Thursday, December 11, 2014

Promising Crop of Films

Watching some trailers and talking about movies with people, there are some promising crop of films slated for release between the end of 2014 through 2016.  I might not see all the same movies as other people as promosing.  But here are some I am looking forward too.

"Paddington" (2014)

"Padington" starrs Ben Whishaw as Paddington and Nicole Kidman as Millicent.  Now "Paddington Bear" was around before I was born, but it still was something that was apart of my childhood.  The trailer was funny and one movie I'm looking forward to seeing when it comes to North America in January.  It was already released in the United Kingdom at the end of November and according to what I've looked into the movie, it has mostly positive reviews.  Not that I buy into what the reviews say.

Trailer #1

Trailer #2

"Jurrasic World" (2015)

I'm a fan of the "Jurassic Park" series of movies.  I enjoyed the element of human and dinosaurs.  It's an interesting concept which we won't get to see ever.  With "Jurassic World" being released next year, the thought of a hybrid dinosaur is something we can only dream and fantasize about.  If it lives up to the others, we'll have to wait and see.

"Spongebob Movie: Sponge Out of Water" (2015)

I can't believe "The Spongebob Squarepants Movie" was released ten years ago in 2004.  This is the second movie in the "Spongebob Squarepants" series.  What I find to be odd is that in this movie, unlike the series or first film, is that being out of the water isn't effecting them (not including Sandy as she is a land creature).  I enjoyed the first movie for what it was and I hope this second movie will be as equally enjoyable.

Trailer #1

Trailer #2

"Home" (2015)

Dreamworks Animation has had some hits and misses when it comes to the animated style of films.  The hits (or my personal favourites) are "Shrek," "Shrek 2," "Shrek the Third," "Shrek Ever After," "Bee Movie," "Kung Fu Panda," "Madagascar," "Madagascar 2: Escape From Africa," "Madagascar 3: Europe's Most Wanted," "How to Train Your Dragon," "Puss in Boots," and "The Croods."  The rest either I didn't care for or haven't seen.

"Home" staring Rihanna as Gratuity "Tip" Tucci, a teenage girl and Jim Parsons as Oh, a member of the Boov race.  It also has the voice of Steve Martin as Captain Smek, the leader of the Boov race and Jennifer Lopez as Lucy Tucci, Tip's mother.  A stellar cast with a story of two people from different races who form a friendship while on the run from the Boov's enemy.  I dig the trailer.  Parsons seems like he channeled a bit of the Sheldon Cooper persona or quirks.  I can dig that.

"Minions" (2015)

I've seen parts of "Despicable Me," but I didn't care for it.  "Minions," which is a prequel, looks a lot better than "Despicable Me."  I like the story of how they must survive regardless even if they don't have a "master," for a lack of a better term, to be a minon too.  It's a story of do or die or put up or shut up.  It might be cliche, but by the looks of the trailer, it might work in this instance.

"Strange Magic" (2015)

Even though George Lucas has nothing to do with the "Star Wars" franchise anymore, that doesn't mean he isn't still making movies.  "Strange Magic" was in the works long before Disney aquired LucasFilms.  They said they are not Disney or Pixar and wanted this film to remain a LucasFilms production.  That I can respect.

I like this idea of that director Gary Rydstrom said of Lucas that he "really wanted to make a beautiful fairy tale with goblins and elves, and do it in a way that only this company can do."  The trailer looks absolutely phenomenal and I hope this animated film can live up to what the trailer has shown us.

"Paul Blart: Mall Cop 2" (2015)

The first one was hilarious and I am hoping the sequel can be just as funny.  The trailer leaves something, but I'm going to go out on a limb and try to see it.  The story is a flip flop compared to the first film.  But than again, being in the same setting wouldn't necessarily make for a good movie.  Hopefully this sequel isn't a dude.

"Popeye" (2016)

The classic cartoon returns to big screen for seemingly the first time in well over 30 years.  This early trailer doesn't show much.  So with that being said, I can't say for sure whether or not it looks good.  But being as I watched "Popeye" growing up, I probably will end up seeing it.

"The Cobbler" (2015)

Before I watched the trailer, I thought it was a rendition of "The Elves and the Shoemaker."  I could tell by the thumbnail that it would be another in the line of Adam Sandler dramedies ala "Click," "Jack and Jill," "Spanglish" and others.  One part of the trailer pretty emotional.  That's where the drama comes in to play.  It looks pretty deece and worthy of more than being on the fence about it.

"Project Alamanac" (2015)

Not always into sci-fi films, but this one seems interesting even if it has something to do with Michael Bay.   A movie about time travel and how it can effect events is how they scripted "Back to the Future."  I've never always been a believer of time travel, but back in high school this one guy was open to the idea.  He said, paraphrasing of course, that we should be open to the idea.  Maybe time travel is possible.  Many a movie and TV series have done something with time travel.  This one looks different than your usual time travel film.  Seems to also have a thriller aspect in parts of it.  Parts of it have this feel good, hedonistic element to it as well.  I say that it looks deece and worthy of more than being on the fence.

Trailer #1

Trailer #2

There are some films I'm on the fence about.

"Inside Out" (2015) - Disney Pixar: This trailer leaves me wanting something more.  For a Disney Pixar film, they usually do a good job of getting you wanting to see it.  Not with this film.  Maybe a second trailer might fill that void.

Those are most of the trailers I've watched.  I've also watched "Terminator: Genesys" and "Star Wars: Episode VII - The Force Awakens."  Those two don't excite me.  With that being said, the end of 2014-parts 2016, movies are seemingly in good hands.  But with more trailers being released, it can only get better.

Sunday, December 07, 2014

Not in the Christmas Spirit Yet

I like Christmas.  This is a time to reflect on the past year.  Or so they say.  It is also a time to spend with family and friends with good food and coversation.  I love Christmas carols whether they be traditional or non-traditional.

We are deep into the 2014 Christmas season.  But this year, I'm not feeling it as much as in the past.  I just need something to get me in the spirit.  I haven't been listening to a lot of Christmas carols/music.  Although I can't go a Christmas season without listening to Boney M.'s "Christmas Album."  The odd time I will give the Kenny Rogers and Dolly Parton Christmas album "Once Upon a Christmas."  Oh my childhood.

With that being said, I've had egg nog.  As good as that is, that hasn't gotten me into the spirit.  I've seen a little bit of Christmas programming on TV.  That hasn't gotten me into the spirit.  I'm not a Grinch by any means, but I just need that one thing.

This time of the year is so busy with Christmas parties, Christmas shopping, and getting everything ready for the holidays that we sometimes forget the meaning of Christmas.  Maybe a Christmas movie marathon is in order.  Classics like "Home Alone," "Home Alone 2: Lost in New York," "Scrooge," a first viewing of "A Christmas Story" (never seen it), etc. etc..  Or maybe listening to a ton of Christmas music might be in order.  Or maybe going to the Crackers Christmas gathering on the 14th might be in order as well.

Whatever it is, I'm sure I'll find it.  One thing is a bummer, one of my good buddies will not be home for Christmas as he has to work over it..  But another buddy should be home.  I'll have to ask him.

I wish you and yours a safe and merry Christmas and a safe and happy New Years.

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Remeberence Day, Remembering Our Heroes

It is Rememberence Day here in Canada.  It is a day in which we honour our veterans past and present who have given their life to serve Canada so we may have the freedom we have today.  In the United States, they call it Veterans Dau, but that is celebrated in May.

With that being said, I was aware of Rememberance Day when I was growing up.  I knew what the poppy was for and that "In Flanders Field" was associated with Rememberance Day.  I would also take a moment on silence, or I never went to any Rememberance Day services or any of that kind of thing.  That was the extent of it.  More now in the last few years, I've started to recognize the serve our armed forces have made is soemthing that is invaluable.  There is a difference between recognizing and supporting our troops.  I'm not a bumper sticker or online supporter that doesn't actually do anything to support the troops.  I made a couple of posts on this topic which you can see here and here 

I might get heat for this, but you don't have to just remember the sacrifices our soliders made for us on Rememberance Day.  The following is not Canadian, but shows you don't have to just thank or remember someone on Rememberance Day or Veterans Day.

This 95-year-old WWI veteran, Joe Bell, was just watching the race from his front yard when people started making their way to him shaking his hand and thanking him because he served.  It shows you that you that even though there is a specific day for honouring our veterans, you can do it anytime.

That doesn't mean I won't take this time to thank our troops and soldiers past and present for their service.  My Grandpa Sheldon was even in the Navy although he didn't leave land.  V41625 was his number.  If I had a copy of the picture of him in his uniform, I would put in this post.  But alas, I don't.

It's not only the people that served that we should thank.  Someone on Facebook shared a picture that also makes you think.

We should also remember the animals that served in war.  You might "think who cares?"  They were at various times in wars important.  We need not forget their contributions.  When we think of honouring our veterans, we think of the humans.  But there are animal veterans as well.  I thank all veterans, human and animal that gave their life so we can enjoy the freedoms we enjoy today.

Lest we forget.

Sunday, November 09, 2014

Album Update #1: Deep in the Process

So, I'm deep in the process of recording my album.  I didn't think I'd ever record an album.  But I've taken the plunge and I'm doing it.  I have three songs officially done and one done from my end.  "Missed My Bus," "Fifty Fans," and "Absence" are the ones that require only guitar and voice.  "On My Way to Manitoba" requires some extra elements like a harmonica, banjo, and an extra guitar part.  Otherwise it is close to being finished and ready for production and engineering.

"Absence" was the song giving me most trouble.  I know it, but I find that recording guitar and vocal separate is something I'm not used to.  I'm used to playing and singing at the same time.  Sure some songs are easier to record separate tracks like "Missed My Bus."  But I've got to master recording separate tracks.  In total, I have 13 songs to record.  This is a process and it will be rewarding to see the end product.

When the album is out, you will be able to get a physical copy, purchase it on iTunes, and purchase on  Well, those are the places that I will be putting it on at this point.  But keep checking back to see if there will be any other online outlets that will be selling the album.  For now those are the three ways to get it.  Other things relating to the album will be coming in due time.

There you have it.  The first album update.  Many more will be coming.

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Sunday, January 05, 2014

Gamers Paradise #1: Flash Games - A Underrated Way to Game

First I'll give you the obligatory happy New Years.  So thoughtful, I know.

Here is a series I am doing on various things in video games and video gaming. I originally thought on just gaming in general including such things such as board games, but that's a whole topic on it's own.  So here we are with "Gamers Paradise."

Trying to research the history of flash games and flash gaming, it's hard to find much on the history of flash gaming.  But I have found a couple of sources.  It's not necessarily what I was looking in terms of the type of sites they are, but it's a start.

From what I'm reading, flash gaming got it's start way back in 1995.  It started with a company known as Macromedia.  In 1996, the company started using their software on websites.  The purpose was to give websites animation and interactive aspects.  The software producers recognized his usefulness and improved its functionality in a variety of ways.  Macromedia started creating web based games.  This turned out to be a popular way for casual gamers to game.  It brought a new face to casual gaming.  The original games were simple, free, and child-friendly.  Although, tons of flash games are still free.

As time went on, the games evolved.  Other flash game producers started popping up.  They would not just create original games, but they developed flash version of classic console games like "Super Mario," "Sonic the Hedgehog," "Asteroids," and many others.  Even early mobile phone classics such as "Snake" made it's way onto the web and has become a popular game.  The landscape of flash gaming is always changing and evolving.

Getting a sort of history out of the way, I have always liked flash gaming.  It is a great way to pass the time. But that is only one thing, I like about it. Comparing flash gaming from when I first played them to now, they are constantly evolving.  There are some really good games!  I'm not just saying that.  The flash gaming fans are saying this.  This one day, my friend Mark and I spent a day playing flash games.  We were on Skype while playing them.  Some of the games we were playing are really good.  Some of them were not as good of course.  But here are some great games that I've found that I recommend you try.

1. Deep Sleep
2. Deeper Sleep
3. A Small Talk at the Back of Beyond
4. The Last Door: Prologue
5. The Last Door - Chapter 1: The Letter
6. The Last Door - Chapter 2: Memories
7. Reincarnation Series
8. Musaic Box
9. Gold Miner

Those are just a handful of games I've enjoyed.  You can find tons of other games that you may like.  All you have to do search for sites and find what sites you enjoy because flash gaming is over saturated with sites that host games.  Here are some reasons why you should look into flash gaming and flash games.

1. Storylines - Great storylines in a number of games.  The developers took the time to write a great storyline.  If the first six games had a shit storyline, than it wouldn't be worth playing because their is nothing backing the rest of the game.  A good storyline is key in certain types of games to get a person hooked.
2. Graphics/Animation - There are a variety of graphics that are used in flash games.  "The Last Door" series has pixel style graphics.  You might think that's stupid.  But it works well for that series.  Other games has different style of animation or graphics.  They work well for those games.  So don't dismiss a game because of the graphics.  Yes graphics have evolved in video gaming in general, but give a game a chance.  Don't judge a book by its cover.  Or in this case, don't judge a game by the graphics/animation.
3. Music/Sounds - Some flash games may not have the most up-to-date sounds and or music in them.  But that's part of what makes them great.  The midi sound is nostalgic.  Sure it's good to have to sounds and music that is more modern in gaming, but flash games don't have to fit into that mold.  That is what is makes them great.

As stated above, there are lots of sites that you can play flash games on.  Hell, even some social media sites have games that you can play.  But one of my favourite sites is  It has a ton of flash games.  But the beauty is that you can earn badges which give you points that help you in leveling up.  It's a site that I've been on for a number of years and you can a lot of time playing games with and without badges.  That is one site I highly recommend.

Another I have known about and played on at various times is  It has tons of games that are both single player and multiplayer.  It has a great selection for you browse.  They are always adding new games.

Other sites include  It has been a popular site for sometime with a lot of popular games. is a site that was at the forefront of flash gaming.  It was created in 1995 and has put some popular games of their own.

Tom Fulp, founder of, created a wildly popular flash game Alien Hominid.  Since it's initial release, it has been released on various consoles and handheld gaming devices between 2004-2007.  This proves that popular flash games can become a popular title outside of the flash game realm.

Flash games are great way to do something different in gaming.  It might not be a popular way to game with everyone and it doesn't always get the same respect as console, handheld, or computer gaming.  My friend Mark says he'll try any game even if it's flash gaming.  I'm into a variety of different styles of gaming and flash gaming is one of them.  I find it enjoyable and great way to find a good series of games.  What I'm waiting for is part three of the "Last Door" series and I know it's not been announced, but I would love "Deepest Sleep."

Give flash gaming a try.  You might find you like it as much or even more than I do.