June 3, 2016
Escapism. It’s a term used for stories that are entertaining, light, and inconsequential. Nothing more than an escape from reality. The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier and Clay doesn’t just revel in escapism; it makes a two-fisted defence of it.
The novel tells the story of Joseph Kavalier and Sam Clay, two Jewish cousins growing up in the era when Nazism began to cast its shadow across the world. Joe is a talented artist with a passion for escape artists and stage magic. Aided by his family’s life savings, his magic teacher and an inanimate golem, he escapes Europe just as the fascists are closing the trap. Sam lives in New York with his stereotypical Jewish mother (who doesn’t love a stereotypical Jewish mother?) and grandmother, having been abandoned by his circus strongman (really) father. Despite coming from such burly stock, Sam is short of stature and spindly of leg due to a bout of polio at a young age. He has a big mouth, he is able to conveniently translate into a knack for bombastic writing. Read the rest of this entry »
July 9, 2013
I should preface this review with the declaration that I am a massive comic book nerd. What this means, apart from the fact I can impress the laydeez by listing the entire historical line-up of the Avengers, is that I am welded to certain ideas about how super-heroes are presented, and how they act. I readily admit that some of my problems with the new Superman movie, Man of Steel, fall into finicky comic book shop guy territory. I like to tell myself that the other ones are more reasonable.
1. Why so serious?
Damn, this is a dour movie. It’s written by David S. Goyer and Christopher Nolan, the same team responsible for resurrecting the Batman franchise, and they’ve approached Superman with similar grittiness and gravity. But even Batman Begins and The Dark Knight (and, I guess, the third-one- that-must-not-be-named) let Bruce Wayne make a few gags, and the Joker had a terrifying hilarity about him. Man of Steel is all saccharine morality scenes and Christ-analogies, and the few jokes that exist are forced and lame. This is a Superman that is treated with so much reverence that it saps all the fun out of the character.
2. Henry Cavill is super
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