Monthly Archives June 2008

Minor Site Updates

We’ve received some great feedback from Ethan’s post about things we can do to make the site better and we really appreciate it.  We are working on a site redesign, but that’s a fairly big task, so we’re doing little things right now. 

The first thing that can be noticed is that we now have a Contact Us page.  That will give you all the info you need to get in contact with us.  There, you’ll find our voicemail number, Skype voicemail info and basic e-mail stuff.

Secondly, I’ve finally added info in the About page for both Josh and Ethan.  This includes a brief blurb about them, their top 10 favorite movies of all time and how to get in contact with them.

I am working on getting some forums up and running.  I’ll make the location public once I get some anti-spambot stuff installed as well.  So, you can see that we’re working on getting things upgraded a bit.  It’s led to some columns not coming out yet, but don’t worry.  My list of stuff worth getting in the last few days of the Deep Discount sale will make you drool and make your wallet scream and bleed.

Please, feel free to contact any of us with suggestions as to how we can improve things around here.  This is a creative outlet for all of us that has the potential to become something more.  We all really are humbled that any of you spend your valuable free time listening to us or reading something we put up.  We want to keep you coming back for more, so let us know what we can do!  Unless we start making goo-gobs of cash that lets us all quit our day jobs, this will probably never be a major news site.  What we hope we’re doing is giving you intelligent discussion about film that’s fun and accessible.  We’re also going to be including more TV as well.

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George Carlin : 1937-2008

    Carlin had always been my favorite comedian. And as someone who's trying to break into the world of comedy, I always kept his work in mind when writing. Only one day could I hope to be as funny, dirty and relevant as he was.

Carlin was a genius of comedy that had a strong influence over everyone who followed him. His views on religion, politics, censorship and many other things were always biting funny but also true. If you've never heard his “Seven Dirty Words” bit, then do yourself a favor now.

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Ethan's Get Smart Review

 

    Ethan's Score : 6.5/10  

There have always been different kinds of comedies. There are the ones churned out by studios every summer that are reasonably funny, but nothing special. And then there are the ones that truly show a unique voice and blow us away. Get Smart falls into the former category. But I'm not saying it doesn't have any redeeming qualities. For the most part, it's pretty solid.

    What makes this an enjoyable movie is the cast. Particularly Steve Carrell. His excellent comic timing, improvisational skills and energy gives this film such a boost. Anne Hathaway is …..(drool)….did I just lose myself there? She has good chemistry with Carrell. And Alan Arkin and Dwayne Johnson are quite funny too.

I liked that the film tried to have an actual threatening villain and plot with high stakes. But it's not helped by bland direction and some spotty editing. A better visual style would have helped this film a lot. But really, it's an enjoyable movie. Just don't go in with super high expectations.

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SGR Episode 38 – Movie Catchup

Yeah, we watched a crapload of movies this week, so we decided to talk about them while Barry is off in Vegas.  And I would like to take this opportunity to apologize for apparently taking a bottle of Prozac before recording.  Seriously, I could be hosting a light rock radio show.  I’ll make sure to chug some Mountain Dew before next week’s show.

Full show notes will be up tomorrow, but in the meantime, you can learn more about the Can’t Stop the Serenity screenings.  Also, a big shoutout goes to the Mile High Browncoats for putting on a great event!  We had a great time and only regret being too tired to make the Shindig after the screening.

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What can we do to make this site huge?

I’ve been pondering about this over the last few days.  What can we do to get more readers? I mean, we love every single one of you reading this right now. But still, how can we get even more? How can we get more attention? I would love suggestions. I will never rest until I can get everyone on this site press passes to Comic-Con. But we need your help.

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Marc Lougee Writes About Making Stop Motion On A Budget

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Good friend to the site, Marc Lougee, has somehow found time between screening The Pit and the Pendulum all over the world and finalizing the DVD release to write a really interesting article about the setup he used in the making of Pit.  He was able to put the entire rig together, including the PC, lens, cameras and everything for less than $2400.  That is just crazy awesome.  Anyway, it’s a very worthwhile read and you can check it out here.

Also, please take some time to read his tribute to Stan Winston.  He shares a pretty funny story and it’s quite touching.

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DVD Picks for 6-17-08

Sorry this is a day or so late.  Life just got in the way.  Anyway, on with this week’s recommendations, but I’m going to put the deal of the day (as opposed to the week) up before the jump!

Deal Of the Week:

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Deadwood Complete Series for $89.99 with free shipping at Amazon

I put this first simply because Amazon is running some really good Gold Box deals this week.  Today, you can get gritty HBO western for an insanely good deal.  Even with their 20% off sales going on, this set would run you $180.22 at DVD Planet and $121.8 at Deep Discount.  This is a killer sale.  If other sets come up at deals this good throughout the week, I’ll update the site.

On to this week’s picks!

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Remembering Stan Winston

Last August, Screen Geek Josh and I were wandering the endless corridors of Comic Con and we ran into Stan Winston. This was my first time at Comic Con and, in fact, it was during my first couple of hours there that, after growing glassy-eyed with geeky overkill, endless booths, movie promos and fanboy paraphernalia galore, Josh and I happened to spot the Skinwalkers promotion. In front of a tall booth (hidden by a black curtain and containing a mock-up of the film’s monster, for the brave who peeked inside) sat a friendly, older man with a lean, white beard and unassuming glasses. I said to Josh, “That’s Stan Winston!” I immediately began to bore Josh with everything I knew about Winston and Josh, keeping his cool, matter of factly asked me, “are you going to talk to him?” I said, “I can’t!” I was so taken aback by seeing him, I told Josh I needed a minute to come up with something to say, perhaps buy something for him to sign, and maybe ask him what the status of Jurassic Park IV was. We walked around the convention, came back a few minutes later and found Mr. Winston swamped with fans. I thought, oh well, I’ll get a chance to talk to him later. I never did.

Four years ago, I had the privilege of meeting Lance Henriksen. I told him that I loved his performance in Pumpkinhead; his eyes lit up and he said, “Thanks! You know, that was Stan Winston’s first film as a director!” It’s very telling that, of all the things he could have said about that film, the first thing that came to mind was Stan Winston.

Winston had that effect on actors, filmmakers and his countless fans. They LOVED him. He had a reputation as an approachable, kind and effortlessly inventive genius who loved movies as much as the work he put into them.

This was a man who made movie magic, time and time again. His work as a visual effects creator, designer and make-up artist are among the most iconic and convincing in film history. His contributions to The Terminator, Jurassic Park, Aliens, Batman Returns, A.I., Terminator 2 and Interview With the Vampire are classic and astonishing. Even the work he did on bad films, like The Island of Dr. Moreau, Heartbeeps, The Wiz, Invaders From Mars and Pearl Harbor, is so incredible, it makes the films worth seeing, if only to view his work (particularly Dr. Moreau, which has some of the best make-up I’ve ever seen).

Winston’s extensive filmography has titles that make you feel like you’re a kid and cause one to smile sheepishly: Galaxy Quest, Edward Scissorhands, Congo, Starman, Mousehunt, and The Monster Squad– all have Stan Winston's fingerprints on them.

I now know exactly what I should have said to Mr. Winston; I simply should have walked up to him, shook his hand and said, “Thank You”.

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Updated! ScreenGeeks Recieves Three Copies of The Gotham Times!

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I literally just opened the envelope containing these about five minutes ago, so I haven't had a chance to read it yet, but I'll make a bit of an overview as to the stories in the paper, but we received three copies of Issue #3 of The Gotham Times at SG headquarters today!  No, this isn't for me to gloat…ok, maybe just a little.  Never fear, though, we're going to be distributing two of these copies.  One will be auctioned off this week or next week with 100% of the proceeds going to benefit Child's Play.  As for the other copy, well…we're not sure quite yet. 

Edit:  Hit the jump for info as to what's in the issue.  Hit the link above if you want to read for yourself, or I've done a quick rundown on the highlights.

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Stan Winston : 1946-2008

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    One of the most revolutionary figures in the history of special effects and make-up. His groundbreaking work on The Terminator, Aliens, Jurassic Park and many other films blew me away growing up. If you've read his book (which I received for Christmas '06) then you will know that he was not only a genius of film, but a warm-hearted and loving man. He will be greatly missed.

    HTTP://FASTHOMEWORKK.COM
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