Category Archives: reviews.

monster mash

The ones we got didn't look like these. My Rock Band character wears ones like these. 


the ones we got didn't look like these. my Rock Band character wears ones like these, though.

Did anyone else love this movie when they were a kid?

The recent history of movie theatres in London, Ontario is a sad one.  The New Yorker was slightly before my time, but I hear it spoken fondly of.  I personally had a lot of awkward adolescent first-to-third dates at The Capitol and thought one of the greatest comments on my city was when someone rearranged the marquee message of “Reopening Soon” to RIP when it became quite obvious that the theatre would never be reopening.  

I think it could go without saying that the movie theatre has been in a slow tailspin sine the advents of television, home video, and the internet.   It has affected second-run theatres most as these theatres thrived on the time between theatrical release and home release.  All theatres suffer  movies being downloaded or livestreamed right onto giant home televisions, greatly mimicking the feeling of a plain old movie theatre with more comfortable seating and cheaper snacks.  There, I said it. 

Today I went to see Monsters vs. Aliens in 3D and have decided that after I have my own counter-culture fashion and lifestyle media empire, successfully operate an organic automat cafeteria/diner, and live in an off-the-grid self-sustaining farm, I will be opening an experience theatre.  

The movie was amusing and delightful.  It had interesting ‘monsterous other’ and empowering themes as well as tolerable humour and adorable characters.  But the real star was the 3D animation.  It scared me every time.  It made the movie experience so enjoyable and positively worth the money even though I wasn’t able to use my coupon on 3D movies.  I was reminded of  a documentary I watched in grade nine science on experiential movie theatres in the 50s, including buzzing seats and scratch n’ sniff movies and now I’m convinced it all needs to make a comeback.  

I was worried about the theatre I went to because recently there has been no one there when I’ve gone, except for huge blockbuster opening nights, of course: it is built with a large capacity in mind but I haven’t seen it fully functioning since it opened about a decade ago.  It’s obviously either ill-thought out over consumption, like a big box theatre, or is victim to (un)foreseeable trending.  They did, however, advertise several 3D movies before the feature which may tell of a renewed theatre experience.

The 3D glasses themselves were satisfyingly Buddy Holly-like, and while they can’t be used as sunglasses and aren’t red and blue lensed, I do plan to hold onto mine to use them when I go to my next 3D movie.  However, in order for it to be extremely successful with me and mine, there will need to be non-cartoons made, which currently doesn’t seem to be the case.

This is currently my most anticipated movie. 

p.s. Would you rather a link for a movie be to the wikipedia or imdb page?


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review of Black Hole by Charles Burns

available several places.  

My friend has the coolest last name on the planet.  But you can never know it for reasons of privacy.  She also has a fabulous graphic novel collection from which I have  borrowed several to read.  

Black Hole by Charles Burns is the second one I’ve picked up.  For those who do not know it and will not click on the link, it is a series from 1995-2005 about teenagers in the 70s getting an STI that causes grotesque mutations. And there are murders. 

The idea seemed fascinating and having flipped through it I felt the art was well-done enough. I was expecting loosely veiled HIV/AIDS  references only to find really loosely veiled vag imagry.  (not at all related vag hating and ethnic stereotypes) I mean, ‘Black Hole’…really?

The mutations are super cool.  And it’s sort-of super cool in the way that Heavy Metal is super cool. But the art is nothing particularly special with poorly executed narration boxes that block  a lot of what could be neat urban landscapes and pretty much miss the point of a graphic novel: the drawings are themselves highly narrative and literal and the addition of the narrative boxes make graphic interpretation redundant.  

Reading it also gave me a headache and made me nauseous, which I attribute to the high relief contrast in black and white and awkward panel reading movement.  This, according to some people, is in turn attributable to me being  a so-called ‘weiner-kid’.  Overall, the art is quite lovely in places but very hard to read.

The plot is a missed chance at character development/making a comment on the modern state of adolescent sexual politics and STIs.  It might be trying to be erotica, but it I would call it hetero-normative, white bread weirdo boy erotica. 

Should definitely be read but is officially not worth a headache.

p.s. poor Bea Arthur, she wasn’t Rufus Wainwright’s grandmother.

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