April 3 2017

Get Out!


So, this movie “Get Out” is receiving all sorts of critical acclaim in addition to doing about $150 million (to date) domestically on a $4.6 million budget.   That’s crazy right?  No, it’s not, and I’ll tell you why.

I could honestly spend the whole day writing about all the problems I have with Hollywood from racism to the feminization (yup, made that word up) of men, but I’m going to stay on topic here. The theme of this post is ‘CREATIVITY’.

I’ve been talking to a friend of mine for years about how deep the void of creativity in Hollywood has gotten since we hit the year 2000.  I can’t recall when it started exactly, but somewhere in the early 2000’s studios started being so scared to green light films based on original screenplays, that we started getting hit with all of these books and television shows turned movies.

Next thing you know the superhero movies took over and then the reboots.  Excuse me, crappy ass reboots. If you think I’m exaggerating there’s actually a “Chips” movie in theaters right now.  Did I see it?  No. How much would I bet that its horrible? My life.  Why so confident?  I understand Hollywood.

Hollywood Land

The decision makers in studios are lazy, uninspired and greedy.  They don’t give a damn about product anymore.  They just want your money. So, if they can find a way to re-package something from your childhood or a book you loved reading, they will not hesitate to call the merchandising companies and set-up orders before the script is even penned.  Let’s go back to my buddy now.

I told him about a year ago that sooner or later people are going to get sick of super hero movies, reboots and television re-hashes and then Hollywood will be forced to change their ways.  He laughed and told me that will never happen.  Do I think that time is now? No.  Is there a window of opportunity? Yes.

Unfortunately it will only take the next piece of crap Transformers movie or something like it to do $400 million and studio execs will forget that Jordan Peele has become the first African-American writer-director to earn $100-million on their debut film.  Or that it earned an almost perfect score on Rotten tomatoes.  I hope I’m wrong, because there is a lot of potential out there and it’s being purposefully overlooked.

There are a large number of screenwriters and novelist out there with great, compelling stories to tell, but with the way things are run most of them either give up before the world gets a chance to see their words beautifully transferred on-screen or worse, they get dumped in a bottomless pit of wasted talent.

So, I say “GET OUT” to the lazy, money hungry studio execs who keep pushing this garbage and I hope we get at least a good decade of classic movies again before I kick the bucket.  To you writers out there reading this; KEEP UP THE GOOD WORK.

Trust me, there’s still hope.

March 26 2017

Is It Time To ‘Close Your Account’ With Someone?


If you are reading this there are likely two reasons why:

  1. You like to read and analyze opinions and the title seemed interesting.
  2. You are trying to determine if you should end a relationship.

Let me be clear, this is not just about ‘romantic’ relationships which seems to be the default reaction whenever we hear the word, ‘relationship’.  This opinion is pertaining to any kind of relationship whether it be work, friendship, significant other or even family members.

If you have some one in your life who is taking from you way more than they are giving to you, then it’s time to really assess the situation.  The type of relationship and history will determine how aggressive you go about the resolution. For example if a child of yours keeps asking for money or running to you whenever they have a problem waiting for you to give them all the answers, then you are doing more harm than good-by allowing them to continue this.  A serious talk would be in order here where you tell this flesh of your flesh, blood of your blood, that it’s time to grow up. You would break it down further than that, but you get the main idea.

The Big Foot

Now, if you’ve had this conversation many, many times already, it’s time to go hard.  It will hurt at first but trust that cutting them off will be the best thing you can do for them.  You won’t necessarily ‘close their account’ as stated in the metaphor above, but it will be more of a ‘suspension’.  You suspend their account until they know how to use it responsibly.  Let’s look at friendship now, as I see this to be the situation where aggressive maneuvers would be more commonly used.

Everyone has that friend, some of us have more than one of them.  Those people who always want you to do something for them, but when you need something they have an excuse or they’re nowhere to be found.  You’ll know when it’s time to close this account.  You’re probably way past due as you read this.  You’re just worried about the repercussions or aftermath. Throw it out the window.  If this really concerns you, go ahead and have one long, serious conversation with this person telling them how you feel.  You feel like you’re being taken advantage of and that’s not what friends are for. If they respond negatively or act like they understand then quickly go back to the same behaviors, say adios.

The truth is no matter how strongly you value a relationship, you have to remember that your well-being is the main priority of your life.  This might sound selfish, but if you think about it, it’s really the opposite.  Even if you enjoy helping others and you should, you can not help anyone else if you’re not balanced. It’s time to take a long look at your relationships assets and liabilities.


March 13 2017

The Road To Success Is Like An Obstacle Course


If you woke up tomorrow and found out that you had just inherited 1 million dollars,  how long do you think the money would last? I bet most of you are thinking, “that’s enough to keep me set for life.” Don’t be so sure of that.  Believe it or not the probability of you squandering a million dollar inheritance is pretty high and there is a logical explanation for it.

How did you feel the last time you really worked hard for something and finally got it? That new car, that cool leather jacket, that big house on the hill with the in ground pool, whatever your goal was, close your eyes and think about a time this happened.  It was a great feeling wasn’t it?  It probably still is.  I bet you were really careful to protect your shiny new accomplishment and did whatever you could to make sure nothing happened to it.  Now think about a time something simply fell in your lap as a result of blind luck.

Let’s say you guessed most of the answers on your last quiz and got an A, or you drove 100 MPH passed a State Trooper and his head was down or he was stopping someone else. Would you count your blessings and try to never do it again? Be honest.  Yes, we both know the answer to that question don’t we?

Luck, good fortune, or for the logical thinkers out there, ‘probability’ will always fool a person into thinking they are somehow special. That things will always work out for them in the end without any real hard work or discipline.  This is why gamblers go broke.  This is why one hit wonders never top the charts twice.  This is why fighters get their asses kicked right after beating what everyone believed was a superior opponent. This is why people give up before reaching their goals. Real success is not handed to you, it is earned.

When you earn something you get a special feeling inside that can never be taken from you. You cherish this feeling and remember what it took to get rewarded with it.  That is the very thing that makes you think twice about taking certain things for granted.  That is something that is absent from any other form of ‘success’.

March 13 2017

You Owe You

This video is 7 mins.  I suggest you watch every second.

Dr. Eric Thomas is one of my favorite motivational speakers. His energy seemed to be genuinely fueled by his desire to encourage others to stop making excuses and fight for their future.  In addition to his words, he has the back story to make them even more powerful.

I read this man’s book and oh is it a life changing read.

After running away from an abusive household and choosing to live on the streets rather than go down a path he knew was destined to lead to a dead-end, Eric Thomas went against the grain and challenged the bullish streets of Detroit to a fight that only one of them would survive. WATCH THE WHOLE 7 MINS. It will change your life!

March 13 2017

You Are Not Machines!

So,  you want to live in a fantasy world? Okay. Some of the best motivational speeches from movies.

The Charlie Chapman speech is particularly engaging as it was produced decades ago and is still relevant today. I kid about people being in a fantasy world. The arts are a reflection of the times and reading and watching fictional stories are very effective ways to explain real life events.  Enjoy!