April 01, 2009

Notes From A DVD Geek

by Jeremy Lassen

I’m going to make it short and sweet this month. Just the good stuff!

Two films of note (recently released on DVD domestically) by Japanese director Takashi Miike: The first is an adaptation of “Crows Zero” from the popular manga of the same name. This one might be seen as "Heathers" meets "The Sopranos" --Japanese style. The other is "Sukiyaki Western: Django". This one is Akira Karasawa’s "Ran" meets "A Fist Full of Dollars". It’s in the tradition of a spaghetti western Django movie, but has a mind-blowing color pallet, and over-the-top stylization of Miike. Good stuff all around. While neither of these movies is exactly horror or science fiction, they get special mention here because of Miike’s interest to genre movie watchers in general, and because they are so damn surreal as to quite possibly be fantasy.

March Bestesellers


1. Little Brother by Cory Doctorow
2. Caryatids by Bruce Sterling
3. Lamentation by Ken Scholes
4. Graveyard Book by Neil Gaiman
5. Storm From the Shadows by David Weber
6. Contagious by Scott Sigler
7. Fool by Christopher Moore
8. Judging Eye by R. Scott Bakker
9. White Witch, Black Curse by Kim Harrison
10. The Steel Remains by Richard Morgan

Mass Market Paperbacks

1. Death's Daughter by Amber Benson
2. The Good Fairies of New York by Martin Millar
3. Escapement by Jay Lake
4. Mainspring by Jay Lake
5. The Dreaming Void by Peter F. Hamilton
6. Territory by Emma Bull
7. Small Favor by Jim Butcher
8. Galaxy Blues by Allen Steele
9. Night Life by Caitlin Kittredge
10. Lost Colony by John Scalzi

Trade Paperbacks

1. Breathers: A Zombie's Lament by S.G. Browne
2. Jailbait Zombie by Mario Acevedo
3. Postsingular by Rudy Rucker
4. Palimpsest by Catherynne Valente
5. Shambling Towards Hiroshima by James Morrow

Miscellany - Watchmen, Ebooks, Current Reading

by Alan Beatts

This month I've a collection of miscellany for you all. Sort of a sound-bite article, with bits about eBooks, The Watchmen (both movie and comic), and some teasers about stuff I've read that you won't be able to buy for _months_.

The Watchmen --
I made time (with some difficulty) to go check out the movie about two weeks ago and I've got to say, I was almost completely happy with it. There might have been one or two little things I would have changed but they were so minor that they're not really worth mentioning.

The thing that really stood out for me in the film was the sheer (and very deeply _not_ Hollywood and _not_ safe) faithfulness to the original material. I really didn't expect it, despite hearing all about how respectful the production was meant to be (really, I thought that was a case of "the lady doth protest too much"). Granted there were a few changes but I thought that they were mostly wise choices that reflected the differences between film and graphic novels.