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Valérian & the City of a 1000 Planets Flounders in Space

21 Jul

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By Ed Sum (The Vintage Tempest)

* Spoiler Alert

Luc Bresson is a filmmaker with a fantastic range of movies under his belt. He can craft incredible material, namely The Fifth Element, and provide quality children’s entertainment in Arthur and the Invisibles. I particularly enjoyed his adaptation of the comic book The Extraordinary Adventures of Adèle Blanc-Sec to film but with Valérian and the City of a Thousand Planets, something got lost in the translation. His latest film had an exciting start and was off to the races with its two prologues.

Sadly, it loses steam by the third act and I found myself not caring for the hero, Valérian (Dane DeHaan), saving the day. He has to prevent an alien race from going extinct and show to Laureline (Cara Delevingne) that he’s serious about pursuing a relationship with her. Val is a philanderer, and Laureline wants nothing to do with him. They are a meant to be a crime busting duo of time-agents who should implicitly trust each other much like how Mulder and Scully have to in The X-Files. The trust needs to be earned if she is to accept his proposition to marry. This early plot reveal could have defined the entire movie, but it gets ignored during massive set pieces which communicate a different story.

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Hopes for Where Spider-Man: Homecoming Will Go Next

17 Jul

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By Ed Sum (The Vintage Tempest)

To restart the Spider-Man movie franchise for the third time may seem to some industry observers a crazy attempt by Sony Pictures to keep a hold of this Marvel Comics property. Much like how 20th Century Fox does not want to let go of the Fantastic Four, eventually some give and take must be reached. Thankfully an agreement was reached to bring the hero back to where he truly belongs (perhaps, why the title Homecoming is used). At the same time, to see this character come alive in a recognizable manner reveals plenty of wholehearted fun akin to the race to get home in Ferris Bueller into the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU).

After seeing this movie for the second time, I had to make sure my feelings for this film does not change. Further viewings are needed to pick up on some nuances I noticed in this movie. A few scenes deliberately mimicked moments from another familiar character. The personalities between Spidey and Deadpool are different, but to see these two white spectacled hooligans trying to save the day does need mentioning.

Most of the laughs come from how Peter Parker (Tom Holland) is hoping for another chance to work with the Avengers. After his introduction in Captain America: Civil War, dealing with neighbourhood crime is not the same. When he finds weapons powered by powerful alien tech illegally trafficked, nobody at Avengers Headquarters seems to care. Spider-Man has to investigate and put the criminal ring down himself.

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Ed’s Comic Book Diary – Impressions on Van Isle Con

13 Jun

17972139_290562181379367_7532591749511814314_oBy Ed Sum (The Vintage Tempest)

Out of the many conventions I have attended over the years, some leave me wanting for more and others make me wish it could go on forever. With small events, the choices of what to do can leave me realizing I can take on most of the show in under a few hours and enjoy the sites from the city/town that’s hosting.  Van Isle Con successfully compressed down what felt like a weekend event to one day and left me wishing for more.

Well, that’s if you are not like certain buddies of mine who will remain nameless. One had a long work day the night before, and the other was here to work (sort of) but he does not understand these geek shows as well as I do. Although I did not get much sleep, as I’m a night owl by nature, I did not crash n’ burn or find myself mentally exhausted when I took a long bus ride to and fro to get to this show.

I did need time to write (and edit) to describe all that I have experienced:

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What can I see from the NFB at the Annecy 2017 Festival?

10 Jun

annecyBy Ed Sum (The Vintage Tempest)

If I only had the riches, I’d go to France in high style to enjoy the 2017 Annecy International Animated Film Festival, which takes place from June 12 to 17. There’s tons of special events and programming being offered.

After watching Captain Underpants, I’m interested in learning about the difficulties involved in translating printed artistic material to film. Acclaimed Canadian artist/director Robert Valley has a panel, From Graphic Novels to Animated Music Videos and Short Films, which I feel will be very insightful.

National Film Board of Canada

And representation from Canada is not limited. The National Film Board of Canada (NFB) will have a press conference, which will take place on June 14 at 10:30 a.m., and be presenting many animated shorts, a VR experience for attendees to enjoy (Blind Vaysha is being previewed in this medium), highlighting a retrospective on Chris Lavis and Maciek Szczerbowski, and be placing four film in competition. For the latter, I have seen a few of the pieces, and I am anxious to learn who will stand out when animation aficionados will have their eyes and ears about the news coming out of this show.

Also, the nerd in me wants to know what the next animated Marvel Entertainment piece, Ant-Man, will look like. Animators Ugo Bienvenu and Kevin Manach will be talking about their work in this series.

Can someone buy me a plane ticket, please?

From the Press Release, the details revealed are:

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