Thursday, March 30, 2006

16 BLOCKS...

Saw 16 BLOCKS tonight with Glen. If you're looking for a fun action flick, definitely check it out. Bruce Willis and Mos Def are a great unlikely pair, perhaps Hollywood formula-ish, but hey, formulas become formulas because they work, right? And these guys both bring their own unique flavors to the familiar recipe, an oddball riff on LETHAL WEAPON-ness, with Willis as an over-the-hill detective with nothing to lose, Def as the hapless lowlife screw-up who can make the prosecution's case against a group of cops gone bad...

I actually, finally, didn't feel like laughing at David Morse in the role of the bad guy heavy in this. I can't remember every time I've seen him play assassin or thug or destined-to-go-postal (I *do* remember him in that Hackman/Hughes/Sarah Jessica COMA update... EXTREME MEASURES?), but it seems like I've seen him do it a LOT (OH, he was also in 12 MONKEYS, but in a better fitting role), and almost every time, I've found him to be hard to buy as dangerous or scary.

I know some of that comes from my first imprinting of him being the quiet doctor on ST. ELSEWHERE, who was not a bad guy, soft spoken, a good man, sadly, by the harshest of misfortunes, driven to a bit of madness, but not a bad guy. I think he's been picked for these hitman type roles because he's not the guy you'd expect to be the dangerous one, which of course makes him exactly the guy you expect to be the dangerous one, right? He is picked to play up the "quiet guy, keeps mostly to himself" idea of menacing. Well, I just never bought it. He seems more mannequin in those roles than killing machine. In BLOCKS, tho, he gets to be all personality, That Guy, smart, ready with the patter in the tensest of situations, connected to other human beings. I really think he plays this buddy-buddy guy who goes bad much better than the cold blank stare killing type.

ST. ELSEWHERE. Does any station anywhere carry that show anymore? Denzel, Harmon, Begley, frickin DEAL OR NO DEAL glove-on-the-head Mandel, and the voice of KITT! *sigh* What a great show that was, dayumn! I think it was channel 38 here in Boston, before it became the UPN a decade or so ago, they would play ELSEWHERE and CHEERS whenever they had a gap in their programming that wasn't bought up for infotisement. Beantown pride.

I don't think they ever played GOODNIGHT, BEANTOWN, tho. Go figure. I miss ya, Bill B. Who else ever held his own opposite The King and the Hulk?

Hrmm... I was talking about... What was I talking about? Oh yeah! 16 BLOCKS... How to boil it down into a synopsis...?

Oh, I know! I sent Glen an email listing movie options downtown. Let's see how I put it then...
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

I'd see...

Video game that kills its players in real life the way they die in the game, only at fewer frames per second, and fewer polygons.

Dark comedy about a lobbyist for big tobacco trying to be the good guy AND do his job in the face of mounting evidence that smoking kills. Obviously fiction.

Family mutated by atomic bomb testing likes to eat visitors.

16 BLOCKS @ 8
Good cop/detective Bruce Willis has to get witness-against-bad-cops Mos Def, across town to testify. The rest of the police force is against them.

Milla Jovovich is a supermodel superweapon that superkills supereverybody. Also, she's the only thing standing between superfreedom and supertyranny, like all supermodels. Based on a true story.

Any of that look good to you?
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

V FOR VENDETTA and INSIDE MAN were not on the list because I'd seen them already. For full price at Boston Common ($9.75 I think?) I wanted to see something new.

By the way, both flicks are excellent. V is definitely more excellent, tho. If you're in a situation where you have to choose - see V first. When you get out of that, flip a coin to decide whether to sneak into INSIDE MAN or 16 BLOCKS.

Anyhow, Glen came back to me with STAY ALIVE or 16 BLOCKS, and I had to go with BLOCKS. I *know* STAY ALIVE is gonna be crap, even with Adam Goldberg as one of the gamer victims, and if I'm gonna pay full price for a show, I'd rather it was better than crap.

(I saw DOOM at a matinee.)

Not that DOOM was crap...

Cuz it's actually a pretty satisfying spam-in-a-space-cabin action flick with a couple of creative kills and one very entertaining "first person shooter" segment, heh...

I just, y'know... couldn't be sure of that before seeing it...

I'm just sayin =)

16 BLOCKS! I highly recommend it for an adrenaline fixx with much more heart than you'd expect. Maybe even smarmy for a moment or three, but those moments balanced against the rest of the cat-and-mouse action are just right. There are some clever little twists to keep things interesting, but nothing you haven't seen before. They're well employed here is all.

You'll likely find the affectations Mos Def bestows upon his character Eddie's voice and speechifying a bit annoying, but except for losing a couple of lines of dialogue to apparent mumbliness, it's worth enduring to get to know Eddie.

Kind of interesting, maybe not really Important - and the marketing doesn't push the idea - but from my reckoning of the events in the movie, versus the length of the experience of watching the movie, most of the film seems to happen "in real time," y'know? A la 24 and NICK OF TIME (Johnny Depp vs. Christopher Walken a few years back). Just a little interesting thing...

After the movie Glen gave me the dumbest headache. I got a ride home from him, and when dropping me off, he started talking about how he doesn't get how people can be allowed to park in a bus stop space in front of my building. The T bus stop sign has another sign on the same post that says "NO PARKING" with some conditions written below it. I explained that you can park there only for certain hours, when the bus isn't running. So he looks at the sign a little more closely, and says, "6am to 7pm except Saturday and Sunday." Or was it "weekends?" I'm not sure.

So he says that a few times out loud...

(You can see it coming, can't you?)

"Wait, 6am to 7pm... EXCEPT Saturday and Sunday... Does that mean I CAN park here on the weekend? No, I can park here EXCEPT then, right? No, but I CAN park here when it's NOT 6am to 7pm, so EXCEPT that would be that I CAN park... What does that mean?"

I wasn't about to try to explain/parse that out for Glen. I got out of the car, said "Good night," and walked away into my building.

I'm not sure how the sign copy would be correctly diagrammed and factored out, but I'm sure it wil match what I do know - that cars are parked in the bus stop space overnight on weeknights and all day and night on weekends and don't get ticketed or towed.

Keep on keepin on~

"But you can be smart every day!"
--- Mos Def, as Eddie, 16 BLOCKS.

Wednesday, March 29, 2006

Q: You know what would be really great with some vanilla ice cream...?

A: This apple strudel Pop-Tart I'm snackin on.

Toasted up they smell all apple pie. Or maybe it's apple strudel, if I knew exactly what apple strudel was. Have I had apple strudel? I really cannot recall.

Anyhow, they are VERY tasty, especially for Pop-Tarts. My longtime standby fave flaves have been strawberry frosted (or is that frosted strawberry?) and chocolate frosted (again w the reverse wordage question...). Gotta say though, that apple strudel tops them both. Even with a point or two off for crumbliness - I'm not sure if it's from the bready part, which maybe they've turned into something more pie crusty, or from the flavor bits (pardon the technical jargon) on the outside, y'know, embedded in the drizzled frosting/sugar.

Really, would be a perfect mix-in or smoosh-in. Damn lactose intolerance!

I suppose I could smoosh-in some lactaid pills with it, tho.

Just sayin~

I also really dig their bitterfilmsy squiggly stick figure promotional art and animation. Y'know, dinosaur at the breakfast table? Apparently they're pushing some kind of webisodes at the Pop-Tarts site that I'm just not ready to commit myself to. (I've still got half a season of OC and V.MARS saved and unwatched! =)

Keep on keepin on~

Tuesday, March 28, 2006

tonight at the Brattle!

Was originally expecting to spend the evening at the office, but it turns out that tomorrow will be the late night. Now I've got my Tuesday night free... What to do...? What to do...?


Anyone wanna catch a double feature? BREAKING NEWS - A 2004 Hong Kong cops vs. robbers adrenaline fixx - and THE PRESIDENT'S LAST BANG - a 2005 South Korean political dark comic conspiracy thriller (non-fiction) at the Brattle tonight, starting w the 7.30pm show?

Let me know if you can. =)

Keep on keepin on~


I first saw the live-action version of the SIMPSONS intro at Josh's site a few weeks back. It was up multiple times at YouTube back then, but I didn't see any definitive or authoritative explanation or credit for the ingenious and inspired bit of work. The one thing I feel I miss in the live-action version is seeing the readout from Maggie being scanned at the supermarket cashier. Not vital, but just a lost opportunity for some extra fun with the material.


Tonight, after Monday volleyball w "Say My Name," Steve and I hit the Greenbriar for a drink and some pizza with some other BVA-types. At one point conversation jumped around from "It's Peanut Butter Jelly Time" to the SIMPSONS intro. JJ mentioned it first. Turned out that no one else had seen it besides us. At the time, I figured JJ must have caught it online, like I did, but now, I'm thinking that perhaps he didn't catch it on the internetz, cuz...

This week, I saw it again...

As the SIMPSONS show opener on Sunday night!

Okay, specifically, I watched it just a half hour or so ago, as the actual show opener to this Sunday night's (March 26) episode, saved on my replayTV. Was sweet seeing it at TV resolution, altho a little compromised, I think, by the TV ratio, vs. the letterbox form it's been in online (I only noticed because I couldn't see live-action Smithers next to Mr. Burns checking his watch - there was one other difference I noticed, too...).

I did a little digging and found that the short was intentionally placed on YouTube as viral promotion for a UK TV station's SIMPSONS publicity campaign. It apparently received Matt Groening's blessing, and was tapped for use as the show's intro this week. Produced by a UK ad/media firm, and presumably, shot in the UK, you'll see that Marge is in the driver's seat on the right side of the car in the online versions. However, in the opener on Sunday night, that shot is flipped left-right, so that Marge appears to be driving the American way.

For whatever reason, Homer is in the driver's seat on the left side in both versions. Go figure.

Being UK-produced, it's a perfect intro for an episode written by and starring Ricky Gervais, creator, writer, and star of the Empire's original THE OFFICE series (as opposed to the Colonies', starring Steve Carell).

Dadgum evening volleyball league... Muckin w my metabolism and keeping me wakesy in the wee hours. Will be a fine TIRED day at the office tomorrow. Hohum.

Keep on keepin on~

Sunday, March 26, 2006

got my 1000 friends... It's been showing up in random sectors of my radar in the last six months or so. The first memorable non-newzy/non-promotional hit was a smartalec remark by Jill to Rachel that went something like, "Oh, probably cuz you were busy dolling up your MySpace account..."

That does seem to be the way I've heard it refered to most often. As an addictive time sink.

Well, a friend of mine caught me over IM recently and actually got me to visit the site for an anonymous trial run (which means I signed up and put in no personal info, but had a look around at what appear for the most part to be the resurrection of the crappiest geocities and tripod personal pages I've ever seen). I dunno. I can see what it is, and what it sorta does, but I'm not feeling a tractor beam pulling me in...


Heh, still, the kids seem to love it.

Friendster's too "gay" to be cool, reports THE DAILY SHOW's Demetri. Ha - I LOVE that kids-love/old-people-hate flip bar chart! =)

My friend Shawn recently explained to me that has become a de facto "background check" resource of sorts for the authorities and institutional authority-types. Sure enough, I see this bit of news (that link's dead, here's a diff one to coverage of the same story) online tonight. She mentioned a news story about a gay student being expelled from a Christian university, outed once his MySpace was discovered. She also mentioned that employers are using it to check out prospective hires and check up on current employees.

[Found out it was that led to that student's dismissal for a semester at John Brown U...]

Woohoo, go-o-o-o-o interweb!

The odd little conjunction of stories on MySpace and social networking spurred me to leave this dropping on my bloglawn here, but I dunno how to explain it exactly... I haven't been much in the writing frame of mind of late.

I'll attempt a bit of summ-up...

Work's gotten busy. Pulling some late and weekend hours to keep things on schedule with a project.

Haven't seen any movies in the last month except for V FOR VENDETTA (like the MATRIX, but in a different flavor - SEE IT! - I've been wanting to but havent' managed to rally to conjure up a rave review for it... soon, I hope) and INSIDE MAN (just caught that today, dig it mucho, stil percolating on it).

I'm not feeling tip-top at vball. I think I've gained a dozen pounds from not playing for those weeks off for my ankle, and on top of that being not happy about not playing, bleah. Still, the ankle is feeling better, not worse. Except for one bad misstep, Thursday fours this past week felt pretty good. This week will be a bit of a gauntlet. Playing Monday night 6's, Thursday 4's, the Friday night BVA fundraiser tourney, and Saturday at a CR tournament somewheres.

TV's been pretty good to me. We did a 4-hour 24 Tuesday marathon two weeks ago. That's really just about how the show should be watched, in four hour blocks. Pretty satisfying, altho that particular block was full of some tough hits (Edgar and Tony).

I just watched the last two SHIELDs this evening - brilliant and mean. Poor weasel Shane. I suspected how it would go w Lemanski, but y'know, he didn't even call Vic and whatzhishead to tell them to meet at the abandoned body shop. Pre-frickin-meditated. Dayumn.

I'm due for a second viewing of the BSG finale soon. I re-read my blog on it and realized I pretty much skipped over the Roslyn election fix, and then coming clean. I'm not sure that I need to say anything about it, but, well, for me, it was some good, anxious, television. Ready to be getting away with it, being confronted with it, knowing full well the consequences of owning up, and then stepping up and stepping down... Yeah, definitely gonna hafta watch that again.

Rowan and I are hunting for a new home. We've seen a dozen or so different places in the Cambridge and Somerville area and found two, maybe three, that we can actually stand. See, next season our little UPN comedy will be jumping the shark when my sister joins the regular cast. We're shopping around together with the intent of getting a place for Rowan and my sister, and myself, all together. We figure together we'll be able to afford a better place than we would separately.

Also, they can cook.

Keep on keepin on~

The best thing I ever heard:
"Mr. T...? Actually, it's Mr. T-E-A, like the drink... He's an Asian guy, who likes ginseng..."
--- Demetri Martin on THE DAILY SHOW's "Trendspotting."

Sunday, March 19, 2006

Saturday, March 18, 2006

Saturday mornin...

When will I stop getting zits? Bleah! Frickin frackin sazzafrazzin....

BIG *yawn* Saturday morning...

Got two washers of bright and dark clothes running down in the laundry room now. Had a whole other load's worth of greys (they don't quite look white now) to throw in, but the other machines were already recently into wash cycles, bleah. I threw a couple pairs of sporty socks in with the brights just to have for vball this week, in case I don't get back to the laundry room before then. Set the cell phone to alarm me in... oh, about a half hour now. Gonna click thru what I've got saved up on replayTV and try and kill a show while I wait.

Yup. Big Saturday. El Sabado Gigante!

I figure I'll get the laundry dried and folded up in time to hit the office around McLunch time. Yeah, we've got a project in that was supposed to be pretty 9-to-6ish for a few regular work weeks, but nothing goes as planned, right? It's taking longer for the client to wrangle and deliver the assets we need than either of us expected, so we're having to put in some late and weekend hours to meet some milestones. I opted out of Thursday night vball (thanks for subbing, A) to put in those hours at the office. I hope I don't hafta do that again, altho with the lag sort of built into production now, I'm afraid I shall. Bleah. Still, the client's been cool about giving us the weekends to move Friday deadlines to Monday. Ain't that shooper?

I suppose "giving" should actually be replaced with a word more like "taking," eh?

If I had anything going on, I'd probably be a bit more miffed. No biggie, tho. Somethin to plan on, I suppose.

Tomorrow Rowan and I are gonna continue our home search and hit a few open houses with and without our agent. Should be edjumacational. That sorta means I've gotta get most all of the workywork done today and tonight. We'll see how THAT works out. =)

I'm hoping to hunker down and finish something of a decent plug/review I started last night for V FOR VENDETTA, but alas, I'm not feeling it just now. Short version - GO SEE IT!!!!

Keep on keepin on~

Thursday, March 16, 2006


May the Force be with you, Zorknapp.

Keep on keepin on~

The DaColbert Code WORKS!

It's probably been all over the internet already - *and* on a post-Oscars REPORT - but I only just found out last night while watching the replayTV'd COLBERT REPORT from March 3...

Hokey frickin smokes! Stephen Colbert picked the Oscar winners using his DaColbert Code! He didn't go thru all the Academy categories, but hit the biggies - best leads, best supporting, and best picture. Wack!

The DaColbert Code itself wasn't all THAT funny, but it was all basically a set-up to play off of his position on BROKEBACK MOUNTAIN from earlier in the show - that it can't be that good at all if all these important people - among them, the Prez and Colbert himself - haven't seen it! So, when he gets around to applying the code to choosing best picture, he can't make the DaColbert leap from "Space Mountain" to BROKEBACK MOUNTAIN... which of course leads to him choosing the correct winner - CRASH!

Pretty frickin incredible.

If I can find the bit somewhere, I'll post the link. [FOUND IT!]

Note: He also dedicated a good five minutes at the end of the show to mark the passing of D&D from the offline world of DMs and polyhedral dice in the wood-panel finished basement to the online world of no direct human contact whatsoever. =)

Keep on keepin on~

The best thing I ever heard:
"The social outcasts of today's junior high schools are relieved of the agony of any human contact."
--- Stephen Colbert, THE COLBERT REPORT, on the launch of Stormreach, the online version of D&D.

Ides of March...

A random conjunction of tiny stars in my life has resulted in me arriving at March 15 in my current subway commuter reading, THE FOOL ON THE HILL by Matt Ruff, on the date of the same count on the real and actual calendar. Funky, no?

It's a fun book, set mostly in Cornell, in Ithaca, NY, and involving modern (well, mid-to-late 80s) characters' lives falling into the roles of Shakespearean and classic fairy tale archetypes, all playing parts the lead up to a massive collision/conflict prophesied to take place on the Ides of March. I read Ruff's GAS, SEWER, ELECTRIC, his second book, years ago, and dug it mucho. When I picked up FOOL, I *thought* it was his NEXT book, but it turns out it's his first. There's something about his writing for me that makes it very easy to consume. It's somehow loose and flowing. It probably helps that FOOL comes in two- to ten-page bite-sized sections, too, making almost every red line commute more satisfying than a typical read.

Not yet ready to tackle a report on last night's 24 Tuesday...

Had a couple of f'd up dreams...

One was full of spiders. Spiderwebs unavoidable. So many spiders on everything that if you didn't know, it looked like the walls and floors and ceilings and table tops and coats and blankets were moving... shifting...

Very unpleasant dream.

The other was no doubt alarm clock inspired... A fire alarm in our apartment building. I was too busy doing something or other (probably watching ARRESTED DEVELOPMENT or BSG =) to be bothered to get up off me bum and leave the building. By the time I finally stepped up and out, the hallways were all smoky and firefolk were all about, to and fro. I think I was about to get a stern talking-to when I woke up.

Exciting stuff, eh?

Keep on keepin on~

Tuesday, March 14, 2006

Say My Name v2.0

Tonight was the first night of the new session of BVA Monday co-ed reverse league vball. We were down one Lauren/Schwa, but Josh/Schwa managed to wrangle a Scott to pick up some of that slack - but certainly not all, as girl-Schwa is NOT replaceable! We also broke in two new NameSayers - Christy (or is it Kristen?) and Mark. I think Christy is new to Boston area volleyball, though she seems familiar, and although I've been in many league sessions with Mark, I've never played with him before. As bum-slap-happy Sarah once said - "I can't believe I've never played with March Arkibald before!"


Christy's got good hands, and set kinda Sara-style for us on the men's net. On defenes I saw some excellent open-hand passes. I've really gotta make myself do that more, bleah. She also kinda sorta in-a-way KILLS the ball. That don't hurt none. Jackie, Lauren, now Christy, and a number of excellent subs last session... Captain Josh *does* have a gift for finding some very fun and talented hitters to set.

Mark. Great passing tonight, and a heckuva versatile swing. Gotta say, tho, he brings a potentially dangerous giggle trigger factor to the team. It would only take a fraction of his capacity for hijinks to incapacitate Jackie, either with a shock or a fit of laughter. Gotta watch out for that.

It was a fun night of ball. I'm still a bit gimpy anklewise. It didn't hurt me too badly on the women's net for my setting, but on the men's net, on defense (which I love to play) I felt like I couldn't sidestep/dive as well or as fast as I usually do in reaction to hits and deflections. I was actually hitting a bit better on Friday night than I did tonight, but I think that was more due my shoulder -which I tweaked somewhere early on in the evening- than my ankle.

I am a frickin mess. Age and poor maintenance. I've just gotta suck it up...

This I type as a blue gel ice pack melts and sweats, wrapped around my ankle with an ace bandage.

The multiple name thing on the roster is not so conspicuous this session. We'll have the two Schwas, but only one each of Christy, Jackie, Mark, and myself. There's a lot of potential among the subs pool, tho. We've got Jack and Jacky I'm sure, and there's many a Christy, Kristi, and Kristin out there.

Should be a fun session! Still, can't wait to start messing myself up outdoors and on the beach! =)


Keep on keepin on~

Been watching a replayTV'd OFFICE while typing... The best things I ever heard - funny, then serious, then funny again.

"Remember on LOST...? When they met The Others...?"
--- Dwight, turning to the faux documentary camera as the staff leaves the office and descends into the warehouse.

"There are always a million reasons not to do something..."
--- Jan Levinson.

"This here is a run-out-the-clock situation, just like upstairs."
--- Stanley, explaining to the intern that efficiency is not what is wanted while on their field trip to the warehouse.

Saturday, March 11, 2006

(way too much on) Battlestar Galactica...

2.20: "Lay Down Your Burdens (2 of 2)"


Cylon Mother Frakkers...

Well! So THAT's how it's gonna be, is it?


Frustrating goodness.

What follows is a late late night mess of half-baked meanders and wishful thinking sparked by 90 minutes of BATTLESTAR GALACTICA finale action. I'm still processing, and in the afterglow right now find some great potential in the twists of the story as well as some annoying and disappointing meanness in some turns...

Launch all Vipers!~
- - - - - - - - - - - - -

Cylon Revolution, anyone...?

No details of the Cylon revolution... Probably just as well, as I'm enjoying imagining a stadium wave-like phenom sweeping the Cylon population of Caprica as the war heros touch heads with their closest Cylon brothers and sisters, Conehead-style, and each of them do the same to their sibs, and so on, and so on, and so on, until it all trickles down via bluetooth to their tin soldiers and flying doggies - the war and occupation was Wrong, go back to doing whatever it is you were doing before.

I wonder what that was, anyhow? First looking to the left, then looking to the right, then back to looking to the left again...?

Anders never mentions his Gildenstern experience in the collapsed underground garage cradle of the revolution, y'know, in the rubble beneath the Cylon (haha) Starbucks? =)

Not that he would necessarily know just what it is he was witnessing, but for frak's sake, at least MENTION it to your Viper jockey girlfriend, why doncha?

I mean, he knew the fembots behavior to be unique and significant enough that he took the time out to ask the Cylon war heros: Who are you? What kind of people are you?

And I think it was Caprica Six who replied: I don't know...
- - - - - - - - - - - - -

One year later...

Hilarious and entertaining that they do it while focused on Baltar, and landing a year in the future, introducing his little harem-cabinet. The jump is a wonderful device, in my nerd mind mirroring the upcoming (or is it already on? I haven't gotten my fixx in a few weeks : P) "one year later" that the DCU is launching in its monthly superhero titles. I think they're also gonna be spitting out an issue a week for a year of a new title, called 52, that will tell the story of that "skipped" year even as the regular books jump ahead and continue month-to-month. Yet another brilliant scheme to take all my money in 2.99-4.99 doses... The bastards.

My passive radar is always up for little hooks from the original series transmogrified and dropped into the current one (as much as fans might frown on the idea, I do think the writers and creators must keep the original near to their hearts). When the prospect of Sharon Jr. became imminent in this season's storylines, I thought about how the baby could be made a significant PARTICIPANT in what was going on in the human and Cylon societies. I really didn't want the child to simply become a football or McGuffin (at least not for more than a couple episodes), but I also didn't want for some unpredictable accelerated growth phenomenon to zippily age and mature the baby into a character who could be tooling around in a Viper w Apollo or losing cubits to Starbuck in hexagonal poker or whatever it is they play.

The only "solution" I could come up with would be what they SORTA did in the half-baked "revival" of the original series which allowed them to introduce Dr. Z. Between seasons - or was there a hiatus? - the show went from BSG to GALACTICA 1980. The show jumped ahead about 20 years in its timeline, when the ragtag fugitive fleet finally finds Earth's solar system. At this point, Apollo and Starbuck are out of the picture. The show did still lean heavily on a Dylan-Brandon combo for its leads. Boxey, Apollo's adopted son, is now a viper pilot, teamed up w some other pretty-boy blond Starbuck-type wingman, and they drop in on earth trying to ready primitive 20th century humanity for the culture shock of meeting their long lost brothers, and the Cylons who have been trailing them. It basically took on the INCREDIBLE HULK/KNIGHT RIDER storytelling archetype, only not nearly as sophisticated or mature (ha!). They'd fly down to Earth (the U.S.A., of course, at least, I don't recall them dropping in on any other countries?) on their flying turbocycles - that's right! *FLYING* MOTORCYCLES! - to make first contact w sympathetic elements in the military or UFO nuts or academics, stumble onto some misfortune of the Earth locals, use their wits and advanced technology to help them out, make a few friends, leave almost no traces, and fly back to Galactica for a laugh with Commander Tighe and Dr. Z on the bridge.

Dr. Z. I'm not up to explaining the back-story of Dr. Z just now, but will say that it's the only memorable episode of the 1980 series. The short of it - he's the love child of Starbuck and an angel. As such, he's gifted w empathic and/or telepathic powers and superior intelligence. I don't know what abilities he got from his angel heritage. Heh.

Yeah, so, I figure, to make Sharon Jr. some kind of real player in things, the story would have to jump maybe a dozen years, at least until just before puberty, when her mutant powers would manifest themselves.

Felgercarb. I was a decade or so off on that one. O well.

Apollo looked somehow chunkier a year older. Not bad. I like Starbuck better w short hair. At the wedding of Starbuck and Abercrombie, do you suppose Apollo spoke now, when everyone else would rather he held his peace? Sad, that. Let it go, man...

And she was all into Apollo's brother to begin with!

Moustachioed Adama. Not bad.

Gaeta looks to be a bit of a tool, being Gaius's whipping boy and all.

The Chief as union leader... His fist pumping and rallying his fellow workers, with his expecting Cally by his side... that felt like a memorable scene from some famous gangster/political film, didn't it?

I dunno about his inspirational speech about throwing your bodies into the works of the machine. Crayzay extention of metaphor there, no? Wonder if Zarick comes round threatening to break his legs, hrm?

A little creepy, putting the Chief and Cally together only AFTER he gives her a sound out-of-his-mind beating... HONEYMOONERS-esque... only, no laughtrack w your domestic violence...

Right. I'm totally reaching now, just for entertainment value...

Ummm... there's entertainment value, isn't there?
- - - - - - - - - - - - -

Dean Stockwell, Cylon padre...

Was great seeing him show up on BSG. Was it just QUANTUM LEAP's Al that built up his sci-fi entertainment cred? He's definitely got Hey-It's-That-Guy! status, but I see him on screen in BSG and he feels like a sci-fi heavy to me, an anchorman, y'know? Like seeing Nimoy, Shatner, Boxleitner, or Bakula, y'knkow? Michelle Forbes demonstrated that sort of presence as Kane. And Richard Hatch brings it pretty hard w his Zarick. I was very pleased to see him Cylon up, and *loved* how he nonchalantly handles every bit of his outing as a Cylon.

When Galactica preacher is led down to the brig to meet his Caprican brother, did I hear an ARRESTED DEV Buster Bluth greeting? - Hey, brother! =)

Where did the preacher twins go? Was Roslyn's suggestion to blow them out an airlock to meet their Cylon god taken as an actual order?

That the Caprica preacher was all up on the revolution, but BSG preacher wasn't, shows that skinbag Cylons who are out of contact w other Cylons have only their own will-slash-programming to guide them. There could be Cylons out of the loop, or separated from the mainstream of their society... living among the humans, or Cylon Family Robinsoning it somewhere remote... up to who-knows-what...plotting terrorist attacks... homemaking... babymaking... programming video games... blogging...
- - - - - - - - - - - - -

Rambling questions and thoughts...

One year later, are there any skinbags living among the New Caprican settlers?

Is Baltar taking those pills to keep Number Six out of his head? Was he able to do that before? Maybe he's having nightmares...?

Where's Helo's Sharon? Are we to believe she's a hater? Helo's on the bridge of the Galactica. Does he keep her on a PDA in his pocket? Would she want to rejoin the Cylons? Couldn't the other skinbags living in the fleet have saved her baby?

Why'd the Pegasus Six get all seducy with Baltar just that once? Did she hope to convince him to not settle humanity on New Caprica? She wasn't Baltar's Number Six, after all. She didn't have feelings for him except perhaps for gratitude (or resentment?) for her recovery and escape. Was she *giving* him something? Biological? Viral? Cylon? She seemed to be ready to off herself regardless of Baltar's first executive order.

I was a bit disappointed that we didn't get to see her DO something with the Cylon sympathizers. Turn the movement into something more religious or cultish, y'know? Actually make some human converts with Cylon teachings. And then, at some point, have to confront the Cylon heros and their conclusions about the war, religion, and humanity...

Was Pegasus Six's original Cylon programming at work when she offed herself? Knowing that humanity wouldn't leave the protection of New Caprica's sensor-scrambling cloud, and not knowing anything about the revolution among her people, she blew the nuke to signal the Cylons...?

Did anyone else get a whiff of "Mirror, Mirror" ambience in the characters and scenarios and mood of the finale tonight?

I'll spare you any detailed tangent recollections of the shows, but what's going on with BSG reminds me more and more of bits of the GUNDAM and ROBOTECH Japanese animated series.

Why'd the Cylons come looking for humanity after deciding they should just on about their being-the-best-machines-they-can-be...?

I gotta cogitate some more on that... Too much, y'know? Selfish Cylon heros wanted to be reunited w the humans they miss and love... Maybe they see a danger threatening the humans and arrive to protect/guide them for their own good... Perhaps they still haven't figured out successful procreation... Maybe, with the help of a form of fusion, they've discovered how to turn human beings into efficient power cells?

Yeah, gonna hafta let that brew a while...

Humans mounting a resistance in a society controlled by an alien species with a dark agenda... Hrmmm... Is this gonna turn into V? =)
- - - - - - - - - - - - -


Anyone else catch a funny, knowing, almost smirk of a look on Felix Gaeta when he turned to live Tighe alone w the Zephyr ballots? Sure, from the get-go he was something of a nerd fanboy of Baltar, but would he really be happy about being able to turn the Presidency over to him? Hrmmm... He gets to play Gaius's whipping boy and whore wrangler a year later. I suppose that could be a motivator.

Perhaps he's a Cylon? Either way, Cylon or Baltar sycophant, think maybe Felix was bluffing to draw Tighe, or any possible conspirators in that chain of custody, out? If you called the whatever officer of the Zephyr that day and asked about misspelled candidate names, would they know anything about it? Or maybe he just wanted to create enough doubt about the ballots that there would have to be a recount or second election that could be pushed to Baltar's advantage? He just happened to hit the jackpot?
- - - - - - - - - - - - -


I thought maybe the show would DROP the Cylon threat for a season, just show us how humans can be a much worse enemy to humans than Cylons. Go a little Space WEST WING, or perhaps some New Caprica SHIELD action? Maybe have the odd skinbag or twelve trying to make good on New Caprica, a la ALIEN NATION...? But, hardships of humanity living day-to-day... I suppose you can just tune into the news for that. So, they skipped it and rejoin the story when the Cylons return. Still...

What if...?

Did anyone else feel a little bit of DEADWOOD in the crowded muddied streets and alleys between the tents, shanties, and grounded spaceships of New Caprica? Scans revealed something like no (limited?) animal life, right? For a second or two, I was really hoping for the potential for some FIREFLY coolness, seeing sheriff Starbuck herding cattle w the help of a trained/converted Cylon fighter, y'know?

That would also sort of be an adaptation of an old school BSG episode.
- - - - - - - - - - - - -

How many Cylons...?

Have we seen six models, or seven? There's Number Six, Sharon/Number Eight, that smarmy PR guy, the black doctor from the Farm on Caprica, Lucy Lawless, and Preacher Stockwell.

The smarmy PR guys is NOT the same guy that Adama takes on in the ammo depot in the pilot, right? He's a copy of the dashing religious Aussie type that Starbuck gets to interrogate, right? AND he's the (resurrected) Cylon who shows up in Anders's tent looking for her in the finale, no? I kinda remember that that Cylon got under Starbuck's skin a bit.

My memory for the first season is already slipping in all kindsa ways, bleah.

I keep picturing the Aussie guy in a Hawaiian print shirt.

How many skinbags are there? Are new ones being created/born? What have they got for memories when they do that? Do they age?

I really wish they aged, cuz then it becomes possible that we could've seen the same model at different ages and believed them to be completely different, y'know?

Oh - I can't believe they went and skipped a year without doing my twin story!! Frack.

So tired...
- - - - - - - - - - - - -

Baltar's Number Six...

Not that it matters after the revelation that Caprica Six has her own Baltar figment, but in regards to Baltar's little Six - how could a figment of his imagination proselytize to him in the name of a Cylon god he consciously knows nothing about?
- - - - - - - - - - - - -

Contingency plan...?

When the Cylons arrive at New Caprica, do the Battlestars and the fleet have a particular destination to jump to? A secret cache of Cylon-Colonial weapons, ships, soldiers, and pilots? The Colonial fleet and military have been holding back, pulling a "if hours were days" or whatever it was that Spock pulls on Khan in WRATH, y'know? Or something much akin to red and blue squadrons, under the orders of Apollo and Starbuck, do in the old school BSG pilot.

The Colonial fleet encounters these carapacetic dudes what run a mining colony and casino on a human-habitable planet. The civilians and civvie government are ready to stop here and settle down w the friendly Ovions party insects. They plan a big celebration on the surface to honor the military and commemorate the end of their flight. At the festivities, however, Apollo and Starbuck notice a lot of unfamiliar Colonial soldiers, many of them in ill-fitting uniforms. Well, when the Ovions finally reveal that they're in league w the Cylons, the humans are sure to be decimated, their miliary forces lured into the casino trap planetside. However, the reason all those unfamiliar flyboys were at the celebration to begin with is that Adama had the real military hiding out elsewhere on the surface, along with their Vipers and weaponry, laying in wait for the Cylons to spring their trap! Cuckers!

Wow. That's it, isn't it? I mean, that could really be it.

New Caprica is the Ovion mining and casino planet. It takes a year instead of a few days or weeks. And the hidden reserve of military might could be anywhere FTL-able. Where exactly they'd get the new soldiers is kind of fuzzy, but maybe they rotate offworld in a way that doesn't seem too conspicuous. OR... A sympathetic Cylon has helped them build a droid factory, a Cylon bakery...?

Okay, maybe it's crazy talk...

Well, MORE crazy talk...

But I like it.

Geez. I gotta get a life.

Keep on keepin on~

Friday, March 10, 2006

some cheese with this whine...?

It's not quite 11.30pm and I'm back and showered after a BVA team fundraiser evening tournament. If it seems kind of early to be back for a big winner, well, you're not wrong.

I feel like I'm building a pretty strong case for being a tournament jinx. You add up the talents and skills of the teams I've been on, even when underrated for a tournament, in general, they... we... should make a better showing than we do. Bleah.

And tonight was another opportunity to play w some new players that I consistently enjoy playing against and watching - Julia, Sara, and Ben S. Keri was our captain, and she's probably sick of me, heh. The other Brian on the team is sorta familiar, probably from tournaments, but didn't really know him from league play, y'know? All very good players. And I had to go and jinx us. Foo.

True, I'm coming off of... Well, okay, maybe I'm still sort of right in the middle of... a sprained ankle from almost three week back...

Yeah, yeah. It's a bit too soon to be back on the court, but... You know how much I love playing, as illogical as it may seem - how am I a match for this sport? - I just can't NOT play, y'know? It's ALWAYS gonna be a bit too soon.

Heck, my ankle was probably still sprained from the last time I turned it when I rolled it this time.


Sorry, not a lot of interesting or productive (if it's ever) writing here. Mostly a slow steady vent and getting thoughts out of my head and into words for me to examine...

I shouldn't be playing yet on this ankle. It's just getting me frustrated.


I'm not gonna NOT play. So...

I've just gotta suck it up. Bleah.

I'm not a jinx.


I'm gonna wrap it up with an ice pack now and go watch the BSG finale. The writers will dazzle me for 89 minutes, and then in the last minute, make me hate them, I'm sure. Does EVERY season finale HAVE to be a cliffhanger?

Dean Stockwell wants to be a Cylon, doesn't he?

And unless Sharon was wired into EVERY raptor on the rescue raid on Caprica, that one that found the "hidden" planet, had to have a Cylon on board, right? To set the trap. Richard Hatch, Cylon?

Let's find out...~

Keep on keepin on~

Wednesday, March 08, 2006

EPISODE 2 flashback =)

Late last night, I caught a replay of the Colbert Report from Ash Wednesday - great one-on-one w Arianna Huffington =)

The combination of Colbert's filthy forehead and the recent Nat-Rap video/sketch sparked a search through old files for this quick bit of goofing on a conjunction of film advertising back in Feb of 2002...

- - - - - - - - - - -

...and then it was the time of Space Lent, the critical stage of Jedi training when every padawan must give up dear pleasures and distractions, demonstrating strength of focus and discipline.

That's when Anakin decided that he would go where no moisture farmboy had gone before, and take his Jedi vow:

No anger...
Nor hatred...
Nor love...
Nor sex.
No touching.
Nor kissing.
Nor foreplay.
Nor fooling around.
Nor shooting the womprat.
No nothin!

Who could have known that he would end up being more machine than man?

From the producers of "Beggar's Canyon," "Jedi Blues," and "Padme Jones's
Diary" comes...

A bit clunky, I know - that Hayden pic is all chopped up, distorted, and stitched back together to replace beanpole Hartnett, and the copy could probably use some punching up - but this is what happens in my crossover-wired head when saturated with advertising, y'know?

It was funny in my head, I swear.


Keep on keepin on~

* For a look at the advertising droppings that contributed to this silliness, check out DAYS and KNIGHTS.

Tuesday, March 07, 2006

O, Natalie...

Over post-vball playoffs dinner last night at the Sunset (team "Say My Name" finished second for this session), the always enjoyable topic of Miss Natalie Portman came up. Captain Joshua informed me that there is an a-MAY-Zing video/sketch from the recent SNL she hosted, and it's floating somewhere or wheres on the interweb. Once I got home, I went looking, somewhat lazily, just for obvious links, lest my clicks get me flagged once again w the FBI and the "Portman" estate, but the first few were all already dead. Lucky for me, Josh is more web-knowing and persistent...

Thanks, Josh, for this wonderfully entertaining and maybe a little disturbing look at Natalie P.

Ummm... please, don't read that last sentence out loud.


*sigh* Our little PROFESSIONAL, BEAUTIFUL GIRL... she's all growed up now!

I am SO jonesin for some Wachowski Brothers x Alan Moore goodness in V FOR VENDETTA... The world of the near future is a totalitarian state in which the ministries of the five senses observe and catalog the mis/behavior of its citizens, to punish or exploit to further whatever agenda it may pursue? Bah. Never happen. But, y'know, that's exactly why I go to the movies. Gotta love escapist entertainment! =)

Keep on keepin on~

* Nat photo swiped from


Zorky asked me about DARWIN'S NIGHTMARE, which I picked to win the documentary Oscar. Sad to say, I missed opps to see any of the other nominees. STREET FIGHT was playing at the Brattle the two days before the awards! But with the weekend I had I couldn't motivate to get there. Nuts.

Yeah, I even picked NIGHTMARE over MARCH OF THE PENGUINS. Call me crazy. I just had some odd (non)aftertaste regarding the MARCH after reading some articles/reviews that described how it was being promoted - without any push from the film's creators - as a Christian film, portraying the reflection of Christian family values in the oh-so-cute tuxedo'd wild...

It didn't keep me up at night or anything, but it was enough to keep me from going to experience MARCH on my own, as it seemed that when the opps arose to see it with others, the group mind would go with something more KONG, or SYRIANA, or KISS KISS BANG BANG, or DOOM.

Oh. Ummm... No, that's not quite right.

I had to go see DOOM by myself...

Yeah. I was the one. That was me.

It didn't TO-tally suck.


And on top of the Rock and XENA's Julius Caesar, it featured the woman who plays Lizzy's sister in PRIDE & PREJUDICE. Was a little funny having the afterimage of her DOOMed research scientist role superimposed on the PRIDE experience.

Anyhow, I wanted to fill Zorknapp in on NIGHTMARE and found that I'd put together an email blast pushing it at people back in December when I caught it at the Brattle. So, with a few edits and tweaks, here's my DARWIN'S NIGHTMARE plug from December 2005. Please excuse me for cheating off myself, but hey, don't I get points for recycling?
Looking to get angry and sad and frustrated at the state of the world? Not getting enough bad news from your favorite cable news network? I recommend a dose of "WTF is wrong w the world?" maddening documentary reality in the form of DARWIN'S NIGHTMARE

You will likely hafta look hard to find it in theaters just now, but I'm guessing its Oscar nom should help to bring it back for a while as well as accelerate a U.S. DVD release. It's a heaping helping of that escapism that Oscar MC Jon Stewart said we all seek and love at the movies, in reality form.

Some 50 to 60 years ago, the monstrous Nile Perch was introduced to the ecosystem of Lake Victoria in Africa. DARWIN'S NIGHTMARE ostensibly covers a pretty simply defined issue - the ecological and economic impact this alien life form has had on the area. A relentless predator, it has disturbed the native balance of the lake's wildlife, while at the same time, singlehandedly - singlefinnedly? - enabled the creation of an apparently booming fishing export industry for the lakeside towns and villages of Tanzania.

Really, the documentary bobs and weaves in and out and quite a bit beyond these events...

As a cargo plane awaits its hundreds-of-tons payload of fish for delivery to European dinner tables, the radio news broadcasts a bulletin about international famine relief requested for Tanzania.

Many other planes come and go as this plane sits waiting at the airport. What is their cargo and where is it destined to go?

Parts of the film points up something that FUTURE OF FOOD pushed hard. That there is no immediate food crisis as far as food production vs. population is concerned. The crisis is not in the numbers, in meeting demand, but in access, in price. Big money thrown into production line methods applied to fishing can result in massive yields, but of a product that cannot be afforded by those who work the production line...

Grah. I can't do the subject or the filmmaking decent justice w my rambling ways. Please check out the Brattle's blurb and the Boston Globe's review...

Again, NOT the feel-good movie of the fall, and honestly, the documentary pace may seem slow, but I think it is respectful of the settings and situations of its subjects, and required in the building of its case. The film is very patient with its interviews, its witnesses, and doesn't take any shortcuts or spell anything out for its audience. You figure out who or what Darwin's nightmare actually is. Check it out.

Keep on keepin on~

Monday, March 06, 2006

Oscars post-mortem...

I predicted - well, truly more like *guessed* - the winner in 14 out of 24 2006 Oscar categories, coming up wrongo in most of the "biggies" - oops.

I'm just back from the Brattle's Oscar night, shared with my friend Anna. I'm gonna rattle off whatever comes to mind as I consider how the evening's awards and speeches went...

George Clooney continues to be as cool and sharp as I hope. I was surprised by his win as SYRIANA's Bob for supporting actor, but y'know, the first thing he said in his acceptance speech, only partly in jest I suspect, may explain it, as well as a lot of other awards for the evening... I think it was something like...

"Guess I'm not winning best director..."

I think now that I was wrong to anticipate the academy going for Giamatti, on the basis of an academy "adjustment" for SIDEWAYS. The nomination alone was adjustment enough. If I'd realized that before the awards, I might've imagined the Oscar going to Clooney...

Actually, no. I'd have them give it to Dillon for CRASH.

For fun and entertainment, I want to believe that Jacko went off the reservation there at the end, reading the winner of the Oscar for best picture, y'know? I mean, with that very Jacko reading of the nominees, can't you just see him riding that momentum into picking the winner all on his own?

Not that CRASH doesn't deserve an Oscar, cuz it's an excellent, tight, tantalizing, emotional ride of a movie, with no fat on its incredible interweaved ensemble bones. But something that I've repeatedly heard from movie-concerned friends is that historically, Best Picture and Best Director go together, to the same film.

I will say, if ever there was a good year to break that tradition, this would be it. It seems like almost every film up for something or other at the Oscars this year was a well-executed film as expression of Hollywood with a heart, mind, and conscience.

That might explain the Oscar that Three 6 Mafia walked away with tonight, too. Heh. Damn, but Jon Stewart was right. THOSE GUYS knew how to appreciate winning an Oscar! =)

It all went very smoothly and pretty much on schedule. Jon's dozen or so minutes were all entertaining, his ad libs were very him and on target, but except for three or four remarks, he didn't get too near anything I'd call a sharp edge. He's certainly a better fit w the moviemaking crowd than Chris Rock was, but y'know, he doesn't quite have the chemistry with the awards that Billy Crystal and Steven Martin do.

A "Return to Glamour?" Except for the prom committee's excellent work on the stage and decor, and perhaps the selection of some of the celebrities' dresses, at least in intent, if not in actual execution (Naomi? Looked like she had a dress, until Kong shook her like a rattle?), I didn't really see it...

Is dance interpretation of a nominated song REALLY necessary? The pimps, hos, and johns strutting and kicking and spinning in front of and around Three 6 Mafia did not really do anything for the song. And Lords of Kobol! Why force slow-motion charade re-enactments of scenes from CRASH behind "Bird's" fine performance?

Given those poorly tested choreographic decisions, I'm glad they didn't impose on Dolly to include gender bending dancers backing up her singing. Altho, sad to say, given the apparent work she's had done to preserve and update herself, maybe the producers thought that she was enough of a reinforcement of the film's plot and themes without back-up, eh?

She's a damn fine entertainer.

The best acceptance speech that I can remember now was from the director of TSOTSI. He definitely made the most of his 60(?) seconds. Alas, he tells everyone to go to the TSOTSI site to see his list of people he wants to thank, but I guess he hasn't gotten that update posted just yet.

Oooohhh... nice and sharp unsolicited bust on the Baldwins when Stewart introduced the Wilson brothers, heh.

I think the pit orchestra conductor must have a thing for Reese Witherspoon. She really did go on.

I was a little surprised that Philip Seymour Hoffman was so unprepared for accepting, or so ready to let himself get caught up emotionally that he would seem to ramble more than recite, but I suppose I'm being a bit two-faced criticizing that in him after agreeing with Jon about Three 6 Mafia getting excited and emotional about winning, right?

The live audience at the Brattle was pretty raucous in its support and unforgiving in its derision of a lot of different people, films, and issues. Consistent hisses whenever Tom Cruise showed his face. Some light cheers for the BROKEBACK screenwriters pushing the "culture of the book." Enthusiastic laughs at the send-ups of mudslinging election propaganda as applied to Oscar jockeying.

"Paid for by so-and-so's mom." Heh.

Some pained and hearty laughter at Stewart's jabs at how Hollywood has addressed and tackled tough issues, raising the American moviegoers's consciousness of societal wrongs and struggles, in the past and today, and how succesful their work has been, as all of those problems were solved one by one, thanks to the movies! That also came in a backwards flavor when he lauded Hollywood for daring to make such unflinching, contraversial films this years, and how they know just what we want in escapism - ha! =)

"Stay tuned for our homage to Oscar montages..." Ha. He should've stopped there I think, and not ask for clips on beta. =)

I was really hoping for some reporter-on-the-scene/correspondent reports from DAILY SHOW regulars, but I know, I know, this is the Academy Awards, not THE DAILY SHOW. Foo.

Still, Carell was pretty frickin hilarious, and all he had to do was blink while sporting fake eyelashes.

I did think that some bit of Stewart's monologue might've been leading to a description of BROKEBACK as the set-up for a bait-n-switch with 40 YEAR OLD VIRGIN footage, heh. "You know how I know you're gay?" Alas, not to be.

Late late late. I gotta get some Zs so I can be up in the morning and ready to motor to Natick to drop my car off for some fixin. *sigh*

Keep on keepin on~

Sunday, March 05, 2006

Brattle flashback =)

A comp of a design I submitted to the Brattle for their poster design contest a few years back.

Movie characters were cut out from the largest source images I could find online. Source material favors cinema from Hong Kong over Europe over the U.S. - 2 to 1 to 0. From left to right we've got: IN THE MOOD FOR LOVE, THE BICYCLE THIEF, and HARD BOILED. Good crack. =)

Oscar picks - the list...

Okay, it's gonna take way too long for me to keep on w my bits of exposition as I consider the nominations category by category, so I'm just gonna go down the list as it's presented at the Academy's website (alphabetically, apparently), and mark my Oscar picks (who/what I believe will win the Oscar) with an [O], and cabinboy's (my) personal favorite picks (what I'd vote for based on my own tastes and experiences of the films) with a [C], if different from the Oscar pick.

I'll also indicate in parentheses when I'm just shootin in the dark, or perhaps the dimly lit, and let you know what movies in the category I've seen or not.

Sad to say, I totally missed HOWL'S MOVING CASTLE. How did STEAMBOY not get a nomination for animated feature? That film is steampunkily delicious!

For most of the technical awards, I just on gut went with KING KONG. An amazing immersive technical rollercoaster ride. And man! His Manhattan of the 30s is beautiful!

Art direction I could think and overthink and over-overthink given the nominees, but the simple completeness of the world achieved in GOOD NIGHT comes back to me very strongly, making it my personal fave. Alas, my Academy-guessing brain feels like something more overtly decorative/decorated and designed is what will win, and although I didn't experience it firsthand, I feel that the distance in both time and geography from the modern West will make GEISHA's visual impact, whether authentic or not, the actual Oscar pick over PRIDE and KONG. And on top of that, in a sort of give-and-take strategic call, KING KONG doesn't get this because it should get all the technical categories, even though it's excellent art direction applied to the effects tools that makes them so successful.

If you're curious about the nominated shorts, check out the Coolidge for their Oscar shorts programs running this week.
Performance by an Actor in a Leading Role

[O] __ Philip Seymour Hoffman - CAPOTE
[_ ] __ Terrence Howard - HUSTLE & FLOW
[_ ] __ Heath Ledger - BROKEBACK MOUNTAIN
[_ ] __ Joaquin Phoenix - WALK THE LINE
[C] __ David Strathairn - GOOD NIGHT, AND GOOD LUCK.

Performance by an Actor in a Supporting Role

[_ ] __ George Clooney - SYRIANA
[C] __ Matt Dillon - CRASH
[O] __ Paul Giamatti - CINDERELLA MAN
[_ ] __ Jake Gyllenhaal - BROKEBACK MOUNTAIN
[C] __ William Hurt - A HISTORY OF VIOLENCE

Performance by an Actress in a Leading Role (guess - only seen PRIDE and WALK THE LINE)

[_ ] __ Judi Dench - MRS. HENDERSON PRESENTS
[O] __ Felicity Huffman - TRANSAMERICA
[_ ] __ Keira Knightley - PRIDE & PREJUDICE
[_ ] __ Charlize Theron - NORTH COUNTRY
[_ ] __ Reese Witherspoon - WALK THE LINE

Performance by an Actress in a Supporting Role (mostly guess - haven't seen JUNEBUG or NORTH COUNTRY)

[_ ] __ Amy Adams - JUNEBUG
[_ ] __ Catherine Keener - CAPOTE
[O] __ Frances McDormand - NORTH COUNTRY
[_ ] __ Rachel Weisz - THE CONSTANT GARDENER
[C] __ Michelle Williams - BROKEBACK MOUNTAIN

Best Animated Feature Film of the Year (haven't seen HOWL'S)


Achievement in Art Direction (haven't seen GEISHA)

[_ ] __ KING KONG

Achievement in Cinematography (haven't seen NEW WORLD)


Achievement in Costume Design (sorta guess - haven't seen GEISHA or HENDERSON)


Achievement in Directing

[_ ] __ CAPOTE
[_ ] __ CRASH
[_ ] __ MUNICH

Best Documentary Feature (mostly guess - only seen NIGHTMARE)


Best Documentary Short Subject (guess - seen none of these)


Achievement in Film Editing (haven't seen CINDERELLA)

[O] __ CRASH
[_ ] __ MUNICH

Best Foreign Language Film of the Year (guess - seen none of these)

[_ ] __ Don't Tell
[_ ] __ Joyeux Noël
[O] __ Paradise Now
[_ ] __ Sophie Scholl - The Final Days
[_ ] __ Tsotsi

Achievement in Makeup (haven't seen CINDERELLA)


Achievement in Music Written for Motion Pictures (Original Score) (haven't seen GEISHA)

[_ ] __ MUNICH

Achievement in Music Written for Motion Pictures (Original Song) (guess - only seen CRASH)

[O] __ "In the Deep" from CRASH
[_ ] __ "It's Hard Out Here for a Pimp" from HUSTLE & FLOW
[_ ] __ "Travelin' Thru" from TRANSAMERICA

Best Motion Picture of the Year

[_ ] __ CAPOTE
[_ ] __ CRASH
[_ ] __ MUNICH

Best Animated Short Film (guess - seen none of these)

[_ ] __ BADGERED
[O] __ 9
[_ ] __ ONE MAN BAND

Best Live Action Short Film (guess - seen none of these)

[_ ] __ CASHBACK
[_ ] __ OUR TIME IS UP

Achievement in Sound Editing (haven't seen GEISHA)


Achievement in Sound Mixing (haven't seen GEISHA)


Achievement in Visual Effects


Adapted Screenplay

[_ ] __ CAPOTE
[_ ] __ MUNICH

Original Screenplay (haven't seen MATCH POINT)

[O] __ CRASH
[_ ] __ SYRIANA
I'm a bit curious about how, or how much of, the Academy might vote with politics in mind. Does it MEAN anything if (when) BROKEBACK MOUNTAIN wins it all? I'm sure it'll come up in SOMEone's no-spin zone in some bullet point list knocking the wrong-minded, anti-family, un-American influence of Hollywood, or pop "culture," or "art." Another bogus overstated brushstroke in the attempt to paint the American way of life as being in peril from Godless gays and liberal Hollywood.

And what does it mean to reward GOOD NIGHT, AND GOOD LUCK? Probably not a lot, right? I mean, it's about television news journalists reporting with a conscience, and on the flip side, a cautionary tale of how the medium and industry of television needs to be aware of "Uncle Ben's Razor" - with great power comes great responsibility. It's too bad it's a story that's so hard to understand in this day and age, eh? I mean what does any of that have to do with life in 21st century America...?

And is it significant if movies like these are overlooked? I guess the nominations alone are more than enough recognition. They have and will pump up the exposure for each and every one of the nominated films. Of course, I don't see BROKEBACK not winning the picture and director awards. The performances are solid, but I think in each category there are competitors who delivered more, or are in a situation where the Academy may make a kind of "error correction" a higher priority than head-to-head comparison/competition, a la the notion that Giamatti was overlooked in SIDEWAYS.

Eh, in the end... Whatev. I like what I like. =)

I've never been one to pre-empt my night for the Oscars (except where good company figured prominently =), or any awards show, but I do have to admit I'm keen on seeing what John Stewart will bring to the evening. Also this year, I'm gonna be hitting the Brattle's Oscar party/screening. Should be JUST the right crowd to appreciate a Stewart-emceed Academy Awards show!

Please, no live music from Antonio Banderas this year...

I saw this question in an Oscars poll/survey earlier this week - Who do you think will be the "Sean Penn" of this year's Oscars?

I think it'll be Sean Penn. =)

Once BROKEBACK wins its Oscars, do you think the prez will watch it? Or at least, admit to it?

Keep on keepin on~

Friday, March 03, 2006

getting LOST w Jackie...

End-o-day be-boppin on this week's LOST with Jackie...

Friday, March 3, 2006

4:15:45 PM jackie: ok so another topic
4:15:54 PM jackie: sort of brazen of me but i am going to throw it out there
4:16:02 PM cabinboy: braze away
4:16:09 PM jackie: i think this weeks ep of lost was one of the most important YET
4:16:17 PM jackie: jill was all, whoa
4:16:21 PM jackie: when i said that to her
4:16:37 PM jackie: did you watch it?
4:16:53 PM cabinboy: yup i saw it
4:17:04 PM jackie: the others are a goddam farce!
4:17:12 PM cabinboy: yeah, frickin annoying
4:17:22 PM jackie: seriously? wtf????
4:17:33 PM jackie: scary pirate man?
4:17:43 PM jackie: not so scary when he is all LL Bean'ed out and showered up
4:18:01 PM jackie: i feel used
4:18:02 PM cabinboy: i gotta say tho, as annoyed as i am for being duped
4:18:11 PM cabinboy: it was neat seeing scary pirate all clean shaven
4:18:14 PM jackie: oh totes
4:18:15 PM jackie: but still
4:18:24 PM cabinboy: i'm really kinda angry at myself for gettin sucked in like that
4:18:26 PM jackie: i was mad for some reason
4:18:28 PM jackie: ha
4:18:30 PM cabinboy: =)
4:18:41 PM cabinboy: yeah, well, it's a pretty high order hoax played on us
4:18:41 PM jackie: i was all out scared of the frickin guy
4:19:00 PM jackie: i am like some dumbdumb kid on halloween scared of a man in a costume
4:19:07 PM cabinboy: interesting tho, that kate keeps that to herself - it's hard to remember exactly who of the group knows how much sometimes
4:19:10 PM cabinboy: haha
4:19:16 PM cabinboy: yeah, true
4:19:19 PM cabinboy: an actOR
4:19:22 PM jackie: yes that is where this is gonna get interesting
4:19:26 PM jackie: what they bring back to the group
4:19:32 PM jackie: what claire does
4:19:36 PM jackie: or actually you know what?
4:19:36 PM cabinboy: kinda sad, Rousseau
4:19:40 PM jackie: claire has never seen scary pirate man
4:19:45 PM cabinboy: ha, right
4:19:45 PM jackie: oh but kate has
4:19:46 PM jackie: crap
4:19:47 PM jackie: sorry
4:19:55 PM jackie: so she knows the beard, blah blah
4:20:00 PM cabinboy: yeah, kate would recognize the beard for what it is
4:20:00 PM jackie: i am getting too excited
4:20:02 PM jackie: yeah
4:20:21 PM jackie: oh i really felt bad for her
4:20:33 PM cabinboy: interesting that they left that there, but makes sense, too, cuz they couldn't know that claire would go all repressed memories
4:20:34 PM jackie: but at the same time claire gave her some comfort
4:20:39 PM jackie: her daughter is ALIVE
4:20:48 PM jackie: yeah exactly
4:20:59 PM cabinboy: they probably exPECTed them to find the place within a day or so of her escape - yeah Rousseau's daughter being alive is pretty neat
4:21:02 PM jackie: they left very select items tho
4:21:08 PM jackie: the bootie
4:21:25 PM jackie: see that kind of thing, something a mother made for a child, could almost TRIGGER memories
4:21:26 PM cabinboy: the savage costumes and the box of props...
4:21:30 PM jackie: like maybe thy want her to remember
4:21:33 PM cabinboy: ah, the bootie
4:21:35 PM jackie: lol
4:22:22 PM cabinboy: i wanted more weird dharma stuff
4:22:27 PM jackie: oh yeah
4:22:32 PM jackie: well we saw the insignia a few times
4:22:33 PM cabinboy: that f'd up alarm sound
4:22:38 PM jackie: yeah, experiement stuff
4:22:47 PM cabinboy: yeah, i was hoping for a SYMBOL like when the clock went to 00000
4:22:53 PM jackie: oh geeze
4:23:03 PM jackie: i don't know if i could have handled that last night
4:23:04 PM jackie: too much at once
4:23:07 PM cabinboy: haha
4:23:08 PM jackie: i mean i am only human
4:23:13 PM cabinboy: are you? are you REALLY?
4:23:16 PM jackie: ha
4:23:31 PM cabinboy: as you rip off your beard
4:23:35 PM cabinboy: oh wait, you don't have a beard
4:23:37 PM cabinboy: scratch that
4:23:50 PM jackie: muahahahahahaha
4:23:51 PM jackie: evil laugh
4:23:55 PM cabinboy: hahahaha =)
4:24:43 PM cabinboy: some stuff... maybe important, maybe just consistency...
4:24:56 PM jackie: k
4:24:57 PM cabinboy: that pirate guy scolds ethon for not bringing a LIST before bringing in claire
4:24:58 PM jackie: bring it
4:25:04 PM jackie: hmm
4:25:07 PM jackie: the manifest?
4:25:12 PM cabinboy: presumably the list of "good people"
4:25:13 PM jackie: or the list that the other other had to take the children
4:25:16 PM jackie: ah ok
4:25:31 PM cabinboy: which is what someone tells the tailies the Others are after - that's who they kidnapped the first night - the Good ones
4:25:48 PM cabinboy: that flashed thru my head when Mr. Echo goes to confess to the prisoner guy
4:25:54 PM jackie: oh yeah
4:26:14 PM cabinboy: the Mr. Echo is supposedly one of the Good ones... innocent? pure? genetically special?
4:26:22 PM jackie: wait so this would have been a separate list - good ones from jack's crew?
4:26:31 PM jackie: um, genetically is a stretch i think
4:26:34 PM cabinboy: yeah, that's what i'm guessing from what we've seen
4:26:43 PM jackie: but yes, he is the embodiment of rightousness
4:26:45 PM cabinboy: altho, they knew who was good and not good by the first night w the tailes
4:26:59 PM jackie: yeah well that camp was infiltrated first
4:27:03 PM jackie: right at the crash
4:27:09 PM cabinboy: but then, after watching the pilot last week - jack's crew was busy w the beast the first night
4:27:10 PM jackie: by that man with the vest
4:27:13 PM jackie: oh yeah
4:27:16 PM jackie: OH YEAH
4:27:17 PM jackie: hmmm
4:27:29 PM cabinboy: so the Others and the beast aren't in the same place at the same time
4:27:46 PM cabinboy: apparently
4:28:03 PM jackie: omg
4:28:11 PM jackie: that could speak volumes
4:28:17 PM jackie: in theory
4:28:34 PM cabinboy: hrmm.... you ever see FORBIDDEN PLANET?
4:28:39 PM cabinboy: old school scifi flick
4:28:42 PM jackie: nope
4:29:07 PM cabinboy: a scientist is stranded on a planet with a lot of ancient alien hardware
4:29:19 PM jackie: ok
4:29:23 PM cabinboy: and he learns out to use it and enhance his mind
4:29:29 PM cabinboy: unlocking parts of it tha thumans can't usually access
4:29:53 PM cabinboy: and it helps him survive on the planet, making him smarter and able to bring a garden forth from a desert, and learn more about the other technology
4:30:01 PM jackie: ok
4:30:03 PM cabinboy: however, it also gives shape to his subconscious, apparently without his knowing
4:30:48 PM cabinboy: and when other humans arrive, all these beneath the surface emotions are fed into this
4:30:53 PM cabinboy: creating a monster
4:31:14 PM cabinboy: the scientist has a daughter, and the new humans are all studly guys
4:31:25 PM cabinboy: so there's all kindsa conflict and protection and territory stuff goin on there
4:32:02 PM cabinboy: i wonder about the inky cloud being a manifestation of the subsonscious someone, or several someones - children?
4:32:14 PM jackie: wait when the new ppl arrive they feed his altered subconcious?
4:32:51 PM cabinboy: you hafta use the machine to affect the creature
4:32:57 PM jackie: ah
4:33:16 PM cabinboy: but the scientist prevents them from using it - presumably, if they did, they could create or change the "attitude" of the creature
4:33:42 PM jackie: so is scary pirate man AWARE of the inky black thing,
4:33:48 PM jackie: and perhaps trying to protect it?
4:33:50 PM cabinboy: i just feel like so much of what happens on the island is a wish fulfillment thing
4:34:07 PM cabinboy: dreams, or subconscious desires or fears, made real
4:34:32 PM cabinboy: yeah, pirate guy and crew... they've got some kind of connection...
4:34:35 PM jackie: ok so wait then - what is the 'infection' that has been discussed
4:34:45 PM cabinboy: maybe they need to appease it with kids' brains
4:34:48 PM jackie: losing ownership of all those fears and dreams
4:35:36 PM jackie: because kids' brains are the most concentrated form of 'purity'
4:35:52 PM cabinboy: rousseau's "infection".... i dunno... she seems to think claire's baby really is infected somehow, physically sick, right?
4:36:07 PM cabinboy: yeah, they might keep it calm somehow
4:36:11 PM jackie: well her crew mates that she had to kill went stir crazy
4:36:16 PM cabinboy: oh, right
4:36:18 PM jackie: it was a mental thing
4:36:25 PM cabinboy: so they couldn't tell the difference between real and not real
4:36:29 PM jackie: well,
4:36:33 PM cabinboy: perhaps
4:36:36 PM jackie: actually maybe
4:36:42 PM jackie: if they start seeing their personal fears
4:36:57 PM jackie: if that thing manifests in diff forms for diff ppl
4:36:59 PM cabinboy: they became dangerous - paranoid, maybe - i mean, rousseau might be called that too, but she got to the guns first
4:37:18 PM cabinboy: maybe her worst fear was her crew going crazy
4:37:22 PM jackie: omg
4:37:23 PM jackie: nice
4:37:24 PM cabinboy: and losing her baby
4:37:29 PM jackie: oh shit and she made that come true
4:37:48 PM jackie: well claire's worst fear now is being separated from that baby
4:37:50 PM cabinboy: which makes me wonder - what if someone WANTS the others to be a sham
4:38:06 PM cabinboy: and those "costumes" sorta materialized in those lockers to make it real
4:38:09 PM jackie: jack wants them to be so that sayid is wrong with henry gale
4:38:14 PM cabinboy: ahhh
4:38:26 PM cabinboy: but damn, gale IS a manipulating sombich
4:38:29 PM jackie: but those costumes are tangible
4:38:45 PM jackie: i mean, when we were talking about that black horse and kate
4:39:06 PM jackie: that could have been some sort of apparition
4:39:12 PM cabinboy: yeah... there are real, physical manifestations - Walt's a "special" boy -
4:39:12 PM jackie: but i feel like that was diff
4:39:18 PM jackie: exactly
4:39:58 PM cabinboy: it's interesting tho - pay attention to how often you see a person's eye close-up, just opening, waking, perhaps
4:40:05 PM cabinboy: and maybe the pupil dialates
4:40:05 PM jackie: ok let's back up for like half a second here
4:40:09 PM cabinboy: dunno if it happens all the time
4:40:10 PM cabinboy: okay
4:40:28 PM jackie: WHY would scary pirate man want them to be viewed as a tribe of dirty people in tattered clothes
4:40:40 PM jackie: to mask the sophistication of the effort?
4:41:03 PM jackie: i mean, out on the boat when they took walth
4:41:04 PM cabinboy: hrmm... yeah, to make the castaways think they're not that technological
4:41:05 PM jackie: -h
4:41:18 PM jackie: so this brings this whole thing back to SCIENCE
4:41:22 PM jackie: and not the paranormal
4:41:31 PM cabinboy: not necessarily mutually exclusive
4:41:36 PM jackie: i think that is why i was disappointed
4:41:38 PM jackie: eh true
4:41:46 PM cabinboy: what dharma was working on - could be esp type research
4:41:47 PM jackie: science trying to harness/appease the paranomral
4:42:21 PM cabinboy: or who knows, some f'd up teleporter (altho that doesn't FEEL like the LOST universe) that opens a gate to somewhere other than our dimension
4:42:34 PM cabinboy: there's some quirky fringe science out there
4:43:13 PM cabinboy: i can't remember the terms and language, but some scientific types have pretty recently come up with a notion that there is code, like programming, that defines the universe we experience
4:43:23 PM cabinboy: and hypothesize that it could be possible to re-write that code
4:43:36 PM jackie: so the lost island is a playground for that?
4:43:36 PM cabinboy: what that technology looks like - no idea
4:43:43 PM cabinboy: could very well be
4:44:06 PM cabinboy: i mean, that kind of thing could change the laws of physics in a confined area
4:44:56 PM jackie: oh totally
4:45:05 PM jackie: so they really are mice
4:45:06 PM jackie: lab mice
4:46:08 PM cabinboy: i think that dreams and dreaming are important to what's going on
4:46:15 PM cabinboy: almost guaranteed I think, when any of the characters gets tired, stuff happens, or they "see" something
4:46:30 PM jackie: dreams are the subconcsious, which is an extension of ourselves
4:46:40 PM cabinboy: or maybe not just tired, but in altered state, sleepy, shock
4:46:48 PM cabinboy: kate sees the horse
4:46:51 PM cabinboy: jack sees his dad
4:47:28 PM cabinboy: shannon sees walt, but maybe walt was actually reaching out
4:47:34 PM jackie: they gave claire something that made her permanently in that sate
4:47:35 PM jackie: state
4:48:00 PM cabinboy: yeah, that was pretty f'd up - her being all pleased as punch with ethon
4:48:09 PM jackie: yeah felt dirty
4:48:15 PM cabinboy: ha- totally!
4:48:31 PM jackie: but they created that comfort
4:48:52 PM cabinboy: and hey - wish fulfillment - maybe the island reached back in time and MADE echo's brother's plane crash there after echo got to the island
4:49:00 PM jackie: oh crap
4:49:15 PM cabinboy: and w charlie there - the heroin - two birds one stone
4:49:20 PM jackie: well the other thing with the plane is i am thinking of the heroin as charlies manifestation of his biggest fear
4:49:23 PM jackie: being a junkie
4:49:29 PM cabinboy: totally
4:49:30 PM jackie: oh crap we are totally on the same page with that
4:49:33 PM cabinboy: these personal challenges
4:49:36 PM cabinboy: locke seems to believe it
4:49:40 PM cabinboy: that the island will provide
4:49:43 PM cabinboy: the island will tell them what to do
4:49:45 PM jackie: that is an example of the intertwined nature of the experieces too
4:50:14 PM cabinboy: i was pretty amazed at sawyer meeting jack's dad in that bar in australia
4:50:27 PM jackie: oh i am amazed at all of them
4:50:28 PM cabinboy: jack gets to hear what he needs to hear
4:50:42 PM jackie: oh yeah thats true - that fulfilled something for him
4:50:51 PM cabinboy: and sawyer's the agent of it
4:50:52 PM jackie: more powerful than the other near encounters
4:50:58 PM jackie: but they are always at odds
4:51:41 PM cabinboy: made it more powerful i think - amazing intertwining
4:51:50 PM cabinboy: what up w DESMOND?
4:51:55 PM jackie: where the f is he?
4:51:57 PM cabinboy: did the island reach back and pull him in?
4:52:05 PM jackie: yeah, extract him from the experiment
4:52:33 PM cabinboy: ah, frack - phone brb