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Interesting and Unusual
You know how in a lot of anime the main character is a boy somewhere around 12 to 15 years old, just hitting puberty. He's got a good heart but he's kind of a loser. He's socially clumsy. He gets bullied and he never really fights back but somehow, he always comes through in the clutch. That's how our hero is in this series in the first episode, except that he is 17. What follows is not a spoiler because it all happens in the first episode. By the way, the anime starts somewhere around the third chapter of the manga. The anime just sort of starts in the middle. There is no real explanation of what is going on other than a few hints. It's a fairly obvious plot. You've seen it plenty of times. A high school class is suddenly sucked into another world where they must fight monsters and demons. You don't really see that happen. It is sort of alluded to in flashes. The story really starts when the boy-hero falls into an abyss. There he manages to survive long enough to eat some monster meat. This gives him more powers. He then uses his newly acquired powers to kill more monsters and acquire more powers. In the meantime, he comes to believe that the world has always had it in for him and his only course of action is to become ruthless and to take what he wants without compunction. He becomes single-minded in his desire to win at any cost, and yet there remains a deeply buried sense of good. It's very unusual for an anime boy-hero to be this decisive and to put his decisions into action without hesitation, even if those actions contravene accepted norms of social behavior. The title word means mundane, ordinary. That's what the boy-hero is at the beginning but he certainly doesn't stay that way long.
Blood Tea and Red String (2006)
It is what it is.
Somebody gave a book to Abraham Lincoln and asked him to write a review. Lincoln read it and returned it with a note saying, "If this is the kind of book you like, you will like this book." I read through the IMDB user comments on this film and most were positive. However, I felt that most had watched it intending to like it. I like a taste of the unusual myself and that's probably why I chose to watch it. I found it interesting and slightly involving but not very enjoyable. It's not really a bad movie. It is rough-hewn and clumsy, but it obviously was meaningful to its creator and to most of the IMDB commenters. They seemed to get a lot of meaning out of it, or at least they put a lot of meaning into it.
Inclusiveness and acceptance of one's true nature are a major theme.
It's about a young girl who was raised by her grandfather in a remote mountain area. All she knows about life is hunting. After her grandfather dies, her ne'er-do-well brother invites her to come to Edo to live with him. The story of the film is set in the latter part of the 19th century. That's when the novel by Kyokutei Bakin was written. The original novel was set around the year 1490. Anyway, the imagery of the film draws heavily on Tokugawa Period woodcuts and the Kabuki theater. The art work is very high quality. It is occasionally easy to get confused because there are a lot of references that are understandable only if you have a strong knowledge of Japanese culture of that period. When the girl comes to Edo she meets a young man who is a fuse. That's pronounced foo-say. A fuse is a sort of were-dog. The girl, named Hamaji, gets caught up in a conflict between caring about the young man and hunting him to collect the bounty. As I said, the art work is extraordinary and the backgrounds are jam-packed with slice-of-life images of the common life of that period.
Key: The Metal Idol (1994)
Pretty much a waste of time.
I found this anime to be a pastiche of confusing unresolved narrative lines and poorly developed characters. Their motivations were sketchy at best and none of them were particularly engaging. The series didn't seem to be going anywhere until the final two episodes. At that point the creators must have felt they had to tie everything up in a neat climax. Unfortunately, all they accomplished was to produce two one-and-a-half hour each features that were almost nothing but talk, as they tried to explain all of the nonsense that went before. Those final three hours of blather did nothing but further waste the viewer's time.
Karakuri Circus (2018)
Layers upon layers.
This anime series is one of the most interesting I have encountered in a long time. It, of course, suffers from all the usual "failings" of the genre, i. e. overacting and a significant distance from reality, etc., etc., but those are in actuality a part of the charm. However, the artwork is superior. There are almost too many characters to count and each one is extraordinarily well thought out and very detailed. They have to be because they are quite bizarre. The cast of characters is made up of humans and puppets and others who appear to be somewhere in-between, sort of cyborgs but not exactly. The story basically revolves around a young boy who is suddenly thrust into this world and finds himself fighting for survival without knowing any of the rules or reasons for what is going on. It is also a story of his maturation. To further complicate the story, the narrative fragments a good deal. If you remember the film The Saragossa Manuscript, a Polish film from 1965, a man finds a manuscript that tells the adventures of the writer. Part way into that story another man begins relating another narrative. Part way into that story another man begins relating another narrative, and so-on and so-on, until at one point I think I was trying to follow six or seven different narratives. This anime does not get that complicated but suffice it to say, there are layers upon layers of story. Add to this confusion the twist that the different characters in the different narratives look alike and you will understand that watching this series is challenging. Challenging but worth it. The following is not a spoiler. At the very end the entire cast of charact6ers appear on-screen in a magnificent curtain call. Then in the final image there is an empty circus ring, and as the lights dim you hear the "click" of the lights being turned out. Clever!
The Sheol Express (2011)
A short film, worth your time.
A short, student film but nonetheless of very high quality. The actors are professionals and do a good job. The technical aspects are extremely good, especially when they were done at bargain rates. The writing, and this is the crux of the matter, is well thought out and was obviously hoped to be meaningful. Meaningfulness in this case has led the writers down the path of symbolism, metaphor and mysticism. There's nothing wrong with that. Some of very good movies have gone there but it is dangerous. It's easy to fall into claptrap. For all its trappings of foreboding, the film ends on a note of hope, as symbolized by a small flower. I've always liked short films. They have so little time to get the point across. They take a lot of skill to do right. Back in the early days of TV there were short films all over the place. There was not much original programming and time to fill. I guess that's where I developed a taste for them. This film had much the same feel as those. Sheol, by the way, is the name of the afterlife in Hebrew mythology. It was a place to which all souls went after death, regardless of whether or not you had been a good person. It was not a place of punishment but neither was it a place of reward. Still, it was better than the Babylonian afterlife. That was an infinite building consisting of corridors and room filled with nothing. Souls were transformed into large, ungainly, flightless birds that wandered from room to room forever. There were no beds or chairs to rest in. There was nothing to see but dust and nothing to eat but clay.
Batman: Gotham by Gaslight (2018)
Don't limit yourself.
A number of people have expressed dissatisfaction with this animated film because it differs significantly from the graphic novel on which it was based. It's true that it quite different. The novel was two separate story-lines, one following the other within the same Victorian era setting. The writers of the film combined those stories and made important changes, additions and deletions as well. The novel was much richer in detail and had a deeper sense of the foreboding mood that squared with that usually associated with the dark, dismal world surrounding the Jack the Ripper story. All that being said, the film should be judged on its own merits. It is dark and spooky. It does have some interesting characterizations and surprising narrative twists. It moves right along with some good action sequences. Obviously, I would recommend both.
Miracle Workers (2019)
My hopes were dashed.
I had high hopes for this series. I very much like The Good Place and thought this might yeild some of the same gold. But where The Good Place is clever, thoughtful and original, Miracles Workers is clumsy, obvious and sophomoric. Radcliffe tries too hard with very little result. Buscemi is too talented for this part. It's sad to watch him wading in a shallow pool searching for nonexistent nuggets.
Guilty Bystander (1950)
Noir ain't what it used to be.
I originally saw this movie on TV back in the fifties. I was in my teens and up until then my primary interest in films was for Disney and big budget Hollywood musicals, lots of flash and flair. After seeing Guilty Bystander I soon began to turn on to films like The Maltese Falcon, Woman in the Window and Angel Face. These films did not give me that happy feeling but rather kept me leaning forward in my chair. When they were over I didn't feel gratified and satisfied; I felt unsettled but mentally stimulated. Noir films are about people in trouble. The hero, or rather the protagonist, is deeply flawed. He is not a nice guy. However, he is kind of admirable. He overcomes his flaws and sets things to right. In Guilty Bystander the hero is an ex-cop named Max Thursday. He is an alcoholic who could not stand up to the demands of being a police officer and quit to become a private eye but couldn't handle that either. When his ex-wife informs him that their son has apparently been kidnapped, he is forced to come to grips with some very unpleasant truths about himself and people he thought he knew. The film checks a lot of the boxes to qualify as noir but it also has a number of failings. There are plots holes and much of the acting is clumsy. Scott as Thursday occasionally embarrasses himself but mostly projects well as a man trying hard to play a bad hand while not fully understanding the game. The film is based on the first of six novels featuring Thursday. The author was Wade Miller, a pseudonym for two guys who wrote a lot of noir crime fiction beside those six. They were probably as good as Raymond Chandler and his Phillip Marlowe character but never were as big a name, nor as well known today. I don't know if this film had anything to do with their lack of success in Hollywood or not but it's a pity that we don't have as much of Thursday as we do of Marlowe.
A Little Bit Offbeat.
First off, the art work is very nice, not spectacular, but very nice. The writing is intelligent. The story, or rather the sequence of story lines, is slice-of-life, quotidian except for the fantastic elements. It's high school kids striving to understand their adolescent conflicts. One of the big differences is, and one of the reasons I liked it is, the main boy character is not constantly struck dumb and impotent by social interactions, as is the usual case. He is cool and competent while at the same time aware that he is struggling for answers just like his peer group. He does his best without making a big deal out of it. He is not an agonized loner although he does tend to stand apart. Perhaps the sense of cool detachment is what induced boredom in some of the watchers.
Camera Three (1955)
Greatly appreciated! Sorely missed!
This was a weekly obsession of mine. Sunday morning before anyone else was up I could huddle close to our 21-inch, black and white TV and get an infusion of arts, culture and literature. "Camera Three" did not discriminate. Anything from Tom & Jerry cartoons to high opera was fair game. One week might be an examination of torch songs, and the next would be Shakespeare, and the week after that would be Japanese films. Examples were given and experts were brought in. There were no ads. It was done as a service for people who felt ignored by by the television industry. Remember, this was at a time when TV was acknowledged to be a cultural wasteland. "Omnibus" was the only other program that served that portion of the viewing public that had free-range curiosity. Nowadays, CBS "Sunday Morning" attempts to address that niche, but, nice as it is, it doesn't reach the same noetic level.
Talent, and comprehension, and sincerity.
Okay, this TV adaptation was produced a long time ago when television was still young and clumsy. It was pretty much like watching a live stage production while somebody chased the actors around with a camera. However, the actors were all top notch. Basil Rathbone was perfection as the cold duke. Roberta Peters, a major opera star, is the enchanted Princess Saralinda who pretty much has only one line that she repeats over and over, but since the line is sung, it's a joy to hear every time she does it. As I said, everybody is a top notch pro. So as far as talent is concerned, they start off with a short novel written by James Thurber, one of the funniest men in American literature. They then assemble a cast of actors who, today, probably could not be afforded for a small production like this. By comprehension, I mean they actually understood the spirit of Thurber's work. While Thurber's writing is often thought of as "light," it was highly intelligent and required intelligence to get it. That leads to sincerity. They didn't play down. They had fun with the action, but they didn't clown it up to appeal to the morons. I don't know what Thurber thought of it, but I believe that if he saw it, he enjoyed it, and like many humorists, he had a hard time enjoying himself.
Scent of Mystery (1960)
Silly and stupid but with one or two good points.
Mostly when people discuss this film they get sidetracked by the Smell-O-Vision aspect. It was made at a time when there was a lot of experimentation with the technology of film making. In the decade previously they had tried 3-D and Cinerama, so adding aromas to film didn't seem that far out of bounds. The technology really wasn't ready as yet and the film, "Scent of Mystery", wasn't good enough to stand on its own. The story was silly and the dialog was stupid. The original film no longer exists as such. Another film called "Holiday in Spain" was cobbled together from pieces of various prints. Some say, therefore, you can't judge the original by the copy. However, the copy does have a strongly coherent narrative flow. It's the original that was stupid. The actors were competent professionals and there is the occasional clever line, but there is a certain amount of embarrassment in watching talent going to waste. There is an inside showbiz secret society feel to it. It's Elizabeth Taylor and her then husband Eddie Fisher working with Mike Todd, Jr. trying to salvage the botched job his father had done. By the way, what I said earlier about the addition of aromas to dramatic entertainment, watch what happens when V. R. adds story lines and acting. They are already adding tactility to V. R. Can odor be far behind?
The James Mason Show (1956)
An opportunity to hear good writing well read.
As I recall this program, it was very simple and straightforward. James Mason, his wife Pamela and Richard Burton were in a library. They moved around between tables piled with books, went to various shelves and pulled books out and generally acted as if they were highly literate individuals enjoying displaying their love of good writing. Once they had selected a book they would read a selection from it and make a few comments. Then, the other two would repeat this process in turn. In this way they would pass an enjoyable half hour sharing the company of friends and allowing the viewers to feel as if they had spent time with their intellectual superiors and had been elevated in the process. This was at a time when people still felt that leisurely, intellectual intercourse was a good, in and of itself. No one was in a hurry to dash off a short, meaningless spurt of characters. One was allowed time to sit and think and take pleasure in the sound of a well turned phase. I'm sure some could level charges of pomposity and elitism, but if they didn't like it, they didn't have to watch it.
China Smith (1952)
Just because it was cheap doesn't mean it didn't have style.
The bad boy hero goes back to the beginnings of literature. In Hollywood it grew most directly out of the film noir school of the forties. In the early days of TV overly sweet and sappy rom-coms were the norm, along with westerns, but somebody had a taste for noir, and so "China Smith" was born. And what baddest, bad boy hero was there but Dan Duryea? He could play a strong, bold villain, he could play a weak, cowardly villain. He could be a nice, honorable guy. He could be a rat. China Smith was all of those. Rod Taylor always wanted to be an action hero with a brain, and so he tried to imitate China Smith in his series "Hong Kong", but it didn't have the grittiness. Sure, the sets were poorly made and the lighting was murky. Duryea was the most talented actor in the series, but he more than made up for the other's failings. Those of us who followed it faithfully in the early, dim days of television knew it was hokum, but we loved it nonetheless.
The House of Magic (2013)
Strictly a child's movie
It seemed as if the primary emphasis of this movie was to demonstrate the 3-D aspects. There were objects, cats, rabbits and other characters constantly plummeting into the audience's faces. The storyline was simplistic and the characterizations even more so. While the artwork was overall professional, it suffered from its being made subservient to the aforementioned third dimension chaos. Even though it was set in Massachusetts, it was made in Europe, Belgium to be specific, and perhaps because of the euro orientation of its creators, it contains certain elements that some Americans might find offensive, i.e. cultural stereotypes. As I said, it's a child's movie, although I hate to think of anyone intentionally making a stupid movie for a child.
Battle of the Damned (2013)
A good film in a bad genre.
Many years ago, when I was still in college, I worked nights and went to school in the daylight hours. My off nights I usually spent watching junk movies on late night television. I learned that there is a hierarchy of junk movies ranging from poor quality junk to high quality junk. The genre didn't seem to matter. They could be drama, comedy, horror, SF, cowboy, you-name-it. This film, Battle of the Dead, is definitely in the high quality junk category. In fact, I even hesitate to call it junk. I only do so because it meets many of the criteria. It was made by non-mainstream film makers, way, way outside of Hollywood or western Europe. The actors are people you've never seen or heard of before. It stars Dolph Lundgren. Now, I have seen Lundgren turn in good performances, given the right material and decent direction, but by and large, he has made film choices based on making the money and getting out quickly. It may very well be that that's why he chose to do this film, but if so, he was scammed into making a film with an interesting concept, a sufficiently competent and professional script and crew, and a director with some imagination. This film, on the surface, sounds like junk. It's a zombie movie with killer robot soldiers. Then, after you find out they are not really zombies, and therefore can be put down rather easily, and the robots usually kill only when they have good reason, you begin to realize that a certain amount of thought has gone into this project. Granted the characters are pretty two-dimensional and the reasons behind why everything is happening are only lightly sketched in, but the action moves right along, there are a number of interesting visuals, and the film is for the most part believable, if you accept certain basic science fiction tenets that run through most post-apocalyptic films. One last word about Dolph Lundgren. He doesn't do much more than stand around and look menacing, but that's why he was hired, and he does the best with what he was given. Basically, I thoroughly enjoyed it.
Here It Is, Burlesque! (1979)
Snapshot of a bygone era.
This was originally a stage show that toured the United States back in the late seventies in an attempt to play on the nostalgia of people who who could just barely remember burlesque, or at least saw some of the old-time burlesque type acts on the Ed Sullivan show. It had some success and HBO decided to capture it on film. It was simply a filmed stage show, but for what it was supposed to be, it was pretty good. There were some songs and dances. There was some slapstick comedy. There were some baggy-pants comedians trading quips, a little off-color humor, and oggling of half naked girls. It was pretty much innocent with an occasional leer. It's fun to watch if you have a taste for old-fashioned humor, or are interested in a type of entertainment that no longer is in style.
A Bunch of Amateurs (2008)
A lot of good ideas and a few faults.
The film A Bunch of Amateurs, directed by Andy Cadiff, and staring Burt Reynolds was filmed in 2007 when Mr. Reynolds was 71 years old. The basic concept of using an aging action star to play an aging action star who steps outside of his formulaic career path to play Shakespeare's King Lear is the first clever idea in a series of clever ideas. Actually, Reynolds' character, Jefferson Steel is more than an aging star. He is a burned-out star, a has-been. He is tricked by his even more aged and broken down agent, played with gusto by Charles Durning, into thinking he will be playing in an important venue in England in the hometown of William Shakespeare surrounded by mobs of adoring fans. Instead he is in a small town community theater production being put on by a dedicated group of amateurs who are just trying to keep their theater from sinking into oblivion. Steel is the only big name they can afford, but if they can draw in a decent crowd, and with the support of a local brewer, they hope they just might make it. There are many parallels between the story of Lear and the story of Jefferson Steel. The character of Lear is old and delusional, Steel is fast approaching that same state, and the theater in which it all takes place is old and decrepit. Lear has daughter problems, and so does Steel. Steel has a hard time shifting from being a Hollywood star to doing legitimate theater in the middle of "a bunch of amateurs." He expects to be catered to and treated like royalty, just as Lear does after he has given up the throne. At one point he says he doesn't think he will be able to do the mad scene on the heath, and ultimately he winds up doing the scene for real as his world collapses around him. It's a fairly low budget production and the seams tend to show a bit, but it does have a lot of good stuff in it, and it has an excellent supporting cast. Anything with Imelda Staunton, Derek Jacobi, Samantha Bond and Charles Durning in it has got to be worth watching. The final resolution of the difficulties with the theater and Steel's relationship with his daughter is kind of easy to see coming, but as I said, it's worth watching. The biggest weakness is Burt Reynolds' performance. The character he plays is supposed to be aging and out of touch, but I could not help but wonder at times how much of it was acting and how much real. Maybe Reynolds is that good of an actor, but there were parts of the film where I felt uncomfortable watching him stumble around not seeming to be quite in touch with the camera. He does ultimately deliver a good Lear although I was reminded of when Lawrence Olivier did Othello. He asked Orson Welles if he had any advice on how to do the part. Welles said, don't do it. Othello is a natural baritone while Olivier was a natural tenor. With an incredible amount of hard work, Olivier transformed himself into a baritone. It's the same thing here. Lear is a baritone, and Reynolds is a tenor, but he never makes the transformation. If you like this film, you might also like a film called A Midwinter's Tale (1995). It's the same idea, a group of actors trying to put on a Shakespeare play against seemingly insurmountable odds.
Chrome Angels (2009)
One of those bad films that might have been worthwhile if...
You know that some films don't make much sense overall, and some hold together pretty well but fall apart at the end, well, this one doesn't make sense on a minute-to-minute basis. The direction is choppy and uneven. The actors can be divided up into those who are incompetent amateurs and those who are competent but unwilling to put any effort into this turkey. The screenwriters occasionally attempted to be clever, with references to other, better SF films, etc., but for the most part their attempts fell flat. Granted, the look of the film was professional and glossy, but it was slapped together in such a haphazard fashion that it only points up what a missed opportunity this was. The basic idea of beauteous babes on motorcycles battling killer androids directed by a evil genius held a lot of promise. It could have been very cool. If they had done interesting camera angles, if they had not interrupted the story with stupid flashbacks, if they had kept the story simple and logical scene by scene, if the characters had been a little more sympathetic, if, if, if a lot of things might have worked together better to make a film worth watching, which this one was not.
The 7 Adventures of Sinbad (2010)
For some reason this movie makes you want to excuse its failings.
It's all very well to try and put this movie in perspective and say it was made on a very small budget, in a very short period of time, and say that it has humor in it and competent actors, but even with all of that, it is still poorly made. If you're going to put it in perspective, compare it to the work of Roger Corman. There was a film producer who knew how to turn out a piece of junk that was not merely bearable to watch but was actually entertaining. This film has flashes of entertainment but have you ever tried reading by a light bulb that only works intermittently? It gives you a headache. Speaking of Corman, one of the so-called moments of interest in this film was a reference to his 1957 "Attack of the Crab Monsters". In fact, there are so many references to other films in "7 Adventures" that I think that was the point of the movie. I think the film makers sat around a box of wine and said, "If we stick in enough references film aficionados will think we're clever." Well, I'm sorry to say, it doesn't work unless you come up to a certain standard of quality. It doesn't have to be a very high standard of quality, but it does have to have a narrative coherence, which "7 Adventures" does not.
Bonnie Scotland (1935)
Not one of their better feature-length films, but not their worst.
This Laurel and Hardy film is probably a spoof of a film called "The Lives of a Bengal Lancer" that was released earlier the same year. Even though it's titled "Bonnie Scotland" it has very little to do with Scotland. The boys show up in a Scottish village, located somewhere on the back lot of the Hal Roach Studios in Hollywood, after being informed that Stan is an heir to a portion of the estate of a deceased lord. They are disappointed in their hope for riches and in financial straits, so they join the British army. They wind up on the Northwest Frontier in British Colonial India, located just around the corner from Scotland somewhere on the back lot of the Hal Roach Studios in Hollywood. Stan and Ollie provide their usual high jinks and a good time is generally had by all, but the film suffers the same problems of most of their feature length films. The studio filled the script with alternative plots that didn't focus on Mr. Hardy and Mr. Laurel. The plot of "Bonnie Scotland" involves a thwarted romance between the heiress of the lord's estate and a penniless law clerk. It is rather boring and certainly interferes with the comedy. One of the funniest scenes involves Stanley, who is chronically incapable of staying in step with the rest of the soldiers. At one point he gets the soldier next to him to fall into step with him and this gradually spreads until the entire regiment is in step with Stanley. The climax involves a great deal of slapstick and ultimately nothing in the various plots is resolved.
Gongpo taxi (2000)
Suffers from poor editing.
Filmmakers too often throw a lot of scenes together without regard to how they interact logically. One scene will follow another without a sense of consistent action. The filmmaker knows what he wants to say to the audience but he gets caught up in each individual scene and will not have a feel for the overall production. This problem is not uncommon, but it is rectified by the hands of a skillful editor. Unfortunately, skillful editors can sometimes be difficult to come by. "Ghost Taxi", as it is known in the USA, is a prime example of this. There are a number of clever scenes but overall, the film does not make much sense. The hero dies in a crash. His girlfriend is threatened by the evil spirit that caused his own death. He fights to save her and dispose of the evil spirit. This would probably make a decent comedy, spooky movie if it were made by Will Ferrell.
Okay Bill (1971)
Rough around the edges but watchable
Granted this film has an amateurish quality, but it has good performances and was directed by John Avildsen who is known for some very good stuff. It was made around 1970 and there were a lot of influences from the hippie era. It's the story of a man named Bill who is a fairly highly placed cog in a big business machine. He has suburban home with a wife and child and is a respectable, responsible person but with a little wildness in his past and still thinks of himself as being an individual and not an automaton. One day he encounters a former friend from his wilder days. This friend is an underground film maker who is working on a project. The friend invites Bill to hang around the set and watch. Bill is intrigued by a crazy, sexy girl cast member and has to decide how far into her world he wants to go. The film is a small character study. It is moderately amusing and reasonably interesting.
Cloak & Dagger (1984)
How real is Jack Flack?
First of all, I think this is an excellent film. It's perfect for its targeted juvenile audience and can be appreciated by adults as well. The question I want to raise is how "real" is the little boy Davey's imaginary friend Jack Flack. Throughout the film he is presented as an imaginary playmate whom nobody but the boy can see. Then, toward the end, a couple of incidents occur that make you believe that Jack Flack may have a certain level of reality beyond the boy's imagination. First, there is a scene in which Davey is running along the Riverwalk in Austin. There are a number of sidewalk cafés located there. It is late at night and the area is deserted except for Davey and the killers chasing him. Jack Flack is sitting at a table drinking a cup of coffee and offers Davey some advise as he passes by. Davey runs on and as the killers pass the table, it is of course empty but the coffee cup is still there. Shortly thereafter, Davey is cornered by a killer. Davey has a pistol and attempts to threaten the killer, who laughs. Jack is standing next to Davey, unseen by the killer. Davey keeps talking to Jack and glancing at him. The killer Is confused by this and tries to see to whom he is speaking. Jack moves away from Davey and calls to the killer, who fires at a shadow or something he thinks he might have seen. When Jack goes down, Davey fires at the gunman, killing him. Jack stands up but Davey is angry that he has been forced to kill a man and tells him he doesn't want to play any more. Jack says, "You're just the same as your father. We used to play Cowboys and Indians but then he got mad and broke his toys." At that point Jack begins to "die". Before he does, he tells Davey, "You're the best playmate I've ever had." To me, these instances indicate that Jack inhabits a level of existence that goes beyond imagination. He is some sort of trans-generational immortal entity that passes from parent to child. Or maybe I just never wanted to give up my toys. That's why I cried at the end of Toy Story 3.