Since I wrote before about the new Star Trek, I thought I’d post this new video. Right now, this thing has become all the rage on YouTube and many, many people have posted about it on their blogs.

I believe that the message here is simple…give us geeks enough time and footage to screw around with, and eventually we’ll give you something truly hilarious.

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Kevin Smith Comes to Town!

September 21, 2008

It seems over the years there have been quite a few celebs making their way here, particularly comedians. In fact, almost all of them are comedians. Stephen Colbert, Jon Lovitz, Bob Saget…and now, Kevin fuckin’ Smith. For those who don’t know who this guy is, Kevin Smith has made a living doing a great many jobs in the entertainment industry- screenwriter, producer, director, actor, comedian, and he even wrote Daredevil and Green Arrow comics! Almost all of the movies he is invovled in are indies, and like any true indie filmmaker, he often wrestled with the Hollywood rating system. Apparently, the last bunch of films he has done really were semi-pornographic (after all, the next movie is titled Zack and Miri make a Porno). While Smith has been relatively lucky, even with his first movie, he also has been deeply scarred by the failure of Jersey Girl. He says that anytime he brings up a bad movie, offended film fans retort with sneers about how bad Jersey Girl was. He is also recognized for his two recurring characters, Jay and Silent Bob.

He appeared for a Q & A session, which media students were encouraged to attend. However, the questions weren’t so much about his experience as a filmmaker, but rather about bizarre senarios invovling lewd acts and geeky humor.

Now that the Death Star has been destroyed, what kind of retirement will the construction workers get?

Would you bang Sarah Palin?

If a you could eat a burger made from any celebrity, who would you eat?

I’m not sure you would get Brad Pitt or Pierce Brosnan to respond favorably to such questions. I’d love to see someone ask George Bush these things, though.

Several of the more obnoxious question askers were put directly on the spot. Most of them made the mistake of allowing Smith to question them. When this happened, he could be delightfully merciless.

Although the event might appear low brow, it was very interesting because of the relationship that he has with his fans. They were very, very appreciative of his appearance, and he seemed to enjoy it as much as everyone else. he takes an interest in his fans, and its not just because he wants their money. he gets them. He reads comics, he loves all kinds of movies, he blogs, and he is open to his adoring public than pretty much any other celeb.

You can find kevin Smiths website here: http://www.viewaskew.com/main.html

“The Big Lebowski”

September 11, 2008

Big Lebowski

Big Lebowski

Ah, now this is a true classic. Well, a cult classic at least. The Big Lebowski(1998) bombed at the box office, and only became popular after it left the theaters and cinemas. In time, Lebowski  fandom was truly a sight to behold. Its almost like the Star Wars craze. Lebowski merchandise comes in a wide variety of forms, almost every film nerd has seen it and usually have seen it so many times they can quote any line if you asked them to. For heaven’s sake, the movie has its own festival.  I never quite understood why it did so poorly initially, and some find it odd that it has such a following now. The reasons are fairly simple. There simply aren’t as many comedy films that are this far out and unpredictable. It was made by very intelligent people, but its made for normal people. Of course, there’s always the main character himself…’The Dude’, a zen-ish figure who does absolutely nothing and yet manages to get himself in a world of trouble. Oh, and of course there is a lot of bowling on the side, too.

The Big Lebowskiis actually a spoof of an old Humphry Bogart crime flick called the Big Sleep (1946). In fact, its pretty much the same plot, except The Big Lebowski is set in the 90’s and the hero is a Buddha-like hippie. The Dude, played by Jeff Bridges, is the laziest dead beat in Los Angeles. While going about his business, a couple thugs mistake him for a millionaire whose wife supposedly owes money to some crime lord. This is the only movie I can remember where the conflict breaks into the protagonist’s home and gives him a swirly (literally).

Walter Sobchak, played by John Goodman, later talks the Dude into confronting the millionaire, and asking him to remedy his situation. The rich man is a disabled, conservative veteran who refuses to help the Dude in any way- until the thugs get to him first. For those that don’t know the plot already, there is a lot more to the story than this, but you’ll have to watch it for yourself. With Barton Fink, it was hard to describe the movie without giving away the ending. As far as the Big Lebowski is concerned, there is just too many twists and turns. It can be a little confusing the first time, and that’s how the Big Sleep is too.

However, it isn’t necessary to keep up with the entire plot. The movie is more like a series of small adventures rather than a big one. In fact, a number of the scenarios that take place in Lebowski are based on stories about a couple guys in real life. The Dude and Walter are both based on real people, and apparently the car theft happened in real life, too. Truth really is stranger than fiction.  

 There is something to be said for unusual characters and witty dialogue, and Lebowski has both in spades. Just about everything here is in some way irreverent. Only Judd Apatow movies can compare to the Big Lebowski. The cast delivers each gag perfectly, and even though the characters are hardly believable, the cast performs their respective roles very well. Having some of the most quotable dialogue ever probably helped a little. There are quite a few stars here, after all. The cinematography and visual effects make an already bizarre aberration of LA even more surreal and hypnotic. However, if you haven’t seen this movie before, be prepared for profanity and mature content. The word “fuck” is uttered 281 times. Think Deadwood.

As great as the characters are, some of them seem forced or unnecessary. The narrator and the Jon Polito character comes to mind. While they do contribute a little to the story, their roles seem superfluous, especially for such a busy film.

The Big Lebowski is far from high brow entertainment. That being said, it is still an extremely clever and entertaining movie. After all, it was created by the Coen brothers, and many consider it to be their masterpiece. There is so much to see in this movie, that you have to watch it more than once to fully appreciate it, but it also happens to be one of those movies that never seem to get old. If you are looking for a funny adult comedy that you don’t have to take too seriously, you can’t go wrong with the Big Lebowski.

9.2 out of 10.0