May as well.

(I’ve got nothing but the vast chaos that lives between my ears to source this line of logic. Just a heads up.)

I’ve noticed something. People can justify far more when something’s chalked up to nostalgia. I’m speaking specifically of movies.

I’m the last one to point it out but this last decade of movies has been, for the most part, a slew of reboots. Each person has their own opinion of said reboots. Many nerds foam at the mouth like a coked-up wombat at the notion of one of their precious canons being tinkered with by new talent. And I get that for the most part. There are some who look at it with excitement; hope that it’ll be just as good as the last one.

Sometimes that happens. Most times not, in my experience.

We need these remakes. I think it’s going to lead to something better in the future. When a studio looks at a nostalgic IP and thinks it’ll make them a quick buck, that’s when you run into Transformers. When you get a studio that wants to reimagine the world or explore deeper into the setting and they put their best effort into it, you end up with things like Dredd or 3:10 To Yuma or True Grit.

There’s a lesson in here.

What we DON’T need is a posse of sequels following the terrible remakes…like Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen.

I’m sort of harping on that, aren’t I?

Well…thing is, as you all probably know, Michael Bay’s remaking Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. It’s got lots of Bay’s tropes in it. Snazzy graphics, epic action, shaky cameras, terrible dialogue.

Most people I’ve talked to about it are not amused. Some are outraged as if Bay hired a howler monkey to pee in their cereal while the trailer was playing. Others are more hopeful. It’s the normal crowd I see with these sorts of remakes.

But those people who are not amused? The folks who don’t think the movie is going to be all that great? I hear something from the majority of them:

“May as well. Could be good.”

May as well is a fascinating phrase. It’s what keeps us humans going, I think (until I change my opinion of course). When you’ve got a new experience that you’re hesitant about, that ‘May As Well’ mindset is what opens your horizons, gets you going farther, helps you understand yourself. It’s neat. Never tried fish before? Think it’s icky? Tried it? Liked it? BOOM, fish is on the menu.

But in regard to movies? When the skeptics all join the excited people on opening weekend, Hollywood takes a look at the numbers. All they see is a big opening weekend. They say “The world loves this movie!”. And what I hear a lot from those people who saw it is “Eh, it’s was ok.”

Hollywood doesn’t hear that. They see the high numbers and they slate a sequel right away.

And that sequel? Never better than the first remake. More often than not, worse. One of my favorite reviewers, MovieBob, actually recommends the fourth transformers more than the rest because it doesn’t suck as bad. I would hope after three movies it would.

I’d also hope we didn’t let a director spend just under a billion dollars on four movies to prove he can make one that’s better than three terrible ones.

But that’s just me.

Oh, and they’ve also greenlit a fifth and sixth movie.

These are starting to compete with the Rocky movies and the Land Before Time grindhouse…soon we’ll be watching Transformers IX: Dirty Underside of the Kitchen Cupboard’s Vengeance.

If we give them a good showing for TMNT we can expect to see more of it.

If we don’t, we will ALL STILL GET TO SEE IT.

For realsies. You don’t think if TMNT gets a bad reception they won’t try to squeeze what money they can by offering it to Netflix and the other distributors?

I don’t mind that they made Transformers. I DO mind that we’ve been incentivizing them so much that they’ve made more of the same crap three more times. I feel we haven’t gained anything really.

“But it’s just dumb fun! How can you hate dumb fun, Micah?”

I don’t hate dumb fun. I watch those movies all the time. Take Jonah Hex. I’m a fan of it. I put it on when I’m painting. It’s positively a lark. But if they made a Jonah Hex 2, I’d be just as mad. It’s not worth a sequel.

“This is just your opinion. I liked the Transformers and I’m interested in watching TMNT.”

Fantastic! You’re that other group I was talking about: the excited crowd. Good for you. Watch what you please. But I’m not talking to you.

I’m talking to the skeptics. The ones who are sure it’s a dumb movie but ‘may as well see it’. Stop there. Vote with your dollar. If you want to see better movies than are being made right now, you’ve got to stop paying the people who are making the bad ones.

You. Will. See. It. Anyway. Hell, go to the dollar showing. But when you go and spend $8-$12 on an opening night, that’s eight to twelve more reasons they should make another one of these.

Even as I’ve written this I’ve sort of changed my mind. Getting your thoughts on paper’ll do that. If you do try the fish (in this case the first movie in a potential series) and it doesn’t turn out good, stop trying it. If Hollywood sees enough sales from the first movie because a lot of people gave it a chance, they might make a second movie. I suppose it’s in their best interest after all. But when that sequel comes out? You can bet it’s more of the same. If the first movie leaves a bad taste in your mouth or gives you runny shits or makes you smell like cod for the rest of the day, then don’t try it again. Don’t see that second movie.

I think I lost the reins on that analogy for a second…

At this point, I’m rambling. Any questions, just ask. And hey, it might be good. I’m hopeful that TMNT 2014 isn’t the entertainment equivalent of a garbage fire full of zombies.

At the very least, thanks for reading.

P.S. The new line of turtles toys terrifies me. The sort of nightmare fodder that sits on my shelf until I’m asleep before coming down and skinning my eyelids to make little shoulder pauldrons for their next encounter versus Shredder.

On-week Netflix Nut 6/15-6/21

Let’s start something new! It’ll be exciting. The universe will applaud your reading it as much as it does anything else you do.

Not sure what that was supposed to mean.

*checks watch* How long have I been up?

*stares at Twitter corgi pics*

*notices the setting sun*

Balls.

Anyways. Doing things! Blog posts. Hooray.

I work sevens. To those who don’t know what that means, I work seven ten-hour shifts in a row for seven days off in a row. It’s a nice gig on paper but it requires a bit of priority juggling. All too easily life sweeps into a terrifying seesaw of humdrum drudgery and frantic relaxing and parties if I don’t keep up on it.

Last blog I posted about organizing.

And with that, I’ve been spending the couple hours prior to the drive to work either writing or watching movies I haven’t seen. It’s been fun. Enlightening when you try watching them from a writer’s perspective.

So. Plan time. Each week I’ll try and cover the 1-7 movies I checked out during the work slog. Nothing lengthy, no trademarked rating system, just…impressions? These movies are most likely a few to several dozen years old.

If it doesn’t work, I’ll figure another way.

Aaand.

go.

Starship Troopers: Invasion – Nifty 3D modeling. Only a little bit of the Uncanny Valley. Predictable characterization but the military banter was a hailback to the original Starship Troopers. All in all, good fun. My one hangup, as with most of the Starship spinoffs, is that Johnny Rico, Carmen, and Carl all have to be in the film in some way or another. I don’t mind it, really, but it really downplays the whole massive space scope when the same three people are everywhere.

Dredd – Saw this before. Watched it again. Repeated delight. Despite many people’s discontent with the remake I think it’s the perfect portrayal of a Mega City One slum. Sure it doesn’t involve the Hall of Justice or anything of Dredd’s past. That’s all right though. Here we get a glimpse of the reality and Dredd gets to be a badass. Also, the Slo-mo segments are a kick.

The Last Stand – Arnold Schwarzeneger and Johnny Knoxville in a modern Western. Went in with low expectations. Came out happily wrong. Now stop. It’s a bad movie. Simple plot. Took a while to get going. But once it gets into its groove; once every hope that this little town’s going to get backup from…anything…has been squelched through a lawnmower, the movie takes off and detaches from reality in that fun, excellent, bad movie way.

Solomon Kane – First thought: These costumes are incredible. I really want Kane’s getup. Had a good 1600s grim fantasy feel. Tale of a violent man’s redemption through even more violence, how could that go wrong? One of the things I noticed is that many of the characters with bit parts were portrayed in a clever way as having more backstory than many movies attempt. I got the feeling the Solomon was living his story around other people living theirs. Quickly ended up in my list of HISTORIMYTHIC MOVIES TO WATCH WHILE STARING INTO THE MIDDLE DISTANCE. Though unlike Wild Wild West, Pirates of the Carribean, Three Musketeers, and Django Unchained, it lacked many memorable one-liners.

Sooo…yeah. Four movies. Not too bad. Definitely looked through the action section this last week. We’ll see what next on-week holds.

Anyways. Till next time.

At the very least, thanks for reading.

Well, it’s been a while.

Remember how I said I’d be posting a lot more? Posting snazzy flash fictions from Chuck Wendig’s Terribleminds? Yeah, me too.

Surprise, I haven’t.

But! Hopefully that changes. I’ve been thinking.

Thinking a lot. About a lot.

That’s vague I know but it’d take a week’s worth of blog posts to really cover them all and I’m pretty sure it would all be circuitous and boring to anyone reading it.

But I hit a small slump of depression. No, I don’t think I’m depressed. But a couple other people thought that I was severely depressed and at the time I was feeling pretty down. Had me worried. I’m probably the last one to really know/admit anything like that. And I’m the only one to really solve it (mental quagmires are funny that way). And I talked my way through it thankfully. Put to rest a bunch of worries. Reset a few priorities. Good times.

In the meantime I’ve been reorganizing myself. Getting a handle on my time. I’ve found in recent months I’ve found my time more important than my money…which in the middle of a mundane shift of work tends to easily swing into the extreme THISPLACEISNOTFORMEIDON’TLIKEITHEREBOOOO thought process.

But quitting’s not the answer. Not yet. I’ve got to use the time I have wisely, always. Sure, having a day off is good but I’d rather plan it. Not have it crash in the middle of something, like last night, derailing my projects and thoughts.

What was I talking about? Right. Organizationables.

I’ve been derping around with old sprites. Final Fantasy 1 to be precise. I draw them up on a grid, fill in the squares like a color-by-number, and color in pixels when I keep to my schedule. This ranges from physical activity like walking around the block and posture training to words written per day and writing blog posts (This fills one orange brick on Black Mage’s hat!).

Anyways. Sounds dumb, but much like my novel I found keeping track and color-coding my success kept me on board. If I don’t do ANYTHING to fill in the pixels on any of my little party of sprites I need to write down what I did that day. It had better be good. If I was slacking had it been a while of constant routine? Or did I slack the day before. It’s not a perfect system yet but I’m working out the kinks. Redesigning it each week.

I think it was helping but again it put into contrast just how much my work represents a lack of progress; a lack of creation. I hit an Atlas-heavy weight on my shoulders every time I stepped into the building. And I get to do it tonight again. But I’ve taken some time, written my feelings out, and come to several helpful conclusions as well as some sobering ones.

I’m ranting at this point so I’ll leave you all to your days. Enjoy!

At the very least, thanks for reading.

(And that’s just about 500 words. A blue pixel on Black Mage’s robes! How twee of me.)