour. This is clearly indicated in the titles but many people, including myself, seemed to have missed that at first.

-"Mole" is another word for essentially a big break wall, so when you see that show up in the titles don't think the guy on the screen is a German spy. This also confused me until they used the word later in the movie.

-If water really freaks you out don't watch this movie. It's definitely as close as I ever want to be to being inside a sinking ship.

-The movie is surprising bloodless. There is plenty of violence and death but it's not gory like the opening sequence of Saving Private Ryan.

-You're probably going to jump multiple times watching this movie.

-It's a different movie than some of Nolan's previous work, like Interstellar and Inception, but I still liked it a lot. I will need to see it again to really appreciate it because the first time you sort of just survive it.

-The movie ends with one of the characters reading Churchill's famous speech in a newspaper. Here's the speech: