Monday, December 31, 2007

furthering advances in streamlining political debate

torture - hot button issue
illegal immigrants - hot button issue

I'm all for condensing distracting hot button issues to get them out of the way. So let's propose the candidates argue over water-boarding for illegal immigrants, and kill two birds with one stone.

Personally, I think boogie boarding for illegal immigrants would take care of the whole problem.

Friday, December 28, 2007

Holiday picks

Christmas Break is almost over - sniff. Saw several movies over the break. Some good, some not so good. Mostly not so good. Even the best movie wasn't great.

The Best movie: Hot Rod with Andy Samberg. Andy (Dick in a Box) Samberg plays a slacker 20 something who is obsessed with stunts. Specifically This movie could have been awesome, but they played it a little safe, and it felt like the studios were trying to force proven formula. Case in point - Hot Rod's crew are all nerds, so you see a lot of Napoleon Dynamite-esque acts of brazen foolishness. Who'se wasted in this movie? Will Arnett. They knew enough to cast him as the asshole boyfriend, but not enough to give him more screen time. Sissy Spacek play Hot Rod's Mom, but I'm not into ironic casting for its own sake - she didn't really do much in the role. Who isn't wasted? Ian McShane (Al Swearengen from Deadwood) as Hot Rod's stepfather. He had some great scenes, and the movie's story winds up showing a pretty nuanced relationship between Samberg and McShane. I think that if Samberg gets more control and experience, he could make a great comedy, this one was simply pretty good. Of course, when you are dying to see a comedy you haven't already seen, sometimes a "pretty good" is shelter from the storm. There are a few moments where you get to see Samberg's unique comedic talents, which I think maybe will become more as a producer. - see this bit from Hot Rod that made it to youtube.

Worst Movie? Shooter with Mark Wahlberg. Priceless moment from Shooter: Jade and I loved one scene. Wahlberg has is holed up in some room with his woman - I think its a hotel room or his girlfriend's bedroom, he's set up as an infirmary. To knock himself out so she can remove a bullet and sew him up? He does a whippit from a whipped cream can. Please trust me when I say there isn't enough nitrous in a can of whipped cream to knock you out for 3 seconds, much less the duration of an operation performed by an amateur.

Dumb deriative crab. Tom Berenger's Sniper meets Damon's Jason Bourne trilogy. Quality level has parity with the former. Horrible, horrible dialogue. Mark Wahlberg is capable of great performances, but I think he needs a strong director. This was approaching David Hasslehoff levels of over-acting. Plot - totally predictable. You could tell the role and fate of every character within seconds of their appearance on the camera. The actress who played Wahlberg's love interest, Kate Mara, was horrible - her career I hope is almost over. Also horrible? Danny Glover. Ever since I saw him in SAW, I realized he would do anything for a little coin. Must be true here. I see nothing on the web to indicate he had a stroke, but his performance suggested otherwise. He was lazily slurring his words, and really coasting. Just a crap movie.

Monday, December 24, 2007

liberal bias rant

Say what you want about the democrats... but at least they have a handful of presidential hopefuls who don't suck. I mean, you can argue they aren't awesome, but most of the main guys (and lady) don't suck. I have my own primary vote to cast, but I really wouldn't be upset by any of the frontrunners winning. The republicans, on the other hand. I mean come on, politics aside, these guys are just so lame. Guiliani? The guy is a philandering shitheel. Romney? Maybe its because I'm from Mass, and I don't like how he talked about the state after his tenure. Or maybe it's because he looks like Eddie Munster, all grown up with bronzer. Or, maybe its because he exaggerates pathologically. McCain, I actually liked in the last couple of elections. He's getting less sucky, but his wacko comments from the spring and summer still are ringing in my ears. Huckabee? Don't get me started - I mean if we are going to elect him, let's just put a steeple on the white house. Give the Christian Right what they really want. Fred Thompson? That would be so sweet in a Governator, Jesse Ventura sort of way. Only with those guys, they represent(ed) places where I was not a constituent. I really don't want to vote for the most ironic candidate. And then there's some other dudes running. I feel like the republican party is silently waiting, and hoping for their real candidate to arrive.

stunning revelation

Watching It's A Wonderful Life (Part of the fascist xmastime regime) - and I ran up to put on the record how awful the editing is. I discover via IMDB that William Hornbeck did the editing, and his work on the film was nominated for an academy award.

This blows my mind. Seriously - my brain is saying "don't taze me, bro" to this piece of news. The movie has so many unnecessary short shots, and awkward jumps. There's a scene with George and Mary on the bed. They share a kiss, and mid-kiss, it cuts to the same shot, only they are done kissing, and the angle is slightly different. And once you notice this about the movie, you can't even watch it normally anymore, because you are waiting to find that kind of film chopping in almost every scene. And there are weirder shots, that make you wonder how somebody made a conscious decision to present the film in that manner. I'm not knocking the treacly and bizarre story-line and its unabashed anti-establishment messages - that would be to easy. Just from a purely technical aspect of execution, this film is a failure. I get that some of the "special effects" were probably ground breaking at the time, but when you can't present a normal shot of two people speaking in a room, you shouldn't be getting nominations for the fancy stuff.

Friday, December 21, 2007

Hip hop round up

Getting ready to endure christmas - at least I sowed up shopping way back. Posting some hip hop finds.

New Stuff:

Wu-Tang: 8 Diagrams. Pretty hot. RZA gets pretty funky with the production. Meth is pretty hot, as is Masta Killah and the GZA. Would have liked to hear more Ghost. Check out "Wolves" (featuring George Clinton no less) and "Take it Back". That, and where the hell did RZA dig up Sunny Valentine. I thought that dude was on the Bar mitzvah circuit. Shows what I know - and that guy can still belt out some tunes. Nice of them to Eulogize O' Dirty Bastard. Have to say, as far down as he fell musically before he died, Return to the 36 Chambers is still pretty awesome. Dirt Dawg was right - there truly was no father to his style.

Ghostface: Big Doe Rehab. I actually didn't like this that much on first listen, but I'm warming up to it. The problem is I'm an ardent Ghost fan, so I want everything to be awesome. The bonus track with High School All-Stars sucks, but everything else is pretty tight. I think the Fishscale / More Fish/ Big Doe direction has run its course, and we need to hear him mix it up on his next project. Not sure how I feel about the production here. On one hand, there are some great samples - on the other hand, its a little too polished, and the source material a little too obvious. Get some Ray Ayers in there. Check out Yolanda's House, and Paisley Darts, and you'll smell what the Ghost is cookin'. I have to say the Rythym Roots All Stars throw down some awesome cuban music to mix up the soul influences, but ghost doesn't rap to them - they are just interludes. I would have actually really liked to hear Ghost spit rhymes over them the whole album. That would be tight. Too bad he doesn't read my lame-ass blog. I heard he is actually touring with them.

Old Stuff I hadn't caught before:

Redman: Red Gone Wild. Redman is still making music? Good thing. Classic Red. Much better than his pervious Malpractice album. Nothing surprising, but consistent Brick City hip hop. It's like Doc's da name 2000, only with better production. Sidenote - if you haven't listened to Blackout! in a while, toss that disc in the CD player. Meth and Red maybe made the best duet album since Jimmy Smith and Wes Montgomery flipped the jazz script on The Dynamic Duo.

213: The Hard Way. For years, I waited to hear the album by Snoops original group. And when it finally came out, I missed it. Argh. Well I finally caught up with Snoop, Nate Dogg and Warren G. Man, this album plays like an homage to old school G-Funk. You know how Warren G's flow was tight, but he was just a little too dorky? Well, Warren's a little harder, Snoop's a little softer, and Nate Dogg is still the muthafuckin May-an belting out gansta R&B. I think someday, Nate's gonna get his due. These days R&B singers who spit profane background tunes are a dime a dozen, even dragging R. Kelly into the biz. But as far as I know, Nate Dogg invented gangsta R&B. He's the original don dotta, and listening to The Hard Way, he's still the number one stunna. That's dumb-ass white-boy speak for saying he's a highly skilled musician.

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

hi blog

blog - I've been neglecting you lately, and I'm sorry. I know you are nothing more than server space with some style sheets draped around you, but you deserve better. I'm sure you'll find my excuse - I've been writing fiction locally - to be incensing, but there it is. I have a goal to finish a second draft of a novel by the end of 2008, so it's been taking up a lot of my time. Blog, I promise, if I get published, I'll take you out for a porterhouse steak.

Also, I've been playing a lot of Call of Duty 4 online (dodges plate flung at head).