Friday, December 26, 2008

All I Want for Christmas is Hanukkah

Christmas in Korea is not nearly as crass and blaring as America. I went to a restaurant with my stepmom's relatives and ate a ton of food and that was that.

At some point recently I passed the halfway point (6 months) in my Korean life. I have less than 100 days of teaching left, but it's spread over 6 months. I'm pretty sure I won't be doing a second year in Korea. Not anytime soon, anyway.

My vacation just started. Woo.

Dark Knight. It was pretty good and watchable, I guess. "Good action movie" - isn't that what the kids say. Kind of reminded me of Casino Royale the way it kept moving and upping the ante. Or like a "greatest hits" version of the best action scenes in the comic. But it also didn't really feel like the cool detective ninja in the Batman comics. Partly because of Christopher Nolan's clunky fight choreography (I complained about this my cutting-edge Batman Begins review). And also because this could have been James Bond in a costume (and kind of a lame costume in this film). None of the Batman movies seem to pick up that he's "the world's greatest detective." Christian Bale is a great Bruce Wayne, though. It's just when he puts on the Batman mask and starts speaking in a retarded growl . . . some things just shouldn't migrate from the printed page.

I think I have definite ideas about what Batman is because I grew up on the comics. Writers like Denny O'Neil, Chuck Dixon, Alan Grant, and Frank Miller got the Batman concept so right that almost everything else looks wrong. I could write a lot more but everybody else already did so what's the point.

For the next Batman movie they should get a new actor and director, set it forty years in the future, and do
Dark Knight Returns. I'm not a big fan of that comic (the Frank Miller Batman I like is Batman: Year One) but it'd be a good way to keep the franchise fresh.

I listened to Malcolm Gladwell's
Outliers. I kind of like Gladwell's idea about the 10,000 hour rule, but Gladwell himself kind of annoys me. I've read all his books, and I'd love to parody his prose style in fiction. And whenever I see an interview with him I want to punch him.

Tried listening to the new Antony and the Johnsons album, got bored.

It's hella cold out. And yet... I kind of get used to it when it's not windy. Suddenly anything over 40 seems nice and toasty.

Planning a big trip for late '09 - at least three continents, methinks.

I'll try to blog more now that I'm off.

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Blogger John said...

I think TDK worked less as a "Batman" movie and more as a psychological thriller about a guy who happens to dress up like a Bat (the interrogation part as the best example). Bale carried Begins IMO but I actually lost interest in him here, and I think he's usually one of the best actors of his generation. I dunno if it's because the conflict with Dent was more interesting or if it was because Heath Ledger was so awesome and stole the whole movie. Batman was actually kind of the least interesting character in the whole thing, but I do think it's the only "comic book movie" so far that could be considered a definitively great film years from now. Strip away the comic book elements and it's just a really great thriller.

New Antony album is pretty good but kind of repetitive, so I know what you mean.

1:14 PM  

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