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[Interview] Songbirds. More Than Just A Museum Displaying Priceless Electric Guitars….

12 Aug

SongbirdsAvailable to rent on Amazon Prime and other streaming platforms.

Now available on VOD is Songbirds, a wonderful documentary about a museum (named after this bird) dedicated to showing how the electric guitar became what it is today. It’s about the people who built this place to what it is now, how the pandemic affected its business model, its closure and when it rose from the ashes like a phoenix to become something even better!

Their goal is to do more than showcase the history and influence of this instrument in 20th century music. Within its doors, people could play with the instruments (after paying a fee), and attend special concerts from those musicians who long to touch that first production telecaster. In its latest form, it’s to teach young children how to play too!

Dagan W. Beckett (pictured below, left) is the creative mind who made this one-hour length film. His love for this establishment is clearly evident from the first frame to last. He delivers not only a beautiful look back at this place’s founding but also hits all the right notes (pardoning the pun) to show us why more places like this need to exist around the world. Dagon BeckettBut even I had a few questions just to confirm a few lingering thoughts. It was a pleasure to correspond with him about this work.

Can we please have an introduction from you for those readers unfamiliar with your work?

I am a filmmaker/director currently located in Chattanooga, Tennessee which is just North of Atlanta. The documentary film, Songbirds, is my debut work and my team and I are so very fortunate to have received a handful of awards for it, as well as an Emmy® for best Topical Documentary.

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From Frightful Predator to Prey, A Comic Book Reader’s Perspective on ther Prequel

12 Aug

Prey Movie PosterSpoiler Alert

Anyone who read Dark Horse Comics‘ Predator series (1989-2020) will be familiar with where Prey is headed. The thought of sending one of these hunters to Earth’s distant past is nothing new, and I’ve read enough of this run to know those times where they’ve intruded upon the past, ranging from 1718 to WW1, is often a bloodbath. No matter which civilization they meet, making peace with this alien species is nearly impossible.

In one corner of the confrontation is the said Predator and the other, a Comanche tribe. Caught in the crossfire are French fur traders, and I had to chuckle. The era this tale is set in is sometime during colonisation, and the land is more than a little wild. Its downright dangerous, as viewers will soon discover. Sometimes, these tales involve two differenct factions having to work together to succeed, but when we’re dealing with a franchise dealing with people dying, nobodhy is going to win! Fans must not forget the Predator usually makes situations worse for the heroes. They are often dealing with other threats and to save their own skin is the least of their worries!

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Ancient Explorers: The Lost City of Peru and The Man Behind the Legend Quest

10 Aug

Omar Mara

People who attended SDCC a few weekends ago had plenty to look at. Whether that’d be comic books or the latest news on movies, there’s even something for the jungle explorer! Ancient Explorers: The Lost City of Peru is novel – comic book hybrid about two best friends on the quest for adventure! Together with two archaeologists, they discover an ancient map and a compass that’ll point them to more than adventure, but also self-discovery.

It’s now available across various platforms to read, and we at otakunoculture.com got a chance to talk to the author:

Could you please introduce yourself to readers unfamiliar with your work?

My name is Omar Mora. I am a writer, producer and actor from Puerto Rico who lives in Los Angeles. I have written two independent feature films; 30 Days with my brother and Inside the Circle. Both available on VOD. I have written a series of comics called The Unearthians. You can find my work at MorasProductions.com

What made you decide to create a hybrid written work with graphic novel elements? (and was it difficult to decide what parts of the narrative should be illustrated rather than described?)

When Covid came, so did the economy. Producing a comic is expensive, so the finances weren’t quite right. So we decided to do it as a hybrid. And to be honest it was the best decision. Because the design of the book along with the comic pages looks great and gives a special touch to the story. I am very happy with the final results.

It was not difficult to choose which pages were going to be comics. I usually chose pages that introduced a character, a very important aspect of the story, or fantasy elements that I knew would look amazing as art. I also wanted to choose pages that would help create intrigue in the story and create that suspense necessary for the reader to be engaged.

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What to Do with a Dead Kaiju (or should that be What Must We Do) at Fantasia 2022’s Final Day?

2 Aug

What to do with a Dead KaijuAnyone who watches a lot of Japanese monster movies knows how the story goes. We are introduced to a giant monstrous threat to humanity, people panic, and some force arrives to save the day. The two clash and sometimes the opponent dies, and that begs the question (and also the title of the movie), What to Do with a Dead Kaiju? (大怪獣のあとしまつ)

The answer we get is similar to what we saw in Shin Godzilla (while he’s alive). We have to address the ramifcations of sending out special forces, decide when to make a stand, and consider the cost of rebuilding–especially after all the missiles are fired. The mess that the Japanese special forces have to deal with afterwards is never shown, and as for other monster movies prior, we never know about the damage control that has to take place between films.

And it’s tough to tell if Satoshi Miki‘s film is trying to be serious. This movie was the last thing I saw at Fantasia Film Festival because of my love for this genre. Plus, the trailer made the film look good. Maybe next time, I should consider looking at Japanese reviews. But I have no regrets over my decision.

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Comic Con, Media Con, However You Con Call Them–We Got Pacific Northwest’s Latest Updates

2 Aug

Fan Expo VancouverOver the Spring and Summer, the Pacific Northwest is very busy because Comic Cons in all its various iterations are resuming. It started with Fan Expo Vancouver in February 2022 and no Kevin Smith wasn’t at this latest. We are hoping that Jay and Silent Bob cancelled appearance prior to this pandemic mess will come back in a future event though!

Even though the province of British Columbia had a lot of health regulations to guide what these indoor shows can do or not, thankfully they were lifted in time for this event, and I had a terrific time. My con report can be read here.

In the past two months, we also had The Vancouver Retro Gaming Expo (June 25), Kelowna Fan Experience (July 15-17) and Anirevo Summer (July 29-31) in one side of the border, and the Washington State Summer Con 2022 (June 23-25) on the other. There were no reports from the groups I monitor to say there were lots of covid cases. Most of these events communicated that attendance is at the participant’s own risk, and none of them advertised what the entry requirement was. That was buried in their webpage’s FAQ under the Health and Safety section. Everyone accepts this pandemic is not going away, and it’s up to the attendee to decide on how to stay safe. The concensus is that people just want life to go on as “normal” as possible instead of living in constant worry.

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