Tag Archives: Supernatural

Regarding The Winchesters, Four Terrifying Episodes Later…

10 Nov

The WinchestersSadly, the timing of last week’s The CW’s The Winchesters didn’t celebrate All Hallow’s Eve with a special. Instead, it concerns other ghosts, but they’re not the type to be frightened over. Instead, it’s the trauma. This prequel has a lot of the classic Supernatural direction which I adored before it jumped the shark. Even though the focus is on two young adults trying to figure out what’s going on in their hometown, there’s a greater concern which I’m just waiting for the series to eventually manifest.

The Wild West vibe Dean Winchester instils as that narrator is perfect. He’s on his parents’ lives as though he were there, watching it all unfold. It’s possible Jensen Ackles will fully reprise his role. For now, he’s merely a voice as he reflects on how his mom, Mary Campbell (Meg Donnelly), has been the guiding force and the true hunter in this family.

As the pilot episode revealed, she’s motivated to keep on dealing with those monsters that go bump in the night, because her father, also a monster hunter, was trying to figure out what their master agenda is. But after John Winchester (Drake Rodger) comes home to Lawrence, Kansas, to resume a normal life, he gets caught in this conspiracy and decides it’s better to help than hide. He’s a complete neophyte, and it’ll be up to Mary to teach him.

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About The House of the Lost on the Cape, Japanese Folklore and More in this Home Video Review

5 Oct

The House of the Lost on the CapeEleven Arts and Shout! Factory
Available to purchase on Amazon USA

The animated adaptation of Sachiko Kashiwaba’s novel The House of the Lost on the Cape is sweet. Not only does it carefully touch upon recent events in a thoughtful manner, but also brings folklore to life, by revealing what its relationship is to the environment. The themes explored isn’t too different from what Studio Ghibli’s Pon Poko paraded in a town facing ecological devestation. Instead, the harmony is more reminescent from My Neighbour Totoro, and that’s why I took notice.

In this film’s case, the opening act recalls the devestation from the 2011 Tohoku earthquake. The people who chose to stay in the Kitsunezaki region are just doing what they can to go on. But from the terror comes a chance for Yui (Mana Ashida) to leave home. She wasn’t happy because of constant family squabbles, and what we learn about this past is not always neatly explained. Sometime afterwards in her wanderings, she befriends another child, Hiyori (Sari Awano)–who lost her parents–and what they discover may well be a chance to learn how to live life to its fullest.

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After Three Thousand Years of Longing, Should That Be, “I’d Do Anything For Love?”

5 Sep

Three Thousand Years of LongingI’m no stranger to the djinni narrative when considering my love for One Thousand and One Nights, but as for being as well versed as Dr. Alithea Binnie (Tilda Swinton) in Three Thousand Years of Longing, she has me beat. As a narratologist (an individual who studies tales which impact our perception of culture in the world around us), she knows something that mythologists don’t. This tale is as compelling as Bill Moyers’ interview with Joseph Campbell (Power of Myth), and what’s explored considers why this trope persists to this day. The last work I read was Three Little Wishes, which is a British take on the concept.

In what George Miller deconstructs may well be a Australian verion. He examines the rules for living a fulfilling life over being confined to the mundane. That’s the problem Binnie faces, and when she awakens the Djinni (Idris Elba) in the bottle, what he offers condemns her world view–she knows his kind from literature. And when he tries to rebuff the stereotype, the fun tête-à-tête they have reveals a look of his life and those he’s attempted to make better–if it can be called that. But sadly, he’s been forced to return to the glass container every time.

 

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Hungry Ghost Festival 2022. Something Old and Something New in Movies That Chew Up the Concept.

20 Aug

Hungry Ghost FestivalSome years seem less spirited when films released near Hungry Ghost Festival offer nothing new. In entertainment, producers aren’t obligated to make a film during this time, as we get to see them year-round. Now that we are a week into this event, it’s time to consider what is available to watch–a mix of old and new. In the past two years, Ghost Lab (Thailand), and Irul: Ghost Hotel (Malaysia) and Umma (Korean-American) are three works worth checking out. The links providedd here go to their respective trailers on YouTube.

I won’t say too much about them, as what I’d reveal would be laden with spoilers. They are worth the time to catch, and they certainly had me considering going to sleep with the lights on. Thankfully they have a State-side VOD/Streaming release. Ghost Lab and Umma are on Netflix, and Irul is on Amazon Prime USA.

To round out this spooky list of four titles to check out, what I offer is a fond look back at an old, underappreciated Stephen Chow film, Out of the Dark, which deals with problematic ghosts. I feel this film truely represents everything the Hungry Ghost Festival is all about–placating and respecting those entities said to wander our world. When these spirits are out for vengence, just what can mortals do to turn things around? In this film’s case, turn to Leon (Chow), and hope this “professional” can bust some ghosts! Unfortunately, he’s a few cards short of a full deck, and he’s not quite the expert everyone makes him out to be.

Here, Mr. Li (Chi-Fai Chow) is scared that his late mother (Suk-Mui Tam) will return to haunt him. She blames him for her death, and that’s everything someone hoping their elder’s spirit is at peace doesn’t want! Add on top Kwan (Karen Mok) and some inept security guards who hire Leon to deal with this haunting, and everything that goes wrong will!

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It’s Summer Lovin’ with GKIDs Deji Meets Girl Theatrical Release Next Season

4 Aug

Deji Meets GirlComing this fall from GKIDS is Deji Meets Girl. After its latest screening at Fantasia Film Festival as a compiled film presentation, anime fans who haven’t seen this high school paranormal romance will get a chance later this year. To note, this anime made its debut at the last year’s event, before being shown on Japanese TV as shorts, and getting another round this year. 

The story takes place over the summer, making this appropriately timed debut even more appealing, and there’s nothing wrong with having an innocent fling, ala Summer Nights (Grease). Where this series shares a similarity to the musical is in how the boy (Ichiro) admits to taking an interest in a girl he meets at a beach (Maise). As for whether she’ll change her approach to winning his heart–we’re not certain. In the episodes I’ve seen so far, they aren’t officially dating.

Ichiro isn’t a greaser. But he does have that John Travolta charm to make me think of this analogy. In what we learn about this stranger is that he’s running away from responsbility. Beneath that cool exterior hides a scared interior. What he’s fleeing from isn’t exactly made clear, either, until the later acts.

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