Late to the party, as usual….

When I saw it in the theater, I enjoyed Guardians of the Galaxy.  Not as much as I did The Avengers or The Winter Soldier.  But I did enjoy it.

However, on further consideration, I’ve decided that I like it the best of all the Marvel movies so far.  In no small part, that’s because of this:5566c1ff1587114e61bbb250834021c611ba3192

This is literally the music of my childhood. (That makes me feel a bit old, since it was supposedly the childhood music of Peter Quill’s mother.)  And hearing it during the movie forged an instant connection for me.

But unlike the other Marvel movies, these characters are goofballs. (There’s a scene where Quill calls them ‘losers’, but he doesn’t mean that in the sense that they’re bad people. Rather he points out that they’re all people who’ve lost.)  There’s a lot more humor in this movie than the others. On rewatching the movie, I spend a greal deal more time laughing than I do when watching the others.

And of course, there’s the Dance Off: 

The last time I watched this movie, they got to that part, and I absolutely wanted to see Lee Pace dance. ;o)

All that is to say that humor goes a long way.

The Value of Cliché…

As I’ve been recovering from a surgery, I’ve spent a lot of time watching TV lately, and I’ve been thinking a lot about clichés and writing.  Among other things, I watched several of the Marvel movies, and I found myself getting irritated with one thing: people falling off of buildings into moving aircraft.

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(Loki does this in The Avengers, falling off the Stark Tower into a very conveniently passing alien flyer. I get that he’s a demigod, but seriously, he didn’t even look first to see if one was nearby. That was just TOO convenient for my tastes.)*

I want to say that the first time I saw that was in The Matrix, but I’m sure it was around before. Lately it seems that every action sequence in a movie has to include an instance where someone jumps/falls and lands atop an airplane or in a helicopter without ending up sucked into the jets or rotors.  (And without breaking any bones or even, apparently, getting the wind knocked out of them.)

This actually goes back even further, back to westerns with people jumping off a building onto a running horse. I always wondered how hard that was on the horse, although when we’re talking human/aircraft instead, I suspect the damage would go the other way.

So sometimes a cliché can be irritating.  I suspect this is a bit like a pet peeve…what works for one person drives another person nuts.

 

My counter example came when I watched the very last episode of Leverage…and ADORED it because it pretty much fed me every expected element that I wanted.

Remember that TV series you watched faithfully for years, but in the last three episodes they totally went off the rails?  Remember how annoyed you were? Remember the first time you watched Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon and didn’t ‘get’ the ending?

Yeah, they didn’t do any of that in Leverage. They gave me exactly what I’d been waiting for, and in a nice tidy package. Just enough epilogue to satisfy me.  They fed me clichés and I LOVED IT!

 

So somewhere in the balance of all that is the secret of cliché. You have to hit the reader/viewer in exactly the right spot to make them happy (and some people will react differently than other people to the same image.)

#SFWAPro

 

*Yes, I’m aware that this is  stupid thing to single out in the Marvel universe as ‘questionable.’

 

 

 

 

 

 

Care and Feeding of the Debut Author + Thor

The book’s been out for a week now. We’ll just have to see how it fares.

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We went to see Thor yesterday, and I have to admit I wasn’t in a great moving watching mood.

Add to that my persistent wish that Chris Hemsworth would comb his hair (or cut it off), and I’m not the best person to judge this movie.

So it won’t appear in my ‘buy the DVD’ pile, I’m afraid. It was cute and better than the first one, but I just wasn’t sold on it. Also, I still find that I don’t like Jane too much.

On the other hand, if you’re going to see Tom Hiddleston or Kat Dennings, then you’ll be happy whenever they’re on the screen.

And now I’m considering what sort of movie it would make if it were just a straight-up Loki and Darcy movie….hmmmmm…..

#SFWAPro