Robert Wm. Gomez's

December 2012

The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey (9/10)

I loved the Lord of the Rings movies so I realize I have a huge bias towards liking this no matter what. So, yes, I loved this movie. I looks much better than LOTR and the acting is much improved too. The story is not as strong though. It feels padded with a little too much reliance on flashback, and, as usual, I would have liked to see less CGI creatures and more latex. Can't wait for part two.

Minecraft: The Story of Mojang (6/10)

Although, as someone who has played a ton of Minecraft, I did enjoy watching this documentary about its creator(s). But the flim really is lacking. When it was all done, I didn't feel like I learned anything new about Minecraft, indy-game development or Notch himself. There's a sequence where Minecraft is being used in a classroom, but there is no effort to show why the game is so unique in that environment. It's just a bunch of kids and teachers telling us how much the kids like to play Minecraft in class.

Death Wish (9/10)

I can't believe I went through the 80's without ever seeing this movie or any of its sequels. Charles Bronson is great from the get go when we see him luxuriating on the beach in a Speedo, to scenes of him doing architecture stuff with big old man glasses, and then to the scenes of him blowing away dirtbags and street scum. I was never quite sure if the film is intended to be a darkly critical characterization of law and order conservatism or just a straight up revenge film where you are supposed to root for the anti-hero.

At Action Park by Shellac (10/10)

Format: 
CD

One of the best indie rock records released after I stopped caring about indie rock. Every Shellac album is worth owning. but they tend to all sound about the same. At Action Park remains their best work. The songs are loud, precise and to the point. No twelve minute long bouts of self-indulgence here.

Sport Fishin' - The Lure of the Bait, The Luck of the Hook by Shadowy Men on a Shadowy Planet (9/10)

Format: 
CD

The final Shadowy Men album sounds much better than its predecessors thanks mostly to Albini's roomy recording style. However, I don't like this one quite as much as the previous two. The songs are perhaps a little less catchy? A little too serious? I'm not sure. Still, it's Shadowy Men so there really isn't much to complain about.

Death Walks At Midnight (8/10)

Also known as La Morte Accarezza a Mezzanotte, this is more of a Italian police story rather than straight up giallo. The cover art would suggest that this is nonstop wall to wall spiked-fist punching. Sadly, the spiked-fist punching is limited to one or two brief (although crucial) scenes. The movie opens with a silly drug use experiment that leads to hallucinogenic visions of the aforementioned spiked-fist punching murder. Our main character then spends the rest of the movie trying to find out what it was that she saw.

Dim the Lights, Chill the Ham by Shadowy Men on a Shadowy Planet (10/10)

Format: 
CD

Not much to say here. Another great collection of instrumental perfection from Shadowy Men.

The Joy of Hate: How to Triumph over Whiners in the Age of Phony Outrage by Greg Gutfeld (8/10)

Gutfeld's latest is a bit more focused than his last book. The primary theme of the book is that people who say they are tolerant are the most intolerant people when it comes to opposing political viewpoints. His focus is primarily on liberals but he does pay some lip service to conservative outrage as well (but not much). Again, I think Gutfeld is better heard rather than read, but I'd still recommend this book if you like funny conservative/libertarian political commentary.