Friday, April 25, 2008

Speed Racer

Go Speed Racer Go Music Video


Am I the only one who thinks Speed Racer looks kind of awesome? I've thought so since the teaser, one of the most thrilling movie promos I've ever seen. Download an HD version, put on some nice headphones or good speakers, soak it up, and try and disagree.

Granted, it's from the Wachowski brothers, who managed to follow up their can't-miss Matrix Reloaded trailer with the most heartbreaking of misfires, and after that produced an even-worse third installment that torpedoed any remaining goodwill for the franchise. But despite the total dramatic ineptitude of the Matrix sequels, the first Matrix proves that they are, or once were, capable of effective storytelling, and that's enough to give me hope that the Speed Racer movie will be at least somewhat as awesome as it promises to be.

Yes, it's pretty cheesy, but maybe the bubblegum-light subject matter will keep the Wachowskis from falling into the black hole of pretentiousness that doomed the Matrix sequels. It's a colorful, live-action anime spectacle full of race cars doing the impossible, and what could be better than that? This is sensory overload, eye candy in the truest sense; the bright colors almost literally taste sweet to your eyes. The trailers are such pure fun that they fill me with joy, and if the movie is any good at all it could easily join the ranks of my favorites. I can even forgive the monkey, and I hate monkey humor.

Normally the heavy reliance on CG over real car stunts would put me off, as in the Matrix Reloaded chase, whose computer generated vehicles undermined any stunts that may have been practical. But this movie creates such a complete fantasy universe that reality is irrelevant. It might as well be an animated car racing movie that happens to feature real actors. The people stand out more than the effects. It does look a lot like a video game, though -- specifically it looks a lot like MegaRace, a futuristic racer PC game I played back in middle school that featured similar colorful loop-de-loops. Even that just evokes in me fond nostalgia (despite MegaRace being a somewhat mediocre game).

I am trying to keep my expectations low, because the Wachowskis cannot be relied upon, but the truth is, yes, I am pretty excited to see Speed Racer. IMAX, anyone?

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Thursday, April 24, 2008

Hancock

I enjoyed the trailer for Hancock. For a big budget special effects comedy about a misbehaving superhero, you could do a lot worse, and if you've seen My Super Ex-Girlfriend, you already have. This trailer alone offers more value than the entirety of that disaster. I like the superhero-as-troubled-celebrity conceit, too. The director so far seems to have a good grasp of a difficult tone, and the trailer does a surprisingly deft job of playing the joke very straight, thanks to Will Smith and the always welcome Jason Bateman.



Not sure what to make of that prison scene though. The editing seems meant to imply something, but I can't figure out what. Surely he didn't crush the inmate's head?

Of course, while the trailer offers a better overview of the movie, it does heavily truncate the brilliant freight train sight gag (I love Smith's underreaction, and that the chaos plays out in the distance rather than being made into spectacle -- it's so much funnier that way) and leaves out the hilarious whale scene from the teaser trailer.



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Wednesday, April 09, 2008

Notebook Paper

Sure, posting links may not be the height of blogging, but I haven't been blogging much lately anyway, so maybe it's time to lower my standards. Anyway, as a die-hard fan of college rule paper over wide rule paper since middle school (way before college!), I really enjoyed this Onion piece:

Mead Releases New Grad-School-Ruled Notebook

The Onion

Mead Releases New Grad-School-Ruled Notebook

RICHMOND, VA—Company officials say the new notebooks feature lines 3.55 millimeters apart, making them "infinitely more practical" for postgraduate work than the 7.1 millimeter college-ruled notebooks.

Tuesday, April 08, 2008

Weighty Decisions



Here is the first in a series of sketches called "Weighty Decisions" made by my old Out of Jimmy's Head bosses, Adam and Tim.

Now it's a hilarious web series, and for bonus comedy cred, it stars the voices of Ed Helms and Rob Corddry. The sketches were originally made for Cartoon Network, but most never aired. They're perfect for the internet, though, and now that they're finally online, this is me doing my part to publicize them.

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