Star Wars Failed With Established Universe While Star Trek Succeeded Expanding Into The Infinite Unknown!

Recent Star Wars releases have been considered to have flopped since these releases failed to bring in enough revenues to justify the expenses on making the films.  I’m not a Star Wars fanatic and I’m not a somebody who knows the ins and outs of a film industry, and so I’m just reinforcing the current view that recent Star Wars films are not doing too well.  Especially in China, Star Wars films failed to fill theater seats spectacularly.

Disney is probably wondering why this is happening to Star War releases and why the Chinese are not liking these releases!  Chinese film market is getting bigger each day, and Hollywood cannot really afford to ignore such a big international film market.  Latest Solo: A Star Wars Story release is considered to be the biggest flop of all Star Wars releases as this film failed in China in the most spectacular way.

The video above stated that very little amount of money Solo: A Star Wars Story brought in from China right from the getgo of the opening night.  Unfortunately, the video presenter stated the amount in Yen instead in Yuan.  Yuan or RMB is accurately a Chinese currency and Yen is a Japanese currency.  This is a big difference.  Besides this point, the video points out Star Wars isn’t doing great at all in China for unknown reasons.  After all, worse Western movies had fared better in China before!

In my opinion, I don’t think recent Star Wars releases are that bad.  I haven’t yet watched Solo: A Star Wars Story release just yet, and so I can’t speak for this one yet.  Nonetheless, the other releases are not that bad, but they aren’t that exciting either.  In my opinion, Star Wars have become too boring since the major plotlines seem to be revolved around the struggling of known factions within a Star Wars universe.  Yes, there are few factions in this universe, and so the story could be expanded somewhat.  Nonetheless, recent releases fail to connect with me in regarding what would make Star Wars great!

Unlike Star Trek with infinite opening plotlines, Star Wars’ universe is an established universe which gives not a lot of incentive in exploring the unknown, thus it’s less exciting than Star Trek’s infinite opening plotlines.  Since there is little incentive in exploring the unknown, Star Wars’ plotlines revolve around personifying the relationships of the characters within the known universe.  Too much talking with not enough exciting actions would not be good for Star Wars, but too much vice versa would not also be good for Star Wars.  Recent releases of Star Wars films seem to be lacking in lightsaber fights and too much talking.

I think the lightsaber fight scenes are what make Star Wars unique.  Instead of getting to see more lightsaber fight scenes and the force at work, I see a lot of talking.  I’m watching Star Wars not for a perfect drama act but for action and the adventures that could unfold within this universe.  Furthermore, the dark side characters in recent Star Wars releases seem to be made of wussy!  For an example, in Star Wars: The Force Awakens Kylo Ren is considered to be a failed character in my opinion.  He was supposed to be very strong with the dark force and yet he failed utterly in putting up a fight against Rey who just discovered her powerful untrained force.  It tells me that the story is too convenient as it wants to bring in a quick conclusion to the Star Wars: The Force Awakens’ plotline.  Shouldn’t Rey need to have struggled a little more against Kylo Ren so the evil character is definitely a challenger and not made of wussy stuff which gives Rey little incentive to train?

Failed memorable scenes and not enough memorable actions are the things, in my opinion, have failed to boost Star Wars internationally.  Especially in China, Chinese are so familiar with skill fighters in Kung Fu fantasy films, and so I don’t think a few little boring lightsaber fights would be enough to wow Chinese filmgoers.  Furthermore, boring talkative characters in Star Wars are not going to win over Chinese filmgoers too since Chinese filmgoers are not too familiar with the whole Star Wars universe in the first place.  Since Star Wars is an established universe, there is not much to elaborate on the plotlines to make the Star Wars universe bigger and more exciting.  In contrast, Star Trek’s universe could be forever expanded into the unknown!

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Jean-Claude Van Johnson Rocks Hard

I did a quick review of Jean-Claude Van Johnson series on Amazon, and the review below is a copy of that.  Anyhow, I hope you don’t fault me for grammatical error and such as I was writing it in a haste.  Enjoy!

(By clicking on this image you are going to visit Amazon for this product.  I have an Amazon Associate account and so if you purchase this product I will get a commission.  Just want to clarify this for you.)

Two episodes in and I love it.  I saw this series on Amazon a few times when I browsed for other movies and shows, but I always skipped this one as I thought oh come on J.C.?  I watched Bloodsport so long ago I hardly remember any detail of this movie, but because of Bloodsport, I have always known who J.C. is.  Nonetheless, I couldn’t remember why I stopped watching his other movies, and he is definitely much older now.  I guess I skipped Jean-Claude Van Johnson series because I thought J.C. was just being the old J.C., but I was so wrong.  After watching Jean-Claude Van Johnson, I don’t care if J.C. is being old or new J.C. because this series rocks hard.  J.C. also makes fun of himself in the series and that is making the series a lot more fun than it could have been.  His acting is pretty good in this series, and now I still don’t know why I watched so few of his older movies.  I recommend this series to anyone who wants to reminisce the past a bit but I assure you that J.C. is rocking hard in this new series and you may love it a lot.

Predestination Movie Review (Time Travel Science Fiction)

Just finished watching “Predestination” (2014 Australian science fiction film), and I have to say this movie is a time travel gem in science fiction.  We all love the idea of time travel, because it allows us to imagine that we can go back in time to fix our mistakes or to change something for the better and so forth.  Nonetheless, “Predestination” isn’t similar to other time travel movies I’d seen.  “Predestination” is unique in a way that it puts way more limitation on time travel mechanism than any other time travel movies I’d seen.

The script in “Predestination” weaves the order of interwoven plots together quite nicely, and only by watching the whole film closely that I could be so amused by the ending of the movie.  Nonetheless, as the movie had gone through 75% of its timeline, I already figured out the essence of the main plot, but I was still amazed how the ending created even more interest about the whole movie for me.

The actors in “Predestination” are amazing in the movie.  They are quite believable in their roles.  Nonetheless, if you had watched the movie already you would probably know why it’s even more amazing to see these actors pull through since the main plot of the movie depends on them to surprise you as the viewer to the very end.  Is it hard for these actors to surprise you with the movie’s main plot in the end?  I don’t know, but at least in the movie you can see these actors pull you in throughout the movie to very end, even after the essence of the main plot was revealed.

While watching, at first the movie feels like a low budget movie, but after you sink deeper into the movie the low budget feeling is no longer there but the other feeling creeps in which is as if how you would praise how intelligent the plot is.  After finishing watching the film I had to go online to get more clarification on the main plot, because the ending does leave you feel like something is missing — in a good way.  You would question how would the whole main plot of the movie is even possible in the first place.  Especially at the end of the movie you probably would wonder what’s the point of time travel after all.  You would know what I meant by that if you had already watched the movie.

According to Wikipedia, “Predestination” was directed by The Spierig Brothers.  The screenplay is based on “All You Zombies” (1959) short story by Robert A. Heinlein.  The main stars in the movie are Ethan Hawke, Sarah Snook, and Noah Taylor.  I definitely recommend this movie for viewers who like to read books and watch movies on Time Travel.  It’s a science fiction for sure, and so I think the science fiction people will like it too.

Amazing CG Effects Make Gantz: 0 A Stunning Anime To Watch On Netflix

If you got Netflix, you definitely want to check out Gantz: 0 3D animation.  The computer graphics for this animation is the best I have seen so far for this type of entertainment.  Basically, it’s a full length movie.  The story is a bit weird, because there are monsters and people in high tech suits.  Nonetheless, the main plot is coherent enough to allow you enjoy the movie as a movie.  People who are following Japanese anime shouldn’t be surprised how the story of Gantz: 0 would unfold, because Gantz: 0 is an anime but in 3D.  This 3D anime’s CG effects are so amazing.  It’s so amazing to the point that it got me thinking if I’m playing a video game, I wish my video game got to be this realistic and amazing.  I hope the CG effects that created Gantz: 0 would eventually be adopted by the video game industry.  It would be stunning indeed.

Movie Review: Schindler’s List

By now, almost everyone who has had intense interest in the history of the massacre of Jews in World War II by the Nazis should have heard of Oskar Schindler.  Thanks to Steven Spielberg’s “Schindler’s List” film, Oskar Schindler is ever firmer being immortalized in our hearts.  I’ve watched “Schindler’s List” many times, and each time I get so emotional by finishing it.  The film is amazing, because it’s so meticulously painting the evil deeds that the Nazis had done.

Although the film was released in 1993, but it’s timeless.  Thanks to the fact that Oskar Schindler was a real person who had made real contribution to humankind by preserving lives while others killed in World War II.  Half of the battle is won by having a really good script, and so the other half would require great actors.  Liam Neeson is just amazing in his role of Oskar Schindler.  In the film, he isn’t overacting, and so his just right method of acting as Oskar Schindler brings the real Oskar Schindler back to life and onto the big screen.

I don’t usually like black and white movies, but somehow I’ve never felt that I’d been watching black and white movie whenever I’m watching Schindler’s List.  I like how Steven Spielberg had one particular artistic moment to be included in this black and white (Schindler’s List) movie is when a little girl runs around in a red dress.  In one of the earliest scenes, we see her in a red dress, running to hide under the bed; later on we see her lifeless body, in a red dress, carting off to be burned.

“Schindler’s List” is one of those films that I won’t mind watching over and over again.  I like to imagine when all hope is lost, there is an Oskar Schindler somewhere who would genuinely light a torch to eradicate some darkness.

The film depicts Oskar Schindler as an opportunistic man, because at first he was all about making the money.  After seeing so many Jews were killed off by the Nazis, Oskar Schindler took on the mission to save the Jews that he employed in his factories.  He went out of his way by spending off his fortune to save as many Jews as he could.  Because of Schindler’s audacity in saving his Jews, generations of Jews survived after World War II.

In summary, I think “Schindler’s List” is one of those timeless masterpieces.  In my opinion, the film does a good job on bringing Oskar Schindler’s figure back to life.  Besides “Schindler’s List” as being a good film, it has a very powerful message in which we all can treasure till the end of humankind’s time.  The message is of course, regardless of skin color and religion, lives matter.  I think “Schindler’s List” is a perfect movie for showing in a history class so the students can learn more about the horrors of World War II.

TV Show Review: Outlander

If you’ve gotten Amazon Prime and considered to subscribe to Starz, then you should watch Outlander.  I’m in the process of canceling my Showtime add-on subscription, because I signed up with Starz add-on subscription in Amazon Prime.  It’s Outlander TV show/series which attracted me to Starz in the first place.  I’ve to say I’m not regretting this decision at all.  I think Outlander is an amazing TV show.

Personally, I’m falling in love with Caitriona Balfe’s Outlander character known as Claire Randall.  This is my first time seeing Caitriona Balfe on screen, because I don’t think I have seen her in a show before.  Basically, Caitriona Balfe brings Claire Randall alive as a World War II nurse in 1945 and as Claire Fraser in 1700s.

World War II has just ended, and Claire’s future is uncertain.  Well, she thinks with the war is behind her, things should be picking up for her and Frank Randall (her husband).  During the war, Frank and Claire got separated so often that they rarely had time to nurture a relationship.  After all, a nurse and an officer/spy would definitely be quite intense in their respectable World War II roles, and so it’s quite reasonable for them to be separated during wartime.

Things speed up when Claire and Frank decide to have a second honeymoon in Scottish Highlands.  Claire isn’t completely falling in love with archaeology, but she has sympathy for the profession since she has had an archaeologist as an uncle.  Frank though, is deeply in love with the history of his own genealogy, and so a second honeymoon in Scottish Highlands is a well planned honeymoon.  So they thought!

After the trip to Craigh na Dun (similar to Stonehenge site), Claire decides to go back to Craigh na Dun on her own to take a second look on the herbs there.  After all, Claire is very interested in herbs and medicines.  Unfortunately, this is one trip which turns her future, or shall we say her past upside down.  A fairytale ensues.

Outlander’s main plot exaggerates real Scottish history with fictional characters such as Jamie Fraser (and so on).  Thanks to wonderful actors such as Caitriona Balfe (as Claire Randall), Sam Heughan (as Jamie Fraser), and Tobias Menzies (as Johnathan “Black Jack” Randall and Frank Randall), Outlander pulls me into a wonderful historical/fairytale timeline of Scotland.  The show gets really intense in the second season, because Black Jack Randall’s perverse grows evermore intense.  Jamie Fraser’s heroic character takes a big turn when Black Jack Randall exercises his perverseness on Jamie.

In summary, Outlander is a very good TV show, but children should stay away from this show since nudity occurs quite frequently.  The actors in the show are great in their roles.  I think Tobias Menzies does wonder with his double role as Frank Randall and Johnathan “Black Jack” Randall.  It’s great that Caitriona Balfe pulls off as a modern woman who learns how to live among the Scottish people of two centuries earlier in Scottish Highlands.  In my opinion, Sam Heughan is so believable as a warrior of Scottish Highlands, and he brings amazing chemistry onto the screen whenever his role and Caitriona Balfe’s role collide.  With these wonderful actors and amazing storyline, I won’t be surprised if you, yourself, are going to be fully immersed in this fairytale.