Tag Archives: scifi

Movie Review – Life (2017)

Ryan Reynolds.  Jake Gyllenaal.  A murderous space amoeba.

BQB here with a review of Life.

Our tale begins on a happy note.  The crew of the International Space Station has received a sample of soil taken from Mars and returned via a probe.  It contains what seems to be a great scientific discovery, namely living bacteria – proof that life exists beyond Earth.

The crew seeks to study this life form but alas, said bacteria has other ideas in mind.  It’s essentially a high paced monster movie in space, as the crew try to save themselves while also trying to keep the life form from reaching Earth.

One observation is that this is really an ensemble cast.  Reynolds and Gyllenhaal are the two most recognizable stars, but they don’t drive the focus or action of the film.  Crew members Sho, Miranda, Kat, and Hugh (Hiroyuki Sanada, Rebecca Ferguson, Olga Dihovichnaya and Ariyon Bakare, respectively) all get their chance to shine.

Reynolds of Deadpool fame is snarky as always.  One day I’d like to hear the story of why a good looking dude (I’m not gay it’s just an observation) still tries so hard.  Handsome/beautiful people tend to coast on their looks – in my opinion.  Yes, I am discriminatory against the beautiful.

STATUS: Shelf-worthy.  Worth a trip to the theater.

 

 

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Ask the Alien – Help Bookshelf Q. Battler Save the World – 11/12/16

By: Alien Jones, Intergalactic Correspondent

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Greetings Earth Losers.

Before I begin, I’d like to say congratulations to America for concluding its presidential election.

You may have thought this election was tough. In fact, it reminded me of the Flaknarkian election of 29292929 for the position of Illustrious Poobah.

The Flaknarkians are a walrus shaped people.  The male candidate was an elderly walrus with outlandish hair and the female was also an elderly walrus but she had a penchant for falling down all the time.

Hmm…come to think of it, there wasn’t a lot of difference between that election and yours.

Anyway, if your candidate prevailed, congratulations. If your candidate lost, my condolences.

But whether you are happy are sad by the results of this election, fear not, for it is meaningless, as the Mighty Potentate will most certainly take control of your wretched planet at some point anyway.

You may recall that some time ago my supreme overlord, the Mighty Potentate, declared that Bookshelf Q. Battler is the chosen one, the only writer capable of putting out a book so finely crafted that it would inspire the masses to give up on reality television altogether.

It’s been over a year and alas, BQB has yet to publish a novel.

Ergo, to prevent the spread of reality television across the cosmos, His Potentosity is planning a hostile takeover of your planet should BQB fail in his writing efforts.

In other words, start getting used to the idea of being ruled by the Mighty Potentate because it doesn’t look like BQB will ever get his ass into gear.

But you can help BQB and in so doing, save your planet from the Mighty Potentate’s potent potential.

All you need to do is follow BQB on one of the following time wasting social media sites that aliens invented to cause all of you dumb humans to grow dumber, fatter, lazier and more obnoxious and angry about literally everything.

Oh wait. I’ve said too much.

BQB on Twitter

BQB on Facebook

BQB on Wattpad

BQB on Google Plus

BQB is an especially Twitterer.  In fact, he Tweets as much as your incoming president but he is not as orange.

BQB checks in on Facebok and Wattpad regularly but has been letting Google + slide, though he needs to get back to it soon.

So follow him and then once he writes his book you can help him promote it and in effect, save the world from the Mighty Potentate.

In the meantime, if you see BQB screwing around on this pitiful blog, tell him to get his back ass to work on his novel, for the fate of the world is at stake.

Alien Jones is the Bookshelf Battle Blog’s intergalactic correspondent, graciously lending the power of his brain to answer your questions.

Ask the Alien a question and he may very well plug your book or blog in his answer. Ask questions in the comments or tweet them to @bookshelfbattle

Together, we can promote self-published material and ween the masses off reality television, a form of entertainment that Alien Jones’ boss, the maniacal alien despot known as “The Mighty Potentate” despises so much that he’s plotting an invasion of Earth just to stop it.

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BQB’s Badass Writing Prompts – Part 2 – #11-20

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Writing prompts that will muster your gusto and flummox your failures:

#11 – The Love Triangle

Molly posts a special announcement on her preferred time wasting social media site.

She announces that she is engaged to her boyfriend Doug.  She also posts pictures of herself and Doug, along with a close-up of the sparkly diamond that Doug got her.

Molly’s friend/social media follower Kate is confused because Doug sure looks a helluvalot like Steve, her fiancé.  Even worse, that diamond ring looks a lot like the ring that Steve gave her three months ago.

Kate has been beside herself with woe as of late because she thought she had misplaced said ring.

Or did she?  What’s going on?

#12 – For God and Country

Super spy Dex Reynolds is on a mission to retrieve a set of stolen nuclear launch codes.

The only one who can tell our hero where the codes are is an octogenarian cougar by the name of Wrinkles Houlihan.

Wrinkles corners Dex in his boudoir and pops out her dentures.  She removes her oversized rubber underpants and on cue, a bat flies out.

Will Dex take one for the team or will he allow the nuclear codes to remain in the hands of Wrinkles’ master, the evil fiend Dr. Mean Face?

#13 – Killer Doll

Phil moves into a new apartment.  The rooms are bare save for an old, goofy looking doll with googly eyes and stringy yarn hair.

Recently divorced and feeling down, Phil laughs when he sees the doll and decides to keep it on his mantle in the hopes that it will bring him good luck.  He even gives his new friend a name, “Patches” due to the green patch sewed into the doll’s blue pants.

Weeks later, a series of murders occurs in Phil’s new neighborhood.  Every day, Phil turns on the TV only to discover a new report detailing the gruesome murder of one of his neighbors.

Oddly enough, each day, Phil notices that Patches appears to be in a different place on the mantle.  Assuming that he is just seeing things, Phil shrugs it off.

Days pass.  The murders continue. Phil is always in a different place.

Phil continues to believe he is nuts for suspecting the doll, but just to be safe, one night he tosses Patches into his fridge, shuts the door, and goes to bed.

The next morning, Phil wakes up to discover his fridge is open, his doll and all of his beer are missing, and the local news channel is reporting yet another murder.

What is Phil to do?

#14 – Kung-Fu Granny

While walking through the park one day, a mugger attacks you and your beloved granny.

You throw your hands into the air and tell the muggers to take whatever they want.

Granny, on the other hand, throws down her walker and gives the punk a taste of her sweet ass martial arts moves.  Kicks. Flips. The works.

How did granny acquire this skill and why did she never tell you about it?

#15 – Intergalactic Inequality

In the hopes of discovering a planet that does not suffer from racism, a diverse group of human explorers take to the stars in search of a more open minded planet.

They find Quimbo, a lovely, resource rich planet.  The Quimboners (look, that’s their name because words mean different things on different planets so get your mind out of the gutter) invite the space explorers to stay.

The Quimboners are humanoids.  They are tall, have tough, scaly skin and walk on two feet.

More interestingly, they come in every color of the rainbow.  Purple, red, blue, white, black, green, gold, orange and so on.

“I can’t believe on your home planet humans are mean to one another based on skin color,” King Quimbos, Supreme Ruler of All Quimboners and He’ll Thank You for Not Poking Fun at His Name or Title.

“Yes,” Major Krumpert, leader of the space explorers, replies. “We are so glad to have found a planet where racial discrimination does not exist.”

“It certainly does not exist here,” King Quimbos says. “Since the dawn of time, the Kuimboners have all gotten along, regardless of color. Why, the idea to not like our fellow Quimboners based on skin color never popped into our minds.”

“Glad to hear it,” Major Krumpert says.

The King and his royal guard take the space explorers on a tour of capital city.  While out and about, the space explorers notice a series of signs:

  • Butts not allowed.
  • Butt free establishment.
  • If you have a butt you’re not welcome here.
  • Hey hey, ho ho, Kuimboners with butts have got to go.

“What gives?” Major Krumpet asks as he points to one of the signs.

“Oh,” King Quimbos says as he rolls all three of his eyes. “Our species evolved thousands of years ago to the point where we no longer need butts.  Our bodies take only the energy that is needed out of food and then the rest spontaneously combusts without adding fat or excrement.”

“Amazing,” Major Krumpet said.

“Yes,” King Quimbos replies. “But alas, not every Quimboner was lucky enough to evolve. Quimboners with butts are dirty vermin, always ruining everything with their wretched butts. Those, they are second-class citizens, not welcome in any respectable establishment and forced into lives of involuntary servitude.”

Major Krumpet and his team all break out into a cold sweat.

“Why?” King Quimbos asks. “You all don’t have butts, do you?”

How does Major Krumpert extricate himself from this sticky situation?

And will the Quimboners with butts ever know justice and equality?

#16 – Hubert the Talking Dolphin

Billy swims too far out to sea but luckily is saved from certain death by drowning by a plucky talking dolphin named Hubert.

How did Hubert learn to talk?

What adventures will Billy and Hubert get into next?

#17 – Bubble Bubble Toil and…Aww, You Know the Rest

A coven of hag witches wants to cook up a spell that will make them beautiful and desired by all men.

What ingredients will they toss into their cauldron to make it so?

#18 – Upside Down

The year is 2150.  The world has been conquered by a crazed cult known as “The Foot Hand Front.”

That’s right. They believe that man was meant to walk on his hands and manipulate objects with his feet.

They pass laws to that effect. No one is allowed to walk on their feet anymore.  All personal movement must be done by using hands as feet.

Will the citizens of the world stand (on their feet or their hands or with any body part) for this?

If so, why?

If not, expound upon the ensuing revolution. Who will be the heroes of the “Walk on Your Feet” movement and what will their victories be?

#19 – Super You

Congratulations. You are now a super hero.

What will your super power be?

What will your costume look like?

Who will be your side-kick?

Will you have a fancy car, plane, motorcycle or other awesome conveyances?

What about high-tech gadgets?

Whether real or make believe, what will the city you protect be like?

And finally, who will be your super villain? (Muah ha ha ha!)

#20 – Love at First Sight

Do you believe in love at first sight?  If so, write a scene where two strangers meet for the first time. What is the setting and what is it that causes them to fall in love?

If you don’t, what about a short story in which two people meet and over time, they grow to love and need each other? What series of circumstances would cause their love to grow over time?

And how much time would it take?

 

 

 

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Star Wars – Rogue One Trailer #2

Hey 3.5 readers.

New trailer out for Star Wars: Rogue One.

We learn a bit more, namely, that the heroine’s father is somehow the inventor or some kind of major player in developing the Death Star.

We see a little more of Darth Vader and all in all it is some kind of Star Wars espionage spy thriller movie.

It does look like more effort was put into the plot than past films.

What say you, 3.5 readers?

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#31ZombieAuthors Rewind – Perrin Briar – Three Zombie Series and Counting

With Your Host: Schecky Blargfeld, Zombie Comedian

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It’s too bad the Americans and the Brits split up.

Sure we’ve got our differences.

They love tea. We love soda.  They love crumpets. We love donuts.

But we both love zombies…or at least love to read about them.

Last year, BQB dialed up across the pond and talked to Perrin about his love of everything zombified.

Check out that interview here.

And don’t forget to check out Perrin’s latest:

Skip: An Epic Science Fiction Fantasy Adventure Series (now available on Amazon.)

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TV Review – Battlestar Galactica (2004-2009)

“All of this has happened before and will happen again.”

Umm…except no matter what, my site will only have 3.5 readers before and again.

Seriously, it’s like shouting into the deepest reaches of space here!

I just hope if a Cylon gets me its the Tricia Helfer model.  Awooga!

BQB here with a review of Battlestar Galactica.

Just so that we’re all on the same page here, I’m talking about BSG that aired on the SyFy channel in the 2000s, not the 1970s original where the actors wore capes and the cylons looked like tin cans and shit.

This show was a real coup for sci-fi nerds.  After all, it isn’t like anyone was really clamoring for a remake of the cheesy 70s version, but series rebooter Ronald Moore delivered and delivered big time.

Twelve colonies, all named after the astrological signs, are filled with humans who work together under one government.

Alas, the cylons (robots run amuck) blow shit up big time.

In a surprise turn of events, Laura Roslin (Mary McDonnell) becomes the president as every other head of state above her dies.

Thereafter, Admiral William Adama (Edward James Olmos), at the command of Battlestar Galactica, leads a convoy of ships filled with humans on an epic search for the mythical lost planet known as “Earth.”

You might have heard of it. You’re sitting on it, dummy.

Along the way, there’s political intrigue, backstabbing, sex, violence, and the constant fear that someone in the ranks might in secret, be a damn traitorous cylon as, what a twist, Cylons are able to take human form now.

Did I mention that the Cylons chase the humans all over space? Cy-douches if you ask me.

Over the years, SyFy has given us such wondrous films as Sharknado and Sharktopus vs. Whalewolf.

In other words, you sort of get the impression that they phone most of their shit in, but somehow, everyone involved with this show was firing on all cylinders. Why they haven’t been able to recreate this success before or after is beyond me.

Add to the mix the exploits of space fighter pilots Lee “Apollo” Adama aka the admiral’s son (Jamie Bamber) and super hot nerd fantasy girl Katee Sackhoff as Kara “Starbuck” Thrace and you’ve got a great show.

Honestly, the show could have introduce Katee Sackhoff to the world and stopped there. She’s built a career on starring in sci-fi nerd movies/shows ever since and I hope she never stops.

Oh, and there’s James Callis as the duplicitous scheming super weenie Dr. Gaius Baltar who, we learn early on, basically helped the Cylons destroy humanity through his douchebaggery and then somehow he must hide this info from his human compatriots throughout the series or be thrown out the airlock.

Yup.  Somebody was always getting thrown out that airlock, often at the behest of grumpy Cylon hater Colonel Saul Tigh (Michael Hogan.)

I hate to say it, 3.5 readers, but this isn’t available on Netflix at present.

However, you can check it out on Hulu and if you’re a sci-fi space geek, it is worth the subscription fee, even if you just decide to subscribe until you’ve binge watched the whole thing.

And it is binge worthy. There are many cliff hangers and ongoing arcs, plot points you can’t help but want to see resolved.

And Moore and co. are creative in taking pieces of our earthly world and implanting them in the BSG world with the suggestion that the culture we experience now has its roots in this ancient space faring group of explorers.

STATUS: Shelf-worthy.

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Movie Review – Star Trek: Beyond (2016)

Space.  The final frontier.  Damn, it’s big and shit.

These are the voyages of the Starship SPOILERPRISE.

BQB here with a review of Star Trek: Beyond.

J.J. Abrams’ third Star Trek movie is out.  This go around, Kirk and Co. get lured into a distant nebula, ambushed and stranded after crashing on a desolate planet run by the evil alien Krall.

The crew has an artifact Krall wants in order to do evil shit…and they fight and shit and that’s about it. I’ll let you watch and fill in the details on your own.

I applaud J.J. because he seems committed to honoring the spirit of the old show/movies even though the 35+ crowd that Hollywood typically doesn’t give a crap about is the only demographic that would care.

Sulu’s totally gay and homage is paid to the late Leonard Nimoy, as well as to the original cast.

Sorry to give this spoiler but at one point a photo of the original cast is shown from the 1980s/1990s movies when they’re all in their 50’s and are wrinkly and gray haired and shit.

Millenials, old people used to look like that and they let them into movies anyway.  Now they just botox the shit out of themselves until their 95.

Idris Elba is great as Krall.  Chris Pine, Zachary Quinto, Karl Urban and everyone turn in great performances.

There are times when it almost feels like they’re parodying the original show.  Karl Urban’s impression of Dr. “Bones” McCoy is just too good.

There are attempts to appeal to us ancient folk – we’ll be ancient dust particles by the time Kirk comes around.  Alien Jaylah (Sofia Boutella) for example, enjoys rap music.  As she explains, she “likes the beats and the yelling.”  The other characters note that it is considered classical music.

I wonder which of our hits will be considered classics in Kirk’s time?

Kirk also rides a vintage motorcycle against the aliens – a move that might have been campy but since it was done right, it worked.

I enjoyed it.  Honestly, I think the second one in this series (the one with Benedict Cumberbatch as Khan) was the best of the three.

This one has it high points but there’s something about it – maybe by now we’ve all come to know these new versions of the original characters.  Maybe the plot wasn’t as involved as the other films – I don’t know.

I’m not saying it was bad. I just think the second was the best and this one didn’t top it. But it is still worth your time.

Very sad about Anton Yelchin’s tragic accident.  Yelchin played Chekov in all three of the new movies including this one.

Nothing reminds me of the fragile nature of life than when a celebrity dies before his/her movie comes out and there I am, sitting in the audience, watching that person larger than life on the big screen yet in my mind I’m thinking “Oh, sigh, that person sadly isn’t with us anymore.”

Finally, just an observation.  All the evil aliens are ugly.  All the nice aliens are – well I’m not sure if “hot” is the right word lest I get accused of having a thing for aliens but all the nice aliens are pleasant looking.

Krall for example has a permanent angry glare and his henchman aliens all have sharp teeth whereas heroine Jaylah is basically just a hot chick who had some designs drawn on her face with magic marker.

Therefore, the plight of stereotypical ugly typecasting exists even in space.  In the next film, I demand that the crew have an officer who is a hideous alien with sharp teeth. #OscarsSoPretty

STATUS: Shelf-worthy.

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Daily Discussion With BQB – Star Trek

Happy Friday 3.5 Readers.

The new Star Trek movie is out today, so I’ll ask, what is your favorite Star Trek episode or movie?  The original, the Next Generation, all the other shows, movies, etc.

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Movie Review – Ghostbusters (2016)

Ghostbusters with vaginas. What will they think of next?

Who you gonna call?

SPOILER BUSTERS.

Because…spoilers.

BQB here with a review of the revamped Ghostbusters.

I can’t think of another movie that inspired so much hype, controversy, nerd rage and socio-politcal debate.

So rather than an all out review, I’ll anticipate and answer the questions of my 3.5 readers.

WAS IT GOOD?

Yes.  It was your pretty standard summer movie.

WAS IT BETTER THAN THE ORIGINAL?

No, because that was too perfect.  “Alexander wept because he had no more worlds to conquer.”

As a movie-goer, I weep because there’s very little Hollywood can do to wow me. All the special effects tricks have been discovered, CGI has been around forever, every line has been crossed, every boundary has been pushed.

The original film mixed special effects, action and comedy into something no one had ever seen before. I was wowed when I saw it as a little kid. Thirty some odd years later, I’ve seen it all now when it comes to movies.  I suppose there won’t be a new boundary to push until they create some kind of immersive virtual reality movie or something.

Millennials, you’ll never experience the awe I did as a boy sitting in a theater with a crowd of people who had never seen life like ghosts on screen for the first time.  But don’t feel too bad because all that really means in the grand scheme of things is I’ve got less time before I become a ghost than you do.

DID HAVING AN ALL FEMALE CAST RUIN THE MOVIE?

No. Anyone who takes up the Ghostbusters gauntlet has taken on a massive challenge.  “Oh yes. Let me remake the movie that every adult remembers fondly from their childhood.”

No. No pressure at all.

But they did about as good as anyone could under that pressure.

They were funny. They played their characters well.  In my opinion, Kate McKinnon as wacky inventor Holtzmann and Leslie Jones as “keeping it real” Patty stole the show.

I’M A WOMAN AND I FEEL THAT I AM DISCRIMINATED AGAINST DUE TO MY OWNERSHIP OF A VAGINA. WILL THIS FILM STOP THAT?

Probably not.  McKinnon and Jones, as well as Melissa McCarthy and Kristen Wiig were all believable as three scientists and a New York history buff turned paranormal investigators and eliminators.

They didn’t really do anything to overtly point out that “hey we’re lady Ghostbusters.” Instead, they went through the same difficulties the original Ghostbusters went through i.e. trying to figure out the science of ghost busting without blowing themselves up while the fate of the world is on the line.

That’s a lot of pressure for anyone, whether they have a penis or a vagina.

There was a running gag where they post their ghost footage to YouTube and have to deal with crackpot social media comments, an obvious dig at the online backlash the film went through.

WAS IT RACIST TO HAVE MADE LESLIE JONES’ CHARACTER THE ONLY NON-SCIENTIST?

Hmm.  Well, I doubt that was the intent. Her character is a subway worker who in her spare time studies New York City history, thus her knowledge of what lies underneath the city and its history becomes essential to the team.

In other words, she wasn’t a scientist but she wasn’t dumb either.

WAS IT FUNNY?

There were times that I laughed. There were jokes that fell flat. Funniest moments came from Holtzmann, Patty, and the gang’s super dumb man-secretary, Kevin (Chris Hemsworth.)

For me personally, there were not any of the gut-busting, uncontrollable “I can’t stop laughing” laughs which is what you’d like to see in a Ghostbusters movie.

WAS IT JUST A REHASH OF THE ORIGINAL?

Yes and no.  There were many repeats and homages to the fans’ favorite jokes and/or scenes.  I’ll let you watch and pick them out on your own.

Plot wise, there is a lot of similarity.  Scientists create inventions to catch ghosts. Because they are breaking new ground, they make mistakes along the way. The public can’t comprehend the existence of ghosts so they think the Ghostbusters are charlatans. They butt heads with the Mayor and the government. Oh, and Slimer.

The ghosts look great with modern CGI/special effects but again, something about seeing all that in 1984 when it was new made it more awesome.

But – there was a lot of effort to redevelop the plot.  Without getting too spoilery, the villain, Rowan, is a big nerd who wants to get back at the world for all the bullying he went through by unleashing ghosts upon the world.

Most of the original cast members have fun cameos.  Bill Murray, Dan Akroyd, Ernie Hudson, Sigourney Weaver and Annie Potts stop by, not as their original characters but as random folks the new Ghostbusters meet along the way.

Sadly, Rick Moranis didn’t stop by though that would have been cool.  Even sadder, Harold Ramis is no longer able to stop by but there was a touching nod to him.

AM I A HORRIBLE ANTI-FEMALE PIECE OF SHIT IF I DIDN’T LIKE THE MOVIE?

I don’t think so.  You may have not liked it for any number of non-female hating reasons. Maybe you think Hollywood is filled with hacks who can’t come up with original ideas anymore. Maybe you loved the original so much you think it was blasphemous to create a new one (newsflash – the original one is still available and you can watch it anytime!)

You might even argue that as fans, we have long waited for the Ghostbusters to do something new. Yes, this is new but I mean new as in, don’t save New York again but perhaps delve into the myriad of possible threats that a team of ghost investigators might face.

In fact, given that three out of the four original Ghostbusters are alive and in relatively good condition given their age, one wonders if, in the right hands, a movie where we see what the old Ghostbusters have been up to for the past thirty years before they pass the baton to a new team might have been possible. Then again, I have to remind myself that would have only been interesting to anyone under 35 years old.  Sorry over 35 crowd, but Hollywood just considers you a waste of space.

I liked it.  I didn’t LOVE it. It isn’t something I’ll want to rewatch over and over.  But as summer movies go, it did satisfy the prerequisites – i.e. I got to escape my problems for two hours and I had a good time.

BUT IF I DIDN’T LIKE THE MOVIE, IS IT DUMB TO SAY THINGS LIKE “OH MY GOD THIS RUINED MY LIFE” OR WHATEVER?

Yes. It’s just a movie.

WAS THERE SOMETHING AS AN ASPIRING SELF-PUBLISHER THAT YOU’D LIKE TO POINT OUT?

Yes. Abby (McCarthy) and Erin (Wiig) begin the film as estranged friends who once co-wrote a book about the existence of ghosts.

Years later after going their separate ways (Abby wanted to keep chasing ghosts while Erin wanted to pursue a career as a serious professor), Erin’s efforts to secure a tenured physics professor position become threatened when Abby puts their ghost book up for sale on Amazon, so she seeks out Abby to demand that she take the book down.

Self-publishing made it into a Ghostbusters movie!

WHAT STATUS DO YOU GIVE IT?

STATUS: Shelf-worthy.  And due to the CGI ghosts, worth seeing on the big screen.

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Movie Review: Independence Day: Resurgence

From the far reaches of space, aliens travel to Earth…

to remind me that I am now old as f%&kT and have accomplished very little in 20 years.

Although in my defense, neither has the world! So there’s that.

SPOILERS abound.

BQB here with a review of Independence Day: Resurgence.

The year was 1996.

Bill Clinton was in the White House, chasing interns around the Oval Office with his pants around his ankles and turning Monica Lewinsky into a human humidor (Google it, millennials. It’s too disgusting to go into further detail.)

The Beastie Boys were laying down some of their ill-est shit.

The sentence “Bill Cosby gave that lady his pudding pop” could only have been construed as “that nice comedic father figure was kind enough to give a woman the delicious frozen snack treat that he endorses.”

The Internet was in its infancy.  It was a cute toy but other than that no one saw a glaring need to pay a fee to tie up your phone line while your computer screeched at you.

People who took pictures of their lunch and then demanded that you a) look at the pictures of their lunch and b) make comments about their lunch were considered assholes.

Technically, those people didn’t even exist, or if they did, not in high numbers. Again, the Internet was in its infancy.  If you wanted your own website you needed coding knowledge and technical know-how.  It was just too much work to post pictures of your lunch.

And at the box office was a movie called Independence Day.

Yes, in a pure marketing move, it was released on July 4th. Independence Day.

Those aliens know how to screw up a barbecue.

In the original, aliens invade Earth.  In a far flung story line, various groups and people react to the alien attack.

To the best of my recollection, you had Bill Pullman as the president, who was also a fighter pilot, for no other reason really than he got to make inspiring speeches and then fly around in a fighter jet and shoot at alien spaceships.

Oh and there was Randy Quaid as a guy who appeared to be a drunk jackass who was crazy for believing he’d been abducted by aliens as a kid only to be vindicated.  Humorous. Also, he was, coincidentally, a pilot as well so he too enjoyed the alien shooting fun.

Of course, the big star was Will Smith as Capt. Hiller, the pilot/hero who saves the day.

(SPOILER ALERT – he and Jeff Goldblum fly a stolen alien fighter craft into the mothership, fooling the aliens just long enough for them to upload a virus with the help of a 90’s era Mac and a floppy disk.)

Seemed ingenious at the time.

Twenty years have now passed.

Holy f%&king butt nuggets.  Twenty years.

3.5 readers, here’s my first criticism of this highly unnecessary sequel.

It made me think too much about my life – how quickly the past two decades went by. Mistakes made. Things I could have done differently.

How is it possible that I went from a wide-eyed young lad thinking this new fangled CGI movie was pretty cool (CGI effects were fairly new to the movie scene in those days so as a movie goer, they were a treat. I feel bad for you millennials as you have nothing to look forward to now, unless virtual reality actually ends up being as big as they claim it will be).

Where was I? Ah yes. How did I go from that young kid wowed by CGI to a jaded adult who has now seen so much CGI that it just doesn’t have them same wow factor that it did when it was new?

Shit. Then there’s me in general. Twenty years ago I thought by now I’d be a really amazing, fabulous person.

Had you told me back then that in 20 years my greatest achievement would be starting a blog with 3.5 readers my response would be a) “What’s a blog?” and then b) “Oh, it’s a website that any asshole with $10 and rudimentary typing skills can start? Excuse me while I GO STICK MY HEAD IN THE MOVIE THEATER RESTROOM TOILET AND FLUSH IT UNTIL I DROWN TO SPARE MYSELF THIS INCREDIBLY DISAPPOINTING FUTURE!!!”

Nah. I wouldn’t have done that. I’d have just vowed that I’d work harder and make a difference. You millennials weren’t the first generation to view yourselves as special snowflakes.

At any rate, I spent most of this movie paying little attention to the action on screen. Instead, I went over the multitude of mistakes I made, opportunities missed, warning signs avoided, paths not taken and so on that led me to a point where the highlight of my day is writing a review of a highly unnecessary sequel to a movie that was dumb twenty years ago.

Even worse, so little has changed in the world since then when you think about it:

  • A Bush had recently been president before Clinton became president.
  • Since then, another Bush became president. Then a third Bush recently tried to become president. Also, another Clinton wants to be president. At least if the Clintons end up back in the White House, the interns will have a head start this time. Bill isn’t looking as spry as he used to be.
  • Trump’s hair defied gravity and laws of physics, back in the 1990s and today.
  • Cars don’t fly yet. We have yet to meet real space aliens. Oh, and the Simpsons are still on the air.

And yet, despite all of these similarities, there were some differences between then and now that made the original film more enjoyable…then.

Specifically:

  • I was young and more willing to suspend disbelief. (Bill Pullman as a President/Alien Fighter seemed perfectly plausible.)
  • Seeing landmarks getting blown up by aliens seemed like harmless fantasy drivel back in the day.  As I recall, the aliens in the original film blow up the White House so as to illustrate to you, the viewer that they were evil ass aliens who meant business and were not to be f%&ked with.  Since 9/11, such scenes just seems to hit too close to home.
  • And like I said before, CGI was in its early stages, so it was awesome to see. Then George Lucas came along and made those cartoonish Star Wars prequels.

OK. Shit. 1,000 words in, let’s talk about the sequel itself.

It’s twenty years later and the world has become a Utopia. A casino magnate with gravity defying hair and the lady who ran the country in the 90’s by shoving her hand up her husband’s ass and working his mouth like a puppet (oh come on, you know she did) aren’t vying for control of the Free World.

Rather, the entire world is free and humanity works together as humans have set aside their differences in order to keep a watchful eye out for future alien invasions.

Alien tech has been used to create all sorts of wonderful inventions that improve life and make people happy.

And then, you know, aliens invade again. Bullshit, bullshit, bullshit, some people do some shit over here, some other people do some shit over there, cut in some scenes of shit getting blown up around the world, and so on.

There are new cast members like Liam Hemsworth, but mostly the film consists of the actors from the original who never did anything better than this bullshit.

Thus, Jeff Goldblum is back, as is Judd Hirsch as his father.  Bill Pullman is back though I wish he wasn’t because I feel like it was just yesterday that I saw him in Spaceballs as Lone Star and now he’s old as f%&k.

And in general, that’s my main complaint.  Will Smith didn’t return, I assume, because the studio didn’t want to shell out the cash now that he’s a big box office draw (you might remember the original Independence Day plus Men in Black made Will a celebrity icon.)

So Will is nowhere to be found.  But everyone without anything better to do is back, and they are all old as shit, which makes me feel old as shit.

I literally think this movie was made for the sole purpose of making me feel old as shit.

HOLLYWOOD SUIT 1 – Should we make a sequel to Independence Day?

HOLLYWOOD SUIT 2 – Yes! It will make BQB feel old as shit!

There are many references to the original, shit that you probably wouldn’t get unless you saw the first one (and also if you’re a nerd like me who has seen it a few more times over the years so you remember what happened.)

The aliens are still slapping Bill Pullman’s face up against the glass and speaking through him as if he’s their puppet (I assume they got the idea by watching Hillary work Bill).

Jeff and Judd are still the unlikely father/son hero duo, except Judd’s still alive which is surprising as I thought he was old as shit twenty years ago.

Eat your Wheaties kids and you too can aspire to Judd Hirsch’s longevity!

Robert Loggia has a quick cameo though I think it might have been a CGI Loggia.  Someone tell me if you have the details on that one.

Oh and Brent Spiner (aka Data from Star Trek: The Next Generation) is back as the eccentric Dr. Brakish Okun.

The plot is basically the same bullshit about aliens invading and their invasion happens to be coincidentally timed on Independence Day so Americans can feel very patriotic while watching a movie about Americans defeating aliens on the same day that the British were told to go pound sand.

Although, I have to point out, some Hollywood suit must have decided this sequel didn’t have the gusto to put butts in seats on the Fourth of July, seeing as how it was released in June.

You’ll know this franchise has hit the wall when they release an Independence Day sequel that hits theaters in January.

Oh and FYI – there will be another sequel.  It will also be unnecessary and serve as little more than a reminder that 20 years have passed, your life sucks more than you thought it would and the world doesn’t even have flying cars.

Shit. Stop remaking 90s shit, Hollywood.

Next you’ll tell me there’s a Mallrats TV show in the works.

Wait? What?

STATUS: Semi-shelf worthy. The effects are worth a trip to the theater. Otherwise, if you miss it, you didn’t miss much.

 

 

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