Clash of the Titans is not epic enough
Apr02

Clash of the Titans is not epic enough

Even with 3-D effects, Sam Worthington is still one dimensional. Clash of the Titans delivers dramatic action sequences and crisp effects, but leaves viewers unsatisfied with shallow writing and characters. The basic concept of this remake of the 1981 film is that mankind is tired of the gods. They decide the best course of action is to rebel against Olympus. The protagonist Perseus, played by Sam Worthington, is a demigod and has all the gifts needed to save humanity but wants to avoid his half-god roots. It follows the basic structure of all epics with a strange birth, tragedy, quest, obstacles and a great foe. Unfortunately for movie goers, anything they read in middle school about Greek mythology was more compelling than this story. Liam Neeson plays a strong, loving and sleazy Zeus. His portrayal is really fun to watch. The rest of the characters are better than the boring Perseus, but not awe inspiring. Titans opens very much like the Disney film Hercules except the cartoon handled explaining the background of Greek mythology much better. In fact, the first 30 minutes of the film stumbles as it tries to set up the epic quest and action sequences. The dialogue is bad and Perseus is totally inconsistent. Luckily, however, soon everyone shuts up and fights monsters, and that’s really what this movie is all about. The battles are fantastic. The mythological creatures are realistic yet still feel like special effects. Anyone who has any attachment to Greek mythology will enjoy watching these beautiful and terrifying creatures attack the men. The over-hyped Kraken is the least exciting of all the creatures in film, which makes the climax fall flat. In the end, Titans leaves you wishing you saw more. The beauty and effects could have been complemented so well with just a little more care in the story telling. You never really care much about Perseus and that’s what makes this movie just another soon-to-be-forgotten action romp. View the trailer...

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New baseball season, same problems
Mar30

New baseball season, same problems

As the 2010 Major League Baseball season approaches, many teams are spending their spring in Florida, preparing for the upcoming grind of 162 regular season games. Baseball is a sport of exactness and refined skill. Only the greatest combination of talent and practice can produce a winning baseball team. That, and cash. The Yankees welcomed the Houston Astros on a brisk evening at George M. Stienbrennar field. White lattice mimicking the Bronx home of the bombers girdles the iron grandstand that seats 16,000 spectators in Tampa. On a practice field, Yankee pitchers Andy Petite and Joba Chamberlain threw batting practice to several youngsters. A security guard commented that anyone could schedule a party and play with some Yankees. Last week, a bar mitzvah was held for the mere price of $90,000. But what else could be expected from a team whose 3rd baseman, Alex Rodriguez, will make $31 million this year alone. Just an hour away, in Bradenton, Fla., The Pittsburgh Pirates are getting ready for their morning game with the Detroit Tigers. These Pirates will be paying their major league players about $36 million this year. That’s $4 million more than just one Yankee. With such a huge gap between payrolls, is it any surprise that the Pirates’ field, McKechnie, only holds about 6,000. Or that the Yankees are coming off of a World Series championship and the Pirates are coming off a sporting record of 17 consecutive losing seasons. This doesn’t mean that the Pirates are hopeless. Outfielders Andrew McCutchen and Garret Jones are coming off sensational rookie seasons, and third base prospect Pedro Alvarez is projected to crack the major league lineup soon, but the Pirates roster doesn’t invoke the kind of fear that the all star filled Yankees scorecard does. It doesn’t even compare to Pirates lineups of days past, when Clemente and Stargell were household names. Money doesn’t always equal success. The Mets have been terrible despite their huge salaries. The Tampa Bay Rays won the World Series with one of the lowest payrolls in baseball, but no one can argue that money helps. In the NFL, NHA and NBA all teams are subject to a salary cap. In baseball, teams pay what they want. The Pirates claim to be waiting till their young players develop enough to compete and then will spend to add complementing players. Pirates owner Bob Nutting told me that team really seems to be coming together, and I agree. Baseball may be getting exciting in Pittsburgh again, but it has taken a complete purge in talent in the recent years to acquire prospects. This is the correct approach for...

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Beach family of 15 gets new start after Hurricane Ike
Mar10

Beach family of 15 gets new start after Hurricane Ike

When Hurricane Ike struck in 2008, the Beach family did not anticipate that it would take two years, and the help of the ABC TV show Extreme Makeover: Home Edition, for their family of 15 to have a house again. Junior business major Michael Beach is one of the four biological children of Melissa and Larry Beach. They also have nine adopted children. Since the hurricane destroyed their home in Kemah, Texas, they have been trying to get by in two FEMA trailers and then a travel trailer. ABC has provided them with the living space they so desperately needed. “They move the bus, and I’m totally blown away,” Michael said. “I now knew that my parents were going to be OK. My little brothers and sisters will be able to grow up and have something they didn’t have before.” The Beach family felt God calling them to adoption and fostering. “My parents … since I was in fi rst grade, fostered 85 kids,” Michael said. “They started being drawn to medically fragile babies and kids that once they leave the system, what do they have left?” The adopted children range from 2 to 18 years old. One toddler is both deaf and blind. Another child requires 24-hour oxygen. Many asked why the family would take in children whom many consider unadoptable. “I want him. He’s a baby. He’s God’s. He is perfect for God’s purpose,” Melissa said in a recorded interview for House of Faith, a Web site supporting the family. “If his purpose is just to smile, then that is his purpose.” Recording artist and worship leader Robbie Seay nominated the Beach family for the show. The parents were his high school Sunday school teachers, and he has always supported the family who has influenced him. “They never lived life about themselves,” Seay said. “They are who they are despite the show and their house. They have always been about loving, giving and serving.” When host Ty Pennington first arrived with his crew at the Beach home, the family was ecstatic. “On Jan. 7 we got a knock. You’re so shocked to hear a voice from someone on TV,” Michael Beach said. “The front yard was filled with community members who came to support and help with the project.” The family was sent to Disney World while the construction took place. Several university staff and students went to the unveiling to join a 4,000 member crowd. Senior art major Lauren Allen was among them. “The Beach family is so well loved in that community,” she said. “It was an awesome experience to see someone who has given...

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Fort Hood shooter may be detained in Belton

According to several news sources, accused Fort Hood shooter Maj. Nidal Hasan will be housed in the new Belton County jail, just miles from UMHB. Hasan has been in a military hospital in San Antonio since the Nov. 5 shootings. The Bell County Sherriff’s office says the move is not a done deal but, “If and when an agreement is made to accept Hasan, his transfer date and time will not be announced in advance.” Why Belton? Fort Hood has sent prisoners here for years because the base does not have adequate facilities. Students do not need to feel alarmed by Hasan’s closeness. The Bell County jail is only a year old, away from town, and up to state standards. Hasan will be held in a medical unit where he can be treated. It should be an honor that the government feels comfortable housing him there. Millions of dollars went to the construction for the very purpose of taking care of criminals. He should be here. Belton is home to his lawyer, and near Fort Hood. It is also near where the hearing will be. He is a paralyzed man. Security around Hasan has been airtight since the attack. Even the general statements by the sheriff point to continued safety and protection of the situation. What is there to fear? Belton lawyer John Galligan represents Hasan. He argues that Belton is ill-equipped to treat his client who is paralyzed. On his blog he states that one of his former clients was not properly taken care of during her time there. His out-spoken blog is grasping for sympathy for his client in a community that is already hostile toward Hasan. Still Galligan demands fair and right treatment and process, exactly what Americans should expect. Hasan’s housing and trial is a major point in the struggle of American justice against terror. Galligan is loudly standing up for his client as the June 1 military hearing approaches. We have seen and heard of the trauma of Guantanamo. Obama’s attempts to close the Cuban base have been fruitless because there is no where else to house terrorists. Hasan is not a foreign born attacker, but his successful holding, hearing and trial could prove that terrorists can face justice within American borders. Hasan is an American still, and it is encouraging that due process is served to him like any other American regardless of his crime. Galligan is fighting tooth and nail for his client. Despite the anger and betrayal people may feel towards someone who perpetrated the largest shooting on an American military base, Hasan is getting his due process. That is what...

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Controversial bill could pass
Feb25

Controversial bill could pass

The job creation bill is getting closer to passing, according to Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) Many Republicans disagree, as they are pulling their support from the supposedly bipartisan bill according to the AP. The bill was scaled back from $85 billion to $15 billion after Democrats complained that it helped large companies too much and the unemployed too little. When so much of the money left, so did many Republicans. Director of Career Services Don Owens has been watching the job market as he prepares students for their futures. While hiring fell greatly last year and has recovered only partially since, Owens says graduates are not in that great of peril. “We are at a 10 percent unemployment rate, which we have not seen in a long time,” he said. “But that higher education gives you a leap pad over everyone else. You’re going to have some advantages, but still it is hard work.” The bill is a top priority for the Obama administration, and its passing is important for Democrats going into the midterm elections. They have already lost the super majority with the addition of Republican Sen. Scott Brown of Massachusetts. Many have felt that the Democratic congress has been unproductive. Others view the Republicans as being uncooperative. Regardless of opinion, unemployment is a problem in America. Senior education major Beth Koinm is moving to Atlanta after graduation and will need a job. “In a way, I’m worried, probably because I’m going to another state,” she said. “There (were) a lot of people that graduated from here that didn’t get jobs so I worry about why would they choose me.” Koinm thinks increased government assistance would be beneficial to her field. “A lot of older teachers who are planning to retire are not retiring because of the economy,” she said. “I think they should push younger people because we know more about technology and education philosophies.” Owens has advice for students as they face the market. “You’ve got to have a good resume and make sure you have good credentials. Especially if you’re a sophomore you need to get into internships and make good grades that set you apart,” he said. “You’re not just competing against your classmates but against a workforce globally.” Freshman computer graphics design major Dillon Mogford thinks technology is the key to his success. “As a graphic design major you learn more than just graphic design. You also learn Web mastering, video stuff and things like that,” he said. “The future seems to be in technology. So with a job that is technology based, I feel rather confident in getting a...

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