Kara Babcock

I read, write, code, and knit.

5 Articles Tagged with “review”

  1. Review of Moxie

    I review Netflix film Moxie, which I thoroughly enjoyed yet also find very problematic and unsatisfying! Intrigued? SPOILERS AHEAD.

    A film by Amy Poehler comes to Netflix, based on a young adult novel about a high school girl rediscovering her mother’s feminist roots and feeling empowered, as a result, to stand up and say something about the atmosphere at her school? Count me in! I really enjoyed Moxie, and overall I would recommend it (especially to a younger audience—of all genders, because men need to learn about these issues too). It is a good movie. However, it is not a great movie. It is a very messy movie that often trips up in its eagerness to tackle as many feminist issues as it can. Moreover, despite its theme that girls and women can be empowered and do anything as long as they take a stand, the movie itself feels limited by the very nature of what Netflix seems to think will sell on its platform.

    Spoilers ahead! Also, content warning for the discussion of misogyny, racism, and rape.

    Diversity is Not Enough

    The movie’s casting is diverse, and the narrative attempts to be inclusive in its portrayal of feminism. Poehler’s character, main character Vivian’s mother, acknowledges that her own experiences of adolescent and young adult feminist movements in…

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  2. Assassin’s Creed III and the delicate equilibrium

    I originally wrote this in March and have only now gotten around to publishing it. Go me.

    I’ve already discussed my mad love for the Mass Effect series, so now let’s talk about another series that captured my fairweather gaming heart: Assassin’s Creed. I can’t remember whether I got the original before or after I tried Mass Effect, but those were the first two games I played all the way through when I bought my Xbox 360. And, like the other series, I’ve followed Assassin’s Creed through its various sequels. Back in January, I finished playing Assassin’s Creed III after wrestling with whether to continue it at all. It occurred to me that I have never really set down my thoughts about these games. So, before I pan that one, let me celebrate its predecessors.

    How These Games Earned My Loyalty

    I appreciated the stealth mechanic of Assassin’s Creed, as well as its devotion to sneaking up behind people and stabbing them. Even the original game’s very repetitive and linear storyline, as well as its flat frame story, couldn’t rob me of the enjoyment of hitting that button and sending the game’s world spiralling into chaos,…

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  3. Torchwood Days Two and Three

    Major spoilers ahead.

    Torchwood Day Two was even better than Day One, and so far Day Three has topped both of those combined. Davies successfully manages to raise the stakes in each successive episode, which can only mean a massive climax on Friday night. I can't wait!

    Day Two was definitely Gwen and Ianto's moment to shine. Jack blew up at the end of Day One, so with him (temporarily) out of the picture, Gwen and Ianto are on their own and on the run. Gwen and her husband, Rhys, stowaway on a potato truck on its way to London. There, they meet up with Lois Habiba, a new girl in the Home Office who's starting to wonder for which side she's working. With a little help from her, they go off to rescue Captain Jack, only to find that he's been imprisoned in a block of concrete.

    Cue Ianto! He decides to steal the entire concrete cell with some heavy machinery conveniently left behind by the people who poured the concrete. Oh, and Gwen blows up the concrete mixer to cover their escape. They toss the concrete block off a cliff, and Jack emerges ... naked, of course.

    We…

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  4. Torchwood Day One and Doctor Who Pics!

    Monday signalled the beginning of a week of mass mayhem, Scotland versus England humour, and alien threats to the security of our planet. Yes, I'm talking about the American and Canadian premiere of season 3 of Torchwood, aka Torchwood: Children of the Earth. If you've been living under a rock for the past year, this is a five-part miniseries format change to accompany Torchwood's move to BBC One.

    For those of you in Canada who missed the broadcast or who don't get Space, you're in luck! You can watch Torchwood online for up to seven days after it airs on television. Now, the CBC has also been good about making its television shows available online; they've shafted Doctor Who and Torchwood over and over, however, so I'm happy to see them finding a new home on Space. Space will also be showing the Easter Doctor Who special, Planet of the Dead, this Saturday.

    I must confess that I'm not in love with Torchwood the way I'm in love with Doctor Who. I watched the first two seasons sporadically. The only character who really fascinates me is Captain Jack, with his TARDIS-conferred immortality. Beyond that,…

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  5. 30 hours sacrificed to the altar of Mass Effect

    I just finished playing Mass Effect, a Bioware science fiction role-playing game for Xbox 360 (what I played) and now PC. When I bought my Xbox back at Christmas, I knew that Mass Effect was on my short list of Games I Wanted. It had received high praise and excellent reviews; the commercials made it look like the sort of game I would enjoy--I like science fiction, and I like combat as long as the game isn't all combat. So a couple of weeks ago, I bought Mass Effect at about half price on eBay and began playing.

    Many reviewers hailed Mass Effect as the best game of the year. I wouldn't go that far, but then again, I'm not a gamer, and my experience in games this year hasn't been all that much. It is definitely one of the best games I have ever played; however, it does have several weak points that prevent me from enjoying it as much as I would like. I'll cover those later.

    Mass Effect may have the best story of any game this year. As a RPG, you get to play a character and make decisions that affect the story and…

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