Tuesday, February 26, 2008

A brief pause, then randomness

So I haven't been posting for a myriad of personal reasons, but I think I'm ready to get back on the horse. Today, I'm just to post about a couple of random things, no biggie.

Item the First:
I finally purchased Futurama: Bender's Big Score and watched it. I'm a huge fan of Futurama, and I was totally bummed that it was canceled. I much preferred Futurama to Family Guy or even The Simpsons, even though I love all three shows. Futurama has the sci-fi aspect to it, which lets the show do all sorts of great stories, such as time travel, paradoxes, planets, crazy technology. All fun stuff. All those things I mentioned are present in Bender's Big Score. In fact, I'm pretty sure that Bender's Big Score is my favourite Futurama installment EVER. It's one billion times more awesome than the Family Guy movie. The Futurama movie has all my favourite elements: time travel, paradoxes, musical numbers, a huge space battle involving pimped-out Death Stars, and it's so immersed in continuity, from the smallest things (Fry's dog) to the biggest things (Fry being intentionally cryogenically frozen). One of the reasons why I love Futurama and Bender's Big Score is because the timeline is so rich. Anyway, for fans of Futurama, I recommend the movie. Strongly.

Item the Second:
I watch the unrated extended cut of American Gangster, and it sort of alleviated my concerns with the movie, but not to the extent that I wanted. I saw the movie in the theatre, and I really liked it, but I didn't love it. My problem was that Frank Lucas had very little backstory. I didn't understand how he went from being a driver to being a badass so quickly. Logically, I know that Bumpy taught him everything and that the opening scene (Lucas setting a man on fire) is supposed to be the moment that Lucas becomes a badass. But emotionally, I just didn't get inside Lucas' head. I understood that he had a moral compass and lived by a personal code, much like Richie Roberts as was skillfully drawn, but I didn't feel that Lucas was a three-dimensional character, as much as Roberts was. I wasn't concerned when I saw the movie in the theatre, though. My faith in Ridley Scott is pretty unwavering. I knew that we'd get an eventual extended cut and that the scenes I was missing would be there. Well yes, there was some elaboration on the Bumpy-Lucas relationship, and the ending is very different, but otherwise, the movie is the same. 18 minutes of footage was inserted and I was only able to detect the two new scenes (Lucas on the beach remembering, the ending conversation). This isn't the overhaul I was expecting, like it was with Kingdom of Heaven, which was good in its theatrical version, but f*$%ing awesome in director's cut version. Oh well. American Gangster is still a good movie.

Item The Third:
Picked up the Criterion Collection's release of Bertolucci's The Last Emperor which I was in love with when I was younger. I haven't seen it since Bravo used to play it every Sunday. It's probably been ten years since I have seen it (and I still remember the scene in which the child Pu Yi poops and the servants inspect it). I'm excited. I love Criterion!

Item the Fourth:
I found out that Dave Sim's new secret project is called Judenhass and it's about the Holocaust. I don't know what to think. I read the preview on the website and was impressed (as usual) with Sim's pencils, but considering Sim's political and religious viewpoints, I don't know what to expect thematically. At least he's not denying it.

Item the Fifth:
Kevin Church's blog pointed me out to the cover of Daft Punk's Digital Love by Mobius Band. I love Daft Punk, and the cover is pretty entertaining. It's an interesting take that does away with the 70's synth and replaces it with indie soothing calm guitar jangles, or as I like to call it, sooth-rock. Delicious.

Item the Sixth:
Justice's album Cross, or simply a cross, I'm not sure, was critically fawned over, and I finally got the chance to listen to it. Let me be brief. The first track is amazing, the rest is satisfactory. That's a shame, cause I really wanted to like it.

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