Monday, July 29, 2013

Kickstarter Weekends: Geek Bar Chicago, FF VII (Web Series), Chroma Squad

This is totally not the weekend. This blog was supposed to be done by Saturday or Sunday night at the latest but unfortunately I overestimated my free time on Saturday and on Sunday I had two emergencies come up so no writing occurred. So let’s pretend it’s the weekend and try to get through this.

It’s time we revisit the wonder world of crowd funding. I decided to do a new KSW post since I hadn’t done one in a while but the truth I haven’t come across a giant amount of projects that caught my attention this time around. To be more accurate a lot of projects I would have loved to talk about ended during my…let’s say “break”, or are just about to end. So today we only have two projects to check out. It turn out we have three projects today after all.

 Anyway before all that let’s look at the projects from last time.

My Gimpy Life Season 2: Funding Successful!

Final Earnings: $59,289 ($50,000 Goal)

The lovely and talented Teal Sherer’s very funny web series will return for a second season. I was a little worried about this one but it made its goal and all is fine. If you haven’t seen My Gimpy Life yet click here to check it out. It’s one of my favorite internet shows.

MMPR: Funding Successful!

Final Earnings: $ 41,907 ($18,500 Goal)

Because the children of the 90s are now adults the Power Rangers fan film is underway. No surprise here, of course, as it made its goal before the last post went live. Now they say it will take roughly twenty grand to produce one episode and since MMPR doubled its budget I assume that means they’ll be able to make two episodes from this KS project, which is a good start. If those episodes go over well I suspect we’ll be seeing a second MMPR Kickstarter sometime in the relatively near future.

Time Crash: Funding Successful!

Final Earnings: $6,680 ($5,000 Goal)

Time Crash asked for $5,000, got it, and got a bit of gravy as well. Possibly even better for them they’ve gotten a lot of buzz since they first started their project. All and all I’d say that this is a project that benefited the user not just with the money they asked for but also a generous amount of publicity, or the “Total Package” if I can coin a phrase. And hey, they are (or perhaps one person from the band is) now at least aware that my band exists, so on top of everything else I feel pretty good too.

The Return: Funding Semi-Successful

Final Earnings: $3,600 ($10,000 Goal)

The APT Theater’s attempt to raise ten grand didn’t work out but thanks to Indiegogo’s flexible funding they apparently were still be successful despite being almost $7,000 under (how much of that money they actually got to keep I do not know). Though they didn’t make their goal the play apparently got a successful run, having a bunch of sell out shows. You can’t argue with that.

New projects after the jump.

Thursday, July 25, 2013

Review: The Lone Ranger (2013)

A few years back I reviewed The Shadow and The Green Hornet (the movies) and if you’re a long time reader of this blog you should recall that I was a big fan of the radio serials those flicks were based on when I was growing up but wasn’t too happy with the movies themselves. It should be of little surprise that The Lone Ranger was another show I listened to a lot. So when I first heard Disney was making a film adaptation you can bet that I was…meh, moderately interested. Look, I would have been super gung-ho about this a few years ago if it weren’t for the huge disappointment I had from Seth Rogen’s attempt at parody in his Green Hornet flick; now I’m just bitter and don’t give a shit.

The Lone Ranger first appeared on the radio in January of 1933 and the series has been adapted into various TV shows, films, comic books and books (some more successful than others). The problem with this film (aside from the ones we’ll be talking about in the review proper) is that Disney has been looking to make a new franchise in the vein as Pirates of the Caribbean this flick is this year’s attempt. Seeing as all their other tries at re-creating the success of that franchise has been met with failure I don’t have high hopes for this one. The Box Office gross for this flick was well below expectations and the critics were all over it, so I would imagine we have another lemon on our hand. Don’t hold your breath for Lone Ranger 2.

Full review after the jump.

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Review: Man of Steel

[NOTE: I actually wrote 98% of this blog nearly two weeks ago but I've been dealing with so many personal issues this Summer that I couldn't bring myself to upload it. I apologize to anyone who's been disappointed by the lack of updates the last two months. Hopefully I'll be able to get a few blogs up before the end of the month]

Most people, from random people I know on Facebook to big named celebrities, seem to have this weird dislike of Superman usually citing him as being dull or hokey and usually following it up by saying how much they love Batman. I will agree that a Superman movie hasn’t really been something to get excited about in modern times due to the fact that, well, there haven’t been that many good Superman movies. Most people agree that the 1978 Superman film and Superman II are the best of the bunch (though I think the first one is kind of dull and the second one is overrated). Superman III and Superman IV are considered two of the worst superhero movies of all time. Years later we got Superman Returns, which seemed to be Warner Bros. trying to capitalize on the momentum of Batman Begins, ended up not doing all that great and being extremely decisive among the fans (director Bryan Singer decided to have Superman returns be a direct sequel to Superman II, complete with re-used footage). They opted not to make a follow-up.

But now Man of Steel is upon us and there was a lot of good buzz about the film prior to release. It’s a reboot that has nothing to do with the previous films’ continuity (and also doesn’t have the classic Superman march). But wouldn’t you know it; the film has been the most hotly debated film of the year so far. Some people LOVED this film calling it one of the best superhero flicks made but then others have declared it to be an assassination of the character of Superman. I’ve been led to believe people who love Superman hate the movie but people who hate Superman enjoyed it. That’s a bad sign. Also they hired Zack Snyder to direct, presumably because they watched 300 and Watchmen but didn’t watch Sucker Punch and thus still had faith in his directing skills.

Before we get to the review there’s an outstanding issue and that’s the Justice League movie. Ever since The Avengers came out last year amnd ade all of the money on Earth Warner Bros. and DC Entertainment have been touting that they plan on releasing a JLA film in 2015 just in time to go toe-to-toe with Avengers 2 Avengers: Age of Ultron. [EDIT: This has since changed. Skip to the bottom of this review for more details] However a few months later they backtracked on this and said that Man of Steel needed to do well in order for them to move forward on that. That’s…suspicious. In any case this means that Man of Steel isn’t just its own movie but rather the DC equivalent of the original Iron Man movie; the beginning of a cinematic universe. That’s a lot a pressure.

Full review after the jump.

[WARNING: This review contains major spoilers for the film so if you haven't watched it yet and manged to avoid the internet the last month you may not want to skip this one]
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