Archive for January, 2010

5 Star Wars items they shockingly haven’t made yet

Posted in humor, movies, pop culture, Star Wars with tags , , , on January 26, 2010 by Paxton

George Lucas is a media merchandising whore. There is not one other property that consistently sells billions of dollars of toys and merchandise to consumers than Star Wars. Not one.  And Star Wars has been doing it since 1977.  So it’s not surprising to think of the breadth of items that have been released with the Star Wars logos all over them.  I myself did a very popular story (that pretty much changed the world) about hilariously inappropriate Star Wars items.  There isn’t a lot of items that are man-made that haven’t had some type of tie-in to Star Wars.

However, I have come up with a few items that have yet to be produced.  Below are 5 Star Wars branded items that surprisingly have NOT been made yet.  And George really needs to get on this because these items are AWESOME.  They would easily give Lucas that little extra pocket money he so desperately needs right about now.

The Emporer Taser1 The Emporer Taser 2
The Emperor Collector Series Taser Gun – One of my favorite scenes in the Star Wars movies is the final Death Star Showdown between Jedi Luke, Darth Vader and The Emperor.  When The Emperor pulled out Sith Lightning after Luke had defeated his father, I was like, “OH S**T!!  WTF WAS THAT!?”  Sith Lightning is BADASS.  So I think it’s a natural to take The Emperor, Sith Lightning and Taser guns, mix well, and give them to law enforcement and kids.  Imagine thousands of kids playing Death Star in the backyard, whipping out The Emperor Taser gun, whispering, “And now young Skywalker, you will die” and then unleashing the full stunning fury of blue Sith Lightning on their brother or sister.   Can you imagine a cop that wouldn’t shout “Your feeble skills are no match for the power of the Darkside” before he tases the crap out of a degenerate criminal?  It would be GLORIOUS!!!

Darth Vader Asthma Inhaler Darth Vader Asthma Inhaler 2
Darth Vader Asthma Inhaler – It’s quite obvious that Vader has a bit of an asthma problem.  Listening to Vader wheeze his way through three and a half movies is like listening to Rosie O’Donnell walk a flight of steps.  Maybe we should use this to give confidence to kids with asthma.  “See, Darth Vader has asthma and he destroyed an entire PLANET!”  I can just imagine the commercial now, Darth Vader in the Death Star planning room.  One of the Moffs starts choking and weezing and you think Vader is choking him with the power of The Force.  Instead, Vader says, “Your lack of breath is disturbing” then hands the out of breath officer the Darth Vader Asthma Inhaler.  The Moff takes a few puffs and the meeting can resume to pats on Vader’s back for a job well done.  Excuse me while I head to the patent office website to copyright that “lack of breath” line I just came up with.  GENIUS!

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Year End Book Report: The best books I read in 2009

Posted in Book Report, books, reviews with tags , , , on January 21, 2010 by Paxton

Badass Book Report

I don’t read books like I watch movies.  Most of the books I read in a year didn’t come out that year.  I will rarely read a brand new book the year it is released.  Part of that is because I don’t like reading hardback books.  I prefer sitting down with a nice paperback.  It just feels right.  Are there exceptions?  Of course there are.  Harry Potter.  Dan Brown.  Larry Bird.  All of these will get me to buy a hardback book and read it the moment it is released.  As a matter of fact, two of those three authors released hardback books this year that I got and read (Dan Brown and Larry Bird).  Did they make my favorites list?  Wait and see.

I’ve never really done a book list for this blog and that’s mainly because I’ve never kept a good, consistent log of what I read in a given year.  This past year, however, I did start keeping a detailed log of books I read.  I kept a log in previous years, but it includes only about half the books I read and very little detail about the book.  In Jan 2009 I started keeping track of more data and I did it with consistency (which is key).  I keep it in a spreadsheet on Google.  Well, it started in a book journal called Book Lust (which Steph gave me for Xmas 2008), but then, when I completed the journal on New Year’s Eve I moved it to Google Spreadsheet.

Here’s the Google Spreadsheet containing my book log

The first tab on the left is all the data for every year in the spreadsheet.  Then the tabs moving to the right are each year broken out by itself.  2009 has the most data, 2008 is fairly complete, but 2007 is almost bare.

Perusing my book log I see I finished 52 books last year.  That’s a book a week.  Not bad.  It’s almost exactly the number of 2009 movies I saw last year (53).  Eerie.  Anyway, like I said, most of the books I read were not released in 2009.  The only books actually released in 2009 that I read were Star Wars: Death Troopers, The Lost Symbol by Dan Brown and When the Game Was Ours by Larry Bird and Magic Johnson.

So, without further ado, here are my five favorite books I read in 2009 (in no particular order).

When the Game Was Ours
When the Game Was Ours by Larry Bird and Magic Johnson – Okay, I know I just said these books were in no particular order, but I lied.  Every book but this one is in no particular order.  This book was my favorite book I read last year, and I didn’t even get it until Christmas day and then I read it in 3 days.  Fantastic, fantastic book.  A great look back at one of the greatest times in NBA history, the razzle, dazzle 1980s, by two of the game’s greatest stars, Larry Bird and Magic Johnson.  I can’t even begin to describe how great this book is.  If you are a fan of basketball, especially back in the ’70s, ’80s and early ’90s, then you owe it to yourself to READ THIS BOOK.  Hell, I’ve followed Larry Bird since the ’80s, I read his autobiography, Drive (TWICE!), as well has his book on coaching, Bird Watching, and I STILL came out with information I’ve never known before.  Larry and Magic discuss in frank detail what it was like to be them and playing each other.  AWESOME.

Percy Jackson series
Percy Jackson and the Olympians (Books 1 -5) by Rick Riordan – I’m counting these as one.  I read Books 1-4 in 2009.  I started Book 5 on Jan 1, 2010.  But, the series, I think, should be judged as a whole.  This is one fantastic series.  For those lamenting the ending of Harry Potter, this is a great series to read to fill that gap.  Of the five books, four of them easily belong on this list.  EASILY.  Book 2, while good, is not great.  Almost a little boring.  But Books 3-5 are so unbelievably fantastic that I can easily give Book 2 a pass.  I hear Riordan may be retiring Percy Jackson after Book 5, but the world he’s created with the Greek/Roman gods and demigods will continue on in another series.  I can’t wait to start those too because the world Riordan created is fascinating and fun.  If you love Harry Potter and/or Greek/Roman mythology, you will LOVE this series.  I can’t wait for the movie of Book 1 in February.

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Movies the Cavalcade is looking forward to in 2010

Posted in Harry Potter, movies with tags , on January 19, 2010 by Paxton

Coming Soon

Okay, so we’ve looked back at the best and worst movies from 2009 (Oscar noms and ceremony still to come).  Now let’s take a gaze into the future.  What movies am I looking forward to in 2010?  There are a lot.

Here’s a list of movies I really want to see in 2010, more will surely be added as the year’s movie release schedule becomes more concrete.

These first four movies have already been released and are currently in theaters.

Daybreakers (Jan 8 ) – A cool vampire movie similar in tone to Blade?  Thank you, Hollywood. Peep the trailer here.

Youth in Revolt (Jan 8 ) – I read this book a few years ago and it’s funny.  I can’t wait to see Michael Cera tackle this highly comedic but dark role. Trailer, my friends.

Book of Eli (Jan 15) – Denzel Washington vs Gary Oldman in a post apocalyptic world fighting over a book that can save humanity?  I’ll take two.  UPDATE:  Saw this on Sunday.  It’s pretty awesome.  Lots of action and a surprisingly deep story.

Legion (Jan 22) – Well, this isn’t out just yet.  It starts on Friday.  Paul Bettany is a fallen angel out to protect the would-be savior of mankind.  Demons and angels fighting a war on Earth?  Hells to the YEAH.  Trailer is here.

From here we look at future releases starting in February.

From Paris with Love (Feb 5) – Jonathan Rhys Meyers (The Tudors) pairs up with Travolta as FBI agents in Paris who attempt to stop a terrorist attack. It looks good, and Travolta plays an over-the-top “renegade” cop.  However, seeing Travolta play “over the top” in Taking of Pelham 1-2-3, I’m now a little nervous.  I’m just sayin. Here’s the trailer.

The Wolfman (Feb 12) – Universal re-launches a movie based on my favorite monster?  With Sir Anthony Hopkins?  You can count me my AIS (Ass.  In.  Seat.).

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The Movie Board: Worst movies of 2009

Posted in Academy Awards, movies, Oscars, reviews with tags , , , , , on January 13, 2010 by Paxton

Movie Board

Okay, on Tuesday, you saw my favorite movies of 2009. These were all the movies I really enjoyed and will probably watch multiple times. Now, it’s time to look at what I think were the worst movies of 2009.

What makes a bad movie for me, for the most part, is disappointment because of expectations. I expect to really enjoy the movie because of a funny trailer or an interesting story and the movie doesn’t live up to those expectations. Those are the movies that go on this list. There are movies like Crank or Fast & Furious that you would expect to be on here, but let’s be honest, those movies are supposed to be bad. They are awful for a reason. Plus they are fun-awful, not awful-awful.

Before we get started, take a look back at previous years’ lists with my worst movies of 2007 and my worst movies of 2008 articles.

So here are the movies I was most disappointed with this year. Honestly, I could only come up with four. I really had a hard time putting together this list. There were a lot of good movies this year.  Here are the movies I really didn’t like.

Men Who Stare At Goats
Men Who Stare At Goats – This was a very disappointing movie for me. The trailer was awesome, however they pretty much showed every single punchline for every single funny scene in the trailer. EVERY SINGLE ONE. The rest of the movie was an awkwardly quirky ride that was neither funny nor interesting.  So by the time I saw the movie, every funny event was spoiled and that made me not care about the rest of the movie.  So many good actors, so much wasted potential.  And, to whomever cut the trailer, thank you for ruining this movie for me, d-bag.

Gamer – This movie had so much promise.  Gerard Butler as a prisoner fighting in some type of corporate war games run by Michael C Hall? Oh, and Gerard Butler is being controlled remotely by a video game user played by the kid who’s going to be the lead in the Percy Jackson and the Olympians movie? Yes, please. However this movie BLEW. It was weird, there wasn’t enough action or humor and the mechanics of the video war games Gerard Butler’s character participates in came and went depending on what was needed in the story. Michael C Hall was good but his character was off the charts weird. This was just a bad movie based on a very solid premise.

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The Movie Board: My favorite movies of 2009

Posted in Academy Awards, movies, Oscars, reviews, sequels, Star Trek with tags , , , , , , on January 12, 2010 by Paxton

Movie Board

Okay, everyone. We are finally here. We are at the point where I glance up at my 2009 Movie Board and try to figure out what were my favorite movies of 2009. For those scoring at home, here’s the Movie Board for this year:

Movie Board 2009

As you can see, I saw 53 movies that were released in 2009 (and therefore are eligible for the Oscars).  Some of those movies were in the theater (the majority of them, actually) and some were at home on Blu-Ray.  That’s 4.42 movies per month. Up from last year. Also, I was able to top 50 movies for the first time since 2007. So, I’m excited about that.  Last year my total was 49, so I was a bit irked I didn’t make it.  This year, I’m back, baby!

For those just joining us this year, or for those that like reliving the past, check out my favorite movie picks in my Movie Board articles for 2007 and 2008.  I myself like to look back every year before I write this article, just to get in the movie pickin’ mood.

This was a really good year for movies. I saw a metric TON of good flicks in 2009.  I really had a hard time getting this list down to my favorite movies of the year.  As usual, I’m just picking my favorite five.  My own personal “best” list.  You may agree, you may disagree.  Regardless, I’m right, so pipe down and prepare to be told what 5 movies rocked my world this year.

Okay, 2009 movies, let’s do this.

Star Trek 2009
Star Trek – Blew my ass away. I’d take a picture of my ass to prove it to you, but you wouldn’t see anything but a blank space, because it was BLOWN AWAY.  I saw this movie twice in theaters because I had my ass kicked so incredibly hard the first time, I had to go back to be sure it wasn’t an illusion.  And it wasn’t.  I laughed and cried (yes, I f’n cried) at all the exact same spots on both viewings.  Then, my dad gave me the movie for Xmas and I watched it again on Blu-Ray and was reduced to a blubbering, laughing mess for a THIRD TIME.  THIS MOVIE IS FANTASTIC.  I can’t place this movie high enough on the list to get across how much I love this movie.  JJ Abrams gets it.  Orci and Kurtzman get it.  The actors get it.  This movie was Star Trek, warts and all.  I know some people were bitching about the plot holes and time travel, but I invite those haters to SHUT THEIR CHEETOS HOLES.  If you have watched any of the original series episodes from the ’60s (which I’ve been doing) then this movie fits right in.  I put this movie up there with Wrath of Khan and Undiscovered Country as my favorite Star Trek movie.  I balled when George Kirk died.  I laughed and pumped my fist when Kirk beats the Kobayashi-Maru.  I marveled at the final battle with Nero.  I couldn’t have asked for a better Star Trek movie.  PERIOD.  Best.  Movie.  This.  Year.  Take that to the bank, haters.

District 9
District 9 – I read a lot of the press for this movie before it opened.  A small sci-fi film from South Africa produced by Peter Jackson and written/directed by a little known but talented guy named Neill Blomkamp.  I knew most of the movie is done in a mock documentary style about aliens that have come to Earth.  That’s about all I knew, but it looked like a really clever idea and I was excited to see it.  I had no idea what I was in for.  Fantastic.  This movie blends CGI, practical effects and live action in an unbelievably seamless way.  The aliens are all CGI, but they are REAL.  This is no Jar Jar Binks, my friends.  Also, even though it’s only used for the first 2/3 of the movie, the mockumentary structure really works.  This is just a wonderful sci-fi movie.  Some of the movie review guys on the Internets that I respect even put this in their best of the year.  Devin over at CHUD put it #4 in his top 15 of the year and both Massawyrm and Harry Knowles over at Aint It Cool News put it #1 on their lists.  I absolutely agree.  This movie deserves to be seen.  It’s awesome.  I can’t recommend it enough.  Hopefully we’ll see a nomination for Special Effects as well as Best Screenplay (fingers crossed).

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