I haven’t posted here in almost two years. That’s ok, as I probably won’t again unless I’m linking to something else I’m doing. In the meantime, below is a link for a ‘zine I write for called Is it Over Yet?. There’s a release show going on Friday, November 25th, 2013 at The Space in Orlando, Florida. It’s on the corner of Colonial Drive and Mills, above Anthony’s Pizza. A few bands are playing too (Permanent Makeup from Tampa, Wet Nurse, Pop//Nazi, and another band I can’t remember). The show is free but they’re taking donations for the touring bands. I’m also reading one of my essays.
If you’ve been salivating for my return to this blog, I’m sorry I haven’t written here in a while. I moved and moved back, got a new job, graduated college, spent time with my cats, and so forth. For those I kept in contact with via this blog, if you’d like to get back in contact post a message and we’ll chat. Thanks for reading.
Is It Over Yet? website: http://isitoveryetmagazine.wordpress.com
I just started watching Portlandia about two weeks ago. Attempting to promote the new season, which plays on Friday nights on IFC, Netflix has the first season streaming and I bit – after all it has Carrie from Sleater Kinney and Fred Armisen. Portlandia has been around for about a year; unfortunately in Florida I didn’t have IFC and didn’t really search it out. Instead the show just came my way and I’m glad it did.
While not all the sketches succeed there are many that do. Below is my personal favorite and is the one which appears at the beginning of the pilot episode:
The second season of AMC’s adaptation of The Walking Dead is taking a break until February 2011 (most likely coinciding with the return of Mad Men) and for the first time since the very first two episodes I’m excited. It only took seven or more episodes for The Walking Dead to actually get decent again, especially after the horribly embarrassing season one finale. I’m willing to suspend my belief and go along for a fantastic ride on most occasions (after all, we’re dealing with corpses rising and eating the living here) but believing the CDC is a time sensitive, thermonuclear device is ludicrous. Please, prove me wrong.
Posted in Television
Tagged AMC, Andrea, Andrew Lincoln, Carl, Dale, Daryl, Frank Darabont, george a. romero, Glen, Jon Bernthal, Lori, Michael Rooker, Norman Reedus, Rick, Robert Kirkman, Sarah Wayne Callies, Shane, The Walking Dead, zombies
There are some directors who make good films for their entire careers. Most of the time filmmakers drop off at a certain point, falling into mediocrity and living off their previous accomplishments until their inevitable demise. I’m beginning to think Steven Spielberg is one such man.
I really can’t stand Billy Madison anymore; it’s a stupid, stupid movie. However, for some reason this song jumped in my head while showering this morning, making me chuckle.
Stallone walked into a Warner Brothers office and said he wanted ten million dollars to make a montage of constipated faces with Sammy Hagar’s latest abortion playing behind it. They gave him 25 million and said to wrap a loose story around it. The result is Over the Top, a film about the high stakes world of competitive arm wrestling. Since the MPAA wouldn’t give a PG rating to a film about harrowing bowel movements Stallone used the “sport” as a vehicle for his ambitions – showing the most absurd action faces in film history. I’m honestly not sure whether it’s asinine or art, poking fun at the hyper-bravado inherent in the average American male.
Below is a selection of screen captures I did this afternoon while watching another Stallone movie: Rocky III, featuring Mr. T and Hulk Hogan as Thunderlips. It’s the first time I’ve had a free afternoon in quite a while and I’m sharing it with you, dear reader, in the hopes that these pictures from Over the Top become a desktop background somewhere.
Arriving home from a pretty terrible evening I watched George A. Romero’s 1985 Day of the Dead. I picked it up on Blu-Ray a while back for $5 and hadn’t watched it yet and last night seemed like an ample opportunity. It’s not my favorite of Romero’s zombie films (although it’s better than Survival of the Dead) but Day has a special quality I can’t quite put my finger on. After watching the documentaries on the Day disc I found out why the film isn’t as spectacular as the first two: they didn’t have the money and Romero’s aspirations exceeded his budget.
One of the bonus features which grabbing my attention is a short promotional film for Gateway Commerce Center. Located outside Pittsburgh, Gateway is an old mine turned into an underground storage facility where Romero shot the film. It’s a very sterile, creepy looking kind of place. Below is the video from the disc, which is both interesting and kitschy.
Also, I feel it’s important to comment on my lack of posts lately: I’m moving to New Jersey and have been busy getting that together while also working to save up extra funds.
ABC, now owned by Disney, wouldn’t let a child smoke on television let alone hold a lit cigarette on a prime-time sitcom. If The Wonder Years illustrates how much changed between the ’60s and the ’80s then the show also demonstrates how much has changed between then and now, the smoke free 21st century.
Netflix just put The Wonder Years up a few weeks ago and aside from the theme song change (using a different version of With a Little Help from My Friends) the show is pretty much the same. They did remove songs by The Doors and Jimi Hendrix but the sentiments are still there, wrapped up in a 20 minute expose on suburban America. As a child I watched The Wonder Years on ABC, feeling jealous of Kevin Arnold’s middle school exploits (I was about eight or nine); now I see it as a well made series describing the trials and tribulations of white Americans. Honestly, I’ve seen one or two black people on the show and I’m in the third season.
Posted in Television
Tagged ABC, Alley Mills, America, Dan Lauria, Danica McKellar, Daniel Stern, Fred Savage, hyper-reality, Jack Arnold, Jason Hervey, Josh Saviano, Kevin Arnold, Norma Arnold, Paul Pfeiffer, street fetishism, suburbia, The Wonder Years, Vietnam, Wayne Arnold, Winnie Cooper
I know it’s been a while since I’ve written anything on my blog and my last post explains why. However, after almost a week of the flu (including a 101 degree temperature at one point) I’m finally mostly better. This morning I woke up and watched a documentary about Planet of the Apes, which was very interesting. Being the media addicted nerd I am I started looking up the various actors and actresses from the Apes films and found this interview with Roddy McDowall (Planet of the Apes series, That Darn Cat, Cleopatra). It comes from the magazine Scarlet Street and appeared in a 1998 issue.
Click on the apes to read the interview.
It’s been a while since I’ve posted on my blog and here are the reasons:
1. I’m moving to the New York City area shortly.
2. I’ve been really, really busy.
3. I started doing stand-up comedy.
That’s right: stand-up comedy. Naturally it’s of an amateur variety but it’s a blast. That said I’ll be at Austin’s in Winter Park this coming Sunday. I have more posts coming (even though I haven’t posted I’ve been writing some) but in the meanwhile here are pictures of famous people eating.
That’s right bitches: I’m doing stand-up comedy tonight. This is happening at Austin’s Coffee on Fairbanks Avenue in Winter Park, Florida. If for some reason you live in Central Florida, like amateur stand-up comedy, and have nothing to do come out and watch me potentially stink up the place (both figuratively and literally). The laughs (and boos) start around 8:30. Below is a map. Hope to see you there.
Yes, it’s true: Andy Warhol liked professional wrestling…or at least he said he did. Here is a clip from a 1985 show I’ve never heard of, The War to Settle the Score, which was a mixture of professional wrestling and MTV style pop music. Warhol appears towards the end, after a bunch of nonsense from Hulk Hogan, Mr. T, and Captain Lou. Good luck.
Click here to watch this because MTV is awful…or maybe it’s WordPress who sucks.
Spetters (when translated means hunks) is a coming of age story directed by the notorious Paul Verhoeven a few years prior to his entrance into the American film scene with Robocop. Following three friends – Reen (Hans van Tongeren), Hans (Maarten Spanjer), and Eef (Toon Agterberg) – from a small town in The Netherlands, Spetters explores both the world of motocross and finding out who one really is. It’s also a film filled with much sexuality and a good deal of homoeroticism. I’d never seen any of Verhoeven’s Dutch films before and after watching Spetters I can see not only why he made it to America (he can direct an interesting and visually striking film) and why he’s such a controversial director.
It’s been 15 years since Transpotting hit theaters, propelling Ewan McGregor (Renton) into an international star, and it’s a film which still holds up (even Sick Boy says, “Heroin’s got a great fucking personality”). After all, humans have been finding ways to intoxicate themselves for countless centuries and even though the substances may change over the years the motivations are the same. While so many films from the ‘90s are dated, reeking of nostalgia and a different era (dial-up modems, baggy pants, and so forth), Trainspotting is still relevant today.
Posted in Movies
Tagged Begbie, Danny Boyle, Diane, Ewan McGregor, Ewen Bremner, heroin, Irvine Welsh, Jonny Lee Miller, junkie, Kelly MacDonald, Kevin McKidd, Mother Superior, Renton, Robert Carlyle, scag, Scotland, Sick Boy, Spud, Tommy, Trainspotting
Makes you feel quite insignificant doesn’t it? Also, doesn’t it make humanity reaching Star Trek levels within the next few hundred years seem all the more important?
*Note: if it doesn’t load on the blog’s main page click on the image for the entire show. Thank you*
Ric Flair, one of the most iconic professional wrestlers of the 20th century, is without a doubt an institution. While there are multiple professional wrestlers from the 1970s and ‘80s who are household names – Hulk Hogan, “Macho Man” Randy Savage, Jake “the Snake” Roberts, and “Rowdy” Roddy Piper are a few examples – Ric Flair is the only one of those men still actually wrestling. On September 15th Flair will meet Sting on an episode of TNA Wrestling’s Impact and at 62 years old he’s one of the few professional wrestlers ever to perform at his age. However, it’s not Flair’s in-ring performances on trial here but his absurdity, appearing on his personal website RicFlair.com.
Aimlessly lurking around on the internet this afternoon I did what so many people do on occasion: started typing in random names, phrases, and words, adding .com afterwards to see if they actually exist. Eventually I typed in Ric Flair’s name and found his personal website, featuring very little other than links to his Facebook, Twitter, and online shop. Curiously, I clicked on his shop and found myself amazed at what he’s selling. Below are the most absurd things he’s hocking online:
This upcoming Tuesday (September 6, 2011) Brian DePalma’s 1983 ultra-violent classic Scarface comes out on Blu-Ray for the very first time. Maybe it’s because there’s a glut of Scarface representations in the media lately; maybe it’s because The Blood Bros’ second mix Heaven 2 Hell begins with Paul Engemann’s Push it to the Limit and I’ve been listening to that mix regularly for the last few weeks; maybe it’s because I seem to watch Scarface every decade – I’m not entirely sure. I just know that I’ve been itching to watch Scarface for the last few weeks and last night I achieved just that.
Ten years ago, the last time I watched Scarface, I didn’t really like it. All the hype surrounding the film didn’t equal the presentation. I still feel this way but watching this viewing yielded a different response: I loved Scarface and thought it was hysterical. I know DePalma, Pacino, and author Oliver Stone weren’t looking for camp but that’s exactly what they delivered. Scarface, even with all its social commentary and explorations in humanity, is a gaudy film akin to other unintentional comedies like Showgirls (which is far superior). The characters, for the most part, are ridiculous and the Cuban accents portrayed by American actors are laughable. I’ll admit Pacino did capture the mannerisms of Cuban-Americans with panache but that about all; everything else is overblown and draws laughter instead of awe.
Posted in Movies
Tagged 1983, Al Pacino, American Dream, Brian DePalma, capitalism, cocaine, Cuba, Elvira, F. Murry Abraham, Frank Lopez, Horatio Alger, Manny, Mariel Boatlift, Mary Elizabeth Mastrantonio, Miami, Michelle Pfeiffer, oil, Oliver Stone, Omar Suarez, Robert Loggia, Scarface, Scarface Blu Ray, The World is Yours, There Will be Blood, Tony Montana, Upton Sinclair, Why we Fight
I’m almost ashamed to admit I’ve never seen Mad Max. I’ve seen The Road Warrior many times and it’s a great flick rife with homoeroticism, filled with great car chases and a believable representation of humanity’s next Dark Age. Mad Max, which takes place during society’s fall, is different – the characters are still holding onto hope while living in an oppressive police state filled with hyper-criminality. Its obvious civilization is in a state of disarray but for the majority of Mad Max it’s uncertain what exactly is going on, almost like the culture depicted is confused. It runs the gamut between looking like a poverty stricken, depressed environment and a bucolic wasteland; I’m convinced the film is a little confusing.
Posted in Movies
Tagged 1979, Australian film, Ford Falcon, George Miller, Goose, Joanne Samuel, Mad Max, Mel Gibson, Night Rider, post-apocalyptic, science fiction, The Road Warrior, Tim Burns, Toecutter
Hobo with a Shotgun isn’t very good. In fact, it’s pretty awful. The premise, a hobo, played by Rutger Hauer (Blade Runner, Soldier of Orange), hops off a train into a new town. Finding the town despicable and overrun by criminals, the hobo becomes a vigilante. He befriends a prostitute (Molly Dunsworth) and with her help takes on the city’s main crime boss: The Drake (Brian Downey). However, the film’s plot, which seems like a good idea, is instead a mediocre ride through cheap violence and sadism, offering nothing substantial.
Why am I enjoying King of the Hill so much? I’ve watching many episodes, mostly in syndication, over the years but lately I’ve been watching them on Netflix and it’s horribly engrossing. I’ve only been to Texas two times and although I didn’t stay around long enough to absorb all of this giant state’s color I feel I got a good feel for what the Lone Star State is like – it’s big, sometimes dirty, and people love Texas. Even though the “Don’t Mess with Texas” slogan was created for an anti-littering campaign it’s become the mantra of Texans; it also aptly describes the state’s population and the characters on King of the Hill.
Posted in Television
Tagged animation, Arlen, Bill, Bobby Hill, Boomhauer, Dale Gribble, Fox, Hank Hill, John Redcorn, Joseph Gribble, Khan, King of the Hill, Mike Judge, Peggy Hill, Rusty Shackleford, Strickland Propane, Texas
I never saw this before but my girlfriend, who is younger than I am, saw this when she was a kid: it’s The Muppets singing Kokomo by The Beach Boys (and not the good Beach Boys but the lineup with John Stamos). This is pretty funny because Kokomo is about going to a tropical island, getting drunk, and fucking. What? I’m not sure those producing this Muppetastic clip realized what they were doing but thankfully they did, because it’s really funny and a little raunchy.
I’ve been to a few summer movies and run the gamut between bored and excited (I liked Rise of the Planet of the Apes). But one of the things I enjoy is watching the trailers, seeing what’s coming out next. The trailers attached to this summer’s films have been pretty funny and I figured it’s time to give my two cents on a handful of them.
Precious: Based on the Novel Push by Sapphire is one of the most depressing films I’ve seen in quite a while. It’s also a film I can’t truly relate to: I’m white, can read, and had family pushing me to read and succeed (sometimes). Aside from my unfamiliarity with the events in Precious: Based on the Novel Push by Sapphire (that’s how I’m going to say it every damn time) I felt uncomfortable and sad through the entire film. Just when you think things are bad it gets worse – like Lars Von Trier’s Dancer in the Dark, a film which goes from bad to worse to even worse and finally death.
Posted in Movies
Tagged Academy Award winner, Academy Awards, AIDS, Blu Rain, Clarice "Precious" Jones, Dancer in the Dark, Enjoy Your Symptoms!, Gabourey Sidibe, GED, Geoffrey S. Fletcher, HIV, Lars Von Trier, Lee Daniels, Lenny Kravitz, Mariah Carey, Mary, MoN'ique, Mrs. Weiss, Native Son, Oprah Winfrey, Oscars, Paula Patton, Precious, Precious: Based on the Novel Push by Sapphire, Richard Wright, Slavoj Žižek, welfare