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Forum Activity by Evan Solomon

Here's my hot take. Disney needs to bolster the service with more new programming. Putting their current library on Netflix on this service is not enough. For it to be worth it, you need the vast bulk of Disney's catalogue, all of ABC's, and new programming for adults as well. Otherwise this is DOA. They also need to bundle an INNOVATIVE ESPN streaming service with it to stop their bleeding.

The Marvel Netflix shows are confirmed to be staying on Netflix.
Aug 23, 2017 1:53 AM
BadLieutenant
Evan SolomonFisk should have been the villain.


That's the crazy thing in how this series seems to lag behind the comics. I'm not an active comic reader, but I know it was quite a while ago that the editorial staff understood the Hand was boring as fuck on its own after Frank Miller's initial run and that the Hand thereafter only became interesting as a means of displaying Fisk's tactical brilliance when he overtook the organization. It demonstrated something about Fisk's ability to take command of a criminal enterprise, which was only ever implied before. Why on earth wouldn't you repeat that proven narrative success when translating it to TV?


Here's my problem. Why can't The Hand JUST be criminals. Why do they need this holy motivation to destroy cities and why is their thirst for immortality their primary motivation for the plot to unfurl? Their ambitions make no sense as more powerful groups would step in and ruin them. Why make yourself known? They should have just wanted more money and power and their reliance on immortality should have been the solution to the problem, not the driving force. It should be their weakness that The Defenders discover and exploit/destroy. I just have issues with an organization to do evil that has been around thousands of years yet seems so inept and incompetent when compared to the other forces of the MCU, which the show tells us this story is apart of. What have they learned in their thousands of years of operating?
Aug 22, 2017 3:21 AM
BadLieutenantI haven't watched this yet, but a minor observation: Daredevil's second season fell apart any time it tried to rely on the Hand as a compelling threat because who could possibly give a fuck about that bland ninja bullshit. Now they built this whole show as a culmination of all of Marvel's Netflix programming and the big bad is....the fucking Hand? Seriously, I don't have the time to deal with any more throngs of nondescript ninja if that's all this series has to offer in menacing our main characters.


No ninjas. The Defenders fight The Hand in what are essentially vacuums. As in each of the five directly. There are some goons for fight flavor, but that's about it. Sigourney Weaver's king-fu stand in is stupid obvious. Madame Gao dies stupid telekinesis. Jessica Jones despite knowing no King-Fu is somehow able to fight them. Fisk should have been the villain.
Aug 22, 2017 2:18 AM
XenosGoing to have to agree with Hipster Thor for the most part. Especially the fight scenes. Man or man, whatever happened to the beautiful fight scenes from the first season of Daredevil? Did they cut the budget or something? In addition, the team up and chemistry of the cast doesn't work nearly as well as Marvel's other show Agents of Shield (going by the first three seasons anyways).

The only positive that I can think of is that the whole "Hand" saga works better tonally with The Defenders than it did with the second season of Daredevil.


Think about this, though. In DD season 2, The Hand sent an army of undead ninjas to attack a hospital in the middle of a city. What kind of comparable strength/influence was on display in this show?
Aug 22, 2017 1:09 AM
jasper de largeNot sure what you're asking. 3 million is relatively modest these days. It's all about market size. Destroy All Monsters likely had a modest budget because it was for the Japanese market primarily, no? They could never afford to make their special-f/x heavy movies rival Hollywood's without being prohibitively expensive.

Are you suggesting 3 million is very high for these DC/Marvel animated movies? The main reason is obviously inflation, but even taking that into consideration, it's not ridiculously expensive.

I suggested they probably can sell a million units, maybe a couple million. At $15-20 a piece, grosses could be 30-40 million. I think video-games may be a closer comparison for sales. But that's on the high end estimate of sales.

The average one of these direct-to-home-video probably sell half a million units or less. But still, that's still about 10 million gross.


I'm saying that 3 million is high for the quality described, and from what I saw in Killing Joke, which to me, had animation quality sub-Justice League levels. I was wondering if the bulk of the budget goes to voice talent.

And the Japanese films in the 60's were more lavish on production and effects than comparable films in the West. Destroy All Monsters! is not a cheap movie. Only four years prior Tsuburaya went on a tour of Walt Disney Studios and requested the same equipment for optical printing. Disney was the only studio in the world with such an advanced machine and he was able to convince Toho to buy the same machine. It was very expensive. The only comparable films being made at the time were Harryhausen's stuff. It wasn't until the 70's when the Japanese film market crashed that those movies got made cheap, and it shows. I only used DAM as an example because I had the numbers fresh in my head, but that might be unfair because in Japan payroll and contracts were likely handled very differently.
Aug 20, 2017 6:47 PM
jasper de large
Rated NCC-1701
jasper de largeBruce Timm, wtf man?

On the other hand I think it's kinda cute. Maybe this is the most realistic adaptation of the canon to date. I mean, come on. Everyone farts. People have sex. Maybe this is the most humanized and honest representation of superheroes we've yet received.

I don't keep up with these direct-to-home-video animated movies the way most comic-heads do. I've only seen 2 in the last 10 years or so out the dozens and dozens they've made. One was a Justice League movie, which was actually somewhat decent, but I don't remember much of it. I think it was one that served as inspiration for the Batman v Superman live action movie last year. The other was the animated adaptation of Killing Joke. Again, it was somewhat decent but the animation just bothered me. Decent art design I guess, but the frame-rate was very low. It definitely couldn't hold up to 24 fps of western classic animation, and I don't even think it was up to the 12 fps standard of much anime.

Makes me wonder about the budgets of these DCAU movies. I think Warner is following the cheap, 12 fps standards of anime, except anime tends to budget according to scene (some are just talking heads, and others are where the budget clearly went).

I saw one was budgeted around 3 million. IDK if that was Dark Knight Returns or Batman + Superman: Apocalypse... I'll have to check again.

But the best ones probably can sell 5 million units or more, I suppose? On a budget under 5 million, they've got to be generating decent revenue.


How much of that 3 million goes to talent? I was watching a commentary for Destroy All Monsters! last night and that film was made for 600,000 USD. In 1968, accounting for inflation, that is 4 million dollars by today's standards. That is a live action film with studio actors, location shooting, built sets, and elaborate special effects. What happened to movie budgeting?
Aug 20, 2017 3:28 PM
I have binge watched the entire program and I have to say that I did not like it that much.

I did not watch Iron Fist because if how badly it was received, and the first episode really highlights the weakness of Colleen Wing and Danny Rand. The introductions for Murdock, Jones, and Cage establish everything a first time viewer of any of these shows needs to know about these characters. You immediately understand who they are
and what they care about. The Iron Fist characters are ill defined and vague and serve as lofty exposition dumps. The dialogue between the two is some of the worst I have ever seen in such a highly produced show. While the Iron Fist is by the far the worst, the quality of writing across the board is not great. Too many "lines" and direct declarations of motivations, plotting, and exposition. No scenes like the Barbershop opening to Luke Cage where the characters feel like real people talking about real, relatable things. This show is written more like The New Scooby-Doo Movies than a continuation of these characters in terms of writing style.

The plot in and of itself is a direct continuation of DareDevil and Iron Fist(?) but it feels like said plots were retro-fitted to work together. Stick is a member of the protectors of Kun-Lun and the Hand who we've seen for multiple seasons suddenly need the Iron Fist more than anything else. Villains that used to seem like a big deal are now retro-fitted and weakened by being shoe-horned into a new villain's own hierarchy. Two new villains are introduced that end up being inconsequential and under developed. Weaver and the Japanese Hand member cannot replace Fisk, Punisher, Cottonmouth, Kilgrave, or Mariah/Shades in terms of threat, screen presence, acting ability, or charisma. Electra is still not enjoyable to watch and her motivations make absolutely no sense, especially near the end.

A major issue I have is the forced, borderline hack-neyed way they involve Jones and Cage into the story. Cage is just looking for answers in regards to some kids in Harlem being recruited for a clean-up crew (a devastating scene where a woman discovers her last child died in prison feels wildly out of place in tone, tbh, and would have benefitted from a stronger story surrounding it). Jessica seemingly had absolutely no motivation at all other than someone telling her not to investigate a case. Why she does anything in this series makes no sense and it's disturbing to me because in her own series her motivations are deeply personal and heart wrenching, here they diminish her to almost a cartoon character where her crippling alchoholism is played for laughs. At least Cage has an emotional connection to Harlem, JJ had nothing here. Getting these heroes together feels hackneyed and contrived. It should be noted that this show is shorter than the others it seems, at eight episodes, and it does feel too short.

A big problem I have with the story is that you rarely, if ever, get to see the Defenders defend everyday people. There is not much of a window into the lives of the people in this city, as there was in the individual programs, so you never get a direct connection between the "Defenders" and those whom they supposedly defend. They are just fighting the same several characters in repeat in a virtual vaccuum. All of the characters they care about are conveniently gathered into the same place for much of the series. How convenient.

Speaking of fighting, the action and scope of this show is terrible. Not only are the fight scenes shot ATROCIOUSLY but they are all shot in the way too dark, confined spaces,and way overly cut. The show opens in Cambodia (sounds exotic!) and we immediately cut to a fight scene in dark tunnels that could very well have been anywhere. Much is the same for the rest of the fight scenes, with the Chinese restaurant being the only stand out. This show just feels cheap. I think of that beautiful club in Luke Cage, the music, and lavish production value at play, and it is sorely lacking here. And boy will you get sick of the rinse and repeat transitions between the characters where they re-use stock footage with a different color filter so you know exactly where you are going. You can see sets redressed and reused. And SPOILERS the big dragon skeleton at the end was laughable, like an old Star Trek set END SPOILERS.

It should be noted that the MCU at large has ruined any sense of tension for me, or investment in the main plot. The interconnectivity is making the premise implode. There is no reason that he Defenders can't just fight criminals out to control territory and make money. The Hand and their motivations are ridiculous to me. Their entire concept is absurd. Okay, so they want to destroy NYC. They never say how they will do this but they claim they will just like they did to Pompeii (What?). Where will that get them? Now they have to deal with the Avengers, and as much as they talk about their great power they are nothing in comparison. They may as well be ants. How am I supposed to take this threat seriously? Make the stakes lower but more emotionally involving (and gray; I can sympathize and understand many of the villains in this show up until now, the villains in the Defenders are empty and have nothing to them) like you did with the other shows, you stupid writers. Also the idea of Kun-Lun is hilarious to me. The Black Hand is obsessed with the secret of immortality and seek to steal it from Kun-Lun, yet on the other side of the fucking mountains is Karmataj. A place where some prick American doctor stumbles into and is almost immediately made all powerful and given the keys to fundamentally alter the fabric of time, space, and intedimensional travel. The Black Hand has been around for a thousand years obsessing over the wrong goddamn monastery. After a week of training, Benedict Cumberbatch not only knows the secret to immortality, but can erase your entire organization from existence with minimal effort. The Black Hand are a joke.
Aug 20, 2017 1:44 AM
Feuer und EisI agree with the director. Kong was an adequate spectacle with a great finale involving the Chicago Cubs and Hot Dogs (mild spoilers). Cinema Sins lacks the personality/wit of MST3K, and they continually berate films with high quality production values or cinematic qualities that aren't ripe for criticism. Watching these reviews feels like you're that friend who paid for the tickets, and no one wants to stick around for whatever reason. It's a goddamn shame.


Not to fanboy wank, but Jordan is 100% correct about the artistry involved in MST3K. From the puppets, props, music, and production design to them putting themselves out there in occasionally embarrassingly bad skits. They make fun of the movies sure, but their own aesthetic is a tribute to them. They do not elevate themselves above the movies. There's a lot of passion and effort going on there that isn't present when compared to this minimum effort, snide, crap.
Aug 17, 2017 3:37 AM
I still don't like the animation in this movie, btw. I don't know if I brought that up here before. The image quality is fine, but the creatures, Kong in particular, move with too much purpose. There is no subtlety, randomness or unpredictability to his behavior as seen in the Peter Jackson film. All of his gestures and expressions feel far too choreographed.
Aug 16, 2017 10:04 AM
I agree with Roberts, but I worry his reaction will be interpreted as sour grapes. I do love this kind of discussion erupting around a B-movie like Skull Island however, because it establishes such a film as just as valid a form of artistic expression as any other film.
Aug 16, 2017 9:59 AM
Death Proof
Can a nigga get an index as to what's going on in here?



I expressed the problems I had with the film. Nameless responded to several, I responded to those and expressed my extremely low opinion of one of the directors, and then Nameless took that as an attack on his personal identity and went absolute batshit.
Aug 12, 2017 9:03 PM
Well you're already reading my posts still. I haven't touched and will not touch that other thread because I refuse to feed whatever histrionic identity crisis lunacy you're going through any further by restating why I don't think a specific film is all that great.
Aug 12, 2017 8:01 PM
I would encourage Nameless to reread this thread to himself in it's entirety in several hours and give it some proper reflection.
Aug 12, 2017 7:29 PM
If this were a thread about Evangelion, then sure I could see how I would burst in and "shit on" your fandom. But this isn't one. I have a lot of opinions about this movie and if you can't deal with them I'm sorry. Pointing out flaws is not an attack on you. You're acting manic now. Thank you for referring to me, a Jew, as a Nazi for no discernible reason while you seem to believe me the brat in this scenario.

Also, the film is directed by two people, not one. So "by Hideaki Anno and Shinji Higuchi." If you're going to praise something at least acknowledge one of the creators.
Aug 12, 2017 4:47 AM
Stop acting like a brat, Nameless. This is a Forum, not social media. Forums exist for discourse. If you care so much about this subject matter and not arguing where is your thread in memorial of Haruo Nakajima?

Calm the Hell down.
Aug 11, 2017 10:37 PM
Spencie ReturnsReturn of Godzilla can be painfully boring, though. Aside from the original, Shin is one of the only Godzilla movies that I can think of which feels genuinely frightening at times. I'm clearly more into Godzilla on a surface level than Evan, as one of my few gripes with Shin Godzilla is the multiple beams coming from his back. The tail blast should have sufficed. I definitely noticed jingoism at play, and the Japanese-American diplomat was a blatant weak spot, but I overall loved Shin Godzilla and would put it alongside Godzilla vs. Destoroyah and Ghidorah, the Three-Headed Monster as a personal favorite.

One of my favorite Godzilla tropes is the inevitable military scene in which they realize how useless they are against Godzilla. Shin Godzilla's scene in question is top notch. I'd love to rant more but I'm at work. I'm happy that it's getting people's attention and actually stirring up some Godzilla discussion.

Hey Evan, what did you think of the dub? I prefer subtitles in general, but the bureaucratic dialogue in Shin Godzilla hits you so fast that it's nice to enjoy the visuals without trying to keep up.


I have not watched the dub. I don't know what it is but for any modern movie I cannot stand dubbing. I think it's because Titra and AIP's dubbing houses really got how to do it and they don't exist anymore. Bit then again I am also fine with the dubbing in Shaw pictures. Idk, dubbing is a relic of another era to me.
Aug 11, 2017 8:37 PM
Sorcerer Supreme Nameless
Evan Solomon"All over the place". Hm. They talk about radiation sure, but you don't see the consequences of it. Godzilla's origin is boiled down to feeding off improbable nuclear waste, rather than being angered and burned by atomic weapons testing and it had nothing to do with the story of the movie, it isn't even nessecary information. That's the extent of nuclear subtext as far as Godzilla is concerned. You have the stuff where the UN wants to nuke him, but that is an entirely different issue. It's interesting to me how in this movie, the acting Prime Minister agrees under pressure to allow the countdown to happen, but in ROG, the PM refuses to allow Nuclear activity regardless of anything. Hmm.

You don't see the consequences of it? They "talk about it"? Come on dude, quit being lazy. Are you... good enough at watching movies to be posturing your fandom to this extent? I think you must suck at watching and understanding movies

It's one thing to have an actual critique, it's another thing to just rattle shit off the top of your head because it fits the current circumstance with little to no regard for the safety of the people around you. This is my thread, Evan. You best start showing some respect or you can go make your own


Don't be childish. Let's compare two scenes. One in Godzilla 1954, and one in this movie. The scene after Godzilla's second raid on Tokyo and the scene after Godzilla turns into and Eva angel and destroys downtown in Shin. In Shin you see some people in some kind of arena holding stuffed animals for a few shots and the main characters bemoaning the death of the cabinet. In the original film you see people with horrible radiation burns, you see children losing their parents, there is a wonderful scene of a children's choir lamenting the loss of so many people. The aftermath in Shin is arguably the worst act of the film, where the exposition goes overboard and the pacing goes downhill. But most importantly the consequences of Godzilla's attack are politicized and the true consequences are washed out. In comparison the movie is a confection.

You talk about respect then rattle off claims that my criticisms are lazy and how I suck at watching movies. Sorry if a different opinion is alarming to your psyche.
Aug 11, 2017 8:31 PM
Sorcerer Supreme Nameless
Evan SolomonThis is not a "Punk" interpretation of Godzilla. Godzilla vs. Hedorah is closer to that. The abhorrent Godzilla: Final Wars os closer to that. I don't know where you feel the "pinkness" coming from. The government misfits banding together to come up with a plan? There's hardly anything "punk" there outside of them not fitting in.

There are definitely angsty conservatives undertones to this movie, even overtones. I do not understand how you missed it. You have bitterness over Japan's heeling to the US. You have young men angry at a government for not responding to an impossible situation due to democratic safeguards. You have those same young men defeating Godzilla at the end on their own. It's pretty cut and dry. The movie is anti-politics, whereas the original series of movies held the upmost optimism over the UN. Politics of this nature have no place in a Godzilla movie as far as I can see as it distracts from the themes of Godzilla himself. Godzilla changes from a metaphor for WMDs and a personification of nature itself into a metaphor over how the Japanese government as it is is too incompetent to get anything done. I have a problem with that.

That sounds punk as fuck

Also no at that last bit, jeeze louise that nuclear nature subtext was all over the place, on the surface ever which apparently this entire movie is. This was straight up Here Comes the Flood stuff


"All over the place". Hm. They talk about radiation sure, but you don't see the consequences of it. Godzilla's origin is boiled down to feeding off improbable nuclear waste, rather than being angered and burned by atomic weapons testing and it had nothing to do with the story of the movie, it isn't even nessecary information. That's the extent of nuclear subtext as far as Godzilla is concerned. You have the stuff where the UN wants to nuke him, but that is an entirely different issue. It's interesting to me how in this movie, the acting Prime Minister agrees under pressure to allow the countdown to happen, but in ROG, the PM refuses to allow Nuclear activity regardless of anything. Hmm.

Just flatly saying there is no other Godzilla film done as well as this one is a laughable sentiment to me. I also find it difficult to believe you are informed enough to make such a conjecture. You're looking at a catalogue of thirty movies. I would raise an eyebrow at anyone who said any Godzilla movie was not in the same league as the others because so many do different things better than others. How reductive.

And good for Anno delaying Rebirth (he did need to be coerced, btw). I feel like a man desperately trying to relive success by re-making his most famous work(which he will never be happy with) should pursue different projects. I have a very low opinion of Hideaki Anno, of course. Were I involved in modern politics I would call him a one trick pony. And that one trick isn't even that good in the first place. End of Evangelion is among the most furious I've ever been watching a movie.
Aug 11, 2017 10:35 AM
It should be noted that I hate Hideaki Anno's work in general and think he's a hack. I think the movie is competent as it is due to the other director on the movie, Shinji Higuchi.

It had been established that "Shin" is supposed to mean "new" in this context. It's why Toho decided against selling the movie as Godzilla: Resurgence.

This is not a "Punk" interpretation of Godzilla. Godzilla vs. Hedorah is closer to that. The abhorrent Godzilla: Final Wars os closer to that. I don't know where you feel the "pinkness" coming from. The government misfits banding together to come up with a plan? There's hardly anything "punk" there outside of them not fitting in.

There are definitely angsty conservatives undertones to this movie, even overtones. I do not understand how you missed it. You have bitterness over Japan's heeling to the US. You have young men angry at a government for not responding to an impossible situation due to democratic safeguards. You have those same young men defeating Godzilla at the end on their own. It's pretty cut and dry. The movie is anti-politics, whereas the original series of movies held the upmost optimism over the UN. Politics of this nature have no place in a Godzilla movie as far as I can see as it distracts from the themes of Godzilla himself. Godzilla changes from a metaphor for WMDs and a personification of nature itself into a metaphor over how the Japanese government as it is is too incompetent to get anything done. I have a problem with that.

There's plenty of Japanese fortitude on display to be sure, but we never see it from the Japanese PEOPLE. You see some shots of children in disaster centers, but nothing showing off the community and strength of the civilians of Japan. All you see is the people in government, and that is kind of creepy and decidedly not humble. The main protagonist is anything but.

I would also point out this was not a "passion" project for Anno. He had to be convinced to do it. This strikes me as a oter scenario where a director comes to the franchise and alters it to match his sensibilities for him to feel invested in working on it, much like Godzilla 1998 or Godzilla: Final Wars.

You also picked the wrong challenge to give me as it is incredibly easy for me to point to Godzilla films done better than this one. At least give me limitations. There is the original film of course, which is perfect at what it does. Mothra vs. Godzilla, Godzilla vs. Biollante, GMK, Godzilla vs. Destoroyah, I could go on. But there is one film that is easily comparable to Shin, above all others. The Return of Godzilla, which was just released on Bluray in the Fall for the first time ever. In the 1984 film Godzilla appears out of the ocean to attack Japan in the modern age. The rest of the film is about the Prime Minister of Japan weighing the decision on whether or not to let the US or Russia drop a nuke on Godzilla amongst Tokyo. Meanwhile a group of scientists come up with an underdog alternative plan to deal with Godzilla. They also try injecting Godzilla with a shit-ton of bloods coagulant. The movie is eerily similar to Shin and ROG handles every theme with more grace and subtlety than Shin-Godzilla does. It also has much better music and is more graphic in terms of seeing people directly killed by Godzilla. It is extremely humble and GETS what Godzilla is almost better than any other Godzilla film. It may not have the flashy effects of Shin-Godzilla or the stupid body horror edge, but it is a superior film on many levels. If I didn't know any better I would say that Shin is ripping that movie off wholesale. So, that.
Aug 11, 2017 6:35 AM
I'm a traditionalist, granted. But it's just shocking to me just how much more Godzilla 2014 grasped the spirit of the character than it's native follow-up.
Aug 11, 2017 4:40 AM