Monday, April 28, 2008

Well, the weekend was really nice, actually, and, as usual, I can't believe it's already over. Friday night Jamie went to some kind of fashion show with Nicole, and Ryan and I went and ate some barbecue and then went to see The Forbidden Kingdom. The Forbidden Kingdom was pretty good, but not awesome. It had some really cool kung fu, including the work of superveterans Jackie Chan and Jet Li (who reprised a couple of their most famous roles, as the drunken master and the silent monk), but it also had a sort of weak plotline involving an American kid who's a kung fu movie junkie and who basically gets bonked on the head and fantasizes his way into ancient, feudal China (the plotline with this kid isn't all that dissimilar, sadly, to the plotline of 1993's The Last Action Hero). Anyway, the movie had some cool martial arts, some interesting special effects, and some genuinely funny moments, so it was enjoyable despite a sort of weak plotline.
Saturday I got up and went to Curra's with Jamie and Ryan for breakfast (which was cool because normally they eat before I get up). I like Curra's. It's one of my favorite places in Austin for breakfast.
After breakfast I took Cassidy down to the spillover at Barton Springs, and Ryan eventually met me down there with Lucy. We had fun in the sun and water, and eventually wore ourselves out (well, it took over an hour of chasing after tennis balls to sort of wear Lucy out).
Saturday night we had dinner with Team Steans plus Matt and Nicole. It was a nice dinner.
Yesterday I got up and rode all the way out to the Lake Creek Alamo Drafthouse for a showing of the original Superman movie (It was some kind of anniversary of the Action Comics issue where Superman 1st appeared. Or something like that.). Needless to say, I went out there with Jamie and Roundball, and as soon as the pre-movie Superman trivia contest started up, it became clear that Roundball's hand was going to be the first hand shooting up on every question. Well, he still won some passes, but I talked him down so that other kids could have a chance to play (and because we could only win passes to the Lake Creek Alamo Drafthouse, which is like at least half an hour away from our house). There was also a costume contest for people dressed up like their favorite superhero, which was sort of cute since we were at the matinee show and lots of kids were in attendance, dressed up like little Supermans and Batmans and whatnot (there was also one adult who showed up in an absolutely awesome Spiderman costume- seriously, he looked like the Toby McGuire Spiderman from the movies). The superman movie was fun, and I realized part way through it that I've actually seen Superman 2 a lot more times than I've seen the first Superman (Gene Hackman's Lex Luthor really makes that first Superman movie pretty entertaining, even for people who aren't huge Superfans).
Then last night we had Mono Ensemble practice. Frank didn't make it, but we played pretty well, even without him. I'm happy to say that Flightless Birds made a reappearance (and that will mean something to about 1% of you). When we were getting ready for the last gig that we played at Club Deville, I think we realized that we have a lot of older songs that we're just not quite comfortable playing at the moment (some of these have been "on the shelf" for quite some time), so we spent part of practice trying to refamiliarize ourselves with some of those songs.
And that was the weekend. Hope you guys enjoyed yours.

Well, I don't have a lot else at the moent, and I sort of need to run, but mayhaps more later.


Anonymous said...

Monday morning poll- Top 5 movies based on comic books/graphic novel:

Here's mine:
1. Batman Begins
2. X-Men I (just saw X-men 3.....ridiculous. Kelsey Grammer??? Come....ON!)
3. Spider Man I (ditto the above, except for SM3)
4. Sin City
5. Road to Perdition

I will (embarrasingly) add that I have never seen Hellboy, and that has been placed on my Netflix list, since G. de Toro is a bad ass. Haven't seen V is For Vendetta either....
And it's been awhile since I've seen any of the Superman franchise.

I finished Watchman. Loved it. Not sure how that will translate to the big screen....although the pictures I have seen look pretty sweet.

J.S. said...

Top 5 Movies based on comics?

1. Blade (the first one- good luck in the big house, Senor Snipes)
2. Spider Man
3. Batman (w/ Jack Nicholson's Joker)
4. V for Vendetta
5. Howard the Duck (or Superman- it's a tough call)

I have high hopes for the new Hellboy movie. I liked the first one okay, but would probably ultimately rank it at a medium. Somehow it just didn't quite live up to its potential. I love the Constantine character from the comics, but then for some reason in the movie they took this incredibly clever, blonde-haired, British character and cast Keanu Reeves to play him? I gotta say that Keanu did better than I would have thought, but he still fell short.

J.S. said...

Ooops. I also like A History of Violence. I forgot that it was made from a comic, but I'm not sure there's room for it on the list, anyway.

The League said...

X-Men 3 was awful thanks to the decision to put Brett "Rush Hour" Ratner in charge of the film. And, yes, Kelsey grammar as Hank McCoy was a poor, poor choice.

1. Superman: The Movie, Superman II, Superman Returns
2. Akira
3. Batman Begins (and Burton's first Batman is okay, but doesn't hold up terribly well in 2008)
4. Spider-Man 1 & 2
5. Flash Gordon

I felt V for Vendetta completely missed the point of the comics, despite occasionally lifting some portions panel by panel. Sin City was a great technical achievement, but felt a bit hollow. And Road to Perdition took a mediocre comic and made a hell of a movie out of it, and for that, I tip my hat.

I also dig The Rocketeer movie (for a PG, kid-friendly flick), and The Shadow, despite its badness.

The trailer for Hellboy II looks like it actually delivers on the promise of Hellboy 1.

J.S. said...

I think it's a bit of an exaggeration to say that V for Vendetta completely missed the point of the comic (I will concede that the book made those points more artfully than the film, with the book making the members of the totalitarian government a lot more believable and even, sadly, likeable). I still liked the movie a lot, although I liked the book even more.

By the way, I don't think you get to pick an animated movie that's made from a comic (or manga). It's cheating somehow. Remove your Akira and pick another flick.

Anonymous said...

I don't a list of my own, because I'm not the most avid comic book-movie genre fan, although I did enjoy X-Men, Spider Man, Sin City, and of course the Superman I when I was a kid (it must be twenty years since I've seen it!) But I have to wonder why 300 wasn't on anyone's list--wasn't that a graphic novel first? And I thought artistically, the movie was pretty amazing. Visually stunning.
Killer Kraber

The League said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
The League said...

I wrote something smart-alecky, and then realized I should have included "American Splendor". If you haven't seen that movie, you should.

That replaces Akira, I guess.

Or I could include "The Phantom", which I made you go see one bleak summer day. Slam Evil!

Anonymous said...

Steans--- Howard the Duck??? !!!Wasn't that one of the worst movies of the '80s??

I liked 300. Probably Number 6 on my list.

Wasn't "From Hell" also based on a graphic novel??? That wasn't bad. I'll have to read the book...

The League said...

Like all Alan Moore adaptations, From Hell botched the nuance of the book.

I highly recommend reading the comic. I know for a fact you'd dig it, Pope.