5 (minimum 1)
on 25 May 2008 /
I would say that these are amongst the finest movies ever made. Truly a monument to modern day art via cinematography. Everything that is good and pure has been contained within these movies, and then released to individuals with DVD players across the globe. My review:
-These movies rock. The timeline was done amazingly well, the style of each movie is individual, unique YET remains part of a flowing and weaving storyline. Please note I DO NOT INCLUDE ALIEN VS. PREDATOR IN THIS REVIEW. THAT MOVIE WAS NEVER CREATED.
-H.R. Giger is already an artistic genius, and he got to bask in the glory of a nightmarish creation that was done as a PERFECT transition from nightmare to art to film to dream. So good, so good.
-The underlying themes in the movie are really deep I think. In particular Alien 3. There is a lot of conflict in the "traditional" sense, such as man vs. self, man vs. man, man vs. environment. Whoa, all three. Touche. First off, Ripley has to deal with this massive identity crisis (again, poor girl) where she is stranded on a planet full of rapists, killers and god knows what else. If you remove the actual human being element out of this equation there is a very, very primal concept here, linked into the environment (hostile, barren, lifeless). As a female I believe her role is intensified via representation (female, lifegiver in a life forsaken place) symbolism (hero in land of villains) and contradictory terms (while the "purest" as far as crimes and such go, she carries with her the alien which trumps every single evil imaginable there).
-Alien was done perfectly as an intro to a series. Suspense in not quite a horror theme, but certainly not action. Enter Aliens, which is the storm after the calm in all the right ways. Alien 3 has as mentioned psychological impact, and then Alien: Resurrection deals with a more spiritual and emotional side of both the characters and the demons, with the plot taking on a very maternal setting.
-I'm really happy to see the Aliens vs. Predator was NOT part of this package. Thank. God.
I could write a novel on these films. Seriously, I could write books on philosophy, science, literature and religion on the Aliens Series. But as it stands I'll just chill out and watch them and write a personal review. Does the job for me.
5 (minimum 1)
on 25 May 2008 /
I liked this album, but if my CD scratched, I wouldn't rush out to buy it again. I don't know, I preferred Tool's angrier, earlier stuff, driven I guess by something more raw and universal. I loved the poetry they wrote in Undertow (4 degrees and Bottom in particular), but I won't go off on another album as I am reviewing this one right now.
-Vicarious, Rosetta Stoned and Right in Two. Especially Right in Two. Ahhhh Tool, you truly know how to make the heart flutter with music :-)
-The song "Lost Keys" actually DOES have lost keys in it! You just have to hold down FF on the track (depending on what kind of CD player you have. It worked on mine. I only have one CD player so I can't really prove comparisons).
-This isn't their last album! (Hopefully!)
Minuses (it pains me too):
-Wayyyyyyyyyy too much buddist monk chanting bullshit as filler tracks. Cool that Maynard's on the spiritual thing, and I do mean that sincerely, but...really? Does it have to be mass produced and infected throughout the masses? I didn't like the "ohm" thing, over and over, on one of the tracks. I can't even be bothered to remember which one it was.
-Rosetta Stoned, while one of my favorite tracks on the album, reminds me of a hellishly bad acid trip where the comedown steers you in all the wrong directions. Strapped down in a bed? Aliens? Chosen One, high school? Loss of bowls? Oh my.....quite the description....but I did love the style in which it was done :-). One of those rare ones where I focused more on the music than the lyrical intent. So this is a +/-.
-Um, the fact that I selectively chose 3 songs out of a TOOL ALBUM says assloads. Perhaps it me. I don't know, I remember a distinct style that shone through on Opiate, Undertow and Aenima. I heard it drifting a bit in Lateralus, but this is, I don't know. Undefinable. Which is one of Tool's most admirable qualities, but I suppose it's one of their more unpredictable ones too.
I guess I could rant more, but the mind floats and I'm already thinking about something else. I dunno. Listen to Right in Two. It's good. The album package is kinda cool too, albeit it will fuck up your eyes with those lens if you look at things too closely for too long. Trust me :-)
5 (minimum 1)
on 25 May 2008 /
I played this game a few years ago and remember really enjoying it, and yes, true to popular belief, there is an overwhelming amount of comparisons to Final Fantasy 7. The silver haired protagonist with the unbelievable swordsmanship, yet who remains just mysterious enough to not hate. The cute brunette girl-next-door whom the main hero it totally oblivious to. The hero himself who has zero to no personality at the beginning. And despite all this there are quite a few things that give it an individual punch that's worth investing in.
-The graphics ARE final fantasy 7. Period. Cut scenes are similar, in game graphics are similar, even the camera angles in battle sometimes look like a cut and paste job.
-The magic in this game blows. It's embarrassingly limited, and what you can access is gone within seconds. To boot, you have to be in Dragoon form when you cast...unless you want to use up some of your precious "32 item slots" with one-time use items. Bleh.
-If you are, for some reason, just starting to play PS1 RPGS, and just finished Final Fantasy 7, do yourself a favor and don't play this game right after. You'll be sorely disappointed.
-Once you get the hang of the battle system, some of the fights are ridiculously easy. I don't think I even used healing in battle till the second disk.
-Story can get a little confusing with the timeline and myths trying to incorporate each other, and sometimes the emphasis is too strong and you're left wondering why an event even happened.
-I personally loved the fact that you got to be interactive in battles. As much as I do appreciate the turn based style of FF, this was kind of a cool feature I thought.
-The characterization is pretty decent. When a certain main character dies *won't say in case you haven't played and are planning on it*, it does suck and adds some added incentive for chasing the villain.
-The soundtrack I found really impressive. The world map music on disk 2 is amazing, it's so soothing and peaceful, the composer is a genius.
-I found you actually stay interested in the game pretty much all the way through. I find with some longer RPG's, you generally just don't give a shit what happens after awhile. I found this with Final Fantasy 10 and couldn't wait to rid myself of it.
All in all I would say this is a good game. I grabbed it again for $20, and have no regrets about replaying it...it had been so long I forgot the story anyways :-)