Stuff to Read While You’re Pretending to Work: Movie Reviews, Truths About Squatting, and More

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Before I get into today’s meat and potatoes I wanted to take the opportunity to suggest some new movies I think some of you will like.

As most of you who read this blog consistently understand, I’m a huge movie nerd.  I’d venture a guess that if I wasn’t a strength coach I’d probably try to figure out some way to become Kate Beckinsale’s cabana boy watch movies for a living.

Sort of like a more jacked version of Robert Ebert – except instead of something mundane like a star system or something trademarked like a thumbs-up/thumbs-down review (ALA Siskel & Ebert), I’d rank movies using a ” loaded” barbell system.

A barbell with no plates = god awful (Pain and Gain,The Hangover II, anything with the word Twilight in it).

From there, the more plates added onto the barbell dictates its level of badassery.

Ahhh, a guy can dream right?

Anyways, two movies I’ve watched recently that I felt were fairly decent and worthy of 3-4 plates were:

Killing Them Softly and A Place Beyond the Pines.

The former stars Brad Pitt as a hitman for hire and has some of the best cinematography I’ve seen in any film this year. Coincidentally, there was a movie that Pitt did a few years back with the same director called The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford which I felt was another highly UNDERrated film that didn’t get much fanfare despite being nominated for two Oscars (Best Supporting Actor – Casey Affleck, and Achievement in Cinematography).

A fair warning: It’s more of a dialogue based movie and doesn’t really have a lot of shoot em-up scenes despite the title.  All I’ll add to that point is that I LOVE good dialogue and Pitt’s closing monologue is epic!

The latter movie – A Place Beyond the Pines – is one that Lisa and I have been meaning to see for a few weeks now.  I mean, it’s Ryan Gosling – the man can do no wrong after Drive.

We finally had the chance to go see it yesterday. This film teams Gosling with director Derek Cianfrance, who also directed Gosling (and Michelle Williams) in a Blue Valentine (arguably one of the most depressing yet unflinchingly real films on the heartache of relationships), and while I wanted to really, really like this film, I had to give it a solid B- because it’s so freaking long.

The acting was superb – kudos to Bradley Cooper by the way – but there were a few plot points I felt didn’t jive, and while I appreciated the storyline (the first act focuses on Gosling’s character, the second on Cooper’s, and the third on their two sons, I don’t want to give away the “twist”), I felt it was a teeny tiny bit far reaching.

Nonetheless, if you’re looking for two non-Iron Man 3 movies to watch relatively soon, maybe these will be up your alley?

Talking Shop: Video Interview with Tony Gentilcore – Harold Gibbons

I had the pleasure of sitting down for a Skype video interview with my pal Harold Gibbons last week where we discussed everything from why Yoda would make such an amazing strength coach to the fitness writing process. And lots of other stuff in between.

If you’re looking for an hour to kill while you’re sitting there at your desk hating life and think listening to my sultry voice would help pass the time, then I’d highly recommend slapping on a pair of headphones and give it a listen.

This was easily of the funnest interviews I’ve ever done.

And look!  There’s a dragon in the background. Sweet!……;o)

Too Jacked to Olympic Lift: OLY Lifting Mobility – Wil Fleming

I’m about as adept at olympic lifting as I am at playing poker.  Which is to say, I’m god awful.  Speaking truthfully I don’t have a lot of experience with the OLY lifts which is why I generally steer clear of them and point people in the direction of guys like Wil whenever someone is interested in dabbling a little bit.

Even if OLY lifting isn’t your bag this was a fantastic post which digs into some common mobility restrictions.  Check out the t-spine drill!

On an aside, for those who are interesting in OLY lifting, I’d highly recommend Wil’s Complete Olympic Lifting DVD.

6 Truths About Squats – Lee Boyce

My internet high-five of the week goes to Lee for writing this excellent piece on some of the common misconceptions when it comes to squatting.

Did what you just read make your day? Ruin it? Either way, you should share it with your friends and/or comment below.

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Plus, get a copy of Tony’s Pick Things Up, a quick-tip guide to everything deadlift-related. See his butt? Yeah. It’s good. You should probably listen to him if you have any hope of getting a butt that good.

I don’t share email information. Ever. Because I’m not a jerk.

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