The Off-Season

Everyone has their things.. Most recently my “thing” has been Thunder basketball. I’ve been following the team since we adopted them in 2008, but it seems my obsession grows every season. By 2013 I will have lost all my jobs due to my unwillingness to do anything non-Thunder related and will probably end up in jail for trying to cut a lock of James Harden’s beard.

Okay, probably not.. but maybe.

I could write volumes about the basketball team that feels more like close friends than NBA superstars (and I probably will), but for now, let’s discuss some of my other “things”. After all, I’ve gotta find something to shake off the post season blues.

Movies
I enjoy movies. This should be no surprise if you’ve looked at my blog for longer than 10 seconds.
I’ll admit that lack of money, multiple jobs and Kevin Durant and friends have kept me from the theater more than I should’ve allowed them to, but I’m certainly making up for it now. Since the break (which began ten days ago), I’ve seen eight movies.

Bridesmaids: 7.5/10

  • As far as recent comedies go, this is one of the better ones.  Kristin Wiig has fantastic comedic timing which places her is a very short list of actresses that consistently make me LOL. (Tina Fey, Anna Faris and Kristin Wiig.. That is all.) It’s a little more drawn out that “male” comedies, but enjoyable for both sexes.

Rio: 7/10

  • It was cute and fun. It’s not going to pull on your heartstrings like Pixar movies generally do, but it’s a good family movie that delivers a few solid laughs. The best part – Nigel’s Song.  That opinion may or not be based on the fact that Nigel is voiced by my love, Jemaine Clement, and has a very Flight of the Conchords-esque feel to it.

Thor: 7/10

  • I never got into Thor as a kid, so I didn’t have any kind of nostalgia to help/hinder my views of the movie. I have no idea if it stayed true the original comics, but it made for a decent movie. I feel like it lacked some vital character development, but it was definitely entertaining. Am I the only one who’s favorite character was Idris Elba’s Heimdall? Random choice, I know. Also, much like Hugh Jackman as Wolverine, I only find Chris Hemsworth sexy when he’s playing Thor.. Just so you know.

Full Speed or Nothing: (Student Film) 8/10 vs. other student films | 5/10 vs. big budget films

  •  I’m no expert on student films. I’ve never even taken a film class. My experience is limited to what I catch at deadCENTER each year. This is a film I caught due to an invite from a friend who knew a few people in the production. Don’t let the awful poster and the even more horrendous trailer fool you – Full Speed or Nothing was actually good.. impressively good. My friends and I got a handful of full-bellied laughs, which is more that I can say for most of the big budget comedies I see. Jason Gwynn’s character, Snake, and Zane LaRue’s performance as Freedom Freddy were outright hilarious. In the Q&A after the screening, writer/director/actor Jason Gwynn admitted many of the flaws that bothered me, but rebuttled, “..But hey, it’s fun, right?” Yes, it was. Jason still has a long way to go, but the raw talent is there. I think this kid could really become something big if he choses to.

X-Men: First Class: 9/10

  • I did grow up watching and reading the X-Men series, and with the reviews coming back fresh, I had pretty big expectations walking in. Fortunately, I wasn’t let down. No, they didn’t follow the comics, but it really doesn’t matter. X-Men: First Class is an all around solid movie – visually beautiful, impressively well-written and masterfully acted. It may be the best movie I’ve seen this year. If it has one flaw, it’s that Michael Fassbender looks distractingly like Jon Hamm.. On second thought, that’s more of a bonus than a flaw. Carry on.

In A Better World: 8/10

  • This film won the Academy Award for Best Foreign Film last year, so naturally when it finally made it’s way to the local AMC, I had to see it. Although it was very good, I was slightly disappointed in it. I guess I was expecting something mind blowing.. What I got was something well-acted, well-written and mostly depressing. My mind is still intact.
    The good: The acting by these children was spectacular!
    The bad: It came off (at least to me) almost too heavy-handed about bullying.

The Beaver: 5/10

  • I’ve already gone on record saying that The Beaver looked bizarre and uninteresting to me. That didn’t really change, but in the middle of a movie marathon, you have to go with what times out correctly, thus I saw it. A day later and I’m still not sure what to say about it. As a movie with the plot of a schizophrenic man who uses a Brit-accented beaver puppet to communicate with his family, it can only go two ways:
    1. Powerful and moving.
    2. Completely ridiculous and funny for all the wrong reasons.
    I still don’t know which of those two ways it went.. I lean toward the latter for a few reasons. First of all, I didn’t care about anyone in the movie. I never connected with any of them. Second, in a scene when Mel Gibson’s beaver-puppeted hand attacks the rest of his body, I turned to my friend and asked if I was supposed to be laughing. This is never a question you should have to ask. I’ll give it an A for effort on trying to be powerful and moving, but it didn’t work. On a positive note, Mel did very well although it was difficult to not focus on he’s little beaver friend. With all the controversy, I kind of forgot that that guy can act.

YellowBrickRoad: 2/10

  • What a waste of a concept. In 1940, an entire city of people walked up a trail and into the woods. They were later found slaughtered – every single one of them. In 2008, a team travels the same path to try to discover what happened to the town. Intriguing enough. The problem lies in the fact that that question never gets answer. No questions get answered at all.. Some aren’t even asked when they clearly should be. In an effort to be psychological, it becomes what feels like hours of rambling and and no forward motion whatsoever. It’s exhausting to watch, honestly.
    I love that AMC has decided to bring in monthly midnight indie horror films, but for the love of God, I hope they can get some higher caliber stuff or I’ll be skipping.

Other upcoming must-see movies:
Super 8
Winnie the Pooh
Captain America: The First Avenger
Crazy, Stupid, Love
Fright Night

Television
Yet another “thing” that shouldn’t be surprising. We’ve done well catching up on shows in the off-season, but we still have a long list of ones we’ve yet to get to.

  • Is anyone watching The Killing on AMC? We’re loving it! Of course, the revel could make it or break it, but for now, we’re enjoying the ride.
  • Also, we’re 2 episodes into Justified. I’ve got to admit, I’m not overly impressed yet. I can tell it’s a quality production, but I’m not hooked. Maybe it’s a slow burn. Can someone confirm or deny? I’ve only heard good things about it.
  • We’re officially caught up on Modern Family. Best comedy on TV right now, hands down.
  • Breaking Bad and Sons of Anarchy gearing up for new seasons. Boner.

Yep, those two things along with four jobs, my new healthy lifestyle and my compulsive list making ought to get me through the next few months.

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