Recent Movie Comments

  • Smorgasboard, October 2013 edition   26 weeks 3 days ago
    relantel wrote:

    Obamacare:

    Who in their right mind got fleeced for $643 million (give or take) for the Obamacare website? Between the abject failure of the site, and the false hit data being given out by the administration, it's a wonder anyone has actually signed up at all.  One example I heard was Iowa, where the administration claimed over 67000 hits but only 5 people had signed up in the first 10 days.

    It feels like everyone is just .... waiting to see what's going to happen with ObamaCare. Maybe it will just collapse under its own weight? It's a disaster here in NY, but most Dems in the state are counseling to give the disaster a chance. I got a letter from my health insurer informing me that my coverage would end Dec. 31st, and now I've got to find out what coverage I'll be able to afford. Thanks, Obama.

  • Thoughts on Impending Fatherhood   1 year 10 weeks ago

    So you'll be a father as well? I hope he or she has Kate Middleton's nose -- it's all the rage over in the U.S. You always had a regal bearing anyway, Rojo -- go right ahead and improve the royal stock.

    My baby is due on March 23rd, and we attended a birthing class about two weeks ago and it was hysterical. Honestly, when the baby comes there's not going to be a whole lot that I can do besides being supportive and just there for my wife. Aside from an emergency in which I will be forced to deliver the baby myself, I imagine that it will all go easily enough, seeing as how this has been going on for a long, long time.

    My wife and I are having a baby girl, and we plan on naming her Olivia Grace. I'm very excited -- I've even got a curriculum worked out. I've been try to find sci-fi themed storybooks, etc. but that's a while away yet.

  • Thoughts on Impending Fatherhood   1 year 10 weeks ago

     Belated congratulations from me too. I am also due to become a father this year, in June. I'm planning that my kid will marry Will and Kate's, making it the future monarch and me a member of the aristocracy...

  • The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey   1 year 12 weeks ago
    Marbleman wrote:

    Nice review Krog. (and Merry Christmas/Happy New Year/condolences on the election results, etc. etc.) :P I agree about some distracting elements in this movie. For me it was less the wizard bird poop or FPS - my irritation was more due to the rubbery quality of the battle scenes.

    In the wake of the election I'm listening to a lot of jazz lately. No more radio politics anymore for me. The jazz washes over me, like a relaxing eddy in our shared cultural sewage. No more liking a song and then doping out the lyrics only to be horrified. Nope -- now it's buttery smooth jazz as often as possible, and no politics. Someone noted recently that over one billion dollars was spent failing to get Romney elected. Now imagine if that money had been used to make ten $100 million blockbuster films with a subtly conservative tone? You would at least have gotten some kind of return on your money, if nothing else. Enough to keep funding those kinds of movies, until eventually the culture changes.

    [In a panic, turns up volume on jazz station.] 

    What was we talkin' 'bout? Oh right, The Hobbit.

    I think you're referring to the many, many times that the rickety platform the dwarves huddle on falls (multiple times) and they remain unscathed? The storm giant episode? NO ONE FALLS OFF THE CLIFF? (tilts head) REALLY?! This goes back to my point about the visual jumble just blurring together, and my eyes/brain just shutting off and saying, "Call me when all the pixels stop moving!"

    Marbleman wrote:

    After a while when dwarves and hobbits are thrown about and remain seemingly unscathed, you begin to take it for granted that they are quasi-invincible. So after seeing the Hobbit it seems to me that Jackson is giving his Hobbit movies retcon elements, to take into account the broader "theater" of what is happening in light of the Lord of the Rings, which of course was not in Tolkien's mind when he first penned The Hobbit. (Sauron isn't mentioned by name at all for instance) Not a bad idea given that most audiences are familiar with LotR by now, and it does give the movie a different feel than the book.

    I read the books so long ago that I cannot recall the 'feel' of them. I thought Jackson was just plumbing around for extra material to pad the film out to three installments. It makes sense that Jackson would want to make the two trilogies mesh a bit better.

    Marbleman wrote:

    One of my favorite scenes that I laughed out loud at was Galadriel conducting a conversation in Gandalf's mind over Saruman prattling on in the background. I got the impression that Gandalf is used to Saruman being a windbag and was happy for such psychic relief. Another thing I liked was Richard Armitage's portrayal of Thorin. I think they did a good job balancing the comedy and nobility of the dwarf company.

    Agreed, about the dwarves -- they were great. Had they not be great, the movie would flop. As for Saruman, I did not perceive that humor at the time. Hearing Saruman rip on Radagast was funny, however. It did seem like whenever Galadriel spoke to Gandalf he was in a kind of fugue stage, just one micron from salivating over her. Kinda creepy.

    Marbleman wrote:

    I'm a little disappointed there are hardly any female characters of any kind besides Galadriel, and she wasn't in the Hobbit book either. Always felt that lacking with Tolkien. Eowyn is pretty much the only interesting female.  Not Jackson's fault though.

    As I started to respond to your comment, I felt assured you would mention Tom Bombadil's absence. Oh well. He was the most whimsical of the various characters. Maybe he made it to the DVD extras! As for women in Tolkien fiction... meh. Give me a good story with an all female cast and I'm fine. Sexual demographics in fantasy films? How about costuming choices instead? And hey, how do you know that there weren't any dwarven females in the company? They have beards and are reputedly indistinguishable from male dwarves, so there's still hope. And the dwarven females would still be less hairy then some Women's Studies majors. Women with hairy, hairy legs CAN be dwarves, is my point.

    Marbleman wrote:

    Oh and I doubt this movie was the end of Gollum for the rest of the Hobbit movies. In the Hobbit book, after Bilbo escapes the mountain, that's the end of his appearances until the Lord of the Rings. But he's such a popular character and they've made so many other changes that I wonder if he'll be tracking Bilbo in the next two installments. It seems likely, considering alot of the elements which were added (Radagast, the Witch King returning in Mirkwood) WERE in fact in Tolkien lore - but in the books they happened a little before the Fellowship of the Ring, not 60 years before. One of those events involved Gollum getting captured by Aragorn, being held prisoner by the wood elves (Legolas' clan), and then giving them the slip and seemingly defecting or getting captured by Sauron's orcs. Which later leads to his torture and revelation of "Baggins" and "Shire." I'm guessing some version of this is in the offing.

    An excellent guess! I don't know why he's such a popular character, however. Jackson can't seem to make up his mind about whether he is loathsome or dangerous or pitiful. Well, he's supposed to be all three, I realize -- but I think having seen Gollum as pitiful (and worthy of empathy) before seeing him in The Hobbit undercuts some of his menace. From what I recall, he should be a lot scarier -- a monster, a boogeyman that Bilbo must outwit or be eaten. Knowing his backstory ruins it a bit.

    Marbleman wrote:

    Looking forward to Beorn, Cumberbatch's Smaug, and Stephen Fry as the Master of Lake Town.

    I'm most interested to see how Smaug is handled. Will he look like a traditional Westernized dragon, or something more lizardlike? Also, Smaug's death -- a single arrow? Really? How well will that translate onscreen, I wonder? Laughable? Dramatic?

    Marbleman wrote:

    *Also hope the DVD includes some of the storyboard/concept art when Guillermo del Toro had the Hobbit Project helm.

    Bah. I'm still irked that At The Mountains of Madness wasn't filmed by GdT. I was really hoping to see that story on film. Book suggestion for you: Anything by Charles Stross -- recommend you try out 'The Atrocity Archives'. Sort of a mix between James Bond, The Office and The X-Files, with an IT department flair.

  • The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey   1 year 13 weeks ago

    Nice review Krog. (and Merry Christmas/Happy New Year/condolences on the election results, etc. etc.) :P I agree about some distracting elements in this movie. For me it was less the wizard bird poop or FPS - my irritation was more due to the rubbery quality of the battle scenes. After a while when dwarves and hobbits are thrown about and remain seemingly unscathed, you begin to take it for granted that they are quasi-invincible. So after seeing the Hobbit it seems to me that Jackson is giving his Hobbit movies retcon elements, to take into account the broader "theater" of what is happening in light of the Lord of the Rings, which of course was not in Tolkien's mind when he first penned The Hobbit. (Sauron isn't mentioned by name at all for instance) Not a bad idea given that most audiences are familiar with LotR by now, and it does give the movie a different feel than the book. One of my favorite scenes that I laughed out loud at was Galadriel conducting a conversation in Gandalf's mind over Saruman prattling on in the background. I got the impression that Gandalf is used to Saruman being a windbag and was happy for such psychic relief. Another thing I liked was Richard Armitage's portrayal of Thorin. I think they did a good job balancing the comedy and nobility of the dwarf company.

    I'm a little disappointed there are hardly any female characters of any kind besides Galadriel, and she wasn't in the Hobbit book either. Always felt that lacking with Tolkien. Eowyn is pretty much the only interesting female.  Not Jackson's fault though.  Oh and I doubt this movie was the end of Gollum for the rest of the Hobbit movies. In the Hobbit book, after Bilbo escapes the mountain, that's the end of his appearances until the Lord of the Rings. But he's such a popular character and they've made so many other changes that I wonder if he'll be tracking Bilbo in the next two installments. It seems likely, considering alot of the elements which were added (Radagast, the Witch King returning in Mirkwood) WERE in fact in Tolkien lore - but in the books they happened a little before the Fellowship of the Ring, not 60 years before. One of those events involved Gollum getting captured by Aragorn, being held prisoner by the wood elves (Legolas' clan), and then giving them the slip and seemingly defecting or getting captured by Sauron's orcs. Which later leads to his torture and revelation of "Baggins" and "Shire." I'm guessing some version of this is in the offing.

    Looking forward to Beorn, Cumberbatch's Smaug, and Stephen Fry as the Master of Lake Town.

    *Also hope the DVD includes some of the storyboard/concept art when Guillermo del Toro had the Hobbit Project helm.

  • Skyfall   1 year 22 weeks ago

    Even more thoughts on Bond!

    Q: Well, now we know what the 'Q' stands for. I was unimpressed with the new Q. Yeah, he had fascinating hair but otherwise this has got to be the most gadget-free James Bond ever. He was given a palmprint detecting handgun and a radio. A radio. Sure, a tiny radio, but really that's it? The new Q does hardly anything.

    Bond girls -- yeah, there is a 'Bond Girl' in the flick, but she had very little screen time. The fact that the villainous Bond Girl was able to be turned by Bond in a convincing way was great. Bond isn't a misogynist in this flick, and that's great.

  • Skyfall   1 year 22 weeks ago

    I thought SkyFall was the best Bond film yet. The theme was great and the opening credit sequence was spectacular. SkyFall for me was the best so far because it cleaved more closely to Ian Fleming's original character of Bond than any other Bond film. None of Bond's somewhat negative attributes really make it into the films. For example -- we discover that outside of being a spy Bond has really no life. No spouse, no children, no girlfriend -- when he's MIA for a bit and presumed dead M clears his flat into storage and writes a quick eulogy for him. It's kind of pathetic, actually -- but it makes Bond into more of a person, as opposed to an invincible super agent. Best Bond film to date. It left me wanting more, and folks, that means it was a good movie.

    EDIT:

    I intentionally made that above paragraph into a single monster 'graph in order to debug the code. Seems that the same bug that made Rojo lose his first paragraph did the same to me. Except when it clipped off my first paragraph earlier that left me with no comment at all. I believe it may be fixed now.

    Other observations about SkyFall -- very character driven this time around. As Rojo stated, the film is all about Bond's relationship with M. Paradoxically, spycraft will always require well-trained people; people who will sometimes by necessity be treated as disposable pawns. During the film Bond bonds with another rookie field agent, and tells her that field work is not for her. She disagrees, but by the film's end has decided he was right. She wants to have a life, apparently. Bond is best suited for field work not just because he's awesome, but because of his character flaws and his lack of the skills necessary to make a real life outside his work.

    Bond is a borderline sociopath. Not in the sense that he's a serial killer, but in the sense that he's a loner. For all his ability to manipulate people as a spy, he's really not a 'people person' all that much.

    It makes him into a more human, tragic character -- which was what Fleming always intended.

  • Skyfall   1 year 23 weeks ago

    It just did it now! I wrote a pithy response, explaining how since the site was (possibly) hacked that the posting of new content has been somewhat hinky. I've written posts, then posted them -- only to be informed that they did not contain enough content to warrant posting. (?)

    I will investigate further. Sorry about that Rojo -- great review as always.

     

  • Skyfall   1 year 23 weeks ago

     Hmm, my first paragraph has gone missing. This happened when I was editing, too.

  • Thoughts on Impending Fatherhood   1 year 29 weeks ago

    relantel wrote:

    ok, I must be slow on the reading as I just now noticed the post. So a hearty congratulations from these parts. Three cheers for Lil Krog!

    Thank you! Funny story -- second sonogram is done, and my wife (who is a Filippino) tells me that the sonograph technician claimed she had never seen a more camera shy baby. The baby was apparently covering its face with both hands. So I comment that the child is not going to be 'very' Filippino since it doesn't want to be photographed.

    Fun fact: Filippinos love to be photographed and take photographs. And they all (not matter how ugly) photograph beautifully. It's uncanny. I can hold a smile for about four (4) nanoseconds in preparation for being photographed. This requires a fair amount of prep time (thinking of something funny, checking tooth alignment, etc.)

    And yet a huge group of Filippinos can be ambushed with someone shouting "Photo!" and they will all instantly assume a great natural-looking pose and a perfect smile. I look like I'm receiving a colonscopy or freefalling or running in place. But not my baby -- my baby like me -- doesn't want to be photographed.

    So I laugh and say, "This babeh gonna be more like me than you, haha!" But my wife is unflappable. She says, slowly (as though tutoring an especially slow person) "No, husband, the baby is not covering up, it's doing this."

    She then takes a Madonna-like 'vogueing' pose. (see below)

    Also, they adore karaoke. If the world were ending in 60 minutes, they would say, "Let's hit the karaoke bar."

    But really, I love Filippinos. They are almost universally kind, happy and hardworking. I only tease people I like, and I like them a lot.

  • Thoughts on Impending Fatherhood   1 year 29 weeks ago

    ok, I must be slow on the reading as I just now noticed the post. So a hearty congratulations from these parts. Three cheers for Lil Krog!

  • Thoughts on Impending Fatherhood   1 year 29 weeks ago

    Marbleman wrote:

    Congrats on future parenthood to you and your wife, Krog.  I hope all is going well with you and yours.

    Quote:

    And so I maintain my carefully cultivated aura of insufferability.

    We need people tipping some sacred cows.  There's a subtle tyranny at work when folks just agree to go along to get along, when so many things in our culture don't make a lick of sense.

    Thanks! Every week I am informed that our fetus is now the size of a:

    • blueberry
    • gummi bear
    • peel 'n eat shrimp
    • lemon

    We're headed for 'cornish game hen' very soon now.

    There a lot of things that don't make sense in our culture. Just last week I drove past of a whole herd of non-conformist hipsters on Fifth Avenue, camping out to be the first to buy a phone. I cackled out my car window, "It's just a phone!!!!!" But I've got some device issues of my own with which to contend -- I'm in love with mechanical, clicky, antique keyboards. I'm typing this right now on a 1986 IBM Model M keyboard. If you do a lot of writing, you've got to at least try one someday. Well, if you're old like me you probably already have tried one.

    Update on France: in a stunning pre-emptive cultural surrender, they've closed about 20 embassies in various countries in anticipation of a Muslim uprising. They didn't want to be outdone by the American President, who recently thanked the quasi-President of Egypt for defending our embassy.

    Is it just me or has the entire world gone mad? And yet Romney remains at 47%. My only explanation is that the pollsters are blatantly lying. They know they cannot put Obama in the lead, but they couldn't sleep at night forecasting The Quantum Emergence's impending landslide defeat. So, they place him in a dead heat.

    Anyway, this blue/green marble keeps on rolling.

  • Thoughts on Impending Fatherhood   1 year 30 weeks ago

    Congrats on future parenthood to you and your wife, Krog.  I hope all is going well with you and yours.

    Quote:

    And so I maintain my carefully cultivated aura of insufferability.

    We need people tipping some sacred cows.  There's a subtle tyranny at work when folks just agree to go along to get along, when so many things in our culture don't make a lick of sense.

  • Mystery of the Week: Clark and Blair Woodcock (or the case of the two Rebeccas)   1 year 42 weeks ago

     Sorry that I've been away so much I didn't see the comments until now. I don't know much about Blair other than what is written, but I have found him in the 1860 and 1861 tax records for Woodbury Township, Blair County, as well as Clark for years 1858, 1859, 1860 and 1861. Their father Amos shows up in the township tax records for 1832 and 1833, when it was a part of Huntingdon county. There are a number of S(c)hells in the township concurrently as well as pre 1832. It is unclear when Amos and Catherine died, though it seems readily apparent it was before 1850 for certain, and after 1833. 1833 Amos Woodcock shows as taxed for "1 house & lot" and "1 powder-mill". Also taxed for 1833 was a Joshua Woodcock, presumably brother of Amos, for his occupation. Both have same entries for 1832. (The publication I viewed at the BCGS earlier in June only covered up through 1833)

    Another piece of info is the recent act of the Pennsylvania legislature that made vital records public (50 years for deaths and 105 years for births), and their publication of their indexes, led to the 1908 death record for Rebbeca (Grace) Woodcock, showing her to be the daughter of John Grace and Mary Bowser. In turn, this led to Bowser in Bedford county during the American revolution. (The Bowser Family History by Addison Bartholomew Bowser, 1912) Neither of which helps you as a descendant of Blair. Interestingly, though, one of Clark's daughters - Jennie Woodcock's 1933 death cert mistakenly showed Blair as the father's name, along with Rebecca Grace as mother. The other two known of Clark's were Anna May died 1906 and Mary Catherine Woodcock died 1925. My notes for Blair had only two daughters, Adessa b 1860 and Annie b 1863, with a possible son Johnnie. For Clark, I have a still as yet unidentified J. A. Woodcock as a child, but it is not certain it is his.

  • Mystery of the Week: Clark and Blair Woodcock (or the case of the two Rebeccas)   1 year 46 weeks ago

    I am also a direct descendent of Blair Woodcock, and would love to have any information on the family that
    Is available.
    Sincerely
    Jeanne Baker

  • Mystery of the Week: Clark and Blair Woodcock (or the case of the two Rebeccas)   1 year 49 weeks ago

    I am a direct descendant of Blair Woodcock via Rebecca Kylor Woodcock, later Rebecca Flaig. If you want any information about this family, I will give you my dad's contact information. He has done extensive genealogical research on our ancestors.

  • Wesley Snipes: Tax-Relief Cultist?   2 years 1 week ago

    I SUPPORT WESLEY TO THE FULLEST , I DONT FULLY BELIEVE ALL THAT CRAP BUT AFTER 400 YEARS OF TORTURE & SLAVERY , WE NEVER GOT 40 ACRES & MULE , NEVER GOT 1 ACRE & A MULES TOE , WE SHOULDNT HAVE TO PAY THE GOVERNMENT , CAUSE THEY NEVER PAYED US BACK !!

  • Video Game Reviewer Needed   2 years 2 weeks ago

    Marbleman wrote:

    I saw Tim Shafer (of Grim Fandango and Monkey Island fame) is raising a huge amount on Kickstart for "Double Fine Adventure."  He's always coming up with interesting material - I remember I got a huge kick out of Psychonauts.  That was a game everyone enjoyed and praised but for some reason didn't make much money.

    I'd love it if they made more point-and-click adventure/puzzle stories ala Monkey Island and Myst.  They left alot to the player's imagination, had great writing, and were better for it.

    I've heard of Monkey Island, but not Grim Fandango or Psychonauts. Gotta give them a once over. Myst I never played, but it seemed to me to be akin to a graphical version of Zork. Of course, any Kickstarter project that features the following image has got to be awesome:

    What do I love about this shot? Well, you can see that Cookie just isn't buying it.

    Cookie: "Me no think point-click game cutting edge anymore..."

  • Obama Re-Election Video   2 years 4 weeks ago

    Marbleman wrote:

    The policy decision should be focused on whether or not the sort of health care coverage Sandra Fluke advocates for should be mandated by the government to employers at all.  Not contraceptives or women's health in general.

    If the government isn't responsible for providing healthcare, then it stops being an issue -- pay for your own healthcare! Buy lots of condoms if you want -- Catholics can look down their noses, etc. -- but they won't (and shouldn't) stop you from making that choice. Your choice -- your dollar. The dollar is the most discrete unit of personal freedom, in my opinion.

    The Marbleman wrote:

    All else is white noise and an attempt to bring culture war hobby horses into the race.

    So, the Fluke slut controversy - cui bono? Rush Limbaugh is the only one who wins, and well played. The rest, the ones that think they can make hay from this, are too far in the bubble to realize the rest of the country has moved on.

    I think Team Obama realizes that any opportunity to NOT talk about the economy must be seized, like the proverbial weeds on the cliff edge. Obama's base is not very happy with him, and so he's tapping into narratives that resonate with them -- Darth Vader Republicans who want to take away a woman's right to have lots of sex without consequences, or even a financial cost!

    Krog wrote:

    Oh man, here we go with the fence-sitting -- compare the natures of the stupidities of both parties, Marbleman, and make your choice, or (as you said yourself) get into a Ron Paulian bi-plane and fly off to tilt at politically idealistic windmills. At least the right's wackos are fractious -- the left's wackos are really, really well-organized. It's a turd sandwich either way, sure, but go with the smaller, less-turdy sandwich.

    The Marbleman wrote:

    It's the Tea After-Party, this crew raking Romney over the coals because he's not ANGRY enough, who are vetting people in this way. Even if I disagree with conservatives on some things, what's important is the GOP stands united as a bulwark against this adminstration's numerous indulgences. As you said yourself, this is not a time for quibbling over incidentals.

    Romney is the only winner in the race right now -- a winner in the real world of business. Every other serious endeavour that the other candidates engaged in (academia, politics) doesn't require that you turn a profit. You just show up and know the right people. Romney is a wild financial success because he kept his promises to his investors -- he gave them a return on their investment.

    Were I Romney, I would face this fact head-on and dare people to hate him for it. That is my greatest disappointment with Romney, his lukewarm defense of free markets, and business in general. Instead, we float from each weekly attempt by Romney to have a 'common touch' with the masses. He goes to a basketball game ("that's what ordinary people do, right?") and then says that he loves basketball -- in fact he knows several of the owners personally.

    0_o

    Of course, the media is waiting to pounce on any opportunity to make Romney look like the Monopoly Guy or Richie Rich, but he shouldn't walk right into it. None of the candidates makes it look effortless -- with the exception of Gingrich, who makes it looks so easy that you wonder if even cares how it turns out.

    Some pundit somewhere got it right when he said that the Republican candidates have difficulty 'interfacing with carbon-based lifeforms'. Maybe it has to do with the state of the media. Obama can stride out into the spotlight confident that the vast bulk of the media will airbrush his every blemish. Not so, conservatives.

    Romney seems like the kind of guy who, when attempting some new project, hires consultants, experts, and takes their advice. He seems very stage-managed. The kind of candor I would love to see from Romney (or any candidate) just isn't likely to be seen. If Romney were courageous, he would say, "Look -- I'm not like you. I have eight children. I'm a multimillionaire. And I'm a Mormon. But I'm a very successful businessperson, and that's what you need. Not someone like you -- who can barely add fractions. You need me. Not some touchy-feely socialist who never worked a day in his whole life."

    This is why no one will hire me as a political consultant.

    The Marbleman wrote:

    But Rick Santorum is doing what I feared by attacking libertarians (he says he will "fight strongly" against libertarian influence in the party), and alienating social conservative moderates and independents. Now if I were in the race, and I said that I would "fight strongly" against pro-life people, or "publically oppose" conservatives against euthanasia - do you think other Republicans should put up with my divisive behavior? No. They would rightly tell me to put that aside and focus on the important, unifying issue: the economy and the mismanagement of government.  Santorum tries to tie the economy in with his pie-in-the-sky social policies that nobody but religious social conservatives resonate with.

    I know a lot of good people (family, friends) who like either Gingrich or Santorum. I think they like them partially because Obama has affected people in a very visceral way. He really turns people's stomachs, and there's this fear stalking them, Marbleman, that no one really represents how they feel. We are feeling creatures, ultimately. Liberals almost exclusively think with their hearts, but even conservatives want someone who really reflects how they feel. Seeing someone like Santorum who is not afraid to say how he feels, who doesn't apologize, is energerizing. Romney is boring -- enervating by comparison.

    We need to win this election -- Obama must be removed from office, and unceremoniously scraped off the nation's collective shoe at the sidewalk's edge. Only Romney has a serious chance of doing that.

    The Marbleman wrote:

    I'd rather have George Romney. The father had stones and said what he thought, whereas I think it is correctly perceived that Mitt will say whatever gets him the nomination. I really think I would respect Romney more if he stopped trying to pretend so much and just WAS the competent, savvy, no-nonsense suit he is inside. I love that boring Romney, not the Romney who pretends to like NASCAR and has done everything to please the base except convert to evangelical Christianity.

    I want an anti-messiah. I want a drab Wellington to take down the charismatic Napoleon. This country needs a Dream Slayer before it can get a new morning in America.  We can worry about acquiring a new, inspirational American dream after we've successfully evacuated the giant scorpion-infested pit we're in.

    I find that kind of non-messianic attitude refreshing. Up with Boring! Down with Charisma! I'd love to make the video contrasting Obama's messianic effrontery with the staid, realistic BORINGNESS of Romney. That's the hollow stupidity inside of progressivism -- government isn't superheroic, it's villainous and/or stupid. They see Captain America, bringing social justice to the oppressed.

    I see Deadpool.

     

  • Video Game Reviewer Needed   2 years 4 weeks ago

    I saw Tim Shafer (of Grim Fandango and Monkey Island fame) is raising a huge amount on Kickstart for "Double Fine Adventure."  He's always coming up with interesting material - I remember I got a huge kick out of Psychonauts.  That was a game everyone enjoyed and praised but for some reason didn't make much money.

    I'd love it if they made more point-and-click adventure/puzzle stories ala Monkey Island and Myst.  They left alot to the player's imagination, had great writing, and were better for it.

  • Obama Re-Election Video   2 years 4 weeks ago

    Krog wrote:

    I've gotta ask you Marbleman, for your take on the Limbaugh 'slut' controversy.

    I think it is Jersey Shore stuff. 

    Does anyone really think that a talk radio veteran of many decades would make comments that were not calculated well in advance? I don't know why he would apologize for them. Anyway, it doesn't change my opinion of him one way or another. As for the moral posturing all around, it says alot about the twerps that are on the front lines of the culture wars. They think everyone will drop everything and rally to their banners. Sorry, we live a pluralistic society that has other concerns. The policy decision should be focused on whether or not the sort of health care coverage Sandra Fluke advocates for should be mandated by the government to employers at all.  Not contraceptives or women's health in general.

    But the social conservatives want to frame it as a religious freedom issue, and the leftists want to claim it is a war on women and BTW RICK SANTORUM THINKS CONTRACEPTIVES ARE EVIL (which, unless you have never heard of Catholicism, is underwhelming). The left thinks it can artificially turn this into a Franz Ferdinand-assassinated-in-Sarajevo moment. Most people have already come down on one side or the other on this issue based on the answer to one question: should the goverment be involved in any of this? All else is white noise and an attempt to bring culture war hobby horses into the race.

    So, the Fluke slut controversy - cui bono? Rush Limbaugh is the only one who wins, and well played. The rest, the ones that think they can make hay from this, are too far in the bubble to realize the rest of the country has moved on.

    Krog wrote:

    Oh man, here we go with the fence-sitting -- compare the natures of the stupidities of both parties, Marbleman, and make your choice, or (as you said yourself) get into a Ron Paulian bi-plane and fly off to tilt at politically idealistic windmills. At least the right's wackos are fractious -- the left's wackos are really, really well-organized. It's a turd sandwich either way, sure, but go with the smaller, less-turdy sandwich.

    All stupidities are not created equal, that's certain.  And some stupidities cost more and damage the economy more, which is why I'm being so tolerant of right-wing . . .  overreactions.  But it is not I who should be accused of ideologically purism - that appellation should be applied to the joyless Tea After-Partiers.  I'm a huge advocate of a big tent and willing to countenance people like the Log Cabin Republicans, Olympia Snow, and Tea Parties and not ask who is a RINO constantly. It's the Tea After-Party, this crew raking Romney over the coals because he's not ANGRY enough, who are vetting people in this way. Even if I disagree with conservatives on some things, what's important is the GOP stands united as a bulwark against this adminstration's numerous indulgences. As you said yourself, this is not a time for quibbling over incidentals.

    But Rick Santorum is doing what I feared by attacking libertarians (he says he will "fight strongly" against libertarian influence in the party), and alienating social conservative moderates and independents. Now if I were in the race, and I said that I would "fight strongly" against pro-life people, or "publically oppose" conservatives against euthanasia - do you think other Republicans should put up with my divisive behavior? No. They would rightly tell me to put that aside and focus on the important, unifying issue: the economy and the mismanagement of government.  Santorum tries to tie the economy in with his pie-in-the-sky social policies that nobody but religious social conservatives resonate with.

    Krog wrote:

    Someone with more sense would tread carefully, but the Democrats were able to make the statement that those who object to contraception should not be forced to subsidize it, into a full out assault on women. Grab those dandelion stalks Obama, grab 'em!

    That's how they tried to frame it. I don't think anyone bought it except those in the trenches for the Democrats already.

    Krog wrote:

    Romney is the best choice -- Obama should be done come the fall. Focus on the numbers. Obama's record does not add up. It's not that Obama has lied (although he has) it is the fact that the Dissembler-in-Chief's policies were failures. He got what he wanted, and now the economy is coming back ever so slightly not because of anything Obama did, but in spite of his policies.

    I'd rather have George Romney. The father had stones and said what he thought, whereas I think it is correctly perceived that Mitt will say whatever gets him the nomination. I really think I would respect Romney more if he stopped trying to pretend so much and just WAS the competent, savvy, no-nonsense suit he is inside. I love that boring Romney, not the Romney who pretends to like NASCAR and has done everything to please the base except convert to evangelical Christianity.

    I want an anti-messiah. I want a drab Wellington to take down the charismatic Napoleon. This country needs a Dream Slayer before it can get a new morning in America.  We can worry about acquiring a new, inspirational American dream after we've successfully evacuated the giant scorpion-infested pit we're in.

  • Video Game Reviewer Needed   2 years 5 weeks ago

    Will wrote:

    One problem I see is the obvious one, what if you contributed X$ and the end result is crap or worse yet vaporware! What kind of insurance is there against fraud?

    Well, the Kickstarter thing is designed so that if the funding goal amount is not reached that everyone gets their money back. If the goal is reached, then all the pledged amounts are removed from the various accounts. Whether the game is actually any good or not... that's probably why game developers are a picky bunch. It's a very competitive market.

    So Mass Effect 3 fans are upset by the ending not being affected by their decisions at all? Interesting.

  • Obama Re-Election Video   2 years 5 weeks ago

    Marbleman wrote:

    So Piers Morgan, whose voice normally makes my stomach rebel, interviewed director Davis Guggenheim on this.  I started laughing so hard I couldn't breathe, my dog was barking, my friend thought I was having a seizure for a moment.  General bedlam.  The impetus:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FzBpk7mDQ20&feature=related

    Morgan:  "Most documentary makers balance these movies with the negatives as well as the positives.  So what are the negatives in your movie about Barack Obama?"

    Guggenheim:  "The negatives were there were too many accomplishments."

    You know what this means? Piers Morgan must be pretty desperate.

    For his next show he'll probably juggle hand grenades. The risks are comparable, professionally.

    Guggenheim could have also said, "I never got to kiss Barack Obama full on the mouth. That's probably the only negative." This all reminds me of Chris Matthews' 'leg tingle' statement, which should have gotten him laughed off the air, and journalist Nina Burleigh's declaration during the L'Affaire Lewinsky that she would gladly give Clinton a blowjob as thanks for keeping abortion legal.

    These are not journalists -- they're partisans. Nakedly, openly partisan.

    I've gotta ask you Marbleman, for your take on the Limbaugh 'slut' controversy.

    Quote:

    And better:

    Morgan:  "Where do you find fault in him personally?"

    Guggenheim:  (huge pause, deep looks of introspection)  "You know, I - I don't, really."

    Morgan:  (incredulous) "He's a perfect human being?

    Guggenheim:  (another big pause, maybe he has to think about that too)  "Well.  No.  But I'm really quite in awe of him as a leader."

    Might as well ask the Pope if Jesus had any serious personal flaws. What was Guggenheim's mind doing during those pregnant pauses? Was he querying The Matrix to see if Neo was defeatable? Dividing by zero? What a beautiful 'abort/retry/fail?' moment.

    Or maybe Guggenheim was thinking, "... do I ever want to work as a director, ever again?"

    The Marbleman wrote:

    Anyway, I gather we can all save 17 minutes.  Basically this is a call to the leftist base urging them to ignore the fact that Barry hoodwinked them as well as the rest of the country.  I guess they'll just play an endless loop of repealing DODT and OBL.  Since that is all the administration can lay claim to, even tentatively.

    He's ALL ALONE, Marbleman. Don't you get that? Not since Bruce Willis' character from that one movie, that one time, with Liv Tyler in it and Ben Affleck, did a man stand up to forces of the Outer Dark ... ALL ALONE.

    (Bare-chested Joe Biden smashes out a Bruckheimer-esque percussion soundtrack.)

    A vote for Obama is like a vote for Hulk Hogan, practically? I mean, right? Sure, he would be a Stella Artois-drinking, arugula panini-grilling Hulk Hogan, but still... what could be more macho?

    The Marbleman wrote:

    Everytime I get disgusted with reactionary stupidity on the right, I can reliably turn to find eye-glazed leftist moralizing and hero-worship.  All the dear-leaderish undertones make me realize I'm seeing a weaker strain of Kim Jong-Ilia.  Not to compare Obama directly to the late despot, but his lickspittle toadies will rationalize anything he does.  I have to tell myself that it's all a show to energize the base, otherwise it's too frightening to contemplate.

    Two responses to that:

    1. Oh man, here we go with the fence-sitting -- compare the natures of the stupidities of both parties, Marbleman, and make your choice, or (as you said yourself) get into a Ron Paulian bi-plane and fly off to tilt at politically idealistic windmills. At least the right's wackos are fractious -- the left's wackos are really, really well-organized. It's a turd sandwich either way, sure, but go with the smaller, less-turdy sandwich.

    2. These ridiculous episodes created by both parties work -- they must, or why spend millions creating them? I couldn't even stand weathering Republican political rallies, they're so charged with nonsense. There will likely never be a candidate who operates with a level of candor approaching a normal person. But what does the advertising tell you about the reality -- that's what terrifies me. Someone is buying this crap! A lot of people, in fact. (Cowers.)

    The Marbleman wrote:

    Obama's numbers in the swing states are abysmal.  Guggeheim and his ilk are rightly concerned that the Democrats' smirky triumphalism at Republican bloodletting is putting them off guard.  But if they think this patronizing propaganda is going to help, they're more incompetent than I thought. 

    (Takes on the demeanor of 'The Most Interesting Man in the World', from the Dos Equis beer commercials.)

    "I don't always slip over the edge of a cliff; but when I do, I grasp at even the smallest bits of grass, shrubbery, weeds -- anything to avoid falling to my doom."

    Consider the reaction to Santorum's clumsy upbraidment of Obama over the federal funding of abortifacients and condoms. Someone with more sense would tread carefully, but the Democrats were able to make the statement that those who object to contraception should not be forced to subsidize it, into a full out assault on women. Grab those dandelion stalks Obama, grab 'em!

    There's hardly anything that this administration says that carries an ounce of truth in it anymore.

    Romney is the best choice -- Obama should be done come the fall. Focus on the numbers. Obama's record does not add up. It's not that Obama has lied (although he has) it is the fact that the Dissembler-in-Chief's policies were failures. He got what he wanted, and now the economy is coming back ever so slightly not because of anything Obama did, but in spite of his policies.

  • Obama Re-Election Video   2 years 5 weeks ago

    So Piers Morgan, whose voice normally makes my stomach rebel, interviewed director Davis Guggenheim on this.  I started laughing so hard I couldn't breathe, my dog was barking, my friend thought I was having a seizure for a moment.  General bedlam.  The impetus:

    Morgan:  "Most documentary makers balance these movies with the negatives as well as the positives.  So what are the negatives in your movie about Barack Obama?"

    Guggenheim:  "The negatives were there were too many accomplishments."

    And better:

    Morgan:  "Where do you find fault in him personally?"

    Guggenheim:  (huge pause, deep looks of introspection)  "You know, I - I don't, really."

    Morgan:  (incredulous) "He's a perfect human being?

    Guggenheim:  (another big pause, maybe he has to think about that too)  "Well.  No.  But I'm really quite in awe of him as a leader."

    Finally, when discussing the funding for the movie:

    Morgan:  "I'm surprised you weren't paying him from the sound of things."

    Anyway, I gather we can all save 17 minutes.  Basically this is a call to the leftist base urging them to ignore the fact that Barry hoodwinked them as well as the rest of the country.  I guess they'll just play an endless loop of repealing DODT and OBL.  Since that is all the administration can lay claim to, even tentatively.

    Everytime I get disgusted with reactionary stupidity on the right, I can reliably turn to find eye-glazed leftist moralizing and hero-worship.  All the dear-leaderish undertones make me realize I'm seeing a weaker strain of Kim Jong-Ilia.  Not to compare Obama directly to the late despot, but his lickspittle toadies will rationalize anything he does.  I have to tell myself that it's all a show to energize the base, otherwise it's too frightening to contemplate.

    Obama's numbers in the swing states are abysmal.  Guggeheim and his ilk are rightly concerned that the Democrats' smirky triumphalism at Republican bloodletting is putting them off guard.  But if they think this patronizing propaganda is going to help, they're more incompetent than I thought. 

    . . .

    . . .

    . . .

     

     

     (Edited by Krog -- added direct YouTube link to video source.)

  • Video Game Reviewer Needed   2 years 5 weeks ago

     That's a very interesting idea! And one that developers might actually consider with the skyrocketing costs of top tier games production! And the relationship between game makers and gamers is a love hate relationship....best example I can come up with is actually going on as of this writing with a very prominent title that just released.

    www.forbes.com/sites/erikkain/2012/03/13/mass-effect-3-and-the-pernicious-myth-of-gamer-entitlement/

    and here 

    www.ps3trophies.com/forums/mass-effect-3/13539-mass-effect-3-pernicious-myth-gamer-entitlement.html

    There are a few game franchises that I would love to be able to be a part of to some degree...Street Fighter is obviously one.

    One problem I see is the obvious one, what if you contributed X$ and the end result is crap or worse yet vaporware! What kind of insurance is there against fraud?

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