Missing in Action

I’ve been meaning to write here for a while. In fact, I think I’ve started at least 4 or 5 posts in the last three weeks, but never had a chance to actually complete them. Project deadlines, coupled with Shari being sick and me not feeling very well either have pretty much wiped out my time to get much done or write anything to completion. I like being busy, but it seems like I can’t seem to find time to do anything creative like writing or photography. Instead, I’ve been so exhausted and wanting to spend time with Shari that I’ve done little more than watch TV and fall asleep or play mindless games because I just can’t think when I get home.

Weekends have been just as bad – I had a touch of the something this weekend (though not as bad as Shari’s full-blown flu), and had absolutely no energy to do anything constructive. It was all I could do to keep up with the basics around the house, let alone work on the websites I’ve wanted to, write the book reviews I’ve been meaning to, or finishing the numerous posts I’ve started.

The good news is that my projects are starting to wind down a little. We have been going at breakneck speed since before Christmas, and I’m not the only one who must be at the end of their energy. Between November and the end of April, I will have worked on and (hopefully launched) 9 websites, worked on 5 others that are launching later, helped in umpteen pitches, UX reviews, etc., written an online internal UX guidelines site for one client, and started managing (I’ll use that term lightly, however) my own 3-person team. It’s been trying at times, and a lot of work at other times and I see the light at the end of the tunnel. That light – our trip to Arizona at the end of April.

Bright Sides of Vegetating

On the plus side, I’ve seen a LOT of movies since Shari left for Vegas about a month ago. I went through a binge of movies recently, some good and many bad (since Shari won’t watch those with me, her absence was my time to watch things like “Alien vs. Predator 2: Requiem”). So, here goes:

  • AVP2: Requiem (starstarstar) – better than I expected, not as good as I would have wanted. Still, the story of Aliens getting loose in Durango, CO and being pursued by a Predator was done better than the first AVP movie.
  • Pan’s Labyrinth (starstarstarstarstar) – One of the best movies I’ve seen in a while – visually stunning, with a good story and good acting, even if it was completely in Spanish and I had to read sub-titles for the whole thing. I’ve wanted to see this for a long time, and I’m glad that I finally got to see it.
  • A Scanner Darkly (starstarstar) – not bad, and I have to admit that the rotoscoping effect helped give the film a distinctly Philip K. Dick feel, but the peace was slow and pounding at times. A for effort but a C for execution – another Dick story that failed on screen.
  • Traitor (starstarstar) – Dom Cheadle is good, as usual, but the movie kind of dragged at times.
  • Cloverfield (starstarstar) – this movie tried to be an American Godzilla (but better than that bomb of an American version), and ALMOST succeeded. But the camera work (simulating a vidcam) was annoying and really made it hard to watch.
  • The Ten (starstar) – a cluster of ten stories in which someone breaks every one of the 10 commandments, all of the storylines slowly flowing together by the last one. Paul Rudd narrates and the cast is pretty strong – some of the tales are great, others are terrible (“Thou shalt not lie” was disturbing, frankly – kind of like R. Crumb on acid).
  • 10,000 BC (starstar)- you’d think that a movie that managed to create realistic mammoths, saber- toothed tides and terror birds would spend at least stone time making the rest of the movie worth the expense of those CGI graphics, wouldn’t you? But no, that’s not the case. The plot was decent, if formulaic, but not executed very well.
  • Burn After Reading (starstarstarstar) – I really enjoyed this movie, as I do most Coen Brothers films. A quasi- spy movie, but with the trademark Coen’s zaniness thrown in.
  • The Ruins (starstar)- At least the story concept was unique, if the plot and acting weren’t particularly good. Essentially, tourists happen upon a sacred Mayan temple in the jungle and discover why no one has ever come back to describe it.
  • Max Payne (starstar) – although visually well done, there story was pretty boring. What I thought would have a supernatural bent to it was little more than a quasi film noir crime thriller (I never played the game or I might have known ).

The Oscar Contenders

We’re finally getting to see some of the movies that were up for the Oscars, too. So far, I have to say that they have definitely been worthy of the nominations.

  • Milk (starstarstarstar) – The movie itself was really well done, especially the cinematography, but the highlight was Sean Penn, who most absolutely deserved his Best Actor nod. Josh Brolin was good too, but I don’t know that he deserved the Best Supporting Actor nomination as much.
  • Vicky Cristina Barcelona (starstarstarstar) – one of the best movies I have arm so far third year (and the first of the Oscar contenders I have watched), it was a great film, well acted and with beautiful scenery throughout. Penelope Cruz was wonderful in it, but I think that Javier Bardem was robbed for not being nominated. Well worth watching.

2 Responses to “Missing in Action

  • I find myself starting post all the time that I never finish! Hope Shari is doing all right!

  • Yeah – she’s fine. Actually, we’re both pretty sore from doing all sorts of yard work over the weekend, but we’re both in good health!

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