Saturday, May 6

Cruising for Bruising

Last night, I got to watch Mission Impossible III on the way home after a hard week of work. What I got was a pleasantly entertaining, action-packed and romance-laden romp care of Tom "Ethan Hunt" Cruise and director J.J. "Alias" Abrams.
It's been several years after the end of the last MI film, and maverick IMF agent Ethan Hunt has largely retired from active duty, working now mostly behind a desk to train the next crop of spies. Moreover, he's gotten a winsome fiancee named Julia (Michelle Monaghan) who's madly in love with him. Unfortunately, Ethan's plans for martial bliss and a happy home life are disturbed when a colleague (Billy Crudup) comes to him with alarming news; one of their agents, played by Keri Russell, has been captured while investigating the activities of an infamous black market dealer, Owen Davian (Oscar winner Philip Seymour Hoffman). Since Ethan trained the missing agent himself, he can't help but go active once more to get her out. What happens next is a series of snowballing events as Ethan's hidden life soon begins to endanger his future and, in particular, the woman he wishes to share it with.

I've read in an article that MI3 is, in many ways, a remake of True Lies (that classic spy action comedy with Ah-nuld and Jamie Lee Curtis). And it's true- MI3 has the super spy, the ignorant love interest and a vile villain ready to spoil everything. However, MI3 seems more focused on the people, rather than the crisis, which makes it probably the most personal battle Ethan Hunt has faced. Like in most of JJ Abram's spy flicks (including his Alias series), the thing in the case, the McGuffin being chased after, really isn't the point. It's about the spies and what they go through to get it. That said, MI3 is still full to the brim with gunfights, car stunts, chases, suspenseful heists and high-level intrigue which viewers have come to expect from the series.

Tom Cruise is once again in top form as Ethan Hunt- he's a bit older and domesticated now, instead of the invincible super agent with the mad motorcycling skillz and the taste for suicidal mountaineering he had in part two. Still, he's got that hero thing down pat and that makes for great, enjoyable action. Back as well is the only other MI fixture, Ving Rhames as Hunt's right hand Luther Stickel. Stickel isn't as talkative or as comedic as Tom Arnold was in True Lies, but he provides the laughs just the same.
Debuting as new IMF agents in MI3 are dynamite-looking Hong Kong superstar Maggie Q and Jonathan Rhys Meyers as a femme fatale and a man of a dozen faces, respectively. They don't get that much screen time, but you like them instantly so that's great. Also new to MI3 is the Man, Morpheus himself, Laurence Fishburne as IMF Commander Brassel, and Shaun of the Dead's Simon Pegg as Benji, IMF's answer to Q.

As for MI3's trailer-boy Owen Davian, yeah, he's a despicable villain, and having Philip Seymour Hoffman's genial, soft looks (I really see him like an older, more respectable Jack Black) works. Unfortunately, his best scene really IS that exact scene where he gives the threat about hurting Hunt's wife or girlfriend... and we've all seen it already. There sadly isn't enough of him as there was of baddies in previous MI films. Oh well, he's good while he's there.

On the whole, MI3 is a thrill ride- from the intriguing and unusual opening to the tons of action-packed sequences that pepper the film throughout, this is a great popcorn movie if I ever saw one... certainly the best in the trilogy, in my opinion. Great action and drama, humor and Tom Cruise doing his thing. Worst part of it? That I saw a big plot twist a MILE away. Oh well. At least, there are no overdramatic uses of doves. Heh.

Mission IMpossible III is now showing in Manila theaters. Watch it!

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PLDT Sucks: The Finale

Okay, the DSL guys FINALLY arrived and installed the stuff.

I tried it, and darn, it's fast... a lot faster than dial-up.

I have DSL!!! FINALLY!!!

But... as of right now, I'm typing this with a dial-up connection.

That's cause... the PLDT server seems to have gone down...

Oh well.

At least I have DSL... just not right now...

Crisis ends, War begins

This week in comics, DC's Infinite Crisis finally came to an end, while on the other side of the gutter, Marvel kicked off it's own universe-shaking event, Civil War.
I thoroughly enjoyed DC's renovation, though I have to admit that I wasn't as attached or emotionally into the characters as much as I was in the original Crisis on Infinite Earths. IC was a pretty awesome ride, but I did feel that the ending was a bit rushed; certainly while they did hype up Alex Luthor and Superboy Prime as huge villains, my opinion is that the original universe-killing baddie The Anti-Monitor still rules as the despicable villain to end all villains. Still, great stuff, and it's gotten me curious about 52.

As for Civil War, I'm intrigued at the story and the art is simply incredible. My only gripe is that they had to sacrifice the New Warriors to kick off the event, which sucks. The Warriors were hardly new anymore, and after 60+ issues of their own series back in the nineties, this shouldn NOT have happened to them. Darn it. I'm gonna miss Namorita... it always saddens me when super-powered bikini babes get killed off. But then again this is Marvel. No one really stays dead...

Thursday, May 4


On the other hand, I really enjoyed the new Superman Returns trailer. I have to admit I'm not the biggest fan of the Man of Steel. I liked him years ago, but really lost touch of him during the whole 'Death of Superman' thing. I doubly don't like him recently due to all the stuff that's been happening to him- getting controlled by Max Lord, becoming a government go-fer, etcetera, etcetera. I especially didn't like the squeaky clean caped boy scout from the movies.
However, the new movie, thanks to the trailer, has gotten me excited. The film looks cool, and it looks like a lot of real actiont his time, as opposed to the boring disaster movie the first one was, the ultimately corny but still the best of the lot 2nd movie, and the horrible sequels later.

I'm certainly intrigued at Kevin Spacey's performance as Lex Luthor; hopefully it will be unique from Gene Hackman's wheeler-dealer in the old movies. He seems to be a mix of genius, megalomaniac and psycho, which is cool... hey, who better to play Luthor than Keyser Soze? WOOHOO!!!

Superman Returns flies in this Summer. Keep your eyes on the sky till then.

Wednesday, May 3

Oh-oh Seven

Just saw the teaser trailer for Casino Royale, the latest James Bond flick with the latest Bond, Daniel Craig.

The action looks good. The Bond girl looks hot.

But darn. I have to say that Craig just doesn't look like James Bond. I've been quite vocal about giving the guy a chance, and I will indeed watch the film once it comes out... but darn... he just looks more like a villain than a Bond. Or he looks kinda old to be playing a younger Bond.

What the heck. He's there already. Let's hope it works. Or we could have another George Lazenby on our hands. Oh well.

Tuesday, May 2

Tekken 6

... is gonna debut at this year's May E3 Expo for the PS3. The first trace of the next chapter in the Iron Fist Tournament was first revealed months ago, via a short (make that very short) video of a super-detailed and hyper-realistic Jin Kazama getting ready for combat. Now, that could have been just CG, so just how the actual game will look like and what new stuff will be in store aside from nosehair-detailed character models should be revealed very soon.
With Tekken 6 confirmed to be a PS3 game and the lovely Virtua Fighter 5 also rumoured to be on Sony's uber-system, it seems pretty destined that I'll be getting one... the console arrives hopefully this November. Gotta start saving then.

Monday, May 1

New Toy

Okay, it’s not really a toy, but that didn’t make me feel any less like a kid when I got my new digital camera yesterday. I finally decided on the Canon Digital Ixus 60 (which coincidentally is being reviewed in the latest T3 magazine). The Ixus 60’s a 6 megapixel mighty mite with a ton of features that can make photography as simple or as complex as you want. It’s also smaller than most cellphones, which makes it pretty easy to bring around anywhere. I’ve already started snapping away pics and it’s quite an amazing gadget. Well, amazing to someone who’s been used to low quality photos from cellphone cameras all this time.

In any case, I’m thoroughly enjoying my new device… and I should since it cost me quite a bit (gonna have to eat crackers and luke water for a while… heheh). At the very least, from now on, you can all expect sharper, nicer pics on the blog and the phlog from now on. WOOHOO!
Fabulous Buffy Boys

I love spooky stuff, so it was natural for me to be excited about the new series Supernatural on AXN. It’s a creepy adventure series which pits two brothers against the world of sinister urban legends and occult monsters. I’m so interested in it, I actually couldn’t wait for the series to premiere on cable- I’ve already gotten myself dvds of the first season. Anyway, the pilot episode was pretty cool, and has succeeded in getting me stoked for the rest of the series.
It’s a little bit of Buffy the Vampire Slayer (the guys actually make it their point to fight the creatures they come across) minus an over-reliance on martial arts and magic, a whole lot of X-Files, a little bit Kolchak the Nightstalker and dashes of road movie/family drama. And since the series is directed by McG, the man behind the Charlie’s Angels movies, there’s quite a bit of the director’s trademark zippy camera trickery which actually suit the look and feel of the series quite well. The show has a great sense of spookery which I find quite good.

Supernatural’s overall plot aside from the Monster/Myth-of-the-week is the brothers’ search for their missing father, and perhaps closure and revenge on the so far unknown force that caused a tragedy in the family many years ago.

Supernatural stars Jared Padalecki and Jensen Ackles. The series is set to debut this week on Thursdays at 10pm on AXN. Watch it with the lights off for the most fun. Heh.
The Sentinel

No, this isn't a review of the Michael Douglas action-thriller that's showing right now in theaters. I'm talking a different kind of sentinel. You know... the kind comic fans know. Big, purple, mutant-hunting robots. Remember how we all wished there were sentinels in the past X-men movies? Well, there weren't before but that has apparently changed. Apparently, there will be big robot enemies in the upcoming X3: The Last Stand.

Yeah, this is probably a bit of a spoiler thing, but hey- teaser footage has appeared in earlier trailers for the movie (where did you think those lazer bolts were coming from?), and it just seems to be natural that the government would turn to the Sentinels to strike at Magneto's new Brotherhood Army. And heck- Hugh Jackman already spilled the beans on a recent episode of the Tonight Show with Jay Leno, so what the heck. They showed a clip with Wolvering (Jackman) doing the famous "Fastball Special" with Colossus to attack an oncoming, gigantic attacker. No, we don't actually see much of the Sentinel- just a silhouette of a giant figure with headlights for eyes. Wolvering flies up, and something- a severed giant robot head- comes crashing down.
Yeah, the scene is cool in a way, but also seems a bit of a cop-out that screams LOW BUDGET! On the other hand, it's probably just a teaser for real scenes showing off the big mechanical mutant hunters which seem to be part of the third X-men film's climactic final battle.

Well, anyway, it just gets me a little bit more excited for this already controversial film- controversial in that it has many fans of the comics and previous films already condemning it long before opening day. Well, I'm willing to give it a good ol' college try. Who knows, it might actually be the best one.

X3 is set to make it's last stand this May.

Sunday, April 30


Lately I've been hankering to get another gadget. No, it's not another gaming console... the PS3's not due out until the end of the year, and I'm still not totally sold on the PSP. I'm not thinking about getting a new mobile phone, either... while I do love the designs of the lastest Sony Ericsson mobiles and stuff from Nokia, they still can't tear me away from the multi-faceted loveliness of my O2 Mini. However, the new multi-megapixel phones have gotten me interested in a camera.
Yeah, the latest mobile phones are sporting 2 megapixel snappers up... there are even new cellphones with 3 or more megapixels coming very soon. It has just gotten me totally conscious of the fact that my Mini's own 1.3 Megapixel cam is woefully bad. Yeah, it's adequate for the occasional video or snap- but in low light, it's pretty useless, and the pics just aren't as sharp or detailed as I would like. Great for blogging and stuff, but if you need the pictures to be worth anything more, the cam just won't cut it.
To be honest, my brother did leave me with a nice digital camera- it's a 2-megapixel snapper which unfortunately is slightly damaged so fixing up the settings is a bit iffy... and it's a bit bulky, so it's not something I can carry around without a bag.

And so, I am thinking of getting a proper, pocketable digicam. Something small and compact but packing the power to make hi-res pics. I've already more or less gotten an idea of what I may be getting- something from Canon, perhaps the Digital Ixus series- and I'll probably be going off to look at my options tomorrow or so.

Which is good since there may be an occasion or two where a nice camera may be of great use, very soon. We'll see. My hands are itching already.