from Sol III (aka Earth)

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    • Movie Review #1: The Hobbit, The Desolation of Smaug

      5 years ago


      I'm finally getting around to presenting my Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug review- wanted to let people get through the opening weekend without having my interpretation influence their experience. Gonna avoid the spoilers as much as I can, and rate and review ten areas that I feel are the most important to review. Material will be rated from zero to five stars.

      1. Plot and Plot Advancement: 4 Stars. We do see the continuing journeys and advancement to dealing with Smaug and the other evil forces in Middle Earth, I feel that in places, it is slightly sluggish, and in others, there is too much omission of important content, even though there is need for the revelation of content relative to the overall plot and the large content of Lord of the Rings, it is counter productive.

      2. Writing and Screenplay: 3.75 Stars. The writing did show they filmmakers were making the effort to keep the plot moving while retaining development of the plot and characters in such a way to keep people interested. But it does not meet expectations in some ways, as it inhibits aspects of character development and the background of characters. The action sequences really do help show the determination of a number of characters, while the drama scenes do explore, but not as fully as could have been, character thoughts and motivation, and some of their reaction to the plot feels somewhat stunted.

      3. Characters and Character Development: 3.5 Stars. I feel that this is one of the weak points of the film. Some characters have not enough time to have sufficient development, even for minor characters, which results in a weaker film overall. Some important, or introduced characters, feel hallower than they should, or don't seem to have the strength they did have in the first film, though we do get important plot devices in the presence of a number of the characters and their actions.

      4. Acting: 4.25 Stars. Even though there are deficiencies in the plot and the character development, the acting really is another stronger point. There is a certain amount of increased confidence and acting ability to make the characters more real, as well presentation. In places, there should have been improvements, or slight alterations to increase the feel of the performance.

      5. Set Design and Locations: 4.25 Stars. There are more cultural explorations of Middle Earth that explored and make the sets and locations much stronger, increasing their backstory presence. They create more of a background to the prior film and to Lord of the Rings; there are some areas that don't feel fully explored or developed, and this lessens the screen impact.

      6. Physical and CGI Effects: 4.75 Stars. Perhaps the strongest aspects of the film, but this area is not without the drawbacks of any sort. There are some areas that overload the senses. They do present a lot of material that help pull the film together, with much effort to realism.

      7. Sound Design: 4 Stars. Yet another aim for realism. Of course, being fantastic in nature, there are some aspects of this film that are up to the imagination, and have been filled, but there are areas where it could have been improved. Others, however, really did meet the needs of the film.

      8. Musical Score: 4.25 Stars. We have continued thematic buildup from the last film, as well as nods to the Lord of the Rings trilogy. There is need for some improvement, as at times there did seem to be a non harmonious nature between the score and the events on-screen.

      9. Editing: 3.75 Stars. At times pacing felt either to short, or slightly longer than needed for scenes, characters and relevant material. However, the editing allows one to help keep a nice degree of track on what is going on in each plot thread. With several separate threads to follow, it was nice to see- that is to say, break- from one thread to another to observe the multiple events of the story.

      10. Directing: 4 Stars. Overall, I feel that the director's direction was to get to the Lonely Mountain for the encounter with Smaug, and do it in such a way to keep the story involved for the audience without sacrificing quality. The strength of some decisions in some ways should have been reconsidered to help strengthen the movie overall.

      Overall Rating: 4.25 Stars.

      I will say that I hope that the director's cut/extended edition of this fill will fill in some content that had to be cut from the theatrical cut- I feel that they could have put in another twenty minutes worth of content to bring up the film to three hours instead of two hours and forty minutes. IT is my hope that a longer edition would help strengthen the film, lessen its weaknesses. I did grant Peter Jackson and company some 'leniency' insofar as that I knew that this particular film would be a difficult undertaking, story-wise, and had hopes for this film to be in ways better than the last, but do see that there are some areas that in my view could have been better.

    • Entry #14, 2013/12/12: The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug!

      5 years ago


      I have the good fortune of going to see the midnight premiere of The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug tonight- its my first time going to a midnight premiere. So yeah, in several hours, I'm going to be sitting in my local movie theater, seeing what movie magic Peter Jackson's conjured up. I've manged to get a bit of rest in before going to see it, so that tomorrow I'm not as groggy as heck after having my normal sleep routine so radically altered from normal routine. But I hope this event is awesome. I'll do my best not to spoil it for everyone after seeing it! Laters!

    • Entry #13, 2013/11/27 & 11/28: Thanksgiving

      5 years ago


      So, another Turkey Day has come, full of over-indulgence, family and now, apparently, the "new Black Friday" on Thursday. There's a rant that I'm gonna omit.

      Of course, going to be spending time with my family- we were suppose to have a turkey from one of the farms that we visited on the farm tour (we saw them on the spring farm tour as well as the fall tour- we ordered a turkey in the spring), but there was a screw up with the processing, and it couldn't be done in time. However, things are ok with a back-up bird already being pulled out from the freezer.

      What's everyone else doing?

    • Entry #12, 2013/10/20: Another Day Out- in the Country.

      5 years ago


      To make a second weekend of out-abouts, my mother and I went out today on a self-guided farm tour of some farms, wineries and similar facilities. We chose half of the eleven participating locations to visit- two farms, a retreat/specialty farm, an orchard and a winery. We spent over six hours out, and drove over 100 miles (160+ km for those of you on the metric system).

      Our first stop was at a farm that is a small, sustainable farm, with free range livestock (chicken, geese, horses, cows, pigs, ducks) and it was need to see their turkeys. Stop two was at the retreat/specialty farm, where were able to look at the herbs being grown, and learned that we could arrange a retreat to learn cooking efforts and other material- a refreshment form the pace of city life. Stop three was a goat dairy farm- we got to see the goats and kids, the place where the goats were milked (none were milked while we were there, because of the proprietor's system of milking). We got some goat cheese; we've gotten cheese from them before, so we know its good cheese.

      We took a break for lunch in one of the two towns the farms are scattered around, partly because it was lunch time and the other part was convenience to do so. It was about a half hour break- we stopped at the town's local Arby's. Got a nice philly meal, with curly fries.

      Then we got back on the road after having eaten and stretched, and we went to the orchard we had decided to visit. It was quite nice- seeing long row after row of apple trees- learned about an improved golden delicious- gonna have to check the name, don't have it on hand at this moment. So, we picked some apples, getting ten pounds worth (in weight), then went to visit the winery. It was getting late in our trip and in the day, so my mother and I stopped in long enough to get what we wanted- we knew what we wanted to get- and payed for them, and we went back on home.

      This whole trip of course was worth the money, time and gas- I did get photos, but I'll be posting what ones I feel are the best tomorrow, as I haven't gone through all of them yet. So, that was today's adventure- hope everyone else had a good weekend.

      2013/10/21 Update- Posted seven images from the trip in my image gallery here on site.

    • Entry #11, 2013/10/13: A Day Out.

      5 years ago


      I went out yesterday with my parents to our local Renaissance Festival event as a family things-to-do; there were times when we came together for a thing or two, but we were mostly on our individual tracks. Saw a number of artisans selling their crafts- didn't buy much of anything, because I didn't want to haul home a boat-load of stuff- it was experience I wanted to take home. I also had a bit food, watched some blacksmiths actually working in a small blacksmith shop, and went to some performances. One event I went to was a 10 bucks to get in, 21+ event with some low-brow entertainment, parts of which were lower brow than anticipated, but it was worth it because I got in some chat time with fellow attendees, got to see the Festival's King and Queen show up and got some beer. It was Guinness I had- hope that @BuckeyeDon and @Flynnt are pleased, cause they've been pimping out Guinness lately.

      As I was going about on the grounds throughout the time I was there, I saw some coolly dressed cosplayers besides the fair staff wandering around. I saw a decent number of pirates, including two guys dressed as Captain Jack Sparrow and Hector Barbossa respectively, both of whom I first saw only in passing cause I was on my way to an event, and the second time I ran into Barbossa, I was able to briefly talk to him. It wasn't long after that we left for the day. Got dinner, rested for a bit and watched @Myshu stream some Star Fox Adventures. Sorry, Myshu, I had to leave as you were dealing with the robots at the Volcano Force Point landing area- I was feeling tried from all the activities I had been doing.

    • Entry #10, 2013/09/11: Twelve Years Later

      5 years ago


      It's been twelve years since the Al-Qaeda attacks on WTC Twin Towers and the Pentagon, and of course Flight 93's crash into the field outside Shanksville, PA. There are many things we know, and even more we won't. It's still a powerful memory for me- a mix of shock, awe, and wonder about why this had occurred. I don't remember feeling any immediate anger, but there had to be some. This event is something that can never be erased from history, and something I'll always remember.

    • Entry#9, 2013/07/27: Caption This 1 Results

      5 years ago


      The Caption This 1 results are in!

      Right here is @DCLaxer06's submission.

      Right here is @BuckeyeDon's submission.

      And here's my submission.

    • Entry #8, 2013/07/24: Caption This

      5 years ago


      Firstly, credit needs to go to @Ember for inspiring me to do this, as well as some recent content from Achievement Hunter.
      Secondly, this is something that I don't anticipate doing often- once in a blue moon sort of thing.

      So, click here for my caption this- from AHWU 171. I'll post the best two or three in a few days.

    • Entry #7, 2013/07/18: RWBY Reaction.

      5 years ago


      Well, finally getting to see RWBY Ep 1 has shown that Monty and crew have got this well thought out. I will have to approach RWBY as I would any show: see a few episodes before voting yea or nay to follow. With it being RT, I'll likely follow the series- there seems to be a lot of good things waiting to be reveled.

      2013/07/20 Edit: After re-watching the episode several times, I'd have to say that most intriguing thing, after the need to see how Ruby and Yang will adapt to life at Beacon, would be the back-story. As someone who likes to know the details and history, this aspect would be the most interesting to me.

    • 5 years ago

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