Wednesday, March 18, 2015

KINGSMEN: THE SECRET SERVICE--


I don't have time for a full review right now, but I want to recommend a movie to anyone out there who has not seen it.  Kingsmen: The Secret Service has rightly been described as James Bond meets Kill Bill, and I must say, the results of that meeting are outstanding.

The premise is simple enough--there is a secret organization of clothiers has created a force of international peacekeepers who dress and act like aristocrats and save the world from terror.

In this case, terror comes in the form of an internet billionaire named Valentine with a somewhat homicidal for solving the world's ecological problems.  To say the least, the bulk of humanity would undoubtedly choose global warming and weekly seminars from Al Gore to Valentine's solution.

Valentine is rich and powerful, giving the stodgy Kingsmen like Collin Firth more trouble than their used to, hence they turn to new recruits.

I won't say more about the story except that it combines James Bond cliches with tremendous storytelling to make an all new experience out of what should have been a hackneyed old chestnut.

Collin Firth nails the role Harry hart, the veteran super spy clothier, but it is Samuel Jackson who owns the show.  Playing Valentine, a rich, pampered, idealist with no qualms about mass genocide, Jackson is nothing short of amazing, particularly  as Valentine is entirely unaware of his terrible lisp.  Seeing Jackson in his over-sized baseball cap belting out, "Oh thit!  What ith he doing here?" just doesn't get old.

With this performance, Samuel L. Jackson proves once and for all that he is the heir to the great Gene Hackman--the actor who does everything perfectly, even if he's seldom dominates the marquee.












Sunday, March 15, 2015

In case anybody is looking... I've been pretty inactive for a while

So there's a site out there called "Specking Servers," as in looking at the specifications of network servers.  Here's a picture of the site:





And here is what someone posted on that site:







Wednesday, December 03, 2014

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Well, it's finally out

From the Offaly County Council Site:
http://www.offaly.ie/eng/Services/Libraries/Documents/Tullamore-Library-One-Year-On-.html
The Clone Apocalypse, the last of the Wayson Harris stories, is out.  I hope you enjoy the book.

I really want to thank all of you who came along for the ride.  Many of you have been with me since the very beginning.

Can you believe it's been nine years?  Thank you!

Also, thank you to all of you who have been so kind about reviewing my books.

Steven L. Kent

PS:  Should we have one last "Spoiler Town"?

Thursday, July 31, 2014

I SWORE OFF LATE NIGHT MOVIES, BUT...

I swore off late night movies, but with Guardians of the Galaxy coming out this evening, I've decided to make myself a liar.  I mean, come on!  Chris Pratt!  Zoe Saldana! Rocket Raccoon!  Who can say no to Bautista?  The man has mountains of muscle but his strong suit is his charisma.

So I am off to the late night premier of the movie at my local theater.

Hell yes, I am excited!

But it's not as exciting as going to Disneyland.  I know; I was there this week.  It's been nose to the grindstone time around the Kent household with several projects of late--some you know about and some you don't, but I took Monday through Wednesday off for a trip to the Magic Kingdom and I must say, DISNEYLAND IS EVEN MORE MAGIC THAN EVER!  No joke.  I felt like a kid.

This picture was taken from the Domestic Fashionista website.
This was my first visit to California Adventure, which I had written off as a collection of roller coaster.  Wrongo!  It does have a monster coaster called California Screaming, which I studiously avoided, but it also has the Grizzly River Run, which I rode twice and wanted to go to a few more times.  And, yes, it has lots of kiddie rides for cowards of my stripe.

Okay, yes, the Haunted Mansion and Pirates of the Caribbean are looking a bit long in the tooth, but there's so much great stuff, including old, iconic rides that are still great.  And I'm not being fair to Pirates.  I loved it.  I was impressed with the way the imagineers have updated it to reflect the Pirates movies.  Jack Sparrow appears several times now--he's become something like the yeti on the Matterhorn.

Disneyland was a treat.  It's better than I remembered and may be truly better than it has ever been with the new rides and events.  I used to get bored at Disneyland after a day or two.  Not anymore.  I could have stayed for the week and barely scratched the surface--of course, Disney is mostly surface.  The Disney folks don't overlook a single detail, but I suspect that depth is not their main goal.

WHAT A BLAST!!!!

And so, sadly, today it's back to the projects at hand.  Projects I hope you'll be reading in 2015 and 2016.

Tuesday, June 10, 2014

SO I HAVE A NEW FAVORITE MOVIE FOR THIS SUMMER!!!

Adam Sandler does it again!  The man is both a comic genius and a thespian divine; all of his movies have been harshly underrated.  I have no idea why the critics are so hard on him; it simply baffles me.

Nah.  Just kidding.  I am not going to bag on Blended.  I have not seen the movie, but I have a soft spot in my heart for Sandler--mostly based on Happy Gilmore, The Wedding Singer, and Spanglish.

My new favorite movie of the summer, so far, is Edge of Tomorrow, with Tom Cruise--an actor I generally want to dislike.  Cruise isn't allowing me the luxury of disliking his work.  In his new career as a science fiction action star, he's risen to new heights.  He was good in Oblivion; he completely outdoes himself in Edge of Tomorrow.

I am not going to describe the storyline in detail because I don't want to give anything away.  Let it suffice to say that Edge of Tomorrow is Groundhogs Day with guns and aliens.  (If you've seen the previews, you already know too much about the movie.)

Cruise is great in the movie.  So is Emily Blunt.  Bill Paxton is in the movie as well.  The best thing I can say about his performance is that I didn't realize it was him until I read the closing credits.

This is the first movie I have seen this summer that gets an A.


Tuesday, June 03, 2014

BTW--Here Is my Summer Movie Tally Thus Far

Godzilla--Time for the big lizard to change his last name from "Zilla" to "Awful."  Okay, maybe that's a bit too harsh, but I still give this movie a C-.

X-Men: Days of Future Past--Incredibly well acted, great story, lots of imaginative special effects--A-.

Captain America: The Winter Soldier--I am going to get hate mail for this, but I found this movie overrated.  The acting was fine the pacing was great.  Overrated in this case means I went to this movie looking for an A+ and walked away giving it an B+.

Divergent--Is two movies in one.  For its first first two-thirds, the movie reveals an interesting, though slightly derivative yarn about Katniss meeting Edward after going through the sorting hat.  It pulled me along for the ride.  It really did.  Then the action starts and the detailed storytelling vanishes.  The first section of the movie scores a B+.  The last third scores a C-.   I'll compromise and give this movie a C.

Noah--You know that scene in the previews in which this guy tells Noah something along the lines of, I am here with all of these men and you stand alone and defy me?  Remember, Noah responds, "I am not alone."  I always thought he meant God.  When you actually see the movie, you realize he means he has an army of thirty-foot rock golems.  I'm not joking.  I wish I were.  It turns out that the whole reason Noah was able to build the arc was because he had his golems do the heavy lifting.  Too bad the golems couldn't have done the heaving heaving on this movie because it was a drag--weepy, maudlin, and misplaced--even if you overlook the Biblical liberties taken by the writers.
In this version of the Biblical story, Noah wanted to murder his grandchildren and two of his sons tried to kill him; now there are some twists that I never expected.
I'll give this movie a D, it gets bumped up a few notches because it never failed to surprise me.

I noticed how much more I have written about the more disappointing movies.  I have a lot to say about X-Men and Captain America, but most of it comes with spoilers.

One thing, where are the non-super hero movies?

Here are the FINAL Wayson Harris Covers

Well, here they are... the American and British covers for the final Wayson Harris book.  What can I say, I hope you will judge this book by its cover because covers don't get much better than this.

Okay, yes, once the book is out, I hope you will give the content a try.  My goal was to send Harris off with an apocalyptic bang.














I hope you'll like what happens inside the book as much as what is happening on the outside.