Open Thread for May 14, 2010

The Cannes Film Festival, Frank Frazetta and the week ending May 14th.

Three … two … one … make Open Thread go now!

First off, the Cannes Film Festival opened on Wednesday. Director Tim Burton headlines the jury. Films shown here include the new Robin Hood (with Russell Crowe), Fair Game (adapted from Valerie Plame’s book), Biutiful by Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu; Outrage by Takeshi Kitano; Tamara Drewe by Stephen Frears; and Aurora by Cristi Puiu. Oliver Stone’s sequel to Wall Street, titled Wall Street: Money Never Sleeps, is screening but not entered for competition. When reached for comment, Stone produced a montage of American Indians and atomic explosions.

Question: any movies at Cannes this year that you’d actually like to watch? Like, in a theater? (I have a few, but I’ll let y’all go first)


How about I produce a gothic remake of the 63rd Cannes Film Festival in twenty years, huh, Burton? How would you like THAT? Huh?

Second, geeks the world over mourned the passing of artist Frank Frazetta earlier this week. It’s easy to dismiss his paintings as fan service – maidens in revealing gowns clinging to the rippling thighs of shirtless warriors. But Frazetta’s work transformed the genre of fantasy art so thoroughly it’s hard to imagine what it was like before. Plus, at least his paintings were evocative. At least when you picked up a flimsy paperback with a Frank Frazetta cover you knew what you were in for. No pale hands holding apples for this guy.

Question: Frank Frazetta’s painting a picture to go on the cover of a pulp novel detailing your life’s adventures. One, what does he depict you doing? Two, what is the title of that novel?


While this picture will never be in a museum, that also means no one will spend twenty minutes staring at it asking: What does it MEAN?

Do you want to see some iron-thewed barbarian lay waste to the Palme d’Or Jury? Or is there something we missed? Sound off in the comments, for this is your … Open Thread.

11 Comments on “Open Thread for May 14, 2010”

  1. RiderIon #

    I don’t have any idea what any of those movies are about with the exception of the Wall Street sequel. I’m not even sure wikipedia could shed any light on the films beyond a cast list and a genre at this point seeing as most of them haven’t been screened yet.

    The big news in my circle of nerdom was tthe purchase of the Power Rangers brand and episode catalogue from Disney by Saban Brands. Saban Brands also has a contract for 20 new episodes and reruns of old episodes (all 700 of them) with Nickelodeon. Fans are rejoicing because of the mismanagement of the brand under Disney’s ownership but I’m awaiting to see what Haim Saban has in store as he’s got essentially a year and a half of Super Sentai footage from 2 different series to work with.


  2. Gab #

    @RiderIon: Would you go into more detail about this? I had no idea that much was going on with Power Rangers. I grew up on that show, so I’m interested to hear this, and from someone holding it dear, to boot. (Or if not, at least point me in the direction of some good sources, please?)

    1. I’m (supposedly) seeing _Robin Hood_ tonight, so there’s that. I’d like to see _Countdown to Zero_, a documentary about nuclear disarmament. Other than that, I’m not familiar with anything else on the list (I knew about the Stone movie, but that’s it and, sorry, am not very interested in it). Ahem, sorry, guess I’m not so artsy-fartsy.

    2.Well, I can admit he did a lot for fantasy art and can appreciate him for that, but I was never a fan of his work when I was little because I thought his characters looked too greasy, and then nor when I grew older because of how objectifying it is of both the men *and* women being depicted. I suppose the ones of dudes in cloaks on horses are fine, but as soon as there’s skin involved, I get kind of blegh.

    So a book telling my life story, its picture, and its title… This is very, very introspective, and the next question is, do I take it seriously, or make a joke of it?

    Serious: Given the transitory place I’m in right now, I’d say me in a big, flowy, wizard/warlock-looking cloak, atop a mountain of soiled diapers and tissues, wielding the contract I signed for a fellowship I’ll be using soon, and using said contract as my conductor/implement as it shoots a spell (how about Magic Missile? Eldritch Blast?) into a demonic-looking clown with glasses and a very ridiculous bow-tie. Title? _Natural Studies_.

    Not-so-serious: Me slicing the head off of that same clown, but wearing the typical bikini thing from Frazetta, and using… a spork. Title? _Get The Joke_ (and on the bottom, it would say, “… or DIE”)


  3. Timothy J Swann #

    Robin Hood, at least according to the BBC interview with Russell Crowe, sounds very political – concerning the relative popularity of Richard I/John, the rights of man as expressed in the Forest Charter (which is probably part of our Great British unwritten constitution – the companion piece the Magna Carta certainly is) and Robin Hood as the provocative agent, scarred by war in the Middle East who provokes that.

    Of course, it may be that the film will only have such nuances as watched by an Overthinker. The good news is is that that makes Russell Crowe one of us.


  4. RiderIon #

    I originally saw the news story on but I have since seen it on a few other media sources. I’d copy and paste you a link but my Smartphone is not that fancy (Curse you, LG!). I can do so when I am off work in a few others if you still desire it.

    The specifics of the deal are that Saban Brands (a new investment group headed by Haim Saban) purchased the name, trademarks and the episode catalogue of all the old and current Power Rangers media (Mighty Morphin’ through R.P.M.). It’s also assumed that similiar to Disney’s (and Saban’s prior) contract with Toei to use previous props, costuming and footage from Toei’s Super Sentai series is included in this deal. Bandai of America would continue to produce the toyline. It’s speculated that Disney was paid somewhere in the 9 figures range for the entire property.

    After acquiring all the above, Saban Brands reached a deal with Viacom to air Power Rangers on Nickelodeon. Nickelodeon also ordered 20 new episodes of Power Rangers that will begin airing in early 2011. This deal also speculated to include rebroadcast/syndication rights for the prior Power Rangers series. It’s also not known if the series would air on Nickeldeon or its sister network NickToons.

    It’s also not known if Saban will utilize footage from Samurai Sentai Shinkenger (2009’s Super Sentai series) or from Tensou Sentai Goseiger (2010’s Super Sentai series) for the 20 episodes Nickelodeon has comissioned.

    Lastly, speculation is that now that Saban Brands also owns all the episodes there may be DVD releases of the old series in the near future. I am highly in favor of this but only time will tell.

    All right. I’m done being a nerd for now.


  5. 570n32-ge #

    Hi, Open Thread, I regret to be a p***k, but:

    I think FlashForward is going to face a crucial moment at the season finale, where it will become something worth serious watching, or just a big smoking pile of WTF that it has been acussed of being. What would keep it afloat better?
    Actually I feel pretty confident of just stating what is obvious.

    Is this a fork on its road perhaps?

    I think there’s something here worth of watching develop, even if it goes south, or sour.
    Not because of its execution (Will it sound caustic to some if I say it has a certain aura of underdevelopment and clumsyness to it?), but perhaps despite of its many debatable flows.
    Something is building up.

    Why do i have this sensation that no one likes the main characters?, and if that is so, why does this happen?
    Aren’t some of them characters even pathetic at times?

    What seems to be the point of this series (other than ratings at which it seems to be failing)?
    Is there something here or is it just really a “huge pile of redundant” WTF?
    I think there is.


  6. 570n32-ge #

    In fact I believe what is so dislikable about this series is that, most likely, in order to be consecuent (consistent is perhaps what I mean, I’m English language challenged) IT SHOULD BE A TRAGEDY.




    No happy ending disneyfication here but a tragedy, and who wants to watch a tragedy; most Ladys and Gents want (and seemingly need) a melodramatic emotionally satisfying and manichean ending.
    Like Mills said: People don’t want a hero, they want to eat cheeseburgers, play the lotto and watch television. Eat cheeseburgers, play the lotto and watch television.

    But in all likelyhood I’m full of… something rhyming with “rite”, or maybe it’s just “meh”.
    Which brings to… …Guys… FlashForward?. Anyone?


  7. Gab #

    @RiderIon: NOOO, don’t stop being a nerd!! I’d totally go out and buy the original Power Rangers if it came out on DVD, for one thing. And it’s good to get the info- I was absolutely unaware any of those deals had been made until you brought them up.

    @570n32-ge: Well, it looks like things are going to have to end without any real conclusions, because _FlashForward_ has been cancelled. I found out a few hours ago. Sadly, I had predicted the final scene/shot of what WOULD have been the season finale to be everyone collapsing… But now, apparently, it will be a SERIES finale, since the announcement was just made yesterday. Alack, alas, I’m rather disappointed.

    I think you’re onto something, though. Perhaps people didn’t like it because *SO MUCH BAD STUFF HAPPENS* that it was kind of hard to watch. Unsettling, since there never seems to be a happy ending- even the “happy” moments always have a subtext making them rather depressing.


  8. Martin #

    Heroes is also canceled.

    Robin Hood started out as a hot spec script focusing on the Sheriff of Nottingham using medieval forensic techniques to track the identity of Robin Hood. Then it became… Robin Hood. It’s an interesting case study of how films (blockbusters mostly) are developed. Here’s a good write-up (second post down):


  9. S75 #

    Wll, at least Heroes got cancelled.


  10. Genesis Alexander #

    Tim Burton has a unique style when making his movie. I love Nightmare Before Christmas and Edward Scissorhands.,-:


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