Audiobooks without DRM

Surprise!

“Our feeling is that D.R.M. is not actually doing anything to prevent piracy,” said Ms. McIntosh of Random House Audio. [From Publishers Phase Out Piracy Protection on Audio Books – New York Times]

What’s funny about the music industry and now the publishing industry taking these steps away from DRM is that this has all been done before! You don’t need to look any further than what happened with copy protected software… and things that you really want to take with you (like music, audiobooks and now movies) are even more likely to suffer from the problems people disliked about copy protected software.

Music, now audiobooks and even many ebooks are going DRM-free. How long will it take for movies to do the same?

Studio adds a line to a movie for the fans

In shooting additional footage for “Snakes on a Plane”. New Line has added in a line that was demanded by fans. Strangely, they were shooting additional footage to ensure that the movie goes from PG-13 to R. Though it’s not the kind of movie I’m generally inclined to see, I gotta say that sticking with the “Snakes on a Plane” title was a great move. You just know exactly what you’re going to get. (Hmm… Star Wars Episode II: Wooden Actors, Bad Script, But Yoda Kicks Butt)

Obligatory Star Wars Revenge of the Sith review

Today, the boss let me sneak out and see Star Wars, Episode III: Revenge of the Sith. I saw a 1:30PM show and it was busy, but certainly not crazy. There were a couple people with lightsabers and robes, but that was about as nuts as it gets on a Thursday afternoon in Michigan.

Short form review: I thought the movie was excellent. Yes, Lucas is not a good writer and, yes, the acting can be a bit stiff at times. But, the story of how Anakin becomes Vader was much more credible than I expected. The movie was plotted, paced and shot very well. All-in-all, Episode III did deliver on all of that exposition from the first two movies and makes Star Wars a fairly seamless 6 parter.

Spoiler that you don’t care about alert.

Jar Jar Binks does not die in this movie. Though he’s basically one of the good guys (despite the fact that he basically created the Empire in Episode II when he moved to grant special powers to Palpatine), he’s not a Jedi and so he survives. Alas, you can’t have everything.

Brief movie review: Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy

I’ve read the Hitchhiker’s Guide books at least a couple of times. Consequently, I didn’t like some of the script choices that they made when they moved the story to film. They excised a number of the funniest bits in exchange for some added visual bits that were not particularly entertaining or important to the story.

I did like the visuals, and I think the movie may have played better to people who weren’t as familiar with the Guide. (This notion was somewhat supported by one of my friends who saw it with me and was less familiar with the books.)

For my part, though, I give it a 5 out of 10. It’s mildly entertaining, but a far cry from what it could have been.

Halle Berry wins worst actress award and shows up to accept it!

It sounds like the Razzies had a great year! George W. Bush won the worst actor razzie for his performance as President in Farenheit 911. Halle Berry won worst actress for Catwoman, but she actually showed up to accept! She had her Oscar in hand and said how she went from the top of her profession to the bottom.

“I want to thank Warner Brothers for casting me in this piece of shit,” she said as she dragged her agent on stage and warned him “next time read the script first.”

What a great sense of style!