“Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen” Video Review

June 30, 2009

After recently watching Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen, I felt compelled to express my feelings towards the film the only way I knew how: Hastily editing together random film clips.

And you know what? This video still makes more sense than the film did.

If you would like an actual written review of the film that’s filled with my customary acerbic wit, sound off in the comments section and I will oblige. But it’s too late for me to write something now. After watching that film, I have to lie down and get some sleep as soon as possible. Perhaps in the morning my ears will stop ringing.


The House on the Rock: In a Nutshell

June 5, 2009

I recently went on a trip to visit The House on the Rock in scenic Spring Green, Wisconsin. I made this video to illustrate my thoughts on it. Enjoy.

If you would like more information concerning The House on the Rock, please consult Neil Gaiman’s American Gods and the music video for More Than This by the band 10,000 Maniacs.


The Cast of Bambi 2 Talk Shop

May 25, 2009

Constructive Criticism on Political Discourse

May 24, 2009

WARNING: Everything wrong with the internet, but specifically YouTube, is contained in this video. If you have a weak constitution, please avert your eyes.

I have some advice for the young lady featured in this video….
When making a YouTube video about your opinions concerning political figures, at least have the foresight and common decency to WIPE THE GODDAMN CLOWN MAKEUP OFF YOUR FACE FIRST. That way you’ll give others a chance — even if it’s a split second — of mistaking you for someone who has a knowledgeable perspective. (Actually listening to you, however, dashes all hope of that entirely.)

Also, another tip, if I may…. Starting off your rant with, “I’m not a racist, BUT…,” automatically means you’re racist. By acknowledging a separation in race first and foremost — even when you think you have good intentions — makes you a racist. There’s no going back from that. Not even saying “I have friends who are [the race you are hating on], so I’m obviously not a racist,” will help. You view and define people by their ethnicity, and therefore, are biased, to say the least, and unable to give objective opinions.

Finally, I know this is an on-the-spot vlog (video blog) entry, so there’s an air of spontaneity to this — I understand that. But did you stop and think for one second about what you were going to say before you started talking? Coming to (illogical) conclusions about your political opinions and broadcasting them on the internet should have SOME premeditation to it. Hell, videotaping yourself doing ANYTHING and uploading it on the most popular video sharing site on the planet should be thought out to some degree, infinitesimal as it may be.

Family members are going to see this. Co-workers are going to see this. Your boss is going to see this. Your former pastor is going to see this. Or current pastor… or rabbi…? Whatever, whoever. The point is this….

Is this how you want to be remembered — wearing cat makeup and mass-broadcasting your semi-racist gibberish on YouTube with the only apparent conceit of your vlog being to prove how clueless you are? Unless your endgame was to compete for the Dumbest Twat to Ever Spout Nonsense On YouTube award, I don’t even see the point in you making this video. Next time, THINK a little before you put garbage on YouTube.

To anyone who comes here and says, “Leave her alone. She’s young and stupid and doesn’t know any better,” I have this to say: If you’re old enough to get a webcam, videotape yourself and upload it on YouTube, you’re fair game. Period. Besides, I’m just trying to help her out.


Why am I short of attention?

May 7, 2009

Pop songs are based around melodic hooks and uncomplicated lyrics that easily get stuck in your head. When a pop song is outside of the periphery of regular listening and someone is exposed to it through random radio surfing and its use in commercials and movies, that person won’t remember how the entire song goes. Average listeners will only know the hooks, the chorus and random words.

Keeping this in mind, some guy out there decided to edit music videos to reflect only the parts of the song that he can remember. Have a looksie!

Okay, it’s out there and it’s stupid, but I laughed. Maybe you did, too…?

—-

TRIVIA TIME: For the actual music video to “You Can Call Me Al,” Chevy Chase memorized the lyrics while on the way to the video shoot by listening to the song in the car. That’s how a professional gets it done.


Now that’s what I call muzak!

April 23, 2009

Songsmith is a new Microsoft program that allows the musically deficient to make shitty music — just like the professionals! Basically, you record yourself singing, the program reads your vocal track, checks for changes in pitch and rhythm and then places the recording on top of crappy instrumentals to make it sound like you’re being backed by a real, live computer. Er, I mean, band. Yes… band.

To be honest, it’s a lot more sophisticated than I am giving it credit for. Even though it sounds washed out and completely synthetic, the accompaniment at least changes with the vocals correctly and sounds (kind of) like it belongs. However, you have to take the backing music that it gives you, regardless of what you were going for and wanted.

So now us plebs without talent can sound like we’re in a band… but what about those who are already part of a band? What sort of accompaniment would Songsmith give an already popular song by an established musician? Well, kiddos, it appears the good denizens of the internet are providing the answer to that question, as people are uploading Songsmith-ified music videos onto YouTube.

Let’s have a listen to what pop music sounds like in Hell, shall we?

It appears that, in an alternate universe, The Go-Go’s are a popular calypso band. They certainly do have the beat, don’t they?

Apparently, Billy Idol is the voice of a generation… that enjoys bluegrass.

Motörhead’s tearful country-western ballad “Ace of Spades” swept the Grammys on Bizzaro Earth.

And now, I present the funniest thing I’ve seen in a long time….

When you hear the name “Ozzy Osbourne,” do you immediately think of “polka?” You will now.

And because I have to follow the crowd, here’s the Songsmith version of “Never Gonna Give You Up” by the incomparable Rick Astley. Please enjoy this even crappier rendition of one of the crappiest songs ever.


I fought the law…

March 25, 2009

For those not in the know, YouTube has had a bit of trouble recently with various record labels and movie distribution studios. The suits in charge of these multi-national media conglomerates want complete control of their creative property [ed. note: That they themselves didn’t actually create]. As such, they really get their panties in a twist when they see people upload videos that contain their copyrighted material to the largest video sharing site on the internet.

YouTube has tried to fan the flames and strike deals with these media companies, as the people that own most of the accounts on their site are just regular Joes, like you or me. Since we can’t defend ourselves from these big companies should we accidentally (or not) encroach on their property, YouTube has accepted the role of moderator.

In a metaphorical way, YouTube is like the parent who is met with an, “I hate you,” by the child they had to scold. YouTube willingly accepts the blame when people yell at them for taking down their video because it used a clip from a TV show or a snippet from a song owned by these companies. But like a scolded child, our lashing out against YouTube is just a knee-jerk reaction that we don’t really mean. The real enemy isn’t YouTube — they’re just saving their asses from getting sued. The enemies are the litigious companies that threaten YouTube. (And the media companies would call us the enemy.)

One deal that YouTube has come up with is to have advertisements for the movie/song in question embedded as pop-up ads in the video itself. The page which hosts the video will also have banner ads on it, displaying information that’s (sometimes) relative to the video’s content. Not a bad deal, right?
Well, several companies didn’t take kindly to that — they wanted COMPLETE CONTROL of their assets, and so they pulled out. Now YouTube has been forced to institute a zero-tolerance policy with ANY video that has anything to do with NBC/Universal, UMG, Viacom and (since December) Warner Music Group. I want you to understand that when I say zero-tolerance, I mean ZERO-tolerance.
Yes, even if you’re in the band, your record label won’t let you upload your own music videos to YouTube.

I told you all of that so that I could tell you this: I recently had a dust up with YouTube.
With my Inappropriate Soundtracks (refer to the sidebar for a link to my YouTube page), I mix and mash up music with film to make a pop culture casserole made of crap. As you can imagine, given the current climate over at YouTube, I’ve had my fair share of run-ins with copyright infringement. I’d argue that it’s parody/satire and since I’m not making money off of them, it could be considered fair use, but it doesn’t matter. (Zero-tolerance, remember?) I’ve had about 8 videos total get taken down at YouTube due to copyright infringement, but the video I uploaded this morning was special.

They allowed the video to stay, but they removed the audio because I used a song owned by the Warner Music Group in it. I was left in a weird situation; my videos NEED the music to be funny, but I didn’t feel like taking down the video after all the work I put into it and after several people had already seen it. What was I to do?

Well, I took a stand and turned the video into a platform in which to present the copyright issue as satire. I added (childish) annotations to the video making fun of WMG and how companies view us Joe YouTubes. Click the link below to see the fruits of my labor. I hope you get a chuckle.

[My mute, yet annotated, Wizard of Oz Inappropriate Soundtrack video]