Tuesday, August 31, 2010

The Crawling Eye Vs. Track Of The Moon Beast

* = Great flick, now I should read the books...

Saturday morning I watched Twins Of Evil (**** out of 5), which is an old Hammer Films flick. I believe it’s one of the Karnstein Trilogy. I haven’t been able to find the other two parts; The Vampire Lovers & Lust For A Vampire. Although I had been able to find out that the first film was loosely based on the book Carmilla, which is supposedly pretty good if not a bit risqué. In addition I’ve read you can add Hammer’s Vampire Circus as a follow-up, and Captain Kronus: Vampire Hunter (**** out of 5) which has peripheral ties to the series. Being that this flick is the third part of the trilogy I was a bit confused about the Karnstein ‘legacy’ in the confines of the flicks. I knew that it was this family of treacherous individuals who dabbled in black magic and vampirism, so when the crap hits the fan in the flick I was sort of able to roll with it. I will say that Damien Thomas was outstanding as the evil Count Karnstein, he had just the right amount of arrogance and perpetual sneer. The two twins were serviceable. The main draw, as always, was Peter Cushing who DESTROYED as the fanatical puritan madman Gustav Weil! He was frightening, to be loathed, and yet by the end of the film you felt sympathy for what his misguided religious zealotry had cost him. This movie has me searching to grab the other parts of this series, this is what I’ve come to expect from Cushing/Lee era Hammer Films.

Sunday I took some time to start the Millennium Trilogy of films based on the three books of Stieg Larsson. I was blown away. The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo (***** out of 5) was outstanding. The pace of the film, the way that the characters and the story evolve apart before coming together half way through is outstanding. Let me state though if you don’t like reading you’ll hate these flicks, their in subtitles. If you have a queasy stomach then you’ll hate these movies, there are graphic depictions of brutality, rape, and murder most foul. This film reminds me, in a wonderful way, of how I felt watching Silence Of The Lambs (***** out of 5), the movie grabs you and shakes you mercilessly while leaving you enthralled. I have to say as well that the two main characters; Mikael Blomkvist, the noble and driven investigative journalist, & Lisbeth Salander, the severely damaged and tortured savant are mesmerizing as are the performers who inhabit the roles. Oh and before you just assume that Lisbeth is a ‘classic victim’, let me just state she is one of the strongest, nastiest, and inventive heroines I’ve seen in a flick in some time. The first film was so enjoyable I almost immediately popped in the sequel, The Girl Who Played With Fire (***** out of 5). It takes place about a year plus after the events of the first film. Without giving much away this film has to deal with the consequences of previous ‘sins’ and some of the floating threads left over from the first film. It wasn’t as ‘epic’ in scope as the first movie, but as I’ve read it was shot with a much smaller budget and for television. The same actors give great performances, and really draw you into their world, the story remains tight, and it again puts the main characters in parallels without having them directly interact until the climax, which is fascinatingly disconcerting. My only complaint is the ending. I won’t give it away, but it Empire Strikes Back’s (Infinite *’s out of 5) the HELL OUT OF YOU! I ran out of time so haven’t been able to get to the third flick, but I can’t wait. This has been a stellar series that I really hope Hollywood doesn’t completely ruin.

Although I’m pretty sure they will…

I’m concentrating on being positive today, so I’ll just wrap it up with some


- How does one exactly “hassle the ‘Hoff”?
- Dave hooked a brutha up with a pile of books Sunday night, including book three in the Dresden Files, Grave Peril. I started it Monday morning and as of leaving work today I’m a quarter of the way through. I’m shocked at the speed I devour these things, while being giddy about how much I enjoy them. Jim Butcher is quickly becoming the author’s whose books I don’t want to read, I HAVE TO!
- It’s day four of the use of the EZ-Cycle. Today I want to try and do 2 miles in 20 minutes.
- I’ve noticed I’m having these weird mental hiccups lately where I will sort of lose little expanses of time, or be unable to find a simple word or phrase. I’m currently chocking this up to a lack of good sleep, which is improving, but I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t a tad concerned.
- It’s strange but I’ve noticed I feel better & much fresher since again starting to exercise, even only at 20 minutes, daily. I’m hoping this is just a nice first step.
- We’re heading towards the beginning of the Marvel SAGA Campaign in a little over a week. I’m using a less prep intensive style as opposed to D&D, where I’ve been almost slavish to what I’ve written. Instead I’m going to try and leave it massively open, so I’m able to transition between each character and their side of the ‘world’. I really want to capture the Stan Lee Spider-Man vibe of the late 60’s when it comes to the character’s personal lives, while setting it in a modern, Pre-Civil War, Marvel Universe. So far only David has fully fleshed out his character, fascinatingly so, and has begun to build his supporting cast. I’m looking forward though to getting back into the quick play, anything can happen, imagination driven format of the SAGA rules after being knee deep in 4E. There is nothing wrong with the way 4E does combat, in fact it excels at it, but I find myself longing a bit to force the players to be imaginative, not just tactically, with their ‘powers’ and combat. I’m starting to build up some of Twin City’s villains, organizations, and plots so we can have some things that will be independent of the established Marvel U. I’m really looking forward to the change of pace this will provide quarterly.
- If they kill off Eric Northman on True Blood, I’ll be checking out with that show.
- Castle Ravenloft better ship today Amazon, otherwise I might cancel my order. This whole fiasco with the shipping date of this game has left a bitter taste in my mouth with Amazon. Other sites have shipped, as early as last Wed. night, game stores had it as early as Friday. People who didn’t pre-order in May are playing this game and I’m still waiting. I usually don’t like to bitch about things like this, but I’m really irritated. Oh and to Dave who is enjoying actively pissing in my cornflakes about my excitement over this game, screw you pal! I know it’s going to be good and your going to have to learn to love it.
- Watching James Toney get pummeled and tap out was pretty damn funny.
- There is the possibility of starting another D&D group with some younger folks, again once a month. I think if that happens I’ll run the Chaos Scar sandbox. I’ve already set it in my Known Worlds campaign setting as in the central of the area known as the Midlands. I wouldn’t have to prep much for any adventures; I could easily do one ‘module’ per setting. It might be fun to be someone young’s gateway into a hobby that’s done nothing but make me happy since middle school, sort of a nerdery mentorship.
- Some time this week I’m doing my FOOTBALL PICKS BOUND TO GO HORRIBLY WRONG!

Well hatin’ ain’t going to do itself…

“Baby get up off the floor
That man you're with
He ain't no innocent man
He's a killer child
I seen him rip apart a young girl
With his bare hands
Now I know you think you know just what you're doin'
You've been here time and time again before
But be careful with your heart
Cuz this things about to start
And its about to escalate into a war

25 contestants start the show
But only 1 will survive
It's not how you dance
It's who you know
Dance-A-Thon 2005
Dance-A-Thon 2005
Dance-A-Thon 2005

It's too hot
Too far apart
To understand the game
But when this thing is over child
Everybody here gonna' remember your name
Now baby shoot out all the lights
And bring those crazy judges down to their knees
'Cause they're watchin' you all night child
A distinguished panel of celebrities

25 contestants start the show
But only 1 will survive
It's not how you dance
It's who you know
Dance-A-Thon 2005
Dance-A-Thon 2005
Dance-A-Thon 2005
Dance-A-Thon 2005
Dance-A-Thon 2005

And I want to reach into the fire of your heart
And I want to program all those beats right from the start
Have you ever been to New York City?
New York City...”

* = Where does this wonderful piece of art take your imagination?

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