Category: Film

Dredd

Dredd
Dredd
Dredd

I’m happy enough to admit that whilst I generally did not enjoy the majority of the original Stallone Judge Dredd story I really loved the visuals and some of the epic landscapes in the film.  Everything else was rubbish and after reading about what went wrong you can completely see it up on the screen.  Stallone didn’t know or really get the character and he thought he was supposed to be funny.

That all being said I do not own a copy of Judge Dredd and nor would I consider it.

Dredd on the other hand I do have a copy of and after watching it again for this project I’m reaffirmed to the fact that Karl Urban is Judge Dredd and for the most part this is a pretty bloody good film.  It’s a real shame it didn’t do better at the box office and I’m really excited to hear that they are making a television series and Urban may return as old stony face.

I’m a massive 2000 AD fan from the 90s where I devoured every issue and of course Judge Dredd was such a huge part of that.  He was this amazing character that was so angry but detached and for a teenager the violence in Heavy Metal Dredd was glorious.

As awesome as Dredd the film is though it does lack some of the satirical humour found in the comic, Mega City One isn’t quite so bizarre as the books portrayed it.  There is kind of a hint at it with the homeless man who will debase himself for money and is squashed by the blast doors as Dredd approaches him to kick his arse on the way out.  But the scene is pretty isolated and on its own doesn’t really bring the film up to 2000 AD style writing.

I’m certain this is from the comics but I can’t find a reference for it.

So I really enjoyed watching Dredd again and I think the look and feel for the characters in this are great but I’m sorry to say that this is one blu-ray that is not staying with me.  I just can’t imagine me wanting to watch again anytime soon and I’m sure I can find it streaming somewhere if I do.  So we have the first film to get the cut from the collection, and it’s not even a bad film, it’s a really bloody good one!

This is part of an ongoing series where I examine each movie in my Blu-ray collection to evaluate if I should keep it (I’m attempting to streamline as I feel it’s growing too big again).  Read about the project here.

The original illustration is available on Etsy to buy.  If there is any interest I might bring it out in prints.

You can download and print your own colouring page for free.

Serenity

Serenity illustration featuring River and Mal
Serenity illustration featuring River and Mal
She always did love to dance.

I was a latecomer to Firefly but I was lucky to come to it with almost perfect timing.  I heard vague rumours about the show but for ages I didn’t bother checking it out, I’m not even sure if it actually aired on Australian free to air television, if it did it would have been late at night and I somehow missed it.

So I got a copy of the first two episodes through dubious channels and fell in love with it, immediately, without even realising it.  I bought the DVDs the day after and for the next fourteen nights we watched an episode (novice binge watchers back then). The timing was spot on because barely a month or so on Serenity was released in cinemas.

So it was a real treat to go from watching this amazing show and then jumping straight into the big screen continuation.  That screening was full of browncoats and they were so into it.  It is still one of my favourite shared viewing experiences (I have very few positive shared viewing experiences), we still talk of the guy who gasped so loudly in the aftermath of the Serenity crashing, the whole cinema was silent except for this one guy.  Poor bastard must have have had a heart attack at the next scene.

The soundtrack is beautiful and the film is wonderfully shot with character moments for everyone.  It’s a film that has it’s own problems but none of which particularly concern me.

I still love Serenity, in fact I upgraded it to 4K, I’m not sure I can tell the difference but the film is beautiful in HD and even the special effects still hold up.  So it’s a keeper for me, though I do have to offload the Blu-ray.

This is part of an ongoing series where I examine each movie in my Blu-ray collection to evaluate if I should keep it (I’m attempting to streamline as I feel it’s growing too big again).  Read about the project here.

Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull

Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull
Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull
Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull

I know you’re judging me.

But I can explain why this is in my blu-ray collection.  It’s part of the Indiana Jones set which was cheaper to buy than just the trilogy and I don’t think I’ve even played the disc.  It was on television when we were travelling and I put it on in the background and I didn’t enjoy it!!

Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull is not a good film, it’s not a bad film because of the fridge scene though the CGI gophers do not help.  It’s not even a bad film because of the aliens, though again they do no favours to the film either.

The film just misfires all over the place and there are too many characters who just randomly do stuff.  The film suffers from death by a million nitpicks, the skull has conflicting powers, why are the dudes living in the walls of the temple just waiting for other dudes to come along, the car stunts and of course the infamous vine swinging sequence that even if it were plausible (vines don’t work like that, a fact I read in the Indiana Jones official fan club newsletter when I was like ten) but anyone who has ever seen Ninja Warrior knows that there is no chance he’s going to hang on like that.

The film never feels like anyone has poured their heart into it and it all looks so fake and cheap.  I know it wasn’t cheap but I think when you see it in high definition the mind starts to see stuff that breaks the illusion (actually some of the James Bond films suffer badly in HD).

So there you have it, it would probably be redundant to just get rid of the disc when the case is still there and you never know I might want to do a complete run through… some day.   I would not buy this in 4k on its own.

This is part of a series of illustrations drawn from my blu-ray collection and drawn in ink with a nib pen.

 

Raiders of the Lost Ark

Raiders of the Lost Ark illustration featuring Indiana Jones
Raiders of the Lost Ark illustration featuring Indiana Jones
Raiders of the Lost Ark

Raiders of the Lost Ark is, in my opinion, one of the finest pieces of adventure filmmaking ever produced, if not film in general.  It is beautifully shot, the story is great and the acting is spot on.  Raiders is iconic and most importantly it is a lot of fun without being stupid. Picking a scene was really hard as there are so many to choose from, selfishly I think I chose not to draw thousands of snakes 😉

Actually, this scene stands out as one of my first introductions to graffiti (in a book) that made me really laugh.  Someone wrote a thought bubble on the photo of Indy looking back when he first sees the boulder which says “Oh shit”.  To this day that still makes me chuckle and I think of it whenever I watch the film.*

Raiders is definitely going to be staying in the blu-ray collection and I think when it comes out in 4k I’ll probably make the upgrade (again).

This is part of a series of illustrations drawn from my blu-ray collection and drawn in ink with a nib pen.

*PS – don’t deface library books.

 

Talladega Nights: The Ballad of Ricky Bobby

Talladega Nights: The Ballad of Ricky Bobby
Talladega Nights: The Ballad of Ricky Bobby
Talladega Nights: The Ballad of Ricky Bobby

This is actually the most recent addition to the blu-ray collection so I suspect I’ll hold on to it for a little while longer.  I actually thought I had a copy and went to watch it and discovered that it went in the DVD giveaways.

I have a soft spot for Talladega Nights, there are so many quotable lines in the film and at least two or three of them get used around our house.  For some reason, I latched on to this scene to draw and I kind of regretted it immediately after starting the inking.  Just because I don’t think I captured him in full flight and I think drawing a cougar in the car with him would have been fun.

This is part of a series of illustrations drawn from my blu-ray collection and drawn in ink with a nib pen.

Sketchbook scenes – 2015

Back in 2015 I was looking for inspiration to fill a sketchbook that I had and so I gave myself a task.  Do a search for iconic movie scenes and then pencil and watercolour sketch them in the sketchpad in the order they appeared in Google images.  I resisted telling anyone what the thread was through these sketches, though I hinted that there was one.

Looking back on them I’m actually quite proud of how they came out, those scenes are very clearly from each of those films and if you know the scene you’ll hopefully recognise it.

I believe that there are still some pencil sketches in that sketchpad that I hadn’t painted yet so I might dig it up and see if they are worth finishing.  I might even be tempted to continue on the work (I do need to finish up my He-Man collection though and a number of commission pieces!) as the search results have changed so dramatically in the past two years.

Not sure if I have a favourite, possibly Leon and I think I captured the colour palette of Terminator 2 really well.

What’s your favourite? I’d love to hear!

Hairy Baby – illustration from Big Hero 6

Hairy Baby - illustration from Big Hero 6
Hairy Baby - illustration from Big Hero 6
Hairy Baby – 2016

I really enjoyed Big Hero 6, it was a fun movie and Baymax is the best!  I’ll admit though to never having read the comic or being even aware of it if I’m honest. I did a quick check to see if there is going to be a follow-up film but the news is really sketchy with some articles saying yes to Big Hero 7 and others saying it’s going to be a series on Disney XD.  I am surprised at how successful the film was, I just didn’t think it was that big a hit, but then I don’t keep as close an eye on these things as I once did 🙂 .

If anyone can tell me if there is indeed a sequel coming it would be appreciated!

I’ll check out an Obi-Wan film on one condition

Obi-Wan Kenobi Quote

Ewan McGregor has to play him.

Ewan McGregor’s performance as the younger Obi-Wan Kenobi was one of the few standouts from the Star Wars prequel and the idea of a gritty western style Star Wars film featuring him would be kick arse.

Obi-Wan Kenobi Quote
Watercolours, ink & print – 2017

Rumours came out the other day that Disney is ready to commit to an Obi-Wan spin off film and seriously it seems like a slam dunk to get McGregor involved as he’s stated in the past his willingness to do it.

Go back to its Akira Kurosawa roots and do something gritty and awesome.

It’s no secret I became jaded with the commercialism of Star Wars years ago and nothing they’ve released has really been worthy of elevating itself above that but this has all kinds of potential to it and there’s no real reason for them not to do something interesting – it’s already money in the bank for them.  Slap the logo on oranges and they sell!

So fingers crossed they do it right!