roXor media

martial arts, computers, dorks

Archive for April 2005

House of Flying Daggers

Crouching Tiger it ain�t. This movie is in the Crouching Tiger, Hero group. It�s a Kung-Fu film with a plot, well sort of. I think these films are becoming a new genre. I�ll call them Kung-Fu dramas. The problem with these films is that it�s very difficult to get both right. Unfortunately this movie gets neither right. That�s not to say the 3-4 fights scenes aren�t cool, but they are too few and too uninspired. The Plot is thin and drawn out over 2 hours. Plot twists seem inserted for padding, and a bit contrived. Overall, it wasn�t terrible, but I was board.

House of Flying Daggers, Grade: C

Written by Dan

April 25, 2005 at 4:44 pm

Posted in uncategorized

Napoleon Dynamite?

Well, I finally saw Napoleon Dynamite last night. It was a pretty good. Although, honestly I don’t think it was “gut-busting” funny. Maybe it’s because I’m a nerd and I related to well for it to be that funny. Anyway, it is a well done movie, although I noticed a few spots where they violated some rules of filming. I recommend it to anyone who has interest in watching a great character movie. Meaning, it’s the characters that make the movie, and not really the plot.

Okay, okay. You want me to point out a scene that violated some film rules. The scene with Uncle Rico and Kip talking out on the front porch is the one that comes to mind. In that scene, they framed the actors with very little lead space in the direction they are talking. It looked like their faces were going to bump up against the edge of the film. It gives you a strange sense of tension. For those of you who may not know what lead space is: When you frame a shot of someone moving/looking left or right, give some room in the direction they are moving/looking. If you don’t give them some lead room it just doesn’t look right. Try it some time and you’ll see what I mean.

I’ll give Napoleon Dynamite a B+. I loved the characters – especially the brother. Anyone who can talk like that and not laugh has GOT to be talented.

Written by Sterling

April 19, 2005 at 1:27 pm

Posted in uncategorized

Google video search

Google is adding video upload and search to the collection. I wonder how much drive space they’ll have for this?

https://upload.video.google.com/

Written by Dan

April 14, 2005 at 11:49 am

Posted in uncategorized

Subtitles

Many “movie” people poo-poo me when I say I don’t like subtitles. They say you don’t get the tone or inflection of the original actors, and the subtitles are a better translation.

Bullshit…

  1. The dub actors can be very good.
  2. The tone and inflection of a different culture could lead you to misread the actors.
  3. The subtitles are abbreviated, they need to be short enough to read quickly. You actually get a LESS accurate translation (try watching an English dubbed movie with the English subtitles turned on, Crouching Tiger is an excellent example).
  4. I like to watch the MOVIE!!! I don’t think I can get as involved in a movie if I’m always looking at the bottom of the screen reading subtitles (that’s what people make books for).

Please feel free to poo-poo me yourself, but you’ll still be wrong.

Written by Dan

April 14, 2005 at 11:01 am

Posted in uncategorized

CMU International Film Fest

Quick update. Dan and I went to the CMU International Film Festival. When we got there we discovered something interesting: An international film festival is NOT an independant film festival. You learn something new everyday.

Anyhow, we caught a showing of “His Secret Life” before we took off, as we really have more interest in movie shorts vs foreign language, full length features. The movie was very good. The story is about a woman who loses her husband to an auto accident (The guy gets creamed by a car ala Meet Joe Black). Unfortunately, the sfx for the accident was absolutely horrible. In fact, the whole audience laughed when he got hit because it looked so stupid. Anyhow, she discovers that he was leading a double life and had a gay lover on the side. Aside from the bad sfx and slow start, the movie was well done, well acted, and, if you know anything about the gay community, it gave a really good look into their culture. I’ll will slap the chick flick sticker on this one, however. But, I give it a solid B. If it were done in english (it’s subtitled), I’d have given it a B+.

Written by Sterling

April 14, 2005 at 9:11 am

Posted in uncategorized

DYI goodness

Damn, did I find a cool site today.

http://homebuiltstabilizers.com/

Maybe soon Sterling and I will give one of these a shot.

Edit:
Grrrrr, broken link (thanks Russ). Well try this one.

http://www-2.cs.cmu.edu/~johnny/steadycam/

Written by Dan

April 7, 2005 at 8:50 am

Posted in uncategorized

Sin City for the win

Okay, I’ll admit it, I never read the graphic novels. I didn’t know what to expect, except that this movie would “look like a comic book.” I wasn’t dissappointed; Sin City was fantastic! Dark, gritty and full of sin. My wife even liked it!

I was looking for some reviews, just to see what the word on the street is, when I stumbled across the review on FilmForce: Sin City. I read a small tidbit that reminded me that Robert Rodriguez is known for digitally shooting his films.

Beyond that, this film is so innovative that it should serve as the industry standard for shooting a digital film with live actors.

This should be a big fat reminder to all of us that digital film IS a legit medium. After Sin City, we’ll see it cropping up more and more on the big films.

Written by Sterling

April 5, 2005 at 11:38 am

Posted in uncategorized