Archive for May, 2009

There Will Be Remakes and Rumors of Remakes.

Yeah, so…current movie news is not something I would normally cover on NJ, but when it’s related to older films, it falls into my territory.

Apparently, two older films that I like are going to be remade/rebooted before too long. No film can escape the Hollywood remake machine, it seems!

First up, Flight of the Navigator. Get the full scoop here.

Come on, what 80s/90s kid didn’t love that movie? My dad recorded it from the Disney Channel for me and I watched it about a million times. Hell, my dad even liked it.

Apparently it was something of a box office flop, but like many 1980s films, it got a new lease on life thanks to VHS. It’s not the greatest film ever, but it’s charming and even had some pretty cool special effects for 1986. Plus, that cute little creature guy that the main character got to keep at the end of the movie. Ooh, and don’t forget Pee-Wee Herman himself as the voice of the spaceship’s AI!

Anyway, they’re gearing up to make a new version, and I don’t know how to feel about that. I am not automatically against remakes or reboots– in fact, I enjoy them when they’re done right (i.e. the recent Star Trek, which was great), and I guess this remake could turn out okay, but I just don’t really see them capturing the spirit of the original. I mean, it’s a thoroughly 80s film: spaceships, time travel, young main character, cute alien creature, Paul Reubens. I know that makes it dated, but that’s also why I enjoy it so much. So, seeing it brought into the 21st century might be a little too much for me. Plus, it’s Disney, and we all know how their live action films are. (Except Flight of the Navigator, of course. :D)

The reboot/remake/whatever of the first Alien film is the one I’m more worried about. Read all about it here. (The same article also tells of a Predator remake.)

As far as I’m concerned, movies like this are not to be touched. It is a damn fine film and I’m convinced that no director currently working today could do it justice. You just KNOW that instead of making it suspenseful, they’ll turn it into a big fat gore fest, which was not the point. If they want to do that, why don’t they just make an entirely new film with new characters? Then they can have their gore fest and leave the classic first movie ALONE.

Also, I don’t know about anybody else but I CANNOT see any other actress in the role of Ellen Ripley.

So it’s safe to say that I am pretty adamantly opposed to an Alien remake. Seriously, what a stupid idea. Get some original ideas, Hollywood.

Edit: Upon a more careful read of the article, I see there’s also a rumor that this Alien thing is an origin story and not a remake. But that doesn’t make any damned sense either. I don’t give a shit where the aliens came from! The point is that they’re badass motherfuckers! Geez.

Edit Edit: Well, thinking about it, I guess an origin story would be better than a remake. BUT STILL.

The Revenge of Edit: Somewhat good news! The new Alien project is confirmed to be…a prequel! Yay! No shitty remake! Get the story here.

Blurb: No Star Trek Glass For Me.

Yesterday, I went to Burger King fully intending to shell out two dollars for a Star Trek collectible glass, only to be told they were sold out. How the fuck did that happen? 😦

Blah Blah, Barbie, Blah Blah.

I know, I said I was going to write about that other anime movie, but…well, in order to subtitle something, you have to time the subtitles first, and guess whose job that is? I have very little tolerance for tedious tasks, so…it might be a while before I get it done. 😐

Anyway, do any of you girls still keep up with Barbie these days? Yeah, me neither (bitch never returns my phone calls or texts). In fact, walking down the Barbie aisle tends to send me into a conniption fit and I go off on a rant about how awful her face and clothes are and how they’re trying to make her like those awful Bratz things and I don’t shut up for like 20 minutes.

I try to deny it, but– sigh –I loved Barbie when I was a kid. At first I thought she was lame and at the ripe old age of six, I told myself I didn’t need no steenking plastic girly Barbies. However, peer pressure is a powerful thing when you’re six. Before long, I asked for one of those My First Barbies and found myself liking her. Then came the 1990 Happy Meal Barbies, which I loved to death:


Later came the Soda Shoppe:


…and the rollerblading Barbie whose skates made sparks, a Southwestern-themed Jeep done tacky early 90s style for her and Skipper to drive while wearing their tacky early 90s “Western” clothes, Happy Meal Stacie, and all kinds of bullshit like that. (Where the hell did my parents get the money for this stuff?)

Then I grew up and forgot how much I used to love Barbie. That is, until I went to Walmart the other day and saw the new My Favorite Barbie line, part of Barbie’s 50th birthday celebration. This is a series of reproduced vintage dolls and I daresay they are really cool. You can look at the whole line here. These babies almost make me forget that Barbie really pisses me off!

They come with the doll, a repro outfit from the same time period, and repro booklet (which, honestly, is one of my favorite parts about the whole thing). They sell for around 40 dollars, which is entirely too much for me. My favorites are the 1977 Superstar Barbie and the 1962 Brunette Bubble Cut Barbie.

1977 Barbie comes with two really nice dresses and has that nice, friendly 70s face.


1962 Barbie wears a red swimsuit in the box, but the pink dress she comes with is fantastic. Very glamorous.


I bet you thought I was going to say that I wanted the 1986 Barbie and the Rockers one, huh? Well, I certainly wouldn’t mind having it, since it’s like a little 1980s time capsule, but based purely on the aesthetic value, the 1977 and 1962 dolls win. Let’s face it: 80s fashion was pretty damn bad, and rocker Barbie is a shining example of it, and hopefully she will remind people that real people almost never look good in pink spandex and shoulder pads.


Retro Anime Theatre: Swan Lake

First of all, I’m sorry that April passed by without any updates, but there have been a lot of stressful things going on, and I haven’t been inspired to write. Such is life. I do want to try to post more in the coming months, but I’m not making any promises yet!

So, as you may or may not know, I like anime. I watch new series all the time, and poke around on a few forums and whatnot, looking for obscure old shows.

Well, a few days ago, I made some big discoveries. Not just one, but TWO movies I’ve been wanting to see for years. They’re both made by Toei, which animated a lot of American shows in the 80s (including Muppet Babies, I think). They’re both adaptations of fairy tales. And, last but not least, they’re both old.

In the last couple of years, every time I went somewhere that had huge stacks of VHS tapes, I looked for both of these movies, to no avail. I found people selling them on Amazon, but they wanted too much money, plus I heard that the English dubs were less than spectacular. I’m not a fan of dubs in the first place, so that was a big turnoff too.

Then, finally, I said “screw it” and started Googling to see if someone, by some remote chance, had uploaded one of them somewhere. And the other day, I found both of them. With the original Japanese audio. On the same blog, no less!

The first is Sekai Meisaku Douwa: Hakuchou no Mizuumi, aka World Masterpiece Fairy Tale: Swan Lake, from 1981. This film and I go way back, and it’s been shrouded in mystery for years. I saw part of it once on cable sometime in the early 90s (I swear it was on AMC, but I could be wrong) and I thought it was fascinating. I wanted to see the whole thing SO badly, but they never aired it again. But that problem has, at last, been solved!

As an aside, all screencaps in this post were captured by yours truly. If I hadn’t gotten that wild hair up my bum, this post would have been up last night! But I digress.

Now, on to Swan Lake! Luckily, the person who uploaded it also saw fit to subtitle it in English, which is fantastic because my Japanese isn’t THAT good.

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