captpackrat: (Stone Trek)
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I think everyone would agree that The Wrath of Khan was better than Star Trek: The Motion Picture.
captpackrat: (Professor Frink)
When this washing machine gets spinning at full speed, it reminds me of that spinning ring machine from the movie Contact.

That must be why my socks keep disappearing.  They're passing through a wormhole and ending up on a planet orbiting Vega.

Hop to it

Apr. 3rd, 2011 12:30 am
captpackrat: (Plush Bunnies)
When I first saw the picture ads for Hop, I thought, "Oh how cute!  I must see this movie!"  And then I saw the trailer, which totally dashed my hopes for it.  A big part of the trailers was the jellybean poop scenes, so it looked like all the rest of the dreck being pumped out by Hollywood these days.  My SO was insistent on taking me to the movie, and I was so dreading this movie I almost sneaked out of the house early this morning.  I am so glad I didn't run off.

I enjoyed Hop. Quite a bit, actually.

The characters are absolutely ADORABLE.  If you like bunnies (and who doesn't), you MUST see this movie.  The blending of animation and live action was so seamless, it was impossible to imagine that the rabbits weren't real.  And it was very hard to believe that the Easter Bunny was voiced by House (Hugh Laurie).  The writing and dialog was decent, though not at all outstanding, however I laughed at quite a few points during the film.  And the whole jellybean thing?  What you see in the trailers is it.  Those two little scenes and that's all.

Some advice for James Marsden:  Jesus, man, lay off the caffeine!

I brought my E.B. plushie with me to the theater.  I heard quite a few "Oh look, he's got an E.B. plush!" from kids and adults alike.  I also overheard one woman telling her boyfriend, "You should have brought your Hop bunny!"

Teh horror!

Nov. 1st, 2010 06:34 pm
captpackrat: (Aaaaaaa!)
I read The Call of Cthulhu today and it got me thinking, I really don't care for modern horror.  You ask someone today what are their favorite horror stories, and they'll likely say Friday the 13th, Nightmare on Elm Street, the Texas Chainsaw Massacre, Saw, or other gore-fests.  I don't like any of those movies.  I much prefer the horror stories of 50-100+ years ago. 

I don't think having blood and internal organs spattered across the screen really does anything to create a feeling of horror.  No, the greatest terror is inside your own head, your own imagination.  The old horror writers would plant the seed of fear in you and then let your mind do the rest.  They less that's shown, the more your brain has to work with.  That's why I think radio dramas and books make for much better horror than movies.

The acme of the horror genre, in my opinion, has got to be Orson Welles' radio version of The War of the Worlds.  Well written dialog, with some simple sound effects, mixed with the imaginations of millions, led to mass hysteria.  Countless people actually believed the world was coming to an end.  Radio stations and police were swamped with calls from frightened citizens.  And there were no pictures. no video.  It was all in people's heads.

The best horror stories are those that give you an idea about something terrible, something unknown or unspeakable, and then leaving it to you to fill in the blanks.  No graphic disembowlings, no hockey masks and chain saws.  No, far more horrifying is the idea that some horrific creature could be out there, lurking, waiting.

"In his house at R'lyeh, dead Cthulhu waits dreaming."
captpackrat: (Books)
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I think the only books I've read before I saw the movie were the Lord of the Rings (the movie version sucked compared to the books, in my opinion), Watership Down (the movie was OK but the book was way better) and Mrs. Frisby and the Rats of N.I.M.H. (the movie was quite good, though very different from the book.  The sequels (books and movie) sucked donkey dongs, and not in the good way). 

I saw the BBC versions of The Lion, The Witch and the Wardrobe, Prince Caspian, The Voyage of the Dawn Treader and The Silver Chair first, then read the Narnia series, then saw the recent movies.  The BBC production was quite good, but I actively disliked the movies.

There have been quite a few movies that I've seen first and then later read the book.  The Jungle Book and Alice in Wonderland were much better as books.  The Last Unicorn was excellent in both movie and book form, but that's to be expected since Peter S. Beagle wrote both.  I enjoyed The Last Mimzy a lot more than I did the story it was based on, "Mimsy Were the Borogroves".
captpackrat: (Grinning plane)
I just got through watching a movie on TCM.  It was about a WWII pilot named Ted Stryker whose squadron went down during a mission, leaving him afraid of flying.  The love of his life, Ellen, had boarded an airplane and was about to fly out of his life forever, but he buys a ticket and boards the plane.  Once airborne, the pilots (one of whom is played by a professional sports star) and several passengers become ill from eating tainted fish, and Ted must overcome the haunting memories of his past to land the airliner safely.

This movie, of course, was Zero Hour! from 1957, starring Dana Andrews, Linda Darnell, Sterling Hayden and Elroy "Crazylegs" Hirsch.

A large portion of this movie would later be parodied in the 1980 movie Airplane!.  TCM showed both movies back to back and although Zero Hour! was a drama, it was quite amusing seeing just how much of the movie was copied scene-for-scene and even line-for-line in Airplane!.  Lines like "I guess I picked the wrong week to quit smoking", "I may bend your precious airplane, but I'm bringing it down" and "Flying a plane is no different than riding a bicycle."  I laughed when they took the young boy up to the cockpit and the pilot hands him a toy DC-4, puts his arm around the boy and asks, "You ever been in a cockpit before?".  Even the scene with the woman who goes crazy and ends up getting slapped by a line of people makes an appearance.

If you choose to watch Zero Hour!, I'd highly recommend making it a double feature with Airplane! first.
captpackrat: (Push Tail To Open)
Drove all the way to Council Bluffs this morning to watch Avatar in IMAX 3D.  My thoughts on the movie?  Beautiful.  Colorful.   Realistic and believable feline aliens.   Lots of side boob.  The story was utterly predicable.  It's a human-invader-tries-to-fit-in-with-aliens movie, how many permutations are actually possible?  Not many, obviously.   But it was still enjoyable to watch.

3D has improved dramatically since the days of blue-and-red glasses, but I still have yet to see anyone match the excellent 3D effects of Captain EO.  Avatar's 3D was decent, but the credits made me feel like my eyeballs were being turned inside out.  At least I didn't end up with a headache like I got with UP in 3D (Avatar used simple polarized lenses, UP used LCD shutter glasses).

After the movie, we managed to find the Alvarados in Council Bluffs.  The one I used to go to in Bellevue had closed down a year ago, as did the authentic Mexican place in Plattsmouth, and I'd been craving "authentic" Mexican fast food.  Boy was I disappointed.  I ordered a #2, like I always do.  In every authentic Mexican fast food joint, the #2 combo is 2 beef tacos, refried beans and rice.  Most places use some kind of shredded beef in a corn tortilla, but this place used ordinary ground beef, weakly spiced, in a fried flour tortilla.  And the tortilla was so stale I had to gnaw through one of the tacos.  The beans and rice weren't all that great either.  About the only part of the meal that was any good was the jamaica.  Taco Hell would have been better.  :-P

Went to Costco and did some shopping.  Picked up a 17 ounce box of Gavarny Belgian Truffles for less than $5.  They're really good, a nice rich, creamy and smooth chocolate.  Also picked up a big box of mint fudge cookies for under $5.  They're similar to Girl Scout Thin Mints, but richer in flavor.  And they're a lot cheaper.

EDIT:  I see that LJ is having trouble with the Rich Text editor.


Nov. 3rd, 2009 10:13 pm
captpackrat: (Bunny Butt)
Why do all aliens end up either being humans (weird forehead optional) or hideous bug/reptile/monster creatures?  Why don't we get more alien bunnies like Quozl or Redeeming Factors?
captpackrat: (Memetic Hazard)
1. Name a movie that you have seen more than 10 times: Star Wars
2. Name a movie that you've seen multiple times in a theater: The Matrix (the first one was really good.  Then they screwed it all up with the sequels)
3. Name an actor that would make you more inclined to see a movie: Dunno, I don't really keep track of actor's names.
4. Name an actor that would make you less likely to see a movie: Robin Williams.  He is not funny.
5. Name a movie that you can quote from: Star Wars.  I can quote pretty much the whole movie.
6. Name a movie musical that you know all the lyrics to all the songs: Xanadu
7. Name a movie that you have been known to sing along with: Xanadu
8. Name a movie that you would recommend everyone see: Xanadu
9. Name a movie that you own:  Xanadu!
10. Name an actor that launched his/her entertainment career in another medium but who has surprised you with his/her acting chops: Melvin Belli
11. Have you ever seen a movie in a drive-in?: That's the only place we saw movies when I was a kid.
12. Ever made out in a movie?: No
13. Name a movie that you keep meaning to see but just haven't gotten around to it: Citizen Kane
14. Ever walked out of a movie?: Eagle Eye, but only because someone I was with got sick and had to go to the hospital.
15. Name a movie that made you cry in the theater: None in the theater, but I usually cry at the end of The Last Unicorn
16. Popcorn?: With extra butter, thank you.
17. How often do you go to the movies?: When there are good movies out, once a week, otherwise once every 1 or 2 months.
18. What's the last movie you saw in the theater?: Bolt 3D
19. What is your favorite/preferred genre of movie?: Sci-Fi
20. What was the first movie you remember seeing in the theater?:  E.T. The Extra Terrestrial
captpackrat: (Default)
It's like a clown threw up all over The Matrix
captpackrat: (Push Tail To Open)
Had some coupons for Costco so I picked up a box of 50 wooden hangers for a mere $20.  I'll finally be able to get rid of all my old wire hangers.  I also picked up a nice Jabra Bluetooth speakerphone for only $50.

I picked up the last two Voltron DVD sets, so I now have all five metal lion cases.  I also picked up the second season of Drawn Together and the third volume of Beavis & Butthead, and just for the sheer cheese factor, I bought Galactica 1980, "with all ten thrilling episodes on two discs".

I'm always pessimistic about job interviews; I'm really not sure how well I did.  My SO apparently kicked ass at his interview; within a few hours he'd been called in to fill out paperwork and take a drug test.
captpackrat: (Close Encounters)
I didn't realize I had that many geeks reading my LJ.  :)

The icon is the Curwen Hand Signs for the 5 note theme from Close Encounters of the Third Kind.  It is used by Claude Lacombe (François Truffaut) to illustrate the 5 notes and to greet the alien near the end of the film.

The 5 notes are:

ray - me - doh - doh (lower octive) - soh
captpackrat: (Weasels Ripped My Flesh)
While in the bath today I had this weird thought.  Imagine the guy who does the horror movie trailer voiceovers (Don LaFontaine?) reading the words to the Teddy Bears' Picnic:

If you go out in the woods today...
You're sure of a big surprise...
If you go out in the woods today...
You'd better go in disguise....

For every bear that ever there was...
Will gather there for certain, because....

Today is the day the teddy bears have their picnic.
captpackrat: (Argh!)
Another piece of my childhood, raped by Hollywood.

The best part of the whole movie was the previews before the movie started.

"Spiderpig, Spiderpig, does whatever a Spiderpig does..."

*dies laughing*
captpackrat: (Default)
After much deliberation, and seeing just how fast my brokerage accounts were outpacing my money markets, I moved most of my inheritance money into the brokerage account.  I've now got about 10% in cash instead of the 50% I had before.  It's riskier, but I made as much in 6 weeks in stocks and mutual funds than my money market would make in a whole year!

I sold off most of my porn stocks on Thursday, except for Penthouse International (PTHL.PK), which I was still in the negative.  Unfortunately, my 45 day free trading period expired Friday.  I thought I was going to be stuck with the stock, but luckily, it shot up to $0.0065 a share Monday, so I was able to unload all 16,000 shares, pay the commission and still make a (small) profit!  Whoot!

While driving into Omaha on Saturday, Animale's car started overheating really bad.  We pulled off the road and checked under the hood.  Coolant had started spraying from under the radiator cap and I could see steam coming from a couple spots on the front.  Fortunately we were only a mile or so from a Chevy dealer, so we were able to limp in.  We had to stop twice more on the way because the engine kept heating up so quickly.  Apparently the radiator was both clogged and leaking.  That's another $500 expense we weren't ready for.  I had been worried about living out in the boonies and the fact that taxi service would probably be insanely expensive, but I learned there was a local cab company and it only cost about $30 (with tip) to go 15 miles.  I paid $25 to go 3 miles in San Diego!

We saw Spiderman 3 on Saturday.  Ho-hum.  I think Stan Lee's mind is no longer in mint condition.

Huge storms on Saturday, but for some strange reason, they all passed right to the east and west of us.  There were tornadoes reported in Glenwood, IA, a few miles away on the other side of the Missouri.  There were also a lot of flooded rivers, including the Platte.  Here, we got a lot of rain, and one VERY close lightning strike (when the flash and the sound occur at the same time, it's hit less than 100 yards away), but no apparent damage.

Our ISP wasn't so lucky.  Lightning hit the tower housing their wireless transmitter, knocking them offline for a good while.  Service wasn't restored fully until this afternoon.

I've been running a fever since at least Thursday.  It got up to 100.8ºF (38.2ºC) Sunday night.  I'm not sure what the problem is, I don't really feel ill, other than a headache and a bit of fatigue.  I was coughing a bit last night, but I haven't today.  I've increased my intake of Vitamin C and garlic and started taking myrrh (nasty tasting stuff!), hoping to beat down whatever infection I might have.  I still need to rebuild my herbal medicine chest, just for these kind of situations.
captpackrat: (Plush)
My SO took me to see The Last Mimzy today.  Best movie I think I've seen in a long time.  Most movies now days are so predictable, some I can figure out the ending in the first few minutes and most I've gotten the solution by the first 1/2 hour.  Mimzy was different.  I didn't figure out who the Mimzy was or where it came from until fairly near the end.  I like that.

There need to be more movies about plush rabbits.

Music by Roger Waters of Pink Floyd fame.


Mar. 31st, 2007 10:29 pm
captpackrat: (Think or I will set you on fire)
Geez, haven't posted anything in over a week, so here's a huge freaking updatethingie. 

Lots of thunderstorms this past week (I unplug my computer just to be on the safe side), and my SO and I have been driving a sick friend to work/doctor/etc the past couple weeks, so I haven't been online much.

Investments are mixed.  Sirius (SIRI) and DJ Wilshire REIT (RWR) have been sucking, as have the Janus Contrarian Fund (JSVAX) and the  Janus High Yield Fund (JAHYX), but Exxon Mobile (XOM), the Prudent Bear Fund (BEARX, heehee) and the Excelsior Energy & Natural Resources Fund (UMESX) are doing gangbusters.  So far after a week and a half, I'm ahead by $120.  In order to match what I could get at a bank, I need to make at least $50 a week.  I still have a good chunk of money to move into some sort of vehicle, probably more mutual funds.  Lots of prospectuses (prospectii?) to read.

My SO lost his job last week.  The company he was working for has been dropping people like flies.  Apparently they lost their biggest client.  He was feeling really depressed, then I reminded him he could apply for unemployment and he started feeling better.

Monday we went to a job faire just outside Offut AFB.  Both of us ran out of resumes.  I still need to follow up and send electronic copies to all the addressed on the business cards I picked up.   One of the companies there was a construction firm.  They weren't hiring for any IT positions, as they don't feel they need any in-house IT, but that's what my last employer thought before they met me.  ;)

OfficeMax had 2 gig SanDisk Cruzer Micro USB flash drives on sale for $25, so I picked one up.  Then I discovered that RadioShack had the 4 gig version on sale for $60.  My old 2 gig flash drive was nearly full, 4 gigs will really be helpful.  (I have Puppy Linux, the entire PortableApps suite, Office 2003 Enterprise + SP2 and a ton of other useful utilities on it, basically an entire software toolkit)

Also picked up a weather radio from RadioShack.  It has come in handy already (see below).

Chocolate-covered Ginger Altoids are strange.

Saw Meet the Robinsons today.  Much better than I expected.  I thought it was going to suck, but it was actually pretty darn good.  You just have to forget everything you know about temporal mechanics.

When we came out of the theater, it was pouring rain, there was a wee bit of hail, and there were lightning strikes less than a mile away.  Fortunately it let up pretty quickly and I didn't get too wet.  When I got home, I noticed my new weather radio was displaying something about a tornado watch.  It didn't go any farther than a watch though, at least in this county.
captpackrat: (Cold Weather)
After sliding off the driveway into the middle of the lawn earlier this week, I finally had to get some help getting out of the mud.  All the melting snow was only making the mud worse.  My right rear tire was hopelessly mired a good 4 or 5 inched deep in nasty slime.  If I'd had a locking differential (i.e., Positraction), I'd have made it out of there easily as my left tire was free, but my open differential just spun the right wheel while leaving the left stationary.  So I got a friend of mine to give me a tow with his 4x4, once the right tire was clear of the mud pit, I was able to regain traction and pull back onto the driveway under my own power.

It was insanely cold today.  The temperature got up to 24ºF (-4.4ºC), but winds where averaging 30 mph (48 km/h) with gusts to 41 MPH (67 km/h).  The cold isn't too bad, but the wind made things miserable.  It didn't help that I'd left my (rather ineffective) knit cap and driving gloves at home.  I remembered seeing cold weather gear at Menards, so we went there and I picked up a nice pair of insulated leather gloves and a fleece balaclava, all for a mere $15.  So toasty warm!  Though the balaclava makes me look like a terrorist or something.  Must remember to take it off BEFORE stepping inside the bank....

Also went to see Epic Movie today.  It's incredibly stupid and totally hilarious. The movie will make no sense unless you've seen at least a dozen other movies including Borat, Harry Potter, Chronicles of Narnia, the da Vinci Code, Snakes On a Plane, Nacho Libre, X-Men, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory and Pirates of the Caribbean and you've watched MTV in the past year.   Be sure to stay for the credits; everyone else had already left the theatre and missed the two extra bits in the middle of the credits.   (You can leave after the bit with Mel Gibson.)
captpackrat: (Default)
I haven't been updating my LJ very often, because there really hasn't been much going on.

My SO got me a couple more DS games for Christmas, Star Trek: Tactical Assault and Big Brain Academy.  Both are interesting and fun to play.  I need to find someone else who plays Animal Crossing: Wild World, as parts of the game depend on having people visit your town.

I started to come down with a cold yesterday, and it's in full swing today.  I'm hitting the Vitamin C and garlic extra hard.

For Christmas dinner, I made maple-glazed ham, mashed potatoes, dressing, pasta salad, corn and green beans.

I saw Night At the Museum on Saturday, it was much better than I was expecting, especially considering it had Robin Williams in it.  I think he's been mellowing out lately.  The last two movies I've seen him in, Night At the Museum and Happy Feet, he wasn't his usual obnoxious over-the-top self.

Finally got my proof of insurance cards Saturday, so I can finally drive again.  It's rather annoying to be stuck at home just because some moron hasn't mailed you a piece of paper.

No snow so far this year, other than the scant dusting that melted instantly about a month ago.  There's supposed to be a 50% chance of snow this weekend, but I'm kind of doubting it.


captpackrat: (Default)
Captain Packrat

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