Manage episode 336790673 series 2645791
As my work involves sitting at a computer for long stretches and watching films requires even more screen time, what I don't really need in my life is yet another sedentary activity which is a shame because I really enjoy playing video games. This week we celebrate entertainments biggest industry, though you wouldn't know it given how little attention is devoted to video gaming in popular media. And you wouldn't really know it when you listen to us either as we try to avoid any computer game references in our Top 5 Games section.
Leigh Whannell is probably best known as the writer of SAW and the INSIDIOUS movies but in 2018 directed the furious and inventive Australian cyberpunk thriller UPGRADE based on his own screenplay. Grey Trace (Logan Marshall-Green) is a retro man living in a near futuristic world who restores old cars for creepy reclusive tech billionaires. When a brutal accident and robbery attempt results in his wife being killed and renders Grey paralysed from the neck down, experimental surgery to implant a tiny microchip called STEM in him might just start to give Grey his body back. Like a slice of 80’s or early 90’s Verhoeven, full of inventive world building, the script crackles and amuses and cinematographer Stefan Duscio makes virtually every scene dazzle through great lighting and unusual camera angles but it's the physical performance from Logan Marshall-Green as an at-times passenger in his own body which astonishes. Judicious use of an innovative visual effect that sees the camera housed in a gyroscopic mounting which then tracks a phone stored on the actors body gives the action scenes a strong and unique visual style and the massive downer ending only strengthened our love for this ambitious sci-fi action revenge flick. Give yourself an upgrade and watch this!
We round out video game week with a look at iconic anthropomorphic hedgehog Sonic in the animated series SONIC BOOM. Based on a recommendation from my youngest we watched the season 1 finale "It Takes a Village To Defeat a Hedgehog" which introduces the second most popular character in the canon, Shadow. Doctor Eggman calls together a complete rogues gallery including Dave the Intern, T.W. Barker and his two circus bears, the Lightning Bolt Society, and Charlie the mad archaeologist to talk about how they might bring down the spiny mammal which involves ambushing Sonic and his friends as they attempt to build their latest IKEA purchase. In the end the furry blue speedster needs a cheap shot while his rival is distracted in order to momentarily defeat his nemesis, the cheating little tw*t.
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Until next time, we remain...