Fun/Entertainment: April 2007 Archives

Whip Cracker

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A friend of mine told me last summer that he was going to make a film. I thought he had in mind something like the home video movies my brothers and I made with some friends when we were in high school. We had:

  • a murder mystery involving a Mr. Thurmafer (I don't remember if we had a name for that one, but I thought the character's name was funny)
  • Alabama Smith
  • Ken the Barbarian (which involved some hokey wooden swords and shields)
  • Ken the Destroyer (which we managed to get some real medieval swords and armor for, not to mention a real ATV for the knight's ride-by slaying of the documentary commentator)

Then there were the fake commercials:

  •  the product that could start with the skinny, little wimp (me) and end up with my brother (who at the time worked out quite a bit and was on his school wrestling team)
  • a Volkwagen commercial where the car that's supposed to stop just before it gets to the two engineers with white robes and clipboards doesn't manage to stop in time
  • Foundationland, which made foundations for houses but advertized itself with stock used car sales pitches; we filmed it in the foundation of a house that someone was in the process of building in the neighborhood next door
  • two with a character named Gil Isuzu who had a sickly evil smile, wore really loud colors on his shirts and ties, and was trying to sell wide-body trucks big enough to hold three wide bodies (with an arm hanging out the back that he hadn't intended to be shown)

Our friend who engineered the whole thing went on to get a degree in film, but I wouldn't exactly say we were making real films. It was some kids having fun.

It turned out my friend wasn't talking about something like that. He was making a real film, using real film equipment with something on the order of a serious film budget (at least serious for an indie film). He told me he was thinking along the lines of Napoleon Dynamite and Nacho Libre in terms of the kind of humor. He's calling it Whip Cracker, and he's not putting out very much information about it yet (even I know only a little more than what's available online), but he has a trailer up in YouTube. So check out the Whip Cracker trailer, and if you like it give it some good ratings.

The latest Veggie Tales video, Moe and the Big Exit, tells the story of the exodus from Egypt in a Western setting. The whole thing is pretty funny, but one of my favorite moments is at the very end, when they list the ten commandments as they might have been given in the old West:

1. Y'all have no other gods b'fore Me.
2. No makin' idols.
3. When y'all use my name, y'better mean it.
4. Lay off the trail one day a week.
5. Mind yer ma and pa.
6. No killin' folks.
7. Dance with who brung ya.
8. No swipin'.
9. No lyin'.
10. No hankerin' for things that ain't yours.

Boston to London

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Go to Google Maps, enter "Boston" and "London" into the search boxes for directions, and then look at the results. Pay close attention to the step-by-step directions. [hat tip: Eugene Volokh]

In celebration of Fred and George Weasley's birthday, Mugglenet has posted their first impressions on reading advanced copies of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, the much-awaited seventh and final book in the series. Assuming you've already read through book six, I can say that there are no serious spoilers here.

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