watching n reading
Ender’s Game

What a snooze.
The stakes were non-existent, the performances were rote and, ultimately, the climax was a scene about children playing a video game.
Asa Butterfield doesn’t really sell ‘genius, ruthless military tactician’.

Oculus

Really strong atmosphere and tone but almost a total lack of scares.
I found the parallel narratives didn’t really add to the film. They felt a little in the way.

Noah

I admire Aronofsky’s conviction and obvious sincerity. But his movies are soooo self-serious and histrionic. And this one is no exception.

The 40 Year Old Virgin

Judd Apatow should take a break from trying to usurp James L. Brooks’s throne and make another straight-ahead comedy. I hadn’t seen this since maybe 2006 and it’s still a good time. It’s a shame Romany Malco didn’t take off like other cast members.

Everyone Else

Admirably realistic, really strong performances. A little boring but not bad.

King Kelly

An admirable aesthetic experiment. Pretty committed performances. Got to be a little much near the end.

The Raid 2: Berandal

The plot is absurd and waaay too fatty but those action sequences are so bonkers-insane that they’re borderline psychedelic.

Captain America: The Winter Soldier

I really dug it. A friend and I were talking about how Thor and Captain America’s first films were perfectly fine but mainly necessary hassles to get to their much stronger sequels. They set up the worlds and it’s a little boring but not everybody (in fact, MOST people) know the origins of these characters so they’re totally necessary. And perfectly fine movies, I’ll add.
But this entry is clearly superior to the first. Even though I love the idea of the period Cap movie.

SPOILER ALERT, MAYBE
Redford as a villain seems pretty telegraphed and obvious but maybe that’s the point.

PAT HEALY!!!!!!

Miami Connection

Watch this movie with as many people as possible. Don’t watch it alone, pointless.
Get a group of your dumb friends, have some drinks and let it loose. Good times.

Mother Night by Kurt Vonnegut

I had never read any Vonnegut in my life. It’s one of the weird blind spots that, for someone who meets me, seems almost unthinkable.
Anyway, you probably know this already but this book is great. The writing is so clean and clear and simple.
It’s very sad and extremely funny.
I don’t think that I’ll start burning through all of his works. I think I will read more but I will attempt to curate the ones I read a little carefully.
Oh man, if I read this book when I was 16? I would have been even MORE insufferable than I already was.