cashew: close up picture of Minako's transformation pen (SailorMoon // pen is mightier)
Finally watched Wonder Woman. Let's get the final verdict out of the way first, then I'll give my very spoilery review.

Final Verdict: Worth watching in the theaters. A good movie that is unfortunately held back from being great by the Zack Snyder grime clinging still to the entire production. (Zack Snyder is credited as one of the screen writers and also p.g.a.)

Wonder Woman - A Meta Review: This is why Zack Snyder needs to be removed from the entire DCEU project ASAP. Just get rid of him. )

So, when it comes down to it, the movie could have been so, so much better. But Zack Snyder, as always, ruins everything. Wonder Woman is still a good movie, but it could have been great, and that leaves me furious.
cashew: close up picture of Minako's transformation pen (SailorMoon // pen is mightier)
General feeling towards Kung Fu Panda 3 is pretty meh. The first movie was interesting and new, the second one upped the ante with more exotic animals and very nice artistic references to the traditional paper cuttings culture. But KFP3 was...just meh.

To give credit where credit is due, there was a pretty awesome narrative sequence where they overlaid traditional Chinese painting over the flashback and had Chinese poetry (词) corresponding to each line of the narration. Surprisingly good translation and sounds way more awesome in Chinese than in English.

But, over all, the entire movie just felt...bleh. The jokes kind of fell flat and the humor felt stretched. And while the attempt at the new twist on adoptive parents and fitting in themes are appreciated, in the end, they really didn't amount to much. The villain's motivation seems to be evil for evil sake, unlike the first two movies where there were circumstances and character flaws that drove the villains. So, over all, everything feels bland and meh. The only good thing is that it seems like this will be the last of the KFP movies, as there's no post credit teaser and there certainly weren't any loose ends left to tie up.

There isn't a lot more to say about this movie, so I'll leave it at that.
cashew: Nokoru looking drained with a steaming cup of tea and his fingers up in a victory sign (CCD // exhausted)
OMG, so good, go watch.

Okay, actually a little more detail:
The graphics are awesome and the sound is very uniquely designed for a theatre experience. The surround sound is heavily utilized to give an immersive experience. The basic story is still the same as the 1967 animated movie, but the characterizations are much more faithful to the original book. The theme is something completely different from either the book or the animated movie, but that's actually a good thing, since the original book is kind of racist (even as it's trying not to be) and the animated movie had a very...uh, problematic theme.

The greatest triumph of the movie is that it made the animals feel realistic. They not only look very much like animals, but they also think like animals, which is very refreshing, since too many times animals act like humans instead of animals in these kinds of movies. There is definitely more respect to animal behavior here. While some might think the watering hole scene was not realistic, it's actually a very realistic depiction of what goes on at a watering hole. People forget that when predators are thirsty, they don't bother with hunting prey, they just go drink water, and prey can detect that and choose not to waste energy on running away from a thirsty predator.

Anyway, my point is, this movie is way, way more accurate in terms of animal behavior portrayal than I would have expected. Sure, there are some pitfalls (like the entire Louie scene), but for the most part, it's actually done quite well and in a way that I find believable.

Fully endorse, will go watch again. :D

(In other news: I'm working on making an RPG with RPGMaker. So far I have about 15 minutes of playable content. If you're interested in play testing for me, leave a comment and I'll send you a copy of the first chapter. XD)
cashew: Suzuran @ deviantart artwork - Mewvel vs. Catcom: Captain Amewrica, Iron Kitty, and Thor Purrinson (UMvC3 // Avengers)
So in the world of gaming, there's the reasonable games that try to earn your business with good game play, intricate story telling, and generally pretty, optional shinies to entice you into spending some money to support the developers; then there's the money grabbing, paywall stacking, patience trying games that uses every psychological trick in the book to coerce payment from you.

Avengers Academy, sadly, falls into the second category.

What is Avengers Academy? )

Wait, what's this money grubbing thing you're talking about? )

Okay, but is there anything worth actually doing then? )
cashew: Baby!Cap chasing after Bucky Bear (A-babies vs. X-babies // Starbuck)
Yes. I went to see it. Yes, there were a lot of people. Yes, I am that impatient. Yes, the movie was good.

My feelings for Civil War was a bit more complicated. I think that I can confidently say the movie was a good one, but how does it hold up to the rest of the MCU? Well, that's a little harder to say. I think I personally still liked Captain America: The First Avenger the most, if only because it was a rare movie that did things right and didn't make me cringe at anything, meta or otherwise. Yeah, it had its dorky moments, but they were done with love and the oldie feel of the movie just really, really appealed to me. While I really enjoyed Civil War, I definitely still have some issues with the movie. So, it's really more of a mixed bag for me.

The short version: good, solid movie, with some issues that bugged me a bit.

The long version: Well, SPOILERS under cut )

To conclude, this was an enjoyable ride. Flawed? Yes. But no less emotionally moving for it.
cashew: close up picture of Minako's transformation pen (SailorMoon // pen is mightier)
It's been a while since I've written a review for movies, so what the hell. Yeah, I know, everyone and their mother has probably already watched this movie, but I still would like to put in my two cents. Given that the movie is practically getting ready to go out of theatres, I'll say it here: Spoilers ahoy, and also why haven't you watched it already?

Zootopia - A Disney film unlike any Disney film you've ever seen. )
cashew: Suzuran @ deviantart artwork - Mewvel vs. Catcom: Captain Amewrica, Iron Kitty, and Thor Purrinson (UMvC3 // Avengers)
I saw Age of Ultron! :D

...and was not particularly impressed. :|

So, I guess it's time to dust off an old review style and list the good, the bad, and the ugly. As usual with my reviews, beware the spoilers.

Welcome to The Good, The Bad, The Ugly )
So, in summary, did not like very much. There were some good parts, but over all my impression was kind of negative.
cashew: Suzuran @ deviantart artwork - Mewvel vs. Catcom: Captain Amewrica, Iron Kitty, and Thor Purrinson (UMvC3 // Avengers)
I guess it's finally here, the end of Agent Carter. It's unclear whether the show will get renewed for a second season. With the rather dismal ratings, it's very likely that the show won't get the second season it so epically deserves.

Some general impressions about the show as a whole before I go onto the finale itself. Previously, I've already mentioned the show had some pretty bad race fail. However, despite its flaws, the show still had a very positive portrayal of (white) women and people with disabilities. In addition, the production value and the acting chomps of Agent Carter is heads and shoulders above the other TV shows out there right now. Not to mention, the writing is, over all, fairly tight, although I feel that the first half was much better compared to the second half. There was some meandering and padding, but again, over all, did a much better job than most other shows.

The show, despite being a comic book show, is mostly sustained on interesting character interaction and character growth, with a fun political espionage story to drive the drama. If the general audience had been more willing to give the show a chance, I think the show would see a much higher rating. Unfortunately, given that it is Marvel, the network would inevitably be targeting the comic book crowd, who, in my experience, is generally too immature to understand good writing.

Anyway, spoilers here on out. How does the finale look?

The show was satisfying, without ending definitively, leaving a wide margin of growth while still concluding the season's story. )

All in all, an enjoyable show with writing that is heads and shoulders above the rest of the superhero fare, yes, including Agents of Shield. It has its short comings, but the over all product is still quite enjoyable.
cashew: Suzuran @ deviantart artwork - Mewvel vs. Catcom: Captain Amewrica, Iron Kitty, and Thor Purrinson (UMvC3 // Avengers)
As I promised last week, my "review" of episodes 6 & 7 in one big post.

Let's get to the general thoughts: I felt that most of episode 6 was a set up for the real showdown in episode 7. Unfortunately, due to this, over half the episode was really just unnecessary padding. As with padding, the story went in a direction that made the characters' motivation and actions seem silly and the later conflict unnecessary, due to how fast the conflict was resolved and how unnecessary the conflict was in the first place for the plot to move forward. Overall, my impression was positive, but it feels like the writers are starting to run out of steam and have started falling into some classic comic book tropes, especially the PIS. The PIS is everywhere. (And so, so many flashbacks to CBR.)

Oh, and a quick address to something that's been showing up lately over tumblr regarding the extremely questionable representation of PoC in the show. While Agent Carter did a lot right, I feel that the show suffered a pretty severe case of race fail.

Ooops, this got long, so cut cut cut )

Moving onto the actual episodes in question... )

P.S. Yes, I realize this review is atrociously late. Eh, I was distracted by many other things.
cashew: Suzuran @ deviantart artwork - Mewvel vs. Catcom: Captain Amewrica, Iron Kitty, and Thor Purrinson (UMvC3 // Avengers)
Okay, now that I've watched up to Episode 5, things are getting a little stressful, mostly because there are some hints that the show is going in a direction that I don't like.

I doubt there is anything spoilery about what I'm going to say, since the show's been out for a couple of days now, but just in case, fangirly ramblings under the cut tag. You've been warned.

Episode 5 - Iron Cur-I-mean-Ceiling )

Can't wait for Episode 6!

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