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Archive | July 2017

Juice is Loose

By Paul Anthony

Juice is on the loose! Well at least come October, the man we all know by his initials, one of the greatest running backs ever to play in the NFL a Hall of famer however his life outside of football is so far from different from his football life. Many may know him has Orenthal James Simpson, the man that ran or in this case drove to get away from police and got away with a possible double Murder and never served a day in prison for those crimes, O.J. however couldn’t stay clean and nine years ago in 2008 he was convicted of armed robbery and kidnapping, he was sentenced to do 30 years with a 9 year minimum without Parole, well those 9 years has passed and he was granted an early release, he is scheduled to get out at some point in October.

During his football career, he seemed to be the prefect citizen who went about his business but something just happened to change with his life when he stepped away from football, pretty much since his 1994 murder case where many people were shocked that he wasn’t convicted, he been committing crimes at an alarming rate for someone who has no record. We can debate if he did or didn’t murder those people however in 1999 the state of California claimed he owes them 1.44 million in back taxes. In 2001, he was arrested for simple Battery and burglary, if he was convicted he could have faced 16 years in prison however once again he was acquitted.

Just a few months later after he was acquitted, the F.B.I searched his house on the suspicion of ecstasy and money laundering, they received a tip that Simpson was involved in some major Drug Trafficking. However, they found nothing that could prove that. In 2002, he was arrested for water speeding when he was going through a manatee protected zone. Then we get to the Vegas Robbery that finally made Simpson serve prison time.

It was reported that while in prison Simpson was a good prisoner which why they granted him an early release. Is he truly reformed or is it because he’s just too old now at 70 years old of course, there is no age range on committing anytime of crime, but could he have been reformed? Many will probably say no considering he should have been in prison years ago and never should have seen freedom again. So here we are, the juice is free but the better question is can Juice stay out of trouble? Please tell me what you think!

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The Dangers of a Stuntman

By Paul Anthony

When you watch a movie, I am sure you enjoy scenes of action, but we all know for the most part the actors and actresses don’t do scenes that will cause harm so they have stuntmen and women do the scenes for them. Sadly, this is a dangerous job and many don’t realize that but sadly what happen last week proves how dangerous this job can be.

Last week a Walking Dead Stuntman died from his injuries when he fell thirty feet onto concrete when he was rehearsing fight scene, he was pronounced brain dead at the hospital and later in the week he was taken off life support and from there the rest is history.

John Bernecker has more than ninety stunts credited to him since 2009 and some of his stunts have come from hit movies like Logan and The Fate of the Furious and upcoming The Black Panther.

This is first death since 2000 in that field, even though its first death since then, that doesn’t change how dangerous the job really is. Many have said it is a lot safer now then it was twenty years ago nonetheless the goal should be zero deaths. The previous death came in 2000 when stuntman Brady Michaels was killed when he was doing a stunt for I Dare You, he fell and hit his head on a rock. Four years before that Paul Dallas also died from a head injury when he fell 57 feet and landed on an airbag that was supposed to catch his fall and it did not. Three years before that Sonja Davis was killed in a high fall during the film Vampire in Brooklyn. These were just a few deaths in the past thirty years. There were three deaths in a 15-year span from 1975 to 1990.

It’s a tough job no matter how safe they can make it. Head Injuries seem to be the main cause of the death in these stunts gone wrong, it’s just a sad reality. Sure, this was a first in 17 years but there always risk for something like these to happen. Equipment that they depend on can and will malfunction, they may not get a lot of recognition for the stunts they do until it’s too late. I don’t see much changing after this, I can’t blame them either because no many how safe you think it is, it only takes one mistake for a death to happen.

To the Family of John Bernecker our prayers go out to you and we are sorry for your loss.

Should there be a solo Dr. Doom movie?

By: Justin Hopkins 

 2017 San Diego Comic-Con is up and running. Kicking off yesterday,  to some exciting news,  trailers,  and appearances. Plenty of excitement and things to look forward to, but Thursday saw a big announcement, in Fox confirming a Dr. Doom movie. 

 This was more of a surprise then it perhaps should have been.  Tide turning a bit to Villain-lead movies. Success of D.C. Suicide Squad,  along with both Gotham City Sirens and Venom is varying degrees of development. Only a matter of time before another was brought up, and in Marvels Illustrious Library, Victor Von Doom ranks easily in the top three, if not number one. Holding his own against every hero faction and at times overwhelming them entirely. Easily, deserves to be front and center, but don’t think it should be down solo or with Fox.

 My first issue being that by the sounds of it, Fantastic Four may not be apart of this. Which severely limits where they can go… except an origin story, and do we really want that? We know who he is. One of the most powerful villains of all. That’s the one we should be seeing, and by doing an Origin story,  the longer we’ll have to wait for it.

 After failing on Doom and the FF on three occasions.  This could serious impact any sort of anticipation for a fourth.  A solo Doom may face even larger odds. Risk of having a slow start, hope it’s loved, and strong word of mouth, to sway those who aren’t willing to take another chance, and then this keeping Dr. Doom away from Disney and the MCU.

 Even if they’d gotten it all right.  Good Fantastic Four and Dr. Doom. Wouldn’t it be so much better with him being with the rest. Being the biggest bad guy the MCU has ever seen. Showing his dominance against the likes of the Avengers, what their version of the FF can be, and he could reign over Latveria and be a constant ever intimidating threat and highly entertaining in any form, even in a cameo or larger role, for years to come against every superhero they have to offer.

 Would love to say I was excited and do hope for the best here. Just cant help but think Fox is trying to make  a quick payday on the villain popularity, and keep the property out of Disney’s hands.

Resident Evil Vendetta review

By: Justin Hopkins 

 Following in the path of the highly enjoyable CG Movies Resident Evil: Degeneration and Damnation. Resident Evil: Vendetta came out to DVD this past Monday. Staring Kevin Dorman as Chris Redfield, Erin Cahill as Rebecca Chambers, and Mathew Mercer coming back as Leon S. Kennedy, and wow was it ever worth the wait. Fun and exciting and improved on the first two.

 Seeing Chris as the lead. Chasing after the big bad of the movie as the stead fast hero we know and love from him was refreshing to see after two adventures with Leon. Adding Rebecca was almost a necessity due to their history together. Loved seeing how she evolved from the Stars Medic to being world leader in medical research and development. How vital she proved to the story. Damn near solving everything herself.  Inclusion of Leon was done well. Despite him and Chris being two of their biggest protagonists. They very rarely appear together in the games. Adventures taking place around one another’s,  with the smallest amounts of cross paths. It Creative and different to see the two Alphas butt heads, due to Leon being drunk and defeated from the years of horror he’d witnessed. It was a powerful moment to see the man always cool under pressure beginning to show cracks.  Of course was exciting to see the two fighting alongside each other.

 Glenn Arias was the master criminal. Guy who made the wrong enemies,  that lead to his friends and family being slaughtered on his wedding day. Creating a mutated version of the A virus to make those infected recognize him as friendly and not attack. Using it to bring back his loved ones,  and unleashing it on New York City. Insanity reaching the point where he kidnapped Rebecca and tried to infect and marry her to replace his dead wife. Clich, but made a spectacular foil for Chris and Leon and thrilling finally when he mutated into a Tyrant.

 Scenes and imagery were top notch. At times appearing to be live action blend. Giving us plenty of nostalgia. From the start, when Chris and his team enter the mansion, being the exact same from the first game. Not only were the images ripped straight from the game, but even the camera angles were the same. Seeing them the way you would your character when you were in the same location.  Marked out seeing the return of the zombie Dobermans.

 This is how Resident Evil should be done.  New story revolving around the characters behaving and acting like they would in the games we love. Horror, action,  and plenty of emotions.  Voice acting that brought you in and carried the audience along for the ride. Strongly suggest picking up this movie, and am excited to see what comes next. 

Passing of a Horror Genre Pioneer

By: Justin Hopkins 

 On July 16th, the world lost a true Hollywood Legend.  George Andrew Romero,  past away at the age of 77, after a battle with lung cancer. Looking back through movie history,  can mark several important moments,  but perhaps none bigger then the one started by the Godfather of Zombies himself, but before we get to that.  Lets go a little further back. 

 Born in February 4, 1940, in New York City, New York. Found his love behind the camera at an early age. Attending Carnage-Mellon Institute, filming commercials and short films for Mister Rogers Neighborhood. From there he’d launch his career to a much larger stage. 

 Going into 1968, zombies had been around for quite awhile. Coming back to life through Voodoo or other mystical forms. George took this idea, turned it on its head,  and gave us something terrifying.  

 The original Trilogy of the Dead (Night, Day, and Dawn) are still considered amongst the best horror movies of all-time. Style and pacing were perfect. Creating a sense of fear and paranoia, that are still almost unrivaled. Using a diverse cast, weaved social commentary and phobias into each. 

 His Zombies didn’t stop here though. Think about all zombies we’ve come to see and love. All the various movies, TV Shows, Comics,  and Video Games. All of which are routed right back to his vision of how they should be portrayed.

 Outside the trilogy, and his return to the genre with Land of the Dead, gave us classics, with The Crazies, Monkey Shines, and Creepshow. Along with perhaps the best shakey cam flick,  Diary of the Dead. 

 Hollywood lost one of its greatest pioneers to the Horror Genre.  Leaving an impact that had reverberated for decades since, and will continue far into the future.  Our deepest condolences to the entire Romero Family, during their time of grieving.

Did you know: Bollywood edition

By Paul Anthony

I always thought about Bollywood, I have heard things about it but knew very little about. In fact, the only thing I knew about it was basically it was the Hollywood of India. Now I must admit I don’t know much about the culture of India but outright saying Bollywood doesn’t sound like it fits in, doesn’t it? So, I decided to take the time to look in to Bollywood. Now this blog might sound different than our previous blogs but either way I hope you enjoy learning something new. Or who knows you may know more about Bollywood than I do.

First let’s start with the name Bollywood, did you know that it’s not actually called that. In fact, Bollywood is nothing more than a Nickname that mostly used outside of India. When we say it, we believe it to be all of India cinema but the truth is that it is only a part of much larger cinema they have. So, what is it called then? Well the real name is Hindi Cinema and it is in the city Mumbai which was formally known as Bombay. Bollywood counts as 43 percent of the box office revenue in Indian Cinema beating the film producers by 7 percent. Bollywood also sold 3.5 billion tickets worldwide in 2011 beating Hollywood by 900,000 tickets. When it comes to the number of films in Indian Cinema Bollywood produced 252 films out of 1969 films. Bollywood got its name in the 1970s when it over took America as being the world largest film producer. Not everyone enjoys the name Bollywood many believe it makes Hindi Cinema a poor cousin to Hollywood.

Did you know that most of Bollywood films are musicals with different plots. However, most plots are Melodrama, which typically sensational and designed to appeal strongly to emotions. The earliest known films that happen in India dates back all the way to 1913 with silent films.

Bollywood has had its influence even on us, if you haven’t notice in the past decade there have been a resurgence in the musical genre and those films have been successful, these ideas all came from Bollywood. Like we have here there are families of actors and actresses that considered to be legends and carrying the load so Bollywood can shine as bright as it. They have some actors and actresses that are considered some of the best worldwide!

How cool is this information? To know there are tons of other great films out there that need to be watched, sure they may need subtitles but who cares a little reading won’t hurt. Heck I wouldn’t mind getting chance to watch a few films myself. I would encourage you to find a few films from Bollywood and let us know what you think of them.

A Great Loss

By Paul Anthony

Last week Joan Boocock passed away from a stroke. Now many of us probably never heard of her in our lives and that doesn’t mean anything, so don’t feel bad but the truth is you probably saw her at many red-carpet premieres when Marvel releases a film. If you’re wondering why then wonder no longer because she was Stan Lee wife of get this 70 years. That’s something to be proud of, many of us would love for our marriages to last that long. Now she may never have been as famous as her husband but that doesn’t mean she didn’t have a strong impact on the stuff we love and enjoy.

Stan Lee basically the godfather of comics and Marvel true hero, had it not been for him, Marvel may not have survived at all and grow into an empire. There was a moment where This nightmare could have happened. At one point Lee fell into a depression and was deciding to leave the business but Joan stepped in and gave him great advice. “Why don’t you write one comic you’d be proud of” The quote would sink in and sure enough it worked. Lee wrote a comic he would be proud of. That comic book would be called The Fantastic Four and the rest they say is history.

I always believed that behind every great man is a great woman, Lee a legend but it was thanks to his wife. Boocock had a career of her own, during her prime she was hat model, when she married Lee she went on to have two kids with Lee however one passed away few days after birth, I can’t imagine the pain that they had to go through but the good news was that they went through it together and not alone.

Boocock did more, she ended up getting her book published and her daughter revealed that she had a few novels unpublished but they are completed, she also did some voice acting for a few marvel cartoons, which was fitting since she was basically a queen in Marvel. Now sadly she passed away from a stroke on July, 6th.

Now I wanted to this blog after I saw how both Marvel and DC came together and mourn the loss of Joan Boocock and hoped Stan Lee the best. Which shows you how respected Stan Lee in the comic book world. I know he might be feeling lost after all he lost one of the most important people in life. Here at Smash Writing we wish your family nothing but the best and we are sorry for your loss.

Should more video game movies switch to animation? 

By: Justin Hopkins 

 Attempts to turn Video Games into live action movies, have so far been a bust. With one Mortal Kombat  being their only real highlights.  Doom, Assassin’s Creed, and the dumpster fire that was Super Mario being total failures, and although Resident Evil series brought in over a billion dollars,  only three of the six were enjoyable. Treating most of the beloved character’s from the game like subpar nuisances. Could keep going, but I’m not trying to bash their attempts, but bring up another possible avenue.

 Castlevania is riding high. Loved by fans and critics. They’ve been applauded for keeping close to the games history. Couldn’t recommend Resident Evil Degeneration and Damnnation more.  Tremendous titles,  and a third, Vendetta, on its way next week.  Starts to beg the question,  should these Video Game companies start thinking CG Animation over live action?

 They’d have an easier time keeping characters truer to themselves. Eliminating who has the right look and feel, and just cast a right voice. Can load it with the gore and action it needs,  without risking an injury, or whether or not the monsters or effects look bad with a real person in the mix. 

 Games like Doom would be perfect following Resident Evil’s lead to CG Movies.  Allowing better more terrifying demons and hell spawns, weaponry, and space marine.  The future tech of Master Cheif, as well as not worrying about casting that part, and inevitable angering fans over the choice. Call of duty or even the world of Grand Theft Auto.

On the other hand, they can follow Castlevania. Imagine a full season of Silent Hill. Each episode taking you deeper into their Psychological horror.  Every new season can showcase another.  Jackie Estacado and the Darklings, journey through mob wars and other supernatural battles in the darkness, or venture through nuclear wastelands that is Fallout. All of which done that much better with animation, on Netflix or other streaming services. 

 Resistance: Fall of Man, F.E.A.R, Dead rising, and so many others can do so well in this form. Beloved characters,  rich story lines, and terrific way to rebuild interest into making more games. Computers have come along way, and successes starting to collect more and more. Assassin’s Creed is already coming back,  with an animated series. Plenty of room for others, and fan bases who would love to see them.

 

Spider-Man Homecoming Review

By Paul Anthony

When Sony and Marvel worked out a deal to have Spider-Man in the MCU, we all knew we would get a Spider-Man that we wanted, sure enough Marvel came through. Which means Marvel and Sony going to make a large profit with this deal they made, first let’s start with the story overall.

We finally get see spider-man learning on the job of sorts, being a kid and trying to save the day, Sony try this in the past, with Andrew Garfield, but they decided to cast an older man to play a boy role and that isn’t a knock towards Andrew but more towards Sony, so they couldn’t really keep peter in high school for long. But to have a teen playing the role is brilliant.

Peter is now his right age meaning he’s going to save the day but only as a kid would, we can see peter start to grow but at the end he is still a kid and mistakes happen. Iron Man in as we all know but he doesn’t steal show but serves as mentor, Downey shines as Tony in the scenes that he is in but let’s Tom Holland steals the entire show. Finally seeing a new villain in the vulture with a back story, which we saw in Civil War, they were good guys but the Avenger’s actions made them turn to the other side.

Overall casting gets great reviews also, some names were changed but honestly its nothing major to make you hate that they changed it. In Marvel, we trust so no worries there. The comedy wasn’t force the kid humor there but since they are truly kids it felt natural not like in the Amazing Spider-Man.

The writing, the action and comedy are all there, not bad at all and the best part is even though it’s a first film in the series it wasn’t an origin story, we know Uncle Ben dies and Peter could have saved him, in one way or another, Marvel doesn’t speak of Uncle Ben this around or even how he died, Peter does mention that Aunt May has been through a lot, which is their way of acknowledging he’s passing.

I mention villains early on with the vulture but he wasn’t the only villain, Marvel did a great job with putting in more villains without stuffing them in like Spider-Man 3 and The Amazing Spider-Man 2 did, we meet two versions of the Shocker and see the Scorpion make a few appearances, the plot doesn’t have anything to do with them so it makes sense that they around much, it seems like Marvel saw Sony’s mistakes and taught them how to correct them.

At the end of the day, this is the Spider-Man film we needed. Marvel needed to make sure this film would click because the pressure was on them since Sony without saying it, had no idea how to reboot the series again.

This was a must-see film and fun for all ages to see it. In the end, I am giving it 4.7 stars out of five. If you need a movie to see, then see this one!

Spider-Man Homecoming review 

By: Justin Hopkins 

 Movie I have been waiting for is finally here.  Ever since the deal between Sony and Disney. His strong performance in Civil War. I’ve been pumped up and excited for Spider-Man Homecoming. Staring Tom Holland as Peter Parker, and was the wait ever worth it. Giving us a movie that I wasn’t expecting,  and way better then what I was thinking it would be. 

 From the start,  it started with a little homemade video Peter made of him being recruited to fight with Tony Stark. Excitement of him being sought after, and hyped over his next big mission, and that’s what this movie really does right.      Showing Peter Parker as a kid, who is still trying to learn his way in the world, with a big boost to his ego, with that mission when he still has alot more to learn as both Peter and Spider-Man. From being over confident, humbled, and atoning, learning what it takes and willingness to do just that. 

Not enough good things can be said about Tom Holland’s performance.  Coming off a compelling cameo in Civil War, Tom was still going to have to prove himself against what Tobey McGuire and Andrew Garfield did; and he did that and more.  Showing the nerdy side of Peter Parker, the heroic, agile,  and fast talking,  witty Spider-Man, and on top of that.  We got the gritty and determined side.  The one who can be humbled and defeated,  and simply own it.  Accepts responsibility for his screw ups, and comes back all that much more determined to succeed. 

 Of course, the right villain is crucial, Michael Keaton showed his best stuff as Adrian Toombs, AKA The Vulture. Dating it back to the Citauri invasion in the first Avengers. Who got shafted out of the clean up job,  by Tony Stark’s clean up crew. Turning to selling alien weaponry, worked up with human tech, by the Tinkerer, with help from The Shocker.  Dangerous and murderous.  To the very end, gave Spider-Man more then he could handle.  Yet, made you feel sorry for the blue collar worker, who was doing everything he could for his family. Keaton gave us a villain that was both complex and with plenty of depth.

 Where to even begin with the supporting cast.  Robert Downey JR, was once again magnificent as Tony Stark.  Even when he stripped Parker of his tech suit. Did it solely because he wanted better for him, and that moment was brought home when Peter said No at the end.  By the way Tony explained to Pepper, it may create an awkward moment for him,  but was proud of him for it. 

 From there you had the tremendous Jacob Batalon’s Ned. Peter’s best friend, who learns his secret at the start.  Giving someone Peter can  vent, talk, and give him support. Great comedic timing,  and added a whole new element to. Bokeen Woodbine added an intense Shocker, Michael Chernus was the eccentric Tinkerer, Jon Favreu’s Happy Hogan, and Laura Harrier. Everyone just did an awesome job and added something unique to the story. The pleasant turn on Zandaya being MJ and have to add Marissa Tomei. She may not have got alot of screen time, but her performance as the loving Aunt May was lovely, and then ending with her walking in on Peter in his suit created a lot of excitement going forward.  Wanting to see how that is going to play out and more of her going forward is only a positive. 

 Jon Watts said he wanted to draw from the old eighties stlye, and it really showed.  Giving us a unique telling of a teenage Spider-Man. An enjoyable coming of age story,  that showed how to display so many different characters, with alot of hope and excitement for the future.