Life's our oyster and we're gonna suck that bitch down with a champagne chaser.

  • Behavioral Therapist
  • MA Developmental Psychology, Columbia
  • BS Psychobiology/ French, UCLA

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    A Dangerous Method

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    The Life & Times of Tim

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    by George R.R. Martin

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Thursday, February 26, 2009  
The Top Tens of 2008: Part 1
I tend to procrastinate. Anyone who knows me will attest to that...although I don't know why you'd be talking to someone else about my procrastination predispositions. Ignore the fact that this list should have come out just after the new year, as I intended to publish it before the Academy Award...because I don't want to feel like I'm taking away attention from the Oscars. For those of you who read last July's post know that I covered part of my favorite movies of 2008 due to the 7 month delay in putting out that damn list. Regardless, to make up for my delay I have added a brand new feature to my Top Ten Lists...which will be revealed in about 3 scrolls of your mouse. But first, the (semi) annual tradition.

Top Ten Movies of 2008

10. WALL-E

Few movies can entertain as much with so few lines of dialogue and such a bleak vision of the future of the United Nations of KFC. And to top it all off, a sweet love story between two robots. The fact that the only words that they utter are each other's names is adorable all on its own.


From a bleak future of earth, to a bleak portrait of marriage. I have to say, if you're thinking about getting married anytime soon, don't see this movie because it is almost as if the book's author and the director, Sam Mendes, who is coincidentally married to one of the film's stars Kate Winslet, want no one to get married ever. It also could be a metaphor for the delusion of the American Dream...but seriously, it's about marriage sucking.

Some divorce stats for the kids:
Under 20 years old27.6%11.7%
20 to 24 years old36.6%38.8%
25 to 29 years old16.4%22.3%
30 to 34 years old8.5%11.6%
35 to 39 years old5.1%6.5%


I'm not sure if I should be ashamed to say that the boy-on-boy kissing was a little too much on display for my liking, and was not balanced by girl-on-girl kissing, but this was still a well-acted biopic. Some people may have disapproved of Sean Penn for taking his homemade soapbox to the Oscars with him, but I beg to differ. Why are people hatin' on the gays? They should have the opportunity to be miserable just like everyone else. (See review above)


Not one of you saw this movie. Why? Because it's in French and has subtitles. And you know what? I'm not going to tell you the plot, because that would force you to go look this up on Netflix and potentially add it to your queue. So, I'll wait for you to do that.


I did have to watch this movie twice in one night, or rather I chose to, to truly appreciate its subtle humor interlaced with its mob movie themes, and it was worth it. Bruges excursion anyone?


Robert Downey Jr. is my current favorite actor. While I didn't like Tropic Thunder nearly as much as a lot of people did, he was amazing in it. And to add to that my status as comic book geek and action movie aficionado, this was an amazing combination of the two. Bring on The Avengers and Iron Man 2, please.

Have you guys looked up Tell No One yet? Ok I'll tell you this's a thriller/mystery.


Yes, Bill Maher was a prick at the Oscars, but that's who he is. And guess what? He was right. Why wasn't this movie nominated for best documentary? It's because religion is the most taboo subject in this country. More than politics. More than peanut butter. Sure he gets a little grim towards the end but this is a hilariously entertaining and thought-provoking movie. One thing is for sure, you will be talking about it when you finish watching it, whether you loved it or hated it.


I would have personally renamed this movie Clint Eastwood: The Movie, because that crotchety old man persona makes this movie. The racial slurs, the growls, the old man heroism, is just a blast to watch and turns out to be heart-warming in the end. Who woulda thunk?


This movie really should be tied for first but I'll be a man and assign it to second. This is the first comic book movie that mainstreams the superhero into a real-world, grim, dark setting. This isn't bat-nipple, Batman or Robin in a green speedo, Batman. This is Batman as the crime-fighter and the Joker as a serial killer, terrorist as he would be in reality. Heath Ledger's portrayal of the Joker is the best on-screen performance I have seen in a while.


I know it killed at the Oscars, but it completely deserved it. The questions on the show which shaped Jamal's experience in the decrepit slums of Mumbai is a great frame to the movie's overall plot. And those Indian kids are adorable. It also has a bitchin' soundtrack, the lyrics of which I understand 0% of, including the tracks by M.I.A. There is also talk of a revival of "Who Wants to be a Millionaire," which may be a good or bad thing, depending on how long you've been a member of AARP.

Now comes the new feature of this post...the Top Five Guilty Pleasure Movies of 2008. This list consists of mostly terrible movies, but that are so entertaining, they come around the spectrum of being awful and are amazing.

Top Five Guilty Pleasure Movies of 2008


Anakin Skywalker can teleport and so can some other dudes. Some are good some are bad. Anakin whines a little bit while he's teleporting then fights like a girl. Also, Samuel L. Jackson is in it and looks like this:


This movie was more "not bad" than it was "not good" which makes it a winner in my guilty pleasure book. Will Smith in all of his narcissistic glory is an alcoholic superhero with every superpower known to man who's the last of his kind...or is he? That spells suspense...if suspense was spelled "suckspense."


There's a kid who just moved to a new town and a new high school. But not only does he have to deal with the pressures of your typical teenager...there's an underground fight club to add to it. Djimon Hounsou shows up as the stereotypical sage black guy, a la Bagger Vance, and helps train this kid...but only if he fights for good, and not for evil. Spoiler alert: the kid beats up the douchey bully from The OC at the end.


There's a mysterious monster in New York, which is actually a backlot in Los Angeles, and dumb kids running around with a camcorder. Imagine Friday the 13th where Jason is a giant monster and the idiot kids, who are a staple of scary movies, have a camcorder and it's less gory and way more entertaining. Be warned, you might have motion sickness by the end of the movie. Also, my girlfriend clung to me whenever she was scared while watching the movie, which was often, so that was good.


You've all seen the trailers. The guy from The Transporter movies is in the future...where they are forced to participate in televised death races. When the hero of those races dies, Jason Statham must step in to take his place...but there's more to these races than meets the eye...where what meets the eye is a Mustang strapped with grenade launchers, machine guns and spike launchers. I need only sum up this movie with my favorite line from any movie ever, spoken by Joan Allen, a reputed actress from The Contender and the Bourne movies...viewer discretion advised:

Hennessey: Okay cocksucker. Fuck with me, and we'll see who shits on the sidewalk.

There you have it. Part 2 to follow...eventually.

1:28 PM


Friday, February 06, 2009  
Netflux 2: Chanticleer Strikes Back
As first revealed on this site a few weeks, ago, my intrepid reporting exposed a sinister conspiracy involving Netflix and the sub-sub-par animated movie Rock-A-Doodle. I still do not know how that movie found itself onto my queue but was nonetheless perplexed and frankly insulted that after two and a half years of loyal membership that this obscure movie that no one on earth wants to see, especially in the age of Bolt in 3D and Paul Blart: Mall Cop, would be labeled as having a "Very Long Wait." You may think that that run-on sentence is an insult to your intelligence, and so you will know how I felt when I saw this.

Unknown. Really, Netflix? You went from taunting me with a Very Long Wait, with which I would never receive Rock-A-Doodle anyway, but now its availability is completely unknown to you. Why toy with me Netflix? What is the motiviation?

I consulted for an answer to this pressing issue. Upon searching for Rock-A-Doodle in their search engine, I found that not only was one version of the film released in 1999 unavailable due to it being discontinued by the manufacturer...

...but TWO versions of the film were discontinued by the manufacturer, the second released in 2005.

Strangely, enough, when Rock-A-Doodle is typed into Amazon, the film falls into spots 8 through 13 of the search results (try it for yourself), including the VHS version and the Spanish version (Ay dios mio). All versions are preceded by other high-quality animated fare such as FernGully: The Last Rainforest and A Troll in Central Park, all of which are still available from the manufacturer, and qualify for Free Super Saver Shipping.

And so, I must apologize to Netflix, for even if you do throttle high-frequency subscribers by not offering new releases to them when they are actually released, resulting in a DVD at spot 39 on the queue beign shipped out, no matter how long they have remained loyal to you, I cannot place the blame for Rock-A-Doodle solely on your shoulders. I think the review said it best.

Don Bluth's lavish animated musical Rock-A-Doodle was not a success when it was released in 1992. It's not hard to understand why: the film varies wildly in tone and the story makes little sense. In the live-action prologue, a little boy named Edmond learns that the crowing of Chanticleer the rooster did not make the sun rise, as everyone thought. But when a flood threatens his family's farm, Edmond sets off to get Chanticleer to make the sun rise and save the day. (Edmond gets turned into a kitten during this adventure, for no apparent reason other than that cats are easier to animate than humans.) Chanticleer has moved to the city, and although the farm seems to be in the Midwest, the nearest city is clearly supposed to be Las Vegas. Chanticleer is now the King, an Elvis caricature used for an unfunny spoof of showbiz clich├ęs. The animation is quite fluid, and there are lots of brightly colored effects--rainbows, sparkles, sunbeams. But parents will have a hard time explaining the story to their children.

The resounding opinion, as I should have realized long ago, is that this is a truly shitty movie, not even fit for the youngest of children, or most immature of 23-year olds.

As a result, I shall have to do the only self-respecting thing there is left to do: delete Rock-A-Doodle from my queue.

1:49 PM


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