Friday, January 23, 2009

Academy Award nominees

I cannot believe how boring and worthless the Academy Award nominees are this year. I mean, normally it's not without its share of awful choices, and I haven't seen The Reader or Frost/Nixon, but it seems like they were especially negligent in their decision-making this time around. Revolutionary Road (which I will write about at length soon) got some attention at the Golden Globes, which normally fails at generally any standard of taste, and here it's totally snubbed except for one category - Best Supporting Actor. This is the one category that actually makes sense and brings attention to some amazing roles.

Josh Brolin in Milk really stole the fucking show, and Michael Shannon is incredible in Revolutionary Road. I think it's goofy but awesome that Robert Downey Jr. got nominated, because he was so good playing the multiple roles in Tropic Thunder. It's funny because he's playing the Australian actor who brings weight to the movie in the movie, but Downey actually does anchor the picture with his talent and elevates it beyond what could be just watching someone do a goofy impersonation (e.g. Tom Cruise).

If the rest of the nominees had been like this one category, we'd have an interesting year. But we don't, and I'm not going to watch 3-4 hours of Benjamin goddamned Button clips.

Friday, January 16, 2009

I have a goal for this year

(Edit: Fantastic Fest would be amazing, too. I knew I was forgetting another Austin festival. Much cheaper than SXSW.)

I would love to go to a film festival. Preferably SXSW, which would also fulfill visiting Austin this year. I just realized Sundance started and I had totally thought about going this time last year. SXSW would be great.

If I had five cities to go to this year, they'd be:

Washington, D.C.
San Fransisco
(New York, again)

Thursday, January 15, 2009

What's in store

2009 is a very vague year. New president, yeah, of course. 2007 was the year of graduation, 2008 was the year of getting married. This year is blank and unwritten. It's a year without expectation, that's going to carve itself into whatever it is and be defined by that. Promise, yeah, but not the scary kind. When...

Sorry, just had an awkward conversation with a coworker. I was in a good headspace, but I guess he wasn't ready for candor and a tinge of mania. Anyway.

When you have a bit of motivation, I guess you just go and see what you can do.

I noticed I did better reading than keeping up with music last year, and even better than I did with movies (which I'm still catching up on). I feel like I'm on course to get those three balanced, which'd be grand. I don't think we ever stop being students, which is pretty obvious. For me, all of this is about enrichment. I don't want to go back to school, because the discovering is the fun part. Going out and feeling it out. Your friends are your teachers, introducing you to something new and explaining it. And teaching yourself is a lot of fun, too.

2009 has an air of freedom to it; we can really do whatever we want. Things feel new. I'm about to finish Money by Martin Amis. I'll finish it on the bus ride home. It definitely swirved and avoided where I thought it was going. Animal Collective's Merriweather Post Pavillion has that new feeling to it. And these shootings, yeah, they're new territory as well.

Thursday, January 1, 2009

Best of 2008

This has taken about two days to write. A lot to account for in such an epic year. Personally, it's been the craziest year ever, planning a wedding and getting married to my best friend, creating my first feature film, electing a president and so forth. Anyway.

- joined Twinhead
- went to New Zealand
- tornado hit our future neighborhood (I was in East Atlanta and drove through rubble to get Katie)
- made Loaded Guns: The Movie
- moved to Cabbagetown
- Donkey Punch
- first and best vacation ever with Katie's family
- Twinhead's 5th
- Wedding!
- Honeymoon in Paris
- started at Aurora
- elected Barack Obama president
- ran 26:55 at Romp and Stomp
- Choose Your Adventure

- Los Angeles
- Auckland and Christchurch, New Zealand
- Charleston and Isle of Palms, South Carolina
- Paris, France
- Blue Ridge, GA

CDs (faves near the top):
- Fleet Foxes self-titled
- TV on the Radio - Dear Science,
- Sigur Ros - Með Suð Í Eyrum Við Spilum Endalaust
- Deerhunter - Microcastles (funny, I didn't realize the LP I got for Katie had Weird Era Cont. inside of it. The friggin disc is thinner than Bradford Cox (what a hip joke))
- MGMT - Oracular Spectacular
- Mountain Goats - Heretic Pride

- Harry Potter and the
-Prisoner of Azkaban
-Goblet of Fire
-Order of the Phoenix
-Half-Blood Prince
-Deathly Hallows
- Turn of the Screw
- Watchmen
- The Road

Movies...I haven't come close to seeing the films I wanted to see from last year. For now, I will just list my favorites that I did off the top of my head, in a rough order:
- The Dark Knight
- Pineapple Express
- Tropic Thunder
- Doubt

That's really about it, sadly. This year is not so hot for smaller films, but I have to say that it's the first time ever I've listed, and will probably keep, films as broad and mainstream as The Dark Knight, Pineapple Express, and Tropic Thunder, not because I've been an ass before, but because these kinds of movies were finally good!

Overall, I did slightly better keeping up with music and did incredibly better reading this year. I'm really proud of the amount of reading I did, but looking back it doesn't seem like so much. However, these are all seriously vast improvements over the last few years. I can't see going backwards in 2009, but only doing better. If anything I lagged a little in the film department, but I did rent a fair amount this year. Let's not forget, I was also planning a wedding.

Films have been a bit off this year, but who knows what I'll think after I see Frost/Nixon, Revolutionary Road, The Reader, Valkyrie, Snow Angels (on dvd), Let the Right One In, I've Loved You So Long, The Curious Case of Benjamin Button, The Wrestler, and maybe Slumdog Millionaire and Gran Torino. Still seems weak, weak, weak. Music was incredibly good, with some solid releases from some faves and some amazing debuts (Fleet Foxes and MGMT). I wish I could've heard more, but I'm glad I'm actually staying current and not playing catch-up like in years past. I'm looking forward to the new Mastodon album, which is already sounding obtuse and wonderful.

I was really happy with everything I read. "Turn of the Screw" was a bit boring, but still worth reading some classic text. I absolutely loved HP and "The Road" and "Watchmen," all amazing experiences. I'm looking forward to next year's slate which includes:

- The Audacity of Hope
- John Adams
- Outliers
- The Last Lecture

I hope to squeeze in a few classics that I managed to avoid reading in high school, like Great Expectations. Anyway, here's to a great year.