Category Archives: Warner Bros.

Movie Review: WONDER WOMAN

Finally, Wonder Woman gets her very own movie!

“Wonder Woman” is simply the movie to see rounding out its third weekend with U.S. sales at $275 million and $570 million worldwide. You may have noticed there are a lot of showings, including 3D and 4DX versions, and they sell out quickly. All of this is for very good reason. This Wonder Woman movie is very sharp and Gal Gadot in the main role commands the screen at all times, even more so, I dare say, than a Ben Affleck or a Henry Cavill. That had to be part of the thinking behind this first ever Wonder Woman major motion picture. The stumbling block all these decades was supposed to have something to do with whether or not a Wonder Woman movie could ever deliver the box office of a Superman or Batman movie. The answer is YES!

Yes, Wonder Woman can Kick Ass!

“Wonder Woman,” directed by Patty Jenkins, is certainly one of those exceptional movie events. It comes out of that urgent need to get it right. The most brilliant step in getting it right was to set the story during World War I. When was the last time you saw a major motion picture set during WWI? Any young person walking in to see this movie would shrug. There have been a select few, including 2004’s “A Very Long Engagement,” starring Audrey Tautou. The original Wonder Woman comic book was inextricably linked to World War II since it came out during that era. But to rework that same terrain would have been dreadfully tiresome for many a fan. Setting things back to an entirely different epoch opens up different and more compelling options, bringing it all back to basics in a very intriguing way. What could be better than to have a young and idealistic goddess confront “the war to end all wars”? I can imagine that being the pitch to the story by Zack Snyder (Man of Steel) that was fleshed out in the screenplay by Allan Heinberg (Grey’s Anatomy).

HOLLYWOOD, CA – MAY 25: Actors Gal Gadot (L) and Lynda Carter attend the premiere of Warner Bros. Pictures’ “Wonder Woman” at the Pantages Theatre on May 25, 2017 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Alberto E. Rodriguez/Getty Images)

The beauty of “Wonder Woman” is how purposeful it is. Yes, we are dealing with the inevitable origin story. But that becomes a big plus as this is used to full advantage. The opening scenes set in Themyscira, the idyllic world that Wonder Woman comes from, have a refreshing vibe to them. There is a certain amount of dutiful explaining going on but, right from the start, we see quick and steady progress from our main character. We see Diana, the little girl, get the early training she demands. In no time, she has grown into a young woman more powerful than even she could imagine. And, all the while, this phase of Diana’s life, comes across not as merely backstory but as essential. Most importantly, there is a sense of urgency and suspense. In a different era, not too long ago (not exactly over with), this depiction of a female paradise could have easily fallen prey to titillation. More harmful than any supervillain, that would have been the worst sucker punch Wonder Woman could have endured.

Yes, a Wonder Woman can be VERY SUCCESSFUL and POPULAR!

So, let me jump to my big point. I went to see this movie with my 21-year-old daughter. She was not really all that aware of the Wonder Woman TV show, starring Lynda Carter. I tried to explain that it was part of its era, the ’70s, and less enlightened. It was too easy to make Wonder Woman a sex symbol for that show. And my daughter quickly picked up on that and said she appreciated how this new Wonder Woman was not sexualized in that way. I also mentioned that I have read more than one account, over the years, of women claiming to have been inspired as little girls by the spinning Lynda Carter did on the show to magically transform into a superhero. Girls would spin and spin and spin. Again, my daughter picked up on that. She said she was more interested in Gal Gadot’s impressive Taekwondo kicks. I am sure that Lynda Carter would understand.

“Wonder Woman” offers a whole new way for girls to be inspired. They no longer have to just spin and spin and spin. What a remarkable job this movie does in playing catch-up. Had a movie just like this come out in Lynda Carter’s heyday, it would have been hailed as nothing short of revolutionary. Superman and Batman movies have dominated the pop culture landscape for decades having left a Wonder Woman movie at a considerable disadvantage. How this movie overcomes that, with a genuinely inspiring main character, clearly demonstrates that there is a demand of strong and powerful female characters. In fact, the revolution continues and this movie manages to depict Wonder Woman as leading the way.

“Wonder Woman” is distributed by Warner Bros. Visit the official Wonder Woman movie site right here.


Filed under Batman, Comics, DC Comics, Movie Reviews, movies, Superheroes, Superman, Warner Bros., Wonder Woman

A Recap to ‘What’s Up Doc? The Animation Art of Chuck Jones’ at the EMP Museum in Seattle From a Cartoonist’s Perspective

Henry Chamberlain at EMP Museum 13 June 2015

Henry Chamberlain at EMP Museum 13 June 2015

I was the guest cartoonist at the grand opening of “What’s Up Doc? The Animation Art of Chuck Jones” at the EMP Museum in Seattle this Saturday, June 13, 2015. My role there was primarily to draw. I was there to do what I know and love, draw comics. In this case, comics with a Chuck Jones theme. I was simply there to express as much as I could about what I know and love about the world of Chuck Jones. Yikes! Where to begin? Well, one rabbit ear at a time.

Continue reading


Filed under animation, Bugs Bunny, Chuck Jones, Comics, Daffy Duck, EMP Museum, Road Runner, Warner Bros., Warner Bros. Entertainment, Wile E. Coyote

Chuck Jones Animation Exhibit at EMP Museum in Seattle (Opening Day Celebration Saturday, June 13, 2015)


I am so honored to be a part of this amazing event. June 13th will be the opening day celebration for a very special Chuck Jones animation exhibit at EMP Museum in Seattle: What’s Up, Doc? The Animation Art of Chuck Jones.

Continue reading


Filed under Bugs Bunny, Chuck Jones, EMP Museum, Warner Bros.

Interview: Tim Hanley and ‘Wonder Woman Unbound’

From "Wonder Woman Unbound"

From “Wonder Woman Unbound”

Wonder Woman can lead the way out, above and beyond our current state. Wonder Woman commands respect. That respect can carry over to other female characters. It can carry over to respecting all human beings.

That respect is the key to Wonder Woman’s success and popularity. You just don’t mess with Wonder Woman. She is bigger and more powerful than any one person or corporation. With that in mind, it is my pleasure to share with you my interview with Tim Hanley, author of “Wonder Woman Unbound: The Curious History of the World’s Most Famous Heroine.” You can read my recent review here. You can visit Tim Hanley’s site here. And you can definitely pick up his comprehensive study of Wonder Woman right here.

Continue reading


Filed under Comics, DC Comics, DC Entertainment, Gender, Interviews, Janelle Asselin, Sexism, Tim Hanley, Warner Bros., Warner Bros. Entertainment, Women, Wonder Woman

COMIC-CON 2013: Comic-Con Bags Are Now Backpacks With Capes!


Prepare to see a lot more capes this year at Comic-Con. Those monster bags you get for free are now backpacks with capes. Warner Bros. Entertainment is once again the proud sponsor of the official Comic-Con bags and this year they’re very different. You could wear your Comic-Con swag like a backpack or just wear the cape by itself.

Press release follows:

Continue reading

Leave a comment

Filed under Comic-Con, Comic-Con 2013, Comic-Con International: San Diego, Warner Bros., Warner Bros. Entertainment

Movie Review: MAN OF STEEL — You Can Take A Leap Of Faith!


At a pivotal moment, our hero (played by Henry Cavill), asks a pastor for guidance. His advice on whether or not to trust the humans is, “You must take a leap of faith. Trust will follow.” “Man of Steel” proves that a leap of faith will be rewarded. Both Warner Bros., and its audience, have taken the big leap. Warner Bros. chose to create a movie with some bite to it. And audiences have chosen to give it a chance. Since “The Dark Knight,” it seemed all superhero movies were destined to go dark. However, the script by the same talent behind “The Dark Knight,” David S. Goyer and Christopher Nolan, remains true to Superman’s innate power to uplift.

“Man of Steel” mines fertile ground in what is far more than just an origin story. This is simply one of the best Superman stories, period. The trailer and the publicity photos don’t do it justice if you can imagine that. You really just need to see it. I wasn’t sure what to expect but this is an exceedingly good movie. It’s as if everything you know, or thought you knew, about Superman has been cleared aside and you go into this completely fresh.

Come to think of it, you do briefly see a young man out in the Alaska wilderness in one of the trailers. That’s the spirit to this film: cut to the chase, rough and tumble, direct and honest. You’ve got Zack Snyder (“300,” “Watchmen”) directing so you can expect a gritty vibe. Snyder lets all his men be manly men with a strong sense of purpose. You get impressive male performances, notably from Russell Crowe, as Jor-El; Kevin Costner, as Jonathan Kent; and Michael Shannon, as General Zod.


Looking back to 1978 and Richard Donner’s “Superman,” what “Man of Steel” accomplishes is to naturally present a thoroughly contemporary Superman. There is room for pauses, and even hesitation, but it’s at a quicker and steadier pace. There is a sense of urgency running throughout “Man of Steel” that is a lot of fun to watch. Does Henry Cavill measure up to Christopher Reeve? Does Amy Adams measure up to Margot Kidder? Yes, in very different ways. It’s a more no nonsense approach. You won’t find Henry Cavill endlessly fumbling with his fedora or Amy Adams looking just a bit hung over from partying with a rock star. There just isn’t time for it. Even the name, “Superman,” is barely uttered by Lois Lane before the plot pushes us elsewhere. There is so much invested in this very purposeful story that we don’t even need to worry about Clark Kent, ace reporter, at all. Save that for another story.


Krypton is anything but window dressing in the story. The opening scenes on Krypton are so vivid and well put together that you feel you could linger there much longer. Russell Crowe commands the screen as Jor-El. The dispute over how to save Krypton escalates out of control. Michael Shannon, as General Zod, makes for a satisfying villain with just the right sense of menace. In this case, it’s not mere jealously or some maniacal thirst for power that drives the bad guy. General Zod sincerely believes in what he’s doing and will stop at nothing to get there. The fact he’s trying to save his people gives our plot that added weight and clarity.


Thankfully, this Superman movie got it right. It just feels right. It’s the Superman movie for these times without trying too hard to be so. Henry Cavill gets to be a young man trying to find himself without once coming across as a brooding self-loathing Eddie Vedder wannabe. Maybe if he’d worn a hoodie that would have been too much. But no hoodies to be found here. Amy Adams is so natural as Lois Lane that we don’t even care that she’s not a traditional brunette Lois. And yes, she’s every bit a woman matched up to the salty Margot Kidder. And leading the Daily Planet is editor-in-chief, Perry White, played with gusto by Laurence Fishburne. An Afro-American as Perry White in 1978 would have raised some eyebrows but not today.

1978’s “Superman” seems to have had the luxury of playing things a bit slow and off tempo and hardly veering off the well-worn path Superman movies and comics had known since they’d started. But, in 2013, you snooze and you lose. Superman might have appeared a daunting task to get right but “Man of Steel” found a way to make it look easy.

“Man of Steel” keeps that leap of faith flying steadily in the air. It will not only make you believe a man can fly. It will give you faith in more Superman movies to come.

Visit the Man of Steel Facebook page here.


Filed under Comics, DC Comics, DC Entertainment, Entertainment, Man of Steel, Movie Reviews, movies, Superheroes, Superman, Warner Bros., Zack Snyder


Leave it up to Warner Bros. Home Entertainment to bring to life the hit video game as a full-length animated feature film. You can count on Warner Bros. to provide the entertainment. In this case, you’ve got a feature that will truly appeal to any age.


As you can see from the sample clip above, this is something that is literally age-appriate from 3 to 103. This just released clip features Robin (hilariously voiced by Charlie Schlatter) giving chase to Catwoman. The humor is snappy with a contemporary vibe while the plot never goes dark. Sure, it’s Batman in the spotlight but, as we all know, this is a very versatile character and, for this animated feature, you’ve got him here for light action and laughs.

LEGO BATMAN: THE MOVIE is now out! Visit Warner Bros. Entertainment here.

From the press release:

Continue reading

Leave a comment

Filed under animation, Batman, DC Comics, Legos, Superheroes, Superman, Warner Bros.

Harry Potter and the Royals: Kate and Will Can Really Handle A Wand


What a fun photo, from Warner Bros. Entertainment, April 26, 2013:

Today Their Royal Highnesses The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge and Prince Harry visited Warner Bros. Studio Tour London, where visitors can step on to authentic sets and explore behind-the-scenes secrets of the Harry Potter film series. During their visit, The Duke and Duchess raised their wands and duelled against each other in the Gryffindor common room.

Leave a comment

Filed under Harry Potter, Warner Bros.



“Batman: The Dark Knight Returns, Part 2” picks up a few months after the first part so, as director Jay Oliva suggests, Robin (Ariel Winter) has had time to train up and Batman (Peter Weller) has had time to mend his broken arm. Turmoil. Chaos. Mayhem. It’s all here, even the threat of World War III. We also get two all-time throw downs: Batman versus Joker; and Batman versus Superman. Questions are settled, or as close at they can be. There is no holding back. This is based, after all, on one of the most audacious, and thought-provoking, works of comics by Frank Miller. The time is a futuristic present/80s. It could be now but there’s no way we can deny the present time in the original graphic novel, when Ronald Reagan sat in the White House and the Cold War still raged. The threat of a nuclear strike from an itchy trigger finger remained embedded in reality and in popular fiction.


Some might say that Ronald Reagan was the ultimate amalgamation of reality and popular fiction so it is quite fitting to have him play the role of president in this story. He’s the one that concludes that Batman has become a “problem” and instructs Superman to put him in his place. Reagan uses the analogy of a bucking bronco. Sometimes you have to put him down. In this case, the bronco has to be broken. Superman grudgingly agrees. As we’ll come to see, this sets into motion a collision between two forces for good with very different philosophies. Superman places himself within the perimeters of authority. Batman places himself outside the perimeters of authority.


What happens when the government you are supposed to trust in is acting in its own self-interest? What happens when the media you are supposed to rely upon for information is untrustworthy? This is where Superman hopes for the best. This is where Batman relies on his own moral code. And this is where the Joker comes in as the wild card. He keeps Batman on his toes and perhaps helps keep him focused. This animated movie brings all these issues to life starting with the Joker, played with devilish glee by Michael Emerson. In short order, we see the Joker go from inmate to guest on a David Letterman type of talk show. The Joker convinced his therapist that it would be good for him. It’s not long before the Joker is on a whole new killing spree and has found a way to fuel the flames over a dispute between the U.S. and the Soviet Union.


The Batman/Joker smackdown is a beautifully choreographed piece enhanced by the brooding synthesized score by Christopher Drake. Batman commands the stage. He’s nicely paired up with the Joker, who doesn’t ease up for a second. The original graphic novel had them duke it out in some grimy tunnel. But, in this movie, the two find themselves in an amusement park tunnel of love. It’s pitch perfect given their yin-yang relationship and the less than subtle homoerotic undertones.


Once we get to the main event, Batman vs. Superman, the whole world has been through hell. But there’s still a chance, that we can all just get along, right? It doesn’t look good and the stakes are as high as you can go. What’s interesting is that all the factors on how to make this a fair fight have been considered. It’s a pretty awesome fight. Superman, played by Mark Valley, is nobody’s fool and he helps add to the Man of Steel’s stalwart mythos.


There are three main bonus features: a discussion on superheroes in society; an analysis of the Joker; and a behind-the-scenes look at the animation process with director Jay Oliva. Plus you get three animated shorts. And an excerpt from the original graphic novel. It’s a wonderful treasure trove of informed discussion and added entertainment. Warner Bros. goes the extra mile with these features which mirrors their devotion to comics and animation. There’s a genuine respect for comics history and for solid storytelling. It’s a nice added touch to include in the discussion a noted expert in the classics, Richard Rader, along with Denny O’Neil, editor on the original graphic novel, and, especially noteworthy, Jerry Robinson, who was key in the creation of the Joker.

“Batman: The Dark Knight Returns, Part 2” is available now and you can find it here. Visit our friends at DC Comics and see a clip from the movie here.

Leave a comment

Filed under animation, Batman, DC Comics, Frank Miller, Movie Reviews, movies, Warner Bros.





Warner Bros. continues to bring out gems from its archives with the second season of “Superboy.” The plot that launches the season provides us with a Lex Luthor that rivals the Joker in twisted evil. That alone is worth the price of admission as we see Luthor, played by Sherman Howard, chew up the scenery. He dares to force Lana Lang into marrying him and to put Superboy in hospital, at least temporarily.



There is something strangely edgy about this particular Lex Luthor story that will appeal to any Superman fan, or Batman fan for that matter. Among other things, you also get a rather odd take on Metallo and even a face-off with Dracula, which would have fitted in with some of the weird things going on at DC Comics at the time. And, yes, we like weird things. Season 2 of “Superboy” is available now and you can find it here.

Leave a comment

Filed under Comics, DC Comics, DVD Blu-ray Reviews, Superman, Television, Warner Bros.