Still trying to make these at least one a week. I need more letters to make it happen but I also need email clients to treat all text equally and not create these headaches where the text comes in different sizes and colors and formats. It’s 2006 and still text is hated like I’m still in 1994. And here we go with the letters!

Smuggler’s Blues (SEND A LETTER)

Mitch to the right.Kevin: I just got back from watching Miami Vice. Michael Mann is a genius of cinema! He brought the fundamentals back to the summer movie…fast boats, fast cars, hot chicks, gunplay, and a dash of pathos. In a summer full of flicks with a guy in blue tights, a dude with claws, and a sea monkey riding on a CG eagle (M.Night, you owe me $11 bucks, bastard.), I found this to be the most enjoyable. 13 Tzameti is a close second. I plan to see Miami Vice in the theater once more, and am eagerly awaiting the DVD. I’d love to see a featurette master class given by the DP, Dion Beebe on lighting for High Definition Video. It’s information we indie filmmakers desperately need. Anyway, let’s recap. Miami Vice…kick ass flick. Everything else…multiple punches to the nut sack.

Nick: I loved it too, the most expensive and obtuse art flick ever released as a franchise summer action flick. It’s so not an action flick and it’s so not Miami Vice the show and it’s so not about catering to an audience’s expectations. That’s great for us that love it but I feel for the bean counters come next Friday when the film drops like an anchor.

Microscopes (SEND A LETTER)

Mitch to the right.Alex: Just a couple of quick morsels for you to chew on.

Are you going to run any of the Movie Microscope reviews as a CHUD
Rerun? The review for the Hunted is one of my favorites.

Somebody needs to get Michael Mann on board a Tom Clancy video game adaptation.

Nick: Wow, someone remembders the Movie Microscope. Sure thing. I’ll do The Hunted next. Mann on a Clancy book is a stellar idea. I totally never considered that, especially since they’re pretty good already with Phil Alden Robinson or Phillip Noyce at the helm. I’d kill for a Mann made Rainbow Six with Liev Schreiber and an all-star cast including Bruce McGill, Wings Hauser, and Olivier Gruner.

Just a Real Nice Letter (SEND A LETTER)

Mitch to the right.Shawn: I rarely get on the message boards for fear of losing my already tenuous grip on reality, but I really wanted to drop you a line and say that I’m glad to see you back on CHUD. Over the last few years I was really happy to see your career taking off in new directions with CNN, 11CA! , Meg and everything else you’ve been doing, but part of my day hasn’t really been complete without getting to read your wiseass view on the latest shit going down at the cineplex.

I just wanted to say thanks for entertaining the hell out of me for the last (damn, what is it, 7 years? 8?). Best luck with all your future endeavors. (and best wishes to your family)

Nick: Much appreciated. I’m back on the site fulltime, as well as a few other things fulltime. That means I have a fucked concept of what fulltime means, don’t I? All I can ask is that you hang around and spread the word.

Checking Up (SEND A LETTER)

Mitch to the right.Andrew: Good to see more leakage, but once more I ask (I’ve asked 3 or 4 times) Where the F is The Prognosticator!? Is Devin just lazy?

Also – Why the devil is Pan’s Labyrinth coming out in late December? Oscars? That’s a million months away.

Anyway, keep it up, leak more. we’ll be reading.

Ps. I could use your help on the boards talking smack about that self-conscious Disney Pirate Bore-fest.

Nick: September will see the return of the Prognosticator. I think we’ll want to add a few more horses to the stable to make it more robust, but it’ll be back. Devin is doing a lot, so the ongoing columns got the shaft. Makes perfect sense. Look for THUD to be reborn as a team effort. Pan’s Labyrinth (my review) is coming out at a time that is good for awards and good for being a place where people are likely to be in theaters. It’s not a horror flick in the "Let’s release it at Halloween" sense. It’s a classic flick. It sucks to have to wait, but I think it’ll help the movie find its audience. I am not going to waste my time discussing POTC:DMC. We did our tag team review and got a bucket full o’ grief for it.

No Downloading Here (SEND A LETTER)

Mitch to the right.Adrian: At the arse-end of your most recent letters column, you printed my words (Re: The Amateurs) including the line “I sought it out and found it to be very cool” – subsequently, I was horrified – horrified I tell you, to find your reply contained “Please tell me you didn’t download it. I’ll punch you so hard.”

If I was in fact at fault you’d be absolutely right to, but please put the knuckle dusters down for the time being. Now I won’t claim to be a saint – I’m sure there are plenty of movies that you’d punch me even harder for actually forking over cash to see (I’m looking at you, Ice Cube), but 99.99999% of the time I empathise that film makers have gots to get paid too. I did in fact hit up (see link below) play dot com – £12 spent blind is more faith than I would have in anyone else’s judgement, and Chud has had me spending money in the past on the likes of Primer that otherwise filmmakers would never have seen a penny from me for. The Moguls, as the distributors saw fit to re-title it when their necks were in my woods, was released on DVD days before you recommended it, and thus I assumed your pimping was partially a result of its recent wider availability. Those of a multi-region persuasion will be able to import this bad boy Spaced-style for their viewing pleasure, probably from Amazon or some such.

Thanks again,


P.S. I don’t know if the cellphone provider Orange operates in the US, but in our fair country they operate a promotion named orange Wednesdays, whereby in exchange for a text message you get a twofer at the movies on a Wednesday. Said company sees fit to pimp their promotion with some excellent pre-flick trailers. At this stage, if you know what I’m talking about you either hate me or are nodding in agreement. If you don’t know what I’m talking about, do check these out – for my money they’re made for film-nerds, which is why it makes me smile whilst enjoying them to know that most of the casual movie-goers around me care not a dot:

Nick: I had to put that out there. I wasn’t aware the film already came and went overseas. I really cannot stand illegal downloading of films as it continues the descent into laziness and disprespect. I appreciate your clarification. Let’s have a glass of whisky and celebrate!

Plenty of Backbone (SEND A LETTER)

Mitch to the right.Ian: Based on your strong review/reverence for/unhealthy love for all things del Toro, I recently rented the Devil’s Backbone and was extremely pleased to find that it not only met but exceeded the hype. Just want you to know that the site does direct people to quality films, and I’m looking forward to Pan when it hits locally for me.

Nick: That movie is going to make your winter. I’m actually a little upset I didn’t spend more time writing that review, ’cause I could have gone on and on. Spread the word, Ian. The more people psyched about a crazy great film like Pan’s Labyrinth the better.

Comic Con, From the Inside (SEND A LETTER)

Mitch to the right.Bill: My name is Bill. I am not enclosing my last name because I don’t want anything I say attributed to me. I work as a Volunteer Con Staffer for Exhibitor Registration. This is my 9th year as a volunteer, 4th year in a row.

As a testament of my bonafides, I work in television as a grip (Film/Episodic) and a Camera Operator/Assistant in live television (Mainly Professional Sports) I am in my 40’s, married to same woman for 10 years and a self declared SCI-FI geek.

This concerns the Comic-Con Post "Post-Mortem" by author David Faranci. First of all, excellent stuff. Each and every point he makes are all valid concerns and/or observations. I could not agree with him more on most of his suggestions, particularly when they address behavior of CON attendee’s, boot legging the panels, Posing in major walkways, etc.

As a staffer with a Green Staff Tag on my badge, that was a constant problem as I moved about the floor addressing concerns of the exhibitor’sop’s out to the concourse. IF they refused to move, I would physically position myself between the photo taker and the poser. Pissed off a few but Staff beats Attendee’s in this regard. (Attendees in Costumes stopping to pose.) I would tell people that they needed to take their photo.

With regards to a *Tiered* press pass system. Again, I and my fellow EXH-Reg Staffers could not agree more. SOme members of the press (I use that term loosely) were not provided access to to the show floor before or after posted hours. Those that desired such access were sent to Exh-RegMIKEY’s WORLD WIDE COMIC BLOG." Mind you, he was carrying a bag full of SWAG, had a 100 dollar digital camera around his neck and was wearin g 4 or 5 free necklaces provided by the vendor’s. HE explained his request as I smiled politely. After he finished his 3 minute dissertation on why he absolutely had to have pre-show access, I promptly denied his request. He said "I have a website that gets over 80,000 unique web hits a day…" I said "My apologies but if you are that well know, you will have to get your access from the Press desk…" He got indignant and demanded to speak with my boss who just happened to be standing over my shoulder at the time. Sam Waters asked him to repeat his request as he handed me a note to Google the kids site. Guess what. We could not find a single ref to his site on Goo gle. After googling the Kids name, we discovered that he has a Free Web page at which provides free blog space. He was blogging in a World Of Warcraft Area and what he really needed was access to the floor so he could go play the Beta Version of the Next Blizzard ENtertainment title. After Sam saw the Actual Site, Sam Politely said "Let me take your badge and get in touch with Chris at the Press Desk" Sam Calls Chris Over and says "This Gentleman needs early access to the floor as a member of the press, this is what our computer shows his access should be…" All the while Chris is looking at the free blog space that the kids used to gain access to the show. At this point Chris says "I hav e to pull your credential and you will need to purchase an attendee ticket… Your Blog site does not qualify as a True Press Professional and you are not eligible for a press pass." True Story! help desk to see if we would issue them Temp access badges. We never did but it let Press desk be the good guys because we were the ones who said NO. I will give you a classic example of an actual incident. I kid of about 19 or 20 came up to the help desk asking for a temp pass. I asked to see his badge and it said his name. For organization it said "UNCLE
I am sure Press desk is still trying to figure out how the kid slipped thru the cracks.

Live Blogging from Hall A. I had no idea it was a problem and I have emailed the entire article to the appropriate Con (Paid) Staff as an F.Y.I.

Figure out your future-Could not agree more. There is a constant battle between the CON Exec Board (Old Guard) and CON Board of Director’s (Con New Guard, most are paid staffers such as lawyers, accountants, business exec’s, etc).

On the convention floor, Hall A is actually used as a storage area for Convention center overflow of materials, etc. This needs to be moved out of the convention center so that another 15-20 k floor space would be available. Problem is, if that much space opens up, business side would IMMEDIATLY squawk about making 95% available to paid exhibit. Such a large infusion of floor space would bring out the mega corporations demanding more space for larger exhibits, etc. Our Con leadership needs to develop a coherent plan that sees actual Comic Book Vendors scattered thru out the floor and not just relegated to hall a, b and c. As it is, some exhibitors offer some folks like my self bribes if we can guarantee them a spot near DC Comics, Dark Horse, Bli zzard, Wizards of the Coast, etc. Ethically, I would never take a bribe but I do tell them truthfully that I don’t have that authority. Even if I did have such authority, I would never accept a bribe.

In Closing, I just found your site and will be a frequent vistor, as a fan.

Nick: Awesome, and I mean awesome. I have a future Leak coming up where I address Comic Con, but this was a badass reply to Devin’s recent Post-Mortem.

We Ruined Lady in the Water! (SEND A LETTER)

Mitch to the right.Adam: My name is Adam Dawes, and I have been a fan of your website for the past 3 years. I am the manager of a 10 plex located in Cape Coral, FL., and post reviews from your website in our lobby. With each review your website address was included so customers would know its source. I am sad to say that not only will I no longer continue to do this, I will no longer be visiting your site period. At 10:00 am this morning, I logged onto your site and noticed Devin had posted a review for Lady in the Water, a film I am excited about seeing. At no point was there any mention of a spoiler alert, none. But after spending the first part of his review inexplicably criticizing other M. Night movies, he immediately mentioned an apparent major plot line, one describing that the main character’s dark secret was that his family was murdered. I stopped reading at that point. I’m really angry about this. I’m not sure if typing this is a waste of my time or not. That once you read this E-mail you’ll just laugh about it w/ the other employees of, but I want you to know that you just lost a major fan of you and your site.

Nick: I guess you won’t be reading this, since you’re a goner. A few problems. 1) You shouldn’t have been excited about seeing that film. 2) It wasn’t really a spoiler. A spoiler would have been "Story (Bryce Dallas Howard) smells like fish down there". Anyhow, if you somehow read this, I’d say that you ought to keep your chin up and a "One Spoiler Every Three Years" ratio is pretty good. Please print my Torque review next and show it to everyone.

Shark Cast (SEND A LETTER)

Mitch to the right.Dave: Hey Nick any idea who will be casting director for MEG? Thanks Dave….

Nick: No one until we get greenlit.

Another Prick (SEND A LETTER)

Mitch to the right.Spaulding 4 Prez: MEG.

Nick: Wow, you’re bashing the movie I’m involved with. I’d hate to see what you’re gonna do when I have a few under my belt and a little scratch in my wallet.

Anti-Christian (SEND A LETTER)

Mitch to the right.Merle: to quote: The reason the subject of Global Warming is so near and dear to leftist anti-Christians such as yourself is that you can dream of possessing god-like powers. What can be more god-like than Saving the Planet or Preserving Endangered Species? Why, it’s like replaying Genesis 1. "And Man said ‘Let there be Spotted Owls!’ And Lumberjacks were expelled from The Rainforest. And it was Good." All you manage to do is display vanity and conceit, nothing more. – Russell, Leak #42

Why is is that everytime someone cares about the planet they are always accused of being "anti-Christian"? What does Christianity (in its many and varied forms and sects) have to do with environmental issues? A belief in something greater than yourself is sort of the basis for environmentalists. You would think that Christians (or religious people in general) would get that right off the bat. I don’t think it’s about God like. I think it’s about, ‘Hey – according to you guys, we were given this lovely planet and we shouldn’t squander our gifts, whether it be the spotted owl, those stupid sea cows (manatees), or the forests.’ It’s not so much about saving the planet as it is about preserving what is and was. Extinction of a species is like a failure. God (allegedly) gave us these cool little things to run and fly and swim around. We did some things we shouldn’t have and they died. All of them. Catholics already have too much guilt to go around, so I don’t think they’d be able to handle that. I think that, as a good Christian, this guy should make it his mission to save all of God’s creations just like he would if it were an embriotic stem cell. As this guy said, what can be more God-like than saving the planet or preserving endangered species? We are, after all, made in his own image and we can only dream of emulating him. Imitation is the greatest form of flattery, after all….

-The Evil Jew

PS – Does this mean that Christians, much like A Modest Proposal, would eat the spotted owl given the chance? A nice burgundy sauce, or maybe a savingion reduction sauce…. tasty!

Nick: Interesting letter. My main problem with Christians or people of any religion, is when they try to force it on me or shove it in my face. It’s why I answer the door when the Jehovah’s Witnesses ring and it’s why I have a pile of skeletons under my home. I don’t really have much of a religious makeup. My wife does, because you have to believe in a better place after this if you’re waking up with me next to you. Otherwise she’s shoot me. But, we really aren’t any more important than any other species in the grand scheme in my mind. I guess that’s why I’m still crushed by a frog I stepped on in 1990 and a snake I intentionally killed in 1984. I just realized that what I wrote had nothing to do with what you wrote. Here’s some more random bullshit. Damn, I really miss Paine Stewart.

Discuss the Leak Letters here.