"Matt, you sure have gotten fat."
The aforementioned words were said to me by my uncle Joe, during one of the many pre-Christmas dinners that used to be an annual occurrence at uncle Paul and aunt Vilda's house. I remember sitting at the long dining table, surrounded by family, many of whom I only saw at these gatherings. The door opened and in walked Joe, moving fast as he always did, and that's when he stopped, stared, and said those words to me.
Now, I'm not saying that I wasn't slightly wounded by his remark. Weight's been a struggle for me since the middle school years and, yes, I'd put on a few pounds since the last time he'd seen me. But it was hard to be mad at Joe. He had a way about him. Almost always a twinkle in his eyes. It's true that I have different opinions of my dad's several brothers, but it can be said that Joe was the only one who I thought of as cool. He just was.
Wheel of Fortune host Pat Sajak recently outed himself as a climate change denier. Fair enough. Everyone's entitled to their opinion, even if it makes them look ignorant. That aside, what frustrates me most about the situation isn't that people are rejecting science in favor of their own, rather poor common sense. No, that's bad enough. What really saddens me is how badly we, as human beings, seem to plan for the future.
Our very survival depends -- first and foremost -- on a viable planet for us to sustain a continuation of the species. Even if you want to contend that humanity isn't the primary cause of global warming, then at the very least you have to admit that we shouldn't help it along. After all, a person diagnosed with lung cancer is doing his or herself no favors by taking-up smoking, right?
The first thing you need to know about Gareth Edwards' 2014 version of Godzilla is that it features a fairly small amount of the titular character. This isn't necessarily a bad thing, just... unexpected. Another aspect of the film that was unforeseen (at least by me) is that not all of the big names in the cast are in the movie very much. Perhaps the most notable observation of all, however, is that, despite the surprising turns taken with the characters and lack of huge screen time for the main monster, I found the film to be fairly predictable. Godzilla opens in a flashback to 1999 (has that really been 15 years ago?), and Joe Brody (Bryan Cranston) is an engineer living in Japan along with his wife (Juliette Binoche) and young son. Disaster soon strikes the nuclear power plant where Brody works and, well, I'll just say that the timeline skips forward to present day, where son Ford Brody (Aaron Taylor-Johnson) is all grown-up and coming-off 14 months of active duty in th…
Admittedly, I went into last Friday night's screening of the new movie Neighbors expecting to laugh, and to see actor Zac Efron in various stages of undress. On both counts, the movie delivered. It's not something that deserves to be boasted about (being enamored with another person's physique), but I am honest about it. As it turned out to be the # 1 movie in the country over the weekend, no doubt others felt the same.
What I wasn't expecting with Neighbors was its rather progressive tone. The film, about a thirty-something married couple with a baby who see their lives in tatters after a loud fraternity moves in next door, is a poster child for acceptance and respect for strong women and human sexuality. If you're going in to Neighbors with the expectation of backseat female characters and to be ogling various parts of women's anatomy, you'll be sorely disappointed.
There are times in your life when you will read or watch something, stop for a moment, and think to yourself: "This is truth. This is gospel, right here." For some, it may have been the first time you read the Bible, the Tanakh, or the Koran. For others, it could have been when you read self-help books such as The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People, or Chicken Soup for the Soul. Still, for others, it's going to be this blog post right here.
The truth is, dear reader, that 1993 was the best year for music. Full-stop. Some of you already know this. For others, it will be a revelation. Please, allow me to explain. Following are some of the albums released in 1993, with a bit of commentary from yours truly. During or after reading this, I think you'll agree that there's really no question anymore that 1993 was king.
Ok, here we go.