by Mike Shea on 20 October 2007
Last night Shell and I screened "Death Proof" the Tarrantino Grindhouse flick in our reference theater (Gods, sometimes I miss Liquid Theater). I seemed to spend most of the movie wondering if I liked it or not. Stuntman Mike surely is a great character but the constant conversations between twentysomething girls in small shorts got a little tiresome. I can't help but wonder if, as they become more famous, writers and directors receive poorer and poorer feedback from trusted editors. I could have used a lot more Stuntman Mike and a lot less handjob smalltalk.
Still, for as hard a time as I give it, I spent a lot of time thinking about Death Proof today - a sign I liked a movie despite myself. It isn't Kill Bill by any means, but it is a good fun slasher flick where the knife wielding maniac wields a car instead. Good times.
Planet Terror restored a lot of my respect for Robert Rodregez for the disappointment of "Once Upon a Time in Mexico". I had such high hopes for that flick only to have them buried in subplots and extra unnecessary characters. Planet Terror is a clear zombie flick reveling in its own gore. It's disgusting and laughable and wonderful all at the same time. The story is solid, the characters are a lot of fun, and the subplot is more character background than subplot.
Both Planet Terror and Death Proof are built and then torn apart with low-budget cigarette burning film house wear and tear. Halfway through Planet Terror the entire movie loses a reel and you're forced to figure out how they went from a sex scene to a house on fire. It was also wonderful to see Michael Biehn back in an action flick.
I really liked both Grindhouse movies and I recommend if you want a fun splatterhouse movie written by a couple of guys who have both talent and a love for the splatterhouse art form.
I've been jonsing to get back in the audiophile world over the past couple of weeks. I had an idea to build a third stereo system, one built around my iPhone, in our living room. However I have neither the space nor the desire to spend a lot of time listening to music in the living room. Instead, I chose to go with something more portable - a set of Shure SE 210 earphones.
The Shures are small in-ear headphones that slip in and seal off your ear canal from outside noise. They can create very low frequencies this way and have the double advantage of good sound and noise isolation. They're very small, easy to carry, sound as good as any reasonable stereo, and sonically isolate you from your environment. They're perfect for air travel where the engine noise and the screaming babies can make you wonder if you'd be able to open the emergency exit in flight or not.
I'm not sure if the Shures count as audiophile quality headphones, but they really sound great. I have only two complaints. They aren't exactly comfortable even with the smallest set of included earbuds. The cord also doesn't fit an iPhone. Some quick hacking with a knife and a pair of needle nose pliers, however, got them to fit just fine.
It's very nice to carry a near-audiophile quality system in your pocket. Times sure have changed.
Related to this topic of music, Matt Wood wrote a great article on 43 folders about reducing your music collection. I had started doing a little of this a few weeks ago but his article motivated me to strip even further. I'm down to less than five gigs of music now - enough to fit my entire music library on my iPhone. It's a lot easier to handle your digital stuff when there is less of it to handle.