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Showing posts from April, 2009

Cardio (6.0155)

Thursday, April 30, 2009 ...cardio day... It was a cardio only day and I did 30 minutes on the elliptical machine accept part way through my stomach was off. I had to push through it. I wonder if it was a result of not having enough liquids in me. Not sure.I was in no shape afterwards to do stomach crunches.Since I haven't been doing as many leg lunges and leg squats, I could feel it today. My thighs were tight. Probably should have done some stretching, but I just wanted to leave.Posted 2009/04/30 at 20h56ET in Exercise.

Independence Day (1996)

Thursday, April 30, 2009 Independence Day. Feature film. (1996, 145 mins) IMDB...another tent-pole movie... They say you can't make this film anymore because of September 11th. Maybe. INDEPENDENCE DAY is one of those tent-pole movies that did well. Here the computer effects are for the most part believable. It was made at a time before the craze to have films loaded with CGI. I don't know what actor said it, but it seems accurate and apropos, "They don't teach you how to work with blue screen in school and they should." The film is peppered with one-dimensional characters and that's to be expected. Our hero gets to be the hero, the nag plays the nag. They don't change notes. Since this is an action film, it is of course filled with action that is implausible. The final downfall of the alien forces seems completely implausible. The heroes should have died, but audiences don't like those types of downers. And who where these aliens? Ugly cre…

Toronto Stories (2008)

Thursday, April 30, 2009 Toronto Stories. Feature film. (2008, 89 mins) IMDB...Toronto as Toronto for a change... A pre-adolescent boy arrives at Pearson International airport. He wears a suit and white shirt, doesn't speak English and has no identification. He probably comes from East Africa or the Middle East. Immigration officials take him in and so starts the story except it's four stories and this boy is the string linking them. From the airport, he manages to walk out, get on a bus and head to downtown Toronto. Don't ask me how or why, but that's what happens. It defies logic, but hey. In the first encounter, he meets a boy his age ridding a bicycle in the park near the Bloor Viaduct. The local boy helps the stranger but not long after our visitor vanishes and doesn't show up until the next story. This first story, SHOELACES, is about two pre-adolescent kids riding their bikes and investigating make-believe monsters. Ten-year old kids going out after…

Movies Watched in April 2009

Movies Watched in April 20091. 2009/04/01 Twilight (2008). Drama. (2008, 122 mins.) **
2. 2009/04/02 Things We Lost in the Fire. Drama. (2007, 110 mins.) ***
3. 2009/04/02 Four Frightened People. Action. (1934, 78 mins.) **½
4. 2009/04/03 Flash of Genius. Drama. (2008, 119 mins.) **½
5. 2009/04/04 Evening. Drama. (2007, 117 mins.) **
6. 2009/04/05 The Pink Panther. Comedy. (2006, 93 mins.) **½
7. 2009/04/05 White Nights. Drama. (1985, 136 mins.) **½
8. 2009/04/05 Because I Said So. Romantic Comedy. (2007, 102 mins.) **
9. 2009/04/06 Dirty Pretty Things. Drama. (2002, 97 mins.) ***
10. 2009/04/06 Dirty Pretty Things. Drama. (2002, 97 mins.) ***
11. 2009/04/06 My Big Fat Greek Wedding. Romantic Comedy. (2002, 95 mins.) ***
12. 2009/04/06 My Big Fat Greek Wedding. Romantic Comedy. (2002, 95 mins.) ***
13. 2009/04/07 Tough Guys Don't Dance. Crime. (1987, 110 mins.) **
14. 2009/04/07 Immortal Beloved. Drama. (1994, 120 mins.) ***½
15. 2009/04/08 Demon Seed. Fantasy. (1977, 94 mins.) *…

Weights (6.0147)

Wednesday, April 29, 2009 ...a long, full weights workout... There are lot of companies that promise quick fixes when it comes to losing weight and getting into shape. They are full of shit. To lose fat and gain muscle takes effort, discipline and time. That later means patience, which means no quick fixes. To think otherwise is nuts.Stomach Crunches on Swiss Ball: 30 reps x 6 sets with 2KG medicine ball. Bicep Curls on Swiss Ball: 7kg x 25 reps x 6 sets Tricep Presses on Swiss Ball: 14kg x 25 reps x 3 sets. Leg Lunges: 10 reps x 6 sets - Left/RightSquats: 10 reps x 6 sets.Lateral Back 27 kg x 25 reps x 3 setsVertical Back 27 kg x 25 reps x 3 setsPosted 2009/04/29 at 20h47ET in Exercise.

Speed (1994)

Wednesday, April 29, 2009 Speed. Feature film. (1994, 116 mins) IMDB...one of best action films--ever!... SPEED is an action film and one of the best ever produced. The film was made at a time when computer effects were just starting to take hold in film production. Today, action films are so filled with computer effects they are computer games, not films. Bond films, SPEED and others like it where a bus flies in the air, where people are jump from a moving bus are what action films should be. I sense a revolt among viewers when it comes to CGI and action movies. We want the real thing, not an imitation.Posted 2009/04/29 at 20h47ET in Movie Commentary.

Fierce People (2005)

Wednesday, April 29, 2009 Fierce People. Feature film. (2005, 107 mins) IMDB...a far too predictable filme... Where do people get the notion that being eccentric is interesting? It may be interesting in itself for a few seconds, but it wears, after which point there had better be something happening to the characters or we'll get bored. But that's not enough, because we have to care about the characters and I never cared about the characters in this film. Diane Lane plays a single mother living in a small, run-down apartment in NYC. She's a masseuse, sort of, because she screws just about anyone who shows up at her door, does drugs and drinks to excess. Her adolescent son lives with her and just accepts that her mother is screwed up. Here comes the inciting incident. A very rich dude wants her to live and work for him as his personal masseuse and in a flash, the two of them pack up and head to this giant estate out in the country. What follows really doesn't matt…

Cardio (6.0138)

Tuesday, April 28, 2009 ...another cardio day... Another cardio day. 30 minutes on the elliptical machine. A good workout. I had thoughts of stretching and stomach crunches afterward, but felt rushed for time and didn't get to it.Posted 2009/04/28 at 20h02ET in Exercise.

The Love Guru (2008)

Tuesday, April 28, 2009 The Love Guru. Feature film. (2008, 87 mins) IMDB...it's much funnier film than people give it credit... I saw the many bad reviews for this film before I watched it and braced myself. I'm also biased because this film is about hockey and Canada which means I can relate and I do. I will say I was surprised. I had a smile on my face from the start of the movie to the end. That doesn't happen very often. Rarely. This film did it for me. My cheeks are sore from smiling. I'm in isolation in that regard, but that's what happened. Yes, I cringed at the urine mop sequence (please press fast forward) and the elephants copulating on the ice during a hockey game was too much, but I can let that pass because I was laughing and smiling so much during the rest of the film. If this film rated so poorly, what gives? What did I see that others didn't? What is wrong with them? I'm not sure. I suppose since success is measured with US bo…

Butterfly on a Wheel (2007)

Tuesday, April 28, 2009 Shattered. Feature film. (2007, 95 mins) IMDB...one of the best thrillers I've seen in a long time... As in many thrillers there are twists and turns and they are based on withheld information and disinformation. This film is no different in that regard. During the long, boring setup, we meet Mr. and Mrs. Perfect couple. They live in a perfect house in Chicago. They have a perfect young daughter. The husband has a perfect job where he's perfect. Life couldn't be any better. That's a typical setup for this type of movie because what follows is the complete upheaval of their life. With plans for the weekend, a man confronts them in their SUV. He has a gun and tells them their daughter is a hostage. Do as I say and she won't be hurt. So far there's nothing in this film we haven't seen before, but what follows is different including the ending. I think it's next to impossible to predict the third act, to guess what happens.…

Weights (6.0130)

Monday, April 27, 2009 ...a full weights workout... Bench Press: 11kg x 25 reps x 3 setsInclined Bench Press: 11kg x 25 reps x 3 setsStomach Crunches on Swiss Ball: 30 reps x 6 sets with 2KG medicine ball. Bicep Curls: 7kg x 25 reps x 6 sets No Leg Lunges.No Squats.Posted 2009/04/27 at 20h54ET in Exercise.

Blood Diamond (2006)

Monday, April 27, 2009 Blood Diamond. Feature film. (2006, 143 mins) IMDB...an intense film--must see... In the West African nation of Sierra Leone you can find diamonds. Control the diamonds and you control the income that comes from selling them. With the money from selling diamonds and you can fund an army to maintain control over the diamonds and continue the cycle. Having lived in West Africa, I can related to what is shown in this film. It is dangerous place even when civil war isn't breaking out. Solomon is a fisherman trying to provide for his family. He wants his son to do well in school. His world is turned upside down when rebel forces attack his village. What is shown is gruesome. Sick even. The villagers are shot with AK-47s. Those who survive are tortured and mutilated. I'll never fully understand who people can do this and while the film tries to answer that question, I don't think it can. Solomon, because he is fit and able, is taken from the vi…

Cardio (6.0121)

Sunday, April 26, 2009 ...cardio but no swimming... Since it was Sunday I was supposed to go swimming. It didn't happen. The pool is open from 16h to 17h and I wasn't able to get their in time. Instead of swimming I did 30 minutes on the elliptical machine. That's always a good workout.Posted 2009/04/26 at 22h19ET in Exercise.

Sahara (1943)

Sunday, April 26, 2009 Sahara. Feature film. (1943, 97 mins) IMDB...a predictable WWII film... SAHARA is an entirely predictable WWII film staring Humphrey Bogart. Bogart is a sergeant of a tank crew in North Africa. The tide is turning against the allies. HQ orders him and his tank to retreat, to go south and they head south. It's just one tank and a few soldiers. Their concerns are the German troops and water. They encounter a British hospital unit that is battered and bruised. The two forces hook up and continue south in search of water. While Bogart is only a sergeant, the British officer in charge of his unit gives up command to Bogart. That's why he's the star. Enter a Sudanese soldier who guides them toward a well. Enter a German plane who attacks them. They fight back and shoot down the plane. They have a prisoner of war in this pilot who embodies the hatred towards Germans. Enter an Italian officer who embodies the bon-homme sitting on the fence type. H…

Catch a Fire (2006)

Sunday, April 26, 2009 Catch a Fire. Feature film. (2006, 101 mins) IMDB...I don't think I'll ever understand the violence in South Africa... This is not the movie I thought it was going to be. Not your typical Hollywood film. Apartheid. Blacks v. Whites. Torture. Struggles. Hard to image it existed, but I don't doubt it. Reminds of A DRY WHITE SEASON. Different, but very similar, yet the SEASON was a much better film. One difference: we don't see the whites living cosy lives, we see it from the blacks perspective with the whites as the Nazis. The film could be called: how to become a terrorist because at the start of the film Patrick is the exact opposite of a terrorist. He's married with two daughters. We works as a boss in an important oil refinery in the country. He keeps his nose clean and stays away from the political troubles in his country. But that's not enough. The ANC bombs the plant where he works and the whites suspect it's him. It …

A Home at the End of the World (2004)

Sunday, April 26, 2009 Home at the End of the World. Feature film. (2004, 97 mins) IMDB...those 70s hairdos were replaced with even wilder 80s hairdos... This film is one of those films I wanted to like a great deal more than I did, but I could never get to that point. Perhaps what I'm saying is I wanted to love it, but never did and that might be asking too much because there aren't many films I love. Too much happens in the film, over decades, to summarize it with a sentence or two. We meet our hero as a nine-year old boy with an older brother who is a spaced-out on drugs. When he walks through a plate-glass window, a chard punctures his neck and he dies. Flashforward a few years where Bobby is now in high school. He smokes drugs and befriends Jonathon. They are both on the fringes of society. They are friendly in a way that suggests they are gay and it turns out at least one is gay. Bobby lost his brother, then his mother and now his father. He goes to live with Jon…

Swim (6.0113)

Saturday, April 25, 2009 ...oops! It helps to bring my swim trunks when I want to go swimming... Since it's Saturday I planned to swim some laps--one of those easy workouts, but I forgot to bring my swim trunks. Oops. Ugh. I've could have gone au naturel--I was the only one in the pool--but I decided to go in with my workout shorts. What the hell. It worked. There was an interesting side effect. Since they are skin tight, I was swimming laps much faster. My swim trunks are baggy and must create drag.I also put in some time in the gym before my swim.Stomach Crunches on Swiss Ball: 30 reps x 6 sets with 2KG medicine ball. Bicep Curls: 7kg x 25 reps x 6 sets Posted 2009/04/25 at 19h42ET in Exercise.

Miss Potter (2006)

Saturday, April 25, 2009 Miss Potter. Feature film. (2006, 92 mins) IMDB...enchanting and charming... MISS POTTER is a charming film about the life of Beatrix Potter--noted children's book author and illustrator. It's the early 1900s in London, England. Potter lives an affluent and protected life with her wealthy parents. She loves animals, love to draw and paint. She also writes stories about her animals. The early scenes show her making her first steps in the publishing world. The two older brothers who run a publishing firm don't think much of her book and give it to their younger, neophyte brother as a pet project. Little did they realize the book and many that followed would be best sellers. The young brother is Norman Warne. The two fall in love but since Potter has sworn off marriage and the norms of Victorian England are restrictive, it takes a while for the love to blossom. When she agrees to marry him, her parents are against it. He's a tradesman an…

Passchendaele (2008)

Saturday, April 25, 2009 Passchendaele. Feature film. (2008, 114 mins) IMDB...it's great to see a Canadian story on screen... I say bravo Paul Gross. As a passionate Canadian I'm biased about this film. I've watched many films and documentaries about both World Wars where it appears as if Canada had nothing to do with either. That's hard to take. It gets me angry especially since some of my uncles fought in both wars. CNN once showed a graphic: WWII 1941-1945. It's not just Canadians who'd be pissed by such a graphic. A documentary on the DVD for PATTON says as much, "In 1942, just three months into the war..." Well enough is enough said Paul Gross and I don't blame him. Canadian soldiers fighting in Europe were fierce. Something about farming and mining and hauling logs will build character that is perfect for the battlefield. One of the things I learned from the movie is the derivation of the word: storm-trooper. The Germans created it…

Weigths (6.0104)

Friday, April 24, 2009 ...full weights workout... Another change in my routine where I did 9 sets of stomach crunches and bicep curls--not sure if it's too much, maybe.Bench Press: 11kg x 25 reps x 3 setsInclined Bench Press: 11kg x 20 reps x 3 setsTricep Presses: 14kg x 25 reps x 3 sets. Stomach Crunches on Swiss Ball: 30 reps x 9 sets with 2KG medicine ball. Bicep Curls: 7kg x 25 reps x 9 sets No Leg Lunges.No Squats.Posted 2009/04/24 at 19h23ET in Exercise.

Miss Congeniality (2000)

Friday, April 24, 2009 Miss Congeniality. Feature film. (2000, 109 mins) IMDB...good for a laugh or two... I liked this movie, so shot me. Yes, it's devoid of suspense, it has a formulaic structure, and there's no character I'd want to invite to dinner, but there were funny moments even if stupid and silly. It works because we like Sandra Bullock. She can play comic roles. There are elements of nuisance in her performance that few actors can pull off. It's the first time I've watched this film and I liked it far better than I should have. I enjoyed Miss California's outburst moment on stage in front of a live TV audience when she says, "I just want to let all the lesbians out there know if I can make the top ten, so can you!" In a cut to the TV control room, the director asks a butch operator, "Can we say lesbian on TV?" and the operator replies, "Yeah, you got a problem with that." The director is stunned silent. Well, I lau…

The Wrestler (2008)

Friday, April 24, 2009 The Wrestler. Feature film. (2008, 111 mins) IMDB...why do people put themselves through this?... When a movie like THE WRESTLER receives a great deal of hype, as this film surely did, and I haven't seen it before the hype, it's going to taint my viewing. The hype in this case is positive, and most of it directed towards Hollywood bad-boy Mickey Rourke. Watching this film was like watching a balloon being filled with water. At what point will it explode and who's going to get wet? Rourke plays a wrestler--one of those fake wrestlers. I'm not a fan of wrestling and can't say much about it except this film is all about wrestling and has nothing to do with it. Does that make any sense? It should. It's the present day in New Jersey. Rourke has just finished wrestling to a small crowd. His body is wounded and sore. He crawls to his trailer park to find the manager locked him out for overdue rent. He sleeps the night in his van. The …

Cardio (6.0095)

Thursday, April 23, 2009 ...the routine seems to change the routine... Weights yesterday so cardio today.Yesterday I weighed in at 91.5 KB. I had the same measurement today. I haven't been at that weight in quite some time. My exercise and diet are working to lose fat and gain muscle. If you keep at it, eventually you'll see results, but the trick is to keep at it, day after day and month after month.Losing weight and getting fit is a long-life pursuit. You can't expect miracles from a few weeks of exercise.I try to follow a routine with my exercise, but as I try different things, it changes. These days my cardio day workout is now 30 minutes on the elliptical machine followed by stretching and six sets of stomach crunches. I figure I might as well do it.Stomach Crunches on Swiss Ball: 30 reps x 6 sets with 2KG medicine ball. Posted 2009/04/23 at 19h19ET in Exercise.

Persepolis (2007)

Thursday, April 23, 2009 Persepolis. Feature film. (2007, 96 mins) IMDB...an animation film with a powerful story and refreshing visuals... PERSEPOLIS is an animation film from France based on the life of its co-writer and co-director Marjane Satrapi. As a young girl in the 1970s, she grew up in Iran under the Shah. Saw the revolution that overthrew him and saw the rise of religious clerics who stamped out freedoms for women. As a teenager she lived in Vienna, returned to Iran, married, divorced and finally left for good and a new life in France. The story and images are compelling. It is refreshing to know a film can be made with hand drawings instead of bits of data in a computer. The title and cover images are not particularly inviting, but that shouldn't stop someone from watching this film. In watching the features on the DVD, I learned the film took a small army of artists to create the film over a three year period and yet the budget was only $7.5 million. That it was …

The Savages (2007)

Thursday, April 23, 2009 The Savages. Feature film. (2007, 114 mins) IMDB...old man in diapers... Savages refers to the name of the family. There's Lenny, an old and estranged father, and Wendy, his daughter, and Jon, his son. Lenny lives in Arizona with a girlfriend. She's as old as him--maybe older. Just as we "get to know her" she dies. With her death, Lenny has no place to stay. His children are called and asked to help. Jon travels from Buffalo and Wendy from NYC. What follows in the movie is how the two siblings deal with their estranged father and the impact it has on their lives. Wendy lives in Manhattan. We first meet her working in an office where instead of working for her employer, she steals office supplies, writes up applications for grants and uses the postage meter to mail her applications. She lives alone in a small apartment. A neighbour visits. His wife thinks he's out walking the dog, but instead he's fucking Wendy. Not only …

Weights (6.0087)

Wednesday, April 22, 2009 ...full weights workout... I've gotten used to the stomach crunches on the Swiss ball. I wonder if I shouldn't do more workouts with it.Lateral Back 27 kg x 25 reps x 3 setsVertical Back 27 kg x 25 reps x 3 setsStomach Crunches on Swiss Ball: 30 reps x 6 sets with 2KG medicine ball. Bicep Curls: 7kg x 25 reps x 6 sets Leg Lunges: 10 reps x 6 sets - Left/RightSquats: 10 reps x 6 sets.Posted 2009/04/22 at 18h41ET in Exercise.

Fried Green Tomatoes (1991)

Wednesday, April 22, 2009 Fried Green Tomatoes. Feature film. (1991, 130 mins) IMDB...you don't have to be a woman to enjoy this film, hating racist bastards helps... The title is unforgettable. I remember watching this film quite a number of years ago and a few images stuck, but for the most part I didn't remember the storyline. I remembered the scene with the bees. In watching it again this evening, it was clear the performer was dealing with the real thing. It was her and there were hundreds of bees swarming the tree, swarming her. In watching the feature with the DVD, it's not hard to see why it worked, but it's something few people could do. As with most wild animals, the best advice is to stay calm. They are more afraid of you than you are of them. Easy to say, but hard to do. In watching the feature, everybody suggested that fried green tomatoes were a Southern thing (southern US). I don't know where they get that. My mother made them with tomatoe…

Cardio (6.0078)

Tuesday, April 21, 2009 ...another change in my workout... Weights yesterday so it was a cardio only day today. My schedule was such that the earliest I could get to the gym was 18h and I thought about skipping it, but didn't. I did a hard 30 minutes on the elliptical machine followed by stretching. I've managed to get stretching in but added a twist--more stomach crunches. Apparently you can do those exercises everyday and decided to put some in. See how that goes.Stomach Crunches on Swiss Ball: 30 reps x 4 sets with 2KG medicine ball. Posted 2009/04/21 at 20h22ET in Exercise.

Lorenzo's Oil (1992)

Tuesday, April 21, 2009 Lorenzo's Oil. Feature film. (1992, 129 mins) IMDB...what an amazing story... Brilliant. Inspiring. An amazing story. I watched the film for the first time tonight and I'm glad I did. I'm surprised I hadn't watched it before, but that's how it goes. I assumed, based on my limited knowledge of the film, that it would be a downer--parents struggling with a terminally ill child, but that's only part of the story. It's the story of their determination against great odds to help their boy and in doing so find medical solutions and help other boys. We first meet Lorenzo Odone as a young boy playing and studying in the East African island-nation of Comoros. He's there with his parents because his father, Augusto, works for the World Bank. He's bright, playful, active--a typical boy. When the family relocates to Washington, DC, the boy acts up in school. Throws tantrums. At first no one knows what to make of it, but after …

Weights (6.0070)

Monday, April 20, 2009 ...what a surprise... Today was a weights day, chest and arms, and I did that but changed my stomach crunches because the bench I normally use was being repaired. I used a Swiss ball instead and was surprised at how much more intense it was. I couldn't do as many as my stomach muscles simply tightened up. I think I'll be using it in the future.Bench Press: 11kg x 25 reps x 3 setsInclined Bench Press: 11kg x 20 reps x 3 setsStomach Crunches on Swiss Ball: 15 reps x 3 sets and 20 reps x 5 sets with 2KG medicine ball. Bicep Curls: 7kg x 25 reps x 6 sets No Leg Lunges.No Squats.Posted 2009/04/20 at 19h22ET in Exercise.

The Crucible (1996)

Monday, April 20, 2009 The Crucible. Feature film. (1996, 124 mins) IMDB...what a disappointment... I was so disappointed in this film. Having read Arthur Miller's autobiography, I expected much more than what I saw. I never once got into the narrative. I simply didn't come alive for me and I'm not sure why.Posted 2009/04/20 at 19h22ET in Movie Commentary.

Mona Lisa (1986)

Monday, April 20, 2009 Mona Lisa. Feature film. (1986, 104 mins) IMDB...interesting characters, but is George really that stupid?... George gets out of prison and goes to his wife's home with a bouquet of flowers. He sees her and his teenaged daughter. The daughter doesn't know him. The mother screams and yells. He runs off in shame and becomes angry. We see he can be violent if he wants and one look at Bob Hoskins and you know he can be violent. His friend Thomas comes to the rescue. His next stop is to buy a white bunny rabbit and does. He takes it to his former boss played by Michael Caine except his boss is nowhere to be found. I'm not sure why a grown man would buy a bunny rabbit for another grown man. It's quite odd. The rabbit shows up in the climax and still I'm not sure what the hell it's supposed to represent. My only guess is that George is a bit dense and stupid. Maybe. Is George a reference to George in Steinbeck's OF MICE AND MEN…

The Rose Tattoo (1955)

Sunday, April 19, 2009 The Rose Tattoo. Feature film. (1955, 117 mins) IMDB...roses, roses and more roses... Not a lot happens in this film and a great deal happens. I say not a lot because the film can be summarized with a few points. Serafine Delle Rose lives in a house somewhere in the south with her husband and teenaged daughter. She's from Sicily and behaves and talks as we've come to expect from an Italian. Loud and passionate. Never holding back. She reveres her husband whom she calls the rose. His hair smells of roses from the rose oil and he has a rose tattoo on his chest. We never meet him. He was a Baron in Italy (or so we're told) but in the US he drives a truck. He seems to be involved in hauling something illegal and in the opening scenes dies when chased by police. His truck veers off the road and crashes. The wife is distraught from the news. At this point the film flashes forward three years. Serafina has closeted herself in the house. She doe…

Swimming and Weights (6.0113)

Saturday, April 18, 2009 ...I got in my swimming this week... There were no holidays this week to screw up my workout schedule and went to the gym for a swim except I ran errands before hand and was early. The pool isn't open for laps until 17h30. With 30 minutes to wait, I decided to go into the gym and do some bicep curls and stomach crunches.And again with nice weather, the place seemed vacantBicep Curls: 7kg x 25 reps x 3 sets Stomach Crunches: 30 reps x 4 sets with 2KG medicine ball. And stretching as always these days. It makes a difference.Posted 2009/04/18 at 19h30ET in Exercise.

Beaufort (2007)

Saturday, April 18, 2009 Beaufort. Feature film. (2007, 131 mins) IMDB...an anti-war film... If you're a Canadian like me, Beaufort means something that is very different from what it means in this film. There's the literal translation from French to English, there's the Beaufort Sea and, to my discovery, there's a legendary castle in Lebanon that dates back to the crusades. The film is about the later. The Israeli army controls this piece of land in Lebanon, but as the movie unfolds, control may be the wrong word. Soldiers live in a modern-day, fortified bunker on top a barren hill. It's steel and concrete and sand bags. Life inside is grim. Hygiene a luxury. They are surrounded by the enemy--an enemy we never see or get to know. Every hour mortars scream into the compound, land and explode. The men run for cover. To them, the mortars seem more like a nuisance--like putting up with black flies or mosquitoes. The men are solders. Always in full battle g…

Finian's Rainbow (1968)

Saturday, April 18, 2009 Finian's Rainbow. Feature film. (1968, 141 mins) IMDB...that old devil moon... A day ago if you had told me Francis Ford Coppola had directed a musical staring Fred Astaire I would have said you're nuts. It never happened. Well, he did and it's true. Surprise, surprise. The film is a big budget production of the Broadway musical of the same name. Since the musical started in the 1940s, why did it take so long to get to the big screen? The content. The story takes place in Kentucky where racists are as common as blue grass. The show pokes fun at these racists in a way that's fun and humourous. It's probably the best part of the film. But while this satire is fun, the best part is still the music and in particular the song OLD DEVIL MOON. When the song starts and you recognize it, it will transpose you to another world and for the moment when the song plays, time stands still and that's how it should be.Posted 2009/04/18 at 19h…

Weights (6.0105)

Friday, April 17, 2009 ...the weather was even better and fewer people came to the gym... It was a hot, summer-like day and even I thought about skipping my workout but I went. A weights day.Bench Press: 11kg x 25 reps x 3 setsBicep Curls: 7kg x 25 reps x 6 sets Tricep Presses: 14kg x 25 reps x 3 sets. Stomach Crunches: 30 reps x 6 sets with 2KG medicine ball. No Leg Lunges.No Squats.Posted 2009/04/17 at 18h21ET in Exercise.

Jurassic Park III (2001)

Friday, April 17, 2009 Jurassic Park III. Feature film. (2001, 92 mins) IMDB...here's a sequel that didn't need to get made unless you were cashing cheques... Figure out a way to get Dr. Grant back on the island with all those dinosaurs for a third time. How? Pretend to be exceedingly rich with a taste for adventure trips and tell him you only want to fly over the island. He wouldn't go near the place if he didn't need money to continue his field research. But once you're near the island land the plane so you can search for your missing son who is probably been processed through some dino's digestive track. Bring along a large cast so we can see them become dino snacks. Make sure the plane is cracked up beyond repair so they can't just fly out. Make sure the radio is kaput and the portable phones don't work. Now they are stuck on the island with dinos chasing after them. A few die. Some are scrapped up. Teo Leoni spends half the film screaming…

Night at the Museum (2006)

Friday, April 17, 2009 Night at the Museum. Feature film. (2006, 109 mins) IMDB...fun, fun, fun... Fun, fun, fun. The film has a trite plot, and follows the formula, but still it's fun. Laughs and adventure all confined to the Museum of Natural History in Manhattan. Stiller plays a dreamer who can't find his place in the world. He hopes his big idea will make him into something he isn't. His ex-wife has married a nerdy bond trader (Paul Rudd). He shares custody with their ten-year old son who doesn't want much to do with his flaky father. Hold up your hands if you've seen this before. Yes, I know, it's trite, but this film isn't meant to be provocative or insightful, it's meant to create laughs and it does. Desperate to maintain a relationship with his son, he looks for any work that will give him some stability and ends up as the night watchman at the History of Natural Museum. That would normally spell the end of any story because such a job …