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Category Archives: Writing

Loss For Thoughtful Music

The news announced November 10, 2016, the passing of another musical entertainment icon, Leonard Cohen. He had a public life in phases. There were the early years, perhaps overlaid by other well-known artists such as Dylan, Simon & Garfunkel, Joni Mitchell or the myriad of other folk / rock crossovers. Later, a new resurgence of popularity came into view. His poetic, contemplative, sometimes darker interpretation, yet romantic music was the backdrop and cover for newer audiences. Over 90 movies featured his songs, such as, Natural Born Killers, Bird On a Wire, Shrek, & Watchmen.

He became known early on for Suzanne, covered by several artists, but one that has been covered by perhaps too many, Hallelujah, which other artists, have become better known. His earlier romantic relationships, including break ups, were often the source of good material.

His own perspective reveals his candid observation of love, living and dying.
I never had the sense that there was an end,” he said in 1992. “That there was a retirement or that there was a jackpot.”

Cohen, in October 2016, in Los Angeles, “I said I was ready to die recently and I think I was exaggerating. I’ve always been into self-dramatization. I intend to live forever.”

Later that evening, he said “I hope we can do this again. I intend to stick around until 120.”

His time was shorter than the century mark. Seldom do we get to hear and are moved by someone with the passion, melody, and prose of a Leonard Cohen. Their music lives on, well past their time.

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Images from BBC


More of Leonard Cohen

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Posted by on 11/11/2016 in Entertainment, Music, Romance, Sound Tracks, Writing

 

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It’s About Time

A movie made thirty-six years ago, still captures the hearts of romantics to this day. A small, independent film was released in 1980, Somewhere In Time.

(Christopher Reeve), as Richard Collier, is a successful playwright who has recently broken up with his girl friend. Now suffering with writer’s block, he decides to take a break. He travels to an isolated getaway, the Grand Hotel on Mackinac Island, Michigan. While walking the halls he notices a photograph of a young woman, that reminds him of a strange incident eight years prior. Richard Collier, a college theatre student in May of 1972, is celebrating the debut of a play he has written. During the celebration, he is approached by an elderly woman (Susan French) who places a pocket watch in his hand and pleads, “Come back to me.” Richard does not recognize the woman, who returns to her own residence and dies soon afterward.

Prompted by yearnings he doesn’t understand, Collier seeks out the assistance of Arthur Biehl (Bill Erwin), an aging bellhop who played in the lobby of the hotel as a boy, while his father worked there in 1910. Richard learns from him, the woman is Elise McKenna (Jane Seymour), a famous early 20th century stage actress. Collier finds out more about her by visiting the home and talking to her housekeeper. He discovers later pictures of her life and that she was the aged woman who gave him the pocket watch eight years earlier.

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Click to hear the Theme

Determined to realize the wishes of this mysterious woman, and finding an author who describes traveling back in time using self-hypnosis, he convinces himself that he’s back in the year 1912. There he seeks to find love with actress Elise McKenna (portrayed by Jane Seymour).This relationship is tenuous, as the two of them realize; Elise’s manager, William Fawcett Robinson (portrayed by Christopher Plummer), wants to put an end to it, because he’s concerned about her career.

There are a few twists and turns in the movie, but it’s really about two people falling in love, under conditions of secrecy, and as we later learn, the difficulty in maintaining control of the illusion when Richard discovers a modern coin in his pocket, thereby yanking him back to present time.

Perhaps the most popular part of the movie was the music. The theme was written by John Barry, a friend of Seymour’s, who wisely took his compensation on soundtrack sales. This was a windfall, as it became one of the most popular soundtracks from the 1980’s. Backing his original score was Rachmaninoff’s “Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini“.

The critics whizzed all over this film, however Universal sold the rights to Cable TV and video tape distribution. That created a strong fan following, and to this day, The Grand Hotel holds annual showings of the movie, which sometimes brings back cast and crew that worked on it. Sadly, Christopher Reeve was paralyzed in an accident in 1995 and passed away in 2004.

I found the film one of my favorite romantic films, second only to the Franco Zeffirelli’s emotionally stirring, Romeo and Juliet (1968). I admit to weeping at the end of both films. The theme to “Somewhere in Time” is as moving as “A Time for Us (Love Theme)” from ‘Romeo and Juliet (1968). This definitely helps set the mood of the film.

The original story encompasses two books, “Somewhere in Time” gives writing credit to Richard Matheson, “Bid Time Return”. Another novel, “Time and Again”, written five years earlier by Jack Finney, uses self-hypnosis as a means to travel back in time but isn’t about romance.

According to Matheson, his story was inspired from a visit to an old opera house where he sees a photo of Maude Adams, an American actress, (November 1, 1872 – July 17, 1953). She achieved her greatest success as the character, Peter Pan. She first played the role in 1905 on the Broadway production of Peter Pan; or, The Boy Who Wouldn’t Grow Up. Adams became the most successful and highest-paid performer of her day, with a yearly income of more than one million dollars during her peak.

Hollywood likes to do remakes, and this is one I wish would be carefully and lovingly redone. I have a preference for the part of Elise McKenna. I believe that role would best be served by Stana Katic. I find her one of the under-rated talents in recent years. She has an ability to bring the audience into any role she plays. Throughout her work in Castle and a short independent black and white film, “For Lovers Only,” shot on a shoe string, she is the essence of romance., Her screen presence is captivating, and from what I read about Maude Adams, a similar facility. As can be seen from these two images over 100 years difference in time, Stana resembles Maude Adams.

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Stana Katic

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Maude Adams

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


 

A bit of movie trivia, William H. Macy and George Wendt have their debut in this film, although I understand Wendt’s moment got lost on the cutting room floor.

 
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Posted by on 19/08/2016 in Entertainment, Fantasy, Movies, Science Fiction, Writing

 

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The Last Hurrah – Castle End

Castle lined up with 12th Precinct detectives

Castle with the 12th Precinct detectives.

Lets start out with a warning to anyone that watches and enjoys the TV show Castle, but hasn’t seen the last episode. Spoiler Alert! Warning! Don’t read past this point if you’re still planning on seeing the last episode and don’t want to know anything about it – including the end.

Now that’s out-of-the-way, I have to assume you want to continue to read my observations & comments. If you’re already a member of WordPress, you can add your comments below. WordPress wants to know who you are, even if you’re hiding behind an alias. No, spies don’t come here to gain access to the latest government secrets, but some Castle fans do…

Castle & Beckett disarming a bomb in NY together

Castle & Beckett disarmed a bomb in NY

Overall, last nights episode did bring some closure to the series. I must say, as a fan I was more than a little disappointed by the abbreviated ending. Clearly the last few seconds of episode 22, season 8, were rushed. It was a way of creating an ending which should have developed in several more episodes of Castle. It appeared to me they had a cliffhanger final in mind, then had to tack on the final seconds showing Beckett, Castle and children, all smiling perhaps even laughing at a dinner table together.

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Beckett & Castle working together

The season 8 writers were up against three intractable challenges. The first problem was the entire eighth season story arc revolved around a powerful shadow organization, secretly behind a prior longer story arc about the death of Kate Beckett’s mother which ran for 6 seasons. By creating this all-encompassing theme from the beginning, it obligated them to continue with it, and form a conclusion for that plot line. What they couldn’t plan on was the second big problem. Problem number two was the announcement by ABC studios, that Stana Katic and Tamala Jones wouldn’t be returning to Castle if there was a ninth season. This meant they had to write an episode explaining to the audience the reason(s) why Kate Beckett and everyone’s favorite Medical Examiner were no longer around. What could they do?

  1. Have Kate Beckett resign and leave Castle?
  2. Have a need for Kate to take time off and temporarily be away from Castle? (They sorta did that already)
  3. Have Kate Beckett appear to die in the last episode, leaving an opening for Castle to continue without her?

Beckett_sticking_her_tongue_outThere just didn’t seem to be a satisfactory way to remove Kate Beckett from the series without severe repercussions and this brings us to the final challenge. The network under a lot of pressure from the fans, announced last Thursday, May 12th, there wouldn’t be a ninth season. Do I believe the fans influenced this decision? Does the Pope reside in the Vatican? The Twitter feeds were tweeting faster and louder than Angry Birds on steroids. They were tweeting, “No Stana – No Castle!“, A petition was created to cancel the show at the end of season 8, and instructions were published throughout social media as to who should be contacted along with their business address.

Shock & Awe - faceFor a few weeks Castle fans were doing the American public a favor. They created a fire storm and were calling attention to a media phenomenon other than the U.S. Presidential bake-off. No need to thank us America, just doing our part to create a distraction from election news.

ABC had a PR nightmare on their hands which might have rolled over to other properties. The only thing at this point which they could have done to make it worse, end season 8 with Kate Beckett killed and have her on the M.E.’s table in season 9. Oh wait… they couldn’t have done that because they were getting rid of  Dr. Lanie Parish too.

If ever script writers were on the horns of a dilemma, this was that time. The writers were given 1 more hour to create an ending for the show wrapping up, LokSat and what happens to Caskett. C’mon, 1 hour?!  Well, that’s what they did. For that hour we had at least 3 episodes compressed into 1.

Beckett: I need a miracle, guys.
Ryan: Okay, you got it.
Esposito: One miracle coming up.

The episodes I’m referring to were; In the Belly of the Beast, Veritas and The Time of Our Lives. Each of them had dramatic stories with pivotal outcome.

  • In the Belly of the Beast – Beckett is recruited for a dangerous undercover operation with the aim of stopping a near-mythical drug baron.
  • Veritas – Beckett carries out an off-the-books investigation attempting to connect drug baron Vulcan Simmons to presidential candidate William Bracken
  • Time of Our Lives – Beckett and Castle marry in the Hamptons.

 

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But it was a Hollywood promise; not worth a damn. ~ Rick Castle

These were the problems in a nutshell, which the writers of this last episode of Castle needed to package together in a satisfactory bundle.

Were they successful? In my opinion, they did about as good of a job as you can ask for in approximately 43 minutes of normal run time. I have to say, I’m happy overall with what they did, but the last-minute of the show was so hurried, I’m not sure if I was looking at a dream sequence, a thought compression for the next set of books, or did they really get the happy ending we thought we saw?

What do you think?

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Some moments we loved during Castle – all rights by owner (not me)

 

How to End a Long Running Series

Well, here we are. The next to the last episode of Castle EPISODE 8×21 HELL TO PAY was broadcast in the U.S. last night.

Beckett_Castle_on_swings_discussing_futureMany fans have already given up on the series when it was announced on April 18th, Stana Katic as Captain Kate Beckett, and Tamala Jones as Medical examiner, Lanie Parish, will not be coming back, should there be a season 9. The official announcement stated it was for budgetary reasons. There have been numerous unofficial rumors which claim co-stars, Nathan Fillion and Stana Katic, have an acrimonious relationship off-screen, making it difficult for them to be on set together.

Whether this is true or not doesn’t take away from the most significant point of the series. Castle was always a fantasy show. The idea that a crime/ mystery fiction writer would have a long-term professional relationship with the NYPD, as a consultant, is in itself a work of fiction. It’s not Jessica Fletcher, in Murder She Wrote, or Sherlock Holmes, but has become more like Hart to Hart or Remington Steele. Each of these comparisons, have their limits, but from the beginning, the Monday night drama, comedy, crime procedural, has and is about the initial meeting, opposites attract, relationship development, and eventual marriage between a female detective and a novelist.

Castle_looking_disgruntledSince it’s public knowledge the Kate Beckett story ends in the last episode of season 8, fans are left to speculate what the ending episode might be. How will they write the story to which millions of devoted fans have been tuning in each week to see, ending their on-screen relationship? Will there be a post-Beckett season 9? Many fans, myself included have looked at season 8 as a less than stellar collection of stories which initially separated Richard Castle from his wife, Captain Beckett, due to some evil drug & murder cartel, called LokSat. The other stories in season 8 have less on-screen together time of the superb ensemble cast, a couple of new roles with new people, with little interaction between Castle and Beckett.

If Nathan Fillion wanted more screen time and less of Stana Katic, according to rumors, his wishes were granted, however at a price. His role has been more of a dolt, an immature simpleton who manages to arrive at reasonable crime solutions, mostly through dumb luck or the able-bodied assistance of his new assistant, Toks Olagundoye as Haley Shipton. Both Toks Olagundoye and Molly Quinn (Alexis), have been taking a lot of heat as fans have taken to Twitter, using it as a platform to vent their anger toward any of the possible season 9 survivors.

The Season 8 finale airing this May 16, is entitled Crossfire in which a twist in Rick and Kate’s final pursuit of LokSat, accordingly “puts their case, and their lives, in jeopardy.”

Now that the hook has been baited, we’ll wait to see what kind of closure they can bring to this much beloved series. No official announcements from ABC indicate their commitment to a season 9, even though some contracts have been signed by the cast. The latest numbers for season 8 episode 21 are up slightly from previous weeks, and I suspect, despite all of the clamor to end the series at 8, and the requests by some to quit watching it, so there won’t be a season 9, the ending season 8 episode will probably be watched by more viewers.

All we can hope, is the last episode of Kate Beckett, will end in dignity. The premise of the show hasn’t been based on one person, it’s been about relationships, the strongest of which was that between NYPD officer Kate Beckett and writer Richard Castle. It’s difficult to conceive how this relationship can end without serious repercussions in the real world. There has been a large informal collective of fans disgruntled with the dismissal of Katic after a disappointingly written season 8. The viewership has declined, many fans attributed that to less screen time between these two actors and the “bogey-man in the corner, LokSat”, which is supposed to bring every season plot point to a dramatic end.

Show runners, Terence Paul Winter and Alexi Hawley haven’t speculated on the renewal or cancellation of Castle for Season 9. According to interviews, they have shot two different endings for season 8 depending on whether ABC renews or cancels the show, determines which of them is broadcast.

Castle_Beckett_posedWill it end with the death of Captain Beckett? Will it end with both Castle & Beckett deciding to take a lengthy vacation, postponed honeymoon together? We shall see, however if there’s a sad ending to this series, I suspect the viewership will drastically fall off and DVD sales of season 8 to be abysmal.

The Castle finale airs Monday, May 16 at 10/9c on ABC.

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Once More Into the Breech…

Not since the time when the MDA fired Jerry Lewis and killed the Labor Day Telethon, have we seen the golden goose so badly drawn & quartered. This is what ABC Television has done to Castle, a much beloved by fans series, now in its eighth season.castle_finale_2

The episodic romance between Richard & Kate, kept people watching Castle. The perpetual watching, waiting, hoping, they will finally understand the chemistry between each other, kept viewers coming back to a clever, well acted dramedy. It took a crisis before Kate realized what was valuable in her life. The relationship needed to progress or they needed to end it. This is exactly where we are today in Season 8.

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By now the relationship, according to the way things were written in Season 7, should be moving toward the expansion of her public reputation, leading to possible political overtures, and maybe their first pregnancy. There was a direction and a place to increase the fan base with this story base-line already in motion. Instead, the wheels came off the chariot, and we’re left with the repetitive story of a secret criminal element, even more powerful than what drove her to find her mother’s killer(s). LokSat, seems almost a code for the writers; we’ve LOCKED our key characters into a GOING NOWHERE PLOT, and sat this one out, leaving the fan base in confusion. This announcement will require some type of drama, which many fans are concerned that it means they will kill off Kate, if there is to be a season 9.

Now, comes the backhand slap announcement before this season ends, to all of the fans of this masterfully created television program. The ABC executives declared, ‘THE SHOW MUST NOT GO ON!’ Too many people were enjoying it for at least the first 7 seasons. We haven’t quite killed it yet, so we’ll eliminate the leading co-star and important support character actors, (Stana & Tamala). The official story is, we’re letting them go, because we can’t afford to keep the most popular people in our show. Please stay tuned however, until we get our collective heads out of our lower alimentary tract and decide if we end ‘Castle’ at season 8, or limp on into season 9, with a modified version of Castle. We may keep some of the actors, but why tell them at this juncture whether they’re going to be included?

You couldn’t write a worse way to destroy a popular TV series. It was hemorrhaging fans during season 8, but now it’s almost as though it’s committing TV suicide. If this is what constitutes thoughtful executive deliberation, than they truly deserve being left with mindless comedies and reality TV entertainment with the resultant loss of a huge segment of viewers.

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Castle on the ABC Television Network. (ABC/Richard Cartwright) Nathan Fillion

Choosing to call the series Castle was in name only. This isn’t Batman & Robin. If anything, Kate is Batman and Rick is Robin. Detective Kate Beckett (now Captain) was not just a co-star, she was integral to the entire premise of the series as was originally described by ABC.

After a serial killer imitates the plots of his novels, successful mystery novelist Richard “Rick” Castle receives permission from the Mayor of New York City to tag along with NYPD homicide detective Kate Beckett, and her investigation team, for research purposes.

This description has been rewritten so as to appear as if her role wasn’t as important as his. This is another huge miscalculation by ABC.

The really clever writing will now be, how to properly write Kate Beckett (Stana Katic & Tamala Jones), out of the end of Season 8, and transition / position for a Season 9.

REFERENCE LINKS

 
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Posted by on 24/04/2016 in Actors, Choice, Comedy, Crime Drama, Entertainment, Humor, Plot, Rom-com, Romance, Stories, Television, Writing

 

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Biting the Hand That Feeds You

STANA KATIC, NATHAN FILLION

The announcement from ABC TV yesterday sent fans of the TV show, Castle, into hyperventilation. The TV crime, drama, romance, comedy series is in it’s 8th season and has enjoyed strong viewership until this season’s challenging plot miscues.

Kate Beckett has been a beloved character on our hit series ‘Castle’ for the past eight years. We are grateful for Stana Katic’s talent and dedication to the series and we hope to continue our relationship,” read a statement from the network. “Tamala Jones has also been an integral part of the series and we are grateful she was a part of ‘Castle.

The start of season 8 created a big stir among loyal fans who strongly objected to the separate on screen presence of either Nathan Fillion (Richard Castle) or Stana Katic (Capt. Kate Beckett). The official explanation is the story developers wanted to shake things up a bit, rather than pursue repetitious patterns. Behind the scenes rumors suggested it was due to the off camera rift between Fillion & Katic, whose only chemistry was on screen.

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** RELEASED STATEMENTS **

In a statement, Stana Katic said: “Rather then distract from what was an amazing experience, I would just like to say that I’m very grateful to ABC for giving me the opportunity to be a part of a much beloved show.”

E Online states –
“Kate Beckett has been a beloved character on our hit series Castle for the past 8 years. We are grateful for Stana Katic’s talent and dedication to the series and we hope to continue our relationship. Tamala Jones has also been an integral part of the series and we are grateful she was a part of Castle,” ABC said in a statement.

Deadline TV –
Nathan Fillion is expected to return as Richard Castle for a shortened ninth season, Deadline reports. Fillion and Katic previously signed one-year contracts for the eighth season. According to Deadline, it was ABC’s decision not to have Katic and Jones return for season nine.

Castle has yet to be renewed, but sagging ratings and contract negotiations made it a long shot for renewal. ABC declined to comment on the prospect of a shorter season since the show has yet to officially be renewed.

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SpoilerTV –
While the studio started making overtures to Fillion for a new deal months ago and has been in on- and off- talks with him since the beginning of the year, I hear Katic was never approached to re-up her contract and was not offered an opportunity to continue on the show. Instead, I hear she, as well as Jones, were informed late last week that for budgetary reasons, they won’t be asked to come back for Season 9.

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Molly Quinn –

Early Tuesday, the actress took to Twitter to lament the departure of Stana Katic as well as fellow co-star Tamala Jones. “Yesterday was a horrible day,” she conceded. “I work[ed] with [Stana and Tamala] for 8 yrs. I love them. I’m heartbroken.”

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Nathan Fillion –

“Stana has been my partner all this time, and I thank her for creating the character of Beckett,” the actor shared in a message posted to Twitter. “I wish her well, and have no doubt she will succeed in everything she pursues. She will be missed.”

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Tamala Jones –

“I’ve had so much fun playing the wonderful and unfiltered ‘Lanie’ over the past eight seasons. I will greatly miss the cast and crew — it’s been a privilege getting to work with this incredibly hard working group of people. Thank you to ABC for this opportunity and to the fans for their unwavering support. It’s been an incredible journey and I can’t wait for what lies ahead!”


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“Castle” stars Nathan Fillion as a mystery novelist who teams up with NYPD homicide detective Kate Beckett, played by Katic, to solve crimes. It premiered in 2009. The show has not yet been renewed for a ninth season.

 


Castle loses its better half

Heloise Appourchaux, TV Blogger

Monday doesn’t taste the same today for the Castle fandom. While the fans were going to enjoy a new episode tonight of the (former) hit-show, the show was a trending topic for a very sad reason….

 
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Posted by on 19/04/2016 in Actors, Choice, Crime Drama, Entertainment, Plot, Rom-com, Television, Writing

 

Batman vs Superman: Dawn of Justice – review

Kal-El-symbolI’m going to start this by explaining about any review you read of a film, don’t take anyone’s word for it. There’s only going to be the slightest hint of spoilage in this review. I’m going to try and explain my opinion without revealing too much detail.

The critics of this latest DC film have been all over it, like vultures on a carcass. Well, I’m not a vulture, and the latest film directed by Zack Snyder, isn’t an old dead carcass. It’s far from that, and if you insist these iconic comic characters must conform to an older style of behavior, you’re going to be disappointed. They may resemble and look vaguely like what you remember from comics or older movies, but as suggested in this movie, this isn’t 1938.

From the moment this film starts, you’re shown images, ever so briefly of a familiar Batman childhood traumatic experience. If you saw the others, dating back to Tim Burton’s film, you know the story. This is there for a reason, and if you’re quick to criticize why it’s included, then you’re missing a larger point. I’ll explain that later. Just know this about this particular film, it’s not your Tim Burton or Christopher Nolan version of Batman. It’s also not your Richard Donner or Bryan Singer Superman movie. This is a movie that stands on it’s own, whether you like it or not, this is a solid story with bold themes and excellent cinematography. What Zack Snyder does with this movie is eschew the chains of past actors and authors. As good as Christopher Reeve was, Henry Cavill has crafted an image which he now owns. He’s not just the red – white – blue boyscout set out for truth, justice, yada-yada-yada.

After those brief introductory moments of a childhood Bruce Wayne, there’s a lot going to happen and you better set down the popcorn, and strap yourself in, because this is not only a fast journey, it’s also intense. Here’s where I really have to give credit to Zack Snyder, because he’s taken a big risk in telling a set of stories, condensed, modified, and brought together to create highly developed imagery backed by an equally intense musical score from Hans Zimmer. I’ve read the criticism, which I shouldn’t have before I saw the film; they say he combined too many story elements. This could also be viewed as part of its strength. Each of the film’s participants contributed in a meaningful way.  It’s not  a Sean Connery 007, it’s more like a Daniel Craig film.

BVS_confrontation_smallZack Snyder wants you to understand this film on several levels. Sure, there’s the obvious titled physical confrontation between Batman and Superman, but he’s introducing us to the idea there’s a lot more to this world than just one or two exceptional people. Batman being the least among equals, possessing no super powers, his role is a subset of the entire movie. An excellent subset I might add, because Ben Affleck nails his dual role.

The introduction of Wonder Woman in this movie, isn’t news to the audience, or a way just to introduce another meta-human. She’s integral to the plot, and if you look at these players, as individuals, not just a timed screen presence, you can see the most interesting aspects of this drama.

Allow me to step back for a writers moment. Just accept this as a way of explaining how well crafted this film is when you look at it in the context of graphic novels (comics). I was one of those youth who read and possessed many of the 1st Marvel Comics dating back to the early 60’s. They were imaginative and drawn in colorful action poses for the era. What attracted myself and many other young people to Marvel at that time, was the introduction of the characters having real personal problems. I’m not talking about acne or dating, they had serious character flaws, and these imperfections showed frailties and a sense of reality for the reader. DC Comics, continued to turn out strong characters, but they were barely two-dimensional. For this reason alone, I think that explains the success of the Batman TV show of the 1960’s. Even young people saw this show as stupid, cartoon characters. I think the creators saw comics as serial nonsense and decided to make fun of it through campy behavior.

For a number of decades afterwards, it seemed no created TV or film could adapt the comics essential fantasy, drama, and core plot lines, without looking plain stupid. Hats off to Richard Donner and Tim Burton for making a strong popular showing, but aside from a lack of today’s technology, they failed to transcend simple child like stories. I think the big break came when Sam Raimi introduced us to his version of Spiderman (2002). That was soon followed by Jon Favreau directing Robert Downey Jr. as Iron Man (2008). Audiences went to these films in vast numbers, and for the most part, the follow up films were successful. Then, almost everyone explained frustration with the 2007 release of Spiderman 3. No longer was there a story with singular continuity of a villain. Now there were several villains, and the biggest faux pas, the brief but silly Peter Parker dance moves. Sony dropped Raimi and after a pause, rebooted that franchise. Frankly I’m more exhausted from the reboots.

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Zack Snyder and company have developed a complex drama, and taking a page out the early Marvel handbook, given us extraordinary insight on how these main characters think. Unlike simpler, earlier, graphic novels brought to film, he’s assuming there’s enough for younger people and the older comic book fan. He’s allowed the writing and fast pace imaging to weave an intelligent story. All people, no matter if they’re “super heroes” or villains have a background story. There’s recognition of the emotional complexity and the trauma of former conflicts for both protagonists. The casualties are real, not brushed away or watered down as if they don’t matter. Any active combat military veteran recognizes they don’t know all the reasons why they’re in the conflict. Each one has their own purpose for their presence in the confrontation. Even their reactions afterwards, aren’t the same. The film helps the viewer see some of that inner turmoil from each persons perspective.

Two people can share the same experience but have an entirely different reaction and memory of the events. Examining the individuals past experience, especially in their formative years, coupled with present time, gives each person a unique perspective. When you know Bruce Wayne suffers from a traumatic & turbulent childhood, Clark Kent comes from a stable Midwestern background, and Diana Prince is a much older and perhaps wiser soul, then the multiple stories coming together shared through each person’s eyes, becomes much more flavorful and interesting.

Speaking of flavorful, I’ve seen a lot of criticism of Lex Luthor as portrayed by Jesse Eisenberg, and frankly I went in with the idea this is going to be another Jim Carey (Ridler) act. Wrong! Why? Once again we’re reminded of Zack Snyders revision of a very well known and established villain. This is somlex_corp_logo_signeone who is intelligent, willing to use that intelligence to intimidate and be disarming. We see the beginning of a young psychopath, with all of the money to back up his quest to humble those he feels have too much power. Oddly enough, in his own twisted mind, he can never acquire too much for himself.  If people insist on wanting a young person to play the same role the way it’s been done before, get over it, this isn’t your grandfather’s Buick.

The final confrontation is through a creation of Lex Luthor, in a last ditch effort to gain the upper hand over Superman and anyone else bold enough to get in his way. This not only creates another conflict, it opens the door to what each of these super heroes begin to realize, there are many battles which lay ahead. This is where we see Wonder Woman in her full regalia, and the theater audience cheered when she joined in. Her back story is of someone much older than either Batman & Superman, and we see snippets of how her experience has taught her to remain in the background, avoid conflict when possible, find a way to cooperate. This is another example of the sophisticated underpinnings infused throughout this film.

I give this film a 9 out of 10 stars, because of it’s sophisticated, multiple complex stories woven well together and a critical examination into the psyche of each of the main players. This isn’t your casual, short attention span film. Watch carefully and enjoy! I know I will have to go back a second time just to see how much more I can pick up from the various things hinted, as well as the main story. wonder_woman_icon.jpg

 
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Posted by on 27/03/2016 in Action, Actors, Aliens, Box Office, Director, Emotional Awareness, Entertainment, Fantasy, Hollywood, Icons, Movies, Plot, Popular Culture, Soundtrack, Stories, Writing

 
 
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