recent books and films

Working where I do, I find myself in a situation similiar to that of a job I had previously: a breakroom where I can sit and read if I end up at work early as well as during my lunchbreak.

+ I somehow managed to get through Bentley Little’s “The Resort” but have only managed to get about 50 pages into his “The Town” before giving up completely. I know set themes are there, but it really grates my nerves if it shows up almost every other paragraph (it seemed like it showed up every other paragraph, I’m not sure if it actually does).

+ I started reading Dave Tate’s books: “Under the Bar” and “Raising the Bar.” Reading through “Under the Bar,” I started getting fairly annoyed with the constant reference to under the bar, but it’s part of his thing and I started on “Raising the Bar,” read a few pages, and just haven’t gone back yet. For the most part, it’s to help find drive, ambition, etc in every aspect of your life–he just happens to write about his thing (powerlifting) but all of the stuff he writes about can be put to use in other parts. Brilliant guy and Jamie orders from his website every so often.

+ I finished “A Feast for Crows” by GRRM and found that I plowed through it reasonably fast after the first few chapters. I know I have to read “Dance with Dragons” but I just haven’t gotten there yet (and that’s a book I don’t want to take to work because it’s the hardback copy)

+ After about a year or so of having Joe Hill’s “Horns,” I am finally reading it. I am really enjoying the novel so far and I’m finding it better than “Heart-Shaped Box.” However, reading this books firmly roots in my mind that Joe Hill is: a great author with a really fucked up imagination, and I applaud him for that. I figure, if I get the opportunity to get his next book, I will definitely find a way to buy it.

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Now that I’m working a bit more than I was previously, I’m not watching as many films as I was. However, I have managed to get a few in. I am also planning on doing actual film reviews for them, but I don’t want to right now::

+ I have watched and re-watched quite a few comedy specials. Bill Engvall, Christopher Titus, George Carlin, Russell Peters. They’re fun to listen to while I’m doing things like knitting and I don’t have to pay attention to the screen.

+ Paranormal Incident: which I found rather decent. Sure, it was a bit cheesy and the whole “found footage” thing is getting kind of old, it was done fairly well and I kept thinking of The X-Files, The Lone Gunmen (especially Byers), with a hint of MIB and covert military operations mixed in.

+ Hidden (aka: Hidden 3D): I thought was pretty cool. It was a neat idea, the CGI was really well done, the story was cool, but there were just little things that bugged me–not enough to ruin the film, but enough to go “wtf” for a moment. And hey, killer fireflies.

+ The Wickeds: This is toted as “group of college co-eds go to an abandoned house that is reportedly haunted” if you hover over the photo on Netflix. The page continues the description with “and meet up with a couple graverobbers who are being chased by zombies.” This is a terrible movie. It was like they didn’t know if they were going to make a cheesy horror movie on purpose (to make fun of cheesy horror movies) or if they were going to go for a soft-core porn with a hint of cheesy horror movie. It was scene with zombies, cut to makeout, back to the group of kids, cut to makeout. There is a lot of things I found wrong with this and I only made it through 28 minutes.

+ Ai Weiwei: Never Sorry:: Documentary about a Chinese artist. I had recognized his name from somewhere and later found out why: it’s the guy who did the sunflower seed exhibit. It’s a fascinating documentary about him and I really enjoyed it (he also has 40 cats, one of which can open doors)

+ ParaNorman: a kid can see ghosts, gets told he’s the only one who can save the town from the witch’s curse, and the people who accused the witch come back from the dead (aka: really goofy zombies). The townspeople wreck havoc and it turns into a mushy story about accepting everyone no matter how different they are. The stop-motion animation was pretty awesome, but I think I’ll stick with Coraline.

+ Detropia: a really sad documentary about the collapse of Detroit and the recession. It shows the reality of how everyone’s leaving Detroit, the problems that the automotive industry faced, and how some people tried to keep positive throughout the whole thing. It was a fascinating documentary.

+ Watched a bunch of Eureka and finally gave the new MLP a chance and ended up watching like 6 or 8 episodes. Watched the Bobcat Goldthwait stand up (“You Don’t Look The Same Either”) and found that I like this Bobcat more than I like old Bobcat. Watched a bunch of old cartoons (Grim Adventures, PPG, Cow and Chicken, Dexter’s Lab) because I’m a dork and it was available.

+ The Borrowers: Is adorable. It’s got Rory Pond’s dad as the exterminator (Doctor Who reference) and then I realized it was Arthur Weasley too before I cracked up when I saw Hugh Laurie. I enjoyed it.

+ Big Fish: A guy goes through his dad’s stuff because his dad is dying and is determined to find the truth behind his tall tales. It’s a fascinating movie and really fucking sad at the end, which I wasn’t expecting

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And now I’m going to stop because Jamie and I are going to play a round of Mario Party. I’m sure I’ll come up with more ideas of things to make (like the little germ guys from Dr Mario), but for now, a cheesy game that involves Yoshi shaking his tale and Wario getting points taken away when I hit a bad spot sounds a whole lot more fun.

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