112606 A Blog for all seasons.
  So, my favorite blog of the moment (other than my friend John’s blog and my friend Ann’s blog of course) is one with a great title: ‘If Charlie Parker Was a Gunslinger, There'd Be a Whole Lot of Dead Copycats’. The subtitle of the blog is more or less all the description you’ll get: ‘Cultural and Personal Observations by Tom Sutpen, Stephen Cooke and Richard Gibson.’ Really what one can find on the blog is loads and loads of great photos and sometimes even some winning audio / video clips. The photo to the left is an example of one of many, many, great images posted on the blog. Ranging from literature, films, music, painting, and even simply cityscapes. the blog just becomes super addicting once you start checking it out. Where else could you find a vintage film clip of Duke Ellington and his orchestra performing and then having a record manufactured and pressed from the session? (See it HERE.) Sure sometimes ‘If Charlie Parker Was a Gunslinger, There'd Be a Whole Lot of Dead Copycats’ can come off as a tad pretentious. Take a brief quote from Sutpen’s update about the passing of film director Robert Altman: “Fixing a definition on his unusually vast body of work, quantifying and reaching conclusions about it as one would a

set of statistics, is an errand only a fool would attempt and only a knave think honorable*” You know what’s a fool’s errand? Using the expression “an errand only a fool would attempt” in a paragraph and not realizing you sound like a script for William Shatner. (See the whole piece the quote was taken from HERE.) Pretensions aside, trust me, the blog grows on you. Plus, I can’t fault the Sutpen, he may sound pretentious but he is right. For those of you browsing at work there is occasional nudity so be aware but how bad can it be to see a few boobies? In fact I hear told it is good for your health. The enjoyable and addicting ‘If Charlie Parker Was a Gunslinger, There'd Be a Whole Lot of Dead Copycats’ can be found HERE. Check it out!

112106 Robert Altman passed away.
  One of the great living directors has passed away. Robert Altman was probably best known as the director of the film ‘MASH’. He had a long and varied career dating back to the 1950s. Starting in short films and documentaries Altman moved to television. By the end of the 60s he was directing films but his breakout came with the real of the 1970 comedy / drama ‘MASH’. A critical and commercial success, the film shot Altman to notoriety and spawned a TV series (that Altman hated.) He used to say that his son made more money from the film than he did because his son co-wrote the infamous ‘MASH’ theme song. Throughout the 70s Altman churned out many, many, remarkable films but by the 80s he seemed to have burned out and after the critical and financial failure of his film Popeye. He would slow down and return to television to direct would continue to direct films (and theatrical productions as well.) Throughout the 90s Altman worked steadily and even after the year 2000 he would still make several films. His final feature would turn out to be the film adaptation of the National Public Radio series ‘A Prairie Home Companion’. There is a lot that has been said about Altman and his
films much better than I ever could but I thought I would share a few of my favorites. Of course ‘MASH’ is a great film but I actually am a big fan of his so called failure ‘Popeye’. I was raised on that film and watched it a ton when I was a kid. It’s a shame the DVD release has no features what so ever because I think a documentary about he film would be downright fascinating. I am huge fan of another film that was a box office failure for Altman: ‘The Long Goodbye’.
  It is a great 70s crime / drama staring the underrated Elliot Gould as Philip Marlowe and has Sterling Hayden in a great supporting role. (Hell, the movie even has a brief appearance by a then unknown Arnold Schwarzenegger.) The film is comprised entirely of moving camera shots (a style Altman would return to with another fav’ of mine: ‘Gosford Park’.) Throughout his career Altman would make many movies that are often mentioned as classics, here’s a few you might know: ‘Nashville’, ‘McCabe & Mrs. Miller’, ‘The Player’, and ‘Short Cuts’. His films will no doubt live on and he has made so many great ones that he has easily earned his legendary status but that doesn’t change my hope that I would still get to see some more Altman films made. With any luck he is wrangling actors in the big studio in the sky all ready. Rest in peace. A better written page about his passing can be found at Yahoo HERE. Another can be found at CNN right HERE. His filmography at IMDb can be seen HERE.
112006 Overdue update with a little Handsome Donkey
  Who is Handsome Donkey? How is Handsome Donkey? What is Handsome Donkey? Well, don’t look for all the answers from me. The site (www.HandsomeDonkey.com) doesn’t offer a whole heck of a lot of information... What it does have is some very funny short films, the best of which is one entitled ‘Le Montage.’ Thanks to Cat for sending me this, once I watched the film I just had to post about it. The film is a very funny love story that runs about nine minutes and is hosted at the site one.Revver.com. A direct link to ‘Le Montage’ can be found HERE or just go to Handsome Donkey HERE. My second favorite short that has been posted on Handsome Donkey is easily ‘Donkey Labs Presents... Patents Pending’ and it can be seen HERE. Both shorts, in fact all the shorts on Handsome Donkey are extremely well made and quite funny. I would love to know more about the making of them but I suppose that is just the dork in me. For now I will just mention that the main credits for the films are: Adam Countee, Brendan Countee, Marc Gilbar and Aaron Greenberg and I cannot wait to see what they make next!
111506 New Review
  Just added my review of 'Memento' director Christopher Nolan's latest film, 'The Prestige.' I think I need to see the movie again but for now the review can be found HERE.
110806 New Review
  Finally added my review of Martin Scorsese’s latest film: ‘The Departed.’ I really liked the movie despite the fact that it is not the most uplifting feature I have ever seen. The review can be found HERE.
110706 Hot Fuzz update

I know I posted about the film before buy I just can’t wait to see ‘Hot Fuzz!’ I’m a big fan of ‘Shaun of the Dead’ and I’m thinking I am going to be a big fan of ‘Hot Fuzz’ too. Edgar Wright and Simon Pegg are back along with many others that worked on ‘Shaun of the Dead.’ I keep meaning to check out Wright and Pegg’s TV show ‘Spaced’ on DVD but in the mean time I just make do with the teasers for ‘Hot Fuzz’ that have just been released. So far so good, the teaser trailers don't show too much but what they do show looks promising. The two short teasers can be seen HERE and HERE. The 'Hot Fuzz' official site can be seen HERE and the Working Title Films site for the film is HERE.

110606 Idiocracy, where are you?
So, I am late posting about this film and it is something that should have been mentioned on Real Political Face Talk a long time ago. The film in question is Mike Judge’s latest motion picture: ‘Idiocracy.’ The film is about a private in the military who is picked for a cryogenics test program. The private undergoes the test and wakes up 500 years in the future to discover the world is populated by dumb people. So it goes like this, the film tested pretty well and had some good buzz behind it and then... well... *poof* no release date. There was talk of trouble marketing the film and now there is no released date for theaters or DVD.
Actually, 'Idiocracy' did have a release date but with no marketing and at a very small amount of theaters. Look, I haven’t seen the movie, it could be terrible but I have to say that based on Judge's past work (Beavis & Butthead, Office Space, etc) there is probably some bad studio judgment to blame. The addicting blog ‘Cartoon Brew’ even chimed in with a post about the film:

“One of the biggest film mysteries of 2006 still remains unanswered: Why did Fox bury the release of IDIOCRACY, the new live-action film by KING OF THE HILL and BEAVIS AND BUTT-HEAD creator Mike Judge? Today's LA TIMES has an op-ed piece by Patt Morrison about this topic, though it doesn't really offer much in the way of answers. I'm surprised that the LA TIMES didn't treat this as a news story and interview people like Judge to get to the bottom of the story. A Fox spokesman says in the piece that the film was always planned as a "limited release" but limited releases rarely (if ever) get treated this poorly, especially for a well-reviewed film from an established filmmaker like Judge. I'm more inclined to agree with the line of reasoning presented by the TIMES's Morrison:

Did Judge's film, by sheer happenstance, mirror Rupert Murdoch's blueprint for a Fox-fed nation of fat, dumb and happy? Is the problem a threatened lawsuit over the way "Idiocracy" treats corporate America? Starbucks in 2505 serves speedy sex acts with the coffee, and Carl's Jr. and H&R Block get the same rough handling. But that's why studios have lawyers, and that's why we have the 1st Amendment.

Perhaps it's been cast out of distribution Eden for the same reason that Newsweek made "Losing Afghanistan" its cover story last week in every country except the United States. We got a cover story about a celebrity photographer....And that would be because Americans are being mollycoddled and infantilized. If we're not getting the truth — even delivered via satire — it might be because leaders think we can't take it, or they may be afraid of what we might do if we did get it. President Bush dismissed leaked intelligence reports critical of the Iraq war because they could "create confusion in the minds of the American people." Goodness no; don't confuse us with information. ”

It would not surprise me at all if the ‘Brew and Morrison are correct about 'Idiocracy': Fox just wanted this film to go away. What ever the case, the film should be shown. Why am I spending so much time on this movie? Because I want to see it damnit! The 'Cartoon Brew' page can be seen HERE and another 'Cartoon Brew' page with a short review of the film can be found HERE. Wikipedia has a page about the film HERE.

110306 Smokin' Aces... again.

Back in August I mentioned a film that I have been looking forward to for a long time: Joe Carnahan's ‘Smokin' Aces.’ This film wrapped in 2005 and I have been itching to see it since I first read about it. I loved Carnahan’s last film ‘Narc’ and his BMW short film ‘Ticker.’

This film has quite the cast including: Ben Affleck, Jason Bateman, Peter Berg, Andy Garcia, Alicia Keys, Ray Liotta, Jeremy Piven and Ryan Reynolds to name a few... While it may not have quite as much name power as Martin Scorsese’s ‘The Departed’ it is damn close. I love the cast and some them like Reynold’s are actors I’ve liked in films but don’t seem to really dig the movies themselves. Reynold’s may have found a winner here with ‘Smokin’ Aces’ Then again what do I know, I thought "Blade III" was going to be a winner but I was sure wrong about that one. At any rate I’ve liked every film of Carnahan’s that I’ve seen so far (I still haven’t seen his first movie) so I’m bound to like this one, right? Riiiiiiiiiiiigggghht. I’m adding this update because the US trailer and website are finally up and the release date is set for January, 25th 2007. The Working Title Films site for the movie can be found HERE. The official US site for the film is can be found HERE. The trailer is on the official US (and there is an international one on the Working Title site as well.)
You can see old updates in the "Old News " section of this site.

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