REVIEW: SON OF THE MASK

CAST

Jamie Kennedy (Scream)
Alan Cumming (Tin Man)
Traylor Howard (Two Guys & A Girl)
Kal Penn (Superman Returns)
Steven Wright (Resevoir Dogs)
Bob Hoskins (Hollywoodlamd)
Ben Stein (Ferris Bueller’s Day Off)

A decade after the events of the first film, Dr. Arthur Neuman is giving a tour of the hall of Norse mythology in Edge City Museum. When Dr. Neuman reaches the part concerning Loki’s mask, a man in black becomes increasingly anxious. Dr. Neuman mentions that Loki created the mask and unleashed it on Earth, and that those who wear the mask would have the powers of Loki. When Dr. Neuman mentions that Odin punished Loki with imprisonment, the stranger becomes very angry and transforms, revealing himself to be Loki. The tourists panic and flee, but Dr. Neuman stays to argue with the angry god. Loki takes the mask, but realizes it is a fake. In anger, he removes Dr. Neuman’s still talking face from his body and puts it on the mask stand, before getting rid of the guards and storming out of the museum in a whirlwind of rage.x720-eMmMeanwhile, the real mask, which was thrown in the river by Stanley Ipkiss and Tina Carlyle at the end of the previous film, makes its way to a town called Fringe City, not far from Edge City, and is found by a dog named Otis – who belongs to Tim Avery, an aspiring cartoonist at an animation company, is feeling reluctant to become a father. He has a beautiful wife, Tonya, and a best friend, Jorge. On a tropical island, Loki is relaxing until Odin confronts him and orders his son to find the mask. Loki asks Odin to help him, but Odin tells Loki that this is his mess and he has to clean it up. Later that night, Tim puts on the mask for a Halloween party, transforming into a party animal similar to the mask character from the first film. Tim notices Jorge’s crush, Sylvia, standing alone in the back, eagerly confronts her and has her stripped out of her costume and into a skimpy red suit. Sylvia falls into Jorge’s arms, which pleases them both. When the company party turns out to be a bore, Tim uses his mask powers to perform a remix of “Can’t Take My Eyes Off You”, making the party a success, and giving Tim’s boss the idea for a new cartoon, resulting in his promotion the next day.
87d84-ms_5356Tim returns to his house and, while still wearing the mask, conceives a baby. The baby, when he is born, has the same powers as Loki. Meanwhile, Loki is trying to find the child born from the mask, as his father Odin, possessing a store clerk, tells him if he finds the child, he will find the mask. Later, Tonya goes on a business trip, leaving Tim with the baby. Tim, who has been promoted at work, desperately tries to work on his cartoon at home, but is continuously disrupted by baby Alvey. In order to get some peace and quiet, Tim lets Alvey watch TV, which shows Michigan J. Frog. Alvey devilishly obtains the idea to mess with his father’s head by using his mask powers. Meanwhile, Otis the dog, who has been feeling neglected by Tim because of Alvey, dons the mask by accident and becomes a crazed animal version of himself, who wishes to get rid of the baby, but all his attempts are overturned by Alvey. Tim starts to notice his son and dog’s wild cartoonish behavior when Alvey starts harassing him.
'Son of the Mask' starring Jamie Kennedy, Alan Cumming, Traylor Howard and Bob HoskinsEventually, Loki finds the mask-born baby, and confronts Tim for the mask back, but is thwarted again and again by Alvey who uses his powers to protect his father. Eventually, Odin becomes fed up with Loki’s destructive approach and strips his son of his powers. A seemingly-deranged Tim is later fired after failing to impress his boss during a pitch, but is able to reconcile and bond with Alvey. Loki, still determined to please his father, manages to complete a summoning ritual and appeal to Odin to restore his powers. Odin agrees, but only for a limited time, stating this as “your final chance”. Loki then kidnaps Alvey to exchange for the mask, but decides to keep him despite the exchange, forcing Tim to don the mask again to fight Loki. The subsequent confrontation is relatively evenly matched due to Loki and Tim-in-the-Mask possessing equal powers, prompting Loki to halt the fight, and suggest that they let Alvey decide who he wants to live with. Although Loki tries to lure Alvey to him with toys and promises of fun, Tim wins when he removes the mask and asks Alvey to come back to him using the human connection he has forged with his son. Saddened and enraged, Loki tries to kill Tim, but his time runs out and Odin appears in person. Odin disowns Loki, calling him a failure, and begins to banish Loki, but Tim confronts the powerful Norse god and tells him that the most important thing in life is a relationship with your family, and Odin accepts Loki as a son, accepting the mask from Tim as well. Tim’s cartoon, based on his own experiences of a boy and a dog competing for the father’s attention (with Jorge playing the father via motion capture performance), is a hit, and Tonya reveals that she is pregnant again before the film closes.movie-franchise-4Nowhere near a scratch on the surface of the original Mask film but is still family fun. Isn’t a complete waste of money you can still enjoy the film for some of its comic worth’s but in all honesty the film should never have been made.

REVIEW: TIN MAN

CAST

Zooey Deschanel (New Girl)
Alan Cumming (X-Men 2)
Neal McDonough (Arrow)
Kathleen Robertson (Bates Motel)
Raoul Max Trujillo (Highlander 3)
Callum Rennie (Legends of Tomorrow)
Richard Dreyfuss (Jaws)
Blu Mankuma (Robocop: The Series)
Anna Galvin (Caprica)
Ted Whittall (Smallville)
Gwynth Walsh (Star Trek Generations)
Kevin McNulty (Elektra)
Jason Schombing (Sanctuary)
Lucia Walters (Stargate: Atlantis)
Craig Veroni (Dark Angel)
April Telek (Rogue)

The first section of this mini-series is riddled with references to the original story and the musical so many of us grew up with. I was expecting that. But imagine my surprise at the presence of machine guns and chain saws in Oz.  it is now called the Outer Zone, or the O.Z. Then, of course, there are hologram projectors, machines that can project what is in a person’s mind, and cyborgs. After the first section, it grows even farther from the old story. There are still references, of course, but it’s definitely not what we knew anymore. Our heroine, DG, was born in the O.Z., but sent away as a child for her own protection. Unlike her somewhat whiny predecessor, this woman has a bit of attitude and brains. And some serious guts, as she demonstrates when she tries to help a family being attacked by Longcoats, the Sorceress Azkadelia’s henchmen.

Zooey Deschanel does a great  on her portrayal of D.C.. Azkadelia is definitely a far cry from the ugly Wicked Witch of the West. She may be beautiful, but don’t let that fool you. The old witch has nothing on this new version when it comes to evil and cruelty. In place of the Scarecrow, we have Glitch. Once a genius and Royal Adviser to the Queen, he has been reduced to a sometimes annoying, but lovable ditz. This, of course, is because he only has half a brain left. Literally. The witch had it removed so that she could use his knowledge for her own purposes. He keeps what marbles he has left sealed in his head with a zipper.

Replacing the Lion is Raw, a strange, but gentle creature with psychic abilities. Despite his timid ways, Raw is very capable of being brave, especially when it comes to his friends’ safety. The Tin Man is Caine. Or, rather, former Tin Man. “Tin Man” is the term used for police in the O.Z. He lost everything when he was discovered to be fighting for The Resistance. Worse, he was imprisoned in a sealed tin suit for years, forced to watch a holographic image of his family being tortured and taken from him over and over again. All he has left is the idea of revenge and keeping DG safe, since she is the only one who might be able to defeat Azkadelia. The Wizard is anything but wonderful. He might have been once, but has been reduced to a stoner dependent on Vapors, a magic equivalent of ecstasy. Still, in his sober moments he is a big help to the heroes.

The flying monkeys are still in. The old version, ugly though they were, still managed to have a slight cuteness about them. Not these. When they’re not out doing her dirty work, they accompany Azkadelia everywhere in quite a surprising way. Toto is also still in… sort of. The little dog is actually a shape-shifter who was once a teacher to both DG and Azkadelia. After 15 years of imprisonment, he is all too willing to help his former pupil.

Overall, I was impressed. There are spots that could have been better and things that could have been more thoroughly explained, but the concepts and story are quite imaginative. It is really long, but definitely worth at least one watch.  However, I must confess, I’m a little confused as to why it is titled “Tin Man.” That implies that Caine is the main focus of the story, which he is not, although he is given a much more significant role in this version. Oh, well. It was still good, so I guess it doesn’t really matter.