Friday, April 18, 2008

Prom Night (McCormick, 2008)

I feel the need to explain myself on this one. Kate and I were looking at our options a few days ago. We were deciding what movie we wanted to see (we decided upon Leatherheads, and made a good choice). During our search, we happened upon the, "Prom Night" trailer. We both looked at each other and laughed. Fast-forward to tonight. Kate is at another tattoo studio, working out of town. I'm at the house, reading blogs, listening to talk radio, and going stir crazy. I then realize that my Friday night can either be spent watching movies that I love and own (ie movies I've seen a thousand times), or staring at Odorous Jr. OJO's a cool dog, but he's light on conversation. I start looking at movies and showtimes, and realize I've either seen it, or I know it's going to suck. Those were my options. I narrowed the list of crap movies down to, "88 Minutes", and "Prom Night". My logic went something like, "well, Prom Night is going to suck, but it's a horror film". A bad horror movie is always better to me than a so-so drama/action/adventure/drama-action-adventure-romantic-comedy. It's 9:22pm, and the movie theater is 3o minutes away. I have 28 minutes until I miss the trailers (I am in total fear of missing the trailers because they may be the best part of my movie night). I told OJO to watch the place, and then I jet. I listen to Radio Classics on XM, as they replay a Sherlock Holmes episode from the forties. I arrive in the nick of time. Popcorn, check. Coke, check. Assure myself that there is no error made by the theater employee; popcorn and drink are, in fact, more expensive than the price of admission. Check. The movie experience is already bad, as I realize I have indeed missed the previews. There I sat, watching a bad film that I knew would be bad, but not kicking myself because I knew I had to know, or else I would have wondered all night, thinking, "surely it would have been better to see Prom Night instead of sitting here with OJO". Forty-five minutes in, I'm wondering what I'm missing on XM radio's, Radio Classics. Fifty minutes in, I'm walking out of the theater. I've only walked out of about three movies- Stallone's, "Driven", some flick I can't remember, and "Prom Night". I drove home listening to the sound of wind, hoping to erase from my mind that last hour of my life. I'm now home, with twenty bucks less in my pocket, a couple less gallons in my car, and infinitely more willing to sit and watch a movie with OJO. Why did I tell you all this? Because it only takes one word to sum up, "Prom Night", and I felt like writing more than a word.

Blog Talk Radio

I have a new hobby. It's Yet another example of the wonder of the internet. The blog gave ordinary people a platform to voice their stifled opinion. Blog Talk Radio has created a minor leagues of talk radio. Anyone can be a host. I can't wait to see the success stories of people that started out on blogtalkradio, put out a portfolio of their work, and were picked up by a standard radio station. No longer can the average person complain that their voice is not heard; the people have a forum! Life is grand.

Sunday, April 06, 2008

The Ruins (Smith, 2008)

I was impressed with Carter Smith's directorial debut, "The Ruins". The modern American horror film tends to go off into scientific explanations for monsters, zombies, vampires, etc. Smith didn't go down that road. He kept it simple. Four friends and a guide, a Mayan ruin in Mexico, and deadly vines. Basic, and basically horrific! By keeping the plot simple, the audience was able to focus on the unnerving quandary of the four main characters- run from their Mayan temple prison, and be shot, or stay and be invaded by carnivorous vines. I'm a gore and horror veteran, but even I had to turn away in disgust during some scenes (that's not a bad thing). Jonathan Tucker, Jena Malone, Shawn Ashmore, and Laura Ramsey did a great job of engaging the audience with their characters' dilemma. "The Ruins", could have been a campy run-of-the-mill horror flick, but to their credit, the main characters were interesting enough to keep that from happening. Kudos to Jena Malone (Donnie Darko), she was superb, as usual. I highly recommend this film!

Saturday, April 05, 2008


I often marvel at the phenomenon of the blogosphere. It is no small wonder that, for the first time in human history, hundreds of millions of people have a voice in world affairs. Information is no longer the privilege of a few power players- everyone that has access to a computer (the number of people that fit into that category is growing exponentially) has the opportunity to express their opinions on any subject they choose. In recent history, information was dictated only by the major media outlets, primarily television, print, and radio. That has changed dramatically in the last ten years. Occassionally you will see articles published by the mainstream media decrying the surge of amateur journalists via the internet, particularly the blogs. I don't believe they fear their demise, but rather that they no longer have a monopoly on the dissemination of information. It's not that the mainstream media is irrelevant, but that their audience can now discuss blatant bias. Bias isn't a bad thing, but until recent history bias went unanswered- the other side never got to put in their two cents. The blogosphere is a realm for people of all walks of life to discuss and debate the news of the day in a way that is unprecedented. That is a beautiful thing.

I would like to see the blogs take another step towards legitimacy. I would like to see more people scrap their anonymous handles and post comments in their own name. To put it bluntly- if you aren't willing to put your real name by your opinions then your opinions mean little or nothing. Jimbob247652 may have wonderful things to say, but has abolutely zero credibility. The debate over ideas of our time needs to be done by real people, not anonymous folks that are bold enough to make outlandish statements, but cowardly enough to do so under an anonymous handle. This post isn't directed towards anyone specifically, it's just something that's been on my mind. Unless you are in the witness protection program, what reason do you have to hide your identity? Have the courage to stand by what you write- use your real name. Let's increase the credibility of the collective voice of the blog.