23 November 2008

Vampires beat down Bond

(from e! here)
Bigger than the latest Indiana Jones. Bigger than the biggest James Bond. That's how big Twilight was yesterday.

The $37 million vampire flick, expected to have a killer opening day, had a monster opening day, grossing an estimated $35 million, Exhibitor Relations reported. One-fifth of that gross, or $7 million, came from Friday midnight screenings.

The box-office tracking firm said a $75 million Friday-Sunday gross was now a possibility. Going into Friday, $60 million was considered the movie's best-case scenario.

When the counting's done, Twilight's Friday take may rank as the 14th or 15th biggest opener of all time, having surpassed the debuts of Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull ($25 million) and Quantum of Solace ($27 million), to name two recent blockbusters.

I suddenly had a thought about my whole Twilight-December-13-ticket-thing: I might just end up surrounded by screaming 13 year old girls... I remember a small part of my brain making a note that I should go to Twilight on an unusual day, at a strange time to miss the crowds. Now I've managed to lump myself in the middle of a a packed cinema. Ha. Oh well, I am still excited to see the film!

Top Albums 2008

Updated 29 Nov (added Uncut and Mojo)
Magazines and blogs are starting to write their top lists already (The Killers new album hasn't even come out yet!). I'm not going to re-post everything, but out of curiousity here are the Top 30 Albums according to:

30 The Night Marchers - See You in Magic
29 Yeasayer - All Hour Cymbals
28 Neon Neon - Stainless Style
27 M83 - Saturdays=Youth
26 Peter Broderick - Home
25 Randy Newman - Harps and Angels
24 Fucked Up - The Chemistry of Common Life
23 Elbow - The Seldom Seen Kid
22 Mercury Rev - Snowflake Midnight
21 Amadou & Mariam - Welcome to Mali
20 TV on the Radio - Dear Science
19 Beck - Modern Guilt
18 Pete Molinari - A Virtual Landslide
17 Sigur Rós - Með suð í eyrum við spilum endalaust
16 Erykah Badu - New Amerykah Part One (4th World War)
15 Eli "Paperboy" Reed & The True Loves - Roll With You
14 British Sea Power - Do You Like Rock Music?
13 Drive-By Truckers - Brighter Than Creation's Dark
12 Don Cavalli - Cryland
11 Portishead - Third
10 Neil Diamond - Home Before Dark
9 The Bug - London Zoo
8 The Week That Was - The Week That Was
7 Glasvegas - Glasvegas
6 The Hold Steady - Stay Positive
5 Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds - Dig, Lazarus, Dig!!!
4 Bon Iver - For Emma, Forever Ago
3 Paul Weller - 22 Dreams
2 The Last Shadow Puppets - The Age Of The Understatement
1 Fleet Foxes - Fleet Foxes

30 Gnarls Barkley - The Odd Couple
29 Robert Foster - The Evangelist
28 The Felice Brothers - The Felice Brothers
27 MGMT - Orcular Spectacular
26 Lucinda Williams - Little Honey
25 Jenny Lewis - Acid Tongue
24 Glasvegas - Glasvegas
23 Black Mountain - In The Future
22 The Raconteurs - Consolers of The Lonely
21 Howlin Rain - Magnificent Fiend
20 My Morning Jacket - Evil Urges
19 Shearwater - Rook
18 Stephen Malkmus & The Jicks - Real Emotional Trash
17 Goldfrapp - Seventh Tree
16 Wild Beasts - Limbo, Panto
15 Hot Chip - Made In The Dark
14 Randy Newman - Harps and Angels
13 James Blackshaw - Litany of Echoes
12 The Hold Steady - Stay Positive
11 Drive-by Truckers - Brighter Than Creation's Dark
10 Paul Weller - 22 Dreams
9 Kings Of Leon - Only By The Night
8 Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds - Dig!!! Lazarus, Dig!!!
7 Neon Neon - Stainless Style
6 Elbow - The Seldom Seen Kid
5 Vampire Weekend - Vampire Weekend
4 Bon Iver - For Emma, Forever Ago
3 TV On The Radio - Dear Science
2 Fleet Foxes - Fleet Foxes
1 Portishead - Third

30 Young Jeezy - The Recession
29 Raphael Saadiq - The Way I See It
28 Stephen Malkmus And The Jicks - Real Emotional Trash
27 Mariah Carey - E=MC²
26 Usher - Here I Stand
25 Santogold - Santogold
24 The Roots - Rising Down
23 The Cool Kids - The Bake Sale
22 Coldplay - Viva La Vida
21 Erykah Badu - New Amerykah: Pt. One (4th World War)
20 Wale - The Mixtape About Nothing
19 Katy Perry - One Of The Boys
18 Ponytail - Ice Cream Spiritual
17 Conor Oberst - Conor Oberst
16 Be Your Own Pet - Get Awkward
15 Bon Iver - For Emma, Forever Ago
14 Jenny Lewis - Acid Tongue
13 Al Green - Lay It Down
12 My Morning Jacket - Evil Urges
11 Death Cab For Cutie - Narrow Stairs
10 Fall Out Boy - Folie A Deux
09 Vampire Weekend - Vampire Weekend
08 Randy Newman - Harps and Angels
07 of Montreal - Skeletal Lamping
06 Robyn - Robyn
05 Hot Chip - Made In The Dark
04 Metallica - Death Magnetic
03 TV On The Radio - Dear Science
02 Girl Talk - Feed The Animals
01 Lil' Wayne - Tha Carter III

30 Portishead - Third
29 AC/DC - Black Ice
28 Paul Weller - Dreams
27 Neil Diamond - Home Before Dark
26 Conor Oberst - Conor Oberst
25 Metallica - Death Magnetic
24 The Last Shadow Puppets - The Age Of The Understatement
23 Beck - Modern Guilt
22 The Killers - Day & Age
21 Razorlight - Slipway Fires
20 The Gaslight Anthem - The '59 Sound
19 Goldfrapp - Seventh Tree
18 British Sea Power - Do You Like Rock Music?
17 Adele - 19
16 Hot Chip - Made In The Dark
15 Lil Wayne - Tha Carter III
14 Kaiser Chiefs - Off With Their Heads
13 MGMT - Oracular Spectacular
12 Keane - Perfect Symmetry
11 Sigur Rós - Med sud i eyrum vid spilum endalaust
10 Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds - Dig!!! Lazarus Dig!!!
09 The Raconteurs - Consolers Of The Lonely
08 Elbow - The Seldom Seen Kid
07 TV On The Radio - Dear Science
06 Duffy - Rockferry
05 Glasvegas - Glasvegas
04 Vampire Weekend - Vampire Weekend
03 Coldplay - Viva La Vida Or Death And All His Friends
02 Fleet Foxes - Fleet Foxes
01 Kings Of Leon - Only By The Night

30 I'm From Barcelona - Who Killed Harry Houdini?
29 Lil Wayne - Tha Carter III
28 MGMT - Oracular Spectacular
27 Liam Finn - I'll Be Lightning
26 Lee Ann Womack - Call Me Crazy
25 Mugison - Mugiboogie
24 Santogold & Diplo - Top Ranking
23 Mates of State - Re-Arrange Us
22 No Age - Nouns
21 The Raveonettes - Lust Lust Lust
20 Hot Chip - Made In The Dark
19 Gentleman Jesse and His Men - Introducing Gentleman Jesse and His Men
18 Death Cab
 for Cutie - Narrow Stairs
17 Bonnie 'Prince' Billy - Lie Down In The Light
16 My Morning Jacket
 - Evil Urges
15 Nick Cave & the Bad Seeds - Dig!!! Lazarus Dig!!!
14 Langhorne Slim - Langhorne Slim
13 Ida Maria - Fortress Round My Heart
12 of Montreal - Skeletal Lamping
11 The Hold Steady - Stay Positive
10 Deerhunter - Microcastle
09 Lucinda Williams - Little Honey
08 Sun Kil Moon - April
07 Girl Talk - Feed the Animals
06 Fleet Foxes - Fleet Foxes
05 Okkervil River - The Stand Ins
04 Bon Iver - For Emma, Forever Ago
03 Vampire Weekend - Vampire Weekend
02 Sigur Rós - Med sud i eyrum vid spilum endalaust
01 She & Him - Volume One

My top albums of 2008 in no particular order*:
Vampire Weekend - Vampire Weekend
Death Cab
 for Cutie - Narrow Stairs
Kings Of Leon - Only By The Night
TV On The Radio - Dear Science
Kaiser Chiefs - Off With Their Heads
MGMT - Oracular Spectacular
Portishead - Third
Ryan Adams & The Cardinals - Cardinology
Bloc Party - Intimacy
The Stills - Oceams will Rise
Santogold - Santogold

*I reserve the right to change my mind and add new albums on a whim hehe

22 November 2008

Never miss a beat

What a failed to mention on Friday (I was preoccupied with a certain teen vampire movie after all) was that I had a wonderful dinner at on the Shore with family. There were some hiccups though...

1. Rich was to pick me up from work so we could go straight there (traffic is shite). That morning I had given him $40 to pick up a couple of things from the supermarket and get some gas- he had all day you see. I'm all packed and ready by 5pm, so I head to our work bar and have a glass of wine with co-workers. I get a text saying to head out. I grab all my stuff - I had done some Xmas shopping on my lunch break. I find first I have to walk way up Wyndham as he has somehow ended up there (so now I am hot and panting and my hands are falling off thanks to the heavy plastic bags I am carrying). But, NO WORRIES! I quickly get back in a good mood - I plug in my player and pick out some sweet tunes, while reading to Rich from December's Empire magazine.

2. Unfortunately traffic is crawling. He ends up in the wrong lane and we go around the block. Its ok, I'm chilling. I've touched up my make-up and I'm feeling good.

3. Fanshawe Street, approximately 6pm: we are at the head of the second lane downtown. The car splutters. It stops. He looks at me and says... OUT OF GAS. (How can that be when I paid for us not to be I am wondering?!) My mood isn't so good now. I'll go out on a limb and throw out: livid, fuming, and pissed.

4. There goes the cool demeanor and reapplied makeup as I sweat it out walking to the nearest BP. Rich catches up to me (Someone helped him push the car around the corner). At BP I find you can't borrow a can for the gas. You have to buy a bloody huge plastic vat for $30, plus $10 gas. Which I pay for.

5. OK, we make it to the car. And DRIVE back to the BP to fill-up some more. Back into the traffic, which is moving fine. We fly over the bridge and make it to dinner after 6:30pm (there goes the promise of "We'll be there around 5:30").

6. Conversation is going ok until politics come up. Then its Mum and me against Uncle Gary and Dad. I get called a sock and sandal wearer who supports elitist lesbians!! I don't by the way: I support Labour and the a society that looks after itself, not a party that will run this country like a ruthless corporation. Sick of the subject and of being wound up I joined Caitlin for some existential viewing in the lunch (The Nanny Diaries). I left the adults on the parting dig that I was going to de-program my cousin.

Its ok though, because by the end of the evening most of us were down a few glasses of wine (Me, I was down 2 margaritas and 2 glasses of wine...). The conversation turned to other more pleasant things and to dessert, which was strawberries and icecream.
By the time I got home, showered, and booked by preview movie tickets, I was ready for Friday to be over!!

I'm happy to report that Saturday was far less strenuous. I watched a few DVDs, read some magazines. Oh, and flicked through the new Audrey Hepburn book I bought myself as a treat during Xmas shopping on Friday (I got it at 50% off; its by her son and is filled with photos and a timeline of her life). My dinner plans fell through, but no matter as one lively, alcohol fuelled dinner in a weekend is probably all I can handle!

21 November 2008

Twilight... more like Midnight

In 15 minutes I will hit midnight. Yikes! I didn't mean to be this late. This post is spurned on by on of the 13 email in my gmail inbox; I arrived home and checked it a little while ago. There was many interesting pieces of electronic mail, but one in particular that caught my attention was from SkyCity cinemas. It announced in the header: "Twilight exclusive preview parties - book your tickets today!". This comes after an email from a friend today talking about a January 9th release of Twilight for NZ.

For those of you that don't know I have read all four books; I got on the band wagon belatedly, but once I was on I read the books insanely fast. The books are good - I mean I am a huge fan of vampires in the media hehe. The writing is simple - its for a teen market after all, and there are things I could criticise but I won't! In the end, I was as hooked as the next person, and found myself in a reading war with another girl at work (ed: a reading war is far less violent than actual war)!

Upon opening the email from SkyCity I did what anyone else in my situation would do - I promptly booked 2 tickets to the December 13th screening (that's way sooner than Jan 9!). I am hoping the friend that got me on to the books and sent me the below exert will be free to come with me, so me can have a huge debriefing session together after the film.

I actually don't need any of the excuses below - I am not ashamed to want to go see the film, but the excuses made me chuckle nonetheless:

From Movie Retriever

Excuse #1: After seeing Let the Right One In* (which is easily one of the coolest and best movies of 2008) and becoming obsessed with HBO's new hit series True Blood** (which has convinced us that there's no word in the English language more fun to say than "Sookie"), you understandably assumed that we're in the middle of some kind of pop culture vampire renaissance, and you didn't want to be left behind like when you refused to watch Buffy the Vampire Slayer*** because it sounded lame.

Excuse #2: Thanks to those jerks at Warner Brothers who shifted the release date of Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince from this Thanksgiving to next July, your deadly-serious J.K. Rowling addiction has you tweaking worse than a junkie on A&E's Intervention, and the only possible cure is pretending that Twilight is about the after-life adventures of Cedric Diggory (Twilight's Robert Pattinson played Diggory in Goblet of Fire) who, after he was murdered by Voldemort, apparently became a vampire and transferred to a marginally less-dangerous high-school in the Pacific Northwest.

Excuse #3: Forget about the kid-vampire stuff. You're just a big fan of Twilight's director Catherine Hardwicke, ranging back to her days as a production designer - she designed Tapeheads, I'm Gonna Get You Sucka, and Tombstone! - to her more-recent career as a big-time director, helming movies like Thirteen and Lords of Dogtown. (OK, she's a much better designer than director, but what are you going to do?)

Excuse #4: Right after Hardwicke directed the Oscar-nominated youngster Keisha Castle-Hughes (who so ruled in Whale Rider) in 2006's The Nativity Story, the teenager became pregnant and gave birth to her first child at the age of seventeen. So, as a fan of schaenfreude, you just have to see Twilight because, who knows, maybe Kristen Stewart will go all goth or start dating Marilyn Manson afterwards. (It's probably too much to hope that she actually thinks she's turning into a vampire, right? Sure, it would be great TMZ fodder, but it’s probably looking less like Kate Beckinsale in Underworld and more like Nic Cage in Vampire's Kiss, don't ya think?)

Excuse #5: Either just come out and say that you're a HUGE fan of Stephenie Meyer - possibly qualifying with smaller lies like "I read the books with my teenaged niece" or "I'm trying to start a youth book group at our local library" - or try to convince your more film-literate friends that you just love Twilight's screenwriter Melissa Rosenberg, who has written for Dexter**** (very cool), The O.C. (less cool), and Dr. Quinn: Medicine Woman (Oh Dear Lord) and who also wrote the screenplay for 2006's dance-battle epic Step Up, which... OK, just say she wrote for Dexter and leave it at that.

Excuse #6: You're a cougar, and your group of Samantha-from-Sex-in-the-City-worshipping gal-pals are interested in checking out the new Hollywood meat, i.e. sexy vamp 22-year-old Robert Pattinson. WARNING: If you are a dude, this excuse does not work for you. Gathering a group of brohams to go scope out 18-year-old Kristen Stewart - whom you've had a crush on since Zathura - is very, very creepy. Yes, we know that's a double-standard, but we're just trying to keep you off the sex offender list. Please be careful.

Watch the trailer on You Yube here (I admit, it looks FAB!!! I have tingles)

*I got given the book last Xmas and saw 'Let the Right One In' at the film fest this year. Haunting.
**Loving True Blood!! I am a huge fan of the book series and now I am addicted to the show. I watched episode 11 this week - HUGE reveal. I am both excited and sad as I wait for the 12th and final season 1 episode.
***I was there at the beginning. The name is half the fun!
****Fucking cool show. A little bird tells me that we have the first few season 3 episodes of Dexter to watch :)

20 November 2008

How did November get here??

This year is almost over, which is crazy!

Not a huge amount to report, except:

*Concerts: Kings of Leon are coming BACK (January, I have tickets). RYAN ADAMS & THE CARDINALS are coming BACK (February, I WILL have tickets, oh yes I will). Metronomy are playing at the Kings Arm's (thinking of going).

*Work: super busy. Trying to get on top of things ready for the new year.

*Christchurch: I decided to visit A&P in CHCH over the first weekend in December. I am looking forward to hanging with them :)

*Laptop: I finally got a new laptop! I love it. Its another HP (its an entertainment model with lots of fancy things I haven't worked out yet. I did teach it to listen to me and I can control it by talking! Crazy shit!).

I am totally distracted right now (watching 'Breaking Bad'. I love 'Weeds', and 'Breaking Bad' is like 'Weeds' on Meth!!).

I'll right something more cohesive later.

03 November 2008

Albums Galore

Heaven is a Ryan Adams album. The latest, Cardinology, is proudly mine as of 1:30pm today. I fed it straight into my laptop at work, put my headphones on, and tried to concentrate on actual work!

There are 12 tracks – at 40 minutes it’s a little short (a 3 hours Ryan Adam’s album would be too short for me!).

I think this is my favourite album from RA & The Cs so far! The music and lyrics are sublime; some songs are gentle, others twangy, some are quiet ('Cobwebs' is beautiful), and some have a U2 like quality (other reviews have made similar comparisons).

This week I also treated myself to the new Bloc Party and to the 2007 album The Boxer, by The National. I am impressed by both! I am loving Bloc Party more and more each album. There is no disappointment whatsoever.