Wednesday, December 30, 2015

CBS/Paramount Sues Star Trek Fans #Axanar

I'll be brief.

Star Trek Axanar is a fan made and funded Star Trek movie, starring Richard Hatch. (Battlestar Galactica) Paramount and CBS are suing the project for copyright infringement, which happens to coincide with the release of a new Trek series, and the upcoming movie, Star Trek: Beyond. 

Those are the facts.

Now, this is what I have to say to CBS and Paramount:

You people killed off Enterprise when it was getting really good. The Next Generation movies were mostly crap, and the 3 new movies (Star Trek, Into Darkness and Beyond) are garbage in the purest sense of the term. 

Star Trek has been dead for a very long time, and the fans aren't impressed with what JJ Abrams has done unless its Star Wars. Why in the hell would you sue people who are trying to make a good product? Are you worried that a fan created movie would make you idiots look bad? You're doing a good enough job of that on your own. Are you worried about competition? You know that Trek fans buy everything that comes out, so what's the problem? Do you think that they would see Axanar and skip Beyond? They should because the previews for Beyond make it look REALLY bad, but they won't. Many people have seen every single Trek film in the theater and are going to continue the tradition, just like Star Wars. So, since I've alleviated your concerns, the only one that remains is that you're worried about DVD and Blu Ray sales, and downloads. Here's a suggestion: Stop making garbage Star Trek! 

I don't buy the copyright infringement angle. Are you going to sue everyone who has done a Fan Fic? What about the people who recreated The Original Series with different actors? Why is their project any different than Axanar

You don't need this negative press. Suing fans? That's a dick move. It was the FANS that kept Trek alive for 50 years, not you people. And you never listened to them. Instead of suing them, how about you hire them and throw the unlimited budgets that you have into Axanar and make it an incredible film?

You people are amazing. Rather than making something good, you'd rather crush something good. Its pathetic. Drop the lawsuit and either back the people making the movie or leave them alone. The fans are sick of the crap you've been dishing out.

I'm just one small time blogger, but I think I am speaking for an overwhelming majority of Star Trek fans. I hope you do the right thing. And I hope someone in your organizations reads this.

Oh, and I wrote a fan fic years ago. Just an admission of guilt for your inevitable class action lawsuit against all Trek fans. And, in honor of Lemmy Killmister of Motorhead  (RIP) Here's a pic of him flicking you guys off.
This is for you, CBS
and Paramount!

#IStandWithAxanar #Axanar 

Geriatric Album Review: Geezer!

Holy Ebenezer!
I'm jamming to Geezer!

I've been very much anticipating doing this review. My new favorite band, Geezer has finally released their debut CD, and it delivers much more than arthritis pain medication. Although I could use some because of all the headbanging I did while listening to this CD. I'm well on my way to becoming a geezer myself. I've already written about them two times. That's how much I like them!

The CD starts off with the geriatric rock and roll anthem, Geezer Nation, chanting the line 'Let's get excited!" That got my head bobbing, as I realized that it is in fact a geezer nation. This blowout hit is sure to be a crowd pleaser. Its catchy, and energetic and easy to remember. I could see a whole sea of kids chanting along with them. And that's the thing. This music isn't written to play in a smoky bar of people from age 35 and up. Its targeted to kids, but the older people dig it too, which is a plus!

Track 2 is Let's Go To The Beach. Probably a popular favorite in their retirement home on Miami Beach! Its another fun groove that will make you want to dance. (You, not me. I don't dance.) Although my six year old daughter was having a blast dancing to this one. Teenage Tragedy is a funny bit of irony. It speaks about mommy and daddy not loving you, but its coming from your grandfather! The song is on the album twice, once as its normal version, and second time, an acoustic version, or "Super Teen Remix."

There are several things that definitely stand out on this album. One thing is the enormous guitar sound. It sounds like it comes from a wall of Marshalls. I haven't heard that big of a guitar sound since...well, ever! I want to ask guitarist, Leonard Geezer what kind of rig he uses to get that incredible sound, but he doesn't hear too well, as I have found out in the past. And, when I saw them live, I couldn't get close to the stage to get a look because it was standing room only in front of the stage. 

Speaking of Leonard, I've mentioned before that he is an elite guitarist. The solos on this album are shred-tacular, and in the song Silly Putty Buddy, the solo is done in 4 breaks. I imagined singer, Harvey Geezer trying to hand Leonard an egg of Silly Putty and Leonard swatting his hand away during the breaks, then getting back to the solo. 

Another thing that stands out is the backup vocals by Sarah Jean Balarezo. She harmonizes well, and it accents the raspy vocals of Harvey.

The most powerful song on the album is Bad Luck, which Geezer seems to have none of. Its a heavy jam that is more metal influenced than anything else on the album. The rhythm section here is top notch. Calvin Sizemore and Victor Farnsworth are as tight and powerful as anything out there. 

Leonard, Harvey, Victor, Calvin
To say the band is talented is an understatement. I am in awe that they have only been playing for 2 years. I figure if they can get that good that quickly both on an individual basis and as a band, then anybody can do anything if they want it bad enough, and are willing to work at it. 

This album is a must have. You owe it to yourself to pick up a copy, and to crank it loud. I imagine that as the crowds get bigger, they will find themselves as headliners in no time. As long as they take their meds and naps, nothing will be able to stop them...unless they fall asleep Down by the Lazy River.

Hell...Their golden years rock more than my prime!

Thursday, December 10, 2015

Movie Review: Creed

"One step at a time. 
One punch at a time. 
One round at a time."

We were all wondering what exactly the Creed movie, starring Michael B Jordan as Adonis Creed would have in store for us. After the great movie, Rocky Balboa, many fans were wondering whether Stallone and company should have left well enough alone, or whether they could strike gold a second time. 

Some called this movie a reboot, some called it a sequel. Actually, it was both. A reboot in the sense that the main character from the previous films was a costar rather than the main character. A sequel in that it continued the storyline rather than starting it over again and retelling it. It expanded Rocky's story and took it in new directions while staying true to what made these films the best sports movie franchise of all time.

Most people, myself included were optimistic. However some were worried because Stallone didn't write or direct this film. Rising star director, Ryan Coogler did. The story features Adonis Creed, son of the legendary boxer, Apollo Creed. He wants to follow in his father's footsteps, even though Apollo's untimely demise happens before he is born. Although, he wants to box, he wants to become a fighter on his own merit, so he doesn't use his last name. He also had issues resulting from growing up without a father. So, he ultimately winds up in Philadelphia, seeking out Rocky Balboa for training. Rocky at first is hesitant to train Creed, but he ultimately decides to do it. Creed through a twist of fate winds up with a championship match with the champion of the world. The stipulation? He needs to change his name to Creed, which he eventually decides to do. (Sound familiar?) While it may sound familiar, it was done well, and didn't come off as rehash. That's because it wasn't.

Adonis Creed was good on his own
But wanted to be better, which
is why he seeks out Rocky

The movie does follow the template that was successful for Rocky in the past, but that is a good thing. This movie could have been a disaster if one single little thing had been done wrong. However, everything...and I mean everything was done spot on perfectly. 

As I watched it, I was thinking to myself that this movie should have been Rocky 5. But, I'm glad it wasn't because if it had, we wouldn't have had the character and story development that came to be in Rocky Balboa. Creed really expands on that story of Rocky as a punchy and brain damaged former champion who has lost just about everything. You see Rocky and Creed's relationship grow, and you realize that while Rocky is helping Creed, Creed is also helping Rocky. And even though Rocky is more like a Yoda type mentor than a fighter, he still winds up in a major fight, which is what Creed is helping him with. The relationships are done beautifully in this movie.

You see this guy here? That's the toughest opponent
you're ever going to have to face. I believe that's true in the ring,
and I think that's true in life. Now show me something
Creed, like its predecessor, Rocky Balboa is extremely well done, like I said before. Its one of the top films in the franchise. Better than 2,3, and of course 5. Its also better than Rocky Balboa, and it may even be better than 4. My main issue with 4 is that they over sensationalized everything. But, it was the 80's, so its okay. Nothing seems forced, and the lines are well rehearsed and delivered. Even the opponent's names are good. Let's face it, Stallone wasn't the best at naming the opponents in the films...A black man named Mason 'The Line' Dixon? Even in The Expendables 2. Villain? I rest my case. The antagonist's name in this movie is  'Pretty' Ricky Conlan. He is the world champion, and is from The United Kingdom. Like I said, something happens that gives Creed his shot. 

Creed and Conlan in the ring.
Conlan is played by Tony Bellew

Of course, there are side stories. For example, Creed has a love interest. A local aspiring singer, Bianca played by Tessa Thompson. She has issues of her own, and is a perfect partner for Creed. Also, we see Mary Anne Creed, Apollo's wife, played by Phylicia Rashad. She plays a prominent role in Adonis's upbringing, although its not what you might expect. All the characters in this film have their own demons that they are having to deal with. 

Creed and Bianca after the first match
On top of that, there are some new characters who are linked to original characters that you need to pay attention and keep an eye out for. And while nothing is force fed to you just for the sake of name dropping, its still really cool to see some of these people. 

Creed is a must see for every Rocky fan. It fits perfectly in with the rest of the franchise, and the entire movie tugs at your heart strings. At the end of the film, you want more. And, the weight of the emotions that run high throughout, it might feel like you got hit by Adonis Creed. This was the best movie I've seen in years, and I'll likely see it again before it comes out on DVD. It really fires on all cylinders. Sequels can sometimes get sidetracked, especially when its a film with a new director, and if it wasn't a story that was written to be a sequel, IE Star Wars, LOTR, Harry Potter, etc. If you didn't know any better, you'd swear this was written back in the 70's along with the original story.

So, if I gave stars, I would give this movie a perfect 5 of 5. I loved it and you will too. Go see it! Now!

Oh, by the way...
We find out who won this fight.