Pop Culture Round Up
The Wire - Okay, so I finally finished watching the whole series. Best show ever? Mostly. It's five seasons and four of them are quite simply some of the most outstanding television I've ever seen in terms of character, narrative, and overall scope. And then there's the fifth season, where the show sort of went off the rails. Not badly; it was still miles better than, say, NCIS: Los Angeles. But it really wasn't up the to standard set by seasons 1-4. However, don't take that like I'm telling you to not watch. WATCH IT. It's a phenomenal show.
C-dog's Rating: Five out of Five Spot-On Bawlmor Accents
Paranormal Activity - Creepy! I know I'm a little late to this party, but yeah... the hype was fairly accurate. It's a damn unsettling movie, though I wouldn't call it "scary" in the traditional sense. It did a number on me, though, but a large part of that could be because I'm deathly afraid of the paranormal and activities. Combining the two is a recipe for me sleeping with the lights on, clutching in fear the pillow that I pretend is a girlfriend like in The Lonely Guy.
C-dog's Rating: Four out of Five Caspers
The House of the Devil - Also creepy! This is a little indie flick about babysitting and Satan worshipers that was shot last year, but looks like it was made in the 80's. And I don't mean like Wedding Singer, lame Flock of Seagulls haircut jokes 80's... I mean it looks like a horror movie from the 80's, with all the washed-out film stock and fuzzy synth score that that implies. It quite frankly kicked my ass. Be warned, though... it's a teensy bit on the slow side; I consider this a good thing (it builds the tension and lets us get to know the characters), but it might also put some people (ADD pussies) to sleep.
C-dog's Rating: Five out of Five Pentagrams
Crazy Heart - Given all the Oscar buzz that Jeff Bridges has gotten from this thing, I was surprised at how... you know... not good it was. He was great, don't get me wrong... said Oscar is totally in the bag, and deserved... but the movie itself was very mediocre, Lifetime Original-ish, and not really that much about outlaw country (as was my initial understanding). If you saw The Wrestler, it was kind of like that but with less Ram Jams and Marisa Tomei boobage.
C-dog's Rating: Two out of Five Drunk Musicians
Love is a Mixtape by Rob Sheffield - I made the mistake of reading this cover-to-cover on my flight back from New York. It is quite possibly one of the saddest books I've ever read and when I got off the plane, I went straight to a bar and got cop-punching drunk. The book is Sheffield telling the story of how he got married young to an amazing girl who, one day, just DIED. Like, embolism out of nowhere... that kind of death. It deals with him being a widower at 30 and all that, plus it weaves their mutual passion for music (he's a writer for Rolling Stone and Spin) throughout. Seriously excellent book, but man does it make you kind of want to shoot yourself in the face. Highly recommend for those too happy with their lives!!!
C-dog's Rating: Four out of Five Horrible Tragedies
The Catcher in the Rye - Can you believe I made it nearly 30 years as an American male without reading this? I think I've been telling people for years that I'd read it, but that's all bunk. I finally got it done while in NYC, reading it on the subway, which was if we're being honest a bit rich. I felt like "that guy" who'd just moved there and was trying to do New York-y things. If I'd been listening to Velvet Underground on my iPod while reading Catcher in the Rye on the subway, I'm pretty sure I'd have turned into an Empire State Building replica souvenir. Oh, anyway, the book was good; felt very true to life, and it made me want to read more of his stuff (what little is out there).
C-dog's Rating: Five out of Five Crumby Phonies