Conversations with my 2 year old. Brilliantly shot and highly entertaining. A must for any parent!

My wife recently found this outstanding series of shorts floating about Youtube. They feature discussions between a father and his 2 year old daughter, re-enacted with a full-grown man in her stead. This creates a superb tension that helps highlight the often times surreal situations we find ourselves in as parents with young children.

Enjoy!

Spartan Ops

The original Halo came out just as I was starting to get deep into the commitments of my first real job. I enjoyed spending my bachelor evenings with a buddy screaming at each other as we would toss plasma grenades down the hallways to see if we could make them stick to some baddies before reveling in the satisfying thud as the glowing baseballs went off. Real life has a tendency to get in the way of such activities, though, and I soon found myself neck deep in work. Since my buddy was the one that owned the Xbox, and I didn’t even have a TV, the investment to get up to carrying on my interest in Halo seemed to be a pretty high barrier to entry. As the franchise blossomed, it all but faded from my memory.

343 Industry’s series of short videos titled Spartan Ops has sparked my interest anew. It is a well-shot, fast-paced miniseries that is worth getting into for any science fiction fan. Although there are clearly bits for which I had no knowledge of the evidently deep background lore that has developed over the game’s three subsequent iterations, I was still able to enjoy it deeply.

The videos are available on Youtube, but I have embedded them all here, if anything to make it easier for me to go back to watch it again in the future.

While I’m at it, I might as well include the Halo 4 Story, which has been stitched together to form a single continuous clip. It has helped me fill in many of the blanks. Ideally, this should be watched first if you haven’t diligently been playing Halo.

Spartan Ops 1

Spartan Ops 2

Spartan Ops 3

Spartan Ops 4

Spartan Ops 5

Spartan Ops 6: Scattered

Spartan Ops 7: Invasion

Spartan Ops 8: Expendable

Spartan Ops 9: Key

Spartan Ops 10: Exodus

Spartan Ops 11: Exodus Conclusion

And to top it all off, here’s the preview for Halo 5, which now makes much more sense to me (and still looks awesome!)

Food for thought on overconsumption

This profound clip from Samsara will captivate you and make you consider the titanic effort needed to feed the growing human population. It is a powerful statement from Ron Fricke who also made Baraka. The six minutes you invest here could help change your perspective on things.

You can find more potent videos at filmsforaction.org.

A great primer on Film Noir lighting from FilmakerIQ.com

Many thanks to my brother for finding this primer on the basics of lighting film noir by filmmakerIQ.com.

There are 92 other videos on the site at this time, with more being regularly added, so if you’re a movie buff, it will be worth your time to take a wander down there.

I hope Pacific Rim signals more ginormous robot movies on the way

Ginormous robots. Check.

Titanic monsters. Check.

Sweet visual effects. Check.

Pacific Rim has all the makings of  a brilliant summer blockbuster. Hopefully the script will be up to the challenge of complementing the flashy visuals, but when we take a moment to honestly assess this kind of movie, there’s some expectation of switching the brain machine to “off” and doing some healthy suspension of disbelief to enjoy this kind of movie.

A few thoughts about the trailer:

1. Mr. Del Toro and his concept artists must be big fans of Warhammer 40K’s Tyranids.

The Hive Tyrant’s cousins got big parts in the movie.

Games Workshop: inspiring terrifying creatures everywhere.

2. If a giant robot movie with no pre-existing fan base can make it big, and I certainly hope so for this movie, then it suggests that it is time to bring out the movie that I’ve been waiting for years to see produced: Mechwarrior.

Rolling thunder. In space. With massive dropships. And energy weapons. 100% awesome and then some. Image source: http://shimmering-sword.deviantart.com/art/Unseen-Moon-367110033?q=favby%3Amaxshields%2F55292083&qo=65 He’s an awesome artist. Check him out.

My giddy-o-meter jumps a couple notches at the thought.