Monday, March 8, 2010

Movie Weekends & Walking Around

Greetings friends and foes,

Spectacular couple of weeks in the McCasland house since last I wrote. The weather is starting to warm in Nashville, and this morning i took a walk without a jacket for the first time in months. There is something about sunshine on your face that lends itself to happy feelings.

This past weekend I was home alone with my 1 year old daughter Roxie while Jessica & Marie were away showing their bunny rabbits in Georgia. I did some early spring cleaning, and we just did baby stuff like rolling around on the bed. Its funny when you tickle a child and you know it makes them happy. Roxie doesn’t speak much yet, but her laughter is nonstop most days.

I watched the Oscars last night, and It seemingly was the most predictable it had been in years. I think everybody who won was derserving, though i was pulling for Tarantino and the Basterds for Director and picture.Kathryn Bigelow has been legitimate for a long time, and I think she was very deserving. It is nice to see that ceiling torn off for the ladies. Nothing really stands out about the show to me, as none of the speeches were terribly prolific. It was nice to see genre guys like Barney Burman win for make up on Star Trek and Bob Murawski pick up and editing Oscar for The Hurt Locker. Bob has been editing for Sam Raimi for some time including the Spider-man pictures and Army of Darkness. I thought it was nice he thanked him in his speech. Bob also has done some amazing restoration work for Grindhouse Releasing on movies that would have never seen the light of day again if not of his painstaking work for little to no pay. Still the biggest thrill for me was seeing Roger Corman in the audience.

Corman of course was given an honorary Oscar for his body of work. Roger has been an inspiration to myself, and several other low budget movie makers for years now. He practically brought in the new crop of Hollywood through the nineteen-sixties and seventies. There has been a lot of naysayers against them pulling the speech of the lifetime achievement award off the telecast, but i feel the opposite. Instead of giving them a 5 minute spot, they get an entire evening dedicated towards them. Also allows the academy to bestow more than one award (the rules max out at four per year). I finished Rogers book again earlier this year, and I hope he updates it with everything that has happened since he wrote it, and last night.

The two weekends before that (which is about the last time I wrote) I spent a lot of time in the cinema catching up. I finally saw Avatar, which I enjoyed. My only complaint came with the projectionist and theater for using an obviously dim bulb which didn’t work well with the 3-D enhancement. I had to remove my glasses several times to read the subtitles.

I saw Universals remake of The Wolf Man, and was left kind of even on it. I think the monster looked great, and the father/son aspect was well crafted. Something about it just didn’t feel right to me though. A lot of the shots, and camera movements were poor in my opinion. I never really felt terrified, and I just didn’t feel fulfilled. I really wanted to love this movie, and its a way better effort than Universals recent Mummy or Van Helsing pictures. I heard rumblings of recuttings, and music cues dropped due to that. More computer animation (though I thought that aspect worked well with the practical make up). Plus the original director bailed. Needless to say if your not a die hard Monster fan I’d skip it, and check out the original.

I watched Kevin Smiths Cop Out, which seemingly has been getting bad reviews. I’m not sure what all the bad blood is about though. The movie is a no brain action comedy movie with some good laughs, albeit a very predictable plot. I’ve always found Tracey Morgan funny, and Sean William Scott has some real stand out stuff in this. I’m a bit biased as I love Bruce Willis, Kevin Smith, and Tracey Morgan.

I saw Shutter Island the following night, and wow Scorsese knows how to make a movie. Again, I’ve heard some people talking about how predictable the twist is, and I would agree. However the movie itself is well played and shot wonderfully. Its no Keyser Soze moment for sure, but I think its a great movie just the same.

Other than that I watched Lars & the Real Girl and just tonight rewatched Star Trek which Jessica had not seen. Lars & the Real Girl is a very interesting movie. Takes the approach of how Mental Illness should be treated with understanding and kindness as opposed to medicine or institution. Worth a look.

I spent an evening in the studio with Numerics shooting some footage as they record some acoustic tracks. Not sure whats going to come of this, as I don’t have the completed track. We are however finishing up a video for a track off of “Proud To Be A Numerican” .

I spent an evening out on Shackle Island as well doing some promos for Dr. Gangrene projects. A scene for a music video, as well as a video for a festival. We also shot a short promo for the Rondo Awards. Larry is up for 3 awards this year. Best Horror Host, Best Fan Event: Horror hoot, and Best Website. I’d be really happy to see him win any and all of these, as I think he truly does deserve it. He won best website a few years back, and of course we shared honors last year for the PSAs.

The Rondos are one of the better awards around in my opinion, as they go straight to the heart of fandom. Even people who don’t live in the genre year round can find things to vote for. You only have to vote in the categories you want. So please do go copy & paste the ballot from and email it in before the end of the month.

The day after we shot all of that Larry hit me up for an interview for his blog, which was unexpected and very nice. He asked a lot of questions about where I came from, and who I was growing up. It was kind of nice to think about some of that, and put it into perspective. I really like the idea of this, and may hit some people that are close to me up with some questions for publishing here. You can check out my stuff with Dr Gangrene at

Baseball spring training started not long ago, and I got a chance to see a bit of the Cubs vs White Sox game on WGN. Baseball brings me a lot of joy, and probably my favorite use of Mathematics. Of course I’m hoping the Rangers will win it all just one time in my life. I have a bad feeling that I’ll go broke driving cross country to see the games if they ever make a run at it. In celebration of our beloved national past time, I made a video about five baseball movies i love. I plan on doing another later down the road, as I’m already catching flak for some of the titles i left off. I also cheesed it up by wearing a hat and jersey. I usually only wear jerseys to games. But I hope you enjoy these just the same.

I also shot a video of me just out and about shopping at a really cool video store in town called McKays. I found some cool stuff including a copy of Mutant League Football for Sega Genesis.

I’ve been looking for this for some time, and just couldn’t justify the price tag they wanted on online auction sites. Got if for around three bucks, and I must have played 20 games since i picked it up last week. Video Games are something I fall in and out of love with about twice a year. They are damning to my productivity as a writer. I’ll go on stints where I love to play and will spend way to much of my free time in the game. Mind you I don’t think their evil, as i quiet enjoy them. However I try to dedicate myself to my work, and the boxes of old cartridges I have laying around don’t help me.

Through all this I’ve been listening to Clem Snide, New Order, Ramones, Radiohead mostly.

Also here are some videos I’ve found enjoyable in the past few weeks.

A couple of Forrest Gump trailer recut as Gangsta & horror films. This craze of recutting trailers came a few years back with recuts of the Shining as a heartwarming father son picture, and Mary Poppins cut as a horror film. You can find either of those easily on the web, but check these out if you have ever seen Forrest Gump.

Goofy Movie shot for shot remake in real life? I’ve never been a big fan of this movie, but this is a pretty great example of what can be done with next to no money and a lot of friends.

Dan Black & Kid Cudi - Symphonies My good friend Jonathan Preston passed this on, and of course it plays to my movie loving side very well with all the throws at cinema opening titles.

Thats it for this time. Working on some more video blogs, and looking into new ideas. Hope your all well.



XichthusX said...

Another solid write-up. Love your blog. You and I have A LOT in common so I do really enjoy what you have to say. Keep it up!

Joshua Blevins Peck said...

No Bad News Bears? Are you out of your cotton picking mind!?