Saturday, December 31, 2011

The Soto List: The Top Ten Awesome Things About 2011

So 2011 is about to shut it's door on us and has we move on to the year that'll probably bring the end of the world, I thought this would be a good time to reflect on the year gone by. Sure, why not?

10. I Won My Third LAMMY-If this is the first post you've ever read of mine, The LAMMY's is an award the LAMB (Large Association of Movie Blogs) gives out every year to all it's members. Every year since I been a member I been nominated for "Best Horror/Sci Fi" blog and out of those four years, I won three times. I've been nominated for "Funniest Writer" once or twice but lost to people funnier than me. But this year, I racked up my 3rd win for Best Horror/Sci-Fi and I couldn't have been happier. Next year, I think I'd like to win Best Podcast for The Lair. That'd be awesome! Speaking of The Lair...

9. The Lair of the Unwanted Has Gotten More Awesome By The Episode-I'll be the first to admit the first season of The Lair was shaky at best. The sound was fucking terrible, I have no idea what the fuck I was doing, and I didn't know Nolahn very well so I'm sure the chemistry wasn't there. Now, as it wrapped up Season Two, I think we're firing on all cylinders. Me and Nolahn couldn't be better friends, I figured out how to fix the sound, and I sorta kinda know what I'm doing. And we've had some awesome guests come through. But watch out! Next year, baby!

8. My New Feature-About 10 weeks ago, I started a new feature called "The Netflix Corner" where I spotlight a movie that's on Netflix Instant Watch and then play a game where I give a Netflix-like description about a movie and people have to guess what it is. And in the years past, I've started many reoccurring features that never seem to pan out but this one, man, people took a liking to it. And I'm glad, cause I have fun with it.

7. All The Awesome Stuff I Wrote-This is gonna be the biggest ego-centric entry here. Just a quick look back at some of my favorite posts from the past year.
I reviewed Stacie Ponder's (AKA Final Girl) "Ludlow".
I reviewed "The Bride of Frank" after a friend of my Future Wife's sister kept telling me to.
After a shitty day at work, I watched and reviewed "Cannibal Holocaust".
I wasn't nominated for Most Funniest this year and this was my totally mature response.
31 Things I Learned From Watching Bad Movies
The Troll 2 Drinking Game
I reviewed "Dreamaniac"
Remembrances of Video Stores Gone By
Why We Need Video Stores Again
Me and Nick Jobe wrote an awesome detailed review of "A Serbian Film" for Halloween.
My Shia LaBeouf Post
And finally, my review of "Silent Night, Deadly Night Part 2".

6. I've Met Some New Friends-Thing about naming names is you're most likely bound to forget somebody. I've met a bunch of people this year through podcasts, Twitter, Facebook, and writing for MILF. Oh yeah, speaking of...

5. I Got To Write For Another Website-Earlier this year, Dylan and Kai shocked the blogasphere by announcing they were quitting their perspective blogs, joining forces, and starting a new site together! That ended up being Man, I Love Films. And in the days before they launched, they came up to me and said "We need someone to write awesome horror movie reviews" and when the person they had in mind couldn't do it, they asked if I could do it instead. I jumped in with both feet and I've been grateful ever since. I'm still nervous that I'm gonna fuck something up but it's been a lot of fun. Plus I get to write about GOOD horror movies from time to time. Oh and, uh, you should probably check out the other stuff posted at MILF. I guess.

4. All The Awesome Movies I Watched This Year-Whenever you get to review some of the worst movies that's ever existed, you tend to come across some...less than stellar films. But often among the turds, you'll find a shining diamond. For example, this year I got to watch a movie called "Truth or Dare? A Critical Madness" with some friends and it was seriously the best experience ever. Then I got to introduce "The Room" to someone and it was just great seeing her reaction to it and now she's obsessed with it. I'll say my work here is done.

3. This Awesome Comment Adam Left-As linked aboved, I wrote a post about how I could've prevented Shia LaBeouf from ever happening and about my journey into Project Greenlight. Adam, who sometimes write reviews here, left this awesome comment and I'm gonna post the whole thing here now:
Ugh. I remember Project Greenlight. I had 2 friends; one who swore that he was the next big Hollywood director and another who thought he was a brilliant writer. They wrote a script, which I won't write the title of here because these fuckers probably still google it once a week because they thought it was sooooo awesome they wouldn't shut up about it for 5 years after it was over. For all I know, they're still trying to secure funding for this shit.
Before they submitted their script, they had me read it and give them feedback. My payment for this service was a pack of cigarettes.
Anyway, their script was a ridiculously pretentious vampire "art" movie that had no action, was impossible to follow, and seemed to focus on some asshole vampire (who was too deep for his own good), brooding over whether or not he should turn a particular child into a vampire while sitting on freeway overpasses being sullen. His mother and girlfriend were also vampires and his mother told long, boring stories in a 24 hour coffee shop (this monstrosity was actually written at The Steer) that were supposed to be profound but were just painful to read. (Keep in mind that these assholes began writing this in the late 90's, when an idea this stupid wasn't actually too far off from the shitty vampire movies of our late high school years).

All I know is when I told them the dialogue sucked and that their was no action and nothing at all to draw anybody into the movie, they, of course, told me I just didn't understand their creative genius.
My favorite part of their criticism of my criticism was when the "director" told me that I just didn't understand film noir. Perplexed, I asked if this was some sort of stylized crime drama set in the 40's or 50's, or maybe supposed to be in that style and I just wasn't reading that in their script. He looked at me like I was retarded and said no. He had no idea what film noir was! Not that I have a firm background in it to this day, but you shouldn't throw around names of sub-genres if you are just guessing what they mean by taking French for a semester freshman year. (BTW, this asshole once put you in a lead role in a high school play).
Anyway, from what I remember, they both read the other scripts and gave them low ratings even though there was some supposedly awesome zombie comedy in there that blew their fucking minds. They didn't want to give it a high grade because they didn't want the competition. As you can imagine, their FUCKING AWFUL script got shitty reviews. But, obviously, the people reading it didn't know a thing about film noir.
Then I said it sounded worse than "Twilight" and he responded back with:
From what I can tell, the main difference between Twilight and their vampire movie is that Twilight has a plot and characters. It might be a shitty story with terrible characters, but still. Their movie had virtually no plot. I don't even think the characters had names; like the main guy was VAMPIRE and his mom was MOTHER and the child was THE CHILD. And seriously, virtually nothing happened. I can't stress this point enough. No vampire attacks. No group of intrepid teens hunting the vampires. All the conflict was internal and it wasn't resolved. It was just the main character sitting alone and being morose about his sad existence of sitting alone and being morose. I cannot stress how much I hated this "story."
2. The Awesome Episode of The LAMBcast I Hosted-Also known as "THE BEST EPISODE OF THE LAMBCAST EVER!!" Sometime in August, Dylan said he was too sick or tired or something to host a couple of episodes so I stepped in to host one episode and I decided to do a favorite of mine: Roll Your Own Top 5! And I took this opportunity to bring in Nolahn for this first ever LAMBcast experience. Add James, Tom Clift, and that Sam guy who'll never read this and you have yourself an awesome episode. Seriously, check it out here!

1. All My Readers-Sometimes it feels like I'm not super popular or get a lot of hits. I don't get much feedback and sometimes when I put a poll up, I have to beg people to participate in it. But in the long run, I am grateful to you guys who do take the time out to read it and I should be lucky to even have one person reading all this shit I write. So to you guys, I say thank you very much and of course Happy New Year!


SJHoneywell said...

"and that Sam guy who'll never read this"

This is my favorite fucking comment of the entire fucking year.

Dave Enkosky said...

I just discovered your site. I love the writing style. You'd get my vote for one of the funniest writers. If only my opinion counted for something.

Nolahn said...

That's a whole lot of awesome. Happy New Year!

Dylan said...

What Steve said. Good god, that was funny.

Perhaps I should do a poll on the Best LAMBcast keep fighting hard for that one (thanks, I wasn't on it, jerk store!), but many others think the Woody Allen one was best (which I'm totally sure you have in 2nd place). :D

Thrilled to have ya at MILF, even if I'll never see 90% of the flicks you write about.

And yes, the Lair keeps getting better. Though I miss the homemade trailers and commercials. Y'all gotta start doing those again (or more).