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Showing posts from January, 2008

An Oscar Nod for Juno??

I'm outraged at this. If you haven't already, please check out my Juno movie review, entitled Don't See Juno (The Libra, 12/28/07).

I'm willing to go on the record, right now, and say that if Juno wins an Oscar for any reason, I will renounce The Academy. What exactly does that entail? It means I will never give credence to any of its decisions again, or hold an "Oscar" or an "Oscar nomination" in any type of esteem. In fact, I may begin to look at it as a detriment. This I promise you, my friends.

I leave you with a great William Goldman quote [Paraphrased]: "Every year at Oscar time, the entire industry gathers to lament the fact that it has been the single worst year in Hollywod."

There Will Be Blood...And Lots of Oil

Movie Review: There Will Be Blood

By: Grant Catton


In order to write a real REVIEW of this movie, I've had to distance myself from the simple fact that I loved it. It's much easier to write a review when you hate a movie, or can spot its flaws, or even believe it has a lot of flaws. In the case of There Will Be Blood, however, it's hard for me to do that, because even eight hours after stepping out of the theater, I'm still watching the movie in my mind. Suffice it to say (and then the emotional part of this review will be over), if the film is still playing by the time you read this blog, do yourself a favor and go see it.

Synopsis (With Spoilers)

In this film, Daniel Day Lewis stars as a self-described "oil man" at the turn of the 20th century, and the film centers almost solely on him and his methodical rise to wealth as a business man, which is accompanied by the gradual loss of his soul.

The film opens in 1898 when Lewis's character, called Daniel Plainvi…

This Just In: Our Economy Is Going Down The Toilet

On Reuters.com right now there is an article that says President Bush is putting together a $150 billion "rescue plan" to stimulate the economy. The plan will be composed of tax cuts for families, help for the unemployed, and a 50% tax break on new investments by businesses.

If you wanted a sign that our economy is in trouble, you just got it.

When the current free-market, non-interventionist administration decides to arrange a $150 billion life line to the economy, you know they're afraid. You need not necessarily be afraid, assuming you've got a job, and/or some sort of an education, and/or some money in the bank, but it's quite obvious the government recognizes that this country could be in a world of hurt very soon if we don't figure a way out of this.

And it's all because for six years money was cheap and everybody was giving it away for free. Well, eventually The Bank had to start asking for some of it back, and when Mr. & Mrs. Subprime borrowers d…

January...it's the new April!

Or: Climate change scares the methane out of me...

I awoke this morning to another beautiful, balmy, 55 degree January morning and I suddenly realized that "Winter" as I once knew it is dead. It's not just a "warm-snap," or a freaky patch of weather. Its been like this for the past week. A day or two prior to this warm period the weather was bone-chilling, skin-biting cold. This happens EVERY year now: we have several periods of one to three weeks where the weather is just unseasonably warm, Springtime warm. Its been like that for at least the past four winters I've been in NYC. That's just the way it is now, much like the way Autumn has almost completely disappeared.

Call me old fashioned, call me alarmist, call me "Chicken Little," but I don't ever remember it being like this in the winter. I seem to remember a time when, for spans of several weeks, even whole seasons, I had a general idea of the kind of weather I could expect. Yeah, it mi…

Just some mild political irony from the day's news...

Bush Visits the Middle East...For the First Time.

So President Bush was in Israel today trying to promote peace negotiations in the Middle East. If that's not irony, then they need to change the definition of the word. This is the man who almost five years ago started a WAR there...now, in the last year of his presidency he's going there, for the first time, mind you, to promote peace in the one slice of the Middle East where there hasn't been peace in 40 years.

Are we expected to believe he actually cares about this? Because it sounds to me like a desperate effort to leave a legacy involving something other than the Iraq war, or at least give a few good sound-bytes and photos glad-handing with world leaders. In the newspapers he was quoted saying the region has an "historic chance" for peace....wrong. The region always has the chance for peace, it's just that he has a "last chance" to force some kind of artificial progress and claim he did something…

Alright, enough with this "Caucus" business...

I'm fed up with the Iowa Caucus system and the fact that basically two states, Iowa and New Hampshire, get to decide who the Democratic and Republican nominees are going to be. How did it get to this point? Didn't the primaries used to be in February and March? Going even further back, weren't they held in the spring and summer of the ELECTION YEAR? It was only about 30-35 years ago that the Democratic and Republican nominations were actually still up for grabs by the time the respective parties held their nominating conventions in the late summer! Nominating conventions actually used to NOMINATE someone, rather than just confirm what everyone in the nation now knows since Feb. 5. This has become a joke, and I hope this whole system disappears in my lifetime.

Just to rip on the Iowa Caucus for a moment; I won't tell you the details of how it works, but the Iowa Caucus sounds to me like a Sixth Grade Civics expiriment. They have little groups that get together and debate…

An Un-Inspiring Garnacha

Tapena
Garnacha (Grenache)
Castilla, Spain
2005

This 100% Garnacha--or Grenache, as the French say--cost about $7.99 at the wine shop. In a word, it was uninspiring; with nothing either very pleasing or very displeasing about it.

The wine has very little aroma to it and starts off very soft on the palate, so soft and clear, in fact, that it almost tastes like water for a moment. In that sense, the wine starts off a bit disappointing, but doesn' t offer much to make up for it later. There are some decently strong notes of cherry and other berry fruit, but they do not linger long on the tongue or in the nose. The most notable feature of this wine is its satisfying dryness which lingers in the back of the throat.

This wine would go well with just about any food, precisely because it is so innocuous. This could also easily be drunk without food, also because it is so unobtrusive. However, since there is not much to grab on to here, it may be a bit too boring even for that.

The bottle was ope…