Wednesday, June 23, 2010

An open letter to *ahem* Fuck you. Seriously, take a large black dildo and pound it up your brown eye with a rubber mallet. Now I’m not a paying member of the site, if I were you can bet that this letter would be sent to someone there directly. As it is, this is a free service that I’m using as a simple amusement to help pass the time in my boring day, but I have a serious bone to pick with the way things are run over there. I am sick and tired of posting legitimate mistakes, only to have some pedantic asshole post a nonsense correction for it. Making up a possible set of circumstances that could explain away a mistake is not a correction! You could do that for every mistake if you really tried. The point of the correction system on the site is to catch non-mistakes that somehow make it through the rigorous submission process and are posted to the site. Honestly, if I were a paying member of the site, I think I would take umbrage with the fact that I’m paying for a service that is partially being outsourced to the Internet public for free, namely quality control. There is a two page list of rules that you have to read before you can submit a mistake, but as far as I know there are no guidelines for submitting a correction. There’s no appeal option, there’s no open dialogue, there’s no place to post a rebuttal and assert your opinion that the mistake you posted is legitimate. Let me show you what I’m talking about here. Here is the mistake that I posted for “Kick-Ass”, followed in brackets by the correction.

When Kick-Ass called Big Daddy and Hit Girl for help, they leave behind their hot cocoa. After Hit Girl rescues Kick-Ass and they return to their house, Hit Girl looks at the two mugs of hot cocoa and we can see the marshmallows floating in both cups. Considering the amount of time elapsed, those marshmallows should have been melted. [Not so. We don't know how hot the drinks were in the first place, and by virtue of the fact the drinks would be cooling down means the marshmallows never get to melt.]

Fuck. You. We don’t know how hot the drinks were? Are you fucking kidding me? It’s called hot chocolate, something tells me that it’s probably hot. Have you ever had a cup of hot chocolate with marshmallows? They melt ridiculously fast. Yes, the drinks are cooling off, but the marshmallows would have melted way before that even started to happen. And this is just one example, I’ve had other mistakes posted that have gotten equally ridiculous corrections. The point is, in a movie, there are certain simple assumptions that can be made. For example, hot chocolate is hot. And saying ‘Well, maybe it wasn’t hot’ is not a correction, it’s a possible explanation that has no facts in the movie to support it.

There, I just needed to get that off my chest. Thank you.

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Fairly Topical Movie Review: "Toy Story 3"

So as those of you who know me already know, I’m leaving my current job at the end of the month and I’m going to be spending the summer with my daughter. As such, my blog entries are likely to be even more infrequent (if that’s even possible), but thanks to a lot of movie theaters doing a free summer movie program for kids, you can expect a few ‘Way Too Late’ reviews of kids movies. And maybe a couple of newer ones as well, including the subject of today’s post of course. Father’s Day weekend was pretty hectic in the Cyberbeast house, what with my daughter being sick, but we did manage to make a trip to the theater and it was well worth it.

Toy Story 3 is all about what happens to toys when their owners grow up. Andy is 17 now and off to college, and the gang are worried about what will become of them. Will they be stored in the attic, or thrown away. At its heart, it’s a story about loyalty and friendship, and it delivers on an emotional level in a way that most live action dramas only wish they could. We all remember what it was like to be a kid and have an emotional attachment to your favorite toys, and the feeling of growing up and having to let go of that, even if in our hearts it’s not something that we really want to do.

Even after three turns, the basic premise of a world where all of our childhood toys could walk and talk whenever we weren’t looking still hasn’t gotten old. This time out the toys end up in a daycare center that at first seems like a paradise, but they soon discover is really a prison. They’re locked in the toddler room, to be battered and abused by kids that aren’t age-appropriate to play with them properly. Woody, ever loyal to Andy is trying to find his way back to his owner when he’s picked up by a little girl named Bonnie and taken home with her, where she plays with him along with her other toys. He eventually learns of his friends’ predicament and returns to the daycare center to break them out. The prison break sequence has some of the best, funniest parts of the movie, along with Bonnie’s play time. There’s something about those playing scenes with Bonnie, and the opening sequence with Andy, that just rings true of what a child’s imagination is really like.

The film is filled with so many great scenes, including the opening action scene which shows Andy playing with them from the perspective of his imagination. There are a lot of funny moments, a lot of great character stuff, and a lot of great performances from the cast of the first two movies, as well as newcomers to the cast Ned Beatty, Michael Keaton and Jeff Garlin. I know that a lot of people love making lists of their favorite Pixar movies, and arguing over which ones are better than others, but I think that Toy Story 3 is going to be at the top of those lists pretty consistently with very little argument. It’s not just a great kids movie, it’s a great movie.

My Netflix Rating: Five out of Five Stars