Friday, February 27, 2009

Currently at 00% on the tomatometer…


Out in theaters today, Street Fighter: The Legend of Chun-Li is Capcom and 20th Century Fox’s latest attempt to reboot the Street Fighter film franchise.  The film wasn’t screened for critics (never a good sign), and with only 15 reviews currently on, not one critic deemed the film “FRESH”.

With all of the success that the release of Street Fighter IV generated, the movie could possibly salvage some kind of a decent box-office performance.  But if this movie goes down in history as a colossal failure like the original 1994 flick, then I have some advice for Capcom and any studios who hope to capitalize on the venerable video game franchise: STOP TRYING. 

Street Fighter is a wildly successful game franchise due to its tight controls and incredibly deep fighting gameplay.  The game’s storyline was never particularly fascinating (any movie about a crime syndicate that holds a massive fighting tournament will pale in comparison to Enter the Dragon), which is why I don’t think it translates to film very well.  The most popular face of the franchise, Ryu, is a loner who doesn’t say much, doesn’t have much charisma and is really only likable because he looks cool and he’s relatively easy to use.  Those aren’t really the characteristics of a starring movie role, so why do you think they threw Kristen Kreuk (mmm…) into a film about Chun-Li?

The 1994 animated film, Street Fighter II, was well-received, but I’m still not sure how popular that hand-drawn movie is without the infamous Chun-Li shower scene.  Yeah, that scene was really up there for me in terms of animated hotties, right along with Ariel’s seashell bra in Little Mermaid.

So here’s my final plea to all movie studios: Street Fighter just doesn’t play out well on film, especially American film where it’s just going to end up looking like a boring Action vehicle.  If you’re going to make a movie like that, it’s already been done in 1994, and that movie is probably better than anything else that will come out in the future.

It also had one of the greatest movie speeches of all-time:

“Greatest Moment in Cinematic History” indeed.

Sunday, February 22, 2009

To watch tonight: The OSCA...I mean, THE AMAZING RACE!!!

Television is an entertainment medium that has so much to offer to so many individuals. There are programs for those who want to dive head first into a fantasy world of superheroes and villains, shows that can teach scrubby college kids how to cook food as well as survive on a cheap budget, Snoop Dogg being a dad, and so much more.

I'm a huge advocate of TV, and I follow so many shows for seasons and seasons that it eventually becomes hard to keep it all bound together. There are many shows out there that people don't even bother watching because their story lines become far too complicated or they just can't dedicate the time to follow it week after week with their busy schedules.

But for those who can dedicate one hour on Sunday night to a television show, it should definitely be The Amazing Race. After fourteen seasons and a plethora of awards, this show brings together many teams of two and takes them on a race around the world for a million dollar prize. Along the way they reach challenges that must be completed, some individual and some as a team, eventually leading to a pit stop at the end.

The teams come in many combinations. This season we have a brother and sister team, two stuntmen, a father and son writing duo, a mom with her deaf son, and so much more. The majority of the fun in this show comes from the tension that develops between the teams. Not only are they racing for one million dollars, but they have to overcome both physical and psychological tasks. Seeing the relationships bloom week after week really gives a nice look into different human perspectives, and watching these teams work through the difficulties presented to them is both heartening and thought provoking.

If you haven't jumped along for the ride, now is a great time to catch on. Many of the teams this season are incredibly likable. My current favorites are Brad and Victora, an older (ages 52 and 47) married couple from Columbus, Ohio, and Amanda and Kris, a dating couple from San Diego (because I love my hometown). We're only two episodes in, so if you're free Sunday nights at 8, grab some dinner, sit on the couch and tune into CBS for this outstanding hour of television.

(and yeah I never watch the award shows)

Friday, February 20, 2009

To watch tonight: Late Night with Conan O’Brien THE FINAL EPISODE


Tonight marks the final episode of Late Night with Conan O’Brien.  On June 1, he’ll take over for Jay Leno in the 11:30 pm slot as the host of the Tonight Show.  Jimmy Fallon takes the reigns for Late Night starting March 2nd. 


In addition to tonight’s episode, I recommend watching all the episodes from the past two weeks on Hulu.  Every episode showed one of the hilarious on-location segments that Conan was famous for, along with various other highlights and best-of moments.

As a fan of late night television programming since I was a child (and no, I wasn’t just staying up to watch Real Sex on HBO…ok maybe I was), Conan’s 12:30 show was always something to look forward to.  I remember some of his early years being pretty rough, but once he found his groove, he was hard to top.  Over the past 10 years, I’d argue Conan’s show was more consistently funny than either Leno or Letterman’s 11:30 offerings.

As much as I enjoy Craig Ferguson, I’m afraid 12:30 in the morning will never quite be the same without Conan O’Brien. 

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

To play tonight: Street Fighter IV

Today Street Fighter IV was officially released. Thinking about studying tonight? Forget it, pick up your sticks and I'll see you on .... Playstation Network (ohhhhhh noooooo)

Monday, February 16, 2009

To watch tonight: No Reservations



I know a lot of you guys are fans of Anthony Bourdain: No Reservations.  Tonight’s episode at 10pm marks the first time in 5 seasons that Bourdain makes the trek to the Philippines.

The fact of the matter is, Filipino food is just not as hip as other Asian cuisine.  I think there was a point in time when Americans used to find sushi pretty gross.  Now, if you don’t enjoy raw fish on a block of rice, you are uncultured and definitely out of the loop on what good eatin’ is.

Anywhere in Southern California, you can find sushi restaurants, pho restaurants, Sam Woo, dim sum, Korean and Thai BBQ.  Filipino cuisine is harder to find.  Ever since I moved to Irvine, I haven’t had any Filipino food to eat except whatever I managed to make at home.   As far as I know, I have to drive at least 20 minutes to get some fried bangus or some KARE-KARE.  I can’t even imagine what it’s like for Nazer in Boston, that’s probably why he bothered learning how to make so many Filipino dishes at home.

The flavors and ingredients of Filipino cuisine are probably harder to agree with for the average American palette.  The flavors are dominated by sour (calamansi, vinegar and tamarind all over the place) and saltiness (throw bagaong and patis on everything you eat), and we consume some of the weirdest parts of the animal (tripe, fish heads, blood, etc).  Also, “healthy” isn’t the first notion that comes to mind when I think of Filipino food, but there are still some pretty good choices out there.  This isn’t too different from any other kinds of Asian food, every Asian culture has some pretty weird shit.  But I’m still disappointed to learn that most Americans don’t enjoy Filipino food beyond lumpia and tocino.

Here’s an excerpt about the episode in a recent interview with Bourdain:

How'd you find Filipino food culture?

I had some really good food there. I thought it was really interesting but hard to describe. A lot of the show was me floundering around and asking people why Americans have such a fuzzy image of the Philippines and Filipino food when there are so many Filipinos in this country. The show kind of becomes about Filipino identity: Who do Filipinos most identify with from their past? Americans? Chinese? Spanish? Is it Polynesian or Malay? It was something we kept hammering at as I ate my away across Cebu and Manila.

Hopefully, tonight’s episode of No Reservations will highlight the less-famous, but still delicious dishes of Filipino cuisine as well as capture the charming qualities of Filipino culture.  And hopefully Anthony Bourdain enjoys all of it with his signature wit and style.

[Travel Channel]

Saturday, February 14, 2009

CKR Caption Contest!


If a picture is worth a thousand words, than I am fucked.

This hapless photograph is from my most recent trip to Las Vegas, an unfortunate keepsake compliments of the '”Manhattan Express” roller coaster at the New York New York Hotel & Casino.

After the ride (piece of cake!), I remember getting juked by the camera, and my concerns became evident as the photo appeared across the monitor.

Of course, my fellow rider, Alexand aka Asswipe, did what any rational person would do, and bought the damn thing. Now I am forever immortalized alongside other homies who have failed in life.

Still, here’s your chance to compete in our very first caption contest. Whoever authors the best entry will be emailed their very own, $10 off coupon-code for!

Good luck, jerks.

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Under Construction


Pardon our dust.

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Awards Season Review Part 2: The Wrestler

Mickey Rourke in the Wrestler

Professional wrestling demands more from its athletes than any other sport or any other kind of “sports entertainment”. With a rigorous schedule of 3-4 live shows a week, there’s no off-season, no all-star break, and no unions. The stars of yesteryear are lucky to hold a stable job within the business, luckier if they can find success somewhere else. Otherwise, the “has-beens” who can no longer get a decent pop from the sport’s rabid fans fade into relative obscurity.

Darren Aronofsky’s The Wrestler takes a fictional look into the life of a former pro-wrestler who fell from stardom. And although the film is fiction, the story is rooted deeply in truth.

The Wrestler has the feel of a documentary, partly because of the camera-work, but also due to the realism of the wrestling portions (an oxymoron?). The backstage wrestling lingo, the pre-match preparations, and the actual wrestling scenes are all legitimate, and add a great deal of authenticity to the film.

Mickey Rourke stars as Randy “The Ram” Robinson, a Hulk Hogan-esque superstar from the 80’s who, twenty years later, fails to hold a steady job and finds himself wrestling in high school gymnasiums on weekends. Marisa Tomei plays Cassidy, a stripper whom “The Ram” befriends, and Evan Rachel Wood plays Stephanie, his estranged daughter.

The casting is excellent with Rourke as the lead, and Wood and Tomei in their supporting roles. The parallels to Rourke’s real life shines through his performance and it makes it that much better. Rourke’s scenes as The Ram in his “regular job” at a supermarket deli counter are some of his finest in the film; you see shades of the charisma and likability that made him a star, and ultimately you see the sad nature of his fall from grace.


The nature of the relationship between The Ram and Cassidy is beautifully imperfect, and serves as the arc around which the story develops. They are two individuals who share the misery of working in a business that doesn’t take kindly to old age and to watch their friendship develop is one of the more heartfelt parts of an otherwise sad film.

Mickey Rourke and Evan Rachel Wood in The Wrestler.

The more illustrative relationship of The Ram’s true character is the one he has with his daughter. Their exchanges do a great job of slinging the viewer back and forth between hating Rourke’s character for being such a terrible father while still feeling somewhat sorry for him.

One of the things that the film does well is capture that kind of complexity of the human condition. Nothing is ever really black and white, nothing is completely good or bad. For example, one moment, the viewer may find himself having no remorse for Randy “The Ram” as he pumps his body full of steroids, or goes on a late night binger. The next moment, when he finds himself amongst a group of handicapped old timers, you’ll feel sorry for a seemingly helpless victim to a ruthless business that once made him a star.


Even sadder than the film itself is its plot in the context of real life. Unfortunately, the story of Randy “The Ram” Robinson is something of a median compared to the lives of retired pro-wrestlers in the real world.

There are guys like Ric Flair, who still works for the WWE in his 60s, and the Rock, who makes boatloads of money as a star in Hollywood. On the other side of the spectrum you have guys like Brian Pillman (suicide), Kerry Von Erich (suicide), and Chris Benoit (double homicide, then suicide). Not to mention the countless many who died of drug overdose and the ones whose bodies have broken down from the beatings they put it through on the mat.

If I could describe The Wrestler in one word, it would be heavy. Heavy in the sometimes tumultuous scenes that Rourke has with Tomei and Wood, and heavy in the violence and drug use. The film’s intensity is off the charts; it’s a volatile combo of naked women, broken relationships, heavy drug use, and an extremely violent hardcore wrestling match.

There’s no doubt that the lives of pro-wrestlers outside of the ring is both tragic and fascinating, and The Wrestler captures both of those traits on film like a champion.

For Part 1 of the Awards Season Reviews, read Ray’s review of Milk.

Year of the Gentlemen… unless you’re Chris Brown


The early details of the story at Not so small talk.

Chris Brown fans are obviously in mourning right now, with the teenage heartthrob of millions of adoring girls and fanboys is facing serious allegations of assault that left his girlfriend/pop-star Rihanna at the receiving end of a brutal attack. While cases of domestic violence are never a joking matter, E! reported that C.B. may have paid tribute to his debut single “Run it!” that night.

According to a source close to the investigation, Rihanna made the 911 call to police after Brown "fled on foot" from the scene following the attack. Two officers from the LAPD Wilshire Division found Rihanna in Brown's rented silver Lamborghini "beaten really badly and hysterical."

Not sure how he’s going to dance his way out of this one. Despite being relatively young, 19-years-old in celeb years translates to being 30, and any defense revolving around C.B.'s youthful immaturity will probably not play well for a L.A. jury, especially with Rihanna being portrayed as a hapless victim.

cb_rihannaFans can only cross their fingers at this point and hope that his involvement in this ugly incident was really at the bare minimum. Otherwise, say goodbye to the pretty boy image and expect his next album to be full of jailhouse raps.


Monday, February 9, 2009

Your 2009 Grammy Award Winners

Here. CLICK ME I must say that there are no real surprises here, and that I don't agree with more than half of the winners, well actually I barely agree with any of the nominees, but hey who I am to judge, I only make and listen to music for a living.

And any Grammy list that has fuckin Duffy for a winner and not Sara Bareilles is just rubbish.

But Katy Perry performing in a fruit basket was cool I guess.

And finally, no, I didn't watch the show. I never watch the award shows, so you tell me, what were the best performances of the night so I can watch them.

Thursday, February 5, 2009

30 Rock is still on television


Oh how I love Tina Fey, and just the same, her show 30 Rock. I caught on to 30 Rock late in 2007 during its first season, and ever since I’ve been watching the show religiously.

Despite being critically acclaimed and winning almost every television award imaginable, from Emmys, Golden Globes, to SAG honors, 30 Rock has struggled miserably to capture ratings, which are vital to keeping a series alive for a next season. (After winning their first Emmy for “Outstanding Comedy Series,” Tina Fey made sure to thank the “dozens and dozens of viewers” during her acceptance speech. Hah!)

Just ask the sad, defeated fans of short-lived shows like Bionic Woman (1 season), Cavemen (also 1 season), or that ridiculous Friends spin-off Joey (2 seasons). Then again, why anyone would watch a show featuring Joey Tribbiani in the first place still troubles me. Even shows that should-of-been television classics, like Saved by the Bell: The College Years, lasted only 1 season before getting the axe due to low ratings. Poor Slater.

Now in its 3rd season, 30 Rock has slowly but surely, picked up the pace in ratings and has already been renewed by NBC for another season; its rise in popularity thanks in large part to the show’s guest star-power (i.e. Jennifer Anniston, Oprah, Salma Hayek) and of course, through the hard work of Ms. Fey. Likewise, Alec Baldwin, Tracy Morgan, and the rest of the ensemble cast are comedy gold.

Either way, I still recommend this show (Thursday nights at 9:30 PM) to anyone with a goofy sense of humor, and being a comedy series, it should be relatively easy to pick up.

Tonight’s episode also definitely looks like to be a keeper, especially with stud-actor Jon Hamm of Mad Men set to make a guest appearance as a romantic interest to Fey’s character, Liz Lemon. Salma Hayek also reprises her role.

Here’s a preview:

30 Rock – Episode: Generalissimo

"Sorry I smell like frosting, I just love to bake..."





That should be me!! WAHHHHH

Anyways, that ends my last, futile attempt to convince the world that 30 Rock is worth watching. If you do happen to give the show a try, I hope you enjoy it. If not, you’re probably not weird enough. (Really)

[Pregnant Cornbread]

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Super Bowl a victory for Steelers, fatasses


I saw a spot for this promo while watching the Super Bowl 43, although I was a bit skeptical at first (Just like Santonio Holmes’ game-winning “catch”... I kid Steelers fans! har har).

Fortunately, the ad was indeed legitimate, so if you happen to cruise by a Denny’s today, remember to stop by and treat yourself to a Grand Slam breakfast for only Free 99.

Unfortunately, I probably won’t be able to enjoy my own Grand Slam, seeing that the deal is only being offered during a ridiculous time slot of 6 a.m. to 2 p.m. Don’t they know people will be asleep? I mean c'mon, the sun will still be out.

Speaking of the Super Bowl, I give a half-ass congrats to the winners, the Pittsburg Steelers. What could of been a disastrous meltdown to the Arizona Cardinals turned into an exciting 4th quarter, capped off by the aforementioned touchdown “catch” cleverly pulled off by Holmes.


This photo is taken straight from and just so happens to be the only photograph they have that captures the game’s most crucial moment. And what do you know, his legs are cut off! Oh darn, that would of made an awesome picture. Either way, I’m sure the officials got the call right and Holmes did indeed get both of his feet in...

Obvious jealously aside, I am though, happy for their head coach, Omar Epps clone Mike Tomlin, who is one of the handful of Steelers that I’m actually a fan of.


Besides being a talented actor and a badass football coach, Omar Epps/Mike Tomlin might actually be related to the man himself, Charger Ladainian Tomlinson, seeing how their last names are so closely related to each other.

(Tomlin + son = Tomlinson/Son of Tomlin!)


And of course, anyone related to LT, even in the slightest bit, is more than likely a stud themselves.