Episode 3 – Cast to the Future

August 26, 2009

Cast to the Future

Cast to the Future

Episode 3; In which Messrs Christopher and Christopher ponder the merits of voice-over and Star Power, disagree completely over TWO films, talk more bollocks than usual and start a campaign of their preferred casting choice for this years most talked about cameo… welcome to CAST TO THE FUTURE!!!!

SPOILER: We promise that episodes 4 and 5 will not be called Cast to the Future II and Cast to the Future III…but we can’t promise that those title’s won’t come up eventually. Love.x


3D TV and the great consumer swindle!

August 15, 2009
A Completely Immerisve Experience, closer to reality than once thought?

A Completely Immerisve 3D Experience...closer to a reality than we once thought?

Dedicated Follower,

Mumbo jumbo aside, this Christopher certaintly has no overriding problem with 3D cinema.
As far as I’m concerned it can go about its merry business and make a nice tidy profit for itself so long as it doesn’t force itself upon me too much. There are certain films I am definitely willing to see in 3D (and pay that little bit extra for the pleasure) but for the most part I’ll be just fine with massive 2D screens and the occasional IMAX. If families and horror-nuts want to spend loads of dosh to see every new flick in their respective genres blasted towards their visor-covered faces then so be it, just don’t come running to me when you moan that besides all the flashy cool bits it was actually a pretty shit film and that maybe they should’ve hired one or two more writers than 3D engineers for production.
But moving on…
3DTV is a reality people, you read it here, erm, probably second, because I’ve heard it a few times now and I expect you have too. As I drove home on Wednesday from Mummy and Daddy’s house I flicked onto my current favourite radio stationTM and caught a swift promotion by one of the presenters talking about new gadgets. “3DTV is here!” he exclaimed, as I listened on in piqued interest. The advert continued…”why watch a film or a TV show in 2 dimensions when you can watch it in 3 and feel like you are really there?…watch your favourite football team play in 3D and experience the game as if you were in the stands next to them!” and so on, and so on.
But then came the kick to the windpipe: “You can only experience 3D television by buying a brand new ‘3DTV ready’ television, available from all good electrical stockists. Grab yours today!”
And that’s where I suddenly lost interest, and actually got pretty pissed off. I thought to myself, “Wait, hasn’t everybody just busted their arses getting themselves into crippling debt to buy ‘HD ready’ TVs and ‘HD ready’ Digiboxes and Blu-ray compatible recorders and players so they can have the Ultimate Home Theatre Experience? And now that they have all that stuff and are avoiding phone calls from credit card companies they sit down to watch Don’t Forget The Lyrics in all its full HD glory only to get to the first advert break, see Sky’s new teaser for ‘3DTV is coming soon..’ and then send Dad out to Comet to buy all the new gear they’re going to need in preparation for this new televisual Mecca, whilst Mum and the Kids throw the 40 inch flat screen and accessories on the fire where they belong?”
We’ve been duped!
And here’s an added perspective; We don’t even have HD at our house yet because we can’t bloody afford it! So now I’m wondering what’s the point in getting all the HD ready gear in if as soon as it’s set up I’ll just be told that what I really need is 3D blasting out in my living room?
That old addage of the computer being obsolete before you’ve got it out of the box is frighteningly prevalent here I think. Only from my perspective it feels even worse because I haven’t even got round to buying the computer yet!
And it’s very disheartening too. Check out this link; http://ces.cnet.com/8301-19167_1-10142957-100.html

‘But as the economy worsens, the forecast for the TV market is looking grim. The LCD TV market is only expected to grow about 17 percent in terms of units shipped in 2009, according to research firm DisplaySearch. This is down from growth of about 29 percent in 2008. Plasma TV growth is also expected to suffer with the market only expected to grow by about 5 percent in 2009 compared with a 24 percent rise in 2008, DisplaySearch said.

As a result, TV makers are looking for the next hot thing to attract new consumers. And some are hoping 3D TVs could be it. ‘ (from the above article)

I can appreciate taking a business perspective on this issue, and the idea that a market might need to be one step ahead of the consumer in order to sustain itself, but that makes for pretty grim reading from where I’m standing (because I like to read whilst I stand) when it doesn’t seem to show any consideration for the impact that encouraging people to keep spending MONEY THEY DON’T HAVE RIGHT NOW on new technological bullshit without analysing the effect that is going to have on the individual.

Yes I suppose the counter argument of “if you can’t afford it then have the strength not to buy it” may be relevant, but we have seen with our own eyes the effectiveness of mass marketing, peer pressure, brand power and a whole host of other techniques that companies employ to encourage sales, without any apparent care for who’s bank accounts they are draining in the process.

I know, I sound like a right old git, but I can’t help it.

Here’s something else that I have a problem with:

‘I checked out Panasonic’s home theater in 3D. I must admit, the experience was phenomenal. I felt like I was on the floor at the Olympics opening ceremonies in Beijing right alongside the hundreds of dancers and drummers. ‘ (from the same article)

Bullshit.

Statements like that really piss me off. When people talked about HD saying “it’s like you’re there man!” or you watch a 3D movie and hear folks saying “I thought I could’ve touched Bolt!”. Are you fucking kidding me? Back in the day when that geezer put 50 people in a room for the first time and showed them footage of a train coming towards them and they all bricked it- THAT WAS REAL REACTION!!! It had never happened before, cinema was new. The whole concept of sitting in a darkened room and watching something happen that wasn’t phsically in front of you was foreign.

But these days? If you can’t tell the difference between being courtside at a Basketball game and watching it on TV in your living room…WHILST WEARING 3D FUCKING GLASSES [“Panasonic’s Keisuke Suetsugi…said that it will be at least 10 years before the technology is advanced enough to provide a similarly robust 3D experience without glasses” QUOTE!!!]…then you have got problems, and maybe watching television should be lower down on your list of priorities.

Look, I’m down with technological advancement, and I appreciate consumerism and all the wonderfull benefits it has bestowed upon us, society. But doesn’t this all seem a little too fast, and a little too “all we care about is money and image?”. Shouldn’t we recieve these bountiful new technologies one at a time, and then actually take the time to benefit from them and appreciate them? I mean, DVD is on the outs after 10 years of market domination and even that doesn’t feel like time enough to have really taken stock of it. It feels like HD is already being cast aside before it’s had chance to really impress EVERYBODY (not just those that have had it for a while now because they could afford it). And it also makes Sky’s campaign of “HD, now it’s for everbody” completely degrading and offensive if you consider that the line could continue “it’s for everybody…because we don’t give a shit about it anymore as we’re already moving on. See you later suckers!!!!!”

This has been quite the rant. And I hope you don’t mind that.

Thanks for reading.

Peace.

Christopher (one half of Casta La Vista)


Episode 2 – Castablanca

August 12, 2009


Castablanca

CastaBlanca

Roll up! Roll up! The second episode of your favourite independent movie podcast type thing is available for download right here!

Featuring reviews of The Taking of Pelham 123, Antichrist and Looking for Eric, as well as a feature on 3D plus a whole lot more.

Check it!


Review – Ice Age: Dawn of the Dinosaurs

August 5, 2009

Ice age

It’s been a long time since I fell asleep at the cinema…

Not the most promising start to a review right? I could make excuses –  I’d had a heavy weekend drinking, I was tired and I wasn’t exactly going to see the film of my own accord – but even so, for a film to not be able to hold my attention (especially such a bright colourful one) for its duration is a chronic failure. Or un failure chronique.

I’m no slouch when it comes to animation – in fact I’m probably more of a child at heart than I should be. To argue the point that maybe I didn’t ‘get it’ or perhaps that ‘it wasn’t aimed for people like  me’ is naive to the border of ridiculous. You only need to listen to the dialogue to know that most of the wordplay is going to go right over the kid’s heads (which isn’t hard… they’re only small…) . So what’s left for them then? The slapstick? Yeah that got old pretty quickly too in my view, nothing we haven’t seen in either of the two previous films.

Complete waste of time then…? Well no, not exactly…

We all know that kids are stupid. That’s why they can’t use apostrophes or drive cars. But what we also all know is that kids aren’t stupid and are, in fact, very intelligent discerning cinema goers. They know what they like and they know if a film is shit.

Ice Age: Dawn of the Dinosaurs is thus obviously not shit.

I went along with my five year old cousin, who insisted we saw it in 2D (after a particularly harrowing visit to Disneyland where they have an insect film in 3D). Whilst I fell asleep and drooled on my sleeve, he laughed out loud, reacted at the right moments  and invested in what was, to him, an engaging quest narrative (my words, not his).

That got me thinking… Maybe I’m the idiot for not enjoying myself more. To be perfectly honest I think I was prepared to not enjoy myself before I went in – it’s no secret I don’k think much of the other Ice Age films and hold them (as well as attempts by Fox and Dreamworks) in poor esteem to Disney’s latest efforts (we’re obviously not going to bring Pixar into the debate – that’d hardly be fair…).  But the more I saw my little cousin enjoy himself, the more I got involved myself to the point where, by the time we reached the all too predictable finale and parting of the ways – I was practically beaming.

Was it the narrative? The often rousing musical accompaniment? The aforementioned wordplay (Simon Pegg’s dialogue in particular was a highlight for me, more because of the scripting rather than his delivery)? Or was it the fact that I forgot my pre-conceptions and just enjoyed myself, taking the film for what it was?

The way I see it, Ice Age: DoD isn’t trying to deliver a revolution in animated storytelling and, in the same turn, doesn’t seem to be simply about spinning the series out for another quick buck. It’s harmless, uninvolved, palatable entertainment.

Like the plain pasta of the film world –  it’s functional, but you kind of wish you had some sauce. Even ketchup would do.

And what exactly does that mean…?

I have no idea.


Chrisses’ Excellent Day

August 2, 2009

Dedicated follower,

So here we are, episode 1 uploaded and unveiled. Were you at the premiere? Heat magazine were all over us- it was insane!

We had a great time recording episode 1, I hope that comes across on the show. Neither of us has ever really done anything like this before so it was really exciting to actually sit down and know that what was a ‘what if we did our own podcast’ idea a month ago has actually become a reality in such a short space of time!

The day of the recording was quite insane and super positive for many reasons. Firstly there was the general buzz between us that we were recording episode 1 that night, so the text frequency between Chris and I was certaintly higher than most days (up from 2-3 texts to 10-15 texts!)

But then at around midday Chris 1 called me up at work and dropped an absolute bombshell on me and my world….He had a new job! A promotion! One he really wanted to get! And it involves him moving to Scotland!

Obviously there was the utter devastation that Chris was no longer going to be 25 minutes from my beck and call within the next month…but the important thing is that he has this amazing opportunity now up in Edinburgh and that Casta La Vista is now going to be officially International!

But that wasn’t all that this crazy day had in store for the team! At around 2pm whilst on a 15 minute casual break at work, Chris 2 (that’s me) checked his email and learnt that his application to start a Master’s Degree at Nottingham in October – something he is totally excited to begin as it marks the next stage in his development towards becoming Dr Legend (after an official name change) the world’s greatest Academic and part time crimefighter!

Good times!

I can only imaging how confusing this must have been to read what with all the tense changes and shifts in perspective – but I’ve come this far and going back and editing this bugger would only frustrate me and make me lose my buzz! If you’ve made it this far…well done. And thank you.

See you at episode 2.

Christopher


Episode 1 – Cast of the Mohicans

August 1, 2009

Cast of the mohicans

Cast of the Mohicans

Chris and Chris (No relation) deliver a first episode spectacular of their brand new movie podcast Casta La Vista!, filled with Nudity, Profanity and Adventure! Join them as they discuss their favourite news stories of the last few week and give reviews of Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince, Moon and a catch up of all things 2009. Join in at http://www.castalavista.co.uk, contact the team at castalavista@hotmail.co.uk and follow the behind scenes shenanigans via Twitter and Facebook.


An Introduction

August 1, 2009

Dedicated follower,

Let me take you back a month in time. A handsome man, a lonely man, a slave to the passing trade at a 24 hour service station in Greater Manchester, is catching up on his weekly podcast fix- the usual mish mash of irreverent comedy stylings, satirical audio-newspapers and film based review shows. The themes are the same, Hollywood is rubbish, Arthouse rules all, Cinema should only be there to inspire or provoke or incite.

Our hero has had enough! ‘Cinema IS certaintly these things’ he exclaims to the man behind the 6 inch glass, who simply wanted 10 L&B and a Twix ‘But it is also that greatest of mediums that can do so much more. It can lift our spirits on a dreary day, it can make us laugh so hard we have to go to the toilet, it can wow us with mindblowing effects and brainless high-concept action. I, Christopher of Bolton, MUST produce a podcast that appreciates these aspects of Movieland, and gives the everyman a perspective on which of these spectacles of modern cinema are worth watching, and which are shit! But I cannot do this on my own!’

Flash forward a full month and after several exciting meetings and hours worth of free minutes on mobile phones, Casta La Vista! is born and unleashed upon the world. Chris and Chris (for the perfect podcast needs no fewer that two Chrisses) have scoured their minds and trawled up every inane bit of chit-chat they have spoken about movies during their long and amazing friendship and are unleashing upon you, the Dedicated Follower, to enjoy, savour, disagree with and ultimately respond to… and they hope that you enjoy it!

Enjoy episode 1, let us know what you think, and we’ll see you again for episode 2.

Much love babies, much love

Christopher (one half of Christopher and Christopher)

xxx