Thoughts on the “Preacher” Pilot

So far I’m enjoying the changes, and the original writing (Cassidy and the cow, Tulip and the kids) is making for compelling character moments.

Two things:

  • My laptop is fixed. YAY!
  • Everything at work is broken. BOO.

However, this means I have some time to throw out a few thoughts on the Preacher pilot. I has been two weeks since I saw it and I didn’t make any notes, so I’m just going to do a light skim and mostly focus on casting. Here we go!

Continue reading “Thoughts on the “Preacher” Pilot”

Hairy, Beary, Beardy Double Feature: The Hateful Eight and The Revenant

Who’s the real ghost here? The man who rose from the grave, or the soulless man who put him there in the first place?

What better way to ring in the new year than by watching the heavily bearded faces of some of my favorite actors spew filthy invective at each other and suffer grotesque and horrifying bodily injury? None! There is no better way.

[Full Disclosure – I didn’t actually see both in the same day, but I saw them within a week of each other. I think had I really done a double feature of both I would have overdosed on ruggedness, run away to the mountains, and  started some kind of feral colony. Anyway, on with the reviews! ]

NOTE: There Will Be Spoilers! 

Continue reading “Hairy, Beary, Beardy Double Feature: The Hateful Eight and The Revenant”

OooooOOOoooOOOOO!!!

If this does go through I’ll be curious to see how he does. I really liked his portrayal of Howard Stark, and he certainly has charisma. But, and this is a dumb thing to fixate on: Jesse has blue eyes. It’s not a major plot detail, although there are moments where it’s mentioned, and I think some characters compare him to Elvis.

Dominic Cooper possibly starring as Jesse Custer?

INTERESTING.

If this does go through I’ll be curious to see how he does.  I really liked his portrayal of Howard Stark, and he certainly has charisma. But, and this is a dumb thing to fixate on: Jesse has blue eyes. It’s not a major plot detail, although there are moments where it’s mentioned, and I think some characters compare him to Elvis.

WE SHALL SEE. But lots of luck to Mr. Cooper if he does portray Jesse – those are some big boots and white jeans* to fill.

The OTHER news is that Lucy Griffiths, of BBC’S Robin Hood, will be cast as “Emily, a no-nonsense single mother.” That is a character invented for the show and I don’t know how I feel about that. I guess we shall see! I liked her in RH and she grew on me in Constantine for the little bit she was on the show. Good luck to her, too!

 

*Gotta have the white jeans. It’s a thing.

https://i2.wp.com/img4.wikia.nocookie.net/__cb20080803053953/marvel_dc/images/7/75/Preacher_01.jpg

Preacher Casting!

Preacher is not a graphic novel for everyone, but I would have said the same about Walking Dead and that blew up like marshmallows in a microwave – I know kindergarten teachers who are rabid fans. Hopefully this show will have the same appeal while sticking to the storylines.

Cassidy has been found!

Joseph Gilgun Cast As Cassidy

Preacher's Hard-Drinking Irish Vampire Cassidy Has Been Found

The site tells me I might remember him as Rudy from Misfits. I don’t know who Rudy is or what the Misfits are but he has the right face for it!

Also, Ruth Negga has been cast as Tulip.

And Ian Colletti as Arseface.

I find myself distressingly out of the loop with these actors – I have no idea who any of them are!

I am so happy this show’s getting made, and on AMC no less, so they won’t shy from some of the…errmm… edgier content in the stories. There’s so much to look forward to – I can’t wait to see who they get for Starr!

And although it’s looking like my dreams of seeing Woody Harrelson as Jody won’t be realized, I am curious to see who they do get to play that role.

Preacher is not a graphic novel for everyone, but I would have said the same about Walking Dead and that blew up like marshmallows in a microwave – I know kindergarten teachers who are rabid fans. Hopefully this show will have the same appeal while sticking to the storylines.

Breakdown: Jesse Custer (the ubiquitous Preacher, not yet cast) has lost his faith and is drinking himself to oblivion while preaching in a small, shithole town in Texas when a strange entity takes up residence in his body. The entity is a creature of limitless power that gives Custer the Word of God, allowing him to command people to do his bidding. However, Custer is conflicted about this power and only uses it in moments of great need – such as defending the love of his life, Tulip, or his drunken reprobate best friend, Irish Vampire Cassidy. Jesse sets out on a quest, with his friends in tow, to understand this power, and ultimately to force God to answer for the faults in His creation. Along the way he encounters a vast, international organization that controls the nations of the world and is bent on bringing about the apocalypse; a couple serial killers and inbred hicks; the KKK; a voodoo priest; an old cowboy; his father’s past as a Vietnam veteran; and a rejected astronaut who has written his life’s message on the earth since he was denied his shot at the stars.

The series was printed in the 90s and is a CLASSIC of modern graphic novels. It deals with so much and is such a uniquely American story.

I CANNOT WAIT!  😀

East Meets Western Review: The Warrior’s Way; The Good, The Bad, and the Weird

The conflict is multilayered – there’s the immediate threat posed by The Colonel and his gang of murderous cowboys, the impending threat posed by the Sad Flutes as they pursue Yang, and the more subtle character conflicts of Yang attempting to leave his violent life behind, and Lynne avenging her family’s murder. If you’ve been watching a lot of Asian import movies in the past ten years, you’ll see a lot of familiar territory explored, but against the Western backdrop everything feels like a fresh new take.

Note: Since The Warrior’s Way is currently in theaters, I’ll try to avoid spoilers. I really do recommend this movie though, you can’t ask for a better time!

One reason why you haven't heard of this movie is the way it was marketed. Does this look like a crazy surrealist Western?

Let me just say that already, The Warrior’s Way is fast approaching the list of My Favorite Movies–a list that has many entries, some changing constantly, but which I will always come back to, again and again. I was really surprised by the vitriolic comments directed at it on the IMDB user board, and I’m not really convinced we saw the same movie, or went into it with the same expectations.

Written and Directed by Sngmoo Lee,

Warrior’s Way is the story of Yang, the world’s greatest assassin and member of the Sad Flutes gang. It’s never explicitly stated where he originates from, but given that the movie  involves ninjas, you might surmise it takes place in Japan, despite the fact that Yang is played by Jang Dong Gun, a Korean actor.  When tasked to kill the last member of a rival clan, thus ending a centuries-old war, he finds he can’t–because the target is a baby. Rather than kill the baby (although there is a  a picture of him in the dictionary under the entry for ‘Murder’) he flees. The rest of the Sad Flutes come after him, including their leader, the Saddest Flute, and so he flees to America with the baby.

The movie is a mix of practical sets and green screen, which lends a charming, nostalgic feel to the precedings. After all, this is NOT a historical movie by any means, and you’ll either suspend your disbelief with the first fight scene, or you won’t, which is probably what happened with all those negative comments. I went in expecting to have fun, and I did, as well as nearly crying at the end.

In the US, Yang finds a crummy town of shanties and shacks, half-digested by the desert, and populated by rustics and–weirdly–the members of a now-defunct circus troupe. The head of the whole shebang is 8-ball, an African-American dwarf (Tony Cox, best known from his role as the larcenous Marcus in Bad Santa) who used to be the circus’s ringmaster. Accompanying him are the various freaks and clowns and bearded ladies you’d expect of a circus troupe. Towering over everything are the skeletal remains of a Ferris wheel, silhouetted against the perpetually-sunset hued sky. He also meets Lynne (Kate Bosworth), whose entire family was murdered by local psycho gangleader The Colonel (Danny Houston, at his greasy, frightening best) and who desperately attempts to train herself with knives, despite being really, really inept at it.

As with more traditional Westerns before it, Warrior’s Way depicts Yang as a sort of Man with No Name trope; he comes to the town and begins to make a place for himself and the child, taking over his dead friend’s laundry and teaching Lynne how to be a better knife-thrower. I do have to say, at first when he took over the laundry house I kind of cringed, but it was also an interesting character and story move–here’s a man who has killed hundreds and could rule this town like a tyrant-king, but instead chooses to take up almost the lowest rung on the social ladder of the town. Not because he can’t do anything else, but because he is inflicting a self-punishment by washing other people’s drawers.

Not just a pretty face, he's also socially conscious! With cute anime shirts!

There has been much criticism about the stoic, almost monosyllabic performance by Jang in the film, compared to Geoffrey Rush’s over the top town drunk, or Kate Bosworth’s rootin-tootin performance as Lynne. I think it’s just a problem of perspective — having watched a lot of Asian and specifically Korean movies, I had no trouble connecting with Yang. The man was trained from a young age to be an emotionless murder machine, so as he attempts to cultivate gentleness within himself he also learns how to express himself without, you know, killing people.

Even a slight shift of his brows is for him like writing pages and pages of long slobby poetry about his feelings. Also, it’s not like Clint Eastwood was a fount of emotion in his Westerns–he got angry. He yelled. That’s about it. Unless we’re talking about Paint Your Wagon, which we’re not. Ever.

The conflict is multilayered – there’s the immediate threat posed by The Colonel and his gang of murderous cowboys, the impending threat posed by the Sad Flutes as they pursue Yang, and the more subtle character conflicts of Yang attempting to leave his violent life behind, and Lynne avenging her family’s murder. If you’ve been watching a lot of Asian import movies in the past ten years, you’ll see a lot of familiar territory explored, but against the Western backdrop everything feels like a fresh new take.

I also wanted to say that I was happy Lynne and Yang sort of almost start a relationship–too often in movies the minority mentor winds up a sexless monk, all teachy and supporty without any exploration of more complex feelings that would develop in such a relationship.

So the long and short of it is see the movie, it’s worth it. At the least, it’s definitely worth a rent on a Saturday night, best viewed with friends.

Warrior’s Way is in theaters right now. GO! GO SEE IT!