Wednesday, February 26, 2014

The Parting Glass

Not sure what clicks led me to this video for Tullamore Dew Whiskey, but what a lovely find. It has so many things that appeal to me; rain, moss, thin guys in hats, and a very beautiful tune. I want to buy a bottle whiskey and watch moss grow in a church cemetery.

I get cold chills watching this performance.

Yet another great whisky advert video featuring Robert Carlyle of "Trainspotting" and "The Full Monty" fame.

Monday, February 24, 2014

Mungo Jerry - In the Summertime

Ok, so technically it's not "the summertime", but…man, we could do with some outdoor green-ness!

Any time I hear this song, I just smile and think about green grass, a summer sun just a blazin', windows down….cruising. I had no idea it was a British band; thank you internets.

The band seems to be having such a good time. I must admit it's a pretty nice video considering it was shot in 1970. It captures the moment perfectly.  I dig the clothing - the banjo player has on a killer pair of boots.

Monday, February 10, 2014

The Crash Reel

I've been stoked to watch The Crash Reel since I read about it in Outdoor magazine last year which had a great article about how common TBIs are and how these athletes aren't covered by insurance. Some folks move in with their families for recovery and some folks never leave. Everyone should see this documentary.

While preparing for the 2010 Olympics and poised to beat rival Shaun White, Kevin Pearce suffers a massive head injury. With the help of his fantastic family, Kevin attempts to retrain his fragile brain and   rebuild his dramatically altered post-TBI life. His family is just amazing. The movie isn't just about Kevin. One of the highlights of the film is when his brother David shares his frustration of having to live with Down syndrome. David is very frank with Kevin at the family meeting concerning Kevin returning to snowboarding. 

One of the most disturbing scenes to watch is when Kevin and his mom visit Trevor Rhoda, who is currently into TBI #2. I did a little surfing to find out his history. It turns out some of his relatives clearly had no clue how fragile the TBI brain becomes. It's mind blowing. He was literally back out doing what he did pre-TBI in less than a year post-TBI. His initial recovery was so quick, his family/friends must've thought it was green light for all actively. We learn with Kevin that the post-TBI brain cannot sustain any sort of jarring let alone another injury. The doctor also shows Kevin the scars in his brain tissue.

It is heart wrenching watching Rory Bushfield talk about Sarah Burke. Sarah died in January, 2012 due to an accident in the same half pipe in Park City. I've looked at a few videos of the two of them together in interviews; they are so happy and clearly they are the each other's soul mate. 

This is the best film - not just best documentary - I've seen since Medora. Warning: You won't care much for Shaun White after watching this. His exclusive for-me-only Red Bull half-pipe was always a problem for me, but when you see what he does when Kevin starts winning competitions, it will really turn you off of the Flying Tomato.

Addendum: I could not get this film out of my head, so I watched it again. Honestly, I could pop it again and watch it a third time; it's that good. Something else that's been bugging me - Shaun White's performance in the Sochi Olympics. You know he must've planned on pulling out some kick ass tricks. I would like to think that the popularity and reality of this film is gnawing at him. He admits to about 9 concussions in the film. I think he's attached himself to "what if" and can't shake it off. 

Sunday, February 9, 2014

Giants and Toys

I just adore late 50's early '60's Japanese movies. Giants & Toys  is one of those timeless gems worth taking out of the box for a polish.  Struggling lower management staff @ World candy manufacturing company needs a fresh face to launch the very competitive, cut-throat, caramel line.

Complete with rotten teeth, their small village discovery Kyoko becomes a media sensation. 

This film is a blast! I love the peek inside Japanese life in 1958. The tongue in cheek political machinations and the win or die candy wars will have you laughing out loud. 

Tuesday, February 4, 2014

Beauty is Embarrassing

Beauty is Embarrassing is a documentary based on the life/career of artist Wayne White. Wayne was not only one of the set and puppet designers for Pee Wee's Playhouse and won three Emmys for his work, he was also the voice for many characters. He won a Billboard award for best Art Direction for Peter Gabriel's "Big Time" video and later designed the sets for the award winning Smashing Pumpkins "Tonight, Tonight" video.

His wife is writer and artist Mimi Pond; I cannot imagine the dinner conversations. Their two kids are artists too. Wayne had it all and walked away but could not be happier. This is the story of working your way to top and realizing it wasn't quite what you wanted. If you are interested in art in anyway, you must see this. Even if you aren't, you will laugh out loud as Wayne explains how he came up with his ideas and how he had no clue what the heck he was doing.

He spends his days taking thrift store art and painting clever/witty phrases on them.  Warning: if you watch this documentary you are going to want to move down the road from Wayne and his neighbors.