RaaD Movies, News and Technology

Dany's RaaD Roundup

This Week in News, The Daily Show and The Colbert Report for December 12th, 2010

President Clinton gives a 3omin press conference to support the tax deal that President Obama and Congressional Republicans recentyl made. I don’t like the deal, but I am more partisan than either the current or former President, so I think the deal should pass and the sooner that happens, the more likely other bills can also get greased through to the President’s desk finally. It also shows that Bill Clinton is STILL the best spokesman in politics today.
I can’t embed this video, so watch it here on CSPAN.

Oh how I love getting offended by nothing, especially around Christmas.
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Former Chairman of the Joint Chiefs, General Hugh Shelton, has some very interesting stories, but for me, none more interesting than how Veterans Affairs doctors cured his paralysis after a fall and head injury, thanks to Jeff Lang raising his blood pressure for several hours. His new book is Without Hesitation.
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When is printing money not printing money? I guess when Ben Bernanke says so!
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Seth Green promoting Robot Chicken Star Wars Episode III, which I think I need to see… NOW!
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Obama’s getting annoyed with his own base.
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Steve Martin gets grilled by Stephen Colbert as he promotes his new book.
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Daniel Ellsberg, the man who leaked the Pentagon Papers comments on Julian Assange and Wikileaks.
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Enjoy

Dany

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December 13, 2010 5:37 pm Posted by | books, cartoons, clips, DC, economy, health, Law, medicine, military, movies, politics, tv, Virginia, Washington, Washington DC | Leave a comment

Temple Grandin Movie Review

I rarely review movies that aren’t currently in theaters, but after I heard about the HBO film Temple Grandin from my psychiatry professor and watched the film, I had to change that. For anyone who wants to understand what autism means to someone who actually found her way through the disorder and with a lot of work made a big difference in the fields of science, animal husbandry and general medical understanding. Autism used to be considered a disorder that was the fault of the mother, this stigma easily could have ruined a family, but this movie tells the story of one person, with her struggles and her ability to persevere. This is an excellent film. Buy a copy, rent it, just watch it. Claire Danes gives a stellar performance, easily the best movie I have ever seen her in (even though I loved Stardust) with this true story, Julia Ormond gives a heart wrenching performance, David Strathairn and Catherine O’Hara wonderfully support this world of discovery.

The movie is based on the book written by Dr. Grandin: My Life in Pictures. Thanks to Vulture NYmag for the above image.

Enjoy

Dany

November 23, 2010 11:43 pm Posted by | books, brain, dvd, health, medicine, movie reviews, movies, nature, science, tv | Leave a comment

Super Mario Audiobook Miniature, The Daily Show and Colbert Report Roundup for the Week of November 13th, 2010

I came across this audio short story from the Podcastle series (subscribe here) called Mario’s Three Lives. Anyone who grew up playing the Mario franchise of games should enjoy this 8min short audio story, I know I did! How can you go wrong with any story rated Rated PG “for plumbers, philosophy, and good ol’ fashioned shrooms?” The story is by Matt Bell:
Mario’s Three Lives

Jon Stewart comments on all the people commenting on his Rally to Restore Sanity and/or Fear, then about Keith Olbermann’s suspension. Later in the week Jon Stewart sats down for Rachel Maddow to interview him for 50min. He talks about the reaction to his recent rally in Washington, DC. He then talks about how he tries to see the political news as a climate scientist compared to the 24hr cable news channels that seem to only report the weather. It’s a great interview.
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Debunking the huge costs that Glenn Beck and Fox News commented on, which probably costs more like ~$5million/day, what’s being wrong by overestimating costs by ~$195million/day when you can insult President Obama‘s decision making for a week? Thanks to Factcheck.org and Snopes for the sourcing of RATIONAL numbers, I’ll take their sourcing over an “anonymous Indian official” any day.
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Texas Governor Rick Perry does an extended interview to promote his new book Fed Up! I must say, he is quite riveting and learned person to listen to, but I am also glad that he is not my governor.
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All I can say is, who knew that Obama lost his dancing shoes somewhere between his inauguration and today?
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I didn’t know I wanted a McRib, but I doubt President Bush will and Harrison Ford agrees with me (that’s right, Han Solo/Indiana Jones agrees with ME) while he promotes his new movie Morning Glory. The next night Jon shows all the different places President Bush was interviewed recently.
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Rosario Dawson seems so lovely, her new movie is Unstoppable and congratulations on breaking ground on the new Girls Club in Manhattan!
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Who knew Mick Foley was such a prolific writer, his new book Countdown to Lockdown is his 9th!
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I don’t know how Rand Paul can say there are no rich, poor or middle class, that just blows my mind. It will be interesting to see how this libertarian and Tea Party member governs over the next couple of years.
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Abbe Lowell helps explain how likely it is that in 2011 there will be a lot of investigations in the House of Representatives.
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I must agree, it would be very convenient when I needed to get me a crab, to buy it from a vending machine… THANKS CHINA!
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I know I don’t usually do music, it’s not my thing, but this week, there seems to be quite a bit of it. If you like music, you’ve gotta hear Quincy Jones, he has a new book Q on Producing and a new album Q: Soul Bossa Nostra.
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Cee Lo Green has this dirty little song on his new album The Lady Killer, so if you don’t want to hear or read the explicit language. just stop here… OK, for everyone else, the song is called Fuck You (music video). He does an interview with Colbert, then performs said song below, again, beware the foul language. He sounds a bit like Gnarls Barkley… just way more cursing.
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Enjoy

Dany

November 13, 2010 2:42 pm Posted by | audiobooks, books, China, clips, comedians, crazy celebs, DC, economy, guns, Iraq, Middle East, movies, music, music videos, newspaper, podcasts, politics, tv, Washington, Washington DC | Leave a comment

Stranger Things Series – Sins of the Mother and Sacred Cow

I originally was going to write this about the first episode in the Stranger Things short film series (subscribe here), but after watching this later episode, I HAD to promote this episode first. As an up and coming medical student, Sins of the Mother is a frightening look at what could very easily become a medical reality if doctors ever lose control of their role with their patients. This episode was written and directed by Earl Newton. The graphics are impressive for this independent production.

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Here is the very cool first episode in the series called Sacred Cow, based on a story from podcast author Scott Sigler. There are currently 6 episodes in this series. It feels like an updated independent film version of TV shows like The Twilight Zone or The Outer Limits.

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Enjoy

Dany

November 12, 2010 11:02 pm Posted by | books, clips, health, medicine, movie reviews, movies, podcasts, Religion, tv | Leave a comment

Market Street – San Francisco Days Before the April 18th, 1906 Earthquake


If you have problems watching the above video, see it here.

60 Minutes came out with a story last week of a restored movie from 1906 simply called Market Street, an 11 minute film during the early days of film making. Amazingly, the film was shot in San Francisco just 11 days before the April 18th earthquake of 1906.

I wanted to present both the story that 60 Minutes aired (above) as well as the full uninterrupted movie (below). As well, I wanted to show just some panoramic pictures of SF in the aftermath of the quake. It is pretty amazing just how much a major US city changed in just a little over 100 years.

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If you have problems watching the above video, see it here.

Thanks to Wikimedia for hosting the full versions of panorama 1 and 2.

Enjoy this bit of history.

Dany

October 26, 2010 5:54 pm Posted by | clips, movies, photography, 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

The Daily Show and Colbert Report Weekly Roundup for October 3rd, 2010

Bill O’Reilly is a good sport and comes on to The Daily Show to promote his new book Pinheads and Patriots after all the Jon Stewart appearances on his own show.
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It is sad that boo-gate is more important than political ads that distort the views of political candidates like Taliban Dan.
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I have no problem with senators like Tom Coburn holding up bills, but I do have a problem the Senate having rules for secret holds to bills of any kind. I believe there are some topics so sensitive to national security that they be kept secret, but that’s about all that should be secret in politics, everything else should be open and exposed to harsh daylight for people to decide if they like what the people they voted into office are doing for or to the country
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Stephen Colbert tries to get Christine O’Donnell onto his local Delaware show, The Delawert Report.
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I guess when something is not a part of military policy, it never ever happens. Being gay or strait should have no bearing if you want to volunteer to be a part of the US miliatary, if you are brave enough to join and can pass the requirements everyone else has to pass, that should be all that is needed. It is cowardly that Congress is waiting until December, when the military survey on how best to integrate the policy change is finished, since it was undertaken in anticipation of the law being changed, not to ask the soldiers IF it should be changed.
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It is always interesting to hear the way a Supreme Court judge thinks, especially filtered through truthiness
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All I can say is flu season is coming, but Purell may not work so well against it.
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Here is an interesting look at the auto industry, from the man who was put in charge by President Obama, Steven Rattner, turning GM and Chrysler around after both companies almost failed with his new book Overhaul.
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No matter if it is A Few Good Men, The American President or The West Wing, I love Aaron Sorkin and he’s promoting the movie he wrote about Facebook, The Social Network.
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I love talking about good news, but this is not one of those stories. Greg Giraldo recently died and I’m gonna miss Greg, he was extremely funny, you can see him on his special Midlife Vices and these clips below.
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Enjoy

Dany

October 3, 2010 9:33 pm Posted by | books, clips, comedians, commercials, DC, Delaware, economy, gay, medicine, military, movies, politics, 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

The Daily Show Recap for August 28th, 2010

It has been a while since I’ve done a Daily Show roundup. Here are a few select stories from the past week:

Jon Stewart points out that the man FoxNews’ morning show Fox & Friends has been railing against (Alwaleed bin Talal) for funding the Imam that wants to build a mosque near the World Trade Center is also the same man who is the largest shareholder in Fox News’ parent News Corp outside of Rupert Murdoch’s family as well as being someone invited to meetings with former President G.W. Bush.
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Here is a clip of Prince Alwaleed bin Talal on Fox News showing the connection that Fox News has with the man they now rail against without naming him specifically
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After Rod Blagojevich was convicted on 1 count of lying to the FBI, he does an extended interview with Jon here
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Before I talk about this next clip about the Dr. Laura “scandal,” let me just say,  this annoying story is just another example of a public figure confusing the difference between the 1st amendmant’s right to free speech and what most people confuse that right to mean. The 1st amendment does not give the right to say whatever you want and then expect no one to get mad or offended when you exercise their right to free speech. The 1st ammendment guarantees that the government will not punish you for exercising the freedom to speak your mind. Just like you have the right to free speech, others have the right to be mad at the words you say.

Here is an interesting look at how Sarah Palin reacted to the whole Dr. Laura N-word story and a way to say a bunch of funny ethnic slurs on air, so if you don’t want to hear a plethura of slurs, don’t watch this next clip (don’t tell me I didn’t warn you)
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Isabella Rossellini FRIGHTENS us with a new bed bugs PSA she made with the Sundance channel (watch it in it’s entirety here)
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Glenn Beck seems to just be crazy, basically saying to fight the government and do what he says.
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Here is a fun and lighthearted interview with the mayor of NYC, Michael Bloomberg and he talks about the NYC mosque issue and just how diverse the neighborhood is around the World Trade Center site.
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Enjoy

Dany

Stewart points out that the man Fox

News has been railing against for funding the Imam that

wants to build a Mosque near the WTC is also the same man

who is the largest shareholder in Fox’s parent NewsCorp

outside of Murdock’s family.

August 28, 2010 2:36 pm Posted by | clips, crazy celebs, DC, Law, movies, New York, NYC, politics, Religion, tv | Leave a comment

Inception Review

There have been very few excellent movies I have seen in 2010, Inception is definitely one of them though. It’s hard to believe that director Christopher Nolan only made his splash in 2000 with Memento, the way he has been able to wrangle a cast chock-a-block full of big names is quite impressive for such a relatively new director.

I know it took me a long time to actually get a chance to see this film in the theater, but I guess the 5th attempt was the charm (the first 4 times I tried to hit the theater, something always came up or fell through to prevent me from getting to see the movie.

There is very little about the story that I am going to talk about  (the film is a must see for the visuals alone), just that it is a tight story, maybe with a bit too much explaining and exposition, which lead to the film being quite long (~2.5hrs), but at the same time, the cuts I would have made would probably have shaved less than 10 minutes from the film. All I’ll say about the story is that it’s basically a heist movie dealing in business espionage that takes place inside the world of dreams with lots of gunfire. What can you steal in a dream? I’ll let you watch the movie to find out.

The performances by the main players, Leonardo DiCaprio, Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Tom Hardy and Ellen Page were extremely strong. Nolan also brings back Cillian Murphy and Ken Watanabe from his prior film Batman Begins and there are bit parts for Tom Berenger, Marion Cotillard, Michael Caine and Pete Postlethwaite. The visuals were nothing less than stunning and I’m always a sucker for MC Escheresque impossible images realized.

I hope by the end, you can decide for yourself what it all means and what happens.

Thanks to IMDB for the above pic.

Enjoy

Dany

August 3, 2010 1:46 am Posted by | guns, movie reviews, movies | Leave a comment