• 10 Cloverfield Lane (2016)

    10 cloverfield laneIf you’ve seen Cloverfield, prepare to watch something slightly less seizure-inducing. This sort of, but not really, sequel takes place almost entirely in an underground bunker. Much of the psychological thrilling comes from the mystery of what could possibly be going on in the world above.

    The cast is pretty minimal and they all shine in their own ways. John Goodman is always so amazing and I love how his rage just takes off at any given time. The character he plays is mostly the bad guy, but you sympathize with his attempts to do the right thing.

    Mary Elizabeth Winstead plays the main character, who is thrust into one frightening situation after another. She’s the one who wants to know what’s out there and she’s not content to trust John Goodman’s explanation of the outside world’s demise.

    The payoff is the finale where our main character learns the truth and must accept the bittersweet future.

    While I think Cloverfield is a better overall package from start to finish, I do like that the camera is stable in this movie. The psychological drama mixed with mysterious tension keep the viewer hooked. I would definitely recommend this for a night in with some popcorn and Red Vines.


  • 11/22/63

    112263I’ve always found Stephen King to be an amazing writer. His ability to craft a story is like no other. From horror to sci-fi to any genre he feels like. After reading Under the Dome, I was really excited for the supposed 10-part series on CBS. Then it had to suck AND be super popular, so they made two more seasons of dreck. Thanks, CBS.

    It was with great apprehension that I approached the new Hulu series 11.22.63 based on the King novel. The plot is about a guy who is shown a portal by a friend that takes the traveler to 1960. The friend suggests they attempt to save Kennedy from the assassination in 1963. Well, the past don’t like to change too much, I reckon.

    I’m about half way through the 8-part series and it’s really good. Much better than I was expecting, and actually feels like a Stephen King story. James Franco and the rest of the cast is perfect.

    If you have Hulu and like Stephen King or rewriting history, you should check this out.


  • Shameless Self-Promotion

    About 11 years ago, I recorded a little album (or EP) worth of music that I dubbed “All Play, No Work”. I always liked the way it turned out, even though it was less than perfect in many respects.

    As an independent musician, I’ve been interested in getting my music on more platforms for greater exposure. After reading this article, I decided to try putting my music on various monetized platforms. It was meant to be an experiment to see how current digital music distribution platforms work. I’m not really interested in making money with it, but I am interested in how to publish music to various download/streaming sites. Since there has been much hubbub from artists like Taylor Swift and Thom Yorke about the lack of streaming revenue getting back to the artist, I’m curious how much streaming generates after every group involved takes its cut. That and it feels really wonderful to say: “I have an album on Spotify.”

    Without further ado, I give you “All Play, No Work“:

    iTunes

    Spotify

    Tidal

    Google Play

    Amazon


  • It’s March

    shamrockSpring is in the air and that means the weather is warming. No, I’m not going to launch into a rant about climate change. Suck it.

    The best things about this month include Shamrock Shakes, March Madness, and Lucky Lime Eeegee.

    Yesterday, I went to get my first Shamrock. I asked at the drive-thru to make sure they even had it. The response: “You already know it.”

    What? I already know it? OK, give me three, shit-biscuit.

    At the first window, the guy asks, “Do you really like the Shamrock Shake?” with a look of disbelief.

    “Yes.”

    “You really like it?”

    “Yes.”

    I pulled forward and got my shakes.

    I’m not enthusiastic about mint-flavored things, but this shake tastes good and you can only get it one month out of the year. Also, TRADITION! And, IRISH! (not really)


  • Deadpool (2016)

    deadpool-posterI think I read one of the Deadpool comics when I was a kid and reading some X-Men comics. I always thought it was just a rogue X-Person who sparred with Wolverine from time to time.

    This new movie takes the character to 11 and makes one helluva fun ride for viewers. It was like an ice-cold lemonade on a hot summer day: REFRESHING.

    The fact that is was rated R and full of violence and nudity was not the primary reason for its success. It has more to do with how people are getting tired of the same old superhero movies. Deadpool told a more human story of a man trying to survive with overwhelming circumstances. It didn’t feel like an origin story, even though it was.

    My only real criticism is that the writers tried to pack too many jokes into the movie. Some were great and random, others were too obvious and fell flat.

    My favorite part was how Deadpool kept leaving his important weaponry behind before big battles.


  • We’re Getting the Band Back Together

    The tacos have been gone for far too long. Well, they were never really “gone” per se. More like they were left for dead on the side of the road. The rescue helicopter is here to save the day and the tacos will rise from the ashes like a tasty Mexican phoenix entree.

    I’m so happy it’s like a wedding. There will be games and prizes and special events. There may even be some old favorites returning from the graveyard that is Stemshul’s old Gateway computer.

    This time around, we have new technology. We have rebuilt “him” better than before. While “he” will never be worth 6 million dollars, that’s not why we do this. We do it for the love of the game.

    This is our return to innocence.