Media, Technology, and Education
Movie/TV Review

May Movies

I have to be better about posting my movie “reviews” more quickly. I get overwhelmed thinking that I need to write something about the movie when really the whole point of me doing these reviews is just to record what movies I’ve seen. So this month, I’m writing very little about each of these viewings.

Avengers: End Game ☆☆☆

I enjoyed this movie. But…I fell asleep. I can count on one hand the number of times I have fallen asleep during a movie. Despite napping for something like 20 minutes, I didn’t lose any thread of the narrative–and I think that tells you something too. Like I said, I enjoyed the movie. There were so many interesting characters. So. Many. Characters. But not enough of the ones I really like. My main criticism of the plot is that Captain Marvel could just have taken care of everything but she was “busy on other planets.” Ok.

At the Concord Regal with Ann and Pat.

Tolkien ☆☆☆☆

I enjoyed this much more than I expected to.

At Red River with Ann, Pat, and Al.

Hail Satan ☆☆☆☆☆

Such a fun and funny but important documentary about the First Amendment.

At Red River with Ann, Pat, and Al.

Wine Country ☆☆

I heard Amy Poehler talking about this movie on NPR after I watched it and her ideas about what the movie could be were so much more interesting than what the movie actually was. Too bad because I was primed to love this one.

On Netflix at home.

Booksmart ☆☆☆☆

There was a lot of dumb stuff in this teen comedy. But there was so much more smart.

At the Concord Regal with Ann, Pat, and Al.

Article written by:

I am currently Professor of Digital Media at Plymouth State University in Plymouth, NH. I am also the current Coordinator of General Education at the University. I am interested in game studies, digital literacies, open pedagogies, and generally how technology impacts our culture.

2 Comments

  1. Chris Aldrich

    Read May Movies by Cathie LeBlanc (Desert of My Real Life)

    I have to be better about posting my movie “reviews” more quickly. I get overwhelmed thinking that I need to write something about the movie when really the whole point of me doing these reviews is just to record what movies I’ve seen. So this month, I’m writing very little about each of these viewings.

  2. Chris Aldrich

    I was reading about how Cathie LeBlanc sometimes felt overwhelmed about logging the movies she’d recently seen:

    I have to be better about posting my movie “reviews” more quickly. I get overwhelmed thinking that I need to write something about the movie when really the whole point of me doing these reviews is just to record what movies I’ve seen. So this month, I’m writing very little about each of these viewings.

    I always had this problem too and finding quick and easy ways of posting them before I forgot became part of the solution. I’m not sure I’ve fully documented what I’ve been doing, but it’s slowly changed over time, so I thought I’d take a moment to write down some of the faster methods I use or have used.
    One can always use the WordPress mobile posting app, bookmarklets in conjunction with Post Kinds, or even posting via email, but it usually takes a few minutes and can distract from conversations and family/friends when they’re around. Generally I’m looking to immediately capture the title of the film/tv show, the date/time stamp, and maybe the location. Later on, when I’ve got a few extra minutes, I’ll come back and optionally add details/context like poster art, cast, crew, etc. and a mini review with a rating. The method you use will depend on what kind of display you want and how much detail you’d like. At the end of the day, do what works best for you.
    Checkin Method
    I’m a relatively avid user of the Swarm app (fka Foursquare), so I’ll often take a photo of the movie poster, ticket, theater/other while I’m at the theater and then quickly checkin on my phone. Swarm typically has some interface to indicate which movie I’m seeing when I check into movie theaters. Otherwise it’s pretty easy to manually type things in while I’m waiting for the show to start. Once the movie is over I can discretely can go back to the checkin and add a few quick comments and a rating without disturbing the rest of the party, otherwise I’ll revisit it later.
    To get this all on my website I’ve set up the Micropub plugin and configured OwnYourSwarm (for public/private posting–you choose), and the service takes care of posting all the data for me as a checkin so that I don’t forget. In the end it’s usually less than 10 seconds, and I’ve got the data I need as it happens.
    Traditional PESOS watch method using IFTTT
    This alternate PESOS method can be done using popular services like IMDb.com or Letterboxd.com and relies on using RSS feeds from them to pipe content to my site using IFTTT.com. (Other silo services may be able to do this as well.) Most often I send the URLs of movies/tv shows of what I watch from IMDb to my Reading.am account which has an RSS feed to trigger IFTTT.com that, in turn, creates a draft post on my website. (If only IMDB.com had a usable RSS feed, I could skip the Reading.am account. Typically I’ll search for the movie on IMDb, share that from my browser to may email client and email it to a custom Reading.am email address that autoposts it to my Reading.am account.) Later I can peek in on it, add a mini-review and rating if I like, and publish publicly or not. Letterboxd can be used similarly, but it has the added benefit of having a rating system built in so it can send that data as well.
    Hopefully they’ll resolve with a logged in account, so here are the two IFTTT.com recipes I’m using as reference:

    IMDb/Reading.am: https://ifttt.com/applets/100364186d-reading-am-feed-creates-wordpress-watch-draft

    Letterboxd: https://ifttt.com/applets/71675589d-letterboxd-syndication-to-wordpress-as-watches

    (If you can’t access the recipes to recreate your own, let me know, and I’ll manually delineate all the relevant settings.)
    Both methods will work without it, but I’m also using the Post Kinds plugin to create explicit watch posts which have a nice contextual presentation which I kind of like. It also has the ability to parse URLs to create the context quickly, so if you put in an IMDb or Letterboxd URL, it will fetch artwork, cast, description, etc. automatically and there’s no need to cut/paste.
    Examples
    To get some idea, here are some interesting examples of these methods.

    Main watch feed: https://boffosocko.com/kind/watch/

    Checkin: https://boffosocko.com/2017/07/23/checkin-at-pacific-theatres-glendale-18/

    IMDb/Reading.am: https://boffosocko.com/2019/03/23/captain-marvel-2019-walt-disney-pictures/

    Letterboxd: https://boffosocko.com/2019/03/02/studio-54-2018-zeitgeist-films-%E2%98%85%E2%98%85%E2%98%85%E2%98%85/

    If others have better/faster methods, I’d love to hear them or see them documented. Perhaps one day someone (or maybe even IMDb or Letterboxd) will build a custom Micropub client specifically for watch posts (something akin to Teacup for food/drink or Indiebookclub for reading) that will automatically poll the data related to a film/television title and post it to one’s site?

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