Superhuman mutant with the power to teleport. When he teleports he leaves black smoke and the scent of brimstone behind. Nightcrawler is also deformed and is covered in black fur and has three nimble digits on each hand, he is extremely agile, one of the Uncanny X-Men.

A charachter in the marvel universe:

Name: Nightcrawler
Real name: Kurt Wagner
Height: 5'9
Weight: 145Lbs
First Appearance: Giantsize X-men # 1, May 1975
Known Powers: Teleportation, Wall Crawling, Invisibility While Hiding In Shadows (the power everyone always forgets about)

Quick Bio: He was born in Germany and abandoned by his mother (a.k.a. Mystique). He worked as a circus freak for some time. Then he joined the X-Men. He now leads Excalibur which is basicaly a British extension of the X-Men.

A character in the X-Men Universe. In addition, a character that is playable in the widely acclaimed X-Men arcade game. Is blue, has yellow eyes, and of course, smells like sulfur when he uses his power.
Kurt Wagner is the son of the mutant Mystique, half brother of the now dead Graydon Creed. When he was born in Germany, his mother left him with gypsy parents, his foster mother was Margali Szardos, and he grew up by the side of Amanda Sefton, the woman that would be his girlfriend in coming years. Later, he joined a circus thanks to his acrobatic abilities and became a star. However, when the circus went to Berlin, the people of the town tried to kill him. Charles Xavier, who was forming the New X-Men, saved him. He joined the team, forging many friendships there, mostly with Wolverine, Colossus, and Kitty Pryde. When Storm lost her powers, Kurt was designated the leader of the X-Men, even if for a short time. He just left when was severely injured in a battle against the Marauders. These injuries damaged his teleportation powers, but that did not stop him to save Rachel Summers, forming the Excalibur, after his fellow X-Men "died" in Texas. He stayed with the team, and came to lead it. Kurt was a brilliant leader and friend, making him one of the greatest assets to Excalibur. However, as all good things do, they must end. As Captain Britain and Meggan married, Shadowcat, Colossus and Kurt began to have wishes of going back to America. As the group disbanded, Nightcrawler returned to the X-Men and, after a battle with Cerebro, is once again a member of his original group.

Sigh, you city people. X-men indeed.

Nightcrawlers are earthworms, Lumbricus terrestris to be exact. They are called nightcrawlers because they rise from their burrows to lay on the surface at night, in the moist, cool air. They are central to a robust ecosystem, providing enhanced soil structures more habitable to plant growth, and enhance nutrient recycling. They are a foodsource for several animals such as robin's, moles and hedgehogs.

Here's the real beauty of the nightcrawler - They are a big, slimy, fat, muscular worm that fits perfectly on a fishing hook. Bass, bluegill, crappy and catfish love them. My greatest fishing successes in freshwater have came from using nightcrawlers as bait.

To catch nightcrawlers, go out into your yard at night with a flashlight. Pan the flashlight over the ground surface, looking for the reflection of earthworm slime. When you spot a healthy looking specimen, approach with all the Kung-fu stealth and quiet you can muster. Nightcrawlers can sense the vibration of approaching footsteps with surprising accuracy, and will disappear into their holes if they feel you coming. If you make a mistake and the nightcrawlers all vanish, just move to a different part of the yard and continue your worm harvest. Return later, and the nightcrawlers will probably be back laying on the surface.

When you get within grabbing distance, reach out quickly and snag the nightcrawler in the palm of your hand. Get as firm a grip as your stomach can handle, because they are very slippery. Now apply firm but gentle pressure upward to ease the nightcrawler out of it's hole, without breaking the worm in half.

Keep your nightcrawlers in a styrofoam bait bucket with some dirt and wet leaves. Make sure you put them in a cool shady place. If you don't have a cool, shady place, then put them in your refrigerator (just don't freeze them).

I've always liked Nightcrawler (the X-man, not the worm... not that I have anything against worms, mind you), especially what was done with him in the early days of Excalibur.

He's a funny colour and a funny shape, he has yellow eyes, pointy ears and a pointy tail. Best of all, he appears and disappears with the smell of brimstone; you really can't blame people for thinking he's satanic.

Yet he only wanted to be a hero, just like in the movies. So he loved the circus, where his freakish nature added to his fame rather then detract from it. He loves the adoration of the crowd, but was still never really accepted by them. Then the meets the X-men, a bunch of comic book stuff ensues, he realizes what it really means to be a hero, and joins the X-men to be a hero in practice as well as name.

Is he suddenly accepted and loved by his fellow men? No, they still look at him as a satanic freak, and a mutant now to boot. When the X-men die (or so he thinks), he begins to realize being a hero is harder then he thought. Yet he doesn't give up (aside from a brief self-destructive binge), forms a new team, and a lot more comic book stuff happens.

Standard Marvel fare, yes, but I'm a sucker for this sort of character. Most people with Nightcrawler's background would have been tempted to turn villainous (though he is kinda villous... sorry, bad botony joke); constantly ostracized and hunted by humanity, they would finally turn on their tormentors (and who can really blame them?). Yet Nightcrawler is one of the good guys, simply because Nightcrawler really wants to be one of the good guys. He's determined to be a hero, even if the people he saves won't look him in the eye afterwards (and might come after him with pitchforks and torches, given the chance). Best of all, he's usually pretty cheerful about it, ready with a witty comeback when insulted or degraded.

Nightcrawler may have been my favorite film this year. Jake Gyllenhaal, while not always the most flawless actor, seems to have a knack for selecting nuanced scripts (see Zodiac, Enemy, Donnie Darko—all movies with a “meta” element). The term nuanced however, would not be at all the way to describe this movie. At times the movie’s gore and action feels heavy handed but never absentmindedly so. All moving parts—actors, direction, and story—know exactly where they’re heading from the start, and the payoff is worth the effect.

Mr. Gyllenhaal nails his role as Louis Bloom, an ambitious, constantly wide-eyed “nightcrawler.” Gyllenhaal’s performance has drawn repeated comparison to DeNiro in Taxi Driver, but while the two roles share similarities, I thought Bloom’s character was fundamentally different in that he does end up fitting in to some extent. And it’s Bloom’s success that makes the movie such clever social commentary—the audience can’t help but to be impressed by Bloom’s trajectory, even if it comes at the expense of his lackey or from his total disregard of social decency. At one point, Bloom’s underling confides in him that Bloom “doesn't get people,” setting up the line of the movie when Gyllenhaal chillingly reveals, “it’s not that I don’t get people, it’s that I just don’t like them.”

Directed and written by Dan Gilroy.

Spoilers below!

Nightcrawler is a film directed and written by Dan Gilroy and starring Jake Gyllenhaal and Renee Russo (who, incidentally, is married to Dan Gilroy), for the most part. It was released October 31, 2014, in the USA. Its plot concerns Louis Bloom (Jake Gyllenhaal), a shiftless young man trying to find work wherever he can. He stumbles on a crime scene and becomes fascinated with the work of independent crime scene videographers. He decides to become one himself, and before long he's one of the most successful shooters in the trade, even surpassing his rival Joe Loder (Bill Paxton). The footage he films is sold to a lowly-rated TV news channel, KWLA, run by Nina Romina (Rene Russo), at first for a pittance, and within a year up to the point where he can afford to buy a new, fast sports car and top-of-the-line recording equipment.

As Bloom rises to the top of the grim world of crime scene videography, he becomes a creepy, amoral automaton. His eyes begin to reflect the carnage he has seen. The film depicts his rise to the top and, consequently, the erosion of his personality and morals. By the end of the film, he's arriving at crime scenes before the police do and when he becomes bored with that, he takes to withholding crimes he recorded from the police before their arrival in his quest for who will pay the most money for the footage. He arranges for Loder to be in a crippling car accident by loosening the lug nuts on his van; Loder survives but the implication is that he barely does. Bloom is briefly reprimanded by the police near the end, but for all the morally ambiguous behavior he exhibited while doing his job, he doesn't even really get a slap on the wrist.

The film ends with Bloom starting his own news footage company and even has a few employees to extend his reach.

This film, such as it is, could have been so much better. Gyllenhaal plays his character as a creepy, stalker-ish, amoral man willing to lie, cheat and steal to succeed. Russo is alright as the frazzled news director of KWLA, and other than those two characters, Paxton and Rick Garcia (playing a character with the same name) as Bloom's hired assistant are the only other characters with much in the way of dialog and screen-time. There are a lot of actual news industry people making cameo appearances as themselves—Kent Shocknek, Pat Harvey, Sharon Tay and Bill Steward, among others, all of whom are well-known in the Los Angeles TV news industry appear but none for more than a few seconds.

My girlfriend and I watched this film after seeing it in the New Releases section on Netflix. We both found it pretty underwhelming. For a crime drama that takes place almost entirely at night, its lack of a foreboding atmosphere and a definitive goal make it somewhat confusing and ultimately unfulfilling. If you want to see Jake Gyllenhaal really shine in a crime drama, see 2012's End of Watch, which is a much better crime drama with real direction and outstanding performances, all things Nightcrawler lacks. Another crime drama, 2007's Zodiac, showcases his talent for this sort of role, but it's just not visible here.

The users of the IMDB rate this a surprisingly high 7.9 out of 10.0 (at the time of writing); I rated it a 6.0, and that's being generous. Gyllenhaal as the amoral videographer is grudgingly interesting to watch as he's constantly flipping between a condescending attitude towards all others and placing himself into real danger while hunting for new stories to sell. His character is really unlikable here and frankly, I'm surprised he took the roll. I mean, I don't even remember this movie being released to theatres and I'd bet the producers didn't make their money back (whoops, I'm wrong here—see below). Additionally, there are so many continuity goofs and plot holes that conflict with real life I'm surprised it was released at all. Bloom is constantly breaking the law by contaminating/invading crime scenes, is constantly driving recklessly on his way to the crime of the minute, and he treats his assistant (Garcia) like shit.

I wouldn't recommend this movie to anyone other than people obsessed with the subject or any of the people appearing in it, and even then, I'd proceed cautiously. There are much better ways to spend two hours, and there are much better Jake Gyllenhaal movies to watch. So if you, too, have noticed this film displayed prominently on the Netflix main screen, I kindly recommend you skip it. In the end, it's just stupid and, according to the IMDB message board for this film, nothing like real-life crime scene photographers or videographers, even though Gyllenhaal trained with real-life people who make it their profession.

Almost the entire cast is unknown. Here are the few actors with prominent roles:

Nightcrawler had a budget of $8 million USD and managed to rake in $38.6 million USD worldwide, so unlike my previous assumption (above), it made its money back and even turned a profit, almost certainly driven by Gyllenhaal's appearance. Without him, I think this would have been straight to video or straight to Netflix. Yep, it's really that bland and uninteresting. If I had $8 million, ... well, let's just say I wouldn't use it to make a silly, unregarded film like this.

Recommendation: Avoid!


I was going to try to write this review for Brevity Quest 15 but I found that I had too much to say about it to qualify. I went over the limit by about 700 words. Oh well. Maybe next time.

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