I’d never even heard of the Independent Spirit Awards, but apparently they exist, and are important enough to garner getting some stars to attend. I pretty much can’t stand any award show these days, but almost always enjoy the opening monologues. I mean, who doesn’t enjoy someone poking fun at all the people about to receive awards and even the award show itself. If you watched the Oscars last night you were probably disappointed by Billy Crystal’s opening monologue, I know I sure was. Maybe it was because Billy couldn’t cuss on national TV, so it came out dry. Let’s face it though, Seth is funnier than Billy.
Category Archives: Movies
On the heels of one hell of an introduction to the MLB Postseason, a lot of us have received the shot in the arm we needed to get captivated by baseball in the form of a dramatic 162nd day of the regular season. Even though the A’s failed to qualify for the postseason for the fifth straight year, my season isn’t quite over yet. Today I’ll finally be heading out to the theater to check out the new Billy Beane flick, “Moneyball.” I’m really curious, and in some ways scared, to see how I feel about it. The movie looks great on paper. A-List actors, well-respected writers, and a critically acclaimed director make it an immediate favorite to win the World Series of baseball movies. Even the reviews are pretty much nothing but solid. I’ve even heard the word OSCAR tossed around. But I’m scared to get my hopes up to high for a movie I’m about to see, let alone one about my beloved A’s. I’ve found over the years, that the way I feel about the team is reflective of the way I feel about the movie, and vice versa. So, I’m especially curious to see how I digest Moneyball, which documents the 2002 season, which will forever be etched in stone in my memory. I went to somewhere in the neighborhood of 30 games that year, including the historic 20th win in a row, as well as the game 2 victory over Boston in the ALDS (Dyslecix and I left the Coliseum with little doubt that this series was a wrap). For that reason, I expect plenty of goosebumps as some of Hollywood’s finest reenact some of my most memorable A’s moments. Every clip of the movie I’ve watched so far has looked pretty bad. I didn’t see The Social Network or Capote, so I don’t really know what to expect when it comes to screenplay and directing. All I can hope for is that the movie doesn’t change the way I feel about the A’s. If anything, I’m worried it’ll make me long for the good ol’ days when my team was a winner. We’ll know, though, if that happens, then the movie was a success. In the meantime, I’m going to take a look at other famous movies about a particular MLB Baseball team and see how it helped form opinion – either about the team or the movie….
Minnesota Twins: Little Big League – I’ve always been neutral on the Twins. On the one hand, they’re a fellow low-budget, moneyball-type team. On the other team, they seem to pop up against the A’s in the playoffs every few years. I love this movie though, for two reasons. The fella who plays Lou is Timothy Busfield, who’s from Sacramento. Even more impressive is that Billy Heywood is played by Luke Edwards. Many of us remember him as the little brother of Fred Savage in the classic Nintendo film, The Wizard. Few of us remember him as the title role in the based-on-a-true-story, I Know My First Name Is Steven.
Chicago Cubs: Rookie Of The Year – The only way you don’t love this movie is if you’re over 30. Otherwise, you dreamed of breaking your arm and magically being able to throw 105 mph. This movie always reminds of a relaxing weekend day, probably because that’s always when it’s on TV. It’s also probably because it’s about the Cubs, so all of the game footage is during the day. People often fail to make the connection between Henry Rowengartner and Kevin from American Pie, but overall, he was good in this movie – except when he struck a guy out and said, “Kewl!” The Cubs have been scouring the Little Leagues ever since, and have yet to find a pitcher as good as Rowengartner.
Cleveland Indians: Major League I & II – I probably would have liked the Indians no matter what, since my best childhood friend’s cousin was the manager of the team from 1991-1999. Even if that weren’t the case, I’d always be a closet Indian fan thanks to the Major League movies. Know what else? I probably would have never picked them to go to the World Series this year either if it weren’t for these movies.
Los Angeles Dodgers: The Sandlot – I’m pulling this one out of my ass here. I’ve seen most of the Sandlot a thousand times, but mostly on TV, and therefore rarely in its entirety. So, if I’m wrong about the kid ending up on the Dodgers, please forgive me. But if it’s true, it’s only fitting that one of that classic group of kids ended up on a good team. I liked the Sandlot gang and I like the Dodgers (with the exception of 1988)
New York Yankees: *61, Pride Of The Yankees, The Scout – For all the movies about the Yankees, I don’t think I’ve seen any of them. That’s pretty reflective of real-life, where I have a vague grasp of Yankees history, but haven’t really made the effort to get to know all the facts.
Anaheim Angels of California: Angels In The Outfield – Don’t like the Angels. Never saw the movie. Looks like a pretty star-studded cast with Danny Glover, Tony Danza, Christopher Lloyd, Joseph Gordon Levitt, Adrien Brody, and Matthew McConaughey. I’m still not gonna go and watch it though. My life seems to be better without the Angels around.
Boston Red Sox: Fever Pitch – I gave this movie a chance, because I thought it would at least be entertaining. Negative feelings about Boston aside, this movie was so bad, so bad, so bad. If this movie was about my favorite team I would stop liking them. I’m trying to picture the Oakland version of this movie, but all that comes to mind is Poetic Justice…
Detroit Tigers: For The Love Of The Game – I’ve never seen this, but it stars Kevin Costner, so perhaps I’m better off steering clear. I know of one friend who swears this is a great movie, but she’s a Red Sox fan, so perhaps I’m better off steering clear.
San Francisco Giants: A League Of Their Own – Tom Hanks plays Bruce Bochy in this touching film about a bunch of women who came together to build a winner. Geena Davis stars as Buster Posey, and Madonna shines as pitcher Matt Cain. Lori Petty scored a breakthrough performance in her role as Tim Lincecum. But perhaps the star of the show was Rosie O’Donnell as Pablo Sandoval. The physical resemblence is out of this world.
Oakland Athletics: Moneyball – TO BE DETERMINED…..
Unfortunately my invitation got lost in the mail somewhere, surely, so I wasn’t in attendance for the movie premiere of “Moneyball” in Oakland tonight. Therefore, I couldn’t really recap it any better than the San Francisco Chronicle. Here’s some highlights…
Brad Pitt, Academy Award winner Philip Seymour Hoffman and Oscar-winning screenwriter Aaron Sorkin were among those on the red carpet at the Paramount Theater in Oakland on Monday evening as “Moneyball,” the movie based on A’s general manager Billy Beane and the 2002 Oakland team, made its national premiere.
“It’s very cool,” Pitt said as he paused on the carpet to speak to two Bay Area papers. “We’ve been gearing up for this viewing for a long time. This is a special screening for us.
“The people of Oakland gave such a great response. They stayed up with us for hours on end to tape the baseball scenes and never lost energy. We see a lot of fans from the ’02 season. It’s just special.”
Having played Beane in a movie, Pitt disclosed that he now follows Oakland, and he said, “I feel a bit romantic about the A’s.”
Another of the major actors, Chris Pratt, has a less than storied baseball background. Pratt, who plays first baseman Scott Hatteberg, said he has not hit a home run at any level, including T-ball, and in the movie, Pratt, a right-handed hitter, must bat lefty. Through the magic of cinema, his homer gives the A’s their record 20th consecutive victory.
Pratt nails Hatteberg’s preparations at the plate, and he accurately captures Hatteberg’s joyous trip around the bases on the game-winning homer.
“None of it was spontaneous,” Pratt said. “That was the one physicality that I really spent a ton of time trying to mimic exactly.”
High-powered baseball agent Scott Boras walked the red carpet, and though he’s called a bad name in “Moneyball,” he described the movie as “great for baseball.”
*Other observations from the Moneyball premiere: Jonah Hill is HELLA skinny. Philip Seymour Hoffman looks like Sandy Lyle again.
Hope everyone had a good holiday weekend. I spent most of it sick, but still had a good time celebrating our independence. I don’t really go to very many movies in the theatre, but seem to usually hit up a few summer blockbusters since friends seem to like to go to them when it’s unbearably hot outside.
Overall Transformers: Dark of the Moon, was what you’d expect. 70% action, 19% cheesy LaBeouf/Duhmel acting, and 11% plot building, so if I have to give it a grade I’d give it a B. I liked the movie overall, and have been a Transformers fan since I was in diapers. The graphics were spectacular, so if you’re simply into action and graphics it’s a movie you should see, as Michael Bay seems to work magic with the green screens. The plot was actually decent as they used old school events from Roswell to a conspiracy theory of our reasons for landing on the moon before the Russians. I also enjoyed Sam Wikwikki’s (sp?) job hunt, and how he had the I saved mankind and still can’t find a job chip on his shoulder. His new girlfriend, Rosie Huntington Whitley formerly a Victoria’s Secret model, isn’t too hard on the eyes for a couple hours to boot.
On the other side of the coin though I thought it was excessively long (maybe it was being sick), but my other friends also thought they should’ve shortened it by a good half hour of needless scenes. I totally understand the final battle between the autobots and the decepticons should be longer than all of the other fights, but it felt like the last scene lasted for half the movie. I’m sure the producers were strongly against cutting any of the million dollar CGI scenes that left the Chicago skyline decimated, but c’mon we all know who is going to win! The only other thing I hated about the fighting in the movie is that some of the robots spewed red blood-like liquid when they were struck or shot. Really!?! Robots spewing blood?!? Some spewed out a yellowish liquid when they were stabbed or “cut”, which for some reason makes more sense to me like it was some discolored ani-freeze. Personally I would’ve like to see the transformers just spew black oil instead of colorful liquids, because it seemed like they were trying a little too hard to make the robots look/be more human. If you need to get out of the heat for an afternoon, Transformers wasn’t a bad way to do it.
While Chappy and I have spent the majority of the 2011 season calling for Bob Geren’s head and preaching conspiracy theories about ownership sabotaging the team, Moneyball the movie has begun to emerge and take us back to the good ol’ days. The movie has been in the works for years now, but it looks like it’ll finally come out this September. It’d be really nice if the A’s were still playing when it comes out, but I’m not holding on to much hope for that. Hopefully it’ll force fans outside of Oakland to wonder, “what the hell happened to the A’s?” A star-studded cast gives the movie credibility, and the presence of Brad Pitt as A’s GM, Billy Beane, will help a lot of guys convince their wives and girlfriends to go with them to see it. Aside from Pitt, I’m interested in seeing Jonah Hill in a serious role, as the fictional Peter Brand, who is actually based on Paul DePodesta. I’m also excited for Andy from Parks & Rec to play Scott Hatteberg. The cast is so stacked that Phillip Seymour Hoffman doesn’t even have any lines in the trailer, and Robin Wright is nowhere to be seen, from what I can tell. The best part about all this for me is that I noticed former Royals pitcher, Jason Grimley, appears on the list of characters. That can only mean one thing – that the incredible 20 game win streak of 2002 is going to be recreated. In fact, I can tell just from the swing that Hatteberg’s walkoff homer from that game is in the trailer. Having been in attendance that night, I already have goosebumps just thinking about that moment being in the film. The downside is the list of filming locations includes Fenway Park, which was the site of games 3 and 4 of the ALDS that year, when the A’s squandered a 2-0 series lead and lost to the Boston Red Sox. That’s going to be a harsh reminder of walking out of the Coliseum after Game 2, thinking the series was in the bag. Nonetheless, you can bet that I’ll be hitting the theater to catch this one when it comes out….
Wow, two boxing posts within two weeks is easily a record for Doin Work! This one doesn’t really have to do with any current boxers, and is merely a quick review of a documentary that one of my former college roomates made. I was in Santa Barbra over Memorial Day Weekend visiting my college friend, Pat Moyer. I’ve been bugging him to get me a copy of his documentary for a LONG time. And by long time I mean since 2008 when I went to SB to see the movie premier, but finally he remembered to give me a copy. I was impressed with the movie the first time I saw it, and thought he and Ryan Petty did a great job of showing what effects boxing has on people mentally and physically after they hang up the gloves. The second time I saw it I liked it more than the first or maybe it was so long ago that I kinda forgot how good it was. Anyways, long story short, I was able to grab a DVD from him, and after watching it, I thought since we had the blog it was as good as anyplace to get the word out about it.
The reason my friend Pat was inspired to make the documentary in the first place was because Denny and Phil Moyer are his grandpa’s brothers. Denny Moyer was the first ever light weight champion, and had a great boxing career. Phil was a little less successful, but was also a good fighter that held his own for quite some time. The documentary shows the ways the brain is damaged, and it takes you through the mentality of different boxers while they are in the ring, and what they are like after they retire. You could even call it a more brutal sport than MMA. There’s nothing crazier than watching Phil and Denny in a clinic walking hand in hand with bike helmets on. Their 90-year old father, Harry Moyer, is much more functional than his sons and tries to see if they remember him, which they seem to but you’re not entirely sure. Harry was their trainer and coach throughout their careers, and still has his head on straight. Phil and Denny were less fortunate, and the power of that footage was crazy. The documentary also follows other boxers, some that are still in the ring, and some retired. If you ever wanted a closer look into boxing without the Hollywood storybook endings like we see in Rocky I-X, this film is perfect for you.
The movie also has tons of great boxing footage (aka: devastating knockouts) that any fight fan can appreciate, and to top it off, all of the proceeds that are made from the movie go the the Retired Boxers Foundation. They haven’t had a mass release of the film, because they’ve had trouble finding a solid distributor, but for the moment, you can follow the instructions below and get a copy if you’re interested. The money being donated goes to a great cause, because just like the NFL, nobody takes care of older retired boxers.
Go to www.retiredboxers.org and click DONATE (upper left side of website under logo) on the homepage, then enter an amount of $15 or more. If your mailing address if different than the one provided by PayPal, click ‘Add special instructions to the seller’ on the payment confirmation page and enter a new address. They will send you a free private screener right away. All donations are tax-deductable.
We would also like to thank everyone for their patience with the film. We are still seeking distribution and hope to continue to build momentum with this project.
You will feel good knowing your donation as gone to help a good cause. Now go donate and enjoy the film! Ryan Pettey-Director -After The Last Round
Awesome video. I usually get a kick out of the college humor website. I’d love to play with Stegosaurus and that Purple Guy, they sound like beasts! I couldn’t figure out if Taz was supposed to be Delonte or not, but either way that part made me laugh…
Now that the food coma has settled down from the weekend, I realized that there were tons of things that happened that I didn’t get a chance to reflect on. Now that it’s back to the grind, I can collect some thoughts on the weekend that was Thanksgiving, and give you some of my leftover thoughts.
It was sad to hear this morning that Leslie Neilsen died last night from pneumonia at the tender age of 84. “The Naked Gun” series was easily one of my favorites growing up, and fell slightly behind “Back to the Future” in the times watched category. In my eyes, Leslie started the spoof/making fun of movies that were already made game, and set the bar way too high for the Waynes Brothers to duplicate with one possible exception “Don’t be a Menace to South Central While Drinking Juice in the Hood”. It’s amazing how times have changed, and even though he’s gone now, Frank Drebbin, errr, I mean, Enrique Palazzo will always be the best hometown umpire we’ve ever seen to call a game (too bad it benefitted the Angels). Thanks for the laughs Leslie, you will always be remembered.
The WolfPack Takes Down Boise State
I had mixed emotions about this game. I’m friends with a ton of UNR graduates, so I was happy for them that Nevada won. At the same time, I was also rooting for Boise to have a shot at the title game, but they didn’t come through. I’ve never pretended to understand the BCS rankings, but doesn’t it seem like Nevada should be ranked higher than Boise since they just beat them?!? I guess not… It was a great game if you didn’t see it, it was shocking that the WolfPack came back from such a large deficit. I really felt bad for the Boise State’s kicker, who missed two field goals at the end of the game. He killed off two years, and 24 straight wins of hard work to get that program to the point where they had a shot at being in the National Championship in a span of a mere twenty minutes. It might have been the least forgivable performance since Andres Escobar scored his own goal in the 1994 World Cup, but fortunately for Kyle Brotzman (the Boise kicker), he lives in America instead of Columbia, and I doubt will be killed for it. He might have to do a Bartman type relocation, but in the end, that’s not that bad. Hopefully he doesn’t turn out like Finkle and kidnap Kellen Moore just before their bowl game next year.
Spygate Part Deux Continue reading
Common is one of my favorite rappers of all-time, let me rephrase that. Common is one of my favorite “emcees” of all-time. There is a difference. ‘Til this day Resurrection still manages to transcend time for me, in fact, Common in general transcends time, as he is still more than relevant to this day. The shelf life for most Hip-Hop artist is like four years. He’s been at it for decades. He might be one of the trendiest artist alive as well. Ask your girlfriend if she likes the way Common dresses, go on … do it. Yeah buddy, I knew she would.
As do many Hip-Hop artists, Common has tried his hand at acting, and has been quite successful at it too. Perhaps he hasn’t done anything in which he’s “stolen” the show so-to-speak, but he’s done enough to raise a few eye-brows. In fact, he’s done enough so to land his first (male) leading role in Just Wright, a movie in which he plays an NBA All-Star who suffers a severe knee injury and must go through a rigorous rehabilitation regiment with the guidance of potential love interest Queen Latifah in attempts to return to the league. O.K. so going from his day job of being a Hip-Hop legend to acting as an NBA baller might not be such a stretch for him being that the two are synonymous with each-other, but still. Give credit where credit’s due, it’s a leading role.
Why we should watch this movie? Well, because we should all support Common, he’s a rapper (emcee) with a positive message and vibe. Those kinds don’t come along too often. Another reason? We’re sports junkies! C’mon, unless it’s a movie like Fighting, or Never Back Down, us guys are usually interested in sports flicks. Especially if it stars, or has cameos of real professional athletes. This one does! I was 11 or 12 years old when Blue Chips was a feature film, and it quickly became one my favorite movies behind Jurassic Park, simply because Penny Hardaway was in it. If those reasons aren’t valid enough, it stars Paula Patton too. ‘Nuff said. —————————–>
One last thing to note, Common plays for the N.J. Nets in this movie. Perhaps this will be the most positive thing for Nets fans to view regarding their team until the next NBA Draft comes along. I’m just saying. Plus he (Common) kind of reminds me of Stephon Marbury when he puts on that jersey … I always like being reminded of Stephon Marbury.
From the Los Angeles Times – Actor Randy Quaid and his wife were booked into Santa Barbara County Jail on Monday afternoon on felony charges connected to their alleged failure to pay a hotel bill, authorities said. Quaid and his wife, Evi, had previously failed to appear in court on felony charges of defrauding an innkeeper, burglary and criminal conspiracy, the Santa Barbara County Sheriff’s Department said. Both were booked in lieu of $100,000 bail, which they posted. The couple left the jail complex about 4:30 p.m. Monday, the department said.
This is too bad. Randy Quaid is three times immortal in my book. First, he became an instant legend in his role as Uncle Eddie in the National Lampoon’s Vacation series. Third, he played Ishmail in one of the Top Two bowling films of all time, Kingpin. Sandwiched in between those two landmark roles was a smaller part but just as legendary. Quaid portrayed a die hard Cleveland Indians fan in Major League, and anyone associated with that movie in any way is all right in my book. I’m not sure how they managed to rack up so many felony charges for simply neglecting to pay a hotel bill. They should’ve gotten it free in the first place. If the weirder Quaid showed up at my Inn, I’d gladly give him a place to stay. You can’t just let Randy Quaid get munsoned out in the middle of nowhere!
I know I’ve said in the past how much I love ESPN’s 30 for 30 series. If there was a channel dedicated to these short documentaries, my DVR would be full no question about it. Last night ESPN aired a 30 for 30 on the origins of fantasy sports. I was really excited to see what they came up with, but it was the first time I was truly disappointed by one of their short films. They’ve done a great job up to this point making moments in time or people that I didn’t care about, and turned them into interesting stories. I figured that a 30 for 30 about fantasy sports would be great, because I’ve been playing since 2000, and figured I’d see some more insight on how it grew. Maybe I expected too much or this film maker wasn’t up to the task. I mean, it’s pretty cool how it all came about, and these baseball nerds made the game that millions of Americans waste thousands of hours on each year. The problem with this short film wasn’t the story, so much as the execution. They had all the original guys, they interviewed the right people, but the acting, and set up sucked. I’m not sure if they were trying to be funny or not, but I felt like I was watching a group of porn stars acting without taking off their clothes. Continue reading
I’m not much of a movie buff, but I did catch a few of the flicks this year including Avatar. I was actually slightly disappointed with the 3D as I was hoping they would’ve made it more Disney style. You know, like in Captain EO and the parts when the stuff in the film feels like it’s flying at you, and you find your self flinching or wanting to grab something that isn’t there. Avatar was more 3D from the screen and back. I want it to come at me! Maybe I had too high expectations, but all in all it was a pretty good movie. I think it’s ridiculous that some people want to join the Navi culture, but if anyone would fit in with them it’s probably the tallest of our species, NBA players. I remember when this clip first came out, I thought this has Nash inspiration written all over it. If you were a player, how could you not like playing in Phoenix!?! You have Nash, the most ridiculous man in the world, great weather, a free flowing offense to pad those stats in, and you don’t even have to play defense. Even the fans are pretty good sports like this guy who got a face full of iron! Then you get Barbosa dressing up on the plane and scaring teammates (Lopez’s reaction was priceless). I most likely won’t catch any of the show tonight, but I’ll predict that Avatar gets at least six awards, and one will be best spinoff, by the Phoenix Suns.
Mel Gibson is back in the news. What’s ironic is he got upset that the interviewer was talking about his screw ups and Mel was pissed off that he was bringing up the past. Thankfully, Mel gave us another gem when he called the reporter an asshole before they cut off the feed. Mel Gibson is fast approaching trainwreck status, because although this particular incident wasn’t that bad, I’m more concerned with his demeanor. Either that’s his 6th cup of coffee, or Mel’s on one. It looks like he killed a 12 pack and downed a shot of Tom Arnold before the interview. My main conspiracy theory, though, is that Mel Gibson is really a character portrayed by Allen Covert, of Grandma’s Boy fame. Since Gibson was obviously around long before Covert burst on the scene, there’s only one possible scenario…. Mel Gibson did in fact die in that car crash years ago, and Covert assumed his identity.