The Red Pill Documentary Review

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Written by William Rhys Wortham

Over the past few years the classic “war between the sexes” rose to new heights with more protests and feverish defending from both sides. One side screams that they are oppressed and the other cries even louder. Then nothing happens and it comes up a few years later, oh freaking joy. So, this decade, the Men’s Rights Activists have fully formed and bemoan about everything possible in this documentary.

I’ve always failed to see the blatant hatred for this group. They are not any different than the feminists, when you think about it. One person gets hurt and then swears off the opposite sex, or they think they need to take action in order to fix something. It’s odd that they don’t both wake up and realize the real enemy: terrible people. Cruelty knows no sex, age, race, or class. Their tragedies aren’t mutually exclusive! If they joined forces they might be able to find more workable solutions rather than jump to conclusions and fussing.

Sometimes it surprises me that a documentary needs to be made for some people to understand an opposing view. Most groups are very blunt about their needs. MRAs needs spell them out for you, just like many non-profit organizations. What they are about shouldn’t be perplexing. It’s easy to reach negative stereotypes of any group, including feminists, but denying peoples basic human needs, and understanding, is asinine. With that having been said this documentary did put most feminists in a bad light, because they ignored everything MRAs were saying at all the protests or issues brought up in the interviews. I’ll give them credit that some might not have been well informed. Regardless, they continually jumped to negative stereotypes that had nothing to do with the issues raised.

There were repeat times when MRAs would cite why they were angry and then interviewed feminists who relied off of old rhetoric, that wouldn’t be applicable to most modern people. Two feminists continually deferred to men being intimidated by women in the work place and they feared losing power. Its queer considering most issues that were talked about were about men being physically, sexually, socially, and financially abused. Two instances brought up involved a woman who blatantly baited their partner into having a child and told him that they would use the child against him. Also, I don’t know about any of you but the only people I’ve known that were distressed about “losing power” were politicians or psychopaths, and sometimes there isn’t that much of a difference between the two. Most relationships, of any kind, should be built upon communication, commitment, and compromise, not who’s ‘wearing the pants’, sane people realize this.

Eventually a feminist would bring up white nationalism seemingly out of nowhere. I don’t see how the MRAs are a white nationalist movement when it’s the name is MENS Rights Activists, not White Men Only Rights Activities. On top of that nowhere in their guidelines does it say they are about white supremacy. It’s a weak analysis and I would have appreciated if they applied themselves to doing some research.

Despite all the good points there was a lot that confused me about this documentary. They mentioned the death statistics for men during war and the work place; well there are only two choices, men and women. What do you expect? There isn’t much of a sample size, so it’s one or the other! Then it brings up Warren Farrel who mentions a social concept behind men sacrificing themselves (i.e. being sent off to war) to save women. This is a basic part of sociology, there is always a sacrifice to protect, and save, a civil society, I’m not sure what he expects. I don’t expect the average 5’2” woman to go up against a 6’5” enemy behind enemy lines. It should tell you something when 85% of women FAIL combat training. No offense to women, but it’s about the safety of everyone and during war times the military will need the best of the best. This brashness will exclude many physically inept men as well. Why they complain about ‘dying’ for their women and children is overly dramatic, when to quote George S. Patton “The object of war is not to die for your country but to make the other bastard die for his.”

Eventually they threw in one of the crazier feminists named Jackson Katz. Some his theories are so obtuse it makes me wonder if he’s mentally ill. One of his worst theories is that horror films encourage men to murder women. It blatantly removes any kind of notion that men have a sense of self control, empathy, nor any kind of sense of right or wrong. Why they included someone as deluded as him, that didn’t add anything to the conversation, is beyond me.

It eventually seeped into global politics and they brought up Boko Haram. They mentioned a group who kidnapped boys, murdered them, and then groan about how the global news media didn’t report on it heavily. I’m not sure why the information is considered so shocking considering they don’t recognize where their news is coming from. Bad things happen in 3rd world countries. Yes, it should be a concern, but it should be less impactful considering the environment breeds heinous acts like these nearly all the time. They will not have the same values, or laws, in third world countries as they do in first world ones. You can’t expect to find good things in bad places.

The film concludes with a very stern message that men don’t have it so easy. The research was there and fleshed out, so I doubt it leaves much to the imagination. It does leave room for debate, considering there were many things left out, but its interesting nonetheless. I’d say see it if you are clueless about these issues or are just interested in what someone else says. If you hate politics, or the war between the sexes, then skip it.

7.0/10

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Jackie Brown Movie Review – 1997

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Crime, Drama, Thriller

Year: 1997
Creator(s): Quentin Tarantino
Starring: Pam Grier, Samuel L Jackson, Robert Forester

Mild Spoilers

Written By: William R Wortham

Most crime dramas are good examples of plausible real life cruelty and psychological extremes. Flicks like L.A. Confidential are good psychological pieces on both criminals and corruption, and often based off true events. Jack Brown is a boring film about people randomly smattered about with a predictable ending. Oddly enough if you want to skip seeing a majority of the film just read the synopsys of this, because you aren’t missing much. Compessing every scene and character development into one paragraph is pathetic. Yet, somehow, this films seems to do this with great ease.

It’s a very cut and dry detective story that leaves nothing to the imagination. Max Cherry (Robert Forster) is a standard PI whos’ approched one day by Jackie Brown. After some flash backs and very long drawn out scenes things will slowly develop. I found a lot of them totally uninteresting because they were worthless converstations about generic things. This sours any kind of story development by distancing emotionally impactful scenes with scattered scenes. The whole point of a film is to keep people guessing, not drag things out beyond developmental archs.

One of the more tedious moments was when one of the side characters dies. It didn’t build drama well, and considering how shallow the characters are it was easy to predict. Common sense would have behooved many in this film and its like they blantantly ignored all of it. Unlike Hitchcock where you can’t see whats going on or its left up for grabs as to what happened, many scenes don’t do much to convey any emotion. It’s very blunt and the rest of the shots throughout the movie are the exact same.

All the characters are one-dimensional, with most of the character development basically summerized in a few minutes. This works for some movies, but it kills it for me when the top 5 main characters are as deep as a puddle. I can’t care about characters who are so predictiable and who lack any form of intelligence. Many in the film are more emotionally driven rather than by any kind of logic. Most gangster films involve smart criminals who get away with things due to subtle dialoge and cohersion. This had none of that.

On a postive note, for a Tarantino film, it’s totally out of the norm. Its lacking in huge amounts of gore and blood, unlike most of his films. In Pulp Fiction, no one was really a good guy or bad guy. Everyone was equally selfish, and eventually met a brutal end. Jack Brown is one of the few that ends on a high note and it might please some audiences. All of the characters, even though boring, were a lot less over the top compaired to his other movies.

I don’t know if I can recommend this movie, or hate it either. It was really well shot and everyones performances were up to snuff. Underwhelming scenes, a guessable story, and underdeveloped characters kill the rest of the film. If you want something simply written with farmiliar faces watch this film. I would skip it if you hate things that are completely banal.

4.5/10

Maggie Movie Review

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A large trend in cinema that has turned most people off to the horror genre is zombies. Yes, zombies. Love them or hate them they are here to stay. However, with any genre it has a possibility of going stagnant. There’s only so many times the general audience can see a cannibalistic undead person eat a puppy before it gets boring. Meanwhile, others out there will skip it all together for anything else. Which is kinda why I’m reviewing Maggie. This is a cross between a zombie movie and a family tragedy movie.

Unlike most zombie scenarios the world doesn’t completely collapse once they show up. In Maggie a rather refreshing approach was taken. The various governments around the world declare a forum of Martial Law and require everyone to be tested and treated. The intro, and everything that follows, I believe is a more realistic approach. There are a few instances in the movie where it shows people coming to terms with the death of their friends, or family, and learning to deal with it. To me this makes more sense since zombies are stupid and slow. So I couldn’t see a fast paced world ever be over thrown by a bunch of decaying freaks. So I kinda enjoyed this different take on this horror genre.

I could see that it was trying to push tragic themes into the audiences head, like movies about cancer. The only difference is that its about a disease that turns people into face eaters. So I kinda felt detached from it and the impact was lost. I felt it was less serious at some points then it could have been. The characters also developed different ways in dealing with the onset illness. Most were grizzly and it added to the overall impact of the situation. A kind of slow sorrow is felt throughout the film despite it being unevenly paced.

The major downfall to this movie is it’s pacing. Yes some of it does add to the theme of “the world is dying,” but it like all zombie movies after a while it’s like “we get it.” The random burning cars and torn apart houses get old after a while. Sure it could just be the background, but a lot of the scenes wouldn’t even involve the characters but random wreckage. These slow scenes kinda disrupt the pacing of the characters development, which other wise are well rounded. This doesn’t add much to the story and to a certain extent I think took away from good areas in the film where they could have simply done something else.

Oddly enough some slow scenes highlight a lot of the actors better abilities. It showed a good dramatic side to Arnold Schwarzenegger, which is rarely scene. Abigail Breslin is back to displaying her best skills as a girl who struggles with the fact that she’s slowly dying. Joely Richardson does a great job of being a cold hearted mother and compliments Schwarzenegger’s meandering about his daughters health. The bit characters do a decent job at adding tension to the film, but are only lost because of how quick they are introduced and then discarded.

Hopefully this will add some variety to the genera. For the tragedy buffs out there, you’ll probably love this. For the zombie fans, well, avoid it. There isn’t that much gore or cannibalism involved. In other words, it lacks action and the adventure elements that are usually in zombie films. The emotional turmoil of the family is enveloping and will draw most to the film. The heartfelt look into deaths in the family is something I hope most writers will consider for future movies in this genre. It’s a decent sad film, but I probably won’t be watching it again since it’s like seeing a rerun of fireworks: you know where the explosions are going to happen and fizzle out.

6.0/10

This American Life (TV Show Review)

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Most TV shows hook people with repetition. The Walking Dead gets their audience emotionally attached to a dumb luck person in a zombie apocalypse and then kills that person a few episodes later, or teases it. Things like Breaking Bad intrigue people because it’s terrible people doing terrible things to each other and, lets face it, most people aren’t anything like those involved. So to say the least: repeating the same things hasn’t ever appealed to me. So, I usually lose interest in TV shows and fall behind in whatever the latest social craze is about.

This American Life’s only repeat theme, so far, is their dedication to telling people’s lives through their own words. They record them for a few days. They interview them for a brief time. Then it’s wrapped up with a brief outcome of that segment of their life. It might sound boring, but the major difference is the types of lives people live and their struggles through common issues.

Most stories are uplifting or give some good insight into just other aspects of life that most wouldn’t be aware about. Like they interviewed the first man to get a genetic clone, but it was of his pet bull. You know? The thing with big horns? It showed how they basically struggled with the mortality, and reality, of their dead pet. Which lead into a episode called Escape. It was about a boy, now a man, who slowly loses all of his normal motor functions due to a rare terminal illness. The fellow struggled with his thoughts, family relations, talking, eating, trying to go for a walk, etc. It was nothing short of completely heart breaking.

The episodes flow seamlessly together and embody something grand; the enduring human spirit. Even if you find yourself not caring about what the people are talking about, or are irritated, it still explains in depth as to why they are the way they are and how they became that way. The attention to detail is finite and gives enough to explain how these issues are important to people. Like in the second season a couple started fighting over lawn care. I thought “well just mow the lawn and shut up.” Then they explained how it was for this man, who viewed something as simple as grass and how certain European influences dissuaded him from ever wanting to touch the lawn. I did find it kinda boring, but the insight was rather deep.

There are a lot of beautiful stories in This American Life. Then, at the same time, there’s a lot of oddities that make me just wonder “why?” Why are these people like this? Why are these people so stupid? Why are these two still together? Why do they do this to themselves? Then I remembered: because people are different. This show highlights the differences, the tragedies, their hopes, and everything in between. It’s a fantastic voyeuristic view into the thoughts, minds, and hearts of many while taking no punches at the people involved. Many of the stories will linger and others will quickly be forgotten like a bad day at work. Regardless this has great insight into the human adventure that is the modern day life.

Please watch at least a few episodes before making a judgment. It’s a trench of empathy that is endlessly captivating.

9.0/10
This American Life show is available on Showtime and Amazon Prime.

The radio show is available for free at This American Life.org.

Saints Row: Gat Out of Hell PS3 Review

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WARNING: SPOILERS

In continuation of the over the top antics and storyline the Saints Row crew throw a Birthday party for the resident nerd, Kinzie Kensington. They find out she hasn’t ever had a birthday party before, people are only mildly surprised, and then they break out the cake, generic fun party stuff, and a spoof of a Ouija board. They start asking the board a bunch of questions and it somehow opens a portal to Hell. It sucks the President of the United States of America in and then immediately closes itself. Everyone gets pissed and Johnny Gat and Kinzie Kensington volunteer to go rescue him.

So right off they take the two worst characters of the series and make them the lead characters. Yes, Matt Miller might be a ugly looking dork who’s possibly closet gay and obsessed with a shitty TV series, but at least he has personality. Kinzie Kensington is the kind of nerd that most nerds ignore, because she’s for lack of a better vocabulary: one dimensional. While most people can talk about other things that aren’t their job and live a normal life, Kensington lacks that ability. Same goes for Johnny Gat. His major characteristic is talking about killing people, and then does some killing of the aforementioned people. Seeing how everyone in most of video gaming history has this ability I don’t see why that makes him so special.

Despite this crappy note I liked most of the story that was actually told. Sure it’s a little slap dash, but a lot of the humor is still there. It has a bit of a mundane feeling since its all more of the same kind of either story or gameplay but I at least liked the ambiance of Hell and all the details added to the world. One of the major things I didn’t care for is the feeling that they either left content out or just flat out stopped caring. One major things I always do in sandbox games is take over the town, when able. This is a feature in most of the series and you get a few good perks from shops because of this. In other games like GTA you can even buy houses in areas you’ve taken over. Anyway, when you hit 100% it transfers back to the storytelling version of cut scenes. It’s where one of the main characters opens a ugly children storybook with the Saints Row symbol on it. She then flips through the pages of the book and basically reads it to you with really elaborate art pieces. It goes on for about 30 minutes and gives a dozen or so things anyone could get hyped about. Now instead of letting you play out those things, which would have added lots of depth to your relationship with the members of Hell, tells you how everything happens, rather then you being apart of it. It tells you how a fight unfolds between your group vs. whoever and how they reside in hell now. It’s a complete cop out of game play and some possible good story missions.

The graphics are the standard and good enough for the gameplay. The only fancy elements were the constant drips or raining lava. There were the occasional glitches, but nothing serious. Once I had to restart the game because I was wall climbing and got stuck in the building. Its like I could walk around the interior of the building if it was made entirely of two way glass. Also the freezing glitch, that stopped the game completely, was remedied in this version. Although there were major sound issues. Many times when I’d snag one of the audio collectibles it would get about half way through what it was saying and then just cut out. Then it would be pure silence for the next few moments or you’d switch back to the aerial sounds of Hell and generic music. It also had trouble playing anything in the background while I grabbed one. A few times I’d have someone shotting at me or I’d be on fire and the audio would block everything out and just focus on the collected audio.

All of the previous power ups from SR4 are available in this game as well. You can still run up walls, throw ice/fire/darkness/whatever, send minions to do your bidding, and power stomp the ground. They only improved those marginally. The only addition they included was the ability to fly, but it’s kinda lacking since its more like gliding. They explain that Satan got it from somewhere and Blackbeard stole it, but I don’t remember much after that. Also the variety of weapons they included embody the 7 deadly sins. Most of them are either A) obnoxious or B) already in the game in some form. Like the Ark of the Covenant gun is suppose to represent Wrath. It sucks in enemies and shoots them out in a explosion. Cool, but the stomp power up already sucks enemies in, crushes them, and some explode. When ya think about it it’s not really too great add more collectibles that do the same thing. It makes neat combos, but again, useless when you’re super empowered and killing everything was rather easy.

The final fight with Satan was hideously disappointing. It basically consisted of him disappearing and reappearing in a certain time frame, or essentially a flashy version of peak-a-boo. Sure he hit you with everything he had, but if you’re anything like me, you’ve already gotten every special hidden power up or gun and the health bar becomes a joke. Sure this series is all about empowering, over empowering?, the player, but we’re fighting Satan for fucks sake!!! The master of darkness, the evil of all evil, etc. He could have been at least a little bit scary or intimidating. I mean Satan is cartoonie in other productions, but he still had a feel of intimidation in some way.

This ‘DLC’ was both disappointing and refreshingly strange. While it didn’t add anything new gameplay wise however the level(s) and artistic interpretation of hell was fun, funny, and really damn detailed. While I hate collectibles, the commentary was funny at points and added some depth to the world. The rest of the story was just meh. The musical fairy tale style of story telling was disjointed. It often interrupted by actual cut scenes that felt a lot more serious then the many of the cut scenes. Yeah all the fun parts are there: the running, the shooting, the huge explosions, but it really really feels like one of their writers just said “FUCK IT!” and stopped writing , or caring, at some point about telling more of the story. So it really does feel weirdly incomplete.

If you want something really abstract, even for this series, then try this out. Otherwise I’d be weary of it.

6.0/10

Kingsman: The Secret Service

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WARNING: Mild Spoilers

Harry Hart owes a life debt to a fallen friend, Lancealot, whilst working for a socially elites group of people who are Britain’s best undercover spies called: Kingsmen. They all take names from King Arthers fairy tales, and some even exude qualities of their mythical counter parts. Regardless, Gary “Eggsy” Unwin grew up as a social delinquent. He eventually gets arrested and calls on the Kingsmen to get him out of trouble. They do and decide to recruit him for their undercover training program.

I consider most British comedies wittier then most American comedies due to well placed sight gags or very well crafted dialogue. This one lacked in some areas on good gags and smarm, but it made up for with well crafted crass humor. Colin Firth played the straight man to Taron Egerton‘s young and foul mouthed teenager. Many examples can be seen in the various trailers out there. Other times its simple pokes at American stereotypes or in your face violence. Oddly enough I found myself snickering at some of the violent scenes involving a racist church group they eventually investigate. Other times it was at the blatant references to just about every other spy film ever made while still trying to formulate a ironic style of humor while still honoring the genera.

I didn’t care for the film’s jumbled development. Many times Taron Egerton’s character jumps between lovable dumbass to killing machine back to being a arrogant prick. You’d think after months of training he’d know how to do something simple like open a parachute. Also the anti-US American undertones were a tad obnoxious. They were consistent and only seemed to be berating the ‘evil corporate American companies are trying to kill you’ lunacy that seems to plague every other story now-a-days. Also it isn’t plausible that one of the crucial parts of the story involves mass genocide and all the billionaires in the world just being OK with it. Because once society has toppled what good is their money? Who will run their power plants or make their food? Oh wait. No one will, because everyone is DEAD. There’s a definite spike between different styles of humor after a main character dies. In the beginning it’s a mixture of mellow, wit, wry, and crass humor. After the main character dies then it becomes oafish and pure crass. It isn’t that its too jarring, but it’s REALLY noticeable. So if you think all of a sudden the jokes become crappier then thats just letting you know you’re near the end of the movie.

Colin Firth was decent as a stern sophisticated person without giving into his past experience with roles. Mark Strong played a good guy for once and while not showing a lot of strength in anything he did seem to know how seem convincing he was a master of all trades. Mark Hamill is a bumbling professor and plays it rather well. It’s different since he usually plays a stronger male role, even as a villain. Taron Egerton was good as a jackass, but most of his acting was reactionary due to the script so I don’t think it’s a good example of his acting. Samuel L Jackson was great as the villain, but it seemed like he needed to tighten up some areas and be a little more aggressive or assertive. Other wise he was rather good and made someone with a lisp rather creepy.

Most spy films that try to be comedies fail by hiring writers who don’t know how to blend the two genera or the comedy becomes too experimental. This was a nice balance of everything without having one genera overpower the other. The characters were likable, even if mildly cliché. The story might be bland to some people, but how everything is set up separates it from the rest of the genera. Kingsman might not go down as a comedy classic, but it will definitely be brought up in conversation frequently.

See it in theaters.

7.5/10

Hot Tub Time Machine 2 Movie Review

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WARNING: SPOILERS

In the long slew of gross out movies that Rob Corddry and Craig Robinson seem to be fond of making this is probably their darkest yet. The crew from the previous film is back, with exception to Adam (John Cusack), and are shoved into the future. There they try to find out what happens to Lou (Rob Corddry) and why people are trying to kill him. As they bumble about they run into a few new faces and they find out that his life, as well as a few others, are completely in shambles.

Now usually some sequels either extend the series or do a good job at filling all plot holes. This successfully only adds more plot holes and leaves the previous ones unanswered. They only briefly bring back Chevy Chase‘s character (the Hot Tub Repairman) for two sentences and then disappears again. Thus not answering why he’s there nor how he can just come and go as he pleases. They joke about Cusack‘s character disappearing and then don’t explain why. Then they form new plot holes like why Lou decided to become a jerk again since at the end of the previous movie he seemed rather generous with his friends and liked his son. So he went from loud lummox of the group, to being the most immoral person in the film. It’s suggested he slept with peoples wifes and did more drugs then before with reason as to why and would verbally abuse his coworkers. They also bring up Adam Jr (Adam Scott) who is suppose to be Adam’s son, but don’t explain that well.

The crux of any comedy is the jokes. They deviated from the previous formula they had and make just about every joke darker or gross. One of the grossest scenes in the movie highlights the slow moral degrade of most TV game shows, but it takes it too far when they do more then imply possible forced sexual acts. It ruined the latter half of the movie for me since it made me wonder if I heard sounds of rape or just someone who was grunting in pain due to a lot of electricity flowing through their body. Other times they are just hating on Jacob (Clark Duke) and it isn’t funny because most of it is from Lou and he has no room to talk. It’s a total oxymoron for someone who has poor impulse control to throw shade about his son who’s just hasn’t found himself yet.

Hot Tub Time Machine 2 wasted a movie going experience by rehashing the previous storyline. With the small, and ignorable plot holes, of the previous movie were only exasperated in the fact that they were brought back up with stupid dialogue, and just as quickly dismiss. Then sprinkle some very disgusting humor and offset it with other forms of humor and it makes them feel largely incongruous. Quality doesn’t seem to mean anything this time since the jokes are guilty of being average or bland. None of the characters developed any and even at the end they are only slightly less crass. So it seemed like a fruitless endeavor for them.

I’d wait for this one on DVD before thinking about seeing it.

5.5/10

Bioshock Infinite: The Complete Edition PS3 Video Game Review

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WARNING: MAJOR SPOILERS

You are Booker DeWitt a private investigator for hire. You’ve been sent to a city in the sky called Columbia that has succeeded from the United States of America and is run by a man named Zachary Hale Comstock. Somewhere in the city he’s holding a woman named Elizabeth. The mysterious client states that if you bring her back, he’ll wipe away all of your gambling debt.

I originally didn’t want to review this game because it has been done to death. Everyone who hasn’t lived under a rock, or granite like substance, has noticed this game and give it perfect score. I liked the first one and is probably one of the better FPSs of its time. The originals story stood out as being completely depressing and at that time it was different because it didn’t make you a completely infallible person. Also its gripping seeing as you’re trapped between two douches fighting for a city in total chaos and all you’re trying to do is figure out why you’re there and how to freaking get out alive. The continued mystery and noir themes would build tension throughout the game without making it feel suffocating.

This takes the same premise as the first one. You’re some average bloke who can’t remember anything and goes to a mysterious place to look for answers. Sound familiar!? Good, because there are very few changes. They have their wacky characters that are entertaining, possibly incestual, but most either not explored enough or you end up killing them. This, like the previous one, has a lot of gray characters instead of being absolute good or bad, like most FPSs. This one takes a bit of a chipper tone since its colored as a racist southern version of Disneyland. It was neat to walk amongst the city, and it’s citizens, before everything was thrown into pure anarchy mostly due to their own stupidity.

The beginning was good. It took the ‘damsel in distress’ story and warped it to make her more then just a powerless girl. In fact it alluded that she might be some kind of God-like creature. Anyway, it blunders about and introduces allies and villains in awkward ways. Like I had to look for a power up in one location that was ruled over by a local gang. The only option was to go in and kill them all. So the only purpose for them to be in the story was to guard that single power up. I thought this was a bit of a waste since they were a kinda gray group (morality wise) who only wanted to be recognized for their deeds. So much more could have been developed with them and instead they were killed off really early. Then one group was introduced, they steal your stuff, and then try to kill you later despite helping them out. This irritated me because they knew you had a time traveling girl on your side. It shouldn’t surprise them if you ‘come back from the dead.’ Also they seem to flip flop on agreements with little to no warning. It’s just stupid plot twists that had me rolling my eyes a lot.

I really don’t like that I have to give this game a low score because everything was going swimmingly up until the games ending. The ending really ruined it for me. It reminded me of several 1970s sci-fi films where the good guy is somehow a alternate time version of the bad guy. In this case DeWitt if he seeks forgiveness in one reality he becomes a racist stereotype of the south and builds Columbia. If he doesn’t, in some alternate universe, he does fuck all till he gets a invitation from someone to go find Elizabeth. So in other words he becomes the villain in one universe and in the other he’s a completely depressed alcoholic in another. I don’t have any problem with the second outcome. However our wondrous dumbfuck Elizabeth does.

So as the ending roles it’s kinda open to interpretation so I can only tell you what I got from it. She basically explains that’s shes a time traveling omnipotent God like entity who can see different universes, times, and can see how everything happens. She basically leads DeWitt in believing everything happens the exact same way, in every universe, and he has no choice but to do the same stuff over and over again. This is bullshit if you’ve read anything about time travel EVER! She says everything repeats itself until he figures out what needs to be done. Eventually it strikes him that in order to prevent all the future tragedies he needs to kill Comstock at birth. So he asks her to help him kill the guy. She brings him back to some open void in time and lets him know he’s Comstock and DeWitt and in order to destroy a possible bad future she has to kill him.

I thought this ending was total and utter crap. If she wanted to prevent a ‘bad future,’ for other people, that meant she would eventually have to kill everyone else too to stop them from possibly becoming corrupt power hungry maniacs. Also if she is some kind of time traveling entity then she could have easily manipulated any instance in time to her, or societies, advantage. NOPE! Instead she, and her very narrow perspective on it all, choses to jump through time and universes to kill this same guy over and over again, regardless if he turns out to be a good guy or not. This is pretty much is what’s theorized at the end when multiple versions of herself show up. Instead of going through time, or other universes, and fixing things she has a fetish for killing this one guy over and over again.

On top of that it’s the most drawn out and pretentious thing imaginable. Instead of doing the simple thing and putting a bullet in his head and moving on, tear a spot in time and turning his brain into pudding, or letting him get killed by someone in Columbia, but she doesn’t. She instead goes all out theatrical and drags everything out so long that it makes the player wonder if everything, even Columbia, was intentionally setup to trap this one guy. She has him relive everything in Columbia (all the fighting, clue finding, tragedy, etc.) and holds this long elaborate plot to show him how guilty he should feel. In turn this makes him feel bad and she opts to kill him. She’s a fucking sadist in my opinion. If you download the DLC Burial At Sea then you’ll see that she jumps into another dimension and goes out of her way to kill him all over again. So not only does she lack a moral compass, but she lacks common sense, is exceedingly lacking self control, but on top of all that she has no fucking clue what she’s doing.

The only good things about this game is the gameplay and graphics. The gameplay is just like the last and has a lot of features added to it. It’s taken the FPS format and added battlemage capabilities. This means you basically play as mixture of warrior and wizard style of combat. You have a gun in your right hand and use your left to cast spells. This adds some great combos and make some of the tougher battles a little more strategic.

There’s a lot of variety in both strategy and kill combos. Everything can be upgraded, except DeWitt and Elizabeth. The only addition that is noteworthy is the clothing. Some areas have clothes that can give you special abilities. It’s a nice perk, but unless it’s something outside normal gameplay (like the shield) then most aren’t noticeable when being worn. Like one piece of clothing lets you run super fast after you lose 50% of your life for about 5 seconds. The only added ability that I didn’t care for was the shield. It seems to be gone after 2 hits most of the time and then health, ammo, and salts are nearly everywhere you turn so if they are going to try to make things so piss easy why bother with a shield at all, especially if it’s gone after a few hits? Also there is a hook rail system that you can jump on to run away from enemies. I found this obnoxious because it made it difficult to aim at anyone and other then some linear story progression it’s mostly useless.

Another bonus is Elizabeth acts as a companion that actually does something, other then die or get in the way. In combat she’ll throw you health, ammo, and salts to help keep you alive. The odd thing is that th AI completely ignores her. There were many times when she was crouched down behind a crate and the enemies went around her side to get to me. I thought that it was strange that there wasn’t any interaction her since the whole town was seeking me out to A) kill me and B) return the girl to her tower. Even if I did die in a heated battle she’d somehow drag me to the side and revive me, for a price. Again, she either did this ‘unnoticed’ or the enemies ignored her.

The graphics are probably a example of the best the PS3 can offer. The bloom is proportioned nicely throughout the game, it gives characters shadows on their face, and adjusts as characters walk. The animations break some of the immersion because they really aren’t expressive outside of cut scenes and give some dramatic dialog a jejune delivery. There were rarely any hangups while rendering the game. The few that did seem to glitch were light rendering errors. Other times it would seem to want to freeze the screen and load for no apparent reason. For example: it would take only a short time to load the game and then when you moved to another area on the same map it sometimes would popup saying it was loading, but not show the stagnate loading screen. Other then that they did a great job making the characters both look kinda cartoonie and lifelike.

This is probably the worst of the series to me. It takes old sci-fi stories from the 1970s and beats it like a dead horse till you see it’s bones. The cliché contrived betrayals happen, the good guy is secretly the bad guy or the other way around, blatant bad guy stereotypes are used a lot, and then it has you reflect on the previous two Bioshock games. Sure it’s fun, fast paced, and has a lot of the game play elements, and more, of the previous two for everyone to enjoy, but I hate this story.

If you want something that has good gameplay then buy this, just try your best to ignore the story.

3.0/10

 

Seventh Son Movie Review

The Seventh Son Latest Poster

Master Gregory is the last living warrior of a clan, called Spooks, known for fighting off evil spirits. His claim to fame is that he imprisoned Mother Malkin, a all powerful witch, a long time ago. The local church informs him that the a local girl is possessed and he sees to if after getting throughly drunk. At the local church they do their best to exorcise the child. He performs his own counter spells and out pops Mother Malkin. As she falls into his trap, she kills his apprentice, and escapes. She then goes out to rebuilt her fallen empire. Gregory then sets off to find the “Seventh Son” to help defeat her before she can rule the world.

This is one of the most standard movies I’ve seen in a while. It’s predictable, has a steady pace if not slow at times, and most of all it’s kinda boring. It falls along the same storyline of a guy having some need to find the mystical chosen one for some exceedingly difficult task. Just like the Matrix, the Hobbit, or even most of the Elder Scrolls videogame series. After that there’s a mild kinda training montage with a series of tests. Then theres really contrived love subplot between the chosen one and a villain. It’s explained, but all the interactions are something to be desired. Half the time it seemed like he was just a horny dude and the ladies actions were so obvious the blind could see what she’s doing. Then theres the other love story subplot between Master Gregory and Mother Malkin that is nearly non-existent. Plot holes this size aren’t forgivable and I lost interest about the two characters whenever they interacted. From a viewer perspective its discouraging because the back story between the two love birds needs to be told in order to place empathy and some kind of concern for their welfare.

That’s the main problem that this movie has: it struggles to develop anything. The characters are almost copy pasted out of other movies. Like: Gregory is the stereotypical war vet who’s a cynic and drinks too much. Thats only every other hero ever told in just about ever movie/book/video game genera out there. Malkin is the bad guy in the film with little to no explanation as to why she wants to rule over the world other then “just because.” At least over the top James Bond villains had an excuse. Some hated society, some wanted to change society, and with Malkin it’s implied she wants to destroy it or get revenge, but its not throughly talked about. Its appalling that the main two characters are as deep as a puddle. Everything is really spelled out in simple sentences and nothing is drawn out to any length to give a impression that there’s any growth amongst anything.

Jeff Bridges add some character to Master Gregory, but comes off as being completely odd. He talks with some kind of accent, but since no one else does, nor anywhere they visit, seems to have this kind of accent it sticks out like a soar thumb. Some people are sure to like his strange characters quips, but its usually hit or miss with this movie depending on the scenes circumstances. Ben Barns was probably the worst in the film. His acting and delivery on most spots were stale. Also the chemistry between him and Alicia Vikander was exceedingly forced. Alicia Vikander was OK for the most part, but failed to get emotional intense when needed. Julianna Moore is as good as ever, but her character was so average that I don’t think her acting could help that.

The Seventh Son boils down to having a stale plot and some very average fighting scenes. They spent more time changing into dragons or fighting then doing anything else. Everyones acting is here and there and is jumbled between good acting and rather stale pieces. The visuals are alright, but with so many contrived and cliche things thrown on top of it it doesn’t do anything to improve the situation. For a fantasy movie this is a very average experience and I’d recommend almost anything that’s come out in the last 10 years over this.

I’d wait till this one came out on DVD.

4.5/10

Saints Row 4 The National Treasure Edition PS3 Videogame Review

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WARNING: Spoilers be spoiled

The Saints Row gang has taken over the United States of America and have somehow made their lead President. He starts to run the entire nation into the ground and calls a press conference to settle everyone down. Seconds after his public speech on how he’s going to clean it all up Aliens, called the Zin, show up kill, kidnap, destroy everything pretty much proving he can’t do shit. After a while everyone gains conscience and make some kind of stark realization that they aren’t on Earth anymore. As it turns out the smartest one there steals a ship and somehow notifies everyone they are in a ‘simulation,’ which is a nice way of saying VIDEO GAME. So they decide to do all they can to screw up the simulation and kill the Aliens that captured them.

Now usually when a series ‘jumps the shark‘ it is a giant cluster fuck of poorly written dialogue, story, jokes, character development, etc. However the group over at Volition makes jumping the shark a complete new art form full of various flavors of humor and wonderful tributes to movies, television, and even other games. Like most open world games you can run around doing dick all, or help someone do side quests, or main quests. Although after doing the seventh or so crack the code, blaze, or whatever else mini-game it’ll get repetitive, but if you want to max out your level (capped at 50) then doing all those, and some side quests, and should max you out before the end of the main quest.

I liked all of the stories told. They were entertaining and the humor flowed differently from character to character and none of it was too distasteful. However some were just throwbacks to the previous games. Since I hadn’t played any of them I had no clue what was going on. So they kinda didn’t hold any relevance and I wound up not caring sometimes. Sure that’s probably my fault, but I can’t get engrossed in a story about Matt Miller‘s wankery for his favorite TV show. Also some of them didn’t make sense. One confusing one in particular involved going to save Benjamin King from a simulation. Apparently lots of people are trapped in other simulations that make them think that all of the persons worst nightmares are coming true. So this involves a rival gang surviving and a hologram of his ex-girlfriend coming to kill him. Once the player gets him out, or to a point where he can leave, King requests that he stay in the simulation so he can kill his ex. My first thought was why does this matter?

As the story goes once someone is removed from their simulation they are kicked out of their holding pod. So simulation crashes and its assumed to be deleted from the Zin’s system. So in other words his ex-girlfriend isn’t real. She’s kinda like a AI unit in a videogame. It’s just a re-imaging of her. Once the simulation is deleted, she is deleted. Whats the point in drawing out something LONGER and get vengeance on something thats going to be deleted anyway? Besides, the ship has two really well rounded hackers on it, Kinzie Kensington and Matt Miller. Both could easily find the ex-girlfriend AI if she decided to go rogue and delete her that way.

Others are almost completely relatable on both being comical and/or nightmarish. For example: you liberate Pierce Washington from a corporate advertisements nightmare gone wild. Another makes Asha Odekar come to terms with her fear of failure. This one made me feel bad for someone who’s probably a strong headed killing machine, but truthfully its something everyone faces.

I hate to say it but most missions, beside the side quests, were incredibly easy. It mostly consists of go to x-location and kill x-bad guy. Sure the variety of story spruced things up a bit, but the game play was boring at times. I eventually found myself looking around for the collectibles considering they added some insight to the characters and gave you various powerups. Even the DLC(s) were easy which consisted of the same system of gameplay, but would only momentarily involve other aspects like doing a arbitrary task for someone in order to continue the mission. Like one involved finding all the people dressed up as animals and caging them. Fun, funny, weird, but still kinda boring.

One of the things I enjoyed the most, besides the humor, were the cameos. Sure, cameos are usually a bunch of people selling out for money, but many of the characters in this game had a purpose and are totally essential to the story telling experience. Like Keith David, one of my favorite bit actors of all time, is a main character and is apart of many parts of the main story. He even has a few good one liners later on. Rob Van Dam and Roddy Piper add a good bit of hilarious, and gruff, voice overs as well. Neil Patrick Harris is a villain and you can eventually have him join your crew. Even the Burch family, from Hey Ash Whatcha Playin’?, make a guest appearance. Due to the good amount of voice work done it adds a whole level different level of of humor to the game, makes it even funnier, and more memorable then most cameos in movies/games/tv shows/etc.

The graphics were really well detailed and accentuated the absurdity of it all. Like in some areas if a NPC stood next to a void, a open wormhole in the programming, then their eyes would bulge or arms would get scrawny. To a certain extent the game poked fun at itself by letting some NPCs walk along like they weren’t fully rendered. Other times cars would drive upside down or the buildings walls would look like they were constantly refreshing. Another cool thing is that in some missions the game would fake freeze the screen and a programming dialogue box would open up like someone was programming it as I played the game.

However the graphics were a major problem for the game. Often it would crash to a complete stop. So I had to reset the PS3 about 10 times total. To a certain extent I’m just glad it didn’t ruin my saved games files. However it was problematic if you used some of the more ferocious Homies to fight along side you. Like I’d recruit the Burch Family or Homies that were upgraded, a lot. They’d help in some of the intense fights. However, whenever we get into a skirmish they immediately use super powers on whatever enemy is around. So do the math, multiple cars, people, aliens, and your NPCs roaming about and fighting all at once== system overload. After I noticed that I stopped using them as much. This took away from the experience, to me, because the whole point of them being apart of the game is so they can help you out. Also there was a drastic difference in crashes between going solo and using NPCs. If I went solo I’d last about 9 hours of gameplay (shut up I know that’s bad), but if I used NPCs it would maybe last 4 hours before it crashed.

This is probably one of my favorite comedy games of all time. Yes, it’s a rare COMEDY GAME. Very few people in this world know what COMEDY is and how you can be funny or just fucking pathetic. Yes they straddle the lines on some of the shit jokes, but I found myself laughing so hard I had to pause the game and calm down more often then rolling my eyes. Sure the story lines kinda cluster together and some are just terrible, but for the most part the stories told are rather fun and stupid in a jovial fashion. The controls are perfect, and so are most of the graphics. The only thing that brings it down is that it sporadically crashes to the point where I had to restart my PS3 multiple times, but it wasn’t a problem for the most part. The difficulty wasn’t too challenging, but if you don’t pay attention to what you’re doing the game will pretty much run you over.

This is simply put: a great game.

8.5/10