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June 2011 Archives

June 1, 2011

Shut Up, Crime!

Okay, so, I was in a whiny funk yesterday (shocking, I know). I’d like to add that I did watch and enjoy the following films that are decidedly not about cranky old men:

  • Super
  • Collateral
  • The Evil Dead
  • Evil Dead II
  • Army of Darkness
  • P2 (okay, this one wasn’t actually very good, but I sure did enjoy extended looks at Rachel Nichols’s pushed-up cleavage!)
  • The Untouchables
  • The Last of Sheila
  • L.A. Story
  • Funny People (I seem to remember this getting mixed to negative reviews, and plenty of people I know and respect hated it, but I thought it was great, if ramshackle and uneven — like all Judd Apatow films)
  • Me and You and Everyone We Know
  • Vampire Hunter D
  • Vampire Hunter D: Bloodlust
  • The Woods
  • Telefon (okay, this one is about a cranky old man — but Charles fucking Bronson’s Soviet disdain is tempered by Lee Remick’s middle-aged foxiness and somewhat annoyingly chipper demeanor)

Posted by D. B. Bates at 10:14 AM | Print-Friendly | Comments (0) | Blog Posts, Become What You Are, Pop Culture Rants

June 6, 2011

Sara Getting Married

On May 21st, the date of the Rapture, my best friend got married in Las Vegas, the least likely place for anyone to ascend to heaven. It was an intentionally small affair, which is the only reason I did not attend. I did, however, flirt with the idea of ruining everything by hopping a cheap weekend flight out for the ceremony, but the combination of laziness and cheapness prevented that. Plus, I had to build a desk that weekend. Oh, and there’s the matter of respecting the wishes of my pal — that’s way down on the list, though, because there isn’t a major life event for somebody else that I can’t turn into something about me.

The game plan was to have a small, quick wedding in Vegas and a honeymoon starting in Vegas and touring the American Southwest, known primarily for heat, panoramic vistas, and “land art” projects developed by acid junkies in the ’70s. (Somehow, they missed the 879,000 billboards for The Thing?, arguably the Southwest’s most significant cultural contribution outside the Donner Party.) This would be followed by a reception in the Chicagoland area, known primarily for Al Capone and smoke billowing from flaming downtown records offices, a couple of weeks later. That’s where I enter the story.

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Posted by D. B. Bates at 1:20 PM | Print-Friendly | Comments (0) | Blog Posts, Become What You Are

June 13, 2011

Recurring Dream

Okay, armchair shrinks and hippie psychic types. Time to pull out your dog-eared copies of The Complete Idiot’s Dream Dictionary.

For the past few weeks, I’ve had a dream every other night or so that just seems kinda retarded. I’d be interested in hearing various thoughts about what it could mean, even though I’m pretty sure it just means my brain’s broken. It goes like this: somehow, I am involved in an elaborate stage revival of A Raisin in the Sun. The director has “re-imagined” the play. Gone are the claustrophobic apartment and reams of hyper-articulate, ’60s-stagey dialogue. In their stead, he or she has chosen to set this interpretation in a dank alleyway, under urine-colored lights. The characters are now costumed like a combination of the cast of Do the Right Thing and cheesy ’50s robots. They tell the play’s story solely through interpretive dance.

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Posted by D. B. Bates at 8:52 AM | Print-Friendly | Comments (0) | Blog Posts, Become What You Are, Pop Culture Rants

June 20, 2011

Best Buy: Direct-to-Video Mecca?

At one point in our many long discussions about the strategic focus of The Parallax Review, Matt and I decided to target films that “fell through the cracks” with renewed vigor, adding several columns that specifically targeted the direct-to-video (DTV) market. The first, and probably the most satisfying (for me, at least), we called “Bargain Bin.” We both noticed, when scouring release dates for upcoming DVDs to discuss on the podcast, that a handful of DVDs would come out each month featuring major, recognizable stars in movies nobody had ever heard of.

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Posted by D. B. Bates at 4:01 PM | Print-Friendly | Comments (0) | Blog Posts, Become What You Are, Pop Culture Rants

June 26, 2011

Letter to the Editor of Time

[Musings of an elderly crank in the body of a 29-year-old.]

Re: “One Document, Under Siege”

To the Editor:

In his article, Richard Stengel writes, among other things, “The framers…gave us the idea…that South Dakota should have the same number of Senators as California, which is kind of crazy.”

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Posted by D. B. Bates at 9:07 AM | Print-Friendly | Comments (0) | Blog Posts, Become What You Are, Politics, Pop Culture Rants

June 27, 2011

It’s Coming…

The return of Cannon Corner.

But first, since I have nothing more interesting to talk about, here’s the unpolished first draft of the first chapter of Reader:

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Posted by D. B. Bates at 8:19 AM | Print-Friendly | Comments (0) | Blog Posts, Become What You Are