Transformers

DSC_0096

Transformers.

Status: getting better. still struggling to pry myself off the sheets in the morning, but I’m on the mend. Tonight I’m going to do my Usual Friday Thing and sleep right through with no early morning alarm to interrupt me. That typically means anywhere from nine to twelve hours. Good grief.

Writing.

Had my best day yet yesterday. Was able to get into the flow and produce not only a respectable word count, but also something which is usable. So, I think I’m getting the hang of this process. The new morning routine is working well – rather than getting up and just starting right away, I’m beginning my day like I’m actually going to work. So, get up, food, shower, get dressed, meditate and then sit down at my desk to start writing. I needed to be very honest with myself, getting up and going straight to my desk wasn’t working – I wasn’t awake enough to focus and concentrate, and all my mind wanted to do was ease into the day with some passive engagement, i.e. reading or watching fuckin’ YouTube. This new routine is allowing me a little bit of space to wake up fully and find my center before starting to work – it’s much more effective.

Eliminating Distractions.

Two other add-ons which I’m finding helpful: turning my phone on Mute and then placing it face down on the desk top just out of arms reach. I’ve decided I’m only going to check the phone at specific intervals during the day (so, if you need to get me urgently, you’re S.O.L.). The second is using my ear-buds to diminish the ambient noise around me. I’m finding that the isolation helps me access the headspace where my daydreams live which is allowing me to get into the flow more easily/effectively.

Site Blockers.

One other piece I’d like to incorporate into this Creative Safe Space (heh, fuck) is to install a Net Nanny of sorts which will block access to sites from my browser. Noted that author John Green installed a plug-in on his browser to block all social media sites – he’s attempting to detox from social media for one whole year. I’m not going to do anything as drastic, but I would like to block the usual suspects, like YouTube, for blocks of time during the day. Say, 7-11am and then again from 1-5pm. Let’s see how that works.

Ok, time to get on with it……..

Nikon D3400
1/100 sec
f/5.3
46mm
ISO 100

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Transformers: Age of Extinction (2014) – Movie Review

transformers age of extinction

Michael Bay’s fourth installment of the “Transformers” franchise is certainly going to split critics, fans, and casual movie goers alike. This mostly comes from the fact that “Age of Extinction” is VERY similar to other films by Michael Bay. And by this I mean extremely loud and extremely abundant explosions, at every possible moment. The funniest part of this is that Bay feels no shame in starting this at about the fifteen minute mark, and it does not stop until the films conclusion.

For all its faults, and this film has a fair number of them, it is the first Transformers film where I actually do not want the humans to get stepped on (purposely or “accidentally”). In truth, I actually liked the humans in this film, and cared about what happened to them. Mark Wahlberg’s role is a generic father type character that has been seen dozens of times throughout the history of cinema. However, it is two large steps forward from Shia LaBeouf and his screaming throughout the entire film; “BEE! BUMBLEBEE! OPTIMUS! AHH!” Alongside Walhberg are Nicola Peltz and Jack Reynor. I felt Reynor’s character was sort of bland, and although Peltz is obviously in this film to provide the “hot” female role, she gives a more believable performance than either Megan Fox or the blonde chick from “Dark of the Moon.” The rest of the human characters try do the best they can with the script they are given, and sometimes it works and sometimes it does not. But for the most part, the humans were actually not the weak link in this film.

Sadly, the weak link was actually the special effects. There were times where I was rolling my eyes at the CGI, or cringing at the “Shaky-Cam” that was added to a number of action shots. The robots in this movie sometimes appear far less real than they did in previous films, and this really needs to be touched up in later films.

Of course, as I’m sure most of you can tell, this movie still focuses a bit too much on the humans. That being said, this film finally has every Autobot speaking and doing something on screen. This is very important, as the film series is called TRANSFORMERS. The characters I care about the most in this series are the Autobots, and one in particular; Optimus Prime. “Age of Extinciton” gives a new way of looking at the iconic leader, as his position is not 100% the same that we have seen in other films. Believe me when I say that there are some moments that you, as a movie goer, will be surprised by how characters, both human and Transformer, react to circumstances that surround them.

All in all, “Age of Extinction” is by no means movie of the year, but it is a fun film. The story is muddled, like in previous films, but it is still a bit more cohesive and believable than, say, “Dark of the Moon.” I personally felt that this was the best Transformer’s film to date, but I know some people will disagree. It is a film that has some moments that truly deserve applause, and others that will anger the audience greatly. Nevertheless, this is a fun summer film. I would recommend seeing this film, but do not expect to it to be a picture perfect movie. If you are willing to let certain things go, I believe that most people will be able to find something fun in “Age of Extinction.”

 

7 out of 10 stars

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