Sunday, September 26, 2010

AllMoPs 6

All Manner of Plugs: Issue 6 (9.26.2010)
a weekly recommendations email

Written by J.S. Lewis

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Issue 6 is warm like a baked carcass... This week we go "all natural" in RANDOMONIA, throw some more monkey news your way, give THE FILM TOME REPORT a makeover, and much more! Let's get crackin'!

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Despite what you may think of the guy (if you even know of the guy), I freely admit that I enjoy listening to Rufus every now and then. His rendition of "Hallelujah," made famous by "Shrek," remains a personal favorite. My sisters and I first discovered this song years ago whilst on a Caribbean cruise. It played again and again on one of the few channels available on our room's TV. I found myself wanting to hear it each time... it was strangely alluring. It soon became one of those "earwig songs" that I've never been able to get rid of (mainly just the way he sings the word "California" itself). It's very memorable. You've been warned. Also, I dig the homage to the old Hollywood cinema made into a karaoke track which is cross-cut to a contemporary Rufus singing along. Dig it.

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A Jerusalem zoo is building a massive glass barrier to protect crowds from rock-throwing-monkeys. Sorry, no video. But here is the article, featuring lines like, "It's kind of embarrassing to be stoned by a chimp."

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Perhaps you are like me in that you've heard of the Venus Fly Trap and are quite aware of its activity, but haven't actually seen it in action... until now. Check out it and another bug-eating-plant.

You like the unbelievable? Check out the lyre bird. Watch it to the end to see/hear the best part. We truly live in an amazing world.

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Here's a fun little article I stumbled upon earlier this month: "5 just-plain-weird video games."

I was pleasantly surprised this week to find a free downloadable demo available on the Xbox Live Marketplace for"Arcania: Gothic 4." I have spent time with the first two in the series. These titles are in the same vein as "The Elder Scrolls" and "Fable" series: single-player action RPGs set in a fantasy realm. If you are anything like me, such things make you downright giddy. The good news is that "Gothic 4" is more of the same (and then some). The bad news is that on the Xbox 360 the menus and hud are small and unclear. This is a HUGE problem and if you're someone who can't get past such annoyances, it makes the game virtually unplayable. I believe the problem lies in some sort of porting from the PC version, which is the medium these games are meant to played upon. PC gamers sit up close and enjoy a richer resolution, gaming on a console is a different experience altogether. The game is said to be coming out next month (October 12th), I am afraid that means it will ship with the problems I just lamented. We'll see...

"Halo: Reach" continues to blow my mind. I'm currently working on one of the greatest CTF maps man will ever play with Forge.

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*Arguably the highlight of many of these AllMoPs, The Film Tome Report is also my favorite part. I spend the most time preparing this section and even post it a second time on my Film Tome blog each week. You'll notice I will be splitting this tree into branches of its own. This time just the one, but look forward next week for new additions!

*Film trailers: I love them. I hate them. (I have an unwritten article long due entitled "The Trouble with Trailers" that will explain everything.) As part of my unhealthy relationship with the darn things, I will continue to view them and pass them along. After all, it is my duty. Imagine me riding through the fields of film, tossing my lasso around the ones that look promising, and bringing them here for you. On occasion I'll see one that looks anything but promising (ridiculous, controversial, maybe downright bizarre) and I'll bring it along too just for that reason.

There is now a new trailer for "Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 1 (HP7)." It is a crime of the highest kind that they are splitting this into two films. Now Warner Bros. and friends will make twice the amount of money with a single adaptation. They are greedy geniuses. Nonetheless, I (and every other "Harry Pothead") are ecstatic and will be at the nearest theater on November 11, 2010 and then again in 2011. We have no other choice.

"Gnomeo & Juliet." This is one of the worst names I've ever heard. Perhaps with the success of the "Toy Story" franchise another studio thought it'd be grand to try their hand at making the inanimate animated. Only this time featuring the secret lives of lawn gnomes (and an occasional "toy" as the trailer reveals). It doesn't look horrible, in fact, the animation seems pretty solid, check out the humans shown early on to see some amazing renderings. Like what you see? Well, you won't be able to see it all till February folks!

Last year we got "The Christmas Story." At that time 3D was an exciting concept, these days it is refreshing to see a film release without 3D. Crazy how much things can change eh? Now, this holiday season we'll get another Christmas classic in all three dimensions: "The Nutcracker".

Here's yet another animated film that after watching I only thought, "Okay...": "The Lion of Judah."

And now for something completely different (WARNING: This trailer contains violent and sensual content.): "Zenith."Perhaps the most interesting thing we know about the film is that the director is Anonymous...

Ahh... here is "Catfish." This trailer came out a while back, I saw it then, but failed to report. After watching the ultra-intriguing trailer again, I've decided to give it a plug. It's already showing is select theaters... look for it on Redbox later this year.

Finally, if you are going to watch one trailer this week, watch this one! (My apologies if you've been clicking the links along the way, not that there's anything wrong with that, but this one is by far the cream of the crop.) "The King's Speech" chronicles a chapter from the life of King George VI during which he suffered with a stutter. It has a star-studded cast with the likes of Colin Firth, Helena Bonham Carter, Guy Pearce, Michael Gambon, and Geoffrey Rush. This looks impeccable! Tom Hooper directs.

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Al-righty! If you have any comments, questions, requests, complaints or threats please let your voice be heard If you wish to be removed from the AllMoPs send-list, let me know. If you wish to add someone, let me know. Enjoy the rest of the September and thanks for plugging in!

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