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12th Annual Sci-Fi/Fantasy Challenge Discussion Thread

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12th Annual Sci-Fi/Fantasy Challenge Discussion Thread

Old 07-04-19, 09:52 PM
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Re: 12th Annual Sci-Fi/Fantasy Challenge Discussion Thread

I just finished watching Big Fish. I've been sort of reluctant to see it, but finally bit the bullet and watched it. It was nothing like I thought it was going to be and actually enjoyed it. Doubt I'll go out of my way to watch it again, but I wouldn't say no if someone else asked me to watch it with them.

And because Helena Bonham Carter is in it, I took a look at her filmography... anyone object to adding her to the checklist next year? She's in many sci-fi and fantasy movies and as someone mentioned earlier, our list does skew more in the male actor direction than in the middle.

Originally Posted by shadokitty View Post
Yesterday while I was watching the Webinar for Features and Attractions at Airventure Oshkosh this year, I found another sci fi movie I can watch for this challenge. The Sunday night before opening day, Captain Marvel is playing in the theater on the campground.
Have fun! Nice that you can get a watch in that counts while on vacation!

Originally Posted by BobO'Link View Post
I'm *always* more impressed by "practical effects" visuals than CGI. While there are some excellent and amazing looking CGI sequences in films there's little "artistry" involved outside producing the artwork for the sequence(s). For CGI all you really need is a good starting image and software that can take that image from point A to point B while keeping perspective correct. No matter how good the original artwork may be, the visuals on film are only as good as the software and rendering hardware are capable of producing. I stopped being impressed by CGI long ago.
I don't know that I'd go that far. I think CGI is an art form on it's own. Takes a lot of talent and skill to make it happen, especially when it's a new technology... I mean, Merida's hair in Brave was amazing. I'm sure as the technology gets older, there is a lot of cut and paste, but you have to set it up in the first place. But, I agree that practical effects seem more skillful. Definitely more hands on and you probably had to be more inventive since you couldn't just pull out an electronic pen and draw what you wanted on the screen. I also think that it tends to be more consistent for whatever reason. CGI tends to fail in one or two scenes where it works the rest of the film, but a "practical effect" film is all done at the same level of competency.

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Old 07-05-19, 05:02 AM
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Re: 12th Annual Sci-Fi/Fantasy Challenge Discussion Thread

As is my tradition, I watched Independence Day yesterday. Nothing beats Will Smith saving the world from aliens.
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Old 07-06-19, 11:30 AM
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Re: 12th Annual Sci-Fi/Fantasy Challenge Discussion Thread

My son and his family (wife and 3 kids ages 3-7) left this morning after a 2 week stay at my house. I finally have a full day to just watch movies. I'm currently watching a new BR copy of The Corpse Bride (I'm not much of a fan of this one - too many musical interludes). It's one of 4 movies in a Tim Burton set (the others are Beetlejuice, Sleepy Hollow, and Charlie and the Chocolate Factory) and I'm looking forward to the others. While I prefer Willie Wonka and the Chocolate Factory with Gene Wilder I enjoy Charlie..., especially Depp's performance.
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Old 07-06-19, 02:51 PM
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Re: 12th Annual Sci-Fi/Fantasy Challenge Discussion Thread

Originally Posted by BobO'Link View Post
My son and his family (wife and 3 kids ages 3-7) left this morning after a 2 week stay at my house. I finally have a full day to just watch movies. I'm currently watching a new BR copy of The Corpse Bride (I'm not much of a fan of this one - too many musical interludes). It's one of 4 movies in a Tim Burton set (the others are Beetlejuice, Sleepy Hollow, and Charlie and the Chocolate Factory) and I'm looking forward to the others. While I prefer Willie Wonka and the Chocolate Factory with Gene Wilder I enjoy Charlie..., especially Depp's performance.
I'm with you on the Corpse Bride. Not a favorite, but I probably should give it another try one of these days. Maybe at the end of the month when I can get double credit. Willie Wonka and the Chocolate Factory is my favorite too, though, Charlie I appreciate for sticking closer to the books in the challenges the kids face in the factory. I hate the weird side story between Wonka and his father and hate Depp's performance. Wonka is eccentric not a druggie and that's really how he played him. I love the visuals though the original chocolate room is AMAZING and I would have loved to be able to go into it as a child. I even enjoy the boat scene which never freaked me out.

Did you know Roald Dahl wrote a sequel? It's called "Charlie and the Great Glass Elevator." Worth the read!
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Old 07-07-19, 09:50 AM
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Re: 12th Annual Sci-Fi/Fantasy Challenge Discussion Thread

Originally Posted by LJG765 View Post
I'm with you on the Corpse Bride. Not a favorite, but I probably should give it another try one of these days. Maybe at the end of the month when I can get double credit. Willie Wonka and the Chocolate Factory is my favorite too, though, Charlie I appreciate for sticking closer to the books in the challenges the kids face in the factory. I hate the weird side story between Wonka and his father and hate Depp's performance. Wonka is eccentric not a druggie and that's really how he played him. I love the visuals though the original chocolate room is AMAZING and I would have loved to be able to go into it as a child. I even enjoy the boat scene which never freaked me out.

Did you know Roald Dahl wrote a sequel? It's called "Charlie and the Great Glass Elevator." Worth the read!
I did not. But I've never read the first one.

I enjoyed The Corpse Bride more this time than before. Maybe it's one of those that has to grow on you...

Charlie... was enjoyable again. I don't see the "druggie" aspect of the performance. For me hs comes off as quirky and just a bit twisted. Pretty much in keeping with how a kid treated that way by his father might turn out. It's a much different performance than Wilder's. I really like the squirrel "bad nut" bit in this one.
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Old 07-07-19, 11:55 AM
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Re: 12th Annual Sci-Fi/Fantasy Challenge Discussion Thread

Originally Posted by BobO'Link View Post
I did not. But I've never read the first one.

I enjoyed The Corpse Bride more this time than before. Maybe it's one of those that has to grow on you...

Charlie... was enjoyable again. I don't see the "druggie" aspect of the performance. For me hs comes off as quirky and just a bit twisted. Pretty much in keeping with how a kid treated that way by his father might turn out. It's a much different performance than Wilder's. I really like the squirrel "bad nut" bit in this one.
I'll throw The Corpse Bride on my list, but likely it'll be watched at the end of the month. I'm kind of in a more classic mode this challenge so far. Maybe druggie is a bad word for it, but Depp's performance of Wonka is just too quirky/odd/disjointed for me. Maybe it's because I'm a huge fan of the book as well as the original movie, but it really drew me out of the movie. His flash backs are just distracting to me. I won't disagree that it might be more in keeping with the story line of a disappearing father, but that whole plot line is totally unique to the movie. Maybe it's part of the "book to movie never turns out" trope with me. I think they did a much better job keeping to the book than the original except for Wonka.

The squirrels are fun (though I do like the geese scene in the original). I might be remembering wrong, but pretty sure they are real squirrels that were all trained to do one trick each and not CGI.

I may have to throw both these movies onto my list to watch now!

I watched The Man Who Fell to Earth last night and I have to say I disliked it a lot. I get why it's a cult movie. Bowie's performance was well done in line with his character. Just did not enjoy it at all. Also very glad two nights ago I suggested that my mom and I watch Big Fish rather than this one. I may be 40, but no one wants to watch sex scenes that graphic (or at all usually) with their mom.

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Old 07-07-19, 12:41 PM
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Re: 12th Annual Sci-Fi/Fantasy Challenge Discussion Thread

^ The last film I went to the theater with my mom was The Wrestler.
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Old 07-07-19, 12:45 PM
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Re: 12th Annual Sci-Fi/Fantasy Challenge Discussion Thread

Originally Posted by Trevor View Post
^ The last film I went to the theater with my mom was The Wrestler.
I have to admit, I've never watched that one either. Not a huge sports fan. I'll assume that it's pretty graphic in parts? I'll make a mental note of never watching that with her if I get the urge to watch it.
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Old 07-07-19, 12:53 PM
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Re: 12th Annual Sci-Fi/Fantasy Challenge Discussion Thread

Originally Posted by LJG765 View Post
I'll throw The Corpse Bride on my list, but likely it'll be watched at the end of the month. I'm kind of in a more classic mode this challenge so far. Maybe druggie is a bad word for it, but Depp's performance of Wonka is just too quirky/odd/disjointed for me. Maybe it's because I'm a huge fan of the book as well as the original movie, but it really drew me out of the movie. His flash backs are just distracting to me. I won't disagree that it might be more in keeping with the story line of a disappearing father, but that whole plot line is totally unique to the movie. Maybe it's part of the "book to movie never turns out" trope with me. I think they did a much better job keeping to the book than the original except for Wonka.
Based on your mention of the squirrels I had to look up some trivia/information on the movie. Considering your comments on you thinking Depp/Willie looks like a druggie I found this little bit interesting (from IMDB's Trivia on the movie):
Johnny Depp once stated in an interview that he based his Willy Wonka performance on how he imagined former U.S. President George W. Bush would act while stoned.
Well... Guess I stand corrected!

With your "book to movie" comments I think I'm glad I've not read the book as I have no preconceived notions about what's "right" or not. In he case of this one it lets me appreciate each for what they bring.

I generally prefer to save the read of a book that was turned into a movie until after I've seen the movie. That way I get the best of both worlds: A movie that doesn't irritate/annoy me with changes followed by a fleshing out of the movie with the book. It doesn't always work that way, especially for SF or Fantasy material as I've read sooo much of those genres, but frequently does.
Originally Posted by LJG765 View Post
The squirrels are fun (though I do like the geese scene in the original). I might be remembering wrong, but pretty sure they are real squirrels that were all trained to do one trick each and not CGI.
Also from IMDB:
Forty squirrels were trained for the scene where they pounce upon Veruca Salt (Julia Winter).
And from Wikipedia:
The animals were trained every day for 10 weeks before filming commenced. They began their coaching while newborns, fed by bottles to form relationships with human trainers. The squirrels were each taught how to sit upon a little blue bar stool, tap and then open a walnut, and deposit its meat onto a conveyor belt. "Ultimately, the scene was supplemented by CGI and animatronics," Burton said, "but for the close-ups and the main action, they're the real thing."
I always thought they were CGI. That's pretty cool that they were able to do that.

Originally Posted by LJG765 View Post
I may have to throw both these movies onto my list to watch now!
I'd consider watching Willie Wonka... myself if it weren't for the large amount of "new" (aka unopened) material I'm attempting to get through.
Originally Posted by LJG765 View Post
I watched The Man Who Fell to Earth last night and I have to say I disliked it a lot. I get why it's a cult movie. Bowie's performance was well done in line with his character. Just did not enjoy it at all. Also very glad two nights ago I suggested that my mom and I watch Big Fish rather than this one. I may be 40, but no one wants to watch sex scenes that graphic (or at all usually) with their mom.
I purchased a digital copy of The Man Who Fell to Earth from Amazon using "Slow shipping credits." In spite of its cache' as a cult/genre classic it's one I've never seen. During it's original release I recall thinking "Oh... a movie with Bowie. *That'll* be something to avoid." I really like his early (Ziggy era) material but just couldn't see him in a movie at all.

I'd forgotten about owning a copy of The Man Who Fell to Earth! I tend to forget all of those digital movies as I generally don't do streaming and they're not on the shelves staring me in the face (another reason I prefer physical). In spite of that I've purchased a huge number of movies that are either not on physical, the physical is OOP and stupidly expensive, the physical is a BOD release (in which case it's a tie other than getting a copy "free" with those credits).

Nice dodge with your mom on the movie selection! I'd not have that issue as my mom wouldn't watch anything like The Man... in the first place. She leans towards Classic Musicals and Classic Biblical Epics if she watches anything.

Last edited by BobO'Link; 07-07-19 at 01:36 PM.
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Old 07-07-19, 01:15 PM
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Re: 12th Annual Sci-Fi/Fantasy Challenge Discussion Thread

I watched a "Blue Underground" Double Feature DVD release yesterday:

Contamination (1980) plays like a mash up of Invasion of the Body Snatchers and Alien (using the "pod" ideas with the pods acting like a host for an alien invasion from Mars) with a really goofy looking alien creature thrown in for good measure. It was pretty bad but not as bad as:

H.G. Well's The Shape of Things to Come (1979) which bears little resemblance to the 1936 Things to Come and, AFAIK, takes little from the book. It's essentially a Star Wars meets Buck Rogers ripoff movie that plays like a sub-par made-for-TV affair which managed to get on the "big screen." The only reasons to watch are to see the cheesiness of Jack Palance and watch Barry Morse (The Fugitive, Space 1999, and more), John Ireland (Red River,All the King's Men and many, many more), Carol Lynley (many TV and low budget movies), and Anne-Marie Martin (Sledge Hammer). Sadly, none were given dialog worthy of even the most meager talents. It at least has some decent model work although it's not put on the screen well. I frequently felt the filmmakers had absolutely no knowledge of how physics work in space.

One that really surprised me was Passengers (2016). This was a blind-buy at Big Lots because it looked like it might be mildly interesting. It's more than that. It has some well done moral issues, throws in a romance sub-plot that actually works (at least for me), and has a very nice payoff without getting maudlin. It could have easily turned that way due to the primary plot: "A spacecraft traveling to a distant colony planet and transporting thousands of people has a malfunction in one of its sleep chambers causing a passenger to be awakened 90 years early." Even knowing how it ends I'd watch it again today.

Last edited by BobO'Link; 07-07-19 at 01:22 PM.
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Old 07-07-19, 01:38 PM
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Re: 12th Annual Sci-Fi/Fantasy Challenge Discussion Thread

Originally Posted by LJG765 View Post
I have to admit, I've never watched that one either. Not a huge sports fan. I'll assume that it's pretty graphic in parts? I'll make a mental note of never watching that with her if I get the urge to watch it.
Not super graphic iirc, but constant language and brief nudity. Much of it is set in a strip club. Not purely a sports film, more a character study and very well done. Ebert gave it 4/4 and I agree. Intense, and not something I値l re-watch often, but a powerful film. Not much sci-fi, but strip clubs are pure fantasy, right?
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Old 07-07-19, 03:39 PM
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Re: 12th Annual Sci-Fi/Fantasy Challenge Discussion Thread

Originally Posted by BobO'Link View Post
Based on your mention of the squirrels I had to look up some trivia/information on the movie. Considering your comments on you thinking Depp/Willie looks like a druggie I found this little bit interesting (from IMDB's Trivia on the movie):

Well... Guess I stand corrected!

With your "book to movie" comments I think I'm glad I've not read the book as I have no preconceived notions about what's "right" or not. In he case of this one it lets me appreciate each for what they bring.

I generally prefer to save the read of a book that was turned into a movie until after I've seen the movie. That way I get the best of both worlds: A movie that doesn't irritate/annoy me with changes followed by a fleshing out of the movie with the book. It doesn't always work that way, especially for SF or Fantasy material as I've read sooo much of those genres, but frequently does.

Also from IMDB:

And from Wikipedia:

I always thought they were CGI. That's pretty cool that they were able to do that.


I'd consider watching Willie Wonka... myself if it weren't for the large amount of "new" (aka unopened) material I'm attempting to get through.

I purchased a digital copy of The Man Who Fell to Earth from Amazon using "Slow shipping credits." In spite of its cache' as a cult/genre classic it's one I've never seen. During it's original release I recall thinking "Oh... a movie with Bowie. *That'll* be something to avoid." I really like his early (Ziggy era) material but just couldn't see him in a movie at all.

I'd forgotten about owning a copy of The Man Who Fell to Earth! I tend to forget all of those digital movies as I generally don't do streaming and they're not on the shelves staring me in the face (another reason I prefer physical). In spite of that I've purchased a huge number of movies that are either not on physical, the physical is OOP and stupidly expensive, the physical is a BOD release (in which case it's a tie other than getting a copy "free" with those credits).

Nice dodge with your mom on the movie selection! I'd not have that issue as my mom wouldn't watch anything like The Man... in the first place. She leans towards Classic Musicals and Classic Biblical Epics if she watches anything.
Sci-Fi/Fantasy is one of the few things I tend to watch right away when I get it. I have a ton unopened too, but the majority of things I've at least watched once. I also like the challenges to get me out of my ruts-see things I wouldn't normally watch that are on the lists. Like, "top 50 films to see before you die!" type things. A lot of misses have come through, but the winners are worth the slog!

I'm pretty much only familiar with Bowie because of The Labyrinth. One of my favorites as a kid. Never got into his music much, but figured he'd be watchable from that at least. But man, this film is pretty trippy. Good luck watching!

Mom and I share some tastes in movies. We're both fans of musicals, action films and older classics. She knows I do these challenges and most of the time is willing to watch what I'm interested in. I always worn going in and usually give her a choice between two or three, but she's usually up for blind watches too which this was. So it was VERY good that I remembered she wanted to see Big Fish the last time I went through the VUDU list.

Originally Posted by Trevor View Post
Not super graphic iirc, but constant language and brief nudity. Much of it is set in a strip club. Not purely a sports film, more a character study and very well done. Ebert gave it 4/4 and I agree. Intense, and not something I値l re-watch often, but a powerful film. Not much sci-fi, but strip clubs are pure fantasy, right?
Well...I agree that strip clubs are fantasy, but I'm not sure if it's keeping in the spirit of the challenge...lol! I have to admit the nudity in The Man... surprised me that this film didn't end up with an X rating. Maybe it did and it's been downgraded b/c of time? But along with full body nudity for women (which is fairly common), there was frontal male nudity too (though much more disguised/quicker time on screen) which you hardly ever see. I think I remember seeing it started filming in Britain with a British director (could be wrong), so I'm wondering if that European sensibility kicked in. Much less violence but more sex.
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Old 07-07-19, 04:38 PM
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Re: 12th Annual Sci-Fi/Fantasy Challenge Discussion Thread

Thanks for the well wishes on my vacation LJG. Yeah, always nice to get a watch that counts when I知 on vacation. Might get some tv in too, as I知 taking my phone and tablet. That way I have something to do at my tent at night. Felt like some anime earlier, so I brought out my Beast King Golion Volume 1 set and watched the first episode. Wow, it shows the difference when an anime is unedited. Slaves being whipped and slaughtered for one thing.
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Old 07-07-19, 11:46 PM
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Originally Posted by shadokitty View Post
Thanks for the well wishes on my vacation LJG. Yeah, always nice to get a watch that counts when I知 on vacation. Might get some tv in too, as I知 taking my phone and tablet. That way I have something to do at my tent at night.


Not this week, but next is our annual family vacation and I do the same thing sans tent. Grab movies to watch at night when everyone else is asleep, hide in my cave (the basement) and watch on my laptop. I'm just grateful that the last few years have my own data that works so I don't have to "sip" while using someone else's. (It's literally in the middle of the woods on a lake, so only a few cell companies get signal. I changed a couple years ago to one that does.) During the day, it's family/swimming/reading, but at night, I get some quiet time with watching for the challenge. Hope you get some good weather, shadokitty, it's been super rainy here this summer.

BobO'Link...I realize I forgot to comment on your mention of not reading a book being better before seeing the movie...I get that, but I'm a big reader so it's more likely I've read the book before the movie even existing. Overall, it does lean towards the books being better, but once in awhile it's the other way around. Most of the Harry Potter movies I think are better than the book. Though, I have had a movie that inspired me to read the book and I agree, it is nice addition to the movie rather than being disappointed that your favorite scene didn't make the cut or that they combined two characters!

I have several movies in transit from the library but until they come in, I decided to do a double feature of Charlie and the Chocolate Factory and Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory. I might have to wait until tomorrow for the Willy Wonka but all this talk made me want to watch them close together and checks off at least one or two ticks of the checklist!

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Old 07-08-19, 12:56 PM
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Re: 12th Annual Sci-Fi/Fantasy Challenge Discussion Thread

Originally Posted by LJG765 View Post
Not this week, but next is our annual family vacation and I do the same thing sans tent. Grab movies to watch at night when everyone else is asleep, hide in my cave (the basement) and watch on my laptop. I'm just grateful that the last few years have my own data that works so I don't have to "sip" while using someone else's. (It's literally in the middle of the woods on a lake, so only a few cell companies get signal. I changed a couple years ago to one that does.) During the day, it's family/swimming/reading, but at night, I get some quiet time with watching for the challenge. Hope you get some good weather, shadokitty, it's been super rainy here this summer.
I laughed at that one because my youngest granddaughter (almost 3) calls my den "Pa's cave" - which is in the "basement" but has a ground level door to the back yard (the rest is mostly underground).
Originally Posted by LJG765 View Post
BobO'Link...I realize I forgot to comment on your mention of not reading a book being better before seeing the movie...I get that, but I'm a big reader so it's more likely I've read the book before the movie even existing. Overall, it does lean towards the books being better, but once in awhile it's the other way around. Most of the Harry Potter movies I think are better than the book. Though, I have had a movie that inspired me to read the book and I agree, it is nice addition to the movie rather than being disappointed that your favorite scene didn't make the cut or that they combined two characters!
I, too, am a big reader - but not as much as in the past (too many movies/TV series stealing the time from reading). Most of the time I prefer the book to the movie - even when reading the book after seeing the movie.

I've been slowly working my way through the Harry Potter books. I agree with your comment on them. The movies are faster paced and really don't leave out anything of significance. Sometimes the extra elucidation drags the books to a crawl. At least they're mostly quick reads. Those are cases where the movies are what got me to read the books, even after poo-pooing the first movie as having bad CGI and a trite/recycled feeling plot. After a few viewings I like it better now and absolutely see why kids really like them. They have mostly believable characters and don't talk down to kids.
Originally Posted by LJG765 View Post
I have several movies in transit from the library but until they come in, I decided to do a double feature of Charlie and the Chocolate Factory and Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory. I might have to wait until tomorrow for the Willy Wonka but all this talk made me want to watch them close together and checks off at least one or two ticks of the checklist!
While reading that other stuff about those two movies I discovered Dahl disliked Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory. Dahl was credited with writing the film's screenplay however, David Seltzer, who went uncredited in the film, was brought in to re-work it against Dahl's wishes, making major changes to the ending and adding musical numbers. These changes and other decisions made by the director led Dahl to disown the film.

The screenwriter for Charlie and the Chocolate Factory had never seen the first movie before writing that screenplay. He and Burton wanted to stick as close to the book as possible and got the blessing from Dahl's wife and daughter (who had full artistic control over the project).

Liccy Dahl (Roald's daughter) commented that Burton was the first and only director the estate was happy with. He had previously produced another of the author's adaptations with James and the Giant Peach (1996), and, like Roald and Liccy, disliked the 1971 film because it strayed from the book's storyline.
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Old 07-08-19, 01:42 PM
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Re: 12th Annual Sci-Fi/Fantasy Challenge Discussion Thread

Just got back from vacation and watched Capricorn One on my phone on the plane—first time in many years, and not quite what I remember, but good conspiracy thriller.

Finished Stranger Things s3 last night.

Currently watching Mortal Engines. The visuals caught my eye when I watched the trailer, and those are good, but the rest of it is pretty forgettable. There are some attempts at humor referring to our present day from the perspective of their future, and they just come across as lame. A reference to the Minions just makes me think “THIS IS A UNIVERSAL MOVIE.” Glad I saw it to satisfy my curiosity, though, and bonus points for being able to count it on this month’s list.
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Old 07-08-19, 02:13 PM
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Originally Posted by BobO'Link View Post
I laughed at that one because my youngest granddaughter (almost 3) calls my den "Pa's cave" - which is in the "basement" but has a ground level door to the back yard (the rest is mostly underground).
The basement I'm talking about is very similar with doors to the backyard. It's also a ton cooler than the rest of the house and quieter. It's a great place to be set up in. Upstairs has 3 bedrooms but they are all tiny and it's loud, so no problems being in the cave for me!

Originally Posted by BobO'Link View Post
I, too, am a big reader - but not as much as in the past (too many movies/TV series stealing the time from reading). Most of the time I prefer the book to the movie - even when reading the book after seeing the movie.

I've been slowly working my way through the Harry Potter books. I agree with your comment on them. The movies are faster paced and really don't leave out anything of significance. Sometimes the extra elucidation drags the books to a crawl. At least they're mostly quick reads. Those are cases where the movies are what got me to read the books, even after poo-pooing the first movie as having bad CGI and a trite/recycled feeling plot. After a few viewings I like it better now and absolutely see why kids really like them. They have mostly believable characters and don't talk down to kids.
A little off topic, but I'm the host, so I'm not going to ding myself! lol! But I have this theory. I love books 1-4, but 5-7 are way too long winded and drawn out. There's places where you can tell Rowling forgot what she had written before or changed her mind. This is where my theory comes into place. It was about book 3-4 where the HP mania kicked in and she became really famous really quickly. There was a bit of a wait around book 4 or 5 where it was supposed to come out, then got pushed back. I think her editors became too scared/pressured to do much editing. That camping scene that is like 300 pages long in book 7 is a great example. If someone had really gone through and edited it, the books would have been much better toward the end. Don't get me wrong, I'm a huge HP fan, but the last half of the series needs help. I do appreciate how as the kids in the book get older, the series gets more serious and dark. Rowling really aged them appropriately for the most part and I appreciate that.

Originally Posted by BobO'Link View Post
While reading that other stuff about those two movies I discovered Dahl disliked Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory. Dahl was credited with writing the film's screenplay however, David Seltzer, who went uncredited in the film, was brought in to re-work it against Dahl's wishes, making major changes to the ending and adding musical numbers. These changes and other decisions made by the director led Dahl to disown the film.

The screenwriter for Charlie and the Chocolate Factory had never seen the first movie before writing that screenplay. He and Burton wanted to stick as close to the book as possible and got the blessing from Dahl's wife and daughter (who had full artistic control over the project).

Liccy Dahl (Roald's daughter) commented that Burton was the first and only director the estate was happy with. He had previously produced another of the author's adaptations with James and the Giant Peach (1996), and, like Roald and Liccy, disliked the 1971 film because it strayed from the book's storyline.
Huh, I knew Dahl was credited with the screenplay in the original but guess I didn't realize he didn't like it. Watching the sequel last night, I'm struck again at how closely they followed the book (except for the weird Willy and his Father bit). I could see why Dahl would be upset at the changes they made. There's quite a few from the book, though at this point, I enjoy the movie as it is on its own apart from it.

Originally Posted by davidh777 View Post
Finished Stranger Things s3 last night.
How was it? I have only watched S1, but really enjoyed it. I don't have Netflix, so have to use other people's if I want to see something on it. I'm hoping my sister lets me next week for S2.
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Old 07-08-19, 02:27 PM
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Re: 12th Annual Sci-Fi/Fantasy Challenge Discussion Thread

I renewed my Netflix subscription for this Challenge. Thinking of trying Stranger Things and the Netflix Godzilla movies.
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Old 07-08-19, 03:00 PM
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Re: 12th Annual Sci-Fi/Fantasy Challenge Discussion Thread

Originally Posted by LJG765 View Post
How was it? I have only watched S1, but really enjoyed it. I don't have Netflix, so have to use other people's if I want to see something on it. I'm hoping my sister lets me next week for S2.
I thought it was very good. You値l want to watch season 2 first, of course, but I liked this one a little better.
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Old 07-08-19, 03:22 PM
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Re: 12th Annual Sci-Fi/Fantasy Challenge Discussion Thread

I need to get back onto ST too. Loved season one, maybe I’ll try to squeeze 2&3 in here.
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Old 07-08-19, 07:36 PM
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Re: 12th Annual Sci-Fi/Fantasy Challenge Discussion Thread

Yesterday was somewhat a smorgasbord of things. I started with the last couple of movies in that Tim Burton set: Beetlejuice and Sleepy Hollow. Watching Sleepy Hollow it struck me as odd that the other 3 movies in the set are rated PG while Sleepy Hollow rated R. Considering it's a WB set and all have Fantasy genre tags that probably limited their choices.

After that I finally watched the 3 movie "Blomkamp" set I'd picked up: District 9, Elysium, and Chappie. Watching them back-to-back you can see the reuse of ideas and devices (mostly the robots) employed. All three are quite creative and interesting. Chappie is the only one of those three I'd not seen before and I think I like it the best of the group. It's a really fun movie.

I wrapped up the evening with the Roger Corman produced Alien ripoff Forbidden World. The set I have has both the theatrical in WS and the original cut of the movie, under the name of Mutant, in a FS copy on a bonus disc. I watched the theatrical last night. I may watch the original cut tonight.

Last edited by BobO'Link; 07-08-19 at 07:44 PM.
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Old 07-08-19, 10:07 PM
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Re: 12th Annual Sci-Fi/Fantasy Challenge Discussion Thread

Another addition for next year to think about is Emma Thompson. She's got about 10/11 eligible films at this point or will by next year. 2 upcoming in the next year as well. I'm going to put a spoiler tag in the first post with suggestions. As everyone is watching, please keep an eye out for actors we haven't used or directors or even types of sci-fi/fantasy films and tropes to add, please!
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Old 07-08-19, 11:50 PM
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Re: 12th Annual Sci-Fi/Fantasy Challenge Discussion Thread

I watched Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory tonight, twice actually since I watched it straight through then watched the commentary version with all 5 children actors (grown up). Not the most exciting commentary, but once they hit the factory, it was interesting. The actor who played Augustus Gloop does not speak much, mainly because of the language barrier but the rest comment pretty frequently.

I think I enjoy this version the most because it's been part of my childhood for so long. Gene Wilder really does a much better job as Wonka, but even the inconsistencies from the book are likeable if only because I've enjoyed the film for so long. The newer version is shiny and fun and Freddie Highmore is a very cute and sweet Charlie, but Willy Wonka is going to be number one for me.

Edit: I own the 40th Anniversary set with the all the extras, including the book, "Pure Imagination" by Mel Stuart, the director. I'm pretty sure that the commentary from the kid actors was taken directly from this book which is slightly annoying. I bet they got cheat sheets with quotes directly taken from the book as what they say is pretty word for word in spots. Not saying there isn't original things, but quite a few are from the book.

Also, I'd like to say I wrote everything above the "edit" line before reading. Looks like I changed my main thought from "this film is like wearing a cozy pjs at night" to "being part of my childhood for so long..." In the book, they quote a magazine, saying it's a "video equivalent of an overstuffed comforter." That's exactly how I feel about this film!

2nd edit: Okay, Stuart, in the closing remarks of the book, shares that the commentary was filmed for the 30th Anniversary. The means the book was written after the commentary so maybe he copied the stories. I'm not sure as the facts did seem stilted in how they were produced!

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Old 07-09-19, 01:48 PM
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Re: 12th Annual Sci-Fi/Fantasy Challenge Discussion Thread

Well... I didn't watch the Mutant version of Forbidden World last night. It was getting late so I changed movies to one a bit shorter.

I started the evening with a BR viewing of Time Bandits, a long time favorite. I especially love the Robin Hood part with Cleese, as Robin, handing out the loot with a "Thank you very much" while his side-kick is punching them in the head. Robin asks "Is that necessary?" with a reply of "Absolutely" and "Well... OK then." and continues to hand out loot.

That was followed by The Asylum mega blockbuster Princess of Mars (aka John Carter of Mars and Avatar of Mars) with the magnificent talents of Antonio Sabato Jr. and Traci Lords. Yes... I jest. It's yet another in a long string of ripoff movies from our cheesy buddies at The Asylum. This one is slightly better than some others but no great shakes. Sabato Jr. is a bit miscast and Traci Lords is horribly miscast. It got the title "Avatar of Mars" when it ran on cable and the cover touts "The classic story that inspired James Cameron's Avatar." Ummm... Not really. Cameron only says he wanted to "update the style of Edgar Rice Burroughs's John Carter series." whatever that means. If they share anything it's the "avatar" going to "Pandora" and finding a "princess" to "save." The rest is a ripoff of Disney's Pocahontas among many other sources.

I finished the night with a BR viewing ofThe Cyclops from Mr. BIG (Bert I. Gordon). It's an old, quite cheesy, favorite. The BR looks excellent! I'm glad I waited and didn't cave on the DVD BOD release.
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Old 07-09-19, 09:06 PM
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Re: 12th Annual Sci-Fi/Fantasy Challenge Discussion Thread

I saw the new Aladdin today. It was alright. Better than I thought it would be. Will Smith is alright as the Genie, but honestly, anyone not Robin Williams would get the same reaction from me. They had a couple songs, but the main ones were used as well. It was very visually beautiful. A taste of Bollywood was in it, and I wish they had embraced it a lot more. While I'm still on the fence of these live action remakes, at least Disney does try to honor the original without redoing them scene for scene. The ending is changed a fair amount, but the gist of it stays the same.

Overall, it's watchable, but not near as good as the original. Go see it for the pretty colors.
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