Thursday, October 21, 2004

American Splendor -review-

I actually saw this movie on cable which is a rarity for me considering I only put the TV on as background noise and the only show that can have me stopping for anything is Smallville.

Yeah, I know, pathetic.

The thing that I really enjoyed about this film was not only that it was well-put together with some fine actors but I truly enjoyed the interaction of all the characters. With bits of documentary footage thrown in with numerous slides of the actual comic, it made for a really interesting montage of this person's life.

Favorite parts of the film had to be when the actors (Paul Giamatti and crew) would wrap up a scene and walk off the set to speak to the actual people they were portraying, which in this case would be, Harvey Pekar, the genius who came up with the stories behind American Splendor.

Working with great artists, most famously, Robert Crumb (played by a kinda creepy James Urbaniak), you can almost see how two such odd individuals could get along so well.

Pekar gave this country something to laugh about and let the "every guy" in America know that they were not alone in their ordinary lives. I remember my dad reading this comic and I would see him grin probably for the first time that day. I know that as a blue collar worker he was happy to see things in his life drawn out for the world to see, and able to find the good spot in all of it.

Life in the Pekar household must have been a trip, and we see glimpses of that life through his current wife. You get to see all the ups and downs and phobias that would drive any normal person up the wall...and Pekar was pretty bad, too.

I think I would have killed his wife if I had been married to her.

Pekar is able to grab the most mundane things in his life and tell a story about it, people don't realize how valuable that kind of talent is, it's rare.

Alot of enjoyment came from seeing how the world was back in those days, since it takes place in the late 70's and works into the 80's and beyond, you kind of get to relive your childhood, even if it happens to be through a borderline schizoid, who is uncouth and slightly unhygenic.

Unless you are just an old fart and can't relate.

I think the only parts I hated were when he would go on David Letterman's show and be seen as some sort of idiot savant or really burned my ass, and it made me dislike the snarky Letterman even more than I already did.

Anyway, in closing, if you hadn't caught this movie when it was out last year, you should really rent it. It's a bit disturbing and can be dark at times, but the cast is so wonderful and odd, that you forget about all of that, and truly enjoy the funniness of Pekar's world.

Wednesday, October 20, 2004

Silent Hill 4 : The Room -game review-

I haven't done a game review but for a minute, so how about one?

I knew you would be happy about that.

While not a perfect game, Silent Hill 4 is quite enjoyable and it has such good scary pinpoints that you can't help but become quickly addicted. I really was happy that they kept the same feeling from the past games in this one.

I mean as I am writing this, I am thinking about playing it.

You start out waking up from a "dream" and you see the first-person perspective that will eventually scare the beejesus out of you since you can't see behind you right away. This makes for great gameplay because it obviously is catering to the idea that it is you playing it, even though there is a character that will be developed.

I haven't gotten that far but the 1st-perspective view does quickly change to a 3rd person view when you go into the outside world, i.e. the nightmare world, so the controls are a little harder to handle, but I would say that given the cool graphics and eerie feeling that you will start off slow just viewing your surroundings and it takes about 15 mins or so to adjust.

I never played Silent Hill on a PC before so this version was rather fun to learn how to play (with a keyboard and all) and I am finding it more enjoyable than the console versions.

A brief synopsis of the game:

"Silent Hill is a town where pure evil permeates the air and the soil and eventually consumes the people. It's a soothing vacation spot that masks demon-worshipping cults and dark purpose. Each of the previous titles in the Silent Hill series of horror games has either outright taken place in the titular small town or has gradually been pulled there through some terrible inertia. Silent Hill 4: The Room breaks this trend, because it takes place in the neighboring city of South Ashfield and centers mainly on an ill-fated apartment building, a cursed apartment, and the man who lives in it. That's not the only series tenet the game breaks. Silent Hill 4 pairs third-person and new first-person gameplay with an emphasis on combat and item management. The resultant hybrid has some flaws, but The Room retains the dark, disturbing soul that is the unsettling center of the Silent Hill experience.

I wanted to mention lastly that the main character, Henry, is just too cute, for a drawn caricature, that is.

I need to get out more, I think.

Team America: World Police -review-

Team America: World Police I am pretty sure could have been one of my favorite movies. I mean I loved South Park, The Movie, but obviously these two films only have one thing in common, the creators.

Trey Parker and Matt Stone must have been rushing on this film because I found myself at times between laughter & idly twiddling my cigaretteless fingers and wondering how this went so wrong.

I adored the puppets but I found them so creepy and personable that I actually would avert my eyes so that I wouldn't make any eye contact...with the screen...yeah...that.

The puppets should have been used in the Thunderbirds remake, and they could have actually used real people for this movie, sort of like the Spy Hard movies. I think it would have been really funny.

I laughed alot but on the whole I was bored.

Lots of spoofs regarding politics and Osama (not Omarosa, even though that would have been hilarious) and America being the "police" of the world, hence the title, and puppet sex...oh, the puppet sex.

That was very interesting to watch, the splendor of spindly limbs and no sexual organs can be down right disturbing, I must say.

As soon as "it" was over, I rolled over and went to bed.

I have to ask someone, anyone is it really possible that the last good review that I gave without fault was a zombie movie?

I officially now know that movies can only get better, because after this week's movie watching, it possibly cannot get any worse.

Or can it?

for those not wanting to click the link above, I am talking about Birth with Nicole Kidman...lord, that movie looks relatively dumb and uninsightful to say the least, but what do I know.

Tuesday, October 19, 2004

Taxi -review-

Luc Besson is one of my favorite sci-fi/fantasy/ultra-modern directors, but I have to genuinely say that this movie, blew chunks.

The image above would sufficiently reflect my agony at watching this film.

Taxi, starring Queen Latifah and Jimmy Fallon, is a parody in movie making.

I was really excited at Latifah's souped up taxi, reminded me of The Fifth Element (a junkie fave of mine by Besson) and I really liked the clothing and look of the movie. But overall, it was just one big mess of a bungling cop teamed up with a smart-ass funny black "person", chasing of all things, robbers who happen to be runway fashion models.


If I can just go one day without the thrusting of fashionista pelvic bones, I would be in heaven.

I think the only part that really got me was when Fallon was swinging his gun around and Latifah is cringing...I was hoping that the gun would go off and blow his brains out.

I am sure she was hoping the same thing.

I love Fallon in skits (SNL) and even on MTV award shows, but for the love of god, do not, I REPEAT, do not go see this movie.