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Monthly Archives: March 2010

Wolverine

You know what the best thing about the relatively new Wolverine and the X-Men cartoon? It doesn’t piss all over the X-Men? What’s that you say? Piss all over the X-Men? Get out of here!

Well you see with the advent of Bryan Singers’ X-Men flick Wolverine came to the forefront as being the Man in the X-Men. In the cartoon and the comics Wolverine was just one of the team bringing in his own strengths and weaknesses. But in the movie due to directorial decisions, the focus was placed purely on Wolverine. There’s nothing wrong with this on its own, but when the others are pretty much place holders it sucks.

Cyclops has always been my favourite X-Man. Besides being the leader, in the cartoon and comics he does quite a bit especially in the fights. In the first movie he’s sidelined behind Wolverine as is everyone else. In the second he disappears in to the ‘writer’s closet’ at the start of the film only to re-emerge at the end.  In the third he dies in the first five minutes. That’s what you call being pissed on. Fine you hate Cyclops. What about Rogue? She’s next to useless as is Storm. Jean Gray? Xavier? They’re all just hopeless before Wolverine shows up.

So back to the new cartoon, how do they shake things up? First they remove Jean Gray and Xavier (they are still there in the plot). This creates an angry, trigger happy, out of control Cyclops. They bring in Emma Frost to fill in the gap. Wolverine is forced to lead. Nightcrawler does a lot. As does Gambit, Rogue, Storm, Archangel, Beast, Shadow Cat and Ice Man (he didn’t do jack in the movie!). That’s good because each of these characters has  a loyal following that says he or she is the best X-Man.

In that regard Wolverine Origins was good. It focused on Wolverine and has some other characters showing up, all of whom at least did something for their limited screen time. There was talk of a Magneto movie, but that’s since been shelved and instead they’re re-telling the X-Men again. Let’s hope this time it’s about everyone and not just Wolverine.

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Dark Knight

"Dark Knight" by Thomas F Abrahamsson

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I will watch over you, through the darkness

I will come for you, wherever you be

I will go through hell and back for you

I will run the gauntlet, journey the seas

I will come to your aid in your time of need

There is no choice before me

For I am your slave… for now and forever

and you own me.

J'Taime by Amna A. Al-Thani

So she says. I don’t believe her. She barely knows me so how can it possibly be true?

I say… “I don’t believe you”. She says “You don’t have to believe it but I still feel that way”.

I say… “You barely even know me. It takes time.” She says “Whether its a short time or a long time it doesn’t change the way I feel”

I just don’t buy it. This just can’t be. It has to be a fun game which she assures me it’s not. She’s a nice person, I like talking to her. But do I feel anything toward her? How could I? I barely know her. I have to admit I get a little alarmed when she keeps repeating it. It’s only been 3 weeks.

Somehow I feel that if she did something stupid because she’s purportedly in love with me I would somehow be responsible. It’s like ‘true they did something stupid… but only because they love you’. How can you blame anyone for that?

This all sounds a little too far fetched. There has to be a catch right? Oh yeah… I forgot. She’s married and has a kid. She’s planning on getting divorced so she says. I don’t really want to get entangled in stuff like this. But because she’s married and has a kid sometimes I forget… she’s just a year older than me.

If I’m being ‘played’ for kicks… that’s ok. I’m immune to this kind of thing now.  If not… I really don’t know where this is all heading.

"I love you too honey!"

So you’ve been in a relationship for x amount of years now. Things used to be good and you couldn’t remember being happier. But then suddenly one day you wake up realize you’re not the same person anymore. Even scarier you realize that the relationship you’re in no longer works for you. The magic has long past and you’re still in it because… well just because you were in it yesterday.

Suddenly you think  maybe you should break away and start anew… but you’re afraid to let go of the past. But is there any point in holding on to something that is long gone? Just going through the motions when things are quite dead? Pretending things are the way they used to be and just holding on to memories? I would argue that the answer is a resounding no.

So many people stick in their marriages just because its convention and getting divorced, (especially for women) is a huge social stigma. Sure it’s not like that whole lets throw myself on my Husband’s flaming coffin kind of thing, but its sorta there.

But getting divorced is a huge ‘there’s something wrong with me. I can’t remain in a marriage. I am taboo.’ But really considering how hard it is to maintain a good relationship is it such a wonder that so many relationships fail? They fail on a regular basis… in fact we should have one of those clocks that says “x amounts of relationships have failed in the last 1 minute”.

I dunno. Personally I’d rather be dead than be stuck in a horrible relationship for life with someone I hate or even worse, someone I find ‘so so’. Why is ‘so so’ worse? Well quite simply you can’t even get the satisfaction of hating that person for being the slimeball that they are because maybe they are actually just plain nice if not ultimately boring. You’d just end up feel guilty.

Film Camera

It’s amazing what you can create with a simple little instrument like the camera. Sure they’ve evolved from their earliest days in to something significantly more complicated, but principally they remain the same.

Snap with a camera and you can see a snapshot of reality that you many not normally see. The better the camera the better the end result provided the person taking the shots has at least some slight skill with the camera.

The same principle applies to motion pictures and it was with some sadness that I watched the movie Wolfman. Why? Well quite simply because I realized that these guys were privy to some fantastic cameras combined with great lighting and pretty solid budget.

And yet the film had some piss poor cinematography throughout with scenes appearing as if they were quite randomly filmed. Absolutely no thought to where the camera was or how the actors were positioned. I was thinking about what kinds of things they could have done with the equipment.

In fact only at the end of the movie is there a scene in an antique store that is actually really interesting.

I’m completely against digital film. Why? Well traditional film is locked at 24fps that gives everything a truly cinematic look. Walk with a trench coat and at 24fps it looks graceful. Film at 30fps and it looks like your home video made with your camera. Toss in some moody lighting, and smoke and what you have is just truly beautiful. So when people waste such equipment its really sad.

Here are some scenes I thought were just wonderful uses of the film camera.

The Matrix

Dodge This

"Dodge This"

The Matrix is just filled with well thought out camera angles throughout the film. This shot is cool because its from the POV of the agent, looking out of the corner of his eye.

Star Wars Episode V: The Empire Strikes Back

Luke vs Vader

This movie is just got sci-fi written all over it. Miles above the other 5 Star Wars flicks it stands out on its own as an independent sci-fi flick. The scenes on Bespin are the best looking in the entire film with so much colour; blue, red, orange, black.

Blade Runner

Replicant on the Run

Replicant on the Run

Another sci-fi flick, Blade Runner has lots of thought put in to most of the scenes. Creating an overall image of sleaze is easier said then done, and a lot of new movies just clearly lack the effort.

There’s so many others but sadly I couldn’t find the pics. Oh well…

Work Harder... Support the Rich!

One of the worst feelings ever in my entire life was having to write. What’s that you say? What’s wrong with writing? Well nothing of course… until you consider the fact that I was forced to write for a living. Churning piece after piece with inadequate time to actually write properly. What was I writing? Articles for Article marketing.

What’s so bad about it? Well you just get to write 300 words about a host of destinations (If you’re in the travel industry) by browsing the net and essentially paraphrasing what other people have written. If you do take the time out to write a really good and well researched article… well you’re not even going to get the credit for it.

And then you’ve got the automatic formula for me to stop writing properly, and start churning out articles by the bucketload. Open doc, type, type, type, close. Rinse. Repeat. The entire experience becomes somewhat akin to working in a mine. Instead of breaking rocks with a pickaxe, you’re typing articles with your keyboard, but the feeling is similar. At the end of the day, you’re pretty tired. You go home to rest only to come back the next day and do the same thing again and again.

I began to hate writing. But it’s only recently that I realized that doing that wasn’t writing at all. That was just soulless garbage being churned out to meet corporate objectives and the bottom line.  It became a clear cut case of quantity over quality.

If you’re thinking 300 words doesn’t seem like much… well it isn’t, but that’s also the problem. You see you can’t really write about anything in so few words without taking the time to actually write a lot more and cut it down to spec. That’s hard. That’s why assignments and stuff sometimes have a strict word limit because you’re expected to present your idea succinctly. It also prevents copy-paste jobs.

After over year or so of writing that stuff I’d really had enough. I seriously just burnt out. Anyway after writing in other places I’ve decided I’m never going to stop writing. I just don’t want it to become a scenario of churning it out because then it becomes hell.

The Chorus from the song without music as always. Yeah I should probably do an entire song one of these days…

Vodpod videos no longer available.

more about “Heal The World“, posted with vodpod
Bully

Your Lunch Money or Your Life!

A long time ago when I was around 5, I found myself in school in Thailand. It was grade 1. Anyway it wasn’t long before I ended up getting in to trouble. Why did this happen? Well you see kids used to keep coming up to me and bugging me. They made faces and stuff… it was mainly because they were all ‘yellow’ and I the only ‘brown’ non oriental featured kid in the vicinity.

I remember looking at their contorted faces and thinking for about 2 seconds before I decided “Right! I don’t like this!” I then proceeded to do the sensible thing and punched the first kid in the face. He fell to the ground and the others ran.

This little trend carried on every day. I usually tried to disappear but couldn’t find a secluded spot… though sometimes I went really far away from grade 1 (for a 5 year old anyway). So, day after day I kept hitting these kids. It wasn’t long though until the authorities (school ones) began to notice a steady trail of sobbing kids which lead right back to lone brown kid.

So I was taken in to the office and asked why I did it. I gave them my standard lengthy “……” response at which they sighed. Upon my third visit they threatened to send a letter to my house at which I thought “Oh MAN! That’s not good!”

But I still carried on. Not by choice mind you, they kept coming and the end result was always the same. One day however I went home and my mother told me she got a letter saying that I was beating kids up. She asked what was up. I said “Nothing. Forget about it” whilst really thinking “Those NO GOOD BASTARDS!” My mother tends to worry a lot so I decided to launch an ‘action plan’!

Somewhere in the pipeline I kicked my class teacher for coming to the wrong conclusion. It was at that point she realized that maybe there was a little more going on here. Anyway she realized the whole scenario and helped out. I remember one day this kid came and stuck out his tongue and ran off. I was like “Grrrrr…. I am fuming with RAGE!” But my teacher was right there and she was like “Don’t…. Don’t…. Don’t!” and on the third I was flying down the corridors after that dude. I’m sure you can figure the rest.

Eventually though I managed to end that whole thing. But there was still a dude called Micheal from kindergarten whom I hated cos he hated me. I remember thinking “Yay… first grade! No more Michael!” And then guess who shows up at the same school a few days later!

Anyway this guy had even more of a problem with me in first grade. I used to win the little races we used to have in school and he hated it. One day to stop me in PE he held me by the shirt and I kept trying to run, but it kept stretching and stretching. Finally I was like “Fine… you want this. Here!” And using the fact that he was pulling me I just turned in to him and slammed my fist in to his face at which point he let go and cupped his nose. I ran the race afterward and came in second to last!

After that public humiliation he decided to call his brother in to teach me some manners. The guy came twice. He towered over me. I was 5. He brought a ruler that he smacked in to his hand whilst asking me why I had beat his brother up.  I gave my standard “….” for both visits and stared upward at him. I knew I was dead though if he did anything. His second visit was tamer because I think he realized I wasn’t going to cry or wet my pants and that his empty threats were useless. He never returned.

Ah… life in first grade! So much more happened, but perhaps I’ll leave that for another day!