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September 2014
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Something to Do: Movies

There doesn’t seem to be anything exciting coming out this week, but Innocence could be worth watching, if the adventure and fantasy aspects are stronger than the horror. Based on the trailer, I don’t think they are.

Something to Watch: DVDs

In movies we have R.L. Stine’s Mostly Ghostly: Have You Met My Ghoulfriend?, which appears to be a direct-to-DVD release. R. L. Stein has written a lot of fun books, so they stated with a quality property to convert into a movie. Although none of the movies are new I also have to mention the Universal Classic Monsters: Complete 30-Film Collection with films like Dracula, Frankenstein, Bride of Frankenstein, Wolf Man, The Mummy, Invisible Man, Creature from the Black Lagoon, and Phantom of the Opera. They are also breaking them out into sub-collections, so if you just want all of the classic Dracula movies, as an example, you can have them. If your in the mood for some martial arts, 14 Blades stars Donnie Yen as a member of the Ming Dynasty secret police. It has won a number of awards at Asian film festivals, mostly Best Actress for Zhao Wei. If her name sounds familiar, her last pile of awards was for her work in Mulan in 2009.

In TV we get The Originals: Season 1, the spin off from the Vampire Diaries. The CW has definitely been giving Sci-Fi and Fantasy shows a chance, I am particularly a fan of Arrow.

In Anime, Gatchaman Crowds: Complete Collection is about a quite little city that doesn’t notice that it is at war with alien criminals trying to conquer and destroy. They are being protected from the attacks by random citizens wearing super suits that give them amazing powers, and a surprising number of them are high school students. On the other hand, in Blood Lad its no secret that Vampires, Werewolves, zombies, and the Abominable Snowman are all battling for the tittle of Boss. Except for one vampire who watches anime, plays video games, and wants to go to the Human World.

In Fate/kaleid liner Prisma Illya is a magical girl story about a runaway wand who chooses a new human to wield it. Her previous human is none too happy about it, and is out to get the wand back. Hal – The Movie is about a girl who withdraws from the world when her boyfriend dies. To pull her back into it a scientist makes a robotic copy of him, complete with emotions. This one is different, and a bit emotional itself. I should also mention that Baka and Test seasons 1 and 2 are each being released in a S.A.V.E. edition, so you should be able to pick them up for around $20 a season.

DOLL$ BOXX

A few more tracks from DOLL$ BOXX; the first is Karakuri Town, the second is Monopoly, both from last year’s debut album. They have a new music video release this week from their new disc Doll$ Collection that I would include here, but they don’t make it embeddable. You will have to watch it on NicoNico using your free or premium account login.

C’thulhu Fun

They had an H. P. Lovecraft festival this weekend in Second Life, and there were a lot of creatures to see and become. This one towered over the trees.

C'thulhu

C’thulhu the large

Kundo Trailer

This Korean historical epic hits theaters this Friday the 29th, about the Joseon dynasty in 1859, towards the end of its 500 year long reign. Kundo is about a resistance movement that did not appreciate being enslaved by the rulers of that government at that time, and reacted accordingly. The Joseon dynasty was also the source of all the best Cinderella stories for that culture; with a half millennium of events to choose from, there were a few good ones.

Automata trailer

Starring Antonio Banderas and Melonie Griffith, Automata looks to be on the cutting edge of the revolution that might be coming if the world evolves in the AI direction. It has a tip-of-the-hat to Asimov’s 3 Laws, and it is a pretty convincing Turing Test if the robots are more human than the people, after all. It says something interesting about the current state of the film industry that it was written and directed by a Hispanic team, filmed in English in Bulgaria, and will be released on October 10th, 2014, with a world premiere in South Africa.

Something to Do: Movies

The one choice that will be in wide release this week is 1984′s classic Ghostbusters, in a digitally remastered edition although not, sadly, in 3D. That is to celebrate its 30th anniversary. There are a few films worth noting in limited release, like Road to Ninja: Naruto the Movie, an Anime favorite from Japan, and Kundo: Age of the Rampant, a Korean historical epic action film.

Something to Watch: DVDs

In Movies, the animated Legends of Oz: Dorothy’s Return has an amazing voice cast, if the animation and story were crafted with as much care it just might be a winner. While not exactly genre, Age of Uprising: The Legend of Michael Kohlaas is a historical epic, taking place in the 16th century as a man tries to get justice for the illegal acts of a nobleman. Finally, Aftermath is 9 people trapped in a basement as the world is turned into a radioactive wasteland, and it will not be coming home with me.

In TV, Haven: The Complete Fourth Season continues the excellent and strange TV show based on Steven King’s Colorado Kid. Elementary: Season 2 brings more Sherlock Holmes goodness from this side of the Atlantic. From the other side we get the UK interpretation of The Musketeers, in which the new Doctor Who, Peter Capaldi, plays the evil Cardinal Richelieu. Remember the 1999 show Now & Again? In episode one our protagonist is killed by being hit by a train, and wakes up to discover the government has installed his brain in a perfect artificial body. Their goal is to make him a black ops super spy that no-one knows exists; his goal is to return to his wife and daughter, whom he dearly loves. After all this time they are finally releasing its single season to disc. I thought it showed a lot of promise, they should have given it a second season. The Walking Dead releases season 4 this week as well.

In Anime Heaven’s Lost Property Forte was the name they gave season 2, and it is coming out in an Anime Classics edition, meaning you can now pick it up for around $25. I haven’t been able to decide if Watamote is genre because it is fantasy, or just delusional because the protagonist is living in her own little fantasy world. But since she is both a Hikkikomori and an Otaku, I guess that makes her officially part of the genre landscape, and therefore in need of a mention here. It is actually quite an amusing twisted little anime series, in the same way that Welcome To The NHK is, and worth checking out.

Sashida Ikuya

This track is from Sashida Ikuya, who’s style seems to be buried in sappy ballads, but somehow he produced this interesting blend of Jazz and Rock, with the occasional dash of Pop. The song is called Spam, and it is the kind of tune that lodges itself in your head so you find yourself playing it over and over. To bad he can’t crank out a bunch of these; or maybe I just can’t find them with a search. It may be like Godley and Creme, who had an amazing run of killer songs with their bands 10CC and Godley and Creme, but when you search for them you only ever find two songs: I’m Not In Love by 10CC, and Cry by Godley and Creme. Songs like Rubber Bullets and Snack Attack never seem to come up.

New Hero 6 Trailer

Disney’s Big Hero 6 already has me laughing and cheering, and the movie won’t be out for months yet. I have commented on it previously from the perspective of the Marvel property it comes from, a graphic novel/manga of the first order with a lot of links to Japans Pop Culture. And that’s without even going into the whole Pixar/Miyazaki/Disney animation connection. As a single example, did you see Totoro in Toy Story 2, and recognize that high-quality animation universe crossover?