YOMYOMF Mixtape: Listen: Lesson: Listen


Vol. III of the series, and the final selection for the ’09, comes with a few deeply personal dedications:
Ms. Camellarri, Ms. Moran, Sr. Carmen Raphael, Mrs. Estrada, Mr. Farkas, Mr. Llewellyn, Mr. Norton, Fr. Kidney, Ms. McFaul, Ms. Collette, Ms. Combs, Dr. James, Prof. Thompson, Prof. Grimes, Prof. Deppa, Prof. Hayes, Dean Agbayani and to my two best teachers in the classroom without walls, mom and dad: Thank you all. I learned.

Happy 2010 to you.

To Sir With Love – Lulu

Wake Up Everybody – Harold Melvin and The Blue Notes

Second Acts: K-Town Clubbin’ With Mickey Rourke

“There are no second acts in American lives”
–F. Scott Fitzgerald

Usually when I’ve written about my encounters with Hollywood celebrities, I’ve tended to keep their identities anonymous. But this time I’m not going to do that. This blog will be about the brief moments I spent in the company of Mr. Mickey Rourke. Writing about Iron Man 2 (Rourke plays one of the baddies) and reading Justin’s recent blog about the late Pat Morita, reminded me about Mr. Rourke and I thought this story might be appropriate to serve as my final entry of 2009.

Top Ten Movies Of 2009 – The Porn Versions

Forget Tiger Woods or Arnold Palmer. The greatest “Titleist” ever is my friend Robert Consing. Here are his titles for the best movies of 2009:

1. The Squirt Locker
2. District 69
3. Did You Hear About The Organs?
4. Watch Men
5. Funny Peephole
6. In Gloria’s Bastard
7. The Lovely Bone
8. Me In Orson Welles
9. Schtup In The Air (Canadian title: Mile High Club)
10. Oraline

And honorable mentions go to “The Hind Side,” “Cloudy With A Chance Of My Balls,” and “Public Enema.”

I present the list as Robert gave it to me. But if I might quibble: I’d put “Cloudy With A Chance Of My Balls” at number 3, “The Hind Side” at number 7, and move “Me In Orson Welles” and “In Gloria’s Bastard” to the Honorable Mentions. Again, though, just a quibble.

Best Films of the ’00s

The ’00s…the Zeroes… The Naughts… Whatever we call this first decade of the 21st Century, I have to say it was  a great decade for movies. And yes, the movie universe is topsy turvy now, with mid-range budgeted films moved out to usher in $200 million comic book tentpoles and the Indie Film era is in great tumult, we can still reflect on the great films that brought back spectacle, as well as authentic storytelling that was strengthened by rising auteurs. In addition, in our globalized world, with the advent to DVD and yes, piracy, the audience became more empowered, in my opinion. At the end of the decade, the traditional space of the cinema may be vanquished as other alternatives have sprung up with home theater systems, as well as alternative online distribution models across various platforms.

But enough of my rant. I wanted to start this special Around the Horn by celebrating the best films of the Naughts. Now, it is very difficult to actually rank these personal picks so I am just listing them in random order. The criteria is that I didn’t just use my right brain, and by no means, do I want this entry to be all stodgy. On the contrary, these are personal picks that I reacted to in such an emotional level that I tend to revisit these films over and over again. They’ve joined my film viewing oeuvre. I’m going to highlight some titles with some cool clips that I hope strengthen my choice. I am sure many of our readers have seen these films, but if you did not, get them on your Netflix queue!

Far From Heaven (2002) – An homage to Douglas Sirk melodramas of the 1950s, Todd Haynes’ masterful look into the underbelly of White American artifice. The clandestine bond formed by perfect housewife Julianne Moore and black gardener Dennis Haysbert is touching as real emotions slowly seep out from the manicured simulacrum of White suburbia.

Half Nelson (2006) – This movie could’ve gone the cheesy way of the white savior, but instead, first-time filmmakers Ryan Fleck and Anna Boden create an authentic film about a cracked out teacher (Ryan Gosling in a groundbreaking performance) and the relationship he has with a troubled black youth named Drey (Shareeka Epps). It’s kind of like The Wire, Season 4.

The Lord of the Rings Trilogy (2001 – 2003) – Most realized and most fantastical film trilogy ever. Even beats the original Star Wars trilogy, which is muddied by Ewoks in the third chapter.

The Dark Knight (2008) – Best comic book film adaptation ever. Christopher Nolan’s vision is unprecedented and everyone was on fire in this film, especially the late Heath Ledger but also Aaron Eckhart, who I think gets short shrift for his morally tortured and manipulated role as Harvey Dent.

Megan Fox: An Asian American Blogger’s Best Friend?

If you’re reading this blog for the very first time, there’s a pretty good chance you googled “Megan Fox” and that’s what led you to our site. How do I know this? Because according to our analytics, this piece I wrote about Ms. Fox back in August is YOMYOMF’s single most read blog. And not by a little. It’s been read almost 4 times as much as our second most popular blog, my fellow Offender Roger’s take on the upcoming Red Dawn remake.

Now you would think this is an accomplishment I’d be proud of, but the opposite is true. In fact, I’m asking everyone reading this now to not only click on the link to Roger’s blog, but ask at least five friends to do so as well. And in case you missed it in my previous paragraph, here is that link to his piece again. I would love it if his post got a bunch of hits and took over the title as our most read. Why? Because the success of the Megan Fox blog really has nothing to do with me or this site and it must be stopped. That blog must be forgotten and buried and not allowed to see the light of day anymore.

’80s Movie/Fashion Mashup

Don’t get the skirt wet! With Phil’s penchant for inspired ’80s gifts, here’s a fashion mashup that celebrates the Joe Dante classic Gremlins.

Frack, I feel old that this stuff has a nostalgia, post-modern revisit. It was bad in the ’90s, when stuff from the ’70s was cool again. But, nostalgia nowadays is becoming more geekier. How else would we get stuff like the Taun Taun sleeping bag?

Anyway, Crotch-Gizmo is sold at Alex and Chloe, for the “hey what recession?” price of $2100! Maybe some Google exec can buy this for his girlfriend….

If You’re Still Looking For The Perfect Holiday Gift For Me…

Automotive/movie buff Gary Weaver has modified a 1981 Delorean DMC-12 to look exactly like the Delorean/time machine from Back To The Future and he’s selling it on ebay (see listing here).

This car is supposed to be the closest in detail to the original in the film. It even has the “OUTATIME” license plate with 1986 registration plates, programmable time circuits and exterior flux band lighting. You can purchase this for me for only $89,000. As I write this, the ebay bidding is up to only $59,300 so there’s a good chance you may even have enough left over to throw in insurance, some plutonium for me to power this sucker and/or do the hover-craft conversion.

An Open Letter To Jon Favreau Regarding ‘Iron Man 2’

Dear Mr. Favreau:

I recently saw the trailer for the upcoming Iron Man 2 and I have to say that it looks very impressive. I wasn’t really a big comic book fan growing up and didn’t know too much about Iron Man, but you did a great job directing the first film and I’m looking forward to what you have in store for the sequel.

But there is one thing I was disappointed you didn’t include in the first movie and from what I’ve heard from the grapevine, you have no plans to include this in the second one either. If this is indeed the case, I am writing to ask you to reconsider. Most people know that the Iron Man suit has a lot of cool powers, but there’s a special gadget the suit possesses that begs to be included in the sequel. And what is this you may be asking? Two words: roller skates.

Why Is It Always The Brothas Who Are The Freaks?

This latest piece of news about Canadian inventor Le Trung isn’t as bad as this or this, but come on…why does it always have to be the Asian guys who are the freaks?!

According to the article, Trung has invented a female robot he named Aiko (Japanese for “love child”). Aiko sounds pretty amazing. She It can speak 13,000 sentences in both English and Japanese, has a highly-developed artificial intelligence and is very human-like. Clearly, Trung is a very smart guy and his invention has a lot of potential. But then he has to go and ruin it by treating her like…well, just read this excerpt from the article:

The Kids Are Alright

As the music industry’s woes and general malaise — more than a bit of it, self-induced by decades of its own overstuffed arrogance and failure to genuinely diversify — continue, the outsider, anti-corporate spirit of DIY, not only lives on but, thrives in the form of some self-described musicians and singers, a good number of whom, for various reasons, likely wouldn’t have made it beyond the piles of demos in any label office.

Specifically, the indie spirit subsists via decidedly lo-fi, low tech and low budget (not exceeding more than a few chai boba lattes, which likely fueled the sessions) self-made music videos. For the most part, no more than web-camed, individual karaoke sessions shot in a bedroom, these recorded performances are broadcast by scores of un-shy singers with hi-speed connections and high-level social network savvy. This is MTV (when MTV actually played music videos) for a generation weaned on “American Idol” and “America’s Got Talent” and for whom, there lies a tacit if not, actually verbalized dream to be discovered somewhere, somehow by someone a la their ‘scene’s’ Patron Saint, Arnel Pineda who famously parlayed YouTubed covers into a living-the- dream career as the new lead singer of Journey.

Most are barely listenable, far from emo-riffic — some even terrible — and how this all translates to live performances before real audiences still remains to be seen as well as heard but, a good number, have the pipes, the skills and most importantly, the tone and soul. This has also led to more than a few cool partnerships between video performers like the one below between Melissa Polinar, a Pinay singer/songwriter from Dallas and Jennifer Chung, a KA similar hyphenate from Irvine, who likely came to know each other online via their respective videos. Here they are dueting on Polinar’s original “Brave Face.”

TOKYO CLUTTER

[vimeo]http://www.vimeo.com/8445519[/vimeo]

A wise man I know told me something about clutter.  ”If you don’t use something more than once a year,it serves no purpose in your life but to clutter it”  Agreed!

Dec.26th 2009/11:33pm: Going through the clutter of my office room I discovered years of this and that’s.  Most not worth mentioning, but some precious memories rediscovered.  Yes, most haven’t been used for more than a year but they do hold a dear place in my life.  *For example I found my first watch, doesn’t work, and I won’t ever fix it, but where that watch I have traveled has some value.  Discard or Keep?  I discard.  *Condoms from the San Diego Int. Film festival.  Not used in over a year.  lol. I Discard!  Says a lot about my sex life. LOL! *A CD player.  I never used it because I always thought I’d break it.  Now it’s old and really big.  Should’ve used it when it was socially exceptable to carry that thing around.  I Discard!  *A pink-Tshirt that says I’m a member of the Hollywood Gay Mafia.  HA!  I like pink shirts but I’ll let this one go.   *A gag reel dvd  from the tokyo drift days…