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Filtering by Category: comics

How Do You Talk to a Battle Angel: "ALITA," reviewed.

Chris Klimek

Rosa Salazar is  Alita , an amnesiac cyborg super-soldier in the 26th century. (Twentieth Century Fox)

Rosa Salazar is Alita, an amnesiac cyborg super-soldier in the 26th century. (Twentieth Century Fox)

Panzer Kunist is, as I’m sure I need not tell a cinephile and aesthete as refined and discerning and educated as you are, an ancient cyborg martial art that has largely died out by the mid-26th century. More importantly, Panzer Kunst has the satisfying hard consonants of words that were forbidden on 20th century television. It seems like it could work as any part of speech, which makes it especially panzer to kunst as kunst as possible. Panzer Kunst!

On the new Alita: Battle Angel. My full review is here.

Talking "Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse" on All Things Considered

Chris Klimek

Miles Morales, Peter Parker, Gwen Stacy, Spider-Man Noir, Peni Parker, and Peter Porker. (Sony)

Miles Morales, Peter Parker, Gwen Stacy, Spider-Man Noir, Peni Parker, and Peter Porker. (Sony)

Look, we didn’t think I’d actually get to interview everyone I had on my to-interview wish list. That never happens.

Only this time it did, which is how I came to have five different voices in my four-and-a-half-minute All Things Considered piece on the animation in Spider-Man: Into the Spider Verse, a movie I cannot wait to see again.

All of them—producer Chris Miller, producer/co-screenwriter Phil Lord, co-screenwriter/co-director Rodney Rothman, co-director Peter Ramsey, and finally, Eisner Award-winning comic book writer Brian Michael Bendis, who (with artist Sara Pichelli), created Miles Morales, the primary hero of Spider-Verse—had smart, illuminating things to say. I spoke to Bendis solo and Lord & Miller and Rothman & Ramsey in pairs, and pretty soon I had something like 75 minutes of good tape for a story that could accommodate mmmmaybe two-and-a-half minutes of that.

It was an epic job of cutting, followed by more frantic cutting, and then more surgical cutting. My editor, Nina Gregory, and news assistant Milton Guevara, showed me how radio pros get things done on deadline. Bob Mondello, who’d suggested the piece in the first place, gave me some vocal coaching in the booth.

I wish we could’ve used more of what all those smart, imaginative people had to say. I wish we could’ve made the segment 15 minutes long. But I’m very happy with what we managed to pack into about 240 seconds.

It's Clobberin' Time: Fantastic Four (2015), reviewed.

Chris Klimek

Stan Lee & Jack Kirby's  Fantastic Four  No. 1 hit newsstands on Aug. 8, 1961.

Stan Lee & Jack Kirby's Fantastic Four No. 1 hit newsstands on Aug. 8, 1961.

Because it comes from a promising young director and features a strong cast, the third attempt to turn Marvel's proto-super-team The Fantastic Four into a hit movie franchise turns out to be the most disappointing yet. My NPR review is here.

Julie Taymor probably hates pink even more now

Chris Klimek

Julie hated pink. It also seemed as if she could discern gradations of red on the electromagnetic spectrum that no one else could. Humans are ‘trichromats,’ meaning we have three different types of cone cells in our eyes. However, it has been surmised that because of the XX chromosome, some women may possess a fourth variant cone cell, situated between the standard red and green cones. This would make them — like birds — ‘tetrachromats.’ These hypothetical tetrachromats would have the ability to distinguish between two colors a trichchromat would call identical.

To date, only a few female candidates for tetrachomacy have been identified. I didn’t tell Julie my suspicions. And I’m not saying she is a tetrachromat. But it sure would explain several of those extra hours in Tech, when Julie had hues finessed to a fare-thee-well. But then again, a writer will fuss over a single word, to the exasperation of a choreographer who will make endless refinements to a dance step, deliberating between differences an engineer can’t even perceive. In other words, an obsession over subtleties may just be an attribute of expertise, rather than evidence of being a mutant. Still, a scientist should check her out.
— Glen Berger, "Song of Spider-Man: The Inside Story of the Most Controversial Musical in Broadway History," pp. 146-7.