Category: Movies & TV


The new Toyota Prius C commercials are driving me insane…..er.  The overly perky, preppy, bubbly, nitwits playing some obnoxious variant of the boardgame Life make me want to drive a fuel inefficient Hummer right through their house and run every single one of them over.  Maybe I’ll just drive the Hummer there and perform a collect smack across the face with a 2×4.  That might be just a tad more satisfying.  I might even add some nails to the 2×4.

Platinum Dunes’ Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles to Feature Alien Origin | Superhero Hype.

I’ll admit, I’m a big kid.  I grew up on great shows: Transformers, G.I. Joe, Buggs Bunny, and of course, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles.  Please note that the name includes the word MUTANT.  In yet another reboot of this movie series, Michael Bay has announced that he is not going with the original origin for the Turtles: the mutagenic Ooze that mutates them into half-turtle, half-human ass kickers.  (Notice how many times I used a form of the word MUTANT?)  No, instead, he’s going with an alien origin………

Why, I ask you….why!?!?  They are Teenage MUTANT Ninja Turtles.  Not Teenage ALIEN Ninja Turtles.  What’s the point?  Of all the things to change, why change something that’s in the fucking title!?!?  Now if you’ll excuse me, I have to go cry in the dark clutching my Donatello action figure.

Of course, there’s going to be someone suggesting that the show is at least partially to blame, and someone does in the article.  That’s stupid.  It’s a documentary, first and foremost.  No different than any other show explaining how a car is built or an airplane is flown.  Watching those documentaries doesn’t make you any more qualified to build a car or pilot an airplane.  Just because I’ve seen Bloodsport 800 times doesn’t mean I can enter the Kumatai and kick some ass.  As with most things, especially potentially deadly things, you need lots and lots of training to know what the hell you are doing.

 

Second, the show is preempted with your typical “Don’t try this at home” disclaimer.  Even going as far to indicate that Les himself had to research an area and talk to local guides.  He also happens to carry a means to communicate with the film crew, just in case.  Of course, Code didn’t even bring a cell phone.

All this shows is that no matter how careful you are, people are stupid.  They watch one series or see one movie and suddenly think they experts….or at least know enough.  I’m really surprised stuff like this hasn’t happened more often.  I’m sure there’s some guy somewhere thinking he can swing from building to building like Spider-Man, or can fly a plane now that they’ve played through Fighting Aces on the Playstation.  And who doesn’t think they at least know a “little” karate after watching the Karate Kid.  You know you do….we’ve all seen you do the Crane Kick stance.  Let me know how you feel after someone sweeps the leg.

If you’re going to do something stupid that you’ve seen on a TV show then at least try and have the gray matter to make a backup plan.  If that means calling ahead for an ambulance before you try to do a flip on your bike that you saw on X-Games last night or  bringing a frakking cell phone with you when you waltz off into the woods with a banket and a lighter.  Unless of course you’re one of those people that does the backyard extreme wrestling stuff….don’t make any backup plans.  You’re too far gone to save.

Now, before I get started, let me clear a few things up.  I’m not religious.  Though I wouldn’t classify myself as an Atheist, I certainly fall into the Agnostic category.  Nor do I have any problem with any particular religion as a whole or people’s choice to follow said religion.  Basically, I don’t care what religion you are or what your beliefs are.  It’s none of my business, and generally doesn’t effect me in any way.  But that’s a whole other discussion.

 

I’d also like to point out that while Sam Elliott, some of the other actors, the author of the books, etc. have made the claim that the sequel was canned due to pressure from religious groups, New Line has taken the “Box Office” route.  Stating that the first movie simply didn’t make much money in the US, which is true.  It’s world wide box office take was over $380 million.  The movie only cost $180 million to make, so it certainly made it’s money back.  But the US being the “primary” target for movies, it certainly is a viable reason as well.  However, it is also well known that there were many organized protests over the films release as well as a scathing rip by Bill O’Reilly over it’s non-Christian views.  I believe he proclaimed it a “war on Christmas” due to it’s release during the holiday season. 

That being said, IF this movie was shelved due to pressure from the Religious folks, that really pisses me off.  Granted, it wasn’t the best movie in the world ever made.  I actually enjoyed the Narnia movies more, and certainly Lord of the Rings is far and away better than both of them.  But that’s not the point now is it?  It’s people sticking their nose somewhere that it doesn’t belong.  What right does any religious group have to dictate to me what I can or can not watch?  Just like with TV or Radio, if you don’t like it, you don’t have to watch it.  But just because you don’t like it, doesn’t mean other people shouldn’t be able to enjoy it.   So does this mean that from now on we should have someone of the Catholic faith approve or veto all future movies?  That’s a scary thought to me, and unfortunately, considering this is essentially what happened with The Golden Compass.  Try imagining what would happen if Atheists tried to organize a boycott over Passion of the Christ because it went against their views.

As a “non-believer,” this current trend scares the hell out of me.  Take the recent story about Cecil Bothwell of Ashville, NC.  Recently elected to the City Council, suits were being threatened due to his proclaimed Atheist views and an antiquated law in the NC Constitution which states those “who shall deny the being of Almighty God” cannot hold office.  Wait….what?!  H. K. Edgerton, threatened to file suit against the city. “My father was a Baptist minister,” Mr. Edgerton said. “I’m a Christian man. I have problems with people who don’t believe in God.” Mr. Edgerton is a local civil rights leader and founder of Southern Heritage 411, an organization that promotes the interests of black Southerners.  The irony of a man who fights for equal rights for one group of people condemning and curtailing the rights of another group is mind boggling.  Fortunately, it doesn’t look like Mr. Edgerton got his way, so for now, Mr. Bothwell is still in office. But the feeling towards non-believers is heard loud an clear.

I guess I got off on a bit of a tangent, and the whole conversation might be better taken to the message boards, but seeing this over the weekend got me all riled up.  Bottom line is this, no religious group should be dicatating what I can read, what music I can listen to, what movies or TV I watch, or what video games I play.  Especially when the only issue is that it goes against their own personal beliefs. I’ll end this rant with a few words from a very wise man, George Carlin (R.I.P.): “Keep Thy Religion To Thy Self.”

 

Every time a new reality TV show is created I die a little bit more inside.  It’s a wonder I am still able to function, since that seems to be about the only thing that the TV studios can pump out anymore.  I can understand American Idol….I don’t watch it, but I understand it.  Singers are out there that need that first break to get a recording contract.  Swell.  But a cappella?  Is there really a big calling for that somewhere?  Are there loads of record labels out there looking for the next big a cappella group?  I just don’t get it. Is there even a section for that in the stores somewhere?  And who really gives a crap?

Seriously, reality TV has gotten out of control.  It even has it’s own dedicatied cable channel.  I blame MTV.  It all started with the Real World….which I admit, I was sucked into.  But after the first season it was all down hill.  Survivor, The Next Top Model, The Apprentice, Dancing with the Stars, The Bachelor, Who Wants to Marry My Midget Dad, the countless celebrity “this is my life” shows, Jon and Kate, and on and on and on.  I realize that Hollywood is out of ideas and making a reality TV show is cheap….but is there nothing else?

I guess at least half of the blame falls on the public.  I can’t go a day without overhearing someone talking about who got voted off what and events on such-and-such reality show.  Maybe it’s just me, but I just don’t give a s**t about who wins any dance competition, who can sing, and what the hell Jon and Kate had for dinner.  I’m too busy worrying about what’s going on in my life to be caught up in someone else’s.  I watch TV to escape from my life for a little while….not get all worked up over someone else’s problems that don’t effect me in any way.

The whole Jon and Kate thing really pissed me off.  How can anyone think that putting a couple on TV with 8+ kids was a good idea.  Does anyone not think those kids are now worse off for having gone through this debacle?  Especially having to watch their parents be torn apart on national TV and every news website for weeks.  But hey….they got ratings.  And that’s what really counts, right?

When they started with these advanced ads they were’t “too” bad.  Some fancy grafics down in one corner.  Sure, it was a little big, but I could still see most of the screen.  God forbid if the show I am watching happens to have subtitles…I miss half of the conversation now along with half the screen.  Sometimes they squish the screen downbut that’s rare and it isn’t much better anyways….it feels like a forced Picture-in-Picture.  But now it’s half the screen, sometimes clips from the show, images of the actors laughing and hugging each other, or just standing there all menecing.  All the while I miss some jackass getting tasered on COPS.  Sure I can still see most of it…but what’s the point if I don’t get to see the guy shimmy and piss himself?

Now there are even ads that have their own little sound effects.  It’s not enough to suck up half the screen but you need to start taking over the soundtrack, too?  Why the hell am I hearing swooshing sounds music during Gladiator?  Oh wait, it’s an ad for The Closer.  WTF?

They’ve even started showing ads for products now.  It’s not enough that my show has to be broken up and interupted for actual commercials.  Now we also have to have ads within the shows.  Enough is enough.

First thing is first, no ads for products.  That’s what commercials are for.  Second, cut the sound track to these things.  They may seem like little noises to get our attention but it disrupts the current show.  And third, STOP USING HALF THE SCREEN!  We get just as much information from just a bar at the bottom of the screen.  It doesn’t make things more impressive, only more annoying.  It makes me want to avoid the chanel and just watch it later on Hulu.



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