Archive for the ‘ Views ’ Category

The Late Pilgrim

In the wake of Deathwing’s return let’s start it with the movie posts (cause I don’t know when I will manage to login to save Azeroth)… and as my instructor at work pointed out I am really special (duuhrr…) so some of the stuff I post about will possibly have already passed by most of our readers but heck! So I have already posted a bit about Scott Pilgrim and I shared my skepticism about the movie. Some of you might already know that many consider “Scott Pilgrim vs. the World” a box office failure. A while ago I came across a very nice article about the fact that the movie doesn’t have a solid target audience. I couldn’t Google it up again, sorry. So I wasn’t surprised much by the fact that the movie didn’t do very well on the big screen. Maybe I was lucky that me and my brother are possibly the best audience combo (an awesome and yet humble ex-hardcore-gaming slacker with broad geek knowledge and his little bro who is still at the age when hipstering is not disapproved on) this movie can get so we had a blast when we blu-rayed it on the TV. He hasn’t seen the comics yet so he liked the story garnished with all the pro-comic visual style a lot. As for me… well, I was content. The movie adaptation mainly focuses on the first and the last volumes and provides a pretty decent movie pace and completion. I loved the first volume of the comic and totally disregarded the totally hipster latter ones so I was ok with the whole charade. Edgar Wright did an amazing job at transitioning the first volume on screen… it was like each page was transformed into a scene on screen. The visuals and audio were really well placed within the feel of the comic. Scott Pilgrim even managed to lessen my rage over the ravaged second half of “Kick-ass”. In conclusion if comics and video games don’t put you off feel free to enjoy this movie with a beer and a bro 😉

Also here’s a little musical piece by “The Subways” that is how I hear “Sex Bob-omb” in my head. [Click ze image!] By the way “The Subways” also did the “Rock & Roll Queen” for RocknRolla a while back.

Super Sex Bob-omb

Amazon’s Kindle

This week I had a great experience with this kindle thing and I can say that now it will be easier than ever to put aside the old paper books. I will go back to them from time to time of course, just for old times’ sake. For kindle is comfortable and small and cute. And it provides Internet everywhere you go. Yes, that’s a huge plus, you need to pay for it, sure, but I would like to talk more about the reading part, because that’s the main thing. I was confused at first, I tried to turn over the pages once or twice, but there are very few things to get used to until the real greatness overwhelms you.
So you can read practically everything. When it comes to .pdf format it can be a pain, but why do you need to go there? Use .mobi and forget about everything else. Kindle has its own integrated dictionary and search functionality too. I can think of two disadvantages:

1. It may seem a little bit slow to you at first, but when it comes to reading, you don’t need it to be faster. Really. What’s the hurry?

2. You can’t read in the dark. But that’s what makes it so brilliant.

[advertisement] With kindle the time you spend using the urban transport or hanging around at the bus stations wont mean a thing. [/advertisement]

So now I know what I want for a Christmas present 🙂

Eves

“something old, something new, something borrowed, something blue…”

Well, that is actually fitting for the “Neon Genesis Evangelion” post. I convinced Gouken, Mannfred and Pehr into watching a full Evangelion marathon… at least the original series. So last weekend we got around to do just that. Evangelion kicks off like a pretty standard monster of the week giant mecha mash up until half the way we are served tangled web of emotional issues (a lot of those) and mankind threatening conspiracies and also someone in Gainax had a bad case of the blues and dropped a very radical ending. I was somewhat dissatisfied by the sudden and ambiguous end of the TV series but thankfully The End of Evangelion movie wraps things pretty nicely yet again with a slight tinge of ambiguity. Beside the story (not for the lighthearted or lightminded), the art style while being several years old keeps up with most of the new kids on the block. There are several spin-off series (High School Alternative Universes mostly) but it is worth to mention the possible live action adaptation and the remake on the TV series into 4 movies from which the first two are already out. Sooner or later if you considers yourself a fan of anime you should get around to watching this as it is considered rather influential. If you feel a bit down afterwards you can always do like Gainex and take a dose of FLCL. Also this anime is responsible for giving us delicious Asuka!

Death

Chill my bromies I am not going emo on you. I was slacking in the living room with my brother few nights ago. We were wondering what to entertain ourselves with and decided that “Black Death” is something decent to watch before bedtime.

I am very content with this movie. We are introduced very smoothly into the nasty reality of the years when the bubonic plague is ravaging Europe. So there are corpses and stuff and a monk with a secret relationship. He is not gay! This is about medieval Europe not nowadays. People are dying and suddenly Boromir comes along claiming he wants to investigate a village that is rumored to have managed to remain untouched by the plague. The monk tags along as a guide with the party, which is not very balanced – only warriors without healer, in hopes of finding his loved one. Then they encounter all the chaos caused by the plague, also witches and cults, betrayal and torture. What I liked was that the movie was realistic and believable, the mysticism and the action were in just the right dose so the movie was not farfetched or boring. Worth a look if you like medieval stuff… with death and swords…

Monsters

Two days before yesterday (this is what happens when I’m writing posts in advance) was the first movie evening in weeks and after a couple of bad choices we finally decided to watch Monsters. In imdb you can find a lot of bad reviews about it. Most of them are the same: “it was boring”, “nothing happens in this movie”, “it wasn’t D-9”. I agree with that, but with a condition. It could be boring, if you expect District 9, and it will look like nothing happens, if you expect a certain thing to happen, but in the end something entirely else does. In other words, this movie was very well done for what it is, and nothing else. I would even say that it was very beautiful movie, because of the directing, the editing, the soundtrack and .. yeah, even the idea. I loved every little thing Whitney Able did and while I can’t say the same about Scoot McNairy I can’t say anything very bad either. Yes, they are not very likable characters and the dialog is often quite stupid, but it looked more realistic to me this way. Besides, I saw this movie more like a piece of art, not only because its budget doesn’t allow it to be an action flick, but because it turns out to be a lot better than that.

I won’t lie, the last 15 minutes mostly made the movie for me and including the fact that the first two are the last, the movie made full circle and left me there thinking about what I want and where I wand to be. So if you want to watch just “a giant monster movie” I wouldn’t recommend this one, although the monsters too are pretty cool.

Pipiru piru piru pipiru pi

Something rather old, lying for a while in the anime pile, that I never got around to watching while I was paired with a little devil girl that loved this “Bludgeoning Angel Dokuro-Chan” show. What can I say about this… well, Dokuro-Chan started as short comics strips series so the general story in the anime is not fleshed out much. We have this normal schoolboy with an angel harem following him around kind of story. The main aspects of the show are very violent and bloody slapsticks (usually involving the death and immediate resurrection of our protagonist by the sweet Dokuro-Chan) and innuendo jokes. That’s why (in my opinion) the show ran only for 12 short episodes. Well, if you are into comedy animes and ridiculous amounts of gore I think you will find it as refreshing as I did. Really helps you unwind. Also it is a fair representation of how we run things here in the “Clubs” office 😉

Halt! Cyber Time!

What’s with this girl playing indie games and that guy reading books? Surely, there is something wrong with them! So yeah, I read a book and it was a good book. In “Halting State” Charles Stross introduces us to a very likely tomorrow where the Internet is constantly inside your back pocket or should I say in your reality enhancing goggle phones. The story revolves around a major mmo-game robbery which has the developers and the police stumped when suddenly all matter of shady characters and secret agencies start popping around and the life threatening dangers move from the virtual to the real world. While there is a bit of technological / financial mumbo-jumbo, everything is understandable and I really enjoyed the first-person view in which each chapter is delivered through the eyes of one of the three major “players” – an ordinary police officer, a dedicated investigating accountant and a recently fired programmer named Jack 😛 I should visit the lair of my shadow broker to try nicking something else written by Stross while I wait for the “Halting State” sequel with the codename “Rule 34” hopefully arriving in the early 2011.

An Extract from “Halting State”

Yet another indie game

Today is Friday so we finished testing Trine, or at least some of us did. But lets start from the beginning. So, me and my friend are Apple geeks and we volunteered for this task three days ago. I wasn’t going to do that at first, because I really don’t have time enough to get my beauty sleep this days, but then I found out it’s not just any game, it’s Trine. I wanted to play it ever since I watched the review on Zero punctuation, but I didn’t want to bother playing it on Windows. What a perfect opportunity this was, to play it for free, on Mac and above all – to be useful somehow. It sounds great, but I wasn’t that useful, because I was tired in the evenings and I sucked at playing it. I hope only that they will let me finished it, regardless of how slow I am and the fact that I was supposed to test it until today. On the other hand I couldn’t find a lot of bugs, so I guess the developers did their job pretty well.

Anyway, the game is great. I don’t care about the story, because the gameplay is much more intriguing. You have three characters: a Mage, a Thief and a Knight. Their souls are bound in one and you can switch between them in order to get through the levels. Yes, they have different powers, you know, it’s easier to fight with the Knight, while moving objects with the Mage and do.. actually everything with the Thief. It sounds boring, but it’s cool. The set is gorgeous, but like every indie game, you shouldn’t expect something awesome.

The game is available for Windows (and for Mac in November, I hope) on Steam. You can go and check it out!

Mathmatical

So, it seems we took our sweet time. Again. Well, actually Jill is a busy working bee now and I might have to continue usurping the scene here more often than not. We had this little concept… meh, whatever it is best to run things here on the go, anyway!

A while ago I was hanging back seaside with some bros, drinking beers and watching obnoxious stuff on the Internet when Trillian decided to show us some “Ugly Americans”. Although impressed I didn’t get around to introducing it here until now. I don’t know why really. But it seems as good a time as any as we are getting new episodes aired now. What we have as a main protagonist is Mark Lilly – a social worker that reminds me all too much to that cool guy from “The Office” show. Lilly is living in modern days New York that is stuffed with all manner of magical, religious, mystic, horror and fantasy creatures desperately trying to get accepted as equal American citizens. The show is a wicked satire. Each episode is sick. Beside the obnoxious art style that tries to gross you out half the time it seems nothing is sacred and immune to getting ridiculed. Each episode is twenty minutes of punch lines. “Comedy Central” are being pretty cool guys as usual.

The Ducas

A while back I mentioned I had trouble reading the big heavy tomes of fantasy on which Rothfuss managed to hook me But Parker on the other hand almost made me call quits. “Devices and Desires” (first of the Engineer Trilogy)* and I led a strange relationship. It might be the book that took me longest to finish because I read it with brakes several months in between in the course of a year. The first half almost lost me due to long expositions and treatises on hunting, fencing or engineering. Later everything starts unfolding at rapid pace. I even came to enjoy some of hunting and fencing parts though the engineering ones were a bit obscure maybe because of the terminology. But all in all the book is an amazing start to a trilogy I want to finish as much as the Kingslayer one and I see there was not a faster way for the plot to thicken and I am proud to have managed to get to the delicious nut behind the thick shell.

*Click that extraordinary long link to check the free extracts and check the resumes if you wonder about the story. Gosh, ain’t I a stinker!