Nerds of Oz: Week Ending 6th January 2017

Week Ending 6th January 2017
Happy New Year, everyone, from the TWP and from the Nerds of Oz. Sales were continuing this week, so a bit of crap was grabbed!
Comics


Only managed to read a couple before this post, so only a few gets proper commentaries.

Batgirl #6 from DC Comics.

Harley’s Little Black Book #5 from DC Comics.

Justice League VS Suicide Squad #2 from DC Comics. I had to grab this variant cover one as I love Terry Dodson’s work, maybe as it’s slightly derivative of Adam Hughes’.

Teen Titans #3 from DC Comics.

Titans #3 from DC Comics.

READ! Doctor Strange and the Sorcerers Supreme #3 from Marvel Comics. Writer Robbie Thompson and artist Javier Rodriguez have sculpted an amazing story here where the Sorcerers Supreme through time are banded together to fight one evil. It’s a pretty cool tale focusing on a Native American character who is possessed by the Spirit of Vengeance from Ghost Rider.

READ! Hulk #1 from Marvel Comics. Wow! Occasionally a comic comes along that changes your perspective about comics, and this is one of those. Jennifer Walters, aka She-Hulk, has discovered that her cousin Bruce, the Incredible Hulk has been killed by a friend, Hawkeye during the second superhero civil war, a war that left her in a coma. She’s better now, but having trouble adjusting to being a regular person again, and resisting ‘Hulking out’. This is a story about loss and trauma, and making an attempt to restart your life, even though you are no longer the same person. Incredible storytelling, and subtle art.

Infamous Iron Man #3 from Marvel Comics.
Blurays and DVD


Grabbed an Australian DVD called ‘Red Billabong’ which looks bloody awful, but it’s Australian, so I thought I’d give it a go. Actually, I was wrong, it’s pretty good but has some ordinary CGI.

On bluray I grabbed the Australian release of The Hallow, based on a trailer I saw on the All Through The House Bluray. From Shameless Screen Entertainment I grabbed The Church and The Sect, and from Arrow Video I scored Hell Comes to Frogtown and The Guyver. Don’t Breathe was from last week, but cheekily made its way into this pic!


At the last minute, I also grabbed a steelbook of Stephen King’s IT!
Books


A ‘Strange’ week this week! See what I did there? I grabbed the Art of the Doctor Strange movie book, and one of the D&K encyclopaedias of Dr Strange!


Also I grabbed an awesome book about my favourite types of films, Euro horror, called Euro Gothic by Johnathon Rigby. 
Toys


Many years ago a had a full set of the Justice action figures until my Superman and Brainiac figures suffered from a little water damage, and now I have at least been able to replace the Superman one! I also have a Justice Society Superman one which has suffered the same fate, and I spend my days searching.

This other is a Figma Archetype Next: [she] which I intend on using as a model for drawing. I have been thinking of doing a comic again, and thought this would be a good idea to use as a model for it… and it’s cool!

Video Game Stuff


I grabbed Titanfall 2 when it first came out, but didn’t want to make the investment of $400 odd bucks to grab this helmet… thankfully, the Boxing Day sales continued and this, helmet only, not the game and other stuff, I managed to grab for $65. I’m as happy as I could be, this thing is awesome, and goes nicely with my Assassin’s Creed Hidden Knife and my Gears of War gun!

Amsterdamned (1988) Review

One from the to watch pile…
Amsterdamned (1988)

Shameless Screen Entertainment’s DVD release of Amsterdamned


Film: Shameless Screen Entertainment (henceforth referred to as SSE) are very clever when it comes to the way they release films. As a collector, I am nutty about getting every disc in a numbered collection, and to have the spines make up the company name any various images just makes my brain absolutely freak out if I am missing just one.

SSE have made a few mistakes with their layout of the collection which has caused double ups and other criticisms, but mostly I have been happy with the films they have released, in this case, and number 37 in the collection, we have the Dutch action/ giallo Amsterdamned.

A killer is stalking the streets of Amsterdam… well, not the streets: he travels from victim to victim via the canals, dressed in a diving suit. Our hero, tough guy police officer Eric Vissel (Huub Stapel) is on the case after the discovery of a victim, a prostitute, who was left hanging from a bridge by her feet over a canal.

Amsterdamned: police work at work.


As the body count increases, the pressure on Vissel to capture him does too, but will he and his 80s mullet have the police skills to do so?

So is this a giallo or an action film? Personally I’m not sure, but knowing that director Dick Maas is such a fan of American films, I’d say the latter. The movie is steeped in 80s fashion and there are mullets as far as the eye can see, but the one thing that is omnipresent is the attempt to replicate the bombasticity of the 80s action film which isn’t quite 100% pulled off as there is still a reserved Northern European-ness to it.

Here lies the problem. The film is confused by its identity and doesn’t quite pull off the inherent nastiness and sleaze of a giallo, nor is its machismo fully in place enough for it to feel like a proper action film.

The motorcycle chase scene has to be singled out and identified as pretty amazing. The stunt driver on the bike looks like he’s going to stack it on more than one occasion and has DNA entrenched in The Italian Job… OK, that might be overselling it somewhat, but it’s a pretty cool 3 minute chase. The real winner in this film is the boat chase. Some truly outstanding manipulation of speedboats in the canal make for an epically cool, almost James Bond-y sequence.

Unfortunately the dubbing is occasionally laughable. Not the dialogue itself (though at times it is a bit hokey), but certainly the execution of it. The accents of the characters are… actually I don’t know WHAT they are! I have known several Dutch people over the years and this isn’t quite what their accent sounds like!

If I’m totally honest with this review, and I am always honest, this is about the eighth time I have attempted to watch this film. Why so many? Well, I have fallen asleep during it every single time.

Amsterdamned: dead hooker on a canal boat


That’s not generally a glowing recommendation and it’s not that this is any worse a story than many second string giallos, it’s just paced quite oddly and that makes it feel longer than it is.

Score: **

Shameless Screen Entertainment’s Amsterdamned DVD menu


Format: Amsterdamned was reviewed on the SSE UK DVD which runs for approximately 109 minutes and is presented in a slightly above average 16×9 letterboxed image with an apparently remastered, and quite clear, Dolby 2.0 audio. It’s not digital perfection, but it’s ok.

Score: ***

Extras: The disc opens with trailers for other SSE movies The House With Laughing Windows, Dellamorte Dellamore and 4 Flies on Grey Velvet, before we get to the menu screen.

Other extras on this disc though, include Amsterdamned: the City – the Film – the Makers is a dubbed making-of documentary that is actually pretty interesting even though its quality is not the sharpest, which isn’t a criticism of the doco, but just a reflection of the video of the time. 

There’s an image gallery, which I hate!! Not this one in particular though as it shows promo pics and advertising rather than just movie stills.

In addition to the aforementioned trailers, we also have trailers for The Strange Vice of Mrs Wardh, Almost Human, The New York Ripper, Don’t Torture a Duckling, Cannibal Holocaust and House on the Edge of the Park. The is also a ‘still’ trailer advertising a company called ‘Argent’.

There is also a Dutch, English and American trailer for the film.

SSE have also given us a reversible cover for this release.

Score: ***1/2

WISIA: I probably won’t watch it again, just because it took me so long to get through it once!

Amsterdamned: getting a little head on a boat