Martial Arts in Media Winter 2016

American author Thomas Wolfe once wrote a book called You Can’t Go Home Again – a phrase that, over the years, has come to signify that attempting to recapture the joys of one’s youth is folly. In fact, on the Wikipedia page it flatly states “attempts to relive youthful memories will always fail.” Well, if
More —

(Not) Frozen in Time

Be warned: it is very hard to discuss the Disney Animation Studio’s new semi-musical film Frozen without teetering periously close to spoilers. But really, spoiler-squawkers, IT’S A DISNEY FILM. Whadyathink, everyone DIES at the end? The reason it’s tough to talk Frozen sans spoilery allusions is that the very thing which makes it special —
More —

Monsters U & Despicable 2

The superiority of Pixar really gets put into perspective when you see any one of their features back to back with animation from any other studio. In this case I spent my Independence Day taking in the fireworks of Despicable Me 2 right after Monsters University. DM2 is a production of Illumination Entertainment (distributed by
More —

Toys (& me) on the Hudson

This weekend: Laying turkey-stuffed on the sofa watching football? Braving the best America has to offer in the way of products and people on Black Thursday/Friday? Lucky you. Me: I’ll be somewhat out of place at Toys on the Hudson, the “tri-state area’s first family-focused toy fair.” According to their press release, “Featured will be
More —

And Now for Something Completely Ridiculous

I always wondered why the “Vikings” from How to Train Your Dragon spoke with thick Scottish accents…. First, some background. Jeffrey Katzenberg was responsible (mostly according to him, partially according to his studio nemeses) for the resurgence of Walt Disney animation during the Michael Eisner administration (resulting in everything from Beauty and the Beast to
More —

Who Killed John Carter?

… and, maybe more importantly, why? Because make no mistake. John Carter did not die naturally. First he was murdered by the title. Based generally on Tarzan creator Edgar Rice Burroughs’s John Carter of Mars “Barsoom” books, and specifically on the A Princess of Mars novel, Disney, in their wisdom, not only lopped “Mars” from
More —

Thanksgiving Double Feature Part 2: The Muppets

The Muppets is incredible for a few reasons. First, it’s a good Muppet movie, an event that hasn’t occurred since, arguably, the second of their six theatrical films (the last being in 1999). Second, it’s a film that gets better the more you think about it, which is a rare occurrence in any case, and
More —