Monday, April 28, 2008

Left 4 Dead

Left 4 Dead: new batch of screenshots - PC Gaming news - QJ.NET
New screenshots are in for the upcoming survival-horror game from Valve Corporation, Left 4 Dead (Xbox 360, PC)

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Engine mod

Would this provide extra power because its cool or suck because its outdated?


Here is an article on prototype replacement eyes for the blind. Nasty images of eye surgery not included.

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Plastic Surgery explained for you and me

Children's book about plastic surgery - Boing Boing
My Beautiful Mommy is a new kids book about plastic surgery. It was written by Michael Salzhauer, a plastic surgeon in Bal Harbour, Florida. Salzhauer says he came up with the idea to help parents explain cosmetic procedures to their children. From Newsweek: Productimages Mommy-Cover

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Warrick takes a walk

This will be Warrick's last season on CSI. Gary Dourdan is done with it. I think this shows that CSI is heading towards being like Law and Order. Law and Order has been on TV for something like 15 years. The cast has had several changes, but the format remains intact and the show continues to thrive. Grissom, Katherine, and Nick will be back for more blood and guts.

Dreamworks hopes to hurt your brain in 3 dimensions

Dreamworks has acquired the rights to Ghost in the Shell and plans to make a 3-D live action version of it.

Friday, April 11, 2008

This is very interesting

And I for one applaud her for it. I can understand protecting your child, but at 9 years old I would have most likely been fine getting home also.

New York Sun column: "Why I Let My 9-Year-Old Ride the Subway Alone" - Boing Boing
Lenore Skenazy wrote a piece for the April 4 edition of the New York Sun about letting her 9-year-old son find his way home from downtown NYC using the subway system. Many people were upset with her.

Wednesday, April 09, 2008

Some words on Pan's Labyrinth

So I just finished watching Pan's Labyrinth (rated R). I would loosely classify it as a fantasy/horror movie. The real world and a fantasy world collide in an obscure, rural military camp in 1940's Spain. Our young heroine and her very pregnant mother are going to live in the military camp deep in the woods. The troops at the camp are dealing with guerrilas. That's about all the background we get, so crack open a history book if you want more information. She begins exploring the grounds and finds an entrance to an underground passage after being led through a stone maze by a curious flying insect. There she meets a faun (sort of like a satyr) who gives her some tasks to do so she can return to the kingdom she forgot she was from. The movie goes on with her dealing with the harshness of real life (the capitain of the camp is akin to Ralph Fiennes' character in Schindler's List) and the equal terror of the tasks she must perform (remember, I said fantasy/horror). The fantasy sections are quite elaborate visually, and the creature effects/costumes/CGI are well done.

Quickly into the movie, I found myself thinking of The Cell, another movie that alternates between harsh reality and equally harsh fantasy. I quickly decided that The Cell gave us a much bigger dose of the fantasy scenes than Pan's Labyrinth did. Granted, the faun and his "pets" get a lot of screen time, but its the alternate world as a whole that really makes this movie different from just another movie about dictatorial cruelty and the horrors of war.

Pan's Labyrinth was filmed in Spanish with actors that most of us would not recognize. The acting and voices were fine. The fantasy scenes were unique...just too short and insufficient in quantity.

Overall, I thought our heroine was good, but I could not care enough about the other human characters or the plot...they were all "cookie cutter" to me...which can be ok at times, but I expect extraordinary characters in a fantasy movie. The fantasy scenes (and a couple of the reality scenes) were somewhat shocking and certainly creative, so it gets points there. I just wanted a scene or two more of the fantasy stuff, even if it would mess with my head.