The Suggestion Box #78: Massive Swords, and Horror Descents, and Egyptian Gods, Oh My!

Wondering what to do with your upcoming free time? Good thing we have some suggestions for what you should be watching, playing, reading, listening to, etc.

Ben’s Movie Pick: Final Fantasy VII: Advent Children (Complete)

“To those who love this world and knew friendly company therein: This Reunion is for you.”

Those words, which are the first thing you see when you start up Advent Children, make me smile every time I watch it. As someone who has loved Final Fantasy VII for the vast majority of his life, I truly appreciate that this movie was made for me and everyone else who grew to care for the world and characters of my all-time favorite video game. It truly was made for FFVII fans by FFVII fans, and that’s exactly how something like this should be developed. While it admittedly suffers from some wonky storytelling, hit-and-miss voice acting, and pushing a few beloved party members to the background, Advent Children is a fun, memorable, and worthwhile entry into the Compilation of FFVII. The new character designs are great, the action sequences range from awesome to mind-blowing, the soundtrack gives me literal chills, and the last 45 minutes are fan-freaking-tastic. Even if Advent Children doesn’t match the insane level of overall quality of the original game Crisis Core or Remake, it’s still good enough that I’m happy to revisit it every year or so.

Lauren’s TV Pick: Moon Knight Knowing nothing about the comic book character Moon Knight heading into the show, my initial reaction was “another Steve!?” My second, much more pertinent reaction was “this show is bonkers, and I kinda love it.” For those like me who didn’t know, Moon Knight is a vigilante who doles out punishment to evildoers in the name of the Egyptian god Khonshu, opening up a whole new pantheon to the Marvel universe that had me itching to rewatch The Mummy. I’m going to keep things vague beyond that to not spoil anything about the show’s exploration of Steven’s ever evolving understanding of his actual reality, just know it’s far from sunshine and rainbow bridges for him. In other words, come for the mythology and Oscar Isaac doing an adorable British accent, stay for the fantastic visuals and editing that punctuate both the nightmarish revelations and out of sync dichotomies that provide a far more interesting conflict than the actual bad guy (sorry Ethan Hawke), as well as the egregious damage inflicted by the psychological trauma at the heart of it all.

Ben’s Video Game Pick: The Dark Pictures Anthology: House of Ashes The penultimate episode of The Dark Pictures Anthology‘s first season, House of Ashes, is undoubtedly my favorite so far. Like the others, it’s essentially a playable horror movie, one where your choices and actions change the story and fate of its central characters. After a short and scary prologue, you are given control of a group of United States military officials, marines, and one Iraqi soldier, who quickly find themselves trapped in a cavern; one not only filled with the ruins of an ancient civilization, but something far more sinister waiting in the deep, deep darkness that was lost to time. The game does a terrific job keeping the exact details of that malevolent force obscured (until a wonderfully batshit crazy reveal), which helped keep me invested during the story’s few slower moments. Better yet, most of the choices I made felt impactful. The vocal/motion capture cast was pretty entertaining too, giving believability to some of the most complex characters I’ve seen from developer Supermassive Games thus far. I wouldn’t put House of Ashes in the same tier of interactive drama as Until Dawn, but I would still recommend the former to anyone who enjoyed the latter.

So what do you think about these picks? What content did we miss over the past two weeks while we were spending time with these? Be sure to leave a comment below letting us know about everything (both current and simply new to you) you’ve been consuming lately!

And while you’re here, be sure to check some of the site’s other recent content:

  • Middle of the Row: The Podcast episodes on Malignant and flashing back to 2012’s Goon.

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