Bio: My name is Kyle Yung. I have a Bachelor of Fine Arts Degree in theatre and English from Hanover College, as well as a Masters Degree in creative writing from Full Sail University. I have a wide array of experience, including starting a community theatre company, working as a sound designer, photographing sports for a newspaper and operating heavy machinery at a steel mill.
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The Superbowl Halftime Show has become an iconic display over the years. The performances have showcased talented musicians at some of their best and worst moments. Some of these things, such as the 2004 Janet Jackson incident, are remembered more than the score of the game or even the song being performed. There is plenty of information out there listing the past performers of the Halftime Shows, all the way back to the beginning. I chose to get the information right from the horse’s mouth and went to NFL.com. That page also has every aspect of the halftime shows broken down bit by bit. If you are curious who sang the national anthem in a particular year or things of the like, I suggest giving it a look. For now, take a quick trip through the past 15 years of halftime shows, including the upcoming SuperBowl this weekend–
2014 – Bruno Mars, Red Hot Chili Peppers
2013 – Beyonce, Destiny’s Child
2012 – Madonna
2011 – Black Eyed Peas
2010 – The Who
2009 – Bruce Springsteen and the E-Street Band
2008 – Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers
2007 – Prince
2006 – Rolling Stones
2005 – Paul McCartney
2004 – Janet Jackson, Justin Timberlake, P. Diddy, Kid Rock and Nelly
2003 – Shania Twain, No Doubt, and Sting
2002 – U2
2001 – Aerosmith, Britney Spears, *N’Sync, Mary J. Blige and Nelly.
2000 – Phil Collins, Christina Aguilera, Enrique Iglesias, Toni Braxton, 80-person choir.
By: Kyle Yung
Inside Llewyn Davis is the newest project from writers/directors Joel and Ethan Coen. This film is the winner of 4 National Society of Film Critic’s Awards that include Best Picture, Best Director, Best Actor and Best Cinematography. The story follows a week in the life of folk singer Llewyn Davis as he battles the question that haunts a musician’s dreams: At what point do you throw in the towel?
What I love most about this movie is the fact that Llewyn’s journey is not the typical Hollywood formula that usually follows a lead character chasing their musical aspirations. Generally, the musician character runs through a series of trials that is supposed to make them grow as a person, then somehow they luckily manage to play at just the right venue in front of just the right person and land a record deal as the ultimate prize for their difficult journey. You will not find that in this film and that is what makes it amazing. Life is not perfect. We are not perfect. The emotions that reach us through this film seem a bit more real without the unrealistic expectation of a happy ending.
Llewyn’s journey is a dark ride that takes him from New York to Chicago in 1961. His lives as a modern nomad, he’s utterly broke, and there is no light waiting for him at the end of the tunnel. Llewyn, since the beginning of his solo career, has been unable to land steady gigs outside of dive bars such as The Gaslight, which he refers to as a “basket-house.” He snags a ride to Chicago to try out for The Gate of Horn and is told, “I see no money here.”
Folk music has not reached its moment of appreciation within the music scene of 1961. It is at this point that Llewyn tries to turn away from music and head back to the merchant seamen. Life has different plans. He is not meant to abandon writing and performing folk music- it seems the world is stepping in and telling him to stick it out. At the end of the film there is a young Bob Dylan character that goes up to play after Llewyn and seems to be drawing the crowd into his music. It would seem that sometime soon folk music might reach the mainstream.
We would all like to think just because we follow an idea or a passion that we will be the ones to make it mainstream. The truth is these things fall into place in their own time. Llewyn may find himself in a more accepting time in the very near future.
It has been said in interviews that the Brothers may be ending their era of shooting with 35 mm film with this latest project. They say that even though it all goes into a computer to be edited anyway, which arguably makes it “digital” regardless, that there is still a particular feel to what is being shown. I agree whole-heartedly and am slightly sad to see the possible end of an era from some of my favorite filmmakers. From Blood Simple in 1984 to the 2013 Inside Llewyn Davis—it has been an incredible expedition of film.
Take the trip with Llewyn through the 1961 folk-music scene as he heads towards the realization that we are put where we are meant to be. Also, be sure to catch the significance of Llewyn being nudged forward by his catalyst “Ulysses.”
By: Kyle Yung
What is love? What does it actually mean to us? We can define it, technically. We can recognize it when we see it, potentially. In the new film “Her” starring Joaquin Phoenix, Amy Adams, and Scarlett Johansson, the true meaning of the word love comes under scrutiny. Alternately, this line of logic follows hand in hand with the idea of our dependence upon technology.
Theodore Twombly (Phoenix) is a lonely writer who works for a company that specializes in personal letters to your loved ones. They put to paper the words that you just can’t find on your own. Theodore has been going through a messy divorce and is disillusioned with the concept of love and moving on. That is until the new OS operating system comes out. It is a personalized program designed to grow with you and learn from you. The rest of the film follows Theodore and his evolving relationship with his OS system named Samantha.
I have seen many naysayers attack the film and call it “that movie where the guy screws the iPhone.” While I did have a few uncomfortable moments with the “sex” scenes between Theodore and Samantha, it did not detract from my awe at the cinematography, character development or the challenge to my own understanding of what it means to love.
In the world of the film, it becomes pretty common for people to begin dating their OS operating systems. The program is so advanced that is begins to know you better than you do. That is one of the main traits that we look for in potential partners, so it seemed a logical progression to me. The trials that every relationship encounters are represented in the interactions between Theodore and Samantha. What amazed me most was the portrayal of jealousy and earnestness between them. They accept one another in a way that most conventional couples couldn’t even come close to.
Ultimately, the main problem is that Samantha advances in her consciousness and evolves beyond the need to connect with Theodore. He is left alone again, but has acknowledged the faults that led him to grow so dependent upon Samantha in the first place. Theodore was looking for love in all the wrong places. He wanted all of the good things without all the complications that filter through. By the end of the film he has come to realize that he is capable of love, but that love is not clean or perfect. Samantha teaches him a lot about himself. He has a long way to go, but his new awareness should at least allow him a better path to happiness in the future.
Think about technology and where it is going. What happens when we grow even more dependent on it? What happens when it’s programmed to love us back, and what would that kind of love mean to an entity not bound by biological restrictions? These are the types of things that flood your mind as the credits begin to roll. This is an amazing film. It is thought-provoking, poignant, sensual, complicated and purposefully makes you uncomfortable for brief moments in order to make you ask yourself why in the hell you’re feeling that way.
Director/Writer Spike Jonze makes us think about what love actually is in an era when we are drifting so far from one another.
By: Kyle Yung
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There is plenty of melding when it comes to the thin line between musician and actor in the field of entertainment. Some musicians manage to make the transition successfully. The list I have compiled represents 14 popular movies starring rappers on Netflix. All of your main searches for “hip-hop,” “rappers,” “movies starring rappers,” “music,” and all manner of searching for individual artists names will lead you to these most common results.
Some of the titles I included are actually documentaries, but given that they are solely about the ever-changing world of rap/hip-hop I felt they needed to be included. I always enjoy when the film industry finds hidden talent where the rest of us would not think to look. I look forward to seeing more rappers in film if they have the talent for it. Until new titles surprise us on the big screen check out this list:
Rapper Snoop Dogg travels to Jamaica to reinvent his music and persona with a more reggae oriented feel.
Hustle & Flow
A Memphis pimp battles his own midlife crisis as he teams up with unlikely people to self-produce music.
16 Blocks (dvd only)p>
An elderly police officer gets more than he bargained for in the task of transporting a witness.
Four Brothers (dvd only)
Four adoptive brothers seek to avenge their mother’s murder.
8 mile (dvd only)
A young aspiring rapper doubts his abilities as he experiences hardship, betrayal and adversity
Four teens get swept up in the power struggle of the inner city.
The Italian Job
When one of their teams betrays them all and leaves them for dead, a group of professional thieves plans an elaborate heist against their old partner.
Smokin’ Aces (dvd only)
“Buddy Israel,” a magician turned snitch, decides to turn states evidence to save his own hide and several groups wish to silence him before he has the chance to talk.
Paid in Full
In the 1980s, a young man in Harlem fights to build a drug empire, only to have a crisis of conscience.
Something From Nothing: The Art of Rap
This documentary covers rap music, its origins, and rise to global notoriety.
Get Rich or Die Tryin’
A drug dealer turns his back on crime to pursue his dream of rapper stardom.
An 11-year-old-boy receives a crash course in manhood as he spends the day with his ex-con uncle.
21 Jump Street (dvd only)
A pair of immature underachieving cops are sent undercover as high schoolers to bring down a drug ring.
House of Bodies
A detective delves into a case that involves a young deaf boy and a website run from a home whose former occupant was a serial killer.
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The new year holds many promises, and the film industry is no exception. Some of our favorite franchises continue their journeys, while new voices also come to light. Here is a list of the best and brightest looking films being released in 2014. As always, I have gathered a little bit of everything here. You have your comedy, your action, your family films,horror, Sci-fi,and even a film based on new take of a Disney villainess. It’s more variety than watching the same five trailers on TBS for the hundredth time–you have to give me that at least.
This is by no means every single movie being released this year, but the list should be enough to wet your appetite. I have already arranged my personal “must sees” in my mind–I am sure that something will grab you and have you planning, waiting, and dying to watch. Take a look at this 2014 release list:
Transformers: Age of Extinction
Guardians of the Galaxy
Paranormal Activity: The Marked Ones
The Amazing Spiderman 2
X-Men: Days of Future Past
The Maze Runner
The Legend of Hercules
Dawn of the Planet of the Apes
The Expendables 3
Jack Ryan: Shadow Recruit
22 Jump Street
How to Train Your Dragon 2
300: Rise of An Empire
Edge of Tomorrow
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Fight Club is arguably one of the most influential movies in the minds of twenty-somethings and teenagers alike. It is an amazing book, and the film has become an icon all its own. Tyler Durden brought out the cynic in us all. That little voice in the back of our minds that wants to stick it to our boss, or speak up when we otherwise hold our tongues–these compulsions were given a voice through the character of Tyler Durden. I have gathered 10 Tyler Durden quotes that every man should live by and arranged them with some of the best moments from the movie.
We cook your meals, we haul your trash, we connect your calls, we drive your ambulances. We guard you while you sleep. Do not… f*ck with us.
It’s only after we’ve lost everything that we’re free to do anything.
Sticking feathers up your butt does not make you a chicken.
We are the byproducts of a lifestyle obsession. Murder, crime, poverty, these things don’t concern me. What concerns me are celebrity magazines, television with 500 channels, some guy’s name on my underwear.
You’re not your job. You’re not how much money you have in the bank. You’re not the car you drive. You’re not the contents of your wallet. You’re not your f*cking khakis.
Without pain, without sacrifice, we would have nothing.
We’ve all been raised on television to believe that one day we’d all be millionaires, and movie gods, and rock stars. But we won’t.
This is your life, and it’s ending one minute at a time.
The things you own end up owning you.
I say never be complete, I say stop being perfect, I say let’s evolve, let the chips fall where they may .
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Initially, I was skeptical about the concept of actor Keanu Reeves’ presence in the new film 47 Ronin. My concern coming from the initial trailers showing a white man entangled in the world of the samurai, which looked dangerously close to the plot line of The Last Samurai with Tom Cruise. I went in with this stigma in mind, but the film surprised me.
47 Ronin is based loosely on a celebrated traditional Japanese tale. There is a historical basis for the storyline, but like all stories from long ago, in any culture, many liberties have been taken to keep the story relevant and accessible to an ever- changing culture. There are many articles in circulation condemning 47 Ronin for its historical inaccuracies in regards to the original tale and its portrayal of ancient Japan on the whole.
These people are being far too hard on a highly interpretive medium. Over the course of the film, I was actually slightly bummed that there was not more use of “Kai’s” hidden demonic abilities. By the end, though, I was praising the film for the sparse use of supernatural elements. Say what you want about the stereotype of associating these types of elements with ancient Japan in film, but at least they did not go the route of Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon. In my opinion, there was a tasteful use of supernatural qualities. There was just enough to keep the attention of our otherwise ADD-stricken society. Hey, they’re trying to sell tickets.
47 Ronin actually mirrors the position of our society. The original tale was about the samurai class as it fought to keep its identity. They were warriors without a war, and a class without a function. As Fight Club eloquently points out, “we are the middle children of history.” We, as a society, feel generally lost. We feel that we have no purpose. This story is about finding your purpose and place in the world, and defending it with every part of your being. The actual story of what happened is quite interesting and highly debated. The movie touches the main points in the plot–the act of disrespect, the feuding houses, the concepts of unflinching respect and honor—but provides its own twist for the sake of entertainment value.
In the film, Lord Asano and his family are setup by Lord Kira. The act of disrespect Lord Asano is accused of perpetrating is punishable only by death. The Lord accepts this so that his family and those who live on his lands will not be punished, and he can meet his end honorably through the act of ritual suicide known as Seppuku. Oishi, Lord Asano’s chief guard, knows that this has been a setup and vows to take down Lord Kira.
There are two parallel storylines that play out during Oishi’s quest to avenge his Lord. Kai, Keanu Reeves, is the outcast of this society. He is seen as lowly as a dog to many of the inhabitants of the community, but he accepts his humble life. The second storyline follows Kai’s love interest in Lord Asano’s daughter Mika. Their love is forbidden, and ultimately, it not allowed to blossom. Oishi, after years of imprisonment, realizes that he will have to rely on Kai’s assistance in order to clear Lord Asano’s name and bring honor back to the land. Kai has a showdown with the demon who raised him, and this is one of the few instances we see his powers in action.
In the end, Oishi and Kai lead the 47 ronin samurai (samurai without a master) to victory against the warriors of Lord Kira. However, they had been ordered not to take revenge upon the date of Lord Asano’s suicide. For breaking this direct order they are all sentenced to death. Oishi asks the honorable Shogun Tsunayoshi for forgiveness, and for his men to be allowed to die with honor. Kai and Mika manage to meet before the large Seppuku ritual. They express their love simply and acknowledge that since they were not allowed to act upon their love in this life—they will search for one another in their next lives until they can truly be together.
Overall, I thoroughly enjoyed this film and would highly recommend it. Don’t listen to all those naysayers out there harping on the historical accuracy of the film. The underlying message comes through just fine, which is the point in the first place. After all, Beowulf is one of the most celebrated tales from our history, but do we really believe that a man defeated dragon-like creatures on land and in the sea? Just go watch this entertaining film with an amazing cast and crew.
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The film Fast and Furious 7 was originally set to come out in July of 2014. The untimely death of actor Paul Walker on November 30th postponed production, which left the cast and crew with the hard choice of how to finish the film, if at all. It appears that everyone involved with the film wishes to continue with production in much the same manner the cast and crew of The Imaginarium of Dr. Parnassus did for Heath Ledger. There is enough footage to put something together, even though it will have to be reworked. Everyone wishes to keep the franchise alive to honor the memory and dedication of Walker. Shooting will resume this year in preparation for the April 2015 release.
There was talk of using CGI to keep Walker alive in the film, but Universal and Director James Wan have chosen to give the character a proper send off rather than just dropping the character and pretending the audience won’t notice. While CGI may have worked in piecing together the last production moments of The Crow after Brandon Lee’s passing, it doesn’t seem right for this film.
The creators of the Fast and Furious franchise definitely stumbled onto a winning formula for action/crime/thriller films. They know what the fans have come to expect from the series and continue to deliver high-octane action straight to the big screen time and again. In the upcoming film, the already action-packed cast will be adding Jason Statham into the mix as the film’s villain.
For those of you keeping score at home, here is a quick summary of the newest Fast and Furious film: Toretto and the whole crew are back. Following the defeat of Owen Shaw (from Fast and Furious 6), Dominic Toretto and the crew return to the states to start rebuilding their lives. However, Ian Shawl, Owen’s older brother, is out for blood to avenge his brother’s death. Toretto and crew learn that Ian has killed their friend Han, and they set out to find Ian before he finds them.
By: Kyle Yung
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We have come to that time of year again- when we will all struggle for weeks to avoid writing 2013 on everything in the new year. Also, on Dec. 31st we will all be welcoming 2014, drink in hand. There are many things to remember to be thankful for. For one, we have made it through another year. What hasn’t killed us has made us stronger, and we cannot help but look to 2014 with hope. Ringing in the new year means that Tuesday night people across the world will get off work and head to the bar, the friend or family’s party, or even staying in with the significant other – Celebration will come in all forms. I have roused up a list of 10 things to not do on New Year’s Eve. Some of these suggestions should be common sense, and others are friendly reminders put there to help ensure you meet 2014 safe and sound. Here are the ten things you should not do on New Year’s Eve:
1. Drink and drive
(an oldie but a goodie)
2. Drunk dial/text your Ex
(this is really for your own good. You’ll thank me someday)
3. Forget to hydrate
(this means water)
4. Attend large crowds
(drinking + booze = easily pick-pocketed)
5. Try and set an unrealistic New Year’s goals
(really and truly avoid “I am going to do (blank) every day this year”)
6. Binge drink
(Rock on, just remember that you’re human and have a limit)
7. Rely solely on others
(always have a backup plan)
8. Leave your drink unattended
(middle school taught us all about roofies, yeah?)
9. Get crazy with fireworks
(moderation. Probably better to attend a firework show)
10. Disregard eating
(something has to be there to soak up the alcohol people)
Also, do not forget to open your doors at midnight in order to let the old year exit the premises. That about covers it…stay safe, watch out for one another, greet 2014 with as much hope as you can and keep friends and loved ones close.
Before I go for good, I want you to also keep in mind these New Year’s Day superstitions. Many cultures believe these cautionary tales whole heartedly. It wouldn’t hurt to browse and be a bit open-minded. After all, our ancestors believed these things and they got us here safely. Take a quick look at some New Year’s Day tips from olden times:
– Don’t cry: or your year could be filled with unhappiness
– Fill your wallet before the first: to ensure prosperity in the new year.
– Don’t break anything: your luck could start off badly and stay that way.
– Nothing goes out of the house: for fear of losing things in the new year.
– Don’t lend money or pay back money: you could be paying out money all year long.
– Do not wash dishes or laundry: said to foretell a death in the family in the new year.
– Try and do something work related, something small: sets the tone for job prosperity.
– No bare cupboards: stock by the 1st or it could set the precedent for your whole year.
– Beware the first person to enter your home: this may influence the year ahead.
– Be mindful of the wind: if the wind is out of the South there will be prosperous times ahead. The wind out of the East means famine and calamities and out of the North means a bad year for weather. Wind from the West means plenty of milk and fish. Calm winds means a prosperous and joyful year for all.
By: Kyle Yung
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With our busy lives it is hard to settle on something to do during the holidays, other than relax. If you happen to live in Indiana, like I do, then I have found 10 places to visit during the holidays. Admissions for the events I’ve located are either relatively low or completely free. If specifics for the event or town were provided, then I posed them here for you. Each event is in a different town, so, it should be easy to locate something fun near you. I know that travel can be a hassle during the holidays, but it’s nice to try new things and create new memories with family or friends.
Check out this list of towns and events. Indiana has many things to offer during the holiday season. If you are looking to find more options in your own back yard or have been looking for an excuse for the little road trip you keep talking about, then let’s explore Christmas- Hoosier style.
1. Santa Claus, Indiana
This town can claim that it has the only post office in the world with the Santa Claus name. During the holiday season there are numerous Christmas themed events such as Santa’s Candy Castle, Santa Claus Christmas Store, Santa’s Stables, and many more. You can’t get more festive than this. The Kids can even write Santa a letter in the Santa Claus Museum and Village. Christmas is everyday here, but ringing in the actually holiday can be that much more magical.
2. Indianapolis – Christmas at the Zoo
This event has become known for its fantastic lighting displays around the holidays. You can also enjoy the active animals that enjoy the cooler weather of the season. You can get in Wednesday through Sunday from 5-9 p.m. through December 29th. The Zoo will, however, be closed for Christmas Eve and Christmas Day. Christmas at the Zoo is included in the regular entry fee for the grounds.
3. Hammond – A Christmas Story Comes Home
Hammond, Indiana is home to the setting for one of the most infamous holiday movies ever: A Christmas Story. The Indiana Welcome Center in Hammond will be showing an exhibit that contains six animated scenes from the movie. These displays were first showcased in the windows of Macy’s in New York City. Come enjoy a little piece of hometown cinema history. The free event will be held through January 5th everyday between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m.
4. Shipshewana – Ice Festival
The festival is on December 27th and 28th. There will be ice carving from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. on the 27th by teams of people creating themed sculptures. On the 28th the ice carving competition will be from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. Additionally, there is a chili cook-off between 10 a.m. and 3 p.m. You can even purchase a commemorative pin fro the event that is designed each year by a Westview High School student. The pin gets you into the chili cook-off for free and gives you discounts in town throughout January.
5. Zionsville – Christmas in the Village
Christmas lives in the town all month long. On the 21st, Santa will be in “Santa’s House” from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Horse drawn carriages are available from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. and the antique trolley car will be running during the same hours as “Santa’s House.”
6. Madison – Santa’s Cottage
Santa will be at the Broadway Fountain in his cottage from 6 to 8 p.m. on Nov. 29, Dec. 6, Dec. 7, Dec. 13, Dec. 20 and Dec. 21, and from noon to 2 p.m. on Dec. 22. While you’re there check out the beautiful scenery of historic Madison and browse the unique shops lining the downtown strip.
7. Evansville – Ritzy’s Fantasy of Lights
The event lends aid to the Easter Seals Rehabilitation Center, and includes more than 60 intricate lighting displays. Some of which feature animated pieces up to 20 feet tall. Event begins at 5 p.m. each evening and goes until the first of January.
8. Fort Wayne – Botanical Conservatory Christmas
The Conservatory Showcase will be filled with Red Poinsettias to set the mood for the holiday season, along with a cozy fireplace setting. It should provide warm memories and plenty of photograph opportunities.
Hours are: Tuesday – Saturday 10 am – 5 pm, Thursday 10 am – 8 pm, Sunday Noon – 4 pm, Closed Mondays Admission: Adults $5, Children (ages 3-17) $3, Age 2 and under Free.
9. Kokomo – Christmas at the Seiberling
Holiday events have been occurring all month, but they till continue through the 22nd. The holiday tours of the beautifully and seasonally decorated mansion run Tuesday through Sunday 1-4 p.m. Daytime tour admission is $5 adults, $4 seniors, and $2 for kids 12 & under.
10. Michigan City – Christmas at Barker Mansion
Experience the magic of the holiday with three floors of decorated rooms. Lasts through January 15th. Must call for times. Admission Fee: $5 adults; $2 children.
By: Kyle Yung