chicago iff

So I almost can't believe that the Chicago International Film Festival is over halfway over, and I still haven't seen one film.  Here are the movies I'm thinking of checking out this weekend:

Go With Peace Jamil: After avenging his mother's murder, Jamil provokes the ire of local crime linchpin Mahmoud—brother of Jamil's victim—and finds himself caught in a deadly, seemingly inexhaustible sequence of violence that permeates a feud between Sunni and Shiite rivals in Copenhagen. When his best friend becomes the latest victim, Jamil will be faced with a harrowing decision: flee or fight. 87 min. Arabic, Danish with English subtitles.

Jerusalema: A poor boy in rural South Africa grows up to become the country's self-proclaimed Robin Hood, hijacking groups of buildings from white slumlords and offering to sell part of them back in exchange for improved living conditions. With never a dull moment, this modern crime story takes some unusual turns to become a parable of justice versus vigilantism. 118 min. English, Afrikaans, Xhosha, Zulu with English subtitles

The Wave: Rainer Wegner is the hippest—and most unorthodox—teacher at his high school. But when the anarchy-espousing prof is stuck lecturing on autocracy during the school's project week, he decides to conduct a little social experiment: He turns his classroom into a dictatorship. The collective mentality is infectious with students, and soon their radical enthusiasm spills out of the classroom. Inspired by a true story. 102 min.  German with English subtitles.

The Good, the Bad and the Weird: South Korean Spaghetti Western? With imaginative director Jee-woon Kim (A Tale of Two Sisters) at the helm, anything's possible. Three of the country's hottest actors star as outlaws colliding with the occupying Japanese army and Chinese and Russian bandits while on the hunt for a treasure map in the Manchurian wild of the 1930s. 120 min. Korean with English subtitles.


sent from my...

I recently took the plunge and bought a used Blackberry Pearl to try out before I get shackled to one at the law firm.  I'm loving it it so far, but I'm still undecided on whether to include the "Sent from my mobile device" message on all of the outgoing emails sent from the Blackberry.  I understand that it is supposed to excuse any typos in my messages, but my emails have typos even if not sent from my mobile device.  Anyways, I have it turned off for now.

I'm also looking forward to visiting the Apple Store one of these days to check out the new MacBooks.  I'm not sure if I love the new design.  They are much lighter and smaller, but the change I think I will miss the most is the mouse button.  I understand how most people use the trackpad to click nowadays, but I still prefer the tactile feel of the actual button.  Just now I thought about how much I used to love going to the Apple Store in Soho to use their free internet when I lived in NY - both before I hooked up internet at home, and during the many times we experienced connection problems.


vegas baby!

I got back Saturday night from a Vegas trip with a few other early BUILDers.  It was a short, but very fun trip.  Here are a few of the things we did:

- Dirty Hypnosis: We are still on the fence about the validity of the hypnosis.
- Terrible's chicken fried steak: Delicious!
- Nick and Norah's Infinite Playlist: My second time watching it, and just as good as the first time I saw it.
- Lance Burton: The big tricks were a bit cheesy (and I still plan on searching the internet to discover how they were done), but the sleight of hand tricks were impressive.
- Buffets: The Mandalay Bay buffet was way better than the Monte Carlo one.  Way better.

puppet retrospective!

From November 8 through December 4, the Gene Siskel Film Center is pleased to present a major retrospective of the innovative film and puppetry work of the legendary Jim Henson (1936-1990), creator of the loveable Muppets and a host of other extraordinary characters that have for decades served as childhood icons and grown-up delights. Marvel at the scope and appeal of Henson’s work for its groundbreaking artistry, introduce a program or two to your favorite moppet, or simply indulge your nostalgia for those happy Muppet Show days.

I'm definitely gonna try to catch The Dark Crystal and Labyrinth!



On Friday, Lauren and I also made a trip to More, a new cupcake shop in the Gold Coast neighborhood.  Unfortunately, I forgot to bring my camera, but here's what we had:

- Bacon brown sugar maple: Sadly, this cupcake did not live up to expectations.  The cupcake itself was dry and crumbly, and the frosting didn't seem to complement the cornbread texture.  There was a decent amount of bacon baked in, so at least that delivered.
- Salted caramel: This cupcake was a bit better, but also not fabulous.  The cupcake actually had a caramel center, but the frosting and cake itself were forgettable.

The place just opened about a month ago, so hopefully the product will improve over time as the concept is promising.

nick and norah

I loved Nick and Norah's Infinite Playlist! It definitely topped Can't Hardly Wait as my favorite post-80's teen romance flick. I definitely like this batch of new teen/early college actors better than the 90's bunch of Freddy Prinze Jr. and Lindsey Lohan era movies.  In other movie news, I grabbed the brochure for the Chicago International Film Festival and am looking forward to catching some festival movies at the AMC River East.

In the world of sports, the Dodgers have a chance to sweep the Cubs tonight!  I'll be heading to Wrigleyville, but I likely won't be sporting any of my Dodgers gear as it can get crazy over there - especially if the Cubs lose tonight.