1 07 2008

Out on DVD today is Paul Schrader’s Mishima: A Life in four Chapters. This is one of those movies that I saw in college and still sticks with me today. The beauty of the filming and the weaving of Yukio Mishima’s real life story with his fiction is just amazing.

Yukio Mishima is one of Japan’s greatest post-war authors. His books are stunning as was his nationalistic samurai views. I was introduced to his work by a college professor and some friends and dare to call him the Japanese Hemingway.

The New York Times writes a great, brief review of the film here. It’s definitely something to add to your Netflix queue.  And yes, that is really a picture of him!


Heat Wave, Tearing Me Apart

7 06 2008

Well it’s only 102 degrees here today, tomorrow, yesterday, for the week.  We’re in one of North Carolina’s freak June heat waves that seems to be hitting us every three years.  The only positive is that Señor Bebe is sleeping all night.  Yes, that means we put him down at 10:30pm and he wakes up in the morning like a human boy.   So while he’s napping and I’m watching Double Whammy, here’s the week as I saw it:

Let’s start in comics. I’ve got a new pile sitting next to me, but the first thing I tore into was Secret Invasion. Once again, we have a winner of an episode. At this point I have no clue who to trust.

  • Spoilers abound, but check out LOTRKing’s Commentary here.
  • I also have to mention Marvel’s new book, 1985. One of the coolest things is that the comic book store guy in the beginning. He’s the guy I buy my comics from. That’s right, Ultimate Comics, my friendly shop is drawn in all of its glory. Go say hi to Jon.

In movies, I have one film to talk about and I know there’s something wrong with me. I think that You Don’t Mess with the Zohan actually looks funny. Maybe I’m insane but the commercials make me laugh. At least it will likely come quickly to HBO (so I know I won’t pay to see it) AND Robert Smigel is one of the writers. However, I’m not the only person to be thinking about it:
The AVClub interviews Robert Smigel and reviews the movie.

In music, two things to note. First, I went to see Jacob Dylan live in Raleigh last night. It was a great show and his new album, while quiet is pretty good. It’s hard to beat seeing a musician of his ilk play in front of less than 300 people in a tiny club. Something though from the show bugged the hell out of me. The opening act, a local band named Wrecking Season had an iPod that they used to play in background synth music. What kind of bullshit is that? If you can’t play live without extra production, pack it up.

  • As a result I’m considering starting a music only blog to express my displeasure. I’ve even got the name for it: Rockist.

In books, more love for The Boat and V.S. Naipul has a lot to say.

Finally, in links, one of my favorite aggregators of links Electricity & Lust, pointed me to some fantastic stuff this week, including:

  • Short Fiction from Nabokovin the most recent New Yorker. I really need to attack my pile of them that dates back to February.
  • An author I love interviews a band I like as Tom Perrotta interviews the Hold Steady.
  • My music hero Bob Dylan likes Obama. As my father in law would say, it’s best to not know what people you like stand for or what they’re like in their private lives. Needless to say, I’m trying to find reasons to vote for Obama now that Hillary is out of the race (yes I’m one of those Democrats!)

I’m off to watch Cloverfield on Pay-per-View, attack a new (and old) pile of comics, finish up The Corrections, plant some cucumbers, watch the end of Battlestar Galactica Season 1, watch X from the Directv live series, and all the normal stuff for a weekend. Unfortunately I won’t be going to the Mudhoney show this week at the Cat’s Cradle.

Happy Memorial Day

25 05 2008

A horribly busy week followed by a three-day weekend means that my post this week will short and sweet.  Plus, Sean (the comic book geek in training) is next to me and kicking me in the ribs while I type.  I’m currently awaiting the new Black Angels album to come in the mail, but Amazon.com’s shipping is slow.  I’m starting to think they hold up super saver shipping to encourage people to pay more.  Again I ask my readers to let me know if there are any quality indy record stores out there with a good web pressence. 

First, let’s start with comics. i thought it was going to be a light comics week but then my pile grew yet again with all kinds of good stuff. Some day I’ll be sharing my thoughts on comics’ arcs from a year earlier, confusing everyone. In the meantime some place to check out include:

In music, a few things to note:

  • Mudhoney of all bands is getting some love. Their early work is being reissued, and they have a new album, The Lucky Ones coming out. It’s nice to see the best band who never got noticed by the public finally get some notice.
  • Tom Petty has gotten back together with Mudcrutch. I’ve heard some of it on Sirius and it’s not half bad.

In fiction, the New York Times remembered Ian Flemming, and One-Story has released issue #103.

Finally, who says that video games have no redeeming social value, suck up too much time and make kids fat?!? Now we have the Wii Fit.   Oh yeah, and I guess a few big movies have come out but something keeps stopping me from being able to go. Have a great weekend everyone!

First Chapter

17 05 2008

In Friday’s NY Times I was reading about Joseph O’Neill’s book Netherland. The story called it a Post 9/11 version of the Great Gatsby. While I’m tired of the tag “post 9/11,” I did like the fact that the first chapter of the book is available on the Times’ website. I’m going to add it it my Amazon wishlist. I’m also going to follow up with the Times’ book page more often.

Long Tired Week

27 04 2008

It’s been a weird, long week. I didn’t seem to get a lot of reading done and soaked in media mostly via the television. However, thinking back there are a number of things to talk about and share with my reader.

In technology, the Times’ Circuits section has once again pointed out some interesting tech items. First, the DYMO Disc Painter let’s you burn images right onto your CD or DVD without a label. While not everyone needs or could use it, I just thought it was cool.
Secondly, SanDisk’s Cruzer Titanium Plus is a nifty flash drive with a few tricks up its sleeve. It has some additional features including security and backup.

In television, I have to admit I’ve discovered a great show later than the rest of the universe. Battlestar Galactica is one of the coolest, most interesting series I have seen in some time. Shannon and I have made it through the mini-series and are eager to begin hitting the other episodes.

Also in television, we just finished John Adams on HBO. If you get HBO, its a series worth watching. Thankfully, HBO repeats everything all the time so if you missed it, I bet you can still catch it.

Finally in television, Lost was came roaring back this week and holy shit, it was a good episode. Cinematically Correct, LOTRKing, Vozzek69 on Dark UFO and Jeff Jensen on Dark UFO have posted their thoughts.

In books, I added The Green Marketing Manifesto to my mountain of books that are yet to be read.

In music, I just popped a Be Your Own Pet CD into my car. So far, it rocks out quite nicely. It reminds me a little bit of the Yeah Yeah Yeahs.

In sad news, one of my local record stores Schoolkids closed. While I still have Off Beat in Durham I really wish I had a better choice than Amazon on the interwebs. I’d love any suggestions for an independent record store on the web that I could order from. I love going to record stores but find that I don’t have a lot of time available to leave my couch. Babies do that for some reason.

A few random notes:

  • I still have a stack of comics to go through and more to buy this week. Captain America #37 was great. Can’t wait for the next issue of Secret Invasion.
  • In movies, we bought Gone Baby Gone on Pay per View and it was excellent. Well worth checking out. We also watched Can’t Buy Me Love and laughed at the silliness of Patrick Dempsey.

That’s it for now, as Shannon just said, the baby has opened the cargo bay doors and dropped a big payload.

Weekly Notes

5 04 2008

So again my sleep schedule was up and down this week, but here are a few notes, reviews, links, etc. for the week…

First, let me say that I read the first issue of Marvel’s Secret Invasion. Let me just say, WOW. I don’t want to drop any spoilers but I’m excited, confused, and waiting to see what happens next. Some reviews:
The AV Club review (along with the comic’s panel) is here.
LOTRKing’s Review is here (though filled with spoilers so be warned!).

Now that Secret Invasion is out of the way, what else?
Thanks to the New York Times I discovered Jott, an interesting site that allows you to Tweet, blog, e-mail, etc. from your cell phone without having to go through the pain in the neck of texting (I’m showing my age).

I had to finally put down Gentlemen of the Road by Michael Chabon. I didn’t realize it was originally published as a serial. Either way it was a bit too much fantasy for me. I like my fantasy in comic books or movies, not fiction.

The One Story Blog is doing its thing. It’s a great magazine and worth the subscription if you like short fiction.

Like Twitter? You’ll, um love likenotice Dawdlr. The postcards are beautiful though.

Check out Ryan Adams and his brilliant brain at work.

Electricity and Lust is renewing its focus on movies but it’s still just as great.

I still have a stack of comics and New Yorker magazines to plow through and will let you know if I find anything…