Star Wars: Episode IV – A New Hope

Is there a better way to spend the last couple of days of the year rather than doing things that you wanted to do for a long time now? Certainly not. That’s why I rented the three Star Wars episodes that came out long time ago. I was going to fill in these blanks in my movie watching education for some time, but never managed. Today I started with “Star Wars: Episode IV – A New Hope“.

Of course it is not as easy going and exciting to watch as many nowadays movies, but it was still shocking and impressing. With some scenes I couldn’t believe my eyes. Not many people dare to repeat things today that George Lucas did back in 1977. Excellent special effects, costumes, ideas, and technological innovations.

The movie is worth every second of the time. Digital remastering of the DVD did it some good too. I cannot imagine what would have happened to me if I watched this in the cinema back than… when it was still 1 year before I was born! :)

9 out of 10. Watch it if you haven’t done so yet.

Control

One of Martin’s special skills is finding totally unknown and burried movies, which are actually good. Today I’ve got one of those films from him – “Control“. It is one of the most burried movies that I have ever seen. There is no poster on IMDB, no rating (awaiting 5 votes), there are no DVDs or videos at Amazon. Google search for images does not come up with anything useful either. I guess there are many films that are hidden deep under. But this one has a really nice DVD cover and excellent cast (Ray Liotta, Willem Dafoe, Kathleen Robertson) printed on top of it.

The film itself is interesting, with nice plot twists, excellent acting and some good soundtrack. I wish there was more action and suspense to it, but it was good even as it was. I also liked how nicely the movie raised a whole bunch of phylosophical issues without going too deep into them.

Being one of the first people voting for this movie, I’ll give it a good 8 out of 10 (7.5 actually, but wha the heck!).

Straight Shooter

I’ve just watched the “Straigth Shooter” on DVD. There is something strange about this film. It looks and feels like something of mid-70s. Picture quality, sound, choice of music compositions, photography, camera work, lights, and everything. Even the story and character development are very 70-ish. Never-the-less, the film was done in 1999.

And that puts me in the situation where I have to decide if I liked it or not. For the measures of 70-ies this film is very good. It is dynamic, interesting, and has good special effects. On the other hand, as a movie made in 1999 it sucks big time. It was supposed to be an action and a war crime with special ops and stuff, but according to today’s standards it is very slow and boring without much to look at.

Until someone will prove to me that it is a really old film or explain to me what was so great about making a movie that was 30 years late, I’ll give it a 5 out of 10.

Follow-up on Asian earthquake and tsunami

Slashdot has a couple of posts here and here that follow the recent post on huge earthquake and tsunami in Asia.

Many high traffic sites, such as Google and Amazon link from their front pages to information for those who wish to donate. There is also more information and coverage at tsunamihelp.blogspot.com/.

If you want to get a better idea of what happened, than watch the videos from this site and this site. I have mirrored them for your convenience.

Surprised with the clinic

Yesterday, Olga and I went for the regular check to the caretaker. After than we went (finally!) to see the clinic where Olga will be taken care of when the time for labour and delivery will come. And we were so surprised! It was unbelievable.

Limassol clinic is a small two or three floor building not too far from our house. It looks like any other building in the area. But it is inside that shocked us. There are not to many 4-star hotels in Limassol which feel that good. Clean and tidy, cozy, with paintings and plants were all over the place. Excellent furniture and a touch of style to everything. All rooms have a single bed, shower, couch and a couple of armchairs, TV, fridge and anything you could with for. Newly born babies can stay either in the rooms with their mothers or in a separate place. There is also a VIP lounge. It is a huge two-room space with more furniture and comforty items.

And there was no this hospital smell anywhere. I was really shocked.

When I saw all of this beauty and excellence I started to prepare myself for a bloated bill with at least 4 digits in it. It turned out that the whole thing costs almost twice as cheap as I was imagining it before seeing the hospital. 650 CYP includes labour and delivery, with 3 days stay in the clinic. This is a very reasonable price. If it is not, at least I am satisfied with it.

Anyway, now we are looking forward for when the time is right. The baby is doing fine. It is about 1.7 kilograms now. All the tests look OK, ultrasound doesn’t show any problems and the heartbeat sounds clean and good. We will be monitoring the progress even more often with the caretaker now – once every two weeks instead of once a month.

My Big Fat Greek Wedding

Somehow Olga managed not to see “My Big Fat Greek Wedding“, so we had to rent it and watch it. I’ve seen it before in the cinema, but since that was before my blogging times, I decided to post about it.

The film is a nice comedy about the wedding of Greek woman to a Jewish man. From what I have seen, cultural differences are a good source of humor and this film does exploit this resource to a good extent. It doesn’t go into showing too much or explaining everything. It just provides a number of funny episodes and templates. If you get them – good for you, if not – there are more.

Good mix of acting, traditional music, languages, and fun – deserves a 7 out of 10 in my book. :)

Cheats

Cheats” was on TV.

I don’t know why I never heard of it, but this is one excellent film. Originally, I think, it was aimed at teenagers, but it is good for a much wider audience. If you have ever cheated in school or college, or if you just knew someone who did, you even if you just went to school or college, or just passed one by, or wanted to, or seen one on the picture – you’ll like it. It has plenty of good humour, interesting story, suspense, photography, music, and rock-n-roll spirit. And you can watch it more than once.

Amazing film. 8 out of 10. Make it 9 out of 10.

Martial arts, stunt performers, and stunt coordinators

While looking up the info on Xin Xin Xiong I came across a really good resource about martial arts, stunt performers and coordinators. It features pictures, biographies, filmographies and all sorts of useful information about people who have to do some much for many to enjoy so little.

All this site needs is a complete redesign…

Movie thoughts

Olga and I went to Pizza Hut for dinner today. While eating and (me) having a couple of pints, we talked about movies. We both think I watch a lot of them and that kind of stimulates me (or us) to talk about movies. So we talked (read: everything below is a product of one somewhat short dialogue and no Internet research what-so-ever)…

Continue reading “Movie thoughts”