Friday, November 30, 2012

Film Festival Friday: November 30, 2012

I realize that I had two double-feature days this past week!  And I spent more time in the theater this past Saturday watching movies than the rest of the entire year ("The Avengers" notwithstanding!).

We did a double-date lunch and a movie with one of my cousins on Saturday.  After an underwhelming lunch at The Essex Bakery and Cafe, we braved the crowds and went to see "Skyfall".

Currently #108 on my flickchart list
I did enjoy the movie but I struggle with it as a "Bond" flick in general and this new "realistic" Bond in particular.  I am an unabashed fan of Pierce Brosnan.  I am fine with the quips and gadgets of the past.  There was not enough "secret agent double O-7" in this.  And the villain seemed to harken back to the Roger Moore era.  But all in all, it was a satisfying "man movie".

When we went to pick up our kids, both Lars and I thought there was a chance our only cousin-in-common would be free and interested in seeing "Red Dawn".  When Lee proved to be unavailable  perhaps saving himself for a guy's night of "Jack Reacher", Lars and I went ahead on our own.

Currently #214 on my flickchart
A fun, if predictable, updating of the movie from my youth.  It hit all the right notes and most of the cast was pretty good.  I continue to enjoy Chris Hemworth's non-Thor roles and Josh Hutcherson hasn't disappointed me yet.  The secondary lead, Josh Peck, is a former child actor trying to get his bearings.  He left me slightly under-impressed.

Yesterday, while I was recovering from my night out, I hit Redbox for two different sort of movies.

Safe House
Currently #91 on my flickchart list
I had intended to watch "Quantum of Solace", which Lars had loaned me, but saw this when I went to rent my second feature.  I always enjoy Denzel Washington and he did not let me down here.  It had a certain gritty-realism and believe-ability.  My next movie...not so much.

Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter
Currently #199 on my flickchart list

Nan and Wikes went to see "Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter" during a Girls' Night Out when it opened.  It had piqued my interest and I zeroed in on it for my day off once I scheduled it.  So I toasted up my Stouffers French Bread Pizza (my work day off staple) and popped this one in.

I got what I expected...a fun romp that takes it self just seriously enough (in terms of characters and acting....not so much the action, especially the horse stamped scene!)

Thursday, November 29, 2012

"I'm getting too old for this shi----"

I'm taking a personal day today to recover from last night.  While it was a fun, alcohol-free evening....I knew I'd feel worse today than an all-day bender!

Last night I gave my daughter her birthday present.  Originally, her present was to be a day off from school for both of us, but my request was denied.  Feeling guilty, when she texted me one morning that her favorite performer would be in town in November, I jumped on it.  Three tickets for the all ages show, me, her and her friend.  Last night was the event.

I was reticent at first....I am not a fan of live music....I expected a night of patchouli oil and the aroma of marijuana clinging to clothes....I expected lots of angst....screaming kids....

While there were some doses of angst and the younger fans seemed to scream a lot, it was a whole lot of fun.

The night started shaky....I was late leaving school and when we arrived for our "meet and greet" with one of the acts, no one knew anything about it.  Once we got in, the girls went down to the floor and I staked out a spot in the grown up zone and settled in.

The first band was called Me Like Bees.  They are described as an indie/alternative rock band from Joplin, Missouri.  They really were a good rock act.  They have a song called "Naked Trees" which is catchy and moving.  They wrote it after the tornadoes devastated their hometown in 2011.

I chatted with most of the band members after the show.  They seemed like a friendly bunch of guys.  I bought Logan one of their CDs and a t-shirt for Haley to give him for Christmas.

Next was the act with whom my daughter is currently enamored.  MOD SUN is an EXTREMELY laid back, self-described hippie rapper from Minnesota.  

I am NOT this man's target audience but he was infectiously fun.  He has a very positive outlook despite a pro-drug message that I am not on board with.  That being said I found I had a big grin on my face the entire time he performed.

We met him after the show.  He was very gregarious with his friends (he has no fans...everyone is his friend).  We also met his DJ, Pat Brown.  My daughter knew him and really wanted to meet him.  He, too, was very friendly.  Specifically thanked me for bringing the girls, commenting that it was his father's support that allowed him to get where he was today.  I was impressed.

The next band was the self-proclaimed defenders of pop punk, Man Overboard from New Jersey.  They were LOUD!  An interesting line up of performers with two guys taking lead on the vocal.  They had a loyal following in the room and played to the crowd!

The last act of the night was the headliners, Never Shout Never.  These guys were my daughter's big thing for a while but she had cooled on them of late.  The have had some "chart" success and had a song on the Tim Burton "Alice in Wonderland" soundtrack. 

They definitely gave the kids the show they were looking for.  Lead singer, Cristofer Drew, made a Jim Gaffigan reference which earned him some props from me.  I kept expecting him to say "Dave's not here, man" which, if you get the reference, tells you his state of mind for the night.

He had a funny banter going with the crowd.  His main instruments were his guitar and ukulele  switching back and forth between each song.  At one point, a girl called out that she was learning the ukulele.  Drew pulled her up on stage and let her perform a song she had just written.  The crowd supported her and the band tried to flesh out the song with her.  She was nervous but it was a really sweet moment.  The girls told me after that she goes to their school.  We saw her on the way out and congratulated her for her effort.

All in all, worth the time and money spent, the headache today and the use of one of my precious personal days!

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

The votes have been counted...

I was so pleased by the suggested names for this blog...especially when I hadn't any idea of where to go with a title on my own.

My wife and I batted the suggestions back and forth over the Thanksgiving Break and settled on Bubba Shelby's suggestion for several reasons....

But first, the others were all so good....Nan liked the wordplay that The Armchair Squid came up with and I am seriously thinking of changing my on-line persona to Tony's suggestion but in the end....

I realize everybody's blog is their outlet.  Some of you are so well organized and so well written.  My little corner of the "world wide web" is a place for you to check in with what is going on with find out "what's up"....

I also like the Looney Tunes connection.  The cartoons where a staple growing up and remain a favorite to this day.

And lastly, an unexpected connection.

Before we got married, my wife and I lived with my grandparents for a year.  Each winter my grandparents went to Florida for several months.  Before their last trip together, my grandfather spent a night with us going through a box of photographs from his time in World War II....from training camp to his posting to his capture and his liberation.  It was an incredible evening that brings tears to my eyes as I type this.

We ended the night with his sharing everyone's nicknames...they all had nicknames.  I asked his.  He told me "They called me Doc."  I asked why...eager to hear another story and curious about the origins...excited for more insight into this man I admired so much.

"It rhymed with Mock...they weren't very clever."

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

"The time has come," the Walrus said, "To talk of many things..."

I've been meaning to pull out the laptop or fire up the desktop this week and get to this post.

It is time for me to change the name of this blog.  I was stuck when creating this blog to name it...something.   I am of the age where Star Wars, for the longest time, was three movies, a Holiday Special, and loads of toys.  I was tickled Marc got the "joke" behind the title way back when, but it never really resonated with me.  Smacky once commented how his wife couldn't find something I posted because the url didn't match the title of the blog.

The title was always generic enough that I never could find myself with Google Alerts or what not.

And now with so much Star Wars in the news for some reason, Tim Knight at Hero Press has announced a Star Wars themed blog with the same title...

So I will spend the next few days trying to think of something clever....

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Happy Odin's Day!

Thursday, November 1, 2012


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