Now “I Am Legend” makes sense

I did not like "I Am Legend". It was all wrong, especially the ending. For example, why were the darkies attacking humans? They couldn’t possibly need human flesh to survive or they’d all be dead. Fewer humans, less food, no darkies. So why were there so many of them? And then what Will Smith’s character does at the end was not at all consistent with who he is. I didn’t like the movie at all – I said as a science fiction book it would never survive.

Turns out "I Am Legend" was a book first and the movie makers changed the ending! Go see the alternate ending for "I Am Legend" that will leave you feeling much better about the movie.

Movie Review: Home of the Brave

I don’t usually recommend too many movies but I have to say I thought Home of the Brave was a good movie. It’s about some reservists who come home from Iraq and have a hard time fitting back into their old lives.

Frank also thought it was good although he was quick to point out that not everyone that comes home from Iraq is that messed up!  As I’ve told him before, I think it’s amazing they aren’t all more messed up.  If I got mugged or witnessed a shooting, people would recommend I go to counseling.  We send people to Iraq to shoot people and get shot at and they lose friends and when they come home – with no counseling – we’re surprised that they might not find life at home just like they left it?

Frank also suggested that reservists might have the toughest transition of all.  They go straight from Iraq to home.  He thinks they’d do better if they served state side for a few months as a transition state – with a peer group who’s been in Iraq.

Home of the Brave is worth watching.

Save your time, skip this movie

If you like stupid comedies and bad horror movies, Planet Terror might be the movie for you.  I don’t like stupid comedies nor any kind of horror movie, so I agreed to watch it for Bruce Willis.  If, like me, you watch it for Bruce Willis, here’s a tip: watch the movie until you see Bruce’s first 60 second scene … then fast forward to the end and watch his second, and last, 60 second scene.  You won’t miss anything in middle.  Trust me.

A much better movie (if you are trying to satisfy a bad horror need when you hate the genre) is From Dusk Till Dawn.  George Clooney and Juliette Lewis are actually in the movie.  It’s not bad … if you’re into that kind of dark horror movie.  It might even be watchable if you hate horror movies.

They are both directed by Robert Rodriguez – I really liked the book about his story about how he became a director.  I just realized I never blogged about it!  In Rebel without a Crew: Or How a 23-Year-Old Filmmaker With $7,000 Became a Hollywood Player, Robert Rodriguez writes about how he becomes a movie director by just doing it.  He makes home movies with his brothers and sisters and no budgets.  It’s a good story even if you have no desire to ever become a movie director.

Netflix or

Yesterday I wrote that Blockbuster has lost to Netflix.  Today I think the new battle to watch will be Unbox versus Netflix.  They both have downloadable movies and tv shows that you can watch on your computer.  Right now Amazon has the better solution because it has a much better selection of movies.  Amazon lets you "rent" movies or TV shows for $.99-$1.99 and you can watch them for 30 days.   You can also buy them so that you can watch them whenever you want.  Netflix program is similar but the movie selection isn’t nearly as good – mostly old titles.  The main advantage to the Netflix program is that if you are already a Netflix customer, you don’t need to pay anything for the service.

Watch any movie, anytime you want where ever you are.  (As long as you have a computer – which for people like me is all the time.)

Movie Review: Death Proof

Once again Quentin Tarantino shows that he’s not your average director.  His movies may be a tad bit too violent, but nobody will ever call them boring.  This one also has some fun loving, tough women.   Not deep but not boring. 

We never did find out why the bad guy wants to kill all the pretty women but I still liked the ending.

Book review: The Secret

First off, there are three versions of the Secret by Rhonda Byrne:

  • the book, The Secret.
  • the audiobook, The Secret.  This contains many different people’s voices, presumably from the movie version.
  • the movie, The Secret DVD!  Most of the reviews you’ve seen are about the movie.

I listened to the audiobook version.

I think how you are introduced to a book greatly influences how much you like it or at least how open you are to liking it.  I first heard about The Secret from a group of friends who watched the movie together and they couldn’t say enough good about it.  I was supposed to beg, steal or borrow a copy to watch!  So I downloaded the audiobook version.  I enjoyed it but if I hadn’t listened to The Attractor Factor first, I would have dismissed it all as hokey.  The Secret introduces the law of attraction with a lot of hype and very big promises.  They make it seem like it is possible to wish a bike or a winning lottery ticket into existence through sheer will power.  Now while I believe that remaining positive and open will mean that many more opportunities will be available to you than if you are always negative, I don’t think you can wish tomorrow’s winning lottery ticket into your hand.  So while the audiobook was uplifting and positive, it was a bit unrealistic.  So, I wonder, if I’d read this negative review first, or if I hadn’t learned about the law of attraction from The Attractor Factor, I wonder if I would have liked The Secret at all?  Would the negative review have set me up to think negatively about it, would I have concentrated on the hokiness and would I be writing a really negative review now?  If so, it just goes to show you that thinking positive brings positive results (I enjoyed listening to the book) and thinking negative brings negative results (I might not have made it through the book!)  On the influencing positively side, The Secret made the top ten list at and The New York Times.  Does that make you want to read it now?

How long do you keep your Netflix movies?

The Wall Street Journal has an article about an interesting phenomena that I’ve experienced – putting a movie on your Netflix queue and then keeping it for months because you never get around to watching it: For Some Netflix Users, Red Envelopes Gather Dust.  While it didn’t really explain why people do that, it did report what type of movies they do it with:

The researchers found that when people chose movies to watch the same day, they often picked comedies or action films. But when they were asked to pick movies to watch at a later date, they were more likely to make "high-brow" selections.

For example, the subjects were much more likely to select Steven Spielberg’s Holocaust survival drama "Schindler’s List" to watch in the future, rather than on the same night. "It’s a movie that’s really miserable to watch but you feel like you should watch it," said George Loewenstein, a professor of economics and psychology at Carnegie Mellon University, one of the study’s authors.

Interestingly enough, Frank doesn’t have this problem.  He watches all our Netflix movies immediately.  I give him a hard time because watching the movies becomes almost like a "todo list action item" or a chore – one he never procrastinates on.  But we never have movies sitting around for months.   (He used to wait for me to watch them too but he’s given up on that and if I don’t watch it with him, he just returns it.  Which works for me!) 

I also do the same thing with books as I did with Netflix – I have several shelves of books that I think are worth reading but they aren’t easy reads and I never seem to get around to actually reading them.

I wonder why we do keep them?  Or why we buy/order them in the first place?


What are the Netflix bar codes for?

It sounds like the NetFlix bar codes are for sorting the movies that are outbound from Netflix.  From this NPR segment, NPR : Netflix Manuever Draws Legal Fight, I learned that:

  • returned movies are opened by hand and an employee manually checks that the DVD matches the envelope and that there are no visible scratches,
  • the movies are then immediately put in an envelope,
  • the envelopes are tailored for the post office system to ensure speedy processing,
  • Netflix sorts the movies by zip code before they deliver them to the post office.

So it sounds like it doesn’t matter if you line up the bar code with the hole in the envelope.  Which makes sense because it’s not orientated to be the default way you’d put the DVD in.

Netflix: Amazingly quick

We put mailed back 3 Netflix movies at the post office Monday at 5pm.  I got 3 emails Tuesday at 7:19am saying they had recieved our movies!  Not even 24 hours after we mailed them!  Amazingly quick.

We got our new movies Wednesday – they were waiting for us in our mailbox when we got home from work.  So 2 day turnaround.