Tuesday, March 22, 2011

before leaving, a note :)

fuNky_sOuL has up and left.

But not without fondly remembering this space.

Find my, hopefully, more improved rambling and more at

That'll be the URL, with a different blog name until I think of something more fitting. 

I am open to suggestions though, for both. Anyone? Leave me a comment.

Wednesday, December 08, 2010

Time to feel the rush: Goal Rush 7 on Dec 12

men’s and women’s divisions
REG: Php 2200. Less  P200 for registration completed before DEC 12, 2010


CONTACT US AT: 09055247670

Saturday, November 20, 2010

the name of this survey is counting blue cars

The shuffling of my n3110c's music player was done on the 2nd of November. But i'm just going over the post and the songs now before publishing this. So there's a 12-day discrepancy. So many things have happened since then. So even if this is no longer reflective of the current state of things, i'll still post this for record-keeping (OC much)

from Farah

1. Put your music on shuffle.
2. For each question, press the next button to get your answer.
4. Tag friends who might enjoy doing the meme as well as the person you got the meme from. =)

chasing pavements - adele
"Should I give up / Or should I just keep chasin' pavements?"

slo mo - eraserheads
"Walang pakialam / Kahit anong kalabasan ... Ang daming ninanais, ang daming kailangan / Pero walang panahon"

i love you just the way you are - billy joel
"I just want someone that I can talk to / I want you just the way you are"

seasons of love - from Rent 
"Five hundred twenty-five thousand / six hundred minutes / how do you measure the life / of a woman or a man?"

say you'll be there -spice girls
"I'm giving you everything all that joy / can bring this I swear"

i do - lisa loeb
not a very positive this song. there's nothing here that would make a good motto. but in light of more recent events, this could fit: *grin* 
"i will be ignored / i will be denied / i could be erased / i could be brushed aside / i will get scared, and i will get shoved down / but i feel like i do beause you push me around"

just like heaven - the cure
"You / lost and lonely / You / Strange as angels / Dancing in the deepest oceans / Twisting in the water"

runaway angel - mojofly
"Why don't you sit down and relax? / And gather up all the reasons to head back / just don't forget where you got / the soul in your art, the wings on your back ...  Don't you regret what you've done / Go pray for the fun / Enough with the hurt"

WHAT IS 2+2?
ilang alon ang dala - wolfgang
"Isang butil ng sala / Ilang alon ang dala"


1979 - smashing pumpkins

"and i don't even care to shake these zipper blues / and we don't know / just where our bones will rest / to dust i guess / forgotten and absorbed into the earth below"

houki hoshi - younha

echo - incubus

"Could you show me dear / Something I've not seen / Something infinitely interesting"

smoke gets in your eyes - johnny mathis

ni yao de ai - penny tai

will you be there - mj
"everyone's taking control of me / seems that the world's got a role for me"

girl anachronism - the dresden dolls

"behold the world's worst accident / i am the girl anachronism"

needs - collective soul
"Here I slumber to awaken my daze / I find convenience in this savior I save"

hinahanap-hanap kita - rivermaya
"Adik sa 'yo"

you and me song - the wannadies
"But it's you and... Me and we'll always be together" --> fail

kung ayaw mo huwag mo - rivermaya
"Hindi kita mapipilit kung ayaw mo / 'wag mo akong isipin bahala ka"

gold digger - jamie foxx/kanye west
"yeah she's a triflin' friend indeed / yeah she's a gold digger way over town / that digs on me"

jigsaw falling into place - radiohead
interesting idea --> "Before you run away from me / Before you start unravelling / Before you take my mic / Just as you dance, dance, dance"

la copa la vida - ricky martin

beat it - fall out boy ft. john mayer
another FAIL

just a phase - incubus
"Now my only consolation is that this could not / Last forever even though you’re singing and thinking / How well you got it made"

1/3 junjou no kanjou - siam shade

waka waka - shakira
"You're on the front line / Everyone's watching We are getting closer / This isn't over / The pressure is on"

empire state of mind - jayz alicia keys
"These streets will make you feel brand new / Big lights will inspire you"

canon in d - pachelbel canon

walking after you - foo fighters

"I cannot be without you / matter of fact / I'm on your back / if you walk out on me..."

Counting Blue Cars - Dishwalla

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

all the shiz: the PFF story so far

*Cross-posted from funkysoul.multiply.com where file attachments of some of the news reports can be found (just scroll to the bottom of the post).

Alright. It's about time. I've not been privy to his dealings in the past, but what I hear from a reliable source, this guy's got to go.

After more than a hundred years since the Philippine Football Federation's (PFF) establishment, fans and players of the sport have yet to see a support system that would be at least par with what the PBA enjoys. Despite the wealth of talent concentrated mostly in the Visayas and Mindanao areas, the Philippines is languishing behind its Asian neighbors, and majority of Filipinos have no idea that we have a football team.

The prevailing me-first-before-others culture among many (majority?) of our supposed public servants have brought on this almost century-long stagnation. Lack of vision and love of self. Those and probably, incompetence. 

As Joaquin Henson pointed out (The Philippine Star, September 2, 2010), it would be interesting to find out if the Philippines' improvement in the FIFA world rankings last year was due to attendance or performance. And with the oodles of money lavished on us by FIFA, the AFC and our richer Asian neighbors, we would like to see where all this money has gone, and why, with the number of coaches, referees, players and expats who dutifully try their best to promote the sport here, the PFF and Philippine football is nowhere near the capabilities of such Asian powerhouses as South Korea, North Korea and Japan - and us being a 113-year old federation. The PFF doesn't even have adequate storage space to store their equipment that their futsal balls are being lugged around by an employee in the trunk of his/her car.

Jack Biantan sent in this commentary to the Inside Sports column in The Philippine Star, published on September 5, 2010 (emphasis mine):

London-based Cebu sportswriter Jack Biantan sent in a commentary about the state of Philippine football today.
'What has the Philippine Football Federation (PFF) done for football?' sighed Biantan. 'Referees seminars? Coaches seminars? But where are the tournaments? What will the coaches and referees do without tournaments? What has the PFF done to the money left behind by the previous administration? And the millions that Sepp Blatter of FIFA gifted to all developing member countries? The PFF is one of the richest sports associations in the Philippines. Just go to their headquarters and you will see how rich they are. Just check where the president has traveled these past two years - first class - and you will be scandalized by his extravagance.
'Last year, the PFF asked Cebu to spearhead its Vision Asia football development program. The Asian Football Confederation (AFC) allocated millions for this. The Cebu Football Association (CFA) jumped on the project and picked coaches who were supposed to be paid by Vision Asia money. Days passed, then weeks, then months. But where was the money for the coaches?
'When CFA president Richard Montayre went to Manila to look for the money, he did not get any answer except for an e-mail from the PFF president chiding him for writing the AFC about the funds. Eventually, the project ground to a halt. Pocketing the coaches' stipends is beyond my imagination. It is the lowest of the low. I thought the PFF had a Board of Trustees made up of good men. I am convinced that Philippine football is facing one of its darkest hours.' 

Ricky Olivares bares all in his column for the Business Mirror, again emphasis and italics mine:

"The Philippine Football Federation (PFF) receives $250,000 every year from Fifa. That translates into roughly P12,000,000. That makes is the second most moneyed National Sports Agency following the Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas. Yet in terms of progress, it is one of the worst. Progress is slow, the results are disappointing, and unity is nonexistent. The various football associations hardly get along and are suspicious of one another’s motives.
Said an old-timer in the local football scene, “Before Fifa began to give money no one wanted to get involved. When the money started coming in, everyone wanted in.
The money sent by Fifa is supposed to be used for a national tournament, coaches and grassroots training, disbursement to the member associations for various projects, and quite a few more. Once the budgets are drawn up for national and regional projects, it is supposed to be taken up by the Board of Governors for approval.
But like in this republic of dangerous minds, that has not been the case in recent years. Nothing has gone to the football associations for years now. There is no national tournament. The men’s and women’s national teams are funded by the managers. Instead, the money has been used to increase the PFF’s assets by investing money with persons not associated with football and hiring the marketing services of a group that delivered nothing. Instead, the money has been used and misused.
One football association has had enough. The Cebu Football Federation behind its officers Richard Montayre and Dick Emperado (FA president of Dumaguete), filed a case against PFF president Jose Mari Martinez for falsification of documents last month.
In a meeting with Montayre two months ago, he disclosed how he was surprised to come across a notarized document dated November 28, 2009, that stated that any two of the following three persons—PFF president Jose Mari Martinez, PFF treasurer Antonio Marty and PFF managing consultant Henry Tsai—were authorized signatories to the NSA’s corporate account with Banco de Oro.

Montayre and Emperado were both present in the meeting but the issue of adding a third signatory—Tsai’s— was never taken up.
And in another document prepared by then “acting general secretary” Ramon Manuel sent to the bank dated June 19, 2010, it mentioned a new board resolution that stated only Martinez and Marty could authorize the movement of the PFF funds. Coincidentally, around that time, the word filtering from the offices of the PFF in Pasig City about a falling out between Martinez and Tsai.
Montayre contends that there was no such board meeting. And furthermore, asked Montayre, “Who is Henry Tsai? No one knows him in the local football scene. So how could he have been a member of the board?”
I managed to secure the mobile-phone number and tried getting in touch with Mr. Tsai and his wife but received no reply. I tried calling again and it was his brother, Peter, who picked up and said he did not know anything about Tsai’s involvement with the PFF. While also surfing the Internet for any information about Tsai, I came across some disturbing information (blog.henrytsai.com) that, of course, may or may not be true.
During a board meeting on September 25, Martinez shed light on Tsai’s “appointment.” “I had to find a solution to Mr. Marty leaving for abroad and the solution was to get Tsai. But before Tsai could be a signatory, he had to fulfill 4 criteria he set... first, as a manager of the Futsal team, second, as a fallback since the PFF always lacked money before the end of the year; thirdly, to rent the ground floor for P40,000 a month; and fourthly, to sell football products.”
And this begs even more questions. Why did Martinez require Tsai to fulfill four requirements to be able to be a signatory to PFF checks? What’s in it for Tsai? And what interests does Martinez have?
Martinez was stripped of his right to authorize transactions from the BDO account.
In that meeting, the Naga FA’s Atty. Anlu Carpio questioned Tsai’s appointment without board approval.
I was able to secure a PFF memorandum dated June 15, four days before the document sent to the bank that excluded Tsai from being an authorized signatory to the savings account. The memo was from Tsai and it had him listed as “Executive Vice President of the PFF” and the subject matter was regarding “overtime, weekends, and holiday access to the PFF building.”
While asking other local football officials about Tsai’s appointment, they expressed surprise and anger. “We knew no such thing about his appointment or involvement in the federation,” said National Capital Region FA president Pocholo Borromeo.
The PFF’s House of Football in Pasig was built through the Fifa Goal Project that helps in the creation of technical centers or headquarters where the NSA can effectively run its operations. It is technically Fifa property and cannot be used for anything else, at least not without permission from Fifa.
A check of the expenses of the PFF in the past year showed, among others, a disbursement of some money to the Pagadian Football Association, an honorarium to the Board Treasurer (Marty), expenses for the PFF Futsal Cup, and some other football-related matters.
On the other hand, it also revealed some curious entries: payment for Bayantel numbers not used by the PFF,sliced cheese bought from Martinez, SM appliances and car expenses, Valle Verde Country Club shares bought and enjoyed by its three signatories (Martinez, Tsai and Gerry Ledonio, marketing head) and “investments” by Tsai.
There are also numerous particulars for payments for credit cards and loans.
And that is just the tip of the iceberg.

Thus, the Board of Governors has now appropriately acted and ordered an audit of PFF's expenses.

MANILA, Philippines - An external audit has been ordered by the Philippine Football Federation (PFF) Board of Governors to get to the bottom of a financial mess that may lead to the resignation of president Jose Mari Martinez.
Mariano Araneta Jr., president of the Iloilo Football Association and newly appointed chairman of the PFF financial committee, said yesterday the Board has designated Tereso Campos to conduct an audit of the books of accounts in the wake of reports of arbitrary disbursements, extravagant expenses, missing funds and unauthorized obligations to third parties.
Martinez came under fire in a recent Board meeting at the PFF office and reportedly offered to resign in November after a motion was filed to force a leave of absence pending results of the audit. But Araneta said Martinez later held back, insisting to stay on the job because of his close relationship with Asian Football Confederation (AFC) president Mohamed Bin Hammam of Qatar.
Araneta declined to accuse Martinez of any wrongdoing until the audit determines accountability even as the PFF president was charged in court by two Board members, Richard Montayre of Cebu and Dick Emperado of Negros Oriental, for falsifying public documents in relation to designating a bank signatory.
What bothers Araneta is the PFF’s “topsy-turvy” accounting which caused the issuance of bouncing checks to provincial affiliates and coaches despite a healthy donation of P16.8 million from FIFA this year. FIFA deposits $250,000 annually in the PFF account. Sharing the profits of the World Cup, FIFA pledged an additional $250,000 to the PFF this year and so far, has remitted $125,000.
With so much money coming in, Araneta said he was shocked when the PFF’s balance in its dollar bank account was only $203.80 last July 31. In reviewing the PFF’s cash flows from January to August, Araneta noted a payment of P3.79 million for a loan and “money for safekeeping” amounting to P2.89 million to Henry Tsai whom Martinez named as bank signatory without Board approval.
“We don’t know how Mr. Tsai is involved,” said Araneta. “He is supposed to be a managing consultant. We’ve been told he claims to be the assistant to our treasurer and the PFF executive vice president, a position that doesn’t exist. All we know is we recently received a demand letter from Mr. Tsai’s lawyers that the PFF owes him P1.58 million.”
Araneta, 56, said it appears that Martinez helped himself to the PFF funds. “There are payments for his hospital bills of P160,000 even with a $2,500 medical insurance, credit card statements of close to P300,000 and cell phone bills,” he said. “A membership was paid for at Valle Verde with Mr. Tsai one of the beneficiaries. Payments were made to a group called G-World for services to produce a TV show and stage a fund-raising event that lost money. We are looking into the ownership of G-World.”
Before Martinez took over the PFF helm, past president Johnny Romualdez never drew a salary and used no more than P3,000 a month for his PFF-related expenses, including representation. Martinez, however, receives a monthly salary of P25,000 and an allocation for his other expenses. The PFF’s monthly payroll has ballooned to P360,000 a month.
Araneta said an example of Martinez’ extravagance was when he flew business class to South Africa for the recent World Cup with legal counsel Corsi Cruz and contractor Ding Wenceslao. FIFA travel consultant Marco Wirz provided funds for economy tickets of $5,850 but Martinez went overboard by $10,600 and even extended staying in South Africa by two days, incurring additional cost for the PFF.
Araneta said he suspects hanky-panky because the books show the PFF borrowing money for expenses. Credit card charges were in round figures, indicating a withdrawal of cash to meet certain financial demands.
“From what we are told, the PFF had $30,000 in BDO and P1.6 million in BPI,” said Araneta. “We want to know where that money went. Maybe, the funds from FIFA were invested somewhere and disappeared which may be why we’re seeing loans being made. We understand Mr. Tsai has been Mari’s associate for over 20 years. Mr. Tsai even rents space in the PFF building at P40,000 a month but we don’t see that reflected in the books. We’re not accusing anyone of anything. We’ll wait for the audit results before we make conclusions. All we want is to clean house. There are sponsors willing to help Philippine football but they’re hesitant to invest because of reports of financial problems.”
Araneta said the falsification charges against Martinez are not as grave as if he is found to be guilty of malversation. “We want to pinpoint accountability,” said Araneta, a former national football player from 1975 to 1984 and a UP engineering graduate. “A money issue is non-negotiable. If Mari is liable, he must answer for his accountability. It’s possible that this is case of gross mismanagement without malice involved. The audit should reveal everything we want to know.”
In a portent of things to come, Araneta said Martinez has been delisted as a signatory in one of the PFF’s bank accounts by the Board.
Since assuming the PFF presidency two years ago, Martinez has been dogged by two resignations as secretary-general. Pablito Araneta and Cyril Dofitas previously served before Chito Manuel was appointed.

And just so you know there's truth behind some of these accusations, which would no doubt lead us to the conclusion that Martinez is engaged in dealings without the consent of the Board of Governors, have a listen to this recording here of one of the PFF's board meetings.

FIFA has already inquired about the misuse of the funds they allocated for various football programs but the latest news I have is that the PFF hasn't replied satisfactorily to their queries.

Meanwhile, Martinez has already been charged with falsification of public documents (PDI, October 1, 2010) since he has declined to resign (Cebu Daily News, October 4, 2010).

Thanks to bleachersbrew.blogspot.com, filipinofootball.blogspot.com and other concerned individuals for  the article sources.

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

15 movies meme

I'm gearing up for a serious post, and I think I'd do this first to flex my writing muscles, so to speak.

The meme: off the top of your head, name 15 movies that stand out/are memorable/which will stick to you forever. Here's my list.

1. Chungking Express (1994)

The only Wang-Kar Wai film I've watched before this was Happy Together, starting from somewhere in the middle to somewhere before the ending, in the midst of a possibly PanPil19 class at the CAL AVR when I was supposed to be watching a film for our SocSci2 class (honest mistake - our sked said venue's at CAL AVR at that same time, so how was I to know? I did realize, after only seeing these lovers dancing around each other's emotions and  bad days, that the subject matter was totally far out from what I was supposed to be watching). Years later, I became curious about him, and luckily my friend Joyce had vcds of his films. So there, I got a copy.

I am a sucker for romance and happy endings. While a very young Takeshi Kaneshiro was pining away after his ex- girlfriend who left him, counting over the days until he can no longer eat tinned pineapple with expiry dates of May 31, in the first story of Chungking Express, I can't say I was totally engrossed by him (even if he is such a looker). I knew not about lovesickness, and the subtle emotions manifested as police detective Kaneshiro and the blonde-haired eyeglasses-clad businesswoman dealing in illegal paraphernalia chanced upon each other when they were both feeling like failures and in need of cheering up, and bound their fates to each other (or so I hope it would happen).  I was more excited about the second arc, involving Tony Leung doing regular police patrol duty, and Faye Wong, a seemingly unfeminine attendant at a sidewalk store selling coffee, salad and whatnots. The moment I saw them together, there was no doubt they'd make a great couple, even if Faye Wong was an unconventional woman and store attendant. There's nothing flattering about what she wears at work, very long flowy skirt up to her ankles when she's out on errands with circular shades (ala Vash the Stampede), her boss makes her mop the floor in front of the store (the other male Indian employees only stay at the back of the shop seemingly to cook), and plays California Dreamin' by The Mamas and the Papas at deafening volumes when she's alone at the shop. Tony Leung either buys black coffee or chef's salad to bring home to his stewardess girlfriend. Eventually, she leaves him, and the owner suggests he take out a variety of girls, including Faye Wong. Nothing happens though, but eventually, Tony is able to have conversations with Faye. Things take off when his ex-girlfriend leaves a letter for him with his house key at the store. Faye is attracted to him first, talking to him when she passed him by the street eating while she was hauling something very heavy. Tony, the gentleman that he is, offers to carry it for her. Faye was just so cute, making up excuses so that she could stay in Tony's place, cleaning and fixing his stuff and replacing his supplies.

Tony's really oblivious character is naive to all the changes happening but he also offers insights in the clever way that Wong-Kar Wai's mind works in realizing the internal debates and monologues of a love-torn person, suggesting metaphors in the appearance of the soap and the rags. I'm now giving you a spoiler-rich synopsis but I just can't get enough of how cute the two are (yes, cute - I'm sorry I can't find any other mature words for them because I usually see things shallowly like that). Those two are absolutely the only reason you need to watch Chungking Express. 

2. Little Miss Sunshine (2006)

Okay, I'll not go overboard this time. If anything, a really interesting beginning - a spectacled chubby girl imitating how Miss USA(?) reacts to the news of her winning the crown, a man talking about the 9 or is it 12(?) steps to something, similar to many self-help paradigms, seemingly to a big and enthusiastic crowd, a bearded man in white with bandages in his wrist getting ready for something, a teenage boy with an appearance that would fit right in at stereotypical teenage geek America doing push ups, a worried simply-dressed woman driving to somewhere (I forget what the granddad was doing).They are a father who's been trying for years to gain success with his steps to success, a depressed gay Marcel Proust scholar who tried to kill himself, a grandfather who smokes weed and still craves for a sex-filled life, a son who's got a world of his own and has resolved to not speak following Nietzsche (for about 9 months running already), a wife who has to contend with running a household and now, taking care of her depressed brother, and the young girl who only dreams of conquering America's beauty pageants but is a far cry from the media's image of beautiful, let alone pretty or cute. Seemingly a movie about a dysfunctional family, but really, these are just the quirks of this particular family, manifesting themselves as they make the journey so that the girl's dream of joining a beauty pageant come to fruition, a trip that changes everyone's views on each of their family members and about life, getting over these quirks and annoying/depressing events to make them more bonded to each other. Full of laughs and insights into an average family just making their way about life, this is memorable storytelling. 

3. Almost Famous (2000)

Music. The 70s rock and roll culture. A writer/rock journalist. Three of the things I am almost crazy about. I believe I should've lived during the 70s high of rock and roll, indulged in the music and written about it. Offering an insight into the era, as well as the experiences of a young, barely-into-his-teens aspiring rock music writer touring with a band on the brink of fame and falling for the groupie who has eyes for someone else, experiencing betrayals,  strained friendships, capturing the essence of a writer's life in the road during that rock-crazy period.

4. Kill Bill (2003 & 2004)

I'm more partial to the first part but it won't be complete without Vol. 2 for reasons you may see later. This was a revolutionary film for me. Combining a non-linear narrative with material that shifted from colored film to animation to black-and-white film and back, unafraid to show the unconventional such as violent fight scenes and their outcomes - blood spurting forth from punctured or severed body parts, ultra-cool, never-seen-before ways of dying as delivered by Uma Thurman's character out for revenge, and the intriguing premise of The Bride searching out the members of the deadly team she belonged to. Something we'll only come to expect from such a one as Quentin Tarantino. 

5. 10 Things I Hate About You (1999)

Okay, THIS is the ultimate feel-good teen movie for me. Shakespeare-inspired or not, Julia Stiles' highly strung, opinionated, feisty Katarina Stratford and Heath Ledger's sensible, seemingly bad-boy, rebellious type coming together after the most undesirable of circumstances - what can I say? I absolutely love how people's actions change other people. Cameron's pining for the younger Bianca Stratford, probably the only well-known of Larisa Oleynik's foray into movies (she's better remembered as Alex Mack), sets things in motion, in a story graced by the typical annoying jock in looks and personality, the geeky romance between Michael and Mandella, an Afro-American teacher who expresses the Old Bard in a unique way and tells his students to do so, spawning that famous poem, a seemingly innocuous guidance counselor on the outside but a closet avid erotic fiction writer, and an overprotective Dad who eventually comes to terms to the fact that he can't keep his daughters by his side forever. Love is simply amazing, even in the very simple way that this movie tackles it.

6. Ice Age (2002)

Watched more than 10 times. I can tell you in advance what line will be the response to a dialog. A mammoth with commitment problems, a sloth who just hangs on to the next big creature who can and will tolerate as well as protect him, a sleuth saber who learns about loyalty, and their journey to return the humans' offspring as they dodge avalanches, glacier-melting lava flows, blizzards, fossils and hieroglyphs, what passes for architecture, primitive sports and a pack of hungry, revengeful sabers - one helluva adventure filled with laughs and funny comments about that epoch in the earth's existence.

7. Fight Club (1999)

The Fight Club itself and how Edward Norton patiently bears all his troubles to reinvent himself as the maniacal carefree leader of Project Mayhem, the surprise Norton/Pitt personality split, and the hard edge and pulsing pace of the film's execution make for one explosive film.

8. Kamikaze Girls (2004)

The title was enough to make me curious. The seemingly delicate Lolita-clad character of Youko Fukuda and Anna Tsuchiya's wild but sensitive biker girl overcome odds to forge a strong friendship that puts all the other violent bikergirls in their places. 

9. Sen to Chihiro no Kamikakushi / Spirited Away (2001)

Felt a lot like a Disney film, I thought, when I first saw it, but with a distinctly oriental feel. Eventually, I didn't think Disney can create films such as these without Studio Ghibli and Miyazaki's insight and Japanese nature. Wonderful colors, a setting that can only be conceived in the imagination (the train ride underwater notwithstanding), a colorful cast of characters (including the witch's oversized baby and its three cohorts), a story basic to human nature. Studio Ghibli and Miyazaki are all about masterpieces of animation.

10.  The Nightmare Before Christmas (1993)

Watched this after one Noche Buena when I was around 8, this is the first animated movie that amazed me because of its distinct style, unusual story and the musical element which was already unusual as it was the gothic characters who were giving life to the show  as they take over and return the celebration of Christmas to the bearded red man.

11. The Breakfast Club (1985)

If it wasn't for the celebration of its 20th anniversary on MTV, I wouldn't have discovered this. Naturally I was curious, because of its teen-centric story. Repressed angst towards school, parents, peers and society bring together this motley crew of students who almost had nothing to do with each other until that Saturday detention. As they day wears on, they discover that they all just want the same thing. It doesn't change their lives immediately, but that day makes an impact on them all as they welcome others who are not part of their circle or comfort zones before.

12. My Sassy Girl - original Korean version (2001)

The turn that their partnership follows, their subsequent unconventional relationship - even if the girl would be the stuff of boyfriends' nightmares everywhere what with her violent streak and very assertive nature - absolutely endearing. If there were two people fated to be together, it would be them.

13. Chicago (2002)

The theater does provide a lot of great material. I didn't think I'd be engrossed by this film, but at the outset, it plunged me into the world of entertaining and the dirty side of it, complete with cabaret and jazz numbers detailing the lives of entertainers aspiring for fame and fortune, only to fall on the wrong side of it, and have to defend themselves and their careers before gossip-crazy reporters. Catherine Zeta-Jones is amazing, introducing as to her crime-blitzy world as she performs All That Jazz and the characters in prison render a very visual number about their exploits that landed them in jail in the first place. Intelligently executed and superbly entertaining.

14. Memento (2000)

Christopher Nolan is an absolute genius. Long before Inception and The Dark Knight, Nolan showcased his depth at weaving stories with Memento, telling a story from the point of view of a one who only retains his long-term memories, so that everyday is like a new day to him, as he deciphers what happened and what crimes were perpetrated to protect himself. I have not the skill to justify just how much every single person should watch this, if only to marvel at Nolan's talent. 

15. The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers (2002)

This is memorable because this exposed me to the loveliness (c'mon! the hair, the smooth and fair skin - sorry fangirl mode) and bundle of effective elven techniques that is Legolas Greenleaf, Prince of Mirkwood, deliciously portrayed by Orlando Bloom. It also showed me the richness not just in scenery but in culture and history of Tolkien's Middle Earth since I slept through The Fellowship of the Ring when I watched it.

Honorable Mentions:
- Hero (2002)  
Colors! Vivid motifs with a narrative that deceives you and unfurls itself at the very last minute.

- Cruel Intentions (1999)  
Rich arrogance meets innocent, sensitive humbleness and turns his world the other way around. Romance, yes, but the tragic kind.

- Mr. and Mrs. Smith (2005)  
Brangelina was scorching hot here. I say these two personalities are a perfect match, and their characters and their world in the movie are grand and befitting of their stature. Okay, so I'm amazed by explosive sequences, fight scenes and against all odds stories. Plus, Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt? There's nothing more to ask for.

And because of that last one, I need to add... 

-Transformers (2007)  
Besides the effects and the transformers themselves, the energy of this film and the fact that all the females except for Sam's mom are hot and kickass are the reasons which make this film amazing.

P.S. Now, I don't think I'll be able to write those more serious posts since I spent almost three hours on this meme. I wish I would write faster. Or else make my thoughts more concise onscreen. (I was going to write about the current state of the PFF and one other thing... Maybe later).

Friday, August 20, 2010

Yeah! The Yeah Yeah Yeahs

I'm having a blast listening to the Yeah Yeah Yeahs. They've been around for a decade and it's only now that I discover them. WTF right? I have so missed a lot. They're amazing! Well, at least I've just been playing Fever to Tell (2003) and Show Your Bones (2006) on repeat, so I've no idea about the more recent albums. But with their talent, imagine them only a trio producing such an interesting array of sound, I'm almost sure those are going to be amazing as well. I love Karen O's energy when she's performing and the immensely interesting personality hiding behind the sort of clothes she wears and the sometimes unreadable or bland expressions on her face. (And I love how Nick looks too *grin*)

singing Pins at te Reading Festival in 2006

I can't describe everything about her style, being fashion jargon-illiterate, but you see how talented she is. She can be overly loud and then simple next time. In the third pic, she's wearing that see through plastic(?) over a blue skirt with matching blue stockings in their video for Zero. Nick just does amazing things with his guitar. And Brian's there supporting the great blend of her Pat Benatar-reminiscent voice and Nick's amazing concoctions  of rhythm, punk/dance beats and those amazing (sorry, can't think of other adjectives right now) wailing guitar riffs that work just right. I haven't gone into the lyrics yet but I will soon enough.

Let's backtrack just a bit. Let's go into how I got addicted to them, my second addiction since LJ this month (see previous post). Okay, so I thought I'd listen to them one day knowing that Maps has been one of their more popular songs (and they're not pop so I'd know there's substance to this band). I didn't know it's been seven years since the song was released. So I get a hold of the band's discography. And I listen. And I like what I'm listening. And then I'm talking about it to a friend, and he raved about how powerful Karen O's emotions were in the song's video. And so I track it down (thank goodness for youtube - no thanks to the content-blocking capitalist companies). And I'm blown away. And so here I am ten days later, a devoted fan. And what made me love them more is the following performance at the Reading Festival in 2006 (I wish we had things like those here, but tough luck kid!). Karen is amazing and energetic as usual, and she just seemed to enjoy performing a lot. And her voice has such that wide range; I didn't think anybody would be doing that kind of wailing she did at Gold Lion. And even if I love the original Maps, the emotion-filled acoustic version is still amazing. Hay... So am I winning you over now? Watch.

new blogspace

I just started this new thing. And I'm steadily getting hooked, what with all the Mannschaft-loving people and communities (read: picspams, fanfics, icons) over there (which is also how I got to be in love more than ever with the German national team - a level which was just waiting to be achieved, given my penchant to obsess about  things given the right stimulus, which in this case is overexposure to the thing in question).

Now I'm no longer sure where I'd be posting when I get the urge to write or record something down. I for one never thought I'd be crossing over to that side. But as of late, I'd been feeling more inclined to write when I'm in LJ. Must be the feeling of community. But then again, that reason may just be misplaced. Anyhoo, if anyone's interested, I've got a feed of my LJ posts at the sidebar, near enough to the top.It's just sad that it doesn't expand, unlike in wordpress where the older entries expand, giving you a preview of the entry. Anyway, I'll just work with this now. Of course I won't be giving this up. So then, see you when I see you. :D

Friday, August 13, 2010

On lies

One episode from the first season of 3rd Rock from the Sun dealt with lying, a new phenomenon the four alien characters recently discovered about the human experience. It was something that can be used in certain situations for certain purposes. They realized it was quite powerful in making somebody feel like they're something big. For instance, Dr. Albright successfully twisted words to make Dr. Dick Solomon, the high Commander (and father figure) of these band of aliens and hotshot physics professor substitute for her in a meeting with the "Knights of the Living Dead," their co-professors in the university. Dick was oblivious to this, and because he was in love with Albright, he didn't think that she'd do anything like lying to him. Sally discovered this when she went out to buy soap after the boys complained that she didn't smell like the other girls of their acquaintances. She was lured into trying out various potions for an ultimately high maintenance lifestyle via free samples. When she came back to get more, she found out she had to buy them at an exorbitant price. And that's when she clued in that the beauty industry is just out to make women look at themselves and ply them with more products to make them beautiful, thus making them fell good, and that's how they continue bringing in money. The adolescent Tommy meanwhile, is walking through a tightrope as he struggles to maintain his relationship with fellow sensible schoolmate August, and he knows that one wrong word from him will mean she's out of her life - something he wouldn't dream of happening.

They had more insights about it at the usual end-of-the-show group musing while looking up at the stars, previously done in the university parking lot, but later on in the comfort of their own rooftop. I don't remember most of it now, though you should watch this series (download if you must since it's quite old - Joseph Gordon-Levitt is what, 11 years old here?) and see how we would see human nature if we weren't born as one. And then one of them posed this very enlightened (at least, from the Filipino perspective) question:

What if a politican takes hold of it?

And the answer:

It would be horrible.