22 May 2005, 06:51

Star Wars Episode 3

Revenge of the Sith may have been the story of Anakin Skywalker’s fall to the dark side, but thankfully it was something of a redemption for George Lucas. After seeing it tonight, I can almost forgive him for episodes 1 and 2. The movie was good, actually really good. Good enough to end the Star Wars cycle with some measure of dignity, which until now I wouldn’t have thought possible. It was suprising what a sense of closure it gave, even considering the fact that it ends on a darker note than even Empire Strikes Back. Even though you know everything that’s going to happen in this movie, and have known for years, after actually seeing it it really makes you think about parts of the original trilogy in a new light. I forced Jolayne to go see it with me (hey, she knew what she was getting into when she married me) and even though she had been convinced that she would be bored to death, she ended up loving it. She even wants to rewatch the original trilogy now. She’s never seen episodes 1 and 2, but I don’t see any reason to go and ruin things with that. So at any rate, I would say that episode 3 was just about as good of an end middle to the Star Wars series as I could have hoped for.

05 Sep 2004, 07:15

Super Secret Movie Trivia for Nerds

On the DVD of The Ring in one of the scenes that was cut from the theatrical version, the babysitter is shown watching a few seconds of the first episode of Aqua Teen Hunger Force (“Rabbot“). I just noticed that, and as you can tell, am quite proud of myself and felt like sharing. Perhaps that’s already common knowledge, but I’d be surprised. Feel free to use the above fun fact to impress and amaze at parties, sporting events, and parole hearings.


Comment by Posko on 2004-09-08 19:39:06 +0000

I used that little tidbit at a get-together and was set on fire. Thanks Will!

27 Jun 2004, 08:19

“Good for business, bad for the people”

Tonight I registered to vote for the very first time. That I did so in a movie theatre immediately before seeing Fahrenheit 911 should give a pretty good indication of my motives for doing so. After seeing the movie, all I can say is: WTF GWB. Seriously. I mean, Michael Moore obviously made the film to convey a point and as such I’m sure there are things that were slanted toward that point. Still if even half of the material in the film is true as it was presented, well it’s just sad to think about. The film didn’t really influence my existing political views but it did convince me to finally lose my apathy regarding voting and that’s got to be a good thing.


Comment by Phil on 2004-06-27 10:49:44 +0000

Yeah, when we went Friday night, our theatre was sold out. For a DOCUMENTARY, of all things. I wasn’t surprised when I read in the news yesterday that it had taken $8 mil in ONE DAY.

I didn’t think it was as well put together as “Bowling for Columbine,” but it did its job. I think any film is supposed to make people think and talk about what they’ve seen, and I don’t think any summer blockbuster with lots of ‘splosions is going to do that.

Comment by Will on 2004-06-27 22:55:39 +0000

I’m not exactly sure how I’d place this amongst his other work. It’s rather different in that he steps back and spends a lot less time on screen and just lets the material do the talking. Less wacky, flippant, confrontational bits (the PATRIOT act reading from the ice cream truck was really the only piece like that) which I think is good because that kind of thing would have distracted from the message. So while it was kind of lacking in the juxtapositions and zingers that he usually deals in, I don’t know if I’d say that makes it not as good of a film.

Comment by Carrie on 2004-07-13 22:36:48 +0000

It’s great that you registered to vote, but it makes me sad that it took you so long.

16 May 2004, 17:10


If you had told me prior to last night that a movie featuring Ben Stiller, Jack Black, and Christopher Walken could be so completely and thoroughly mediocre as Envy, I probably wouldn’t have believed you. But, as Jolayne and I found out last night, I’d be wrong and you’d be right. It had a few scattered bits of moderate funny, but mostly in just a quick gag or two. Nothing about the plot or characters was really that memorable or funny and in the last 5 minutes or so seemed to stop trying entirely. As a side note, I don’t know why all movies with Christopher Walken don’t contain the credit “…and starring Christopher Walken as himself” because let’s face it that’s pretty much what he does. Not that I don’t appreciate it. The bright side of the whole thing is that we saw a trailer for Napoleon Dynamite that we pretty much laughed straight through. That looks like its going to be the most friggin’ sweet nerd movie ever.


Comment by Carrie on 2004-05-16 18:42:12 +0000

Yay! I can’t wait to see Napoleon Dynamite!

Hm … seems like we should wait for video to check out Envy.

24 Apr 2004, 06:47

Someday, I’m telling you, they’ll make a memory machine

Finally got around to seeing Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind with Jolayne tonight, and not a moment too soon as it was only playing at one theater in the area anymore. Excellent film, made me wish I’d taken some cognitive science classes while I was in school. I just find it interesting, to try and imagine how we store data and even more interesting how we index and retrieve it. I’m betting I’m just using a CMap or some other piece of MFC garbage. That would explain a lot. (See, that’s me for you. Not that I didn’t appreciate the love and loss components of the film, but ultimately it left me thinking about hacking the brain) Anyway, back to the film. It was pretty much what you’d expect from a film with a screenplay by Charlie Kaufman and directed by Michel Gondry (and that’s not a bad thing at all). Quirky plot that often folds back in on itself, matched up with visuals that could have come from a Björk video. I thought the bit with Elijah Wood’s character was a little under-developed and never really resolved, but Jim Carrey and Kate Winslet were excellent. Watching their relationship play out in reverse and slowly slip away was fascinating due to all the different subtle (and not so subtle) methods the film used to portray the loss of memories. Also nice: a bit part by David Cross.

[Listening to: The Dismemberment Plan – Memory Machine]


Comment by Carrie on 2004-04-24 11:46:44 +0000

That was David Cross! I totally didn’t recognize him.

Great movie eh? 😀 Glad ya liked it!

30 Mar 2004, 06:56

I know, I know. Enough with the zombies already.

Ok this is going to be my last zombie related post for a while, really. I just wanted to point out that the original Night of the Living Dead is available in its entirety, for free, over at the Internet Archive. Apparently, when the film was first distributed there was a mistake made and the copyright notice was left off of the film, which meant it entered the public domain and George Romero never saw dime one for it. Raw deal for him, free movie for you. (via BoingBoing)

[Listening to: Danielson Famile – Smooth Death]


Comment by Carrie on 2004-03-30 22:15:40 +0000


23 Mar 2004, 06:16

Best. Headline. Ever.

Zombies Push Jesus from Top of North American Box Office. Now see, that’s one of those combinations of words that you never thought you’d see in the English language, much less coming from a respected international news service. And yet, there it is. Meanwhile, I’m now eagerly anticipating the release of “Shaun of the Dead”, which looks like its going to be a fairly clever and entirely British zombie comedy. (trailer here). It looks like it opens in the UK on April 9th, but I’m not sure when it will be released over here.

[Listening to: Cafe Tacuba – Cero y Uno]


Comment by Brett on 2004-03-23 05:06:04 +0000

100% agreement.

Comment by Neal on 2004-03-25 23:54:22 +0000

Jesus and zombies also both have that “risen from the dead” thing going on. I think Jesus has a better attitude about it though.

Comment by Tobin on 2004-03-26 07:21:18 +0000

Hey, you’re blogging again. Good for you, I’ve been waiting. Now I feel bad that I only just noticed.

20 Mar 2004, 08:16

Uh… Brains?

As most people who know me are aware, I loves me a good zombie apocalype. So given that a remake of Dawn of the Dead was released today, it’s none too surprising that I immediately went to see it. (Jolayne’s out of town on a cruise with her mom and grandmother for her mom’s birthday, so she lucked out of getting dragged along by my zombie mania.) Also not very surprising is that this was not a “good movie” by the standards that one would use to label a “good movie” (i.e. The Royal Tennenbaums, lets say). However, it was very satisfying. You see, there were shotguns. Also, it was great to see zombie mobs of a more epic scale than I’d ever seen previously. I’m just not sure though if I’d say it was a good remake or not…

I definitely still prefer the original. First of all, zombies should not, under any circumstances, be able to run. Danny Boyle got cut some slack because his movie didn’t technically contain zombies. (which also brings up the point that this film borrowed way too heavily from 28 Days Later, right down to the shaky DV cam footage) I think part of the appeal of the zombie is that they’re the underdog of the horror genre. They’re slow and stupid and you wouldn’t think they would be a threat, but they’re relentless. Mark my words, they’ll kill every last one of us. We don’t need hip, edgy, athletic zombies for the new millennium. I like my zombies shuffling and sluggish thank you very much. Secondly, the original was much more relevant for its time, setting the movie in a shopping mall at a time when the indoor shopping mall was just really starting to appear everywhere in America. It made some good and not necessarily subtle zombie/mindless consumer comparisons. In 2004, you’re not really saying anything by fending off a zombie hoard from within a shopping mall, especially if you don’t even manage to take one cheap shot at Starbucks. I did however, find the standard “any similarity to persons living or dead is a coincidence, blah, blah, blah” disclaimer during the end credits to be ironically amusing given the subject matter. But look at me, sitting here and analyzing a zombie film of all things. Now that’s just ridiculous.


Comment by Carrie on 2004-03-20 12:39:24 +0000

Athletic Zombies. That’d be a great name for a band.


Comment by Dan on 2004-03-21 17:51:54 +0000

A friend and I decided to keep holy the Sabbath and see a matinee showing today. As I haven’t seen too many zombie flicks, I can’t make any comparisons, but I did like some of the cinematography. For example, in the very beginning, when Ana careens into the bathroom and slams into the shower. That was incredibly violent and realistic. I also liked how there really wasn’t much cheesy “bonding” of the survivors, and most of them died anyways.

In short, not much of the happy-ending, warm feeling crap-cliche-quiche that Hollywood usually serves us.

Comment by Daniel Thill on 2004-03-27 13:12:21 +0000

This guy shares your love for the undead.

Wait. That didn’t sound quite right…..


13 Mar 2004, 21:45

Starsky & Zzzz…

Last night Jolayne and I went to see Starsky & Hutch, which was pretty mediocre. There were a few funny parts here and there, but overall it was just not that great and short on laughs. Chuckles, yes. But, considering that it had Ben Stiller, Owen Wilson, Vince Vaughn, and the director of Old School, I really would have expected more from it. So while that was less than satisfying, the good thing about yesterday was that I did manage to score a memory upgrade for my machine at work. Now I can continue to support my memory hogging development lifestyle. Apparently, all I had to do was walk down to the tech shop and ask for it. Who knew?


Comment by Dan on 2004-03-13 16:05:07 +0000

You haven’t seen your next pay stub, have you? :)

Comment by Will on 2004-03-13 21:21:10 +0000

Very funny. Although now that you mention it, I’m not sure if I’d put it past them.

Comment by Phil on 2004-03-13 23:25:20 +0000

Hey, I liked Starsky & Hutch, but that was just me. You gotta admit: Snoop Dogg was a great bit of casting…

Comment by Ash on 2004-03-15 20:37:50 +0000

I knew :)

BTW, I TOLD you Starsky & Hutch would suck!

07 Mar 2004, 20:12


Jolayne and I spent the day in Lawrence, KS yesterday, which is home to the University of Kansas. It was fun to spend some time back in a college town, though it did kind of make us feel just a little bit old. Well, maybe more me than her. It hasn’t been a full year yet since she’s graduated, but I’ve been out of school for 2 years now, which seems hard to believe. We stopped by an art museum on the KU campus and then spent the rest of the afternoon just walking around all the stores on the main street through downtown Lawrence. I picked up one of those old-timey Guinness ad posters, which I now need to find a frame for. We ate dinner at Zen Zero, which was really good but I don’t know if I liked it as much as Lulu’s here in KC. After all that we ended the evening by seeing Monster at a theatre there.

All in all, a good film and about as cheery and uplifting as you’d expect a movie about a serial killing prostitute to be. I’d never really thought much about Charlize Theron one way or the other, but I’d say that her academy award for this was well earned. Her performance made the character simultaneously sympathetic and repulsive, and I’d say that being able to evoke any sympathy at all given the nature of the crimes involved is pretty impressive. From what I read though about the actual story on which this was based, they were actually fairly kind in how they portrayed the events surrounding the killings. I guess that’s just movies for you though.


Comment by Carrie on 2004-03-07 17:25:25 +0000

Hm … I figured they gave Charlize Theron the Oscar for managing to get the audience to forget she’s amazingly beautiful in real life.

Phil and I gotta come visit just so we can check out Lulu’s … looks like a great place!

Comment by Will on 2004-03-07 17:48:54 +0000

Lulu’s is awesome! If you and Phil come out here, I will totally promise to take you guys there.

Comment by Carrie on 2004-03-08 19:00:23 +0000