Friday, April 30, 2010

No one sees and no one cares What gets broken Not for rhyme and not for reason

(Retitled & revised version of earlier post)

Obama shelves new offshore drilling

Mike Brewer, 40, who lost his oil spill response company in the devastation of Hurricane Katrina nearly five years ago, said the area was accustomed to the occasional minor spill. But he feared the scale of the escaping oil was beyond the capacity of existing resources.

"You're pumping out a massive amount of oil. There is no way to stop it," he said.

First post: Just when I didn't think I could get any more pissed at our bastard government.

About that oil spill (which, BTW, as of last night was so big you could see it from space)...

The Institute for Marine Mammal Studies in Gulfport has surgery, necropsy and exam rooms, walk-in freezers full of frozen fish for food, X-ray and ultrasound machines and plenty of medicine. The nonprofit facility also has eight large pools, which have been cleaned and prepared to handle sea turtles, manatees and dolphins.

Center director Dr. Moby Solangi said Friday the site will be "ground zero" for injured marine mammals.

Solangi said there are roughly up to 5,000 dolphins in the Gulf area between the Mississippi and Louisiana coasts and the oil rig, many giving birth right now.

"It's very bad timing," Solangi said. "We're going to have a lot of babies here. We're looking at a colossal tragedy."

Baby dolphins. Do you hear me? Baby dolphins!

(Not baby dolphins...)

God forbid...

Yahoo! News asks: What would have to happen for Arnold Schwarzenegger to be able to run for president of the US? (Rather a lot, really). But you know what?

If this were to happen, I am absolutely sure that every one of the "birthers" would be all for it. Every. Single. One.

Lego genius.

This is via the Total Film Facebook page.

I never warmed to Joss Whedon's Dollhouse...

Creatively it just didn't set my tail a-wagging, plus I'm convinced (justifiably or not) that Fox renewed it at the expense of Terminator: Connor Chronicles. However, this ad, which I don't think I'd seen before, is both pretty cool and pretty hot.


One thing I cannot abide is a disorderly rampage


Thursday, April 29, 2010

If only.

White House advisers acknowledged on Thursday that a massive oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico could force the president to reconsider plans to open coastal areas to offshore drilling. But they suggested that no revision in policy would be announced in the immediate future.

In a briefing with the press, key members of the Obama energy, homeland security and press team stressed that their focus remains, at this point in time, on blunting the impact of the BP oil spill -- which was designated with the label: of "national significance."

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

I never in my life thought that I would...

...ever, ever feel sorry for anyone from the KKK-connected, anti-gay, conservative Family Research council.But the guy interviewed by Jon Stewart tonight was such an idiot I did feel bad for him, if only for a moment.

It was just so obvious that Jon could've, were he not such a gracious host, beaten this guy up and taken his lunch money, intellectually...

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Oh, happy day.

Courtney Love is back on the Letterman show tonight...this should be fun (ooh, mama).

BTW, Dave's other guest tonight? Michael Caine. Now that's must-see TV.

Calvin and Hobbes: Black and White

One of my favorites of the Calvin and Hobbes strips.

'80s toys were the best

(Of course, this isn't actually one. It's a viral ad for Toy Story 3. You gotta love how much they made it like a commercial from "my" decade, though--right down to giving it the look of having been transferred from old video tape. With tracking problems, yet.)

Monday, April 26, 2010

You have to wonder how Tennessee missed out on this one

Per The Rachel Maddow Show...

...state and local offices in Florida, Mississippi, Georgia, Alabama and Texas are closed today for Confederate Memorial Day, marking the South's surrender to Union General William T. Sherman in 1865 posters go, this is sorta not bad

Ho-ly shit

'Scuse me...Sawgasm.

After spending the last five Saw films wondering whatever happened to Cary Elwes' character Dr Lawrence Gordon, it looks like Saw VII will finally give us our answer.


Lionsgate has revealed that Elwes will be starring in the seventh instalment of the horror phenomenon, and fans will finally learn just exactly what Dr Gordon has been doing all this time.

Actually "fans" know that it hasn't really been that much time...the Saw installments, taken together, add up to less than a year of "in-world" time. But that's neither here nor there...ohboyohboyohboyohboyohboy...

Sunday, April 25, 2010

Thank goodness for John A. Lasseter

Some traditions should not be forgotten. Fortunately Lasseter, who is chief creative officer both at Pixar Animation Studios and Walt Disney Feature Animation, agrees.

And by green-lighting The Princess and the Frog; handpicking Ron Clements and John Musker to direct and write it, and giving them their heads, he gave the rest of us animation lovers a gift.

I used to say The Iron Giant was the last great traditionally animated movie. I'm not sure I can say that anymore.

Disney's had a lot of shots taken at it over the years for playing it too safe with their films; at least some of those shots were deserved. So it's always refreshing when we get one that takes a risk or two.

Yet at the same time as it takes risks, The Princess and the Frog feels like it could have been made nearly at any time from the '50's onward. It's as magical to look at as Sleeping Beauty, with a better story and characters than Beauty and the Beast.

And a new Disney "Princess" who's notable for more than one reason. As was much talked about in publicity during the making of the film, Tiana is Disney's first African-American star character and yes, it's about time.

But if that were all she was, this could've been a Ralph Bakshi movie. Better yet, with both a good side and faults, she's a more well-rounded character than we've seen in a Disney heroine since at least The Little Mermaid.

And Ariel, fun-loving and sweet as she was, was also a girl willing to give up virtually everything in her life to marry her handsome prince.

To coin a phrase: Tiana does not play that.

The movie has its faults as well as its good side too, even if you can't tell from everything I've said so far.

For one thing, John Goodman has probably done three or four too many cartoon voices at this point.

And the villain is not as frightening as he could've been--even in a children’s' movie.

But on the other flipper, Goodman's role is really only a side character in the movie. And the villain is actually more of a middleman--he has "friends on the other side," who are scary.

The movie owes a debt to more than one Disney classic. The Jungle Book is one such acknowledged, especially in its music, which is jazz, and the swamp settings reminded me of The Rescuers (that was the first Disney animated film I remember seeing new, in the theater).

I do not consider these flaws, however. Where jazz in the Indian jungle was an anachronism (don't get me wrong, Jungle Book is one of my very favorite Disney movies), Princess and the Frog is deliberately set in 1920s New Orleans.
I think its Randy Newman's most inspired score.

As for The Rescuers, the new film is not imitative of that fond memory of my youth, but evocative of it. From the ads, I admit, I was afraid Ray the firefly might be a clone of The Rescuers' dragonfly Evinrude.

But Ray's role in this story is, I think, another Disney first.

I can't say more for fear of spoilers. But suffice it to say for now he reminds me of the famous Oscar Wilde quote:

We are all in the gutter, but some of us are looking at the stars.

That's right-I just equated an Oscar Wilde quote with an animated firefly.

That's just how I roll.

Another nice twist on expectations comes when we meet what we assume will be the hero's funny sidekick ("Dance with me, fat man!")--and we're wrong.

(Not about him being funny)

When I said this movie feels like it could've been made in the '60s, '70s or '80s (etc), I meant that as a compliment, but it also may be why it wasn't as big of a hit as it flipping' well should've been.

Can a general audience just not tell a good movie from shiny SFX anymore?* I'm used to wondering that about movies like the frickin' Clash of the Titans remake (grumble, grumble, grumble) but I guess, maybe without even realizing it, I thought a classic piece of Disney animation would be immune.

This is traditional, hand-drawn, Disney animation, and it's fucking gorgeous.

This is the kind of movie they mean when they say, "They don't make them like that anymore."

*Yeah, I know, I know...could they ever? See Batman & the Hook of the Crystal Skull (Prince of Thieves).

The Across The Universe movie is less than the sum of its parts...

...but this is a good one.

(And in case you didn't know, that's Joe Cocker singing most of it)