Oh Shit! The person who started the trend of self-absorbed year in review threads has come to spread his knowledge!
2012 has come to end, we have us a darkie president for four more years and we were not killed by Mayans, Aliens, Nuclear Wars, Nostradamus, racist redneck riots or Justin Beiber. I'm slightly disappointed to be honest. I say we start a fourth reich and feed all the assholes who tried to scare us with that shit for the past FIVE FUCKING YEARS to zee ovens.
So I thought I'd add something other than me picking my favorites from delving into metal's rich history. The problem is when you are doing that,combined with a) not having a car, and b) finishing up college (yes I actually graduated this winter) you don't have much time for anything else. I saw 1 new movie and played 1 new video game. Granted the video game is LONG but christ, the average movie goer sees 8.5 movies a year. Part of the problem with that is I mishear a lot of dialogue and after a while I get frustrated cos I feel like I missed something very important.
I actually would like to assemble something resembling a top 10 new music list, but I need to do some last minute scouting first. In the meantime, let's briefly talk about the one movie I saw this year:
Who new that the payoff for a four year marketing campaign for Marvel would not only turn out to be good, but one of the funniest movies ever made? People in the theatre were laughing their asses off to this like it was Austin Powers The Spy Who Shagged Me. The even stranger thing is, the lines on their own are stupid as hell, yet even I was laughing right along with everybody! Thor saying "He's adopted"? Samuel L Jackson going "Stupid-ass decision" like a thousand second-rate black comedians? But by Asgard, it fucking worked! Jackson's curse aside, the humor was 99% PG and all brilliant situational comedy. The even stranger thing is I am not even remotely a comic book fan, (and I know much, much less about Joss Whedon) I just wanted to see exactly how big bloated and long this thing would turn out to be. What I thought was going to be a 5 hour fan fic central turned out to be a just shy of 2 and a half hours and I can't really think of anything to chop out. I give Robert Downey Jr. a lot of credit for actually taking a backseat to let everyone shine. The first two Iron Man movies were classics simply by him mugging for the camera so the fact that he actually shows that restraint is a testament to his acting. Brilliant film and a giant fuck you to Dark Knight's super serious sensibilities that seemed to plague comic movie discussion from 2008-09 (a MASSIVE backlash for that movie is coming and Christopher Nolan is going to hang at the gallows, mark my words.) Whenever AFI makes their top 10 "awesome moments in film" list, Loki starting up a speech about not being bullied only to be smashed about by the Hulk will make the top 5. But if the whole damn thing isn't recognized as a classic now, it will be by this time next year.
While the movie did have some funny moments, it's hardly one of the funniest movies ever made. Joss Whedon always knows how to add humor in the right spots though.
Ok, so the last class I took was a class on the films of Golden Age director Billy Wilder. I was treated to see most of the classics (The Apartment, Double Indemnity, Sunset Boulevard etc.), and for the most part I liked a lot of his work (though I will say that his cynical dramas hold up way better than his comedies do. Some Like It Hot? Wouldn't even put it in the top 10. But my favorite of his films (that I watched) is a rather unusual one:
Wouldn't be surprised if even Brad hasn't seen this movie. The funny thing is, the movie was marketed on the last 15 minutes of twists or so (which was actually "spoiled" for me in class since that wasn't one of the required screenings. I had to watch the whole thing for an essay on my own), but to me I could watch this just for Charles Laughton being a crotchety old dick! Take the most rugged, whiskey drinking, does not give one iota of a fuck for his well being cop you can find and make him a strangely by-the-book yet passionately involved defense lawyer in Britain (complete with a damn wig) and you get Sir William Robart, who is as entertaining as they come for 50's british film. Laughton spends all time outside of a murder case trying to prove his terrified client innocent telling any and all nurses, advisors and general passerbys to go piss up a rope and fuckin A is it awesome. But of course, any real film snob will tell you that this movie goes in the books for an awesome performance by golden age actress Marlene Dietrich. Kinda sad, this play adaptation was supposed to be a launching pad for Tyrone Power and his two co-stars steal the show right out from under him. If you love yourself some courtroom films, well, you've probably seen this already. If you haven't yet, move it to the top of your list pronto!
Silver Medal: Double Indemnity (want to know where 'film noir' came from? it came from here)
Bronze Medal: Ace In The Hole
'm actually kind of offended at Nintendo's lassies faire attitude towards this game. This game should be so overexposed, it's secrets should be the next Aerith dies or Shiek is Zelda to the point where I should almost hate it. Nintendo had the next Chrono Trigger on their hands, and nobody that isn't an internet journalist has said anything about this game. Even the idiots at IGN think Last Story is a better game than this. Anyways, in terms of explaining this game, even without going into the radically different overworked layout, the story is basically two likable chums witness their hometown get pillaged by a race of machines and set out on a mission of genocidal revenge. That's it, but what starts out as a simple plot for something that sounds like The Cinema Snob would review ever so slowly turns into this beautifully compelling story about compassion, will, and even a deeply complex (though likely unintentional), yet subtle allegory about the relationship between mankind and God. As amazing as this game is, if a sequel comes out I'll be kind of pissed because there really isn't anywhere for this story to go other than "and they all lived happily ever after" because it would royally fuck up the dynamic of the game!
There are five things that make this game work: 1) An excellent real-time combat system that automatically auto attacks while also having special attacks called arts (which are the spells/techs of this game if you will). 2) The execution of the story telling. It's not melodramatic, but rather the game gives you little mysteries you can't wait to solve and once it is, about two more open up. 3) Gorgeous, Gorgeous set pieces. Uncharted doesn't have shit on this game. 4) An excellent soundtrack. 5) A cast of relatable characters with a richness I haven't seen since the days of Final Fantasy 6. This game is basically one giant gumbo of all the great RPGs you loved on the Super Nintendo: There's bits of Secret of Mana, bits of Super Mario RPG, bits of Final Fantasy IV and VI, Chrono Trigger of course, and there's even just a tasteful pinch of Metal Gear Solid in terms of the whams and twists this game has to offer (though with none Kojima's fucktarded trolling).
Not only is this the best game for the Wii, this is the best thing Nintendo's put out since Goldeneye for the N64. Not that they would have you know about it. Look, I know we're all supposed to hate GameStop, and the fact that this is exclusive to that franchise is a blemish on this otherwise perfect game, but please, I beg you, play this game, and tell all your friends to play this game, even if they aren't JRPG fans. Hell I'm not much of a JRPG person, I only bought this because I thought Operation Rainfall was kind of cute, and I thought that Nintendo choosing to go through with it was an obligation to buy it, and it was the greatest video-game decision I've ever made.
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