Thisby Thestoop and the Black Mountain

It’s fair to say that I read a good number of books children’s books. Having kids of my own, I like to pilfer their shelves from time to time. In our house, we like to stock “the classics” as a sort of quality guarantee. Since children’s books became a genre there have been writers who have tried to cash in on the children’s market as a way to make a quick buck with little effort. Reading “the classics” means that you get the best books from every era without having to wade through the formulaic twaddle, most of which has mercifully been forgotten over the years.
It’s a different story with modern children’s books. Picking up a new children’s book means taking a chance on wasting your time, and the modern children’s book publishing machine loves tried and true formulas. After the success of Harry Potter we got books about schools for magical/mythological/specially talented kids who are sorted into groups based on their personalities. After The Hunger Games took off, we’ve have had m…

Best Visual Effects

Okay. So I'm watching the Academy Awards last night. The category is Best Visual Effects. A city was created and virtuallly destroyed for the Dark Knight, as Batman leaps and glides his way above the rooftops, and the Joker wreaks havoc. A man was encased in metal and sent flying after jets, shooting missiles in Iron Man.

And the Oscar for Best Visual Effects goes to...The Curious Case of Benjamin Button!

What?! Wait a minute! The best visual effect of the entire year was to make Brad Pitt look old!? Seriously?! Hasn't Hollywood been making people look old as long as movies have been made? I remember an episode of Star Trek where they made William Shatner look old. Star Trek didn't get an Oscar. Twin Peaks didn't get an award for making Kyle McLachlan look old. Eddie Murphy is either old, fat, or female in all of his movies and they never get a Visual Effects nod.

*Sigh* I'll never understand the Academy Awards.

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