All posts tagged: Jurassic Park

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The Great Summer Movies: Hold On To Your Butts

It is the summer of 1983. I sit in the River Oaks Theaters with my dad. I watch R2D2 get blasted by a stormtrooper, and I gasp. It’s the summer of 1993. I sit alone in the theater at Chicago Ridge Mall. I watch a Tyrannosaurus Rex attempt to eat an obnoxiously precocious child, and I gasp. It’s 2003. I sit at the AMC Lowes Streets of Woodfield with my fiancé. I watch Laurence Fishburn fight an albino on top of a moving semi truck, and I gasp. It’s 2013. My Father’s Day present is a ticket to watch Kirk and Spock once again attempt to save the galaxy. At some point, I probably gasp. (apologies to Alan Moore and Dave Gibbons) I can’t let go of summer movies. It’s still a near-perfect form of escape. Writing about them lets me escape too, a kind of critical nostalgia that lets me pretend I’m participating in a conversation that actually ended decades ago. All those summer afternoons and evenings, escaping into the chilly coccoon of an …

Confessions of a Comics Shop Junkie, No. 50

Here we go again with Confessions of a Comics Shop Junkie, in which I opine on various recently released publications of the sequential graphic nature, some of which may be sitting on the rack at a comics shop, or awaiting the click of a button on some online merchant’s web page, near you. If you’re lucky. Or not, as the case may be. THE SPIRIT #10 Script: David Hine; Art: Moritat DC Comics, $2.99 I read the first issue of this, DC’s latest attempt to sell us Will Eisner’s most memorable character, and reviewed it several months ago. As I recall, I liked it OK but wasn’t compelled to follow up on it, nor was I particularly drawn to the other “First Wave” titles either, though I thought they were, for the most part, handled well. However, after a long period of overlooking The Spirit, my admittedly flighty attention was captured by the minimal, but really striking, Jose Ladronn cover to this issue that you see at left- Denny Colt, against a stark white background, …

Revival House: Thirteen Badass Cinematic Creatures

King Kong, from King Kong (1933). In terms of special effects, the big ape in Peter Jackson’s 2005 remake might look better, but it’s hard to top the badassity of Kong 1.0, who leaves people flopping about like squished bugs after he steps on them. This Kong has no time for ice-dancing excursions. Pioneering stop-motion animator Willis O’Brien’s work is still an impressive sight after all these years. Badassitude Level: Eighth wonder, people. Godzilla, from Gojira (1954). A prehistoric mutant creature accidentally created by radiation from a nuclear explosion, Godzilla might be the most iconic movie monster of all time. As the series of Godzilla films progressed, he went from menacing threat to hero, and thus less badass (though in later films he was more of an antihero). But in director Ishiro Honda’s original film (not the “Americanized” re-edited version released here in 1956), the allegorical elements warning of the dangers of nuclear testing are much more prominent. Godzilla has admittedly never looked realistic — it’s all too obviously a guy in a lizard suit …

Farkakte Film Flashback: When Good Dinosaurs Go Bad

I’m not a fan of the Ice Age movies. OK, I like the little squirrelly guy who continually risks severe bodily injury in search of a nut, because I can relate to that. But it seems to me the minute Ray Romano and Denis Leary open their animated mouths to earn their paychecks for a day and a half’s work, the air drains out of the entire enterprise. This week marks the opening of the third film in the Ice Age series, Ice Age: Dawn of the Dinosaurs, which — in a signal of the level of desperation among the marketing specialists herded into a room to come up with these movies — adds the aforementioned dinosaurs to the mix, despite their extinction 25 million years before the Ice Age movies take place. Now, I don’t expect cartoons to be realistic, necessarily; I know most prehistoric sloths didn’t talk like John Leguizamo either. But this seems particularly bald-faced: Why not add in a contingent of robots and space aliens while you’re at it? (That sound …