Monday, October 31, 2005

Halloween Game Sale - or not!

Game's massive Halloween sale being hyped before today began turns out to be quite a poor show. What a big disappointment. One game an hour and no really BIG reductions. Some forums were posting that games were actually cheaper on when you include the delivery costs.

Thursday, October 20, 2005

Resident Evil: Apocalypse

I've just watched this film, so can finally give you the verdict you've been waiting for. If you enjoyed Resident Evil, you'll probably like it. I like Resident Evil, so I thought it was OK. There are these two great women characters in Alice and Jill and there is something slightly subversive in how sexy they look and how they always top the men. The women are (of course) gorgeous and retain their femininity as well as their strength, as to be expected in a Hollywood film. It begins where the last film ended and takes the story on further. Like in the first film, there is a uneasy sense that nothing is explained satisfactorily - rather like in playing a videogame. The twisted, evil Umbrella Corporation is somehow behind it all (whatever "it" is) and it is still more or less a faceless entity. There are some great moments of slow motion action photography and some good stunts - very professionally done. The special effects are what I think people watch this kind of film for and they do not disappoint. For this reason alone it is worth watching more than once. That said, I didn't feel the zombie flesh eaters were particularly scary and this detracted a bit. I wasn't scared at all or made uneasy and in a way that's frightening - am I having my tolerance for violence and gore increased by continually being exposed to Hollywood-style versions of it?
There is a saying that there's only one thing worse than a game based on a film and that's a film based on a game, in this case I'd say that wasn't true but Resident Evil was a better film first time around. If you want to see a bad movie that fell out a game try The House of The Dead.

Tuesday, October 18, 2005

Firefox starring Clint Eastwood

Produced and directed by Eastwood too. I read the Craig Thomas novel of the same name recently and enjoyed it, the film was based on the book. I think it was a pretty accurate job, not difficult because the story is so good but with films like this there is obviously going to have to be some judicious editing because the narrative in the book can go into a lot more detail. On the whole I thought this was a cracking good film that stands up well to the test of time - it was released in 1982 I believe. Yeah, the models sequences at the end were a bit creaky - but that was the only thing I could criticise this for.

Imelda Marcos Musical

I read this with disbelief. My disbelief wasn't that Fatboy Slim (good candidate for the crappest name ever) was involved because I have no hesitation in passing by anything he has ever done with a blink of an eye but David Byrne? DAVID BYRNE for fucksake! What is he thinking of? I have no concept of why anyone would want to produce a musical about someone who is obviously so wrapped up in herself as Imelda Marcos. She and her husband behaved appallingly and it is difficult to see any merit in their lives at all that warrants a musical. Unless its about how stupid and fat they were but how they loved music. Hey, maybe that's what it's about - DON'T DO IT DAVID!!!!

Saturday, October 15, 2005

Library Snobs

I don't know what it is but some people I speak to have a disapproving view of multimedia in libraries. They look down their noses at people who don't use the libraries for books. I just think they're stupid people. For a start, our local library had a refurbishment paid for by money recouped from film and music loans. I'm convinced that the library budget is increased by loaning this type of material - not to mention it being a great source of making libraries relevant to all walks of life. So I say a big raspberry to all who look down on me as I stand with my books, CDs and DVDs in the library check-out desk.

House of the Dead (film)

I rented this out recently, my hopes weren't high and guess what? They weren't disproved. What a piece of garbage. Resident Evil was a videogame-film translation that actually worked. This one emphatically did not. HOTD is a textbook example of how to ruin a film. One of the things that infuriated me was using the slashing claw graphics from the game as part of a transition effect between scenes. It looked rubbish and was totally inappropriate. I rented the film because I liked the game and hoped that they developed a bit more of the story - I can't get very far in the game so this I thought was a way to watch the story. The story in the game and the story in the film are totally different. The game storyline is so much better, that should say it all really. Out of ten, this film would score minus numbers for me.

Saturday, October 08, 2005

Good Games Night (last night)

A heavy night of gaming. I got into Project Snowblind a little more, followed by Gran Turismo A-Spec in which I gained my driver's B licence, rounded off with Red Faction 2. All quite knackering but entertaining nonetheless.Project Snowblind is a fairly recent game and for me it really pushes what the PS2 can do. Red Faction 2 is a great game too but you can tell the difference in age between them.I saw Devil May Cry today and was tempted to buy but I resisted the temptation, mainly because (as my wife keeps telling me) i've got enough games.

Wednesday, October 05, 2005

James Bond 007

I was excited to see that Tomorrow Never Dies was on TV yesterday, I watched just over half but tiredness took over and I finally had to admit defeat and go to bed. The game James Bond 007: Everything Or Nothing has turned me onto Bond again, the concept of scoring points for "Bond moments" is particularly innovative. You see, I guess I've been a bit snobbish and have ignored Bond as being too formulaic and stunt-driven instead of well scripted stories with fast flowing pace and realistic action sequences (see The Transporter). The last Bond film I went to the cinema to see was The Living Daylights, which gets the thumbs down here - I remember it being quite nasty and violent. Timothy Dalton's Bond had likeable qualities but he probably didn't fit the Bond mould established by the other actors, I don't remember him being as much of a womaniser. The point of this is that I have started to develop some appreciation of the formula for Bond films, something the writer of this page seems to appreciate too. There are a few other Bond games out there: Tomorrow Never Dies, The World Is Not Enough, James Bond 007 in Agent Under Fire, James Bond 007: Nightfire, Goldeneye: Rogue Agent, 007 Racing and I see that a new game for PS2 is coming in November based on Sean Connery's From Russia With Love.

Saturday, October 01, 2005

Tom Clancy's Netforce

I watched Tom clancy's Net Force last night, I didn't know a film had been developed from the books. Infact, it turned out to be a tv mini series sold as a feature film on VHS. It wasn't awful actually, I wasn't expecting a lot but was pleasantly surprised. Don't get me wrong, some things just weren't right. Like the paramilitary outfits of some of the Netforce staff - black shirts, black berets, white polo necks and lots of leather. They looked like something out of a Man From Uncle film. I thought the theme of a millionaire IT entrepreneur (Will Stiles) bundling his company's web browser with a computer operating system to win a competitive edge and world domination was a little too obviously based on Bill Gates. I couldn't decide whether I liked the close association to real life or not. I'm surprised they got away with it without having their arses sued. The leading man wasn't bad but was a bit too laid back for my liking. The Cinema Club video sound quality wasn't great but I persevered. Aside from these things I was well entertained.