Against the Grain

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Archive for the ‘entertainment’ Category

My review of The Dark Night: A / 9.6

Posted by Patrick on 23 Jul 2008

As always with my reviews, I first need to say that I will probably dive into some spoiler territory with this review, so please don’t bother to read this entire post if you don’t want to encounter any spoiler material, even if I include it accidentally without forewarning. If you don’t want to read this post, you should know that:

* I ultimately rate this movie an A on the education scale
* a 9.6 on the 10-point Richter scale
* There is a lion’s share of violence (weapon-based violence) in this movie. If you’re one of those parents who wants to shield your kids from this kind of stuff, leave them at home.

and with that, if you don’t want to encounter any spoilers you may safely stop reading this article.

If you’re expecting something that includes a funny scene just because it has the Joker, you’re misguided on this movie. If you’re expecting a continuation of Nicholson’s Joker character, you’re also a fair bit off center with where this movie goes. It is a very, VERY knife-edge serious movie right from the opening scene, and it does not let up in the least until the credits roll.

Now, on to the review. First and foremost, I loved this movie. I thought it was beautifully executed in nearly every way. Even the color timings and the vividness of the scenery, despite being mostly filmed in Chicago, was great. I think Chicago was the perfect setting for this movie – it’s gritty, urban, and has that aura that naturally makes it great for this kind of movie. I should say, it is the best Gotham City that we have seen on the screen (in my opinion).

***SPOILER ALERT*** I may bring up some things that happen in the movie. If you want to avoid that possibility, you probably don’t need to click. No refunds.

Read the rest of this entry »

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Posted in entertainment, movies, News Items, opinion | Tagged: , , , , , , | 1 Comment »

BCS Playoffs – 2007 Matchups

Posted by Patrick on 13 Dec 2007

Let’s assume for a minute that the NCAA’s FBS, that would be the organization formerly known as Division 1-A, were to institute a playoff system with this years teams.  And just for laughs let’s say it’s a 16-team tournament even though the top 10 teams are the only “BCS bowl” team under the current hokey-ass, lamefied system.  Using that bracket as a basis (go to ESPN if you can’t visualize a 16-team bracket), let’s look at what the matchups would be and which one would be the “best”.  Also, yell loudly when you spot a “bad” game in any round.

First Round:
1 Ohio State
vs 16 Tennessee
8 Kansas vs 9 West Virginia

5 Georgia vs 12 Florida
4 Oklahoma vs 13 Illinois (I’m yelling loudly)

3 Virginia Tech vs 14 Boston College
6 Missouri vs 11 Arizona State

7 USC vs 10 Hawaii
2 LSU vs 15 Clemson

The best matchup in this round, if you ask me, is USC vs Hawaii.  I’m tempted to say it’s UGA versus Florida in a rematch of the annual world’s largest cocktail party, but honestly Florida should be scared of UGA right now.  So no, USC vs Hawaii.  We’re talking about Petey Carroll and his pretty boy JD Bootylicious with all that offense taking on Juniper Jones and Colt 45 Brennan and all their offense.  Neither team really does well on defense – yeah, ok USC at least fields 11 capable athletes, but let’s face it that their defense is the reason they’re not in the top 3.

Best chance for an upset:  Arizona State over Missouri in my book.  Though it’s not really an upset, I think WV would take out Kansas as well.  My picks are in bold.

Second Round:
1
Ohio State vs 9 West Virginia
5 Georgia vs 4
Oklahoma
3 Virginia Tech vs 11
Arizona State
7 USC vs 2 LSU

The best game in this round, and probably the best matchup you are going to get out of these teams, is Georgia vs Oklahoma.  Face facts folks, at the end of the 2007 season, Oklahoma is scary good – Georgia is omfg scary good.  Let’s also realize that Georgia was 1 triple overtime Tennessee game versus Kentucky away from being in the SEC title game against LSU, whom they would have taken behind the woodshed and been ranked #1 or #2 at the end of the season – frankly I think they are the hottest team in college football right now – maybe they weren’t for the whole season, but for right now, they are executing with the most horsepower.  But what makes this matchup so great is that Oklahoma is the true #2 team in my opinion.  OU got lots of dap for winning the Big 12 with pollsters, but found themselves at #4 regardless.  Sadly, only one team can move forward, and I’m picking Georgia in a close, physical battle.

Best upset chance: West Virginia destroys Ohio State in a laugher.

Semifinals:
9
West Virginia vs 5 Georgia
3 Virginia Tech vs 2
LSU

I just raved about UGA, so I’ll talk about why VT will beat LSU.  It’s because of Les Miles and his general inability to manage a game; in this match he’s going to do something boneheaded and it’s going to cost his hard-working team the game.  Not to discredit VT, because they are going to put points on the board vs LSU’s mediocre secondary and “hey he breathed on me so throw a flag” mentality.  This team may be spouting about “we were only 2x 3OT losses away from being undefeated”, but at that point, a loss is a loss – if you’re a good enough team, win the game in four quarters and keep your panties on your waist whining about triple overtime.  if your defense could hold a goal line, they wouldn’t have lost either game anyway.  I’ve got VT over LSU somewhere in the 31-20 range.

Championship Game:
5 Georgia vs 3
Virginia Tech

Yes, so it comes down to this for all the hypothetical marbles you want to throw into the circle.  As I already said, Georgia is omfg scary good right now.  Like cakerockstheparty said in such eloquent words, the dawgs are “out for blood”, Turnbull A.C.’s be damned.  I’ve got them taking this tournament against VT in a game somewhere around 27-23 – a close one.

So, if you’re a Georgia fan, let me hear some love! 

Will college football ever see a playoff? Yes.  Will we be old, crotchety men shaking our canes at the TV by then? Maybe.

Posted in educational, entertainment, football, humor, NCAA, News Items, omfg, opinion, sports, what would happen if... | 3 Comments »

Taking Bets on Hayden’s Closet Status

Posted by Patrick on 10 Dec 2007

We all read the interview or saw the video online where Hayden Panettiere is quoted as saying that she’d love to have an affair with Angelina Jolie, among other hotties with whom many men also want to have an affair.  She’s saying that she’s ok with the media portraying her as a lesbian candidate but didn’t come out and make a statement in either direction about what her reality is.

Before I get down this path, I want to say first that I tolerate all people and their lifestyles as readers of this blog; I don’t bash many types of people simply because of who they are – where I draw my line is when one group of people aims to infringe on the rights of others or the rights of unsuspecting bystanders.  In this case, that is – in the context of this post, if the subject is homosexuality or bisexuality, that’s fine with me.  I have several friends who are one or the other, as many of us do, and I accept people who lead this lifestyle alongside my peers.  For the record, I have voted in favor of gay rights every time I’ve voted on an issue because I believe the old Christian principles, while valuable and influential to a large audience in the US, infringe on the rights of those who may even practice another religion.

Sorry for the diatribe; I want to check my guns at the gate before proceeding.

So, let’s set some odds on Hayden’s quoted relationship candidates and the chances that the hookup will ever happen. I’ll open with these:

Hayden and Angelina:  75:1
Hayden and Charlize:  50:1
Hayden and Jessica Alba:  200:1
Hayden and Kate Beckinsdale:  100:1

Hayden and any currently-declared celebrity B/L:   15:1

At least 1 year passing with no announced hookups:  7:4

What would I pay to see?  How about an episode of Heroes where Hayden and Kristen Bell get steamy; yep that would hold my attention.

Posted in culture, entertainment, heroes, hotties, opinion, TV, women | Tagged: , , , | 3 Comments »