Wednesday, September 28, 2005

Good Quote

This quote's been going through my head all morning and I'm not quite sure why, but here it is. From "The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee"- The Musical:

“I keep thinking how if you take the “W” from answer, the “H” from ghost, the “A” from aardvark, and the “T” from listen, you could keep saying ‘What’ but no one would ever hear you because the whole word would be silent."

Image ©2005, The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee


Michael Wittenberg, Bernadette Peters' Husband, Killed in Crash

I was going through my daily routine read news/gossip on the web and was shocked to hear about this. My condolences go out to Ms. Peters, who had found the one for her and now had him so tragically ripped away.

Tuesday, September 27, 2005

You've Got To Be Carefully Taught

So, a couple weekends ago, I went to a comic convention with my friend coquettecutie and I found a slew of old Olivia Newton-John television specials and old television shows I hadn't seen or heard of since I was a little tyke. I also grabbed a DVD of old politically incorrect cartoons from the 30s & 40s that included the oft-talked about "Coal Black and De Sebben Dwarves" amongst other toons made during WW2, so the stereotype factor was v. v. high.

I have to say while watching these, I found some of them are quite good. Tight storytelling, great music, wonderful animation- the classic Looney Tunes structure. Yes, taken outside of their historical/educational context they can be viewed as incendiary, but I'm pretty glad I found this.

Plus, I've always heard that Coal Black was the *best* cartoon short ever made so I wanted to see it. IMO, it's not *the* best, but it's up there.

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So, went to see Serenity last night... and all's I got to say is

W O W.

When the show went off the air, Joss Whedon was reported heartbroken because every aspect of 'Firefly' just came together and gelled. Well, his passion for that cast and universe was palpable in this movie. This comes across as a grittier Star Wars with no aliens and less fantasy aspects.

It was great to see the cast back together and interacting the way they did in the television series. I think it also works fairly well if one isn't familiar with the series either, due to quite a bit of exposition in the first 15 minutes. Honestly, that was the only time in the film where I got a little squirmy, since I already knew the backstory. Once we got past all that, it was a helluva ride.

I said this to someone earlier this morning and I'll say it again. I think that this'll make some serious duckets this weekend simply because it's a well-crafted escapist film (shoot, I'll probably see it again just to make sure it has a big opening weekend), but, if it fails to ignite then this is a fitting ending to an excellent television series. In typical Whedon fashion, alot of thigns happen at the climax and some things are genuinely shocking and moving. I ain't saying anymore so as to spoil it, but it's also a wonderful beginning for a movie franchise, too.


Monday, September 26, 2005

It's Today!

"Serenity's" sneak preview is tonight!

I don't think I demonstrated how excited I am about this movie. It comes close to Star Wars how much I enjoy these characters and stories. Joss Whedon, IMO, reached a nadir with this series when he got this cast and crew together for the television show and I do have high hopes that the good juju will carry over into this film.

More later...


Sunday, September 25, 2005

Since I've Found Serenity...

"Joss Whedon, the Oscar® - and Emmy - nominated writer/director responsible for the worldwide television phenomena of BUFFY THE VAMPIRE, ANGEL and FIREFLY, now applies his trademark compassion and wit to a small band of galactic outcasts 500 years in the future in his feature film directorial debut, Serenity. The film centers around Captain Malcolm Reynolds, a hardened veteran (on the losing side) of a galactic civil war, who now ekes out a living pulling off small crimes and transport-for-hire aboard his ship, Serenity. He leads a small, eclectic crew who are the closest thing he has left to family –squabbling, insubordinate and undyingly loyal."

I've been a huge fan of Joss Whedon's "Firefly" series while it aired (intermittently) on Fox (and while Fox gave it a slow pointless death), and found a new appreciation of it when the series was released on DVD a while ago. I honestly think that it's one of the best things Joss ever created (Angel would be my favorite- sorry Buffy) with some wonderful character interaction, of course, great dialogue and some fun special effects.

Well, now the wait is over, this week marks the opening of SERENITY- the film version of the tv show (thank those wonderful people at Universal for breathing new life into this story).

I'm slated to sneak the movie tomorrow, so I'll give my non-spoiler) review afterwards. This fanboy is PSYCHED!


Friday, September 23, 2005

The Movie In My Mind

I've been tracking the theatrical release films I watch this year on the home theater forum as a way to actually gauge how many movies I see in a year and rate them accordingly. It's pretty surprising. To wit:

9/3- The Brothers Grimm **1/2
9/18- Just Like Heaven 1/2*

8/1- Charlie & The Chocolate Factory ****
8/9- Must Love Dogs **
8/12- The Aristocrats ***
8/15- The Fantastic Four *1/2
8/19- The 40-Year Old Virgin ***
8/20- Red Eye **1/2
8/28- Junebug **1/2

7/1- War Of The Worlds (2005) ****
7/2- March Of The Penguins ***
7/3- Land Of The Dead **1/2
7/8- Sisterhood Traveling Pants ****
7/15- Cinderella Man ****
7/16- Star Wars Ep 3: ROTS ****
Happy Endings **1/2
7/17- Charlie & The Chocolate Factory ****
7/22- Bad News Bears (2005) ***
7/24- Murderball ****
7/26- Wedding Crashers ***
7/30- Me & You & Everyone We Know 1/2* - it was pathetic

6/3- Crash (2005) ****
6/5- Madagascar **1/2
6/6- Howl's Moving Castle *****
6/11- Mr. & Mrs. Smith ***
6/18- Howl's Moving Castle (2nd time) *****
Batman Begins *****
6/26- Mysterious Skin ***

5/7- Hitchhiker's Guide (again) ***
5/10- Kingdom Of Heaven **1/2
5/19 & 5/20- Star Wars Episode 3: Revenge Of The Sith (3 times) ****
5/25- The Sea Inside ***
5/30- Ocean's Twelve **

4/2- Sin City ****
Fever Pitch **1/2
4/8- Beauty Shop 1/2*
4/24- The Interpreter ***
4/26- Hitchhiker's Guide To The Galaxy ***1/2

3/1- Be Cool **1/2
3/4- The Merchant of Venice (2004) *
3/6- Inside Deep Throat ***
3/7- Millions ****
(this time with a Danny Boyle Q&A after)
3/12- Robots **1/2
3/19- Bride & Prejudice ****

2/5- The Life Aquatic With Steve Zissou ***
2/6- The Wedding Date **
2/18- Being Julia ***
2/21- Constantine * 1/2
2/23- Millions ****
2/26- Hitch ***

1/7- A Very Long Engagement *** 1/2
1/15- In Good Company ****
1/16- Bad Education *****
1/21- The Aviator **** 1/2
1/23- In Good Company ****
Closer **
1/28- Million Dollar Baby ***