As you already know, I’ve been trying to get ahead with posts. Tonight I went out for dinner for a friend’s birthday. Tomorrow night I’m going to see Adore Delano after work. I came home already to get an early-ish night feeling quite smug when I remembered. I needed to write this TBT post. I’m already a book review behind so it’s not as if I can even push it back until Friday. I’m devastated. I’ve not slept well the last few nights because I was so obsessed with finishing Daisy Jones & The Six. Sleep didn’t matter when I was so deep in that story. So, the idea of another night being up later than I meant to just fills me with sadness. Thankfully, I no longer work weekends or bank holidays. This means, for the first time in years, I have a four day Easter weekend. What am I doing? Is sleeping an adequate answer? I should probably do stuff so I don’t waste it but my bed and books are calling… but I guess they’re always calling. Just like now so I’d better not put this off any longer.
Is there something of an Arthurian revival going on at the moment. In the last couple of weeks, I’ve watched two films that involve the legend of King Arthur. Last week I finally managed to see The Boy Who Would Be King and now we have Hellboy fighting a foe who was almost vanquished by the legendary King. Am I missing something? Not that I’m complaining. It’s a great story. You know I love swordy stories about Knights and Wizards. It just seemed like my life was being dominated by it. Anyway, I should really be reviewing the Joe Cornish film this week as it was the one I watched first but I came back from Hellboy on Saturday night needing to get this out. I have a lot of thoughts. So many thoughts that I don’t think I really talk about the plot much in this review. Basically, the set-up is much the same as 2004 film but this time we’re fighting an evil old witch who wants to release Hell on Earth. She was stopped by Arthur and Merlin years ago but is back. So Hellboy and some new friends, have to stop her. Standard comic book stuff really. But could it possible live up to its predecessor?
One of the arguments about Captain Marvel that I’ve seen recently is that it doesn’t try to introduce the new superhero so much as it tries to tie up any loose ends in the MCU. That it is more about Fury’s origin than it is Carol’s. And I kind of get that because, yes, this film goes back to a time before anything else. It shows us a time before S.H.I.E.L.D. knew anything about superheroes or other worlds. It inevitably acts as an intro to the MCU. But, at the same time, those arguments also really do a disservice to the film itself. I like the idea that her presence on Earth kick-started the Avengers programme. I like that it was her who introduced Nick to the wider world. It makes that pager scene in Infinity War all the more tragic. He finally has an emergency that requires her help but he is disintegrated before they can reunite. Imagine how Carol’s going to feel when she finds out she didn’t get here in time to save him? Horrible! But let’s not think about the future because watching Captain Marvel last weekend has put me in a reflective mood. The final moments of the film when Fury realises he needs to put something in place to protect the Earth the defining moment in the MCU. It’s the reason we’re all here. It’s the reason that, in 2008, Phil Coulson turned up on Tony Stark’s doorstop asking questions. So, why not go back to the start this week? See where it all began.
It’s safe to say that there was a lot riding on this film for me. I found Wonder Woman to be a fantastic celebration of female superheroes. So much so that, as you may remember, I started tearing up during the opening scene. But I’ve never been that big a fan of Wonder Woman as a character. I’d not really read the comics and I’d not seen the TV show. She wasn’t really on my radar. Unlike Carol. I love Carol. I loved her as Ms Marvel. I love her as Captain Marvel. I love the idea of Brie Larson playing her. This film definitely sounded like it was being made for someone like me. I wanted it to be good. I wanted it to be loved. A difficult thing considering it was already under threat of trolls before its opening weekend. Let’s be honest, this was never going to be given a fair hearing from a lot of male fans and film critics. You know who I mean: men who see themselves as being as cool as Tony Stark, as sweet as Steve Rogers, and as intelligent as Bruce Banner. But men who are, in actuality, only as cringe-inducing as the Spider-Man 3‘s dancing Peter Parker. I know it’s what we’ve come to expect from pathetic fan boys and the fragile white male ego but that doesn’t mean it gets any easier to stomach. But let’s not give them any more attention and get on with the real work.
I’ve only just started it but this is already turning out to be an extremely odd post to write. For one thing, it’s that time between Christmas and New Year when nobody ever knows what day it is so I wasn’t expecting to have to post until tomorrow. For another, I’ve already posted my Top 10 Films of the Year list with this in the top spot. So, it feels like I’ve already reviewed this and should probably just move on. Finally, my family and I only really celebrated Christmas together today. We exchanged presents after a New Year’s Day lunch and it’s making it even harder to figure out what day it is. I just don’t know what to do. It’s going to take the rest of the month before I really know what day it is. But who cares. At the very least, I have a wonderful day with the people I love and I’m planning on finishing (or getting as close as possible to finishing) my current read before I go to bed tonight. If the first day is anything to go by, 2019 could turn out to be quite a lovely year. But then again, the world is still going to shit… if only superheroes were real and could sort this mess out for us.
So, as a character, Venom hasn’t exactly had a great time in Hollywood. His only other real film outing to date was the dismal Spider-Man 3 in which the murderous Symbiote made Tobey Maguire flirt with random women and dance in public. Thankfully, though it destroyed Maguire’s time as the web slinger, the 2007 film didn’t sign the death warrant on Venom’s time in front of the camera. When it was first announced that Tom Hardy was going to be starring as Eddie Brock I was extremely excited. Hardy is a fantastic actor and one that could really, under the right circumstances, bring the character to life. There is so much potential with Venom because it’s such a complex character. He’s an incredibly dangerous villain who, occasionally, finds himself fighting on the side of the good guys. It seemed like the perfect time to try again with the character now that we’re in the midst of the R rated comic book movie era. Though he lacks the humour of Deadpool, the idea of seeing Venom ripping people apart was too good to ignore.
I’ve been behind the Ant-Man series of films since the first rumblings of an adaptation. Yes, he might not be the obvious choice for a standalone movie and he may not be the most impressive of all the potential Marvel heroes. But I like him. And initially having Edgar Wright sign on as the co-writer and director only helped to increase my excitement. Unfortunately, as we now know, that was to be nothing but a fantastic dream. Though we also know that the first Ant-Man film was pretty good all things considered. It wasn’t the film we had expected or even the film he deserved but it was entertaining and charming. Paul Rudd has proved, every time he’s donned his shrinking suit, that he is the perfect choice to play Scott Lang. He was a true high point in Civil War and was sorely missed in Infinity War. So, the question was, what exactly was Scott doing whilst his friends were trying to stop Thanos from snapping half of the Earth’s population to dust? Well, thankfully Ant-Man and the Wasp is here to answer it… with added Michell Pfieffer.
I was expecting to see this a few weeks ago with a friend but, after she heartlessly decided to watch it with her boyfriend instead, we ended up seeing Solo instead. Even though I did enjoy that film I’ve been horribly bitter about not getting my way ever since. As has every other fan, I’ve been excited about Deadpool 2 ever since the teaser at the end of the first film. As soon as Cable’s name was mentioned I was in. Cable is one of those iconic characters that deserved his chance to be on film and it meant it was highly likely that Domino (another personal favourite of mine) would be popping up at some point. The excitement fluctuated depending on which actor was being connected to the role. Some of them (Ron Pearlman) underwhelmed me whilst others (Jon fucking Hamm) made my heart sing. Although, I don’t think anyone could disagree with the final choice of Josh Brolin. Look what the guy did for Thanos. How could he fuck this up? So, after a really long wait, it was finally time to watch Ryan Reynolds second turn as the Merc with a mouth. It’s safe to say that my expectations were super high.
When I saw Avengers: Infinity War earlier this month I’d seen all but one of the films in the Marvel franchise. The only missing part was the biggest hit Marvel had seen up until Infinity War was released. It wasn’t as if I’d intended to skip Black Panther. I mean I was super excited about it before it came out. Hell, as soon as T’Challa turned up in Civil War was couldn’t wait to see how the MCU dealt with introducing us to Wakanda. It was a big moment for so many people and for so many reason. But, thanks to an annoyingly hectic schedule, I missed out and I had to make the choice to see Infinity War without it. Aside from a few characters I’d obviously never seen before, I don’t think I lost anything by not seeing it. It’s probably the only Marvel film that it’s kind of okay to not have seen pre-Infinity War. That said, it’s not something you should skip entirely. I had the chance to finally see it this weekend and, honestly, it left me feeling amazing. All the time I was watching it, I had that feeling that I was experiencing something special and important. As if history was taking place right in front of my eyes. I realise that sounds not only melodramatic but also fucking pretentious but you can’t escape the feeling that something changed with this film. It was a whole new Marvel experience and a whole new approach to super films. It’s only the second time I can remember leaving a comic book movie feeling so inspired and empowered. This experience is up there with Wonder Woman in its importance to both me and the film industry as a whole.
On Tuesday I posted my spoiler-free review of the latest blockbuster in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. If you haven’t seen the film yet then, be warned, this post will discuss several big events that happen during the film. I’d suggest if that’s the case that you head to my other post instead. Then you can remain in ignorant bliss of what’s to come. Although, by this point, who hasn’t seen it? I mean look how much fucking money it’s made. Still, it’s good practice to warn of spoilers these days as I’ve run foul of them myself. I’d guessed something would happen before seeing the film and it was confirmed to me by an Instagram account that I no longer follow. They’d even made a point of not wanting to spoil to the film before they fucking spoilt it for me. It’s so frustrating. Like the time a guy I work with purposeful told me that Quicksilver died at the end of Age of Ultron despite knowing I hadn’t seen it. That guy is a straight up dick and I’ve never forgiven him. There are certain things I can let you get away with but spoiling a Marvel film? No way, man. So, without further ranting, I present my inner thoughts about Infinity War. Feel free to share your theories or disagree with me in the comments. I’m always up for a discussion about this film.