Wednesday, May 25, 2005

Michel Gondry

I've been watching a great DVD tonight. Its a compilation of the work of director Michel Gondry. He directed Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind, but before that he directed some incredible videos for the Rolling Stones, Bjork, Daft Punk, Chemical Brothers, and Foo Fighters. The DVD has about 20 of his music videos, some of his short films, and a couple ads he directed (including a great Levi's ad that won an award at Cannes!). The videos can be accessed individually or from the documentary that includes interviews with Gondry and people/bands he's worked with. Its a double sided disc with over 400 minutes of content. The DVD is part of the Director's Series that also has one on the work of Spike Jonze that I'm looking forward to getting, too.

Wednesday, May 18, 2005

Trailer Park Boys

Hilarious!! I'm a little late finding out about it (its in it's 5th season), but Trailer Park Boys is the best television show out of Canada since Kid's in the Hall! I can't stop watching it. It just doesn't get any better than Ricky, Julian and Bubbles!

There's so much great Canadian television available on DVD now (at Amazon): Trailer Park Boys, Kids in the Hall, and of course, the Red Green Show.

Tuesday, May 10, 2005

Crash

I went to see the movie Crash tonight. It developed slowly and 15 minutes in I was bracing myself for real disappointment, but then it started to pick up. The character development during the first act takes awhile and does drag a little, but its necessary given the number of integral characters. Once it does start moving it is a really emotional movie...I heard several gasps and quite a few sniffles in the theater.

By the way, the movie does start and end with the same car crash, but it is not about car crashes. That was Cronenberg's 1996 movie of the same name.

The easiest way to describe Crash is to say that it is about race, but that's too simple. It is a Los Angeles movie that combines the racial issues of a movie like Grand Canyon with the interconnectedness of Magnolia, two other LA movies. Much like I said in my Bobby Long entry about New Orleans, Los Angeles is a character in this film. It also shares with Magnolia, a dark and brooding sense of despair. It is ultimately about redemption; especially if you believe its never too late to be redeemed.

Crash is a good movie, but not a great movie. It will make you think and it will put you on the edge of your seat at times in the process. My rating: 7 of 10.

Sunday, May 08, 2005

Online hunting

Seriously! Hunting over the Internet from your computer! Firing a gun with the click of your mouse! When I read about it I thought, 'only a couple guys from Texas could come up with something like Live-Shot.' I was right, "the shooting range is an outdoor facility located on a secluded ranch in the Texas hill country." Actually the ability to hunt a variety of animals won't be available until they finish building the blind, but for now, from your computer, you can "control a pan/tilt/zoom camera...to fire 10 (ten) .22 caliber rounds at paper and silhouette targets. You may also have a DVD recording and/or the paper target from the session shipped as an option."

Equally bizarre, though, is the fact that California is already preparing an emergency regulation to ban on-line hunting in response to the web site.

Saturday, May 07, 2005

Enron documentary

I went to see the new documentary on Enron tonight. It's called Enron: The Smartest Guys in the Room [imdb]. Its an entertaining 110 minute documentary produced by Mark Cuban's HDnet Films. I didn't find myself getting bored and the attempts at political potshots were kept fairly brief. The film kept good focus on the main players, the facts and the fallout of the Enron debacle. The coverage of Enron's role in California's energy crisis was the most interesting; I hadn't realized just how directly Enron's actions resulted in the famous rolling blackouts in Cali. I don't know if its worth a trip to the theater, but I'd definitely recommend it as a rental.

The film is based on the book of the same name. It's showing at "Magnolia at the The Modern" this weekend and next.

Thursday, May 05, 2005

Kincaid's Hamburgers now in Southlake!

The most famous hamburgers in Fort Worth (and arguably all of Texas) are now being served in Southlake, too! Frankly it just doesn't seem right to me to try and duplicate Kincaid's but what's done is done. I've checked it out and the burgers taste the same. The decor is an excellent reproduction of the original (including the inflatables hanging from the ceiling), but it just looks too new. And there's not enough of the stand-up counters. It's located at the intersection of Kimball & Southlake (just off 114). I'll continue to eat at the original.

Monday, May 02, 2005

A New Orleans movie

A Love Song for Bobby Long [imdb] is a New Orleans movie... the city should be listed as a member of the cast. I don't know what it is about New Orleans in movies, but there's no mistaking it when you see it (eg. Down by Law). The other cast members do a fine job, too, namely Scarlett Johansson (Lost in Translation) and John Travolta. The alcoholic adventures of John Travolta's character and his roommate Lawson are on the order of Leaving Las Vegas! I enjoyed it and, of course, it made me crave a Nawlins weekend. Nice soundtrack, too. My rating: 7 of 10