Monday, August 23, 2010

The Crawling Eye Vs. Fugitive Alien II

* = Marvel may pump out more 'Teaser Images', but DC just does it better. This is fantastic.

We were in “The Cloud” this weekend for the celebration of our niece’s birthday. I find it incredibly surreal to see her and her brother growing up. They’ve become little people in a way that is fascinating. It’s comical, but she’s become this little ‘hand on her hips’ diva that can be a little bully, while at the same time be so endearing. I tried to take a nap at my In-Laws Friday upon our arrival only to be swarmed by her and her brother who just used me as a human couch. It was this strange “pay attention to me” behavior wrapped in a bizarre “because your our uncle” package. It’s disconcerting; I feel this distant and yet distinct connection to them.

I think that’s something that has been bothersome to me of late. I feel disconnected to everything and everyone. I know I sometimes expound at length on that idea of “all alone together” that my father has often spoke of, but until recently I only had a peripheral feeling of it, now I strangely feel like I’m drowning it. That internal dialogue that we all have has picked up to a din, and within that ‘noise’ is voice that is undermining me. Constantly calling into question my sense of self worth, my dedication to anyone and everything, as well as trying to topple this very heartily crafted sense of self I have developed. It’s bizarrely like having your ego under siege by unseen forces within yourself. I’m not sure why or even when it’s started, but it’s put me in a place mentally I’m unfamiliar with and puzzled on how to extricate myself from. I don’t feel depressed, nor do I think I’m ‘mad’, but I am definitely off-kilter in some fundamental way. It makes it even more distressing that mental illness runs so prevalently throughout my family. I have to find a way to slow or stop this slow erosion of ‘me’.


Anywho, it was a good trip to “The Cloud”. In addition we were able to finally get our new furniture into the basement this weekend. I’m not sure we’d get much accomplished without the help of Cassandra’s parents. It’s frustrating to have to ask for and accept help from others; it makes you feel constantly in someone’s debt. It has however dulled the frustration at the dissolution of my own family. It really does help remind me that one can have a family that is functional.

Sunday I was sick. I’m not sure if it was something I ate, or drank, or just a bug I picked up, but I spent a lot, and I mean A LOT of time, in the bathroom. It was not fun. It did however afford me the time to watch some more Hammer Films;
- Curse Of The Mummy’s Tomb (**** ½ out of 5) – I thought it was going to be nigh impossible to even touch Hammer’s original Mummy film, especially knowing that there was NO Peter Cushing or Christopher Lee in the sequel, but I was wrong. Horribly wrong. This movie doesn’t have the two tour de force performances of the first film; instead it has a very interesting story with a bit of a twist, which is highly inventive. I won’t spoil it for you, but it makes the ‘villain’ of the piece both sympathetic and simultaneously revolting. I have yet to watch the remaining Hammer Mummy movies because I just KNOW they will not come close to these two flicks. Great movies both.
- Curse Of Frankenstein (*** ½ out of 5) – After immersing myself in Hammer’s Dracula and Mummy flicks I took my first, if you don’t count watching them as a kid, foray into their version of Frankenstein. I have to say if your looking for a ‘monster’ movie, you’ll not really find it here. The monster gets second, or even third billing at best. Which was slightly disappointing as I really do enjoy what Christopher Lee can do with just facial expressions. However, I was completely compelled and blown away by Peter Cushing’s INSANE Dr. Frankenstein, he really put the vile in villain. It’s sort of a shock to see the man I most associate with playing Sherlock Holmes & Van Helsing play such a rat bastard of a villain. It doesn’t have the cool conniving vibe of his Grand Moff Tarkin from Star Wars Episode IV: A New Hope (***** out of 5), but instead it has this hyper-intelligent, manic glee to it that makes his cool detachment to the human condition very frightening.
- Revenge Of Frankenstein (**** out of 5) – Where the first movie sets the tone, the sequel explains how the “good” Doctor escapes certain death at the end of the first film to restart his work. This to me had the best supporting cast of all the Frankenstein films, yet did really feel like the middle chapter of a trilogy, meaning you sort of knew there would be little to no lasting consequences for the Doctor’s forays into committing abominations against Gawd.
- Frankenstein Must Be Destroyed (**** out of 5) – All of the above being said, this finally brings Cushing’s Dr. Frankenstein atrocities to a fitting close. I wasn’t as keen on the story here, or the supporting actors, who weren’t that good, but this film has a spark to it that is hard to ignore. You have Dr. Frankenstein pulling out all the stops, being a total bastard, and in the end confronting his own handiwork in a no win situation. Overall these films are very bleak with Frankenstein, the villain, being the main character. You can understand his desire to push the boundaries of science, while simultaneously loath his methods. Peter Cushing is just mesmerizing as Dr. Frankenstein. This is a trilogy worth your time.
- Horror Of Frankenstein (** ½ out of 5) – So Hammer decided to ‘re-boot’ their franchise here sans Cushing & Lee. Which is a shame since I really would have liked to see Christopher Lee take a turn at playing Dr. Frankenstein. Instead we see a young Victor Frankenstein played by Ralph Bates. Now Bates isn’t a horrible actor, but he is NOT Peter Cushing nor is he even Christopher Lee. His Dr. Frankenstein isn’t remotely menacing, frightening, or even charismatic he’s just smarmy. The decision to go back and re-start the story with a younger actor doesn’t work for me, the story becomes stilted and lazy, the acting doesn’t have the gravitas that the other Hammer films bring to the table, and while the sexuality is ramped up and the women are great to look at, it doesn’t make up for the lack of spark that this movie has.
- Taste The Blood Of Dracula (*** ½ out of 5) – Just as I bash on Ralph Bates as Dr. Frankenstein I’ll simultaneously praise him in his bit part in this Dracula flick. The best thing Hammer did in this series is KEEP Christopher Lee as the Prince Of Darkness. I was very interested in how they’d bring Dracula back after the last death, but the way they did it was creepy and inventive. Overall the creepiness, and I don’t mean spider-webs or coffins, I mean real world creepiness; abusive fathers, debauchery, cults, & the crazy rich. This makes sure that when Dracula finally shows up it’s less of a battle between Good & Evil, instead it’s more a battle of True Evil Vs. Evil, Vs. Decent. In the end this movie just makes me want to see yet another Christopher Lee as Dracula flick, luckily that’s just what I plan on doing…

How about we finish up with some


- Upon subscribing to and reading constantly every thread on Board Game Geek regarding Castle Ravenloft I’ve come to a conclusion; all geeks bitch about all things. When people who have yet to play the game, or even have the components in hand take the time to complain about the color of the cards, or the lack of fancy Fantasy Flight Games quality art I think these folks have entirely too much time. I don’t buy a game because it looks pretty. I buy a game because it plays well, I can play it with friends, and I can play it over and over again. This game has it in spades. I am really enjoying and finding it fascinating to read the battle reports from a group in Australia that has their copy and is playing it often. I know some of the Board Game Group are frowning upon my giddy joy over this game, not so much in a piss on my parade way, but more of a realistic view point. I’m hoping they are W-R-O-N-G-! Gawds I want this game and I want it to ROCK!
- Steak chili is on the agenda tonight and just thinking of it makes my mouth water.
- Cassandra has discovered & SEEN a clip of a 2nd Season of THE LEAGUE! That's right Dave, it's back! Let your tears of joy start.
- Appropriate, no. Really, really funny, YUP;

I had a lot more typed, but my ‘puter ate it. * Sigh * I think that might be a perfect place for me to stop then…

“Born with a moustache and a supernova, tossed off the cliffs of Dover.
Washed up on a far away shore in the arms of the daughter of the Buffalo.
Mamma said he was the chosen one. Reverend said he was the other one.
All that pay no mind inside his Econoline.

Swallower of Planets, the profits of doom.
Quarterly projections, the profits of doom.

A caliph, rabbi, and a bishop walk into a bar.
One says to the other,
“Hey now brother, we haven't gotten very far.”

Who's the writing? John the Revelator.
He wrote the Book of the 7th Seal.

Swallower of Planets, the profits of doom.
Quarterly projections, the profits of doom.

Genesis and Exodus, Leviticus and Numbers,
Gideon is knocking in your hotel while you slumber.

Swallower of Planets, the profits of doom.

Never trust the white man driving the black van
He's just saving all his voodoo for you.
Just for you.

Never trust the white man driving the black van
He's just saving all his voodoo for you.
Just for you.”

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