Sunday, December 31, 2006
The Year In Film, 2006
In which V counts down the five best films she saw this year.

5. Marie Antoinette
2006 was a pretty bleak year for films overall, and I was hard pressed to come up with five. Marie Antoinette was great, but in a better year I think it would just miss out on being Top Five material. I liked it, though. I tend to like opulent period films in general, but this one was particularly accessible. The music was fun. I'd see it again.

4. Snakes on a Plane


3. Night Watch/Day Watch
I'm putting these two films together because they're two parts of a whole, really, like the Star Wars films or Lord of the Rings. Put aside any preconceptions you have about Russian cinema - each of these films has a big fat budget and loads of top quality effects. And the story is frigging AWESOME. This series is some of the most original horror I've seen in years. I can't recommend this enough.

2. The Proposition
Nick Cave's grim redemption tale is a true piece of art in every sense of the word. A fascinating glimpse into Australia's violent beginnings. This is a total must-see, even if you don't typically go for the western genre.

1. The Prestige
Not just the best film of the year, this is one of the best films I've seen in the past decade, possibly one of the best films I've seen in my entire life. It made one hell of an impact. I saw it with my mom, who was also completely impressed and declares it to be an instant classic. If you haven't seen this film, DON'T go looking for reviews or spoilers or anything like that. Just wait for the DVD and watch it. It's one of those films like Fight Club or The Sixth Sense... the less you know going in, the more you'll get out of it. Trust me on this. And definitely see it.
Thursday, December 28, 2006
V's List of Celebrity Doom
In which we take time out from post-holiday cookie baking to ponder something fairly ghoulish.

I got hit with this one by Eli. Thanks, Eli.

1. Pick ten celebrities who you think will die in from 1/1/07 to 1/1/08
2. You aren't allowed to murder the celebrity.
2.5 Saddam Hussein doesn't count.
3. The point system works like this: you get one point for every year UNDER the age of 90 that the celebrity dies at. Anyone over 90 gets negative points.
4. Whoever gets the most points, wins.

1. Bea Arthur
2. Brad Renfro
3. Natasha Lyonne
4. Axl Rose
5. Angela Lansbury
6. Stephen Hawking
7. Anyone involved with Jackass
8. Liz Taylor
9. Mike Tyson
10. Tara Reid

My gut instinct said "Pete Doherty" and "Lindsay Lohan" but that's just too easy.
Saturday, December 23, 2006
Codename V has the plague
Or something very much like the plague. I'm mainly sleeping, or shuffling about like a zombie and saying "ugggggh". Forming coherent sentences is difficult, but I don't want to just neglect my blogging duties. So, here are some trailers for a few films that I am very (very) eager to see.

Perfume by Patrick Suskind is my favorite book of all time. If you've not read this, you really ought to. They've made a film of it, and I want to see it so badly I might, like, pee my pants or something. Without giving too much away, there is something peculiar about the main character, and it isn't really addressed in the trailer. I kind of wonder if this particular thing is even going to be part of the film at all. Never mind, it still looks freakin' AWESOME.

Frank Miller's 300, people. What's not to love? I'm counting the days until this one. The music in this trailer kicks ass. I thought the music in Sin City also kicked ass. Frank Miller kicks ass. And, like, Spartans also kick ass. So there.

HELL YEAH!! This is going to rule. Now if only they'd make Breakin' 3....

This and Die Hard come out on the same day. I won't know what to do with myself. Because they're MORE THAN MEETS THE EYE, people. Yes, I'm a geek. Shut up.

Thursday, December 21, 2006
Christmas Wishes from Codename V
In which V comes to realize that 'non-drowsy' really means 'this cold medicine is going to keep you awake all night' and tries to find constructive uses for her time.

For your enjoyment, the uncensored version of my new favorite holiday song.

It's capsule review time!
In which V has seen, like, half a dozen films this week.

1. Apocalypto
Mel Gibson is batshit crazy, and a racist, and prone to revising history. I would not like to meet the guy, or shake hands with him, or have a conversation about politics or the state of society. BUT. He makes damn good movies. Braveheart was really awesome, revisionist history aside.

Apocalypto did not disappoint. I like Mayans. I like adventure. I like peril. I like subtitles. And I like ultraviolence. Apocalypto had all of this and more. It was long (like, two and a half hours) but it was fast paced and didn't feel like a long movie. The only problem I had at all, was this one scene wherein people are attacked by a jaguar, and it's a hand puppet. Like, an obvious hand puppet with little googly jaguar eyes, grabbing people by the arm and going GRRR! GRRR!

That was pretty inexplicable, considering that the other special effects were gorgeous and the film obviously had a massive budget. Loads of attention to detail, except for the crap hand puppet.

I give it four out of five stars. Go see it.

2. Texas Chainsaw Massacre: The Beginning
Do you like horror movies? Did you like the previous remake/sequel in the Texas Chainsaw series? If yes to either, you will probably like this. I know I sure did.

There is not much else to say. People die. Horribly. I give it two enthusiastic thumbs up and four out of five stars (on the horror film scale, you can't really rate horror films on the same scale as, like, Citizen Kane). Go see it.

3. Turistas
Do you like horror movies? Did you like Hostel? If yes to either, you will probably like this. It was fun, if predictable.

In Hostel, asshole tourists get slaughtered for fun by rich foreign men who simply love sadism. In Turistas, asshole tourists get slaughtered for their organs by rich foreign men who want to help Brazilian orphans. In either case, most of the people getting slaughtered aren't very likeable, so it's fairly satisfying to watch them die. Horribly.

I give it three out of five stars (four, if it hadn't been a Hostel clone). Go see it.

4. The Fountain
This was the worst film I have ever seen in my entire life. Seriously. People on the IMDB seem to think that if you don't like this film, it's because you're stupid and you don't "get" it because it's so deeply and profoundly symbolic.

Um, no. It's not profoundly ANYTHING. It's 90 minutes of meandering, self-indulgent crap. Hugh Jackman does tai-chi in his jammies. He hugs a tree. He floats around in a big soap bubble. This is not avant-garde. This is stupid.

I give it negative one out of five stars. Avoid.

5. Flushed Away
Funny. Very very funny. On a par with Wallace & Grommit in the Curse of the Were-Rabbit. If you like Wallace & Grommit, you will like this. I laughed through the whole thing, especially at the slugs.

Four out of five stars. Go see it.

6. Eragon

BWAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA. This is based on a book written by a fifteen year old kid who played a lot of Dungeons and Dragons and IT SHOWS. It's derivative of EVERYTHING.

I don't know where to start. Go here and check out his characters' names. Ajihad? A-JIHAD?? Galbratorix?? I like how he throws in "Angela" like it's normal.

I haven't read the book (imagine that) so I didn't realize that his crappy dragon could talk. TALK. So I'm sitting there and all of a sudden his crappy dragon starts TALKING in this prissy little bitch voice. Oh Eragon, I will never abandon you!

A talking dragon, people. I am at a loss.

Oh, and he could use magic on account of he had a bond with his talking dragon. Yeah, I know... Eragon was full of arbitrary shit like that, things that seemed to exist only to push the plot forward. But magic, yeah... he could use magic, but first he had to learn the Elvish words for things. His mentor taught him the words for "tree" and "branch". Apparently the Elvish word for "see what my crappy dragon sees" is Souvlaki-Flan. I am not kidding. I wish I was.

I give this two out of five stars, because while it was a shitty fantasy movie, as unintentional comedy it was quite entertaining. Go see it, but with the frame of mind that it's a parody of fantasy films.
Thursday, December 14, 2006
*insert evil laugh here*
Here is a diabolically funny video which M found and emailed to me. It's similar to the whole "make your Sims pee themselves to death" concept, but on a much bigger scale.

Tuesday, December 12, 2006
The Killers have done a novelty Christmas song. I think it's for that trendy new (RED) charity. Not that I have a problem with charity, but things that generate a lot of hype really bug me. When Oprah devotes an entire show to going shopping with Bono for a shitload of cheesy (RED) branded items, it's maybe an indication that your charity has jumped the shark. Just saying.

Anyway. Killers. Novelty Christmas Song. I don't think I like it. It's kind of lame. Musically, very good. A good song with cheesy lame Christmas lyrics. Maybe you'll like it. Make up your own mind.

Monday, December 11, 2006
Why, God? Whyyyyy...
In which V reviews another requested film, and for approximately 90 minutes life becomes meaningless and almost painful.

The latest requested film is Intermedio. Ironically, I actually considered renting this a few times. It actually sounded kind of intriguing. But then I noticed it was coming on the Sci-Fi Channel, which is known for airing utter crap. Intermedio is, indeed, utter crap.

You start out with a couple of asshole guys going into a series of caves/tunnels via a trap door. Presumably this is in Mexico somewhere, and presumably they are on some kind of drug run. They have left two little kids in the car. Because obviously you take the toddlers along when you go on your Mexican drug runs. That's called "parenting".

While they're in the tunnels, some old coot with a necklace full of blood drops some of that blood on the ground. Suddenly these weird CGI ghost things appear and kill the two asshole guys. INTERMEDIO!

Cut to 18 years later. A group of young trailer-trash people are discussing their new handgun. One of them is a random big-boobed slut. One of them is that kid from Terminator 2. And one of them is Tara The Dead Lesbian Witch From Buffy The Vampire Slayer. This is not Quality. Their hyperactive friend shows up. He wants to go into the Mexican Tunnels to get 200 pounds of pot. The trailer-trash kids spend a lot of time discussing the moral implications of this, and eventually decide to go along with it because "after all, it's not cocaine." Niiiice.

But wait! There's more! OMG it turns out that the two asshole guys from the start are the dads of two of the trailer kids. The kids want to earn some serious drug money, but also are motivated by a need to know what happened to their dads. This is deep.

They drive to Mexico. They are about to go into the hole when Hyperactive Friend says, out of freakin' nowhere, "they say if you catch a drop of a dead man's blood before it hits the ground, you get eternal protection!" Um. Okay. Thanks for that tidbit. I hate it when horror films make up their own convoluted mythology like that. Hyperactive then adds, "you can even control the dead!" K, thx again. I will keep that in mind, as you have just employed an awkward narrative device.

Once they get inside the cave, Hyperactive feels compelled to point out that some crazy old man killed his son down in the tunnels some years back. And then he tells them about the Intermedio who are stuck between life and death and want to kill anyone who comes into the cave. THANKS AGAIN, JACKHOLE. Okay readers, just hypothetically, let's say you are about to go cave exploring with friends. One of your friends starts babbling about a dead man's blood and controlling the dead, and someone being murdered in that very cave, and probably the Intermedio will kill you. Do you stick around? Or do you say "thanks for the spelunking invite, jackhole. But I think I'm going to take a pass because you're being FUCKING CREEPY."

See, I go for the second option. But the trailer-trash kids all stick around. But they spend a lot of time discussing the moral implications of all of this. Once they've been in the cave for about ten seconds, Lesbian Witch already manages to get Separated From The Group. She sticks her hand into some random hot spring and says "ow" just before her friends find her and scare the pee out of her. They all have a laugh about that, and then take some time out to further discuss the moral implications of being in the cave.

Elsewhere, a guy with a pickaxe is going around busting the lightbulbs that have been strung up inside the tunnels. Breaking lightbulbs! That's spooooky. No it's not.

Before too much longer, they meet up with their drug dealer contacts. Pickaxe Man is watching the whole thing go down, and is playing with his Magic Necklace. He drops some blood from it, and suddenly an Intermedio appears and kills one of the drug dealers by materializing a chain and shoving it through the drug dealer's eye. Does this make sense? NO. The four trailer-trash kids and the remaining drug dealer make a run for it, and then pause to discuss the moral implications of what has just happened.

Hyperactive Boy goes off on his own. He steps into a hole and starts yelling. Slut shows up just in time to see him get sucked through the hole and then the hole disappears. Hyperactive Boy ends up back at the start of the cave. Hey, doesn't that happen in Legend of Zelda sometimes? He tries to get out through the trap door, but it's blocked from the outside by the body of a dead Mexican guy.

Elsewhere, Terminator is seriously hamming it up for the camera. He is waving his arms around dramatically and shouting JESUS CHRIST! The plot deteriorates into lots of arguing and wandering around. Someone else needs to die soon, because these people are all pissing me off. Pickaxe Man drops some of his Magic Blood just in time, and Lesbian Witch gets killed by an Intermedio in another implausible fashion. This time, Intermedio materializes a circular saw blade and chops her in half. Her torso twitches around comically for a while before she dies. Nice.

Run run run. Hyperactive Boy gets caught by some hands that come out of the wall, but he gets away almost instantly. What's the point? They make it to something called a 'safe house', places where you can enter or leave the tunnels in case the police are after you. They're all happy for a while because they think they're getting away, but the door to the outside has been boarded up and padlocked. OMG! It's to keep the Intermedio from getting out!

Meanwhile, some mysterious boy is lurking around unseen.

Hyperactive Boy decides that this would be a good time to smoke some pot. Because, hey, that never got anyone killed in a horror film. GREAT IDEA, DUMBASS. Almost instantly he gets pickaxed in the back by Intermedio. At around the same time, Drug Dealer #2 gets his tongue ripped out by another Intermedio. Or maybe it's the same one, who can tell.

Just when you think it's all down to Terminator and Slut, Hyperactive Boy shows up badly hurt but alive. He is still all about smoking pot. He launches into some tedious diatribe about how he's misled them, he's the reincarnation of someone who saw the Intermedio kill a bunch of people 20 years ago. Also he knows he's dying and y'all should just go on, SAVE YOURSELVES, blah blah blah, leave me here to die. Yawn.

Just before I dozed off, Pickaxe Man drops some more Magic Blood and Hyperactive Boy dies for real. Terminator and Slut run away and end up locked inside a bedroom. There are copies of a newspaper clipping all over the wall about a young drug dealer kid who died in the tunnels like 30 years ago. OMG it's the kid who's been following them around. They break through the bedroom door and escape. They go through a crawlspace and end up in a Pit Full Of Bodies.

The dead kid shows up. He's nice. He shows them how to get out of the tunnels. They make it back to their car, but don't have the keys. They go to the house where they went down into the trap door to start with, and who should be there but Pickaxe Man. Since they never saw his face, they don't know that he's the one who's been sending the Intermedio after them and also trying to kill them with his pickaxe.

He acts all sympathetic and gives them a ride in his truck. He gives Slut a beer and starts talking to them about his son who died. He was a good kid who got mixed up in the wrong things and was "killed by sluts and junkies LIKE YOU!" He stabs Terminator in the leg with a really long nail, and meanwhile Slut has passed out from the poisoned beer that he gave her.

FLASHBACK! The son wasn't killed by drug dealers! He was killed by HIS OWN DAD for reasons that are totally unclear. Pickaxe Man kills his son and then steals the son's Magic Necklace. Maybe that was his motive, I dunno.

Anyway, Terminator and Slut end up back in the body pit. WILL THIS EVER END? They escape AGAIN. They meet up with the dead kid AGAIN. He shows them the way out AGAIN. They run into Pickaxe Man and Slut tells him that they met his dead son and that he's really nice. Pickaxe Man gets angry about that. He and Slut get into a fistfight. She takes away his Magic Necklace and gives it to a random Intermedio who may or may not be the ghost of her dad. The Intermedio breaks the necklace and eats the old man.

Slut and Terminator get away. They end up in a motel somewhere and it is implied that they have had sex. OMG it's OVER it's ALL OVER. They are going to go to Disney World now because that will be fun! But wait! Their dead friends are watching them from outside the window! They're Intermedios now! THIS WILL NEVER BE OVER.
Sunday, December 10, 2006
Didn't I just do this?
In which V gets a bit of deja vu. Thanks for that, Eli.

1. Grab the book closest to you.
2. Open to page 123, go down to the fifth sentence.
3. Post the text of next 3 sentences on your blog.
4. Name of the book and the author.
5. Tag three people.

Sigh. I'm going to cheat and get the book *second* closest to me, as I don't want to abuse The Batman Handbook again.

The snow continued to fall. Then he put a peaked blue cap on, and velcroed a patch to the breast pocket of his jacket. 'A1 Security' was written on the cap and the patch.

From American Gods by Neil Gaiman.

Tag three people? I don't KNOW three people. M can do this if he wants, and Lisa, and... um... yeah. I'm out of people. Deal with it.

Is this actually interesting to people? Seriously?
Friday, December 08, 2006
Music for your weekend
I have a massive toothache today, and I'm starting to wonder if it's a physical manifestation of my MASSIVE ANGST. In honor of my angst, have some PIL.

Random nonsense to pass the time.
In which V fills out one of those survey thingies that someone emailed her this morning.

1. Grab the book nearest to you, turn to page 18, and find line 4.
"...identity as Bruce Wayne. Batman's gloves are also customized with an intergral..."
(from The Batman Handbook. I am so transparent.)

2. Stretch your left arm out as far as you can. What do you touch?
A bottle of contact lens solution. This is stupid.

3. What is the last thing you watched on TV?
Oh, oh. It was awesome. "Crimes That Shook The World" or something like that on the Discovery Channel. It was all about the real-life serial killer case that inspired the film Wolf Creek.

4. Without looking, guess what time it is.
Uh, 1:30?

5. Now look at the clock. What is the actual time?
Uh, 1:27. This is stupid. Who writes this shit?

6. With the exception of the computer, what can you hear?

7. When did you last step outside ? What were you doing?
Er, about two hours ago. I returned some videos...

8. Before you started this survey, what did you look at?

I LOOKED INTO THE EMPTINESS OF MY OWN SOUL OMG. I think this is the biggest waste of time I've ever seen. But I'm still filling it out, and I'm going to post it to my blog, so what does that say about me?

9. What are you wearing?

A clown suit, roller skates, and a battered sombrero.

10. Did you dream last night?
Not that I can recall.

11. When did you last laugh?

I have no need for laughter, puny mortal!! Um, I mean, last night whilst watching My Name Is Earl.

12. What is on the walls of the room you are in?

13. Seen anything weird lately?
Apart from Britney Spears' vagina?

14. What do you think of this quiz?
Very little.

15. What is the last film you saw?
Underworld Evolution.

16. If you became a multi-millionaire overnight, what would you buy?

The Batmobile. And Mars. And maybe an ab-roller.

17. Tell me something about you that I don't know.

18. If you could change one thing about the world, regardless of guilt or politics, what would it be?
Everyone would have to wear MC Hammer pants all the time.

19. Do you like to dance?
No. No, I don't.

20. George Bush

Technically this isn't a question.

21. Imagine your first child is a girl, what do you call her?

22. Imagine your first child is a boy, what do you call him?
Also Hortense.

23. Would you ever consider living abroad?

24. What do you want God to say to you when you reach the pearly gates?

Help yourself to as many MC Hammer pants as you like.
Friday Baddie Blogging
This week's Baddie is Emily Valentine.

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OMG she burnt down the homecoming float. And she DID DRUGS. And this one time, she almost broke up Brandon and Kelly, because Brandon went to meet her at the airport and didn't tell Kelly the whole story! And then she ran away to France to become a marine biologist! OMG!

... I'm the only person who understands any of this, aren't I.
Tuesday, December 05, 2006
The results are in!
The results of the Human vs. Monkey poll are in, and an overwhelming majority of voters said that a monkey would totally kick a person's ass. Thus proving that the nature of Monkey is truly irrepressible.

Friday, December 01, 2006
Shameless Self-Promotion
I've been working on this for about a week now, and finished it up today. I showed it to M and he said I ought to post it here. So, here it is: an ink drawing of Mr. Sid Vicious. You can see a bigger (and slightly better quality) version of it at my DeviantART gallery.

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Music for your weekend
In which we go back in time to the era of college radio.

Friday Baddie Blogging
This week's baddie is Uber Megalodon. I was unable to resist.

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Here we have a group of Yacht Party Refugees flying into Uber Megalodon's mouth. The bags and filters on other sharks become hopelessly clogged, but Uber Megalodon never loses suction.