Chaos in Print

On the short list of craziest things I’d ever done in my life, this certainly ranked in the top 5. But then, insanity is a relative thing when you’ve led my life. The past few months have been spent in a room, in the basement, staring at the ceiling and wondering why no one is calling me. Lord knows I’ve sent out enough resumes and demo tapes. I’ve had my fair share of interviews, only to be told that the company decided to go in another direction. I’ve given up on doing those follow-up phone calls where you ask the interviewer why you didn’t get the job and ask for tips on improvement, if only because I was getting no real information, just inspirational bullshit: “Oh, it wasn’t you, it’s us. Your stuff is real good, just keep with it and someone will hire you eventually!” My breaking point was coming soon. And when I break, I usually do it in a large public format, thus causing maximum embarrassment.

Continue reading Lineman

Red, Blue, Green, Gold

Chaos in Print

I’ve been spending a lot of time at the Entwistle School lately. You know, skulking in the hallways, scaring the children, stuff like that. I’m kidding! About six months ago, the Entwistle Public Library was consolidated with the Entwistle School Library, thus moving the library into the school. This has many benefits over the old library. The Entwistle Public Library used to be open really odd hours: 6-8 on Wednesday night and 10-12 on Saturday morning. That was it. But now, it’s open whenever the school’s open! Plus, no offence to the little old ladies who used to run the Entwistle Library, but now that it’s in the school, we have a real, competent librarian working…one who knows how to order in good books from the bigger libraries. And, since these were the kind of changes I’d been lobbying for over the past decade or so, I figured it was time to start supporting my local library again.

Continue reading Red, Blue, Green, Gold

Movie Review – Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire

Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire

Directed by Mike Newell

Starring Daniel Radcillfe, Emma Watson, Rupert Grint, Michael Gambon, Robbie Coltrane, Maggie Smith, Gary Oldman, Alan Rickman, Brendan Gleeson, and Ralph Fiennes.

So, I haven’t read them Harry Potter books yet, but when the first film was being made about 4 or 5 years ago, I started following its development online.  This was also around the time that Goblet of Fire was originally published.  Naturally, everyone was wondering about this fourth book.  At over 600 pages, many felt that it was too long to be a kids book, let alone adapted into a major feature film.  Many people – even Harry Potter screenwriter Steve Kloves – lobbied that Goblet of Fire be cut in half and made into two films.  But, the studio said one book, one film.  And now, here we are, four years later, and we see if Goblet of Fire could indeed be adapted as a single movie.

It looks like things are finally looking up for Harry Potter.  For this summer, he’s managed to ditch his muggle aunt and uncle and he’s hanging out with Ron Weasly and Hermione Granger.  They’re off to see the Quidditch world cup.  It looks like a great summer, but….  The World Cup is busted up and brought to a halt by the Death Eaters, the followers of Lord Voldemort.  That starts off the fourth year at Hogwarts on a rather ominous tone.  But, soon, it’s replaced by revelry, as Hogwarts is host to the Tri Wizards Tournament, a tournament between Hogwarts and two rival schools where the winner will be promised eternal glory, and the losers will most likely die.  (Not to different from most high school sports.)  Everyone who wants to enter the tournament is to drop their names in the Goblet of Fire, and at the appointed time, the names of the three entrants will be spit out.  But, something odd happens.  The Goblet spits out a fourth name…Harry Potter.  The race is now on for Harry to survive the tournament.  And, along the way, he gets help from the newest Defense against the Dark Arts teacher, Mad Eye Moody.  Can Harry survive the tournament?  Will he still have his friends afterwards?  What does all this have to do with Voldemort?  And throw in some healthy doses of teen angst.

Very fine movie!  That’s all I can say.  Probably, the most unique aspect of this film is throwing in the teen angst.  The whole mid-section revolves around a school dance, and Harry, Ron, and Hermione’s typical teenage problems that come with a first dance.  It really adds a new dimension to these characters, and really hammers home the fact that these kids are growing up.  Oh, but don’t worry.  There’s still lots of nifty special effects and things blow up real good.  But the characters come first, and that’s always good.  I’m more interested than ever to read the books now.  I know that they had to cut a lot, but exactly what was cut…well, I need to know.

3.5 Nibs


The Fastest Man Alive

Chaos in Print

AUTHOR’S NOTE: I’m sure that, this is a lot closer to what my friend expected when he wanted me to write an article about why I thought Batman was cool.

The year was 1990. Hollywood was expecting that there’d be this explosion of comic book movies, with Batman having been the big hit the year before. But, it didn’t quite explode…it just kind of fizzled. It was enough, though, to produce the TV show I was sitting down to watch. At the end of the 2-hour pilot, I was completely in love. The show lasted only one year, but I was able to catch every episode of The Flash.

Continue reading The Fastest Man Alive

CGI Scorecard

Chaos in Print

I think I’ve made it abundantly clear that I love animation. I have a particular fondness for computer animation. Think about it: this is probably the newest moviemaking medium. This is a medium that we’ve been able to watch grow and evolve over the past few years. And then, I saw that Disney was releasing a special 10th anniversary edition of Toy Story. Wow! It was 10 years ago that Toy Story hit theatres and it was marveled as a technical achievement. That means this medium is 10 years old. So, I just wanted to sit down, note how far we’ve come, point out certain developments that have been made, and try to ponder where it’s going.

Continue reading CGI Scorecard