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Never Trust Your Friend's Movie Recommendations #GBE2


Let's make something perfectly clear. Movie recommendations and criticisms that close friends and associates share with us are very useful when choosing a title to watch. Their reviews from an average movie goer's perspective are what convinces other people to give a relatively unheard of movie such as "The Way Back" starring Saoirse Ronan and Colin Farrell a chance. It's also what causes movie lovers to add a crazy title like "The Experiment" starring Forrest Whitaker to his or her Netflix queue.

Still, it is never wise to always trust movie recommendations from your friends as the sole reason to ignore a title (or even watch a title that you may not be interested in, unless your friend's comments are positive and very pursuasive) or prepare yourself for possible disappointment. Friends may know what they are talking about when telling you that a movie sucks or is the greatest thing since "Avatar" or whatever, especially if they share your preferences in movies. However, many of us often miss out on what could become our favorite films to date by judging a movie's quality based on our friends ratings of them.

"Love & Basketball" was popular during its release and became a favorite film among what seems like a majority of the movie going public or at the very least, African-American movie goers. I have several friends who are among the very vocal and devoted "Love & Basketball" champions that think my utter dislike for this title is outrageous. It is kind of funny and ironic, as I feel the same way about the movie. "Love & Basketball" is me.

On the flip side, I happen to love "Blue Valentine" but know at least two people who do not like this film. One of them, Smurfdok, did not watch it because the subject matter turns him off and the other person is Fiercechick, who saw it in the movie theater and did not become a fan of the film. No matter how much she loves Ryan Gosling, I am in no more a position to convince her to place “Blue Valentine” on her list of top ten favorite films than anyone who can persuade me to enjoy watching a movie as annoying as “Love & Basketball.”

If I refused to check out “Blue Valentine” based on the fact that I know people who do not like the film, I would have missed out on a really good picture. If you are into sporty romance dramas that have a particularly strong focus on African-American relationships at home, in the community and higher education, then asking me if I think you should watch “Love & Basketball” is not the best idea.

The next time a friend (or co-worker, fuck buddy, neighbor or even a bartender who has no friends of his or her own) tells you that a movie sucks OR tells you that a movie is awesome, get a second opinion from, um.....yourself....before overlooking a possible gem at the box office or wasting your time on a title that isn’t all that it’s cracked up to be such as the oh, so boring “In the Bedroom.” Is this movie good (in my opinion)? Yes. However, it is too damn long! Or is it? Don’t take my word for it. Watch “In the Bedroom” for yourself and then let me know if you agree or disagree with my assessment of the boring scenes and lengthy running time.

How much influence does Your friends have on which movies you decide to watch?

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The Other Side of Disneyland: Depressing Marriages in Film #GBE2 #MondayMovieMeme #MovieRentals

Group Blogging Experience,Monday Movie Meme

Hollywood may have the reputation for painting romantic relationships like a fairytale where someone gets swept off of his or her feet, married and then live happily ever after in love. Film always tends to have an impact on real-life relationships whether that was the writer, producer or director’s intention or not. Do I need to even mention that whole “The Notebook” fiasco where Ryan Gosling’s romantic gesture cost one real-life guy his fiance’s hand in marriage? Fortunately, there are films offering more practical stories on the big screen and thus providing a healthy balance of real-life scenarios that remind us all that not every relationship has a happy ending.

“Revolutionary Road” is one of these films and I am both appreciative and saddened to watch it this past weekend. I appreciate watching it finally because Leonardo DiCaprio and Kate Winslet are actors whom I like in most of the films that they choose to star in. I also appreciate developing a different stance on abortion while watching this movie but that is an entirely different post and discussion to have altogether. For all of the aspects that I enjoy....and there are many that I won’t name here, “Revolutionary Road” still made me sad because I wanted the main characters’ marriage to get better, not worse.

Group Blogging Experience,Monday Movie Meme

The couple in this film had a relationship that was so unpredictable at times, it was like a seesaw. One minute, they are laughing and complimenting each other and the next minute, they are arguing and reminding each other of what makes them either regret or loathe their relationship and home. What makes matters worse is that these two characters are parents, so children are involved in the equation and it is a shame because the little ones always seem to suffer the most in the end. The big kicker in “Revolutionary Road” though is that no matter their problems, Frank and April Wheeler’s marriage did not end in a divorce. Unfortunately, divorce may have been a little easier for viewers.....and at least one of the Wheelers to handle.

*This post serves as my interpretation of this week’s Group Blogging Experience picture prompt and focuses on a film in honor of the Monday Movie Meme, which has been on a little hold upon the introduction of the oh, so precious Baby Bumbles.

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The Madlab Post Turns 5: Out with the Old and In with the New! #AmWriting #Blogoversary #Blogathon #NaBloPoMo

WordCount Blogathon

Do you know what today is? It’s the 5th year Anniversary of this blog, The Madlab Post.

It feels like I started blogging a long time ago but five years isn’t really a long time. It is in filmmaking years, in my opinion but not in blogging years. The Internet isn’t even that old. In honor of The Madlab Post’s 5th year anniversary, here is a list of five of popular posts on this blog and another list of five plans and goals that I will set out to implement from this day forward. Also, enjoy a tune from Tony Toni Tone to end the day on a smooth note as we start a 7-day celebration filled with plans, parties and pretty pictures.

Popular Posts by The Madlab Post
Based on traffic, comments or a combination of the two.

1. Custom Movie Themed Cake Designs to Love - According to my blog statistics, this is one of the most visited posts of all time.

2. Successfully Cinematic and the Bigger Picture - My interpretation of the topic of “success” in Week 2 of the Group Blogging Experience placed this post in the top three posts that received the most comments from readers, excluding my own response comments.

3. 5 Ways Bootleg DVDs Make You Poor - While being among the top five to ten most visited posts on this blog ever, it is also among the posts that have received the most comments. It appears, everyone has their two-cents regarding bootlegs and movie piracy. Unfortunately, those two-cents seem to usually weigh in favor of the criminals, stealing, illegal downloads, etc.

4. My Blogging from A to Z Challenge Reflections Mega Post - At a whopping 27 comments which include some of my own, this leads the pack of posts with the highest amount of reader responses.

5. I Am a Sex Addict - Getting Dirty with Caveh Zahedi - Not only is this post one of several that has received the most visits within the last five years, it also has one of the longest comments ever received on a post on this blog.


Current and Future Plans

1. A Blog Renovation - This has already begun, starting with the new blog header that I requested readers to vote on or leave feedback on. The renovation will continue over the course of the next six months to include a new design, layout, home and branding.

2. TV Show Component - I’ve had a local, independently produced television program in development and then in the works for about 3 years now and it’s about time to get this thing rolling. The first few episodes are likely to air before late fall, depending on how my fundraising efforts turn out. Since it is local, only residents in the northern part of the east coast will be able to view it on television but each episode will also be available online on the station’s website and on my YouTube channel, which I plan to update as well because it’s been neglected for too long.

3. Blog Supporters Fundraiser - A simple dollar fundraiser is set to be conducted locally between this month and next month to raise funds for the blog renovation, TV show and local events that I would like to host for movie fanatics in town. Any remaining funds will be allocated toward two short film projects that I want to complete before year’s end as well as production funds for the feature film that I’ve postponed, yet again, until next year. I plan on partnering with a few local eateries to get the fundraiser rolling or at the very least, introduce the blog to more local readers.

4. Prizes, Interviews and Multimedia - Contests and sweepstakes on this blog will be increased to build momentum for new readers and veteran readers while I also conduct more interviews with fellow filmmakers and figures of interest in other fields such as publishing, music and law. I would also like for multimedia elements to play a role in some of the future posts on this blog such as videos, photos or photo journals and audio podcasts.

5. Helping Charities - After learning about Leonardo DiCaprio’s work with the World Wildlife Fund on a campaign to save tigers, I will use this blog to support more of the charitable contributions and activism interests of male celebrities chosen as King Dong on this blog.

What was your favorite post from this blog so far?

Do you agree or disagree with the current and future plans for this blog?

How should anniversaries for The Madlab Post be celebrated in the future?

and now, our feature presentation......

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