Wednesday, May 04, 2016

Catching Up 5/4/2016

Hey! Did you notice I've been a little quiet on this website the last few weeks? Well, it's because big things* have been in the works. Two of which can now be read up on ScreenRant:

Sure, you've probably read through the "which order to watch the Marvel Movies in" lists, and you've probably done your refresher-course work to get ready for CIVIL WAR (review forthcoming, incidentally) - but have you ever wanted to be able to look at a chronological breakdown of every event depicted in the MCU movies starting with the beginning of the Universe (as in The Big Bang) right up to this very week, including the events of the Netflix series and AGENTS OF S.H.I.EL.D.? Well, now you can. The (tentative) plan is to update it as new information becomes available, so bookmark it now if you want to - either way, enjoy!

Exactly what it says on the label. Sometimes work is hard, sometimes work is hard but you're getting paid to explain how Comet The Superhorse works.

*Yes, the long-awaited REALLY THAT GOOD: SUPERMAN is in fact one of those big things. It's on the way, and I thank you for your patience. As ever, both speeding me up and keeping me afloat period are functions of The MovieBob Patreon :)

Wednesday, April 27, 2016

Here We Go Again...

The screencap, in case this was an early trigger-pull and they take it down:

Thursday, April 21, 2016

TV RECAP: Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. Season 3 - Episode 17: "The Team"

"The Team" has been teased as "the one you've been waiting for," since it's plot supposedly involves finally giving the Secret Warriors (i.e. Daisy and the handful of good-guy Inhumans we've met so far this season) a full-fledged mission; in this case to rescue the rest of the cast from being held captive by Hive and Giyera. The sequence where this actually happens is pretty impressive, with the standout business being the chemistry between Yoyo and Joey, even if it does serve to highlight that giving AGENTS OF S.H.I.E.L.D its own mini-Avengers to play with only highlights how much of an also-ran the series feels like in its lesser moments.

But whatever, it's actually a tiny part of the episode, is over quickly and the entire Secret Warriors storyline more or less goes "That's it, next thing!" by midpoint. Gotcha!

Thursday, April 14, 2016

TV RECAP: Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. Season 3 - Episode 16: "Paradise Lost"

This recap made possible through donations to The MovieBob Patreon.

In the wake of some much needed diversion from formula in last week's offbeat future-seeing episode, "Paradise Lost" gets us back to AGENTS OF S.H.I.E.L.D. Classic Recipe: a lot of low-tech-playing-high-tech diversions with the promise of later payoffs, capped off by a last-minute swerve and (for good measure) someone slamming their fist on the big red button marked Major Plot Point with enough flourish to almost make it feel like an earned moment as opposed to "Hey! The writers have just been informed of how CIVIL WAR shakes out."

Spoilers after the jump...

Thursday, April 07, 2016

Review: HARDCORE HENRY (2016)

This review is made possible by donations to The MovieBob Patreon. If you like what you see and would like to see more, please consider becoming a Patron.

HARDCORE HENRY is the sort of gleefully violent sensory-assault moviemaking that critics sometimes like to say feels "made by a madman," but in overall execution it's just a hair too deliberately-structured and well made for that to be a fair assessment. All told, the film is much closer to a (slightly) more polished version of a student film handed in by the class troublemaker; a show-off reel of every wicked, dangerous, inventive, perverse creative impulse they've got all in one go-for-broke splatter of imagination - as though they can't believe someone finally let them play with the camera and they know it has to count because they'll never be allowed to play with it again.

The results of such work are often tiresome, but at their best they offer a window into a unique, unrestrained vision. Like a lot of present-day art-school anarchists, director Ilya Naishuller's vision is one thoroughly cluttered with the influence of YouTube parkour and the video-game aesthetic; but also one with an awareness (however nascent) of those influences beyond mere imitation.

MILD SPOILERS from here onward:

TV Recap: Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. Season 3 - Episode 15: Spacetime

This recap and others like it are possible through support from The MovieBob Patreon. If you like what you see, please consider becoming a Patron.

Another week, another "just fine" Season 3 episode that makes for a good watch but continues to feel like we're running out of time to arrive somewhere more interesting by the finale, with the broader Inhumans storyline once again being waylaid for a chance at using the surprise-superpower gimmick as a way to get back into the monster of the week business that made so much of Season 1 so tiresome. Still, the idea this time is a novel one and the episode itself has some above-average direction, so call it a win.


Wednesday, April 06, 2016

The MovieBob Anthology: Now Available on KINDLE!

Hey folks! BIG NEWS!

The MovieBob Anthology, the eBook series collecting the best of my work writing about film, video games, television and pop-culture over the last decade, is now available for purchase on your Amazon Kindle! Here's a search-query that brings up the lot of them, hit the jump for individual links.

Friday, April 01, 2016

TV RECAP: Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. Season 3 Episodes 13 & 14 ("Parting Shot" & "Watchdogs")

AGENTS OF S.H.I.E.L.D's third season has felt the most disconnected from the broader Marvel Cinematic Universe. Not necessarily because it's had fewer tie-ins (it's about even with usual, so far) but because the series has doubled-down so much on its own mythology (the Inhumans, HYDRA's "secret origins," Maveth/Hive) that it's largely traded in its previously-ubiquitous references to the bigger events being depicted in the MCU films for references to bigger events that aren't being depicted anywhere - which leaves things feeling a touch on the awkward side.

Case in point, the last two episodes have been all about the supposedly global-scale panic being caused by the continuing emergence of new Inhumans; which we're assured is happening largely through news reports and regular cast members talking about it - some of which is cleverly staged but most of which has had the effect of making it seem like the series is rushing to establish that "No, really, it's suddenly a really big problem" in order to hit a crossover-point with CIVIL WAR.


Sunday, March 27, 2016

Friday, March 25, 2016


Hey hey! It's Easter Weekend, so... go do what you do during that particular period, I guess. Have you hit up The MovieBob Patreon lately? Because that would be lovely :)

In any case, here's a few quick updates on this end:

The MovieBob Anthology ebooks are now available for Nook users, so if that's your format of choice and you don't have them yet, now's your chance.

I've published my first "listical" for ScreenRant: "The 9 Biggest 'WTF?' Moments of Batman V Superman." Please enjoy.

Wednesday, March 23, 2016

Review: BATMAN V SUPERMAN: DAWN OF JUSTICE (Major Spoilers!!!)

This review is possible through donations to The MovieBob Patreon. If you like what you see, please consider becoming a Patron.

Transcript Below:

Sunday, March 20, 2016


This review made possible through donations to The MovieBob Patreon. If you'd like to see/read/hear more, please consider becoming a patron.

SPOILERS after the jump (and in the video):

Thursday, March 17, 2016

TV Recap: AGENTS OF S.H.I.E.L.D - Season 3 Episode 12: "THE INSIDE MAN"

Yes, I skipped over the first midseason-comeback episode.

I watched it, but somehow couldn't summon the urge to say much consequential about it (plus, last week was kind of rough here, so... yeah) other than "I also wonder who that is in the bloody spaceship" and to note that making Talbot the public-face of ATCU-but-actually-S.H.I.E.L.D. is cute foreshadowing for the seemingly-inevitable CIVIL WAR crossover, i.e. even if what's going on with the Inhumans on AGENTS OF S.H.I.E.L.D. and the really similar stuff going on with superheroes in general in the movie don't officially "connect" it's very appropriate that Glenn Talbot and "Thunderbolt" Ross are filling two different levels of the same job; plus Pasdar is really good in the part (and yes, it'd be great if he and Hurt had a scene in the movie.)

Otherwise, Episode 11 mostly felt like catch-up time (which is fine) and using Yo-Yo Rodriguez's introduction as a narrative way to get across exposition about not every Secret Warrior recruit sticking around S.H.I.E.L.D. HQ, i.e. "You deserve to also live normal lives" here translating to "Thanks for having a cool new power for us to show off for an episode, see you again at the season finale!" Oh, and Coulson's super-meta exchange with the President (a character from the "movie side") about how his team will keep doing what they do behind the scenes an "You'll just keep pretending we don't exist?" Okay, that's funny - not "write a whole recap" funny, but funny.

"The Inside Man," on the other hand? Great episode.

Wednesday, March 16, 2016

Review: ZOOTOPIA (2016)

NOTE: This review is possible in part through donations to The MovieBob Patreon. If you like what you see and you'd like to see more like it, please consider becoming a Patron.

Okay, so here's the premise of ZOOTOPIA, a movie that kind of plays out like Disney Animation got hold of an unfilmmed script for a Dreamworks movie and said "Hey guys, let us show you what one of these would look like if they didn't suck."

Minor SPOILERS follow...

Video Review: 10 CLOVERFIELD LANE (2016)

Monday, March 14, 2016

Sunday, March 13, 2016


NOTE I: This review is made possible through the generosity of donors to The MovieBob Patreon. If you'd like to see more like it, please consider becoming a Patron.

NOTE II: See post-script for important information.

Here's a perfectly good (excellent, in fact) little movie that's probably going to piss people off because of its title - or, more specifically, its title's part in the twee, self-satisfied meta promotional games of producer JJ Abrams. That's a pity, because once you understand that this really isn't a "sequel" to CLOVERFIELD (thank God...) but rather an attempt to turn CLOVERFIELD's more-memorable-than-the-film marketing campaign into a kind of anthology-branding; there's a genuinely ingenious production under here (it was originally filmmed as it's own movie under "THE CELLAR," with the decision to retitle it coming post-production) doomed to be obscured by how annoyed lay moviegoers are likely to be that its not a "real" sequel and how annoying people like me find the idea of CLOVERFIELD as branding to begin with: Sorry kids, I've done more with my life than obsess over the minutiae of everything the tenaciously-middlebrow Abrams/Bad Robot have produced since ALIAS, and as such I don't find insider-references to Los Angeles freeway exits to be the cleverest thing ever.

But, hey! The movie is good - really good, in fact. You should go see it. And then afterwards, hit the jump for a review which, by necessity, features SPOILERS.

Wednesday, March 09, 2016

The MovieBob Anthology Is Now Complete With THE GAME OVERTHINKER & BEYOND eBook

UPDATE! The first five books are now available in Apple iBooks format for iPad, iPod Touch, iPhone and MAC. You'll find the iBooks Store like on each books linked purchase page, or you can reach my iTunes author page HERE.

Here it is, the one you've been waiting for. Unless you don't know what I'm talking about, in which case, scroll down.

The first run of my new collection of ebooks curating the best of my earlier work, "The MovieBob Anthology," is now complete with the newest and final volume, "GAME OVERTHINKER & BEYOND" - which includes transcripts of select classic OverThinker episodes and columns, articles and blogs about games and game culture from The Escapist, this blog and elsewhere. You can buy a copy in .epub format (compatible with most e-readers) from Lulu HERE for the low price of only $4.00 US.

Saturday, March 05, 2016


So. I recognize that I dropped the ball on "covering" the final go-through of AGENT CARTER's second season; a mistake which can be blamed largely on some busy/trying times here around the home office and at least partially on the show becoming increasingly difficult to write interestingly about as the season wore on. Sorry, this one just didn't work for me.

However! I did end up writing a "season summation" piece like I'd planned to, it just didn't get posted here. Instead, it got space as part of my new gig over at ScreenRant. You can read it here.

Suffice it to say: I don't think Season 2 worked, and it feels like they didn't really have a solid plan for it other than "we have to do another one of these." In the piece I break down how this doesn't have to mean the end for the characters or their place in the MCU, but the bottom line is that I wouldn't expect a 3rd go-around, at least not in the same format.

Friday, March 04, 2016

Another New eBook Collection: MOVIEBOB'S REEL RETRO!

By now I imagine you know the drill. If not, scroll down.

I'm collecting the best of my previously-published work in a series of themed eBooks as "The MovieBob Anthology," and the newest volume, "MOVIEBOB'S REEL RETRO" - a collection of my reviews and articles about classic, obscure, overlooked or even forgotten older films - is the newest one to reach completion. You can buy a copy in .epub format (compatible with most e-readers) from Lulu HERE for the low price of only $4.00 US.

Tuesday, March 01, 2016

Two More New eBook Collections: STRANGE HOLLYWOOD and IDIOT BOX!

The big MovieBob Anthology rollout continues. The three from yesterday and the day before are still available (and will continue to be, since these are digital books) so if you want the details on what's new today, hit the jump:

Sunday, February 28, 2016

Two More New eBook Collections: SUPERHERO CINEMA and GEEK STREAK

You have seen yesterday that I've begun rolling out my new series of MovieBob Anthology eBooks, which collect the best of my written work from this blog, The Escapist and elsewhere into a series of individually-themed volumes. Yesterday saw MOVIEBOB'S REEL BREAKDOWN drop, which collected the best of my written (read: non-Escape to The Movies) film reviews. Today, I'm proud to make available two new volumes: MOVIEBOB'S SUPERHERO CINEMA and MOVIEBOB'S GEEK STREAK; which collect a selection of non-review features on comic book movies and "geek culture," respectively.

Digital-storefront-specific versions are pending, but you can buy all three in epub-format (which works on almost all devices and desktops) directly from Lulu NOW by clicking their respective titles above. Hit the jump for more info...

Saturday, February 27, 2016

NEW EBOOK COLLECTION: MovieBob's Reel Breakdown

UPDATE: An error that was discovered with one of the reviews featuring incorrect text (Tomorrowland) has been corrected in the finished product. If anyone who already purchased a copy would like to talk replacement, please feel free to contact me.

Hey hey! Remember when I said I was going to publish me some eBooks collecting my earlier reviews and other articles? Well, the first one is now available through for just $4.00 US!

"MovieBob's Reel Breakdown" is a collection of reviews NOT from Escape to The Movies (it's complicated) but a specially-curated selection of criticism culled from my written Escapist columns, blogs originally posted here and transcripts from my independent video reviews - yes, including the PIXELS review. I'd call it a healthy, eclectic mix encompassing newer fare like JURASSIC WORLD and a "supplemental review" of INTERSTELLAR alongside "older" fare like FUNNY GAMES or BLUE IS THE WARMEST COLOR and infamous disasters like WINTER'S TALE and STONEWALL. All told, there's about 60 total full-length reviews in here, each one preceded by an all-new exclusive introduction offering context and my current thoughts on the piece.

You'll note that the cover indicates that this is the first book in the "MovieBob Anthology;" and indeed 5-6 more volumes are coming soon. Titles are still pending, but subjects could (tentatively) include Classic Reviews, Video Games, Geek Culture, Hollywood History/Business, TV Commentary/Reviews and Superheroes.

It should be available in Kindle, Kobo, Nook and iBooks formats soon enough, but for now it's being sold on Lulu - and I recommend you pick it up from them :) FWIW, this is my first crack and independent self-publishing these things, so any feedback would be appreciated.

Wednesday, February 24, 2016

I Need an Editor - Is It You?

UPDATE: It's possible that the position may have already been filled - please refrain from sending emails if this bold message is still visible. Thank you.

Straight to the point: I have a project that requires some fairly tedious pain-in-the-ass editing, and I'm willing to pay someone to do it because my schedule doesn't fit with this sort of additional workload - at least not in a decent timeline. So I'm looking to talk to a freelance editor - preferably NOT a total stranger, hence using my blog and social-media instead of whatever LinkedIn actually does.

Interested? Read on.

Friday, February 19, 2016

Review: THE WITCH (2016)

THE WITCH is good. Pretty goddamn great in fact. It’s got killer atmosphere, it’s scary, it’s original, it’s fiercely well made, the acting is stellar, the effects are sparse but excellent, the screenplay is a marvel and the whole production feels unique, fascinating and endlessly watchable. It works as a drama, it works as a horror film, it works as historical recreation and it even works an arthouse movie that you can just let wash over you like rainy day museum visit.

It’s also the kind of “serious-minded” horror movie that critics tend to go nuts for but mainstream horror fans end up regarding as “overrated,” and I can already tell that this is going to be one of those good but “difficult” movies where people act like assholes if you don’t like it. So lemme just say up front that THE WITCH is great and if you don’t think so you’re wrong… but I understand.