Archive for the ‘movies’ Category

Green Lantern Fan Trailor

May 25th, 2009 by Susie

Here is a really well done fan trailor for a hypothetical green lantern movie starring Nathan Fillion.

watch it on youtube

Watchman Saturday Morning Cartoon!

March 26th, 2009 by Susie

I saw the movie this week and I wil write about eventualy, but I had to post this video I just ran into on you tube.
Watchmen cartoon

It is brilliant! And not that implausible, I recall cartoons being made from innapropriate source material pretty regularly, although none of them spring to mind just this second.

Also It’s Just Some Random Guy has been doing a Watchmen series as well.
Random guy watchmen #1
random guy watchmen #2
random guy watchmen #3

Regardless of how I felt of the movie, the release has wrought these and that is good.

ReadComics Podcast #029

March 4th, 2009 by Martin

In this episode of the ReadComics podcast, Marty, Florence, Jason and Susie talk about the biggest comic book event of the week: the Watchmen movie. Marty and Florence saw a sneak preview of the movie last night, but we took pains not to spoil anything. (Short review: It’s AWESOME, go see it!!!) We also discussed the following topics: Marty and Florence’s visitor Flat Stanley, movie special effects and CGI (at length, including Watchmen, Star Wars, Hellboy II, Pans Labyrinth, the Oscars and Batman), Dr. Manhattan’s BIG BLUE PENIS, other movies we want to see this summer (Super Capers, Wolverine, Harry Potter, Year One), the possibility of an Elfquest movie, Johnny Hiro, Scott Pilgrim, a bunch of comics we have read recently (Wonder Woman, Tek Jensen, Ender’s Game, Batman), Kevin Smith’s batman, the trend toward comic book continuations of TV shows (Farscape, Buffy, Veronica Mars, Pushing Daisies), and Jason gives a shout-out to the GridCycle GeekCast, a new video game podcast.

Listen to Podcast Episode #029 (30 MB, 66 minutes)

Watchmen iPhone Game (MMO)

March 3rd, 2009 by Martin

Those who know me realize that I haven’t been posting much on here because I’ve been focusing most of my extra-curricular efforts on developing a puzzle game for the iPhone. But that’s not why I’m writing today! I actually just read over at that there is going to be a Watchmen game for the iPhone released at the same time as the movie (this Friday). As far as I know, this is also going to be the first MMO (massively multiplayer online) game for the iPhone. There is also a video of some interviews with the developers, and it shows some of the gameplay too. Interesting stuff.

New Frontiersman (watchmen promotional) site

January 28th, 2009 by Martin

manhattanonthemoon1Check out all the cool links on this blog-style New Frontiersman website. There’s some fun photoshoppery in there. I’m (continually) getting more excited about the movie.

According to this interesting article, WB and 20th Century fox have finally reached a settlement, and the movie should come out as scheduled (March 6th). We’ll see! (The article also contains a bunch of other interesting comic news, including DC folks getting laid off.)

Splash Page – Comic Book Movie News

December 30th, 2008 by Martin

My co-worker Sheldon sent me a link to Splash Page, a blog about comic book movies. They’ve got a lot of great stuff on there, and (presumably because they’re owned/operated by MTV) updates are quite frequent, with some of them even featuring real reporting. (As in, original stories, or real interviews, that sort of thing.) Here’s what it says in their sidebar:

You’ve turned the page to the place where panels and popcorn meet. From coverage of comic-inspired flicks to that buzzed-about graphic novel that’s being primed for the big-screen, you’ll find it all here at MTV’s Splash Page. Check throughout the day for breaking news, exclusive chats with Hollywood stars and comic legends, and first looks at the blockbusters of tomorrow.

Thomas Scioli (of Godland fame) did their header and logo and background graphic (pictured above). As you may have noticed, I’ve added the link to our sidebar.

Special, a superpowers movie

November 3rd, 2008 by Martin

Everyone should check out the preview for this new movie called Special, starring Michael Rapaport, about a guy who thinks he has superpowers because of some new drugs he’s taking. It looks to be both interesting and funny.

I first read about this on IO9, but they heard about it from Biology in Science Fiction, which I had not heard of before.

The movie is supposed to be in theaters on Nov. 21st. I’ll see you there.

Blotchmen and other Watchmen Parodies

October 29th, 2008 by Martin

I’ve been meaning to write something about a whole slew of Watchmen parodies that have started cropping up all over the net in anticipation of the movie, and seeing Kevin Cannon’s Blotchmen today reminded me of this endeavor. Blotchmen was created as part of the 24 Hour Comics Day event right here in Minneapolis. (I should have at least stopped by to check it out while it was happening. Maybe next year.) I think it’s especially cool because as well as parodying Watchmen, it also pays homage to a couple of my favorite children’s books at the same time. Just go read it!

Back when I was looking for this stuff, I discovered the official watchmen movie site hosts a feature/page they call The Gunga Diner, that looks to basically just aggregate all the Watchmen parody stuff it can find. It’s cool, but what I don’t like is that there are a lot of entries that don’t cite their sources. Maybe they just had the stuff emailed to them, but the Watchmen Peanuts sketch they host can easily be found to have originated from Evan “Doc” Shaner’s DeviantArt account. (Looks like it wasn’t a totally original idea, as Jeff Parker did something similar a while back.) Likewise the Lil’ Watchmen comic Gungan Diner hosts can be found (with quite a bit more digging necessary) over at the Silver Rage Archive/TOC.

An image that Gunga Diner doesn’t actually have listed is this awesome Jay Ward’s The Watchmen sketch by Jay Fosgitt, AKA, Four Panel Hero. (Jay Ward created Rocky and Bullwinkle.)

KO Fight Club, who I have linked to before, because it is a board gaming webcomic, has a whole page devoted to how they parody Watchmen (and another page about why).

Here’s a cool illustration of Watchmen Watches.

The Watchmen Movie site also hosts a page that links to a bunch of Watchmen fan films. I haven’t really watched them all yet, so I don’t know if that page is better about sourcing its material.

And finally, if you haven’t seen it already, the Mad Magazine folks made a seven page Watchmen Parody (PDF format) in their signature style. It was apparently distributed at San Diego Comic Con earlier this year.

Marvel Zombies fan film

August 19th, 2008 by Martin

This fan film is not for the weak of stomach.

Originally found by Rurik on Bam! Kapow!, where you can find some other fan films. (Not as many, of course, as you can find on youtube, where there are literally hundreds.)

Dead Space, animated comic

August 16th, 2008 by Martin

What’s up with all the animated comics these days? I watched the first episode of The Watchmen on iTunes, and then a week or two ago I noticed this (available for free) in the Playstation Store on my PS3. So far I’ve downloaded the first four, but only watched the first three.

Dead Space is a video game that’s going to come out later this year, but to market it, they’ve gotten Ben Templesmith and Anthony Johnston to do a comic book prequel. Sounds like it’ll be a six-issue run. Art by Templesmith, who did Fell and 30 Days of Night, among other pretty things.

The animated version of the comic is just okay. I think I’d probably like it more if I were reading the comic rather than hearing it spoken. That having been said, the voice acting isn’t terrible, and it certainly could have been worse. I think one of the things I imagine being hard to do about any animated version of a comic book is the pacing. I would assume that’s why it feels like we’re always looking at the same image for far too long with the animation basically having to be on the screen as long as it takes to “say” the printed words.

Anyway, I might want to try and track down this comic, because I do really like Ben Templesmith’s artwork. You can read an interview with Ben Templesmith about Dead Space over at Newsarama.

WATCHFRIENDS — Superfriends/Watchmen Trailer Mashup

August 13th, 2008 by Martin

Someone calling himself Vic DiGital said it took him about a day to create this awesome mashup. (Link via my new favorite blog, Topless Robot.)

Captain Hammer: Be Like Me!

July 17th, 2008 by Martin

If you’re not already watching Dr. Horrible’s Sing Along Blog, then get your butt on over there, and check it out. Acts I and II are already available, and Act III is set to be released on Saturday. Susie posted about Dr. Horrible quite a while ago, but now it’s finally here, and by all reports it’s AWESOME.

It was so great, in fact, that the site went down due to high traffic the first night, and they had to switch servers to get it back up and running.

Anyway, Captain Hammer, who is Dr. Horrible’s arch nemesis, (played by Nathan Fillion of Firefly fame) has his own comic, which you can read on Dark Horse’s myspace page. It’s pretty awesome, and I actually really dig the art, drawn by Eric Canete, which is almost crayon-like at times.

You can also buy some Dr. Horrible swag, but the Captain Hammer shirts aren’t nearly as cool as the style he wears in the comic. (I’d totally buy a shirt if it looked more like the comic.)

Hellboy 2 (I apologize for all the run on sentences)

July 13th, 2008 by Susie

I just got back from seeing Hellboy: the Golden Army.  I had been planning to see it because I had liked (but not loved) the first one and because director Gulliermo Del Toro had truly impressed me with Pan’s Labyrinth.  But of the summer movies I had put on my to see list (such as Forgetting Sarah Marshall, Iron Man, Wall-E, Hancock, and Dark Knight) I was not anticipating it the way I was some of the others.  Which is why I was so pleasantly surprised to have loved it.  I mean really loved it!  I mean gasping with shock, laughing hysterically, wishing for a pause button to get a look at all the cool creatures stuffed in a scene, and bouncing giddily waiting for whatever it threw at me, loved it!  It was so geared to my sensibilities, reminding me at times of Star Wars, the Princess Bride, the Muppets, Crouching Tiger, LOTR; that I don’t know if people who don’t share my tastes would love it as much.  In fact of the thirty or so other people in the theater only a man a few seats away from me (who happened to have a fidgety, but enthusiastic, six year old with him) was not just the only one laughing and ooing at the same places I was, but also the only one displaying any kind of reaction at all.  Perhaps it was just a subdued crowd, I certainly did not hear any one complaining or dissing the film on the way out, but nobody was praising it either.  I am sure it will not beat Hancock at the box office, which is sad in it’s own right because it is a far superior film.  I think it is more sad that most six year olds will be seeing Wall-E (which I did think was excellent) for the second or third time instead of Hellboy 2.  Because it was seeing similar movies at that tender age that had me grow up to be the kind of person who loves them at this  advanced and tender age.  I definitely recommend it, if only to gage what people who are not me thought of it.  Also I now am very glad that Del Toro has signed on to direct the Hobbit.  I am only sorry that Peter Jackson’s team did such a good job of establishing the look of Middle Earth, because I would have loved to see what Del Toro would have come up with from scratch.

Zebraman (2004) — a superhero movie

June 16th, 2008 by Martin

Zebraman starts off as an average joe, a schoolteacher who can barely pay attention at staff meetings, and whose children don’t care for him, and whose wife is almost certainly cheating on him. He sews his costume at night, ripping it the first time he tries it on, and daring himself to go across the street for a can of soda. It’s not even an original costume — Zebraman was a failed tv show from decades before.

We watched this Japanese import with english overdub (I didn’t bother trying to figure out whether the disk had english subtitles, and it seemed like it was going to be the kind of movie where it doesn’t mater anyway).

Turns out it’s the schoolteacher’s destiny to be Zebraman. There is an army of little green aliens living in the school gymnasium (I always thought this was true at my school too), and even some secret government agents have taken notice.

Perhaps the most surprising thing about this movie was that the computer graphics didn’t suck terribly to go along with everything else that sucked terribly. I guess the director was someone pretty famous, but I don’t honestly know how this movie got made. (Although I suppose mighty morphin’ power rangers also got (gets?) made, so there you go.) The best part of the movie was the first fight scene, with a man wearing a giant crab costume and whose weapons were a pair of scissors in both hands. Also fairly amusing was a dream sequence involving the “Zebra Nurse“.

Oh yeah, and the tagline of the movie: Black and White Ecstasy! Seriously. Avoid at all costs… unless, you just want a movie to laugh along with, in which case, this is pretty amusing.

Wanted Vol. 1

June 3rd, 2008 by Martin

I just finished the Wanted TPB. Honestly, I’m not sure how I felt about it. Bloody? yes. Violent? yes. Fucked up story that I can’t tell if it’s supposed to be satire or a philosophical statement on the futility and stupidity of empathy with your fellow mankind? Yes.

I’m looking forward to the movie, of course. I’d wanted to read this before that comes out, and it was coincidence that my co-worker Ben brought this in for me to borrow. There are a number of interesting plot twists and surprises that I’m looking forward to in the movie. It clearly won’t have the same impact as if I hadn’t read the comic, but I think that’s ok.

Almost as interesting as the comic was Brian K. Vaughn’s introduction, where he says Wanted has “the bravest, most interesting finale to a comic book ever”. Above that he says “Those of you who refuse to see what the conclusion is really saying will probably want to burn this beautiful collection the second you put it down.” I’d love to have a conversation with Vaughn about what he thinks those final pages were saying. I don’t think I agree with him, but neither did I want to burn the book the second I put it down. I can imagine what he thinks it’s supposed to be saying, but I don’t know if I’m right. I think I’ll probably bring this up in the next podcast.

Anyway, Wanted is a well produced (written, drawn, colored) comic, with a very interesting premise. The super villains teamed up (in the 60s, I think), and they won. They beat all the superheroes, and wiped them off the face of the planet. They’ve been in charge ever since. Go read it! Or, wait for the movie, watch that, then read it! Your choice, asshole.

Southland Tales: The Prequel Saga

May 20th, 2008 by Martin

awesome artwork by Brett WeldeleThis comic was awesome for many reasons. First of all, it is an interesting story that ties into an interesting movie. Don’t confuse interesting with comprehensible though, because it’s not.

Florence and I rented and watched Southland Tales (the movie, directed by Richard Kelly, who wrote this comic) a couple of weeks ago from Amazon Unbox (direct to tivo, baby!), and watched it without great expectation. We’d both read mixed reviews of the movie, but I especially had secretly hoped that it would be one of those masterpieces that defies critical acclaim and rises above the popular mass market appeal. I would say that the movie failed in this regard, but that, having finished the comic book Prequel this afternoon/evening, the comic and movie together actually do make up a fantastic and epic story that, while not terribly genius, is completely worthy of the time investment required.

Since I more or less enjoyed this, I’m going to focus on the good aspects, figuring the bad aspects have probably been covered elsewhere. (You can just go read the reviews over at Rotten Tomatoes, where Southland Tales has a 34% freshness rating.) I think what I enjoyed the most about both comic and movie is that they give you a lot to examine and think about. They both operate on many levels at once, which is, now that I think about it, also one of the things that I most liked Donnie Darko (Richard Kelly’s other “cult classic” film). Incidentally, I keep wanting to abbreviate Richard Kelly as R. Kelly, which is wrong on almost as many levels.

The comic is interjected with excerpts from a script to a movie called “The Power”, which was supposed to have been written by one of the main characters, Krista Now. Krista is a porn star, and (in the comic, at least), supposedly has telepathic powers that she attained while everyone else on board her airplane went insane. She wrote the script while under hypnosis, as a response to the book of revelations.

The plot is totally convoluted and involves time travel (or the fourth dimension); a futuristic company named Treer that claims to have developed a technology they call fluid karma that uses quantum entanglement to broadcast electricity; a stupidly violent liberal terrorist group that called itself Marxist, but really did not resemble any kind of thought-out political philosophy whatsoever; the 2008 political election; a recent history that includes two nuclear terrorist attacks in Texas; and a government agency called USIDent that forces you to register before using the internet. These are all related, and culminate in an end-of-the-world type scenario that I won’t go into details about so I don’t give anything away.

I also wanted to give credit to Brett Weldele, whose awesome artwork was really inspiring. This is not your average length trade paperback. This thing is pretty hefty with over 300 pages. Sure, some of those are straight-up text and script, but there is a fantastic amount of really interesting artwork here, and it never gets repetitive or dull, in fact it feels quite the opposite.

I will say that the movie makes a lot more sense in retrospect, so given a choice, I’d try and go with chronological order and read the comic book first. Oddly enough, however, I think the comic book made a lot more sense having already seen the movie, so it’s possible this is just one of those things that requires multiple viewings to fully appreciate. Unfortunately, fully appreciate does not mean fully understand. It’s just not that kind of story. Understanding is secondary to experience, in this case.

MUTO–Stop animation graffiti

May 16th, 2008 by Martin

Blu, who is, I believe from Bologna, created this absolutely amazing stop animated video that you just have to see to believe. Are animated videos comics? If so, this definitely qualifies as a live-action comic. (Hmmm. This may take more thinking to categorize.) But anyway, it’s well worth a watch!

MUTO a wall-painted animation by BLU from blu on Vimeo.
(Via BoingBoing.)

Iron Man #47 – “The Birth of the Power!” (1968)

May 12th, 2008 by Martin

I’ll admit that the movie made me do it. I decided I wanted to read some Iron Man. I never have before, and I didn’t know if it made sense to start at the beginning, so I just decided to see what was at the library, and read some of that. There I found the collection The Many Armors of Iron Man, which starts with this comic, Iron Man #47.

Much to my surprise, when I cracked open the TPB, I discovered that this is the comic that tells the first part of the story from the movie! I looked for some sign that the trade was simply a movie tie in, but I didn’t see any. I’m sure I could probably dig online here and find some indication of whether this book was published before or after the script for the movie, but it probably doesn’t matter. It tells Iron Man’s “origin story”, so it’s a natural choice to base a movie after.

I quickly finished the comic, and now I’ll give you my impressions. (Note: SPOILERS AHEAD!)


My favorite not actually a comic book, comic book stuff

May 9th, 2008 by Susie

I love comic books, that is pretty obvious, but I think I may like these things even more.


1) Marvel/DC  

No I am not talking about the rival comic publishers, or their occasional cross company crossovers.  I am talking about the youtube webseries starring action figures of both companies most popular characters.  It started as a parody of, the hi I am a mac and I am a PC comercials.  And it was funny.  Superman played the uptight PC role and Spiderman was the laid back Mac. It worked as a parody of the comercial as well as poking fun at the characters and their respective companies. Observe


It is clear that the creator Some Random Guy, has a deep affection for the characters he has borrowed. As the series progressed more characters were worked in and the format shifted from the mac ads formula to a narrative.  The Universe threatening crisis that concluded the first season was far more exciting and engaging to me than anything being published by either company right now.  The second season Marvel/DC: Happy Hour has just started.  I must admit I was more giddy about this than about the upcoming release of the Dark Knight.


2) Year One 

This webcomic strip is currently on a long term hiatus, presumably so Matt Parkinson the creator can find work that will pay.  The archive is definitely worth taking a look at.  The first month or two of strips can be skipped unless you want to see how far his skill as a stripist(?) stripper(?) progressed.  The premise is simple, all the marvel characters are children that go to school together. The charecthers are pretty adorable my favorite being the hyper and a bit dimwitted Speedball

Sometimes the strips are simple gags like Beast from X-Men morphing into Cookie Monster at the sight of a plate cookies.  Other times they are dissections of the often ridiculously complicated Marvel continuity.  Here is a strip featuring  the kids from the school across the road.



3) Cat Tales.  This a long runing series of fanfiction.  There are currently 5 books and at least 2 spinoff projects.  So far I have only read the first seven chapters of book one.  It centers around a relationship between Batman and Catwoman, but whole batcast is featured.  It is very well written and a pretty funny and compelling look into their heads.  IUt also is conveniently available to download in PDF, making it easy to transfer to portable devices.

So that is it, my favorite comic related stuff.  Ooooh!  One more.  Larry Niven’s essay Man Of Steel, Women of Kleenex.  It was written in the seventies and deals with the problematic realities of procreation for Superman and Lois Lane. It’s funny y’all.  It was collected in his short story collection All the Myriad Ways.

Podcast #003 – We Saw Iron Man!

April 30th, 2008 by Martin

Join us for our third podcast in which we record from an AMC theater while waiting in line for a sneak preview of the new Iron Man film. At the end of the podcast, we also record our impressions after the film, but there are loud spoiler warnings ahead of that in case you don’t want to hear about it before you’ve seen it. (They are relatively minor spoilers, but we do end up discussing and giving our impressions of the final scene in the movie.)

We had a larger cast than usual as we discuss our limited knowledge of Iron Man, the sneak preview, various other movies, LifeLock (identity insurance), The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier & Clay, our final impressions of the movie, and try to answer the burning question: How many costumes has Iron Man worn?

Notes: The podcast also features some musical clips from “Iron Man” by Black Sabath, and what I believe to be a band called Giant Sand covering said classic track. (The latter via Cover Freak.) This is our first real editing job here at Read Comics, so we hope you enjoy it. The speaking portions of this comic were recorded on Marty’s iPhone, which was a gift from his lovely wife and fellow podcaster, Florence. Also, big thanks to everyone we interviewed (badly) in line for the movie. If you’re reading this, leave a comment, cause you were awesome!

Listen to ReadComics Podcast #3 – We Saw Iron Man! (35 min, 16 MB)

Also, go see Iron Man, it was absolutely brilliant!!! (SERIOUSLY!!!!)

Hancock (Superhero Movie)

April 20th, 2008 by Martin

After watching Forbidden Kingdom tonight, I saw a poster for a movie called Hancock with what looked like Will Smith on it. I was drawn to it because it was Will Smith, but the tagline was “There are heroes, there are superheroes, and then there’s Hancock.” Obviously, I needed to do some searching when I got home!

Am I the only person who thinks this movie came out of nowhere?

Watch the trailer: AppleOfficial Site

Here’s a full description (via apple):

There are heroes, there are superheroes, and then there’s Hancock (Will Smith). With great power comes great responsibility – everyone knows that – everyone, that is, but Hancock. Edgy, conflicted, sarcastic, and misunderstood, Hancock’s well-intentioned heroics might get the job done and save countless lives, but always seem to leave jaw-dropping damage in their wake. The public has finally had enough – as grateful as they are to have their local hero, the good citizens of Los Angeles are wondering what they ever did to deserve this guy. Hancock isn’t the kind of man who cares what other people think – until the day that he saves the life of PR executive Ray Embrey (Jason Bateman), and the sardonic superhero begins to realize that he may have a vulnerable side after all. Facing that will be Hancock’s greatest challenge yet – and a task that may prove impossible as Ray’s wife, Mary (Charlize Theron), insists that he’s a lost cause.

Apparently there has been some “viral marketing” for this movie also. As far as I can tell, this is not based on a comic book. After watching and reading about it for the last hour, I’m getting super excited to see this movie.

Upcoming Comic Book movies

March 21st, 2008 by Rurik

There are quite a few movies coming out in the next year that have been produced from our beloved comics. Some will rock; some will suck. But here’s a list of the upcoming releases that I’m looking forward to:

Battlestar Galactica: April 4
Iron Man: May 2
Indiana Jones: May 22
Incredible Hulk: June 13
Wanted: June 27
Hellboy 2: July 11
Batman: The Dark Knight: July 18
The Punisher: September 12
Star Trek: December 25 (this may have been pushed back to 2009)
The Spirit: January 16, 2009
Watchmen: March 5, 2009
Wolverine: May 1, 2009

Unknown dates 2009:
Green Hornet

Confessions of a Superhero

March 16th, 2008 by Martin

Confessions of a Superhero promo photoI just watched Confessions of a Superhero, a documentary about four LA actors (one actress), who work on Hollywood boulevard dressed up as Superman, Batman, the Hulk and Wonder Woman. In some respects, they are little more than glorified pan-handlers, making money from “tips” solicited after posing for photos with tourists.

The documentary actually had superb photography, which may have been its greatest asset. The lives of the actors were mostly rather sad. We ended up wondering whether Batman and Superman were pathological liars. Superman claimed to be the son of a famous dead actress (a claim her sister refutes), and Batman had all kinds of stories about when he used to work for the mob back in Texas.

Throughout the film, there were recurring scenes from interviews taken in this very strange and possibly abandoned house. The photo above was taken in it, and Wonder Woman’s interview was primarily set in a bedroom while she sat on a bare mattress. Florence and I discussed whether this was intentionally done to highlight the similarities between her posing as Wonder Woman and prostitution. There were other scenes that may have also been in the movie primarily to emphasize that comparison.

I would recommend this to anyone who particularly likes documentaries about interesting characters. It will obviously hold some appeal to Comic Book fans, but aside from an apartment full of Superman memorabilia, a glimpse at the Superman Days celebration in Metropolis IL, and some DVD extra scenes set at Comic Con in San Diego, there isn’t really much here that’s comic related.