The LEGO Batman Review

If you are a fan of Batman, or The LEGO Movie then you will absolutely love The LEGO Batman Movie!! The LEGO Batman Movie is definitely a movie that entire families will enjoy together. The jokes are solid, the main storyline tugs at the heart strings, and the voice acting was on point. Be prepared to get your geek on because there are so many non-Batman LEGO cameos that you might feel like you are watching a LEGO Dimensions movie.  The one thing I will say is that I think The LEGO Batman Movie could have been a little shorter. It is 1hr 45min but they could have taken out a few jokes to get it down to the 1hr 30min mark. I am going to leave this review short and sweet so I don’t spoil anything for you readers. We give the LEGO Batman movie 4 1/2 LEGO figures and recommend that everyone with or without children go see this movie. You will not regret seeing it!!

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Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice Review

Last night J and I attended a screening of Batman v Superman with our friends from Salt Lake Comic Con. It was fun to see a comic book themed movie with a bunch of geeks/nerds.

The movie takes place 18 months after the events of Man of Steel. We see what was going in with Bruce Wayne during the Superman/Zod fight and why he is so mad at the Man of Steel. Now, even though we see that Clark has only been Superman for about 2 years, we learn that Batman has been fighting crime in Gotham for 20 years. Batman’s brand of justice has evolved to where he is now branding sex traffickers and those who would harm children. He’s simply had enough, and after the events of Man of Steel, he wants to do nothing but protect the planet from the possibility of Superman going “bad”.

I really enjoyed Ben Affleck as the Batman, and Gal Gadot made me excited for the Wonder Woman movie. The Batman/Superman fight scenes were very reminiscent of The Dark Knight Returns part 2, and we loved them. The pace of the movie was pretty slow and I personally think they could have cut 30-45 minutes.

I think that Batman v Superman would be a fun $5 Tuesday movie, but don’t take the kids. It’s not that it’s scary or too violent, it’s just too slow paced and too long. If your kids want to see it, wait for the Blu-Ray.

The Future of Comic Book Movies

With the success of Deadpool and with the announcement of an R-rated cut of Batman V Superman, there are many parents out there who are worried that all movies based on comic books will bear the R rating. I personally don’t think that this is something that will happen. Comic book movies make so much of their money from parents taking their younger kids, that it would likely be financially irresponsible for studios to only make R-rated movies.

Something else to think about is that Batman V Superman is not the first Comic Book movie to get an alternate rated dvd/blu-ray release. If you go back three years to The Wolverine (I know it was terrible, but it was the last comic book movie to get an unrated cut after it’s PG-13 theatrical release), you will see that it really doesn’t take much to get an R rating. The theatrical release of the Wolverine had one “F-Bomb”, quite a bit of action, a little blood here and there, while the Unrated release had three “F-Bombs” (more than one is an automatic R), more action, and blood EVERYWHERE!

According to the Motion Picture Association of America, “An R-rated motion picture may include adult themes, adult activity, hard language, intense or persistent violence, sexually oriented nudity, drug abuse…” Before we continue, I want to break down a few of these guidelines just a little more:

Language: Movies are getting pretty lax these days, and it seems like they can pretty much get away with saying pretty much whatever they want. But as I mentioned before, more than one “F-bomb” can get you an R rating, unless there is a two-thirds majority of the board who believe the language is justified by context or use.

Violence: Movies based on comic books will usually have some kind of violence, but when it is intense or persistent, you are tiptoeing the line between PG-13 and R.

Nudity: Along with the guidelines about sexually oriented nudity, in 2010 the MPAA added that “male nudity” will likely get you an R rating.

Back to the issue at hand. Everyone behind Deadpool was doing everything in their power to push the R boundary as close as possible to the NC-17 line. With 84 “F-bombs”, violence and blood out the wazoo, a multiple minute sex montage, and a view of Deadpool’s penis, Deadpool was lucky to premiere with their R rating.

The news that Batman V Superman is getting an R-rated cut shouldn’t scare anyone, it should excite people. Where Deadpool can be seen as a model for future characters who don’t have established storylines in a cinematic universe, Batman V Superman can be seen as the new model for the PG-13 theatrical/dual rated dvd/blu-ray release. I’m not saying every comic book movie should follow either model just for the sake of following the model, but that the studios should just be focusing on who the character is via the source material.

The future of comic book movies is not going to be based on the success of Deadpool, Marvel will keep doing what they are doing with the MCU with their PG-13 films, their ABC crime style dramas, and their mature Netflix content, and DC will continue to play catch up with their cinematic universe while dominating in the animation department. The only change that we will most likely see from Deadpool’s success will hopefully be more movies/online series starring more of the anti-heroes of the comic book world.   

The bottom line is that no matter what a movie is rated, it is our job as parents to view questionable content before letting our kids watch it. If I am wrong and all comic book movies go the way of Deadpool, then you can always wait for the FX release.

The Giving Grinch Cosplay Charity Event

Thanksgiving weekend usually ends the same way for me. I’ve usually eaten enough that I feel like I bear in need of hibernation. This year was a little different. With my wife and J being out of town, I decided to check out The Giving Grinch Cosplay Charity event going on at Mod A Go Go in Downtown Salt Lake City.

The Giving Grinch is a year round charity that collects non-perishable foods, blankets, clothes, toys, etc. for families who may be without around the holidays. This year marked the first, of what organizers hope to be many, Cosplay event. The Cosplay Charity event was created by Geek Girls Corp members Amber Dahl and Collin Farmer. Saturday’s event wasn’t just about getting the standard donation items, The Giving Grinch has been raising funds to send a family to the most magical place in the world via GoFundMe, and Saturday’s event was capped by telling the family about the trip. Cosplayers from H.E.R.O.I.C. Inc., The Legacy Initiative, the Umbrella Corps- Utah Hive, and others dressed as Disney/Marvel/DC/Nintendo/Resident Evil characters ready to help take in donations and take pics with any and everyone that walked by.

The event itself was amazing. Besides all the amazing cosplayers, there were vendors with amazing merchandise, there were face painters for the kids (and adults), there was a silent auction that had some amazing items donated by individuals and by the wonderful people at FantasyCon. Walking throughout the event Saturday, you could really feel the spirit of charity flowing through every person that was in attendance. Everyone involved with this charity and event truly cares about their fellow human beings. It was enough to make me tear up a few times throughout the night.

A few of the moments that almost brought out the water works was seeing the youngest daughter of the family (mentioned above) interacting with the Disney Princess cosplayers. She wasn’t interacting with the cosplayers as people in princess costumes, but as though the cosplayers were the princesses themselves. My favorite moment was seeing an Elsa cosplayer singing ‘Let It Go’ to the young girl and that little girl was loving every second of it.

As we go through out the rest of this holiday season, let us remember those who are not in the best situations and let us do all that we can to show love to our fellow human beings. Sometimes it may not seem like it, but we are in this together. As you are doing your shopping I ask that you think of those around you and think of ways that you can help make their holiday brighter this year.

For more information about the Giving Grinch Cosplay GoFundMe fundraiser and to help send a much deserving family to the most magical place on Earth, check out http://www.gofundme.com/CosplayCharityEvnt. Merry Christmas, Happy Hanukkah, Happy Kwanza, Happy whatever you may be celebrating.   

Nerdy Holiday Shopping

Parents, grandparents, aunts, uncles, etc, who are trying to nerdify the children in your family, this post is for you.  This year J and I have put together a small aStore with some of our favorite clothes, toys and games that we found on Amazon. These gift ideas will help nerd out all the kids in your family. Our store has Marvel, DC, Star Wars, Mighty Morphin’ Power Rangers, and Star Trek clothes, toys and video games. Click Here if you want to look through our store, and if you are not finding what you are looking for, you can get to amazon by clicking the “powered by amazon.com” button. Happy Shopping!!!!

Son of Batman

 

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DC has always made some pretty amazing animated features, and Son of Batman is no exception. A tight story and epic fight scenes make this an animated feature that should not be missed. Son of Batman is an adaptation of the 2006 Batman and Son story arc. The plot is different from the graphic novel, so if you were planning on skipping this film because you read the book, don’t. You will do yourself a disservice by missing out on this animated feature. There is quite a bit of blood in this film, especially in the first 10 minutes. We waited until J was sleeping before my wife and I watched it. If you love Batman, go to the store right now and buy it!!!! If you don’t want to buy it, rent it from iTunes or Amazon Instant Video. Whatever you do, make sure you see this movie!! I give this film…5 BATARANGS!!!

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The Tiny Titans Are Back!!!

Tiny Titans

The Tiny Titans are back in Return to the Treehouse. J loves Tiny Titans comics, and this one is no different. We have read our copy about 5 times already and we’ve only had it for a couple hours. The Tiny Titans return with the a great story and awesome artwork that all ages can enjoy. The story will have you laughing and will leave you wanting more. I promise you will enjoy this fun series. This is the first of six issues, a great start to your child’s first comic book collection. I recommend that every child and parent have this series in their comic collection.

J and his comic