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Danny Franks

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  1. I liked a lot of the performances - Ed Burns, Giovanni Ribisi, Barry Pepper, Tom Hanks himself - and the effects and cinematography. The actual story is rather daft, once they make it off Omaha Beach.
  2. War movies often like to play things fast and loose with military discipline, but I'm sure that if a captain tells a private "you're coming with me, I have orders to take you off the line" then the private doesn't get to refuse just because "I want to stay with my buddies." I think the final line from Hanks would have been much better coming from Ed Burns' character, who had just seen his whole unit killed to save Ryan (a guy he wasn't interested in saving in the first place). Hell, you can write a different version of this from that character's point of view, where Captain Miller is a tyrant whose Ahab-like obsession with saving Ryan leads to the deaths of all his men and the rescue of a guy who shows no gratitude or understanding of the lengths they went to to get to him.
  3. The introduction of the Young Avengers - Cassie Lang as Stature among them - was tied to Kang (a teenage version of him came back in time and recruited other teens to fight an adult version of him. Time travel, huh?), so it could be part of the plan to bring in a new generation of heroes. We know that Kate Bishop is supposed to be appearing in the Hawkeye miniseries, and I'm sure Wiccan and Speed will appear in some form in the WandaVision one. The problem for the MCU at the moment is that they've gone so big with Endgame, and run through most of the big villains, that they really don't have many more places to go. Until they reboot the X-Men and the Fantastic Four, they're going to struggle for worthy villains for their heroes to fight. Kang and Annihilus are really the only 'major' bad guys we haven't yet seen on screen. Sinister too, but he's really an X-Men specific bad guy.
  4. We were supposed to like Pratt? He should have been fired on his first day for ignoring a superior doctor's instructions and endangering patients, and he showed absolutely no remorse or contrition. I guess that kind of brash, careless arrogance is appealing to some, but I hated his character. I stopped watching the show when Carter left (and only sporadically watched episodes from the final season he was in) - it wasn't the same show any more - and don't recall Pratt ever getting any better.
  5. If they pass the mantle onto another character, my vote is for Nakia. Because Lupita Nyong'o is amazing and needs to be the headliner of more movies. Her character in the first movie was selfless and driven and devoted to helping people. The mechanism is there for the crown to pass to the champions of other tribes, and I could easily see Shuri flat out saying 'not for me, thanks' while pushing Nakia to take the gig. Nakia, of course, would feel an obligation to continue T'Challa's work and to honour his memory. Added bonus - the man-babies who were crying about a black superhero will freak out even more over a black woman superhero.
  6. There are always people who will see a villain as sympathetic and redeemable because he's handsome and cries a bit when he's upset. Killmonger was a ruthless murderer who bragged about the number of people he'd killed (literally marking his body as proof) and showed no hesitation or regret even when he shot his own girlfriend. Yes, he had a tragic backstory but, as Jake Peralta said, "cool motive, still murder." He's everything that Black Panther should not be, and deserves no redemption arc.
  7. I think Ben's more youthful look was due to his sparse facial hair and angsty-kid haircut. The actor just looked younger made up like that than he did as the ghost version of Ben. It will be interesting to see whether Reginald adopted the same kids but treated them even more harshly because he didn't want them to turn out like the bunch of weirdos he met in 1963, or whether he adopted different kids. He was impressed by Five and Vanya's powers, and you'd think it would be hard for him to pass those up at least.
  8. The problem they have is that Black Panther has been an incredibly important character to a lot of people - an inspirational figure who made people feel more positively about themselves and their identity. The reluctance to recast T'Challa is very understandable, but at some point Disney will have to have a good, long think about whether they want to continue the character or pass the mantle on to someone new. Objectively speaking, there are other actors who could step in and honour Boseman's work, continuing to establish Black Panther and Wakanda as staples in the pantheon of American cinema. I have some names who I think would be worth considering, but I agree that it's not the time to be thinking about that. And hey, if they wanted to just make Nakia or Shuri the next Black Panther, that could work too. But the movie would have a sense of deep sadness about it.
  9. I saw this when I woke up, and genuinely thought I was still dreaming. Awful news, still a young man and he only got married last year. Looking back, his weight loss was noticeable but I figured it was for a role - either slimming down or just dropping the muscle that playing Black Panther required. What a great man, to keep doing Make A Wish visits and comforting sick fans, all while he was fighting illness himself.
  10. That makes a lot of sense, yeah. I think it's safe to say that Vanya wasn't planning to cause the apocalypse. In fact, her main focus was on performing the concert. She was obviously not fully in control of herself, and I figured it was a combination of her powers manifesting fully for the first time and the added on trauma of almost killing Allison, of learning that Leonard had been lying to and manipulating her. So in season two we see that she's much better at controlling and directing her powers because she doesn't have the background of childhood trauma inhibiting her. When she does lose control it's because she's being tortured and being forced to remember her entire life.
  11. I think the show is fairly straightforward in how it presents Vanya - she's an emotionally traumatised, introverted woman who suffered a terrible childhood with a cold, detached father who seemingly never had anything nice to say or ever showed that he cared about her. Same as the others. Difference is, her power levels are significantly higher and she's completely untrained. This season, she forgot all of that trauma and all the impediments that Reginald put on her self-worth and her control of her powers, so it came naturally to her. Not only that, but we saw that her introverted nature was at least partially brought on by feeling like an outcast in her own family. Because we see Vanya in season two and she's happier, more confident and far more outgoing. Is that a realistic depiction of amnesia? Probably not. But not many people get amnesia because they lost control of the world-endingly powerful, soundwave-manipulating abilities on top of the shock of realising their entire life has been a lie, compounded by a gunshot going off inches from their ear. As for not being responsible for the harm she did... to who? Leonard? He deserved death far more than all those mooks we saw Five kill in the first episode of the show. Pogo? He was complicit in the lies that she had been told her entire life. The world? We have no idea what her intentions even were, before the rest of the Academy tried to attack her, and the shock of Allison firing the gun by her head made her lose control. The FBI agents who tortured her until she lost control of her powers again? Or are we still talking about the random nannies from that montage? Kids are capable of casual cruelty that most adults would be shocked by, because they can't understand the consequences of their actions (I would suggest they're even more likely to indulge in it when they've been shown no love by their parents). There's nothing to suggest Vanya knew what she was doing when she lashed out, and the way she lashed out was as natural to her as a toddler kicking and screaming.
  12. So, all in all, I think this season really fixed the family dynamics, and turned the Hargreeves kids into the tight-knit unit that Reginald envisioned them to be. There was some genuine healing done by all of them, particularly Vanya and Klaus (though he's not really showing it). And wow, that shot of Vanya and Diego leaning against one another was so fulfilling. So I guess it's a shame that Reginald now has better versions of them. The Sparrow Academy? Evil, scarred Ben? I bet Luther has a goatee. Man, Reginald is an arsehole. Using Ben's funeral as a joint learning exercise and admonishment of his kids for their failure. How much do I love that Klaus was the first one to go after Vanya, even if he did try to make light of it? And that all the others were right behind him. Vanya genuinely didn't expect it, despite being in the most healthy mental place she's ever been in. The set piece with all the operatives was pretty amazing. Diego covering for Five, then Vanya showing that there honestly might be no limit to her power and just ending it. Then Lila showing that she's a mimic. Makes so much sense, when you think about it - she could teleport when she was around Five, she had heightened agility around Diego, now she's able to reproduce Vanya's powers, then Luther's. And Allison's for good measure. It was pretty obvious that she was one of the special kids, and at least Lila wasn't too stubborn to listen and believe what they told her. Quite the fake-out with the Handler killing them all, then the final Swede turning up. The show did a good job of making me forget all about him. But bringing it back to Reginald's advice to Five about controlling his time travel abilities was cool. Hopefully we see Lila again in season three, and she does get to join the family. Klaus's "who the hell was that guy?" about the Swede was hilarious. With everything that's happened, it's easy to forget that the characters have been relatively isolated from one another's storylines. Finally - I hope the Swede adopts the cult's way of life rather than, y'know, killing them all.
  13. This season has given all of the siblings time to shine, and I like that it's mixed up the groupings quite a bit. Diego, Allison and Klaus trying to stop Vanya was great - Allison's determination to reach her sister, Diego's determination to save the world, Klaus finding his own courage. Then Ben comes through for them because... of course Vanya's powers can't affect him. He's not corporeal. The scene between Vanya and Ben was so good. Ellen Page's distress and self-hatred was palpable. "You aren't a monster, you're my sister" is probably what Vanya has always needed to hear. And for someone to believe in her so wholeheartedly. I actually teared up a bit when Ben asked for a hug, and didn't even get to finish it before Vanya wrapped her arms around him. Luther is a terrible liar but is it me or did it look like they reduced his size in this episode? I haven't noticed it before, but in the scene where he talks to both Fives and tries to deny that one is going to kill the other, he definitely looked more normal. It's crazy how seared into the public consciousness the Kennedy assassination is, because I recognised that panel fence as being the grassy knoll immediately. I absolutely could have done without the Five on Five violence. He's been almost flanderised in the last couple of episodes - angry, irrational, violent nutcase. I suspected from the beginning that Hargreeves wasn't planning to kill Kennedy, but had some other plan in mind. Him being behind the assassination was too easy a story, but him being manipulated and controlled by a secret cabal was much more interesting. So was him removing his face and killing them all. I really want Lila to join the Hargreeves kids, and be a regular next season, but I fear she's going to die nobly, saving Diego. Not mentioned this before - I love Carl's car. Those late-50s, tail fin coupes are gorgeous. My dream car, ever since I was a kid, was a '57 Ford Thunderbird.
  14. Okay, so Vanya caused the apocalypse again. Well... stick with what you're good at, I guess. But I don't buy the idea that Kennedy would have declared war on the Soviet Union over that. Not when he put so much on the line to avoid war just a year earlier, in the Cuban Missile Crisis. By this time, he and Khrushchev had established a hotline that enabled them to talk to one another to dea-escalate a crisis like this. It just seems like a wrongheaded, naive take on the Cold War at that time. Vanya's drug trip reminded me of the absolute worst parts of playing the Far Cry games. I fucking hate all the trippy, 'ooh, this is so weird, isn't it cool?' imagery that always gets used for things like this. I didn't like the song that was used, either. "Oh, it's gonna be one of those kinda nights. So... are we burning or burying?" Klaus is the best wingman... when he's sober. How did Lila think Diego was ever going to do what she wanted? Seems like her over-confidence in her own abilities, and her own appeal, are as bad as her mother's. I like that Herb got to actually do something. He's funny. This was a very Five-heavy episode, and while I like him I'm not as enamoured as most people seem to be. Some of Aidan Gallagher's acting choices grate on me, and his twitchiness throughout this episode was irritating. I was very pleasantly relieved that the 'other Five' he was meeting was actually his old self. Not sure I could have done with Aidan playing off himself for a whole scene. I did enjoy Luther playing his dozy sidekick, though. The poor guy really is out of his depth, with this stuff.
  15. I went to 1917 being dubious about whether I'd like it - I was desperate to see a good First World War movie, but the single, continuous shot structure seemed like a gimmick that would annoy me. But I loved it. I felt like it created an immediacy and tension that a traditional movie structure would have lacked. And I didn't care that there were hidden camera cuts, because there's no possible way to actually film a movie as a single, unbroken shot.
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