Not Exactly the Top Movies of 2012

I’ve written before about the clinically obsessive behavior I engage in when it comes to watching movies. In addition to that, I keep a detailed running list of all films I watch in a year. For instance, here’s how 2012 turned out:

  • I watched 391 films total (yes, that’s more than one film per day).
  • 166 of those films were listed in the Megalist.
  • 67 of those films were new releases; the rest were older.
  • 337 of the total 391 films were films I’d never seen before.
  • The numbers include watching films over (i.e., I saw Avengers twice, so it counts twice). There are very few instances of this. Except for the part where I watched The Apple five times. I can’t explain that.

So, yes, I watch a terrifying amount of movies. In my defense, I don’t watch TV (I haven’t had an antenna or cable since 2009), which means that, even at a rate of more than one film per day, I still watch less media than the average American. (That, too, is terrifying.)

Anyway, at the end of the year, I do like to look back upon what I’d seen. I’ll spare you the Top 10 list format, and instead give highlights of my cinematic 2012. Continue Reading →

Thursday Night: PowerPoint Karaoke!

Remember that PowerPoint Karaoke will be return victorious to the Bryant Lake Bowl on THURSDAY NIGHT! See improv comedians bravely attempt to give a PowerPoint presentation for a deck that they have never seen before.

This awesome event happens at the Bryant-Lake Bowl on Thursday, December 27th, at 10:00pm! Doors will open at 9:30pm, so arrive early and have a beer!

This month, our presenters will be Sharon Stiteler, Dawn Krosnowski, Tim Uren, and PPK newcomer Tom Reed!

And I’ll be there slinging slides, so I’ll be looking for YOU.

Tickets are $7 ($5 with a MN Fringe button), and can be purchased at the Bryant Lake Bowl website!

Please attend! Laugh! Drink beer!

A High-Speed Car Chase Christmas

In lieu of an actual photo, I'll approximate my experience with this image from The Blues Brothers.

In lieu of an actual photo, I’ll approximate my experience with this image from The Blues Brothers.

On Christmas, I got to be witness to a crime. How was your holiday?

Fes Works and I were driving home on Christmas Day, fat and be-gifted from my dad’s family’s annual ice skating / brunch ritual. I was just about to turn left onto the side street that led to my apartment’s parking lot; I had paused, because there were two cars in the oncoming lanes of traffic. One was poised to turn left, but the other car behind it seemed to have plans to go straight, so I was waiting for it to pass.

The oncoming cars also paused at the intersection, because they saw something that I did not. A moment later, from my right…

VOOOM SQUEAL a dark blue/purple sedan came SCREAMING through the intersection, veering at a 45 degree angle and clearing my front bumper by what seemed to be inches. The car missed both going straight and turning left, and thus dove headlong through a street sign into the lawn of the Lutheran church across the street from my apartment. The car plowed through the snow and the lawn into the church’s parking lot and started heading around the building.

Continue Reading →

Goodbye, Instagram. Hello again, Flickr.

Hello, Flickr my dear. I've missed you.

Hello, Flickr my dear. I’ve missed you.

Earlier this week, the Internet was abuzz with news of new terms of service from Instagram. At first glance, the new terms seemed to indicate that Instagram could sell user photos as stock photography, without compensation to the user. It probably wasn’t that simple, as the legalese of the new terms was unclear, but users balked, and eventually Instagram backed down.

My personal guess was that the stunt was an attempted rights grab. Instagram was trying to see what it could get away with without anyone noticing. However, it’s also possible it was just a legal PR blunder, of the breed we Internet-heads see every couple of months these days. Either way, it boils down to the fact that nobody trusts Instagram’s parent company, Facebook, with rights or privacy anymore.

I liked Instagram. It was extremely simple to use. The social network aspect was also clean and simple. I’m even a defender of the often-derided overused photo filters. Yeah, few people could truly make magic happen with the photo tools, but that’s the nature of, well, everything.

Yet in the midst of the rights kerfuffle, I deleted my Instagram account. I didn’t wait to see if the company would revise their stance, nor did I give them the benefit of the doubt. I just up and killed the account.

Why? I had a few reasons: Continue Reading →

Butt-Numb-a-Thon 2012

BNAT 2012

Eric “Superfly” Burgess, myself, and Brian Day outside the Alamo Drafthouse after being in a movie theater for over 24 hours.

The Butt-Numb-a-Thon film event is part sheer unadulterated glee, part gruelling endurance test. First, you have to apply to attend, and then hope desperately that you make it in. Then, assuming all goes well, you arrive at the theater at noon on one day, and exit sometime after noon on the next day. In between, Harry Knowles just shows you stuff. You don’t know what he’s going to show you. It might be a sneak premier. It might be a vintage film. It might be awesome. It might be horrible. You don’t know. You just need to summon all your zen powers and enjoy the rollercoaster ride.

Butt-Numb-a-Thon 2012, aka BNAT 14, is the 11th BNAT I’ve attended. I’m one of the lucky few to be invited back year after year, but I honestly never want to take that for granted. I consider the event my Christmas, where I spend a weekend in Austin, TX with my cinematic family. I’m lucky to be part of a large group of Minnesotans that also get to attend every year (and who are the original reason I was first able to attend the event), and this is the event where I actually get to spend time with them. Thanks to BNAT, this group of friends has expanded to include people who live all over the country and all over the world.

So, I love BNAT, and deeply thank Harry Knowles for turning his birthday into an amazing event that actually gives back to everyone who attends.

Continue Reading →