TV Movie Reviews

MADE-FOR-TV MOVIE REVIEW: “Phineas and Ferb: Across The 2nd Dimension” 2011

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I’m always hesitant when they do a movie version of a cartoon. Why? Because in cartoons, the format is an intrinsic, unavoidable part of the storytelling. Think of a haiku: It’s a very rigid format. If you want to stick six more lines in there, it ain’t a haiku. Loony Toons work great as a series of seven-minute shorts, but blowing them up into a feature film just doesn’t work, and there are plenty examples of exactly how pronouncedly they don’t work. Likewise, an animated sitcom like The Simpsons works great as a 22-minute episode, but it pretty much sucks as a 90 minute movie.

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TV MOVIE REVIEW: “Virtuality” (2009)

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Ah, the summer doldrums, when young man’s fancy turns to thoughts of love and TV networks burn off their unsold pilots in an attempt to amortize their development costs. It’s romantic, really. We get a chance to meet and bond with characters that we’ll never see again, never get to know; we get a glimpse down a road the network, in it’s wisdom, decided not to travel down. We get to test the waters of what the suits think us hayseeds will like. We get a window in to which failed shows from the last few seasons the other suits feel are worthy of ripping off.

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TV MOVIE CAPSULE REVIEWS:Babylon 5:”Legend of the Rangers” (2002), “River of Souls” (1998) and “A Call to Arms” (1999)

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Babylon 5: Legend of the Rangers: To Live and Die in Starlight (2002) – yet another TV Movie, intended as a pilot for yet another B5 spinoff. This one was stillborn, but watching it again for the first time in 5 years or so, I rather liked it. Not great, but I think maybe it had more potential than the quickly-cancelled Crusade. As with nearly all pilots, it’s really exposition-heavy. The acting is all rather stiff, and it’s a crying shame seeing the late Andreas Katsulas in his last-ever appearance as G’kar without him having someone solid to play off of.

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