Saturday, January 31, 2009

Movie Rundown - Jan 19 to Feb 1

So, it's been a while, I decided that for some reason to not write a Movie Rundown for last week. So this week is gonna be pulling double duty. Sorry about that, but I'm pretty sure that you won't mind. It's not like I watched a TON of stuff.

Django (***) - This one's a very cult Spaghetti Western from the 60s. It also has the most infectious main theme I've ever heard. Seriously, that song is just ... terrifyingly catch. The movie itself was pretty solid, the typical tale of mysterious gunfighters, double- and triple-crosses, and blood soaked revenge. Not quite Leone-quality, but solid.

Dan in Real Life (****) - I'm fast developing a great appreciation for Steve Carrell. This movie is very solid, though it seems to meander in the third act and derail pretty hard right at the end. That said, the characters are very sweet, the humor low-key and grounded, and the movie has Dane Cook not being terrible. That's worth something.

Day of the Dead (*) - I don't believe in giving zeroes, but ... dammit, I wish I did. This film is TERRIBLE. There isn't a redeeming feature to it. It's a straight to DVD remake (remake being used VERY loosely) of Romero's best zombie movie, and it's ... a mess. In every way. I've never been bored watching a zombie rampage before. But I'll be honest, I didn't even finish this one. Stay away.

Tokyo Gore Police (*****)
This one get's special consideration. Let me explain. It's schlock. It's trash. It's full of craziness. But it's pretty easy to know if you're gonna like it or not. Just look at three pictures that I'll show you. Just think to yourself, do I want to see more of that? If yes, watch Tokyo Gore Police.




The Wrestler (*****) - I don't need to tell you this movie is good. Just ask just about anyone who's seen it. But this movie is a great look at both the world of professional wrestling, and about people who can't give up their dream, even when their dream has given up on them. It's not a happy film, it's not a nice or fuzzy film. But it's true and cold and somehow touching all at the same time. And Mickey Rourke is absolutely amazing in it.

In Bruges (****) - I honestly wasn't sure if I liked this movie or not. It's really kind of ... crazy. the tone is all over the place, and the jokes meld seamlessly into pretty serious drama. In the end, though, it's a whirlpool of comedy and drama, but they never blend into typical dramedy. Instead, they're just layered. More than once I would just kind of stare agape at the film and go "What the hell?" But ... in the end, I'm left thinking it was brilliant. Go figure.

Robot Stories (***) - This is a collection of very very independant short stories about how humanity might have to cope with the advances of technology. I only knew about this because NPR interviewed the director in a show, and I finally got to it in my queue. It was ... interesting enough, I suppose. the first two stories were rather uneventful, but the second two were worth it, I think. I don't know. I've never seen a movie where the lack of budget actually hurt the quality of the film (in my assessment) anyway, but I think the material required actors outside the director's budget. I dunno.

Anyway, that's it for this week. Sorry for the delay. I took the day off of work and everything kind of got pushed back because of it. Next week is Coraline, at least. I'm excited for that. Not sure what else is going to be on the docket.

Also, Watchmen comes out in little more than a month. You should be excited.

Calling all writers and language lovers--I need a new word!

So, everyone who's reading this. I've come to the conclusion that the english language is lacking a verb. What verb, you ask? Well, let me explain the action, and then I'll let you decide.

The action is what fellow writer Dan Faust called the 'ew-ew' arm wave. It's when someone (typically a small child or a teenage girl) is grossed out. The hands come up, almost as if they want to cover the mouth. Instead, they stay in front of the face/chest, palms facing each other or the chest, and wave back and forth fitfully.

Just sit there and try it. Scrunch your face up, and go "Ewwwwwww!" You'll know exactly the move I'm talking about.

So, that action? Doesn't have a word. Writer friend Sarah said that recoil worked, but recoil simply indicated a backwards action. Nothing about waving your arms. You don't need to go backwards to do this action. You just do it.

This is where you come in. This action, I think, needs a verb. What if you come across it in a book? Are you going to write "She waved her arms around while going 'ew-ew'"? No, that's inelegant. It'd be easier to just say "She ed".

So, writers, language-lovers, enjoyers of the obscure and strange, I want everyone to put their heads together and suggest what this word could be. I don't care what's eventually decided on, but there needs to be something, just for the sake of proper evolution of the language.

If you see this and think it deserves a proper verb for it, feel free to repost it, reword it, put it on twitter, run a poll, think of suggestions, anything. Maybe toss it back to me so I know what's going on with your circle of friends. The more people inputting on this one, the more likely we are to finally get a word that catches.

If anyone wants to offer me up suggestions, feel free to post them here, in your own blog, or on twitter. Tag it #newword or perhaps send me an @. I can be found at

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

A very strange meme.

I don't particularly do the meme thing, but this one interested me. From Lisa, who I won't link to because it's a more private journal (not that I think I have the readers for that to matter).

The first five people to respond to this post will get something made by me!

My choice. For you.

This offer does have some restrictions and limitations:

* I make no guarantees that you will like what I make!
* What I create will be with you in mind.
* It'll be done sometime this year (2009)
* You have no clue what it's going to be. It may be something written, some physical thing made, could be anything at all, but I will make it myself. It's entirely my choice what it is. No quibbles, no refunds--because you never paid me in the first place. :p

Most of these things will probably be IRL items, but I won't ask for addresses until later--if I need them at all.

The catch?

Oh, the catch is that you put this in your journal as well. If you don't, you don't get anything.