Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince HD Screen Captures

Wednesday, July 15, 2009 | |

I went to a midnight showing of Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince last night, and I have to say it was fantastic. It was significantly darker than the other films in the series, which made for some creepy, stunning visuals. Below are a few screen captures from the HD trailer. Even if you don't understand the Harry Potter mania, go see this film for the many, many moments where the cinematography and visual effects will blow you away.
Click for full-sized images!

July 14 - NOT BUYING IT: Today in Bad Ads

Tuesday, July 14, 2009 | |

Dear Pledge cleaning projects, you have this series of commercials where you trap women in glass box rooms which they have to clean.

Literally trapped in glass boxes with nothing to do but clean. There are plenty of these ads, yet no one thought a man could possibly be appropriate for the series. Only women work in this scenario where someone is held captive with the sole purpose of cleaning. Somehow I don't think it's a critical comment on the plight of the repressed housewife. Not in the good way at least.

Seriously Pledge? Seriously!?

Bat For Lashes - Daniel

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Highlights from Paris Couture, Fall 2009

Thursday, July 9, 2009 | |

Jean Paul Gaultier



Christian Dior

Armani Privé

See the full collections at Style.com

July 9 - Pic o' the Day

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From Ricardo Tisci's Autumn/Winter 2009 Haute Couture collection for Givenchy, shown in Paris on July 7.

The Best Albums of 2009: Halfway There!

Tuesday, July 7, 2009 | |

Here's my top 8, because landmark numbers are overrated.

1. Animal Collective - Merriweather Post Pavilion
2. Fever Ray - Fever Ray
3. Grizzly Bear - Veckatimest
4. Dirty Projectors - Bitte Orca
5. Neko Case - Middle Cyclone
6. Dan Deacon - Bromst
7. Röyksopp - Junior
8. Bat For Lashes - Two Suns

July 6 - NOT BUYING IT: Today in Bad Ads

Monday, July 6, 2009 | |

So this one is a classic, as far as revolting wastes of minutes go. You've probably seen it a million times. It's for Cymbalta, a drug used to treat physical pain resulting from depression. But just to really convince you, Eli Lilly would like to make sure that you remember the psychological part of the disease.

The original commercial (not the one embedded below) asks, "Where does depression hurt? Everywhere. Who does depression hurt? Everyone". It's a creepy call and response, using adorable children and whimpering dogs to exploit feelings of guilt that people with depression tend to be hard-wired for. Seeking treatment for mental disease because it's affecting others certainly may lead to a prescription, but it represents a mindset that doesn't promise a lot of willingness to seek help for the benefit of oneself (which in my experience, due to the power of the mind, can render any drug or therapy ineffective). The commercial seems to encourage giving into feelings of guilt over someone acknowledging "Hey, the chemicals in your brain are doing crazy things to your behavior. Here's an option!".

Basically, I'm not entirely sure what purpose any commercial for depression serves, other than making people aware of the disease. Chances are, finding the right treatment does not involve channel surfing to find some wonderdrug that your trained, professional doctor is unaware of. This seems as obvious as that intelligent questions that some other ads for secondary depression treatments ask, "Did you know that 2 out of 3 people being treated for depression still feel symptoms? WHAT??? Noooo. It can't be. Have some more! Yes, we are implying that if you just take this stuff it will ALL go away. Because that's possible".
It ain't all sunshine and kittens being treated for depression, even pharmaceutical companies should be responsible enough to refrain from portraying it as such. Because, you know, those unstable people they're fishing for might be a little disappointed.

Red-Band Trailer for DEADGIRL

Friday, July 3, 2009 | |

Silly teenagers and their bloody antics.

White Lies - To Lose My Life

Wednesday, July 1, 2009 | |

This is the video for "To Lose My Life" by White Lies, directed by Andreas Nilsson. While I'm not actually crazy about White Lies (as they seem to be yet another Interpol/Editors/The Killers), Nilsson makes beautifully haunting videos, and this is certainly one. His next project was Fever Ray's exceptional first video, "If I Had a Heart", which I highly recommend you view on his website.