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Lifestyle/Movies/Reviews

“Hitman’s Bodyguard” shows comedy-drama balance

The “Hitman’s Bodyguard” is the type of movie that you see when your first or maybe even second film option at the theater is sold out, that you are shockingly surprised that you enjoyed. The formula for the film is pretty basic one rule-breaking wildcard character (Samuel L. Jackson’s hitman Darius Kincaid) and the other an uptight, by-the-book character (Ryan Reynolds’ bodyguard Michael Bryce). So as you could guess the film forces the two opposite personalities together, and they must find a way to get along to make it to the end of the film. Bryce a former top bodyguard who slips from the top option after he allows a high-profile client died on his watch. Kincaid a criminal that is temporarily released from jail to be a case winning witness in a trial against Vladislav Dukhovich (Gary Oldman). A corrupt dictator of Belarus. Bryce is given the job of… Keep Reading

Lifestyle/Performing Arts

Chamber Composition Concert impresses with new compositions

In my visits to PAC events, I have experienced the experimental and the positively bizarre more often than I would have ever figured. In contrast, I haven’t been to many of the rather ‘normal’ fare events for the PAC. I anticipated the Chamber Composition Concert would be a nice change of pace, and I can tell you that notion was correct. The CCC is a recital series involved with Composition and Digital Arts programs, and has performers to interact with the student conductors to give feedback on and to give life to the compositions, and teaches composers to help their performers grow with their respective instrument amongst other avenues of improvements. According to Dr. Vermillion, who also attended the recital, the concert series has been active for well over 22 years, with a recent incorporation of the Contemporary Music Ensemble dating around 2 years ago. This concert was unlike many… Keep Reading

Lifestyle/Reviews/Video Games

The oddity that is Immortal Redneck

The concept behind Immortal Redneck likely owes its existence to substances or a fever dream. You are the titular redneck, with no given name, and find a warped reality in front of you as you exit from your sarcophagus. Mummified by a cult after a freak golf cart accident in the desert, you find yourself armed and faced with three looming pyramids. As you walk through the sandblasted courtyard of this unnamed land you are greeted by two stone sculptures, and are permitted to enter the center pyramid. At this point, you leave the only straightforward area of the game, and enter the unknown. The abandonment of straightforwardness is necessary for how the game is structured. Immortal Redneck is a Rougue-Lite game, following some of the conventions of randomized play sessions, but leaving behind complete perma-death. The gameplay of Immortal Redneck follows you ascending the pyramids and clearing out the… Keep Reading

Lifestyle/Movies/Reviews

“Logan Lucky”: Witty comedy meets heist thriller

Sometimes in the life of a blue-collar, the world seems out to get you. Sometimes you lose your job, and sometimes you struggle with family relationships and finding more work. Sometimes you attempt to rob a motor speedway with your wounded veteran brother, an incarcerated robber with a penchant for explosives, and the inmate’s two ignorant brothers. Okay, maybe not that last one. In “Logan Lucky,” however, this premise produces a fast-paced and exciting film, directed by Steven Soderbergh and starring Channing Tatum and Adam Driver as brothers Jimmy and Clyde Logan, who find themselves attempting to pull off a massive heist of Charlotte Motor Speedway with the help of some clumsy and empty-headed partners in crime. Soderbergh came out of retirement to direct this picture, which quickly asserts itself as a masterful comedy that achieves laughter through lighthearted and over-the-top performances by its actors while also being able to… Keep Reading

Image courtesy of Disney / Pixar
Lifestyle/Movies/Reviews

Cars 3: Lap of Honor

Cars 2 was completely awful – I think we can all agree on this. As most of the people who spent their time and money on this film left the theater confused and disappointed. Thankfully, Pixar listened to our disappointment and took the time to give Cars a quality third act that could lead to multiple sequels or end the franchise with a great story. Cars 3 conveniently forgets that Cars 2 ever existed (thankfully) and takes us back to what we originally loved about the first film – racing. We get to see Lightning McQueen doing what he loves to do best which is leaving his opponents in the dust. Lightning McQueen (Owen Wilson) now a seven-time Piston Cup winning legend is suddenly overshadowed by a newcomer named Jackson Storm (Armie Hammer), who’s cutting-edge technology and statistical analysis allows him to be faster and stronger than any other car.… Keep Reading

Lifestyle/Video Games

Microtransactions Become Increasingly Commonplace

In the last 10 years, the success of smartphones surged users interest in free and inexpensive gaming options for their new devices. During this time it became widely known that some of the most popular games were free to download. This created a widespread appeal for games like Jetpack Joyride that while simple, proved addicting. Through a process of selling in-app purchases, or “microtransactions” players had the opportunity to purchase items for their character that they could otherwise not unlock without significant play time. Since its release in 2011, Jetpack Joyride still generates an estimated $2500 daily from microtransactions according to thinkgaming.com. Revenue like this proved significant, causing the business model to be adopted by many free to play games on mobile devices and computers. Games like League of Legends and DOTA 2 are among the most popular in the world and have been successful utilizing a microtransactions model in… Keep Reading

Lifestyle/Reviews

“Disjointed”: More Like Disappointed

The new workplace comedy, Disjointed directed by Chuck Lorre and David Javerbaum, was just recently added to Netflix’s collection of original series and is getting quite the amount of attention. This may be because of how shockingly humiliating this show is, being under Netflix’s name, who has been known for making hit series such as House of Cards and Stranger Things. For those looking for cheap plot lines, improper acting, and multiple tacky jokes regarding cannabis, this show is for you. Disjointed, follows Ruth Whitefeather Feldman (played by Kathy Bates) an advocate for cannabis all of her life, finally making her dream a reality by opening her own marijuana dispensary in Los Angeles called Ruth’s Alternative Caring. There she is accompanied by her college graduate son Travis (played by Aaron Moten) and her three “budtenders” to help her run the shop and help those in need in order to spread… Keep Reading

Lifestyle/Reviews

“IT”: Pennywise is back and more terrifying than ever

“IT” – known as being one of the most timeless horror stories in history, was brought to life on the big screen this past Thursday in movie theaters across the country. Director Andy Muschietti, alongside the king of horror himself Stephen King, who wrote the original book in 1986, made the recent adaption thrilling, petrifying, and engaging. For those not familiar with the story, it follows the seven young underdogs, stuttering Ben Denbrough (played by Jaeden Lieberher), new kid Ben Hanscom (played by Jeremy Ray Taylor), witty Richie Tozier (played by Finn Wolfhard), nervous Mike Hanlon (played by Chosen Jacobs), anxious Eddie Kaspbrak (played by Jack Dylan Grazer), smart Stanley Uris (played by Wyatt Oleff), and brave Beverly Marsh (played by Sophia Lillis), as they try to hunt down the entity that’s stealing children in their town, including Ben’s younger brother, George Denbrough (played by Jackson Robert Scott). The entity… Keep Reading

Dracula 2000: Modern missed stakes

For previous readers of this column, you may have noticed a curious similarity between this movie and one I have previously covered: Dracula 3000. While they are similar in concept, having Dracula appear in the era and year in the film’s title, but that is the furthest down the road of similarity they both will go. Dracula 2000 is set in the titular year, and was an attempt to bring Dracula into the modern era. My word choice of ‘attempt’ is very specific, for outside glances toward the film may give you the impression that it is a quality production. I will concede to the points of good set design, good supporting actors, and decent pacing of scenes. However, there is a reason the film is on the autopsy table today and I aim to dig in and find out the failing parts that ultimately relegated the film to being… Keep Reading

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