Friday, January 14, 2011

Movie Review: The Fighter (2010)

Well going into this film there were so surprises for this life long boxing fan. I knew of the record of the main person of this film "Irish" Micky Ward. I also knew of his brothers story and I knew the results of Ward fights. Even with me knowing all of this is still want to see this film when it comes to Korea on the big screen on March 10, 2011. Yes the film is that good.

A few days before I saw this film I rewatched the Arturo Gatti vs. Micky Ward trilogy, to remind myself why Ward was such a great fighter. I also knew that these fights would not be included in the film.

When I first heard of this films coming out, I was wondering who will play Micky, and when Mark Wahlberg was announced, I really had a good feeling about it. You had to cast someone from the Boston area or the actor couldn't pull off all of the little things that a local would know about Mickey and Mark pulls it off very well. I also watched some of Micky's fights after I watched the movie and the film really shows what a fighter Ward really was.

The film starts with a HBO film crew following his brother around and they think that its for a HBO Boxing special and when its revealed to be about an ex-fighter crack addiction, you really start to see the film go to the next level.

Christian Bale was cast as Dick "Dicky" Eklund, Micky's brother and trainer and by his acting you really think that you are watching the brother decent into crack hell and how he slowly tries to redeem himself to his brother. When Mark and Christian are both on there game here in this film, you slowly see that this isn't a good film, its a great one.

What I also liked about the film was that they showed the relationship that he has with his mother and his sisters. At times it looked liked a mess but at times so do families. So I liked that they showed the story of his family.

The film ends with Ward winning the WBU title and does no show the trilogy and for this film that is the right decision. You would need another film alone just to show that trilogy story.

The film has been nominated for a few awards and would not surprise me during "Oscar" time this film wins a few of the major awards.

Grade: A+

Film Review: Megamind

Once again, I saw the trailer for this film, I did not laugh at any of the clips and just wondered, At one time wasn't Will Ferrell a really funny person? I do recall laughing at his films but when this film was over, I did not do any laughing and I wondering after 2 bad films back to back (This one and Shrek 4) Has Dreamworks animation started to run out of idea for great films?

I must admit the main idea of this film did sound interesting at first. What does a super villain do when he has finally destroyed his version of a hero? I liked the idea that the film was going to go and it really sounded great...until, the put that idea into this film and I really could not believe what I was watching.

To me this film was a very badly rejected idea from Pixar about the failed return of the Incredibles. The entire films seems like a badly copied version of it. I never liked the hero, the failed hero. I wanted to try and like this film but it really lacks any new ideas and it never took hold of me to make me like any of the films hero's or villains. The film has great ideas but the film has no center, the film has no heart and it soon fails upon itself.

As I was watching this film, it just kept getting worse and worse and instead of laughing at this comedy, I felt sorry for anyone who actually had to pay to this this piece of garbage. It fails on every level.

The film will be showing at the IMAX also, so if you really want to see this film then please do, If you have any doubt on this film please run away very fast and never waste your time or money on this film.

Grade: F

Film Review: True Grit (2010)

There are time when I watch film when I wonder if the people directing a film or A studio who backs a film have a clue what the hell they are doing? As I was watching this film, I kept thinking, why was this film remade and what was the reason for it?

Now this film will have a very simple thought whether or not you will like the film or not. If you are a fan of the original 1969 True Grit then I think that you'll really see that this is a far inferior product to the original. If you have no idea about the original then I really think that you will like this film and that this film could be on your best films of the years list.

Lately, Hollywood film studios have gotten into the idea that we must remake, make classic film more into our modern audience. If the results are what I have seen with this film, Can we please put that genie back in the bottle and never let it out again?

I kept looking at Jeff Bridges and kept wondering why was he trying to fill John Wayne's shoes and every time he tried to act like U.S. Marshal Reuben J. "Rooster" Cogburn he just failed to live up to a legend and to me this really hurt the film. Another miscast was Matt Damon as Texas Ranger LaBoeuf. I have no idea why they cast a man from Boston and try to make him sound like he was from Texas. I never believed it and once again this film sufferers for it.

The one saving actor of this film was Hailee Steinfeld who had the role of Mattie Ross. As in the original she has to act like she is a 30 year old man in the body of a 14 year old girl and she pulls it off. I really could not believe that this little girl; had pulled off the heart and soul of this film that was needed to even come close to making this film into something worth paying 8,000 Won for.

In the end if you haven't seen the original, then please see it when it arrives in Korea. if you are a fan or the original then please pass at this film at all cost.

Grade: D-

Billy Donovan's Secret Sorrow

The text arrived two days after Halloween, well before Billy Donovan got to the cemetery.

“Thinking of you,” it read.

For almost a decade, it’s never failed. Every year, on Nov. 2, Arkansas coach John Pelphrey –
along with Alabama’s Anthony Grant - have reached out to their former boss at Florida. A phone call, an e-mail, a card or text. Just something to remind Donovan how much they care. And how they can relate.

“No staff,” Grant says, “has ever experienced what we experienced. What happened with all of
us … I wouldn’t wish that on anybody.”

Long before they were all head coaches in the SEC -- long before they became competitors --
Donovan, Pelphrey and Grant helped Florida blossom into one of the country’s most-dominating programs during the early and mid-2000s. Still, the moments the three of them remember the most -- the three precise dates that spurred one of the strongest, most unique bonds in all of sports -- have nothing to do with winning NCAA titles and conference championships.

Instead, they involve the loss of life, and the strengthening of friendship.

“The human body is amazing,” Pelphrey says. “We can all sense when those days are coming closer.”

November 2 for Donovan.

February 6 for Grant.

August 22 for Pelphrey.

“I let John know I was thinking about him at the end of the summer,” Donovan says now. “He wrote back and said, ‘Tough, tough day. It never gets easier.’”

Donovan pauses.

“He’s right,” he says. “It doesn’t.”

November 2, 2000

When Billy Donovan arrived in the maternity ward at Shands Hospital in Gainesville, he noticed balloons. Lots of balloons.

In rooms throughout the facility, lives were changing forever as mothers delivered newborns.
Family members stood in the hallway and congregated in the waiting area, hugging and
celebrating. Some brought signs that read “It’s a boy!” or “It’s a girl!”

Donovan walked past all of them. His wife, Christine, would be delivering later that day, too.

But the circumstances would be much different.

The first sign of trouble arose the previous evening. For more than eight months, Christine had
carried the couple’s fourth child -- a baby girl -- without any complications. Multiple times

each week, Billy, then 35, would put his hand on his wife’s belly and marvel at the kicks and movement he felt from little Jacqueline Patricia.

Eight days before her Nov. 9 due date, though, Christine and Billy were laying in bed when
she told him she hadn’t felt the baby move in nearly 24 hours. Billy could sense his wife was concerned. When he awoke the following morning, he said Christine was “sheet white.”

“She was shaken,” Donovan says. “She was scared.”

Christine walked down the street to visit a neighbor who was a general practitioner. He said he detected a heartbeat but, because he didn’t have the proper stethoscope, he couldn’t determine if it was the baby’s or Christine’s.

Back at home, Billy was packing for a trip to Birmingham for SEC Media Day. Christine told
him that even though everything was probably fine, she wanted to be examined at the hospital and that she would call if there was any news.

For more than an hour, Billy sat at home by himself, waiting for the phone to ring. It never did.
He dialed his wife’s number. Christine said nothing when she answered Billy’s call, but he could hear her trembling.

“I lost the baby,” she finally whispered.

To this day, Donovan doesn’t know what was worse: The despair in Christine’s voice, or the pain -- both mental and physical -- he watched her endure when she was induced into labor that afternoon. Standing next to her hospital bed, Billy held Christine’s hand as she delivered their stillborn daughter.

“Hours earlier we were trick-or-treating with our kids,” Donovan says. “All of a sudden, our
lives had completely changed.”

Within seconds of the delivery, the cause of death was evident. The umbilical cord had looped around Jacqueline’s ankles so tightly that, upon being unwrapped, it left deep dents in her skin.

“The lifelines had all been cut off,” Billy says. “She had no air, no oxygen.”

As agonizing as the delivery had been, Billy asked a nurse to take some pictures of Jacqueline. He knew he wouldn’t look at them often, but he still wanted some sort of keepsake. He wanted, he says, “something visual.”

Once Christine was stabilized, Donovan left the hospital and headed home. He felt numb. Seven
months earlier, in just his fourth season, he had guided Florida to the NCAA title game for the first time in school history. Now he was wiping away tears as he drove home to tell his three children that they’d never meet their baby sister.

Donovan stopped at a red light.

“I’m sitting there,” Donovan says, “and I look over at this church, and there’s a sign on the marquee that says, ‘God is Good All of the Time.’ I kind of shook my head and thought, ‘What’s good about this?’

“But then I sat there a little longer, and I said to myself, ‘I’ve got an incredible wife, and right now I’m going home to three healthy kids.’ A lot of times, when bad things happen in your life, you fail to remember all the good things that are in your life, too.

“At that moment, a calm came over me, a peace that made me realize that, although this was a terrible loss, I was still very, very blessed.”

From that point forward, Donovan was determined not to let the situation get the best of him.
Earlier that afternoon, a counselor at the hospital told him that as many as 90 percent of couples who lose a child at birth end up divorced, a point that was reiterated by a former coach and mentor.

Donovan was playing for Rick Pitino at Providence when a state trooper stopped the Friars team bus on the way home from New York to inform Pitino that his infant son had died of respiratory issues.

“Rick called me when Jacqueline passed,” Donovan says. “He told me, ‘You cannot go back to work. You cannot go back to your team. Not yet. You need to stay home and make sure you’re with her. This can cause problems in your family. Don’t let it.’”

Donovan met with his players on Nov. 3 and told them he needed some time away and that he wasn’t sure when he’d return. He spent the next week at home with Christine, helping her around the house, talking with her, listening to her.

Rather than weaken, their relationship began to flourish. Eventually, Christine convinced her husband to return to work, where people weren’t quite sure how to act.

“Even when a wound heals, there is still a scar – and he will always have that scar,” says Dr. Nick Cassisi, Florida’s faculty rep at the time and one of Donovan’s closest friends. “What do you say to make it easy?”

Donovan told people about the inspirational message he saw on the sign at the church in the
hours after Jacqueline’s death. One of his staff members, Tim Maloney, took a picture of the marquee and gave it to his boss in a frame. Donovan looked at it often.

He thanked everyone at the university who offered support but, for the most part, he consumed himself in his work and bottled up his emotions. Administrators had difficulty understanding the extent to which Jacqueline’s death was affecting him, because Donovan rarely mentioned it.

“I sat in a hospital and listened to the doctor tell my wife and I that our child was dead,”
Donovan says. “He said we were still going to deliver our child at nine months, but it was going to be delivered dead. Who do you talk to for that? Who says, ‘Hey, I know what you’re going through’?”

For Donovan, there was one person who fit that description.

His office was right next door.

February 6, 1999

At 16-4 and fresh off a victory over fifth-ranked Kentucky, the Florida Gators couldn’t have been more excited to take the court against Ole Miss on a Saturday afternoon in Gainesville.

But as players filed into the O’Connell Center locker room before pre-game shoot-around, they noticed a familiar face was missing.

“Where’s Coach Grant?” the Gators asked Donovan. “Why isn’t Coach Grant here?”

Donovan told his team that his assistant was sick, but he knew that was far from the truth.

Eight-and-a-half months pregnant, Grant’s wife, Christina, had stopped by her husband’s office that morning and mentioned that there was a strange tightness in her belly. Much like Christine Donovan, Christina couldn’t feel any movement from their second child, Brandon Harrell.

The couple went to the hospital and, almost immediately, Christina was hooked up to all sorts of
monitors. These things happen all the time, the Grants thought. Such procedures, they figured, must certainly be routine.

That wasn’t the case.

“Our baby,” Grant says, “had no heartbeat.”

Doctors told Christina that a rupture in her placenta had caused Brandon’s death. Grant said no one ever explained why it happened or how, although they were reassured that Christina had done nothing wrong.

“When you’re young, you think it’s easy to have a baby,” says Grant, who was 29 at the time. “Your wife gets pregnant and you assume there aren’t going to be any issues. Then something happens like what happens to us, and your whole world changes.”

The rupture in her placenta caused Christina Grant to bleed internally. Within minutes of losing Brandon, Grant feared he would lose his wife during labor. Christina made it through the procedure, but remained in the hospital for nearly a week.

“God doesn’t make mistakes,” Grant says. “All things work for the good. All things happen for a reason. Maybe what I went through enabled me to help Billy.”

Indeed, nearly two years later, Grant was in his office when Donovan’s secretary notified staff members about Jacqueline’s death. Grant said he darted to his car, picked up his wife at the tennis court and drove straight to the hospital to offer support.

The two coaches had been together since 1994, when Donovan hired Grant -- who had just one year of college coaching experience -- to be his assistant at Marshall. Two years later, Donovan brought Grant with him to Florida, where he blossomed into one of the Gators’ lead recruiters.

And one of Donovan’s best friends.

Still, as tight as the two may have been before, the relationship was different now. It was stronger.

“Hopefully he felt I was there for him,” Grant says. “Sometimes just listening and being an ear … that can be comforting. Those were very painful times.”

There were more to come.

August 22, 2003

When he arrived at Billy Donovan’s house, shortly before 7 a.m., John Pelphrey was still wearing his hospital scrubs.

Donovan, Pelphrey recalls, was in the living room, and Christine had just returned from taking
the kids to school.

“My wife (Tracy) and I had watched the horror and pain that Billy and Anthony had experienced,” says Pelphrey, a Florida assistant from 1996-2002. “We couldn’t imagine going through something like that. But now we were right there with them.”

Pelphrey had just completed his first season as head coach at South Alabama, but he and Tracy wanted their third child -- a son named John Patrick -- to be delivered in Gainesville because they were comfortable with physicians who assisted in the complicated birth of their daughter,
Grace, nearly four years earlier.

During both pregnancies, Tracy dealt with a condition called isoimmunization, which is the development of antibodies against antigens from the same species.

“In other words,” Pelphrey says, “Tracy’s blood saw other blood as a foreign thing, so it went into protection mode.”

To make sure Grace was getting enough red blood cells while she was still in the womb,Pelphrey says doctors went through Tracy’s stomach to insert a needle into the vein of the umbilical cord.

“Then they literally pump in blood,” he says. “It’s like filling up a gas tank.”

Doctors had no choice but to use the same treatment with John Patrick, but this time the results weren’t as favorable. Pelphrey said severe bleeding occurred when doctors removed the needle from the umbilical cord, but the problem went undetected until a few hours later. By then, it was too late.

“The same procedure that saved Grace killed John Patrick,” Pelphrey says. “He bled out.”

A C-section was performed around 3 a.m. and, just like Grant, Pelphrey says he almost lost his wife on the operating table.

“She looked awful,” he says. “She looked dead. I literally thought I was going to lose both of them at the same time. Luckily, within a matter of minutes, they got her stabilized.”

Because it occurred in the middle of the night, Pelphrey didn’t call Donovan to tell him what had happened. But when he left the hospital around 6 a.m., he drove straight to his home. A day earlier he figured this would’ve been a celebratory moment. Instead, here he was, beginning the grieving process with one of his closest friends.

“I’ll never forget Christine coming in there and sitting on the bed with me and holding me,”Pelphrey says.

Shortly after John Patrick’s death, Pelphrey and Tracy pledged they would never ask ‘why.’
They vowed to stay strong in their faith and trust and believe that there was a reason for all of this, that God had a plan.

“I can tell you,” Pelphrey says, “that it wasn’t always easy.”

But it certainly helped to have friends like Donovan and Grant. Other than his own father, Pelphrey calls Donovan the most influential male in his life. His daughter’s full name is Anne Marie Grace Donovan Pelphrey. And his oldest son, Jackson, was born on the same day as Brian
Donovan, Billy’s youngest son.

“My wife and his wife were in the hospital at the same time,” Donovan says. “John and I drove up there right after my first SEC game (as Florida’s head coach) and they induced labor on both of them at the same time. We’ve been through a lot. We were together when life was brought into this world. And we’ve both experienced tragedy, too.”

Years later, the enormity of it all is still hard for Pelphrey to grasp.

“It’s amazing stuff, it really is,” he says. “I don’t know how something like this could happen to one staff, one family. People always say that lightning never strikes twice in the same place.
With us, it struck three times.”


Three months ago, as he stood in the buffet line at an event to raise funds for a new children’s
hospital, Billy Donovan was approached by a woman he never met.

“You don’t know me, but I lost a child, too,” she told Donovan. “What gets me through each day
is that I believe God thought my child was so precious and so important that he took her directly to Him. I bet God thought the same thing about your child.”

Donovan thanked the woman, walked back to his table and shared the story with his wife.

“She was really moved,” he says.

More and more, Donovan is involving himself with children’s charities and groups that help families who have endured the same types of hardships as he, Grant and Pelphrey experienced
years ago.

Donovan didn’t realize it initially, but working with various groups has been therapeutic for a coach who for years kept many of his thoughts and feelings about Jacqueline’s death inside. Pelphrey left Gainesville in 2002 and Grant departed in 2006. For a while, Donovan didn’t know anyone nearby who could relate.

Just like that stranger in the buffet line, Donovan now continuously comes into contact withpeople who understand his pain. In some ways, friends say, Donovan’s charity work has been healing.

“By giving, he receives,” said Cassisi, the former Florida faculty rep. “By helping them, he’s also helping himself.”

One organization with which Donovan has worked closely is the Little Bits of Honey Memorial Fund. Started by Jenny Jacobs -- a friend of Christine’s -- the group’s mission is to raise money to help families with the $5,000-$8,000 burial costs for children who die unexpectedly.

Jacobs and her husband, Eddie, lost their son, Lazarus, to Sudden Infant Death Syndrome when
he was six months old.

Donovan has been a regular at the organization’s annual banquet and golf tournament. In the past, he’s even brought along former players such as Joakim Noah, Al Horford, Udonis Haslem and Chris Richard.

“He doesn’t do the typical speech-and-leave thing,” Jacobs says. “Everyone gets a picture with him. Everyone gets to spend time with him.”

Jacobs says Donovan always moves those in attendance to tears during his time on the microphone.

“Maybe he feels like it’s his one time to talk about his baby,” Jacobs says. “It’s a chance to give a voice to the pain and the heartache that is still there. We all move on. We learn how to live again and get up and dress ourselves again and be good parents to the kids who are still living. But in the end, a part of us died with our kids. That heartache will be a train we ride to the day we die.”

Donovan is also heavily involved with the Sebastian Ferrero Foundation, whose mission is to build a full service, state-of-the-art children’s hospital in Gainesville. Horst and Luisa Ferrero lost their 3-year-old son, Sebastian, in October of 2007 as a result of a medication overdose followed by a series of preventable medical errors.

Donovan films commercials and attends fundraisers for the charity, which is well on its way to making the nine-figure project a reality.

“It’s an unfortunate club to belong to, the club for parents who have lost a child,” Horst Ferrero said. “Only those who have gone through that experience can really understand how shocking it can be. Maybe that’s one of the reasons he became so passionately involved.”

In Fayetteville, Pelphrey and his wife have started “Pel’s Pals,” which raises money to provide financial support for women who have at-risk pregnancies. Pel’s Pals is also partnering up with
an abused and battered children’s shelter in Northwest Arkansas.

Now in just his second year at Alabama, Grant hasn’t been in Tuscaloosa long enough to form
any sort of organization. But nearly 12 years later, he’s found a way to draw inspiration from Brandon’s 1999 death.

“I consider myself a man of strong faith,” Grant says. “But at the time you think, ‘How can this be good?’ Years later, though, I look back on it and realize that my relationship with my wife
grew stronger because of what we went through. My appreciation for my oldest son and the children that came later is stronger than it would’ve been otherwise. Then, with Billy and John’s situations … all of it made us so much closer.”

Every year, on Feb. 6, Grant and his family buy a cake to celebrate Brandon’s birthday. Then
they step outside of their house, release a set of balloons and watch them dance toward the heavens.

“He’s still very much a part of our lives,” Grant says.


A few times each year, Billy Donovan and his family drive to the cemetery at Forest Meadows Funeral Home to visit Jacqueline. Christine almost always brings a rag and a bottle of Armor All.

Instead of cleaning just one headstone, she scrubs three.

Under the shade of a large pine tree, in graves about 50 yards away from the noise and traffic on NW 23rd Avenue, rest the children of three Division I head basketball coaches, three SEC competitors, three best friends forever bound by the most tragic of circumstances.

When Jacqueline died in 2000, Donovan suggested that Grant move his son, Brandon, from a
different part of the cemetery to an available grave just a few feet away. Three years later, it seemed right for Pelphrey to bury John Patrick in the same location.

“I’m not sure what term to use,” Pelphrey says, “but it’s certainly humbling when you walk out there and see all those headstones so close together.”

Grant says: “It’s special to have them all together like that. It’s very special.”

Because work has taken them away from Gainesville, Pelphrey and Grant don’t make it to the cemetery as often as they would like. Pelphrey drove an hour out of his way for a visit while he
was in Florida on a recruiting trip about a year ago. Grant is hoping to stop by when the Gators host Alabama on March 1.

But Donovan is still in Gainesville to pray for them all. He and his family sometimes form a circle around the headstones and clasp hands. With heads bowed, they ask God to watch over
little Jacqueline, John Patrick and Brandon.

And their families, too.

-- Billy Donovan is a spokesman for the Sebastian Ferrero Foundation, whose mission is to raise funds for a full-service, state-of-the art children’s hospital in Gainesville, Fla. Theorganization was started by Horst and Luisa Ferrero. Their 3-year-old son, Sebastian, died in October of 2007 because of a series of preventable medical errors including a medication overdose.
To learn more about the foundation or to donate, visit

-- In 2007, Arkansas coach John Pelphrey and his wife, Tracy, started Pel’s Pals in memory of their infant son, John Patrick, who died prematurely four years earlier. The main goal of Pel’s Pals isto raise money to provide financial support for mothers in Arkansas who have at-risk pregnancies.The foundation is also partnering up with an abused and battered children’s shelter in Northwest
Arkansas. To learn more about Pel’s Pals or to donate, visit

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Band Of Brothers’ Hero Maj. Richard ‘Dick’ Winters Dies At 92

On the night of June 5-6, 1944, a group of young men—boys many of them—embarked on an extraordinary mission. Hunched in the dark cabins against the sides of their C-47s and contemplating what fate had in store for them in enemy country below them, they were the vanguard of the greatest invasion fleet the world had ever seen which was at that moment bearing down on the Normandy coast and Adolf Hitler’s ‘Fortress Europe.” Their mission was to parachute behind the German lines and sow as much chaos and confusion as they could while completing their assigned tasks aimed at securing the beachhead from which the Allies would, in Eisenhower’s words: “Enter the continent of Europe and, in conjunction with the other Allied Nations, undertake operations aimed at the heart of Germany and the destruction of her Armed Forces.”

The men who fought that great crusade are now old and gray and starting to die off at an accelerated rate. One such man to pass away this week following a lengthy illness was Retired Army Maj. Richard “Dick” Winters, whose exploits as leader of “Easy” Company, 2nd Battalion, 506th Parachute Infantry, 101st Airborne Division and later battalion commander were made famous in the TV movie, Band of Brothers (based on the Stephen Ambrose book of the same title). The Major had been a familiar face to both historians and fans of the series alike and became an iconic image of America’s role in liberating Western Europe from the Nazis.

Winters himself shied away from the notion that his experiences were somehow unique and would consistently deflect attention away from himself and towards his men. They in turn unanimously remembered Winters as a truly gifted officer in a citizen army in which many were handed the responsibility of command but not all rose to the daunting challenge of leading men in battle. One of Winters’ men, Joe Lesniewski of Erie, summed up the feelings of those who served under him: “Every one of us, we’d follow him to hell. That’s the type of guy he was.”

Maj. Winters served bravely in every one of the 101st’s campaigns in Europe starting on D-Day and careening through Operation Market-Garden (the “Bridge Too Far” operation), the storied defense of Bastogne during The Battle Of The Bulge, and into Germany itself, even taking over Hitler’s fabled Bavarian retreat, The Eagle’s Nest. Winters was awarded the Distinguished Service Cross, our nation’s second highest honor, for his exploits leading an ad hoc group of scattered parachutists in destroying German battery emplacements firing on the landings at Utah Beach. In 2007 the mayor of Eindhoven, Holland presented him with the Medal of the City for his unit’s part in liberating the town from the Germans in September 1944.

After the war Winters retreated to a more quiet life, maintaining a farm outside Hershey, PA where he became a successful businessman. He was often sought out for his leadership insights.

Although there was a movement to award him the Medal Of Honor, our country’s highest decoration, Winters himself never pushed for it. This would come as no surprise to those who served with him for it was always about the men. Nor would it seem out of character to Steven Spielberg, Tom Hanks or any of those involved in HBO’s $125 million Emmy Award winning series who got to know the man and provide him and his comrades in arms the venue of personal reflections through which to tell their story. The last scene of the last episode shows Winters himself, long retired with a face gouged by the passage of time, a soothing voice, thinning gray hair, and eyes that reflected upon past images that I cannot begin to fathom. When his grandchild asked him if he was a hero in the war, Winters replied, choking back tears: “No…but I served in the company of heroes.”

Dick Winters was 92. God speed. You were a better man than I sir.


Thoughts On Political Finger Pointing After Assassination Attempt On Gabrielle Giffords

It is pretty sad to see the finger pointing going on in regards to the shooting of Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords, but here is a post to put all the false information out there to rest.

First of all it was disgusting to see the media and even a politician say that the killer Jared Loughner was a US military Afghan veteran with absolutely no facts to support such a claim. There has already been a online campaign started to get the politician Linda Lopez to apologize for the claim. It is just outrageous that people would just rush out there and say this guy was a veteran which only feeds the unstable veteran stereotype with absolutely no facts to base it on. What is ironic about the whole blame the angry veteran claim is that it was a retired veteran, Colonel Bill Badger who claims he helped subdue the gunman:

“There was a couple standing next to me and I was speaking to them. When he started to shoot, I remember stepping back a little. I would say he was about 25 feet away from me,” Badger said. “I turned and saw him running down the line of people on the chairs. He ran between me and the store. Someone hit him with a chair and he flinched a little. That’s when I grabbed his left arm. Someone grabbed his right arm and we got him to the ground. The other guy put his knee into the back of his neck and I grabbed him around the throat. We held him until police got there. While we had him on the ground I saw blood running and it wasn’t until then I realized it was coming from the back of my head.”

I don’t expect the media to be trumpeting this as quickly as the angry veteran claim, but I guess we will see.

Secondly it is disappointing to see the Pima County Sheriff and everyone else that immediately after the tragedy began to point fingers at political enemies. Much like with the claim that this guy was a veteran, such claims of this guy being motivated by the Tea Party and Sarah Palin are obviously not based on any facts. You would think decent people would wait and let the facts sort themselves out instead of instantly trying to score political points from this tragedy. One of the common claims by the left is that Sarah Palin’s graphic of “targeting” voting districts across the country is inspiring violence in this country. Here is the graphic:

I don’t think such a graphic is in good taste, but it is quite interesting to see her critics jump on this when the left has been using such graphics as well:

If you are wondering each of the above three graphics come from websites of Democratic Party origins. Heck the largest liberal blog the Daily Kos had their target list back in 2008 where they had Giffords name in bold to be targeted for election defeat because she was a moderate Democrat. One Kos blogger actually wanted her dead.

Even President Obama has used gun reference when talking about political opponents. Heck the liberals even made a movie dramatizing the assassination of President Bush.

A lot of this stuff is in bad taste, but regardless none of this is something that inspires someone to commit violence; all it does is make people hardened in their opinions of political opponents and makes it harder for people in the different political persuasions to work together on tough issues. I am all for a discussion on the increasingly inflammatory rhetoric on both sides of the political isle, but this tragedy has nothing to do with it and not the time and place for it. What government officials should have been doing is encouraging people to keep the affected families in their thoughts and prayers and tell the media to wait until all the facts come out before drawing conclusions on why this tragedy happened. Instead we got political finger pointing that the media was more than happy to inflame themselves.

A sad day for America.

Monday, January 10, 2011

From Gust of Popular Feeling

The Incheon Airport Line opens

As the Joongang Ilbo reported, the Seoul Station - Gimpo Airport section of the Incheon Airport Railway opened yesterday:
The Incheon International Airport Railroad (AREX) linking Seoul Station to Incheon International Airport will whisk travelers to their flights in 43 minutes, roughly 15 minutes shorter than via airport limousine. The fare is 13,300 won ($11.59) and makes no stops. The express train runs every 30 minutes, and operating hours are from 5:30 a.m. to 10 p.m.

A local train with 10 stops runs the same Incheon route in 53 minutes and only costs 3,700 won. The stops include Hongik University, Digital Media City, Gimpo Airport, Gyeyang, Geomam, Unseo and Incheon International Airport Cargo Terminal. (Gongdeok Station will open at the end of next year.) The hours of the commuter line are 5:20 a.m. to 12:00 a.m.

Travelers departing for Gimpo Airport can use the local line from Seoul Station. The trip takes 19 minutes and costs 1,200 won.
As I posted back in November, according to a Hankyoreh article I read, the transfers at Hongdae Station and Gongdeok wouldn't open until later. Obviously, I was confused when I saw this sign at Gimpo Airport Station.

The Hongdae transfer was listed, and though I didn't get a chance to try it out yesterday, a friend of mine (who I sorely disappointed when I mentioned the Hongdae transfer wouldn't be open for some time) messaged me to tell me it was indeed open, and that the trip from Banghwa Station to Hongdae took 20 minutes. When I tell people I live near Gimpo Airport, I often hear about how 'far' away it is. It started getting closer with Line 9, and it's even closer now with this new line open. It'll be nice to finally take a ride on it, seeing as I've been photographing its construction for the last four years.

Wednesday, January 05, 2011

South Korea, Japan to sign military accords?

by Robert Koehler

(Just when you thought things were going to calm down here in Korea, we now have this interesting nugget. The reaction to this should be very interesting!!!)

When Korean Defense Minister Kim Kwan-jin meets with his Japanese counterpart Toshimi Kitazawa in Seoul on Jan 10—11, the two sides may sign their first-ever military agreements:

South Korea is considering signing its first military agreement with Japan by the end of this year at the earliest as part of efforts to boost bilateral military ties, a senior official at the Ministry of National Defense said Tuesday on condition of anonymity.

The official said that Defense Minister Kim Kwan-jin and his Japanese counterpart Toshimi Kitazawa will discuss the matter in a meeting, scheduled to be held in Seoul on Jan. 10 and 11.

However, he cautioned that the two countries may decide not to push ahead with the plan, if it triggers a public backlash or faces strong resistance from politicians in the process of fine-tuning the details.

The two agreements currently under consideration, reportedly, are a General Security of Military Information Agreement (GSOMIA) and an Acquisition and Cross-Servicing Agreement (ACSA). The GSOMIA would allow the two sides to share military intelligence, particular in regards to North Korea’s nuclear and WMD programs. The ACSA, meanwhile, calls for cooperation in supplies and transportation, for example during an emergency or when Korean and/or Japanese troops are deployed overseas on peacekeeping operations. Whether this will apply in the event of an emergency on the Korean Peninsula, though, is unknown: from the Japan Times:

The ACSA stipulates mutual obligations on sharing food, water, fuel and necessary components as well as cooperation on transportation, maintenance and medical work. Details of operations are defined by each country’s laws.

Japan is hoping to seal the ACSA with South Korea in regard to international peacekeeping operations, relief activities and joint drills, the sources said.

Tokyo, however, has yet to decide whether the ACSA will be effective during emergencies on the periphery, such as on the Korean Peninsula, the sources said.

Korea has signed ACSA agreements with eight nations: Thailand, New Zealand, Turkey, the Philippines, Australia, Israel, Canada and the United States, the last which prefers to call it the Military Logistics Supporting Agreement (MLSA).

Now, as the Korea Times suggested, the agreements could “trigger a public backlash or face strong resistance from politicians.” Looking at tomorrow morning’s editorials, I’d say the possibility of this happening is quite high. Predictably, the left-leaning press doesn’t like this at all. The Hankyoreh said it knew why the United States and Japan wanted a three-way alliance with South Korea (missile defense, containing China), but such an alliance — and the Hani considers the upcoming meeting as the first step of a three-way alliance — might not be good for Korea (and I’m translating here):

Above all, there’s a high possibility that a triangle alliance between Korea, the United States and Japan would give North Korea the pretext to strengthen its nuclear deterrent. There is concern that it could backfire against the goal of denuclearizing North Korea. Protests from not only North Korea, but also China and Russia are expected. In particular, China, which has judged joint Korea—US drills in the West Sea as aimed at them, will increase its wariness against this move.

The United States and Japan are active regarding a triangle alliance because of their own strategic considerations. It is not desirable to us, however, for the strengthening of Korea–US—Japan military cooperation to bring about the strengthening of the North Korea-China-Russia alliance, with the Korean Peninsula becoming the stage for this power confrontation. Rather than reduce the security threat, this could increase it. This is why a careful approach is demanded regarding Korea—Japan military cooperation.

No editorial in the similarly leftist Kyunghyang Shinmun, but its article on the story is entitled “Opening the Way for Japanese Military Intervention in an Emergency on the Korean Peninsula,” which probably tells you all you need to know.

Even the conservative press is choosing its words very carefully. The Chosun Ilbo — which for a number of reasons you might expect to be most gung-ho about Korea-Japan security cooperation — says Seoul needs to be very clear about the goals of Korea-Japan military cooperation and what the two sides can cooperate on and what they can’t. It also said Seoul needs to be frank with the United States regarding the strategic goals of Korea-Japan military cooperation and its realistic limits. The Chosun expressed some of the same concerns as the Hani (again, I’m translating), too:

The reason why controversy is developing over the agreements the government is pushing with Japan is because the partner is Japan. When one considers Imperial Japan’s occupation of Korea and Tokyo’s claims over Dokdo, there cannot help but be doubts as to whether cooperating with Japan in even the military sector is the right thing. When there are recent signs that Northeast Asia is developing into a structure of confrontation between South Korea, the United States and Japan on one side and China and North Korea on the other, if direct military cooperation between Korea and Japan were to materialise, this structure [of confrontation] could solidify. It is also natural to keep in mind the position of China, which is Korea’s largest trading partner and, with the United States, the nation with the largest impact on Korean peace and unification. Speaking frankly, it’s hard to see how making Korea stand at the very front of a Northeast Asian structure of confrontation coincides with Korea’s mid to long-term interests.

The Chosun does take North Korea to task, however, for giving outside countries the excuse to comment on and exert influence on the Korean Peninsula, and called the “Kim Il-sung/Kim Jong-il group” an “anti-juche (self-reliance) and anti-national group.” Heh.

Another one of Korea’s major conservative papers, the JoongAng Ilbo, was a bit more keen on the idea of Korea-Japan cooperation. Of course, they, too, said the matter needed to be approached with caution, and expressed concern about provoking a new Cold War structure on the Korean Peninsula. They also worried that the public believed Japan was using recent tensions on the Korean Peninsula to boost the role of the Japan Self-Defense Force, and that American enthusiasm for trilateral military cooperation was not just to deter North Korea, but to contain China. At the same time, it acknowledged there might be the need for some degree of military cooperation with Tokyo, and even went as far as to spell it out:

Japan, which already operates three recon satellites, has the recon capacity to distinguish even 60cm object on the Earth’s surface. If it completes its four-satellite system next year, Japan will be able to keep the entire Korean Peninsula, including North Korea, under 24-hour surveillance. For us, who have to prepare for the possibility of additional North Korean provocations, a third nuclear test or missiles launches, there is a helpful side to sharing intelligence with Japan. There’s also the problem that while Korea and the United States have a GSOMIA, as do Japan and the United States, Korea and Japan do not. If the ACSA is concluded, Korea will be able to receive from Japan needed supplies and services if Korean forces meet with an accident while training in open waters close to Japan, and the two countries’ militaries can share supplies when they are deployed overseas for peacekeeping operations. This is why we agree with the need for military cooperation with Japan at a low stage.

You’ll remember that we were discussing Korea-Japan military cooperation here on the blog just a couple of days ago.

What I can’t wait to see is the reaction from North Korea. If you’re a fan of North Korean rhetoric, mark the South Korea—Japan defense ministers’ meeting on your calendar, because if anything even resembling a South Korean-Japanese military accord is signed, it could inspire Pyongyang to rhetorical heights the likes of which the world has never seen.

Monday, January 03, 2011

President's signature wonderful Christmas present for Japanese wife of fallen Marine

By Travis J. Tritten

CAMP FOSTER, Okinawa — The bureaucratic struggle is over for the Japanese wife of a fallen Okinawa Marine who wants to raise the couple’s son in the United States.

President Barack Obama signed a special exception to U.S. law Wednesday allowing Hotaru Ferschke, 26, and her 22-month-old son, Mikey, to emigrate from Japan after husband and father Sgt. Michael Ferschke was killed in Iraq in 2008.

For the past two years, Ferschke has been attempting to fulfill her late husband’s request to raise their son in the U.S. with his parents in Tennessee.

But the Department of Homeland Security refused to recognize the couple’s proxy marriage, which was performed over the telephone from Okinawa and Iraq and never consummated because Michael Ferschke was killed shortly after while doing door-to-door searches near Baghdad.

A special act of Congress and the president’s signature Wednesday granted Hotaru Ferschke permanent residency in the U.S. and finally brought the long emotional battle to a close.

“What a beautiful Christmas present,” said Ferschke’s mother, Robin, according to the Knoxville News Sentinel in Tennessee. “The right thing has been done.”

Since Michael Ferschke’s death, his mother has been only able to have temporary visits with her grandson, Mikey, who is speaking English and Japanese words, according to Robin Ferschke.

Hotaru and Mikey lived with her husband’s family in Maryville, Tenn., a small town in the Great Smoky Mountains about 20 miles south of Knoxville in 2009, but were forced to return to her home on Okinawa when her visa expired.

Mikey is a U.S. citizen because his father was a citizen.

My Top Videos From 2010 (NSFW) In no particular order

(1) I Just Had Sex (feat. Akon)
The music video for "I Just Had Sex" consists of Akon, Andy Samberg, Jorma Taccone, and a cameo from Akiva Schaffer, throughout the video singing to the nation via television broadcasts (one going to Times Square) about how they just had sex with their unsatisfied girlfriends (Blake Lively and Jessica Alba). The music video includes various locations such as a park, a household, a bakery, a bathroom, a museum, a pub, and a boys changing room. The song briefly features John McEnroe to demonstrate that sex can "make a nice man out [of] the meanest". The music video ends with the trio launching fireworks from their crotches, a parody of Katy Perry's "Firework" music video.

(2) The Lebron Videos

On July 8, 2010, James announced on a live ESPN special, The Decision, that he will be playing for the Miami Heat for the 2010–11 season and teaming with Miami's other All-Star free agent signees Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh.[107] The Decision was broadcast from the Boys and Girls Club of Greenwich, Connecticut.

In this fall, this is very tough, in this fall I'm going to take my talents to South Beach and join the Miami Heat... I feel like it's going to give me the best opportunity to win and to win for multiple years, and not only just to win in the regular season or just to win five games in a row or three games in a row, I want to be able to win championships. And I feel like I can compete down there.[108][109]
—Lebron James

The Cavaliers were informed of James' decision minutes before the show began.[110] The television program drew high ratings as well as criticism for the prolonged wait until James' actual decision and the spectacle of the show itself.[111]

In Cleveland, fans considered James' departure a betrayal that ranks second to Art Modell's efforts to relocate the Cleveland Browns to Baltimore.[112] Cleveland Cavaliers majority owner Dan Gilbert almost immediately published an open letter to fans, denouncing James' decision as a "selfish", "heartless", "callous", and "cowardly betrayal", while guaranteeing that the Cavs would win an NBA title before the "self-declared former King."[113] Gilbert's sports-memorabilia company Fathead also lowered the price of wall graphics depicting James from $99.99 to $17.41, the birth year of Benedict Arnold.[114] William Rhoden of The New York Times defended James by stating that Gilbert's "venomous, face-saving personal attack", along with the ensuing "wrath of jersey-burning fans", only validated James’ decision to leave Cleveland.[115] Reverend Jesse Jackson, American civil rights activist, said Gilbert's feelings "personify a slave master mentality", and he was treating James as "a runaway slave".[116] J. A. Adande of ESPN said, however, that James chose to promote the drama of his decision in an hour-long television special instead of showing "common courtesy" to notify Cleveland and other teams of his plans.[117] On July 12, 2010, NBA Commissioner David Stern fined Gilbert $100,000 for the letter's contents, while also criticizing the way James handled free agency.[118] On July 14, James told J.R. Moehringer for a GQ article that there was "nothing at all" he would change about his handling of free agency.[119]

Former NBA players criticized his decision to not stay with Cleveland and continuing to try to win a championship as "the guy".[120] Michael Jordan stated that he would not have contacted his rivals from other teams like Magic Johnson and Larry Bird to play on one team together, as "I wanted to defeat those guys." Jordan added that "...things are different [now]. I can't say that's a bad thing. It's an opportunity these kids have today."[121] Johnson echoed Jordan's sentiments on teaming with rivals.[122]

On September 29, 2010, asked by Soledad O'Brien of CNN if race was a factor in the fallout from The Decision, James said, "I think so, at times. There's always -- you know, a race factor.[123] James had previously stayed clear of racial issues.[124][125] When the earlier controversy over his cover on Vogue became a national debate, James had no comment.[125] Mike Freeman of, said James suddenly bringing up race in this instance was "laughable."[125] Jason Whitlock of said James' usage of the race card was "an excuse to avoid dealing with his own bad (The) Decision."[126] Adande, however, said James "didn't claim to be a victim of racial persecution" and "caused us to examine the bias that's always lurking".[124]

The MJ video did not some from Jordan but I thought it was great and just needed to be shown.

3. "The World's Reaction to Landon Donovan's Game Winning Goal">The World's Reaction to Landon Donovan's Game Winning Goal.

Donovan was included in the squad for the 2010 World Cup, and played all four games in the United States' campaign. He scored against Slovenia with a shot straight up into goal past the goalkeeper's face, in a 2–2 tie, and the only goal in a 1–0 defeat of Algeria off of a rebounded attempt on goal by teammate Clint Dempsey, leading the USA to win their World Cup group for the first time since 1930.

IRENE, South Africa – College student Robby Donoho watched Landon Donovan’s golden goal on Wednesday and decided it merited an instant tribute. Little did he know, within hours it would wind up bringing the United States soccer hero, flicking through the Internet half a world away, to tears.

Donoho, a 21-year-old Purdue University senior and avid fan of the men’s national team, collected a montage of clips of USA fans celebrating Donovan’s injury-time winner against Algeria and assembled them into a catchy package, which he put on YouTube.

Within hours, the video had gone viral, and as the American players headed to bed on Friday night ahead of their round-of-16 match against Ghana in Rustenburg, more than 350,000 viewers had tuned in.

It didn’t take long for the images to be passed through to the USA’s training camp near Pretoria and onto the laptop of Donovan himself. For all of the praise and plaudits the goal-scoring star received after his moment of glory, it was seeing the reaction sparked by his calm strike into the bottom corner of the Algerian net that touched him the most.

“Not sure if you guys saw this but it brings tears to my eyes every time,” Donovan wrote on his Facebook account, while linking to Donoho’s video. “Thank you all so much … we can do it.”

The scenes were intoxicating. From a frantic fan leaping from his couch in Arkansas to a raucous bar in Lincoln, Neb. From a Las Vegas casino to a New York sidewalk, where fans congregated to peer at a television through a shop window. From an American enclave in Lyon, France, to the streets of South Africa, the pictures of jubilation were enough to warm the hearts of those who have waited for soccer to matter in America.

For Donoho, it was a moment he will never forget, and it spawned unavoidable mental comparisons with a certain hockey game from 30 years ago.

“When I watched Landon’s goal go in, and the response from everyone across the world, it immediately reminded me of the Miracle on Ice,” Donoho wrote in an email to Yahoo! Sports, referring to the USA’s legendary hockey upset of the Soviet Union at the 1980 Winter Olympics in Lake Placid. “Those kind of moments captivate a nation and bring us together in a time where belief seems dim and victory doesn’t seem possible. It was down the stretch, with everything on the line.

“The best always comes out in sports, and it did for that moment and Landon. That’s what inspired the world to react with sheer excitement and joy.”

American soccer is not blessed with a long list of spectacular moments. When the end of this tournament allows a sense of perspective to return, if Donovan’s goal does not go down as the national team’s finest hour, it will surely remain its most dramatic.

Head coach Bob Bradley took the decision to shield his players from the glare of the spotlight by sequestering them in a quiet training base in the countryside. Yet the omnipresence of the Internet allowed a sense of the excitement they had conjured back home to seep through.

“There needs to be some kind of distance, but I also think it is important for the players to realize what their achievement means to people,” Bradley said. “That is [not a] bad thing.”

For Donovan, this has been an emotional time. After failing to live up to expectations at the World Cup four years ago in Germany, Wednesday night was the kind of moment he had targeted on the countless nights when the pain of under-performance kept him awake.

When you combine the pride the 28-year-old has in representing his nation with tumultuous recent events in his personal life, it is little surprise Donoho’s stirring video elicited more raw emotion.

And he wasn’t the only one.

“Hearing about Landon’s reaction to my video almost brings me to tears,” said Donoho, who is studying mass communication (broadcast journalism) at Purdue. “I have always gone into making my videos and putting them on YouTube to bring excitement and joy into every viewer that sees them. To hear that the player that inspired the world with his goal saw my video and it inspired him to tears, brings me to tears just typing this.”

I saw the goal and started screaming and I could not believe it when the USA won their Group!!!!

4.) Steve Perry Lip Syncing during the 2010 World Series

Steve Perry Video

My favorite sport is baseball and when I saw these videos of Steve Perry (The former lead singer for the Group Journey) I knew that I liked these immediately. It wasn't that hard, it was just a man cheering for his team to win and the crowd loved him for it.

5. Lady Gaga - Telephone ft. Beyoncé

Gaga explained that the music video is a continuation of the video for "Paparazzi", and is also shot as a short film. The video features Gaga in a prison, from where she gets bailed out by Beyoncé. Soon after, they go to a diner where they kill the guests having breakfast. Gaga and Knowles escape from the diner, and end up in a high speed police chase. Paying homage to Quentin Tarantino and his films Kill Bill (2003–04) and Pulp Fiction (1994) and Callie Khouri's Thelma & Louise, the video was positively received by critics. The song received a Grammy nomination in the Best Pop Collaboration with Vocals category.

6. Eminem - Love The Way You Lie ft. Rihanna

The video depicts a couple (portrayed by actors Dominic Monaghan and Megan Fox) in a love-hate relationship. The couple repeatedly fight, break things, steal, and make up again, with scenes flashing back to happier times in their relationship. Other scenes include the two celebrities on top of a liquor store, inside the store and "at a seedy dive bar next door" to it. Towards the end of the video, both Fox and Monaghan's characters are engulfed by flames.

Shots of Rihanna in front of a house that bursts into flames are featured while she sings the chorus, with Eminem rapping his verses in a field, as well as joining Rihanna in front of the burning house toward the end of the video. The video became an online phenomenon, gaining 6.6 million hits in its first 24 hours on VEVO, and 18 million views in five days. It broke a YouTube record for having the most views in 24 hours. By the end of 2010, the video had received over 250 million views.

7. Kid Rock- Times Like These

A very simple song about a man who loves a dying city. A great song by Kid Rock. I have no idea why I love his music but this one is one of his better ones.

8. Telephone Remake

This is a couple guys located in Afghanistan, that re-made the music video by Lady Gaga....Telephone. Prepare yourself for a fantastical journey. The sad thing is that I could really see myself doing this when I was in the Army!!

9. Metrodome Roof Collapse.

It was just weird to actually see snow cause the dome to collapse. Thank goodness no one was hurt.

10. CFL games ends on a 3 kick fumble recovery.

by Chris Chase

Before you watch the video of the craziest football finish of the year, let's get familiar with three rules specific to the Canadian Football League.

Rule 3, Section 2, Article 4: (paraphrased) If a field goal attempt misses, the kicking team can score one point if it recovers the ball in its own end zone or if the ball goes out of the back of the end zone.

Rule 1, Section 3: (paraphrased) A field goal attempt stays alive if it is touched by a member of the opposing team.

Rule 5, Section 1, Article 6: (paraphrased) An eligible player may kick the ball at any time to advance it to the other team.

According to a Canadian friend of mine, here's what happened: The Montreal Alouettes missed the field goal. Because they would get a point if they recovered the ball in the end zone (or if it went out of the back of the end zone), a Toronto player caught it and punted it away (lest he get tackled with it in the end zone, which also would have resulted in points). It happened to go right back to the Montreal kicker, who booted it again, hoping to get the "rogue" (a single point) by getting it out of the end zone. This time, a player on the Argonauts recovered it. But before he could advance it out of the end zone, he fumbled the ball and the Alouettes recovered it in the scrum in the end zone, thus scoring a touchdown.

Only In Canada..
Winter Film Reviews.

I have fallen behind on some of the movie reviews. This review will have films that are still currently playing in Korea.

The Tourist

Have you ever watched a film preview and just wondered if this film will actually be this bad? Sad to say this film was actually worse. I have no idea who said that putting the stars together, Angelina Jolie and Johnny Depp, would actually work as a film.

The film has some very huge plot holes that just left me wondering why the film went this way. I really thought that everyone involved in this film just showed up to get paid and the heck with any real acting.

The only thing I can recommend about this film was the city of Venice, Where the film was made on location. I had heard that the city was beautiful but with this film, it made me, one day, want to visit it.

This film is so bad that it isn't even worth the time to download it. Please pass at all cost.

Grade: F

Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part I

This film left me puzzled, I did not hate it but I really didn't like it. Later on I figured out why i didn't like it.

I don't know if anyone remember the old K-Tel Music Albums. They would always make albums that had only the popular hits of the album's theme. To me that is exactly what was wrong with the film.

You get to see all of the scenes that were the hits of this book but you are only shown about 1 minute of it in the film. For example when Harry's guardians left there home, the book was very detailed in this part but the film showed about 1 minute of it and it was over. I kept seeing the same mistakes thought this film. To me this part one was about 30-45 minutes too short. I could see a really great film in this but instead of a real full film we are shown it best parts, but without the filler that is required to make it into a great one.

I do hope that Part 2 will be a better film.

Grade: C

Tron: Legacy (3d IMAX)

Now I remember seeing the first film back in 1982 and I recalled that I liked it but never thought about a sequel for it. So when I saw the preview for this film a few months ago, I knew that I wanted to see it and when I saw that the film would be released in 3-D IMAX, I knew that I had to see this film in this format.

If you have never seen a film in 3D IMAX then please see this one in this format.

I was really surprised by this film, It had a good story an interesting plot and some great 3D graphics.

One real surprise in this film was the short cameo of Michael Sheen, Just watch the film when he is in it. He really nailed the role that he had in this film.

Basically this film is about a son trying to find his father and what happens when they find each other. The story was simple enough and after it was over the audience really seemed happy.

Please see this film while it playing here in Korea.

Grade: A

The Last Godfather

Well after the success/failure of D-War Director Hyung-rae Shim is back with his new film The Last Godfather It is basically a spoof of the Godfather series with a Korean Son intertwined into the story line.

The idea of this film is very simple, The time is 1951 and the Don feels that it is time to retire and give the business to his Korean Son,(Young-Gu) which no one knows anything about. The film then shows how a Korean comedian tries to enter the mafia.

The film is a comedy so there were times that I did find myself laughing at this film, but there we also times at this film I went WTF. Wait until you see the musical act that Young-Gu goes to see to try and get used to NYC. I really could not believe that it was actually them and it was a huge mistake of casting.

By the end of the film, I realized that it wasn't a great film but it was worth one viewing just so see a decent spoof of Mafia films. Please see it when you get a chance.

Grade: C-

Saturday, January 01, 2011

Happy 2011. God is Great the beer is good and people are crazy.