Thursday, November 19, 2015

My Take on the Refugee Crisis

Unless you live in a cave with no Wi-Fi, we’ve all read and seen the news this week about Paris; whether it’s print media or news, online or social media. A lot of expletives and opinions and opinions with expletives are being thrown around about religion and refugees. Regardless of your thoughts about Islam or Isis, the real issue isn’t so complicated. Let’s break it down to its basest form; this is, at its heart, simply a case of bullying. Isis is a bully who happens to be playing in a very large schoolyard that is the Middle East, albeit a murderous global bully.

Isis and their ilk are responsible for horrendous atrocities against every conceivable group. Men, women, children. Gay or straight. Jew, Christian, Muslim. Heads are quite literally rolling or being tossed off rooftops in the Middle East for the smallest of perceived infractions or in some cases no infraction at all.  This brings us to the mass exodus of Syrians.

Syrians are leaving in droves for a better life in the west. Canada is set to receive 25,000 refugees in the coming months, but accepting refugees isn’t the answer. Racist! Heartless! Insensitive they’ll cry!
Most of the refugees fleeing are undoubtedly innocent civilians with no interest in mayhem or murder who need our help and support without question. But what if those who wish to do us harm use the mass exodus as a means to sneak in to any number of western countries? It’s been reported that more than one of the assailants in Paris entered France just this way. With 25,000 refugees being welcomed into Canada, it stands to reason Isis would use that as a potential Trojan Horse. If 1% of the migrants is radicalized, that’s 250 potential terrorists on Canadian soil. If just 1/10 of 1% is radicalized, that’s still 25 people. Too many.

Welcoming countless migrants does nothing to address the root cause. It only serves to upset everyone and plays directly into the bully’s hands. That’s what they want. You need to step up to a bully and put him in his place. Unfortunately for the pacifists that means boots on the ground and lots of guns, big ones. The only thing a murderous, cold blooded bully understands is a bigger bully. The Liberals and their supporters would have you believe that sending warm coats and Advil will somehow endear radical terrorists to Canada. It won’t. It doesn’t matter what we do or try to bribe them with, they hate our way of life and want us gone. Sitting around in a circle at a candlelight vigil singing “Imagine” won’t bring peace to the Middle East.

These refugees need their homes back. Canada needs to support her allies in the fight against radical Muslim terrorists. Pulling our jets out of conflict zones does nothing but weaken Canada’s position on the world stage. Our armed forces were not drafted. These are brave men and women who volunteered for duty knowing full well what they would be potentially walking into. To demand Canada remove its armed forces, (and give in to fear,) from active combat, diminishes what they do and the sacrifices already made by those who have given their lives in the line of duty. It is our job as a strong first world nation to defend those who can’t defend themselves. We must fight until every single refugee is no longer a refugee, but a free citizen in their own country. If we want to return to being the world’s peacekeepers then we first need peace. Radicalized Muslims are not people who can be reasoned with. They are evil murdering bullies and sometimes a bully just needs to be kicked back!

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Oddest/Worst Casting Choices

So I've been off of work for going on 7 weeks now. But recently I found $60 in the parking lot at my local library branch and since as of today Lance Armstrong and I are now tied for Tour de France wins. I figure things are picking up for me! I guess it's about time for another blog entry.

With all my down time I've been watching a lot of movies lately. Most are movies I've already seen... many times. But some are just movies I'm revisiting for the first time in many years. While watching Jaws it occurred to me; what's up with the old broad with the 10 year old son? Well in honour of Alex Kintner's Mom, here's my picks for oddest casting choices in no particular order;
"Kiss me Bruce"

Maggie Gyllenhaal in The Dark Knight

The primary role of any love interest in any superhero movie, even a Christopher Nolan superhero movie, is to be pretty and be available for abduction. Mags nailed the B requirement but unfortunately falls short of the most important part, PRETTY! "Hi there. I'm Bruce Wayne and I have a ugly girl fetish." Too mean? Sorry friends. Here's Billionaire Playboy Bruce Wayne, he could have any woman he wants, and he picks the homeliest girl in Gotham? C'mon she looks like Eric Stoltz in Mask. (Good movie, even with Cher, check it out).

Yes kids, this almost happened.
Nicolas Cage as Superman

Oh sweet merciful gods of casting in Hollywood, we thank thee for not actually letting this abomination see the light of day! It was the late 90's and Tim Burton had apparently suffered a brain aneurysm when he decided he wanted to make a new Superman movie staring one our generation's worst actors. Take a long hard look at the picture folks. It is strangely hypnotic in a train wreck kind of way. Look away, I dare you! I think you'll agree, no other words are necessary.

Lee Fierro in Jaws

Miss Amity 1917

Don't know the name? I'm not surprised. I IMDB'd her and her only credits are Jaws and Jaws: The Revenge. Not too surprising considering she looked to be in her 60's in Jaws. In a movie that's so great she was oddly miscast as young Alex Kintner's mom. You remember Alex, the 10 year old on the raft eaten by Jaws? That's him, the pre teen with the octegenarian mom.

Adam Sandler in ANY tough guy role.

Am I missing something? When did movie makers decide we are all so dense that we would think Adam Sandler could pull off any sort of tough guy role. OK try it once, but please, with a few exceptions, every role?Sandler barely qualifies as funny as it is with is high pitched voice and constant yelling. Please don't make us swallow the fact that he is a strong rugged man's man on top of it.

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Kate Bosworth in Superman Returns

I realize I'm in the minority of people who actually like Superman Returns. I thought Brandon Routh was a fantastic choice for Supes and Kevin Spacey is always great. Why oh why then did Bryan Singer pick a 20 year old blond (yes I know Amy Adams is a redhead) to play Pulitzer prize winning mother Lois Lane? This is the opposite of the above. Unlike Mrs. Kintner, she's too young! So Lois won a Pulitzer at 15 and became a mother at 18? Perhaps if they made a direct sequel it would have been revealed that she was really Lois's long lost 12 year old daughter playing dress up with mommy's clothes.

Jake Lloyd/Hayden Christensen as Anakin Skywalker

Oh George you silly bugger! I have now become convinced that George Lucas suffered an unknown stroke in about 1990ish thus removing any ability to make good decisions. Jake Lloyd was his pick to play prepubescent Darth Vader. OK maybe the kid wowed during the audition process and froze when the cameras rolled like Fred Flintstone. But did they not watch Jingle all the Way? Fool me once shame on you, fool me twice shame on George.

scared yet?

"So we're ready to cast for the younger version of the most iconic villain in cinema history George."
"Excellent, lets get the whiniest, stiffest, scrawniest guys in here first. Oh, oh and he shouldn't be too tall." Is how I imagine that production meeting went. We're to believe this brat makes an ex-queen fall in love with him and grow up to run the Empire? Really?

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

My top 10 Action Scenes

1 Saving Private Ryan

The opening 20 minutes of Saving Private Ryan are enough to win an Oscar on their own. Never has the brutality and terror of war ever been presented so memorably. It is quite possibly the best war movie ever.

2 Heat

This Robert DeNiro Al Pacino actioner contains one the best shootout scenes ever put to film. Watching Val Kilmer and Robert DeNiro shoot their way out of downtown Los Angeles is heart pounding! Turn your volume up and let the violence wash over you... ahhhhhh... good stuff.

3 The Dark Knight

There are so many good things about The Dark Knight, particularly the open sequence with the Joker pulling of the heist of a mob bank. The scene is made even better by the always great William Fichtner as the bank manager. By the way, I think Aaron Eckhart would have made a better Bruce Wayne/Batman. The gruff Batman voice Christian Bale puts on just doesn't work for me.

4 Speed

Not so much a scene but pretty much an entire half of the movie, the bus with a bomb racing through Los Angeles is a fun, heart pounding, ride. Dennis Hopper as the baddie doesn't hurt either. Speed also has the distinction of being one of only 2 good Keanu Reeves movies as well.

5 Die Hard with A Vengeance

One of my favourite action movies ever. The original Die Hard will go down in action movie history as one of the greatest, but for me number 3 is better. With Samuel L Jackson on board and set in New York, watching John MacLean and Zeus race around solving Jeremy Irons' riddles is both funny and exciting.

6 Indiana Jones and The Last Crusade

The escape from Castle Grunwald is some of the best Indy action ever! From the moment Henry Jones Sr. sets the room on fire to the moment Indy and his dad out race a wingless plane through a tunnel to Senior taking down a German fighter plane armed with only an umbrella and seagulls. What's not to like?

7 Robocop

It's mega-violent and mega fun! I think there was less machine gun fire during the Iraq War, but that's exactly what makes this movie great. Add Kurtwood smith as the purely sadistic Clarence Boddiker and Miguel Ferrer as the stereo typical 80's yuppie business man and this is a classic action movie!

8 Casino Royale

I didn't think Daniel Craig was the best choice to play 007 when I first heard the news but he pulls it off amazingly. Casino Royale opens with an absolutely eye popping parkour chase that has to be seen to be believed. Just one of the scenes that makes Casino Royale the best of the James Bond movies. That's right, THE BEST!

9 The Rock

It's 12 years old and stars Nicholas Cage. You would think Nicholas Cage alone would make this movie garbage. After all he makes every other movie he's in garbage. But thankfully it also stars Sean Connery, one one of the coolest men to ever walk the earth, and that includes Jesus. It's a treat watching Sean rampage through the streets of San Francisco in a stolen Hummer.

10 Jaws

C'mon, it's Jaws! Is there anyone who hasn't seen it? It was super scary back in the day, but admittedly, not so much now. My son watched it and didn't think it was nearly as scary as it was back in olden days, but it's still a beauty!

Friday, January 6, 2012

I'm a Twit

So I did it. I gave in to cyber peer pressure and finally joined Twitter. I always said they took the most annoying part of Facebook, that being the status updates, and made their own website. Yay! I get to hear about the fiddle-faddle and most mundane events in peoples lives! Now that's sarcasm! I can't even begin to tell you how little I care that your washing the dishes, or walking the dog, or painting your nails, or reading the latest issue of US. Don't get me wrong I like hearing and reading about IMPORTANT updates in peoples lives, you bought a new car, you got a new job, or even your review on the latest movie(s). But minutia? Nuh-huh!

However! I must admit, that twitter is mildly amusing. I quite enjoy reading some of the comedic updates from the celebs. Particularly enjoying Steve Martin. Anyway I guess you can call me a twit now.

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Harry Potter and the Quite Frankly I Don't Care

Today I treated myself to a movie. I went to see Transformers 3. I quite enjoyed it, it was a typical, big blockbuster summer popcorn flick and great way to kill a couple of hours. It almost made up for Transformers 2... almost. But I digress, for this is not the reason for my post and the reason I have come out of blogging semi-retirement. With apologies to Harry Potter fans.

Today at my local cinema house the last installment of the Harry Potter franchise will premier at midnight. My movie started at 12pm. There were already people lined up for the midnight showing. When my movie ended at around 2:30, the lineup had swelled to the length of the building. Now lining up for a movie 12 hours early is not in itself all that bad. And even though I would never lineup for 12 hours, I can understand it, after all I am a Star Trek geek.

However in line, were full grown adults, mostly women, who seemed to not have any mental deficiencies or learning disorders, who were in full costume, complete with wands. Ok, so now we're bordering on full blown nerd alert! (In fairness I would say the same thing about trekkies). But even though I have never dressed up myself, I know where they are coming from, I am a Star Trek geek.

The thing that pushed me over the edge and compelled my cranky self to blog was the fact that in broad daylight, in full view of anyone with eyes that work, and at the top of their lungs I might add, they were casting imaginary spells on each other and cheering each other on. Wow! Seriously people? Did I mention I'm Star Trek geek? I have buckets of mint in package Star Trek action figures, I have all my movies and series DVDs prominently displayed in my home, IN MY HOME, and I can tell you with certainty that I have never seen anything so fucking nerdy in all my life, and I have been to the Star Trek experience in Las Vegas people!

I will admit that I have never read a Harry Potter book, but I have tried, oh how I've tried to watch the movies! What the hell am I missing? NOTHING happens! I don't care about the characters, I felt no sense of peril for them. Honestly, help me out here, am I watching some chinese bootlegged copies of the movies? My God, what is compelling these adults to wait in line for over 12 hours? Presumably they have already read the books and know how it will end! What's the payoff? I don't get it.

Well to anyone who does like the Harry Potter movies, enjoy! I will be at home drinking my Romulan Ale, making fun of you. :)

Friday, January 14, 2011

We've Hit A New Low

I don't blog often. To this day I don't even know where the term blog came from or what it means. But once in a while something happens that just drives a man to rant. Today such a something happened. In its infinite wisdom the Canadian Broadcast Standards Council (CBSC) has banned Money for Nothing by Dire Straits.

On the heels of the decision in the states to edit Mark Twain's Huck Finn and Tom Sawyer, the CBSC has found that a radio station in Newfoundland breached the Canadian Association of Broadcasters’ (CAB) Code of Ethics and Equitable Portrayal Code in its broadcast of the song “Money for Nothing” by Dire Straits on February 1, 2010. The song contained a word that referred to sexual orientation in a derogatory way. All radio stations who are members of the Canadian Broadcast Standard’s Counsel must adhere to the code.

So ONE woman in Newfoundland complained about the word "faggot" and now the song is banned which means it can only be played in an edited form. Where the hell do we live, North Korea? One stupid person complains and a song is banned? Since when did one person make the rules? Don't we need a majority of people in a democracy?

ONE woman complained about a 25 year old song and now it has to be edited. 25 years old people! Does this woman live in a cave? There are what, 30+ million people in Canada? Is there anyone who hasn't heard this song? 25 years later she complains? Get a life!

By the way, the word "fag" is allowed but not faggot. How long before "I Shot the Sheriff" or "Hey Joe" (who's going down to shoot his old lady) is banned? How long before "Imagine" is banned? It's not as if I'm a huge fan of Dire Straits but censorship stinks! Here's a novel idea, and this goes for the Mark Twain editing too, how about EDUCATING rather than relying on the government to babysit you or your kids. Or here's an even better idea, change the fucking channel idiot!

Banning song lyrics is a slippery slope. A downward slope. Banning words gives them power, instead of hiding them we need to look at them in their context, (Money for Nothing and Tom Sawyer are both about intolerance,) their history, their meaning. Hey I'm all for hate speech laws but this is not that. This out and out censorship and it's not right!

Friday, August 20, 2010

The Stupidity of Horror Movies

I watched the remake of Friday the 13th last night. I know it's been out for some time now, but that's pretty much how my movie watching is now, my new releases are about 6 months behind the rest of society. What a stupid movie.

Let's be clear, I was not expecting Avatar, but I find it difficult to pay attention to a movie when I'm rolling my eyes every 5 minutes. Maybe I missed the point, but wasn't this movie, and movies of this ilk, supposed to be, oh I don't know, scary! I think part of the problem is movie makers (writers, directors, etc) have confused gory with scary. More blood and creative ways to murder do not equal scary. Wouldn't it much scarier if the characters were relatable and real? Not rich, horny, moron college kids? Seriously, how the F did these people even get into a college, ANY college? These kids should be riding on the short bus. Our friends are missing, you know what we should do? Have sex or split up and go out into the dark alone and look for them. I've not seen such stupid charaters in a movie since Lloyd Christmas and Harry Dunne. But at least they were supposed to be dumb.

If it were just this movie, perhaps the stupidity of the victims could be forgiven but it's every single horror movie. It's like a monkey wrote these movies. Maybe I'm just expecting too much, but someone somewhere, must be able to write a truely scary movie! Please!