Articles tagged in entertainment

  1. Mitzi the Possum, or Tree Kangaroo?

    Mitzi the Possum My whole family loves The Koala Brothers, which is usually broadcasted on ABC after 8am, just before I depart for work in the morning. The Aussie-animal themed characters are cute, and distinctive. The moral of each episode is usually helping each other out. A nice good feeling kind of show.

    One character that we like is Mitzi, a young "bossy" girl living next to the koala brothers. Vivian and I couldn't really figure out what exactly kind of animal she is -- looks like a koala but with long tails. One day when Vivian flipped through books and saw a photo of tree kangaroo, and thought Mitzi has found her kind.

    Last week at Currumbin we actually took some photos of tree kangaroos -- it was my first time seeing one in person. Does look a bit like Mitzi, doesn't it?

    Tree Kangaroo

    Until I checked the Wikipedia when we came back, and found out Mitzi was in fact a possum!! Well, I still think she looks like a tree kangaroo, but I am not sure whether she really knows her identity anyway, when she is living with 2 koalas and one wombat.

  2. The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy (DVD)

    The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy Vivian and I have actually watched it on the DVD more than a month ago, when I blogged the item on the Babel fish. The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy (H2G2) is a Disney published sci-fi comedy featuring late Douglas Noel Adams' fictional work of the same title. Arthur Dent, an average Brit who craves for tea, escaped the destruction of the planet Earth by hitchhiking onto Vogon's construction fleet by the help of his friend Ford Prefect, a humanoid alien somehow got "stuck" on Earth. They then got picked up by two headed "President of the Galaxy" Zaphod Beeblebrox and another earthling Tricia McMillan, and started their interstellar-adventure to find the question to the answer of the Life, Universe and Everything, that is 42.

    And the reason that I have been procrastinating to write this entry until more than one month later is, that subsequently I loved H2G2 so much and I am now half way through reading the 5th and final book of the series, Mostly Harmless.

    I have previously heard of the Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy, and I know that it has a great following to a point that's almost cultish. However, besides knowing 42 as the ultimate answer to the Life, Universe and Everything (like most comp. sci. students there), I have never got my acts together to read it. Anyway, I am almost there finishing reading the series, but I will share about it later -- let's focus on the movie first.

    It is a comedy rather than a sci-fi. Thou having nice CGI every now and there, you shouldn't expect Starwars-like space duel in there. It is also very much a British comedy (think Monty Python or Black Adder) -- the lines are witty and satirical, but not necessarily "funny". Martin Freeman was good being Arthur Dent, and had quite an enjoyable performance.

    However, this movie also got balanced out by some of the American actors that are just out right laughing out loud type. Sam Rockwell is that super-exaggerated hyper-weird Zaphod Beeblebrox, who probably has the biggest ego in the universe. Very American. Very humours kind of silly. So I guess it has a good combination of both -- witty dialogues and fun acting.

    And everyone loves Marvin -- except maybe the robot itself. The "paranoid android" with brain the size of a planet is really adoring in the movie. He has some of the best lines in the whole movie.

    Plot-wise, it is pretty faithful to the original book -- for only the first 20 minutes. After Dent and Prefect got picked up by the Heart of Gold, they basically just jump to everywhere with the Infinite Improbability Drive. Though the movie also ends with them going to the Restaurant at the end of the universe, but how they got to that point is all totally different. Many die-hard fan hated it, like how fans usually hate Hollywood rendition of almost everything. However, I find those additional plots quite well done. They do change the characters a bit (especially the romance between Arthur/Trillian, Zaphod/Questular), but it does finish off with a somewhat up beat ending.

    It does, however, include quite a few Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy animation entries. Most memorable one is probably about how the existence of God being proved wrong with the Babel fish (as I have blogged previously, which is on the DVD as bonus material). The self-discovery of the sperm whale while it plummets into planet Magrathea was also there and very nicely done, and it is about as thought provoking as in the book.

    And that's one thing about the Douglas Adams' writing. As a self-professed "radical atheist" (i.e. not agnostic), the movie reflects very much his view of "godlessness" and the view that world we see is really what there is. Everything just happens -- randomly and in an improbable fashion. We are all like that self-discovering whale plummeting into a planet -- realising our existence, making sense of the surrounding, and then bang! we are gone. It's full of those pictures in both the film and the books, and some of them can be considered quite offensive (if you can't take light-hearted humour). However, I believe it would be useful, as a Christian, to take some of these out and analyse them, so that we would know how to answer when we are similarly challenged.

    Would I recommend this movie? Yes for sure. I loved it. However, it might not be for someone who gets easily confused in random plots. I was certainly a bit confused watching it the first time as I have never read the book before, so reading at least the first volume might be a prerequisite. It might also not be suitable for those who get easily offended by seemingly heretic religious references, even though they were written as jokes. Go and watch something else instead.

    PS. I rented it from Civic Video next to UNSW for $2 overnight on their Tuesday specials.

  3. The Babel Fish

    Douglas Adams said in The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy about the origin of the "Babel Fish". "The Babel fish," said The Hitch Hiker's Guide to the Galaxy quietly, "is small, yellow and leech-like, and probably the oddest thing in the Universe. It feeds on brainwave energy not from its …
  4. Hitch

    Eeek. I am going to do an out-of-date movie review again, only because Vivian and I cannot afford to go to cinema under our current circumstance. DVD rented this week -- Hitch, a romantic comedy starring Will Smith as the "date doctor", who has been helping desperated men to "sweep off …
  5. Constantine

    DVD we watched on Tuesday this week: Constantine, starring Keanu Reeve as a self-serving exocist trying to buy him own way to heaven, and Rachel Weisz as psychic catholic cop targetted by the son of Satan in this heaven-hell power struggle. My reaction after watching it -- huh?! Yes, it is …
  6. The Interpreter

    Watched The Interpreter on Tuesday night on DVD. Directed by Sydney Pollack and starring Nicole Kidman and Sean Penn, it has quite a twisty plot. An assassination plan that turned out to be fake, but someone who initially cared less turned out wanting to have the president dead. However the …
  7. Anakin is Darth Vader

    Went to Randwick Ritz to see the Star Wars Episode III - Revenge of the Sith last night. We watched the 8:30pm one, a week and half after the it has been released, but the cinema was still packed. The movie is nothing but great - I'll give it a 9 …
  8. Television

    What you see in the picture is not a pile of computer parts that just happen to lie on the floor. It is, however, my new television set in our living room. And total TV time for Scott over the last two days: 30 minutes. And that was already quite …
  9. 原力 在兩千年寫的。很適合想要開始研究 Star Wars 的迷。原力信仰, 原力哲學, 原力迷思.
  10. Last Supper and Star Wars

    Well. Another Star Wars related post. Da Vinci's "The Last Supper" with Star Wars characters. Very well done, especially when you compare with the original.
  11. Grocery Store Wars

    Grocery Store Wars - not long ago in a supermarket not so far away... Cucumber Skywalker, under the apprenticeship of Obi Wan Cannoli, must learn the way of Farm, fight the evil villian Lord Tader, and destroy the Death Watermelon. Very very funny.
  12. Card Shuffling

    7 ways on how to shuffle a deck of cards, with lots of images and demo video. I better learn this one. One reason why I dislike card games is that I usually just make a mess when shuffling.
  13. The Butterfly Effect

    "What if..." it is something we often pondered. What if this event did not happen? What if the result was the other way around? What if something else has occurred on that day?" Watched The Butterfly Effect (Ashton Kutcher, Amy Smart, directed by Bress and Gruber) on DVD with Vivian …
  14. Lord Vader

    Something that has been anticipated so much since the release of Star Wars prequel - we all know that one day this "yappie" yelling 10 year-old kid is going to become that black helmeted villain wielding the dark side of the force. However, we all want to know that what exactly …
  15. The Day After Tomorrow

    I watched Roland Emmerich's The Day After Tomorrow on DVD last night. Interesting idea, boring and predictable plot, really dodgy science, so-so acting - not that I care because of its great post-production special effect. The story is about the "whole world" (which is really just the United States according to …
  16. 3 Necks

    Only most crazy guitarists would want to play 3 necks at the same time, and the article mentioned that Steve Vai as one, which I fully agree. You also need to have a good build and a very strong back to carry the weight.
  17. Review

    Based on Johnson's story on on-line DVD rental, I have decided to give it a try as an alternative to visiting the video shops. I picked Quickflix from half a dozen other fast growing on-line DVD rental stores because of their decent website and user-friendly interface, and test-drove their one …
  18. Down with Love

    I watched the movie Down with Love on DVD last night. This romance comedy is about the match between feminist best-seller author Barbara Novak (Rene Zellweger) and woman's-man journalist Catcher Block (Ewan McGregor). It was actually surprisingly funny with quite a bit of parody to the 60's. The shots were …
  19. Spaceballs Sequel

    Mel Brook is working on a sequel to Spaceballs, due to be out within the next year or two. Spaceballs was one of my favourite comedy, which I briefly reviewed here. Somehow I am more excited about the new Spaceballs than the new Starwars movie.