Posts from June 2011

2
Jun 11

Film 2Oh!!: EXTREME!!!

Do You See + FT1 comment • 965 views

23. Robogeisha (DVD)

Yesterday I filled in a questionnaire about Extreme Asian cinema which wanted to know why I might watch something that may be filed under “Asian Extreme” cinema. It was quite a thorough questionnaire, trying to pinpoint what I thought the appeal of such cinema was, as well as probing my definitions of it. I get a sense that it is trying to repeal some BBFC decisions, but its interesting area of research (though how truthful its answers will be may be unclear). If you are interested in the questionnaire it is here:
http://www.asianextremecinemaresearch.co.uk/

Anyway the point is I don’t watch an awful lot of what I might consider Asian Extreme cinema. That said I see plenty of Asian films which tiptoe into this area, and certainly in the J-Horror period saw some quite nasty stuff (fish-hooks in the fanny movie The Isle being an obvious example). I am particularly queasy about sexual violence and extreme body horror, but I do try not to self censor too much if a film seems worthwhile (Audition was tough but rewarding for example). But on the other side I do have a bit of an interest in schlocky gore horror, and just genre trash movies. Hence renting Robogeisha – from the man who bought us Machine Girl. Robogeisha has a mix of gore, splatter effects, ridiculous body horror and odd stabs at eroticism that is as enjoyable as you want it to be. I probably took it at the level of an X-rated Power Rangers episode, replete with ejaculating demons and some truly poor effects. And yet it cutely goes all the way to try and string together a coherent plot, its not just happy with Cyborg Geisha / gore / sex. Though it is quite happy with that.

»
More

1
Jun 11

Film 2Oh!!: That Feminine: Mystique

Do You See2 comments • 485 views

22: X-Men: First Class (cinema)

A film like X-Men: First Class is pretty hard to review. I thoroughly enjoyed it in a way I haven’t enjoyed an X-Men film since X2, which is to say that its an intelligent action movie for stupid people. These being the only team superhero films on the block at the moment, they manage to have issues about pacing, the amount of plot and characterisation that needs to be stuffed in and multiple simultaneous action sequences. To his credit Matthew Vaughn handles all of this pretty well and churns out a clever flick which almost rehabilitates the idea of a prequel. At least here the key sense is if being slavish to continuity spoils your story, then always go with the story. Which is exactly how it should be in every medium.

What interests me the most about the X-Men films is, once minted, how they have had a life of their own, and thus how they have mutated. Certain choices in the initial film begat continuity issues later on. So X-Men: First Class has a pretty different actual first class to the comic X-Men: First Class, many of whose first class were in the class in the first film. (I hope that made no sense). Dramatic arcs for the first were lifted from the comics, but also expanded upon – the Wolverine, Jean Grey, Cyclops lover triangle has significantly more importance in the films. And some characters, almost throwaway henchmen like Mystique, took on a life of their own.

»
More