Thursday, March 31, 2011
Wednesday, March 23, 2011
From Van Walker(Disclaimer: the following article was written by a Fighting Illini fan whose tournament brackets are already in flames, which might explain the crankiness that follows.)
Having just watched the excellent ESPN Films documentary "The Fab Five," I remain convinced that college athletes should be compensated for their performance.
Right now, there are a number of you that don't just disagree with me, but are on the verge of calling me out of my name and making suggestions about my parentage, intelligence, or affiliation with certain cloven-hoofed individuals known to carry pitchforks and write shady contracts. Before heating the bile to the boiling point, hear me out.
It would be completely fair if the NCAA and her member institutions offered scholarships to persons based upon athletic ability, as long as the NCAA and her member institutions did not profit from the athletic performance of those individuals. The athletes would go out and win for good ol' State U., no money changes hands, and in return for providing athletic entertainment, they receive an education. It would be fair if no tickets were sold to games, no games televised, or no memorabilia created, nothing that could generate a profit, like intra-murals except with a traveling varsity team.
Give the popcorn and cola away and write it off, but don't sell it.
That, however, is not the current situation.
The current situation is this: the NCAA and her member institutions insist upon holding their athletes to a nearly impossible standard of amateurism that exists nowhere else in the known universe and enjoy a 100%-0% profit-sharing agreement with their athletes.
It is against NCAA rules for someone to buy a scholarship athlete as much as a pizza, as that somehow constitutes an illegal benefit. As someone who has eaten the pizza typical of most college towns, I think that this strains the definition of "benefit," but there it is. Buying an athlete a pizza that could be used as a Frisbee the next day is enough to get him into trouble.
The same institution, however, has no problem with using that athlete's name, image, number, and game production for as much profit as they can manage, everything from replica jerseys to video games to posters to anything that will separate the fans of good ol' State U. from their money.
I'm sorry, I'd continue my thought, but there's a growing chorus of people shouting something about "getting an education" being a more than fair trade. Let me address them before I continue.
For those of you going on about an education, Shut. Up.
Let me make clear to you the exact nature of this transaction.
The NCAA and her member institutions bank billions of dollars (for the mathematically-challenged, and for Democrats, a billion is a thousand millions) of profit from the services of these athletes.
The athletes themselves receive the chance at an education, which then offers them the chance at massive earnings.
The key words here are "chance."
Even if the athlete in question were to graduate, all he or she has at the end of the day is a piece of paper. An education is a guarantee of nothing. Just ask all those liberal arts majors currently pouring your triple-skinny mocha latte how their education is working out for them.
Even if the athlete in question were to graduate and get a prestigious job at a Fortune 100 corporation, he or she would have to be the CEO or the owner before he or she began to see the kind of profits that the NCAA rakes in year after year.
Basically, the deal is this: the NCAA gets billions of dollars, and the athlete gets a lottery ticket that won't win him what the other side is getting.
Why do you think the NFL players are so willing to do whatever it takes to get a fair deal out of the owners? Because this is the first time in their playing lives that they've had anything like an equal say in how the money gets split.
Oh, and by the way, how did those NFL players get their jobs in the NFL?
They were NCAA athletes first.
They played three or four years for no money for the chance to play an average of three and a half years for some money. There wasn't another option. Guys don't make the NFL from their couches. They have to be extensively scouted in game conditions before hundreds of thousands (or millions) of dollars are invested in them, and there's only one place that a kid can get that kind of exposure out of high school: the NCAA.
Some would call that a monopoly.
There are very few alternatives to becoming a professional athlete that don't involve the NCAA, but I support each and every one of them. For example, I fully applaud baseball's minor league system. Not only does it include levels, not only is it fully supported by the parent clubs, but it acknowledges the obvious: professional baseball is a job, and some guys weren't cut out to wear a shirt and tie right away. I applaud the fact that not everyone makes it to the major leagues, but that they are in fact paid. It's a fair process. There are no sanctions, no sanctimonious announcements on SportCenter about protecting the integrity of our game, nothing but a fair transaction: we pay you X dollars, you come play shortstop for us.
I applaud basketball players going to Europe to avoid a one-year sentence at a school they had no intention of attending. Again, it's professional. There aren't any silly rules about when a player can talk to his coach, the player is playing against grown men who won't respect him and thus challenge him on a man-level, and if he succeeds, he'll be much better prepared for the rigors of the NBA than some kid who dominated the Missouri Valley Conference and played games in southern Illinois or northern Iowa.
I even know how to pay the athletes.
Use the system that's already in place: the boosters.
They've got the money and the willingness to support these kids financially, so let them. No salary cap; whatever they could afford, let 'em pay that (besides, a cap would only encourage more cheating). Restaurants that want to give the athletes meals, good for them. Car dealers that don't care if a 19-year-old tools around town in a car that costs a decent year's salary, that's between them and their god. Boosters that want to put the kid up in a nice townhouse, get him some clothes, put some cash in his pocket, it's all fair from here.
But that tilts the field toward the big schools, some will say.
To which I respond, and how else has the field ever been tilted?
Not that I'll ever see it in my lifetime, but if the NCAA ever were to break down and cut the kids a check, does anyone here really, honestly believe that Alabama won't continue to have a top-10 recruiting class year after year? Does anyone here truly believe that Duke basketball will suddenly become an also-ran? Kansas State will never be what Kansas is, and that's just how things are.
The big schools are the big schools, always have been, always will be, so let's just eliminate this nonsense about amateurism and let the boosters do what they want for the kids. It might even convince some of the better athletes to stay in school longer, once the professional leagues move to finally close off contract bonus loopholes that allow rookies to out-earn seasoned professionals. That All-American might stay at Texas for financial reasons, since he could make millions at his university before being restricted as a rookie in the NFL or the NBA.
No, let the boosters put their money where their mouths are. Let them sort it out. The market will even out eventually, as even the wealthy boosters will realize that they simply don't have the cash to buy every blue chipper out there. Certain players would be guaranteed to earn more than others, but how is that any different from professional sports? Quarterbacks have earned and always will earn more than left guards, basketball players will draw more fans to the stadium than the diving team will, and women's sports will always lag woefully behind because, frankly, the interest is not there and won't be for a long time, if ever.
No, it's not fair in a playground sense of the word fair, but it is fair in a real-world sense of the word. The simple fact is that we don't watch Major League Soccer the way we watch Major League Baseball, and, as a result, the paychecks for professional soccer players and professional baseball players reflect the difference. The money-generating sports in the NCAA would stand to get the lion's share of the money, and that reflects the real world too.
Ultimately, this is about the real world, and bringing the NCAA and her member institutions into it. Even soldiers get paychecks as well as college scholarships, and one could rightly argue that soldiers risk a lot more than a blown ACL, so it only makes sense that the athletes that provide our entertainment get paid, and properly so, and immediately.
Because, at the end of the day, there was no justice in the fact that Chris Webber and Mitch Albom could walk down the street in Ann Arbor together and see Webber's jersey selling for $75 dollars, knowing that Webber himself, the man responsible for putting that jersey in the window, would not see one dime from its sale.
ESPN Films, "The Fab Five."
A few people around me have noticed that I have not been myself for awhile and this is the reason why.
From what i could tel from the Doctors and the x-rays, It looks like where the cut me open for the cancer surgery almost 2 years ago hasn't healed properly. From what I could tell it looks like the flight turblance really caused the hernia to become worse.
As for now, I have really been taking it a s very easily as I can. I have had to be very careful what I eat and really not drinking much more that water. Sometime I have alot of energy and sometimes I just get very tired.
So please keep me in your prayers for this surgery. I don't know how long it will take, I think maybe 6-8 hours. After the surgery please check facebook for updates..
Tuesday, March 22, 2011
On March 8, NoCut News and the Joongdo Ilbo teamed up to bring us this incoherent article:
'Fake' native speaking instructors descending upon DaejeonThe first time I read the article it didn't make much sense, and re-reading it didn't improve things. A native Korean-speaker described it as "an article written by foot (발로쓴기사)," due to how sloppy, incorrect, and ungrammatical it is. It goes well beyond being poorly written, however, and into the realm of utter cluelessness. This 'reporter' has no idea what he's talking about, and seems to have scanned a few articles without reading them in order to give the appearance of substance to an otherwise weightless article.
After screening strengthened in capital area...
Unlicensed hagwons spreading
As screening of private hagwon native speaking instructors has been strengthened in the capital area (such as in Seoul and Gyeonggi-do), they are streaming into provincial cities such as Daejeon.
There is concern about the side effects of a good many of these hagwons, classes and private lessons which are operated as unregistered or illegal hagwons.
On the 7th, hagwons and parents of schoolchildren reported that recently some areas of Daejeon have seen the spread of hagwons set up as foreign language centers which claim to have second or third generation overseas Koreans or married native speaking couples from the US or Canada.
They run small scale-operations teaching from kindergarten to middle school with various English related educational activities such as authentic American curricula, graded English class progress, conversation-based question and answer classes, and short orientations for those preparing to study overseas currently in progress.
In particular, in areas like Seoul and Gyeonggi-do where well known hagwons are concentrated, there is concern that students and parents are victimized by PR made up of unconfirmed claims made about teaching in order to attract students.
Their form of management is similar to hagwons, but there are numerous instances where they are unregistered hagwons which have not been reported to the relevant education office.
For this reason, and to protect against the inflow of unfit native speaking conversation teachers, create a wholesome atmosphere for studying and of course to guarantee safe places of learning for youth, from the first of last month the Ministry of Justice began strengthening the screening of native speaking instructors.
It's [already] accepted that when native speaking instructors apply for alien registration, they submit an ‘employment physical exam’ issued by a medical institution designated by the Minister of Justice.
Therefore, after the screening was strengthened in the capital region, unfit native speaking instructors who had trouble earning money in some circumstances stretched out their legs and managed [private lessons] themselves in lax provincial areas.
Though screening for native speaking teachers working in places like hagwons has been strengthened, the dissatisfaction of hagwons is about to explode over the selection of teachers by the Ministry of Education, Science and Technology or city and provincial education offices and the lax manner by which these public offices regulate the management of native speaking instructors.
While it's recognized that hagwon [instructors need] an employment physical exam issued by a medical institution designated by the Ministry of Justice, the selection of teachers under the supervision of the Ministry of Education, Science, and Technology or city and provincial education offices, and native speakers working as foreign language conversation instructors in schools are exempted from medical institution [health checks].
A hagwon official said, "Already the government lashes out at hagwons as the main culprits for the ever rising private education costs, and with so many that are even unregistered and operating without permission, the market is very confused. There's concern that parents and students will suffer due to so many unverified, unfit native speaking instructors."
Jungdo Ilbo Reporter Lee Yeong-rok / In partnership with NoCut News
It seems he mixed up the new nationwide drug testing regulations for E-2 visa holders (the enhanced drug test on physical exams from Ministry of Justice-designated medical facilities taking effect from February 1) and new regulations calling for Korean hagwon teachers in (apparently) only the Seoul area to submit criminal record checks (there was no information as to who made the decision or when it was being implemented). He then says that these new regulations have caused unfit native speaking instructors to head for Daejeon in droves - after only a month! The fact that he thinks that hagwon owners would criticize the "lax management" of foreign teachers hired by the Education Ministry and regional education offices speaks to his ignorance as well, considering how public schools require criminal record checks and repeat drug and HIV tests for all native speaking teachers, regardless of their visa status, while hagwon hiring standards have put three overseas Koreans wanted for murder in classrooms with children.
Of course, true threats to children's safety (like being in a classroom with a wanted murderer) pales in comparison to the perceived threat: that "parents and students will suffer due to so many unverified, unfit native speaking instructors."
Thursday, March 17, 2011
Grant Hill’s Response to Jalen RoseBy GRANT HILL
“The Fab Five,” an ESPN film about the Michigan basketball careers of Jalen Rose, Juwan Howard, Chris Webber, Jimmy King and Ray Jackson from 1991 to 1993, was broadcast for the first time Sunday night. In the show, Rose, the show’s executive producer, stated that Duke recruited only black players he considered to be “Uncle Toms.” Grant Hill, a player on the Duke team that beat Michigan in the 1992 Final Four, reflected on Rose’s comments.
I am a fan, friend and longtime competitor of the Fab Five. I have competed against Jalen Rose and Chris Webber since the age of 13. At Michigan, the Fab Five represented a cultural phenomenon that impacted the country in a permanent and positive way. The very idea of the Fab Five elicited pride and promise in much the same way the Georgetown teams did in the mid-1980s when I was in high school and idolized them. Their journey from youthful icons to successful men today is a road map for so many young, black men (and women) who saw their journey through the powerful documentary, “The Fab Five.”
It was a sad and somewhat pathetic turn of events, therefore, to see friends narrating this interesting documentary about their moment in time and calling me a bitch and worse, calling all black players at Duke “Uncle Toms” and, to some degree, disparaging my parents for their education, work ethic and commitment to each other and to me. I should have guessed there was something regrettable in the documentary when I received a Twitter apology from Jalen before its premiere. I am aware Jalen has gone to some length to explain his remarks about my family in numerous interviews, so I believe he has some admiration for them.
In his garbled but sweeping comment that Duke recruits only “black players that were ‘Uncle Toms,’ ” Jalen seems to change the usual meaning of those very vitriolic words into his own meaning, i.e., blacks from two-parent, middle-class families. He leaves us all guessing exactly what he believes today.
I am beyond fortunate to have two parents who are still working well into their 60s. They received great educations and use them every day. My parents taught me a personal ethic I try to live by and pass on to my children.
I come from a strong legacy of black Americans. My namesake, Henry Hill, my father’s father, was a day laborer in Baltimore. He could not read or write until he was taught to do so by my grandmother. His first present to my dad was a set of encyclopedias, which I now have. He wanted his only child, my father, to have a good education, so he made numerous sacrifices to see that he got an education, including attending Yale.
This is part of our great tradition as black Americans. We aspire for the best or better for our children and work hard to make that happen for them. Jalen’s mother is part of our great black tradition and made the same sacrifices for him.
My teammates at Duke — all of them, black and white — were a band of brothers who came together to play at the highest level for the best coach in basketball. I know most of the black players who preceded and followed me at Duke. They all contribute to our tradition of excellence on the court.
It is insulting and ignorant to suggest that men like Johnny Dawkins (coach at Stanford), Tommy Amaker (coach at Harvard), Billy King (general manager of the Nets), Tony Lang (coach of the Mitsubishi Diamond Dolphins in Japan), Thomas Hill (small-business owner in Texas), Jeff Capel (former coach at Oklahoma and Virginia Commonwealth), Kenny Blakeney (assistant coach at Harvard), Jay Williams (ESPN analyst), Shane Battier (Memphis Grizzlies) and Chris Duhon (Orlando Magic) ever sold out their race.
To hint that those who grew up in a household with a mother and father are somehow less black than those who did not is beyond ridiculous. All of us are extremely proud of the current Duke team, especially Nolan Smith. He was raised by his mother, plays in memory of his late father and carries himself with the pride and confidence that they instilled in him.
The sacrifice, the effort, the education and the friendships I experienced in my four years are cherished. The many Duke graduates I have met around the world are also my “family,” and they are a special group of people. A good education is a privilege.
Just as Jalen has founded a charter school in Michigan, we are expected to use our education to help others, to improve life for those who need our assistance and to use the excellent education we have received to better the world.
A highlight of my time at Duke was getting to know the great John Hope Franklin, John B. Duke Professor of History and the leading scholar of the last century on the total history of African-Americans in this country. His insights and perspectives contributed significantly to my overall development and helped me understand myself, my forefathers and my place in the world.
Ad ingenium faciendum, toward the building of character, is a phrase I recently heard. To me, it is the essence of an educational experience. Struggling, succeeding, trying again and having fun within a nurturing but competitive environment built character in all of us, including every black graduate of Duke.
My mother always says, “You can live without Chaucer and you can live without calculus, but you cannot make it in the wide, wide world without common sense.” As we get older, we understand the importance of these words. Adulthood is nothing but a series of choices: you can say yes or no, but you cannot avoid saying one or the other. In the end, those who are successful are those who adjust and adapt to the decisions they have made and make the best of them.
I caution my fabulous five friends to avoid stereotyping me and others they do not know in much the same way so many people stereotyped them back then for their appearance and swagger. I wish for you the restoration of the bond that made you friends, brothers and icons.
I am proud of my family. I am proud of my Duke championships and all my Duke teammates. And, I am proud I never lost a game against the Fab Five.
Grant Henry Hill
Saturday, March 05, 2011
This will be my usual "End of the Year" List but with the delay, in this year's edition, I will only list my top 10 films of the year and I promise that I will try and get it completed earlier next year.
10. Waiting For Superman
Now I had no real desire to see this film but the more I heard fellow critics talk about it, the more it sounded like I should at least give this film a look. I was thinking one thing when I went into this film and I came out thinking an entirely different idea.
The majority of the Ex-pats here in Korea are teachers, so you will be able to take ownership of this film because you will have actually lived through some of the insanity that is shown in the film. I was very disappointed that the Academy Awards did not nominate this documentary for an award.
The film has a simple idea, What if people can steal your dreams, you secrets and what would happen if this idea was real? It was a new idea and I must say that I found it very interesting and when the film was over, I could not believe that I had actually seen all of this film and after the 2nd time, I am still not sure that I have seen all of this film yet.
The films director was Christopher Nolan and after this film, he has made me think that, If he directs it; I will see it! With his direction he helped the main actors take this film to a new level of film. I was really that impressed with this film.
8. I Saw the Devil (Korean: 악마를 보았다)
Now before we can go into the review we have to go back into actually why this film was banned in the first place.
Back in 2002 Korean set up a film ranking of Restricted rating (제한상영가). Films with this rating were restricted to adults over 19, could only be shown in specially licensed theaters, and could not be advertised or released on home video. The rating was ruled unconstitutional in 2009 after a challenge from the local distributor of Shortbus(Wikipedia)Korea has 1 of these theaters and its in Kwangju.
So when I had heard that the Korea Media Rating Board had given ISTD this rating, I could not believe it. This particular rating has been ruled unconstitutional so I have no idea why they gave it to this film. (All attempt to try and find out why have only led to more confusing comments)
When the Director of this film Kim Ji-woon came out to present the film to us at the midnight screening he stated, through his translator, that this version of the film had received a 14 rating in Canada and I yelled WTF. If you ever see any video of that, the loud fan is me.
The audience was in a great mood, everyone wanted to see the unrated version. Then the film started and the audience saw what happened the first few minutes, you knew hell was coming in the form of Lee Byung-hun and you believed it. The madman took away his pregnant fiancees. He was going to take away him.
This film was different because in most vengeance films, once you catch the person you slowly kill him or her and then the film is over. This one was different because once Choi Min-sik character was captured. Lee took him to the brink of death, then stopped and let him live. This goes on for awhile and after the 3rd time. LBH characters fiancees family ask him to stop the vengeance because its used in movies and this is enough.
What was also nice about this film was the secondary people in this film, both the good guys and the bad ones. They all really helped t take this film to the next level.
What I liked was that the devil CMS had taken 3 of his best hits and he was still alive and when he figured out how the spy was working and who the spy actually was it was time for the hunted to become the hunter once again and then you see what vengeance true cost was.
When the film was over, I knew that this was the version that I wanted in Blu-ray. The audience applauded loudly and no one still could explain to me about the crazy rating. See the unrated version anyway you can.
7. The Edge (Russian: Край, translit. Kray)
Now with films from Russian they have either been hits(9th Company, Night Watch)or Misses(Day Watch, 12) with me. The only reason I saw this film was because of of my students thought I’d like it. She was so right on this film for me.
What we see is a girl running away from men shooting at her and then she falls into a huge river. Then we are told about World War 2 and how the USSR treated Russian prisoners of war and Russian citizens who worked for the Germans. You are then told that these people were sent to exile to live the remainders of their lives working in a very remote part of Siberia.
You are then show a Russian war hero by the name of Ignat, who hates all of these so-called German collaborators. He soon meets and has a relationship with one of the Russian ladies there who has a baby by a German military officer. But Ignat loves trains and you are slowly shown his past. The the film introduces you to a ghost. At last that is what this person is called. This person has lived in an old abandoned train since 1941 and has no knowledge of the USSR German war. To make maters worse she is German and the entire jail city hater her because of this except for Ignat.
Now with this film one was never sure what was coming next and the film told a great story that never seemed too long. I will not spoil the film for you but I will say this when the film was over the majority of the audience applauded and they had smiles as they left the cinema. It was a week later when this film was chosen by Russia to be its’ official film for the foreign-language honor at 83rd Academy Awards. The film deserves to be seen at least twice to make sure that you truly see what this film has to offer.
6. 71-Into the Fire 포화 속으로 (Po-hwa Sok-eu-ro)
I didn’t know much about this film before I saw it. I knew that it was the Korean big screen debut of K-pop star T.O.P (Choi Seung-hyeon) and that the films preview looked like a Korean version of the Alamo or 300. I knew that this was the 2nd film to arrive at the Korean box office about the Korean War this year and after the huge failure of the first one A Little Pond I really wasn’t sure what to expect about this film.
I soon learned that this film was based on a true story in which On Aug. 10, several hundred South Korean soldiers and 71 teenagers were drafted for the national emergency in Pohang. Due to the shortage of men, the small city was left in the hands of the 71 teenagers to try and stop the advancing North Korean Army.
What I really liked about this film was the young hero Oh Jang-beom (played by T.O.P.) When he is placed in command of these 71 teens, you soon discover that he has no idea how to be a leader. All he wants is the war to be over so he can go home and see his mother. In the film, it was stated that he wrote a letter to his mother and he wrote this to her, ” Mother I might die today… I’m not afraid of death, but I’m afraid I might never see you or my brothers again. I wish the war would end soon so I may return to your arms.” You see this thought the film, a simple boy wanting to return home.
I also liked the North Korean officer in charge, General Park Mu-rang (played Cha Seung-won) Once he figures out that he is going against teens, I saw how arrogant he became in his expected victory.
The film has its moments of humor, when the radio man ask by making a call, how they actually can operate a small artillery piece was funny. But as in war film there are the moments of terror that the film shows. The audience I was with were cringing at the final battle scenes. They felt the loss of these young teens who were trying just to stay alive in the insanity of war.
After the film was over the credits stated that Some 60 North Korean soldiers lost their lives while 48 of the 71 boys died. One of the fallen heroes, 16-year-old Lee U-geun, left behind letters addressed to his mother that testify to the horrors of war. When the film showed an actual survivor of the battle talking about that day and crying for his lost friends, the entire audience did not move at all.
This is when I knew that I had just seen a great film that I will want to add to my DVD collection ASAP.
5. The Fighter
Well, going into this film there were no surprises for this lifelong boxing fan. I knew of the boxing record of the main person of this film, “Irish” Micky Ward. I also knew of his brother’s life story and I knew the results of all of Micky Ward’s fights. Even with me knowing all of this is, I still wanted to see this film and I will again when it comes to the big screen here in Korea on March 10, 2011. Yes, the film is that good and maybe you’ll need to watch it more than one time to make sure that you have seen all of what this film is trying to show you about the recent life of Micky Ward.
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’s life story and his background and Mark pulls it off very well. I also watched some of Micky’s fights after I watched the movie and the Mark really acts and shows what a fighter Ward really was. It would not really surprise me to see an Oscar nomination for Mark for his role in this film.
The film starts with a HBO film crew following his brother around and they both think that it’s for a HBO Boxing special and when it’s 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 and to his family. When Mark and Christian are both on their acting game here in this film, you slowly see that this isn’t a good film, it’s a great one.
What I also liked about the film was that they showed the relationship that Micky has with his mother and his sisters. At times it looked like 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 not show the trilogy and for this film that is the right decision. You would need another film alone just to show that epic fight trilogy story.
4. The Town
I had a feeling that this was going to be a good film, I had no idea that it was going to be a great one. This is the 2nd film that Ben Affleck has directed and I have really liked both of them.
What I really liked about this film was that I believed that everyone in this film was from the dangerous streets of Charlestown, a neighborhood in Boston, Massachusetts, in which a lot of bank robberies have occurred in the past. the actors really gave the film a local feel to it.
I also liked how the thefts were tied into the film and how the film ended. I was really disappointed when this film wasn't nominated for Best Film by the Academy.
3. Toy Story 3
I have no idea what will happen in this film but the preview looked awesome and in 3D IMAX, This has all of the hype of being a huge summer hit. I had one question about this film, how could this film be so good and really leave me angry, at the same time be this great of a film.
As I was reading another review of this film, the answer became very clear to me…
Now, we’ve never found out why ANDY had Woody – and in all the time in that house, we’ve never seen Andy’s father. I bring this up, because I’m writing this on FATHER’S DAY. What is Andy’s father situation? The father isn’t there the day the boy goes off to college? We met Andy right after the birth of Andy’s sister – and there was no Father then. I like to think that Andy’s father died in some manner that left Andy’s mom with the money to buy the house and take care of the two kids. Whatever happened to Andy’s father, he was out of the picture significantly in advance of the first film… but… I always harbored the suspicion that WOODY was Andy’s father’s toy. That Woody’s obsessive compulsion to be there for ANDY came from that relationship he had with Andy’s father. And that it was possible, that Woody never necessarily knew this. I imagine that Woody was played with by his previous owner, that he went into the attic – then perhaps when Andy’s father passed away, his Grandmother went through her son’s things and found Woody – remembered how much that Woody meant to Andy’s father – and felt it should go to Andy.
When I read the above part of the article, that’s what click for me also. Where is the father and how did Andy Davis end up with Woody? I was hoping that this film would have answered these 2 questions but sadly it doesn’t and I thought that it kind of hurt the story. If the film is basically about Andy growing up and moving on without his toys, then how can we if we don’t know how they came together?
Now with that one complaint out of the way, this is a really good film and when I saw it in the CGV 4-D Plex, the audience really seamed into it. The film has all of the things I want for a film to be a great one. A fantastic story a somewhat believable plot and one heck of an ending to tie it all together. The scene of the toys at the dumpster, with all of them together was a stroke of pure genesis. I also loved it when Buzz gets accidentally resent into a Spanish speaking mode and he goes crazy over Jessie in a very original way.
I also liked during the credits you are shown a little more of the story and it was a nice surprise.
2. How to Train Your Dragon
For those who do not know “How to Train Your Dragon” is the first in a series of eight books set in a fictional viking world about a young, 10 year old Viking named Hiccup Horrendous Haddock III and his pet dragon, Toothless.
All I really remember about the first time I saw A preview of this film was, that this cost 165 million to make? I thought for sure that this was going to be such a huge failure at the USA Box Office, that I didn’t even bother to read any of the first few weeks reviews of this film.
Then I started to see that the film kept doing good at the Box office and that parents were taking their children to see this multiple times because of their kids enthusiastic word of mouth. So far it has created an outstanding sustained run that led to the film being reassessed as a major success and maybe, the start of a new media franchise for Dreamworks. So when it opened up in South Korea on 20 May, 2010, I knew that I wanted to see the film in 3D. (It is playing in 3D in a Korean dubbed version along with a Korean subtitled version here in the ROK.)
I really had no idea what the film was going to be about so when I saw that it was Vikings vs. Dragons, I though, “OK sounds interesting so far.” The I heard Gerald Butlers voice at the Stoick the Vast: the chieftain of the Viking tribe and Hiccup’s father, the hero of this film. It started to gain my interest. Then when I heard Jay Baruchel as Hiccup Horrendous Haddock III voice, I knew that this was not going to be what I had expected to see in a film.
The idea is quite simple Hiccup wants to become a Viking but he’s going to do it in his own way and his way sure isn’t the Viking way. You see him befriend a dragon and soon many other dragons and then the film really takes off.
I really liked the film and it deserves at least one viewing in 3d, but don’t be surprised if you want to see it more than once.
Now for my number 1 film of the year and I had this film selected before the Academy Awards..
1. The Kings Speech
I had heard from a few people who opinion that I respect that this was a very good film. So when I was able to watch the film, it took me by surprise. This was not a good film, this was a great one and it was the best film that I watched last year.
The film has a very simple idea, what if you never wanted to be King but by your older brothers action, you are thrust into becoming King of the United Kingdom. The other problem is that this new king (King George VI played by Collin Firth) has a stammering speech impediment. The new King is shown trying to correct this problem.
What I really liked about this film was that the actors made you think that you were back in the 1930's and you see how the King overcomes his problem. I loved the scene where the King is watching a newsreel speech given by Adolph Hitler. The look on the Kings face when he realizes that he has to be a better public speaker to go against this person was the shot of the film.
Please see this film when it arrives in Korea on March 17th.