Saturday, June 30, 2007

Cane Sugar Dr. Pepper!!


So a huge "shout out" goes to Leah, a friend from work, who managed to score a few cases of this delicious brew all because of her go get'em attitude. I tried to go to Safeway and tell the manager to get more of this, but he had no clue what I was talking about. It turns out, after a thorough Internet investigation, that Dr. Pepper Corporate decided to make a test run on a version of Dr. Pepper made with cane sugar instead of high fructose corn syrup.

Since most of you know that I'm a freak who can't ingest HFCS, this seemed to be my ticket to great tasting sodas again. Sadly, the test run on this product seemed to have a short lifespan, since I've not seen it anywhere for around a month now. It has only been spotted at Safeway and a few WalMarts. I also found out that you can mail order this same type of drink from Dublin Dr. Pepper. It's kinda expensive, but at least I know where I can get some more if need be. All this means is that I will have to treat this stuff like gold, reserving it only for special occasions unless corporate decides to mass produce it. It tastes really really good though, and Mr. Tummy is a fan!

Holla if you see any of this upon your travels, I'd be very interested.

Thursday, June 28, 2007

Indigènes - Days of Glory (French War Drama 2006)

Oh French films...you know they should just stick with odd dramas like Amalie. I don't think French cinema has enough experience to go for war dramas or anything else for that matter. This was a no-name WWII war film that had won a few awards including an Oscar nomination. I disagree with the suggestion that this movie was worth any type of vote.

The story followed around a group of Islamic recruits from Northern Africa during the end of WWII. The whole premise of the movie was related to the unfair treatment that minorities in the French army experienced during and after the war. It's kinda like Glory in the way that Blacks were fighting for the Union while they were totally dogged upon by their white, regimented counterparts. It's a pretty direct, cookie-cutter story of discrimination.

Even though the intention was positive, the delivery of this film's message was lacking quite a bit. The characters were all just blah; none of them were interesting or unique enough to be related to. The flow of the film was slow, but in a boring way, not a developing way. Try harder next time.
Rating - D

Monday, June 25, 2007

Miss Potter (Drama 2006)

Geez, what a short movie; I think I cleared it in a little over 30 minutes. Well the film is what you would expect from a pseudo-biography of a children's book writer. Lighthearted, simple, and direct would be accurate and descriptive terms.

Unfortunately, the movie was not long enough to have any real character or plot development, as with most other films that are meant for a younger audience. I made that mistake once with Stuart Little. This film was fairly discreet, as I can't remember it ever being released to the theaters. Hopefully it wasn't because you can't really expect 'Plain Jane' films like these to compete against crazy blockbusters with their stunning graphics and all. Story can change all of that, but this one was much too simple.

Film schools should show this movie as an example of what is average. It wasn't bad, but it wasn't good either. Changing any part of it would be odd, so leaving it be as just an appetizer is what it's meant for.
Rating - C

Sunday, June 24, 2007

Music and Lyrics (Romantic Comedy 2007)

Even with that hooker scandal from a few years back, Hugh Grant's acting skills have not diminished at the same rate his decision-making skills have. He pretty much plays the same character in all of his films, so he's kinda like Denzel in that arena.

This movie was both predictable and enjoyable. Maybe it's because I'm a fan of the 80s or because the dynamic between Hugh Grant and Drew Barrymore was convincing, but whichever way you look at it, this was an entertaining film that made me laugh throughout most of it. I don't really like Drew Barrymore as an actor though. She is also another actor that plays the same character in everything she's in, but the most unconvincing scenes she tries to pull off are the crying ones. I find all of her emoting scenes very annoying, like in Never Been Kissed, The Wedding Singer, and now this one. She should really try to stop accepting parts that require that type of drama because it just doesn't work.

But besides those minor details, this was a fun little movie that required very little thinking. It's not memorable, but it's also not disappointing, so that has to count for something.
Rating - B

Saturday, June 23, 2007

Ghost Rider (Action 2007)

The first thing I thought of while watching this movie was "Humm, this is just as bad as Daredevil." And guess what? The writer/director of this piece of shit was involved in both of those, and he even threw in Elektra for free! Yes, we can all see that Mark Steven Johnson has to know people in the industry because he sure as hell didn't get to this place in his career through hard work and talent.

Yeah...this movie sucked pretty bad; they didn't even try to put together a story. This was just like a paper in college where you wrote it drunk, the night before, without any prior planning.

I wonder how much time, money, and energy could have been saved by not making this film. This is a complete waste of space in the IMDB database. Thank God for both 2x and 4x-speed DVD-watching.
Rating - F

Friday, June 22, 2007

Back in Line

If anyone cares to know, the grass is indeed not greener on the other side. It's more expensive, slower, and has a bunch-o-quirks that you totally have to experience for yourself. I was going to go on this huge review of the MacBook Pro, but I'm not in the mood to write about all the drama. Lets just say that it's not for me, but I can see why a lot of peeps would just love this thing to death. I haven't calculated how much money I have lost in this pricey experiment of mine, but I'm sure it's not a low amount. I was able to sell it in 1 day on Craigslist, so I'll just count my blessings and not look back. More reviews to come this weekend.

Wednesday, June 20, 2007

Oh the Shame!

I'm downright embarrassed to be in IT right now. I totally went against all of my years of experience and nuked my Mac without verifying that all of the file transfers back to a Windows machine were A-ok. Evidently they were not. I did have a backup, but that dated back from March. Even though I'm not at zero, I still can't fathom how many MP3s are lost to time. The odd thing was that my DVD ISOs and JPG pictures all were perfect transfers. My main data directory was hosed, all of my songs were hosed, and my main password safe was hosed. Man this sucks...don't trust Apple-to-PC networking because something is definitely fishy with it.

Sunday, June 17, 2007

The Good Shepherd (Drama 2006)

Does anyone else have a problem spelling the word "shepherd"? I didn't know I did until I couldn't, for the life of me, spell it right. It's going to be just like the word "probably"...I seem to always misspell that one too. Anyway though, wow, what a long-ass movie. If you're wanting to see a "light" film, this certainly would not be it. Ever since going to this, Mac I've been discovering little things that I just can't seem to pull off with the new system: one being that both the DVD player and VLC cannot play a movie with the audio and subtitles going at 2x speed. WTF. So yeah, this 3 hour extravaganza was literally 3 hours of my life sitting in front of this computer. Looking at the large scheme of things, in reference to time, 6 hours screwing off in front of a computer is quite normal; but yeah, considering that I could've cleared this in 1.5 hours makes me a little bit annoyed...

This film was a very well done piece of artistry; I never knew Robert DiNero had any directing talent, but this movie shows what he's actually capable of. The film has a slow plot, but all of it was good. There was a lot of character development as well as having a whole spy/clandestine feel to it. This movie actually convinces you "not" to join the spooks and any government agency for that matter. Matt Damon did a great job representing a young, smart counterintelligence officer who quickly moves up the ranks but ends up being a very empty, soulless person. The rest of the actors and characters helped the plot along, but none of them actually contributed much, including Angelina Jolie. This whole movie seemed to be Matt Damon's gig.

So yeah, that pretty much sums it up. Just realize that the plot is very thick, but not complicated like Syriana. It has a lot of detail and is very long, as you follow the main character from college, through WWII, to the height of the cold war and the Cuban Missile Crisis. I know some people would be bored out of their minds because there isn't a lot of action, but for those who want a complete, detailed story and have 3 hours to blow, I'd highly recommend it.
Rating - A

Saturday, June 16, 2007

Turncoat

So the reason there have been no updates for a while is becasue I crossed over to the dark side a week or so ago and have been busily exploring this new frontier. In due time, I will post a review on my new purchase as well as many accessories that I've come across. Included in this will be a full justification analysis that will answer the majority of the "why" questions from a technology and IT perspective.

There will be one movie review posted tonight becasue I'm scheduled to watch one, so yes, just hang in there. Besides that I'm just trying to clear out all of the studying needed for round 2 of the GMATs so I can continue with my lazy life of movies, games, and reviews.

Sunday, June 10, 2007

Copying Beethoven (Drama 2006)

Considering that I hate classical music, I wonder why I chose to pick up this movie. Perhaps it was because Ed Harris and Diane Kruger were in it. Kruger is hot while Ed Harris was General Hummel (The Rock). Unfortunately though, I didn't pay close enough attention to what the story was going to be about until it was too late.

This movie sucked; there's no way around it. You woulda thought that Ed Harris could have tried to pull a rabbit out of his hat, but alas no, the rabbit probably died from boredom. The plot was so damn "putt putt" that I could have actually fallen asleep to it if I had earphones on. The side characters were barely a part of the film, illustrated by the complete lack of development. Who does that? Who writes a story with only 2 real characters? Funny because now that I think of it, Closer only had 4 actors and they seemed to have no problems producing a pretty good flick. This film did none of that; it merely bolstered the need for words like "shit" to continue to exist in the English dictionary.

This movie was not based on any historical accounts so there was nothing to be educated about. The acting was blah, although they did try very hard to integrate in some dramatic scenes for Miss Kruger. The hardest part probably went to the costume department in the making of all of the early 19th century clothing. If you're even remotely interested in watching this, just stop and think really hard that you only have one life to live. Do you really want to spend it on this?
Rating - D

Sunday, June 03, 2007

Knocked Up (Comedy 2006)

The 40 Year Old Virgin used to have the crown but I'm happy to say that we now have a new reigning champ for comedy. No joke at all people, this was one hella funny movie and I was laughing throughout most of it. It was realistic, crude, vile at times, and the word "fuck" was used quite generously.

While the story was pretty good, the icing on the cake were the verbal fights and the interpersonal dialogue because both were unusually realistic. Judd Apatow, writer and director, probably asked his friends how they would respond in certain situations, and he merely wrote down their responses verbatim; because seriously, some of the comebacks were so damn good and none of them pulled any punches at all.

There were probably 3 parts which were a little out of place just because the flow of the film seemed to be on hiatus during those scenes, but 97% of the rest of the movie kicked ass and was right on the ball in terms of being entertaining. I can't imagine anyone not enjoying this movie, unless of course you're a religious freak that lives in a box.
Rating - A