RSS

Monthly Archives: December 2014

Exodus: Gods and Kings Review

Howdy ladies and gents, even though 2014 is over and I’ve already given you my top 10 films and my end of year review, I still have one more film review to give you before we transition into 2015 and it comes in the form of Exodus: Gods and Kings. Now this is a film I was actually going to give a miss because a lack of interest however near the time of release I heard some good things about the film so I decided to give it a chance. I watched it last night and now I’m ready to pass judgement.

exodus-gods-and-kings-pstr04

The story, can be described as the following:

“Epic adventure Exodus: Gods and Kings is the story of one man’s daring courage to take on the might of an empire. Using state of the art visual effects and 3D immersion, Scott brings new life to the story of the defiant leader Moses as he rises up against the Egyptian Pharaoh Ramses, setting 600,000 slaves on a monumental journey of escape from Egypt and its terrifying cycle of deadly plagues.”

I thought the story had some interesting updates to the classic tale but overall it just came across as bit dull. From the beginning you are meant to connect with Moses and Ramesses so that you can understand their goals in life, but the film doesn’t give you any time to know who these people are, what kind of connection they have and why we should care. You also don’t care for Moses’ mission to become a leader who has to safe his people because he does nothing significant to be of interest and it doesn’t help that his relationship with god is strained and complicated. I don’t know, all the time I was watching the film I was just comparing it to the original story and The Prince of Egypt and wondered, “Why was this changed?”, “Why did this character do that?” “Who is this random person?” All of the changes in the film felt unnecessary, strange and done just for the sake of change rather than having a good reason for it.

exodus-gods-and-kings03

When it comes to the cast there were performances that ranged from fine to over-the-top to dull. In truth the only person that mattered was Christian Bale as Moses. Moses is the main character, however he isn’t that likeable, he has no great heroic or leader-like qualities and he has no personality either. He’s not a relatable protagonist and when he’s in trouble or is struggling you don’t care because he’s just a bit meh. Bale seems like the only person actually trying to put on a show in this film. Joel Edgerton as Ramesses II, my god, what a bore. This is not the cool character from the Dreamworks animation, instead what we have here is a spoilt brat who has no redeeming features, is not relatable and seems to have a stick up his ass all the time. Edgerton is better actor than this and I feel like this is the worst film I’ve seen him in. John Turturro as Seti I was actually alright, after seeing the horrible performances in Michael Bay’s Transformers films, he was very reserved, calm and quite nice. Aaron Paul as Joshua, it was a bit bizarre to see Paul in a film like this, he was alright but incredibly wasted. Ben Kingsley was decent as Nun but he wasn’t in the film enough to be that relevant. Ben Mendelsohn was invisible as Hegep. Sigourney Weaver as Tuya, all I can say is what a waste of a role. Weaver is just there to stand around and say a few lines, her character could have been played by anyone or written out of the film entirely and it would not have made any difference to the story. What a waste. MarĂ­a Valverde was okay as Zipporah, but she barely had enough screen time to be a fully developed character and whenever she was around she was boring as hell.

The presentation was probably the best thing to come out this film. The CGI is very detailed, realistic, epic and used to great effect in the huge action sequences. The music by Alberto Iglesias is pretty good too, I did like the way it had a certain level of epicness and drama to it.

exodus-gods-and-kings10

In conclusion Exodus: Gods and Kings is serviceable film but an unnecessary one. For all of its grand visual flair it doesn’t have a story that’s interesting or engaging enough for me to care. The characters are dull and forgettable, the pacing is slow and there are chucks of details in the story that get completely omitted for no reason.

Rating: 5/10

So what did you think of Exodus: Gods and Kings? Did you like it, hate it or thought it was alright? Also how do you feel it compares to the original source material? Whatever your thoughts are be sure to leave them in the comments section below and I’ll see ya in the new year! Laters! 😀

 
2 Comments

Posted by on December 31, 2014 in Film Reviews, Films, Media, Reviews

 

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

End of Year Review 2014

cooltext866525182

Howdy ladies and gents, it looks like 2014 is well and truly over and so now its time for my annual END OF YEAR REVIEW! And this year is 4th edition on WordPress. 🙂 It seems like 2014 has flown by even though it felt long while it was happening, but today is New Year’s Eve, so let’s look back and talk about it. As with previous entries I will talk about the year as a whole from my perspective, breaking it down into sections and then concluding with a summary. You ready? Cool, let’s go!

Video Games

When it comes to gaming I can say I’ve had a better year than before, while at university I had the chance to play a lot of games on Steam with my mates and while not many of them were new, I did have a lot of fun playing them. In terms of new games I’ve played Trials Fusion, Super Smash Bros. for 3DS, Goat Simulator and recently Mario Kart 8. As for the other games I’ve played I Fire Emblem: Awakening, Kid Icarus: Awakening, Marvel Vs. Capcom 3, Kingdom Hearts HD 1.5 Remix and The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword being the main games I’ve messed around with. Something tells me that I’ve played more than what I’ve listed but this is the main stuff and hopefully if I get more money next year I’ll be able to play more new games.

Films

When it comes to films, 2014 I would say was a pretty good year for films, not the best but certainly better than last year for sure. Sure we had to endure films like Transformers 4, Horrible Bosses 2 and A Million Ways To Die In The West, but then we had good stuff like The Raid 2, Get On Up and Interstellar. This year definitely had more hits than misses and I certainly had fun in the cinema especially when it came to some of my IMAX experiences.

So now I give you my top 10 films of the year. Technically I already did a blog about my top 10, but for those who haven’t seen it I will list it below and as usual I’m only counting films released in 2014, films originally released in 2013 that only got UK release this year DOESN’T COUNT! Okay here’s my list:

Top 10 Films of 2014

  1. Captain America: The Winter Soldier
  2. Gone Girl
  3. Dawn of the Planet of the Apes
  4. Guardians of the Galaxy
  5. Nightcrawler
  6. X-Men: Days of Future Past
  7. How To Train Your Dragon 2
  8. Godzilla
  9. Edge of Tomorrow
  10. The Imitation Game

Honourable mentions:

  • 22 Jump Street
  • Hunger Games: Mockingjay – Part 1
  • The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies
  • Get On Up
  • The Raid 2: Berandal
  • The Maze Runner
  • Begin Again
  • Noah
  • The Grand Budapest Hotel

When it comes to upcoming films I think that 2014 will be better, I’m praying for it. With epic titles like Godzilla, Dawn of the Planet of the Apes, Captain America: The Winter Soldier, Guardians of the Galaxy, Interstellar, Sabotage, The Amazing Spider-Man 2, X-Men: Days of Future Past and so much more, I’m sure that it has the potential to rectify the mistakes of this year.

Television

Oh and then there’s the television. My god 2014 has been probably my most hardcore year for watching TV shows. I’ve watched so much stuff on TV and streamed a lot online, I think I had an addiction for sure. I had to say goodbye to one of my all-time favourite shows in the form of Boardwalk Empire (sad times). And I also got to enjoy the continuation of some of my other favourite shows like Game of Thrones, Grimm, Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., Regular Show, Arrow, The Walking Dead and Castle. I also got into a good few new shows like The 100, The Flash, Gotham and Constantine. And finally I’ve also been revisiting old TV shows like Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Sonic Satam and Hotel Babylon.

Overall its been a good year for TV and 2015 only looks better with new shows and the return of currently airing shows too.

Music

When it comes to music I haven’t listened to that much new stuff, that’s what I do every year as I haven’t cared for new music since 2008. This year the radio has irritated the hell out of me with the horrible mainstream music that today’s kids consider ‘cool’. The only song I’ve remotely liked because of its addictive nature is Charli XCX with “Boom Clap” That song’s super happy and charismatic nature won me over.

Otherwise I’ve just been going back in time for music mainly in the 90’s and early 00’s. I’ve gotten into more Anberlin, listened to a lot of Jack White, Janelle MonĂĄe, The Smashing Pumpkins, Soundgarden, Red Hot Chili Peppers, Lenny Kravitz and A Tribe Called Quest.

Top 3 Song of 2014

  1. Lazaretto by Jack White
  2. Gust of Wind by Pharrell featuring Daft Punk
  3. Next to It by Lupe Fiasco

My Experience

Oh 2014, what a year it’s been. It feels like the year has escaped me once again without me even noticing, I can remember so many points in the year when I was ready for 2014 to be over, but now that it’s here, it feels very surreal. I can’t say that this year has been the best, I’ve had to deal with so much drama, but at the same time I’ve had so much to be thankful for so I can’t really complain that much.

Let’s start with the bad stuff. 1) I would say that financially I’ve had my fair share of lows due to not enough hours at work. 2) I have had some really shitty work experiences in both the hospitality and warehouse industries to the point where I just wanted to have nothing to do with having a job ever again. 3) Within my close friend circles I had to deal with so much unnecessary drama and some of my friends drifted from me, possibly forever. And 4) I swear this was the year when a lot of my work colleagues just wanted to piss me off as I have had to deal with very mean, annoying and two-faced people across several of my different jobs this year. And I think that’s the main things.

Now let’s talk the good stuff. Continuing from last year, this was a year being more adventurous and daring. I met Stan Lee, volunteered at the Children’s Media Conference, got to go to two video game concerts for Zelda and Final Fantasy, I went to three music gigs, had some hella fun times in the cinema, finished and graduated from university, got more into my artwork, got to work in an animation studio, I made a lot of new friends and I finally got a Wii U! I would say that counts for a positive year experience.

With all the good stuff that’s happened this year I can only hope that it translates into the next year, 2015 feels like a game-changer for sure.

Conclusion

In conclusion I would say that 2014 was a pretty good year for the most part. For all the suffering and bullshit I had to endure, I have gotten to do so much and accomplish goals that I never would have been able to do before.

If you made it to the end of this post, I have to say thank you all for reading it all. So how was your 2014? Please leave me a comment below and let me know. And finally, whether you are a regular reader or new one, have a happy new year and I hope you’ll join me in again 2015. Peace out! 😀

 
1 Comment

Posted by on December 31, 2014 in Films, Life, Media, Music, Reviews, Television, Video Games

 

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

My Top 10 Films of 2014

Top Ten Films 2014

Howdy people of the internet, the year is pretty much done and all major films that’s come out have come and gone, with all that being said I think it’s about time that I give you my top 10 list of my favourite films of 2014. Now before I get into this list I have to explain a few things:

  1. As per-usual I DO NOT include 2013 films that got released in 2014 here in the UK, and what I mean by that is films like: The Wolf of Wall Street, 12 Years A Slave, Fruitvale Station, those were originally released in 2013 in the US and for me they don’t count. I only list films that are new and were released between the start and end of this year.
  2. The following films are listed as such because I had a good time with them but I also tried to categorize them in terms of fun,  surprise and re-watch value.
  3. This list was hella hard to construct because I find it hard to stack certain films on top others when some are clearly better than others, but since it is personal enjoyment it really changes things up.

With all that in mind let’s begin shall we?

10. The Imitation Game

the-imitation-game-poster04

The last entry on this list was hard because before my final choice there were at least three other films occupying this space, but once I thought about it I found The Imitation Game deserves a spot on this top 10. This was a film I expected to be good however it really surprised me how good it was with a very intriguing story about one man’s goal to help win WWII by cracking an uncrackable Nazi code with a computer, but more so than that, it about a man struggling with his identity in a time when he wouldn’t be accepted for who he really was. And with an incredible performance from my man, Benedict Cumberbatch, it was a great piece of film to watch.

9. Edge of Tomorrow

28676_Quad+date.indd

I feel bad about Edge of Tomorrow, it is a film I keep forgetting came out this year because it was released in a very specific window of time around Godzilla and X-Men: Days of Future Past, so it sort of slipped under the radar. But make no mistake I like this film, in fact, I REALLY liked. The best thing about this film was the way it surprised me with how fun and awesome it was. I mean the trailer for the film looked so shit and I seriously thought the film was gonna be crap from the way it was marketed, but man I was so wrong. This film’s main aspect was the repetition of going through the same day over and over, however it was handled in such a smart, action-packed and humourous way and with awesome performances from Tom Cruise, Emily Blunt and Bill Paxton, it was a good time.

8. Godzilla

Godzilla_Poster

Now I can see a lot of people getting on my case about this choice as Godzilla wasn’t everyone’s favourite film and putting above the previous entries will probably annoy some people. But screw it, I don’t care. This film I saw three times in the cinema and had a great experience each time. This was the reboot I wanted and while it had its problems for sure, I will never be able to get over how good the film made me feel with the great visual effects, monster fights, soundtrack and cinematography.

7. How To Train Your Dragon 2

HowToTrainYourDragon2-Poster

I think that this is the first film on the list to give me the feels yo (for those who don’t know what that means, it means: A wave of emotions that sometimes cannot be adequately explained). How To Train Your Dragon 2 was a terrific sequel to the 2010 original which pretty much improved the first film in every way possible. The story was deeper, the visuals were detailed, the music was incredible and the characters were so wonderful. Overall the film just gave me an emotional feelings that I haven’t felt in an animated film for a while.

6. X-Men: Days of Future Past

X-Men-Days-Of-Future-Past-Characters-Wallpaper1

Ah X-Men: Day of Future Past, you lovely film you. This was the film I was really hoping would be good because it could have been a train wreck, but it ended up being one of my favourite experiences in the cinema. This film had some great action, a cool time travel story and an incredible cast of past and present characters. Bryan Singer not only continued the good string of X-Men films but he CORRECTED THE FRIGGING TIME AND ERASED X-MEN 3 AND X-MEN ORIGINS: WOLVERINE FROM EXISTENCE! BEST. THING. EVER. It really does annoy me that this film escaped the top 5, however I believe that the next films honestly just beat it out of the higher half of this list.

5. Nightcrawler

nightcrawler_uk_poster

Okay now we’re into the meaty half of the list and here we have a film that I had no expectation for and it ended up being on one of my favourite films of the year. Nightcrawler is one of the most impressive films I have seen in a while as it deals with a subject matter that is very close to life; news reporting. Through a determined yet unsettling main character Lou Bloom, we get to see the inner workings of how news is filmed and presented and the dodgy dealings that go on behind the scenes. The film is disturbing and makes you question the morals and ethics of that line of work and thanks to an epic performance from Jake Gyllenhaal, it was a film I had to watch twice.

4. Guardians of the Galaxy

guardian-of-the-galaxy-poster

Oh yes, Guardians of the Friggin’ Galaxy! This was a film I was hyped for, but didn’t know whether it would turn out to be good or not because it was an unknown Marvel comic book property when compared to its previous films. However Marvel Studios proved that they can pretty make anything work as this was not only one of the best comic book films in recent history but also one of the best sci-fi films for quite some time. It also helped that the soundtrack was amazing, the cast were incredible and the humour was on-point throughout.

3. Dawn of the Planet of the Apes

dawn-of-the-planet-of-apes-poster

This is a film that I think deserved that spot especially after seeing it the second time. Dawn of the Planet of the Apes is such a great film, it takes the foundation of the first film and expands upon it in a great and unique way. This was the film where the apes were the focus, it was not only about Caesar but also about Koba too and their relationship. The film was very dark, emotional and tension-filled throughout with awesome performances and incredible visual effects.

2. Gone Girl

GoneGirl-poster

Man, Gone Girl, what a great film. This was almost number one, however I really would have needed to see this film a second time to know if I loved it to the highest degree. That being said this was a film that loads of people were talking about before it was released and then I saw it, and then I believed in the hype. I don’t know how this film compared to book, however as a film I thought it was incredibly thought-provoking, full of tension and had so many unexpected twists and turns. Ben Affleck gave a great performance but I think it was Rosamund Pike that really surprised me with her incredible performance for sure.

1. Captain America: The Winter Soldier

Captain-America-The-Winter-Soldier-Poster

It was a close call between this film and Gone Girl, however in the end I think I always knew that Captain America: The Winter Soldier would end up being my number one. When considering my first experience with the film, how many times I’ve seen it and how much fun I had with it, I just had to put it as my number one. Cap 2 pretty much outdone the original in every way possible and was the first film since The Avengers that’s truly changed the game for the Marvel Cinematic Universe with its story and genre-focused adventure. Add on top of that great characters, an amazing story, some of the most impressive action sequences and hand-to-hand combat that would make your mind explode, this was one of the best comic book films to come out, ever.

Conclusion

In the end 2014, its had its ups and downs but I do believe that its been a WAY better yeah than 2013. The good films were awesome and made me feel super happy and satisfied with my time at the cinema. With 2015 on the horizon I can’t wait for Avengers: Age of Ultron, Star Wars: The Force Awakens, Spectre, Jurassic World and Tomorrowland among some of the major films I’m interested in, I cannot wait to see how it turns out.

So how do you feel about my list and are any of your favourites on here? Also do you feel like some of these entries are wrong? And just in general what were you favourite films of 2014? Whatever your thoughts are be sure to leave them below and I’ll see ya on the next blog post, laters! 😀

 
7 Comments

Posted by on December 31, 2014 in Films, Media

 

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Buffy The Vampire Slayer Season 4 Review

Howdy ladies and gentlemen and welcome to another TV review and today I will be reviewing season 4 of Buffy the Vampire Slayer. So after a good time with season 1, 2 and 3, I am ready for more. Minor spoilers follow…

buffy-season4-cover

As usual, we follow the life of Buffy Summers; normal teenager by day, vampire slayer by night. As part of the “Scooby Gang” along with Giles, Xander and Willow, except this time with less Cordelia and more Oz, as they take on the supernatural happenings that go on in Sunnydale.

The show continues to have episodic stories, but also has stories that continue over the course of the season that relate to things that have happened in the past and present too. This season deals with Buffy and her friends growing up and moving to university and taking on the problems that come with higher education and social interaction, but also all the classic supernatural issues that come with life surrounding the slayer.

buffy-season4-cast

Story-wise this season definitely changes things up from the get go, having the Scooby gang separated in different directions and experiencing the real world beyond high school feels very odd at first, but it does present some new adventures and personal journeys for some individuals especially when it comes to Buffy, Willow and Oz. There is a lot of new content to take in with some of it being hilarious and exciting, but it’s not all fun and games, there are moments of mystery, surprise, drama and melancholy emotions for sure. Luckily there are some familiar characters and scenarios to keep things from feeling too detached. I also feel like I’m at the right age to be watching this show, besides being a big fan of TV and being a massive fan of Joss Whedon and his work with other TV shows and films, right now, having been a recent university student, this show really resonates with me. Having gone through the whole uni adventure myself, this show happens to capture perfectly, the uncertainty and the ups and downs of being a uni student. Whether it be moving away from home and living in a new environment, being the newbie on campus, living with difficult people, having hard times in class or missing the old times before higher education. Plus whoever came up with the use of the song “Believe” by Cher is a don, it is one of my all-time favourite cheesy pop song from the 90’s.

Episode highlights include:

  • The Freshman
  • Living Conditions
  • The Harsh Light of Day (personal favourite)
  • Fear Itself
  • Beer Bad
  • Wild at Heart (personal favourite)
  • Pangs (personal favourite)
  • Something Blue (personal favourite)
  • Hush (personal favourite)
  • Doomed
  • A New Man
  • The I in Team
  • Goodbye Iowa
  • This Year’s Girl (personal favourite)
  • Who Are You
  • Superstar (personal favourite)
  • Where the Wild Things Are
  • New Moon Rising
  • The Yoko Factor (personal favourite)
  • Primeval (personal favourite)
  • Restless

When it comes to the cast, the regulars once again give us such beautiful and memorable performances, while the new additions certain shake things up for the recurring cast members.

So let’s start with Sarah Michelle Gellar as Buffy Summers. Buffy this season has a lot to deal with, she has relationship issues, foes new and old trying to kill her, new levels of intimacy with university men, and on top of that she has to be the slayer. It was interesting to see Buffy for all of her knowledge, confidence and power, still being a little naive, powerless and indecisive and I once again have to say that Gellar is the woman of the hour because acts so well. Alyson Hannigan as Willow Rosenberg is simply amazing, this is really big season for Willow as she starts to become more efficient as a witch, we see her heartbroken and then go through an unexpected and radical change with her new friend. Hannigan is such a great actress as she happens to be cute, pretty, witty, smart and mysterious all at the same and that is quite a feat and Willow as a character was just someone I wanted to hug all the time. Nicholas Brendon is once again so cool as Xander Harris, this season really puts Xander in an odd position as he happens to the only non-university student and doesn’t seem to be going anyway with his life besides his odd jobs and his strange relationship with Anya. However the guy is still full of some of the best one-liners, is still funny and seeing him around just makes me smile.

buffy-riley

Oh and Anthony Stewart Head as Rupert Giles, a frigging legend. I think I’m in love. I mean I’ve always liked Giles, the guy is English, has a dry sense of humour and is very strict and dull as a character, but since becoming unemployed this guy has become a hell of a lot more interesting. Seeing Giles in a more casual manner makes for some interesting moments like Giles in a sombrero or Giles with a chainsaw or SEEING GILES BLOODY SINGING AND PLAYING GUITAR! I swear seeing that just changed my world and made Giles and Anthony Stewart Head as an actor like the best person ever. Emma Caulfield returns as Anya but in a more substantial role than before, now she’s sort of part of the Scooby gang and while she’s a little eccentric and does not know anything about subtly when it comes to voicing her opinions, however she has a good heart and having her in a relationship with Xander makes for some really funny moments. James Marsters in this season as Spike, damn what a joy he was to watch. This version of Spike is bad to his old ways, he’s dangerous, manipulative, cunning and funny as hell, but he is also silly, unthreatening and surprisingly docile when in an unfavourable situation. Marsters again remains to be the voice of reason, has great lines of dialogue and because his new situations, his constant interaction with the Scooby gang is just the best thing ever.

willowandoz spike

And then there’s Marc Blucas as Riley Finn, over the course of the season I got to like him more (especially when he meets Angel), but overall I’m not overly fussed about his character. I know he’s just an average joe by day/military guy by night, but as a character he was never that engaging to me and just doesn’t fit into my view of the show. Amber Benson as Tara Maclay was definitely the most unexpected and interesting flavour to be added to this new cast, she’s incredibly shy, a bit of a recluse and no one really sees her, that is until Willow comes into play and she opens up a lot more. Benson does a great job of being super shy, vulnerable and adorable all at the same time. Lindsay Crouse  was as Maggie Walsh but I never liked her from the moment I saw her and as for George Hertzberg as Adam, I say well done him, he was like the Terminator mixed in with Frankenstein, but with the intelligence and humour of a smart human. Adam is a little unconventional when it comes to be a villain as he wasn’t as clearly evil as all who came before him, I mean he was still bad, but in more casual manner. Kristine Sutherland was once again good as Joyce Summers, however she didn’t stand out that much considering everything that happened in this series took place further Buffy’s old home. After not seeing him for a while, the return of David Boreanaz as Angel was awesome, his moody yet cool persona is still fun to watch and I liked his complicated interactions with Buffy. Seeing Eliza Dushku as Faith brought warm feelings to my heart, for a while I wasn’t sure if the show would acknowledge her existence again, but they did and Dushku came back swinging in all of her fiery hotness and I liked having this girl back the picture even if it were for a short time. And finally the appearance of Danny Strong as Jonathan Levinson was like the best unexpected of this season, I almost didn’t recognize him in the episode he was featured in because he’d changed so much, but damn I have to give props to Strong, he killed it in his one-off episodes.

Giles!

So to conclude season 4 of Buffy the Vampire Slayer is bloody good season and is possibly my favourite season so far. Removing Buffy and company from their usual high school hijinks and placing them in college adds a great sense of the Scooby gang and with faces new and old showing up, new revelations taking place in Sunnydale and with stories full of bizarre, hilarious and emotional elements thrown in throughout, I was left thoroughly entertained and emotionally invested.

Rating: 9/10

 
6 Comments

Posted by on December 27, 2014 in Media, Reviews, Television, TV Reviews

 

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

How I Feel In Pictures #7

Good day to you ladies and gents and welcome to the 7th edition of How I Feel In Pictures. In these posts I’ll upload a piece of art that I’ve drawn that basically represents how I feel at that current point in time. I hope you’ve had a great and productive Christmas, today is Boxing Day, I’m bored, so I’m here to give you a blog post of happiness haha. This time we have a few that I’ve bunched together.

Check out my set of pictures below:

Latest Sketches

So here we have some of the art I’ve been working on from October to December.

As you can see above, there are for pictures. from left to right, the first is of Goku in Super Saiyan 3 form from Dragon Ball Z, then there’s Princess Rosalina from Super Mario Galaxy, on the bottom left we have Kirby of Nintendo dressed up as Ichigo Kurosaki from Bleach and finally we have Sonic and Tails from the Sonic the Hedgehog series. If you go from bottom to top you can see that the amount of detail has improved somewhat and while it is looking good so far, I know that my Photoshop skills can get better, that they can improved and become super powerful. All of these pictures I did on my computer, but they’re all based on pen and pencil sketches which you can see below:

Sketch Originals

As you can see above, these are the original pieces of art, some look prettier than others and they were all drawn at different times, on from 2006/7, another from 2010 and two from 2014. I drew all of these with the intention of making them better, more finished-looking pieces of work and now this year I feel like I’ve done it. I have many more sketches that I want to upgrade into digital work which you’ll probably see in near future so kee your eyes peeled.

Thanks for reading and checking out my artwork yo. If you wish to see more of my artwork be sure to head to thehypersonic55.deviantart.com to see more. Until the next time, laters! 😀

 
2 Comments

Posted by on December 26, 2014 in Life, Media, Video Games

 

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Star Trek 3 to Release on July 8, 2016 with Justin Lin to Direct!

Howdy all you jolly people of the internet, time for some new film news and today I’m going to talk about the recent happenings surrounding the next Star Trek film. The following information comes from superherohype:

startrek3-justinlin

Paramount has, according to Deadline, set four-time The Fast and the Furious franchise helmer Justin Lin to direct the upcoming Star Trek 3 (or 13 depending on your point of view). The new arrives nearly three weeks after word first broke that Roberto Orci would not be taking the director’s chair.

Lin’s credits also include his indie debut Better Luck Tomorrow (which he retconned into a The Fast and the Furious prequel of sorts), the Naval drama Annapolis and several key episodes of Dan Harmon’s “Community”. He’ll also be directing the first two episode of “True Detective” season two.

And then there’s this follow-up article also from superherohype:

Following word yesterday that four-time The Fast and the Furious franchise helmer Justin Lin is set to direct the upcoming Star Trek 3 (or 13 depending on your point of view), Paramount Pictures has officially announced a release date of July 8, 2016. 2016, as Trekkies are well aware, marks the 50th anniversary of Gene Roddenberry’s enduring sci-fi franchise.

So we finally have a director and release date for the next Star Trek film, and I, am okay with this. Now firstly let’s talk about the director, Mr. Justin Lin. This guy has good credits, besides breathing life back into the Fast and Furious series, this man as also handled one of my favourite shows, Community and will be working on True Detective as well. The man has talent and he definitely knows his action sequences and can get the adrenaline pumping in the F&F films, now obviously that doesn’t necessarily translate into the Star Trek series, but I can tell that this man will at least give us one hell of a ride when it comes to the action and spectacle. As for the release date, 2016, I’m down with it, looks like I can add another film to my watch list of most anticipated films of that year.

Now I’m a big fan of the recent Star Trek films, the first one in 2009 was one of my favourite films of that year and it was a create reinvention of a then dying franchise and the sequel, Into Darkness was a pretty decent follow-up which at the time I liked very much. Now both of these films have had their fair share of criticism, the first film had people complaining about the heavy use of action, questionable portrayals of original TV characters, the use of a new timeline to justify changing the events of the original cannon and the of course, the lens flares. The sequel also suffered from some of the issues from the first, but also had complaints about the bickering between Spock and Uhura, the lack of advancement in story and characters between the first and second film, the 4-year gap between films, the unnecessary secrecy of the use of the villain Khan, the use of Khan in general and all of the parrells to Star Trek II: Wrath of Khan. I like this new series of films, but I can honestly say that my love for Into Darkness has waned a lot since last year, whereas the first film I still love. I am interested in seeing a fresh set of eyes handling this film series, I just hope that they balance between story, characters and action is done correctly.

 
1 Comment

Posted by on December 23, 2014 in Films, Media

 

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , ,

My Favourite Music In Video Games Part 3

favourite-videogame-music-P3

Howdy ladies and gents, and welcome to PART 3 of My Favourite Music In Video Games, a blog series dedicated to some of my favourite tunes in video games that I feel everyone should hear too. If you haven’t done so already, be sure to check out PART 1 and PART 2 of my music assessments. Today I’m gonna get a little more modern with my music findings today, but still have some blasts from the past as well. So let’s get started:

Phantasy Star

When it comes to the Phantasy Star series I’m not the biggest fan, I actually discovered this series after I played Phantasy Star Online Episode I & II for the GameCube in 2004. It was only after some research when I found out that the series had been since the days of the Sega Master System, Mega Drive/Genesis and Saturn as well as the compilations and remakes on the PlayStation 2. PSO Episode 1 & 2, was my window into the world of Phantasy Star which I loved and then there was PSO Episode 3: CARD Revolution which was very different kind of gaming experience but was still fun. But one thing is for sure, both games had awesome music. PSO Ep. 1 & 2 (the stronger of the two games) has awesome sounds like OPENING THEME ~ The whole new world ~ (Lala Version), the gorgeous For Eternal Glory, Pioneer 2, Mother earth of dishonesty PART 1 & PART 2, Growl, from the depths of the earth, From seeing the rough wave, Codes of Silence, OPENING THEME ~ The whole new world (Episode 2), Silent Palace and A longing to ancient times – PART 2 as some of my favourite examples. Then there’s PSO Ep. 3 with Via Tubus, Tower of Caelum, Scenario – Courage, Tener Sinus -Tener Coast-, Unguis Lapis, Mortis Fons -Fountain of Mortis-, Morgue PART 1 and Code -Deck- to name a few of the best tracks.

Favourite song – Chaotic Bar:

Yes, this is my jam. While I love the opening song for PSO Ep. 1 & 2 and the sound of Code -Deck- from PSO Ep. 3, I that think this is a great song. I don’t even know how to describe what this song sounds like, it is some kind of funky electronic sound and it isn’t overly epic or subtle, it’s one of those sort of songs you chill out with, like jazz in a way. I can’t describe while this song sounds so good, maybe it is because I spent so much time going to the shop in single player, but every time I hear this song, I feel like I’m falling in love and sitting through the summer of 2004 all over again, and that was a good time.

Metal Gear

I’m going to be frank, I have never played a game in the Metal Gear series, well, besides the demo for Metal Gear Solid 3: Snake Eater on 3DS. I have been a gamer who has looked on at this franchise from the sidelines and has appreciated all of its unique qualities in terms of the gameplay, detailed stories, great graphics, in-game cinematics and of course great music. I never came across any of the music in the franchise until Super Smash Bros. Brawl, and it was there where I was introduced to such awesome tunes like Theme of Solid Snake (Metal Gear Solid 2), Yell “Dead Cell” (Metal Gear Solid 2), Calling to the Night (Metal Gear Solid Portable Ops), and the awesome Theme of Tara (Metal Gear MSX2).

Favourite song – Snake Eater (Instrumental):

The first time I heard this song wasn’t in MGS3, but in Super Smash Bros. Brawl and after my first listen I fell in love. True love. Not even a joke. This is a jazzy/classical piece of music that is sophisticated, super stylish and sexy. I know that the original has vocals, but I prefer this version because it is just about the music and my god it sounds so good as it goes from being subtle and mysterious to big, loud and impactful. The thing I immediately noticed about the song was how much it sounded like a James Bond film, you know, that sexy/classy sound from the Sean Connery/Roger Moore days of Bond and then to see that composer Norihiko Hibino actually referenced Bond as influence for this song only makes me smile even more.

Halo

Now we move on to the Halo series, this is another series I’m not a massive fan of. I’ve played Halo 1-3, but that was it because I never really had many friends who were interested in the series after the third game and that’s when I lost interest myself. I think I may have played Halo 4 one time last year, but I can not confirm that at the moment lol. The one thing I can still give the Halo series credit for is the music, the soundtracks in each game have a way of sounding so epic and large in scale, like you’re watching an incredible film that touches you on every emotional level, but it also manly as hell. There are many great sounds from Halo 1, 2 and 3, but the song I’ll always remember is the Main Theme from Halo 1, sure there have been many incarnations of the theme since the first game but this one beats them all. This song is one of the most manly and hardcore themes of any game in the history of existence.

Favourite song – Truth and Reconciliation:

In truth I could have easily picked the Main Theme and that would have been it, however then I came across this song and had to choose it over the main theme because it is longer, more dramatic and in the end it still features the main theme in there so everything works out just fine. The song starts with a soft, subtle and dramatic intro before breaking into the main theme of awesomeness. After a while the song drops into this dark, psychologically creepy sound and eventually picks up in the last minute and a half with the upbeat main theme, so cool.

F-Zero

Ever since the first game in the series on Super Nintendo, the F-Zero series has been home to many memorable tunes that fans have enjoyed since the 90’s. The most classic of these tunes in Mute City, it is the signature song of the franchise in a way and has had several incarnations in F-Zero, F-Zero X, F-Zero GX, Climax and in Super Smash Bros. Melee & Brawl. However F-Zero isn’t just about Mute City, there are a number of other great songs from the series like White Land (SSBB version) and Fire Field (SSBB version). But the best game for music really was F-Zero GX with a rock/techno soundtrack which is bursting with life and energy with some of my favourite tracks including U-Rays, Like A Snake, Big Blue and the brilliant Planet Colors.

Favourite song – Shotgun Kiss (Casino Palace):

This is my jam for life! I swear since I hearing this song in F-Zero GX it changed my life, this is the kind of song that sets my soul on fire. It has a gorgeous rock/jazzy sound with a quick pace and a crazy switch up when it reaches pitch mode. The song gets me in a good mood and makes me feel happy and feel the thrill of racing in F-Zero even when I’m not playing the games, it is that powerful.

Mega Man

Ah the Mega Man franchise. This is a series I’ve always known about, but never really played until 2008/9. In truth I’ve only played three MM games; firstly there was Mega Man Star Force 3: Black Ace, Mega Man 2 and Mega Man & Bass. I think after playing Mega Man 2 I finally understood the importance of the game series from not only a gameplay perspective but from a musical one and the more I explored the main series of games, the more I noticed how much they’ve been in fan-based videos, reviews and covers by people on YouTube. In terms of tunes I like Spark Man Stage from Mega Man 3, but I’m primarily a lover of Mega Man 2‘s soundtrack, call me generic, but you can’t argue with the awesome sounds of Title Music Part 1 & Part 2, Crash Man Stage, Metal Man Stage, Wood Man Stage and Air Man Stage to name a few. And then of course there is the remixes from Super Smash Bros. 4 with Airman Stage Remix, Sparkman Remix and the badass Mega Man 2 Melody.

Favourite song – Dr. Wily Stage Theme:

It was honestly a close call between this and the Mega Man 2 Melody but in the end you can’t beat a classic. Dr. Wily Stage Theme is pretty much the quintessential MM song, it is a classic for a reason. This is the song that gets you in the mood to battle, gets your heart racing and feels your heart and ears with happiness. I was familiar with this song before I even knew that it was from MM2, however when I got to Wily Stage 1 and heard this, I knew I had arrived at the best song in the game. This song just sounds beyond amazing and proves that songs from before the 16-bit era of gaming can still sound badass.

So there you have it, my another five picks. Tell me if you’re familiar, like or dislike my choices in the comments below. Also, if there are any that you’d like to see in the future let me know. Other than that, make sure to come back for some more music madness in the world of video games. Bye bye for now! 😀

 
1 Comment

Posted by on December 20, 2014 in Media, Music, Video Games

 

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , ,

SUPER LATE REVIEW: The Hunger Games: Mockingjay – Part 1

Howdy ladies and gentlemen, time for another film review and this one, this one is important because I’m finally going to talk about The Hunger Games: Mockingjay – Part 1. Now I’ve never been the biggest fan of this film series, but it has grown on me over time especially after Catching Fire, I was meant to see this film within a week of its release, but then work and waiting for my sister to watch it with me delayed my screening for AGES. I mean I saw the third Hobbit film before this and that is just mental to me haha. I knew I had to see this film at some point, so I went to see it after work yesterday and now I’m ready to pass judgement, finally.

mockingjay-p1-post04

The storyline for this film is as follows:

“The story continues to follow Katniss Everdeen; having twice survived the Hunger Games, Katniss finds herself in District 13. Under the leadership of President Coin and the advice of her trusted friends, Katniss reluctantly becomes the symbol of a mass rebellion against the Capitol and fights to save Peeta and a nation moved by her courage.”

I thought the story was pretty great, it was a very different kind of film when compared to the previous two. There is no Hunger Games, so now we have what could only be described as Capitol vs. the districts of Panem. Here we have President Snow, a man determined to keep the districts in order and take out anyone looking to start a rebellion and on the other side there is Katniss, the symbol of hope to the districts and the one who is willing to do anything to get justice. This is a film about power, who has it and how is it handled. There is drama, deep emotions, and crazy mind games being played. If I had to fault the story I would say that it felt a bit slow at times, but otherwise it’s fine.

hg-mockingjay-part1-img06

As for cast they were all very good. Firstly Jennifer Lawrence is still killing it as Katniss Everdeen, I think this is the role where we can see the most from Lawrence in terms of acting. In this film Katniss is a scarred and fragile individual, she is haunted by her past, longs for Peeta’s return and has to find the strength to be the face of the uprising against the Capitol . The woman has to deal with so much and Lawrence’s performance is stellar and nothing short of amazing. Liam Hemsworth was cool as Gale Hawthorne, this character has always been sidelined and has never had that much to do in these films, but Gale’s presence has risen since the first film and he’s right in the center of the action this time around and I was happy with that. Philip Seymour Hoffman as Plutarch Heavensbee was great, it was odd seeing Hoffman acting knowing that he’s passed on, but I think it made me love him more. Heavensbee is smart and knows how to make things work in his favour, he is also very funny and confident. Also Julianne Moore as Alma Coin was good too, she is a woman ready to start the rebellion and unite the districts, however she wants to handle it properly and has the right tools at her disposal.

hg-mockingjay-part1-img03 hg-mockingjay-part1-03

Josh Hutcherson as Peeta Mellark was good, this time he was after seemingly being dead, the man arose and starts to talk in defence of the Capitol and is asking Katniss and the people of the districts to start down. Hutcherson plays a different kind of character this time round, but it definitely makes him a much more interesting person. Donald Sutherland as President Snow, what a beast. Snow’s always been a douche, a clear villain who never liked Katniss and the courage that came with personality and since the last film he has gone to great lengths to break the spirit of not only Katniss but also the people of Panem. The man is ruthless, calculated and a lot sorts of mean and Sutherland is just perfect in this role, I loved his performance. Elizabeth Banks was lovely as Effie Trinkett, she has such a wonderful energy and persona that makes her fun to watch whenever she’s on-screen. Natalie Dormer was good as Cressida, I was surprised about Dormer’s role in this film as it wasn’t what I expected, however I thought she was fine. Woody Harrelson still does a good job as Haymitch Abernathy even though he was in the film a lot less than before. Sam Claflin as Finnick Odair is good too, while Stanley Tucci did a good job as Caesar Flickerman, I just wish there was more of him.

hg-mockingjay-part1-09

When it comes to the presentation it is pretty good. Visually the film looked good with nice cinematography, a dark colour scheme and detailed CGI, and the action, even though it was in a smaller amount, was cool when it showed up. Also James Newton Howard’s soundtrack is very nice and really comes into play when the emotional moments come into play.

hg-mockingjay-part1-pic06

In conclusion The Hunger Games: Mockingjay – Part 1 is a good film, in fact I would say it is a great film. There isn’t that much action and the pacing felt a bit slow at times, however this film makes up for that with its intriguing plot elements and great performances from the cast involved. I can now say that I’m excited to see how this film ends next year.

Rating: 7/10

So what did you think of The Hunger Games: Mockingjay – Part 1? And how do you feel it compares to the last two films? Whatever your thoughts, drop them below and I’ll see ya on the next review yo! 😀

 
2 Comments

Posted by on December 19, 2014 in Film Reviews, Films, Media, Reviews

 

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

J.K. Simmons Joins Kong: Skull Island, Set For 2017 Release

Yo yo people of the internet, time for some film news. Recently there has been some news about the upcoming King Kong reboot film and I thought I should talk about it. The following information comes from superherohype:

jk_simmons-kong_skullisland

On Friday, we learned that Legendary Pictures had shifted the release date for their upcoming film Kong: Skull Island from November of 2016 to spring 2017, and now Deadline brings word that actor J.K. Simmons has signed on to appear in the film. A fan-favorite to genre fans for his role as J. Jonah Jameson in the “Spider-Man” films, Simmons can currently be seen in the film Whiplash and will appear in Terminator Genisys next summer.

Simmons joins a cast that thus far only includes another comic book movies veteran, Tom Hiddleston. Directed by Jordan Vogt-Roberts (The Kings of Summer) and written by John Gatins (Flight) and Max Borenstein (Godzilla), Kong: Skull Island will fully immerse audiences in the mysterious and dangerous home of the king of the apes as a team of explorers ventures deep inside the treacherous, primordial island. Legendary’s story honors the foundations of existing King Kong lore, but places it in an entirely new, distinct timeline.

Thomas Tull and Jon Jashni will produce and Alex Garcia will executive produce. The film will be released in 3D and IMAX 3D by Universal Pictures on March 10, 2017.

 So there is three things I have taken away from this recent film news:

  1. ‘Skull Island’ has now become ‘Kong: Skull Island’ (probably just to better associate itself with King Kong himself)
  2. The film has moved from 2016 to 2017 but only by around four months
  3. J.K. Simmons has joined the film’s cast

I think the biggest news worth talking about is the involvement of J. K. Simmons. Simmons is one of my favourite actors to see in films, even if he isn’t part of the main cast, it is alway nice to see his face. If you ever want someone some good talent for your film, Simmons is always a good choice. It will be interesting to see what he brings to both this and Terminator Genisys. I actually forgot that Tom Hiddleston was attached to this film until I read the article, but since there has been such a gap between casting it is easy to forget. But it is nice to know that we have two very talented actors in this film. I’ll be interested to see what other news comes out for this film in the coming months, 2017 seems so far away but it looks like it’ll be great year for films. 🙂

 
Leave a comment

Posted by on December 15, 2014 in Films, Media

 

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Revisiting The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword

Good day to you ladies and gents, and welcome to this blog post. This year has been a good time for video games, I have played a fair amount including Fire Emblem: Awakening, the brilliant Super Smash Bros. 3DS, and starting over with StreamWorld Dig, Mutant Mudds and Kid Icarus: Uprising. Obviously, they are primarily 3DS games, but that’s been my main gaming console for the year and other games I’ve played have been via my friends at uni. I haven’t been able to play many new games because I’m still low on funds (as usual), so I’ve been going backwards in time for my gaming and over the last three weeks I’ve gone back to one of my favourite games from 2011; The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword.

1512403

Ah Skyward Sword, we’ve had a strange history we have. It is game I love but have only played it for a short time when compared to some of my favourite games. Now I’m going to talk about my experience with this game, so consider this a semi review of sorts. 🙂

My History

RVL_ZeldaSS_08ss09_E3

Since E3 2010 I had been looking forward to playing this game, and after playing a demo at the MCM London Expo in October 2011, I was really intrigued to play more of this game with the new motion controls. So I got the game on the day of release and pretty much played it for weeks afterward. You see Skyward Sword was not only one of my most engrossing gaming experiences in a long time but it was also one of the most in-depth Zelda experiences I have had too. After 2009 my interest in gaming started to dip a fair amount, I think it may have been because I was just gaming on my Nintendo Wii or maybe it was because I started getting into watching films in the cinema, whatever it was, by the time 2010 came around I wasn’t that fussed. So in 2011 Sonic Generations was my first super happy time gaming again and then Skyward Sword just exceeded that. I fell in love with that Zelda game because for the longest time I have played many games in the series since Ocarina of Time, however Wind Waker was the first proper Zelda game I got into and played for a long time, but Skyward Sword is the first Zelda game I actually engaged with and felt like completing (besides Four Swords Adventure). I played the game almost everyday after I bought it and got around just over halfway through the game, however, after I went home for Christmas and had to leave the Wii back at home when I went to uni in 2012, I pretty much lost my groove and couldn’t get into the game again, so I left the game and never played it again, until this year.

Revisiting The Game

the-legend-of-zelda-skyward-sword-screenshot-ghirahim

So after THREE YEARS, and being very curious about the game, I decided to start over from the beginning on a separate file and my god, I felt the love all over again. I started playing the game and remembered the feeling wonder, surprise and fun that comes with starting a new game, however a lot of the criticisms of game that I’ve heard from certain fans have definitely become apparent. Criticisms of the game ar as follows:

  • The beginning of the game is still fun, but the amount of tutorials and talking at the start of the game was quite frustrating, tedious and unnecessary. It didn’t spoil my experience, however I’m not sure how I was so patient with it before.
  • Sometimes the controls can be a bit fiddly, because the game relies heavily on motion controls. Sometimes it is hard to make precise hits or movements even with Wii Motion Plus. Also sometimes the amount of motion controls in the game feels unneeded and could have easily been done with buttons instead.
  • That stamina meter, while it is great for running and climbing quicker, at the same time it can be very annoying when doing regular tasks like running, climbing, attacking, moving objects, etc. It is very tedious and can be very inconvenient when you run out of juice while in the middle of battle or moving over quicksand.

Besides the issues listed above, it is still hella fun. Jumping back into the game after so long made it feel like a new experience, however it was great to remember all of the things that I liked about the game when I first played it and that shows that the game definitely has replay value.

The Reason I Like It

Stalfos_Battling_(Skyward_Sword)

While Skyward Sword has a bit of mixed reception within the Zelda community, it is definitely regarded as one of the better games in the series, and for me personally I REALLY like this game. The story is pretty interesting too, Link is a great protagonist and seeing him and Zelda in a romantic relationship is different but quite interesting, I also love Ghirahim as the antagonist, he’s such a creepy/insane badass. I also love seeing everything all the foreshadowing that will come into play with the other games in the Zelda timeline. The visuals have a nice blend of watercolour paintings mixed in with the cel-shaded style of Wind Waker and realistic style of Twilight Princess and it gives off this very bright, vivid and charismatic type of game which is charming and pleasant to look at. And then there is the soundtrack which is gorgeous! The orchestral sound is heavenly and adds a lot to the gameplay when travelling and battling, the best songs being “Ballad of the Goddess“, “Ghirahim Battle“, “The Sky” and “Separation” to name a few. In addition to that, gameplay-wise, having the ability to run fast in a Zelda game (without the use of the Pegasus Boots) is a BIG deal and I LOVE it, I just like running all over the place. In addition to that flying on the Loftwing in the sky is one of my favourite experiences in the series, and I prefer it to riding Epona and possibly a bit more than the boat in Wind Waker. I also like the combat and the way it gives you full-on control and satisfaction when you kill your enemies. Foes you meet in the main worlds are fun to take out, I love fights with the Stalfos and Ghirahim, and some of the boss battles are epic and cinematic. And finally I like the way you get to interact with NPCs, have different choices with responses and deal with side missions and gear upgrading similar to Monster Hunter.

Conclusion

link the legend of zelda the legend of zelda skyward sword 1440x900 wallpaper_www.wallfox_net_13

In conclusion The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword, I still love this game. Some aspects of the game are a bit tedious, however I still love it. The gameplay is fun and exciting, the visuals are beautiful and the music is incredible, and playing through the game the second time is super fun and I haven’t felt this kind of fun since A Link Between Worlds last year and I can’t wait to finally finish this game. If you haven’t experienced the game yet I would recommend it, it’s a good time.

So have you played The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword, and if so what do you think of it? Do you love it, hate it or feel indifferent? And how do you think it compares to the other Zelda games? Be sure to leave your thoughts in the comments below.

 
2 Comments

Posted by on December 14, 2014 in Game Reviews, Life, Media, Reviews, Video Games

 

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

 
%d bloggers like this: