first day of new job is tomorrow, not too excited; i'm always more nervous for a first day of work than anything else. that said, it's not really going to be work, i don't think. i'm pretty sure the first week is just 8 hours of training a day, which seems tedious, but i like learning so maybe it'll be interesting.
saw the classic 1983 ncaa championship game tonight. nc state vs. houston. houston (led by olajuwon and drexler) was the heavy favorite, but nc state won on that last second air ball that was turned into an alley oop. it's a great play and most of the game was fun enough, but the last couple of minutes were odd. there was no shot clock or three point line back then so nc state had to foul houston even though there were a couple minutes left and they were only down by 4 points. the most exciting thing was how on fire nc state got - they made like 5 three-point distance jumpers in a row to catch up. otherwise it was all houston. overall it was a nice game, but it just didn't live up to the hype and it had that unusual rhythm because of the fouling. that's one thing that i really liked about the ucla/gonzaga game - i don't think ucla fouled gonzaga at all in the last 3 minutes - so the rhythm was much better. the houston/nc state game was jerky and then just sorta ended suddenly. houston was in a trap defense so nc state couldn't get into any offense for the last 30 seconds of the game. very unusual.
i hear that charlie rose is having surgery. hopefully that guy will stick around for a while longer. there's a shortage of great interviewers and he's near the top of the list for me.
watched a bit of the duke/uconn game today. there's a lot less parity in women's ncaa basketball than there is in men's ncaa basketball. for example, in this year's tourney the lower seeded team won:
14 out of 15 in the cleveland bracket.
12 out of 15 in the albuquerque bracket.
14 out of 15 in the bridgeport bracket.
12 out of 15 in the san antonio bracket.
compare that to the men's bracket...i'll just look at the atlanta bracket (i picked it randomly, but if you really care you can compare all the brackets) 10 out of 15 (67%) lower seeds won in that bracket...so, 8 underdogs won in the entire women's tournament so far vs. 5 in just one fourth of the regional brackets in the men's tourney. further, only one underdog won more than one game in the women's tourney and 3 of the final 4 are number one seeds. in the men's tourney there are 0 number one seeds in the final four and there are several examples of underdogs winning more than one game. i think that the ncaa tourney has benefitted from guys like kobe, amare, lebron, garnett, etc. going straight to the nba. typically these guys would go straight to a top tier team - these days that would likely be unc, uconn, duke, or kentucky - instead they go to the nba and the other teams are forced to fight over a talent pool that is more level. that said, there are still going to be great players in college - morrison, redick, ray, powe, etc. are all talented and fun to watch.
been kinda depressed lately. i called the carpenter guy on monday and told him i'd have to leave at the end of may, but would still very much like the job. he said he'd get back to me and he hasn't. i'll call tomorrow to follow up, but i doubt that he'll still want me. i don't foresee liking the census job very much and the hours will suck even if i do so i'm not looking forward to it. i'm pretty broke so i have to work so i can save money for the next couple months. i wish things were more simple.
meryl's getting knee surgery on friday.
stephen colbert properly points out the connection between jesus and our celebration of easter with an egg hunt: jesus died for us, just as eggs have been dyed for us.
florida looked pretty good today; they're a more balanced team than i previously thought. i knew about noah's athleticism and good footwork, but i didn't know that their entire team was pretty solid. villanova's weak interior was definitely exposed. i'm extremely happy that uconn went down today. they played like a team that felt they were a team of destiny. and, frankly, i felt that way as well. they looked like the lakers of 2000-2002. during those years someone would always find a way to come up with the big shot when it was needed - horry, kobe, fisher, etc. with about a minute left in regulation uconn was down by 4 or 6 points and i told meryl that it would be interesting to see how they were going to win this one...i didn't say it sarcastically, i said it in a resigned way. sure enough they pushed it into overtime and had a shot to win it. i felt that they should have last two days ago against washington so i'm glad that george mason took them out today.
everyone likes an underdog and george mason is about as big an underdog as they come. they took out three teams that were in the final four last year and that's pretty amazing. they're a lot tougher inside than i thought, but i think that florida will end their run. i'd like to see george mason pull it out though.
i think ucla is going to have a tough time with lsu's interior they have a good low post game and their interior defense is also tough. memphis put ucla to the line 39 times. to me this is a sign of 1) ucla's aggressiveness 2) memphis being out of position defensively. when you're out of position with your feet on defense, whether for a rebound or when playing man to man, you tend to play defense with your hands and that leads to fouls. i'm glad that ucla was more aggressive in getting to the basket against memphis; they're going to have to do the same thing against lsu. hollins is going to have to continue to improve and fey and mata are going to have to contribute some good defensive minutes. offensively i think ucla will miss the injured josh shipp more than ever. i don't know why they haven't mentioned his absence on tv at all. he was generally the number three scorer behind afflalo and farmar.
pretty excited that ucla beat memphis last night. it was a tight game most of the way and it was all about defense. ucla really should have won by 10+ points, but they couldn't make their free throws. then again, memphis didn't make their 3s. then again, you could certainly attribute that to ucla's defense. in their first meeting this season memphis beat ucla 88-80, in this game memphis scored just half that many points (45). my biggest concern about ucla at this point is their interior strength. mata is okay for a few minutes and hollins is good, but i don't know how they'll fare against davis and thomas (i think that's his name) at lsu or uconn's interior. i really credit ben howland with ucla's transformation the last couple years. he's a great coach and i like his positivity - he's always congratulating and complimenting his players and opponents.
got the carpentry job offered to me today. so i have two offers and i'm still not sure what to do about it.
washington blew it tonight. i don't think all that much of uconn, but they have a way of flipping the switch in time to win it. bc put up a good fight against villanova.
keyshawn johnson signed with the panthers which means him and steve smith will be a pretty dangerous tandem. carolina still needs a consistent running threat, though, and i'm not sure that foster can fill that need.
the niners picked up larry allen which means they have at least one very good lineman. right now they're slotted to draft d'brickashaw ferguson, ot from virginia, but i don't know about that after signing allen. i think the defensive lineman from oregon is a more likely choice, but i'd like to see them trade a pick or two so they could get lendale white and the lineman from oregon. if they did something like that then they'd have a starting lineman on each side of the ball and a running back who could likely start opening day as well. it would be a huge impact all around.
the pistons are a good team, but, watching them play the heat the other day, made me realize that they might not have what it takes to make it all the way. flip saunders (their new coach) has done a decent job of upgrading their offense, but i think that it's come at a cost of the overall plan. in the past the pistons played a style of game that sought to limit the number of total posessions in a game. they pressured the ball, rebounded well, and didn't turn the ball over. all these focus points were designed to, essentially, shorten the game. their new style is much more open, and it appears to me that they're not playing with the same level of intensity and focus that they played with under larry brown. this style of game is pretty much the exact opposite of the phoenix suns style.
the ucla/gonzaga game was just amazing. they were down by as much as 17 and looked intimidated. they weren't shooting the ball well, they weren't taking the ball to the hoop and they weren't rebounding cleanly. once afflalo picked up his fourth foul i got really worried; he only played 28 minutes. i consider him our best all around player and he clearly sets the tone on the defensive end. i thought that bozeman did a pretty good job on morrison with afflalo out. hollins had a good game, but has some learning to do. he made up for some of his defensive mistakes with his athleticism. it was 71-62 with 3:27 left in the game and ucla closed out the game with a 11-0 run. it was beautiful. ucla has made a couple big mistakes in this tourney and lived through them. in the last game they choked on their free throws and survived. in this game they came out sluggish and intimidated, scoring only 29 points. in the second half they held gonzaga to 29 and scored 44. hopefully they've learned from their mistakes.
in the last two minutes of the game there were several critical posessions. farmar's runner towards the baseline was a very difficult shot that he made. in the next posession farmar went up against morrison (a clear mismatch, i think morrison is 7 inches taller) and farmar played solid defense and morrison missed one of a few misses in the last couple minutes. another big play was the collison drive to the basket which should have counted and been a three point opportunity, instead the officials waved off the basket and collison missed the front end of a one and one. three potential points turned into zero. it was one of many awful calls (about 75% of which went gonzaga's way) and collison compounded it by missing the free throw. with under 30 seconds, bozeman made a huge steal, farmar picked it up and made a good pass. mbah a moute jumped for the pass (which looked to be intended as an alley oop), gathered himself and laid it up. it was a good decision to not force the lay up while he was in the air. what's even better is that he came back quickly on defense and made a big steal as gonzaga brought it up court. ucla only led once the entire game. the final, desperation play was another nail biter. it clearly brought up memories of grant hill passing to laettner in the 1992 game against kentucky. the big difference was that in that play i belive kentucky elected to NOT guard the inbound pass. here, howland brought in the seven foot hollins to make the inbound pass difficult. that said, the pass was quite good and, despite being double teamed, batista got off a very makeable shot; he bricked it and the game ended.
all in all it was a thrilling game and it brought back memories of other great games that i was emotionally invested in. michigan/unc, kings/lakers, usc/texas being the big ones. this one wasn't as big, but it was the only one that turned out the way i wanted.
gonzaga, meanwhile, has only gone to the elite 8 once in their history and it was when no one knew about them. ever since then they've basically underperformed in the tourney. they played only five ranked teams and lost to three of them. the two wins came against a weak maryland team that didn't even make the tourney and a three point win over michigan state (which lost in the first round of the tourney). despite morrison's disappearance in the last three minutes of this game, i think he'll be a better nba player than redick. he's taller and can create his own shots. both need to learn to play defense, but that's a problem with about 85% of the nba-bound basketball talent.
so far the best team in the tourney, to my eye, has been villanova. i really like noah from florida. i also like BC. they're all in the same region so that's too bad for them. hopefully washington represents for the pac-10 tomorrow. a big part of me would also like to see texas/ucla so i california can get a chance to avenge the rose bowl loss.
i thought that len elmore's color commentary during the ucla/gonzaga game was quite good.
final jeopardy answer: "the last british king not named george, william or edward was named this." only two got to the final and they guessed richard and henry. my wild guess was james and it turned out to be right. i've found that 75% of jeopardy is just having a decent guess or picking up on the cues from the writing of the answer.
i've given thought in the past to alternate rating scales for films. i currently use letter grades, but i've thought about attaching a monetary value to a film - for example, you'd have to pay me $100 to see gigli and i'd pay $100 to see the graduate. for comedies i've thought about an equivalency scale - for example, date movie produces as many laughs as 0 minutes of seinfeld and planes, trains, and automobiles (93 minutes long) produces as many laughs as 100 minutes of seinfeld. both are flawed systems, but i came up with another one today - how long a film stays with you, or gauging a film's effect on the viewer. so, cool hand luke is a film that will stay with me forever so it gets an "eternity" ranking. the good thing about the ranking system is that forgettable films get a ranking equivalent to their running time and films that have a lasting impact get their due. there are lots of films that are nice enough, but don't really stick with you and this ranking system captures that. the problem is that a film like gigli gets the same ranking as cool hand luke since it's so bad that it stays with you for life.
updated movies list.
updated movies list.
got a job with the census. the pros: it pays anywhere from $11-16/hour and it's probably meant to be a temporary job so there won't be any guilt associated with my leaving in late may. the cons: it might not be 40 hours a week, i'd probably get the enumerator ($14.50/hr) job which means i'd have to go door to door asking people census related questions, i don't think i'd like it very much.
i had an interview last week with cd warehouse and it went okay, but i don't think i'm getting that job. had another interview with a custom garage door manufacturer and that went pretty well. if i get a call back i don't know what i'll do. pros: i love carpentry - always have - and it's a good chance to get some experience in the field, the guy seemed pretty cool, it's close to home. cons: it'll probably pay about $8/hr for an entry level job, it's a long term thing so i'd feel bad about leaving in may, the hours might be earlier and it would be tougher to arrange a ride.
further proof of my piss poor memory...and i'm being completely honest with this account: i watched "harlan county, usa" about 10 minutes ago and was going online to see what else the director (barbara kopple) had done. the name sounded familiar, but i wasn't sure if it was because i had heard her name associated with harlan county, usa or some other film. i looked at her filmography and came upon a film called "american dream." looking at the imdb entry i couldn't determine whether or not i had seen it. i saw the user comments which were titled "add this to your list," and decided to see what the user said about the film. if you go to the link then you'll understand why my memory is crap.
was checking out another director (leon gast) because i knew i had heard his name before. turns out that he's done two films that i own - one love and when we were kings. i looked at the imdb description of one love and got another surprise in the user comments section.
updated movies list. finally finished.
sxsw film awards. regrettably, i didn't see most of those. i can tell you that the documentary feature winner was probably the most advertised of the documentaries so that may have been part of why it won. i can also say that the runner-up was decent, but not as good as heart of the game (which was screened at the theater furthest from the epicenter) or summercamp. so, i'm disappointed that i couldn't comment on many of the winners, but i also know that a lot of it is about getting people in the theater rather than making a great film.
film is great. with most of my reviews i lack a clear goal. sometimes i write a review for myself and give all sorts of spoilers which would be obnoxious to the casual reader, but help me when i read my reviews at a later date. sometimes i write reviews in the hopes that someone will read them and be turned onto a film. other times i just write a review because i have to. sometimes i write a review from an academic or compare/contrast point of view. sometimes, and these are usually the longest and most interesting reviews, i use the review process as a springboard for my thoughts on whatever issues the film addresses. in those cases i would categorize the review as life commentary in a filmic context.
updated movies list.
saw a road named after confederate general robert e. lee while driving in south austin the other day. that's sad.
the alamo theaters in austin were called the best theater in america by entertainment weekly and i might have to agree. there are plenty of theaters in la that come close or are better in one way or another (bigger, better interiors/curtains/atmosphere, better staff, better programming, etc.), but there i can't think of any that i've been to that has it all in one place. they have good programming, a good menu of food which they bring to your seat, and they have attitude. examples: they have free midnight showings on wednesdays and thursdays. they have a set of promos which discourage talking during the film - one features (ex-texas governor) ann richards taking a call from the theater manager to help take out a rowdy member of the audience. at the end the subtitle reads "don't talk during the movie or ann richards will take your ass out." they also have a slo-motion film festival, a screening of the world's best commercials, an air guitar contest, an open screen night (people from the audience can bring in anything they want to show), a videoke (karaoke for films) night, and other nifty stuff. their programming doesn't match that of the silent theater, or the nuart, or the nuwilshire in la; and they don't fit as many people as the national, mann's chinese, the dome, the villiage or many others in la; and they don't have the nice interiors of the crest. but, overall, the alamo theaters are pretty sweet.
the whole south park "closet" episode controversy is pretty funny. isaac hayes quit the show citing religious intolerance. meanwhile, the creators, rightly, pointed out his silence when they made fun of catholics, christians, mormons and muslims. scientologists are certifiably crazy and i'm glad south park is around to make fun of everyone equally and, in the process, serve as a reminder that none of this crap is worth getting all fussy about.
i think that the best job for me in the long run would be as a social critic. it's something i'm pretty good at and i know that there are people who actually do it for a living so it's not completely unreasonable.
went to the screening of the new beastie boys film the other day. will review later, but had to mention that they showed up and did a q&a afterwards. i've seen them live before, but it was different than seeing them just a few feet away. we sat in the second row so they were pretty close then, but i also saw them as they entered the theater. i sorta hung around the lobby waiting for them. more than anything i was struck with how small they seemed. they're more thin and short than i had realized. i don't think any of them is over 5'9". mca looked older than usual because he's getting gray and had the beard fully grown. they were funny as always and it was cool to see them. mca waved at meryl after she waved to him. we were looking up at them as they reached the balcony and it was before other people in the theater realized they were there. that was a highlight of the festival. cheesy interviews.
kings have lost the last two in a row. the "in a row" part of the sentence is unnecessary.
writing reviews for the last couple hours, but my reviews are too long lately.
sxsw is over. it's going to take a couple days to review the 23 films and shorts that i've seen in the last few days.
also in the midst of watching the ncaa tourney which is shaping up pretty nicely. ucla is looking as good as they have since 1995, but i worry about their rebounding and bench offensive production.
read the sports illustrated stuff on bonds. it's a lot of reading, but i think it still boiled down to one thing: do you believe that he didn't know what was going on, or do you believe his ex-girlfriend and trainers who said he did. it's possible he had a policy of willful ignorance, but even that is pretty damn pathetic of him. i'd say that i'm about 80% that he did steroids, but i don't like the trend of trying him in the public arena. i really think that, like the michael jackson issue, you have to let a court, or some formal investigation, decide. instead i see a lot of people who are basing their conclusions on hearsay. granted, it's a lot of hearsay, but you could easily make the argument that his girlfriend is doing it for revenge and his trainers are doing it to get themselves off. that said, it appears from the article that their stories line up pretty well. but how much do you trust the guys writing the article - their motives could be questioned as well. mccovey has backed bonds by pulling the race card and that just taints the entire thing even more. it's a damn big mess if you ask me.
one thing that the article looked at was circumstantial evidence - some test taking body fat% and weight and figuring out how likely it is that a person is taking steroids. apparently bonds's score was something like 27 and anything over 25 is considered suspect. the test sounds suspect to me. they also looked at his sharp incline in homeruns per at bat from 98-present which is more compelling. they also looked at pictures of him in the 90s compared to now which may or may not mean anything. here's some circumstantial evidence for you though - he has 9 at bats (hardly enough for statisical analysis, but...) so far in spring training (hardly the real thing, but...) and he has three homers and 7 total hits. that's a .777 average. we have to assume he isn't doing roids anymore...if he were, under this scrutiny, then he'd be dumber than anything thought possible (that said, see einstein quote above)...yet he's still playing extremely well. what happens if he hits 50 homers this year? is it safe to assume he isn't doping? like i said, i think he'd be an extraordinary idiot if he were and if we assume that then a good year from him might convince some people of his legitimacy. who knows.
updated movies list.
it's very late. wrote a bunch of reviews, but still have a few to go.
very few pieces of art affect me the way koyaanisqatsi does. listening to the soundtrack right now.
really would have liked to see the kings/lakers game tonight. not living on the west coast definitely has its drawbacks. before the game artest said that he was going to shut kobe down. i agreed. i predicted one of a few things would happen: he'd shoot under 40%, he'd score under 30 points, or he'd score more than 30, but the lakers would lose. with 3:45 left in the game the kings are up by 14, artest has 28 points (on 10 fewer shot attempts) vs. kobe's 24, and kobe is 10/24 (42%). so, he's doing a bit better than i expected overall. anyway, i'm loving the way the kings are playing these days; i just wish i could watch the games.
game just ended. kobe made two threes in the last 1:30 to increase his shooting percentage to 43% and his point total to 30. i'd still say artest shut him down. the game was over by the time kobe score 8, or more, of his points so they're trash points, really.
off to see my third midnight screening in three days.
was reading over my film reviews from 2004 (my best year in quantity and quality) and it reminded me just how much went into that year. there were very few days when i missed a movie and there were very few reviews that were less than a few sentences long. it was a thoughtful time. the more i watch, the more i review and the better the reviews get. not to be conceited, but i love some of my reviews. a lot of the stuff i have completely forgotten, and that makes it all the more interesting to read them. who's afraid of virginia woolf has a good review, heat has a great review, there are plenty others. i need to get back to that form.
have an interview for a cd place today.
watching all these movies is starting to take a toll. it's more the energy involved with travelling, finding parking and waiting in line than anything else. you have to get there 30 minutes early to have a good chance of getting in and the theaters are as much as 15 miles apart. it just adds a lot of overhead to the process which makes watching 2-4 films a day somewhat difficult. there are a couple films i might watch at 11am today, but i might choose to write reviews and rest instead.
ucla looked very solid against cal the other day. i saw them play live when cal beat them, but they were depleated by injury and still hadn't found themselves. i think they're a solid team overall.
the kings beat a good dallas team 85-80 last night. they're getting better.
first day of the sxsw (south by southwest) film festival began today. i got a film pass for $65 which allows me to watch as many movies in the next 9 days as i can. i'm planning on watching about 25 movies, plus some short films. hopefully i'll stay on top of things and update regularly.
another big day for gerry mcnamara: "McNamara hit another big 3-pointer to get the Orange (22-11) within one with 52 seconds left, assisted on Eric Devendorf's go-ahead basket and caused a turnover with 1.5 seconds left in a 58-57 victory over No. 23 Georgetown in the semifinals Friday night."
on 3/1/06 i referenced something about coach k, but the link was invalid here is the proper link. i'm still adjusting to the notepad as html editor b.s.
updated movies list. big update today - seven movies, which includes two films from the sxsw film festival.
just saw the uconn/syracuse game. great game. mcnamara had a good game (17 pts, 13 assists, 5 rebounds) and hit another huge shot. uconn can really make you pay for your mistakes. and syracuse is stronger inside than i thought. they had some big blocks in the final minutes. mcnamara is good, but i don't think his skills will be enough to get him by in the nba. he's a solid, smart player, but i think he'll likely be a role player like steve kerr or damon jones. he's not very athletic and he's on the small side. he's not as quick or strong as mike bibby, much less a guy like wade or iverson. i hope he does well because i like guys who play smart ball and shoot well, he just needs to work on strength and quickness.
pretty good sized storm came and went in about 30 minutes last night. that sort of thing is pretty typical around here, from what i hear.
updated movies list.
been pretty good about watching movies lately. i guess it's easy when you don't have a job.
chappelle's "black white supremacist" skit is probably my favorite and certainly one of his most well-conceived. from a social perspective it's absolutely razor sharp. for those who don't know...it's about an old blind black man (played by chappelle) who is a leading white supremacist. he doesn't know he's black and his racist friends don't tell him because "he's too important to the cause." it works so well on so many levels. first, it's one of his more funny skits because of the idea and the execution. second, it works as a commentary on the stupidity of the racist ideology. you have a man who is so blinded by his hate that he eventually ends up hating himself and his wife (because she is "a nigger lover"). at the same time you have his racist friends who are, oddly, racist enough to put up with one black guy if he helps their cause. another element in the sketch is the scene wherein chappelle is being driven to a klan meeting and a few white guys roll up in a convertible blasting hip-hop. chappelle berates them and calls them "niggers" because he assumes as much from hearing the music. the white guys, ironically, love this and see it as an accomplishment. the whole skit just works as a brilliant commentary on the many facets of race relations so well.
speaking of which...crash was a poor choice as best picture. i watched brokeback mountain last night and felt that it would have been a better choice. that said, i still think munich was the best picture of the five nominees. i also think that jeff daniels should have received a best actor nomination instead of heath ledger. i also think it's lame that gyllenhaal was able to be nominated for the best supporting actor category. i don't mind a beatrice straight situation...she won a best supporting actress award in 1976 for four minutes of screen time in network. but i do mind a guy who appears in a film for more than an hour and gets a "supporting" nomination. that's bullshit. but anyway, crash was one of the worst choices for best picture in the last 15 years. others include: chicago, shakespeare in love, and titanic.
i think that bush still gets off easy sometimes because of lowered expectations. people just expect it and think of him as such a dumbass that when the economy doesn't tank or only a few hundred people die as a result of his negligence, he looks relatively good. i think that the reality of his presidency is catching up with him a little, but not as much, or as quickly, as it should.
my only problem with artest is that his shot isn't quite as consistent as possible.
miami is a good team, but it takes 35 points from shaq on his birthday or 40 points by wade for them to win competitive games.
d. willis gave up five runs in under 3 innings yesterday. not too impressed by the us pitching yesterday. the next game should be fine since clemens is starting.
south park is great. like chappelle's "black white supremacist" skit, they often cut into the inconsistency, irony and sheer stupidity of our culture. saw an episode last night which did this quite well. mr. garrison (the gay teacher) feels that he is a woman trapped in a man's body so he goes to a doctor to get a sex change operation. meanwhile, kyle tries out for the basketball team, but finds himself unable to compete with athletes who are much bigger and stronger than he. the coach essentially tells him that jewish kids can't play basketball and to come back when he's tall and black. if you know south park you know this is done humorously, though it may not translate in my recollection. kyle goes to the doctor and asks him about the operation he performed for mr. garrison. kyle reasons that if the doctor can do an operation for a man who feels like he's a woman trapped in a man's body then he should be able to do an operation for kyle who feels like a tall black man trapped in a little jewish boy's body. the doctor agrees and performs the operation. later, he performs an operation on kyle's father who feels like a dolphin trapped in a man's body. i love that south park takes an issue like this cuts to its warped core and then takes it a step too far. it functions as great commentary and humor.
updated movies list.
the most tragic loss of the week isn't the early death of kirby puckett, it's the loss of Malian bluesman Ali Farka Toure. great artist who released two albums last year (one being a double disc reissue of red/green).
kings are looking dangerous these days. they beat new jersey at home today by 25. nj is leading their division with a 32-27 record and didn't have any injuries for today's game. martin scored only 7 points and the kings shot under 50% so it wasn't like they had an amazing game. artest and wells had three steals each. looking good.
i've always wondered what people say about me while i'm not around. i also wonder what people will say about me when i'm gone. i guess everyone wonders those things.
been watching a lot of the nfl combine workouts lately. not sure why. it's sorta interesting, but most of the big names don't bother (understandably). haven't been wowed by anyone.
took a test today to be a census worker. i think i did well, but i'm not sure if i'd want the job, despite the high pay.
i like matt dillon, but his performance in crash was inferior to his performances in: there's something about mary, drugstore cowboy and my bodyguard.
during one of the montage sequences in the oscars they showed the clip in e.t with the kids flying over the cop cars on their bikes. sadly, they chose the censored version over the original one(both are available on the dvd release). the censored version shows the cops holding walkie talkies instead of rifles. pathetic.
also noticed that when they showed robert wise (who died the same day as guy green) during the "we'll miss these people" montage, they labeled him a director. i would have credited him as an editor/director since he edited films like: the magnificent ambersons, the devil and daniel webster and citizen kane.
andy serkis may one day be seen as a great innovator. he's the guy who did the movements for king kong and gollum in the lotr trilogy. this kind of acting is only going to get more popular as the technology becomes cheaper. people don't seem to have any objections either.
seinfeld is about as close as i get to having a bible. it's a cultural text to which i turn when i have questions about life and i reference it on a daily basis.
here's my review for crash:
Crash - short
cuts and magnolia-esque in its storytelling, cast-type, and ending, but
nowhere near the tour-de-force that magnolia is. it begins just after a
car crash and this, along with mark isham's (who also did short cuts) ethereal
score, sets the dream-like tone for the rest of the picture; to view the
film as a realistic set of events would mean a less enjoyable experience.
the film ends with another car crash as the camera tracks along the street
and eventually ascends to give larger meaning to the picture. it's certainly
an ambitious film, but one that falls short several times.
matt dillion and don cheadle were stand-outs in the packed cast, but
matt dillion's character was one of the least well-drawn in the film. it
was either too easy to hate him or too easy to forgive him. either way
it came off as simple, lazy or cliché. already the film is in imdb.com's
top #250 (though i'm sure it won't last) and this is testament to the ease
with which some people are manipulated. clearly this film lacks subtlety
from time to time, and yet people were sucked in. all this isn't to say
that the picture was without redeeming qualities, it's just that the picture
is too neat and when dealing with a subject matter as unsavory, complex
and faceted as racism, neat shouldn't be the desired effect. on the positive
side were some good performances, a good, complementary score and some
good dialogue. paul haggis also wrote million dollar baby. C+.
i haven't seen brokeback mountain so i can't really comment on that, but in general the films that were nominated seem like pictures which had good or ambitious ideas/themes, but fell short on execution. and, frankly, i think i'd rather see a well executed film about a trite or frivolous topic than a poorly executed film about something topical.
it was very sad to hear jon stewart point out that triple six mafia have one oscar and martin scorsese has zero. the academy can be full of shit sometimes. that said, i was actually hoping they would win. i thought it was a good song and it fit well with the film.
heard a story on npr today about gay men who take an anti-hiv drug called T (which is short for something that i can't remember) in order to prevent aids. npr story here. this sort of thing is quite troubling to me.
1. some of them take the drug so that they can have unprotected sex and (they think) avoid getting hiv. 2. a side effect of this behavior might be a strain of hiv that is resistant to the drug. the interviewees mulled over the various potential effects of this behavior: the increase of a drug-resistant strain, the increase of unprotected sex because of the perception that the drug protects them, the potential proliferation of the disease in general as a result, etc. to me the whole thing is completely ridiculous. i can't understand why it's so hard to use a condom or avoid the risk altogether. we're talking about your life and the lives of others. if your negligent behavior leads to a drug-resistant strain that subsequently kills more people more quickly then that's a problem. one doctor saw it as a choice between allowing his patients (who he described as very sophisticated, i'd contend that they're very sophomoric) to have unprotected sex and get hiv or prescribing them the drug with the hope that it'll stem the spread of the virus and protect his patients in the process. it seems to be an irresponsible way to practice medicine.
home prices in austin are often under six figures. this place is cheap. i want a house.
not working as a painter anymore. got let go yesterday. it's sort of a long story, but the essence of it is that i don't work fast enough. i work hard and he liked the work i did, but i just didn't do it quickly enough. with painting i've always worked at my own pace. jon, vern and i never really had to bust ass to get a job done and the jobs i've done since then for my grandmother, my mom and my uncle haven't had a strict time schedule. if i feel like getting into it i may document the full story later, but it's all pretty unclear and a lot of it is based upon suspicions and assumptions. one thing about it that really made me mad is that he always said i was doing a good job when he stopped by. on fridays, when he gave me my check, he'd say good job and that would be that. so i definitely feel a little slighted and kinda bad about myself. now it's back to the awful task of finding a new job.
was reading some updates from april of 2000 and it reminded me of the roommate debate we were going through at the time. i really don't remember what happened, but i remember that jon, monique, vern and i were supposed to live together but something didn't work out. my memory is, apparently, quite bad because i wrote about it a couple times so it was obviously on my mind enough to remember.
kings won again last night. they're playing well. bonzi wells played his first game after missing 10 (or so).
need to review some movies, including the belated review of match point.
updated movies list.
looking forward to the south by southwest festival. plenty of great music shows will be here. so far these are the must sees: immortal technique/jedi mind tricks, jean grae/talib kweli, and blackalicious/mr. lif. others of interest to me: eagles of death metal, k-os, gomez, atmosphere/brother ali/soul position, why?, bettye lavette/black heart procession/archie bronson outfit/arctic monkeys, blockhead, brian jonestown massacre, self-scientific/dj muggs/supernatural/ visionaries, lady sovereign and more. then i have a pass to see as many movies as i can during those 10 days. it's going to be a busy time.
"hello, i love you" by the doors should be sampled. it's got a great riff.
kings are 9-6 with artest after a win tonight. artest held lebron to 7 for 21 tonight. they held the cavs to exactly 90.
team USA isn't going to extend an invitation to iverson. i think that's a big mistake. in selecting my team i struggled with my choice to leave him off the roster. i think my major reason for leaving him off is that i think he's a little too stuck in his role as the primary shooter. in selecting my team i wanted guys who would be comfortable in running a set offense and adapting to the coach's style. iverson is a great player and i've always been a fan of his game, but i went with wade instead. he can break down defenses pretty well, has a solid shot, isn't as good defensively, but appears a little more coachable at this point.
speaking of team usa...a while back i said that they should just allow coach k (of duke) to choose the team himself. they essentially took my advice on that one. he's the coach of team usa and coangelo is the team director. related story. "He picked Duke's Mike Krzyzewski to coach the team that he said will not be a collection of superstars, but rather a true national team complete with role players. Colangelo is requiring a three-year commitment from the players." it looks like their roster is 22 players long and mine was only 12 players long. if i had one more space i'd pick iverson. after that i'd pick up a big man who can play defense and rebound. mourning comes to mind for a few solid minutes. offensively he's a liability and he can't play many minutes, but he's hungry, a good citizen and a great, prototypical center.