I caught the 1973 classic Al Pacino movie Serpico on HDNet Movies a week ago. I won’t say it is the greatest movie ever, but I can see why it is regarded as a classic.

The movie tells the story of Frank Serpico’s pretty much personal crusade against the corruption in the New York Police Department in the 1970s. Since he is an honest cop surrounded by officers taking bribes, he has to worry about the people backing him up as much as he does the criminals he’s chasing.

Pacino gives a classic performance, and I would expect nothing less from him though. The movie is a classic cop movie and if you haven’t seen it, you should make an effort to watch it. Parts brought back memories of the classic TV show Barney Miller, but unlike the TV show, this isn’t a comedy. It is deadly serious.

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Evinrude’s Website

If you jump on over to Evinrude’s website, on their main page they have a little flash video that at the end, if you watch closely, shows the world record pyramid being pulled off the dock and then a shot of Jerry Wesner (Mad-City Ski Team’s triple rig driver) showing some love to the engines.

I browsed through some more of their website, watching some testimonial and hole shot videos, but didn’t see any other pyramid shots.

Still waiting to stumble on the infomercial on TV, but haven’t seen it yet. I did find this clip, which I’m guessing came from the infomercial on YouTube though.


And if you want to read an interesting discussion about outboard motors, go here. Just some of the poster’s pictures make it worth while. Although they do mention the infomercial, they don’t mention the show skiing portion of it. Too bad.

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Drunk Cartwheels

If you’ve ever had the chance to watch someone who is drunk to the point of stumbling instead of walking try to do a cartwheel, be sure to watch. It is very entertaining. Luckily, he didn’t injure himself.

If someone has a picture or video of it, let me know. I’ll put it up here.

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Winter Wonder Land

It’s been nearly two months since my last water ski run and right now it looks like it’ll be two months till my next run. Well at least in the state of Wisconsin. I’m contemplating a trip south to get some sets in.

The weather this winter has been pretty mild. If I had been ambitious, I should have managed to get a run in during December. We had highs in the 40s and low 50s. It would have taken a little work, but it should have happened. Now, it probably isn’t going to happen anytime soon. Last Monday we received a fair amount of snow and today we’re receiving even more. Here’s a picture of the current conditions.

As you can tell, it is starting to pile up. Probably about 6 inches out there, most of from today. If you look closely you can ski that the tiny little trees in my backyard are nearly buried. Looks like ski season is a couple months away yet.

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The Hitcher

I saw The Hitcher on Friday, a remake of the 1986 movie of the same name. If you aren’t sure of the plot of the movie, or don’t know what it is about. It can be summed up as “Don’t pick up a stranger on the side of the road.”

The movie stars Sean Bean, famous for playing Boromir from the Lord of the Rings movies, as the hitchhiker you don’t want to meet. He’s just creepy from the get go. It also stars Sophia Bush who although she’s been a few movies and a lot of TV shows, the only movie or show in the list that I recognized was Van Wilder, and I have no idea who she was in that movie. Finally, it also stars Zachary Knighton who I’ve never heard of.

Now back to the movie. Not a whole lot I can say about it. Pretty typical horror type movie. Not really a good movie, but you’ll get what you expect out of it. It’ll make you jump a few times and you’ll leave never wanting to pick up a hitchhiker ever. If you like horror movies, you’ll probably enjoy it, but you can very likely wait till you can see it on DVD. It’ll probably be on DVD in a couple months.

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Run, Lola, Run

Finally caught the movie Run, Lola, Run. It was one that I wanted to see when it was out theaters back in 1999, but just never made it. Well, I saw it was going to be shown on HDNet so I recorded on my HD DVR (which I love). I watched a week ago on Saturday between the Badger B-Ball & Hockey games.

Everyone has seen a movie or TV show where a character needs to get from point A to point B in certain period of time and everything has to go just right for the person to make it. Well, this movie is just that premise.

In your best Forrest Gump voice… “Lola was runninggg.”

That, in a nutshell, is the story. Seems very simple, make you wonder how it could even add up to a movie. Here’s the kicker… it makes for a very good movie.

What few characters there are, are all very interesting. The story, although simple, keeps you captivated. This is one of the better movies that I’ve seen lately. It isn’t anywhere near the quality of The Departed, but it is better than most of the stuff that comes out.

The techno soundtrack that backs the movie is good to. There is one song that is played throughout a lot of the movie, I believe it is called Wish, actually reminded me of the Pearl Jam song Wishlist, but with a definite techno vibe to it. The kicker is Franka Potente, who stars as Lola, also sings on most of the songs. She was also in the Bourne Identity and Bourne Supremacy.

If you like your movies a little different and don’t mind subtitles, check out this movie.

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The Secret Spot [water skiing movie]

I posted about Soul, a barefooting movie a while back. Well here is a water skiing movie called The Secret Spot. The trailer looks pretty slick.

Basically, they took a camera crew down to a spot on some isolated river, brought some skiers, footers, wakeboarders, and hydrofoilers and let them tear it up in front of the cameras on the glass calm water. You can find the list of all the athletes in the movie over at IMDB.

Here’s the trailer.

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This movie falls at the other end of the spectrum from Blood Diamond. But like Blood Diamond, this movie is also based on a true story.

For those of you who don’t know and didn’t pick up on it from the trailer, this movie is about a crocodile in Africa. A very large crocodile. The trailer calls the croc a serial killer. 300 victims probably qualifies it as one.

It is hard to say that this movie is good, it isn’t. But for those looking for a popcorn horror flick that will make you jump a couple times and laugh at many inappropriate spots, this movie is worth adding to your Netflix queue or watching sometime in an unedited fashion.

It has a lot of good lines such as “If I have to stuff you up my ass to get you through customs, you’re coming back to America.”

I won’t go into many details about the movie, I don’t want to ruin what there is of the story. But it does star the guy who played John Doe and plays Lincoln Burrows in Prison Break, Dominic Purcell. And in probably a bit of embellishing the truth, there is a scene where the croc, name Gustave, could probably run down a horse, completely unbelievable.

But I did do some searching on the web to see if the inspired by a true story is legit. I found this article on National Geographic that contains many of the elements of the movie. So the movie isn’t complete fiction.

Here’s the trailer:

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Blood Diamond

I saw the movie Blood Diamond (official site) a few days ago at the local theater. Admittedly, I’m not a fan of Leonardo. He’s a good actor, I just don’t really care for him. In this movie, he was good, very good, cheesy accent and all.

The movie’s story revolves around conflict diamonds. Diamonds that are mined by what amounts to slaves, sold by warlords with the profits going to buy weapons. It shows that about the only people involved in this process that aren’t guilty of something are the slaves that are mining the diamonds. Everybody else from the smugglers to the diamond buyers that aren’t even in Africa are guilty of sponsors in the acts of terrors committed and wars over the rights to mine the shiny little rocks. These warlords brainwash children with drugs and alcohol, turning them into little soldiers that aren’t even really aware of what they are doing.

If life was anything like what the movie portrayed, one has to wonder if Sierra Leone would have turned into an early version of Iraq if the diamonds were oil instead.

Back to the movie… the story they came up with to set in this time period is very interesting and keeps you interested in the characters and events in the film. While Leo plays a character that is all about him, Jennifer Connelly is the complete opposite and plays a reporter that is trying to change the world with her words. The third major character in the film, Solomon, was played by Djimon Hounsou, someone I’ve never heard of. He does a phenomenal job as the diamond mine slave.

Overall, the movie was very good. It was a little long, the story probably could have been tightened up a little bit to shave maybe 10 minutes of the 160 minute run time. But it was time well spent. I was entertained and made aware of some recent history that was drowned out by the garbage being reported about Monica Lewenski. I was aware of the blood diamonds, but now I know a bit more about the reality, or at least the portrayed reality, of the conflict that occurred in Africa in the 90’s.

For more information about blood or conflict diamonds, you can visit these sites:
United Nations Conflict Diamonds Information
Wikipedia Entry on Blood Diamonds
Diamond Facts (public relations website that appears to be from the diamond industry)

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