So, yeah. It’s been a bit of a while since I’ve updated the blog. But that’s nothing unusual for me, I suppose. After I dropped out of college, I moved in with my fiancee, and we don’t have internet except for going downtown and sitting outside next to the courthouse and mooching off of the wifi there. So I don’t really get online that much, and when I do, I try to make it for something more important. But I guess I’ve been neglecting this blog, as well as my game design and programming habits. It’s all just sort of gone down the toilet, so to speak.
However, I have seen quite a few movies and played a few games since my last post, so I suppose I should give an update on them. Or at least on a few of the ones that I haven’t reviewed.
I guess if I would’ve researched this movie somewhat more I wouldn’t have gone to see it at all. With a 56 on Rotten Tomatoes, I wouldn’t have gone to see the movie normally. But I was hooked in by the trailer and, on a whim, decided to go see it without checking online about the movie or the director’s history of not so excellence.
I suppose it may be too much to expect anything special by the director who re-made…
Holy crap! A rooster just jumped up on the hood of my car!
Anyways… where was I? Oh yeah, I suppose I shouldn’t expect much from a director who remade a 1953 Horror film, which itself was a remake of a 1933 Mystery film, originally based on a short story called The Wax Works, as a horror film House of Wax in 2005. But of course, I have never seen House of Wax, so I expected something special from Orphan.
The movie’s premise is certainly interesting enough. A family who has recently lost a child due to miscarriage is looking to adopt. So they go to a local orphanage, where they are quickly drawn to a young girl named Agatha, who seems to act quite maturely for her age. Then of course, after they bring the girl home, things slowly seem wierder and wierder. Of course, Agatha appears nice to the parents, but to everyone else, she acts like a psychotic sociopath.
This in and of itself, could’ve been a good movie. Had the story went to a conclusion with a reasonable twist, or no twist at all, I would’ve left the theater satisfied. After all, the movie had superb cinematography, with many clever and quite beautiful shots. The storytelling was quite inventive, especially a scene in which the mother tells a story to her near-deaf daughter. During this scene, the daughter takes out her hearing-aids, and the film is silent except for music. All of the storytelling her mother does is through sign language, and is shown as subtitles on the bottom of the screen. Now, I’m nearly certain that this was probably inspired by some other movie that I have not seen. And the director may have counted on this. But either way, it was a nice touch.
But the movie immediately loses credibility after the third act twist, which if you do not want spoiled, I would advise you not read the following section.
During this end scene, after driving away her adoptive mother, she dresses herself up, gets her father drunk and attempts to seduce him. This is, of course, rather uncomfortable to watch, and also makes very little sense. This is intended to get your mind whirring about the twist. And just after you’ve figured it out, the movie tells it to you. Which is of course, ideal for a good twist. But this is not a good twist. This twist is just ridiculous. According to a foreign mental hospital where Agatha had been staying before coming to the United States, she has a condition known as hypopituitarism, and is actually 30-something, despite the appearance of being a 12-year old. So it is apparently her built-up anger about being treated like a child her whole life which has led her to attempt to seduce older looking men.
What. the. Hell?
I mean, the idea seems to make sense at first glance. But if she is so upset about people thinking that she is a child, then why is she dressing like a child, and putting on make-up to make herself look younger, and staying at a god-damn orphanage!?? This is just bizzare. And dumb. Bizzare and dumb as hell.
The rest of the movie is just a typical run-for-your-life thing which ultimately ends in the death of Agatha due to being kicked in the face by her adoptive mother.
Thank god there won’t be a sequel.
Overall Rating: 6/10
At least the cinematography was good. There were a few clever acting moments as well. But the movie just sinks on it’s terrible twist, which was the brunt force of the marketing campaign anyways.
Now this was a game that interested me originally when I played a demo of it on my computer back when it came out. But I didn’t have the money to buy it at the time, so it just sort of went away and I forgot about it in the wave of hype for the next generation of consoles.
Until I found it a Gamestop for like nine dollars.
So, I bought the game hastily, hoping to finally enjoy the rest of this promising adventure game.
And the game was quite promising, despite some honestly awkward voice acting by the main characters. Up until about two-thirds of the way through the game, it was still interesting. There was a wierd mystery unfolding about why Lucas Kane had involuntarily stabbed a man to death in the bathroom at a downtown diner. The story was subtle, and the characters were developing slowly and realisticly.
Yeah, there’s some spoiliers that follow, but I really wouldn’t worry about it.
Then the end of the game comes. First, Lucas Kane re-hooks up with his ex-girlfriend. Not a bad thing in and of itself, however his girlfriend is immediately kidnapped by the trademark “spooky bad guy in a cloak”. He has a vision of his girlfriend falling to her death at the old run down theme park thing. So he goes there and follows a raven or crow or something until he realizes he must climb up to the top of a roller coaster to reach his girlfriend. So he goes up there, and just when he is about to reach his girl, the spooky cloaked guy destroys the roller coaster and Lucas Kane falls with his girlfriend to their presumable deaths.
Now, it would have been fine by me if Lucas Kane died, he wasn’t a particularly interesting character. Plus the game has you playing scenes as the two cops in pursuit of him, so he’s really only 1/3 of the game. The game could’ve ended quite well without the mystery even being solved. Not every thread has to be tied up for a story to be completed.
But of course David whatever-hell-his-name-is-director-of-this-crappy-video-game-story has other ideas entirely. Instead of leaving the story in sane territory. He decides that Lucas Kane will still be alive in a sort of zombified wierd half-dead sort of state.
At this point, the world in the game is getting colder and colder every day, and the temperature drops, hence the name of the European released version of the game, “Fahrenheit”. (However, they changed the name for the US release to avoid confusion with the recently released Fahrenheit 9/11 by Michael Moore)
The story just goes downhill farther and further as the game continues. Rather than leave some things a mystery, David-whatever tries to tie everything up with this BS story about 3 secret societies who Illuminati-esque rule the world. (One of these societies happens to be made entirely of energy robots, by the way.)
So, the old lady in the wheelchair (who was creepy already with her crazy house and crows in cages, but the game forced you to trust her despite your inhibitions, and who had died earlier in the game to boot) reappears after the death/resurrection of Lucas Kane. But then we find out that she’s actually a robot, and she wants to kill you. Then Lucas Kane and the robot fly around Matrix Revolutions-style while you play a game of simon says with the two analog sticks.
Well, I’ll just leave it at that. Needless to say, the game does not disappoint in its stupidity towards the end.
Oh, well, I suppose I should add one more thing. The female cop who was pursuing Lucas Kane through the whole game, suddenly falls in love with him shortly after meeting him in his quasi-dead state. Oh, and they have sex. Oh, and she has his baby at the end of the game. Even though HES FREAKING DEAD ALREADY!!!!
And it only gets that one point because the game didn’t have any glitches preventing me from completing it.
Well, hopefully I’ll be back soon with a review of the new Prince of Persia game, and maybe some other stuff.