Tuesday, September 20, 2011

An open letter to Netflix

Dear Netflix,

Hi. I'm sure you have no idea who I am. I'm just some guy who lives in Detroit and uses your service. I have for years actually. I've been a big fan since...well...2002 actually. That's a long time. Actually, I hadn't thought it was that long, but I suppose it has been. 2002 was my first free trial. I remember getting the snowboarding classic, Out Cold.

Sorry, I'm getting a warm wave of nostalgia here when I think about it.

Out Cold really has nothing to do with this though. What I'm getting at is that I'm a customer. I have been for years. Hell, 7dp has been fueled these past years by your service. And while 7dp has gone a bit on the back burner for me of late, my use of Netflix has not.

About a year ago I switched my plan around. I went from 3 discs to 1 disc and streaming. The problem was, I found myself using my 1 disc more than the streaming. I kept finding that the things I wanted to watch (TV shows mostly of late) just weren't available for streaming. And if what I want isn't available, then it doesn't matter what you're charging, does it? It's not a good deal for me. So, when you made the pricing change over the summer, I dropped the streaming service (since I didn't use it) and went to the two disc plan. It's worked out fine for me.

But now, I'm not going to be a Netflix customer anymore. Not because I decided I didn't want to use your service anymore, but because you decided I wasn't the kind of customer you wanted. You spend years building up brand loyalty amongst your users and then...what? What the hell is Qwikster? Seriously. It's a nonsense word that means nothing in regards to the business itself. It sounds like the name of an internet start-up that failed by 2005.

When a radio station switches formats, they can't air any of the old commercials that they sold. The reason being that all of that money was spent to advertise based on the old format, demographics and ratings. The sales staff then has the unenviable job of having to go out and sell the new format without any ratings information. This is essentially what you're doing here. You've flipped the format. Netflix is a known entity. Qwikster is not. You can say it's just like Netflix...but you can't back that up yet.

Last week you had a company that offered two services that complimented each other. Today, you have two companies that people aren't sure of. The people who only use the streaming service, they're unaffected. Every other customer though is. And the people that this will affect most are the ones who paid for both services. Now they have to pay to two sites and maintain two queues.

This just seems like a big step backwards, not a step forward.



Tuesday, August 09, 2011

Na Na Na Na Na Na Backlash!

I couldn't help but laugh this article on io9 this morning:

So wait. Is there really a Dark Knight Rises backlash?


Wait, why am I laughing you ask?

As you may or may not recall, I've had mixed feelings when it comes to the previous Batman films. In fact, I think that at one point, I referred to The Dark Knight as my least favorite movie of 2008.

And now, here we are, it's 2011, Batman 3 has barely started filming, and won't even be released for another year, and the internet hate machine is already starting to turn against it. Hey, internet, what happened to your hard on for Christopher Nolan and his Batman? HAHAHAHAHAHAAHA

Sunday, May 08, 2011

A Life in Movies Blogathon

Last year, you may remember Fandango Groovers Movie Blog did a Desert Island DVD Blogathon, and I participated! Well, they're back with another Blogathon, A Life In Movies.

Following the unexpected popularity of the Desert Island DVDs blogathon I organized last year I am inviting fellow bloggers to tell us what their favourite* movies are from each year of their life so far.  You can put as much or as little effort into you list as you wish. It could just be a list of movies, you may with to add a sentence or two about the movies or what they mean to you, you can brighten it up with images, posters or trailers. The choice is yours.
 Well, hells bells, that sounds fun. Fun enough for me to take some time out from blatant self promotion and join in!

So, I was born in 1980, and haven't seen a single movie that came out in 2011 so far. So, that establishes our range. So...lets start:


Welcome to the 80's!

1980The Empire Strikes BackLike I would put something ELSE in here!

1981Raiders of the Lost ArkTough one. I love Clash of the Titans and History of the World, Part 1...but I love Raiders just a little bit more!

1982Blade RunnerAnother tough one because The Thing was great, but Blade Runner has just had too big an impact on me.

1983Return of the JediJedi. Done.

1984Temple of DoomReal tough one here. This is the first year where I start remembering seeing a lot of different movies. I'm giving the nod to Indy because it's one I still love to watch.

1985Return of the Living DeadRe-Animator is a close 2nd.

1986Big Trouble in Little ChinaShut up, Mr. Burton! You were not brought upon this world to get it!

1987Evil Dead IIJaws 4 is, and I'm not kidding, a very close 2nd.

1988Young GunsDid you see the size of that chicken?

1989Indiana Jones and the Last CrusadeIt's my favorite of the three in fact.

Onward to the 90's!

1990Back to the Future: Part IIII might be the only person you know who says that this is their favorite of the 3.

1991T2Of course.

1992Encino ManIt's Pauly Shore's best work and you know it.

1993Jurassic ParkI don't even know what else came out this year.

1994ClerksJust for the sheer impact it had on me.

1995Johnny MnemonicWhat? We all know I love this movie. And while some amazing movies came out this year, if you put all of them on DVD in front of me, I would end up watching Johnny Mnemonic. I know I would!

1996Star Trek: First Contact/TrainspottingIt's a tie. One is my favorite Star Trek movie, the other my favorite Danny Boyle movie.

1997Grosse Pointe BlankThis just as easily could have been Event Horizon or The Fifth Element or Cube or The Game. In fact, if I swapped GPB out for any of those others, I would be just as comfortable/conflicted with my choice.

1998Zero EffectI really had to fight not to say Armageddon, as bad as it is, I really do like it.

1999Godzilla 2000This was the Godzilla movie that really got me into the series. For that reason, it barely beats out The Matrix.

Into a new century

2000SnatchThough Battle Royale would have been just as acceptable.

2001Session 9While it could have (and probably SHOULD have) been something else, I really do love this movie.

2002The Lord of the Rings: The Two TowersThis is one of my favorite movies of ANY year.

2003OldboyThis would have been my first exposure to Korean movies

2004Shaun of the DeadI hate not having Kung Fu Hustle here, but I can't

2005SerenityIt was almost Land of the Dead

2006Pan's LabyrinthI really REALLY wanted to put Slither here.

2007Hot FuzzNothing else even comes close.

2008Let the Right One InHellboy 2 was here until I remembered that this one came out in 08 and I saw it in SLC.

2009The Brothers BloomOnce again, it's just a movie that I love, regardless of year. Nothing else from 09 was going to come close.

The twenty...teens?

2010True GritI really didn't see many movies in 2010. I did see this, and enjoy it. Centurion would have been another good choice.

2011Dead WoodsOk, so it's the movie I was in. I know I said I'd get away from self promotion for the day...I lied. Oh well. http://www.deadwoodsmovie.com

* I was about to correct the spelling of favorite, but then it occurred to me that it must be a British site, and I will respect that particular cultural difference.

Thursday, May 05, 2011

Want a FREE copy of Dead Woods?

If you've been reading here (which if you're reading this, I'm just going to assuming...), or following me, or the blog, on Twitter, you may have heard that I was in a movie last year called Dead Woods. Well, that movie is finished, printed and ON SALE NOW.

That's not what I'm here about today though. I was very involved in this movie. I just can't be objective about it. I need someone who can be. So, I'm going to give away a copy of the movie*. That's right, I have a copy of Dead Woods that I want to mail to someone. So what do you need to do? Well, there's two things, 1) Have a movie blog and 2) send me a link to it before 11:59 on May 15t!. You can comment on this post, or you can send me and email at dreamrot @ 7dollarpopcorn.com! That's it! I'll pick a winner at random and
mail off a copy of the movie! It's a pretty simple little contest!

That's right. The copy I hold in my hand there could be YOURS!

*Right now, I only have one copy to give away, but if there are enough people who message me about it, I might try to get a couple more.

Monday, April 11, 2011

A Year in the Movies

It was one year ago today that we started to film Dead Woods. April 11, 2010. I was a last minute addition to the cast. We had a party on Saturday, the 10th. This was a calculated decision, as the first day of filming was supposed to be the day after a big party out in the woods. It was decided somewhere along the way that the best way to look like everyone was hungover would be for everyone to actually BE hungover. It was at this party that I went from potential extra to character with lines.

Someone had to drop out. Tom (Director) was looking for someone to take on his role. I volunteered. As I said, we were at a party. The goal was to appear somewhat hungover. There was some drinking going on. My judgement may have been impaired when I agreed to help.

Trooper that I am, I remembered the next morning and drove out to Jeremy's (Cast member/Set homeowner). At this point, I barely knew most of these people. It was a strange and frightening experience. On top of that, I hadn't done much acting since high school! Sure, a bit of voice stuff for the radio, but that's completely different to me.

Day 1 was a complete debacle. No one was on time. Well, a couple of us were. I was, Jeremy was. Erik (Cast member) and Kelcie (Cast member) were. We spent all day there. We shot a lot of footage, and we also spent a lot of time not shooting anything (this would be a recurring theme). We didn't use much, if any, of the footage from day 1. I mean that. We spent 10 hours out there (well, those of us who arrived on time), and we did more that contributed to the gag reel than the actual movie. We set up tents. Not once is anyone in a tent in the end.

Largely though, we hung out. We talked, we joked around. A year later and the cast of Dead Woods includes some of my closest friends, and these are people I barely knew a year ago. As frustrating as it tended to be at times making the damned thing, I don't regret a minute of it.

Last night, on the anniversary of our pre-movie flip cup party, we got together to record a commentary. Like much of the movie, it was fueled by Miller High Life. Afterwards, we had a bit of a bonfire. The further removed I get from the movie, the more I like it. And the further away we get from shooting it, the more I miss that. I'd do another one right now if I could.

Dead Woods is a finished movie now. There's nothing left to do but make DVDs and try to find ways for people to see it. You'll never see me even TRY to review it here. There's no way I could be objective enough.

Friday, April 08, 2011

Song of the Day: High Hawk Season by The Mountain Goat

For the record, I really like the new album, All Eternals Deck.

Friday, March 25, 2011

Today's phrase of the day: Bat-shit Wonderful.

Look, if you describe a movie as 'bat-shit wonderful', you will pique my interest.

Needless to say, Rubber has my interest piqued. I want to see it. And it's playing here at the end of next month. I must make this happen.

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

An evening spent listening to some of the worst music I could imagine

No, this wasn't even the worst I could imagine. I honestly never would have imagined anything as bad as some of this. The song titles were left out...mostly to prevent you from blaming me for hearing some of it. Hunt it down at your own peril.

Copied from Facebook. Formatting is a mess because I don't care enough to fix it.

This might be the worst song/video I've ever heard/seen...and it's taking everything I have not to inflict it on everyone I know.
43 minutes ago · Friends Only; Except: Work Types, Family · LikeUnlike ·

smacdonn: How can a video with dinosaurs and unicorns (whit LASER EYES) be this awful?
41 minutes ago · LikeUnlike
smacdonn: Seriously, it's like part rap, part Poison the Well...autotuned and full of Jesus.
39 minutes ago · LikeUnlike
smacdonn: New video. I'm not sure, but I think the 'chorus' in this dude's song is 'AAARRRGGGHH Come on, fuck a guy'. I'm not sure though.
33 minutes ago · LikeUnlike
smacdonn: ‎'i put mayonnaise on everything that's how i eat'
33 minutes ago · LikeUnlike
smacdonn: ‎'See that kid stealing? That was a thief'
32 minutes ago · LikeUnlike
smacdonn: New video. I never would have expected there to even be a market for autotuned screamo.
29 minutes ago · LikeUnlike
smacdonn: There is a dude in a pig costume. This still isn't worse than that first song. It needs more Jesus.
28 minutes ago · LikeUnlike
smacdonn: New video. Actual lyrics: Come and smile, don't be shy, touch my bum, this is life. I don't think I can do two more minutes of this one.
25 minutes ago · LikeUnlike
smacdonn: New video. Jesus fuck. I think the cast of Jersey Shore traveled back in time to 1998, became Canadian and started a boy band. Fuck. No.
23 minutes ago · LikeUnlike
smacdonn: Yup. Something to come out of Canada that I hate more than Nickelback. I kinda want to go back to the touch my bum song...this is awful. What was I thinking?
22 minutes ago · LikeUnlike
smacdonn: I tapped out. New video. Metal(ish) with autotuning and DDR? WHAT?
18 minutes ago · LikeUnlike
smacdonn: New video. WTF? You're seriously singing about whether to sit with your friends in the front seat of the car...or with your friends in the back seat? Fucking hell. Teen angst is a LOT different than when I was in high school
15 minutes ago · LikeUnlike
smacdonn: New video. Soulja Boy is terrible. There's nothing else I can say about this.
12 minutes ago · LikeUnlike
smacdonn: What's Hannenin? I'm moving on to something else. Seriously. What the crap? It sad that this is IMPROVEMENT.
10 minutes ago · LikeUnlike
smacdonn: I mean, this is almost listenable.
10 minutes ago · LikeUnlike
smacdonn: Almost. If you like listening to cds skip.
9 minutes ago · LikeUnlike
smacdonn: New video. Not sure, but I think I'm listening to people rap about mayonnaise. It's 20 pence more.
8 minutes ago · LikeUnlike
smacdonn: New video. Dear 'musicians' (and I use the term very lightly), not EVERYTHING sounds better autotuned all crazy.
5 minutes ago · LikeUnlike
smacdonn: Your rented Lamborghini does not impress me sir.
4 minutes ago · LikeUnlike
smacdonn: The 'rapper' reminds me of every upper middle class white kid I've ever seen trying to be hard core.
3 minutes ago · LikeUnlike
smacdonn: New video. MORE AUTOTUNE.
about a minute ago · LikeUnlike
smacdonn: Autotuned singing about Hannah Montana wearing your jeans? Really? I'm done. I quit. I don't ever want to hear anything new again. Seriously. I'm locking down iTunes. I'm done. I quit.

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Song of the Day - Winds of Change by Fitz & the Tantrums

I've been on a bit of a Fitz & the Tantrums kick the past couple of days. They played here in Detroit a couple of weeks ago. It was a free show, but I didn't go. I was actually downtown that night, just someplace else. I went to the Red Wings game (which we lost!). I could have gone to the show after the game, but a friend of mine said it was pretty packed and they may not have been letting people in at that point. So, sadly, I did not see them.

Sunday, February 13, 2011

Song of the Day: Howlin for You by The Black Keys

I wish this were a real movie.

Thursday, February 03, 2011

Song of the Day - Adultery by The Extra Lens

I picked up The Extra Lens - Undercard - on Amazon today. I'm not going to like, it's the best album you'll find for $3.99 today. By far!

Tuesday, February 01, 2011

On travel and breweries

I really meant to write about this a couple weeks ago. Like, right around the time it happened. And really, only because it was something to talk about.

See, many people will tell you that popcorn goes best with movies. I tend to disagree. I am rather popcorn neutral. I am popcorn ambivalent. Simply stated, popcorn does nothing for me. I can take it or leave it. In fact, when I was at the Burton Theatre last week, I did leave it. And it would have been free! Of course, they had also just run out, and I would have had to wait 10 minutes and that's just too long to wait for a bag of popcorn.

This leads to the natural question, if I'm popcorn neutral, than what does go best with a movie? I'm glad you asked, see, there's one thing that just goes perfectly with movies in my world, beer. This is why I have lately taken the opportunity to talk more about beer around here. Beer and movies just go great together. Especially the kind of movies I like to watch. If you're watching something like Chupacabra Terror without a beer nearby, you're missing out on half the point.

Basically, all of this is to set up a story. See, I collect pint glasses. Most are from breweries and restaurants. One of the first glasses I picked up was on eBay.

Not my actual glass. Just a picture I stole from Amazon.
In fact, it would be years before I ever tried Arrogant Bastard Ale. I was at Slow's in the Corktown neighborhood of Detroit when I first tried it. Since then, I've tried a few of Stone Brewery's beers. They're good, but I can't drink a lot of them. They tend to be pretty strong, both in flavor and alcohol content!

Back to the present. A couple weeks ago, I was heading out to an Indian Reservation outside of San Diego, CA. And what town would I be passing through? Escondido. And what's in Escondido? Stone Brewery and Stone World Bistro. On top of all that, it would be a Monday, and that means Meatless Monday's at the Bistro. I was in.

It was a beautiful Southern California day. The kind that they rub in the face of those of us living in places that get cold and snow. Sunny, 70ish degrees, not a cloud to be seen. If I had to describe it in a single word, perfect is the only one that comes to mind. The building itself is a bit off of the beaten path, and unmarked. There's little about it to tell you that this is the place you're looking for. There's no indication that there is a restaurant or brewpub here.

You have to take a chance and assume that that is the door you're looking for. Once inside, however, you're greeted by the brewery store where you can buy shirts and glasses and belt buckles and hats and...well, you get the idea.

Off to the side is the bistro. It's primarily outside seating. Which works in SoCal, I suppose. They asked me where I wanted to sit, I said I was from Detroit and it's so nice outside that it would be a shame to be indoors. They sat me outside at the bar.

I ordered the Levitation Ale. An amber that, as far as I can tell, is not readily available in my area. For my meal, I ordered the Mac 'n Beer Cheese.
Mac 'n Beer Cheese
Mike's Beer Cheese makes classic mac 'n cheese classier. And more importantly, much tastier. Made with Mike's Stone Smoked Porter & Garlic Beer Cheese with sun dried tomatoes, and basil.
It was as good as it sounds. Overall, it was a nice little excursion to a brewery I wouldn't normally get to visit. And it kind of brought everything full circle since it was a glass from Stone that started my pint glass collection. And no, I did not buy another glass while I was there.

Sunday, January 30, 2011

You are tearing me apart, Lisa!

As I previously mentioned, I went to the Burton Theatre on Friday to see The Room. 

It was, without question, one of the greatest movie going experiences I've ever had.

To start with, the theatre itself is in the auditorium of an old school in Midtown Detroit. The school isn't really in use anymore, at least not as a full time school. It's worth noting here that I love Detroit. All those bad things you've heard? None of them came from me. This is, without question, my city. And if there's something interesting going on, I'm in. Though, I will admit that I skipped out of the chicken races last summer, and I'm still bummed about it, but that's a story for some other time.

It goes without saying that, thanks to the internet, I knew what The Room was. I'd seen clips and read reviews. My friends and I knew it would be bad. Needless to say, we decided drinking was going to be a good idea. We brought small bottles and flasks in an effort to be discrete. This effort was all for naught, however, as we watched many people bringing in fifths and six packs.

The Room itself was as awful as anticipated, but the real fun in a movie like this comes from the crowd you see it with. It's a movie meant to be watched with many people yelling at the screen. There's no way it would be an enjoyable experience sitting in your living room watching it. It's too awful for that. You need an audience of people yelling 'Who the hell are you?' at the people randomly making out on the couch. You need the people cheering on the pan across the Golden Gate Bridge. You need people throwing plastic spoons at the screen. Without that, you're just watching a bad movie.

Plan 9 From Outer Space is a bad movie. Death Bed: The Bed That Eats is a bad movie. The Room is a terrible movie that belongs in the discussion of Worst Movie Ever with the likes of Plan 9 and Death Bed. In the right setting though, The Room is a hell of a lot of fun.

Friday, January 28, 2011

Oh, hi Mark

When you're sitting around later, wondering what I'm up to tonight (don't lie to yourself, we both know you will be), just think of two words: The Room

The acting, the writing, the unattributed quotes in the trailer...I can not be more excited about going to see this. Also noteworthy is that this will be my first excursion to the Burton Theatre in downtown Detroit. It used to be a school, now it's a theatre, how can you go wrong?

Friday, January 21, 2011

Song of the Day - Cameras by Matt and Kim

I think I've done this as the song of the day before, but there's an actual video for it now. This isn't what I set out to post today, but it's all I've been able to do. It's been a long day. More after some sleep. Lots and lots of sleep (and possibly sake bombs).

Thursday, January 13, 2011

5 years and I'm still here

Imagine for a moment that it's three days ago. January 10th. Do you know what January 10th was? This is a fairly serious question. I don't expect you to know the answer, don't worry.

January 10th was 7dp's 5th birthday!

Wow. Thanks, Al. That's really nice of you.

Right. Of course you do.

Wow. All this time away and you can't even come up with new material. Thanks for stopping by though, Al. It was good seeing you. Kind of.

It's weird to think about, isn't it? 5 years. That's almost forever in internet time. Here I am though, still going. Sure, I'm not as prolific as I used to be. I can't imagine something like FILMuary happening again (though it was an amazing amount of fun! Seriously. 28 movies in 28 days and across multiple states!), but I'm still sad I didn't do Shark Week last year. I've participated in a few blogathons and even switched blogs with 1416 and Counting for a day (THAT was fun. I want to do something like that again.)

And, last year, despite the record low number of postings (and even lower number of actual movie related content), I thought was a fun year. I added the Song of the Day to the rotating list of infrequent features. There was the previously mentioned blog-switcheroo. I even proved to everyone that I can't draw! And on top of all that, I was in a fucking movie. Well, not a FUCKING movie. A horror movie! Dead Woods.

So what does 2011 hold? I don't know. I have some ideas. I want to bring Shark Week back for sure. I've been considering talking about beer and the brewing of more often (it's an interesting subject to me), this may lead to sort of a Brew & View type feature, but we'll see what happens. There will probably be more whoring for Dead Woods, especially once the DVD is done. I may even try to give away a few copies. Basically, I expect 2011 to be a lot like 2010. A few reviews, a lot of nonsense and generally expanding the focus some more.

Oh, and more shitty movies!

Song of the Day - Night by Night by Chromeo