Good … our first catch of the day.
The semester is dead and buried. I am enjoying the two whole weeks I get off until my summer class begins. Energy & Ethics, I believe it is called. It represents the fulfillment of my last annoying “Q” requirement. To clarify, Stockton defines certain courses with modifiers such as “W” for a writing-intensive course or “A” for courses focused on the arts. There are requirements for all students to take a certain number of courses with these modifiers. “Q” courses are described as focusing on “quantitative thinking.” I still need a Q2, I also still need a course from the GIS program, and Energy & Ethics happens to be both. Convenient.
Last night I watched Grizzly Man. There are some very disturbing parts to this film. What makes it so fascinating is the portrait of Timothy Treadwell that emerges from the footage. He is clearly someone who is fighting a battle with himself and his grip on reality. Footage that was clearly never intended to be seen by anyone else reveals some of the most intensely private moments ever seen. In the wild environment Treadwell’s humanity shows itself at its most raw, but this raw humanity is not the savage, near-animal cowboy persona he wants it to be. Rather, he is simply a sad man, one who desperately wanted to be accepted and to be more than what he was. Ultimately, Treadwell destroys himself. The real tragedy is not in his death, but that of the woman who was with him. I highly recommend checking this one out, but be prepared to hear some rather graphic descriptions of the bear attack. You never hear the audio of Timothy’s death, but between seeing director Werner Herzog’s face as he listens to it and the coroner’s description of what he heard on the tape, you’ll feel like you did.
Alright, time to geek out. The final Superman Returns trailer went up this week. This thing gives me goose-bumps. Well, except for the part where it becomes clear that Kate Bosworth is going to completely suck in this movie. I don’t mean to sound like the typical internet movie nerd here, making broad assumptions about a film based on its trailer, but seriously, she just comes off poorly in this thing. This is disappointing, since there are only three characters that really matter when making a Superman movie and she plays one of them. Otherwise, the movie looks like so much fun. Brandon Routh seems like he’ll be perfectly fine as the Man of Steel. Lex Luthor . . . Kevin Spacey. Frankly, what more need be said about that? Actually, I will point out that a few months ago Ian and I were having a late-night diner conversation about this movie after poker and he mentioned he thought Spacey should “play it like Gene Hackman.” I think the trailer hints that may be just what he did. Awesome.
In a triumphant victory for fanboys everywhere, Lucasfilm announced yesterday that this fall the Star Wars dvds would be re-released with a second disc on which will be the original, unaltered versions of the films. When the dvds came out in late 2004, I held out hope that something like this would happen eventually and skipped on the purchase. Anyone who knows me surely realizes how hard this decision was. Well, it paid off. If I may get a little pretentious here for a second (You weren’t being pretentious before?), this isn’t just about me wanting to hold on to a piece of my childhood, although that certainly is a part of it. As someone who is mildly obsessed with film, I found Lucas’s insistence that his “Special Editions” were the official versions of the films and that the original cuts should therefore never be made available again to be downright offensive. Regardless of whatever leaps in special effects have been made since then, the original Star Wars trilogy represents a very important moment in the history of American cinema. They remain arguably the most ground-breaking effects films in history, the only real competition being the Lord of the Rings films and the 1933 King Kong. They were also quite influential on the myriad fantasy and sci-fi films released throughout the 1980s.
Besides — no Ewok song? Greedo shooting first?! Fuck that.
I was planning on writing some sort of examination of the differences between console and PC gaming from the perspective of someone going through the transition from focusing on the former to the latter, but it’s going to have to wait; I’m done for now. Look for it soon-ish.