I saw that movie last night, and it was possibly the most WTF movie I have seen since Gus Van Sant’s completely pointless ‘Gerry’. Here are the SPOILERIFFIC things that W’ed the F out of me…
Weird Alien Animals
What gives? The movie seemed to be obsessed with shoe-horning in as many odd, alien animal species as possible.
I couldn’t even see a merchandise angle, as these creatures not so much looked odd, as they appear to be poorly designed. That’s unusual for a franchise that even at its nadir has always had impeccable production design. Crystal foxes? Horses with Yoda heads? Bug-eyed owl penguins? Give up already…
Benicio Del Toro
What was he doing in the film? I mean, he didn’t play a character. It was just Benicio Del Toro. It’s not that I don’t think Del Toro is a great actor. He has a great screen presence across his movies. But there was nothing Star Warsy about his presence in this film.
His inclusion was about as odd as if they had put Vincent Vega in the film too. And how on earth did it just so happen that Finn and Rose get locked up in a cell with the best locksmith/code-breaker in the galaxy. Was he waiting for a cell-mate so that he could impress them with this skills?
That wasn’t Luke Skywalker. Even Mark Hamill himself spoke out to state that he didn’t think the character written for him in ‘The Last Jedi’ was the same character that appeared in the original trilogy. And what was the point in that whole force projection business if doing it made him pop his clogs anyway. He might as well have turned up for some fisty-cuffs. His sister didn’t seem that glad to see him either.
Vice Admiral Holdo
Laura Dern’s portrayal of Holdo was one of the high points of the film, but her character’s actions made no sense. Why didn’t she reveal her plan to Poe Dameron about creating a diversion with the big ship while the other ships scurried off to the rebel base. Instead of keeping him in the loop, she inspired an open mutiny and put her command at risk.
You know where I’m going with this one… Surviving an explosion intact, floating in a vacuum for several minutes without bloating, suffocating, freezing to death or having an aneurysm due to gas passing through her system. Then using the force to float towards a conveniently proximal air-lock door. I actually thought she was going to knock on the window for a second and shout ‘Yoo Hoo’.
So just at the start of the final battle, one of the resistance troops dabs his finger on the ground and gives it a wee taste. “It’s salt…” he declares. He would clearly have known that he was on a salt planet without having to taste the ground. This was clearly an incredibly clumsy plot device put in place to cover up the fact that the scene looked an awful lot like the snowy Hoth scene from Empire.
Well he was crap wasn’t he? The one act of evil Sith violence that he performed in two movies was to bonk Rey in the side of the head with a flying lightsaber. No Palpatine-style hand-lightning. No funky triple-bladed lightsaber, dispatched with a myriad of stunning kung-fu movies.
The Royal Guard
After Snoke had been dispatched, what were the royal guard doing? They would be unemployed after Snoke’s demise, so why on earth they decided to turn on a couple of capable jedi’s who had just taken out their boss, one of whom was technically their new boss, I have no idea.
What No Lando?
So pretty much every major Star Wars character makes an appearance in the new films. Except, there is the huge omission of Lando Calrissian. Given the diversity issues that Hollywood has been suffering from for the past years, why omit the key black character from the original trilogy? It’s not like Billy Dee Williams is overwhelmed with work these days. Even his flat faced BFF, Nien Nunb made a brief appearance, but no Lando…
Finishing The Job
Why didn’t the naughty First Order finish off the final 400 (minus casualties) resistance at the end. They had nowhere to go, and the first order still had a huge fleet of ships. Surely they had the back entrance of the big cave covered? Or why didn’t they just nuke the planet from orbit? Donald Trump could dispatch an entire North Korea in just a few minutes, and yet the resource-rich First Order can’t wipe out a tiny collection of cornered rebel scum with their gargantuan battle fleet. The only reason the Empire used AT-ATs in episode two was that they had to take out a shield generator from the ground. There was no shield generator on planet Red-Sand-Covered-With-Salt. This is possibly the biggest plot-hole in the whole film.
Well it was a watchable film, but after the highly impressive, ‘Rogue One’, the lastest movie in Lucas’s franchise made no sense whatsoever and completely dropped the ball. There were so many other little niggles, such as:
- Rey’s lack of charisma and her instant learning of the ways of The Force.
- The shit Yoda puppet.
- The crap casino scene with the mustachioed gambler from a 1920’s gangster film.
- The rebel land-speeders with the pointless stick dragging in the ground.
- Finn flying in the path of a Death Star laser beam without being incinerated.
- Captain Phasma’s quick death.
- The ginger whinger First Order commander that doesn’t get executed by Kylo Ren.
- The inexplicable, homoerotic Kylo Ren nipple flash scene.
- BB-8’s coin projectile moment as a follow-up to the ugnaught trying to buy a drink.
- Maz Kanata’s pointless hologram call.
- Kylo Ren’s motivation for being an evil pain in the arse.
But I can’t be bothered writing ‘Another 10 Crap Things About The Last Jedi’.
The next phase of my project, to convert my rotten old garden shed into a full on bike shed was to add all the bike accessories. In part 1, I rebuilt the floor, fixed the door and got the shed functional again. Now I had to add the bike hangers, and deal with security so that even if a rotten tea leaf should attempt to steal my bikes, their efforts would end in failure. The solution would involve using grade A Kryptonite locks and a sneaky CCTV system capturing anyone who steps foot in my yard!
The Bike Hangers
Feedback Sports make excellent hinged bike hangers that are safe saving, well built and look pretty cool. Not a total punt here, as I had spotted them being used in the work bike shed. The hinge allows you to angle the hung bike any way you like, so really handy.
I thought fitting the hinge would be easy until I spend twenty minutes drilling a hole into the wall that was only half the length of a screw. By that time, my drill was red hot and the battery dead. Plus I had done this to the drill bit:
That’s when I realised that I needed to buy yet another power tool… an SDS rotary hammer drill.
Finally, I could get the hangers mounted…
Kryptonite are pretty much the market leaders in bike security in the UK. I decided not to take any chances! The Kryptonite Stronghold Anchor would give me an immovable unbreakable point on the wall that I could chain stuff to.
Then a Kryptonite grade A chain and padlock could be used to chain the bikes to the anchor.
The fact that these two bad boys are used for motorcycles certainly provides some piece of mind.
Finally, I now had a shed that could fit two bikes, anchor them to the wall, and still give me a bit of space to spare. Nothing is going to stop a determined thief, but I certainly have made it fairly tricky. Adding CCTV to the equation could be a way to catch any (hopefully ill-fated) attempts on camera…
|Kryptonite Stronghold Anchor||Evans||1||£48.99||£48.99||https://www.evanscycles.com/kryptonite-stronghold-anchor-00104659|
|Kryptonite Chain Padlock||Wiggle||1||£68.38||£68.38||http://www.wiggle.co.uk/kryptonite-new-york-fahgettaboudit-chain-padlock|
|Feedback Sports Velohinge||Tredz||2||£25.76||£51.52||https://www.tredz.co.uk/.Feedback-Sports-Velo-Hinge_77061.htm|
|Bosch SDS Rotary Hammer Drill||B&Q||1||£80.00||£80.00||http://www.diy.com/list/bosch-550w-240v-corded-sds-plus-rotary-hammer-drill-psbh2100re/174057_BQ.prd|
- Once again, it’s the tools that massively add to the price.
- Kryptonite locks are bloody expensive, but they are considered the best.
- Combi drills are useless for masonry.
- After a big project, you are left with a collection of expensive tools that you need to work out what to do next with.
- Every new project seems to require yet a new expensive power tool.
Possibly nobody is interested in reading about me bleating on about sawing and drilling bits of wood. It’s a potential snorathon for the majority, while a minority will come to the conclusion that I possibly have minimal personality, if this is what I spend my free time doing. I guess that’s the beauty of blogging!
When I moved into my flat, I realised that I was sharing my living space with my two bicycles, whereas before, I had the luxury of a bicycle locker. Luckily, I had an out. The yard area at the back of my flat featured a shed. To convert the old shed into a bicycle shed, I would need to do quite a few things!
- Get a new lock for the shed door
- Replace the current and rotting floor
- Put some kind of bicycle rack inside the shed
- Mount a ‘fuck-off’ lock onto the wall
I set about tackling steps 1 and 2…
The Shed Door
The lock was an easy one to sort out. I literally took the old one off and screwed the new one on. Luckily, the designs were very similar so all the fittings were in the right place.
This was the first big hurdle. The chipboard floor was completely rotten. I needed to hack the existing floor to bits. Underneath the floor was an evolving hotbed of detritus including a snail graveyard, an arachnid incubatory farm, and lots of random mouldy padding supporting the previously rotten floor. I totally blitzed this, and was pleased to find solid paving stones beneath.
The job would have taken bloomin’ ages, had I not bought one of these:
And one of these…
The feet on the underneath of the frame were of varying size with the intentions of making the floor level.
With this in place, I could then cut the new particle board flooring to size and screw the pieces to the frame.
|4″ x 2″ beams||B&Q||4||£2.98||£11.92||http://www.diy.com/departments/cls-timber-t38mm-w63mm-l2400mm/27507_BQ.prd|
|Flooring (OSB 3 Sheet)||B&Q||1||£8.74||£8.74||http://www.diy.com/departments/osb-3-sheet-th9mm-w610mm-l1220mm-1/1696233_BQ.prd|
|Yale Rim Lock||B&Q||1||£15.43||£15.43||http://www.diy.com/departments/yale-43mm-2-lever-rim-lock/252725_BQ.prd|
Total cost of getting the shed to be functional: £38.58
That’s £133 on tools!
- The tools are the most expensive part of a job. (I suppose once you have them you’re good)
- Screws are way expensive compared to timber.
- A circular saw seemed like a crazy investment, but it made the job very easy. The number of times I had to recut stuff.
- The Workmate bench and the clamps were also must-haves. I could work safely and accurately.
- Get to B&Q as early as possible: you always need to go back for something that broke, or something you forgot!
Also: this is the way to make straight cuts with a circular saw. Really didn’t know and it’s handy to find out!
The next stage would be to get the bike hangers and the security sorted out…
The Murder Bears 2018 Calendar has arrived from the printers, folks!
I am raising money for The White Lodge Centre and all the proceeds are going to this wonderful charity.
I am also running the London Marathon to raise cash, so pulling out all the stops. The calendars are £15 each. If you want one, donate to the justgiving link and let me know your mail address.
I have been painting the Murder Bears characters over the last year and showing them off on instagram. The calendar showcases all manner of evil bear from sadistic Nurse Betsy, to the edgy, world dominator, Presibear Trumpton. There’s even a festive Murder Bear for December!
The calendar is A3 size when opened out. January starts with a full-on visit from the infected.
The occasional visit to popular culture occurs, with this Suicide Squad inspired September Murder Bear painting.
And some classic movie monsters are paid homage. Let me know if you want one!!!