Elizabeth Tai

Scribbles about reading, writing and publishing in the digital era

By

Free science fiction and fantasy short stories at Tor.com

Like any Malaysian, I like free stuff, and nothing gives me more pleasure than finding legitimate sources of free, high-quality fiction.

Today’s discovery: Tor.com’s excellent free short stories archive. They are mostly science fiction, epic fantasy, urban fantasy, steampunk, paranormal romance and space opera stuff. The authors are some of the best in the science fiction and fantasy genre: Gene Wolf, Brian Sanderson, John Scalzi, Harry Turtledove and Elizabeth Bear.

Love speculative fiction? Then this is the place to visit.

By

Dragon Wars

dwar.jpgOkay, seriously, big hit in South Korea or not, the person who wrote the script has to be shot, quartered and burnt. I thought I’ve heard some bad scripts, but D-Wars has got to be the absolutely worst script I’ve ever had the misfortune of listening to/watching.

I mean, how badly can you mess up a story about dragons attacking Los Angeles, right? Apparently, a lot of ways.

It’s not that the characters say stupid things (They do. A lot), but what gets my goat is how illogical their actions are. Take this example: At the start of the movie our heroine is locked up in the hospital. For what? Because she is being quarantined for having a weird mark on her shoulder. Okay! Maybe I’m no expert, and the only thing I know about hospital policy is from what I see on House and Grey’s Anatomy, but hospitals in the sane world do not quarantine people just because they have a strange birthmark. And even if it was a cause for concern, she can’t be held against her will like some stark raving lunatic who will go on a killing spree unless locked behind bars.

And then there’s this journalist (Jason Behr, why oh why did you say yes to this role)? And I know a good deal about being one, so I have to shake him and ask him how in the world does he think a 19-year-old girl named Sarah has anything to do with a crater in Los Angeles? Oh wait, based on some tale an old geezer tells him. Great investigative journailsm, man.

It’s downright stupid.

I truly should’ve listened to the reviewers who poured oil and lit the movie on fire and called it a disaster. I honestly thought that I could overlook its flaws and just enjoy the dragon ride. I mean, the trailer looked good and a New York Times reviewer even liked it. Plus, I love seeing cities destroyed in a grand way. But what if you can’t even make it that far?

Yes, I gave up quarter way because it was so awful I couldn’t torture my brain cells any further. The only other show I’ve done that is the godawful Earthsea miniseries. (I lasted 5 minutes with that one. With this … okay, I lasted 20. I wanted to see dragons, okay?)

Really. If you like dragons and can bear the shitty dialogue and plot, go ahead. Or else, and I can’t emphasise this strongly enough: Avoid at all costs!

(Rating: 0.5. At least the dragons looked interesting)