Movie Review: Suicide Squad

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Before I saw this summer’s long-awaited and nauseatingly-hyped antihero ensemble movie Suicide Squad, I was having a difficult time processing all of the venom with which the Internet had become flush over it. I’m going to preface my review by stating that although I may be in the minority, I enjoyed the film overall. That certainly does not mean the movie was without its flaws, because there was plenty that the audience at large, myself included, did not like about it. Here I will paint an honest picture of the Suicide Squad – the good, the bad and the ugly will all be analyzed in this review. Continue reading

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Funko Friday: Batman

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It’s Friday night, and here at The No Seatbelt Blog, I celebrate it by writing about toys. Because that’s what nerds do. Every week, I showcase another piece of my collection of Funko’s Pop! vinyl figures, offering some background on the featured character, its origin, and significance to me. Funko has won a piece of my nerdy heart with this line of compact, inexpensive, big-headed collectibles, and my collection of them has grown exponentially over the last few years. Continue reading

Funko Friday: The Joker

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“Some men just want to watch the world burn,” said the great Michael Caine as Alfred Pennyworth in The Dark Knight. That morbid desire was certainly true of The Joker in that incredible film, and the character’s portrayal by Heath Ledger made you believe that without a shred of doubt. Ledger’s performance as Batman’s nemesis was unexpectedly scary, and is to this day, at least in my book, incomparable. As a self-proclaimed “agent of chaos,” he wanted to bring Gotham City to its knees, if for no other reason than the fact that he could. Everyone knows that the scariest motive for a villain to have for the death and destruction they wreak is no real motive at all, and that concept makes movies such as The Dark Knight so much more fun.  Continue reading

Funko Friday: Bane

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I picked up this Funko Pop! Doll that resembles the marble-mouthed villain from The Dark Knight Rises in a shop on the boardwalk in either Ocean City or Wildwood, New Jersey. I got him for about ten bucks, and not long after that, Funko discontinued it, sending its value skywards. I’ve seen him going for as much as $230 on Ebay and Amazon. I’ve been tempted to sell him, but I think I’ll hold onto him for a few more years or until someone gives me an answer I can’t refuse. For toy collectors, the Funko train is a great one to be on, since the Pop! dolls are very inexpensive, and when they are retired, their sale value often goes through the roof, assuming you can overcome whatever sentimental value is attached to the character.  Continue reading

A Look Ahead: The Movies of 2016

As far as cinema is concerned, 2016 will be The Year of the Nerd. The Marvel and DC Comics universes will be heavy hitters, an Independence Day sequel nearly twenty years in the making will hit theaters, the long-awaited and debated female-fronted Ghostbusters film will arrive, and we’ll also see another appearance by the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. In this look into next year’s movie schedule, I’ll offer brief discussions of eight movies that I cannot wait to see, and I’m sure I’m in good company. Continue reading

A Day With The Toy Hunter

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Last Saturday, in celebration of my friend Jack’s 30th birthday, we embarked upon the most glorious part of our mission to reclaim our childhoods, one toy at a time. With our friends and fellow nerds Andrew and Cory in tow, we took the long trip up to Westwood, New Jersey, to visit Hollywood Heroes, a vintage collectibles shop owned by Jordan Hembrough of TV’s Toy Hunter. The store is only open for a handful of hours on Fridays and Saturdays, as Hembrough travels around the world looking for vintage toys of untold value. On Toy Hunter, which was the highest-rated show on the Travel Channel before the network inexplicably cancelled it, he would raid the basements and attics of other toy collectors, searching for rare toys to resell at his store, at conventions such as Comic-Con, or to his celebrity clients like Gene Simmons from KISS, or Kirk Hammett from Metallica.  Continue reading