It’s All Over For Post Secret

31 05 2005

The web site POST SECRET, which I’ve had in my link list over there on the left of this there page, was featured in an article in the New York Times today.

Oh well, it’s officially all over. They’ve been discovered. Within months they’ll sell the site for 65 million dollars to some Silicon Valley Venture Capitalists.



Top Ten Movies — Again

30 05 2005

Hey, what did you think?  We did it in our suits?So STAR WARS kicked butt again at the box office this long weekend.

Has anyone NOT seen that film yet?

1. Star Wars: Episode III – Revenge of the Sith (Saw it. Liked it. See below)
2. Madagascar (Haven’t seen it. I doubt I ever will.)
3. The Longest Yard (Haven’t seen it. I know I never will.)
4. Monster-in-Law (Don’t even speak of this film to me.)
5. Kicking and Screaming (I know it’s supposed to be good. Catch me another week.)
6. Crash (Still haven’t seen it. My bad.)
7. The Interpreter (ARGHHHHHHHHH!)
8. Unleashed (Uh, don’t think so.)
9. Kingdom of Heaven (Don’t even talk about this to me.)
10. House of Wax (Wow! You mean Elisha Cuthbert AND Paris Hilton all in one movie!?!?! Uh… NO.)



Must… Blow… Myself… Up

30 05 2005

Did American ritual of Memorial Day barbecue.

Cooked much meat and veggie burgers.

Ate much meat.

Drank much beer and wine.

Must… blow… myself… up… right… now.



Another List of Top Films

30 05 2005

Lawrence Walker, who publishes the blog “A Better Nation” has posted his own list of his favorite films, commenting on the same Time Magazine top 100 list that I commented on last week.

This list is almost exclusively of Hollywood movies and includes films like FANTASIA, as well as SINGIN IN THE RAIN and THE GODFATHER(S).



The Dumbest Drivers Are…

29 05 2005

Whenever I drive or visit Boston I end up wanting to scream at the drivers, who don’t seem to know any of he rules of the rolad. Now, a survey by GMAC Insurance company, tells me that New England drivers are the worst in the country. Rhode Island drivers are, by far, the dumbest, followed closely by Massachusetts (yeah, Boston) and Joisey.

Sometimes, prejudices are correct, eh?

But don’t jump up and down so much, oh ye people of the Car Culture. California was number 43, as reported in the list of all states here.
I apologize for the popup ads which come along with these links.
Damn you Time Inc!!



Brando Day 2

28 05 2005

And GODFATHER wasn’t bad either. Awe-damn-some, in fact. Everyone at the top of their game.

See this one on the big screen too.



Apocalypse Right NOW

28 05 2005

I don’t know if I mentioned this before, but Francis Coppola rocks my world. I’ve worked with him a few times and have always been impressed by his Big Picture thinking and his artistry, even if the film isn’t always the best.

Last night I saw APOCALYPSE NOW; REDUX at the Cinematheque and it’s an incredible work at the same time that it fails.

First, this is truly a deep movie. Deep in the sense that there is plenty of room for discussion afterwards and plenty of psychological travel that the Willard character and the audience must go through in order to reach the amazing conclusion.

Next, this is a flawed film, even more so in the REDUX version than in the original version which I saw at the Ziegfeld in New York when it first came out (as well as the Dome at here). It is a road movie of epic proportions and, like most road movies, is incredibly episodic. In the original version this aspect of it was glossed over by a shorter running time. Now, with nearly 50 minutes added, bloating its running time to 3 hours and 22 minutes, you get to see the seams. Some of the new scenes are helpful but there are two that create more of an episodic feel than the film can handle, even if they do add some character and background.

In one, two of the Playboy bunnies who we’ve seen run away from a concert gone crazy (like everything else in the war) are found stranded in a muddy encampment, nearly out of their minds. Both of them submit to the sexual advances of our men while clearly being miles away in their own heads. Ignoring the conundrum of why a completely driven and obsessed Willard would even allow for a lengthy stop on his quest (not to mention, giving up two containers of boat fuel), the scene makes a small point at great length.

The other added scene is a lengthy sequence on a French plantation in which a family of industrialists argues about their future in front of Willard. One, a beautiful widow who eventually takes him to bed, uses the scene to tell Willard the relatively important but obvious fact that he has two sides to him — a peaceful, loving side, and a warrior side. Once again, it is a point that is, while not as obvious as the Playmate one, takes way too long for its payoff.

Still, the film is a masterpiece of character study, both for Marlon Brando’s Kurtz and Martin Sheen’s Willard, as well as the keenly observed crew on the boat that takes Willard up the river to the Heart of Darkness.

If you can see this film on the big screen — DO IT!!



Which City Do YOU Want To Live In?

27 05 2005

Another stupid web quiz. This one asks you a bunch of questions about the things that you like to live amongst, and determines what city suits you best. My results are not completely surprising — New York, Chicago and LA are all great cities with varying degress of spontaneous life. But Honolulu? What’s up with that? In any case, here are the results:

American Cities That Best Fit You:

60% &nbsp&nbsp&nbsp New York City
55% &nbsp&nbsp&nbsp Chicago
50% &nbsp&nbsp&nbsp Honolulu
50% &nbsp&nbsp&nbsp Los Angeles
45% &nbsp&nbsp&nbsp Atlanta

If you want to take this quiz give this URL a spin.



Why Aren’t People Going to The Movies?

27 05 2005

There’s an article in the New York Times today about the decline in movie attendance. It seems that, over the last 13 weeks, attendance is down compared to the same 13 weeks last year. Not even STAR WARS 3 could turn that trend around and I’m willing to bet that MADAGASCAR and THE LONGEST YARD don’t really turn that trend around.

There’s lots of talk in the article about how cable, DVDs and video games are pulling audiences away from the movie theatres, along with high prices of tickets, parking and babysitters. The best comment, however, comes from Amy Pascal, identified as the “chairwoman” of Sony Pictures. She says:

“We can give ourselves every excuse for people not showing up – change in population, the demographic, sequels, this and that – but people just want good movies.”

It’s real easy to dump on Hollywood, for lack of imagination and a plethora of sequels.

Easy, but true.

However, it remains to be seen if the lemming-like, moronic movie-going American public is willing to put their increasingly meager disposable income into better movies. I don’t see it.



Film Blast From The Not-Too-Distant Past

26 05 2005

Cory reminded me, in his comments today, of some of the work that many of us did in our Intermediate Editing class and some of the footage that we all worked on (Okay, okay, I’ll be honest — some of the footage that you all worked on).

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I was reading IMDB news this morning (okay, the gossipy celebrity part) when i was reminded of a great film from editing class, the immortal TOO YOUNG TO DIE or as Norm often put it, TOO YOUNG TO DIE?

The answer after three semesters is, “No, no not really.”

That poor chubby guy from LA LAW. He was really trying very hard with his bad accent and little bow tie. Still we all mercilessly cut that one line (You sure do look pretty in that dress…) to make him look like the creepy biycle shop owner from that very special episode of DIFFERENT STROKES (Dudley! Don’t take off your shirt!)

Other immortal lines from editing class:

NYPD BLUE:
– What are you? Circus cop?
– Yeah, yeah that’s me, flying James Martinez!
JUST LOOKING:
– He’s a flaming asshole!
CRIMSON TIDE:
– Zero bubble, mark your depth.
DALLAS:
– Jessie, you can come out now.
And, of course, Remy from YOUNG INDIANA JONES (as he hit a Nazi with a stick):
– No, we do not!

Worst sidekick ever. We did have a lot of fun though. The semester i was in that class was one of the best groups of people and the most fun classroom experience I had at SC. Marc, Amelia, Sara G., Tracee, Dzuban, Ron, John Paul, Liz, Jeremy and Heather, looking back, it really was a talented group.

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By the way, this happens on almost every film I’ve ever worked on. One or two lines (or character reactions) gets to attain mythic status in the editing room and is endlessly quoted or mimicked.