Review: Pride and Prejudice and Zombies (dir. Burr Steers, 2016)

 

PPZ

 

Review: Pride and Prejudice and Zombies (dir. Burr Steers, 2016)

 

Short Review:

Silly, entertaining, ridiculous fun.  If you enjoy Austen’s novels and are also fond of zombie stories, then this will be perfect for you.  If you like your zombie stories post-apocalyptic, then look elsewhere.  If you like your Mr. Darcy with bursting britches and soaking wet, then you might also want to skip this.  Basically the clue is in the title.

 

Longer Review:

It is a truth universally acknowledged that there are certain people who love Jane Austen’s work, and those that… don’t.  However there are those that are familiar with Austen’s stories (either the novels themselves or the endless BBC period dramas and other filmic remakes) but find them a little pompous, dry, and tedious.  There are also those that find the serious, dystopian horror of modern zombie stories to be a little too horrific and violent.  Good news then, because if this describes you, then Pride and Prejudice and Zombies might be the very compromise you were looking for.

Continue reading

Advertisements

Review: Virtues of War by Bennett R. Coles (Titan Books, 2015)

Virtues of War

Review: Virtues of War by Bennett R. Coles  (Titan Books, 2015)

 

Short Review:

Action packed military SF novel that is smart, well paced, and a blast to read. Coles’ characters are fascinating flawed heroes who are balancing their personal lives and ambitions with their duties as serving officers.  Given the plentiful action, it is surprisingly insightful and joins the ranks of great military SF like Haldeman’s Forever War and Heinlein’s Starship Troopers.

 

Longer Review:

Let’s face it, when it comes to literature I am more a fantasy fan than SF.  I might have studied SF, but my first love will always be fantasy.  So it came as something of a surprise how much I enjoyed this book.  Bennett R. Coles’ Virtues of War is one of those smart SF military fiction novels that dares to be read in two completely different ways.  On the one hand you could read it as a straight-up, gung ho, military SF action story and it doesn’t disappoint.  There are space battles, planet-side encounters, basically action aplenty.  Or, you could read it as a critique of expansionist military regimes, that still has sympathy and empathy for the men and women who serve in the armed forces.  I suppose, what I am trying to get at is that Coles breathes life into the old adage about ‘loving the soldier and hating the war’.  But, as with all attempts to illustrate concepts and bring them to life, it is more complicated than that, and Virtues is all the better for it.

Continue reading

Review and Comments: Daredevil Season 2 (Netflix, 2016)

daredevil-season-2-faq-pic

 

Review and Comments:  Daredevil Season 2 (Netflix, 2016)

Short Review:

Good, but not as great as the first season.  It has more fights, explosions, and killing than Season One.  It has gone more to the supernatural side of Daredevil stories and lessened the realism significantly.  Still does some very clever things with theme and character, but has a more complicated narrative structure that occasionally wobbles and feels a little overfull.

 

Longer Review:

I loved Season One of Daredevil.  I thought it was a gritty, ‘realistic’, down-to-earth superhero show that made the incredible seem plausible, did interesting things with character, and focused on telling a good story.  It was thematically consistent, and, in terms of genre, kept its sights firmly on the street crime elements that gave it an authenticity and credibility.   Season Two didn’t quite hit the same notes for me.  Don’t get me wrong, it is still better than the vast majority of other superhero shows, but the first season was so good that this time around my expectations were perhaps a little too high.   Of course you can’t really hold the show responsible for not meeting every viewer’s expectations, but when the first season creates them, you really hope that the follow up at least meets them.  But there are some aspects that just didn’t work as well for me this time.

Continue reading