The Best Part of I’m Still Here

01/28/2011

Having heard much about Casey Affleck’s fauxumentary about Joaquin Phoenix’s transformation from actor to hip hop star, I felt I was prepared to finally see I’m Not Here with a firm attitude of “Yeah, Right.” I have to say the final product is at times hilarious, flat, annoying, brilliant, and insightful. But hands-down, my favorite part is when Edward James Olmos confers with our hapless hero to offer him some advice. The scene involves a cut where Joaquin ostensibly and silently offers up his latest rhyme as Olmos’ words flow over it.

That’s you, drops of water and you’re on top of the mountain of success. But one day you start sliding down the mountain and you think wait a minute; I’m a mountain top water drop. I don’t belong in this valley, this river, this low dark ocean with all these drops of water. Then one day it gets hot and you slowly evaporate into air, way up, higher than any mountain top, all the way to the heavens. Then you understand that it was at your lowest that you were closest to God. Life’s a journey that goes round and round and the end is closest to the beginning. So if it’s change you need, relish the journey.

Then he tells “JP” that when the spotlights are on him, the inner light can’t be seen; it can only be illuminated during the dark times.

I’m not sure, but I’d bet that was scripted. Like the whole faux thing, an exposition of fame crafted by Phoenix and Affleck. But damn, it’s good.


2010 Movies: Best and Worst

01/03/2011

I really don’t like to admit to feelings like this, but 2010 was quite a disappointing year in cinema. At first I could only think of two movies I saw in theaters that I’d consider awesome; like they would still be as enjoyable in ten or twenty years. But I managed to remember three others to round out a top five, yet passionately submit another top five of the biggest disappointments.

My Favorite Theatrical Experiences of 2010

5. Scott Pilgrim vs. the World

via IFC

It’s completely ridiculous, and simultaneously awesome. As someone who grew up playing video games in arcades, it really bounces off my sensibilities well. It helps that I, unlike some of my friends, actually like Michael Cera’s style.

4. Toy Story 3

Pixar/Disney

Do I really need to write anything about this definitive conclusion to the super-successful Pixar’s trilogy? I laughed, I cried, I was thoroughly entertained.

3. Metropolis (Remastered)

I saw this newly restored version of the film I’ve postponed seeing for years in the beautiful throwback theater Cinema 21 in Portland. It was 3 hours of utter transfixed engagement.

2. Let Me In

via io9

I actually saw the Swedish original after my spontaneous decision to see this American remake. Both are equally good, but I have to give kudos to director Matt Reeves for incorporating such riveting mise en scene the likes of which I haven’t seen since Slingblade.

1. Inception

Warner Bros.

Call me a fanboy, but Mr. Nolan once again proved that the hype was worth it. A truly imaginative adventure executed so brilliantly, even the Hans Zimmer soundtrack was a plot point of outstanding significance.

And now……

My Biggest Disappointments of 2010

5. The Losers

Meh.

4. The Expendables

I got that it was supposed to be what it was, but it could have been so much better than it was.

3. RED

The trailer showed all the important parts about this movie, except for the part where it’s strictly for old people who laugh at old people jokes.

2. Iron Man 2

Am I right?

1. Tron: Legacy

It’s been 12 years since I first heard a rumor about a Tron sequel (back then it was called Tron 2.0), and while I liked the effort put into this sequel-thing, it was filled with flaws. From the main character to the obvious Star Wars ripoff, there were many objections I felt as I watched this mess onscreen, in annoying 3-D. Namely this: How did Kevin Flynn manage to eat food all those years? They dine on pig and salad… where does that come from?

Honorable Mentions

True Grit – Just the Coens being Howard Hawks; no objections, and Mattie was memorable.

The Social Network – Another perfect role for Eisenberg, and a fun ride of a movie, albiet completely relevant as Zuckerberg takes Time Magazine’s Man of the Year.

Unstoppable – I like trains, and Ethan Suplee. Oh, and Denzel and Captain Kirk were great, too. Loved the subtle hat-tip to Runaway Train there near the end.

Machete – Whatever your opinion of immigration may be, just always remember — “Machete don’t text.” LOL, guilty pleasures rock!


RIP John Lennon

12/08/2010

I remember being in English class in Grade 8, and our teacher -who often taught with a guitar- described to us how awful this event was. I was surprised that a lot of my classmates had no idea who The Beatles were. Even though the mp3 world is experiencing a revolution in accessing those wonderful tunes, it’s the truth that those songs were rightfully hard to get without buying the entire albums.

Rest in PEACE, John.


Stallone Interview Goes Wrong

08/09/2010

Check out Sylvester Stallone’s interview for the Expendables. Seriously, this is so cool.

CHECK THIS OUT


YouTube: The Movie

08/04/2010

Anyone who has seen the trailer for the upcoming movie, The Social Network (video), which chronicles the rise of Facebook, is sure to see the similarities of that preview in this parody. This is the story of YouTube, written and co-directed by Jeff Loveness.

(Video Link)

The real movie looks amazing, and probably is, since it’s directed by David Fincher. There are few directors with his kind of staying power in Tinseltown.


Sadly, Mel Gibson is Dead to Me Now

07/01/2010

It is with a heavy heart, and a sad farewell that I confess: Mel Gibson is forever stricken from my list of actors I like. It’s a huge loss for me, as The Road Warrior and Lethal Weapon were both pivotal movies in my youth. However, the actor whose alcoholism has affected his work throughout his life, the guy who we tried to forgive for his Jose Cuervo inspired drunk driving arrest tirade, the guy who was infamous for being a practical joker on set…

He’s done it again. And I have had enough. Here’s to filmmakers hopefully culling a good remake of the Mad Max franchise. Maybe even remake the strangely titled Braveheart. Seriously, did anyone ever say the word “Braveheart” in that movie? I think not. And Mr. Gibson is not brave, and he has no heart. This is the final straw.


OK Goose

06/16/2010

Another brilliantly conceived one-take video by OK Go, with a surprise appearance by a territorial goose.

(YouTube Link)

I’m not sure what I love the most; the design andĀ implementationĀ of the concept or the naturally occurring fowl.


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