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Ahoy, squirts! Quint here with a big compilation of reviews from this year's Edinburgh Film Festival. Below you'll find reviews for Whedonite crack SERENITY as well as Lasse Hallstrom's AN UNFINISHED LIFE and GREEN STREET HOOLIGANS. Enjoy!!!

Hi again Harry.

Since I've seen little other coverage of movies at the Edinburgh Film Festival thought I'd drop you a mail on a few other films I've seen.

On a Clear Day

This is a UK based flick set in Glasgow about a guy, Frank (Peter Mullan), who loses his job in ship yards and struggles to find something to fill the void in his life and ends up deciding to swim the English Channel while attempting to get closer to his alienated son Rob and also the loss of his other young son years before.

Basically this is a feel good movie which I suspect the US crowds will lap up since its very much in the vain of The Full Monty. The cast all round are superb with Mullan leading the way, Boyd provides the main gags of the flick and is very much there as the funnyman which he excels at. It can be a bit one paced at times and I'm not giving much away by stating that it has an oh to predictable ending but it is a good natured family flick for all to enjoy.

Most of the lead cast were there including Peter Mullan, Brenda Blethyn and Billy Boyd, there were introduced before the flick but sadly didn't really do much but wave and didn't reappear after the film which was more than a little disappointing.

Kinky Boots

Another feelgood movie. This is another regional UK movie, set in the North of England around a shoe factory which has been passed down father to son, but when the latest father dies his son Charlie (Joel Edgerton) discovers that the company is in trouble and ends up shutting it down. While his fiance attempts to get him to sell up and get on with his life Charlie seeks an alternative and meets a drag queen, Lola (Chiwetel Ejiofor) who provides the answer in producing Kinky Boots for men.

Pretty straight forward flick which I think will probably appeal more to women than men with the whole shoes thing and the many musical numbers. The cast do their jobs ok but fail to really sparkle with a heavily underused Nick Frost being a disappointment, very funny guy, not so funny script.

Both leads were present and did a Q&A but due to the make up of the audience didn't realy get much more than "did the boots hurt" type questions... yawn... NEXT!!

An Unfinished Life

A gem. Pure and simple a terrific movie. This was the world premier of the new Lasse Hallstrom (Chocolat, Cider House Rules) flick, staring Robert Redford, Morgan Freeman and Jennifer Lopez. Sadly none of whom were present, instead we were dumped with an english actor Damien Lewis (Band of Brothers) which wasn't quite as interesting really!

The basic plot of this is J-Lo is a single mother, Jean, who is in a relationship with an abusive boyfriend (played by the aforementioned Damien), she has had enough so runs of taking her daughter Griff (played by the wonderful Becca Gardner) with her. Having nowhere to go she returns to her old town and to the father of Griffs dead father Einar (Redford). Einar lives in a small village with his lifelong friend and former worker Mitch (Freeman) who is disabled having been mauled by a bear several years before.

At first Einar is reluctant to take in Jean and Griff, blaming Jean for his sons death but surprise surprise Griff slowly melts his old heart. Theres nothing big or clever about this movie and the plot and story aren't exactly Oscar winning but what this movie does have is some excellent performances by the leads which makes you believe in and care for the characters and wanting to see where the story takes them. Redford excels as the grumpy old Einar and shows just what a class act he is, Freeman does what Freeman does really, plays the soul of the movie and Gardner looks like a future star, giving a very strong performance for one so young and more than holding her own up against a legend like Redford. J-Lo, well.. shes ok.. she plays the part well enough but I found it hard taking in Jenni from the block as a simple farm girl really and kept waiting for the fur coats and limos to appear.

If you love simple, well acted stories then this is the film for you, see it.

Green Street (Hooligans in the US I think?)

The new Elijah Wood flick by first time writer/director/producer, German born, Lexi Alexander. Wood plays a young American Matt, who is wrongly kicked out of Harvard and travels to London to be with his sister Shannon (Claire Forlani). While there he becomes friends with Shannons fiances younger brother Pete (Charlie Hunnam) who is a football casual, going to West Ham matches and getting involved in street fights with rival teams. Matt is quickly drawn into their world despite his sisters best attempts to prevent it and their world falls apart around them as a result of his and Petes actions.

This is a pretty good flick all round, its shot well, using handy cams and a very gritty film to give a real feeling of being in the streets and bars of London in the 80s with the cast. The atmosphere of the whole thing of going to the football match is captured really well and as a regular football goer I can testify that they got it pretty damn perfect.

Alot will be made of the violence side of this movie and in fact Lexi stated that several festivals in the states had refused to show it as a result but thats so wrong. If thats why they aren't showing it then they are completely missing the point of the movie. The violence is gritty and real, no kungfu kicks or wirework here, its all knees in places they shouldn't be, bottles smashed in faces, bits of wood break legs, real street fighting. Its not set to pounding rock music and hyped up. Its there because thats what these guys do, its the real world folks and to tell a real story you have to show both sides, the good and the bad. To tell this story without showing the violence would make it pointless.

The cast are excellent, particularily the very likeable Charlie Hunnam who is superb and really looks the part despite his later revelation that hes not really a football fan and knew very little about it having been in the states most of his life. Elijah plays out his role pretty well but I did find it a little hard to believe the way he was in the fight scenes as he really is sooooo small and frail I couldn't see him lasting more than 2 seconds in a real scrap like that. Aside from that little nit picking full marks all round.

Lexi (who is VERY hot incidently), Elijah, Charlie and also Leo Gregory (the psychotic Bover in the flick) and some other guy whos name escapes me were all there and did a very long and open Q&A after the film. Lexi went into quite a bit of detail about how she'd seen these things first hand as a kid in Germany (a country reknowned for its football violence) and had decided to write about something she knew well for her first picture. She also went to great lengths to explain how the violence was relevant and that she certianly wasn't condoning it and although she had been around the trouble hadn't gotten involved. A point missed by the guy who wrote the BBC new review who basically made up his story calling her a "former hooligan".. wrong.. she at no point said that asshole. Feel free to send them abusive emails as this review is utter rubbish.... This one! Right here!. He also claims that Elijah became a "west ham regular" despite Elijah being asked "did you become a fan" to which he replied "No, he doesn't like sports".. doesn't get much more clear than that!

Anyways.. a thoroughly enjoyable movie and well worth checking out if you can find a cinema thats showing it. They are struggling to get finance to promote it and no doubt with the subject matter it could well get buried but heres hoping enough movie smart fans check it out and give Lexi a further chance to show us what she can do.

Surprise movie tonight so I may drop you a mail after that if its anything interesting.


The Lost Boy

I can vouche for HOOLIGANS... and for the statement about Lexi Alexander being hot. Hoo-boy! Thanks for the reviews, man... Now below are two SERENITY reviews. The first is one that I'll probably more agree with. I'm sure Joss Whedon is a nice enough guy, but I just don't get it. Never have... and his devout fans scare me just as much as radical religious zealots... I think Whedonites are edging dangerously close to the Scientologist arena... at least the hardcore ones. Anyway, this first review comes from a non-fan and is mixed... The second review comes from a fan. Here's review #1!

I’ve seen a lot of reviews on your site of Serenity from people who unashamedly worship at the church of Whedon. So my take on it may be of interst. I’m familiar his work but I’ve never seen more than a handful of buffy episodes and I have never watched firefly.

A lot of people write really long reviews but I’m going to keep this short


Serenity had its world premier during the Edinburgh film festival. During the week there has been a number of public screenings and a q+a session with Joss. One fan had paid £210 on ebay for the £15 ticketed Q+A event!

Is the film good?

As a non fan I enjoyed watching it but I never felt I was watching anything more than a good b-movie. If I was too pitch it to a movie studio I would say it was “chronicles of riddick but with more jokes”.

+ points

Each character was interesting and had personality.

It had a believable universe.

The story was entertaining.

– points

It’s too jokey. I can live with one character getting funny lines but does every single character need to crack a joke at some point????

The story relies on background knowledge from the TV series. I found it difficult to understand what characters where talking about or who certain characters were.

The FX was a bit ropey. They did a good job with the money available but it did look like a TV series at times. No-one had screen presence. They were all good actors but no-one was a star.


Fans will love it but mainstream audiences will ignore it. I like to call this the “star trek movie principal.” If anyone is willing to take a chance on it they will have a good time.

And now for the fan... I wonder if he liked it?

Hey Harry,

Just got back from the Edinburgh Film Festival screening of 'Serenity' This was the 2nd or 3rd screening and I haven't seen anything online so I thought I'd share my spoiler-free thoughts.

As far as I know this was the first time anyone had seen the finished product. In short, it rules. It is joint first with War Of The Worlds a my best big-budget film of the year.

As a fan of Firefly it gave me everything I could want. It is funny, it is scary (really scary at points), it is sad (God damn you Joss Whedon I don't know whether to kiss you or kill you), but it is a two hour rollercoaster of adventure, both physical and emotional.

The story is set up so that even those who know nothing of Firefly will never need to. I wouldn't say there are in-jokes but fans will benefit from the emotion attached to the characters. Whedon skillfully slides through the exposion in ways that surprised the audience, and sets up the action and climatic conflicts for later.

Stylistically - Serenity has changed from the TV show. The layout is the same, but she no longer looks like a TV set - its a shiny, metal spaceship. I guess it detracts from the ship as a character, but it looks better. My one complaint is that the characters do not seem to treat her with the same respect and love they do on the show. At one point Serenity is 'changed' and I wanted Kaylee to stand up to Mal more than she does.

Outwardly the ship i pretty - the CG is good but not overused (a big complaint of mine in Star Wars). Theer are all the zooms and off-kilter camera angles in the CG sequences that make it feel as if you are free-falling with the crew while being shot at by plasma cannons and the like - to compare the spaceship sequence to the opening of episode 3, this is truly brilliant.

Whedon has managed something George Lucas could not, and that is to have real audience emotion engagement with the cast while in a sci-fi setting. The main point, which is why I believe Serenity will succeed at the box-office, is that the film focuses on the characters, their emotions and the extermely difficult decisions they must make, not some soap opera plot. The plot element is there, but it is balanced finely, never too convoluted or hammy.

Will we get a sequel? From the glowing (shiny) response of tonight's audience I would say its more than possible. I don't know if I want one. I do, obviously, but part of me is glad I just got to see the film version of Firefly, to have some plot points closed, to see what happened to these characters, but after the events in the movie and the changes to the Firefly/Serenity universe, I'm too emotionally drained to even consider what may happen in a sequel.

Gorram you Joss Whedon, you know how to push my buttons too well!


Readers Talkback
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  • Aug. 25, 2005, 8:41 p.m. CST


    by robrob

    Looking forward to this one.....

  • Aug. 25, 2005, 9:02 p.m. CST


    by dengreg31

    "and his devout fans scare me just as much as radical religious zealots... I think Whedonites are edging dangerously close to the Scientologist arena.." dumbest thing you've ever wrote Quint...c'mon...

  • Aug. 25, 2005, 9:11 p.m. CST

    Dumbest Quote Ever?

    by Sean38

    I'm not sure that's even close the the dumbest thing Quint has ever written. Though it's certainly a contender.

  • Aug. 25, 2005, 9:16 p.m. CST


    by Mark Twain

    It looks like Serenity will hit a home run with the fans. Since I'm a one of them, I ask no more than that.

  • Aug. 25, 2005, 9:16 p.m. CST

    An Unfinished Life sounds like...

    by Buster Gonads

    Enough mixed with Million Dollar Baby mixed with the Horse Whisperer = YAWNNNNN

  • Aug. 25, 2005, 9:18 p.m. CST

    elijah has beer, cheats on marv

    by ectocriminal

    i buy elijah as a kid picking up street fighting. i bought him as a cannibal altar boy ninja assasin serial killer in sin city....he can act. plus, i box, and like tyler said in fight club, skinny guys fight till they're burger. it's the truth. anyway, serenity will suck major balls, but i want to see hooligans. whedon makes too much money to be any good/fresh with material, except in a post-modern existentialist way (which has been done to death earlier in lit by delillo, pynchon, ellis, palahniuk whose poop whedon is not fit suck). even craven has done existentialism and that was eight years ago, you know it's dead if craven tried it. support hooligans.

  • Aug. 25, 2005, 9:20 p.m. CST

    Whedon Fans.

    by dr_dreadlocks

    I'm not bashing anyone. But most Whedon fans are completely level headed and normal. It's the "zealots" that get the most heat and attention and give them a bad name. The same goes for the opposing camp. I'm on the fence with Whedon. I love the shit out of Angel, I own all 5 box sets, and I also own the Firefly set but I only rarely visit it. Buffy, to me, has about six stellar episodes and the rest are ridiculously "90210 with teeth". But let's not bash an entire group of people simply because there are five idiots out there. Let the film come out and we'll all judge it when it hits theatres. I'll probably catch the movie, yes, but am I expecting "A New Hope"? Hardly.

  • Aug. 25, 2005, 9:45 p.m. CST

    I was somewhat a Whedon fan...

    by 3 Bag Enema

    ...I mean, the guy's transformed the way most genre stuff is written, mostly in good ways. What really sold me was Astonishing X-Men. "Hey, Joss, want to take a crack at writing an X-Men comic?" "Okay, sounds fun." And then he goes and writes the best fucking X-Men comic ever. Period. I'm impressed. I'm in line for Serenity, opening day. As for Quint - well, frankly, he's little more than a child. Go easy on him.

  • Aug. 25, 2005, 9:54 p.m. CST


    by redshirt

    Hope they have a longer version of the original theme song!

  • Aug. 25, 2005, 9:55 p.m. CST

    my challenge

    by ectocriminal

    to this talkback is to not talk anymore meandering pointless shit on quint. don't call him an amateur, a child, or anything else, he's just doing his job and it's a job we'd all love to have. whcih is why some are jealous. we all know quint is current webmaster, whedon is poop, and claire forlani is a goddess who if she spoke to me in her (native) british accent while shaking my hand would cause me to lose the easy one in my trousers. forgive me claire, i'm drunk, and must indulge my subhuman fantasies.

  • Aug. 25, 2005, 10:02 p.m. CST

    He must be on crack if he thought War of the Worlds was that goo

    by iamnicksaicnsn

    it was ok, thrilling, but incredibly stupid. Almost as stupid as Signs, and that was appallingly so.

  • Aug. 25, 2005, 10:36 p.m. CST

    i really want serenity to do well

    by Krangelus

    so we can either A) get a sequel B) get a new show with a reality check though, its likely neither will happen. :)

  • Went to a preview screening on Wednesday in London. It's not a bad film but there has been better films on the subject, and I felt uneasy about the very ambiguous morals of the film. It felt like it 'liked' hooliganism but knew it could not say so. Frankly, it is more likely to encourage than discourage along that path. There's very little football in it (there's only 1 league match, short, in the whole film) which I can't complain about since I hate football (yep I'm a girl). So that aspect shouldn't hurt the US box-office. It is very grafficaly violent (I winced quite a few time and I have a strong stomach) but sure, you couldn't really have it not be. Acting is good but the ploy is quite predictable. And the overall feel disputable. You can check it out if you want, but don't take your girlfriend.

  • Aug. 25, 2005, 11:12 p.m. CST

    I hate Buffy + Angel, but Firefly is awesome... also the second

    by Hideo Kojima

    as soon as he ripped on GL. it seemed like a cheap shot, had no real reason to be in the review, and the classification of SW as merely "sci-fi" is amusing.

  • Aug. 25, 2005, 11:25 p.m. CST

    Seems like every self-proclaimed Whedon fan

    by Gheorghe Zamfir

    who comes here to posts their positive review of Serenity has to also post something negative about SW.

  • Aug. 25, 2005, 11:49 p.m. CST

    Does anyone remember J.Michael Straczinsky?

    by DerLanghaarige

    Whedon will be soon forgotten like him.

  • Aug. 26, 2005, 12:34 a.m. CST

    Actually DerLanghaarige, he will not be.

    by Bang!_Your_Dead

    Just like Whedon, J.Michael Straczinsky is currently writing some of the best comics out. Such as Supreme Power.

  • Aug. 26, 2005, 12:39 a.m. CST

    True Zamfir... most fan-based reviews have had non-sequiter rips

    by Hideo Kojima

    Don't get me wrong.. I am a SW fanboy, and even though I recognize parts of Firefly as having been ripped off, I still enjoy the show. Actually, I think I enjoy it *because* elements are ripped off from Star Wars... The idea of "space western", the fact that tons of stuff on Firefly happens "in the outer rim" (how the hell does a star system have an "outer rim" btw, wouldn't the outer rim of a star system simply be the last planet's orbit?), the alliance is like the galactic empire on anti-depressants, etc.

  • Aug. 26, 2005, 1:17 a.m. CST

    firefly better be good to whedon

    by dr.bulber

    buffy left town for good.

  • Aug. 26, 2005, 2:49 a.m. CST

    There is no "outer rim" in Firefly.

    by gammaknight

    In the show they are the border planets. Hence the border of wherever the heck the show takes place. It is one system, and all the planets are quite close to each other.

  • Aug. 26, 2005, 3:51 a.m. CST

    Don't be expecting the TV show theme in the film.

    by Grando

    'Cause it ain't in there. Film rocks hard though, caught it Wednesday in Edinburgh. My only complaint was the complete lack of anybody from the production in presence. Oh and I love Firefly and Star Wars.

  • Aug. 26, 2005, 3:54 a.m. CST

    In one of the first episodes that has been shown on Sci-Fi chann

    by Hideo Kojima

    or something VERY similar, and no not "border planets"... what would the planet border anyway? there is usually a large amount of space between stars and their systems... are they bordering some non-existant space border of sorts? It's late...

  • Aug. 26, 2005, 4 a.m. CST

    They use both border planets and outer rim

    by Gheorghe Zamfir

    And they both would probably just be referring to planets in the outer orbits.

  • Aug. 26, 2005, 4:44 a.m. CST

    Outer rim = Border planets = planets in the outer orbits

    by Killah_Mate

    I mean, c'mon. Is it really that hard to think before you post? Also, I find it interesting that the first, "mixed" review of Serenity was actually pretty supportive, although the guy tried to hide it. The worst things he could say about the movie is that it's funny, and it works better if you've seen the show (a legitimate complaint). Oh yeah, and it's an ensemble show. Whaddya know?

  • Aug. 26, 2005, 6:06 a.m. CST

    one system? you're having a LARF!

    by Fatkraken

    Seriously, they visit/mention a good dozen planets in that show, and there's indications that many more exist, you couldn't get those all into one system while still maintaining a habitable climate on each one. And in any case, in the show they've *LOST* Earth, nobody knows where it is, thus they certainly aren't in the Sol system, so there IS interstellar travel and suchlike. "Border" planets would simply mean planets that border the sphere of known space (expaning outwards from Earth). Sure, you need the magic black box of FTL travel without relitivistic effects, but it's a damn SPACE OPERA, you're allowed a dozen magic black boxes if it advances the plot (just look at star trek). (out of interest, to settle this properly, anyone remember if they visit and binary systems/obviously different suns?)

  • Aug. 26, 2005, 6:50 a.m. CST

    Hooligans/Lexi Alexander

    by BDT

    I am on the mailing list for the grassroots effort to promote this film in the US. Here are some things they suggest: 1. Start a petition in your area to bring the film to your local theatre. The petition must include the signatories

  • Aug. 26, 2005, 7:14 a.m. CST

    Definitely not the milky way

    by Bass Ackwards

    The intro mentioned that after having used Earth up mankind found another solar system and colonized it, so we know its not the milky way. But still, there's never any mention of FTL, so I'd be more inclined to believe its taking place in one system. And really, like you say, its a space opera, sci-fi, if you're willing to bite the magic bullet of FTL, why would you be so quick to deride the possibility of an alternate solar system with an abundance of habitable planets/moons?

  • Aug. 26, 2005, 7:21 a.m. CST

    Thought it was pretty darn ace movie

    by Groggy

    Saw Serenity at my home town screening in Birmingham, UK on Wednesday night and was lucky enough to have Nathan Fillion and Morena Baccarin in attendance. They had a Q&A session afterwards. The place was a total sell out except for one chair which Morena sat in, unfortunately poor Nathan had to watch the movie from a "borrowed" wheelchair right down the front. Anyone know if other cast member were at other screening?

  • Aug. 26, 2005, 7:31 a.m. CST

    Zack's Milky Way

    by First

    Zack wrote: "The intro mentioned that after having used Earth up mankind found another solar system and colonized it, so we know its not the milky way." ... You are confusing a Star System (such as our Solar System) with a Galaxy (such as the Milky Way Galaxy which our Solar System is in). A Star System is a star (or binary or trinary etc.) star around which planets and other objects revolve. A Galaxy is a group of such systems, usually a loose disk of billions of star systems. And then there is The Universe which sonsists of maybe an infinite number of widly separated galaxies stretching to infinity(?). Space is a much bigger place than most people think.

  • Aug. 26, 2005, 7:34 a.m. CST

    Sorry Zach

    by First

    I apologize for misspelling your name.

  • Aug. 26, 2005, 7:35 a.m. CST

    Honest to god I know the difference between

    by Bass Ackwards

    a solar system and galaxy, just slipped with calling it the milky way, damn it all, simple mistake though I swear. Really, I knew the difference, I did! Please don't take away my geek card.

  • Aug. 26, 2005, 9 a.m. CST

    This movie

    by idledead

    has balls like fucking watermelons. Can't wait to see it again come Sept. 30th!

  • Aug. 26, 2005, 9:01 a.m. CST

    It's ultimately down to one system in the movie

    by Trienco

    Dozens of planets, hundreds of moons, yadda yadda. You just have to swallow that they managed to terraform one or two dozen. Just HOW they can compensate for the distance to the sun with terraforming would be one of these black box thingies. Also, I wouldnt be surprised if the two intros from the show were talking about both a galaxy of new earths and a new system. Most likely because they didn't really care or decide about that at the time. Nobody likes to be nailed down, I guess. Well, maybe masochistic sons of deities that have a complex named after them.

  • Aug. 26, 2005, 11:29 a.m. CST

    Green Street

    by crumbsicker

    Although not the worst 'footie violence' film ever made (that'll be Football Factory') I thought this was very poor indeed. Badly acted (Charlie Hunnam's accent moved between Buckingham Palace and West Ham), shallow, pointless and morally incredibly dubious. With a bad script and an (intentional?) homo-erotic subtext running through it, the message I got was that football violence is honorable and that, although he committed several acts of GBH, Elijah Wood' character was redeemed at the end. If this was a story of someone joining a terrorist organisation, there would soon be alot of moaning going on.

  • Aug. 26, 2005, 11:35 a.m. CST

    Yeah, but greatn,

    by raw_bean

    in the series, the intensity of the daylight was exactly the same for different 'planets', as they couldn't really film locations at different distances from the sun and different atmospheric makeups. Not that I'm complaining, though. I enjoy the show too damn much to pick apart the science and logic of it all. Same as with Star Wars. ----- Incidentally, I was pondering the whole 'one star system' thing, trying to work out how it could go. I thought about binary/trinary systems, but where the stars orbiting round one another were quite far apart, enough so that to planets orbiting one sun, the other sun(s) in the system just appeared as unusually bright and big stars in the sky (as our sun would appear to someone standing on Pluto). This would allow for a bombload of planets and moons, all at habitable distances from a Sol-like sun, and all reachable without the kind of FTL travel that has never been shown or hinted at on the show. Extrapolate back a bit to the dying Earth, and they might have sent out huge generational ships full of a breeding population of people, on journeys that might have taken hundreds or thousands of years. If they were going to do that, they'd want to send them in the direction of a star system that was most likely to have Earth-like or easily terraformable planets, ie, one like I described, with more than one sun and a whole host of planets and moons to choose from. Anyway, enough of my rambling. Can't wait to see the film. :^)

  • Aug. 26, 2005, 12:05 p.m. CST

    Saw the trailer for Serenity last night

    by mortsleam

    I was never a big fan of Whedon. The few episodes I saw of Buffy were alright, but I hated the bon mots written by a 40 year old coming out of teenagers mouths. Angel was horrible, and I never got into it. Firefly was interesting but I was never around when it was on, becuase I was, you know, out doing things. I do however love Astonishing X-Men. Truly one of the best versions of the X-Men since the late-80's. Anway, as I said, I'm no fan of the man, but I saw the trailer last night in front of 40 Year Old Virgin and it looked interesting enough for me to check out. Certainly looked smarter than most of the recent sci-fi/action movies. Although their concept of planetary systems and interstellar travel seems a might simplistic and underthought, but that's pretty much apr for the course, and exactly like Star Wars, so I suppose it can be overlooked. *** Hey bean, whassup?

  • Aug. 26, 2005, 12:15 p.m. CST


    by mortsleam

    Wolverine has always been snarky and sarcastic, since he first called Xavier "Charley" 'round about 1975. And while Kitty Pryde has been turned into a typical Whedon lead female, he originally based his lead females on her template, so it's sort of returning to the source. And Emma Frost and Beast are both exactly as they were characterized by Grant Morrison. So if anyone's to blame for them, it's him. The additional characters, the students, the doctors, aliens and SHIELD soldiers, do definitely bear his meta-snark imprint, but the main characters do not. My main gripe with Astonishing is that both of his paced-for-trade arcs could have, should have, been wrapped up in four issues each. Fast, funny and full of action, with in depth characterization in between the fight scenes. He writes TV that way, why can

  • Aug. 26, 2005, 12:59 p.m. CST

    Yeah, I think it will make it in the theatres.

    by oisin5199

    With sold-out preview screenings across the country? Think so. Sorry but anyone who thinks SG1 can even touch Firefly is on crack! Are you kidding me? Serenity's crew are incredibly interesting characters and great actors who are better than 90% of what passes for sci fi on the big screen (let alone small screen)these days. I might sound like one of those crazy fans but sometimes the awful statements people make here just blow my mind.

  • Aug. 26, 2005, 1:01 p.m. CST


    by moviemaniac-7

    It'll rule like the show, which is one of my favourites of the past few years.

  • Aug. 26, 2005, 1:23 p.m. CST

    yup, you're a douche

    by oisin5199

    Though I'll give you Wash/Xander and Kaylee/Willow (only on the surface, though), most of these comparisons don't make any sense and you obviously didn't watch these shows very closely. And the Star Wars comparison is just stupid. Just because the press needed a comparison and threw out Han Solo, doesn't mean it's accurate or that any further comparison would make any sense at all. I could watch that crew reading and it'd be more interesting than most sci-fi casts (with the possible exception of Farscape).

  • Aug. 26, 2005, 1:30 p.m. CST

    Dr. Douche please get a life

    by Obredaan

    If all your gonna do is nitpick over originality or how his characters are similar in each show, well guess what...NO ONE CARES!!! Either you enjoy it or you don't. You can joyfully glee all you want about the box-office, but the facts are simple. Whedon has built a strong fanbase and has gone from a simple script doctor to creating cult franchises like Buffy and Angel. You can hate and whine all you want, no one cares!!! Please get a life and go watch something else if you don't like Whedon's work. How original is any sci-fi for that matter. I hope you don't actually believe that Star Wars was original because then that would mean that only Whedon uses inspirations and translates them into his vision!!! You deserve the moron of the year award for that oh-so original interpretation of Whedon's work.

  • Aug. 26, 2005, 1:43 p.m. CST


    by ShadowSorkin07

    Whedon's shows were good, they were certinally better then 99 percent of the dreck that's on tv. However, don't compare him to star wars, and while firefly was good, it was nothing compared to B5. He's a decent writer, but not the greatest thing around by any measure

  • Aug. 26, 2005, 1:49 p.m. CST

    Serenity vs Star Wars

    by CABridges

    I think there's two reasons the comparison keeps coming up (besides that journalists don't know any other sci-fi to mention). First, Star Wars is the biggest science fiction movie franchise ever. Any science fiction movie with aims to becoming a series will be held up to SW. And second, the Star Wars prequels seemed to emphasize effects and flash over characters and dialogue. Serenity does almost exactly the opposite, and to many people who found the prequels wildly exciting but ultimately empty, this is a sign that science fiction can make you think and laugh and scream without needing lowering the bar of a quality movie.

  • Aug. 26, 2005, 1:52 p.m. CST

    positive review by non-fan

    by oisin5199 note how he says you didn't need to see the show and how he praises the cast. yes, it's on a buffy/angel/firefly site, but the site's pretty much a dumping ground for ALL articles on the shows and the people involved, whether they're good or bad.

  • Aug. 26, 2005, 2:20 p.m. CST

    Actually, check out nearly any UK paper

    by idledead

    if you want to read a positive review about Serenity, in addition to the fact that it's in first place for the audience choice award for the festival at which it premiered. Douchebags will hate on any Whedon project, just because they can, and apparently they hate things that are "witty". I'm not sure when witty became a pejorative. Hey, let me give this hating thing a try: I've never seen the show but feel perfectly qualified to rag on the characters, I judge movies purely on the name recognition of the actors and its budget, I don't give a shit about writing, blah blah douchecakes.

  • Aug. 26, 2005, 2:48 p.m. CST

    Pretty much what I thought

    by vinceklortho

    The most of the American public that doesn't get Josh Whedon could give two shits about Serenity and won't see it. The marketing of that film is going really bad. It will do mediocre to no business at all at the box office. It will just get his fan base. But, to all the fans out there, you probably could care less about the box office and that's cool. You get a Firefly movie that you should enjoy. Me? I'll just see something else. You have to dig deep at this time of the movie season. Brother's Grimm? fuck that.

  • Aug. 26, 2005, 2:51 p.m. CST

    You want us to send abusive emails to a guy who says a shit film

    by TheAllSeeingEye

    Why would i do that. GSH is a fucking piss poor excuse to glamourise the lives of fucking troglodytes. As for Lexi Alexander saying she never got into any fights when she was in a 'firm'; well, that's not what she said on the official website for GSH when it first went up and if i may be so bold as to ask, what exactly did she do in this firm??. No doubt the story has changed since it became blatantly obvious that most people, (with the exception of people who have NO concept of soccer hooliganism), don't really want to see a movie that tries to portray these animals as 'Reliable. Protective. Loyal. Consistent'; her fucking words.

  • Aug. 26, 2005, 2:59 p.m. CST

    "the marketing of the film is going really bad"

    by oisin5199

    Um, what part of sold-out preview screenings do you not understand? The portion of American public that cares about good scifi/fantasy storytelling will see it. You haven't even gotten Whedon's name right, dumbass.

  • Aug. 26, 2005, 3:28 p.m. CST

    Dr. Douche=Troll

    by Obredaan

    You are the only one here talking about how much Serenity will make at the BO so that's an argument you can continue on with one cares!!! You continue to act like Whedon does nothing but rip-off SW but yet you never stop and think that maybe Whedon is a fan and wanted to try his hand at that genre. He's genre writer and most genre writers will use inspirations from other work, is that wrong somehow? Does it piss you off that they were able to make a movie out of a tv show? Really I don't get it? It seems anytime there is a whedon TB, your there throwing around the same recycled comments all the time. You obviously have it in for his work and yet you continue to troll the forums and try and shove your opinion down everyones throats. Stop wasting your life away and go watch something else if you don't like it. No one is forcing you to go see Serenity, and you have already decided that it is nothing more than a Star Wars rip-off. We all know that SW was a mix of several different inspirations including Buck Rogers so what's the big deal!

  • Aug. 26, 2005, 3:28 p.m. CST

    I just watched Firefly for the first time a couple days ago

    by Curtis Spicoli

    I knew very little about the show. I was hooked about 10 minutes into the pilot. My only regret is there are just a handful of episodes. This show was great. It's like the anti-Star Trek.

  • Aug. 26, 2005, 3:29 p.m. CST

    "sold out preview screenings"

    by ubersnarf

    HAHAHAHAHHAHAHAHAHAHHAHAHAHAHAH sorry, sorry. Well, obviously the rest of the American public will follow suit. HAHAHH AHAHAHAH AHAHAHHAH... no really... sorry... just... can't... stop... laughing...

  • Aug. 26, 2005, 3:51 p.m. CST


    by vinceklortho

    that could point to it doing just mediocre at the box office, but has there been any previews anywhere; even in the theatres? Yeah, I know there is one out there, but shouldn't the studios keep milking the fan base? plus, I think preview screenings get sold out most of the time because they're free.

  • Aug. 26, 2005, 4:11 p.m. CST

    i don't think they were free

    by oisin5199

    I tried to get tickets and they were going to charge my credit card, but it sold out. People were paying high prices on ebay for tickets. Serenity people are showing up at cons and at this festival, tons of articles and media coverage and there's these new viral marketing clips out now, so the marketing's going just fine. I'm not sure what 'verse you're in.

  • Aug. 26, 2005, 4:56 p.m. CST

    by bonzob22

    Where are you people living where Universal is not doing real marketing? I saw the first preview in front of Hitchhiker's Guide, Batman Begins, and Land of the Dead, and the second preview in front of 40 Year Old Virgin and Skeleton Key. Sci-fi is showing Firefly episodes every friday, with scenes from Serenity during the commercial breaks. There is a giant Serenity banner hanging up at The Bridge theater in LA, as well as a regular poster. I have also seen posters at the AMC at the promenade and at the AMC in Century City. They have had banners on the Internet Movie Database, they are running a behind the scenes special and firefly marathon the weekend before the release, they are bringing out a tie-in novelization, toys, and script book. And don't forget, it doesn't get released for over a month. If you think it isn't being marketed, you need to pull your head out of your ass.

  • Aug. 26, 2005, 4:58 p.m. CST

    one more thing...

    by bonzob22

    the preview screenings WEREN'T free. Universal knew it could get away with charging full price for a rough, unfinished print, and the fans would not only pay, but will pay again to see the final film. Universal is also applying all the money from the advance screenings to the opening weekend gross of the film.

  • Aug. 26, 2005, 5:01 p.m. CST

    and another thing....

    by bonzob22

    cause i have nothing to do this afternoon, all the comparing characters to star wars is getting completely fucking ridiculous. They're called archetypes, people. You retards understand that George Lucas didn't invent MYTHOLOGY, right? I swear, any mentor figure in any genre film is called an "Obi-Wan rip off" even if the character is nothing like Obi-Wan. Or saying Zoe is "Chewbacca" because she's a loyal companion...oh i see, that makes her exactly like Chewbacca. Idiots.

  • Aug. 26, 2005, 5:29 p.m. CST

    Easy on the Dr.

    by Mafu

    I'm looking forward to "Serenity," but I think Douchebag should feel free to make his points. He's probably pointing out what many Americans who didn't like the movie will say. I disagree with his assessment of Whedon's characters, but that's cool. He's not personally attacking anyone (cough, cough... moviemack), and he's made some salient points. I'm excited for "Serenity," but I know many people will agree with Dr. D.

  • Aug. 26, 2005, 11:24 p.m. CST

    Dr. D

    by Ted_Naifeh

    "This is going to bomb. Remember this post when it comes and goes." Dr. Douchbag. The man has a right to his opinion, even if it is a little harsh and holier than thou. Personally, I think his comparison of the cast to Star Wars and Buffyt characters is a bit of a stretch, but even if it was spot on, I wouldn't disparage the writing because of it. Those are all great characters, and none the worse for already having appeared in other stories. The important thing is that they're emotionally appealing (if emotion is what you're looking for in TV). I'm watching the Firefly series now, haven't finished it, and it was a lot of work to get beyond it's cheap sets and cheesy art direction. The design of Serenity itself is pretty dorky in my opinion. Bleagh. But the characters have started to grow on me. And say what you want about Joss Whedon, the man can plot. Almost every episode has a good strong, gripping plot. Gotta respect that. I wouldn't count out this movie just yet. If it does bomb, which wouldn't surprise me, the Doctor can gloat over all us poor deluded whedon-zombies who get so much pleasure from something so unworthy. If it's a success (which also wouldn't suprise me) he can shake his head in disgust that so many people can be taken in by such completely worthless crap. We've all done that. In the end, we should all remember that not everything is for everyone. But before getting too worked up by such contrary opinions, read the name they're coming from. Take it that a warning that he's not going to bend over backwards for politeness's sake. I'd love it if everyone on the net observed a certain social etiquette, but that's not going to happen. At least Dr. D. is giving us fair warning with his handle.

  • Aug. 27, 2005, 7:15 a.m. CST

    I'm with anyone who says the Whedon fan rip to Lucas was unc

    by Jumpstart

    It reminded me of when John Travolta had "Battlefield Earth" to sell and said, and I quote, "It's like Star Wars, only better." At that point, I said "kiss my ass". Now, I know this is different, as the reviewer isn't actually IN the movie, but it still was a cheap shot. As for the movie, it's all meh to me. IMO, Whedon is a boring storyteller, his jokes are awful and his dialogue is painful.

  • Aug. 27, 2005, 8:14 a.m. CST

    so you think Whedon is a boring storyteller

    by idledead

    but you say that a rip on Lucas is uncalled for. I suppose you didn't catch the prequels. You're probably better off that way. I don't think anyone has claimed that Serenity will be anywhere near as iconic as Star Wars, just that it's better written. And if anyone actually saw Serenity and came out of the theater thinking it was boring, I'd be fucking shocked. I've seen the movie, and I can tell you that it may be too fast-paced, if anything.

  • Aug. 27, 2005, 10:27 a.m. CST

    Tonay 2...that is the strangest talkback I've read...

    by The True Priapic

    "this movie has more one liners...",what on earth is that something to be proud of.One liners?Sweet Christ."better action than War...",dude the point of WOW was that there was barely any action sequences in it as most of the earth being decimated was off screen.It was about one families surbival."It takes every genre...."Holy Christ,this film sounds like God himself make it!!And,dear fucking lord...."a celebration of cinema" and "a celebration of filmaking"..fuck man,get your fucking head out of your backside.You honestly think this was made with NO thought of making money?you silly person.Talk about blind fandom.You verge on a zealot.The advert looks like an episode of Babylon 5!A space western,yeah THATS original.Christ on a stick....

  • Aug. 27, 2005, 1:51 p.m. CST

    well, Flip63Hole

    by omarthesnake

    ... since everyone in the show is either stereotypical, token or geeky to you, what's the point? You clearly don't get it. Lots of us do. We see great characterizations, much deeper than most Sci Fi TV shows (Sliders and Stargate being prime examples), smart plots, and good actors. You see... well, heck, I don't quite know what you see. You really think "even reality TV is more interesting"? I'd ask for an explanation, but I don't really care what you think. Go on and watch your Jar Jar Shakespeare, we're happy not to have you around bitching about a show you've only watched 10 minutes of anyhow.

  • Aug. 27, 2005, 2:55 p.m. CST

    Tonay are really creeping me out.Are you....

    by The True Priapic

    ....either taking the piss or are you seriously weird because you're really creepy strange.

  • Aug. 27, 2005, 3:08 p.m. CST


    by The True Priapic

    mate,I studied film and no-one's favourite movie is Kane,it's a great film and recognised as a class act but dude,I now know you are being cheeky....I..just..can't be're either a grenade launcher and an unfunny one or you need help.That or your balls to drop.Serenity was cancelled wasn't it?i.e.ITS SHIT.

  • Aug. 27, 2005, 3:10 p.m. CST


    by The True Priapic

  • Aug. 27, 2005, 3:17 p.m. CST

    Now now Priapic.

    by TonyWilson

    Ok so tubgirltonay2 or whatever is a monumental ass-scarf but just because something is cancelled doesn't mean it's shit. Firefly was a cool show, funny and well made but not given enough time to breathe. Ah well, I hope the movie is successful but honestly I'm just happy if it's of the same quality as the show.

  • Aug. 27, 2005, 3:23 p.m. CST


    by The True Priapic

    ..I was just riling Tonay,he/it seems so slaved to Whedon I thought he'd go ape-shit crazy in a funny way if I insulted anything Whedon.No offence.Other to that Tonay strange thing,he's on the Polanski talkback now saying everything is down to Whedon as well.I think we have a crazy here.WE GOT A CRAZY,WE GOT A CRAZY HERE!!!

  • Aug. 27, 2005, 7 p.m. CST

    Joss Whedon filmed himself having sex with my wife

    by Gheorghe Zamfir

    And by God, it was the most beautiful thing I had ever seen! TO JOSS WHEDON!!!

  • Aug. 27, 2005, 7:01 p.m. CST

    Joss Whedon once breast-fed a flamingo back to health!

    by Gheorghe Zamfir

    And he hates Mexicans! And he is half Mexican!...And he hates irony! TO JOSS WHEDON!!!

  • Aug. 27, 2005, 7:57 p.m. CST


    by pauljames33

    for fucks sake for those who dont like or are not interested in firefly/serenity, why the fuck do you keep going on about it?! for fucks sake! I love the show and im sure i'll love the movie, but i dont wanna be making love to whedon anytime soon!Fuck!

  • Aug. 28, 2005, 11:05 a.m. CST

    To sum up

    by The GentleMan

    I am AndrewR. I apologise for the torrnt of arguments my star wars comparison caused, but as a rule of thumb, when reviewing a film, I compare it to the leader of that genre. Star Wars (the original trilogy) is beyond a doubt the greatest sci-fi series made. However, that was 30 years ago. The new prequels were, to use a Scottish phrase, tits-up. Episode 3 nearly saved it, but it was a monumental struggle. It's time to give way to new writers and filmmakers who have moved on from the 70s era of blockbusters. Writing matters. Characters matter. Films that try to make up for these with CGI are failing. Trust me when I say Serenity delivers.

  • Aug. 29, 2005, 1:42 p.m. CST

    OK, I just don't get it.

    by idledead

    Countless times I've heard people complain that all the people on Joss's shows talk alike. I honestly don't really see it. Sure, on Buffy, there were quite a few lines that could've been said by Buffy or Willow (sometimes Xander), but Giles and Coredelia's lines weren't interchangable with anyone. On Angel, it's even less pronounced. Doyle's speech was radically different from Angel's - in fact, everyone had a unique voice: Cordelia, Gunn, Wes, Fred, Connor, etc. On Firefly, there is a common pseudo-western dialect, but Simon, Inara and Book are all highly educated and as such speak differently than people who were largely grunts (Mal, Jayne). Zoe and Wash each had better grammar than Mal, and were less mean-spirited. I'm not really sure what that particular complaint is trying to get at. Is it that they argue with and ridicule eachother a lot? Would you rather see more Star Trek styled, with everyone getting along in a clean ship, starched uniforms and no personality conflicts in sight? Because that sounds kind of dull.

  • Aug. 29, 2005, 1:47 p.m. CST

    I might have been up for watching this Serenity thing...

    by The True Priapic

    ..but Tonay 2 has just fucked any interest I had.If you're the type that its aimed for I'm definately not gonna like it.It really does look silly though,all the actors are astonishingly bland or ugly.The 'special' effects are sub-par Babylon 5.I can't get into the quote game as I was one of the billions that didn't watch the show...

  • Aug. 29, 2005, 2:08 p.m. CST

    Some of those ugly actresses...

    by idledead

    Summer Glau -- Morena Baccarin -- Jewel Staite -- Gina Torres --

  • Aug. 29, 2005, 2:09 p.m. CST

    So I guess Douche already got his tickets to see Serenity!!!

    by Obredaan

    And you call Whedon fans...zombies!

  • Aug. 29, 2005, 2:32 p.m. CST

    Tonay...I wouldn't touch any of those women.They're damn

    by The True Priapic

    Get over Serenity/Firefly.It was axed for a reason.

  • Aug. 29, 2005, 3:29 p.m. CST

    Yet another talkback devolves

    by idledead

    into Troll vs. Troll.

  • Aug. 29, 2005, 4:21 p.m. CST

    I don't know about this movie, but those bitches were HOT.

    by p00psock

  • Sept. 2, 2005, 10:48 a.m. CST

    Firefly Quote Challenge

    by hairyinsides

    Would love to accept your challenge, Herr Doctor, but only if we can include those priceless gems of dialogue provided by George "Exqueeze me?" Lucas. That's assuming, unlike Harrison Ford, you can actually say that s*** and not just write it.

  • Sept. 2, 2005, 11:56 a.m. CST

    Firefly Trailer

    by TrueLies

    Did I miss something? I didn't see her in the trailer: (yeah, the picture's probably a few years old, but wtf).