Category Archives: reviews

Response: The Dark Knight Rises

The Dark Knight Rises posterI’m not a big comic-book reader, except for the occasional graphic novel. But I do like superhero movies, and all the hype around The Dark Knight Rises meant I couldn’t wait to see the conclusion to Christopher Nolan’s Batman trilogy.

(No spoilers, unless you’re unusually sensitive.)

There’s some really good stuff here. The villain, Bane, could hardly be more different from the Joker, which enables him to mostly escape the long shadow cast by Heath Ledger — his imposing physicality dominates whenever he’s onscreen. His plot starts with a spectacular action sequence (yes, Nolan manages to surprise — not an easy feat nowadays) before a bit of a lull, then a series of events that escalates the stakes for Gotham well beyond what I expected.

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Guest post by Patrick Thunstrom: Game Review: FATE RPG

I have two more fantastic guest bloggers for you this week, and I’ll be back for real on the 9th. Today I’m hosting Patrick Thunstrom, a geek (in the best possible way), writer, and computer guru. Gaming is not something I can talk about intelligently, so I’m thrilled to have Patrick here to talk RPGs…

I’m sure we’ve all heard of Dungeons and Dragons. Between a strange firestorm of controversy in its early years, through two movies, and pop-culture references that half the audience doesn’t even get, the other half are split between knowing of, and understanding the jokes.

It’s a good game with a lot of constructive things it can teach you. But it’s not my favorite RPG.

Yes. There are more than one.

In this case, I’m going to talk about the FATE system, a ‘rules light’ game that really encourages players and game masters to tell a story together!

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Response: The Avengers

The Avengers movie posterI’m a lightweight fan when it comes to movies about comic-book characters. I usually enjoy superhero movies, but all the backstory and history and in-jokes go over my head because I’m not a comic-book reader. That goes double for The Avengers, because I managed to miss all the lead-in movies except for the first Iron Man. After The Avengers became the next must-see movie, I read enough online to pick up the gist of who most of the characters were, but for the most part I was flying blind.

So how well does The Avengers work for a complete and utter newbie?

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Response: The Woman in Black

I will be the first to admit that I’m not a horror fan. But I am a fan of gothic stories, which is why I decided to see The Woman in Black (2012).

Movie poster for The Woman in Black, 2012

The Woman in Black (2012)

From a gothic perspective, this story has it all — a beautifully decayed manor house, a period setting, deadly supernatural occurrences, a skeptical outsider, a crazy woman, an isolated village full of people behaving strangely, a train, a harsh landscape (in this case a marsh). It also features some very creepy vintage children’s toys.

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