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While I get that Chronicle was good, I still had a few problems with the tropes it DID indulge in.

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The Unstoppable Gravy Express said on January 9th, 2013 at 10:34 am

1) Emily Blunt = awesome

2) In my 2012 movie world there’s Moonrise Kingdom, then everything else. Though I did really enjoy Looper, Chronicle, and The Cabin in the Woods. And there’s some movies I still need to catch up on.

3) Fringe’s “glimpse of evil future” episode last season was so awesome, that I’ve been feeling let down by the final season. It feels dull and listless and the ambered videos are like warmed-over LOST. Are perhaps limited resouces/budget to blame? But that wouldn’t excuse characters constantly restating the obvious i.e. “remember, Peter, we’re here to find the next piece of the plan to defeat the Observers”. Plus trying to figure out Walter’s history now that it’s been double-un-retconned. Maybe explain THAT more instead.

4) I hope Part 2 includes board games!

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Was pleased to see that there are people out there who enjoy Happy Endings, since it’s a show that is admittedly kind of grating to irregular viewers but continues to be one of my favourite sitcoms.

As Gravy Express said: Cabin in the Woods. One of the most enjoyable films of 2012 for me, though certainly nowhere as good as Looper.

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smwilliams said on January 9th, 2013 at 11:43 am

I’ll comment on the things I’ve seen (haven’t played any of the games)…

Looper – Excellent film that handles time travel in a more adult fashion than most (huge, world-changing inventions are usually used for profit first) and uses the sci-fi elements to tell a story about being young and growing old. Honestly, my favorite part of the movie is that diner scene where Old Joe is telling Young Joe about his Chinese wife and looks so disgusted with his younger self’s dismissive attitude. A true “You don’t know jack, junior” moment if there ever was one.

The Five Year Engagement – A “good” romantic comedy which is harder to make than most people think. Manages to deftly balance the edge between hokey and REAL, YO. I’d like to echo your comment about real life and relationships, mainly that sometimes two people who love each other don’t end up together because of all the other stuff.

Archer – Watch it! I talk this show up to anybody I meet and get half-hearted groans when I tell them it’s animated. Gag-per-minute ratio is high, but the inside-slash-repeated jokes are what really gets me. A spiritual successor to Arrested Development.

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Mitchell Hundred said on January 9th, 2013 at 11:57 am

My list of 2012 movies would probably include Anna Karenina somewhere. It has some really excellent preformances, not to mention a fascinating concept for its set which puts the story in an engaging frame. I mention this because no-one else seems to be talking about it.

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Uhm, I hate to correct you like this, but the best stealth game is the original MGS for PS1

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Purists who whine about how it is not exactly like the original need to be hit with a baseball bat.

Is it okay if I whine about the economy/base-building aspect of the game being not as deep as it could have been, and being more limited in your strategic thinking than you ought to have been?

That’s my only substantive critique of X-Com. Well, okay. We absolutely should have gone to Mars and I don’t understand why that didn’t happen. But that’s a nitpick. X-Com is an amazing, but the economy side of it wasn’t as robust as it could/should have been. I’m not asking to have to account for every ammo magazine (although I certainly wouldn’t have minded doing that) but it could be deeper.

And the way it generates UFO events was… well, it was frustrating at times. You had to wait for things to get WORSE in a country before you could make things BETTER. In the original you could take proactive steps.

This is not to be read as an indictment of the game which is fucking amazing and a glorious rebirth of the franchise.

Fringe. Still epic in its last season as it barrels home to the close we’re all waiting for.

Says you. The finale I’m waiting for involves the alternate universe, which we’re apparently all meant to regard as a dead letter despite them spending half the fucking series making us care about the place.

Season 5 of Fringe of crap (so far; maybe the last couple episodes will change my mind) and I’m prepared to justify and back up that opinion.

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mygif

I really, really liked Looper, but it left a funny taste in my mouth. I don’t know, did anyone else get the feeling that the way the movie was advertised, a futuristic action chase movie with the main character chasing himself as the clever twist, was completely different from the way the story is structured and themed?

Don’t get me wrong it was still very good, I just thought I would get something in the vein of “The Fugitive” instead of “Unforgiven” in the way it deconstructs genre tropes in a serious manner. I almost wish I got to see that adrenaline fueled, catch me if you can Looper instead. I don’t know, was I the only one who felt this way?

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Dishonored was surprisingly excellent. Each of it’s components, taken individually, are adequate and workmanlike. Put together, the game is basically “Nightcrawler versus the Steampunks”, and it’s awesome.

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vince92079 said on January 9th, 2013 at 1:51 pm

Picked up most of those games on the steam sale over xmas.

I’d also put Crusader Kings 2 on that list.

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OBJECTION!

Key and Peele is wonderful, but you can’t be hands-down the funniest show of the year when you debut the same year as Gravity Falls.

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I’ll have to echo the above about Gravity Falls. It’s been the year’s most unexpected pleasure.

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Tenken347 said on January 9th, 2013 at 3:34 pm

I loved Looper, which I regard as the best sci-fi film since Blade Runner, but JCHandsom is absolutely right about the advertising being a bait and switch. For starters, every trailer was cut to make it look like Bruce Willis was the protagonist.

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SilverHammerMan said on January 9th, 2013 at 4:09 pm

Things you liked? I don’t pay you to write about things you like, Parker! Now get out there and bring me complaints! And pictures of Spider-Man!

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SilverHammerMan said on January 9th, 2013 at 4:10 pm

I`ll have to check out some of the shows you recommended though, I haven`t seen most of them.

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So what did you actually like about “Safety Not Guaranteed”? I couldn’t find myself caring about any of the characters, the sub-plots felt tacked on to pad the running time, and the pacing seemed glacial.

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SightlyBodKing,

Happy Endings is my favorite TV comedy by far right now. I was a fan of Casey Wilson going in and quickly got to love Adam Pally, but now the whole cast is about at that level.

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I don’t often disagree with your taste in pop-culture, but I absolutely hated The Adjustment Bureau. One of my least favourite movies of 2011.

But I definitely like your pick of The Five-Year Engagement. Not a movie that would traditionally come up in this kind of “best-of” thing, but I really enjoyed it.

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william kendall said on January 10th, 2013 at 7:56 am

One can never have too much of Emily Blunt.

As to Archer, it’s far and beyond hilarious. You wouldn’t want to know people like this in real life- backstabbing, screaming, volatile nutcases- but the writing, pacing, and situations in that toon are just priceless.

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The Unstoppable Gravy Express said on January 10th, 2013 at 8:45 am

For starters, every trailer was cut to make it look like Bruce Willis was the protagonist.

I don’t think that’s unfair really, because you don’t want the trailer to take you too far into the movie, and in the early stages of the movie, Bruce Willis IS the protagonist (or at least seems to be).

I liked how the story made you switch allegiances like that… “Man, Joseph is an evil asshole, Bruce will set him straight and save the day! Go Bruce! Oh wait, Bruce is murdering innocent children, holy fuck! Go Joseph!”

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The Unstoppable Gravy Express said on January 10th, 2013 at 9:44 am

….aaaand Looper gets no Oscar love at all. Moonrise Kingdom almost utterly ignored, boo.

More to say in MGK’s Oscar post (please do an Oscar post!)

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mygif

I still want to read MGK vs. Bullshit Superhero Tropes. I think we all want to.

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Mark of the Ninja really is pretty spectacular. I bought it during the Thanksgiving sale I think and am still slowly working through the New Game+ mode. Path of Nightmares forever.

X-Com is in fact quite good but man that was one of the most ungodly annoying tutorial sequences ever. It was incredibly long, people kept calling me ‘Commander’ and then ordering me to do something, you’d click one menu on the highlighted pre-selected choice and then need to listen to another full minute of exposition. Once they actually let me run things I started having a good time–also what that other guy said about not being able to take proactive steps to reduce terror, even like, buying a propaganda campaign or something.

I have Gods and Kings but I haven’t played much with it. I honestly liked the slightly reduced complexity of V because I am not a deep strategy player really, I don’t want to need a spreadsheet while I run my empire.

The Adjustment Bureau just struck me as ‘white guys deserve agency if they want it really badly, everybody else fall into line’

Fringe irritated me so much with its Peter is Special Look at How Special Peter Is stuff that I just lost interest in it in the second season. Seriously, he never came off to me as anything but smug and Liv was constantly denied agency to puff him up.

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re:SilverHammerMan

“Things you liked? I don’t pay you to write about things you like, Parker! Now get out there and bring me complaints! And pictures of Spider-Man!”

Best comment of 2012!

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Bunheads. Bunheads yes. I can’t believe how much I am basically totally in love with Stacey Oristano. And Sutton Foster ain’t no slouch, sass-wise.

I don’t know how I’m going to break it to my wife and newborn kid.

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DensityDuck said on January 11th, 2013 at 2:51 am

Looper’s problem is that it wanted to have its cake and eat it, too. It wanted to be all “time travel paradoxes, whatever man, Bruce Willis is to MANLY to deal with that shit” but then the end of the movie is entirely dependent on…time travel paradoxes.

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mygif

God, now I’m trying to remember Jeff Daniel’s one-liner in Looper but I can’t.

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God, now I’m trying to remember Jeff Daniel’s one-liner in Looper but I can’t.

“I’m from the future. Go to China.

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I too preferred the trailer version of looper to Psychic Farm Shennannigans

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X-Com: Purists who whine about how it is not exactly like the original need to be hit with a baseball bat.

What about purists that point out it’s just a dumbed down version of the original with no actual improvements other than graphics?

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Entity447B said on January 15th, 2013 at 4:02 am

What about purists that point out it’s just a dumbed down version of the original with no actual improvements other than graphics?

And the interface. XCOM (the new one) has a glitchy, slightly wonky interface. It’s still better than the interface of the original.

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