Archive for May, 2011

trailer for “midnight in paris ”

Owen wilson movies cant go wrong . written and directed by woody allen ! . starring Adrien Brody, Owen Wilson, Marion Cotillard, Rachel McAdams, Kathy Bates, Michael Sheen and French First Lady Carla Bruni .
Intriguing .


“Kung Fu Panda 2” review

voldemort couldn't look this pretty

Color me surprised . I didn’t expect the movie to be this good . (the trailers don’t do it justice)

Okay , the tale aint so genuine , there are bits and pieces in the story stolen from pretty much all the other big movie franchises ( you will be reminded of harry potter , lord of the rings and even the matrix ) .
Cant blame anybody though , the best tale of the series was already told in the first movie (po becoming the dragon warrior) , so for those of you who haven’t seen kung fu panda 1 , it is highly recommended you do , before seeing this one .    The story takes the harry potter route by introducing a pesky little peacock called lord shen  who is the reason for po being an orphan . ( prophecies state that shen would be killed by a panda , so he kills almost all pandas )
Lord shen , though slightly skilled in combat is also a master of projectile fire weapons ( canons) that can defeat most kung-fu masters from afar (one of his side quests is to conquer china and remove kung fu from it entirely) .
you pretty much can guess the remaining story from here (hint , introduce matrix like moments) .

a stare down (look into his eyes , you may see the theater audience)

BUT the writing , humour and visuals are amazing !!
this time around you get to see a LOT more epic fights , a lot more witty humour , a lot more moments of pure awesomeness !
there is even a flashback scene that shows BABY PO , so lots more amazing animal cute moments !!!  (I now want a baby panda)

The cast too , this time around is utilized much more , though most of them (furious five) speak very little , all that comes out of their mouths is really funny .
Especially master shifu (dustin hoffman) who spoke maybe 5 lines of dialogue the entire movie , but all lines were just pure laugh out loud hilarious .
Angelina Jolie’s tigress too , is more better used now , more like an emotional rock to po.
Lord shen (played by the wonderful Gary Oldmen, AKA commissioner Gordon ) , the new villain , though not as  dangerous as the first movie’s “tai lung ” , has a more personal history with po , he killed po’s parents , and now po is destined to beat him . Shen is wonderfully animated , his peacock feathers are just beautiful when in motion . And he is not bad at creating some great funny moments too . (I don’t want to spoil anything for you people )
Jack black as po is still amazing as ever .
jean claude vandamme  also join the club. (as a kung fu crocodile)

The visuals this time are much more prettier . I remember watching kung fu panda 1 on blue ray and felling a little underwhelmed (the fur and special effect were nice , but not enough) , but this one fixes those annoyances by putting in way more special effects (shader effects) that are just begging to be seen in HD . the entire climax scenes would look gorgeous in HD . So much more color than the previous movie .

At the audio front , the score by hans zimmer (the dark knight) and john powell (how to train your dragon)  had me humming the tunes even after i left the theatre  (with me trying to throw fireballs and trying to find my inner peace ).

overall :   9/10  or  A-

Though not as original as the first movie , everything is forgiven thanks  all to the beautiful kung fuuuuu !!
I am gonna go watch it again soon , this movie is just pure fun for everybody .

Flickr integrated !

to see the captions ,  view full screen , and click show info ! 

“Quick” laptop buying guide

dont let the wallpapers and looks fool you . This is probably some stupid netbook .

* graphics :
ALWAYS go for a laptop with at least a low-end nvidia or ATI graphic card   (direct x 11 at least).
I prefer nvidia coz they have a feature called digital vibrance that really enables amazing colors and clarity on the screen , TRUST ME  it makes a lot of difference (especially for watching HD movies).
ATI card enabled laptops  generally have slightly more power and are cheaper . but screen clarity is often sacrificed .
The graphic card can contribute a hefty amount of processing power to the laptop .
Other than games and videos , graphic cards are also used to  run the aero and visual features of  windows 7
Graphic cards usually come in 3 ranges  low , medium and high-end graphic cards.
LOW end cards  : in laptops usually within 250 kd ,  can play most games , though not in their highest resolutions and without full settings . (geforce 9200 , gt 320m ,  gtx 420 , gtx 530 ..etc) . u need at least , a low-end card to play games like street fighter 4 (the gameplay i posted below this post , im playing it with a geforce 9200m gs)  or call of duty black ops .
MEDIUM end cards : should be in below 400 kd laptops . can play games smoothly in high resolutions and with most settings on high. (geforce 9600 , gtx 450 , gtx 560 ..etc)
HIGH end cards : usually in laptops above 400 kd  ( like alienware , most of them are hard to find in stores , must be preordered ) . For playing games in their highest resolutions (1900X1080) and every setting on HIGH ( even anti aliasing).  (geforce 9800 , gtx 580 , gtx 680 + )
oh and get laptops with at least 15 inch screens .
13 inch screens provide slightly better sharpness and better battery life , but they are terrible to look at and have pathetic aspect ratios and colors .
DO NOT , buy a laptop with intel HD graphics .

*processor :
considering current generation intel processors , anything ” i5 and above” should be sufficient for the next couple of years .
i3 range of processors  are quite underpowered so DO NOT buy  i3 .
I suggest getting a  “medium end”  last gen (core 2 duo) processor than getting an i3 . (people who bought it here encountered slowdowns during heavy tasks)
if u just want to play videos  , documentation and presentation work , play  small games (CS , old need for speed games,fifa)  then the  i3 is more than sufficient .
(processors usually heavily effect tasks such as  multi tasking , file transfers , video conversion , video playing ..etc)

*RAM :
At least  3GB ram is highly required for running windows 7 smoothly.
(I have tried it on a 512 mb ram PC , windows 7 without its aero effects take around 256 mb ram on startup  , so you will only have 50 % (around 200mb) of memory to run applications , plus if you try to multi task apps , expect a lot of slowdowns and hungups )

*disk space :
350 GB is usually sufficient , but more the merrier . I say 1TB if u can afford it 🙂 .
its safer to keep important files in an external hard disk .

*additional features :
security features like face detection and fingerprint scanners are awesome , and works great on most laptops . a bundled anti-virus is also great . new features like USB 3.0 and thunderbolt will be awesome .  more USB ports , the merrier and don’t forget to look for laptops with HDMI ports , so you can easily plug it into HDTV screens .

* operating system  :
If you are technically able , getting a laptop WITHOUT an operating system is actually an excellent choice  as it removes a large amount from the total price tag .
you can install an OS of you choice later 😉
I recommend windows 7 ultimate .

*warranty :
Extremely important in . Things can get damaged or stolen EASILY in India . Get an international warranty if you are buying from abroad   else get a laptop from India with 3 years warranty.

*battery life :
6 cell batteries at least . if u have a powerful laptop , chances are it will have pathetic battery life .
if u want great battery life go for laptops with below 15 inch screens , graphic cards, crappy processors  and net books.

Always try to get a laptop within the 200 – 300 kd mark with the above configurations.
Cause most of the laptops can’t be future upgraded ,  you will feel sorry 3 years later when new powerful systems arrive .
Make sure the price is justifiable .
Sometimes laptops cost a lot (because it is designed well) , BUT wont have  highly desired features (a descent graphic card or a proper OS) and is not comparable to cheaper models .
eg. dell alienware’s are great for gaming , but they aren’t exactly justifiable , since most games do not actually require all that power , most high-end other brand laptops can easily play the games at slightly lesser setting and  cost  much lesser too.
same situation for MAC’s , you can’t play games and software support for the mac is limited compared to the windows laptops .

*important :
Sometimes cheap laptops will have just what u need .
friend of mine bought a Toshiba satellite laptops for 38,000 rs . it has a low-end processor , crappy screen , terrible built-in speakers (headphones are louder)  BUT it had a  “medium end” ATI graphic card  and amazing battery life (6hrs+) .
I have a laptop with a medium end processor , beautiful screen , amazing speakers  BUT   a  low-end Nvidia graphic card  and average battery life ( – 4hrs).
I WANT his laptop . HE can  play new games at high-resolution and all setting on high . I can’t  ;(
( I hope you understand what I am implying here)

*brand  :
chose one with a descent amount of service centers in your area . and with less technical issues .
HP (the current generation models are amazing)  and TOSHIBA (amazing build quality but very few service centers here) are my top favorites .
ASUS is also makes excellent powerful laptops for descent prices .
DELL is great but slightly over priced . friend of mine bought a dell xps  and it was a mess . he had to replace pretty much everything .
BUT they have the best warranty and service centers . they replaced everything except the screen of my friends laptop under the warranty (he didn’t have to spend a dime ).

u have LOTS OF MONEY and DO NOT  want to game or  run powerful applications , get an APPLE MAC BOOK 😛  or a netbook 😀 .

recomendable MODELS :   HP envy and dv6 series , dell xps (only the high-end ones) series , toshiba satellite series (the one my friend got) ,  ASUS g-series

the perfect defence vs offence match .
most of bisons moves are entirely defensive . so in a tight spot he has trouble getting out . but keepin the opponent at a distance , he can easily defeat them .
ken on the other hand is quite fast and is usually completely offensive . barrage of attacks and combos .
bison (me) was almost completely dominated . thankfully the defence stood

im loving fraps (software to record gameplay )
got lucky and beat seth “perfect” in the 1st round .
second round he puts up a fight .
thankfully i didnt waste my revenge meter .
seth is the hardest character to fight in the game cause of his diverse moves (he steals moves of other characters )

humour in darkness

i was reading detective comics issue #887 today . the story had batman (dick grayson ,the first robin, not bruce wayne) go after some mobsters and criminals out to kill the daughter of tony zucco (head of a crime family) .
the page before this one , batmanwas talking to gordon about not trusting the daughter , after which batman realizes that she was standing rite there .
dick grayson is more like spiderman than batman . hes new at the job (so i forgive his mistakes)
the conversation with red robin (tim drake , 3rd robin) in the next page was excellent .

super street fighter 4 arcade edition is coming up (july) ,
and for people who are wondering if their low end pc’s could run it , here …

this is street fighter 4 . super street fighter 4 uses the same graphics engine . but has new characters and lots of new gameplay modes.
i was able to get 55-60 fps (fraps) on the laptop
(hp pavillion dv5 1126 . its 3 years old)
should run fine on most new laptops with a low end graphic card (intel ones dont count) .

i love playing with the keyboard (kinda like a flat arcade stick)
but you WILL need a controller to pull of moves of some characters (zangeif , guile ..etc) . they have moves that depend entirely on analog sticks turns .

fps : 55 – 60
settings : low – medium
resolution : 800 x 600

(i was able to get a 60 fps on my gt220 ( 1 year old , low end card ) in my PC too , with HD resolutions and all settings on high , except for antialiasing )

oh , and the above gameplay is on the “hardest” difficulty . im avoiding doing all aerial attacks coz vega takes advantage of those .

you gotta love akuma !

“Misfits” season 1 review

community work suits

Misfits is a british tv show that features 5 teens/young adults who happen to gain superpowers while working under community service (they arent exactly perfect citizens ) .
On their first day of community service they encounter an unusual storm over england that manages to give a lot of citizens supernatural powers . they too managed to gain some .

the first guy from the left , curtis has time reversing powers . he can go back in time and make changes accordingly without creating paradoxes . next , alisha bailey can cause men to lust towards her , kind of like a dumb poison ivy (batman villain).   Nathan Young  is effectively immortal and can interact with the recently deceased (his real superpower is his loud mouth that never stops insulting people ).  Kelly Bailey can hear people’s thoughts (telepathy and empathy), usually when somebody judges her, but later demonstrates control. Simon Bellamy initially turns invisible when ignored, and later at will.

The show has excellent writers . Screenplay and direction for each episode is brilliant . Check out at least the first three episodes before judging the show entirely . The acting by most of the cast is excellent . Especially by robert sheehan who plays “nathan young” who is lovable at every scene though can be most times a big douche for not thinking of others feelings .

The only issue i have with the show is that ,  some of the characters could easily fall under the “evil” category .
2 of the characters kill (accident or not , they do have a member who can reverse time ) innocent misunderstood people and feel no remorse whatsoever .
the only characters worth rooting for are  curtis and kelly . both of whom have some form of human sympathy to others .
the other 3 are just terrible (albeit interesting)  characters .

Excluding those minor annoyances , the how feels really original and has some great episodes .
must point out episode 4 , where curtis goes back in time  to prevent himself from getting caught , but he makes mistakes every time he changes history (the future is drastically changed) . Finally he realizes that he  has to set history in such a way that he sacrifices his release for his loved ones , its an action packed episode with some great writing.

the show has 2 season so far . each season has only 6 episodes but all well done .

im loving the battlefield 3 vs modern warfare 3 fanboy showdowns online .
battlefield 3 showed an amazing  gameplay trailer a mmonth ago .

now call of duty fights back . and now im inclined to return to mw3 .

“batman incorporated #6” review

For people who dont have a clue about the batman comic book universe ,  u could begin with the current arc (batman incorporated) .
Penned by the grant morrison (the writer who currently enjoys the position of best batman writer ever . he wrote batman R.IP , the new “batman and robin” and the return of bruce wayne )  , this issue is just filled with so many bad ass scenes that im gonna post images of pages every once in a while .  issue no.6 is a catch up episode that morrison puts out once in awhile to deconfuse readers . (his stories are quite complex and comes out proper only at the climax issue)

Ever since the return of  Bruce Wayne (from death OR darkseid’s omega sanction that put him in a travel across time periods without his memory) .
Bruce Wayne’s  rules of “working alone”   have changed considerably . while travelling across time , he realized that batman’s mythic supernatural character has to be taken advantage of . HE IS CREATING AN ARMY OF BATMEN , people who will wear his colors across the globe in different cities .
on visiting the future he saw an evil he didn’t expect called leviathan . and now hes going after them .
Bruce Wayne has revealed to the world that he is the man responsible for batman (don’t get cracky yet) , he lets the world know that HE is the guy providing the funding for batman incorporated and is starting operations all across the world .
With many batmen in the world , the last person anyone will doubt is bruce wayne pulling the strings . (get it ? )
During the batman R.I.P arc , a lot of people got word that bruce wayne may be batman , so this puts them into confusion too.
oh and don’t worry about Gotham , while bruce was supposedly dead , Dick Grayson and Damien wayne have taken over the roles of batman and robin , and have Bruce’s blessings . (relax , read the current other batman titles , you will see that dick Grayson plays is an amazing batman)

Sure we’ve seen billionaire business guy publicaly “do something about it” *cough* Tony Stark *cough* but it’s not something Bruce Wayne would typically do. And I’m digging it.

Artist Chris Burnham continues to stand in for the originally solicited Paquette, and I don’t mind one bit.
check out this page too . Nice scene between the “BATMEN” and Gordon.