F-F-F-Fantasia Film Festival 2018 and its 17 Most Intriguing Titles TGoF Can’t Wait to See!

What’s on tap for today?

Friday July 13, 2018 marks the official kickoff of the Fantasia Film Festival which ends on August 2, 2018. I’ve been fortunate enough to cover the films featured in the Montreal festival for the last four years and like each year before it the titles just keep getting more and more interesting. Last year I was able to take in titles that ended up being some of my favorite genre offerings of the year (Tragedy Girls and Better Watch Out). So before we press start on this year’s insanity, lets take a look at some of the titles I’m most looking forward to (hopefully) deliver some reviews for as the fest gets under way! Why 17? I dunno, cause it’s not the standard 10 and its an odd number which just seemed like the right thing to do. Also, I miscounted when I did all the write-ups (since I lumped 3 into one paragraph) and didn’t feel like taking two of them off the list–sooo yeah.

Anna and the Apocalypse

Say zombies and you have my attention–then hit me with musical and I start to pull back a bit. However, the buzz for this one out of Sundance is hard to ignore. Plus it’s a horror christmas movie which always excites me. So paint me optimistic with a touch a caution as we await to see if this is a cult classic in the making and not just the classic tune of festival hype.





Annihilation And It Feels So Good + Game Night, Toppling Goliath Can Designs & Omaha Film Festival Kickoff Week

What’s on tap for today?

theendless_posterThe flu is the pits. Like anyone in the history of ever has ever really needed to justify that sentence. Yes, the flu and various other illnesses/concerns kept me down and out over the last couple of weeks hindering my ability (eh, at least my desire) to be productive. This in turn has assured that I would fall behind on a couple of movie reviews which got kicked down far enough to combine a number of goings on in the world of this busy dad.

Today’s update will take us through reviews of Alex Garland’s stellar sci-fi drama Annihilation and the surprisingly hilarious thrills of Game Night. After that I’ll dabble into the ever changing landscape of Toppling Goliath Brewing Company’s canned beers–including their badass can designs–before capping the post off to express the excitement behind what will be my first appearance at an Omaha Film Festival event as the fest kicks off this week. Let’s dig in, shall we? (more…)

V-Day Pics and Fifty Shades of Gettin’ Rowdy with Duckman

Note: The new changes are still in the works, while I work on getting them integrated fully below you’ll fine a taste of what I expect to be the norm for posts on this page. A mixture of life updates, movie/tv/beer reviews. 

What’s on tap for today?

DSC_2198Countless other parents before me know the endless barrage of incoherent insanity that comes with the daily life of a two year old. I’m not sure anything prepared me for a photo shoot with TWO two year olds and the resulting absurdism that enfolded. Next, the wife and I took the world’s most annoyingly consumer driven holiday and had ourselves a date night which included some sushi and a trip to the Alamo Drafthouse for a ‘Rowdy Screening’ of Fifty Shades Freed. Lastly, I revisit my childhood to recount a cartoon I’m thinking I didn’t really understand or appreciate for my age at the time…Duckman.

V-Day Pics

It’s been at least a week now since Valentine’s Day came and went stealing depressing amounts of money from the pockets of men and women alike. Forcing ourselves to buy gifts on a designated day that prove to our SOs that we love them–cause, ya know…how else would they know? Anyway, to commemorate the holiday it was decreed that we take girly girl to a studio and get her pictures taken in a super adorable dress that my wife picked out, that was also on sale (score!).  (more…)

[PSA] I Drank Two Hats’ Fruit Flavored Light Beers So You Don’t Have To

In big beer’s latest quest to get an upper hand on the little guys it seems they’ve further widened the gap in understanding what “flavor” in a beer even means. Ever since the snarky super bowl ads a few years back it’s been nauseatingly clear that big beer 1) doesn’t get craft beer and 2) thinks grade school name calling is how you shame us into seeing the error of our ways. Of course, there’s always the very slim chance that their latest venture, fruit flavored light lagers, is simply just a dump pass to the field’s easiest target…newly minted 21-year olds.

MillerCoors’ press release is pretty transparent about their target demo (21 to 24 years olds) and they even go so far as to pander by calling these new trainwrecks more affordable than craft beer–without explicitly using the words craft beer. At $6.99 a pop for a six pack of 16 oz tall boy cans it’s hard to argue in terms of ounces, but I for one will never choose to sacrifice a few ounces here and there for something that’s not offensive to my taste buds.

I’m jumping ahead of myself here. Having not described what exactly we’re dealing with here I’ve gone and spoiled my impressions of a lazy cash crab exploiting a 20-something’s eagerness for an inexpensive buzz. Let’s face it though, I’m not much better since I willingly made a trip to purchase these due to a disease I like to call “morbid curiosity”. Then again, as a consumer that clearly justifies each and every unflattering word that calls this post home–and MillerCoors could just as easily be using my hard earned cash to clean themselves up after their shameful bathroom deeds.

There’s no point in dragging out the explanation of either of these beers. Supposedly “brewed” by Plank Road Brewery these unholy beverages clock in at 4.2% ABV which I’ve appropriate dumped into my party cup pint glass to replicate the full macro beer experience. In all aspects relating to appearance, aroma and taste these are an unremarkable duo all the way around. One dimensional drinking experiences with nothing to offer even the least discerning beer drinkers. The flavors might change but both beers pour crystal clear and golden, which will be a welcome bit of deja vu for the Bud Light purists cracking one of these open following their latest shotgun session. Following suit with every American adjunct you’ve ever regrettably swigged at a sweaty frat house, Super Bowl party, or Applebee’s there’s very little head–and what little there is dissipates rapidly like soda bubbles.

The pineapple and lime flavors are interchangeable, but the drinking experience is the same–with the one exception that the lime is more dominant in terms of flavor. Yet, if you’ve ever had a Bud Light Lime, it’s pretty much the same beer. These are meant to be crushed and not tasted, because if you let them sit long enough the regret you’ll feel trying to finish one off is soul crushing. Essentially, when ice cold the best you get here is pineapple/lime flavored water. There’s nothing in the way of mouthfeel, lingering pleasantries, or evolving flavor profiles. Plus–and this is important–the fruit flavors here are as artificial as it gets…so there’s no admirable craft in how the guns for hire have accomplished their “flavor profiles”.

To go on much further in describing these in detail is fruitless (zing!). Ninety-six ounces of alcoholic flavored water that, with any luck, will never even accidentally find it’s way back into my home or fridge. Wishful thinking for someone who buys 40’s and massive cans of malt liquor to chug as a joke for people coming over for bottle shares.

The only takeaway you need out of this is that you absolutely should not feel compelled to buy this stuff. If you’re a newly legal beer drinker looking for guidance please hear this: you can do better, you deserve better and there are overwhelming amounts of superior choices when it comes to beer. If you find yourself shopping for beer and you say to yourself, “How bad can it really be?” put that beer down immediately. Big beer does not care about quality and they most certainly don’t care about the craft of REAL beer. Big beer is stuck in an outdated state of mind that sees $$$ when they look at their customers and rather than adapt they simply throw their money around, poisoning the perception established once respected brands in an attempt to capitalize on what they feel is a trend. I’m not one to hate, business is business, but this kind of blatant disregard to a consumer’s palate is more than enough to get this craft beer drinker’s blood to boil.

Even if you’re on the fence about drinking craft beer do not let this poor excuse for marketing trick you into thinking you’re better off strapping on training wheels and using these as a stepping stone. Grab a bag of Jolly Ranchers, a case of Bud Light and you’ve got an array of flavored beer that mimics whatever is going on here and it kills me to even put that idea out into the world.


[Opinion] Recasting The Losers Club for IT Chapter Two

One of the strongest aspects of this year’s IT was its youthful cast. So with the closure of Chapter One, one of the biggest questions for fans was, “Who’s gonna play who in the sequel?” As you may or may not know, Pennywise is an ancient evil that emerges for a period of time every 27 years to feed in the children of Derry.

Spoilers follow, so if you’re not wanting to be spoiled about the ending of IT or the surviving characters then you’d best turn away NOW. At the end of IT the Losers are able to successfully defeat Pennywise and force him into his 27 year slumber without feasting on a member of their club. To celebrate, the group makes a blood pact to return to Derry to fight Pennywise should It ever return to wreak havoc on the town again.  (more…)

[Opinion] 2017 Summer Movie Predictions

You have in front of you the only summer movie prediction post guaranteed to get it all wrong. I’m not a Hollywood analyst out there tracking the interest of movie releases, nor am I an avid follower of the people that actually do that sort of thing. I’m just a dude who writes about beer and movie for fun that likes to swing wildly timely trends from time to time.

Today, it’s ranking this summer’s (2017 for all you futuristic hobos slummin it on the net) movie releases in order of how well I think they’ll do at the box office–just the top ten though. If you read last year’s you already know how comically misinformed this is about it get. Now that we know the game though, let’s just get this over with so I can get back to my case of beer, shall we?

(1) Spider-Man: Homecoming – With a trio of superhero tinged releases to pick from I am hedging my bets that people losing their sh*t at Spidey’s appearance in Civil War translates to big bucks this year. Or by the end of summer I’ll just go along ignoring how painfully wrong I always am and that’s why I don’t get paid the big bucks. (more…)

[Opinion] What’s So Great About ‘Shower Beer’

showerbeer_championbrewing_tgofshowerbeer_championbrewing_tgofShower beer. For some, that is a new and confusing term. Other’s its a relaxing escape from the stresses of everyday life. Ladies, you know how blissful it is to run a nice hot bath and sit back with some candles, maybe a nice glass of wine and just shut yourself off from the world. Shower beer, while arguably not as peaceful, rivals the other’s potential as a perfect way to unwind after a long hard day of adulting.

To clarify, neither activity is gender specific. Men and women alike can choose whatever path floats their boat. The question is–what is it about drinking a beer in the shower that makes it so damned satisfying? Then again, maybe you’ve done it and don’t see the appeal. Both sides can coexist believe it or not and whether you’re pro shower beer or have no idea what the draw is, neither of you are wrong.

On the pro side, surface level, there’s something freeing about being soapy and naked while drinking a beer without judgements–except your own if you catch a glimpse of your reflection in shiny silver shower knob. I’d have to have a whole lot more scientific experience in my background to give you any hard facts about whether or not it has any healing properties or other positive effects for the skin. From my perspective, it’s biggest draw is psychological at best and even that might be a stretch. (more…)

[Opinion] Your Untappd ‘Distinct Beers’ Milestone and What it Says About You

img_2406No, I’m not just channeling my inner Cosmo writer with that title, but I suppose the change of pace does warrant a little bit of explanation. Here at TGoF the goal has never been to just get on and babble incoherently about beer and movies. Okay, so it actually did start that way, because I never had any illusions that I would have the inspiration to do anything but get on and babble incoherently about beer and movies.

When 2016 came to a close, I felt it was now or never to at least try and change things up a bit going into 2017. Step one is to branch off a bit into some other opinionated posts related to my bread and butter–beer and movies. I haven’t planned much outside of step one, so we’ll cross that bridge when we get there. So, every now and then when inspiration strikes you’ll hopefully see some “new” and “different” content filling the space on my little blog and with any luck, anyone who stumbles across it will enjoy. Welcome to TGoF in 2017…now lets get started! (more…)

[Best of 2016] TGoF’s Picks for the Best Movies of 2016

It was a fairly quiet year of moviegoing here at TGoF. Lots of adjusting to life with a baby along with other typical life happenings that eat into one’s time and energy. The result made it difficult to fit in some of what many would consider the best movies of the year and being a genre lover I always make time for those pesky horror movies–which is why my lists tend to befuddle the more refined movie snobs. However, in review of the movies I saw this year and not being satisfied with the options for a top ten the executive decision was made to this year do a top five instead. Condensing down hopefully just accentuates how great I felt the top choices were as opposed to how weak (yet still highly rated) my overall top ten would have been.

Over the course of the next few weeks it’s possible I’ll make it out to cinema darlings like La La Land and and Moonlight, but for now hopefully you’re eyes will find my choices for what I did see in 2016 acceptable enough. As always thanks for checking out my ramblings and I look forward to getting back in the saddle more and more on 2017! (more…)

2016 Great Nebraska Beerfest Preview

img_0978One of Nebraska’s largest craft beer festivals returns and for the 3rd year in a row Werner Park plays host. Having attended the fest for the past four years, I have to say the ballpark is perfect for outdoor beer sampling and having a baseball field as the backdrop makes this particular beer and baseball fanatic very happy. The venue offers plenty of shade and a comfortable breeze often flows through the concourse.

This year’s festival sees the return of many local and regional favorites bringing their beer for fans to enjoy as well as a slew of new breweries. Recent events certainly cast a shadow for some as the Nebraska Liquor Control Commission stepped in and blocked homebrewers and non-licensed breweries in planning from participating and pouring their beer for thirsty patrons. Upcoming breweries like Marto, Code Beer Co, Jukes Ale Works, Get Lost, Kros Strain, and Vis Major are among the previously announced participants that will now be absent when the doors open at 12:30pm for the VIP session and 2pm for general admission ticket holders. (more…)