Monday, April 30, 2007

A great review of Next.

While the New York Post is not the pinnacle of high art and literature it is a completely awesome paper for the news that matters: sports, murders, fires, celeb filth, and mean spirited movie reviews. Lou Lumenick's review of Next is awesome. Personally I won't see this movie if I have anything to say about it. If forced to endure it by Libyan terrorists or the NVA or family members then I guess I would have to watch it.

Friday, April 27, 2007

My new PlayStation 3 - Week 1

Holy damn sh*t! I have played pretty much every system ever released, last-gen, current-gen, 1st, 2nd, 3rd, 4th-gen. And I can say, without question, that there has never been a piece of home entertainment equipment like the PS3, gaming or not, and it will definitely drastically change the market and your living room forever.

Gaming aside, the PS3 replaces nearly every piece of equipment in your entertainment center and does it with style and power. Your photos, video files, music, and internet all at your finger tips in stunning high definition. Granted some of the PS3's functionality needs some work, such as filing systems, format issues, the inability to create subfolders, etc. but these will all come soon through frimware updates. This PS3 instantly becomes a part of your home entertainment life with ease and pinache.

Now onto the games. Of course the graphics on the PS3 are both breath-taking and beauftiful. No words I can type can truly convey this point. The real treat with the games I've played to this point is not the graphics but the enthralling gameplay. I was afraid that the focus on knock-out graphics would equate to sub-par game experiences. I couldn't have been more wrong. On more than one ocassion in the last five days I've had real human spectators cheering me or other players on enthusiastically from seats in my living room. Grown men with no interest in video games, yelling and getting involved without touching a paddle. Every game I've played has evoked that white-knuckle adrenaline rush feeling that a great game should. Admittedly, there are some bad games available for the PS3 and even some of the good ones have apparent bugs, but for first wave releases, overall these are very acceptable in-game flaws.

The machine itself is a marvel and should be budgetted for purchase within the next year by anyone claiming to be a technophile. My favorite part is the online PlaystationStore. Worrying about content? Well don't, right out of the box you have free access to at least 15 free playable demos via PS Store download. And when I say demo I don't mean some bullcrap 4:3 aspect ration low-end rendered graphics version of the real game, I mean balls-to-the-wall 1080p fully rendered and operable playable levels of the release version of the title. Aside from demos, the PS Store gives you access to free HD movie trailers, HD BluRay trailers, HD promos for upcoming games, and best of all fully downloadable original HD games for purchase as well as PS1 and PS2 classics. The variety of available fully functional games on the PS Store range from an HD rendered full version of Tekken: Dark Resurrection to an original game for children called Super Rub-a-Dub where you play a rubber duck in a tub trying to save her kids from a wind up plastic shark. My point is there is alot to choose from. The downloads range in price from $4.99 to $19.99 although some of these games are free.

Overall, I am extremely impressed by the PS3 so far and it seems as though the sky's the limit as far as capabilities go. Oh yeah, and keep in mind, I feel this way and I haven't even put a BluRay movie in it yet.

The Boondocks win a Peabody!

I'm a huge fan of The Boondocks - both the comic and the show. Sure there are people out there who get offended by the show and it's potentially controversial views but those people can shut up.

I read today that The Boondocks won a Peabody Award. They had this to say:

"Return of the King," an especially provocative installment of the prickly animated series "Boondocks," was the first program televised by Cartoon Network to win a Peabody. The episode imagined a reawakened Martin Luther King`s reaction to contemporary phenomena from gangsta rap to the war on terror."
I say congratulations and cheers to you Aaron McGruder.

Thursday, April 26, 2007

Dead I Well May Be - Andrew McKinty

I had forgotten about this book and how much I enjoyed it. My boss asked if I had read any of Andrew McKinty's books and after a few moments of idiocy - I've been off all day my yin and yang are heading north and south - I realized that I had read Dead I Well May Be.

How is the book? Let's put it this way - it's what The Departed should have been like but couldn't have been pulled off. This is one of those ass-kicking pot-boilers: an Irish lad comes to the States and gets a job as muscle with the local Mick mob. Things go sideways, all sorts of bad-ass shit happens, and there's a good old gun battle revenge climax. Oh yeah, there's a Mexican prison in there too - trust me it works. On top of everything it's well written. McKinty has that rapid-fire, taut style that I love. Tough Micks doing tough Mick shit. I'm gonna make a run to the bookstore to pick up his other titles this weekend.

Tuesday, April 24, 2007

Most honorable panty shot super happy sparkle fighting!

I'm not sure what Famitsu is selling with this fighting game but I'm intrigued. I like the maid with the eyepatch.

Then there's the game - Pure Cure - pictured above. I feel vaguely dirty and vaguely intrigued - like trying to track down smutty games for the DS Lite. Not that I even have a DS Lite but I've read about them...yeah...

Once I get home I will download Big Shot - which doesn't look dirty just awesome and fun.

And of course there's the game with the chick with the bunny(?).

Monday, April 23, 2007

Who's comin' with me?

I'm going to see Hot Fuzz tomorrow. BC3 is out of town so I don't have my regular accomplice to see it with. Anyone interested give me a call.

Friday, April 20, 2007

A quick note.

Our friend Mark is driving around the country taking pictures of stuff and watching ducks have sex. I put up an RSS feed over there on the right so we can be kept up to date. He's a good guy and has some pretty pictures of the Southern US of A.

"...everyone knows, when you make an assumption, you make an ass out of "u" and "umption"."

1) Vacancy opens today. While I am normally a fan of hellbilly motel nightmare movies I get the feeling that nothing bad is going to happen to Luke Wilson or what's-her-name with the ass. I am interested in seeing it because I really like Frank Whaley and director Nimrod Antal's Kontroll (2005) was a great movie. If you are in the need for something to watch I suggest picking up Kontroll - it's weird and stylish enough to be cool but not enough to be annoying. It's well shot, has cool Hungarian actors, and a kick ass techno score.

2) Looks like there's an animated version of Beowulf coming out with Ray Winstone voicing Beowulf and Crispin Glover voicing Grendel. Directed by Zemeckis, I think this has potential. Should be coming out this year or next. We shall see.

3) Scalped from Variety: "In something of a surprise, the Quentin Tarantino/Robert Rodriguez "double bill" Grindhouse, which was expected to compete for the top Palme d'Or prize, will only be represented by the Tarantino half of the feature, Death Proof, which is being expanded to one hour and 50 minutes." While part of me thinks this is absurd and I'm a bit tired of running around the same issues with Grindhouse in a strange way it makes sense.

Death Proof was the weak link Grindhouse but if extended and given some room to work it could be a good movie. Now if Machete can get made then doubled up with Planet Terror then we're gonna have something truly kick ass.

4) No Country for Old Men is also going to play at Cannes. Josh Brolin & Tommy Lee Jones are starring with Javier Bardem playing the bad guy. It has potential especially if the Coens can keep the wacky humour out of it.

5) I had forgotten about Razorback (1984) - an Aussie horror flick about a massive Razorback boar that kills the living shit out of people. I rented it several years ago - thank you Vulcan Video. It really wasn't a bad movie per se, actually it was pretty entertaining. While I was looking at the comments and jive for Razorback I saw information about other Australian horror movies:

Fair Game (1986) Seems like Australian take on the sexploitation revenge movie. Hillbillies terrorize hot chick - apparently she's John Denver's wife before she married John "Fly yes, land no!" Denver. Hot chick flips out and kills the shit out of hillbillies. I've never seen this particular movie but it has a chick where they tie her to the hood and drive around the Outback. Woo!

Dark Age (1987) is about a monstrous croc. The tagline is "Death is only one bite away." I don't know if this one is worth tracking down.

Not much else in the way of news at this current point in time. Hope you kiddos have a good weekend.

Monday, April 16, 2007

Angry Video Game Nerd & Screw Attack

We were sitting around watching - what? - and watched Angry Video Game Nerd's review of Ghostbusters for the NES. It is one of the funniest things that I have seen in quite sometime. I suggest that you watch it. Now would be a good time. It's not like you're really doing anything anyway. What's the matter? Don't you like to laugh?

The Safety Dance (1982)

The song was playing on Radio Nigel and I decided to Men Without Hats and the Safety Dance. I pretty much didn't learn anything about the song - why it sucks so much or why is it so much fun to make fun of for examples. What I did find was a link to Mike Edmonds' website. He is the dwarf that is in almost everyone of my favorite 80s fantasy movie ( He was in the Safety Dance video. He was not in Men Without Hats - which is cool because Men Without Hats sucked.

Cheers to you Mike Edmonds.

"Is that Freedom Rock? Well, turn it up man!"

Just a couple of updates from the weekend:

1) God of War 2 was short, frustrating, and profanity inducing. Not quite as profanity inducing as SSX Tricky races but still fairly maddening. All in all it was a good game, gorgeous to look at, violent as all get out and there was nudity. Say all you want about GTA or any number of hot title games God of War has had boobies in both titles. I'm not saying that this is a bad thing or a good thing but really it's about time. What are slave girls supposed to wear? Potato sacks? Sweat suits? I think not.

Breasts do not a game make but God of War 2 was a solid game but short. It kind of amuses me that I view any game that takes less than twenty hours to complete short. Sure you can replay the game with all your gear and levelled magic but meh, why? There are a couple of bonus time attack levels that are more painful than fun to play.

The actual game itself is pretty damn good, the story really makes it. There aren't many games out there so straight up grim. Slaughtering heroes of Greek mythology? Neat-o! Mangling/dismembering/all out slaughtering critters? Swell! The game does end on a cliff-hanger but damn is it cool. If you played the first game and enjoyed it then I recommend waiting a few months and picking this up used. If you haven't played the first game then go pick up God of War. Seriously, it's an awesome game.

2) Watched the director's re-cut of Payback on Friday. The DVD came out last week. It was really good. I'll rewatch the theatrical release and then rewatch the remake and come up with a review...maybe...

Upcoming updates:

1) Tomorrow's movie is Pathfinder. Anyone interested drop wither me or Bart a line.

2) I still have yet to watch Unknown (2006) dir. Simon Brand w/ Greg Kinnear, Joe Pantaliano, and some second stringers. Supposed to be some kind of thriller. I'll watch it tonight or send it back to netflix so I can see Invincible. Yes, that Invincible.

Friday, April 13, 2007

I will lose the last of my childhood...

on May 22, 2008. That's when the new Indiana Jones movie comes out. Yep, I will then be officially old and shit. Here's the article from Variety. Guess I'll go have some prune juice and wait for death now.

Manhunt 2 Official site opens.

I am getting pretty geared up for Manhunt 2. The official site is up and running with a new trailer and more goodies coming soon. It's sounding like The Suffering what with the Asylum and what not - fewer demons though.

More news as I find it.

Thursday, April 12, 2007

Stolen from Kotaku's site stolen from...

I know I'm hijacking this from but they are so very big that it won't hurt to remora a little. In any case I know that you fine folks would apprectiate Matthew Kumar's 52 Gaming Similes To Describe Your Relationship. Some of them are really quite funny. I'm putting an RSS for his site because well...he's funny.

Kratos, you so crazy!

After three hours of playing God of War 2 I am actually looking forward to replaying it. As far as a game starting totally awesome I can't think of a game starting this totally wicked hella awesome. Penny Arcade sums it up beautifully as usual. Most games make me wish that I had a massive TV upon which to play but God of War 2 was made to be played on a movie screen. No joke.

If you've played God of War then you pretty much have a handle on the controls but then you start to appreciate the changes - dare I say it improvements in gameplay. Kratos now can use the Blades to grappel into areas which mean you have to keep an extra keen eye open. Part of the reason I want to replay this beast is simply because I know that I have missed areas. The addition of airborne combat levels is a blast. C'mon when isn't ripping the wings off a griffon bitchin'? The story is - at this early stage in the game - is as dark as God of War. The puzzles are a bit more clever and I can see the potential for frustration - we'll see.

This is a game you should take a look at if you want something playable, thrilling, and generally exciting. Hell, it's fun watching other people play just so you can just kick back.

Tuesday, April 10, 2007

Upcoming reviews:

I picked up God of War 2 today - woo payday! - and it's actually a 2 disc set. Apparently the second disc is special features, soundtrack, and assorted goodies. I'm looking forward to playing this, especially after reliving the first one.

Grindhouse review will be pending either this evening - if I get home early enough or tomorrow.

We watched the first disc of Into the West. It's not bad for a made for TV Western miniseries. It has a bumper crop of second tier actors who are - all in all - a good bunch of actors. It's not completely sappy about the Indians or the settlers which makes me happy. I got sick of the noble savage, oh the poor Indians, Dances with Wolves schtick years ago. Watching Into the West makes me wish that someone would do a series about the French & Indian Wars. The West is all great and everything but it may be time to revisit the Colonies.

I'm sure there are other things in the pipe but I can't think of them right now.

Monday, April 09, 2007

Here's an awesome article on an awesome site.

Over at Movie Criticism for the Retarded there's an awesome article about The Transformers. Personally I don't really give a shit about the Transformers. I thought that some of the toys were awesome and still kick ass but as for the cartoon not so much. When I saw some of the trailers I just feel, "Yeah! Kick ass! Robots blowing shit up! America! Fuck yeah!"

Check out the article and the site. Some of it's really funny.

Waiting for Tuesday & assorted weekend update.

Despite the fact that Grindhouse has been getting mixed reviews I am actually getting excited to see it. A good number of people I know have no interest in seeing it because of cast, crew, or directors, or the fact that exploitation movies suck. I'm just gonna go for it - of all the releases that I could nit-pick and be overly critical of it's Grindhouse. Y'know what though? Fuck it, I wanna see some T&A and some violence and just have a good time. I agree with the people who have been saying that this is a movie that begs to be seen at the Alamo Drafthouse but damn that's too expensive a venture. In any case expect reviews from us in a day or two.

This weekend was pretty fun. With temperatures dropping absurdly Saturday was a good day to hide inside and get some serious gaming done. Summoner 2 was a satisfying RPG that yielded a good 30ish hours of gameplay and would have had more if I had crossed every I and dotted every T. If you're in the market for a budget RPG title that has some pretty interesting gameplay I recommend it.

Looks like it's going to be a fairly entertaining week so hopefully there will be some totally hella wicked awesome updates and some better than average posts. Now get back to work.

Saw Jenna polish off God of War. There are some real bastard platform moments to that game. It's one of those things where the amount of profanity, frustration, and straight up 110 proof rage-ohol almost make you want to stop playing the game. Almost but not quite.

There was a cookout yesterday - many thanks to Bart. Yea verily and it was good. In fact Easter at his house was one of the more fun Easters I've had.

Wednesday, April 04, 2007

Talk to Me (2007)

Saw the trailer for Talk to Me last night and can't wait to see it - 07/20/07. It's the story of a DJ in DC in the late 60s. Don Cheadle plays the DJ and I''ve been a fan of his since I saw him in Devil in a Blue Dress. Hell, he's the reason I want to see Reign Over Me. I'm also a big fan of Chiwetel Ejiofor - y'know, the bad guy from Serenity and Children of Men - and I think it'll be good to see him in a non-heavy role. Should be pretty entertaining if the preview is any indicator.

Monday, April 02, 2007

Summoner 2 (2002)

I borrowed this from the fine neighbour folks who said that it was one of their favorites. It's a pretty solid and enjoyable RPG.

As far as I can tell - I'm only about 8 hours into it - the story is good. It's a pretty standard prophecy tale with mumbo-jumbo and the Tree of and the Storm of Evil and the whatever whatever. I find with RPGs I often lose interest in the story even if I love the game. This may be for several reasons:

a) The game has large amounts of "crazy talk/gamer martian". Any readers who are familiar with RPGs are familiar with the, "But we need the Seedling of Light in order to grow the Tree of Remembering in order to gain access to the Temple of Shotput the Mighty and Fearsome in order to restore balance and order to the kingdom of Betamax!" Yeah, write out the plot of a standard RPG on a cardboard sign and stand outside the Greyhound station and you may find people who understand.

b) The main storyline/quest in no way shape or form can compare with the secret missions, hidden monsters, absurd side quests, puzzles, red herrings, and assorted time sinks that RPGs have become. C'mon, what would you rather do - restore order or kick the shit out a gargantuan optional beast with a weapon you master-crafted yourself? That's what I thought.

c) RPG stereotypes. From the scrappy little sister brawler/healer to the sexpot mystic to the gruff yet loveable mechanic/airship captain we've seen it all...mostly. Games like Disgaea, Summoner 2, and Final Fantasy Tactics broke out of those stereotypes and are great games.

Summoner 2 - so far - has a solid range of characters, not particularly ground breaking but a refreshing change of pace. The main character, Maia, is a headstrong queen with a take charge kick ass attitude. What really sets Summoner 2 apart is the voice acting. Most characters have a British or vaguely British accent which really helps. I'm from the school of British accents lending credibility and class to games and movies. Seriously - imagine Theoden, Horse King of Rohan with a stupid American accent. Dr. Who - the Time Lord from Minnesota. Yeah right.

All in all this looks like it's going to be a satisfying long range RPG with loads of secret and side quests - that I love. More to come as I progress.

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