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Every new teaser poster shows a worse example
March 15, 2012 7:31 AM   Subscribe

"So far, 2012 is shaping up to be a great year for archery, what with The Hunger Games coming in March, then Brave, followed by Hawkeye in The Avengers." An archery coach analyzes the technique in three upcoming movies.
posted by 1970s Antihero (58 comments total) 29 users marked this as a favorite

 
Can we get this coach to critique Privezenceva?
posted by cashman at 7:38 AM on March 15, 2012


Perfect timing! Just bought a 45# longbow for the boy (after trying and failing to craft one myself from yew).
posted by Mei's lost sandal at 7:44 AM on March 15, 2012


When I watched that trailer, and it went Atomic Monster, Immortal God, Greatest of the Greatest Generation, Mecha Suit guy...then some asshole with a bow, and a girl with a small gun...umm well two of these are not like the others. Total suspension of disbelief breakage.

Bows are cool but Hawkeye should have stayed in the comic books.
posted by Chekhovian at 7:49 AM on March 15, 2012 [2 favorites]


Bows are cool but Hawkeye should have stayed in the comic books.

how dare you sir
posted by elizardbits at 7:52 AM on March 15, 2012 [2 favorites]


Just reading this list made my right shoulder hurt ( shut up brain stop thinking about the range in Queens, you have a life and friends and are cool now)
posted by The Whelk at 7:57 AM on March 15, 2012 [2 favorites]


That is really sweet. He's a good writer and he is not all snarky and mean with his critique. It's nice, also, that he finds so much to praise.
And now I know why I used to snap my forearm so much. Gotta line up the elbow.
posted by SLC Mom at 7:58 AM on March 15, 2012 [3 favorites]


Totally unsurprised that Merida's form is so good. I bet there were many Pixar field trips to archery ranges, and they probably invited a coach or three to the studio as well.

Pleasantly surprised, however, that Katniss also appears to be shooting with good form. Bodes well for that film, I think.
posted by pts at 8:04 AM on March 15, 2012 [7 favorites]


It's a banner year for toxophilites!

(no pun intended)
posted by Eideteker at 8:07 AM on March 15, 2012


He's a good writer and he is not all snarky and mean with his critique. It's nice, also, that he finds so much to praise.

You can tell he would be a good coach. Renner should really get in touch with him.
posted by Rock Steady at 8:07 AM on March 15, 2012


No mention of We Need To Talk About Kevin, I notice...
posted by ghost dance beat at 8:08 AM on March 15, 2012 [4 favorites]


A Neal Adams/Denny O'Neil-era Green Arrow movie done all '70s-retro and funky would be cool (well—for some value of "cool"). Low on the CGI-effects, high on the urban grit, played straight, more or less. I'd eat that up.
posted by octobersurprise at 8:15 AM on March 15, 2012 [4 favorites]


yeh, they take the research very seriously at pixar. not surprising at all.

lawrence doesn't surprise me, either -- she's young and serious, and the series has some VERY serious fans, the producer has been very clear that she's not taking any chances.

also, having had a little training in the distant past, bad movie archery has always been a pet peeve of mine.
posted by lodurr at 8:18 AM on March 15, 2012


Seriously, I haven't touched a bow in a decade now and even I went " bad form Hawkeye! Not lined up!" when I saw the still photos.
posted by The Whelk at 8:33 AM on March 15, 2012


Wow, this is neat. He doesn't say much about the films with the ladies to explain why they're good, but holy cow, the Hawkeye takedown makes sense. Poor Jeremy Renner if he was hurting his arm the whole time.
posted by jenfullmoon at 8:39 AM on March 15, 2012


Should've hired James Cameron:
He taught Zoe Saldana how to shoot her bow, as he envisioned it. "It's a two-fingered inverted draw past the head, like a Samurai," he said, tracing the shape in the air over his left shoulder. "The archery instructor came and said, 'Do you want me to teach them archery or do you want me to teach them this? This would never work.' I said, 'See that bush? It was a hundred and fifty feet away. I nailed it.'"
posted by entropicamericana at 8:40 AM on March 15, 2012 [1 favorite]


I don't have a lot of faith in James Cameron's account of anything that involves him disagreeing with anyone else.
posted by lodurr at 8:49 AM on March 15, 2012 [19 favorites]


Sequels are whores' movies. The nth movie in a lucrative franchise just isn't going to pay attention to details like this, or care.
posted by daveje at 8:49 AM on March 15, 2012 [1 favorite]


All of the other movies were prequels to The Avengers. This is the big show.
posted by Bunny Ultramod at 8:54 AM on March 15, 2012 [1 favorite]


I'm pleasantly surprised that the form in The Hunger Games is so good. I'm not at all surprised at the form in the Avengers isn't. Frankly, I'm just glad that Renner's not drawing the string with a full, closed fist like I've seen in way too many movies.
posted by asnider at 8:56 AM on March 15, 2012


Collins is a little vague about the archery in the book; Katniss's abilities border on the superhuman in that regard. But then, killing things with projectiles is always a little unrealistic in movies. And sometimes it's better to handwave than give too much detail -- not every writer is victor hugo, nor should they be.
posted by lodurr at 9:02 AM on March 15, 2012


That was a very interesting critique, although unless you're an archery buff most of this is going to sail past your head during the movie (unless they're doing it right in which case you're going to get it in the forehead....).

Bows are cool but Hawkeye should have stayed in the comic books.

I think they're going for Ultimates Hawkeye rather than Classic Hawkeye. He managed to look quite unassuming in his civvies, but then looked like Captain Badass when he put the outfit on, had all the coolest lines - and he killed bad guys with the contents of a cutlery drawer - and his fingernails!
posted by panboi at 9:04 AM on March 15, 2012


Most of the super teams always puzzled me. You have heavy-hitters like Thor and Iron Man teaming up with a guy with a bow who doesn't play well with others. (I don't remember that being a classic Tony Stark attribute, but it was always supposed to be core for Hawkeye.) The plots where 'small talents' become important always struck me as contrivances. I preferred to see more or less like-levels of power, or least shared levels of vulnerability -- but the Avengers mixed more or less complete invulnerability (Thor, Hulk, She-Hulk) with very fragile vulnerability (Hawkeye, Cap, etc.). Always bugged me. One of the reasons I was more of an X-Man guy, and even then only when there were offsetting deficits (you can kill Scott Summers with a bullet, Colossus can't fly, and Wolverine can't lift and throw a car).
posted by lodurr at 9:14 AM on March 15, 2012


So, Hulk. Wow. Where do I begin? I've been teaching kids to "Hulk Out" for the better part of a decade, and I think it's safe to say that I'm something of an expert. Mark Ruffalo says that he took some rudimentary Hulking lessons before filming The Avengers, but looking at some of the film stills from Avengers promotional materials, I think it's clear that he either had a really bad teacher (unfortunately, Hollywood is rife with them) or simply didn't pay attention. Let's take a look at his form.

First, check out this still. Looks great, right? Sadly, no, it only looks "Hollywood great." What we have here is the classic Scream Pose. Open mouth, flexed back, kind of the whole Whitmanian Yawp thing going on. But take a look at Ruffalo's neck here. Notice anything missing? That's right; the tendons aren't standing out. Barely a tendon to be seen. Nearly Tendon-free, I daresay. It's impressively thick, that neck, sure, but is thickfulness really going to help when you're trying to instill fear into a flying robot snake? Not really.

To get a better sense of how to make those tendons really shine, take a look at this photo of Macho Man (and honorary Hulk) Randy Savage. Note that he's pushing his head upward, bringing the corners of his mouth down. This really makes the tendons "pop", and is what we generally try to go for when we're roaring in childlike rage. You can try it yourself at home, if you have a mirror and a neck handy. When you let loose a scream of blind fury, try to imagine your head actually detaching itself from your shoulders. Now pull the corners of your mouth back in a horrible rictus, trying to get your back molars to show themselves as much as possible. See how the tendons stand out a bit more? Exactly. This isn't rocket science, folks.

Now let's take a look at another shot from the film -- this one, of Ruffalo running toward the camera (and, presumably, toward a big enemy of some kind). Not bad form on the shoulders, which are appropriately focused on smashing and shattering things around him. But what's going on with the sides of Ruffalo's nose? His interior cheek region is drawn up in a way that seems to say "I smell something bad nearby" or "I am grossed out". Was there some odorous Limburger on set? Was he looking at a sexy picture of his parents? Was he taught by Ron Weasley, who made this move famous in the Harry Potter films? That, I do not know; all I can see is that Ruffalo's Incredible "Hulk" is looking more like an Incredible "Don't!" (as in, Don't Do That).

For a more accurate Hulking Out, let's take a look at Lou Ferrigno, currently the number one ranked Hulk in the North American division. Note that unlike Ruffalo, Ferrigno is grimacing in a way that suggests he's totally real mean and stuff, rather than simply real disgusted. His nose is still wrinkled, and his upper teeth are still exposed, but he's clearly got more of a "Hey, I'm going to punch you soon, maybe right now! Or in the immediate future!" vibe than Ruffalo has.

Ultimately, I know these details are going to be lost on 99 percent of filmgoers. Will these mistakes effect anyone's enjoyment of the movie? Probably not; most of the American public has never been the victim of Gamma Ray experimentation, and thus they've never experienced the gigantism and verdancy I (and my good friend Doc Samson; Doc, if you're reading this, stay cool!) know all too well. But frankly, with just a few short Hulking classes at my very affordable rates, Ruffalo could have brought up the levels of realism in this film by at least a thousandfold. And that's one "Hulk-Fact".... you can take all the way to the bank!
posted by Greg Nog at 9:16 AM on March 15, 2012 [104 favorites]


actual tears, greg nog. fortunately my nearby office neighbors are out so they didn't hear me wheezing.
posted by lodurr at 9:21 AM on March 15, 2012


I can hardly believe the release of Avengers is still 2 months off given the amount of hype I've seen already. They must be spending a fortune on this.
posted by Hoopo at 9:22 AM on March 15, 2012


You have heavy-hitters like Thor and Iron Man teaming up with a guy with a bow who doesn't play well with others.

Whereas the Distinguished Competition teams up heavy hitters like a planet-juggling Kryptonian, an Amazon warrior who can go toe-to-toe with him, a Martian shapeshifter in the Kryptonian's weight class, a guy who can think and move at light speed, a guy with what amounts to a magic ring that can create anything based on willpower... and a guy with a bow-and-arrow, a blonde in leather who's very good at judo, and a reclusive martial artist/detective who doesn't play well with others.
posted by delfin at 9:27 AM on March 15, 2012 [1 favorite]


I was only citing Marvel examples because I didn't read DC (and to be fair, I only even read Marvel regularly for about 4 years). But, yeah, I'd have the same issue with Justice League. [Have I got that right? Or is it Superfriends? Post-Teen Titans?]

I don't really remember Wonder Woman being able to go "toe to toe" with Superman...did they revise her at some point that I didn't catch?
posted by lodurr at 9:35 AM on March 15, 2012


Gotta admit, tired about hearing about the Avengers... but that Brave trailer was the first one that made me actually interested in seeing the movie in the theater. I hate quick-jump-cuts trailers and would rather see a scene from the movie to get a sense of pacing and dialog interaction.
posted by edgeways at 9:44 AM on March 15, 2012


I just wished that Thor was the Scandinavian socialist that he is in the Ultimates. For those who didn't read that, he told S.H.I.E.L.D. to take a hike and addressed George W.'s foreign policy. When the Hulk was tearing up midtown Manhattan and a couple Avengers were down for the count, a message came over the radio that Bush just signed a fat package to aid 3rd world countries or something like that. And storm clouds formed over Manhattan...

That.Was.Great.
posted by Ber at 9:52 AM on March 15, 2012 [4 favorites]


( shut up brain stop thinking about the range in Queens, you have a life and friends and are cool now)

Look maybe you're wondering why we're all gathered here to talk to you, Whelk. It's because we care about you. But this... well....
posted by shakespeherian at 9:57 AM on March 15, 2012


Sequels are whores' movies.

What a lovely thought. Totally indefensible, but thank you for your art. I think you're trying to tell us SUMMER BLOCKBUSTERS are heartless, art-less cash-ins. I think we knew that.
posted by yerfatma at 10:00 AM on March 15, 2012


That.Was.Great.

Ultimates stuff has a lot of great "moments," but on the whole the stories were really obnoxious. The entire premise was, "Let's re-do the Marvel U, but make a complete dick out of everybody who isn't Peter Parker." Cute, but hardly worth the hype.

You know, kind of like everything Millar has done for Marvel.
posted by scaryblackdeath at 10:16 AM on March 15, 2012 [6 favorites]


I don't really remember Wonder Woman being able to go "toe to toe" with Superman...did they revise her at some point that I didn't catch?

Pretty much every superhero has been revised at one time or another. Superman has ranged from "can leap really high, run really fast, lift a car, bounce bullets away" to "can shove planets out of orbit and can shrug off nuclear explosions" and back again over the decades. Likewise, Wonder Woman is generally considered to be an A-list brawler (not as strong as Superman, but a better-trained fighter overall), but the main question is "who's writing her at the time."

Circling back to Hawkeye, he has always been brash and irreverent, but he's also been trained by Captain America in combat and tactics, and has ridiculous levels of precision with his weapon of choice, along with various gimmick arrows targeting enemies' vulnerabilities. He has been a leader or mentor to at least four different superhero groups, and there are very few with more Avengers time-of-service than him.

The Black Widow, on the other hand, has nearly as long a resume as Hawkeye's, but is mostly in the movie as (a) someone to facilitate espionage/stealth plots and (b) how she looks in skintight black leather.
posted by delfin at 10:22 AM on March 15, 2012


let's take a look at Lou Ferrigno

I've been watching Lou on "Celebrtity Apprentice," and he has some strange facial tic when he gets upset and defensive, like he's trying to spray someone from anal glands in his cheeks. It's pretty disturbing.
posted by malocchio at 10:23 AM on March 15, 2012 [2 favorites]


lodurr wrote:
(you can kill Scott Summers with a bullet, Colossus can't fly, and Wolverine can't lift and throw a car).
Well, Thor can't do 2 out of three of those either. Thor spun his hammer to block projectiles because, until recently, he wasn't bullet proof. And he can't fly either, he throws his hammer and catches it to achieve an imitation of flight.
posted by Critical_Beatdown at 10:43 AM on March 15, 2012


Meanwhile, in real life archery.
posted by MartinWisse at 10:44 AM on March 15, 2012 [1 favorite]


Obligatory: comics artist (and archer) Jim MacQuarrie bitches at length about archery errors in comics.
posted by Zed at 10:58 AM on March 15, 2012 [1 favorite]


Am I the only one who was dismayed that the Brave trailer makes it look like an inferior knock-off of How To Train Your Dragon? Her dad looks like he's played by the same actor (I don't mean the same voice actor) that played Hiccup's dad. And those archers look "wacky" in the same way the kids training to fight dragons did.

I'm sure Merida will be a better character than Astrid and hope the story will be better as well, but those seemed like some serious Dreamworks antics there, complete with Grandpa mooning his rivals ("Faest 'yer iees!" HAHAHA!)
posted by straight at 11:05 AM on March 15, 2012 [2 favorites]


Zed: "Obligatory: comics artist (and archer) Jim MacQuarrie bitches at length about archery errors in comics."

I think he might be the same Jim MacQuarrie that wrote these columns.
posted by Rock Steady at 11:24 AM on March 15, 2012 [1 favorite]


straight: "Am I the only one who was dismayed that the Brave trailer makes it look like an inferior knock-off of How To Train Your Dragon?
The Japanese trailer for Brave is much much better. It actually shows what the movie is going to be about.
posted by Memo at 11:26 AM on March 15, 2012 [3 favorites]


There was this interesting discussion between the various Nostalgia Critic videos that Disney and to some extent Pixar movies are now being marketing like how Dreamworks movies are because audiences have internalized Dreamworks = will have some jokes for adults.
posted by The Whelk at 11:28 AM on March 15, 2012


Like the Tangled marketing made it look a lot like a Dreamworks movie, despite it being firmly in the Disney wheelhouse.
posted by The Whelk at 11:29 AM on March 15, 2012


Oh, i know how Thor flies. Flying is flying, for practical purposes; some of the story-runners are better about dealing with the logical consequences of the mode of flight, but in practice there's not a lot of attention to the physics. (Also, based on what I recall from Thor's entry in the Guide to the Marvel Universe, not much was going to happen if you shot him with a gun. They had some boggledegook in there that they included for the 'strong' characters about the density of their flesh, tensile strength of their skin, etc., and I seem to recall that for Thor it basically put him not a terribly long way on the human side of The Thing. Don't remember if it ever dealt with the fact that the hammer must be providing its own motive force, or he wouldn't be able to fly that way....)
posted by lodurr at 11:32 AM on March 15, 2012


He's a weather god. He's pushing himself around with wind, like Ororo.

He just does the schtick with the hammer because it looks cool and annoys Loki.
posted by Zed at 11:51 AM on March 15, 2012 [1 favorite]


Memo: "
straight: "Am I the only one who was dismayed that the Brave trailer makes it look like an inferior knock-off of How To Train Your Dragon?
The Japanese trailer for Brave is much much better. It actually shows what the movie is going to be about.
"

Wow, that's kind of amazing.

Western trailer:
- haggis n kilts humour
- Billy Connolly
- archery
- red hair
- something about a bear?

Japanese trailer
- HOLY SHIT EPIC WHAT IS THE CURSE?

Also interesting that the title has been changed.
posted by Happy Dave at 11:53 AM on March 15, 2012 [6 favorites]


The throw-and-catch thing used to be canon. I haven't read ultimates, and they revise shit all the time, but that was definitely canon. Plus, he could fly through interplanetary space that way -- pretty sure I remember that. (Anyway, he can summon the thing, so it's got its own motive power.)

Alright, Ima gonna stop talking about Thor now, I'm derailing this enough as it is....
posted by lodurr at 11:54 AM on March 15, 2012


So far, 2012 is shaping up to be a great year for archery, what with The Hunger Games coming in March, then Brave, followed by Hawkeye in The Avengers (though he’s not a very good archer based on what I’ve seen so far, but then it’s easy to be good when your arrows are CGI).

It's kind of a tribute to Brave that he can throw that line off about the CGIness of Hawkeye's arrows in the article about the movie that's entirely CGI.
posted by Artw at 12:03 PM on March 15, 2012


"Whitmanian yawp". Mr. Nog, my hat is off to you dear sir.
posted by princessmonster at 12:41 PM on March 15, 2012


I love it when a blogger takes a topic I don't care about at all and makes it really interesting. Great posts.
posted by qxntpqbbbqxl at 12:42 PM on March 15, 2012


HolycatswanttoseeBraverightnow.
posted by Joey Michaels at 1:02 PM on March 15, 2012


Thor spun his hammer to block projectiles because, until recently, he wasn't bullet proof.

Because having skin that can be broken by bullets but not the Hulk's fists (which can break all kinds of bulletproof stuff like tissue paper) always made sense. deflecting projectiles with a whirling hammer is super-cool. (See also, Wonder Woman's bracelets.)
posted by straight at 2:29 PM on March 15, 2012 [1 favorite]


There was this interesting discussion between the various Nostalgia Critic videos that Disney and to some extent Pixar movies are now being marketing like how Dreamworks movies are because audiences have internalized Dreamworks = will have some jokes for adults.

Nostalgia Chick, actually. This one.

And while, yeah, I wish Renner's form were better (and I think her makes a good point that the correct form actually looks "cooler" than Renner's poor form anyway) I'm glad Hawkeye and Black WIdow are in the movie, precisely because they seem so over-matched. Maybe I just like Rogue-types, but it seems like Nick Fury wasn't going to be exactly turning down anyone's help, and so he's getting both the supermen and the fragile heroes who simply are too brave to back down and not stand by their compatriots. The supermen make for bigger actions scenes, the fragile ones make for better story.
posted by Navelgazer at 3:02 PM on March 15, 2012


Sequels are whores' movies.

What a lovely thought. Totally indefensible, but thank you for your art.


I'd like to claim it as original art, but it was actually William Goldman, who probably knows more about the realities of movies and scriptwriting than the Metafilter hive-mind. And who is happy to admit to his own whoring when working on sequels.

Ask George Lucas why he made The Phantom Menace and not Howard the Duck 2. And before you throw Godfather 2 at me, Coppola only made that movie when he was offered $1m to direct it.
posted by daveje at 4:04 PM on March 15, 2012


Does Tati's Play Time count as a sequel to M. Holot's Holiday and Mon Oncle? Because.
posted by shakespeherian at 5:52 PM on March 15, 2012


Sequels are whores' movies.

Hey, man. Prostitutes are just trying to make a living. Don't tar them with the same brush that you use on the evil eldritch horrors that inhabit the offices of movie producers.
posted by His thoughts were red thoughts at 9:18 PM on March 15, 2012 [2 favorites]


Whitmanian Yawp is going to be the name of my character if I do a second playthrough of Skyrim.
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 11:52 PM on March 15, 2012


The Japanese trailer for Brave is much much better. It actually shows what the movie is going to be about.

My goodness gracious. Thanks so much for posting this. My "CARS In Scotland" fears are greatly allayed.

That last shot with Merida following the ethereal blue lights as they wink out is kind of Miyazakian and I love it.
posted by saturday_morning at 7:01 PM on March 16, 2012


OH MY GOD that Japanese trailer for Brave is AMAZING and I officially have no more qualms about yet another princess movie. She's not just a princess, she's like Oedipus (insofar as she sets in motion the events that may bring her downfall). Yessssssssss.
posted by ocherdraco at 1:39 PM on March 17, 2012


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