Unordered List

Monday 25 January 2016

The Big Short: Douchepocalypse Now

The Big Short is full of scenes where finance bros stare at each other in dawning horror, stunned by the realization that the U.S. economy is built on fraud and misinformation. Conveniently, that is exactly how I feel about The Big Short receiving any kind of critical acclaim whatsoever.

Going into this movie, I knew two things: the wigs and hairstyling looked horrible, and at some point Margot Robbie would explain The Economy while gratuitously nude. Thus warned, I assumed I was in for a reasonably good Oscar movie with some dumb misogynist garnishes. How wrong I was.

Instead, the experience was like gazing into Michael Moore's butthole with a telescope built by Seth MacFarlane.

Billed as a kind of biographical comedy, The Big Short is more like a docudrama with occasional jokes thrown in. The technical details are complex, but the basic narrative is simple: a handful of hedge fund managers correctly predict that the housing market is going to crash, and decide to bet against the U.S. economy. So while they do uncover some stunning examples of Wall Street fraud, they're not exactly underdog heroes. The cast is split between loud rich men who are Right but widely ignored by the financial establishment (Steve Carrell, Christian Bale, Ryan Gosling, Brad Pitt, et al), and everyone else, who is Wrong.

Sunday 24 January 2016

Awards eligibility post & highlights from 2015

It's Hugo Award nomination season, and I'm eligible in the Fan Writer category!

If you enjoy this blog, please consider me on your Hugo ballot! (Or other non-Hugo awards that I don't know about!) To nominate for the 2016 Hugos, you either need to have attended Worldcon in 2015, or have bought a ticket for Worldcon 2016 or 2017. Or you can buy a "supporting membership," which lets you vote on the Hugos (so ~prestigious!) and get ebooks of the nominated books/short stories.

For the "fan writer" category, you can consider anything I wrote in a ~fannish capacity. So, this blog, along with my Tumblr and Twitter, etc. Here are some highlights from 2015!

Interview: Mad Max: Fury Road costume designer Jenny Beavan (Now nominated for an Oscar!)

The new heroes of Star Wars: The Force Awakens. I'm looking forward to writing more about Star Wars this month!

What was up with that Black Widow scene in Avengers: Age of Ultron? My most ~controversial post of 2015, apparently.

Age of Ultron: The empire of Tony Stark On Age of Ultron's imperialist overtones, and Tony Stark's status as a burgeoning supervillain.

Ant-Man: Fun, but still a waste of $130 million

Review: Mad Max: Fury Road The most important movie of 2015.

Podcast: Guest appearance on Into It, discussing Mad Max: Fury Road with regular host Elle Collins.

For my other writing, head on over to Tumblr, where I host my more casual posts & commentary.

P.S. My friend Elizabeth Minkel and I recently launched a weekly newsletter for fanfic recs (a new fandom or fic theme each week!) and cool fandom news/links. You can sign up here, and check out previous issues here. It's pretty great!