How Toby Ziegler (Man of Steel) Saved the World

At first, the movie sucked. Then Russell Crowe strutted about in a really tight Kryptonian outfit. Then the movie sucked again. Then Henry Cavill took his shirt off.

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We got to see his muscles straining against an oil rig.

Then, the movie sucked – again. Then Henry Cavill went about shirtless.

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Superman forgiven for stealing some poor people’s clothes because they were Canadian

Then the movie sucked. Then Henry Cavill got a really tight, shiny suit that looked good on him. Then the movie sucked. Then there was a good fight scene. Then there was this cool one-liner during another fight. Then the movie decided to stick with its original plan and suck again. Then they decided that some of the basic things in the Superman mythology were not touchy-feely enough for them. Then Lois Lane said: “It has to go all the way in”.

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Toby Ziegler and Chris Keller saved the world by accident, anonymous source says

Then there were some people in the Metropolis museum enjoying the exhibits while Earth was under a vicious attack centered in Metropolis. Then the authors decided they did not like their decision to make Supermen a brooding dude, and they decided to revert back to the Christopher Reeve (AKA Superman) type of character. But they never changed their mind about making the movie – S.U.C.K.

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It is rumoured that Tom Welling was very pleased with the movie and with the fact he was not cast in it

Jor-El the Fistfighter

They managed to screw up Jor-El’s character pretty bad (can’t do even that properly) by making him into a hands-on brute. Jor-El was, for me, always a mythical character, all brain matter, science and philosophy. Seeing him get into a fight and getting too physical kind of ruined it for me.

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Marlon Brando was reported as being “not happy”

Bad Writing Kills Superman

A sucky movie with a great cast. I had my doubts about Michael Shannon as General Zod. However, once he was given decent lines (three or four in total) he was amazing. Henry Cavill as Superman was really good – has that goody-two-shoes feel about him, despite the fact that the writers seemed to have forgotten about that little fact. Kevin Costner and Diane Lane were a good choice, although I think they could have been put to better use.

Christopher Nolan was seen "laughing maniacally" while writing the script
Christopher Nolan was seen “laughing maniacally” while writing the script

Big Bang Theory – Disproved

Somebody should explain to all those movie makers that the audience is incapable of getting excited by epic visual effects alone – those days are gone, people. We need you to use imagination, storytelling and character development and then, maybe, we’ll appreciate the fact that you’re capable of destroying a city bloc or two.

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The plot is remarkably fragmented, and not in a good way. It looks like a collage – anachronistic fetishism simply does not work, and frankly once I said: „This isn’t Superman, this is Fisherman“ the movie was doomed in my eyes.

Conclusion 1: This movie is a part of the universe in which Vulcan has been destroyed by Eric Bana.

Conclusion 2: Christopher Nolan should be (legally) forbidden to participate in every and all superhero movies.

Conclusion 3: We do not know whether Henry Cavill was a good choice because we don’t know if he is a good Clark Kent.

Conclusion 4: When they decided to fuck up the mythology, they might have considered listening to Edna’s advice – would have helped poor Clark on an occasion or two.

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Japanese Culture (Picture) Post

Finished my first course in Japanese language, so here’s a celebratory post.

Tsukubai 0101140003-1 4846ec3764f3d656307d7b84aa31c31f Hanami tumblr_m948hzWoKU1qh09kzo1_500TSUKUBAI つ くば い Ryōan-ji tsukubai. The kanji written on the surface of the stone are without significance when read alone. If each is read in combination with 口 , which the central bowl is meant to represent, then the characters become 吾, 唯, 足, 知. This is read as “ware, tada taru shiru” and translates literally as “I only know enough” (吾= I, 唯 = merely, 足 = be sufficient, 知 =know).

KOKESHI  こけし Japanese dolls, dated as far as the early 19th century (Edo Period 1600–1868). They were first made in northern Japan and were presumably sold primarily to onsen guests. Traditional kokeshi dolls are particular in their shape and patterns to a certain area, while creative kokeshi developed after World War II allow artists complete freedom.

KIMONO  きもの translates as “thing to wear” and is a broad term identifying garments in general. Nowadays it is associated with the formal silk robe worn on traditional occasions. Kimono differ in style and color depending on the occasion on which it is worn and the age and marital status of the person wearing it.

YUKATA  ゆかた have the same basic design as kimono, but are made from cotton. Yukata have fewer variations than a kimono; the sleeves are never elongated, the collars are never wide or layered, and the patterning is usually repeated and rarely asymmetrical.

HANAMI  はなみ literally flower watching (hana – flower, miru – to watch).

OKOBO おこぼ are wooden sandals worn by maiko (apprentice geisha) during their apprenticeship.

Obon festival  Taiko-drum-image

OBON おぼん is one of the most important Japanese traditions. People believe that their ancestors’ spirits come back to their homes to be reunited with their family during Obon and pray for the spirits.

TAIKO た いこ meaning drum in Japanese. Often associated  with a relatively recent art-form of ensemble taiko drumming. The performances can last between 5 and 25 minutes and typically follow a jo-ha-kyū  structure, which means the performance will speed up significantly towards the grand finale.

Gagaku daruma wagashi calligraphy_master Fushimi Inari

GAGAKU ががく – Japanese court music, the oldest continuous orchestral music in the world today, with a history in Japan of more than 1300 years. The term gagaku itself, which means elegant or ethereal music, refers to a body of music that includes both dance (bugaku) and orchestral music (kangengaku). More here.

DARUMA だるまare dolls which are a representation of the Indian priest Bodhidharma, a sage who is credited with establishing Zen Buddhism in Japan. At New Year time, many Japanese individuals and corporations buy a Daruma doll, make a resolution, and then paint in one of the eyes. If, during the year, they are able to achieve their goal, they paint in the second eye.

WAGASHI わがしWagashi are traditional Japanese confections made of bean paste, rice and fruits that evolved into an art form in the ancient Imperial capital, Kyoto.

SHODOU  しょどう  Japanese calligraphy, or “the way of writing” is widely practiced by people of all ages and all walks of life in Japan. Indeed, all Japanese children have to learn the basics of calligraphy as part of their elementary school education.

FUSHIMI INARI TAISHA ふしみいなりた いしゃ- a Shinto-shrine in Kyoto, famous for its thousands of vermilion torii gates.

First Grave on the Right Review

This book was indirectly recommended to me by Karen Marie Moning and I thought to myself: Why not?

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So here I am some 10 days and 250 pages later thinking it was not such a bad idea to heed Karen’s advice about checking it out. Mind you, First Grave on the Right is not Earth-shattering, perspective-shifting stuff. It’s a fun book with decent writing and a female lead who is not feeble and helpless. I think that all the sex-stuff was completely superfluous and we could have had a really decent book without it, however it’s not the basis of the story nor does it continuously plague every single page – it’s decent. That’s why my rating is 2,5/5 stars, because that’s what decency is.

My decent feelings about this decent book are somewhat made even more decent by the fact that Karen Marie Moning, author of the Fever Series which I adore, recommended it. It was hard not to notice the similarity between MacKayla Lane (Fever Series) and Charley Davidson (Grave Series). The lack of similarity between Jericho Barrons (Fever Series) and Reyes Farrow (Grave Series) didn’t really help. I know originality is to be celebrated, but come on – duplicating Barrons might be impossible but you should have tried Darynda. There in lies the catch. I think she did try, but failed to recreate the awesomeness that is Jericho Barrons.

I’d gotten lost in the comparisons. Time to reflect on the story – it’s shit really. The secret of Reyes is revealed to quickly (Jericho Barrons????), the background story wasn’t much of any interest. So you wonder, how the hell is this book decent? Well it’s just is. It’s your run-of-the-mill book which you may read and have fun with it, but not reading it will not make your life any emptier. I like Charley and I love the style in which the book is written because it perfectly reflects and augments Charley’s character. It’s just a fun book which did not try to kill me with its illiteracy and dodgy metaphors. So yeah, it’s decent and I’m off to read pt2.

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Ender Wiggin isn’t a killer. He just wins – thoroughly.

enders-gameBecause never in my entire childhood did I feel like a child. I felt like a person all along–the same person that I am today. I never felt that I spoke childishly. I never felt that my emotions and desires were somehow less real than adult emotions and desires.

Ender’s Game reminded me that the world is not dead and that I am the one who would probably be dead before I manage to discover all that the human race has to offer. I’m amazed at the fact that I can still be amazed. And that’s Ender’s Game in a nutshell. I just love when that happens. When a book proves to me that there are still things to discover out there, things to marvel and to enjoy in. Am I exaggerating? Probably, I’m in a poetically philosophical mood. All Ender’s Fault. That’s all I have to say about it. I care not about plot development, characterization and psychological development, mythology…I read that Ender is a Jungian something, there was some talk about Christ and the creation of life, there was something about him not being a purely formulaic character. I just wonder what the race could accomplish if we stopped treating children like blithering idiots and gave them some credit and more freedom. 

tumblr_mn6e1vc0fU1qz8vumo1_500Once again, Hollywood decided to pillage an art form and reshape it in a way that will make money. Or so I suspect. I admit, I am biased. I love a good book movie,  but not every book was meant to be a movie, or so we of little imagination like to think. I don’t think Ender’s Game will make a good movie, not because it’s not movie material, but because I don’t think that they have the balls which take to make Ender’s Game into a paradigm-shifting movie. There’ll be a lot of CGI and awesome special effects. I suspect they’ll find a decent child-actor or two. I suspect they’ll bend over backwards to make sure the movie is appealing to as wide an audience as possible and that it is approved for the general population. I think it is too much to hope they’ll make a PG-13. I shall wait until November, and pray to the Speaker for the Dead I’m dead wrong. In the meantime if you wish to read the book, do it now. And do not watch the teaser trailer before finishing the book in its entirety.

Superhero Picture Post (sort of)

My blog doesn’t have enough pictures. So here are some which will, at the same time, serve as an prelude to my next post. Justice Mags are by Artgerm. Click the boys for source.

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We have seen an amazing proliferation of movies based on comic-books. In the last two years we have had a pleasure (or displeasure) of seeing: X-Man: First Class, Thor, Captain America, Iron Man, The Amazing Spider-Man, Green Lantern, Green Hornet, Batman: The Dark Knight Rises, Thor, Cowboys & Aliens….

What awaits us in 2013/2014 period? Man of Steel, Thor: The Dark World, Captain America: The Winter Soldier, Guardians of the Galaxy, Avengers 2, Ant-Man, Wolverine, Kick-Ass 2, Sin City 2, The Amazing Spider-Man 2, X-Men: Days of Future Past , Fantastic Four reboot… Need I continue?

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What do you think, have we had enough?

A/N: Please click the following link to find out how you can help thousands of people who lost their homes in the Balkan floods (May, 2014). Thank you!