Tag Archives: cinema

Pitching the Perfect Game: Summer Blockbusters 2013

A couple weeks back in my WILDLY POPULAR PODCAST (available on both iTunes, this incredibly futuristic podcasting site, and youtube if you’re more of a vodcast guy/gal), I mentioned something somewhat briefly, but I wanted to make sure it got the appropriate amount of attention:

We are in the middle of a summer blockbuster movie season that is pitching the PERFECT GAME!

Here are several characters that I own zero copyrights to.

Here are several characters that I own zero copyrights to.

As my inner circle of close friends and court-appointed psychologists can tell you, my baseball analogies are a little on the weak side due to my limited knowledge of the game…that said, I’m pretty sure that in baseball, a perfect game is where the pitcher only throws strikes, and thus strikes everyone out in exactly 81 strikes. I also believe that this is somehow different from a “no-hitter” though I’m not really sure how, so I will stop embarrassing my friend Crocker by trying to guess.

Back to the analogy, this summer blockbuster movie season is pitching us nothing but strikes so far, and is well on its way to pitching us nothing but strikes over the next eight weeks. As a fan of summer blockbuster movie seasons, I’m ecstatic. I’m rooting for the SBBMS to pitch the perfect game, and you should be too.

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Twenty for Twenty: Heart and Souls

The world has changed a lot since 1993. On the 20th of each month, Twenty for Twenty takes us back to the best of 1993 and shares some gems that are gone, but shouldn’t be forgotten. If reminiscing is your thing, feel free to check out my Ten for Ten or Thirty for Thirty posts — which are literally the exact same gimmick cheaply repurposed for a combination of my own amusement and laziness.

What if I told you we could put Charles Grodin, Kyra Sedgwick, and Robert Downey Jr. into the same room and watch them perform onscreen for two hours? You’d probably have to google two of those three names like I did. But luckily 1993 beat you to the punch, and produced the heart and soul warming movie, Heart and Souls.

If Downey had made this movie ten years later it would've been called Heart and Souls and a Coke Problem.

If Downey had made this movie ten years later it would’ve been called Heart and Souls and a Coke Problem.

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30 in 30, Day 30: Wayfarer

Today is the last day of my 30 in 30 self-assigned project, and I thought it would be appropriate to cap it off with the short film me and my buddies James S. and Greg K. shot as our entry for the 48 Hour Film Festival — a national short film festival that assigns its participants a random genre, prop and line of dialogue out of a hat, then requires them to conceptualize, write, shoot, produce, and edit a 5-7 minute short film in 48 hours. It’s a really cool concept, and I’m pleased with what we produced, given the constraints of the festival. Of all the things I have done on zero sleep, this is probably one of the ones I’m most proud of, and least worried about getting arrested for. I hope seeing this film completely changes your life.

I’ve included the embedded version at the bottom of the post, but since we shot this in HD, it will probably look better if you watch it on youtube’s actual site.

Click me to see the best movie of ever right on your computron machine.

Title: Wayfarer
Genre: Adventure Serial
Prop: Deck of cards
Line of dialogue: “You do what you want to do.”

 

At some point over the weekend I’ll probably post some sort of recap on my thoughts on this forced creativity of the 30 in 30 project I’ve been doing, but as a general wrap I’d just like to say that I appreciate the kind words and encouragement from the people who’ve liked what I’ve been doing, and the tolerance from people who’ve hated it. Even though it probably won’t be daily, I’m excited that I’m back in the swing of forcing myself to create even when it’s not convenient, and I’ll continue to post things for you internet people to digest when there’s nothing better around. All the best, and thanks for sticking with me.

Cheers,
Dustin

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The Most Oscarful Time of the Year

For someone who has literally nothing to do the vast majority of the time, I sure do seem to stay crazy busy. It feels like this is the first moment I’ve had to breathe in half a year. That said, let’s make some Oscar picks, shall we?

Note: Categories are presented in no particular order, and picks are being made regardless of whether or not I’ve see all the films in a given category.

Best Actor:
Right away I’m torn for several reasons.
—George Clooney probably gave the best performance in Up in the Air, but he’s won so much already that it’s almost boring to see him get it.
—I like Jeff Bridges, but I think Crazy Heart is overhyped and not that great of a movie.
—Morgan Freeman seems like the go-to guy since you know he did a good job, and likely has the fewest years of eligibility (aka life) left in him.
—I don’t like Colin Firth, and furthermore can’t in good conscience select someone whose resume includes Love Actually, What a Girl Wants and the Bridget Jones series.
—Jeremy Renner did an ok job in Hurt Locker, but it’s just not the kind of character I like to see win.

Pick: Morgan Freeman. Eh, why not? Besides, he might smite us if we don’t give it to him.

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Han Solo Says: Patrón Tastes Even Better When It’s Free

It’s 7:59pm on a Monday night. Do you know where your Boston Celtics are?

Wherever they are, they certainly weren’t on the court tonight. Because the top seeded, over-60-win Celtics were just beat for the second time in a row by the eighth seed Atlanta “We Hope to Break .500 Someday” Hawks. Mind you these Celtics are the same team that some have hailed as “the greatest team in the league…and possibly NBA history,” (quote courtesy of ESPN writer and Boston-ophile Bill Simmons). I don’t care one way or the other about Boston-area pro sports teams (although I’ll root for Tom Brady any day), but it certainly doesn’t do much to refute talks about how Eastern Conference NBA teams are less-talented than their western counterparts when the supposedly best team in basketball history drops two in a row to the 2,749th-best team in basketball history (right between the ABA’s ‘74 Virginia Squires and some guys from a pickup game in North Dakota in the summer of 1991). However, I can’t be truly unhappy after the Cavs snagged another win from the Washington “Bark > Bite” Wizards on Sunday, and are prepped to close out the series with another one back in Cleveland on Wednesday.

But enough banter, you’re here for the same reason I am: because you love me and you love hearing about me. So with that in mind, here is what you need to know to be in the now. As in, “now go get me some coffee.”

-I’m Not in it for You, Princess. I Expect to Be Well Paid-
I went in for my first day of training the other day, and so far the new job looks like it’s gonna rock. For those of you who didn’t tune in last week, I recently secured a job working for Harrison Ford’s son, Ben Ford at an upscale restaurant in Culver City called Ford’s Filling Station. The people are awesome, the atmosphere is just right, and I really feel a connection with this place. And they bought me a $35 steak for dinner last week. Very cool. I’ll keep you updated as I settle in more and learn the nuances and intricacies of saying complicated phrases like “welcome to Ford’s, how many?” It’s going to be rough.

-Great Kid, Now Don’t Get Cocky-
Had a very busy week, capped off with an equally busy weekend. And it’s looking like this week is going to follow suit. I’m overlapping my last week at UCLA Medical with some training shifts at Ford’s, so that is going to make for one very tired Dustin starting Thursday night. But oh yeah, I just remembered, I’m a baller and I don’t need sleep because I kick ass, so it’s not gonna be a challenge. Whew, good thing I thought of that ahead of time.

-Traveling Through Hyperspace Ain’t Like Dusting Crops, Boy-
I finally got a haircut from a stylist named Rhonda over the weekend (who is as talented at haircutting as she is portly. Which is very, if you didn’t know). I asked her to give me a shorter, more summery haircut than the one I had, and she kind of took that to mean that I wanted something that if I got drafted into the Army tomorrow, I’d fit right in. My hair is short, is what I’m saying. But in her defense, it did feel light and summery when I was on the beach, and I probably won’t need to get it cut again before I visit home and have Irene do it properly.

-So What Do You Think? A Princess Like You and a Guy Like Me-
I saw that movie Forgetting Sarah Marshall with a few people last night, and I must say, it was decent. Which was better than I was expecting. By far the best character in the movie was the self-centered, oblivious British rockstar character. He was more of a second-tier character, but the movie would not have been the same without him. The second best part of the movie was costar Mila Kunis. Longtime fans of That 70’s Show (not I) will probably already know this, but Mila Kunis is really really hot. I don’t know if I never noticed because she’s the voice of the very un-hot Meg on Family Guy, or if I overlooked her because I thought That 70’s Show was an abomination, but the fact of the matter is: she is really really hot. There was a bit too much male nudity for me to give the movie an A+, but that British dude’s performance coupled with the fact that Mila Kunis is really really hot pretty much make the movie worth the price of admission right there. Also, Mila Kunis is really really hot, you guys. Seriously.

-She May Not Look Like Much, But She’s Got it Where it Counts, Kid-
Ok, so this isn’t interesting, but too bad, I’m telling you anyway. On nice, sunny California days, sometimes I like to fire up the ceiling fan in my room to help circulate some air. But for some unknown reason, my ceiling fan doesn’t work. Don’t get me wrong, it turns on, it spins the blades, it even makes all the appropriate ceiling-fan-related noises. But it just doesn’t generate any wind or breeze or cooling sensation at all. I’ve tried reversing the rotation on the fan, in case it was set wrong, I’ve tried it at all the different speed settings, but nothing helps. All my ceiling fan is really good for is taking the all the dust that’s been collecting on it since the 60’s and evenly distributing said dust around the room.

Ok, I’m off to catch a show at The UCB Theater (using acronyms gives me a false sense of superiority), so I’m outie for now. And remember, don’t drink expensive tequila unless someone else is paying for it. Conversely, if you’re a random stranger and you offer to buy me and my friends a round of fancy tequila at the bar to prove what a badass you are, really all you’re doing is spending $85 to have us mock you all night.

Cheers,
Dustin


We already have a lime tree, now all we need is a tequila tree to go along with it…

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