Who Framed Roger Rabbit Review

It’s time to look at a very classic mix of live action and cartoons. This is one of those films that I have certainly known about for a very long time, but never actually got to watch until now. It’s certainly a lot of fun and I can see why it became such a hit. Despite that, it does have its share of issues in regards to the pacing, Jessica Rabbit, and the main character. Well, lets dive into this!

The film follows a private eye known as Eddie. He doesn’t like the Toons that are always running around because they murdered his brother. Still, he can’t quite escape them since he lives in a world where they have found out how to make all of the classic Disney and Warner Bros characters real. These characters are also completely immortal except when it comes to a specific kind of acid which inflicts permadeath on them. Well, Eddie has been hired to find some blackmail that they can use to get Roger to work a little more seriously. The plan is actually rather suspect from the start since making him depressed could make his work get worse. Unfortunately, instead the blackmail of his wife Jessica cheating on him by playing patticake with some guy ends up making Roger crazier than expected. He seemingly murders the guy and then runs off. Eddie doesn’t care what happens to Roger, but unfortunately Roger lets everyone know that he and Eddie are a team by going to his apartment and now Eddie will have to solve the case to save his own skin.

It’s definitely pretty surreal to see characters like Mickey Mouse and Bugs Bunny running around during the film. I like the concept of having a whole town of cartoons just causing mayhem and that the ones on TV are actually real. Of course, it does make you wonder why the Toons don’t do anything to stop their oppressors. If we buy Roger’s reasoning then they just want to make people smile so getting violent is out of the question. Still, that just doesn’t work since we know that some work as bouncers and others do actually get aggressive. It would have been awesome if at the end the Looney Tunes had banded together for a big fight. This isn’t that kind of movie so I wasn’t expecting that, but you just have to wonder why they just sit there and take it. Who knows how many Toons had already been murdered by this point. The story is actually dark when you think about it. The scene of the toon getting murdered on screen was particularly vicious and definitely showed that Doom has no mercy.

Quickly lets talk about the main character. I’m afraid that I don’t like Eddie. He’s fun for the first bit of the film as he talks tough to all of the characters and doesn’t like the Toons. However, he loses any sense of toughness when Jessica shows up and humiliates him in front of everyone. He has no real will power and just can’t seem to stand up to her. It’s pretty disgraceful if you ask me and especially since the whole scene was part of the villain’s plot. He basically stepped right into their hands. From that point on it was over for him. his dance at the end wasn’t particularly impressive either.

Then we have Dolores. This was not a well developed romance between her and Eddie. The whole time you are just wondering why this had to happen. They seemed rather antagonistic at the beginning of the film so I don’t know what pushed them together so well by the end. I guess the tense situation just got them to realize the important things in life. She isn’t a bad character, but doesn’t really contribute anything to the story either.

Next up is Doom, the main villain of the film. He’s definitely an intense character and a very smart one as well since he came up with the super powerful goop. The guy really does a good job of bringing in the fear whenever he shows up. He even knows a lot about the Toons which makes it easy for him to hunt them effectively. We get a twist about the characters which is handled really well and he can fight with great proficiency too. Doom is really the complete package as far as villains go.

Then we’ve got Roger, basically the main Toon of the film. Unfortunately his whole gimmick is that he isn’t smart at all and just gets the heroes in trouble all the time. His only goal in life is to make people laugh and that purpose overrides everything else including his self preservation instinct. If there is a laugh to be had you will certainly find Roger Rabbit. As a result, it’s definitely hard to root for this guy or even to sympathize with him. If he is always sabotaging everyone’s attempts to help him, then maybe it’s for the best that Doom nabs him. With someone as impulsive and unreliable as Roger, perhaps it wouldn’t be too much to assume that he did commit the murder. Anything is possible with this guy. In the 1-2 scenes that Bugs Bunny appears, he has a much better character and personality than Roger. He’s still rather mean and Mickey calls him out on it, but at least Bugs is smart and will always manage to survive. In comparison, Daffy seems to lose out again as his only real scene is a big fight between him and Donald where Donald has the upper hand the whole time. I guess we finally know which duck would win in a fight.

Jessica is certainly an interesting case as the whole point of her character is to be used for fanservice. Does this mean I shouldn’t really count it as fanservice?…Nah. It’s still fanservice for sure and her opening scene is quite brutal. Her character design is purposefully parodyish so you’re supposed to wonder why every character is so impressed as she isn’t all that impressive, but the bouncing effects of her character reach Dead or Alive levels. She gets a lot of red herring moments and does seem to be legitimately tough at times, but it’s certainly hard to root for her as well. The film could have definitely toned her down a bit as well to make her character be taken a little more seriously. We should have just had the rabbit from Space Jam, now there was a quality character.

So, the pacing does slow down somewhat for the second half. The first half of the film where Eddie doesn’t get along with the Tunes is certainly the best part. That’s usually the case for mean main characters like this who get nice by the end. They just aren’t as interesting as when they started out. The end gave us some nice action scenes though and the car chases were pretty fun. The movie surprisingly had a lot of restraint for not relying on the guest stars too much. It would have been really cool if they could have showed up more, but they probably would have ended up stealing the whole movie so it may have been a good idea to keep them out.

The writing is pretty solid I’d say. We get some nice burns from most of the characters and nice references as well. As far as the animation goes, I’d say that it looks good as well. It’s certainly interesting to see how they draw some of the characters as Daffy looks way different than he does in the classic shorts. The animation blends together rather well and the only time it looks even mildly choppy was when Eddie was thrown by one of the bigger toons during the movie. It must have been a lot of work so they definitely put in the effort.

I’d definitely like another take on this concept since there’s so much that can be done with it. We could easily get some kind of sequel or spinoff that could continue things. I want to see a full scale revolution from the Toons. They are clearly still underpaid and used by the humans so they need to demand justice. As the film shows that they are quite powerful, it would be difficult to stop them. We need a cool sequiel like that and of course there is a wider range of characters that could be thrown in now. The sky’s the limit.

Overall, Who Framed Roger Rabbit is a solid film. It’s definitely fun and shows other films how to mix animated and live action styles the right way. The fanservice in the film is probably about as lenient as it gets thanks to the animation and while the pacing does get slow at times, it doesn’t last for too long. The positives of the film do end up outweighing the negatives. That being said, this film certainly isn’t in the same league as Space Jam so lets not forget the true legend of this genre. I doubt that film will ever be surpassed by another Looney Tunes/animation blend sort of film. It was just perfect and I wouldn’t have minded if Doom had challenged them to a quick game at the end. I would have been up for that is all I’m saying.

Overall 6/10

Samurai Jack (2017) Review

Samurai Jack is one of the best American cartoons out there. If we don’t count super hero shows like Justice League then it takes the title quite easily. The show had awesome fights and episodes that were nonstop action the entire time. It may have ended rather suddenly with no real ending, but that’s fine since you could always imagine your own ending. Still, everyone was rather hyped when they announced that the series would finally be getting a conclusion. Everyone…except me. From the start this was promoted as a far darker, grittier, more violent take on the classic show to fit in with the modern times. I had a bad feeling that this show was not just going to be bad, but terrible. Unfortunately…my fears turned out to be correct.

This new season was fairly misleading as the first episode was actually really good. We got a nice fight scene and it was against a robot so there wasn’t any blood or anything. I felt like things would maybe be okay. Right after that is where the show went downhill and never recovered. Episodes 2-3 are the most action packed and intense episodes of the show, but are also overflowing with over the top violence. Jack also ends up murdering a few of his opponents who were brainwashed girls who were raised to despise him. The fact that they are rather young is there to increase the grit factor.

Episode 4 was more like a classic Jack episode. It still couldn’t be bothered to avoid some animal violence, but was a big step up from the last two episodes. Episode 5 was the final episode before the show lost its focus. We see the Scotsman have a very pointless return as he gets one shotted by Aku and Jack is tricked into thinking that he murdered a bunch of kids. Honestly, I thought they were dead too so props to the show for not going down that rabbit hole.

Episode 6 is about cameos as Ashi meets up with a bunch of old allies. You can say that it’s filler as it’s just a homage for old fans, but the good news is that this means we didn’t have to see any unnecessary grit. I think this may be the episode with a pretty wince worthy line, but more on that later. Episode 7 leads us back to grit as it’s one of the most violent episodes. Ashi murders a bunch of villains and you’ll just want to fast forward to the next one.

Episode 8 is one of the worst episodes. This time it’s because of the very forced romance and the fact that it doesn’t work at all. Jack’s wayyyyyyy older than Ashi and as people had been pointing out on the sub reddit for weeks, it couldn’t work. The show surely wouldn’t go down that path right? Well, they did even though everyone was hoping for a more father-daughter bond which would have made more sense. Episode 9 still has some of this plot to deal with, but luckily the second half is better as Aku steps in. Episode 10 is extremely rushed with a rather lackluster ending and one of the more anticlimactic final fights. The season ended as it ran….a disappointing and unnecessary final season.

Lets look at the negatives more generally now. First off is obviously the violence. Samurai Jack was originally a kid’s show, but this season decided to get extremely violent and dark. You could barely go a single episode without some kind of animal violence. Whether it be a bird getting stabbed, a dog being slashed to the verge of death, or random bugs squashed there was something always happening here. Animal violence is always a big no-no and having it show up over and over again certainly doesn’t help the show’s case. Naturally, the human fight scenes were just as bad. It gets to the point where you actively hope for an episode with no action and that’s where the show goes to the other extreme of having an episode that’s all about walking and talking. The only good fights are the one against Aku and robots, but those are typically quite brief.

To make the show a little more dark as well, Jack destroys the brainwashed daughters of Aku as I mentioned earlier. They were only added to the show so that Jack could justify his choice to destroy them and so he could stop being such a dramatic hero who saved everyone in his path. This was their only purpose which meant that the writers didn’t even care about their power levels. They started out as being incredibly strong and much quicker than Jack, but ultimately turned into light weights that Jack could defeat with ease.

The show’s writing also drops down quite a few levels. Just to keep up the edge factor the show has Scaramouche use a p word to describe someone’s head and it felt so out of place and unnecessary. It was about as forced as Wolverine’s catchphrase in virtually every X-Men film. The whole romance angle was also written quite poorly. Jack’s sudden lack of confidence and debates with his inner self were just as hard to watch. Aku was really the only character who stayed in character during this season. He was great and definitely a highlight here. Without him, I wonder how the show would have fared.

To expand on why Jack isn’t a good character here, he has to compromise on his ideals far too often and doesn’t seem to have a shred of will power left. He decides to commit suicide after not being able to save a bunch of kids, but all that will do is doom even more people. He decides not to help a village that is being destroyed because he’s tired of being a hero. By the time he changes his mind and goes there, everyone is already dead. Jack even got a bunch of clever nicknames on Youtube as a result since he certainly seems to have gotten more ruthless over the years. His new (pretty bad) design didn’t help matters either. They really dropped the ball on this.

While Jack may have been butchered as a character, he still got some pretty good lines during the season. “It always seems bad at first, but then I find a way” or “I will give you a new choice. Turn back now or stay and face your destiny.” Those may not be word for word, but they were pretty intense. The latter especially as it comes from the preview for one of the first episodes. It was the most exciting preview and easily one of the best Toonami previews of all time. The music for that one was also pretty awesome and it will make you wish for some good tunes in the actual show.

Ashi is the main heroine and she’s a pretty decent character. She gets the short end of the stick on this show, but it was nice to finally have another supporting character who could fight. It’s a shame that we then had to throw romance into the picture and that we couldn’t see Ashi’s true form appear more. She was a good character and probably the best member in the series. She’s as brutal as Jack thanks to her origin and also mows everyone down during the course of the series. She got significantly weaker after turning good, but that’s to be expected. I like the concept of her character more than the execution, but she definitely wasn’t bad.

Scaramouche was great in the first episode. He made for a really good villain and his tuning fork is a potent weapon. That being said, his character was wasted in the rest of his appearances. The show just didn’t know what to do with him. His voice really helped to sell the character if you ask me. I already talked about how great Aku was so I don’t really need to go into it. He was just on point and while the show made him a little too powerful, (Jack can only win with plot hax) it made for an interesting dynamic. Aku is evil, but he doesn’t seem like a mean guy compared to the other villains. It’s something that I wouldn’t mind more titles playing around with. To an extent, Fairy Tail did this with Zeref for a while, but then he suddenly became full psychotic while trying to convince people that he was a nice guy.

The animation is basically the same as the old Jack show. It’s a little more streamlined and modern as the colors are sharper and the contrast works well. That being said, it’s still not my kind of animation and I wish they’d switch it to something more modern. The show looks very dated and I’ve seen 90’s shows that look a lot sharper. Just check out DBZ or Pokemon. The fight scenes are also a big step down from the old series. That one could have fights that lasted the entire episode and they happened multiple times. All of the fights in the 2nd half of the series are short and the first half felt long and intricate but also super violent and bloody.

There isn’t really much of a soundtrack here. The classic Jack end theme is still around for most of the episodes which was pretty cool. I’m not really a fan of the theme song either. I typically don’t care for narration in my openings as it should just be illustrated through the lyrics and animation. If the show can’t do that, then it just needs to try again until it can pull this off.

The show is only 10 episodes so you’ll be able to get through it in a breeze. I can’t say that there is any real replay value to be found here at all. It may help convince you to re watch the old series again though so that would definitely be a good side effect of watching this one. At the very least, Samurai Jack serves as a cautionary tale to other old cartoons that fans want to get a new season. Odds are that the new season won’t be able to live up to the original episodes and it’ll just throw mud onto your cherished memories.

Before ending this review I should at least come up with one positive fro the show. It’s not a 0 so it’s not as if the show had 0 potential. What it did do well was establish a pretty apocalyptic atmosphere. It’s clear that Aku has won the war when the season picks up. Everything that I say here refers to the first 3 episodes by the way. The rest of the season became a complete trainwreck. The episode with Ashi and Jack teaming up in the factory was the final episode to try and salvage itself. Still, the first 3 episodes were pretty hype. There was a nice level of intensity and flare to each episode and the fights had real stakes. While the daughters of Aku were nerfed, they still felt like a nice threat. Seeing Jack use a variety of weapons instead of his sword was also interesting since he is a master in virtually every form of combat. If the episodes had been handled in the same vein as the original show, I think that these three episodes could have easily reached a solid 9. It wasn’t to be, but at least Jack never got boring during this trilogy. It really should have come out as some kind of 70 minute movie.

To address the ending, I can safely say that it wasn’t satisfying. As mentioned earlier, I wanted a big final fight. Even if we ignore the fact that we got cheated out of that, it’s just pretty mean spirited to Jack. The show basically just got him a companion just so they could take her away at the end so he could die alone. Jack also got over it a little too quickly in that last butterfly scene. I would have much preferred it if Jack had simply gone to the past, defeated Jack in a very long drawn out fight, and then became King. It would have been so much more effective and concise. That or have a big team up with Aku against a new villain, but I somehow feel like fans wouldn’t like that option very much.

Overall, Samurai Jack deserved another season, but it didn’t need one. This season could have had a lot of potential since you can always make another story arc for Jack since he is immortal and the world is extremely large. Unfortunately this season couldn’t even decide what it wanted to do and half of the season felt like filler. The show could have ended on a more epic note after the first 3 episodes. It would have been a pretty conclusive ending. It even could have adapted episode 10 just without Ashi. Make no mistake, the show wouldn’t have gotten a positive score or anything since that would fix nothing, but you wouldn’t be missing out on anything by cutting the other 6 episodes out. The poorly constructed romance and pointless cameo of the Scotsman could have been left on the shelf. Next time you think about watching this show…don’t.

Overall 3/10

Scooby Doo! and WWE: Curse of the Speed Demon Review

All right, time for one of the latest Scooby Doo adventures. The first WWE adventure was actually pretty fun. I’ll take any excuse to throw in some fight scenes to the classic Scooby Doo formula you know? The problem is that this one takes the wrestling out of the WWE for the most part as it tries to be a racing film. That’s a verrrrrrry odd strategy if you ask me and it really didn’t make any sense. Sure, we still had some fights, but not as many as you would expect. The writing is a clear step under the last few films, but it’s still a reasonably enjoyable film.

Shaggy and Scooby have finally realized their dream of owning a burger joint. Now they can take customer orders and then eat the burgers instead of serving them. They’re still in business somehow, but hey…that just shows how strong the economy is at the moment right? Their favorite wrestler is the Undertaker and they’re rooting for him to win it all. Unfortunately, his partner was attacked by a mysterious foe and now they will have to take part in the race since Undertaker needs a partner. Can they win the race and stop this interloper or are they completely doomed?

I have to give myself numerous pats on the back here as I correctly guessed who was the villain within the first 10 minutes of the film. I don’t like to brag, but I just have that knack for this kind of thing. The person seemed rather suspect. Not in an obvious red herring way, but in a more legitimate fashion. Lets talk about the suspects. There is Undertaker and his sidekick. The sidekick may be doing this to make Undertaker look good and this is a nice way of taking out the competition. There’s the Russian team who may be using this as a way to undermine American confidence in racing. There’s the All American hero who loves messing with his hair and his tough female co-rider. They bicker a lot, but it could be an act. There’s the crazy twins who can teleport and throw dust at their opponents. They’re clearly not ordinary humans so they could have a stake in this. There’s the daughter of the president of the company who enters against his wishes along with her partner so they’re suspect. Finally, there’s the president who always wanders away right when the ghost shows up. Suspicious? Not at all! He makes it way too obvious to be suspicious.

There are quite a lot of suspects here and the cool thing is that most of these characters are real so that ups the stakes. Can you picture these celebrities actually doing this? Although if you’re a Pro Wrestler I suppose you’re used to acting. The actual race isn’t bad as anything goes so all of the cars work on bumping each other out of the way. There aren’t a whole lot of gimmicks to most of the cars, but Fred built Undertaker one that has rocket boosters so that helped to give him a bit of an edge. Not to mention that he could eat on the go with the original food truck. 3 day races like this are always interesting since the first 2 days barely matter since the winner of the final stretch takes it all anyway.

Before I talk about some of the negatives, lets keep on talking about the strengths to get them out of the way. One thing I really liked here was that the “civilians” actually fought back. Usually everyone just runs away from the ghost in a Scooby Doo film even if he/she isn’t all that threatening. That’s not the case here. One guy sees the ghost approaching and actually decides to hide behind a pickup truck to plan his attack and then launches at the guy. He actually puts up a really good fight even if he ended up being defeated instead. Likewise, nobody cowers at the sight of the villain aside from Shaggy and Scooby and I loved this change of pace. Imagine how awesome it would be if this became the norm.

The animation is as good as always. The Scooby Doo formula is certainly written in stone at this point and animated as such. I don’t think they need to worry about switching up the style because it just works so well. Unfortunately, there aren’t really any good music themes this time. The main theme was pretty solid I suppose, but we only got to see it very briefly. The writing is fairly bad though and that takes us into the negatives.

This first one may not really be the film in particular, but I have to address it. Shaggy and Scooby get more and more annoying with every film that passes by. I can’t really say that their antics are funny and they are easily the worst members of the Mystery Gang. I wish they wouldn’t be so scared all of the time and they’re very over the top. How can the Undertaker be their favorite wrestler if they’re completely terrified of him? The whole thing just doesn’t make any sense. Their food gimmick is good, but that’s where the buck stops at this point and the rest of their character is just sad.

Next, the characters are too gimmicky in this film. Every character is extremely exaggerated like the Russian guy or the American who was focused on his hair, but actually wasn’t very tough in the end. They’re all caricature at this point instead of real characters. Most films have quirky characters of course, but you have to do it with some tact in order to be really effective. The twins with the dust were just as bad as they were constantly waving their arms around and talking nonsense. I can’t picture their fans being very thrilled about their portrayal because it was just pretty disappointing on the whole. There were very few reasonable characters in this film.

It also reused the Daphne/Velma plot for what must be the 6th or 7th time at this point. Daphne gets a new friend so Velma gets jealous, but the new friend turns out to be shallow so they become buddies again. It’s a really old plot at this point and shows that they’re running out of ideas. At least the ghost was cool though. I mean, he barely even pretended to be a ghost this time around, but a physical opponent makes sense so the heroes have something to fight. The design was good and he was decently formidable so that was satisfying.

Overall, This film was a bit of a step down from the last few Scooby Doo films and just most of them in general. The positives are quite good at least like the fact that we got actual fight scenes. They weren’t as solid as the first WWE film, but they were still fun and that’s why I want more WWE films. We just need to focus on the wrestling and the fighting instead of trying to throw in races and all of that. Also, where was John Cena? I was really surprised that he wasn’t in the film as that seemed like a no brainer. If you’re a big Scooby Doo fan then you should check this out, but otherwise the first WWE film is just better in every way. It’s a better way to start off with the series. I expect the series to make a recovery with the next one.

Overall 6/10

Ratchet & Clank Review

It’s time to finally check out the recent Ratchet and Clank film that came out. I’ve played most of the games and it is definitely a fun franchise. Jak’s the most epic and Sly typically has the best banter, but the Ratchet series has always had the best overall package. The gameplay is always very crisp and the colorful cast of characters makes each game a lot of fun. This film didn’t do the greatest job of adapting the game and I can see why people would have a lot of issues with it, but it’s still a fun film overall. A faithful adaption of the first game would have been even better, but if you didn’t know the source material and just walked up to this one, I think you’d be reasonably satisfied with the end product.

Ratchet is a mechanic on a sandy planet who has grown bored of the routine. Being a Skywalker would be a lot more fun so Ratchet decides to head to the Galactic Ranger tryouts to see if he has what it takes. The Rangers are adding a new member for the first time in a very long while because they need to beef up their defenses to take on a new threat. Planets are being destroyed across the universe and the culprit must be brought to justice. Unfortunately, Ratchet fails the exam and heads back home. Suddenly, a robot appears with a grave warning for the princess rangers and Ratchet uses this opportunity to live out his dream. Will Ratchet and his new robotic sidekick Clank be able to stop the villains or will this team up be short lived?

You can definitely see quite a few similarities to the Star Wars beginning in the film. I didn’t really notice the similarities in the game, but granted, the film expanded on a lot of the intro. The film also added a few Easter Eggs like Sly Cooper and Daxter as Clank tried to find out what species Ratchet was a part of. The beginning of the film is probably the best part. The cool music that played when Ratchet first appeared helped to set the mood and the first fire fight between the Galactic Rangers and the enemy robots was neat. The villains were actually pretty tough and I wouldn’t have minded seeing more Star Wars esque battles like that. Don’t get me wrong, seeing the Mini Zorgs running after everyone is almost hype and all…but I prefer my full on battles.

Granted, Ratchet and Clank isn’t a super serious action movie. The games aren’t like that either, although things did get a little more serious during the time trilogy. The games have always walked a very fine line between total comedy and light hearted action adventure. I’d say that the film definitely went more towards the former and probably overdid it just a bit. Some of the comedy was a bit much and just on the generic side. Qwark is rather extreme, but that’s in character so I can roll with it and he does a better job than most of the others.

The graphics are pretty good. I’m not sure if I’m prepared to say that it looks better than some of the latest games because I was actually more impressed with those, but it certainly looks sharp. It’s pretty surreal to see the series getting a big theatrical film like this. As mentioned earlier, the soundtrack is pretty sharp. At the very least, the film didn’t hold back on the technical aspects. I think better writing would have gone a long way, but it’s not bad either. I just think that it wasn’t up to par with the main games. Perhaps the film was trying to appeal to the general audience a bit.

The characters are solid and that’s not just nostalgia talking. Ratchet’s a very relatable hero who wants to do something great with his life. He has a lot of skills, but things just don’t always work out the way he hoped they would. His careless nature is maybe a little extreme in the film, but he’s a hero at heart and always makes the right call. Clank’s a good sidekick as well. The film didn’t use his iconic laugh as much as it should have, but he still got to shine. Case in point is one of his earlier moments where Ratchet tries to say that Clank was taking him out of context so Clank had to whip out his recorder. Ratchet’s comeback would have worked on just about anyone, but Clank was prepared for it. It was a good move and it shows that you can never be too prepared. They make for a good combo and I do prefer Clank to his rivals Daxter and Bentley.

Captain Qwark is a fun character as always. Betraying everyone was a rather serious crime though and he did get a whole planet destroyed as a result. It’s a little hard to simply walk back from that although people didn’t seem to care too much and he already wrote a book about it. It may be a little hard to buy at times. One aspect that I think the show got wrong is how people started to ignore Qwark in favor of Ratchet. Part of the point to Qwark is that he’s like Hercule from DBZ. The main characters know that he is a phony, but nobody else does. The film didn’t really get that vibe across. Maybe they figured that the plot would not be able to work otherwise, but it is quite the change.

I didn’t really care for Drek as the main villain. Ratchet & Clank’s one weakness has typically been the villains. You can’t really take any of them seriously. Drek is worse than the usual villain though because at least some of the others can fight. Drek can only give out orders or jump in a mech suit if he is feeling lucky that day. I liked Victor though. His design was actually pretty good and his energy sword made for quite the weapon. He’s easily the most intimidating presence in the film even if it is never really explained how he was immune to the magnet. He’s made of the same stuff as the others right? Hmmmm. Doctor Nefarious is around, but he’s a lackey for most of the film. I’m not sure if he started out this way in the games too, but I look forward to seeing him in a leadership role instead. It’s just odd seeing him like this.

The other Galactic Rangers are fairly generic and I look forward to seeing them get written out of future films. Seriously, there’s no point to these guys and they just steal screen time from the real characters. They are really cardboard cutouts who just live up to their character tropes and no more than that. While that may sound harsh, I don’t really dislike them all that much, I just don’t think they really needed to be present. Qwark is the only superhero that you really need and the plot could have just been altered to have had Qwark bring along a sidekick instead of a 5th member. Problem solved!

For all the film’s faults, it still manages to achieve the general goal that every film has. It’s a fun film. You’ll never be bored during Ratchet & Clank and it’s a film that’s easy to watch no matter what time of the year it is. Christmas, Thanksgiving, President’s Day,….Halloween, this film will still be fun. It’s not all that long either at only around an hour and a half so it’s easy to fit into just about any slot. It may not be a masterpiece, but the film has heart and I’d be content to see the creative staff behind this one tackle some more franchises someday. It’d be great if they could play up the action angle a little more considering how high tech everything is in this universe, but I’ll take what I can get here. As long as the film never goes downhill and starts really overdoing it with the comedy, then I’m on board.

Overall, Ratchet & Clank may not have been as great as it could have been, but it’s still a good film. It’s a shame that we may not end up getting a sequel at this rate. It’s nostalgic to see the characters again since it has been a while since I played one of the games. Turning more video games into movies is definitely a good idea and I want to see Sonic and Mario get that treatment at some point. Honestly, just about any Nintendo game could make for a good movie and I’d also like some RPG movies like how Final Fantasy XV got one recently. The more the merrier I say. Whether you’ve played the games or not, I recommend checking out this film. It’s a fun little adventure film that I could recommend to anyone and there’s not even a cliffhanger so if that’s not your thing then you don’t need to worry. I do have to say that the one sad part of the ending is how Ratchet’s boss isn’t very sympathetic. It’s hard to feel bad for him when he doesn’t give Ratchet a day off for saving the universe. I think Ratchet had a point when he said that he thought the boss would be a little more touched at the gesture of Ratchet coming home instead of becoming a billionaire on another planet or something. I guess that’s the boss though, he does what he wants when he wants.

Overall 7/10

It’s the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown Review

It’s time to check out the Halloween special for Charlie Brown. Slowly, but surely I’m closing in on the rest of the Peanut specials. They certainly came out with quite a lot of them though so it’ll be a while before they are all complete. This one is pretty good and I’d say that it is one of the better specials even if it can’t quite keep up with Thanksgiving or the Christmas special. Halloween never could keep up with those two holidays in general though, despite what Teen Titans Go would have you believe.

Linus believes that the great Pumpkin will visit his patch if he waits all night and believes. Sally decides to wait with him although she ultimately regrets it. Meanwhile, Lucy, Charlie Brown, and the other characters all decide to go trick or treating. It’s safe to say that Charlie’s group has the better time, even if things don’t go well for Charlie Brown. Lets face it, things never go well for Charlie. Luck is not on his side and getting rocks instead of candy must be pretty insulting. A third plot is about Snoopy taking on enemy fighters in his imagination. That Dog sure can fly!

You can tell that this is one of the older specials since some characters act a little differently than usual. For example, Charlie and Linus aren’t really close friends in this one. They hang out, but Charlie quickly attacks Linus verbally when he is talking to Sally since Charlie doesn’t trust the guy. Linus also doesn’t seem quite as smart since he has apparently been waiting in the patch every year for a while now and never saw the Great Pumpkin. I guess he made a little slip every year which caused him to still think that it was real, like doubting for a moment. Still, it is quite sad for him.

As for Charlie, his costume was pretty bad. I’m sure that he would have at least gotten some candy if he hadn’t made his costume a broken ghost. Just find a new bed sheet and cut in two holes, it’s not exactly rocket science! Charlie takes it all in stride though and actually doesn’t spend a lot of time complaining about how bad things are for him. Maybe this was before he got really jaded with humanity. Charlie’s plot was more fun than Linus’ even if it was shorter.

Snoopy’s plot is fairly standard as we’ve seen these Red Baron fights a few times before. I thought it was all right and the scene didn’t last too long so it doesn’t drag. I preferred Snoopy’s plot in the Thanksgiving special as he made himself a feast, but eating such a large meal for every holiday is a good way to put on the pounds and Snoopy has to stay fit.

The animation and soundtrack are roughly the same as always. The style works well enough for the Peanut specials and it isn’t that bad. Most of the alternatives would be better, but it is what it is. The soundtrack isn’t particularly memorable, but these specials are more about the dialogue than anything else. The writing is good so I have no complaints there. The special is also pretty short like the others as it is less than half an hour long. You’ll be breezing through this one.

Overall, It’s the Great Pumpkin is on the better half of most Charlie Brown specials. That being said, there’s no real reason to rewatch it when you could revisit the Thanksgiving or Christmas specials. It’s a fun enough story, but experiencing it once will probably be enough. I definitely do recommend it if you haven’t seen this special yet. On my quest to watch them all, I’ll eventually be seeing the Election Day special. Once that happens, I’m confident that it will beat this one and maybe even the Thanksgiving one as it soars up to the top of the ranks. It’s just hard to picture the Election Day one not being awesome. It’s such a cool concept for Charlie and the gang.

Overall 7/10