So yes I’ve been behind on my blogging. Rather than explain I’ll simply say this: Fuck you, you want me to have consistent and regular articles than bloody well pay me (paypal transfers accepted, address emails to firstname.lastname@example.org) otherwise deal with my irregular posts and savour the rare treasures that they are! At any rate however, due to my literary constipation I now have to write a whole bunch of shit…
So to begin with, I guess I’ll first talk about the first medium of entertainment that I have failed to discuss, being comic books. I finally got around to reading what many might consider to be one of the must read comics of the modern era, Hellboy. The other week I got around to reading the first volume, titled Hellboy: Seed of Destruction. The book shares some parallels with the movie however upon reading it I realize the movie took some very serious departures from the first story’s general plot. However the bottom line is that Hellboy is caught in the middle of stopping Rasputin who has apparently become an evil sorcerer from conjuring up some ancient evil demon that hellboy is apparently the key to unlocking. If this all sounds rediculous and stupid that’s because largely it is, however if you’ve seen the movie you will probably agree that it’s at least moderately intersting and certainly gets points for orginality. The real head turner about the franchise that has created a legacy for Mike Mignola and John Byrne is the art style, which doesn’t do any favours for Byrne (who is only credited as script writer) but does establish Mignola for being a standout in the field. Having a very angular style and using sharp bold lines he creates a very crisp and clean style thats emphasized by simplistic but effective monochromatic backdrops with typically sparse scenery but using very bold colours. I have to admit, this is one of the few comics I’ve read where the story didn’t exactly have me enthralled but the art kept me in it. 7/10
Ok, on to the second diversion, Zombieland. If you read my previous post you might not be surprised to discover I was eager to see this movie. When I heard there was a zombie movie featuring a zombie kill of the week…well I got a little excited…
To give you the abridged summary of Zombieland, 4 people engage in a comical journey through a world torn to pieces by zombies and experience a variety of challenges with living with one another and learning to trust each other. Without dishing any spoilers I’ll say this, the movie is a riot. Jesse Eisenberg (Columbus) proves that Michael Cera isn’t the only dude in Hollywood capable of playing the comedic akward kid that pretty much every deems necissary at this point. The story follows him as the protagonist and revolves around his rules of survival (which appear in very clever ways throughout the movie) as he is travelling back to his home town from college until he encounters Tallahassee (Woody Harrelson) who teams up with him to help him get where he’s heading. Harrelson is essentially a quintessential badass with moments of both comic machismo and unexpected vulnerability which to my mind made him easily the most varied character in the picture and easily the most interesting. The two encounter Wichita (Emma Stone) and her younger sister Little Rock (Abigail Breslin) who seem to have some very deep seated trust issues. As would be absolutely necissary for any popcorn movie, Columbus and Whichita have a love interest plotline tied in there for good measure, though in all fairness it’s not terribly heavy handed and certainly doesn’t overshadow the fantastic comedy throughout the movie. The final result is a very satisfying comedic adventure movie with an absolute ton of pop culture references and joyous visceral gore. It’s tough not to love a movie this good, especially when it never seems to take the miss-step of taking itself too seriously. 9/10
For my third little tidbit to tell you about, some TV news as I have recently discovered to very little surprise that HBO continues to produce some wicked awesome content. I am speaking of course about Bored To Death. starring Jason Schwartzman playing a depressed slacker who is having a sort of identity crisis and decides to moonlight as an unliscenced detective. Yeah I know, not exactly the biggest stretch as far as roles are concerned for Schwartzman who’s more of an indie film underdog than John Wayne was a cowboy.
The show’s production values are staggering, from the very pilot I felt like I was watching something by Wes Anderson. Schwartzman’s neurotic protagonist is supported by a very capable supporting cast primarily in the form of Zach Galifianakis (The Hangover) and Ted Danson (Cheers…). Galifianakis plays his needy friend Ray who is seemingly void of tact and rarely helpful, while Danson plays his New York urbanite boss George who lives primarily for debauchery and generally affluent decadence. Both Danson and Galifianakis share screen time with Schwartzman at different times and provide interesting and funny banter which adds texture to the humour. The premise of the show is mostly based on Schwartzman responding to people contacting him in regards to his craigslist add as an unlicensed private detective, which means it could have a lot of material to work with, and allows it to have a fun tongue-in-cheek noir vibe which gives it character. I can’t really rate this one cause it’s still too early in the series to really decide with any conviction. I will say this however, if you havn’t checked it out yet, it’s definately worth a look.
Alright and lastly, Music. as an aside, if you’ve hung in this long I really must thank you for being such a trooper. But lucky for you this one is the freshest of the news bullitens. Just out this week, Tiesto dropped his latest album Kaliedoscope on the 6th, and in a word, it was…surprising.
His fourth official studio release (not counting his Athens 2004 parade of the athletes) Kaliedoscope sees Tiesto expand his trademark style of euro-trance into a fairly diverse album that really changes tempo and avoids falling into the common pitfall a lot of trance music encounters, tedium. The first thing that jumped out at me when I took a look at the album was without a doubt the collaborations. While some might argue that collaborations are hardly a gauge of an albums quality, what struck me was the musicians from very different genres. With the vocal talents of Nelly Furtado, Tegan & Sara, Kele Okereke (of Bloc Party), and Emily Haines (of Metric) Tiesto seemlessly merges their distinct vocal and lyrical styles with his infectious rhythems, pulsing beats, and complex melodies creating some of the most interesting listening I’ve experienced in a while. The tracks are all primarily synth driven and consist of layered sounds that build slowly until culminating, stopping completely, then sweeping in hard and fast. It’s a tried and true forumula that resounds pure and true. While I could go on a lot more to be perfectly honest I’m a lousy music critic and I’m getting tired of writing this god damned article. So I’ll just leave you with this…8/10