Friday, October 14, 2011

Saul / Paul

“The gospel of justifying faith means that while Christians are, in themselves still sinful and sinning, yet in Christ, in God’s sight, they are accepted and righteous. So we can say that we are more wicked than we ever dared believe, but more loved and accepted in Christ than we ever dared hope — at the very same time." - Tim Keller

 


I was always one of the righteous
Never lived outside of the lines
Kept a close watch on the whitewash
Disguising the dead bones inside
Disguising the dead bones inside

I was always one of the good ones
Keeping tabs on everyone else
Sure that I was one of the chosen
But I was a child of hell
But I was a child of hell

But You buried me in the bright light
Yeah You held my eyes to the sun
'Till I could see that
I was worse than I ever feared I could be but somehow
I was loved more than I ever dared to believe
Because of You

I was always one of the blameless
Or at least that's what I believed
Never thought I could have been blinded
'Till I could no longer see
'Till I could no longer see

But You buried me in the bright light
Yeah You held my eyes to the sun
'Till I could see that
I was worse than I ever feared I could be but somehow
I was loved more than I ever dared to believe
You showed me
I was worse than I ever feared I could be but somehow
I was loved more than I ever dared to believe
Because of You

Saturday, May 07, 2011

Comic Hipster

a group of teenage boys talking at the end of the screening of THOR (great movie BTW):

"It was supposed to be Green Arrow!" (referring to the post-credits scene)

I don't mean to be a know-it-all, but you leave me no choice. Green Arrow is a DC character. You just watched a Marvel movie. What you meant was Hawkeye, who will be a member of the Avengers in the upcoming film. L2GEEK, noobs.

/breathe

Sunday, February 27, 2011

Dan's Top 10 Films of 2010

2010 was not a great year for cinema. The funny thing is -- due to various factors like Netflix, SXSW, the Internets, and a wife that can keep up with my movie-watching -- I saw more films in 2010 than any other year of my life. But let's face the facts. Hollywood is in a creative rut right now. The studios only want to make remakes, sequels, superhero movies, and TV adaptations. Everything is PG-13. And you know what? They're not all to blame. Majority of it falls on the mainstream audience -- they tell the studios time and time again that they're only interested in crap. Just look at the top 10 box office list. There's only one original film (INCEPTION) in it.

This is just a long way of explaining why there are only four American films on my list, with the rest filled out by movies from Korea, Japan, Australia, Argentina, and France. What you won't find here is overrated Oscar-bait. *coughTHEKING'SSPEECHcough*




10.  BLACK SWAN


"I just want to be perfect."

The quest for artistic perfection is a trying process, to say the least. According to Darren Aronofsky, it could also make you go insane. Not the most original thought, but damn is it executed well or what? Natalie, I knew you had it in you. Still doesn't erase all the terrible memories of the prequels, though...



9. 127 HOURS


"This rock... this rock has been waiting for me my entire life."

How does a movie about a guy pinned under a rock for five days not bore me? Oh, it was directed by Danny Boyle? Nevermind then. James Franco rightfully deserved an Oscar nomination for what he pulled off here. (And should have won!)



8. THE SECRET IN THEIR EYES


"If you keep going over your past, you're going to end up with a thousand pasts and no future."

First of four (!) films from 2009 that made it on to this list. It's just more evidence to back up my statement about 2010 not being so great. This flick from Argentina (land of the OMGWTFBBQ) won the Academy Award for Best Foreign Film in 2009, and deservedly so. The scene in the soccer -- I'm sorry, futbol -- stadium alone makes this movie worth watching.



7.  THE LOVED ONES


"You've got 10 seconds to go or Daddy's gonna nail it to the chair."

One of my highlights of SXSW was catching this unexpected Australian gem with the midnight Austin crowd. A horror flick that actually entertains. How can this still be unreleased here?!



6.  CASTAWAY ON THE MOON


"It's poop!"

Do you know the single worst way to describe a film to someone? Use the word "magical". It's the WORST. So naturally that's the word I want to use for this movie. See it before the horrible American remake comes out.



5.  THE SOCIAL NETWORK


"Did I adequately answer your condescending question?"

Someone described this as "CITIZEN KANE for the Internet era" and I more or less agree. Most of us will never know just how much of the movie was true and how much was made up. But I'm pretty sure no one can talk the way Aaron Sorkin writes their dialogue. Except maybe Sorkin himself. Is it the best movie about an asshole, ever? Well, it's certainly better than FERRIS BUELLER'S DAY OFF.



4.  ENTER THE VOID


"When is this acid gonna be hitting me?"

This ain't fun times at the movies. But it never is with Gaspar Noé. This is pure cinema. Do you want to know what it feels like to be on acid? Do you want to get your eyeballs fucked, literally? Do you want to see the best opening credits of 2010, if not ever? Enter the void.



3.  CONFESSIONS


"This is my revenge."

No one makes movies quite like Asians, especially the Japanese. CONFESSIONS is a psychological thriller about a schoolteacher that wants revenge on the students responsible for her daughter's murder. (Why do you hate kids, Japan?) This film won the Japanese equivalent of the Oscar for Best Picture, Best Director, Best Screenplay, and Best Editing. And it was #1 in the box office for four straight weeks in Japan. It wasn't even nominated for Best Foreign Film here at the Oscars. Japan 1, USA 0.



2.  SCOTT PILGRIM VS. THE WORLD


"You're pretentious, this club sucks, I have beef. Let's do it."

It's a shame that this movie failed so hard at the box office. #5 on its opening weekend? I weep for humanity. But seriously, this is why we get crappy movies. Once in a blue moon an awesome film will come out, actually backed by a studio with a solid marketing push, and no one shows up. (Except the Chos). Edgar Wright, you deserve better. Hell, Universal deserves better.



1.  FISH STORY


"I am a champion of justice."

Can punk rock save the world? Of course it can. Part comedy, part thriller, part action, part music doc... and 100% amazing. Japan 2, USA 0.

Monday, January 24, 2011

Dan's Top 10 Albums of 2010

I didn't get to listen to that much new music in 2010, as I'm shifting my focus on to movies more and more. So this could be my last music list... but probably not. (Do you know how long it takes to write these? Longer than you think.) Maybe I can just keep shrinking the list as I listen to less music and become less hip(ster). (Look forward to my top 5 list next year.)

Things you won't find on this list:  Katy Perry, Justin Bieber, Wiz Khalifa, and dubstep. Sorry, kids.



My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy

10


Kanye West


My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy

I'm not a big fan of Kanye. He's an arrogant asshole and a douchebag, yet I can't deny the guy's talents. I may not agree with what he says, but he makes it all sound oh-so-good.









"reality is catchin' up with me
takin' my inner child, I'm fighting for it, custody
with these responsibilities that they entrusted me
as I look down at my diamond-encrusted piece"



Pickin' Up The Pieces
9

Fitz & the Tantrums

Pickin' Up the Pieces

I've always loved the classic Motown sound from the 60's and the 70's. Too bad no one makes music like that anymore. Oh, wait.









"one is for the money
two is for the greed
and three times that I told you
you're the one I just don't need"



Contra
8

Vampire Weekend

Contra

Sophomore slump. Those two words would terrify any artist or band fortunate enough to have a successful debut album. But these guys marched on and recorded a follow-up that expands on the sounds and influences that were hinted at in their self-titled debut. No slumping to be found here.









"when I was 17, I had wrists like steel and I felt complete
and now my body fades behind a brass charade and I'm obsolete"



All We Grow
7

S. Carey


All We Grow

Filled with beautiful and haunting arrangements, this album will make you want to take a walk in a forest and enjoy the natural beauty preserved within. Until you get mauled by a bear.









"if you doubt that I'll be there
don't despair
don't you dare"



Easy Wonderful
6

Guster


Easy Wonderful

If you ever wanted to discover the secret to making a great pop-rock record, you may want to ask the guys from Guster, who have been doing it for over 15 years. Well-crafted and (very) easy to listen to, there's absolutely nothing on here that will offend or challenge you. Unless you're offended by Jesus. And Mary.









"I wanna wake you from your dream
I wanna know just who you're talking to when you're singing in your sleep
I wanna find out what it means
do you love me?"



Big Echo
5

The Morning Benders


Big Echo

The band clearly had one thing on their mind while they were making this album: Phil Spector. I love Phil Spector, not as a person, but as a producer. So I approve of this. A lot.









"I put no one else above us
we'll still be best friends when all turns to dust"



The Suburbs
4

Arcade Fire


The Suburbs

It's no "Funeral", but then what is? That was probably the best album of the decade. I'll take a pretty good Arcade Fire album over a great Kanye album any day of the week. It's just that the theme of "the suburbs" isn't fresh or interesting to me at this point. Still, it's a solid record from one of the best bands in the world.









"I was only a child then
feeling barely alive when I heard a song from a speaker of a passing car
praying to a dying star, the memories fading
I can almost remember singing"



The Reluctant Graveyard
3

Jeremy Messersmith


The Reluctant Graveyard

Holy crap, Jeremy. Who are you and where have you been? This guy would have been my biggest discovery of 2010, if it weren't for the guys at #1.









"and I feel like I'm some kind of Frankenstein
waiting for a shock to bring me back to life
but I don't want to spend my time
waiting for lightning to strike"



Would It Kill You?
2

Hellogoodbye


Would It Kill You?

This album asks life's important questions: Would it kill you to let it go? Would it kill you to accept the good, the bad, and the ugly stuff in life? Would it kill you to get married and live an awesome life together? Would it kill you to listen to this and admit that you like it?









"you have spent your better years bored with me
sat about waiting for eventually
which I can't wait to see"



The Drums
1

The Drums


The Drums

Do you like the Beach Boys? (Who doesn't? Put your hand down, Chris Tucker.) How about Joy Division? Do the words "New York post-punk" make your heart skip a beat? If you answered "yes" to all those, then kindly go find a bridge to jump off of. No wait, I WAS KIDDING. This album is perfect for you, COME BACK! I'M ONE OF YOU!









"if you fall asleep down by the water
baby I'll carry you, all the way home"

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