Sunday, July 27, 2008

Deep-Sixed.

This blog is done. Over with. Kaput.

Capische? The new blog is at adamholwerda.tumblr.com!

If you have a tumblr too, follow me and then I might follow you!

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Sunday, January 27, 2008

Cloverfield

So I saw Cloverfield...last night, while my group of friends were watching Juno (also a good movie...wait, I haven't said that Cloverfield was any good yet...).

Cloverfield, as you might know, is the movie about the giant whatever thing that attacks New York City. The shell of the film is portrayed as Department of Defense footage retrieved from a memory card of a camera found in Central Park. Think first-person-shooter where you don't actually get to play, because your friend is hogging the console and so you have to pretend like you're just fine and dandy watching as he makes all the wrong moves. Entertaining as those experiences can sometimes be, one of the fallbacks of watching a movie that's shot in this fashion is that you never for an instant forget that you are, in fact, watching a movie.

And for a project that is supposed to capture the realism and intense carnage of an event, all it really ends up doing is miss the point.

I'm not going to go over the way movies work, movies in the traditional fashion that are scripted and edited and cut in such a way that about twenty minutes in, you forget you're actually watching something - you're there, with the protagonists. It's no longer a movie, and you're no longer you - at that point you're just a receiver. This is what I'm saying happens with most movies.

Not with this one. For a movie that's centered mainly around a core group of four or five characters, I want to be able to care about them. I want to be able to care about one girl when she gets bitten by a weird spider alien thing and then explodes. I want to care, because the guy behind the camera cares, but I don't. I don't even end up caring about the guy behind the camera, or his best friend (the movie's real main character) or his best friend's brother or his best friend's brother's fiance. The characters are likeable, I'm sure. I just didn't really see it. There's no real feeling of jeopardy when: a.) You're constantly reminded you're watching a film produced by the people who made LOST but is in no way as well-scripted, b.)You're almost rooting for the characters to die so that c.)The movie can end.

Um. Let's talk about the monster for a moment. You do get to see it. You get to see it almost too much. And it's not really all that. The little creatures that come off of it are pretty cool, but they're only showcased in one five minute scene toward the middle of the film.

I don't know. I think if you want to know what this movie is, or how it works (or doesn't) you have to see it for yourself. I just think that it could have been scripted so much better...because, halfway through the film I no longer want to be hearing dialogue that goes like this:

"OH MY GOD DID YOU JUST SEE THAT?!?! DID YOU SEE WHAT I JUST SAW!?!"

and

"WHAT WAS THAT THING?! WHAT WAS THAT!?"

and

"I CAN'T BELIEVE THIS IS HAPPENING! CAN THIS BE HAPPENING?!"

If you know what I mean.

But, as Lavar Burton would say, "Don't take my word for it."

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Tuesday, January 01, 2008

2008: A New Year

Resolutions, of course. RESOLUTIONS.

1. First and foremost: THE resolution. 900 words a day, without fail, without passing Go, EVERY DAY, for a year. I know I'm not going to keep this one, but I'm going to try my best. If not 900 then 800, and if not that then something less, and if not that then at least SOMETHING.

2. Spend more time doing the things I want to do with the people I want to do them with.

3. Maintain and grow DeadpanDesigns.com - whether or not it makes Ben and I any money.

4. Watch every pitch of every inning of every Tigers' game. (MUAHAHAHA).

5. Don't die doing anything that I thought beforehand would be cool on videotape.

2 Comments:

Anonymous fed up! said...

King Louie in Disney's "Jungle Book" was voiced by (and modeled after) a WHITE, ITALIAN-AMERICAN pop singer named Louis Prima. I suppose you turned that paper in to another empty-headed (heh) instructor and received an A? Sad, sad, sad.

History rewritten through teeny-bopper blogs!! Lovely!

7:17 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Additionally, King Louie *never* uses African-American Vernacular English. He sings and scats in a jazzy, mid-century NY style, *just like Louis Prima did*. In fact, *you* are the racist for assuming an orangutan who sings jazz and has a funny voice must be a representation of a black man...

7:34 PM  

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Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Finally

2008 is coming, and we can finally tell ourselves that if we just close our eyes and reach out with our noodly appendages, we might be able to feel the tug of something warmer, something beautiful, off in the distance. Only maybe it's not so far off in the distance, maybe it's closer than we thought, and maybe it's more amazing than we ever thought it would probably be. And, standing there with our eyes closed, perhaps we utter the phrase that sends shivers down any true believer's spine.



"Pitchers and catchers report."


Ahh...doesn't that just feel amazing?

1 Comments:

Anonymous Steve said...

A subtle way of saying spring training is only 45 days away(at this post). I can feel a great summer for the Motor City Kitties as well as glorious finishes for the Wings and Pistons. As for the Lions....? Another 40 years of rebuilding. Happy New Year Adam!!

12:44 PM  

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Tuesday, December 25, 2007

Christmas'd

Hey, Merry Christmas everyone!

It's about time, my yule log was starting to rot.

2 Comments:

Anonymous Steve said...

Merry Christmas to you too and the best to you in the coming year!!

5:55 AM  
Blogger Adam said...

Thanks Steve!

12:52 AM  

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Friday, December 21, 2007

........

Just finished Elantris.

Wow.

I'm reconsidering my novel now. Or even trying to write.

It was that good.

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Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Elantris and Legend and Todd

Last night I read the first three chapters of a book, online, on the author's website.

The author's name is Brandon Sanderson (click for link), and the book was called Elantris.

Today, I was browsing in Barnes & Noble, and I found it. On the cover is a quote by Orson Scott Card (the very same to whom I'm personally acquainted) that says "Elantris is the finest novel of fantasy to be written in many years."

I would have bought the book without the quote, but let's say it helps. After reading the first three chapters online, I desperately hoped there would be a link telling me to "Go to Chapter 4."

There wasn't. But I was intrigued enough, interested enough in the story and the characters and the storytelling (none of which is perfect, but it's above average - better than most things that get published nowadays) to buy the book today.

That's what I think we need, as readers. Not an excerpt or a synopsis or a rating system - I want to be able to read the first three or four chapters and judge for myself whether the book is my style and to be able to tell if the writer's there for me or him. And there isn't always time (or space) to sit and read the first few chapters of a book whose cover intrigued you...What if we didn't ever see the cover till we knew we wanted the thing? What a wacky world that would be.

-----(I'm going to start doing this to separate my thoughts)---(lalala I am Neil Gaiman.)

Thinking more about I Am Legend (might has well have been titled I, Legend - in the vein of Smith's current holiday movie book-killing trend) I have realized the significance of a somewhat cryptic and weird scene toward the middle of the film. In it, Smith drives past a mannequin - whom we met earlier (Frank, I think) - that has been placed in a very different spot from where he'd previously been (outside a supermarket). Smith thinks he sees the mannequin's head move, and proceeds to run toward it, telling Frank that if he is real, he'd better say so. Frank says nothing, and so Smith pumps his motionless plastic body full of bullets.

Smith then approaches Frank even further, still trying to figure out how he got where he got without Smith's help...and stuff, at that point, (or things) proceeds happening. Trappy stuff. Now, at first I couldn't figure out why the mannequin was there either, and figured (until today) that the reason it was there was because Will Smith was in fact going crazy and had put it there unbeknownst to us in a Tyler Durden Fight Clubby way. However, I now know that my thinking was wrong and that someone (or thing) else moved Frank. And I would have known that had the script continued in that direction and actually played out the ending of the book (which has been around for 53 years...and can be found at any local library) instead of the typical Hollywood happy/religious/bastardizing ending that we were forced to watch. I'll tell you right now that I can (and will, if asked by the Legend people) write a better (and how!) last twenty minutes for them to re-shoot and throw into the Director's Cut. Then they can pretend they did it right the first time.

Actually, I think I'll just pretend that my ending is what I saw, and hey! That's what I'll remember.



----------------

I want to see Sweeney Todd now.

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