This is one of those times where I don’t think I have anything to say, but I still feel like writing anyway. I was once told by a writing teacher that even if you feel you have nothing to say, you should just start writing anyway.
His opinion, and I’ve often found this to be true, was that if you start and keep on going, eventually words will flow. The trick is to start.
Thinking about that now I really feel it applies to almost any endeavor. Simply put: If you don’t start, you’ll never finish.
I’m sure most of you are familiar with the famous Wayne Gretsky quote where he says: “You miss 100% of the shots you don’t take.” Again, I think that applies to most things in life.
Starting things, like a writing project, is often very difficult. But I don’t think it’s the act of starting that’s the problem. What we’re really talking about here is fear.
For a writer, that fear most often manifests along the lines of “What if it sucks?” or “What if nobody likes it?” or even “What if people are so enraged by what I write, they want to burn me in effigy?” Actually, that last one might not be so bad.
Well, nobody wants to get burned in effigy, of course, but writing something powerful enough and moving enough to get people that enraged could be kinda cool. Again, if you can avoid the whole being burned thing.
We all feel fear at one time or another and there’s always the potential that fear will drive us to do something or, more to the point, to not do something. But we can’t let it win. We can’t let it get to us.
One of my favorite movies of all time is Lawrence of Arabia. In the movie, T.E. Lawrence, played by the amazing Peter O’Toole, holds up a match and then extinguishes it with his thumb and forefinger, seemingly oblivious to the pain this must surely have caused him.
His fellow soldier, William Potter, then tries to do the same and as he does, he realizes just how painful it actually is. He exclaims that “It damn well hurts!”
Potter then askes Lawrence what the trick is. Lawrence replies that yes, of course it hurts.
The trick is not minding.
Many of these made me laugh. Some made me, well, experience other emotions. Anyway, here’s a little video containing some fun Community outtakes.
Enjoy them as this week’s episode may be the last one ever. Fingers crossed for a renewal from NBC, though. Thursday night’s episode would be a hard way to go out.
No, I didn’t think it was that great. I was hoping for more. On a side note, don’t read anything into the fact that most of these outtakes contain scenes with Alison Brie. That’s just a coincidence.
I also have no idea how the picture of her eating ice cream came back again. I thought I got rid of that. Please accept my humble apologies and I will try not to let it happen again.
In truth, I never did much “live” role-playing like the gang in this trailer for Knights of Badassdom. However, I did enjoy more than a few fun times playing some Dungeons & Dragons on the ping pong table in my parent’s garage. No, we didn’t have a basement. I live in California, people, come on.
Anyway, this trailer made me laugh. So, I’m going to share it with you so you can get a laugh on a cloudy Monday. Well, cloudy in California anyway. Ironic, I realize.
Check out the trailer for Knights of Badassdom, which stars Ryan Kwanten, Dani Pudi, Summer Glau, Stave Zahn and Peter Dinklage, below. From what I understand, this trailer is for the version of the movie that is not the director’s cut. If true, that’s unfortunate.
However, it doesn’t take away from the trailer being fun. And fun is what I’m all about today.
Continuing a fine tradition of coffee-related posts, I’ve got another one for you. This one is a new, handy chart that tells you just what the coffee beverage you order says about you as a person.
Check it out below. Oh, in case you’re wondering, according to this chart I’m “assertive and outspoken, don’t let seasons dictate how I live my life and I like straws.” Huh, maybe there’s something to this chart after all?
What kind of coffee are you?
I’ve been thinking a lot about Raiders of the Lost Ark lately, so I decided to watch it for what must be at least the thirtieth time. I will assume (dangerous, I realize) that most of you have seen it. If not, I think you should immediately find a way to see it and then come on back here.
For the rest of you, you know how truly awesome the movie is. From the acting to the story to the set pieces to the cool stuff going on just under the surface (the subtext, as we writer-types like to call it), Raiders has so many amazing things about it, and going for it, that it’s considered by many (myself included) to be one of the best movies of all time. In fact, it’s on my top ten all-time best list. If it isn’t on yours, it should be.
I was alive and there on opening day when Raiders first arrived in theaters On June 12, 1981 and as a young boy I was captivated by Indiana Jones and his adventures from the moment the Paramount mountain first dissolved to a real mountain until the last frame as the Ark is being put in a safe place, presumably until those so-called “top men” have time to examine it.
Director Steven Spielberg, producer George Lucas and writer Lawrence Kasdan knew just what to include in Raiders so kids of all ages would be entertained, enthralled and still be watching, and talking about, this moving textbook of filmmaking excellence over thirty years later. You certainly can’t say that about most films made in the last thirty years, especially a vast majority of the immediately forgettable crap that seems to pass for movies these days.
Raiders is one of a handful of films that help remind me what’s possible when a dedicated group of highly creative people get together and use their considerable talents and imaginations to create something. It helps me recapture the sense of wonder and, dare I say it, magic that’s sorely lacking in today’s films and, let’s face it, in society in general.
It truly is one of the greats and worthy of the esteem it holds with millions of fans around the world.
Here’s the original trailer for the film below. Enjoy. And really I can’t stress this enough, if you haven’t seen the movie, you owe it to yourself to watch it as soon as possible.
Today is Sunday. Check the calendar if you don’t believe me. Okay? We good? Maybe take a guy’s word for it next time, huh?
Anyway, as I often do on Sundays (at least until Project M “officially” begins), I’m watching old movies. Although, the one today isn’t that old.
It’s 1963′s Jason and the Argonauts featuring the amazing stop-motion work of the master Ray Harryhausen. If you’ve never seen it, it is definitely worth watching. . . for many reasons.
Not the least of which is this pretty awesome skeleton fight that blew me away when I first saw this movie as a kid. No, not when it came out. Later, on TV.
In fact, I think the first time was a Sunday much like this one on the old Channel 13 in LA. I miss that channel, they had some great stuff.
Here’s the skeleton fight, just so you can get a taste of what I’m talking about.
As you might have guessed, I like coffee. In fact, some would say, I’m slightly obsessed about it. Truth be told, I don’t think I’m alone in that. I think lots of others like coffee as much, or more, than I do.
So, in the spirit of helping out my fellow coffee fans, here’s a handy little graphic that helps illustrate just how much caffeine you’re getting from various kinds of beverages.
I hope this helps.
Continuing our trend of highlighting visual effects work, here’s a reel from Stargate Studios showcasing their work on The Walking Dead season 3. In addition to all the great zombie kills, pay particular attention to what they did with the prison. And they did it all with Adobe After Effects. Huh.
I had the privilege of knowing effects guru Stan Winston a little, having met him originally though a mutual friend. In fact, I visited his studio during the time he was working on the first Jurassic Park movie.
I was amazed at what I saw and when the movie eventually came out, I was even more amazed at how it all came together combining Stan’s animatronics with Dennis Muren, Phil Tippett and Michael Lantieri’s work (among many others). It changed the way movies were made forever.
In short, he was pretty much a genius.
So, many years later, it’s fun to see these videos put out by the Stan Winston School shot during the time he was working on the movie. Things sure have come a long way in the visual effects world, but at the time, this was the pinnacle of technology and very cutting-edge stuff.
I think it still looks pretty damn good. Enjoy.
Yep, you read that right. Someone went to the trouble to put all six Star Wars movies together in the same screen and run them at the same time. To be honest, I don’t know if I love this or hate it. Maybe a bit of both.
I do know I’ve got a headache from watching it. Enjoy and you’re welcome.