Floating women in horror posters

Ugh, that burger is really repeating  on me....

Ugh, that burger is really repeating on me….

I’ve noticed a new trend in horror movie posters. Floating women. Yes, the studios seem to think that images of unconscious women floating through the air will be enough to make us want to see their movies.

So far, I’ve come across two films with floating women in their posters. Both are horror movies.

Oh, were you using this room? Excuse me, I'll just float down the hall, here....

Oh, were you using this room? Excuse me, I’ll just float down the hall, here….

Is there some reason that they’re basically dressed the same in the horror posters? Just a simple dress and no shoes? I mean, what…did they run out of money on the costume budget? Assuming these were photos of models, of course. And if the horror movie posters were taken from photos, did they hang the model on wires, or did they put out a call for women who can float? So many senseless questions…so much wasted time.

I guess having a floating woman in the posters for a romantic comedy just wouldn’t work.

She's just had a little too much helium tonight.

She’s just had a little too much helium tonight.

Well, unless the dude happens to be dating an angel…. Have a Happy New Year.

The Maze Runner — a review

Wait a sec...did he spell his name with an 'h'? Damn....

Wait a sec…did he spell his name with an ‘h’? Damn….

The Maze Runner is another adaptation of a Young Adult (or YA–which always reminds me of how they say, “Oh, ya!” in Fargo) novel that takes place in a dystopian future. This time the hero is a young man named Thomas (Dylan O’Brien) who gets banished into a weird setting called The Glade, which looks like a nature preserve that’s run by a bunch of other boys who live out a Lord Of The Flies-type existence. Thomas arrives in this glade via an elevator that rises up from the depths of an unseen installation with no memory of his prior life–he doesn’t even recall his own name until he gets the shit knocked out of him while roughhousing with another kid. Apparently, remembering your name is a big deal among these refugees, but they don’t recall anything else.

Judging from the doorway, this was built by somebody REALLY tall and thin.

Judging from the doorway, this was built by somebody REALLY tall and thin.

The glade is surrounded by a gigantic maze that’s built up from humungous slabs of concrete, and it’s a maze that changes direction every day. That’s why the boys send out Runners, two volunteers who run through the maze in an attempt to try and find a way out. But the maze is also loaded with Grievers: large spider-like monsters who hunt down and kill anybody who’s crazy enough to try and make it through the maze. And guess who’s crazy enough to try and do this? That’s right, it’s Tommy. When The Maze Runner takes place in the maze itself, it’s pretty thrilling. The movie really comes alive in this shadowy arena that’s filled with menace.

There, you hear it now? There's something evil in the Maze...and it's tap dancing!

There, you hear it now? There’s something evil in the Maze…and it’s tap dancing!

The Grievers are also a well-executed menace, and director Wes Ball wrings the appropriate amount of tension from these scenes. But the main problem with The Maze Runner is that the characters all feel so flat and lifeless. Instead of getting caught up in Thomas’ struggle, it feels like the film is just going through the perfunctory motions of a YA (“Oh, ya!”) novel with dystopian overtones. We quickly meet the hero, he in turn meets the Lord Of The Flies rejects, and–oh look, some of them are nice guys, and hey, what’s that scary sound coming from the maze? Oh, look, a girl arrives, just in time to create the dutiful romance for the hero. How nice…and boring. There’s really nothing new or different here, nor are the characters strong enough to make you care for them. It’s on par with lesser YA adaptions like Divergent.

I'm glad you're here, we really needed the romance angle.

I’m glad you’re here, we really needed the romance angle.

Instead of creating a vibrant story that stands on its own, we’re introduced to all the tired tropes of this genre as they jump through the proper hoops needed to get things moving along, but we never really care about what happens to anybody. Despite the saving grace of the Maze itself, with its visually stunning setting that’s always enticing to the eye, the overall story just putters along until the kids find out THE TRUTH (another tired trope this film shares with Divergent). But even the reveal at the end is a letdown that leads to more questions that can only be answered by the sequel (and one is supposedly coming). If you’re looking for a far superior adaptation of a YA (YA! YA!) book, check out The Hunger Games, instead. –SF

The Battlestar Galactica model kit

The original Galactica. No bloody 'a' 'b' 'c' or 'd'.

The original Galactica. No bloody ‘a’ ‘b’ ‘c’ or ‘d’.

I recently completed this model kit of the Battlestar Galactica from the original 1978 TV series.

If these engines were on, you'd be on fire right now.

If these engines were on, you’d be on fire right now.

It was released by Moebius Models, and is a much better detailed version of this ship.

If it looks like an alligator on skis, don't worry; no real alligators were harmed in the making of this kit.

If it looks like an alligator on skis, don’t worry; no real alligators were harmed in the making of this kit.

I wanted to show off the great detail work the kit had on the body, so I painted the model flat black as a base coat. Then I dry-brushed Slate Grey over the raised areas. This both brought out the details, along with giving the model a grimy, battle-scarred look.

All clear in front!

All clear in front!

I also built a pair of “rag tag fleet” ships for the Galactica to defend against the Cylon tyranny. Here are all three of my models in a photo-shopped image:

"Off on a lonely quest for a shining planet known as...Venus."

“Off on a lonely quest for a shining planet known as…Venus.”

Thanks, Moebius!

"Hey, you could cook eggs on those hot suckers!"

“Hey, you could cook eggs on those hot suckers!”

My Wolverine Model on a scratch-built water base

Round Two came out with this nice plastic model kit of Wolverine from the X-Men. Having recently seen X-Men: Days Of Future Past (and loving it), I was tempted to build this kit, which has Wolverine posing on the head of a fallen Sentinel.

Wanna feel my claws to see if they're real?

Wanna feel my claws to see if they’re real?

I decided to mount the fallen Sentinel’s head in water.

Hey, Bub, ya gotta life preserver?

Hey, Bub, ya gotta life preserver?

The “water” is a layer of Flex Paste from Woodland Scenic that’s been painted blue (once it dried). When the paint dried, I poured WS Water Effects all over the surface, to give it that shiny, watery look.

You mind getting off my face?

You mind getting off my face?

The Sentinels are giant robots that were created to hunt down all mutants (which is just about everybody in the X-Men). They were the main villains in X-Men: Days Of Future’s Past, but they were first introduced in the X-Men comics back in the 1980s.

Nobody knows the trouble I've seen....

Nobody knows the trouble I’ve seen….

After doing some research, I realized that this Sentinel head design was based on the comics, and so I decided to paint it in the colors that it had in the original comics.

I'm not having a nice day, here...

I’m not having a nice day, here…

The pipes that are sticking out from under the Sentinel’s neck were added by me. They were bits and pieces of extra, unused parts that I had lying around.

Are there anymore of these losers? Let me at 'em!

Are there anymore of these losers? Let me at ’em!