Wherein we discuss Geekbox.net and individual episodes of our various podcasts.

Re: The Geekbox: Episode 21

Postby darkinfero » Jul 5th, 2009 @ 6:05pm

I have to say I love everything about this show. I look forward to listening to it every week. You got me on burn notice and you guys got me into lost. I never watch these two with out this podcast. And Fitch hitch is the best segment by far.
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Re: The Geekbox: Episode 21

Postby kenzo » Jul 8th, 2009 @ 5:08pm

Fantastic!
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Re: The Geekbox: Episode 21

Postby darfox8 » Jul 8th, 2009 @ 6:15pm

kenzo wrote:One of the podcasters (can't remember who) said Transformers 2 was the 3rd best film about transforming robots (insinuating the other two transformer movies were the top two). All I gotta say is, that person clearly hasn't watched Macross Plus.


Or the Returner. Can't remember much about that film but I think it was Japanese and one scene had a transforming robot, and that I enjoyed it. I guess it's not "about" transforming robots but still!
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Re: The Geekbox: Episode 21

Postby Adent » Jul 8th, 2009 @ 11:27pm

Somebody get me a date instead. ;)
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Re: The Geekbox: Episode 21

Postby jungfreud » Jul 9th, 2009 @ 12:07pm

jinpei05 wrote:
Don't misunderstand: I'm not a pro-Asian fanboy, hating on Hollywood remakes. I'm just not a fan of poorly made films that pay no attention to the source material and hold no understanding for it, thereby changing it to make it "safe" for mainstream America, to a point beyond recognition.


I don't know, the American version of "Ring" holds up pretty well. The original (Japanese) is a bit cheesy by comparison, mostly due to the higher budget in the American version.
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Re: The Geekbox: Episode 21

Postby jinpei05 » Jul 9th, 2009 @ 1:16pm

jungfreud wrote:
jinpei05 wrote:
Don't misunderstand: I'm not a pro-Asian fanboy, hating on Hollywood remakes. I'm just not a fan of poorly made films that pay no attention to the source material and hold no understanding for it, thereby changing it to make it "safe" for mainstream America, to a point beyond recognition.


I don't know, the American version of "Ring" holds up pretty well. The original (Japanese) is a bit cheesy by comparison, mostly due to the higher budget in the American version.


I am actually a fan of both versions, but I find the original better. A higher budget does not always guarantee a good movie.
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Re: The Geekbox: Episode 21

Postby jungfreud » Jul 9th, 2009 @ 1:24pm

Well I definitely think the original gets points for well, originality, but in the American version's case they seem to have made some thoughtful changes to make it fit better for American viewers. In other words, the changes they made were by and large positive and enhanced the movie. I agree that virtually every movie that followed fell far short of this mark.
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Re: The Geekbox: Episode 21

Postby jungfreud » Jul 9th, 2009 @ 1:28pm

To get back to the podcast in general, I do think the Fitch thing is pretty entertaining. If they went a little overboard hyping it in this podcast I think it will pay big dividends in the next one, when you get to see what kind of people responded to the "contest."
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Re: The Geekbox: Episode 21

Postby jinpei05 » Jul 10th, 2009 @ 6:18pm

jungfreud wrote:Well I definitely think the original gets points for well, originality, but in the American version's case they seem to have made some thoughtful changes to make it fit better for American viewers. In other words, the changes they made were by and large positive and enhanced the movie. I agree that virtually every movie that followed fell far short of this mark.


I'm sorry, I know you don't mean to, but you're coming off as incredibly "White American."

The whole draw of "Ringu" is the fact it was original and fresh and cuturally placed in Japan. The fact that Hollywood had to remake it in the first place (as opposed to subtitling/dubbing the original version) is a two-fold problem: one, that they're out of truly good original ideas, and two, that they felt compelled to make it "safe" for American audiences.

Make that three-fold: three, people are too lazy to read during a movie.

You are saying that the American version is better or "enhanced" because of the changes? I find them largely unnecessary and pandering to those people looking for cheap scares.

Case-in-point: Watch "My Sassy Girl" and then watch the 2008 DTV remake. You'll see what I mean.
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Re: The Geekbox: Episode 21

Postby darfox8 » Jul 10th, 2009 @ 6:47pm

I don't mid reading subtitles and I also don't mind American-ized remakes. As long as the film is good and it gives credit where it needs to, then it's all good to me. Not sure why I can't enjoy the originals and also look forward to American remakes. I don't think it's a case where the US version takes all the credit while the superior Asian version gets ignored. If someone is a huge fan of The Ring then they probably found out about Ringu and watched it.

I'm not a huge fan so I only know of the original version and I don't feel guilty about that, sorry. The American film was neat, saw it once and enjoyed it, don't care if there's a Japanese version. Maybe one day I'll see it and love it but until that time... pfft whateves bro... ignorant cracker herrrre.
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Re: The Geekbox: Episode 21

Postby jinpei05 » Jul 11th, 2009 @ 3:29pm

darfox8 wrote:I don't mid reading subtitles and I also don't mind American-ized remakes. As long as the film is good and it gives credit where it needs to, then it's all good to me. Not sure why I can't enjoy the originals and also look forward to American remakes. I don't think it's a case where the US version takes all the credit while the superior Asian version gets ignored. If someone is a huge fan of The Ring then they probably found out about Ringu and watched it.

I'm not a huge fan so I only know of the original version and I don't feel guilty about that, sorry. The American film was neat, saw it once and enjoyed it, don't care if there's a Japanese version. Maybe one day I'll see it and love it but until that time... pfft whateves bro... ignorant cracker herrrre.


Of course you don't mind Americanized remakes. They were made with you in mind.

I look forward to remakes too, provided the source material was worthwhile as well. That's usually a big reason why Hollywood bothers to remake it in the first place: There's something special about the original that the director/producer/powers-that-be thought was so awesome that they thought a new audience would love it as well.

Let's be clear: I didn't make my statements to make you or anyone else feel guilty about seeing a movie and not knowing it was originally a foreign film. I'm just annoyed when they come to the US and ends up horribly butchered because some Hollywood exec thought the humor/story/elements wouldn't cross over culturally and instead they make editing/writing decisions that make the film unrecognizably awful, so much so that no one will bother to learn about or watch the original.
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Re: The Geekbox: Episode 21

Postby jungfreud » Jul 13th, 2009 @ 7:51am

jinpei05 wrote:I'm sorry, I know you don't mean to, but you're coming off as incredibly "White American."

The whole draw of "Ringu" is the fact it was original and fresh and cuturally placed in Japan. The fact that Hollywood had to remake it in the first place (as opposed to subtitling/dubbing the original version) is a two-fold problem: one, that they're out of truly good original ideas, and two, that they felt compelled to make it "safe" for American audiences.

Make that three-fold: three, people are too lazy to read during a movie.

You are saying that the American version is better or "enhanced" because of the changes? I find them largely unnecessary and pandering to those people looking for cheap scares.

Case-in-point: Watch "My Sassy Girl" and then watch the 2008 DTV remake. You'll see what I mean.


Well, that's a matter of opinion. I would argue I'm far more objective on the subject of remakes in this case, since the Ring remake was generally well received due to strong performances and some deft modifications to the setting and tone that made it work as a horror movie in it's own right. I think people are smarter than you give them credit for, case in point: the spiritual successor to the Ring, "Ju-on" or "the Grudge," made a much more determined effort to mimic the source material, was set in Japan, and included some Japanese dialogue. Yet it was terrible.

I think people assume too often that American people don't like foreign movies because they are dumb rednecks who don't feel like reading. I think a fairer assessment is that because of cultural differences many foreign movies fail to deliver the predictable rote story patterns, scenes, and conventions that American audiences enjoy, and as such require modification (for better or worse) to find a wide audience. This sometimes results in a decent reinterpretation like the Ring, and sometimes in a crappy one like the Sassy Girl remake. I think, in fact, that the Ring's greatest crime is not anything in the remake itself, but that it led to the popularization of the "J-horror" rush that led them to license every terrible Japanese movie they could get their hands on for a couple years. That probably did more to hurt legitimate Japanese filmmaking than anything else, as every other good Japanese film that might have been optioned and shown in the U.S. was pushed aside.

At the end of the day you have to remember that movies are just stories. While you may enjoy stories about people in other countries getting haunted or falling in love, other people can't connect to those stories unless they can identify with them, and for many Americans empathizing with a Korean University Student or Japanese Businessman simply isn't happening. Is there still a good story there? Prehaps. So they remake it and find out. Don't fool yourself into thinking that foreign directors don't do the same thing when they want to make something as rote as a buddy cop film or a RomCom, and don't think that whatever changes they make to the formula aren't just as attenuated to where they live and their own culture.
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Re: The Geekbox: Episode 21

Postby darfox8 » Jul 13th, 2009 @ 8:06am

I feel like no one is listening to one other, but I also think we all sort of agree of with each other. When adapting a film if you make it too different why even name it the same. But if you make it too similar why would you even bother adapting it and not just put the old film in theater(besides the supposed fear of subtitles). I think these are the real issues with adapting an Asian film. Not the idea that western film makers might take credit for something where the original film makers should of.

I also think it'd be kinda funny if the thread for last week's show out lives this week's show.
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Re: The Geekbox: Episode 21

Postby Namco » Jul 13th, 2009 @ 9:21am

The funny part is how jinpei05 thinks he has the intellectual high ground because he digs the Japanese version of the movie while the gaijins are too dumb to understand it, and jungfreud is speaking on behalf of American movie-goers exmplaining how the successful American version was accurate to the Japanese version, while darfox feels a need to moderate the discussion. All the while the real original source material is a novel written 10 years before the movie.
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Re: The Geekbox: Episode 21

Postby jungfreud » Jul 13th, 2009 @ 9:23am

Also worthy of consideration is the fact that Hollywood studios pay large sums of money to option these movies with complete creative control over the remake project. Since these arguments often revolve around the supposed integrity or sanctity of the original work it's worth noting that they (the creators) essentially sold their movie to Hollywood. This is changing now due mostly to Hollywoods habit of shelving projects and sitting on their rights to them forever (see the proposed "Lone Wolf and Cub" movie) but it still is something to think about when you point fingers at the "bad guys" in this process. If they had negotiated for rights and obtained a theatrical art house release like most European films than you may very well have watched the "Ringu" instead of the Hollywood version. But they choose the dump truck full of money instead, and you get the remake.
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Re: The Geekbox: Episode 21

Postby darfox8 » Jul 13th, 2009 @ 9:33am

See now I think the only way we could solve this is if we all fight!
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Re: The Geekbox: Episode 21

Postby jinpei05 » Jul 13th, 2009 @ 1:58pm

Namco wrote:The funny part is how jinpei05 thinks he has the intellectual high ground because he digs the Japanese version of the movie while the gaijins are too dumb to understand it, and jungfreud is speaking on behalf of American movie-goers exmplaining how the successful American version was accurate to the Japanese version, while darfox feels a need to moderate the discussion. All the while the real original source material is a novel written 10 years before the movie.


Intellectual high ground? Please. I'm far too stupid for that. I'm just expressing my opinion that good original stories from any country have more merit than the Hollywood remakes that try to replicate that Je ne sais qua while sanitizing it for the American masses, and fail horribly to varying degrees.

Like I said before, I'm not here to insult anyone for their preferences for either the original story or the Hollywood remake. As darfox8 said, we're all saying the same thing while not quite listening to each other. At least we can all agree a bad movie is a bad movie, regardless of what language its in. I've seen my share of bad foreign films, more than I'd care to admit.
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Re: The Geekbox: Episode 21

Postby jinpei05 » Jul 13th, 2009 @ 2:13pm

jungfreud wrote:At the end of the day you have to remember that movies are just stories. While you may enjoy stories about people in other countries getting haunted or falling in love, other people can't connect to those stories unless they can identify with them, and for many Americans empathizing with a Korean University Student or Japanese Businessman simply isn't happening. Is there still a good story there? Prehaps. So they remake it and find out. Don't fool yourself into thinking that foreign directors don't do the same thing when they want to make something as rote as a buddy cop film or a RomCom, and don't think that whatever changes they make to the formula aren't just as attenuated to where they live and their own culture.


I disagree. I was never nor was friends with a heroin addict (Trainspotting), a secret waitress do-gooder (Amelie) or a secret kung-fu prodigy (Kung-Fu Hustle), yet I enjoyed all of those films immensely, and I'm sure many other people did too, for the simple fact that they were good stories, period.

And yes, foreign directors are guilty of falling into a rut as much as their Western counterparts, like Tsui Hark and John Woo.
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Re: The Geekbox: Episode 21

Postby JusBlaze » Jul 15th, 2009 @ 2:55pm

jinpei05 wrote:
Namco wrote:The funny part is how jinpei05 thinks he has the intellectual high ground because he digs the Japanese version of the movie while the gaijins are too dumb to understand it, and jungfreud is speaking on behalf of American movie-goers exmplaining how the successful American version was accurate to the Japanese version, while darfox feels a need to moderate the discussion. All the while the real original source material is a novel written 10 years before the movie.


Intellectual high ground? Please. I'm far too stupid for that. I'm just expressing my opinion that good original stories from any country have more merit than the Hollywood remakes that try to replicate that Je ne sais qua while sanitizing it for the American masses, and fail horribly to varying degrees.

Like I said before, I'm not here to insult anyone for their preferences for either the original story or the Hollywood remake. As darfox8 said, we're all saying the same thing while not quite listening to each other. At least we can all agree a bad movie is a bad movie, regardless of what language its in. I've seen my share of bad foreign films, more than I'd care to admit.


After reading through the thread, you're comment about him being "incredibly white American" did come off a bit snobbish and insulting, but I'm sure you didn't mean it. I've seen both and they're both fine though my first encounter was with the American version that I thought was great. The Japanese version was fine as well, but I did enjoy the American version more overall.

Love the Japanese movies in general however.
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Re: The Geekbox: Episode 21

Postby jungfreud » Jul 16th, 2009 @ 9:17am

jinpei05 wrote:I disagree. I was never nor was friends with a heroin addict (Trainspotting), a secret waitress do-gooder (Amelie) or a secret kung-fu prodigy (Kung-Fu Hustle), yet I enjoyed all of those films immensely, and I'm sure many other people did too, for the simple fact that they were good stories, period.

And yes, foreign directors are guilty of falling into a rut as much as their Western counterparts, like Tsui Hark and John Woo.


Well, I was speaking about audiences in a much broader sense, clearly you are of the inclination to enjoy foreign settings and situations. The thrust of your objection to remakes seems to be that they are 1) Unnecessary since the original film can stand on its own, and is often superior and 2) That they are vaguely unethical and disrespect the creators. I think the point I made earlier about how they option the rights hits the second point, but for the first you seem to feel like subtitles are the major stumbling point for American audiences, where I would say that more than that its just the pervasive sense of "foreign-ness", in other words, lack of expected conventions like romantic sub plots and happy endings, etc. that make a remake preferable from a hollywood standpoint.

To make a comparison, look at the ways books are often changed when they go to the big screen. These are works by authors like Steven King that are very popular in their own right, but are still changed drastically to fit the conventions of a hollywood movie. At some point you just have to accept that a money making hollywood movie has to follow a certain formula, irrespective of the source material, and what they do to "Ring" and what they do to "I am legend" is more or less the same.
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Re: The Geekbox: Episode 21

Postby jinpei05 » Jul 16th, 2009 @ 5:38pm

JusBlaze wrote:
After reading through the thread, you're comment about him being "incredibly white American" did come off a bit snobbish and insulting, but I'm sure you didn't mean it. I've seen both and they're both fine though my first encounter was with the American version that I thought was great. The Japanese version was fine as well, but I did enjoy the American version more overall.

Love the Japanese movies in general however.


It's not snobbish or insulting. It's probably a fact. I'm willing to bet that both you and jungfreud are typical white American, ie, your ethnicity is never really called into question or you've never been made an object of ridicule because of your background and if anyone were to look at either of you, they would think, "That dude's white." I'll even go out on a limb and bet that both of you probably have never lived in a foreign country for an extended period of time.

However, as I've said multiple times before, I'm not here to insult anyone or start a ruckus. I'm enjoying this discussion of different viewpoints. Feel free to contradict me if what i've said is untrue and destroy my preconceived notions. It's only through discussions like these that people's understanding is broadened and tolerance is increased.
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Re: The Geekbox: Episode 21

Postby Namco » Jul 16th, 2009 @ 6:05pm

Intellectual high ground + race card. The stakes have been raised my friends!
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Re: The Geekbox: Episode 21

Postby jinpei05 » Jul 16th, 2009 @ 6:18pm

Namco wrote:Intellectual high ground + race card. The stakes have been raised my friends!


WTF are you talking about???
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Re: The Geekbox: Episode 21

Postby Namco » Jul 16th, 2009 @ 8:41pm

I'm just in awe dude. Your profound understanding of foreign cultures has us all falling all over ourselves wanting to know more. I know I can't speak for the rest of us here, but when I see some damn foreign movie like that one you mentioned, what's it called, "Ragu"?, I just sit there slack-jawed until it's over. As a white guy, I don't get it unless it has a cool ending. I'm just glad that someone here actually has the balls to call us out. Bravo, man!!
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Re: The Geekbox: Episode 21

Postby darfox8 » Jul 16th, 2009 @ 9:58pm

Wow c'mon guys. I'm literally laughing out loud here. Not quite sure who's doing the joke post anymore.

Jinpei I really think your assuming too much about the other posters. Especially since it's really easy for them to lie and say, "Naw, I'm Japanese and I've only moved here two years ago." What would you do then? Just assume your still right, just because?

I guess I do feel like I'm moderating because I see where everyone is coming from(mostly from the same place, I think). I always feel silly when I take a thread too seriously. What eves man. Films son, Films.
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Re: The Geekbox: Episode 21

Postby jungfreud » Jul 17th, 2009 @ 9:40am

jinpei05 wrote:It's not snobbish or insulting. It's probably a fact. I'm willing to bet that both you and jungfreud are typical white American, ie, your ethnicity is never really called into question or you've never been made an object of ridicule because of your background and if anyone were to look at either of you, they would think, "That dude's white." I'll even go out on a limb and bet that both of you probably have never lived in a foreign country for an extended period of time.

However, as I've said multiple times before, I'm not here to insult anyone or start a ruckus. I'm enjoying this discussion of different viewpoints. Feel free to contradict me if what i've said is untrue and destroy my preconceived notions. It's only through discussions like these that people's understanding is broadened and tolerance is increased.


Well, broadly dismissing the opinions of an entire race or class of people based on their perceived inability to operate on your intellectual level is going to come off as insulting and snobbish, whether you intended it to or not. That being said, unless you are a diplomat or career military I doubt you have lived abroad longer or speak more languages than I do. Because of that, I don't have a huge boner for foreign things and I can be objective when I talk about them. And despite what you think, "American White" people are not a slavering horde of mouth breathing idiots, and for the most part are capable of the level of cultural sophistication needed to enjoy a foreign movie.

Just a polite suggestion, before you go off on some weird identity politics rant try to make sure that it has some kind of bearing on the topic at hand. Proving your opponent was a cracker was never going to reinforce your points or make your viewpoint any stronger, it's just an ad hominem techinique that ultimately undermines your case and makes you look silly.
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Re: The Geekbox: Episode 21

Postby jinpei05 » Jul 17th, 2009 @ 5:00pm

jungfreud wrote: Well, broadly dismissing the opinions of an entire race or class of people based on their perceived inability to operate on your intellectual level is going to come off as insulting and snobbish, whether you intended it to or not. That being said, unless you are a diplomat or career military I doubt you have lived abroad longer or speak more languages than I do. Because of that, I don't have a huge boner for foreign things and I can be objective when I talk about them. And despite what you think, "American White" people are not a slavering horde of mouth breathing idiots, and for the most part are capable of the level of cultural sophistication needed to enjoy a foreign movie.

Just a polite suggestion, before you go off on some weird identity politics rant try to make sure that it has some kind of bearing on the topic at hand. Proving your opponent was a cracker was never going to reinforce your points or make your viewpoint any stronger, it's just an ad hominem techinique that ultimately undermines your case and makes you look silly.


Hold the phone. Let's get some things straight.

I never dismissed the opinions of an entire race because they couldn't operate on my so-called intellectual level. I simply disagreed because of my background (ie, movie viewing experience, cultural background, world traveling experiences, teaching English abroad, living in Manhattan) just as you and many other contributors to this discussion did. Not once did I say someone's opinion was invalid or that the person expressing said opinion was stupid or a slack-jawed yokel. And after living decades in the styx of Indiana, I can't tell you how many times i suggested a foreign film playing in theatres or at the local video store and my friends give me a look like I shit on the floor.

And the reason I brought up my heritage was because it was relevant to the discussion as I just explained. Living as one of five Asian kids in my high school in a small predominantly white town in Indiana is going to influence my affinity/aversion to certain things, just as your upbringing and heritage will for you.

And by the way, just because you don't have a so-called "boner" doesn't necessarily make you objective on speaking on foreign cultures. That statement itself shows a bias in your preferences. And who said I ever had a "boner" for foreign cultures? I'm as enamored with the US as I am with foreign cultures.

Again, I'm not here to cause a ruckus. If i stepped on any toes, I apologize.

So what's your story? Army brat? Missionary's kid? I'm curious to know.
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Re: The Geekbox: Episode 21

Postby Namco » Jul 17th, 2009 @ 8:06pm

Since you're from Indiana, you've most likely heard the expression "Don't piss on me and tell me it's rainin'."
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Re: The Geekbox: Episode 21

Postby jinpei05 » Jul 18th, 2009 @ 2:04pm

Namco wrote:Since you're from Indiana, you've most likely heard the expression "Don't piss on me and tell me it's rainin'."


Actually, I haven't, but I will remember that one. :)
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