Sunday, August 30, 2009
50. "500 Days of Summer"
This movie is awful. I went in wanting to love it. I did not. It's really bad. I did not like this movie. It couldn't have been made better because the story is so boring and bad and full of shit.
There's a lot of tricks used in the film. Some 'experimental' stuff and a lot of scenes shot like a music video. They did not work. It's bad.
After watching this film I wanted to see a Clive Owen film (excluding "Duplicity").
After seeing the film I yelled/talked to Kelsey for an hour in the car. We share the same criticisms. I won't go on for an hour because at one point, my anger with this film had me spitting while I yelled/talked. Enough is enough.
18. Aleksandar Hemon "Nowhere Man"
I took my time with this book. It made it resonate more than a quick, two day sit down would have. I'm glad I spent my sweet time with this book. I loved it. I highly recommend it for anyone interested in Chicago based literature. My friend that likes Russian literature also liked it quite a bit. Read this debut novel. I will be spending the rest of the year finishing the rest of the Hemon catalog.
49. "Gran Torino"
Yea, it's racist and extremely stereotypical, but I liked it. I'll watch Eastwood do pretty much anything. It didn't deserve the massive acclaim rained on it when it was released last fall, but whatever. It's an enjoyable flick with a predictable arc that any fan of Eastwood will enjoy. A good rental.
48. “How to Lose Friends & Alienate People”
I love Simon Pegg. I still love him after this movie. It shouldn’t have been made. It wasn’t good. It was predictable. It wasted the talents of Pegg, Jeff Bridges and Kirsten Dunst (her performance was actually the first of hers I have enjoyed since “The Virgin Suicides”). It never gelled. The preview looked good. I swear to god it did. I should stop watching trailers.
This is the first film with Megan Fox that I have seen. I guess I understand the attraction. I do not agree with it, but I understand it.
Thandie Newton has a cameo early in the film. It was neat to see Pegg try to charm the actress considering he played her romantic lead in his last film before this one (“Run, Fatboy, Run”). It would have been a lot neater if either film was any good.
Thursday, August 27, 2009
47. "Funny People"
I've spent too much time thinking about this film. I didn't love the film but I didn't hate it. I was told I'd love it. I was told I'd hate it. I was told that it showed a lot of growth. I was told it was Adam Sandler's best role. I don't think I agree with anyone I talked to about this film.
Stand-up on screen doesn't work too well. Maybe if it was performed by real stand-ups, or the real stand-ups got to be funny, it would have worked better. For example, Aziz Ansari plays a stand-up named Randy. He's bad and relies on gimmicks. He's used to show that gimmicks can but probably shouldn't work in making people laugh. Fine. But Aziz Ansari actually did perform stand-up and it's actually funny. Why not let Aziz play the comic that's funny and give the gimmicky stuff to someone that isn't a stand-up, like Sandler, Rogen or Hill. (I realize that Sandler and Rogen have performed stand-up but it has been at least a decade since Sandler did it and I'm pretty sure Rogen hasn't done stand-up since "Freaks and Geeks")
It did go on for too long. It wasn't a big problem.
According to most current mainstream comedies, I do not joke about my penis enough.
The heavy parts weren't too heavy but the funny parts weren't that funny.
I've spent too much time thinking about this film.
Monday, August 24, 2009
46. "I Love You, Man"
It wasn't funny. It had funny ideas but not many funny moments. The C story of Jamie Pressly and Jon Favreau is more interesting than the rest of the movie. I liked all the characters and it was extremely non-offensive, it just never clicked.
I wanted to see this film and like this film since I first heard about it. Jenna Fischer wrote, directed and starred in this film with her now ex-husband. I wanted to be inspired by the short feature length (it's about an hour long). I did not. I couldn't finish it. Maybe the last half is better than the first. I'll never know. I'm fine with that.
An interesting lead role for Galifianakis. The film has an odd pace with a basic story. It's not bad but it's far from good. It's a really quiet film and sometimes hard to watch, but definitely worth sticking with til the end. Sorry there's not more to mention. There isn't much to write about. That's not a bad thing.
Friday, August 14, 2009
The internet is down at the apartment. I'm at Mercury Cafe. I've been coming here to update the podcasts. I apologize for writing a blog post at an internet cafe.
"The Shuffle" is mostly done. Some scenes were tweaked last night and the film has been send to Daniel Knox to be scored. Charlie shot the image for the poster on the last day of shooting. It looks fantastic. It makes the thing feel more real. We will be screening the film at the Hungry Brain in September or October. It's going to be submitted to festivals by the end of the month. I am nervous and excited to finish the thing. Once it's done I'll begin more substantial work on the new film(s).
Fetor is almost done. We will play one last show this fall/winter. It'll be loud and fun. We'll all bleed. Rather than wait for the last show to start something new, we (well, most of us) are going to be in a new band, for now called Precinct Captains. We're playing our first show at Quencher's on September 30. Please show up if you can. It'll be fun. Probably not as loud or angry as Fetor, but fun.
I haven't been keeping up with the 104 films and 52 books per year. It's due to laziness and the film. I've watched footage we shot over three days for the last four months. I've also watched all of "The Wire" and "Spaced", which makes up the time spent watching thirty-three two hour films. Whatever. I'll get back on track. I've also spent too much time doing crossword puzzles and not discovering authors.
I've been watching a lot of "The Daily Show" on Hulu.
The podcast is going relatively well. Thanks to Kelsey, the 'studio' has a fancy new Ikea desk, a new boom mic stand and, finally, the use of two high quality microphones.
The flickr account hasn't been updated for a while because I'm going to cover the Green Music Festival, which occurs Saturday and Sunday at the park about 50 yards away from my apartment. I do not yet have a professional flickr account so rather than full up my space, I've been waiting to cover the festival and figure out a way for the podcast to link to some photos. Make sense? Keep in mind I've been drinking coffee in a coffeehouse while writing this thing, all the while smelling like balls. (I smell like balls because I walk outside for work and it's hot outside in Chicago.)
The Monday night YMTE series at the Brain has been going well. I'm enjoying the stand-up quite a bit, the music has brought steady crowds, the films are inspiring, the readings have been making me write more (though it doesn't seem like it based on these ramblings) and having Everything Is Terrible every two months or so is a great shot in the arm. I can't think of one major problem with the series, which makes it a success.
I don't mind the music in Mercury Cafe. They're playing Neil Young circa late 70s.
Thanks to Kelsey, I'm going to see "Funny People" tonight. I've been told I'll enjoy it. I used to get Seth Rogen comparisons every few days. They've slowed done over the last year. While bartending a week or so ago I was told I sound and look like Seth Rogen. Five minutes later I was told by a separate group of people that I sound like that one guy that used to be fatter and stars with Adam Sandler in that new Judd Apatow movie.
I'm going to make a film like "Help!" because the mistakes in the film will look intentional and hopefully funny.
How often does The Mutiny get a complete scrub down? I haven't been there in months but every time I even hear of the bars name it seems to smell like piss.
I'm thinking about becoming a painter. Not the artsy kind, but the kind that wakes up at the crack of dawn and makes the world look a little better.
The new issue of Foul, I haven't said that in years, will come out by years end. I have a few more pieces. Odd.
The poster is for this Monday at the Brain. Come on by.