Reviews

Andy Kaufman in the wrestling match

22 December, 2017 (00:07) | Reviews

I just finished watching Jim & Andy: The Great Beyond.  I think a lot of people won’t care to watch it.  I thought it was wonderful.  I just started the 4th sentence of this review beginning with “I”, and I think that’s fitting in the context of this movie.

What is an artist?  Someone who creates art.  What then, is art?  Existentially, this movie is about artists that become art.

When Man on the Moon came out, I was already anticipating it.  I know who I saw it with, who my friends were at the time, reading articles about it, and I can remember specific conversations about it–namely ones where my fanboy side was revealed, and people thought I was ‘way too into this movie.’

You see, I knew who Andy Kaufmann was from a young age.  Not fully, but I was exposed to his Mighty Mouse lipsync from Saturday Night Live reruns.  I knew Latka from watching taxi late night reruns at my grandma’s.  This dude was weird, and that intrigued me.  I was also fully aware of the diverse and depth talent of Jim Carrey through In Living Color, long before Ace Ventura and all that.  When I heard about the movie, I was interested.  When I saw Jim in character, even just the poster, I was awestruck.  Before I saw a single clip, I knew this movie was going to be like no other, and that there were going to be people that didn’t get it.  The latter only intensified my wonder.

I didn’t know the content they’d use to make this documentary existed until late 2016.  Apparently, not many people knew it for quite some time.  Typically, I’d look at this type of move as a cash grab; Hollywood regurgitating content because someone is going to watch it.  After watching Jim Carrey’s public life spiral over the past decade or more, it might be easy still to make that connection, but I think this is one of the most authentic pieces, from a man who is genuinely hollow…and that’s meant as a compliment.  He is not full of anything; and vulnerable enough to everything that it can simply pass through him as if he doesn’t exist.  That’s why I’m fascinated by artists.  That’s why I’m terrified of art.  I cannot do it.

The movie touches on this specifically throughout.  It’s beyond the deep method actors who get stuck in their roles.  Jim was Andy reincarnated – and that was intentional.  To have someone so sincerely dedicate their waking life to recreating someone else is a very selfless act.  You literally have to die to yourself.  I cannot fathom the denial of reality that has to take place to have a private conversation with Andy’s daughter, whom he had never met, and have it be a healing experience.  Can you imagine the therapeutic value in that authenticity?!  That is, if what we are told can be believed to be true…and that was the essence of Andy’s comedy.  It’s perfect.

This documentary was very personal for me, because it shows the vulnerability needed to achieve something greater than the facades we put on day in and day out.  I think we get confused and think that if we just shudder up, hunker down, and stare life in the face, we’ll be able to rise above it all and come out on top.  Jim’s own words describe the breakdown of these social constructs and even saying that’s what Andy’s humor thrived on.  Denying yourself can either get you to be a fired accountant at age 51, forcing your family to be homeless, or denying yourself can be letting go of the anchor of self and seeing where the sails carry you.  Or, Carrey you.  The most heart wrenching thing in the movie was Jim saying that failure is hard, but when you compromise and still fail, that’s even worse.  You can be dealt a fatal blow either way.

There’s lots of Scripture that ties in well here, like Matthew 16:25, or John 15:13, or even Luke 14:26.  It’s very much all or nothing…but isn’t it all counted as loss regardless?  Deep questions, from a deep movie.

LEGO© Creations

Pitt logo

9 August, 2017 (10:13) | LEGO© Creations

It’s been a minute since I did any LEGO creations for myself.  Usually my time, energy, and abilities are spent towards something with the girls or with the LUG.  This isn’t an exception, but it was a good break to show that I can still bust out a project in a few hours of dedicated focus.  Within 12 hours of talking to the person who wanted this done, I had completed it.  It just happened that I didn’t have the girls and my day was empty before I started work.

It’s simple enough – just started with a pic 2 brick render, stripped out the blue border and built it to be 4 studs thick.  Originally, I had thought to build a black base for it, but I just left off a plate or two on the bottom so that all the letters has an even contact point to stand on.

It’s about 28″ wide and 16″ tall.  Probably around 2,000 pieces in it.  I built a Steel City LUG business card into the P so that if it ever broke, they’d know who to contact.

 

I left the instructions for anyone that was interested here.

Memorable Quotes

We just can’t pretend, that lovers make amends

26 February, 2017 (20:54) | Memorable Quotes

“Practically perfect people never permit sentiment to muddle their thinking.”

– Mary Poppins

Memorable Quotes

Decisions, but I want it all so I get it all

12 January, 2017 (22:47) | Memorable Quotes

“Make decisions despite other people, not to spite other people.”

LEGO© Creations

Red Lamppost from LEGO bricks

5 February, 2016 (22:35) | LEGO© Creations

LampNecessity breeds creativity.  That is what happened here.  When we moved into this house, the lamppost never worked.  I couldn’t figure it out.  I also had a dislike for the original lamppost that was there since it didn’t have a switch to turn it on or off and it didn’t have an outlet at its base.  Once the lamppost head fell off and became a precarious eye sore, I tore it out.

Then, the LUG got ~6,000 red 2×4 bricks.  After the novelty of having that many wore off, the reality of storing them in a 50 gallon bin, long term, set in.  I needed a new lamp and I needed to NOT have these taking up space forever.  Inspiration was born.

There are about 3,600 2×4 bricks in it.  The head on it now replaced the first version which was more square and only had 4 windows on each side.  It looked small and did not emit enough light.  I have another lid that I may end up putting on it in the spring.  It stands a little over 6 feet tall.  The access door on the bottom hides the power outlet.Lamp

I built it over the span of 6 months or so.  I did end up using Methylethylkeytone (MEK) to fuse all the pieces together in 4 sections.  I applied with a paint brush on the inner studs of each brick, so when I pressed them together, it wouldn’t spill out the front.  There was some talk about needing to put some UV protecting coating on it to, but I have yet to do that.

There is some additional “landscaping” in mind once it gets warmer, but I wanted to put this out there now while I was thinking about it.

 

It does this funky frost thing on the studs too – Stud frost

Memorable Quotes

God is Good

22 October, 2015 (23:38) | Memorable Quotes

 

“God can turn your mess into a message, your test into a testimony, He can turn you from being a victim into a victor, and He can give you great triumph from your trials. He can turn your scars into stars and your pain into a pulpit” – unknown




Page 1 of 1791231530Last »