Sunday, December 29, 2019

On the 2010s movies and TV shows

On the 2010s in movies
Every February I rank the movies that defined the past calendar year. With the decade coming to a close, it felt natural to do the same exercise for the entire 2010s - and to throw in the defining TV shows for good measure. I don't have the energy to do more than write a long list, but I've linked to everything I've written in the past. But before that, some FAQs:

Thursday, July 4, 2019

On my season-long college football bar crawl

One undeniable part of the appeal of sports (to me, at least) is the communal aspect. When the game goes well, it's fun to feed off the energy of others, and when things don't go well there's comfort in numbers and solidarity. No matter how convenient the living room may be, I will never trade it for the roar of a stadium, or even a sports bar, gone wild. I believe this to be exponentially more true with college sports. I think most would agree that college stadiums/arenas are much more raucous than professional ones  - the best professional sports venues are usually described as a "college-like atmosphere". I've always theorized that college sports fandom tend to be more passionate than pro sports fandom, because your college team is the one you chose, as opposed to the one your parents did. Moreover, college is so often such a formative and memorable time of your life that it's easy to see why people retain such a strong emotional bond to their college team. However, I believe that college football fandom reaches an even higher level, because the unique form of sectional pride that gets attached to college football teams. I could go on for hours about the geopolitics of college football, but for your sake, I'll refrain.

Sunday, February 24, 2019

On the 2019 Oscars

I didn't watch many movies this year, due in part to lack of time and energy. Ok it was mostly due to being lazy. That said, here are my thoughts!

The Pics

Game Night

  • This movie is about Max (Jason Bateman) learning that winning isn't about what you accomplish - it's about the people with whom you accomplish it. That's how he goes from being almost voluntarily infertile to putting a bun in Annie's (Rachel McAdams's) oven.
  • This may be heresy, but I think the opening sequence from Game Night is close to the same level as the one from Up. Both concisely tell the story of a life lived to the fullest between soulmates. Also, Game Night is the best movie of the year to feature Don't Stop Me Now.
  • A lesser movie would have made its female lead into a killjoy waiting for her man-child to grow up, all while making you wonder why she was ever into him in the first place. I love that this movie gives Annie a rich personality. She's just as competitive as Max, and she actually complements him rather than just putting up with him - McAdams has a lot of the best lines and gags in the movie. She wants to have a baby but it's not her defining character trait - if Max doesn't want it that's fine, not hard feelings, but she just won't wait around for him.
  • The subplots involving the side characters were really well written - you could describe those subplots without even mentioning Max and Annie and it would still be entertaining.