The Encounter

OK, here it is – the video that we made last weekend for the 72 Hour Film Shootout – we only had 72 hours from start to finish to do everything, from writing the script, shooting the scenes, editing the film, and geting it onto miniDV tapes to submit it for judging (the funny thing is that getting the edits onto miniDV was actually the hardest part of the whole thing). Hope you like it.

Summer in the City

Sunday: saw “Ocean’s Thirteen.” Nothing spectacular – the plot’s kind of “huh?” – Danny Ocean (George Clooney) and Friends are back in Las Vegas to pull off a scheme to make up for Al Pacino’s character’s screwing their fellow cohort, Reuben (played rather amusingly by Elliot Gould). The movie’s still pretty slick to watch (I kind of liked “Ocean’s 12” and certainly enjoyed “Ocean’s 11” – haven’t seen the original “Ocean’s 11” with Frank Sinatra, but oh well). The guys are good-looking as ever – drool-worthy Mr. Clooney and Brad Pitt; Matt Damon and the rest funny to watch. At the very least, there’s something fun watching the guys having fun with each other. The womenfolk (well, Julia Roberts anyway) aren’t in the movie this time, with only Ellen Barkin taking up the Woman in the movie – she was ok, but it was more about watching the Guys, of course. I’d give the movie a B grade – a good watch.

An icky NYC summer day this Tuesday.

I suppose we could feel bad for Kobayashi, the Hot Dog Eating contestant whose jaw injury is preventing him from this year’s Nathan’s July 4th contest.

This is a story that’s getting around: “Giants penguins may have roamed Peru.” The headline alone is kind of amusing – prehistoric Giant Penguins on the Earth. The imagery – big beaks waddling around, or swimming really really fast. Like, what? Saber-tooth tigers ate them? Or maybe they ate saber-tooth tigers and woolly-mammoths?

MTA makes the (unsurprising) study that concludes that the A, 1,2,3,4,5 are fully crowded to capacity and no more subways and frequent rides can be put on the lines (insert sarcastic “yeah, we all love congested subway tunnels”), whereas the J, M, Z are barely used and are 99% on time. Um, what kind of genuises figured that out? Geez, now the next step is to figure out how to ease the crowded lines and make better use of the unused lines.

The Genius of P.G. Wodehouse,” a Newsweek web exclusive. Well, I’m certainly partial to the silliness of Bertie Wooster and the whole Jeeves to the rescue – at least actors Hugh Laurie and Stephen Fry made Bertie and Jeeves fun. Wodehouse’s writing – it’s clever, but I kind of would have liked more heart.

The Case of the DC ALJ Who Sued the Dry Cleaners is dismissed. Thank goodness. Now can we please restore some dignity to the profession, please?

This story on how doctors who refuse to give treatment because it conflicts with their religion — well, it’s kind of disturbing to me. I won’t go into the legal implications (I’m hardly an expert), but the article depressed me. There’s more than just a hint of double standard to this – so, you might have a doctor who would refuse to prescribe birth control to a rape victim (!) or conduct an abortion because of religious reasons; but no problem (or have no similar moral qualms) on prescribing Viagra to a man (whose only real use for Viagra is well – you know…)? The disproportionate effect on women and their health just doesn’t feel right to me.

Shootout at the Waterfront

This past weekend I finally was able to check off another of those “No Opportunity Wasted” items, and joined in with a group of P’s friends to compete in the Asian American 72 Hour Film Shootout. I’ve always thought about doing it, but never got it together. This year, the critical mass finally came together.

The required theme for this year’s competition was “Elizabeth Ong is missing…”. We ended up with a 3 minute cannonball run thriller that had us dashing through the streets of Long Island City and driving through the back roads around the FDR Drive. I was technical director, which involved being the go-to guy when we ran into a problem, and making sure nobody hurt themselves.  We all gained practical experience in movie making. The best part of it was that we all made new hard and fast friends — that was the best takeaway from this experience. There’s 63 other teams out there, so let’s see how far we can go at the AAIFF film festival.