thinglets: I will not see any summer movie that...

With the myriad of films released each summer, it takes a discerning formula to parse out the titles I will NEVER see from the ones that I might. As such, I offer up a filtering system to reduce your summer wallet suck to a minimum.

I will not see any summer movie that...

  1. Has Adam Sandler, Will Ferrell, or Jack Black.
  2. Has Sara Jessica Parker, Renee Zellweger.
  3. Has people wearing leather armour, chaps, or quivers.
  4. Has the word Fockers, Karate, or MacGruber in it.
  5. Has candy-ass sparkle vampires.
  6. Has the words Nightmare, Elm, and Street.
  7. Is an animated film featuring a green ogre, an over-sized dog, step-dancing or cheerleading.
  8. Has a title beginning with "Legend of the Guardians" or ending with "The Owls of Ga'Hoole".
  9. Has 3D in the title.
  10. Is a sequel, remake, re-imagining, has a "Part" or colon in the title.

Wow... guess I just saved ALL my money this summer.

lovehate: Olympic Mascots

I don't quite know what to say.

The traditional concept of a mascot is to be representative of a team or organization. Above all, there is usually something identifiable. Whether it be an animal or mythological figure or paper clip that invades the top of my screen and asks inane questions whenever I cannot figure out how to execute a rarely used function in MS Word... DAMN YOU CLIPPY!

So then how have the mascot for recent Olympic Games become such twisted anime mutations that they make me question how in the hell a creative team found these creatures acceptable much less endearing. I have not done any research into what the mascots are actually supposed to be, thus giving myself a pure guess at the genesis of the creatures.

Here are my deconstructions of the Vancouver 2010 mascots:

Sumi is some sort of crazy mutant BearOwl wearing a Rollerball helmet with three Antichrist horns. His/Her eyes are set apart so far as to wonder how it sees forward. (Such a design decision is part of all of the 2010 mascots) Sumi also wears some kind of jersey/poncho in a funky Dark Green, Lime Green, Orange combination that is a worse look than the Vancouver Canucks mistaken jersey of the 80s. Overall, Sumi is a butchered bastard child of gene grafting.

I'm guessing Quatchi is a Sasquatch, and considering that the creature I'm most sure of is an urban legend, you can tell how far over the cliff we've gone here. Coming fully-equipped with Sky Blue earmuffs and crazy ink of the Olympic logos, for some reason he/she is also wearing boots which make Quatchi fairly civilized considering the wild origins of such creatures. Badly in need of a haircut, Quatchi also suffers from lack of elbows and bowed arms.

Miga is either a cat, panda or skunk, or all three together. Equipped with a scarf and all dolled-up with rouge, Miga looks like she/he's the one to be caught out on the town with a foreign athlete. Decked out in a green scarf suitable for S&M choke play, Miga looks most probable to win the most outstanding supporting mascot in an anime style. Not sure what the crazy Alfalfa cowlick is supposed to represent, but I'm guessing it comes in useful when the Sumi, Quatchi, Miga three way gets going underneath the bleachers pre-opening ceremonies... all I can say is that, if Miga is walking funny during the torch lighting, my views will be justified.

I think that during the preparation for the next Olympics, the world should demand real mascots that represent actual creatures. Maybe we should bring back Spuds Mackenzie and just have the IOC admit that the entire event is really about shilling products and selling television contracts.

Brought to you by the Official Blog of the Vancouver Games...

The All New FREE lovehatethings 2009 eBook

Well, I've spent the past three nights combining, collating, indexing, and editing the new lovehatethings 2009 eBook. There are probably still plenty of errors in there, but I've never been a stickler for details... well, my own details anyway.
Here are some stats on two years worth of lovehatethings eBooks:
They're available both for free reading and downloading. You can read only at and you can either read or download a PDF at
As of this post, lovehatethings 2008 eBook has been viewed just under 8000 times at MyeBook and just over 1000 at Scribd.
lovehatethings 2008 was 107 pages, 39090 words, 221536 characters.
lovehatethings 2009 was 209 pages, 73114 words, 413672 characters. 
I never thought before last year's compilation that there would be anywhere near as much content there. I have to say that even though the process of putting the document together took some time, it was essentially busy work. If I could do it, anyone could.
Thanks to everyone who's read the lovehatethings blog or listened to the podcast over the last year and a half. I only get more encouraged when I post something one night and by the next night I have 200-300 views. I know it doesn't sound like much, but it helps the creative fire.
I would encourage anyone who blogs to consider compiling their thoughts into eBook form. With all of the readers coming out over the next year, this format might explode and drive traffic back to your blog and subscriptions. I hope, and expect, that all new e-readers will support PDF and that one day I'll meet someone at random who has lovehatethings downloaded while on the road.

thinglets: Film-A-Month Faves For 2010 (Part Two)

And so to complete my Film-A-Month Faves for the 2010 year. (Part One Picks here) No doubt they'll differ with yours, which should be all the impetus you need to go out, do some research, and discover why I'm right. The second half source of the film picks is provided by


Tons of summer blockbusters and feelgood flicks for one and all in July. There's a Tom Cruise action yarn in Knight & Day, a kooky Steve Carrell comedy in Despicable Me, and a pretty good looking dark sci-fi pic in Inception. Yet even with all the big blockbusters that will probably take home the green, the film I'm waiting for is The Last Airbender.

If you've never seen the anime series entitled Avatar: The Last Airbender, (I know. Get used to it.) then you need to download, borrow, or buy the three seasons of one of the most captivating cartoon story arcs to come out in years. I never thought I'd like the style, but was quickly drawn into the mythos and the characters. I really want this film to work, and am both excited and scared shitless to see M. Night Shyamalan at the helm.

There's also a Predator reboot, a fantasy film with Nick Cage, another Fockers film, and a spy film with Angelina this month. Great time for credit roll theater sliding.


August holds what could be a funny comedy concept that will be destroyed by Will Farrell, a voyage of self-discovery by Julia Roberts, and Paul Bettany playing a warrior/priest. And my film pick of the month is probably the most cliche pick for a guy my age: The Expendables.

I've been waiting for a film like this for years. Although they've sprinkled in a few too many still viable stars for my liking, this Stallone vehicle is sure to walk away with the exploding cake this summer (I don't even know what that means). If Arnold wasn't pretending to be a politician. he would've been perfect in this. As it is, Stallone, Statham, Jet Li, Dolph Lundgren and Mickey Rourke... that this film even got made without one of them stabbing another is beyond me. Got to see it!


Okay. I'll say it first. September 2010 sucks for films. If I wasn't up to my neck in nine months of this list already, I'd just say stay home and get ready for hockey season. But since I've made the commitment, and I'm under the impression things will suck anyway, I'm going to use this opportunity to break a cardinal rule and see an Adam Sandler film. Actually, my hopes are high in that Sandler wrote this film, but does not star in it.

The premise for Born to Be a Star actually looks pretty funny: a young man discovers his parents were porn stars in the 70s and heads to the big city to echo their successes. Although I've given up on Adam Sandler films being much beyond a premise and coin flip these days, this premise could win with head or tail - although it does have the Pauly Shore factor to overcome.


I didn't think September's suckage could be topped, but October comes close. With a handful of fluff releases including Jackass 3D and Saw VII (I ain't makin' this shit up), and a film that I probably will eventually see in Red (Bruce Willis and Morgan Freeman), my October pick is (cringe) The Social Network.

It's not that I really care too much about Zuckerberg and the Facebook story, it's just that they had to go and get Aaron Sorkin to write the screenplay and David Fincher to direct it... hell, if Sorkin and Fincher worked on Jackass 3D, I'd go to see it instead. I imagine the story will be heavily embellished and likely disappointing for many, but I do like Jesse Eisenberg as "the other Michael Cera" in most films.


Movies in November that scare me because they've got tempting elements, but otherwise repulsive qualities: Megamind (+Brad Pitt, +Tina Fey, -Will Ferrell), Unstoppable (+Chris Pine, +Denzel Washington, -plot), Red Dawn (+nostalgia, -sacrilege). And I'm not going to see the new Harry Potter, but am afraid if I trash it, some Hogwart's geek will cast a virus spell on me. My pick is Due Date... and hear me out on this one.

It has Robert Downey Jr. and Zach Galifianakis in what looks to be a reworking of Planes, Trains and Automobiles. Now I know that this could be a bomb of epic proportions, but to see these two together on screen could be comedy gold.


Almost a full year away and the 2010 Film-A-Month Faves picks ends with a tough pick between two nostalgia winners: Tron: Legacy and The Green Hornet. Here's the thing... I'm expecting less out of the The Green Hornet because of the Seth Rogen pick. I hope he does a great job, but we already know that while this might be a fun film, it's not going to be a Dark Knight. Tron has more potential to disappoint me because of the regard I held for the original film during my childhood. I know that I will see both of these films, but if I had to pick one, it would be Tron - not because I know it will be better, but because I think it has the potential to be.

This also means I'll probably be relegating the next chapter of The Chronicles of Narnia to the rental pile, but so be it. If Aslan doesn't like it, he can come and get some.

P.S. December film I will NEVVVVER see... Gulliver's Travels starring Jack Black (shudder).

So that's it. Film-A-Month Faves for 2010. Let me know if you agree or not. And remember, Hollywood films set revenue records in 2009. If you wouldn't pay to see a film in a theater, but some friend has a pirated Russian download on their screen... give it two minutes, or twenty... maybe you'll go and see it in the theater... or not... in which case nobody lost anything because you would never have seen it anyway.

thinglets: Film-A-Month Faves for 2010 (Part One)

My second annual Film-A-Month Faves starts with this January to June 2010 list. The release dates may change over the course of the year. I'm taking this year's information from While I'm not saying that I won't see other films that come out, the thoughts of the lovehatemind may surprise you as we look into the future.

And if you're keeping score, my fav film of 2009: UP

My tweet review of Sherlock Holmes: "Imagine Basil Rathbone in Snatch and there you go."

My tweet review of Avatar: "Just went to see Avatar IMAX 3D: Good film that would've been great had it not tried to be amazing."

And so, on with 2010...


While Legion and Daybreakers kind of look cool for the popcorn munching side of my brain and Youth in Revolt promises more Michael Cera playing Michael Cera, (which, don't get me wrong, I dig most times) I'm going off book and choosing Saint John of Las Vegas. It's got Steve Buscemi, Sarah Silverman, Peter Dinklage, and Emmanuelle Chirqui in it. It's got Las Vegas in the title. Now don't get me wrong; I'm not the kind of guy who's gonna go for the obscure indie film just to score cred, but I really think this one has promise, and the thought of some of these actors getting the chance to play off of one another intrigues the hell out of me.

I'll also admit that this is a bit of a cop out as the film only releases in NY and LA in January and wider in February... I'm hoping they just forgot to put Toronto in the January limited release, so I can see it there.


Okay, The Wolfman looks is the popcorn muncher, and Cop Out (formerly A Couple of Dicks) is probably a film I'll make it to eventually out of respect for Kevin Smith and Bruce Willis, (because Tracy Morgan annoys the hell out of me) this month's pick will be Shutter Island. I'm not a DiCaprio devotee, but I'll admit to forming increasing respect for his abilities over the years. While this film also has an awesome supporting cast, including Mark Ruffalo, Ben Kingsley and Max von Sydow, the biggest piece of the puzzle is Scorsese.

On seeing the trailer of this film it looks like your average horror/thriller, but why do I know there's got to be something more? Answering this question is what's going to take me to the multiplex to see this one.


Anyone else tired of the Burton/Depp matchup? I know I am. I like Depp in almost anything, but lately Burton's stagnation in his own style has made me disaffected. I mean, more power to him if he can make the films he wants, the way he wants to, but I can't take it anymore. Needless to say Alice in Wonderland won't be my March pick. Neither will Clash of the Titans, because while the camp value of the original picture was enjoyable, to scoop branding for a big budget epic they could have easily rebranded is disgusting. (The original Bubo was Da Bomb Yo!) 

Instead, I'm going with Green Zone. It's got three things: espionage, Matt Damon and Paul Greengrass directing (remind you of a trilogy). While it's not going to have a crazy made-up Depp or freaky CG dragons, [TROGDOR!!!] I do know that I'll probably be walking into the stylistic equivalent of the Bourne films. And while Burton's style has grown tiresome to me, Greengrass' hasn't... yet.


While Kickass and The Losers both look fun for pretty much the same reasons. Repo Men is going to win April for me. Jude Law is not always great, but is usually good. It simply comes down to the fact that in addition to Law, Forest Whitaker AND Liev Schreiber are also both in this film. That, combined with the quirky premise means it's something I've got to see. I know that friends will come screaming to me about how I may be missing out on McLovin' in a cape.

SPOILER ALERT: As far as I know, Repo Men, thankfully, does NOT include Emilio Estevez, though a Harry Dean Stanton cameo would've been off the hook.

And by the way, I will never, ever, EVER, EVVVVER! see MacGruber the movie.


Iron Man 2. Really. No shit Sherlock. I know it seems like a populist pick. While the cast of Robin Hood looks interesting, and CG of Prince of Persia will remind me of The Mummy Trilogy and probably be swallowed up by Sex in the City 2 on opening weekend, Tony Stark is the man... the Iron Man... wow, wasn't that clever? 

I suppose if I have to go beyond the limits of my suspended disbelief for a weekend I'd rather NOT go to Nottingham, be PERSUADED by Persia, or be CARRIED away.

Apologies for the wordplay. I'll refrain from doing that again and wrap up with...


June is going to be a HUGE box office month. First off, the films I will NEVER see: Killers, Marmaduke, The Karate Kid, Grown Ups. Films I will see at some point: The A-Team (though I dread its failure), Get Him to the Greek (could be hilarious), Jonah Hex (cast and curiosity).

My June pick, however, is Toy Story 3. It's been a long time coming, but no one tells a story like Pixar. I don't even need to know what the plot will be about because the characters and reputation are enough. There are not many films that you come out of feeling like you've been on a ride, but Pixar makes such films. I'm an unabashed fanboy... although why do I fear that Mickey might make an appearance?

And a sad final note to Part One of this two night epic post: The third Twilight is slated for June 30th, and I SOOOO wish I could say I'll never watch it, but I saw the first while typing a particularly angry blog post, and I was happy with the result. I may just need the Sparklevamps for inspiration.

Stay tuned tomorrow for Part Two...