Thursday, May 19

Another Career for Gary Coleman

On the release of another Star Wars film, I present the following. In talking with some coworkers today at lunch, we came up with another career for Gary Coleman, AKA Arnold from Different Strokes. Consider these as possible roles for Gary in one of the original films in the Star Wars trilogy:

Han Solo?
Darth Vader?

Gary might have missed his calling, and could have been an even bigger star than he was on TV. And, for those wondering, no, I haven't seen the new Star Wars movie yet. No, I wasn't one of the dedicated, but equally crazy, fans who streamed in at 12:01 AM to see the new film. Truth be told, I missed Episodes 1 and 2, but have heard some good things of this film, so might see it--but after a few weeks, to let all the die heart fans see it first.

Friday, May 6

"Ray" Like You've Never Seen Him

For those that don't know, "descriptive video," is a narration of spoken descriptions that are inserted in the natural pauses in film and TV. This description describes what's happening on the screen (costumes, set changes, gestures, etc), for the blind or vision impaired viewer. Earlier this year, "Ray" was released on VHS and DVD. One of the DVD versions has a descriptive narration track containing the same quality descriptions as were on the movie when it was released. To learn more about Descriptive Video Services (the people that make all this), refer to the Fun Page on my site. There you will find links to a DVS video list, the Mopix group and their initiative to describe many popular feature films when they are released, and other information.

I bring all this up to say that today I received my copy of the descriptive version of "Ray" on DVD. All I can say is: "Wow!" If you haven't seen this film, or if you want to relive it, then I would highly recommend this version. The descriptive narration is what I remember from the film I saw in the theater. I can also access the Director's Commentary, which is not described, but which has many insights on the making of the film, including scenes, different backgrounds, and many character insights. Just by watching the Director's Commentary, I get a sense of how dynamic and complex Ray really was, and how the director attempted to give us a glempse into this complexity.

To order this DVD, go to its page on Get your copy now before its unavailable. You can also order it from Wall-Mart. The full name of the DVD is: "Ray, DVS Blind and low Vision Enhanced Widescreen Edition."

Since not many descriptive DVD's have been made yet, I consider this a great one to have, not only for the Oscar winning performance by actor Jamie Foxx, but also for the novelty of having a descriptive mainstream DVD period. Hopefully, DVS and others will put more of these out there. DVS does sell described videos, but videos aren't as fun and flexible as DVD's.

An Interesting Twist on music Videos

Yesterday, a story appeared on the PR News Wire, entitled Stevie Wonder Makes Historic Breakthrough for Blind and Low Vision Music Fans. From this, I don't expect to be able to access every video on MTV or VH1, but it is an interesting twist, and truthfully, something that I might have really loved back in the day. It definitely offers a new meaning to "descriptive video."