This one looks like it will be fun! The trailer from Skyline, the first kick-ass invasion film since Independence Day. It hits the big screen this Friday, and I will be in the theater early that day.
One of the most unique movies of the year hits the DVD stands this Tuesday: Scott Pilgrim vs. the World. I haven’t seen a movie that brought in its comic book origins that blatantly and still made me love every minute in a long, long time. On top of that it mixed the Gamer aspects of the graphic novel in ways I hadn’t seen before, and that many of the games turned into movies could have benefited from. If, that is, they had someone with the skill set of Edgar Wright running the productions. The cast brought their A-game to the party, the music was world class, the camera work was spot on. The film may not have done major box office business, earning $45 Million worldwide when it cost $60 million to make, but I intend to do my bit to help them break even by picking up the DVD, because we need more films like this.
There are a few independent films worth noting this week: The Last Vampire on Earth and Zombie Girl the documentary are not major films, but you might just find them each a refreshing change of pace in its own way. And a classic live action film from Tokyo this week, Shinsengumi Chronicles – I Want To Die A Samurai!, is also being released.
Taking the top spot for my personal Must Have list of TV program box sets this week is Doctor Who: The Complete 5th Season. Matt Smith and Karen Gillan have definitely made the Doctor and Companion rolls their own, which seriously surprised me. MY Doctor was Tom Baker. But then David Tennant blew me away, with his perfect Doctor incarnation; I figure that was going to be the last and best Doctor ever, and indeed he might still be. But Matt and Karen have not been the anti-climax I was expecting after David, and I have to attribute some noticeable portion of that to having Steven Moffat at the helm.
Interestingly enough, the other TV DVD box set coming out this week is also from both the BBC and Steven Moffat: Sherlock: Season One. Steve brings a whole new twist to the classic series of tales, just as he did with Jekyll.
A documentary holds the border between live action and anime this week: Secret Origin: The Story of DC Comics. It touches on 75 years of comic book history with a large number of the current big names in the business contributing to the project. Or perhaps it should be Detroit Metal City, a live action film about a skizo rocker (j-pop by inclination, death metal by occupation) who fights himself every step of the way that is SOOOO close to being an anime.
In Anime, Xam’d: Lost Memories – Collection 2 definitely gets my vote as the video to beat this week. It has great animation, a quality storyline, first class voice work (with either cast), and a soundtrack that includes the Boom Boom Satellites; what’s not to like? The other major release this week is also a good one; Tsubasa: Season 2 takes us back on the search for the missing feathers, or in alternate realities the missing memories, of Sakura. Yuuko is the one who shows them the path through the multiverse they might want to explore, but leaves the decisions to them, much as she did/is doing for XXXholic. When your story skips around through time, space, and parallel dimensions, your tenses and syntax can become a bit strained.
Finally, one classic gets re-released in a more affordable package: Comic Party Revolution – The Complete Series [S.A.V.E. Edition] comes in at under $20 for the whole season, for your dojin and cosplay entertainment. What gives this one a bit of added spice is the fact it is one of the about us otaku kind of shows, being all about a group of people that get together to put out their own manga.
There are no real genre movies coming out this week, but Flickan som lekte med elden (The Girl Who Played with Fire) brings part two of the trilogy that began with The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo home. This Swedish series about an investigative reporter and a girl genius hacker is very much edge of your seat thriller to the core, so much so that even if you have to read subtitles it won’t slow down the movie. The third film, The Girl Who Kicked The Hornets Nest, is hitting the theaters on this Friday, October 29th.
For TV, they are finally releasing War of the Worlds: The Final Season, as well as the complete series in one box set, since it only ran two seasons. This was Adrian Paul’s last Sci-Fi TV roll before he became the Highlander. Someone is re-releasing the surviving episodes of Captain Video And His Video Rangers, America’s first Sci-Fi TV show. It ran live on the DuMont Network for half an hour every night from 1949 to 1954. If you don’t remember, Allen B. DuMont invented the cathode ray tube (also called the Picture Tube) in 1932, the Oscillograph (later called the Oscilloscope) in 1933, and Radar in 1934 (the US military asked him not to patent it so they could keep it secret). But he is best known as the inventor of the Television, and his company was selling the TV sets he invented beginning in 1938, with his TV Network going live in 1946.
Bridging the gap between TV and Anime, the American animation series Star Wars The Clone Wars: The Complete Season Two also hits the shelves this week. What I find much more exciting is the fact that Lucasfilm Animation is looking into doing a new animated series with direct creative involvement from Seth Green and Matthew Senreich.
In Anime, Birdy is back with all new adventures in Birdy the Mighty: Decode. Birdy is an interstellar agent with one minor flaw; she is more dangerous to innocent bystanders than the bad guys she pursues, and has been known to take out an entire planet while trying to stop one evildoer. This is part one of the new series, with part two coming out around Thanksgiving. You can watch the first episode online to give you an idea of what the series is like.
In the finest tradition of the Girls with Guns sub-genre, Canaan – Complete Collection takes place after biochemical attacks become common usage, and some assassins have synesthesia, giving them a distinct edge. If you liked Noir, you will love this series. Also in combat mode, Queen’s Blade: The Exiled Virgin – Complete Series takes place in a world where the Queen is chosen by being the last woman standing at the end of a series of battles. All contests are magically transmitted to crystal spheres for the entertainment of the populace. I don’t think either one of these places sounds like somewhere I would want to live, but the shows themselves are fun to watch.
Pandora Hearts part 1 seems to be a twisted variation on Alice in Wonderland meets the Count of Monte Cristo. For his birthday present they put him in a dungeon, with no explanations and no obvious way out. And Fullmetal Alchemist: The Complete Second Season (Viridian Collection) also becomes available, bringing still more world class timeline jumping steampunk into our hands at a more reasonable price.
Also out this week, Naruto Shippuden: Box Set 4 continues the ninja adventure (although there is some evidence it came out last week, since I already saw it on the shelves), while Hetalia: Season Two continues the rather silly story of WWII nations as schoolchildren. This program could actually be used as a teaching tool for that period of history, not because it is particularly accurate, but because it might catch a child’s attention and make them curious. Every teacher I know considers that the most difficult step in the education process, because once they are interested they seek out new knowledge on their own.
Just saw almost this trailer in the theater before RED yesterday, with a small dialog difference that gave a bit more of the back story to the big screen version. The movie itself will be out on February 11th, and based on the trailer it might just be worth checking out. If you haven’t seen RED yet, you should head for your local presentation today; it was even better than the trailer and the buzz made it out to be.
There aren’t any US Sci-Fi or Fantasy movies coming out this weekend, but there is a Bollywood film that will hit the screens this week or next: It’s a Wonderful Afterlife, about an Indian mother who takes her obsession with marriage into the serial killer zone. This one is a romantic comedy horror movie, another genre mix you don’t see too often from India, although there are a lot of them from Japan. When you combine that with Robot which hit the big screen this past Friday and Action Replay coming out on November 5th, this is a great month for Bollywood Sci-Fi.
There is another movie that looks like fun this weekend; Nowhere Boy is the story of John Lennon as a teenager, and what drove him into music. The official web site is in the UK, so the release date mentioned on the page is the UK release, with the US release only coming now. I also need to let you know that the Avengers web site has gone live!
This one looks like it will be fun! The new trailer from Skyline, the first kick-ass invasion film since Independence Day. It hits the big screen November 12th.