Robert Wm. Gomez's

Welcome to Pages of Fun!

This is the personal Web site of Robert Wm. Gomez. I am an artist, musician and nerd living in Chicago, Illinois who has been maintaining this site (in one form or another) since 1996. Enjoy your visit!

Mister America (7/10)

If you haven't followed "On Cinema" on Adult Swim, I can't imagine appreciating this movie. If you're a fan, you will love this. It's ninety minutes of uncomfortable anti-humor in which Tim Heidecker presents himself as one of the most unlikable characters in cinema history. Cinema buffs like Gregg Turkington will immediately recognize that the mockumentary thing has been done many times before and much more effectively. There was a ton of potential here for satirizing the electoral process but it is mostly just a character study of an awful human being who never actually saw Sully. Would have been vastly improved by more On Cinema On Location expert historical analysis.

Assassin's Creed III on PC (4/10)

An Assassin's Crud Acheivement. Oh boy.

This game has been sitting in my to-do list for quite some time. I got it as a freebie from Uplay, and to be quite frank, that may have been too expensive for this clunker. I suppose if you really love the parkour mechanics of the other games you'll be entertained by this, but I am long-since over jumping from towers into bales of hay. With a handful of naval missions, some of the seeds of the vastly superior AC IV are here, but, to mix my metaphors, the mechanics still a bit half-baked (wait you can bake seeds, so maybe that metaphor works... or is it a simile).

The Horrible Dr. Hichcock (5/10)

This was directed by Riccardo Freda but I wouldn't be surprised if Bava had some behind the scenes role. It's the story of a doctor whose wife dies then the second wife is haunted by the first. I was just a little bored and confused by the whole thing.

Transferring Patches to a Yamaha DX100 with Sysex and a PC

Yamaha DX100 Cassette Connector CableOn this site, I had previously posted a set of 24 Yamaha DX100 synth patches for download. The DX is a notoriously difficult synthesizer to program. That difficulty extends to its load/save workflow as well. Originally, the DX100 came with a special cord with a MIDI-style plug on one end and three headphone-sized jacks on the other. This is meant to be plugged into a data cassette recorder. The red cable is audio out, the white is audio in, and the black (I assume) controls the tape player. You hit a button combo on the DX100 and then a screeching modem sound is output to the tape. Modern users can record this sound on a computer as a .WAV file and it will work the same as and old-school tape deck. This works okay, but there is a better way to archive and reload sounds.

Meet Sysex

Sysex stands for system exclusive and it's a part of the MIDI standard that allows synth manufacturers to define their own specific message formats. In our case it is useful because the DX100 uses sysex to store and retrieve patches. With some free software and a cheap hardware interface, you can easily store and retrieve synth sounds on your PC as both individual patches and a complete 24 patch bank.

Solo (6/10)

Well, at least it wasn't embarrassing. The movie exists as yet another way to try to give backstory to throwaway comments from the original films. The plot itself kind of kills Han's story arc in Star Wars and establishes him as a guy who was always good. Despite this and the abundance of fake video-game action sequences, I was mindlessly entertained.

Dolemite Is My Name (6/10)

Entertaining but hollow biopic about the early days of Rudy Ray More as played by Eddie Murphy. It's hard to see Eddie as anyone but Eddie Murphy. Also suffers from the usual Hollywood over-simplification of creative endeavors where the artist gets an idea and minutes later they are performing the final product that we are all familiar with (remember that scene in The Doors where the keyboardist comes up with  the main riff "Light My Fire" after noodling for two seconds).

Millennium Actress (7/10)

The follow-up to Perfect Blue is downright whimsical compared to its predecessor. There are still more grown-up themes than your typical anime, but, instead of knife murders and nudity, it's all about aging and unrealized dreams of one's youth. The main character is an elderly actress who is recounting her life to a pair of goofy documentary filmmakers. The film plays fast and loose with reality as movie roles are blended with real life.

Bone Tomahawk (9/10)

Western with a twist that shows its hand in the first frame of the movie but you very quickly forget about it as the characters are introduced. Then that final act.... yeesh. Filled with interesting dialogue and heroes you actually want to root for.

Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse (8/10)

If you read this Web site with any regularity (in reality that means nobody), you know that I am not a fan of superhero movies. The whole concept of superheroes is corny and when they try to make them serious it's just lame. Treating the subject as a kid-friendly fare is a much better approach, especially since Spider-Verse goes full-on animation. The exaggerated fantasy style just works (despite the annoying, intentional low-frame rate). In the end, it's just another origin story but with a comical, meta sensibility.

Voices from Beyond (5/10)

Well, you can generally count on Lucio Fulci for at least one fun scene in any movie he creates. The majority of Voices from Beyond is a dull murder mystery in which you get voice over from the deceased (not unlike Short Night of the Glass Dolls).  The guy who's murdered immediately comes off as a bit of a jerk, so you don't care about the murderer at all. The only good parts are some inserts of a decaying corpse and a character getting a plate of eyeballs.

Rosemary's Baby (8/10)

This is always getting cited as one of the best horror movies ever made. I was not impressed. Yes, it's a good movie as far as the story and acting goes, but it has a silly, lighthearted tone to it that negates any sense of terror or tension.