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I said that before going to see Iron Man 2 and I won’t say it again. In related blogging I came across some meeting notes from the production process for said movie. Spoiler Alert! The discussion pertains to the end of the movie.

Executive One: So we bring back Robert Downey Jr, replace Terrence Howard with Don Cheedle, because my wife likes Don Cheedle, and bring in some sex appeal with the Ninja Scarlett Johanson character. What do have for a villain?

Executive Two: Well, who did Iron Man fight in the comic books?

Executive One: Doctor Doom

Executive Two: We used him in the Fantastic Four

Executive One: Okay, how about Blizzard, or Firebrand.

Executive Two: No, I’ve never heard of any of them. We need someone with name recognition. Like Mickey Rourke.

Executive One: Hmmm, does he have any superpowers?

Executive Two: Mickey Rourke? Not that I’m aware of, but he is in good shape for his age. Maybe we can do something with special effects. Give him a whip.

Executive One: Whiplash was an Iron Man villain.

Executive Two: Whatever, how did we end the first one?

Executive One: He fought another Iron Man.

Executive Two: Lets do that again, but throw the whips in to spice it up, two of ’em. If Ledger got an Oscar for the Joker role, wait’ll they see this, he didn’t even have one whip.

Personally, I think they had a blockbuster franchise with the Ninja Scarlett Johanson idea, they should have run with that.

Netflix thinks I would like Cuba Gooding Jr’s action flick “Way of War” enough to give it just one star. The Hannah Montana movie, one and a half.

I’m hesitant to post on anything related to Star Wars Episode I. More than enough has been said on the internet about what a turd it was, but I doubt it has ever been said as entertainingly as here. It’s a 70 minute review/bashing of the movie, and it should be watched not because of the subject but because it’s funny on it’s own. Broken out into 7 parts, so you don’t have to commit to the full 70 minutes (I wasn’t as enthralled by the last 3 segments)

Max Fisher, the precocious private school student from Rushmore seems to be blogging on Economic matters at the Atlantic. He saved Latin, what did you ever do?

I watched 20 minutes of Waltz and Bashir and turned it off. Not much plot, just people talking with some interesting animation. Since I didn’t make it half way through the movie, I’m tempted to tell Netflix it’s a one star flick. The problem with that is, it’s the kind of movie I like, it just failed in the execution.

Is Netflix smart enough to figure that one out? Maybe the question I should be asking is if I’m smart enough to figure it out, maybe I just think I like this kind of movie. The proof is in the pudding, as they say (am I using that correctly, it’s not an intuitive expression).

Schools done, I might be working like a sucker soon, but for the last 9 days I’ve been left entirely to my own devices. Here’s the rundown.

Drinking.

  • Statisticians are better at beer pong than basketball.
  • If you give a friend $5 to get himself a drink at a bar with $2 you-call-it’s and tell him you DO NOT want a shot, you’re probably going to get a shot.
  • Flip cup should be played by teams of four, give or take. If you have significantly more people multiple teams should be formed that rotate in.
  • 39 year old’s birthday parties are pretty much the same as 29 year old’s, which is very different than 19 year old’s and even more different than 9 year old’s. I find that comforting.

Movies.

  • The new Star Trek is good, but not as good as everyone says it is.
  • The new Terminator is bad but not as bad as everyone says it is.
  • Valkerye was pretty good. Tom Cruise played a cocky Nazi, which was a nice change of pace from his normal cocky American character. Actually it was the cocky American character with an eye patch.
  • The Wrestler was good, but I got tired of the camera following characters from behind as they went about their business. Sure, Marissa Tomei and Mickey Rourke have nice backs, especially for their advanced ages, but I got tired of looking at them. Worst Darren Aronofsky movie I’ve seen, but he makes good movies so that isn’t so bad.

Family. I made my annual pilgrimage north of LA with my sister to visit Grandma, as well as various cousins, Aunts, Uncles and second cousins.

  • Anyone know how to convince one’s grandma it’s time for a wheelchair? Maybe send her video’s on how great a rascal is? She’s too proud to admit it, but I’m pretty sure her life would be greatly improved if she could travel at a speed greater than 5 ft and hour. And she’d annoy a lot fewer motorists.
  • Family is cool and all, but I’m not sure mine is worth spending 12 hours in a car over a 3 day period to hang out with. Sorry gang, but I can’t stand that LA traffic. Maybe if there was some bribes I’d feel differently.

I’m hoping to get some beach time in soon but we’ve got June gloom greying up the skies. I’m looking for other ‘staycation’ activities to stay busy, but realistically I’ll probably just watch some movies and drink cheap beer.

I like checking out the movie review blurbs on Rotten Tomatoes for really bad movies, as they’re often pretty funny in how they blast a given flick. I hoped for something along those lines with the new Fast & Furious movie but I ended up laughing at the critics, not with them.

Wendy Ide of the Times (UK) says

This is dumb, loud and fast, with a questionable attitude towards road safety and a supporting cast apparently recruited for their tattoos rather than their acting ability.

Questionable attitude towards road safety? I guess she doesn’t get the point of the franchise.

Simon Reynolds of Digital Spy had this to say:

Ultimately, there is nothing on offer here but speed and fury. If you’re tempted to revisit something of this ilk, watch The Fast And The Furious, or better still track down the vastly superior cop-in-the-criminal-underworld action flick Point Break.

Now I love Point Break for it’s camp value as much as the next child of the 80’s, but lets not start pretending it’s Citizen Cane. And I wouldn’t be surprised if 20 years from now people look at the first Fast and the Furious in the same way we (half) jokingly love Point Break.

And the prize for trying hardest to get on promo ads goes to Can Magazine’s Fred Topel:

The fastest, most furious movie ever. It is so fast, you’ll be furious with excitement. I’m going to try to write my review fast, but that might make my editor furious.

I’m sure that was meant in jest, but the review was counted as positive by RT. I can’t imagine the film would entertain me as much as these reviews, so I’ll hold off till it’s on USA on a rainy Sunday afternoon. Thankfully it doesn’t rain very often here.

Everybody is putting their top 5 lists on Facebook, which I find annoying. I don’t think it’s annoying for blog posts, so without putting too much thought into it, here are some top 5’s.

Albums

  • Ben Harper – Fight For Your Mind
  • The Roots – Phrenology
  • Radiohead – The Bends
  • Damien Rice – O
  • DJ Shadow – The Private Press

Nothing too recent here, perhaps I’m set in my ways in my old age, or maybe I just need more time to realize how great the las Jonas Brother CD is.

Movies

  • Pulp Fiction
  • The Big Lebowski
  • The Departed
  • Braveheart
  • No Country For Old Men

Tough one to narrow down. Like the Oscar voters, I think I’m biased toward certain types of movies here. I really like comedys, but don’t think of them as ‘great’ no matter how hard they make me laugh. Sorry Superbad.

Books (Fiction)

  • Fight Club – Chuck Paleniuk
  • Hocus Pocus – Kurt Vonnegut
  • Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close – Jonathan Safran Foer
  • Breakfast of Champions – Kurt Vonnegut

I couldn’t think of a fifth book to add. I’ve really read more than four books, and if I was going to be completely honest this list should be Fight Club and four more Vonnegut books, but that wouldn’t be too interesting. I’ll try and remember to update when I think of another book I really loved, other than Stewart’s Calculus.

As I write these, I wonder if I’m being completely honest with you (and myself), or if I skew my lists away from how I actually feel towards stuff that I enjoyed but also think will make me look cooler/smarter/whatever.

I was watching movie trailers on Hulu, cause they’re usually better than the movies, and if they suck you only lose two minutes. I clicked on The Education of Charlie Banks randomly. It looks to be a thoughtful indie flick, which isn’t strange. What’s strange is that it says it’s directed by Fred Durst. I’m assuming this is Fred Durst of Limp Bizkit fame, one of the lamer pop icons of recent memory. Not surprising that he’s getting into movies, what’s surprising is that he’s made a movie that doesn’t appear to have any explosions or an abundance of naked women.

Based on the trailer, I’m going to say Fred is (1) a better film maker than musician and (2) surprisingly artisitic.

I’m fond of low brow comedies. The kind of movies that don’t try and do anything but make you laugh. The kind of movies that made Adam Sandler a star so he could start making movies that aren’t funny. Movies with Will Farrel, Vince Vaughn, or Seth Rogan. The plot is often based around a guy trying to get a girl, they don’t seem to put much emphasis around plot. That doesn’t bother me.

I just watched Zac and Miri make a porno, it was funny. Rent it. At the end, right when it’s getting really cheezey and lame, Zac and Miri telling each other how much they love each, a naked Jay (form Jay and Silent Bob) walks up to Zac and starts talking about a Dutch rudder. You grab your special purpose and have some one else move your arm around. So you aren’t masterbating, because somebody else is doing the work. Hilarious! Then the movie gets cheezey again.

What I propose to Hollywood is they stop forcing the guy and the girl get together at the end of these flicks. Make the end like the rest of the movie, a couple of scenes soley devoted to making me laugh, even if you don’t get the happy ending. Like Zac and Miri could have decided they didn’t love each other, they really loved making porn. That could’ve been funny. Porn is funnier than people falling in love.