April 14th, 2008

there!, Hello

Ossie Davis: distracting, but nothing short than amazing...

So, for the last few weekends, I've been using my Collectorz software to list all my currently owned books (a project that is nowhere near completion) and DVDs. While the book part is nowhere near completion (although I'm now done entering the storage tubs of RPG material I've been collecting/using for the last twenty-mumble years!!! Only another few hundred titles on various shelves to go...), I finished out the last of the movie collection yesterday before sitting down to get some writing done. We've quite a few DVDs (I jokingly estimated 800, and was actually not too far off. ::GULP:: When our various loaner copies wing their way home again, we may well be within 10 or so of that number). Most of these are packed away in boxes (only recently moved into a spot where their contents can be easily gotten), and I tend to lose track of the shear number of the things when I am not staring at them.

However, my post is not about the amount of moolah I have blown on a sizeable movie collection... Instead, it's about what I've been doing while cataloging.

I've been putting DVDs on and letting them spin, half watching movies while doing other things. Something I used to do quite often, but a pleasure I haven't participated in for quite a while. So, Black Hawk Down, the complete Dark Season (a Russel Davies miniseries from many moons ago), Return of the Jedi, Aeon Flux animated series and more have gone down with no problem. This weekend, however, I ended up dragging out a couple of my tear jerker movies.

First up, Lilo and Stitch. Regular contender (brawling it out with Mulan and Robin Hood) for my favorite Disney flick of all time. So, I get a little misty eyed at the appropriate parts (made all the more touching because of the delightful characters and the sense of humor). Yeah, I'm a sap. Then, for some reason, my brain turns to one of my favorite flix from the last six years, and i have to watch it.

Of course, I mean Bubba Ho-tep. [Hey, you have your favorites, I have mine.]

While I love Bruce Campbell's portrayal of an aged Elvis fighting it out with a soul sucking mummy in an East Texas retirement home, while I appreciate the sense of humor and the natural eerie quality to things, the damn movie stopped being background noise whenever Ossie Davis showed up.

The man played his role (a guy who believes himself to be President JFK, with a part of his brain hooked up to a battery back at the White House, and dyed black "All over!") with such a subtle yet definite Presence, true charisma and nobility for what might have been a throw away part. He provides such a nuanced performance, that I could not stop watching him whenever he was on screen (thus slowing my catalog process).

It's not like I haven't seen this movie before. This must've been my blasted sixth or seventh viewing of the DVD. There are no surprises, anymore. And yet it hit me in all the right ways. And I got teary eyed all over again at both the character driven emotional bits as well as the implied tragedy that is Aging in a nation that unfortunately idolizes that sorry state called Youth...

Anyway, this rewatching reminded me how truly gifted Ossie Davis was as an actor. It's a shame he's gone, but we still have his movies. Whether they are the social dynamite of Do the Right Thing: a Spike Lee Joint or the surprisingly touching Bubba Ho-tep (two I happen to own)...

I keep hearing rumors of a sequel to Bubba, and though it might star Bruce Campbell, it will not be half the film that the first one was without Ossie Davis.
  • Current Music
    Bubba Hotep soundtrack
there!, Hello

Welcome to Golarion!

30) Pathfinder volume 1: Rise of the Runelords: Burnt Offerings by James Jacobs (2007, Paizo Publishing, 96 pages).

The first, full color volume of a six part Adventure Path (aka: campaign) for Dungeons and Dragons (version 3.5), which offers the opening salvo adventure for a party of 1st level Player Characters. The adventure is nicely written, taking place in the coastal town of Sandport and venturing briefly into the hinterlands. In addition to the 40 pages of adventure material (not merely dungeon crawls, there is plenty of room for interactions and drama from more than a character's ability to swing a sword or cast Magic Missle), the module offers a nicely detailed overview of the town and its major Non Player Characters, some fiction offering details about the Pathfinder Society (Paizo's adventuring society, a part of the Rise of the Ruinlords and further Pathfinder Chronicles supplements), a history of a collapsed society (which is crucial to the overarching adventure path), a handful of new monsters, and a quartet of premade player characters.

By now, the full adventure path is already out (and Paizo has moved on to their second effort), but I only just recently actually had a chance to start reading the thing. Quite nice, with a quirky sense of humor (as evinced in one monster chieftain's "Steal Food, Become Food" policy, which had me rolling for a while and still makes me chuckle...). The series apparently gets quite dark as it goes (yay!), but it starts out on a more traditional footing, while doing a little for goblins what Crown of the Kobold King did so well for kobolds (making the monsters more interesting than their traditionally accepted "steppin' fetchit" stereotyping)...

Current Reading List:
Grin of the Dark by Ramsey Campbell, Coven of Vampires by Brian Lumley, Warhammer Fantasy Roleplay rules, Rise of the Ruinlords: The Skinsaw Murders, and a couple other things...