It makes perfect sense for Warner to commemorate “Batman Year One” from 2011. While it’s not a particularly great movie, we are on the cusp of the release of yet another Batman movie that explores Batman in his early years as the Dark Knight. The re-release of “Batman Year One” is good business especially since it’s about ten years since it was released in 2011 to mixed fanfare. Ten years later, it’s still not a great movie, but it should help psych audiences up for “The Batman.”
I was born in 1983, so most of my education of classic Hanna Barbera cartoons comes from the early days of Cartoon Network on cable television. In the early to mid-nineties, the channel was treasure trove of their classics. Among some of their best on constant rotation was “The Herculoids.” A mix of “Swiss Family Robinson,” “He-Man,” and “Kazar,” the series mixed some great character dynamics and sleek monster designs in what was a show primarily centered around action and adventure.
One of my all time favorite animators and contributors to Warner Bros.’ Termite Terrace, it’s nice to see Tex Avery being given the best treatment. His shorts haven’t aged at all, they’re still wildly funny, absolutely insane, and you’re guaranteed to laugh a few times, even if these shorts aren’t exactly your bag. As a hardcore animation fan, “Screwball Classics” has so far chronicled some of the best from Avery, all uncut and in their original format. Volume 3 offers a lot of the same classic Tex Avery toons that are always worth re-visiting.
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2011 seems like such a long time ago when you consider the career that Jason Momoa has had since then. He’s been in one of the biggest fantasy series of all time, was in a hit comic book movie as an iconic aquatic superhero, has led acclaimed dramas and crime thrillers, and seems to release a new movie or two every single year. Back in 2011 he was simply just a newcomer who was replacing Arnold Schwarzenneger in the reboot of “Conan the Barbarian.”
After the wet fart that was David Ayer’s “Suicide Squad” there was a lot riding on James Gunn’s soft reboot titled “The Suicide Squad.” While there was a lot of pressure on Gunn to deliver, it was no surprise that he did, two fold. This is a man who managed to take a fourth tier superhero team from Marvel Comics and turn them in to beloved superheroes everyone recognizes. With “The Suicide Squad” Gunn gets the ball rolling successfully with a wonderful soft reboot. Now it’s up to DC and Warner to keep the momentum.
Just in time for the holidays, Warner has unleashed a trio of Superman related sets for collecting by Comic book fans and Superman buffs like yours truly. As someone that very much is a hardcore fan of the Man of Steel, these three sets deliver depending on what vision of Superman you ultimately prefer. No matter, Superman is still a fascinating and thrilling superhero, and works well with the television format. Finally after many years of being just available on DVD, Superman The Animated Series: The Complete Series is finally available on Blu-Ray, remastered and complete for the fans. While it isn’t given the deluxe royal treatment that “Batman: The Animated Series” was afforded, it’s a decent boxed set with every nook and cranny of “Superman: The Animated Series” right down to the “Batman/Superman” animated movie.
Simplicity has always been the best friend of the slasher movie. Nine times out of ten the best slasher movies aren’t convoluted or complex. Most times they’re just simple premises with simple motivations but a lot of subtext added throughout the narrative. “Halloween,” “Scream,” “Friday the 13th,” all benefited from being fairly simplicity and so does “You’re Next.” Adam Wingard’s horror thriller came like a wrecking ball back in 2011, sideswiping me and just blowing me out of my seat. Although now he’s headed for the bigger blockbusters, Wingard’s horror outings tend to channel John Carpenter with how they mesh sub-genres.
I’m not too sure what the ultimate plan was for the Dracula character in the larger scheme of things, except the fact that everything had to be rebooted in the new millennium apparently. Everything had to press the reset button, including Dracula. This Dracula was a hunky vampire for the modern age where he would once again roam free to build his army, and do battle with Van Helsing. And he would do it set to rock music that ruled the radio, wreaking havoc to the tune of System of a Down, Linkin Park, and Disturbed, to name a simple few.