Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Jon Stewart Goes Nuclear On Fox News

They are either Evil or Stupid !
And the conclusion is : If you do not want your money to be used for terrorism, stop watching Fox News !!

The Daily Show With Jon StewartMon - Thurs 11p / 10c
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Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Movie Review : The Trigger Effect

Movie Review : The Trigger Effect
Released : 1996
Director: David Koepp
Genre : Thriller
Cast: Kyle MacLachlan, Elisabeth Shue
My Rating : 6 out of 10

While browsing the TV Guide, I came across this movie - it had an interesting enough synopsis, that perked my curiosity enough to record it on the DVR and watch it later.

Which movie would you prefer to watch about some Aliens attacking planet earth ? Is it "Independence Day" or "Signs" ? (Maybe for you the answer is "neither", but that's beside the point !) Do you prefer loud action ? Or do you prefer to see how ordinary people would react to extra-ordinary circumstances ? That answer should decide if you want to try "The Trigger Effect" or avoid it.

The situation in this movie is not post-apocalyptic, but has certain resemblance to it. Here a mysterious power outage throws a family's life in disarray. The movie does not explain why exactly the outage happened, and that's fine by me. What it tries to do is to show how common people would try to cope up with complete lack of electricity, no telephone, no radio/TV, no communication of any sort. This is 180 degrees opposite of "Mad Max 2". People in this movie are close to a breaking point and there are indications that if power is not restored, there will be anarchy. But everyone's trying his or her best to hang in there.

This is the kind of treatment I like. And if the movie is willing to go off a beaten path, I am more than willing to take a tolerant view of it. So while such a movie may seem boring to some, I am drawn to any such attempt of "new treatment". In spite of such biases, the movie was not entirely satisfying to me.

Generally this happens because of a hasty, contrived ending. The problem here is quite opposite. The latter half of the movie is quite tense and well crafted. The issue I have is with the setup. It takes forever for director David Koepp to establish the characters and their relationship. And even then, we don't really learn much about them. So chances are many viewers would start yawning and switch off before the 1st quarter of the movie is over.

Fortunately, there is no preaching about how over-dependence on the technology is bad. The movie is far away from being a Sci-Fi. I think the movie is incorrectly labeled as a "thriller", and "drama" would be a better genre for it.

I have very mixed feeling about recommending this movie. It's rated 'R' and is not for kids. It's definitely not a waste of time, but I don't see any compelling reason to go out and rent it either.

Monday, August 16, 2010

Bumper Stickers - 2

Not very politically correct in this economic climate, but in it's own insensitive way, does have a point.
Work harder ! Millions of people on welfare depend on you.

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

if Furlough then Salary++ ;

The Law of Of Unintended Side Effects, strikes again.

California Watch reported that :
Rather than receiving a 15-percent pay cut as intended, hundreds of state managers and other high-level workers brought home more money than usual during some furlough weeks thanks to an obscure federal labor law, a California Watch review of state records has found.
During furlough weeks between February 2009 and April 2010, state departments paid at least $1.6 million in overtime to salaried state workers who are not typically eligible to receive it, according to data provided by the state controller's office. At least 14 employees took home more than $10,000 in overtime payments during that period.
The payments were allowed because during furlough weeks, federal law requires the state to temporarily classify most salaried workers as hourly employees so their pay can legally be reduced.
But that shuffle has a side effect: It makes employees who are typically exempt from overtime rules eligible for a rare opportunity to collect the extra cash.
Ironically, the department that paid the most was EDD !
Of the three-dozen departments that paid at least some overtime to exempt workers, none shelled out more than the Employment Development Department, which paid more than $488,000. The department is charged with running California’s unemployment programs, which have been swamped in the down economy.
Department spokeswoman Loree Levy said demand for unemployment benefits and information technology projects within the department led to the overtime, which she said was closely monitored and approved.

Be happy, your tax dollars are working overtime !

Monday, August 9, 2010


Movie Review : Raavan
Released : 2010
Language : Hindi
Director : Mani Ratnam
Starring : Abhishek Bachhan, Aishwarya Rai, Govinda
My Rating : 1 out of 10

My only reaction to "Raavan" by Mani Ratnam, is "Hey Raam !"

I have loved many of Mani Ratnam movies. "Bombay" is on my list of best movies. So it makes me very sad to say that, this movie is not worth writing any review. Simply avoid it and send your ticket money to Mani Ratnam as a "retirement gift" and hope he gets the message.
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