Venom Let There Be Carnage (2021)

I only know Venom from the 1994 Spider-Man cartoon even though I read a lot of Marvel comics, Spiderman was never in my favourites to read. I was an X-men girl. And I need to admit I only wanted to see the sequel because of this little scene in the trailer. Ketchup?!


But before I could watch the sequel I needed to watch the first movie which aired in 2018. Disney+, Prime or Dutch Netflix didn’t have it on their streams so I had to rent it through Google for €3,99. I wasn’t going fork over €10,99, no love for Venom from me haha.

Venom (2018)
Basically Venom is a symbiotic lifeform for outerspace brought to Earth by environmentalist Jeff Bezos who thinks it’s okay to find a host for these aliens by experimenting on homeless people and anyone else that doesn’t agree with his plans, in order to be able to survive in space. It is mentioned that he is scouting for space real-estate (the same guy that gives a speech that humans are destroying the Earth).

Our misfit investigative journalist Eddie Brock has beef with this guy and with the help of a rogue scientist breaks into the lab to collect evidence to bring the evil hipster down. When collecting the evidence, Eddie accidentally infects himself with one of the symbionts and all hell breaks lose. The parasite makes himself known to his host as Venom and is very hungry. After biting a guy’s head off it is known that Venom can only live on life food, especially brains. Hipster Bezos also gets infected by an symbiont and they duke out on a launching platform because the Bezos symbiont wants to go into space to retrieve his buddies so they can feast on Earth. Eddie and Venom put a stop to it by blowing up the rocket as fire and high frequencies are the only things that can hurt them. Everyone is safe, Venom is only allowed to eat bad guys and there was much rejoicing. The End.

The first movie was entertaining but not great. Venom and Eddie interactions are funny. Eddy’s fiancée got over him too quickly when his actions made her lose her job. And hipster Bezos was heavily overacting, it didn’t feel natural at all. I won’t blame the actor as the director is the one that okays a performance. So saving grace of this movie was Tom Hardy as Eddie Brock. And it also introduces us the bad guy of the second movie, Cletus Kasady played by Woody Harrelson.

Best Buds

Venom Let There Be Carnage (2021)
Eddie’s relationship with Venom is complicated. Biting of heads of baddies does attract police attention because you can’t play your own judge so Venom is condemned to eating chickes or chocolate because eating humans is bad.

Serial killer Cletus Kasady wants Eddie to tell his story but Venom observes frantic carvings in Cletus’ cell and together they discover the location of his victims landing Cletus a one way ticket to Hell aka death penalty. Cletus is mad that he is misunderstood because people did him wrong and demands that he talks to Eddie one last time before execution. The talk goes wrong when Cletus insults Eddie’s ex-fiancée and they end up fighting. Cletus then bites Eddie and somehow ingests a newly born symbiont named Carnage. The execution is botched and Cletus/Carnage bust out of prison to get revenge. Now Eddie and Venom need to work together to stop this nutcase.

Again the movie was okayish, I liked the Venom/Eddie escapades with Venom being a bit of a whiney bish and Eddie trying to keep it together with his maneating amoeba. I really like Sonny and Cher, Venom’s pets. So Tom hardy gets another thumbs up from me.

Now the downpart of the movie. I think Woody Harrelson is a good actor when you look at True Detective, Zombieland and Now You See Me but when he plays a psycho he is downright cringy. I DID NOT LIKE Natural Born Killers at all and he went for Natural Born Killers 2.0 for this movie. I mean Cletus’ had a fucked up youth with abuse but what’s with the trope that then he becomes this sadistic serial killer. Serial killers are more complex then boohoo I was abused by daddy now I am going to murder people.

I would still recommend this movie because besides the cringe it has entertainment value. Tom Hardy portrayed Eddie in a different light then the cartoon Eddie Brock ( I hated that ass) and you can’t help but feel sorry for the characters’ terrible luck. Please stay seated for the end-credits because it has an awesome reveal showing that this won’t be the last we see of Venom and Eddie.

My rating:

Dune (2021 part 1)

When the first trailer dropped my heart raced, finally another Dune movie. I loved the books but I must admit I haven’t seen the 1984 film adaptation by David Lynch at all. I was only 4 years old when it was released and it just disappeared from my view in the years to come.

When I was 18 years old I had to read a couple of English books for my English finals and the teacher gave us the chance to deviate of the list but only if he okay’ed your choice. I said to him that I was going to read Frank Herbert’s Dune, he told me one book would be enough for the oral exam. The oral exam had two parts, a book discussion and a presentation about something you like. I chose American Comics and we ended up nerding the complete 30 minutes and I was given an A.

What I liked about Dune was that it was heavily influenced by Arab and Islamic culture. The language contained similarities with the Arabic language and the Fremens nomadic culture fitted the exact same culture. I always feel a bit connected with Islamic culture as my great-grandmother was Muslim and she gave her grandchildren Muslim wisdoms that were then passed on to me like ‘Speak good to people’.

So I understand the disappointed of people when they discovered the chosen cast not representing any Arab or Islamic actors. Hollywood still tends to go for big names even in 2021. And a big name cast it is: Timothée Chalamet, Rebecca Ferguson, Oscar Isaac, Josh Brolin, Stellan Skarsgård, Dave Bautista, Stephen McKinley Henderson, Zendaya, David Dastmalchian, Chang Chen, Sharon Duncan-Brewster, Charlotte Rampling, Jason Momoa, and Javier Bardem. To my shame I couldn’t remember seeing Timothée in Interstellar so for me he was a bit of an unknown actor XD. But yea, for the Fremen, there are quite a few Arab/Islamic actors they sidelined here. I’m thinking about Ali Suliman, Mena Massoud or Alia Shawkat.

Dune was a spectacle for the eyes filmed in stunning locations like Norway, Abu Dhabi, Jordan and Budapest. The music was perfect, the special effects very impressive and the movie was well paced and didn’t feel at all 155 minutes. A good balance between action and suspense. I was really curious how they would implement the body shields and it was just thumbs up from me all the way. I needed a bit more sand worms, the Shai Hulud. I was on the edge of my seat when they whipped out the hooks to ride the worms, we even saw a rider at the end of the movie so I think I will get fan-girl’s satisfaction worth in Dune part 2.

I’m not going to spoil too much on the story but the premise of Dune goes as follows. In the far future Duke Leto Atreides accepts to become steward of the desert planet Arrakis in order to source the most valuable substance in the universe called spice. The drug extends human life, provides superhuman levels of thought and makes faster-than-light travel practical. Leto knows this is a trap set up by his enemies but still takes his concubine Jessica and his heir Paul, together with his trusted advisors to the planet. The spice mining is complicated by the presence of the Shai Hulud, giant sandworms. After House Atreides is betrayed Paul has to flee together with his mother to the desert and seek refuge with the Fremen. Whispers are that Paul is Muad’Dib, the Fremen messiah.

Paul Atreides

After seeing this movie I have the mood to pick up the books again and wait for part 2 to hit the theaters.

My rating:


It was pure chance that I stumbled upon a copy of this movie at my local library. I think it might be the only anime they have on rent there, which is a shame, but I haven’t fully scanned the shelves yet. My hometown maybe to small for a big fan base of anime, maybe the library in Amsterdam or Rotterdam have a bigger selection. I would love to see more anime gems in my local library. Disney isn’t the only animation storyteller.

I consume my anime either through my own purchases or through my subscription with Crunchyroll and Netflix. A lot of people are against the paid services of the likes of Crunchyroll and Funimation and turn to pirating anime and manga. But if you don’t buy the tradpaperbacks or DVD’s/Blurays, the artists get absolutely nothing.

Japanese animators are heavily underpaid and overworkered by the studios. This is a major problem and the culture needs to change. I think the studio owners should receive criticism from fans in order to improve the circumstances of their employees. So please don’t pirate your favourite show, instead support projects like the Animator Dormitory Channel in order to change the anime industry.

Mirai is a 2018 adventure fantasy film written and directed by Mamoru Hosoda and produced by Studio Chizu. We know Hosoda from his movies; Wolf Children, Summer Wars and the Girl Who Lept Through Time.

The story focuses around Kun, a four-year old boy, and his parents. His father, an architect, designed their house around a tree in Yokohama and he spend his days playing with his trains and the family dog Yukko. When his sister, Mirai, is born the attention shifts towards the newborn baby which turns his happiness for a sister into jealousy. He throws tantrums and when his mother returns to work and his father becomes a stay-at-home dad, he starts to feel utterly alone.

Being a dad is not easy

After a tantrum he stomps off to the garden and notices the tree emitting a strange glow. He then meets a mysterious man that tells Kun he is a prince and he should bow to him. The man then accuses Kun of changing everything when he was born, revealing to be the personification of Yukko, the family dog.

The movie switches back and forth between reality and the fantasy futures and pasts. Kun meets several people contected to his family’s history and his own future while he comes to terms with not being the only child in the family.

I joked to myself that the movie had a Wolf Children kind of atmosphere as I hadn’t checked the director’s name yet. It is safe to say that Hosoda gives you this familiar feeling with his movies. The movie isn’t heavily action paced, one of the criticisms I read online and comes out as a very calm movie about a boy whom has to deal with changes. I can’t say that his journeys to the past, where he meets his mother as a child and his great-grandfather, are a projections of his imagination after hearing his mother tell the stories. I’d like to think that this conclusion of mine is somewhat close to the explanation.

I really loved seeing how he interacted with people he met in the different timelines. His great-grandfather waking up as the sole survivor when his ship was bombed during the war hit home with me as my own grandfather experienced the same thing. Seeing the destruction and carnage around him had a traumatizing effect on him.

When Kun found out that his mother was also severly punished as a child because she was naughty, he saw his mother’s sermon, after hitting his baby sister in the head with a train, in a different light.

Receiving advice of his great-grandfather

There were a few things that didn’t sit right with me in this movie. Kun’s voice-actor is way too old. When I looked up who had voice him, it was Moke Kamishiraishi, she is pretty new one the market for voice acting. The voice still struck me as familiar and it appears she is the younger sister of Mone Kamishiraishi, a very well known voice actress. She stars in hit movies; Your Name and Weathering With You. They have the same intonation lingering in their voice.

The other thing was the fact that a working mom was a big thing in the movie. It almost felt like the writer didn’t really agree with it. And the fact that the dad flat out rejected the idea he was a stay-at-home dad when being asked by the neighbourhood moms. He put more emphasis on working from home than taking care of the kids.
Being a working mom in Japan isn’t very common, it appears that if they want to return to work after a pregnancy it is often discouraged by family and employers. Seeing the roles reversed a bit was nice, Kun’s mother kept grilling his father for not having time when Kun was born. She didn’t call him a terrible father, but he also wasn’t a great one.

My rating:

Hot Toys – The Mandalorian

Besides BDJ’s and other dolls I own a few Hot Toys action figures. These are a bit more expensive then your regular action figures but way more detailed. But really they are toys for grown ups: 1. because of the hefty price tag and 2. because they are very fragile.

When the Mandalorian was announced I was a bit skeptical about it. I didn’t really like Boba Fett and never saw the other prequel movies besides the Phantom Menance. I know, I know, how can you call yourself a Star Wars fan if you didn’t watch the prequels. I read a lot of books on Star Wars to fill in the Star Wars canon, same with the comics. I think Darth Vader has cool moves and all but Anakin Skywalker is an annoying emo-teen/grown up. But George Lucas is to blame for the acting in the movies not the actor. I am really happy that they had John Favreau as director of the Mandalorian.

Mando’s preorder came up on the website of Gator, which also has a physical store in Nijmegen, so no import fees for me YAY! The release date was set around November 2020 but due to the pandemic I noticed that a lot of merchandise production had a lot of delays. Very understandable because the workers need to be able to work safely. But a week ago I finally received my shipping notice.

What I love about Hot Toys Sixth scale figures is the work that they put in these figures. It has little holster with a strap for his blaster, his rifle has a strap, the cape looks and feels like weathered fabric and you can attach sensors and explosives to his belt. My other Hot Toys are Captain America and Deadpool, so Mando will be a bit out of place XD.

Boxed Art
Tightly packed
His rifle is one of my favourite weapons
Close up with more details

Can’t remove his helmet, so no Pedro Pascal underneath but that’s fine. I was a bit worried when I had to stick the spikes in the base. They are very snug fit and I was afraid I would break them when using too much force. Luckily for this my SO has a delicate hand. All in all I am really happy with this figure. I plan to do a future photoshoot with all his poses and photoshop a Star Wars worthy background in. That will happen when I finally find my adapter for my DSLR camera. I misplaced it a few months ago and been making photos with my mobile instead.

Knives Out

It’s a shame I didn’t see this movie when it was out in the theaters. I can’t remember why as I am a big fan of Agatha Christie’s Poirot and the murder mystery genre. I’ll just throw it with being busy with video games ;).

This movie has quite a few big names like Christopher Plummer, Jamie Lee Curtis, Daniel Craig, Chris Evans, Frank Oz and Don Johnson. Written, produced and directed by Rian Johnson known from Looper and Star Wars: the Last Jedi.

Mystery novelist Harlan Thrombey invites his family to his 85st birthday. The next day the housekeeper finds him dead with his throat slit. The police believes it’s suicide but a private detective is hired by an anonymous party as there is a suspicion for murder.

It’s the old Who dun it premise that made Poirot so much fun to watch as most of the people involved all had a pretty good motive to commit the murder. What I find awesome is that the detective in Knives out is called Benoit Blanc a reference to Hercule Poirot a fictional character created by Agatha Christie.

Almost all the people present on the day of his birthday had something to gain with the demise of Harlan Thrombey except his nurse and the family are in for a shock when the content of his will is revealed.

The movie was awesome and it’s such a shame I didn’t see it on the big screen. I’m hoping the remake of Murder on the Orient Express is just as good.

Jojo Rabbit

The movie was released in 2019 in other parts of the world but we had to wait until 2020 for a Dutch release. Luckily for me not a lot of spoilers on Twitter for this movie compared to The Rise of the Skywalker, looking at you fanboys. I was hooked when I saw the trailer, being a fan of Taika Waititi’s work since the release of ‘What We do In the Shadows’. The best way to treat Hitler’s legacy is to put it to shits with a dose of satire.

The movie follows Jojo, a boy who joins the Hitler Jugend in order to become a man and who often has conversations with his imaginary friend: Hitler. Mind you, he is 10 years old so they way Hitler interacts with him is portrayed kind of childish.
His initiation with the Hitler Jugend is during a camp led by Captain Klenzendorf, a washed up officer who was removed from the front because he has only one good eye left. The older members of the Hitler Jugend see that Jojo is a bit cowardish during the training exercises and force him to kill a rabbit with his bare hands. When Jojo fails to do this he is nicknamed Jojo Rabbit, the cowardly boy. In a last act of desperation to show everyone he is brave, Jojo steals a hand grenade of the captain during a training exersice and throws it with all his might. Sadly the grenade bounces off a tree and lands right next to him, sending Jojo to the hospital.

After rehabilitation Jojo is left in the care with Captain Klenzendorf to do menial jobs to support the Reich by collecting metal, posting draft letters and distributing posters to keep morale up for the citizens. His mother doesn’t want Jojo to be inspired by the nazi’s and keeps her hopes up for the end of the war, with the Germans losing. One day Jojo comes home before his mother and hears a noise upstairs. Hidden behind the walls he finds a Jewish girl, who has been allowed to life there by his mother. Torn between his loyality to the Reich and his love for his mother, Jojo is confronted with his image of the world and the choices he has to make.

While the movie is portrayed as a satire, the harsh reality of the ruthlessness of the nazi’s was also shown, with the execution of traitors of the Party. Jojo keeps thinking he is a nazi, while actually he is just a boy whose head been filled with propaganda.

After my boyfriend pointed it out, I have to admit he is right about this, all the funny bits of the movie were all in the trailer which was a bit of a shame. But a real shout out to Scarlett Johansson and Sam Rockwell’s characters. Scarlett Jo showed the real shine I have been missing since ‘Lost in Translation’. She really portrayed the loving mother and kept her son in the dark of the dangerous work she did.
Sam Rockwell as Captain Klezendorff was a very surprising roll, he already knew the war was ending in a loss and struggling with his own feelings as a gay person. Just keeping up appearances and playing an important role saving Jojo’s life.

Keep Your Hands Off Eizouken! – Ep.1 The Greatest World!

After being on anime hiatus for a couple of years, I am slowly getting back in to the flow of watching it again. I got myself a Crunchyroll subscription and started binge watching series again. And sometimes you find something new like Keep Your hands Off Eizouken which was released on the 5th of January. So that’s fresh off the boat.

In 2016 the manga was released by Sumito Ōwara and finally came to life as an anime in 2020. A live-action adaption will be released in the third quarter of 2020 in Japan. The story follows three high school girls as they pursue their dream to create their own anime.

One of the main girls of the series is Midori Asakusa who has been hooked on anime since a very young age and is intrigued with how it’s made. Upon entering high school her love for anime has turned into an obsession in creating concept art and turning her school into a stage for her anime. She is hesitant to join the school’s anime club as she is bad with dealing with crowds, but her friend Sayaka Kanamori convinces her to go to the screening.

At the screening they encounter a girl who is being chased by Men In Black. She takes Asakusa’s hat as a disguise, but her pursuers see through it and give chase. Kanamori recognises the girl as the famous model Tsubame Mizusaki and the two girls see it as their duty to save the damsel in distress.
Mizusaki is eventually cornered by one of the Men In Black, men who have been hired by her parents to keep her from joining the anime club. Asakusa uses the stage trap door to detain the MIB and the three girls make their escape.

Mizusaki and Asakusa find out that they share the same passion of creating an anime, with Mizusaki designing the characters and Asakusa giving them a background. Kanamori is interested as she smells the money they can make of it. Together they will create their adventure.

I was scrolling through the new releases on Crunchyroll when this anime caught my eye. The opening theme has a catchy weird tune that I like and the style of drawing is refreshing. I completely get Asakusa & Mizusaki’s way of fan-girling over anime and both characters are very passionate about their dreams. Always good to follow your dreams. And then you have Kanamori in contrast, she is totally not interested in the visual concept of anime, only in the monetary value of it. She’s almost like a producer that sees the monatary value of a good serialisation.
An interesting premise was build for the first episode and I have to admit I am hooked for more. Sadly that means I have to wait another week for a new release 😉

The Mandalorian – season 1

The Mandalorian
The Mandalorian

I have to admit that I initially took out a Disney+ subscription solely for the Mandalorian, but the channel started to grow on me as I could see the movies again I have forgotten about.

This series was inspired by the canon character Boba Fett and his background as a Mandalorian. The term Mandalorian isn’t mentioned in the main movies but it did spin off in the franchise to huge popularity. Which ultimately led to the making of the series developed by Jon Favreau, the guy some of you know as Happy Hogan in the Marvel franchise. Each episode was directed by a different director like Bryce Dallas Howard, Deborah Chow and Taika Waititi. The first season has eight episodes.

We are introduced to the Mandalorian who earns his keep as a bounty hunter bringing in targets for the Guild. His latest target is a mark which has been active for 50 years and many bounty hunters have perished trying to acquire it. The client is an Imperial in hiding who really wants this asset in his grasp. After dispatching the heavily armed guards of the hiding place of the mark, Mando is confronted by the The Child. This Child is called baby Yoda by many online, because he shares the same race as Yoda.

Mando struggles to deliver the Child to his client, who clearly want to vivisect the kid. Because of this he busts him out with guns blazing aided by his fellow Mandalorians whom have been in hiding for a long time. During his travels fleeing from the Guild and Imps (Imperials) Mando meets people who either help him or try to take the Child to the Guild as per contract. In the end he knows he can’t keep running until he eliminates the ones who keep hunting him across the galaxy. The 7th and 8th episode show us the lengths the Imps want to go to acquire this child. Mando ends up as a clan of Two and he either has to find the Child’s family or train him when he comes of age. This Is The Way.

When I am really honest, I am not a big fan of Boba Fett. I came to love Star Wars because of Darth Vader and the droids. But the announcement of the series had me stoked, because I do love a good background story.

When watching it I got the space western feeling, with Mando being the lone gunslinger torn between loyalty and doing the right thing. I mean who would honestly let those Imp meanies hurt the little green cutie. Pedro Pascal is a great fit with his deep voice for Mando, giving him a lot of character which is quite difficult in this role as we don’t see his face until the last episode of the season. So he almost voice-acting the whole series. Bringing in Gina Carano as a Rebel Shock Trooper was a great addition to the cast. She adds a strong female character as balance to Mando’s and overall testosterone filled action. Another good female role is the Mandalorians Armorer, doesn’t have much screen time but fill an important role as the keeper of the Mandalorians Creed.
IG-11 was an unexpected surprise for me as a humorous sidekick voiced by Taika Waititi. The droid provides an interesting arc for Mando, who distrusts droids, but ends up respecting and trusting the droid for what they have been through.

The planets seen in the series give off a desolate, remote feeling. As if the people were living out their lives at the edge of the galaxy. The atmosphere is gritty, with music giving us this westerny feeling. Just like the westerns which take place outside the large cities in the rural communities, these are the rural planets of the galaxy. Hope always seems far away in these places, our gunslinger is bringing hope and a little bit of change where otherwise would have been none. Because of this he is collecting like minded beings forming a gang which accumulates in larger changes as the season progresses.

I have to wait until Fall 2020 for the second season of this cool new story inspired by Star Wars. It seems far away but it will be fall before you know it.