Sunday, February 07, 2016

Song of the Week: "That's the Way of the World"

Earth, Wind & Fire have only made one other appearance on Song of the Week, which is an oversight, because I love soul music, especially on a Sunday morning. (That time, back in 2013, was my favorite of theirs, "Fantasy," which Roger posted about yesterday.) So here's another song that make me feel good, from 1975. RIP Maurice White.

Snow Speeder

I shared these on my Facebook already, so apologies if you're seeing them twice, but I spent Friday evening building a Lego set that Chris (aka Some Guy) sent me around Christmas. Haven't built an actual set (not even one of my old ones) in years. Chris sent me this Snow Speeder and also an AT-AT which is the next thing I need to build. Thanks so much for the fun time and for being so generous! (Apparently Chris contacted my wife about doing this, so it was a complete surprise when two packages came in the mail.)

I decided to put it over in front of my Star Wars poster and play around with the camera on my new tablet (it came with the phone plan; my wife needed a new plan since she was still on her late mother's). This is usually where we put our Christmas tree.

Special guest appearance: Godzilla.

Just wanted to share these and say thanks again! I'll put up pictures of the AT-AT once I've built it.

Saturday, February 06, 2016

Sports Cartoons

Super Bowl 50 is tomorrow, and I'm not really into that, but here's something sports-related. If you're my age, you might remember the series Sports Cartoon from Canada's Lamb Perlman Productions. They aired as interstitial cartoons on Nickelodeon in 1985; they were really short but always made me laugh and laugh and laugh. Anyway, here's 47 minutes' worth of them. These are great.

Friday, February 05, 2016

This Week in Neat-O

So, here's a bunch of stuff about the Oscars and racial diversity:

:: ScreenCrush has a video highlighting every black actor who has won an Oscar in competition. All 14 of them. 14 in 87 years. They also have a video montage of white actors playing non-white characters...

Did you hear about Joseph Fiennes playing Michael Jackson? His jokey justification that MJ was closer to his color by the end is so insensitive on so many different levels that I have a hard time even looking at Fiennes now. Luckily, it doesn't come up much...

I'm also not going to bother posting what Helen Mirren said about this whole thing, but it could easily have been headlined "Elderly White Oscar-Winner Defends Elderly Whites Who Give Out Oscars." What I said about Charlotte Rampling still applies.

And Joel Coen shouldn't have even opened his mouth, because he clearly doesn't understand what he's talking about and just ended up looking like a moron.

:: I'm So Damn Tired of Slave Movies. This editorial makes a very good point.

:: Here's a People article from 1996 about this same issue on the lack of diversity in the Academy, for anyone who thinks this just suddenly became obvious.

Here's some other stuff:

:: I really like the Pokemon Super Bowl commercial. Damn, has it really been 20 years? I am so old.

:: Speaking of Pokemon, here's the commercial for the Detective Pikachu game, which is a real thing.

:: Star Wars Outpost, A Cancelled LucasArts Game, Looked Way Better Than FarmVille. I would've played this all day and lost years of my life.

:: Each day, the New York Times is publishing a rare photo with a story behind it as part of their Unpublished Black History Project. This is definitely worth checking out.

:: Here's another trailer for The Witch. I wish I was watching this movie right now.

:: I also can't wait to see Laika's Kubo and the Two Strings, which has a great trailer, too.

:: Another trailer: Miles Ahead with Don Cheadle (who also directed) as Miles Davis. One of the movies I'm more interested in this spring.

:: What DC's 'New 52' Got Right—And What It Got Wrong

:: Roger has an interesting post--the first in a series--taking a look back at The Black Comic Book from 1970, which satirized the funny pages, checking in on how they did. Very interesting stuff.

Thursday, February 04, 2016

Film Week

A review of the films I've seen this past week.

MOON (2009)
I went into this cold. Though some people have told me to check it out the last few years, I didn't know anything about it except that Sam Rockwell played a miner on the moon, and it was directed by David Bowie's son, Duncan Jones. This movie really fucked me up. I haven't even seen a movie since then because it just really, really hurt. Rockwell is just on the moon, alone save for an artificial intelligence (voiced by Kevin Spacey with a perfect kind of detachment that emphasizes the lack of genuine human presence), and coming to the end of a three-year mining contract. His real-time communications are cut off, but he's plugging on, busying himself with building a model and sending messages to his family. He's also beginning to hallucinate. Then there's an accident, and from there... Well, it gets weird, it gets heady, and it gets pretty bleak. Now, it's an excellent science fiction movie. But it also happened to contemplate a lot of the issues I'm having a hard time with right now, such as what the value of life is and the inhumanity of corporations. And it does it in such a personal way, through the slow awakening of someone who just... wants to go home. It's beautiful, but it's hard. It touches on things that remind me of where I was mentally long before I sought help. Like I said, it fucked me up, but it really moved me. ****

Monday, February 01, 2016

Muppet Monday

The show's back tomorrow night, so here's a video to promote it. (Favorite detail: Pepe's gold chain that says "food.")