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Age of Empires III Heaven » Forums » The Saloon (Off Topic) » From The Bathroom Wall: Saloon Book (and Film) Thread 2
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Topic Subject:From The Bathroom Wall: Saloon Book (and Film) Thread 2
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Von Mackensens Hat
Skirmisher
(id: DrNick)
posted 05-05-10 12:32 PM EDT (US)         
So Dio informed me on Facebook that the old book thread was destickied. I went to post in it and ask why and then found out it was archived as well.

Pretty sure that's some major bullshit right there. So I started this one. I expect it to be stickied ASAP. TIA.

Content:

So what are you reading right now?

I'm rereading Democracy by Joan Didion. It's a book with great atmosphere and a lot of fun Politics vis a vis the end of the Vietnam war. I highly recommend it.

Dr Nick
I never forget a face, but in your case I'll be glad to make an exception.
AuthorReplies:
Meteora
Skirmisher
posted 09-10-10 05:52 PM EDT (US)     76 / 171       
what kind of ethnography? and is that an undergrad class?

I really enjoyed A Farewell to Arms but I was looking for a reason to love it and I never found one. the prose was nice and very hemingway (obv) but i'm rarely one to enjoy a book for that reason alone (the exception being a clockwork orange where it was the only reason the book was enjoyable). the dialogue is always weird but at times charming. maybe that's how people talk in italian and he was trying to maintain that feel in english or something.

what did you like so much about it, rick? i wish dio were here to talk about it too because he's said it's one of his favorite books. i went into it with this in mind and really planned on falling in love with it, but it never happened.

★ ★ ★ ★ ★
Von Mackensens Hat
Skirmisher
(id: DrNick)
posted 09-10-10 07:06 PM EDT (US)     77 / 171       
Mostly the descriptions. I really like the scene where they're shooting the officers on the bridge. I've noticed that the dialog in Hemmingway books are typically direct translations of the native language (take For Whom the Bell Tolls for instance).

Dr Nick
I never forget a face, but in your case I'll be glad to make an exception.
Meteora
Skirmisher
posted 09-17-10 07:06 PM EDT (US)     78 / 171       
things like descriptions or skillful prose rarely do anything for me. i never read a book and think, "man, those descriptions made the book." in fact more often then not i skim over them as fast as possible to get to the important parts (at least what i think are the important parts). maybe that's why hemingway never resonates with me (based on the two books of his i've read).

i'm reading a book called Killing Rommel right now about british special forces in north africa in world war ii or something. it's okay so far. i've always liked the author, though as i mature (or not) a lot of things in his books reek of warrior hero worship or something and it can turn me off (in high school i reveled in stuff like that i guess). but still i usually love his characters and when he doesn't try to get to cutesy with the narrative he's great.

i'm reading the next book in the stieg larsson series once my mom finished it. hopefully it's as good as the last. she says all the annoying things from the first one are back though. like pointless inventories of laptop specifications.

★ ★ ★ ★ ★
Thomas Sterns
Skirmisher
posted 09-28-10 02:52 PM EDT (US)     79 / 171       
what kind of ethnography? and is that an undergrad class?
My ethnography is on the Sami people of Lapland. Basically we're suppose to look at the food methods, the presence of violence, and the effects of larger organizational structures upon substance societies. It's for Anthropology 4009: On War, and Evolution. It's my favourite class by far. We meet for fifty minutes three times a week, and discuss our assigned essays(which range from five to thirty pages). It's a real good time. Well, it's actually just alright. There are about twenty students in the class, and in order to get points you need to speak, but still only about ten students contribute anything, and of that only five actually contribute worthwhile opinions. The professor is prace though, and pr much makes the class. He complimented me last wednesday, and on monday for my thoughts.
things like descriptions or skillful prose rarely do anything for me. i never read a book and think, "man, those descriptions made the book." in fact more often then not i skim over them as fast as possible to get to the important parts (at least what i think are the important parts). maybe that's why hemingway never resonates with me (based on the two books of his i've read).
Oh, well if that's the case you'll never love Ernest. Ernest is all about his descriptions. The scenes he depicts resonate the entire mood of the situation moreso than any dialogue does. That's why he's so ****ing great.

"In my beginning is my end. In my end is my beginning."
Meteora
Skirmisher
posted 10-25-10 05:26 PM EDT (US)     80 / 171       
so recently i read killing rommel which was okay but really pretty unimpressive.

also read girl who played with fire and that was pretty dumb.

dick's divine invasion was pretty good for the first half but ended up being kind of mediocre. easy to read though unlike some of his stuff.

i'm at a total loss for what to read now. i have some books i need to get to but i don't really feel like any of them right now. i'm kinda looking for something non-fiction to mix things up but i don't have anything compelling on that front.
My ethnography is on the Sami people of Lapland. Basically we're suppose to look at the food methods, the presence of violence, and the effects of larger organizational structures upon substance societies.
that sounds like a cool class. i miss studying anthropology so much.

if you have to read any ethnographies that are cool let me know because i still like to read them on my own. last one i read was called the reindeer people, which was about modern eveny people in eastern siberia. fascinating stuff. was assigned for a class along time ago, and i bought the book but ended up dropping the class so i didn't end up reading it until last year.

★ ★ ★ ★ ★

[This message has been edited by Meteora (edited 10-25-2010 @ 05:32 PM).]

Meteora
Skirmisher
posted 11-02-10 01:53 PM EDT (US)     81 / 171       
so () i just read An Omnivore's Dilemma. it was actually really interesting, except for the last part, which was just a little silly. basically it's about food and stuff, mostly about how we get our food in an industrialized society. it's not all fast food nation or the jungle or anything like that, although it is pretty critical at times. basically he creates four meals, all of which are derived from different food chains in our society, and then traces them through their entire journey all the way to his plate, where he then goes into a lengthy and boring discussion about how he cooks them and finally gives final thoughts about each meal. i didn't explain it well but whatever. the first one is a pure industrial meal, where he starts on a corn field in iowa, visits a corn processing plant, a feedlot for steer, etc. and then eats a meal at mcdonalds while assessing the final costs of the meal and other thoughts about its effects on our health and its sustainability. he does something similar for an 'organic industrial' meal, starting at an organic lettuce farm in the central valley and also visiting a 'free range' chicken farm in petaluma. then he looks at a sustainable 'grass' farm and eats a meal from stuff gown there. lastly he makes a meal solely by hunting/gathering his own ingredients (he cheats a little) and offers his thoughts on that. it was all pretty cool, though like i said part was boring.

right now i'm reading a scanner darkly. it's pretty good. dick is really hit or miss, mostly miss, but this seems to be one of his good ones like do android's dream and man in the high castle.

★ ★ ★ ★ ★
General_II
Skirmisher
posted 11-08-10 01:32 AM EDT (US)     82 / 171       
Finished with *Lanterns on the Levee: Recollections of a Planter's Son* the other day. The actual writing is dry, but the subject matter is somewhat interesting. Well, kind of. It's a memoir by William Percy, who is your quintessential rich white Southerner during the early to mid 20th century. He's raised in the Miss Delta, studies and fights in Europe, and (though you won't read it specifically in the book) is instrumental, with his father LeRoy, in making the Great Flood of 1927 the nation's worst flood to date. Horribly racist and yet fond of certain blacks, somewhat sexist, and with a soft spot for poor whites, I don't know if there's a better embodiment of Cash's Southern man. Don't really recommend it unless you want to read between the lines, so to speak.

[This message has been edited by General_II (edited 11-08-2010 @ 08:48 PM).]

Meteora
Skirmisher
posted 11-16-10 07:04 PM EDT (US)     83 / 171       
a scanner darkly was okay but got a little unfocused as it went on. i liked it though

reading the dark bride by laura restrepo and it's taking forever for some reason. i read half of it in an english class two years ago but now i want to try to finish it

also reading story by robert mckee which seems pretty enlightening but we'll see

★ ★ ★ ★ ★
Meteora
Skirmisher
posted 01-11-11 02:05 AM EDT (US)     84 / 171       
my movie thread got archived and i don't feel like making a new thread or anything so let me just use this. i saw a lot of movies since i last updated so i'll never remember them all but here are a few

dr strangelove. pretty cool, older movie which is rare for me

being there. cuz of the old thread in od. i really liked it

country strong. saw it in the theatres with my grandparents and thought it was rather mediocre

true grit. the new one and it was really good. also saw it in the theatres

scott pilgrim etc. loved it which i did not expect. really loved it.

2001 space odyssey. really wanted to appreciate it because of its status but let's face it it was pretty lame. the book was lame too.

leaves of grass. edward norton whom i really like. was a decent movie but for some reason i'm not really impressed by it

up in the air. was good in the beginning but really petered out and ended up being quite lame.

robin hood. didn't enjoy it at all.

bottle rocket. same complaint as up in the air. i felt like they filmed this without any screenplay whatsoever

i feel like i'm forgetting a few but who cares?

also since this is the book thread let me give you a few books i've read since i last posted here:

the dark bride. i liked it. pretty language and pretty story but wasn't life-changing or anything. a bit hard to get through because there's more anecdotes than central story

stardust. liked it but that's all. it was cute. should have ended without an epilogue, though maybe that's not the fairy tale format

wind up bird chronicles. enjoyed it but it was too long for me. the wwii stories got tedious.

the elephant vanishes. some great stories in here. a few of them had me literally laughing out loud, including one where a couple holds up a mcdonalds for 50 big macs. but they weren't comedic stories either so they're worth reading for more than laughs.

the ox bow incident. loved this book. didn't expect to like it very much. it was a bit heavy handed though so i could see a lot of people hating it or at least being put off. but it still worked in my opinion.

a stir of echoes by matheson. fun, short read and a little creepy but nothing noteworthy.

2001 space odyssey. really lame. and unlike the movie you don't get any street cred for having read it.

★ ★ ★ ★ ★
Maffia
AoE3H Seraph
(id: fred_ernie)
posted 01-12-11 02:49 PM EDT (US)     85 / 171       
Was about to mistake up in the air for Up .

Which Robin Hood did you watch?

This month I have mostly been playing Dishonored Death of the Outsider and Darkest Dungeon
Steam - Maffia GFWL - Maffia01 YouTube - HGMaffia Twitter - @HGMaffia
Age of Empires 3 Heaven Seraph

What is this life if, full of care, We have no time to stand and stare.
[This message hasn't been edited by fred_ernie (or Maffia) (not edited 12-29-2005 @ 09:57 AM).]
Meteora
Skirmisher
posted 01-12-11 09:16 PM EDT (US)     86 / 171       
New one with r Crowe.

I've actually been meaning to see up but I've yet to get around to it.

★ ★ ★ ★ ★
Maffia
AoE3H Seraph
(id: fred_ernie)
posted 01-13-11 08:19 AM EDT (US)     87 / 171       
I don't I've seen that Robin Hood, last one I think I saw had Morgan Freeman in.

As for Up, I really enjoyed it, obviously going in with the understanding that it is a predominantly a kids film , and as my ability to write reviews is generally limited to my ability to say whether I liked it or not I will stop there.

A couple of other films that I have enjoyed recently (well over the past 6-9ish months)
Law Abiding Citizen
Shutter Island
Inception
I also liked The Men Who Stare at Goats, I know its been widely paned, but I enjoyed it for what it was.

Didn't like Harry Brown much when I saw it though.

This month I have mostly been playing Dishonored Death of the Outsider and Darkest Dungeon
Steam - Maffia GFWL - Maffia01 YouTube - HGMaffia Twitter - @HGMaffia
Age of Empires 3 Heaven Seraph

What is this life if, full of care, We have no time to stand and stare.
[This message hasn't been edited by fred_ernie (or Maffia) (not edited 12-29-2005 @ 09:57 AM).]

[This message has been edited by Maffia (edited 01-13-2011 @ 08:20 AM).]

Maffia
AoE3H Seraph
(id: fred_ernie)
posted 01-13-11 03:00 PM EDT (US)     88 / 171       
I also watched the last Shrek over Christmas, and while I didn't think it was as good as some of the previous ones I didn't think it was too bad for a fourth instalment.

This month I have mostly been playing Dishonored Death of the Outsider and Darkest Dungeon
Steam - Maffia GFWL - Maffia01 YouTube - HGMaffia Twitter - @HGMaffia
Age of Empires 3 Heaven Seraph

What is this life if, full of care, We have no time to stand and stare.
[This message hasn't been edited by fred_ernie (or Maffia) (not edited 12-29-2005 @ 09:57 AM).]
General_II
Skirmisher
posted 01-13-11 03:34 PM EDT (US)     89 / 171       
Hey mete if you're still doing the streaming from netflix thing here are a few that are on there that you might try out:

Jackie Brown (older Tarantino movie)
Yojimbo (Japanese movie that inspired Fistful of Dollars, if you like it there's a sequel, Sajuro, that I kinda thought was cooler than the original)

Plus there are a few noted foreigners like The Bicycle Thief, A Prophet, and The Seven Samurai. I currently have High and Low, Men Who Stare at Goats, and the Redux Apocalypse Now (said to be worse than the edited original though; both are there) on the queue. Also saw the new Star Trek on there but meh. All the seasons of a Bit of Fry and Laurie are also on there which is rather entertaining.

[This message has been edited by General_II (edited 01-13-2011 @ 03:35 PM).]

Maffia
AoE3H Seraph
(id: fred_ernie)
posted 01-13-11 05:28 PM EDT (US)     90 / 171       
I can never get Bobby Womack out my head for a few days after watching Jackie Brown, very good film as General says.

This month I have mostly been playing Dishonored Death of the Outsider and Darkest Dungeon
Steam - Maffia GFWL - Maffia01 YouTube - HGMaffia Twitter - @HGMaffia
Age of Empires 3 Heaven Seraph

What is this life if, full of care, We have no time to stand and stare.
[This message hasn't been edited by fred_ernie (or Maffia) (not edited 12-29-2005 @ 09:57 AM).]
General_II
Skirmisher
posted 01-24-11 12:44 PM EDT (US)     91 / 171       
The Good, The Bad, and The Weird. Basically a sino-western set in the Mongolian desert in the 40s. Watching it now and I'd heartily recommend it.
Centy13
Skirmisher
(id: Shan)
posted 01-24-11 03:59 PM EDT (US)     92 / 171       
dr strangelove. pretty cool, older movie which is rare for me
This is an amazing movie and utterly deserving of all the praise it gets.
2001 space odyssey. really wanted to appreciate it because of its status but let's face it it was pretty lame. the book was lame too.
Sure, it brought us HAL, and HAL related quotes, but otherwise it's a pretty lame film. It seemed weird to me that so many people claim to like it so much. Also agreed on the book.
robin hood. didn't enjoy it at all.
I suppose if you're into alt. history style action films it's all right, I feel the ending made what could otherwise have been a decent/all right film suck.

Recently one of my friends showed me a movie called "Repo! The genetic opera" that he is rather into, it seems to be a gruesome and macabre, gothic-themed, rocky-horror-esque musical. It left me bewildered. I enjoy, but I didn't hate it either. Supposedly you need to watch it a few times to get it or something.
Personally I just think that's a sign of poor story telling.

I watched the classic silent movie, Metropolis on youtube the other night. I loved the art-deco architecture etc but I rapidly grew tired of the very obvious class war elements and the flat characters. I can see how it could probably be an interesting, relevant and good film in its day, and don't regret watching it, but it felt very primitive.

I finally saw inception recently. Very interesting concept and movie. Well made, and good ending. Also very nice sound track.

Due to being bored and trapped in my place due to the flooding (and to a lesser extent, being broke), I took to reading old textbooks lying around the place. being that my parents were both in medicine, that means medical textbooks. To my surprise, I've found them very interesting.

★ ★ ★ ★ ★
Von Mackensens Hat
Skirmisher
(id: DrNick)
posted 01-25-11 05:13 PM EDT (US)     93 / 171       
2001 space odyssey. really wanted to appreciate it because of its status but let's face it it was pretty lame. the book was lame too.
Sure, it brought us HAL, and HAL related quotes, but otherwise it's a pretty lame film. It seemed weird to me that so many people claim to like it so much. Also agreed on the book.
I really like 2001: A Space Odyssey but I can see why someone wouldn't. It's got an odd narrative structure and it's really out there. Like most of Kubrick's films, it's less about cohesive story-telling and more about evoking a a reaction.

In the end, I felt it was an interesting meditation about our reliance on technology and how it effects the way we evolve.

In that respect, the structure makes a lot of sense. The first act is man evolving through technology (ie "the bone"). The second act is man's ultimate trouble with that (ie "HAL") and the third section is him overcoming that (ie "space baby").

The obelisk is a symbolic thread through the whole thing.

Is it ground breaking storytelling? No. But that doesn't mean I can't like it. It does invoke a sort of lonely desperation which is kind of chilling and raises feelings about "space" that are sorely lacking in almost all other science fiction movies.

For instance, because so much of the movie is shot in silence or, at least, without verbal communication. It becomes a somewhat isolating experience to watch.

EDIT: And because I'm on a roll, Dr. Strangelove is the same way. The ultimate goal is to create an impression on the viewer, not to tell a cohesive story. I think we accept it more in that film because we are used to comedies taking liberties with dramatic structure but I would say the entire point of the movie was to leave the viewer with the feeling that they were, in fact, going to die and when they did it was going to be a very silly thing indeed (we miss some of this subtext as post-cold war viewers).

A Clockwork Orange was the same too. The first time I saw that movie it made me sick to my stomach (literally). It changed me.

Dr Nick
I never forget a face, but in your case I'll be glad to make an exception.

[This message has been edited by drnick (edited 01-25-2011 @ 05:24 PM).]

Meteora
Skirmisher
posted 01-25-11 07:40 PM EDT (US)     94 / 171       
i just watched being john malkovich last night, and while i don't think it was bad i really did not enjoy myself. everything about the movie is just ugly in a way i can't put my finger on. that probably doesn't make any sense to anyone else but whatever. maybe that was the point though but still i didn't enjoy watching it.

also last week i saw young frankenstein with my cousin. it was pretty amusing, and also i realized my dad used to quote it like every week which i never realized (when i was a kid he used to do the 'walk this way' thing all the time and i never knew he was doing anything but being weird).

in books i read neverwhere by gaiman and it was pretty bad, but still readable for what it's worth.

i tried to start cormac mccarthy's blood meridian and i could not get anywhere with it. his lack of quote marks is a little irritating but what's worse is that overall his world just feels like cardboard, if that makes sense. i like sparse language but that book was like reading a history textbook or something, only harder to understand what was actually going on. i'll try it again in a month or so but if i still can't get into i'm just going to shelve it. i actually bought it a year ago or so and couldn't read it then either. i didn't have this problem with The Road, so i don't know what's up.
Is it ground breaking storytelling? No. But that doesn't mean I can't like it. It does invoke a sort of lonely desperation which is kind of chilling and raises feelings about "space" that are sorely lacking in almost all other science fiction movies.
no one is telling you you can't like it!

honestly i liked parts of it but overall it didn't move me or anything. i could have stopped watching it at any point and not even wondered about what i missed. i don't mind non-traditional narratives and the like but there has to be some sort of central question that keeps you watching (or reading for that matter) and if a film doesn't have it then ultimately it won't be satisfying. otherwise it just feels like someone rambling on about how their day went or something equally pointless. there were some great scenes in 2001 but overall it was like,
"so what?" thematically i didn't think it had anything going for it, though i see where you're coming from with the technology thing.

but i guess i'm a stickler for story and don't care much for everything else, which i think we decided is why i don't appreciate hemingway either.

also this didn't affect how i felt about the movie at all, but the first act was painful to watch as a former anthropology student.
EDIT: And because I'm on a roll, Dr. Strangelove is the same way. The ultimate goal is to create an impression on the viewer, not to tell a cohesive story. I think we accept it more in that film because we are used to comedies taking liberties with dramatic structure but I would say the entire point of the movie was to leave the viewer with the feeling that they were, in fact, going to die and when they did it was going to be a very silly thing indeed (we miss some of this subtext as post-cold war viewers).
i thought dr strangelove was fine from a story-telling standpoint. it steadily moved toward a conclusion (in this case an inevitable one) that was presented sometime near the start. that's all i really ask of a film or book or anything really (except tv shows which are completely different). 2001 didn't do that at all. it just sort of rambled along until it got to a point where there was no way to have any more movie.
I finally saw inception recently. Very interesting concept and movie. Well made, and good ending. Also very nice sound track.
i have that on my puter and plan on watching it soon. i'm a little put off by all the hype though, but obviously i'll try to keep an open mind anyway.

★ ★ ★ ★ ★
Von Mackensens Hat
Skirmisher
(id: DrNick)
posted 01-26-11 00:33 AM EDT (US)     95 / 171       
It's a good movie and I would recommend it. Though the hype is overblown. I found the ending to be very annoying in that I guessed it way early (wont give it away).

I'LL TRY TO BE VAGUE BUT STOP READING HERE IF YOU HAVENT SEEN IT YET JUST IN CASE!

I was hoping the end would be left ambiguous and it would have been if the final shot had ended about 1 full second earlier than it did.

Dr Nick
I never forget a face, but in your case I'll be glad to make an exception.
Arkhane
Skirmisher
posted 01-26-11 10:08 AM EDT (US)     96 / 171       
I don't mean to sound like a dick but if you're stoned for Inception it'll make it totally awesome (and totally confusing)
Centy13
Skirmisher
(id: Shan)
posted 01-28-11 12:31 PM EDT (US)     97 / 171       
I'll agree with rick, that probably would have made it more interesting, but either way I felt it was a pretty solid end.

★ ★ ★ ★ ★
Shrink
on the trender train
posted 02-24-11 12:43 PM EDT (US)     98 / 171       
I should be working
So here are some mini thoughts of stuff i've seen recently

3-10 to yuma: ok in parts but the middle section was kinda boring

never let me go: a bit melancholic and not as interesting as i hoped. end is definitely sad though

the fighter: very good

dorian gray: kinda weird. the sudden strong relationship between dorian gray and colin firth where they became best friends instantly didn't ring true

kings speech: ok but not great. not sure its worth the awards hype but i can't think what else would be

tangled: very good especially the horse which made me laugh, but i think played too much toward shrek-esque comedy

127 hours: wasn't expecting to but i liked this a lot. very entertaining with zippy pacing

black swan: watched it twice, found it really boring the 2nd time but the swan lake performance was great

monsters: interesting movie. my friends hated it cos it didn't have many monsters

speed racer: didn't know what to expect, ended up being a weird kids cartoon thing but in live action mostly. weird film with an annoying kid+chimp duo, but fun in parts

Maffia
AoE3H Seraph
(id: fred_ernie)
posted 02-24-11 01:53 PM EDT (US)     99 / 171       
Which 3-10 did you see the original or the remake, I've only seen the original.

This month I have mostly been playing Dishonored Death of the Outsider and Darkest Dungeon
Steam - Maffia GFWL - Maffia01 YouTube - HGMaffia Twitter - @HGMaffia
Age of Empires 3 Heaven Seraph

What is this life if, full of care, We have no time to stand and stare.
[This message hasn't been edited by fred_ernie (or Maffia) (not edited 12-29-2005 @ 09:57 AM).]
Meteora
Skirmisher
posted 02-24-11 04:13 PM EDT (US)     100 / 171       
i haven't seen any of those movies.

and also the only movie i've seen since i last posted in this thread was the social network, which was pretty okay. for some reason i can't bring myself to love it although i think it was quite good.

oh i also saw some movie about woodstock which was shit and i don't want to talk about it.


in terms of books i read norwegian wood by murakami or whatever and it was okay. pretty graphically erotic which didn't bother me but was a surprise because i thought i was reading something more literaturey. midori was hilarious though and the best character in any of his works that i've read so far (which isn't much but whatevs)

★ ★ ★ ★ ★
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