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Just checked in near 5142 Albemarle Rd, Charlotte, USA http://nok.it/MfwkU

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here with my gf and parents @ Biltmore Hotel-Oklahoma, 401 S Meridian Ave, Oklahoma City, USA http://nok.it/2U58w

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Just checked in @ Post Office-Colesville, 13217 New Hampshire Ave, Silver Spring, USA http://nok.it/Fmh32

My weekend

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So I got to go to Mopar races here in the Denver area. It was great except for the excessive amounts of sun that I received. As the son of a gearhead, the exhaust was intoxicating. I took plenty of pics with the cell too.

Highlights: I think the motorcycles broke track records. I saw several run 7 seconds and one 6.98 run. I learned that women do better than men here because they are lighter. Interesting indeed.

Top fuel was awesome except for the stop-and-go aspect. We would get 3 runs and then they would stop to clear the track. Very infuriating. I learned they burn about a gallon a second. We saw some 5.40s with the Top Fuel cars.

It was also very pale there. I can count on one hand with fingers left over the number of black people I saw. There were a few more Hispanic people in attendance but not many. I also felt like I was in western Kansas at this event. Lots of farmer's tans, inappropriate clothing, etc.

One for the record books

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As a Midwesterner, I'm used to snow, but DC is truly in a sh!tstorm of epic proportions.  In case you didn't hear, the Atlantic coast (VA to PA and a few places north of that) got record breaking snow fall last Friday.  DC is still digging out and today the Fed was closed to allow time to dig out. 

On the heels of that, tomorrow the Fed will be closed as well. The National Weather Service is projecting from 12P Tuesday to 7P Wednesday ANOTHER 10 to 20 inches of snow.  Now mind you, DC got at least 18 inches from last Friday.  It comes up to my mid-calf and I'm every bit of 5'11". 

This will be an epic winter.  The only downside is being stuck inside.  I left the house exactly one time since Friday.  The buses aren't running and above ground subway service has been suspended.  At this rate, the Fed might be closed until Thurs or Friday. 




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Belief or survival

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So T.E.N. had a thought about the conservatives/Religious Right.  Obviously, there are politicians that represent/pander to their interests.  America is slowly leaving the Religious Right behind.  Politicans are stuck in a quandary.  Do they stick with the status quo even though it is slowly dying or slowly move to the left.  Neither decision is a particularly easy move to make. 

If they stay, then they will eventually be out of a job.  If they move, they will immediately be out of a job.  T.E.N. expects that most politicians only think of the here and now versus what could be.

So what's a "Family Values" politician supposed to do?  Playing with populist sentiments creates blowback. 

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Night at the movies: G.I. Joe

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Let T.E.N. start by saying...this movie was thoroughly enjoyable.  It was a definite upgrade over the cartoon movie.  Unfortunately, it was a Channing Tatum vehicle.  Marlon Wayans was comic relief and had a romantic interest.  Joseph Leavitt is Cobra Commander, the villain in Gone in 60 Seconds plays Destro, and Zartan is this very familiar guy but T.E.N. can't name him. 

T.E.N. was enthralled with Snake Eyes and Stormshadow.  Snake Eyes was easily the coolest character in the entire movie and he didn't say a word.  They even delved into the backstory (incorrectly!) but they tried to lay the groundwork for those unfortunate people that did not grow up with the OG G.I. Joe cartoon. 

The action was good and slightly over the top, but that was ok.  The chase scene is easily top 5 all time.  It's not a traditional car chase scene either.  Unfortunately the plot is extremely transparent.  T.E.N. was stunned that people did not understand what was going on at the end of the movie. 

Of course, they had to pay homage with some cheesy lines but that's to be expected.  The action did slow at times, but overall it's a good movie...if you watched the cartoons when you were younger. 

The backstory for Cobra Commander and Destro was done very well.  T.E.N. was trying to think of a way to introduce that relationship but they did it well.  Commander's costume was a little cheesy though.  Maybe that can be fixed later on. 

Obviously, they left an opening for two sequels.  The movie did well in the theaters so a sequel is in the works.  Bring back everyone and you have a great sequel. 



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Night at the movies: Transformers 2

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The movie was action-packed but T.E.N. kept noticing some alarming things. 

1. Bay's portrayal of women:  Either they were sultry vixens or loopy (Sam's mama).  Unless....

2. The women were in the American military.  The Jordanian military made an appearance...only to be destroyed by the Decepticons.  The US military was always on point, always right, always on target.  We get it Bay you believe in the US military. 

3. A serious distrust of the government.  T.E.N. will admit he's not the gungest ho American, but the only bureaucrat was immediately unlikeable.  (Writer's note:  Why would he be spewing obviously classified information to a roomful of people?  There's no way everyone in that room is cleared to hear what he casually tells the overhearing Decepticons.  T.E.N. realizes that was used to advance the story, but come on some subtlety?)

4.  The coontastic twin robots.  T.E.N. was torn on the racism of the bots, but they were clearly minstrels and only for "comic" relief.  The audience ate it up.  Meh.

5. This unrealistic view of college...see #1.  He makes college seem like only parties, weed, and hot chicks.  Doesn't sound any school T.E.N. went to Arizona State notwithstanding j/k. 

6.  This movie was about 2.5 hours long and it felt like it.  For an example of a movie that is a short 2.5 hours, see Quantum of Solace. 

Now what was good. 

He brought in the Constructicons and Devastator.  T.E.N. and his boy geeked out when they started merging. 

Optimus Prime had a goon makeover between the 1st and 2nd movie...so did Bumblebee. 

Soundwave was prominent in the storyline.  In the cartoon, he was a tape recorder/player so his iteration in the movie made perfect sense.  It also sounded like they got the same voice actor.  Well done! 

T.E.N. is looking forward to the appearance of the Dinobots in the 3rd movie and you know there will be another.  Me Grimlock like war stories!   




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Pointless

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That's the overwhelming feeling after trying to use the Library of Congress. The initial part of the story is the fault of yours truly. T.E.N. expected to just galavant into the researcher's portion of the Jefferson wing of the LoC. Not so.

So T.E.N. registered (which was streamlined and quick)then back to the entrance. After buzzing to find out how to get in, T.E.N. was directed to the Adams building. After passing through security and taking an elly down to the C floor, walking through the corridor and finally gettin into the Jefferson wing, the fun had just began. T.E.N. considers himself a fairly intelligent individual so when a sign said 150, it was assumed that was floor 1. Hit the button and off we go. NOT SO FAST.

The man at the desk described a byzantine method to get to the Asian Reading Room which WAS ON THE SAME FLOOR AS WHERE THE MAN GIVING DIRECTIONS IS. T.E.N goes back down and asks another person to make sure he is going the right way. The new directions contradicted the old, and T.E.N. said as much. Finally, T.E.N. was pointed in the right direction.

New problem, Uzbekistan (in Central Asia) is not in the Asian Reading Room! WTF! South, SE, China, Japan, etc. but no Uzbekistan even though its the ASIAN Reading Room. The woman said to try the European Room. REALLY! Uzbekistan is in Europe now.

T.E.N set out towards there only to stop and ask directions one final time, and was redirected to the African and Middle Eastern room. Then only to find that the room is closed on Saturday and only open until 5pm Monday through Friday! T.E.N. is sooo through.

PS. T.E.N. had a nagging feeling that Uzbekistan would fall in that room but didn't want to believe it because Uzbekistan is neither Middle Eastern nor African in any way, shape, or form.

Even the Library of Congress does not know how to properly classify Central ASIA! Put the region in the GD Asian Reading Room.

When boring is good...

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T.E.N.'s family is not the best, we have had some serious problems that even continue to this day.  There are some families that put mine in perspective. 

It also reminds me there are some things that T.E.N. still needs to do.  T.E.N. has a family member he has not been in contact with that he will make some inquiries about.  It is laziness on T.E.N's part and he has seen it from the other side.  The Educated Negro has piecemeal information and a few questions here and there could clear things up.  T.E.N. hasn't really pursued it because it could upset the "order of things" in the house of the parents of the Educated Negro, however, sometimes things need to be upset. 



It's official

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T.E.N. has been late on keeping people abreast, but The Educated Negro is now cleared to work for the government.  Friends of friends have made contact about what this can do for T.E.N., its pretty good. 

The Educated Negro received word after only 3 months or so, which is remarkably fast.  Keep in mind that T.E.N. is a model citizen so it makes perfect sense.  So back to the right coast T.E.N. returns!  Holla atcha people! 

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There seems to be quite an uproar over whether the President bowed to the Saudi king.  Before we get into that, let's contrast that with the furor over the First Lady of the United States touching the Queen of England. 

So let T.E.N. get this right, it's not ok to touch the Queen of one country and  it's not ok to bow to the King of another? 

T.E.N. thinks the right has their panties in a bunch because they think the President was being subservient to another foreigner, however, they are wrong.  That is called respect.  This person is royalty. 

T.E.N. thinks the problem is that the President bowed to a brown person.  Wait til Obama does something respectful when he visits Africa.  They will lose their natural minds. 

Oh "Religious" right, you are so entertaining... and crazy all at the same time. 



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Night at the movies...Fast & Furious

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F&F is a pure man movie...explosions, women kissing women, women in skimpy clothes, gun fights, and car scenes.  This movie delivers all that and then some.  There is one car scene that T.E.N. is still debating where it is top 5 worthy.  It is that good.  It kinda felt like the car chase scene in F&F: Tokyo Drift though. 

The rest of the movie?  .... Not really.  Simple dialogue, T.E.N. thought that Rob Cohen had come back to write this one too.  The same cast from the original all come back for the 4th installment.  Included is the guy who played Yero in Miami Vice.  He sounds exactly the same, all he needs is the curl and to be talkin about ya-yo.

Of course they left the door open just enough for a 5th installment if they do the right numbers for this movie.   

Unless you are feinin for some Paul Walker, Vin Diesel, Michelle Rodriguez, and Jordana Brewster save your paper and get the DVD.  It's aight but it's not John Blaze.



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Life is good!

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The title says it all.  Things are goin relatively well for the OK segment of the fam.  Big sis got her job on and is liking it.  T.E.N. is sure the parents are glad to have her around.  They have to get lonely sometime. 

My gf is inchin closer and closer to being a doctor.  It's been a long hard struggle for her.  She has hurt, cried, screamed, and called out to God for this PhD.  T.E.N. thinks that her exclamations to Him have been heard.  T.E.N. is speakin to Mr. Let-there-be-light for her as well. 

As for T.E.N. school is progressing and he will be in a year long fellowship at the Energy Department.  That could very well turn into a J-O-B with Energy or elsewhere because of the perks and contacts that will be made. 

Also, T.E.N.'s advisor informed him that T.E.N. should consider a PhD.  T.E.N., PhD?  Then the blog would have to be changed. 





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Night at the movies....12 Rounds

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So T.E.N. saw the newest WWE movie promoting John Cena.  Now the movie is a typical man movie...explosions and crazy sh*t happening, however there is a huge problem with this movie. 

During the promotional commercials they played themselves.  The same director from Die Hard 2 directed this movie as well and it shows.  Anyone who remembers the plot from that movie will see simple similarities in 12 rounds.  Revenge is a factor, the hero running around performing crazy tasks that don't make any sense until the end of the movie approaches. 

T.E.N. thinks that WWE underpaid him so he just remixed Die Hard 2 and called it a day. 

Another thing the level of incompetence of the FBI agents is appalling.  If you pay to see it you'll see what T.E.N. means.  Saying all that if this was a stock, this would be a hold as in hold onto your money because it will be a bargain later on. 

John Cena works in those blue-collar roles though, he was a Marine and now a po-lice.  Don't try to make him a nuclear scientist or deep see diver or president.  He needs to stay in his lane. 



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earthlights
This movie was fantastic.  If it were a stock, T.E.N. would say BUY. 

The voice actors are great specifically Reese Witherspoon, Kiefer Sutherland, and Seth Rogan.  It also prompted this thought about cartoon movies.  They really are for adults.  The animation is for the children, but the dialogue, etc. is for the adults.  The kids don't pay attention to all that because they are enthralled by the pictures. 

T.E.N. will leave the plot for you when you go see it.  In 3D it is a whole lot better.  Pixar is alos releasing some other gems as well, such as Up. 

It's also amazing how the technology has advanced since Toy Story.  The level of detail is breathtaking. 

Definitely see this movie. 



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Update

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T.E.N. is on the verge of gaining clearance to work for Uncle Sam!  The gov't dug all in my business, understandably so.  T.E.N. could have access to sensitive information so they have to make sure T.E.N. can't be compromised. 

T.E.N. has bigger plans after gaining clearance but won't put it all out here, yet.  If things break T.E.N.'s way, it will be a good day for the entire fam. 

------------------------------------

The quarter system is beatin T.E.N. down.  T.E.N. is ready for spring break, time for fall back and just watch TV and eat.  That's T.E.N.'s staycation. 


Blockbusters

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This summer is starting to feel alot like the 2003. There are some big budget movies such as Transformers 2.




Transformers : Revenge of The Fallen trailer HD

Then there's G.l. Joe



GI Joe The Rise Of Cobra Official Teaser Trailer in HD Superbowl Spot Ad

Lastly, the Fast and Furious tryin to cash in after the last two movies were meh at best.  So they bring back Vin Diesel, Paul Walker, Michelle Rodriguez, and most of the original cast  Um...not enthused. 

 


Fast & Furious 4 - 2009 HD Movie Trailer

Um...Souljaboy for the soundtrack...FAIL!


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Movie Night: Taken

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So T.E.N. went to see Taken.  It was a pretty standard fare thriller, with car chases and plenty of fighting. 

What surprised T.E.N. was that Liam Neeson's character was so ruthless.  In one scene, he shot someone's wife.  T.E.N. won't reveal more than that. 

Liam's character had a Jason Bourne-esque feel.  He was a former employee of the Agency, and the movie established that in several subtle clever ways.  His wife, Famke Janssen (X-Men trilogy) was utterly unlikeable in the movie.  Her husband, T.E.N. can't place in what movies he's seen him in. 

This is definitely a guy flick.  Be forewarned.


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Some thoughts

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Well today is T.E.N.'s bday, and tomorrow is the Inauguration.  T.E.N. would like to avoid the Obama is the culmination of Dr. King's dream meme that is spreading.  It has been increasingly difficult to watch CNN talk about the history that is about to unfold tomorrow without tearing up.  The question is why. 

It is the enormity of it all.  The fact that history is takin place before T.E.N.'s very eyes.  This is something that T.E.N.'s children, grand children, and great grandchildren will ask him about in his old age. 

If nothing else, this gives new life to the appeal of America, where anyone can truly be anything they want to.  That America even after 8 years of errors and false starts has the wherewithal, the ability, the audacity to simply start over.  For all that T.E.N. complains and harps on America's faults (which are many) there is no better nation on this planet.  NOW OR EVER.  This will sound hubristic but America is the greatest nation in human history.  T.E.N. has friends from all over the globe who have either come to the US or want to come to the US because of the opportunity that America represents. 

If MLK were able to come to Washington, he would be enheartened by the diverse people that have descended upon the nation's capitol to witness the inauguration of the 44th POTUS, Barack Hussein Obama.  Even as he reveled, he would remind us that even with the progress that has been made there is still much work to be done. 

CNN is on at almost 3AM EST and there are people on the National Mall right now.  That the nation's first black president will now reside in a city, in a building built on the backs of slave labor.

We haven't yet seen the mountaintop but we have an inkling of what it feels like and it feels good.  And with that, good night and may God truly bless the United States of America.


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Chase scenes

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T.E.N. wants to keep a list of the great chase scenes he has seen.

Matrix Reloaded
Ronin
Vantage Point
Gone in 60 Seconds
Bourne Supremacy
Bad Boys II
Eagle Eye
Live Free or Die Hard

Any others that T.E.N is forgetting?  Keep in mind these movies are decidedly new school...French Connection will get included as soon as T.E.N. watches it. 


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Movie review

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T.E.N. just finished watching Vantage Point.  The chase scene was top 5-worthy, along with Matrix Reloaded and Ronin.  The others escape T.E.N's recollection.  Quaid (Day after Tomorrow) was very good in his role, as was Forrest Whittaker (Last King of Scotland, Phone Booth), the guy from Lost, a supporting actor from Bourne Ultimatum.  Quaid was very believeable as a Secret Service agent. 

The only annoying part was that it constantly rewound to come back to the base scene to show everyone's perspective. 

The disbelief necessary was also problematic.  The US Secret Service is extremely protective of the POTUS to let some of the things happen that took place in Vantage.


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Busted night

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So T.E.N. wanted to go see the advanced screening of Quantum of Solace at the Harkins Northfield near the Denver airport.  We got there about 4 minutes late, and the chick at the front window was being a totally b**** about us being late.  There was another group that arrived when we did.  Eventually we got to talk to the manager and he simply said, "No."  The back of the ticket said that no late admissions. 

Now, T.E.N. understands the rules but the problem is simple.  Why in the ham sammich was the advanced screening out by the airport?  That don't make no kinda sense.  So let T.E.N. say this no more advanced screenings out of town?  That's creating a disincentive to go see the advanced screening.  


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A good point

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Law and Order is understandably a TV show, but the points it brings up are interesting.  The show T.E.N. is watchin is about insufficient care returned soldiers received after a tour in Iraq. 

Soldier care has been an issue.  The Washington Post did an article about the facilities at Walter Reed.  They weren't great by a long shot.  We, the public, hardly ever hear about the care "our troops" receive after they come home.  Isn't that part of supporting our troops?  The responsibility of sending young men and women to possibly die is that if they come home less than in tact is that we have the responsibility to care for them...PERIOD!! 

Soldiers enter into a contract, therefore we, the people, are bound to honor that contract. 


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Speechless

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This is straight up busted.  Honestly, T.E.N. would have lost his damn mind, if he found this on his receipt. 

Journey's, which sells broke down goods by the way, is officially on the DO NOT SHOP list.  Permanently.  Joining Timberland boots and Cristal for various reasons. 


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History

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Obama to be first African-American president


This is is is....hard to put into words.  Barack Hussein Obama is the 44th POTUS, President of the United States. 

Some random thoughts:  a shot of Jesse Jackson in the crowd in the Chi, in tears.  Jesse was the pioneer.  Part of this is yours too.  Now act right and Obama might hook you up. 

How does 43, George Bush, feel hearing how people are lookin forward to Jan 20?  You have to mess up pretty badly for the entire globe to be electric about the upcoming Obama administration.  T.E.N. has been cryin off and on all night.  The first non-white male president of the United States! 

Where were you when you heard? 

The work begins now.  Time to suit up! 

Who does he tab for his Cabinet?  Warren Buffet for Treasury?  Will he reach across the aisle and grab up Republicans for his Cabinet? 

It has been 40 years since 1968. 

UPDATE:  John McCain was very gracious.  He should continue in his role in AZ as Senator.  Please, please, please morph back into the Maverick.  Please America needs the Maverick, not Bitter John. 


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The old becomes new

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Law & Order has been running ad after ad after ad.  T.E.N. wanted to weigh in and sanction the move.  How did greasy talking Anthony Anderson land a gig with L/O?  Really?  It's a good career move for son.  That's regular work for starters. 

The other cat should be familiar to those of us pushin 30.  He was in Clueless.  He ain't changed a bit even sounds the same.  T.E.N. will make time to watch some of the new L/O. 


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Night at the movies: Max Payne

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Let T.E.N. start with a disclaimer:  He has never played either Max Payne video game, so he had no frame of reference for the movie.  Having said all that, the movie was flaming hot garbage!

It is surprising that Mark Wahlberg would sign on for such filth.  His performance was mediocre at best.  Mila Kunis from That 70s Show, tries hard to be Russian but flops amazingly. 

From what T.E.N. has seen of Max Payne (mostly commercials) there is a lot more gun play than the movie showed. 

T.E.N. can say unequivocally that this is the first time he has paid good movie and walked out thinkin the movie was just horrible.  FIRST TIME!

Max Payne is a definite DO NOT SEE!  Save your money!


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Eagle Eye review

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A very action packed film.  It stars Shia LeBouf (Transformers), Michelle Monaghan (Mission Impossible 3), Billy Bob Thornton (Bad Santa), Rosario Dawson (He Got Game), Anthony Mackie (8 Mile, She Hate Me), and Michael Chiklis (The Shield, Fantastic Four series).  Each person does a very believeable and respectable job. 

Not to give away too much, but the first chase scene is top 5 all time.  The second chase scene is on the level of the chase in Live Free or Die Hard. 

Eagle Eye feels like a new updated Enemy of the State, mixed with 2001 Space Odyssey, and War Games. 

The dialogue is good, action is intense at times, and overall T.E.N. recommends Eagle Eye.   


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Movie review

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T.E.N. just got back from watching Body of Lies.  Great, great movie.  Russell Crowe and Leonardo DiCaprio put in remarkable performances.  Leo is the clandestine agent on the ground in the Middle East and Russell is his handler in the CIA.  Mark Strong gave a star turning performance as the head of Jordanian intelligence.  If Mark Strong's star doesn't start to rise, something is wrong.  On to the movie...

It felt a little long (or so T.E.N. heard).  It has a Bourne-esque feel to it.  A very intelligent spy thriller.  Leo was very believeable as an agent in the Middle East.  It also removed the Bond feel to spy thrillers.  It was very nitty gritty and it removed the moralizing that is characteristic of America. 

While Body isn't for everyone, most fans of the Bourne trilogy will enjoy this.  Ridley, you did it son.   

Also saw 5 previews and 4 of them were worth seeing in the theater.  The odd one out was the Reese Witherspoon/Vince Vaughn "4 Christmases."  It felt like just about every Vince Vaughn flick after Wedding Crashers. 

Will Smith's film, Seven Pounds, was ok.  It felt like Pursuit of Happyness-esque for some reason.

Tom Cruise's Valkryie about the planned assassination of Hitler looks promising. 

The new James Bond actor is in a WWII resistance movie, that looks fantastic. 

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