video review : 10 Cloverfield Lane

video review : 10 Cloverfield Lane

Don’t be confused by the title. This is Cloverfield 2. It just looks and sounds a lot different than its predecessor. Think Blair Witch 2 if that sequel didn’t stink to high heaven. Not to say this sci fi thriller, which traps a woman (“girl”) named Michelle in an underground bunker with a crazy survivalist named Howard, isn’t a step down for the franchise.

There are moments of tension involving Michelle’s attempts to escape her virtual prison, which Howard and a fellow inmate named Emmett insist is actually a refuge against an apocalyptic chemical fallout happening outside, but the ending, in which the truth is finally revealed, is unrealistic, silly even, compared to everything that came before it.

my rating = 3 of 5

2016

audio review : Kamikaze ( album ) … Eminem

audio review : Kamikaze ( album ) ... Eminem

When a new Eminem album gets too many negative reviews, his response is to rush out another one. It’s what he did with Recovery in response to the mediocre reception critics gave to Relapse, a personal favorite of mine, and what he does here. Revival, released barely nine months ago, was panned more than any other album of his. I don’t think it’s much worse than the two before it, but the general public; a sad amount of which are simply too stupid to classify music they don’t love/like as anything other than “trash”; apparently disagreed. Eminem first responded by releasing a Chloraseptic remix with a new verse addressing the matter. That should’ve been the end of it. Instead he drags it over to a whole new project.

I like the two skits. On the first one, Paul Rosenberg leaves Em a phone message strongly implying that he thinks the album concept is a bad idea. I don’t know whether or not he really feels that way, but I certainly do. Eminem, as renowned as he is, going after detractors who aren’t nearly on his level only tarnishes his own legacy. The best thing to do is ignore them and go on with his life. The second skit plays on that opinion with a funny reply to Paul’s message in which Em talks about reading a negative comment some “moron” posted about Revival and going to his house to fight him. These skits should come later in the set, perhaps joined as one, but they get it right. I just wish they were included on a better album.

Kamikaze, titled as it is because Eminem presumably knows he could be committing career suicide with its release, is actually worse than Revival. Not by much; none of his albums are trash to me; but damn. Where’s Dr Dre? These beats sound like Drake album rejects. Fall and Greatest are potential standouts ruined by sucky hooks. I’d add Stepping Stone to that list, but it’s just the bridge that’s sucky there. The song, for an interesting side note, also has a connection to my site in that it was my popularity as a member of the official D-12 message board that inspired me to start it. “It’s 2002,” Eminem says, “Everything was totally new.” Now it’s 2018 and, though D-12 is officially “over”, their bandleader is still at it, for better or worse.

The worst chorus is the one on Nice Guy. It’s dumb and annoying. But that’s not Skylar Grey singing. It’s another hack named Jessie Reyez. Nice Guy and Good Guy have two of the best beats though, albeit coming across as tacked-on demo tracks. Good Guy is the better of the two, but there’s only one good song; nevermind a Stan-level classic; in the lot. Venom; a theme from the movie, which makes it an odd way to end this album; is a banger, but it’s not enough. What happened to the Eminem that didn’t jump on political bandwagons; Donald Trump wisely ignores his attacks; or give a fuck if people got offended by the word “faggot”? Framed is the best song on Revival. Perhaps I should mail him a copy of Relapse to study.

Forget family relationship problems and near-death drug overdoses. Eminem’s biggest blunder, as far as this (“ex”?) fan is semi-seriously concerned, was following the pop crowd and downing his own album; one of his best albums; an album that, even with those silly accents, shits on not only everything here but everything he’s released since. He spends this whole Kamikaze project defending Revival; listen closely and you’ll notice that he never actually agrees with the people who trashed it; but backtracked on Relapse, which he apparently thought was good enough to release and even plan a part two for at the time. “I write songs for me,” he once rapped, “Fuck what you like.” Sadly that doesn’t seem to be the case anymore.

my rating = 3 of 5

2018

a dream I had about walking to a college campus and teleporting back home to get my car

I had already walked pass my old high school or at least the student parking lot, where I imagined how much easier it would have been to get to and from school if I had a car, or at least a driver’s license, when I went there. There were feelings of nostalgia, but I didn’t stay around long for fear of being arrested for trespassing or something worse. There were plenty of teenage girls there, after all, and it seems I’m finding myself more and more living in a society in which a guy even looking at a girl from afar can be deemed sexual “harassment”. Besides, my main destination was the college, apparently Wayne State University, just up the street.

It took a matter of minutes to walk there from the high school and what an inviting scene it was. It was a warm spring or fall, maybe even summer, day; the weather was gorgeous or at least unassuming enough not to cause me any problems; and there were people, mostly students, many of them sexy young women, talking and walking about. It was fairly crowded, not only because of classes but in anticipation for what seemed to be some sort of social event, like some sort of big club party, starting later that day. I wanted to be there, if only to get video of it, but figured it would go on late into the night, which meant I didn’t want to be walking home in the dark.

With that in mind; and here’s the crazy part of the dream; I walked out from the campus area to the sidewalk near the main street, which seemed like Woodward Avenue, put my stuff (bags) down and bent down into a sitting position to see if I could “conjure” my car, which was at home, by closing my eyes and concentrating hard enough. I thought I had. But when I opened my eyes, I could see I was at home in bed; I think I looked up at my ceiling fan in real life; and could simply walk outside to my car and drive back to the school, which is what I prepared to do; I remember trying to remember whether or not I took a shower; before waking up for real.

2018 ( August 25 )