Browsing: Bryan Singer

Reviews x-men-cp-06354907

In many respects, this is the X-Men film I’ve been waiting 14 years for. I’ve been an X-Men fan for nearly 25 years, read the comics in their 2nd or 3rd renaissance in the early 90s and watched the cartoon that was on at the same time. I will not, however, go on to document the many divergences from the Chris Clairmont original story because …

Reviews dofp_2014_1

When a filmmaker’s stumbles—as inevitable as the seasons turning and spectacle-filled summers—he (it’s usually a he) will often return to the genre or franchise where he saw his greatest commercial and critical success. For Bryan Singer, two expensive and underwhelming…

Reviews x_men_days_of_future_past_banner-wide

I grew up enamored by the world of X-Men. While the comic die-hards will most likely fault me for this, the X-Men of my youth were not found on the page, but rather on the small screen. I tuned into FOX weekly for the latest installment of X-Men: The Animated Series. I lived in a world filled with purple Sentinels and muted violence …

Reviews superman_returns_2006_2

Look no further than Superman Returns, Bryan Singer’s (Valkyrie, Apt Pupil, The Usual Suspects) failed attempt to revive Warner Bros. moribund franchise, for a perfect example of how not to reboot a comic book superhero. Tediously reverential and dully respectful of director Richard Donner’s decades-old, over-celebrated contribution to the Superman mythos, Superman Returns was nothing more—or less—than over-long, over-indulgent fan service, albeit fan service with a $200+ million-dollar budget and the full support of Warner Bros. studio executives eager to re-launch one of their most important properties. They, like everyone else who stepped into a movie theater seven years ago, gave Singer—a hot director at the time thanks to X-Men and X-2: X-Men United—the benefit of the doubt. Sadly, Singer squandered all that good will and the result left moviegoers and critics alike frustrated that one of their all-time favorite superheroes had been, once again, ill served.

Reviews Jack-the-Giant-Slayer

Alright, can we stop with all these fairy tale movies now? Snow White and the Huntsman was almost completely intolerable, and Hansel and Gretel: Witch Hunters was a straight-to-DVD mess curiously allowed a theatrical release. Straight off the heels of these two great masterpieces comes Jack the Giant Slayer, a movie so uninspired and dull it makes Witch Hunters look like an unadulterated masterpiece.


It doesn’t sound kosher to smack a fantasy film for being unrealistic. I fully understand that Jack the Giant Slayer is a fantasy epic – one based on a child’s fairy tale, to boot. But watching the finished product, with its transparently fake landscapes and B-level effects and harsh green screen over-lighting, has the effect of watching a well-meaning but horribly produced high school play. Respected actors walk around playing dress-up and swinging daggers at discomforting fake stone creatures while surrounded by a giant beanstalk that looks like a slightly more sophisticated replica of a Sid and Marty Krofft practical effect. By the end, I was disappointed that H.R. Pufnstuf didn’t show up.

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