Tuesday, May 03, 2005

Bats in the Belfry and the Undead on my Lawn

The website ComingSoon.net has become one of my favorite daily visits due to their selection of trailers that can be viewed without mucking around with Quicktime or Real Player or what have you. Today I took a peek at two upcoming films: Batman Begins and Land of the Dead.

Batman Begins looked good to me, and of course the cast is stellar (no sign of Gary Oldman in the trailer, unfortunately). Having not read the comic book, I cannot profess to be a Batman expert, but it seems to me that part of why this one looks promising from a general audience standpoint is in the villains they chose. Like it or not, people still have images of the TV series in their heads whenever Batman is discussed, and the particular campy way the villains were portrayed on the series seemed to carry over to all four of the films that came out between 1989 and 1997. With this new film and new villains, the ghosts of Frank Gorshin, Burgess Meredith and Otto Preminger have been laid to rest and been replaced by villains that most people have no pre-conceived notions of, which I argue is a very good thing.

As for Land of the Dead, I was stoked. I had seen all three original Romero films and enjoyed the recent resurgence of the genre with 28 Days Later, the Dawn of the Dead remake and Shaun of the Dead. I was really, really excited about this one.


What changed? Well, I have four words for you: Zombies firing machine guns. Fast zombies I was able to accept, folks, but not this. Of course, the trailer could be misleading as trailers often are. That could be a good, living guy disguised as a zombie for the purpose of an ambush, but I'm fearing the worst. I may chalk this film down a notch on my "must see" list. Besides, the presence of Dennis Hopper simply doesn't inspire as much confidence as it used to.

(This can also be viewed at Blogcritics)

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