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Windows For Hollywood

postedPosted in Lawyers, Guns & Money, Pop Art, Tech Bytes on January 6th, 2010 by glennm

There has been much discussion recently about the movie industry’s efforts to maintain its product release “windows,” so that theatrical performances precede pay-per-view, followed by DVD sales, pay TV (HBO, etc.) and finally advertiser-supported television.  My view is that these folks are shooting themselves in the foot, because DVD sales actually declined in 2009 for the first time. The lesson is not that DVDs are being sold OR rented “too early,” rather that technological convergence is making more and more options available to consumers, so building a library of physical DVDs is relatively unimportant, and certainly no longer a priority.

But as usual — see their opposition to the VCR — Hollywood has this all backwards. Again.

Netflix, Warner Bros., Adjust Online Movie Renting [CNet News.com].

In a ground-breaking deal for the online movie renting, Netflix and Warner Bros. Home Entertainment announced Wednesday that they have reached a deal that calls for Netflix to get access to more of the studio’s catalog content.In exchange, Netflix agreed to do something it has never done before. Netflix won’t offer new releases from the studio on DVD and Blu-ray for a period of 28 days after they go on sale.

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Shocked

postedPosted in Media Matters, Politically Incorrect, Pop Art, Rants on August 15th, 2008 by glennm

Lawyer Who Paid Rent of Edwards’ Mistress ‘Shocked’ to Learn of Affair [ABA Journal-Law News Now]. Yeah, sure. Although I have no reason to doubt Fred Baron, this sounds suspiciously like Captain Renault (Claude Raines) in Casablanca. (“I’m shocked, shocked to find that gambling is going on in here! “) Indeed, I am truly shocked to learn that U.S. presidential candidates may have sexual dalliances and lie about them. And then mislead his own lawyer. It could never happen in a great country like America. Must be all the headiness of national politics distorting the judgment of a little ol’ country boy lawyer….NOT.

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Not Again

postedPosted in Boob Tube, Pop Art, Stuff, Wonder Wonder on April 28th, 2005 by glennm

I gotta tell you, this is getting frustrating. Every time I find a new, pretty young actress to fantasize about, she goes off and hooks up with some buff hollywood hunk. I mean, first it’s Jennifer Garner getting engaged to Ben Affleck, now it’s Katie Holmes shagging Tom Cruise. Tom Cruise Dating Actress Katie Holmes [ABC News.com].

There they are in Rome, holding hands. Too cute. Well, if I were a woman, I definitely would not throw Tom out of my bed. But Katie, you really shouldn’t piss on the dreams of all your secret admirers!

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The DVD Eats Hollywood

postedPosted in Business, Pop Art, Tech Bytes on January 4th, 2004 by glennm

According to The Hollywood Reporter, in 2003 domestic theatrical revenue fell for the first time in 11 years. If this suggests that Americans are going to the movies less frequently, I certainly agree. Forget about the price, poor service and surly refreshment clerks, the simple fact is that there are only a handful of movies released every year that justify going out to see. Not when DVD and home theater technology have progessed to the point where most films are better viewed in the living room, rather than the movie theater. In short, 2003 was “the year when DVDs ate Hollywood.”

Jack Valenti and the MPAA are worried about Internet file-sharing eroding the movie industry. I would think that Hollywood needs to be concerned more about the movie theater experience itself becoming a relic of history.

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Warm and Fuzzies For Cold Mountain

postedPosted in Media Matters, Pop Art on December 18th, 2003 by glennm

Cold Mountain Evokes Grand Comparisons [BBCNews.com]. Eight Golden Globes, Oscar buzz and wonderful reviews. It this movie is nearly as good as the book was, it should be wonderful.

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Bad Boy Cat

postedPosted in Media Matters, Pop Art on December 7th, 2003 by glennm

The Universal Studios release of Mike Myers in The Cat in the Hat is quite funny. The film, which topped the USA cinema list last week, also has its share of detractors. Some, like Mary Pols of the Contra Costa Times, complain about the movie’s double entendres (erections, “dirty ‘hoes’” and more) and other “crude humor” that she labels “abhorrent.” Others say that as a film it is just “weak and flat” or a “misguided adaptation” of the Dr. Suess story.

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Well phoey on you all. I like it. Myers is as funny as in his Austin Powers series, and the “crude” humor was designed to go over the heads of little ones. My 12-year old didn’t get half of the jokes anyway, but liked the film just as much as the 4-year olds in the row behind us. The movie could have used a bit more rhyme, but going from 223 words to 1 1/2 hours is a tribute in itself to the great Suess. You know, I bet they said the same things in 1934 about what The Wizard Of Oz did to L. Frank Baum’s book. Get over it.

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Face Plants

postedPosted in Science, Wonder Wonder on November 19th, 2003 by glennm

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Skiers know the term “face plant” well, meaning a frontal fall into the snow, head-first. Now, British scientists report that a face transplant may be technologically possible (and actually easier than reattaching a severed finger). Face Transplants Possible But More Research Needed [Reuters]. The physicians hope face transplants will help seriously disfugured patients with the psychological effects of facial injuries and defects. But I am still having trouble telling John Travolta and Nicholas Cage apart in the movie Face Off. Reality follows fiction once again.

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Nuts Even To Ask

postedPosted in Lawyers, Guns & Money, Media Matters on October 20th, 2003 by glennm

So it seems that Caterpillar not only sued Disney but had the chutzpah to go for a TRO — “temporary restraining order” — trying to block release of “George of the Jungle II.” The federal court today showed some sanity and denied the motion, saying that there is no sign Disney sought to “somehow poach or free ride” on Caterpillar’s trademarks to drive up sales of the movie. “It is incredible for this Court to imagine a consumer’s decision to purchase Caterpillar’s primary product line of heavy machinery and equipment, costing substantial sums of money, being affected after watching this film,” wrote Judge Joe Billy McDade.

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Can you believe this crap? A children’s comedy becomes the basis for a trademark infringement lawsuit when a manufacturer does not like the light in which its product is cast. Even Hormel never sued Monty Python for their “spam” skit. At least the judge has a sense of humor, though, describing George in his opinion as “a noble man of nature” who “possesses an unusually thick and durable cranium” and whose “speeches are admirable for their laconic directness and economy of words.”

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Bulldozing Lawsuits

postedPosted in Lawyers, Guns & Money, Media Matters on October 17th, 2003 by glennm

If you thought it was crazy that some consumers sued McDonalds for getting fat from eating fast food, I’ve got one for you. Caterpillar, Inc. has filed a lawsuit against Disney arguing that the new “George of the Jungle II” DVD slanders the company by making children think bulldozers are evil. (Apparently, in the movie George has to fight a bunch of “bulldozing bullies.”) Now this one really takes the cake!!

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Johny English

postedPosted in Media Matters, Pop Art on July 28th, 2003 by glennm

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He’s dumb in the way that Peter Sellers was in the Pink Panther series, but the film Johnny English is a real side splitter. Watch out for the scene with the muscle relaxants.

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