thehefner: (Bill the Butcher: They Tuk Er Jerbs!)

I'm resisting the urge to do an entire St. Patrick Day's post in character as Bill the Butcher. Because I have more important work to do, and besides, that would be offensive and wrong. And besides besides, my Bill is so much better when I can be in costume to do the voice and squint and everything.


Must... not... record via webcam Bill the Butcher's sing-a-long St. Patrick's Day blog...
thehefner: (Al Bundy: Shoot Me)
My time in Seattle is almost at an end, and I'm plotting my road trip back home. The trick will be weather conditions, as I have neither four-wheel drive nor chains for my tires. But I'm gonna need to get a concrete plan one way or another so I can figure out what dates I'll need to book to stay at the Tropicana Hotel in Las Vegas.

Following ROAD TRIP USA, I'd like to take the Oregon Trail route from Portland to Goodling, hooking up with Highway 93 to Twin Falls, Idaho, all the way to Vegas. But I don't want risk getting snowbound or fucked up by icy roads if I can help it. I looked up the quick and dirty Google Maps route from here to Vegas, but it had me going through Southwest Washington State, which I was warned might be a bad idea. I'd hate to sacrifice a road trip experience for a whole lot of safe, boring, horrible long driving, but that may be how things'll have to go.

Once I get South, though, everything will be coo-coo. Theoretically. From Vegas, I'll continue on Highway 93 down to Tuscon, AZ, where I can hook up with Route 80, the Southern Pacific route, all the way through the South in January. Should be pleasant enough. And I will definitely be sure to take more advantage of Texas this time around. The route goes all the way to Savanna, Georgia, but I think I may save Savanna for the Spring, when I head down to Orlando Fringe like I did last time.

But a major goal is Tuscaloosa, Alabammy, where I shall meet up with my new LJ-found geek pal [ profile] bitemetechie. She's actually up for not just giving me crash space, but letting me subject her to a triple feature of LAST OF THE MOHICANS, GANGS OF NEW YORK, and THERE WILL BE BLOOD. I want to test a theory if we could watch all three films as the arc of the same character, reincarnated three times over. She will also supply me with pie. Clearly, Tuscaloosa is a priority stop.

From there, depending on how I feel, I may keep on the interesting routes or just shoot straight for DC. I need to be back to refill my acid reflux medication, not to mention getting there in time for Inauguration. I really don't want to go, since I do not revel the prospect of those crowds nor that weather, but my brother insists. The things I do for history.

So that's the plan, or the plans for the plan. Come Monday, we'll find out one way or another.
thehefner: (Harrumph)
Fuck it, I'll give my further JUNO thoughts their own entry.

I've reevaluated my opinion on JUNO, especially now that it's a mainstream smash hit. My main complaint is how it seems to try too hard to be "cool" in places. Certain scenes felt forced, particular the first meeting with Jennifer Garner and Jason Bateman. Juno's character in that scene did absolutely not ring true, spitting out unprovoked one-liners to the delight of the audience but having no real thematic reason to do so, from what I could tell. Was Juno purposely pushing her outrageous snark attitude to cover her own insecurity? Maybe so. And maybe for all the wrong reasons.

Maybe I'm just projecting my own experience with people saying that THE HEFNER MONOLOGUES are better when I'm not trying to be in "stand-up comic mode" but when I'm just being honest and myself, but that's sort of how I felt about JUNO. It seemed insecure about its own heart and quality, hiding behind indie "quirk" stuff and the snarky snappy "outsider-hip" dialogue.

("Mad tunage?" "Hells yeah"? That's what's passing for realistic teenage dialogue? Granted, real-life teenagers aren't exactly paragons of eloquence nor original thought, but still...)

Furthermore, it felt like the screenwriter was putting a bit too much of herself into the character; I'm sure there are plenty of teenage outsiders who closed-mindedly think Dario Argento and Iggy and the Stooges are the greatest artists of all time, but it never rang true for Juno's character. Not with me, anyway, and I'm clearly the minority.

Really, the overwhelming popularity of JUNO just reinforces the realization that I'm just particularly adverse to teenagers (not to mention indie culture, which often seems to have the exact same sensibilities), but even I agree it's a good--perhaps even great--film.

It's akin to real-life teenagers like Juno herself: once you get past the superficial cynicism, the everyone-else-is-an-idiot-but-me snobbery, and the oh-so-cool glib snark disguised as real wit... there's actually a real heart, depth, and humanity to be found.

And that's what ultimately made me like JUNO, even with all my complaints. In fact, I liked it a hell of a lot.

So yeah, while it very much is this year's NAPOLEON DYNAMITE and LITTLE MISS SUNSHINE--the indie movie mainstream audiences can go see to feel cultured for seeing an indie movie--it's a great sight better and smarter than either. That said, I sure as heck don't think Diablo Cody deserves an Oscar nod.

Oh, and Thing # 827 I loved about THERE WILL BE BLOOD: Daniel's delivery of the line, "That makes you my... compet-it-torrr."

He says "competitor" as if it's the name of a Decepticon. Magnificent.

I've also been very tempted to just constantly repeat the "milkshake" monologue to anyone who will listen. Just an average day for Heffie.
thehefner: (Bill the Butcher: Chillin' like a Villai)
Mom bought me an iPod, so now I have an iPod, and I love my iPod, I will hug my iPod and kiss my iPod and squeeze my iPod and sing to my iPod and call her GLaDOS.

Ever woken yourself up to THE FOUNTAIN soundtrack, followed by Oingo Boingo's "Not My Slave"? It's an experience everyone should have at least once.

Did I forget to mention that I went to go see THERE WILL BE BLOOD dressed as Bill the Butcher? [ profile] fiveseconddelay jokingly suggested it, and then I realized, "... well shit, if I did it for PIRATES 2: BARNACLE BOOGALOO..."

So, yes. I dressed as Bill the Butcher to see THERE WILL BE BLOOD.

Which, by the way, I enjoyed a lot more the second time around. Yeah, I saw it again exactly twenty-four hours later, this time with Mom in tow, because 1.) she needed to see it, and 2.) I needed to reevaluate it after thinking about the film all yesterday.

Yes, this really is among the top two or three films of 2007, and if Daniel Day-Lewis doesn't win best actor, it'll be a fucking crime.

But what threw me off was Paul Dano's character. Or rather, characters. You see, he plays twins. One twin we only see once, and the other twin dominates the rest of the film. And the problem was... I completely missed the fact that they were twins. I thought it was just one character playing his own game, eventually bordering on outright madness.

And the thing is, [ profile] fiveseconddelay thought the exact same thing. Neither of us are plebeian film goers here! I warned Mom repeatedly when we saw it, "Twins, twins, twins, twins," and after the film she thanked me. She agreed, it would have been lost on her entirely. Oh, and on the way back to the parking garage, we heard two random women behind us talking about the film, both of whom were ALSO totally confused about the fact that they were twins!

So yeah, to reviewers like Moriarty from fuck you, it's so not "obvious" that they're twins. It was all so ambiguous, with the precious few lines of information lost in expository dialogue that many people miss outright simply because it's expository dialogue! It's so vague that it almost feels like I'm spoiling some sort of twist ending here, but I'm not!

So if you see THERE WILL BE BLOOD, just remember: twins.

And with that in mind, absolutely see THERE WILL BE BLOOD as soon as bloody possible. It's a goddamn fucking masterpiece.

Handlebar mustache and top hat optional.
thehefner: (Bill the Butcher: They Tuk Er Jerbs!)
I'm at work. But I shouldn't be at work. Oh, I'm supposed to be here, as my manager informed me just yesterday afternoon, until which time the Saturday work slot was up in the air. And while it was up in the air, I made other plans with [ profile] thirdbase, plans which should have come into fruition at this very moment.

But no, I've been dicked over. And now I'm stuck at work. All day.

Instead of being with my friends, the Rude Mechanicals, at the COOKIE TASTING PARTY.

This blows on so many levels.

In other news, [ profile] fiveseconddelay and I caught THERE WILL BE BLOOD.

... okay, I think I need to see it again. Certain plot points were confusing, and I'm not certain if we were supposed to figure these certain things out or not.

And there wasn't as much Bill the Butcher going on as I'd hoped, but he was there. Oh yes, he was there when it mattered. But on first viewing, I think I still prefer Daniel Day-Lewis' performance in GANGS OF NEW YORK. Don't get me wrong, if he wins best actor for THERE WILL BE BLOOD, he fucking well deserves it. I'm just saying that Daniel Plainview would take a bit longer to kill a full-grown grizzly with his bare hands than would Mr. William Cutting.

I'm not disappointed in THERE WILL BE BLOOD, exactly. It was damn excellent. It just met my expectations, which is good, except what I was really expecting was to have it surpass my expectations. If that makes any sense. And it didn't. Surpass those expectations, that is. I wanted to be, "Holy shit, shoot me in the ass with the Orgazmo gun, that was amazing!" Instead, I was, "... Hm. That was damn good."

Most critics are calling it either the best or second best film of 2007. I need to see it again to catch what I missed the first time around.

And maybe, just maybe, I need to rewatch PUNCH-DRUNK LOVE, a movie I fucking abhorred like few others in the history of cinema, considering that virtually all critics are still calling it a work of modern brilliance.

Psst, [ profile] disc_sophist, the first issue of THE TWELVE hits stores next week. Starring the single greatest comic character of the new millennium, resurrected from the last, THE GODDAMN BLUE BLADE.

He's so dead. But he'll be magnificent while he survives.
thehefner: (Bill the Butcher: They Tuk Er Jerbs!)
From the AV Club's This is a link to an example websiteBest Films of 2007 lists, the Nathan This is a link to an example website"My Year of Flops" Rabin section:

"Larger than life" doesn't begin to do justice to Day Lewis' performance in THERE WILL BE BLOOD. As in GANGS OF NEW YORK, Lewis plays a man so forceful and towering that he could probably wrestle a full-grown grizzly bear onscreen and have audiences worried primarily about the bear's safety.

It's hilarious because it's so true. When Maxim was doing a tournament of who-would-win-in-a-fight, at one point it was Bill the Butcher vs. Wolverine. Now, of course Logan would win... but dude, that fight would be brutal.

There needs to be a character in BUB AND JOHNNY GO like that, a perfect warrior badass in the post-zombie apocalypse wasteland like that. Call him William Poole, for those in the know.

I should probably got on my own "Best of 2007 Movies" list, for those who give a thrupenny fuck.
thehefner: (Bill the Butcher: They Tuk Er Jerbs!)
So I was still feeling bummed and sick and stressed, when [ profile] fragmentedsky popped into the comic store to visit me. At first, she made my mood even worse by singing, "You had a bad day..." but before I could slash my wrists with the latest issue of X-MEN: DIE BY THE SWORD (a fatal paper cut would be a lot less painful than reading it), she presented me with this mini-poster she picked up at a movie theater:

title or description

I made a sound that a man should just not make.

Above and beyond the increasing evidence that THERE WILL BE BLOOD will be one of the best--if not THE best--film of 2007 is the fact that... well, if you haven't seen the trailer yet, WATCH it.

Look. Daniel Day-Lewis is a brilliant actor. One of the greatest alive. He utterly transforms himself and disappears into whatever role he does. Much like Gary Oldman, (generally, there are exceptions, I'm sure) no single DDL performance is alike. And yet, I watch that trailer, and do see what I see?

It's Bill. It's Bill the Butcher.

No, seriously. Sure, he died in the draft riots of 1863, but he was so badass and malevolent that he instantly was reincarnated in California, and grew up to become an oil baron by the turn of the century. He died because he was out-of-touch with what his beloved country was becoming, so he just reinvented himself into a brand new dark vision of America.

Seriously. Watch this:

And then watch that trailer and tell me I'm wrong.

He can't be stopped. No matter what happens to this "Daniel Plainview," the terrifying man with the mighty 'stache will live on and on.

I'm still sick, still bummed, and that damn song is STILL stuck in my hand... but the thought of seeing Bill on the big screen does help matters some.
thehefner: (Bill the Butcher: They Tuk Er Jerbs!)
New trailer for THERE WILL BE BLOOD is out. With neato Bernard Herrmann style music.

Oh my god, Bill the Butcher is back. He totally survived the events of GANGS OF NEW YORK and remade himself as an oil baron. I knew it!

THERE WILL BE BLOOD is based on Upton Sinclair's book OIL!, which sounds like it should be a musical. The film's been likened to CITIZEN KANE (but in what sense, who knows?). It's supposedly one of Daniel Day Lewis' greatest performances. I've heard nothing but dumbfounded stunned exaltation heaped upon this film.

Even though I still think PUNCH-DRUNK LOVE is a great steaming bucket of sloppy shit, sloppy-sloppy shit, I am quite anxious to see this, as I am NO COUNTRY FOR OLD MEN. Both of which I am formally here predicting will be nominated for Best Picture, but will lose to AMERICAN GANGSTER, which one CHUD reviewer recently called the UNFORGIVEN of the gangster genre.

I don't know if AMERICAN GANGSTER that good, but it's damn good, and likely far more appealing to widespread mainstream tastes.

I think the Oscars are phony and pandering bullshit ceremonies of pablum, but it's still fun to play the guessing game. Also, I want one. Now.

September 2012

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