Legends of Film: Stuart Gordon interview

By , September 19, 2011

Just in time for Halloween, Bill brings us an interview with director Stuart Gordon. Mr. Gordon has directed Re- Animator, From Beyond, Dagon, and Space Truckers. Mr. Gordon has seen it all while on the set. Parental discretion is advised.

Movie review: David Bowie Under Review 1976-1979 The Berlin Trilogy

By , September 12, 2011

David Bowie: Under Review 1976-1979 The Berlin Trilogy

David Bowie’s so called “Berlin Trilogy” (Low, “Heroes, and Lodger) is some of my favorite pop music ever recorded. Many critics and fans debate whether the music found on the “Berlin Trilogy” is, in fact, pop. Find out why on this volume of the Under Review series. If you are unfamiliar, Under Review gets a group of critics and scholars to examine the creation and reception of classic rock albums, or in this case a trio of albums (or maybe seven albums if you count the album before the trio, a live album, and two collaborative albums with Iggy Pop). In this period of Bowie’s career his song structures went decidedly minimalist and electronic. His lyrics became more like haiku or cut-up verse than your typical chorus-laden rock song. To help him achieve these goals he enlisted ambient music pioneer Brian Eno and drew a lot inspiration of the avant-garde German “kraut rock” scene. But I’m giving too much away. You’ll have watch the movie to get the inside story.

How do you watch this movie? You download it from Overdrive. Did you know Overdrive had video content? Yeah, they do; e.g., entire first season of Masters of Horror! (Thank me later.) For now you can only watch on Windoze but libraries (and patrons) are always putting vendors in a headlock for more ways access content. How about a browser-based player that worked in any operating system: Windows, Mac, Linux, Amiga, you name it? Let’s push for that!

The library also has the Stage double album discussed in the movie. On that record the musicality of the electronic instrumentals is more apparent. You will find some interesting interpretations of Bowie’s well known hits too. And who’s that on guitar? Why it is N-ville’s own Adrian Belew.

If you wanted to learn more the kraut rock that played such a big role in the making the “Berlin Trilogy” you can check out this BBC 4 documentary:


And the library owns these albums (to name a few):

Yeti by Amon Duul II

Grosses Wasser by Cluster

Tour de France Soundtracks by Kraftwerk

Phaedra by Tangerine Dream

Keep it cold.

~ Bryan

DVD Review: Castle

By , September 10, 2011


I heart Nathan Fillion. Really, we could just end the review there and I would have said enough. I’ve loved Nathan since he was Oh Captain My Captain on Firefly.

But…here’s the funny thing – I don’t like watching Castle live. Maybe it has to do with the fact that my mom seems to call right in the middle of the show, so I miss what’s going on.  Or, maybe it’s all the commericals selling me junk I don’t want. Either way, the show always seemed to loose me around the second commercial break. Luckily, though, the library has the first two seasons of this sneakily-likable show on DVD (and the third one is on the way).

Basic premise: Fillion (who was an English major in real life) is mystery writer Rick Castle and he is shadowing NYPD Detective Kate Beckett in order to base in next character, Nikki Heat on her. He’s charmingly boyish and she’s all business – sounds like a great match-up, right?

In addition to the show, we also get to read Castle’s actual books (Heat Wave & Naked Heat). A third book, Heat Rises, is due out in a few weeks.  I’ve only read the first one, and it wasn’t great, but it was a kinda fun tie-in to the show. No one’s said what author is behind them, but just between you and me, I think it’s Fillion living out every English major’s fantasy.

Because of my love for the Great Nate, not too long ago I decided to try Castle again. And, to my surprise, I’m really enjoying it. Being able to watch a whole episode and pause it when I need to seems to help me stay in the story line. There’s nothing life-changingly fabulous about it – the show is just good entertaining TV.

And sometimes you need a little entertainment.

Happy watching…
:) Amanda

Book review: Erasing Hell

By , September 3, 2011

Erasing Hell is a Christian book, based on Christian beliefs. It was written as a pseudo-rebuttal to Rob Bell’s book, Love Wins (which I have not read), who preaches that everyone goes to heaven no matter what. Erasing Hell’s goal is to further Christian understanding of the concept of hell, and give us a more truthful and realistic foundation of faith in this live free, die hard world. It is not the book’s intent to convert the unholy, pagan masses or condemn anyone to any kind of afterlife.

Listen, I’m not trying to convert atheists into believers. I’m just trying to say the way schools need teachers, the way Kathy Lee needed Regis, that’s the way I need Jesus.

Oh…wait…that was Kanye.

So anyway, much like how most of my reviews are targeted at folks who enjoy schmoopy romance novels or other girly books, I am going to aim this one at the Christian sector. If this doesn’t float your train, you might want to sit this one out. No harm, no foul. But, if you’d like to get into a deep religious and philosophical debate about the existence of God, feel free to email me at completelymissedthepoint@hotmail.com.*

Ok, everybody happy? Well I should say…

I came across Erasing Hell one day while I was shelving new books (it’s like shopping, but without a credit card!).  My immediate thought was that it was going to tell me how hell isn’t real and how we can do anything we want whenever we want without consequences.

Hello prevalent world view.

But as I read through the first few pages, I came to realize that the authors were not espousing their own beliefs, but they had researched the Biblical truths regarding the existence of hell. They dug into history, placing Jesus and Paul’s preachings on hell into the context of a 1st century Christian – what the Jewish tradition was and what the people had always held to be true about hell. The authors defined original Greek words based on the context of usage and compared them to other uses in the Bible in order to get the best definitions and meanings.

Erasing Hell is one of the most strongly argued books, based on solid Biblical facts, that I have ever read. A lot of times religion can stir up emotions and fervor – which does not make for any kind of a rational argument. We fight over whose dogma is more right – Catholics vs. Methodists vs. Baptists, etc. Chan and Sprinkle removed the emotional crutch by simply focusing on what the Bible says about hell – even to the point of being uncomfortable with their findings.

Hell, like God, is binary. Either it exists or it doesn’t (atheists, please refer to the above email for further clarification). And as Christians, or really any other religion for that matter – most have some sort of “place for punishment”, it is our duty to learn what we can about it in order to live successfully.

I’d start here.

Happy reading…
:) Amanda

*This is not a real email, so please don’t send anything. It was just a funny way to say that this is not the forum for religious discussion. The library has books about religion and I happened to think this was a good one. That is all.

Popmatic Podcast September 2011

By , September 1, 2011

School’s ou… I mean in, so we share our surprisingly dark back to school picks. Crystal couldn’t join us but she gives as many picks as the rest of us combined via the Off the Shelf blog. We close with what’s tickling our fancy: historical sagas, neu-horror, awe-inspiring teachers and other bestseller alternatives.


Things we talked about

Columbine by Dave Cullen

The Small Rain by Madeleine L’Engle

To Sir, With Love starring Sidney Poitier (film version, only on VHS for now)

To Sir, With Love by E.R. Braithwaite (original book)

Dead Poets Society

Letters to a Teacher by Sam Pickering

Codex by Lev Grossman

Heart-shaped Box by Joe Hill

Outlander by Diana Gabaldon

Tree of Smoke by Dennis Johnson on CD performed by Will Patton

Crystal’s big list of back to school picks

Jesse’s evidence that spoilers are good:  Spoilers ‘do not ruin stories’, study says

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