50 Super Bowls? Whoa!


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Okay so my recent Super Bowl picks have not gone well. I blame Pete Carroll for last year and well I can blame him for the previous year, too. So why am I going with the Denver Broncos? Because upsets happen in Super Bowls. I’m hoping this game is special even though I hate Denver. Peyton Manning rocks and so does Cam Newton. This is a premier matchup between old and new quarterbacks.

That said I think if the Broncos play well and the defense shows up they have a great shot. They will need Manning to be efficient and not turn the ball over, and C.J. Anderson and Ronnie Hillman will have to be great to keep Newton, Jonathan Stewart and the Panthers offense off the field. If they fail this could turn nasty in a hurry. Just ask the other Panthers opponents how they faired. Not well.

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Look I can’t shake this gut feeling that Manning will ride off into the sunset a winner. Only Sunday will tell. This will hopefully be a classic. If not, well that’s why booze exists. Happy 50th, NFL. My final score prediction is 23-17, Broncos. Total playoffs record is 7-3. Last week I went 1-1. Also go Greg Olson. Fear the beard.

Feel The Bern


We are only about a month away from the glorious Iowa caucuses. So I’m here to encourage you to vote for Bernie Sanders, the lone candidate in this race who is progressive. He favors helping the middle class, collage affordability, universal health care, ending the drug war and making the top percent pay their fare share. He opposes costly foreign wars, believes in global warming and supports marriage equality.

If these things appeal to you then support him as much as possible. I plan to caucus for Senator Sanders. Look Hillary Clinton is not the worst candidate in the world and Martin O’ Malley would be a good choice in another election year. Still Clinton has tons of baggage and will be easily attacked by Republicans in the general election if nominated. And O’ Malley is polling so low I’m surprised he’s still running for president.

What made me also like Bernie is that he opposed the Iraq War when everyone, Hillary included, voted in favor of invading. Plus his accepting only small non-super Pac money, not being beholden to Wall Street, having a long standing record of supporting civil rights…the list goes on and on. Last time President Obama easily received my support in 2008. Bernie Sanders has my vote, easily. If you are progressive or wanting to support someone awesome, vote for Bernie Sanders.

ARE YOU READY FOR SOME FOOTBALL: Conference Title Game Edition


Overall Record: 6-2. Last Week 3-1

Patriots over Broncos
Panthers over Cardinals

ARE YOU READY FOR SOME FOOTBALL: Divisional Round


More football. Last week I went 3-1. Total record=3-1

Chiefs over Patriots
Cardinals over Packers
Panthers over Seahawks
Broncos over Steelers

Farewell Mr. Bowie


Well he’s gone. 69 years isn’t long enough and he had kept making records, dropping an album off before he departed this mortal plain. David Bowie was so many things and he always kept changing that it’s hard to categorize the man. It’s what he probably wanted, to be this chameleon who feared being left by pop culture. The man shaped his own time, going from humble beginnings to at the top of the charts.

What he means to me can be summed up in his famous Life By Request that he did on A&E years back. Taking a call from a fan named George and smiling while doing so made us realize the shinning idol was after all, human. I refused to accept this since he didn’t seem to age, and thus we were all taking a legend for granted. Something everyone is guilty of from time to time, not comprehending that they could be gone any moment. I wish I could have seen him in concert. So do many others.

When I was a younger man I discovered Bowie through his radio hits, and as I age I have begun to explore his albums. Getting to rediscover his work and also experience songs of his I haven’t heard before is a rare pleasure that is afforded every music fan. Despite him being gone we’ll have his music, films and that great style to recall him by. I’m reminded of Space Oddity, one of my favorite songs from him. “And I’m floating in a tin can far above the world/Planet Earth is blue and there’s nothing I can do…”

2016 Viewing Log


It’s on again:

January:

1. Angel Heart  (1987, Parker)-90, Netflix Instant Viewing
2. A Very Murray Christmas  (2015, Coppola)-85, Netflix Instant Viewing
3. The Crossing Guard (1995, Penn)-83, Netflix Instant
4. Smokin’ Aces 2: Assassins’ Ball (2010, Pesce)-35, Netflix Instant Viewing
5. The Hunter (2011, Nettheim)-88, Netflix Instant Viewing
6. The Revenant (2015, Inarritu)-95, Theater

Movie of the Month: The Revenant (2015, Inarritu)-95, Theater

February:

7. Smoke (1995, Wang and Auster)-93, Netflix Instant Viewing
8. Things To Do In Denver When You’re Dead (1995, Fleder)-83, Netflix Instant Viewing

ARE YOU READY FOR SOME FOOTBALL


Cause I am. It’s already that time of the year.

Wildcard Weekend

Chiefs over Texans
Steelers over Bengals
Redskins over Packers
Seahawks over Vikings

Super Bowl Pick: Panthers over Patriots

Horrorfest 2015 Presents: Late Phases (2014, Adrián García Bogliano)


Ever since the 1980s werewolf movies have become more improved and more interesting. Late Phases works as a slow burning and intense character study that has a fantastic last act. The rest of the film works as a look at a hard man that is paying for the choices he’s made in his life. Unfortunately for him there is a werewolf, and this beast is human the rest of the time. Don’t get too attached to that nice little old lady next door: she gets ripped to shreds. Makes me think of Werewolves of London by Warren Zevon.

Cinema screen tough guy Nick Damici plays Ambrose, a Vietnam War veteran who is haunted by the past. He is also blind, and has just moved into a retirement community. His relationship with his son, Will, played by Ethan Embry, is on the ropes due to Ambrose being kind of a grumpy asshole. In fact, this film spends more time on its characters than the actual creatures that the film is supposed to be about.

I loved the last act and I did like how the film kept me guessing about who the werewolf or werewolves were in the closed gate community. Although Late Phases doesn’t really reinvent the werewolf sub genre it is a really well made and captivating horror film. One of the aspects I enjoy about modern horror is that the best it has to offer is usually well made and very engaging. This film happens to be a good study in how to make the best out of a low budget situation. Also for a low budget film the creature effects were rather solid. Nice.

A Most Wretched Hive of Scum and Villainy


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No I’m not talking about Washington D.C., although that place certainly qualifies. I’m referring to the comments section of any and all Internet news and opinion articles. If you are wondering about Donald Trump followers, terrible people and those who lack the ability to spell or use proper grammar, well look no further then a place that is now part of the Internet. I can’t recall when this became a feature, although I imagine this is as old as message boards.

What’s even worse is the opinions people post. On any given day you can read racist, sexist, homophobic and degrading posts that make one feel the need to take a shower. It’s sad that discourse has rapidly degraded to a level that you have to wonder if these people’s mothers would be ashamed to find out their children do not have any filters. Maybe they were raised that way, a prospect that sounds depressing and unfortunately not too surprising.

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Also the use of insults  (something even I’ve been guilty of) is commonplace on both sides of the political aisle. Many try to assert that it is Republicans largely to blame and yet many Democrats are also guilty of poor behavior. Is there a solution beyond simply avoiding the comments section?

Well encouraging people to behave and hoping for moderators to ban the misbehaving users is maybe the best we can hope for. Acting civily is a good idea, too. Or just skip the comments altogether. I’ll admit they are like a car crash: I can’t look away even though I should.

Favorite Songs: Pale Shelter


Pale Shelter by Tears for Fears is an excellent and new favorite song of mine. The video is also marvelous, further showcasing the great and fast guitar cords and Curt Smith’s melancholy vocals. Roland Orzabal backs him up too and the duo although having other band members were the heart and soul of the group. I recently acquired The Hurting from Half-Priced Books and it is awesome, so this video was posted with that in mind. “You dont give me love you give me pale shelter.”

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