Warning # 1: by reading this, you might die of chronic boredom.
Warning # 2: it will be infested with spoilers.
Warning # 3: my stupid opinions are just that – stupid opinions. If at any point they seem patronizing, then… what? They are stupid opinions. Just ignore them and move on.

In this installment: Religion, death and apocalyptic events invade this blog as I rant about John Safran’s awesome silliness, Angels & Demons doesn’t suck as much as I thought it would, TV gives us yet another tale of meteors crapping all over earth, and So You Think You Can Dance nearly bores me to death but manages to redeem itself in the end.


OMG, another Michael Jackson internet tribute?
Despite not caring much about MJ as a person or as a celebrity, and regardless of the horribly insensitive comment I made about his nose on the day of his death, the man made great music and was one of the most influential personalities to the world of dance. So here is my all time favorite video of his (which corresponds to my all time favorite song of his), one I consider a piece of modern art more than a music video. No, it is not Thriller:

About the media coverage of MJ and Farrah Fawcett’s death, I’ve found it all a bit too inappropriately morbid. I mean, sure it is news worthy, but there should be a limit to the amount of coverage, especially from channels like E (or E!), if only to give MJ’s family some peaceful time to mourn.
 
I’d like to refer you to the latest Televised Revolution podcast. Televised Revolution is a radio show for Brisbane’s community radio 4ZZZ, dedicated to all things TV. In their latest podcast, they got on bit of a heated discussion about MJ’s death, Farrah’s death, the ensuing paranoia created on the internet to generate more traffic for some websites, and the lack of source confirmation from some media outlets. It’s very interesting:
 
Televised Revolution podcast #72


OMG, it’s another meteor movie: Impact
This is actually a miniseries, a bastard child of Armagedon and the Sci Fi TV movie Earthstorm.

So how similar are Impact and Earthstorm? Read on and see if you agree with me:

Story
Impact: A meteor hits the moon, creating a huge crack on its surface, altering its orbit and putting it in a collision path towards Earth. A group of scientists are recruited to come up with a plan to save our precious Earth. In the end, they decide that magnetizing the moon’s core is the way to salvation.

Earthstorm: A meteor hits the moon, creating a huge crack on its surface, so deep that once the moon completely splits in two, the smaller segment will go on a collision path towards Earth. A group of scientist and demolition experts are recruited to come up with a plan to save our precious Earth. In the end, they decide that magnetizing the moon’s core is the way to salvation.

Characters
Impact: A female scientist is assigned as head of the team. She then requests the services of the main male character, a scientist, father of two whose wife has recently passed away, because he is the best at what he does. The main male character reluctantly accepts to go on the space mission to magnetize the moon. Also, the chief military advisor to the president is a complete asshole until he’s forced to accept his mistakes and redeem himself. In the end, it’s implied that the main female lead and the main male lead will hook up.

Earthstorm: A female scientist is assigned as head of the team. She then requests the services of the main male character, a demolition expert whose wife has recently passed away, because he is the best at what he does. The main male character reluctantly accepts to go on the space mission to magnetize the moon. Also, the chief scientific advisor to the president is a complete asshole until he’s forced to accept his mistakes and redeem himself. In the end, the main female lead and the main male lead hook up.

The Moon


The Crack of Impact vs. the Crack of Earthstorm

I must say, the one thing going for Earthstorm is that because it was a TV movie, it was much better paced that Impact. Impact had better effects, but it was a bit slow and sappy.

But enough nonsense. What is this, filmmaking by numbers? Do TV networks and production houses share the same blueprint for meteor programs and they just change bits and pieces? It’s kind of ridiculous.

But wait! There’s another meteor miniseries, tentatively called Meteor, dangerously coming our way July 12 on NBC. At least in this one the moon is not involved.


Last Week on So You Think You Can Dance…
YAWN…I miss season 2. This episode almost made me want to die. That being said, there were two great exceptions: Melissa and Ade’s Rumba, and the best routine of the nigh: Evan and Randi’s contemporary butt routine. Mia Michaels outdid herself. I think she produces her very best choreography when she simplifies. Here it is:




This week on So You Think You Can Dance…
Finally, they got it right. All routines were fun, exciting and well danced. Mia Michaels also redeemed herself by explaining -or justifying- the horribly unnecessary way she attacked contestant Brandon when the top 20 were chosen. It was beautiful, and it seemed totally faked from the very beginning, but it got me all teary. Ha! I’m such a girly sometimes…

Thought I must say it seems that this week, the dances were assigned rather than picked randomly: The resident ballerina gets a Pa De Deux , Salsa dancer Janette gets a Cha Cha (which is different from salsa in technique but it’s still a Latin dance), Broadway Evan gets a Broadway routine, contemporary dancers Kayla and Kupono get a contemporary routine, popper Philip gets hip hop; and Vitolio, the one told he’d be in danger if he didn’t bring it, gets Quickstep, a dance known in this show as the kiss of death? And who left the competition the next day? Vitolio.

The show seemed “a bit” rigged, but in the end, it was a good episode. And yet… I still miss season 2.

Here’s the weirdest performance of the night, one of my favorites. Choreographed by Bryan Freedman, this is the story of an alien that, after destroying Earth, wants to impregnate the only survivor. How very fitting for this blog!



What a difference Action Padre McKenna makes: an Angels & Demons mini review (sort of)


Bless me Father, for I have sinned… or have I?

My expectations for this movie were LOW. I’ve never read the book; I never read The Da Vinci Code and its film translation was entertaining and I didn’t mind the excessive exposition, but it wasn’t great.

So I went to see it a few days ago expecting to take a nap. Then my mind got a bit weird, because as soon as The Large Hadron Collider footage came up on screen, I immediately thought about The Large Meme Collider, which made me think of Blog Wars. I guess CHUD.com is now heavily ingrained in my brain.

Anyway, the truth is, I loved this movie. I don’t know if I loved it because it was well acted and well made, or if it was all due to my very low expectations. The ending was kind of crap, the story had its low points, but the movie was much better than The Da Vinci Code: More action, less exposition. I loved the whole intro sequence at CERN.

That being said, despite not completely wanting to admit it, I think the real reason why I loved this movie was Ewan McGregor. I’ve loved him since Trainspotting and he also happens to be one of the stars of one of my favorite films (The Pillow Book). But in Angels & Demons, he is just cool. His character, Carmalengo Patrick McKenna (or as I like to call him, Action Padre McKenna), is like what a relatively sane catholic action hero should be. I’d like to see a film just about Action Padre. The only other religious action heroes I can think of right now are Alexander Anderson from Hellsing, Padre Benicio Del Toro from Machete, and Brother Justin Crowe from Carnivale (this one isn’t exactly an action hero, but you know what I mean).

Come to think of it, an Action Nun would be kind of awesome, sort of like the one from this t-shirt. I have to buy that t-shirt…

I’m spacing out again. I guess this isn’t really a review after all. But, in conclusion, it was a fun movie. Not great, but very entertaining. And Action Padre was divine!

Speaking of religious things – –


John Safran vs. God
If you are an uber sensitive religious person who finds even the most innocent joke about your chosen religion completely insulting, you might not want to watch this.

But if you appreciate irony, or if at least you get the Australian sense of humor, please watch this as soon as you can.

John Safran vs. God is a 2004, 8 part documentary series made for SBS Australia by documentarian and comedian John Safran.

In this wonderful little series, Safran “road tests” a bunch of different religions, participating in rituals, trying to infiltrate religious groups, and even places a temporary fatwa on an Australian TV host. Surely, Safran’s approach is a bit subversive, but underneath the irony there’s a good amount of well researched, interesting information. The tone of the stories range from lighthearted fun, to very dark, to very frightening. In the end, this is a series worth watching but only if, as I mentioned before, you’re not easily offended.

John Safran also has a radio show on Triple J (Australian radio) accompanied by the fabulous Father Bob Maguire (who makes an appearance on John Safran vs. God, in the segment about Catholicism), where they discuss religion, politics, and…hoochies? You can download past programs (updated every week) here:

The John Safran Show

Here’s a sample of John Safran vs. God, and please pay attention to the title sequence. It’s funny:

Would you like to know about the Mormon film industry? Did you even know there was one? Safran covered this theme on this show, too.

Would you like to see the clip? There you go – –


The YouTube video of the week:
On a previous post, I said I had lived with a Mormon family for a year. I have fond memories of that time. I was welcomed by the community with open arms and the family was really good to me. I also met a whole lot of missionaries, but in the end I decided not to convert. This is why I found this segment from John Safran vs God so very amusing. Why can’t there be an action movie about Mormon missionaries that is also respectful to the LDS church? Have a look:


In the next installment of Audiovisual Summer of DOOM: I’ll watch Virtuality (despite bad reviews), I’ll try to see Transformers (and hope my soul won’t be completely crushed), I’ll see if I can watch 10 Things I Hate about You without breaking my TV, and I’ll probably re-watch something old because this summer has kind of sucked!


Until next time…Watch out for those meteorites.


Audiovisual Summer of DOOM, Part 1
Audiovisual Summer of DOOM, Part 2
Audiovisual Summer of DOOM, Part 3