Saturday, October 11, 2008

Media review

I'm going to take a page from the book of John and do a quick runover of the books and movies that have entertained me lately.

Hot Fuzz- A
When I heard that it was a comedy/cop movie/action flick, I was thinking it would be like Naked Gun. I was pleasantly surprised. The action was funny, but not so over-the-top silly that it was not enjoyable as action.
I watched an edited version (it is rated R), and the people I watched with had seen the original release. They said it was missing some of their favorite jokes, but I thought it was just fine edited. Some movies seem to lose a lot in the editing process (like Gladiator), but this one was more along the Blues Brothers lines, where I was left completely satisfied with an edit.

Fight Club- D+
This movie I give a mercy D+ because there were a few enjoyable parts. The best of those is the very end. Those few good parts did not, however, manage to redeem the movie. The acting is pretty good, but not great. The plot was interesting, but when they finally revealed the huge surprise, it wasn't that satisfying. And the girl looks too much like Jonny Depp for me to think she's attractive. All in all, not a great movie.

Heroes- B+
Season three is so far not the abysmal failure that season two was, but it still just doesn't have the magic that season one had. I watch the new episodes, but I don't need them in the same way that I needed to keep watching season one. The jury is still out on the promicin shots, but I think they're kind of lame. In fact, the whole plot of season three seems a lot like The 4400. I really enjoyed The 4400, but I am not sure I want to see it redone by Heroes. I give it a B+ out of good faith, because they seem to be heading in the right direction (i.e., away from the flying dork and towards Nice Sylar).

And some books for good measure...
Finding Darwin's God- B
This was an all-around good book. It was written by Kenneth Miller, a devout Catholic and a scientist, and the basic premise is that it is OK to believe in both science and religion. I think that every person who wants to study a physical science and keep their faith should read it. To quote a small part of what he says,
From time to time I have to struggle to explain to my students, and even my colleagues, not only why Darwinian evolution does not preculde the existence of God, but how remarkably consistent evolution is with ... even the most traditional of Western religions.
So, it's a good book. I could keep quoting the parts of it that I liked, but I will spare you.

Mistborn: The Final Empire- A
If I could give this book something higher than an A, I would. It is the best nerd book I have read in a long time. It's like if The Lord of the Rings and Sneakers had a baby. Magic, intrigue, fighting, a great heist, and lots of other great stuff. Brandon Sanderson really pulled it off with this one.

Dune- C-
Maybe I had had it built up too much, or maybe it just wasn't my style, but I really thought Dune was boring. It was like the Leviticus of SciFi. It just didn't keep me interested. I'd say more specifically, but it was a few months ago, and not too memorable, so I'll leave it at that.

Well, that's enough for today. I may continue this thread some other time.

1 comment:

the House of Payne said...

Wait until you read the next 2 Mistborn books. They are even better. I think each one surpasses the last, but they also increase the value of the previous ones because they continue and deepen the story. Things you enjoyed before you enjoy even more later because they are made more meaningful by later events, and later revelations.

This is the opposite of what happened with the Harry Potter books, which at best were self-contained and episodic, and at worst were degenerative and contradictory. Curse you, Rowling!

I'm a Mormon.