graculus: (Default)
Finally got around to see Spider-Man: Homecoming yesterday - my cinema-going tends to be Mondays and Tuesdays, because the local cinema has a money-off scheme those days, even if it means I often end up in almost-empty screens in the middle of the day. Desperately hoping at the moment that Atomic Blonde is still going to be showing when I get back, as it opens this weekend and I'm going away.

Anyway, back to your friendly neighbourhood wallcrawler. I'd gone into this movie knowing that it wasn't yet another origin story (yay for that, because who doesn't know how Spider-Man got his powers by now?) but also concerned at the amount of RDJ the posters and trailers suggested. Anyway, in general terms I enjoyed it and it just about managed not to be an Iron Man movie instead, but it was close at times.

One of the things I really liked was that the main villain character was wearing an outfit that was clearly a reference to the costume he wears in the comics I remember reading when I was a teenager. Is it ironic that Michael Keaton has gone from being Batman to a supervillain and actually does the latter much more convincingly? Not that Batman isn't mostly just one or two steps away from that anyway, I guess...

We also almost got high school aged actors playing high school students - this is Hollywood high school, so they were 20-21 (except for one actress who's 27 and pretty much looks it imho). I always think it's funny because, through the fencing club, I spend a bit of time with teenage lads in particular and the vast majority do not look anything like Hollywood high school.

I think it also makes it comfortably into my MCU top 5 (pending, of course, the arrival of Black Panther next year):

1. Captain America: Winter Soldier
2. Iron Man 3
3. Captain America: The First Avenger
4. Spider-Man: Homecoming
5. Thor

So, how about you folks? Anyone else seen it? What's your MCU top 5?
graculus: (Default)
Apologies to the folks who find my recent foray into the world of fitness etc. of zero interest - in recognition of that, I've put the next part of my post behind a cut so you can skip onto me whittering about other things instead!

blah, blah, rowing machines and fencing... )

In other news, well there's not a whole bunch to say. I'm still teaching two classes, though I've now been given a student teacher for a few weeks so she can see what life is like in adult education - she came today and I asked my learners to talk about their course and they immediately told her what a good teacher I was, which made me laugh a lot. I've been given an idea of what I'll be teaching from September and it's pretty much the same, unexpected funding cuts permitting!

I'm also reading a lot (no surprises there) and went to see Captain America: Civil War on Friday when it opened in the UK. It will probably come as no surprise to anyone who knows me that I loved it, though I still prefer the Russos' previous movie. Without spoiling anyone, since I know it's only opening elsewhere this week, I'd say that it probably tries to do too much but still manages most of it. Also Chris Evans' eyelash game is very strong. ;)
graculus: (Default)
I think the most annoying thing about job-hunting is that you're sending stuff out into the void - apparently most would-be employers and recruitment agencies find it completely beyond them to send a brief 'get lost, please stop sending us your CV' email in the event they don't want to interview you.

Anyway, my two previously-planned interviews went like this - first one got cancelled 24 hours beforehand and postponed to an as-yet-undisclosed future date and the second went well (feedback was far better than I anticipated, to be perfectly honest) but I didn't have quite the experience they were looking for. I was up front with them to say that I wasn't sure either whether it was quite what I was looking for, but felt going for the interview was a good idea anyway, just to get in practice.

Two more interviews lined up this week - first is for a library job much like the one I've just left, but better hours and also part-time so I can fit other stuff around it, while the second is also part-time but for an actual tutoring job, which would be a good foot in the door for this line of work. So, we'll see what happens...

In other news, I have actually managed to make myself start writing again and am about 600 words into my [community profile] picfor1000 story, which is due next week so I thought I'd better get my skates on. I haven't defaulted so far on this challenge and don't intend to start now! As for other stuff, I need to get back to the two WiP I have lurking over on AO3 and see if I can resuscitate them.

I'm not doing so well on my movies for the year either, as after seeing American Hustle locally, I had to go into town to see Inside Llewyn Davis so the cost of parking negated any discount I would otherwise receive. And then, when I wanted to see Her, it's again only showing at the fancy cinema in town but in the expensive screen until this weekend so I need to get over there tomorrow night. Next on my list was Only Lovers Left Alive and this particular chain hasn't picked that up at all, so that'll be arthouse cinema time instead. Very inconsiderate of them.

The next one on my list is Grand Budapest Hotel, which ought to be showing locally as they keep showing the trailer but who can say? I expect to have similar difficulties with getting to see Under the Skin as well. Then I think it'll be time for Captain America 2: Winter Soldier so I really don't expect any problems seeing that as often as I find I need to... ;)
graculus: (sarcasm)
First off, still no sign of the missing ferret - not good but not particularly surprising. I was asked by the guys who found the second one if they would stick together or come if I called and neither apply. No, ferrets are pretty dumb in many ways so the other one could be anywhere. Anyway the missing posters are still up in the area, I've spoken with every vet in the city and even emailed the folks who remove roadkill so I don't see what more I can do...

In work news, I've now been off for almost 6 weeks after my GP signed me off due to stress a month ago. I'm definitely feeling better but still not 100%, with a planned return to work next Wednesday in a non-management job at another office, which basically means 6 days there (because of Christmas) then I'm off again on annual leave. Never having to deal with my current manager ever again (fingers crossed) is looking extremely like a very near prospect.

One of the things the whole work scenario did was squash any creative urges and pretty much grind them underfoot. Which is why the last thing I posted fanfic-wise was April, which should probably have been a sign if I'd been anywhere near seeing it. Anyway, I'm tentatively thinking about stuff again and have signed up for [livejournal.com profile] picfor1000 (now in it's 11th year, can you believe it?) and am actually sort of looking at other challenges/fests in the thought that having a deadline might help me push myself into actually creating something again. Anyone else experienced this, if so then any pointers/suggestions would be much appreciated!

No signs of a new fandom (thank the elder gods) despite/because of my time on Tumblr which I am still enjoying immensely in all its superficial idish glory. :)

Finally, I realised today that I've only been to the cinema once this year (Avengers, natch!). 2013 looks like being different, though, given that May sees the release of Star Trek and Iron Man 3 and July gives us Pacific Rim. Which looks awesome in the way only giant robots, Idris Elba and Rinko Kikuchi could be. Here's the trailer if you're still not convinced: )
graculus: (sarcasm)
A note to UK channel Five:

Dear Five,

How have the general viewing public offended you sufficiently to warrant Adam Sandler movie marathons for the next three Sunday evenings?

No love,
Me
graculus: (sarcasm)
In January, I'm summoned off for my official induction (hey, only 3 months in post) and I understand that this involves a visit from a senior manager, the same one that sent a perfectly fatuous message around on Christmas Eve with the view that it be circulated to all staff.

You always expect something designed to rally the troops, usually with a tone of 'thanks for all your hard work, now keep it up!'. This one, however, took the proverbial biscuit as it was just 'make sure you have everything arranged for when you're off', not even leavened by enough good wishes for politeness sake. Since I'm obliged to do management training too next year, I can only hope to emulate such people skills with significant application, I'm sure!

I just deleted it, rather than passing it on, so I expect that's immediately a point against my chances of ever reaching such dizzying heights...

In other news, went to see Sherlock Holmes yesterday Spoilers )
graculus: (sarcasm)
Any UK peeps reading this who would like a giftcard for 3 months free membership of LoveFilm, please leave your name & address in a comment and it's yours.

There are, naturally, catches as you have to have a credit or debit card to sign up and if you don't cancel and also return all the discs you have, you'll get charged. Likewise, you can't be either an existing subscriber or someone who has previously had a trial membership. The offer expires at the end of May 2009, so you don't have to use them immediately...

Still interested? I have two to pass on one left, so the first commenters get them, after which I'll edit this post.
graculus: (sarcasm)
Movie meme, gakked from all sorts of folks...

In which I prove I am a black & white film-loving geek... )

Yep, I have definitely seen at least 257/Empire's top 500 movies, and that's without looking up the plots of some of the others I'm not sure about. No, I don't get out much, why do you ask? ;)
graculus: (geek love)
One of the lawyers I deal with a lot seems to have lost the plot a little, to the point where I had to ask her boss if she could get A to calm the hell down. She's always been a bit panicky, with a tendency towards jumpy emails and stalkery telephone calls till you tell her to leave you alone to do what it is she's asking about, but recently it's escalated to:

1. Problem arises
2. A is told we cannot immediately sort out the problem
3. A panics and emails everyone and their dog about the problem
4. Things spiral out of control because senior managers get involved
5. I get involved, one way or another
6. Things get sorted, one way or another
7. Senior managers continue to kvetch because they got involved
8. A eventually calms down about this but then finds something else

If this wasn't just an escalation of her previous behaviour, I'd have to call it passive-aggressive, but what it definitely turns out to be is counterproductive. One case could have been stopped at stage 2 if A had just spoken with the person who was trying to sort out the problem (who eventually did so), since the rest of the stages really weren't necessary...

But instead of thinking about this tonight, I (re)watched one of my favourite films, though I'm trying to figure out now how many times I've seen it. The film in question being Zoolander, in case you were wondering. I must be well into the double figures now, though the title for most-watched movie is probably still held by Withnail and I - I had the video, wore it out and then had to buy the dvd. I watch that movie at least once or twice a year, along with Galaxy Quest and a couple of John Cusack movies (Grosse Pointe Blank and High Fidelity).

There are also movies I can't help but watch if they turn up on tv, though owning a Preston Sturges boxset reduced that a little where his movies are concerned. I wouldn't like to think how many times I've seen Singing in the Rain, The Philadelphia Story (or indeed High Society, though I prefer the original) or some of the Frank Capra movies. I tend to do quite well in those '100 classic movies' memes that roll around every so often.

So, esteemed readers, what movies have you worn out? Is there, like with mine, a rough theme to them or are there particular movies you watch for particular reasons?
graculus: (UNCLE)
Thanks to the lovely [livejournal.com profile] obelix who I never seem to get to see around online at the moment, I came home from my holidays clutching a set of the Man from UNCLE boxset, the one with all the episodes in, which I smuggled through customs and am now enjoying. I've watched all of season 1, including the bits in the colour version of the pilot where IK is very decorative and am now at 'The Discotheque Affair' in technicolour season 2. Much love for the boys, who really are so very married. The extras are cute too. And then when I'm done with all those episodes, I have the whole run of Wild Wild West to watch. :)

In other news, am I the only one who was somewhat underwhelmed by The Golden Compass? Yes, I know I'm behind the times, but I rented it the other day and was very much left thinking 'is that it?'. It just seemed to stop as it was really getting going. I'm left wondering if the books (though I haven't read them, so it's just speculation...) would probably have made a better miniseries, though of course they couldn't have afforded the same SFX budget. Any thoughts from the folks who have read them?
graculus: (Charlie - WTF?)
I'm staying in a nice hotel in Chinatown (that occupies the top floors of a decidedly unpreposessing shopping centre) with wireless (yes, that was a priority, why do you ask?) but dudes, the muzak in the lobby. Cheesy instrumental versions of 'Wooden Heart' and now 'Summer Holiday'? Dudes!

It was bloody cold yesterday and, in honour of Queen Victoria's birthday, many things were shut. Looking out of the window first thing was quite odd, because it was like one of those post-apocalyptic movies where the streets are empty other than for the newspaper blowing along. Given that it was a holiday, I decided it would be a good idea to avoid the Royal Ontario Museum so that's my destination this morning. I'm also hoping to hit the Museum of Inuit Art as well, though that'll depend on my post-ROM attitude.

Yesterday concluded with a nice nap in the afternoon (hey, I had to warm up!) and then an early evening showing of The Forbidden Kingdom - the original plan was Prince Caspian but then I saw what else was showing and I know it doesn't even have a UK release date yet! Oh, much Jet Li love! Spoilers ) Why yes, I probably will be buying the dvd... :)
graculus: (geek love)
Managed to get myself organised enough to go and see Iron Man this morning and now understand the post-credits 'omg, that is so cool!' I saw on my friendslist earlier in the week. Now if only Gwyneth Paltrow could learn to act...

And also there is packing. Meh. ;)
graculus: (Charlie - WTF?)
...when you're wandering through IMdB.

Steven Moffat (Jekyll, The Empty Child/The Doctor Dances, Blink, various upcoming eps of Dr Who) is writing a screenplay for a new Tintin movie! Ahahahaha!
graculus: (geek love)
Gakked from [livejournal.com profile] klo_the_hobbit:
1. Pick 15 of your favorite movies.
2. Go to IMDb and find a quote from each movie.
3. Post them here for everyone to guess.
4. Strike it out when someone guesses correctly, and put who guessed it and the movie.
5. NO GOOGLING/using IMDb search or other search functions.


1. "There's a lot to be said for making people laugh. Did you know that that's all some people have? It isn't much, but it's better than nothing in this cockeyed caravan." Sullivan's Travels - guessed by [livejournal.com profile] alyburns

2. "My art has been commended as being strongly vaginal which bothers some men. The word itself makes some men uncomfortable. Vagina." The Big Lebowski - guessed by [livejournal.com profile] nausica2

3. "My, my, my! Such a lot of guns around town and so few brains!" The Big Sleep - guessed by [livejournal.com profile] sassywitch

4. "Sting would be another person who's a hero. The music he's created over the years, I don't really listen to it, but the fact that he's making it, I respect that." Zoolander - guessed by [livejournal.com profile] sassywitch

5. "Ah, there's [character name]. She walks in beauty, like the night... Only she's cycling and it's daytime." A Matter of Life and Death - guessed by [livejournal.com profile] julia_justina

6. "OK, so we got a trooper pulls someone over, we got a shooting, these folks drive by, there's a high-speed pursuit, ends here and then this execution-type deal." Fargo - guessed by [livejournal.com profile] nausica2

7. "So you're a homosexual hopelessly in love with [character name], that's no reason the two of us can't be married." Down With Love - guessed by [livejournal.com profile] sassywitch

8. "This place has become impossible. Nothing to eat, freezing cold and now a madman on the prowl outside with eels." Withnail and I - guessed by [livejournal.com profile] klo_the_hobbit

9. "Well, I wouldn't argue that it wasn't a no holds barred, adrenaline fueled thrill ride. But, there is no way you can perpetrate that amount of carnage and mayhem and not incur a considerable amount of paperwork." Hot Fuzz - guessed by [livejournal.com profile] temaris

10. "I'm talking about the gas chamber, and you haven't even asked me what this is about. You've got a big "Guilty" sign around your neck." LA Confidential - guessed by [livejournal.com profile] alyburns

11. "How are you fixed for fuel? Are you still using fossil fuels, or have you discovered crystallic fusion?" Toy Story - guessed by [livejournal.com profile] temaris

12. "Liking both Marvin Gaye and Art Garfunkel is like supporting both the Israelis and the Palestinians." High Fidelity - guessed by [livejournal.com profile] alyburns

13. "So after all this time in your service, I must simply content myself to form part of this belligerent expedition, hurry past wonders, bent on destruction. I say nothing of the corruption of power..." Master and Commander - guessed by [livejournal.com profile] kageygirl

14. "If there's trouble, all us freaks have is each other." Hellboy - guessed by [livejournal.com profile] siluria

15. "You've got to remember that these are just simple farmers. These are people of the land. The common clay of the new West. You know... morons." Blazing Saddles - guessed by [livejournal.com profile] kageygirl
graculus: (Charlie - WTF?)
Buying a new curtain rail in Wilko's (for anyone who's outside the UK, Wilko's is the Store That Sells Everything, Guaranteed), I was shocked, nay horrified to see creme eggs and such like on sale! WTF, people!

Speaking of stores (hey, nice segue...) I was watching Hot Fuzz again today - I blame Yuletide - and wondering whether people not-in-the-UK realise that not only is the supermarket they shoot up a real supermarket, Somerfield is actually a real supermarket chain?
graculus: (oh please)
Finally got around to seeing Hot Fuzz this afternoon and it was very entertaining. Possibly more entertaining if you're into action movies and they must have had an immense amount of fun making some of those scenes - especially the shoot-out in Somerfield.

Sadly, they insisted on showing a trailer for 300 which has been completely spoiled for me by the snarking I've seen online about Spartans fighting in their underwear and also the apparent 'us? the Spartans? having gay sex? never happened...' line that the movie apparently takes, despite all evidence that the Spartans were quite happy with the old pederasty. Alas, no trailer for Curse of the Golden Flower after there was a poster outside for it.

I've also been abusing the Amazon dvd-by-post service to catch up on a variety of things and my list just doesn't seem to be getting any shorter. Last night I was watching the first three episodes of 21 Jump Street, where my brain kept mostly going 'wow, Johnny Depp is young in this' and 'it's a good thing Peter Deluise has other skills to fall back on because he's really quite lame as an actor'. Tell me, fellow UK peeps, did this show ever actually air over here? Because I don't remember it...

Oh, and is it just me or is the closing credits with the creepy hand flicking through the school yearbook really kind of icky? Not only does it remind me much too much of Monty Python, the fingers and particularly the thumb are really skinny and pale and just kind of bizarre.

I see that everyone is out in force at the supermarket buying their guilt offering flowers for Mother's Day tomorrow. Erk.

TV recap

Oct. 28th, 2006 06:03 pm
graculus: (hiro)
I'm still an episode behind with Battlestar Galactica, so I haven't seen the one that aired last night yet, but so far I'm loving this season. Of course, the high amount of CKR appearance to date doesn't hurt with that even if Spoilers ), nor does the fact that TPTB keep dealing with the repercussions of people's decisions, not later on down the line but pretty much right there and then. Which doesn't bode too well for Gaeta, does it?

Heroes - it's such a nice feeling to have a new show to go geeky over, and I'm enjoying this one so much. So many unanswered questions, of course, and now it's been picked up for an entire season there's a reasonable chance they'll get to answer some of them... Spoilers ) I find myself anxiously looking forward to episodes, and that's not a bad thing, is it?

Boston Legal - what can you say about a show where one of the protagonists decides Spoilers )

Dexter - Michael C. Hall, still hot! :) Still hoping that bad things will happen to Dexter's sister, because she's just too annoying...

Got to get around to the latest Veronica Mars and last night's Numb3rs too... But in non-tv news, my dvd of Fearless made its way into my sweaty mitts, so naturally I had to watch it immediately. Another one with absolutely zero extras, though, so I shall have to keep my eye out for more amply-endowed overseas editions because that movie just cries out for a good 'making of' documentary.
graculus: (hero)
If you just heard a wibbling noise coming from this direction, that was me discovering that Fearless (a fantastic movie and supposedly Jet Li's last old-school martial arts movie) is due out on R2 dvd on October 23rd! :)

This is excellent news, considering I'd been eyeing the non-subtitled Hong Kong dvds for months and wondering when (if ever) I might be able to get my hands on a copy with English subtitles...
graculus: (oh please)
A definite entry in the 'so obvious I saw it coming' stakes: hot on the heels of the external candidates for the post I'm currently covering not being anything like good enough to appoint, now it seems the internal candidate has some kind of crisis at home which means he's asked not to be interviewed at the moment. This is ominous, isn't it? All those who saw this coming, please feel free to laugh as much as I groaned internally at that news... ;)

Work is just crazily busy, but that's what happens when you try and do two jobs at the same time. Still, no major gaffes so far and I've almost finished my third week of the promised four. If nothing else, I've not been bored! Quite the opposite in fact, as I have almost more work than I can cram into the day.

I was already planning to take the bank holiday week off, in order to assist in completing my dissertation and now I think I'm going to take the week after off as well. I'm just too knackered to do much when I get home other than vegetate and sleep, which means the weekends are currently the only times I'm getting anything done on that and I'd hoped to be further along than I am.

In other news, the video of one of my favourite movies is starting to get knackered - I was watching it last night ('it' being The Fisher King, in case anyone was wondering), and it's showing its age. I'm left wondering whether all my other videos will eventually crap out from over-use. I don't really want to replace them unless I absolutely have to, but having already replaced Withnail and I, Curry and Pepper and LA Confidential, in the end I might have no choice... :(
graculus: (oh please)
Just finished watching Channel 4's 50 Films To See Before You Die, which might have been better off titled 50 Films Most of Which Film Four Will Be Showing Shortly.

Supposedly a list of essential movies voted for by 'film experts' and there's no Kurosawa? No film noir at all? (I'm assuming neither Touch of Evil or Chinatown really count...)

The sole representatives of the entire Far East movie industries were Princess Mononoke and Hero - I'd have expected to see maybe The Killer or one of Zhang Yimou's other movies get in there (with my personal vote being for Farewell My Concubine or Raise the Red Lantern).

The Coen Brothers got Raising Arizona as their sole representative, Powell & Pressburger got Black Narcissus and the token Hitchcock movie was North by Northwest. Hmmm. Lots to disagree with there... ;)

E.T.A. a link to the entire list.

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