Game Of Thrones Moment: The Ghost of Harrenhal

April 30, 2012 at 9:23 am

Weekly Game of Thrones Review | The Athletic Nerd


Season One was memorable because at any given moment, a major character could fall.  Nobody was untouchable and so many perished in unexpected and compelling twists.  This season promises much more of the same as there can only be one on the iron throne but it hasn’t happened yet…  Until Episode 5 that is.

My biggest fear after last week’s smoke monster finale was an episode free of the Stannis/Renly storyline.  Thankfully, The Ghost of Harrenhal picks up right were the black smokey birth left off.  This episode presented several interesting moments but none greater than the smoke monster’s murder of Renly Baratheon.

Renly Baratheon game of thrones

Choosing a moment that occurs within the first 5 minutes of an episode kind of hints that the rest of the episode is sub bar.  Quite the opposite.  I chose this moment because it’s mentioned throughout.  Renly’s death coupled with his banner men joining Stannis reaches every corner of the world quickly.

Stannis now possesses a massive army of men and a huge fleet of ships.  And the other players reacted accordingly.  In King’s Landing, Joffrey prepares for the siege with fire much to Tyrion ‘Don’t call me a Demon Monkey’ Lannisters dismay.  Out in Qarth, Daenerys sees it as her opportunity to strike with so much chaos in Westeros.  The Robb vs Tywin war will certainly be impacted by the news and the list goes on.

Renly’s death was a catalyst and a perfect way for the writers to sum up where everyone stands in the war.

Even more important was the realization that Stannis’ men have begun to suspect Melisandre (who was curiously absent in this episode) as a master manipulator and the true reason for the army’s ‘good fortunes’.  It was a great time to cast a little doubt that her intentions aren’t…  Ahem… noble.

UPDATE: It’s tough to tell who would win in a fight between this smoke monster and the one from Lost…  But Stannis and Melisandre’s smoke baby is certainly ruthless.  All the Lost monster did was throw people around for the most part…


The rest of the episode was mostly made up of characters reacting to Renly’s death.  However, as the dominos began to fall, Arya finally got some revenge.  Last week I wondered how long she would suffer before something good happened.  Enter Jaqen H’ghar, a man she saved, who pledges 3 kills in payment and all she has to do is provide names.

Immediately, she takes out The Tickler but it’s interesting that she didn’t choose Tywin first.  King Joffrey and Tywin HAVE to be on her list right?  Right?

We’ll have to wait and see next week.

Catch up on previous episodes:

Episode 1 Moment
Episode 2 Moment
Episode 3 Moment
Episode 4 Moment

Top 10 Snatch (The Movie) Moments

April 24, 2012 at 11:24 pm

Top 10 Snatch (The Movie) Moments | All Time Best Countdown


Snatch is an absolute classic that I lived without for years because I only owned it on VHS.  It’s expensive to upgrade all the movies you adore but finally, I got myself a copy of Snatch on Blu Ray and it’s still amazing.

So much so that I decided to countdown my favorite 10 Snatch movie moments.

10. Periwinkle Blue

Have you ever watched scenes featuring Brad Pitt’s Mickey with the subtitles on?  It’s a completely different experience when you aren’t trying to decipher his words on your own.  For example, I had no idea he said

“Save your breath for cooling your porridge.”

9. The Opening Credits

One of my favorite opening sequences ever.  What a fantastic way to introduce so many fantastic characters.

8. You Take Sugar?

Brick Top.  You can’t have a top 10 Snatch list without multiple Brick Top appearances.  Alan Ford is so good in this role.

“No thank you Turkish…  I’m sweet enough.”

7. All Bets Are Off!

“I’d be doing even better if you’d stop using my name.”

6. Mickey vs Gorgeous George

I love everything about this scene.

5. Two types of balls

Bullet Tooth Tony and his Desert Eagle .50 vs 3 horrible criminals carrying fake guns.  Nice.

4. No f*cking wheels?

Mickey is back to claim the number 4 spot on this list.

“Why the f*ck would I want a caravan that’s got no f*cking wheels?”

Arguably the funniest line in a movie that’s overflowing with brilliant dialogue.

3. It was 2 minutes 5 minutes ago?

This is why I love this movie.  You could completely eliminate Charlie and the movie would be just fine…

But that’s just it.  It would be mediocre without moments and details like:

“Five minutes Turkish.”

2. Funny Angle

Ah.  Tyrone.  You silly fat bastard.  But don’t question him because he’s done a rally driving course…  Ain’t you Tyrone?

“Course I have.”

1. As Greedy as a Pig

“Do you know what nemesis means?”

Brick Top claims the number 1 spot with a speech that’s as hilarious as it is intimidating.  Who knew you had to be weary of a man who keeps a pig farm.

What’s your favorite Snatch (The Movie) moment?

Click here for more Countdowns on The Athletic Nerd

I Can’t Remember The First Movie I Ever Saw…

April 24, 2012 at 10:10 am

The Birth of a movie nerd | The Athletic Nerd


Movie moments can inspire and motivate.  They can change the way you look at the world.  They can show you worlds you’ve never seen.  They stick with you.  Birth of a Movie Nerd is about the genesis of my movie obsession.  But that’s not necessarily limited to the movies that inspired me.

Watching movies is only the beginning of a film nerd’s journey.  A film fan’s life is full of wonderful moments that reach far beyond the beautiful darkness in a movie theater.  We all have specific memories of these moments.  We are all addicted to fueling our imaginations.  We live for good stories and memorable characters.  We immerse ourselves in the movies we love and we long for the film’s we can’t wait to experience.

But it all has to start somewhere right?

When I began brainstorming how to start this series, I focused on a moment that many film fans fondly remember.


Unfortunately, I have absolutely no memory of my first movie experience.  It makes me sad.  I feel like I’ve robbed myself of something.  Everyone looks forward to looking back on the memories they cherish.  I feel like, if I remembered, the first movie I experienced would be extremely special to me.

Still, if I can’t remember a specific film, I can at least narrow it down based on the childhood I had can’t I?

I Can't Remember The First Movie I Ever Saw... | Birth of A Movie Nerd

My parents weren’t really that strict with movies when I was growing up.  But I was still sheltered from horror films as a youngster.  My guess is my first movie was a cartoon or a goofy comedy.  Something my parents would have put on while I laid on a blanket trying to avoid an afternoon nap.  We all know kids lose that battle 9 times out of 10 so does that mean I slept through my first movie?

I think I may be over thinking this a bit…

I was born in 1983.  Realistically, I wouldn’t remember much until the age of 5 so that’s a good place to start.


According to Box Office Mojo, the top grossing movie in 1985 was Back to the Future. (Nice!)  I kind of doubt that was the first movie I ever saw but I wouldn’t be disappointed if it was.  I didn’t see The Goonies until a few years ago which is tragic but eliminates another classic.  There were a few that jumped out at me but non that really felt right.

What if I didn’t see my first movie in theaters?  It could have very well been on television.  So my next stop is 1984 since it took a long time for movies to appear on television and video in those days.

Ghostbusters, Temple of Doom, Gremlins, Terminator,The Natural, The Neverending Story…  The list goes on and on although I seriously doubt Terminator was my first film at the age of 5.

XTRA | Woman In Black tickets

I Can't Remember The First Movie I Ever Saw... | Birth of A Movie Nerd

I tend to think it would have been a Disney animated film.

Disney released 25 animated films by the time I turned 5 years old but not all of them found their way into our families collection.  So I narrowed those 25 down to 10 that I cherished the most.

  • 10. The Fox & The Hound
  • 9. Snow White & The Seven Dwarfs
  • 8. Fantasia
  • 7. Pinocchio
  • 6. Robin Hood
  • 5. Bambi
  • 4. Alice In Wonderland
  • 3. Sleeping Beauty
  • 2. The Jungle Book
  • 1. Peter Pan

XTRA | All Time Best Disney Movie Song

When I finished ranking the top 10 Disney movies released before 1985, a memory popped into my head.  I was young and my family was searching for something to watch on a summer night.  My parents made popcorn and we curled up with Peter Pan.

I remember gathering an excessive amount of pillows and blankets on the floor in front of the television.  I was transported to Neverland.  So I’ve decided to make Disney’s Peter Pan my honorary ‘first movie’.  There are probably other options out there (Perhaps The Muppet Movie?) but Peter Pan feels right.

At the end of the day, just going down memory lane considering the possibilities has been fun.

XTRA | Confessions of a Wannabe Animator


Game Of Thrones Moment: Garden of Bones

April 23, 2012 at 10:18 am

Weekly Game of Thrones Review | The Athletic Nerd


Episode 1 Moment
Episode 2 Moment
Episode 3 Moment

She gave birth to smoke!  A smoke baby…  A shadow-light-smoke-monster-baby!  That’s a great way to win this week’s Game of Thrones moment.

Last week, I talked about the battle that would kickstart the action in season 2 and Garden of Bones went above and beyond.  It was by far the most interesting episode of the season that also featured the return of Robb Start and Daenerys Targaryen.  But it was the episode’s shady final moments that truly lit up screen.

Melisandre has been a mystery this entire season.  Surviving poisonous wine is one thing but giving birth to a smoke monster was definitely a game changer.  What the hell is that thing and how does Stannis plan to use it to win the war?  Is he going to send his mystical “son” to his brother’s tent or directly to King’s Landing?  What is Melisandre end game here?  Did she tell Stannis that she would be giving birth to smoke?

Tons of questions and that is why Game of Thrones is awesome.

Game of Thrones Moment: Garden Of Bones | Season 2 Episode 4 Review

This moment was a fantastic reminder that ANYTHING is possible on this show and it’s only the 4th episode!

Garden of Bones

The rest of the episode was full of crazy moments specifically during scenes involving the ruthless punk King Joffrey.  He’s an ass.  Once again Tyrion is front and center to save Sansa from Joffrey’s torment.  And how does the King repay his Hand for embarrassing him?  By torturing two whores for fun…

Speaking of torture, Arya has to be one of the strongest characters on this show.  How she manages to witness a rat ripping people’s chests apart without flinching is nuts.  At one point are the writer’s going to give this girl some good news?  It’ll be interesting to see where she ends up now that Tywin is in the picture.

All in all, Garden of Bones raised the bar yet again.  This season has delivered 4 amazing episodes so far.

Until next week, there is a larger issue to discuss…  Who would win in a fight?

Game of Thrones Smoke Monster vs Lost’s Smoke Monster

Game of Thrones Moment: Garden Of Bones | Lost Smoke Monster

The Northern Ontario Film Studios

April 18, 2012 at 10:14 am

The Athletic Nerd Independent Film Blog


I grew up in Sudbury, Ontario and Men With Brooms was one of the only big movies I remember filming there.  That’s all about to change thanks to David Joseph Anselmo and his company Hideaway Pictures.  David and his team are looking to kick start a booming film industry in Northern Ontario by building a studio in the city.

The team recently received approval from the city to set up studio space in an old hockey arena with construction of a new facility planned in the future.

This is fantastic news for the area as the development will surely attract more filmmakers to the North.  Not to mention this project will aid the talented filmmakers who are already living in the region.  I can’t wait to see what’s in store for Sudbury’s film industry.

Check out Hideaway Pictures here.