Holy Batfleck! Lamenting on the latest Batman casting news + the Bat Poll

Oh the irony… Warner Bros. officially announced who they had cast as Batman right on the birthday of Richard Armitage, MY pick of who should don the cowl in the Man of Steel sequel. Thanks to my pal Terrence who texted me just as I was driving home from Austenland screening (which was hilarious btw), so of course I soon realized the news has turned social media into a frenzy. I mostly stayed on Twitter and enjoyed the vehement reactions from all over the globe. On one hand, I’m glad that this news finally ends those crazy rumor mills of Batman casting… alas, there goes my hope that WB would make a good choice 😦 In case you were away from any news media outlet of any kind, well, our next Batman is (you might want to sit down)… BEN AFFLECK!

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So THIS is  the next savior of Gotham??

Not surprisingly, within a matter of minutes, Twitter was ON FIRE!!  According to Variety, there were 5,744 tweets about the film in the first hour, and it averaged 2,307 tweets per hour. Every topic that have anything to do with Batman AND Affleck was trending: #BenAffleckAsBatman #MattDamon (Robin anyone?) #MichaelKeaton #ValKilmer even #GeorgeClooney. With the general consensus saying that George is so happy with this casting as there’s FINALLY more than a smidgen of hope that he’d no longer be considered as the WORST Batman! 😀 Poor Matt Damon, his name is now inexplicably linked to Robin… because whenever there’s Affleck, there’s his BFF, right?

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It was fun reading people’s reactions to this news, so I simply just sat back and enjoyed reading ’em.

Even some celebs couldn’t help chiming in…

I think the general reaction ranges from Say What? to Nooooooooooooooooooooo! There is in fact a petition to WB already underway to request the removal of Affleck from the Batman role, ahah. It’s already got 4000 signatures as of the time I’m writing this post!! Of course, as of this morning, the whole Batman tweets have given rise to…  #BetterBatmanThanBenAffleck trending 😀 This one below is my favorite:

and this:

What does Batman himself say??

So yeah, I’m disappointed, no disheartened by this news. There are TOO many reasons but one simple reason is this: I just don’t see Affleck as Batman nor Bruce Wayne. It’s often than an actor can fit only one of the two persona of a superhero, but in this case, it’s neither! But resorting to such hatred about this is a bit of an overkill. It reminds me of the whole uproar over Daniel Craig’s casting as Bond (what, a blond Bond?? NOOOOOO!!), in which I was also quite skeptical. But the difference is, Craig was a fairly unknown at the time so there’s not as much ‘baggage’ associated with him the way it is w/ Affleck. Of course there’s always a chance, however minuscule, Affleck’s casting is gonna work out just like Craig’s did, but I REALLY can’t picture that at this point. It’s interesting that in the height of his career (winning an Oscar for ARGO), Affleck’s willing to put his career on the line for THIS role [shrugs]

So that means Affleck is SO not through with playing superheroes. I have to hand it to this guy, apparently he’s still not traumatized by the backlash of him playing Daredevil!! I know a lot of people are still suffering from PTSD from seeing that movie atrocity. Speaking of which, this will mark Affleck’s THIRD time playing a superhero role.

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Daredevil’s blind… and bats are blind too, so maybe there’s the connection?? [shrugs]

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Oh I just LOVE wearing spandex! But… does it come in black?

Oh, and there’s another casting oddity in Man of Steel 2Diane Lane played his wife in Hollywoodland where Affleck portrayed the first Superman TV actor George Reeves, and now Lane is Superman’s earthly mom!

Now, apparently Zack Snyder can’t wait to work with Affleck, who’s apparently already working out like mad to achieve the ridiculously buff physique Snyder ALWAYS requires from his actors:

“Ben provides an interesting counter-balance to Henry’s Superman. He has the acting chops to create a layered portrayal of a man who is older and wiser than Clark Kent and bears the scars of a seasoned crime fighter, but retain the charm that the world sees in billionaire Bruce Wayne. I can’t wait to work with him,”

Mwahahahaha, a layered portrayal?? Synder, you should be a comedian!

In any case, I’d love for you my dear readers to weigh in on this topic, please take a quick vote:


So what do you think of the BatFleck AND the reactions over the news? Sound off below.

JULY Movie Watching Recap and Movie of the Month

MonthlyWatchingRecap_July

Happy August everybody! I missed June’s recap because it was such a whirlwind month for me, but it’s back now!

Whoah, it’s the last month of the year before we get to the ‘–ber’ month (or brrrrrr month if you’re in Minnesota!)… and that also means the end of Blockbuster Movies is near. I think there are only a couple of Summer movies left, Smurfs 2 this weekend, and We’re The Millers & Elysium next weekend.

Now, here are some of the posts you might’ve missed from this past month:

New-to-me Films Watched:

ACatinParis

A Cat in Paris (2010)

PacRim

Pacific Rim

DespicableMe2

Despicable Me

Tremors

Tremors

RED2RED 2

TheWolverine

The Wolverine

WereTheMillers

We’re The Millers (review next week)

ActOfKilling

The Act of Killing (2012)


Rewatches:

MansfieldPark1999

Mansfield Park

XMen

X-Men (2000)

BatmanYearOne

Batman: Year One

BatmanBegins

Batman Begins

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The Vicars of Dibley (Christmas Special)

July seems to have gone by pretty quickly. I didn’t see any film the first weekend of July, but I guess I was able to see quite a bit of movies in about three weeks. The surprise film of the month for me has been Pacific Rim, which I saw twice in a month, with The Wolverine being the most disappointing.


Movie of the Month:

JulyMovie_TheActOfKilling

I was going to put down Pac Rim as movie of the month but that was before I saw this film.

The Act of Killing is a chilling documentary that recounts the mass-killings in 1965, which is the darkest moments in my homeland Indonesia’s history. I saw this a couple of nights ago and well, all the adjectives you’ve probably heard about this film: harrowing, disturbing, shocking, brutal, mind-blowing, etc. are no hyperbole. It’s unlike anything I’ve seen before and one that I won’t soon forget.

This is what Werner Herzog, who was one of the producers of the film, said about it:

“I have not seen a film as powerful, surreal, & frightening in at least a decade.”

I’ll be interviewing director Joshua Oppenheimer tomorrow afternoon, so stay tuned for my review and the interview post next week!


Well, that’s my monthly recap folks. What’s YOUR favorite film you saw in July?

Musings on Batman casting… and the actor who gets my vote for the role: Richard Armitage

Perhaps one of the BIGGEST news out of Comic-con this year was the fact that Warner Bros. is developing a Superman & Batman film coming out in 2015. Zack Snyder (via actor Harry Lennix who played Gen Swanwick in Man of Steel) announced it to 6,500 screaming fans at Hall H, and the reaction was uproarious. Whether it’s a positive or negative reaction is hard to tell at the moment, as it was hugely unexpected.

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My knee-jerk reaction was WTF??! I mean honestly, why on earth would they do such a thing? Seemingly a desperate move to get the ball rolling for the Justice League movie, throwing away all that work developing a compelling origin story on Superman. As much as I like both of those DC characters, in fact, I’ve always said I’m more of a DC than Marvel girl because of Superman AND Batman. But yet, the idea of seeing those two characters on screen TOGETHER in a film seems so… ill-advised. Darryl wrote this in-depth post on how the Superman & Batman film might change the character of Batman as we know it, which further suggest the complicated [read: thorny] predicament of the two co-existing within a feature film.

That said, I have to admit that this news rouse my curiosity whether and how that adaptation would actually look like. Is it one of those ideas that’s so crazy it’s brilliant… maybe?

This piece of news also threw the entertainment media into a frenzy, as article after article not only report the news but dissect or lambast the very idea. Naturally, it’s a pretty BIG news, and one that’ll surely keep on buzzing amongst entertainment fodder and comic geeks alike. I reckon that IF this idea was ever going to work, a SUPER script of EPIC proportion is in order… I mean, it was tricky enough for Marvel to bring all those superheroes together in The Avengers, I think the challenge for Batman & Superman is a thousand times bigger. The other precarious issue is the casting.

Now, before we get to that, I just want to briefly talk about Batman: Year One, an animated feature based on Frank Millers’ comics released in 1987. The story recounts the beginning of Bruce Wayne’s career as Batman and Jim Gordon’s with the Gotham City Police Department, which has been corrupted as much as the rest of Gotham. Bruce Wayne is at the age of 25, having just returned home to Gotham City from training abroad in martial arts, manhunting, and science for the past 12 years. I love the dark tone, grit and realism of the story and the humanity of the titular hero, which obviously inspired Christopher Nolan’s Batman trilogy. Now, the one thing that strikes me, as my pal Ted also pointed out, is how much Bruce Wayne in THIS adaptation looks like Richard Armitage!!

BatmanYearOne_BD

Just the past 10 days alone, I’ve read countless of articles speculating just who’ll don the Batsuit and share the screen with Henry Cavill as Superman. My friend Terrence dedicated his Time to Vote Tuesday poll last week on it, combining both TV and Film actors. Now, a bunch of major sites also made their picks of who they’d like to see cast as Batman. Total Film, The Playlist, Screenrant, Nerdbastards, just to name a few, have posted their picks, listing all kinds of actors that got me either nodding enthusiastically or shaking my head in disgust [Joe Manganiello?? I mean, seriously??] But all these sites have one thing in common… all of them got it right to list this classy Brit on their list!

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Seriously, this is a no-brainer folks. I mean, he’s already working for Warner Bros for The Hobbit, so why doesn’t the studio just offer him another contract? I don’t think the fact that he’s already playing Thorin Oakenshield is a disadvantage, I mean he doesn’t even look like himself in that role. He’s playing a dwarf under all that beard and stringy long hair which camouflages his tall, lean figure, so I doubt people would confuse the two roles. He’s not a household name yet [which boggles the mind], but I think that fact works in his favor as he doesn’t have a ‘baggage’ if you will, of being associated with a previous role.

Whether it’s the Superman & Batman film or reboot of the Batman franchise, it’s always fun to talk about the casting of this beloved DC hero. I was going to list my top five picks to play Batman but you know what, for me there’s only one actor who I think is PERFECT for this role… so I might as well just list the seven reasons why he’s the obvious choice:

His looks

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Let’s face it, this is the kind of role where the look of the actor is of the essence. The 41-year-old Englishman has the entire package. At nearly 6’3″, he’s all lean muscle with a chiseled yet rugged features, rockin’ a permanent five-o’clock-shadow look like nobody’s business. Yes I’d rather not see THAT face covered with the Bat cowl, but that’s ok, there’ll be plenty of Bruce Wayne scenes to make up for that. Even without seeing him in person, he’s what you’d call text-book handsome, but with an edge. There’s the right amount of danger, that rugged masculinity that makes him the perfect go-to guy for various anti-hero roles [i.e. in Spooks, Strike Back, Robin Hood]. It’s time that he makes his big-screen breakthrough, in fact it’s been way long overdue.

His intensity

I don’t often agree with The Playlist, but I LOVE what their post said about Armitage, saying that he “… has a similar, Bale-like intensity and the ability to convey a number of emotions through a glassy stare or purse-lipped facial expression. When it comes to the mood of the Dark Knight, especially when he’s at his darkest, Armitage could easily bring that to life.” Yes absolutely!

RicharArmitageThornton

I first noticed Richard as John Thornton in BBC’s North & South and one thing I noticed right away is the fierce intensity he brings to the character. Plus he’s got that enormous screen presence even with no words spoken. But don’t confuse his stillness with being wooden, in fact, he always comes across as a sensitive loner who’s got a lot going for him that he simply can’t reveal to the world. Now who does that remind you of? 😉

He can act

Looks alone just won’t cut it, but thankfully Richard certainly CAN act. His versatility allows him to go from one genre to the next, whether it’s a period drama, fantasy adventure set in an ancient universe, or modern-day spy thriller, he always fits right in. He described himself as being ‘quite a detailed actor’ and he has this controlled ferocity that’s so mesmerizing to watch. I really think he’d bring so much to the role as Batman/Bruce Wayne, and casting him will be the making of that character.

He already looks good in black

Richard seems to wear a lot of black, on and off screen. But dark colors suits him… it brings out the pale complexion and those piercing blue-grey eyes nicely. He was clad in ALL black leather to play Guy of Gisborne in the BBC Robin Hood series, which seems to prepare him for a Batsuit, no? I mean, all he needs is a cape and he should be set 😀

ArmitageGuyRickmanSheriff

I LOVE this Photoshop work someone did with Alan Rickman as the Sheriff of Nottingham in the Robin Hood Prince of Thieves (1991). It’s be a bonus if Rickman has a supporting role in the movie as well, that’d be heavenly!!

He already looks like a billionaire

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Sometimes people just have that look that gives an aura of class… and Richard definitely has it. I mean sure, there are lots of actors who are far more ripped for those inevitable shirtless scenes, but are we going to believe them as a business magnate? I have trouble picturing some actors as someone who’ve stepped foot in an office, let alone being the owner of an establishment like Wayne Corporation. Richard has the right combo of brain and brawn, entirely convincing as a bad ass fighter as well as a brilliant thinker. He’d be as convincing in a Batsuit as well as pinstripe suit.

He’s got the tortured soul thing down pat

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Ok so this trait isn’t exactly a make-or-break thing, but I do think for certain roles, i.e. Jane Eyre‘s Rochester, Hamlet, and certainly, Bruce Wayne, such quality would really come in handy. Richard has played a number of these roles, so yeah, portraying the troubled, conflicted persona of Bruce Wayne should come naturally to him. Most importantly, he can make the whole angst and heartache disposition look irresistibly sexy.

His deep, baritone voice

Now, even the most die-hard fans of Nolan’s Batman films have to admit that Batman’s disguise voice is awful and downright hilarious. I know there’s a certain popular actor who’s one of the top picks for this role but sorry, not only does his smug face bugs me, but that guy sounds like Mickey Mouse! One thing I like about the animated features are the voices of the cast are pretty good. Benjamin McKenzie did a good job providing the voice of Bruce Wayne in Batman: Year One, but really, it’s still no match for Richard’s smooth baritone voice. He’s one of those actors who’s as delightful to look at and listen too (eye candy AND ear candy!).

As we’ve seen briefly in his villainous role as Heinz Kruger in Captain AmericaRichard can pull off a convincing American accent too, as do most Brits. I love it when the voice matches a man’s stature, and Richard certainly has that signature commanding voice fit for a superhero


Well, I hope you’re convinced now that Richard is the one and only choice for Batman 😀

Curious to hear your thoughts on the Batman & Superman movie… and of course the Batman casting, so let’s hear it!