Totally gruntled

English: Adam Carolla at 107.7 The End's Lonel...
English: Adam Carolla at 107.7 The End’s Lonely Hearts Valentines Party (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Today I was listening to my favorite pod-caster.. Adam Carolla.

He raised a valid point that people are often disgruntled but vary rarely gruntled. Then I wondered, is grunted even a word? It has to be right? You can be dis-something if that something actually meant nothing? Wow, that’s a beautiful statement.

Well the ever exhaustive spell check (one of the things making us stupider every day, that and sat nav) thought that I’d made a typo.. yet the dictionary (do you kids know what that is?) defines gruntled as satisfied. There you go.

Anyway, I’m totally grunted with this post.

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God bless characters I can relate too

God Bless America
God Bless America (Photo credit: ClaraDon)

Back in the day and before you were born, there was a strange comedian called Bobcat Goldthwait who appeared in some pretty shitty movies that make up the Police Academy franchise. He did a lot of screaming which scared animals and old people. Funny but not super ha ha funny. Anyway, Bobcat (there are worse names, like Kardashian) evolved to become a director of low budget independent movies that I’m sure you’ve not heard of.

I watched his latest creation “God Bless America” is a black comedy about Frank. Frank is generally miserable as a result of his deteriorating relationships with his ex wife and uncaring daughter, his shitty job, a recent diagnosis of a brain tumor and the unrelenting supply of reality television.

Frank decides that offing himself is a good solution. While attempting to end it all with a handgun in mouth, he’s distracted by this obnoxious rant of this piece of shit reality star super bitch teenager who naturally has her own TV show. She’s famous for abusing her parents, picking on unpopular kids, telling all that she’s beautiful and has lots of money. He decides that killing her for essentially being unkind is something he needs to do before ending his own life. Frank (the everyday man’s superhero) decides to shoot her in the face as she’s getting into her expensive car after school.

He then teams up with a teenage schoolgirl who witnesses his act of decent murder. She (Roxy) eventually encourages him to dish out a range his vengence taking a road trip with her that essentially becomes a wonderful and completely justified spree of murders. Their victims include of society scumbags such as:

  • the shithead that takes up two car parking spaces
  • retarded teens won’t stop talking during a movie
  • the anti gay fuckers who protest gay funerals
  • Glenn Beck type, right wing antichrists who spread hate of all minorities.

The point of all of this this is, low movie speaks volumes to me. While it won’t appeal to all, it certainly strikes a chord for those that ever desired to take the law into their own hands and stand up against shitty behaviour.

Let’s Kill James Cameron & Avatar Sequels

Robert Patrick found success with his portraya...
Back when I knew how to make movies

If you liked Avatar you’re either a moron or.. no, you’re just a moron. I sense you’d be entertained by a Smurfs sequel or toys for children up to 5 years. And that argument of “it was visually awesome” is like saying to your friends she had a great body but couldn’t tie shoelaces.

Well good news for you, James Cameron will pollute the cinema world with 2 or 3 more Avatar sequels.

In a recent statement to the NY Times, James Cameron stated that he’s only in the Avatar business now and planning to make 2, 3 and possibly 4. Obviously this once-upon-a-time-ago great director is happy churning out more shit movies from a franchise that should never have been given life in the first place.

Let me channel what JC was actually thinking while uttering this threat to modern day cinema:

JC Voice: I’m only in the Avatar business now
JC Brain: I’m only interest in making movies that will earn me a shitload of cash, regardless of whether they’re aimed at stimulating the minds of children under 8 and adults that like pretty colours. I’ve essentially guaranteed myself  I’ll never have to worry about pesky things like plot, good character development and writing a script that doesn’t make semi intelligent people want to vomit.

JC Voice: These films allow me to say “everything” he needs to say about “the state of the world.”
JC Brain: I now have such a limited view of the world, that it can be only depicted by embarrassingly the most unimaginative creation in the history of film but hey, the kids might think about recycling and not mowing down forests that they’ll never visit.

JC Voice: But I’ll consider still making documentaries.
JC Brain: I know I’m going to get super bored, so what I’ll do is film myself doing really expensive things that will show that I’m quite an interesting guy and have real concerns about the planet. A shame it was that my trip to the bottom of the ocean didn’t help me find no new characters for Avatar 2 though.

JC Voice: I’ll probably make Avatar 2, 3 and possibly 4.
JC Brain: Damn, I hope this works out better than it did for Michael Bay. Transformers 2 and 3 sucked balls. Maybe after 4 movies, I’ll at least get one of these right and reacquire critical acclaim as I did with Aliens and T2. Fuck! Who am I kidding? I forgot… I’m a total hack now that lost my way a decade ago.

While this may seem like a hateful rant (and it is), what hurts the most is James Cameron is responsible for 2 of my favourite movies of all time and unfortunately 2 of my most hated movies of all time. Loved – Aliens and Terminator 2, Hated – Avatar and Titanic. I seriously sense that he has a split personality syndrome as the same man can’t make movies of such great variance.

Now that he’s only interested in cashing up, we get 3 more fucking Avatar sequels! Holy crap. I hear the sequel is due in 2016, that’s good I guess, I won’t have to kill myself for another 4 years.

Tarantino way to describe your crap day

Tarantino  Pulp Fiction & Reservoir Dogs
I had a "oh man I shot Marvin in the face" day

The details of why my day was so horrendous isn’t really important (as I have way too many of these to report on them regularly and bore my limited reader group) but it led me to develop a self depreciating way to rate my day by using a comparable scenes from Quentin Tarantino movies. At least something productive comes from pain huh?

(Pulp Fiction) “oh man I shot Marvin in the face” kind of day = this is where you’ve done something stupid, probably unintentionally and now have to scoop up all those little pieces of brain and skull from the back seat.

(Reservoir Dogs) “torture you? that’s a good idea, I like that” kind of day = you’ve had a unpleasant encounter with someone, are super pissed off and have spent the greater part of your day planning the execution of a perfect revenge scenario.

(True Romance) “I’m not a whore. I’m a call-girl. There’s a difference, you know?” kind of day = you doubt that what you do for employment amounts to anything yet feel compelled to justify to it is worth a damn and you’re not just a cheap whore (which of course you are and will always be).

(Inglorious Basterds) “What a tremendously hostile world that a rat must endure” kind of day = where you feel you’re just barely getting by and surviving on very minimal contributions of positivity that life dishes out.

(Kill Bill Vol 2) “I love you kiddo but sometimes you can be a real ….” kind of day = when the people you love inflict incredible pain on you, especially the kiddos

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Still complaining about the Oscars… one year on

Italiano: Stella di Meryl Streep sulla Hollywo...
No one comes close

Last year to the day, I was super annoyed that Inception didn’t win the Best Picture Oscar and hence through my rage, I started a blog to address this injustice in the hopes of starting a ground swell of public outcry to force the reversal of this decision. With a total of 3 readers rallying by my side, I couldn’t quite make this happen – sorry Leo my man.

Anyway, against the wisdom that I should employ in my daily life, I chose to watch the Oscars and found myself significantly less annoyed. I think I must be in a more apathetic place plus I think I’ve watched about 10 movies this year and can’t really cast an opinion on stuff I’ve not seen. To clarify, I saw one out from the nine movies nominated this year and that movie suck ass big fucking time. Guess.. anyone? The Tree of Life. Holy crap wasn’t this the most overated piece of confusing, mind bending and slow motion captured fluff ever made in the history of film? Surely with Brad Pitt and Sean Penn on hand, something signficantly more interesting could have eventuated (examples; se7en, 21 grams, fight club, carlito’s way).

So a few things I observed:

Jennifer Lopez is amazing for 42. I know everyone is currently obsessed staring at her nipples but damn she’s so pretty. I’ve come across this phenomena late in life (i.e. the last few years) and ashamedly discovered her watching Idol (there goes my one reader, dang it).

Billy Crystal should be forced to host every year till death. Sure he was corny at times but he’s leagues better than anyone else I’ve seen. After that dumb ass Cirque Du Soleil bit his “we’re a pony away from a bar mitzvah” line was funny, no? Am I the only one?

Meryl Streep is the greatest actor or actress of all god damn time (see The Deer Hunter). Name me a movie (be it great or not) where she sucked, one time..go on.. one time. That’s right MF, back off now.

I thought Nick Nolte was really good in Warrior. If you had to have an alcoholic father you could do much worse than Paddy Conlon (Paddy.. great name). And I get that a UFC based movie would never get nominated (snobs) even if it was like totally entertaining.

Why wasn’t The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo nominated for best film? Is wasn’t better than the horse movie. I really liked it and Rooney Mara was interesting – that rape scene was pretty rough to watch. By the way, if you’re sensitive to these types of scenes (and if you’re not, please stop reading and go find a bridge now) never, never watch Irreversable (still scarred).

I liked that Bret McKenzie (Conchords) won an Oscar for the Muppets (Best Song). Funny that there were only 2 songs nominated. I felt kind of the same way last year when watching Trent Reznor win last year. Guess they didn’t think much of the remade version of Immigrant Song with that chick from the Yeah Yeah Yeahs (see below).

 

Anyway, probably not the most comprehesive review of cinema’s night of nights but then I’ve spent most of my last 12 months addicted to what I’m feeling is the Golden Age of Television. In my opinion, there’s a lot better watching to be had with the likes of Breaking Bad, The Walking Dead, Sons Of Anarchy, Community, Homeland. These are better than an movies I’ve seen over the past year.

Technology that depreciates life – level crossing

Ramsbottom level crossing being opened to road...
One train, two trains..

I’m not sure that a railroad level crossing actually qualifies as a legitimate piece of technology. At some point in time (maybe the 1800s if I’m to use AMC’s Hell on Wheels as my historical reference) this piece of antiquated tech was considered actual technology as it prevented cars from mostly colliding with oncoming trains (except for the end of Back to Future 3) and so I suppose it still does but… WTF.

Scenario, I’m driving to work on potentially one of the worst traffic days in recorded history. Reason.. a city I live in is completely dependent on the smooth operation of a major highway which inbound suburban traffic to the city centre and some idiot crashes a truck into a bridge support closing off traffic at about 8am on I what I vaguely recall to be a Monday morning. So, traffic is crippled city-wide and I’m attempting to find the least aggravating method of getting to work in less than say 2 hours (compared to my regular commute of 45 minutes).

Somehow I manage to get through the worst of it, a few non standard deviations from my normal route and I’m surprisingly making great time, contrary to what I anticipated. That is until I come up to a railway level crossing about 7 minutes from my destination. As I’m approaching, I actually have the opportunity as the red lights flashing and bell ringing to get across but think, oh well, I should be law-abiding etc and I stop as the boom gates lower in front of my car. Unknowingly (as I’ve yet not been able to find a way of predicting the future), this is where I’m to spend the next 25 minutes in my car stationary (or is it stationery – seriously why does the English language need to have to have identically sounding words meaning different things?).

Why am I there for 25 minutes? I couldn’t really work this out either. My expectation of the duration of my stay at a level crossing is say 3 minutes, 5 tops with the need to give way to 1 train, 2 if you’re unlucky. So I’m sitting in my car, one train goes past and I think, good.. up you go boom gates, let me outta here. Nope, the lights keep flashing, bells keeps ringing and I wait for about 5 minutes, it’s a long god damn five minutes when you’ve got nowhere to go. Then another train from the other direction passes.. ok, fine.. up gates up? And still, nothing.

So my aggravation levels start to pick up and I’m thinking.. how many fucking trains do I have to wait for here and more importantly, can’t they lift the friggin’ gates and let the about 100 vehicles banking up behind me go past in between passing trains? This went on for 4 trains and and some pretty long intermissions. At this stage one starts thinking, the gates are broken as there’s no way that a intelligent system is keeping cars motionless for this long. So I call the number on the boom gates which says something along the lines of “in case of faults, please call blah blah and reference boom gate number XXX”.

Given I can’t fucking go anywhere i.e. down gates in front of me and about 5,000 cars behind me, I call the number. Get some guy on the other end and say, I think there’s a problem with boom gate XXX, I’ve been here for over 25 minutes and y’know, would like to get out of here. He replies, sir.. (I don’t like the sir when I’m pissed of, it’s not helpful, if I was really a sir I wouldn’t be watching me life pass before me for absolutely no reason) I don’t have any report of any fault at that particular gate. I reply (calmly), well about 4 trains have passed with some long gaps in between, surely that can’t be normal). Then he dares to respond.. actually sir, the gates are scheduled to be down to allow up to 5 trains to pass at this point in time, we appreciate your patience. WHAT, is planned and normal? Apparently it was as after the 5th train passed, the gate lifted.

So, moral of the story, when you think you’re getting ahead, don’t be so sure. Worst traffic day ever, clever driving which defies the odds as I near work and then, remain motionless because a stupid fucking train line crosses a major road that I happen be on.

Why can’t they bury all the god damn train lines that remain above ground, like in most developed cities in the world. This would never happen in Tokyo.

Who is Natalie Tyler Tran?

I used to think the You Tube served no purpose except to waste people’s time at work. Not that it doesn’t and not that wasting time at work isn’t a noble pursuit but.. anyway I’ve quickly deviated off topic which is the frustration of having a keenly developed (or easily distracted) mind.

Anyway prior to be introduced to Australia’s most popular You Tuber (is that what a You Tube video poster is referred to? If not, copyright that), I really believed You Tube was for watching footage of Jennifer Hawkins‘ wardrobe malfunction or latest Lovable Lingerie TV ad. Again, if this is the second time you’ve heard this name from reading my blog and you still don’t know who I’m talking about, please stop reading and remedy this immediately.

How I discovered this You Tube juggernaut is not that interesting. In a nutshell, was looking up news on the latest Comic-Con and an amusing, self deprecating video of this Australian (yet suspiciously Asian looking) so incredibly excited to be in LA experiencing geek heaven first hand – I was most jealous but drawn in by her enthusiasm.

Here’s the summary.. Natalie Tyler Tran has the most subscribed channel (“Community Channel”) in Australia, she’s funny (of course that’s subjective, so please watch the below and form your own view), charming and her observations are strange yet mostly true.

I hope she gets her own TV show one day… truly talented, non Kardashians deserve success too – and Natalie does this without having a leaked sex tape.