The days before San Diego Comic Con…

No matter how prepared my wife and I are for San Diego Comic Con (we’ve been attending the event together for nearly 15 years now), it seems like the last week before the event is always a bit of a mad dash to finish things. I spent the better part of yesterday putting together revised/new…

Marvel’s “Iron Man” ten years later…

The Marvel shared cinematic universe first came online with 2008’s “Iron Man.”   There’d been many other Marvel Comics properties adapted as films (“X-Men”, “SpiderMan”, “Hulk”) but “Iron Man” was the first that was deliberately designed to be part of a greater whole. It’s a universe that (10 years and 19 or so movies later) shows no…

“Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom”: an apt title?

“Jurassic Park: Fallen Kingdom,” the fifth movie in the “Jurassic” franchise to date, is an utterly unnecessary sequel that has little-to-no reason to exist.  While it’s not nearly as  bald-faced or useless as, say, “Independence Day: Resurgence,” it only becomes truly interesting right at the finish line. Director Juan Antonio Bayona (“The Orphanage”) does a decent enough…

“Deep Impact”: an unfairly overlooked end-of-the-world epic…

Twenty years ago, my then-fiancee (now current wife) and I took in a new Steven Spielberg produced, Mimi Leder directed (barely) science fiction movie about a comet on a collision course with Earth called “Deep Impact.” A large cosmic mass in danger of colliding with Earth isn’t exactly the most original idea.   There was 1951’s…

Revisiting “Raiders of the Lost Ark” in cinema…

Whip it good. This week, my wife and I took in a screening of the 1981 Steven Spielberg/George Lucas classic “Raiders of the Lost Ark” at our local cinema.   I hadn’t seen “Raiders” theatrically since the summer of 1981, when I was all of 14.   This time, nearly four decades later, I was a…

My personal Martian chronicles…

Discovery. A few days ago, I turned on the news to finally hear something other than scandals, angry tweets, and a world increasingly going to hell in a hand basket.  There was a headline story about the planet Mars.   The Curiosity rover, which landed on Mars almost 6 years ago, had discovered organic material on…

HUMANS: TV’s no-frills cybernetic revolution…

It’s unfortunate that “HUMANS,” a terrific British cyber-revolt series (based on a Swedish series) has to share an era with HBO’s “Westworld.”   Don’t get me wrong, my wife and I enjoy Westworld very much; it’s a beautiful piece of science-fiction television, and arguably the best mindf–k TV series since 1967’s “The Prisoner.” It’s that HUMANS…

“Deadpool 2”: Electric Boogaloo…

“Deadpool”, the unapologetically R-rated clown prince of superheroes, has spawned a sequel that’s even more outrageously meta (and perversely funny) than its parent. “Deadpool 2” is the second in cowriter/producer/star Ryan Reynolds’ series of passion project-atonements for the grotesque misfire of 2011’s “Green Lantern” (words can’t convey my loathing of that movie) and his much maligned…

So be it, Jedi: “Return of the Jedi”, 35 years later…

Time flies like the Millennium Falcon through hyperspace. Looking back 35 years (gasp!), I still tend to regard “Return of the Jedi” as the first genuine misstep of cinematic Star Wars (the runt of the original trilogy litter).   I realize it  is a favorite for some, and I’m not trying to challenge or argue anyone else’s opinion…

Retro-Musings: 1971’s “The Omega Man”…

Between the late 1960s and early 1970s, a slew of post-apocalyptic, dystopian science fiction movies appeared in movie theatres…and it seemed like every other one of them starred Charlton Heston. There were Heston’s two “Planet of the Apes” movies (the 1968 original and its 1970 sequel, “Beneath the Planet of the Apes”), and an adaptation of Harry…

“Solo: A Star Wars Story” is no scruffy-looking nerf-herder…

Like many Star Wars fans of ‘a certain age’, I’ve weathered my share of Star Wars disappointments; substandard paperback tie-in novels (“Han Solo at Star’s End” “Splinter of the Mind’s Eye”), the dreaded “Star Wars Holiday Special”, as well as the long-anticipated but soul-crushingly disappointing prequels.  What’s kept me going as a fan was an unshakable…