Friday, February 18, 2011

Oscar Contest

It's time for the 3rd Annual G Dazzle Oscar Contest! Submit your predictions for the 2011 Academy Awards to win some totally (or moderately) awesome prizes and swag!

To win, simply submit your answers in the comments field below for EVERY category - The winner has the most correct picks out of all 24 categories.

REMEMBER: This isn't who you think should win - it's who you think will win. You don't even need to see the movies. There's no accounting for taste with the Academy!

Make sure you post under a specific name (no anonymous) so I can contact you if you win.

You can copy and paste the list below or type in your guess for each category.

Answers are due by NOON, Sunday, February 27. The awards ceremony begins at 5 p.m. that day.

Listen to The G Dazzle Theme Hour on at 5 p.m. PST for a round up of Oscar scores, songs and the year's should-have-beens.

Visit the official Academy website for more information. They also have a list of the nominees and a printable checklist.

Best Picture -

Actor in a Leading Role -

Actor in a Supporting Role -

Actress in a Leading Role -

Actress in a Supporting Role -

Animated Feature Film -

Art Direction -

Cinematography -

Costume Design -

Directing -

Documentary Feature -

Documentary Short -

Film Editing -

Foreign Language Film -

Makeup -

Music (Original Score) -

Music (Original Song) -

Short Film (Animated) -

Short Film (Live Action) -

Sound Editing -

Sound Mixing -

Visual Effects -

Writing (Adapted Screenplay) -

Writing (Original Screenplay) - 

Thursday, February 10, 2011

As promised - Nic Cage Detritus

This up-do gets 10/10 Nics

More HSU Landscaping Annoyances

I took these last August. Not egregious, but I don't understand why they replaced old, self-sustaining trees with needy grass. And overwater it. Excess water was running from these median sprinklers onto the road at least a dozen foggy, humid days last summer.

Ugly HSU Landscaping

HSU's new residence halls are lovely - if you're into Midwest business-park aesthetics. But why stop at mediocre architecture when you can install one of the ugliest, most uninspired landscaping designs ever seen?

Read last semester's Lumberjack article about faculty member Pete Haggard's disgruntlement.

I'll be looking further into this project. In the meantime let me vent about the aesthetics.

Though I have to look at "it" every day on my way to school, please note - the HSU groundskeeping staff does not decide the landscaping design process, so they are even more unfairly burdened with maintaining this monstrosity.

[These are low quality phone pics, but the image quality probably glosses over the landscaper's faults - like beer goggles. Click on them for larger views.]

Oh nice. Gravel is one of least favorite ground coverings, especially paired with asphalt (my least favorite). Gravel is also uncontainable and the most skateboard-disagreeable substance on the planet. Sprinklers in these planters ran for most of the month of November.

Dead twigs. That's what I see. When every tree you plant is the same winter deciduous species (maybe the hawthorns the Lumberjack article spoke of? I thought they were sycamores when first planted), 5 months out of the year are a barren tundra.

"These trees might escape if we don't put them in cages."
Also, what's up with HSU planning putting obstacles in every nice, wide sidewalk they develop? I'll take trees over parking meters (B Street is a joke), but the goal should be to make it easier to walk to school. 
And that lawn is yellowing and sickly. Not sure if it's over/under-watered/fertilizered - but if you must put in lawn, don't plant grass that doesn't grow (duh).

The view accompanying your walk along the upcoming Harpst St. Parking Emporium.
Look for a surprise at :15!!!! [Sorry for the motion-sick inducing camera, but you get the point]

...Culminating in this truly inspired planter box. These wilting, pathetically arranged flowers are only outdone by the garish sprinkler heads. What beauty mine eyes behold! 

Let's take a quick glance at some other parts of HSU's campus - similarly manicured, but with a less totalitarian approach.

The steps leading up to Bret Harte House. Variety! Elevation! Color! Shapes! Texture! 

 A tiny planter in front of Bret Harte House. The plants are the ground cover. Sword ferns! I'm guessing that there are more species in this 4x6 foot space than the 6-acre housing project.

One of my favorite pathways at the university - between the library and Telonicher House. Yeah, the parking lot's ugly. And I'm generally not for lawns, but look at those maples and the narrowing perspective. Walking past that white rhododendron is like running a gauntlet of sensual aroma. 

Get a clue, HSU!

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

My Year of Nic Cage UPDATE

School started and now my leisure time is slipping away faster than this bottle of wine. I'm falling behind on My Year Of Nic, but I've managed to squeeze in two Nic Flicks.

'Crazy Eyes' Leto.

Lord Of War - An implausibly entertaining "biopic." LOW follows the "Blow" model of stuffing a trillion stories into one narrative. Is he a loving father, caring brother and devoted husband? Or is he a genocidal sociopath? Don't wonder. LOW is all about pretty African landscapes, Central Park skylines and badass motherf***ing weapons.

I should have hated LOW, but the only truly bothersome aspect is Jared Leto. He plays a sniveling cokehead like a sniveling cokehead (he puts "Requiem For a Dream" on his resume, obviously). But it was largely enjoyable. Ethan Hawke is great and Nic makes good use of his tough-but-distant family man.

Lord Of War
Nics - 5/10

Rumble Fish - OK, confession time. I have not seen "The Godfather." But am I qualified to write this? Of course!

My point is I'm not familiar with Coppola. Rumblefish is doggedly surreal. It enjoys playing with symbolism and a nearly experimental tone. Stewart Copeland provides a nifty soundtrack, even if it feels anachronistic. The whole film is a potpourris of distinct visual elements, but there's enough emotional charge and fine acting to make the narrative relatable.

Plus it's got an amazing cast - Matt Dillon and Mickey Rourke (both awesome), Diane Lane, Nic Cage (duh), Chris Penn, a super-young looking Larry Fishburne, Tom Waits, Dennis Hopper - RIP.

Rumble Fish - 1983 
7/10 Nics