When The Legend of Gatokaca and an Eternal Conflict Returns…

The rich Hindu mythology brought to life in The Legend of Gatokaca requires some foreknowledge to truly appreciate what this film is about.

Legend of Gatotkaca Blu-Ray CaseAvailable to Stream on Hi-yah and purchase on Amazon USA

Indonesian filmmaker Hanung Bramantyo wants to show to the world that The Legend of Gatokaca is built from folklore. It certainly shows why superheroes were once gods a long time ago. This individual is from the Mahabharata, an epic tale which includes fascinating elements from Indonesian mythology that put others to shame. Much of it gets explained throughout the film from the eyes of Professor Arya (Edward Akbar) and a student Erlangga (Jerome Kurnia). They teach Yuda (Rizky Nazar) about the past, and why it all matters if he’s to be the reincarnation of a demigod hero, Gatotkaca.

To get new audiences up to speed and yet move the modern update forward is better paced than other works I’ve recently seen. Although, the details go by quite fast and the 130min run time is rather long, I’m glad to have the home video release so I can rewind or pause. That way, I can make sense of the lengthy exposition.

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Martial Arts and Superheroics Collide in Legend of Gatotakaca

Legend of Gatotakaca debuts on Hi-Yah! streaming service today and it’s loosely based on the life and times of the heroic god of the same name.

Legend of GatotakacaDebuting on Hi-YAH Streaming Service
Feb 17, 2023

Indonesian superhero movies don’t get a lot of love abroad. That’s because there aren’t that many and to criticise them against the heavyweights from America isn’t fair. As a result, these works really need word of mouth to get known. Legend of Gatotakaca (Satria Dewa: Gatotkaca) released in its native country last year, and now has international distribution courtesy of Well GO USA.

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The Bungle With Paramount Plus’ Rumble And Where to Find It Online

There’s a decent enough story in Rumble to keep me interested, and at the same time, there’s another theme I wished could have been explored.

Rumble Film PosterWWE Studios‘ doesn’t make a lot of animated films, and when they do, viewers recognise why it’s often about selling the parent’s company style of entertainment. Make it kitschy, and they will come.

The last work had their best known wrestlers teaming up with Scooby-Doo and the gang. They were decent enough such that two films (Scooby-Doo! WrestleMania Mystery and Curse of the Speed Demon) got made! But with their latest, Rumble, what’s presented isn’t anything I haven’t seen before.

Originally released to Paramount Plus last year, this CGI film wasn’t able receive the attention it so deserves. Now that it’s widely available (it arrived on home video in late October), and is streamable on services like Netflix (arriving in Canada Dec 15, 2022) and Amazon Prime USA, it’s possible to see what the fuss is about. I enjoyed it for the kaiju moments–which was sadly very brief–more so than its nod to the universal monsters of yore. Thankfully there are plenty of Easter eggs to laugh at. But not everyone will spot them all. For example, there’s a blink and you’ll miss “Mini Cthulhu” scrolling past.

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E.T. The Extra-Terrestrial is 40-Years Old and Regarding Its Anniversary Re-Release!

In what shines are the two new featurettes. We have “40 Years of E.T. The Extra-Terrestrial,” an all new retrospective of the film, and “TCM Classic Film Festival’s An Evening with Steven Spielberg.”

The Extra-Terrestrial is 40-Years OldAlso playing at Victoria IMAX Oct 27-31.

It’s hard to believe E.T. The Extra-Terrestrial is 40-years old. This movie was developed hot after Close Encounters of a Third Kind, and to say it belongs in the same universe is a feasible fan theory. To say this has been confirmed isn’t in the new featurettes in this celebratory re-release, but I get the sense that Spielberg would be okay with it. He interest in UFOlogy may have been limited to these two films, but when we consider his War of the Worlds adaptation, the idea does fall apart.

Anyone who didn’t purchase the prior versions isn’t missing much. I could have picked up the 35th anniversary release, which had a 4K restoration, but I don’t always count this year as a seminal milestone. This latest release does one better, and it’s all in the two new featurettes made for this release. In terms of collectables, the ultimate set (available on Amazon USA) offers a collectible tin tote, thermos, booklet and Certificate of Authenticity for the die-hard collector to proudly display. Another release adds a Bendy Figs figurine for Walmart, and the Steelbook updates the art (Target). Anyone wanting either just needs to ask a friend in the States to buy or one can order online.

All the material from prior releases (deleted scenes, the evolution, and creation of E.T., and 20th anniversary premiere) are offered in this collection. The old content are:

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Joe Koy’s Easter Sunday in October. It’s Not Strange At All.

This character study about the inner workings of this Polynesian family in the movie Easter Sunday isn’t too deep. It’s at least entertaining.

Available to purchase on Amazon

Joe Valencia (stage name Jo Koy) is a comedic talent worth noting because he cites two comedy legends—Robin Williams and Steve Martin—as huge influences. Both made successful transitions to the big screen, and to be on par in Easter Sunday will take a lot more work.

He can do it. This movie sees him getting top billing, and its success must go beyond being a family sitcom about a Filipino household coming together for their Asian style holiday. The theatrical release in August and home video issue in Oct is unusual, but I welcomed this change of pace. The bonus material is nothing to rave about, and the best takeaway is that it was filmed during the pandemic. As for what it took to bring two of my favourite entertainers to this production, I was hooked.

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