Half a Month There on Foot

You will find me at the corner of Speed and Power

Wednesday, May 31, 2006

Happy Summer Time Fun Show

Alright, the two accurate words in that headline are "Summer" and "Show." Dennis Leary and Peter Tolan's Rescue Me kicked off the third season on the FX Network last night, and you should do yourself a favor and watch the 13-episode season. The series got off track last year, and has the potential to collapse under the weight of its large cast and B, C, D, E, and oh yeah, F and G plots, but damn it's funny and tragic and angry, and ultimately compelling.

Be advised, there's lots of swearing, lots of sex, and an equal number of adult and juvenile themes (did I mention anger?). All these elements work the way they're supposed to work (most of the time) and a show about some of the most tragic human beings on the planets is one of the funniest and brutally honest.

If you have a chance, I like the first season over the second. Of course, it's a linear story so the second is kind of necessary for the overall story. The first episode has one of my favorite end sequences ever, even if it sets up the "music montage" trend the series continues through the latter episodes.

Great writing (usually) and a great cast. And it's got some of the best cold opens I've ever seen. So set the TiVo, figure out when the reruns air, and watch Dennis Leary self-destruct. You'll almost forget he did Demolition Man. Almost.

Tuesday, May 30, 2006

I still want a retconned Rosario Dawson as TC

Ah, Tom Selleck, why don't they leave well enough alone?

"Selleck Dashes "Magnum" Hopes"

Monday, May 29, 2006

In honor of summer

Here's a piece from the bestus director ever, Micheal Bay. It was originally published in The Onion:

"What Has Our Society Come To When March Of The Penguins Is The Blockbuster Hit Of The Summer?

I've been a major Hollywood director for a long time, and I thought I'd seen it all. But I can't help wondering what's happening to the entertainment industry—indeed, to our entire society. Where are our standards? Our values? For fuck's sake—our cultural priorities? I simply cannot accept that March Of The Penguins is the big summer hit everybody's talking about. Hello?

It used to be that a summer blockbuster had to have brutal violence, sexy women, breathtaking action sequences, adrenaline-pumping high-speed chases—at a bare minimum, some explosions. But sitting through that penguin movie, I couldn't believe my eyes. Where were the big set pieces? Hell, this movie didn't even have sets! Has anyone ever heard of production values? It's one of the most vital aspects of the filmmaking art, and you don't get it by just showing up on an iceberg and filming whatever happens to be in front of you. Frankly, for real icebergs, they looked fake. This film is an insult to the great men and women who spend countless hours in front of computers creating incredibly realistic CGI icebergs.

Does no one out there care about these things anymore but me? Am I a lone voice of sanity crying out in a universe gone mad?

What kind of a world do we live in when a futuristic techno-thriller starring Ewan McGregor and Scarlett Johansson as escaped clones on levitating jet bikes doesn't outgross the shit out of a glorified Discovery Channel rerun? Don't people realize how much money I spent? How many people it took to bring that vision to the screen? Do people realize how many rewrites and punch-ups we went through? I paid my writers millions of dollars, and they were some of the best in the biz. You know who wrote their script? A bunch of birds.

Where was the villain? A story's not going to keep an audience on the edge of their seats without a strong opposition. Where was the second-act turning point? You've gotta have that moment when the hero's at the end of his rope and the bad guy looks like he's going to win it all. And where was the love story? Stars have to have real chemistry that smolders on the screen to make a summer blockbuster one to remember. Okay, the penguin movie had mating cycles, but that's not love. Is it all about sex to these animals?

Speaking of which, I think we can all agree that the penguins in this film gave some pretty wooden performances. In many scenes, it was impossible to tell them apart. Maybe if they'd moved the camera once in a while, I could have gotten more emotionally invested in what was going on. For Christ's sake, there was not a single crane shot in the whole movie!

I remember a day when the public appreciated fine cinema. In that lost age, it made sense that my important historical drama Pearl Harbor had a fighting chance for at least a special-effects Oscar. Best sound, no question. But now, in this crazy upside-down, topsy-turvy world, I hear that—guess what?—the only summer movie getting any Oscar buzz is a static, near-silent documentary about waddling, flightless birds!

These days, I guess old-fashioned values like "megawattage," "high-octane thrill rides," and "explosions" just don't matter anymore. Well, I call that a sad day for American moviemaking.

I'm busy in pre-production planning my next big spectacle (which no one will see because they'll be off watching a 10-hour documentary on park squirrels, no doubt). But if you are in the San Diego area, do me this favor: Go to Sea World, walk into the emperor-penguin exhibit, and punch one those fuckers right in the face. Tell 'em Michael Bay sent ya."

God bless you Micheal Bay, and thank you for all the explosions, bad physics, and paper-thin plots.

Saturday, May 27, 2006

X-Men 3 OR I smell a Ratner

A few random thoughts on X-Men 3: The Last Stand:

The comic dork side of me:
- wait, what?
- I'm sorry, that guy did what now? Really?
- yeah, I don't think that's a good character arc...

The movie dork side of me:
- wait, what?
- I'm sorry, that guy did what now? Really?
- yeah, I don't think that's a good char... eh, you get the point.

The movie was... not the worse thing ever. But not any where near the caliber of the other two movies. Or a good movie.

Amy fell asleep, how's that? I was bored. I checked my watch a lot. I felt bad for the following actors having to say tepid dialouge to move along a lackluster story: Patrick Stewart, Halle Berry, Hugh Jackman, That Guy Who Plays Cyclops, Ian McKellen, Famke Janssen, Vinnie Jones (he seemed to like it all okay though), Kelsey Grammer, and everybody else.

It was just... bad. The action wasn't even good. I expected at least the action sequences to be good.

I'm too disjointed to be too coherent, but that's okay, I saw X-Men 3, so I'm in good company.

Friday, May 26, 2006

I know my dreams are of electric sheep...

This is cool: "25 years on, "Blade Runner" will finally be seen as it should have been from the beginning. After years of legal issues and skirmishes, Warner Bros. has managed to sort out all the problems and is aiming for a September reissue of the remastered "Director's Cut" version, followed by a theatrical release of a version promised to be truly Ridley Scott's final cut reports Variety."

I remember the first time I saw Blade Runner and realized Harrison Ford wasn't just Han Solo. If I didn't have a headache I'd tell you how a parody drawing from Cracked magazine sealed the deal with me understanding that I'd never be an artist, but could be content with having other video professionals mock my shot thumbnails.

What a great flick.

Pseudo Vacation

I've been kinda out of town. Sorta. And now I'm back. So there.

Friday, May 19, 2006

Oh grandpa, no

The BEST review of a comic book story ever. Ever.

Tuesday, May 16, 2006

Hubba hubba!

Woah. Who's the new girl?

That's right, 2GHz Intel Core Duo power, $1299. Hotcha!

Monday, May 15, 2006

Studio 60

Next season officially brings us a new Aaron Sorkin/Tommy Schlamme show Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip. There's a short promo that ran during the series finale of The West Wing that can be found here.

CNN reports the Sorkin/Schlamme show will go up against the Tina Fey show that's similar, but with Alec Baldwin. So there.

Can we change carriers now? Good.

Mr. Neil "I Wear My Sunglasses at Night" Gaiman tells a great (well, not great for him at the time) story about getting MCIed by MCI and switching carriers. And he linked to this directory of inexpensive long distance carriers.

Thanks Neil Gaiman, for having to call overseas.

Saturday, May 13, 2006

Cinecast confessions

In honor of the name change of Cinecast and their 100th episode, my Top 5 Movies I Haven't Seen But Really Should:

5. Close Encounters of the Third Kind
4. Raging Bull
3. Animal House
2. Weird Science
1. Lawrence of Arabia

Not for sure that's the order, but that's kinda my priority for seeing 'em. Yeah, and you know what, you go out and watch Brazil or Seven Samurai before you come bitching to me about Raging Bull or Animal House.

And if you're not listening to Cinecast, give it a try. You like movies, and so do these guys. They're smart, professional, and a lot looser than when they started. C'mon, Sam is the production manager for This American Life and you know they gotta hire people that know what they're doing.

If no one's on your canvas/I'm achin' to be

Okay, Spin called you the most important artist of the decade. You've hit a period of high output in your career, and AOL pays you to perform some of your songs. And of course you don't remember your own words. Because, you know, rock and roll.

Achin' to Be, AOL sessions

Stay for the bit after the credits, come for the acoustic set.

Friday, May 12, 2006

A very doggy Mother's Day

This isn't my mom, she's Amy's "Mother."

The dogs are sometimes mine. Mostly. I just love their posing.

Thursday, May 11, 2006


I'm totally that guy posting the links to things and then animal pictures.


Joe(y) and Monkey

Check out Joe and Monkey and remember how much fun it would be if I had a monkey.

I'd have him bathe Puppy Puddles.

Wednesday, May 10, 2006

Ask a Ninja

I had CaNinja questions and they have been answered.

I am ninja, you are ninja, but really, he's the ninja.

Tuesday, May 09, 2006

Blane Check

Street magician turned "stuntman" still unintentionally mockable? Check.

Sunday, May 07, 2006


New stuff from the past week:

- edit room construction at work
- free comics from the very excellent free comic book day
- brush for the damn hairiest damn dog on the damn planet
- everyday shoes, a fine pair of New Balances
- socks, also New Balances
- lease on life, thanks to a rowdy bunch of hard cases and raggamuffins

Friday, May 05, 2006

La Petite Ecole

Digico just launched a new site today for our client The International School of Charlottesville. I think it's pretty spiffy. Jeremy did it.

Thursday, May 04, 2006

I am not a remake

Well, this is a surprise.

There's a part of me that really likes Chris Eccleston doing ANY role, but this... this is like somebody trying to update your first crush. This is somebody reaching into your head saying "I'm going to write over the first moment, that fleeting instant you felt the cosmic tumblers align. Because, you know, I can."

Wednesday, May 03, 2006

Betrailered Park 3 UPDATED

Not trying to get in the habit of moving stuff around so it's not reposted up here, but the Sky Captain Betrailered Park is updated with some (slight) coherence and a purty picther.

Tuesday, May 02, 2006

This Saturday, get some... FREE

This Saturday is Free Comic Book Day. You can go to your local comic store and get free comics. Could there be a much better holiday than that? FREE COMICS. FREE.

We're talking Simpsons, Star Wars, Conan, Scott Pilgrim, and the best comic you may ever read in the history of ever: Owly.

C'mon, he's a little owl who loves! "These stories will appeal to anyone who has ever experienced loneliness, heartache, true friendship or the sense of achievement one experiences when overcoming obstacles to do the right thing." Go get a copy, give it to a kid. Or your mom. Or your boss. It's Owly. And Free Comic Book Day.

Everything is better on a Mac, even your mom

Awesome. And true. I wouldn't say it to you if I didn't believe it. Because it's true. Stop living in 1975 and get with the good stuff.

Betrailered Park, part 3: Sky Joey and the World of Tomorrow

I remember the first time I read Mark Waid's dedication of Kingdom Come, his wildly successful collaboration with Alex Ross. It reads "To Elliot S! Maggin, who gave me x-ray eyes and taught me to fly."

In a book ripe with "Oh. My. God." moments, with iconic images used far and wide in popular culture, small moments with world-destroying consequences ("And when the Seven Thunders had uttered their voices, I was about to write: and I heard a voice from heaven saying unto me, "Seal up those things which the Seven Thunders uttered, and write them not,") Mark Waid pointed to one of the writers who inspired him and said "Blame this guy. He showed me a world of possiblity."

The first time I saw the trailer for Sky Captain and the World of Tomorrow I became a boy of twelve. Not yet cynical, not yet "adult." There were ray guns! There were hot dames! There were swashbuckling swashbucklers! And giant robots!

The old man me was astonished by the behind-the-scenes: a guy working alone using his home computers to make a demo to get the money to have work on a feature movie. The sets, entirely virtual. And that feature movie had a "name" cast of people I could tolerate watching kinda!

You know how these go. I saw the movie, and it's "eh." It feels almost too manufactured. The look of the movie, and maybe it's a limitation of the virtual tech melding with the reality, the look is just "off." Not stylistic choices, but the real look of the movie. And that's a hard miss to reconcile.

The direction is kinda off too. I can't blame the guy, Kerry Conran, because he really has accomplished something. It's his first feature, and if anything it's a pretty ambitious movie.

The story is so-so. It's grade B, but that could be okay. You know, if the movie was even more grade B, it might've been okay. There's a joy to the movie, but it also feels manufactured. And, duh, movies are "manufactured" entertainment. But there should be more joy there.

Don't get me wrong, I actually own a copy of Sky Captain on the DVD. I haven't watched the features yet, but a lot of times it's more important to know what went wrong than right, what works and what doesn't. Sky Captain was something that could have been really really good entertainment, but fell short. Sometimes you gotta aim high for that "other world," and, like with everything, the possiblity is failure.