Category Archives: Harry’s Reviews
Last Days (2005)
Written and Directed by Gus Van Sant
Last Days is the second worst movie I’ve ever seen. No, let’s not even say ‘movie’—second worst bunch of footage, as Greg DeLiso would put it. There are two-hour long conspiracy theory videos on YouTube I’d prefer to rewatch sooner than this.
Pacific Rim (2013)
Directed by Guillermo del Toro
Written by Travis Beacham & Guillermo del Toro
Note: If you haven’t seen Pacific Rim, this review could be considered spoiler-ific, and even a little esoteric—so, you know, see the film first.
I love Tokusatsu. For those of you who are baka gaijins, Tokusatsu (or Toku) is a genre of Japanese media. Though it literally means ‘special effects’, a better translation would be ‘cool stuff with men in rubber suits in it.’ Doctor Who airs as a tokusatsu in Japan, perfectly fittingly. On top of that, I love mecha anime—the sheer fact that an entire genre has sprung up from the concept of giant robots punching things is a testament to the beauty of the concept. I’m also a big fan of Guillermo del Toro and his films. So when Pacific Rim went into production, I was highly optimistic, given that I am precisely the choir to which del Toro is supposedly preaching.
Why, then, was Pacific Rim so disappointing?
Although fellow smugster Alex Hiatt dislikes the film far more than I do, I agree with him that the main problem with the film is that it fails to execute its premise entertainingly. But the question I’m asking is, why?
One answer is that it’s not Toku enough. Not just in the obvious sense that the robots punching each other are, woefully, CGI rather than actors in rubber suits, but because the entire film represents a compromised version of what del Toro is crafting a love letter to.
Written & Directed by Cody Clarke
I feel strange writing this. Not just because a personal blog post about Shredder led me to corresponding with Cody, and subsequently becoming a guest writer for this site in the first place, but because Shredder as a creative work is now so familiar to me it’s difficult to imagine being someone who hasn’t seen it.
The Sundance film festival has become so large, powerful, and popular in recent years that they’ve begun shipping it on over to my neck of the woods, the United Kingdom. Only a couple of movies make the trip, presumably the best, or at least, the ones the yanks think we’ll like. I saw three while I was there. Here are my thoughts.