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Sunday, 29 May 2011

Swim Good

It's that time again! I've got a major essay due in two weeks time but I took the liberty of doing some early research on my topic of choice. I feel almost guilty that I'm allowed to write an essay on action cinema of the 1980's. I'll just be watching "Rambo" and "Predator" on a loop from here on out.


Finished "L.A. Noire" yesterday and feel like a boss. The third act of the game kind of falls apart but nonetheless it is a fairly fun game to play through but it's not what I expected. I went in thinking it would be like an open-world/sandbox experience much like "Grand Theft Auto" and "Red Dead Redemption" before it but the game is fairly linear. Detective work - as intriguing and fun as it may be - can get repetitive and feel stale after a while. But the more you discover as a detective through your sweep of the crime scene and the interrogation of witnesses and potential suspects makes each case more and more interesting as you probe deeper. Not as much depth but still a fun time to be had, especially when it's in the 1940's. Classy times.


Speaking of video games, I was tempted into buying "Dragon Age: Origins" this week. EB Games has a ridiculous sale going on right now that saw this fantasy RPG go on sale for only $30. The best part about it is that this is the Ultimate Edition which comes with the expansion pack and a whole multitude of other missions and bonus content. Normally this would be a lot more expensive, probably around $50 - $80 so to get it at $30 is quite a steal. Goodbye social life.


So everyone knows who Adele is right? Of course you do. Now while I was already aware of who Adele was, I hadn't actually heard her music until this week (shame, shame, shame). Her smash hit, "Rolling In The Deep" currently has 67 million+ views on YouTube and she seriously deserves all those views. I honestly didn't think her music and voice would reach such a massive pop-listening audience though but she deserves it all. Loving Adele just as much as the next guy.


People should also listen to Frank Ocean. I only heard about him through Childish Gambino who name dropped him in one of his songs and decided to follow up and I'm glad I did. RnB can go eat its heart out because this guy's tracks are just gonna kill every other RnB artist out there.



This week's big release came in the form of "The Hangover Part 2". Prior the film's imminent release, I actually had not seen the first film in the series but was mildly excited anyway for the sequel mostly due to the hype surrounding it. So I saw both of those films this week as well as "In the Loop", a small film that satirizes politics and war.

"The Hangover" is one of those very rare success stories that helped launch the careers of Bradley Cooper, Zack Galifianakis and Ed Helms.The film did amazingly well at the box-office - far more than producers could've expected. The premise of the film works wonders for comedic promise and delivers on all fronts of gross-out laughs. Often times, comedy films don't have much of a story but the genius behind making a film revolve around guys trying to piece together the events that happened the night before certainly makes for some interesting story beats along the way. Our three leads work together very well and work off one another very well - much of which is a testament to the directorial efforts of Todd Phillips. However, as funny as the film may be, it wasn't as funny as I had hoped it to be. Was it because the film had been spoiled by most of my friends? Was it because some of the jokes weren't quite my type of humour? Humour is subjective after all and it's hard to gauge just how successful a comedy film will be with audiences. A tad overrated, but still a fun film to watch.


Well paint me surprised.
"In the Loop" is a small independently financed political satire film that pokes fun at the behind-the-scenes world of politics. Now while politics isn't necisarrily a subject of particular interest to most people, "In the Loop" fiercely attacks politics with sheer wit - it's smart and bold but also very funny. The film's premise revolves around the idea that the US and the UK want to begin a "war" need a reason to do so. And with that come the spin doctors, media directors and political personell who all have a part in trying to "articulate" their words and feelings in a way that expresses either their pro-war or anti-war sentiments. Their screw-ups is the stuff of comedy gold. The cast is fantastic, especially Peter Capaldi who plays the brutal and fierce Malcom Tucker. He is vicious in the film and is also endlessly hilarious whenever he throws a fit at anyone. Absolutely quotable, he is. If you like your humour a bit black and smart, try "In the Loop".


This week's major release "The Hangover Part 2" tries to capitalise on the success of the original but is it as funny as it's predecessor? The film begins with an all too-familiar scene. Phil and the boys are lost and have no idea what to do. Phil says that they've screwed up again and the camera pans back to reveal that they are on top of a building overlooking the rest of Bangkok. Cut to opening credits over a montage of shots of Bangkok. While the locations may be different this time around, the film is still very much the same as it's predecessor. Everything feels familiar and feels very much the same as the one that came before it. What's amazing is how much of the story feels as familiar as the first film with the characters finding themselves in similar situations. Does this make the film any less good? No it doesn't. The formula for the first film worked, so why wouldn't it work a second time around? But, for all intents and purposes, "Part 2" is pretty much feels like a remake of the first one, just transposed from Las Vegas to Bangkok. Again, our three leads work together very well and the humour may be subjective amongst most people but for this viewer it was good enough to get uproarious laughter from me.



Here is a trailer for "50/50" a dramedy about a man who finds out he's diagnosed with terminal cancer and finds it hard to come to terms with the fact that this could be the end for him. It's a deeply personal project for screenwriter, Will Reiser, who himself modelled the story over his bout with cancer. So basically if I had to dumb it down a bit, the film is basically "Funny People" except without comedians. And I'd like to think that almost anything with Joseph Gordon-Levitt is going to be pretty decent, lol. Supporting cast includes Bryce Dallas Howard, Seth Rogen, Angelica Huston and Anna Kendrick. Nice cast.

There's news that David O.Russell (director of "The Fighter") has left the Uncharted live action movie project which has made the fanboy in me giddy with glee. What he was going to be doing to the Uncharted franchise didn't sound particularly sound all that wonderful to me but I'm glad that they won't be going with his idea and that he's left the directorial chair open to someone else.

And here's a fan-recorded trailer of David Fincher's (director of "The Social Network") American adaptation of "The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo". I haven't seen the original nor have I read the books but the film looks like classic Fincher. Expect no less, I suppose. Looks amazing, I'll probably post an official HD version sometime later this week and replace it.


And that's it this week. Wanna see something cool/creepy/awesome/funny?

End post.

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