A Year In The Life of Matt Sutton
Monday, December 31, 2007; 9:54 a.m.
With only a few hours left until 2007 officially ends here on the east coast of the United States, I just wanted to take the time to ruminate on the past year.
My theme for the year was to move forward. There are a few big changes in my life that should have been made years ago, so I put those forth back in January as a personal goal I wanted to achieve this year. I wanted to make those changes, or at least get as close as I could. I didn't actually accomplish all that I'd hoped for, unfortunately, but I did get the ball rolling in the right direction. There's a bit of work left for me to do, but I don't see a problem with carrying the "move forward" theme into the new year.
Other than that, it's been a weird year in general for yours truly.I don't really talk a whole lot about my personal life, because there's certain readers of this blog that I'd like to keep in the dark about certain things. But 2007 was a peculiar year for me, thanks to some troubles I had with a few people. (Have you noticed that I didn't make any references to my friends from Lawrenceburg like I did in 2006?) Things have been smoothed over for the most part, however, so my 2007 really ended on a good note.
Parts of the year did suck, that sort of thing cannot be avoided. But I still think that it was a fun year. Though looking back, I believe I spent more time watching movies than I did doing anything else. But oh, do I love my movies.
Anyway, I guess that wasn't a very in-depth at the year that was. But hey, why go into detail here when you can just read the archives? That's just as good, except they weren't written with a few months of perspective.
So happy new year, everybody. Thanks to all of you who visited this humble corner of cyberspace over the last twelve months. I know there's only four or five regulars, but you guys make writing this thing worth it. Now let's see what 2008 brings, hm?
Friday, December 28, 2007; 7:14 p.m.
Just got back from what may or may not be my last visit to a movie theater this year. Unfortunately, no theater within fifty miles is showing Sweeney Todd or Juno, so we caught Aliens vs. Predator: Requiem instead. And in summary, it was some of the most fun I've had at the movies all year.
The truth is the characters are pretty bad and the actors aren't much better, but I didn't pay to see any human cast. I paid to see Aliens fight Predators, and the movie delivered. Though the lighting was a bit too dark for some parts of the movie, what I could make out through the darkness was some of the wildest, most insane stuff I've seen in a while. Every second spent in the hospital location during the movie is gold. Gold, Jerry!
Yeah, okay, the movie is most assuredly not going to win any awards and probably won't be remembered as an all-time classic, but I am most certainly not going to argue with a movie with balls as big as this one's. Alien vs. Predator: Requiem gets three and a half stars from yours truly, and it's most certainly an improvement upon the first Alien vs. Predator movie.
Tuesday, December 25, 2007; 5:58 p.m.
Merry Christmas, everybody!
Me, I think I've had a pretty good one. I scored an Xbox 360, the first video game console I've ever owned that wasn't created by Nintendo, so I'm pretty excited with that. And I'm also excited to finally post my two new reviews: Bob Clark's 1974 horror cult classic Black Christmas, and Glen Morgan's remake from last year. I think it's fun that for two Christmases in a row, I've posted a review of a holiday-themed movie directed by Bob Clark. Too bad he only did Black Christmas and A Christmas Story, otherwise I'd do another one next year.
So have fun reading those, and once again, I hope you and yours have a very merry Christmas.
Monday, December 24, 2007; 7:17 p.m.
Yep, tonight is Christmas Eve. As a big fan of the holiday season, the anticipation here at Casa de Sutton is at a fever pitch. Tomorrow is going to be a fun day, I just know it. And I hope it'll be a fun day for you readers too, even the ones who don't celebrate Christmas. Who am I to discriminate when it comes to fun and goodwill?
I also hope that you guys will be back here tomorrow to check out my new Christmas-themed reviews. I've got them completed and I'll have them up sometime tomorrow, so be sure to read them if you get a free moment. Believe it or not, I've actually started thinking up ideas for next year's holiday review(s). I'm currently leaning towards one of three movies: either Santa Slay, Silent Night, Deadly Night, or one of the all-time holiday classics, Santa Claus Conquers The Martians. There's another twelve months until I actually have to start working on that, but it never hurts to start preparing early.
So anyway, everybody be good for goodness' sake. I'll be back tomorrow with another post. See you then.
Sunday, December 23, 2007; 1:03 a.m.
Unless you've been living under a rock for the last month or so, then you've probably noticed that Christmas is in a couple of days. We here at Casa de Sutton are big fans of Christmas, and we're eagerly anticipating the big day. And while I have the opportunity to wish everyone a safe and happy holiday.
Meanwhile, my preparations for a Christmas celebration here at the MSX are going well. Those two new reviews I'm working on are coming along swimmingly. I've got one finished already, and I'm about halfway through the second one. I'll hopefully have them all done and ready for your reading pleasure in time for the 25th. Consider them a little Christmas present from me to you, my dear readers.
So start counting the days until Christmas, if you celebrate it. I know I am.
Monday, December 17, 2007; 7:38 p.m.
Those three comic books I ordered online a week and a half ago came in this afternoon, so yeah, I guess you could say I'm in a good mood. In case you missed my earlier post about it, I wrote that I'd purchased Batman Annual #14, Daredevil: Yellow #1, and a comic adaptation of Superman IV: The Quest For Peace online in order to bolstered my very, very meager comic book collection. My order arrived on my doorstep today, and the three comics are all in really great shape. A good buy on my part, I believe.
The comics unfortunately didn't come with bags or boards, so I had to improvise for now with cut-up cardboard boxes and and some protective plastic sleeves that would usually go in a three-ring binder. They aren't exactly perfect, but eh, it'll do until I can go acquire some proper bags and boards. I'd probably buy some of those oblong storage boxes too, but with only eight issues in my collection, I don't really need them right now. Maybe I will if and when my collection really gets deep.
Wow... I've become even dorkier than I used to be. Awesome.
Sunday, December 16, 2007; 10:52 a.m.
I managed to get out and catch I Am Legend last night, and I was impressed. There were a few things I'd have liked to have seen explored more deeply, but I really don't have much else to complain about. The CGI is convincing, the action scenes are exciting, the cinematography is gorgeous, and Will Smith puts forth a great performance. Since he spends nearly the entire movie by himself, a lot is asked of him. And I thought he did a fantastic job, balancing between a grizzled survivor and a guy that's gone absolutely stir crazy. So thumbs up to Will Smith and four stars on the patent-pending Sutton Scale for I Am Legend.
Best part of the movie? Seeing the full trailer for The Dark Knight in front of it. I was already excited to see it, then I got even more excited after seeing pictures of Heath Ledger as the Joker online. But after seeing this trailer, July 18th can't get here any faster. Anticipation has hit critical, folks.
Tuesday, December 11, 2007; 12:56 p.m.
I've been hyping it for months now, and yesterday afternoon, I think I got it pretty much finished. So without further ado, I present "Sutton At The Arcade," ten new reviews, all of which are either video game adaptations or movies that feature games as an important plot device. These new reviews are...
And while you're at it check out my older reviews of video game adaptations...
I really wanted to add Hitman to the list of new reviews, but a decent download of it apparently won't be released online until after Christmas. And I really didn't want to wait another two or three weeks to get this thing posted. I'll probably do Hitman some other time.
Now I believe I can move on to the two Black Christmas reviews I wanted to get posted on the 25th. Depending on how quickly Netflix works and how quickly I can write them, I'll hopefully be able to get at least one of them done in time for the big day. I've also got another review I finished a month ago, and I've been holding onto it for a special occasion. I think I might hang onto it for a few more weeks and use it to kick off the new year.
So if you'll excuse me, I've got to start preparing for the Black Christmas reviews. Have fun enjoying "Sutton At The Arcade," because I certainly had fun writing the new reviews.
Friday, December 7, 2007; 6:57 p.m.
Man, it's hard to believe that we're already a full week into the month of December. Seems like yesterday that 2007 was just beginning, and now it's almost over. Where does all the time go?
Anyway, I'm not posting because I wanted to talk about the calendar. I actually wanted to do a little more talking about comic books. Remember two weeks ago when I said I'd bought issues two through six of Daredevil: Yellow? I tracked down a supposedly near mint copy of the first issue on MyComicShop.com for only $1.49, so I went ahead and bought it. I also found a pair of comics on the site that I just had to have: near mint copies of Batman Annual #14 (for only 98 cents, no less) and - get this - an adaptation of Superman IV. I've gone on record saying that Superman IV is one of the worst movies I've ever seen, but I had to have a comic book version just to prove that such a thing exists. And for $7.54 after shipping, I think I got a pretty good deal on these three comics. They'll be shipping to me on Wednesday, so I'll probably do another post about them in a week or two, whenever they arrive in my mailbox.
And I've been going through that site like crazy, marking all the stuff I'd eventually like to get one day. I did save the individual issues of Watchmen to my want list, but I think I might be better off getting the graphic novel. I only say that because getting all twelve issues off that website would set me back over 210 bucks, and that's a little rich for my blood.
While we're talking about comics, I found a few at the local library that I just had to check out. The ones I found are Batman: Year One, The Dark Knight Returns, Superman: President Lex, and a hardback edition of issues 14 through 27 of Ultimate Spider-Man. I haven't gotten around to reading any of the DC stuff yet, but I've been flipping through the Spider-Man book, and what I've read is so good. I wish the library had the first thirteen issues too, but I don't have a problem hunting them down online or on Amazon.
So yeah, I've got myself plenty of stuff to read.
Wednesday, November 28, 2007; 6:48 p.m.
In other news completely unrelated to Guitar Hero, there really isn't a whole lot else going on worth talking about. As usual, of course. I did finish up one more "Sutton at the Arcade" review the other day, which leaves me with two left to go on the list I started with. I am, though, considering adding Hitman to the list. I know I said a while back that I wasn't sure if I wanted to add it or not, but other than just wanting "Sutton at the Arcade" to be finished with enough time to get those two Black Christmas reviews written by Christmas Day, I don't see any reason why I couldn't review Hitman.
I guess I might just hunt down a decent download of it online if I can, since I'm not 100% sure I'll be catching it in theaters. As long as I could find a way to get it reviewed, I'd be fine. And I'm still bummed that Netflix doesn't offer the movie version of Double Dragon. I'd love to rip that awful movie to shreds. I caught part of it on television the other day, and I'm surprised I didn't see "Directed By Uwe Boll" pop up. What I saw was that bad. I think I'll have to try hunting that one down online too.
But no matter if I do or don't add to the project, I hope you regular readers are looking forward to "Sutton at the Movies." I'm certainly looking forward to posting it one of these days.
Wednesday, November 28, 2007; 5:54 p.m.
I don't even own a copy of it, but I think I've become addicted to Guitar Hero.
I say that because every time I pass a demo kiosk of it in Wal-Mart or GameStop of wherever, I have to pick up the guitar and play a song or three. I'm almost glad I don't own a copy of the game, because I don't think I'd ever put it down. Am I the only one like that?
But I do believe I'll have to hunt down a way to play it here at home. That would be so much easier than playing an in-store demo. And probably more fun too, I'd say.
Sunday, November 25, 2007; 2:28 a.m.
So I actually did get the opportunity to see The Mist a few hours ago. And I have to say that I was greatly impressed. Having only flipped through Stephen King's novella once or twice, I went in thinking it was going to be a twist on The Fog. Boy, was I wrong.
I'm actually afraid to go too in-depth with this short little review, for fear of giving anything away. But The Mist is thoroughly enthralling, capped off with an unbelievably bleak ending that no horror movie outside of the Saw franchise would have the balls to try. It's such an intense ending, contributing as much to the movie's quality as the rest of the film itself does. The cast is fantastic as well, with Thomas Jane and especially Marcia Gay Harden carrying the movie. I know the Academy doesn't like to recognize horror movies, but if Harden doesn't get some kind of nomination at the next Oscar ceremony, then there's no justice in the world. She's almost too good.
Go see The Mist right now. I don't care if it's 2:30 in the morning on the east coast, you should see it right doggone now. It's a four-star effort by all those involved, for sure.
Saturday, November 24, 2007; 5:42 p.m.
Ever find a really good deal that you just couldn't say no to? One that was just so enticing, you had to buy that product? I found one of those deals today.
My family and I visited the flea market over in Shelby County today. And while perusing the multitude of booths in which vendors displayed their wares, I came upon something I just had to have. It wasn't the tempting six-dollar copy of the Hitcher remake on DVD that someone was selling. Nor was it the even-more-tempting Friday the 13th video game on the original NES (which, at the rather humorous price of $12.99, was a little too expensive considering I didn't have that much money on me at the time) that was being offered at another booth.
One particular vendor, amongst the junk he had lying around, had a few boxes of comics. And amongst the cornucopia of random assorted comics and large amount of Fantastic Four books, I discovered issues two through six of Daredevil: Yellow. He didn't have the first issue (though he did have two copies of issue two, oddly enough), but at the price of one dollar per issue, I couldn't say no. They're bagged and boarded in apparently mint or near mint condition, so yeah, that's a fantastic find on my part.
I just need to hunt down the first issue now. I know of a few comic book stores around here, and if I can't find it at either of them, there's always eBay. I've been meaning to expand my rather meager comic book collection beyond the realm of graphic novels and trade paperbacks, so I believe I did good. And having downloaded and read Daredevil: Yellow in the past, I know I've scored at least five good issues. I just wish the guy had had issue #1, because then I'd be fully satisfied. I get that, and I'll have to start hunting down the copy of Batman Annual #14 that I owned way back in the day. Finding that would make me the happiest Who in all of Whoville.
So to summarize, yay comics. And hooray for good comics that only cost a buck an issue, too.
Thursday, November 22, 2007; 9:33 p.m.
You know what's bullcrap?
Me, my dad, and my sister headed out a few hours ago with the intention of seeing The Mist. I double- and triple-checked the showtimes on the theater's website, and I even called them to make sure. So we get to the theater, and what's posted on the door? "We do not have The Mist." Ain't that a kick in the head?
We're going to try and catch it at a different theater this weekend if we can get our schedules worked out. But driving all that way to this one theater we assumed had it, only to find out they didn't, really grinds my gears something fierce. I don't like having my time wasted because some jackass theater couldn't get their facts straight.
At least The Incredibles is on TV right now. I do loves me some Incredibles. (And while you're at it, go check out my review of said movie. I'd say it's some of the best work I've done as an amateur reviewer. Yes, I'm a total shill. No, I don't have any shame.)
But yeah, that's that. Hopefully, we'll get around to seeing The Mist this weekend. As always, we'll just have to see how it goes.
Thursday, November 22, 2007; 11:24 a.m.
I hope all you readers are having a fantastic Thanksgiving so far. Mine's okay, but it's been a bit of a letdown so far. We here at Casa de Sutton unfortunately don't have anything planned for today, not even a turkey, but hopefully something will pop up by the end of the day. I'd really hate for one of my favorite holidays to end up being no different from the fifty-one other Thursdays out of the year. And I could really go for some turkey right about now, too.
And I know I complained about it last year, but what is the deal with the Macy's Thanksgiving parade? Maybe I need to start watching CBS's coverage of the parade, because I'm sick and tired of watching all these ungodly lame little productions that NBC airs. I don't really want to see some idiot from High School Musical or the cast of the Legally Blonde Broadway musical hold up the parade to do some crappy lip-syncing. I really don't care at all about whatever's hot with the Disney Channel crowd, nor do I care about the latest hit Broadway production, so I really don't want to see this garbage slowing down the parade. Am I just being a fuddy-duddy? Or what? I don't know, but everything about the parade is really grinding my gears. I guess I shouldn't be so grumpy on a holiday, so I figure I'll just have to suck it up and get over it.
Anyway, my imitation of Statler and Waldorf aside, happy Thanksgiving. I hope you and yours are having a wonderful one, and for you non-American readers, happy Thursday. And remember, there's only thirty-three more days until Christmas. Then it'll be 2008 before we know it. Time really flies nowadays, doesn't it?
Tuesday, November 20, 2007; 11:54 p.m.
I finally got around to reading all those comics I was talking about two posts ago, and I really need to cobble together the money to buy some of these in print. The same goes for the first issue of the Freddy vs. Jason vs. Ash comic that I downloaded this morning. I don't have a problem reading them on my computer, but the real thing is more aesthetically pleasing. I'm sure most of you comics fans have an idea of what I'm talking about, right?
But I stand by what I said last week, in that I'd gladly pay good money to watch movie versions of these comics, whether they be theatrical or the made-for-DVD cartoons that have been gaining popularity lately. I think a movie version of Superman: Birthright would have made for a great re-starting point for a film franchise had Brett Ratner not made Superman Returns. Good stuff, Birthright is.
And I think that a line of superhero horror movies would be spectacular. Am I the only one that would want to see a Batman: Red Rain or Marvel Zombies movie? I'd be the first in line to see those, no matter how they were released. Hey, DC and Marvel! I doubt you're reading, but if you are, could you make those movies happen? Please?
So yeah, all those comics I downloaded? They were great. I still haven't figured out why it took me so long to get into comic books. I should have been reading these things years ago.
Saturday, November 17, 2007; 10:46 p.m.
Got out of the house to check out P2 at the Danville theater tonight. Yeah, I know Beowulf is supposed to be the big movie this weekend, but since I've never read the source material and since I'm not really into fantasy movies, I'll probably wait to rent it. Not even the prospect of an animated Angelina Jolie with no clothes can make me interested.
Well, maybe a little interested.
Anyway, back to P2. I figured now would be the prime time to see it, since I don't think it'll be in theaters much longer after its poor box office showing last week. So how did I feel about the movie? I liked it. I've seen better movies, but I've seen far worse too. P2's problem is that, outside of one really intense scene, the first half is much too slow and methodical. If I'd been watching the movie on television, I probably would have gotten bored and changed the channel during the first half. The movie picks up during the second half, though, and becomes quite entertaining. So if you can make it through the first half, the second half is your reward.
Though the execution is hit or miss at times, P2 is a watchable movie with a rather novel concept and two engaging lead characters. It certainly isn't as bad as the critical and box office reactions would have you believe. So I'm going to give the movie a very solid three stars. If only that first half had been a bit stronger...
Monday, November 12, 2007; 5:27 p.m.
I know I talk an awful lot about my writing, to the point of nearly being excessive. But I've also been doing a little bit of reading too. I've been downloading some comics, primarily Elseworlds graphic novels and TPBs featuring Superman and Batman. I'm a fan of the Elseworlds and "What If..." stuff that DC and Marvel do, so I'm totally looking forward to reading stuff like Superman: Red Son and Batman: In Darkest Knight. And I'm especially looking forward to reading the Batman: Red Rain trilogy that I managed to hunt down.
Throw in the fact that I've also got all twelve issues of Superman: Birthright, along with Batman Annual #14, and Elseworlds books Superman: Last Son of Earth and Superman: Speeding Bullets, and I've got plenty of downloaded comics to keep me occupied. I do wish I had the money to track all of these down in print, because after quickly skimming through some of them, I would certainly approve of having them in my currently meager comic book collection.
And thinking about it, I believe DC could really do some good business with direct-to-DVD animated movies based on the Elseworlds line. I'd pay good money to watch movies where Batman becomes the Green Lantern or a bloodthirsty vampire. I'm sure they'd end up neutering the Red Rain trilogy in order to market it to the younger crowd, which is a bummer because from what I've seen from flipping through the comics, it'd almost have to be R-rated. And it'd be awesome, I'm sure.
So I'm gonna go get back into those comics. I've got twenty-three separate issues to read, and I've got to make some time for them.
Wednesday, November 7, 2007; 9:44 p.m.
I guess it's time for another update on the current writing project. Seems like this thing is never going to die; it'll just keep on going until the end of time. The work on "Sutton at the Arcade" is never going to end, I just know it.
I've got three movies remaining on the list that I started with, but it feels like I've got a million more to go. And it doesn't help me any that a movie based on the Hitman games is coming out in a few weeks. I feel almost obligated to find a way to review it after it gets released, just so it could be added to the list. We're going to have to wait and see, as always.
Truth be told, I don't know if I want to add Hitman to the list, just because I'm ready for "Sutton at the Arcade" to be over and done with. I want to hurry up and finish the job because I want to get these reviews posted. I also want to move onto some new projects, especially since I promised to get those reviews of the Black Christmas movies done in time for Christmas. Yeah, it's another seven weeks until Christmas, but I like to take my time during these reviews. If i haven't finished "Sutton at the Arcade" by the end of November, I might put it on hold to concentrate on the Christmas reviews. Though if writing them is anything like the review of A Christmas Story that I wrote last year, I'll have them done in a few hours.
Anyway, I've got plenty of writing to do between now and the end of the year. Hopefully I'll be able to get it all done.
Friday, November 2, 2007; 11:09 p.m.
In case you're new to the MSX, today is a big day for yours truly. It's special because six years ago today, the first post went live at the very blog you're reading right now. I'm quite proud of the MSX, even though there haven't been too many major changes to how I've done things over time. After maintaining the MSX for the better part of a decade, I really can't imagine going without it. Yeah, I'm not the best or most frequent blogger there is, and I might only have four or five regular readers, but the MSX has become a very important part of who I am. Besides, it's either this or keep a regular diary, and I just don't do the whole diary thing.
But wow, it's hard to imagine I've been doing this for six years. And to think, it all started because I stole the idea from the guy that lived across the hall from me in college. (And I didn't even know the word "blog" for the first two or three years of the MSX's existence. Was there such a thing as a blog in 2001? I guess I'll have to check Wikipedia later.) There wasn't much when the MSX's doors opened for the first time, but it's evolved into something that's still as fun as it was when I started six years ago. And I hope you handful of readers are enjoying it too.
Here's to six more years.
Wednesday, October 31, 2007; 12:30 p.m.
It's October 31st, so I'm sure you know what that means. Yep, happy Halloween, folks. I hope everybody has a fun, safe evening tonight. That means that you should try avoiding those apples full of razor blades that everybody warns you about. Or avoiding apples in general today. It's a day for candy and debauchary, not for fruit. Unless it's fruit made of candy. Or even an apple with a Jolly Rancher stuck in the middle of it or something.
So go have yourself some fun doing whatever it is you've got planned tonight. Personally, I've got plans to do what I do every year: watch scary movies and have fun handing out candy. And I don't believe I'd have it any other way. Once again, happy Halloween. Is there any day - besides Christmas morning - that's more fun?
Saturday, October 27, 2007; 11:28 p.m.
Outside of going to see movies, I've also been doing a bit of writing about them. You may remember me mentioning that a few dozen times. I just finished up a new review a few days ago, which leaves me at four to go before my "Sutton At The Arcade" project is finally finished. So I guess you could say that it's coming along nicely. I'm hoping to have the final four done by the beginning of December at the latest, but as always, we'll have to see.
I am a little bummed, however, that I'm not going to have a new horror movie review up for Halloween this year. But I guess that's my own fault for not timing my writing schedule correctly. I did have an idea for some holiday-oriented reviews, though. Since Christmas is two months away, my idea was to review both the 1974 and 2006 versions of Black Christmas and post them on the big day. I'd review Silent Night, Deadly Night too, but that DVD is out of print and I'm currently unable to find a good download of it. Eh, there's always next year, I guess. (And if anybody suggests I review Santa's Slay... why?)
But yeah, a Black Christmas double feature this Christmas sounds like a pretty good idea to me. I'll hopefully have that for you this Christmas.
Saturday, October 27, 2007; 8:16 p.m.
For the second weekend in a row, I decided to head out to the cinemas and check out a new horror movie in preparation for Halloween. This week's adventure into the genre was Saw IV, which I'd been looking forward to since it was announced last year. And I figure that I might as well talk about it for a little while.
I might as well come right out and say that I'm not sure if Saw IV is a sequel that needed to be made. Don't get me wrong, I love the Saw movies and I'll see a hundred Saw movies if they make them. But outside of one or two loose ends, Saw III was a pretty high note for the franchise to have gone out on. That said, I thought this fourth movie was entertaining enough. It might be a little too complex for its own good, but I thought that it was solid for the most part. The cast tries hard, the direction is fine as usual, and the traps are as creative as you'd expect. But there's something about it that makes it not as good as its predecessors. I wish I could put my finger on exactly what that something is, but right now, I'm stumped.
That's not to say I didn't like the movie, though. It's got everything one would expect from the franchise, which - depending on your personal opinion of the Saw movies - may or may not be a good thing. As a fan, I have to say that even in spite of its flaws, I did like Saw IV. And after that ending, it has me wondering just what the hell they'll do with Saw V. I guess we'll see next Halloween. But I'll give Saw IV three stars, as well as a recommendation to primarily the most diehard of fans.
Saturday, October 20, 2007; 10:06 p.m.
Knowing most of my regular readers, I'm sure that it's common knowledge among them that the producers of Smallville got together a while back to create a pilot for a television show based on Aquaman. Yes, Aquaman. The CW didn't pick up the show, nor did any other network, but the pilot has been available online since last summer. I finally got around to watching it just a little bit ago, and yeah, I can understand why the CW didn't pick up the show.
It's not that it was bad, but outside of one intriguing subplot that seemed like it could be a ripoff of The 4400, I really didn't see anything that would have made me want to tune in week after week. It seems like it would have ended up being just a cheap Smallville wannabe, and that isn't good. At least the cast was likable, especially Justin Hartley as Aquaman. But I think it might be for the best that the show didn't work out, because I think Hartley works better as Smallville's Green Arrow than as Aquaman.
It's almost a bummer that the CW didn't give the show at least one season, just to see where the Bermuda Triangle subplot went, but as I said, I can understand why they didn't. The truth of the matter is that this one episode was pretty underwhelming. But at least it was worth at least one watch.
Friday, October 19, 2007; 11:38 p.m.
With Halloween on its way, I figure that the best way to prepare for the big day is to watch lots and lots of horror movies. And that's exactly what I had in mind tonight when I headed out to catch 30 Days of Night. I'll admit that I've never read the comics that served as the flick's inspiration, but I'm sure they're great, because the movie is fantastic.
I guess I'm used to seeing the brooding, mopey, thoroughly emo Whedonesque vampires and the pseudo-raver vampires from the Blade trilogy, because I definitely wasn't expecting the violent, vicious, bloodthirsty monsters from 30 Days of Night. And I think I could get used to these vampires, to be perfectly honest. 30 Days of Night is a rare modern horror movie that presents not only something outside the norm, but something actually good for a change. The directing and music are fantastic, the cast is good, the action sequences are awesome (people in the theater were actually audibly cheering during some of them, no joke), and the whole thing put together equates to what I'd almost be willing to call the best horror movie of the year. (I say "almost" because there's a few other horror movies - namely Saw IV and P2 - coming out between now and the end of the year, and it'd be unfair to make a final judgment until then. But 30 Days of Night is definitely a contender.)
The movie is a decidedly non-traditional vampire movie, combining horror elements with what is essentially an extended action movie chase sequence, and it's done with gusto. I really can't find anything at all to complain about, outside of being unable to remember the names of any character besides the two leads. But that's an extremely minor complaint, so yeah, I'd call 30 Days of Night a pretty good horror movie. Good enough for me to give it four stars on the patent-pending Sutton Scale and my personal seal of approval. So I'm sure my readers who enjoy the genre will certainly like it.
All that's left for me to do is track down the comics, as well as a decent copy of the movie to download. Because I want to make a "Sutton At The Movies" induction out of it as soon as possible.
Sunday, October 14, 2007; 12:53 a.m.
Man, has it been a long night. My dad and I just got back from the drive-in theater over in Harrodsburg, and I was quite happy to get home and stretch. As much as I like drive-ins, the numb butt one gets from sitting in a car for six or seven hours is a bit much to endure. But regardless, it was a fun time.
We ended up being the first ones there, getting there right as the ticket booth opened up at 7:00. It was a little awkward to sit in this empty field for an hour by ourselves before anybody else arrived, but we managed to pass the time without getting too bored. People did eventually start showing up, I should note, but I think there were only ten or twelve other cars there total. It's probably because mid-October isn't really known for good drive-in weather. If this had been one of the summer months, the place probably would have been packed. Though in any event, it was still fun.
The two movies featured tonight were 3:10 To Yuma. That doesn't sound like a natural Mr. Woodcock and the remake of doubleheader, I'll admit, but I'm not going to argue with two movies for five bucks. First up was Mr. Woodcock, which I thought was really funny. It's better than School For Scoundrels, at least. Billy Bob Thornton and Seann William Scott are great and Ethan Suplee is funny in his minor role, and the movie as a whole is entertaining. So I'll give it a thumbs up with three and a half stars on the Sutton Scale.
After Mr. Woodcock and the trailers for the One Missed Call remake and National Treasure 2, it was time for the second half of the show, 3:10 To Yuma. I'll admit that I didn't really have a whole lot of interest in it, simply because I'm not all that big of a western enthusiast. I like Tombstone, but that's about as far as it goes. But I figured that since Christian Bale and Russell Crowe are in it, it couldn't have been too bad. Turns out that I actually liked it a lot. Everyone in the cast does a great job, with Ben Foster nearly stealing the show, the direction is solid, and the music is well done. It's definitely a movie I would have paid the full seven bucks to see in an indoor theater, for sure. I'll give 3:10 To Yuma four stars on my Sutton Scale, so go check it out if it's still playing in your neck of the woods.
And since it's so late, I think I'm going to wrap this up and head to bed. Besides, that bucket of popcorn I had at the drive-in isn't sitting too well with me. There's a reason I don't take butter on my popcorn. So anyway, good night, and remember to support your local drive-in.
Tuesday, October 9, 2007; 1:43 a.m.
The writing is coming along pretty good, thank you for asking. I finished up a new piece a few hours ago, which leaves me with four down, six to go. I'm still looking forward to doing that triple feature of House of the Dead 2, Alone in the Dark 2, and BloodRayne 2 whenever Netflix can have all three of them available. And I'm especially anticipating BloodRayne 2, just to see the guy that played Scut Farkus in A Christmas Story as a vampire Billy the Kid. That's going to be one of those, as VH1 would be wont to call it, "awesomely bad" movies, for sure.
But yeah, enough about that. I talk enough about my reviews as it is. Seems like I never really have a topic in mind when I go into these posts, when I could pick one of a million things to talk about. There's the Britney Spears train wreck, the girl from Kentucky that sued McDonald's, my take on the current television schedule, or anything just on my mind at the time. But since life is is moving at a snail's pace for yours truly, I don't really have a whole lot going on that's worth talking about. I hope to change that in the next few months if all goes well.
This reminds me... I should probably note that the MSX's sixth anniversary is next month. I feel like I should start preparing a "State of the Blog" address for the big day, but I'll more than likely play it by ear. I'm starting to really get accustomed to making things up as I go along. That should probably be made my permanent tagline, if I ever decide to ditch the revolving ones: "The Matt Sutton Experience - Making Things Up As I Go Since 2001."
Friday, October 5, 2007; 2:43 a.m.
I've finally started putting some serious work into that "Sutton At The Arcade" thing I've been hyping for forever. I've got two reviews completed, one almost done, and somewhere in the neighborhood of six or seven left. I wish I'd done a little better planning, because I've got a bunch of horror movies lined up in my Netflix list after what I've got set for "Sutton At The Arcade." If I'd thought ahead, I could have gotten them reviewed and posted them on Halloween. That could have been something neat to do, but I've already committed myself to that "Sutton At The Movies" thing. And I'm just too stubborn to drop what I'm doing.
But I guess you can be looking forward to "Sutton At The Arcade" being posted soon, hopefully within the next month or six weeks. But you'll get to read them once I get them written.
Saturday, September 29, 2007; 11:54 p.m.
So tonight I managed to get out of the house and catch a showing of Resident Evil: Extinction. I'd been looking forward to seeing it for a while now, and I have to say that I wasn't disappointed. Sure, Wesker barely has anything to do at all, and the Claire Redfield character has nothing at all in common with her video game counterpart, but I must admit that I thought the movie was quite entertaining.
Naturally, there were parts I didn't think flowed all that well, primarily the thoroughly useless scene where Milla Jovovich gets trapped in a room full of zombie dogs. But other than that, I really don't have a whole lot of negative things to say about the movie. The cast is strong, the effects are good (though some of the blood spurts obviously being CGI was a bit distracting), and I thought a lot of the scares were effective.
I don't really know if I'd recommend the movie to those who weren't fond of the first two chapters in the Resident Evil movie trilogy. If you didn't like the other movies, then you could probably skip Extinction and not feel bad. If you did like them, though, then this one will more than likely be up your alley. I dug it a lot, so I'm going to give it three and a half stars on the patent-pending Sutton Scale, along with a thumbs up.
Thursday, September 27, 2007; 7:52 p.m.
And here we are, folks. Welcome back to the show, where not a lot goes on, but we make the most of it anyway. I'm in a posting mood, but since I don't really have a particular topic in mind, I'll just do what I always do and make something up as I go along. Hopefully I'll be able to start doing posts with a bit more substance once things really start going my way, but as always, I'll have to adopt my typical "wait and see" mentality for now.
But moving on, I did get a chance to see the season premiere of Heroes the other night. There were some good parts (the Hiro stuff), some lame parts (the "robots and aliens" thing), and some confusing parts (the siblings fleeing to America), but I thought it was a watchable episode. It at least has me wanting to see next week's episode, so the episode did its job.
I also got the chance to catch the first episode of Reaper on Tuesday night. I'm still bummed that the CW chose to cancel Veronica Mars, but Reaper shows a lot of promise. The cast is funny and the premise is novel, so I'll give it a chance.
Then in a few minutes are the season premieres of Smallville and My Name Is Earl, both of which I'm looking forward to seeing. Since I have yet to join the twenty-first century and acquire a TiVo (or a reasonable facsimile thereof), I'll probably end up watching one and downloading the other once I can find it online. I'd be happy if the shows were on different nights so I wouldn't have to choose between them, but I guess I could say the same thing about Heroes and Monday Night Raw. At least there isn't anything in my regular viewing schedule that's up against Supernatural, which starts back up next week, so that's a plus.
And it seems I'm beginning to take this post into an odd, rambling tangent. That sort of thing seems to happen when I do one of these posts written on the fly. But as I said, I'm hoping that once I get the big ball rolling, I'll have more worthwhile material for the MSX. Not that discussing the beginning of the fall TV season isn't worthwhile, but you know what I mean.
Wednesday, September 19, 2007; 11:57 p.m.
I mentioned early last week that I was thinking about picking up Resident Evil 4 and playing through the main game again. So I did get back into the game the other day, and I blazed through it pretty darn quickly. Finished it up a few hours ago, as a matter of fact. My final time was seven hours, ten minutes, and nineteen seconds, with 969 kills racked up and only four deaths against me. I probably could have shortened by time by a few minutes had I not taken both pathways after the cabin swarm in order to boost my body count.
So yeah, that marks eleven victories for yours truly in Resident Evil 4. At this point, playing through it in Normal Mode doesn't really seem like all that much of a challenge anymore. It's way to easy to breeze through it now, what with all the super-powered weapons in my arsenal. And Hard Mode is almost too hard, especially since I'm stuck. So yeah, I don't really know what else is left for me in Resident Evil 4.
I might pick it up again sometime, when the mood for a twelth victory strikes me. That, or whenever I get around to picking up a Wii. I haven't been lucky enough to purchase a Wii yet, but I'm totally going to pick up it and the Wii version of Resident Evil 4 sometime. And it'll be awesome.
Sunday, September 16, 2007; 2:07 p.m.
Just to kill a little time on this lazy Sunday afternoon, I've got a new review up over at the usual place. This new one is of Battle Royale, which, if you're an American, you'll probably have to rent it from Netflix or download it if you want to watch it without jump through a whole bunch of hoops in order to acquire a copy. Or, I don't know, maybe do a search for it on YouTube, see if it's on there. Everything is on YouTube, isn't it?
But yeah, click the link and check out what I had to say about Battle Royale if you'd like. Then go track down a copy of the movie by whatever means possible. Or watch the movie first, then read the review. Or do one and not the other. What do I care, I'm not the boss of you. But read the review. Please?
Tuesday, September 11, 2007; 10:03 p.m.
Okey dokey, folks, here it is: the last episode of the second season of Who Wants To Be A Superhero?. We're still down to just three - Hyper-Strike, the Defuser, and Hygena - following the previous episode's non-elimination. Let's get to it and see just who walks way from this thing as the winner.
I said at the previous post that the heroes were going to meet someone with plenty of balls, and that's true. As they celebrate their advancement to the finals, the party is crashed by ECW performer Balls Mahoney. Balls reveals that he was not sent by Doctor Dark, but by Stan so he could teach them to fight. The funny part is that they obviously have no idea who Balls is.
Morning comes, and it's time for the heroes to attend "superhero stunt school." Once they arrive, Balls introduces them to a stuntman by the name of John, who promptly cracks Balls upside the head with a metal folding chair. The heroes are amazed that he dented that chair with his head, but somebody needs to send them some tapes of Balls's matches in the old-school ECW. Once they see him get slammed through a table that's been set on fire after it was covered with barbed wire and thumbtacks, they'll know just how tough he is.
So first up is some flight training, via wirework in front of a green screen. The heroes learn how to throw some punches and kicks after that, and once they've completed that, Balls declares their training to be complete.
But before they themselves can leave, Doctor Dark arrives and wants to throw down. Good thing they just finished learning how to fight. They promptly kick the everloving crap out of Doctor Dark, barely letting him get a punch in at all. Stan congratulates them, and asks that they report back to the lair.
Just like last season's conclusion, Stan takes each of the finalists aside, asking why they're there...
With that done, it's now time to find out who will win, and who will lose. Stan sends his three finalists to Universal Studios Hollywood for the big announcement, introducing them with their own goofy mock movie trailers and comments of encouragement from their families.
After they're introduced to the crowd, it's time to announce the winner. And the winner is... The Defuser. He dedicates his victory to not only his family, but also to every under-appreciated law enforcement official out there. All of the previously eliminated contestants return to congratulate him, along with his family, season one winner Feedback, and Stan Lee himself. Roll credits.
That's it for season two, folks. I was kinda taken aback at the beginning of the season by how silly it was compared to last season, since I had to have a far greater suspension of disbelief. But I thought this season was fun, for sure. And while I was bummed that some of the heroes I was rooting for were eliminated early, I'm not upset at all that Hyper-Strike, Defuser, and Hygena were the finalists, and that Defuser was the last hero standing. I might have picked Hyper-Strike or Hygena out of those three if it were up to me, but I'm not arguing with Defuser.
So now, we can wait a year for the third season, if there is one. Until then, true believers, excelsior.
Tuesday, September 11, 2007; 9:37 p.m.
Alright, everybody, it's time for another of my patented Who Wants To Be A Superhero? recaps. We're down to the last two episodes of the season, which I'll be doing back to back, instead of as one long recap like I'd originally considered. And unfortunately, since the Sci-Fi Channel isn't running their usual Tuesday night reruns after ECW's show, I'm relegated to watching the episodes on SciFi.com. It's not really that big of a deal, as long as we get through this. So let's knock these bad boys out, okay?
When we last left our potential heroes, Parthenon had been eliminated, and Doctor Dark had unleashed Evil Stanzilla upon the city. As the episode begins, the regular Stan informs the remaining three heroes of Evil Stanzilla's rampage, directing them to the local power exchange. His gigantic villainous doppelganger is feeding off electricity, so the heroes have to run a line between two generators in order to create a power surge that will defeat him. But, as Stan says, there might be one small complication. That complication? Three pissed-off guard dogs.
Lucky for them, they happened to have some protective gear packed in their car. The dogs promptly go after them, with Hygena getting tackled by one and rendered pretty much immobile. She figures she'll take one for the team, so she tells the others to leave her behind while the dog goes after her. And with the other two dogs hanging off Defuser, Hyper-Strike manages to initiate the power surge and stop Evil Stanzilla.
Victorious, the heroes return to the lair. Battered and bruised from the dog fight, the trio reflect upon what happened, with Hygena believing she performed the worst in spite of her sacrifice. Stan contacts them, and to reward them for the day's efforts, he presents them with their own action figures. Naturally, they're thrilled. Where do I get my own action figure? I guess I have to sign up for season three.
The following morning, Stan dispatches them to an office building, reminding them that Doctor Dark is still at large. The three search through the building, and end up running into former MTV VJ Kennedy on the set of the Fox Reality Channel talk show Reality Remix. Turns out Stan had sent them there to teach them how to deal with the media. Of course, there's a hidden test going on, the test being to see what they'll reveal when they believe the cameras are off. Kinda like the food run from the first season.
Once they return to the lair, Stan asks them to, instead of doing normal mission reports, to tell one another what they're thinking. It isn't really a whole lot, outside of Hygena believing she could have done better, and that Hyper-Strike thinks he'll get cut. But enough of that, it's time for an elimination.
All three are called up to the chopping block, with Stan revealing just how they'd screwed up during the Reality Remix challenge. Turns out Hyper-Strike revealed that was raised in Vermont but lived in Chicago, Defuser revealed that he's a cop from Texas and that he has a teenage son, and Hygena revealed what part of California she's from, and that her husband is an attorney. But when it comes time for them to defend themselves, Hyper-Strike announces that he should be cut if Stan doesn't have complete faith in his abilities. It's then that Stan announces that the person turning in his or her costume will be...
Stan's decided to let all three pass through to the finals, because in spite of their flubs at the TV studio, he believes that all three of them have earned it.
Our three finalists return to the lair and find bottles of champagne with which to celebrate. But the party is interrupted by someone with plenty of balls. You'll see what I mean in the next post.
Tuesday, September 11, 2007; 12:32 a.m.
Guess what I just finished.
Go on, guess.
No, not Resident Evil 4. What do you think I am, some kind of game-dominating juggernaut? Actually, I just completed a new review. The movie in question is Aqua Teen Hunger Force Colon Movie Film For Theaters, the goofy movie based on the goofy cartoon on Adult Swim. Even though I probably wouldn't call it one of my better reviews as far as my writing performance goes, I do ask that you at least give it a quick read. Okay? Alright.
Coming up soon, within the next week or so, I'll officially be starting work on that "Sutton At The Arcade" project I've been talking about for so long. It'll be composed of nine reviews, all of them either based on video games or incorporating games heavily into the plot. Plus I plan on dipping into the archives and bringing out the reviews of video game movies that I've done in the past. So it's going to be kind of a big deal. I might - MIGHT! - add a review of Resident Evil: Extinction to "Sutton At The Arcade," but that's only if I can find a decent enough download of it after the movie is released in a few weeks. It just depends on my luck, and how quick the movie pirates can hook me up with exactly what I'd be looking for.
Anyway, you can look forward to "Sutton At The Arcade" one of these days, but have fun reading the new review in the here and now. I should have my recap of the Who Wants To Be A Superhero? finale up around this time tomorrow, so you can be anticipating that. And that's about it for this one.
Monday, September 10, 2007; 5:53 p.m.
I've been thinking about jumping back into the world of Resident Evil 4 lately. I don't really need to, since I've already beaten it ten times, along with at least five victories in the "Assignment Ada" game and six-figure scores in each level of "The Mercenaries." It's too bad I don't have a PS2 or a Wii, because I'd love to try my hand at that "Separate Ways" mini-game. But since I'm currently without either console, the Gamecube version is all I have to work with.
I will say, though, that I've been working to improve my scores on The Mercenaries, but I've hardly made it so much as close to my current highs. I guess I should be happy to have gotten 100,000 points in each level as it is, but after seeing those YouTube videos where guys are scoring at least 500,000 points can really knock a man's ego down a a few pegs. Though I could probably still go through the main game again and see where that takes me, or pick up that round on the Professional level I started a few months ago and never got around to finishing. I got up to the fight with Krauser near the end and got stuck, and every attempt I've made since was like hitting a brick wall. But it wouldn't hurt me to try and go back and try to make another attempt or two, right?
Yeah, I think I could jump right back into the game sometime. I should probably pick up one of the other five Resident Evil games too, since I don't believe I've played any of them all the way through in at least a year. And I do love me some Resident Evil, so whatever game I end up playing will be good times.
Saturday, September 8, 2007; 10:50 p.m.
I know I've said I want to post more than once or twice a week like I have been, but it's rough when you don't have a whole lot to talk about. I guess I need to work on that.
But I think another part of it is that I've been taking on quite a few projects all at once lately. I've got a new review I'm currently in the middle of writing, I've put a little work into another few reviews I'm planning on doing in the near future, and I've got those nine reviews for "Sutton At The Arcade" lined up within the next few weeks. And when you throw in the number of reviews I'm planning on writing after those, you're looking at somebody that's piling on too many projects at once. Counting the current one and "Sutton At The Arcade," I've got somewhere in the neighborhood of twenty potential reviews lined up before I can take a real break. I'm almost glad I'm an amateur, otherwise I'd probably have a lot more on my schedule. (Though at least I'd get paid for professional reviewing.)
Regardless, I am really looking forward to working on all the things I've got lined up, no matter how much effort I might have to put into it. I try to stay dedicated to my craft, if anything. Plus talking about all that work gives me reason to do a post or two.
Wednesday, September 5, 2007; 12:11 a.m.
I guess I'll have to take time out of checking out the Heroes DVD set to do my weekly reviews of Who Wants To Be A Superhero?. The season is wrapping up, as we've narrowed the contestants to the final four. I'll save the small talk for the end, since I've got a review to get to.
The episode opens with Stan telling the superheroes will receive their next set of orders in code. He tells them that their first code is so elementary, that they'll have to solve it at an elementary school. Again, like last year, they're going to be involved with a group of fourth graders. Each hero is given a multiple choice quiz, and each answer will give them a particular letter of the alphabet needed to reveal the code. They have to split up into groups with the kids, and since time is of the essence, they only have five minutes to decode the message.
So they break up into four. Parthenon is the first to finish, but he does ninety-nine percent of the work himself and barely gets the kids involved as all. (He was quoted as saying, "This challenge could have been called 'Are You Smarter Than A Fourth Grader?,' and I believe I am." Damn, dude, that's cold.) The other three make sure to get the kids as involved as possible, to the point that Hygena finished her part of the code with only thirty-nine seconds left just to make sure the kids in her group were involved.
Their message gives them directions to an intersection that leads them to a park, but when they arrive Doctor Dark and Stan's evil clone hijack their communicators and decide they're gonna screw around with the heroes. Evil Stan gives the heroes random embarrassing tasks to perform, and not knowing the difference between the two Stans, they all blindly obey. Most notably: the Defuser liberates a number of hats from their owners and asks a random bystander how to resolve a "super-wedgie;" Hygena does a song-and-dance routine before trying to stop traffic; Hyper-Strike starts snooping through peoples' belongings; and Parthenon borrows a mother's cane in order to dance a jig, before dumping the cane in a trash can. Though the Defuser gets suspicious and Hygena thinks the orders are odd, nothing comes of it.
Evil Stan eventually sends them to an abandoned warehouse, where he tells them that Good Stan's stolen pencil was inside a shipping container. Hygena discovers the pencil, but the container's doors slam shut and Doctor Dark reveals his scheme. He gives them sixty minutes to escape, otherwise he'll dispose of them. Using random objects inside and around the container along with pieces of their costumes, Hyper-Strike and Parthenon come up with a plan that leads the four to their escape in the nick of time.
As they return to the lair, Good Stan assures the heroes that it's really him and asks them to fill out their mission reports. Revealed in this report:
Stan calls the heroes to the rooftop for the next elimination. He reprimands them for not even bothering to question the orders they were given by Evil Stan, and calls to the chopping block are Hygena (for her continued meekness, as well as being a traffic hazard), Parthenon (for his pushiness, and failing to bond with the children); and Hyper-Strike (for telling the kids his real name). Though in his defense, that was an attempt to teach the kids to not be ashamed of who they are. It is Parthenon who is asked to turn in his costume, as Stan reveals that exactly zero of the schoolchildren liked him.
And as the episode comes to a close, Doctor Dark enlarges Evil Stan to gigantic proportions and unleashes him upon the city. So not only is he an evil clone of Stan Lee, but he's also Stanzilla. Maybe they need to have him fight with a Mothra-ized evil Jack Kirby clone, or an evil Frank Miller clone that looks like Rodan. Or how about turning an evil Alan Moore clone into a three-headed dragon like King Ghidorah? Throw in MechaStanzilla, and it'd be a nerd's dream movie.
So now we're getting down to the nitty gritty, as we're within the final three. The next episode will be the last of the season, a two-hour conclusion that will feature the three remaining heroes getting their own action figures, a cameo from ECW star Balls Mahoney, and - most importantly - the announcement of the winner. And since it's a double-length episode, I'm sure it'll be a double-length recap. So you can be looking forward to that. All three would be great winners, but personally, I'm pulling for Hyper-Strike.
It's not too late for them to give a comic book to Major Victory from last season, is it?
Tuesday, September 4, 2007; 2:43 p.m.
I believe it's safe to say that I'm in a pretty good mood right now. Why, you may ask? I just got the first season of Heroes in the mail from Amazon.com about fifteen minutes ago. Considering that the suggested retail price is 60 bucks, and that most places are probably offering it for 45 or 50, I'm pretty satisfied that it only set me back $37.25.
But yeah, I think I'm going to be stuck in front of the television for the next few days, watching all the stuff in this set. Even if it was just all the episodes lumped together on a couple of bare-bones DVDs, it'd still be worthy of a purchase. The show's that good.
The new season starts three weeks from yesterday, and I'm totally looking forward to that. It makes me wish I had a TiVo (or a DVR in general, for that matter), so I wouldn't have to wait a day or two to download it because I decided to watch Monday Night Raw instead, but eh, what can you do?
So I'm going to go enjoy my new DVD set. I haven't even watched any of it yet, but I nonetheless have to quote the great philosopher Ferris Bueller: "If you have the means, I highly recommend picking one up."
Monday, September 3, 2007; 4:27 p.m.
As promised on Saturday, here's my newest review. This one's for Clint Eastwood's Mystic River, which I loved and gave an extremely positive critique. I just hope that it turned out to be a good read.
So go check it out, and enjoy your Labor Day.
Saturday, September 1, 2007; 11:30 p.m.
My writing is coming a lot slower than I assumed it would, which is kind of a bummer now that I think about it. I got a movie in from Netflix a week ago, and I think I've gone two or three days now without adding so much as a word to that review I've been working on. I really should quit slacking off and finish it up. The thing is that I'm actually almost done with it, too; I've only got two paragraphs plus the conclusion left to write, which really shouldn't be too tough. If I really sit down to work, I might be able to knock that out in the next day or two. I hopefully won't leave it sitting around another week, since I've got other movies in my Netflix queue I'd like to see.
And I still can't hype the upcoming "Sutton At The Arcade" event enough. I currently have two of the movies in my possession thanks to Wal-Mart's discount racks, and the rest currently occupy spots four through ten in my Netflix queue, so they'll certainly be coming soon. I'm not sure whether or not I really want to set a particular target date for all three of you readers to expect them, but I'm hoping I can get them done no later than Halloween. Or maybe Thanksgiving. Could be Christmas if I take my time. I'll at least have them done between now and the beginning of 2008.
Friday, August 31, 2007; 10:08 p.m.
Well, I just got home a little while ago from seeing Rob Zombie's remake of John Carpenter's classic Halloween. And while I think that it's safe to say that it's better than some of the lame sequels (yeah, I'm looking at you, Halloween: Resurrection), I don't know if I'd say it was all that great of a remake.
I really want to talk about what I liked and didn't like about it, but I'm afraid that I'd spoil things for people. And unless I'm talking about a Uwe Boll movie, I'd like to avoid as many spoilers as I can. But the truth of the matter is that my feelings in regards to the movie are quite mixed. It's as if the movie's a cross between "Michael Myers: The Early Years" and "John Carpenter's the impression that Zombie wanted to do his own thing, but got so Halloween: The Greatest Hits"; I certainly got swept up in doing homages and references to bits from the original movie that he lost sight of doing things his way.
There are things that work in this remake, but there are just as many things that fail as well. It's at least worth a watch; it's disappointing when held up to the absolutely fantastic original film (my review of which you can read here), but it's not an awful movie. It's probably on par with the remake of Black Christmas, so if you liked that, you'd probably like Halloween '07 five for now, but I'll probably pass a final judgment once I get a too. I guess if I had to rate it, I'd give it a three out of chance to see it again.
I also feel like I should point out that I've acquired a copy of the bootlegged workprint version of the movie, which I plan on sitting down and watching at the next available opportunity. I know that the ending is different, and that there's plenty of other differences between that and the version I saw tonight. Looking forward to checking that out.
Wednesday, August 29, 2007; 12:21 a.m.
Alright, it's time once again for my recap of the most recent episode of Who Wants To Be A Superhero?, the Sci-Fi Channel's wacky pseudo-reality show where regular people are striving to be the next big superhero. Let's not waste any time and get right to the show.
The episode begins with the heroes receiving a news report that stats Doctor Dark is diverting electricity from all over town, causing rolling blackouts. Stan informs them that he's discovered the power is being directed toward a power station on the outskirts of town. When the five heroes arrive at the power station, they're told that if they hope to stop Doctor Dark, they must individually crawl through a tunnel into a darkened room and remove five fuses.
But there's two catches. One is that they only have six minutes in which to do it, and the second is that the room contains things that the heroes are afraid of. So the room has rats, snakes, and spiders, in it, plus it's a bit claustrophobic to boot. They do succeed, and end up getting the job done with five seconds to spare. To commend their bravery, Stan sends them to a Mexican restaurant for a night on the town. And humorously, the night ends with the heroes working off the bill thanks to a lack of money.
The next day, Doctor Doom decides that he's going to borrow a trick from last season's villain, The Dark Enforcer, and reveal a few embarrassing secrets of each hero. And that he does. Those secrets are...
After these revelations come out, Stan decides it's time for the heroes to fill out their mission reports. Revealed in the mission reports: The Defuser and Parthenon are believed to be the strongest, Whip-Snap overreacts under pressure, Hygena underperforms, and over half think that Whip-Snap is the least heroic. Notably, Hyper-Strike pulls Whip-Snap aside and admits to saying he thought she was the weakest contestant, saying that the only reason he told her was because he felt it could encourage her to perform better.
And now it is time for the elimination ceremony. Called up to the chopping block are the Defuser, because Stan believed he disrespected himself by giving a fan a piece of his costume at the Mexican restaurant; Whip-Snap, whose self-doubt seems to be getting the best of her; and Hygena, because her fears have negatively affected her performance. Ultimately, it is Whip-Snap who is sent home.
With the episode coming to an end, we see that Doctor Dark managed to siphon enough power to bring his evil Stan Lee clone to life. Awesome, they're doing a Bizarro Stan after all.
That's it for this episode. There are only two or three more episodes left after this one, so I think things might be heading into the home stretch within the next few weeks. Things are starting to heat up too, now that we're down to just four contestants. The ones that are left have all grown on me as the season's gone on, so I'd be satisfied with any of them winning. We'll just have to see how it goes, won't we?
Thursday, August 23, 2007; 10:56 p.m.
I figure I might as well do a post that doesn't involve me recapping the latest Who Wants To Be A Superhero? episode, since it feels like I'm doing more of the recaps than I am anything else. I need to get around to doing more posts, anyway. So let's talk about some stuff, shall we?
All I've really got to talk about is my writing projects, truth be told. The preparation for "Sutton At The Arcade" is coming along relatively smoothly, and after I finish up the small handful of reviews I have in front of it, I'll jump right into the thick of those video game movies. I'm really looking forward to "Sutton At The Arcade" too, since it'll afford me the opportunity to watch some movies I haven't seen in a while or that I've been wanting to see to begin with. (I'm particularly anticipating watching the Super Mario movie again, to be perfectly honest about it.)
I've also been making plans for a big review after that big batch. I may or may not have mentioned in the past that I wasn't sure how I was going to review Grindhouse, since it's being divided into two parts - with extra footage and without all the gimmicks from the theatrical release - for the DVD release. Now I've actually come up with an idea that I'd like to believe is pretty novel. I'm trying to download Grindhouse as we speak, and if it turns out okay, my idea is to review Grindhouse, then review the separate, extended cuts of Planet Terror and Death Proof once I can acquire the DVDs. I'm sure there'd be plenty of overlapping in the reviews, but I think it'll be neat to turn this one double feature into three reviews. So I just hope that this torrent of Grindhouse I'm downloading is watchable, so I won't feel like I've wasted my time. Know what I mean?
And I believe that's all I've got for this one. Hopefully, I'll be able to work something into another post between now and my next Who Wants To Be A Superhero? recap. Since I really should post more often, shouldn't I?
Thursday, August 23, 2007; 10:56 p.m.
I figure I might as well do a post that doesn't involve me recapping the latest Who Wants To Be A Superhero? episode, since it feels like I'm doing more of the recaps than I am anything else. I need to get around to doing more posts, anyway. So let's talk about some stuff, shall we?
All I've really got to talk about is my writing projects, truth be told. The preparation for "Sutton At The Arcade" is coming along relatively smoothly, and after I finish up the small handful of reviews I have in front of it, I'll jump right into the thick of those video game movies. I'm really looking forward to "Sutton At The Arcade" too, since it'll afford me the opportunity to watch some movies I haven't seen in a while or that I've been wanting to see to begin with. (I'm particularly anticipating watching the Super Mario movie again, to be perfectly honest about it.)
I've also been making plans for a big review after that big batch. I may or may not have mentioned in the past that I wasn't sure how I was going to review Grindhouse, since it's being divided into two parts - with extra footage and without all the gimmicks from the theatrical release - for the DVD release. Now I've actually come up with an idea that I'd like to believe is pretty novel. I'm trying to download Grindhouse as we speak, and if it turns out okay, my idea is to review Grindhouse, then review the separate, extended cuts of Planet Terror and Death Proof once I can acquire the DVDs. I'm sure there'd be plenty of overlapping in the reviews, but I think it'll be neat to turn this one double feature into three reviews. So I just hope that this torrent of Grindhouse I'm downloading is watchable, so I won't feel like I've wasted my time. Know what I mean?
And I believe that's all I've got for this one. Hopefully, I'll be able to work something into another post between now and my next Who Wants To Be A Superhero? recap. Since I really should post more often, shouldn't I?
Wednesday, August 22, 2007; 12:14 a.m.
Okey dokey folks, here's the recap of last Thursday's episode of Who Wants To Be A Superhero? for your reading pleasure.
As always, the episode picks up where the previous week's left off. The lair has been robbed, the secret identities of the heroes have been stolen, along with the pencil Stan Lee write his first comic with. Okay, two things. One, why was that pencil there and not at Stan's house up on his mantle? And two, would he even still have that thing in the first place? He wrote his first comic forty years ago. But anyway, the stress of the robbery causes Whip-Snap to have a breakdown. Since we can't go one episode this season without somebody being an emotional wreck.
Stan gets ahol of them the next morning, revealing that among the stolen goods was a check for 50,000 bucks from Esurance that was intended for the Friends of the Urban Forest charity. Again, why was that in their safe? What did that have to do with them at all? So it's up to the heroes to find the check. And to help them out, Stan is sending Erin Esurance their way to run intel. Yes, Erin Esurance, the pink-haired secret agent from the commercials. You hear that sound? That's the sound of a superhero dressed like Fonzie jumping over a shark on a motorcycle. Erin directs the heroes to a city thoroughfare, where a courier will be passing off the stolen items to one of Doctor Dark's henchmen. Their mission: to find three pieces of clothing - a shirt or jacket, pants, and shoes - to form a disguise, then intercept the courier (with the code phrase, "I need ears, can I have yours?") within fifteen minutes.
So the heroes go about tracking down their disguises, but as soon as they acquire them, they're given another mission: a lady walking around asking for her missing child. Just like last season's debut episode, we've got a challenge involving a lost kid. Of course, the heroes are supposed to help the lady, naturally.
Anyway, Partheon ends up finding the courier and retrieves the package, but finds that the pencil wasn't in there. Oh well, at least they have the Esurance check and their secret identities, and two out of three isn't bad. As they leave, Stan sends them to a comic book shop (with various Dark Horse comics subtly highlighted in the background), and presents them with poster-sized versions of their own comic covers. They also get some kind words from Dark Horse's president too.
They get back to the lair and start discussing their searches for their disguises. Defuser brings up the lady with the missing kid, and he and the others all mention that they thought helping her was the most heroic thing... except for Basura, who feels kinda stupid since she blew the lady off. Stan butts in after a while and reveals that since Parthenon found the courier, he gets to call home. He also gets to choose another hero to call home, too. He ends up choosing Hygena, and they make their calls home; Parthenon to his boyfriend, while Hygena calls her husband. After the calls, it's time for the heroes to do their mission reports, in which we learn that the heroes believe that the Defuser is too quick to seize control, and that Defuser believes that both Whip-Snap is missing something and that Hyper-Strike hasn't come out of his shell yet. Man, Defuser's a real dick.
But now it's time to cut somebody. On the chopping block are Basura, for failing to help the woman and for not being very assertive; Defuser, for being a jerk to the others; and Hygena, who spent too much time cleaning off her disguise before putting it on. Unfortunatly, leaving the lair is Basura, thus killing the show's cleavage factor. The weird thing is that after turning in her costume, she looks like Ugly Betty. In a good way, I mean. As the episode ends, we see that Doctor Dark has successfuly obtained Stan's DNA from the stolen pencil. Could that mean Bizarro Stan Lee? I hope so.
So after this whole Erin Esurance thing, I really believe the show has come dangerously close to jumping the shark. Maybe that's just because I friggin' hate Esurance commercials. Seriously, if I had the bad luck of going to Hell, I'd be strapped down and forced to watch Esurance, Zwinky, and HeadOn commercials for eternity. But shark jumping or not, I'll still be tuning in for the rest of the episode. I just have to see how it ends.
Monday, August 20, 2007; 2:25 a.m.
Oh man, it feels like I haven't posted here in forever. Just haven't had anything to say since Wednesday, I guess. I should really work on that.
But I would like to take a little bit of your time and share my brand new review of TMNT. It's only the second animated movie I've ever reviewed (after The Incredibles), so I'd say it's something special. So go check it out, won't you?
Other than that, there's not really much worth talking about. There isn't a whole lot going on around Sutton HQ. I've spent a little time preparing for my "Sutton At The Arcade" thing, which I'm totally looking forward to. But other than that, there's not much to speak of.
And this is all I've got. Wish I had more, but that sort of thing happens, I guess.
Wednesday, August 15, 2007; 11:14 p.m.
It's recently come to my attention that some people are friggin' stupid.
I say that because I just finished reading this story. Apparently, some nutjob in a South Carolina penitentiary is suing Michael Vick for, and I quote, "$63,000,000,000 billion" dollars. You read that right, sixty-three billion billion dollars. Why? Because the nutjob claims Vick sold his dogs on eBay and used the money to purchase missiles from Iran. He also accuses Vick of all kinds of other insane things, including violating several constitutional amendments and other things that I can't repeat because just thinking about them makes me laugh too hard to type. Sir Nutjob wants the money backed by gold and silver, and delivered via UPS to the front gates of the prison. And he wrote the whole thing out by hand too (which you can check out here).
So either this is the best thing to ever happen in the history of time, or the gene pool needs a little more chlorine.
Wednesday, August 15, 2007; 2:12 a.m.
Now that I've gotten that Who Wants To Be A Superhero? recap out of the way, you can now go check out my review of Hollywoodland.
Yeah, I've decided not to review The Black Dahlia for now. So sue me. I'll probably get around to it one of these days, I've just got movies that I'd like to review more right now. I've got at least three, maybe four, movies lined up before I start in on that "Sutton At The Arcade" thing I was talking about in my post last Friday. And then I've got a few in the queue after that, so you can say my plate is pretty much full.
I really take on too much at one time when it comes to these things.
Wednesday, August 15, 2007; 12:14 a.m.
Okay, everybody, I guess it's about time I do my recap of the third episode of the second season of Who Wants To Be A Superhero?.
The episode opens just after last week's elimination, with the heroes reflecting on Mindset getting cut. Ms. Limelight comes right out and says she's glad he's gone. Damn, man, that's cold. The following morning, they're awakened and set to Six Flags Magic Mountain, where Doctor Dark is lurking. Wait a second, I thought Doctor Dark was really Stan Lee pretending to be a supervillain. Remember that in the first episode? No? Bueller?
Anyway, the heroes have to split into four teams of two...
One member of each team has to ride a particular roller coaster and relay those colors to their teammate. The teammate then has to find four keys, one for each color. Once all four teams unlock the locks those keys go to, Doctor Dark will be found.
All four teams succeed, but it turns out that Doctor Dark was just hiding on a monitor. Psyche! The heroes return to the lair, discovering a note from the good doctor that there may be a mole amongst their ranks. This leads to a big discussion among them about why they're there, with Mr. Mitzvah not really opening up. Stan pops up eventually, announcing that the heroes will be giving him mission reports on the other heroes.
Mr. Mitzvah steps out of the room for a moment afterwards, so the seven remaining start discussing what to do about his antisocial behavior. So they're staging an intervention because he isn't as gabby as the others? That's dirty pool right there. So when he comes back, they start reading him the riot act when he gets back, and he defends his being quiet by saying that people shouldn't be talking just to hear themselves speak. Burn!
It's about that time that Stan reveals the results of the mission reports. Turns out that the heroes thought that Whip-Snap and Mr. Mitzvah would have made better sidekicks, and that they all have their own suspicions as to who the mole could be. But enough of that, it's time for the elimination ceremony. Stan calls Mr. Mitzvah, Basura, and Ms. Limelight up to the chopping block, cutting Mr. Mitzvah because of his repeated failure to overcome his fears. But as they start to clear out, Stan is all "get back here, we're cutting somebody else." Stan has Hyper-Strike replace Mr. Mitzvah on the chopping block, but ends up cutting Ms. Limelight because he felt she couldn't perform under pressure.
As they return to the lair, they find that their safe has been opened and that the papers revealing their secret identities have been stolen. Oh, snap.
That's a heck of an ending. I'm bummed that they cut Mr. Mitzvah and Ms. Limelight, but I have a sneaking suspicion that Mr. Mitzvah may be back as a villain. He'd have the motivation to turn evil, since all the others ganged up on him. Plus he said we haven't seen the last of him as he walked away. Maybe I'm jumping to conclusions, but it could happen. Remember the Iron/Dark Enforcer from last season?
So that's it for the recap. Can't wait for the next episode.
Friday, August 10, 2007; 7:54 p.m.
As mentioned in my post on Tuesday, I've got a review of Hollywoodland in the works. Got it in the mail from Netflix this afternoon, so you can expect it within a week or two. I'm still unsure whether or not I'm going to review The Black Dahlia, but I'll give it a watch, see if I want to do a write-up of it.
I also have my next big project set in stone: a series of reviews of movies based on or involving video games in some fashion, which I'm calling "Sutton At The Arcade." On deck are the Mortal Kombat movies, the Tomb Raider movies, Street Fighter, and Super Mario Bros., along with gaming-oriented movies The Wizard, Stay Alive, and Brainscan. Netflix didn't have Double Dragon or Wing Commander, so unfortunately, I won't be able to do those. I'd probably end up giving them bad reviews anyway.
Speaking of bad reviews, I almost included the direct-to-video House of the Dead 2 among the "Sutton At The Arcade" movies, but since they're doing direct-to-video sequels to BloodRayne and Alone in the Dark, I feel almost feel obligated to do those three reviews as a triple feature all to themselves. The Alone in the Dark sequel apparently won't be out until sometime next year, so it'll be a while. But boy, am I ever looking forward to seeing those three.
But of the nine movies I've compiled for "Sutton At The Arcade," I think the one I'm least looking forward to is Brainscan. I haven't seen it in maybe ten or twelve years, but I do remember being pretty dumb. I remember that, and I remember thinking Brainscan's villain was a cheap Freddy Krueger wannabe. I just hope that if it's as lame as I remember it being, that it'll make for an entertaining review to read.
But before we get there, I've got maybe four or five other reviews lined up in front of them. But I'll get around to them sooner or later.
Wednesday, August 8, 2007; 12:04 a.m.
As promised, here's my recap of the second episode of the second season of Who Wants To Be A Superhero?. Let's get into it, shall we?
The episode begins right after last week's elimination, and it appears being on the chopping block has left Ms. Limelight especially bummed. The Defuser does his best to cheer her up (including making a pact with her to go twenty-four hours without saying "I'm scared" or "I'm afraid"), but then Mindset goes and tells her that he thinks she's either putting on an act or is a total ditz. She gets upset to the point of tears, and the others - Whip-Snap, especially - make a point of sticking up for her and comforting her.
But the nine remaining superheroes can't sit around for long, because there's a supervillain on the loose. You know that bee-related hero I mentioned in the last episode review? Yeah, her. She's Bee-Sting, and the heroes have to go round her up. But as they arrive at her last known whereabouts, they're trapped and split into teams. They're forced into a spelling bee competition, with the idea being that each word has the syllable "be" in it, and that it had to be spelled "b-e-e."
The winning team will be the one to get three words right, and for every wrong word, a thousand bees will be dumped into the chamber holding that team. I guess every supervillain needs to have a gimmick. But Mindset thinks the whole thing is dumb, spells a word without the bee gimmick, and proclaims, "That is how it is spelled. I will not play your games." So yeah, a thousand bees for his team. But as the heroes eventually finish the challenge, Bee-Sting gets the last laugh by dumping a few hundred gallons of honey on them. Alrighty then. (Though it does lead to a funny line, when Basura calls Bee-Sting a "bee-itch.")
The nine heroes return to their abode, and the following morning, Stan calls them up and tells them to suit up and meet him in the game room in fifteen minutes. Of course, their costumes have all been ruined, and some are even missing pieces somehow. And by "missing pieces," I mean that Mr. Mitzvah shows up without any pants. How do you not remember to pack at least one change of pants when you go away for a few weeks to tape a reality show? So the heroes all end up meeting in the game room, looking like the Jonestown massacre was held at the San Diego Comic-Con. The reason Stan has called them there is because he wants them to describe their characters and their powers to him. Wasn't that what the auditions were for? I mean, how do you audition potential superheroes and not have the topic of their powers come up? The whole thing ends up being Stan deciding what he feels their powers should be, since Ms. Limelight went first and had absolutely no clue what her powers were. Yeah... okay.
So Stan tells them all what their new powers are, and announces that since they "look like hell," he was going to give them new costumes. And even though the new costumes are pretty much of the same quality as the ones they created in the first place, they all dig them. Except for Hyper-Strike that is. Stan ends up blowing him off when he complains, so it doesn't really matter what he thinks.
But now it's time for an elimination, and the heroes all meet on the roof. Called to the chopping block are Ms. Limelight (for not knowing her own powers), Mr. Mitzvah (for not facing his fear of bees during the challenge), and Mindset (for being rude to Ms. Limelight, and because his refusal to play by Bee-Sting's rules put his team in jeopardy). Mindset ends up getting the axe, and he ain't happy. He defends himself by saying that a real hero would live with suffering minor bodily harm instead of playing by the villain's rules. Though would a real hero insult a fellow hero? Anyway, Mindset turns in his costume, and he's gone. The remaining eight heroes leave the roof, and are promptly presented with communicators. And in the final seconds, it seems that Doctor Dark and Bee-Sting are going to team up. Wait, I thought Doctor Dark was just Stan Lee in a mask?
So yeah, I don't know what to say about this. Unlike last season, in which are the contestants were all interesting in their own ways, I'm having a hard time really finding anybody to cheer for. I like a few of them, but the rest... meh. Hopefully, I'll change my mind by the end of the season, because I want to like this season's cast. There's apparently a mole that will make its presence known in the next episode, and I don't think it will be as obvious as Rotiart last season. ("Traitor" backwards? That's still lame.) Maybe this mole will shake things up a bit?
Tuesday, August 7, 2007; 8:57 p.m.
Got a new review up, something you guys can spend your Tuesday evening reading. So check out my review of Hot Fuzz, and go watch the movie if you haven't seen it yet.
I also picked up the DVD of TMNT about an hour ago, and I'm hoping to do a review of it soon. I'm also expecting to receive Hollywoodland from Netflix later this week, so you can look forward to that sometime within the next few weeks. I believe I mentioned something like this before, but I've been considering doing a double feature of Hollywoodland and The Black Dahlia, which is next in my Netflix queue. They have similar plots and their theatrical release dates were only a week apart, but I'm not sure whether or not I really want to review The Black Dahlia. We'll just see how it goes.
But I'm gonna go watch a little of that DVD now, so I'm gonna wrap this up. I'll probably have another post later, since I realized that I haven't gotten the second episode of Who Wants To Be A Superhero? reviewed yet. The Sci-Fi Channel is airing a rerun of it at 11:00, so I think I might get that review done at about midnight. So I'll hopefully get that done then, so stay tuned.
Monday, August 6, 2007; 12:23 a.m.
Just finished reading the last issue of Watchmen a few minutes ago. Oh my, was that some great stuff. I mean, it's just some amazing reading from the first issue to the last. And the whole thing, when put together... wow.
I really can't wait for the movie to come out in 2009. Considering where society has gone since the 9/11 attacks, the whole twist at the end couldn't be more relevant. I mean, I'm not one of these wacko conspiracy theorists or anything, but still. So yeah, we've got about a year and a half to wait before Watchmen: The Motion Picture is released, but considering that I heard filming was supposed to end by sometime in February, I wouldn't be surprised if the first trailer is in front of The Dark Knight next summer.
Anyway, Alan Moore's Watchmen gets a thumbs up. My only complaint was that weird "Tales of the Black Freighter" comic-within-a-comic was a real distraction, and I didn't feel like it had much of a payoff, either. But eh, that's just me. Still, thumbs up for Watchmen. Go check it out, if you haven't yet.
How about a quick mini-review to pass the time?
I got Superman 2: The Richard Donner Cut in the mail from Netflix today, which I just finished watching a few minutes ago. And I have to say that it's quite an interesting watch. The changes are obvious and the movie's real selling point, and it makes me wonder just how the Superman movie franchise would have turned out had this movie been the one released in theaters instead of Richard Lester's version. I don't know if I could say which of the two versions is better, but both of them are quite good and I recommend both the Donner and Lester cuts of the movie. If I had to give it a star rating, I'd give Superman 2: The Richard Donner Cut four stars. It's definitely worth a look, for sure.
Wednesday, August 1, 2007; 8:47 p.m.
Along with all the comic reading, I've also been making some additions to my DVD collection. I pre-ordered the first season of Heroes from Amazon yesterday, and picked up Hot Fuzz as a blind buy this afternoon. I'd have gotten it yesterday when I was at the Wal-Mart in Lawrenceburg, but they only had three full-screen copies. I prefer widescreen DVDs, so I had to do without. My sister did find it for me today, the one widescreen copy that the Frankfort Wal-Mart had. So I got her to pick it up for me, and now I'm just waiting for an American release of Spaced, and I'm set. I haven't really gotten the opportunity to watch any of it yet, but since I loved Shaun of the Dead, I'm sure I'll love Hot Fuzz too. And I've also got my eye on the DVD of TMNT, which I'm totally planning to hunt down a copy of when it comes out next week.
But I'm really looking forward to the Heroes set. Amazon estimates that it won't ship until September 4th and I won't get it until another week or two after that, but it'll be forty bucks well spent when it does ship. It's one of these shows I can watch over and over, and I can't wait to get the DVD and for the second season to start. And if you don't watch Heroes, shame on you.
Wednesday, August 1, 2007; 2:37 p.m.
As I mentioned the other day, I managed to download Alan Moore's Watchmen comics after it came highly recommended from a few people. I've read the first six issues so far, and those people were right. Watchmen is an engrossing read, and I'm surprised it took me so long to get around to reading it.
Now I'm only six issues deep, as I said. But if the rest are as good as what I've read thus far, it'll be some fantastic stuff. I'm certainly looking forward to the Watchman movie now too. The art looks like the storyboards for a movie, so if it stays faithful to the books, a Watchmen movie will at least look amazing. It's a shame that it won't be released until 2009, though.
But I think I'd better get back to reading. I've got six more issues to cover, plus I downloaded copies of Amazing Fantasy #15, Amazing Spider-Man #121, and Amazing Spider-Man #129. I already have a physical copy of Amazing Spider-Man #129, which got reprinted and handed out at movie theaters when the Punisher movie came out a few years ago, but I don't have a problem reading a downloaded version of it too. And like I said the other day, I should probably download Preacher too, even if it is something like 75 issues long. I also want to try hunting down a few Batman comics, mainly The Long Halloween and The Dark Knight Returns. In any event, I'm going to be doing a lot of reading.
Monday, July 30, 2007; 11:09 p.m.
Howdy, folks. You doing good? I'm fine, thanks for asking.
Things around here are doing relatively well, as a matter of fact. I actually noticed the other day that we're three months and some change away from the MSX's sixth anniversary. Three months is a while, but time flies, so November will probably be here before we know it.
I don't really have anything else I wanted to talk about specifically, just felt like killing a little time. I'm actually in the process of downloading Alan Moore's Watchmen comics, which come highly recommended by a few comic book fans I know. I still need to get around to downloading Preacher one of these days too. Any comic book with a character named "Arseface" can't be too bad, can it?
I also downloaded Neil Gaiman's Death: The High Cost of Living and Death: The Time of Your Life last week, and I have to say I enjoyed them both immensely. It helps that I really like the Death character; after reading "The Sound of Her Wings" in Preludes & Nocturnes, it's kind of hard to dislike her. And I'm going to have to leave a Note To Self to go buy the TPB of The High Cost of Living sometime. Good reading, it is.
And that's all I've got. Later.
Saturday, July 28, 2007; 10:05 p.m.
Believe the hype: The Simpsons Movie is absolutely fantastic.
I mean, there's literally nothing bad I can say about the movie at all. I'd call it the movie of the year for sure, and probably the funniest movie I've ever seen. Ever. I mean that. Everything about it is hilarious, even the credits.
I'll give it four and a half stars and my highest recommendation, so go check it out. Right now. I mean it. Run, don't walk, to the closest theater right now and watch it. Seriously. Go now.
Friday, July 27, 2007; 4:08 p.m.
Last night saw the second season premiere of Who Wants to Be a Superhero? on the Sci-Fi Channel... and I missed it. Got caught up watching reruns of Supernatural and Justice League Unlimited, so I missed the first run and only got to see the second half-hour of the repeat airing at 11:00. I think that's the way it's going to be that way through the whole season, since I just can't bring myself to miss Supernatural or Justice League Unlimited, even if they are reruns. But thankfully, the Sci-Fi Channel just got done airing another rerun of it just now, so here's my recap as promised.
The episode opens with a quick recap of Feedback's victory last year, before segueing into a recap of this year's audition process. And not unlike American Idol's audition process, we get to see an awful lot of crap before we get to the real nitty gritty. But we eventually get things narrowed down to ten hopefuls...
The ten are taken to the lair from last season by Feedback himself, and as they get to know one another, they're soon greeted by Stan Lee himself. But as he welcomes them, he's interrupted by a new supervillain: Doctor Dark. Doctor Dark reveals that he's abducted Stan and has trapped him at a water plant, and that they must split up into two teams if they wish to rescue him.
The two teams of five are then stuck in separate aquaducts, and are given four minutes to open up a series of valves while turning off the wind and rain machines that are meant to slow them down. One team - comprised of Defuser, Ms. Limelight, Basura, Braid, and Parthenon - succeed with only thirty seconds left, while the other team - comprised of Hyper-Strike, Mindset, Mr. Mitzvah, Hygena, and Whip-Snap - are only successful once the time has expired. Doctor Dark shows up on nearby monitors, unmasking to reveal himself to be none other than Stan Lee. Turns out that he'd set the whole thing up as their first test. The whole thing leaves Whip-Snap distraught, blaming herself for their inability to accomplish the task because she slipped and fell during it.
The next morning, the superheroes are assembled and told that a local warehouse has been robbed. Each of them gets two minutes apiece to interview the warehouse's owner and find clues, but the guy spends more time wanting to know every little thing about the heroes and getting information from him ends up being like pulling teeth for them. Turns out this was a secret test too, to see how much they'd reveal about themselves when under pressure.
Leaving the warehouse, the group discovers that somebody's stolen the tires off their vehicles. Around them are a little old lady struggling to put her walker into her car, a delivery man struggling with some boxes, and a lost and frightened puppy. The secret objective was not to get the tires on their vehicles changed, but to help those around them. And while Whip-Snap and Hygena noticed and helped the old lady and only Parthenon helped the delivery man, none of them even noticed the puppy at all. Oh, believe me, Stan's going to give them crap for that.
At the elimination ceremony that evening, Mr. Mitsvah, Braid, and Ms. Limelight are called up to the chopping block. Stan defends his choices, claiming that Mr. Mitsvah was a little too rude to the warehouse owner and not very social around the other heroes, that Braid spent too much time talking about herself with the warehouse owner, and that Ms. Limelight saw the little old lady and completely ignored her. But in the end, citing that he felt she simply wasn't heroic enough, Stan asks Braid to turn in her costume. As the episode ends, we see a suspicious bee-loving lady who I suspect may be a new supervillain.
It wouldn't be fair to judge how the whole season will be on this one episode. I did that last season and I ended up really liking the show, so to think negatively of this one so far may be a bit presumptuous. But so far, I don't think I'm feeling the same vibe I got from the show last season. I'll give it the benefit of a doubt, though, and just like last season, we'll have to wait and see what happens next.
Wednesday, July 25, 2007; 10:56 p.m.
I've finished that new review I mentioned yesterday, so for your reading pleasure, I submit my review of Ghost Rider. Go check it out, won't you?
Working on this gave me the idea to do a mega-update of reviews of Nicolas Cage movies, since I have about nine or ten of them lined up in my Netflix queue. But I'm not completely sure if that's the next theme I want to undertake for S@TM, since I still want to do a theme centered around video game movies. It all depends on just how I feel at any given time.
We'll have to wait and see, I guess.
Tuesday, July 24, 2007; 10:44 p.m.
I spoke in my last post about working on a new project, and come Thursday night, I think I'll have another one to do. Y'see, the second season of Who Wants to Be a Superhero? starts Thursday, and I'm seriously considering recapping this season as I did last year's. My recaps of the first season seemed to be popular with all three of my readers, and they were a lot of fun to write, as perhaps you'll see their return in a few days. Besides, I was complaining about my lack of diverse discussion topics before, as this'll be something to help remedy that for a few weeks.
So yeah, look for recaps of Who Wants To Be A Superhero?'s second season starting this weekend. Hopefully this season will be as entertaining as the previous one.
Tuesday, July 24, 2007; 11:16 p.m.
I'm making some pretty decent progress on the next S@TM entry, thanks for asking. I think it's going to turn out well, but that's really up to all three of my readers to decide.
But anyway, things are moving as slow as always here at Sutton HQ. I've been making some progress on my New Year's resolution, slowly but surely, and hopefully I'll have something to show for it by the end of the year. I don't really want to extend that resolution into 2008, so I'm hoping to take care of this by the end of 2007. I don't think it'll take more than another couple of months anyway, so I'm hoping to be done sometime this autumn, depending on how it goes. But it'll get taken care of eventually, I'm sure of it.
Saturday, July 21, 2007; 3:58 a.m.
You know, I've got issues. What started as a simple bit of maintenance on my review of Cry Wolf the other night turned into a full-blown overhaul of thirty reviews that kept me up until 7:30 in the morning, then I woke up five hours later and worked on thirty more until 5:00 in the afternoon. Seriously, don't ask. All I'll tell you is that I have way too much time on my hands and not enough things to do with it.
But that's not what I was aiming to talk about. What I wanted to talk about was the made-for-television remake of Carrie, which I'm watching on the USA Network right now. If you didn't know, yeah, somebody did a remake of Carrie as a TV miniseries back in 2002. It's got Angela Bettis from May in the lead role, which is the most brilliant bit of casting I've seen in a long time. You'd think with her as Carrie, along with a few other notable names in the cast, the movie would turn out halfway decent, right? Outside of those two and maybe two or three really good scenes, there's really not a whole lot of reason to choose the remake over the original. Just because it's more faithful to the book doesn't mean it's any better. Of course, the fact that it was supposed to be the pilot for a TV show doesn't help things either.
See, I'd have no problem with another remake of Carrie if it were given the proper treatment. Of course, given how it turns out in the end, you'd probably have people complaining that it's going to inspire more violence from these idiots who want to load up on weapons like they were friggin' Rambo, march into the local school, and mow down thirty people. But since we live that kind of a society, a movie where a downtrodden, unloved misfit goes completely out of her gourd at the prom before wiping out half the town with her thoughts would make for a gripping social commentary if handled correctly.
I'm not saying I advocate a remake of Carrie. The original film is perfect the way it is, and the version I'm watching now (and that awful sequel that came out in 1999) really didn't need to be made. But if somebody decided to do a theatrical remake, I doubt I'd argue. As long as the movie didn't suck, that is.
Thursday, July 19, 2007; 3:03 a.m.
Have you noticed I've been cranking out plenty of reviews lately? What's it been, three in the last week or so? Four for the month of July? I say this because I've got another one to share: Quentin Tarantino's underrated gem Jackie Brown. So all I have left is Death Proof, and I'll have done all six of QT's movies. Though I do wonder how I'll review Death Proof. Do I review the extended DVD release all by itself? Do I do the theatrical release as half of one long review of Grindhouse? That's going to be a tough call. I'm leaning towards the double-length Grindhouse review, but it all depends on how I'm feeling when it comes time to do it.
Man, I shouldn't really be complaining about how I only talk about my reviews. I've been doing so many of them lately, it's all there's really been for me to talk about. I've got another one lined up as we speak. Thanks, Netflix. I'm going to jump into it as soon as possible, so you can be looking forward to that within the next day or two. Something like that.
Tuesday, July 17, 2007; 8:41 p.m.
I was watching some videos on YouTube a little while ago, and they gave me an idea for something I'd like to do one day. In these videos, this guy and a couple of his buddies got together and watched the ten Friday the 13th movies back to back, occasionally recording their thoughts as the marathon progressed. I'd love to do something like that, but since I don't have friends or a way to record videos on my computer, I'm out of luck.
I did, however, consider doing the marathon alone, and making the occasional post about it here at the MSX. That might be good for maybe ten or eleven posts over a period of about fifteen to seventeen hours (depending on whether or not I watch Freddy vs. Jason too). There might be room for more posts than that, I'm not sure. But I don't know how well something that would work, when I could just as easily just do some simple reviews for them over at S@TM. Know what I mean?
I might have to put a little thought into the whole thing. This is probably an idea that looks good on paper, but would probably work out better if I had a podcast or a video blog. (And I don't have either of those, in case you were wondering.) But what would you readers think about something like this? Any interest at all?
Tuesday, July 17, 2007; 1:24 a.m.
Howdy, folks. Welcome back to the MSX. I hope you enjoyed the two Ghostbusters reviews, because I've got one more review for you. This time, it's my views on the 1990 remake of Night of the Living Dead. Go check that out, and have fun reading.
I wish I had more to talk about besides just my reviews. But yeah, I kinda don't. Things move pretty slowly around here, and that leaves me without much of anything as far as content. Which is kind of a bummer, since I love posting here. I've kept this bad boy going for nearly six years, and I'd rather not let a lack of content bring it down. So I'll promise to work on fixing that if you promise to keep reading.
Hopefully I can come up with something else to read besides saying "I did a new review." I'd just open up an S@TM blog if I wanted to do that. But it shouldn't be too hard... should it?
Sunday, July 15, 2007; 8:00 p.m.
Remember me mentioning that I was working on a review, and that there was a chance that I might eventually do its sequel as well? Well, I finished up both movies this afternoon, and I've got them up and ready for the world - by which I mean all two of my readers - to check out. So without further ado, go read my reviews of Ghostbusters and Ghostbusters II. Have fun reading 'em.
Friday, July 13, 2007; 3:56 p.m.
Happy Friday the 13th, folks. I'm a little bummed because it turns out I'm going to have to miss that midnight show tonight. But eh, c'est la vie.
Anyway, I just finished reading Mystic River a few minutes ago. Despite its flaws, I thought it was really something else. The ending was a real bummer and not a lot felt resolved, but I still think it's some fine reading.
Now that I've finished the novel, I think I may have liked the movie a wee bit more. Of course, that's just going by the small spots of the movie that I actually remember. I really should get around to watching the movie again sometime. It's on my Netflix queue, somewhere around the top ten or fifteen, so it'll probably be sometime soon. Looking forward to that.
But thumbs up for Dennis Lehane's Mystic River. Check it out.
Thursday, July 12, 2007; 10:54 p.m.
I've got somewhere in the neighborhood of five chapters left to read of Mystic River, and I'll be glad to be done with it once I get past those. It's not that the book is bad; it's actually pretty good. But I just can't handle all these pages falling out. It's gone past bothersome and is heading for just plain annoying.
But regardless, it's still a good read. The only really bad thing is that the book is something of a "whodunit," and having seen the movie, I already know the ending. Though I guess they couldn't have gotten away with changing the book's ending like Fight Club. But whatever. Despite already knowing the ending, I'm still looking forward to seeing how these final five chapters turn out. The book has to be back this weekend, but I believe I can breeze through the rest with no problem.
So we'll have final thoughts on Mystic River in the next few days, I think. We'll see.
Thursday, July 12, 2007; 5:26 p.m.
In case you haven't looked at your calendar lately, tomorrow is Friday the 13th. And as a horror movie fan, it's probably the second-biggest day of the year after Halloween. But unfortunately, I'm not exactly sure yet what kind of plans I've got for tomorrow.
It's become something of a tradition here at Sutton HQ for yours truly to watch one or two of the Friday the 13th movies on DVD. I'll probably end up watching my personal favorite, Part 6: Jason Lives, but I miss the days where half a dozen channels would run two or three Friday the 13th movies back to back. Nowadays, I'm lucky if some random channel like AMC shows one of the crappy ones. Sure, I own all of them on DVD and all but two on VHS, but I grew up watching them on television. All the good parts might be chopped up - if not completely edited out - on television, but there's something entertaining about watching them on TV.
But like I said, I'm not sure exactly what else I'm going to do tomorrow. Normally I'd just hang out all day and watch some DVDs, but something has come up that I might have to get involved in. I mentioned around this time last month that there's an art house theater up in Lexington that runs weekly midnight movies during the summer months, and they've got the first Friday the 13th movie lined up for tomorrow night. I haven't seen any of the first nine Friday the 13th movies on the big screen, so I'm trying to call in a few favors so I can get up there. Seeing the original on a Friday the 13th would be pretty darn awesome. Plus I haven't been to a midnight movie in almost a year, and I've got the jones to see another one.
Nothing is set in stone yet, and I doubt anything will be before 5:00 tomorrow afternoon. But if I'm forced to miss it, at least I've still got the DVDs. And that's better than nothing.
We'll just have to see how things go.
Monday, July 9, 2007; 6:43 p.m.
Howdy, folks. I'm not really working on any projects right now, and I don't have a whole lot in general to talk about. Just felt like posting and shooting the breeze for a while. I've said a million times before that I'm not quite fond of doing these little nothing posts, but hey, sometimes you've got to to do what you've got to do in order to better the blog post counts.
Anyway, I could probably stand to get back into the project I was working on prior to starting my X3 review. I'm almost done with it, actually, so I probably don't have to spend all that much time working on it. So that's a big plus, I guess. This particular project also has a sequel that I'd like to do a write-up of sometime, but I still haven't decided if I'm going to start on that immediately after the current project post them together as a double feature, or if I'll just post the first part as soon as I get it done before taking my time with the second one. No big deal either way, but it's something for me to think about before I jump too deep back into the writing game.
The projects never end here at Casa de Sutton, folks. Isn't that always how things go?
Saturday, July 7, 2007; 10:19 p.m.
Went and caught Transformers tonight in Danville. I was never all that much of a fan of the robots in disguise, with that and G.I. Joe being the two '80s pop culture phenomenons that I never really got into. But because the commercials had me hooked and I'm a lover of anything and everything '80s, I just had to go see it.
And I thought it was fantastic. The movie is incredibly light on plot, but everything else makes for an incredibly entertaining movie. I mean, what's wrong with going to the movies just to have a little fun? Not every movie has to be some artsy-fartsy pretentious crap. The comedy is funny, the effects are amazing, and the action is exciting. I really have nothing bad at all to say about Transformers. I'd go see it a second time if I got the opportunity. It's that rockin'.
So four stars for Transformers. Oh yeah.
Saturday, July 7, 2007; 1:36 a.m.
Just finished up a new review for S@TM. So go check out my write-up of X-Men: The Last Stand. Have fun reading.
Wednesday, July 4, 2007; 1:14 p.m.
Yeah, that copy of Mystic River is falling apart on me, alright. I was turning a page yesterday, and it and a few other pages popped halfway out of thebinding. I'm afraid the whole thing is going to fall completely to pieces, then I'd probably have to pay for the library's replacement copy. And that's bad times.
I'm about fifty or so pages from halfway through, I think, and if things keeps going the way they are now, I'm going to have to put the second half of the book together like a jigsaw puzzle in order to make heads or tails of it. Isn't that always my luck?
So anyway, happy Independence Day, everybody. Or if you're one of my non-American readers, happy Wednesday.
Monday, July 2, 2007; 2:27 p.m.
So I've knocked out the first seven chapters of Mystic River, putting me right at 100 pages deep. And while I think the book is really good so far, I've noticed that the author has a propensity to go off on these side tangents - almost like glorified flashbacks - every so often. Yeah, it's good for defining character motivations and establishing a few whys and hows, but I'd kinda like to stick to the main narrative. I really don't need to have a description of a character's first date with his wife in the middle of a scene where that sort of thing couldn't possibly be relevant. But that complaint aside, it's not all that bad of a book.
And I think the Grayson County library needs to invest in a new copy of Mystic River, or work on the binding of this copy at the very least. I was flipping through some of the remaining pages, and a thirty-page chunk just fell out. The entire middle section of the book looks like it could fall out at any time, too. Just my luck, I get a book that, if it were a dog, would probably be put to sleep sooner or later. Maybe I can put it back together with some Scotch tape and hope nobody notices. Yeah... that's the ticket.
Friday, June 29, 2007; 3:23 a.m.
Okay, let's transition to a post that isn't as upsetting as the previous one. The more I look at that post about the Benoits, the more depressed I get.
I've jumped into a new book this week: Dennis Lehane's Mystic River. I absolutely loved the movie, so thanks to the fine people at the Washington County Public Library, I figured I'd give the novel a shot. I've finished the first three chapters, putting me about 35 pages deep, and although I haven't really gotten to the meat and potatoes of the story yet, it's been a pretty good read thus far. The next chapter is where things really start to pick up, which has me wondering just how close the movie stayed to the novel. Though I'm going to have to do the opposite of what I did with Cell and read it pretty darn quickly, since it's due back at the library next Friday because they had to get it on loan from the Grayson County library in Leitchfield. (Which was a surprise to me, since I don't believe I'd ever even heard of Leitchfield before.)
But I do know that if the book is even half as good as the movie, it's going to be pretty good. And thinking of it, I really need to get around to watching the movie again sometime. I think it's been somewhere in the neighborhood of three and a half years since I last saw it. I have to say, though, that I remember Sean Penn being really, really awesome in it. How he went from Jeff Spicoli in Fast Times at Ridgemont High to the accomplished dramatic actor he is today, I have no idea. You know, I think I'm gonna go head over to the ol' Netflix queue and bump it up to the top ten. Depending on how I'm feeling when it arrives at Sutton HQ, I'll probably end up doing a full write-up about it for S@TM. Though it might be a while, considering I've got three other movies in my top ten that I plan on writing about, along with a fourth I'm thinking about. (I'm seriously debating doing a double shot of Hollywoodland and The Black Dahlia, due to the weird coincidence of two movies with similar plots getting released within seven days of one another. I'm certainly doing one on Hollywoodland, but the other remains to be seen.) Throw in the review that I'm currently in the middle of writing and the chance that I might do its sequel as well, and you've got a little waiting to do before you get a Mystic River review.
And, uh... I can't really think of anything else to add to this one. San Dimas High School football rules!
Tuesday, June 26, 2007; 2:42 p.m.
Sigh... this is going to be a rough post to write, but I guess I'll tough it out.
If you know me or have been reading this blog for the last few years, you probably know that I'm a fan of professional wrestling. I have been since I was eleven years old. And in the fourteen years I've been watching pro wrestling, I've seen a lot of people that I respected and enjoyed watching die. A couple have gone on due to natural causes, and a handful died thanks to freak accidents beyond their control, but way too many have been taken from this mortal coil due to the repercussions of heavy drug use. Whether it be due to painkillers or the more illicit stuff, wrestlers dying due to overdoses or their bodies just giving out is something that we fans have unfortunately become accustomed to.
But then, there was the story that broke yesterday afternoon. Chris Benoit, one of the greatest technical wrestlers of this generation and a certified Hall of Famer in the making, was dead. And to make matters worse, his wife Nancy (who old-school fans of WCW and ECW will remember as "Woman") and their seven-year-old son Daniel were both found dead too, the victims of an apparent murder-suicide. Now as far as I know right now, the coroner hasn't come out and said that's what officially happened for a fact yet, but I think that's the story they're sticking to right now. But if it really is true and Benoit murdered his wife and young son before taking his own life, I'd go out on a limb and call that the biggest tragedy in a business full of them. I mean, short of somebody bombing Orlando during WrestleMania next year, I think this is going to take the cake.
And as someone who enjoyed watching Benoit's matches, I think this really throws a wrench into what would have been a great legacy to leave behind. If he'd retired or died due to using too many painkillers or something like that, then he would have been remembered as a guy that shed blood, sweat, and tears for pro wrestling and earned the respect of his peers and his fans. But now that this has happened, will he end up being remembered as the guy who wigged out and killed his wife, his child, and himself? Does one weekend of insanity erase twenty years of in-ring brilliance and turn him into pro wrestling's version of O.J. Simpson? I really don't know. Call me in a year or two, and I might have a good idea.
But the idea that Benoit could do something like this is unfathomable. He's supposed to be one of the good guys. He's supposed to be one of the few that you never heard anything negative about. I'd almost expect to hear something like this was done by a wrestler everybody already knew was crazy, like Lex Luger or the Ultimate Warrior. And if Benoit had died thanks to drugs like every other wrestler, then I'd have accepted it and eventually gotten over it. But this?
I didn't know Chris Benoit personally. And unless one of you readers worked for any of the promotions he did, I doubt any of you did either. So I can only wonder what would have possessed him to do something this terrible, and I can only imagine how those closest to him, Nancy, and Daniel feel. What I do know, however, that if it's proven for a fact that what we're hearing is true, then I don't know if I'll be able to think about Benoit with the same warm feelings I did before yesterday.
And after all this, watching pro wrestling seems a little less fun.
Saturday, June 23, 2007; 11:05 p.m.
Remember last weekend when I was posting about seeing Surf's Up and the Fantastic Four sequel at a drive-in theater? I've been thinking about that sort of thing, plus thinking back to a conversation I had with Libby the other day, and it makes me wonder just how hard something like that would be to put together.
Opening a drive-in theater will probably take way too much effort than I could put forth by myself, but it'd be neat if I could convince the Opera House over in Springfield to let me put together - and perhaps host - a midnight movies program in their auditorium. I don't know if it'd be any kind of success in this neighborhood, but it'd be fun for me. Just walking in there every Friday and/or Saturday night with however many people are in attendance and running a movie that everybody there would have a ball watching. Though I will concede that it's just a cheap reason for me to watch late-night movies in anything resembling a theater. That sort of thing is just too much fun.
At the very least, I'd like to bring back something some college buddies of mine put together several years back. They rigged up some televisions and a VCR in the school's courtyard in front of one of the girls' dorms, along with a tent, a couch, and a few recliners and whatever chairs we could come up with. On tap: a triple feature of Fallen, House on Haunted Hill, and In the Mouth of Madness. Once I get back out there into the real world and start networking, I'd like to do something similar to that. Just get a bunch of friends together to party and watch some movies every few weeks. Don't act like that wouldn't be any fun.
Yeah, this whole thing is just me rambling; a few pipe dreams, if you will. But there's nothing wrong with that.
Friday, June 22, 2007; 2:51 p.m.
So yeah, I haven't had a post up all week. I'm slacking off, I know. But that sort of thing happens when you don't really have anything to talk about.
The only thing that's been going on lately is the repair of the air conditioner here at Sutton HQ. Yeah, really exciting news. I'm sure you guys are dying to hear all about that. But it certainly is good to have it fixed, since the awful heat and humidity has been pretty much unbearable. So things are doing pretty good.
Outside of that little bit of nothing, I'm not really sure about what else there is to talk about. Uh... I am working on a new review or two to kill some time until I get X-Men 3 and Ghost Rider from Netflix. So once I get those, the current work-in-progress is going on hold until I get them finished. Plus I've got a few more reviews lined up after those, along with a couple I'm thinking about writing. As it stands, I'm planning on reviewing seven of the top twelve DVDs in my Netflix queue, and I'm contemplating two more. Plus there's three or four movies that are going to be released over the next few months that I'd like to review sometime. I'm going to be really busy with the writing, I guess.
And that's about it for now.
Sunday, June 17, 2007; 1:46 a.m.
Just got back from the drive-in theater in Stanford, and man, I'm sleepy. This will probably be a short one, but we'll see how it goes.
Anyway, the drive-in was showing a double feature of Surf's Up and Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer. The theme, in case you're a dimwit that couldn't tell, is that both of them feature surfers in some form or fashion. (Of course, dorky me is probably the only person who noticed or cared that Brian Posehn had minor roles in both of them too.) So let's break down what I thought about the flicks, okay?
First in line was Surf's Up, the most recent entry in the lucrative "animated penguin" genre. Really, this is a movie that could have been done live-action, and it wouldn't have made any difference at all. It didn't really need penguins or animation. But what do I know, I'm not the one that made the thing. Regardless, I thought it was entertaining in spite of some really predictable parts. It made me laugh, so it did it was supposed to do. The final verdict is three and a half stars.
Up next, after the intermission, was Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer. Maybe it was just the entertaining atmosphere making a silly B-movie more entertaining than it really is, but I liked the movie. It's a very simple story, one that didn't a whole lot of plot or character development, but I thought it was a lot of fun. There were a few instances where the CGI work seemed awfully unconvincing (the dance scene at the beginning, for example), but for the most part, it wasn't too distracting. I'd probably put it on the same level as Spider-Man 3; it's not a great movie, but I wouldn't call it a bad one either. So the final verdict is three stars.
In any regards, I'm quite glad I got the opportunity to do the whole drive-in thing again. It's worth experiencing at least once. And lucky me, there's two drive-ins within 45 minutes of here.
I just wish I could get to some more midnight movies. There's a theater up in Lexington that runs midnight movies every weekend during the summer months, and according to their website, they've got The Big Lebowski, a 3-D showing of Creature from the Black Lagoon, The Rocky Horror Picture Show, Shaun of the Dead, and the original Friday the 13th all lined up over the next five or six weeks. I might have to call in a few favors and/or kiss the asses of the right people, because even though I own them on DVD and have seen them a million times, I really want to see Rocky Horror, Shaun of the Dead, and Friday the 13th on the big screen. Atmosphere is an important thing when it comes to movies, after all, and seeing them in a theater would be so much fun. I'm not going to get my hopes up, but it doesn't hurt to dream.
Thursday, June 14, 2007; 10:49 p.m.
Bruce Campbell's my hero, and here's why!
Thursday, June 14, 2007; 6:51 p.m.
If you're a regular reader, you may remember me mentioning that I'd rewritten my review of 28 Days Later to coincide with the release of its sequel. Well, with Rob Zombie's remake of Halloween coming out at the end of August, I figured I'd go and do a little work on my review of the original 1978 classic. I probably could have waited until the remake came out so they'd coincide, but it needed a rewrite and I wanted to go ahead and get it over with while I had it on my mind.
I could also stand to rewrite my review of A Nightmare on Elm Street while I'm at it, since it's not as good as it could be. Truth be told, I could probably stand to rewrite a few of my older reviews. But whether I actually do or not is just a matter of if I can come up with the motivation. I'm sure a few of you readers know what I mean.
Saturday, June 9, 2007; 10:29 p.m.
Continuing my weekly adventures to the movie theater, I made a trip to see Hostel: Part II. And believe it or not, I actually thought it was an entertaining little flick. It's most certainly a better film than the first Hostel.
I didn't go in expecting a whole lot, considering that I thought the previous movie was thoroughly mediocre and devoid of substance. But Hostel: Part II, while still unabashedly a gorefest, actually has something resembling - gasp! - a plot. Of course, neither the main plot or the secondary plot are very deep, but hey, it's better than the vacuousness of the first movie. Our primary plot is essentially a remake of the first movie, as a group of Americans - this time, three female art students - end up following a little bad advice and end up at the dreaded Slovakian hostel, where they enter a world of pain. The secondary plot, however, reveals just how the "Elite Hunting" organization works as two wealthy American businessmen cross paths with our three heroines.
Eli Roth's direction is well done, but I have to say that I've never exactly been a fan of Roth as a writer. He seems like the kind of filmmaker that I believe would be a far better director if he didn't insist on writing his own material. But I will admit that I thought Hostel: Part II was most certainly better written than some of Roth's other work. The characters aren't as deep as they could have been, but they've certainly more developed than the cheap one-dimensional characters in Cabin Fever and Hostel. The tone of the movie seems to be aiming towards camp, and I think Roth does a decent job with it. The movie also boasts a tighter pace than Roth's other movies, and if you let yourself get drawn in, it almost feels like the movie is over before you know it. However, my biggest problem with the movie as a whole is that there's no real tension or suspense. I think Roth realised that, since he used that void with dark humor. Very dark humor, and lots of it. Kids kicking around a decapitated head like a soccer ball and doing the "pull your shirt off and run around" celebration after a goal? Sure. A torturer scaring his prey by threatening to stick a buzzsaw in her face, then getting upset when he gets the saw stuck in her hair? Why not?
The cast also does an entertaining job, for the most part. Our three female leads - Lauren German, Bijou Philips, and Heather Matarazzo - are all entertaining despite the hit-or-miss writing of their characters. And I feel like I should note something I've picked up on. I mentioned in my post about Bug last week that I felt Ashley Judd had made a career out of appearing in the same movie over and over. But am I the only one who believes that Heather Matarazzo has made a career out of playing the same character over and over? It seems like ever since she did Welcome to the Dollhouse, she's been stuck playing the mousy, awkward misfit in all of her movies. So either she's found herself being dreadfully typecast, or she just doesn't know how to play any other character. I hope it's the former rather than the latter, personally. And I'd be remiss if I didn't mention the actors that give probably the two best performances in the movie, Richard Burgi and Roger Bart. Going too into detail would give too much away, but I'll say that their performances are fantastically intense, and I'll give them a thumbs-up.
So was Hostel: Part II a good movie? I don't know if I'd go that far. But did I enjoy it? Yeah, I did. So I'm gonna give it three and a half stars, but I'd only recommend it to people who didn't outright despise the first one and those who might have even the slightest amount of interest in seeing it. I hear Eli Roth has the movie version of Cell lined up next, and I'm anxious to see what he does with it. He better not screw it up, because I'll have to raise a stink otherwise.
Friday, June 8, 2007; 4:05 p.m.
So if you haven't been watching the news today, Paris Hilton's going back to jail. Nice to see a celebrity that isn't above the law after all.
But the news networks have just been crazy with the Paris stuff. It's like Generation Y's answer to the O.J. Simpson car chase back in 1994. It's just been a giant circus, and for what? Some socialite with no real claim to fame getting a ride from her mansion to the local courthouse to be told that she's going to prison, that's what. And as much as I dislike Paris, it's been some riveting television. I've been glued to my television all day watching this nonsense, and I have no idea why.
I think I'm losing my mind.
Thursday, June 7, 2007; 4:11 p.m.
Paris Hilton is out of prison, and instead of serving her time in jail like she was supposed to, she's being rewarded with forty days of house arrest. The official word is that it's because of a "medical condition," though the rumor going around is that she was on the verge of a nervous breakdown because she just didn't like being in prison.
I can't speak for anybody else, but I'm really offended by this stupidity. Paris got arrested for a drunk driving - which could have led to her possibly hurting or killing someone - before getting probation. Then she decided to violate her probation by driving 70 in a 35 while on a suspended license. So she does five days in jail and gets to leave because prison is too rough? I thought prison was supposed to be rough. That's why it's prison! It's supposed to be a punishment, not a vacation to Disneyland. She was getting preferential treatment to begin with, but just because Paris doesn't want to be there, she gets to leave and spend a month hanging out at her fancy mansion. That's like grounding a kid and sending him to his room, where he can sit around reading comic books and playing video games. It's not really a punishment at all. And I'm sure the other inmates at that prison don't like being there either, so why not let them out too? Huh? How about that?
Paris broke the law twice, but just gets a slap on the wrist. I wouldn't be surprised if they took the ankle bracelet off this weekend and apologized for inconveniencing her. Why should Paris Hilton get to be above the law when everybody else has to do their time? Why do the rules not apply to her? Because she's a stupid spoiled whore that has more money than she can count? This is absolutely preposterous. Paris Hilton is a pimple on the ass of society, and I'm embarrassed that I live on the same planet that she does.
Wednesday, June 6, 2007; 4:03 p.m.
Got a review for Borat finished and uploaded over at "Sutton At The Movies," so you can go check it out here.
I'm not really sure what movie I'm going to review next. Seems like I go through this every time I finish one. I do have at least six movies lined up on Netflix, and I'm considering a seventh and eigth. But as with everything, we'll have to see how it goes.
Tuesday, June 5, 2007; 9:58 p.m.
So I'm currently working with a temporary replacement monitor, one which I borrowed from a lesser-used computer we happened to have around the house. Again, it's only a temporary replacement, since I'm aiming to acquire a permanent one once I can find one within an acceptable price range. I'd rather get a new computer, but unless I stumble across 700 bucks or so, that's not going to happen anytime soon.
In other news, I did a little digging around my closet Sunday night and stumbled upon my old Nintendo Entertainment System. Like I couldn't find it without hooking it up and playing a game or two. It's almost as old as I am, so I was a bit surprised that it would actually still work. I had a hard time getting some of the games to play correctly, and some didn't even want to work at all. And there were even a few instances of a game resetting itself in the middle of a level. But hey, I'm glad I found it. I don't think I'd seen it since I left college five years ago. So pulling it out of the mothballs for another go-around was great.
I think I might have to fire up the NES again in the near future. Old-school 8-bit goodness never hurt anybody.
Monday, June 4, 2007; 10:18 p.m.
Well, it seems I'm in a bit of a pickle. My computer monitor is, I believe, dead.
Here's the story. I was sitting at my desk minding my own business, then all of a sudden my monitor went all fuzzy and started making this weird buzzing noise. I turned it off, unplugged it, and let it sit in front of my fan for a few minutes, then hooked it back up and tried it again. "Tried" is the key word there. It doesn't make the buzzing noise anymore, but when I try turning the monitor on, the little green/amber light on it blinks off and on, and the screen stays blank. My guess is that the monitor simply overheated and decided to die, which is a real bummer.
I guess my options are that I'll either have to go buy a new one or take it to a computer shop and pay to have it repaired, neither I think I can really afford. So unless one of you tech-savvy readers knows some troubleshooting tips or somewhere I can get a monitor for cheap as free, I'm stuck borrowing my mom's computer until I can scrounge up a few hundred bucks to get a new monitor. I really should have seen this coming, though. The monitor is nearly ten years old and put out a whole lot of heat as it was, and my desk was a haven for giant dust bunnies no matter how much I cleaned.
Sigh, this sucks.
Saturday, June 2, 2007; 10:41 p.m.
So there was a small change in plans. I mentioned a few hours ago that I was planning on seeing Bug tomorrow afternoon with my dad and sister, but that ended up getting changed to me and Dad seeing it tonight. Hey, stuff happens. Regardless, I did see Bug, so I figure I might as well do a little blogging about it.
I should start by saying that I think Bug is a victim of a misleading advertising campaign. The commercials paint the movie as being an intense horror film. While there are certainly a few elements of the horror genre in there, especially towards the finale, it's mostly a weird cross between dark comedy and a thriller. And if you want my honest opinion, I didn't think the movie was bad at all. It's well made and excellently acted, but I have to admit that I don't know how to truly classify the movie as an experience. I say that because the movie is so unlike pretty much any movie I've seen in my lifetime.
If I had to describe Bug in one word, it would be "weird." In two words, "extremely weird." In three, "it's messed up." We watch as two people descend into a world of insanity and paranoia, but the movie doesn't try convincing us that perhaps their paranoia is justified. We know they're absolutely crazy, and we're just along for the ride. And we know that this is all going to end very badly for the characters. There isn't a real catharsis, at least not a happy one. The whole movie is like a bizarre drug trip, like if the characters from Requiem for a Dream were using crystal meth instead of heroin. But the characters aren't hopped up on meth, they've just got a bit of delusional parasitosis, extreme paranoid psychosis, and maybe some schizophrenia too.
The two primary actors, Ashley Judd and Michael Shannon, are both great in their roles. Judd has made a career out of doing pretty much the same movie over and over again, so Bug is a surprising change of pace for her. The character is a lonely woman who quickly lets herself get convinced that things might be much more terrifying than they really are, and Judd seems like she's actually having fun getting the chance to act absolutely off her rocker. It's as if, as an actress, getting to craft absolutely preposterous conspiracy theories while standing half-naked in a seedy motel room covered in tinfoil wallpaper and lit by bug zappers is the equivalent of a kid getting free reign over a Toys-R-Us. Shannon, on the other hand, is super-intense. Reprising the role he performed in the off-Broadway play that inspired this movie, Shannon begins as somewhat amiable yet mysterious and quite off-putting, but by the end of the movie, he becomes more and more frightening as his character falls deeper and deeper into his psychosis.
I really cannot in good conscience recommend Bug to everyone. I'm sure the movie will end up developing some kind of small cult following once it's released on DVD, but I think it will be among those folks who are into... well, I'm not really sure if I can put a definitive label on it. Outside of the word "bizarre," I mean. It's a movie that has to be seen to be believed, one that is just as insane as its characters. And I don't even know if I can give it a star rating that reflects exactly how I feel about it. The movie does get four stars from a technical standpoint, I do know that much. The power of suggestion alone is enough to make me start scratching at invisible bugs.
Since I've had a little time to reflect on it, I really want to just curl up in the fetal position and quietly mumble to myself for a few hours. I really haven't felt this way after a movie since I saw The Exorcist for the first time back last October, the irony of which is that both The Exorcist and Bug were directed by William Friedkin. So yeah, I'm going with four stars on from the actual filmmaking standpoint, but from an emotional standpoint... I think I'm gonna be messed up for a few days.
Saturday, June 2, 2007; 1:22 p.m.
Man, it's June already? With all this heat, I believe it. And I know I've said it before, but where does all the time go?
Anyway, aside from the heat and the mugginess and all that, the weekend hasn't been too bad so far. Gonna try and catch Bug tomorrow afternoon with my dad and sister; we would have seen it on Monday like I thought, but everybody was feeling kinda lazy and we didn't want to get out or anything like that. But I'm looking forward to the movie, even if it is getting mixed reviews and not a lot of hype.
I'm also making a bit of progress with the Borat review. Reviewing comedies is a tough way to go, because humor is subjective. And considering that Borat is kinda like a cross between Jackass and Candid Camera, it might be a bit tougher to review. And that reminds me, I could probably stand to sit down and review Jackass Number Two too. It probably wouldn't take very long to write, since there probably wouldn't be too much to say about it. I mean, it'd be something to the effect of, "It's the same as the first movie, only with a million times more poop, uncomfortable male nudity, and other really gross things. Three and a half stars." That's basically the same as the post I made about it back when I saw it in theaters in September.
And that's about it. Didn't really have much of anything to say, just felt like posting for the sake of killing time. Not that there's anything wrong with that.
Thursday, May 31, 2007; 2:55 p.m.
In other news, I've got two new reviews to put up. So for your reading pleasure, here's my reviews of the second and third live-action movies based upon the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles franchise. I'd have done the animated movie too, but I ended up deciding to wait until the DVD came out first. That should be out sometime around July or August, so I'll hopefully get to do it by the end of summer.
I've got a few more reviews lined up, so there won't be a whole lot of down time. I received Borat in the mail from Netflix today, so you can expect a review of that within the next couple of weeks. I also found something claiming to be a workprint of Hostel 2, so once I get it downloaded, I might do a review of that if the video turns out okay. I must say, though, that I'm not completely sure how closely a workprint will resemble the final cut of the movie. I don't want to go and review something, then have a completely opposite opinion of it once I see it in theaters. I think there might be other non-workprint bootlegs of the movie out there too, but I'll just wait and see. Let's just hope I don't get my ass sued off for all this.
Wednesday, May 30, 2007; 10:28 a.m.
So now I'm another year older. And to be honest, I'm not quite sure how I feel about it right now. It's like this every birthday, where it takes a while for it to really sink in. Don't know why for sure.
But looking back, I'd say yesterday was a pretty good day. It was a low-key affair for the most part; no cake or wild party or anything like that. That's more than likely for the best, since everybody - even me - is still kinda worn out from all the activity from the weekend. So something a little less active was probably a good way to go. It probably doesn't help that it was a Tuesday too. If it had been on maybe a Friday or Saturday, things might have been totally crazy.
But you know, it might have been a slow day, but I'm a firm believer in the idea that waking up in the morning and going to bed at night constitutes a good day. Maybe it wasn't a huge exciting day or anything, but there's always next birthday for that.
Tuesday, May 29, 2007; 6:59 a.m.
Twenty-five years ago today, yours truly came into the world, and I think the place is a little bit brighter because of me. No, I don't have an ego at all.
I had the idea to do a big "life and times" post, but after typing up a little bit of it, it started getting kinda pretentious and we don't want that. So I'll just say that it's my birthday and that's pretty rockin'. I'm gonna go party.
Went and caught Pirates of the Caribbean 3 today like I'd planned. I'd heard that it was getting mixed reviews, but no matter; I thought it was absolutely fabulous.
I'm not saying the movie isn't without its flaws, but that doesn't stop the movie from being entertaining from beginning to end. Truth be told, I only have two complaints about the whole thing: I thought some of the action sequences are long to the point of being borderline excessive, and I had a hard time following the plot and figuring out just who was aligned with who. Other than that, I really don't have much of anything to say in the negative.
Gore Verbinski's direction and Hans Zimmer's music are great, the effects are wonderful, and the cast is fantastic. Pirates 3 is a big, flashy, exciting summer blockbuster, no doubt about it. But there's nothing wrong with that, since the movie is really great. So I'm going to give Pirates of the Caribbean: At World's End four stars and hope that just because this is the end of a trilogy doesn't mean it's the end of a franchise.
Yeah, so I haven't posted since Wednesday. Get off my hump about it.
Anyway, today was my town's Memorial Day weekend festival, which basically boils down to a bunch of yard sales up and down our one road. The main part was supposed to be at the park, but I went to the park and all that was there were some food vendors, a Lions Club booth, one of those bouncy inflatable slides, and some guy selling random stuff. And then there was a parade that was pretty much just a bunch of cars and ATVs driving from one end of town to the other, with the mascot for the Lexington Legends out there for some weird reason. I think because the Lions Club was raffling off tickets to a Legends game, I don't know. But yeah, today was slow. Could have been better, but hey, I can't say today sucked. I can't complain.
The best thing that came out of today was that my cousins from Cincinnati came down to hang out with some of the family at my uncle's house. I hadn't seen them since our grandmother died a few years ago, so it was good getting to hang out with them and their kids. Other than that, the heat wore me out, plus the Allegra I took this morning to handle my allergies made me kinda drowsy, so I'd say today was just a day to sit around and not do much of anything. Ah, lazy days.
But hopefully, tomorrow, Monday, and Tuesday are going to be exciting. I've got plans to see Pirates 3 tomorrow, and I'll be in E-Town on Tuesday doing something to celebrate the big day. Monday is the one I'm least sure about, since nothing is finalized, but I'm trying - hoping, really - to make plans to see Bug on Monday. We'll see how that goes, but either way, Sunday and Tuesday are gonna be at least a little fun.
So yeah, that's about it.
Just finished watching the season finale of Heroes. It took me most of the afternoon to download it, which means I really need to invest in a TiVo or some other kind of DVR. Anyway, I don't know if I could have asked for a better way to end this season. It wrapped up pretty much everything (except for the whole "Hiro fights a dinosaur" deal from earlier in the season, which I was - and still am - really looking forward to seeing), it set things up for season two, and it was a good episode in general. I am really hoping that Heroes doesn't come down with the sophomore jinx and fall off its mountain next season, because I've got high hopes for it.
And it seems like every show is either having finales lately. Take, for example, Smallville. It just ended its sixth season, and I can't believe I gave up on watching the second season of My Name Is Earl just to watch this crap. (I know I could have downloaded My Name Is Earl like I do with Heroes, but I just never did. Can't say that I have a reason why.) I mean, really, are Smallville's writing staff even trying? Okay, let's set this whole thing up. Lana Lang is apparently dead via car bombing because she tried to leave her husband, Lex Luthor. The whole marriage thing is stupid to begin with, and the show has also decided to insult our intelligence by insinuating Lana is dead. They're never gonna kill her off because everyone involved with this show is obviously madly in love with Kristin Kreuk, but even an idiot could recognize that the whole thing was just Lana faking her death so the Luthors wouldn't hassle her. And this leads to Lex getting arrested for organizing the car bombing, despite having the flimsiest motive ever, along with the fact that as far as I know, the police have nothing that even remotely resembles evidence.
Then there's Chloe. Poor, unloved Chloe. Somebody must have incriminating photographs of Allison Mack, because if I were her, I'd be telling the writers to treat the character with some friggin' respect before I walked off of Smallville and never looked back. (The same goes for John Glover and Annette O'Toole too, because both of them are way too awesome for this show.) Here's what happened to Chloe: A few episodes ago, it was revealed that due to all the times Chloe has been exposed to Kryptonite over the years, she's developed mutant powers just like pretty much everybody else that's been on this show. Anyway, Lois Lane breaks into this laboratory located in a dam, gets into a fight with a guard, and is promptly stabbed to death. Instead of calling 911 with her dying breath like any sane person, she calls Chloe instead. Chloe somehow tracks her cell phone down and arrives on the scene, stumbling upon Lois's corpse. Now after seeing her beloved cousin dead, Chloe's a big ol' ball of emotion. She starts crying, one of the tears lands on Lois's forehead, and boom! There's a big flash of bright light. Next thing we the viewer know, Lois is alive and perfectly healthy, and Chloe's curled up in the corner, apparently dead. Yep, Chloe's superpower was tears that revive the dead at the cost of her own life. I'll admit that Smallville is already pretty out there, but that is one of the most ludicrous things I have ever seen. Sure, they'll probably come back next season and say that there was some kind of shock to her system that just knocked her out, but she looked pretty dead to me.
And then there's the show's usage of the Martian Manhunter. Get this: the Manhunter is apparently trying to hunt down all these evil wraiths that escaped from the Phantom Zone at the beginning of the season. I can deal with that. But in Smallville's season finale, the Manhunter reveals that the final wraith was a weird Kryptonian science experiment. This is where it starts getting really stupid. Turns out that the Manhunter was also an assistant to Jor-El, and that he'd been sent to Earth to be Clark's guardian until he began "training" to accept his greater glory as Superman. See? That's stupid. If he's supposed to be a guardian, where has he been the last few seasons? Why didn't he show up when Clark had to fight General Zod and Brainiac all by himself? Why didn't he show up to straighten Clark out after he'd been infected by silver Kryptonite? Why didn't he show up any of the bajillion times Clark was in mortal danger? If they said the Manhunter took a wrong turn at Albuquerque and just now got to Earth, I'd almost believe that. But the idea that he's Jor-El's assistant and Clark's guardian? Come on now. If he's really supposed to be Martian, what's he doing cavorting around a zillion light years away on Krypton? Once again, I reiterate my belief that Smallville's writers are just throwing crap at the wall to see what'll stick. I mean, this is the same show that expected us to accept that Jor-El once took a vacation to Earth and became friends with Grandpa Kent, which led to Clark being sent to the Kent family on purpose.
And then there's the big moment of the whole episode: Clark finally tells Lana that he's an alien, and they didn't go back on it. And she was all, "Okay, no big deal. Let's make out." Six seasons of build-up, and the results are kinda lame. Sigh... nobody in the show's writing staff is trying at all. At least they finally got it out there without screwing the audience over, only it's about two seasons or so later than they should have.
The only halfway decent thing to come out of the entire episode is the introduction of Bizarro. He's not the traditional half-retarded "me am Bizarro" Bizarro that we all know. He just comes across as just being an extremely angry and violent Clark doppelganger. Bizarro has the ugly face, wears a different color scheme, and is made stronger by green Kryptonite as opposed to vice versa, but from what I can tell so far, that's the only resemblances I can see.
And the best thing as a whole I can say about Smallville right now is that the show that at least the end of each episode means that Supernatural will be starting. I'm surprised I never really got into Supernatural during it's first season, because it's a fantastic show. If Supernatural's writers and Heroes's writers could team up and do Smallville, right there would be the three best shows on television. A close contender would be Veronica Mars, but the geniuses at the CW Network, in their infinite wisdom, decided to cancel it. If it weren't for Supernatural and my favorite cape-wearing guilty pleasure, the CW Network could go screw itself for all I care.
I think now I'm going to have to start downloading My Name Is Earl episodes to make up for the lost time. Either that, or just wait for the DVD to come out in a couple of months and stick it on my Netflix list. I'm ashamed of myself for watching Smallville instead of it. And I'm really hoping for reruns, because I don't know if I've seen one new show this summer that looks like it'll be any good at all. Can't Fox just start a 24-hour Simpsons channel to keep me satisfied until all my other favorite shows return in the fall?
Yeah, I'm still around. I know, I'm shocked myself.
Haven't really had a whole lot to talk about lately. I am, however, working on some new S@TM material, as well as preparing to start the one-week countdown to the start of Operation: B-Day. Don't know for sure what the plans for the big day are yet, if there are any, but something will get worked out by then, I know it. Either way, we've got eight days or so, so I'm totally getting ready.
And while I'm working on some new stuff for S@TM, I'm not burying myself in it like I usually do. I'm being a little more casual about it. It's just a little something to kill time until I get something I'd like to review from Netflix. I had the idea earlier today that Battle Royale would be a movie I'd like to review, but by the time I started thinking about it, I'd already mailed it back. D'oh. No worries though, because I'm sure it's available to less-than-legally download somewhere out there on this crazy series of tubes we call the Interweb. I might have to review the other Asian movies in my collection too, but we'll just have to see.
And that's about it for now.
Saturday, May 19, 2007; 5:34 p.m.
Went and caught Shrek The Third this afternoon. I didn't think it was as strong as the other two, but I have to say that it was an entertaining movie. And isn't that what most movies should be?
While I do think that this particular movie was indicative of how the Shrek franchise is starting to run out of steam, Shrek The Third still made a good go of it. There were a number of truly funny moments, and I'd be lying if I said I didn't have a good time watching it. Pretty much all the cast gives it their best, though Justin Timberlake seemed to be the weakest link (though his character was the weakest, so that's probably part of it). The animation is still fantastic, and the soundtrack is great as well. Outside of my previously mentioned complaints about how it feels like "sequelitis" is finally catching up with the Shrek movies, I really don't have a lot of bad to say about Shrek The Third. I'll give it three and a half stars and a recommendation to fans of the first two movies. Now I've heard that Shrek 4 has already been approved and I'll definitely see it, but I really want to see a Puss-In-Boots spinoff instead. Is that too much to ask?
So that's enough of that. I'm gonna go relax and watch the Heroes marathon on the Sci-Fi Channel. Later.
Friday, May 18, 2007; 3:41 a.m.
I just finished watching my latest Netflix rental, a little Japanese flick titled Battle Royale. For those of you who are a little less than familiar with it, here's a quickie synopsis for you: Japan is experiencing a drastic youth uprising, so lawmakers pass the Millennium Educational Reform Act, nicknamed "the B.R. Act." This means that once a year, a random class of high school freshmen are selected to take part in a game called "Battle Royale." Not that that's a good thing or anything. They're rounded up, dropped on a deserted island with randomly assigned weapons, and are forced to fight one another to the death. They're given a strict set of guidelines and three days in which to whittle themselves down to one sole survivor, or else the collars around their necks will explode. It's basically like that movie The Condemned, except it's missing the reality show gimmick and instead of Steve Austin and the guy that played Juggernaut in X-Men 3, the contestants are forty Asian teenagers. Battle Royale came highly recommended from some folks up in New England, and I'd heard good things about it even before that, so I figured I'd give it a go.
Aside from the absolutely horrible subtitles, I have to say that I liked the movie a lot. It's almost as if the creators decided it'd be neat to add knives, guns, and explosives to Lord of the Flies. Naturally, there were a few parts I didn't get - like those wholly useless "requiems" added to the end of the movie, and why none of the participants had any idea that Battle Royale exists despite the last winner being all over the news - but other than that and the aforementioned bad subtitles, I had a lot of fun watching the movie. Though I will say that I thought there was a lot they could have done with it.
I think if the movie had waited a couple of years, they could have really played into the whole reality show craze. Battle Royale was released in 2000, when the only big reality shows were The Real World, Survivor, and Cops. They could have done it like The Running Man and had people taking bets on it, maybe watching it live on pay-per-view for $39.95 a pop. Just something to make that one scene with the paparazzi and the crazy smiling girl have some kind of bearing on the plot. It could have given the movie a shot at having some kind of social commentary about what kind of sicko would pay to watch a bunch of 14-year-olds kill each other in the most violent ways possible.
But the movie instead concentrates mostly on the Lord of the Flies aspect, with the kids who are trying to buck the system and end the game, others that buy into it and become heartless killing machines, and ones that are just trying to survive. The movie seems to borrow a little from Reservoir Dogs, evidenced in the lighthouse scene. The scene centers around a group of girls who have taken refuge in a lighthouse; one of them has secretly slipped poison into another girl's food, and the resulting death causes all the girls go crazy with paranoia and accuse one another of being the killer before pulling their guns and mowing each other down. It's an intense scene, one that is very much Quentin Tarantino's style to the point that it makes me wonder if he had a hand in the creative process. It also makes me hope that when the time comes for some American studio to produce a Battle Royale remake, they hire Q.T. to write and direct it. (And I also hope that in the event of a remake, Battle Royale will finally get an official release on DVD in the United States. Maybe they can put some mistake-free subtitles on there too, since that bugged me to no end.)
Pretty much everything about the movie is worth seeing. Director Kinji Fukasaku does a great job, as does his cast. The music - especially the classical stuff they work into it - is excellent, and the violence and gore are both bountiful and well done. So I'm giving it four stars on the patent-pending Sutton Scale, and a recommendation to check it out if you're in the movie's target audience. I imagine that ultraviolent movies such as this aren't for everyone, so if you're the kind of person that isn't into movies with a very high body count and a few gallons of blood, I suggest you avoid Battle Royale like the plague. Everybody else, track down a copy if you can find one.
Tuesday, May 15, 2007; 1:26 a.m.
Man, six of my previous seven posts have somehow involved movies; either I was watching them or I was writing about them. I really need to find myself some other topics, like stupid spoiled whores in prison (which is a South Park episode waiting to happen) or another stream of consciousness post like the one I made a week and a half ago. Just something to change things up once in a while, y'know?
Maybe once this whole "moving forward" campaign of mine makes a teensy bit of progress, we can start delving into more interesting and/or entertaining topics here at the MSX. I mean, I often accuse myself of having limited imagination, so I'm not really thinking up all that many topics for posts just sitting around doing nothing most of the time. Yeah, there's things I could talk about, but I'm afraid I could end up becoming repetitive. That's why don't do posts about Heroes every week, since there's only so many ways I can say "this show is awesome" before I start to sound like a broken record. That's one big reason why I'm looking forward to July, because the second season of Who Wants To Be A Superhero? begins, and I'd really like to do recaps of each episode like I did last August. Those were a lot of fun, and I can't wait to do that again.
But yeah, I could probably stand to broaden my blogging horizons. I do get tired of writing about pretty much the same thing over and over. After all, I'm here to entertain myself and my readers (both of them), not bore you to tears with the same stories and anecdotes you've heard ten trillion times before. So I'm going to work on that, and you can work on continuing to come back and read this. Is that a deal? Cool.
Sunday, May 13, 2007; 10:52 a.m.
I was hoping that the post following my whole 28 Weeks Later rant would have been a wee bit more upbeat. But I guess I don't always get what I want, and I'll explain why.
It all goes back to movies. I was hoping I could find something to put me in a better mood after Friday, so yesterday afternoon, I finally got around to watching The Ring Virus, a South Korean remake of The Ring that predates the American remake by about three years or so. I got it from Netflix on Thursday, and I have no idea why it took me a few days to watch it. But then I started watching it, and it hit me: the movie is very, very dull. So dull, that I don't think I can really remember a whole lot about it. I remember one or two scenes, and it ends with the girl crawling out of the television like the Japanese and American Rings, and that's about it.
Maybe I thought it was dull because, aside from a particular detail or two, it didn't really present me with anything I hadn't already seen in any of the other Ring movies. And because of that, it barely kept my attention at all. People talk about American remakes not being any good, but The Ring Virus shows me that other countries might not be doing remakes all that well either.
I might watch the movie one more time before I mail it back tomorrow, but I really can't see myself changing my opinion on it. After seeing two less-than-stellar movies this weekend, I hope Netflix will pull through in the clutch for me. The top two spots in my queue are currently held by Battle Royale and Casino Royale, both of which I'm told are quite good, so I'm looking forward to them. Plus I expect Shrek 3 and Pirates 3 to both be entertaining as well, so the rest of this month should be looking up when it comes to cinematic adventures.
Friday, May 11, 2007; 11:59 p.m.
Let's get one thing out there right from the start: 28 Weeks Later sucks. Hard. It's such a horrible movie, it makes me hate 28 Days Later for having inspired it. It's such a horrible movie, that if I had to choose between watching this or watching BloodRayne, I'd probably choose BloodRayne. It's that bad. The writing is weak, the directing is tremendously awful, and the cast acts like they'd rather be anywhere else on the planet than making this movie.
The movie looks like it was made using an epileptic camera crew and an editor that decided to make a cut every second and a half. We never get any sense of what is happening during any of the action sequences, because they're so poorly crafted. A hummingbird couldn't make heads or tails of this mess. And let's not forget that laughable night-vision sequence. It looks like a bad combination of The Blair Witch Project and Paris Hilton's sex tape, and the funny part is that it wasn't even all that dark in the area the characters were in to begin with. You know you're screwing up when you're attempting a serious scene and the audience is laughing harder and harder as time goes on.
And while the movie has an intriguing concept, everything about the script is just bad. It goes from one absolutely preposterous, intelligence-insulting situation to the next. For example, how does one infected person manage to track the group through most of London completely undetected? Secondly, is it just me, or is it absolutely ludicrous to think that characters can survive being completely enveloped in nerve gas by just pulling their shirts over their noses? Since when is nerve gas equal to a fart? And thirdly, being infected yet not showing symptoms because your eyes are two different colors makes no sense at all. And get this: the movie completely steals a sequence from Grindhouse. There's a bit in the Planet Terror half of Grindhouse where a helicopter leans forward and chops up a whole platoon of zombies. And guess what? 28 Weeks Later does the exact same thing. I hope Robert Rodriguez sees the movie and sues the production team back to the Stone Age for ripping him off.
Another problem is that I just didn't care about the characters at all. The movie never gave me a reason to. By the halfway point, I was hoping that all the characters would be killed just so the movie would be over and I could go home. The cast obviously doesn't care, as all of them are phoning in their performances. The wardrobe department might as well have issued everyone T-shirts that said "Just Collecting A Paycheck."
Everyone involved with this abortion of a movie should be ashamed of themselves. If I were Danny Boyle and Alex Garland, I'd track down and violently assault the cast and crew for daring to sully the good name of 28 Days Later with this garbage. You know your movie is awful when the best part of it is the trailers that play before it. (FYI, we got the trailers for Resident Evil: Extinction, Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer, and Live Free or Die Hard. I'm sure all of them will be better than this movie.)
I'm just going to tell you all right now that if you want to see 28 Weeks Later, you should either wait until the movie is in a second-run cheap theater or simply download it online and watch it for free. That way, you won't be wasting too much money on this. I'm giving it two stars, and let us never speak of it again. Well, let us not speak of it until September or so, so I can tear the movie a new one when I give it a full S@TM review.
I've got plans to see Shrek 3 next weekend and Pirates of the Caribbean 3 the weekend after that, so hopefully those will be better than this. And I'm hoping that I'll get at least a chance to see Bug too, because that looks awesome.
Friday, May 11, 2007; 11:11 a.m.
I mentioned back on Tuesday that I was working on a rewrite of my 28 Days Later review, and I got it completed last night. So yeah, go check out the new-and-improved review to get yourself amped up for the sequel, which is in theaters today.
As it stands right now, I'm aiming to have Borat be the next review that I do off the Netflix list, but I've got a few in the collection that I've got my eye on. I've said a million times that I was wanting to do Jackie Brown, which I may do concurrently with Grindhouse just so I can get the rest of the Quentin Tarantino directorial catalogue done in one fell swoop. (And no, I'm not counting his segment from Four Rooms.) I'm also looking at the live-action Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles sequels and the Ghostbusters movies. Or maybe even a "Brad Pitt: Nihilist" double feature of Seven and Fight Club. I could even throw in Twelve Monkeys and make it a triple feature.
Man, it seems like I write a post like this once a month. I really need to work on some fresher material.
Wednesday, May 9, 2007; 10:24 p.m.
Remember all those posts I made a few months back about how I wanted to write a movie? I miss those days. Though truth be told, I haven't thought about it in a while. And I'm not exactly 100% sure why that is.
I got so into the idea of writing a script, but things slowed down, stalled, and eventually stopped. It might be that I was really into wanting to write one, but when it came time to actually do it... I really didn't know what I was doing. Is it that hard to think up some kind of plot or narrative or anything like that? I'll be the first to admit that I'm not all that great when it comes to narrative writing, but it came to that script, it's like I kept running headlong into a brick wall.
Could it be that I simply don't have a story to tell? I came up with plenty of scenes and a little bit of dialogue that I liked, but I couldn't think of any way to connect them, any way to put them together into anything resembling a story. What's my deal, anyway? If you put a million monkeys in a room with a million typewriters, they could probably churn out something before I could even get started.
If this remains something that I really want to do, I'll hopefully be able to get something rolling once I get my whole current situation worked out. Maybe when I get some real life experiences in, beyond all the goofy stuff I did with my college buddies so many years ago, I can come up with something that will put all the pieces together. At this point, I'm not even worried about writing something that I can produce into an actual feature film. I just want to see if I can take that first step.
But as with everything, we'll have to see where it goes from here.
Tuesday, May 8, 2007; 11:17 p.m.
In other news, I've been doing a little writing lately. I was reading my review of 28 Days Later this past weekend, and I decided that with the sequel coming out on Friday, now was as good a time as any to go ahead and give it a total rewrite.
Really, a rewrite was in order, since the version I have up now isn't as good as it could be. It's woefully short, has a few glaring spelling errors, and I didn't get very in depth. It's basically, "Intro, plot synopsis, it was a good movie, the end." So I figured a rewrite was in order.
I'll hopefully have it up by Friday to coincide with the release of 28 Weeks Later. But if not, at least I'll get it taken care of. Nothing wrong with a little self-improvement here and there.
Friday, May 11, 2007; 8:27 p.m.
So yesterday I made a post about Paris Hilton facing a month and a half in jail, and how I felt that she believes she's above the law by trying to talk Arnold Schwarzenegger into giving her a pardon. As you can tell, that post is no longer here. I got to thinking about it after I posted it, and I made the choice to delete it. It's one of those deals where in retrospect, it just wasn't a post I wanted to make. Besides, in the extremely slim chance a member of the Hilton family reads this blog, I don't want to get sued for libel.
But I really do get the impression that Paris believes she's above the law. I don't care what her excuse is; how do you not realize that speeding and driving on a suspended license while you're on probation is probably a bad idea? I also fail to understand just why she's famous in the first place. Aren't you supposed to work your way to fame, as opposed to getting famous and then working? And it's not like she's done anything that's been any good. Pretty much all of her movies have gone direct-to-video; her album just barely sold enough copies to earn gold certification from the RIAA and dropped completely off the Billboard charts in a couple of weeks; and I have no clue how The Simple Life lasted one season, let alone five seasons on two different networks. (I will admit, though, that I watched a few episodes of The Simple Life during the third and fourth seasons, and I thought Nicole Richie was funny. Paris... not so much.)
I just don't get it. I don't get it at all. I know Paris is only supposed to go to jail for 45 days, but can we instead drop her, Lindsay Lohan, Britney Spears, and all these other no-talent skanky party girls on a deserted island so we never have to hear from them again? Is that too much to ask? At the very least, can we lock Nicole Richie in a room for a week, with nothing but Krispy Kreme donuts to eat? If Kirstie Alley and Anna Nicole Smith can lose weight, can't she gain it?
Sunday, May 6, 2007; 4:22 p.m.
Just got back from seeing Spider-Man 3 in Frankfort. And while I liked it, I do have some complaints. I'll get into all that, but first, I have to say that this post is probably gonna have some spoilers, so you readers who haven't seen Spidey 3 yet and don't want to know anything about it might want to just skip to the end.
Okay, want to know my beefs with the movie? One is that it seems Gwen Stacy's role wasn't all that big. She's an important part of the Spider-Man mythos, but it seems like she was just pushed into the background here. Yeah, she might serve as one of the catalysts for the drama between Peter and Mary Jane, but I never really got the feeling that she was any sort of rival to Mary Jane at all. There could have been an opportunity for a love triangle between Peter, Mary Jane, and Gwen, but the movie instead falls back on the Peter/Mary Jane/Harry triangle from the first movie. For all she was worth, they could have given Gwen some other unrelated name and it wouldn't have made any sort of difference at all.
I also didn't like the fact that Venom was killed off. Does every comic book villain have to be killed off in the movie version? Green Goblin's death is understandable, as it pushed Harry's character arc forward. But can't we have a villain that lives to fight another day? Aside from Lex Luthor, I think the only comic villain to get away at the end was Scarecrow in Batman Begins. So Green Goblin is dead, Doctor Octopus is dead, Venom is dead, and I don't see them using Sandman again, at least not for a while. If they keep up this trend, they'll end up having to use villains that could come across as being lame, like Vulture or Rhino. This sort of thing was one of the problems with Tim Burton and Joel Schumacher's Batman movies. Joker, Penguin, and Two-Face all ended up dead and Riddler became a shell of his former self, when sequels featuring them could have been really good. And although there is a teensy bit of the Venom symbiote left, I doubt it'll ever come up in another sequel.
Another problem I had with it is that there was just too much going on. If they'd cut the plot in half, with Sandman and Harry as the villains of one movie and Venom as the villain of another, then it might not have been as worrisome. I've heard that Sam Raimi doesn't exactly like Venom, so I assume that he just shoehorned the character in here to shut Avi Arad up. It just feels like there's so much going on, but there still a feeling that some scenes were left out. There just seemed to be some gaps in the story. Like how does Spider-Man reprising the upside-down kiss with Gwen, and her ditching Peter in the middle of the date lead to Eddie Brock's claim that Peter "stole [his] girl"? Of course, this probably means there'll be either a three-hour unrated cut or a huge number of deleted scenes when the movie is released on DVD in a few months.
However, everything else about the movie is fantastic. Raimi's direction is sound, the acting - especially Tobey Maguire and Topher Grace - is great, and the special effects are amazing. Plus the cameos from Stan Lee and Bruce Campbell are almost worth the price of admission itself. Outside of my above complaints, the movie isn't too bad at all. It's actually a lot of fun. And really, isn't that what most movies should be? I might have to give the movie a second viewing to really get a feel for it, but I'm going to give Spider-Man 3 three and a half stars, leaning towards four.
And now to wait for Spider-Man 4.
Saturday, May 5, 2007; 8:32 a.m.
I don't know how it is in any of the other 49 states or around the world, but all everyone around here has been talking about for the last two weeks is the Kentucky Derby. And I couldn't care less.
I think I'm the only person in the entire state of Kentucky that doesn't seem to care about some stupid horse race. I don't see its appeal. It's not like the Super Bowl or the World Series or the NBA Finals, where there's an exciting six-month build to the big show. You never hear anything whatsoever about horse racing until the Derby. I don't, at least. At then two weeks before the Derby, the entire state loses its mind for what? A bunch of horses that run in a circle for two minutes? At least NASCAR races go 200 laps. Why not have the horses run ten, or even five laps?
Maybe I should be a little excited, this year, considering that there are two horses from this county in the Derby. But am I excited? Nope, can't say that I am. The truth of the matter is that I'll be happy when this day is over, so I can go a year without having to hear about this stupid Kentucky Derby.
Friday, May 4, 2007; 11:38 a.m.
Other than watching the Brian Pillman DVD and repeatedly conquering Resident Evil 4, there really isn't a whole lot of anything going on. Life never was all that exciting or anything, but man, it seems like things are a lot more boring lately. I'm sure I could alleviate some of this boredom by getting back in the habit of turning my instant messengers on. I'm sure my absence has been noticed by those of you I regularly chat with, and I'm sure you guys are probably wondering where I am, so I'll explain.
Remember a week or two ago when I was sick? I stopped logging into any of my IM programs at night, figuring that I'd probably get into a really good conversation and be up all night when I could use plenty of rest instead. And ever since, I've just gotten lax in turning any of them on. Sorry 'bout that, folks; I'll try correcting that soon.
But moving along, I'm going to try and come up with some plans this weekend. I could use a haircut, plus Spider-Man 3 comes out today, so I'm hoping to do one or both of those sometime this weekend. Of course, if I had my way, I'd be at the movies all month. I'm trying to make plans to see Shrek 3 and Pirates of the Caribbean 3, and I'd love to see 28 Weeks Later and Bug when they come out, but it just comes down to money and opportunity. Considering that my current financial and transportation situations, finding the money and opportunity to see any of those movies is going to be tricky.
But I'm working on that. Or trying to, at least. It goes back to that whole "moving forward" thing I've talked about before. But I'm really wondering just how far that I've moved forward so far. The year is almost half over, and I'm barely making baby steps in the right direction. Baby steps is a good start, don't get me wrong. At least it's better than spinning my wheels. But I guess I was expecting to leap headfirst into things. I've always been like that, always expecting things to be in full swing when I get there instead of trying to build them up first. I guess that's why things are the way they are. But here's hoping for changes for the better.
Wow, in just four paragraphs, this post seems like it's been all over the place. That's what happens when I decide to type up a post with no topic in mind and end up going with a "stream of consciousness" style. I'm not even sure that I can find away that it all connects seamlessly. But hey, it's better than one of those lame "I got nothing" posts. At least it's something, right?
Thursday, May 3, 2007; 8:01 p.m.
I posted on Tuesday that I was making my way through Resident Evil 4's main game for the tenth time, and I just beat it a few minutes ago. The final score: 968 freaks killed with seven deaths of my own, and a final playing time of six hours, four minutes, and two seconds.
Those seven deaths were all due to me either doing something stupid or accidentally killing Ashley. She's such a frail girl. I mean, the poor dear can't even handle a rocket launcher to the face. Though that's my fault, since I was all out of rifle ammo at the time and I had to use something to stop those two freaks operating the rolling death machine. So I figured it was either fire wildly with a machine gun or try something I could get a good shot with. Turns out that a rocket couldn't exactly fit between the bars between myself and Ashley. A few other times were thanks to me meeting the business end of those big Thwomps just beyond the bug cave. Leon went and got himself squashed three or four times, but that's his fault for not being squash-proof. I mean, isn't everybody squash-proof nowadays?
So yeah, I've beaten Resident Evil 4 ten times. Go me. I don't even think I've beat the other five Resident Evil games ten times combined, which goes to show just how addictive Resident Evil 4 is. I think I'm going to stick with ten for a while, maybe wait a little bit before I even start thinking about taking an eleventh shot at it. But knowing me, I'll probably jump back into it again in a week or two. Curse this infernal game!
Wednesday, May 2, 2007; 9:59 p.m.
Anybody who knows me knows that I'm a fan of pro wrestling. I have been since around 1993 or so. And in those fourteen years, I've seen probably hundreds of different gimmicks come and go from different promotions. But one of my favorite characters of all-time has to be Brian Pillman's "loose cannon" gimmick.
I bring this up because I just finished watching the first disc of the WWE-produced DVD set about Pillman, which I got in the mail today from Netflix. Why I don't own it yet, I have no idea. Of course, there's at least a dozen WWE DVDs that I really need to add to my collection, but haven't gotten around to them for one reason or another. But thanks for offering the Pillman DVD, Netflix. You rock. And roll. All night long. And most of the day too.
But back to my original point. Pillman's "loose cannon" gimmick is one of my favorite wrestling characters ever; his ECW debut and the gun angle are two moments that I remember with great fondness. The gimmick was way ahead of its time, absolute brilliance if you ask me. And while I love, love, love the "loose cannon" character, I'm also very happy to see them give the Hollywood Blondes the credit that they should have gotten back then. I didn't get to see a whole lot of the Hollywood Blondes since I didn't really get into WCW until right around the time they broke up, but I do remember them being great in the ring and deserving of a lot more than what WCW gave them. That "Flare For The Old" segment alone, which I had never seen prior to seeing this DVD, is proof enough of that.
While I'm relatively familiar with most of Pillman's story, the feature documentary is still a very awesome watch. I think Pillman was to pro wrestling what Andy Kaufman was to comedy; with both of them, you never knew what was real and what was an act. The gimmick was solid gold, which only makes me wonder how things would have gone had Pillman not mangled his leg in that car accident before WWE hired him. The official statement was that he died of arteriosclerotic heart disease, but part of me wonders just how much of a toll all the painkillers he was hooked on took on him.
Of course, I'm giving the DVD a thumbs-up, and I haven't even seen the second disc yet. (It's currently #1 on my Netflix queue, so I'll be watching it soon.) It's a definite recommendation to every wrestling fan, especially fans that are new to the game. So why are you still reading this? Go buy it already.
Tuesday, May 1, 2007; 9:39 p.m.
So let's start May off with a new review, shall we? I've finished off that review of Pirates of the Caribbean 2, which you can check out here. I'm going to get back to watching Veronica Mars, so have fun reading the review.
Tuesday, May 1, 2007; 2:31 a.m.
Welcome to the month of May, dear readers, and welcome to the Matt Sutton Experience. I'm expecting this month to be a good one, since in for weeks or so, I'll be celebrating a quarter-century upon this spinning blue rock we call Earth. So I'm expecting all the posts this month to be a little more upbeat. Not that all my posts are downers or anything, but you know what I mean.
And just because I'm addicted to it, I've jumped into Resident Evil 4 for the tenth time. I'm currently at the part where you have to play as Ashley, and I think I'm making pretty decent time. I probably could have made a little bit better time if, after the Night of the Living Dead cabin near the beginning, I hadn't decided to take both sides of the fork in the road to boost my body count. I guess I'm trying to top my last number of 1,003 victims. Why I'm picking up the game so soon after beating it the last time, I'm not exactly sure. Other than having way too much fun playing it, that is. But I think I'm going let it cool off after I get through it this time. Ten is a pretty good number, I think.
I'd say that I'm hoping to fly through the game, but considering it'll probably take me a grand total of at least three hours to play through the island and the rest of the castle, so "flying through it" might be a bit of an overstatement. I might get through it over the next two or three days, depending on how much of the game I play in each sitting. And I'm still surprised I played the entire island all at once last week, too. But anyway, I'm sure that I'll have that big tenth Resident Evil 4 victory in no time. So I've got that to look forward to this week.
More on that as it happens.
Monday, April 30, 2007; 2:09 p.m.
Is it me, or is time really flying lately? It feels like New Year's was just the other day, and now it's the last day of April. It'll be Christmas before we know it, and it won't be long after that that the decade is over and VH1 is doing I Love The 00s. Because it's either that or another awful Flavor of Love spinoff.
And with it being the end of April, I'm preparing to start the countdown to one of the biggest days of the year, the birthday of yours truly. The countdown starts tomorrow, and I'm expecting it to last somewhere in the neighborhood of four weeks, give or take a day or two. I'm waiting to see how things go before I start making any big plans for the big day, but I'm thinking of putting together one of those "State of the MSX" posts. I figure the best times to do those posts are around my birthday and New Year's, so I think you can expect one of those in four weeks or so.
But right now, I'm going to get back to work on my Pirates 2 review. That's it for this post.
Saturday, April 28, 2007; 4:36 p.m.
Hey look, we've finally hit 600 posts here at the MSX. Huzzah.
In other news, I mentioned yesterday that I was taking another shot at Resident Evil 4. I thought I was right around the first appearance of the invisible bugs, but in actuality, I was actually just before the castle's lava pit. Either way, I just beat the game. My final time was six hours, 32 minutes, and 34 seconds. I also passed the 1,000 mark in the "enemies killed" category for the first time, with 1,003 freaks sent to their death. The event was marred by four deaths. Two of them were Ashley not being able to defend herself from freaks or run away from dynamite, while the other two were me being careless. Either way, that's still victory number nine in the record books.
I've also passed the $10,000,000 mark in Leon's personal worth, with 10,061,100 in my pocket. I still have lots of treasure from the last two runs that I never sold Trader Joe, so I'm guessing that when I do that, I'll have a few million more. Not that it matters or anything, because since I already have the Chicago Typewriter, infinite rocket launcher, and the turned-up-to-eleven Handcannon, I don't need to really see Trader Joe for anything.
And having I played the entire island section of the game in one two-hour sitting, I really need to get up and stretch. So here's to winning Resident Evil 4 for the ninth time, and here's to my 600th post. Cheers.
Friday, April 27, 2007; 8:37 p.m.
Holy freaking crap, today's been boring. I don't thing a whole lot of anything worth note happened today. Not helping anything is the fact that the weather was all gray and cloudy and rainy and blah, so yeah, it's been one of those days.
But I did kill some time today by jumping back into Resident Evil 4 for the ninth time. I don't remember the exact details of my location in the game right now, but I'm in the castle, and I believe I'm somewhere around the first appearance of the invisible bugs. Don't quote me on that, but I did make lots and lots of progress in the game this afternoon. Victory number nine is inevitable, folks. And after that, maybe I'll go for number ten. Sigh, Resident Evil 4 is so addictive.
Wednesday, April 25, 2007; 11:17 p.m.
So when I wasn't finishing up that Pulse review and watching Heroes, I was catching up on some reading. Specifically, "Batman: The Killing Joke" out of DC's "The Stories of Alan Moore" compilation. I absolutely love "The Killing Joke," and the more I read it, the more I start to imagine how it would look as an episode of the old Batman animated series. I was thinking about that earlier, so I hope DC Comics is reading this because I'm going to pitch them an idea.
Bruce Timm announced at Comic-Con last year that he was planning to do a direct-to-video animated adaptation of the "Death and Return of Superman" storyline. If this is a success, I'd like to see DC start doing feature-length animated versions of classic stories out of the comics. Like take "The Killing Joke" or "Whatever Happened to the Man of Tomorrow?", maybe even "Superman: Red Son" or "The Dark Knight Returns," do an animated movie based on it, then make a big deal out of its release. Maybe even show it on Cartoon Network or Boomerang around the time of its release as a promotional tool.
It could be something in the vein of the animated movies Marvel has done lately with Iron Man and the Avengers; maybe even DC could go as far as to release one or two animated movies a year to coincide with whatever superhero is getting a live-action theatrical film around that time. That would be something I could get behind. Of course, this is all just wishful thinking. And I'm sure that if DC did take this idea and run with it, it'd more than likely all hinge upon the success of that initial "Death of Superman" release. But here's hoping that this is something DC and the Warner Brothers animation department considers. That is, if they want great big truckfuls of cash to be delivered to their doorstep. Because it's a license to print money, folks.
Wednesday, April 25, 2007; 9:37 p.m.
I just finished watching Monday night's episode of Heroes thanks to my usual not-quite-legal means, and boy, did I miss this show. I really hate it when these shows take two-month hiatuses during each season. It's like they air four or five episodes and get everybody in a good groove, then air reruns for six weeks. It's one thing to take a mid-season break in December, I can handle that. But come on. How long can it take them to film 23 episodes that, if one doesn't count the commercials, are between 40 and 45 minutes long? Even ones that are heavy on special effects like Heroes and Smallville, it shouldn't be too long, should it?
The only reason I can think of is that they take these breaks every so often in order to put some spit and polish on the shows. Maybe episodes need to be re-written to better suit the schedules of certain cast members, or even re-written to better please fans of the show. Or it could even come down to changes in how the show is made, like how Heroes's shapeshifter's morphing effect changed between this week's episode and her appearances prior to the hiatus. I guess the whole occasional hiatus thing makes sense to those that actually work on these shows, but to me, a viewer, it's frustrating because I don't have a real clue as to why these shows would take a two-month break so close to the end of the season. So if somebody from NBC wants to explain it to me, be my guest.
Now that I've got that little rant out of the way, we can move along. This week's episode, ".07%," wasn't too bad at all. It certainly wasn't "Company Man," but then again, that episode was almost too awesome. Where the episode succeeds is in answering a question or two from earlier in the season, as well as moving just about every major storyline forward in some way. I mentioned a long while back that I wished they'd do something with the whole Niki/Jessica thing, and while I'm not exactly sure where they're going with the "Linderman 'borrows' Micah" angle, at least it's something. I'm really enjoying both Malcolm McDowell as Linderman and Ali Larter as Jessica, so any reason to have either of them on the screen is a good one. Now if they'd just explain what the whole deal with Niki and Jessica's split personality thing is, I'd be a happy boy. Maybe they can have it climax like the "Clark Kent vs. Evil Superman" scene from Superman 3, where Niki and Jessica split into two people and beat the everloving crap out of each other. That'd be awesome.
And how about that ending scene, with Hiro meeting his badass samurai doppelganger from the future? Oh man, I hope they get into a swordfight next week. Then the show can pull the trigger on what they've been hinting at all season and have Hiro fight a Tyrannosaurus Rex. Put a Hiro/Hiro swordfight, Hiro slaying a dinosaur, and a Niki vs. Jessica brawl in the same episode, and it would be the greatest episode of any show since television was invented.
And just how awesome is Sylar? I mean, really, the dude is hardcore. How evil do you have to be to telekinetically stab a guy in the back of the head with a giant piece of broken glass, then pin another guy to the floor by jabbing paintbrushes through his wrists and ankles before you scalp him and eat his brain? Very, very evil. I mean, how much more evil could Sylar be? Barring the shocking revelation that his parents are Freddy Krueger and Linda Blair's character from The Exorcist, I think the answer is none. None more evil.
But yeah, Heroes is pretty rockin', and this week's episode was no exception. I'm kinda bummed that there are only four more episodes until the end of the season. And after that, I don't expect season two to start until October. And I doubt this season will be released on DVD until just before then, maybe in mid-September. Hopefully it'll be out before then, but in the event of a mid-September release date, that'll give me plenty of time to save up my pennies.
Wednesday, April 25, 2007; 10:24 a.m.
I've been building it up here for a while, but I've finally got that review of Pulse done. So now I can quit talking about it and actually post it. Go check it out here, and remember, the Internet... it's EVIL.
Tuesday, April 24, 2007; 5:26 p.m.
Sweet merciful crap, it's hot outside. And since Casa de Sutton's air conditioner isn't entirely functional at this point, it's like an oven in here. Maybe Al Gore and all that global warming propaganda was right after all, because Mother Nature just doesn't seem to know what to do with herself. Winter was all rain, spring is setting up to be all heat, so what's summer going to be like?
That is information that I am absolutely dreading to learn firsthand. Heat and I do not get along very well. You know that Looney Tunes cartoon where Bugs Bunny and Daffy Duck find the abominable snowman, and how at the end, the snowman is all "gosh, it's hot" before he melts? Give me a fluffy little rabbit named George, and that's totally me. I'm not a very big fan of warm weather. So hopefully, the temperature will be more agreeable sooner or later.
Monday, April 23, 2007; 5:10 p.m.
I'm still not feeling the best in the world today. The headache has become more of a dull annoyance, but the rest of me is feeling like crap. I barely felt like getting out of bed this morning, and I'd be perfectly fine with going back to bed. Did you ever see that one Saturday Night Live skit where Chris Farley takes this new brand of NyQuil made of horse tranquilizers or whatever, and he sleeps right through four or five different illnesses? Some of that could come in pretty handy right now.
But regardless, work on my Pulse review is coming along nicely. Quite a bit of progress has been made yesterday and today, and as I said on Friday, I'm hoping to have it done within the next week or two. Something like that. So I hope you're looking forward to that.
I'm gonna go relax. I could use it, with the way I'm feeling.
Sunday, April 22, 2007; 5:01 p.m.
Ugh, I have had the most awful headache. Sometimes it aches just enough to bug me, other times it hurts so much that I can barely see straight. And it's been like this since Wednesday or Thursday, too. If this goes on much longer, my head's gonna explode. It'll be like that scene in Scanners. And that's the last thing I need right now.
My mom thinks it might be a hint that glasses could be in my future, since most of the pain is right around my eyes. That'll especially suck for me, since I was rather proud of the fact that I'm the only member of the immediate family that doesn't need glasses. If I'd needed glasses ten or twelve years ago, I wouldn't have been so worried about it. But I really don't feel like teaching myself any sort of new routine concerning glasses right now. So let's hope this headache is a temporary thing, something not worthy of purchasing eyewear.
Friday, April 20, 2007; 11:00 p.m.
Contrary to what I thought last night, the Pulse review isn't coming along too badly. I'm still working on it, though. I'll hopefully have it up within a week or two.
As I've said in the past, I've got quite a list of movies that I would like to review. I've started work on Pirates 2, while I actually have a review of the Amityville Horror remake that's almost done. The only thing stopping me from finishing it is that I'd like to try and draw comparisons between it and the original Amityville Horror, which I have yet to see. It's in the top ten of my Netflix queue, so hopefully I'll have reviews of both of them sometime in the coming months.
I've got anywhere from ten to fifteen other movies waiting in the wings, the number varying on whatever mood I'm in at any given time, so I certainly won't have a whole lot of time off when it comes to reviewing in the near future. Never let it be said that I'm not committed to my art.
Thursday, April 19, 2007; 11:36 p.m.
I got Pulse in the mail from Netflix in the mail yesterday, and after watching it once, I think it's going to be one of those "disappointingly bad" kind of reviews. Those are the toughest to write. Watching Pulse, I can see that it has so much potential to be a great movie. There's a very good movie inside it, desperately longing to be free. But unfortunately, what we've got isn't exactly what I'd call a good movie. I don't even know if I'd call it mediocre. It's just kinda... there. And that's terrible.
I hate writing "disappointingly bad" reviews. If I'm going to write a negative review about a movie, I'd much rather the movie be the kind of bad that makes me angry when I think about it. Not the kind of bad that makes me say, "Aw, what a wasted opportunity." That's what bugs me so much about Pulse, because it's really hard for me to pin my finger on what went wrong with it. Was it the direction? The script? The cast? A combination of things? I don't know. But what I do know is that they could have done something great with Pulse, but failed. It's like having two plus two ready to go, but not being able to come up with four.
The thing is, I want to like Pulse. I really and truly do. But I can't. And I don't really know where to begin when it comes to writing about it. I've barely gotten past the opening paragraph. Then again, nobody ever said this writing thing would be easy. I'm sure I'll come up with something. I usually do. It just might take me a little longer than usual.
Wednesday, April 18, 2007; 2:24 p.m.
Finished Cell about ten minutes ago, and now that I'm done, I really don't want it to end. Couldn't Stephen King have given the book one more chapter? But I guess that the ending might be the best in the long run, since it leaves the epilogue open for interpretation. Which makes sense, since you can think up any ending you want without being disappointed by what the writer came up with.
So what do I think about Cell, now that I've completed it? I loved it. A lot. I can't wait for the movie version. I mentioned in one of my early posts that the book had a very 28 Days Later/Dawn of the Dead '04 kind of vibe, but as it progressed, it switched gears and started going in the same direction as The Omega Man. With all that going on, a movie version could be awesome, and I'd totally see it.
Cell gets a thumbs-up, so quit reading this and go read that.
Tuesday, April 17, 2007; 4:00 p.m.
I've mentioned it before, and I don't want to sound like too much of a shill, but this Google Analytics thing I've got plugged into the MSX is pretty cool. The fact that I've had visitors coming in from five other continents boggles my mind. I joke that I only have three or four readers, all of whom are from the States, but the fact that I've had readers from any other country, let alone from all over the world, is very cool.
I'm very grateful that I have so much as one reader, so having several from all parts of the globe is awesome. Even if the people visiting were merely passing through, I'm still glad that they visited. And if they've stuck around, I'm surprised. I'm still surprised I even have my three or four American readers. But hey, I wouldn't trade them for anything.
As a follow-up to the Resident Evil 4 post I made earlier, I just beat the game. Oh yeah.
The final stats: 969 enemies killed and a total playing time of seven hours, 32 minutes, and 30 seconds. Not exactly my quickest time, but I got the job done for the eighth - count 'em, eighth - time. So I'm pretty stoked.
Monday, April 16, 2007; 4:14 p.m.
We recently subscribed to the Starz movie channel package here at Casa de Sutton, which I think was a wise move because it afforded me the opportunity to see Wolf Creek in the wee hours of the night last night. I hadn't seen it since last May, but oh man, it's just as awesome as I remembered it being.
Everything I said in my review of it still holds true nearly a year later. Wolf Creek is absolutely harrowing, an emotionally disturbing experience if you let yourself get wrapped up in it. And the balance between the beauty of the Australian Outback and the horror of the events depicted only makes the movie that much more haunting.
After the movie ended, I started flipping through the other Starz channels and landed on Silent Hill. I'd have probably watched it too, but after Wolf Creek, I didn't think I could handle much more horror. Plus it was 4:45 in the morning, and I was ready to get some sleep.
But yeah, Wolf Creek is pretty darn awesome.
I also jumped back into the main portion of Resident Evil 4 during this past weekend. And thanks to the heavy artilery, I'm already up to the island. I've been killed three times, but no matter, because I'm still cutting a bloody swath of dominance through the game yet again.
Ain't no game gonna hold me back.
Monday, April 16, 2007; 12:06 p.m.
And here we are. I probably could have stood to make a post or two on Saturday and Sunday, now that I think about it. I had a little daily routine and everything. But I didn't have any real material to work with over the weekend, and I didn't feel like doing any of my lame "I got nothing" posts. So yeah, I kinda forgot about the blog during the last few days.
I did, however, use the weekend to put a bit of work into my pending Pirates 2 review. It's coming along splendidly, if you ask me. On the agenda for later in the week, however, is my review of Pulse. I haven't seen it since its theatrical run back last August, but I remember it being a little less than stellar. Maybe I'll like it a little more once I see it on DVD? That's always a possibility. It happens lots of times.
My hope is that if I do give Pulse a bad review, it'll be a bad review in the vein of BloodRayne or Superman IV. Those are lots of fun to write, as opposed to the "I don't hate the movie, I'm just disappointed" kind of review. So here's hoping that if I still don't like Pulse, I'll dislike it enough to tear it a new one. We'll just have to see how that goes.
Friday, April 13, 2007; 7:06 p.m.
Hey, it's Friday the 13th. Awesome.
Don't really have anything planned for the weekend. I'm more than likely going to spend tonight watching a Friday the 13th movie, which will probably be my personal favorite, Part VI: Jason Lives. After that, I'm probably just going to lie around and be lazy all weekend unless something comes up. Not that there's anything wrong with that.
I wanted to go see the Aqua Teen Hunger Force this weekend, but since it's a limited release, it isn't playing anywhere within fifty miles. Same goes for Hot Fuzz's release next week. Since I'm currently without transportation - or at the very least, any transportation that might be interested in seeing those movies too - I think I'll end up trying to wait until they hit Netflix or maybe make an attempt at downloading them in a few weeks. I could probably try downloading Hot Fuzz now, since it came out in England back in February. But I'd rather see it in theaters first, so I might just wait to see how things go between now and this time next week.
But I'm gonna go watch Jason Lives right now. Later.
Thursday, April 12, 2007; 3:53 p.m.
I just finished watching Kairo - the Japanese version of Pulse - and I'm not exactly sure what to make of it. I say that because I don't believe the movie made any damn sense whatsoever. It seems like it's just a compilation of scary visuals, and I think there's some kind of commentary about how the Internet shouldn't be a replacement for real-life social interaction or something like that. I don't really know and I don't really care, because the movie didn't seem like it had a point in the long run.
The movie runs for two hours, and that's way too long for a movie where nothing happens. It just moves from scene to scene without much of anything connecting them. And truth be told, I really had no clue what was going on at any given time. They'll bring something up, then forget it ever existed a few scenes later. And then there's the idea that people are either committing mass suicides or outright vanishing off the face of the earth, but you wouldn't know that from watching the beginning of the movie. Kairo's world seems quite tiny even before the trouble starts brewing, especially when you consider the movie focuses on no other characters but the three or four leads and very rarely shows anything happening in the world around them. Though I guess in a movie about an ever-mounting sense of loneliness, it's only right to have a very small amount of people in it.
But what gets me is that there doesn't really seem to be much of a story being told. As I said, there are lots of plot holes, and while it could probably be blamed on a loss in translation, I grew more and more clueless as the movie progressed. The remake might not have been all that great, but at least it had something resembling a story. But nope, not Kairo. As far as I can tell, there's no true sense of coherence to be found in Kairo, which is sad because everything else about the movie is pretty good. The acting is serviceable, the direction by Kiyoshi Kurosawa (no relation to Akira Kurosawa) is very good, and the music composed by Takefumi Haketa is excellent.
The thing is, I don't know exactly how I'd rate Kairo if I was asked to. I liked just about everything, but the thoroughly nonsensical plot really took me out of it, which I'm going to blame on cultural differences. I'm sure somebody understands it, and I doubt it'd be an American. However, I will give Kairo a recommendation to the most devoted of J-Horror fans and as of right now, give it a very confused thumbs-in-the-middle. I might give the movie a second look before I send it back to Netflix, but yeah, I wasn't 100% sold on Kairo. It's not an awful movie, it's just... different.
Wednesday, April 11, 2007; 2:33 p.m.
So I mentioned a while back that I was going to compile a list of the different scenes, scenarios, and moments I wanted to use in the script I was hoping to write one day. I'm up to about 25 or 26, and I'm stuck there, so I believe that I could move forward and fill in the gaps as I go.
But the catch is, while I have a concept, I don't have a real plot. I don't want to go into this thing without a beginning, middle, and end in mind, and I don't have any of those just yet. I'll admit I'm not the most skilled writer there is, but come on, I shouldn't be completely blanking on this. Should I?
While I do an extremely vague idea about what kind of script I want to write, I'm not exactly sure how I want to write it or what direction I want to take it in. Thank God I don't do this professionally, otherwise I'd spend all my time banging my head against the wall in frustration. I don't know if I'd call it writer's block, but whatever is causing this lack of inspiration and imagination is infuriating.
The real bummer is that this is something that I thought I could do. With all the movies that come out both theatrically and direct-to-video, it seemed awfully easy. But I figure that once I get the ball rolling with that oft-mentioned New Year's resolution of mine, I can find some inspiration somewhere and really get this thing going. I probably shouldn't get my hopes up too high about it, just in case I end up having to put it on the shelf indefinitely. No, I don't want to do that, but I'm just saying.
And if worse comes to worse, I can always concentrate solely on writing for "Sutton At The Movies." Doesn't hurt to stick with what I'm good at. The reviews seem to be popular with all three of my readers, and I have boatloads of fun writing them (especially the extremely negative ones, like Uwe Boll's movies). So if this whole screenplay thing doesn't work out, I at least have that to work on. Sure, writing those reviews is first and foremost a hobby to entertain myself, but at least it's something.
Tuesday, April 10, 2007; 9:47 a.m.
Aside from the writing, I've done a little more reading as well. I'm up to page 261 in Cell, and as I've said a zillion times in the past, but I'm really digging the book. I've got another ninety pages or so before I finish it up, but I almost don't want it to end. It's a really great book, and I wish I could discuss it deeper, but I figure that since I have some readers who may be interested in it, I don't want to give away anything major. (Though those who do want spoilers could check out the plot synopsis over at Cell's Wikipedia page.)
And though I don't want it to end, I can't wait to see how it does.
Tuesday, April 10, 2007; 9:11 a.m.
Haven't made any progress on the writing yet. At least, not when it comes to that screenplay I've discussed so much in the past. I have, however, put in a little bit of work on a review of Pirates of the Caribbean 2. I'm taking it slow, since even though the third Pirates movie comes out at the end of next month, I'm not setting any sort of deadlines for myself. I don't play nice with deadlines. Never have.
Besides, I'll soon have to put the Pirates review on hold for a little while, because I have another review that I plan to start working on within the next week or two. Currently on deck is a review of Pulse, a J-Horror remake from last year that stars Kristen Bell from Veronica Mars. It's currently in the top spot on my Netflix queue, and I should be getting the Japanese version of Pulse in the mail this afternoon. I figure that if I'm going to write a well-rounded review of a remake, I might as well see the source material first. Makes sense to me, anyway.
I've got a few more reviews lined up in the future, too. I've got my eye on about nine or ten movies near the top of my Netflix queue that I'd like to write about, and I still need to get off my lazy butt and write that Jackie Brown review I've been talking about for a year now.
I'll get to it eventually, I'm sure, but it's all just a matter of time.
Saturday, April 7, 2007; 11:31 a.m.
Talking about the weather has become something of a running theme, I guess, but I don't even know what to say about it anymore. The temperature was up in the 80s a week or two ago, there were thunderstorms on Tuesday, and now the temperature is cold, somewhere in the neighborhood of the 30s or 40s. It's like early winter weather. Isn't April supposed to be spring? Because that's what I was thinking, and what we're getting now isn't exactly spring weather.
It even snowed yesterday. I know, right? It didn't stick, so we didn't get any gigantic snowdrifts like it seems every other state in the country gets. But still, snow in April? I don't know how it is for other parts of the United States, but snow in April here is downright crazy.
You know, if this is how spring is going to be, I'm absolutely dreading summer.
Friday, April 6, 2007; 11:40 p.m.
I mentioned yesterday that I was making an attempt at beating Resident Evil 2 again. Well, I'm not trying anymore, since I just claimed victory. So I'm pretty happy with myself. :)
So I've absolutely kicked the everloving crap out of all the Resident Evil games I own. I could probably beat the first game again and unlock the rocket launcher with infinite ammo, but I'd have to beat the game in something like three hours or less. And folks, I'm not that good of a gamer. I'll probably end up buying a GameShark or something and unlock that game without even trying. I believe I've earned it.
And to revel in my victory, I'm gonna go watch Army of Darkness on AMC. Which reminds me... AMC is supposed to be "American Movie Classics," right? If that's the case, where do they get off showing Catwoman and Blues Brothers 2000? In what screwed-up society are those two movies considered classics? Bizarro World?
Friday, April 6, 2007; 6:13 p.m.
I'm sure everybody has seen the advertisements for Grindhouse by now. You know the ones, where Rose McGowan's got a machine gun for a leg. Yeah, those. For the uninitiated, the idea behind Grindhouse is that Quentin Tarantino and Robert Rodriguez each directed a movie in the style of '70s exploitation movies and put them together with some fake advertisements as a double feature. I caught it today, and I have to say that I was satisfied.
The first half of the bill, Rodriguez's zombie movie Planet Terror, was boatloads of fun. I'd have gone to see Planet Terror even without the whole grindhouse concept, but the gimmick only makes it that much more entertaining. The acting is engaging, the effects are disgustingly wonderful, and Rodriguez's direction is well-done, so I'll give Planet Terror a thumbs-up.
However, I don't know if I can say that I had the same enthusiasm when it came to Tarantino's Death Proof. Maybe it's because all my energy had been spent on Planet Terror and the mock trailers, but I thought the majority of Death Proof was kinda boring. I mean, there are good things about it. Tarantino's direction was great, and Kurt Russell was awesome, to the extent that whenever he isn't on the screen, everything else seems like it's lacking. I guess I went in expecting people getting run over in every scene, and got a 45-minute car chase and Rosario Dawson and some other actresses sitting around talking about their love lives and some random car chase movie only Tarantino has heard of. Death Proof does have some very exciting stunts, I'll give it that. But I'll also give it a thumbs-in-the-middle. I might end up liking it more when I get the chance to watch it by itself on DVD in a few months, but right now, I putting it as the lesser of the two movies.
And let's not forget those mock trailers. With Rodriguez's Machete at the beginning and Rob Zombie's Werewolf Women of the S.S., Edgar Wright's Don't, and Eli Roth's Thanksgiving during the intermission, the trailers just might be the best parts of the movie as a whole. And I know they're not for real movies, but I hope they all do get made eventually. Maybe if there's a Grindhouse 2 and Grindhouse 3?
At just over three hours long, Grindhouse is going to be a taxing experience if you don't like sitting in a theater for a long period of time, or if you just don't like (or get) the concept. And though I was worn out after just one movie, I still had a lot of fun with both movies and the experience as a whole. So I'm going to give Grindhouse four stars and a recommendation to those who are in the movie's target audience. And it's a definite DVD purchase for me, for sure.
Thursday, April 5, 2007; 11:56 p.m.
I talk a lot about Resident Evil 4 here at the MSX, primarily because it's such an awesome game. And after hearing some recent news, I have even more reason to go buy a Wii. Why? Because Capcom is releasing the budget-priced Resident Evil 4: Wii Edition. Playing the game with Wii-ified controls sounds awesome, but my favorite part of the story is this: featured on the game will be the previously PS2-exclusive "Separate Ways" sub-game and a trailer for the upcoming Wii-exclusive Resident Evil: Umbrella Chronicles. I'm really looking forward to anything related to Umbrella Chronicles at this point, but most of all, I'm enthused about "Separate Ways." Since it wasn't in the Gamecube version, getting the chance to play it is enough for me to go buy a Wii and re-buy Resident Evil 4. And I'm probably going to end up buying an X-Box 360 to get Resident Evil 5, barring Capcom going crazy and putting it on the Wii too.
I've also picked Resident Evil 2 back up lately. Man, this, Nemesis, and Code Veronica really could have stood an update in graphics when they were ported to the Gamecube. I mean, I'm glad to even have the games on a console I own, but playing games with PS1 graphics when the other games in the series are so gorgeous is a real bummer. Plus it doesn't help that the scripts are awful and the voice acting is lame beyond words. I think if Capcom really wanted to make truckloads of money, they could remake the other five games in the core franchise in the same style as Resident Evil 4. I'd totally buy them all.
Anyway, I'm getting back into Resident Evil 2. I've already beaten it once with Leon Kennedy, who you may recognize as the hero of RE4, and I'm playing through it again with the other character, Claire Redfield. I last left off maybe halfway through Claire's half of the story, and I've made lots of progress since I picked it back up. Of course, it helps that since I'm playing it on super-easy, I've got a grenade launcher, rocket launcher, two different machine guns, and a crossbow, all with infinite ammunition. I believe I'm only two or three bosses away from a victory, so it shouldn't be long if I stick with it.
And stick with it I shall. Victory, I'm coming for you.
Wednesday, April 4, 2007; 9:29 p.m.
Sometimes I wonder what I was put on this planet for. I'm sure everybody has moments like that, but I've been thinking about it a lot lately, and I'm not exactly sure why.
Maybe it's because I'm heading towards a transitional period. I probably should have taken care of that years ago, but I guess I'm a late bloomer. That has to be the only excuse, because I just can't think of any other reason for me to have waited so long to really start doing anything with my life. If I'd had this sort of initiative around 1999 or so, I probably wouldn't be worrying about this right now.
It really does bother me, though, that I'm getting such a late start in the game. I know I talked about this in a post a couple of weeks ago, but this sort of thing has a habit of really sticking with a person. But I figure that I'll get it sorted out with some time and effort. At least, I hope I do.
I just took a look at the clock, and noticed that it's 10:45. I started writing this thing an hour and fifteen minutes ago, and I've spent the last thirty of it wondering what else I wanted to say about what was troubling me. I was in kind of a blah place when I started, since thinking about this sort of thing really brings me down. But now that I've gotten even so much as that said, I kind of feel like I've started getting out of that place for tonight. You know, I really should start using this thing to vent more often. I'm shy when it comes to my problems, mainly because I don't want people thinking I'm trolling for sympathy with sob stories when I go off on a rant about what's bugging me. But I might have to start talking about things more often. It makes me feel better.
I don't plan on making it too much of a habit, since I'd like to keep up with the regular jovial yet sarcasm-tinged festivities you, all three members of my audience, have come to know and love about The Matt Sutton Experience. But since I've got this blog going, I might as well use it for a little bit of everything. Besides, it'd be false advertising if I call this thing "The Matt Sutton Experience" and don't give you the full Matt Sutton experience. Am I right? Of course I am.
I always am.
Tuesday, April 3, 2007; 10:03 p.m.
It's still raining outside. It's not as hard as it was a few hours ago, so I think it's about to let up. There's a few-and-far-between instances of lightning, but not enough to really amount to anything. So yeah, I think the thunderstorm has, for the most part, passed.
Anyway, I was going through the wrestling DVDs in my collection earlier, and I got to thinking about a post I made back in January. And upon reflection, I really wish I could have free reign in WWE's tape library for maybe a week. WWE has so much footage, I figure they could start their own full-fledged network, and run through every hour of it and not have to worry about repeating anything for about a decade. They could start the WWE Network and make it a premium channel like HBO or Cinemax, and I'd definitely subscribe to it, mainly because I don't get that "WWE 24/7" video-on-demand thing. And really, isn't video-on-demand be the same thing as pay-per-view? Because it sure sounds like it.
They've already done DVDs about ECW and the AWA, which are both awesome, and DVDs about quite a few individual wrestlers that I still need to get around to buying. (Why I don't already own most of them, I have no idea.) But there's still quite a lot they can do with the library. Take, for example, the box sets they've done for all the WrestleManias and the Royal Rumbles. I'm sure they'll get around to doing SummerSlam and Survivor Series box sets too, but what I'd really like to see is something similar to what they did with WrestleMania 3. Just take a single classic pay-per-view event from any of the promotions they own and do a fancy release for it. Even a bare-bones release would suffice, like the DVD of Barely Legal that they included with last year's One Night Stand.
They could also reprise the idea behind the cage match compilation and do compilations of certain gimmick matches. Don't tell me you wouldn't by a DVD featuring nothing but War Games matches. (Though if they did do a War Games DVD, I wouldn't expect them to include the one match WCW billed as "War Games 2000: Russo's Revenge," where they used the three-tiered cage from Ready To Rumble. I'll also admit that I'd really like to see WWE use that gimmick sometime.) I hear rumors that they're doing a ladder match compilation, so I don't think there's anything stopping them from doing a DVD of casket matches or even just one of any random gimmick match they could put together. Like they could segue from a street fight to a cage match, then to an I Quit match before going to a barbed wire match.
But those are just ideas. I really don't expect WWE's home video department to ever read this and use my suggestions, but there's no harm in a little wishful thinking. Besides, WWE is doing a great job with their releases as it is. They've got so many out there that I want, I'm almost glad I'm perpetually broke. Because if I did have money to burn, I'd go back to being broke because I'd be buying DVDs like crazy. But I guess that's the circle of life.
Or something like that.
Tuesday, April 3, 2007; 7:18 p.m.
Man, yesterday was so pretty, and today started out that way too. But then Mother Nature had to go and lose her damn mind by deciding that we'd had enough of that. I say that because it's raining like it's nobody's business right now. Like a full-blown thunderstorm. I might have to go build an ark and fetch me some animals soon.
Monday, April 2, 2007; 7:21 p.m.
It's such a beautiful day today, I should probably be out there enjoying all this fresh air and sunshine instead of sitting in front of this blasted computer writing what you're currently reading. But you're here and I'm here, so let's enjoy ourselves, shall we?
The thing is, I'm afraid this is going to end up being another "I've got nothing" posts. I don't really have any particular topic I felt like discussing at the moment. Not that there's anything wrong with posting for the sake of posting, but I like my work to have a little more substance. I like to think I can do a little better than some of those short, quite unmemorable posts I wrote for the first few years of the Experience's existence. Know what I mean? Of course you do.
But yeah, I've got nothing. At least I managed to kill a little time on this lazy Monday. And there's no harm in that, is there? I think not.
Welcome to the month of April, everybody. Glad to see you could make it.
So not a whole lot happened over the course of this past weekend. I read a wee bit of Cell, which I really need to jump deeper into since I just came across a very intriguing plot twist. I last left off on page 205, just a little over halfway through, and I can't wait to see what the next 145 pages have to offer.
I've also done some pre-planning on the script idea I mentioned in my last post. I'm in the process of writing down all my favorite memories from my college days, or at least the ones that I think would make good scenes in a movie (I'm somewhere in the neighborhood of twenty, I think, so far), and I'm preparing to start working on a list of character names. Like I said, I don't plan on using any real names just in case somebody gets a bee in their bonnet and sues me. But I did know some people with some pretty interesting nicknames that I might have to take inspiration from when I start writing. Like I'm not gonna name a character "Disco" or "The Rage."
Once I get all that taken care of, I can start working on the story. I still don't know what kind of story I want to tell, though I am leaning toward doing something in the vein of the "prospective student learning the ropes" thing from PCU. I don't consider myself to be a very good storyteller, so I'll definitely have to work on how I'm going to write this thing. I can think up all the concepts in the world, but coming up with a beginning, middle, and end is the important part. That's going to be the really big phase of my pre-planning, naturally.
Anyway, that's where things stand with the writing. I do appreciate the support from all three of my readers so far, and you guys can feel free to pitch in with any suggestions or comments or anything like that. Be my guest. I'm just happy this script thing seems like it's really starting to move forward. Seems like that's becoming a theme.
Friday, March 30, 2007; 3:51 p.m.
I've been doing some more thinking lately about my whole "writing a script" thing. I was having trouble coming up with a solid plot, but I did manage to think up another decent concept. You know the old writers' axiom, "write what you know"? That hit me yesterday, and it was then I thought up the idea to write a movie inspired by the three semesters I spent in college.
Of course, I'd probably have to give the college a fake name and I'd probably have to give everyone different names just so nobody would get upset and sue me, but if I made it, I'd hope to actually film it at the school itself. But what I'm worried about is that the college might not be exactly as I remembered it. Newer buildings have been added; older buildings have been torn down. But I think that this is something that could write itself if I could think up the proper narrative. Do I do it like Van Wilder? Do I do it like Fast Times at Ridgemont High, with a story for every character? Or how about something like PCU? I know right away I can rule out doing something like Animal House or Revenge of the Nerds or anything with fraternities or sororities, since my old college doesn't allow them. (Though anyone who knew me and my crew back then could argue that the whole second floor of my dormitory was one big unofficial frat house, considering the way we all acted.) But I'm sure that if I really put myself to it, I'm sure I could knock something out.
What really grinds my gears about the whole thing is that I have a good idea for a funny scene, but I'm not sure if I'd be able to do it. See, me and my buddies once sat around the lobster tank at Wal-Mart late one night, watching this one punkass lobster pick fights with all the other lobsters. We sat there for a good fifteen, twenty minutes laughing our heads off, trying to convince the other lobsters to stop taking that one's crap. That could have been a great scene in a movie if it was pulled off right, but since I don't think Wal-Mart has lobster tanks anymore, there goes that. It also bums me out that the neighborhood's best hangouts when I was there, the local bakery and the apartment above it, were torn down a year or two ago. I'd have totally included the building in the movie, but just my luck, it's a vacant lot as far as I know.
I have to admit that the idea of writing a movie around my old stomping grounds is promising. If I did write it and eventually filmed it, I'd probably have to do it during the summer months to avoid interfering with the academic process. (That is, assuming I got permission to do it from the school in the first place.) I could even pull some strings with some old acquaintances and try drafting the campus TV and radio station's crew into service as a movie crew. But I don't want to get too far ahead of myself. I think something like this could work. I don't know for sure if it would, but it could. As always, we'll see how this goes from here.
Thursday, March 29, 2007; 2:00 a.m.
If you've been following the Experience for the last few days, you've seen my progress in Operation: Six Star, a quest to achieve 100,000 points in each level of Resident Evil 4's Mercenaries side-game. And folks, I can officially say that Operation: Six Star was a smashing success.
The only level I had left was the desert war zone, so I went into it alternating between my two go-to guys, Albert Wesker and Jack Krauser. I went at it for an hour, and just five minutes ago, I finally got over the six-figure hump with Krauser. Eighty-five freaks killed with a streak of 27 in a row, giving me a grand total of 105,020. Like when I beat Waterworld the other day, it came down to the last twenty seconds, inching just over the edge and hanging on for dear life. But I succeeded, and that's awesome.
So my current high scores in The Mercenaries, highest to least highest (since "lowest high score" just sounds silly):
See? I told you Wesker and Krauser are my go-to guys. Good job, boys.
And as I said yesterday, I'm almost afraid to pick up Professional Mode again. I'm so close to the end, but with the small arsenal I'm carrying, I'm pretty sure I won't get past Über-Krauser. And even if I did, who's to say I could make it through the remaining areas and the boss battle against Saddler? Sigh, sometimes I just don't know what I get myself into until I get right down in the middle of it.
But isn't that always how it is?
Wednesday, March 28, 2007; 1:09 a.m.
Made a little more progress on Operation: Six Star earlier. No, I didn't get that fourth six-figure score, but I got very close. Frustratingly close. So close I can taste it. I actually beat my high score in the desert level three times, scoring 93,230 and 94,740 with Krauser before topping out at 98,940 with Wesker. I took a few shots at getting higher scores, but alas, no such luck. So I figured that 98,940 was a pretty good score to call it a night with.
I'm teetering right on the edge of that fourth six star rating, and I'm sure I'll rack up 100,000 soon. You better believe I will. But I'm still wondering... what horrors await me if I try to pick up Resident Evil 4's Professional Mode again?
Tuesday, March 27, 2007; 12:49 a.m.
As noted at this time last week, I've been trying to get a score of 100,000 or higher in the Mercenaries mini-game of Resident Evil 4. "Operation: Six Star," it's been dubbed, and that's a catchy name. Anyway, I made a little progress just a little while ago, and I felt like bragging about it. :)
If you remember those posts I made about Operation: Six Star, you'll recall that I've succeeded in achieving six-digit scores in two levels and have had brushes with success with the other two. Well, I did manage to get a six-digit score in Waterworld about half an hour ago. With Wesker, I racked up 108 kills with a string of 24 in a row, for a final score of 105,790. I barely made it over the hump, and when I noticed, I had about 18 seconds until time expired. And those 18 seconds were tense! I had enough health and healing aids, but tense times like that cause poor little gamers like me to get nervous. But I lasted the 18 seconds, and ended it with the aforementioned 105,790 points.
So after getting that score, I spent half an hour trying to top 100,000 in the desert, but alas, no success there. Maybe tomorrow or some other time. But Operation: Six Star is one step closer to completion, and I'm pretty enthused about that. I'm gonna crack that last six-figure score eventually and Operation: Six Star is going to be a success, believe me.
Monday, March 26, 2007; 7:21 p.m.
I've finally finished with that triple-feature of reviews that I've been working on for forever. So for your reading enjoyment, here's my reviews of three big horror movies from this past October: The Texas Chainsaw Massacre: The Beginning, The Grudge 2, and Saw III. So have fun reading those, and feel free to go back and read the reviews for the other movies in each of those particular franchises.
I'm so glad I've got it done, so I can move on and put more concentration into other work. I've got a few movies lined up to review sooner or later, particularly Pulse, X-Men 3, and Hollywoodland. I already have an idea of what kind of reviews I'm going to give each of those movies, so it shouldn't be too hard to write them.
But anyway, take a look at the three new reviews, and I hope you have as much fun reading them as I had writing them.
Saturday, March 24, 2007; 5:06 p.m.
Like I said yesterday, I managed to get out this afternoon and see the new Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles movie, and I absolutely loved it. Sitting there in the darkened theater, watching the four reptilian ninjas, I felt like I was seven years old again. It was as if the movie was made specifically for the inner child in me that has refused to grow up or let go of the things I loved when I was younger. So yeah, I enjoyed every second of the movie.
The voice acting is great, and the animation is well done. It's not as good as what Pixar could do, but then again, what is? And although the movie leaves a few dangling plot threads, like how they don't really explain who Karai is or how she reassembled the Foot Clan, but I guess they can tie all these loose ends up in a sequel. And I'd totally go see a sequel. It's too bad they can't churn some of these movies out on an annual basis like the Saw movies.
But yeah, I think it's obvious I loved the movie. I'd gladly pay good money to see it again if I got the opportunity. The final verdict of me and my inner child is that TMNT gets a solid four stars out of five, and it'll be a definite purchase as soon as it comes out on DVD.
Friday, March 23, 2007; 10:14 p.m.
Me and my dad went and saw the 7:00 showing of The Hills Have Eyes 2 last night, and maybe we should have seen 300 instead. I thought it was lame, lame, a million times lame.
I liked the remake a lot. I wouldn't have given it a good review if I didn't. But this sequel isn't even half as good as its predecessor. None of the actors hold my interest; the script is so awful, I wasn't even sure what the names of the characters were; and the direction is horrendous. I don't know who the director is, but I hope he never gets any work again. He apparently can't grasp the simple concept of just sitting the camera and one spot and letting the action happen. Every time there was an action sequence, the camera was shaking around all over the place like it was being operated by someone with Parkinson's disease in the middle of an earthquake. If I wanted to see the camera shaking around, I'd watch The Blair Witch Project instead. I'm going to give Hills Have Eyes 2 two stars and hope that I appreciate it more once I rent the DVD and review it for S@TM. I say that because I'm hoping that the bad mood I was in while watching the movie. You may be asking, "Why were you in a bad mood?" Here's why.
I was sitting by a group of about seven teenage girls that just wouldn't shut up. Talking to each other, giggling, answering cell phone calls, even mocking one character because he had a lisp. I'll admit that I've talked in theaters before, but I have enough respect for everybody else to keep it to a whisper when I do. I'd also have the common damn courtesy to turn off my cell phone if I had one. But no, they didn't give a crap. I'd be surprised if any of these girls were old enough to get in, which is surprising because I got carded when I bought the tickets and you'd be stupid to think I look underage. Next time I go see a movie on a Friday night, I'm gonna swing by Thor's house and see if I can borrow Mjolnir, because those punkass hooligans are going to be catching beatdowns right and left!
But after that crappy movie, things are going to be looking up during the rest of the weekend. I bought Mick Foley's new book at Wal-Mart after seeing Hills Have Eyes 2, and I've go plans to see the new Ninja Turtles movie sometime tomorrow afternoon. And I'm so looking forward to both. I still need to finish Cell too, since it's due back to the library on Wednesday and I'm only halfway through. I might have to check it out again, since I want to see this book all the way through to the end. But I've got TMNT tomorrow, two books to read, and a review to write, so this weekend shouldn't be boring.
Friday, March 23, 2007; 4:52 p.m.
I mentioned a while back that I was still aiming to finish those three reviews I started back in January. And I can finally say there's been some progress on that third one. I got the DVD from Netflix yesterday, and I should have it done within the next few weeks. I've had the other two finished for at least a month now, so I'll be happy when I can finally get them posted and out there for the world to see.
But in the meantime, I do have a new review for everybody to check out. Since the new CGI-animated Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles movie came out today, I figured I'd do my part to promote it in some way. So submitted for your approval, here's my review for the very first live-action Ninja Turtles movie. Can you believe that the seventeenth anniversary of this movie's release is a week from today? And don't you worry, I should have reviews of the second and third Ninja Turtles movies done sometime in the future. Maybe when the new one comes out on DVD?
And since The Hills Have Eyes 2 hits theaters today too, you can also check out my reviews for last year's Hills Have Eyes movie and Wes Craven's 1977 original. Have fun reading.
Wednesday, March 21, 2007; 6:29 p.m.
There's a story on the front cover of this week's issue of the local newspaper about how there are sixteen towns vying for the chance to host the world premiere of The Simpsons Movie, all of them named Springfield. And one of the Springfields in the running is only twelve miles from Casa de Sutton.
Nothing is official, nor are there any guarantees that Kentucky's Springfield will even be selected, but I can't say that I'm not a little excited. I'm a fan of The Simpsons and I've been anticipating the movie since it was first announced, but the idea that the movie's big premiere could be right in my backyard has got me looking forward to it even more. The catch is, Washington County doesn't have a movie theater. So apparently, the leading candidate to host this big soiree is a little place called the Opera House. I've never been in the Opera House before, but I hear it's kinda little. If they want a big turnout from the community, I think it'd be a good idea for them to put a big screen and speaker system up on the high school's football field, and stick the projector in the field's press box. I'm sure there'd be a huge crowd for it, if that's what they want from it. But they haven't even announced where it'll be yet, so maybe I'm thinking too far ahead.
Even if we don't get the premiere, I'm still happy that Washington County was at least considered for the opportunity. I mean, how often does a little town in the middle of nowhere get the chance to experience a bit of Hollywood?
Wednesday, March 21, 2007; 1:54 a.m.
I was doing some channel surfing the other day, and ended up discovering that we get the Sundance Channel here at Casa de Sutton. I was kinda surprised to find that out, since we're subscribed to the Starz channel package, not the Showtime package. But we've got the Sundance Channel anyway, and I have to admit that I've never really had the desire to watch it before. They rarely air any programming that I'd be interested in watching, and when they did, I couldn't watch because we didn't get the channel. And I was happy with IFC, since they occasionally show something that I'd like to see. Stuff like Monster, O Brother, Where Art Thou?, Ed Wood, May, Greg the Bunny, things like that. But after idly flipping through the channels two hours ago, I ended up on the Sundance Channel watching a movie that I hadn't seen in quite a while: Takashi Miike's Audition. The movie just ended, and it's got me in a posting mood.
I haven't seen Audition since right around Christmas in 2005, but it's just as crazy as I remember it being. Everything about it is just... I don't exactly know what word I'm looking for, but it's a very surprising movie. What gets me is that it starts out almost like a romantic during the first act, gets a little off-putting during the second act, then it goes and punches a one-way ticket to Crazytown during the third act. It's definitely a movie that will catch people off guard if they're watching it for the first time and don't know what to expect. And it still managed to work me around, and this is the second time I've seen it.
I probably can't say anything without repeating what I said in the post I wrote way back when. Audition is an amazing, amazing movie, and I can't say enough good things about it. I'm just amazed that I don't own the DVD yet. It'd make a great addition to my foreign horror DVD collection, but I haven't bought it yet. That's going on my "To Do" list.
Tuesday, March 20, 2007; 12:55 a.m.
So in the further adventures of Sutton's Quest For 100,000, I actually made a bit of headway. After maybe a dozen attempts, I got ever so close to that elusive number with a score of 92,770 in the desert with Krauser. I couldn't top it after several more attempts, so I decided to move on to the Waterworld. This one was far trickier, as after numerous attempts with both Wesker and Krauser, I couldn't get any higher than 85,000.
So as it stands right now, my high scores are the 92,770 points I scored in the desert, and my previous high scores of 111,760 in the village, 130,270 in the castle, and 97,730 in Waterworld. I figure if I can get 90,000+, then with the proper strategy, I can crack that 100,000-point barrier. Maybe even get 110,000 just to even up with the other two. Getting four Six Star Ratings, as they have been named, is going to be pretty darn awesome.
Awesome, I say!
Sunday, March 18, 2007; 11:58 p.m.
After taking a cue from the Joyride, I decided to pick up Resident Evil 4 and take another shot at The Mercenaries. I've surpassed 100,000 points in the village and the castle, and I have a high score of 91,000+ in Waterworld, so I figured I'd give try to hit the 100,000 mark in Waterworld and the desert war zone. Might as well go four for four, right?
Well, after two hours of trying, I peaked at 50,000 in the desert and 70,000 in Waterworld. I might have had some dramatic stories to tell about my adventures had they gone better, but yeah, things didn't go my way. So my current high scores in those levels can breathe a sigh of relief for now, knowing that their position hasn't been usurped yet. But I figure I'll have to break those scores eventually. Then I can jump back in on beating Krauser in the knife fight on the Professional setting. I still haven't gotten by him yet.
But I will. Eventually.
Thursday, March 15, 2007; 7:32 p.m.
If you read Monday's post, you'll remember that I had a whole lot of writing lined up when it came to "Sutton At The Movies." And lately, I've also been thinking about another kind of writing. You guessed it, I'm talking about my attempt at writing a feature film.
While I've come up with a few scenes (two of which borrow from Dane Cook's "nothing fights" and Monopoly bits) and I have a huge .txt file of dialogue I'd like to incorporate, I'm struggling when it comes to thinking up ways to connect these scenes or even think up a real plot without shamelessly ripping off another movie. I know I've said I wanted to do a movie similar to a few other movies that I like, but when it comes right down to it, sometimes substance has to outweigh style.
Keeping my struggles in mind, I often wonder if I'd be better off letting someone else write the thing while I focused on directing. Of course, I'd want to make a few contributions to the writing process, but sometimes a person just has to admit what their strengths and weaknesses are.
I've even thought about downloading an unproduced script off SimplyScripts.com and turning that into a movie. But the ones I've read don't really appeal to me as a movie lover, and I just can't see myself making something that doesn't have my own little personal touches on it. Besides, if I do make a movie written by somebody else, I'd rather it be written by someone I know whose talents I appreciate, not some random, faceless person whose half-assed script I downloaded off the Internet. I'm picky about this sort of thing.
But I figure that if I ever actually do get serious about this whole "making a movie" thing, I'll have to weigh all of my options first. This sort of thing isn't something I can just do halfway and just stop once I get bored or the going gets too tough. But I think this going to take a whole heck of a lot of work if I'm going to go through with it. As stated, options are going to have to be weighed. We'll just have to see how it goes, if it goes anywhere. I've got to use my potential for something, don't I?
Thursday, March 15, 2007; 6:59 p.m.
So March Madness is underway, but I can't say I'm really looking forward to it. Judging by the brackets, Kentucky is going to get destroyed by Kansas in the second round if they even beat Villanova at all. Kentucky's 21-11 record so far this season is just disappointing, and I'll be pleasently surprised if they even make it past the second round. Yeah, I could always cheer for Louisville or even another SEC team, but it just isn't the same.
Wednesday, March 14, 2007; 3:07 p.m.
Well, I was going to write a post about how much I was enjoying the change in weather. After months of that awful, nasty, so-called "winter" weather that wasn't very winter-like at all, we're finally getting some weather that resembled spring. Then I wake up this morning and it's raining. I know that rain is a natural part of this kind of weather, but it's still a buzzkiller. And it's one of those weird rains where it's half-cloudy, half-sunny. That kind of rain is too bizarre.
And the thing is, the county got a thunderstorm warning, but it only rained for maybe five minutes, if that. That's a heck of a thunderstorm. Whatever. But you know, I can forgive mild rainshowers, because it still feels wondrful outside. I could definitely get used to the kind of weather we've been having lately. Minus rain, naturally.
Tuesday, March 13, 2007; 11:56 p.m.
I've been doing a lot of thinking lately in regards to that New Year's resolution I made back in January. I resolved to move forward, by which I mean that I plan on using 2007 to make up for all the years I spent sitting around all that pesky responsibility crap that seems to be all the rage with the kids nowadays.
As much as I want to get out there and improve my mediocre, slacker-ific existence, I'm not exactly sure where I want to start. I have an idea or two, but the correct path hasn't made itself completely clear yet. I think it would be best if I just sat down and mapped out exactly what I'd like to accomplish in order to achive what I'm looking for. I mean, I don't want to be some unemployed slacker bumming rides off my parents for the rest of my life because I refused to grow up.
We're only three months into 2007, and I'm hoping that by the time 2008 rolls around, my path to glory will become more evident. I said in January that this was going to be my year, that I would move forward and out of the quagmire that I've let myself sink into. And I'm going to make that happen, believe me.
Monday, March 12, 2007; 11:43 p.m.
Remember a while back when I said I was working on three new reviews? I still haven't gotten the chance to really work on the third one yet, thanks to a little confusion with Netflix. But I've gotten everything worked out (I think), and I'm going to get to that review sooner or later. I've got one movie in front of it on my Netflix queue, so barring any insane screw-ups, I'll be getting that review started soon. Maybe next week.
In the meantime, I've been thinking of other reviews I could write. And I have my eyes on a few movies. The new Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles movie comes out in a little less than two weeks, so I've thrown around the idea of reviewing the live-action Ninja Turtles trilogy and posting them on the 23rd. I'm not usually the speediest writer there is, so I don't believe I'd get all three done in time. But I'm going to make an attempt at getting the first one done and posted, then just do the remaining ones some other time.
And it really seems like the list of movies I want to review keeps getting longer and longer. There's quite a few in my DVD collection that I'd like to write about, and there's a mighty crapload of movies in my Netflix queue that I'm looking at. I just can't help stacking my inbox higher and higher, when I really need to start filling up my outbox. A writer's job is never done, it seems.
Saturday, March 10, 2007; 11:37 p.m.
Wow, I haven't posted since Tuesday. I was on a roll there for a while, and then no posts for several days. What happened? I'm such a slacker. To be totally honest, I almost made a post the other day about Captain America, and now I don't know why I didn't. But since everybody else in the blogosphere is posting about Cap's death, I might as well throw in my two cents as well. Why not?
Since I'm not a very devout comic book reader, I don't really know exactly how to feel about the whole situation. But am I the only one that gets the impression that the whole thing is rather senseless? Why would Marvel want to kill off one of its greatest heroes? To sell a few comics based on shock value alone? To get a little attention after the Civil War's lame resolution? I really don't know for sure.
Color me skeptical, but I think Cap will be resurrected eventually. Yeah, it was a pretty decisive death, but look at what happened to Jason Todd. I'm sure somebody will get the idea to resurrect the Captain America gimmick with someone else wearing the costume, but it just isn't the same unless it's Steve Rogers. It's like when somebody wore the Batman outfit while Bruce Wayne was laid up with a broken back. Bruce Wayne is the only Batman I'll accept, and Steve Rogers is the only Captain America I'll accept. If they do keep the Captain America gimmick going, then they should find a way to keep Steve Rogers in the role. Whether it be reviving him through supernatural means, or getting some kind of vital signs and sticking him in a red, white, and blue Iron Man suit to keep him alive, or something, I'm sure some writer will figure out how to do it. Besides, I'm sure interest in Cap's comics would go up around the time his movie comes out, and I don't believe it'd be in Marvel's best interests to keep such a big-name character dead while his movie (hopefully) does big business at the box office. So for that reason alone, I'm sure Cap will be back by the end of the decade.
But that's just one guy's opinion.
Sunday, March 4, 2007; 9:56 p.m.
Ever see a movie that was utterly confusing yet simultaneously made perfect sense? I've seen such a movie. My dad and I caught the 7:30 showing of The Number 23 in Bardstown tonight, and I thought it was great. But it's so loaded with numerology, both obvious and subtle, that I almost got lost trying to catch it all. Though perhaps that's my fault for paying 100% attention to the plot.
The movie is greatly influenced by the 23 Enigma, which, if I understand it correctly, is the Discordian belief that just about everything can be connected in some shape, form, or fashion to the number 23. I was pretty much a stranger to the 23 Enigma prior to seeing the movie, so I got a real crash course in it. As I said, the movie is absolutely teeming with references to the number. Whether it be the numbers two and three appearing close to one another, a clock showing that it's 11:12 p.m. (11+12=23; 11:00 p.m. is 2300 hours in military time), street signs, bus numbers, or any other way-too-coincidental appearance, the number is everywhere. Everywhere! Joel Schumacher must have been working double-time to get what he did in there.
And like I said, I got so wrapped up in seeing where I could catch all of the number's appearances, I almost totally lost track of where the movie was going. See, I think that's where the home video format really comes in handy. People will watch it once for the movie itself, then watch it again to catch all the little references to 23. And a great special feature for the DVD: the movie edited down to where it's just every 23rd minute of the movie. Granted, that might only be three or four minutes long, but it'd be neat. I also think releasing a version of the book from the movie would have made for a great marketing gimmick. I'd totally buy that book.
You know, Jim Carrey isn't exactly the first name that pops into my mind when I think of people to star in a movie like this. I mean, the sheer number of goofy comedies on his résumé far outweigh the number of serious movies he's done. But you know what? He's actually pretty good here. And if you ask me, he completely blows away the rest of the cast. If he does any more movies like this, people are gonna thing he's more crazy than goofy. I thought he was great, and I hope he does do more movies like this. Maybe a sequel titled The Number 46?
The Number 23 wasn't the best movie ever, but I did like it a lot. I'll give it three and a half stars, with the possibility that I'll bump it up to four once I get the opportunity to see it again. And I have to tell this story before I wrap up this post. After seeing the movie, I started thinking about the number 23, and I noticed a few odd things. We have to take the Bluegrass Parkway to get to Bardstown, and to get to and from the Parkway, we have to take Highway 1796. 1+7+9+6=23. And if I'm not mistaken, Bardstown is 23 miles from my house. I live in the friggin' Twilight Zone.
Sunday, March 4, 2007; 1:29 a.m.
Folks, we here at The Matt Sutton Experience are proud to announce that we've gone worldwide. I just checked Google Analytics, and I discovered that I've gotten hits from Canada, the United Kingdom, Israel, and China. And that's pretty darn awesome. So I want to say hello to my international readers. That is, if you guys are regular readers and aren't just passing through via random Google/Blogger searches. Of course, if you are just passing through, feel free to stick around. Hang out for a while. See how you like the place.
Granted, those hits are for the Blogger version of the MSX. I don't have the Tripod version plugged into Google Analytics, mainly because that one is more or less my backup should something happen to Blogspot. So who knows who's visiting that one. But regardless, it's pretty cool to know that I'm getting visitors from outside my regular American audience (who I'm very proud to have, I might add). Since the MSX is starting to get a tiny international foothold, I wonder if I can gain any kind of notoriety on a global scale if this thing really takes off. I should start drawing up those domination plans now.
Saturday, March 3, 2007; 7:08 p.m.
Today can go straight to hell. That's really all there is to it.
Nothing is going right. I knocked the laundry room door off its hinges because I'm a major klutz; my family's annoying, worthless dog covered me in mud, and I'm in a generally unhappy mood. And when I get unhappy, I have a tendency to take it out on both myself and others in ways I may regret later. Needless to say, I'm not a very nice person to be around right now.
Ugh, maybe tomorrow will be better. I can't handle too many days like today.
I've been thinking about a lot of the popular trends lately, and the more I think about them, the more I feel like a man without a country. Having been born the year I was, I'm too young to be Generation X, and I feel almost too old to be part of Generation Y. I say that because even though I'm a young man, I'm completely out of touch with the current generation. I don't drive a fancy car; I don't send text messages; and I don't own a cell phone, an iPod, or anything fun like that. I think most current Top 40 music is awful, and I don't watch too many of the TV shows that are currently popular with Generation Y. I'm so completely out of the loop, and I feel like I have way too much catching up to do. I'm just now getting around to liking stuff that was popular in the late '90s, which means I'm probably going to get around the current trends in about ten years. Am I totally out of touch?
I'll admit I've never exactly been the trendiest person ever. I wouldn't know a current trend if it came up and smacked me across the face. But am I so unhip that I might as well be Amish? Because that's what it looks like. I'm a little less than three months away from my 25th birthday, and I'm shaking my fist at the ungrateful whippersnappers that make up my generation. I don't know if that's funny or sad, but I'm leaning towards both.
But I'll say this much: you punkass hooligans better stay off my lawn! You and your rock 'n roll eight-track tapes!
I've done it in the past, but I wanted to put over Dave's latest project, a review of the first disc of the Hulk Hogan Ultimate Anthology DVD. He puts me over more than once in it, so it's only nice to return the favor. Plus it's some good reading, and he makes an awesome MST3K joke at the end too. You can't go wrong with MST3K jokes. I'm just afraid that he's a cat's whisker away from selling out to that damnable Internet Wrestling Community.
So go check out that, and I'll probably be back with another post later.
I don't just write movie reviews and watch illegally downloaded videos; I enjoy a good book too. I know, I'm as shocked as you are.
Thanks to the county library's bookmobile program, I'm getting the chance to read Stephen King's Cell, which I've been wanting to do for a while. I'm only 25 pages into it right now, but I'm totally digging it. Plus the concept - cell phone users get turned into zombies - is pretty cool, too. And despite not being too deep into the book, I totally think it'd make a great movie. I'd go see it.
I'm looking forward to getting deeper into Cell, seeing where it goes, how it tirns out. And I'm glad I don't own a cell phone yet.
Like I said in my last post, I got to see this week's episode of Heroes via illegal downloading. Also thanks to illegal downloading, I finally got the chance to see Borat: Cultural Learnings of America For Make Benefit Glorious Nation of Kazakhstan tonight. Geez, that's a mouthful of a title. It's up there with Dr. Strangelove's full title, for crying out loud. But I'm getting off-track. I missed out on the Borat phenomenon back in November when it was all anyone was talking about, but I finally got around to seeing it on my computer just a few minutes ago. And I have to say, I don't know too many movies that are both this funny and this completely wrong at the same time.
It's politically incorrect in the most insane way, and I must admit that I do think at least some of the controversy it caused has a teensy bit of merit. Sasha Baron Cohen's titular character is completely backwards in his way of thinking, thanks to his rather ... *ahem* ... "confused" beliefs regarding women and various cultures. If it were any other movie, if it were any other character, Baron Cohen would be accused of being a racist and the movie would have tanked at the box office. What makes it actually work is that Borat isn't being malicious; he's just stupid. Baron Cohen plays the role with a certain amount of innocence, and that's what makes the whole thing so charming.
This movie sets the bar of politically incorrect humor extremely high. It seems almost wrong to laugh at at times, but some scenes are so awkward and bizarre that laughter is inevitable. (Take the naked fight scene, for example.) But the movie's funny, no doubt about it. Borat: Cultural Learnings of America For Make Benefit Glorious Nation of Kazakhstan gets four stars, and I'm sure I'll have a full review of it once I can get around to watching the DVD via Netflix. Oh yeah, it's a total S@TM induction, for sure.
How awesome was last night's episode of Heroes? If you said "pretty darn awesome," then a winner is you!
I don't get to watch Heroes when it airs on Mondays, since I have an outstanding date with Monday Night Raw every week and I sadly don't own a TiVo. So because of that, I either catch reruns on the Sci-Fi Channel whenever they are, or download them and watch them on my computer. I downloaded last night's episode and just finished watching it, and holy cow, it was great.
It's obvious that Hayden Panettiere is the star of the show, since Claire is the best written character on the show (with Masi Oka's character coming in at a close second). And because of that, it makes sense that there'd be a Claire-centric episode somewhere down the line. That episode was this week, and I'm willing to go out on a limb and say it's probably the best episode of the show thus far. I don't want to give too much away, since I don't want to ruin it for anybody, but the episode was absolutely tremendous.
I'll admit that while I wasn't too sure about the Mr. Bennet character when I first got into the series, but he's really grown on me over time. And because of how much he and Claire have grown on me, the episode really got to me, especially the ending. Oh boy, the ending. It was so sad and so heart-wrenching, I don't know if Heroes can top it. And is it just me, or is Heroes's Nuclear Man a zillion times cooler than Superman 4's Nuclear Man? Because he is.
I really can't wait until Heroes hits DVD. That way, I can sit down, watch every episode back-to-back, and see how everything pieces together. Heroes is an absolutely amazing and enthralling show, no doubt about it. And if you're not watching it anyway you can, then shame on you. Now I'm just waiting for NBC to give Hiro and Ando their own spinoff series. That'd be awesome.
Saturday, February 24, 2007; 11:52 p.m.
I was doing a little reading around this wacky thing we call the Internet, and I noticed a bit of news about how Warner Brothers is considering doing a Justice League movie. A script is being written, but that's no guarantee that it'll ever be anything more than that. But if a Justice League movie is put into production, how would they do it?
If it were up to me, I'd probably want to do seperate movies for each of the core members first, as kind of an introduction to them. They've already done Superman and Batman, and Flash and Wonder Woman movies are being worked on, so that leaves Green Lantern, the Martian Manhunter, and maybe Aquaman and/or Hawkgirl (depending on what "core members" they decided to use). That could get tricky. I could be wrong, but I don't think Hawkgirl and the Manhunter have a whole lot of big-name recognition. And people outright mock Aquaman for being kinda lame, so I don't know what kind of a reaction he'd get. And a Green Lantern movie could be complicated too, since his power ring can do pretty much any random thing he wants it to. It's like he's wearing a great big deus ex machina on his finger. So unless he fought Sinestro or somebody else with a power ring, people might just figure there'd be no drama in it and ignore a Green Lantern movie.
If they hadn't already done the Justice League TV series, I think Warner Brothers and DC could easily do something similar to Marvel's straight-to-DVD Avengers and Iron Man cartoons. They could make a mighty crapload of money doing that. But if they've got their hearts set on doing a live-action Justice League movie, I hope they can find a way to make it without it feeling crowded like the X-Men movies. I mean, the X-Men trilogy is like friggin' War & Peace with all the characters running around.
But I'm not going to worry about a Justice League movie right now. I'm too busy looking forward to The Dark Knight. That's going to be too awesome.
Saturday, February 24, 2007; 3:28 a.m.
I've been feeling awfully emo lately, and it sucks. I'm afraid if I get any worse, I'm going to end up dressing like Rivers Cuomo and listening to Death Cab For Cutie. And that'd be terrible.
But anyway, enough of that crap. Let's talk about something good. I just finished watching Carrie on TV, and every time I watch it, the more I fall in love with it. If it didn't spawn that awful sequel and that mediocre made-for-television remake, it'd be even more awesome. I can't really think of anything bad to say about Carrie. Sissy Spacek and Piper Laurie are both absolutely brilliant, and if I were to put a list together, Spacek as the titular telekinetic would be high on my list of my all-time favorite movie performances.
Everything about the movie is spectacular, and it's a crime I haven't bought the DVD and reviewed it for Sutton At The Movies yet. You know, I've got half a mind to do a big Carrie triple feature for S@TM, but I'm really not looking forward to watching Carrie 2 or the remake again. The sequel sucks hard, and the only good thing about the remake is the brilliant casting. Whoever hired Angela Bettis and Katharine Isabelle for the remake should be commended.
You know, if I actually do a Carrie triple feature, I think I might just get a little more ambitious and do Super Saturday 2. Remember Super Saturday? When I posted all those reviews of comic book movies? My idea for Super Saturday 2 is to do a crapload of movies based on Stephen King books. If you count the three Carrie movies, the two Creepshow movies, and the movies based on his "Richard Bachman" books, there's maybe a dozen movies or more I could do. Maybe I could even hold off until the movie version of Cell comes out and hits DVD so I could review it too.
If that goes through, I've even got an idea for Super Saturday 3: movies based on video games. I've done six of them already, but there's a number that are begging to be reviewed. I mean, I could have a lot of fun reviewing Super Mario Brothers, Street Fighter, or the Mortal Kombat movies. But in looking at the list on Wikipedia, there's a few that I don't even want to watch, let alone review. I'm not really interested in watching Double Dragon, Final Fantasy: The Spirits Within, or Wing Commander, and if any of you suggest I review a Pokémon movie, I'm gonna punch you in the throat. A man has to have his limits, and Pokémon is mine.
We'll just have to see how this goes. I don't want to put too many reviews on my plate, or else I'm going to get sick of writing these things. And we don't want that, do we? Of course not.
Friday, February 23, 2007; 4:36 p.m.
From the Joyride: "With Gemini: Dare to express three of your different sub-personalities." Hey, I'm a Gemini! So what's this stuff about sub-personalities?
Moving along, I was reading my review of The Blair Witch Project last night, and it hit me: a lot of my older reviews are kinda weak. I'll excuse my Blair Witch review, since aside from a few minor alterations, it was taken verbatim from a review I wrote for my high school newspaper way back when. But with the exception of my Friday the 13th review, which I still think is one of my best, my older work could be a lot better.
I think the biggest reason why that is could be how I've developed as a writer over the last few years. Most of my early reviews are pretty short, and not as in-depth (or as well-written) as my most recent ones are. I'm not saying my early reviews aren't any good, but I could probably stand to rewrite a few of them. Or at the very least, give them a few touch-ups. Something to make them as good as the new stuff, y'know?
It just goes to show what a few years worth of practice can do. I'm just happy I finally found a voice for Sutton At The Movies, because I don't think I could have maintained all three of my regular readers with those super-short, half-assed reviews I used to write.
Wednesday, February 21, 2007; 7:02 p.m.
I feel like I've got one more post in me today, but I'm not sure if I have enough material. I really hate that, doing those "I've got nothing" posts. But I figure I can whip up something. How about... the weather?
Yeah, how about the weather? The weather's has actually been pretty nice lately, believe it or not. It rained a bit last night, but other than that, it's been pretty comfortable outside. It certainly beats it being 15 degrees outside. That sort of thing makes me want to rethink how much I like cold weather. I used to say I liked cold weather, but I think I should amend that to "I like cool weather." Cold weather and I don't get along too well anymore.
And that's all I've got.
Wednesday, February 21, 2007; 1:19 p.m.
Okay, I'll go ahead and make that ECW post I was talking about earlier. Like I said, I bought the new "Extreme Rules" DVD on Sunday, and I'm satisfied with it. I already have five of the eight matches on the first disc on other DVDs, and I wasn't really all that desperate to own a Mike Knox match, but other than that, I don't really have any problems with the DVD.
There's a few omissions in my ECW DVD collection, so I'm glad they included matches from Guilty As Charged '01 and the two One Night Stand shows on there. And though the new ECW gets a lot of crap, it contributes a few really good matches to the DVD. Though if it were up to me, I'd have taken out the RVD/Sabu-Test/Knox match and replaced it with the much better Dreamer/Sandman-Knox/Test match from back in August at the Hammerstein Ballroom. Or maybe they could have held off on finalizing the DVD specs for a few months so the Extreme Elimination Chamber match could have been included. But I don't work for WWE's home video department, so what do I know?
To be totally honest, I almost bought the History of the WWE Championship set instead. But it came down to a coin flip, and with the ECW DVD I went. And as much as I'd like to get that WWE Title DVD, I think it'll have to wait for a bit. I'm saving my pennies to buy Mick Foley's new book when it comes out in two weeks. I'm totally gonna have that on my bookshelf.
Wednesday, February 21, 2007; 2:57 a.m.
I finally finished the second of those three upcoming reviews just a little while ago, and I'm going to get started on the third once I get it from Netflix. I've got three movies in front of it on my Netflix queue right now, so it might be a little bit before I get to work on it. But I'll have it done eventually, I promise!
In other news, I was thinking about writing a post this past Monday about ECW, since I bought the new "Extreme Rules" DVD after seeing Ghost Rider Sunday afternoon. But just as I got ready to start writing that post, I read that former ECW champ Mike Awesome apparently hung himself. And that's a real bummer. His matches with Masato Tanaka in ECW are some of my favorite matches ever, and I'm sad that he didn't really take off in WWE or WCW when he was there, because he really was awesome. He most certainly lived up to his name in ECW, that's for sure.
I think I'm gonna go grow a mullet and throw a Japanese guy through a bunch of tables. It'd be a fitting tribute.
Sunday, February 18, 2007; 4:45 p.m.
So me, my dad, and my sister caught Ghost Rider this afternoon. And believe it or not, it didn't suck. My opinion won't be shared by everyone, and I'll admit to maybe being a teensy bit biased since I like Nicholas Cage, but I won't lie when I say that I really liked Ghost Rider. Yeah, it might have somewhat unbelievable effects, corny jokes, and an air of silliness to it, but I walked out of the theater thinking to myself, "Oh man, how cool was that!" It's like I was ten years old again.
I don't believe any comic book fan will disagree with me when I say Ghost Rider is a solidly B-list superhero. If he wasn't, the movie would have been a summer blockbuster like the Spider-Man or Fantastic Four sequels coming out in a few months instead of being saddled with a release date in the middle of February. But let's not let that get in the way of the fact that I had fun watchig the Ghost Rider movie, pure and simple. And having fun goes a long way in my opinion of movies. The cast looks like they're having a great time, especially Nicholas Cage, and while the CGI effects arent exactly the most believable, it doesn't hinder the action scenes from being entertaining.
If I had to compare it to any other superhero movies, I'd say that Ghost Rider is probably on the same level as The Punisher. Not everybody will like it, but those that do will have a ball. So I'm going to give it three and a half stars on the actual filmmaking scale, and four stars on the fun scale. Take that for what you will.
Saturday, February 17, 2007; 7:54 p.m.
After it came highly recommended by Libby, I finally got the chance to see "Sick Girl," an episode of Masters of Horror, just a little while ago thanks to Netflix. And I have to agree with Libby: "Sick Girl" is tremendous.
I don't know if I'd call it 100% horror, since it's very, very kooky, but I really liked "Sick Girl" a lot. I'm a fan of both Angela Bettis and Erin Brown (the actress formerly known as Misty Mundae), despite seeing a combined total of three movies starring either of them, but both of them are totally adorable. Even when Brown is spazzing out, yelling profanities, and punching herself in the head and Bettis is freaking out, they're just too darn likable. Somebody needs to put them in more movies right away. Immediately. Right now. I'm not kidding. Better yet, Showtime should give them a regular series to air after Masters of Horror. I'd subscribe to Showtime just to watch it.
I thought "Sick Girl" was entertaining, silly, and downright fun, and I'm giving it a thumbs up. Now I wonder what some more of these Masters of Horror episodes are like. I might have to check them out.
Saturday, February 17, 2007; 3:38 p.m.
So after this past Thursday's little rant against the lack of snow, what happens? We're actually getting some snow today. I guess Mother Nature didn't want me complaining about how she does work anymore. It's been snowing for a few hours now; not blizzard-quality snow, but maybe an inch or two so far. But still, I like having the snow.
My only complaint is that it didn't snow like this on Christmas. It just doesn't feel like Christmas unless there's plenty of snow, and we didn't get any until recently. I'm glad we even any snow at all, but come on. Maybe Mother Nature can make up for it next December. But I'm gonna go play in the snow while it's there now.
Thursday, February 15, 2007; 8:42 p.m.
I haven't done a wrestling post in a while, so I figure now is as good a time as any. So if you haven't heard, WWE has announced that the first member of the WWE Hall of Fame's class of 2007 is "The American Dream" Dusty Rhodes. I'll admit that I haven't seen too many of Dusty's matches, but what I've seen of him has been really entertaining, and I think he's a great choice.
But it does make me wonder who else will be inducted into the Hall of Fame this year. Bob Uecker and Mr. T would be excellent inductions into the "celebrity wing," but I'd have to put some thought into actual wrestlers that I personally would like to see inducted. There's already a lot of big names in the Hall of Fame, but I've noticed a few sticking out that have yet to be added. Take Bruno Sammartino, for example. His two WWWF World Title reigns total just over eleven years, and I'm sure he'd have been in the Hall of Fame already if he'd accept an induction. And I think that Randy Savage and Ricky Steamboat are definitely big names worthy of induction too, and adding them to the Hall of Fame's roster this year would be neat, especially since this year's WrestleMania marks the twentieth anniversary of their huge match at WrestleMania 3.
But who else belongs in the Hall of Fame? A lot of big-name talent from the old WWF are already in there, and I think it might be too early to induct guys like Steve Austin, The Rock, or The Undertaker. So why not induct someone whose greatest fame came from other promotions? If they can induct Dusty Rhodes, Harley Race, and Verne Gagne, certainly they can induct someone that isn't primarily known as a "WWF Guy." Ric Flair and the Road Warriors are definitely deserving of the honor, and guys like Gordon Solie, Arn Anderson, the Freebirds, and the Von Erich family have earned that recognition too. And since he's had a lot of impact on the business, Stu Hart could be worthy of induction as well.
Or they could include some lesser-name candidates as well. People like Bob Backlund, Mr. Perfect, Ted DiBiase, Jake Roberts, and the British Bulldogs are definitely worth nominating, and if it were up to me, I'd even add guys like Jim Neidhart, Jim Duggan, Rick Rude, Big Boss Man, and the Honky Tonk Man. And just to be humorous, I'd induct the Brooklyn Brawler too. I think he's earned it.
WWE's only announced Dusty Rhodes so far, and I'm sure there'll be several more names announced between now and WrestleMania. But it doesn't hurt to speculate, does it?
Thursday, February 15, 2007; 6:32 p.m.
I used to like winter. I really did. But lately, I've found that I should really rethink my position on that. I keep hearing about everybody getting several feet of snow, but I've only seen two inches of it. It melted in no time, and even when it was around, you could still see some patches of grass popping up through it. But in lieu of snow, we've been getting plenty of ice and rain. Oh, am I sick of ice and rain. I'd give anything for a foot or two of snow right about now, but no, I don't get any. What's your friggin' problem, Mother Nature?
It doesn't help things any that the temperature doesn't get any higher than 30 degrees. If the weather is going to be all screwy, you'd think that it could warm up for a bit too. I'm just begging for spring to hurry up and get here, since I can't handle any more of this icy, freezing bullcrap. So quit jerking me around, Mother Nature. Either bring me some snow or just skip ahead to spring already.
Tuesday, February 13, 2007; 9:02 p.m.
Those three reviews are coming along slowly but surely. I'll get them done eventually, I promise.
On the topic of writing, I have to admit that I haven't put a whole lot of thought into writing that script lately. I don't really know what to blame it on. It could be due to either me being really wrapped up in writing my reviews, or the fact that I don't how how to progress a story any further than the ten pages I wrote several months ago. I don't really know why I can't come up with even a little something to further what little I have. I'll admit to not being the most creative writer there is, but surely I can think up something. Right?
The only problem I have is that it seems like most of my ideas are knock-offs of scenes from other movies. At this point, I think I might as well write a remake of a movie or an adaptation of a book. While I'm not exactly opposed to doing either of those ideas, I'd really rather do something original first. The legalities of a remake or a book adaptation would really hinder what I could do with my movie if I tried shopping it around Hollywood unless I was inspired by something public domain, but I mainly want to do something original to prove to myself that I can.
I've long been kicking around my "Clerks in a Wal-Mart" idea, and I think that I could have a lot of fun with it. I've also had the idea of doing something akin to Broken Lizard's Puddle Cruiser. I believe I might have brought that up in the past, but screw it, I'm talking about it again. Puddle Cruiser isn't the best of the Broken Lizard movies, but I'm fond of it and doing something like it would be both fun and simple. It's just a matter of coming up with something that would be in the same style without being too blatant of a ripoff.
It all comes down to fully fleshing out my idea, and taking these ideas in a direction I would be satisfied with. I don't know how I'm going to accomplish this, but I do know that this a goal I don't want to give up on. Even if I'm old and gray when I'm done, I'll just be happy knowing I gave it a shot. I'll figure it out sooner or later, I'm sure of it. I almost always do.
Saturday, February 10, 2007; 10:43 p.m.
Had a bit of a boy's night out with my dad tonight, and we caught the 6:55 showing of Hannibal Rising in Bardstown. It made for a good Punisher movie, but the catch is that it was a Hannibal Lecter movie. Don't get me wrong, Hannibal Rising isn't totally awful, but it seemed like it would be better suited as an issue of Marvel's "What If...?" comics, where The Punisher is a cannibal in post-WW2 Europe. See, the plot centers around a young Hannibal, played by Gaspard Ulliel, seeking bloody vengeance against the Nazi soldiers that murdered and ate his beloved baby sister during the war. That sounds like an extreme twist on Frank Castle's origin story, if you ask me.
And I'll come right out and say it: the movie is nothing more than a slasher movie starring Hannibal Lecter. They could have named the lead character "Joe Smith," and it would have made absolutely no difference whatsoever. I did like the direction and the music, but the rest of the movie is just kinda there. And while he's no Anthony Hopkins (or even Manhunter's Brian Cox, for that matter), Ulliel isn't all that bad. The rest of the cast is serviceable, but nobody really stands out. I don't want to call the movie mediocre, but upon reflection, I think I'm really starting to lean that way. Pending a second viewing when it hits the DVD format in a few months, I'm going to give Hannibal Rising three stars out of five and a recommendation to see it only if you're a Hannibal Lecter completist.
Though in the movie's defense, I have to say that living up to the Hopkins Hannibal Trilogy would most certainly be a tough job. But at least Hannibal Rising took a shot at it.
Friday, February 9, 2007; 8:24 p.m.
You know what really grinds my gears? Those weird Esurance advertisements. If you haven't seen them, there's these bizarre animated commercials with a pink-haired woman ("Erin Esurance," I'm told her name is) engaging in a series of thrilling adventures, whether it be fighting robots in the Old West, partaking in espionage, winning a stock car race, acting like a superhero, or whatever nonsense the ad agency can think up. And in every one, she's casually discussing Esurance with "the mysterious stranger."
But there's a catch: I had to look up Esurance online to find out just what it is. And despite that, I still have no clue what these commercials are trying to sell me. There's so much going on in the commercials that the message gets lost in the presentation. And there's so much crammed into them that I can't make heads or tails of what's going on, let alone what the product is. It's like the ad agency decided to condense the movie Crank into a series of 30-second commercials for a website selling car insurance.
See, I think Esurance should take a cue from Geico. Those caveman commercials are awesome, but as cool as they are, you still know what they're selling. Esurance's commercials are nothing short of confusing, and it makes me want to pay even less attention to them than I already do. I doubt that's what Esurance wants people to do. At least, I don't think they want people to ignore their commercials.
So in summary, Esurance should either hire a new ad agency or tell their current ad agency to start putting cavemen in the commercials. Because the commercials they're running now just aren't working at all.
Sunday, February 4, 2007; 6:46 p.m.
So anyway, here I am trying to survive all this Super Bowl madness. And in attempting that, I managed to finish up one of those reviews I mentioned a while back. I want to go ahead and share it, but I believe I'm going to hang onto it for a little bit. That's mainly because as I was ruminating on other reviews I could do next, I had the idea to do a review tripleheader centered around a particular theme, a theme that will be revealed in due time.
It may take a few weeks for this triple feature to get posted, depending on how fast both Netflix and I can work. I'll get them posted when I get them posted, that's all I know right now. Have fun waiting, and don't let the anticipation get to you too much.
Sunday, February 4, 2007; 5:49 p.m.
Am I the only person on the face of the planet that doesn't care about the Super Bowl? I mean, really, the only thing I'd care about watching are the commercials and Prince's halftime show.
Can't I just fast-forward to March? I'd much rather watch the Final Four.
Friday, February 2, 2007; 4:04 p.m.
By now, I'm sure you've all heard about that whole stupid thing that happened in Boston the other day. So I figured I'd throw my two cents as well.
If you've been living under a rock since Wednesday and haven't heard the news, there was a bomb scare in Boston. But it turns out that they weren't bombs after all. They weren't even related to bombs. They were just a guerilla marketing campaign organized by Turner Broadcasting. An advertising agency had put together a number of LED placards featuring the Mooninites from Aqua Teen Hunger Force, a show that's part of Cartoon Network's late night "Adult Swim" programming block, and placed them in ten major cities around the country. They'd been around for two or three weeks, but suddenly someone in Boston confuses a homemade Lite-Brite for a bomb and things go crazy.
Look at that picture there on the right. Look at it. Does that look like a bomb to you? Not to me. I really doubt that Osama Bin Ladin would think to tell his henchman to construct explosive devices that look like Lite-Brites featuring obscure American cartoon characters giving people the finger. But get this: it was said that because the LEDs had wires, electronic components, and batteries, it fit the description of an improvised explosive device. Gee, if that's what homemade explosives are made out of, then electronics stores nationwide must be fronts for terrorist organizations. These signs had been up for weeks all across the country, and you didn't hear about Philly or San Francisco or any of these other cities panicking over them. It might be just me, but I think Boston really needs to pull the stick out of its ass and calm down.
Ever since the World Trade Center attacks, it seems like terrorism has become the new Communism. Everyone was afraid of Communism back during Joe McCarthy's red scare, and now everybody's afraid that every little thing is some kind of terrorist development. If you left a broken VCR in a cardboard box on a street corner before 9/11, it would have just been a cardboard box with a broken VCR in it. Nowadays, if somebody stumbled across that box, everybody would freak out and say it's a bomb. Is America that paranoid? Are we that afraid of our shadow?
It appears that the nation has lost its sense of whimsy in this post-9/11 America. And that's terrible.
Wednesday, January 31, 2007; 10:02 p.m.
I haven't really put any thought into any of those script ideas since last night, but I have been putting a bit of work into a couple of new movie reviews. I'm in the middle of one right now, and I have another lined up as soon as I'm finished with that. There's also a few movies in my Netflix top 15 and several from my personal collection that I really need to get around to reviewing. Pirates of the Caribbean 2 and Jackie Brown are screaming at me from their spots on my DVD rack, so I should write about them sooner or later. Truth be told, I don't believe there'll be a shortage of reviews to be written. At least not for a little while.
It's hard to think I've been doing this for three and a half years. It seems like I started this almost an eternity ago. But I must admit that I find a lot of satisfaction in writing them. I don't know if I'll ever make a movie, but I love to talk about them, and this is a good avenue for me to do that. I'm not going to claim I want to be the next Roger Ebert or anything, but everyone has to have their hobbies, right? Hobby or not, I have a lot of fun writing these reviews. I do my absolute best with each one, and I hope that shows.
My readership may not be huge, but I'm glad people do visit my humble little corner of cyberspace. You keep reading, I'll keep writing.
Thursday, January 25, 2007; 10:42 p.m.
I finally made my first trip to the movies this afternoon; me, my dad, and my sister went and caught the 4:45 showing of the remake of The Hitcher in Bardstown this afternoon. We were the only ones in the theater, which made the experience a little more fun. But that aside, I did like The Hitcher a lot.
No, I didn't think it was the best movie ever. Maybe not even fifth best. But I did enjoy it and would recommend it to anyone who'd like to kill an hour and a half with a perfectly acceptable scary movie. The protagonists aren't exactly the sharpest knives in the drawer, but then again, it seems like being kinda stupid is a prerequisite for most horror movie characters. No matter, because the cast turns in inoffensive performances that are not too bad at all.
I must say, though, that of the entire cast, one member makes the entire movie worth seeing. If Samuel L. Jackson could carry Snakes on a Plane all by himself, then Sean Bean must have decided he was going to do the same thing with The Hitcher. Bean is nothing short of tremendous here, but I can't say that I've never seen him give an awful performance in a movie before. Regardless, Bean makes for a great villain, and his frightening yet charismatic performance greatly improves the quality of the entire movie.
All in all, I didn't think The Hitcher was all that bad. Like I said above, I wouldn't call it the best movie ever or the best remake ever, but I can't say that I hated it. So I'm going to give the remake of The Hitcher three and a half stars and a recommendation to see it based on Sean Bean alone. Go check it out.
I do enjoy writing movie reviews. I say that because I currently have two more that I'm working on. They're coming sooner or later.
I've also been pondering something I fleetingly mentioned in my last post. I said that I was still aspiring to make a movie one day, but I have no clue how I'm going to accomplish that. I'm not sure if I can come up with an original script, and stuff like equipment, music, a cast, and a crew are going to be expensive as all hell. I'm sure I could get set up if I could pull together a few hundred thousand, maybe a million dollars. But that still leaves the script. I did knock out a few pages before I temporarily abandoned the idea of writing one, so perhaps I could pick that back up. Maybe I could put something together when I feel more comfortable putting this together.
To be continued... maybe.
Sunday, January 21, 2007; 11:17 a.m.
I have to admit that the program director at the Louisville CW affiliate put me in a good mood last night. Why? Because after OVW's TV show last night, they aired Army of Darkness. And that's pretty darn awesome.
But that isn't all I wanted to post about. I had a conversation last night that really made me wonder what direction I wanted things to head in. I got to talking with a friend of mine's mom about how I used to work at the campus television station when I was in college, and it really made me nostalgic for those days. The pay wasn't all that great, but I didn't care. I had too much fun. I wish I could have kept that job even after I left college. And as much as I aspire to make a movie one day, working in TV production would be something I'd be satisfied doing.
I'll have to see where this leads me.
Monday, January 15, 2007; 9:43 p.m.
I mentioned back on Thursday that I was working on two more reviews as a follow-up to my previous doubleheader of Alone In The Dark and BloodRayne. Well, I've got them finished. So while you're here, why don't you check out my reviews of Slither and Snakes on a Plane?
Go read 'em, okay? Alright.
Friday, January 12, 2007; 11:43 a.m.
I was doing a little surfing around the incredible edible Internet, and landed on an intriguing news story at Batman-On-Film.com. Most of the cast for the big roles in the next Batman movie have been set. Christian Bale, Michael Caine, Gary Oldman, and Morgan Freeman are all set to reprise their roles from Batman Begins, while Heath Ledger will be playing Joker. But one major role has yet to be filled, that of Harvey "Two-Face" Dent. According to Batman-On-Film, Hugh Jackman, Liev Schrieber, and Ryan Phillippe might no longer be considered for the role, while Edward Norton, Jamie Foxx, and Eion Bailey are candidates. To that I respond: "What?!"
I've made it no secret that if it were up to me, I'd put Liev Schrieber in the role. I'm a fan of his work, plus he resembles Harvey Dent's appearance in "The Long Halloween." But these other contenders? I'm not sold. Neither Edward Norton or Jamie Foxx seem like the right person for the role, and I don't even know who Eion Bailey is. Should I have heard of him? Because I haven't.
Truth be told, I have no problem with Foxx or Norton being cast, but they aren't exactly the first people I'd think of if I were the movie's casting director. I know Foxx has an Oscar, but I don't really know if I'd really buy Two-Face if he were played by the guy whose biggest movie prior to Ray was Booty Call. Maybe it's just me, but I'd like to imagine that if he got the role, that Billy Dee Williams would declare jihad on him. If I were him, I'd still be kinda steamed that they replaced me with Tommy Lee Jones for Batman Forever. And Edward Norton... I just don't know. I'll admit that my familiarity with his work extends to only Fight Club, Red Dragon, and a few scenes from American History X, but he's never struck me as the Two-Face type. Maybe Harvey Dent, but not Two-Face.
I know I'm not the one doing casting for The Dark Knight, so I don't have a say in who plays who. If it were up to me, I'd go with Liev Schrieber as Two-Face and Crispin Glover as Joker. But I'm not going to argue with casting though, since I'm sure that The Dark Knight will be awesome no matter what.
Thursday, January 11, 2007; 12:42 a.m.
I've been doing a little thinking in regards to another double feature of reviews. My last one seems to be a big success, so another one might not be that bad of an idea. While my last one centered around two of Uwe Boll's craptacular video game adaptations, this upcoming double feature will be centering around a pair of movies that I actually enjoyed. I won't name them here, but I will say the two movies I've chosen are B-movies that were released last year. I really liked both of them, and you can be certain that both of them will be getting good reviews from me. I do hope the reviews turn out well, too. I don't know if they'll be as fun to read as my reviews for Alone In The Dark or BloodRayne because I don't have nearly as much venom to spew towards the two movies I'm currently writing about. But then again, not very many movies are as bad as Alone In The Dark or BloodRayne.
As usual, I don't have any particular target date to be finished by. Last time I set a target date, I ended up writing the review in five hours just to make sure I got it done on time. So let's not rush the reviews, okay? Okay.
Monday, January 8, 2007; 6:11 p.m.
Oh man, this weekend was such a blur. I'm still kind of in a haze, actually. And I'll tell you why.
Saturday night is when this whole thing began. Moses and Jennifer swung by around 10:30 with the intentions of crashing here for the night. The night started simple enough; we watched OVW's TV show, played a little Sims 2 on Moses's PS2 (which he'd brought with him), and since we were hungry and there were no nearby places open, I whipped up some pancakes. There was nothing else in the pantry, sue me.
After the little meal, we figured we'd watch a little Scarface. Jennifer owns the game but had never seen the movie, and I figured that since I got the DVD for Christmas, why not? But her and Moses ended up dozing off on the couch twenty minutes into the movie. I can't say as I blame them. It was something like two in the morning. Plus my couch is super-comfortable, so that's probably part of it too.
So I just let them sleep and took the opportunity to utilize the PS2 so I could play a bit of SmackDown vs. Raw 2007. I'm not exactly big on the control scheme, primarily due to my extreme fondness for the controls on WWE's GameCube games. But I must say that I do like the game very much. I'm gonna have to save up the necessary funds to procure a PS2 or an Xbox 360, since this is a game that I'd play a lot.
And I mean a lot. I think I ended up playing the game for maybe five hours straight, no joke. That story mode is crazy addictive. The only reason I stopped is because the awakened Moses asked if I'd help him beat Darkseid in Justice League Heroes. I think changing it up a tad was good, since if I'd played it any longer, I'd have probably ended up with the WWE logo burned into my corneas. We played a little of that and some Mario Kart: Double Dash on my GameCube, along with watched Moses make an unsuccessful shot at getting past the village in Resident Evil 4. He bought the game on Christmas Eve after he and I saw Rocky Balboa, and he's still new to both the franchise and the controls, so I'm not going to hold it against him. But anyway, we and Jennifer got a little tired of gaming, so we figured we'd go get a little breakfast at the McDonald's in Lawrenceburg.
I ended up taking a light catnap on the way there, but I'd been up all night, so I'm not complaining. We ended up at McDonald's at 10:54, with barely enough time to actually order breakfast before they switched over to the lunch menu. In retrospect, we probably could have saved twenty minutes by going to the Springfield McDonald's. Hindsight is 20/20, I guess. We were cutting it pretty close, but at least I got my bacon, egg, and cheese McGriddle craving satisfied.
We had about five hours to kill before Jennifer had to be at work, so we took a trip over to the Simpsonville flea market. Moses and I had been planning on that for a while now, and we thought that then was as good a time as any. We spent maybe two hours there before heading back to Lawrenceburg. The only bad part of the flea market was that I only had two bucks and a pocketful of change at the time. Otherwise I'd have made a purchase or two. But hey, it never killed anybody to window shop. And like the first trip to Lawrenceburg, I was napping as soon as I got in the car. It was another short catnap, but I sure needed it.
We ended up back at Jennifer's house so we could kill the remaining hour or so until she had to report to work, and once she headed in, Moses and I returned home to Willisburg. We played a bit of Marvel Ultimate Alliance, then I proceeded to fix myself a big bowl of chili since all I'd had to eat since breakfast was a bag of Skittles at the flea market. Then I sat down and promptly passed out. Didn't wake up until 10:00 this morning.
That ended up being a blessing, since outside of those two half-hour naps, I'd been awake for 37 hours straight. If I'd been awake any longer, things probably would have started looking like something out of one of Neil Gaiman's "Sandman" books. And that'd be terrible. I'm not very certain that I'll be doing any more sleepless marathons in the near future. At least not any that run for a day and a half. Whoever has the world record for longest time with no sleep is a far, far braver soul than I. No, I don't believe I'll be doing this again.
Unless I end up with a copy of SmackDown vs. Raw 2007 and a console to play it on, that is.
Friday, January 5, 2007; 10:39 p.m.
So how's your 2007 been so far? Mine's been prety rockin' so far. It's been kinda slow, but we're only five days into the year, so there's always room for it to pick up. Am I right? But regarding the last five days, I have no complaints. And I still have my eyes on my 2007 game plan: to move forward. Though while that is The Matt Sutton Experience's overarching theme for the new year, I really think I should narrow down exactly what needs to be moved forward on my path to 2008. So let's hit the bullet points.
So that's the rough blueprint for my 2007 battle plan. At this juncture, I'm not exactly sure on how each puzzle piece will fit. But I am quite sure that all three items will be achieved, and that I can really get things moving forward. At least things can't go too far backward.
(Credit to Libby's post from Tuesday for inspiring this one.)
Tuesday, January 2, 2007; 6:37 p.m.
I was talking to Libby last night about WWE's recently-released DVD about the AWA, and it got me wondering what other DVDs in that vein that WWE could put together. They've already covered ECW and the AWA, and they're preparing one on World Class, but what other promotions could WWE cover?
The Wikipedia article regarding WWE's video library says it includes WCW and Jim Crockett Promotions, Smoky Mountain, OVW, Stampede, and old-school NWA footage from Georgia and Florida. I don't know anything at all about the Georgia or Florida promotions, and very little about Stampede, but if I'd definitely buy DVDs about Smoky Mountain, OVW, or WCW if WWE chose to release them. I'd also really like to see WWE get ahold of the USWA tape catalog, because a DVD based on that could make for a great companion DVD to the World Class DVD (or even a Smoky Mountain DVD).
I don't really know if there'd be a huge market for DVDs regarding the Georgia and Florida promotions, since I'm not sure if they don't exactly have all that much name recognition. But I could see DVDs about Smoky Mountain or the evolution of WCW doing really big business. Of course, I'd be hoping that they could get Jim Cornette on loan from TNA to do the Smoky Mountain DVD if they were to put one together. But that's all a matter of if they do it.
And here's hoping that they do.
Monday, January 1, 2007; 2:54 p.m.
I'm sure we all know of the Oscars and the Golden Globes. But there's one more award ceremony that's just as important: the annual "Sutton At The Movies" Achievement Awards. Okay, so maybe I'm exaggerating that just a tad. I do, however, hope you guys have as much fun reading them as much as I enjoy putting them together every year. There's no real criteria for the awards I hand out, just my personal preferences.
So let's check 'em out, shall we?
I had a little bit of an internal debate over whether or not to give The Descent the Best Horror Movie award, but I ultimately decided not to. My reasoning is that I didn't give it to High Tension last year since it had already been out for two years prior to its initial American release. And since The Descent came out in 2005 over in England, I figured I'd follow precedent and exclude it from the running for Best Horror Movie. But since I felt it deserved to be highlighted, I decided to create the "Best Foreign Import" category for it.
But regardless, I'm satisfied with how the awards turned out. Now I can start working on the 2007 edition. So tune in this time next year for those, okay? Okay.
Monday, January 1, 2007; 12:41 p.m.
What am I hoping for with 2007?
I'm hoping for a year where things can move forward. I'm going to try try getting the ball rolling on things I should have done years ago. I've gotten complacent with my current situation, and 2007 will be the year that situation changes. So instead of sitting around letting life pass me by, I'm going to, as they say, take the bull by the horns. 2007 is going to be my year, I just know it.
I don't usually make New Year's resolutions, since I'd always forget about them by February when I did make them. But since I want 2007 to be a year of change, I'll go ahead and make a resolution: keep moving forward. And here's hoping I don't forget about that one in a month.
Monday, January 1, 2007; 12:00 a.m. - Happy New Year!
Happy new year, everybody, and welcome to the year 2007. It's still a little weird that we're now seven years into the twenty-first century. Or is that just me?
So how did 2006 go? I can't really complain, personally. I had a pretty good year. I saw lots of movies, I wrote lots of reviews, I got to have fun with my buddies throughout the year, and I got to attend my very first pro wrestling pay-per-view event. But as much as I enjoyed 2006, I'm hoping that 2007 will be better. Then again, everybody hopes for that every year.
The year that was 2006 was pretty darn good, but it's over and done with now. So come on, 2007. Let's see what you're made of.