04/11/2021 – Pilot Pains

It’s just how things are these days, that the credits on the Kung Fu revival fade in and make a promise soon to be unfulfilled: “Based on Kung Fu by Ed Spielman.” This new show has nothing to do with the earlier one, which was a western, and the current narrative in television is that Kung Fu has been reclaimed by the Bruce Lee estate, by way of Cinemax’s Warrior. Why go back and reclaim again, in that way we ordinarily do, by only populating a problem canvas with better faces? The whole thing needed restructuring, from the draft phase, and it was already done. It was done. So I guess, well, now time for the next one! Hell, bring on The CW’s Kung Fu, because I don’t need to hear the argument that The Hunger Games is a ripoff of Battle Royale. If The Hunger Games can offer anything new, anything extra or different or special, why argue it shouldn’t exist just to boost your cult film creds? (Battle Royale does not count as “cult”). I’m perfectly willing, even possibly excited, to see the Y.A. version of “martial arts woman,” because I want to see all versions. I want to see a martial arts woman in everything I ever watch — provided she’s treated with respect. Or rather, demands respect — takes it, by the throat. … More 04/11/2021 – Pilot Pains

04/03/2021 – Donovan Was Right!

My introduction to the happy world of podcasts came in the mid-2000s, and it was supplied entirely by iTunes, back when computers were slow enough to mask how poorly iTunes ran on Windows (to this date). Off the very first podcast I ever heard, Slice of Scifi, iTunes would give me the old “You’ll Also Like” tab, which led me to Cinemaslave and then Genrebusters, The Greatest Movie Ever! Podcast and Fast Karate for the Gentleman. The last two are the only ones still active, with Fast Karate having technically released an episode earlier this year. “Active” rings oddly here, because I simply don’t know what happened to everyone else. If you’re a podcaster, either you’re active or you’re…? And that’s upsetting enough that I simply have to believe these people are fine and living their lives. Still, it’s the disappearance of the Genrebusters off the entire Internet that gets me the most. Those guys had such a different vibe, in terms of online discourse, something sort of West Coast but northern. Very laidback, but passionate all the same. I think sometimes we confuse passion for volume, and when I say “we” I mean “I.” Damn it! … More 04/03/2021 – Donovan Was Right!

“Warrior” Couldn’t Be More Relevant in 2021

Just as some believe anti-violence in film can be achieved by sickening the audience with ultraviolence, any cinematic depiction of racism necessarily traffics in the imagery and narratives of racism. And necessary they may be in turn, all the brutal historical dramas which bring atrocities to vivid life beg the question: isn’t there another way? Perhaps there have been or could be movies about racism that forgo such descriptions as “confrontational.” Instead, we could have two strangers from opposite sides of the track building a new and honest relationship with nary a slur slipping out. Sometimes you want that, and that’d be nice. But sometimes, you want to see a racist guy kicked through a wall. … More “Warrior” Couldn’t Be More Relevant in 2021

Masokaiju Tendencies: Those American Godzilla Movies

Godzilla is a metaphor for the atomic bomb in a film from Japan, a country struck with the atomic bomb by America, so when Godzilla shows up in America, how do you want me to take that? Hollywood has a concise answer: “I don’t give a shit.” A seemingly inevitable statement made as consequence of international intertextuality is forfeited upon the altar of I don’t know what. Three American Godzilla movies have been released so far, and I understand this to be a controversial statement, so I apologize in advance, but none of them have been good. Granted, Godzilla movies are usually not good, but this is different. At least, I think it is. … More Masokaiju Tendencies: Those American Godzilla Movies