A New Hope for Star Wars : Cast Breakdown

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It would be fair to say Star Wars Episode 7 was not in my top 20 “Most Anticipated Movies” a day ago. I can bang out twenty right now…

  1. Godzilla
  2. X Men DOFP
  3. X Men Apocalypse
  4. Avengers 2
  5. Avengers 3
  6. Batman vs Superman
  7. Justice League
  8. Interstellar
  9. Guardians of the Galaxy
  10. Ant Man
  11. Pitch Perfect 2
  12. TMNT
  13. Fast 7
  14. Raid 3 (I don’t know if it’s been confirmed but this will permanently be on my list until it IS made)
  15. Incredibles 2

Shit. That’s only fifteen. But still, you get the point. Hell, TMNT is on that freaking list! It’s going to be awful. We know this. Yet that should say how detached I was to the new Star Wars trilogy. They felt unnecessary (as do the stand alone films they’ll be putting out. Well, not the Boba Fett one. But a Yoda origin story? Puhlease.), and as much as I’d like to see Luke, Leia, and Han back, I also didn’t want to see them tarnished. But after today’s announcement, my whole perspective was flipped on its head.

Let me start by saying this. For whatever reason, I have faith that Mark Hamill, Carrie Fisher, and Harrison Ford aren’t going to phone these performances in. Especially Ford. He was always a question mark to me. It seemed like he always preferred Indiana Jones to Han Solo. And we saw all the good the passion for that character did him in the fourth installment. Han Solo will be less difficult to….maintain. There’s not as much physical activity with Han. As long as you can get those smart ass quips timed up and keep your suave, non nonchalant stature, he’ll be fine. We are also hearing that the first movie in the trilogy will be heavy on the Han. Hopefully the story focuses on our younger actors (and from what I’ve heard it will in the eighth and ninth films), not because I dislike Ford or Solo, but because stories need to go on.

I have unwavering confidence in Mark and Carrie (first name basis much), but I have no clue why. Can you picture them wanting to let fans down? I sure can’t. Especially Mark Hamill. If it wasn’t enough being Luke Skywalker, he’s also one of the most successful Jokers ever. Fans adore this man. I’ve heard they’ll have personal trainers. Clearly they don’t need to be jacked, just as long as they don’t look like Billy Dee Williams.

All that stuff is great and assuring, but let’s get to the goods. Today the cast for Star Wars episode 7 was released and you could say it made some waves. The original cast will be back (Hamill, Fisher, Ford along with Mayhew, Daniels, and Baker) but I want to talk about the newbies. Because they were the ones to get me back into the hype machine that is Star Wars EPISODE 7!!!!! Oh boy. Let’s talk about them shall we?

John Boyega

Donald Sterling is having the worst day ever, no? A fan favorite from the glorious “Attack the Block” (watch this film. Listen to the soundtrack. Both outstanding.), Boyega was rumored for a while to be in this film. Am I depressed he may have beaten out Jesse Plemons? Not a chance. Well, maybe a little. I love me some Landry. But not really. Boyega is going to be a star and deservedly so. I’m assuming he will be the main protagonist throughout the trilogy. Honestly, as long as I hear a “bruv” in there I’m all for it.

Daisy Ridley

I’m not even posting a picture. We’ll be seeing enough of this girl for YEARS to come. This girl. I don’t think she’s ready for what’s ahead. She will be every “nerds” wet dream. Not even nerds. Every one’s go to “IT” girl. I mean come ON, Han and Leia’s daughter (speculation)?! She is going to go down in pop culture lore. Probably the biggest no name out of this (allegedly) no name cast. She’s beautiful and that’s really the only thing that matters to me.

Actually that’s not true. It’s been brought up how there seems to be a lack of female characters. It’s just her and Carrie. And I agree, it’s sad. I will say if that’s what the story or script calls for then so be it. You don’t have to change it just to add a female (or black or gay or whatever) character in. Having said that, I truly hope she doesn’t just end up being a romantic device. Enough of this. Why can’t she have her own story to tell as a character that doesn’t involve being rescued by the male protagonist, then in turn falling for each other. Hey, I get it. It’s Disney. They gave us Simba and Nala. Sometimes we want more Mulan. Wait? That guy who trained her came back at the end? Dammit…

Adam Driver

giphyMr. Kennedy sent him to space all right. I have an unfair love for Adam Driver. My face was about to explode with joy when I heard the Nightwing rumors. If there were any truths to that rumor we now know why it wasn’t meant to be. He is the only reason I debate watching Girls. So far I haven’t caved to that monstrosity of a show, but it’s getting harder and harder. This is by FAR my favorite casting….

Oscar Isaac

 

Woah. Hold the phones. Oscar Isaac is going to be in Star Wars? Oscar fucking Isaac?! The man who lead the best film of last year? The man who holds the title still for “Best Beard”. No one has taken it from him yet. This took me by utter surprise. I’m still a bit speechless. I think the most appealing part of this casting is how up in the air his character is. He could be good or evil. Jedi or a Han Solo/Lando type. It’s mysterious and I love every second of it. It doesn’t get better than this folks. There’s no way to top th…

Andy Serkis

Andy-Serkis_320Jesus H Christ. Is this a joke? Is this a weirdly awesome joke? Give credit where credit is due. J.J. Abrams can cast some shit. Well, technically I should give credit to April Webster and Alyssa Weisberg. They’ve casted all of J.J’s stuff from LOST to Stark Trek to Super 8. And now these glorious few. Serkis I assume will be used as a motion capture actor as per his previous few works (Gollum, Caesar), but I’m pulling for him to have a…”regular” acting role. You know what I mean. The last one I can remember him in was from Nolan’s “The Prestige”. Either way I’m glad to have him aboard. “The Lord of the Rings” are my Star Wars so this news tickled my fancy all right.

Domhnall Gleeson

 

Watch that video. This guy is talented. And surprisingly hilarious. Who knew Bill Weasley was funny? Not sure what his role will be in this but he has that “Luke” feel to him. Plus his hair was touched by fire. Anyways, watch “About Time” from last year. A gem that went under the radar and has one of the best “Son/Dad” scenes I’ve watched in a long time.

Max von Sydow

At last we get to the legend. That’s what I’m reading at least. He’s been in a bunch, most notably “The Exorcist” and The “Seventh Seal”, but I’ll always know him as the guy who made me cry in “Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close”. Probably the best bet to play a Sith Lord. Driver is probably the up and coming bad boy but this is the big dog. Actually I have no clue. I could equally see him as a mentor. An evil mentor…. Ah no. Just glad to have him here. A bit worried about the age. If I’m not mistaken (probably am) I believe they are filming back to back to back. Hopefully they can squeeze in filming before he leaves us, as terrible as that sounds. It’s not on the GRRM scale, but it would suck to have to replace Sydow. Can you even replace him?

Well there it is. I’m fucking pumped. I’ve heard over and over again how we have a bunch of no names, and that’s true to an extent, but I think we have more “cult favorites” than no names. These people have been around and performed well (besides Daisy), it’s just no one has seen it yet. But rest assured they will. I’m glad Disney/JJ took this route. They have the luxury of casting these actors because it is Star Wars. It doesn’t really matter who is in the cast. People will go because it’s a SW film. Yes it certainly helps to have the original three back. But I would have went regardless. Long story, short: they used actors that I personally am a fan of, which in turn has me psyched for this new trilogy. It would seem I’m not the only one to be rejuvenated. Now I just need to survive until 2015…

 

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The Funniest Movie That Never Made You Laugh

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It’s Saturday afternoon. You’re hungover from the rotation of cheap beer and Bankers vodka shots the night before. The roommates went to get Arbys to settle the stomachs for round two tonight. That leaves the most important job of the day up to you. Finding that gem of a movie to day drink the…day away. Well look no further my good man. Let me introduce you to the funniest movie that never made you laugh.

It was a similar situation I found myself in during sophomore year, finals week ’09.  My buddy “Feels” (college is the last time it’s acceptable to have friends with douchey nicknames) and I happened upon a movie called “Loaded Weapon 1”. Unbeknownst to us, it would change our lives forever.

National Lampoons Loaded Weapon 1 was released in 1993 as a spoof comedy. “Spaceballs” did Star Wars, “Young Frankenstein” did Frankenstein, and Loaded Weapon 1 was our glorious mock Lethal Weapon. It had a story they probably stole straight from any cop movie from the 80s. An LA detective is killed for having a microfilm on how to make cocaine cookies. Two odd couple style cops team up to find the killer. Playing the Mel Gibson role is Emilio Estevez as Jack Colt. I’m not exaggerating when I say this is the best role of Emilio’s career. I’m in my twenties, I grew up with the Mighty Ducks. I don’t make these claims lightly. He is unstoppable in this film. If I had to give out Olympic medals for the best all time spoof actors it would go something like this:

Gold Medal – Leslie Nielsen

Silver Medal – Gene Wilder

Bronze Medal – Emilio Estevez

emilio-estevez-as-sgt-jack-colt-in-loaded

His sole performance in this film vaulted him past Mel Brooks and Anna Faris. The level of commitment he has to every line of dialogue is astounding. It truly reminded me of Leslie Nielsen. Perhaps there’s an alternate universe where Emilio’s career didn’t die after D3 in ’96. It was definitely in the cards for him to own the spoof world for the next 10-15 years akin to Nielsen. Honestly, who was dominating that market? You had virtually no one during the late nineties. Anna Faris and the Wayans brothers put out some respectable material in the early part of the new decade. Instead we were left with “Date Movie” and the chunks of puke that came after (Is “chunks of puke” a saying? I’m attempting to make it one). Allow me to hop off his dick real quick so I can also praise his co-star.

The great Samuel L. Jackson takes the reigns as Wes Luger (lolz at their last names). Not surprisingly (at least not now) Jackson is laugh out loud funny throughout the full 90 minutes. Who back in 1993 knew how funny this guy was? I glanced at IMDB and could only find a small role in “Coming to America”.

Honestly, I’m surprised he didn’t stick to a career solely in comedy. A little flick called “Pulp Fiction” might have had something to do with that. There are a couple key scenes where Jackson has some one at gunpoint. Both might be the funniest scenes in the film. His dedication to physical comedy brings tears to my eyes. If this were Madden his stats would look something like this:

Physical Comedy – 97

One Liners – 94

Balding Haircut – 99

Agility – 63

He’s an all time great and I’m grateful for all the iconic performances he’s given us, but man do I wish he’d of taken more comedic roles. Together with Emilio, they form my favorite comedy duo ever. I’ve watched this film more times than I care to admit and not once do these two become bland. I guarantee you’ll never see them on any of the Buzzfeed lists, but these two deserve respect.

Normally I would stop there. Estevez and Jackson DO make this a classic spoof comedy. What puts “Loaded Weapon 1” into untouchable territory is the massive amount of comedic talent in the film other than the two leads. From the villains to the smallest of cameos, this movie doesn’t disappoint. Let’s break ’em down!


Jon Lovitz – hqdefault
Lovitz plays the “Joe Pesci in Lethal Weapon” role. He’s the loud mouthed (more whiney) guy that helps out our two heroes. Or tries to help them out. He usually gets shot at or taken hostage without either Estevez or Jackson caring much. Probably not as funny as his character in “Rat Race” but it’s a delight to watch his misfortunes seemingly never end.

William Shatner – photo_lrgAnd here we have the main baddie in our comical cop story. Shatner plays a hilarious version of the Colonel from the Rambo trilogy. Now that I think of it, he’s probably not much different than the Priceline Negotiator but, it’s still gold. Another actor who you wouldn’t think could pull off comedy back then. He’s masterful with the dialogue he’s given throughout, never blinking at how cheesy each line is. I can’t stress how important that is in spoof movies. He’s dedicated for every minute on screen. General Mortars you are one of a kind.

Tim Curry – tim-curry-as-mr-jigsaw-in-loaded-weapon-1Tim Curry plays the right hand man to Shatners evil genius. As you can see from the picture, he has no qualms about going under cover. There are few voices more recognizable than Curry’s, but he puts a whole new twist on his golden pipes for this role. The way he emphasizes the “w” in “weapon” gets me every time. Watch “Loaded Weapon 1” for Tim Curry if anything. Pure brilliance.

Whoopi – National_Lampoons_Loaded_Weapon_1_41824_MediumShe doesn’t have many scenes (two or three), but she does have my favorite scene in the film. In the beginning of the movie, Tim Currys character visits Whoopi to get information out of her. Spoiler alert: she doesn’t survive the questioning. But the sequence between the two is comedic gold. It makes me miss pre-View Whoopi Goldberg. I mean come on…she went scene for scene with Swayze in “Ghost”!!! The lady can do it all. I look forward to her brief appearance every time I watch this.

Bruce Willis – 2514252Yup. Watch this movie.


I’d also like to list Phil Hartman, Dennis Leary, Cory Feldman, Kathy Ireland, Denise Richards, F Murray Abraham, Scotty from Star Trek, the two dudes from CHIPS, the principal from Breakfast Club, the TMNT, and Charlie fucking Sheen. Too much gold.

So now you’re wondering, why the hell haven’t I heard of it? It can’t be that great. It’s clearly not successful. So what happened? The sad answer….I don’t know. For one, I was only five when this baby came out. Unfortunately I didn’t have the income to support it. Originally it was set to have a sequel. They even signed a deal for one before the first was released ( the tagline was “Oh come ON, you knew it was coming!”) but the poor performance squashed that. My theory? Look at what else came out in the spoof market in 1993. This and…THIS.

Look. I understand I maaaay be exaggerating with how good it is. If it was as good as I made it out to be you’d have heard of it by now. All I’m saying is that you’d be hard pressed to find a better movie to watch while recovering from the night before. And that’s not the hangover talking.

Disney Countdown 120-116 “The Bottom Dwellers”

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120. Perfect Isn’t Easy – Oliver and Company

This list would have no merit if there wasn’t any Bette Midler. And what an entry she submits with “Perfect Isn’t Easy”. I’ll admit it’s not my favorite song from the film, but there’s no denying how catchy it is. Georgette was my first introduction to all the self absorbed women I would eventually meet in my life. At least she had the ability to bang out a ballad. I tend to put this into the “villain song” category. The song itself doesn’t scream “evil” but Georgette is the ultimate Disney bitch. “Perfect Isn’t Easy” is a perfect introduction to the character. Having said that, it’s still not good enough to crack the top 100. Maybe if Tito had made this list but alas…

119. I Thought I Lost You – Bolt

I know what you’re thinking. How did a Miley/Travolta duet not make the top 50? What? Nobody is asking that? Well it certainly went through my head. I’ll be the first to admit it. Miley Cyrus is my future wife. Who will unquestionably cheat on me with as many people as possible, but still. She’s incredibly sexy. John Travolta has been a singing god ever since I heard “Summer Lovin”. Long story short, it was hard to listen to this in an unbiased manner. “I Thought I Lost You” is a fun song at the end of a sub par Disney flick. I went into “Bolt” with pretty low expectations and got pretty much what I expected. It’s an interesting plot that kept me invested, but not many laughs and what seemed like a disinterested cast. Also, Susie from “Curb Your Enthusiasm” played a major character. It was impossible to take her seriously. I kept waiting for the words “bald”, “fat”, or “fuck” to pop out of her mouth. The flick’s worth a Netflix (Brazil) watch. If you’re a fan of Miley and Travolta then you’ll approve of this duet. If not, get the hell off of this blog.

118. Robin Hood and Little John Oo-De-Lally – Robin Hood

If there was an award for “Song Stuck in Matt’s Head the Most” this would be it. When I ran track in my high school days I had a friend who would sing Salt n Pepa’s “Push It” to himself while he ran. I decided to put my own twist on it and sing “Robin Hood and Little John Runnin Through the Forest” over and over again. Still do it as of this day. The downfall to this song is that it’s only about fifty seconds long. You’re going to need more substance than that if you want to compete with the big dogs. Also, for being a song that prides itself on getting stuck in ones head, it’s not even the most addictive tune from this movie. As we will certainly find out later…

117. My Funny Friends and Me – The Emperors New Groove

Talk about star power! First Bette Midler, then Miley/Travolta, and now Sting. We also have our first Oscar nominated song. Personally I don’t think “My Funny Friends and Me’ is all that great. Especially since Sting is the one who is singing it. I have much higher expectations for the man who gifted us “Every Breath You Take”. And THIS is the song that gets nominated for an Oscar. Meh. But I will say this. It’s the perfect song to describe Kuzco and Pacha’s relationship. They were the heart of the movie (a let down of a movie for Disney standards, but still) and hearing this as the credits roll did give me goosebumps. I don’t want to say that the Oscar nomination solely got this baby on my list………..but it kind of did.

116. Trashin The Camp – Tarzan

We get our first song from Tarzan: The Phil Collins Experience. You want scat? You want doo wop? You get “Trashin the Camp”. I honestly couldn’t tell the difference between the Phil Collins version and the version where NSYNC sings with him…so I merged them. The scene in the movie is pretty funny. Chimp Rosie O’Donnell and friends mess up Clayton’s camp while making sweet, sweet music. I will admit to having a soft spot for the song mainly because it’s the perfect song to do drunken (like there’s any other kind) karaoke to. Even more so if you’re like me and cannot sing for squat. If I’m not mistaken, Rosie O’Donnell can’t be on any Top 100 list ever. So that may also be holding this song back.


So we’re off to the races here at the Disney countdown. Five songs that I would most likely skip if they were shuffled onto my Itunes. Just kidding. “I Thought I Lost You” is a gem of a song and I don’t care who knows it. Next time we find out songs 115-111.

 

Silicon Valley – “Articles of Incorporation”

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Another week, another problem for Richard and company. Amidst all the hilarity (and there were TONS this week) Richard taught us that if we truly believe in something, we need to fight for it. In his case, Richard believes in Pied Piper as the name of his company. As we found out last week, Richard was unable to deposit Peter Gregorys check because the check was made out to PIed Piper and not Richard himself. Unfortunately Pied Piper is already a business. So here’s the question. Does Richard and the guys try to come up with a new name or attempt to make Pied Piper theirs?

As hilariously shown, Richard is the only one who favors the name. Erlich believes you need a name that is capable of being moaned during ejaculation. Dinesh compares their logo to someone eating a dick with a snack dick in waiting. And Gilfoyle…well he’s an illegal immigrant so who cares what he thinks.

Christopher Evan Welch has his strongest episode yet as Peter Gregory. I like how we are led to believe he’s just this quirky (borderline crazy) rich guy who can ramble about random things. Mainly fast food. Maybe he should’ve went to college after all. Instead we get a nice view into how his genius operates. I have no idea if the sesame seed/cicada thing is actually true, but damn did he sell it. It’ll really be interesting to see what the show does with his character. If you didn’t know, Christopher Evan Welch died in late 2013. It’s clear he was supposed to be a main fixture of the show. But as T.J. Miller said in his recent AMA, it’s sad to say but the show must go on.

Richard decides to go straight to the source and make a deal for his company name. Arnold (the farmer guy) initially agrees to a grand for the name before he mistakes Richard as a billionaire taking advantage of him. Love how he keeps being mistaken as a billionaire (no thanks to Erlich’s online post). The scenes with the guy from BevMo were perfect. I don’t know who that actor was but I feel like I’ve seen him in something. He reminds me of Keno(sp?) from TMNT 2: The Secret of the Ooze.

By episodes end Richard shows us the Herb Cohen he truly is. After almost getting beat to death by Arnold in his own house (luckily Richard and Co kept repeating their own names. Well, Dinesh said “Gilfoyle” but just as effective), Richard sticks to his guns and demands the same deal they shook on. Major guts shown by the Pied Piper founder. I know I would have folded at two grand, especially when Jared (Donald) claimed they could do two thousand.

Random Thoughts

  • Gilfoyle and Dinesh are becoming one of my favorite comedic duos. The reveal that Gilfoyle is the illegal immigrant and not the accused terrorist Dinesh was brilliant. Even made better by the fact that Gilfoyle has no remorse about it at all. It’s truly something that only three episodes in we are so invested in these characters. Especially these two, who are written as secondary characters to Richard, Peter Gregory, Erlich. I would love to listen to a weekly podcast with Dinesh and Gilfoyle.
  • I am enjoying the relationship between Richard and Erlich just as much. T.J. Miller is doing a wonderful job portraying Erlich. It’s a nice mix of the love/pep talks you receive from a big brother, the sternness of your father, and the laziness of the worst roommates we’ve all had in our lives. Richard needs someone like Erlich in his life. We all do. Erlich has that wild, perhaps delusional, enthusiasm for whatever and whoever is in his life. He won’t do anything for you, but he will make sure you’re not just sitting on your ass moping. And then take all the credit. It’s something special that again I don’t see other comedies putting in their shows. Perhaps I’m just not watching enough comedy. I still look forward to the heartfelt moments between the two.
  • After watching for the fifth time I just realized no Big Head this episode. I wonder how prevalent he will be going forward. There is already a pretty big cast, all of whom I want to see stretch their comedic muscles. Hopefully he’s not shunned entirely, but I understand the big five (Richard, Erlich, Jared, Dinesh, Gilfoyle) come first.
  • I’m not the only one with this complaint, but it’s pretty obvious. There’s a major lack of women on this show. I’m sure it’ll be addressed eventually. The interactions with Mochachino were hilarious. Even worse is that the one woman they do have on the show isn’t getting that much to do. Sigh.

– For any one who enjoyed the song in the credits

Funniest Lines

“Uuuuuu-ber” – Dinesh

It looks like a guy sucking a dick, and he’s got another dick tucked behind his ear for later. Like a snack dick.” – Dinesh

Typical lazy immigrant. These people think they can just walk into this country…”

” I did just walk into this country. My car broke down on the Ambassador Bridge. Took me another 15 minutes to get across the border. Major hassle.”  – Dinesh and Gilfoyle

“Technologies. Technolojesus. Oh FUCK.” – Erlich


 

My favorite episode so far. Though I’ve thought that about each one. Also…. SILICON VALLEY HAS BEEN RENEWED FOR A SECOND SEASON. Life is good. Hopefully the second season will be longer than the eight we are getting now. Either way I’m thrilled that this show seems to be a hit. Great job by HBO. I’m way too happy for people I’ve never met. Until next week!

DISNEY DEATHMATCH!!!!!!! (sorta)

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I don’t want to freak you out, but I had three parents growing up. There was my father of course. He taught me the fatherly things in life (shaving, throwing baseballs, “men don’t cry” talks). My mother was there to comfort me when I did cry and dry my eyes before the old man found out. And finally there was my third parent. As you are probably assuming this “parent” did not come in the form of a human. Nay. Instead it came in the form of VHS tapes with cool packaging. One day it would come in the form of “The Lion King”. The next, “Oliver and Company”. Unlike my flesh creators, my third parent would actually sing to me. Oh the songs I would hear throughout my childhood.

Listen, I’m sure this isn’t news to any of you. I get it. You’ve all had that same third parent. But the thing that separates me (and also makes me much more pathetic) is that I still listen to all of these songs. Religiously. Check my Spotify. You would assume I was one of your friends from high school who had a kid too early and now had to make a Disney Spotify playlist for them. Sadly, no. I’m just a twenty five year old male who bought, BOUGHT, the Frozen soundtrack. I know how to pirate music. I’ve done it for at least the past eight years. This was me choosing to pay for music. The music happened to be on a soundtrack to a movie that was geared towards toddlers. There was a time when I was self conscious about it. But those days are long gone. This is who I am for better or worse. Mostly worse obviously. And I’m not trying to brag about this. Not at all. What I’m trying to do….is make a list. A list of the greatest Disney animated songs.

So there it is, out in the open. I’m going to attempt to make a list of the best songs that the Disney animated world has produced. Do I believe myself qualified to make this list? Absolutely not. But I’ve also seen so many bogus fucking lists floating around on the subject that I felt an urge to weigh in. There are so many hidden gems out there that nobody ever mentions. Don’t get me wrong, they usually put the best of the best out there. Every one knows that “I Just Can’t Wait To Be King” will be around the top. I’m here to rank those smaller songs that I guarantee you’ve heard but have forgotten as the years passed by. In no way will I admit to getting the actual rankings correct. One hundred and twenty songs will make up my list. You heard me right, 120. That’s a shit ton of songs. And I had to make a butt ton of cuts, too. I did a lot of my picking and choosing on 4/20 of all days so…that should say something as well. All I know is that I owe it to my third parent to make this list. After all they’ve done for me. Oh, and that this will be fun. Really fucking fun. On to the rules then…

  • Must be an animated feature

I will only be ranking songs that are in a Disney movie that is animated. My apologies to “Mary Poppins”. So, so sorry “High School Musical” franchise. I wanted you in there “Muppets”, but it’s against the rules. This is also the case for songs that are popular because of rides at theme parks. Don’t want to point fingers.

  • Must be DISNEY

This should go without saying. But I have seen plenty of people claim “Anastasia” to be a Disney product. Anastasia is a god damn masterpiece of a movie (with one of the best soundtracks ever. Every Disney song dodged a bullet), but it’s not Disney. That’s all Fox. What’s that? You think I’m lying about how good the music is? Fine, you asked for it. Just remember YOU did this, not me.

 

  • Must be a theatrical release. No straight to DVD

This rule was a bit sketchy for me. I wasn’t always sure what went straight to theaters or which ones went to DVD/VHS. I’ll tell you what. To qualify you had to be on this list. Again, my apologies to Aladdin 2 and 3. The Return of Jafar and King of Thieves had some pretty catchy tunes. But none of them come close to this gem from The Lion King 2: SImba’s Pride

 

  • Must be an original song. Not a cover

Okay. This was a tricky one.  And I definitely broke this rule somewhere on the list. But what I’m trying to say is that the song can’t be an already popular song. Like “Life is a Highway” is one of “Cars” bigger hits. Sadly that song has been around before the Rascal Flats or whoever covered it. The same goes for “Shake Ya Tail feather” on the “Chicken Little” soundtrack. “Fantasia” is one of the most popular Disney films ever, mostly because of the music. Not a part of this list. The song could still be sung by a famous band/singer (Elton John anyone), it just has to be an original they produced for the film. Like I said…I may have broken this rule. And if I did, it was for a hell of a song. I hope.

  • Must be a movie. No television

Clearly this should be named the Phineas and Ferb rule. That show has some fantastic songs that probably should be on this list but can’t because it’s a TV show. They put out a movie? Well now…that’s interesting.

  • Pixar Allowed

Obviously this should be brought up. I don’t necessarily consider Pixar to be Disney. It’s like how some people don’t consider Arnold Schwarzennegger to be an American citizen. I mean he is. Those people are just idiots. Anyways, Disney bought Pixar so they are part of the family. And need to be considered. It would feel wrong not to have them in here.


 

It’ll certainly be tough when it comes to ranking. I will take into consideration how popular the movie is. If you are a great song carrying a great movie, you have a better chance than a great song that’s in a so/so flick. Also, songs that are in the film I hold in higher regard than covers of said songs. Example. ” A Whole New World” film version will always be better than ” A Whole New World” Peabo Bryson version. Don’t know who Peabo Bryson is? You will find out my friend.

Those are pretty much the only rules I could think of. The rest is fair game. One hundred and twenty of the best songs Disney has ever released. It’s all up to me to put them in the right order. There are plenty of story lines for this tournament (is it a tournament? I don’t know. Deathmatchlist?). Will a song from a major conference win (The Lion King, Aladdin, Beauty and the Beast)? Maybe some of the lesser known gems will step up. Will the old veterans (Snow White, Pinocchio, etc.) be able to hang around with the new hot shots (Frozen, Tangled, etc)? Who is the ultimate Disney singer, Elton John or Phil Collins (or Billy Joel)?!

This will most likely take up months of my life, so I hope readers other than myself take some joy in this. At least get angry about how terrible of a job I did. If anything, I hope this leads some of you to watch a few of these movies like you did in decades past. Or even some you decided not to watch (cough TANGLED cough). You don’t have to watch as many of them as I do (that’s weird), but just for nostalgia if nothing else. I’ll leave you with the same thing I told my parents years ago. “I’m not gay. I just really, really love Disney.”. Not that there’s anything wrong with that. With homosexuality. There’s plenty wrong with still liking Disney…

Next time – Songs 120-116

 

 

 

Silicon Valley – “The Cap Table”

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My apologies for the late review, but every time I go to write about this episode I just end up watching it instead. Even now I have it playing in the background. And that’s just one of the great things about Silicon Valley. It is incredibly re-watchable. There were so many laugh out loud moments evenly placed throughout the episode. But amid all the comedic moments there were some pretty big decisions that had to be made.

There are a number of possible reasons why I’m not rich and successful, or the head of my own company. I just need the opportunity. I just need some financial backing. I just need…whatever. It’s all bullshit. Because frankly, I wouldn’t know what the hell to do if I was given the opportunity or money to build something. We come to find Richard is having the same problem.

Richard created something (an algorithm in this instance) but doesn’t know where to go from there. He thought Peter Gregory would do every thing for him and lead him to success. Or at least be his cool college professor who holds his hand towards making it big. Unfortunately for Richard this is real life, not a college course. He needs to have things like cap tables and business plans. More importantly, he has to have an idea of what his product is. What this company is. That starts with deciding who in his gang is valuable and who is “fat that needs cutting”.

With those decisions come the aura of coming off as an “asshole”. We’ve all been in that position. It’s comparable to something as simple as being the captain of a pick up basketball game. You need to choose the four best players for your team. Some people have qualities that no one else brings, and there’s that one who is the “master of no trades”. And in Richards case that person happens to be his best friend, Big Head. As I’ve said, this episode was really, really funny. Yet I found myself empathizing with Big Head. How often have you thought yourself mediocre at a bunch of things, but never exquisite at one? Especially as a young adult trying to decide on what you want to do with your life. I’m a decent cook but not good enough to be a chef. I work out five days a week but I don’t have the body or the know how to become a personal trainer. It’s something you just don’t see in other “sitcoms” (cough The Big Bang Theory cough).

The episode ends with Big Head hired by Gavin out of spite for $600k just when Richard decides he’s in because if he wanted to sell out he would of done that already. On top of that, Gavin and the fit nerds who work for him are trying to copy Richards algorithm (Clearly I’m not in the tech world. So I don’t know technically what they’re doing, but I get the gist that they want to put out his thing before Richard and Co. do. Under the name Nucleus…whatever the fuck that is). Oh yeah, Richard also can’t deposit his 200k until he files as Pied Piper as a legit business with the IRS. Shit keeps piling up on Richards doorstep and I can’t wait to see how he stays afloat.

Funniest Line(s)

There were too many to list a single one. Honestly, I should just post the scene where Big Head keeps walking in on getting shit talked.

” The idea that I have a boner and you have a boner and he has a boner and we’re all sitting there with boners in our pants ” – Dinesh

” That was weird. I don’t know why I did that. You kind of have like a kingish feeling to you. Like a norse hero from Valhalla ”  – Jared after bowing

” Mushroom stamp….that’s great ” – Erlich

Another great episode for Silicon Valley. As it stands, my top three fears in life are:

  1. Death
  2. Flying
  3. Silicon Valley being cancelled

Hopefully HBO gives this show at least another 8 episodes. It comes on after Game of Thrones so that can only help its chances in terms of viewership. Until next week.

 

The Raid 2 – The Best Day of this Bloggers Life

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For the first time in over a decade I got my ass kicked. Physically, mentally, emotionally I was assaulted. Sometimes it was with a bat (or a hammer). Other times with knives of various lengths. But for the duration of the 2 hour and 30 minute beat down, the weapon of choice was our very own flesh and bones. Well, by ours I mean all the actors in the absurdly good sequel to “The Raid: Redemption”.

If you haven’t seen the first one, I’m begging you to give it a chance. I’ll even pray if you want me to (for all the good it’ll do). Especially if you like non stop action movies. After the first 10 minutes of the first movie it’s fight after fight after fight. That’s an hour and a half of hardcore ass kicking. We are introduced to the best martial artist since Jackie Chan in Iko Uwais (no disrespect to Tony Jaa. All disrespect to Jet Li). We also meet probably my favorite villain of any movie, ever. Did you just hear me? My favorite villain of all time! This coming from a guy who cried and walked out of a college class after Heath Ledger died. “The Raid: Redemption” was the best action movie I’d ever seen. Was. Until about 12:30 PT on Sunday April 13th 2014. That was the moment I witnessed the greatest action movie of my generation, “The Raid 2”.

I know how high I’ve made your expectations. Believe me I’m well aware. The thing is….I don’t care. It’s so rare we see a sequel better than the original. Hell, we hardly ever get a decent sequel. This movie is easily in the starting five of “best sequels ever” lineup.

  • The Godfather 2
  • The Dark Knight
  • Terminator 2
  • Mighty Ducks 2
  • The Raid 2

The fact that this movie was two and a half hours and I never ONCE felt restless says a whole lot. I honestly wanted more when the credits appeared. We were treated to more Rama, more bad ass henchmen (two of which are pictured at the top), and even a Terminator 2 storyline (where the bad guy from the first one is now a good guy). “The Raid 2” gives viewers everything we wanted from a sequel. It’s like the director could read our minds. Let me stop myself there. This man needs to be given credit. He’s edited, written, and directed BOTH of these movies. All himself. Hey Hollywood, how about we give Gareth Evans a summer blockbuster already? Frankly, I don’t care what you give him, just give him something. Anything.

When it comes to criticisms of this flick I’ll only allow one. Subtitles. Personally, I don’t mind them at all. They didn’t stop me from loving “Pan’s Labyrinth”. The original Hunger Games, “Battle Royale”, is still lovably gruesome. And this might still be the best action movie ever if you mute it. But subtitles aren’t for everyone. I just can’t do 3D. Even for films where they are designed for that specific purpose (Avatar I’m looking at you). I’d still rather watch it in regular 2D. Just a personal preference. So I’ll give you the subtitle argument if you want to nit pick. But that’s as far as I’ll go.

That’s all I’m writing on this movie (I told myself I’d write nothing at all) because I just cannot do it justice. All I’m doing is gushing. And probably to the films detriment. Action movies pretty much raised me. That doesn’t make me a savant, but I sure as hell appreciate the good ones. And I’ll go to war over the great ones. I’ve seen them all folks. From the martial arts icons (Bruce Lee, Jackie Chan, Tony Jaa), to our 80s gods (Arnold, Stallone, Willis, Van Damme. You’re van damme right I said Van Damme), the next generation (Keanu, Damon, Cage, Cruise, Crowe, etc) and even now to our current stars (Neeson, superhero flicks, Expendables, everyone in Fast Five). None of their movies compared. All of them I loved. But I’ve never been so satisfied after an ass kicking than after seeing The Raid 2.

As I was writing this I saw Tony Jaa will be appearing in the third installment of the franchise. Holy. Fuck.