Thursday, February 28, 2008

Bear With Me

I've had to drive into Manhattan twice every day this week, while at the same time installing a webcam on my computer. Hopefully, as soon as this week is over, I'll be able to post video reviews of movies and whatever else enters my mind (which can be a scary place).


Friday, February 22, 2008

Very Long Oscar Predictions

EDIT (2/25 12:25AM) So it looks like I went 16 correct and 8 wrong for 67%...not too shabby.....I think The Bourne Ultimatum wins and especially The Golden Compass threw me the most that the writers strike is over...there will be nothing like experiencing a bloated 3+ hour self celebration of narcissism, sadly minus Debbie Allen dance numbers. Unlike many other bloggers, I will not be live blogging the event, since my computer is nowhere near a tv, and I will be too glued to the set to want to write anything about it. I'm also quite interested in the Spirit Awards the day before, as I had the honor of voting for them this year and want to see if my choices turn out to be the winners. But this post is about the let's see what we have.....

Best Actor:

Tommy Lee Jones and Viggo Mortensen should be happy with their nominations. Johnny Depp might win in a split vote scenario. George Clooney has the clout, but I believe DANIEL DAY-LEWIS gave the leading performance of the year and should easily walk away with the prize.

Best Supporting Actor:

Phillip Seymour Hoffman and Tom Wilkinson should be happy with their nominations. Casey Affleck has an extremely outside shot. Hal Holbrook has a decent chance if the Academy goes the 'honoring the body of work' route. However, they didn't do that for Laurel Bacall and they won't do it here. JAVIER BARDEM all the way.

Best Actress:

Cate Blanchett? Not a chance. Laura Linney will win one of these days, but this is not her year. Ellen Page has a decent shot at winning a split vote. Then it becomes hard. Either Marion Cotillard or Julie Christie has a great chance at winning. It's become quite a toss-up...but I think JULIE CHRISTIE will win. Just a hunch and I can easily be wrong.

Best Supporting Actress:

The hardest category of the lot. Atonement girl is probably the only one that can be safely discounted. Ruby Dee may have been honored by SAG, but I don't see the academy going that route. I didn't find her performance all that memorable. Tilda Swinton has a chance, but I'm just not feeling it for her, maybe another year. Cate Blanchett has a great chance too...but she also won recently and I just get a feeling that most won't vote for what amounts to a trick performance, even if it was good. That leaves AMY RYAN, who really did go all out in her performance and should squeak by the others.

Best Animated Film:

Surf's Up! Huh? Perspolis stands a decent chance since it was denied a Foreign Language nom...but RATATOUILLE can't be beat here. It's also French and most academy members won't stop hearing it from their kids if they don't give it the win.

Art Direction:

American Gangster and The Golden Compass....enjoy your nominations. There Will Be Blood might win as Jack Fisk is quite respected. Atonement possibly too, but save for a few set's just your pretty English countryside again. SWEENEY TODD created a older London that perfectly fit in with the sensibility of the film. This might be the category to honor it in...give Tim Burton some love.


Everyone talk about Roger Deakins splitting the vote. Who's really going to vote for Jesse James when his other film is the likely Best Picture winner? Atonement is a no. The Diving Bell and the Butterfly could take it as one of those 'let's honor it here' type of wins. No Country for Old Men should take the top prizes so THERE WILL BE BLOOD will most likely be honored here.

Costume Design:

Everyone talks about the green dress in Atonement. I can't remember it. Sweeney Todd and La Vie en Rose I remember basically for suits, I doubt the academy will honor that. Across the Universe? I don't really remember costumes per se. Elizabeth 2 has your average regal queenly dresses, I think the well has run dry there. Plus, who want to honor Elizabeth 2. ATONEMENT will win for this green dress thingy.

Best Director:

Jason Reitman should be happy with his nomination. I doubt the George Clooney love will transmit to Tony Gilroy. This might be the chance to honor Diving Bell and give it to Julian Schnabel...but I don't see it. Paul Thomas Anderson will make more movies, and there are those who did not like There's Blood!. JOEL AND ETHAN COEN will walk away with the prize. People may not like the ending....but I was on the edge of my seat during the film.


There's not giving it to Michael Moore again...not with Iraq in the mix. That knock out War/Dance since that's Africa and Taxi to the Dark Side as that's Afghanistan. Operation Homecoming is a recitation of letters so NO END IN SIGHT will take the prize and we'll get to hear a 45 second diatribe against our Iraq involvement.

Short Documentary:

Salim Baba was too slight. La Corona was amusing but ultimately pointless. Sari's Mother was a bit confusing and didn't have too much emotional heft. FREEHELD grabs you by the throat and squeezes out tears until it's over. It will take the prize and we'll get 45 seconds about equal rights for gay/lesbian partners.


Into the Wild? Nope....not enough nominations to give it an Oscar. Diving Bell and Bourne Ultimatum have to sit back to another No Country and There's Blood! showdown. NO COUNTRY FOR OLD MEN should take it as people want to see what will happen since Roderick Jaynes doesn't really exist.

Foreign Language:

I've never heard of 4 of these films and have only seen THE COUNTERFEITERS. SO it wins because I say so.


Like Norbit will really win. Here's the chance to give LA VIE EN ROSE it's Oscar. Pirates 3 has too much CGI to give it a makeup award.

Music Score:

3:10 to Yuma and The Kite Runner no one really cares about. I don't remember the music from Michael Clayton or Ratatouille. But I do remember the typewriter from ATONEMENT and the academy will also.

Music Song:

If August Rush wins, it's a sign of the apocalypse. Enchanted had nice songs...but the fact that there's 3 of them here shows that not many other films had original songs...and these weren't up to Menken's usual standards. Once is one of those films that everyone who see it seems to love (except me), but the music was great, and here's a chance to honor it in a catagory no one remembers later on. So FALLING SLOWLY take the prize.

Best Picture:

Atonement just isn't good enough. Neither is Michael Clayton. There Will Be Blood had too many detractors from the start to take the prize. It's a Juno/No Country showdown. I think enough people had the reaction that I did to Juno...that it wasn't very good...and NO COUNTRY FOR OLD MEN is 2007's best picture. Hopefully the Paul Haggis "gotcha!" award isn't given out again.

Animated Short:

Tough call. A film might be better than others, but I find the short catagories better suited to voting your gut instinct. I Met The Walrus was too short and pointless. My Love and Madame Tulti-Pulti had fanatstic animation but were also boring as paint drying in hell. Meme Less Pigeons Vont au Paradis is cute but a one-note joke. PETER AND THE WOLF was a hilarious telling of the story and should be the winner.

Live Action Short:

Il Supplente was too strange. The Tonto Woman has been done before. Tanghi Argentini was cute and could bring in some votes...but it's a one joke film. At Night is probably the most depressing 40 minutes I have ever sat through. Excellent, but it really is a tough sell. LE MOZART DES PICKPOCKETS was a cute 30 minute romp and the audience favorite when I saw it. At Night is probably the better film, but I think gut instinct tends to win out here.

Sound Editing:

Oh of those categories only the people involved know what it's about. Bourne is just a loud (albeit excellent) action film. Transformers was just loud. Ratatouille is animated. I think here THERE WILL BE BLOOD will win out over No Country, as the academy will want to give it something.

Sound Mixing:

This goes to the loudest film, so there's no need to discuss the other 4. TRANSFORMERS.

Visual Effects:

Golden Compass...please. Transformers and Pirates 3 run neck and neck here as they both were basically CGI films. I think TRANSFORMERS will take it, as Pirates 3 was considered too bloated and who doesn't love giant robots (as opposed to a giant Naomi Harris).

Adapted Screenplay:

Another No Country/Blood battle. But There's Blood! used it's book more as a template and NO COUNTRY FOR OLD MEN really adapted it's book quite faithfully and into the best picture of the year.

Original Screenplay:

JUNO.....this way everyone can stop talking about it. I hated the screenplay...but it's another one of those 'give it something' awards.

And that's it........let's see Monday Morning how I did...enjoy the show!

Thursday, February 21, 2008

International Idiocy--Pissing Away Your Freedom Edition

Story Here

Denied the charges? Granted there's no database for this type of offense set up, so I imagine he was caught in the act....hard to deny that. And another incident featuring a guy in a kilt? I may not be completely knowledgeable when it comes to certain countries, but I've never heard of any animosity between Great Britain and Latvia. Or of anyone who would even care about that.


I recently cleaned up files that were littered around the computer and discovered numerous slips of paper with various websites written on them. One slip I recognized from when I was a substitute teacher back in the early aughts. I transcribed the websites into a notebook then started to look at them afresh. One of these websites is SIXTEENPAGES.NET For the life of me, I can't make heads or tails of this website, or why I would ever have written it down. It appears to be some sort of bizarre game; though I can't figure out the rules or the objective. If anyone has some serious time to waste, take a look and let me know what you think.

Monday, February 18, 2008


I went into NYC yesterday to go see the Documentary Shorts up for the Oscar this year. After getting my ticket, I went back to Broadway to waste some time. As I was walking there, a series of cars with people screaming and waving flags were coming down 50th Street. As I got closer to Times Square it became apparent that this was a Kosovo freedom rally, celebrating the recent declaration of independence from Serbia. The police had barricades set up from 42nd to 44th street for onlookers. I was quite surprised at the number of people who seemed to have ties to Kosovo, but the fun everyone was having was infectious. The stream of cars lasted for well over an hour. Luckily I had my camera with me....the pictures aren't great....but here they are....

kosovo rally
kosovo rally
kosovo rally
kosovo rally
kosovo rally
kosovo rally
kosovo rally
kosovo rally
kosovo rally
kosovo rally

Thursday, February 14, 2008

The Good, the Bad and the Ugly of: Jumper


The Good:

1. Jamie Bell. Ok....Jumper is not a great movie by any means. Nor is it a long one....only 83 minutes. However, whenever Jamie Bell was on screen, it was a little bit easier to take. He gives the film a shot of energy that is sorely missed whenever he is off screen.

2. Hayden Christensen's Looks. I'm only human. He does doff his shirt a few times in the movie, I'm all for that...keep me watching.

3. Lack of moral issues. Christensen's character is a bit of a bastard. Early on, we discover he earns his money by robbing banks, yet nothing is made of this fact in a moral way. In fact, he never uses his powers for "good", even when shown an opportunity. Good for the screenwriters. Not everyone with superpowers has to be a do-gooder.

The Bad:

1. Hayden Christensen's acting. I thought he was wooden in the Star Wars films because that was how Lucas directed him. Perhaps I was wrong. He tackles this role with too much intensity which only makes him seem stiffer.

2. She-Who-I-Will-Not-Name. She plays his mother in the film. Total screen time is only about 3 minutes (which is a good thing). Someday I'll go into why I'm against her.

3. The Plot Issues. There are a number of plot issues that affect the credibility of the film. I'll mention two. One--at the beginning of the film, Christensen's character is 13 and supposedly learns about his ability for the first time. Later, it is established he actually used his ability for the first time when he was only 5 years old. If I developed the ability to teleport at age 5, I think I'd remember that. I have memories from when I was five. Two--just at the moment when it look like the bad guys have been shaken off....suddenly the bad guys just happen to have a machine that will allow them to continue. How convienent.

The Ugly:

1. Sam Jackson's Hair:


What the hell is that? Why does he even have it? There is a tretise to be found somewhere in the correlation between a movies quality and the villian's hairstyle. There is absolutely no reason to have a discolored Chia Pet as hair. It's just distracting.

Verdict: Rent it.

Keyword Search

Being a young blog, most keyword searches leading here have tended toward the benign and obvious. However, I was just checking my StatCounter account (or is SiteMeter better to use?) and someone accessed this blog using:

Julius Wechter religion

Who in the world is Julius Wechter? And what religion does he have going for him? I'm at a loss on how that string led here.

Valentine's Day

For all those of you celebrating today with somebody special:


May you have a wonderful day.

For all those like me who have nobody to celebrate today with:


Go one of these and enjoy!


After's over in 24 hours.

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Burning Question

Answer in the comments.........

Which is the better theme song:

"The Electric Company"


"The Great Space Coaster"


Tuesday, February 12, 2008

And to all a good night.....

I don't want to leave everyone for the night on the previous sour I present puppies! Who doesn't love pictures of puppies? Awww........

sleeping puppies

Ugh just hit me that Valentine's Day is in 2 days. Another one I get to celebrate single and alone....keeping alive the streak that goes back to the year I was born.

Sigh....maybe someday.....

Monday, February 11, 2008

Oh B.O. this week

Yes.....I know I haven't posted the Box Office grosses the past few weeks. It's actually a decision I made. January through April are usually a very fallow time for the movies, and frankly the less I have to write about Fool's Gold, Meet the Spartans and Hannah Montana, the saner I'll be for when the good stuff starts again and I do re-start the grosses post.

But hey, if you want to go see Hannah Montana, I'm not going to stop you.

Show me that smile again.......

I had kind of a crappy weekend heading into the first half of today. I'll spare the details since no one likes a Mr. Weepy. Things are starting to look up though. So I'll simply post a nice little picture.

nice day

Sunday, February 10, 2008

Plinko Schminko

Looking back at my post of the Tic Tac Dough dragon a few days ago got my mind going on all the game shows I used to watch growing up. Nothing would make me happier than for daytime TV to return to a game show filled schedule. Joker's Wild, Card Sharks, Blockbusters, Hot Potato, Deal of the Century, Tic Tac Dough, Match Game....the list goes on. I could easily spend 24 hours straight watching old episodes of these shows. At least The Price is Right is still on.

I kind of like Drew Carey as the new host. He's still a little green when it comes to hosting: he doesn't explain the rules of the games that well and doesn't have quite the level of contestant rapport that Barker had, but I think he'll get there. I do miss some of the games though. Penny Ante was my favoirte, where the contestant had to guess the right price for an item and pushed the button lighting up a row of pennies with the sound "BBBBBBRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRUP!" to reveal a yes or no answer. Hurdles was also a favorite, probably why I became a hurdler in high school.

However, there is one game on TPIR that I have never been a fan of, and have still never understood it's appeal.


I truly fail to get Plinko. When a contestant is shown a car as a prize, I fully expect them to jump and whoop around the stage. However, whenever Plinko is announced, the contestant goes even crazier, as if a genie has granted them as many wishes and he/she can wish.

Plinko is one of the few games on TPIR that doesn't require some type of skill, it's purely a luck based game. The chip can be placed anywhere on the board and has a chance to go anywhere, like an old pachinko game. First, the contestant has to win Plinko chips, otherwise they only get 1 chip, so the possibility immediately exists to earn much less than $50000 if the contestant can't price. I've seen people miss on 2 or 3 chips and therefore start off being able to earn much less. I've seen people drop 3 or 4 chips into the $0 slot, walking away with almost nothing. In fact, most of the Plinko games I watch end up with the contestant winning $5000 or less; which is no great shake. According to Wikipedia, the most anyone has won on the $50000 Plinko board (replacing the $25000 board in 1998) is $30100. Good for them, so they earned 60% of the maximum total, not the greatest percentage. I just don't like the idea of a game where it's possible for the contestant to get all the Plinko chips and still be able to walk away with $0. Even in Punch-A-Bunch, the worst a contestant can do is $50.

I guess the thought of a possible $50000 is enough to make people spazz out. I'd rather play Hole in One-Or Two!

(Totally unrelated thought: How awesome would it be to have a TPIR Game Show Host Guest Host week? If Drew Carey ever goes on vacation, have old hosts like Monty Hall, Tom Kennedy, Wink Martindale, Jim Perry and Richard Dawson come in to each do a show. That I wouldn't miss.)

Friday, February 8, 2008

Blog Title Explanation (more exciting than post heading)

So I imagine the burning question on everyone's mind is.....What does 'I Deny You the Nidus!' even mean? Well, if you already know the answer to that question then you are my best friend forever. If not, this post will provide the answer.

Back in the early 1980's, Nickelodeon was a fledging television network that I watched faithfully. Being a new network, they did not have a lot of original programming so instead they imported a number of shows from other countries. Many of these shows (primarily from England and New Zealand) had a sci-fi twist to them and were presented under the banner "The Third Eye". About 4 shows comprised "The Third Eye", only 2 of which have stayed with me, as I made sure to watch them every time the came back on in rotation. Yes, the 4 shows were basically looped for quite some time. The first show was called "Children of the Stones", a fantastic sci-fi story about a scientist and his son who arrive in a small town to study the odd stone formations found there and get caught up in a mystery involving the town's "Happy Ones". I'll write more detail about this show on a later date.

The other show, and the one more pertinent to my blog, was "Into the Labyrinth". (presented in three pictures on top of each other, as I don't know how to do side by side pictures yet...sorry)


In this show, three young children in the English countryside are mysteriously drawn to a cave, in which lives an imprisoned wizard, Rothgo. Rothgo is dying as he has lost his power source, known as the Nidus. He asks the three children to help him find it. The Nidus is lost somewhere in time, so once the three kids agree to help, they are sent back in time to start their search for the Nidus. Each episode takes place in a different "time period", which, given the budgtary limitations of the show, all took place in the same set of caves, but with different window dressings, meant to invoke the time period. (Easier to swallow when I was only 10 watching this.) The Nidus is disguised as some object in each time period and only by looking at that object's reflection will the fact that it is the Nidus be revealed.

Now, there is also a nemesis. A witch, Belor, pictured in my header, is also after the Nidus, so she can control its power for herself. In each time period, she is able to disguise herself as a different charatcer. Now, here is where my title comes in. At the end of each episode, the children discover which object is the Nidus. At that point, Belor transforms from her disguise into her real form, points at the object and yells: "I deny you the Nidus!" This causes the Nidus to be thrown through time into a different era. The kids then follow to that next time period and their adventures start anew. Until the last episode, when you can pretty much guess what will happen.

There were three seasons of "Into the Labyrinth." Season 2 follows the same pattern. Rothgo has again lost the Nidus, and the kids have to search for it, with Belor trying to stop them; and yelling "I deny you the Nidus!" until the final episode, natch. In season 3, only the oldest of the children returns, finds a new wizard he has to help with some other object......whatever, Season 3 was bad.

When deciding the title of my blog, I first came up with a number of different variations on my name, then decided that was dumb, as a lot of people have already done that and better than I could do. So one day I was going through my movie collection, looking for something or other to watch (I really need to organize it), when I came upon the DVD's of the show. Immediately, I knew that I'd use "I Deny You the Nidus" as the title. It's a phrase I like and remembered, it reminds me of growing up and the obscene amount of TV I watched, and it wasn't some corny play on my last name Flink (not an easy name to do workplay with).

Thus was "I Deny You the Nidus!" born.

The DVD's I have of the show are bootleg versions I bought from Ebay, copied from the English DVD release. I believe the series is still sold on DVD in England, for those who have region-free players. Or I'm sure Ebay must still have them. I would recommend buying the series and also "Children of the Stones". They might skew a little young, but they are well done shows and a nice throwback to classic sci-fi.

If anyone has heard of or seen these series, let me know. I don't want to be the only soul who enjoys them.

P.S. Oh yes, add "The Tomorrow People" to that list. But that's another post.

International Idiocy: Get Me to the Cemetery on Time Edition

Dateline: London

I love how the article states that "some people got very angry and had to be restrained by other mourners." Like the horses made some sort of a collective decision beforehand to disrupt everything. I can just envision these people suing the horses later on for inflicting emotional distress.

EDIT: 11:04pm Wow, do I sound bitter here. What got into me? I guess it's that I could understand being upset, but having to be restrained? If that happened to me, I'm not sure if anyone could really be blamed, horses do spook, but who would these people have gone after? The horses?

Wednesday, February 6, 2008

Currently feeling.....

tic tac dough

Play Me

Curtain up.....light the lights.....

It would appear that perhaps all those years spent practicing my Oscar acceptance speech is starting to pay off. Or at least I might be a step closer to fulfilling my dream of slapping She-Who-Will-Not-Be-Named. I have made my first appearance on another blog!

Over at PUNTABULOUS, a few pictures I took over the weekend have been put up. The witty and talented Craig, who writes Puntabulous, posted a recipe last week of a Buffalo Chicken Dip for use during the Super Bowl. Anyone who made it was asked to send in pictures. I brushed aside my normal reticence, stepped out of my comfort zone, and snapped some pics of myself making the recipe (and for some reason a lot of different T-Shirts).

Craig obviously has some magic in him, as he made me look and sound better than I would normally consider myself. So head on over to check out the pics and the blog. Then keep going back every day!

Monday, February 4, 2008


Midnight Madness

Come see how good a night can be
Are you ready for a brand new game?
(a brand new game)
Come take a chance and play with me
And you're never gonna be the same

When Midnight MadnessStarts to get to you
Doesn't matter what you say
Doesn't matter what you do.
You gotta play.

Just when you think you've had your fun
And you're ready to say goodnight
(don't say goodnight)
You'll find the fun has just begun
'Cause the game's gonna last all night.

Just when you think you've had your fun
And you're ready to say goodnight
(don't say goodnight)
You'll find the fun has just begun
'Cause the game's gonna last all night.

When Midnight MadnessStarts to get to you
Doesn't matter what you say
Doesn't matter what you do.

Song by: David and Julius Wechter

Catching up with the movies---

I was hoping to do some Good, Bad and Ugly's for these films.....but the aforementioned issues got in the way. So I'll just encapsulate:

Away From Her: Quite a lovely touching film. Julie Christie deserves the Oscar for this one. A nice, quiet, flowing performance. No big scenes, just a solid job from beginning to end. The movie even ended on a slight up note, which was pleasant.

Eating Out 2: Sloopy Seconds: Ok, I laughed at some stuff, but overall this was pretty bad. Yes, the actors were pretty to look at, but that is why the internet was invented. Watching a movie, I want to watch a movie, with characters and story.

Rambo: He blows shit up! It was comforting to see gratuitous 80's violence on the screen again. The story and characters were massively simplistic, but just enough to keep me going. Who doesn't love watching someone get an arrow through the face, then get blown up by a land mine?

Norbit: Solely watched because of the Oscar nomination for Makeup. I've seen a glimpse of hell.

Atonement: Not as good as I hoped. The ending "twist" did not work in the context of the film; it left a rather bland feeling behind. As the movie ends up being predicated on the twist, it deadens the movie a little.

2001 Maniacs: A little too goofy for it's own good, at least the gore effects were done well. Robert Englund was a hoot.

Surf's Up: It's ok, but entirely predictable. How this beat out The Simpsons Movie for the Best Animated Film nomination, I'll never know.

Suck it Verizon! too life.....


Well, my phone and internet went down for the better part of a week. Verizon was no help, telling me to stay at home for 9 hours so I can be there for a repairman, only to tell me after 9 1/2 hours that it was a cable problem and nobody was going to come after all. Fun fun. Then it goes down again and they finally send a repairman, at 8:00am on Saturday morning. At least everything is fixed....just in time for my mother to develop a slight medical problem. I'm not going to bother with the specifics; I don't want to depress everyone, plus it seems that it's easily treatable and shouldn't be a factor long-term wise. So the past two weeks have not been oodles of fun.

Onwards and upwards to better things...I hope