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Blog of Round Things

Hi. I'm the Contributing Editor for Mania in charge of DVD. Will that soon sound like I'm in charge of Betamax or Pong? I ramble. You read.

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Big Mania merger

4/1/2007 10:52:36 AM permalink

Well, as you may have heard by now, all those rumors turned out to be true: as of this week, Mania Entertainment will be the new owners of Google.

We don't have the exact figures, but all sources point to the fact that the multibillion dollar merger was anything but consentual. What really matters is that for the month of April, both Mania and will shut down, and be "under construction" until May's launch of the new, which we feel will be the top pop culture and search engine website in the world.

So good luck to all involved, and please come back to check out our new look ad features next month!


Tags: mania, news, first, pop, google, april

B-fest aftermath

1/28/2007 11:21:51 AM permalink

I was going to add this entry right after the 'fest ended, but was a bit drowsy and decided to take a nap. So here I am at 10:52 on Sunday morning.

This year's B-fest ended with some controversy, and perhaps a look to the future. As an experiment, KING KONG VS. GODZILLA was shown on DVD via video projector. As B-fest organizer Wyatt Ollestad pointed out, the availablility of film prints, especially for obscure genre titles, is beginning to dry up, and a lot of the available prints are falling apart. The show opener THE BRAIN THAT WOULDN'T DIE was nearly unwatchable - and not because of its reprehensible content and acting. The print is so warped and brittle that it was impossible to keep it in focus. B-fest is famous for its technical problems, but these are more often caused by poor print condition than damaged equipment or sleepy projectionists.

That said, KKvG started with a fumbling attempt to get both picture and sound. Once righted, we were treated with one of the most flawless presentations the 'fest has ever offered. The widescreen image - overmatted at the bottom on DVD, but that's Universal's fault - could have been bigger, but they would',ve had to set up the projector a few rows into the crowd. I found myself nodding off through most of the movie, but that's more due to the fact that I've seen this one 50 times. Despite fatigue, I watched all of Roger Corman's TEENAGE DOLL (presented from a TV print with the YOUNG REBELS title) a bit earlier, as I'd never seen it before.

With plans in place to upgrade equipment, we're looking to a future when spots in the program will be filled more ad more via video, which isn't necessarily a bad thing. It might prevent the projectionist from being able to show THE WIZARD OF SPEED AND TIME backwards, but there are plenty of B-fest-worthy titles available on DVD, and the event has never relied on format for enjoyment. Sure, it was great when they were able to secure a gorgeous 35mm widescreen print of KINGDOM OF THE SPIDERS one year, but the crowd stilled loved it a couple of years later when all they had was a16mm TV print.

This was a great year for B-fest, and it will go on to have more great years. Even in the year 2048, when it moves out of the Norris Center (BTW, named after Chuck Norris) to a specially constructed space station, we'll be slinging paper plates across the theater in zero gravity, every time we spot a flyig saucer, whether it's in a scene in PLAN 9 FROM OUTER SPACE, or just out the window.

Tags: movie, bfest, marathon

B-fest 11:51 AM

1/27/2007 11:54:05 AM permalink

Okay, now they're not only juggling the schedule of movies, but also the movies themselves, as reel 2 of KRULL ended up going thru the projector toward the end of the film.       Caught a short nap during TARANTULA, just had some breakfast, and I'm all revved for the home stretch!

Tags: bfest

B-fest 8:03 AM

1/27/2007 8:06:32 AM permalink

STREET TRASH got us past the midway point, and now folks are feeling a bit invigorated by the experience and looking for refreshments during a break. Unfortunately, nothing in the Norris Center is open yet except vending machines.     Heading on into a great following feature: THE INCREDIBLE MELTING MAN.   Yecch!

Tags: bfest

B-fest 4:50 AM

1/27/2007 4:56:08 AM permalink

Oh, lord. INVASION OF THE STAR CREATURES near did me in. A combination of its numb comedy and the splicy print made me think I was falling asleep, tho I'm not sure.                Mystery Shorts added turned out  to be an Inkwell Imps cartoon with a hypnotism theme, after which the imposed the "subject to change" policy in the schedule and moved back STREET TRASH in favor of THE HYPNOTIC EYE.      Fine with me, but the Norman MacLaren short about a crazy chair actually did put me to sleep briefly, so I'm taking this break to walk around a bit and reassemble my marbles.    

Tags: bfest

B-fest 12:39 AM

1/27/2007 12:43:54 AM permalink

Midway thru PLAN 9 FROM OUTER SPACE and it's the usual chaos of incoherence and flying paper saucers. Seems like there's more every year. And every year people think of new jokes.       WIZARD OF SPEED AND TIME was run without sound, leading to a demand to see the short again backward/upside down and forward. An annoying new tradition??           Everyone seemed to enjoy the massive raffle giveaway, even if the prize they got is something lame.        Still wide awake - good thing I got that half hour nap this afternoon!     

Tags: bfest

B-fest 11:08

1/26/2007 11:09:16 PM permalink

3-D on REVENGE OF THE CREATURE was intermittently decent, some reels better than others. Crowd is up to the challenge, in high spirits and rockin' the wisecracks throughout.  Starbucks scored early, now closed. Gotta lay off the junk, as warning signs brewing...


B-fest 11:08

1/26/2007 11:09:14 PM permalink

3-D on REVENGE OF THE CREATURE was intermittently decent, some reels better than others. Crowd is up to the challenge, in high spirits and rockin' the wisecracks throughout.  Starbucks scored early, now closed. Gotta lay off the junk, as warning signs brewing...


B-fest 11:02 PM

1/26/2007 11:05:01 PM permalink

Well, we made  it through the first three features with only 6-7 technical problems. Print quality is pretty bad - BRAIN THAT WOULDN'T DIE died midway through the last reel.

Tags: bfest

Just testing

1/23/2007 9:52:52 AM permalink

Up at Norris Center and thot I'd check whether I can actually log in here. Yay!

Tags: test

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Date Joined: October 27, 2006