July 2022 meant lots of comics, movies, but also music additions for the physical collection.
It’s still a hit-or-miss affair with the Retrogamer subscription, with one of the magazines being a replacement, as the original never arrived, and the other one making it through the logistics chaos.
The same held true for EDGE, but after I contacted My Favourite Magazines and told them the address of the company (mis)handling their magazines in Germany, I was told they couldn’t give any information about their business partner… which I actually gave them to start an investigation. So no change in the foreseeable future…
This was the last time I bought the LEGO Star Wars magazine, not only because it featured the Mandalorian (a TV show I still find so overrated and boring), but because I simply don’t have much of a connection with the Disney era.
One can never be too old for Super Mario merch, though.
I got the newest Coheed and Cambria album for my name day, and it was a surprisingly pop-heavy CD, which is not such a bad thing, as it had plenty of catchy melodies to listen to, including lyrics and artwork that are still as epic and dark as one expects them to be.
La Dispute’s Rooms of the House isn’t easy to listen to, as it’s one of the most emotional albums of the band, with heartfelt lyrics and singing/screaming.
New Found Glory’s Catalyst is pure hardcore punk, but still mixed with pop and heavy metal riffs, making it another cool album with some particularly weird artwork.
It’s truly the time for starting to read the original Conan the Barbarian short stories and then dive into the comics, as I was able to (mostly) complete my collection(s).
Ordering via Andis Comic Express or Comic Room Hamburg has unfortunately become an annoying shopping experience, as the comic on the left showed quite a bit of wear (even if sold as new) and the one on the right was a pre-order that was simply not shipped because the supplier didn’t receive the notification that it was pre-ordered. Oh my, professional comic dealers…
I can heartily recommend US-Comicversand Harald Grimm which has great prices and the condition of the comics are usually in top shape, so I could almost get all the Howard the Duck comics. Unfortunately the first volume I bought via Allstar-Comics on ebay arrived with creases throughout the paper, and when I contacted the seller, he told me I should get in touch with ebay shipping, as they were responsible for the damage… As I don’t have much time, I haven’t come around this, and I think it’s a pretty sorry excuse for something that should be done by the person who shipped it.
I’m looking forward to find out how Injustice‘s prequel explains what happens after or before the last volume I read… or maybe not. The Punisher MAX is a series that is difficult to complete due to low availability, but with the fifth collection I’m getting closer.
There’s simply too much going on in the world of comics, but it’s still good to have actual newspapers in this day and age of digital content.
Another shop I can heartily recommend is Comic Planet that has some great deals, but also offers some unexpected freebies, like one of these comics (the other one provided by Harald Grimm).
I got some of these free comics from Andi, but also one from Grimm again (the Vampirella issue), so there are alternatives to the Hamburg shop which has been messing up my orders quite a lot recently (more about that next month).
After so much reading (I actually haven’t come around doing that with any of these), it’s time to browse through the various movies I bought, starting with the action genre. I found Fast & Furious 9 as entertaining as most of the previous instalments, despite an obviously ridiculous story. The Jackie Chan flick was okay, but it’s like this: If you’ve seen many of his earlier movies, you’ve seen them all. Stop! Or My Mom Will Shoot is an action comedy that isn’t particularly memorable, but it still has its funny moments.
One could say that Skyfire is an action movie, but I put it in the adventure category. Despite a great premise that is as ridiculous as it sounds (building a theme park on top of an active volcano), it had too much Asian melodrama in it for me, which is too bad because there were some nice set-pieces, even if the CGI wasn’t that good.
I haven’t watched An American Tail until the end, but as it’s the case with many early animated movies for children, it’s a bit difficult to get into it, especially if it’s all about the importance of family values that I’ve always find annoying in Disney flicks. The Arthur and the Minimoys movies are another series I was having trouble with getting, as the humor was too childish for me. However, I really liked the last one which had more action and other movie references, especially the sci-fi genre.
Dude, Where’s My Car? is one of those rare cases I remember to be annoying when I first watched it during my university days, but that I then found genius many many years later. As one simply can’t predict what happens in the next scene or what is actually going on, it’s a comedy that has to be seen to be believed.
Watching movies that are based on comics is always a different experience from the source material, especially if one hasn’t read it. Even if Bloodshot has its narrative and character problems, I thought it was quite fun to watch. After having sat through the 3D (and thus theatrical) version of Justice League which didn’t make much sense, I had bigger hope of the Zack Snyder cut, and thankfully it was pretty good. While it didn’t make more sense, it was a much more epic and emotional experience and didn’t feel as long, which is ironic considering it was over an hour longer than the other version.
Driving Miss Daisy was a slow burner of a drama, but with a very touching ending, it was worth spending time with, although I’m not sure I’d rate it very high with all the Oscars it won.
Movies based on videogames are always difficult to rate if one has played the source material. In the case of the newest Mortal Kombat, I thought it was the right direction with the fight sequences that are pretty gory at times. However, it took itself too seriously, so I still prefer the more fun version with Christopher Lambert. Werewolves Within takes inspirations from the Ubisoft VR game which borrowed the gameplay from a very popular card game. I haven’t played either of these, so my expectations were only those of a horror (comedy) fan, and in that regard it worked with some weird characters and a bit of blood and guts thrown in. Except for that, it’s highly unoriginal, so one won’t miss much if one doesn’t watch it.
Next up are plenty of horror movies, starting with the third Conjuring installment which wasn’t as good as the first one, but scarier and more disturbing than the sequel (see the Halloween 2017 Movie Special, Day 2: “The Conjuring 1+2” article). The Craft: Legacy is something of an unnecessary sequel, as it doesn’t have much suspense and I couldn’t care less about the characters. Freaky tried to be very original with its body switching idea (teenager becomes psycho killer, psycho killer becomes teenager), but it was only mildly entertaining at times, probably because I didn’t get too attached to either the killer or survivors. Malignant isn’t a true return to the “Saw” movies form and it’s certainly not as scary as what James Wan has done with the original Insidious (see the Halloween 2017 Movie Special, Day 1: “Insidious 1-3” article), as it’s too predictable. But the mix of action, thriller, and horror with some surprisingly violent and disgusting scenes was still entertaining enough.
It seems that today’s horror movies try very hard to imitate classic horror, and The Mortuary Collection is one such example, delivering a series of more or less disgusting short films that are never quite surprising. At times it reminds oneself of the Haunted Mansion books (see the New additions to the media collection in June 2021 article) with the mortician instead of the librarian keeping stories of people alive. However, I found the children’s books actually more original and scary than this movie, which says a lot. Polaroid was another okay horror flick that had way too much talking and not enough scary elements, except for the finale. Sky Sharks really deserves its low rating and negative comments, as it’s such a boring movie that features very few memorably cool scenes. If the Action Cut would have been included, which leaves out 30 minutes of endless talking, I’d enjoyed it a bit more, I guess.
88 Films knows how to bring very obscure Hong Kong cinema movies to the HD home cinema, and The Seventh Curse fits right in with its strange mix of very gory horror, trash monster costumes, gratuitous nudity, and a lot of fighting with guns, feet, and hands involved.
I’m still not sure what to think of the flick, as it had a mess of a story, but the ridiculous monster fight at the end more than made up for its shortcomings.
It remains to be seen if I’ll buy each deluxe edition of 88 Films, but it feels rather nice having all these cards and poster variants as well as the booklet.
Talking or writing about trash, sci-fi horror comedy movie Psycho Goreman is definitely a weird experience with one of the most annoying child actresses I’ve seen in a while. Except for that, it had plenty of silly moments with lots of violence but also comedy elements that felt like The Wishmaster. But again I still prefer the source material over this modern interpretation that tries a bit too hard to be trash-y and cool.
Here are two very differerent thrillers, although in the case of The Forever Purge, action and horror play big parts, too. It’s not a particularly surprising new addition to the franchise, with way too much politics thrown in, but I found it quite good, even if it was nothing in quality compared to the previous movies or the TV show. Loft is a thriller with so many twists and turns that it comes highly recommended even to those who usually avoid crime movies (like me), although after having watched the US remake, the effect wasn’t that surprising anymore.
Wonder Woman 1984 is another example of comic book adaptations that feels a bit too long, and while the 3D effects are quite nice and the general concept of everyone’s dreams can lead to disaster is interesting, the story could have been told in less time and there should have been a bit more humor instead of politics involving the 80ies.
This is a long forgotten part of my childhood finally brought back via the physical TV edition. Of course I didn’t know the original title was Tijuana Toads, but the adventures of Sancho and Pancho (or El Toro and Pancho in the US version) are still as much anarchic fun as back in the days.
So here we have it: another busy month of collecting physical media and barely enough time to cover one form of entertainment. Let’s see what August has in store next time…