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On Avengers: Endgame & It’s Implications in the MCU

26 Apr

By Ed Sum
(The Vintage Tempest)

Expectations are high for Avengers: End Game to see how Thanos will ultimately get defeated. I know some points from Ant-Man & The Wasp are key to this film more than the film introducing Captain Marvel. To see the heroes make use of the quantum realm can mean anything… and just what happens is a huge spoiler which I will not directly address in part one of a two-part article. Massive spoilers will be explored later.

Overall, the experience of seeing Endgame is worth the wait of everything the past films built up to. It’s well-paced, packed to the gills with Easter Eggs to sate the Marvel Cinematic Universe fans and gives audiences everything expected of a blockbuster film. Warning, a few Act One reveals follow:

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Flying Higher and Higher with Tito and the Birds

22 Apr

By Ed Sum
(The Vintage Tempest)

Tito and the Birds is a Brazilian animated movie that transcends. His avian friends are everywhere, and they symbolize a higher power he immediately recognizes. The alien rocks (that were once human) he finds are bumps on a log for a reason…

Praise is high for this work, and it will soon land on home video on April 23 courtesy of Shout! Factory.

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All The Legends & Lore That Inspired Shazam

20 Apr

By Ed Sum
(The Vintage Tempest)

Amongst Baby Boomers, The Adventures of Captain Marvel defined the pulp-action superhero who would later be known as Shazam. For Gen X’ers, The Shazam/Isis Hour was a maligned television show of the mid-70s and it has its cult appeal. Jump to 1981, The Greatest American Hero showed how Stephen J. Cannell developed a fun, purposeful superhero sporting a different kind of symbol who wants to do what’s right in a cop buddy sitcom formula. The problems the character faced as the series progressed include learning how to use his powers, talking to the aliens in why he was selected and trying to keep those he loved safe.

To bring all those previous iterations of a superhero sitcom movie, Shazam, took several decades of storytelling in the television world to experiment with and the payoff is terrific. Ignoring the troubled property when it was first introduced in the ’40s to its reinvention by DC Comics, this 2019 movie borrows on many comedic tropes from the small screen as Billy Batson (Asher Angel) tries to figure out what being a superhero means. He has no book to guide him. He only has a comic book superhero obsessed foster brother Freddie (Jack Dylan Grazer) to offer tips and his own moral compass to keep him pure. The only misfire is in how nothing new is added to make it stand out.

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Finding the Yin and Yang in Scary Stories Documentary

18 Apr

By Ed Sum
(The Vintage Tempest)

Everything fans wanted to know about Alvin Schwartz and Stephen Gammell‘s collaborative work gets beautifully and excellently explored in Cody Meirick’s documentary Scary Stories. Both talents share equal credit in this exploration of the three-book series, Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark.

Not only were Schwart’z family interviewed, but also a variety of talents (from uber fans to fellow authors) profess their love for this team. There’s plenty of talkie moments to narrate the life of these creators, and in what I particularly enjoyed is in how enduring these works are still today. Every generation has a series of books they adored. Whether that’s with Conan the Barbarian, EC’s Tales from the Crypt, The Hardy Boys, Nancy Drew, The Vampire Lestat, Goosebumps and etc., the culture that’s grown is explored in Meirick’s work.

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