Prince of Persia (Movie)

I waited a very, very long time to see this movie. I knew how I would feel about it pretty much right away. I love the Prince of Persia franchise. From the very first one that I used to play in elementary school on the school computers, right up until the Two Thrones. I am wildly, madly in love with these games. I remember being pretty excited when I heard that they were going to make a movie, trepedacious, but excited as well. I hoped beyond a hope that this would be the video game movie to break the bad streak of video game movies.

Then I saw the star.

Now, please, for the love of god, do not get me wrong here. I also very much adore Jake Gyllenhaal. I have seen pretty much everything that he has done in his career, and I have found very little to complain about. I think he’s an amazing actor, and has a great range. So it’s nothing at all personal to Jake.

It’s just that… well.

He’s not the Prince.

My excitement didn’t just waver, it sort of completely and utterly deflated and left me with absolutely no wanting to see this movie. That’s a pretty big drop, really. I see now that I should have expected it, given Jake’s appeal and stardom, who was producing the movie, and the fact that there are only a handful of video game movies out there worth their salt (and no, I cannot name them off the top of my head currently, so don’t ask. [but I can say none of them are by Uwe Boll.])

I waited for it to come up on Netflix Streaming until I would watch it. And I wasn’t even really waiting for it. I was just browsing one day, bored, and realized that it was there. I thought “hey, I have a few hours to kill and no desire to think about anything or put much effort into life, why not”.

While I will say that it wasn’t as bad as I thought it was going to be, it was bad. It disappointed me that they had to fuck with the story, they had to give everyone names. There wasn’t enough of the Prince jumping around like a supermonkey. It all sort of fell flat. Especially the ending. Flat. Predictable. Boring. About what I had come to anticipate.

I am glad that I watched it. It’s behind me now. I’ve seen it. I have an informed opinion. I wish Netflix had an added star for “meh”. Between “didn’t like it” and “liked it”. I didn’t turn it off. I didn’t loathe it to the core of it’s being. It was disappointing. I won’t ever watch it again, but I sat through it once. There’s no way to reflect that feeling on the Netflix rating system, and there really should be. I have felt that way about more than one movie.

I know it was exciting for Jake to have a role like this, who wouldn’t say yes to being the Prince? But maybe, just maybe, he should have taken a moment and really just thought it out. Asked himself if he was really right for the part, or if he was a fanboy getting his ultimate dream.

My vote? The latter.

Kameo

Let me tell you a little bit about my history with Kameo. It needs to be said, or I don’t think it’ll make much sense, my feelings about this game. My inability to truly feel much about what’s going on.

Once upon a time, I decided to try GameFly. I thought that it might be a good idea, renting games, getting to see what I might like and what I might hate without paying for a whole game. In theory, it’s brilliant. I suspect that for most people out there, it’s a wonderful tool. For me? Utter failure. Complete waste of time. Even though I didn’t pay anything at all for my two week trial with them, I feel like I wasted a lot of effort.

I tried games that I thought I might like, and when I did like them, I went out and bought them anyway. With my track record of games I like when I buy them VS games I hate, there’s not a lot of risk there. I could see where it would be risky for people who just pick up every game they see and give it a try. GameFly would be great for them. So you can see, effort wasted. Time wasted.

One of the games that I tried with GameFly was Kameo. I did like it pretty goddamned quickly, and it also happened to be at the very end of my trial. So I sent it back, went to the store with the intent to buy it and promptly saw something shinier. I can’t tell you now what it was, just that I had to have it more than I had to have Kameo.

Months later, I was back in the store, and lo – Kameo. Cheaply. So I picked it up. Why not? I’d had fun the first time, though I hadn’t gotten very far at all. I took it home and put it directly into my machine, happy as a clam.

And I shit you not, the next day something came out that would once again eclipse my playing of Kameo. And once again, I cannot tell you what that thing was, just that it was bigger and bolder, and called to me so deeply that I ignored the small cries of this newly bought game as I pried the disk out of the tray and shoved it back into it’s case, then onto the shelf. I should note here that I got exactly as far through the game as I had the first time.

A year later. Kameo again. Again it is usurped.

Forgotten in the stacks of games to play, I finally came upon it this year in my quest to finish every half touched game that I owned. I decided that now was the time to let this game shine. Now was the moment. I placed it where it needed to go and sat my ass down on the couch, ready. I restarted my game, because by this time, I had no memory of what I’d learned – however little – and what had happened in the story.

After about a half hour, I realized that I hadn’t gotten very far at all and caught up to where I recalled leaving off very quickly. Kind of sad, really, given all the efforts I’d gone to previously (*cough*). It also occurred to me that not once in my former tries had I ever gotten further than this into the game. Always, something more had come forward and taken my attentions away. For a few hours, I played with fear and trepidation. What if something fantastic were to fall into my lap as I held the controller in my hand? What if it demanded to be played instantly and once again Kameo was thrown to the wayside?

And then I got over it, because I realized I am my own downfall, and if I didn’t go seeking new shiny games, they would not appear.

It didn’t take me long to get through this game. And I did have fun with it. But I just have this kind of apathy going on about it. I don’t care that I played it, really. I guess I’m glad I did, it’s done with, it’s not on my shelf anymore. It’s not waiting for me and mocking me every time I walk by. But I have no sense of satisfaction. I have no feeling of accomplishment. I didn’t put down my controller and think to myself “Holy shit, that was a good game” and I didn’t by any means desire to play it again. It wasn’t a bad game, it really wasn’t. Plus, I am an avid, nearly insanely so, replayer, thus my lack of desire to go through again was and is surprising and confusing.

I don’t know where this feeling – or lack thereof – comes from. Is it because I just let it sit for too long? Is it that I tried too many times to get into this game and it never happened, thus leaving me with an empty hole where my enjoyment should be? I don’t know. I just don’t.

I have passed this game on, a thing I don’t really do, as I like to keep them around so I can play them again at a later date. But I know that I will not ever pick up Kameo again. I won’t ever give it another go round. PLEASE. SOMEBODY EXPLAIN THIS. My world is upside down (I’ll get over it).

Let The Right One In/Let Me In

I’m sure we all recall how I feel about the book and the movie Let The Right One In, yes? That I adore it to pieces and make everybody watch it.

When it was announced that there was going to be an American version made, I was curious. The Wiki for it said the director intended to include some of the things in the book that the Swedish version didn’t. I was expecting that they meant the really vampirey parts. The things where you go “oh shit!” and got kind of excited about it. I mean, it’s not that I wanted a replacement for my movie, it’s just that I wanted to see what could be done with it.

THEN it turns out that instead of adding things, the American director has removed some things. Some VERY IMPORTANT THINGS. I am a little ticked off that names were changed. Yes. Okay. But that’s minor.

It seems that they’ve removed entirely the fact that Eli/Abby is not really a girl, and just made the character a girl. Hello, that’s sort of really important to the story, thanks. That irritates me. There are a couple of other things, too. I was just generally unhappy with the whole thing.

Then, of course, I read up some on it because I was curious again, and discovered that they’re not trying to remake the Swedish movie, but make another version of the movie. Okay. Fine. And then it turns out that the director holds the movie in high esteem, both the original and his own. And that the book is something he adores.

After that, I watched a couple of the trailers for it and now I’m back to being curious and wanting to see it. I want to see what this guy does. I want to see how it all comes out. He’s quoted as saying he thought that the book could make a really great scary story, and while Let The Right One In is psychologically scary, I think I’d like to see what this American director did. And if I’m honest, I did enjoy Cloverfield. I think maybe this guy can do it, do what he thinks he can do without fucking shit up too much. Despite what he did with Eli/Abby.

So I’ll give it, and him, a chance.

Differences

I recently got Mrs Frisby and the Rats of NIMH, because I haven’t ever read it. I’ve watched the movie quite a bit. It is, in fact, still one of my favorites. So I thought it was about time to read the book and discover the source of my joy.

The book is really good, don’t get me wrong. It hasn’t changed my opinion of the movie, either, don’t worry. I’m just a little confused on how things became so glaringly different between the two. They’re like two entirely different species of animal. I’d be comfortable in saying that one of them is a bird and the other a mammal of some sort.

I really wasn’t expecting to get an entirely different story. I really really wasn’t. I was excited to see how they got more into depth with certain things, and thought maybe one or two things might be replaced. But the whole freaking story? Damn.

I can’t even tell people to just treat it as two different entities, because it is two different entities and there’s no real way to compare them. I can’t really sit down and make a list of the similarities and differences because… well… it just doesn’t work.

Like I said before, though, I don’t hate either work. I very much enjoyed the book. I love the movie. I’m just a little startled.

Cujo

This is my first go around with this book. In my book reading reality, I feel like I should have read this many years ago, but that’s not what happened. Actually, I’ve never even seen the movie. But it’s hard to wander along today’s world without encountering the synopsis of something Stephen King wrote. Popular media, culture, trivia, there’s always something that will carry the breeze of knowledge to you.

Thus, I already knew Cujo was about a dog that killed people.

Of course, it being Stephen King, I was under the impression that it had something to do with a supernatural cause. NO idea at all that it was just rabies. Just rabies, as if it’s such a normal every day thing.

I guess I was a little disappointed to find that out. And a portion of me was looking forward to a massively intense bloodbath caused by the dog.

But in the end, it’s a pretty good book. Four people dying isn’t anything to shake a stick at, either.

I wonder what it would have turned out like if King had written this novel in his later years instead of his earliest ones. Would the dog have been possessed? Would the slaughter have been more rampant than it is? It’s an impossible thing to have a conclusive answer for, but it’s still sort of fun to think about.

The greatest difference that I see in this book compared to others, is King trying to end the dog’s story on a positive note. Saying that it ultimately wasn’t the dogs fault that he wrought destruction and death. I don’t think he bothers with such things in his newer books, because it takes away from the horror of it all. It interrupts the reader. The happy ending for us was that the dog was killed. We didn’t really need to be told that had he survived and somehow miraculously gotten better, Cujo would have felt guilt for what he’d done. The fact that he’s a good dog is established very early on.

But I can see what he was trying to do there.

Again, it’s not a bad book. I enjoyed it quite a bit.

World’s Greatest Dad

I hadn’t heard of this one when it popped up on Netflix. But it has Robin Williams in it, and I’m a pretty huge fan of him. So I figured I’d give it a try. The premise seemed pretty interesting. At the very least, I figured, I would be able to say that I saw it.

Gotta tell you, it’s one of the more fucked up movies I’ve seen in a while. Robin Williams plays a guy who is a failed writer, a father and a teacher named Lance. His son’s name is Kyle. Kyle isn’t the best person in the world. In fact, he’s a giant douche.

Kyle doesn’t like music, cause it’s for fags. He doesn’t like movies, because it’s for art fags. He really only likes porn. The more raunchy porn, at that. It’s all he really talks about. He’s a dick to his only friend, Andrew. The only reason I can think that Andrew even keeps hanging around is that he’s got no dad, his mom is a drunk, and most importantly, because he’s got no other friends.

Well, Kyle dies. In a very embarrassing way. His dad makes it look like a suicide, and writes a note for his son. He does this because he doesn’t want his son to be seen in that way. I can understand. It’s horrifying. No matter how much of a cock your kid is, you don’t want him to be found holding his cock when the cops come.

This is sort of where things go nutty. The note gets out, and the entire school reacts positively to it. Suddenly Kyle has hundreds of people who love him. People who detested him when he was alive. Lance uses this to his own ends. Writing a book in his son’s name and using it to break himself into the profession he’s been trying to get into his entire life.

The ending was more than a little easy to see. I sort of wish that because of that they would have gone somewhere entirely different with it. But I think that it’s ultimately the right ending.

I liked it. I think it had to grow on me, but when it was over, I found that I liked it.

Oh, and surprise! Bobcat Goldthwait wrote it.
No shit.

Deadgirl – Request(ish)

With friends like J.T., who needs prison cellmates?

It’s one thing to be a juvenile delinquent and know your friend is slightly more of a waste than you are, and another entirely to realize your best friend is willing and able to abuse a helpless girl both physically and sexually.

And entirely different thing altogether when that girl is possibly not as alive as she appears to be.

Other than some fairly bad editing and the use of some incredibly Donnie-Darko-esque music, I actually enjoyed watching this movie. Yeah, you are detecting a bit of surprise there. I really didn’t expect to enjoy it at all. A friend said she was pretty disturbed by it, and I like disturbed, so I went for it. Low expectations for everything, guessing that it wouldn’t strike my fancy too much. So yes, I’m a bit taken aback that I actually liked it. The acting was pulled off pretty well, considering that the main players in the flick aren’t real heavy hitters. The slightly slow story isn’t really noticeable because you really want to know what’s going to happen next (she says while mentioning it).

It’s like the most fucked up fairy tale in the entire history of fairy tales. I’m even including all the original ones here. The Grimm’s. The folklore. All of it.

As much as you think you can anticipate the ending, you really can’t. It comes a little bit out of left feild. Then it goes ahead and runs around behind you for a while before popping up again and shouting “BOO!”

The whole movie is pretty weird, but the ending is sort of extra weird. You’re a little disgusted and a little bit horrified, but it’s also sort of sweet. In a really disturbing kind of way.

The prince and hero eventually gets his princess… sort of.

“You’ll enjoy being dead. Deadgirl does.”