Autarchy of the Private Cave

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    Archive for the 'Movies' Category

    Personal impressions from movies I had seen

    Recommended: “Parasyte: The Maxim”

    30th January 2016

    Parasyte: The Maxim (2014) on IMDb

    This anime is the best that I have watched since (all seasons/full features of) Ghost in the Shell. In fact, I like this one more than Steins;Gate – which I can also recommend, but it takes patience to watch the first 3-4 episodes. With Parasyte, no patience is necessary: it is a very smooth flow from the very start until the very end. Luckily, season 1 is all there is. Just like with the legendary single season of Firefly :)

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    Ender’s Game (the movie)

    29th March 2015

    Just finished watching Ender’s Game. As of this writing, it has IMDB rating 6.7, and I think it is slightly under-rated.

    Ender's Game (2013) on IMDb

    If you love Sci-Fi movies, this one is a definite “should watch”. I’m not sure if it has much “watching again later” value, but for one evening it is very good.
    The story holds well together, has a good (though noticeably compressed) pace, and proceeds in a fairly expected way. Overall, I liked how this movie was made. The music also blended in organically.

    Some share of the reviewers claim that watching this movie does not spoil reading the book after the movie. Some even go as far as to claim that this entire 2-hour movie can be deemed a “trailer” to the book. I had also seen disgruntled reviews of people comparing the movie to the book and complaining about the changes in the movie, and timeline compression. Well, compression was noticeable, but without it the movie would probably be boring. Also, not having read the book, I believe that the changes were necessary to make this movie hold together better. Honest film adaptations of the books are not necessarily good – these are different media, after all. Moreover, if a movie incites interest to read the book (and Ender’s game did!) – this is only for the better. Especially if a movie is like a trailer to the book :)

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    Pacific Rim: recommended

    22nd July 2013

    pacific-rim-posterYou don’t like FX-only movies, right? You can guess the plot from the trailer, and it then falls apart from the very first minutes – you just find it fairly hard to believe, without first turning off your brain – either willfully, if you are well-trained in mental/djedi techniques, or with the help of beer/other alcohol. Then, all you get are the special effects thrown in your face in the post-processing-added, ugly and eye-hurting 3D. There are a few “wow” moments, but that’s it – you leave the cinema with the mixed feelings of emptiness, lost time and money, and disappointment.

    If that sounds familiar – go watch Pacific Rim. Go with the above-described expectations. Do watch the HD trailer. Try not to read anything revealing the plot – that could be a serious spoiler. Just one hint: you may want to sit through the 3D credits (about 2 minutes) for one final movie scene. I’ve heard there’s also something after the non-3D credits, but wasn’t patient enough to verify that.

    Pacific Rim leaves a pleasant double-sided impression. Read the rest of this entry »

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    HandBrake profile for Nokia E71 default player

    13th August 2011

    Inspired by video encoding with handbrake.

    HandBrake is a very high-quality piece of software – next time you need recoding something into H.264/MPEG-4 (using MKV or MP4 containers) – try HandBrake. It easily saturated all my CPU cores – which I failed to achieve with ffmpeg, which even with threads=8 was only saturating 2 cores.

    Attached to this post are 2 profiles for recoding movies for Nokia E71. The “_best” profile has exhaustive motion detection, otherwise is identical to the base profile.
    E71.plist
    E71_best.plist

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    Using Python in a Java project

    17th May 2011

    If you are a Python zealot, and Java doesn’t feel right, but the project you are working on is a Java project – try

    • Jython – Python for the Java platform, compile your python scripts into Java bytecode
    • Groovy – not Python, but still a scripting language which compiles to jars
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    I want a screen version of Nine Princes of Amber!

    1st May 2009

    In my childhood, I greatly enjoyed the series of novels by Roger Zelazny about the Amber multiverse. I also did enjoy the book by JRRT.

    Many of the epic and thrilling worlds have been brought to the wide screen in recent decades. So today I came to IMDB looking for just any film adaptation of the excellent novel series by Roger Zelazny, and found… nothing! Roger himself is accurately catalogued, though.

    The Amber multiverse seems to me even bigger than that of JRRT’s world, yet the LoTR has a screen version, and Amber doesn’t. That’s unfair! :) I want a screen version of Amber world!

    I’ve found a thread at IMDB, which asks for the movie, so I’m not alone in that.

    P.S. Inspired by the recently re-viewed episodes of SW, including the CW animation series.

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    Recommended: House M.D. TV series

    31st October 2008

    Excellent play of Hugh Laurie (Doctor House), terminology-enriched plots, and the style of “medical detective story” – all add up to an excellent viewing pleasure.

    If you enjoyed Jeeves and Wooster – be sure to check House M.D.. It is completely different, but Hugh Laurie really excels in both.

    Highly recommended!

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