RaaD Movies, News and Technology

Dany's RaaD Roundup

The Hangover 2 Review

I was glad that even with the pending legal battle over the facial tattoo made famous by Mike Tyson that was also featured plastered on the  face of Ed Helms (see above) in The Hangover 2, that the film actually was released on time for this holiday weekend.

The film itself though, is none too different from the original Hangover. So, you can take that two ways, if you loved the original, you will enjoy what is basically the same movie, just this time replace the backdrop of Las Vegas with Bangkok, Thailand. There is a lot that was not necessary in this film, like why was there a car chase in this comedy or why is this group (wolf pack) of guys actually friends with each other (Galifianakis not included)?

I know I will not remember much about this movie’s plot or many of the jokes, but just as with the first film, I will definitely remember the montage during the credits that actually chronicles the bachelor party night and how impressed I was with that trained monkey (on a side note, probably the most memorable on-screen monkey since Friends).

Regardless though, I know I had a lot of fun just watching the film unfold with all its one-off jokes. I enjoyed just letting the madness flow over me for 100 minutes.

Thanks to Hangover 2 trailer for the above pic.

Enjoy

Dany

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May 30, 2011 10:17 pm Posted by | animals, art, Bangkok, comedians, crazy celebs, Las Vegas, Law, movie reviews, movies, Nevada, travel, tv | Leave a comment

Admiral Snackbar – It’s A Snack by Scott Johnson

I just wanted to share this funny webcomic of Admiral Snackbar – Its A Snack from Scott Johnson’s MyExtraLife. If you want to buy signed print of this, click here. I love a good Star Wars, Admiral Ackbar reference.

Thanks to Current Geek Weekly #26 (subscribe here) for the comic.

Enjoy

Dany

October 24, 2010 10:03 am Posted by | art, cartoons, clips, movies, podcasts | Leave a comment

This Week in News with The Daily Show and The Colbert Report for October 16th, 2010

This week there was a walk off by Joy Behar and Whoopi Goldberg when Bill O’Reilly came on The View to promote Pinheads and Patriots, when he said Muslims attacked us on 9/11, but I searched for the video of the ENTIRE segment because when you watch the entire 14 minute segment, instead of just the standard 5 minute version of the video that is circulating the internet. The FULL version shows that the walk off was much ado about nothing, and I agree with Barbara Walters that it should not have happened because political discussions should commence in a way that people don’t just blow up and walk away, we should be able to talk out our differences civilly. Shortly after the ladies walked off stage, Bill O’Reilly amended what he originally said to rearticulate his point in a way that even the most knee-jerk liberal could agree with. All in all, it’s a non-story, if anything, showing just how uncivil our discussions on politics have become. I agree with O’Reilly‘s final, amended, stance on the 9/11 attack and who attacked America. Thanks Devon for telling my about this event.
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Elections are coming up in November, so it’s always fun to hear about all the unforced political errors, from the likes of Carl Paladino or Jerry Brown.
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Johnny Knoxville‘s new Jackass 3D is going to be screening at the Museum Of Modern Art, in NYC, just for THAT, I had to add this interview from The Daily ShowMOMA!!!!
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When the money could be coming from extremist Muslims, that’s apparently worse for Fox News than if money was coming from China… interesting.
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Eric Cantor, promoting his new book Young Guns did an extended interview, where Representative Cantor and John have a great debate over where government should be spending money. If the Republicans take over the House after the November election
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Condoleezza Rice promotes her book Extrordinary Ordinary People where she shares her view of just how important an education is to give the best chance at success in life. Now that is a message I can get behind. I just wish that it wasn’t so expensive to actually get that type of solid education.
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Here is a wonderful interview with the hilariously dark David Rakoff. Who knew talking about cancer could be so funny? He wrote the book Half Empty, which he was in the middle of writing when he found out he had a tumor.
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Stephen Colbert looks at how much of a threat Islam is for schools, soup and breakfast and it’s hilarious.
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Colbert reviews The Secret History of MI6 and all their… juicy secrets.
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Colbert interviews Austan Goolsbee, the new chairman of the Council of Economic Advisors
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The transitive property rarely makes it into comedy acts, but I guess anything is possible when Sarah Palin and Christine O’Donnell are involved.
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GOATS ARE TAKING AMERICAN JOBS! In this case, the scapegoats… are actual goats. There are very few times in history when goats were being scapegoated, unless you count when goats assassinated Archduke Ferdinand.
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Enjoy

Dany

October 16, 2010 8:52 pm Posted by | art, books, China, clips, DC, Delaware, economy, health, Islam, New York, NYC, politics, Religion, tv, Washington, Washington DC | Leave a comment

Apple’s New Toys for the 2010 Holliday Season

Steve Jobs made quite a few announcements about newer smaller  iPod shuffles, iPod nanos, iPod touches, a new iTunes and a new Apple TV along with many more updates on September 1st. You can watch the whole 90min conference here (subscribe to their keynote podcast here) including a performance at the end from the lead of Coldplay, Chris Martin. You can watch the musical performance here:

Of all the announcements, I thought the most interesting were the new social network Ping that is built into the new iTunes store, also accessible on the iPad, iPhone and iPod touch. They made a big deal about having over 160 million customers already with access to the store itself who now have access to this music social network. Considering that you’ll now be able to follow your favorite artists and friends, get local concert information, post videos, music and photos and get customized music suggestions based on who you follow, the facebooks, myspaces and twitters of the world should be wary, especially since Apple has a clear business model already tied into this network since it’s another way to open up people to new songs, albums and artists. It’s only a matter of time before this expands to include TV shows and movies. Facebook’s 500+ million worldwide active users still seems to top the charts, but I’m guessing Mark Zuckerberg‘s ears perked up when he heard this news.

The other interesting story from the conference I felt was the new Apple TV. Jobs admitted that since 2006, when the original Apple TV launched it wasn’t the biggest hit, but now they have added a lot of new features to integrate it with all the other products, with the ability to stream content (movies, TV shows and photos) from their computers, iPads, iPhones and iPod touches.  They added Netflix streaming support for Netflix subscribers along with TV show and movie rentals ranging from 99cents up to $4.99 for new movies being released on the same date as their dvd, there is also the ability to listen to and watch all the podcasts you subscribe to, which brings online content almost onto an equal playing field as movies and TV shows for access to your HD TV. The new Apple TV box is a lot smaller than before (the box almost fits in the palm of Steve Jobs’ hand),  probably because there’s no storage space on the device (everything works via streaming internet), the menu system seems easy to use. You’ll need a TV with an HDMI port since that’s the only output port, but it has built in WiFi and an Ethernet port for faster connections. I think with the new $99 price point for the Apple TV, they will basically put Roku‘s streaming box and anyone else like them right out of the market.

The photographer in me was very impressed with the demo of the new camera feature that was added to the iPod touch camera, high dynamic range (HDR) option. Using this, you can take a picture in bright light and the camera will take 3 quick pictures in succession, one at normal exposure, another underexposed one to bring out the colors from a bright sky and a third picture that is overexposed to bring out the dark sections of the picture and then blending the three pictures together to have a final photo with an enormous dynamic range of color and detail in the shot. Here is one example Apple has up on their site:

and here is an example that the great folks at AppleInsider created with their iPod touch with the original on the left and the HDR image on the right:

Thanks to Apple and AppleInsider for the above pictures. Also, if you want to see some professional HDR images from higher-end cameras check out this Flickr page and SmashingMagazine.

Enjoy

Dany

September 2, 2010 9:26 pm Posted by | apple, art, clips, HD, movies, music, music videos, photography, podcasts, software, technology, tv | 2 Comments

Photo Contests, The US Census and The Daily Show Roundup for the Week of April 2nd, 2010

This week I found a bit more than just some Daily Show highlights. First, I want to present some of my favorite Worth1000 photo retouching contest submissions. The above image is the winning entry from a contest of If Vampires Ruled. So, if you enjoy retouching photos or even creating your own images from scratch, you should be aware of Worth1000, where you can win money from all sorts of contests. Also, The Fire Wire has put together a nice bunch of images of artist renditions of how cartoon characters would look in the real world, very similar, but even more extensive than when I last reported on the topic. Here is my favorite from the page of everybody’s favorite sailor man, Popeye:

Here is an interesting take on the reporting around the violence since the passage of the US health care bill (here is the entire bill and here are the final changes to that bill)
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On a lighter, but maybe scarier note, Don “Moose” Lewis wants to popularize an all white male pro basketball league, although he does admit the reason for this is that white men are not as good at basketball than top black athletes, so is this racism a push?
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Politics always seems to be a hypocritical game, both parties are to blame, but for right now, the latest scandal hits the GOP‘s Chairman Michael Steele and how some of the donated funds to the Republican party may have gone to paying for expensive outings at a bondage themed strip club. I wonder how happy conservative Republican donors are going to be to see this:
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Senator John McCain looks to have a rocky Republican primary contest as he is being challenged by J.D. Hayworth, someone running as a more conservative voice to represent Arizona in the Senate, so McCain has started to elicit the campaign help of his former VP candidate Sarah Palin, the problem is similar to Nixon‘s problem against JFK in the first televised presidential debate, Palin just outshines him and he doesn’t end up looking good during this interview.
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Robin Williams gets interviewed by Jon Stewart to promote his new Weapons of Self Destruction (buy it here), but at the same time has some comments of his own regarding recent political scandals
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I love a good political protest by any group, but do we really need scary cops? Maybe we do if protesters are throwing eggs… not exactly peaceful protesting
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It is interesting that now that a health care bill has been signed into law, President Obama has been an extremely busy bee with everything from Russian nuclear diplomacy to NCAA March Madness tournament picks
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Roxana Saberi, is interviewed while promoting her book, Between Two Worlds: My Life and Captivity in Iran (buy it here), where she was arrested and charged as a spy
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Why is CNN hiring an incendiary right wing blogger as part of their on-air group of political blogger analysts? Also, are they vetting his most incendiary comments live, on-air, just to avoid a scandal of those old posts leaking later or are they unsure of their decision to even hire Erick Erickson.
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Here is an interesting story regarding the US Census of the population. Some are opposed to the questions being asked on current census forms, there are some good and some bad arguments for this, but most interesting of the whole story is comparing what questions were asked on the original US Census compared to the questions being asked today. After this final video, I will post the original 1790 Census compared to the current 2010 version.
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The original 1790 census collected 6 questions sorted by every county/city in the US asking for 1. the Name of the Head of the Family, the number of 2. Free White males of 16 years and upward, 3. Free White males under 16 years, 4. Free White females, 5. All other free persons and 6. Slaves. Thanks to Ancestry.com for the scanned census:

The 2010 census by comparison asks 10 questions on 6 pages. 1. How many people were living or staying in this house, apartment, or mobile home on April 1, 2010? 2. Were there any additional people staying here April 1, 2010 that you did not include in Question 1? 3. Is this house, apartment, or mobile home: owned with mortgage, owned without mortgage, rented, occupied without rent? 4. What is your telephone number? 5. Please provide information for each person living here. Start with a person here who owns or rents this house, apartment, or mobile home. If the owner or renter lives somewhere else, start with any adult living here. This will be Person 1. What is Person 1’s name? 6. What is Person 1’s sex? 7. What is Person 1’s age and Date of Birth? 8. Is Person 1 of Hispanic, Latino or Spanish origin? 9. What is Person 1’s race? 10. Does Person 1 sometimes live or stay somewhere else? Here is a copy of the 2010 form (pdf version).

Enjoy

Dany

April 5, 2010 4:52 pm Posted by | art, books, clips, crazy celebs, DC, dvd, health, Law, medicine, photography, politics, Washington, Washington DC | Leave a comment

Tech Roundup for the Week, Roger Ebert’s New Voice, US National Broadband Internet, Apple vs Google and even Nanomicrochips Inside Living Cells

There were a few interesting technology related stories I came across while sifting through Engadget recently, so I thought I would share what I found.

First, Roger Ebert, one of the most profound and prolific film reviewers in history has had many medical problems of late, thankfully he is still with us and reviewing films again, the problem is after all his health ordeals, he was left without a lower jaw and unable to speak… until now with some interesting help from CereProc. Here is the Engadget article, but just watch the video below, it’s hard to deny that this is an amazing step forward in science:

Recently, the FCC submitted its National Broadband Plan (download the pdf) to Congress, which includes a laundry list of goals for the next decade, essentially to provide access for “every American” to “robust broadband services,” meaning 100 million US homes with “affordable” access with 100MBps download and 50Mbps upload speeds, which sounds wonderful, but let’s see what their definition of affordable turns out to be. Here is the Engadget story with the reactions from Time Warner Cable, Verizon, Google and Comcast executives.

The above illustration is from Daniel Adel of the New York Times and it adds to the hyperbole around the idea that Google and Apple chief executives that were once close are now at war, iPhone/iPad vs Android. Here is the Endadget article that goes into the details.

Lastly, it looks like we’re on the road to implanting microprocessors… or in this case even smaller nanoprocessors into living cells. At this point, current research has been able to obtain 90% cell survival after such a dramatic procedure. It will be interesting to see where this ultimately takes us in the coming decades. Here is the Engadget story along with the original research article by Gómez-Martínez R.

Enjoy

Dany

March 18, 2010 9:43 pm Posted by | apple, art, cartoons, clips, crazy celebs, DC, economy, Law, movies, nature, newspaper, politics, science, software, technology, vaporware, Verizon, Washington, Washington DC | Leave a comment

Grenada at Late Sunset in April

I had to take a break to share this wonderful panorama I took of tonight’s sunset, I wish I had caught it a bit earlier while the sun was still visible in the sky, but I’ll try and get a better version soon.

Enjoy

Dany

April 6, 2009 10:50 pm Posted by | art, Grenada, photography | Leave a comment

Visually Stunning pic of Javier Bardem

OK, I don’t have much for today, but I did stumble across the above pic of Javier Bardem after seeing Vicky Cristina Barcelona, which I enjoyed a great deal. I really don’t know what to say about it, other than it is visually stunning and it reminds me why I love photography.

Thanks Vanity Fair for the above photo!

That’s all I got.

Dany

September 11, 2008 11:00 pm Posted by | art, crazy celebs, magazines, movies, photography, Uncategorized | 1 Comment

Vicky Cristina Barcelona Review

I just got back from watching Woody Allen‘s new movie, Vicky Cristina Barcelona. This film really has not gotten a lot of press coverage, I haven’t really seen any ads for it, but shows like Filmspotting (subscribe here), The Totally Rad Show (subscribe here), along with the always trusty Roger Ebert and James Berardinelli have also tried to bring this film into the light of day.

I try and make a point of seeing any new Woody Allen film I hear about and this is definitely one of those times where I feel completely rewarded for this policy. This movie is wonderfully wild, especially as the film progresses and yes Scarlett Johansson is insanely beautiful and sexy, but with this movie, I can see specifically what it is that Woody saw in her to have her star in 3 of his last 4 films, while I liked Match Point more than this movie, I thought she gave her best performance here as Cristina. Johansson has a restless, exuberant innocence that is wonderful.

I don’t always like the use of a narrator and I didn’t always like it in this movie either. It was useful for explaining which Spanish landmarks were being visited and which artists and sculptures were being admired throughout the film, but it got a bit annoying when, for example being told that the characters were tasting chocolates at a local chocolatier, while on screen, we can see Rebecca Hall, Scarlett Johansson and Javier Bardem walking in and eating those chocolates.

It has been a long time since I saw a film with Penélope Cruz and her sensuous and wild performance reminded me of the first time I ever saw her, back in Abre los ojos (the role that also inspired Tom Cruise to remake that film into Vanilla Sky with her starring in it as well) and it shames me to think that I still have not gotten to see her in Volver up to this point! I NEED to put that film on my list of things to see on dvd now.

I think this is a wonderful movie and I just loved it, especially with all the photography featured in the film, I love photography and I wish I could get my shots to come out looking as good as some of those taken in this film. Thanks to VickyCristinaBarcelona.Wordpress.com for the above pic.

On a side note, throughout the film, I kept identifying with the Doug character (Chris Messina), no matter how much I wanted this to not be so, while at the same time, I wish I acted more like Juan Antonio in my dealings with women and relationships.

Enjoy

Dany

September 4, 2008 12:28 am Posted by | art, dvd, movie reviews, movies, photography | 2 Comments

Jessica Rabbit and Stewie Griffin untooned by Pixeloo

After finding out what Homer Simpson and Mario Mario would look like if they weren’t cartoons by Pixeloo, I knew I’d have to see what was the next projects were.

I really enjoyed Pixeloo‘s rendition of Jessica Rabbit:

and Stewie Griffin:

Also, here is the ~10 minute video going through the Jessica Rabbit untooning process.

Enjoy

Dany

July 20, 2008 6:29 pm Posted by | art, cartoons, clips, movies, photography, technology, tv | 4 Comments