Wednesday, November 09, 2011

"Immortals" is, apparently, very bloody

The continuing buzz I've heard on Tarsem's "Immortals" - which I've not seen yet - is that the trailers are unable to capture it's real selling point: namely, that it's excessively violent enough to the point of out-goring "300." Here's a newly-released clip (hat tip to io9) of the Gods (gold guys) versus the Titans (gray guys) that seems to suggest what we're in for...



Wait... is that... is that... COMPOSITION!? And... and a... CAMERA TRIPOD!!?? In a FIGHT SCENE!? What a novel approach :)

22 comments:

ANImaniac said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
ponderblogportfolio said...

Well that's just terrible.
And not in a "ew, blood" way, in a "Zach Snyder made this just to out-gore 300, that's just terrible."
I love gory fight scenes, but all soul has been sucked out of this. Thanks for showing this clip, I now know I can give this one a miss.

Brendan Falconer said...

A slo-mo fight with overuse of cg and faceless nobodies killing each other? Haven't we seen this before?

Anonymous said...

It's sad that it looks so weird nowadays for the camera to *not* be shaking everywhere during a fight scene.

That being said, the costumes seemed kind of lame.

vamast said...

the roman empire was the gayest empire

Dave from canada said...

That looks like a video game. A really bad one. Like one of those damnable god of war ripoffs that are licensed from the latest action movie.

Despite what sir David Chappelle may have said, slo mo does not make everything good.

Anonymous said...

Bob, this scene was incredibly lame.

kevmon1116 said...

Anyone else find it weird that when the Titans die they suddenly go slo-mo while everything else goes normal speed? A kind of blanket attempt at artsyness that doesn't help make this movie not look like a college indie with no actual budget. I'm not enthused.

Sssonic said...

Am I the only one who is positively astonished at how tawdry the costumes look here? The armor and weapons just all look so...plastic. Seriously. I could buy those things at a Party City. I realize we can't well use actual metal armor and such, but I also know we can fake those things an awful lot better than what we see in this clip.

I'm also surprisingly underwhelmed by the "gore" this post touts in its headline; it's there, sure, but it feels so...muted. Like "300", the choice to "art" up the fight scenes strips the violence of any real visceral impact for me (ESPECIALLY all the slow-mo, though I grant that it looks less annoying here than it has in any Zack Snyder film I've seen to date) and so, no matter how bad the injuries are, they all just feel so minor and without import.

Also, has this clip been edited at all? Because if not, the pacing here is atrocious. Seriously. It feels like a mini-trailer but without a trailer's arsenal of transitional tools, and so we transition from dialogue to action and from action shot to action shot with all the grace of a drunk elephant. I'm guessing this clip has been edited, though, so that much doesn't worry me too much.

In any case, this clip reinforces my own personal feelings about "Immortals": it's just sort of lifeless, unengaging slop propped up by some nifty visual tricks that ultimately serve to work against the very things the movie is pushing as its primary selling points. I don't know that I'd call this a terrible fight scene, but it sure didn't do much for me, "steady camera" or otherwise.

Dave from canada said...

@Kevmon


This is the guy who did the cell, afterall. Needlessly artsy crap that serves no purpose but pretention is kindof his wheelhouse.

Mads said...

@ Sssonic
"
Am I the only one who is positively astonished at how tawdry the costumes look here? The armor and weapons just all look so...plastic
"

My roommate had that exact reaction. He thought the costumes sucked, and looked really fake.

@ The Immortals

The Nostalgia Critic just did "The Cell" - another of Tarsems movies. His main point: The Cell is an exploitation movie, done by a would-be arthouse director who won't admit to _being_ an exploitation director.

I'm not saying the Critic is a genius, but on this one, I really get his point. Anyway.

I thought many of the scenes of The Cell that he showcased were quite riveting, and I _do_ enjoy what the immortals have goign in terms of action composition.

I think its a huge waste that the scenes are filled with gore, and that the incidental slowmotion is cooky, but fuck if the koreography isn't impressive, and the composition isn't brilliant.

If you compare this to a fight from, say, buffy the vampire slayer...
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CqIiTlZ2ttQ&feature=related

then notice how comparatively hard it is to keep track of whats going on. The shots generally don't have much in the way of composition, because the majority of the time, all the action takes place during closeups, so as to hide the fact that things aren't really that exciting or super-powered.

The fights in this short clip above may be ugly as fuck, and they may not communicate any visceral intensity - but you can tell exactly whats happening even though its twice as many things every second as that buffy clip.

Whatever else this movie is going to be, it understands how to tell you whats going on, which is much more important than making the viewer feel as confused as the characters in the fight. If only the fights for the transformers movies had been done this way, I would be willing to forgive everything else.

jojjo said...

To harp on the costumes some more: why, why, oh why have they given the gods uniforms to a point where there only individual characteristics are their weapons? The mythology geek in me just cringes. I mean, the gods in Clash of the titans looked a bit weird to, but at least the designs where inventive and varied.

Dave from canada said...

@ Mads. Are you seriously comparing a multimillion dollar movie with massive CGI from late 2011 to a fairly inexpensive TV show from 2001?


Strike that: from a poorly made youtube video composed of out of context clips from a tv shwo from 2001.

Shark said...

I have a hunch that this movie will be bad.

Gray said...

Looks great, I wonder if it runs on my PC...

Taylor said...

If the gods and titans could just put their differences aside for one second and turn on C&C Music Factory they'd turn this fight scene into the hottest gay club in town!

In seriousness, it's sad that the the Michale Bays of the world have set the bar so low that we're praising an otherwise mediocre fight scene just because it has a steady camera and basic shot composition?

Not as terrible as typical =/= good.

Dav3 said...

To hell with all of you sheep. That clip is straight-up action Jazz.

I'm talkin' 4:00 in the morning, smoke-filled secret nightclub, shit.

Anyone who can't dig it is welcome to wait out-fuckin-side.

PS- if I sound pissed-off, it's only because I'm not looking forward to having the same arguments about this that I had about Sucker Punch, which was also mind-blowing.

Lee Kalba said...

I THINK that the turning to slow motion, when they die, is supposed to be them returning to mortal speed. I think it's supposed to be that they are moving so fast, that things like a body falling, because of gravity, appear to be in slow motion.

But yeah, speed ramps are over used, the costumes look silly, etc, etc.

And yeah, Sucker Punch was mind-blowing -ly stupid, Dav three. Spectacle and exploitation trying to play at being arty grrl power, is all it was, other than unoriginal. If all you have to offer is, "look at this cool shit", at least be original.

O-Wyrm said...

I have no idea what people are complaining about with this, that was a pretty exciting action scene. The one thing it immediately reminds me of is the combat in the recent Ninja Gaiden game, flowing, graceful, and brutal. And I think the way things move out of time with each other is a very nice touch, not exactly sure how visual flair like that became a BAD thing.

Dav3 said...

This is a pointless argument because what it comes down to is preference, not quality. There's nothing blatantly wrong with the quality of either movie, they just don't appeal to your preferences.

Going back to my Jazz comparison, some people prefer Miles Davis, some prefer Dean Martin. Neither is bad, just different, and I'm sick of hearing otherwise.

Dav3 said...

Nothing is bad simply because you don't like it.

Lee Kalba said...

Can I offer you a polished turd, then?
Stupid is stupid, I don't care how well it's made. High end production does not equal quality.