Archive for the ‘Movies’ Category

I happened to be in Korea in 1997 when Star Wars: A New Hope Special Edition was released. This is a handout I got from the theater when I went to see it. Just in case you’re wondering, the film was in English with Korean subtitles. 


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Star Wars Novelization

Posted: 28 February 2017 in Information, Movies, Retro

I ran across this pre-movie release novelization of Star Wars (note back cover “Soon to be a spectacular motion picture…”, the understatement of the year). December 1976, five months before Star Wars was released. I wonder how many people read the book before seeing the movie. 

I love the artwork on the front, obviously not how Vader appeared in the movie. I think he looks more sinister here. 

Ninja Fight – 1985

Posted: 23 September 2014 in Arts, Movies, Music, Personal History, Retro

When I was in high school, one of my dreams was to become a film maker. I had made some stop-motion animation tests in Eighth Grade, mostly with a black-and-white video camera and Betamax machine but also some 8mm film (which never got developed). I’m not sure if the videotapes still exist or not, but I did find one tape a few years back that contained a martial arts (ninja) movie I made in high school circa 1985. The tape had deteriorated so bad that it was barely salvagable. The in-camera edits caused many dropouts and glitches because the Beta VCR we used didn’t have a flying erase head.

I edited it a bit with some sound effects and slow motion just to play around with iMovie and get it down to a tolerable length. I also added the original soundtrack (also salvaged from an old audio tape) back in since the copy I had was an older edit. No amount of editing or digital restoration can help the content though.

Anyway, here it is…

The Frame – Jamin Winans

Posted: 23 September 2014 in Arts, Movies, News

Just watched the trailer for “The Frame”, an upcoming movie by Jamin Winans. It’s hard to tell much about the movie from the trailer, but if this movie is anything like Winans’ previous films, then it will certainly be worth seeing.

Jamin Winans is known for the movie “Ink”, which is one of my favorite movies of all time. The only reason I don’t rank it number one is because that spot is reserved for “Star Wars”. I first saw Star Wars (now Episode IV) during its premiere run in 1977 when I was in Fourth Grade. No matter how much critics berate it or how bad it really is, I’ll always remember it through a Fourth Grader’s eyes and the excitement I had watching it again and again.

But “Ink” is far better in terms of storytelling, an intellectual movie for the adult mind. The music and cinematography are also wonderful. What’s sad is that no major movie studio would pick up Ink (opting for lower quality crap IMO), so Jamin Winans and his wife, Kiowa, distributed it on DVD, Blu-Ray, and online themselves. Ink’s popularity is due in part to its release onto Torrent sites. Here’s what the Winans had to say about it:

Dear Fans and Friends,

Over the weekend something pretty extraordinary happened. Ink got ripped off. Someone bit torrented the movie (we knew this would happen) and they posted it on every pirate site out there. What we didn’t expect was that within 24 hours Ink would blow up. Ink became the number 1 most downloaded movie on several sites having been downloaded somewhere between 150,000 to 200,000 times as far as we can tell. Knowing there’s absolutely nothing we can do about it, we’ve embraced the piracy and are just happy Ink is getting unprecedented exposure.

As a result, Ink is now ranked #16 on IMDb’s movie meter and is currently one of the top 20 most popular movies in the world.

This all started as a result of the completely underground buzz that you’ve each helped us create. We’ve had no distributor, no real advertising and yet the word of mouth that you’ve generated has made the film blow up as soon as it became available worldwide. So many of you came to see the movie multiple times, bringing friends and family and many of you have bought the DVD and Blu-ray from us. All of this built up and built up and suddenly it exploded.

We don’t know exactly where this will all lead, but the exposure is unquestionably a positive thing.

Ink hits Netflix, Blockbuster, iTunes and many more tomorrow! Remember to get your signed copies, t-shirts and posters at the Ink Store.

Thank you so much for the constant love and support.

Jamin and Kiowa
Double Edge Films

Here is the full story.

Here’s the trailer for Ink:

Winans has also made numerous shorts, including “Uncle Jack”, which is my favorite from him.

Retro, Retro – Metropolis

Posted: 21 September 2014 in Information, Movies, Music, Retro

Just finished watching the 1984 Giorgio Moroder version of Fritz Lang’s 1927 futuristic dystopian classic “Metropolis”.  I had seen the original years ago, but never the 1984 Moroder version.  I have to admit, I quite enjoyed the 80s soundtrack – a double dose of retro – though the version was panned by many critics.  I’ve always enjoyed Moroder’s work, especially his movie soundtracks — Scarface, Midnight Express, Electric Dreams, Flashdance, Top Gun, just to name a few.

Many scenes from the original were lost over time, but have been rediscovered.  Moroder’s version from 1984 did an admirable job of reconstructing the film from what was available, but was still very incomplete.  According to Wikipedia the run times are:  153 minutes (1927 premiere, lost); 82 minutes (1984 restoration); 118 minutes (2002 restoration); and 148 minutes (2010 restoration).  The 2010 restoration is the most complete to date after a 16mm negative was discovered in Argentina containing footage previously thought lost forever.