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Aug
13th
Tue
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First Confirmed WNV Human Case in Santa Clara County this Year (Aug 2013) — Woman Hospitalized, Recovering, Now Suggested Crow Coroner

MosquitoHome - Vector Control District - County of Santa Clara

From a SJ Merc article, “The district asks Santa Clara County residents to report crows, jays or birds of prey that have been dead for less than 48 hours and do not appear to have died because of an injury.”

May
1st
Sun
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Some Films, Shortly Reviewed and Graded

In Theatres:

Fast Five (2011 action blockbuster)— I wasn’t holding my breath that this was going to be any good, and I was mildly surprised with the delivery.  Good action, car chases, etc. About what you’d expect from an over-the-top car movie.  (B-)

The Greatest Movie Ever Sold (2011 lighthearted documentary) — Morgan Spurlock, from Super Size Me fame, is at it again.  His shtick this time is to sell literally every aspect of his film to advertisers while at the same time showing how the product-placement industry works.  It’s not amazingly eye-opening or poignant, but it gets the job done.  (B)

On DVD:

Withnail and I (1987 extremely British comedy) — any self-respecting anglophile must have seen this at least a dozen times.  This was my first viewing, so I am rightly ashamed.  It’s a cult classic substance abuse film — think Trainspotting, but with booze. I wish there were more midnight screenings of this rather than Rocky Horror. (B)

My Neighbor Totoro (1988 animated, family) — Miyazaki’s third Studio Ghibli film from back in the day when hand-drawn animation really meant something.  Love oozes out of every crevice of this film, including my love for it.  (A)

Grave of the Fireflies (1988 animated, war) — Studio Ghibli also did this one, and originally it double-billed with My Neighbor Totoro.  If for no other reason than nostalgia, I recommend doing the same.  This is a harrowing, sad WW2 film set in war-torn Japan.  It really has no business being animated, but it is.  And it works, probably better than if it were live action.  (A)

La Haine (1995 French crime drama) — It’s sort of cut from the same cloth of a Clerks, in that it’s indie, existential, black and white, and a very personal slice-of-life story. That’s as far as the comparison can go though.  This is a gritty, urban, street story with really powerful performances.  Vincent Cassel shines. (B)

When We Leave (2010 German drama) — A gripping tale of a Turkish family in Germany dealing with the conflicts of traditional values with modern life.  Social injustices abound in this Oscar-nominated film.  (C+)

Apr
29th
Fri
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There’s some really fun and creative horror flicks out there, if you missed any of them (May, Teeth & Heartless).

There’s some really fun and creative horror flicks out there, if you missed any of them (May, Teeth & Heartless).

Apr
11th
Mon
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Castle Rock State Park April 9, 2011

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Castle Rock State Park April 9, 2011

Castle Rock State Park April 9, 2011

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Here are the last few movies I watched. Win Win and Sin Nombre are the best of the bunch.

Here are the last few movies I watched. Win Win and Sin Nombre are the best of the bunch.

Jan
24th
Sun
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Jan
23rd
Sat
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Jan
19th
Tue
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