Bill Paxton’s characters always seemed like they were up to some mischief, or, failing that, up for some. The hint or indicator springs from the face, and his was a deceptively expressive one, with its deep, handsome lines, wide, slightly gap-toothed smile, and flinty grey-blue eyes that fairly danced with life, ill-contented to ever sit idly by while others made their mark or had their fun, desperate to be wherever, and with whomever, the action was. Action became Bill Paxton’s calling card over time, but he brought the same levels of play and professionalism to grade-Z schlock that he did to ponderous prestige pictures, and reliably came out of the transaction as one of the most memorable things on the screen. The kind of resume and cinematic archive he now leaves to the ages couldn’t possibly be the product of luck alone. Continue Reading
Oh, I definitely know I’m late. Believe me when I say that I have no wish to belabor the foul memory of 2016 any further than is absolutely necessary. Truly, it was a vile year, brimming with breathtaking, heartbreaking upheaval on both a political and societal level, and a cavalcade, practically a mocking, extended holiday parade, of unfortunate mortal departures from the worlds of art and film and music, such that I’d never before quite experienced in my own four+ decades on this rock. Eventually, of course, you grow old enough that your heroes die. It’s as incontrovertible as the sunrise. 2016, then, was the year that stated that truism for the record unequivocally, then restated it, reinforced it, and underlined it like an unbalanced grade school teacher a thousand times in neon ink. Continue Reading
After a charmed, inspiring, dependably hardscrabble nine-game winning streak that might as well have paired with Oscar-winning Jerry Goldsmith accompaniment and protective detail from a coterie of animated Disney mice, the Pittsburgh Steelers’ gilded royal coach turned back into a pumpkin Sunday night in the manner and place it has so many times over the years, against the New England Patriots in the AFC Championship game. Before a justifiably frenzied crowd of 66,000 jolly Affleckian sub-townies, Boston chowderheads, Revolutionary War reenactors, and other loveable regional stereotypes, the Steelers’ resurgent, frankly overachieving defense picked an auspicious occasion and opponent on/against which to revert to general ineffectiveness, and its offense could not make up the difference. Continue Reading
also appearing: The Black Dahlia Murder, Misery Index
Agora Ballroom, Cleveland, Ohio – November 11, 2016
Though it’s easy to imagine the opposing viewpoints, it is all but impossible to be of two minds regarding Napalm Death, the inimitable, uncompromising extreme music institution that sprung like a bio-weapon from the industrial grit of Birmingham, England over thirty years ago. In that disposition, the restless, resilient grindcore pioneer is, ironically, very much of a piece with its most recently identified natural enemy, semi-scrupulous billionaire real estate mogul Donald J. Trump Continue Reading
Every 25th post, darkadaptedeye takes a planned break from normal business to plumb the shallow depths of its author’s psyche and/or overtly explore the locked attic of memories it only ever really dabbles in otherwise. You might think of it as a pit stop, or maybe a soft reboot. In “Danse Macabre”, Stephen King termed his own such digression “An Annoying Autobiographical Pause”, which I choose to think was kind of charming. Please know I take seriously the challenge of making patent self-indulgence interesting – actual results be damned – and I appreciate you being game. We’ll return to our irregularly scheduled programming shortly…
You can’t get here from there. Believe me, I’ve tried.
What you are currently reading is the third drastically different iteration of/attempt at DAE’s milestone 150th post – labored over, intermittently but to an insipid degree, over a five-month hiatus during which bystander and well-wisher alike could’ve been forgiven for believing I’d abandoned the store entirely instead of merely neglecting it shamefully. Continue Reading
“Har-ry! The lady fair is waiting for her knight in shining corduroy!”
Whether or not we might remember or care to acknowledge it, the world owes a debt to the creators of EC Comics, the trailblazing, still romanticized horror imprint that thrived throughout the 1940s and into the 1950s. At the dawn of the Cold War, a period that would seize the globe in a vice grip of apprehension for decades to come, EC titles such as The Vault of Horror and Tales from the Crypt subtly defused the steadily mounting popular paranoia in their young readers by getting them to focus instead on stirring yarns concerning implacable, supernatural terrors, in effect teaching them, at a time when the threat of nuclear annihilation seemed increasingly real, if not yet omnipresent, to maybe stop worrying so much about the bomb, a solid decade before Kubrick and Dr. Strangelove took their own crack at it. Sure, EC seemed to say, the world is a dangerous place, but that’s conventional thinking, not to mention boring. Continue Reading
NOTE: What follows is a long, winding, bumpy, and circular road, even for this blog. Caveat reador.
My relationship with Ticketmaster – the nefarious online concert access cartel – has been a long and contentious one, though never particularly complicated. My feelings on the subject are not at all mixed but, rather, pure as the driven snow. Ticketmaster stands not just in mere ideological opposition to me. It vexes me, tweaks me with purpose and zeal, and does just about everything during our regular, uncomfortable interactions but spit in my eye. It is my rival, my enemy, my nemesis, and the bane of my concert going existence, which has otherwise brought me so much joy, both fleeting and lasting, and memories built for a lifetime’s contented recollection. Continue Reading