CRRRaSh! 379 Do You Want to Hear My Impression of Mothra?

By Roy Mathur, on 2021-04-19, at 23:03:29--23:54:58, for Captain Roy's Rocket Radio Show, Listen

I Have Not Been on Holiday

No, I have been, well, we could give it a lot of fancy medical terms, but let's say sulking; not just about CRRRaSh!, but everything.

Though it hasn't helped that CRRRaSh! audience participation is at an all time low and I suspect listener figures can't be great.

While I won't stop podcasting, because I enjoy doing it, my motivation has suffered, so if you want more of these, you need to do something. You need to tell me you like it and/or, some tips (as in cash, not advice) would help too.

---He Built a Crooked House

...by Robert A. Heinlein is one of my favourite short stories.

The White Tiger

Erratum regarding The White Tiger, I said in 378:

"...this movie simplifies the protagonist's life into only being about caste, when it's about caste, but it's also about money, rural corruption, and an unsympathetic sociopathic protagonist."

What I should have said is:

"...this movie simplifies the protagonist's life into being mostly about caste, when it's about caste, but it's also about money, rural corruption, and an unsympathetic sociopathic protagonist."

So, "...money, rural corruption, and an unsympathetic sociopathic protagonist." are topics that are definitely addressed in the film even though I said the complete opposite.

What happened? I hated the film so much---because in retrospect it seems like a yet another cliched hatchet job on the entirety of India---that it mangled my critical thinking. I.e. emotions got the better of me.

If you want a disturbing look at caste, see the BBC's documentary Hindus: Do We Have a Caste Problem? If you want to see a very funny take on caste, albeit by a mostly white cast, see DS9, episode 89, Accession. There is a scene in the latter that reminds me of an interview in the former.

Godzilla vs. Kong

A Scooby Doo Mystery Machine-like van, a paranoid podcaster, and every kid with a computer is pirating movies rather than learning to be an effective hacker. Passive aggressive comment by the filmmakers? And just you wait for the deeply cliched Deep Blue Sea (1999) moment.

In this movie conspiracy theories are right; the Earth is actually hollow. There's also a very kingly King Kong, Godzilla (of course), and a Mechagodzilla telepathically controlled by King Ghidora's shiny white and very dead skulls.

It's all the post-Gojira (1954) 60s and 70s craziness, when the people at Toho Studios must have either smoked insane amounts of weed, or just realised they had a mega franchise opportunity and wanted to appeal to a wider audience.

It makes no sense at all. The science is non-existent, there is zero logic, not even internal logic; which is unfortunate as I try to at least manage consistency in my own fiction, even if the premise is barmy, but it is entertaining and you will feel something for the monsters.

King Kong, alone in that big hall, made me feel terribly sad. My inner orchestra bonged away to Edvard Grieg's In the Hall of the Mountain King from Peer Gynt Suite No. 1, and I also imagined poor old Conan the Barbarian. Pathos man, there was actual pathos.

Unbelievably, also look out for some, blink and you'll miss it, Robocop-like actual genuine social commentary about the military-industrial complex, racism, and surveillance.

That isn't to say, I like everything about KvG. For example, the best and most likeable characters are the Scooby team; Brian Tyree Henry, Millie Bobby Brown, and Julian Dennison, and they don't even make it to the hollow Earth. Then there's the timing. After being stuck in lockdown hell for what seems like forever, KvG is the Summer blockbuster we deserve, so why release it in Spring?

In conclusion, the film is totally bonkers. Literally nothing makes sense and the dialogue is creaky, but it's only really about being a puny human bearing witness to watching the very well designed and rendered titans fight. So I watched them fight, then I watched them fight again a day later on Friday night. Do the same. Put your brain on hold and watch this.

Since watching the latest movie, I've been spurred on to rewatch previous reboots of the franchise; Godzilla (2014), Kong: Skull Island (2017), and Godzilla: King of the Monsters (2019). I have now re-evaluated my less then favourable reviews of them. The movies aren't about people or crappy dialogue, they are about monsters and monsters like Godzilla and Kong are empowering. What I'm saying is that the movies, the fantasy of every man with a bad case of small man syndrome, have helped me through a bout a feeling of powerless.

But come on, why the hell did they kill Mothra in Godzilla: King of the Monsters (2019)? That meant no queen of the monsters in this film. You haven't lived until you've seen or heard my impression/foley of classic Toho Mothra (or for that fact any of the kaiju). Toho, I await your call.

The Season of Passage

Deadline report Pike's vampire horror The Season of Passage will be adapted into a Universal movie.

Renfield

Deadline also reports Tomorrow War (upcoming military sci-fi movie) director Chris McKay will direct Renfield about Dracula's creepy servant/slave.

Indiana Jones 5

Tom's Guide: Indiana Jones 5, release July 29 2022, casts Phoebe Waller-Bridge and Mads Mikkelsen, alongside Harrison Ford.

Happily

This 2021 movie is a trippy mystical sci-fi thriller about a couple who are still head-over-heels in love after fourteen years of marriage. Their friends hate them and then something really weird happens.

I saw echoes of The Box and it gave me a sense of those old golden age strange scifi yarns, reminiscent of the Twilight Zone, but perhaps in the form of a Robert Heinlein short story, like one of my favourite stories of all time ---He Built a Crooked House (1941).

It's enjoyable and weird.

The Midnight Club

There's even more of cult YA horror author Christopher Pike adaptations coming this way.

I remember reading his excellent (and really emotionally heavy) The Midnight Club, while living in Mauritius, which Variety reports will be adapted as a Netflix series.

BTW, Pike's big in Mauritius, and that's an amazing compliment for a non-Hindu author incorporating eastern philosophy and finding favour with a predominantly (though, of course, not exclusively) Hindu readership.

Back to Life

BBC comedy about an ex-con trying to reintegrate into her old town, starring and co-written by Uncle's Daisy Haggard. It also stars Adeel Akhtar, who I always imagine as an actor ideally suited for casting as Horis, the protagonist of my novel The Horus Box, if it were ever adapted for the screen.

It's a light, quirky short series with a bit of drama thrown in.

Creepshow

I talked about this back in 2019 (show 288) and I'm revisiting it briefly to recap before launching into season two.

Why?

I saw a trailer for trailer for season 2 and they had me at a support group for werewolves! Werewolves? There wolves!

Invincible

2021 adaptation of Robert Kirkman's (you'd think I'd had enough of this guy) comic book.

Because I have read volume one of the collected edition, I was initially reluctant to dive into this, because I know that, despite the initial Superman/Spider-Man, things get dark quickly. But eventually a desperate need to shuck reality impinged and I started watching and it's great.

It's as dark as I thought it would be, but, man, it's a proper animation adaptation, not a thoughtless, boring comic to screen hack job. The filmmakers use the medium of animation exceedingly effectively, and the editing, particularly leading up to the title sequence, is superb, as is the voice acting, and it's nice to see (hear) Steven Yeun (TWD's Glenn) in a starring role.

Primal

From Samurai Jack's creator Genndy Tartakovsky's is Primal, about a caveman and a tyrannosaur who team up and seek vengeance for the slaying of their families.

Both Samurai Jack and Primal are still available on Channel 4's All 4.

Tales from the Serengeti

There's also the extremely adult and very funny talking animal animated comedy Tales from the Serengeti on BBC iPlayer.

eXoDOS

After listening to YouTuber Get off My Lawn talking about the eXoDOS project to preserve all MS-DOS games I decided to try it out.

The full version is over 0.5 TB and consists of 7000+ games, so I tried the light version, eXoDOS Lite, weighing in at 100 GB+. It saves space by downloading games on demand and also doesn't contain some extra content. Downloading it hammered uTorrent, so I had to adjust the cache settings.

Installation of the Windows only package took ages, and then... I couldn't start the program. If you don't want the flippin' enormous download and long installation, you can play all the games at the Internet Archive through your browser, which is what I did after those problems. However, for games like Doom, you'll need a very speedy connection and even my fast connection took a beating and the game was seasick laggy.

Other than that, I'm really impressed, so hats off to the dedicated and hardworking eXoDOS creators who are doing an amazing job of digital preservation... for the last 12 years!

I keep promising to do let's plays on YouTube and Twitch, but my hardware sucks. If you saw my very last live action, and very laggy, YouTube rant, you'll know what I mean, but I'm working on it. If you're interested, let me know because, while I like DOS games, investing time and money putting together vids that no one watches will not motivate me. You've seen the struggles I've had with podcasting over the last couple of years and I don't want to repeat the experience in video.

The Great Studio Upgrade

Didn't happen. I bought a DBX 286s preamp/channel strip and a new mic stand and... it was a total waste of time. The Konig and Meyer mic stand was excellent, but not quite the right dimensions; my fault. The DBX 286s worked exactly as it should, but did not substantially improve my sound. It certainly was not GBP 150 worth of improvement.

This gear can be useful, I already have a quiet mixer, and Iíve also learned that there is no substitution for using a mic like the musical instrument it is and good audio editing skills. And yes, Iím still learning.

BTW, I live in the UK and bought the DBX 286s from Thomann in Germany, where I have an account. I was worried, given that we are now post-Brexit, but the ordering and delivery process was smooth and not more expensive. Nice.

However, the return process required multiple printouts and the return mailing label didn't scale. Cue multiple copies until I actually had to rescale the thing in PaintShop Pro. Then the instructions from Thomann said I should contact the "local customs authority". Is that HMRC? No idea. So I called UPS, but gave up after waiting in a queue for a very long time. In the end, I went to a local UPS Access Point (a local shop) with my parcel and the documents Thomann had sent me. Not so nice. I have now found out that to return a parcel to Thomann you need 13 pieces of paper. I'm only a private customer, imagine the fun this must be for UK exporters, and indeed a recent Guardian article described the situation as a nightmare.

Yet another parting shot at Brexit(eers); Yahoo News: 440 financial services firms left London for the EU taking GBP 900B with them.