This Week in Geek (5-11/03/18)


Snagged a DVD copy of the Chinese film Cold War.


In theaters: Game Night certainly starts very cleverly, and keeps the twists and turns coming, throwing real people into a thriller scenario, and sending up the genre's tropes as it does. It is most overtly a spoof of David Fincher's The Game, but even with that movie in mind, it still charmed and surprised me. All the characters get a chance to be funny, and even work out some of their issues, which kind of makes Game Night a close (but foul-mouthed) cousin to the latest Jumanji film. And that's not a bad place to start from. Even better, it knows how to shoot and cut for comedy, shades of Edgar Wright. The one thing I found unbelievable amid the crazy comedy-action is that these veteran gamers only every played mainstream Parker Brothers fare. I mean, come on. Not even Cataan?! Probably a product placement thing, but still one that feels antiquated. I'm not actually saying this is a problem. It's part of the fun. Just an observation.

At home: Silk Stockings, the musical remake of Ninotchka with Fred Astaire and Cyd Charisse, is a product of its time insofar as gender politics go. Contemporary eyes will find Astaire's movie producer really kind of slimy and cheer on Charisse's Soviet robot resisting his aggressive advances. Having forgiven 1957 its attitudes, the movie is a very funny Cold War comedy, painting the Soviet regime in an amusing light, a parody of knowing parody of its brand of fascism. I've never laughed so hard or so long at systemic censorship, I swear. As a musical, it is uneven. It can go a little too long before a musical number, but then it has these wonderful dance numbers that express the characters' interior life. Its love themes are cheesy and old-fashioned, but the comedy songs are fun and memorable. You might just want to check it out for latter-day Peter Lorre in one of his weirdest roles (and that's saying something).

Wallander, the BBC series, presents three feature-length mysteries per season (à la Sherlock) for four seasons set across 8 years. Though a British production, it doesn't do away with the original novels' Swedish location, which is a nice surprise. It helps make the show stand out, and Sweden's bleak, wet landscapes are perfect for the tone of the story. Kurt Wallander's distinction, as a noir copper character, is that he feels things too intensely. Every murder weighs on him, he can't get the images of dead bodies out of his head, and it's already taken its toll on him in the very first story. Because we're so used to Kenneth Branagh playing period pieces/Shakespeare, his naturalistic performance here is all the more amazing. I'd say the first season is a little clunky and any mystery that smacks of a conspiracy less interesting that straight up murders, but overall, this is a strong, albeit depressing, drama about the end days of a veteran - but not hardened - investigator.

Doctor Who Titles: Before Hitchcock was Hitchcock, he made a number of silent films. Judging by The Lodger (1927), he was still Hitchcock. The story (remade a couple times) has a family start to wonder if the odd gentleman they've taken as a lodger is really the Ripper-like murderer roaming the foggy streets at night. And so is his interest in their daughter sincerely romantic or something more sinister? The techniques may be primitive, but Hitchcock still manages a number of inventive shots, and uses text cards in interesting ways. In contrast to the big budget affairs of Eisenstein and Lang, he's managing a lot of atmosphere and suspense with a restricted budget and very few sets. Great stuff, and for cinema buffs, it's prototypical Hitchcock in tone and subject matter. It's interesting to see how early his fascinations developed.
#The TARDIS lands in the film... The first Doctor and Susan star in the flipside of this story, showing just how the "Avenger" was brought to justice.


Anonymous said...

My guess : they are keeping the other games for the sequel.


Blog Archive


5 Things to Like Activities Advice Alien Nation Aliens Say the Darndest Things Alpha Flight Amalgam Ambush Bug Animal Man anime Aquaman Archetypes Archie Heroes Arrowed Asterix Atom Avengers Awards Babylon 5 Batman Battle Shovel Battlestar Galactica Black Canary BnB 2-in1 Books Booster Gold Buffy Canada Captain America Captain Marvel Cat CCGs Charlton Circles of Hell Class Comics Comics Code Approved Conan Contest Cooking Crisis Daredevil Dating Kara Zor-El Dating Lois Lane Dating Lucy Lane Dating Princess Diana DCAU Deadman Dial H Dice Dinosaur Island Dinosaurs Director Profiles Doctor Who Doom Patrol Down the Rabbit Hole Dr. Strange Encyclopedia Fantastic Four Fashion Nightmares Fiasco Films Within Films Flash Flushpoint Foldees French Friday Night Fights Fun with Covers FW Team-Up Galleries Game design Gaming Geekly roundup Geeks Anonymous Geekwear Gimme That Star Trek Godzilla Golden Age Grant Morrison Great Match-Ups of Science Fiction Green Arrow Green Lantern Hawkman Hero Points Podcast Holidays House of Mystery Hulk Human Target Improv Inspiration Intersect Invasion Invasion Podcast Iron Man Jack Kirby Jimmy Olsen JLA JSA Judge Dredd K9 the Series Kirby Motivationals Krypto Kung Fu Learning to Fly Legion Letters pages Liveblog Lonely Hearts Podcast Lord of the Rings Machine Man Motivationals Man-Thing Marquee Masters of the Universe Memes Memorable Moments Metal Men Metamorpho Micronauts Millennium Mini-Comics Monday Morning Macking Movies Mr. Terrific Music Nelvana of the Northern Lights Nightmare Fuel Number Ones Obituaries oHOTmu OR NOT? Old52 One Panel Outsiders Panels from Sheena Paper Dolls Play Podcast Polls Questionable Fridays Radio Rants Reaganocomics Recollected Red Bee Red Tornado Reign Retro-Comics Reviews Rom RPGs Sandman Sapphire & Steel Sarah Jane Adventures Saturday Morning Cartoons SBG for Girls Seasons of DWAITAS Secret Origins Podcast Secret Wars SF Shut Up Star Boy Silver Age Siskoid as Editor Siskoid's Mailbox Space 1999 Spectre Spider-Man Spring Cleaning ST non-fiction ST novels: DS9 ST novels: S.C.E. ST novels: The Shat ST novels: TNG ST novels: TOS Star Trek Streaky Suicide Squad Supergirl Superman Supershill Swamp Thing Tales from Earth-Prime Team Horrible Teen Titans That Franchise I Never Talk About The Prisoner The Thing Then and Now Theory Thor Thursdays of Two Worlds Time Capsule Timeslip Tintin Torchwood Tourist Traps of the Forgotten Realms Toys Turnarounds TV V Waking Life Warehouse 13 Websites What If? Who's This? Whoniverse-B Wikileaked Wonder Woman X-Files X-Men Zero Hour Strikes Zine