2016 is now behind us and I think we’re all ready to get things going in a positive direction. I ended the year being sick for more than a month, first with kidney stones and then a stomach virus that set up camp with no intent of leaving without some serious antibiotics. I’m seeing the light at the end of the tunnel for both (still have a stent in my kidney which is GTFO ASAP. Embrace every day you are healthy, getting knocked out of commission for any amount of time is a serious bummer.
My movie reviews took a back seat to TV as just about all of my favorite content was coming on strong for the medium until the holiday break. I peppered some movies in here and there in the past 2 weeks. And of course there is a ton of stuff on Netflix to check out (just started S3 of the Dusk Til Dawn series and Anthony Bourdain: Parts Unknown with plans to start The OA soon,)
Some TV highlights outside of watching the NY Rangers put on a clinic, hit a rut and now hopefully pulling the A team back together. Got into Vice News Tonight on HBO and I watch The Late Show with Stephen Colbert religiously. Ink Master had a quality season Obviously, I was on Shameless like a frog on a Junebug. The comedy shows I watch (Bob’s Burgers, Modern Family, Brooklyn 99) have remained strong. My extremely brief take on The Walking Dead is ‘serious pacing issues.’ When you have a cast that large and only care for maybe half of them, any diversion away from those key people (neutering Carol again and beating us over the head that yes, Negan is a bad guy) it more often feels like meandering than entertainment. The ex-Top Gear boys rode back with The Grand Tour and it’s often a treat to see them at it again.
The standard cable shows are returning shortly and a few hard hitters are coming back for new seasons. Homeland sounds like they’re shifting gears which is much needed and Black Sails is ending with Season 4. Last year was brilliant and I’m both happy and sad to see the end of one of my favorite shows. FaceOff took a big break and is returning at the end of the month.
Korn put out a killer album that made me very happy (gushing review is here) and Run the Jewels snuck out RTJ3 just before the new year and it’s also great.
Movie wise, some quick hits:
Yoga Hosers– The best way I’ve seen this Kevin Smith movie described is: it’s like watching someone’s home movie that had a great budget. It’s super stupid (it knows it) and is a project for Smith’s daughter Harley and her friend Rose (Depp) to have fun. Kevin says he made it for tween girls and I think that’s a fair assessment. Spawned from a goofy idea on a stoner podcast, Kevin did all the ground work to get this little picture made. Even if you hate it, you have to recognize and respect the indie spirit.
Point Break (2015)- Yeah, watch the original. This remake does nothing better. While competent (by modern cinema standards) I couldn’t help but shrug this entire movie off. Maybe if the changed the name and tried to make it more original it would stand up better, but there is very little fun and exhilaration here that the original did so well. Sure the landscapes and real stuntwork are good (far expanding the ‘extreme sport’ umbrella the first did) but it’s coated in so much CG it gets numbing.
Spectral– A surprise treat from Netflix. Sci-fi action (with many nods to Aliens) done well. It’s about the US military calling for extra brains to help out with a new threat on the battlefield somewhere in Europe. Well written, paced and acted. Looks like they got the entire budget on screen because it looks really good.
Finally, I started writing my book 4 years ago. I’m really close to the end. I’m thinking 5 chapters close. Being sick derailed me for a while and I’m now burning to get this last bit out of me and onto the page. I think I have a legit sellable story here and I just got to get it done. Even when I write “the end” in the coming weeks, I have to go back to the beginning and fine tune work I haven’t touched in a long time. While I have much more work to do with it, I’ve never been closer to such a huge personal accomplishment. Still need to think up a good title.
Posts in 2016: 126