Saturday, January 28, 2012

Dark Rising by Greig Beck (Book 2011)

This was another great write by Greig Beck. The first book by this author was Beneath the Dark Ice which was a damn good read. This one had the same main character so although it was not directly related to the book, it was a continuation of one soldier's adventures.

In comparison to the first, the story in this book concentrated on a scientific anomaly of a black hole as opposed to ancient, lost history which the first book was all about. I believe I liked the first one better, just because of the plot, but the action and general writing were just as good in this book. Read the first; if you like it you should like this one as well.
Rating - High

Saturday, January 21, 2012

The Rift Walker by Susan & Clay Griffith (Vampire Empire, Book 2) (Book 2011)

So this is the second book in the series, continuing after the end of The Grayfriar. Although it wasn't as exciting as the first, the story and characters were still good enough to make it worthwhile. Note that political finagling replaces action sequences in this book, so that may be why is seemed a bit slower. I still wasn't able to put it down after I got a few chapters in so the writing style is still the same and easily readable. Got high hopes for the 3rd book.
Rating - High

Monday, January 16, 2012

Real Steel (Action 2011)

So this movie didn't totally suck but it did suck a good amount. It was a childish movie where when you have adults try to act around a plot like this, it tends to be very fake and lame.

This was a waste of Hugh Jackman's talents. On top of that Dakota Goyo is an ugly kid. He was such a whiny bitch in this film that whenever he said "please" and tried to be all doe-eyed you really wanted to just punch him in the face. Yeah Hollywood likes better looking kid-actors...where did they find this piece of shit?

To sum it up this movie should've had The Rock in it because it was that type of film.
Rating - D

Saturday, January 14, 2012

Moneyball (Sports Drama 2011)

Well there is a reason why I don't watch sport movies all too often and it's because they usually suck and because I don't care for sports. The previews made this movie out too look like something inspirational but it was very boring and wasn't balanced.

I suppose Brad Pitt did an OK job, but Jonah Hill didn't need to act at all. He just needed to stand there with a blank look on his face and memorize some lines. The movie was about how a manager decided to use some sort of new mathematic and economic model to hire, fire, and play players. It was a totally different method that was looked down upon in the beginning but eventually it supposedly changed the game.

Again, boring concept and boring story. All this movie did was show that it would be hard to build a real team with any synergy if players get traded and fired all of the time. Pretty heartless...maybe that is why the sport of baseball sucks.
Rating - D

Friday, January 13, 2012

Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy (Drama 2011)

This was a damn good movie. Very slow like most other spy type of films but yeah very good quality stuff here.

I haven't watched too many movies as slow as this one but it never got boring and it never had too many characters even though it did come close at times. It was about an ex high-up intelligence director who gets canned but then gets re-hired back by the govt to find a mole in the intelligence service back in the cold war days. Kinda plain Jane plot but for some reason I found it very fascinating.

I do think this is because of the writing and acting. All of the actors were very convincing and I mean very. Gary Oldman is quite good. Can't believe he was Dracula aye? I know a lot of people can't stand hella slow dramas but I gotta vote this one up. You have to be in the mood of course.
Rating - A

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

50/50 (Drama 2011)

Hey what do you know, this movie was actually pretty damn good. This was probably the first time I’ve seen Seth Rogan play a character who wasn’t totally over the top. He actually seemed like a real person for once, not just a walking set of funny comments.

The story is about a young guy who has been diagnosed with cancer. Yeah bum story but they did a good job with it. It follows him around as he deals with own internal drama mixed in with various relationships he has with Rogan’s character, his GF, therapist, and parents. It was a nice and simple movie where the characters seemed to have real chemistry for once. Some parts were sad, but it wasn't overly dramatic at all.
Rating - A

Selection Event by Wayne Wightman (Book 2011

So this book was a bucket of suck. I don't like reading anything about religion and the later half of this book was all about getting in little pokes at Christianity and how some of them are hella fanatical and crazy. Although I would agree with the main character and the author, I sure as hell don't want to waste my time reading about it.

The book's description toted it as being a post-apoc survival story, but only around 10% was really about any type of survival. Other other portions were split among one character who was riding motorcycles from the west to east coast with no apparent purpose at all and the other section was written from the point of view of a dog in the story. I found that concept interesting but it didn't seem to play any real role in the story. So if you're looking for a post-apoc book, this is not a good one.
Rating - Low

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

War Horse (Drama 2011)

Man, talk about corny. This movie was so artificial, it was very hard to take it even mildly seriously. So many scenes were setup oh so perfectly to try to get some emotional rise out of you. It was seriously scene after scene after scene.

The main actor played a whiny pussy. He was such an annoying character that you wanted to just watch the horse standing there some more. The film tried to have epic scores cover up all of the fake scenes and the lack of real drama so it was very loud and in your face.

Obviously I didn't like the movie because it didn't feel like one. Many scenes seriously felt like they were created "for" pre-existing music, not the other way around.
Rating - D

Saturday, January 07, 2012

The Sentinel by Jeremy Bishop (Book 2011)

This one was a fun book. It's about a group of whalers and anti-whalers who get stuck up in the North Arctic and accidentally open up a crypt with a group of (undead) Draugar. I've killed enough of these things in Skyrim to know exactly what they are. Fun times. They are kinda undead which makes the subplot more interesting. Doesn't make it scientific or anything but it does change it from an average zombie novel of sorts.

The plot was fast, full of action, and had a pretty strong feminine protagonist. Short read but overall a good book.
Rating - High

The Boy in the Striped Pajamas (Drama 2008)

The movie was just an average one. It was about a little kid whose father was a German upper in control of a concentration camp. This kid befriended another kid inside the camp and that's about it. The whole point of this film hinged on its ending which was kinda nutty but the rest of the movie was blah in terms of the drama itself. The main kid is kinda an idiot though...just saying. I don't think even someone as young as him could be that foolish but who knows.
Rating - C

Tuesday, January 03, 2012

United States of the Dead (White Flag Of The Dead) by Joseph Talluto (Book 2011)

This last book of the series seemed rushed. I think I cleared it in half-a-day of casual reading. Good thing is that the whole story is finished. Bad thing is that it ended much worse than the series first started.

I noticed in this one how the main character, John Talon, was sorta an unrealistic idealist wandering around telling people about how he was going to setup a new government with new rules and such. I found one particular scene compelling because he was seriously telling some guy how one day he would have to abide by new laws. Did the character and author forget that this is still a zombie apoc setting? Yes we all know that John is quite the warrior but he was getting a little ahead of himself.

That leads me to another comment and that is how in all of these books, the main character and his friends are close to being immortal, capable of handling anything and getting out of any rut. Very odd since even a seasoned survivor would not be able to be on their A-game all the time.

So yeah this series ended without a bang. Sure it was much better than Kim Paffenroth's series, but it didn't hold a candle to J. L. Bourne's works. Having a hero is a good thing, but making him superhuman is going over the realistic line. This applies to the plot too. It takes one heck of an idealist to want to trek across America to retrieve the Constitution, Bill of Rights, and Declaration of Independence when you're running from zombies on a daily basis.
Rating - Mid

Monday, January 02, 2012

Skyrim (RPG PC Game 2011)

After 80+ hours of gameplay I went ahead and finished off all of the primary quests for the main storyline. Not too bad for an ending but yeah there is still a bunch of stuff that can be done.

As with all of the Elder Scroll games, this one was an improvement over that of Oblivion. Mainly, I didn't have to hack the leveling system as the mobs in this game always were good to go in the difficulty arena.

Visual, physics, music, and everything in between were spot on. There were a few bugs were I clipped through the world, couldn't get past an invisible barrier, etc but all in all it was a nice experience.

They should have a way to easily respec your character though. I had to use various console commands to respec and even then, sometimes it didn't work properly.

At its core the game is the same as all of the others though. You have a quest to go get something, you talk to a guy who will only help you if you go into a dungeon and get an object or kill a person. After you complete that, then you are given the location of another dungeon to get the original item. Sometimes there are various levels of this and that can get a bit annoying.

So yeah the game was fun; I think I'm burned out for a while though. Need to rest my eyes and take a longish nap.
Rating - High