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Subterranean500 Blog

3 months summer break/study period.

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Today, I had my exam in Approaches to Historical Archaeology. An exam that consists of a 10 minute presentation and 20 minutes, where the teachers asks you questions, based on everything you've learned during the semester. The exams at the university are a lot tougher than during high school (least if you ask me), because you are asked to remember a great deal of things, in your head, both for the oral and written exams. That said, the teachers at the oral exams are usually very nice to help a student out, if they get lost during the presentations... anyway I'm getting side tracked here. The point is, I passed with a 4 (which is the third best grade), which pleases me. It means I only have to focus on studying for one exam, rather than two. Better find something else to do during those 3 months though.

Well that's quite an absence

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So it's been... what, almost two years since my imposed blog retirement? Not quite what I expected, when I said I'd take a break. :P In any case, I shall try to be back for a little while, to see how the Gamespot community has been in my absence. :) How ya been, guys? :) Personally, it's been full of ups and downs. When I took my break, it had only been around two weeks since me and my girlfriend had broken up (which in hindsight is both my fault, and a bit of her's too), and it shattered me completely, unsurprisingly. I also managed to lose both my cat, and my grandmother (though my grandmother's death was last year, not in 2011). In positive news however, I graduated from the Gymnasium (the Danish equivalent to high school), and I have (somehow) sucessfully enrolled at the University of Copenhagen, just a few months after, where I am studying Archaeology (with a focus in the Near East). It's quite different from High School, given that there's a lot to read and prepare for every class, and the exams basically doesn't allow you to have notes with them (like previously). So far, it's going great, with the exception of a failed exam a month ago (which I have to retake in August, meaning I'll miss the field school this year, but be able to join it next year), and the people I'm in class with (as well as people in other classes) are very nice to hang around with. I don't think I've ever been that social, lol. But enough about me, how have you guys been? :)

Transformers 3: Dark of the Moon review

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Back with some reviews. Making a movie on Transformers, a live action one that is, sounds ridicilous, because... well it's action toys for kids. But surprisingly it worked. The first one was surprisingly good, epic and entertaining, and started off the movie franchaise. Then of course they had to dumb it down for Revenge of the Fallen (which the Razzies were quick to pick up on). Now we're here with Dark of the Moon (Weird title... soudns like one of the words went missing), and it can only be better than the last one... right? Well to explain the first disappointment: there's no Pink Floyd tracks from Dark Side of the Moon being played, at all (fuuuuuuuuuuuuuuu)

Ya know why America wanted to send their own people to space so badly? It was because something mysterious crashed on the moon, and they wanted to investigate it, meaning the whole Soviet space arms thingy was a cover up! What landed was a spaceship, called The Ark, which escaped from Cypertron, while they were at war. The ship contained something called "The Pillars", that could have saved Cypertron... that and it can defy all the rules of time and gravity as we know it. The decepticons wants to get the pillars, so they can transport Cypertron to earth and restore it, while the autobots seek to help the humans, and stop the decepticons. Meanwhile, Sam Witwicky (Shia LaBeouf) who has saved the world with the autobots twice, finds himself with a new girlfriend, Carly (Rosie Huntington-Whiteley), and without a job. Eger to make a difference, he wants to help the autobots save the world, though of course, the goverment won't let him.

Let me start out by saying, that The Pillars isn't our Deus Ex Machina, and there isn't anything that is even close to being as stupid as reviving Sam at the end of Revenge of the Fallen. It actually has more story than the previous ones ever did. Though for a series that's in it's 3rd sequel, it's kind of late to asking us to feel emotionally engaged to what's going on. The movie does at least try to act like it's going to kill off some of the characters, but it doesn't quite works because... well it's for kids and teenagers, and they would normally refuse to kill off characters. (and to put a note here, I am aware that the original transformers animated movie was a oil steamed blood bath). The focus on the story also allows it to be a bit darker than previously, though there's still plenty of humor to go around.

And that's also one of the problems. The first hour is pretty uneven. One minute it has a few dark scenes, follow up by some humerous scenes. It removes some of the dark feeling and tension the movie's aiming for. On the other hand, the humor si better than before. Gone are the two annoying robots (I forgot their names, and am too lazy to look them up), and Sams parents aren't having so much screen time either, which is always a 100% win.

After the first hour though, the story somewhat get's reduced to just being an excuse to get people form one place to another. That's where the some plot holes starts appearing, but that's also where it get's kick ass. Everything after the 1st hour feels like serveal epic battle scenes just happening. It's pretty awesome to see, and even a bit impressive in a few places. The final hour, which takes place in Chicago, is defaintly epic as hell. Just one epic battle scene after another, with minor story in them, which doesn't bog down things for once.

That however also has a problem. As good as the action scenes are in Chicago, it drags on. After the 5 or 6th battle or something, I was just thinking (yea it's awesome, but when does it end!?). The movie is 2 hours and 34 minutes long, and it's way too long. I guess the movie knew that though, because when the battles are over, so is the film. Seriously, after the battles, Sam & Carly share a few brief seconds, and it just ends. Quickest ending ever.

The acting was decent, a small improvement over the 2nd. Shia is awesome as ever, and has some really funny "furious" scenes. Rosie is a much better actor than Megan Fox, and looks even better (bonus points for british accent). Hell, she's even useful at least once, though she does have a few scenes where she just stands, staring, doing nothing, like she doesn't know what the hell she should do.

The 3D was decent. It didn't feel tagged on as in so many other movies surprisingly. It didn't work quite like Avatar worked with 3D, but it's one of the better movies in 3D. The music was okay. It helps add some epicness, but it just felt too much like they heavily reused parts of the music from the 1st and 2nd movie. There's even one tune that is flat out a copy of the Mind Hiest track from the Inception trailers. That was stupid.

To sum it all up: Transformers: Dark (Side) of the Moon was pretty entertaining. The additional story focus was nice, and the action was way better than the 2nd one. It has a lot of really sweet action scenes, and a lot of good laughs. Though it's also obvious that some thigns doesn't work, like the uneven first hour, and how it just drags out, as well as some other flaws.

7/10

Taking a break

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I have even more homework to deal with now x.x That sadly means I'm taking a break from blogging. I'll still upload reviews every once in a while, but sadly, it's time for a break.

Hope to return soon!

The Pacific miniseries

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Anyone ever saw Band of Brothers? It's a brilliant show about a unit of soldiers during WW2. I loved it. It was realistic, the characters were likeable and it just managed to show how horrific the war were. Though honestly, we've had way too many movies, shows and what not about WW2, and it's time to leave that behind... at lesat fromthe European part. What I always wonder about, is why they never focus on The Pacific side, the war against the japanese. Well the procues and creators of Band of Brothers aparrently had the same thoughts as me, and finally made a show abut The Pacific.

Explaining the story in this can take a long while, but it should be easy to figure out it's about some of the soldiers who's voulenterring for the war against the Japanese. The stories that's being told are pretty good. The characters are actually very likeable and the emotional attachment is pretty high to them as well. Their also realistic, like in Band of Brothers, telling what they went through and going through their emotions and how the war changes them. I wouldn't say it get's touching, but it can get really sad, and thre's a lot of sad and dark moments, but also some funny moments. some might say the show has a lot of dark humour (like one scene has the soldiers laughing at a soldier who was abot to take a dumb, then almost got killed by the japanese), but in war they have to laugh over something that's insane, it just proves that their human. They say that during the show too.

Not all of the stories are about the war though. there is a episode which sees the characters having a vacation in australia. It doen't have any battles, but it's a fun and emotional episode. Having a lot of funny moments, but also some sad and emotioanl moments.

The battles were realistic too, and like Band of Brothers their really good at showing the tragedy. How horrible and brutal these fights were and how it affects people. It got me a little emotional everytime these fight broke out (or well, at least the ver big and brutal ones). But their also shot really well. There's this fight at Peleliu, which is almost shot entirely in a long take, it's beautiful.

The music really helps driving home the emotional parts and the brutality of the war. It's composd by Hans Zimmer (with Geoff Zanelly & Blake Neely) and it's really wonderful. It should be on iTunes and CD, so I suggest to give it a look.

The show isn't without it's faults though. Finding out who you shuold care about can be a problem. It wasn't until episode 4 I figured out who the main characters were. Also, the transition from emotional moments/episodes to episodes with lots of fighting, isn't as smooth as you could have hoped. Episode 9 for example has a lot of brutal fighting and dark moments, and it's followed up by a emotional moment abou the end of the war, with no fighting.

Yet for it's small faults, The Pacific is an amazing show. It lives up perfectly to Band of Brothers, and is overall a memorable experience. For people who's tired of WW2, or love it, or just lookin for a great show, should really consider seeing The Pacific.

9/10

Review of... Twilight! :o

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I saw a lot of movies when I was in america (though some of them when I was on the plane), so I decided I'm gonna talk about some of them. But before we do that, I wanna review a certain movie... Twilight! :o I was always curious to see it. Just because of how popular and how unpopular it is among people. Lots of people love it, but lots of people hate it too, and constantly go on and on about how bad the movie is. So I decided to see it for myself, to see how it is.

Everyone knows the story, but I have to go through this. Bella (Kirsten Stewart) is a teenager, who recently to Forks, a small town in Washington. Here she starts on a new school, meeting new friends and is slowly becoming popular. However, she becomes intrigued by the Cullens. A family, that's unusually pale. She tries to know more about them, but is constantly told off by Edward (Robert Pattinson). Eventually though, they become friends and she uncovers that their vampires, and that leads to trouble...

The story is... rushed. I never read the book, but it looks like they skipped a lot of information. Scenes comes and goes, small build up, and not much substance in it. Not a lot happens in it either. It starts out boring, and the characters never really face any real dangerous threat. Sure there's the other gang of vampires who's going aroud killing humans, but even they don't provide with much, even being friendly near the end. The character development isn't really that great either, but it's not too bad though. You can sense, that the movie is at least trying to make the whole subject matter (and especially the "shiny" vampires) more creditable, but it doesn't really succed.

And there's a lot of reasons for that. The acting isn't paticularly good, especially Kirsten Stewart. At first, you might think she's supposed to act like that (uninterested and shy), but even during the emotional scenes, she sounds like she doesn't give a damn. It didn't kill the movie, but it sure as hell killed some creditbility. At least Robert and the other's acting were decent. The directing was horrible too. Too often, the camera cuts between serveal camera placements, in mere seconds, as if they spent hours recording the scenes and then tried to use them all. It's clumsy. Special effects are horrible too. Whenever the vampires move fast, they all enter motion blur country, which is quite odd.

However, and this is the surprising part... Twilight is not a bad movie. It's boring at first yea, but when it get's going, it's actually... tolerable. It's decent entertainment. It has a few good moments, like the baseball scene, and I have to admit, the concept of a human being in love with a vampire, is interesting. It brings a Romeo & Juliet feeling too it... at least it tries. And the various conflicts with such, could be intersting.

So in the end. Twilight isn't a bad movie, but it's not a good one either. It's badly acted, badly directed and edited, but it's tolerable and at least a little entertaining. It's not a movie I'd reconmend, but if your zapping through your TV during a boring night, and nothing else is on by Twilight, then you'll at least be wathcing something decent. It's a movie that a lot of people will find stupid. I found it stupid, but I found it at least, a little believeable... though only slighty.

6-7/10

I'm back, but slow

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I came back from america back on tuesday. Getting there was a pain. My plane from Copenhagen to Frankfurt was delayed by half an hour, so I missed my plane to Boston. So I had to wait hours to get my ticket changed, then they gave me a hotel vouncher, so I could stay for free at a hotel until the following day... only for the bus to the hotel taking hours to arrive. -.- It was a good trip though, and I miss I could come back ,mostly because I miss my girlfriend :(

Being back also means school started again, so I'm gonna be busy with that -/-

Tron: Legacy review

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Looks like it's gonna be a white christmas :D too bad the snow's messing with the traffic and airplanes. It better get sorted out by saturday, so I can go to USA -.- Anyway, airport issues and the fact that the danish handball team ended on a 4th place (after they started by winning 5 matches in a row, then lost 3 in a row), it's time to talk about Tron: Legacy. I never saw the original, so I only wanted to see one, because it looked entertaining.

In 1989, Kevin Flynn (Jeff Bridges) tells his 8 year old son, Sam (Garret Hedlund) about "The Grid", a virtual world that exists inside a computer system. Being excited to take him there one day, Kevin leaves his son, to go to work on "The Grid", promising an arcade trip with Sam... Kevin obviously never returns. 21 years later, Sam is older, playing pranks with Encom (Kevin's company who designed Tron) and wanting to upload Tron for free, get's a notice about a signal coming from the old arcade house. Going there, he finds his father's secret work station and manages to enter "The Grid", which turns out to be under control of Clu (Jeff Bridges). He finds his father and now has to get back to the real world, with Kevin and Quorra (Olivia Wilde).

I wonder what's up with screenwriters and nazi's this year. First Harry Potter fought magical nazi's and now we're watching a film about nazi's in the digital world, geez. The story is crap. It's predictable as hell, and both the characters and the world are underdeveloped, so you never really care about any of it. There are moments in the beginning that shows all those crazy Grid games you've probably been hearing about, but their only featured once, and you'd end up wishing they were featured a bit more.

Quorra was useless. She's just there, and doesn't really contribute anything, other than just standing there and looking pretty. It does have a few plot holes too, especially the ending (which I can't spoil), which was incredibly stupid.

That being said, as crappy as the story is, it is a entertaining movie. The action is well done, and the effects are beautiful, so you'll get treated to some beautiful eye candy. The effects are far from perfect though. Clue is essentially a younger (digital) version of Kevin, and it's painfully obvious at times to see that his face is digitally de-aged. It doesn't look ugly or anything, it's just obvious.

The 3D was good, but oddly enough, parts of the film has been filmed in 2D, which is certainly odd. When I pay to see a film in 3D, it should all be in 3D, not just certain parts of the film. To be honest, the film does say this in advance, but it's still pretty odd. Some might say that it's like that, because they wanted to focus the 3D in "The Grid" and 2D for the real world, but even during "The Grid", I found some parts to be in 2D. It feels like a bit of a rip off in the end.

Usually, I never really comment on the soundtrack to the film, but the advertising has made such a big deal of Daft Punk creating the soundtrack (you know, the guys with hits like "Harder, Better, Faster, Stronger" & "Alive"). I'm not a fan, but seeing someone from the (somewhat) underground electronic scene, making a big leap to movies, is always a thrilling thing. Sadly though, Daft Punk's music sounds like a somewhat generic movie score, with a few electronic elements in, you know the thing you hear from Harry Gregson-Williams, Hans Zimmer, and so forth. It's a good score mind you, but I hoped they'd infuse some more electronic elements into the tracks, which is sadly not happening.

Over all, Tron: Legacy is entertaining. It passes the time and it looks beautiful, but as a film that's a sequel to a cult cla$$ic, Tron: Legacy probably won't be remembered in a few years time, mostly due to it's cliché story, underdevelopment. Not even for it's effects, which still can't beat Avatar.

8/10

Never cout on danish sports teams...

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They can't win anything. :P In the european championship, they won over a lot of teams surpremely, then they lose one unimportant match and they lose the semi finals :P Typical danish teams, lose one match and they lose everything. :P

Anyway, it's finally time for christmas break, and only a week left til I leave for USA. So excited, I just hope we don't get so much snow, that everything will get cancelled. Going to see Tron: Evolution tomorrow, will review that.

So Helostwin asked in the comments on my last blog how I celebrate christmas. What I (danes and europeans) do is this:

We put the christmas tree in the middle of the room, put presents underit. Eat christmas dinner, then desert, then we dance (or well, hold hands, form a circle and walk around) aroudn the christmas tree, singing songs. Then we open presents... this happens on the evening/night of the 24th.

almost christmas :D

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It's almost christmas (10 days, if you live in Europe and not England or america). I always look forward to christmas, because of presents and just of vacation in general. Gonna visit my girlfriend in 11 days too, and will be celebrating christmas with them (of course, after I celebrate it with my own family :P). So what's a guy supposed to do until then? concentrate on his homework.

reason for absence the last few days? Homework -.- I've had serveal asignments to turn in, it was all... meh! :P I got done with them all though, maintaining a perfect record of turning in all asignments so far. :P