Monthly Archives: March 2013
The season three finale of The Walking Dead was unbelievably anti-climactic. The show stretched three hours worth of plot into 16 hours of TV all building up to a showdown between the group in the prison and the citizens of Woodbury. And then when it finally came to pass, it was a complete non-event. The battle scene from the mid-season premiere (which was obscured by smoke most of the time) was far more impressive.
This episode needed to deliver the goods in order to redeem a season that spent most of its screen time running in pace. It should have given us a hail of bullets, a griping final showdown and a cathartic takedown of the season’s villain. Instead, it gave us an hour of head-scratchers that seemed completely disconnected from the 15 hours that lead up to it. Read the rest of this entry
A December visit to Disney World has not sated my thirst for theme park fun, but merely heightened it. So I loaded up a few friends on Easter Saturday and we set off for one of the geographically closer parks at Busch Gardens in Williamsburg, Virginia. There were bumps along the way, but in the end my itch got scratched.
Disney World’s enormous set of parks and resorts is by far the leader in beautifully themed lands and immersive family fun, but on a smaller scale Busch Gardens in Williamsburg comes about as close as any other. In fact, for those who really enjoy top-notch roller coaster thrills, this is a less expensive option which offers gorgeous visuals and more intense rides.
Uma Thurman has been a Batman villain, Robin Hood’s girlfriend, an Avenger (the English kind) and Quentin Tarantino’s muse. She’s worked with Robert DeNiro, Bill Murray, John Travolta and George Clooney. But these days, she’s shifted gears into supporting roles. What the hell happened?
A while back, I did a write-up on Disney World experiences I considered to be over-rated. I had intended to follow-up with a list of experiences I considered to be under-rated. But as I was preparing to write the follow-up, I was having trouble narrowing down my list. I got to thinking that I would like to spend a little more time talking about some of Disney’s under-appreciated offerings. So instead of a single article, I am going to write a series of follow-ups about under-rated Disney World experiences.
Acting is so often a very random experience. While there are companies and people who you definitely think you will work with again, some opportunities appear to pop up out of nowhere. Such was the case with my most recent foray into grownup pretending.
Merle’s a tricky character. He made a memorable first impression during one episode in the show’s first season. He was a violent racist with no apparent redeeming values. After that one episode, Merle remained offscreen for the rest of the first season and most of the second. His one appearance was as a figment of his brother’s imagination. So fans were understandably excited when Merle returned to the spotlight in season three.
Since Merle’s return, he’s been difficult to pin down. He’s still an unrepentent racist. He has committed unsavory acts including torturing Glenn and handing Maggie over to the Governor. He also gave killing Michonne a pretty good try. And yet, the Merle of season three seems like a different character. He’s much more sympathetic and often charming. He does bad things, but gosh darn it he’s just misunderstood.
At some point every winter, the blues set in. This year has been especially bad since it has been a cold one and I have been working extremely long hours. Like a lot of people, I can’t wait for spring which seems just out of reach. This time of year, I always look forward to the opening of our regional amusement park, Kings Island.
Another Andrea episode? Oh boy.
Recently, LeBlog readers have been subjected to my crotchety old man act, as I have bemoaned the state of current big screen comedy. Some of my objection to movie humor of the last decade has been its reliance on and glorification of idiots with little character development. scatological humor is all about context. When it appears to be the context, I tend to check out.
The Incredible Burt Wonderstone trods the line between stupidity and comedy quite deftly and delivers some big laughs in the process. This is, in part, because it is mostly about people who are either nice or successful or both.
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This may appeal to Disney fans and those with Disney fatigue equally. Pretty clever display of strong vocal talents. Enjoy.
The Walking Dead finally brought us the long-awaited one-on-one showdown between Rick and the Governor. If you were expecting an explosive confrontation, well, that didn’t happen. Instead, the show served up a heaping helping of filler. But as Walking Dead filler goes, it wasn’t half bad.
Last episode focused primarily on Andrea – the worst character on the show. This episode of The Walking Dead can only be an improvement. While this episode didn’t do much to advance the season’s plot, it did play to the show’s strengths. It wasn’t great, but it was as good as The Walking Dead gets.
The 1970’s are widely considered to be an era of cinematic genius. Most of this reputation is built on a boiling revolution of elevated realism; the mainstreaming of the work started on stage in the 1930’s by the Group Theatre. It manifested itself in the dark modern dramatic works of Coppola, Scorsese, Cimino, Friedkin, DeNiro and Pacino, among others. At the same time, George Lucas and Steven Spielberg were ushering in the age of the special effects spectacle, the sequel and the t-shirt and toy deal. Comedy is not what first comes to mind.
But the 1970’s were also a powerhouse of iconic comedy. Of course, as a child born at the beginning of the decade, I knew nothing about any of this at the time. What I was getting was Sesame Street and Happy Days. Not that Grover wasn’t a master of vaudeville-style humor. So let’s take a look back at what I was missing and had to discover as a teenager once video tapes of movies became widely available. Let’s travel back to the wild and wooly “Me Decade.”