Sunday, September 16, 2012

coming back again


So... its been almost a month since I've written down anything on this here blog site.  As I near 900 posts, at first I wanted to ensure that something fun and cool was written for that, by my standards, momentous occasion... then I just stopped doing anything blogworthy.

Well, that's not entirely true... I thought of several things I could have told you in the month between then and now... I just never got around to writing it down.  So what have I been doing?   Well, not counting working for The Most Caffeinated Place on the Planet... and taking my what-seems-like 50 vacation days one or two at a time... and when its my turn to do so, taking care of this guy... 

See, on days off when I have to keep young Campbell Isaiah here at The Cabana, there isn't alot I can do without taking my eyes off of him.  Sure, he'll stay in his little jumparoo bouncy thing, for a little while, and he might sit in his playpen, for an even littler while, but right now, the young man wants to crawl.  And if you don't give him that chance, he then decides to let you know all about his displeasure.

Wanting to crawl is kind of a misnomer... he has two goals in his young life, not counting hitting the bottle and taking a slam in his Pampers... those goals are (1) standing and (2) putting his mouth on whatever is directly in front of him when he gets to his feet.  And I mean what-ever is in front of him.  Couch?  Legs of the dining room chair?  The pedestal to the recliner?  The wall?  Your knee?  Whatever is in front of him he puts his mouth on. 

Of course, the crawling and attempting to stand is truly means to an end... walking.  My mama told me the other day that I only crawled long enough to learn how to walk, and I would expect the same out of Camp Iz as well.  And I would imagine he'll do it soon.

The whole point in saying all that is to let you know that over the last month, I've watched a lot of movies... and I mean, a whole lotta movies... many times, while watching Camp Iz, I will turn on Dish Channel 300, which is HBO, and scroll forward to about 390, which encompasses a bunch of HBOs, several Cinemaxes, a handful of Showtimes and The Movie Channels, a boatload of Starz & Encore channels, and a dozen or so movie channels--Sony, Epix 1, 2 & 3, MGM, Universal HD to name a few--that I never knew existed until we got satellite. 

And sometimes I just turn on the TV, and if a movie is coming on, I just watch it.  Which is how I found myself watching Minka Kelly and Leighton Meester in "The Roommate" from 2011.  When the trailer for this movie would appear before features at the theater, The Lovely Steph Leann would comment, "I liked this idea better when it was called 'Single White Female'"

To say this is an understatement is an understatement... to refresh your memory, "Single White Female" is a creepy movie from 1992 that casts Bridget Fonda as Allie, a software designer (a "software designer" in movies in the early 90s is pretty funny when seen now) who has just broken things off with her fiance (Steven Weber) for cheating, and is now forced to find a roommate.

Hedy responds, and moves in, and they become friends.  But as the course of the movie rolls along, we see how disturbed and, for lack of a better word, how Bat Guano crazy Hedy is, as she becomes obsessed with Allie's live, imitating everything from her haircut to her clothes to trying to get rid of the other people in Allie's life so as to keep her all to herself. 

"Single White Female" is not a particularly great movie by any stretch, but what makes this movie is Jennifer Jason Leigh, who plays Hedy.  Jenn Jay Leigh is absolutely brilliant in her psychotic behavior, making her a classic, completely despicable villain.  If you only watch it for Hedy, its worth at least once viewing... it is Rated R for violence, some gettin' it on scenes and language.

However, "The Roommate" makes "Single White Female" look nothing short of "The Shawshank Redemption".  It's not even so bad its good... its so bad, its really, really, reeeeeeally bad.

Its been called an "unofficial remake" of the aforementioned film, but its very poorly done.  Minka Kelly plays Sara, who is starting her freshman year in college, and ends up with Rebecca (Leighton Meester) as her roommate... well, you know where this is going.  Rebecca, who has no friends because she's freaking weird and unlikable, clongs onto Sara with obsessive abandon to the point of hurting and even murdering those around Sara who Rebecca deems as "competition" for her attention and she is crazy and blah blah blah blah blah...

... I found myself kinda wishing that Rebecca would blow up the dorm with everyone inside, then maybe throw herself off a cliff.  The movie was silly, not suspenseful in any way, the acting was over the top, hammy and just plain bad, and none of the characters were engaging enough to draw any concern over their well being. 

The movie is just bad.  Granted, I've seen worse... in thinking through the topic of "Worst movie I've ever seen", the film "Superman IV:  The Quest for Peace" keeps coming to mind, followed by "The Janky Promoters", starring Ice Cube, Mike Epps and rapper Young Juc... but that's another topic.

In addition to torturing myself over bad films that I'm too lazy to get up and grab the remote across the room in order to change the channel (Run on sentence, aisle 5!), I've managed to knock out a book or two here and there. 

I knocked out "The Lincoln Lawyer" by Michael Connelly in two days... because it was just that good. It was better than I'd say anything John Grisham has written in at least ten years. The movie, starring Dave Wooderson Matthew McConaughey as Mickey Haller, came out a few years back, and is a decent watch--a defense attorney who is skilled enough to routinely get scumbags out of jail and either reduced or flat out dropped charges for their crimes, is met with what seems like a big payday when a rich kid (Ryan Phillippe) accused of beating and raping a chick hires him based on his reputation of success.

Also starring Frances Fisher (Rose's mom on the "Titanic"), William H. Macy as a grizzled private eye, Marisa Tomei (who is always welcome onscreen) and a great turn by country singer Trace Adkins as the leader of a biker gang who Mickey helps, while getting paid under the table... its Rated R for language and violence... anyway, the movie is pretty good and very rewatchable.

The book is also a great read, and mirrors the movie almost entirely, save for a few characters that have different backstories... the main difference is the ending.  The book takes the ending (and effectively, the continuation of the story) in a completely different direction, though I have to say both the book and movie endings are extremely satisfying. 

By the way, when I started this post, I had no clue I would end up on McConaughey and "The Roommate"... sometimes that's just where it goes, I guess.

See you soon--before 30 days, I promise.

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