Archive for August 30th, 2009

Special Guest Post: Malibu Narwhal Shark Attack!


In yet another Multi Medium exclusive, I have contracted with the shadowy and mysterious awesome awful movie reviewer Codename V. for a hard-hitting in-depth review of the SyFy instant classic, Malibu Shark Attack. Enjoy!

“Malibu Shark Attack” or “Why Does Eli Hate Me?”

I promised Eli I would watch this movie and snark on it. It is easily one of the worst movies I have ever seen. It would be super if I could get my two hours back, k thx bye.

So Malibu Shark Attack is presumably set in Malibu. It opens with a bunch of mediocre looking people having beach-type fun. I find myself wondering why beach movies always show people surfing and playing volleyball when I have never seen anyone doing either of those activities at any beach I’ve ever been to. Also, they show the same shot of a woman in a black bikini turning over at least three times. Production values in full effect.

I gather there has been some kind of geological event, like an underwater earthquake or something. Some CGI sharks of questionable quality are swimming around. They look kind of like narwhals, wtf. Ten minutes in, and I have already abandoned any hopes I had of there being a coherent plot.

So you have a bunch of lifeguards, and they all seem to have soap-opera love drama. There’s Lifeguard Doug, some other male lifeguard who looks like a low-rent version of Jack from Lost (complete with Japanese characters tattooed on his arm), a brown-haired lady lifeguard who looks about 45 years old, and a blond woman who I’m pretty sure is a man. Oh, and they have this younger girl hanging around who apparently got busted for shoplifting and has to do community service. She’s whining about it, and I’m thinking y’know, as far as community service goes, doing 100 hours at the beach isn’t half bad.

But I digress. Love Drama. Brunette Lady has a dumpy boyfriend. Blonde Shemale and Low Rent Jack used to date, but now she’s dating a construction worker (Note: Construction Workers are the mortal enemies of Lifeguards). Miss Whiner has her eye on Lifeguard Doug. All of this is EXTREMELY VITAL to the development of the story.

Meanwhile, a narwhal eats a diver. Someone else appears to be doing actual scuba diving whilst wearing a snorkel mask. Miss Whiner wears an iPod around her neck and sings some song while randomly dancing around. As best as I can tell, the lyrics to this song are “itchy bitchy, itchy bitchy” repeated over and over. Brunette Lifeguard gets awkwardly proposed to by her dumpy boyfriend, and then they sneak off to have sex in the lifeguard hut. Because that’s what you do.

Are you confused yet? I sure am. Moving on. Low Rent Jack hops on a jetski and cruises over to the construction site to have a macho standoff with his love rival, Construction Man. Did I mention that Lifeguards and Construction Workers can never coexist peacefully? It’s a law of nature or something. Back on the ocean, some asshole parasailers are drinking beer and enjoying the company of topless women. I have seen like a gazillion horror movies, so I know this is a harbinger of death. Sure enough, a CGI narwhal jumps out of the water and eats them, and they bleed all over Shemale Lifeguard.

(Note: I realize narwhals aren’t sharks. However while taking notes for this review, I seem to have written OMFG NARWHALS!! down about a dozen times, so I’m just rolling with it.)

At this point there is a commercial break, so I phone Eli to ask him what I’ve done in a past life to have karma this bad. He tells me that the Shemale lifeguard is actually Peta Wilson of La Femme Nikita fame. I don’t recall Peta Wilson being a man. Seriously, she has a deep voice and a stocky build. No way is this Peta Wilson. And yet it is. The mind boggles.

Back to the show. OMG TSUNAMI!! At this point a bunch of shizz starts happening all at once. Lifeguard Doug shoots a narwhal. Brown Haired Lifeguard Lady points out that the narwhals are actually goblin sharks, which are supposedly super rare or extinct or something. Whatever. TSUNAMI!! They’ve all been standing around gawking at the CGI shark and therefore only have time to take shelter in the lifeguard hut. Because that’s a great idea. The TSUNAMI!! hits and we actually get a shot from the TSUNAMI!!’s point of view. SRSLY. Miraculously these morons all survive.

It’s like 40 minutes in and I have officially stopped caring. We see a news clip stating that the TSUNAMI!! is bigger than the 2004 one in Indonesia, and there have been “hundreds of casualties.” (1) Is it just me, or does this seem in poor taste? and (2) if it’s all that big, “hundreds of casualties” just seems laughable. Oh wait, I am putting way too much thought into this. Screw that noise.

Oh yeah, Miss Whiner gets a pretty serious cut on her leg, and Shemale has to stitch it up without anesthesia. The whole time Shemale keeps saying “I have to do this, or you’ll DIE. You don’t want to DIE do you? Because you will. You’ll DIE.” Whiner cries through the whole stupid ordeal and then bitches because her leg looks like some kind of Frankenstein mess.

Everyone wants to kill the sharks except for Brown Haired Lifeguard. She makes this big impassioned speech about how they’re rare omfg and think of the contributions to science blah blah blah. And then she promptly gets eaten by a narwhal. HAHA. Serves you right, hippie. At this point, her dumpy boyfriend officially becomes That Guy Who Has Nothing To Live For So What’s The Point Of Any Of You Trying To Survive, We’re Doomed All Doomed And We’re All Gonna Die. That sums up the remainder of his role, so just go ahead and forget he even exists.

Meanwhile the Construction people are doing… something. I honestly don’t give a shit. One of them is going to swim for it and gets eaten by a narwhal. And then a narwhal jumps up and grabs another one off the dock. Who the hell are these people anyway?

The lifeguards get all stabby and kill a narwhal with some harpoons. I’ve stopped caring again. Geez, I have a lot of split ends. I should really get a good deep conditioner. I wonder how long it would take me to trim each one individually… Oh look, Low Rent Jack finds a flare gun and narrowly avoids being spotted by a narwhal. And the Construction guys have found a boat. Way to go.

Oh, my bad. I was texting my friend Hillary. She has the funniest love life. What? Now everyone is stranded in a tiny boat, lifeguards and construction workers together. How is this possible? They are rowing to… where the hell are they? Oh, back at the construction site. This is so f-ing tedious.

Stuff kind of happens: Lifeguard Doug maims a narwhal with a circular saw. Low Rent Jack and Shemale hide out in a half-submerged car. That seems like a bad plan, but whatever. What do I know, I’ve never been in their position. Then they get out and he chainsaws a narwhal to death. Someone delivers the line “there was a shark in the parking lot,” which strikes me as a kind of surrealist screenwriting genius.

Why does Shemale have two guys fighting over her? She’s a MAN, people. And how the hell many of these sharks are there? I am just counting the minutes until it’s over. And then… it’s over. Some people live, but some died, and I can’t be bothered to know who they are.

So there you have it. Malibu Shark Attack. I hope you’re all deeply appreciative that I suffered for your entertainment.

August 30th, 2009 at 07:52pm Posted by Eli

Entry Filed under: Movies

Netroots Nation Progressive Impact Panel Photoblogging

Pics from the how-can-progressives-have-an-impact-on-the-legislative-process? panel:
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Moderator Darcy Burner, Joan McCarter/McJoan, and half of David Waldman/Kagro X.

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David Waldman and Chris Bowers.

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Chris Bowers and Jane Hamsher.

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Jane looks skeptical.

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McJoan looks skeptical.

August 30th, 2009 at 03:49pm Posted by Eli

Entry Filed under: Netroots Nation,People,Photoblogging,Rabid Lambs

Way Past The Last Straw

It’s not exactly news that both parties in this country are far too captive to corporate interests, but here’s yet another data point:

The FCC’s broadband task force is tasked with developing our national broadband policy. This is a project that FCC Commissioner Michael Copps ranks of the highest importance:


And so, because our government is run by corporations and for corporations even when it is controlled by Democrats, a telecom industry shill, Scott Wallstein, was named as economics director of that task force.  From a source close to the process, in the extended entry I proivde a thorough background on Wallstein’s industry connections and long history of fighting against American consumers:

[Exhaustive and depressing listing of pro-telecom wankery]

Snark aside, WTF?! Too many Democrats keep letting foxes into the henhouse. How many of our policies have to be dominated by bad-faith industry negotiators before we realize that continuing to give industry a seat at the policy table will never allow us to break away from our corporate kleptocracy? There better be a huge policy pay-off for consumers coming from this, but I am not holding my breath.

The legislative happenings of 2009 have brought the need for publicly financed elections and severe lobbying restrictions much closer to the forefront of my political thinking.  I don’t know how much support publicly financed elections might have in Congress, but there are good reasons to think that the situation will get worse before it gets better. The Supreme Court recently heard a case that could strike down the ban on corporate contributions to federal candidates.  As a party, we really need to start dumping bipartisanship and adopting a more populist attitude.

Amen on the need for publicly financed elections, but the trick is to get a majority (or supermajority) of incumbents to vote in favor of leveling the playing field for their challengers.  The campaign finance panel at Netroots Nation offered some encouragement, in that a lot of congresscritters are sick of spending huge chunks of their time begging for money instead of legislating or talking to their constituents (then again, a lot of them probably consider that a plus).

The public financing orgs like Change Congress and Public Campaign are also working on publicly shaming corporate mercenaries like Ben Nelson (it definitely got under his skin, but I’m not sure how much real impact it has either on him or his voters) and supporting public financing initiatives at the state level.

I think that last approach actually has the most promise, even though it’s a very long-term strategy.  I like the idea of building up a bench of progressive pro-public-financing state legislators who will be tomorrow’s senators and representatives, although there’s no guarantee that they won’t get corrupted as soon as they reach the federal level.

But until the money pipeline between corporations and elected officials is counterbalanced, our government is going to make the wrong decisions and hire the wrong people again and again.

August 30th, 2009 at 01:36pm Posted by Eli

Entry Filed under: Corruption/Cronyism,Democrats,Elections,Obama,Technology,Wankers

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