James Cameron’s ‘Avatar’ rakes in rave reviews…

Full SPOILER FREE review from Alex Billington of FirstShowing here

Our previous posts on ‘Avatar’ here.

TheTelegraph has a roundup:

Here are a selection of some of the previews:

Hollywood Reporter: “A dozen years later, James Cameron has proven his point: He is king of the world … The only question is: How will Cameron ever top this?”

Screen International: “It’s an unprecedented marriage of technology and storytelling which is on the whole remarkably successful.”

Variety: “Twelve years after “Titanic,” which still stands as the all-time B.O. champ, Cameron delivers again with a film of universal appeal that just about everyone who ever goes to the movies will need to see.”

The Times: “Avatar is an overwhelming, immersive spectacle. The state-of-the-art 3D technology draws us in, but it is the vivid weirdness of Cameron’s luridly imagined tropical otherworld that keeps us fascinated.”

The Sun: “…make sure you can say you were there when the future of cinema began.”

Alex Billington of First Showing via Twitter: “James Cameron is a freakin’ genius! I can’t say much but wow, I loved it. Avatar was phenomenal, pretty much blew me away.”

The Guardian: ..”.it looked amazing and that the story was gripping.”

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December 11, 2009. Tags: , , , , . Celebrities, Entertainment, Fantasy, Fiction, Film, graphic art, Mystery, Popular Culture, Sci Fi, Suspense. 2 comments.

Rick Santelli smacks down Steve Liesman on economic data and unemployment

Steve IMO is smoking the CNBC Treasury Hopium. Rickster nails it, and Steve is arguing SEMANTICS!! Emergency UE, Extended EU, it is what it is Steve! over 3 million on extended EMERGENCY UE bens that don’t get reported on the top line UE data…..THE ECONOMY IS NOT ‘GOOD’ (note the REAL economy, not just markets), NOT RECOVERING, NOT PRODUCING JOBS, PERIOD.

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December 11, 2009. Tags: , , , , , , , . Economy, Finance, Obama Administration, Politics, Popular Culture, Unemployment Statistics, Wall St. 2 comments.

Dr Who End of Time clip from BBC News

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courtesy of madterrapin:

BBC News had an interview with June Whitfield this morning and they showed a clip of The End of Time (quite a funny one) from Doctor Who. Enjoy! *No copyright infringement intended.

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December 11, 2009. Tags: , , , , , , . Celebrities, Entertainment, Fantasy, Horror, Mystery, Popular Culture, Sci Fi, Supernatural, Suspense. Comments off.

Update: Market Roundup: House vote on Financial Regulatory Reform Bill today, GE gets an exemption, Geithner wants to exempt TARP 2 from restrictions and Geithner pushing BofA and CITI to payback TARP over objections of FDIC…

Update 2: It’s up on the newslinkys now:

Conyers/Turner/Lofgren/Marshall/Waters/Cohen/Miller (NC)/ Delahunt/Nadler/Fudge Amendment #201 (Defeated 241-188)Revised: Would allow bankruptcy courts to extend repayment periods, reduce excessive interest rates and fees, and adjust the principal balance of the mortgage to a home’s fair market value as necessary to prevent foreclosure and revised to allow the VA, FHA, and RHS to take steps to facilitate mortgage modifications.  The amendment is substantively identical to title I, subtitle A and sections 121-123 of subtitle B of H.R. 1106 Helping Families Save Their Homes Act of 2009), which passed the House on March 5, 2009. (See related story)

Update: 1:25 pm EST: The DEMOCRATICALLY CONTROLLED HOUSE has just rejected the Amendment to the Financial Regulatory Reform Bill that would have allowed bankruptcy judges to ‘cramdown’ mortgages. This after we learned yesterday that of a pool of 3 MILLION delinquent homeowners (which is now up to 4.8 million BTW), Treasury/HUD have managed to get the banks to permanently modify 31,000, yes that’s thousand.  After that EPIC FAIL I became a SUPPORTER of this Amendment. It is not the BANKS holding these loans anymore peeps!! It is FAN FRED FHA!!!!

That being the case as taxpayers we will take a hit when those loans go to short sale and some investor makes a profit, WE will be bailing out FAN FRED (again) and FHA. Why wouldn’t we just buy the damned bad loans oh yeah that was what Paulson SAID he was gonna do with TARP.

Now WE the taxpayer guaranteeing FAN FRED FHA OWN these loans ALREADY. Why the hell arent we writing them down and taking the hit ONCE. Instead the homeowners get kicked out, it gets sold for less then the mortgage and we STILL give FAN FRED FHA the bailout for the loss. And now some investor with FREE money from the FED has the house and will dump it on the market in another bubble like the one they made that started this mess.

And Tim wants TARP II. But no cramdown. And they think they are ‘progressive’, they say they are Democrats.  Obama’s Treasury didn;t want it, therefore it didnt happen, This is Unbelievable.

This despite that IDENTICAL legislation had already PASSED the House once before and died in the Senate. Could not be more clear they are leaving the homeowners out to dry.

And everyone who lives near or is family with or sells goods to those homeowners. We are ALL gonna pay when people keep walking on these loans and getting foreclosed on, we will have ENDLESS bailouts of FAN FRED FHA as those homes are sold and resold in new bubbles and everyone makes a bundle but the taxpers and families who lose their homes. Utterly disgusting.

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Should BofA and CITI be allowed to leave TARP? Will they be back like a bad penny?

Look for the cramdown/judicial mod amendment action also. Since Treasury and the banks managed only 31,000 mods out of 3 MILLION loans I now support it, frak ’em.

Politico:

FINAL RULE ON THE REFORM BILL, including a summary of all 36 amendments made in order by the Rules Committee. Some got votes Thursday night, others will come today. Final passage is expected sometime around noon.

BILL HAS LOOPHOLES, report WSJ’s Damian Paletta and David Enrich, “Buried in a 239-page amendment to the U.S. House of Representatives’ financial regulatory overhaul is a provision that appears to do just one thing: exempts financial-services company USAA from some of the bill’s tougher provisions. The carve-out is one of a number of exceptions that allow companies to avoid fresh scrutiny envisioned by the White House, which is aiming to overhaul the nation’s financial-regulatory apparatus. The beneficiaries run from corporations such as General Electric Co. and Pitney Bowes Inc. to USAA, which caters to members of the military and their families, to so-called fraternal benefit societies.”

Geithner has learned NOTHING from the disasterous capital infusions into the big banks in TARP ROUND ONE. Now in Son of TARP he wants to EXEMPT everyone from the Feinberg pay czar that they installed to curb populist anger that THEY stoked in the first place!!! Which I agree was a stupid stupid limitation but CONGRESS did it, they will do it AGAIN. He cannot protect them. Who believes Congress will not arbitrarily add requirements later?

AND still no word on what the hexx they plan to do about HOUSING which was the FIRST thing named in TARP legislation…purpose was to address foreclosures and stabilize markets.:

WAPO REPORTS POSSIBLE SMALL BIZ TARP — by David Cho, A1, 2 column lead: “The Obama administration plans to channel money from the government’s massive financial bailout program to small businesses as part of an effort to limit the political and economic damage of high unemployment. One plan under consideration involves spinning off a new entity from [TARP] that would give banks access to federal funds without restrictions, including limits on executive pay, as long as the money was used to support loans to small businesses. … As an alternative, officials are prepared to ask Congress to modify TARP itself, easing the pay limits and other restrictions that would be imposed on small-business lenders taking the money, the sources said … Since the summer, the administration has been facing an uncomfortable dynamic in the economy. The ranks of the jobless have been growing, while big financial firms that got taxpayer bailout money have been thriving. In response, officials have been trying to recast TARP as aid for Main Street rather than Wall Street.”

GEITHNER SAYS SMALL BANKS WORRY OF TARP TAINT, reports FT’s Tom Braithwaite: “Tim Geithner, US Treasury secretary, on Thursday advocated exempting small businesses from restrictions attached to the bank bail-out program that Goldman Sachs , Citigroup and other large banks have been anxious to escape. In testimony to the Congressional Oversight Panel, Mr. Geithner said small banks were worried about being ‘stigmatized’ for asking for money from [TARP] and that this was exacerbating a credit crunch for their small business customers. They don’t want to come to do business with the government. ‘They think it’s a sign of weakness, not strength.’”

Geithner also pushed BofA and is pushing CITI paybacks of TARP, IMO to justify TARP 2: The Revenge of TARP!!!, over the objections of the FDIC. As originally reported by Andrew Ross Sorkin in the NYT. In the TARP C.O.P. questioning yesterday Geithner did not deny this. This morning a guest on CNBC noted this is a serious problem. We will post the video. FD: We are BofA/Merrill shareholders and have discussed this ad nauseum here on the site.

December 11, 2009. Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Economy, FDIC, Finance, Foreclosures, Housing, Obama Administration, Politics, TARP, Unemployment Statistics, Wall St. Comments off.

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