Ahh, my DVD copy of the live action Masters of the Universe film finally arrived. And of course I had to er... inspect it for shipping damage. Yes, yes... that's it.
It was pretty much exactly as I recall. Fun beginning and end, but the whole part in the middle could be dropped. Basically any scene without Frank Langella needs to be dropped. Such a harmonious blend of good acting and writing! He really did have all the best lines (and capitalized on them fully).
What we need now is a collaborative film with Frank Langella, Ian McKellan, Ian McDiarmid, and Christopher Lee. All four as dignified, scheming, dramatic bad guys. And we've got to do this soon! They're not getting any younger. If that was done well, I would buy two copies of the DVD just to support the filmmakers. It doesn't even matter who the good guys are (throw in Harrison Ford as Indy or something). :)
I saw Superman Returns yesterday. Not bad... it is a likeable movie, though it didn't blow me away as it seems to have done for some other people. In my opinion, there was too much effort to put a "contemporary" spin on the classic versions. This is visible both in the visual effects (including costuming and lighting) and in the story development (particularly with regard to Lois, though I'll stay spoiler-free here).
So overall, I would rate the movie "slightly above average." I liked it better than X-Men III (which isn't that difficult a feat), but not as well as I liked Batman Begins. I tend to be more of a Batman fan than Superman anyway.
And of course I'm going to have to give points to any movie that casts Frank "Skeletor" Langella (even in a supporting role).
So if you're a fan of the old movies, comics, or cartoons... there is a chance you will find something here that will take you on that trip down memory lane (even if it's only the John Williams score). But these also aren't exactly the same characters you grew up getting to know.
Fun times. In honor of tonight's concert, today at work was officially deemed "Jimmy Buffet Day." Instead of suits and ties, Hawaiian shirts and straw hats were the order of the day. Which led me to the startling revelation that I don't actually own a Hawaiian shirt. Something that perhaps I should remedy?
Yay, election day! :) I always feel giddy after participating in the electoral process. Good times.
I would like to state my dissatisfaction with the new ballot format. This is the first election since we switched from punch cards to "fill in the box with this ball point pen." The boxes are ridiculously huge, too. Have you ever tried to create an evenly-shaded region on a piece of paper with a ballpoint pen? It's like scratching a lottery ticket with a toothpick. Many, many times.
I'd be perfectly happy going back to the punch cards. I never had a problem with a hanging chad, but apparently that system is too complex for the folks in Palm Beach County. So now we must all suffer the token "election reforms" designed to make it look like the election board is addressing their issue. Except when the "disenfranchisement" is such a blatant case of PEBKAC, is there really even a point?
I've had some time recently to reflect on my own decision-making processes. It's interesting (to me), but I seem to be much better at suggesting courses of action for other people than I am at making up my own mind. Or at least that's my perception of reality.
When someone comes to me with a problem, everything seems so clear-cut and simple. "If I were you, I would do such and such." Having written those words now in the journal, they look every bit as arrogant as I knew they would. Who am I to give advice to others, or to believe I have even a rudimentary understanding of their situations? Particularly when my own troubles plunge me into chaos.
But oddly enough, this seems to have a way of being spun into something of benefit for me. When I'm floundering about a decision of my own, things seem much clearer if I picture myself in an imaginary conversation with a friend who wants help with that problem. By divorcing myself from the swirl of emotions, fears, and expectations, I can analyze the situation with at least some degree of objectivity. Wise things I've been told and words I've read now flow freely to the forefront, whereas before they were strained and suppressed. Sometimes I succeed at my aim and sometimes I fail miserably, but at least I feel like my mind is participating in the decision.
Making the rounds for regular health checkups this month. Today was vision, next will be dental, followed by medical. It's been at least five years since my last eye exam (I'm sure I've had these glasses since I started school), so it seemed like I was about due.
Happily everything seems to be fine. My right eye is about the same, and my left eye is just slightly weaker. This is apparently why my vision hasn't seemed as sharp during the last six months or so. So what the heck, I'll spring for a new pair of glasses (there goes the tax refund). :)
In a display of iron resolve, I was able to get through the glaucoma test the first time without ruining the results by flinching. Also, my eyes are still dilated from the drops as I type this. It's kind of a strange feeling, not being able to focus on text closer than two feet away. Not an altogether pleasant feeling, either. It's like crawling through a small tunnel without having room to turn around... a sense of helplessness. Fortunately only temporary, but it does give me a better appreciation for what I normally take for granted.
Ever have one of those days when everyone seems irate with no common link except your presence? Honestly I'm not sure what it is. It's all for different crazy reasons, but today I seem to excel at inadvertently pushing people's buttons.
Believe it or not, I'm still slowly working my way through The Silmarillion. I do tend to take my time reading, but this has been a little slow even for me. Still, it's a very enjoyable read... I love digging into histories and backstories like this. Subtle little references to things from the LoTR trilogy that aren't flaunted, but are left sitting on the table for you to either recognize or discard.
The buzz in town today was about President Bush's visit to Indian Hill (and mostly the effect his motorcade would have on Interstate traffic).
This got me thinking, and I know this will probably sound silly. But just knowing he's in town gives me a warm feeling of security. It's like have a patriarchal figure watching over you, and knowing he's in your corner if trouble rears its ugly head.
Intellectually, I know this flies in the face of what the founding fathers intended, and what the President should be. We're his boss, not the other way around. We should be ever watchful of all our leaders, not overly trusting. And of course I realize there's a segment of the population out there that isn't enthusiastic about him (as is the case with any official, really).
Maybe it's all that conditioning throughout grade school. Or all the movies in which a valorous President marshals forces to trounce the bad guys and protect those under his care. Or even a desire to indulge some sense of self-importance, being able to think "I helped make this possible with my vote."
It's not like I actually saw him today, or was even in the general vicinity through which he passed. Why should it matter so much whether he's ten miles away or five hundred miles away?
This morning I saw two deer in the parking lot at work. Not just on the fringes, but actually on the pavement and wandering gradually toward the trees. Seeing animals in pairs is supposed to be auspicious Feng Shui, but it was a somewhat surreal moment with these unfamiliar visitors against the backdrop of the now familiar concrete and buildings.
Driving to work, the cold morning breeze, and seeing large animals... I can't help but be reminded of the zoo. No one I know would still be there, but I wonder what it would be like to cross the lake one more time.