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  1. zug

    Computer Chess

    Interestingly enough, I saw this first start to get some acclaim in my tech circles for how accurately it captures so many tech details and geek social tendencies. Here's the Pando Daily review that caught my eye – http://pando.com/2013/12/26/computer-chess-is-the-years-best-movie-about-technology/ After seeing it also end up on Jeffrey's year end list, Jen and I sat down to watch it this AM. Holy cow. Blown away. It's probably my tech background, but this has easily shot into my top films of all time. And for those unfamiliar with it, here's a link to the wikipedia background on Schrödinger's cat – http://lks.gd/chesscat – which I think draws the nature of the film together perfectly.
  2. zug

    Blue Valentine

    Jen and I just saw this last night. Reading this thread, I'm struck by the subtle, but clear, plotline… As such, I don't really see Cindy as innocent in all this. She's been deceptive and, because of that has kind of decided that…
  3. zug


    ** SPOILERS ** Easily one of my top 10 films of all time -- it is less about the pro hipster/life/choice/divorce/yada themes and more about this idea of covenant. The entire weight of the movie to me comes down to what are you gonna do Juno? Your idea of the good life (and the future of your baby) has just been shattered. You are driving away in tears in your beater blue mini-van (a subtle visual token to the myth of "happily ever after"). We are worried that you are driving too fast. You are going past concrete pylons. Your hipster coping mechanism cannot clever it's way out of this one. Throbbing in her head, "Maybe our entropy toward cacti is inevitable". How can this stop. And then she pulls off the road and Reitman crafts the frame meticulously. There is a train moving steadily by to the left (zug in German means train). There is a broken boat, sunk as it were, to the right, just next to the beater mini-van. What are you gonna do Juno? Is this whole thing (kids, love, marriage, life, the existential hopelessness of humanity) sunk? And in the end it comes down to her routing around for a yellow receipt to write on -- but not just any receipt -- a jiffy lube receipt (recall 'lube' form any other scene?) that she grabs for specifically -- her beater van is strewn with paper, but she particularly goes for that receipt -- that agreement, that contract between the technicians at Jiffy lube who worked on her (or her parents) car -- and she write on it, something that we do not know until later way after she drops it old school (or rather 'Old Testament') style onto the doorstep of the couple, like Moses into the river. It isn't until we see the frame where the "family picture" was supposed to be in the nursery that it begins to dawn on us what this act actually meant -- in red marker (or crayon perhaps) she has said, "I'm in if you're in" -- as compelling an act of faith as one I have seen in film -- that "as for me and my household", everything may be going to shit and though I would like to control it (in a uniquely American individualistic hipster sorta way), I'm gonna do what I can and trust that the crocodiles of real life (which is not mythical "happily ever after land") are not gonna kill, well, at least me and this decision that is in front of me right now. Like I said great film -- that it is not watered down to 1 binary choice is brilliant -- it is about the thousand daily choices to see "the sunshine coming out of your significant other's ass" come hell or high water. --- As a dad of a smart sassy 5 year old girl, I love this film because it does not lie to her on this particular point -- "happily ever after" is the myth that I believe kills many of our American marriages -- as my daughter asks if she can watch barbie this or disney bumbling dad that, I will often respond with no -- and when she asks why, I often say something like -- "because barbie lies to us -- this is not what beauty looks like" -- or "in the real world, little girls are not always at odds with their daddies" -- there is something here in Juno that resonates deeply with me on this.
  4. Two live sets from KEXP are at -- http://www.kexp.org/aspnet_client/KEXPView...D=539&artist=SZ and another at -- http://www.kexp.org/aspnet_client/KEXPView...D=539&artist=SZ
  5. 'Seven Swans' came in at #31 on KEXP's top albums of 2004. They played 'Transfiguration' on the coutndown. See full list at -- http://www.kexp.org/programming/charts.asp...0&chartDate=Now
  6. Link not working (for me at least).
  7. A link to a copy of the no depression article from earlier this year -- http://www.angelfire.com/al/rbmusic/nodepressionarticle.html
  8. In "Mean Creek" the Killing of the snail by the "innocent" girl. The Fall is plastered all over that film and that scene in particular. Nothing in a long time has said welcome to the curse while encompassing the loss of innocence involved.
  9. zug

    Primer (2004)

    Saw this at Seattle International Film Festival this summer and Shane was there for Q&A afterwards. Was very moved by it --This is the most thoughtful time travel piece I've seen -- though 12 Monkeys was epic. Funny thing was that the Seattle audience -- for all of it's 'sophistication' was baffled by 'what really happened'. Very funny to watch a SIFF 'passhole' (the term the passholders even call themselves) come right out and ask Carruth for an explanation. Again, very funny.
  10. zug


    We're doing a screening of Saved! (with discussion to follow) for our monthly film and theology group on Friday Oct 8th, 2004 at a home in South Seattle. Desert at 6:30 -- film rolls at 7pm -- email info at harambeechurch dot com for directions. Would love to have any Seattle folks drop by. Other upcoming features include "Eternal Sunshine..." in November and "Collateral" for December. Much Love -- pastor z
  11. zug

    Mean Creek

    Jen and I just saw Mean Creek this last weekend at the Harvard Exit theater in Seattle (our favorite movie theater of all time). We were both blown away. It's definitely in my top 10 of all time and a think a battle with Magnolia for the number 1 spot may be brewing. I'm going to start going over previous posts to see if there are any fatal flaws I didn't pick up on a first viewing. Will some observation later, once I've caught up.
  12. I also forgot until I just posted that I'm using that icon of my dog because it reminds me of Frank the rabbit.
  13. Not for Donnie -- the $12 tickets were all gone by the time I heard about it and they only had $25 tickets left -- but we did see Primer and enjoyed the Q&A afterward with the writer, director, star. We are going to see Garden State this on June 11 at the Cinerama.
  14. Magnolia all the way. The Mission is way too easy. Not that it's not a great film, but it's strength is around themes that are central to the Gospel (justice, grace, etc) but obvious (it's called the mission) and set in a distant time and place. Magnolia, on the other hand, is surprising and contextualizes central Gospel themes (forgiveness, the miraculous in the face of rationalism, etc) in the world of now like few films in recent cinema. The times that I've done Magnolia for our film and theology groups have been some of the best. (Yes people stay to talk for a couple of hours AFTER the 3hr 8 min runtime). Your choice should probably be determined by what your goals are. There are plenty of great films like the Mission that I would never show to my audience because other films bring the Gospel to them with more immediacy. (e.g. We will NEVER watch Babette's Feast though it is a great film with huge Gosepl themes). This quarter for example, I'm doing: Whale Rider Donnie Darko Tupac Resurrection Previously I've done: Magnolia The Sopranos Fight Club Frailty The Matrix (there really is only 1) Signs Smoke Signals Holes The Two Towers Finding Nemo Bowling for Columbine Monster
  15. zug

    21 Grams

    mrs. zug and I just saw this last night and thought it was really compelling. I have to disagree with some of the previous posts and say that the resulting theme did strike me as very redemptive. First of all, the darkness of the film is not over the top. I suppose that it will strike those who have been acquainted with grief differently than those who have not. All I can say is I can relate. The guilt, and resulting bitterness toward God, that drives Del Torro
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