All posts tagged: animation


Pass the Popcorn: “Roger Rabbit” on Blu-Ray? Yes, P-P-P-Please!

Ahhh, the 25th anniversary edition. There’s no quicker way to crush us under the wheels of time. The quarter century mark is usually the first really legitimate proof that a film or album is going to stand the test of time for someone – and this week, someone’s certainly going to be happy over the release of a 25th anniversary edition of the modern classic Who Framed Roger Rabbit, making its debut on Blu-Ray. Based on a wacky pulp novel by Gary […]

TV on DVD: “The PJ’s: Season One”

Anyone who felt that Eddie Murphy had lost his edge after the string of family friendly films he made in the mid to late 90’s should have taken a look at The PJ’s, the stop motion animated series Murphy co-created with Larry Wilmore (who went on to help create The Bernie Mac Show) and Steve Tompkins (whose credits include The Simpsons and In Living Color). Murphy starred in this prime time series that premiered in 1999 and ran for just two seasons. In in, the great comedian created one of his most hilarious and perhaps richest characters in nearly a decade. Season 1 of the show was unceremoniously released on DVD earlier this month, presenting a great opportunity for fans of Murphy, animation and comedy in general to give the show a second look.

TV on DVD: “Adult Swim in a Box” & “Xavier, Renegade Angel: Seasons 1 and 2”

The holidays will have a lot to offer fans of all types of entertainment, including those of us who enjoy some pretty sick and twisted stuff. For those of you who enjoy grown-up animation, Adult Swim has released Adult Swim in a Box, a massive 12-DVD set that includes volumes of several of their classic series, as well as some of their more popular recent efforts. In all, six different programs are represented in the box, each a season’s worth of episodes. This collection is a decent mix of funny, bizarre and down right repulsive animation, the type of entertainment that has made the channel a big hit with stoners, college students and insomniacs. Included in Adult Swim in a Box are: Space Ghost Coast to Coast, one of Adult Swim’s original hits. In it, the Saturday Morning super hero Space Ghost was re-imagined as a talk show host and the end result was often hilarious. Volume Three, the collection included here, contains 24 extended episodes including appearances by Beck, Rob Zombie and the always …

Film Review: “Up”

The new Disney/Pixar collaboration, Up, has just opened to some of the best reviews the studio’s ever received. While it’s a very enjoyable film, I have to say it certainly isn’t among their best, in spite of the talent behind it. As a child, Carl Fredricksen (at this point voiced by Jeremy Leary) is a huge fan of famed adventurer/explorer Charles Muntz (voiced by Christopher Plummer). Young Carl is a true devotee, keeping up with all of Muntz’ doings and is shocked to the core when one of his archaeological finds is disputed as a fraud. While Muntz sets off to clear his name, Carl happens to cross paths with Ellie (voiced by Elie Docter), who is just as much a fan of Muntz as Carl. The two become close, eventually falling in love, marrying and growing old together…all while keeping a coin jar in which they save whatever money they can to one day take a trip to Paradise Falls, the “land lost in time” for which Muntz set out. Carl makes the ultimate kids’ …

TV on DVD: “Gigantor: The Collection Volume 1”

Gigantor: The Collection Volume 1 (2009, Koch Vision) purchase from Amazon: DVD Things my son said to me when I put on Gigantor to watch: “What is THAT? Is that a robot?” “I like the theme song! (singing) Gi-GAN-tor. GI-GAN-TOR!” “Daddy, not everything in black and white is silent.” When I informed him that I would be watching Gigantor: The Collection Volume 1 to review, he exclaimed, “Wait, I want to watch them with you!” So he did. Gigantor is a black-and-white animated TV series about a boy who can control a giant needle-nosed robot and the adventures they have. Its origins date back to the early 1960s with the comic drawings of Japanese artist Mitsuteru Yokoyama. Then called Tetsujin 28-GO, the adventures of the boy and his robot first appeared in a Japanese boys’ magazine and spawned a Japanese animated TV series. Its popularity caught the eye of writer/director/producer Fred Ladd, then enjoying great success having brought Astro Boy to the U.S. He acquired Tetsujin 28-GO to produce 52 English dubbed episodes of the …

DVD Review: “Futurama: Into the Wild Green Yonder”

Futurama: Into the Wild Green Yonder (2009, 20th Century Fox) purchase this DVD (Amazon) Anyone even remotely familiar with science fiction knows that the Star Trek films suffered from a quality curse. It seemed that every odd-numbered film (especially Star Trek V) was absolutely horrible, while the even-numbered movies (in particular Star Trek II) were great. It wasn’t until the cast of Star Trek: The Next Generation began making their own films that the curse was broken, albeit in the worst way: Each of their films (especially Star Trek: Insurrection, which makes Trek V look like Apocalypse Now) –with the exception of First Contact–was exponentially worse than that which came before. All of this is a roundabout way of stating that the original direct-to-DVD episodes of Futurama have become the equivalent of reverse Trek: The odd-numbered episodes are good, while the even-numbered episodes suck. Unfortunately, the latest (and potentially last) installment, Futurama: Into The Wild Green Yonder, is unlucky number four. As viewers of the last installment, Futurama: Bender’s Game will recall, that episode ended …

Battle of the Planets

The Three Strike Rule: Not Just Kids’ Stuff – Quality Animated Television

Hey, all. This week I learned what they mean by “chasing down an interview.” I had been planning to post a conversation with one of the actors from October Road, and the two of us have been playing phone tag for days. My backup plan for this week, a write up of the Gene Wilder special on Turner Classic Movies that premieres Tuesday, fell through when the network failed to get me a screener. Bummer. I love Wilder. Anyway, at the last minute (i.e. Sunday morning) I was hanging with my son on the living room couch when I was inspired to write the following. I hope you enjoy it. Aloha. One of the drawbacks of my son Jacob’s breathing treatments for cystic fibrosis is the amount of television he and his sister, Sophie, end up watching. While we try to curb the level of crap they end up seeing, some things slip thought the cracks. Unfortunately, once an adventure show like Power Rangers kicks down your front door with its level of “fantasy” violence, …