Tag Archives: Adventure

From Manga to Film, Alita: Battle Angel Reaching Zalem & Sequel Hopes

25 Feb

By Ed Sum
(The Vintage Tempest)

James Cameron and Robert Rodriguez’s live-action adaptation of Yukito Kishiro’s Gunnm (Alita: Battle Angel in America) barely scratches the surface of what the 28 volume manga is (including Last Order and excluding Mars Chronicles which is still ongoing). Ever since Cameron announced he secured the rights in 2000 to bringing Gally’s (her name in the original manga) story to the cinema, I wondered if all the series will be covered. The anime barely scratched the surface. According to Polygon, this producer secured the rights for future video treatments and no further animation is likely to happen.

This film uses most of the American naming conventions than stick to the original. The CGI and motion capture technology to realize what Cameron wanted was not there and the wait for this film was frustrating. Cameron’s first idea was to turn the heroine into a Joan of Arc type figure and thankfully Kishiro corrected him. Gally is a rōnin. She serves no master. It makes sense, because in all her travels in the manga, she either had to leave people she cares for behind or they will die. This detail was revealed in a taped Q&A in early screenings of this film and to have this manga artist give his nod of approval is a good sign.

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The Incredible Story of the Giant Pear Sails Away on VOD!

6 Dec

By Ed Sum
(The Vintage Tempest)

The cinematic adaptation of Jakob Martin Strid‘s Den Kempestore Pere (The Incredible Story of the Giant Pear) may well have some fans of children’s works wonder how it stands to Roald Dahl’s James and the Giant Peach? Both shine as solid pieces of family entertainment. The Danish work is getting distribution in North America courtesy of Uncork’d Entertainment and is available on VOD services like iTunes and Google Play.

This delightful work is comparable to Hayao Miyazaki‘s Castle in the Sky, Laputa. This filmmaker was the key animator to notable early works like Animal Treasure Island and Puss in Boots, and for this newest film, it may have drawn some inspiration by it. When two anthropomorphic kids, Sebastian (Alfred Bjerre Larsen), an elephant, and Mitcho (Liva Elvira Magnussen), a cat, find a message in a bottle, revealing where J.B. (the Mayor of Sunnytown) disappeared off to, they embark on a wondrous adventure (in a pear).

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Where’s the Archaeology in Tomb Raider?

22 Mar

By Ed Sum
(The Vintage Tempest)

  • Spoiler Alert

Tomb Raider is one of those franchise universes I loved playing and following because of the locations. From lost catacombs in Peru to Egypt, China to Greece, Cambodia and back to Egypt, the original games went to a whole ton of places where I happily followed along. The films took her to Cambodia, Italy, Greece and Africa. The reboot stuck to a jungle island in the Devil’s Sea (off Japan) and the followup went to remote parts of Russia. Both were very enjoyable plays, but I missed the crazy fantastique from the early games.

The original movies and games, to which longtime fans will recall, had Lara Croft globetrotting to picturesque ancient worlds to deal with ancient evils. If she was not the figure digging for the truth, either her allies or enemies were. However cheesy these films were, those movies belonged in the so bad it’s good category. When Angelina Jolie declined to reprise her role for a third film, the time was ripe to start the games anew. Of course, that meant the movie universe needs to follow suit.

This version of Lara (Alicia Vikander) has no archaeological training. She’s a young lady on the run not only from her past but also her future. She’s a spunky lass with no proper future in sight; she has daddy issues. This part of the plot defines the core of the film and narrative-wise, this re-imaging is off to a good start.

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What’s Next after Rasputin, Voice of the Dragon #5?

8 Mar

By Ed Sum
(The Vintage Tempest)

Dark Horse Comics’ Rasputin, The Voice of the Dragon is a fantastic read. If I had to make comparisons, this work takes cues from Young Sherlock Holmes. I spoke with Chris Roberson during Emerald City Comic-Con 2018 and he said this mad monk is not even at full power. More stories are planned.

Hellboy creator Mike Mignola and co-writer Roberson are a great team to extend this universe in new ways I highly approve of. They brought everything I adore about Ancient Egypt as a mystery religion in a post-Victorian age to life. The art by Christopher Mitten is consistency fantastic and the color tones by Dave Stewart gives this work a look of early cinema.

This latest issue takes on a vibe from Raiders of the Lost Ark and I love it! Trevor Bruttenholm is literally putting his head in the mouth of the lion. After figuring out who Albert Mayhew is and ascertaining his afterlife, his ghost leads him to France. The following spoilers recap the story so far:

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