Revenge of Sikapitan


Written on 5/24/2005 12:30:00 am by sikapitan

I HAVE BEEN GONE FOR WAY TOO LONG! The itch to write has finally arrived. Many things have happened since my last entry. I was away in London for two weeks, and I do apologize for not writing on what surely was a great social comparative experience. I started working in a law firm, of all things, which I am sure I’ll have the opportunity to talk about in the coming entries. Tony Blair’s elected for a third, and surely last, term. Liverpool, of all teams, is in the Champions League final. Manchester United, in addition to being trophy-less for the first time since the 97/98 season, is now controlled by a “supposedly” greedy American, Malcolm Glazer (who of course, just to highlight his “evil”, looked exactly like Rasputin). On the local front, news has been rather slow. No sensational sex scandals, murders, CBT, or celebrity trials that’s worth any mention (though I have to state that I am personally interested in Fazura’s trial *ehem*). But there’s that RM34 million cop we could talk about, but it’ll surely be under some rug at the end of the day.

But just to start it off, I’ll begin with some fluffy piece on what must be the biggest news in Malaysia last week – the final installment of the Star Wars trilogy, Revenge of the Sith. It’s ironic that because of our tendency to watch all things pirated, we get the advantage of watching movies earlier than most countries. I was surprised when my friend in London told me that most of the time the blockbusters are shown in Asian countries first then England. I can’t remember his example, nor can I vouch the authenticity of his claim, but I can’t disagree with the logic of it. Anyway, they’ve got Sky TV over there, which has way too much channels, and if you subscribe to the movie package there’s plenty of recent movies shown, unlike Astro’s movie package. But just like Astro, just give me 3 days with 500 channels and I’m still bored. The novelty wears off quickly, trust me. The only part that doesn’t wear off is the lack of censorship:)

Talking about censorship, have you guys seen Kingdom of Heaven? Now here’s a piece which could be said to have reached the visual and intellectual height of Gladiator (of course, considering they’re both directed by the same person). Minus the casting of Orlando Bloom (He tried but can’t Hollywood see he’s simply not macho enough?), the movie is an excellent interpretation of events during the Holy War period. What I CANNOT understand is the stamp of approval by the Censorship Board for this movie. It’s rated “U”! Umum??? Trust me, there’s nothing “umum” about chopped heads and spilled guts. And if the violence is too “umum” for Malaysians, what about the whole “religious” and “political” undertone of the movie?

I am NOT for censorship, but I question the integrity of the Board if you can rate Hellboy as 18SG (or was it PL) or banning Daredevil while not making an effort to ensure that the same standard is applied to elsewhere. Hellboy and Daredevil are fantasy pieces, from comic strips. Why the double standard for Kingdom of Heaven? Perhaps the Censorship Board thinks we are too stupid to realize the subtle meanings embedded in the story and stupid enough to believe that comic characters are real. C’mon. Lines like “If god doesn’t understand, then there is no god, so we have nothing to be afraid” is more dangerous than merely calling someone HELLboy or dareDEVIL. The point is this: if you want to do something, do it for the right reasons and good conscience. If not, just label everything “U”.
Ah, back to Star Wars III. The hype surrounding this movie wasn’t as great as The Phantom Menace (maybe because fans are simply tired of the bullshit first two installments), but the early review sounded positive. Plus, the trailers were inspiring, promising deeper, darker action and less emotional drama like Episode II. So it was with great satisfaction that I managed to book some seats at One Utama on the opening day. It was an afternoon show, but I was still surprised at the amount of empty seats in front of me. It wasn’t half-empty, but it wasn’t THAT packed either. Could have been the timing, I’m sure.

I actually had to rush back from work that Thursday afternoon, but it was no surprise to find that, despite being 15 minutes late, the show hasn’t started yet. There’s Brad Pitt looking suave running away from reporters. I think beer ads are the greatest. Really. I hate to admit it, but I feel like I just had to have a Heineken. Thank God for his protection of my soul, or I would be drunk every time I watch a movie. Anyway, I don’t know if it was just me (or the dozens of people who suddenly decided that the afternoon would be a great time to bother me with their SMSes) but I just don’t feel it. The movie did not touch me. I had an almost emotionless experience. It was like watching some one-off action story and not the final chapter of what must have been one of the best sci-fi adventures in modern film history.

I can’t quite place what’s wrong with the movie. I mean, the CGIs are awesome, but that’s also a minus point for me. The whole movie’s too polished, too light and breezy, too beautiful. The acting’s not the worse I have ever seen, but again, it appears that technology has outshone the lead characters. The storyline’s acceptable, but highly improbable. Anakin’s turn into the Dark Force was too easy, too commercial. At the end of it, it’s like eating Ayamas. It tastes good, it looks good, but you just know the original Kentucky is much much better. (Trust me to equate watching movies with Ayamas..aiyahhh…)

By the way, you guys can forget about the MSN.Spaces site. It takes ages to load at other PCs. So I’m sticking by this one till it gets sorted out. Please leave signs that there’s people out there still reading my mindless crap:)

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