Saturday, December 27, 2008

Big Stars Big Budgets Small Payoff

My parents got me the Jurassic Park Adventure Pack for Christmas.  Did you know there was a Jurassic Park III?  Earlier tonight, I watched The Lost World, starring Jeff Goldblum and giving Vince Vaughn one of his earliest biggest roles.  I just finished watching the third (and apparently final) installment in the franchise, and I'm pretty shocked at some of the stars in here.  Of course, you have Sam Neill and a reprise of Laura Dern as Dr. Ellie Sattler, but you also have William H. Macy and Tea Leoni (first major role?) and, my personal favorite, Eduard Delacroix (credited as Michael Jeter for some reason).

While I was looking at the IMDB page, I noticed that Joe Johnston directed it.  That name should ring some bells.  He's only directed 11 movies, but that hit list includes:

I can see a lot of parallels between HISTK, Jumanji, and JP3.  He was supposed to direct the eagerly anticipated JP4, but that apparently fell through with the passing of the revered Mr. Crichton.

By the way, if you haven't seen (or didn't know there even was a) Jurassic Park III, give up hope.  It's pretty good until the last 10 minutes.  It's like they hit the 74-minute mark and ran out of money or something.  The Navy/Marines do a quick amphibious landing just as Dr. Grant et al. wander out onto the beach.  Then boom---the credits roll.  Which is sad because for 74 minutes, I really thought this could be a great movie.

The Jurassic Park series sadly falls into that much too large category of series that should have remained single stories.

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

You Don't Mess with the Number 23

Based on this review, Yes Man sounds like Adam Sandler's nostalgia-induced run as Zohan. I think the two actors are actually pretty similar. Both got their starts on comedy skit shows. Both made their names doing inane comedies. And both are stellar actors who can do so much more than just zany comedy. My personal favorite Carrey movies are The Majestic and Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind.  (The latter may be my favorite movie of all time.) And as for Sandler, his role in I Now Pronounce You Chuck and Larry, lacking his usual over-the-top humor, was great. Don't get me wrong, I love Liar, Liar and Mr. Deeds, but . . . Maybe these two guys should move on and start keep making real, good movies?

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

This is why we love him

Greg Maddux has retired.  Everybody in baseball loved him, or should have.  Except Yankees fans:

In fact, perhaps the biggest decision of Maddux's career also came at the winter meetings, when he spurned a higher offer from the New York Yankees for a five-year deal with Atlanta during the December 1992 session in Louisville, Ky.

And that is why we love him.

Monday, December 01, 2008

New Love

I always think it's hokie when people say "I just want to try cases."  But I think I just want to try cases.  During Practice Court, I've had the opportunity to try four cases from opening to close.  I have to say that it's about the funnest thing I've ever done.  I say "about" because, let's face it, sitting around playing Mario Kart is a lot funner than researching the ambiguities of Rule 106 or chapter 74.  But trying cases is still one of the funnest things I've ever done.

And I've won at least three of my cases (the jury's still out on the fourth), and hearing the verdict read in your favor . . . it's nice to win now and again.

UPDATE: I won my last trial (Monday night) and advanced to the octafinals of the Top Gun Tournament.  I tried my case again this afternoon.  Jury is still out but I'll know later tonight.

UPDATE II:  The jury came back on Wednesday and handed me my first loss.  4-1.  Not bad.  I fought hard, but I guess not hard enough.