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When I'm not writing about my experiences in this journey called 'life', I'm singing and uploading my own interpretations of modern music. Click on "Cover Songs" to hear them, or on the YouTube logo on the right to see my YouTube channel.

Friday, June 6, 2008

Darkside Daily 2.0 : The Return

After an extremely long break, Darkside Daily is back. Yes, I must apologise for my long absence, but even jobless bloggers have a life that needs attention now and then. So it was with some relief I sat down at my computer today to type this new post. Did I miss much?

Well it seems I did; actually it depends on how you look at it. The last three weeks have been quite newsworthy in every respect. There’s the devastation in China, Sharon Stone’s extremely ill-timed ‘karma’ comments, the U.S. elections, the conclusion of the much publicised and highly lucrative Indian Premier League and the rumours regarding the birth of Brangelina’s twins.

Yet despite all this, I picked up a newspaper the other day that had somehow or the other managed to ignore all this and run a front page headline that read “Man dies of sexual asphyxia”.
What?! What does that even mean??

Apparently a German man working for an Indian company was found dead in his apartment. As shocking as that may be nothing could prepare you for the details surrounding his death. The victim was found half naked, without his pants, lying on his bed with albums of pornographic material scattered all around him. The official statement is that the man had saluted the flag a bit too patriotically, thus resulting in his untimely demise. The article then went into great and unnecessary detail describing sexual asphyxia, the act of reaching climax by strangulation and oxygen deprivation.

Are you kidding me?! No wonder they say fact is stranger than fiction; you can’t make stuff like this up!

We at Darkside Daily try to moderate our posts so as not to cause offense to any of our readers. (All three of ya’ll.) So instead of discussing disturbing sexual practices or inviting you to send in your entries for “Least Offensive Epitaph” for the above story, we have decided once again to delve into the movie industry.

Recently I was lucky enough to get to see the summer blockbuster “Iron Man”. “Iron Man” has done exceptionally well at the box-office, and it’s easy to see why. The movie stars Robert Downey Jr., an actor who is very much at home with roles involving wit and sarcasm, and blends a comic book hero with the real world almost seamlessly. It’s one of those movies that came out at exactly the right time; the world is very aware of weapons of mass destruction and terrorists (thank you, Mr.Bush) and the entire concept of Iron Man revolved around advanced technology, something that was portrayed in an exceedingly believable manner in the movie, thanks to the use of some very nifty CGI. Add to that the surprisingly good looking Gwyneth Paltrow (sorry, not a fan!) and a very cool soundtrack, and its easy to see why this movie has done so well. Another trick Hollywood has used in this instance is the magic of the sequel. No longer are directors and writers restricted by the 120-minute maximum duration that a movie can run; now its enough just to give a taste of what is to come and spread the entire weight of the story between three movies and label it a ‘trilogy’. “Iron Man” is one such example; the ending of the movie basically had ‘SEQUEL’ written all over it in big bold letters.

Now, I’m not against Hollywood’s newfound love for the sequel. I agree that there are some stories that cannot be told within the confines of a conventional movie. Some examples that come to mind are the Lord of The Rings trilogy and the Bourne trilogy. Despite being of different genres, both trilogies were true epics and could not have been told within three hours. Then of course there is the Star Wars saga, spanning six movies and close to 30 years as well. Somehow I never found it as engrossing as I had been led to believe it would be; maybe I’m just too young to appreciate the magic of creating a Star Wars movie in the 70’s.

But then there are the unnecessary sequels, the ones that are written solely to milk the success of the first movie and have no intention of creating anything new and fresh. Big Momma’s House 2? Seriously?! Van Wilder 2?! Dumb and Dumberer?! These movies are made for no other reason except to trick viewers into believing that they’ve created something as funny or as memorable as the first movie. That’s like gifting a nine-year old the same bicycle you gave him for his eighth birthday; except in a different colour.

Then there are the movies that were intended to be part of a trilogy but were just flat out failures. Yes, behind the production of these movies, someone actually had enough brains to say “No, even a deranged monkey would not want to watch another instalment of THAT movie!” Some examples that come to mind are Daredevil, The Hulk and Elektra. As you might have noticed, the comic book movie, or combo-movie is often associated with this category.

And finally, there are sequels that were made to resurrect the franchise. Of late there have been a lot of these, and at first I was extremely sceptical about them. For example, when I heard that Rocky Balboa was coming out, I almost laughed. The last time Sly had suited up to play Rocky he was wearing a silly black hat through the movie. It was a total disaster of a Rocky flick, and I never forgave him for it. Another such disaster was the fourth instalment of the Batman movies, the creatively titled ‘Batman and Robin’. I am an avid fan of the Dark Knight (hence the logo) and to me, watching Batman and Robin reminded me of the scene from “Hart’s War”, when the Germans found the radio that the American POW’s had painstakingly assembled, and then went on to destroy it in front of their faces. It was an extremely painful memory. Right about the time I heard about Rocky Balboa, someone told me that Die Hard 4.0 was coming out too. Seriously?! Bruce Willis refuses to die, AGAIN??

But time has shown that all three franchises ended extremely successfully. Rocky Balboa was an amazing rollercoaster ride of emotions, and is still one of my favourite movies. Die Hard 4.0 was extremely well done, and brought Bruce Willis enough fame and money to be enable him to date and dump a series of gorgeous models half his age. “Batman Begins” turned into one of the biggest blockbusters of the year, bringing back a franchise that was declared dead years ago, and also paving the way for the much anticipated “Dark Knight” which is due to release this July.

Yes, the world of movies is changing. Gone are the days when a movie was treated as an individual piece of art. Hollywood has evolved, and soon every movie will come with a standard sequel-option, wherein the ending of every movie will be either vague enough or inconclusive enough to support the production of a sequel, depending on its performance at the box-office. In a way it has become similar to TV shows, where every season ends with a cliff hanger, and depending on ratings the networks decide whether to continue with the series or just scrap it and make a reality show.


1 comment:

Sabby said...

Dark knight sucked =P

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