Revisiting the 80s in Absurdist Fashion. Night Court is Back!

3 Feb

Night Court 2023NBC’s Night Court is back in session, and instead of giving us a series laden with nostalgia, there’s some updates to show that life has moved on for some, others stuck in a rut, and the new faces are replacing familiar ones. That is, a few members of Harry Stone’s courtroom have either retired or have passed away. Although the first two episodes don’t have the zest that the original series had, I waited for the next releases to judge if the series is solid sitcom gold or not.

So far, John Larroquatte still got it as Dan Fielding, the character he plays. He’s a far cry from the irrepressible version from long ago, and to see how he developed to that state is why I’m loving this show. Although he was really hesitant to return to working at the old haunting grounds, the new young magistrate has high hopes that he can do what his collegue from long ago could offer. Be empatic and keep people from going to jail.

In the latest, “Dan V. Dating,” he’s certainly getting challenged in more ways than one. So far, this is the best episode to date, and it suggests that this series is more about Dan than the other characters. Hopefully that’ll change as the character arcs for the others get better. This new Night Court needs to better balance the narratives between the five. I’m finding the newcomers are basically replacements of those those performers who sadly passed away. Nothing’s been said about what happened to Christine Sulliven (Markie Post) or the others. She will always be that perky ray of sunshine and Abbey Stone (Melissa Rauch) gives similiar vibes. Had she lived, I’m willing to bet the producers would have put her on the bench once again.

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The Spotlight on The Colour of Ink is Sweetly Meditative

3 Feb

The Colour of InkPlaying at the Victoria Film Festival on Feb 4 (1pm) and 7 (9pm)
And coming to NFB.ca Summer 2023

Brian D. Johnson’s The Colour of Ink is a beautiful documentary to behold on the silver screen. Not only does it vividly render the pigmented products made by Jason Logan for us to behold, but also, we see Nicholas De Pencier‘s camerawork provide some beautiful juxtapositions. But there’s more to this work than meets the eye, pardoning the pun. To understand what ink is requires knowing its history with artistic expression. Whether it’s applied in aboriginal art, calligraphy, or tattooing, the creators often want that hue to stand out.

When it comes to inking comic books or digital products, sometimes the advances in technology overshadow what’s loved with the traditional process–those liquid textures or shapes formed by a brush are much more organic and alive! To let it bleed through and act according to its own fractual language is the message Johnson I believe wants to get across.

To hear what others think of Jason’s product is very insightful. After being raised by the sights and sounds that make up the natural beauty of Gambier Island, he became an artist himself. But to bring that essence to the canvas meant creating his own paints. These days, he lives in the big city, working as a graphic designer for big clients like The New Yorker, and managing the Toronto Ink Company, where he creates specialty inks in small batches for clients all over the world!

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Jinkies! After 6 Episodes, HBO Max’s Velma’s Unexpected Turn Is With Why Crystal Cove Is….

1 Feb

VelmaIs it safe to say HBO Max’s Velma exists in a different continuity than all the past entries in the Scooby-Doo Universe combined? Although there are some references to the canon and an homage to other Hanna Barbera cartoons, it’s tough to say. At least the respect for everything Frank Welker did for this series (he voiced Scooby and Fred) is acknowledged, but I honestly do not think this inclusion is meaningful.

Not even George Jetson reference warrents a laugh. But to be fair, I’m giving my evaluation after watching the first six episodes. One missing factor is in how the main characters do not really respect each other at the start. There seems to be a rivalry between Daphne and Velma, which gets worked out later. Elsewhere, just why Norville matters is put into a strange place, and as for why Fred is a haspin needs a better explanation. They know each other mostly because they’re the same graduating class at Crystal Cove High. Just how they clicked to become a team still hasn’t happened yet.

This entry to this franchise is simply odd. Just because the title uses the same font as the Scooby Doo cartoons implies some relationship, it’s just an odd duck out. As for this group of teenagers to work as a team, it might manifest in the remaining episodes. Shaggy might adopt a dog, but maybe this canine was in his imagination all along. Fandom recognises him as a drug addict and as for that canine; perhaps we’ve been interpreting those past series through his eyes all this time!

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Blue Thermal Promises to Fly High in March!

1 Feb

Shout Factory
March 14, 2023

From the renowned animation powerhouse Telecom Animation Film (Lupin III movies, Orange) and director Masaki Tachibana (Tokyo Magnitude 8.0, Princess Principal, Barakamon) comes a captivating new anime adventure, Blue Thermal.

Produced by Telecom Animation Film, this movie directed by Tachibana from a screenplay written by Tachibana and Natsuko Takahashi (Farewell, My Dear Cramer), is the long-awaited feature film adaptation of author and creator Kana Ozawa’s popular manga series which ran in Shinchosha’s Monthly Comic @Bunch Magazine for many years before being published in five book volumes.

This artful and beautiful coming-of-age movie captures the tension and excitement of a young college student who joins the school’s aviation club flying for the first time, as well as the beauty and exhilaration of the aerial scenery as seen from the pilot’s seat. The film’s theme song “Blue Thermal” and the song “Beautiful Bird” are performed by the popular Japanese piano rock band SHE’S.

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Are The Three Investigators Trapped in Descent of the Dragon? They Need Help From Elsewhere….

30 Jan

The Three InvestigatorsThe Three Investigators are back and in this reboot subtitled, Descent of the Dragon, the cast has changed. From American to German talents, the reasoning is because this popular book franchise didn’t wane by much over the decades in other countries, whereas in America, it’s been largely forgotten. It’s sad, as I grew up on these books over Hardy Boys and Nancy Drew.

The last two feature films were released back in 2007 (Secret of Skeleton Island) and 2009 (Secret of Haunted Castle). These adaptations of the novels aren’t hugely successful, and perhaps that’s because Terror Castle was the book title rather than film, which may have led some to not realise a sequel was made. Although much time has passed since then, 2023 marks the possible return of the series at least in Germany. In that country, this film is titled Die Drei ??? – Erbe des Drachen.

With Sony Pictures local division involved, I’m hopeful it won’t remain a regional release for long. Fans can reach out to this studio through social media to ask for a wider release. I didn’t notice until information about this film was brought up recently on Reddit, and I feel they deserve a new life back in the country where the story was first penned.

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