The Greatest Movie Ever?

January 16, 2008 at 1:54 pm (Horror, Humor, Movies)

Yes, I have now added a new film to my list of “the greatest movies of all time.” But I warn you in advance, it’s no Casablanca. Hot Fuzz, written by and starring Simon Pegg (the guy from Shaun of the Dead), should be on the wish lists of anyone who claims to like mystery, horror, comedy and absurdly-over-the-top action (really, all four are best, but if you score at least three, it’s worth looking into). It is essentially three movies in one: A creepy mystery, a hard-boiled action thriller, and a brilliant comedy that skewers both genres through and through. And surprisingly, it actually manages to succeed at all three. Read the rest of this entry »

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A Little Night Music…

January 16, 2008 at 1:40 pm (Horror, Movies, Music)

As most of you probably know, I have something of a fascination with horror movies, literature, etc. I don’t like slasher movies, but I do love the macabre, the creepy and the weird. One of the things that I’ve been thinking about a lot lately is how music relates to the story being told. What is it that makes a piece of music scary? Looking through my (admittedly limited) collection of classical music, for example, virtually all of the pieces named after evil spirits (and there are quite a few) are actually up-tempo, enjoyable pieces, and not particularly scary. This makes sense, inasmuch as the musicians at the time certainly weren’t trying to terrify their audience. Nonetheless, I’ve always felt a little disappointed by those pieces. Read the rest of this entry »

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New Year’s Resolved

January 3, 2008 at 9:42 pm (Dissertation, General, Writing)

Although most of you will find this hard to believe, I am my own harshest critic. Although I might wax publicly about how awesome I am, I spend (and always have spent, at least since I was a teenager) a significant portion of my waking hours depressed, because I feel that I do not measure up against some internal yardstick. Usually, the measure at which I fail is discipline, inasmuch as I haven’t yet completed my dissertation, even though I’m 30 and ought to be done already and getting on with my life, and why can’t I just buckle down for eight hours a day like everyone says I’m supposed to, and… Well, you get the idea. I’m like that about everything that I try doing: Languages, school, writing, art, cooking, etc. I’ve always had a short attention span, and that makes it hard to get anywhere with a specific project. Read the rest of this entry »

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