Phaedrus' Street Crew
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About Roderick

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    Bad Brain's Intern(TM)
  • Birthday 08/12/83

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  1. mother!

    It's still a thing in the Netherlands. The Pathé line of cinemas has done away with breaks, which I prefer (for movies <2hr), but Vue (formerly JT) and others still have them. It's a bit of an interruption most of the time, but you get used to it and it's nice to at least be able to go to the toilet and get some refreshments. For mother! it didn't feel particularly like respite. I had steeled myself especially for the second half, so I knew I was going into heavier territory after. The films breaks up exactly in between the two major visits to the house. In the second half we (unfortunately) no longer see Harris of Pfeiffer, and it's when Lawrence gets preggers. I prefer the first half, where it's more 'death by a thousand cuts' than one big wallop of misery.
  2. mother!

    Oh yes, Bardem is absolutely the worst to her. He is continuously going behind her back and ignoring her wishes when he's inviting people over. Lawrence may annoyingly never dig her heels in the sand (possibly because she's so completely ineffectual at getting anyone to listen to her, which in fact does resonate with some feeling of powerlessness inside me), but her husband should absolutely take her needs and desires into account. Possibly my favorite thing about mother! is how Ed Harris and Michelle Pfeiffer suddenly become like little children after breaking Bardem's little doodad. They get apologetic and churlish and sulk. Part of why I wanted to see this movie was the wildly diverging reactions to it. My friend was also highly entranced and unnerved by the film, while I was totally the only one in the theater chuckling. An elderly couple walked out during the break. These sort of divisive experiences are usually worthwhile, since they have something real on offer, something that may do something with you or not, but at least they're not unisexually appealing, committeed-to-death entertainment.
  3. Stargate

    I was never into Stargate, and whenever I saw shards of the show on tv, it was Richard Dean Anderson not being MacGyver and people with snake heads jumping through shrubs. Honestly, it always looked a little cheap compared to Star Trek TNG or other concurrent shows. But I figured that if so many people liked/loved it, it must have some qualities. A few years ago I watched the movie for the first time since my childhood and it was complete scifi schlock. I was kinda shocked by how few ideas there were. I was expecting bombastic world building, but most of it is just setting for action set pieces. It didn't feel coherent or all that interesting. I'm sure the show has a lot more going for it though. It has Teal'c! Whom I know to be a character!
  4. mother!

    Alright, let's talk about mother!, the new Darren Aronofsky film. Which I at first was hesitant to see, because I had heard people being shocked and upset about it, and I generally dislike upsetting films. Then again, Aronofsky is responsible for one of my favorite films, The Fountain, so I felt I had to at least give it a try. With some trepidation I entered the cinema yesterday, ready to quite possibly walk out at the sight of - well, I had already spoiled myself for the big shock at the end, which was the only way I could ever steel myself to watch it. I was prepared. Then it turns out to be a comedy. Well, probably not deliberately so. I facetiously texted this to a movie-loving friend: mother! - a comedy film about how introverted people feel at crowded parties I appreciate mother!. I want to see it again. It's not a good film per se, it's kind of a big mess. By which I mean: some performances are so good, some are so bad, and the whole thing feels like a big budget student film trying to be Meaningful(TM). It is serious about shocking you and disturbing you, but the reason it's a comedy is because of Jennifer Lawrence. I have nothing against her, but she is almost comically miscast in what is essentially a really difficult part. Her character is constantly reacting to what other people do, keeping her feelings inside, or freaking out. But when Lawrence gazes at the camera blankly, unlike say Javier Bardem, there's nothing there. Nothing happening. And when she's screaming, she unfortunately tends to lose her voice and all that comes out is awkward squeals. You need someone there that you believe has so much inner turmoil going on inside when all they do is stare in front of them. I feel sorry for the actress, but part of the reason mother! made me laugh out loud multiple times is how un-sorry I felt for the character. And it's unfair too. Lawrence has to go up against awesome actors like Ed Harris, Bardem and Michelle Pfeiffer, who each get to play characters that are alive and joyful and weird in ways that Lawrence's is not. So begins a game where she is taunted over and over by these horrible home invaders. And it's often hilarious because Lawrence cares so deeply about all of it. 'Hey! You can't come in here!' is her signature line. 'Don't sit on that sink, it's not secured.' In contrast to Bardem, who is hilariously shrugging everything off. 'It's just stuff, we can buy new!' he says. He keeps apologizing, even when, well, the end thing happens. The end. It's pandemonium taken a little too far. The movie kinda lost me there for a while, as the house devolves into a warzone and a church. It was more fun when the whole thing was about social micro-transgressions wrought upon an ever-suffering Lawrence. Then again, when it happens, it's so suggestive and bizarre that I was more marvelling at its weirdness than grossed out. It's not gross, not really. I feel little need to delve into the symbolism of the film, in the way that I needed to figure out what was going on in The Fountain. mother! is so on the nose with everything it does, it robs itself of mystery, strangely. There's even a throbbing heart in the house shrivelling up and I swear that is straight out of my own graduation film at art school. I almost couldn't believe I saw Aronofsky do it in his film. So, yeah, it's really not his best film, or even 'good'. But there's so much in there that's worth seeing. Harris and Pfeiffer and Bardem! Superb whenever they're on. You'll laugh, if you've got my inclinations.
  5. Modest Tech: The NX Generation (Nintendo Switch)

    Ah yes, it boggles the mind why they used such an ugly font for the text balloons. It looks out of sync with the rest of the graphic design. Now I know we're all a bunch of typeface lovers here, but damn if it doesn't add a lot to the experience. As for teams, I notice that I'm so tuned into the Mario/Rabbid Peach/Rabbit Luigi mashup that I hardly ever switch. Sometimes Luigi Actual joins in lieu of Rabbid Peach, but that's it. There's just never a good incentive to try out the others. Whenever I do give it a go, with Rabbid Mario for instance, it just doesn't feel quite right and I switch back to my original powerhouse combo. And yeah, before playing I read some reviews that spoke of a difficulty spike, but that really never came. It's a pretty easy game. Fourth world now, and I'm still quite effortlessly getting perfect scores.
  6. Meanwhile, I've entered season 3 of TNG and by golly, it's getting good now. Gone are the days of serviceable but also kinda quaint plots. Every episode so far has delivered. It's way more cinematic and urgent now. Including a guest appearance by Babylon 5's Andreas Katsulas as a Romulan! I'll get to Discovery in about three years from now, give and take.
  7. Modest Tech: The NX Generation (Nintendo Switch)

    Mario + Rabbids: Kingdom Battle
  8. Modest Tech: The NX Generation (Nintendo Switch)

    Oh yeah, that does remind me that the Xenoblade 2 voice acting from that Direct was atrocious. Hopefully there's a Japanese option.
  9. Modest Tech: The NX Generation (Nintendo Switch)

    Here in the Netherlands the Nintendo Direct aired at exactly midnight, giving it a special, magical feeling. Then followed 45 minutes of craziness and commercials! Xenoblade Chronicles 2 was indeed baffling. I just couldn't parse anything they were saying. After the instructive way Arms and Splatoon were laid bare, this was a hot mess. Still, I could see the fun bits in between all the tiresome exposition of who battles what and how. Apart from that, stand-out moments for me were Skyrim (I DO NOT CARE, I WANT SKYRIM) and just seeing Koizumi-san, who is great. Pokémon was really rather lackluster, wasn't it? Ultra Sun and Ultra Moon just seem not that interesting. And Super Mario Odyssey continues to be something I will 100% buy and play, and probably enjoy the heck out of, but seeing footage for this game just never really works for me. I see it and think: those environments look a little too open for fun travel, or those challenges feel more like a chore than fun... and I know it's probably not that way, but I can't for the life of me shake that feeling.
  10. Modest Tech: The NX Generation (Nintendo Switch)

    So Suda51 of Killer7 fame is making a sequel to his No More Heroes franchise (last seen on the Wii), called Travis Strikes Again. Nintendolife just published an interview they did with him and it is outrageous. Just try to figure out what the hell this game will be, going from his words! He also has this choice piece of advice for the young generation that may have missed his Wii titles: "Then go to town and rub one out [gestures suggestively] and really get into the game!"
  11. I believe Crysis 3 is actually pretty good, so maybe just skip the second one?
  12. That's a coincidence, just this morning I started the day with an hour-long retrospective on the Crysis series [and why it's not particularly great] :
  13. So basically your experience is that of Spies Like Us. I had a similar experience playing COD:BLOPS2 last year. I thought it would look and play way better than it did, since all I ever heard of Call of Duty was that it was so polished and big budget. Not that it was bad, mind, just not as amazingly mind blown as I'd been lead to believe.
  14. Modest Tech: The NX Generation (Nintendo Switch)

    Beat the first world! Fun boss fight. Am excited to return to Secret Gardens to find all the hidden stuff now.
  15. Modest Tech: The NX Generation (Nintendo Switch)

    Ah yes, but Rabbid Peach's turret costs 20 points to get and at that point you only have 10! So I went with Luigi's to at least explore that mechanic. The grou[ heal I think will be really invaluable later on in the game. And since there's no level upping to be had, you can switch out character at will if things aren't going your way.