Go Bengals

Here at RunPee headquarters – a hidden location in the Arizona desert – we are all pulling for the Cincinnati Bengals in the NFL playoffs.Ochocinco iPhone app That’s because Jordan Palmer is one of the partners at RockSoftware – the company that developed the iPhone app.

RockSoftware also developed the official iPhone app for Chad Ochocinco and is working on apps for Terrell Owens, Jared Allen, and appropriately The Rock.

So GO BENGALS!!! – unless you make it to the Superbowl and play against the Cowboys.

Movie review : The Imaginarium of Doctor Parnassus

Imaginarium of Dr. Parnassus
Imaginarium of Dr. Parnassus

Buy the soundtrack for Imaginarium of Dr. Parnassus

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You’ll certainly enjoy this movie if you’re a fan of Terry Gilliam’s visual style – which I am. I’m pretty sure this is Gilliam’s first major foray into CGI which is worth seeing regardless of the storyline. Even though there aren’t too many scenes that involve CGI. We do get plenty of Gilliam’s dirty, cluttered environments that are his signature.

The main plot in this movie is what happened during the filming. Heath Ledger passed away during principle filming leaving many scenes unfinished. Fortunately Gilliam found a very creative way to finish telling the story without Ledger by using three substitutes – Johnny Depp, Jude Law and Colin Farrell – who all in many ways play homage to Ledger. It seems that the only scenes left to film were those that took place inside the Imaginarium. Since Ledger’s character enters three different times they use a different substitute in each scene. And it works out fine.

What I don’t know is what scenes are missing from outside the Imaginarium. It certainly seems like there are at least a few missing scenes because the story doesn’t quite make sense. After watching the movie I’m left wondering why Ledger’s character is even in the film. I’m not sure if I’m missing something or if the film is missing something. Probably a combination of the two.

Wired Magazine has an interview with Terry Gilliam that is worth reading if you’re still on the fence about seeing the movie.

What did you think about Imaginarium of Dr. Parnassus? Share your thoughts about the movie in the comments below.

Movie review : It’s Complicated

It’s Complicated
It's Complicated
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This is easily the funniest movie of the year. If you exclude The Hangover from the list then It’s Complicated is funnier than all the other comedies that came out in 2009 combined. It’s that funny. The middle third of the movie was almost non-stop laughing. Sometimes it was even a raucous laughter.

I felt that the cast worked very well together. Meryl Streep, Alec Baldwin and Steve Martin make up an almost unbeatable trio. They played very well together and seemed to have great chemistry. Many people feel that Streep will get an Oscar nod for her work here. I feel that Alec Baldwin is just as deserving.

And don’t forget that John Krasinski – Harley the son-in-law – is in here. He provided his fair share of laughs despite limited screen time. No question that he did a lot with a little.

Nancy Meyers – writer/director – deserves 10-fold more kudos than all the actors are getting. She provided the cast with a great vehicle and gave them excellent directions. For all the crap that Hollywood produces it’s refreshing to be reminded that there are talented people there who can entertain us with a funny and real life story.

What did you think about It’s Complicated? Share your thoughts about the movie in the comments below.

RunPee.com website upgraded for multilingual and regional use

Revamped RunPee.com to display Peetimes for movies in 21 languages

Subject of press release: Major upgrade to the bladder-relieving movie website RunPee.com, adding support for many different languages and regions with exciting new design and visuals.

Concept and website
Contact: Dan Florio
Company: RunPee.com
Address: Los Angeles, California
Phone: 330-353-9338
Email: polyGeek@RunPee.com
Mobile Application Development: RockSoftware.com
URL: http://blog.runpee.com/news [links for the phenomenal media coverage on RunPee.com]

Los Angeles, California – RunPee.com, the next best thing to a pause button at the movies, was until now all in English. But RunPee fans are spread across the globe. An update to the website offers users the ability to quickly switch between languages and independently switch the region that they are in so that they may see movie listings for their location.

The RunPee Mobile Upgrade Includes:

  • Currently the ability to display Peetimes and synopsis in Spanish, French, German and English. Soon there will be support for many other languages: Arabic, Chinese, Czech, Danish, Dutch, Finnish, Greek, Hindi, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Norwegian, Polish, Portuguese, Russian, Swedish, and Indonesian
  • Currently showing options to view movies as they are released in Australia, Brazil, Canada, France, Germany, Russia, United Kingdom, United States. Soon the region list will include China, New Zealand, South Africa, Netherlands, Czech Republic, Argentina, Spain, Japan, Sweden, Greece, Italy, Belgium, Romania, Finland, Israel, United Arab Emirates, Egypt, Switzerland, Austria, Hong Kong, Malaysia, Mexico.

A Basic Mobile Version

Because RunPee.com is built with Adobe Flash many people with mobile phones cannot visit the site. Therefore a simple mobile version of the site was created at: m.RunPee.com. It displays all the same data – only in English for now. Movies that have been in the theater for more than 31 days are free to view. To view movies as they are released is a $1/year registration.

Screen shots are free to use.

Peetimes in English.
Peetimes in English

Peetimes in Spanish
Peetimes in Spanish

Peetimes in German
Peetimes in German

Peetimes in French
Peetimes in French

RunPee logo

RunPee logo

RunPee logo

RunPee logo

RunPee.com : coming soon to a phone near you

By far the most requested feature I get is, “When will there be a RunPee app for my ???? phone?” Currently there are only apps for iPhone and Android phones. There is also m.RunPee.com which is a very simple HTML version of the website that should work on practically any mobile browser. It costs $1/year to get access to movies that have been out for less than 31 days. Everything else is free.

But that’s going to change soon. As you know the RunPee.com website is done in Flash. ( To be precise it’s done with the Flex framework 4.0 beta 2 and Flash Builder beta 2.) The reason it’s done in Flash is that I’m a Flash developer and that’s what I do. There are no plans to ever make RunPee.com an HTML based website.

The good news is that Flash is coming to your mobile phone. Yes, you Blackberry, Palm Pre, Nokia, etc. users will soon have phones that will display Flash content. That’s because Adobe is working very hard to make the next version of the Flash Player work across devices. Currently the Flash Player uses up too many resources for a mobile phone to handle. But the new player will be optimized for mobile phones. My understanding is that when the player is ready – sometime in the first half of 2010 – then it will be pushed out to existing phones. For some I’m sure you will have to download it. Others will just magically have the Flash player.

That will help a great deal but the current RunPee.com website still wouldn’t work very well on a mobile phone. That’s because the app is far too wide to fit on a mobile phone screen. But I promise not to leave you hanging. I’m going to make a version of the app that will fit nicely on smaller screens. When you visit RunPee.com the app will check to see what your screen size is and then display the appropriate layout.

The mobile version of the site will have all the features that you would expect of a mobile app. It will store data locally in case you need to use the app in a theater without reception – provided you viewed the Peetimes before losing reception. It will also have a Timer and will vibrate your phone before each Peetime – provided your phone supports that functionality.

The big question will be about the price. Initially it will be free and I hope to keep it that way if the advertising makes enough money. If not then I will probably use something similar to the m.RunPee.com model and charge people $1/year to access movies that have been out for less than 31 days.

I’m on the list at Adobe to get access to all of the beta-bits necessary to create the mobile version before it’s released to the public. I’m certain that I will have the mobile version of RunPee ready the day the updated Flash Player is released to the public. Hopefully in time for the summer blockbusters.

Movie review : Avatar

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[ No Spoilers ]

As soon as this movie was over I knew that it was in my top 10 all time favorites. After some careful consideration I’d put it in the top 3 – with Return of the King and The Matrix.

A word about 3D
I get motion sick fairly easy. So I was a bit apprehensive going in to see this in 3D. I usually avoid 3D screens, and on the occasions that I have experienced them it was bad. Usually 3D movies show a few scenes here and there in 3D, but the majority of the time you’re wearing those funky glasses for nothing.

Well that’s not the case here. Cameron waited 10 years to make this movie because he wanted to do it right – which means he wanted to do it his way. The movie is 3D from beginning to end. And not just that, but it’s good 3D. Cameron doesn’t go for cheap gimmicks by randomly throwing things at the audience. Oh, sure there are a few, very few, times that something might make you flinch, but for the most part the 3D experience just brings you deeper into the scene.

And I completely forgot that I was wearing the glasses and watching a 3D movie after about the first 30 minutes. The movie is that good. So see it in 3D or don’t even bother seeing it.

Stunningly beautiful
I’m going to go out on a limb and say that there has never been a more beautiful movie ever made. Pandora is breathtaking. You get that from the previews but you see so much more in the movie.

Pacing and story
Cameron is a master at pacing. No, he is the master at pacing. You’ll get pulled into the story and forget that you’re sitting in a movie theater even though the movie is 2 hours and 40 minutes long. The movie seamlessly switches back and forth between the avatar and non-avatar world. You’re never in a scene too long that it begins to drag. The action scenes are just long enough. Cameron never interjects additional action just to show off. He’s here to tell a story that he has worked and re-worked for years. That makes it tight.

Nothing more to say than it was perfect.

Bottom line
Cameron has secured himself in the director pantheon. In my opinion, he and Spielberg sit alone at the pinnacle of Mt. Director. Cameron put everything on the line and risked a great deal of money and his reputation. Both are going to get a huge boost from Avatar.

Oh, and Mr. George Lucas: You need to attend any workshops on directing that Cameron might offer. You could learn a thing or two from this man.

What did you think about Avatar? Share your thoughts about the movie in the comments below.

Would you like to be a volunteer translator for RunPee?

The new RunPee.com is almost ready. The big upgrade to the new design is that it will support multiple languages. There are two main parts that need to be translated: the interface and the individual PeeTimes. Since the only language I know is English – and I’m not even that good at it – I’m relying on Google Translations to do all my translating. It’s working pretty well but I know from translating other languages to English that the translations can be a bit awkward.

Therefore I’m looking for some bi-lingual people out there who wouldn’t mind pitching in and editing the translations. There are no promises but if I can ever get enough income from RunPee then the translators will be the first people to get paid – after me. 🙂 In the meantime I would prefer that the translators have their own blogs because what I can offer is a little kickback in publicity. Each translator will get a page on the blog that tells about them and the RunPee website will also display a small picture of the translator. So you’ll be able to tell your friends that you’re a part of the team and they’ll see you here on the site.

Those who become translators will get access to an administrative site where they can edit the PeeTimes. Each week after I add new PeeTimes I’ll send out an email to the translators. At that point the translators will be able to log in and edit the existing translations done automatically by Google. It’s that simple.

So what do you say? If you want to be a translator then email me: polyGeek [ at ] RunPee.com and I’ll get you set up. I’ll need to know the language you can edit, a little info about yourself such as your blog, Twitter account, etc. Don’t worry, you’re not expected to see any movies or do any of your own PeeTimes.

Here is a list of the languages I currently need translators for…we will indicate which ones are spoken for as we go along:

  • Arabic
  • Chinese – possibly taken, might need more people!
  • Czech
  • Danish
  • Dutch
  • Finnish
  • French
  • German
  • Greek
  • Hindi
  • Italian
  • Japanese
  • Korean
  • Norwegian
  • Polish
  • Portuguese
  • Russian
  • Spanish – Taken!
  • Swedish
  • Indonesian

Movie review : Invictus


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You won’t find anything wrong with the story, or the acting nor the directing. That’s because Invictus is the product of the best in the business. And who else could possibly play Nelson Mandela besides Morgan Freeman? I’m not even sure this movie could have been made without Freeman. Matt Damon was also perfectly cast for the part of the rugby team captain.

Here’s the page at the Wikipedia about the poem Invictus for which the movie is name.

What did you think about Invictus? Share your thoughts about the movie in the comments below..

Movie review : Everybody’s Fine

RunPee - PeeTimes link
Everybody’s Fine
Everybody's Fine

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Another ho-hum movie. Nothing much to say about it, either good or bad. This is a watered down performance from Robert De Niro.

Times used to be that De Niro in a movie meant something. But de Niro playing an old man/father is something I can do without. Leave that to other old men. De Niro needs to play a character that could be bound to a wheel chair and still strike fear in the heart. Sadly, those days are probably passed. I think I’m going to go watch Head just to wash this out of my mind.

What did you think about Everybody’s Fine? Share your thoughts about the movie in the comments below.

Movie review : Brothers


[ Spoilers ahead ]

This really pisses me off. The previews made the story up to be about an affair between a wife and her husband’s brother while the husband is off fighting in Afghanistan. But there wasn’t an affair. It was nothing but a kiss? Just a kiss?

The real drama came from what Sam – the husband – had to do while he was a POW. That’s some serious stuff and more than worthy of carrying a dramatic story.

But we only get a little bit of that, and then a little bit of the brother/wife indiscretion, which splits the story right down the middle. If the producters had just chosen one or the other they could have made a much better and more focused movie.

What did you think about Brothers? Share your thoughts about the movie in the comments below.