Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Ahhh.. Ramona Flowers.. (Scott Pilgrim vs. The World)

This movie in particular was recommended to me by my brother most likely because of my personal interests are very evident in this awesome live-action graphic novel adaptation. Music, specifically playing the bass guitar (there are band battles and Scott Pilgrim is in a band and plays bass), Games (the movie runs like a video game with video game SFX, and enemies turning into coins when stamped out) and a lot of Game-based awesome action scenes. To be exact, the Universal Studios intro playing on 8-bit music and the short Zelda track at the beginning of the movie instantly got my "gamer blood" raging. But that's just the tip of the iceberg. What really kept my eyeballs glued to the screen was the movie's lead female, Ramona Flowers... ahhh.. <3

Hey, what's that look for? mufufufufu.. :) The hot and cool (pun not intended) babe Ramona Flowers as played by the lovely Mary Elizabeth Winstead. She plays the role of Scott Pilgrim's dream girl (literal) and love interest in the story. Her dyed hair reminds me of Clementine from Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind. Well, I think she's too sexy for the role. (or maybe I just think I should be playing Scott Pilgrim. LOL)

Scott Pilgrim vs. The World's theatrical poster. "An epic of epic epicness." Oh, and yeah, this movie, I must say, is definitely EPIC. 'nuff said. :) Also, I love his Rickenbacker 4003 bass. Reminds me of Haruko from FLCL. Now I'm starting to think the 4003 is really made to pwn villains.

Scott Pilgrim (Michael Cera) is 22 years old, plays bass in a rock band called Sex Bob-omb with his friends and is dating a 17-year old high school girl named Knives Chau (Ellen Wong). Pretty cool if you ask me, but later on he meets a mysterious girl, Ramona Flowers, who has appeared a couple of times in his dreams and instantly fell in love with her and reluctantly dumps Knives (uh-oh..). As he continues to win the heart of Ramona, something unexpected happened as he was challenged by a weird guy named Matthew Patel (Satya Bhabha) in a duel to the death while in the middle of a band contest for the G-Man record label. Strangely too, he was able to give the guy a good beating and defeat him in the end turning him into a bunch of coins (insert Mario coin sound effect here). Turns out, Matthew is one of Ramona's "evil exes", and in order for him to date Ramona he still has to defeat the remaining six of her so-called "seven evil exes". Wow. So Ramona is THIS popular. :)

The totally awesome Scott Pilgrim as portrayed by Michael Cera. Although I believe could've made it more awesome if I was the one paired up with Mary Elizabeth Winstead, but I digress (still sour graping). He's perfect for the role. :)

Scott Pilgrim's rockin' band, Sex Bob-omb. Stephen "The Talent" Stills (Mark Webber) on the guitar and vocals, Kim Pine (Allison Pill) on the drums, and Scott on bass. They play pretty awesome rockin' tracks throughout the movie.

Despite his friends' protests, Scott dated  a 17-year old high schooler, Knives Chau (Ellen Wong) who's head-over-heels in love with Scott. Too bad she got dumped later after Scott dated Ramona and her at the same time. Lucky bastard.

Scott didn't know what he was getting into and was creeped out by the fact that Ramona's seven evil exes are out to beat his ass to a pulp.

Scott's in for some real hell as he tries to defeat (or at least save his ass) from Ramona's evil exes out to get him. Ramona gave him a list of her seven crazy exes revealing at the same time how weird her love life (or preferences) has been. There's Matthew Patel who dresses up like a pirate and summons voluptous demon girls. Lucas Lee (Chris Evans) who was a famous skater, now a famous actor and brags, he's nothing without his stunt team (acting doubles). Eh? Todd Ingram (Brandon Routh), the bassist for "The Clash at Demonhead", where Scott's ex, Envy Adams (Brie Larson) is the lead singer whom Todd is currently dating. Todd is vegan and has cool "vegan powers" that gives him an extreme advantage against Scott in battles. There's also Roxy Richter (Mae Whitman) who Ramona claims to only have dated her at a time when she was a bit "bi-curious". Roxy is capable of teleportation and uses a bladed chain-sword (similar to the one Ivy from the game Soul Calibur uses). If dating someone from the same sex isn't crazy enough, how about twins? Sex Bob-omb went against the japanese Katayanagi Twins in an amp versus amp battle of EPIC proportions. Scott summoned a gigantic sasquatch from his bass guitar to go up against the Katayanagis' twin dragons summoned from their synths. Last but not the least the final member and perhaps the leader of the league of evil exes, a mystery guy whom they only knew by the name Gideon. Turns out later, he's someone bigger than they'd expected.

Lucas Lee, one of Ramona's evil exes kicks the crap out of Scott Pilgrim. One great thing about the movie is the way the action scenes are portrayed. Greatly executed, incorporates fighting game stuff like combo numbers and stuff and gives you that comic book-like feel of explosive action.

One of the parts I've enjoyed watching in the movie is this bass battle between Todd Ingram and Scott. Scott got pwned since his bass playing, compared to Todd's was meh. LOL

Ramona pulls out her weapon of choice: a huge hammer, as she lashes it out with her evil same-sex ex, Roxy Richter. Cool enough, it came from her small bag: a hammerspace.

A battle of literally epic proportions, Sex Bob-omb battles it out, amp versus amp against the Katayanagi Twins. Their sasquatch against the twins' dragons plus rockin' music gives you one awesome fight scene.

Scott levels up as he earns the "Power of Self-Respect". The best thing, for me, about this movie is its game-related effects and features. Scott levels up, gets 1-ups, enemies get owned by multiple hit combos and turns into coins and shows score points. Plus the cool SFX from old video games makes this movie very unique and awesome.

Hardcore gamers, especially those who still love the classic ones and graphic novel enthusiasts will definitely enjoy this movie for it's computer game-esque feel and the explosive, comic book like action of the fight scenes. Combined with witty comedy, rockin' band tracks, action-packed scenes with awesome and flashy special effects definitely makes this one an EPIC movie experience.
Sunday, December 5, 2010

Tiger versus Dragon! (Toradora!)

Toradora! is one of the most memorable, and one of the best romance series I've ever watched. Though romance really isn't my thing, Toradora! gave me a far different and permanent impression. The progression of the storyline, the timely execution of the plot twists combined with the characters' dramatic outbursts and a perfect dose of comedy definitely had me going on a roller-coaster of  emotions.

Thus begins the crazy romance series that is Toradora!

The story starts out as Takasu Ryuuji enters his second year of high school and tries his best to clear his image of all misconceptions about his personality by altering his "yankee" (delinquent)  looks (which his mother, Yasuko - who claims she's eternally twenty-three, is so proud of, having Ryuuji inherit his real gangster father's looks). Obviously, a little hair gel didn't do the trick and his eyes still give off an aura of trouble causing fear among other students. Luckily, he's classmates with his old friend Kitamura Yuusaku who's willing to help him clear up again his image in the new class and his ultimate crush, the cute and hyper airhead Kushieda Minori. But the misconceptions of his personality blew off unexpectedly quick after his first encounter with the infamous "Palmtop Tiger", Aisaka Taiga whom he accidentally bumped in the hallway, taken an instant dislike to his disgusting "yankee" face and sent him face flat on the ground with a single knockout punch. Turns out Ryuuji wasn't that tough after all. What's worse is Taiga also happened to be in his class and is Minori's best friend. Way to go Ryuuji.

Crazy romance ensues as Ryuuji found out Taiga coincidentally lives next door after a violent, late evening encounter regarding a misplaced love letter for Kitamura and an exchange of secrets on who their crushes are. They then settled on an agreement to help each other out in winning the objects of their affections. Ryuuji also found out that Taiga lives alone due to family issues, doesn't know domestic chores and lives mostly on convenience store food. So, Ryuuji being the nice and helpful guy he actually is, cooked good food for Taiga and even cleaned out her messy apartment (not to mention her hellspawn-ridden nasty kitchen sink). Taiga, taking advantage of the fact that Ryuuji would do absolutely anything in order to get closer to Minori and would even follow her like a loyal dog to do so, turns it into a master-slave relationship and decides to spend most of her time at Ryuuji's enjoying free meals and the warmth of a real family.

As they try to help improve each other out for their crushes, the more they were seen together, and the next thing they knew, rumors spread like wildfire that they were a couple. Well from there on, things began to move in a different direction as the two slowly got along more and more with each other.

"Wanna taste my knuckle sandwich?!"
Toradora!'s petite and feisty tsundere, Aisaka Taiga. Her courtesy of greeting everyone with a piercing stare and a clenched fist earned her the famous albeit dreaded title of "Palmtop Tiger".
"Whatcha lookin' at punk?!"
Takasu Ryuuji's eyes speak in a far different tone than his regular kind and reliable self causing other students to give up their wallets the instant they bump into him and teachers to sink in their seats every time they had to talk to him. Dreaded albeit unfortunately misunderstood.

Taiga and Ryuuji's first meeting ended with a bang just as quick as it was accidental. Apparently, Ryuuji had no idea who he was dealing with and exclaimed a "Naruhodo!" (oh I see!) after seeing Taiga and finally figuring out the moniker of "Palmtop Tiger", then pop! goes the weasel.

The lovely yet cute and athletic airhead of the group, Kushieda Minori. She is Oohashi High's girls' softball team captain and simultaneously works at a number of part-time jobs. An extreme workaholic. She is my personal favorite. Why? Simple. She's just so kawaii. :)

Ryuuji is taken aback and dazzled by Minori's cute smile, wide tantalizing eyes, contagious laughter and the wafting aroma of her sweat after a day's softball practice. Evidently, Ryuuji's got the hots for her.

The rich princess with a gorgeous smile and a dynamite bod, Kawashima Ami and the outspoken, intellectual and overly popular, soon-to-be student council president, Kitamura Yuusaku. Two good friends caught up in the mix of this crazy love polygon.

Ryuuji's buxom and endearing, twenty-three year old mother (as she herself claims but actually she's thirty three. Quite believable though.) Takasu Yasuko. She works nights at a local hostess bar under the name "Mirano". Though childlike and airheaded most of the time, she is a very responsible and loving mother to Ryuuji but can get really tenacious especially when roused while having her beauty sleep.

Toradora pretty much has its own dose of good comedy and hot stuff as well. One of Ryuuji's classmates had this awesome dream of Christmas with sexy bunny girls and Taiga with only a long ribbon to put on. *drool*. Well, the Christmas episodes in my opinion is where things start to snowball downhill with revelations, emotions and drama. Better watch out. Better not cry. :) 

As the story progresses, more characters are thrown into the mix, revealing each one's troubles in life and love as they try to lean on each other for support. Misunderstandings and fights between friends, developing certain love triangles, or better yet, polygons, and life's vicissitudes dealing with personal issues involving family, friends and self-improvement. Life lessons conveyed beautifully in an anime wrapped in friendships, hearts and tears, and how love can be found in places where you least expect it.

 This episode in particular really gave me that twisting, wrenching feel in my chest. Taiga, on her knees on the freezing ground, barefoot and cries alone outside her apartment building. Well, I won't spoil the rest so.. :)

There's something in this world nobody has seen yet.
And if you had been able to put your eyes on it, then you would yearn for it.
For this world has hidden it quite well, so that it is difficult to obtain.
But at some point someone will find it.
And only those who should obtain it will be able to find it.
That's just how it is.

From The Idiot Box

From the screen to your lenses to your brain to your nerves to your heart, lungs and muscles and out. Its a compilation of my take, thoughts and impressions on straight up, good stuff (mostly japanese, anime, music and geek-related) from the idiot box that I like and you might like.

... and idiocy. :)

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