What Women Want (2011)

What Women Want (2011)
Director: Chen Daming

A remake of the US film of the same name. Andy Lau  takes on the role of the male (Mel Gibson) lead character and Gong Li takes on the female (Helen Hunt) role. While the overall story is similar to the US movie this new retelling offers up a different filming location, culture, and Andy Lau plays the advertising big shot as well as Mel Gibson did.

You can watch this on Netflix 

Additional Info:
IMDB page
Wikipedia Page  

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Comic-Con Episode IV: A Fan’s Hope (2011)

Comic-Con Episode IV poster

I watched this documentary a little while back. It’s all about fans, dealers, aspiring artists, all prepping for and ultimately attending the San Diego Comic Book Convention aka Comic-Con. The sections I enjoyed the most were Holly Conrad and her Mass Effect 2 costumes. Stan Lee and Kevin Smith appear in this.

Additional Info:
Official Site / Image source
IMDB page 


The Captains (2011)

The Captains (2011)
Director: William Shatner

This was quite the eye opener. William Shattner interviews the other main “Captains” from the various Star Trek series and even Chris Pine of the 2009 movie.

  • Patrick Stewart – Jean Luc Picard (The Next Generation)
  • Avery Brooks – Benjamin Sisko (Deep Space Nine)
  • Kate Mulgrew – Kathryn Janeway ( Star Trek Voyager)
  • Scott Bakula – Jonathan Archer  (Star Trek: Enterprise)
  •  Chris Pine – Star Trek (2009 movie)

They discuss things such as previous knowledge about Star Trek, Experiences filming their respective projects, life after Star Trek. Fans and conventions. The moments between William Shatner and (Sir) Patrick Stewart  were quite interesting. At one point William Shatner is sitting in a box waiting for one of the other Actors to arrive.

The documentary is currently streaming on Netflix, Amazon VOD or on physical disc.
Additional Info:

Wikipedia page
IMDB page
Netflix page 


In Time (2011)

In Time (2011)
Directed by: Andrew Niccol

I saw this movie last year. The main thing that drew me to see the film was main concept. In the future,  people live in a world where you spend  your life/time  as currency for goods and services. Rich folk store time in electronic bars.  When you run out of time, you die on the spot.

Justin Timberlake was alright as the lead in the film.  Cillian Murphy was interesting to watch as the Time keeping agent, chasing Jistin Timberlake down throughout most of the film. It’s ” Rag to riches” and “fugitive on the run” in one movie.

Additonal Info:
Official Website
IMDB page
Wikipedia Entry (contains spoilers)


Thoughts on Batman Arkham City

Batman: Arkham City (2011)
Developer: Rocksteady Studios
Platform: XBOX 360, PS3, MS Windows

Batman and Catwoman'

This is the best Batman I’ve played so far.  The open-world sandbox of Arkham City provides  the player a far more open space to navigate than the previous game. The way it start  was pretty cool for a tutorial section. Allowing you to do some damage to a high-profile Batman villain.

You play through the main campaign/story mode as Batman.  With Alfred, and Oracle in your head via a comm device.
As I was  playing though this game it reminded me of Batman Returns for the Super Nintendo in some ways. The locations vary You’ll  be inside buildings, out on the streets, in the alleys, on rooftops, near water,  below and high above the streets of Arkham City.  One section near the start of the game reminded me of the 1989 Batman movie. The game autosaves every time you enter or exit a building, destroy certain things in the environment. You are treated to a slideshow of  your current mission objectives and recent plot developments when you continue your game.

The City does have its boundaries. If you try to glide over them (using the grappling gun), you get treated to sequence where Batman evades anti-air gunfire! Batman Doesn’t like water either, especially at one point where a shark is waiting for you.

Catwoman, Robin and Nightwing are playable in Riddler’s Revenge mode (Combat challenge maps as paid DLC). Catwoman has her own set of Riddler trophies to collect and upgrades. I’ve only seen a few Youtube videos of the Catwoman story missions.

The combat is still as fun as the first game. Batman does melee attacks with a single button, add the ability to use gadgets and the cape then.  Jump kicks, slide kick, glide kick, knuckle beatdown, silent takedowns. Inverted and ledge takedowns, There are breakable items in the environment ( glass windows, boarded up walls, fire extinguishers) If you fight a large group of enemies, you have a chance to get a higher hit multiplier, while splitting them up by silent takedowns or by using gadgets gives you a better chance of clearing an area filled with enemies.  Detective mode helps you to I.D. and prioritize targets, and other things in the area.

You get XP by knocking out opponents. Bonuses are rewarded for getting a high hit multiplier,  intimidating/scaring enemies, using different gadgets, attacks, and for different methods of knockouts. There even some combat challenges such as having batman catch his own batarang. Other ways to get XP are by destroying Joker balloons, Tyger cameras, Joker teeth and Harley Q  heads. I had fun with the Boss battles Even though I had an especially difficult time with the armored man of chill.

As you go through the game. You will face off against opponents, armed  with only their fists,  Assault riffles, Sniper rifles, shotguns, knives, swords,  bats, pipes, chairs, crates,  grenades, riot shields, shock sticks,melee armor, Hammers. Fights can be one one or many versus one. Guns pose a great threat to Batman even with the optional armor upgrades.

It’s not all about the combat. There are Riddler trophies to collect with the help of your various bat gadgets. When you enter a specific area of the city any unsolved Riddler clues are displayed on the screen. These text clues are solved by  “quick scanning” the environment. The reason why you want to collect these Riddler trophies is because they unlock combat and challenge maps for the Riddler’s Revenge mode, 3D character models, concept art. Readable stories are unlocked by solving the text clues. Character Bios are filled out as you progress through the story and side missions.

I actually beat story mode (Normal) with a completion rate of 50%. Missing out on various side missions, and a ton of Riddler trophies and unsolved text riddles. There are a few side missions in the game. ” Stopping random Acts of Violence”,  “Search and Rescue” and “Search and Destroy”.  Learning how to glide and dive (Augmented Reality). I have yet to finish the second set of tests.

The fun doesn’t end when you beat the story mode. You can keep exploring Arkham City  to complete the side missions, get missed Riddler trophies and beat up some inmates. The game also has a “New Game Plus” mode. Replaying through the entire game with all your upgrades. I tried it and realized how much I rely on the counter-attack indicator. They turn it off in “New Game Plus”.

Kevin Conroy and Mark Hamil   are back reprising their roles as Batman/Bruce Wayne and The Joker respectively. I really liked all the idle chatter that the inmates talk about while you’re going through the game. They do loop if you wait long enough. For Anime fans, Steven Blum is credited as voicing various inmates in the game. I think the in-game music fits with the atmosphere. The rest of the voice acting cast did a fine job. Dialog was entertaining as well.

One little nitpick I have with the game is that the “Level Up” indicator blocks your navigation compass, forcing you to use the upgrade point, to get it  off the screen.

PC gamers with supported nVidia graphics cards will be able to use PhysX, just like the previous game. This adds more visual effects to the game.  Be aware there are some issues with the PC version

Spoilers!

Really good game, better than the first in my humble opinion. Being a Batman fan is not required to enjoy this one.

Additional Info:
Official site
Wikipedia entry (plot spoilers)
 Batman Wikia (plot spoilers)
IMDB page

Image source: Official site Wallpaper section


The Thing (2011)

The Thing (2011)
Director: Matthijs van Heijningen Jr.

A remake of a remake!
This is a monster movie for those who also love flamethrowers! Lots of snow, and death by monster. I enjoyed it, and like how they tried to respect the 1982 work. I definitely like the 1982 John Carpenter film more though. The movie features a strong willed female lead, similar to  films like, Aliens and Underworld.

 

Additional Info:

Official Site
IMDB page
Wikipedia Page (contains plot spoilers)

 


Chick-Fil-A Schaumburg, IL

Chick-Fil-A
935 East Golf Road
Schaumburg, IL 60173
(847) 517 -1173
http://www.cfarestaurant.com/schaumburg/home


This location had its Grand Opening back on the 15th of September (2011).  I paid the place a visit this past Saturday, after a recommendation from two people. I ended up getting the chicken (breast meat) nuggets, as recommended by one of the employees. I chose to go with a lesser order of 8 nuggets.  With An order of either the Nuggets or Chick – n – strips (tenders) you can choose a dipping sauce. They have:

Buffalo, BBQ, Honey Mustard, Buttermilk Ranch, Chick-fil-A, Polynesian and Tomato ketup

While waiting for the order, I noticed just how packed the place was with customers. Good thing we decided to take our order to go.  I really liked the nuggets even without  any sauce. From the first bite to the very last.   The Polynesian sauce just helped to add more flavors.