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Motel Hell

Keith Milford's Motel Hell is a blog that collects postcards of American motels and reststops. If you loved Phaidon's Boring Postcards books (and who doesn't?) you'll love the damp, moldy smell of this site.

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Win a Free MacMini!! (or not)

Do those ads offering free MacMinis/iPods/iBooks really work? Is it all just a big scam? Well, yes and no. Hardy Menagh from LowEndMac.com dives in and tries to surface with a free mini.Yes, You Can Get a 'Free' Mac mini…

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Tomb of the Cybermen

Dir. Morris Barry
Tomb of the Cybermen is exactly the kind of DVD to pull out when you still have a cold a week later,
and can’t be arsed to do anything else.
One of the few surviving Patrick Troughton-era Doctor Who serials (most of which were thrown out by the BBC to make room on their tape shelves) and one of two available on DVD, this was thought lost until discovered in a Hong Kong basement in 1992. Proclaimed a “classic” by now-grown-up impressionable children who hadn’t seen it since, this four-part story fortunately is a cute dose of early Who.

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Two Uneasy Pieces

Unlikable: Two Road Movies
Dir. Alexander Payne
Five Easy Pieces
Dir. Bob Rafaelson

This week, while suffering from post-movie-premiere exhaustion, I finally got back to watching films. I have a stack of DVDs waiting and I’m set to tackle them.
And maybe subconsciously, I chose two men-on-the-road movies, “Sideways” and “Five Easy Pieces.” Twenty-four years separate these films, but there are many similarities, and I’ll comment on a few here.
Briefly, Sideways, for those who haven’t seen it, concerns two mid-life crises men on a week-long road trip to Santa Barbara’s wine country. The two–Paul Giamatti and Michael Haden Church–were roommates in college, and now Church’s Jack is about to marry–into money, we see, which would solve at least temporarily his failing acting career. Giamatti’s is an alcoholic wine connoisseur, a failed writer, with a failed marriage, and the inability to move forward. Over the week they both meet a woman each, and slowly Giamatti’s Miles grows up a little.
Five Easy Pieces stars Jack Nicholson as Robert, who we first meet working on an oil field in Wasco, CA. We might mistake Wasco for Waco, Texas, for all the oil and dust, but then again, we might mistake Nicholson’s Robert as just another minimum wage cracker until it’s revealed he’s the lone wolf son of a musical patriarchy. And when that patriarch has two strokes and is near death, Robert is called back up to the family’s retreat off the coast of Washington state.
Both Robert and Miles are in existential crisis, lost, unsure who they are, who they could be, and if anything lies ahead. So they take to the road, Robert on a trip towards the father, and Miles towards (metaphorically) the wife, as if to discover what went wrong.

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