Wednesday, August 25

Monday, August 23

Jason Schwartzman's Career

Jason Schwartzman... what can I say. Actor (IMDB link), musician (Coconut Records), brother of Rooney lead singer Robert, relative of the Coppola family... This guy has a lot going for him and has a ton of talent. Here's an article outlining the past decade of his career...

Read It Here

Saturday, August 21

Friday, August 20

10 Incredible iPhone Photographs

Check 'Em Out

Man, I love taking pics on the iPhone, especially the iPhone 4. You can get some pretty awesome shots without trying super hard, especially when you're using apps to supplement your ocular ability. Below are my favorite apps to use. Got any to add to the list?


Plastic Bullet


PS Mobile

Wednesday, August 18

12 Coolest Bedroom Designs

There are some pretty rad interior designs on here. My faves are the second (though it's totally impractical, I say), the Fiji underwater resort, and the kids treehouse one.

Check 'Em Out

Monday, August 16

Live From Daryl's House

Oh, how I wish I would have known about the incredibleness of Hall & Oates sooner in my life! I knew OF them, but only had one song in my iTunes for several years: Jingle Bell Rock. Then when the (500) Days of Summer trailer dropped and I heard "You Make My Dreams", I had to look it up and find out who it was. (It ended up being our recessional song in our wedding, by the way)

But there were far more gems than I was enlightened to know about until this past February, when I finally gained a real appreciation for 80's music as a whole. All it took was a roadtrip to Dallas and a top notch playlist to convince me I had been missing out on some incredible music, especially from Hall & Oates.

If I may, I'll go on a rabbit trail off this rabbit trail I'm already on... If you haven't been introduced to the absolutely outstanding Hall & Oates tribute album made by The Bird and the Bee, stop reading, buy it, and start playing it as you finish reading this. Get it on iTunes here.

Okay, back on track to the real topic of this post - Live From Daryl's House. Daryl Hall has a website to share videos of studio jam sessions he's had with popular names like Chromeo, Smokey Robinson, Plain White T's, and KT Tunstall. In the couple I've seen, they play some H&O tunes as well as some of the guest's tunes and there are video snippets of conversations of that day sprinkled throughout. It's really pretty cool and looks like a blast. Click below to go directly to the Past Shows page and check one out!

Live From Daryl's House

Saturday, August 14

Toy Story 3 Easter Eggs

Here's a great list of some Easter Eggs found in Toy Story 3. There's some pretty interesting stuff on here! And here's one of my favorite screenshots in Toy Story 1, just as a bonus...

Check 'Em Out

Friday, August 13

Band of Brothers

I've always heard that the HBO mini-series Band of Brothers is a must-watch, but I've never taken the time to sit down and watch all 10 hours of it. I finally did a few months ago and was pretty blown away. It is extremely well done and pretty sobering, especially towards the end. It seems pretty realistic and gets pretty dang intense at times. I can't recommend it without stating the (hopefully) obvious that there's a good smattering of colorful language throughout, plus one skin scene (skip Chapter 1 of Part 9 after the initial pre-episode interviews), though it's otherwise incredible. It's a worthy investment and allows a lot more character development than a movie can because of the length.

Wednesday, August 11

My iPhone 4

After a month of using the iPhone 4, I've gotta say... this thing is pretty freaking awesome, even over the 3G S. Everything Apple said about it, especially being the biggest jump since the original iPhone, was true. It's always amazing for me to see how they pitch a product and tell you what you'll like / think about it and then that's exactly what I'm saying once I start using it. I was stoked out of my mind when I found out my eligibility had magically changed on release day, and then heard that Apple would have stock the next morning. I got to the mall about 6:30 AM and was gone by 8:15 AM, including a little AT&T account lookup hiccup. I went from saying that I was going to wait till next year to upgrade to having one the day after release and I am so glad I have one.

It's tough to determine what I love most about it. Honestly, one of the biggest things is the battery life, which is interesting cos they weren't touting it as a huge boost and it didn't sound like it would be that big of a jump from the 3G S. It took only a couple days for me to find out otherwise. It easily lasts a whole day with no trouble whatsoever, and I run it through the gauntlet every day. I get the feeling that they're stacking the deck in their favor when they talk about battery life estimates nowadays. I noticed it when they released the iPad and Walt Mossberg came back after using it and said it was actually better than they advertised. That's a different response than in years past where there was talk of "Is that 'real hours' or 'Apple hours'" because it wasn't always as great of battery life as they said it was. If they're purposefully doing it now, it's brilliant because no one can complain about it! It handles the extra drains of iOS 4 and multitasking extremely well.

I never realized the pixelation on the old screens and now it's hard to look at an older one that doesn't have the Retina display - it's really gorgeous. The cameras are awesome, though I don't find myself using the front-facing as much as I thought I would, maybe because I've gotten spoiled on the 5 MP camera on the back. The form factor is incredible and I can't bring myself to case this thing. Get insurance or a warranty and let it ride, I say. Also, I'm pretty impressed with the noise-cancelling mic on the top. I tested it out in a loud environment and my bro-in-law on the other end of the call couldn't even tell.

I couldn't do what I do in a week, especially at work, without an iPhone, plain and simple, and this update of iPhone especially has greatly improved my love for it!

Monday, August 9

Movie Reviews (July '10)

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

The Disclaimer
Just because I've watched a movie or enjoyed it doesn't mean that it's for everyone. I don't like or condone raunchy content in a movie and I use the websites, Kids In Mind and ScreenIt, to find out what kind of content is in a movie before I watch it. BUT. Everyone's tolerance level of how much content you'll put up with if the movie's worth watching varies. I'd prefer the movie to be clean, but if it's overall worth watching and isn't overly raunchy, I'm able to look past a lot of it. With that in mind, when I say a movie is good, I'm saying that in an overall sense, and I'm saying that from my perspective. I'm not endorsing it, nor am I saying that the content that is in it is appropriate for all ages.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

Close Encounters of the Third Kind
Boooring. Sorry, I know this a classic, but this did nothing for me.
2 of 5.

Toy Story 3
Need I write a review? If you didn't love this, you don't deserve a write-up as to why it was good. Agree with the masses! This was the best of the 3 and I loved it from start to finish.
20 of 5.

This Is It
This look into the rehearsals of Michael Jackson's huge concert that never happened was pretty awesome. The musicianship, creativity, and grandeur of the show would've been amazing and I woulda paid beaucoup bucks to see it. I highly recommend watching this! It's on Netflix Instant.
5 of 5.

YIKES, was this a freaking masterpiece! I saw it at a midnight showing and walked out with a brain full, even though I was fully awake the whole time. It's an awesome concept without coming across as a Matrix / James Bond mash-up, plus it's true to real life as far as how dreams work. This definitely requires 2 viewings (second time was awesome) to appreciate everything and if you have a chance to see it in IMAX, do it! The day this comes out on DVD, I'll be there to buy it and watch the special features.
20 of 5.

Gone With The Wind
The title says where my 4 hours of time went... I'm glad I watched this since it's always on the all-time best movies lists, but it wasn't a big deal, plus the length was way over the top. And the ending sucked. What a wench.
2 of 5.

Public Enemies
Ehh, no biggie. It was okay, but RottenTomatoes says it best in their synopsis: "Michael Mann's latest is a competent and technically impressive gangster flick with charismatic lead performances, but some may find the film lacks truly compelling drama." I didn't feel the tension or drama that I would've liked.
3 of 5.

Rear Window
I saw this when I was younger, but I don't remember it, so this was truly my first time to see it. Man, Hitchcock knew how to make movies! I loved it.
10 of 5.

Dial M for Murder
Ditto the above besides the fact that I hadn't watched this when I was younger...
5 of 5.

Lady in the Water
Somebody gave this to me as a gift so I have it in my DVD collection. It's been a long time since I've seen it and I remember loving it, even though everyone else was down on it. After this viewing I find myself in the latter crowd.
2 of 5.

Seeds (Free COTM Resources)

One of the things that has been taking up a lot of my time at work lately is Seeds, the free resource site of Church on the Move. Basically we're giving away everything that we create for all of our different services throughout the week. That includes editable art files, videos, drama scripts, stage plots with pictures and info (coming soon), and message notes (for select series). Everything is completely free and downloading is a piece of cake once you get an account. We also have a blog where some of our staff write about our processes and principles.

It's a pretty awesome site and it's been a lot of fun being involved from the ground floor on brainstorming its look, layout, and function. We keep making little tweaks along the way, especially with the blog, but things are in a pretty finished fashion. Until we get our automated upload feature going, I'm getting content in the right format to upload as well as writing the descriptions for the items and proofreading blog posts.

Check it out and let me know what you think!

She & Him :: Volume Two

The latest album from She & Him (the duo of Zooey Deschanel and M. Ward), dubbed Volume Two, has been my summer album this year. I don't remember where I got it from, but I've had it since March and probably just saw it on a New on iTunes email and grabbed it. The first song was about as far as I got and I never listened very intently to the rest until I read Relevant Magazine's Top 10 of '10 article. When I did, I found a ton about it that I loved. Not only is it summery, but it's a lot of fun and most every song is a gem. I highly recommend giving it a listen, especially "In the Sun", "Ridin' In My Car", "Gonna Get Along Without You Now", and "Lingering Still".

Monday, June 14

And... I'm Back!

Let's keep this short and sweet. No apology. No lamenting about killa stuff that didn't get posted. No over-ambitious promise of future content that will blow your mind and get posted on an insanely regular basis.

I got married. I moved. I started a new job. The holidays rolled around. Work got busy. Such on and such forth. That's why I haven't posted since September. So get off my back.

I've been tweeting / retweeting interesting stuff since ditching Watch. Listen. Share. so if you follow me on Twitter, you probably haven't missed me too much on here. I do find myself wanting to post more content, detail, or opinion though, so that's the reason for the blog.

To those who are new here: welcome! To those who aren't: welcome back! Feel free to browse the categories and previous posts in the sidebar to the right. And, should you like what see, you can subscribe via email at the top of the sidebar. It's painless and when I post, it'll send an email at the end of the day with all the posts right there in your mailbox. Cheers!

Movie Reviews (Sept. '09 - June '10)

I've seen about 90 movies since the beginning of September, so I'll just review a few here. Agree with a rating? Disagree? Drop a comment. I already know I stand pretty alone on my rating of Iron Man 2…

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

The Disclaimer
Just because I've watched a movie or enjoyed it doesn't mean that it's for everyone. I don't like or condone raunchy content in a movie and I use the websites, Kids In Mind and ScreenIt, to find out what kind of content is in a movie before I watch it. BUT. Everyone's tolerance level of how much content you'll put up with if the movie's worth watching varies. I'd prefer the movie to be clean, but if it's overall worth watching and isn't overly raunchy, I'm able to look past a lot of it. With that in mind, when I say a movie is good, I'm saying that in an overall sense, and I'm saying that from my perspective. I'm not endorsing it, nor am I saying that the content that is in it is appropriate for all ages.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

(500) Days of Summer
The trailer for this movie grabbed me instantly and it blew my mind as I had hoped! I could watch it over and over and over. A stud soundtrack, killer actors, and a great storytelling vehicle make it an all-time fave for me.
10 of 5.

Eagle vs. Shark
I finally saw this and was pleasantly surprised. I wasn't sure if it'd just be another movie that tried to be as hilar as Napoleon Dynamite but fell flat on its face, but it stood enough on its own for me. Some of the dialogue is priceless!
4.5 of 5.

The Informant
I saw this at a late showing so I honestly don't remember too much about it besides what I rated it. It was certainly different than I thought it was going to be and that wasn't necessarily a good thing, but it kept my attention. There are occasional little voiceovers from Matt Damon in between scenes and he has some laugh-out-loud lines.
4.5 of 5.

Fantastic Mr. Fox
Wes strikes again! There's a reason this guy is one of my favorite directors. The pace of the movie was fast by normal standards and compared to his usual slower style, it was blazing fast, but that's part of what I loved about it. Stop motion films always impress me and this also had the story, the humor, the Wes factor, and the fun that make it an all-time fave. Summer and I have already decided it'll be a classic for our family, especially around the Thanksgiving season!
10 of 5.

A Serious Man
I love the Coen brothers, but this was shockingly terrible, in my opinion. I didn't know it was like a modern re-telling of the story of Job, but even given that, it doesn't sway me into liking it. I wasn't in it from the very beginning and it just got irritating. I'm not one to walk out on movies, but this one got dangerously close to getting a walking.
1 of 5.

United 93
I'm way behind on seeing this and am glad I finally saw it. It leaves you super emotional… and ready to start a fight with some terrorists. Very well done!
5 of 5.

Man On Wire
This was a super intriguing documentary on the tightrope walker who successfully schemed to stretch a line and walk between the World Trade Center buildings. This guy has crazy skills and does some nauseatingly cool stuff on a tightrope.
5 of 5.

Food, Inc.
Pretty eye-opening documentary about a lot of things with our diet and the food industry. You always have to watch persuasive documentaries with a grain of salt cos they can easily just tell one side of the story, but I thought this was done well and it left me thinking differently about my eating. I haven't gone Vegan or anything like that, but overall, just have tried to be more conscious of what I eat and the quality of that food.
5 of 5.

I haven't had a gut-wrenching feeling in a while like I did with this movie. Sam Rockwell is pretty much the only face you see and Kevin Spacey voices the station computer, but it doesn't come off like a stripped down short film.
5 of 5.

Defending Your Life
I'd never heard of or seen an Albert Brooks movie, but upon recommendation, watched 3 of them and really enjoyed this one. He's been called the "West Coast Woody Allen" and I agree. The storyline of this movie is original and makes for some pretty funny moments.
4 of 5.

Iron Man 2
Ugh. In a nutshell: this sucked. Honestly, the first 5 minutes set the tone for me and it didn't get better after that. I can't really quantify what exactly I didn't like, but overall the character development felt rushed, there wasn't as much action as I expected, and Stark's attitude / dialogue felt cheesy not clever. The only redeeming factors were some amazing technology throughout and the fact that the whole pre-movie playlist was AC/DC.
1.5 of 5.

Sherlock Holmes
I felt like I was one of the last people to see this. It was just one of those that I knew was pretty good, but I just didn't make the time to watch it. I enjoyed it quite a bit! It was a fun adventure with some cool effects (slow-mo fight scene, anyone?)
4 of 5.

Moulin Rouge
Never seen this until just recently and was bugged that I had never experienced the musical goodness of this movie. I'm not a fan of musicals unless the music is dynamite and luckily this had both that and visual appeal. Some of the songs have been stuck in my head non-stop and that's okay with me.
5 of 5.

Art & Copy
Last, but certainly not least, this documentary on advertising was awesome! I enjoyed seeing pieces of great advertising from yesteryear and hearing from some of the A-list creatives of our time. It's on Netflix Instant so you have no excuse to not watch it, especially if you're in the creative world!
5 of 5.