Friday, December 31, 2010

Home for the Holidays: Movie Rundown

I have had some downtime since I've been home, so I decided to catch up on my couch-surfing and film-fiestas. The flicks I've seen thus far:

  1. A Christmas Carol (Newest one with Jim Carrey)
  2. Cirque du Freak: The Vampire's Assistant
  3. Fried Green Tomatoes
And here's what I think of them:

Jim Carrey's A Christmas Carol. [4.0 Thumbs Up]
My first reaction was that this movie is not meant for a younger audience, and so far, people have agreed with me. There are some scenes in the film that were so FREAKING freaky that even I jumped a bit. For those who have seen it, you know which ones I'm talking about, but for those who haven't, it's the Ghost of Christmas Yet to Come. Everyone knows this as the creepiest spirit and Robert Zemeckis makes sure we know it and we know it HARD.
My second reaction, however, was pure amazement. It was the intense emotions, the incredible imagery, the masterful scoring, and the beautiful direction that made it a wonderful film. The theme of the movie was conveyed much more greatly than the older version with Scrooge McDuck. Given they are both animated, the 'raw' expressions of the new Scrooge and the heavy imagination of Robert Zemeckis made for a Carol that was fantastic, albeit a more adult-fantastic.
Some other cool things were the voice/character recognition, where the character was adapted to look like the actor lending the voice. The Ghost of Christmas past was the creepiest because it's Carrey doing his creepy voice, but trying to make it a serious piece. So, yeah. Nuff said on that.

All together, I think A Christmas Carol was extremely well done and could become the new "go-to" film for the holidays.

This is going to be brief and skewed for two main reasons. First, I didn't start it from the beginning; Second, I didn't finish it- not because it was horrible, but because I was hungry and got some food. By the time I got back, the movie was over. With that said, this movie is kind of tricky to decipher because there is not a whole lot that enticed me to ever want to see this film on my own dime- yet a small part of me enjoyed this film. Maybe it was the odd variety of freaks presented in the show or the fact that it was a simple film done simply for simple-minded people. If I were to critique it properly, it'd probably end up saying that this film is a waste of time, and since it's already a skewed breakdown, I'll say this:
  • Unknown star supported by a relatively big-time cast = mixed feelings on the acting;
  • Vampire vs Circus Freak subplot= mixed, yet intrigued feelings;
  • John C. Reilly as a bad-ass vampire = not the greatest;
  • Ray Stevenson as a creeped out super-freak= also, not the greatest;
Basically, I was right on with my desire to never want to pay for it, but if it were to ever become a filler show on TBS, then I would be more than welcome to wasting my time zoning out to the horrible special effects and permed-out, gingered-up John C. Reilly

Fried Green Tomatoes. [2.6 High Fives]
I'm not a big fan of chick flicks, especially ones which ask Kathy Bates to look at her own vagina. However, movies that empower people to break out of their conservative and abused lives can't be all that bad. Fried Green Tomatoes is such a movie that I will only watch once and this is because I really...really wanted to take a nap, yet I ended up watching it all. The movie is about Kathy Bates wanting to change her shoddy life situation and in doing so, meets a crazy ole' gal that tells her a story of an intense friendship between two young women, one empowering the other and the other supporting the other, etcetera, etcetera, etcetera. Throughout the movie, Kathy Bates takes these stories close to heart and uses them to fix her life. There's action, mystery, vaginal empowerment, and mini-adventures that tend to have those with softer-hearts tearing up and wishing they had friends like that.

As for me? Well, let's just say it was a movie that I'll watch once willingly. If there were to be a next time, I'd expect much incentive to sit through it.

I'll try to watch something else more exciting, but most of them are holiday favorites [National Lampoons Christmas Vacation, A Christmas Story, etc] and since most EVERYONE on the planet should have seen them by now, I'll just leave it at that. If you haven't seen the holiday necessities, pull your head out and get with it.


Thursday, December 30, 2010

Home for the Holidays: BLACKOUT!

Image of "Blackout" of Warner Bros's Transformers. Desktop image by LordSeacow

Last night was the last night my brother and his girlfriend Stacy were in town for their trip, so we planned out an epic night of food, fun, and fancy. It was going to be truly epic. And because I believe in the rule of 3, I shall say it once more.


The Food was wicked sweet- turkey dinner with mashed potatoes, stuffing, baked apples, broiled broccoli, and rolls. Effffffing tasty, right?!

The Fancy had begun during dinner, with some wine, toots (spirits), and for my sister- Diet Mt. Dew.

The Fun was planned out as such: Scattergories, ApplesToApples, Karaoke, and then some sort of Wii game. In other words, it was going to be much fun- and then-


Oh, preface: Spokane, WA was hit with a storm cell that covered our area with a lot of snow. It started out as the heavy stuff that is perfect for building for a day or so and then moved to the very dry stuff that comes with much colder weather. So, pile that together and you've got the good-stuff that can knock down trees and stuff, in turn, knocking out the power to your house.


At first, no one knew what to do. I was in the3 bedroom talking with my mom and brother about possibly moving to LA, my dad was downstairs making a toot, and my girlfriend Sarah, my sister, and Stacy were all in the living room playing Words with Friends (yes, in the same room and Yes, against each other). It took a while to get things set up for the night with lighting candles, designating the community toilet (for number 1), and making drinks, but all in all, it turned out to be a better night than I think we even planned for.

I mean, no one can schedule a blackout and everyone loves spontaneousness! We lit candles to play Scattergories and rocked it for a while, carrying on the fun night we planned on. After we'd all had some toots and played some games, we came to our senses and realized that the power was out and it wasn't going to come on magically in the middle of the night and with forecasts of overnight temperatures close to zero degrees, we ended up falling back on my parent's on firing up the generator so we could have heat throughout the night.

We ended up also plugging in the fridge and our downstairs TV, and once again, we made a round of toots, sat ourselves down in a tight bunch, and plugged in season 1 of ABC's Modern Family.

Good show, good company, and a good last night with my brother and his girlfriend. Honestly, I wouldn't have traded it for anything.

I hope everyone else is having as good a time on their holidays as I am, 'cause I'm having a ton of it!

Sunday, December 26, 2010

Home for the Holidays: Never again, Jumbo Jump. Never. Again.

So, my grandma's-cousin's-daughter came over last week and I was in-charge of kid-handling. The children were actually quite precious- Natalie and Ben, 6 and 4, respectively, did not fight or yell at each other, while Grace, 3 years of age, spent most of her time running around the house talking on the phone. For the record, Gracie is one of the most adorable things I have ever had the privilege of playing telephone with. Being born with Downs Syndrome has not held her back from enjoying any minute of life and seeing her smile when the phone lit up (after I had dialed the number from my cell), well, it could have made the most hardened person crack their hideous shell and smile too.

To get back from my cute-child-digression, I had to figure out what a 23 year-old with limited babysitting skills could do with 2 small children. It was actually quite easy- I'd let technology do all my dirty work for me!

Enter Wii Party.

Wii Party is the latest addition to the Wii family gaming in which players compete in mini-games to earn the highest score, and thus, bragging rights and household renown. Some of the games are extremely similar in design to Mario Party, but since Nintendo owns the right to all of it, it's fair game, I guess.

As with all children, the closest way to time well-preoccupied are games that are easy to work and retain as much attention as possible. It turns out that activity has a name in Wii Party. It's called "Jumbo Jump" and it was PERFECT. All the game does it sends the Miis hurling down the ski-jump and at the right moment, the player needs to flick their remote upward. That's it- it worked perfectly.

Until Natalie said it. And I will remember it this moment for days to come:

She looked straight into my eyes with her light blue eyes, blonde pig-tails, and child-sized toothy grin and said...

"This game is SO much fun- I want to play it until we leave!"

She had just gotten there.

1 hour and over 50+ games later, they decided to try another mini-game. This experimental phase only lasted 2 games before they wanted to do more Jumbo Jump.

Here is the thing though- it wouldn't have been that bad except I. could. Not. Beat THEM! I don't know what it was or how they did it, but the kids kept getting the records on the game. They'd make records and then make some more, all the while, I was 'happily' getting second place. Mind you, I did my fair share of winning, but I never once made a record jump.

Upside: Natalie did not gloat. She made sure to let me know that second place was still good.
Downside: I can never Jumbo Jump again.

Here is a video of Jumbo Jump. All together, Wii Party is amazingly fun and worth snagging it you have the system and a fun family.

Home for the Holidays: Let the Good Times Roll

And by rolling, I mean me.

Because I am eating a lot. And I can't stop. I recently did a 3-week low-carb challenge with a buddy and let me tell you what- there is no room for a low-carb diet during Christmas. Grandma makes her bacon-wrapped water chestnuts and her fudge, her marshmellow/pretzel/chocolate things, and Mom makes her eggnog french toast with german sausage, and Dad...oh, man...DAD goes and makes his prime rib, butter-rosemary red potatoes...YOU CANNOT TURN IT DOWN. All of the hardcore discipline I had during the weeks prior to Christmas, you think I'd be able to watch my self. But here it is: I can't.

And I love it.

This incredible. I can't stop eating, drinking, sleeping....I am rolling all over the place.

Worth it.

Worth it.

Happy Holidays, everyone!!

Thursday, December 23, 2010

The New Year Begins-horribly

nic cage

Season Of the Witch

Plot: Nicolas Cage is a knight who ends up transporting a witch to a church to be exorcised, or killed, or thrown into a pond to test for buoyancy; however, the witch gets out and chaos ensues.

Here we go: Things that should help this movie

  1. Ron Perlman. Perlman’s held his own since he held the throne of New York’s underground with Linda Hamilton. Granted, everyone has ups and downs [Looney Tunes: Back in Action];
  2. The Witch. She’s kind of cute.

ANNNNNNNDDD now the things that should enforce this was the worst movie to start the new year.

  1. Nicolas Cage. He is like a younger, more balding Anthony Hopkins- he has one character. It doesn’t matter what era, what country, or what sector of Manhattan, Cage can only do one thing- suck. His last film that was somewhat enjoyable was National Treasure I and that was only, only because of his supporting cast. I’m getting sick thinking about it;
  2. The Not-So-Special-Effects. It honestly looks like a project from the Sci-fi channel. The one thing the sci-fi channel has going for it is the ability to pump out a ton of films. They do not have the special effects to pump out Hollywood flicks.  Don’t get me wrong, I LOVE the sci-fi channel because happen to be attracted to B-rate films- but that doesn’t mean I don’t shudder at Gargoyle;
  3. Dialogue. Go to the 1:51 mark on the second trailer. Don’t worry, I’ve linked the trailer here so you don’t waste your time looking for it;
  4. Nicolas Cage. I don’t like him;
  5. It’s release has already been delayed several months. I haven’t come across anything that gives the postponement any credit, so because I am seemingly on an anti-SOFW tirade, I’m going to say it’s because the producer realized he made a bad decision and tried to postpone it so everyone thought it was already released  and would forget about it.

Honestly, the last decent Cage film was Gone in Sixty Seconds*. It had star-power, creativity, and Vinnie Jones; Season of the Witch does not. My opinion: wait until the DVD is in the 5$ Wal-Mart bin and someone else has bought it, and gave it to Value Village, where you can then get it on red tag discount.

Season Of the Witch [ 0.3 High-Fives, preview style]

starring Nicolas Cage, Ron Perlman, Stephen Graham, and Claire Foy


*- this is an un-informed opinion since I haven’t seen Bad Lieutenant: Port of Call- New Orleans, which I heard was pretttty decent.

Monday, December 20, 2010

Random Thoughts…


…on Hollywood/Movies:

  • If Kate Winslet had not been saved and had successfully jumped off the back of the Titanic, do you think the Titanic would have still sunk? I like to think not…
  • If Eddy Murphy was more like his character from Nutty Professor, do you think his career would have taken a better turn? My guess: most likely.

….on things that are good:

  • comic books about aliens abducting one single simple minded human.  Check it out:;
  • Quitting a part-time customer service jobs;
  • 30 Rock. It’s GENIUS!

3 Sci-Fi flicks to Watch out for: Part Tre



Cowboys & Aliens

Plot: Daniel Craig wakes up with an obviously alien bro-clet* and all of a sudden *GASP!* aliens show up. Big bangs and shiny lights happen and BOOM before you know it, it’s a showdown- Cowboys vs. Aliens!

Here’s what is going to truly rock about this latest Jon Favreau’s excellency:

  1. Earth’s Greatest Heroes. Raise your hand if you’ve ever wished for James Bond AND Indiana Jones to kick it together to kick some alien butt? Yeah, I have two hands raised. ‘Nuff said;
  2. Directorship. Favreau’s been on a roll with his box office domination. Both Iron Man movies have proven his action sequence capabilities, and Zathura shows his ability to tell a story. Cowboys & Aliens should be an awesome attempt at pulling it all together. Since it doesn’t cater specifically to my comic geek brethren-and caters to ALL nerd classes- it’ll be a good show;
  3. Historien*. The movie is about cowboys defending their small town of Absolution against an unknown alien horde-'nuff said.

Speculation (s):

  1. Bad Aliens. They need to be badass and beyond. Last time Hollywood needed sweet aliens, they were defeated by half-full glasses of water. Translation: weak sauce;

So far, I think Cowboys & Aliens should be a rockin’ movie. Go see another movie in theatres right now to see trailers for it. And support the economy. Because progress is rockin’.

Cowboys & Aliens [ 5 High-Fives preview style]

starring Daniel Craig, Harrison Ford, Olivia Wilde, and Sam Rockwell

Directed by: Jonny Favs

* Bro-clet: a bracelet designed for a group of 3 guy friends as a pact of their undying man-love (true story: my friend has one. It’s why I’m laughing right now); Historien: this is Norwegian for “the story”. You’re welcome.

Thursday, December 16, 2010

3 Sci-Fi Flicks to Watch out For: Part Two

To continue on with the sci-fi previews:

The Warrior's Way

The Warrior’s Way

What should be good about it:

Ninjas vs The Wild West. This is a genre clash that isn’t approached too often because, personally, westerns haven’t been ‘in’ since entire sets had to be digital. Back in the day, Westerns needed only a couple of sets on Warner Bros lot and the rest was done in backyard Arizona (or something). But today, with rampant expansion, western plots are becoming harder and harder to come by that feature vague originality. Good thing this movie is more about the ninjas than the westerns, because it could work given the fact that it features NINJAS THAT FLY. If they pull it off, it could either be a good extension of the current ninja movie-plots akin to that of the 90’s [Surf Ninjas, Beverly Hills Ninja, 3 Ninjas, feks.] or it could kill a genre that seems to have few devout followers;

The Star-Power. Historically, Geoffrey Rush’s ‘random’ flicks [House on Haunted Hill, Mystery Men, etc] turn out to be sleeper hits. Nevermind the fact the film sports Danny Huston, Tony Cox, and…yes…Kate Bosworth, the amount of good reliable acting should help support the new comer to the Western film industry, Dong-gun Jang, our hero of the evening;

The Cinematography. The movie looks as if it’s a dreamscape, and to be honest, you’d have to almost be dreaming when you thought of this genre-collaboration. Like when Snoop Dogg had a cameo in “California Gurls”- it’s guaranteed whoever thought of that was either dreaming or had just bought a dime-bag off Snoop Dog and felt obliged to invite him on set. With the surreal design of the intensity of the ninjas, real sets and locations would limit the characters, so the almost entirely 3D rendered visuals actually fit this film;

Things that are worrisome about it:

It’s Ninja Assassin meets Wild West. And Ninja Assassin was already done, which is why I am concerned. That movie was intense and worth watching more than once, but if Warrior’s Way goes the way of Ninja Assassin, the film might have to wait for more the word-of-mouth that comes post-DVD release to receive any deserved attention;

Geoffrey Rush is going to Die. Just saying. He seems like the type of character you hate at first, love later, and then become crushed when he gets stabbed by the ninja brigade leader. For the record, I haven’t seen it yet, but that is what I’m calling.

In any case, the movie is already out in theatres and ready to be enjoyed. So, go enjoy it, and prepare for the Holidays the right way- with flying ninjas.


The Warrior’s Way [2.98 high-fives]

starring Dong-gun Jang, Geoffrey Rush, Danny Huston, and…….ugh.….Kate Bosworth

Thursday, December 9, 2010

Happy Thorsday!

This will be short and epic, I promise.




Told you so.


picture taken directly from Marvel’s release page of the new movie posters.

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Movie Monday: 3 Sci-fi Flicks to Watch out For; Part UNO

I like to watch movies. Even more so, I like to talk about movies [example(s): Avatar and Transformers II]. Even more than that, I like to look at upcoming movies and know what previews are playing in the theater to look like a badass. But actually, looking back, that's only worked a couple of times, so check that whole badass thing; insert "...look like a geek".
Once again, I digress.
Here are three (3) movies [science fiction] films coming up that I think should be pretty good, or at least I want them to be: Green Lantern, The Warrior’s Way, and Cowboys and Aliens.

Ryan Reynolds Green Lantern

Green Lantern

Premise: Hal Jordan (Ryan Reynolds) is chosen by a dying member of the Lantern Corps, an intergalactic United Nations, to take his place. The movie follows Jordan on his personal quest in becoming a true Lantern, both internally and physically.

What I Like:

  1. It’s a Superhero Flick. More importantly-and as others have said as well- it departs from the Earth-bound hero. This is something that DC Comics is very good at and their universe shows this with their character collections. Unlike Batman, who patrols Gotham, the Lantern Corps patrol sectors and regions of the universe.  A.k.A the dude has to go into space often and kick ass.
  2. Ryan Reynolds.  The dude was a solid choice for this role. Hal Jordan is sort of known as the all-courage, no-brain type hero and though Reynolds as proven himself a sturdy actor, I think everyone remembers one of his first roles as Berg on Two Guys, a Girl, and a Pizza Place. His developing action acting chops will come in handy for the role and I am truly excited to see one of the first bi-universe actor films [bi-universe = Reynolds also played Wade Wilson, or Deadpool, a jumbalaya of superpowers in X-Men Origins: Wolverine- in the Marvel Universe.
  3. The Supporting Cast. Tim Robbins (Senator Hammond), Mark Strong (as Sinestro), Peter Sarsgaard (as Hector Hammond), and Temuera  Morrison (as Abin Sur). Not only has Mark Strong been on a freaking role, but when is Peter Sarsgaard NOT a complete badass? Give me ONE good answer, I dare you. If Robbins does half as great an acting job that he did in Mystic River, then it’ll be worth a paid-ticket. Lastly, Temuera Morrison because he was Jango Fett.
  4. The Costume. I think it’s rad. ‘Nuff said. Though, there could be more black…

What I don’t:

  1. The Costume. I know! I just said I liked it! But here is the thing- the entire costume is digitally done. It’s like Ryan Reynolds walking around with a green Nav`i around his body. I just don’t know if I like it enough yet to fully get behind it. I like the color and the design, but from what I have seen in the trailer, I’m not buying it…which is sad, because I really want to. Plus, I think they should have done a bit more white-out on the eyes. So far it’s just weird being able to see his eyes.
  2. Blake Lively. How is a 20-something gossip girl supposed to be the owner of an airfield with a military contract? I know, I know, ‘you watch a ton of superhero movies and read comic books- why can’t you let this slide?’ Stuff it. I can believe in some realism if I want to, you know…
  3. The reliance of digi-FX. The movie’s premise is space-bound and I understand that, which is why I can’t bitch about this too much. I just hope that the director doesn’t get tooooo liberal with the graphics and make it look cheap [namely the test-flight shots. Reminds me a lot of this sketch by the Whitest Kids U Know. And because I know those sketches are low budget and they know it, then they can get away with making it look low budget. SO, that’s why I don’t want Green Lantern to get lazy with the graphics and stuff. If that makes sense…

Overall, I think what I dislike about the movie will be over-powered by the sheer possibilities of the Green Lantern character. Also, DC Comics has a lot of pressure to do well with this, seeing that the film was already voted “Most Anticipated Film of 2011” at the …VMA’s…? I’ll be checking in more on this once more trailers and pictures are available.

So, check out the trailer and available pics and tell me what you think! Next in-line: The Warrior’s Way.

Thursday, December 2, 2010

I’m Leaving…on a JetPlane! (insert auto-tune)


Soon, I’m heading out on trip to Norway- and this is an incredible moment. Something I’ve been wanting to do for a long damn time and it’s going to be mondo exciting. Because of this, I will be giving doing a split-so blog pre-trip, during trip,and follow up. It’ll be awesome because I’ll be updating my blog in a couple of ways. One of which will be the CRAZY an ABSURD excursions throughout the Homeland and the close proximity nations of awesome. Second, I’ll be commenting on the things that I find fun and entertaining, and sometimes thought provoking, much like I do now, but being a different country it might be actually include topics outside of movies and tv- not that there is anything wrong with movies and tv, because it’s all good stuff. In any case…I digress..

Isn’t this just incredibly awesome!?! Enjoy, because I will be enjoying every moment of it and be letting you in on all of it!

So, to start off, I’ll leave you with a good movie I’ve seen. You should all see this. It’s called Elling and it’s essentially a buddy movie with two Norwegian psychiatric patients released into the social world. The movie follows the two as they attempt to commit themselves back to “regular” society. It’s extremely good and the best part is if you have Netflix- it’s automatically subtitled! So, yeah! I had to watch this for one of my Norwegian classes (well, I wouldn’t say ‘had’ to, because it was the day before Winter Break, so we had a ton of sweet, sweet Norwegian snacky foods and Julbrus [Christmas soda]. Boom yeah).

Her er filmen!


Ha det godt!