Friday, May 13, 2011

Happy Friday

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Film Week

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

THOR (2011)
As I said the other day, I really enjoyed this. A good one to see in the theater, too (though I did see it in 2D instead of headache-inducing 3D), because the sweep of Asgard needs to be experienced rather than merely seen. The story and look are a surprisingly great combination of the Jack Kirby cosmic weirdness and J. Michael Straczynski's recent run on the title (like the small New Mexico town where half the movie is set). It's nice that the movie manages to split the difference between being a component for the eventual Avengers movie and making the story of the Mighty Thor actually interesting. The performances make a lot of it, too, particularly Chris Hemsworth in the title role and Tom Hiddleston as a surprisingly sympathetic Loki. This is the kind of movie that comic book movies should be: goofy without being stupid, fun without being fan service (though there is a tiny bit, naturally), and it takes its premise seriously without being ridiculously full of itself. None of that Dark Knight posturing. **** stars.

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Playmate of the Year 2010

Yes, the voters have spoken and picked their Playmate of the Year from last year's Playmates, and here I am for the seventh time now, with my completely subjective post of objectification, counting down my favorites and not-so-favorites.

12. Heather Rae Young, Miss February. Now you know how I am. Far be it from me to come down on someone for looking "fake"... but this is really distracting.

11. Ashley Hobbs, Miss December. Yes, the most attractive picture of her was one that covered half of her face with sunglasses. I feel terrible saying that, but, well, here we are.

10. Kyra Milan, Miss March. She has a pretty body, but she just seems to uncomfortable and awkward in front of the camera. Couldn't they have kept going until she loosened up a bit?

9. Francesca Frigo, Miss August. Meh. Sorry.

8. Amy Leigh Andrews, Miss April. She's cute, but the photographer just doesn't really find anything interesting to do with her. He's got a real Southern handful here, but the pictures are really boring. For the last few years, Playboy has just really needed to get rid of its staff of photographers and bring in some new blood with some new viewpoints. It's always the same set-ups over and over and over.

7. Kassie Lyn Logsdon, Miss May. She's kind of pretty. She reminds me of someone, but I'm not sure who... And I like them dusky. The pictures have the same problem of being very familiar and plain, though.

6. Olivia Paige, Miss September. They went a little overboard with the Photoshop on her, but she's quite pretty.

5. Jaime Faith Edmondson, Miss January. Well, you know me and redheads. It would be rare for a redhead to be under number 6... I wish her pictures had better lighting, though.

4. Shanna McLaughlin, Miss July. Same problem. Shanna is beautiful, and has some real mien and bearing. She's substantial and not a waif. But the lighting in her pictures is just... off. Her body makeup, too. The people in charge of this shoot really shanked her on that. If not for that, she might have been my favorite this year.

3. Shera Berchard, Miss November. Those dusky eyes...

2. Claire Sinclair, Miss October. This was the reader choice for PMOY. On the surface, she seems like the obvious choice. But if you look at her pictures, they're really a lot of fun. I know there are a lot of people who think the whole vintage/retro/pinup/burlesque look is all played out and overdone, but I'm not one of those people and neither should you be. Claire looks like a girl you could dress up like Jenny Blake from The Rocketeer and have a lot of fun with. She's not my number 1, but she's a fine choice.

1. Katie Vernola, Miss June. My favorite this year, though, was Katie Vernola. And I can't quite define why, I admit. There's just something about her look, about her natural ease in front of a camera, that really gets my attention and my adoration. Plus, she looks a little like a girl I briefly dated in high school. She just has that certain look that I'm most attracted to. I can't quantify it, but I can appreciate the hell out of it...

So there we go, Playmates of 2010.

Monday, May 09, 2011

Small Steps in Personal Growth

Becca and I went to see a movie yesterday. It was the first time we'd been to the cinema since summer of 2009, so I guess I wanted to see Thor more than any movie of the last two years...

Anyway, it felt nice to go out. I know this kind of thing isn't a big deal to most people, but with my nascent agoraphobia really getting the better of me in 2010, it feels like a small triumph. Becca still does all the driving (though I did drive myself to a job interview last week, and it's enough of a triumph being comfortable with someone else driving me around), but getting up and having some lunch out of the house and going to a movie... I don't know, it made me feel more normal.

It was weird, too, because when I first sat down in the theater I felt... wrong, somehow. Like something bad would happen. Claustrophobic, even. I had trouble breathing for a moment or two. I don't know why or where it comes from, but it was there. I just pushed it down and resolved to enjoy the experience.

Also, the movie was really fun, so that helped a ton.

It was just nice, really nice, to be out on a Sunday afternoon with Becca, like we used to be able to do, just enjoying ourselves. Getting a burger for lunch, going to a show... being normal. It felt really, really good.

I think I really needed that.

I've been in such a good mood.

Kristen Bell Mondays

Sunday, May 08, 2011

Song of the Week: "The First Time Me Eat Cookie"

Because it's Mother's Day. Time to reflect on what our mothers did for us that changed our lives. For me, it was my mother exposing me to science fiction. That was my cookie.

So, to be honest, were cookies.

Happy Mother's Day!