Pop! Inspired

Sums up the evening quite well.

Sums up the evening quite well. Courtesy of The Daily What.

Mallory and I had a grand old time watching the 2009 VMA’s last night.  We tried to avoid it LIVE but we were sucked in by Kanye’s and Gaga’s ridiculousness. Plus Mad Men and Bridezillas wasn’t doing it for us. So we watched despite our initial protests, we watched despite the fact that we felt super old the entire time and yearned for the past where actual (and good!) music videos played on MTV. Gosh, we even watched most of the encore.

Here are some excerpts of our evening. Warning: Looong, but funny!

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Nome, Alaska may not be an alien hub but it sure looks interesting nonetheless.

Nome, Alaska may not be an alien hub but it sure looks interesting nonetheless.

Photo by ra64 on Flickr.

Mallory and I were quite surprised with all the reaction we got from our “Milla Jovovich is a liar” post on the movie The Fourth Kind. So much so we decided to do an update.

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The Blind Side trailer makes the movie look like your typical rich-people-save-poor-kid-ala-The-OC story with Sandra Bullock as blonde haired Texas momma who takes in a poor black boy. When Marcy and I saw the trailer, we yawned. It looked more suited for Lifetime or an after-school special than the big screen in November and the title didn’t make any sense.

Yesterday, Gawker posted a stunning revelation: the movie is based on the football book of the same name by Michael Lewis, author of Moneyball. That’s where the title comes from – football!

Here’s a description of the book from Amazon:

The Blind Side: Evolution of a Game
From Publishers Weekly
Starred Review. As he did so memorably for baseball in Moneyball, Lewis takes a statistical X-ray of the hidden substructure of football, outlining the invisible doings of unsung players that determine the outcome more than the showy exploits of point scorers. In his sketch of the gridiron arms race, first came the modern, meticulously choreographed passing offense, then the ferocious defensive pass rusher whose bone-crunching quarterback sacks demolished the best-laid passing game, and finally the rise of the left tackle—the offensive lineman tasked with protecting the quarterback from the pass rusher—whose presence is felt only through the game-deciding absence of said sacks.

Is Sandy going to sack the quarterback? Where’s the Texas mom in this? Oh wait, we still have more description to go… Read the rest of this entry »

Rory Gilmore and Matt Saracen graduate. From Fox Searchligh.

Rory Gilmore and Matt Saracen graduate. From Fox Searchlight.

Post-Grad, starring Alexis Bledel, opened last weekend to poor reviews and tanked at the box office. In the film’s defense, the Quarterlife Crisis is a hard sell: Reality Bites and Garden State were cult hits, Kevin Williamson’s Wasteland was canceled after three episodes and the internet/NBC series Quarterlife barely made it off the internet. As a current Quarterlifer, I’m not interested in ever seeing any of the above mentioned and here’s why.

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Balance houses and wind energy in Build-A-Lot 4

Literally. Power sources are the newest feature in the fourth Build-A-Lot game and it’s a new challenge to get used to. You can’t build too many houses at once or else there’s a blackout – you need more power!

The point-and-click, real estate-strategy concept of Build-A-Lot has stayed pretty much the same in every incarnation: You build houses and improve a neighborhood to meet certain goals. Houses have residents that pay rent and help up your income. Certain houses cost more money and materials, but also bring in more money. Painting houses increases the “appeal” of the neighborhood, while upgrades increase the value (and rent!). Recreational items, like tennis courts and parks, and stores increase the appeal of a neighborhood.

Now, you can also add Energy Savers to the houses. Unfortunately, it doesn’t increase the income of the house, but it does decrease the amount of power it uses. Power sources, like a wind farm, decrease the appeal of the neighborhood, so it takes a lot of planning to make sure you can counteract that with a tennis court or surround it with a bunch of pretty painted houses. The new, energy-conscious additions remind me a lot of NatGeo’s Plan It Green, which was basically an ultra Go-Green game following the Built-A-Lot formula.

Build-A-Lot always made real estate fun. Now, it’s making energy fun.

Buy the game or play the 60-minute free trial [Big Fish Games]

Is Milla Jovovich portraying a dead zombie?

Is Milla Jovovich portraying a dead zombie?

UPDATE: Please see our latest post on this movie.

Last night when Mallory and I went to see District 9 we were treated to about a half hour of trailers. One of them was for a movie called The Fourth Kind, which neither of us had ever heard of before.

Let me first admit, it scared the crap out of me. Mostly because Milla Jovovich walked out of, like, some wooded area at the beginning of the trailer to tell us that she was portraying a real life person, Dr. Abigail Tyler, and that the movie is supported by real archival footage. The movie is about Milla aka Dr. Tyler treating all these patients in Nome, Alaska who keep having the same visions of a scary owl. Apparently all these people were abducted. Not sure if it was by the owl.

Anyhow, of course, on the way home on the subway, Mallory and I set forth to investigate how real this movie was. Well, mostly it was Mallory and her blackberry.What we found shocked us. Because we found nothing.

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Workers workin' in My Kingdom for the Princess

What is this mess? My Kingdom for the Princess begins after a tornado leaves the kingdom in shambles and you’ve got to get Princess Helen back to her father. The point-and-click strategy game involves you and your little worker(s) cutting up fallen trees, fixing dilapidated roads and bridges, scaring away ghosts and renovating old buildings so the princess’ carriage can make it to the next stage.

Much like Nanny Mania, another clean-up game, tasks take different amounts of time and the order you build certain buildings and start processes all depends on your goals and what’s available to you. For example, if you know you have to remove a lot of boulders, build goldmines as soon as you can and make sure you have sources of food, since the process takes up a lot of both resources. This gets very challenging at later levels, where let’s say you can’t build a sawmill, but your goal is to have a 50 supply of wood. Uh oh. You better find a lot of trees.

Figuring out the order and priorities of each level is the most fun and frustrating part. The little workers, too, are a little frustrating because they can only handle one task at a time and must return home before being assigned another one. It’s worth the stress and the game keeps upping the ante. Just when you think you have the jungle figured out, you’re off to the desert, where workers are sluggish without a water well built. The game also anticipates your needs: Freebie food, lumber and gold appear on the map randomly and it’s a big relief when you need them.

If you finish the level before the narrator says, “Night is approaching,” you’ll be able to expand your castle and you’re not truly done with the game until you’ve built the entire castle. Bonuses, which are different at every level, help workers work or move faster, provide you with an extra worker or stop the clock for a few seconds and they are always needed. Believe me. Use them when you can, especially to fight nightfall.

Buy the game or download the free 60-minute trial [Big Fish Games]

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