Monday, October 30, 2006

The short version

I promise a much much longer version of my journies (not to be confused with Journey, whom I saw share a stage with Def Leppard LIVE at the Hollywood Bowl right before I left, which ROCKED!!) but the short version is, I finally made it back to La with plenty of time to spare before the Halloween party, to show off an awesome costume I made with Maude. If I can figure out how to post pictures (because there was no embedded video of my actions, thank christ) I'll put it up for all to see.

But I learned a few things on this road trip:

1) It takes 27 hours non stop from Memphis to Los Angeles.

2) Driving those 27 straight hours is not the smartest of ideas.

3) Coming off said 27 hours to a house that doesn't contain your bed (or any real bed for that matter) sucks worse than a {Insert disgusting oral sex joke here}.

4) The Departed? Pretty fuckin good. REALLY fuckin good, actually.

5) Trip sure would have been better if I had a travelling companion. (But many thanks to all of you who called or texted or both to keep me awake and relatively sane.)

6) I'm not Chuck Klosterman, but you could have fooled me at times.

7) My old favorite bar, The Winchester, now sucks, as they've remodeled, accepted kareoke, banned smoking, and taken away the section of the bar where I carved my name. But they kept my 11 Up high score, so I can forgive them. For now...

8) Now that Jersey instituted the no smoking in bars policy, and given that most of my friends have quit smoking, I didn't miss cigarettes at all. And I could smell things again! Something to ponder.

9) I came up with an AWESOME new script idea, hopefully I can get paid for it. Too bad I can't stand the sound of my voice on my recorder to listen to what I came up with. C'est la vie.

10) Becca RULES!!! Not only did we enjoy having a little fun at my classmate's expense (She's either my common-law wife, or my anarchic "non-wife" who doesn't believe in marriage, but either way is 2 weeks pregnant with my child), but she went and got me the greatest birthday present EVER: Tickets to Evil Dead The Musical, which happens to be the greatest show I've ever seen. I'll do a full report later, but if you go to Ain't It Cool, you can find a rave review that pretty much sums up what I would say about it.

11) Jersey's got the greatest pizza. Deal with it.

12) We're not gonna talk about the Mets yet.

Those are small observations. The longer version will come in various pieces as soon as I get settled into the new apartment, which we officially move into on Wednesday. Once that dust settles, I'll get back on the writing train and may even scrounge up some cash to see a movie to review. Oh, and I'll also list my entire musical selection for the trip, which I plotted out and kept track of, because I'm a weirdo.

But let's be honest, that's why you love me.

Friday, October 20, 2006

Still alive...

Still alive. Made the drive in one piece, thanks to all who called and kept me sane. I was smart enough to know that when the voices in my head made sense, it was time to pull over. I'll have a full update soon, most likely when I return to LA. There will be many a funny story to tell, and I need the time to make it sound less like Chuck Klosterman as possible.

Anyway, the reunion is tomorrow, so that shall provide hours of entertainment. In addition to the unbelievably bitchin Halloween costume, which I shall try and post a picture of.

Anyway, I'm not gonna lie as to the intoxicated state I happen to be in at the moment. And I'm gonna apologize in advance for any calls and/or texts anyone may get due to this.

Oh, and if anyone feels like calling to entertain me during the drive back, feel free. They are most helpful.

Sunday, October 15, 2006

On the road again...

Yes indeed, in about a half hour, I begin the journey back home to NJ for food folks and fun. And a high school reunion. That should be... interesting.

I'll try and update from the road, provided I can get interenet connections and such. Plus, I have to get my review of Little Children up. Perhaps that will be a little later. (Long story short: It's GOOD)

Wish me luck. And seeing as how mostly only my friends read this blog, I'll give up a PLEASE CALL ME WHILE I'M ON THE ROAD!! Seriously, I'm gonna be mad bored out there. Last time I drove by myself, but Dan was in the car behind me. (although, it will be nice to see what's behind me, as opposed to last time.)

Alright, so all my music is packed and ready (that was an ardous task, and took longer than packing my clothes. And I have about 200 CDs with me. See Deez Nuts), I have all of Rob's stuff to return for him, and I know where my towel is.

Looks like all I have to do is get in the car and start driving.

Later everybody.

Friday, October 13, 2006

Grammer question...

I see this a lot, and I always think it's wrong, but given the incredible frequency with which I see it, I'm starting to think that it MIGHT be right.

Sometimes, I see people write "Should of" or "Would of". Isn't it "Should've" or "Should have"? (Likewise "Would've", etc)

Am I crazy? Did I miss a memo?

Thursday, October 12, 2006

Comment Difficulty

Hey all. My comments section was changed again. Not allowing you to post comments. It's fixed now, and should work. Give it a try!

Rodriguez's Half of Grindhouse - Trailer


Looks pretty badass. Especially Danny Trejo. I wonder if his Machete character is the same as Uncle MAchete from Spy Kids. That would just be plain funny.

Lost - Season 3, Week 2 (spoilers within)

Not a big fan of the Sun/Jin flashbacks, any of them really through all the seasons. It divides too much time between them, and lately, it's kind of the same thing. Jin does horrible things for Sun's father, and he doesn't really like doing them. I get it.

However, these were a bit more interesting, and as always, I'm hoping they contain a bigger payoff.

Speaking of payoffs, however, I gotta say the last five minutes of this episode are top notch. Henry Gale, or Benjamin Linus I guess, dropping his very creepy guard when convincing Jack that the Boston Red Sox won the world series was one of those great little character moments. And the other information he revealed to Jack made me sit up in my chair.

And that chair is a Lay-Z-Boy. And it leans heavily to the right.

I also sat up straight upon Sun's actions on the boat. That was mighty cool. And with Sawyer and Kate's situation. Damn, I love Sawyer. Not in a Julian MacMahon way, though.

I have three problems with Lost thus far this season, mostly minor stuff, but one big thing: (minor ones first)

1) The flashbacks are nowhere near as interesting as what's happening to them all on the island. Not anymore, anyway.

2) Goddamn it, show Mr. Eko!!! (Yes, I realize they'll be in next week's, but still. Last season's opening 2 spent one with Jack and them, and the next with what happened on the boat with Sawyer, Jin and Micahel. You can mix it up, it's ok.

3) (the big one) Is it me, or are there FAR too many commercial breaks? At one point, it felt like Lost was the commercial break, because it was way too short. It's driving me nuts. SEE DEEZ NUTS! It feels weird, and is pretty distracting. Am I just going crazy? Am I getting old and senile? Do I long for the days of yesteryear? Well, that one's a given, obviously. Grrrrr...

On the plus side, one of those commercials was Rico's Wendy's commercial, so it was nice to see him on the small screen.

This part is for T-bone: I'm not being negative towards Lost. I still think it's one of the greatest shows on TV. It's a lot like my review of King Kong last year. I wasn't overly enthusiastic in my writings, but I do quite love it. I nitpick because frankly, that's in the written agreement of writing a blog. I must be snarky and point out flaws. This season is quite kickass, and I'm sure the next 4 episodes will be fine, until the season goes on hiatus to piss us off. Brrrraaaaffffffff!!!!!!

Speaking of segues: TNT ran the Alias episode with Ricky Gervais as the bombmaker tonight. I never saw that one. Damn, Gervais is a great actor.

If anyone feels like discussing last night's Lost, that's what the comments are for.

Tuesday, October 10, 2006

Unemployed Couch Viewings

"An author is a fool who, not content with boring those he lives with, insists on boring future generations."

I thought that amusing and whimsical, and yet all too true.

Anyway, I have some mini-tweeners for y'all today. As I have no real job anymore, I spend a lot of time on my couch, while it's still here, along with our home theater set-up. So, I have a lot of films to watch and all the time in the world to do just that. If only I could get paid...

Silent Hill
- Missed this one when it came out, although I really wanted to see it. It truly is a 2 hour Tool video, but it's pretty damn cool. I can't tell you what it's about for the life of me, though. I'm still trying to figure it out myself. The film itself is bursting with atmosphere, and visually, it's beautiful. The dude with the pyramid head is badass, and the ending is something straight out of Hellraiser, if the Hellraiser movies were ever given a budget greater than a direct to video series. So very creepy, but even with a grainy, ten minute super-8 scene that's all exposition, I still can't make heads or tails of the flick. Worth checking out, though. It's also one of the best video game adaptations since Super Mario Brothers.

Scary Movie 4
- Movie spoofs have gotten kind of lazy lately. Most of them are too wrapped up in making the joke that they forget about the movie. Scary Movie 4 is no exception. It's full of random, stupid pointless parodies of recent movies, like Brokeback Mountain. It also sort of relies on you having seen The Grudge, The Village, Saw, Million Dollar Baby, and War of the Worlds. Or at least having seen the trailers for said movies. It's a loose pastiche, that manages to somewhat tie together in the loosest of possible ways. And yet, I caught myself laughing out loud at quite a few things. Specifically, Craig Bierko in the War of the Worlds parody. He's genius. Some of his bits fall flat, but damn is he funny. If it's late, and you're in an altered state of mind, and it's on, check it out. There are a lot worse things out there.

The Lake House- Fuck y'all, I really liked it.

Edmond- Here's a strange movie. It's directed by Stuart Gordon, who brought us Re-animator and my personal favorite Fortress. (The one with the intestinators!). But it's not a horror film, or even a psychological thriller. It's straight up strange. It's based on a play by David Mamet, who adapted the script as well. It stars William H. Macy as Edmond (title). He begins the movie by ending his marriage with his wife, then he goes on a quest through the city (I think it was supposed to be New York, but it was clearly LA, if you know the geography of the town) searching for sexual satisfaction he can not gain from his wife. It's very strange, and it goes places most movies wouldn't. But it's got a killer Macy performance, and decent supporting turns from most of the cast. (Mena Suvari wasn't all that good, but Julia Stiles didn't annoy me too much). It is pretty weird, though. Especially Edmond's choices leading to the finale.

Hard Candy
- Holy crap, this movie is awesome. Right now, it's on par with Proposition for my favorite flick of the year. It's intense, and twisted as hell, but I never took my eyes off the screen. I'm pissed I missed this one in theaters. What's fascinating about the film is that it's essentially a 2 person film. It's the story of Hayley (Ellen Page) and Jeff (Patrick Wilson). Jeff is a photographer and internet predator, trolling chat rooms trying to ensnare teen girls. Hayley is his latest victim. Or is she?!?!? I highly reccommend this film. It's shot beautifully, cut well, and acted perfectly. Ellen Page is brilliant as Hayley, and you can't take your eyes off her. Completely different from her role as Kitty Pryde in X3: Hey We Tried. And she's 19, not 14, so you can't feel bad for finding her slightly attractive, despite the pedophile theme of the film. Patrick Wilson is also quite good, as you never quite know if he is indeed responsible for touching young girls in inappropriate ways. Goddamn this is one good movie.

I also caught Thank You For Smoking (you can read my original review over at moviesonline), Cars, and aforementioned Proposition. Smoking and Cars are being evaluated for their Home Theater potential, and thus will not be written about here, for fear of not receiving a check from the lovely folk at the magazine. Do yourself a favor and pick up a Home Theater Magazine. Even if you don't have a home theater. The more you read it, the more reviews I get. And lord knows I need the rent money.

Until next time. Next time being tomorrow when I have even less to do.

PS- It should also be noted that I discovered our On Demand capabilities, and for reasons I can not, repeat NOT, explain I watched Battlefield Earth. In a surprising move, it should be noted that this choice was a completely sober one, baffling us all.

Monday, October 09, 2006

Is Zach Snyder the greatest director out there?

At least of the current crop of young turks. Sure he's only officially made two movies, and only one of them has been released. But that movie was the remake of Dawn of the Dead. I know some people who hate this movie with a passion solely because it called itself Dawn of the Dead, feeling it a betrayal of the original. Oddly enough, those people would love the movie (and they've said this to me) if it were named something else.

Fact is, those people are idiots. Recently, I happened upon Dawn and realized how damn brilliant the film is. Very little is wasted. And it has one of the greatest openings of a movie in all time. Try and prove me wrong. Go ahead.

That's right, you can't.

So, nearly three years later, we're still wondering what's gonna happen with Zach Snyder.

He went the Sin City route and made a Frank Miller adaptation, in digital environments.

It's "300"

And it will kick you in the junk. Hard.

And just to sweeten Snyder's deal with us, he's taking on Watchmen. And recent reports of what he has in mind sound all kinds of hot rod.

Sunday, October 08, 2006

I don't know what to make of this...

Someone has too much free time on their hands...

... and yet I'm pissed I didn't think of it first.

Sheer Genius

I finally saw a movie in the theaters this weekend. I couldn't believe it. After many false starts, I found myself sitting down in the Burbank Town Centre AMC 8. Not bad, but not that great either. But it didn't matter, because what was unspooled before me was pure and utter brilliance.

I speak of Jackass Number Two.

Much like "Snakes on a Plane", you pretty much know if Jackass the second is the movie for you. If you don't like seeing grown men doing some of the more brilliant yet unbelievably dumb things ever captured on celluloid (or digital video then transferred to celluloid, only to return to a digital format in about 4 months). If human feces and vomit are not your viscera of choice, go on and see something with ponies in it. (Although with the horse semen drank in this film, ponies might be in short supply).

Yeah, you read that properly.

There's no plot, it's just stupid pranks, usually meant to torture one another for everyone's amusement. And for ones that don't work so well, or produce far too much vomit, all you have to do is wait a few minutes, and something brilliant will come along. My personal favorite stunts involved the note left for the Jackass guys in the hotel room, the beehive limo complete with marbles, the mine, the card thrower,the anaconda ball pit, and the bungee jump. There are far too many stunts, and everything I try to recall, I just wind up laughing harder. Seriously, I laughed so hard in this movie I burst a teste.

And this is the exact kind of movie that would take that blurb and run it with pride.

The sheer genius of the picture comes from the boys themselves. They're so damn charismatic, that you want them to continue doing these things to themselves for your benefit. The fact that they have top the last stunt in sheer ridiculousness (or audacity, or top it in sheer disgust) proves that there's a little more going on in their heads then it appears. Most of it hidden behind the shit eating grin of Bam Margera, who's never one to turn down torturing his friends and loved ones. (His family actually gets off a little easy this time around). Some of the one-upmanship to exact revenge on Margera is brilliant. Or, as Ryan Dunn puts it after branding Margera (I'll leave it to your imagination what was branded and where) "It was funny."

Of course, the genius could come from that when in doubt, you can hit someone in the balls. Pure comedy.

But the very fact that Steve-O is not only willing, but PROUD AS HELL, to place a leech on his eyeball deserves at least a nomination for the Nobel.

UPDATE: Sadly, Steve-O did NOT win the Nobel. I found this to be a serendipitous moment.

Friday, October 06, 2006

Let us take a moment...

And remember fondly upon the joys of the Regency $2 dollar theater in North Hollywood. It was right across the street from my doctor's office (which is right next door to a strip club, I love my HMO), and it wasn't a bad place to catch a movie. Not at all. Popcorn was tasty, the seats were... alright. But the projection and sound was fine. Better than some I've seen out here. (cough*AMC*cough). And it was $3. I never mind paying $3 for 3 Fast 3 Furious or Aeon Flux.

But now...

It's gone.

Well, it's moved to West Hollywood, which is too damn far.

Goodbye Regency! You shall be missed.

Thursday, October 05, 2006

2 Brief Bits of TV last night also worth mentioning

1) Ok, so Nip/Tuck is one moving sculpture away from becoming The Devil's Advocate, especially these past two seasons, but I'll be damned if it didn't make me do something I never thought I would say/do ever again: It made me actually like Rosie O'Donnell. She wasn't annoying. She was playing a good character. And she was actually funny as hell. Not since Another Stakeout did I think I could ever feel this way again. Thank you Rosie, for not becoming completely annoying. Wow, first the Joan Rivers episodes, and now Rosie O Donnell.

This in no way means that I will ever watch the View.

2) That glorious 2nd inning blunder where the 3rd base coach waved both runners into being tagged at home. Final score Mets 6, Dodgers 5.

We play again tonight at 5PM (PST)

That's right. I'm totally Hollywood now. I use Pacific Standard time.

(Pacific Standard Time Deez NUTS!!!!)

LOST is back on the air. (Spoilers abound)

Alright, this is goin out to my faithful readers who love Lost, and who want to discuss it. I tried this last year, towards the end, but y'all didn't keep up with it. I'm looking in an Eastwardly direction, towards the NJ/NY area.

Anyway, last night, Lost began the third season. In a ballsy move, totally unprecedented in the series up to this point, they really didn't answer any questions. They showed a whole bunch of cool stuff, and they kind of hinted at things here and there, but it's still a little angering. Still no explanation as to why it's the three of them captured (and why Hurley's let go), or why they're in their respective "cages" if you will. (Although the Sawyer bit was kind of neat, in a Rube Goldberg induced kinda way).

The episode set up a lot of good things, and it truly was an engrossing hour of television, even if it felt like a half hour of it was devoted to commercials. I'm hoping they keep up the intrigue but answer some more stuff. And I'm sure, as someone back east might be quick to point out, there are a lot of details and clues hidden within frames that I just can't see because I have yet to get into the Tivo revolution, and our video tape is kind of on it's last legs, making pausing and studying rather difficult. Regardless, I like the "Hydra" base camp a lot. They gave off a few hints as to the "where did this come from" aspect of the show. And while they don't give the broader answer, the immediate will suffice provided that the show doesn't pull the Twin Peaks.

Please, let us discuss theories below.

Wednesday, October 04, 2006

When it rains it pours

This has not exactly been the greatest of times. I apologize for not writing any movie reviews, but aside from that Science of Sleep review I keep meaning to finish writing,I haven't seen any movies. It's frightening. I don't know what's happened to me. I used to love going to the movies. I mean, I still do love going to the movies, I just haven't gone lately. It's frightening.

But lately, it's been kind of crazy with my job ending and the search for a new apartment. On top of which this puts a wrench into my enjoying unemployment and taking a bitchin road trip across the country, going back home to visit my friends & family. And my lil buddy Simon, who probably has no idea who I am anymore. And I gotta find a new job, so I can afford the move, or at least afford the rent increase. And I don't really have the greatest credit in the world, and those damn lottery tickets aren't paying off.

My morning is at a low, and then I have to go and read this.