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10 Favorite On-Screen Couples!

Jul. 29th, 2007 | 05:39 pm

It's been a while since I updated my LJ, so i've decided to add this list of my favorite on-screen couples in here. I plan on making a top 21 eventually, but this is all i got for now.

Just missin the cut is Claire Danes and Jared Leto in My So-Called Life.

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21st birthday party in NC

Jun. 22nd, 2007 | 01:10 am

Yesterday, the 21st of June, was the day that my family decided to surprise me with a party to celebrate my turning 21. This was highly unexpected, and had no clue of this happening as you'll see when i upload some video footage soon! i've added some photos from the party and some photos of when i got home...

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TV Shows

May. 17th, 2007 | 10:05 am

Now that I got a lotta time to waste with my exams finished, i've decided to do another list! These are my favorite TV shows. Some shows like The Sopranos and Arrested Development are kinda new to me, haven't seen much of 'em.

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Top Recording Artists

Apr. 15th, 2007 | 01:00 am

Here's a list of my top recording artists as of now. The list may change gradually over time, but this is very close to what it should be.;)
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Halloween 2006 pictures

Apr. 3rd, 2007 | 06:39 pm

These are some photos taken Halloween night. Outfit inspired by Sam from Benny and Joon and Buster Keaton.
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a heartwrenching tale of survival

Feb. 19th, 2007 | 09:44 am

The Pianist (2002)

As I sat at home watching this film, I couldn't help but feel the struggle that Szpilman was engaged in. It's a much deeper feeling than felt when watching "Life is Beautiful", because of the intense realism of its presentation.

The story centered around Wladyslaw Szpilman, a charismatic pianist who struggled to survive the Jewish Holocaust during World War II. It intensifies as the story continues, and Szpilman tries to find every possible way to avoid the German attacks. Szpilman's story is beautifully presented in this film, and it's hard to take your eyes off the screen at any moment of the film.

The director, Roman Polanski, chose to film much of the scenes the way he remembered it as he experienced those event with his family as a young boy. It's a fantastic way for a director add his own life to a story about the life of another. The scene where Szpilman performs a piano solo for German Captain Wilm Hosenfeld is one of the best scenes i've seen in all of film. It was beautifully shot, most memorably in the scene where Szpilman walks through the destruction of Warsaw, alone and abandoned.

This is my personal favorite Polanski film that i've seen thus far, slightly above Chinatown. Both are completely different films, but are beautifully directed and have tremendous performances by the casts. I plan on reading Szpilman's book, The Pianist, in the near future.

Rating: 9.4/10

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New Lists!

Feb. 19th, 2007 | 09:39 am

Ok, now that I've taken some time to watch more movies over the past two or three months that I've been away from this website, I want to edit my previous list a little bit.

Favorite Actors:

1. River Phoenix
2. James Dean
3. Marlon Brando
4. Robert DeNiro
5. Johnny Depp
6. Leonardo DiCaprio
7. Jack Nicholson
8. Joaquin Phoenix
9. James Stewart
10. John Cusack

*note: Robert DeNiro has went from 9 to 4, after seeing "Raging Bull" for the first time. John Cusack moved from 14 to 10 after seeing "Grosse Pointe Blank" and "Grifters" for the first time.

Top Ten films:

1. My Own Private Idaho
2. East of Eden
3. A Streetcar Named Desire
4. On the Waterfront
5. What's Eating Gilbert Grape
6. The Passion of Joan of Arc
7. Peter Pan
8. Taxi Driver
9. Pan's Labyrinth
10. Raging Bull

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a beautiful fairy tale

Feb. 19th, 2007 | 09:36 am

Pan's Labyrinth (2006)

In the spirit as Peter Pan touched me as a child so many times, Pan's Labyrinth has given me the same feeling as a young adult. It was because of the heart of a young girl named Ofelia, played by Ivana Baquero.

Most films that in the fanstasy genre don't interest me. This film is nothing like the film "Labyrinth", but to compare both fantasy films, Pan's Labyrinth wins hands down. Labyrinth was over the top with an extravagant story that went nowhere. This film remained simple, and was meaningful to the extent that each character had something that they were all striving for.

The ruthless fascist Capitan, played by Sergi Lopez, was very quick tempered cruel. As it became evident that his main goal was to have his son survive, it was up to Ofelia to make sure that her mother, Adriadna Gil, and unborn sibling survived. Mercedes, played by Maribel Verdu, was also there to protect Ofelia and her mother, and in hopes to be with her husband in the rebel army.

Guillermo del Toro should be praised by the work that he has done. The acting was superb, especially the performances of Ivana Baquero, Maribel Verdu, and Sergi Lopez. While watching the film, I felt like I was seeing the next Natalie Portman in Baquero. That's high praise for such a young girl only 12 years old.

Rating: 10/10

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#4-1 of my 20 favorite actors

Feb. 15th, 2007 | 09:21 am

4. Johnny Depp

He is not only one of the greatest actors living today, but he's one of the greatest of all time. He's always had a genuine quality about him, he's real, he doesn't take roles because of the need of fame or the need for a higher pay check. He takes roles that are "odd", "unique", and portrays his characters with a style entirely his own.

He's the one actor living that I can relate to the most, and that's the reason he's my favorite actor living today. Even in his most odd roles, Sam in 'Benny and Joon', and as Edward Scissorhands, those are the two roles that I relate to him the most. The Libertine is the only film that I haven't seen with Johnny Depp, and from what I've heard, it has one of his best performances.

I rank him right up there with Pacino, DeNiro, and Nicholson, as far as talent is concerned. You can disagree if you want, I don't care, this man's got talent far greater than any actor in his generation.

Some of his upcoming films that I am anxiously awaiting for are... Pirates of the Caribbean: At Worlds End, Sweeny Todd, and The Rum Diary. He will begin filming Sweeny Todd after production of the Pirates 3 film is complete.

Favorite Performance: Sam in 'Benny and Joon'

2nd Place: Edward Scissorhands in 'Edward Scissorhands'


3. Marlon Brando

I believe he's the greatest actor of all time. Everytime that I watch "A Streetcar Named Desire" or "On the Waterfront", I'm constantly reminded of it. Going from those to films to his later film, "Last Tango in Paris", you can only marvel at his greatness. His levels of originality at the time of his arrival to stage and motion picture was phenomenal. No other actor was like him at that time. What he did for motion pictures has changed the way we look at them forever.

Brando and Kazan were destined to make films together. Kazan's main focus in his directing was to get the best out of his actors which he worked with, and he succeeded everytime. With Streetcar, Waterfront, and Zapata, Kazan chose Brando because he knew that no other actor could fulfill those roles the way that he could.

I would've loved to have met Marlon Brando before he died. From "close friends" of his, he was said to have been one of the kindest people they'd ever known. People that didn't really know him, thought of him as a jerk, which is understandable. It's because Brando was a born actor, and a born actor lives to act. For Marlon, acting wasn't a profession, but a way of life.

Favorite Performance: Terry Malloy in 'On the Waterfront'

2nd Place: Stanley Kowalski in 'A Streetcar Named Desire'


2. James Dean

James Dean is not really known all over the world for his films, but mostly for his imagery. His soul lies in the pictures that were taken of him throughout his lifetime, and they are all too captivating. He is the symbol of rebellion for the youth of the 50's and beyond, but that wasn't his intent. I do not see him as a symbol of rebellion, but a symbol of the "actor trying desperately to make a name". After less than two years of becoming one of the biggest names in hollywood, he died in a car accident, and later became one of the biggest film icons in history.

The films that he starred in are some of the most precious films ever made. In just three films, you can see the most charismatic actor to ever live, and each of them show his versatility. East of Eden is my favorite of his three films (East of Eden, Rebel Without a Cause, and Giant). It was the role that he was destined for, as Cal Trask. After all the talk of his performance being similar to the likes of Brando, I say yes. It was similar not because he acted like Brando would have portrayed the character in the film, but in depth, originality, and skill levels. He did not display Brando-like characteristics at all throughout the film, and it is one of the most charismatic performance that I've ever seen.

Until 2006, he has been my favorite actor since I was in high school. Dean is the reason that I appreciate film the way I do today. After reading a couple of biographies written about his life, I can see much of why I can relate to him more than nearly any other actor. If there was any quote that anyone has ever said about James Dean that I felt described me also, it would be this one from Elizabeth Taylor:

"He was very afraid of being hurt. He was afraid of opening up in case it was turned around and used against him."

To conclude, there is a quote from James Dean himself in which he sums up himself as an actor:

"An actor must interpret life, and in order to do so must be willing to accept all the experiences life has to offer. In fact, he must seek out more of life than life puts at his feet. In the short span of his lifetime, an actor must learn all there is to know, experience all there is to experience, or approach that state as closely as possible. He must be superhuman in his efforts to store away in the core of his subconscious everything that he might be called upon to use in the expression of his art."

Favorite Performance: Cal Trask in 'East of Eden'

2nd Place: Jim Stark in 'Rebel Without a Cause'


1. River Phoenix

When an actor comes around that expresses a sensitivity towards humankind and the world around, one can't help but give such admiration in return. An actor who is as charismatic as much of the original method actors of the fifties, and doesn't overdo it like many that tried so much to be like them. He was natural, and those kinds of actors are rare.
River Phoenix embodied everything i have described.

He was "genius" in the performing arts, and was as talented a musician as he was an actor.

His best acting performance in my opinion was in "My Own Private Idaho", and I'm still questioning why he didn't recieve the Academy award for best actor in that film. It was the best performance that I've seen in any film from the 90's.

In only his second film, his performance in "Stand By Me" was simply outstanding for a kid his age. It's hard for an actor like Robert DeNiro to pull out a performance as good as he was in that film, and DeNiro has only done a few that could compete with it.

His love for humankind, animals, and the environment was visible on the screen, in his music, and as an activist. He was an activist for PETA (People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals), one of the best organizations in the world.

He was an actor who has inspired many, many people to follow their dreams. For me he has, and not only that, but to also be a better person in the world we live in. Many actors have inspired me in those areas, but none more than River.

Favorite Performance: Mike Waters in 'My Own Private Idaho'

Second Place: Danny Pope in 'Running on Empty'

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more pictures from last semester

Jan. 11th, 2007 | 11:00 am

i stole all of these from Sheen
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