December 18, 2009

What Avatar Is

1. Avatar is every bit as mind blowing as you expect to be. I spent a large part of my car ride to work determining if it was the best movie I HAVE EVER SEEN IN my life! Repeat viewing will tell.

2. Avatar is pretty much fanboy/geek/nirvana

3. Avatar is like living inside a psychedelic black light painting that your roommate had one their wall in college for looking at when he was "bored".

4. Avatar is an epic narrative that feels welcomingly familiar yet magically new at the same time.

5. Avatar is full of performances that are surprisingly good for a movie like this. Zoe Saldana in particular really shines, which is astounding because she's a motion capture character the whole movie. Oh yes, by the way, these motion capture creatures look completely real*, you will feeeel for them.

6. Avatar is so visually breathtaking that it I worry that the next 2D action movie I see (Yes even Iron Man 2) will seem like some simple VHS dub copy that someone recorded off TNT at 2:36 AM on a Tuesday night. In fact, from a special effects standpoint is greater than the WOW factor of the special effects of the combined face melting power Jurassic Park, ID4, District 9, and everything else you ever thought was cool in your entire life.

7. Avatar succeeds in foreshadowing every single cool thing that happens in the story. For example, when one character says "Someone will come who has the power to wield the super badass mega spear of truth destiny power and enlightenment," you damn well know that our boy is going to be regulating on space marines with the super badass mega spear of truth destiny power and enlightenment.**

8. Avatar is so insanely epic in it's scope that it makes the final battles of ID4 and Lord of The Rings (sick link there by the way) look like warm-up training videos for the final battle of Pandora.

9. Avatar is a movie that works on some deeeeeeep Bob Thompson levels. On one level, It's a film about a person who goes into a stationary position, turns his mind off, and occupies a new reality. On another level, technically, you as the viewer, watching in 3D IMAX (Gotta see it that way) tune out and get into a new world. Just like the protagonist in the movie, you'll find yourself waiting to get back into the virtual world and having a hard time telling what's real. I've been out of the movie for not even 12 hours and can't wait to see it again.

10. Avatar, finally is, what happens when a brilliant creative mastermind perfectly melds old fashioned story telling with cutting edge 21st century technology. It's a masterpiece of filmmaking and shining testament to the power of movies!

*You can kiss the Robert Zemeckis garbage (Beowulf, Christmas Carol, Polar Express) goodbye.

** This doesn't happen in the movie

December 17, 2009

24 Christmas Special

End Of The Decade Jumpoff: City of God

2002's "City of God" is the freshest movie of the decade. I'm not sure if it is the best (it could be, I haven't go that far), but it ranks highly as a film that succeeds on every level. The story is a complex tapestry of different time periods, character motivations, and adventure, all taking places in the wild slums of Rio De Janeiro. And the characters, from the terrifying Lil Ze to the heartbreaking Knockout Ned, invigorate the film with pulsating energy equal to the film's legendary soundtrack.   However, the clincher is the masterful direction by Brazilian born Fernando Meirelles.

The opening scene of the movie featured above, is an astounding feat of raw filmmaking. From a technical standpoint it's incredible; the editing, sound design, and camera work is dope (it even uses the "matrix" effect in an artistic way). When looked at the context of the story, the commencement is even more brilliant because it briefly introduces us to many of the main characters of the film  way before we get to know them in the context of the story. On repeat viewings of the film, the viewer can pick out characters and say, "damn, I didn't realize Carrot is holding a gun in that scene."

Yet what really sets the film apart for me is it's incredible depth. You show the movie to your bros and it's a "Scarface" like criminal narrative full of larger than life characters and badass one liners. On another level, it's a moving coming of age story (albeit a violent one) about a boy who matures into a strong young man and talented artist (the film was based off the autobiographical book written by the main character "Rocket"). And finally from a cultural standpoint, it really set the tone for the action-thriller genre. The handheld camera work came two years before "The Bourne Supremacy" made it the norm, and the gritty realism would set the tone from everything from "Slumdog Millionare" to even the most recent video game smash "Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2."

Check it out, I guarantee you'll like it, and that guarantee comes with a 100% stamp of approval of freshness. Keep it fresh, keep it cool, and keep it as one of the best movies of the decade.

There is Partying And Then There Is This

If only this dude was wearing a costume.

December 16, 2009

Is Avatar An Ad For Vonage?

Yes, the blue alien woman is aghast that that the blue alien man got the coloring wrong on his full face Vonage tattoo. Yes, I can't wait for Avatar!

December 11, 2009

Happy Hanukkah

You light the candles, I light up all the suckas that don't respect the Hebrew Hammer! But seriously, to all my Jewish readers, have a wonderful holiday season!

December 10, 2009

Decade Jumpoff: Grand Theft Auto And The American Narrative

Released in October 2001 for the Playstation 2 console, Grand Theft Auto III shook the world with it's controversial violence, scope of it's story, and complete realization of it's world (even down to it's radio stations). Video games had never been like this before, and if you believe the numerous accolades the game has received, video games were never the same after. It pioneered the open "sandbox" game where everything from peacefully driving a taxi cab for money to going on murderous sprees was possible. And while this was a huge reason why the games were so successful, it is not the only reason. As ye olde high school english teacher once said to me: "It's all about the story."

Whether it's bank robber Jesse James, depression all-star John Dillinger, or fictional characters such as Michael Corleone or Tony Montana, the criminal is massive figure in American storytelling. Part of the reason the GTA series is so successful is because it taps into this outlaw spirit that America loves. We can relate to the protagonist's struggle to get to a better life but we also want them to do it in a fantastical (i.e. violent) way that we as law abiding citizens cannot.

However just as stories around campfires evolved into books and then into movies, GTA is the next jump in terms of the criminal narrative. GTA IV was the first game in the series to present choices to the gamer. And while the writing isn't winning any Pulitzers, the many narrative parts of the massive story show how effective a video game can be as a narrative. This great article from SLATE magazine perfectly exemplifies this point.
At one pivotal moment, Bellic has to choose between killing two people—one a total jerk who could help advance his career, and one a good friend who can't do much for him. There's no right or wrong decision here—well, actually, there are two wrong decisions—and players will struggle to make the choice. No cheat code or online FAQ can help you here.

While I don't see the video game replacing the book or the moving picture any time soon, GTA is the series that shows the true narrative potential of video games. In the next decade the medium as a true storytelling tool will definitely evolve, and don't worry, I hope it goes someplace more than killin cops with flame throwers and icing criminals with baseball bats (but that's still kind of fun).

December 8, 2009

Decade Jumpoff: The Symmetry of Diesel

Vin Diesel is the decade's most symmetrical movie star. His ten year span of ass kicking and pushing pedals to the limit is almost poetic in how it fits together. And while I'm not saying it was composed with a fountain pen by Kay Ryan (that's the Poet Laureate yo), but it's interesting how it all fits together.

Some say that Diesel's career started with movies like "Boiler Room" and "Pitch Black," and while those were solid films, let's be honest, things didn't jump into higher speed until "The Fast and The Furious."

It was a movie that took a classic American story; a man, a car, and whole bunch of evil folks and updated it with nitrous tanks and import models. Yet it no coincidence that other characters in the film (Paul Walker, Ja Rule) drive foreign imports, Diesel, Mr. Melting Pot drives a classic American muscle car (granted he totals it in the end, but hey, that's foreshadowing his career trajectory).

With "The Fast & The Furious" underneath his belt, he took a whole bunch of bizarre projects trying to become an even bigger star. He fought aliens (including an alien Judi Dench), battled terrorists with XXXtreme sports, and even saved babies from Koreans (come on now Vin!), but never became the massive star everyone thought he would be. So he went back to what he was good at: punishing fools and pushing pedals to the limit. 2009's "Fast & Furious" was a smash, opening to 70 million and making over 340 million world wide.

So, Vin, you start the decade with fast cars and end it with end with faster cars and I'll forget about the crap in the middle. Wait, what, now that you're a star again, your making sequels to Chronicles of Riddick and XXX, no, you can't be serious, didn't you learn anything? Vin? Vin?

December 7, 2009



When I turned 10 years old, it was a very big deal for all the parties involved. I was anxiously expecting the impending arrival of some fresh Nerf guns and my parents, grandparents, and other relatives were impressed that I was now in double digit world. Double digits, that's a hell of concept. I can only imagine what 100 feels like. I can tell you one thing, that's a hell of lot candles on a cake.

And now here we are, on the cusp of entering the double digit years, it's a place that we're going to be a long time. Barring some insane medical advancements, I'll probably retire both in the literal and metaphorical sense in the double digits. The world is going to change a lot in the doubles, hopefully things will be double the fun and joy, and not double the sadness.

So before the great odometer ticks up, let's take this time to look back at EVERYTHING. There are many retrospectives coming out now, and many more  forthcoming. Some, like TIME magazine's  seek to remind you how much the decade sucked. Some like, Film School Rejects provide a very insightful look on the important films of the decade. Me, well, let's just say I went through high school, college, and young adulthood during the 00s, so in other words, I have lots to talk about.

December 4, 2009

Have A Ahhhhhhhnuld Weekend

Still Got It

When Is It Cool To Start Bumping Christmas Jams?

When it comes to Christmas Music, there are couple of things you gotta know. The first, I don't play games when it comes to Christmas music. The second, I have a very substantial library full of classic standards and modern bangers. The third, don't even think about spreading sonically inclined holiday cheer until December 1!

Christmas in CalifornIay can be tough. There isn't that many lights, there definitely isn't snow anywhere, and tis' hard to be in Christmas cheer when you are wearing board shorts and surfing all the time brahhhhh. So, because it doesn't really feel like Christmas, I've been struggling with tapping the song library because I don't want to start the sleigh early (apparently starting the sleigh early can really unjingle some people's bells).

What I'm going to do, is ease into the Christmas song world. One minute I'll be listening to some Brad Paisley, mix it up with a little brah man indie rock Edward Sharpe, and then out of nowhere comes Jim Jones "Living Fast and Balling At Christmas Time." The next day I'll stuff the Christmas Song Stocking a little more, then a little more. Before you know, I'll have Mariah Carey on repeat, and if you don't know about Mariah Carey and Christmas, well you must be Scrooge.

December 3, 2009

Scar Wars

This was on slashfilm earlier, but it's too good not to share with the world.

December 2, 2009

Steven Seagal Lawman: And Why The WWF Should Be More Powerful

Nothing gets Steven Seagal excited like mix and matching human appendages into strange positions. Take this poor fellow above, looks like he's a victim of Steven making a modern art piece of human arms. And don't want to share the rest of the images, but let's just say I've seen Steven Seagal do some  things with fingers, toes, and kneecaps, that you can't possibly fathom. But all arm twisting aside, are people aware that Steven has a new TV show where he is a cop? Let me clarify, he is not playing a cop, no, he really is a cop, apparently he's been one for 20 years.

That being said, if the reviews of the show are to be believed, apparently Steven is not snapping fingers like chicken bones or ripping out throats (wait, that was Swayze) on the show. Which brings me to the question of the decade? Why the hell is Steven Seagal not snapping fingers like chicken bones and ripping out throats on his TV SHOW?

The reason? I'll tell you the reason.  When it comes to "reality" TV shows like this, the wrong people are calling the shots. The person who needs to be calling the shots is none other than Vince McMahon, the mastermind of the WWE. This is a dude who virtually invented "reality" television, so therefore I'm sure he could make Mr. Seagal's show a hell of lot cooler. And what is cooler? Check out this classic Seagal scene below.

And by the way, if I seem a little crazy today, it's because I still have not recovered from the mind melt of the Iron Man 2 poster.

November 24, 2009

Thanksgiving Interpretations

This one came from Shaq's Twitter Feed.

Just A Little Zombie Thanksgiving, oh my, that's not a turkey he's cooking up

Star Wars Thanksgiving

Arnold Thanksgiving

Not Really Sure What's Going On Here

Is this real?

November 23, 2009

2012 Fills A Hole In The Film Universe

"2012" is the film that I've been waiting for years. It fulfills a promise made to me 14 years ago by film auteur Kevin Costner. And it fills a giant blank space in the film universe. IT IS THE LONG AWAITED PREQUEL TO WATERWORLD.

At the end of "2012" the human race is on a whole bunch of boats, or arcs, floating in the ocean. That's it, that's how it ends, however I'm told after the credits Dennis Hopper shows up to show how the renegade smokers are born. Also, a film attendent took a break from keeping the "New Moon" hordes at bay and told me that The Mariner, aka Coster is clearly visible in the background of many scenes.

This is earth shattering news people, Waterworld is a forgotten classic that was way ahead of it's time. Rumor has it that Al Gore hosts midnight screenings of on the harvest moon of the third month of each year. So do yourself a favor, go see 2012, and then go rent Waterworld, I promise you, you'll that convenient or not, you'll find some truth there.

November 20, 2009

New Moon Fever Sweeps The Nation: Are You Safe?

While millions of fans are enjoying "New Moon" this weekend, there is a dark and tragic underside to this mania. You see with almost every girl in the universe devouring this books, there is another group of society that is victimized: teenage boys. You see, thanks to Twilight, now every young boy must either be a broody vampire with crazy hair who may or may not be really into classical music (don't even get me started on diamond skin) or a ripped werewolf. What ever happened to being really smart or good at sports?

It's times like this that a young man must just hope he'll get chomped on by a wolf or attacked by a vampiro. If I'm going out, let's hope the Vampire Queen of Louisiana gets me.

November 18, 2009

World of Call of Duty?

For all you gamers out there, check out this little tidbit from LA Times reporter Ben Fritz's article regarding a potential Modern Warfare sequel
"One person close to the company said it also was considering adapting Call of Duty as a massively multi-player online world. The genre, in which Activision's Blizzard Entertainment subsidiary is a leader, requires huge upfront investments but can be very profitable as players pay a monthly subscription fee"
Whoah! As if the leveling up in Modern Warfare 2 wasn't enough, get ready to be a level 80 night elf with a thermal scope automatic weapon and riot shild.

Lost Season 6 Poster

I can't hold it in anymore, I'm so excited for the final Season of LOST that I have spent a solid 45 minutes coming over the details in the poster. I've analyzed everything from the placement of the characters to the spots and slashes in the letters. Couple things to notice

1. Faraday, Boone, Miles, Michael, Ana Lucia, Charlotte, Lapidus, Shannon, Desmond, Mr. Eko, Kate, Jack, Sawyer, Locke, Ben, Sayid, Libby, Sun, Jin, Claire, Hurley, Juliet, Charlie, Richard, Bernard, Rose and Vincent all appear on the poster.

2. Locke's back is turned to us, this is important, probably because he is evil.

3. 2010 has four digits, which is the same amount of letters in "LOST." I'm just kidding this is not a clue, or is it?

4. There clearly is shark fin over Desmond and Mr. Eko's head which either alludes to Desmond's real life sexual harrasment case or Mr. Eko's prowess at driving a "shark" submarine in GI JOE.

5. The smoke monster is all over the poster, that's him in the black background.

November 17, 2009

Oscar Sleeper Snores Loudly: Crazy Heart

The Dude returns, this time he's bowling for the Oscar. Starring four time Academy Award winner Jeff Bridges as an aging country singer, the film basically looks like "The Wrestler" except substitute country music for wrestling. I've always been a fan of Bridges, and while I know that many of my peers admire him for his brah man performance as "The Dude" (which is the lamest Halloween costume ever), I'm a fan of his work in the criminally unseen "Arlington Road."

I thought that Morgan Freeman was going to be a instant win for "Invictus," but "Crazy Heart" has really shaken things up.

November 16, 2009

Understanding G.I. Joe

If you recall, earlier in the summer I spoke about how I felt I was out of the GI JOE demographic and I felt terrible for not wanting to see it. Well I guess I couldn't live with myself because under the cover of dahkness I rented it from netflix. So, after a totally un-successful weekend campaign to convince my friends to watch G.I. Joe, I was forced to finish the film by myself on a small screen as the hours of the weekend waned away on Sunday night.

What I found surprised me, not in a "wow, this movie is going to win best picture way" but more in a "this is one of the most bat-shit crazy movies I've ever seen way." It's full of wild destruction of landmarks, secret underwater bases in the the Sahara, and cameos from people from "The Mummy" movies, and yes I'm talking about Brendan Frasier and ImmmmmoooooTep. The action was reasonably well directed, Stephen Sommers has stepped his game up since "Van Helsing," but the whole thing just felt very surreal.

It hovered in a space between violent and cartoon spectacle, which is exactly where you don't want to be. "Transformers" is all spectacle, "Saving Private Ryan" is all violent, and this is like Saving Private Ryan, but with evil sharks and nanotechnology robots eating people's brains. So I guess, my initial gut reaction was correct, I should have avoided GI JOE, it just was too much for me. And now that I'm old, I can't handle it all.

November 13, 2009

Water On The Moon Part 2: The Possibilities

Now that water was found in the moon, the moon is currently the object of my imagination, so here is what we can expect on a lunar level in the near future.

1. Quidditch- With the low gravity of the moon, players could ride self propulsion devices and actually play the legendary game in real life. When I realized this was possible, I fell out of my chair, and then drank some Polyjuice potion, and paid a visit to the Deathy Hallows set to say hello to Hermione

2. Skateboarding- The moon gravity feature from the Tony Hawk pro-skater video games will now become a reality making extreme sports, much more extreme now, mahn.

3. NASA Ice Cream will now be the start of a long line of brands that involve the moon. Italians, the owner of the legendary "Italian Ice" dynasty, will succumb to the power of moon ice, and there will be order in the ice cream world once more.

4. The moon landing will now be revealed to be totally true, and all the haters will have begin to cook up new theories regarding Mars.

5. Plans are already in the works for the first concert to be held on the moon, my vote would be for Daft Punk.

6. Wes Anderson will finally be able to shoot his movie in space (who cares?)

Water on the Moon

Please tell me that the news that there is water on the moon is not some huge viral marketing scheme for "Twilight: New Moon."

November 11, 2009

Glee's Not So Gleeful Take On Disability

After all the meathead baseball jocks dominated TV with their "sports" (I didn't see any Yankees doing the single ladies dance), "Glee" returns to the airwaves this evening. And while it's return will bring fans much uhhhh, joy, many people in the disability community are far from ecstatic about the show, in particular, tonight's episode (AP Article Here).

Word on the street is the Artie (Kevin McHale) will have his own musical number tonight. The song is "Proud Mary" and the Glee club members will join him in wheelchairs for the song (surprised they have time to do this in between all that damn pregnancy drama). The disability community is not mad about the song choice (hey, some people get fired up about Glee songs), they are upset that the McHale is not disabled (SEE THE SHOCKING PICTURE BELOW), and believe his role should have gone to someone who is.

I'm a big fan of "Glee" and I'm totally on the side of the disability community with this issue. While I understand that the producers have a responsibility to the hire ups to cast the best performer, I can't help but feel sad about the massive opportunity the "Glee" folks missed with this casting. It would have sent a powerful message and created a positive role model for other disabled actors. Gloria Castaneda, head of Media State Access, a California state office that promotes actors with disabilities said this:

"When a person with a disability sees a positive image on TV that looks like them, their whole attitude changes. It gives them hope for what they can do in the future,"

Glee is a bold show. There are strong positive characters of different races, sexual identities, and religions. It has tackled such serious topics as teen pregnancy and sexuality. So why can't it step up on the bright stage and belt one powerful jam out for the disabled community?

November 10, 2009

Kick-Ass Trailer

Trailer Park | MySpace Video

I don't want to say but it looks like it kicks a lot of....

How Spiderman 4 Web Slanging Should Work

After watching this video, it is clear to me that Spiderman 4 needs to be rated "R" and feature spiderman tethering enemies to planes, sticking them to lamp posts (wait he already does that), and webbing them to  gas canisters.

Answering The Call of Duty

In case you were wondering, those are night vision goggles. If you're follow up question is whether wearing night vision googles will enhance your ability meet beautiful people of the opposite sex, that is something that you need to find yourself. Either way, you should know that today, November 10th is the day that "Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2" comes out to the world. It has been billed as the biggest "entertainment launch" in history.

I will be acquiring this game, but not without slight trepidation. As computer processor power increases, so does the power of video games. Games now can be considered "art," see Sony's recent game"Flower." Yet video games can also be wildly real.

As these games become more and more intense, I worry that they will dull us to the real horrors of war. The  recent tragic events at Fort Hood remind us that violence is real and terrifying. Prior to the release of Modern Warfare, a minor controversy erupted over a portion of the game where the player tags along on a terrorist mission, killing innocents at an crowded Airport (great piece on it here).

I can only say that as games increase in their intensity and realism, I wish the game creators start thinking more about their responsibility as content creators. The Pentagon has a Hollywood Liason department (who seems to work extra hard on the Transformer's Movies), so perhaps they should be turning their eyes to "Call of Duty" world. It's a massive influence on how people young and old view warfare and violence, and you don't need night vision goggles to see that.

November 9, 2009

Weekend Wrap Up: Christmas Caroling For November

Why is Jim Carrey flying in this poster? Since when does Ace have the powers of flight? But let's cut the chase here, and by chase, I mean the lame re-adaptation of "A Christmas Carol" the play I have seen more than any other play in the brief history of TPG's timeline of plays.

I'm a big fan of ye ole ACC for many reasons. The first is that it features my main man Tiny Tim, a cheerful ball of Christmas joy that brightens up my soul every holiday season. The second is the ghost of Jacob Marley always got me good, with the chains and all, but I apologize I'm getting off track here. Why was this film even made? And why was it not live action?

Every time I see one of these Robert Zemeckis CGI movies all i think of is how much cooler they would be if they were live action. Beowulf cutting off his own arm and ripping out a dragon's heart, yeah wish it was live action. The Polar Express arriving in the North Pole, god dayum, I wish it was real. Jacob Marrrrrrleeeyyyy's ghost showing up, yeah wish it was en realidad as well.

If I wanted to see CGI trickery, I would go play Call of Duty Modern Warfare 2.

November 6, 2009

November 5, 2009

Danny Boyle Picks His New Movie

Danny Boyle has decided that his next movie (link takes you to the story) will be about legendary climber Aron Ralston. This is exciting for a multitude of reasons, that I'll break down right here.

1. In a world of fictional badasses, Aron Ralston is the real deal. Dude broke his own arm, sawed threw with a dull knife, and then made it safety (and tons of accolades in the world). In the great badass spectrum, he's somewhere in the stratosphere.

2. Danny Boyle is one of the most interesting directors in the game right now. He continually challenges himself with his movies. He re-invented the zombie genre with "28 Days Later," melted people's hearts won some serious hardware with "Slumdog," and made the criminally underatted "Millions."

3. Climbing movies are always intense. See "Touching The Void."

4. Dude sawed his own arm

5. Dude sawed his own arm

November 4, 2009

Nightmare Status

This is the stuff nightmares are made of. It's real.

Prince of Persia Trailer (Where are the Chompers)

1. It has a lot of jumping, which is a staple of the Prince, tons of jumping, he's training for the Olympics, competing against long time Gold Medal holder, Italian superstar Mario.

2. Jake Gyllenhaal does not look like a Prince, especially not of Persia, not of anywhere.

3. They are quick to remind us that film is from the "Pirates of the Caribbean" guys, this would explain why all these Persians all have British accents.

4. Sandstorms are the new tidal waves, don't let the people from 2012 know.

5. At one point in time Gyllenhalalalallah was supposed to play Spiderman, good to see that he now is finally getting to his aerial acrobatics, to bad they will not compare to current TV star Chris O'Donnell's aerial acrobatics in "Batman & Robin."

6. The trailer doesn't include any staples of the original game including but not limited to potions, chompers, spikes, gates, falling floor plates, tiny steps, heroic mouses, fat offensive level six guards, and hard to kill level 9 defensive guards,.

7. The narration is straight out of some late night stoner friendly history special on the end of the world.

8. "Sands of Time" is a direct rip-off of the Cape Cod National Park short film "The Sands of Time," which I saw on the infamous 7th grade Cape Cod trip, where legendary blogger Jay Judah may or may not have been present, where also my candy addiction begin to show it's early stages.

9. The original game was wildly gory, with chompers, ummm, chomping people in half, spikes impaling you, and bloody deaths by gravity, where is that now Jerry B?

10. Director Mike Newell made "Four Weddings and a Funeral" and has said in a recent interview that Hugh Grant will be have a cameo as the Prince's brother. This is not true, but considering all Persians are British in this world, I wouldn't be surprised.

November 3, 2009

Tom Hardy Will Eat You

Take a look at this man. This is a man who doesn't like it when people take a look at him. How do I know this? I know this because he has blood all over his chest, and rule #43 in the TPG book of life, you don't look at jacked terrifying dudes with blood all over their chest. In case you were wondering rule #42 is always eat the fortune cookie after your read the fortune.

This is man is Tom Hardy and he's the the next big thing in Hollywood. He has been getting rave reviews for his performance in a film called "Bronson" (trailer here). Recently he has been in the news because Arthur Miller has cast him and Charlize Theron in the next "Mad Max" film, wait, did I say Arthur Miller, I meant George Miller. Arthur Miller, wrote "The Crucible" and "Death Of A Salesman" which is light years away from Mad Max, sorry to spite you there Arty.

Tom Hardy seems like the real deal, in fact he very well could be the action movie badass that the world needs right now. And, let me just one thing clear, Sam Worthington's AMC (action movie cred) plummeted once he decided to go all blue on us in "Avatar." Maybe he can save it with "Clash of the Titans", but when I pit the AMC or Hardy vs the AMC or Worthington, even in this picture, Hardy still takes the hardware, the trophy, and the cake.

Worthington holding a Trash Can Lid

October 30, 2009

Why Aren't You In A Museum?

When Horror Movies & Reality Collide

Fiction is so 2008. Reality is all the rage now. "Paranormal Activity", which looks "real" is everywhere, next week "The Fourth Kind" abducts all of us with it's "real footage" of alien abduction, and soon 2012 comes out, which is totally real, wait, no it's not, uh, forget it. Either way, here are some stories that should rattle your bones. Some of them have been turned into films some of them probably will be films in 2-3 years. Just wait.

The Mothman
On the left is the infamous "Mothman" is a monster that lurks somewhere in Virginia. No, it's not a politician caught with sex toys and a stripper in a graveyard, an alien, a demon, or bored high school kid. It is something scaaarrry that plenty of people believe that is real. Apparently, numerous people recount seeing a six foot tall massive creature with glowing red eyes and an enormous pair of wings. So it was a really really stoned Angel or some type of otherworldy demon. Either way, it has found it's way to Hollywood in a 2002 flick with Richard Gere and Laura Linney. I saw it at a young adult gathering and it destroyed me.

Fallen Angel
This video has been around since Ebaum's World and it still freaks me out. The scare factor here is enhanced by the handheld camera, the foreign language, and the setting (where are these hermanos?). This video also taps into the Chupacabra obsession of Latin America. Part of the appeal is that the video reminds me of the classic short story "A Very Old Man With Enormous Wings" by Marquez, which deals with a fallen angel in a poor community (you're welcome past English teachers). Either way this video still provides a good fright, even if some people aleady debunked it.
Sawney Bean
Yeah, you don't know bout ol' Sawney do yah? It's cool, I didn't either. He's an old Scottish bro who cannibalized over 1000 people, I guess that doesn't make him a bro though, he'd be a bro if he cannibalized people and then ate them with a side of fries and mug of Bud Deez. Legend has it that his brood (over 46 family members) just rolled around Scotland eating nuggets, but these weren't DEEZ nuggets, they were human nuggets. Terrifying, but I gotta say that picture doesn't do him justice.

Stay tuned for more Halloween goods, both on the site and on twitter

October 28, 2009

24 Season 8 Trailer (DAMNNNNNNNN)

Halloween Show Down: Vampires Vs Werewolves Vs Zombies

In the spirit of Halloween let's do a classic little mash-up, and I aint talking about any "Glee" mashup, I'm talking about a bone snapping flesh ripping monster Face Off. So here we go

Zombie- I'm only including the brain eeeaating beasts out of courtesy because let's be honest here folks, zombies even a zombie horde doesn't bring much to the table. Even if you give them that "28 Days Later" super speed, all they have is their intensity. If they can get taken down quick with simple headshot/lawn mower decapitation, I don't see how they can hang with Vampires and Werewolves.

Vampire- Ah, the Twilight terror. Blessed with strength, shape shifting (bats, wolves, it don't matter), and a thirst for sangre rojo, the vampire is quite a nemesis. In the evening, he can regulate Warren G style, but let's just be honest here, in the daytime, totally helpless. Forced to sleep in the box, dreaming of The Harker Sisters, and totally exposed.

Werewolf- Don't let the Taylor Lautnerization of these ferocious beasts fool you, they don't play around. And while they only come out during a full moon, when they are at the height of their powers they are not be taken lightly, which is a polite way of saying they are not to be fucked with.

The Verdict: Lil bit of an upset here, I gotta go with the Werewolf, but not for the reasons you might think. Let me break it down and drop a lil something on you right here. Werewolves are the only creatures that have full mental capacity during the day, so while Vampires are sleeping, Werewolves are scheming. And yeah they only turn when the moon is full, but it's as simple as not inviting vampires inside. Give it up Wolfie, you're the champ.

October 26, 2009

Welcome To Halloween Week

Welcome to Halloween Week on thislalife. During the course of the week, I will be dropping science, dropping truth, and dropping metaphorical candies into your awaiting pillowcase, cause let's be honest, people stopped trick or treating with those plastic pumpkins when they were two.

First, let's tackle the horror movie war that raged at the box office this weekend.

"Paranormal Activity" destroyed "Saw" and things are looking up for the human race. Why? Because this could be the the nail in the eyeball for the "torture-porn genre" of horror films. It's fitting that it's evil reign on top was ended by "Paranormal," a film that almost, I repeat almost, made me lose it in the theatre.

I've never been a fan of the "Saw" movies, granted I've only seen the first, but honestly, it's just too depressing, everything in the movies are so damn grim, lost people, lost in their lifes, and stuck in traps set to tear them to pieces, sorry meng, not my jam, not my jam at all. Glad you're finished, even though, I will probably end up going to see the next one, only because it's in 3D and 3D horror movies are the truth.

October 23, 2009

Have a Great Weekend,

From the Gangster Wabbbbbbittttttts!

Weekend Preview: Here's to you Nicolas Cage

Take a look at the man above, not just a glance, but a real good look. What do you see? I see an icon, a cinematic legendary on par with Perseus or Kratos. This is a man who won an Oscar for "Leaving Las Vegas," started a franchise with National Treasure, and created the Trinity of 90's action movies, of course the Trinity being "The Rock," "Con Air," and "Face/Off." In other words straight legend status.

*TPG Fun Fact- I have an autographed picture of Nicholas Cage back at home, got it when I was 12.

Being a big fan of THE CAGE I was surprised to hear him talking about his new movie "Astro Boy," that opens today. Yeah, I guess he voices one of the characters, damn, CAGE, I'm surprised. I guess the road to the "Face/Off" sequel/prequel/spinoff/tv series/video game is paved in shitty 3D animated movies about boys with rockets and their feet and the creepy scientists that invented them.

CAGE is not one to get freaked out over "Paranormal Activity", "The Vampire's Assistant" or the "Saw" movies, all opening this weekend, you see, the dude took down the "The Wicker Man" so demonic possessions, toothy accountants, and jigsaw puzzles don't make him sweat, they make him cackle. In other news "Amelia" comes out today as well, and that my good friends is something that scares Nicholas Cage, no, not Hillary Swank, but, the demonic entity that swallowed Amelia, the Bermuda Triangle. Cage hates the Bermuda Triangle, and it hates him too.

October 22, 2009

Stars Wars Fans Continue To Dream (Nothing Wrong With That)

Yes, that little piece of debris flying through the air in the midst of Rock Em Sock Em Robot brawl is supposedly R2D2. And while I don't think Jorge Lucas is going to be asking for some commission money, I gotta say, that's a pretty rough cameo for a robot. Shoulda have given him some more screen time there. In other news, my family has a cookie jar that is shaped like R2, you open up his top and get some cookies, that's what I'm talking about.

But wait there's more, yesterday the geek universe was a abuzz from Alderaan to Hoth with rumors that a new 3D Star Wars trilogy was being planned with Spielberg and Coppola directing. The Lucasfilm Jedi assassins were sent out to silence whoever leaked this information, or it was quickly revealed to be bogus, the rumor, the faint dream of many a nerd was chopped to pieces like Qui Gon Jinn.

It's tough being a Star Wars fan right now. Star Trek is getting buzz like a beehive and the Jedis have been reduced to video games and cartoons. Fear not all you Star Wars fans, I'm sure something great is coming, it's a trip to Tatooine. Check it out below

October 21, 2009

Wolfman Trailer

I'm digging this new trailer, in fact, this might be a midnight movie for me.

October 20, 2009

Where Are They Now With The Transformers

1. Optimus-  Optimus Prime (LINK IS A MUST CLICK) put down his dual battle swords and entered into a different type of brawl: United States Politics. He has been a fierce a noble lobbyist for the auto industry and every war that is for oil, because he doesn't believe in alternative energy, cause that's for hippies.

2. Bumble Bee- After only speaking through music, Optimus and the other autobots told him to leave. He now can be see on tour with Linkin Park

3. Megatron- After getting work by the Autobots twice, he has decided on a new career, competitive Rubiks Cube Conventions (note this is real, the dude next to me at Comic Con told me all about it)

4. Ironhide- Currently sitting in the harbor in Boston, oh, wait that's old Ironsides, sorry Ironhide, you must get it all the time.....zing!

5. Mudflap and Skids- With Orci and Kurtzman officially not writing the new Transformers, these two robots who "can't read" are writing the sequel. No one cares.

October 17, 2009

Where Are The Wild Things? In a peaceful dream world.

It's a scorching July day, and you and your buddies are playing in the recently installed above ground pool. Super Soakers XP 500s, 200s, and Free Willy rafts are all part of the equation. Mid "Waterworld" reenactment, someone forces you underwater for a little too long. Immediately you feel like you're going to drown. It's not fun anymore, you burst out of the water, dripping wet and storm into his living room and then delete his save games in Golden Eye on N64 (it doesn't matter that he has unlocked the Aztec level).

"Where The Wild Things Are" is a film that captures all these emotions from childhood. From the the joys of simple "play" to the uncertainty and fear of when things go wrong. It is not a perfect film, it has some pacing issues, and it's lack of plot may bother people. However, you'll be hard pressed to find a more visually and emotionally striking film this year.

Technically, the film is as refreshing as Country Time Lemonade served by your mother to calm you down after you delete your buddies video game (yeah it's a big deal). Director Spike Jonze uses special effects to create everything from sea storms, to massive forts, and most importantly the Wild Things themselves. Half puppets, half actors, and with CGI faces, the wild things make the Transformers look like soulless pieces of scrap metal (which I guess they are?).

Yet all these striking visual elements don't mean anything without a good story, and here is where the film semi-falters. The screenwriter David Eggers, is a prize winning novelist, and his script doesn't really have a conventional story line, rather like all of his stories, rides on the strength of the emotions of the characters. This style of story telling leads to an extremely moving story that sometimes slows the pacing of the film. The pace bothers some people, yet I didn't mind it because the pay off is massive.

Without a doubt, there's a lot going on in the film. The Wild Things may fragments of Max's real life or they could be metaphors for human emotions (I like this theory). Either way, Spike Jonze, his creative team, and Max Records, the child actor who is the soul of film together create an enjoyable film. Every element combines to form a film that is not wild at all, but rather, an emotionally experience that is magically peaceful.

October 16, 2009

Week Ends

Welcome To The Weekend (BOPPPPPPP)<----Punch Noise

Life The Movie: Balloon Boy And The News of Conversation.

He's already got a t-shirt. Yes, it's him, the legendary six year old aerial navigator FALCON, a.k.a. Balloon Boy, but also the actor formerly known as Russell (he lost mad weight) from UP. In a story that will soon fade into the abyss with the Octomom and hopefully (oh god, hopefully) Jon & Kate, Balloon Boy had a great ride (even if it was in the attic).

On twitter yesterday, almost every trending topic was about the boy, and within an hour there were groups popping up all over facebook. With everyone on a computer/phone tracking the story, it became international news faster than you can say FALCON PUNCH! I believe that it wasn't actually news worthy, yet it was news simply because everyone was talking about it. It's like if someone staged the most jaw dropping marriage proposal ever and then everyone talked about it on the Internet and suddenly it had to be CNN, simply cause everyone talked about it. Let me get my Einstein out and break it down for ya.

(Trivial Event Occurs + People Talk About It) x Internet Hype = International News

It's the "news of conversation" and it is here to stay. I only wish that pressing things like wars, healthcare, and the economy where the news of conversation. And by the way, can somebody get Balloon boy in action movie already, I mean look at the kid. FALCON PUNCH

October 15, 2009

October 14, 2009

Now We're Talking: Expendables Trailer!!


Expendables- not in the dictionary, which makes sense cause this movie looks so insane, it couldn't even fit in the dictionary! Based off this trailer it contains the following

1. Schwarenegger, Stallone, Statham, Ludgren, Li, Roberts Rourke, Couture, Crews, Willis, and Austin. If you don't know all those names, look them up, it will provide with an explosive morning of adventure.

2. Evil African dudes saying "wjeee weilll kellll dem"

3. Evil Latino dudes saying something about "American Disease," damn lots of people really don't like us.

4. Water boarding, because why the hell not?

5. Jokes about macho men recieving text messages? Really? Stallone? Come on now, this isn't "Stop or my Mom will shoot"

6. Randy the Ram apparently alive and well after "The Wrestler."

7. Jokes about Jet Li's Asian accent (Stallone really got a thing for minority stereotypes)

8. Explosions and in the words of JJ "hot fire."

9. Arterial blood sprays, which is good because we know it will be in the vein of the hilariously/disturbing/dream shattering  Rambo IV.

10. Plenty of grunting, which in action movies is a good thing