Month: April 2014

What Am I Reading? 3 of 6

The following post is the third of six revolving around what I am reading (comics) in 2014. Every post will cover two months, and therefore this one will cover May and June – though I’ll comment on a twist of events in April.

So, in the months of March and April I basically decided to stay clear – stay away from comics. Somehow it had lost its hold on me, or maybe I was just trying to move back in University-mode. Though, something incredible happened in April – as I started using Comixology a lot more, and returned into comics in a big way!

I decided to read up on Scott Snyder’s run on Batman (New 52), and I’ve got to tell you – it’s absolutely amazing. As of the end of April I believe Comixology has 30 issues up, and I’ve managed to read every single one. The opening arc is very interesting as we dive into uncharted waters with a court of incredible origin, this sets up a disgruntled Bat who must then come across an old friend in need of… Let’s call it a scary form of ‘romance’, bromance or whatever. Read it and you’ll know what I’m talking about. I’d say the first 20 issues are possibly the best comics I’ve ever read, plotwise, but I must admit my interest sort of failed as Edward Nygma was introduced in the Zero-Year arc. I really don’t have any interest in this current arc, and that’s really scary for me.

Then it hit me, I hadn’t read Marvel for a while – and that’s where my roots are at. I decided to go into something easy to go through, and that became Hickman’s run on Avengers and the New Avengers. This peaked my interest, especially the latter run, and inspired me to update my Guardians of the Galaxy-issues and try to go through the Infinity-Event from the angle of the event books, the Avengers, the New Avengers and the Guardians. I’ve yet to do this completely, and therefore I predict that’s what I’ll be doing in the coming months.

In addition to the Infinity-storyline I also really want to read up on ‘Superior Spider-Man’, its premise is really interesting and out there – and that really gets me. I feel repowered in my search for a comic book home. Thank God for Comixology, DC and Marvel.

– I’m Jeffrey Rex.

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NFL: Mini Mock Draft 2014

It’s that time again folks! The time in which fans gather, for a few days a year, to either curse their GMs’ names or drink to a huge improvement. The NFL Draft for 2014 is upon us. Now, I’ve made numerous of Mock Drafts in my life, all of which have been featured on old blogs – so this will be my first Mock Draft on WordPress.

Now, here’s how I’m doing it. This year I’ve added what I guess you could call a ‘Recipe for Prediction‘, and here’s how it goes:

  • Each Draft pick for the 1st round will be covered in, 2 sections each.
  • Section number one: Scenario 1, that’s right I’m drafting in 2 different scenarios a pick. This way, I won’t be calling for just one player (thus harming my chances at being correct).  Scenario 1 is the scenario in which I get to pick for each team, meaning I don’t predict – I pick.
  • Section number two: Scenario 2, in this section I will try to predict for each GM and coach.

So,  let’s get to the 2014 NFL Draft, but first a sneak peek at what my mock draft my look like in the future drafts to come, as I go ‘in-depth’ with Houston. This year, however, it won’t be in-depth – but I hope to finish a Draft Board for my Chicago Bears before the draft itself.

Sneak Peek on future Mock Drafts (Perhaps 2015): FIRST OVERALL PICK – THE HOUSTON TEXANS

War Room: The Texans were completely derailed last season, and though they have weapons on both sides of the ball, they need game changers to take over their division. The one position that screams for a replacement is the Quarterback-position, but I’m unsure as to whether they have to draft one in the 1st round, or if they could potentially gain from waiting until the second round. Sometimes you need to pick the best player remaining.
Scenario 1: Jadeveon Clowney, South Carolina, Defensive End / Outside Linebacker; I do believe a suitable quarterback can be picked up in the second round, and you can never stop strengthening your defense. Just imagine J.J. Watt and Clowney together.
Scenario 2: Johnny Manziel, Texas A&M, Quarterback; Sometimes you have to go all in on the player with the most hype surrounding him. Johnny has been hyped for a long time, but can perhaps silence his critics with a Texan offense ready to do battle for the AFC South throne.

Mock Draft (Scenario 1)

Screenshot 2014-04-26 14.20.18Screenshot 2014-04-26 14.20.34

Screenshot 2014-04-26 14.20.50

Mock Draft (Scenario 2)

Screenshot 2014-04-26 14.25.25Screenshot 2014-04-26 14.25.36

Screenshot 2014-04-26 14.25.44

This wasn’t much, but that’ll do for this year – I think. I would encourage you to try to make your own mock draft on NFL.com. I admit, this one might be the worst looking Mock Draft – but I needed it to be finished sooner rather than later, and I had no time to go over each pick like I imagined.

Am I right on? Or, do you see some picks that you thoroughly disagree with? Then comment, and we’ll talk it out.

– I’m Jeffrey Rex.

REVIEW: Noah (2014)

When talking about movies like Noah or the Passion of the Christ, one migth evaluate the motion picture by how it fits in the original scripture. That is NOT how I will be reviewing this movie, I’ll be looking for Aronofsky-signatures, spirituality and how it moves forward as a story. Obviously, some SPOILERS may come forth in this post. I feel like I need to clarify that I do believe in a God, but I don’t swear by one sole book of scripture – and it will not impact the review at all. Also, I am not a vegetarian or vegan – and why am I saying that? Well, you’ll know soon.

I really like the cast of this movie, and how can you not? With actors and actresses known for their amazing performances appearing in the movie. Russell Crowe is really great in this role, and had he not been the somewhat superhero-like Noah – I don’t think it would’ve worked. As he goes from trusted father, to trusted servant of the Creator and all the way to Castaway-Tom Hanks. And there is something you need to know when watching this film – there’s a reason why it’s not called the Arc. This story is about Noah first, and the Arc second.

You will quickly recognize the motion picture signature of Darren Aronofsky in this film, as the fast cutting of images from all over the bible often appear – like how he showed the rush of addiction in Requiem for a Dream. Does it work in this film, however? I wouldn’t say so, but it does make me feel better about the film. So, apparently Aronofsky’s a vegan – and… I fear that may’ve impacted the screenplay too much – as I feel condemned almost at the very beginning of the movie. Early on in the movie we have adult Noah facing off with other men, who’ve just killed an animal to eat it. As Noah explains how they do it because they think it makes them strong, he quickly notes that that is not the case – only the Creator makes us strong. I don’t like how that was entered into the movie, and I did feel weird when watching that.

Now, I like the different approach to the movie – but I strongly disliked how the fallen angels looked like ents from Lord of the Rings. It felt somewhat silly, I must say. There are a couple of questionable decisions in the plot, all made by Noah himself. All involving the question of prolonging the human experience on Earth. This different take on Noah is really interesting, but as it moves forward it feels more like the story of Job. In a way this movie tries to be too big, trying to tell the tale of the entire first testament of the Bible. Also, trying to make it feel like a movie from the Tolkien universe – a different approach, indeed.

There’s also the question about symbolic interpretation and spirituality. In this case I fear I am not the one to judge, but my mother, who I consider to be very spiritual, even cried at the end of the movie – saying its message and symbolism was beautiful. I don’t feel as strongly about its symbolism, but I trust that my mother knows her messages in cinema. In the end, I enjoyed it somewhat, even if I felt it was severely flawed.

Overall: 6 out of 10.0. A movie that tries to be too much at once, but has a message that can shine through you if you are open to it.

 

– I’m Jeffrey Rex.

REVIEW: The Amazing Spider-Man 2 (2014)

TAMS2 Poster

Release Poster – Columbia Pictures

Today I want to talk to you about success. But before I do that, one should not be surprised to hear that I will be going over heavy SPOILERS for this movie and the franchise in general. Are you not caught up on the Spidey cinematic experiences, then stay clear. One of the most talked about movies in the last few years, at least on social media, was Sharknado. (more…)

Documentary Watch: Blackfish & We Are Legion

In what can only be described as a serious veering from personal subjects, I am going to dive into a puddle of films that I don’t usually cover. Sure, I’ve seen Inside Job (2010), the odd documentaries I might find on Netflix and various Michael Moore films – but in trying to open my eyes to different subjects, I’ve decided to watch a ton of documentaries – and note how I feel about each – this post contains two documentary reviews. The documentaries I am going to cover in this post are all new to me – ones I’ve never seen before this day. The documentaries to be covered are: We Are Legion: The Story of the Hacktivists (2012); Blackfish (2013).

 

First up is We Are Legion: The Story of the Hacktivists (2012), by Brian Knappenberger, focusing, of course, on the Anonymous hackers. When I say that it focuses, in truth it’s about the origin of the group, but also the origin of their cause. In many ways trying to make us believe in the power of these people, and to view them as more than just pranksters – which some might call them. The focus itself is extremely interesting and topical. I found it really interesting, and I found that there was a lot I did not know. It was a nice guide from it being on 4chan to it being truly a global Internet power. I found it thorough and educational. The culture behind all of it was amazing for me to see in this documentary, and the way Knappenberger handled it really satisfied me. I rate it at 7.7 out of 10.

 

Next up we have Blackfish (2013), by Gabriela Cowperthwaite, focusing on killer whales. It has been highly discussed I’ve found, but this was the first time I got to see it. After encountering what can only be described as a scary introduction, the documentary starts focusing on the trainers and how stunning these animals are. And then we get thrown right back into the horror. Some of these horrific videos, pictures, and stories are sure to stay with you – that’s for sure. The horror comes in waves, and you are sure to be hit. As you encounter Tilikum the plot thickens, one might say. I definitely loved how this documentary was handled, and its impact on me was instrumental in forming my rating: 8.7 out of 10.0.

 

This was a nice change of scenery for me.

 

– I’m Jeffrey Rex.

REVIEW: Captain America: The Winter Soldier (2014)

Marvel Studios poster

The following is a review of Captain America: The Winter Soldier.

The Winter Soldier was something very special. Not only did it have some of the best mid- and post-credits scenes in the second phase of the Marvel Cinematic Universe, it might also be the most groundbreaking Marvel Studios-film since Marvel’s The Avengers. It gave us new friends, reunited old ones, and changed the entire look of the Marvel Cinematic Universe.  (more…)