the awesome/terrifying freedom

out here, somewhere, figuring it all out.

coldplay is so gay

i mean, they cover madonna.

thanks, dolan :)

kong's kitten

first: i loved it.
second: it has problems.
third: yeah so and?

which has pretty much been the consensus down the line: how do you classify a film that alternately contains extreaneous unresolved dangling plot threads and the most incredible special effects and action sequences ever to be put on film? and not just 'wow, that looks cool' special effects, but along the lines of gollum, 'holy shit, that special effect not only has character, but it contains a human performance and is interacting with a human performance in a way that is so convincing that i'm actually beginning to take it for granted' kind of special effects. in short, you just can't not see it.

if you love movies, special effects, adventure.. this is the one. it made me feel like a kid again, watching 'temple of doom' or 'return of the jedi,' both deeply flawed films, but as a teenager, were my unequivocal favorites. i didn't care about the deeper complexites, better acting and tighter action to be found in 'empire' and 'raiders,' i just loved how 'temple' and 'jedi' were more complete, visceral stories.

i'm amazed at how long movies are getting - after uploading some of my favorites to itunes, where you see the running times displayed right next to each other, it's pretty arresting. all of the original star wars and indiana jones movies clock in at almost exactly 2 hours. we pretty much go to films now expecting them to be at least 2.5 hours. what seems to be happening is that films are no longer as disciplined. and with a little discipline, i think kong would be a stronger film. or, perhaps it's not running time that's the problem, but focus. it's clear that some sequences were already cut for time: filming on the beach at skull island (in the trailer), and the crew building a raft and being attacked by water creatures (as in the original).

it's all awesome, but the film, despite its length feels incomplete because not enough focus is given to its central, most amazing relationship - between kong and ann. to expound on the backstories of all the ship crew who will be picked off one by one anyway is subplot, and it's subplot that is at best tangentially connected to ann. it's like remaking star wars and spending most of the time showing us how aunt beru makes blue milkshakes. what we really need is more ann and kong, or more footage that deepens their relationship once they do meet. and those scenes are so fantastic, it makes you wish the whole film contained as much simple joy.

kong will do anything to pwotect a widdle puddy.

masters of horror

this weekend i was sick as a dog, but was able to catch up on some tv and web design work. i watched joe dante's contribution to showtime's 'masters of horror' miniseries, which was an unexpectedly fun twist on the zombie story - soldiers killed in iraq come back from the dead to vote against the conservative president's re-election.

what's most fun about the show is that it's called 'masters of horror' and the expected source of the 'horror,' the zombies, are totally non-threatening. they speak a few words, and politely show up to register to vote. joe dante very clearly depicts the 'horror' as being that committed by the bush administration. a great, timely, fun script, meant to preach to the converted in a previously unseen way. bravo. and thea gill as the ann coulter character was fantastic.

brokeback thoughts

really looking forward to finally seeing this.

an interesting article in slate essentially calls out the film as not really being gay at all, and being the better for it. from reading the story, and everything i've read about the film, it seems to be a fair assesment. why can't gay men tell their own story? it seems like the only gay people involved in this film were costume and makeup assistants.

ah well, we'll have to wait for 'superman' before we can see a truly gay film.

the new yorker makes an argument that if the film is accepted by the general public, it will be because the gay relationship is doomed, which makes it safe to 'like.' but i don't think that's totally true. what makes it safe to like is that there is no question of the stars' sexuality. the red state girls can watch jake and heath make out knowing that 'they don't really mean it,' and are probably thinking about kirsten and naomi. it's hot, sure, but it's also totally pretend. we never, at any point have to deal with actual gayness. but if they put two, hot, openly gay actors in there i'm willing to bet we would see genuine outcry against this film, not this smattering of lame protests.

i haven't heard anyone mention the similarity between brokeback and 'maurice,' which is an exquisite, heartbreaking merchant-ivory film of nearly identical themes and content (only set in 1913 upper class england) starring a young and gorgeous hugh grant and james wilby. i saw this film when i was in junior high, and i remember how it sort of cemented in me what had long been a torturous question of identity. here's hoping brokeback can do the same for others.

brandon routh

i've heard from a relatively close source that mr. routh's homo-ness is an on-set open secret.

there have also been a bunch of rumors that once the film is a huge hit, routh will publicly come out, in a big 'so ha!' to all the homophobes and fundamentalists that will have flocked to see superman. god i hope that's true.

also, the ipod boxer briefs have got to be the dumbest product ever devised.

though i gurantee come summer homos'll be running around chelsea wearing nothing but.

more ben foster

so i downloaded the hd version of the xmen trailer only to get a better look at mr. foster. i wouldn't say that he has 'greater proportionate muscle mass than an ordinary human,' but i will say me likee.


the power of lawyers is so irritating. pearlyrics, the wonderful little lyrics upload program i described a couple weeks ago, has now been shut down because of lawsuit threats. what? how is this little application that "searches public websites and caches the content" illegal? they might as well sue the entire universe for ever using google. god it just make me steaming crazy mad, this shit.

at some point, the legal world is going to have to realize that once something is on the internet, its value is promotional, not monetary, and it belongs to the entire online community. there's no fighting it, there's no taking it back, and there's no one to sue. only apple seems to understand that, and knows that the only way to make money off something free to begin with is to offer it easily, quickly, and in stellar quality.

check out this gap commercial by spike jones. the suits at gap changed the music - i can't listen to it at work, so i don't know how it changes the experience, but it's a pretty interesting commercial nevertheless. you can feel jones' distase for all things 'gap,' and his glee at destroying it. perhaps the suits felt that subversion, and called for the change in music to highlight the 'fun' of it rather than the joy of dismantling a homogenized coporation made possible by sweatshops.

nbc sucks

it's great that alfred hitchcock presents, the office, and battlestar galactica are now available on itunes.

what i wasn't expecting was that there would be on screen ads popping up during the office, hawking last season's episodes online, which sadly cheapened the ipod's appearance in an otherwise brilliant episode.

"gifts are great. how else can you point to something and say 'see? i love you. this many dollars worth.'"

rainn wilson is a genius. the show is better than nbc deserves. kudos to abc for respecting 'lost' enough to keep the screen clear.

ben foster

i'm intensely skeptical of xmen 3. brett ratner is capable, but has no vision. he's good at imitating others, and i think what we'll get from a 3rd xmen film is a duplicate of x2, rather than a true expansion of that series' universe.

that said, i'm mostly curious to see it because ben foster has been working out a lot to play angel, who, as the marvel website describes "is virtually devoid of fat and possesses greater proportionate muscle mass than an ordinary human does." will he be able to shed his former persona/specialty as dweeds and freakazoids?

a teaser for dreamgirls is now online. it really does nothing but announce the film, a year in advance. i have faith in bill condon, but rather than release something that looks like opening credits for american idol, they shoulda just kept quiet until there's actually, like, footage.

the first apple

great pic of the beginning of the future.

via tuaw

great graffiti

the best part about living in new york is that sometimes the graffiti is brilliant. i'll try and get a picture of this tomorrow, but scrawled across uma thurman's white dress on a subway platform billboard for 'the producers,' someone wrote in large permanent marker:


and then next to it in ball point pen, someone had circled the apostrophe and wrote:

"DAMMIT! - Lynne Truss, author of 'Eats, Shoots & Leaves.'"

bad association

um. so aside from being pretty dorky, this thing is called the 'hybrid assisted limb' (HAL) suit, intended to help the disabled walk again.

aside from sharing a name with the murderous computer from 2001, the suit is made by a japanese company called 'cyberdyne,' which may sound familiar, as it was the corporation in 'terminator' that brought about the end of the world through it's intuitive robot technology.

note to the handicapped: do not EVER strap yourself into one of these.

holy crap

if you're at all doubtful about 'king kong' then you need to watch this clip.

if you're not doubtful, don't watch it. save it for the big screen experience. you'll be so glad you did. i wish i hadn't watched it, but now that i have, i can't stop.

i'm not posting this as a clickable link, just so that you'll have to go to a little extra effort to watch it.

it's an ingenious display of inventive, coherent action, breathlessly executed with exquisite artistry.

i cannot fucking wait.

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  • 5: the man of genius

  • 4: blunders & absurdities

  • 3: conservative after dinner

  • 2: what lies below

  • 1: where there is no path

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