BEST FILM OF 2014 (That I’ve seen thus far)

Okay so I’ve seen two movies in January thus far* (three if you count Frozen in 3-D).  One was American Hustle which is a 2013 film and in my top five films of 2013.  Funny.  And I have to say I finally understand why people talk about Jennifer Lawrence as an actress.

I saw Jack Ryan Shadow Recruit and it’s not awful.  It’s the best film of 2014* (of 2014 releases that I’ve seen thus far).  It’s also the worst film of 2014* (of 2014 releases that I’ve seen thus far).  Premise was way too familiar.

  1. Jack Ryan Shadow Recruit

2013 Films in Review

This sounds excessive:  I saw 44 films this year.  Or rather, I made a list of films from 2013 I saw this year.  This isn’t including the films from other years I saw this year, with the notable exception of Jurassic Park 3-D which I saw in the theatre and I feel the 3-D was a significant change.  Some people disagree.  I didn’t include The Day of the Doctor although I did see it in a movie theatre.

1. Twelve Years a Slave  – this was a vividly painful film based on true events.  People should see it at least once. I have no plans on ever seeing it again.

2.  From Up on Poppy Hill – An animated film written by Miyazaki and directed by his son Goro.

3. Frozen – A computer animated film from Disney, featuring Broadway singing talent.

4. Monsters University – The latest Pixar animated film, prequel to Monsters, Inc.

5.  Pacific Rim – Man fights giant monsters in giant robots.  Boom!

6.  Jurassic Park (3D) – God creates dinosaurs.  God destroys dinosaurs, god creates man. Man creates dinosaurs, dinosaurs eat man…

7.  Saving Mr. Banks –  Walt Disney tries really hard to convince the author of Mary Poppins to be okay with her father and selling out.

8.  The Book Thief – A little girl in Nazi Germany learns how to read.

9.  Dallas Buyers Club – An unlikely hero for the early AIDS movement does everything he can to find medication that will help him survive.

10.  The Wind Rises – Hayao Miyazaki’s final film, tells the story of the designer of the Mitsubishi Zero fighter.

11.  Star Trek:  Into Darkness (3D) – You think you are safe.  Benedict Cumberbatch is going to wreck your life.

12. The World’s End – Let’s go out drinking but it seems like the people back home have been replaced with well behaved robots.  FIGHT!

13.  The Way, Way Back – This kid suffers through a really bad vacation.  But has a decent time working at a water park.

14.  The Kings of Summer – Some boys run off into the woods to live alone by their own rules.

15.  Philomena – A little old lady goes on a quest to try and find the son she was deprived by evil nuns.

16.  Now You See Me – An elaborate heist film using magic and slight of hand.

17.  The Hunger Games:  Catching Fire – Watch Peeta’s chin.

18.  The Hobbit:  Desolation of Smaug – Highframe rate 3D is weird to watch.  Also, it ends abruptly and the writing could be stronger.  The film really exists as a technology testbed.

19.  42 – Jackie Robinson becomes a Dodger and inspires everyone to be a better person.  Oh, and he’s a great baseball player too.

20.  August:  Osage County – Meryl Streep is on a bunch of pills and is super mean to her family.

21.  Percy Jackson:  Sea of Monsters – They gave me free popcorn and soda.  Also, a much better film than the one that came before it, almost restored the series to something resembling the books.  I enjoyed it.

22.  Elysium – Not as good as District 9 but I like stories where rich people live up in space.  Hoping for a decent Battle Angel Alita eventually.

23.  Blackfish – Orca have feelings.  Torturing orca is mean.

24.  Blue Jasmine – Woody Allen did Streetcar Named Desire

25.  World War Z – The book was better

26.  Remington and the Curse of the Zombadings – A super campy filipino gay zombie film.

27.  Starbuck – Surprise, you’re a father. To several hundred kids.

28.  Ender’s Game – The book was better

29.  Sapphires – Light fluff based on history.  A group of aboriginal girls go off to Vietnam to sing for the troops.

30.  Oz the Great and Powerful – Big fluff prequel to The Wizard of Oz.  Visually big, tepid plot.

31.  Thor:  The Dark World – I like Thor.  But I think he was more Thor in the first Thor.  Wasn’t awful, just didn’t have the same charm.

32.  Man of Steel – If you don’t like the whoosh of watching Superman fly, then you might be super freaking bored.

33.  Geography Club – This film probably should be ranked higher.  I’m over my hatred of Kevin Land, just had to read more of the books for that redemption.  I can safely recommend this for guys who think the boys in the trailer are cute.  In fact, I probably should revise this ranking.  Don’t have enough time to do it today though.

34.  The Incredible Burt Wonderstone – I remember the gag, but I don’t remember anything that makes me want to see this movie again.

35.  We’re the Millers – All I can see is the allergic reaction to the insect bite on the young lad’s scrotum.

36.  The Angel’s Share – Wasn’t bad.

37.  Beautiful Creatures – Could have been worse.

38.  The Spectacular Now – Why do people like this movie?  Bad things happen without consequence and that offends my sense of justice.

39.  Planes – I spent money on this.  That offends me.

40.  The Wolverine – I wish this movie had a plot twist and wasn’t so flipping predictable.

41.  The Lone Ranger – I wanted to like this movie, but they lost me in the big train sequence.

42.  Iron Man 3 (3D) – THIS MOVIE NEEDS MORE IRON MAN SUITS. Said nobody.

43.  Warm Bodies – This movie suffered from the attention brought to it from the author of the book.  Also, it’s just Romeo and Juliet with zombies.  But it’s not an awful film.

44.  The Mortal Instruments:  City of Bones – Did this film have any redeeming value?  Oh right, the annoying irish boy from Misfits.

45.  The Host – Hated this movie and I fell asleep in it.  Apparently didn’t sleep enough.

Book was better; Ender’s Game

First I want you to know that Orson Scott Card is a crazy man and I don’t know if he’s in on the joke or if he’s become the joke.  He’s Westboro Baptist Crazy.

Before I saw Ender’s Game I was struck by a simple truth that I was shocked that has never occurred to me:  that due to the limits of time, books are a super medium for storytelling. Continue reading “Book was better; Ender’s Game”

I’ve seen 30 movies in 2013: The Book Thief

Looks like I haven’t updated my 2013 Movie List in a while.  Fear not, there is a new addition:  The upcoming adaptation of the bestselling book with the same name, The Book Thief.  This past week has been mostly about The Book Thief for me, on Monday there was a pre-release screening as it has not opened yet (next week!  or the week after) and then an author event with Markus Zusak, and then a roundtable on Friday with Sophie Nélisse, Geoffrey Rush, Brian Percival and Markus Zusak.

I have ranked it #5, behind Jurassic Park in 3-D.  Some people have complained that I have included a twenty year old movie in my list of 2013 films.  It also disrupts the ranking as Jurassic Park is my favorite film directed by Spielberg. Continue reading “I’ve seen 30 movies in 2013: The Book Thief”

The new iPad Air will make your life better … or will it?

Hey people.  So it looks like the embargo against iPad Air reviews have lifted and internet journalists have been able to post their reviews of the new iPad Air that is available for sale this Friday.  There’s something I think you should know that will greatly effect the lives of anyone who is contemplating purchasing the new iPad Air. Continue reading “The new iPad Air will make your life better … or will it?”

The Fixya Report on Mobile Browsers

I am an iPhone user.  I use Safari on the iPhone.

This website, Fixya, has compiled a report on mobile browsers.  The top five I suppose browsers.  The Android Browser, Safari, Opera, Chrome, and Internet Explorer.

And of course, since I’m linking it, the iPhone came out on top.

I was confused because Stock Android outperformed Chrome.  I had heard good things about Chrome.  Maybe the only good thing about mobile Chrome is that it syncs with people who use desktop Chrome?  Which for me is one of the benefits of using mobile Safari.

Funny thing, this M7 co-processor

This is a post about the M7 co-processor that is one of the new features inside of the iPhone.  And while it’s not filled with anything more than anecdotal information so if you’re looking for graphics and charts, you won’t find them.

I noticed that somebody in my rss feed had a list of apps for us lucky iPhone 5s users that take advantage of the M7 motion co-processor.  Thought I might give one of the free pedometer apps a try.  When I installed it and opened it I was amused to see that it already had a step count in for today.  And yesterday.  And the day before. Continue reading “Funny thing, this M7 co-processor”

Aquaman! Quickly, talk to the fishes and SAVE THE WORLD. Justice League Volume 3: Throne of Atlantis

This is an embargoed review that should not be released before October 1, 2013.

I read a digital galley of Justice League Volume 3 “Throne of Atlantis.”  It’s probably the best / only story of Aquaman I’ve ever read.  Basically:  Aquaman and the Justice League try to prevent a war between Atlantis and the people on land.  It’s basically the plot of a Doctor Who episode, but instead of silurians we have (the mer people of Atlantis?).  You don’t need to have read Justice League Volume 2 or previous issues of Aquaman.

Overall I felt it was enjoyable, not very deep or probing.  Kind of like a summer super hero movie.  Recommended for fans of Aquaman, and the Justice League.

Speculative post on the new iPhone 5S after the launch of said phone but before I have seen it

I fear there is a problem with the internet.  This problem is that some people are getting paid.  I’m not getting paid for my opinions or to have an opinion.  Other people are and so sometimes what they say seems a bit suspect.  Or rather I warn you that a lot of what you read online is bullshit, much like what you see on telly.

Before the new iPhone 5S was announced it was a little amusing to hear people discuss things they didn’t know about or only suspected about.  And then after the announcement, there was further discussion about the phone, generally by people who didn’t actually have access to the phone or any reliable sources of information. Continue reading “Speculative post on the new iPhone 5S after the launch of said phone but before I have seen it”