Saturday, December 15, 2012

Christmas Movie Marathon - Day 1

Was up late last night visiting with friends but I knew I had to be up fairly early to get the turkey in the oven. So I got up around 8:30am and went out to the kitchen to start breakfast. Anthony joined me and continued with the breakfast (pancakes) and Brett and I went on to prep the turkey for cooking.

Anthony, Michele, Dallas, Brett, and I played some Yahtzee and then a game of Cards Against Humanity. Josh slept in.

At noon we started with our first Christmas movie Home Alone. Jes arrived around 1ish and we paused the movie to make some mash potatoes and finish prepping the rest of the side dishes. Aaron & Anne arrived just as we were about to eat Christmas dinner which was around 2pm.. I bit earlier then I had planned but we were all hungry and the food was ready.

After we ate we exchanged gifts and I got some pretty nice things including a framed poster of Middle Earth which is pretty awesome.

After four hours we finally finished watching Home Alone. More guests arrived, Teresa, Will, Luis and Jennifer and we moved on to Love Actually and then our final movie of the night While You Were Sleeping (which isn't really a Christmas movie but it's my all time favorite romantic comedy).

It was a great day hanging with friends, playing games and watching some good movies.

And the Christmas movie marathon continues tomorrow.

Friday, December 14, 2012

Hobbitses & Friends

The Hobbit Gang

Today is all about The Hobbit.

The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey opens today. Though I had seen it twice already this was the big day that I had purchased tickets for back in November. But before going to the movies I got another screener and its the one I was looking forward to getting this movie season.. yep you guessed it.. I got The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey. I was super excited to have gotten this as I plan to watch it over and over again.

For opening night I had planned to dress up in my Hobbit cosplay but because of all the stress of editing podcasts, prepping for this upcoming party, getting ready for Montana and the fact that we weren't really waiting in line for the movie I didn't see all the effort that goes into getting into costume was worth it. I kind of regret it as I enjoy dressing up and there weren't anyone else there dressed up so I would have stood out.

The time came for me to leave the house so I got in the jeep, started it up and noticed that my oil pressure gauge was going crazy. It's normally in the middle on 40 and moves very little. But as soon as I turned on the jeep it went directly up to 80.. I don't know what it means but it can't be good. I turned back around and went home to check the engine. I noticed oil on the engine block but I had to get going. I was the one with all the tickets so I took a chance and drove about 30 miles to the theater.

I got there with no major issues.. the oil pressure gauge was all over the place but everything seemed okay. I got there a bit earlier then I had planned so I went to the theater to get individual tickets printed out so I could give each person their own ticket and we don't have to wait for everyone to be there to sit down.

Slowly but surely one by one my friends showed up. We got some concessions and then headed into the theater. Everyone seemed to be very happy with their seats, which made me happy. I was still waiting on two people, Josh & Justin. I waited outside for as long as I could before finally leaving the tickets with the ticket taker and going in and taking seat.

So this is my third time watching The Hobbit.. this time like my first time I watched the movie in 3D HFR (48 fps) and I have to say that I enjoyed it much more this time around then I did my first time. I don't know if I was just use to it or the fact that it was my third time watching the movie. The crispness didn't bother me as much. There were still a few scenes where the CG looked like CG. But I still loved it and all of the folks I watched it with enjoyed it.

It also had this new audio configuration.. Dolby Atmos. there are like 40+ speakers in the walls completely surrounding the seating and then 18 overhead in the ceiling.. the sound is amazing!!!

Afterwards I found out that Josh, who did arrived 25 minutes late, was not allowed in.. this theater won't allow people into the theater after the movie has started. He wound up watching a later showing. Justin was MIA. But later found out that he just couldn't make it.

It was a lot of fun and I'm happy to say that even with this large group of people, everything worked out great (with exception to Josh).

I did manage to make it home safely, I think it's time to get a new car. I won't put anymore money into my Jeep... will need to resolve this when I get back from Montana.

Since I'm having my mini Christmas movie marathon tomorrow several folks who were at the Hobbit opening night decided to crash at my place.. so joining me tonight was Josh, Dallas, Brett, Anthony and Michele.

Thursday, December 13, 2012

Shopping, Cleaning & KOTG

Spent half of my day finishing up my Christmas shopping and making my Christmas gifts. And the other half cleaning the house up and getting ready for this weekend for my mini Christmas movie marathon. Today is really my last day to get these things done. I really wanted to get a new Confessions of a Fanboy edited but just couldn't find the time or motivation to get it done.

So though I did get things done today.. I didn't do as much as I would like.

I also released the Knights of the Guild podcast that I finished edited late last night. This episode is the final installment of the "I'm The One That's Cool" music video interviews.. for this episode I interview Jeff Lewis, Amy Okuda, Vince Caso, Various Crew Members and the one and only Felicia Day.

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Screeners, Podcasts and Buffy

Today is 12/12/12.. how cool is that.

I got several screeners today. Silver Lining Playback, Zero Dark Thirty and Lincoln. Never heard of Sliver Lining Playback and barely know what Zero Dark Thirty is.. but the one I really wanted to see and was super excited to get a screener of was Lincoln. I'm a huge Sally Fields fan so I'm really looking forward to seeing her.

I worked on the next Knights of the Guild podcast. I gotta get these done before I head off to Montana for the end of December. Should have to done and ready to be released by tomorrow.

During the evening I headed to my buddy Robert's place for Dinner and Buffy. Still working through season 3 and watched Helpless, The Zeppo and Bad Girls.  Helpless was a really good episode, it was cool to see Buffy have to be Buffy without her powers. I did think that she forgave Giles a little to quickly but I was a good relationship builder between the two of them.

The Zeppo was an interesting episode. The main story revolved around Zander and his shenanigans and the background story was the hell mouth opening up again and the team (except Xander) saving the world. It was kind of funny yet very odd that this big event happened and we did not follow it as the main action.  I'm not a huge fan of Xander but I didn't mind him so much in this episode.

Bad Girls is the beginning of the downward spiral that Faith takes in season 3. We get introduced Wesley as Buffy's new watcher and we get to see a different side of Buffy. Big changes are coming to Buffy and this is just the beginning..

So today was a good day.. got some screeners, got a podcast done and spent the ending watching Buffy with one of my favorite people.

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Disneyland With My Buddies

Today I went to Disneyland with my buddies Brett and Troy. This all started with Brett tweeting that he needed to go to Disneyland soon. I responded with "when". So we planned it out and I put it out there on Twitter that I was going and my friend Troy said he wanted to join us.

So I got to the park at 10am and made my way to Downtown Disney where Brett was waiting for me. My annual pass expired in August and I have been waiting for renew it until I went back.. so today is the day. I renewed my premium annual pass for another year.

We headed to Disneyland first and our first ride was Star Tours as the wait was only 5 minutes, we then went over to Space Mountain to get a fast pass but it was only a 10 minute wait so we rode that next. We did stop by Star Tours and grabbed a fast pass for that to ride later in the day. We were hungry and it's kind of a tradition for me when I go to Disneyland to get a Corn Dog or two from the Little Red Wagon. It's been a while since Brett had a corn dog and was up for it so we headed over and grabbed some lunch. While we were eating my buddy Troy called and said he was on his way. So we waited for him before heading back out into the park.

I'm not going to go ride by ride.. but we walked around both Disneyland and Disney California Adventures for the next 10 hours. Some highlights were walking pass The Indiana Jones ride which I was told was going to be closed down until the new year, I was bummed as it's one of my favorite rides... but when we walked by there was a line, so we grabbed a fast pass and later in the evening, we rode it. Another cool things was that I never knew about the Winnie the Pooh ride until my friend Troy asked if I had ever ridden it... so we rode that. The park was not busy at all.. I think the longest line we stood in was 20 minutes.  It was awesome seeing both parks all decked out for Christmas. And seeing Car's Land all Christmas-fied for the first time was pretty cool. And for our final ride of the evening we did Radiator Spring Racers. I've only done them one other time and when we did it we didn't race anyone, which was a bummer. But this time we did race and it was so much fun... we won btw.

It was a fun filled day spent at one of the happiest places on Earth with two good friends.. couldn't ask for anything more.

Monday, December 10, 2012

Podcasts and Hobbits

Started my day off by trying to get the new episode of Alien Nation posted. Podbean is changes servers and they are suppose to be down for the day.. guess this podcast will be delayed a day.

I spend the next few hours edited my next My Gimpy Life podcast #9, it's not due to be released until Jan 2nd but since I'll be in Montana I have to get these podcasts done and uploaded so they can be released on time.

Went out shopping for supplies for my "hand made" Christmas gifts but atlas couldn't find what I needed.

The big thing that happened today is that I went out to see another advance screening of The Hobbit An Unexpected Journey for a 2nd time. This time I was going with my buddy Robert. I was also seeing it in 2D instead of 3D HFR which I was looking forward to that since I really didn't like the HFR.

The screening was happening in Hollywood at the Harmony Gold Theater. Robert and I got there about an hour and a half early (can never predict traffic). We grabbed a bite to eat and then made our way to the theater. When we got there there were only a few people in there so we got some prime seats in the middle, middle. Sitting in front of us was this young man named Shane. We struck up a conversation and when it was over both Robert and I looked at each other and said, wow we feel very inadequate. This guy has done so much in his short time on Earth, the biggest having walked from the tip of Scotland to the southern part of Italy. It took him over 4 months but man did he have some fantastic stories. You could tell he was a writer.  Wish I would have gotten his info as I would have loved to stay in contact with him, but it was kind of odd since I literally just met him.

Anyways the movie started and I have to say I actually enjoyed the movie so much more in 2D. Not once did one of the effect take me out of that world. I also think I enjoyed the movie the second time more because I knew what to expect. I mean I knew where they made changes, where the movie ended and what to expect. I could just sit back and enjoy it this time and I did.. very much.

Robert enjoyed it as well and I'm glad I was able to see it with him as we just experience LOTR EE marathon a few days prior.

All in all it was a great experience and lots of fun. You can read my 1st review of The Hobbit to get more details and my thoughts about the movie. You can check it out here

Editing and Releasing Podcasts

Today I worked on the next episode of My Gimpy Life. It's not due to be released until Jan 2nd 2013 but since I'll be gone the last two week of December and unable to edit podcasts I'm trying to get everything done that is due to be released during that time.

Took me about two hours but I got it done, uploaded and ready to go. Still have a KOTR, Confessions and MASH podcast to do before I leave next Tuesday.

I did manage to release a new episode of my Alien Nation The Newcomers Podcast Ep 12.

Download from itunes or Listen/Direct Download

Show Notes

Brothers Kenny and Michael Mittleider review and discuss a short lived but very socially aware TV series from the late 80's early 90's ALIEN NATION. Each podcast we will review a single episode in sequential order starting with the Pilot. Will give you our thoughts on the episode as well as some fun behind the scenes information.

Today we cover Season 1, Episode 12 - The Red Room

Directed by Chuck Bowman
Written by Steven Long Mitchell & Craig Van Sickle
Original air date December 18, 1989

Plot Summary: George and Sikes investigate a series of murders, but are removed from the case when the FBI becomes involved and claims jurisdiction. "Project Dart" is discussed and the words have a powerful impact on George, who is haunted by the dim recollections of something horrible. Through hypnosis, he reveals that while in quarantine after the Newcomers landed on Earth, he and a group of fellow Tenctonese were brainwashed by the United States government to be made into perfect killing machines. The "programming" didn't work on George, who had an ethical imprint they couldn't not penetrate, but one of those machines has decided now to fight back against the people pulling the strings, exterminating them one by one.

While all this is going on, Sikes tries to avoid a mandatory psychological examination because he doesn't want to allow anyone to get that close to him (which is actually part of his problem in relating to Cathy). George, on the other hand, looks forward to the exam, though he's disappointed by the resulting conclusion; he's a control freak

Hope you enjoy it,

Sunday, December 9, 2012

Sunday with my BFF

After the awesome day we had yesterday we didn't want it to end so my buddy Robert crashed at my place last night so we could hang all day today.

I had planned to record some MASH 4077 podcasts this morning but one of my co-hosts had to cancel (so it kind of worked out for the better for us).

We got up, I made us some breakfast and then we jumped into our Holiday movie marathon. Robert watches these three movies every year and since he can't make it to my Christmas party (boo) we decided to celebrate "our" Christmas today. So our first movie of the day was A Christmas Story. This is a classic and one I normally watch on TV since it airs all the time during the holidays. For those who live under a rock and have never seen A Christmas Story here is a brief synopsis. Ralphie, a young boy growing up in the '40's, dreams of owning a Red Rider BB gun. He sets out to convince the world this is the perfect gift. But along the way, he runs into opposition from his parents, his teacher, and even good 'ol Santa Claus himself.

I wouldn't put this in my top 5 Christmas movie list but it's defiantly in the top 10 and a must see every year.  It's funny and ridiculous, it's heartfelt and over the top but it's such a good time. I give this movie a solid B +

After that we watched Christmas Vacation. I was happy to see that this was one of the movies Robert wanted to watch as I had never seen it before (I know how is that possible), but none the less it's true. I enjoyed Vacation and European Vacation so I was looking forward to this. Here's a brief synopsis. It's Christmas time and the Griswolds are preparing for a family seasonal celebration, but things never run smoothly for Clark, his wife Ellen and their two kids. Clark's continual bad luck is worsened by his obnoxious family guests, but he manages to keep going knowing that his Christmas bonus is due soon.

I really enjoyed this movie. I felt bad for Clark as he tries so hard to make this the perfect Christmas but things just never go his way. It was fun to see the very young Johnny Galecki who I know from Rosanne and currently as Leonard from The Big Bang Theory. This movie is the perfect Chevy Chase movie, lot's of slapstick but with heart. It does end on a happy note but this is a Christmas the Griswolds will not soon forget. I give this movie a solid B +

After Christmas Vacation we headed out to grab some lunch at Chili's and then stop by Walmart so I could pick up some pictures I had developed.

Once back home I asked Robert if he could help me cut my hair, and when I say cut my hair I mean save my head with the hair clippers. I can normally do it by myself but it's always hard to get the back hair trimmed. It's one thing I miss about having a partner. Anyways he did it and I now have a new do.

After that we watched our final Christmas movie for the day Die Hard. This is one of my all time favorite action movies but I wouldn't say it's a movie that I need to watch every Christmas. Here's brief synopsis if for some reason you don't know the movie. New York City Detective John McClane has just arrived in Los Angeles to spend Christmas with his wife. Unfortunately, it is not going to be a Merry Christmas for everyone. A group of terrorists, led by Hans Gruber is holding everyone in the Nakatomi Plaza building hostage. With no way of anyone getting in or out, it's up to McClane to stop them all. All 12!

As I said this is one of my favorite all time action movies. It's funny, action packed and tense. Not my typical Christmas movie but I love seeing it anytime of the year and it was a nice way to end our mini Christmas marathon. A perfect A for this movie.

I made some spaghetti for dinner and for dessert I broke into one of my boxes of Twinkies, as Robert hasn't had one in a while and each Twinkie is like gold and I'm only eating them and giving them to those worthy of it.. and Robert is so worthy of one of my Twinkies.

Next up Robert wanted to show me this new game he has been playing called XCom. So we fired up the Xbox and I watched and participate as we played for an hour. It's a fun game.

We went back to movie watching and decided to watch one of my screeners. We selected two Skyfall and This is 40 and ultimately decided to go with the comedy This is 40. Here's a synopsis of the movie. Debbie and Pete—a couple first seen in Knocked Up—continue to fight their way through their marriage. The growing financial troubles from Pete's new record label adds to the pressure.

I enjoyed this movie, it's a comedy/drama but from the commercials you'd never guess it's more drama then comedy. It's a look at two people kind of going through some midlife crisis at the same time. All the "usual" players are in it from the previous comedies like Knocked Up and I Love You Man. It's defiantly an adult movie. There is some crass humor which I normally don't enjoy but can take it here and there. I'm a huge fan of Paul Rudd and really enjoyed his performance even though I may not have agreed with some of his actions (Robert and I disagree on what he did). Over all an enjoyable movie for what it is. I'd give it a B-

After the movie Robert packed up his stuff and headed home. What a fantastic weekend, not only because of the things I did but because I got to spend it with one of my most favorite people in the world... love you buddy.