Thursday, March 15, 2018

Jessica Jones (S2), The Mummy (2017), and more Wonder Woman

Okay, so here's the thing, I know I'm not perfect, I am kind of unique, and I am a guy.  My reviews are going to be different, probably from most people, and definitely written from my own perspective.  Most of the time I write straight from my heart, and tell you guys how I feel about a movie, and sometimes I play Devil's Advocate to point out less-than-obvious flaws in an otherwise decent film, because those flaws bug me.  I'm an aspiring writer, you see, so when the writing behind a film bugs me, I point that shit out.  But, more on that later.  On to Jessica Jones season 2!

Jessica Jones is one of the lesser-utilized and under-appreciated superheroes from the Marvel Universe, whose story can be watched on Netflix.  Last season, Jessica had to deal with Kilgrave, some guy who really liked wearing purple suits, and could control people's minds.  Last season of Jessica Jones was pretty decent.  Jessica Jones's powers weren't outstanding (she couldn't go toe to toe with the Hulk, for example), but she might have been able to go a few rounds with Captain America.  This season, well...  let's just say Jessica doesn't spend a lot of time being her usual self.

Last season, Jessica was a bad ass, who didn't waste a lot of time over-thinking things, and tended to punch things that got in her way.  This season, Jessica is a loosely-threaded bag of emotions, and spends most of her time pretending to drink (she drinks a lot, but doesn't ever seem to suffer the effects of the alcohol, which might have been at least slightly amusing).  When she's not drinking and being all emo about shit, she's facing a rather disappointing series of challenges that really aren't much different from the ones any of us face in our daily lives.  Honestly, who wants to see normal people dealing with normal problems and being all whiny about it?  Blech.

Look, don't get me wrong, I think the lead actress (Krysten Ritter) is kinda cute, and I never get tired of watching that ass, but come on.  When I watch a superhero movie or series, I want to see superheroes doing superhero shit, and beating the crap out of supervillains.  My needs are small, that's all I want.  I don't want to see them spending the night in jail because they're not bullet-proof, and I don't want to see them hashing out legal problems with lawyers, and I cerainly don't want to see lawyers who are dying spend a few measly drunken hours with a bunch of prostitutes and then throw the poor working girls out when she turns back into the asshole lawyer she's been all along.  I don't care about lawyers.  There's never been a lawyer I care about, because lawyers don't care about anything but money.  Why splash a greedy, money-grubbing lawyer across the screen so much, when nobody goddamn cares?  Sorry to the actress who plays the lawyer (I want to say Carrie-Anne Moss?  Yep, that's her), but she plays her part so well that I just want the lawyer-y bitch to die already, so we can get back to the bad-guy punching.  Maybe they're setting the lawyer up to be the villain in season 3, but why do the villains always have to be dying to try and make us feel something for them?  Didn't they just pull that shit in Daredevil, or Iron Fist, or one of the other shows last year?  What's with the repetitious BS?  Also, why tf try to delve into Jessica's Origin story?  It was a crappy origin story!  Shoulda just left it alone, and moved the fuck on.

So, if you want my opinion, skip season 2 of Jessica Jones, and maybe wait for Season 3.  Nothing of any note really happens in Season 2, nothing whatsoever.  There's no cool villains, no cool superhero team-ups, shit, Rosario Dawson doesn't even show up to patch up Jessica's cuts and bruises.  So why watch it?  I dunno.  I was bored.  I think I finally figured out how they are going to fix the weak link in the Defenders, though.  They are systematically going to make all the other Defenders into weak little wussies, so that the whiny D-bag Iron Fist actually looks impressive by comparison.  Bad move, Netflix!  Bad move.  Then again, if it's not Netflix's fault, then bad move, Disney!  Hell, I don't know who's responsible for this crap.  Someone needs to pay.  Call in the Hulk.  HULK SMASH BAD SCRIPT!  Yes, Hulk, do it, big guy.  Smash bad script.

The Mummy (2017) is mostly about some D-bag named Nick Morton (Tom Cruise) futzing around the middle east until he runs across the Tomb of Ahmanet, some evil old princess-mummy who sliced and diced her dad and baby-half-brother, and wants to raise Set from the dead and turn the whole world into Undead servants.

Long story short, there's three major problems with the Mummy.  One, Tom Cruise.  Two, Russell Crowe.  Three, trying to shoehorn the story of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde (Russell Crowe) into a movie starring Tom Cruise.  Sure, there's lots of little problems with the Mummy, but let's stick with those three, because those are an easy fix.  You should have made Dr. Jekyll futz around with some of Ahmanet's blood at the END of the Mummy, and then her evil infects him and turns him into Mr. Hyde, instead of trying to cram Mr. Hyde into the middle.  ONE origin story per movie, please, IF you are going to do origin stories, which I generally dislike anyways.  NEVER do super-villain team ups until the supervillains are firmly established, with their own personalities.

Another small problem, just one that's bugging me.  Ahmanet's rule in ancient egypt was threatened by her father's getting a woman pregnant, so Ahmanet's chance at being pharoah is taken away.  So, she teams up with Set to become pure evil, and then..  basically kills the pharoah and his son with a dagger...  Which.. she could have done herself, without teaming up with Set.  So... why did she team up with Set, again?  Why's that make sense?  Don't ask me.  Stupid movie.

Universal (I think it's Universal?), listen up.  You really want to resurrect the Dark Universe, and bring back all the evil villains of old?  This was a bad start, but roll with it.  Run with what you got.  Take Tom Cruise, and Dr. Jekyll / Russell Crowe (sorry, I mean, Mr. Hyde), and just go ahead with the next movie, whatever you can come up with.  Do like the Steve Winwood song says, and Roll With It, Baby, yeah yeah, just roll with it!  You think Dr. Frankenstein would have finally managed to bring his Monster to life if he had plugged a car batttery into old Bolt-Neck, it hadn't worked, and he'd said "Fuck it?"  Keep at it, dipshits!  Keep plugging away until you get a heartbeat!  Take some fucking inspiration from the monster movies you're trying to resurrect!

The Mummy is playing on More Max this month, one of the Cinemax channels, if you want to check it out for yourself.  It wasn't absolute shit, but it was close.  The actress who plays the Mummy is decent, probably the best part of the film, but otherwise, there's not a whole lot there.  Maybe in time they'll make something better, like a new Werewolf, or Dracula flick.  Hey, maybe Creature from the Black Lagoon?  Anyone?  Anyone?  Bueller?  Anyone?

A little more about Wonder Woman, while I have time.  Wonder Woman has been a heroine to scores of young women since the 70's, and I don't want to diminish anyone's heroes.  We could certainly use more heroic figures these days, instead of all the villainous ones, amirite?  Yeah.  But hey, I believe in informed decisions, so let's take a look at the symbolism behind Wonder Woman, and what she stands for, shall we?  Spoilers to follow, so if you haven't seen the movie, watch it on HBO or whatever, and then come back here.  I'll wait.  Back?  Good, moving on.

First, Wonder Woman's early comic book days were spent in chains.  Literally.  The writer who penned her comic books was into Bondage and Discipline, and had a mistress as well as a wife.  They all lived together as one big happy family, and that's great, I say.  The early stories of Wonder woman usually revolved around getting captured by the villains, often getting spanked (she was usually powerless without her belt, bracelets and magic lasso), and being chained up.  Yep, those "magic bracelets" were actually just manacles at one point, I'm pretty sure.  At least, that's the story floating around the innertoobz, and just like everything else online, if it's on the internet, it must be true.

So, let's recap the major flaws in Wonder Woman, just to put a little logic to the symbolism.  Let's start with Hippolyta's tale of wonder woman's orgins, on the island of Thermiscrya, or whatever it's called.  Paradise Island, let's call it.  So, Hippolyta tells Diana that she was made of clay, and Zeus breathed life into her.  The first lie, but let's not quibble, Hippolyta is lying to wonder woman all her life (which makes me laugh that the Amazon's greatest weapon is a magic lasso that makes people tell the truth... irony can be pretty ironic, sometimes).  Hipployta's excuse is that Ares, their greatest enemy, will find her faster if she knows where she really came from, but what happens?  Diana, not knowing the truth, sets out from Paradise island, and within hours of setting foot on dry land, meets Ares.  yep.  HOURS.  Smooth Hippolyta.  Real smooth.

But hey, let's recap the origin story of story of Paradise Island, itself.  Ares killed all the other gods but Zeus, and Zeus used the "last of his power" (direct quote from Hippolyta) to wound Ares.  Paradise Island was hidden from Ares' sight to hide the Godslayer, a sword that could supposedly kill a god, but the sword is as much of a lie as the backstory of paradise island.  IF Zeus used the last of his power to wound Ares, how did he use his power to cloak paradise island?  What's the point of hiding a sword on an island, when Wonder Woman is the real godkiller?  What's the point of training an army of amazons, when the "greatest" of their warriors, who trained Diana, gets killed by a single bullet to the belly?  I mean, let's face it, how many germans went to the island?  40?  And they kill off half of this supposed "invincible" amazon army, that was supposed to help stop Ares?  Really?  No offense, ladies, but you died like bitches!  But let's move on.

So Diana goes to the real world, slaughters her way through an entire army of Germans, and uses the Godkiller to slay some pissant little German Colonel, who, as it turns out, SPOILER ALERT, wasn't Ares to begin with.  Sure, it's WW1, but Wonder Woman isn't a soldier.  She's a hero in the DC Universe, a hero like Batman and Superman and the Flash, and what is the one thing that Superman, the Flash, and Batman don't do?  THEY DON'T KILL.  Yep, multiple entire stories about these guys, revolve around them finding alternate ways of dealing with bad guys, other than killing them.  There was a whole two-hour cartoon I saw about Superman pretending to kill folks, just to scare the bejeesus out of some bad guys, to let you know Superman COULD have killed them, but didn't.  It's the one line they do their best not to cross.  The baddest, most powerful superheros in the DCU just will not kill.

Wonder Woman?  She hacks people to death with her sword, beats them to death with her shield, and collapses buldings on top of them.  She kills a General who she thinks is Ares, and when presnted with the evidence that he wasn't actually Ares, doesn't give a shit.  Nope, that can't be!  Wonder Woman is perfect!  No way did she kill the wrong guy!  Then Ares actually shows up, and how does she stop him?  With her "magic bracelets" given her to by her father.  And yes, she fucking kills him.  She kills a god.  Isn't that, I don't know, like the ultimate wrong?  Like killing jesus, or something? Hey, bad guy or not, people worshipped Ares.  Killing a god is killing a god, whether he was causing wars or not.  And when wonder woman is presented with the real culprit behind the most killings, the evil woman scientist who actually invented the gas that killed Steve Trevor, and thousands of innocents?  She lets her go!  WTF!

So, Wonder Woman is a spoiled-brat princess who disobeys her lying mother, is exiled from her homeland, falls in love with the first man she sees, and eventually kills her own half-brother, a god.  The only thing that really protects her from other men are the manacles (promise rings? remember the symbolism is important) her father gave her.  Then, does she go home, and tell the amazons "Hey, Ares is dead!  We're safe!"  Nope.  Fuck them, she's got more folks to kill.  Wtf wonder woman, aren't you a GOD now?  Of ALL the heroes in the DCU, aren't you the one who needs to kill the LEAST?  And what do you do the most?  You kill.  And this is the hero of the DCU?  Really?  Look, maybe this was the best movie that DC has put out so far, but the rest of the DC movies set such a low bar, that this isn't saying much.  So, sure, if you need a heroine, maybe wonder woman is your best bet, and maybe, I don't know, pick someone else?

That's all for now.  Other things to do.  :-)

2 comments:

  1. Nice rambling there. I was totally able to kind of follow your chain of logic! Keep up the good work, you're like a homeless guy yelling on the street about the end of the world and people like that are important these days! You're truly doing the Lord's Work! Good luck!

    P.S. I don't know if you noticed, but since you seem to be talking about the DCU explosively for the last part, keep in mind that Batman and Superman already killed people in their movies. So it's not really a big deal that Wonder chick did it too, ya know? They're just staying on brand.

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