January 28, 2013

Monday Video(s): Lord of the Rings – The MUSICAL

This is a real thing that exists…Happy Monday!

(The music is surprisingly good. I can’t speak to the rest of the show, having never seen it. Although the costumes and a lot of the choreography seems on the silly side of things. Still. Enjoy!)

Galadriel’s big number (I love this actress’ voice):

This is my favorite song ever. Duet between Frodo and Sam. SO GOOD.

Do you have a geeky video you think would be perfect for next Monday? Drop a line. Let us know. 🙂

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January 21, 2013

Monday Video: Plot Device

Slightly longer video today, but so fun. This is for all the movie geeks out there.

Plot Device:

My favorite part? “I don’t have any interest in doing that at all.”

 

January 14, 2013

Monday Video: Dance, Vader, Dance!

Happy Monday! Today we bring you something that set my little heart squeeing with glee when I first saw it:

Darth Vader (and company) dancing to Michael Jackson.

I am particularly impressed with the cape action. Who knew Darth had the moves like this?

Enjoy!

January 7, 2013

It’s Monday, Have a Video

I’ve noticed a lot of sites do “Friday Videos” but, really, when did you need a funny video to brighten your humdrum life? On Friday when you’re free, free, FREE for the weekend? Or Monday when you’re faving five more days of day-job grind?

I think the answer should be fairly obvious. And so, I announce a new feature at #Nerdgirls: The Monday Video.

To kick off this new feature I give you:

The entire Star Wars original trilogy in Two Minutes.

Done with LEGOS!

FTW.

You’re welcome.

January 3, 2013

Happy birthday, Professor Tolkein!

Happy birthday, Professor Tolkein!

This amuses me. Oh so much.

December 21, 2012

NerdGirls Chat for The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey (A Big Fangirl Squee and Sort-of Review)

So, thatdarongirl and I, Beth Matthews, have been wanting to do this NerdGirls chat thing for a while. Basically the two of us having a long involved discussion about some geek relevant topic which we would then present here for the delectation of you, our fellow geeks. We finally managed to get our act together.

Basically, this is our long and in depth geeking out-conversation about The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey. Enjoy! Please feel free to argue or make your own points. As you can see from this conversation: discussion is encouraged.

Let us all be geeks together! 🙂

the hobbit

DARON: Hello.

BETH: Hello. My cat just jumped onto my lap. He wants to talk about The Hobbit too, or get petted. Either way…

DARON:  Katie’s cat was typing to me earlier. Lots of nonsense.

BETH:  Cats are not very good film critics. OK, first of all, the big debate: 24fps or 48fps. You saw the movie in 3D at the 48fps. Any thoughts?

DARON:  You know, there’s been a lot of talk of the movie not being “cinematic” due to the frame rate. It’s just not true. I was blown away by the imagery in this movie.

BETH:  I don’t see how it could NOT be “cinematic” with them filming in New Zealand. I was drooling over the landscape shots.

DARON:  Yes! The flying eagles! I have to say that, more than any of the LOTR movies, this movie made me want to BE in middle earth. It’s the tone, a little more playful maybe.

BETH:  hmmm….I think I still lean toward Fellowship for that. So many hobbitses! I want to be a hobbit, I cannot lie.

DARON:  But the feet! So hairy!

BETH:  But the hobbit holes!

DARON:  I do want a hobbit hole.

BETH:  So, Martin Freeman as Bilbo…

DARON:  He is absolutely perfect.

BETH: I think he should get an Oscar nod. His Bilbo is career defining, take it to the next level, brilliant as hell, genius-level work.

DARON:  What did you like about his performance? What was your favorite scene?

BETH: Well, I’m a Martin Freeman fan from way back. I adore him in Love Actually, and then more recently watching him play Watson on Sherlock. He’s just…he’s very natural, and he has this really great physicality. Subtle little twists and ticks, things he does with his head and face. For instance: the “I am a Baggins of Bag End” line, and with this hand gesture and voice you get exactly what that MEANS.

DARON:  Totally agree.

BETH:  I really love the part during the dinner party where Bilbo goes to the other room to get away, but he can hear the dwarves singing. And his face; he wants to be a part of that, he wants to go.

DARON:  I love that you pick up on those details.

BETH:  I used to be an actor, remember? LOL.

DARON:  But it’s so true, it always seemed like a strange decision to me, for a hobbit to go out seeking adventure, but it was obvious in the movie that Bilbo is just an adventurous spirit! Even though he pretends otherwise. I guess it helps to have a wizard giving you a push.

BETH:  Yes, but they also show the push and pull for Bilbo: the sensible Baggins in him vs. the adventurous Took. I liked the Old Took stories. They were a good addition, helped give family background.

DARON:  You know, I was worried that Jackson decided to do three films but now I understand why—he wants to give us all those stories and that detail. Man, I’m a sucker for detail. I LOVE it! Detail NOT at the expense of story, though! AHEM like some other prequels we could name

BETH: I know! I thought that was such a good point in the Scalzi article.

DARON: Yep, anyone reading this should go read the Scalzi review here. NOW.

BETH: And this is the particular bit of that review that we are referring to:

“…[a] fair comparison would be to put The Hobbit up to the first installment over another hotly anticipated first movie in a prequel trilogy, i.e., The Phantom Menace. Compared to that movie, The Hobbit is an absolute joy; it makes sense, it doesn’t crap all over the films which preceded it, storywise, and it doesn’t merely rely on special effects to drag the audience through. Jackson doesn’t reach the heights he hit with Fellowship of the Ring or the other movies in Lord of the Rings, but he doesn’t embarrass himself or have to excuse his choices. And when I left the theater, I was genuinely looking forward to the next installment instead of desperately hoping it would redeem the first movie, which is what I felt with Phantom.” ~John Scalzi

BETH: Anyway, SO pacing…I feel like this one was a little padded. Like some of the stuff that was added in was not as organically incorporated as the additions in LOTR were.

DARON:  Yes, when Radagast just randomly appears it was a little jarring.

BETH: The scene with Galadriel sticks out as one of those moments for me. I was like “Why is this here?” It felt as if the filmmakers said, “oh, we want Cate Blanchett in the movie; where can we stick her”?

DARON:  Well, I will say about Galadriel: I know they probably stuck her in there so we’d get at least ONE female in the movie.

BETH:  That’s what I figured too.

DARON:  But there’s a great story about Galadriel and Gimli’s gift which I love. Hold on let me find it…

BETH:  The thing with Feanor? Teh GR8Test Elf WHO EVAH lived. (Besides Santa Claus…)

DARON:  Hahaha yes!

BETH: I think I pinned it. Oh, this isn’t it but…

https://i0.wp.com/25.media.tumblr.com/tumblr_m086zvtPwZ1qbow3so2_250.gif

DARON:  LOLOLOL. That hair!

BETH: Synchronized flipping. All dwarf princes have to master it.

DARON:  I was a little disappointed by the three baby-faced dwarves to be honest, but Oakenshield grew on me

(Ed. This bit of the conversation below actually happened AT THE EXACT SAME TIME.)

BETH:  WAIT! I found the Feanor thing…

DARONhttp://imgur.com/a/dTBVO

Here it is!

BETHhttp://themetapicture.com/a-heartwarming-explanation-to-a-scene-in-lord-of-the-rings/

LOLOL. Photofinish!

DARON:  YES, I love this, that Jackson took the time to build this up. You really don’t get a sense of the gravity of the dwarf/elf bad blood in the LOTR movies. It’s just a lot of “oh that Gimli! Look, he fell off a horse again.” The fact that Galadriel gave Gimli her hair is a BIG DEAL, and I think The Hobbit sets that dynamic up a little bit.

BETH:  Yes I’m expecting Thorin’s hateration on elves to pay out in the third one. With the Arkenstone.

DARON:  ooOoOoOoO The arkenstone. Let’s talk about the scene that all the critics are calling “worth sitting through the rest of the movie”…the game of riddles. Damn Gollum is a nasty little SOB.

BETH:  Yes. Oscar gold for that scene alone, man.

DARON:  Oscar gold for Martin Freeman?

BETHBOTH. Andy Serkis deserves a motherfucking Oscar.

DARON:  AMEN. They should really give a “best scene” Oscar.

BETH:  YES. The thing with Serkis is if the Academy can’t bring themselves to award him a normal one for motion capture work, well, there are “Special Oscars” they can give out. I think for all the stuff he’s done to advance motion capture performance he should get one [ /rant ]

DARON:  Preaching to the choir my friend

BETH: What was your favorite part of the riddle scene? Favorite detail?

DARON:  I was mainly struck by how repulsive Gollum was (or I guess “bad” Gollum was), and how difficult Bilbo’s choice to spare him must have been because when he’s pounding away at that goblin’s head with a rock? Ew.

BETH:  That’s interesting because one of MY favorite parts was how sort of grotesquely endearing Gollum was. I was thinking about how excited and happy he is to have company, to be playing games and riddles and then, you know, he gets to eat too. But that’s one of the things I love about the Gollum character: that horrifying mix of sociopath and lonely, wounded old creature. I was watching the scene and actually thinking about that: about how much Gollum seemed to be enjoying the riddles almost as much as the fact he was going to have a tasty hobbit snack later. I think that’s Peter Jackson being a bad ass director. How many other directors would have that kind of nuance? Would see the layers in Gollum?

DARON:  You’re right. Gollum is so interesting… and creepy. Jackson really has dedicated so much time and thought to these characters, it’s such an achievement.

BETH:  INORITE?!

DARON:  What was your LEAST favorite part of this movie?

BETH:  Hmmm. Oh! I know. Bilbo being used as a handkerchief, and the other gross-out touches that were just unnecessary. Like Radagast and the bird poo. (Ed. See picture. Yeah, that’s bird poo IN HIS HAIR. WHY???!!!) Thumbs down. The gross-out stuff pulled me out of the movie. Which I don’t feel like any of the gross stuff in LOTR did. That’s my biggest problem: gross out stuff is fine, but not when it breaks me out of the movie watching zone.hobbit-unexpected-journey-sylvester-mccoy

DARON:  I had a bit of a problem with that too, although it didn’t really derail me. I wondered whether Jackson was reaching for too young an audience in those particular instances, and those moments were out of place enough to make the tone uneven. What really messed with me was the sudden appearance and disappearance of Radagast. We’re following along with Bilbo and then suddenly we’re in a forest with a crazy wizard. There was a disconnect there for me.

BETH:  Yes, very abrupt.

DARON:  Then I’m getting into what Radagast is doing, and it’s so COOL to have another wizard! We only get the two in the books! And poof he’s out of the picture again. Side note – I have NO idea what the necromancer bit is, I don’t remember that at all.

BETH:  The Necromancer was very peripheral in The Hobbit as I recall. It’s also weirding me out why they don’t just use the name “Sauron.” I know Tolkein didn’t use that name in The Hobbit, but jeeze Jackson, you’ve already proven you don’t hold Tolkein as gospel so make the whole necromancer thing less confusing. Please.

DARON:  Yes please. I’m sure we’ll get some questions answered next movie, but that in particular makes me nervous. Last thoughts? Daron needs sleepy sleep!

BETH:  Let’s do Thorin.

DARON:  Hahahaha…

BETH:  Wow. Hello, Freudian slip. I meant, let’s DISCUSS Thorin.

DARON:  HAHAHA. The man has some super nice Dwarven locks

BETH:  Yes, very pretty.

DARON:  Is he Aragorn-lite? Maybe a little.

BETH:  That’s almost EXACTLY how I described him to my mom. Diet Aragorn.

DARON:  Well, he’s a warrior king, and a classic hero so I guess they’re all the same

BETH: That’s what I wanted to talk about with Thorin. Because I feel like Viggo Mortenson…he just IS Aragorn.

DARON:  Yes, he totally inhabits it.

BETH:  And the two of them are kind of on the same point of their kingly trajectories. But I see Richard Armitage working for it more. Viggo just…is. So, I like that we have hunky Thorin, BUT he just can’t stack up to Viggo.

DARON:  There may be a different dynamic there, Aragorn isn’t widely known to be king and doesn’t really want it.

BETH: Good point.

DARON:  We like a reluctant hero

BETH:  But, I mean, Armitage was sort of playing reluctance or doubt, like “Am i doing a good job?”thorin

DARON:  Hmm. I didn’t really look for too much nuance from him, I’ll have to watch him more closely on second viewing.

BETH: LOL.

DARON:  Him and his oakenshield…

BETH: Oh yeah baby. I’ll rub his wood.

DARON:  o.O

BETH: Sorry. Had to go there.

DARON:  Ah! I must add how much I ADORE the closing credits song.

BETH:  Yes! The music OMG! That is the one thing I felt was totally on par with anything from the original trilogy.

DARON:  I’ve been listening to it on repeat. Another great soundtrack. I’ve loved every credits song but this one is just so perfect.

BETH:  I love the guy’s voice.

DARON:  Me too! OK, I have to go, falling asleep…

BETH: Sleep tight! Dream of hobbits! And oakenshields…

DARON:  Mmmm…Thorin…

BETH:  Oakenshield…HehHehHeh…

And that’s our review/long-winded-really-detailed chat…

The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey in theaters NOW! Buy your ticket today! Do we like exclamation points?! You betcha!

September 29, 2012

E.D. Walker

OK, I know. Who doesn’t love Tom Hiddleston nowadays? He’s tall, he’s gorgeous, he’s BRITISH. Which is pretty much always a trifecta of WIN.

But, I gotta say, as beautiful as he is, what I really love most about him is his talent. (No, that’s not a euphemism. Oy, get your mind out of the gutter. *stern face*)

See, even in the relatively cheese popcorn world of Marvel superhero movies (which I LOVE with reckless abandon, don’t get me wrong) I feel like Hiddleston is still always a scene stealer. As Loki (In Thor and The Avengers) he injects a lot of richness and depth, and I think in another actor’s hands Loki could have just another mustache twirling cardboard cutout of a villain. But Hiddleson makes the character nuanced, interesting and appealing.

Check out this scene below from Thor, and think about the different layers in Hiddleston’s…

View original post 347 more words

July 4, 2012

E.D. Walker

Well, I don’t know about y’all but I’m planning to celebrate our nation’s birthday by baby-sitting my nephew today! One of the joys of having a relative who works for a theme park. They work all the holidays everybody else gets off. It’s ok, though. Gonna have a day with the nevvy. Our local theater’s open so we’re going to see Brave and have some luncheon (if we can find a restaurant that’s open…)

But, in honor of our nation’s birthday, I thought it might be fun to post my most favorite patriotic (;P) video. Enjoy! And happy 4th! 😀

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June 15, 2012

Review: Redshirts by John Scalzi

Ok, first of all, if the title of this alone doesn’t have you squeeing with glee then I’m pretty sure you should just hand over your geek credentials right now. Still, I might give you a pass, but if you read the blurb for this book and don’t start jumping up and down in fan-girlish elation then, I’m sorry, you’re not human. You’re certainly not a geek.

To prove my point, here is said blurb:

Ensign Andrew Dahl has just been assigned to the Universal Union Capital Ship Intrepid, flagship of the Universal Union since the year 2456. It’s a prestige posting, and Andrew is thrilled all the more to be assigned to the ship’s Xenobiology laboratory.

Life couldn’t be better…until Andrew begins to pick up on the fact that (1) every Away Mission involves some kind of lethal confrontation with alien forces, (2) the ship’s captain, its chief science officer, and the handsome Lieutenant Kerensky always survive these confrontations, and (3) at least one low-ranked crew member is, sadly, always killed.

Not surprisingly, a great deal of energy below decks is expended on avoiding, at all costs, being assigned to an Away Mission. Then Andrew stumbles on information that completely transforms his and his colleagues’ understanding of what the starship Intrepid really is…and offers them a crazy, high-risk chance to save their own lives.

Ok, for those of you don’t know (and really, what are you doing on this website if you don’t even know what a Redshirt is?) Redshirts are the crewmen on Star Trek who beam down to the planet with Kirk and Spock and the other main characters and then the redshirts end up getting eaten by a giant Were-Duck Space monster or melting to ooze because of some random Space Plague. Redshirts are the cannon fodder who die to let the audience know the situation is serious.

Basically, this book is Star Trek told from the Redshirts’ perspective, and they’re not taking it lying down anymore. But that’s oversimplifying. This book is just…dense. Layered. It’s Galaxy Quest with a heart. There’s dry humor and satire and meta-wink-wink-nudge-nudge stuff and really moving love stories and sadness and action and it just FUCKING ROCKS. I’m sorry, I’m not being articulate. I just finished this half and hour ago and I’m riding the high that really good fiction gives to any serious reader. This is absolutely one of the best books I’ve read in years. I read it one sitting; I just finished reading it half an hour ago and I already want to read it again. Here, to help convince you, have a sampling of some of my favorite bits:

“I really want to know what you’re smoking,” Finn said. “Because whatever the hell it is, I’m betting I can make a hell of a profit on it.”

***

“On a good day I can bang out a first draft of an episode in six hours. Is it good? It ain’t Shakespeare, but then, Shakespeare wrote Titus Andronicus, so you tell me.”

***

“What we’ve been told…is that as the flagship of the Dub U, the Intrepid takes on a larger share of sensitive diplomatic, military and research missions than any other ship in the fleet. Because of that, there is commensurate increase of risk, and this a statistically larger chance crew lives will be lost. It’s part of the risk of such a high-profile posting.”

“In other words, crew deaths are a feature, not a bug.”

***

Really, if you have even a little bit of the SF geek in your soul, if you enjoy meta-fiction and ruminations about the nature of story and characters, if you enjoy stories about underdogs and friendship and soldiering on in the face of impossible odds then pick this one up. You won’t regret it.

Buy this book. Now. John Scalzi deserves some of your money for being so fucking brilliant, AND so talented it makes me gnash my teeth in the best kind of writerly envy.

Here are some buy links:

Amazon

Barnes and Noble

By hook or crook, guile or strength or whatever READ THIS BOOK!

May 21, 2012

Weekly Want: Geeky Movie T-shirts

I thought it might be fun to do a post each week that appeals to the rapid consumer in all of our little heart of geek hearts. To that end, I’m going to comb the internets each week to find cool stuff that I personally as a rapid geek am drooling to buy but also that I think you, as my fellow geeks, will be interested in.

Now, one of my claims to fame is my t-shirt collection. It’s true, ask the other nerdgirls. It is Epic (yeah with a capital E, wut?) And many of the staples of said t-shirt collection are movie-based shirts. So, here, now, I’m going to give you a rundown of my top five Geek t-shirts. Some of these I own. Some I’m only drooling over as I eagerly await my next paycheck.

I shall explain my criteria for what makes a truly excellent movie t-shirt. First of all, it should not have just the movie poster on it. That’s too easy. That is not for the true, die-hard movie buff. Famous quotes are OK, but the better shirts are just referential. These require inside, intimate knowledge of the movies. These also get you more points with fellow nerds because it’s like being part of a secret club. Getting the obscure movie reference is like knowing the secret handshake. You are sister-geeks in the Great Sisterhood of Geekdom. Which is why this shirt, which totally could have made my list, is instead being called out for suckage:

Seriously? You have the referential thing nailed and then you blow it at the very end by saying what movie you’re referencing. T-Shirt FAIL. Totally.

Anyway, just had to get that off my chest…so now, let’s get to the good stuff. The best of the best when it comes to Geeky Movie T-shirts. Let the t-shirt bonanza begin!!!

5. The Sunnydale Reunion T-Shirt: Meets all the criteria. Referential without giving the game away to the uninitiated. Good color. Cute graphic. FTW.

4. Hoverboards Need Land: Another from one of my fav t-shirt purveyors Snorgtees.com. It’s a famous quote but that still doesn’t mean people will get the reference. (My mom didn’t. *headdesk*)

Snorg Tees really speak to my movie buff soul like no other online retail establishment. I have several of their shirts (including this other BTTF shirt over here.) And I want many, many more of them. Case in point….

3. Save Endor. Just look at this shirt. Do I need to say more? LOVE. IT.

2. Because this wouldn’t be a complete list without a Star Trek reference, my favorite of the many “Red Shirt” t-shirts on offer:

1. And now, because I believe in saving the best for last, here is the Ultimate Movie Buff t-shirt. Spoilt. This shirt is the ultimate proof of my rule that t-shirts should force people to be in the know on movies to be Truly Awesome. This t-shirt is the ultimate test of that. Also, the graphic design on this kicks ass.

Here, have a close up so you can appreciate this better…

Do you have a favorite geeky movie t-shirt? Point me towards it. I’m always trying to expand my collection.

Ta,

Beth Matthews