Sunday 11 April 2010

Triangulation: Moore, Looming Doom & Gloom, and Trash of the Nitwits

I'm still reeling from Cash-in of the Turkeys. A film has to try to be this bad, and given the amount of money and special effects pumped into the thing, it made me more than a bit angry.

Sunday has another anniversary, the death of C. L. Moore. I can't quite recall, but I think I might've read Moore before I read Conan during my great excursion into Fantasy Masterworks in the early 2000s. I certainly remember reading Jirel before I got around to Aggie and Sonya, though the latter two certainly don't suffer in the comparison.

Wednesday has something rather special with unusual circumstances leading to it. Originally, my "Patrice Louinet's Thoughts" post included some of my impressions of the upcoming Howard film & television projects. However, it turned out that fellow blogger Miguel was also working on a post. Rather than abandon the project, however, Miguel and I just decided to co-author a single, larger post. Since he and I agreed on just about every count, I think the final result ended up exceedingly well.

I just wish I didn't see the usual internet suspects accusing the Howard projects of ripping things off, especially if they assume that Howard had anything to do with them...

El Borak? More like El Bourne, amirite?
Come on, a former secret agent working against his own government with a codename? Plus, the whole idea of different governments wanting a former war veteran to work for them just reeks of Rambo III. And let's not even talk about how his costume totally rips off Indiana Jones

Pigeons of YAWN
Seriously, this sounds like just about every haunted house movie EVAR. People trapped in a haunted place, the previous owners did terrible things, they can't escape because someone in their party is working against them - who hasn't seen this a jillion times before? It might've been fresh and original in the 1930s, but nowadays horror audiences are a little more sophisticated.

Make Love, Not Hyboria?
I'm sure glad someone's going to poke fun at Age of Conan, though everything they should poke fun at - the launch, the sexism, the racism (WHY NO BLACK CIMMERIANS, EH FUNCOM!?!), the ripoffs from everywhere else (So Thoth-Amon has a ring that has all his power? Lol real original). Here's hoping it at least points out the discrepancies in the lore, like how the game's "Conan" has black hair and blue eyes instead of brown and green, and why he doesn't have a German accent.

Red Sonj- I mean, Dark Agnes
So she's a red-headed girl in old times, who has a traumatic experience men when she was young, and became a warrior? LMAO, come on, it sucked when it was called Red Sonja and it'll suck here. Ppl say it was the same guy who wrote it, which explains a lot. I mean, the guy who did Kull, Conan and Solomon Kane gave them all the EXACT SAME BACKSTORY except changed a few names about, so it's obvious Agnes and Sonja would be identical too. BOOORING.

James Allison: There Can Be Only One!
A man who's lived since ancient times under different guises who has one nemesis who he's been fighting through history, and now has to defeat him once and for all in modern times. Yeah, that's a cool story... shame they already made it. It's called HIGHLANDER. Are there no original ideas left in Hollywood?

John Kirowan's Supernatural Adventures
Man, I can't believe they're ripping off Supernatural! They don't even pretend they're not: they say right there, "in the vein of Supernatural!" Two young males going across America fighting demons and monsters that the world doesn't believe exist? This is worse than Mutant X ripping off X-Men.

Dull of Derivatis
Wow, so the hero's a barbarian - AGAIN. He's the last of his kind - AGAIN. He was a slave and forced to do mindless repetitive tasks for years - AGAIN. He became a fierce and dangerous gladiator - AGAIN. ROFL, how can anyone call Howard anything but a hack when he just wrote the same character over and over and over and over again? Yet here we are with another Kull movie when true, original genius like Sword of Truth, Wheel of Time and the Iron Tower languish in print.

Vikings of the Carribean
So PotC was such a success, How to Train Your Dragon, and King Arthur was a success, Hollywood thinks: why not mix Vikings with Pirates in the age of King Arthur? As usual, Hollywood can't come up with a single original idea.

Let me get this straight... A white man who doesn't fit in back on earth undergoes an experiment to put him on another planet. He ends up there, where all the animals are trying to kill him, before he finds the natives. He becomes part of them, falls in love with one of their women, and eventually becomes their leader. He fits in more here than he does on earth, and elects to stay on the planet despite the dangerous wildlife and mystery. Then, he leads the natives to victory over their enemy, who have a single fortress on the planet, the power of flight and weapons of mass destruction... and you're telling me this isn't a ripoff of Avatar? Puh-leez.

I guess ever since Deadwood came around, people wanted to make "gritty, dark, violent" westerns. What happened to the old days, when westerns were fun, light-hearted and didn't have all that sex, swearing and violence?

Not ANOTHER Rome movie set in Britain! We've already had King Arthur and The Last Legion, with Centurion and The Eagle of the Ninth coming soon, in the past five years! Ever since Braveheart and Gladiator, Hollywood thought "why don't we do both" and now we're sick of them: no more!

Friday has... gragh... Clash of the Titans. Four thousand words, and I still haven't scratched the surface of my problems with that damned film. Since I think I'm going to go insane with them all swirling about my head, I'm going to dump everything I didn't bring up in a future "Mishmash of the Cretins - Director's Cut" edition. Incidentally, apparently this was not Leterrier's version of the film, and that his original version was very different from the film we got. I don't think anything can be done with the acting, design or Sam Worthington, but at least in this the story decisions aren't quite as idiotic.

Plus for all the changes they did make, they didn't bother with the one change that they should've: despite the film being called Clash of the Titans... there was no clashing of titans. How could they take out half the film's story to add the Djinn & Hades subplot and not, you know, some actual titan-clashing? Now, what COULD have been a way to have titans clashing without changing the Perseus/Medusa/Kraken story, was to go Lord of the Rings on it: a five-to-ten minute prologue showing the epic battle between the Gods and the Titans.

Start off as the film did with the pretty stars-and-nebulae sequence, then it starts to form, and we open on a simply colossal battlefield. The twelve titans striding across a ruined landscape struggling with their offspring in a sort of Godzilla-scale royal rumble. I'm talking Atlas hurling a mountain at Coeus, Prometheus & Epimetheus scrapping with their father Iapetus, Zeus flinging lightning bolts at Cronus, things like that. Then, when things are looking grim for the Olympians, Zeus turns to Poseidon and roars "release the Kraken!" Earthquakes, tidal waves, a great indistinct shadow, then darkness.

Come on, the titanomachy on the big screen would be epic.


  1. Hi Al, it was disappointing but not unsurprising to read about the mess they made out of Clash. I like your proposed version better.

  2. it could be great... Titanomachy on screen...