May 28, 2008

Rumors to the contrary....

I had been observing Sadie's first rule of the light blogging club: don't talk about the light blogging club. But I've been getting an increasing stream of emails wondering "WTF?" so I thought I would break radio silence for a sec and let everyone know I'm in fine fettle.

I just checked the logs, and I've been AWOL from the LLamas since early March (my last real post was during McSkeevey-gate, which seems like three centuries ago). My blog sabbatical was partially unplanned: basically, the end of the semester was busting my stones with an inordinate amount of close detail work that I needed to focus in on. While that is done, I've settled in to my real world writing projects for the summer. This was the part that was planned: I needed to take a break from blogging for a bit as the "Steve-O intrepid blogger" persona was draining the juice out of my real world writing. I have a number of big projects I'm trying to finish off and they require a level of writing focus that the short staccato bursts of blogging tend to undermine. I come up for promotion next spring, so now's the time to settle in and focus.

So my thanks to Robbo and the team for holding up my end for now, and sorry for leaving you guys hanging for awhile.

One last thing: I saw Indiana Jones and the Search for the Missing Social Security Check last night. First reaction: meh. Second reaction: ugggh. There were about ten cool minutes (a glimpse of the Ark, the scene where they're talking about WW2), but other than that, I thought the whole thing was rather souless. Worse, they had no idea how to end the thing. And the thought of Indy as an Associate Dean---probably the worst job a professional can have in academia---was downright depressing. About the only Speilberg/Lucas early movie not referenced or nodded to was Jaws, and it would have been nice if a giant white shark ate them in the Amazon when they had a chance.

CGI---great on the small screen, still souless on the big screen.

Posted by Steve-O at May 28, 2008 09:31 AM | TrackBack

I saw Indy this weekend. "Soulless" is exactly right.

I blame George Lucas, and I saw in it one of the same problems I saw in the new Star Wars series -- the effects detract from the film. The problem with them is that they simply mock the laws of physics and the eye knows this, so instead of making the stunts look super, they make them all frankly unbelievable. Cartoonish. I never thought Indy and company were in any real danger. Contrast that with the first Indiana Jones movie's great scenes (the rolling ball, the snakes, the fight with the big Nazi by the plane, or the fights on the truck) and the sense of danger that was added there and there is no comparison -- the cheaper film was far better and the cheap effects were far more realistic.

Plus, there was zero character development. Cate Blanchett was wooden. Shia LeBouef was just annoying. And Karen Allen looked fidgety throughout the whole thing. Add to that that she and Harrison Ford are like, 65, and it just made me uncomfortable. It really detracted from the fight scenes -- no one wants to see grandma and grandpa get hurt.

It wasn't awful, but I doubt I'd ever pop it into the DVD player in the future. I'd rate it as marginally better than the Temple of Doom, but nowhere near Indy I and Indy III in terms of quality.

Posted by: The Abbot at May 28, 2008 10:25 AM