Friday, May 30, 2014

Pick O' the Week - May 30

This week the world lost the incomparable Maya Angelou, and I just wanted to take a moment to mention that because even though it's not entertainment news, I've always had a great amount of respect for her and her work and I feel it's important to note.  She said a lot of things that made a lot of sense and she stood up for the things that she believed in and that's something that I respect a great deal.  I'm not going to pretend that her death will change my life in some fundamental way (though for her family I'm sure it will) but  I can say that her work has always struck me as thoughtful, wise and measured and I think that's something there isn't enough of these days.

“I've learned that no matter what happens, or how bad it seems today, life does go on, and it will be better tomorrow. I've learned that you can tell a lot about a person by the way he/she handles these three things: a rainy day, lost luggage, and tangled Christmas tree lights. I've learned that regardless of your relationship with your parents, you'll miss them when they're gone from your life. I've learned that making a "living" is not the same thing as making a "life." I've learned that life sometimes gives you a second chance. I've learned that you shouldn't go through life with a catcher's mitt on both hands; you need to be able to throw something back. I've learned that whenever I decide something with an open heart, I usually make the right decision. I've learned that even when I have pains, I don't have to be one. I've learned that every day you should reach out and touch someone. People love a warm hug, or just a friendly pat on the back. I've learned that I still have a lot to learn. I've learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.”
Maya Angelou

I was going to talk about entertainment news but honestly, nothing very interesting happened this week and I'm not sure how to follow the above.  Take a beat to shake of the tone of my intro and then check out the picks below.

In Theatres: Last weekend CineCritical et al attended X-Men: Days of Future Past and I've written my review and while there are many things that I dug into in the review as perhaps not my favourite, I did overall have an enjoyable time.  Chances are I'll like it more in the re-watching than I did at the first but it's an enjoyable night out if you're looking for one this weekend.

At Home: There's not much that I've seen lately that I'd recommend for home consumption but in reviewing what's being released this month, I noticed Gloria.  Though the trailer isn't terribly inspiring, as the official Chilean submission for best foreign film at the 86th Academy Awards and starring Paulina Garcia, I'm somewhat intrigued.  It has solid reviews on Rotten Tomatoes and is available to rent from iTunes so this is my pick for this weekend.

On TV:  Video Game High School is a web series from the guys at RocketJump, which begins with the premise of an alternate reality where Video Games are played professionally by adults.  In the series, casual gamer Bryan D accidentally gets himself enrolled at the celebrated VGHS, only to discover that the political landscape of professional gaming is intense.  Already gearing up for its third season, the show has proved to be quite popular for Channel, which launched a kickstarter campaign to fund the third season and since meeting their goal has begun pre-production.  I'd recommend checking out the series, even if you're not a gamer.  It's full of old school gaming references (look for Mario Bros. references in the school quad) that casual gamers will understand the comedy moments and overall feel good tone.

Retro Re-Watch: Since this week's picks seem to have taken a "coming of age/discovering oneself" slant, I'll end with one of my favourite films: Trainspotting.  It's available to rent on iTunes and follows the exploits of a group of Glaswegians caught in the haze of a drug fueled youth.  More than a little disturbing on your first viewing, it nonetheless features powerful performances from Ewan McGregor, Ewen Bremner, Johnny Lee Miller, Kevin McKidd, Robert Carlyle and Kelly Macdonald.

Enjoy your weekends everyone!

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