I know what you’re thinking. Why is a grown meerkat going to see Captain Underpants? Well, the answer, dear reader, is that seven year-old daughters want to see it, and mummy and daddy couldn’t take her to see Dunkirk, so we ended up seeing Captain Underpants instead.

I confess to fearing the worst from this movie. The trailers did nothing to impress me, but then, I’m not the target audience. Looking at it through the perspective of 8-12 year-olds who enjoy jokes about ‘Uranus’ ‘poopypants’ and various other toilet-related puns, it can be argued this was in fact quite an enjoyable film. It certainly kept my daughter amused!

The film revolves about the friendship of two characters whose names I have already forgotten, who create comics around their character of Captain Underpants, and when their friendship is threatened by a maniacal headteacher, they somehow hypnotise him and transform him into the titular character. Cue various preposterous scenarios. As I said, it’s aimed at a specific age group, and yet manages to be surreal enough in places to get chuckles out of adults too. It managed to be better than expected, but I wish I’d seen Dunkirk!

7/10

Before I delve too deeply into this particular rabbit hole, I feel compelled to issue a few caveats. I do this knowing full well it might perpetuate a mini feud – I also should mention that, unless the person I am passing comment on gives me cause to do so, I won’t make any further responses to them – though should we wind up on the same page, discussing the same video/post/whatever, I make no promises that I will withhold my opinion of said video or post. What this individual needs to realise is that whilst they can indeed control their own board/blog/profile, they cannot silence alternative opinions to their own elsewhere, and if they make statements that directly (or indirectly) are confrontational, they can expect a response in some way shape or form.

Hence why I issued a reply to their thinly veiled jibe about my parenting skills, all because I would let my daughter watch a certain movie. I was not impressed by the sudden and inflammatory post (made even though as per a ‘truce’ made a couple of years ago we had agreed to leave each other alone), and naturally sought to defend myself. I exercised my freedom of speech, I did so without directly referring to this person (and I shall continue to not refer to them directly, unless they give me cause to do otherwise), and I will continue to exercise my right to respond to anything and anyone I please.

So, with all that said, what is it I am aiming to say with this post? To answer my own question, let’s take a look at what I am specifically responding to:

Hey Titan A.E. fans, you should be grateful that I do not harass you over it, I just seek to have my say, avoid arguments, and be left alone about it! 

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The suggestion that anyone should be grateful not to be harassed over liking a movie is pretty ironic given their stance on bullying and harassment. Wanting to be left alone is fine, but if you’re prepared to make public posts on a public site, you need to be prepared to deal with conflicting opinions and ideas. If you’re prepared to drop hints that I’m not a good father because I’ll let her watch a film you have an irrational hatred of, you had better be prepared for a pointed reply.

There is more:

I have very strong feelings about it for good reason.  Titan A.E. is the ONLY fictional movie that is so evil, so toxic, so destructive, and so repugnant that it has earned my permanent wrath and hostility.  I will not allow anyone to defend the evil idea of the Drej blowing up Earth in Titan A.E. since it drives a knife through my heart to even defend the idea.  Titan A.E.is the ONLY fictional movie that I am one-sided against.

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It’s a movie. Granted, people can dislike films (there are a fair few that I don’t like), but the idea that someone can be so blinkered they actually hate a film to the point where they ‘will not allow anyone’ to defend it is a sign, in this writer’s opinion, that someone has a seriously skewed sense of focus and priorities. This is only emphasised by the jibe about parental skills (it’s not like I’d let my little girl watch Deadpool, for crying out loud!)

Right, rant over – I am calm!

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I shouldn’t be writing this post. I should be walking away from it and saying ‘it’s really not worth it’. Really, for the most part, it’s not worth it. It’s a silly little dig that’s irritated me, made by someone who has (in my humble view) a warped sense of reality and priorities. I should not be giving them my time or effort. Yet, I also know that I will be doing exactly that.

Why, I hear you ask? Because that’s how I’m wired. I don’t like letting ignorant remarks go unchallenged – especially when it comes to the subject of parenting, and the remark in question has come from someone who is not a parent.

What’s the remark in question you say?

3) TPM is barely violent and it is largely kid-friendly.  Titan A.E. on the other hand is extremely violent and is even much more violent than Independence Day!  Titan A.E. is NOT AT ALL kid friendly yet some stupid parents let their tots watch Titan A.E. between the ages of 4 and 7!

I spied it on a long-winded rant someone had written on Deviant Art about Jar Jar Binks and a character called Cale Tucker from a film called Titan A.E. The article’s author has a passionate and (in my view) thoroughly misguided hatred of Titan A.E, to the point where he writes about how the film will be killed by other films (yes, he really does put it in such language.

wpid-wp-1446741446606.jpg(is it even possible to hate a film so much you want it ‘dead’?)

In the link above, I mentioned how I would be happy to let my daughter (four at the time of writing) see Titan A.E. It is not explicitly violent or sexualised, and does not contain bad language. It is far tamer than say, Independence Day (which has people fleeing for their lives in a state of mass fear and panic, not to mention millions killed, whereas it is never established that earth is still heavily populated in Titan A.E, and in fact, the presence of many large colony ships at the end of the film would point to an earlier mass evacuation, whilst the film’s prologue strongly supports a successful large-scale evacuation taking place). It is arguably less violent (if we define violence by sheer body count) than Star Wars, which has featured planetary destruction and large wars throughout the franchise, and even less violent than Star Trek (the Dominion War after all, involved untold millions killed, and the Borg gave billions of not trillions of beings a fate worse than death).

Timon7(wait, my daughter will want to blow up earth because she saw it in a film? Riiiight…)

I am digressing slightly. I for one have no trouble with my daughter watching Titan A.E. I have no problem with her watching Revenge of the Sith (in fact, she quite enjoys it, and she enjoyed The Force Awakens too). She is not about to become a megalomaniac bent on mass murder because of any of those films. Why? Because she is grounded by my wife and I, who are teaching her right from wrong. She is also not daft enough to confuse obviously fantastical films with real life, and can separate film action from the real world already (something most of us can do). If anyone out there is crazy enough to believe that the average kid will confuse sci-fi with reality, that’s down to their own skewed sense of the world, and I would advise them that they are using their anger toward a movie to mask something more profound that they are burying.

Whether they read this or not, I have no idea. If they do, I hope they stop to consider that unless they are a parent too, they are in no way qualified to judge me or any other parent. I know my little girl. I know what the right messages are for her and how to deliver those messages.

Avengers_Age_of_Ultron

So the first trailer is up for Avengers: Age of Ultron. This will be the second of the Avengers films, following on from the 2012 film and the various films that have followed (such as Iron Man 3, Thor: The Dark World and Captain America: The Winter Soldier).

There were some interesting moments in a trailer that was more about intrigue than action – Ultron, in what appeared to be a state of disrepair, staggering toward our heroes, Thor grabbing Tony Stark by the throat – people doing ballet??? Hulk fighting a souped-up Iron Man suit, and some few faces too… plenty to ponder, and to look forward to.