Sunday, May 31, 2009

Review: Disney/Pixar's Up

The first thing I'd like to say is this: I am seeing a trend in Pixar Movies...they are slowly getting sadder and sadder. Wall-E made us sad as we watched this poor little robot all by himself, yet making the best of life. He was also such a willing hero to sacrifice himself for the better of the humans. The scene where he doesn't recognize Eve, is just well devastating.

That being said, before you see Up, emotionally ready yourself because at times it's devastating. By "Devastating" I mean like more than half of the movie tugs at your emotions worse than that scene in Wall-E that was mentioned above.

However, that does not mean that Up is not a phenomenal movie. It's hysterical, intriguing, sad, and well just extremely well written. The characters are well developed and realistic, especially the dogs. I never thought that "dog" could be an actual written dialect, but trust me, if dogs could talk, it would be like they do in this movie.

Up's pacing was also spot on. This movie progressed seamlessly and all of it's elements flow so well together. At one moment you are next to tears because you're sad, then suddenly you're next to tears because you can't stop laughing.

The only strange thing about the story is when Carl and Russel meet the antagonist. I don't want to spoil it, but the character that is the "bad guy," according to the time line that we seemed to be presented with, should be at least 90 years old...if not older. I don't was just strange.

Lastly, don't spend the extra money on 3-D. There weren't all that many times when 3-D gave a unique perspective that made me go, "wow." Save yourself some money and get some candy instead.

Friday, May 15, 2009

Hell's Kitchen Finale!

Last night on the Hell's Kitchen finale, Danny beat Paula for rights to be head chef at the Borgata in Atlantic City.

Danny was my pick from the start.

2 key factors:

1) In one of the first services Ramsey said something like, "Danny that lamb's cooked nicely," then sous chef Scott commented that Danny's cooking was "spot on."

2) The code has been cracked...Last year during the theme song, Christina was the 9th chef to be named. This year, Danny was the 9th. Think about it.

Friday, May 8, 2009

Movie Review: Star Trek

Space: J. J. Abram's Final Frontier
I have two distinct points to make in my review for the new Star Trek movie.

1. Amazing.

2. Simon Pegg as Scotty = Brilliant.

Sorry if this seems like a cop out...but I'm's that good. Even if your not a fan of the franchise, it does a good job of orienting you and including you in the story and the excitement.

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Birthday revelations

Happy Birthday to you

So I recently celebrated my 24th birthday. A year away from a quarter century. The past few years I've noticed that birthdays have become less exciting and I couldn't quite figure out why.

But it has to be more than just aging, not having an age milestone (16, 18, 21,) to achieve. It's also not always having to check in with yourself and take account of what you've accomplished the past 365 days. There has to be a little something more. As I move further away from 18 I've become more aware of this, and last night I finally figured it out.

It has to do with the celebration of your birth by loved ones. Think on it now, but when you get together with your family, it becomes a recount of your life. I love my family and they love me. On birthday's they always talk about memories of me that have made an impact on their lives. My mom tells me when she went into labor, how my father held me for the first time. My father recounts that I was rarely disciplined. My grandmother, "what a handsome boy you were," (though she does add, and still is.) I didn't take to potty training well, and lo Cory always used to run around naked. "He was such an excellent sleeper."

The point: It's not a birthday's a eulogy! There is no promise for the future or what I will be doing, it's what I have done. Since I was the bday boy I felt out of place to disrupt the "ceremonies," so I still sort of felt like I wasn't there, thus furthering the eulogy notion. Now if this should ever befall the eyes of my loved ones, please do not take it as a complaint, as I love all of you deeply. I'm merely exploring why people have disdain for birthdays after a certain point in time. Eulogies. Sigh. 25 here I come.

Saturday, May 2, 2009

Review: X-Men Origins: Wolverine

***May contain spoilers*** Here is the short review: If you like the X-Men series and by this I mean the comics, not just the other three movies--and you are a fan of the mythos and lore and story, then this movie might not make you happy.

If you don't care about the X-Men series and you just want an awesome action movie with some overdone CGI that looks blatantly fake, then go ahead. You can even take your girlfriend because Hugh Jackman is pretty close to naked in the film and you can distract her with that.

Longer review:

I think this movie should have been called, X-Men Origins: Cocktease.

Here's why: This movie's most consistent attribute is that is gives you about five seconds of something you want to see and then takes it away forever. Take Gambit for example. Fans of the series have wanted to see Gambit from day one. He was rumored to be in "X2" and then again was supposed to show up in "X-Men: The Last Stand," but in both instances he was cut out. So when Gambit appears in the "Origins" trailer, I get mucho excited. But...yeah, he's in the movie for about five minutes. On top of that, most of the time we see him, he's doing some nutso flipping ninja action. Now don't get me wrong, I'm a big fan of Ninja's and I know that's one of Gambit's maneuvers, but it just seem so out of place in this modern, non-comic rendition of the X-Men. I mean there is a reason why Wolverine doesn't wear the yellow polyester. Oh, how come only once in the whole movie does Gambit use his playing cards as a weapon? THAT IS WHAT DEFINES HIM. When he does it, it's so cool, but it only happens once.

Similar things can be said about John Wraith. Halfway through the film when it seems like Wolverine's on his own, he runs into John Wraith again. It seems like maybe they will be all "Army of Two," against Stryker and Sabertooth...but no...that only last for about five seconds too. It honestly seems like whenever they have something cool happening, they decide to move on. Also it seems like the filmmakers did not want to make a film that was based on the other three. Like every so often you can almost hear the director yell from off screen, "Oh crap, um, hey guys we should um make something up right now about why Wolverine can't remember anything." The ties to the other movies are so awkwardly placed that its...well..awkward.

Perhaps another title should be: X-Men: ZOMBIES!

I don't know about you all who read this, the two of you that do, but I mean what is it with the removal of heads? That is how you kill zombies right? I didn't know it was the only thing that killed X-Men. At three separate points, that I can remember, decapitation is used to indicate what is needed to kill someone. Stryker orders Weapon XI to decapitate Wolverine (as even Ademantium Bullets won't do the trick,) but then Wolverine finds that the only way to kill Weapon XI is to also go for the head. When asked how Wolverine will kill Victor Creed/Sabertooth (Wolverine's brother in this movie...) Wolverine replies, "I'm gonna cut off your God damned head. See if that works." Seriously? Okay. I guess. Why don't you just use your claws to spark a fire that catches a trail of gasoline that eventually burns all the way to a helicopter thus exploding it...or something?

There are also a lot of major loose ends that aren't tied up, which leaves one to wonder if they are planning for a X-Men Origins: Wolverine 2.

Acting is pretty good, especially Jackman. Taylor Kitsch turns in a wonderful Gambit, I just wish there was more of him. Wil.I.Am is a good John Wraith. I also never thought I'd say this either, but Ryan Reynolds in an X-Men movie (as Deadpool) was pretty fantastic. "Okay, people are dead." "Your looking nice today sir, it's the green, it brings out the seriousness in your eyes." I was a fan of Ryan Reynolds in this movie. Congratz universe. You win.

Last pet peeve. Why? Why? Why? Why in the very beginning when we first meet Logan, (played by a child) are we shown his "father" taking care of him. The "father" is played by an actor who looks just like Jackman, obviously signifying that this youngster is Logan because he will grow up to resemble his father. Right? So then why, several moments later after a disgruntled neighbor shoots and kills the father played by a Jackman look-a-like (who again...looks like Wolverine) does the neighbor...who looks nothing like Wolverine...inform little Logan that he is actually Logans father.

That was a confusing paragraph, let me try to point it out with some simpler phrasing:

Hugh Jackman look-a-like "dad" + Young Logan/Wolverine = Makes sense because Jackman also plays old Wolverine

Random Neighbor/Real Dad + Young Logan/Wolverine = No sense...because there is no actual resemblance. Why go through the fuss to get Jackman-ish to play the part if it ultimately doesn't matter and serves to confuse the audience?

Thanks to Bill Gatevackes for catching an error in my post. Nice to know someone reads! (In fact thats why I did that see if anyone actually reads muahahahahahaha!)