Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Interspecies Interactions & That Big-Ass Ship in the Harbor

I've noticed a family of 7-8 large, plump, glossy crows feeding every evening outside my window at work- they've recently been joined by a young squirrel who forages in the same 50 square foot area. The most entertaining aspect of this is watching the crows observe the squirrel finding something, one will walk over to investigate, and the squirrel gets very vocal and aggressive and chases the crow away. This goes on until the crows kind of give up, move away, but still keep an eye on the squirrel.

Last Friday, I was treated to the fabulous sight of a ginormous cruise ship sitting in New London Harbor as I drove in to work. I thought I was seeing buildings I hadn't noticed before, and then I realized it was a ship- amazing piece of engineering. I'm sure the equally ginornmous swan defending the public beach from the daily onslaught of children was similarly impressed.

Re: Kate the Great 'tagging' me, some little-known facts about me - some may even be true:

1. If I could stomach removing organs from corpses, I'd be a forensic toxicologist.
2. I've taken many hours of flying lessons but have not obtained my pilot's license.
3. My favorite two cities in the world are Montreal and Edinburgh.
4. I love the ocean.
5. My first job was grinding glass pieces for a stained glass artist.
6. My love of the visual arts was cemented by viewing the Winged Victory of Samothrace at the Louvre. To this day, I can recall the room, the sculpture, the temperature and the smell.

Congrats to the joey Zone for participating in the Mystic Seaport Dick-a-thon!
Moby Dickathon, that is....

Monday, July 14, 2008

Completely Opinionated Reviews- Summer Movies Thus Far....

Wow, this summer has got to be the best movie summer in a long time! So many movies, so little time! Oh, some spoilers may rear their ugly heads.

So far, we've only seen three: Kung Fu Panda, Wanted and Hellboy II: The Golden Army.

All three were action-packed, fun movies: KFP had some really gorgeous animation, starting with the opening credits. The message of the movie was 'be who are you are and do your best', which is not bad in my books - there were some very funny scenes & there was a lot more action than I had thought there would be. Definitely enjoyable.

Wanted had some excellent, jaw-dropping, effects, the very hot James McEvoy & Angelina Jolie, and Morgan Freeman dropping the 'mf' bomb- that alone was pretty much worth the price of admission. The plot of the movie wasn't exactly mind-blowing, but it was enough to thread together the action and really, that's all we wanted out of this movie (Jv10X said he'd be happy to watch two hours of Angelina Jolie just standing in front of a camera for two hours....so he was happy she walked and talked.)

Ok, on to HBII - totally disappointing. I can't even believe the same director worked on both HB movies. The plot was some tired Otherworld Beings vs. Humans Fucking up the Planet that has been done over...and over...and over. Yawn. The make-up was shot poorly and very, very obvious. Disturbingly so. Any cool monsters and scenes seemed as though they were cobbled together from Lord of the Rings, Empire Strikes Back and X-Men leftovers - plus, the old 'we're freaks & people don't like us' (um, X-Men, anyone?) thing they tried to unsuccessfully insert in the movie as well as all the lovey-dovey/sacrifice yourself for a loved one/babies on the way bits were boring at best. I couldn't believe I was bored- I thought perhaps I had over-romanticized the first movie, but I was lucky enough to see it on the telly several hours later after seeing HB II in the theater. Hands down, the first movie was far, far better, both visually and story-wise. And the weak Parthian shot at the end spoken by the ectoplasma guy I believe was written by the 12 year old in the front row at the theater. The action scene near the end of the movie as well as the locker room scene (heh heh) were pretty much the best bits. And why is Selma Blair even in the movie? Who the hell knows- she's on fire twice (literally) and has a coupla mopey lines. And Jeffrey Tambor, instead of being the glorious asshole Manning that he was in HBI, was just a whiny wuss. No reason for him to be in the movie, either. All in all, I think HBI was made for the fans and HBII tried to hard to appeal to everyone. Don't try so hard next time!