The best sorts of sequels are those which build upon the preexisting world while adding new twists and story beats. When done well, these are movies which can eclipse the original. The two examples that come to mind for me in particular are Aliens and The Godfather: Part 2.
I got the opportunity to catch an advanced screening of Jumanji last week, though I went in a little leery. I’m not the biggest fan of the first film. I don’t an issue with the performances of Robin Williams and crew so much as I just didn’t care for the tone and feel of the movie. It was almost gothic, and a little on the grim side for what was ostensibly a children’s movie.
As a result, it’s not a high bar for the sequel to surpass the original in this case, but I’m not being hyperbolic here when I say that Welcome to the Jungle is leaps and bounds better than the original!
Advance at your own risk, for spoilers await.
I don’t read many comics these days. The entertainment hour-dollar value ratio just isn’t there, for the most part. Why spend four or five bucks on a thin comic that you can read in under an hour when you can buy a Kindle book or two for the same price, that will provide far more value for the dollar? Yeah, the art is often cool, but it’s often not, as well. (Looking at you, Squirrel Girl.)
I’ve noticed something as an entertainment consumer here, lately. More often than not I find that I’m directly opposed to the ‘smart takes’ from the critics who we’re supposed to consider experts in the field.
Justice League has been getting trashed in the press, one way or another, since the project was announced. The original director, Zak Snyder, stepped down to a family tragedy, and was replaced by Marvel Cinematic Universe alum Joss Whedon.
After the film previewed, the “Rotten Tomatoes” aggregate score of critic reviews of the film stands, as of this moment, at a rather dismal 41%. One of the (to my mind) positive things the site has done in recent years is to display the audience reaction for contrast, and there’s an interesting disparity at play here.
There are some fun stories in this anthology. Check it out. My personal faves are the ones by Jon Del Arroz and Brad Torgerson. Seems unfair to tab my own as my fave.