Sunday, September 01, 2013

unclassifiable


Last week was a busy hot week in Texas, and this week maybe be a duplicate copy, with just different things to do.  But as I told my sister, I guess that's what life is all about.  I noticed that this month on TCM (Turner Classic Movies) that they will be showing various Alfred Hitchcock movies throughout the month, so if you are a fan of his films and want to try and catch one or two of them, you might want to head over to the TCM.com site and check their schedule.  This morning I taped Rope, which is about two wealthy men who are trying to create the perfect crime by murdering a friend (some friends, huh?),  and currently I'm taping Spellbound, where a psychiatrist tries to help the man she loves solve a murder buried in his subconscious.  Later on this Sunday night they'll broadcast The Birds and Psycho, if you are more into the horror genre.

I also noticed in this month of September, TCM will also be showing some other  SF and horror  films like:  Haxan, Metropolis, Escape From New York, Things To Come, Brazil, Battle in Outer Space by Inoshiro Honda, The Awful Dr. Orloff (which I've never seen or heard of before), and Bride of Frankenstein.  On Friday the 13th they have Soylent Green, Minority Report, Logan's Run, and Mad Max slated for showing.  At any rate, if any of films interest you or you are in the mood for some Hitchcock, you might want to check out the TCM schedule.









Also a couple of weeks back the local library had a small book sale and I picked up a few books,  one of them was Joe Hill's horror novel, Horns.  Joe is the son of Stephen King, and he seems to be following in his Dad's footsteps of writing, already establishing his name in the horror community.  I had to take a car in for some repairs as my handheld key fob had quit working the electric door locks, the dome light, and truck latch.  While waiting for them to put in a new module to correct the problem I read a few chapters of Horns.  So far so good.  It's about a young guy, Ignatius Perrish,  who wakes up to find he has horns growing out of the top of his head, but we also find out he is suspect for the murder of his past girlfriend.  Also it's hard to figure out if the horns are real or imaginary or he's cracking up, and it seems he also can read minds and put suggestions into other people's heads as well, all the while being hassled by the local cops.   As the novel unfolds a bit more I'm sure the book will reveal more about Ig and all his troubles. 

Hastings is a local chain store here locally, similar to Barnes & Nobles, and they had a graphic novel sale here, and I picked up the first collected  Hellblazer book, and also a pulpish superhero book called The Twelve by J. Michael Straczynski and Chris Weston, who handles the artwork.  I had collected Hellblazer for a while, but had sold off the first ten issues, if memory serves, and thought I might like to reread them lately.  If you've seen the movie Constantine (2005) with Keanu Reeves, it was based on the Hellblazer set of comics. 

Today after breakfast I got up and started sorting through a bunch of  recently acquired DVDs, and in tying in with the title to this blog entry I wondered which genre to classify them under?  For instance, Dark City, is sort of a noir SF story, but I guess it could also be classified under horror.  Krull is sort of an odd mixture of SF and fantasy.   Lifeforce is a mix of horror and SF, and The Road sort of falls within that same mixed category of SF/horror.  I think I'll just put them all in the SF section and make it work, but I can certainly understand some people's line of thinking just to order their media A thru Z without creating a genre for things.  It might make things easier, but I guess I can't get beyond classifications. 





Late Saturday night on the Cartoon Network  they broadcast Evangelion 2.22: You Can (Not) Advance, which I'd never seen before, but enjoyed it.  I'm not very familiar with that anime, and this may not be the best place to start, so I  would get lost in the storyline, but I knew just enough about it to follow along and enjoy the art.   It basically concerns giant robots in the mold of the Pacific Rim movie, and the characters would suit up in these giant robots to fight monsters, at least on the surface. But the anime also concerns the characters and the way they interact with each other, and how we need others in our lives to enhance living. Like some of the better anime the art was interesting, complex, and world building in a grand design. I hope they'll rebroadcast it so I can get a copy on VHS (yes, I still have one of those ancient devices). 

7 Comments:

At 4:32 PM, Blogger The Sci-Fi Fanatic said...

What? You still have a VHS for recording? Wow!? That is so funny and yet so cool.

Enjoyed your whole update El Vox, but just to mention regarding the Evangelion film.

Interesting you picked there to get a sense of what Evangelion is all about no doubt because it was on and I would as well. But I want you to know that I still need to see that film again.

These new films are an entirely divergent re-telling of the original series which, in my opinion, is far superior.

I actually was so excited to see this film and was so disappointed upon seeing it. It looks great but it wasn't nearly what I hoped for or expected.

I thought I would be open to a reinterpretation of the original series but I'm not so sure.

I actually, unlike many fans, enjoyed the first film quite a lot because it plays it relatively close to the original series episodes but with new animation.

This second film takes it off the rails and many like that because it is so different. Verdict is still out for me. I hope to write about it all one day. Cheers sff

 
At 8:26 AM, Blogger Roman J. Martel said...

Just to second what our pall the Fanatic said. :) I haven't seen the new EVA movies, but the clips I have seen look great. (and as long as Misato is still her beer drinking ass kicking self, I'll probably enjoy them).

But I strongly suggest you check out the television series from the 1990s. The art won't be as clean and polished, but the character and world design looks nearly the same. The characters are interesting, well developed and the slow build to the ending is great.

But the ending is where things will either kill the series for you, or intrigue you further. The ending really seems to split folks.

I get the feeling that may be why they decided to reboot the whole series - to create a more cohesive closure to the story. But I feel (and I'm pretty sure the Fanatic agrees) that the original ending of the 1990s series was cohesive, it was just presented in a challenging manner that required the viewer to put the pieces together themselves.

Anyway, even if the new movies get you interested in checking the whole thing out, they've done a good job. EVA is one of the best (if not THE best anime series of the 1990s).

 
At 8:31 AM, Blogger Roman J. Martel said...

Oh and one more comment. We dropped our dish service about a year ago to go straight to downoads on Netflix and Hulu. It was more affordable and we didn't watch much network television, so it was an easy switch.

I do miss two things, baseball coverage and TCM. I caught a lot of great films on TCM, stuff I couldn't have seen anywhere else. And when they did a sci-fi or horror month I became a regular watcher.

As for Hitchcock, well, one of my favorites is the thriller "Shadow of a Doubt". If they show that one, definitely check it out. Joseph Cotton is excellent in the film, and makes for the one of the most intriguing characters in the Hitchcock canon.

 
At 10:24 AM, Blogger El Vox said...

SFF--Yes, I just ran into the Evangelion 2.22 late at night, and sort of knew what it was about although not exactly where it fit into things, but later read it was a reboot. I have, however, added the TV series to my NF queue, and just bumped it up to the top for a comparison.

One fan from an anime site said this about the reboots: It has been remade and retooled as much as Star Wars has (if not more). These 4 movies are just the latest reach of Hideaki Anno's hand into my wallet. 3.33 is out in Japan only, or ENG fansub. The ENG dub will probably come out next year. 4.44 will probably go into Japanese theaters in November.

I doubt that a non fan of the original series Neon Genesis Evangelion (and everything that followed it) would get much out of the rebuilds.

As for me, since I'm new to the series, I'm sort of a blank slate and don't know what to think other than if the new reboot can garner more fans to the series I guess that's a good thing (at least for the creator). That's sort of how I feel about the new Dr. Who series. I'm not a fan of most of the newer series, I particularly have disliked the Matt Smith era, and Tennant wore out his welcome pretty quickly as well. For me the newer Dr. Who got sillier, and some of the stories were just bad imo. But some people found them interesting.

 
At 10:35 AM, Blogger El Vox said...

Roman--I actually had thought about doing something similar as far as dumping cable. If I lived near enough to a large metro area I would. I can still get the major stations: CBS, ABC, NBC, but the killer for me would be loosing PBS. I'm a fan of so many of their shows I'd go into withdrawal :)

At least with TCM you could go to their schedule and see what they are showing & if it looked interesting Q it to NF for a watch. However, TCM will show a few things that are OOP or non- available. But you have to weigh expense vs. utility.

Like you I don't watch a lot of network TV, and really not too huge a sports fan, though I'll watch some football (pro & college). Oh by the way, TCM did show, Shadow of a Doubt, which I got a copy of. And later that night they showed the silent film, The Lodger.

 
At 5:02 PM, Blogger The Sci-Fi Fanatic said...

Guys,

You are both always a pleasure to converse with. Just so you know.

Looking forward to football as well.

I'm coming back a little late but I'm thrilled you have both had a chance to comment further.

I agree with everything Roman had to say. In fact, I definitely think it's THE best anime of the 90s and perhaps ever, but that all-encompassing ever is subject to a little more debate I suppose.

I do like the endings on the series too as you mentioned Roman. And of course the movies (not the reboot ones El Vox but rather two films called Death & Rebirth and The End Of Evangelion).

Also, Roman is absolutely right, the animation is excellent and really still holds up remarkably well today. I think I treasure it even more as it seems to capture Gainax at the height of their abilities in the hand drawn realm which I actually prefer.

So do check out Evangelion and let us know what you think sometime.

And lastly just to touch on El Vox comments. Interesting.

I have seen others comment on Doctor Who as being a little silly at times and I understand exactly what they/ you mean. I like it enough but there's a lot to be said for the raw and gritty work of those Tom Baker years where much was left to the imagination.

The new stuff definitely has its pros and cons just like the old series.

Cheers guys. All the best.

 
At 8:51 AM, Blogger El Vox said...

SFF--thanks for the comments. I queued Neon Genesis Evangelion Platinum Vol. I & it's on the way, I guess I should get it by this weekend, which will be great. I've been programmed to celebrate Saturday nights now as SF Saturdays, that it should fit right in.

The Platinum edition Vol. 1 has six disc from the way it looks. I just added Death & Rebirth and The End of Evangelion to the queue as well. Thanks.

I love the old Dr. Whos, and Tom Baker would have to be my favorite regeneration of the character, though I really enjoy the others from that era. But Tom Baker was the one I first bumped into on TV many years ago (I think it was the ep. Robot), and seems the most nostalgic for me. With the advent of NF, I've been rediscovering them too as some of the disc have added features, which are really fun to watch in addition to the cleaner picture on DVD. Cheers.

 

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