Sunday, August 29, 2004

last night was yet another successful movie night, a *greatest hits* version for a couple of newbies we finally corralled into joining us. i think both dorf and Art had a good time; hopefully they'll join pAT, Ron and me for another excursion down film dementia in the near future. a good time was definitely had by all.

i totally spaced that Yimou Zhang's Hero was opening this weekend otherwise i would've hit the matinee today. at least it still came in #1 in surprisingly wide release. i'll for sure catch it this weekend and try to drag someone w/me. despite already owning the DVD for almost 2yrs it's still a theater must-see b/c it's such a cinematic flick that is grand in every way. i look forward to it. after running some errands (more tubs for toy storage) and grabbing my sunday carry-out from Amitabul, i picked up my library hold of The Golden Voyage of Sinbad and watched it as soon as i got home.

sadly the '74 Harryhausen flick doesn't hold up so well today. at least not as i remember it. for those vaguely familiar w/this one (2nd of the Harryhausen Sinbad trilogy) Golden Voyage features the one-eyed centaur vs. griffin stop-motion climax. but the movie itself is a bore and the real "action" doesn't begin until around 40 minutes into it! the 6-armed statue of Kali coming to life is pretty cool but even Harryhausen's creatures cannot save a drag of a movie. however, i must say that the real high point of the flick is Caroline Munro whom i had forgotten was a b-movie siren in her own right from the 70s along the lines of Raquel Welch.
Caroline Munro in Golden Voyage of Sinbad 1974
wow. and double wow. ^_^
Caroline Munro in Golden Voyage of Sinbad 1974
and she makes sitting thru this dreck worth it. her and the stop-motion monsters, that is (besides being a "Bond girl" she also co-stars w/David Hasselhoff in Starcrash, an abysmal Star Wars ape from 1979; i have to get that!).

besides Golden Voyage i watched another slew of anime torrents. i am happy to report that i'm back on the torrent viewing wagon having relegated pokemon to the trunk space (oh, btw, i beat the elite 4 in Silver a couple nights ago; it was much easier than i expected. ho-hum). i've been really glued to Samurai 7 and Samurai Champloo recently. i can't believe i waited until now to begin watching these fabulous series but in a way it's good b/c i have accumulated enough episodes to watch 'em back to back w/o waiting for the latest one.

Samurai 7Samurai 7 is loosely based on Akira Kurosawa's pinnacle opus Seven Samurai - the premise is the same as is the intentional knod to Mifune's "Kikuchiyo" (the character in S7 shares the same name!) but S7 is rather different in many other aspects that i won't go into here. you'll just have to watch for yourself. i burned some eps for pAT and my brother; i think they'll dig it. i am enjoying it immensely.

Samurai Champloo is a whole 'nother animal. set near the end of the Edo Period when ronin wandered the land looking for work, Champloo pairs two polar opposite samurai to aid a girl in her mission to find the "samurai that smells like sunflowers". there's plenty of comedy, drama, action and history all mixed in w/very modern editing. the 1st episode is almost annoying to watch as it "scratches" from one situation to another and then back again. fortunately they don't employ this turntablism cum editing technique often. it's altogether a really entertaining series so far. i'm sure i'll get the DVDs of both of these series whenever they are licensed.

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