Monthly Archives: September 2009

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Watchmen: The Utlimate Cut DVD

Warner has announced 5-disc DVD ($43.87) and 4-disc Blu-ray ($59.99) releases of Watchmen: The Utlimate Cut for the 3rd November. As well as the “Ultimate Cut” of the film which integrates the animated Tales of The Black Freighter, each release will include 2 all-new audio commentaries with director Zack Snyder and illustrator Dave Gibbons, over 3 hours of special features (“The Phenomenon: The Comic that Changed Comics”, “Real Super Heroes, Real Vigilantes”, “Mechanics: Technologies of a Fantastic World”, “Watchmen: Video Journals”, “My Chemical Romance Desolation Row”, “Under The Hood”, “Story Within A Story: The Books of Watchmen”), a digital copy of the theatrical version, and Watchmen: The Complete Motion Comics.



Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince DVD

Warner Home Video has announced 1-disc DVD, 2-disc DVD, and 3-disc Blu-ray/DVD Combo releases of Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince for the 8th December. Extras on the 2-disc DVD will include featurettes on the cast and crew and the life of author J.K. Rowling, additional scenes, a sneak peek at the Universal Orlando Resort’s The Wizarding World of Harry Potter theme park, and a digital copy of the film. The Blu-ray release will include all that, along with a Maximum Movie Mode with the stars, director and producers, and BD Live features with Facebook Connect. Also available from the 8th December will be 6-disc DVD ($69.98) and 7-disc Blu-ray ($134.99) releases of the Harry Potter Years 1-6 Giftset which includes all 6 films.



Starbucks iPhone Apps

Starbucks Coffee Company has released two new applications for the iPhone and iPod touch. MyStarbucks offers users an interactive drink builder, with the ability to share your drink via email or SMS, a store locator, food and coffee menus, and a favorites feature for quick recall of past orders. A separate application, Starbucks Card Mobile, allows users to check their Starbucks Card balance, reload the card, view transactions, and, in 16 select test stores—located in Cupertino, Mountain View, Sunnyvale, and San Jose, CA, and Seattle, WA—users can actually pay with their Starbucks Card using only their iPhone or iPod touch. Both applications are available as free downloads from the App Store.


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MMS Finally Comes to the iPhone

MMS has come to the iPhone 3G and the iPhone 3GS. You’ll need to update your carrier settings by plugging in your iPhone to allow iTunes to see it, then go to “Check for Update.” The install just takes a second and you then need to restart your iPhone. When you do, your Messages app will gain a small camera icon to the left of the input box. Tapping it will bring up a screen allowing you to take a picture or video or to use an existing one from your iPhoto library.



The Hangover DVD

Warner Home Video has announced 1-disc DVD ($28.98), 2-disc DVD ($34.99), and Blu-ray ($34.87) releases of The Hangover for the 15th December. The 2-disc DVD and Blu-ray releases will include unrated and theatrical editions of the film, a gag reel, more pictures from the missing camera, a host of other features (”Map of Destruction”, “The Madness of Ken Jeong”, “Action Mash-Up”, “Three Best Friends Song”, “The Dan Band!”), and a digital copy of the film.



iTunes 9.0.1 Now Available

Fire up your Software Updates, the new version of iTunes is here — with bug fixes and tweaks to help those who were suffering from iTunes 9 issues.


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LEGO Motorized Walking AT-AT

The most terrifying war machine in the Empire’s arsenal comes to life with the LEGO Motorized Walking AT-AT ($130). Once this challenging set is built, the AT-AT can lurch across your living room with the same lumbering gait as its movie counterparts. This beast can walk forward and backwards, and even turn its head. The incredibly detailed AT-AT includes four mini figures, which can sit in the opening cockpit, or hang from the grappling line as you recreate heart-pounding battle scenes. (From Playgrounder)



Stephen King Asks, “What’s Scary” In Upcoming Issues of Fangoria

Stephen King, the world’s best-selling author of horror and dark fantasy, has submitted an exclusive, all-new article for publication in Fangoria magazine. The 7,500-plus-word essay, entitled “What’s Scary,” will be published in two parts, beginning with Fangoria #289, on sale in December, and concluding in Fangoria #290, arriving in January 2010. “I’ve wanted to be a Fango contributor ever since I purchased my first issue,” King says. “For me, this is a nightmare come true.”

“What’s Scary” critiques the last decade of genre cinema, from 1999’s phenomenon The Blair Witch Project to this past summer’s surprise smash District 9. He also chooses his favorite films and touches on the recent flood of horror remakes and zombie flicks, making many surprising and enlightening observations.

“Stephen’s article not only arrives just in time for the holidays, but is also the perfect way for Fangoria to wrap up 2009, the year we celebrated the magazine’s 30th anniversary,” says Fango editor Tony Timpone. “It has always been a dream of mine to have King listed as a contributor on our masthead, and the fact that he has written enough for two issues is just icing on the cake.”

The author promises to answer the following questions in his piece (excerpted from his introduction): “First,” King writes, “why do so many so-called horror movies, even those with big budgets (maybe especially those with big budgets) not work? Second, why do fans of the genre such as myself so often go in with high hopes and come out feeling unsatisfied…and, worse, unscared? Third, and most important, why is it that others—sometimes that most unheralded others, those with teensy budgets and unknown, untried actors—do work, surprising us with terror and amazement?”


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McSweeney’s iPhone Application

Two of my favorite things combined today; McSweeney’s (the literary journal) announced the debut of the Small Chair, a weekly sampler from all branches of the McSweeney’s family created exclusively for the Apple iPhone. One week you might receive a story from the upcoming Quarterly, the next week an interview from the Believer, the next a short film from a future Wholphin.  Occasionally, it might be a song, an art portfolio, who knows. Early contributors will include Spike Jonze, Wells Tower, Chris Ware, and Jonathan Ames. This material will not be available online and is pretty sure to be good stuff.

The app will also deliver the daily humor from our Internet Tendency, specially formatted for the iPhone, along with news, updates, and announcements.

The Small Chair is available for the iPhone and can be downloaded from the App Store for $5.99. This will provide you six months of weekly excitement — a half-year of surprises, all delivered straight to your pocket.

mcsweeneys app

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New Moon Tracklist Reveals New Music From Thom Yorke, the Killers and Muse

As it turns out, Yorke’s song on the New Moon soundtrack is neither of the two tracks featured on his new single “Feeling Pulled Apart By Horses” b/w “The Hollow Earth,” as the Radiohead frontman has recorded a new song called “Hearing Damage” for the disc, which is out October 20th, a month to the day before New Moon hits theaters. The Killers also provided a new track called “A White Demon Love Song,” while Muse remixed their The Resistance song “I Belong to You for the soundtrack.

New Moon will also feature new music from Lykke Li, Black Rebel Motorcycle Club, Band of Skulls, Sea Wolf, Hurricane Bells, Anya Marina, Editors and the film’s composer Alexandre Desplat. OK Go, who gave the film a new track called “Shooting the Moon,” talked to Rolling Stone earlier this year about their song, which they described as a sad song written from the perspective of an astronaut.

Check below for the full New Moon track list:

1. Death Cab For Cutie – “Meet Me On The Equinox”
2. Band Of Skulls – “Friends”
3. Thom Yorke – “Hearing Damage”
4. Lykke Li – “Possibility”
5. The Killers – “A White Demon Love Song”
6. Anya Marina – “Satellite Heart”
7. Muse – “I Belong To You (New Moon)”
8. Bon Iver and St. Vincent – “Roslyn”
9. Black Rebel Motorcycle Club – “Done All Wrong”
10. Hurricane Bells – “Monsters”
11. Sea Wolf – “The Violet Hour”
12. OK Go – “Shooting The Moon”
13. Grizzly Bear – “Slow Life”
14. Editors – “No Sound But The Wind”
15. Alexandre Desplat – “New Moon (The Meadow)”


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Coraline Studio Scraps Computer-Animated Feature Plans


The Oregonian reports that Nike co-founder Phil Knight’s Portland movie studio Laika laid off 63 people in its computer animation department on Friday after deciding to focus exclusively on stop-motion features.

The studio’s first film, the stop-motion pic Coraline, earned $120.2 million at the worldwide box office.

Laika had originally planned to develop both stop-motion and computer-animated films, but will now only use computer animation on a limited basis, to augment stop-motion.

The layoff reduces Laika’s work force from 243 to 180. In December, the company laid off 65 after scrapping a computer-generated feature called Jack and Ben’s Animated Adventure.

Coraline director Henry Selick continues to develop new features for the studio as Laika’s supervising director. The studio is in the final stages of choosing its next project and plans to announce its selection in the next several weeks.



Kid’s Marshmallow Experiment

The marshmallow experiment is a famous test conducted by Walter Mischel at Stanford University. Kids are given a marshmallow and told they can have one now, or if they wait, they will get a second one in a few minutes.


McDonalds Light Coffee

As part of a national campaign promoting McDonald’s restaurants, a downtown Vancouver (BC) lamppost became part of an out-of-home optical illusion, appearing to pour coffee into a giant cup on the sidewalk. At the time, McDonald’s was giving away free small cups of its brew for a two-week period, in an effort to attract new breakfast customers. They developed the concept for a lamppost near 6th Avenue and Cambie Street. The post was wrapped in brown vinyl to resemble poured coffee, while an oversized carafe was attached to the end.


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The 50 Best Things To Eat In The World

From cake, steak and tapas, to oysters, chicken and burgers, here are the 50 best things to eat in the world and the best places to eat them in.


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Free Admission To Many Museums And Parks On September 26th

If you can’t get free admission to a museum, a park, or some sort of walking tour, music performance or a national park on Saturday, Sept. 26, then you’re just not trying. Smithsonian Magazine’s fifth Annual Museum Day and National Public Lands Day both fall on the same day this year, and that means entry fees are waived and special events are planned at museums, cultural attractions, historic sites and parks across the country. So get your weekend chores out the way, jump in the car and take advantage of something free in your town or in the town you’re visiting that weekend. (Read more HERE)


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Oprah’s 2009 Book Club Pick

Ron Charles at the Washington Post says that “Say You’re One of Them” by Uwem Akpan is Oprah’s next Book Club pick. The short story collection is a “powerful and vivid debut collection describing the plight of children caught up in difficult and often harrowing situations throughout the continent of Africa” according to the blurb.



iPhone Credit Card Case

Everyone knows less is more—but less with more, that’s a breakthrough. The iPhone 3G / 3GS I.D. Case from Case Mate ($29.99) is the next wave in convenience for lifestyle engineers. Their stylish new iPhone 3G / 3GS protective case features an ultra slim slot for bare necessities—ID, cash, debit or credit card. For heading into work or out to the club, give your wallet a break. Turns out sometimes, you can take it with you.




Colgate Is A Stick-Ler For Good Oral Hygiene

Colgate normally gives out small product samples at annual events like “Oral Health Month” to remind target consumers, especially kids, to take better care of their teeth after eating sweets. This method does not drive strong results as most consumers tend to forget the message, even if they have collected the samples. Instead of giving away product samples, ice cream and cotton candy were given out. The stick carrying the ice cream and cotton candy carries a hidden message. Once consumers are done the message printed on the tip of the stick shaped like a toothbrush reveals “Don’t Forget” with the Colgate logo. This simple message effectively reminded consumers to brush their teeth.

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Bose SoundDock 10

Fill even the largest room with music from your iPod or iPhone with the Bose SoundDock 10 ($600). Featuring twin “Twidders” to handle the mids and highs, a hefty, rear-firing subwoofer hidden inside the 19-pound enclosure, and a simple, clean design, the SoundDock 10 also sports an interchangeable dock system, letting you switch out the included iPod/iPhone dock for a Bluetooth receiver for complete wireless control over the entertainment. (via Uncrate)



Now Shipping McSweeney’s Issue 32

McSweeney’s # 32 is dedicated to an investigation of the world to come—near-future stories written by the likes of Anthony Doerr, Heidi Julavits, Wells Tower, Chris Adrian, and Salvador Plascencia, each of ‘em unearthing a different corner of life in the year 2024. This issue features paper-over-board printing that wraps around on the end papers and checks in at a whopping 2 lbs!  Order it HERE.



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