Bullets Are No One’s Friend


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Apparently not even cops getting shot over the past week is enough to move gun control legislation forward. Not even watered down bills, one sponsored by Iowa Senator Chuck Grassley, passed in Congress. It’s just as ridiculous as the NRA ignoring the police killings of two black men who owned guns legally by the laws of their respective states. The shit hasn’t just hit the fan, it’s traveled into the stratosphere. Things might only get worse from here, unfortunately. It also doesn’t help that Congress is literally owned by the NRA, an organization dedicated to serving the gun lobby. Sales are important than saving lives, I guess.

Going back a decade or so I was very pro gun. What’s changed isn’t just the amount of violence that has occurred in America over that period. It’s also my feeling that things need to change, that banning assault weapons and enacting strong background checks everywhere is a must. Plus gun and even hunter safety courses (I’ve successfully completed the last one). I’m not a fan of handguns, either, or concealed carry. In fact the mayor of Dallas said that during the mayhem those open carrying made it harder to tell who was a friend or foe.

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Look I get that new measures or even just stringently enforcing current laws might not be enough. Yet we have to do something, and it needed to be done yesterday. It’s not enough to simply change police culture to the point where racist officers are drummed out, or make it harder for criminals and terrorists to obtain weapons (a bill addressing that last one also failed). Black Lives Matter is a start, too, but this is only the beginning. Maybe one day the body count won’t be so high. Hopefully.

Horrorfest 2015 Presents: Vampire In Brooklyn (1995, Wes Craven)


Lost in the discussion about Wes Craven’s career is that he engaged in comedic moments in many of his horror films. One such movie was Vampire In Brooklyn, a rather entertaining and fun horror comedy that has some good funny moments and even a few scares. Eddie Murphy in a rare horror movie role stars as a vampire seeking a cop played by Angela Bassett, who happens to be half human and half vampire. Without her the line of vampires from the Caribbean will finally die off. This movie has some decent homages to previous vampire films, and is also Wes Craven’s own take on the sub genre.

Much like some of his other films Craven presents social and political commentary. Murphy turns into a preacher and manages to convince an entire congregation that they should turn to evil. Unfortunately considering the hate many so called Christians push today such a moment is relevant and also darkly humorous to a degree. Also you have the police failing to comprehend and understand what they are dealing with, another theme that is prevalent in not only Craven’s work but also in many horror movies. I rather like how Craven is able to balance humor and horror, two genres that are tricky to get right.

Also it’s cool that he cast Zakes Mokae as a vampire hunter, since he was a horror veteran and he was great in The Serpent and the Rainbow, another Craven film. John Witherspoon and Kadeem Hardison provide additional comedic relief, yet it is Bassett who gives a strong performance and has superb chemistry with Murphy. It’s too bad that Eddie Murphy only made one horror film as he has a menacing presence. Despite its flaws this is an good, solid movie and is an example of how vampire movies contain views on society, religion and repressed feelings.

Horrorfest 2015 Presents: Q The Winged Serpent (1982, Larry Cohen)


Out of all the monster films I’ve watched over the years Q: The Winged Serpent is rather bizarre. After all this is a movie about a cult that brings to life a freaky God creature that flies around and devours people. Plenty of awesome and entertaining moments there, not to mention Cohen once again directing a film set in New York where people are being killed by a strange force and the police are investigating.

What makes this film also interesting is the performances of Michael Moriarty and David Carradine. Moriarty plays a criminal piano player that stumbles onto the creature’s nest and being a crook naturally demands money for leading the police to the monster. Carradine’s police officer is a man too smart for his own good, who runs up against the fact that the police don’t like conspiracies. Much easier to simply tackle a beast flying around Manhattan as it kills people.

Despite being rather cheesy and not being quite as developed or as well made as some of his films this one is still rather solid. Also the creature effects are claymation, which is a nice touch. The 1980s didn’t have enough big monster movies save for the ones from Japan and a few others, which is kind of a shame as I love me a good big angry monster movie.

Your Worst Inhibitions Tend To Psych You Out In The End


Gus and Shawn are a great pair together. Shawn happens to be the son of a legendary policeman named Henry, while Gus is his life long friend and companion. Sure this show at times reminds me of Sherlock Holmes and John Watson yet it has a unique twist: Shawn pretends to be a psychic. The police use them as consultants although they also have their own private detective agency. Lassiter and Juliet are the two police detectives who put up with their shenanigans as they all try to solve cases every episode.

What I love about this show is the rapport that Gus and Shawn have with each other. The jokes come fast and are rather sharp. Also the supporting cast is fantastic. You also have Henry, who is the reason why Shawn has a heavily observant ability in the first place. Although the show lacks a true arc save for some episodes there are requiring characters and the show does focus on certain aspects.

One of them being Shawn’s dangerous twisty game with an infamous serial killer. The other being Shawn and Juliet being near perfect for each other. Also the major underlying theme of the show is that Gus and Shawn have to keep up the idea that Shawn is psychic. If the police find out Shawn could be in serious trouble. However thanks to the pair’s gift for getting themselves in and out of trouble such worries are pushed aside.

Many episodes are hilarious and I am working back through Psych while anticipating the last season, which is not on Netflix. I do reflect on the show’s joyous aspect plus its great sense of humor and style. The USA Network has some good shows yet I’ve grown mostly attached to Psych over the years. Also its theme song rules.

Road Ragin’


Some jackass almost hit me the other day while driving their red truck. It’s called right of way man, yet this person clearly failed to understand a simple classic rule of the road. And people wonder about how someone gets road rage. The shitty drivers in this town are enough to drive anyone crazy. I’ve had bad road rage for years and its unlikely to abate in the near present or future.

Of course my town has red light cameras, and its because of all the awful drivers in the area who speed, fail to properly stop, and engage in bad driving behavior. It’s gotten to the point where people from other places who get hit with speeding tickets from the cameras have complained in my town’s local paper. Well there are speed traps everywhere, and in the case of these cameras the police were able to justify them as a result of people driving like idiots. In short, you brought this on yourselves folks.

Although  I will say that the few good drivers out there do make traveling rather easy and maybe enjoyable. Not everyone drives like they failed driver’s ed, and for that I am glad. Now would those who drive slow in the left lane kindly piss off and move into the slow lane. For all of our sakes.

Favorite Songs: Part XVII


I became a fan of Kavinsky thanks to “Nightcall” off of the Drive OST and YouTube lead me to this fantastic and groovy electronic driven piece that I love a lot. Especially since “Pacific Coast Highway” tells the story of a driver with supernatural abilities who eludes the police at every turn. Cool.

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