I recently finished watching The Good Son on Chiller. Dinner earlier tonight was a Variety Big Box Meal from Kentucky Fried Chicken (a drumstick – Crispy -, a chicken strip, a box of popcorn chicken, mashed potatoes with gravy, coleslaw, and a 32 ounce Dr. Pepper). Good stuff, that.

I worked the past two days from 8AM-4:30PM. I am off tomorrow and (wait for the drum roll…ah, there it is) Saturday. Yes, you’ve read that correctly – I have a Saturday off. Stop the presses and all that jazz.

Tomorrow, my mother will have an operation on her right eye for a cataract. She will be awake but sedated during the procedure. If all goes well (and we all hope so), the left eye will be done in three weeks. What’s cool is that her doctor said that though this operation isn’t LASIK, she’ll be able to see without glasses. That’s pretty damn cool. While she got her pre-op last week, I received a free eye exam (I’ve not had one in almost four years) thanks to her super cool doctor. He wrote me a prescription in case I need it but he said that other than a slight variance, my eyesight is the same. And boy was that a thorough exam – the guy had a penlight in my eye and was really intensely examining my eyes.

As you can plainly see, I’ve procured Francis Ford Coppola’s widely reviled return to the director’s chair, Youth Without Youth, from Netflix. Though the conventional word from the critics was not all that kind, the man is a cinema legend and no matter if the film turns out to be exactly what they claim, it’s still worth investing the time to check it out.

Using my economic stimulus check, I purchased a Magnavox 19 inch LCD HDTV and an RCA upconverting DVD player. I’ve still got to wait until I get some more cash to upgrade our DIRECTV satellite dish and my bedroom receiver to an HDTV DVR receiver, as though they’ll replace the dish for free, there’s a lease fee (you have to sign a two year contract, no problem as we’ve been DIRECTV customers for three, bordering on four years) of $234. But the image and sound quality of the upconverted DVDs is truly breathtaking and I can’t wait to see that same display once all the bells and whistles are installed. As of now, though, it’s perfectly fine as it’s nice to have a fairly bigger TV in my bedroom – the last one was either a 10 or 13 inch.

Iron Man – ***1/2 out of four – Robert Downey Jr. IS this movie and it’s one of the best films, superhero or otherwise. But if we’re talking the genre, this is in close contention with Spider-Man 2 as the second best comic book film of all time (as we all know Batman Begins is the best comic book film ever made).

Speed Racer – *** out of four – The Wachowski Brothers turn in a film that looks like it was filmed in a psychedelic candy factory but it works and is a charming and fun film that unfortunately was ignored at the box office. Once again, the theory proves true – despite massive marketing dollars, you CANNOT present something to kids and attempt to tell them it’s cool. It just doesn’t work. Despite the intensely underwhelming box office performance, it’s an entertaining, enjoyable film with great acting and inventive visual effects.

Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull – *** out of four – A truly rewarding and exciting film that does well in evoking the flavors and feel of the ’50s era it’s set in. Some have been carping about the entrance of sci-fi elements into the franchise, but wasn’t that the big cinematic theme of the era, along with Russia and the Red Scare? The entire damn cast is exceptional – there isn’t a false note or phoned-in or workmanlike performance here. Indy is back in fine form, surrounded by an intriguing plot and well-defined characters. A great, great film.

I may be seeing Kung Fu Panda with two friends this weekend. I’ll let you know. I’m fairly ambivalent about the movie, but then again I made a solemn vow to myself to actually see all of the summer films this year (aside from Adam Sandler’s latest waste of celluloid, as he and his films (aside from Punch-Drunk Love) should be put on trial in The Hague). I am extremely eager to see The Strangers ASAP. I’ve heard great things about it and it’ll be nice to see original horror for once. I was immensely elated to see it do so well this weekend at the box office. It brought in $21 million (on a budget of $9 million), averaged $8,515 per theater), and is the highest-grossing horror film of the year. So kudos to Rogue Pictures. It’s nice to see original horror being rewarded with a great box office return, and my ass will be in the theater to see this as soon as I can.

I am REALLY, REALLY, REALLY hoping that tomorrow Hillary Clinton concedes. If she goes scorched earth, that will further proof just how morally bankrupt her campaign is. It’s time that we embrace Barack Obama as the Democratic nominee so that he can start tearing down the idiotic policies of George W. Bush John McCain and laying out the very apparent case that Barack Obama represents the change and transparency in government that we’ve needed for so very long.

I’ll spend most of the day being supportive of my mother while also soaking in as much MSNBC as humanly possible; as it is, I wind up spending most of my casual surf-the-Internet-with-the-TV-on time with MSNBC on in the background but I always wind up paying close attention anyway. I’m such an unapologetic political news and regular news junkie. In fact, it helped at work the other day.

A middle-age couple had two of the $40 DTV vouchers to redeem for a DTV converter. We have two models for sale – a no-frills version for $37 and a $47 model made by GE that has added features like an onscreen TV guide and Dolby Digital sound. The man then befan to rail against GE for providing technology components to Iran. I informed him that, as within the next month or so, GE will no longer be doing that. He then segued into an anti-Jane Fonda rant. I began to mention that I despise FOX News but that doesn’t mean I avoid seeing films released by 20th Century Fox or TV series I like that air on FOX. I also told him that when I worked at a video store and a lady told me that she was not going to watch The Interpreter because she hates Sean Penn’s political views, I explained that just because I hate Bruce Willis’ political views (die hard – no pun intended – Republican) doesn’t mean I’ll avoid his films. I said to the male guest that if one does that, they limit themselves to a narrow, confined box and deny themselves potentially great entertainment. He then wholeheartedly agreed – and decided to purchase the GE converter. Sometimes, just sometimes, sound logic wins the day.

Next week one of the most gifted and talented singer-songwriters will release their new album. Alanis Morissette’s 7th studio album, Flavors of Entanglement, will be released on June 10th. While her 1996 debut album, Jagged Little Pill, is an undisputed masterpiece, her sophomore album Supposed Former Infatuation Junkie, is transcendent, poetic, and an immense force of nature. Although I only purchased her first two albums when they came out, I’ll definitely be picking this one up. She is a genius wordsmith, through and through. Here is the first single from Flavors of Entanglement, “Underneath”.


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