Buddy-cop movies, you’ve seen one, you’ve seen them all, am I right? No, it turns out, not at all. Bright, Netflix’s most expensive film to date ($90M), directed by David Ayer (Suicide Squad, Fury) and starring Will Smith (Suicide Squad, Collateral Beauty) and Joel Edgerton (It Comes at Night), redefines the genre by owning it, expanding it, and making it ever so much more complex. The results are beautiful. Maybe it won’t win awards for cinematography, though in terms of design and shot selection, it’s competent in the way a favorite taylor is: you’re not getting anything too splashy, but you’re getting dependable results . It’s beautiful because by taking a format that both Ayer and Smith are quite familiar with (buddy-cop), covering that in every regard you’d expect, and then going so far beyond it with tropes unique to the other genres the film harvests, they create something new and improved, and they succeed wildly.
(Editors Note: We’ve had two pretty glowing takes on The Last Jedi, found here and here, so Drew offered to provide a counterpoint to those.)
Star Wars: The Last Jedi is a puzzling movie. Not because it’s mysterious, or full of shocking twists, but rather because it quite literally feels puzzling. The pieces that make up this film are partly formed – there are excellent themes and moments here and there that are the glimmer of what this film should have been – but not all pieces are created equal. Giant portions of this puzzle don’t seem to fit into the greater picture, and almost seem unnecessary to the end goal. There are pieces that you’ll think will make sense in context, but turn out to be from a different box. And while there are small pieces here and there that do form an excellent image, it is far from making a coherent vision.
So, setting metaphors aside, I don’t think The Last Jedi is a bad film. It has good moments, great sequences, and excellent ideas for how to shake up the Star Wars formula without ditching the elements that make Star Wars, well, Star Wars. But it is a deeply flawed, messy, and hazy movie. Problems flare up in multiple areas, but it all comes back to two key elements that The Last Jedi doesn’t nail: execution and characterization. Like I said before, the film has so many great ideas, themes, and moments, but so many of them are poorly explained and implemented that the magic is snuffed out in the theatrical release. The point of this piece then, is to try to explain why so much about The Last Jedi doesn’t work, and by doing so, explain why audience’s reactions have been mixed.
Let me first get this out of the way: these problems are not exclusive to fanboys, and these are not just nitpicks. These are glaring issues that threaten to blind the audience, and chocking the mixed audience reaction up to “fanboys not liking anything new,” is a lazy assertion to make. Despite the high CinemaScore audience grade you can easily find split opinions on this film everywhere. That can happen with cult movies, but not with one of the most profitable film franchises ever. Audience reaction is mixed because this film does a lot of things right, and a lot of things wrong.
Team Battle mode is coming to Street Fighter V: Arcade Edition. The new feature was announced via the Capcom Unity blog yesterday.
The mode will pit teams of up to five players against one another in a lengthy battle of endurance to be the last squad standing. Players will have to stick out their initial character choices, but will be able to change V-Triggers between matches, allowing for adaptation to their next opponents.
A range of customisation options will allow you to set the rules to your liking: Choose whether meter and health is recovered between matches, specific round and timer settings, whether teams can change players between rounds, and if matches are to be fought Elimination style, or as a Best-Of series.
It’s great to see another new mode announced for the re-issue of 2016’s fighter. To be honest though, Team Battle always dies a death within weeks. It did in Street Fighter IV and it did in Mortal Kombat X, to name just two examples. The problem lies in the fact that people are impatient, fully aware that they could have had multiple matches in the time it takes for eight or more players to connect and their series to play out, leading to a ghost town pretty quickly.
Hopefully that won’t be the case here. Provided you have a comrades and opponents to hand, Team Battle is always a blast, especially when the pressure come down on yourself as the last man standing. It can also be very useful in a tournament environment, where Team v Team truly comes alive.
Street Fighter V: Arcade Edition launches January 16 on PS4 and PC.
Webzen’s smash hit MMORPG MU Origin has received yet another massive content update, bringing with it a ton of new things to do and items to collect.
Without further ado, here’s a guide on how to navigate MU Origin’s 2.1 content patch.
Battlefield of Emperor
The Battlefield of Emperor is a new 20 v 20 battle between the Alliance and the Order. You’ll need to be at least 6 Rebirth to play, and you’ll be assigned a place automatically after joining based on your Rebirth level, or moved to a different battle altogether if there aren’t enough players of the same Rebirth level to participate.
You enter the Battlefield of Emperor by going to Event, then All Server Event, then Battlefield of Emperor. You can only join at certain times however. Registration is between 21:00 and 21:25 Monday to Thursday, and battles take place between 21:30 and 22:00 on the same days. The interval between the registration period and the battle period is the battle preparation period, which runs from 21:25 to 21:29.
To win the battle, your side needs to destroy your opponents’ Mineral Base. However, if both Mineral Bases are still intact at the end of the battle the winner is the side with the most points. And if, by some chance, both sides have exactly the same number of points, both of them lose.
There are individual awards too. Warriors who have acquired more than 100 points get Bound Zen and XP. Meanwhile, any Emperor points you acquire by participating in Battlefield of Emperor battles can be used to buy Tarot Cards in the Battlefield of Emperor shop.
Webzen has added a Tarot Card system to MU Origin, allowing you to equip cards to your characters for extra skills and abilities. There are 15 types of Tarot Card, each with two option effects, and you can have six equipped at any one time.
To unlock the Tarot Card system you first need to complete the Master of the Forest quest, and to equip a card you need to go to Tarot Card, then Equip Tarot. Tarot Cards can be levelled up as high as 50.
You can activate Emperor’s Privilege by using the Emperor card in your inventory. This creates level up effects to three randomly selected Tarot Cards in your inventory, including those that have not been activated. If you reset Emperor’s Privilege then the level up effects are deactivated.
MU Origin now contains a Costume Wardrobe, where you can equip and enhance Costumes. Putting a costume in your wardrobe binds it to your character forever, and you can level your costumes up to 10. You do this by collecting more than one of the same costume.
This is a server arena event where two players can join up as companions and take on two other players in 2 v 2 matches, every Saturday between 13:30 and 15:30. As long as both players are online during the event period they can enter the match by going to Double Match. If one companion is offline the remaining companion can still play in a Singles Match.
You have to complete the Hideout quest before unlocking Companion Arena. Once you’ve done that you can access it by going to Event > Server Event > Companion Arena. Each battles lasts three minutes, and every day you can play up to ten of them.
Now things get strange.
In each map there’s an Angel Sheep of Love. You have to defeat this to get the Blessing of Love buff. If your rival gets the buff first, you can seize it by defeating them. The team that’s holding the Blessing of Love buff when the round ends wins. The other way to win is by holding onto the buff for 60 seconds. If nobody has the buff when the round finishes, nobody wins.
Then, one minute after the match starts, the Angel Sheep of Courage appears. If you defeat this you’ll get the Blessing of Courage buff, which allows you to do more damage to the holder of the Blessing of Love bluff.
MU Origin now lets you receive and send Blessings. Just go to Companion Blessing or Character Information > Bless. You can send Blessings whenever you like aside from Sundays between 23:00 and midnight, when the Ranking settlement is taking place.
Blessings take the form of four different flowers. There’s the Flower of Truth, the Flower of Spirit, the Flower of Faith, and the Flower of Companionship, which sends random rewards to random players in Lorencia.
Receiving Blessings increases your Blessing Ranking, and the companions with the highest ranking get a pedestal in Lorentia. The top three pairs of companions get Companion Costumes.
You can now form alliances with other guilds both inside and outside your own server. Guild Masters that are level 5 or over can request alliances by going to Guild > Guild Diplomacy. They take up some of the guild budget.
Alliance requests have to be accepted or declined within 24 hours. Otherwise, they automatically get withdrawn. Alliances can be broken at any point and for a number of reasons, such as a guild running out of currency or being disbanded.
Guild members cannot attack members of guilds with whom they have an alliance unless they’re in a server dungeon or a server event.
It’s now possible to apply a charm to your character. You can do this either by buying one in the shop or by satisfying the activation conditions. Charms helps to increase your character options, as well as looking pretty.
Furthermore, they activate additional buffs when combined with other accessories. You can level these up by enhancing your Accessory Slots with Charm Points.
You start with five Accessory Slots, but more become available as you climb the levels. There are 50 in total.
We couldn’t possibly cover everything this huge update has to offer in detail, but here’s a quick list of some of the other new features.
The Endless Tower now goes all the way up to 130.
Lorencia now has a seasonal theme.
The new Emblem system gives you temporary immunity from status effects.
The max character level is now 12 Rebirth 100.
There’s a new pet, called Snow.
There are more daily tasks.
It’s now possible to view other characters’ specialties
You can set the game to automatically buy potions and enhance seeds.