STEVEBLOG Home on the Range

19Jan/120

3D and me… in 3D

Before there was 3D there was the backwards 3 as an “E”. Historically, there may have been 3D movies before any movies actually used a “3” in the title but fact checking is so much harder when Wikipedia is blacked out. Thankfully I have years of horror movie watching experience to at least point out Friday the 13th Part 3 went the 3D route whereas Critters 3 went took the backwards 3 path. What does this have to do with anything? Nothing. Except everything.

There are underlying patterns to movie series. Patterns that reach farther than the Hollywood rule of 2 (see Dante’s Peak/Volcano, Deep Impact/Armageddon, et.c). I’m going down to the sequel settings pattern. Sequels have to one up their predecessors, that is the whole point of them. Also, some dude just had a hissy fit on American Idol, their words, not mine. Right, back to movies. So naturally, at some point the writers run out of legitimate ideas to improve on the previous movie and they go to one of the go to settings. What are those? Space and/or time travel. Seriously, look it up, any time a series feels like it is running out of ideas it goes to those. If you’re a trekkie, which you we both know you are, you crazy jogging pants homebody, then you probably could name more time travel/holodeck/space episodes of The Next Generation than your IQ. Nerd!

Now to the patterns. The standard small town series hits the big city by #3 (Children of the Corn, Critters). The… wait, Grey’s Anatomy is still on TV? I really shouldn’t try to write while watching American Idol… nor should I admit to watching it. Anyway, other franchises (how are you a student and a face painter?!) hit their rut at #4 and decide to go to space (Leprechaun, Hellraiser). I bet if you look up Moonraker it would be Roger Moore’s fourth Bond Movie. If it isn’t give me a few minutes and check Wikip… damn you internet blackout!

I hope you have learned something tonight, moderately despised reader. It’s not what you know, it’s who you know. We all know the internet but there are scary people out there who still print out every email they get. Sadly, those people are the ones making the rules. So for the sake of us all, vote Steve for 2013 in whatever election you get to vote in. If elected I promise to totally abuse my power, so you better have voted for me. :fistshake:

Your pal,

Steve

13Oct/110

I watched it so you don’t have to: Frankenfish

Before watching this movie I had a clever lead in explaining that this is effectively the sequel to Piranha 2 more so than Piranha 3D. Unfortunately the DVD description lead me astray because this was more of a Lake Placid meets Hatchet. If that makes any sense to you then I feel sorry for you. Not that you have seen both of those movies because they are worth watching but because you are getting closer to thinking like me. Trust me, you don’t want to go down that road… it’s only paved part way.

Frankenfish (2004)

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It’s hard to think of a swamp creature movie without thinking of Swamp Thing. Not that I’ve ever seen it but my all time favourite beer’s label was clearly inspired by that film. Oh wait, that was Creature from the Black Lagoon. The point is that there are well established formulas (formulea for you fancy folk) for these movies. Being a killer fish movie, I expected three specific deaths: killed underwater with blood bubbling up, almost at safety before being dragged away, and a barely alive torso pulled out of the water. I was not disappointed.

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Yes, they actually said he fisted the fish.

The premise of Frankenfish is fairly straightforward; a medical examiner teams with a biologist to investigate a suspicious death in some isolated part of the bayou. By the way, the biologist is an attractive woman and the medical examiner was a former local who moved to the big city and made something of himself. Don’t worry, they decided not to force us down the romance between these two because the biologist turned out to be a lesbian. If you guessed that signed her death sentence then you would be correct.

The rest of the human chow span a solid set of caricatures; the stoner couple, the ‘Nam vet, the voodoo lady, the attractive swamp girl, the douchebag lawyer, and the rich game hunter and company. The movie takes a brief break from the action to introduce these characters and toss in some random nudity. Yes, you can sleep easily because there was a banana joke. Once we have gotten sufficiently introduced we get back to the killing. Horror movies are all about the kills and there was some pretty solid gore, especially for a fish movie.

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Eat your heart out, sissy movies!

Basically we get to watch everyone killed off except the medical examiner and the swamp girl (don’t worry, they knew each other from high school) in various bloody ways before they finally kill off the last giant fish. However, in Godzilla fashion, the movie closes with a school of mini killer fish comeuppancing the douchebag with tiny niblets of death. Screw you spellcheck, I’ll write what I want.

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You know how I know I’m 8 years old? PU.

Frankenfish is a true B movie; cheesy, fun, violent, with random nudity. They nailed all my expectations and tossed in a few more things for good measure. Since I feel that I should complain about something, I’ll complain about the misleading title. “Franken”fish totally implies mad scientist created zombie fish and all we got was genetically engineered super fish, lame!! But seriously, I would not be surprised if Frankenfish 2: The Fishening gets greenlit.

Your pal,

Steve

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30Aug/111

One Week

We take a break from our regular broadcast for a very special message. One Week is an amazing movie. It might shake all two of my readers to their very core to hear this, but not only did I cry during this movie, I cried both times I saw it. Now it may not be the crying that you are used to, that’s physical pain from wedgies, nance, but it is crying all the same. At one point during the movie, the main character says that if he had one week to live he would make love right to her right now. Replace her with Canada and life and that is the power of this movie.

By all rights, I should not have expected much from the movie. A Canadian film with little fanfare and starring Pacey from Pacey’s Creek. Yes, I know what the official title was and I also know why we all watched it.

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Seriously, if I didn’t know what this was I would assume it was a horror movie. Dawson is creepy as heck.

One Week takes a fairly simple premise, a man going West for adventure while trying to cope with his cancer diagnosis, and uses it to celebrate all things Canadian. Ok, so the East coast doesn’t get much mention so it’s more like celebrating all things Canadian that count. Ok, sorry East coast, you are pretty awesome too. Trust me, I will be back to drink in your pubs and regale you of stories of people with more all of their teeth.

The slow pace and abundance of Tim Horton’s cups cannot stop the sheer beauty of the country from shining through. Even without a potentially terminal medical condition hanging over my head, I too feel like just packing a bag and driving.

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If scenery like this does not float your boat, you may have a few too many holes.

Even if you do not really connect with the emotional journey of living in the face of death, watching for the sheer beauty of the country is inspiring. Now if you excuse me, I’m going to invest some money in the lottery to fund my next cross country journey.

Your pal,

Steve

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28Mar/110

Operation Beached Whale

Everyone loves a buffet. There is no wait for your food to be cooked and you can eat all the things you love. Feel like an all bacon breakfast? Done. How about an ice cream dinner? Just add sprinkles. Feel like loosening your belt? Go right ahead. Yet behind this inviting front lies a terrible secret; you will end up paying more for less. You see, these buffets bank on you not eating anywhere near your money’s worth. Ok, so that is not really a big secret because obviously they have to make money somehow. However, I am feeling generous so I will teach you, my faithful reader, how to eat your money’s worth at an all you can eat buffet.

1) Research

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The Declaration of Interdependence was written on a napkin by a… a…

You probably think you can just roll up to a buffet with a big appetite and demolish that heat lamped food trough. Well guess what? You have already lost. Buffets know that some of the tastiest and filling food can also be the cheapest. Your first action is to know your food. You need to know what the most expensive dishes are at the buffet. This varies by restaurant specialty, season, and unpredictable shortages of course, but so remember to keep on top of local prices. Ideally you would set up a graph that tracks price versus filling but we all know how lazy you are (the Velcro shoes are a dead giveaway). A well thought out game plan makes all the difference when it comes to being a chump or a champ.

2) Training

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Feel the burn. That’s indigestion.

So you have mapped out your eating plans and marked your high value foods. Now it is time to skip a meal or two to build up an appetite and chow down, right? Wrong. Hunger is good but starving yourself is a one way ticket to failure. Now you may be used to failure but that is a stench I just cannot wear. The key to filling your stomach is bringing the largest stomach possible to the table. How do you do that? Simple, eat more leading up to the feast. Stomachs are elastic, so stretching them with large meals is necessary to maximize your consumption capacity.

3) Game Day

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Anyone see my contact down there?

You have a food strategy. Your stomach is at peak capacity. What comes next? Build that appetite. No, don’t starve yourself. Remember 4 sentences ago? You want to go the other way by working up an appetite through some good old fashioned exercise. The body uses food as fuel so naturally if you burn through some energy you will need more. Ergo, more exercise leads to more hunger. I know, crazy isn’t it?

The Simpsons may have given us the impression that we can eat a restaurant out of business through sheer tenacity but that is far from the truth. You see, unless you are a champion eater then you will need to follow an eating regiment to ensure success. If you are a champion eater then you are already doing it, smart ass. So just this once, rise above the normal. Extend beyond the average. Follow my three steps and you can guarantee that you eat more than your $15 worth at your next buffet. Or stay at home and eat potato chips, but hey, it’s your life.

Your pal,

Steve