Happy Halloween, Face Time Update, and randome news!

As I type this, Jay and Grant are going underground and we're losing our Live Feed - I'll keep you periodically updated as this goes on.... I think the feed is smoothing out but if we lose it completely, I'll tell you... OR... if it cleans itself up, I'll let you all know.

A cookie goes to those who read "Jay and Grant" and know exactly what I'm talking about. XD

so... before I forget:


I know some of you may not celebrate it, but I figured I'd throw that out there. I'm going to work the Harvest Festival at my church... it should be fun, and a chance to see all the kids in their costumes. If I get pictures, I'll post them.

I'm dressing up as female Waldo - think her name is Wenda. I have most everything... I just need a beanie... I'll post pics of me as well, if I get some. :)

I also want to throw a shout out again to everyone who helped me out last night - I feel so much better now, having washed my hands of the incident. I'm not as angry as I was, and I know that I'm not caring as much because as soon as I started listening to New Kids on the Block, I felt sooooo much better. ((Speaking of NKOTB - apparently, Donnie is sick. :( He hasn't been feeling well, probably a bad cold but being stuck on the road with something like that, constantly getting swarmed by girls, it's gotta suck. So... thoughts out to you Donnie! Feel better! I'm still gettin' my face time you BETTER. BELIEVE. IT. GET AT YOUR GIRL!)) I also watched some HSM 3 music vids and listened to the soundtrack, so yeah, I'm fine today. :)

***UPDATE*** The live feed has leveled out - it's still choppy at moments, but for the most part it's clean. They've cracked out the thermal cam and gone deeper into the tunnels... hahahaha Jay just put his hood on and ran screaming down a tunnel... Grant is laughing at him.

got the pics today... so those of you that read my earlier blog post, here are some of the face time pics!!!!

Kohen, Reese, and Rachel - these three are so adorbs, I love spending time with them!

This girl is soooo sweet - I love my Reeses Piece!

Rachel - she was sooooo little when I started watching her, it's insane to see her all grown up!

KOHEN!!! This boy holds a key to my heart - love this kid! He's so cute and such a boy! I'm fairly certain I've dealt with more things with him than I have in my entire life... haha! He's always good for some laughs!

Group photo! Poor Dax - he's not used to me yet!
But this is a GREAT shot - different expressions from everyone! lol.

So - yeah, it was a great photo shoot. lol. I'm working on a face time album on Facebook... all the people I've met and taken pics with... I don't think I've got pictures of everyone I've gotten facetime with, though... ZOEgirl and Jars of Clay I didn't get... but most everyone else I did. :P So look forward to that, I'll try to post a slide show up here, as well. I have to get ready soon... *sigh* I totally miss my friends, I was thinking of Halloween last year when Randy dressed up as a mormon hahahaha... sorry. Memory lane...

Oh - update on last night - people are still talking to me about it... the "bad" people.... but I'm in a much better place because I simply DON'T. CARE. Hahahaha.

Hannah - *hugs* Again, you make me laugh. w00t. w00t. yah.

Everyone - keep sending me stuff! Love it!! Especially all the NKOTB concert pics you girls are taking! KEEP THEM COMING!!

Alright, I think that's it...

Get ya mind right.


Close To You
New Kids on the Block
The Block

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Why Donnie holds a key to my heart... (shout out to my Phelpsies and Pitsters!)

I am so totally lovin' the wind and rain outside right now, I can't believe I was missing the storm because I was so mad! I'm up late, yeah, but I like listening to the wind blow the rain around. :) It's funny what you catch when you aren't consumed by stupid rage. haha.

This may sound extremely strange to a lot of you - but I really, really, really needed to write this... it was either this, or cry over something really really stupid.

Some of you may know, I'm a fairly large fan of Red Eye w/ Greg Gutfeld... I started watching the show awhile ago and have since joined the forums and chat for the show - I've had chances to chat with a few of the hosts and stuff like that, it's been great... and I normally have a fairly pleasant internet life because I like to keep the peace... but recently, that's been blowing up in my face.

I recently quite writing on the Michael Phelps fan page wall because I was continually getting attacked for asking people to stop fighting - it sounds stupid, but there's really only so much abuse a person can take. I was done getting treated like crap for trying to solve problems... it gets old real fast.

Now, it's been happening on the Pit as well. To give you a run down, Renee used the word holocaust - in case you all are wondering, there is, in fact, a difference between holocaust and The Holocaust. I promise.

Anyway, someone decided to take offense to it... no big, I can see how there can be a mix up, even if this person went WAY. OVERBOARD. Someone in my community (goes by Viper) quickly assessed the situation and attempted to diffuse it by posting the definition of the word and stating that there was a difference, and that Renee meant no disrespect by it... at which point the problem should have been solved.

But it wasn't... this person decided to still freak out, telling Viper that he was playing cute, when he knew full well Renee was a racist... which doesn't fly well. I happen to talk to Renee a lot, because she was one of the first people that welcomed me to The Pit, taught me the ins and outs, and encouraged me to talk to Bill Schulz for the first time... and I know she is NOT a racist. As if that wasn't bad enough, she proceeded to go get more people to come and attack Renee... the whole blew out of control by the time I got there - at which point I addressed the situation, telling people that it wasn't Renee's fault that they took offense to a word that has a written definition. The thread got closed shortly after, and it should have been over.

But no. These people proceeded to go to Renee's page and leave her nasty comments on her page... I found this out when I went to go leave her a comment... and I'm sorry but that's considered TROLLING in my book, and that's not okay. I couldn't figure out for the life of me why a mod hadn't jumped on it and taken care of it. I was going to leave it alone, until I saw a "kind little comment" by a user who had NOTHING to do with the convo. NOTHING. She was just recruited by the Pit bully to attack Renee. And she clearly had no idea what was going on - so I sent her a comment, asked her to read the thread before she attacked Renee, so that she would know what we were fighting about.

I was still FINE by this point. I was NOT okay when the Pit Bully left nasty comments on my page, calling me an attack dog that was playing dumb and attacking other people, and insulting them... called me irrational and unreasonable.

That may not sound like much to you, but to me, that's major... I HATE getting accused of things I DIDN'T do, and I HATE being told I'm irrational... I'd like to think I'm not... I mean, it's kind of important to the whole peace keeper image to not be irrational and irresponsible. I always put a lot of thought into my posts, and I make sure I weigh all sides of an argument before responding - I'll even do research if I have to. So, to be called irrational by a person who can't be bothered to open a dictionary gets under my skin somethin' aweful. ((The only thing that gets me mad faster is when someone tells me I don't know anything because I'm too young.)) It was just INSULTING, and as stupid as it probably sounds to you, it hurt.

To add insult to injury, this person then went to an admin and complained that he was leaving the pit because of a "certain group of people..." and we knew who he was talking about. To be complained about to an ADMIN for no reason - it's like getting sent to the principle's office for trying to put out a trashcan fire. So I fired back. I responded as such:

You know, I don't think that's entirely fair... what about those of us that feel attacked as well?? I got my rump handed to me by *PIT BULLY'S NAME* today because he felt he needed to teach me a lesson for something that really had nothing to do with him...

Someone posted on Renee's page about something that didn't involve her, and *PBN* extended a thank you to them. I went and defended Renee - was not coaxed to do so - and Renee says nothing to me - yet we're the bad guys?

I get accused of sticking my nose into something that doesn't involve me, when in fact I was the second person to post on the thread in question... I was a part of that before they were... when they bring people in from the outside that have absolutely NOTHING to do with anything, and we're the ones in the wrong?

We decide to be the bigger people and not leave - we decide to put up with all of their crap... because we know that there's more to stay for... they decide to make a scene and leave, making it a point to point out WHY they're leaving, and WE'RE the problem makers?

Pardon my french, but that to me is BULLCRAP. If anyone should be complaining, it should be us, (which I finally am).

And what do you think happened?? Pit Bully got a slap on the wrist, and the mod posts a lame response which is more directed at me than at the person causing real problems.

I was so mad I could spit... you have no idea... I was just soooo mad... I wanted to cry. I had tears of anger welling up, on the verge of spilling out... In less than an hour, someone had taken a place I enjoy, and made me despise even saying it's name.

And this is where Donnie comes in...

I find it ABSOLUTELY amazing how I can be so angry I could spit, on the verge of tears, and reading one little blog can put a sure fire smile on my face. (I also find it amazing how I just said "sure fire" and LOVED how it sounded. haha)

"The crowds are getting better and better and better. How is this happening???? This is not normal on a tour... Especially in the YouTube era!!!!!! You all are supposed to get bored…. You are supposed to lose interest…. You are supposed to let up… You all are supposed to stop screaming!!!!! How do you keep amazing us night after night????? I am humbled every time I lift up onto that stage! I am amazed every time the cameras flash! I am moved almost to tears every time you all sing every word to I’ll Be Loving You Forever!"

(To read the whole blog, click HERE ... and I AM coming for my face time! It's GONNA happen! GET AT YOUR GIRL!)

I can't put it into words, I just love reading his blog updates. They're all a hoot to read - Joey and Jon usually bring the most laughs, but Donnie's are my favorite. I absolutely love how much he loves us... and his blogs always make me smile. I said earlier to someone else, despite his bad boy image, he seems like a really sweet guy... and everyone on the community that's met him supports that.... but I can't fully express why that made me smile... I can just say that for whatever reason, I went to check out the blog when I was upset, read that, and didn't realize till I was done that I was smiling. :)

On top of that, my Phelpsies totally had my back, too!! Big shout out to Ana - girl, your comment TOTALLY made my day! :) "It's Kick A that (the Wahlberg brothers) have a fan like you!"

And Patricia - you're right, cyber spitting on people IS fun!! Hahaha, you made me laugh with your convo, girl! "Hauck it back and spit at their imaginarry faces!! I love the idea ur on the titanic even and the r down below in the row boat and u can spit all over them lmao!!"

Sarah - you're right... I shouldn't let it get to me, it's really stupid to get upset over something like that... even if I win a fight with a keyboard, I'm still retarded, right??? *hugs* Thanks for listening to me rant!!

Hannah - true - at least we aren't crybaby pee pants... OR immature! HA! thank you so much for your comment - you have no idea what it meant to me to have someone say I am not only rational and responsible, but the most rational and responsible person they know! :)

Amber, Lizeth, and Liza - thanks for letting me rant, and giving me your input! I feel so much better!

Renee - let them do their worst. As long as we don't leave, we're that much better than them. We're just gonna have to take the high road... and when that fails, we'll spam our way to ban land! HAHAHA! (just kidding) let them bring it!! We can take it!

All of you rock. I realize I'm really stupid to have gotten so upset over all of this, but... my buttons were totally pushed, and I wasn't really thrilled about the outcome... so I probably won't be tagging anyone in this blog, just because it's more of a rant and if you want to comment go ahead, but I'm not going to force anyone to read it... hahaha.

But if you did actually read all of this - Say hi to your mother for me.

Get ya mind right... and save the drama for your mama! ((Just for you, Amber! HA!))


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High School Musical 3: Senior Year - was it an ending worth remembering?

You bet your bottom it was!!

I was pulled into the High School Musical phenomena a little late - when the movie premiered, I wasn't thrilled. I thought it was a stupid idea... but then my friends and I watched it at a sleep over or something, and I was immediately pulled in.

I despised Troy at first... Zac Efron was, in my book, not all he was cracked up to be - he couldn't act very well, and his singing was NOT my taste. But for the most part, the characters were great, the film was cheesy, and the songs were catchy with fun dance scenes. It reminded me very much of the old Disney Channel Movies I watched growing up - you know... before, when they were good? I quickly became a fan, learning all the songs and most of the dance steps... I anticipated the second one... and with Zac Efron making his big screen debut on Hairspray, proving he could not only sing and act, but that he was also HOT... and once I found out that it wasn't really him singing in HSM, I was pretty much a fan.

But, when High School Musical 2 hit tv screens across america, I was mildly dissappointed. Yes, it was JUST as cheesy as the first, but it seemed like they were trying to do too much, make it too abstract. It had some catchy songs, but the feel was less natural, more Moulin Rouge than anything. Don't get me wrong, I love Moulin Rouge, but High School Musical was a different beast and it didn't feel right shooting it with the same abstractness as MR. But it was good enough. What really killed me was the idea of making a third, and releasing it in theaters. Among rumours of making the theme "The Haunted High School Musical," I was also upset about the idea of Disney milking HSM for all it was worth. I felt they were killing it.

I was against the idea of a third before I even finished the second one... but that was quickly changed when I saw the first trailer. As with any other musical, the songs will usually pull me in... and after a while I really wanted to see it!

So - making a decision to see High School Musical 3 INSTEAD of Max Payne, I streamed the soundtrack and made myself familiar with the songs... I didn't get to listen to it all, familiarizing myself only with "Now or Never," "I Want It All," "A Night to Remember," and "High School Musical." As was assumed, "I Want It All," Sharpay and Ryan's duet, was my favorite - the two were my favorite characters and had succeeded at producing a catchy, memorable number in each of the previous movies... "I Want It All" was the same power struggle song, but with so much more pizazz, and a lot more talent... both Tisdale's and Grabeel's voices had matured greatly - the song was enjoyable.

"Now or Never" was a great opening song - it was a more umph filled opening song than the previous movies - one having started off with the sappy "Start of Something New," sung by Troy and Gabriela, and two having started off with the peppy "What Time Is It?" sung by the entire cast, with solos by Troy, Gabriela, Sharpay, and Ryan. "Now or Never" was an even better piece, sung by the basketball team, led of course by Troy (with a cheesy filler meant only to give Vanessa Hudgens face time). I think I enjoyed it more because of the feel of the song... being sports buff that likes to cheer on my team as they make a comeback.

There were a couple songs that really made the movie for me. "The Boys Are Back" is a song best experienced in the proper setting. The song is about Troy and Chad, being childhood friends, and talks about how they, as little kids, had returned over and over again to an old junk yard and played normal kid games. The dance is phenomenal, the song is sooo upbeat, and being a sucker for anything Chad and Troy, I loved it. It was adorable and awesome at the same time!

The real show stopper, though, was Troy's solo song. Throughout the movie, Efron proves over and over that his acting has improved - even more so than it did in Hairspray, and his voice is fantastic. On top of that, he's... well... HOT. haha. But what really stood out was the nature of the song - "Scream" is not only a great piece of music, but is so good, it could stand alone as a single... it's a well written song that could speak to so many people. Efron handles it great, the dance absolutely draws one in, and the scene itself is trippy and handled SO. WELL. ((It makes one anticipate the remake of FOOTLOOSE with Efron in the starring role!))

Now, don't get me wrong, it was definitely cheesy as all get out, but that's part of the magic of HSM. It's cheesy. The songs were the best they'd ever been, with outstanding vocal performances from the entire cast - including the ever amazing Corbin Bleu (of who I am a HUGE fan) and Monique Coleman... even Vanessa Hudgens wasn't that hard to listen to. There was also a bit of a deeper dilemma than in the other movies, what with them graduating and having to pick a college... (but, without fail, Troy's ability to miss baskets because he's upset made it into the movie) and there were a few surprises, including an extremely cute relationship that I didn't see coming, but couldn't be happier about!

I even cried. YES - I cried, and I'm not ashamed to say it. I didn't WANT to... I kept telling myself NOT to, but as soon as Chad left the stage after the show, and Troy and him essentially said goodbye to eachother in the gym... I cried like a big baby, because Troy and Chad's friendships was one of my favorite things in High School Musical... and I guess watching them say goodbye, it hit me that this was the last High School Musical movie - there won't be any more with the same group of kids. :(

The ending was really great - the ending that everyone EXPECTS from an HSM movie, complete with a curtain call at the end with the actors, which of course ALSO made me cry. The credits ran with a blooper reel, show pictures from all 3 movies, and were just soooo well done.

All in all, the movie was fantastic... and soooo worth your time, if you're a fan of the first movie. I encourage everyone to see it - because when it comes down to it... it was better than Saw V. :P

There were a couple previews that I was thrilled about, as well... movies that I WILL be seeing.

17 Again - Matthew Perry, Zac Efron. I think we all know why this was attached to the movie, lol, but it looks SO. GOOD. Mike O'Donnell's (Perry) life didn't turn out the way he planned - and after a mishap on a bridge, his wish of living it all over again comes true. Now 17 (Efron), O'Donnell gets to relive highschool - and gets an inside look at his kids' lives. I didn't do a very good job describing it, but it looks hilarious, and Efron looks sooooo good... hahaha. And who doesn't love Matthew Perry??? YAY CHANDLER!

And of course, there's BOLT - which I really want to see. It's coming out the same day as Twilight, so let's hope Bolt does better in the box office.

So... it was a good day. If you're on the fence about seeing it, go ahead and do it. It's certainly a GREAT movie. :)

So yeah, that's my review.

Say hi to your mother for me.

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Pre - HSM 3 vlog!

Didn't have time to edit, I'm literally about to run out the door as soon as I click "publish post." lol.

Like I said, get ya mind right, and I'll see you after the movie!!!

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Not with Donnie, no... BUT - with someone JUST as cute! Well, I should say... SOMEONES.

Most of you know that my first job when I moved out here from Texas was as a nanny for a family in my church... I worked for the family for almost 2 years now, and when you spend THAT MUCH time on a regular basis around a family, it's hard not to get attached... add to the fact that these were the cutest kids in the WORLD, I pretty much adopted the family as my second, and they adopted me. :)

Because of circumstances, I haven't seen the family in quite some time, so when Melissa called me today and asked me if I'd watch the kids for a couple hours, I was totally on board!!

I missed the kids like crazy, and they apparently missed me. I gave Melissa a hug at the door because, let's face it, I've got just as strong a relationship with her that I do the kids... but I didn't even get my keys out before Rachel and Reese started yelling "Nanny Lauren Nanny Lauren!!" It put a smile on my face!! And when Grammy dropped Kohen off, he took off across the lawn screaming my name as well!! It was awesome! But it was crazy disorienting to see how much they'd grown since I last saw them!

The most sobering thing was when Kohen ran outside to go swing. This is a kid who would BEG me to push him, and was now running out the back door yelling "Nanny Lauren, watch me swing myself!"

:( Talk about feeling useless!! haha! But Reese quickly fixed that when she asked me to carry her across the wood chips, and constantly asking me to hold her through out the night. ^__^

I got to make them dinner, which I haven't done in a while, and afterward we ran around outside for a bit, before cuddling up in the rocking chair and watching Cash Cab and How It's Made.

It was a great night, I would hardly even call it work. And then we did a quick "photo shoot" before I went home, which was great... totally got my face time with my kids!!! Reese totally loves the camera, and Kohen, OMGoodness that boy owns and melts my heart!!! He's my number one man!! haha! So, yeah, best face time I could have asked for! Wouldn't have traded this night for anything, EVEN the big D!

Don't get me wrong, I'm still looking forward to my Donnie face time, and I'm holding out for the works - hugs, pictures, maybe even a kiss! (Get at your girl, Donnie!) But I'm more than satisfied with my Culver face time! :)

Pictures are on the way, we took a ton and I'll def post a few here! Look forward to that!

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I LOVE when people send me stuff!

Someone sent me this link for this quiz, and I, of course, took it. The funny thing is... the answer doesn't completely suit me... especially when my answer to the second to last question was "enter quietly and keep to myself." Haha... BUT - here's my result:

Which New Kid On The Block Would Be Your Dream Date?

You should date Donnie. The only NKOTB that can match your wild side is Donnie. You are exciting and confident and love to keep the thrills coming! You know what you like and are not afraid to demand it�.and that makes your life unpredictable and totally awesome.

Find Your Character @

I feel like I should say - I LOVE LOVE LOVE when people send me stuff!!! Not that I've got a lot of readers, but if you link me to websites, quizzes, pics, songs, anything, I will post them here (if they are appropriate!) It's great to have something to do!!!

And, just to let you all know, I have a Max Payne review in the works, expect that by tomorrow at the latest. :)

Jokes are welcome too. Basically, anything you hear, see, watch, read, whatever that you want to share, send them to me, I'm more than happy to receive stuff!!! ((hugs))

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Finally - a Donnie Wahlberg movie I hate...




Donnie Wahlberg has finally let me down...okay, not really. I'm more let down by the fact that I finally HATE - not just dislike - a movie Donnie Wahlberg was in. I'm a big fan - as you can tell from my last blog, I'm a Wahlberg brothers fan... and as much as I love Mark, I love Donnie even more. I knew of him first, having been a closet New Kids on the Block fan, and just followed him. I've seen pretty much everything he's been in, from Ransom in 1996 to Saw V last Sunday. And, as bad as some of those movies were - wasn't a fan of Dead Silence (come on, I'm scared of puppets and clowns, both of which were in that movie, and the movie didn't frighten me at all) or Dreamcatcher, but enjoyed the movies cuz I laughed through a lot of it - I was always somewhat pleased with having seen them. And Donnie's acting ability is phenomenal, holy crap. I was drawn into the whole Saw franchise BY him - finally finding the time to watch Saw 2 simply becuase he was in it, and I owed it to my fandom to watch it... I was intrigued by the Saw movies after seeing 3 and 4 - they weren't scary, but I enjoyed them... and after Saw 2, I fell more in love with the franchise. Imagine my excitement to know that Donnie was credited in Saw V!! I don't think I need to describe to you how big a fan of Eric Matthews I am... that'll be handled later on.

I was really looking forward to this movie - Donnie Wahlberg aside, I had become a fan of Saw. I didn't think I ever would - the first movie was not a favorite of mine. It never really drew me in, because I didn't feel the plot was very strong... it was just an excuse for them to show some gore. My brother made me watch it... that was about 4 years ago. So when Saw 2 came out, I kind of blew it off. About when Saw 3 came out on DVD, I had since moved and made a few new friends, 2 of which were huge Saw fans. It was over Easter Break in about 2007 that we watched Saw 3. My first thought as the movie started was "Is that Donnie Wahlberg?" As the movie continued, I wasn't too impressed... the story line was confusing, because I hadn't seen 2, but the characters were rather solid... I really, REALLY liked Wahlberg's character. You have to have respect for a guy who will break his own foot, and then WALK on it. I even think I got into a "Eric isn't dead" debate with them. And what really got me, was when I went home, I couldn't sleep. I was THAT freaked out. That's intriguing... and the more I thought about it, the more I appreciated the movie... the more I liked it... so needless to say, when Saw 4 came out, I was in line with my friends at 10 o clock on October 27th of last year. I was even more intrigued... albeit upset about a few things... but after watching Saw 2 recently, I actually FELL IN LOVE with the Saw franchise... after watching two, being more aquainted with Eric Matthews, Amanda Young, John Cramer, Daniel Rigg, and Allison Kerry, I went back and watched 3 and 4, and gained a new appreciation for the movies, and caught things I never caught before.

I was SO excited for Saw V.

Then... I saw it. And I've never been so disappointed. I answered a discussion on a board about the movie... I feel it more appropriate to just quote what I said there, instead of writing it all out. If a few things are repeated that I already said, I apologize. Also, there are spoilers ALL UP IN THIS POST, so don't read it if you don't want the movie ruined for you.

"I was on the phone for an HOUR last night with my friend talking about how bad this movie was. It was just downright SAWFUL.


There was no twist, there was no suspense, I wasn't trying to figure out anything, and the ending was lame. The games were lame, too, and wth did they do to Strahm's character? He had SO much potential!!

Saw 1 did nothing for me. I was forced to watch it, and it was honestly the most pointless movie in the series. The story wasn't very complex, adn it was just a lot of gore.

Saw 2 was the best in the series - I didn't guess any of the twists, I was on the edge of my seat the whole time. It introduced a *few* new characters, namely Rigg and, my personal favorite, Eric Matthews. Eric was a BA, and my favorite character in the Saw series. Jigsaw's plan was soooo elaborate in 2, everything was so hard to guess... I loved every minute of it. EVERY MINUTE OF IT. It was hard to hate John, I found myself falling in love with Amanda's character, and rooting for (and falling in love) with Eric. I even CRIED in Saw 2. I found myself getting angry with Eric, wanting John to just give him his son... but at the end when the big reveal was made, I couldn't help but just admit that he had told us everything, and if we had just listened, we would have gotten our answers. Genius. I was in total awe of the sawesomeness of this movie. I felt anger and respect for John, felt sorry for/angry about Eric... sooo many connections were made with the characters... it was just a GREAT movie. I was a mild fan of the franchise before I saw this movie - but FELL IN LOVE WITH IT after seeing this one.

Saw 3 got me curious in the first few seconds... I saw it before Saw 2, and still managed to fall in love with Eric right off the bat... After seeing Saw 2, I watched Saw 3 again. Not as good as Saw 2, but the storyline continued steadily, and there were so many tiny nods that kept me guessing. I figured a few things out, but not Jeff's secret, and not a few other things. The traps were, dare I say, beautiful, in this one... the Angel, the Rack, the necklace... everything was so exquisite. And I still loved Amanda, John actually gained my respect, and I loved Eric EVEN. MORE. The character development was great, the story line was awesome... and the gore was bearable.

Saw 4 weakened a bit, but it was still awesome. I saw this, too, before Saw 2, and watched it also after seeing Saw 2. Because of the whacked out order in which I watched the films (1, 3, 4, 2, 3, 4, 1, 2, 5) I was able to catch a lot of little things I hadn't caught before, and that's one thing I REALLY liked about 2-4. They were seperate movies, but they all tied into eachother so well. A lot of times, with movies as complex as this, you get a nod in a previous movie, and it's forgotten int he second. This didn't happen over the course of these movies. Everything was done so well. Saw 4 was the only one that really ****** me off... It bothered me that, after 6 months of torture that he didn't deserve, Eric dies because Hoffman decided to put his life in the hands of Riggs. I didn't think that was fair... and I was really upset that Eric died. I thought, as I left the theater, that that was the biggest mistake of the Saw franchise... top that off with the death of Jeff, John, Amanda, and Riggs, you've got NO ONE, but Hoffman, left from the original franchise, and it's quite honestly going to be difficult to bring new things in. Hoffman was the other biggest mistake... but we'll get into this in a bit. That being taken into consideration, the movie was still good. The twist was fantastic, the story was still real thick, and I liked the new characters, namely Peter Strahm. I felt they could do a lot with his character. So, while tears were shed, and I got my first real glimpse of anger towards John, I liked the movie. The franchise was still going strong, and I was already speculating what they could do with Saw V... I pretty much guess that it would center around Strahm.

Saw 5... was so disappointing. Like I had guessed, they centered it around Strahm - driven crazy by the idea that Jigsaw had yet ANOTHER accomplice. He had brought this to light in Saw 3... his mistake was telling Hoffman that he suspected someone else. What I didn't guess was that they would focus the story on Hoffman like they did... that was a mistake in my mind. Another mistake was showing us John's girlfriend, receiving a box, looking inside, then not telling us what's in it. Great. Now we're probably getting Saw 6. The story for this movie was not only terrible, the plot uncomplex and boring, but it also tore apart everything the first 4 movies set up.

For starters, they made me lost respect for John. In 1-4, he was always a sort of upstanding serial killer, never really killing anyone, just trying to teach them to value their lives. One of my favorite Saw moments was in Saw 3, when he stares directly at Amanda and says "I despise murderers." We find out later that he WAS talking to her, referring tot he fact that her games were unwinable, that she was just killing to kill... and that she had left Eric Matthews for dead. It was chilling to see how Jigsaw reacted... how he gave Amanda chance after chance to change her. And Amanda went through SO MUCH to gain John's respect... there was a sort of pity to her character. Watching her die after everything she'd been through was upsetting... there was a lot of connection there. But in Saw 5, we learn how Hoffman got involved - and it went something like this:

Hoffman murdered his sister's killer in a jigsaw like trap... Jigsaw found out, put a gun to Hoffman's head, and threatened to pull the trigger. Apparently, that was his test. He then let Hoffman join him in everyone of his traps, from the barbed wire thing to the house to the Eric-on-Ice performance.

The idea in and of itself, I despised. I didn't like having Hoffman involved from Saw 1, especially since he was only brought into the picture in Saw 3.

But the thing that REALLY bothers me is that Hoffman was a murderer, that's how he started... and all Jigsaw did was give him a firm talking to. That blows his "I despise murderers" concept right out of the water.

Also - they destroyed Strahm's character. I'm glad his character ended up the way I did, because there was no other way they could have developed it after they destroyed it.

there were SO MANY plot holes... nothing got tied up, and it wasn't Saw-esque at all.

Hoffman's trap was a joke. It was an interesting idea, but I think the 5 in the room were merely there to fill time, and provide the gore that Saw was so famous for. The traps weren't as genius as they were before, which one could argue was because it was Hoffman in charge and not John, but still.

Plus, the idea that one person had to die in each stage... ridiculous. There's no rehabilitation in that... so Hoffman isn't playing by the rules... which would be fine if he had stuck to that pattern and broken the rules the entire time. But he didn't, they tried to make it like he was playing by the rules... which ****** me off to no end.

And finally, there was the Scrubs way of telling the story. Strahm tells Hoffman early in the movie that he thinks it's him... and then he goes off and follows an interesting trail, visiting all of Hoffman and Jigsaw's little trap areas... he would enter a room, and then we would get to see what happened, which is apparently what he was able to figure otu just by looking into the room. He would say a one liner to himself, and move to the next room, repeating the process. I call this the Scrubs way, because it reminded me of JD's dream sequences... he'll stare off into space, then say a one liner and move on. It just didn't work for the movie.

The whole movie was a waste of time. It wasn't what Saw had been at all... quite honestly, it was a joke. I half expected the whole movie to play out, then at the end, cut to Tobin Bell, Donnie Wahlberg, Costas Mandylor, and Scott Patterson, sitting around a table, at which point the following conversation takes place:

Costas: And that's how Saw 5 would have happened.
Scott: Wow...
Donnie: Glad I got out when I did!
Tobin: yeah... pretty much glad I died.

It was a JOKE. I've never been so disappointed...

There was so much more they could have done...

I think if htey had never introduced Hoffman, that woudl have been great... killing Eric was a mistake, they could have kept him alive and played with his character more because, let's face it, he was the BEST character in the franchise and had so much potential. Strahm could have been developed better, not turned into an obsessed wimp like he was. Even keeping Riggs alive would have been great... and I would have even been happy if Hoffman's character was developed a little better... but none of that happened.

The movie could have gone in so many directions that would have rocked, but it didn't... it sucked. So - while I was excited for Saw 5, I must say, after watching it... Saw is done. That movie was, as I said before... Sawful."

"Seriously, though... Eric's character - at least to me - had SO MANY dimensions... and he was pretty bad ******.

I felt killing him in four was not only unfair, but a waste of a great character. More so than any of the other cops, even Hoffman, they could have played with Matthews, taken him down so many roads, instead of so cruelly smashing his head Final Destination 3 style.

And I would have liked to see a little more development out of Amanda, as well...

I personally never came around to Hoffman. I wasn't a big fan, and I'm still not.

Too many things upset me in this movie, not enough of the Saw I was used to... and I think the story line just fell limp.

Not to mention, I don't know how they're going to justify doing a 6th movie when Strahm is dead, and Hoffman's plan was to frame him. They can't continue with the Jigsaw murders for a number of reasons...

1. Hoffman needs someone to let him out of the case... which means they're going to find it, along with Strahm's blood. They'll know he's dead, and he's been framed as Jigsaw's last accomplice... so if the murders continue, then there goes Hoffman's big plan.

2. Hoffman doesn't intend to be let out of the box, just dies there, and there's no one to carry on the torch.

3. Hoffman is in cahoots with Jigsaw's girlfriend, she let's him out of the box, and no one ever finds the warehouse. They continue the murders, but no one ever catches the illusive Peter Strahm... I don't know about you, but I'm not looking forward to a movie where they chase a man we know is already dead.

And the idea of involving the gf? Yeah, don't like that. Why doesn't Jigsaw just pass the torch to ME next?

The other thing that bothered me was that there is apparently NO forensics team in the Saw movies.

They found a cup of coffee on the desk - a cup of coffee that was supposedly Strahm's, but that we saw Hoffman take a drink out of earlier in the film. Wouldn't procedure mean for them to take all the evidence (the cup, the phone, etc.) and do proper tests on it? wouldn't they then find Hoffman's saliva on the coffee cup, thus blowing his whole plan to smithereens?

And there were far too many inconsistencies.

I don't agree that this is the same Saw we're used to. I agree they get a bit of lee way cuz they're new writers, but not THAT much... and I don't think it would have gone stale had we kept some of the original characters... they all had a lot of potential and were developed so well...

But even if they had treated Strahm a little better, I would have enjoyed it more."

So there you go... those are my feelings on Saw V.

I also wasn't too happy about the fact that, the only scene Wahlberg was in was a flashback of him dying. Yeah, let's play THAT over and over again. Band of Brothers (I always found it interesting that his character's name was Lipton in both BoB and Dead Silence), Annapolis, The Sixth Sense, Boomtown, and of course my personal favorite, Purgatory... among all others. But this will be one movie that has a glimpse of the actor that I will NEVER watch again... unless my friends and I get together and make fun of the movie... haha.

The good news is... Max Payne will be better than this, no matter how bad it is.


You're Not Sorry
Taylor Swift

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Can Mark Wahlberg Act?? Here's my answer, - to you and everyone else.

So, I'd be willing to bet most of you know who actor Mark Wahlberg is. The guy's been acting since 1993, and even before that he was known in the group Marky Mark and the Funky Bunch (thanks to brother Donnie) and was a very successful Calvin Klien model... but if you don't know who he is, I would advise you NOT to google him. Despite Mark's acting talent, good looks, and musical saavy, he's been under a rather strange barrage of attacks as of late.

As a movie buff AND aspiring actress, I feel that I should say something positive about Mr. Wahlberg, if not just because it might be nice for him to have something supportive out there if he ever, God forbid, wants to google himself.

I feel I should say that I am a fan. He's fun to look at, he's enjoyable to watch, and I genuinely just like the guy. Couldn't tell you why. He's just one of those people I'm drawn to. Suffice to say, I've seen just about every one of his movies.... and it's kind of hard to think that everyone out there hasn't seen at least one - and it's real hard to think that anyone hasn't seen at least one that they like, if not love. But I'm sure a lot of you are in the same boat - admit it. Even if you don't care for his music or acting or anything, you can't help but like the guy. There's not a lot to hate him for.

However, that isn't enough to keep him safe from the savage writings of magazine articles, movie critics, and online bloggers who really have nothing better to do but tear down someone that probably won't even read what they wrote. ((In their defense, it's not much better to be an online blogger with nothing better to do but encourage someone that probably won't even read what they wrote :P)) Because everyone is a critic... so I'm going to be a positive one.

It was hard to say anything about Marky Mark when he started the ball rolling, gaining momentum in Boogie Nights and only getting more popular till his nomination for his role in The Departed. There wasn't a lot of negative media... but then Mark did a little movie called The Happening, and in all fairness - if you look at the movie as a horror flick, I'll agree with everyone, it was downright terrible. I read a number of articles, and one really got me in the mindset of writing this blog... here's a snippet of what I read.

"Then came ... The Happening. It's as if M. Night Shyamalan came to Wahlberg in the dead of night, ninja-style, and clipped his wings. If you haven't seen this movie -- this terrible, awful, lazy movie -- you must witness it for the sheer badness that is Mark Wahlberg's performance. It isn't all bad (Wahlberg nails a scene between him and a plant). But man, trust me when I say it's a car wreck."

The movie itself focuses on a group of people that are trying to survive as a deadly nerve agent is causing people to just up and kill themselves... as an M. Night Shyamalan piece, it wasn't the best it could be... I think we can all agree that his movies have been going downhill since The Village. The twist in this movie was revealed the earliest it's ever been in a movie, with more than half the movie still needing to play out, and ending was pretty guessable by the first scene of the movie. However, it was hard not to enjoy the film, if one stopped taking it seriously by the time Wahlberg's character was introduced. Like I said, as a horror flick, it was downright terrible - but it wasn't a bad movie. In fact, it's one of my favorite movies of all time, second only to Tarantula. It was done very well, and dangit, it was FUNNY. I saw it 2 or 3 times in the theater, and have watched it a few times since it's release to DVD. It's a movie I would consider well worth the money I've spent on it - which is more than I can say for Saw 5. (Another blog for another time)

The cheesy-ness of the movie, however, should NOT have had a negative effect on Wahlberg's acting abilities. Wahlberg's acting, among other things, truly made the movie for me.

I'll agree, it was a bit hard to get used to (his first line "I don't know if you guys have read this article in the New York Times about Honeybees disappearing..." was delivered in what I can only describe as a wannabe valley girl accent) and it was downright uncomfortable to watch. I'll admit, I questioned his acting ability at first as well. But - by the time he and Leguizamo had their discussion about Elliot's relationship, I was able to really get into his character... and anyone who wasn't able to, I emplore you to watch the movie again... but this time, don't think of it as Mark Wahlberg in the Happening... think of it as Elliot Moore in the Happening. Because that's what it was - I was too busy thinking of him as Mark Wahlberg, thinking of roles like Shooter, The Departed, 4 Brothers, stuff like that. In my mind, Mark Wahlberg was a bad ass, and he should always play one. But that's not Elliot's character.

Elliot Moore is the exact opposite of the vision I had for Mark Wahlberg. Elliot is a high school science teacher, and he loves his job. He has a wife, and is settled into his life. Instead of the leather jacket that I'm used to seeing, he wears button up shirts, sweater vests... Elliot Moore is not a bad ass. Elliot Moore is a geek - and I love him.

I applaud Wahlberg for his work in this movie - and can't undserstand why so many people don't give him the recognition he deserves. He was out of his element, and he did a great job. I strongly emplore all of you to watch it again, with that in mind. If you still don't like his performance, then, I'll accept that.

Then came previews for Max Payne... I was SO excited... couldn't wait... and in anticipation for this movie, the negativity from The Happening wore down, and then SNL made me VERY happy...

Andy Samberg did a skit called "Mark Wahlberg talks to Animals." I found it hilarious... quite possibly the funniest skit on SNL in a loooong time. He talked to a number of animals, and ended just about every one of the conversations with "Say hello to your mother for me." Hilarious.

And, as is the norm, Mark reacted. He seemed angry... upset about the spoof, and for whatever reason, people jumped on him for it. But COME ON people, the MAN IS AN ACTOR, and he has a history of being a bad ass. He grew up in Boston and did a stint in JAIL for crying out loud, and gained a lot of momentum in a rap group... so to react as a bostonian would is smart... and I found his reaction hilarious.... and didn't take it seriously at all. His later interviews about Max Payne on various networks, including one that had the phrase "I am Max Payne, say hi to your mother for me," and a great act on Jimmy Kimmel, where he said he was going to punch Samberg in his big beautiful nose only helped strengthen the "he's not serious" mentality I had. Put that together with his appearance on a following Saturday Night Live where he threatened to punch Lorn Michaels in the nose if he didn't tell him where Samberg was, and later had a talk with Samberg, should have proven to everyone that it was, finally just a stunt. But still, people continued to talk about how self centered he was, etc. etc.

"I'm guessing some very smart friends or publicist or agent told Mr. Wahlberg he needs to show the world he could get over himself because he didn't have the best of press weeks leading up to last Saturday. And oh yeah ... he had a movie coming out. With all that said, for the most part, the mission was accomplished. Mark did the self-deprecating thing in a pretty funny SNL skit with Samberg, and all was quiet in the jungle. Sincere kudos to him. It's been hypothesized that the whole Wahlberg-Samberg thing smacks of Lawler-Kaufman. If that's the case, Wahlberg is a much better (and smarter) actor than people give him credit for. My guess is his initial negative reaction was legit. The back channels then worked their magic and he used his Kimmel appearance to set up the SNL cameo"

For everyone who must know, Wahlberg's reaction was such:

"'Saturday Night Live' hasn't been funny for a long time. They've asked me to do the show a ton of times. I used to watch it when Eddie Murphy was there and Joe Piscopo and Bill Murray. I don't even know who's on the show now."

Does that seem like an overly angry person?? And how many people would disagree with that comment? Saturday Night Live HASN'T been funny in a long time... I just recently started rewatching because Michael Phelps was hosting the premiere, and a few digital shorts made me smile. But seriously?? Let's all freak out about the comment, especially when it's followed up by 2 or more interviews that show he wasn't being cruel.

The article that broke the first story of him being a jerk even posted their OWN update, saying that maybe he does have a sense of humour due to his appearance on SNL, but they didn't change anything in their initial article. Thanks for spreading the joy.

And now he's under fire for Max Payne, apparently the movie is terrible and that's his fault. First off, people, we need to learn that if the movie is bad to begin with, it's not the actors' faults... bad writing can't be improved on by great delivery.

I can't say whether or not Max Payne is good... I have yet to see it... but I'm also hesitant to see NOT see the movie, seeing as the first and most prevalent criticism on the web right now is "Can Mark Wahlberg act?" And my answer to that will ALWAYS be the same.

So - to everyone that wants to jump on the guy for being a bad actor, I beg you to give him another chance... if you don't care for the characters or roles he chooses to play, that's fine... but cut him some slack.

So... can Mark Wahlberg act?? My answer is yes - come on, even if he was terrible in The Happening (which he wasn't) and if his performance in Max Payne is less than ideal - with movies like Shooter, The Departed, The Italian Job (and a sequel in the works w00t!), The Perfect Storm, 4 Brothers, Invincible, We Own The Night, Three Kings, etc. etc. etc., there's no doubt that the man can act. And seriously? Who doesn't love Entourage?

If he couldn't, we would have gotten on his case sooner.

Links of reference:

Can Mark Wahlberg Act?

Why Can't Mark Wahlberg Take a Joke?

Because the Night
Perfect Day

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Once upon a time, a girl changed the world...

I just got back from the Revolve Tour last night, and I've been thinking of a few things that were mentioned. One thing in particular got me thinking, and I usually keep these thoughts to myself, because I don't know how to get them across... it's frustrating to have people not understand, and ten times MORE frustrating to know that the reason they don't understand is because you're not making them understand. But this has been bothering me, and I feel that maybe, if I write it out, it may make more sense. So - if this whole thing sounds retarded, bear with me.

Yesterday, Natalie Grant came out and told an arena full of girls that one girl could change the world. That every little thing that we do will have an impact on the world. Now, I love Natalie Grant... she's one of my biggest role models. She's an amazing vocalist, is a better Christian witness than I could ever dream of being in my lifetime, and she's a real person. I usually hang on every word she says.

But yesterday, I had to disagree... and it made me mad.

I mean, who am I to disagree with someone like Natalie Grant??? She obviously knows what she's talking about... she's succeeded every where I've failed, and even where I've succeeded, she's succeeded better. So if she says something, why shouldn't I just accept it as true?

She pointed out how some of the girls in the building were probably saying that they couldn't change the world, that God couldn't use them, and honestly, that was me.

I've been dealing with some crap in my life that I'm still not comfortable with saying out loud, and I'm pretty much the worst christian witness I've ever met. How... no, WHY would God want to use me? Why would he use me when he could use someone far more capable???

And what can I do to change the world??? I mean, really? I've tried... but when have I ever left a deep impression on anyone's life?

I've been thinking about this all day... I wasn't able to sleep last night, and I couldn't get it off my mind this morning...

It's not so much the fact that I don't believe a small thing could have a big effect... hell, I subscribe to the Butterfly Effect. It was more, why would God want to use me and how could he?

I've had some time to think about it, and I've decided, Natalie was right. I mean, He's GOD. If he wants to use me, he'll find a way. I don't know how... but he does, and I figure it's just time to stop trying to figure everything out. I live a faith based existance, don't I?

"Therefore, since we have been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ. Through him we have also obtained access by faith into this grace in which we stand, and we rejoice in hope of the glory of God."

It's funny how peaceful you feel when you finally just give it up, and say that He will find a way. Give way to faith.

So... I'm going to try to let go... instead of asking how, I'll ask now.

Lord, please... I don't know how you're going to do it, but use me to spread your truth. Help me to live out your life... take this crumpled, broken life, fix it, and make it matter.

I know I'm not worth much, but you can change that. Make me matter, and help me change the world, so that I may rejoice in Your glory.

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A Few Things Occured to Me...

I was thinking... a lot of times, when I think, nothing really interesting comes of it. But, earlier, I had a bit of a thought stream that interested me. So, I'm going to try and just lay it out for you... as unedited as possible.

There are certain things that I could do non stop.

I could stare at the clouds all day without getting bored.

I could watch the rain hit my window for hours.

I could lie in the grass and stare at the stars until the sun came up.

I could stare at the moon and the pictures it paints on any clouds that come near it.

Because I've suddenly become very aware of the everyday gorgeous miracles in this beautiful, broken world.

I have yet to keep from smiling when a baby smiles at me.

I will always laugh when hearing a baby's laughter.

I feel it extremely important to teach children of these subtle, every day joys.

Because the small things can change the world.

I will remain terrified of tornadoes and hurricanes - the things we take for granted like wind and water are sometimes the most terrifying forces on earth.

I understand now that there are more important things in the world than winning.

Than being popular.

Than having everyone like you.

I understand that what I say may have a bigger impact than I think.

I also understand it may have no impact at all.

I don't have to save the world - it's not my job, and I can't do it.

I will always commit myself 100% to the things that I love

Commitment is an aspect of pride.

Pride, if not abused, is a beautiful thing.

Pride may sometimes come from losing.

The most important thing is that you love and commit yourself... to everything important.

I will never see the moon the same way again...

or the earth, for that matter.

I'm not sure why, but everything just seems more... fragile. Everything seems more... real.

This blog was inspired by:

"Wonderful Life"
Natalie Grant

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