Monday, July 21, 2008

Monday Missives

Happy Monday, folks. It's nice outside, a little too warm for me, but still nice. That means I'll probably be playing softball tonight, which makes me happy. My team badly needs a win after dropping like four in a row. Pathetic.

Anyway, I got lots of e-mails this weekend about where my Weekend Preview video is hiding. Well, it's not hiding. We didn't do one last week. The online department was busy getting this very good package together, which is sad because I actually had some funny ideas. I mean, I would have discussed ABBA. Yep.

So "The Dark Knight" broke all kinds of box-office records. I caught the film Friday afternoon at the wonderful Criterion Cinemas. Oscar talk may be a little much, and the movie definitely drags at the end because it is so, so long, but this is a very, very good movie. I really enjoyed it. Like everyone else, I would totally recommend it, but don't go in thinking it's perfect or anything.

Richard Roeper is leaving "At The Movies with Ebert and Roeper" next month. This is kind of sad. I've always thought that when Gene Siskel died, the show went a bit downhill because Roger Ebert and Roeper tended to not be as critical as Siskel, but over the years, I've come to enjoy Roeper. So he's leaving for a new show, and who knows when Ebert's health issues will get better and let him rejoin some show. It's a sad day, sort of, for movie fans.

This is one of my nightmares come true. Seriously. I really can't stand people who aren't funny and can't act. Honestly, why him? I would have taken the job.

Another old character is returning to "90210." Does anyone really know what to expect from this? And will it actually take in decent ratings? I really have no idea.

I caught a couple shows this weekend. Doctors & Dealers put on a very good show at The Space Friday, and even got a bunch of the kids in the audience dancing along. That was something. And Film School, who I thought would be good, put on one of my favorite performances of the year so far at BAR last night. I mean, man, it was seriously amazing. Walls of sound with nuance. You don't get that often. A killer drummer. I could go on and on.

Kevin Smith is making an X-rated movie. Well, that's true if this were 1975, not 2008, when we use the term "NC-17."

A whole lot of Starbucks will close. Yep, 600 of them, to be exact, including five in the good ol' Nutmeg State. Here's a list.

I'm going to end this post by stating the obvious: Will Sheff is the greatest songwriter around, right now. I know folks are going to disagree with me, but the Okkervil River frontman honestly has no competition right now. I can't think of any band that has made five killer records in a row to start a career, all better than the next. There are no disappointments. When "The Stand-Ins" (out Sept. 9) arrived Thursday, I got incredibly giddy, then I got nervous that it wouldn't be as good as the amazing "The Stage Names." But this is, again, Okkervil's best work. I'm not going to review it here, but I can't stop listening to it. I'm listening right now. What a good last month or so for music. Seriously.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Greeting Un-Video'ed One. Some random notes for you:

1. I wish you would have told us about the video. Many of us were forced to resort to watching funny baby videos on You Tube. It's just not the same. And - just for the record - babies perpetually mangle the words to ABBA.

2. So, I guess we more or less agree on Dark Knight. I said it was good. Just not THAT good. Not transcendental good. Not "willing to stand in those godawful lines at the cineplex" good. And yes, the Oscar hooha is definitely excessive. Would we really be drooling as much if Mr. Ledger was still with us? And it was toooo loooong. Bigger isn't always better.

3) Today, Ebert also announced that he is ditching the show (or at least removing his name, since he has not appeared in over two years). I'm hoping maybe they can get Statler and Waldorf to take the balcony seats. Bonus points to those of you keeping score who get the reference.

4) Neither Conan NOR Fallon are remotely funny. One can only hope they resurrect test patterns to fill that two hour block each night. Somewhere, Jimmy Kimmel is smiling big. Just not Sarah Silverman big.

5) Zack and Miri isn't a porno flick, despite the title. No moreso than "Boogie Nights" was a porno. I read an early draft of the script and - despite some good dirty jokes spewed by Rogan - it actually devolves into a kind of drippy romantic comedy in Act III. So, don't be fooled by the title. Smut, it ain't. Rest assured, Smith will cut it to an "R".

6) Sadness reins. I was a true fanboy geek for the early days of the X Files. I lived for 9:00 on Friday nights (before they hopped to Sunday), especially the standalone monster eps. I even sat through the dullsville first feature thanks to my love fo Mulder and Scully. So I was pretty stoked when they announced the second flick, and dropped all the alien mythology mumbo jumbo in lieu of a promised frightfest. Well, I saw "I Want To Believe" over the weekend at a critic's screening - and it sucks pretty bad. A dull story, no real monster or scary elements, and worst of all, Duchovney and Anderson seem bored out of their minds. And why, oh why, is Xzibit in this movie? Bad, bad, bad. Don't waste your cash, even if you're a fan of the show. Personally, I hope that "Step Brothers" washes the bad taste of this movie out of my brain.

7) I wish I could get half as elated and excited as you do over CD releases and good rock shows. Seriously. I envy that kind of unbridled enjoyment.

That's all for now.
Good luck on the diamond tonight!