Saturday, August 27, 2005

Unseen Movie Reviews: Brothers Grimm

Normally, Brothers Grimm would be on my must-see list. It's directed by Terry Gilliam, one of my favorite directors. It's got the Brothers Grimm, whose fairy-tales I love. It's got that dark and twisted Tim Burton-feel. But I'm not gonna see it. Even though I like Matt Damon and Monica Bellucci, and freaky movies. My interest in this movie evaporated the minute I saw the trailer. It just doesn't look like it's very good. I thought it would be a biopic or I thought it would be like Shakespeare in Love with the Brothers encountering twisted elements of their stories. Looks more like Van Helsing. That kind of factual inaccuracy is not something I want to see. We're going to have a generation of kids who write book reports about how the Brothers Grimm killed vampires and ghosts before they wrote "Hansel and Gretel." I'm not saying it's a bad movie. It's just not my kind of movie. My rating: C-

Flashback Friday: Good Grief

There was once a TV show that was set in the unlikely location of a funeral home. The series revolved around family members who run the home who argue over how best to run the home, all the while getting involved in the wacky world of death. I know what you're thinking; you're talking about the hit HBO series, Six Feet Under. No, actually I'm talking about the TV show Good Grief. It came out in 1990 and starred Howie Mandel, for crying out loud. It was a straight-out comedy and the episodes were mainly about Howie's character doing inappropriate and wacky things. But I can't help wondering if the creators of Six Feet Under saw it. It's certainly a huge coincedence, otherwise.

There was a tribute written at Jump The Shark, which surprisingly argues it was a great show. There's also an episode guide that reminded me what a bizarre show this was. Check out some of the plot summaries. Seriously.

Surprisingly enough, some people do remember Good Grief and have made connections to it and Six Feet Under. Entertainment Weekly published an article on the similarities between the two series. One article claims there's a nod to Good Grief in the casting one of the lead actors from the show (Joel Brooks) as a florist in Six Feet Under.

Thursday, August 25, 2005

Bombing the Island

You ever see ads for a movie and go, "That looks interesting," but you don't end up going to see it. Then a few months later, you discover it was a massive bomb or a massive success, and you're like "Wow, didn't see that coming." That's how I felt when I read that the producers of The Island did an interview to explain why their movie bombed. I assumed it did well, but the reasons they give were pretty much my own for not going. Scarlett Johannsen gave her response to the producers blaming the movie's failure on her. Love a good celebrity dogfight.

GeekTalk: Anakin!

I don't think they did a good job on the progress of Anakin Skywalker to Darth Vader. In Episode I, Anakin was a cute little kid with an attitude. In Episode II, Anakin was an angry, arrogant teenager. I could see where Darth Vader could come from that. But in Episode III, Darth Vader was actually a pretty nice guy. He cared about Padme, whereas he looked like a stalker in Episode II. He didn't lose his temper much in III, where he always looked mad in II. He only complained a little bit about not being made a Master in the Jedi Council in II, and that seemed justified. He was even on the verge of arresting Palpatine for being a Sith Lord. Then suddenly, he's kneeling at the feet of Palpatine and killing little children. But he still sheds a tear.

And even that wasn't like Darth Vader in the old movies. Darth Vader in Episodes IV, V, and VI was an arrogant, confident, powerful warrior who was in complete control. He never said he embraced evil or had any kind of philosophy. He was just doing what had to be done. He was on the Dark Side, but he said it was because of the power, not because he wanted to save anyone's life or defend the Empire. Man, I wish we could get a do-over on the new movies. Maybe in 20 years, they'll do a remake of the whole Star Wars series, like they did a remake of The Longest Yard and Bad News Bears.

Hunting Season

This is exactly what's wrong with the world. States are rushing to ban Internet hunting, where someone can operate a rifle by remote control using their mouse and watching a camera with a webcam. Everyone is opposed to it, from the NRA to the Humane Society. They say it's cruel, slaughter, not real hunting.

I'm not even saying I support it. I think it's kind of stupid. There are videogames that do the same thing for cheaper. You wanna hunt virtual animals from the comfort of your computer? Fine, buy Deer Hunter. It also sounds pretty boring to sit there waiting for an animal dumb enough to wander in front of the camera. But there was exactly one website ( that provided this service, and only one person who's ever signed up for it, and Live-shot has switched to a virtual shooting range. It's not like there's a flood of Internet hunting sweeping the nation.

The fact is that it's something which gets major political groups upset, isn't that important, and has virtually no support on the other side. In other words, it's something a politician can go on television about and rant and rave, and look like he's doing something, and there's almost no chance he'll suffer in the polls because of it. Meanwhile, people are being starved or raped to death in Sudan, women and children are being sold into slavery, and poor people have to choose between buying their life-saving medication and paying the rent. Pick your targets.

Tuesday, August 23, 2005

Jokebook: Tofu Salad

A blonde walks into a store and says, "I'd like a tofu salad."

The guy behind the counter grumbles, "Dumb blonde."

The blonde says, "I resent that. If a brunette came in here and asked for a tofu salad, would you call her dumb?"

The guy says, "Yeah."

"Well," says the blonde, "If a redhead came in here and asked for a tofu salad, would you call her dumb?"

The guy says, "Yeah."

The blonde says, "Well, you're just the meanest man I've ever met. Why do you have to call anyone who comes in here and orders a tofu salad dumb?"

The guy says, "Because this is a hardware store."
Categories: comedy

Window Card Trick

Ever since I saw this done by David Blaine, I've been flummoxed. The magician asks someone to pick a card, then throws the deck at a nearby window. All the cards fall to the ground, except for the picked card, which is stuck to the inside of the window. How do you do this trick? Well, like everything else, it's on the Internet. And like all magic tricks, the explanation is ridiculously simple.

Mad-Scientist Disease

Some scientists in South Korea have successfully cloned a dog. By the way, when was the last time America announced they cloned the first something-or-other? South Korea is all over us on that. Frankly, though, I don't think this is a big deal. We've pretty much cracked the cloning barrier as far as I'm concerned. The days when we're all wide-eyed over the first cloned squid are over. You cloned another animal? Fine. Wake me up when you clone a dinosaur. As for people cloning their dogs, for the kind of money you spend on cloning your stupid dog, you could adopt an entire animal shelter. Losers.

But what I think is more interesting is that the next project the Koreans are going to tackle is creating a cow that's resistant to mad cow disease. First of all, we don't even understand mad-cow disease, so how can we make a cow resistant to it? Second, I'd rather they make humans mad cow disease resistant, not cattle. Third, wouldn't it be easier to just stop feeding the cows their own brains and spinal cords? This is the problem with genetic engineering. It's a solution looking for a problem.

Saturday, August 20, 2005

Am-Whore Alert

Every parent's worst nightmare is for their child to be missing, and be found dead. At least, it was. But now there's an even worse nightmare - your daughter is missing, and is found turning tricks. That's the nightmare of the Lillie family, who went through two days trying to find their missing daughter, Miya Lillie. They finally found her in California when her pictures showed up on an "escort service" website. That's right, she was a hooker. They found her, of course. At first, she claimed she was kidnapped and forced into the oldest profession, but eventually the truth came out. She's just a slut. Turns out she willingly prostituted herself on the streets of Chandler so she could earn enough money to make it to the big time - whoring herself out in California. I guess Kali has a stronger union. How'd you like to be there when that reunion takes place?

Wednesday, August 17, 2005

Fruit Buzz?!

You've probably seen the ads for McDonald's new Fruit and Walnut salad. Also known as a Waldorf salad. I find it condescending that they felt they had to simplify the name. Look at Jack-In-The-Box. They didn't call their new bread "puffy bread." They called it "ciabatta bread." We can handle "Waldorf Salad." It might actually teach people that other salads exist besides cherry tomatoes and iceberg lettuce.

What I don't get is why they felt the need to invent the idea of a "fruit buzz," some vaguely-described feeling you get when you eat fruit. I eat fruit all the time, and I don't get a "fruit buzz" or any other high from it, unless it's laced with cocaine. I suppose you could give them points for promoting fruit in general, but I think this is bound to lead to disappointment. People eat the salad and say, "Hey, there's no fruit buzz. I've been robbed. Never eat fruit again." Besides, there's not much fruit in the fruit and walnut salad to begin with. Wendy's has the real fruit buzz with their fruit bowl. Try again, Mickey D.

Plus, they cheated. They candy-coated the walnuts. Can't they have one thing on the menu that doesn't have sugar or fat on it?

These Butts Are Made For Watching

Speaking of slutty Simpson, we're not too far off. Have you seen the video for These Boots Are Made For Walking? Amazing. Her butt looks good, I'll say that. It's just not the kind that fills out short-shorts. That's why I wish Jessica wouldn't pretend she didn't use a double. Your butt is good, Jessica, but not that good. You still got a nice rack, and guys still want you, so don't worry about it.

Star magazine had an exhaustive study of Jessica's butt in the latest issue, which I need to examine in greater detail. I think this is the most attention ever given to a white girl's butt. Anyway, they concluded that the only photo Jessica has that has a round butt is the Dukes of Hazzard promo photo. They decided that she used a pair of spandex shorts that can pull it up. I don't think that's true, since she could've worn it in her Boots video and didn't. I think an even more likely scenario is that the photo is touched up or doctored.

Some Christian group called the Resistance wants Simpson to re-shoot the video, on the grounds that she's a minister's daughter and shouldn't be doing that sort of thing. Earth to Resistance - she's what's known as a hypocrite. She used her Christian upbringing to further her career, and dumped it as soon as she hit the big time. Good luck getting that genie back in the bottle.

And what kind of a name is the Resistance for a Christian group? That's more like a revolutionary group plotting to overthrow the government. Resisting what? The American government? 'Cause the Christians already own that.

Sunday, August 14, 2005

Flashback Friday: Dinosaurs Attack

I remember when I first saw them. I was in junior high and some kid had bought a pack of trading cards. I looked through them in amazement...they were called Dinosaurs Attack. They told the grisly tale of dinosaurs attacking Earth through a freak experiment. I loved the idea of dinosaurs attacking, since I was a big fan of sci-fi movies like Godzilla, but I'd never seen anything like these. The artwork was horrifying with people being eaten, torn apart, stabbed, and other nightmarish scenarios. I think at least some of my mental scars were caused by them.

Later on, I found out the cards were based on an older trading card series called Mars Attacks. It wasn't until I got on the Internet and found an archive of them that I finally understood Dinosaurs Attack. Of course, Mars Attacks is the inspiration the twisted Tim Burton movie of the same name.

Looking at the cards now, Dinosaurs Attack is pretty cheesy. The gore and violence is overdone, designed to be shocking without being really logical. I mean, not all dinoaurs are rampaging, man-eating horrors. Jurassic Park did a better job showing what would happen if dinosaurs and modern-day humans collided. And the research is sloppy. Trilobites were definitely not "flesh-eating worms."

Jokebook: Everywhere I Touch

This blonde walks into a doctor's office and says, "Doctor, you have to help me. Everywhere I touch, it hurts."

The doctor says, "That sounds pretty serious. Show me."

The blonde touches her hip and screams. The blonde touches her forehead and screams. The blonde touches her stomach and screams. Afterwards, she whimpers, "What is it, doctor? Am I going to die?"

The doctor says, "Calm down. Your hand is broken."
Categories: comedy


So I'm at an office party...okay, it was more like a potluck lunch...okay, it was more like a potluck lunch from another team that had leftovers, and no one was around. Anyway, so I'm at the table and I see a little plastic carton labeled "grapple." It's got apple slices in it or so I thought. I read the label and it basically praises the contents, which are a combination of apples and grapes. "They're apples that taste like grapes!" Well, with a pitch like that, I had to try one. And indeed, there was truth in advertising. It was indeed an apple that tasted like a grape.

Now, I can't speak for everyone. I know that. I don't know what goes on in your mind anymore than you know what goes on in mine. But I'm willing to bet that no one out there today, let alone throughout human history, has ever been eating an apple and said to themselves, "Mmm, this sure is good. But, you know, I could go for a grape right now. But I'm already eating this apple. If only this apple could taste like a grape." Likewise, I'm doubting anyone has ever munched on a handful of grapes and said, "You know, these grapes are really good. But if only I could push these grapes together into the shape and texture of an apple, then my life would be complete." No, I'm guessing someone who wanted an apple and a grape was capable of getting both. You could even eat them both at the same time to get the full effect. And yet, here it is. Behold, the grapple.

Now I can't say for sure if genetic engineering led to this miracle, but I'm willing to bet it did. And I think this is probably right up there with the glow-in-the-dark mouse as one of the most useless creations in biotech. I literally can't understand why anyone would devote time and energy to create a grapple. It's not like it even tastes that great. It tastes exactly like a grape, except it's in the shape of an apple. Once you had one, the novelty is gone, and I can't imagine buying it again, especially since apples and grapes are cheaper than "grapples." Maybe somebody out there can explain this to me, but I am baffled and somewhat annoyed by the grapple. If this is where the grand dream of genetic engineering is leading us to, I don't want it. Now if someone could come up with a way to combine all the major fruits into a single fruit with all the vitamins and great taste, then I'm all for it. I want an apple-grape-banana-orange-cherry-strawberry. Call it a strappananagerry or something.

Sunday, August 07, 2005

News Nuggets


A plane crashed in Canada, but all three hundred passengers and crew survived with only minor injuries. Afterwards, the survivors went home to find a card on their car windshield that asked "Have you ever been sick" with the address for the Limited Edition comic book store.

The Olympics dropped softball and baseball as sports in the upcoming games.
Some have accused the Olympics of anti-Americanism, particularly because the Olympics are also banning Mom and apple pie.

After his fight, a professional boxer was discovered to be HIV-positive. The incident caused an uproar over safety standards in the boxing industry. It's okay for two men to beat each other into unconsciousness and cause serious long-term brain damage, but heaven forbid they catch AIDS.

The US women's lacrosse team caused an uproar when they wore flip-flops to a meeting with President Bush. The incident led to many questions about etiquette and formal dress in America. But an even bigger question asked was, "What's lacrosse?"

Roman Polanski won a libel suit against a tabloid that claimed he flirted with a model on the way to his wife's funeral. Polanski said the story cast him as an unloving husband. Now he'll only be thought of as a fugitive convicted pedophile.

James Doohan, the actor who played Scottie the engineer on the TV series Star Trek, died. In honor of the Scottish heritage of his character, Star Trek fans all got drunk and cheap.

Lindsay Lohan collapsed during a workout at a gym. She's expected to recover. Apparently, a piece of food got into her mouth.

NASA crashed an object into a comet to judge the effects. NASA insisted there was no danger, despite naming it Operation Deep Impact, the title of a movie about a comet crashing into Earth and destroying all life.

Studies showed that long-term use of Viagra may cause blindness, but this news did not affect sales. Apparently, old men would rather be blind and happy.

See you next Tuesday.

Unseen Movie Review: Dukes of Hazzard

There are some movies that I am simply not going to see, but want to talk about. Those are my Unseen Movie Reviews.

If it wasn't for Jessica Simpson, nobody would've even mentioned the Dukes of Hazzard movie. It would've made the remake of Bewitched look like a media circus. The sad part is I actually loved Dukes of Hazzard and would've gone to see it if it looked even slightly good, and the promotion department had something else to talk about besides short-shorts. I thought Jessica was hot, but they over-promoted her, and her lying about using a butt double tells me she hasn't gotten any new brain cells lately. Just admit to the fact that one part of your body does not look good. It happens, Jessica. Your boobs more than make up for it. And Burt Reynolds as Boss Hogg? His last name is Hogg, he's supposed to be fat. I dunno. Just another bad TV remake. Haven't seen it, but give it a D. Hope it bombs and sends Jessica back into the media basement. On the plus side, if she and Nick breaking up, we won't have any more Nick and Jessica specials. Expect Jessica to disappear and re-surface with dyed black hair, nude photo spreads, and a slutty image ala' Cristina Aguilera. Well, we can only hope.

Jokebook: The Greatest Swordsman

A young man climbs a mountain to a ledge, where there sits an old man with a sword in his lap.

The young man says, "I seek the greatest swordsman in the world."

Without a word, the old man draws his sword and flicks it in the air at a passing fly. The fly falls to the ground in two pieces.

The young man says, "Surely you are the greatest swordsman in the world."

The old man says, "No. Further up the mountain is a swordsman greater than I."

So the young man climbs up the mountain to another ledge where there sits an even older man with a sword in his lap.

The young man says, "I seek the greatest swordsman in the world."

Without a word, the old man draws his sword and flicks it in the air at a passing fly. The fly falls to the ground in three pieces.

The young man says, "Surely you are the greatest swordsman in the world."

The old man says, "No. At the top of this mountain is the greatest swordsman."

So the young man climbs up to the top of the mountain, where there sits an even older man with a sword in his lap.

The young man says, "I seek the greatest swordsman in the world."

Without a word, the old man draws his sword and flicks it in the air at a passing fly. The fly buzzes away.

"What's going on," the young man yells. "I thought you were supposed to be the greatest swordsman in the world. You couldn't even kill that fly."

"No," the old man says. "That fly is not dead. But that fly will never again father children."

Thursday, August 04, 2005

Evil Clown Week

It's Clown Week, and to celebrate, we'll dwell on the scariest thing in the world according to Boris Karloff. Someone once asked him what the scariest thing was, and he said opening your front door at midnight, and there on the front step is a clown. I never had a fear of clowns until I saw Killer Clowns From Outer Space. I wouldn't run screaming from a clown if I saw one, but I agree that there's very little more disturbing than a scary-looking clown. Technically, if you're scared of clowns, you have coulrophobia. Lots of people have it, and there's a website called dedicated to the phobia with pictures, stories, T-shirts, and support info. Personally, I don't hate clowns, I think they can be funny. But the website makes some good points.

World's Toughest Grandpa

You think you're tough? You think you're bad-axe? Well, you're nothing compared to Daniel M’Mburugu in Kenya. He was attacked by a wild leopard. He had no weapons of any kind. So he reached into the animal's open mouth and ripped out its tongue! He killed it with his bare hands! I didn't even know you could kill a leopard by ripping out its tongue. Maybe it choked to death on its own blood. Even if it didn't kill the leopard, reaching into its mouth alone gives him cajones of titanium. And if that doesn't make you feel small, think about this; he was seventy-three. I don't know about you, but that makes Arnold Schwarzenegger and that guy who cut his own arm off sound like little girls. I'll bet that guy was splitting logs with his eyebrows in his twenties. How'd you like to be that kid's grandson at Show-and-Tell? "And this is the tongue my grandpa tore out of a leopard's mouth...with his bare hands...and killed it!"

Monday, August 01, 2005

Close the Door

What's up with guys hitting the "close door" button on elevators? I'm not saying there's not a time for hitting that button, like if you get on the elevator and you're the only one getting on. Yeah, fine. Or maybe the door opens and you look outside and there's no one there. Go for it. But now that I've started working in an office building, I see what I consider abuse of the "close" button. I see guys get on and hit the close button without even glancing back to see if anyone else is following them. I've seen people get off at a floor, and some guy still on the elevator immediately hits the close button. Doesn't even look out. He's assuming that nobody else is waiting to get on. Or maybe he doesn't care. More likely the latter.

I've even seen a guy hit the open button as the elevator gets to his floor. I hate to tell the guy, but elevators open the doors on their own. That's what they do. Like if he didn't hit the "open" button, the elevator would just sit there, trapping us all inside forever.

The last straw was today, the second time I almost got crushed in the doors because some idiot hit the "close" button right as I was stepping through them to get on. This time, the guy gave me a "sorry, bud" that sounded completely insincere. "Sorry I almost crushed you, bud. Won't try to kill you again." But the first time, I'm pretty sure the girls getting on saw me coming. Like they didn't want me to get on. Nice try, but I was too quick for 'em.

Is this where America has gotten as a society? That we can't wait the full five seconds for elevator doors to close? I'd like to know exactly what people are doing where that five seconds would make a difference. Unbelievable. Just let the doors open and close, people. I'm sure a lot of engineers spent a lot of time and energy designing elevators so they open and close on their own. Maybe we should go back to the days where guys sit on the little stool to open and close the doors manually. But these days, they'd probably get beaten up for not doing it fast enough. We'd have "elevator rage."

Wacko Wonka

There's a lot of controversy over whether the new Willy Wonka is based on Michael Jackson. I thought of Jackson the minute I saw Depp in the trailers. Of course, Depp denies it. After seeing the movie, I do think the look was based on Jacko with the white makeup, outlandish clothing, and childish mannerisms. Maybe the voice is his, too, because it's high and childish. But the new Wonka doesn't sing or dance, and hates children. I actually thought he was more like Jim Carrey in The Mask with his voice and extreme gestures. And the part where Wonka bends over and starts singing the Oompa-Loompa song with his butt was a dead giveaway. Just kidding.