The Salvation

Rated: R | Running Time: 92 Minutes
On Blu-Ray and DVD August 4th

Ahh, an homage to the classic western and revenge movie genres, which generally means there aren’t many surprises, and yet I found myself not multi-tasking while watching “The Salvation.” How did that happen? Well, I’m not really sure, especially since, at the beginning of the film, I was worried that somehow I missed in the press release that the movie was going to be in Danish with English subtitles because our lead character, Jon (Mads Mikkelsen), is greeting his wife and child at the train station, speaking in foreign tongue, and the subtitles started rolling. Luckily she and the boy get murdered by the bad guys, everyone is back to speaking English in the wild west, and the movie could get to the good stuff like sweeping, gorgeous landscape shots, townsfolk scared of the brutal thugs, and Jon doing what he does best, kill the bad people.

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Maybe My Dad Hid the Puzzle Piece

Do you attribute unexplained, Earthly experiences to dead people?

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A little while ago a friend of mine’s mother passed away, and much like many things in the lives of people we know these days, I found out about it on Facebook. I felt for him as you could feel his grief in his postings, but you could also see the love around him to help him through.

His grief reminded me a little of when my mom passed away back in 2008 and the love of the people around me who helped me through, especially my then girlfriend and now wife, but as this passing occurred near June 6th, what would be my father’s birthday were he still alive, I had also been thinking of my dad a lot. With those thoughts floating around my head, an incident happened that really solidified my dad continuing to influence things around me, maybe even from beyond the grave. Continue reading Maybe My Dad Hid the Puzzle Piece

Where Was Your Flag on the 4th of July?

Where was your flag on the 4th of July?

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I’m not a bad American. I love this country. I’m just a bad rememberer. The thing is that on the 4th of July the reminders were everywhere so how I forget remains a mystery. One of my friends posted on Facebook how she went for a five mile run and was sad because there were so few flags being flown, other people were sharing pictures of flags, taking pictures of flags, changing their profile pictures to flags, and the night before my wife said, “You didn’t put out the flag.” I replied, “That’s because it’s not the 4th of July, yet. I’ll put it out tomorrow.” I said this with all of the conviction in the world, confident in my ability to remember the next day to fly our flag.

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The Challenge of the Dust Collector

I suppose I got it from my father. I’m not talking about my wonderful good looks, nor my nose, but my love of knick-knacks. You know knick-knacks? If you type “knick-knack” into Google you get: “a small worthless object, especially a household ornament,” with wonderful synonyms like: “trinket, novelty, gewgaw, bibelot, ornament, trifle, bauble, gimcrack, curio, tchotchke, memento, souvenir, kickshaw.” My wife simply calls them dust collectors, so I guess, I’m a dust collector, although looking at the synonyms I’m thinking of shifting to calling them bibelot if only because then it sounds fancy.

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Late Phases: Night of the Lone Wolf


MPAA Rated – Not Rated
It’s 1:36 Long
A Review by:
Andy Labis

The more I think about it, the more perfect “Late Phases: Night of the Lone Wolf” was, especially in the realm of the old-school, and I mean this with all due respect, cheesy, werewolf movie. First there is the title, or at least the “Night of the Lone Wolf” part. Sure there’s the solo werewolf at the start, but by the end there are multiple wolves. Maybe I’m misunderstanding the title and our hero is the lone wolf, but I just couldn’t get past the fact that our main werewolf all of a sudden decided to go on a biting spree and instantly we have a pack of werewolves.

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Believe Me

MPAA Rated – PG-13
It’s 1:33 Long
A Review by:
Andy Labis

I know. I read the press release for “Believe Me.” And yes, I know the synopsis mentioned a group of college kids who figured out a great way to make a quick buck, namely by scamming Christians to donating money to their phony-baloney charity, and then said kids would realize the true meaning of being good people. And finally, I know that’s what the movie ends up being about, but I so wanted it to flip directions and be a full parody of Christian fundraising. Instead, yes, our foursome realized the error of their ways and became good people again, until, “I, um.”

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A New Watch Every Few Years?

It’s almost here. It’s almost time. The world, and our lives, is about to change. Why? Because the Apple Watch is almost on sale. Fine, there hasn’t been an official launch date, there is finally an official Apple “Special Event” titled “Spring Forward” that will most likely showcase the watch, and other than some articles about possible pricing, some sightings of it out in the wild, and the general rumors that seem to come around any Apple release, we still don’t know anything official about it except, that, in the world of watches, unlike the watch that you might receive as a graduation gift, an anniversary gift, a birthday, you know, the watch you will cherish for the rest of your life, the Apple Watch will actually have a shelf life. Watches in the past were mechanical, or even if digital maybe you would just need to change a battery, and there are people who still have a wind-up watch handed down for generations. The Apple Watch, on the other hand, is technology, and like all technology has a shelf life.

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He Couldn’t Ring Dem Bells

I found myself in a bell tower. I won’t go into when I found myself in a bell tower because then the story would probably be worse, but there I was. I was led to the door to the bell tower, but we thought the door was locked. The 15-year old in this 47-year old body really wanted to go into the bell tower, but alas, it appeared a little lock was there between normal-ness and adventure. Oh well. Then an opportunity came for me to be by that door again, and low and behold the lock wasn’t really locked, I opened the door and found myself, alone, climbing the stairs. But I was torn. In my head I knew I shouldn’t really be there, the initial stairs were kind of rickety, but I continued to climb. I made it to the first level, looked up the next set of stairs, and somehow continued going up.

Then thoughts entered my head.

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MPAA Rated – Not rated.
It’s 1:19 Long
A Review by:
Andy Labis

Movie Stats & Links
Starring: Maiara Walsh, Danny Trejo, Tony Todd, Austin Abke, Bryan Bockbrader, Adam Guthrie
MPAA Rated: Not Rated.
Released By: Dark Sky Films
Release Date: February 24, 2015
Kiddie Movie: Send them to bed. Lots of blod!
Date Movie: If she likes blood-splattering thrillers.
Gratuitous Sex: There is an attempted rape in the van, though it doesn’t turn out too well for the dude.
Gratuitous Violence: Headshots, shotgun blasts, machetes, and a handy little cutting saw help with the blood splatter.
Action: Not really much action.
Laughs: Some chuckles.
Memorable Scene: Emma kicking the crap out of Shane.
Memorable Quote: “What kind of amateur bullshit is this?”
Directed By: Bryan Bockbrader
Extras on the Blu-Ray: The bloopers were decent enough, and I actually liked seeing the alternate endings.

The press release said: “three thugs viciously kidnap a drug cartel boss’ only daughter from her home in broad daylight.” With that I was a little confused at the opening scene of VANish as a dude and his lover were being abducted at night, in the California hills. Now let’s cut to the next scene of two dudes in a van, talking calmly amongst each other as dudes will talk, and I’m wondering where is the third dude? Is this the van? And what happened to those people in the first scene?

Little did I know the importance of the first abduction to the plot of the movie, to be explained during a later scene, and now I was being fully introduced to possibly the dumbest trio of kidnappers that there have ever been in a movie. That’s okay, though, because the trio of dopes really made VANish an entertaining film in the realm of blood-splattering thrillers.

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Out in Less Than One Day

As a Catholic and a Polish dude I was preparing for Lent. Paczki were ordered, and I began pondering the Lenten season. For years we are always told we should give something up until Easter, although the rules were always a little shady as sometimes we were told we were able to have on Sundays what we gave up, other times there was the spirit of “fasting” for the entire season. One year I did great, giving up adding sweetener, both artificial and natural, into things, specifically my iced tea and coffee. Somehow I made it through the season although I did pick up the diet soda after Easter. This season, though, I had a plan. I was going to add some things which I know kind of goes against the theory of Lent, but I felt trying to consistently do my yoga, meditation, and exercising for the season would make me a better person, but on the giving up something I went back to the old standard, giving up soda.

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