Go, Speed Racer, Gooooooooooooooooooooo

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Postby Moderator » Fri May 09, 2008 2:35 pm

I don't think Michael is saying that you need to blow money on a movie you don't think you'll like -- he's just saying you shouldn't trash it without having seen it.

(The starter to his column addresses the posts online about the Galactica prequel Caprica. The dang thing isn't even done casting yet and apparently the blogosphere and message boards are alight with negatives.)

I agree with the concept that commenting pro or con on something you've never seen is fundamentally flawed -- kind of like those people who will protest a film or a book for being "anti-(fill in the blank)" without having read the script, seen the movie or read the book. They've been told it's bad and are happy to run with that preconception -- asserting the entire time that they know, they just know.
- I love to find adventure. All I need is a change of clothes, my Nikon, an open mind and a strong cup of coffee.

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Postby robochrist » Fri May 09, 2008 2:57 pm

"I don't think Michael is saying that you need to blow money on a movie you don't think you'll like -- he's just saying you shouldn't trash it without having seen it."

Yeah. But, on the other hand, I DIDN'T trash it. I'm using specific criteria to gauge whether or not it's going to be worth the gamble, or to judge what will most likely constitute a piece of shit.

In my own experience, this has worked for me nearly 100% of the time. I know because I used to implement this gauge then go ahead and see the movie anyway...almost invariably to my regret.

I would actually make a very good professional critic. I wouldn't bother seeing the flick; I'd just tell people it sucks based on all these brilliant deductions. Let's see Michael top THAT argument! :wink:

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Postby Alan Coil » Fri May 09, 2008 7:48 pm

ALL RIGHT, BUTTHEADS AND LADIES, I'VE SEEN THE MOVIE.

And I sez it's good. I liked it more than Iron Man. I will not see Iron Man in the theater again, but I could be tempted to see Speed Racer in the theater a second time.

If you are going to see this movie, the theater is the place. The special effects will not translate well onto the small screen.

The movie is based on the cartoon, so you essentially know what the movie will do. And it does it. It has enough action to keep the kiddies interested, and enough story to keep the adults interested.

I agree that the reviews are all over the place. I don't see enough negatives to give it a bad review. Yes, the game aspects are clearly visible, but not to the extent of the Van Helsing movie previously mentioned. Van Helsing was ALL gaming sequences. There are 2 problems that I see, but they were easy enough for an adult to follow. There are times where the story moves from the present to the past. And there were times when the background scene changed as a character moved across the screen. Both of these might confuse younger children, but most teens would catch on.

And the colors! Wheeee! Pretty colors!

Now, if you go see the movie in the theater, don't hate me if you don't like it. After all, I am not a professional critic. I am certain that, if it were possible for Siskel and Ebert to review this movie, they would give it 2 thumbs up. Maybe not way up, but certainly up.

I've been reading comics since before Iron Man existed. I first saw the Speed Racer cartoon when I was in my mid 20s. I am fond of both. And I do actually think Speed Racer is the better movie. And even more so for kids.

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Postby robochrist » Fri May 09, 2008 7:54 pm

If Alan Coil - the guy who claimed would send Jeff Bridges flowers for his denigrating of this excellent actor, and, so Jeff reports, NEVER did so! - gets a rise out of Speed I KNOW the movie is a thing to avoid!

I'm tellin' ya, there's a new litmus test every day.

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Postby Alan Coil » Sat May 10, 2008 9:00 am

That's funny, Rob.

At another site, a poster said that if you don't like this movie, you have just stabbed your inner child.

And Jeff has always turned me off. Hated Starman and didn't care for Big Lebowski at all. John Goodman has been a negative for me in recent years (loved his work on Roseanne), but he did fine in Speed Racer.

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Postby robochrist » Sat May 10, 2008 10:56 am

Hey, listen - don't get my inner child going. That's what's happening in the Pav right now.

Jeff - as I'm sure you know - did a helluva more than those 2. And even though I'm not a big fan of Starman either, Bridges has a tendency to rise above the material. There are actually quite a number of his movies I'm not nuts about, but he himself is ALWAYS good. Simply put, he is a really good actor.

And he wants yer luv, man.

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Postby robochrist » Sun May 11, 2008 1:46 am

...however...

I WILL be checking this one out on dvd. I really am intrigued by the visuals. Not quite the typical cgi overkill. The surreal world here might actually work, the way Warren Beatty's Dick Tracy did.

I'm just too afraid I'll be bored by all effects and no story. I went thru that too many times in the past.

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Postby robochrist » Mon Oct 13, 2008 12:03 am

Finally rented this thing on Saturday.

It ALMOST works!

Way too much of the redundant "Car Fu" computer game stuff, which goes on and on. I started walkin' around to do things till it was ready to move change gears. (It allowed me to get LOTS of laundry done!)

Several cliche long-winded sappy scenes too.

But I like the surrealism and some of the Racer X plotting.

I'm still glad I didn't pay a ticket for it; I was right about THAT. But it's literally a good cartoon - with even a touch of the camp comedy of the 60's Batman series, along with its nods to its Anime roots. Would have worked better with either some trimming (it's 2 hours and 15 minutes!), or a tighter story with less hackneyed long-winded dialog. But as a rental, now and then I got a kick out of it.

The kid who played Speed's little brother was great.

On his website, Ebert gave this movie 1 1/2 stars. I give it 2 1/2.

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Postby Alan Coil » Mon Oct 13, 2008 5:14 pm

Ebert didn't review Speed Racer.

That review was done by Jim Emerson, the editor of Ebert's site, and a reviewer in his own right, while Ebert was on medical leave.

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Postby robochrist » Mon Oct 13, 2008 7:13 pm

Yeah, I remember that.

But most of the time Emerson's responses to a movie were close to Ebert's.

If a review is on Roger's site, I generally attribute it to him - like those reviews in Leonard Maltin's compendium, which is assembled by several reviewers assisting Maltin.

If you see a flick with 1 1/2 stars, Ebert most likely give is damn close to the same.

Putting that aside, who gives a shit?

I give it 2 1/2!

It's MY judgment that prevails! Mine is the final word, the will, and the way!

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Postby Alan Coil » Tue Oct 14, 2008 4:30 pm

"Mine is the final word, the will, and the way!"

Ain't working, Rob.

Them eyes of your don't have me hipmotized.


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