Mar 27, 2009
Adopting a long-running manga with countless fan, especially one that many guys my age are grown up with, one that designed by one Akira Toriyama whose character designs are well known (and much loved), and brought them from its fantasy origin to a world resembling our shady and uninteresting world we called “reality” is a challenge. One that is not easy to accomplish and destined to fail miserably if done half-heartedly. On this account alone, Dragonball Evolution is a snorefest at best. In fact, it is probably the first film in a long time that prompted me (and my wife) to just abandon the film at a mere thirty minutes into the film.
Issues of adaptation problem aside, this film is emotionless, not really funny (aw scratch that, it’s NOT funny AT ALL), bad acting all over, and has everything that the manga don’t and I mean it in a very very veerrryyyy bad way.
The film begins with a brief history of the world as seen from the Dragonball Evolution universe perspective. Some 2000 years ago an evil entity Piccolo and his beastly minion, Oozaru laid destruction on Earth, countless have died until an order of monks (or something) sealed Piccolo away (meanwhile, and it’s rather puzzling, Oozaru isn’t sealed, and was let on the loose until finally “forgotten”) and now, we see Piccolo atop some flying vessel, healthy and clearly not stowed away in a prison somewhere beneath the Earth as he’s supposed to be (the how and why are left to viewer’s imaginations), on a hunt for a mystic balls called the dragonballs.
This intro is delivered swiftly in matter of minutes, plenty of colors, explosions and what’s not. Now if you had seen many films, you’ll know that this swift narration at the beginning is rarely work and mostly style only and no substance. Upon seeing this intro alone, I was immediately thought, “Oh, no. This is going to be so bad.” And indeed it is.
It is understandable that to squeeze a multi-arcs story like Dragon Ball into a 90-minute time frame would left many aspect of the original story sawed and hacked. But that was the least of my problem. The script was horrible, the dialog deliveries were flat-out terrible, the one-liner sucker punch is at its best, only an eyebrow rising, and in my opinion, worse of all, the character’s motivations to drive forward the plot is virtually non-existent. I mean, it could be said that the real motivation behind these bunch of youngsters to oppose an evil entity was ranging from a mere nod to the word “Okay, let’s do it.” And what the hell is supposed to mean with Bulma’s excessive make-up? If it’s intentional, please let me know for I’m lost at its merit.
My rating: – / **** A failure on everything. Well, kids seems to enjoy it, though and by I means with “kids” are those below 5 years of age.
Mar 25, 2009
Kanji Disassembled #9: ‘Fight’ - This week’s kanji is another of my favorite kanji. Along with kanji for “love”, these two might well be the first two kanjis I learned to memorize and write with perfection in each and every stroke. It’s the kanji for “war”, “fight”, or any other words that brought forth image of men trading blows with […] »
Mar 24, 2009
Ajax, JSON with Struts 2 - It is assumed that readers of this article is familiar with Struts 2 Framework, Ajax and JSON. Oh, and of course, jQuery. Also a disclaimer, some Java code snippets depicted in this article is taken from Manning: Struts 2 in Action written by Donald Brown, Chad Michael Davis, and Scott Stanlick. Another caveat, should there […] »
Mar 23, 2009
The Wrestler (2008) - Randy “The Ram” Robinson is a professional wrestler way past his prime. Twenty years to be exact. And for a profession that requires dexterity and rather high pain endurance, twenty years past your prime isn’t really somewhere you want to be. The old age has surely taken its toll for the Ram. Having only known […] »
Mar 18, 2009
Kanji Disassembled #8: ‘Green’ - Before I met my wife, when I was asked about “what is your favorite color?” I’d stared blankly at a point approximately an inch in front of my brow for a fraction of second before answering which of course, forgo the definition of a “favorite” in the first place. And my answer is always between […] »
Mar 17, 2009
Struts 2 Select UI Tag Problem - Today, I’ve got a problem that manages to puzzled me for a good part of two hours with Struts 2 select UI tag behavior. This is the code responsible for the said puzzlement. <s:select name="employee.division" list="allDivisions" listKey="id" listValue="name" headerKey="-1" headerValue="-- Select Division --"/> Any seasoned Struts 2 programmers could tell by a glance what the […] »
Mar 11, 2009
Kanji Disassembled #7: ‘Kanji’ - This week’s Kanji Disassembled is about the word ‘Kanji’ itself. As everyone who has the exposure to the Japanese language should be aware of, Kanji is a writing system adopted from China. When or how, doesn’t really matter, unless you’re a historian (and I’m not one), but one fact remains intact, somehow during the inception […] »
Mar 04, 2009
Kanji Disassembled #6: ‘Cardinal Points’ - Whoever said that video games are only for kids needs to gets a reality check. Nowadays, if we talk about games (objects) or gamers (subjects), perhaps kudos to this cute little thing called Wii from Nintendo, we usually divides the discussion topic into two. Are you casual? Or are you hardcore? While it is true […] »
Mar 03, 2009
Quarantine (2008) - Granted, making film in the manner used here in “Quarantine” is nothing entirely new. Back in 2002, “The Blair Witch Project” making a lot of fuss among the movie goers. At the time, though, I was still somewhat on the outside of this circle, looking in and truth be told, I never saw that film. […] »
Feb 27, 2009
Struts 2 Custom Template - Abstract: Struts 2 Framework uses a specialized tags on its JSP file to generate its View page. The Framework processed these tags (UI tags) using template mechanism and these templates are written in FreeMarker language and every copy of Struts 2 Framework are shipped with a default template. This article shows that the Framework’s default […] »