SPEED RACER

New movies! Old movies! B-movies! Discuss discuss discuss!!!

Go Go or No Go Speed Racer?

10
11
24%
9
11
24%
8
5
11%
7
8
18%
6
3
7%
5
2
4%
4
2
4%
3
0
No votes
2
0
No votes
1
3
7%
 
Total votes : 45

Postby Zarles on Tue Jun 03, 2008 12:57 am

I meant a new look and feel, not new material entirely. The cartoon doesn't really look much like the movie, no other movie I've ever seen looks like it, and every other movie adaptation of old cartoon shows that has been attempted usually ends up turning out really stupid. Flintstones much?
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Postby Peven on Tue Jun 03, 2008 12:59 am

Retardo_Montalban wrote:
Zarles wrote:It's certainly been the most imaginative. I like seeing sequels like Indy and Pirates and the like to re-visit characters I enjoy, but when something like this comes along and brings something entirely new to the table, it's even more exciting. I'm pissed that there probably won't be any more of them.


Entirely new? This a remake of a cartoon from the 50's. It's only fresh because it isn't over saturated like that other stuff you mentioned.


have you seen the movie, Retardo? it may be based on material that has been around a while, but the manner in which they translated that onto the big screen was entirely fresh and innovative and has never been done before, bit like that. the visual style they used, aside from the cgi stuff, was much much more artistic than anything you see in "Indy", or "Iron Man", or any of the other movies that have made good money so far this year too.
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Postby Retardo_Montalban on Tue Jun 03, 2008 1:06 am

I did see it, and I liked it, but artistic and innovative doesn't really come to mind in regards to it. The color palette was pretty much lifted straight out of the cartoon and I can't say something is innovative just because it uses super expensive technology to make.
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Postby Tyrone_Shoelaces on Tue Jun 03, 2008 1:43 am

It's not the expensive technology that makes it innovative, it's the way they use it. It's almost like they're painting with pixels because this thing is pop-art come to life. Lichtenstein probably would have loved it and Koons probably has his minions copying it right now.
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The Official "SPEED RACER" Thread (Spoilers)

Postby bastard_robo on Tue Jun 03, 2008 3:03 am

Retardo_Montalban wrote:I did see it, and I liked it, but artistic and innovative doesn't really come to mind in regards to it. The color palette was pretty much lifted straight out of the cartoon and I can't say something is innovative just because it uses super expensive technology to make.


What fucking cartoons are you watching??? I'm a grown man who still watches cartoons and I haven't seen any color palette like whats in SPEED RACER since maybe YELLOW SUBMARINE!

Fuck, even EXCEL SAGA, probably one of the most out there ANIMES in the last decade, with a wild color palette, didn't have images like what SPEED RACER had.

Seriously, what cartoons are you watching that have that look, cause I want to see them!
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Postby Pacino86845 on Tue Jun 03, 2008 5:21 am

burlivesleftnut wrote:The more I think about the disappointing returns of this movie, the more I am pissed off. It was marketed so badly. Where was the Speed Racer marathons on Cartoon Network. Why on earth did the trailers try to leverage the creators of the Matrix as a pull for the family? Why didn't the trailers emphasize the brilliant action instead of minute outlandish clips that make no sense in context. This is one of the greatest family movies since Incredibles, and it dies on the vine. I am infuriated.

The Wachowski's have now proven to me their brilliance... enough to get me over the crappy Matrix sequels... AND THAT SAYS SOMETHING. Because I am all cool and stuff and people look for my opinion on things because I am cool and shit...


but not as cool as Bluebottle.


You said it... on top of everything you mentioned about the marketing, they could've also given some hints as to the amount of heart this film has, which is what surprised and won me over by the end.

We should write a letter to the Wachowskis.
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Postby Zarles on Tue Jun 03, 2008 8:28 am

Pacino86845 wrote:We should write a letter to the Wachowskis.


I'm in.
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Postby burlivesleftnut on Tue Jun 03, 2008 9:51 am

Online petition?
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Postby havocSchultz on Tue Jun 03, 2008 9:57 am

LaDracul wrote:and that makes a shitload of money probably because of the exorbitant ticket prices in major cities.




Correct me if I'm wrong...but don't theatres charge the same amount for all the movies...?
So doesn't that mean that any and all movies that open in said major city get a chance to make the same exorbitant amount of money per ticket...?

If not, then it sucks to be you guys...
Cause up here they don't pick and choose which movies cost what amount to go and see...

I would hate to have to go to a theatre and not know how much they'd be charging me to see anything...
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Postby Vegeta on Tue Jun 03, 2008 10:39 am

havocSchultz wrote:
LaDracul wrote:and that makes a shitload of money probably because of the exorbitant ticket prices in major cities.




Correct me if I'm wrong...but don't theatres charge the same amount for all the movies...?
So doesn't that mean that any and all movies that open in said major city get a chance to make the same exorbitant amount of money per ticket...?

If not, then it sucks to be you guys...
Cause up here they don't pick and choose which movies cost what amount to go and see...

I would hate to have to go to a theatre and not know how much they'd be charging me to see anything...


You are correct, sir! At least to my knowledge that is... I don't live in L.A. or NYC, so I can't speak for theatres there.

DaleTremont wrote:
I believe Jeff Robinov is the man in charge of production who vowed the studio would never make movies with female leads. I'm not saying the Sex and the City movie is some masterpiece. I'm not even saying it's good (it's not), but there is some value in a woman-centric movie opening at 70 million against heavy-hitting competitors like Indy. Even if it is a movie where women *gasp* have sex. Nothing shameful about that.


SATC only made $56.8 million domestically this weekend. Still very impressive against the competition. :shock:
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Postby Pacino86845 on Tue Jun 03, 2008 10:56 am

By the way did you guys know that Larry Wachowski is still a dude? He never had a sex-change operation and never planned on it... even at the end of Speed Racer the credit was: "Directed by the Wachowski Brothers."
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Postby havocSchultz on Tue Jun 03, 2008 10:59 am

Pacino86845 wrote:By the way did you guys know that Larry Wachowski is still a dude? He never had a sex-change operation and never planned on it... even at the end of Speed Racer the credit was: "Directed by the Wachowski Brothers."


Well, to be fair, they were planning to use the profits of Speed Racer to perform the operation...
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Postby max314 on Fri Jun 06, 2008 9:00 am

NO NEED FOR SPEED
An Analysis of Speed Racer and its Critical and Commercial Failure





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An Addiction for Breaking the Limit:

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"...I realized a lot of this negativism was sounding familiar to me. Too long. Too loud. Too overwhelming visually with lots of mindless sound and fury signifying nothing. And I realized where and when I had heard it all before:

Blade Runner.

Critics and fans leveled many of the same complaints at
Blade Runner, comparing it unfavorably to other then-popular SF films, and it was crushed at the box office by a powerhouse called E.T.. Blade Runner tanked.

Yet over time it was seen as visionary, and its stylings let an indelible impression on fans and future filmmakers. Any number of dramatic endeavors have the visual stamp of
Blade Runner upon them.

I think that's what's happened here. I think
Speed Racer, consistent for its title character, is ahead of the pack, and no one has realized it yet."
--Peter David
(Novelist and Screenwriter)


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The Wachowski Brothers are notorious for creating dark and daring 'R' rated works, such as the lesbian crime noir Bound, the literary cyberpunk epoch known as The Matrix Trilogy, and the screenplay to a controversial film about a super-terrorist who bombs London called V for Vendetta. So when news reached the wire that the Brothers were preparing to adapt an overtly cheesy and colourful Japanese kids' cartoon from the '60s, most didn't seem to know how to react. As the production photos came through, this indecisiveness began to manifest itself as outright divisiveness. And by the time the first trailers were released, most people had assorted themselves into one of two camps - love or hate - with the remaining masses voicing varying degrees of indifference.

No doubt, part of the love/hate dynamic was determined by those peoples' views of the latter two Matrix films, both of which are generally considered to be inferior to the original. It's quite possible that the taste left by those films lead some to hate the prospect of Speed Racer even more than they might have done if other filmmakers had been involved. But the reasons for some peoples' dislike of the film from such an early stage probably has more to do with mere dislike of the filmmakers' back catalogue. A lot of the negativity perhaps had something to do with peoples' attitudes toward the type of film being presented. With the advent of George Lucas' CGI-heavy Star Wars prequel trilogy, it's likely that people were less than enthusiastic about another colourful CGI film. Of course, this didn't seem to be a problem with films like 300 or Sin City...which brings us onto the next point. The film's tone. 300 and Sin City were dark, brooding and bloody. Popular traits in movies these days. Yet Speed Racer was looking to be none of the above. Instead, producer Joel Silver explained that the Wachowskis were aiming for the type of optimistic tonality not seen in Hollywood since Frank Capra in the 1950s, and they also drew on the optimism and sincerity of Japanese animé like Hayao Miyazaki’s The Castle of Cagliostro. In a time when cynicism manages to find its way into even the lightest of family fare, making such a dramatic U-turn and bucking the trend was no doubt a substantial risk. But then, it wouldn't be the first time the Wachowskis had spent millions on a gamble to challenge the Hollywood status quo. If anyone could do it, it was them.

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No Go at the Box Office:

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There's a scene in Speed Racer when the evil tycoon Royaltan, played quite superbly by Roger Allam, threatens the titular character that the consequences for not signing his corporate contract would be that "no matter how well you drive, you won't win, you won't place, I guarantee you right now...you won't even finish the race". And it seems that the film is also suffering for sticking to its guns.

By the time pre-release tracking for Speed Racer hit its stride in the weeks before the film's May 9th release date, the figures were already looking down. And on May 9th, Speed Racer - supposedly one of Warner Brothers' two biggest tent pole releases of the Summer (the other one being The Dark Knight) - crashed spectacularly with a shocking $18.6 million box office. Even the Cameron Diaz / Ashton Kutcher vehicle What Happens in Vegas managed to breach the $20 million mark. Iron Man had soared to a mighty $98.6 million opening on the previous weekend, and would continue to dominate on Speed Racer's opening weekend, taking an additional $51.1 million in the process.

Iron Man was now the main contender, and it had all the momentum it needed for the weeks ahead. Though nowhere near as bad as Speed Racer, The Chronicles of Narnia: Prince Caspian - the sequel to the monumentally successful 2005 original - was tempered with its own underwhelming opening take of $55 million. And then the last May giant, Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull roared into the month's final week to the tune of over $100 million.

Now in its third week, Speed Racer couldn't even manage a measly $4 million.

Current estimates peg Speed Racer's domestic gross at $41.1 million.

So what went so badly wrong?

The answer: everything.

It rubbed critics up the wrong way. Its marketing campaign was confused and ineffective (mental note: don't use hardcore techno music on trailers for family films). It was a relatively unknown property and its stars weren't as big as, say, Ahston Kutcher or Cameron Diaz. And it was going up against a sea of giants like Iron Man, Narnia and Indiana Jones.

Of all these factors, perhaps the most intriguing were the critical reviews. While a solitary few granted Speed Racer prestigious 4 and 5 star ratings, most reviewers were either apathetic or completely scathing of the final product. Rotten Tomatoes T-Meter is now set at 35%. Metacritic is at 37%. Joe Morgenstern of 'The Wall Street Journal' described the film as "a nightmare vision of children's entertainment" that employs "overstimulation as an organising principle". Kyle Smith of the 'New York Post' thought it was "basically a video game fed by hyperactivity instead of interactivity". And Ann Hornaday of the 'Washington Post' simply feels that "after they've passed the two-hour mark, viewers will share the same collective, if unspoken, wish: Go, Speed Racer. Go". With reviews like these piling up in reputable news outlets around the country, it's little surprise that the few people who were actually aware of the film (I've met a number of people who still haven't even heard of Speed Racer) decided to stay away.

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A Light at the End of the Tunnel:

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While this may all seem like obvious doom and gloom, and the studio will no doubt be feeling the pinch for months to come, the film has actually stacked up some impressive statistics. A Cinema Score test screening, which was comprised of diverse demographics, scored a high A-. The Rotten Tomatoes community T-Meter stands at 77%, in spite of systemic abuse by arbitrary haters who collectively hit the "rotten" rating en masse before the film was even released. Similar abuse was seen at the user rating system on IMDB, which nonetheless stands at 6.6/10, with a median average of 8/10. Yahoo Movies stands at a positive B-, and the user rating at Metacritic is at a lofty 8/10.

This chasm between critical and audience reception is telling. Audiences who actually saw the film seemed to have generally favourable views towards it.

And the dissent against Speed Racer's critical consensus doesn't stop there. Industry insiders and prolific personalities are even being compelled to pitch in to the Speed Racer debate. Famed novelist and comic book writer Peter David draws parallels between the vitriolic critical reception of Speed Racer and the seminal science fiction classic Blade Runner, maintaining that many of the same complaints levelled at Speed Racer bare a striking resemblance to those directed towards the now-loved classic, in spite of the fact that both films challenged the Hollywood standard of production design and the conventional understanding of cinematic visuals. He thinks that "Speed Racer may crash, but like a first rate car, it's going to be cannibalized for its parts". Glenn Kenny of 'Premiere' magazine compares the visual and emotional intensity of the film's final moments to Kubrick's masterpiece, 2001: A Space Odyssey, maintaining he "half–expected that the movie would end with Speed metamorphosed into a giant wide-eyed baby, hovering in space above the earth". And 'Time' magazine's Richard Corliss described the film by lifting a quotation from it, concluding that Speed Racer is "inspiring, and beautiful, and everything art should be".

So despite all the negativity, the generally poor critical reception, and the dismal box office turn out, it would appear that Speed Racer is in possession of some redemptive features. In fact, one might even argue that it is in possession of some potentially revolutionary features. I happen to sympathise with that view. I think that Speed Racer, like every Wachowski Brothers film ever made, takes real and tangible risks. Risks that may not always pay off at the box office, but have the potential to become the medium's defining classics in years to come.

Could it be that Speed Racer has only just left the starting block?

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Postby havocSchultz on Fri Jun 06, 2008 9:16 am

Speed Racer would've done better if they had Ricci re-enact the scene from Bound with herself...
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Postby Retardo_Montalban on Fri Jun 06, 2008 9:17 am

havocSchultz wrote:Speed Racer would've done better if they had Ricci re-enact the scene from Bound with herself...


It would have done even better if she would have reenacted the scene from bound with Chim Chim.
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Postby Nordling on Fri Jun 06, 2008 9:18 am

Did you write that? That was exceptionally well done.
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Postby Pacino86845 on Fri Jun 06, 2008 9:49 am

Yeah those comments are right on the money.
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Postby max314 on Fri Jun 06, 2008 10:54 am

LaDracul wrote:Amen to that. Although WB are really being a-holes about it, refusing to take Joel Silver's calls now.


Whoa...seriously?!

But he delivered them a multi-billion dollar profit with The Matrix Trilogy?

How can a single flop be enough for Warners to stab him in the back like that?

Again, WB, you gleefully rag on something that everyone can enjoy (Although there's a number of reasons they couldn't have gone to the theater), yet you hype up a film about middle aged women who have sex shamelessly which appeals to future cougars and ghey men, and that makes a shitload of money probably because of the exorbitant ticket prices in major cities.


One thing about the Wachowskis is that they will take risks. They manage to fool studios into investing in films that are essentially just big, experimental art house movies. With just enough of a mainstream "twist" for the studio to believe that it's marketable.

Not to say that the Brothers make films to loose money. It's just that I don't think they're as bothered with the money aspect as some filmmakers. If they can't find work in Hollywood, they seem more than happy to continue writing comics.

Who the hell is in charge of this studio again? Sorry, but if I want to see a female-centered film from them, it would be something like "Wonder Woman", which they keep putting off.
:lol:

burlivesleftnut wrote:The more I think about the disappointing returns of this movie, the more I am pissed off. It was marketed so badly. Where was the Speed Racer marathons on Cartoon Network. Why on earth did the trailers try to leverage the creators of the Matrix as a pull for the family? Why didn't the trailers emphasize the brilliant action instead of minute outlandish clips that make no sense in context. This is one of the greatest family movies since Incredibles, and it dies on the vine. I am infuriated.

The Wachowski's have now proven to me their brilliance... enough to get me over the crappy Matrix sequels... AND THAT SAYS SOMETHING. Because I am all cool and stuff and people look for my opinion on things because I am cool and shit...


but not as cool as Bluebottle.


I happened to really like The Matrix Reloaded and The Matrix Revolutions, and I've spent the last five years (Christ, has it really been that long...?) standing up for them. I do accept that a lot of people don't like them, but I also think others should accept that liking The Matrix Trilogy as a whole is a legitimate point of view.

As for Speed Racer, I agree with you. The film didn't get the box office it deserved. From the sound of things, this was the most original and one of the most exciting movies of the Summer so far. And it's a shame that it crashed so badly.

Zarles wrote:It's certainly been the most imaginative. I like seeing sequels like Indy and Pirates and the like to re-visit characters I enjoy, but when something like this comes along and brings something entirely new to the table, it's even more exciting. I'm pissed that there probably won't be any more of them.


Definitely.

Even though Speed Racer wraps up perfectly as a standalone film, there is so much that's being set up in the film. Silver said that the Wachowskis have already come to him with ideas for a potential sequel and that they've got a whole new story planned out. With box office numbers being the way they are, however, I doubt Speed Racer 2 will ever exist.

Retardo_Montalban wrote:Entirely new? This a remake of a cartoon from the 50's. It's only fresh because it isn't over saturated like that other stuff you mentioned.


It uses the characters, cars, and basic story from the series as a template.

But the film is such a vast evolutionary step up from the original series that it more than stands on its own as a groundbreaking work of art. The detail in this thing is incredible, and it even reinvents the visual vocabulary of live action cinema, blending elements of both animé and video games (just check out the "ghost car" gag being used to poignant dramatic effect) into a medium that's becoming rather stagnant and samey.

Retardo_Montalban wrote:I did see it, and I liked it, but artistic and innovative doesn't really come to mind in regards to it. The color palette was pretty much lifted straight out of the cartoon and I can't say something is innovative just because it uses super expensive technology to make.


Okay...

...I'M WRITING THIS IN BIG LETTERS BECAUSE THIS IS A VERY IMPORTANT POINT.

Just because it uses computer technology, that doesn't make its creation a walk in the park.

The production design on this film was super detailed. It doesn't matter if you're making it out of polygons or plasticine...time must still be spent on the production design. And Owen Paterson and the detail-obsessed Wachowskis spent months on designing every last aspect of the film's look...right down to the ads on the billboards and the colour of the kettle in the kitchen.

Then the CG artists have to spend countless hours creating the actual scenes. No less time or effort goes into making a CG model or a rubber model. In fact, given the amount of detail going into these shots, it probably takes a heckuva lot longer to create the CG shots.

Then they have to get it approved and adjusted by the Brothers, and then it has to go back. The Brothers were literally overseeing over 100 shots every day during post production. This ain't no picnic. And they've gotta do this while holding the vision of the finished film in their imaginations.

And that's not even counting the number of man hours and the amount of creative talent required to come up with revolutionary new technologies to create the environments and to place the characters within them.

So let's get over this whole "CG = lazy" thing. The only thing that's shortened is the shooting process. But that's more than compensated for both before and after the "initial capture" stage, during which EVERY LAST DETAIL HAS TO BE DESIGNED.

They're literally building a world from the ground up.

That's not easy.

Pacino86845 wrote:You said it... on top of everything you mentioned about the marketing, they could've also given some hints as to the amount of heart this film has, which is what surprised and won me over by the end.

We should write a letter to the Wachowskis.


Yes we should :lol:

By the way did you guys know that Larry Wachowski is still a dude? He never had a sex-change operation and never planned on it... even at the end of Speed Racer the credit was: "Directed by the Wachowski Brothers."


It was just a rumour created by the press to try and goad the Wachowskis into talking to them.

Unlike some filmmakers *cough*QuentinTarantino*cough* the Wachowskis don't like talking about themselves. They seem to think it's just shallow and egotistical and would rather their films do the talking.

Of course, if you approach them casually they're apparently very friendly, approachable, interesting guys.

Nordling wrote:Did you write that? That was exceptionally well done.


I'm afraid I did. And thank you, kind sir.

Pacino86845 wrote:Yeah those comments are right on the money.


Mmm... Money :D
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Postby Pacino86845 on Fri Jun 06, 2008 11:08 am

max314 wrote:
Pacino86845 wrote:Yeah those comments are right on the money.


Mmm... Money :D


"Name one of two things the film Speed Racer didn't get," Mr. Trebek!
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Postby The Ginger Man on Fri Jun 06, 2008 11:22 am

Nordling wrote:Did you write that? That was exceptionally well done.


I agree with Nordling. Well done, sir. And welcome to the zone. Hopefully you'll be writing more like that in the future.
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Postby max314 on Fri Jun 06, 2008 12:12 pm

Pacino86845 wrote:
max314 wrote:
Pacino86845 wrote:Yeah those comments are right on the money.


Mmm... Money :D


"Name one of two things the film Speed Racer didn't get," Mr. Trebek!


Haha...indeed :lol:

The Ginger Man wrote:I agree with Nordling. Well done, sir. And welcome to the zone. Hopefully you'll be writing more like that in the future.


Thanks, that's very gracious of you to say so.
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Postby Peven on Fri Jun 06, 2008 1:51 pm

this movie was one of those great examples that revealed what a bunch of tools the vast majority reviewers are.

those who can, do, those who can't, review....
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Postby max314 on Fri Jun 06, 2008 1:53 pm

Peven wrote:this movie was one of those great examples that revealed what a bunch of tools the vast majority reviewers are.

those who can, do, those who can't, review....


Haha...fuckin' eh :lol:

I find I'm only able to review certain films. Films that I feel compelled to review.
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Postby Lord Voldemoo on Fri Jun 06, 2008 2:12 pm

Those who can, do; those who can't, review; those who can't review, bitch about reviewers on internet forums!
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Postby Peven on Fri Jun 06, 2008 2:13 pm

i forgot, this place is for trading recipes..........
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Postby Zarles on Fri Jun 06, 2008 4:10 pm

PL4NT!

Nah, just kidding. Exceptionally well-written. If a letter does get written to the Wachowskis, a large portion of that piece should be included in it.
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Postby Pacino86845 on Fri Jun 06, 2008 4:24 pm

Damn it, I wanted to watch this film a second time, too bad the one r-tarded theater that was playing Speed Racer stopped showing it after two weeks. TWO WEEKS!!!
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Postby max314 on Fri Jun 06, 2008 5:14 pm

Lord Voldemoo wrote:Those who can, do; those who can't, review; those who can't review, bitch about reviewers on internet forums!


There's nothing wrong with taking issue with a critics' opinions. The beauty of the internet is precisely that - it's a medium where everyone has the opportunity to publish their views.

I don't see why a forumite's opinions are any less worthy than those of a "professional" reviewer. Who don't even get it right half the time, anyway :lol:

Zarles wrote:PL4NT!

Nah, just kidding. Exceptionally well-written. If a letter does get written to the Wachowskis, a large portion of that piece should be included in it.


That's very nice of you. I'm sure there's a good chance they've read it already since they're pretty active gamers and web users. And I'm pretty sure AICN is one of their internet stops, since Joel Silver was going on about it in his AICN interview a while back. Plus they probably know the reasons it went wrong better than we do...Warners have no doubt assembled a whole team to figure out what the hell just happened :lol:

Pacino86845 wrote:Damn it, I wanted to watch this film a second time, too bad the one r-tarded theater that was playing Speed Racer stopped showing it after two weeks. TWO WEEKS!!!


Bummer.
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Postby Zarles on Fri Jun 06, 2008 5:55 pm

If WB is smart, the Blu-Ray release of this will break as many visual boundaries as the movie did. The people who liked this movie are obviously going to buy it when it comes out (myself included), so I think it might to be wise to make up a few bucks lost at the BO by going all-out for the DVD release.

Much like Metal Gear Solid 4, Speed Racer will probably be the disc that will get me off my ass to go buy a Blu-Ray player.
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Postby Retardo_Montalban on Fri Jun 06, 2008 7:51 pm

max314 wrote:
Retardo_Montalban wrote:Entirely new? This is a remake of a cartoon from the 50's. It's only fresh because it isn't over saturated like that other stuff you mentioned.


It uses the characters, cars, and basic story from the series as a template.

But the film is such a vast evolutionary step up from the original series that it more than stands on its own as a groundbreaking work of art. The detail in this thing is incredible, and it even reinvents the visual vocabulary of live action cinema, blending elements of both animé and video games (just check out the "ghost car" gag being used to poignant dramatic effect) into a medium that's becoming rather stagnant and samey.

Retardo_Montalban wrote:I did see it, and I liked it, but artistic and innovative doesn't really come to mind in regards to it. The color palette was pretty much lifted straight out of the cartoon and I can't say something is innovative just because it uses super expensive technology to make.


Okay...

...I'M WRITING THIS IN BIG LETTERS BECAUSE THIS IS A VERY IMPORTANT POINT.

Just because it uses computer technology, that doesn't make its creation a walk in the park.

The production design on this film was super detailed. It doesn't matter if you're making it out of polygons or plasticine...time must still be spent on the production design. And Owen Paterson and the detail-obsessed Wachowskis spent months on designing every last aspect of the film's look...right down to the ads on the billboards and the colour of the kettle in the kitchen.

Then the CG artists have to spend countless hours creating the actual scenes. No less time or effort goes into making a CG model or a rubber model. In fact, given the amount of detail going into these shots, it probably takes a heckuva lot longer to create the CG shots.

Then they have to get it approved and adjusted by the Brothers, and then it has to go back. The Brothers were literally overseeing over 100 shots every day during post production. This ain't no picnic. And they've gotta do this while holding the vision of the finished film in their imaginations.

And that's not even counting the number of man hours and the amount of creative talent required to come up with revolutionary new technologies to create the environments and to place the characters within them.

So let's get over this whole "CG = lazy" thing. The only thing that's shortened is the shooting process. But that's more than compensated for both before and after the "initial capture" stage, during which EVERY LAST DETAIL HAS TO BE DESIGNED.

They're literally building a world from the ground up.

That's not easy.



I dunno, I really liked the film, but the more I read people over reacting to it, the less excited I get about it. You can't go around saying this thing is some huge evolution over the original anime, man. The film doesn't add anything to it other than being live action. I don't think the color palette is anything new because it is just primary and secondary colors. The easiest pallette to work with. I've seen the original Charlie and The Chocolate Factory, so the colors aren't new. The ghost track didn't wow me. That's been standard issue in Mario Kart for at least a decade now.

You've also totally misquoted me over the computer technology thing. I know how much work went into it, but a lot of work doesn't equal artistic merit. Speed Racer is anything but an art house flick. I'd agree with a super stylized Blockbuster movie that is heavily influenced by anime.

Even if this really was an art house movie it wouldn't ever make money. The point to art house movies is to challenge the viewer, make them question reality. The plots aren't straight forward, They try to shy away from cliche plot devices. I'm talking Un Chien Andalou, 2001, Dreams, Gus Van Sant films, Terry Gilliam movies, Paprika, The Squid and the Whale, etc. These movies don't make alot of dime, and they aren't aiming to either.

The plot to this movie is straight forward. The characters are straight forward. The visual medium is hyper stylized, but doesn't push a lot of boundaries. The action is inventive and the dialogue pops, which makes the Wachowskis a kin to Spielberg, but not Kubrick.
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Postby Tyrone_Shoelaces on Fri Jun 06, 2008 7:57 pm

I watched game one of the NBA Finals last night and it was chock-a-block with movie advertising. I was disappointed that WB didn't try one last effort to get people out to see Speed Racer, but I assume that most theaters are dropping it this weekend. Bummer.

I so hope that for the home video campaign they change up the strategy and focus on the fun and heart this movie is full of. Try some of those 'man on the street' interview type commercials with moviegoers raving about the movie. The Blu-ray of this is going to be incredible and I hope it explodes on home video.
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Postby max314 on Fri Jun 06, 2008 8:49 pm

Retardo_Montalban wrote:I dunno, I really liked the film, but the more I read people over reacting to it, the less excited I get about it. You can't go around saying this thing is some huge evolution over the original anime, man. The film doesn't add anything to it other than being live action.


Compare this to this.

The film adds a lot. Including depth and dimension to the story and the characters.

I don't think the color palette is anything new because it is just primary and secondary colors. The easiest pallette to work with. I've seen the original Charlie and The Chocolate Factory, so the colors aren't new.


Just because they're primary colours, that doesn't make them easy to use in a considered, thoughtful, and artistic way.

And I don't think Charlie and the Chocolate Factory had quite the colour palette that this does...particularly in the night time racing scenes.

The ghost track didn't wow me. That's been standard issue in Mario Kart for at least a decade now.


With all due respect, I don't think you appreciate what I'm getting at here.

The fact that the Brothers were using a racing game convention was cool enough. But the fact that they actually used it to such poignant dramatic effect is what is so ingenious about it.

You've also totally misquoted me over the computer technology thing. I know how much work went into it, but a lot of work doesn't equal artistic merit. Speed Racer is anything but an art house flick. I'd agree with a super stylized Blockbuster movie that is heavily influenced by anime.


I made it quite clear that it was both effort and imagination and vision that gave this film its artistic merit.

Even if this really was an art house movie it wouldn't ever make money. The point to art house movies is to challenge the viewer, make them question reality. The plots aren't straight forward, They try to shy away from cliche plot devices. I'm talking Un Chien Andalou, 2001, Dreams, Gus Van Sant films, Terry Gilliam movies, Paprika, The Squid and the Whale, etc. These movies don't make alot of dime, and they aren't aiming to either.

The plot to this movie is straight forward. The characters are straight forward. The visual medium is hyper stylized, but doesn't push a lot of boundaries. The action is inventive and the dialogue pops...


Speed Racer takes place in a completely alternate reality where you enter a Star Gate-like zone by becoming one with your car!

It's family friendly avant-garde!

And if that ain't some risky reality-bending, I don't know what is :D

...which makes the Wachowskis a kin to Spielberg, but not Kubrick.


With regards to Speed Racer, yes. But I think they "pulled a Kubrick" with The Matrix Trilogy.

Tyrone_Shoelaces wrote:I watched game one of the NBA Finals last night and it was chock-a-block with movie advertising. I was disappointed that WB didn't try one last effort to get people out to see Speed Racer, but I assume that most theaters are dropping it this weekend. Bummer.

I so hope that for the home video campaign they change up the strategy and focus on the fun and heart this movie is full of. Try some of those 'man on the street' interview type commercials with moviegoers raving about the movie. The Blu-ray of this is going to be incredible and I hope it explodes on home video.


Me too.

You make some good points about the home video release, and I really hope it all works out.
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Postby Lord Voldemoo on Fri Jun 06, 2008 10:30 pm

wow i was finally going to catch this tonight with my brother but it's not playing anywhere within 20 miles of Seattle after 7:05pm.

Talk about box office wasteland.

Guess i'll have to try to catch a matinee before it disappears completely....
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Re: The Official "SPEED RACER" Thread (Spoilers)

Postby max314 on Sun Jun 08, 2008 10:42 pm

Yup, the film is almost gone.
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Postby Zarles on Sun Jun 08, 2008 11:17 pm

And yet 'You Don't Want To Go See The Zohan' makes $40 mil this weekend, more than Speed Racer made in over a week. That's just fucking sad. I'm sure The Love Guru will make 11 billion in its first weekend, too.

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Re: SPEED RACER

Postby Tyrone_Shoelaces on Mon Jun 09, 2008 2:56 am

I might buy a bunch of the DVDs and give them to everyone for Christmas.

I was in Wal-Mart a few days ago and checked on the Speed Racer stuff because I just bought the Hot Wheels Mach 5 with jump jacks and was contemplating another purchase. I get to the aisle and there's someone marking up the Hot Wheels stuff. Struck me as odd that they can't get anyone to see the movie and they're raising the prices on the merch. Of course, it won't be long before its all on clearance.
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Re:

Postby max314 on Mon Jun 09, 2008 8:00 am

Zarles wrote:And yet 'You Don't Want To Go See The Zohan' makes $40 mil this weekend, more than Speed Racer made in over a week. That's just fucking sad. I'm sure The Love Guru will make 11 billion in its first weekend, too.

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I still don't understand how Speed Racer did so bad. I mean, it wasn't even a moderate failure. It was a monumental flop.

The way things are going, the film won't even make its production cost back, let alone the $80 million spent on marketing.

The film has yet to open in a number of foreign territories, and it opens in Japan in July. But I doubt that's going to do much to save the film.

What makes it even worse is the fact that it's probably the best of the bunch! And lesser films are making more!

Yeesh...it's been a total disaster.
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Re: SPEED RACER

Postby RogueScribner on Mon Jun 09, 2008 8:07 am

Racing movies don't make bank unless they're comedies. The Fast and the Furious is the only exception and it featured lots of (real looking) stunt work. Speed Racer was like Cars without the jokes, the heart, or the Pixar (at least according to the ads which is what convinces people to pay money to the see it). And I don't think touting its Matrix connection helped either, since those weren't family films and this film desperately needed to attract family audiences.
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Re: SPEED RACER

Postby Peven on Mon Jun 09, 2008 8:32 am

RogueScribner wrote:Racing movies don't make bank unless they're comedies. The Fast and the Furious is the only exception and it featured lots of (real looking) stunt work. Speed Racer was like Cars without the jokes, the heart, or the Pixar (at least according to the ads which is what convinces people to pay money to the see it). And I don't think touting its Matrix connection helped either, since those weren't family films and this film desperately needed to attract family audiences.



the thing of it is......it DID have "the heart", as well as spectacular visuals. it just didn't have the marketing to match... :P
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Re: SPEED RACER

Postby travis-dane on Mon Jun 09, 2008 1:53 pm

I wish I could write stuff like max314!
Some great posts up there man!I salute you...
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Re: SPEED RACER

Postby Spandau Belly on Mon Jun 09, 2008 2:34 pm

I guess I'm okay with a movie I like not making money, or seeing movies that I hate make absurd amounts of money. At the end of the day, you've still got that movie you love, just because it lost money doesn't mean the studio takes it away from you or something.

If what you guys are really talking about is public interest and you're using box office stats as a gage for public interest, then I guess I still feel the same way. I don't care if everybody else wants to see what I want to see as long as I get to see it.

Actually, most of the time when I talk about the movies I'm most excited about most people around me either can't believe it or haven't even heard of the movie I'm talking about.

But when it comes to Speed Racer, yes I'm surprised that a colorful kids movie failed to gain much interest. I thought the movie was pretty good, but recognized that it would have limited appeal out of the kiddie/family demographic.

Maybe McG's Sailor Moon movie will do better.
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Re: SPEED RACER

Postby Pacino86845 on Mon Jun 09, 2008 3:26 pm

I guess I can only speak for myself, but the reason I like to see the movies I like make money, and I should specify that I mean the bigger-budget films like Grindhouse or Speed Racer, is 'cause success at the box office would mean a bigger push for movies of that ilk... like Grindhouse is a good example, 'cause I'm guessing that even those who didn't particularly enjoy the final project, I think everyone dug the idea, and had Grindhouse made a lot of money we'd probably be seeing a bunch of double-features from a slew of genre directors. As it stands, we'll have to settle for Italian Spider-man...

As for Speed Racer, I don't know what making more money would've led to: more cheesy anime adaptations? We seem to be getting a bunch of those over the next few years... a Speed Racer sequel? Well, we all know the Wachowski track record when it comes to sequels...
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Re: SPEED RACER

Postby pajarerominn on Mon Jun 09, 2008 6:29 pm

well I think that it was a failure because it was geek oriented,it's not a movie oriented to regular film viewers,and geeks are just a sector of the whole population
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Re: SPEED RACER

Postby Retardo_Montalban on Mon Jun 09, 2008 8:47 pm

I don't know how geek oriented the movie actually is. It didn't really reference anything obscure or particularly niche. Racing is a pretty mainstream past time. I do think it was marketed wrong though. The trailers were cut to be this big action movie, and all that Makers of the Matrix stuff would give the impression that this movie isn't as kid oriented as it is. You don't have to be a speed racer fan to enjoy this type of movie at all. I didn't notice any happy meal franchise tie ins for the movie either, which can really affect a film like this. Maybe it turned a lot of people off because of the connection with an anime show.
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Re: SPEED RACER

Postby bastard_robo on Mon Jun 09, 2008 9:34 pm

pajarerominn wrote:well I think that it was a failure because it was geek oriented,it's not a movie oriented to regular film viewers,and geeks are just a sector of the whole population



the 4 times I saw this in theaters, everyone who left really seemed to like it.

The first night opening, I didnt hear one complaint from any one in the theater, and the other times, everyone seemed to enjoy it.

The problem was 2 fold..

1) It came out 1 week after IRON MAN... There was no way it stood a chance..
2) The trailers focused WAY to much on the corny dialog parts of the movie.. which there were very few. I think that the Wachowski's best written work is in this film.. but the trailers didn't focus on that, they just showed a lot of random stuff in the trailers and didn't give a hell of a lot in a way of the story other than Speed is going against some evil British guy.
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Re: SPEED RACER

Postby burlivesleftnut on Tue Jun 10, 2008 12:37 am

RogueScribner wrote:Racing movies don't make bank unless they're comedies. The Fast and the Furious is the only exception and it featured lots of (real looking) stunt work. Speed Racer was like Cars without the jokes, the heart, or the Pixar (at least according to the ads which is what convinces people to pay money to the see it). And I don't think touting its Matrix connection helped either, since those weren't family films and this film desperately needed to attract family audiences.


Days of Thunder, Fast and the Furious, Tokyo Drift. A racing movie doesn't HAVE to be comedic to score. I reiterate: this movie was doomed by marketing.
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Re: SPEED RACER

Postby RogueScribner on Tue Jun 10, 2008 12:59 am

I mentioned The Fast and the Furious as an exception.

Days of Thunder had disappointing box office, considering its cost ($82 million gross vs. $60 million budget). If it weren't for Ghost, Paramount would have been up shit creek that summer.
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Re: SPEED RACER

Postby pajarerominn on Tue Jun 10, 2008 3:53 am

when I say that is not for regular viewers I mean that sometimes when you force the aesthetics without an apparently logical reason (in the Matrix it was,they could do everything they do because the where on the matrix),people doesn't understand it well,don't feel it right.They force it to call geek attention,the attention of people who likes this particular kind of things.
when I went to the cinema I remember a lot of people saying it was a strange movie.
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Re: SPEED RACER

Postby max314 on Wed Jun 11, 2008 10:24 am

travis-dane wrote:I wish I could write stuff like max314!
Some great posts up there man!I salute you...


That's very nice of you. But to be honest, the points almost make themselves. Speed Racer's merits are so obvious that it's not hard to write about them :mrgreen:

Pacino86845 wrote:I guess I can only speak for myself, but the reason I like to see the movies I like make money, and I should specify that I mean the bigger-budget films like Grindhouse or Speed Racer, is 'cause success at the box office would mean a bigger push for movies of that ilk... like Grindhouse is a good example, 'cause I'm guessing that even those who didn't particularly enjoy the final project, I think everyone dug the idea, and had Grindhouse made a lot of money we'd probably be seeing a bunch of double-features from a slew of genre directors. As it stands, we'll have to settle for Italian Spider-man...


Indeed.

As for Speed Racer, I don't know what making more money would've led to: more cheesy anime adaptations? We seem to be getting a bunch of those over the next few years... a Speed Racer sequel? Well, we all know the Wachowski track record when it comes to sequels...


Ooh...

...I'm actually a fan of Reloaded and Revolutions. I think they're misunderstood masterpieces, but since they are seen as sequels to an already popular film, people will keep on saying "I want that movie!" instead of opening up to the offerings of the second two. So there's a chance they may never really be appreciated.

That said, I don't think a Speed Racer 2 would make the same impression as Reloaded and Revolutions since Speed Racer is pretty straight forward. Unlike The Matrix, it doesn't lend itself to the "problem" of increased complexity.

Speed Racer will always be Speed Racer. And it's already perfect material for serialisation since the source material is itself a series.
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Re: SPEED RACER

Postby Spandau Belly on Wed Jun 11, 2008 2:30 pm

Look, I'm not trying to be rude here, but would you guys honestly want a Speed Racer 2?

I mean, I enjoyed Speed Racer. But I think they milked everything they could out of this world and setup. What could a sequel offer? Even more ridiculous races? Even wackier chimp antics? Even more brightly colored settings? I think I'd go blind.

However I wouldn't mind more movies looking and feeling like this because I think it captured the dinkyness of cartoons perfectly the same way that Rodriguez did with Sin City captured the ultra-noirist feel of Miller's comic books. I would look forward to more anime adaptations like Speed Racer, but not a sequel.

Earlier I suggested a Sailor Moon film, I think it would be pretty easy to do. Everybody likes movies about crime fighting hotties with killer bodies and I'm sure you could get a good cast of likeable and attractive young actresses to fill the parts.

I don't know a lot about anime, but as far as I know they haven't done a live action Pokemon or Dragonball film. I can't think of any other big series. Maybe this Cowboy Bebop thing that my buddy Travis is always talking about.
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