Category Archives: Entertainment

Barton Parsley

Sunday, 02-Nov-2014

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Gravity

Tonight Gerri and I saw a preview of “Gravity“, an Alfonso Cuarón film starring Sandra Bullock and George Clooney. We got to see the movie compliments of Klout.com and Warner Bros. Studios.

The movie is a fairly obvious allegory with predictable characters. Clooney does a good job of playing his character but he is playing the part of George Clooney. You can say the same, more or less, for Bullock but she had more of an opportunity give her character a separate personality than just Bullock playing Bullock.

The visuals of this movie were excellent and 3D was effectively used without keeping you aware that you are watching a 3D movie. CGI was also very well done and had me believing the characters were actually in zero gravity.

Overall this is an enjoyable movie just not a “must see” movie. I’ll give it a thumbs up and I recommend it only if you want to see a movie and nothing else is on that you would rather see.

Dude — The Guy Was Just Money

Kobe Bryant names his top five all time NBA stars with a special acknowledgement of rival Celtics player Larry Byrd.

“I will say, as the years go on, people really forgot how great Larry Bird was,” he said. “He was ridiculous. And I grew up in L.A. — just like everyone else here — hating his guts. Dude — the guy was just money.”

via Kobe Bryant Says Larry Bird ‘Was Just Money,’ Most People Have Forgotten ‘How Great’ He Was | Boston Celtics | NESN.com.

It’s still a problem

Almost ten years ago I wrote this article about my take on why we didn’t have HBO delivered over the Internet. It was based on an article by Jack Valenti, then the president of the Motion Picture Association of America and now deceased. Well, we now have Internet streaming of movies through Netflix and some other services but there isn’t as complete a library as there should be and the reason is that the MPAA is still attempting to achieve relevance.

It’s a Pitiful, Dreadful Life

Dan points to a New York Times article on “It’s a Wonderful Life” that points out how dark of a movie the movie really was. I loved this movie and have probably watched it over a dozen times. I’ll sit through it again this holiday season if I get the chance. I’ve never thought of it in the manner that Wendell Jameson presents it in the article but I won’t be able to help from looking at it in this way the next time I watch it.

Google has the full length version of the movie online. It’s embedded behind the fold.
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The Broker

I just finished up John Grisham’s The Broker. It was a decent story and a page turner but the ending was just too aburpt. This ending just left me dissatisfied with the book overall. Grisham has done much better with his endings in the past and this book deserved a much better ending.

New Content in Sidebar

I’ve added a little thingy to the sidebar that I will keep my current book stack in. The one on the top is the one I’m about to start reading or am currently reading. As you can see, right now I’m reading Nelson DeMille’s Night Fall and really enjoying the read.

The book is about the crash of TWA Flight 800, a crash which took the lives of over two hundered people on board. While the official explanation for the crash is a short circuit in the center fuel tank I’ve never been fully satisified that that was all there was to it. I don’t necessarily believe it was a terroist attack that brought the plane down but I’m certainly not satisfied that it was just a short circuit in a level probe.

There is a short essay on Amazon about why Mr. DeMille wrote this book.

I’m back…

Hello, I’m back from vacationing in Cancun, Mexico. Pictures of the trip can be seen here in my photo gallery. I’ll write up a little about what I saw and what I did in the next day or so.

While I was gone Dan got to talking about books with a set of questions. While I’m not one of the five people he asked to answer the same questions I figured it wouldn’t be a bad exercise.

Total Number of books I’ve owned
I really have no idea. I probably have a couple of hundred in my posession right now and I tend to give away my paperbacks or just leave them where I finish them.

Last book I bought
I bought two books to take to Cancun with me, Occidentalism; The West in the Eyes of Its Enemies by Ian Buruma and Avishai Margalit and Whispering Nickel Idols by Glen Cook.

Last book I read
I’ve got a few pages left to read in Whispering Nichol Idols. I’ve always liked Glen Cook’s Garrett series for killing time in airports and waiting rooms.

Last book I finished
I finished Occidentalism sitting on the patio of my hotel room in Cancun while recovering from my climb up to the top of the temple at Chichen-itza. The ride out to Chichen-itza and back through the villages in that area gave me a little somethin to consider as I read the book. I want to get those thoughts down in here in the next day or so before they completely leave me.

Five books that mean a lot to me
These may seem not be of any help to anyone else looking for meaning or answers to life’s questions but they do to me.

  1. Where The Red Fern Grows probably instilled my love of books when I was a youngster.
  2. Lord of the Flies kept me interested in books through the teenage years.
  3. The Hobbit opened up the world of fantasy books to me.
  4. Stranger in a Strange Land introduced me to Heinlein and some of my most enjoyable reading for years after.
  5. The Holy Bible; New International Translation taught me faith, taught me atheism, brought me back to a point of agnosticism and finally back to faith. It was my journey of running from God that brought me back to Him and reading the Bible was instrumental to it all.

Five people I’d like to see to do this as well
Felix, Cat, Jeff, Josh and Barry.

Neil Gaiman Reports Will Eisner’s Passing

Will Eisner, the man who gave Jack Kirby his start is dead at the age of 87. Neil Gaiman tells a little of what Eisner meant to him.

I was woken up this morning, with the news that Will had died last night, aged 87, and I’ve let a few friends know, and already had to speak to one journalist about who Will was and what he did (“It’s as if Orson Welles had made Citizen Kane and redefined what you could do in film, and then carried on making movies until now,” I said, wishing I could come up with a better analogy, and knowing that that didn’t explain it. And I didn’t mention how proud he was of any of us who did good comics — how much he cared about the medium — or how glad I am that I got to tell him that I wouldn’t have written comics if it wasn’t for him. There’s a reason that the Oscars of comics are the Eisner Awards.)

Eisner created the graphic novel that Gaiman has done so well with.

Homegrown Democrat

I’ve been a fan of Garrison Keillor for a long time. Something about his voice, his writing and the delivery of his writings on Public Radio’s “A Prairie Home Companion” just makes me feel good. I really like his humor. So the other night while I was at Barnes & Noble Booksellers I had to remind myself of my budget while thumbing through his book “Homegrown Democrat”. I didn’t buy the book but I’ve found the first four chapters online and I’ve read them.

So far this book almost makes me want to stop being an Independant and go out and become a Democrat. I will be picking up the book when I next get paid.

Superbowl XXXVIII

The score is 14 to 7 at the half. The half time show just went off and it was horrible. The commercials, so far, haven’t been all that great. All I can say is that I’m glad it’s a decent football game for a change.

Boot Scooting with Terri Clark

I told Gerri that when I went back to work I’d take her to a local Country and Western night club for a night out. As luck would have it, Terri Clark was playing at Wild Bill’s last night, the first Friday night after finding regular employment.

It was fun. Terri is now my favorite guitarist. I knew she played but I didn’t realize how good she was until seeing her performance. I was amazed at her picking prowess.

She did a selection’s of the songs she played at the Orchid Lounge in Nashville when she first started out which included about four John Anderson songs that she did in John’s voice. The girl has a knack for comedy. If you get a chance to see one of her shows it’s well worth it. She’s not only country, she rocks, too.

Aside from the concert, Wild Bill’s was also a great place to do people watching. I hadn’t been out to a night club like this in quite some time, like ten years or longer, and things really hadn’t changed so much. I enjoyed watching the lounge lizards in cowboy hats getting shot down in flames and not being a bit deterred by that and going on to their next victim, occassionally having success. I enjoyed watching the girls who came there just to dance, with anyone, dancing to the dance floor and dancing back off again. I enjoyed watching the people wearing what they really shouldn’t have been wearing until they had spent a few years at the gym. A totally entertaining evening.

Oh, they had a mechanical bull, too. It was right next to our table.