I was on the fence about whether I should take G to see this movie or not. I didn't realize that it was rated "R" when I saw all the trailers about it. Didn't really pay attention until I went to look up the showtimes and saw the rating right below the title. But then I thought that I recalled my first "R" rated movie was when I was 10 so he would certainly be okay at 12. So it was a guys' night out as me and my two sons checked it out.
"Zero Dark Thirty" is based on the true story of the raid that killed Bin Laden. It goes behind the scenes starting with the events after 9/11 that slowly led up to the mission that would eventually take out the Most Wanted man in America. The movie details why it was so painstaking to track down the most popular fugitive ever. So just ignore the fact that it's nearly three hours long. They had over a decade of history to
cover in that time period.
This is now the second movie I've seen where they've addressed the actual events of 9/11 would nothing more than audio while the screen was completely dark. I think the first one I noticed that did that was Michael Moore's flick "Farenheit 9/11". I wasn't a fan of that concept even then. Was it done because the images were too gruesome to show again? Or for some type of dramatic effect? In this particular instance it worked. Namely because some of the audio they played here was audio I had never heard before. It was rather chilling and set the mood perfectly as the opening scene.
Let me say now that as far as the whole torturing thing goes, I don't have any problem with that at all. If we have 'detainees' that can provide information to capture criminals that are responsible for killing American citizens then do whatever it takes to get that information. I could care less if it impedes on their rights. It was interesting to see here some of the tactics that were used to get that information. I would have still liked to see more of the different techniques used. But I guess we can't show all of our cards.
The pace of the movie didn't drag on like some dramas that length (157 minutes to be exact). There were never any dry moments. Every scene was purposeful as it connected to the next doing an even better job of building up to the finale you know is coming. And the finale itself was still something that seemed too incredulous to believe. It was a mission that you would have sworn was a Hollywood production had it not really happened. To think that our Navy SEALs pulled off a mission like that under those circumstances without a single casualty is a huge testament to how extraordinary our armed forces are.
As for the "R" rating, I honestly have to say I've seen MUCH worse R-rated films. There was one scene where they showed a man's bare behind but besides that there was no nudity. There really wasn't that much cursing. There was easily more violence in "The Avengers" than they had here. Although there was clearly more blood in this one. But still, this could have easily gotten a PG-13 rating.
There wasn't a single actor who didn't do an amazing job in "Zero Dark Thirty". You
would expect that from a film with a high-powered cast; however, there
wasn't a single big name star in this one. The only actor who I
remotely recognized was Chris Pratt from "Parks and Recreation" who only
had a small part as one of Navy SEAL Team Six. And even seeing him in a
role completely contrary to his clueless character from that sitcom was
further proof of how great the acting was. Director Kathryn Bigelow
once again did an outstanding job of taking a very machissmo subject and
bringing an emotional factor to it that everyone can appreciate.
That title can sound a little..um...different if you read it the wrong way. Maybe folks shouldn't have their mind in the gutter then it would sound just fine. They would immediately know who I'm talking about with this latest honorarium before I even get to the name.
TV actor Conrad Bain died of natural causes in California Monday night. He was 89-years-old.
There's not a child of the 70s or 80s around that doesn't remember Bain as Phillip Drummond, the wealthy widower dad on the sitcom "Diff'rent Strokes". His adoption of Arnold (Gary Coleman) and Willis (Todd Bridges) kicked off a comedy that would be a staple of our 80s childhood. Not to mention making everyone on the show famous for years to come.
I always wondered how Bain handled seeing his tv children fall apart before his eyes as they struggled with no longer being child stars. Both Bridges and Dana Plato (who played the daughter, for those who are uninformed) struggled with drug problems. Plato would get the worst of it as she delved into porn and eventually died from a drug overdose. All the while those two stayed in the news, you never heard about him attempting to intervene to be a mentor who could hopefully steer them on the right path. But then again, who knows what he was dealing with himself. It was just interesting that he was never in the limelight after the show like all the kids were.
Honestly, I thought he had already passed away years ago. Probably even before Dixie Carter (who played his wife on the show for a couple of seasons) did years back. It would have made sense since he already looked old while he was on the show. And that was decades ago. Apparently he just looked old for his age. He nearly outlived them all though. Only Bridges is left now. Considering he's the same age as me, I hope he holds on for quite a while. Maybe even longer than Bain which would be a nice achievement.
I was just thinking that it was rather odd that we're this far into the new year without any notable celebrity deaths. And by "notable" I mean celebrities that I would actually recognize. Then I came across this one that I missed last nearly two weeks ago.
Character actor Ned Wertimer, known to fans of "The Jeffersons" as the doorman Ralph Hart passed away January 2 from complications stemming from a fall he sustained in his Burbank home in late November. He was 89-years-old.
I saw in his bio that Hart had a wide variety of appearances in other shows all of us 70s babies know. Joints like "WRKP in Cincinnati" and "Mork and Mindy". The latter is rather interesting because dude did rather favor the dad in that show. I first thought that was him too. But I'm sure that cat passed away long ago and it was yet another character actor that I missed.
I always hoped as "The Jeffersons" came to a close that we would learn that Ralph the doorman was actually loaded. Mainly from all the extra tips he fleeced from all the tenants in the building. And perhaps he even had a penthouse in that same building as a result of all the loot he had hoarded. Did "The Jeffersons" even have a series finale? Regardless, they certainly missed the boat on that one. I would still like to think that's how the Ralph character faded off into the sunset.
The thing about these type of passings is they're hard to pinpoint. The
folks that aren't the big named stars never got much pub even when
their show was popular. Therefore, when they eventually fade out of the
limelight...and even pass away...it's with little fanfare. No telling
how many more like these I've missed over the years. Glad I caught this one.
Enough is enough already. I was going to vent on The Book and/or even Twitter about this, but then I remembered that's the entire reason I have this blog.
Why is it that everytime we (as a country) experience a major tragedy there has to be some new conspiracy behind it? It's almost as if people have nothing better to do so they have to read into every little thing in order to provide an alternate explanation as to why the horrific event happened. Sometimes even inventing facts of their own to prove their point.
The latest example of this was the Sandy Hook murders. 20 innocent children killed. The bodies didn't even have a chance to get cold before the conspiracy theorists started chiming in about how it was all rigged. How it was all a set-up done so that our government would have an excuse to start enacting more gun control laws. How our government intentionally killed children just so they could get some legislation to go through.
It first started getting out of hand when 9/11 took place. People are still saying that our government not only allowed those planes to hit their targets, but then also helped some of the destruction by setting off explosives planted in the Twin Towers. The rationale that time was it was done so that the government could take away some of our rights with all that Homeland Security legislation. So basically, our government killed over 3,000 defenseless American citizens just to get a few laws passed. Yeah...that sounds about right.
Certain people are going to always find a conspiracy behind something no matter what happens. No matter how much evidence there is to the contrary. They just thrive on the feeling of being contrary. Quite honestly, I don't know about anyone else but it gets annoying. I know I really have no one to blame but myself for even entertaining it. All I have to do is not read the links. However, I always find myself being nosy and that's what I get.
Oh...and don't you DARE try to prove them wrong and/or call them crazy. That just means you're blind to what is going on in the world around you. That you believe everything you see in the media because you have no mind to think for yourself. That you were not smart enough to figure out the truth behind the whole cover-up while they were.
So, if I'm understanding all of the conspiracy theorists correctly, 9/11 was done so that the government could take away our rights. Sandy Hook was done so that they could take away our guns...well...everyone else's guns since I don't have any. I suppose our govement was also behind Hurricane Sandy and that was done to take away our insurance, huh? Sounds a little ridiculous? Exactly.
Forget New Year's resolutions. Those are so passé. What we need to do instead is just keep it real. Let's face it..with every new year there are some things that need to be changed. Not necessarily resolutions, just getting things right while fixing some wrongs. That's how I came up with this list. Those things that we need to see less and more of in 2013. And when I will tell you know that in 99% of the cases where "less" is mentioned, I actually mean "no more".