Archive for November, 2006

Illusionist (2006)

IllusionistFour Stars

Who’s in it

Edward Norton, Jessica Biel, Paul Giamatti, Rufus Sewell

Should you see this movie?

Yes. Sarah thought this movie was predictable, and me being the usual “enjoyer I don’t think too much” at movies didn’t see anything happening before it did, therefore I was surprised. A story about a man that creates amazing illusions, kind of like magic but much more, and the woman he loves. They are childhood lovers but are separated by class, but are reunited later in their lives in different circumstances. The acting here is solid, nothing to win an Oscar for, but you really watch this for the ideas and the suspended belief in the truth of whether something is possible. I think most people may like this, unless you are trying to predict how it will end like Sarah, then pass on this. But truly a different and interesting movie set in an interesting period and place.

Why I love the game Pengo

I don’t get this question too often, and you know what they say about opinions. But, if you are interested, this is why I love the game of Pengo so much. (more…)

Match Point (2005)

Match PointTwo Stars

Who’s in it

Jonathan Rhys Meyers, Scarlett Johansson, Brian Cox

Should you see this movie?

No, skip it. I don’t know too much about Woody Allen as a director, and I shouldn’t have expected any less of this movie from the previews, but this movie is depressing, you hate the main character, and the story spirals out of control to the worst end possible. Meyers is this creepy, charming, driven young man who takes it all from the rich lifestyle, but has an affair with his brother in law’s ex fiancee. After she gets pregnant a chilling set of events happen that he miraculous survives, but has to live with the guilt. I watched the clock the whole time during this movie, and although Scarlett is good in the movie, attractive, the previews make it looks a little different. The subject matter isn’t something I would recommend to most, but you insist on seeing it for Scarlett, she is the only redeeming qualilty of the movie, unless you like twisted stories about affairs.

Invincible (2006)

InvincibleFour and a Half Stars

Who’s in it

Mark Wahlberg, Greg Kinnear, Elizabeth Banks

Should you see this movie?

I enjoyed this movie a lot, and I think most people would regardless of whether they like football or not. It’s about a local guy in Philadelphia who gets the chance for an open tryout with the Eagles and against all odds, makes the team. But is a solid feel good movie from Disney, and it was said best when it was said this is “The Rookie” movie but for football. It would have been perfect except for this short bizarre slow motion mud football scene that really does nothing for me and was really distracting. But seriously, see this, Wahlberg is so fat it’s amazing.

Picked up my first Ms. Pac-man

Exciting day, very short and tiring night, but it was worth it.

There were a number of arcade cabinets in Marion, as I mentioned, and I was looking to buy one of the Midway’s that has the same shape as a Ms. Pacman so I could build my own.

But this week I had been watching a local auction on eBay for someone selling a Ms. Pacman that wasn’t working. I looked at the photos, the cabinet appeared to be in good condition, artwork was good and the problem sounded like a simple fix. The Ms. Pac-man was in Columbus, which was the closest one I had seen to this point and for the amount of money he was wanting as an opening bid I decided to see if he would sell it offline. I made the guy an offer, and a couple of hours later he took it! That was the first time I had did that, and it worked, and now I had my favorite game!

So I took the van down to Columbus and picked the machine up and brought it back. I was so pumped, when I first started collecting a Ms. Pac-man was what I really wanted, and I didn’t have to pay an arm and a leg to get it like I had anticipated I might. This Ms. Pac-man has a little bit of a cool back story.

The guy I met was involved with the youth ministry at a church in Columbus. When I pulled up with the van he opened a large freestanding garage that was fairly empty except for this Ms. Pac-man and a Tron (also on eBay, also not working). He started to tell me that these were the last two. He had liked both Tron and Ms. Pac-man growing up and since he had some electrical knowledge the plan was to try to fix them up.

But he could never find the time (shocker!) so it was time to sell them off. He said that the church has purchased an abandoned storage unit in the area of an old operator. Apparently this huge freestanding garage was at one time full of classic games that they had ebayed a number of years back! So at one time he had about 20-30 games, all classics just waiting to make their way into collectors hands.

Obviously I would have liked to have been looking for a Ms. Pac at that time, but it wasn’t in the cards and he didn’t really have any other information about that old operator for me. He just kind of vanished and defaulted on his storage payments.

What to do about the faded sideart?

As I researched and researched, I didn’t feel great about making my own with reproduced artwork, it would just never be the same, but I couldn’t pay the outrageous price that the machines go for, they just were too high. This kind of fell into my lap, and I was glad I didn’t go to Marion, it would have been a ton more work. Check out photos in the Photo Diary section of the machine, and keep posted here and I will try to mention when I get it running.

Ultra Violet (2006)

Ultra VioletOne and a Half Stars

Who’s in it

Milla Jovovich, Cameron Bright, William Fitchner

Should you see this movie?

Milla is pretty to look at in her cool, tight fitting, colorful outfits, and this movie had some cool techie visualizations of what this future world may look like, but overall, it was a POS movie. The acting was horrendous, the action so outrageously unbelieveable, and the plot so simple but yet got so mixed up that you can’t believe you are only 50 minutes in when it seems like hours. Milla is one of a small race of dying people and an extremeist trying to protect her breed, similar to a vampire. She ends up protecting a young boy with her life, who is the cure. But why she feels so strongly, who knows, and how many more roles can this creepy little kid with the blank stare portray. They are all the same, and I am tired of the both of them.

The Punisher (2004)

The PunisherThree and a Half Stars

Who’s in it

Thomas Jane, John Travolta, Will Patton, Rebecca Romijn, Ben Foster

Should you see this movie?

This movie is good, but mostly for me because it is a lot like the comic book. Unless you like intense violence, I would skip this movie, there are some disturbing things that happen, like a scalded face, piercings ripped out, etc. But I like to watch movies that bring my comics to life and I thought Jane is a great cast for Frank Castle. Castle’s whole family is slaughtered by an evil man, and you feel his loss. The whole movie centers around revenge, but has some humor to it, and it is amazing how great of shape Castle is in, makes you feel really slobby. So, yeah, want to see people die and feel like a slob, see this movie. If you like comics though, this is a great rendition and you should check it out.