Monday, December 29, 2008

Rambo: Arcade Hands On


You won't understand what that poster is saying, but that arcade cabinet would damn well tell you that it's a Rambo game where you are John Rambo, the real lone soldier who killed too many damn soldiers during his missions. This is the real Solid Snake or Big Boss. And I lived for a few rounds to tell you what this is all about in the brief hands on.

The game takes you in various flicks showing clips from all 3 Rambo moives (Not including the latest one seen last year). Those clips would progress for you to play certain parts in the movie. And boy does it feel great.

The game employs Red Rambo and Blue Rambo. Either way, you are a badass. The Rage System gives Rambo a boost of invincibility when the meter is full and increased firing range and power when activated anytime during the game. You collect the power in the meter by doing speedy shots, multiple shots and headshots (Classed as Fast, Crack, and Heroic). And the power is really useful during the boss fights and during any part of the game when you feel as awesome as hell.

Certain times, you will be involved and prompted to do certain actions in the game. These segments employ precise accuracy on the shooting mechanics, as this is the part where I really loved a whole lot. If you've ever played the Call of Duty series, the zoom look would be familiar to you. Do it in this game (provided if the cabinet uses the Lindbergh system with the MP5 type of the gun.). You will be surprised how accurate it is. It works best when you need to use Rambo's Bow. And those scenes are also awesome.

My only gripe I'm thinking would be the soundtrack. Somehow, the Hip Hop beat doesn't really match that much. But still, I felt like a badass anyway by the gunshots.

I played this game until the 2nd Round, during the flashback for the scene in Rambo 2. During the play, everything was great in making you feel that you are Rambo. For those who are sick of me blabbering about this game, go find it out at One Utama on the Entertainment Floor. Every game costs RM2 per play. Have fun!

Bedtime Stories: Movie Review


If the stories tell you told came to life, what would you tell? If you were Adam Sandler, you'd want a Ferrari and 100 million bucks. Sadly, that didn't really happen for him, but his stories, did came to life, in miraculous ways, that it definitely was fun, despite some flawed scenes.

Skeeter Bronson (Adam Sandler) works as a janitor, or maybe more precise as a man who fixes a whole lot. So he's been given a duty by his sister (Hey Courtney Cox...) to babysit her kids. And based on how his old man loved to tell bedtime stories, so did he do so to the children. The coolest part was, they came true, in reality form. Now, he's supposed to be managing the hotel, but he isn't. But he got that shot all because of his story. Question is, can he get it?

Obviously another Adam Sandler movie means, more goofy and funny crap thrown at your face. But, this movie has a little family touch to it. So, children and adults alike would love the story and the scenes. I watched this with my GF and her bigger sister. And we had fun laughing at the movie.

The raining gumball scene was a flawed one if you can notice it. And then the later part another scene makes some odd choices on how to progress the story. The cool thing about this movie is how imaginative you can see the children can be, and then the story itself gets applied in reality context. That was actually a very cool way and also shows how stories and reality can end in a happy note.

The reality is harsh, that's for sure. But this movie succeeds in showing how reality can also help you understand that life is still happy if you can make it happy. Recommended for the family and the kids, this will make the adults feel like children once more, and the kids will just keep laughing. Enjoy. :)

Sunday, December 28, 2008

Ip Man: Movie Review


Ip Man was a man who resembles your next door neighbor, very friendly and charming too. Always humble and never goes overboard by being cocky and uptight too. A really friendly man. So, why does he adopt and teach Wing Chun, one of the most popular martial arts in the world?

Donnie Yen takes the role of Ip Man (I must strictly teach that you pronounce his name as yip mun) as the grandmaster of Wing Chun during the early days of the 1935, where Fo Shan was the best place to learn martial arts. Then the Japanese Occupation kicked in where every China man landed to poverty. So, how does Ip Man prevail?

The focus on everybody's mind would be the action sequences in the movie (considering the director is Sammo Hung). But the real one you should be looking at is actually the story. And let me tell you, the story and plot is fantastic. The pacing never bores you (coughdarkkinghtcough), and it truly is an eye opener. As a bonus, you learn what is Wing Chun itself.

I could say many good things about the movie, but there are still some flaws in some scenes. The factory scene has some flaws, but barely noticable. Some shots were done beautifully, but some were also not that great. The depression around the land was done beautifully showing how merciless the Japanese were during the past.

This is for sure a yes movie for me to watch it. So, I won't waste that much of time to tell yout o watch it. But, if you are interested to learn a little bit about Wing Chun, just read a little bit more. :D

Wing Chun was created by a lady. And the best part was, she used Wing Chun to beat a barbarian who wanted her hand in marriage. Ip Man was also one of the students who practiced most of his time with the "wooden man" while also being a humble and a family man. And I think most of us would already know he taught Bruce Lee about Wing Chun.

Wing Chun emphasises the use of the "wooden man" to understand the flow of the energy from the hands. The 3 points (2 above, and 1 below) shows the flow of the energy coming from a person (Based on the use of two hands and 1 leg. Obviously you can attack using two legs to one center point on the low area). The continuous blows should represent how women repeatedly attack in one place as a concenteration point. The harmony is achieve by understanding how to manipulate the flow of the energy from the 3 points. Well, that's pretty much what I can say about Wing Chun. The rest, is for you to discover. :)

Play-Asia is currently offering some very nifty picks for buying Ip Man. You can get the localized version at Speedy and also Rock Corner for a mere RM20, but interested parties of Blu Ray and special DVD editions should be thrilled with what's to offer. Release Date: 13th February

Ip Man Single Disc DVD Edition

Ip Man 2 Disc DVD Edition

Ip Man Blu Ray Edition

Monday, December 08, 2008

Los Dan Faun: Movie Review


When was the last time I watched a good Malay movie... Hurm... Let's see... Mukhsin I believe. Yup. That's it. So now, step aside kiddo, Los Dan Faun has taken your glory away and it demands a 2nd watch. Honest. This is really good considering it's a Malay film.

Los and Faun are two good friends from Melaka (Klebang to be precise) looking for a job in KL. Little did they know Faun has an ability that makes him aware of where missing items can be found. Even more amazingly is how he can pin every single source onto the evidence located. Then came to a glitzing watch owned by Soffar al Sogood (yes, that's the name) which is missing and the wife wants the 2 to find it back. Trouble ensues as Faun couldn't use his ability anymore and begins a search to unravel more clues to the mystery of the missing watch.

What makes this story great is actually the pacing and the placement of the comedy. Almost every 5 minutes I saw myself bursting with laughter, and still the story manages to go through well. Some scenes do look a bit flawed and doesn't really hit most spots (as in general comedic terms for this country) but it's still a great achievement nonetheless.

I can tell you that my gf watched this for a 2nd time and still she laughs at the scenes. She didn't spoil much of the story for me, but still I was able to enjoy it, even if she did spoil it. It actually even begs for a 2nd watch not only because of the humor, but how the ending is all tied up and made sense. But still, some scenes could've been a little bit more obvious to keep the audience guessing, and still would manage to make the audience feel that some parts were left out by them.

The careful analysis of Faun makes this movie worth it. The insurance people also contributed greatly to how great this movie is. Erra Fazira, is typical Erra Fazira. Afdlin is a little bit on the scenes, but that's alrite, the depiction works.

You should watch this movie if you love a good laugh and great pacing. Honest. I'm watching it again later, so I don't give much of a damn either way. So, don't be afraid if you lost something, cuz Los Dan Faun can surely find it for you. :P

Bolt: Movie Review


I think we have a good year of animal movies this year. First we got Kung Fu Panda, which was very entertaining. Then you've got The Dark Knight (hey, he's a Bat technically. :P). And now, Bolt, something from Walt Disney that is in no relation of Pixar at all. And it's lovely.

Bolt is a "superdog". Well, that's what he think he is as the director puts him in the show where he stars as a great superhero. In reality though, he's just another dog as usual. He gets loss in New York and must find his way back to his person, Penny helped by Mittens, the cool cat of the alley and that damn pesky hamster that stole the show.

John Travolta, great. Miley Cyrus, great. The rest of the cast, great. The story was also not bad at all. Just that some scenes felt a little too awkward to watch. That damn hamster is awesome. All his scenes showed how mad a hamster can be. And it was really fun. The ending, typical but works.

The shots were done nicely. The CGI is also good, considering the fact this is not a Pixar movie. I'd say it's really a fund experience to just sit there, watch how awesome Bolt is and how cute he could really be. Most memorable would be the begging scene, and it was pure bliss.

Watch this. Watch it with your family and have a blast. I didn't get a chance to go for the 3D version, but it's already great for me to watch the normal version. And remember, the superbark is private and confidential. :P

Wushu: The Young Generation: Movie Review


When you look at a Martial Arts movie, the first thing that comes into your head would be glorious coordinated fight scenes that transcends boundaries. So, what if you looked at Wushu: The Young Generation instead? Same idea, but not for me, as I understood what it was going to be. The problem is, the weak story and horrible directing does not make up for how the Wushu scenes make up to.

The story revolves around Li Yi and Li Er, 2 children that were raised to be great in the Art. They go to school and meet new friends and grow up together to compete in the National Wushu competition. Then, a villain pops in as a man who loves to kidnap children and ship them to various places. They meet, trouble ensues.

As I said, the story is a little bland and weak. The direction is worst. The young lads and lass were not that good in fact. But at least I know Sammo Hung is still in top form. He was more than redeeming. Most shots were not placed, and the scripting was also bad (Does a young lady ignore what an older man says to her? No, that does not happen when that man asks her if she wants to eat with his family and just becomes selfish. Bad move).

At least I'm happy to see Sammo Hung. Really. He has some fight scenes with him, and it was awesome to see him fight again. Who says age has taken away his agility and strength? :D

I don't recommend this movie. Really. Not if you're looking at at the story, or thinking that this is filled with fight scenes. But you should if you wanna see Sammo Hung and appreciate the art of Wushu. Now, back to the drawing boards and then go practice somemore. :)

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Impak Maksima The Musical: Theater Review


What do you do with a car on stage? Well, the only thing you can do is probably Donuts or 360s. And that was what exactly happened at yesterday's last day of Impak Maksima The Musical at Istana Budaya. The result, was definitely mixed.

The story revolves around DK, the guy who is the current Drift King. Along the way the story progresses to make DK go to battle with Ray, the antagonist, include love interest Ika and ends with the death of DK.

So there are only minor parts of the dialogue, and lots of parts for the singing. And to say about the singing, certain songs felt not so well, while some others worked like a blooming flower. The real stealers of the show are Dynaz, the guy portraying Amran, and Dina. The rest are actually, so so. Zul Huzaimy's parts are certain hits and misses. Zarina AF is also another.

The props are alright. Heavy with marketing (even the scripting) but still does well to generate some great looks. Lighting effects were also great, and also makes great use of the depth of the stage. One of the main problems, is how the story does not progress well and feels more like a love story rather than, a true blooded racing musical (which is actually achievable).

Though it was the last day, this review will serve it's purpose as a reminder. It is a great effort to put Malaysians into the theater scene, and I may only hope for further improvements in the upcoming plays from other directors. Though the story is weak, the price of admission would be worth RM20 or RM30 to get a real value out of the play. Good job, but you'll need more than just donuts to impress people.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Madagascar: Escape 2 Africa : Movie Review


I don't like to move it move it. Even though I moved it moved it. And then I laughed out on it. And I like to ah, review it! Surely this movie hits in some parts, but the impact the same felt with the first movie, which was a little more than a passing grade.

So Alex, Marty, Gloria and Melman wanna go back to New York. Turns out, they crash landed (It definitely was not kissing the ground with just a peck) in Africa, which turns out, to be the home of Alex when he was younger. Marty finds his, creepy herd. Melman becomes a witch doctor, and Gloria is out looking for love, in a very cool and convincing Moto Moto done by Will.I.Am. But problems arise, and the gang, still looking for a way home, is still getting into too much of it.

There's a case with comedy nowadays. If you've seen Disaster Movie, you will know how totally outrageous and blindfully dumb the comedy was, though it raked in millions. The same case applies here, but in redeeming quality this one actually does it way better. The dumb syndrome still persist, but scenes including new characters are practically the one that work best. Parodies were done in an OK manner, and as I've said, some scenes hit, some miss.

King Julien gets more air time, and his only performance that felt miraculous was the sacrifice part. Mort became more annoying, but still managed to be tolerable. The penguins are always over the top and amazing. While the main characters, probably Gloria and Melman work best. And the romance clicked too, amidst all the chaotic humor going on.

This will most probably make kids laugh for sure. Alex is adorable, Marty shows some spunk, Gloria punch things up in a beat, and Melman, though silent, works well in his scenes. So brings the kids for laughter, but just for their laughter. The average adult won't find much to attach themselves to, but it's a fun family ride when all of you are together.

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Quantum of Solace: Movie Review


The 22nd Bond movie is a sequel, which I believe has never been done before, more so the story being like a trilogy of some sort (Hollywood trend?). It starts with a big bang, but ends in a low note for practically everyone who watched the movie. It might not be as great as Casino Royale, but it still fits as Ian Flemming's James Bond.

After Vesper's death, Bond decides to pursue the people that were responsible. In vengeance mode, he stumbles with Dominic Greene, a man who has a very huge link to a corporation that even MI6 has never heard off. The story goes on to introduce Camille with her own personal vengeance, and the two may be able to pull it off just right.

People complained a whole lot that Bond doesn't deliver this time, because Casino Royale was way too exciting to watch. My dad calls it the lousiest Bond film ever, and my mother thinks it's just dull to watch comparing with Casino Royale. As for me, it has some great thrills, but ending on a low note without making us feel that there is more to develop on is what makes this Bond a bit disappointing.

And Bond this time, is a little more quiter than he was before. Perhaps it's a more wiser approach. Smooth and charming is the Bond label, and this one is almost accurate. Olga works as the new Bond girl, and she works pretty well. Gemma Artenton, though very brief, also works as the 2nd Bond girl. Mathieu, urm, sadly, does not look much evil. In fact, Le Chiffre was much more bad ass, and I grew to like that one better as a demonic evil enshrouded in a cunning face.

The rest of the supporting cast did great jobs. The shots were well made. the action was a little hit and miss, especially the climactic part that didn't feel logical. And they should've stuck with Bond using an Aston Martin. That car was made for Bond.

So, should you watch it? Well, if it's on a wednesday, then yes. The money paid in full wouldn't really do full justice until we wait for the 23rd movie. And so with this review, I hope the next director and his writers find a way to put Bond back in the limelight. Because I'd rather rewatch Casino Royale over, and over again.

Thursday, November 06, 2008

Tropic Thunder: Movie Review


What a sad state of shows. Not that this movie is bad, but there's only 5 screenings allocated for most theaters. Nothing more than 7 or 8 considering how great this movie is compared to Bangkok Dangerous. But nonetheless, this is a work of great humor with minor flaws indeed.

Ben Stiller goes director, writer and actor for this movie of his about 3 actors making a film about a "true" war story. After the director is blown up, they then believe they are still in a movie but actually against a bunch of terrorist in the jungles. that's where everything goes on a loose and kaboom.

Downey Jr. was fantastic of course. Playing as an Australian who went through a pigmentation operation to be a black man, he pulled off his role really well and brought me to tears with his humor. Black was fantastic, but didn't really feel fully utilised as an addict. Then there's Stiller, who worked well for the movie.

The shots were great, and the effects are cool. The scripting didn't feel cheezy, although 1 can understand why the word retard had offended a bunch of people. It was not properly censored, which of course ridiculous. And then there's Matthew McC0naughey and Tom Cruise. Matthew was sheer ridiculousness, which is of course very great. Tom Cruise is even more crazier. I can hear show me the money repeatedly in my head.

The problem was a few scenes felt hits and misses. Though some worked well, some others just doesn't feel complete and could have been developed further. What you see in the trailer doesn't really add everything into it. But still, this movie shouldn't be missed.

A screening on its own is great. But to go for a second I wouldn't really recommend due to censorships and all. So tell yourself that you lose 2 hands and fake about a war that you haven't been in, cuz Tropic Thunder will blow your hands, and stomachs off.

Monday, October 27, 2008

Bangkok Dangerous: Movie Review


There are many ways to call a typical action movie. For growing up kids like me, there used to be lots of shots and lots dead bodies lying around. And that's pretty much that. So that's what Bangkok Dangerous is too. Just the problem is a little bit lesser on the bullets though.

Nicolas Cage plays as Joe, a hitman who's too lonely as it seems in this remake of the Pang Brothers same movie and same title to it. So, he gets an assignment, to kill 4 men in Thailand. And he always plays by his rule. Well, until he got to Bangkok that is. Having Kong as a messenger, his life starts to go tumbling around him, and it even includes a romantic interest in the name of Fon. The tagline "Nothing's more dangerous than a hitman with nothing to lose" is actually a huge diversion to the whole movie itself.

The movie is actually about a hitman trying to be humanistic again. Being too lonely, he gets himself a student, which he actually thinks of him as a friend, though he doesn't say it. And then there's about love, where all of a sudden a hitman decides to reignite his senses about love. So yeah, it's actually a movie about that, rather than about a hitman on the verge of killing everyone who he doesn't really care about.

The action is ok. It's not bad, but it's better than Max Payne. But then the whole movie is a little confusing. It's actually about a hitman on revenge, or about a hitman out to be human? This is a really big problem actually. And then there's how weak it is to see the sidekick of the main villain's acting. It just feels a little dissapointing. And Cage, well he does some flaws, especially when he decides to go full blown with his enemy during the waterboat scene. So much for being a stealth hitman.

So yeah, though everything is done nicely in the other, the flaws i mentioned just makes it like another typical action movie, that I sadly can't even say for the action junkie. I didn't get my fix, that's for sure. But if you're interested to see plans executedly brilliantly after The Dark Knight, this should be good. And if you want to be a hitman too, go ahead, there's some lessons to be learned.

Saturday, October 18, 2008

Max Payne: Movie Review

When Max Payne came out for the PC as a game, it was brilliant. The story was top notch, the pacing was fantastic, and the action was great. Not to mention the signature jump-to-the-side-while-shooting-then-rolling mechanic that worked very well it's bullet-time feature. So, when I heard about the movie coming out, I was happy. Especially when Mark Wahlberg was to lead it. It turns out, it's another game to film adaption that did not worked well.

Max Payne is looking for the killer that killed his wife and child during a robbery. Along the way, he met dead ends. That was until, a recently gorgeous looking Olga Kurylenko was also murdered, proving there is a connection between his wife's robbery, and the recent case. Along the way, things get surreal. That is where things fell apart in this movie.

To blame Wahlberg won't be the right thing to say. Rather, the story hampered him down, which really shows in lots of scenes. The pacing was completely off, and I'm sure people wanted more of what can be seen in the movie. The nightmare scene is missing (which I believe would've scared all those 18 and above people as it did on me when I played the game) along with his signature jump. Though bullet time was there, but it wasn't used. Perhaps John Moore thought it shouldn't have to be used because lots of other movies already did.

The rest of the actors felt like hits and misses. Certain characters work really well, like Ludacris. But some feel totally off. Though Olga was short in this movie, I think she did her portrayal the best. That is even comparing to Mila Kunis' Mona Sax.

In 1 hour and 30 minutes, I was really wishing for things to go further. Why couldn't it have been 2 hours? What was the problem? There were many more scenes that can be included to make things work. But it's not here. It totally feels like an incomplete movie. A sad truth really, for gamers who would've wanted more action and more engagement to Max's grief.

In a way, I wouldn't recommend watching this movie. It didn't make me feel anywhere happy about it. It should be pulled back and redone again. It definitely could use a lot more pain and painkillers. At least homage to the gamers and the movie itself would've done justice for the whole franchise.

Monday, October 13, 2008

Flight of the Living Dead: Movie Review


Lets make a few things clear. 1, I hate horror movies. I hate getting shocked by scenes that makes my heart race to the death of me. 2, I hate how I can't anticipate what's going to happen and when it is going to happen.

Which is why this movie sucks.

I watched this at Astro 8 MONTHS AGO. That is if I remember it correctly, but I know it was way before it even got released in Malaysia. Story's simple, an aircraft is carrying a corpse carrying a virus that turns one into a zombie. Turbulence happened, and the people suffer. Simple. Like snakes in a plane, but this one has less story, less shocks, and totally is dull.

I said this movie sucks because of what viewers want. There's no shock. There's nothing creepy. And you already know what's going to happen in the end. Though the pace might be fine, everything else feels hampered. And don't get me started on those fright scenes with the actors. They feel lame enough.

Thinking of watching it? Get an Astro. Seriously. Avoid the movie at best. If you need a good place to sleep and snore in, the movie hall should provide ample comfort.

Thursday, October 09, 2008

Tekken 6: Arcade Review


After winning the Tekken 5 tournament, Jin Kazama takes over Mishima Corporation, and out of nowhere unleashes hell to the world. While G Corporation, seen as a savior to the world, steps in to help, lead by Kazuya Mishima. Father seems to be going at son for i'm unsure of what reasons, but the Arcade version of Tekken 6 doesn't really put any emphasis on story for each and every fighter. Rather, it's a time attack of sorts.

I had my rounds with Kazuya, and I'm impressed with the graphics. Even when it's displayed on a Sony Bravia 32 inch HDTV, which can only spin out 720p, it's still looks sharp and magnificent. The moves look fresh, and new moves are added into the foray, besides new characters.

The only problem worth noting is the excessive juggle system implemented. So, get your gloves in and prepared. You won't like it when someone flies you up in the air.

To walk you through the stages, you fight for 8 rounds, and then coming into the bonus round, which u fight against a big robot. Once the robot is done, The King Of Iron Fist, Jin Kazama presents himself and battles it out with you. After that, comes the real boss, Azazel, a sort of monster from some pyramid tomb.

I must say I enjoyed playing this. It's available at Sogo 8th Floor. You might wanna invest on Tekken 6 cards so to save your character and buy numerous costumes to put a little personal style to your character. Currently, the price for 1 game cost RM1, for 2 tokens. And the card costRM15 each. So have a blast while you still can. Jin awaits.

Wednesday, October 08, 2008

Yakuza 2: PS2 Review



The cover you're looking at spells Ryuuga Gotoku. In translation, it means "Like A Dragon". But in the USA, its easily called Yakuza 2, the sequel to one of the best games ever made for the PS2. And this one, definitely does not dissapoint.

After the events of the first game, Kazuma Kirryu now lives with Haruka in somewhere faraway from Kamurocho. One day while visiting Shintaro Fuma's grave with Yukio Terada, Terada gets shot from the Go-Ryu Clan. The clan is lead by Ryuji Goda, who dislike the fact that he is called the Dragon of Kansai, and wants to be the sole Dragon alive. Elsewhere, a mafia is resurging, and everything happens to pull Kazuma back into the game.

The graphics, a little bit better than the previous game. The sound and music? Still top notch as ever. The story pacing and plot? Totally outrageous and ingenious. The missions? Over abundant and well worth playing. That's the gist of the game that makes it deserve already a 9.5 score for me, but the best shining and a little bit of a silly in part, is the game play.

As a Yakuza, u beat people up. With your barehands. And it has never felt more satisfying ever since the first game came in. This version takes thing up a notch by introducing a few new items to tweak with, but with perhaps some minor frustrations.

I liked how Kazuma was slow when he was in the first game. A friend of mine (Why) stated that the slowness made him feel like he's a walking tank, and I agree. The 2nd version makes him feel speedy, like some kung fu master instead of a tough Yakuza. And in all honesty, that's the only problem i felt that i encountered which was unsatisfying to my experience.

Finishing the game unlocks hard mode, which I will visit soon for completion purposes. This game can be said as GTA, though it might feel limited as u are unable to cruise over town with a car. But the missions, the experience, the life of eating, drinking, going out with hostesses shows that there's a lot to do with Yakuza. This is definitely something we've wanted from Sega after the years of waiting for it to be converted. Now, where's my Shenmue? :D



The Score: An awesome 9.0/10.

Tuesday, October 07, 2008

Megaman 9: Wiiware Review


You don't wanna be in that situation, but this is what you will most probably see most of the time while gracing Megaman 9. And let me tell you, to sum up the value of the Wii Points spent on this, is truly pure bliss.

The story itself is simple too. After peace was restored, all of a sudden all robots made by Dr. Light, or Megaman's creator all went haywire. Dr. Wily accused Dr. Light of doing so, and now wants to save the world instead, that is if you help him fund his bank account. Sensing amiss, Megaman then goes to investigate, in full 8 bit glory.

Now, I did say glory, so the graphics is definitely out of the question. Besides, Capcom decided to go back to 8 bit, and released it in 360 and PS3 too. And still, it's more than worth it, in my honest opinion, to be in the Wii.

Control is very simple. You use the Classic Controller, or the Wii Remote held horizontally, which would be homage to us gamers of the 80's. You jump and shoot, and make way to the boss. Rinse and repeat. No dash, no charged shot, no fancy armor, just Megaman, and his trusted weapons, owh and a few more little goodies thrown in.

This game has a to do list for us gamers to earn bragging rights, besides posting time attack scores. That and collecting bolts in the stages allows you to buy E tanks to help fight the game further, and even unlock classic costumes. There are additional content downloadable, so make sure not to miss the Protoman content, it makes the game tougher.

Speaking of tough, this game is just about it. It's so tough that you know you'd throw the controller to the TV. But the reward of beating it, and it is Megaman classic, just makes it well more worth it for the 1000 Wii Points spent on.

Glitches of the old are definitely there. you'd see annoying enemies pop in again and again when you decide to turn back, and in fact even killing bosses without having to lift a finger. Such things do happen, but hey, it's Megaman, what's the point of fighting bosses without working out?

In all honesty, this is 1000 points well spent. In fact, the value is more than enough to compensate for the points spent. For gamers, let not the 8 bit graphics fool you. This game will take you spinning in circles until you know that beating the bosses again and again, is why you decided to take on Megaman 9. Long Live 8 Bit GRAPHICS!

The Score: A great 9.0 out of 10.

Sunday, August 31, 2008

Break Time!

In conjunction with Ramadhan, RaRiRuReRo will be taking a break for the month's period. I will be helping out my father with daily work. I would like to wish all my readers happy fasting.

I will be coming back to write on Bangkok Dangerous and Tropic Thunder. September might not have much to look forward to, but don't forget to catch Mamma Mia! and Money No Enough 2. Seems to have a good amount of praise to it.

So to all, have a great day! :D

Thursday, August 28, 2008

Kyo's Mini Game Mart

The shop is currently going but this page is still in beta mode. Once the next music album list is completed, then this should come up and running. :)

The Consoles?
Drooling for consoles? Here ya go!

Nintendo Wii US (With Official 1 Year Warranty)
=RM 1299 (Highly negotiable)
Bundle with a Wii game and get cooler discounts!

Nintendo DS Lite Console (With 3 Months Official Warranty)
=RM 570
Bundled with Grand Theft Auto: Chinatown Wars for RM 679.90!

Games Games Games
Need games to whet your appetite? LETS GO!

PS3 Games
Resident Evil 5 R3 = RM190
Guitar Hero: Metallica R1 = RM 175


Xbox 360 Games (NTSC-J Games Only)
Street Fighter 4 = RM 190
Guitar Hero: Metallica = RM 175

Nintendo Wii (US) Games
Rune Factory : Frontier = RM180
MadWorld = RM180
New Play Control Pikmin = RM180
Final Fantasy Crystal Chronicles: Echoes of Time = RM200

Nintendo DS (US, unless notified) Games
Guitar Hero On Tour: Decades Bundle (Includes Grip) = RM 200
Fire Emblem: Shadow Dragon = RM130
Puzzle Quest: Galactrix = RM130
Avalon Code = RM130
Trackmania DS = RM125
Grand Theft Auto: Chinatown Wars = RM 120
Final Fantasy Crystal Chronicles: Rings of Fates = RM 140

PC Games
Unavailable.

Want more items? Inquire me at kyoyagami10@hotmail.com now! Terms and conditions apply.

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Music Albums For Sale!

Here is the list of Music Albums for sale. And we are now open for business!

They start from Rm5. Some sealed, some not, but all new albums. :)

RM5 Category
-Moby: Last Night
-Sex Pistols: Kiss This
-Jamie T: Panic Prevention
-Grand Avenue: The Outside
-Petshop Boys: Fundamentals
-Selamat Pengantin Baru -Various- (Karaoke with Original Vocal)
-Kugirama Greatest Hits of Pop Bands
-Keri Noble: Fearless
-Jericho's Jeans: Loose Fit
-Sebastian Bach: Angel Down
-Meet The Robinsons OST
-Letoya
-Wiredaisies: Just Another Day
-Basement Jaxx: The Singles
-Caecilie Norby: First Conversation
-Dr. Dre: The Chronic
-Disney Channel's Jump In! OST
-Spice Girls: Forever

RM10 Category
-KT Tunstall: Drastic Fantastic
-The Chemical Brothers: We Are The Night
-J. Holiday: Back of My Lac
-Dave Koz and Friends: A Smooth Jazz Christmas
-Kylie: X
-Radja: Aku Ada Karena Kau Ada
-Ferrero Rocher presents Modern Love Song
-The Kooks: Konk
-Jesse McCartney: Right Where You Want Me
-Hannah Montana: Songs From and Inspired by the Hit TV Series

-Hannah Montana 2: Meet Miley Cyrus
-Hannah Montana 2: Non Stop Dance Party

-Jamelia: Superstar-The Hits
-Kelis: The Hits
-Korn: Unplugged

-The B-52s: Funplex
-The best of Vanessa Mae
-Chingy: Powerballin'
-Chingy: Hoodstar
-Wow! Just R&B Ballads (Malaysian Artistes)
-First Kiss (Love Songs Compliation)
-Spice Girls: Live at Wembley Stadium (2 VCDs)
-Spice Girls: Greatest Hits
-High School Musical 2 OST

RM15 Category

-Coldplay: Viva La Vida
-High School Musical The Concert (CD+DVD)
-Keith Urban Greatest Hits (CD+DVD)
-Scorpion No 1s. (2 Disc album)
-North: Straight Up (CD+AVCD)
-Disney Greatest Love Songs (2 CD Compilation)
-Michael Learns To Rock: Take Me To Your Heart (CD+DVD)
-EMI Top of the Pops (2 Disc Compilation)
-Simon Webbe: Sanctuary (CD+AVCD)
-Lite FM Presents Voices (2 Disc Compilation)
-Jesse McCartney: Right Where You Want Me (CD+AVCD)
-Best of Blue: Special Limited Fans Edition (2 Disc Album)
-Chenelle: Things Happen For a Reason
-Lenny Kravitz: Love Revolution
-Jesse McCartney: Departure
-Spice Girls: Greatest Hits (CD+DVD)

RM20 Category
-Chenelle: Things Happen For a Reason (Autographed)
-Marie Digby: Unfold (Autographed)
-Duncan James: Future Past (Autographed)
-Michael Learns To Rock Ultimate Collections (2CD+VCD)

Purchases of more than RM20 will net you a mystery CD! Rm30 will get 2 mystery CDs! While stocks last!

Note:
1. I do not have any other titles besides this. Do not ask me for any latest titles as I do not have them. What you see here, is what you get.
2.Once it's gone, it's gone. There will be no restock. I will add if I'm able to find more titles that are stored within my house.
3. Leave your contacts in the comments section along with what you are looking for. I'll get back to you through email or sms. Thank you. :)
4. Reservations of more than 4 days without being purchased will be booted immediately.

Merchandises, collectibles and various items will be posted soon. Thanks for reading! Contact me at kyoyagami10@hotmail.com now!

Thursday, August 21, 2008

You Don't Mess With The Zohan: Movie Review

Should you mess with him? Not really. And when I say that, I do really mean not really. It's basically Adam Sandler once more in a movie. The thing with Adam Sandler, is he is ridiculously funny in his movies, but his aren't any milestones to achieve about. Yet, if you're looking for a good amount of laugh, this one is still good either way.

Zohan is sick of his life as a counter terrorist for Israel. The thing here is, he not only wants to quit, but wants to work with Paul Mitchell as a hair stylist. better yet, he even keeps a book of Paul Mitchell's hair styles and decides to do the avalon on himself after he fakes his death. Taking the name of Scrappy Coco, he doesn't make it to become Paul Mitchell's stylist, yet for a small town beauty salon owned by Dalia (Emmanuelle Chriqui). Not only does Scrappy Coco gives hair styling, but also.. some... extra... services, purely sexual to his old customers. But soon, people know who he is and things start ugly. Not to mention a guy named Waldbridge who wants to destroy the community and make a mall out of it. Will Zohan prevail?

The movie is a little uneven at times. Certain parts of it looks too serious, but certain parts truly blows your head off. It's nicely scripted if I may. And the main message serves to be there. Why do we need to have a war? Lets all live in peace. Why not? The acting is fine and ok, just the pacing is a little uneven that dampens things and makes us feel hard to catch sometimes.

If you adore Adam Sandler, this is a great movie for you. Otherwise, I'd rather you go for something like Forgetting Sarah Marshall instead. But definitely not in the cinemas. With this slapstick comedy, you'd know this movie to give good amount of fun to you. He'll definitely blow you away.

Back To Love: Music Review

If you've been to Rock Corner recently, chances are you might have noticed that they are exclusively and currently selling an album entitled Back To Love In Bossa Moments. Either it's played or displayed, you'll find it hard to ignore the songs in this album.

It's a 16 track album boasting from some of the latest and all time greatest hits, but in bossa moments. Tracks range from You're Beautiful, originally by James Blunt, Don't Stop The Music, originally by Rihanna and even to Fly Me To The Moon, originally by Frank Sinatra, and also Burt Bacharach/ Aretha Franklin's I Say A Little Prayer For You. At a price of RM44 90, I think this is hard to miss, especially to fans of the Bossa genre.

I love this album. In fact, the moment I listened to the songs, I was amazed by the arangements and the tunes linked to it. Imagine that you could make Don't Stop The Music into something really soothing and felt a little bit funky to it, on par with Rihanna's own original. It's not surprising that this sort of compilation has done before, but the tunes selected were great nonetheless. Even the playlist was managed accordingly and personally defines how latest hits could even become so soothing to the ear, and perhaps for some made even better. Personal favourites for me would be You're Beautiful, Fly me to The Moon, Just The Way You Are, and Bleeding Love.

The album is exclusively available only at Rock Corner, For fans of Bossa, go ahead and pick it up. For those who like to cruise into soothing tunes reading your favourite books or enjoying your favourite cruise, don't give this a miss. It'll soothe your days away.

Monday, August 18, 2008

21: Movie Review



Winner winner chicken dinner. That's what you get when you have 2 cards that equal to the number 21 in a game of blackjack. But this movie is more than just having a chicken for dinner. It's about how to turn blackjack into a money printing machine. But make no mistake, the term of card counting-which heavily applies in this movie- has actually been seen before in the movie Rain Man. Go find that out.

Ben Campbell (Jim Sturgess) is a genius. 4 pointer all the way for us Malaysians. But for his standards, he's way beyond that. While wanting to write an essay in MIT for his Robinson Scholarship to get him into Harvard Med School, he found out that his lecturer, Mickey Rosa (Kevin Spacey) has ways to show him that blackjack might be even better then a 300k scholarship. Joining a team of bright students he learned card counting, the best startegy to play blackjack. From there, every single nerd's dream became true, at least, for a while. And yesm this is based on true events.

Jim portrayed correctly as a nerdy guy, and I was amazed at the character development actually. Yet, the latter moments in the movie i felt it was off. Kevin Spacey did strongly here, and I liked it very much. Overall, I believe that the only weak point here is audiences would've wanted to sample more of card counting. It was only 1 scene that showed how the system worked. Certain parts of the movie didn't really felt was neessary, so it was more of a filler to a 2 hour long movie. And I should also say that the script was nothing to boast about. It's too simple and felt queesy.

If you were looking for a gambling movie, this wouldn't be it. Best to keep watching that old God of Gamblers (the 1st one and the prequel mind you) and Casino Royale for much better depiction. But if you're interested in card counting, give this movie a shot. You'll come out the hall wanting to win big money then.

Sunday, August 17, 2008

Forgetting Sarah Marshall: Movie Review


The link in the poster here would direct you to a blog written by Peter Bretter (Jason Segel) on how he hates his girlfriend of 5 years, Sarah Marshall (Kristin Bell) for breaking up with him and leaving him for mega rock star Aldous Snow (Russell Brand). Peter then decides to go to Hawaii to relieve things off and met Rachel Jansen (Mila Kunis). Funny thing though, Sarah is also at the same hotel, along with Aldous.

The marketing is charming. In fact, find a comment in Sarah Marshall's blog that actually had a cool comment from Jason Segel. Now, many may not know him, but he's been a great actor in How I Met Your Mother and I admire wholly on his acting skills. This is no different. He's great, along with all the other casts. The storyline however was a little tad typical. It's probably another "we-know-the-ending" type of story. But the real deal here is, 1 big problem that truly hampers this movie from being great from where I watch it. Specifically, where I watch it. Other thing else, it's a fun typical love movie.

There were 2 choices with this movie, censor it probably or don't show it at all. The thing is, the board didn't do so. It totally pissed me off when watching this movie. Honest. I'd be fine if it wasn't here at all. But here, in a very unprofessional way of censoring things, they did go on with it. And the best part, it wasn't even properly done. I could see nipples dammit.

The jokes were lewd and dirty. Very. In fact, I was hopelessly sitting in a room where people didn't really understand them. I could hear my echo of my own laughs, and people hardly understood. A few of the audiences next to me and behind me did understand most of it. I don't mind people don't laugh at the jokes, but hey, it's life.

I wouldn't really recommend taking this movie to the cinemas. That is only because of the unprofessionalism. That's it. Otherwise, for a fun and dirty movie, it's fine really. An Ok movie at it's best due to it's typical nature. So, Forget Sarah Marshall at the movies. But do rent her. :P

Wall E: Movie Review


Wow! Pixar just made a love movie! No kidding. This is actually beyond the stereotype family fun oriented movie. But still, this one isn't so far from being a family fun oriented movie, but the romance in this movie makes it so worth it that it stands higher above other Pixar movies.

Wall E is a robot that was built to clean up man's biggest problem and issue, garbage. The Earth became a place that was so full of garbage, from 1 big company that people escaped from them, 700 years ago, leaving the job to Wall E's. That is, until 1 left. This Wall E only has 1 cockroach as a friend, and lived a very lonely life. Wait, robots know loneliness? Owh they do. And Wall E, is yearning for love. That was, until came Eve, a super highly sophisticated robot looking for plant life in Earth. And Wall E knows, his journey to find love, just got much bigger.

From Pixar, the humans who gave you The Incredibles and Rattatouille, they have not dissapointed at all. I must say The Incredibles was very fun, but Wall E proves that it can pull off so many fun and laughter out of us that it made things truly great. The animation is top notch, and once again, the detail is beautiful, something that Blu Ray nuts would love to watch. Since the scenes were computer generated, lets move to the story then.

It was a little slow. When I was about to just say "Ah this is..." it then brought life back up to the movie. This is the only problem with the movie. Nothing else really. The voice acting brought the character's to life with emotions. And the romance is truly something to behold. This is actually a typical love movie where boy meets girl. Or... lets say its robot meet robot. But because of that, it's not typical anymore. It's different. Way different.

Props to Pixar once more for this animation. It's truly great once things throttle up til the last scene. And you wouldn't feel that regret of paying the money for it. Well, nuff said for me. What else are you doing here for? go on! :D

Thursday, July 24, 2008

A How-To guide on buying a Portable Console

The portable console war used to be dominated by the Game Boy franchise, courtesy of how brilliant Nintendo used to bring out games like Pokemon. And then, Sony decided to come into the foray and make sure that they get a slice of the cake too. Hence the Playstation Portable was born. After numerous years of Nintendo's monopoly with the Game Boy franchise, the recent addition is the Nintendo DS, which emphasizes dual screen technology. So, are you hard pressed on choosing what to go for? Here's your guide.

Lets Introduce the 2 fighters first.

The Nintendo DS
You know, this console was reverred as a technical feat. An awe inspiring achievement way beyond anyone's own imagination. Under the flagship portable console line up launched by Nintendo, this one didn't need to have the name Game Boy to stand on with. The DS already means "Dual Screen". The console has seen a not so recent modification to it that it was called the "Nintendo DS Lite", a slimmer and sleaker version of the original. Being the top selling console (Out rivalling the Nintendo Wii even), this console has been great to fans in terms of fun and versatility. Providing mostly 2D graphics, and sometimes 3D, this small little machine emphasizes more on having fun with games through new ways of playing.

The Playstation Portable (PSP)
This was Sony's attempt at the portable market. And if you ask me, this one is more well received than the DS, in Malaysia that is. The appeal that this powerhouse brings is that the games, feels like your carrying a mini PS1, or sometimes the graphics could really still look like the PS2, just in a smaller scale. During the early launch, the console had a lot of problems, but it still emerged with great games to go with. 3D graphics with crisp cutscenes shows that this really appeals more to gamers who are opted for a mature look.

Since the portable goes more ways in functionality, lets do the intro here.

Functions
(Nintendo DS)
Honestly speaking there's not much to do with the DS. Its actually backwards compatible with Game Boy Advance games, but nothing earlier than that. If your in Malaysia, the DS would be quite limited to you. You'd only be able to download Demo's, provided you have a Nintendo Wii. And then there's Picto Chat, which only takes in a very small radius for people to scribble around what they want to write and do. At times, certain games can provide download play, which would mean during multiplayer sessions, only 1 person might need to buy 1 game cart sufficient enough to play full featured multiplayer mode of games. Iif you're bringing this to Japan, The States, be expected to have DS download stations that can provide you with Demo's of games and even maps and guides to places.

(PSP)
Perhaps the extra functions is what makes the appeal. You see, the PSP is great in lots of things. 1, the games appeal better than the kiddy like DS. 2nd, it's also a multimedia player, ranging from songs, to movies, and even slideshows of photos. On top of that, Google was recently included in the whole package to make websurfing a simpler task. There's even Skype connectivity for people to chat with using their PSP's connected to Wifi. Add on a camera for pictures, and then a GPS receiver to find out where you should go and so forth. And that's not even to mention that the games are quite a lot of fun too.

Games
(Nintendo DS)
Name the game. Any. You'd most likely find it here. No worries. From any type of genre to new types of genre's. You're bound to see it here. The focus though is more to people friendly games. Still, there are some mature games for the DS, but nothing so controversial and serious, yet. The recently announced Grand Theft Auto: Chinatown Wars might seem to be getting a mature rating, and the current market selling title Guitar Hero On Tour proves that the focus is slowly garnering more attention from more gamers around. Fun and friendly is the theme of the DS, but don't be surprised to find some titles that appeal to you too.

(PSP)
The crowd stunner. This portable lacks too much, that it doesn't even have a GT title for it. Very very shocking. But with titles such as God of War, Ratchet and Clank, Daxter, Tekken, the portable actually has a lot to offer, especially when we noticed that the GTA series goes in full 3D here. The Metal Gear series is also as great as they were before, sprouting out in full 3D. Perhaps the focus of 3D games has kept this portable going and still is. Owh, I almost forgot Monster Hunter. That's a cult.

Verdict?
I can't say which one is the one that you must have. Rather, I'd go with what appeals to you best. The DS is purely for gaming. True fun and truly gruesome to play with. Some games may challenge how great your surgical skills are, following the rhythm of beats, and even how to make food. This one has a lot of things going for it for sure. The PSP however is more centered as a multimedia player. The focus of this item is to have you playing games on the go, and if you're bored, whip out a show or movie and enjoy. Load in some great songs and listen as the PSP emenates some great tunes. For a mature and more adult like experience, the PSP is yours. For the fun loving, witty charming and humor cheerful, the DS is your pick.

What did I go for then?
My choice was an obvious DS. I choosed to get this because I felt like I need to redeem myself for not buying a GBA, and then I so wanted to play something with a touchscreen. I'm actually still waiting for the Mystery Case files to come, since its still a search sort of thing. hehe. The DS has given me a great time when i'm Mario Karting with my friends during my monthly gaths, and Clubhouse games brought me smiling more. That and the usual chicken buffet I love. haha. The DS has not dissapointed me at all. And I'll continue to play it until I get my PSP, which i will then juggle between the two.

Monday, July 21, 2008

Red Cliff (Part 1): Movie Review


This was a tough poster to find. Really is. Perhaps much more tougher than the one for The Dark Knight I showed. So now, lets play a game. Its called, "Count the White Doves in a John Woo movie" Haha. Knowing John Woo, he loves the doves so much that every movie he'll need them. But does it make the movie any better?

Synopsis
The story is loosely based on the Romance of the 3 Kingdoms. The battle of Red Cliff is the focus here, but with some surprising modifications to the story. As Cao Cao (Zhang FengYi) advances with his army to conquer the Wu territory, the forces of led by Liu Bei having suffered defeat is looking for an alliance with Sun Quan (Chang Chen) under the guidance and consultation of chief strategist Zhuge Liang (Takeshi Kaneshiro). Teamed with Guan Yu, Zhang Fei, Zhao ZhiLong/Zhao Yun (Hu Jun), the alliance led by Zhao Yu (Tony Leung) will go to war with Cao Cao's forces along with the help of Sun ShangXiang (Zhao Wei). Though people may not know why Cao Cao waged war, it is all actually due to Xiao Qiao (Lin Chi Ling), the proclaimed "most beautiful woman in the world". Will Cao Cao prevail? Or will the wind blow to the favors of the alliance?

The Cast
Tony Leung is back in a John Woo film. I liked how he did his character in Hardboiled, but this one feels a bit cheezy then standard. As a calm and strong viceroy, he displays the exact characteristics with a few minor setbacks during a few scenes. Takeshi on the other hand shouldn't be so well perceived either. The master strategist during that era should have been more calm, and less worried. Still, his performance is something to appreciate on a good degree of praise.

The supporting characters were great, but still possess some minor setbacks. Most notable and somehow surprising was actually Guan Yu and Zhang Fei. The 2 actors were somehow truly felt as if masters of the art they are on, especially with Zhang Fei. Liu Bei was also a setback, but perhaps we was actually somehow overshadowed by the presence of other big name actors. Zhao Wei and Lin ChiLing provide great eye candy with their Ok performance.

Presentation, storyline, sound, setting
Without a doubt, China's most expensive film truly delivers. The sets are amazing and truly a spectacular to look. The shots taken were all to emphasize on how brutal the Chinese during that era, and to show how tough was it all to build such beautiful monuments and fortresses to go with. Truly a high budget exprience to be held with. The story however, is actually a dissapointment. The quest for a man so obsessed with having a woman was more than enough to lead a whole army to war, which is by far ridiculous, even if it is in the oldern days. We believe other movies have done this correctly, but this modification doesn't truly fit with the whole epic story that was passed on to us. The dialouge proved to be amazing, and carefully made. The soundtrack and score are however amazing. Truly fits the setting that was established and brilliantly composed. The shots taken on the characters were somehow reused over and over again until it felt abit cumbersome to watch. There were some things that felt a bit off indeed, especially on how the people were acting.

Extras
I can't help but note that this serious war movie, actually hit the best notes when it came to jokes. It manages to take away the violence and cruelty of war that is very daunting and totally depressing to be seen. Despite this, there were lots of things that didn't really click in this movie, but perhaps there is a major reason for that. This is after all, only the first part. In fact, even audiences didn't think that this would actually have a sequel coming soon. Sadly, we're unsure of how soon.

Overall
The Art of Sun Tzu was used for war, and now its used for businesses. So how does John Woo pull this off? By doing a Sun Tzu for the modern era. For a war movie, it does hit the correct notes. But the acting is truly a bit hampering. I'd recommend this movie to see tactics of war by the Chinese, and also to see that this movie should also take a step back and chill with the jokes. Must watch wouldn't really cut it, as The Dark Knight is more fitting. This is only the first, lets hope the next one ties it up on the Red Cliff.

Sunday, July 20, 2008

The Dark Knight: Movie Review


Note: If you're deciding whether to watch or not, just go and don't waste time. But if you wanna know why, keep going.

I find this poster to be the best there is. No doubt. Look at the psychotic ways of making an image. And look at all the words around it. You may feel familiar with the quotes as most of us
watch the trailer multiple times already. Yet this poster truly cuts the cake on being psychotic. The pencil is also a noteworthy feature to be mentioned to further illustrate the focus on the Clown Prince of Crime's madness and insanity. You don't write with a pencil like that.

Synopsis
After Batman's/Bruce Wayne's (Christian Bale) successful romp on clearing Gotham City of the powers of the crime scene, a new criminal has arrived. Someone who truly, believed by Batman to be a nuisance to deal with. That particular criminal is The Joker (The late Heath Ledger). Nuisance is a word The Joker doesn't respond well to. So now, the two come in heat with one another to signify a presence unlike any other cop and robber type thing had happened before. With Batman helped by his butler Alfred (Sir Michael Caine), CEO of Wayne Industries Lucius Fox (Morgan Freeman) ally Leiutenant Jim Gordon (Gary Oldman) and a new friend Harvey Dent (Aaron Eckhart), the team face off against one of the most notorious criminals ever. Though, not surprisingly, a love interest is still there in the presence of Rachel Dawes (Maggie Gyllenhaal) and she seems to be the love interest of both Bruce and Harvey. Who will prevail in helping out Gotham cleansed of the worldly problems? And what will happen to the Joker? That's for you to find out.

The Cast
Now Christian Bale is talented. Very. And he proves it again that the role was suited exactly for him. So, comparing it with Batman Begins, there's really no difference as the character is still the same and he provides the excellent characteristic for it.

Aaron Eckhart was also brilliant. In fact, I had believed for once that he would be a breakthrough in this movie, but to take this one into the books, is to really have given such high expectation for it. He brought my expectation higher. Much higher than I could've imagine.

The rest of the supporting cast were making roles as their own. Hard for us to provide someone else to replace the characters in the movie indeed. Casting Maggie was perfect. Much more better than I could've asked for. Michael was perfect, so was Morgan, and so was Gary. The vets definetly made their move a whole lot.

So, the star of the movie is Heath Ledger then. No? Of course, we can say this movie is all about the Joker indeed (that is, another spoiler not truly unearthed, yet), but to cast away Batman and the others, well, Heath did just that. This was beyond anything an actor could do. Portraying insanity is not simple. It is by far one of the most challenging, toughest, and mind consuming effort to pull off. Don't compare this with Jack Nicholson, this Joker is beyond anything. It seems understandable how hard was it for Heath to sleep at night. This role can give any actor nightmares and truly sleepless nights. And all the dialouge, made it so prevailing that it could actually drive someone, to truly do what the Joker has done. Props to Heath for his final performance, this is by far the greatest.

Progression, storyline, sound, setting
If you ask me, the story is great. The dramatization is pitch perfect. We could see Bruce struggling with the world he is in. Between love and justice, he still is human, wants what he wants. yet between duty and selfishness, he knows what to choose, and he has to. The sets were great. And apparently, Batman isn't just a caped crusader for Gotham anymore. See him flying to places you could've least imagined to go to. But there is a bit of a problem here. Though this is a drama, and the fact it is Batman, the pace is slow. It didn't manage to suck me in as it did with Batman Begins. That one was easily a winning score because it could make you feel that you shouldn't leave the seat. But this one, there are parts where the progression is actually slow and a bit frustrating as people want it to progress fast enough that it drives us in to believe every single moment. The score is fantastic indeed. Perhaps that kept me going for a bit more.

Extras
It's interesting that certain people were also casted for short roles. Remember Cillian Murhpy? Well find him. He's there. Rumor has it that Michael Keaton is to be a cameo in this one, but nah, it didn't happen. The Batpod was an amazing touch to see how great a bike can really be. And the Batmobile? Find it out. The costume was given a sleaker look. It was abit leaner than the bulky suit in the first place. Yet, despite all that, it still surprises as to 1 loose end. Maybe you can spot it out without having me to say about it.

Overall Verdict
This movie is from Christopher Nolan. And he does not do sequels unless it proves to be great and succesful for the audience. This is to show what Batman Begins was, and I was hardpressed to have put so much hopes for this movie. It didn't bode well at all. Not to say it is not one of the best movies for Summer, but my hopes were too high only. Props to Nolan, and the rest of the crew that made the movie. Come to the theater with a simple expectation that the movie is worth it, and you will for sure enjoy. Props to Heath, this is your best and by far you brought this movie to be one of the best renditions of the Joker and perhaps the best Batman movie, and superhero movie ever.

Guitar Hero: On Tour : Nintendo DS review

The Guitar Hero series made its landmark on the Nintendo DS for the first time. If you know the series, it would mean that you know it is by far one of the most successful franchises from Activision coming out first on the PS2. After numerous expansion and sequels, we get the portable version!

A little Gripped
To play Guitar Hero On Tour, you'd need the Guitar Grip that has 4 fret buttons (Compared to the series initial 5 fret buttons). For gamers, they think it's much easier. But prepare to be wrong later. At first, we believed this to be looking comfortable and simplistic. Yet the real deal is that, this is really tough on your hands. The grip will make you hurt, if you play it for long hours and at the wrong position of your hand placement. If following the instruction given, it feels truly awkward, yet the wrong position makes your wrist hurt. Go figure. Another problem is that the fingers felt, as if there is no free air. The fingers pressing the button would feel a bit restricted and you might see yourself pressing the wrong fretbuttons with the wrong finger too (Such as the pinky going for the yellow fret button) .

Sound quality
The game itself has 26 songs, which is only 1/3 of the normal 1 game count of songs to play. Songs vary from Rick Springfield Jessie's Girl, to Jet's Are You Gonna Be My Girl and even Maroon 5's This Love. Obviously, some song choices aren't really rock material. But looking back, this is Guitar Hero, and i was begging for more blues in fact. Though the songs are nice, there is no bass. Awkward indeed.

Presentation
The animation and presentation is nice. The graphics are 3D, and the menu is simple to navigate across. It's nothing stylistic though, but adding album covers is also a nice feat. You won't see the characters having lip sync, obviously due to hardware limitation. but the animation really stands on its own as great looking.

Rock the Game!
To the gameplay itself, considering its Guitar Hero, there are 4 difficulties to go for. The progression of the difficulties, well, lets say that its as steep as Guitar Hero 3 was. The speed is definitely increased in hard, and so is the fret button count. The speed for expert is similar to hard, but more fret buttons to press on. So yeah, if your playing on medium, and wanna go hard, be prepared to be surprised becaouse it really is a bit tough on the edges. But with adequate practice, it should be more than alright. To play this game basically is to press the corresponding fret button and then swipe the DS's touch screen to pick the guitar. Star Power is activated by any button press (Easiest should the be the R button). Multiplayer is interesting but doesn't seem to be highly marketed considering the focus of this pack. But still, you won't go wrong with Face Off (Play alternate riffs), Pro Face Off (Play the same and see who's better on the scoring and combo), Guitar Duel, which is like 2 guys battling out who can do better on the guitar, and Co Op play, for the 1st player takes lead, and the other takes bass or rhythm. During the face off and guitai duel modes, you can use power ups to deliver the pain yo your opponent. Bring fire, or send a fan to ask for a signature, those are just 2 crazy power ups you could use to thrash it up.

Overall
The Guitar Hero was great for multiplayer fun, but it seems that this one really takes it away and gives more focus to a single player portable experience. If you can see yourself rocking at the bus or the subway, then this one works for you obviously. But the pain and the grip might turn you off from future titles, even if the sequel is promised to have lots of versions that players can trade among each other with. This stripped down version shows how much fun you could tak e off a game and try its best to put it on an exprience like no other. Good move Activision, but more R&D is needed.

The Score: 7/10.

PS: Credits to Penman for borrowing me his Guitar Hero: On Tour for the purposes of this review. Thanks man!

Monday, July 07, 2008

The King of Fighters 98: Ultimate Match : PS2 Review


How do you create legends? Some say it takes hard work and dedication, and some say its just pure luck. But this game obviously is the former, since for over 10 years after its released, the original game is still being played on emulators, arcades, consoles and so many more. If you are a fan of King of Fighters 98, you won't be dissapointed at all with this anniversary edition of the same name, replacing the Dream Match, with Ultimate Match.

I'm gonna do a favor to all for a moment. I will call this Ultimate Match only, because this is the same game but rehashed with so many new features added to it, and really fun to execute on. Looking back at other King of Fighters, all of them ties with themselves a story for each group (except for the 2002 edition). But this one was meant as a dream match. Put in 12 teams, put them in also in other variations and flavors, and you get a robust list of nearly 50 fighters packed in a 1998 game. That's a feat to behold, especially at that era. Fast forward to 2008, and now you get 64 characters in it.

We've got new additions for this game, so start with characters. Eiji Kisaragi, Kasumi Todoh, Wolfgang Krauser, Geese Howard, Mr. Big are just a start from the original cast. Add more variations for all the characters (including previous bosses), and it amounts to 64. Don't forget with backgrounds too, since they are also available. This game also takes back old backgrounds from previous games, and remake them to look so new that some are stunning to look at (Notice Goenitz's 96 stage and look at the wind spiral on the top screen. Be amazed).

The biggest addition however was the rebuilding of the modes. I mean, the power modes for each character. From previous Advance and Extra mode (which has been rehashed also), there is now an Ultimate mode for everyone to enjoy. Ever wanted to dash but build power like advance? here's your chance. The Ultimate mode emphasizes on customizing how you fight, in evasion and dash/run techniques along with the power you mode of your choice. It builds a different kind of strategy now. Even the Extra mode was redid to have a stored stock and easily activatable when needed (So that it doesn't have to be turned on when not needed). Really neat.
I remember the 1998 version for the PSX was a great game loaded with a robust galery at the time. The same is applied here, along with new stuff. From movies to pictures, to more art gallery from the Dreamcast version also, you'd be amazed that this edition compiled everything right for the fan.

There are some gripes though. Though the introduction and a few other songs were reinvented and remixed, most of the song retain their original score apparently. You could still hear the arranged soundtrack, but its mainly the same. I had wished for it to be more robust (Considering its an anniversary title), but I'm fine perhaps. the ability to input special moves with trigger buttons is all together gone, and my worst gripe was a very toned down difficulty. I loved the original 98 because it was punishing, and it thoroughly trained me to do better combos. But this one perhaps goes down a bit and would suit more crowds that love the game on a simpler approach.

There's online match, but sadly I couldn't test the mode due to lack of adapter for the PS2. As an added and perhaps the biggest bonus, you also get to play the original 98 game on the same disc. Though it is the emulated version from the Neo Geo board, this is by far also one of the best reasons to purchase this game considering that you get 2 games, a new and nostalgic version of it.

The gameplay is fluid, and you get new moves with most characters (Chin can now super you and make you drink with his wine, I got hit by one. And Clark has an awesome aerial catch and throw.) Most commands also had been refined and retuned (Be amazed with Orochi Yashiro's new catch. It's too fast.) for the better pleasure of playing and enjoyment.

For 10 years this game has stood against the tests of time. People still play it in aracades and challenge one another. A phenomenal and exceptionate game indeed for the fighting crew that only went against the likes of Marvel vs Capcom 2. For fans of the original, never miss this game. For fans of fighting games, this one will give you a robust experience indeed, and for all, this is one fighting game that you could really spend hours mastering each character. I would've given the original 9.5/10 score when I was younger, and now this title truly deserves my 10. Truly, have fun!

Saturday, June 28, 2008

Wanted: Movie Review


I was thinking this movie was to have Bon Jovi's Wanted Dead or Alive, but it seems that it isn't really necessary to fit with the movie's dark and entertaining theme. Indeed, this is an R rated movie to be kept away from kids, and definitely is the best one by far to be had in this summer. In fact, I think this is much much better than Kung Fu Panda (Though, I was not able to catch it myself today. Darn it.)

Meet Wesley Gibson (James McAvoy), an accountant manager sitting in a cubicle repeating the same thing in life over and over again with an annoying and cheating girlfriend, a very horrible boss and a double crossing best friend to top the things off. What a horrible life indeed, that was until he met Fox (Angelina Jolie), a trained assassin that helped him meet with Sloan (Morgan Freeman), the man behind the Fraternity, an association made for assassins to be trained to pull of hits on men all over the world. The motto, kill 1 and save a thousand.

Ever watched a Mazda drifting on the sides of a building? If you do, you've probably at least watched the trailer of Day Watch, the movie made by the visionary director Timur Bekmambetov. He brought Day Watch and Night Watch to life from the books, and now he did Wanted, which is so much better than the two. In fact, those 2 movies were already amazing that I thought this one was nearly incomparable.

The plot is really well crafted and this movie ties up what was needed. Though, there are some parts that are worthy of mention to further address back the lack of clear clarification. Perhaps a "i know why they did so" part of the movie. The script is great, provokes us to truly think of what is our real destiny. And the shots were great too, just that the flaws are so minor that you'd probably just ignore it considering the experience was already great enough.

James, this was a character for you. You were amazing in covering up your Scottish accent, and you really deserved this away from your role in the first Narnia. Angelina Jolie was smoking in this one, and if guys thought that her hot body was enough to buy a ticket for this movie, please do more than that and appreciate her role as Fox since she was really good in this. Morgan Freeman was great in his role. But I think his role in Batman Begins was the best by far. Still there are some quirky moments of Morgan's acting that made a lot of sense and made the movie much more entertaining. The cast of supporting actors were also great (They even had a Russian in there, haha.) and fits everything back in place.

I'm an action junkie, and I may attest this is a really worthy movie in comparison of other tough guy hero flicks. I was amazed by Len Wiseman's ability on providing solid action scenes in Live Free and Die Hard, but Wanted makes everything much better with a great story to boot and providing even crazier action scenes. The jokes are spot on, though perhaps in Malaysia, some of them aren't truly spot on to begin with for their taste. But still, the jokes work well.

We could really tell ourselves that we have a big relation to Wes. He is just like anybody else in this never realizing his true potential of what he may really be. Not to say that we are made to be assassins, but we have something deep within us that we feel is there for us to unearth. You could really see the struggle and remorse that you'll feel on Wes and bound to have you thinking of your own life.

Go watch this movie. Stop reading my review and go. From story to action, from running and gunning to crazy investions with mice, you will love this movie. To Timur, great job and great team. But 1 flaw, how come the gun didn't bring out the sound? Your hiding it? :P To end this, I would like to quote from Wesley which I think is the best quote I've heard in a long time.

"What the f*ck you've done lately?"

The Incredible Hulk: Movie Review


You will like it when Hulk is angry. But you would not like it so much on the other parts when Hulk is not angry. But still, it is encouraged to make Hulk hungry... eh, i meant angry. You'll find that joke when you see it. :)

Bruce Banner (Edward Norton) is a gifted scientist experimenting on gamma radiation. He was so sure that he'd found a way of making gamma radiation work for him, but everything obviously went wrong. So, he is now on a refuge to evade the army led by General Ross (William Hurt), leaving his beloved Elizabeth *Betty* Ross (Liv Tyler) and going against a new recruit English recruit named Emil Blonsky(Tim Roth), or the latter man known as Abomination.

This movie isn't a sequel to Ang Lee's Hulk. In fact, this is a new movie about Hulk, which in account already is the 3rd version of the movie parts (Spiderman was also filmed in the older days, where they had 2 versions of the opening. The older had lots of sequels.) Better yet, this is even better than Ang Lee's version. Sorry my friend, though you did do a good movie to me, but this one by Louis Leterrier has achieved a good level of praise. But, I recall hearing someone say it was as good as Iron Man, but I would really beg to differ.

The movie's plot is well portrayed. But it lacks the certain "oomph" to make it feel that we are sitting on the edge. The camera shots and angles were neatly crafted, but there are some loose ones in the movie itself. Like the chase scene, could've been done better with a bit more of positioning on the shots. The scripting was ok, and so so. But it gets to the job done well.

Ed Norton did good than Eric Bana, period. He portrays what we know of a scientist, scared of something within him and really is doing his best to get rid of it. His body frame and size makes it a really big contrast between him and the Hulk, which is great to serve as a man who is weak and small. Liv Tyler, hurm she could've done a bit more better on her expressions and tone of voice, but she still gets the job done as a leading lady. In my opinion, Jennifer Connelly could've taken the part back and made it better by a little bit. Tim Roth was a bit...confusing. I wasn't quite sure of how he got into the whole mess and really unsure of what his character is supposed to be. good or bad? mean or kind? justice or obsess? Try figuring it out for me. William Hurt, fits perfectly. Perfectly speaking, the man was made for this role as General Ross. He gives a show as a army man, and also as a father only wanting what's best for his daughter. Nuff said.

Action sequences were finely crafted, and the amount was what i was hoping for from Iron man. The action, for me was better than Iron Man. Jokes were there, and good too. The chase scene is a good display of military tactics but as earlier said the camera could've been positioned better. Louis told interviewers that he wanted the movie to have doors open. And surely he did, but some loose ends were definitely not tied, because they should have been at the very least.

If you've watched the old 1st version of The Incredible Hulk, you'll be happy to see Lou Ferrigno in the movie. In fact, he was helping to voice Hulk for the movie, and he did a great job on it. His voice and script would definitely make fans cheer. And with every Marvel movie, there's Stan Lee ey? This one too. So, have fun watching him ey?

I liked Ang Lee doing the 2nd version of the movie. It was an ok movie to me. But this one was much better in comparison. The incredible has arrived, and it is by far a great ride to the finish. But don't expect the ending to be satisfying, but it should leave you with a good amount of interest to see a better sequel.

PS: If I'm not wrong on this, do your best to make sure to see 1 last scene of General Ross drinking. And do watch Iron Man's last teaser to further understand what I mean. The man will be talking to the General, and lets hope for the best the next big movie, and I mean really big movie, will come. :)

Sunday, June 22, 2008

Get Smart: Movie Review


Have you ever seen Get Smart before? It was acted by Don Adams (passed away in 2005) as a very bumbling US agent who somehow manage to always makes thing bad at first and the best in the end. And that was the 1960's, and now we're in 2008 seeing the same by Steve Carell instead. And its a movie also instead. I got my chance today to really watch this, and it seems that I have a little bit of a edgy feeling to this.

The movie is about Maxwell Smart (Steve Carell of The Office fame) who has long enough wanted to become a field agent for CONTROL (honestly, I have no idea what does it really mean). He got his chance when KAOS (the bad guys) made a ruckus on wanting to blow up places and placing heavy interest with nuclear bombs. So Agent 86 (that's Max over there) along with Agent 99 (Anne Hathaway), Agent 23 (Dwayne Johnson) and the Chief (Alan Arkin) set out on a mission to stop KAOS from wrecking...erh... chaos...

Looking at the people who acted here, some hit the spot, while some don't. Dwayne was good as Agent 23, charming, good, witty and his acting really shows what tough guy really says. Alan did great as an old man wanting to kick young butt. Anne was basically doing an ok job if you asked, a bit pale in comparison with her previous performance in The Devil Wears Prada. While Steve, knowing how annoying and how mad he is, give a bit of a good job and sometimes not too good there. So, hits and misses.

The comedy is awesome. the jokes are really spot on. I'm a sucker for action, and also for comedy. But this movie doesn't really fuse the two well enough to make it a great treat. There are some parts that you wish the laughter should go on and not the action instead, but not vice versa. The plot is good at the start, but doesn't finish up too well in the end. The story does feel a bit loose at the last part, but still ok and perhaps forgettable in the end. Some camera takes could've really been improved, but overall its still an ok thing.

I see a good amount of reference to the old series, especially that shoe phone. Of course, the idea of a cell phone wasn't really accepted in the past, but it was a great tribute to see that shoe phone. haha. I was really hoping to use the posters of the faces being covered (perhaps except Steve's) for this post, but well that one should do. Ken Davitian, The Great Khali, Terry Crews, Masi Oka all made their appearances here and they look great as a supporting cast.

If you tell yourself that you want to knock yourself out watching a comedy with a little hint of action, here is that movie for you. But don't bank on having the loose ends tied, which actually did frustrate me a bit. But if you've enjoyed the trailers, I don't think you have much more to anticipate unless if you want to really see how foolish can a parody to James Bond be. So knock yourself out. :D

Friday, June 06, 2008

No More Heroes: Wii Game Review

Ever heard of someone toying with the idea of insanity in a game? Well, if you've met Suda-san, creator of the original Killer 7 series for Capcom, you'll feel that No More Heroes is exactly like being at home. Honestly, the psychoticness never ends. And that means its very good.

The game revolves on Travis Touchdown, the guy holding some kind of sword that emits light to it (in other words, a light saber. :P) He finds himself killing a some guy named Helter Skelter and ends up being number 11 in the rankings of Assassins. His goal, to only fight someone better than him, and end up as number one.

The game is very very different from any that I've encountered before, and it's a really great change to playing other standard action games (Remember God Hand? That was uber fun. :D). The game plays in third person view, and you walk around killing people. And somehow, also doing some side jobs like picking up coconuts, moving lawns and so on. Game reviewers have rated this game as purely psychotic as there is really no sense of playing this game, because it never made any sense. Besides, when was the last time a protagonist ever said he only wanted to be number 1? That is exactly where this game charms.

In battle, you'll fight using the A button. To stun opponents, go for the B trigger. The Wii-mote is waggled to do finishes, which are very very fun to do and look at the gore for it. The nunchunk is used to control Travis and also as a bonus for wrestling moves. Of course, it makes no sense again to do wrestling moves when you have a light saber right? But, it is a great move to use that when your opponent is on the floor, you can execute a downed kill by just pressing the A Button when it flashes on screen. And since its a light saber, you have to charge it when it goes low. What, you think it uses UV lighting? To charge it, erh, you need to waggle it left and right. But it also works if u, urh, follow what Travis is doing on screen. Do it to feel embarassed if you're a guy. :P The Wii-mote speaker is of good use as you can hear sounds of the light saber flashing, listen to the phone call by that psychotic lady, and other intersting little tunes that just works with the game.

The game centers most on killing, and that's it. It's fun to play some training games, buy some clothes, hunt for treasure, or cruise in the city with a big big big bike, and somehow it doesn't get boring.well, except for the bike part, but we'll get to that later. The boss battles range from great to awesomely challenging. Some are easy to figure, but I won't be surprised if you find yourself dying a few times, because the challenge is hard and worth it.

But, I should say that all good games do come to a bad point. The city feels, necessary and unnecessary. Necessary, because the treasure hunting and Lovikov balls make it so, and the un part, is because some locations are too darn far to travel. We also see lots of problems with the city as Travis could somehow skid to the left when he rams a car. And people don't splatter in blood. Man... The battle is spot on, yet some minor improvements could've been made on that baseball part.

The graphics are cel shaded. Just like Killer 7, Auto Modelista, Viewtiful Joe and so on. Yet, Suda-san wanted to use additional touches like pixelated graphics. And honestly, it looks awesomely charming. Ah, maybe I'm biased because I'm more of a pro pixel junkie, hehe. but still, even the sound sizzle as it reminds you of hearing tunes from the older days. Man, talk about nostalgic. The dialouge is good, but the lady needs to either be Japanese or French, and not both, because she sounds like a Japanese attempting to be French.

Overall, there are good action games, and then there's No More Heroes. This is obviously a good killing game that will last you for a good amount of time, along with being senseless and great to be certified for. If you could overlook the minor problems, you won't be surprised by landing yourself with the great game.

PS: Thanks to Corez for lending me the copy to review it. hehehe. :D Owh, and if you do get the game and want to get to the motel early from somewhere far away it, just fly into the river or sea, you'll get there back easily. :P